Lord Beaumont, an English Catholic peer, who owed his seat in the House to O'Connell, thought himself called on to denounce the Repeal agitation. "Do you know who this Beaumont is?" asked O'Connell at his next meeting. "Why, the man's name is Martin Bree, though he calls himself Stapleton. His grandfather married a Stapleton for her fortune, and then changed the name He was a Stapleton when I emancipated him. I beg your pardon for having emancipated such a fellow."
Sir Edward Sugden, as Lord Chancellor, had the control over all lunatic asylums, and frequently visited those near Dublin. After he had dismissed about a dozen magistrates, and others were pouring in their resignations, and getting appointed arbitrators in consequence—and his act of vigour was manifestly and admittedly a failure, O'Connell, at one of the meetings of the Repeal Association in Dublin, said:—
"If these men are not mad, they give some signs of madness; and a most ludicrous instance of a thing of the kind occurred on Saturday last. The Lord Chancellor, in the intervals of making out writs of supersedeas, was fond of investigating the management of lunatic asylums, and made an appointment with the Surgeon-General to visit, without any previous intimation, an asylum kept by a Dr Duncan in this city. Somebody sent word to the asylum that a patient was to be sent there in a carriage that day who was a smart little man, that thought himself one of the Judges, or some great person of that sort. Sir Edward came there, and on knocking at the door, he was admitted and received by the keeper. He appeared to be very talkative, but the attendants humoured him and answered all his questions. He asked if the Surgeon-General had arrived, and the keeper assured him he was not yet come, but would be there immediately, 'Well,' said he, 'I will inspect some of the rooms until he arrives.' 'Oh! no, sir,' said the keeper; 'we could not permit that at all.' 'Then I will walk awhile in the garden,' said his Lordship, 'while I am waiting for him.' 'We can't let you go there either, sir,' said the keeper. 'What?' shouted Sir Edward, 'don't you know that I am Lord Chancellor?' 'Sir,' said the keeper, 'we have four more Lord Chancellors here already' (roars of laughter). He got into a great fury, and they were thinking of a strait waistcoat for him, when fortunately the Surgeon-General drove up. 'Has the Lord Chancellor arrived yet?' said he. 'Yes, sir, we have him safe; but he is far the most outrageous patient we have' (renewed laughter)."
Since that day the English Press has mocked at the whole Repeal movement; and in Parliament it was never mentioned, save with a jeer. In the summer of 1843, they neither laughed nor jeered. Sir James Graham, earnestly appealing to the House to refuse O'Brien's motion of inquiry, exclaimed:—
"Any hesitation now, any delay and irresolution, will multiply the danger an hundredfold (hear, hear). If Parliament expresses its sense ...continue reading »
The Last Conquest of Ireland (Perhaps)
by John Mitchel
From a sad, comfortless childhood Giles Truelove developed into a reclusive and uncommunicative man whose sole passion was books. For so long they were the only meaning to his existence. But when fate eventually intervened to have the outside world intrude upon his life, he began to discover emotions that he never knew he had.
A story for the genuine booklover, penned by an Irish bookseller under the pseudonym of Ralph St. John Featherstonehaugh.
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