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individual the choice of his teacher. Short of this, the progress of reform will hardly stop in England.'-pp. 28–34.

We think so too. We own that we look forward to what we may call the ecclesiastical consequences of the Bill, as among the most important, as well as the most salutary, which it is calculated to produce. In England the approach of Church reform is already manifest. There are many highly-gifted and well-informed minds at work, preparing the moral rail-road, on which that great and necessary change is to travel at an accelerated rate. Every man you meet, unless he be himself a clergyman, or have clerical connexions, speaks of reform in the Church of England as a measure absolutely requisite, even to the maintenance of the clergy themselves. În many parishes the church rate has been refused : of course, it will be enforced during the present year, but not many years longer. In Ireland the tithe has been refused with so much effect, that Parliament has taken up the question, with a view to bring about some arrangement, whereby the clergy can be supported with less inconvenience to the population. With such a subject as this, so far as Ireland is concerned, we may fearlessly predict, the legislature will find it impossible to deal, except in the way of utter abolition. The view which our American friend has taken upon this point, is just and statesman-like.

• There is no part of the landscape, of which we find it so difficult to get a clear view as Ireland. A fatal wall of partition is kept up between her and the English Government. If that wall should be broken down, Ireland is safe; if not, we see not how, under a popular Parliament, it can be retained. That wall of partition is the legal establishment in Ireland of a Church hostile to the faith of the people of Ireland. Turks and Greeks do not differ more in their feelings on this subject, than the Catholics and Protestants of Ireland. Ireland is outraged by the Church establishment; and doubly so, on the comparison of herself with Scotland, whose national faith is established by law. This is the great cause of Irish disaffection. Redundant population and absenteeism are evils; but it is the Church that lies at the root of the difficulty, and poisons every thing. Unless the feelings of the people are consulted on this head, they must be held in subjection by military power, or not at all. But how are you to hold a people in military subjection, who, by popular election, send one hundred members to Parliament? The thing is impossible. If that representation do not work out an entire equality of privilege for its constituents, they will swarm off. The concessions already made to the Catholics will avail nothing. Concessions to a discontented party have no effect, but to give the party new strength and confidence. There is no medium between withholding all and granting all. If the Catholic population of Ireland shall, in each and every respect, be placed on a footing with their Protestant brethren, and every point of distinction be removed, and if Ireland be admitted to a share of the representation proportioned to her numbers, it may be retained in its connexion with England. If this is not done, it can only be kept by military possession.'--pp. 40, 41.

The government will, unquestionably, very soon have to choose one of three courses with respect to Ireland : either to allow it to govern itself as a separate and independent state, or to abolish not only the tithes, but the Church by law established in that country, and govern it through the Catholic millions of its population ; or to keep up the Protestant Church by a modification of the tithe system, and by the assistance of at least a hundred thousand armed soldiers. It is a mere idle speculation to think of any medium between these three divergent paths. There are no two men in the empire who know this better than Lords Grey and Brougham; and it is very clear to us, that in permitting Mr. Stanley and Viscount Melbourne to obtain committees from the two Houses of Parliament, for the purpose of collecting evidence, with respect to the tithe question in Ireland, they have given their sanction to an experiment which must result in proving to demonstration, that the Established Church cannot go on in Ireland, consistently with the peace and welfare of the great majority of the people.

Mr. Eagle's legal argument, with a view to shew that tithes are the property of the public, and under the absolute control of the legislature, is unanswerable. In the Christian Church, when the hierarchy was first established, there were no such things as benefices. The bishop and his clergy lived together at the cathedral church, and whatever tithes and offerings were received by the bishop, or his officers, they were all brought into a common fund for the maintenance of worship, the support of the bishop and clergy, the feeding, clothing, and burying their poor brethren; for the relief of widows or orphans, persons tyrannically condemned to the mines, to prison, or banishment, and for other suitable works of piety and charity.' When parishes were created, and benefices endowed, the tithes, which had been previously divided into four parts, were apportioned in three; the first part being reserved for the support of the church, the second for the clergy, and the third for the poor; and although in some places the lay patrons had taken the first and third portions under their own management, in trust for the maintenance of the church and the poor, yet this abuse had very generally ceased in England before the Reformation. When that event occurred, the parochial clergy and the religious houses were, in fact, possessed of all the tithes of ecclesiastical benefices, in trust, for the three purposes just stated. Since the Reformation, however, the clergy have taken the whole of the three divisions to themselves, and have thrown the expense of erecting and repairing churches, and of feeding the poor, upon the community at large.

There is no doubt that the payment of tithes was originally a voluntary and pious offering, and that every person who paid tithes was at liberty to pay them to any clergyman whom he thought entitled to such an acknowledgment for his services. When benefices were first created, they were endowed by private liberality with a house and glebe; but although partial consecrations of tithes had taken place before the reign of John, they were not ge

nerally annexed to benefices until the commencement of the thirteenth century, when a law was enacted for that purpose. It follows, that if the legislature gave the tithes to the parochial clergy, the legislature can also take them away.

But it is, in truth, mere folly to entangle our fingers among the old cobwebs of the law, upon such a topic as this. The real question is, will the people continue to pay the tithes to the clergy of a church, which, in Ireland, does not embrace within its circle a fifteenth part of the population, and, in England, is every year becoming less and less respected ?

The picture which Mr. Stanley drew of the state of Ireland, when he proposed the reference of this important subject to a select committee, at the commencement of the present session, displays a much wider field for reflection than he, perhaps, had intended to furnish. Mr. Stanley is an ambitious man, desirous of shining and leading in public life, and looking, no doubt, to a much higher rank in the cabinet than that which he now enjoys. He is apprehensive that he cannot possibly succeed in his wishes, if he entertain, or, at least, give expression to, ideas calculated to excite the suspicions of the churchmen as to the sincerity of his attachment to the established faith; and although he well knows that some very strong measures must eventually be adopted with respect to the Church of Ireland, he is as yet afraid to approach them, and, as Lord Ebrington well expressed it, upon another occasion, he, and indeed all his colleagues, are at present "halting between two opinions." Hence it was that he talked of improvements in the collection of tithe in Ireland, which would afford the necessary security to the Protestant Church, while they tended to the removal of the grievances complained of.” This, we beg leave to tell the Right Honourable Secretary, is downright nonsense.

Under whatever title, money or the produce of land can be appropriated to the maintenance of the Protestant clergy in Ireland, the system itself will be odious, and, he may depend upon it, will be, from the very beginning of it, impracticable. It is not so much to the tithes that the objection is entertained in that country, but to the payment of tithes to a hierarchy, whose services the great majority of the people have uniformly repudiated,—whose very presence they detest, --whose doctrines they despise. Security to the Protestant Church,"indeed! Why, what a statesman is this not to see, and not to proclaim it openly, and without disguise, that it is the existence of that very burthensome establishment which stands between the people of Ireland and the hope of prosperity! It is impossible that the Church can be secure in a country where it is almost universally hated, and it is equally impossible that the Irish people can ever be attached to the British government, until, instead of devising measures for raising new bulwarks round that Church, the ministry efface every vestige of it from the face of a land, upon which it never would flourish, if the world were to endure for a hundred thousand years.

It is admitted on all hands, that the law of tithe, as it at present stands, cannot be enforced in Ireland, and that any attempt to enforce it has only been followed by fresh triumphs on the part of the people. We are very far from considering, as triumphs, however, those outrages which have been occasionally perpetrated against the persons of the unfortunate men, who have been employed as the officers of the law by the clergy. Such proceedings as these are more than criminal. They indicate a state of society, differing only in name, from the hordes of savage hunters who still occupy the north-western territories of America. At the same time it must be admitted, that the ferocity which particularly marked the massacre of a number of policemen in the county of Kilkenny, infamous though it must be deemed, gave a terrible warning, as to the extremes of madness and despair to which the people had been driven. It must also be acknowledged, that such outrages are of rare occurrence, and that latterly the opposition to the payment of tithes has been carried on in a strictly legal manner. The impost is refused, and the clergy are compelled to adopt the most vexatious proceedings, which, even when successful, reduce their expected incomes to a half, or even to a third. In describing the systematic opposition which they experience throughout the counties of Carlow, Wicklow, Wexford, Tipperary, Longford, Westmeath, Kilkenny, and the King's and Queen's counties, Mr. Stanley says, “ Cattle had been seized in default of payment, and the plan was resorted to of confining them within doors in the daytime, and letting them out during a short period of the night. If they were sent to graze in the daytime, scouts and signals intimated the approach of the officers of the law, and they were driven off. When seized, no opposition was offered to the law; being branded by the owner beforehand, they were impounded and brought to sale. No man, however, would expose himself to the odium of becoming a purchaser, and the tithe collector was obliged to purchase them bimself. They were taken to a distant market; but on their way thither, no man would give them provender, or even a night's shelter. They were escorted by police to the sea-shore, for the purpose of being sold in the markets of this country; but resolutions had been entered into, even in this country, that no person would buy Irish cattle, branded and brought to sale for the payment of tithes!" Who shall say after this, that the acts of the legislature, even when zealously aided by the civil and military authorities, are worth one farthing, when they are opposed to the interests and wishes of the people?

Under Mr. Goulburn's Irish administration, a law was enacted for the composition of tithes, the effect of which was to make the tithe a kind of equitable assessment upon the whole parish, and the clergy were put in possession of all the remedies of a landlord. Yet under this law, the matter was not at all mended. In proof of this, we may refer to the letter of Archdeacon Cotton, rector of

Thurles, a populous and important town in the county of Tipperary. We refer to that gentleman's statement the more readily, because he is, in every sense of the word, an amiable, enlightened, liberalminded man; who would be one of the last persons in the country to commit himself in any unnecessary proceedings, that might tend to render his church more odious than it was in the eyes of his parishioners, all of whom, (numbering six or seven thousand,) with the exception of about two hundred and fifty, are Catholics. That gentleman, addressing the Irish government from a place where the new Act was in force, said,

“I am not asking payment for any tithes of this last harvest, but am merely suing for arrears of former years, and suing in the only way which the law provides—namely, by civil bill process at the quarter sessions, for notes voluntarily passed by the tithe payers, which notes ought to have been paid long ago, but which the parties uniformly decline paying, until compelled to it by course of law. More than £1000 is now due to me on such notes, and as these sums are owing by about 500 persons, the law requires that each person or his house shall be served with a process before he is brought into Court: how great a difficulty, if resistance be made, presents itself even in this first stage ! Yet this is far from the whole ; for even if these processes be served by means of extraordinary military succour, the presence of the person who served them, and his oath to that effect, will be required at the sessions : should he be prevented by violence, or deterred by threats, (a very likely matter in the present state of things,) the whole of these, accomplished with so much difficulty, become as mere waste paper. Again, if the person who witnessed the promissory notes be deterred in the same way from appearing, the notes become useless ; and the clergyman is not only defrauded of his rights, long and painfully sought for, and acknowledged even by the parties themselves, but moreover is put to considerable expense in legal proceedings, all of which will then fall upon himself. Still farther, if these obstructions are surmounted, and the assistant barrister is satisfied as to the justice of the claims, and grants all the decrees, is the end now gained ? Far from it! Another stage of difficulty is yet to be passed, and the same brute force will be brought forward to resist execution of the Court's judgements; and who will dare in the present state of that district to execute a single decree ? In the mean time, for every one of these I must have advanced 7s. 6d., the whole 500 of which may possibly be entirely useless."

What can be more painful, we ask, than to see a clergyman of a Christian church placed in such a situation as this? How is it possible that he can go through his duties, agitated by perpetual apprehensions, not only for the decent maintenance of his family, but even for his personal safety, amongst a hostile population ? What new system can be substituted for the Composition Act, which can by possibility render the payment of the tithe more palatable to the people? Let it be demanded from them as a rent payable to the landlord, or a tax payable to the state, they still must feel that it goes to the support of an establishment in which they have no interest, to which they owe all the misery that at

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