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to offer one short argument in our favour. The obligation of an oath arises from religion : from the religious feelings of the party. But where a man is persuaded that his religion, or, we should say in this particular sect, is the only true one; that it is the only way to salvation ; when he is taught, consequently, nay, enjoined by those who are his immediate instructors and directors, that it is bis duty by all means to extend its empire, and to put down all other creeds and all other religious establishments, will not all this form a paramount obligation, which may effectually overrule and nullify any oath which he may take in contradiction to it? Of our own knowledge we can speak to instances where the laws of hospitality have been most grossly violated in order to make a proselyte: one of them so notorious that only delicacy towards the individuals keeps us from specifying it more particularly: where parents have had their children seduced from the faith, in which they had beca by them educated, under their very eye, and yet without the least intima. tion of what was going on, until it burst upon them like a thunderclap. Would those who could be guilty of sach base, such cruel conduct, scraple at the violation of an oath, particularly of one which they must consider as imposed upon them against their wishes, if not against their consciences ?
This is upon a supposition that the oath would be taken. But we have all the reason in the world to believe that this would not be the case. The forbearance of Protestants has been tried; it is found that no advantage is taken * of any neglect or omission; and so, not a single Romanist except one female, has taken the oaths now required, for these last ten years: alm though by not taking them, they remain liable to every penal statute which stands in our books against popery, nay those who have been perverted (for we we will not say reconciled) to Popery, and those who have perverted them, are liable to be condemned as traitors ! Yet they decline taking the oath, and making the declaration, which alone give them protection ! Indeed Mr. Canning bimself (in the debate of Tuesday, May 11th, on Sir J. C. Hippisley's motion) declared his expectation that it would be so; and he argued, from the annual act of indemnity, that the legislature itseif cared very little whether oaths were taken or not. He said (if we may trust the reports in the newspapers) that it was an oath of qualification, not of infliction / !" Certainly it is an oath of qualification; but how does that prove that the oath is not to be taken? Mr. Canning sayo,
who would think it worth while to enquire how many Protestants, within a certain number of months, had taken the oath of allegiance ?"
* We request the attention of our readers to this observation. The Protestan's are not persecutors.
And does Mr. Canning seriously mean to put the taking of oaths to the Government by Protestants and by Papists upon the same footing? Does he mean to say, will be venture to say, that there is the same reason for suspecting a Protestant, of disaffection towards a Protestant government, as there is for suspecting a Pupist? Does not Mr. Canning know that in almost all the cases where the oath of allegiance, and more especially that of supremacy, is required, it was so required in order to keep out Papists ; that the one and the other were directed against them, and not against the Protestant subjects of this realm? And that the oaths and declarations which were substituted instead of these, were imposed as conditions for admitting them to the enjoyment of that constitution to which they had made themselves strangers ? Mr. Canning must know that there is good cause why a Papist should make profession of his loyalty. The situation in which he stands with the pope makes it deces. sary. He professes to owe to the king allegiance only in part :- and that part which is withbeld, he professes to owe to a foreign power. But is this the case with Protestants ? Is there any such cause for suspicion as to them? Yet such it seems is the sort of language which is held to the legislature, even while it is enacting the taking of oaths as an essential security against the confessedly pernicious doctrines of the Romisk Church! !! In the mouth of Smelfungus, of the angelic or seraphic doctor, or any of the masters of Mr. Canning's master in theology, (the honourable baronet), such reasonings might sound well enough, but are they to be endured in a British senator : The Catholic doctrine, it seems, now is, not that oaths are to be broken, but that they are not to be taken. And in truth, this has always been the doctrine of the Pope, with respect to all oaths that derogate from his pretensions ; and upon that he grounds his other doctrine, that, if taken, they should not be kept.
We have been almost insensibly led into this consideration of Mr. Canning's arguments; because the very monstrousness of them seemed irresistibly to tall for animadversion ; but our reasoning required only, for it went only, upon the fact of his assertion and of his expectation. He is one witness, a witness against himself, that the Papists will not take the oaths, nay, will not be expected to take the oaths, which are held out as gi• ving such full and complete security ; for such is the sum of Mr. Grattan's labours, all that his protecting care had devised for ensuring the permarency and inviolability of the Protestant established Church. We ought to add indeed, and we beg Mr. Grattan's and our readers' pardon for having omitted it) that it is further to be enacted, -That no alien, nor any person who has not been resident within the United Kingdom during the last five years, shall be capable of exercising the functions of a bishop or of a dean within the United Kingdom ;-and we are rather glad to
have an occasion of noticing this, as it affords a notable evidence of the right honourable gentleman's very tender and fatherly care of the Papists, even of such as are subjects of another country. This is shewn in the very gentle and delicate nature of the infliction (we cannot call it punishment) which is to follow upon any breach of the law. If any such person (viz. alien, or who bas not resided in the kingdom during the last five years) sball presume to exercise such functions, he being thereof convicted by due course of law” [nothing done hastily in this matter) " shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanour, and" (what does the reader think?] “ shall be LIABLE to be sent out of the Kingdom; and for that purpose" [great particularity is to be used] " it shall be lawful for any one of His Majesty's principal Secretaries of State, or the Lord Lieutenant, or Chief Governor, or Chief Governors of Ireland, or his or their Chief Secretary by warrant under his hand and seal, directed to such persons as he shall think fit, to order such person, so convicted as aforesaid, to le CONDUCTED and conveyed out of this Kingdom." The gentleman is thus to be civilly conducted out of the kingdom, probably to his own country, or to the place where he has been resident for five years past, or at least, in his way to it;-no doubt well treated and lodged and fed, -as the Government does all these things liberally. But what if the gentle. man do not choose to stay there, if he come back again the next day, in the very same packet which conveyed him and the messenger ; what is to be done then? Our readers who have been used to hear of the heavy penalties which ordinarily attend any such contempt of the law in men who having been “ convicted by due course of law” evade or refuse to submit to the punishment which is ordained for the offence; who know that felons returning from transportation before the expiration of their term, incur ibe sentence of death, as did those Papists, who, having ab. jured the realm, again set their foot in it; who may be aware that even a pauper who has been removed (conveyed) “ by due course of law" from one parish to another, if he return to the first parish without having acquired a subsequent right or authority so to do, is liable to be imprisoned in the House of Correction,-our readers, surely, anticipate some: thing very serious in the case of a man who is guilty of what cannot but be considered as Aying in the very face of the Government, as evincing a determined resolution to oppose established order and to disturb the public peace. What then is to follow in such a case ? NOTHING, ab. solutely NOTHING! There is no sort of provision for the case, which yet ex erience might teach us is very likely to happen. For, as these gentlemen consider themselves, and call themselves missionary priests, sept to convert heretics, of course they will not be easily diverted from their purposes : and their own historians, as well as the records of this country, will amply sbew that not even the severest penalties will prevent their intruding into this Kingdom when sent hither by an authority which they deem paramount to all human enactments whatever. Yet such is the morbid sensibility of Mr. Grattan where Papists are concerned, that he has provided no sort of penalty for that which would considerably aggravate the original misdemeanour. Nor do we see what power there is under the act to send away a second time,-to “ conduct and convey" such a man so obstinately returning ; but that he may still stay here an. molested, if he will be content only to advise, or to practise secretly, that of which he had before been “ convicted by due course of law."
We shall perhaps return to this again. But we must pow advert, though we can do it but shortly, to Mr. Canning's " quædam alia" to use his own terms from Smelfungus, and which were added by him as a supplement to the " omnes res" or the “ fall and complete security of the other right honourable gentleman.
That which strikes us, and which will, we think, when properly stated, strike our readers, is this, that all, or most of his provisions are in effect, but not in terms, a repeal of several Acts of Parliament. It is the doing that by a side-wind, which probably the right honourable gentleman thought it better not to propose directly and esplicitly. It may be indeed that the right honourable gentleman, who has chosen to borrow his theology from Sir John Coxe Hippisley, may bave taken his information respecting the law from some doctor of equally bright attaioments in that other branch of learoing. He might not know, that, slthough not of late years put in force, there actually exists a statute, very well known by the name of the statute of Præmunire, passed in the 16th year of Richard II. (c. 5) which prohibits the brioging into the Realm any bulls or instruments from Rome, touching certain matters there mentioned under very grievous penalties ; and that this offence, farther extended to the brioging in of any bulls, is by the statute passed in the 13th year of Elizabeth (c. 2) made high treason. Now Mr. Canding, having to legislate on the same gobject, takes no notice of these statutes, but considering or seeming to consider it, as a matter perfectly open to any one, and lawful, proposes certain provisions and regulations under which such bulls and instruments shall be received. They are, it seems, to be subjected to a certain Board, created for the purpose in the first place, of further scrutinizing into the loyalty of the Romish Bishops and Deads; and afterwards of legalizing these instruments; which Board is to be composed of certain members of the Privy Council, whether Pro'testant or Popish, and certain Roman Catholic Bishops, Peers, and Commoners; of which Board, in England, a Secretary of State, and, in Ireland, the Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant is to be President. Now it will be
a matter worth consideration how far it may become a Protestant Sovoreign to give his express authority in any case to such instruments as these. Let it first be considered that by so doing he makes a solemn and complete recognition, a recognition repeated every time that any such sanction is given, of the spiritual authority of the Pope within this Realm, and over a part, (no one knows how great a part it may become hereafter, but we are repeatedly told that it is at least a fourth) of his subjects. It makes him too an instrument for giving effect to what he and every other Protestant must regard as an abomination ; to bulls ordering what we conceive to be idolatrous services; canonizations and beatifications of fallible, nay of very simple men, men whose whole merit has consisted in supporting the corruptions and abuses of the See of Rome; perhaps grievous persecutors of Protestants, such as were Pius V. and Gregory VII.; to dispensations possibly of marriages within the prohibited degrees, therefore incestuous, as we hold. These, we say, and many many nicre objections crowd upon us, but we will for the present waive them; and call the reader's attention to what we haye before treated of, the sanctions of this part also of the bill. It being, by the last clause but one, provided that any persons complying with the above provisions, and submitting any bull or instrument which they shall receive to the Board, and having it allowed by the Commissioners, shall be free and exempt from all pains and penalties whatsoever, to which they might otherwise be liable ;-thus repealing, as to persons so complying with the act, the above statutes of Richard II. and Elizabeth, we might expect that those who would not comply with provisions so reasonable, and so very mode. rate, should be left to the severity of the law. But no, here again comes in the nervous apprehension and dread of indisposing the Papists; na harshness whatever, it seems, is to be used towards them, and so, only Mr. Grattan's soft and delicate instrument of correction is to be applied. It is further enacted: (the clause is so curious and so important; so much sui generis, that we must give it at length) that “ Any person or persons so receiving any such boll, dispensation, or other instrument as aforesaid, and not so delivering or causing to be delivered as aforesaid, either the said original instrument, er such certificate of the receipt thereof, accompanied by such oath as herein prescribed, (this relates to bulls relating merely to the spiritual concerns of a party); or who shall publish or put in execution, or be wilfully and knowingly concern d ir publishing and putting in execution any such lull, dispensation or ither instrument as aforesaid, in Great Britain or Ireland, before the same shall have been properly inspected and indorsed as aforesaid; shall be guilty of a MISDEMEANOR ; and shall sa
VOL. I. [Prot. Adv. July 1813.) 3 Y