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1641" were put. Mr. James Corry, ancestor of the Earl of Belmore, obtained a good estate and a heavy mortgage in consideration of his house having been burned by the “rebels," and of his having spent £3000 in provisions and other materials for the garrison of Enniskillen. Subsequently it was found that Mr. Corry had done nothing for Enniskillen, and that his house was not burned by the Irish, but by the Protestant soldiers as a punishment for his disloyalty in saying in the town of Enniskillen that he hoped to see all those hanged that took up arms for the Prince of Orange.
The Court of Claims had disposed of 504,593 acres when the subject was taken up, as before mentioned, by the English House of Commons, who appointed a commission of their own body to inquire into the extent, value, and condition of the forfeited lands in Ireland. The report, signed by a majority of the commissioners, was presented to the House of Commons in December 1699. As the result of this, and the discussion that followed, an Act was passed, entitled “An Act for granting an aid to his Majesty by a land tax in England, and by the sale of the forfeited estates in Ireland." This Act might be called a Second Act of Settlement. Under it a board of thirteen was created, in which were vested all the lands passed away by letters patent or otherwise since the accession of William and Mary, together with all other lands to which the Crown might lay claim, as well as all reversionary and other interests arising thereout. With the exception of seven, all the king's grants were resumed; 655 denominations of lands containing 97,853 Irish plantation acres, and 1965 denominations of land without the enumeration of areas, but which Mr. Hardinge? estimated at 293,559 acres, were restored to “innocent persons," or altogether 391,412 acres of land restored to their former owners; 3793 denominations of land containing 716,374 acres were sold. This gives the total area of profitable land restored and sold as 1,107,787 plantation acres, or 46,995 acres more than the number reported to the English
111 & 12 Will. III. cap. 2. ? On “Surveys in Ireland."
CONDITION OF IRELAND IN 1700
House of Commons by the commissioners in December 1699. The latter estimated the value of the forfeited land at £2,685,130, but the actual result of the sales was only £893,119, and, assuming the relative value of the restored land to be the same, the worth of the restored land would be £487,981, or together, £1,381,100—very little more than half the value assigned to them by the commissioners of 1699.
The business part of the last of the series of confiscations being wound up, it is fitting to give a glance at the state of affairs at the closing of the confiscation ledger. This has been so well done by Lord Clare in his great speech on the Legislative Union of Great Britain and Ireland, that I cannot do better than use it for my present purpose. He first sums up in a few words the action of the British Government down to the Revolution; then giving the number of acres of arable land in the whole country, and the number of acres confiscated in each of the successive confiscations, he says: “So that the whole of your island has been confiscated, with the exception of the estates of five or six families of English blood; . . . and no inconsiderable portion of the island has been confiscated twice, or perhaps thrice, in the course of a century. The situation, therefore, of the Irish nation at the Revolution stands unparalleled in the history of the habitable world. ... The whole power and property of the country has been conferred by successive monarchs of England upon an English colony composed of three sets of English adventurers, who poured into this country at the termination of three successive rebellions-confiscation is their common title; and from their first settlement they have been hemmed in on every side by the old inhabitants of the island, brooding over their discontent in sullen indignation.” To this statement of Lord Clare might be added, that this colony never amounted to one-third of the inhabitants, even after a destructive war and famine, and that their position and power—nay, their very existencedepended on England, without whose aid they would have disappeared after a few years. In fact, the continuous pressure of England prevented the normal evolution of the country.
The era of confiscations being now closed, and a new cycle of events about to begin, it is not amiss to ask, What was the position of the people ? A great part of the energetic, intelligent, brave, and patriotic had perished in the war or died of famine and pestilence, or had become mercenaries without a fatherland in the armies of kings in whose quarrels they had no interest, leaving behind them in Ireland a broken, impoverished, and dispirited people, without money, arms, or leaders—fit materials for a race of helots, were it not that they possessed an unconquerable spirit of resistance to oppression, and a hope in the future which nothing could extinguish. Sir Richard Cox, who described the Irish about this period as they were about to enter the penal probation, was correct in his picture, but, not recognising the two qualities I have named, his prognosis has proved worthless. "The youth and gentry of the Irish," he tells us, “were destroyed in the rebellion or gone to France; those who are left are destitute of horses, arms, money, capacity, and courage. Five out of six of the Irish are insignificant slaves, fit for nothing but to hew wood and draw water." Thanks to the qualities of resistance, endurance, and hope, the Irish have shown a recuperative power and tenacity of national life not surpassed by any other race, save the Israelites.
VIOLATION OF THE TREATY OF LIMERICK-INAUGURA
TION OF REPRESSIVE LEGISLATION
SIDNEY did not succeed in averting the storm by his cowardly reversal of the policy of toleration. His secretary, Mr. Pulteney, was summoned by the English House of Commons, and examined in committee, as was likewise the notorious Dr. Dopping, Bishop of Meath. So determined was the English House of Commons to prevent the Irish from getting any benefit by the Articles of Limerick, that they impeached Sir Charles Porter and Lord Coningsby, the Lords Justices who signed the treaty, in the hope of being able to damage it in some way or other. Coningsby boldly defended himself, but the Commons decided that, though there was no evidence to sustain a charge of treason, the conduct of the Lords Justices was to be censured as illegal and arbitrary. The Commons also recommended that a new beginning should be made; so Lord Sidney was recalled, and the Parliament with which he quarrelled dissolved. Sir Henry Capel, an English member of Parliament, was selected as the new governor, and raised to the peerage. The special mission of the new governor was to
conciliate the colonists, and enable them to reduce the Irish people to the condition of serfs. At first two others, Sir Cecil Wyche and Mr. Duncombe, were associated with Capel as Lords Justices, and Porter remained as Chancellor, with the object, no doubt, of keeping up a show of toleration and a tradition of the Articles of Limerick. Wyche and Duncombe were, however, unfit for their places—they showed a disposition to govern impartially, and were accordingly denounced as Tories and Jacobites. Capel, on the other hand, took every opportunity of curtailing the rights of the Irish, and of infringing the Articles; and so Wyche and Duncombe were got rid of, leaving Capel master of the situation, as Lord Deputy.
The new Government was carried on for two years without a Parliament, but supported by the English House of Commons, whose interference at this period affords the strongest example of the dependence of Ireland upon the Parliament of England from the Revolution until 1782. The Government, becoming at length embarrassed for want of money, thought it expedient to summon a Parliament, Capel believing that he had reconciled Government and the "independent " colonists. Writing to the Duke of Shrewsbury on May 16, 1695, Capel says, “I have endeavoured with all industry to prepare matters in order to a Parliament, and do really find almost a universal disposition in the Protestants to behave themselves dutifully, without insisting on the sole right" of originating money Bills. The consideration for this “dutiful behaviour" was to be such repressive measures against the native Irish as would effectually crush and ruin them.
The bargain was carried out, the Commons voted the money, and in express words consented that the Journals of the Parliament of King James should be cancelled, and the Acts passed in it erased from the roll, “that no memorial might remain among the records of the proceedings of that assembly." 1 For this dutiful behaviour Parliament was rewarded by two Acts; one “An act for the better securing the Government by disarming Papists; " 2 the other, “An Act to restrain foreign education." 3
By the former Act every Papist, even though already holding a licence, was bound, before the first of March next following, to deliver up all arms to a justice of the peace or other head officer; any two justices might search for and seize arms. Persons suspected of concealing arms could be examined on oath; any one not discovering or delivering up arms, or refusing or hindering
17 & 8 Will. & Mary, c. 3, Irish Statutes. 7 Will. III. C. 5 (1695).
7 Will. III. C. 4.