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new administration,) being, however, unable to form a Cabinet, which had the slightest chance of obtaining the support of the House of Commons, or of being satisfactory to the country at large.; a communication was, in the beginning of the following week, made by the King to Earl Grey, which, (as it rendered the success of the Reform Bill no longer doubtful,) induced that Nobleman and his. Colleagues to remain in office, to the great joy of the whole nation, which had, by his Lordship’s resignation, been plunged into a state of excitement altogether unparalleled in the history of this country.
In consequence of the above arrangement, Lord Brougham has resumed his seat on the Woolsack under circumstances which have, if possible, augmented the respect and esteem with which he is so universally regarded, his contemplated retirement having afforded an additional proof of his unbending integrity, and ardent devotion to the cause of the people.
It is said, that when the Cabinet tendered their resignations to the King, His Majesty endeavoured to detach Lord Brougham from his Col
leagues by intimating his desire that his Lord ship should continue to hold the Great Seal. This was, in all probability, designed as a compliment; though we cannot but think the King must have been strangely ignorant of his Lordship's character, if he supposed that office and power had sufficient charms to induce him to consent to an abandonment of principle, which must at once, and for ever, have sullied the high renown acquired by his noble exertions in the cause of liberty.
June 1st, 1832.
EXTRACTS FROM A SPEECH
HOUSE OF COMMONS,
AFRICAN SLAVE TRADE,
JUNE 15th, 1810,
It is now three years since this abominable traffic has ceased to be 'sanctioned by the law of the land ; and, I thank God, I may therefore now indulge in expressing feelings towards it, which delicacy, rather to the law than the traffic, might, before that period, have rendered it proper to suppress. After a long and most unaccountable silence of the law on this head which seemed to protect, by permitting, or at least by not prohibiting the traffic, it has now spoken out, and the veil which it had appeared to interpose being now withdrawn, it is fit to let our indignation fall on those who still dare
to trade in human flesh, not merely for the frauds of common smugglers, but for engaging in crimes of the deepest die; in crimes always most iniquitous, even when not illegal; but which are now as contrary to law as they have ever been to honesty and justice. I must protest loudly against the abuse of language, which allows such men to call themselves traders or merchants. It is not commerce, but crime, that they are driving. I too well know, and too highly respect, that most honourable and useful pursuit, that commerce, whose province it is to humanize and pacify the worldso alien in its nature to violence and fraud-S0 formed to flourish in peace and in honesty_s inseparably connected with freedom, and goodwill, and fair dealing, I deem too highly of it to endure that its name should, by a strange perversion, be prostituted to the use of men who live by treachery, rapine, torture, and murder! and are habitually practising the worst of crimes, for the basest of purposes—when I said murder, I spoke literally and advisedly. I meant to use no figurative phrase; and I know I was guilty of no exaggeration. I was speaking of the worst form of that crime. For ordinary murders there may even be some excuse. Revenge may have arisen from the excess of feelings honourable in themselves. A murder
of hatred, or cruelty, or mere blood-thirstiness, can only be imputed to a deprivation of reason. But here we have to do with cool, deliberate, mercenary murder; nay worse than this ; for the ruffians who go on the highway, or the pirates who infest the seas, at least expose their persons; and, by their courage, throw a kind of false glare over their crimes. But these wretches durst not do this; they employ others as base as themselves, only that they are less cowardly; they set on men to rob and kill, in whose spoils they are willing to share, though not in their dangers.—Traders, or merchants, do they presume to call themselves! and in cities like London and Liverpool, the very creations of honest trade? I, at length, will give them the right name, and call them cowardly suborners of piracy and mercenary murder.
What has the Divine Legislator said on this subject? There is a most false and unfounded notion, that the sacred writings are silent upon it; I shall prove the contrary.
" Whosoever" (says the scripture) “ stealeth a man, and sell“eth him, or in whose hands he shall be found, “shall surely be put to death.” And what is our gloss or application on this divine text?