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that the charge arising from the payınent of the interest or sinking fund for the reduction of the principle of the debt incurred in either kingdom before the union, shall continue to be separately defrayed by Great Britain and Ireland respectively. That for a number of years to be limited, the future ordinary expenses of the united kingdom, in peace or war, shall be defrayed by Great Britain and Ireland jointly, according to such proportions as shall be ese tablished by the respective parliaments previous to the union; and that after the expiration of the time to be so limited, the proportions shall not be liable to be varied, except according to such · rates and principles as shall be in like manner agreed upon previous to the union.
Eighth, That for the like purpose it would be fit to propose that all laws in force at the time of the union, and that all the courts of civil or ecclesiastical jurisdiction within the respective kingdoms, shall remain as now by law established within the same, subject only to such alterations or regulations from time to time as circumstances may appear to the parliament of the united kingdom to require.
“That the foregoing resolutions be laid before his Majesty, with an humble address, assuring his Majesty that we have pro- -*ceeded with the atmost attentioir to the consideration of the important objects recominended to us in his Majesty's gracious message:
" That we entertain a firm persuasion that a complete and entire union between Great Britain and Ireland, founded on equal and liberal principles, on the similarity of laws, constitution, and government, and on a sense of mutual interests and affections, by promoting the security, wealth, and commerce, of the respective kingđoms, and by atlaying the distractions which have unhappily pre. vailed in Ireland, must afford fresh means of opposing at all times."; an effectual resistance to the destructive projects of our foreigo and 3 domestic enemies, and musť tend to confirm and augment the stability, power, and resources of the einpire.
Impressed with these considerations, we feel it our duty, humbly to lay before his Majesty such propositions as appear to us best
calculated to form the basis of such a settlement, leaving it to his Majesty's wisdom, at such time and in such manner as his Majesty, in his parental solicitude for the happiness of his people, shall judge fit, to communicate these propositions to his parliament of Ireland,, „with whom we shall be at all times ready to concur in all such measures as may be found most conducive to the accomplishment of this great and salutary work. And we trust that, after full and mature consideration, such a settlement may be framed and established, by the deliberate consent of the parliaments of both kingdoms; ás may be conformable to the sentiments, wishes, and real inte tests of his Majesty's faithful subjects of Great Britain and Ireland, and may unite them inseparably in the full enjoyment of the blessings of our free and invaluable constitution, in the support of the honour and dignity of his Majesty's crown, and in the preservation and advancement of the welfare and prosperity of the whole British empire." The question was carried for the Speaker's leaving the chair,
Noes and the House then went into a committee upon the resolutions.
April 19, 1799. The House having resolved itself into a Committee of the whole House, bo take into consideration the report of the secret committee telative to seditious societies,
Mr. Pitt rose, and spoke in substance as follows :
It is not my intention, Sir, on the present occasion, to detain the committee by enlarging upon the circumstances stated in the report, which is now the subject of consideration. Those circumstances detailed in the report itself are so important in their nature, and so plainly and forcibly stated, that to dwell upon them would be to weaken rather than to add to the impression they are calculated to make. I shall content myself, therefore, with laying before you the outline of the measure, which it is my in
tention to propose as the ground of the resolutions of the committee, on which, if they should meet its concurrence, will follow a motion, that the chairman be instructed to move for leave to bring in bills to enact their provisions. Should these propositions be adopted, another opportunity will occur for the discussion of their details. 'This much, bowever, I think I may venture to say, that there cannot be two opinions as to the necessity of continuing and enforcing those wise and salutary measures of precaution to which we are indebted for our safety, and by which we have been enabled to repress the efforts of the most desperate, wicked, and cruel conspiracy against our liberties, our constitution, and our peace, that is to be found in the history of this country. From the report of the committee, we perceive that among other things the utmost advantage has resulted from that great measure of precaution, the act empowering his Majesty to secure and detain persons suspected of conspiring against his person and government-ameasure which has been attended with the most beneficial effects at moments the mostcritical, in breaking up the de. signs of the conspirers, twhen they approached nearly to the period of their execution. Previous even to the report, in which its necessity is so satisfactorily developed, the facts notorious to the world would have been sufficient to justify an application to parliament for prolonging the duration of the act suspending the habeas corpus. Following up at the same time the suggestions in the report; the first motion I shall have the lionour to propose will be to continue that measure, at the same time, adding to it a provision to render it more effectual, a proxişion founded, as well upon its general propriety, as upon the particular circumstances which the report has explained.' What I allude' to is, to adopt a regulation empowering his Majesty to transfer persons arrested under this act to any place within the kingdom which may be deemed most eligible. I do not imean to enlarge upon the policy of such a provision. I shall'orily observe, that it will be notorious to the committee, from the report under consideration, and from another report lately presented to the house, that one of the principal features of that conspiracy which has been prosecuted in this country, but more particularly in the sister kingdom, where it actually led to so much calamity and bloodshed, has been that the designs of the conspirators have continued to be conducted under the direction of persons in custody on charges of being its authors, or guilty upon their own confession. How far the case here has been similar to that I have stated, it is needless at present to enquire. It will hardly be denied, that circumstances are such as to require that all doubts should be removed respecting the power of his Majesty to transfer persons in this situation to the most safe and proper place of confinement, and likewise to enable government to detain in custody here persons arrested in Ireland in the circumstances I have described. This provision arises out of the message received from his Majesty, respecting the persons brought from the sister kingdom, to be detained in confinement in Great Britain.
I feel likewise that it will not be sufficient to continue and enforce the laws already adopted for our security, if we did not adopt some precaution against the particular character of the mischief against which we are called upon to guard. I allude to that point so clearly established by the most powerful body of evidence before us, the existence, of secret societies totally unknown in the history of this or any other country. Impressed with the observation in the report of the committee, that in the great struggle we maintain against jacobinism it is necessary to watch the symptoms of the malady, and to adapt the remedy to the appearance it assumes, we must feel ourselves bound to accommodate our precautions to the evil which we have discovered. It will at the same time be recorded to the honour of the British parliament, that while it did not neglect the salutary precautions wbich circumstances imperiously dictated, it did not pass beyond the bounds of that necessity; that, equally firm and temperate, it has recollected what was to be yielded to safety, and what was due to the constitution, that it isight with just discernment and moderation accommodate the precaution to the danger. . Considering the inveterate spirit and the invincible persever
ance of the enemy, with whom we have to contend, I do not think that any one measure could be warranted as sufficient to carry the constitution safe through that mighty struggle we have to maintain ; to that haven of security and peace, which after a period of exertion and of perseverance, more or less protracted, we have a confident hope of attaining. For this arduous contest, however, be it shorter or be it longer, we must be prepared; we must be determined firmly to abide by the cause we have embraced, vigorously to continue the efforts we have exerted, to follow up wisely and vigilantly the provisions which we have bitherto employed, unless we are contented to yield to the superior vigilance, energy and perseverance of an implacable enemy, the pre-eminent blessings which we enjoy.
It is the duty of parlianient, then, carefully to watch the symptoms of the malady by which we are assailed. The point which to-day seems most urgently to challenge our attention, is that of the secret societies I have mentioned, all of which possess a common distinguishing character. · Wherever they have existed, they have been animated by the same spirit, dedicated to the same objects, and kupwn by the same effects. They have spread themselves in Great Britain, in Ireland, tħroughout Europe. In the sister kingdom, we have seen them not merely threatening the mischiefs with which they are fraught, but at one moment scata tering their baleful consequences, and openly attempting the overthrow of all established government. Even bere, notwith, standing tbe prevalent loyalty of the great mass of the people, and the powerful obstacles with which they have had to contend, we have seen that invincible perseverance in a bad cause by which the spirit of jacobinism is peculiarly characterized, while in other parts of Europe, the existence of these secret societies bas uniformly been the forerunner, or the attendant of the progress of French principles and the ravage of French arms.
These societies, too, are in their nature totally repugnant to the genius of this constitution, and strange to the habits of this uation. They are clearly of foreign growth; and, while we are bound to discourage them, we can employ with the more sa