Imatges de pàgina

was the case, it became an honoura. Mr Stuart Wortley and Mr Wil-
ble and proud feeling in the people, berforcesupported the motion, though
with such impression on their minds, without wishing to throw any re-
to say, “ We will stand by this wo- proach upon the Queen for rejecting
man, because she is an ill-used wo- the conciliatory proposition, of which
man.” If her Majesty had been re- they had been the bearers. The for-
ceived here as Queen, till it was de- mer did not blame her Majesty for re-
cided by law that she was not Queen, jecting their mediation; by no means,
with all due honours because if her she had full liberty to do so; on the
head were struck off next week, still, contrary, he admired, and no man of
while it remained on her shoulders, feeling could refrain from admiring,
it was the head of the Queen—the the magnanimity with which this il-
tone of the country would not have lustrious female had acted, not only
been altered, and the existing state upon this, but upon all other occa-
of things would not have taken place. sions. Feeling still, however, all the
But when the people saw an attempt evils of the inquiry, he thought that
made to whisper away her character those of omitting it would be still
-when they saw the noble lord co- greater. An adjournment for six
ming down with his green-bag, which months, or in other words for ever,
irritated them still more, and heard could never satisfy the House, the
him declaring that he would bring country, or either of the illustrious
no direct charge, but that there was individuals, who were parties to it.
something very dreadful in that bag, Mr Wilberforce conceived that the
they became quite certain that some course taken by her Majesty was ow.
foul play was intended against the ing to her own high and proud feel-
Queen. It was impossible not to look ing, and not to the instigation of her
with apprehension to the scenes, dis- legal advisers. If the House had been
closures, and investigations, with unanimous in the vote of Thursday,
which they were now threatened. But it might have saved the trouble of
it was possible yet to avoid this evil, farther discussion. The honourable
and to tranquillize the country. It member lamented the manner in
was to be done, however, only by which the great law of God and na-
a change of administration, and, so ture was trifled with in the statute
help him God, the question would relating to the royal marriages. He
never be adjusted, nor tranquillity re- thought it better that the investiga-
stored to the country, till then. He tion should originate in the House of
declared to God that he made this Lords.
observation with no view to office. The motion was finally carried by
Any public proceeding, instituted by a majority of 195 to 100.
the present administration, could not
be regarded but as an unfair and un- All obstacles to the operations of
just proceeding. If the Queen could the Lords' Committee being pow re-
not be irrefragably convicted of guilt moved, that body immediately pro-
and criminality, ministers must stand ceeded to the exercise of its functions.
convicted of the highest guilt and A few days necessarily elapsed before

the result could be produced-an in. Lord Nugent, Lord Milton, Mr terval which was passed by the public Hobhouse, Mr Denman, and Mr Scar- in a state of eager curiosity, though, lett, all spoke against the motion of on the part of the majority, with a full Lord Castlereagh.

preparation to hold it at nought when

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ever it should appear. Meantime no solemn inquiry; which it appears to intermission took place ir the ad- the committee may be best effected in dresses which poured in to the Queen, the course of a legislative proceeding, expressing the most full conviction of the necessity of which they cannot but her innocence, and comparing her to most deeply deplore.” to the most illustrious heroines of ancient and modern times. At length, The reading of the report was folon the 4th July, the Earl of Harrow- lowed up by Lord Liverpool, with a by submitted to the House the fol- notice that he would to-morrow introlowing report :

duce a bill relative to the subject.

Earl Grey rose to make a few ob“ By the Lords' Committee, ap- servations. The difficulty and danger pointed a secret committee to examine of the case appeared to him to be inthe papers laid before the House of creased in an immense degree by the Lords on Tuesday the 6th of June reading of this report. The case of last, in two sealed bags, by his Ma- the person accused, coming before the jesty's command, and to report there. House through a committee of their upon, as they shall see fit, and to Lordships, could no longer be consiwhom have been since referred seve- dered as in an unprejudiced state. A ral additional papers, in two sealed charge of a more abhorrent nature nebags, relative to the subject matter of ver could be made against any indihis Majesty's most gracious message vidual, to say nothing of its being of the 6th of June last.-Ordered to brought against a Queen. If this report,

charge rested upon evidence which “ That the committee have exami- could be supported, it certainly formned, with all the attention due to so ed a case for indispensable inquiry; important a subject, the documents and he agreed that it was for the howhich have been laid before them, and nour of the Crown, and the welfare of they find that those documents con- the country, that the inquiry should tain allegations supported by the con- proceed in the way calculated to securrent testimony of a great number cure the honour and interests of both. of persons in various situations of life, How could ministers, believing such and residing in different parts of Eu- conduct, allow it to go on for years, rope, which deeply affect the honour be willing to continue her Majesty in of the Queen, charging her Majesty the character of Queen, and to have with an adulterous connexion with a her introduced at foreign courts? In foreigner, originally in her service in the unprecedented situation in which a menial capacity; and attributing to her Majesty was now placed, he her Majesty a continued series of con- thought she could lose nothing by the duct highly unbecoming her Majes- most speedy trial, instead of having ty's rank and station, and of the most such a charge hanging for months over licentious character.

her head. He thought that justice re“These charges appear to the com- quired that her Majesty should be mittee so deeply to affect not only the forthwith furnished by ministers with honour of the Queen, but also the dig- . a distinct statement of the charges, nity of the Crown, and the moral feel- and a list of the witnesses on whose ings and honour of the country, that authority they were made. in their opinion it is indispensable that The Earl of' Harrowby regretted as they should become the subject of a much as any man the necessity of the

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proceeding ; but if ministers were sing the charges to be true, they were
guilty of injustice, their Lordships compelled to bring them forward.
were accomplices in it. If there were The Marquis of Buckingham de-
any part of the conduct of his Ma- fended the report, stating, that it ex-
jesty's ministers to which they could pressed the unanimous opinion of the
look back with more particular satis- committee.
faction than another, he believed it to The debate concluded with Lord
be that which had been employed in Holland strongly censuring the con-
endeavours to avoid, by some com- duct of ministers the course of whose
promise, the public discussion of the proceedings was from the beginning
present subject. He thought if there wrong-highly inconsistent-highly
were any occasion on which a public dangerous-derogatory from the ho-
man might be excused for making nour of the Crown, and injurious to
some sacrifice of consistency, it was the best interests of the country. He
for such an object. The present re- dissented entirely from the whole
port could be regarded in no other course of proceeding.
light than the verdict of a grand jury. Considering how deeply this report

The Earl of Carnarvon pointed out struck at the honour and welfare of the difference between the present the individual concerned, it could not proceeding and the verdict of a grand but be expected, that, even in a dispojury. He made also severe strictures sition much less ardent, it should kinon the intention of celebrating the co- dle an extraordinary agitation. That ronation at such a period as the pre- which it produced was manifested by

an immediate and decisive step. On The Earl of Darnley condemned the following day, Lord Dacre, now ministers, particularly in respect to the regular channel for such commuthe affair of the Liturgy.

nications, presented the following peEarl Grey, in answer to Lord Har- tition :rowby, still insisted, that if those advisers had before them evidence of the « CAROLINE REGINA Queen having been guilty of an adul- “ The Queen, observing the most terous intercourse with a foreigner, extraordinary report made by the seaggravated by a long course of licen- cret committee of the House of Lords, tious conduct- if that charge was now lying upon the table, represents true, the case was one which, consist- to the House, that she is prepared, at ently with the dignity of the Crown, this moment, to defend herself against and the welfare of the country, ad- it, as far as she can understand its immitted of no compromise whatever. port. Her Majesty has also to state,

The Earl of Liverpool defended that there are various weighty matters anew the conduct of ministers in en- touching the same, which it is absodeavouring to avoid a public investi- lutely necessary, with a view to her gation ; but when the Queen came to future defence, to have detailed in the the country—when her conduct was present stage of the proceeding. The forced upon public attention-when Queen, therefore, prays to be heard no medium was left between admitting this day, by her counsel, regarding her to the exercise of all her rights such matters.” and privileges, and allowing her full influence on the morals of the

country; Lord Liverpool thought the advice -and proceeding against her, suppo- which must in this instance have been


given to the illustrious petitioner, was but since it was granted then, the of a most extraordinary nature. She claim here was much stronger. Conapplied to be heard in the present sidering the deep sympathy taken in stage by counsel ; but their Lordships her Majesty's situation-considering were, as yet, in no stage whatever of the agitation into which the public the proceeding. It was impossible that mind was thrown by the proceedings counsel could be heard till after the —though it would be far from his infirst reading of the bill. As to the re- clination to advise their Lordships to port, neither her Majesty nor any yield to any popular clamour, he did other person out of that House could think that, when such a claim on their regularly have any knowledge of it. justice as that which now came from

Lord Dacre strongly urged the her Majesty was made, it could not granting of the petition. Considering be either for public interest or the hothe high station of the illustrious pe- nour of the House to stand too much titioner—considering the delicate si- upon precedents. tuation in which she was placed-and The Lord Chancellor considered considering also the interest which the proposition as totally out of the these proceedings had excited from question. He would be glad to know one end of the country to the other, where, in the history of Parliament, he trusted that their Lordships would it was to be found that counsel were pause before they excluded her Ma- ever admitted to be heard against a jesty from making any statement im- measure of some kind or other not portant to her honour and character, yet submitted to their Lordships, but perhaps even to her life!

which some noble Lord was expected Lord Ellenborough replied, whe- to propose. Let the subject who pether a petition came from a Princess, titioned be high or low, he would ask or one of the lowest subjects in the their Lordships, whether they were kingdom, their Lordships were bound prepared to hear counsel against the to act according to the principles of privilege of a peer to present a bill? equal justice. He would vote against He conceived that their Lordships, as the petition for this reason that it well as juries, were perfectly qualified asked that which, if prayed for by any to dismiss from their minds every other individual in the country, would thing that passed in a preliminary innot be granted.

quiry. Earl Grey felt this to be a case of The Marquis of Lansdowne and peculiar difficulty, and did not wish Lord Holland spoke in favour of the that any undue advantage should be petition ; Lord Redesdale and the granted to her Majesty. The case, Marquis of Buckingham against it. however, was very peculiar. It might The proposition was finally negatived become a case of divorce, without any without a division. of those previous proceedings in the ecclesiastical courts which made other This question being decided, noparties acquainted with the particu- thing was left to delay the grand and lars of the charge and evidence. Her long-impending step—the introducMajesty might claim the right to do tion of the bill of Pains and Penalties. something to counteract the unfa. Lord Liverpool immediately rose and vourable impression which the re- proposed it. After the most delibeport had produced. He had doubted rate consideration, he could discover the propriety of hearing counsel on no other course in which he could the appointment of the committee;

Impeachment was, by the highest legal authorities, considered he wished a copy of the bill to be forinapplicable. Its adoption would cer- warded in the most respectful manner tainly have hazarded the loss of the to each of the illustrious individuals measure from the mere wrong course concerned. He would wish to delay pursued. From the judicial habits of the second reading for a few days, and this House, and from the analogy of would be disposed to fix on that day the present to a divorce case, the fortnight as a proper and reasonable House of Peers appeared the proper time. It was most satisfactory to requarterin which any proceeding should fect, that the country had no prececommence. Ministers wished, as fardents of a case similar to the present, as possible, to avoid prejudicing the during a period of 200 years, except case of the accused party. He was, in the instance of one individual, who however, free to say, that the bill on never came over to this country. their Lordships'table, founded on the There had not been a Queen in this allegations contained in the report, country during that time, against did tend to create some degree of whom even a whisper of shame had prejudice. He was ready to admit been raised to affect her character or that fact-it was an unavoidable con- sully her reputation. There was no sequence; for there was nothing in longer an opportunity of avoiding the the form of justice, though it went to shame and scandal of this investigaprotect an individual who was accu- tion, whatever its result might be. sed, that did not tend to excite some Nothing now remained for their Lord. prejudice. Even where a person was ships to do but to pursue a clear and taken into custody, and brought be- straight-forward course-to perform fore a magistrate on oath, though the their duty boldly-determined, whatadministration of the oath was meant ever public clamours might exist, to to assist the individual accused, still it take care that public justice was sawent, to a certain extent, to raise a tisfied. prejudice against him. It was a cir. The Clerk then read the bill. cumstance that arose out of the very nature of justice itself. He would now “ A Bill entitled an Act to deprive her state to their Lordships what the na- Majesty, Caroline Amelia Elizabeth, ture of the bill was. It was a bill of of the Title, Prerogatives, Rights, pains and penalties ; and its preamble Privileges, and Exemptions, of would point out with as much parti- Queen Consort of this Realm, and cularity as was ever displayed in any to dissolve the Marriage between criminal case, and as much as the na- his Majesty and the said Caroline ture of the circumstances required,


Amelia Elizabeth. the offences charged against the ac- “ Whereas, in the year 1814, her cused party. It had been endeavour- Majesty, Caroline Amelia Elizabeth, ed to frame the bill in a manner that then Princess of Wales, and now should not bear more severely on the Queen Consort of this realm, being at illustrious personage accused, than Milan, in Italy, engaged in her service, the safety of the state and the ends in a menial situation, one Bartolomo of substantial justice required. With Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergarespect to any question relative to a mi, a foreigner of low station, who had provision for the illustrious personage, before served in a similar capacity : their Lordships must be aware that it And whereas, after the said Barcould not originate in that House. As tolomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo to the more immediate proceedings, Bergami, had so entered the service of

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