Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

tors.

ment.

circumstances in which the deceased Di. crimes : not so in the case of the late Mr. rector was placed for the adoption of this Grant, he was not soon cut off from their motion, without dwelling upon specific service, and from the wide sphere of his details. He did not conceive there was utility, but died mature and grey in years, much stress to be laid upon the want of and long ripe in the practice and dispenprecedent, which had been referred to; sation of virtue. True, this maturity of the want of a precedent, for an act in itself life and service, the long career he had just and right, was no reason why they filled in the course of nature, materially should exclude themselves from the per lessened the poignancy of their regret, formance of a duty which they felt incum while it furnished an additional reason in bent upon them to discharge. (Hear! hear!) support of the claim now made upon them; There might have been others who de and which, he repeated, from the very served similar tributes of respect in times length of the services of the deceased, did past, and they ought not perhaps to bave not require, nor could be expected to rebeen overlooked; there may be more who quire or pledge any individual Proprietor will yet earn 'such ; but all that is matter to an entire approval of every act of Mr. of speculation, which ought not to exclude Grant's long life; wbile, at the same them from the fulfilment of an act of jus- time, it gave enough of service, enough ttice incurred in their own time, and of of the general opportunities for weighing which they had derived the benefit. (Hear! and appreciating that service, to entitle -hear!) Neither did he see any reason for the individual who performed it to the anticipating, as some gentlemen had done, tribute now offered

to his memory. future danger, from the accumulation of (Hear! hear!) He regretted the oppo" mural momuments,” and the preserva

sition which had been made to the original tion of such a monopoly for their Direc- motion, and still earnestly trusted that the

The accumulation could never in Hon. Proprietor would withdraw his fact occur, it would defeat itself; for the amendment, and let the original question frequency would diminish the value of the stand unafected. In conclusion, he had honour, and destroy the intended compli. only to regret his inability to do justice to

He did not think it worth while, the subject, but it was one in which he in argument, to speculate upon such cases could not reconcile it to his feelings to as may arise where high desert would give a silent vote. (Hear! hear!) demand a repetition of those tributes; as Mr. Gahagan said that it was his first those cases arose, let them be decided upon intention to have simply supported the their own intrinsic merits, and not be called amendment by his vote, but lie now felt up to their imaginations now, to deter them under the necessity of saying a few words - from the act which was proposed. He in reply to the Hon. Proprietor who had - trusted, that on an occasion like this they just sat down. He gave credit to his dewould forget private differences of opi- claration that he, in common with the nion, and, in the consideration of the ge

other friends of the late Mr. Grant, when neral merits of so zealous and devoted a they had determined upon bringing forservant, come to the just and gratifying ward this proposition, never intended by conclusion, that while they were perpe

their motion to invite invidious comparituating the example of real and honesty, sons; he went on to say that a complete most assiduously and honourably con. unanimity of sentiment for any public tinued for a long series of years, in ar

character was not to be expected ; and the duous and high employments, they were

Hon. Proprietor then added the expression also pursuing a great moral good, by hold of his bope, that a sufficient quantity of ing out to all parts of the community the prominent good would be found in the incitement of such an example. There history of Mr. Grant's services to justify was, he always thought, in the appropria- the erection of the proposed monument. tion of posthumous honours for distin He (Mr. Gahagan) was compelled upon guished merit, as much of judgment as that point, namely, on the main principle there was of feeling; and he entreated of upon which the Hon. Proprietor had thein not to overlook the opportunity now

founded the motion before them, to quote afforded to them, in the case of a man to

against him the high authority of Mr. whom he might with truth apply the line

Grant himself; and it must be considered of the poet

a singular coincidence, that on the first

day when that Court had the opportunity Muliis ille bonis flebilis occidit.

of beholding the new statue to the late In the experience of life they often saw Warren Hastings, they should be called men carried away at the first dawning of upon to vote another monumental tribute brilliant genius—they often saw others of the same kind to the Director who had called from existence in the midst of a firmly opposed its erection. The present career of honour-and again, bow often resolution was for the erection of a statue did they see men swept off' while occupied or monument. Suppose the former, and in the pursuit of profligacy, and destroyed that the site, instead of being in Bloomsin the perpetration of the most atrocious bury church, was in that Court ; suppose

the marble figures could imbibe the spirit tion of the opening of the trade, for in. of life, how could Charles Grant look stance, his view had been proved to have Warren Hastings in the face, or Warren been decidedly erroneous. The Hon. Hastings, Charles Grant ?- (A laugh.) Mover, in estimating the claims of Mr. He would recall to them the language Grant, first begged the question, and then used by Mr. Grant, in the discussion upon raised his argument upon it. He assumed Mr. Hastings' monument; language which the force of public opinion, and next ar.. he did not copy from any unauthenticated gued that he had it with him. He dereport, but from the paper used by Mr. scribed it as being overwhelming and Grant, and which be bad read in that paramount; even superior (and in that he Court, as containing his preineditated and did not agree with him) to the monarchial fixed sentiments upon the subject. The influence. Who can fly from it? asked words of Mr. Grant were these: Mr. the Hon. Proprietor; and, in an eloquent Grant on that occasion observed, “ The strain, he shewed that solitude afforded no measure now proposed is to decree by a shelter from the pangs occasioned by public act the erection of a statue in public obloquy, and no relief from the honour of Mr. Hastings. Thus, to de contemplation of one's-self; whilst, on the cree in honour of any person, goes to. other hand, the busy world was shut hold up that person to the admiration of against the victiin of public opinion. The the world, and to transmit a solemn tes idea was good, the words were fine, but timony of his pre-eminent excellence to the position was not correct.

How many all future ages. On the present occasion, are there who do not perpetrate flagrant the terms in which this act is proposed, evil, yet whose ways are bad, and who do "long, zealous, and successful services," escape the punishment of their mis-deeds ? will sanction, at least, the more prominent Then take the argument the other way. measures of a long administration ; and, If mere possession of zeal, integrity, and to be truly honourable to Mr. Hastings, ability, entitle a man to the gratitude of must be supposed to sanction also as wise posterity, where are such monuments to and just, the political and moral involved stop? Does the virtuous discharge of a in them. In such a testimony and such man's duty in the rotation of the career an act, I feel myself utterly unable to of life, however useful and admirable to join; and as silence might imply con those who love the good picture of docurrence, I am obliged expressly to de. mestic example, entitle the possessor to clare my dissent.” Now then, upon Mr. public reward ? Where was its claim Grant's own deliberate shewing, it was upon Mr. Grant's own axiomn ? Sure he not a sufficient quantify of prominent was, that if the principle were once adgood, that in his opinion justified the mitted, they would never have another tribute of monumental honours, which poet to write for them another beautiful was to hold up to future ages the example elegy, “ on a country church-yard ;” (a of the man; but it was that “pre-eminent laugh.) for there would be no cemetery excellence,” which was worthy of being without its groupe of mural monuments. beld up as an example to all succeeding Do gentlemen forget how rare is the ages. Apply then Mr. Grant's own test distribution of public honours by the to his own case : where was his “pre-emi- erection of such posthumous tributes ? In nent excellence ?" Excellence he had, Parliament the utmost circumspection is and a large sliare of it; private virtues he used, even in cases where the services of had, and who denied them? These then the highest Statesmen, whose acts involved being admitted, there was no doubt that the fate and prosperity of nations, were his private friends had a right to cherish concerned. Even in the case of the imhis memory. "They had a right to pay mortal Pitt, who so long swayed, as Prime what tribute they pleased, and in his Minister, the destinies of this kingdom ; parish church' if they liked, to the recol- who was the frons, the caput, the origo, of Jection of his departed worth. Public the national system; even in his case, there bodies were not, however, to be called was some difference of opinion as to the apupon to consecrate private virtue, but to plication of monumental honours. Was distinguish public services. The other the late Mr. Grant the prime mover of any tablet was consigned to the friends and great system which swayed the destiny of family who were endeared to the deceased their Indian empire ? Was he the frons, the (Hear!) He must deny, as he had before caput, the origo of any such system? He said, to Mr. Grant ihe possession of was, no doubt, a man of much merit; a “pre-eminent excellence," in the sense in man who deserved to be respected: but which he bad bimself most properly con. the distinction was wide between such a sidered it; and, so far from assenting to sphere of utility and esteem, and the public the general view which had been taken of and pre-eminent merit which could alone Mr. Grant's exertions, he believed there justify the compliment, at their corporate would be found many who thought that expense, intended for his memory. (Hear! the majority of that gentleman's efforts hear!) Even in the case of Lord Cornhad been wrongly directed. On the ques. wallis, who had so early selected Mr. Grant Asiatic Journ.--No. 97.

VOL. XVII. L

1

for his friendship, the late Lord London could he bave a voice on the occasion, derry, in moving the monument to that consent to receive the trophy. (Hear! Governor-General, distinctly told the hear !) House of Commons, that he was aware he Mr. Trant was sorry, at so advanced a called for a tribute which ought to be rarely period of the discussion, to occupy the alasked, and never except for some great and tion of the Court; but he could not on signal service, on which common opinion such an occasion overlook the many miswas, by common consent, universally fixed takes and misconceptions into which seOf this nature were the transcendant ser veral of the gentlemen had fallen who had vices of such men as a Nelson and a St. opposed the original motion. It had been Vincent. On warlike enterprize of that insinuated, if not directly asserted, Ly one description there could be no variance of Hon. Proprietor (Mr. Hume), that the opinion : not so of many efforts which were late Mr. Grant had not been the friend of marle in civil life, and in political pursuits. the education and moral improvement of There were a variety of opinions upon parts their Indian population, and that he was of Mr. Grant's services; upon his share in only the advocate for the establishment of the shipping reformation, on his view of a college at home, in the hope of putting the opening of the free trade, and on the down that established by the Marquess establishment of the college system. He Wellesley in Fort William. Now he had was quite convinced, that if this motion attended very particularly to all the diswere carried, there was so singular and cussions that had taken place upon the esneutralizing an incongruity in its principle, tablishment of Haileybury College, and that it would fail to answer its intended he had the honour of being bimself one of purpose When the Charter of that great the first members of the college of Fort Company should cease to exist (for no man William, and he could positively affirm, could say its security and stability were that there was no act of Mr. Grant that perpetual), what then would remain to com could by any degree of justice or fairness memorate the fame of their Body? Were be construed into a desire to take a hostile they to refer to a parish church in Blooms- view of any of the plans laid down by bury-square? When he made this local Lord Wellesley for the cultivation and allusion, far be it from him to disparage a advancement of education in India. He parochial cemetery; he knew its sanctity, could himself, on the contrary, bear his and the solemn reverence with which it humble testimony to the services of Mr. ought to be referred to, and there he hoped, Grant, in the promotion of every thing when the business of this fleeting life had which related to the moral and intellectual closed upon him, to repose in the same improvement of the inhabitants of their pious hope, and serene tranquillity, with possessions in Asia. (Hear! hear !) Mr. which their late honourable director had Burke had forty years ago said, that if the sunk into the tomb. (Hear! hear!) But English power were, by any sudden rehe must repeat, that`a parish church was vulsion, to be expelled from India, no not the place where a great public monu trace would remain that a civilized people ment ought to be erected. If they must had ever had that country under their rule bave one, let it be erected in some con and dominion, or had ever set their foot spicuous situation ; let it be placed, for upon the soil, except to conduct the desoinstance, in the square of Haileybury Col. lation of war, However applicable was lege; let it be consigned to a situation the remark of Mr. Burke at the earlier where its durability for the incitement of period of their history, the stain which had posterity would be assured :

been cast upon their conduct had since Drem domus Æneæ Capitoli immobi

been, happily for them, removed, Accolet, imperiumque paler Romanus habebit.

" Pudet hæc opprobria nobis There was no precedent, he would again

Et dici potuisse;"repeat, for one particle of the present pro- but the remainder of the sentence, “et nor position, which was the mingled offspring potuisse repelli,” could no longer be apof an amiable weakness and a want of plied to them. He thanked God that the prudence. He could appreciate this mode charge could no longer be made against of paying the tribute of admiration to the them with even the shadow of truth, and private virtues and steady worth of Mr. in lois conscience he thought that much of Grant, if the friends who survived the ob. the modern amelioration was due to the ject of their esteem and attachment had services and continued labours of the late themselves called in the aid of the chisel Mr. Grant. (Hear! hear !) With respect of Mr. Chantry, or of some other eminent to the mode of conducting the education sculptor, to construct the memorial of of their officers, and he had had many optheir regard. They would then have been portunities of knowing how dear thai obproperly employed in testifying their sense ject was to Mr. Grani, his view was, that of private worth, and not in promoting an it had better be effectively commenced at opinion that his life had been an example home than in India. On that view alone of pre-eminent public service, in which had Mr. Grant acted : but never was he sense alone the deceased would himself, actuated, at any period of his long life, by

sarum,

any desire to remit his most zealous, sin- adoption of the particular precedent now cere and efficient exertions for the pro- called for. He could only say, in reply motion of education in India. Respecting to these arguments and apprehensions, that the general question, he should say, that if those who had gone before them, and. although there was no precedent to guide had had the advantage of eminent services, them, it was yet time that there should be were nevertheless so blind to their value, one to meet such a case. He agreed that and insensible to their public worth, as to there might have been others who had disregard the example which they ought to equal claims for the extent and duration have held out for the benefit and emulation of past services ; but was it any reason of their successors, the precedent of their that because they, or their predecessors, inactivity and ingratitude was one which had neglected to do justice to others, they he would not follow, nor envy the feelings should continue to refrain from giving to and principles of those who either had nierit its due? (Hear! hear!) If they traced or would trace their steps. (Hear! had not (and he was ashamed of the fact) a hear!) In reply to the observations of the precedent on their own records, the Chan- Hon. Director (Mr. Elphinstone), who cellor of the Exchequer had on a late oc- had spoken within the bar, that there were casion furnished one which it was fit they many who would have a similar claim in should imitate; he meant, when that right times to come, if the present motion were Hon. Gentleman, in proposing the mo- agreed to, he would say, that when the nument to Earl St. Vincent, recollected time came, and with all of them he hoped it that Parliament bad omitted to furnish a was very distant, it would be for the Court similar tribute to Lord Duncan, and took to do them that justice which was now that opportunity of supplying the omis- sought for the memory of Mr. Grant. sion. (Hear! hear!) Let ihem, acting on (Hear! hear!) With respect to the allu. the same generous principle, repair thesion to the meeting of the Bar for Lord ouission, if such it was, to the memories Erskine's statue, that was, he thought, a of Sir Hugh Inglis and Sir Francis Ba different case. Lord Erskine might be said ring, and taking this opportunity, when to have represented the whole body of the erecting a monument to Mr. Grant, to law; that body were called upon to honour acknowledge the claims of those gentle his memory. But the East-India Commen. (Hear! hear !) Upon the score of pany was not constituted in the same manpublic services, he would ask, whose claim ner; they were a chartered and a corporate stood in competition with Mr. Grant's, body, and could only act in a particular during a life of fifty years laboriously and form. With reference to the invidious use eminently devoted to the cultivation and that might be made of this motion, if the enlargement of every branch of their in- same honour were not paid to other men, terests? Were these to be called services he would ask the Hon. Member (Mr. of an ordinary nature, or as discharged Hume) if, when he was, for his zealous in the mere rotation of duty ? On the and active parliamentary labours, thanked contrary, he would assert them to be in by various bodies of the people, he had the rank of “pre-eminent scrvices,” and considered those marks of popular respect which justly entitled the dispenser to the paid to himself as disparaging the prinapprobation and gratitude of posterity. ciples or labours of other Members of (Hear, hear!) These being his opinions, Parliament with whom he was in the habit the original motion should have his cor? of acting, and who were not included in

the like complimentary tributes ? (Hear! Mr. Carruthers said, that after the very

hear!) He would not believe that the able manner in which the motion had been

Hon. Member had ever considered them in supported, he should only regret the pro- ground for an uncomfortable feeling, or a

such a light, or as furnishing the least position of the amendment, and express a hope that the Hon. Mover would withdraw jealous spirit in the minds of others; neither it , and permit the original question to be would he think that any Director now

sat disposed of with unanimity. He deeply within that bar, or was ever likely to sit regretted that a motion which carried con. there, who could be actuated by so 'narrow viction with it should have met any opposi. and i!liberal a feeling towards any contemtion in that Court, where the various merits porary. (Hear ! hear!) His inaxim was of Mr. Grant were so well known. It always to do justice to merit as he found it. would be his humble duty to endeavour to

" Palmam qui merwit ferat," bring the Court to a state of reason, after was a salutary maxim, which he hoped that the delusion which had been shed over the Court would be always found to follow. subject by the Hon. Proprietor (Mr. He therefore hoped that the question of Hume), and the eloquent and animated precedent or no precedent would be address of the Hon. Proprietor behind him thrown out of the present consideration, (Mr. Gahagan). He should confine himself and not be suffered to influence their vote; to the consideration of the want of prece it would be idle to delay their decision dent wbich biad been so forcibly urged, and until they could found it upon detailed the dangers which were ascribed to the documents; they had before them the

dial support.

broad fact of a life usefully, zealously, and question before them, he thought there was honourably spent in their service; and upon on the face of it something injudicious, in the general impression of the merits of a the erection, by a public body, of a monuman so well known as the late Mr. Grant, ment in a parish church. If any man in he thought they were authorized in pro their service deserved that distinguished ceeding to a decision upon the prima facie mark of posthumous recollection, let bis case which had been brought under their statue be erected within the walls of that consideration. (Hear !).

Court, to stand as a polar star to guide Mr. Samuel Diron said, he meant not to their future course. When he objected to depreciate the merits or services of the late the mode proposed for the purpose of comMr. Grant, both of which he acknow. memorating the services of their late Diledged; but he was still afraid of the con- rector, Mr. Grant, he was far from undersequence of setting the proposed precedent. valuing that gentleman's abilities ; he was Allowing all the merits and public labours the clearest speaker and the best reasoner he of the late Director, still it could not be had ever heard inside that bar. The Directors contended that he had acted more for the would, of course, all vote for the original benefit of the East-India Company than question, for who could blame them for all many other Directors, who had performed wishing to have monuments erected to their similar offices within the same period, and memory in their parish churches? It was this for whom motions of this kind had never consequence, however favourable to them, been made. If the motion now before the which induced him, on public grounds, to Court were agreed to, it would be im oppose the motion. possible in future to overlook the services Mr. Impey said, he had never before of other Directors, without creating a feel- been witness to any discussion, in which so ing of invidious distinction which would many parties suffered their party feelings be very unwise and impolitic. He had so far to mislead the minds of men ;-he some objections to the verbal framing of never recollected a case where individuals the motion (to that part, for instance, where were induced by the strength of those the meagre expression relative to Mr. feelings, to argue a question of this nature, Grant's services“ in Parliament and else upon such grounds as had been this day where" was used; but he opposed it on the advanced, and which were any thing but broad principle of its inexpediency. just and proper, on an occasion like the

Mr. Sheriff Laurie said, that although present-(Hearl hear!) There was one he came to the Court resolved to vote for thing which was quite clear from the the original question, yet, after hearing the speeches they had heard, that the late discussion which had taken place, he was Mr. Grant was no friend either to the now prepared to vote against it. They characters or the measures of Mr. Hasthad met there as an Assembly of British ings and Lord Wellesley; but whether he Merchants; but really, from the number was, or was not, had nothing to do with of elegant Latin quotations that had been the present question. He was sorry that, made in the course of the debate, a stranger on such an occasion as this, the friends and might be led to suppose that it was a meet supporters of either of the systems of these ing of the members of one of the univer. Governors General, should have turned sities. (A laugh!). It was true, the late aside from the subject which they were met Mr. Grant appeared to have been the best to consider, and been led to consider Mr. organ of communication among their Di. Grant as merely their opponent upon these rectors upon several occasions; there he points of policy. He was sorry, also, certainly had had an advantage over others that Mr. Grant had manifested his oppoof them, for he (the Sheriff) was perfectly sition to the statue proposed to Mr. Hastready to admit that they were not all alike. ings ;-he was sorry for it, because he (A laugh!) On consideration, he thought differed from him respecting the conduct it an injudicious step to have sent forth a of that eminent individual; and the more requisition, signed by so many influential so, because he found that the arguments names: for how could they expect to have then used by Mr. Grant were now dia fair division upon any subject which they rected against himself by those who opposmight meet to discuss, after it had received ed this tribute to bis memory. But of tho avowed sanction of persons of such what, in plain terms, did Mr. Grant's weight and authority amongst them ? A argument against Mr. Hastings consist? question already considered in such a man “ I admit,” said he, “the great merits of ner, left little chance of being afterwards Mr. Hastings,-I admit his great and heard as it otherwise would have been. In eminent services to his country,—but I future he thought it would be a good plan differ from him in the view which he took were members restricted from furnishing to of certain public measures, and I alone their requisitions more than the nine names shall oppose this monument.” At that required by the bye-law, and then there period, a speech was made against Mr. would be a fairer chance of their coming Hastings similar to that which was now unbiassed to the consideration of the sub made by the Hon. Proprietor (Mr. Hume) ject. With respect to the substantive against Mr. Grant, itern by item; the

« AnteriorContinuar »