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date who had on this occasion been Callender, Captain Forbes, Mr
82d Regiment, Mr Dundas of Arnis-
and the Writers to the Signet, of the “ Friday, a grand public dinner Army and Navy, of the most emiwas given in the Assembly Rooms nent Merchants and most respectato Mr Forbes Hunter Blair, by his ble Shopkeepers, of Edinburgh, Of friends of the Conservative party, the enthusiasm, the confidence in the who turned out upon the occasion cause of truth and constitutional upwards of five hundred in number. principles, the lofty and generous Sir Francis Walker Drummond of tone which pervaded the proceedHawthornden, Baronet, was in the ings of the evening, none can have Chair. On his right were placed an idea but those who were witnesses Mr Blair, Sir George Clerk, Hon. of them. Mr Leslie Melville, Colonel Lindsay, Among many things, however, conSir George Leith, Sir John Hope, nected with this assembly, which Mr Allan of Glen, Mr Ramsay of must have inspired feelings of adBarnton, Mr Blair of Blair, Mr Ar. miration and pride in every one who buthnot, Colonel Harvey, Mr Burn loves his country, there was one
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arent. Thigs, d rich
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feature peculiarly bonourable to the it is from the revolutionary and great and important party of which movement party alone that any real it was the representative-we mean danger to ihe country is threaten. the public avowal of the generous ed, -that all the fancied evils of and patriotic principles by which its Toryism are as dust in the bafuture conduct was to be guided, the lance, compared with the sweeping determination cordially to support ruin which impends over the counthe government of the country in try, from the Dew and fatal power every measure wbich appeared to be which their policy first called into conducive towards the real happi. action,-they are so blinded by the ness and stability of the state; the memory of party prejudices,-80 distinct-disclamation of any intention appalled even by the very spectre of to embarrass their policy by unneces. Toryism, that they rush into the sary opposition, or factious union jaws of revolution to avoid it. Everywith their opponents; and the re- where they have supported the Radisolution of the Conservatives stead. cal candidates wherever they were fastly to pursue, with purity of pur- opposed to a Conservative, and pose and singleness of heart, the only wherever, from local interests, or object they had in view—the pre- other circumstances, no tool of their servation of the country from the own could be put forward with any ruin with which its institutions, its prospect of success. glory, happiness, and character, are very different indeed were the so visibly threatened.
sentiments of this distinguished asThis is no idle boast-no empty pa- sembly. No feelings of party ranrade of principle. The Conservative cour could so blind their reason or party may refer to their conduct du- pervert their sense of duty, as to ring the past, as a guarantee for the induce them for a moment to counfuture. Had they chosen to coalesce tenance the idea that they would with the Radical party throughout enter into any combination with the the country duriug the late elections, enemies of the constitution, for the a course which the insults, the slan- purpose of sbaking from their seats ders, the unmanly intimidation, theat- even those who had been the authors tacks on person and property,to which of the calamities of the country, they have been subjected through They expressed the resolutiort of the the active or passive approbation Conservatives, to act in Parliament of Ministry, would have not unnatu- as they had acted at the elections, rally dictated to meaner minds, less and to give their cordial support to solicitous to merge all individual con- Ministers, “if satisfied with the vicsiderations in their country's good, tory they bad obtained, they now prethe seats of the Ministry would not ferred to take their stand in defence have been worth a month's purchase. of the institutions of the country But will any one venture to point out against the farther schemes of the one instance of this unholy coalition? Radicals;" and their determination We say fearlessly, there is not one, neither to combine with the destrucWhere none but destructive candi- tive party in the state, nor to comdates came forward, (we thank the promise one iota of their principles Jew of the Times for teaching us that by a combination with Ministers word,) the Conservatives gave them themselves. no support. Where a Radical was op But if the expression of this posed by a Ministerialist, the Conser- straightforward and generous resovatives, as the least of two evils, gave lution was distinct, not less firm and their votes to the latter. Was this uncompromising was the avowal of conduct-we will not call it noble, for their sentiments as to the policy to every real Conservative it appears which had been hitherto pursued by only natural-was this spirit of fair Ministers, and the visibly increasing ness, this anxiety for the good of the perils which, under a course of altercountry, met by a corresponding date rashness and weakness, unpafeeling on the part of the Ministry ralleled in the history of the world, and their supporters ? No! To the they had brought upon the country. disgrace of the Ministerial party be The violations of the authority of it spoken, at this moment, though the law, and of the dignity of the even they themselves perceive that throne, which they had sanctioned
271 their recognition and support of ille Mr Blair, whose rising to acknowgal and unconstitutional associations; ledge the compliment renewed these the attacks which they had made enthusiastic tokens of approbation, on the honour of the Peerage, and stated, with a modest self-reliance, their abandonment of the Church to the grounds on which he had soli its relentless enemies of all religions, cited the honour of being the repreor of none;—these were commented sentative of Edinburgh. “I will not, on with the warm and just indigna- I trust, be accused of comparing tion which they were calculated to myself with the brilliancy of talent, inspire. This was peculiarly obvious or literary attainment, which one of in the enthusiastic reception with my late opponents possesses, or with which Sir William Rae was received the Parliamentary experience of the It was a tribute, paid partly, no other; but while I disclaim all comdoubt, to the man for his unobtrusive petition with these gentlemen in worth, but it was still more a homage these qualities, I hope I shall not be to the principle which had guided arrogating too much to myself if I his conduct in office,--that of pre- say, that, in one thing, I shall hold serving inviolable " the majesty of myself their superior-I mean in the law.”. Well might the chairman perfect independence-(loud cheers) remark, that were be called upon to being unfettered by any feeling of give advice to the present Lord Advo- past obligation, or any view of future cate, as to the line of policy he ought advantage, in conscientiously disto pursue, he could give him none so charging my duty to my country. judicious, as that of imitating in his For the present, I trust, we are far public conduct, in all points, the im- from being conquered. We can dispartiality and the firmness of Sir cover who are the truest friends of William Rae. The company felt the the people; those who would mistruth of the observation; they con- lead them by wild theories of govern. trasted the temperate yet determined ment—theories inconsistent with huassertion of the authority of the man nature-or those who would Crown, and of the supremacy of the guide them by judgment, study, and laws during the official career of the sound observation. I have been stiglate Lord Advocate, with the license matised by my opponents as the given to seditious speeches and sedi- Champion of Anti-Reform. If by tious acts during the present; the pro- that term is meant an Anti-Revolu. tection so impartially afforded to per- tionist, an opposer of what threatsons and property under the one, with ens to bear down the bulwarks of the insults and personal outrages to the constitution, and to sweep before which all who presume to differ from it every thing great, good, and glothe majority, are tamely and passively rious in the land, and which has disallowed to be subjected under the tinguished this nation above every other; and they felt that the gift of a other, and raised her to a pitch of light and sparkling eloquence, and the prosperity almost unexampled; if ingenuity of the criticor the advocate, such be the import of the title, I were but a poor compensation for glory in it, and conceive it one far the absence of the more homely but nobler than Kings can bestow. more solid qualities of his prede- (Cheers.) But it by that title is cessor.
meant that I am the opposer of any It is impossible for us to touch on improvement in our constitution, if all the numerous topics adverted to I am charged with any want of kindby the speakers.
untry of the nation strucconciples
ness or feeling of benevolence toThe Chairman, Sir Francis Walker wards all classes of my fellow-counDrummond, after the usual loyal trymen, I repel the epithet with intoasts, proposed, in a speech distin- dignation and contempt." guished alike by good taste and ad Mr P. Robertson's able address in mirable feeling, the health of their proposing" The Legitimate Influence distinguished guest, on whose high of Property and Intelligence in the character, ability, and independence, Choice of a Representative,” was he pronounced a eulogium, the jus- directed to an analysis of the worktice of which was acknowledged by ing of the Bill, in reference to the althe prolonged cheers of the assem- leged defects which it professed to bled multitude,
cure. He shewed that, under the VOL. XXXIII. NO, OCIV.
policy led by
try: ty of f the cd
Reform Bill, twenty-nine of the mem we would peculiarly wish to direct bers returned for Scotland are the the attention of our readers, was same as those returned under the the masterly address of Mr Duncan abused old system, “when there was M'Neill, in proposing as a toast no sympathy and little connexion be- “The permanency of the Established tween the representatives and the Church ;" -a speech conspicuous for people;” that under the Bill, which every one of the highest qualities of was intended to cure the fatal pro- eloquence, and which we feel it pensity on the part of Scotch mem would be equal injustice to the speakbers to swell the Ministerial ranks, er and to our readers to abridge. more members in the interest of Mi “ Till lately I did not believe that nisters had been returned than be- I should see the day when, at a meetfore; that, instead of returning mem- ing of such persons as are here asbers more closely connected with the sembled, there should exist in any great landed or commercial interests breast a feeling of serious anxiety of the country, many of the represen- for the permanency of the Establishtatives returned had not a rood of land ed Church. I had considered it as in any county whatever, while the a political axiom, that every system care of the mercantile districts and of good and stable government should burghs was generally committed to be connected with an established the tender mercies of lawyers. With system of pure religion, and that the scarcely a single exception, the mem nation should enable its poorest subbers returned, instead of being likely jects to partake, as freely as its most to become“ Parliamentary heroes”. exalted nobles, of that inestimable a strange want, it seems, which was fountain which yields to both of them felt under the old system-were per- equal consolation, and reminds both sons whose very pretensions to the of them of their common nature.title were calculated to excite inex- (Cheers.)—But those things which tinguishable laughter. He contrasted we were accustomed to regard as the exclusion of Sir George Mur- political axioms, have, in the wisdom ray with the admission of Mr Kin- of modern politics, been rejected as loch, a restored patriot,” whom the political errors, and their very antilenity of the government he now vi- quity has been held a sufficient realifies restored to that country from son for rejecting them.-(Applause.) which he had been expelled for se- —A few short years ago the permadition; the rejection of Sir George nency of the British Constitution, unClerk, to make way for that “ young impaired, was a less doubtful preaspirant for fame," Sir John Dal- diction than is now the permanency rymple ; and concluded with a spi- of the Established Church; yet withrit-stirring appeal to the principles in these few years what invasions by which the Conservative party have been made on the British Conshould be guided, and the extent of stitution !-(Cheers.)—It has with. that moral force by which it was and stood the assault; though shattered, would continue to be supported. it still exists, by the blessing of Pro
The statesman-like address of Sir vidence, rather than through the George Clerk in proposing “ The wisdom of our rulers. (Continued Health of the Conservative Citizens cheering.) But its assailants have not of Edinburgh,”—which was acknowyet relinquished their purpose, and ledged by Mr Trotter of Ballendean, strong indications have been given with his usual brevity and good that among the points marked out taste,-was listened to with deep at for early attack is the Established tention. He reviewed the conduct Church. That Church is closely of the Conservative party in Parlia- identified with the Monarchy, and if ment, in the discussions on the Re- the Monarchy means to defend itself, form Bill, and pointed out, with it must defend the Church; (cheers ;) singular clearness and force, the ir but if the Monarchy, aided by the resistible objections to it, which had friends of the Church, shall not be justified their opposition; and the strong enough, or wise enough, to impossibility of resisting, upon simi- defend the Church, the enemies of lar grounds, a demand for a farther, the Constitution will press their adan indefinite extension of popular vantage with the consciousness of suffrage. But the speech to which power, and the energy which suc
cess inspires, and the Monarchy itself reflects lustre on us, and by whose must fall a prey to their efforts.— degradation we also should be hum(Cheers.)-I cannot here enumerate bled. If the Church of England falls, all the indications of hostility to the rest assured our poorer, and, politiEstablished Church which have late- cally speaking, weaker Church, canly manifested themselves, but I may not keep its ground:-(Cheers.)-I mention some of them. In the re- regard the attacks which have been centelections, we have seen the avow- made on the Bishops as a prelude ed rivals and secret enemies of the to an attempt to separate the Church Church busy at work, almost without from the State; and although it is exception on one side, and that side possible that the revenues of the not the Conservative. That unity of ac- Church might be better apportioned tion could not be the result of chance. among its members, yet I shudder at It must have had its origin in pur- the idea of a general reform of the pose and design—and when we see it Church of England, concocted and directed towards the support of men commenced in the present political who have now in their hands a power temperament of the country, and by obtained by unsettling all establish. those rash heads and rash hands ed opinions, and exciting a feverish which have caused that temperaanxiety for change, the friends of the ment, and have already evinced Established Church might, on that too great a disposition to pander to ground alone, be excused for enter the false appetite of an intoxicated taining some anxiety as to its fate- and insatiable mob. — (Continued (Much cheering.)—But the thing has, cheering.)-I confess, however, that in a certain degree, been spoken out. what appears to me to be by far the It has been publicly stated, and I have most ominous symptom of the times, not seen it contradicted, that pledges is the success, the fatal success, which have been demanded on the subject has attended the efforts that have of Church property, and Church estas for some time been systematically blishments, cheers,)—and that, in made to unsettle the previously fixed one populous town which has lately opinions of men, to alienate their afacquired the privilege of returning fections from the established order a Member to Parliament, the cry of of things-to destroy their attach* Burn the Bible,' was one of the ment to all existing institutions, and cries of the unenfranchised sup- to lead them to believe that whatever porters of the popular and successful does not partake of the new system candidate. -- (Continued cheers.) is a remnant of corruption and imWe all know that in the neighbouring purity, and that whoever does not kingdom public odium has been ex- join in the hue and cry for change is cited and recklessly directed against an enemy to the interests of the peothe venerable Bench of Bishops, to ple, and should be dealt with as the endangerment of the personal such.-(Much cheering.)-So sucsafety of some of them, and that a cessfully has this system been pursweeping reform in the Church of sued that I can scarcely call to mind England has been openly talked of one circumstance or one name of by the avowed adherents of Govern- which England should be proud, that ment.-(Loud cheers.)—Ido not pre- has not been so reviled and abused, tend to à perfect knowledge of the
as to make every Briton of right feels economy of the Church of England, ing blush for his countrymen. but this I know, that it can boast of (Cheers.) – The British Constitution pames the most distinguished for ta- itself, admired by philosophers, laud. lent, for learning, for piety, for every ed by historians, envied by the
world, thing that can give grace and charace is treated as a rotten wreck fit only ter to any establishment;-(Cheers) to be hewn down for fagots.-(Conand I feel confident that the cul tinued cheering.) - Statesmen and ture cannot be bad which produces princes whose names are interwoven such fruits.-(Continued cheering.) with the brightest passages in British -Standing here an humble mem- story, are called to recollection, not ber of a poorer-a less splendid es to do honour to their virtuous deeds, tablishment, I regard the Church of but to cover their ashes with cold and England, not as a rival of whom we malignant calumny, and to associate should be jealous, but as a sister of with
their memories every thing that the same family, whose exaltation falsehood can make odious. (Cheers.)
the be to of adof Co