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Perfidy of government towards him. 451

the lord-lieutenant (the Earl of Harrington) in his own justification some pamphlets, which had been much censured by the dependents on government*. When he was brought before the house of commons he was merely asked whether he was the author of such and such papers? It would have been scarcely possible to have proved him so, for the printer was not to be found, and no other evidence was to be had, when Mr. Weston, the lord-lieutenant's secretary, had the astonishing and profligate impudence to produce the very papers which Lucas had left at the castle, and which, of course, could not be denied by him, had he been disposed to take refuge in that way. So much for the conduct of some courtiers in those days. As to the people, humiliated as they were at this time, yet Lucas having asserted, in various parts of his writings, the independency of Ireland, so far as related to its parliament, the managers against him were totally afraid to meet the people or Lucas on that ground, and selected such of his papers as, with much indiscreetness, perhaps coarseness of abuse, assailed particular departments of the government. Lut all was general. The heads of papers were mentioned, and no single detached paragraph attempted to be pointed out.

Mr. Latouche proceeded to the poll alone, and, after a dreadful contest with the castle in favour

Of course this was prior to the attack on him in the house of commons.

452 Testimony of Dr. Johnson in his behalf.

of Mr. Burton, was, with Sir Samuel Cooke, declared duly elected. The indignation of the court knew no bounds. A petition was presented against his return, and on the sole accusation of being joined to and influenced by Lucas, which was notoriously false, and if true could not have vacated his seat, he was voted out of it, and Mr. Burton placed in his stead. A more infamous proceeding perhaps never disgraced any house of commons. To return to Lucas. He pursued his profession in London, and having written an Essay on Waters," was honored with the support of Dr. Johnson, who, in his review of that publication, recommends him to the notice of the people of England in the following spirited and energetic manner: "The Irish ministers drove him from his native country by a proclamation, in which they charged him with crimes which they never intended to be called to the proof, and oppressed him by methods equally irresistible by guilt and innocence. Let the man, thus driven into exile for having been the friend

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And pursued it with distinguished success. He was attentive to all the duties of his profession. One instance deserves to be mentioned. So sensible was he of the many fatal mistakes that happen in mixing up medicines, from the similarity of the figure in the marks of the dram and the ounce, that the very first bill he brought into parliament after he was returned for Dublin, was one to compel the physicians of Ire land to discontinue the using of characters in their prescrip tions, and to write the words at full length, Uncias tres, drach. moduas, scrupulum unum cum semisse.

His character as a politician.

453 of his country, be received in every place as a confessor of liberty, and let the tools of power be taught in time, that they may rob, but cannot impoverish." At length he was enabled, by the interposition of some powerful interests, to return to Ireland, when, on the death of George II. he was elected for the city of Dublin, and held that truly respectable situation at the time of his death.

As a politician he was, as the Duke de Beaufort was called during the time of the Fronde at Paris, une roi des halles-a sovereign of the corporations. In the house of commons his importance was withered and comparatively shrunk to nothing; for the most furious reformer must admit that, however the representation was, in too many instances, narrowed into private interests, it still embraced the most conspicuous and useful orders in the state; where if education and knowledge are not to be found, how are they to be sought after? Lucas had, in truth, little or no knowledge as a leader in parliament, and his efforts there were too often directed against men whose perfect disregard of him left them at full liberty to pursue their arguments as if nothing had disturbed them. Self-command, whether constitutional or arising from occasional contempt, is a most potent auxiliary. His opponents were sometimes, indeed, rendered indignant; but, whether calm or angry, the battle always left him worse than before. Yet, with all this precipitancy and too frequent want of knowledge, he annexed

454

Estimate of his services.

a species of dignity to himself in the house of commons which was not without its effect. His infirmities, (for he was always carried into and out of the house, being so enfeebled by the gout that he could scarcely stand for a moment,) the gravity and uncommon neatness of his aress, his grey and venerable locks blending with a pale but interesting countenance, in which an air of beauty was sull visible, altogether excited attention; and Mr. Hardy (om whom this account is borrowed) says, he never saw a stranger come into the house without asking who he was? The surest proof of his being in some way or other formidable to ministers was the constant abuse of him in their papers The wits of Lord, Townshend's administration (there were many employed in its service) assailed him in every way that their malign vivacity could suggest. Their efforts are forgotten; his services remain. He had certainly talents, but talents unaided by cultivation. Originality is much. He raised his voice when all around was desolation and silence. He began with a corporation, and he ended with a kingdom; for some of the topics which he suggested, now nearly seventy years ago, such as the octennial bill, and other measures, were of vital magnitude to Ireland. His remains were honoured with a public funeral, and his statue (as has been already mentioned) is placed in the Royal Exchange of Dublin.

Administration of Lord Harcourt.

CHAP. XVIII.

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Account of Lord Harcourt's administrationAbsentee tax-Opposed, and why-Influence of the American revolt upon the people of Ireland -Dawning spirit of liberty--The catholics recognised as subjects-Distress of the manufac tures-Proposed relief of Irish trade meets with opposition from the commercial towns of England and Scotland--Lord Harcourt recalled -Succeeded by the Earl of BuckinghamshireFour thousand troops sent from Ireland to America-First great concession granted to catholics.

LORD Harcourt's administration was chiefly directed to the maintenance of those English measures which had been begun by his predecessor, and the effects of which now manifested themselves in another way to the nation; for, when the lordlieutenant assembled the parliament on the 12th of October, 1773, he found it necessary to discharge an arrear of 265,0001. besides imposing an additional burden of 100,000l. a year. Thus expensive was it to secure parliamentary majorities! It was thought at first, however, that his lordship meant to promote the real interests of

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