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Scotland, Queen Anne added a secretary of state for Scotch affairs; an appointment which was afterwards discontinued. In the reign of his present majesty the number was again increased to three, by appointing one for the American department; but, in the year 1782, this office was abolished by ac of parliament.
The business of the secretary of state's office consists in receiving intelligence, conducting correspondence, preparing and issuing warrants, and managing transactions relative to the executive government of the British empire. Such of this business as relates to the British dominions, and to the four states of Barbary, is carried on in the home department, in which there is a subordinate office for the affairs of the colonies. Such, on the other hand, as relates to the foreign powers of Europe, and the United States of America, is carried on in the foreign depart. ment.
The establishment of the secretary of ftate's office in each department consists of a principal secretary of state, two under secretaries, a chief and other clerks, (ten in the home, and nine in the foreign department,) together with two chamber keepers, and a neceffary woman.
The office for plantation affairs, consists of an under secretary and three clerks. There are likewise attached generally to both departments, the offices of gazette writer, his deputy, a keeper of state papers, a collector and transmitter of state papers, two commissioners for methodizing and digesting the state papers, a fecretary for the Latin language, two decypherers, and sixteen messengers.
The duty of the under secretaries is to attend to the execution of such orders, to prepare drafts of such special letters and instructions, as occasion may require ; to transact themselves, whatever is of the most confidential nature; and generally to fuperintend the business of the office in all its branches.
The duty of the chief clerk is to distribute the ordinary official business among the clerks; to see that all warrants and other instruments are duly prepared, transmitted to the proper persons for signature, and delivered to the respective parties, when application is made, and the regular fees paid for the same; likewife that the office books are properly kept, and the public dispatches punctually transmitted. He further acts as the accountant of the office, in which capacity he receives and accounts for the secretary of state's salary, all the fees and gratuities, together with such other sums as are issued for defraying the general expence of the office. The remaining clerks, who are distinguished by the rank of
ferfior and junior in the home department, though without any distinction in the foreign, obey such orders as they receive from their superiors in office, but have no particular branches of business affigned to them.
The attendance of the under fecretaries is constant and unTemitting ; that of the chief clerk's is likewise constant; and the other clerks, though not always employed, are in daily attendance, and are expected to be ready for the execution of any business in which their superiors may think necessary to employ them.
The duty of the other inferior officers is sufficiently expressed by the titles of their offices, and is such as to occafion their constant attendance.
Each of the principal fecretaries of state has a salary of 6oool., and the secretary for plantation affairs 2000l. The profits of the under secretaries were stated, in 1986, to be nearly 1100l. per annum each. A law clerk has 300l., a precis writer, whose duty it is to make an abstract of all dispatches and other communications, has 300l., a librarian 2001., and the clerks and other oflicers have respectable but not extravagant falaries.
To the office of secretary for the home department, has been annexed, since the French revolution, a branch called the alien ofñce, which is under the perpetual controul of the two under secretaries of state, and a person especially appointed for that purpose called the superintendant of aliens. At this office all foreigners are obliged to present themselves when required; to obtain permiffion to reside in England, which may be modified by such terms as are deemed necessary, and if those conditions are broken, or if any complaint or suspicion arises, the party may be sent out of the kingdom. In this office are a chief clerk, clerk of the passports, and three allistants; and agents are stationed at Dover, Gravesend, Harwich, and Falmouth.
There is also, since the union with Ireland, a department in the secretary of state's office, peculiarly set apart for tranfacting the affairs of that part of the united kingdom.
The State Paper Office belongs alike to those of both secretaries of state. In it are a keeper of state papers, with salary of 500l., a deputy; a gazette writer with 300l. a year; a collector and transmitter of state papers, and decypherer of letters, each 500l. a year; a secretary of the Latin language with 2801. a year; and an interpreter of Oriental languages. Several of these places are finecures.
The messengers employed in these oflices, thirty-four in number, belong to the establishment of the lord chamberlain's office, and were all under the direction of the clerk of the cheque (an officer specially appointed to put the messengers upon C4
their respective waits, and to examine their bills of service,) until the year 1772, when sixteen of them were set apart from the rest, to be independent of the clerk of the cheque, and subject solely to the orders of principal secretaries of state. These sixteen are accordingly appointed by the recommendation of, and attend particularly upon, the secretaries of state; nevertheless, they continue on the lord chamberlain's lift, and are paid at his office. The messengers attend in rotation, and undertake their journies in the fame manner; the foreign journies are confined exclusively to the sixteen attached to these offices. Each mefsenger upon his appointment takes an oath before the clerk of the cheque, for the faithful discharge of his duty. They have each a salary of 451. a year, reduced by deductions to 35l. 8s., and seven shillings and fixpence per day, called board wages, while in waiting, and during home journies, but which ceases when they are dispatched upon foreign journies; also an allowance of 251. a year for keeping a horse; and are paid besides for the expence of journies, foreign and domestic, according to certain fixed rates.
The secretary of state for the home department has the cufiody of the privy signet, because the king's private letters are ligned with it. There are four clerks of the privy lignet office, who write out such grants and letters patent as pass by bill figned, or lill superscribed by the sign manual, or under the king's hand; the transcript and fealing of these with the signet is a warrant to the privy seal, as the privy seal is to the great seal. A ne exeat regro may by command be under the privy lignet, or the privy seal, as well as by the king's writ under the great seal, and the subject ought to obey it; but a warrant under the privy fignet is not sufficient for the issue of any treasure, or the discharge of a debt, much less verbal order; for it ought to be under the great feal, or at least under the privy seal. The fignet office is entirely under the direction of the secretaries of state, a clerk attending the court wherever it may happen to seside, to prepare fuch bills or letters for signature, as the king may direct, or as may be ordered by warrant from the fecretaries of state, or lords of the council. All grants prepared by the clerks of the fignct, or by the king's counfel learned in the law, for the king's hand, are returned into this office, when figned, and there transcribed again. The transcript is carried to one of the principal secretaries of state, and being sealed by him, it is called a signet, which is directed to the lord privy seal, and is his warrant for the issuing of a privy seal; but privy seals for money always begin in the treasury, whence the first warrant iflues, counter-signed by the lord treasurer, or the lords commissioners.
11. MASTER GENERAL OF THE ORDNANCE. The office of ordnance is in the tower of London, and has both a civil and a military branch. It supplies both the army and navy with all forts of military stores. When to the latter, they are delivered on board the respective ships, to the gunner, who has under him an armourer and a gunsmith. Storekeepers are establidhed at all the principal sea ports, where any of his Majeity's fhips are stationed, both at home and abroad, who receive the stores, from the board of ordnance, where there are clerks and other officers, with falaries, for expediting the business of the arıny
The master general, is deemed the principal officer in the civil branch of the orduance; in him is vested the sole power of itoring all the military magazines in the king's do:ninions, with proper munitions of war; and likewise to supply the royal navy with what they may need in his department; the parliament granting liberal supplies for this purpose. Ilc is colonci in chief of the toval regiment of artillery, and is invelled with a peculiar juriddiction over all engineers employed in the leveral fortifications in his Majesty's dominions; to him they are all accountable for their proceedings, and from him they receive their particular orders, according to the directions and commands given by the king in council. As malter general of the ordnance, he has a salary of 1500l. per annum, and the appointment of almost all the inferior officers and servants. He has a fecretary, who has a falary of 2201. a year, and under secretary, who has a salary of 1861. a year. There is a secretary to the board of ordvançe, who has a salary of 2001. and a counsel to the board, who Las an annual fee of 300.
The residue of the citablishment consists of a lieutenant geperal, a surveyor general, a clerk, a storekeeper, a clerk of the deliveries, and a treasurer, with a great number of iníerior officers, employed in the tower of London, at Woolwich, and in almost all the forts, garritons, and principal ports in the Britilh dominions,
The Lieutqnant General of the Ordnance receives all orders and warrants signed by the matter general, and from the other principal officers, and sees them duly executed ; issues orders as the occasions of the state require, and gives directions for discharging the artillery on solemn or joyful occasions. It is also his peculiar office to see the train of artillery, and all its equipage fittel for motion, when ordered to be drawn into the field, or fent on any particular service. As lieutenant general of the ordnance, he has a salary of 1100l. per annum. He is colonel en second of the royal regiment of artillery, and has a secretary, and several officers and clerks under him.
The Surveyor General inspects the stores and provisions of war, in the custody of the store keeper, and sees that they are ranged and placed in such order, as is most proper for their preservation. He allows all bills of debt, and keeps a check upon all labourers' and artificers' work ; sees that the stores received are good and serviceable, duly proved and marked with the king's mark, taking to his alliitance the rest of the officers and proof masters. He has a salary of 700l. per annum; and to assist in the bufiness, he has under hin, the proof master of England, and other inferior othcers.
The Clerk of the Ordnance records all orders and instructions, given for the government of the office; all patents and grants ; the names of all officers, clerks, artificers, gunners, labourers, &c. who enjoy those grants, or any other fee for the fame; draws all estimates for provisions and supplies to be made, and all letters, instructions, commiflions, deputations, and contracts for his Majesty's service ; makes all bills of imprest, and deben tures, for the payınent and satisfaction of work done, and provisions received in the said office; all quarter books, for the salaries and allowances of all officers, clerks, &c. belonging to the office; and keeps journals and ledgers of the receipts and returns of his Majesty's stores, to serve as a check between the two accountants of the office, the one for money, and the other for stores. He has 500l, a year salary, and 100!. a year more for being a check on the store-keeper. In his office he has a number of clerks, pinder-clerks, and ledger-keepers, who have all fixed falaries.
The Store-keeper takes into his custody all his Majesty's ordnance, munitions, and stores belonging thereto, and indents and puts them in legal security, after they have been surveyed by the surveyor general, any part of which he must not deliver, without a warrant signed by the proper officers; nor must he receive back any stores formerly issued, till they have been reviewed by the surveyor, and registered by the clerk of the ordnance, in the book of remains; and he must take care that whatever is under his custody be kept safe, and in such seadiness as to be fit for service on the most sudden demand. He has a salary of 400l. a year; and in his office are several clerks.
The Clork of Deliveries draws all orders for delivery of Fores, and sees them duly executed. He also charges by indenture the particular receiver of the stores delivered ; and, in order to discharge the storekeeper, registers the copies of all warrants for the deliveries, as well as the proportions delivered. He has a falary of 400l. per annum, and has several clerks in his office at fixed salaries. The Treasurer and Paymaster receives and pays all monies, both