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the highest importance to be maintained in a state professing itself to be Christian.

The present year affords brighter prospects in reference to our political condition than the one preceding. A Conservative administration is now in power, which is supported by a Conservative House of Commons; so that we need no longer dread measures hostile to the church and constitution, like those which were attempted, and too many of them carried, when the Melbourne Ministry held the reins of government. Since Sir Robert Peel came into office, there has been a rapid restoration of tranquillity to Ireland. The French nation, too, have actually determined to reduce their armaments both by sea and land, so that the prospect of the preservation of the peace of Europe is far more promising than it has been for many years; and from the general aspect of the policy pursued by the Right Honourable Baronet, it cannot be disputed that his administration is entitled to every support. It is opposed only by factious and discontented persons, by papists, infidels, and revolutionists, and by all who would gladly seize any occasion of disturbing the order of society to promote their own self-interested views.

The power of the Papacy has been greatly lessened by the recent changes in the British cabinet. Instead of presiding over the councils of an empire, which is the mistress of the world, it is now circumscribed within the narrow limits of the civic chair of the City of Dublin; every Christian heart should be thankful for the blessings of that repose from the machinations of Popery which is now likely to be enjoyed and felt, comparatively at least, not only by Ireland, but throughout the whole habitable globe.

But although we believe that the Papacy has been humbled, and its power to afflict mankind has been greatly curtailed by the happy changes which have taken place in the government, still we must recollect that there is another antichristian spirit abroad in the world, more powerful, perhaps, than that of Popery, and destined in all probability to be her destruction. We here allude to the spirit of infidelity. This evil principle, in alliance with Popery, is exerting every nerve to overthrow the present government of our beloved Queen; it makes its advances in the specious garb of modern liberalism. And by this device we must confess that the enemy appears to us most likely to succeed. We fear that Sir Robert Peel may not be aware of the wiles and stratagems of those with whom he has to contend; at any rate, we are satisfied that he will gain nothing by a yielding or conciliating policy; for what saith the Scripture, "Let favour be shewed to the wicked, yet will he not learn righteousness." The statesmanlike qualities which the present times demand, are the unbending firmness, the hardihood and decision of character, which

distinguished the two great ministers of the name of Pitt. We are apprehensive, too, that there is wanting in our countrymen, from the enervating effects of wealth and luxury, a sufficient strength of patriotic and religious feeling to arm them for the conflict with those evil principles which the powers of darkness are so actively employed in propagating throughout the world. We believe, too, that since the time when the state placed Popery on the same footing with Christianity, there has naturally been less discrimination on the part of the people, betwixt truth and error in religion. Indeed, there is so little zeal for God's truth, so little earnestness for the faith in the present day, that it is become quite a settled habit in men's minds to consider Popery in the same light with Christianity, and as only another form or section of it. We believe that Sir Robert Peel has undertaken the hard task, and the perilous experiment of governing a Christian nation, after having deprived its constitution of the really Conservative principle of Christianity. Protestants may be of use in correcting these mistakes, in repairing our beautiful constitution, or restoring it to its primitive excellence; in elevating the minds of the people to a higher standard in their religious sentiments, and inspiring them with a more cordial attachment to that Christian form of government under which we have the happiness to live.

PERFIDY;

OR, LEAVES FROM AN OLD ALMANACK.

BY CHARLOTTE ELIZABETH.

CHAPTER VII.

THERE dwelt in the city of Dublin a respectable widow lady, named Chapman, possessed of some property, but without any near male connexions. She had obliged a neighbour with a loan of 150l., (a large sum in those days,) for which she held his bond. In the year 1689, an opportunity was given for robbing her of this sum, and adding yet further extortion and persecution, such as for her Protestantism she was judged worthy to undergo.

King James had issued his famous gun-money, the origin and quality of which are well known. It was the most universally effective of all his devices to ruin every class of his Protestant subjects. He bought up or seized all the old kettles, cracked bells, door-knockers, and every description of brass, pewter, and tin vessels that he could lay hold on, to be melted down with the gun-metal of all the unserviceable artillery to be found. Of this most villanous compound he issued a coinage, much of the

size of our penny, halfpenny, and farthing pieces; only that, by royal proclamation, the first was to bear the value of half-acrown, the second of a shilling, the last of sixpence : then, after a while, he called in the half-crowns, gave them a new stamp, and constituted them five-shilling pieces. This worthless rubbish he commanded his Protestant subjects, on pain of death, to receive as good and lawful payment, in exchange for their gold, silver, merchandise, lands, and possessions of every description; while the Romanists were not required to receive it in anywise from them. Thus, if a Protestant was necessitated to raise five pounds in any way whatever, by selling his plate, or giving a note of hand, or howsoever it might be, it was compulsory on him to receive it from a Papist in brass money; but if he had to return a loan, advanced in that coinage, or to make any kind of purchase or payment, he must give silver and gold if a Papist was the receiver. It may easily be imagined how utterly and hopelessly ruinous this was; the Protestant seller could only receive half a farthing's worth of base metal for that for which a Protestant buyer must give a silver crown. The governor of Dublin not only threatened to hang, but did actually execute, some Protestant gentlemen who were charged with refusing the tender of this infamous gun-money.

The widow Chapman's debtor considered this a fair opportunity at once of doing away with her claim, and of punishing her heresy; he went to his solicitor, who drew up an allegation, stating that he had formally tendered her the amount of his bond in lawful brass money, and that she had refused to accept it. This was brought before the provost-marshal's deputy, a savage fellow, named Kearney, who forthwith despatched a guard of soldiers to seize her. They broke into the widow's quiet habitation at ten o'clock at night, and brought her to Kearney, who, with many dreadful execrations, and every variety of abuse, swore she should be burnt the next morning: that he had authority to put to any death he pleased whosoever should refuse the king's new coin; and he would exercise that power on her. The perjured debtor, who stood by, was so struck by compunction at seeing to what he had brought a helpless woman, from whom he had received nothing but kindness, that he voluntarily confessed his charge was false; he had never tendered payment in any form; but had sent to her house one day, and received for answer that she was not at home. He admitted that the solicitor had stated a falsehood and wronged her; but this declaration produced no effect on the provost's deputy, who commanded her to be thrust for the night into a dark closet, without either bed or candle, repeating that he would have her burnt in the morning. Her own solicitor, who had been apprised of what was going on, interceded, offering any amount of security for her production in the morning if

she might be permitted to return for that night to her own house; but Kearney replied he would tie him neck and heels, send him to Newgate, and on the morrow hang him at his own door, if he dared to intermeddle in the business.

The poor lady was then locked up in this dark and comfortless place, where she passed the hours alone until nine o'clock the next morning, when a person entered to inform her that the deputy desired she would prepare for immediate death, as they were making ready for her burning. Again and again had she proffered, before her captors and accusers, to receive the debt in the brass coinage, which she had never refused, as all were forced to acknowledge; but Kearney declared he would have her life, and held out for a long time against all representations and entreaties, until the Lord, who heareth the cry of the poor destitute, and who, in his holy habitation, is a judge of the widow, enabled some pleader to prevail with the merciless man. He consented to release his innocent victim, on condition that she gave him four pounds for his trouble, and paid ten shillings to her adversary's solicitor for drawing up the false charge against her; also signing an acknowledgment for money never received, and giving a general release, to be entered on the records of the court. To all these shameless demands Mrs. Chapman was willing to accede, save only the last, which was more than her sense of justice and honesty could brook. The demur, however, occasioned a renewal of Kearney's oaths to burn her forthwith, and also to hang her solicitor; both of which she knew he lacked neither power nor will to do; and she at length consented, signed the release, paid the demands of her oppressors, and returned home to wonder at her present safety.

These are plain, unvarnished facts, illustrative of the perfidious character of the system which God has pointed out by the mark, "speaking lies in hypocrisy" in spiritual things, and which has even removed the crime of lying from the place that the Holy Spirit had assigned it in the catalogue of sins, and made it a trivial, an allowable-yea, in many cases, a commendable matter. Truth is the basis of all equity, all security, all that can render man's position safe or satisfactory; and where truth is openly spurned at, what remains but that every man's hand must be against his brother, and the most shameless villain must ever hold the highest authority?

In the appendix to Simon's work on Irish Coins, are some curious particulars relating to the gun-money, contained in royal proclamations, and official papers registered in the Auditor's Office, among which we meet with the following choice letter, dated Limerick, January 4, 1689:

"SIR,-Last Tuesday the carriages parted from hence with six thousand six hundred weight of gunn mettle, six hundred

and a quarter and two pounds of fine pewter, and a thousand weight of steele; they will be eleven or twelve days a-goeing, because the roads are very deep. The pewter cost tenpence per pound, and steele sixpence. You may expect very soone a farther supply of mettle, for I have made an agreement with two eminent dealers from Corke, who have five or six thousand weight of copper and brass which they are to send here. I must have an order from the lords of the treasury, for sending it to your mint; there are foure or five broken bells in the country, which I can have if you send an order for seizing them for the king's use: there is an useless cannon at Galway, and one or two at Kingsaile: I forgot to send you some of our coyne as you desired; by the next occasion I will not faile. I cannot buy fine pewter now under eleven or twelve pence the pound, for they say that you give fourteen or fifteen pence a pound in Dublin; the rates for carriage from hence to Dublin is eight shillings the hundred weight. I rest, your humble servant, "WATT PLUNKETT."

Such are the blessings to which we may look forward under the paternal government of English kings, when Romanists shall have succeeded in doing away with that awkward obstacle, the Act of Settlement !

ARREST OF JUDGMENT IN HEARNE v. STÓWELL.

THE facts of this case will probably be in the recollection of most of our readers. The object of the following article is merely to place before them a correct copy of the substance of the judgment lately delivered by the Court of Queen's Bench, and to submit some observations explanatory of the position in which that judgment leaves the parties concerned.

In Michaelmas term following the trial of the action at the Liverpool Summer Assizes, 1840, Mr. Cresswell, who was counsel for the Rev. Hugh Stowell, in the first instance, applied for a new trial, on the ground that the occasion on which the paper in question was read justified the reading of it. The Court of Queen's Bench refused that application;* but granted two conditional rules-one for a new trial, on the ground of misdirection by Mr. Baron Rolfe, the judge who tried the causethe other for arresting the judgment. These rules came on to be argued in last Michaelmas term; and on November 27th, Lord Denman delivered the following judgment:

"Two motions have been made in this case:-1st, That there should be a new trial, on the ground of misdirection by the

* See the Protestant Magazine for February, 1840,

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