Imatges de pÓgina


since relating to a learned Judge on the Irish bench. It appeared that the learned Judge was complained against for frequently annoying counsel by interrupting their statements to the jury. On one occasion Mr. Curran was pleading before this learned personage, and was describing to the jury in very forcible terms how his own feelings had been annoyed when, coming through a neighbouring market, he saw a butcher in the act of killing a pig, when the pig, badly wounded, escaped from the butcher, who, with his weapon uplifted, rushed out of the door, when a child suddenly passed by- "And the man killed the child?" said the Judge. No, my Lord," replied Curran; "your Lordship sometimes jumps too readily to a conclusion; it was not the child, it was the pig." Really, it appeared to him that the noble Lord jumped to a conclusion in a somewhat similar way. About a month ago the noble Lord made a severe attack not only upon the past policy of the Government, but also upon its future policy, and that before the Government had availed themselves of their undoubted right to make an exposition of their views, through the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in the other House of Parliament. Since then-and he (Earl Granville) presumed because the noble Lord had seen that in another place the Chancellor of the Exchequer had stated that he was taking the opinion of the law officers of the Crown upon a point in dispute between him and the Bank of England -the noble Lord gave notice of the present Motion, by which he would urge their Lordships to order a correspondence to be produced which was of a perfectly private character, and that before the opinion of the law officers was known or even given, and therefore before, of course, the Chancellor of the Exchequer could adopt an opinion, whether in agreement with or in hostility to the Bank of England. The noble Lord began by saying that the first paper for which he moved had already been presented to the House of Commons. If it was thought necessary to reprint the document, of course there could be no objection. He was sure, from what the noble Lord had stated, he did not expect the Government to lay the other papers on the table. But then, said the noble Lord, "I think it necessary to state very shortly the Parliamentary grounds on which I found this Motion;" and then, for twentyfive minutes by the clock, the noble Lord took occasion to enter into the question Earl Granville

whether the Government was about to em bark in the dangerous experiment-which he, however, presumed they had no intention of doing-of issuing paper money without any condition and entirely on their own responsibility. He had given an answer to the Motion of the noble Lord, and the answer which he had to give to the speech of the noble Lord was, that he was perfectly ignorant of the plan, if any existed, to which the noble Lord had referred, and he believed his Colleagues behind him were equally ignorant of it.

THE MARQUESS OF CLANRICARDE said, the answer which the Motion of his noble Friend had elicited from the noble Earl must be highly satisfactory to all persons in Parliament and out of it who took an interest in the important question to which his noble Friend had referred. He thought that from the noble Earl's speech it might be concluded that there was no intention whatever on the part of the Government to disturb the present excellent arrangement by which the Bank of England exercised the functions given to it by Act of Parliament, and that the scheme which had been very much ventilated and agitated out of Parliament had no sanction from the Government. He thought his noble Friend had done good service in bringing out that avowal, because undoubtedly there was-he would not say strong, he would not say grave-but there was some slight ground upon which a fabric was very speedily and very skilfully raised, with a view of showing that it would be a great advantage if the Government were to absorb what were termed the enormous profits of the Bank. He was of opinion that such a scheme would be most dangerous to the country, and most disadvantageous to all parties. But if these propositions were allowed to be agitated without any contradiction being given to them, supported, as it was alleged, by high official authority on the subject, there was no doubt they might spread throughout the country, and inflict great inconvenience, if not great danger, on the best interests of the State. He had a right to say that there was no intention on the part of the Government to alter the present state of the arrangements between the Government and the Bank of England.

EARL GRANVILLE thought that the noble Marquess, notwithstanding his pledge, had jumped as rapidly to his conclusions as the learned Judge or the noble Lord. The noble Lord had given an elaborate descrip

1225 The War with Russia- {JUNE 2, 1854} Blockade of the White Sea. 1226

tion of a plan for separating the Bank of England from the Government, which, he said, would lead to disastrous consequences, and he (Earl Granville) merely replied that he was totally ignorant of any such plan being in existence, or approved of by the Government. Upon this the noble Marquess jumped up and said that he was satisfied, from this formal declaration on the part of the Government, that they had not the slightest intention ever to disturb, in a greater or less degree, the existing arrangements between the Government and the Bank. Now, he (Earl Granville) begged to limit himself to the statement he had already made, and to leave unfettered the action of the Government in respect to any future arrangements that might be made for the public advantage.

they really had any chance of bringing the war in which they were engaged to a speedy and satisfactory termination, it must be mainly by the force of the fleets and the pressure which we could apply by their means to all parts of the Russian empire, and not by merely military operations, however brilliant. The question of blockade, then, was almost the most important that the attention of the Government could be directed to. On the 22nd of last month it was declared that information, though not official, had been received that an effective blockade had been established in the Baltic; but he was informed that letters had arrived from St. Petersburgh and Riga, stating, that up to the 25th ultimo there were free ingress and egress there for vessels. However, it had been announced by the Government that there was to be an efficient blockade in the Black Sea and Baltic; but the blockade of Archangel was a matter of quite as much importance and comparatively easy of execution. generally understood that three of our ships of war had recently sailed to the White Sea, and he considered that they had gone to establish the blockade of Archangel, because three ships of war were amply suffiLORD MONTEAGLE said, that he had cient for the purpose, the Russians having not imputed to the Government the inten- no force there, and the entrance to the port tion of altering the arrangements between being extremely narrow. It was true that them and the Bank, for he was perfectly there was another port of Russian comconvinced they never could have enter- merce in the White Sea-the port of tained such an intention; he had merely | Onega-but that was only used for the said that it had been imputed to the Go-export of timber; whereas, from Archvernment that they had some such intention, and his object was to show to those who urged upon the Government to take a step of that kind the inconvenience and danger of the course they recommended.

THE MARQUESS OF CLANRICARDE said, that, whatever might be the intentions of the Government at any future period, the clear terms used by the noble Earl gave him a right to conclude that at the present moment the noble Earl was not aware of any intention on the part of the Government to alter the existing arrangements between the Government and the Bank.

The noble Lord having withdrawn the latter portion of his Motion, the Motion was agreed to.


OF THE WHITE SEA-QUESTION. THE MARQUESS OF CLANRICARDE wished to put a question to Her Majesty's Government, arising out of a Report of what took place last night in another place, and relating, in his opinion, to a matter of the very greatest political and national importance. He had read that afternoon, to his great surprise, that the right hon. Gentleman the First Lord of the Admiralty had publicly stated that the Government had come to the determination that there was to be this year no blockade of the port of Archangel. It seemed to him that, if

It was

angel was exported all the produce of the northern provinces of Russia, and of a wonderfully fertile territory. It would be easy, then, in this quarter to apply a very important pressure so as to cause the Russian population to manifest to their Government that they felt in a very sensible manner the inconveniences of the present war. He was told about a fortnight ago that information had been sent to Dutch merchants at Amsterdam of the determination of our Government not to blockade Archangel; but he did not believe that any such determination had been come to by the Government or had been announced. But this was certain, because it was known to the whole commercial world, that a great many ships had been chartered by Dutch merchants for Archangel to bring away Russian produce. This, then, would be carrying on war not against Russia, but against British merchants, for while Russian merchants would thus be able to dispose of their produce, and we should be


The War with Russia- {LORDS Blockade of the White Sea. 1228 able to get all that we wanted from Iol- | been able to ascertain what had really land, the English merchants would be the fallen from him. I am, therefore, totally only parties debarred from the advantages unable to answer my noble Friend's quesof the trade. He had heard it said, that tion as to what statement was made in the it would be hard to prevent the people of other House, except from my knowledge Holland from getting their usual supply of of the policy and determination of the Gorye from the northern ports of Russia; but vernment. I do not complain of the quesif we did not do so, we should be giving to tion being put to me by my noble Friend Russia an advantage which no belligerent on the ground of inconvenience to the Goever before gave to another. Besides that, vernment, because, as I have often said, by so acting we should be giving to Hol- there are, in matters of this importance, land and Germany a direct inducement for higher and greater interests than the condesiring, not a cessation of the war, but venience of the Government. It is of great its continuance. This was certainly a very importance that the public should be accumistaken policy. This country must make rately informed of the real state of the the war felt by its inconveniences, for it was case, and they are liable to be prejudiced by that means only we should eventually in forming an opinion from the fact of a put a stop to it; for he had no hesitation question being put to the Government to in affirming as a certainty that, when the which circumstances render it impossible Russian population felt the war to be such to give a distinct and categorical answer. an evil as it was in the power of this coun-I have not had any opportunity of commutry to make it to them, they would find nicating with my right hon. Friend, but I means to enforce peace upon their Govern-have no doubt that what he said was that ment much sooner than it would ever be established by feats of arms, however brilliant. He trusted, therefore, that he should be told that there was no determination whatever on the part of the Government not to blockade Archangel, but that the utmost power of the country would be brought to hear to damage and impede in every possible way the trade of Russia. He had doubts whether it would not be wise to prohibit altogether the entrance into this country of Russian produce, such as tallow and hemp, which he understood was easily distinguished from the corre sponding produce of other countries. This would cause a pressure on the Russian population which they would feel very sensibly.

Archangel was not at present blockaded. In all probability, the person who put the question to my right hon. Friend was ignorant of the usual course pursued in cases of blockade, or was actuated by the desire of having his name placed in the newspapers as having put a question to the Government on the subject, or he might have answered the question himself, because no blockade is instituted unless a notification has appeared in the Gazette, and therefore the hon. Member might have spared himself the trouble of putting a question to my right hon. Friend. My right hon. Friend, I have no doubt, stated that Archangel was not blockaded, and, although I have not been able to learn from himself the extent to which his answer THE DUKE OF NEWCASTLE: Your went, he may have added that it had been Lordships will feel that there is consider- determined in conjunction with the French able inconvenience in putting questions of Government, for reasons which I cannot, this kind without sufficient previous notice; consistently with my duty, explain, not at and the inconvenience is greatly increased present to blockade Archangel. How long when the question put has reference to that determination may continue is a difwhat passed in the other House of Parlia- ferent matter, and I am sure that I shall ment. I have a right somewhat to com- be excused from giving an answer upon plain that my noble Friend should have that point. The question has been maput the question under the peculiar circum-turely considered, and, after that mature stances of the case. I hold in my hand a note addressed to me by him, and dated "four o'clock," which, from accident, was not delivered to me until I arrived in this House. Under these circumstances, I informed my noble Friend that I had been unable to communicate with my right hon. Friend the First Lord of the Admiralty in the other House, and consequently had not The Marquess of Clanricarde

and careful consideration, Her Majesty's Government and the Government of France arrived at a mutual decision not at present to institute the blockade of Archangel; and I trust that my noble Friend will feel assured that that mutual decision was not arrived at upon light grounds. With regard to the future, I can only say that, if it should be determined to institute a

{JUNE 2, 1854 for the War Department. 1230


1229 The Secretary of State blockade, a notification will appear in the of Newcastle) with regard to the validity proper form in the Gazette. I may also of a blockade. The case is this, that add, that my noble Friend may rely that there is no doubt that Admiral may no blockade will be instituted by the pre-establish a blockade in any part of the sent Government, or, I hope, by any Go- world in which he may find himself carryvernment, other than an effective blockade, ing on war; but what is essential is, that, and that there is not the slightest inten- as soon as any blockade comes to the tion, on the part of the Government, of in- knowledge of the Government, they are stituting what are commonly called mere bound to insert due notification of it in the paper blockades. Gazette, or, if they fail to do so, they LORD BEAUMONT thought that, on render themselves liable to demands for the principle laid down by the noble Duke, indemnity on the part of those persons who that no blockade could be instituted unless may have suffered loss, or who have been a notification had previously appeared in put to inconvenience through ignorance of the Gazette, it would be impossible to the existence of such a blockade. With carry on war. He maintained that if any regard to the apprehensions of the noble Admiral, instructed to carry on a war, Lord as to the manner in which the war is found it conducive to the success of any to be carried on, he may set himself at operation to blockade any particular port, rest-he may depend that no war was ever he had a perfect right to do so, although undertaken which was carried on with the port might be so situated that it would more vigour or with more determination take a month or two months before a notice than this will be, as far as our power could appear in the Gazette. [The EARL admits of it, without, however, acting upon of ABERDEEN: Hear, hear!] He was any such horrible notions as firing upon all glad to perceive that he had not been mis- parts of a town, even upon the hospitals taken, but he had certainly understood the-without any such proceedings nothing noble Duke to say that a notice must appear in the Gazette before a port was blockaded. He must own, that having heard that it was not the intention of the Government to order at present the blockade of Archangel, he deeply regretted such an announcement. He did not ask-indeed he was not entitled to ask-the rea sons for such a resolution, but he regretted that any reasons existed to prevent the Government adopting every method for annoying the enemy. To confine the war to one point, and to leave the rest of Russia the power of carrying on its trade, was not calculated to procure a speedy peace, and to act upon such a system was injurious to the country, and also, in his opinion, to the cause of humanity. To procure the advantage of a speedy peace the war ought to be carried on effectively and energetically, and there ought not to be polite notes exchanged between Admirals commanding ships and governors of cities, saying that such and such parts of a city would be spared and that such and such prisoners would be given up. It ought to be left to the judgment of the Admirals in what manner they should carry out the instructions they received, but those instructions ought to be to do as much harm as possible to the enemy.

THE EARL OF ABERDEEN: The noble Lord has, I think, entirely misapprehended what fell from my noble Friend (the Duke

will be left undone by the Government to arrive at that conclusion which will best be produced by the vigorous conduct of the war.

THE DUKE OF NEWCASTLE: Perhaps, as it is most desirable that it should not appear to the public that different answers are given to the same question in this and in the other House of Parliament, the nob e Earl will permit me to say a few words before proceeding to another subject. I stated, when I answered the question of my noble Friend, that I had not been able to have any communication with my right hon. Friend who made the statement in the other House on the subject to which the question referred; but I have since been in communication with my right hon. Friend, and I find that what I have already stated this evening was in entire conformity with the facts of the case. My right hon. Friend did not say that it had been determined that there should be no blockade of Archangel, but what he stated was, that it was decided that for the present there should be no blockade; that that determination had been arrived at after communication with the French Government, and that no alteration would be come to except by the same means.


1231 The Secretary of State {LORDS} for the War Department.


to give. He (the Earl of Ellenborough) could not doubt that he would receive the full support of his Colleagues and of Parliament, and that it would be the determination of Parliament and of the country that the responsibility of the conduct of the war should rest upon one head, as the power rested in one hand, and that no one, whatever office or position he might fill, should interfere in any manner to impede the public service. It would not do in difficult times to have men in office of whom he might express himself in these terms— injussu interpretari qui malunt; "indeed, divided authority was as undesirable to a Minister as cordial support was the reverse. While he said that, he must at the same time express a hope that it would not be considered necessary to create any new establishment of civil clerks to carry on the duties of this new department. He had no faith in the public competition of clever young gentlemen who passed a good examination, and who on that account were placed in offices of the highest class. What the Secretary for the War Department wanted was, not an office of civil clerks, but a military staff. Every duty which he had to perform could be better performed by military officers placed under him, having entirely his confidence, selected from the various departments of the service-engineers, artillery, cavalry, and infantry-men who had served in various parts of the globe, and were acquainted with the actual duties of a war; the business could be better managed by them than by any civil clerks it would be possible to find. There would be one other advantage in carrying on the business of the new department by officers of the Army; they might be sure that they would preserve the most absolute secresy. It was a matter of honour with an officer to keep absolutely secret anything that was confided to him. He would also venture to suggest for the consideration of the Government that he thought it would be most undesirable to make any military change that could be avoided; but might it not be advisable to place under the Secretary for the War Department all the military in England, as well as the military abroad? He believed that at the present moment the disposition of the regular troops in England was within the power, not of the Secretary for the War Department, but of the Secretary of the Home Department; and on all occasions where the Secretary for the War Department might think it necessary to send troops to

he wished to put a question to the noble
Earl at the head of the Government relat-
ing to a subject which had been brought
under their Lordships' consideration by a
noble Earl (Earl Grey) on a previous occa-
sion--it was the subject of the constitution
of the various military departments to
which was intrusted the conduct of the
war. There had been for some time re-
ports which had appeared under circum-
stances which entitled them to great consi-
deration-indeed, to belief-that it was the
intention of Her Majesty's Government,
after considering the subject, to propose
that the office of Secretary of State for
War should be separated from the depart-
ment of the Colonies. If that announce-
ment were true-and he trusted it might
prove so it was to him a subject of great
gratification, and he could congratulate the
country on a measure which might materi-
ally influence the conduct of this war. He
would also venture to congratulate the
noble Duke now at the head of the two
departments-indeed, to offer him double
congratulations-in the first place, that he
would be able for the future to devote his
whole and undivided attention to what was
the most important subject that could be
committed to any man-the conduct of a
war; and, in the second place, that he
would escape
the annoyance of being con-
nected with the Colonial Department. Upon
that subject he must say that, although
there should be one Member of the Govern-
ment to whom solely would be confided the
conduct of the war, and who would solely
be responsible for all details--for that, he
trusted, was understood-still, he did not
desire that, at the present moment, any
further step should be taken. He thought
they had better pause that it would not
do to break up a number of different de-
partments in the State of very great import
ance, all connected with the conduct of the
war, and that it was most advisable at the
present moment, when they were in the
presence of an enemy, to take no step
which was not absolutely necessary-to
make no movement in the way of change
which was not dictated by clear experience
and urged upon them by most important
considerations. It would be for the Se-
cretary of State who would have the sole
conduct of the war to see whether there
was any conflict of authority, and to com-
municate at once to his Colleagues, and, if
necessary, to Parliament, the existence of
any obstacle to the execution of those
orders which he might think it necessary
The Earl of Ellenborough

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