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19 High Court of Justiciary-The Court met this day, and proceeded to the trial of James M Coul, alias Moffat, alias Martin, alias Wilson, accused of theft, in so far as he, along with other persons, his accomplices, did, on the night of Saturday the 13th, or early in the morning of Sunday the 14th of July, 1811, forcibly enter the office occupied by the Paisley Banking Company in Glasgow, and break open the safe, and steal therefrom a number of bank notes of different banks, amounting to the value of L.19,753, 4s. and about L100 in gold and silver. The prisoner pleaded Not guilty. A great body of evidence of a circumstantial nature was produced. Most of the witnesses brought forward in the civil action (see Vol. VI. p. 571) were again adduced to give evidence in this remarkable trial, particularly the smith that made the key, who was brought to Edinburgh in custody of two Bow Street officers. The Jury, after a short consultation, returned a verdict, finding the libel proven, with the exception of the aggravation of habit and repute a thief not proven. The Lord Justice Clerk then passed the awful sentence of the law upon the unhappy man, which was, that he should be executed at the usual place of execution on the 26th of July. The prisoner was very attentive to the protracted proceedings, and preserved his fortitude after the verdict had left no doubt of his melancholy fate. Public interest had been strongly excited by this trial, and the avenues to the Court were crowded at an early hour. The trial was not over till past one o'clock next morning.
3.The High Court of Justiciary met for the trial of John M'Callum, Daniel Cameron, and Alex. Robertson, accused of stealing a pocket-book, containing eighteen one pound or guinea notes, in the house of Robert Halliday, innkeeper at Queensferry, on the 22d of September. Only Cameron appeared, McCallum and Robertson having absconded from their bail. Cameron pleaded Not Guilty, and sentence of outlawry was pronounced against the others. After an examination of witnesses, the Jury, without leaving the Court, found the prisoner Guilty, and he was sentenced to be transported for fourteen years.
Daniel Morrison, John Alexander, and Alex. MBean, all young lads, were next placed at the bar, accused of breaking into the house of Mr Wm. Smith, Gayfield Square, and stealing several hats and greatcoats, on the 1st of April; of stealing a coat and waistcoat from the house of John
Sutherland, Moray Street, on the same night; and being habit and repute thieves. The prisoners pleaded Not Guilty. The witnesses were then examined, when the Jury rétired, and after a short consultation, returned with a verdict, finding the housebreaking in Gayfield Square proven against all the prisoners; the second charge, of the robbery in Moray Street, proven against M'Bean, and not proven against Morrison; and the aggravation of habit and repute thieves proven against the whole of the prisoners. They were then sentenced to be transported for life.
13. HIGH TREASON.-A special commission of Oyer and Terminer having been appointed for the trial of all treasons, and misprisions of treason, committed in Scotland, the commission was opened at Stirling on the 23d June, by the Lord President of the Court of Session, the Lord Justice Clerk, the Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer, the Lord Chief Commissioner of the Jury Court, and Lords Hermand and Gillies, attended by Mr Knapp, the Clerk of Arraigns, the Lord Advocate, Mr Home Drummond, Serjeant Hullock, and a crowd of young Counsel. The commission having been read, and some minor forms gone through, a Grand Jury was sworn in. The Lord President addressed them in a speech replete with ability and eloquence, in the course of which he gave a comprehensive view of the law of treason as established at the Union, and enlarged on the advantages which the subject in Scotland has now acquired in questions with the Crown by the institution of the Grand Jury, and other forms formerly unknown to us. His Lordship carefully avoided all allusion to the cases at issue, and to the particular circumstances of the country, and warned the Jury to retire unprejudiced by what they might have seen or heard out of doors, and find their bills solely according to the evidence. Grand Jury then retired into an adjoining room, followed by Lieutenants Hodgson and Davidson, and a number of other wit nesses and after sitting in deliberation for nearly three hours, returned into Court with true bills for High Treason against the following persons, being the Radicals who were apprehended on Bonnymuir immediately after the action on the 5th of April, with a detachment of the 10th Hussars and Stirlingshire Yeomanry Cavalry :J. Baird, weaver in Condorrat; T. M'Cul loch, stocking-weaver in Glasgow; A. Hardie, weaver there; J. Barr, weaver in Condorrat; W. Smith, weaver there; B. Moir, labourer in Glasgow; A. Mur
chie, blacksmith there; A. Latimer, otherwise Lettimer, weaver there; A. Johnston, weaver there; A. White, bookbinder there; D. Thomson, weaver there; J. Wright, tailor there; W. Clackson, alias Clarkson, shoemaker there; T. Pike, otherwise Pink, muslin-singer there; R. Gray, weaver there; J. Clelland, smith there; A. Hart, cabinet-maker there; T. M'Farlane, weaver at Condorrat.
Next day true bills were found against nine other persons, from different parts of the county of Stirling-The prisoners on a subsequent day were brought up, and arraigned, when they all pleaded Not Guilty, and their trials were appointed to take place on the 13th July, (this day.)
The Commission afterwards proceeded to Glasgow, Dumbarton, Paisley, and Ayr. At Glasgow true bills were found against James Wilson, Peter M'Intyre, William Campbell, and George Allan-at Dumbarton, against Patrick M'Devitt, William Blair, Robert Munro, George Munro, Richard Thomson, and William M Phie-at Paisley against James Spiers and John Lang-at Ayr against Andrew Wyllie, Thomas Mackay, John Dickie, and Hugh Wallace. Besides these, true bills were found against a number of other individuals who have absconded. Those in custody were subsequently brought up, and all of them pleaded Not Guilty, and, particular days appointed for their trials.
CHARGES AGAINST THE QUEEN.
Our last Number contained an account of the arrival of her Majesty the Queen from the Continent, and the proceedings which had been suggested in Parliament, in consequence of certain charges brought against her by his Majesty's Ministers; stating also the wishes that had been expressed by certain members of the House of Commons, that the investigation of these charges should not be persisted in while any hope remained of effecting a compromise between the royal parties by negotiation. The feelings excited by the consequent proceedings have been such as to render every other subject of national policy uninteresting.
The Queen having, as stated in our last, agreed to receive proposals from ministers, a correspondence took place between her Majesty and the Earl of Liverpool, the result of which was, that two individuals on the part of ministers, namely the Duke of Wellington and Lord Castlereagh, were appointed to meet with Mr Brougham and Mr Denman on the part of the Queen. The parties accordingly held several conferences. It was demanded on the part of her Majesty, that her name should be restored to the Liturgy, or that, as an equivalent, she should be recognized as Queen at foreign courts. This was refused on the part of Ministers; and here the conferences broke off
The failure of this negotiation was announced to both Houses of Parliament on Monday the 19th June, and the correspondence laid before it. In this situation, after some further delays, with the view of still leaving matters open for private arrangement, Mr Wilberforce brought forward amotion on the subject on Thursday night in one of the fullest houses ever known, there being above 500 members present. Mr W, after adverting to the difficulties, which, from the papers on the table, appeared to have frustrated the object of the recent negotiation, said, he was happy to observe that in those papers no angry feeling was to be found; and in the same spirit he entreated the house not to consider itself as divided into two parties, but as called on to act in concert, if possible, in order to bring about an accommodation, of which the diffi, culties, although great, did not appear to him insuperable. The obstacle with regard to her Majesty's reception at Foreign Courts might, he conceived, be got over, by agreeing to give her an introduction as Queen at the Court of such country as she might choose for her residence. If this arrangement should prove satisfactory, he trusted that the difficulty resulting from the omission of her name in the Liturgy would not prove an insuperable bar to an accommodation. He concluded with moying a resolution for an address to her Ma jesty, in the following terms:
Resolved, That this House has learned, with unfeigned and deep regret, that the late endeavours to frame an arrangement which might avert the necessity of a public inquiry into the information laid before the two Houses of Parliament, have not led to that amicable adjustment of the existing differences in the Royal Family, which was so anxiously desired by Parlia ment and the nation.
"That this House, fully sensible of the objections which the Queen might justly feel to taking upon herself the relinquishment of any points in which she might have conceived her own dignity and honour to be involved; yet, feeling the inestimable importance of an amicable and final adjustment of the present unhappy differences, cannot forbear declaring its opinion, that when such large advances have been made towards that object, her Majesty, by yielding to the earnest solicitude of the House of Commons, and forbearing to. press further the adoption of those propositions on which any material difference of opinion is yet remaining, would by no means be understood to indicate any wish to shrink from inquiry, but would only be deemed to afford a renewed proof of the desire which her Majesty has been graciously pleased to express, to submit her own wishes to the authority of Farliament; thereby entitling herself to the grateful ac
knowledgments of the House of Commons, and sparing this House the painful necessity of those public discussions, which, whatever might be their ultimate result, could not but be distressing to her Majesty's feelings, disappointing to the hopes of Parliament, derogatory from the dignity of the Crown, and injurious to the best interests of the empire."
The motion was seconded by Mr S. Wortley. Mr Brougham opposed the motion, and declared that the insertion of her Majesty's name in the Liturgy would make every difficulty vanish. Lord Castlereagh had no objection to the address; and contended that the omission or insertion of the names of any of the Royal Family was purely at the discretion of the King. Lord A. Hamilton then moved, as an amendment, a resolution, that the insertion of her Majesty's name in the Liturgy was due to her as a matter of right, and was perfectly consistent with the honour and dignity of the Crown. The original motion was carried by a great majority. The numbers were, for the original motion, 391, against it, 124; majority 267. The following Members were then nominated to lay the resolution before her Majesty, Mr Wilberforce, Mr Stuart Wortley, Sir T. Ackland, and Mr Bankes.
The address was accordingly presented by these gentlemen on Saturday; and the House having met the same evening, principally for the purpose of receiving her Majesty's answer, it was brought up by Mr Wilberforce and read, in substance as follows
"I am bound to receive with gratitude every attempt on the part of the House of Commons, to interpose its high mediation, for the purpose of healing those unhappy differences in the Royal Family, which no person has so much reason to deplore as myfelf; and with perfect truth I can declare, that an entire reconcilement of those differences, effected by the authority of Parliament, on principles consistent with the honour and dignity of all parties, is still the object dearest to my
"I cannot refrain from expressing my deep sense of the affectionate language of these resolutions. It shews the House of Commons to be the faithful representative of that generous people, to whom I owe a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid. I am sensible too that I expose myself to the risk of displeasing those who may soon be the Judges of my conduct; but I trust to their candour, and their sense of honour, confident that they will enter into the feelings which alone influenced my determination.
"It would ill become me to question the power of parliament, or the mode in which it may at any time be exercised:
But however strongly I may feel the necessity of submitting to its authority, the question whether I will make myself a party to any measure proposed, must be de cided by my own feelings and conscience, and by them alone.
"As a subject of the state, I will bow with deference, and, if possible, without a murmur, to every act of the sovereign authority: But, as an accused and injured Queen, I owe to the King, to myself, and to all my fellow subjects, not to consent to the sacrifice of my essential privilege, or withdraw my appeal to those principles of public justice, which are alike the safeguard of the highest and humblest individual."
While these proceedings were going on in the Commons, the sitting of the Secret Committee, appointed by the House of Lords, had been postponed from day to day; but it was now proposed that the Committee should meet on Tuesday the 27th, when, on the preceding evening, Lord Dacre presented the following petition from the Queen :
"The Queen having been informed that proceedings are about to be instituted against her by the House of Lords; feels it necessary to approach their Lordships in the character of a petitioner, being advised, that, according to the forms of the House, no other mode of communication is permitted.
"The Queen is ready to meet any charge brought against her affecting her character and honour, and challenges a complete investigation into her conduct, but protests against any secret inquiry, and against that proceeding which their Lordships adopted, contrary to all the principles of the constitution; but even of such an inquiry she solemnly declares she has nothing to apprehend, unless such investigation took place before the arrival of her witnesses, by whom she pledges her self to expose the whole business.
"She anxiously desires that no delay whatever may take place of instituting the inquiry, and, as far as her Majesty is concerned, she wishes that it may be carried on immediately; but the Queen cannot suppose that their Lordships will admit so gross an act of injustice, as an inquiry into her conduct in the absence of herself and her witnesses, who, for some weeks, would be unable to reach this country.
"Her Majesty therefore prays, that before their Lordships institute farther proceedings, she may have the honour of being heard by counsel this day at the bar of their Lordships' House.”
On the motion of Lord Dacre, Messrs Brougham and Denman, her Majesty's counsel, were then heard at the bar in sup port of the petition. Mr Brougham asked, in her Majesty's name, a delay of two
months, for the purpose of procuring wit nesses from the Continent. After counsel had retired, the Earl of Liverpool moved that the meeting of the Secret Committee, which was to have taken place on the following day, Tuesday, should be postponed till the day after, Wednesday.-On Tuesday, Earl Grey brought forward a motion, to discharge the meeting of the Secret Committee which was to meet next day at 12 o'clock. This motion was supported by Lord Holland, Lord Belhaven, and Lord Bulkeley, and opposed by the Earl of Donoughmore and Lord Lauder dale. The motion was then negatived by a majority of 102 to 47.
The Secret Committee accordingly met on Wednesday the 28th, and continued its sittings till Monday the 3d instant. On the following day their report was laid before the House, and was as follows:
By the Lords' Committees, appointed a Secret Committee to examine the papers laid before the House of Lords on Tuesday, the 6th of June last, in two sealed bags, by his Majesty's command, and to report thereupon as they shall see fit, and to whom have been since referred several additional papers in two sealed bags relative to the subject matter of his Majesty's most gracious message of the 6th of June last.
"Ordered to report, That the Committee have examined, with all the attention due to so important a subject, the documents which have been laid before them, and they find that those documents contain allegations, supported by the concurring testimony of a great number of persons in various situations of life, and residing in different parts of Europe, which deeply affect the honour of the Queen, charging her Majesty with an adulterous connection with a foreigner, originally in her service in a menial capacity, and attributing to her Majesty a continued series of conduct highly unbecoming her Majesty's rank and station, and of the most licentious character. These charges appear to be calculated so deeply to affect, not only the honour of the Queen, but also the dignity of the Crown, and the moral feeling and honour of the country, that, in their opinion, it is indispensable that they should become the subject of a solenin inquiry, which it appears to the Committee may be best effected in the course of a legislative proceeding; the necessity of which they cannot but most deeply deplore."
On Wednesday the 4th, Lord Dacre presented the following petition from the Queen :-"The Queen, observing the most extraordinary Report made by the Secret Committee of the House of Lords, now ly ing upon the table, represents to the House, that she is prepared, at this moment, to defend herself against it, as far as she can understand its import. Her Majesty has
also to state, that there are various weighty matters touching the same, which it is absolutely necessary, with a view to her future defence, to have detailed in the present stage of the proceeding. The Queen, therefore, prays to be heard this day, by her Counsel, regarding such matters."
Lord Dacre then moved that her Ma
jesty's Counsel be called in, which was opposed by the Earl of Liverpool on a point of form. Neither her Majesty, nor any person out of doors, (he observed,) could regularly have any knowledge of the report of the Committee; and when a bill founded upon it was presented, it would then be the proper time to consider the petition. Lord Holland urged that it was wrong in the present case to attend rigidly to form ; and that all forms which broke through the law of substantial justice should be disregarded. The motion was, however, negatived without a division.
After the petition had been thus disposed of, the Earl of Liverpool brought in a bill of pains and penalties, founded on the report of the Secret Committee, and of which the following is a copy:
"Whereas, in the year 1814, her Majesty, Caroline Amelia Elizabeth, then Princess of Wales, and now Queen Consort of this realm, being at Milan, in Italy, engaged in her service, in a menial situation, one Bartolomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergami, a foreigner of low station, who had before served in a similar capacity:
"And whereas, after the said Bartolomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergami, had entered the service of her Royal Highness the said Princess of Wales, a most unbecoming and disgusting intimacy commenced between her Royal Highness and the said Bartclomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergami:
"And whereas her Royal Highness not only advanced the said Bartolomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergami, to a high station in her Royal Highness's household, and received him into her service, and that in high and confidential situations about her Royal Highness's person, but bestowed upon him other great and extraordinary marks of favour and distinction, obtained for him Orders of Knighthood and Titles of Honour, and conferred upon him a pretended Order of Knighthood, which her Royal Highness had taken upon herself to institute without any just or lawful authority:
"And whereas her said Royal Highness, whilst the said Bartolomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergami, was in her said service, further unmindful of her exalted rank and station, and of her duty to your Majesty, and wholly regardless of her own honour and character, conducted herself towards the said Bartolomo Pergami,
otherwise Bartolomo Bergami, and in other respects, both in public and private, in the various places and countries which her Royal Highness visited, with indecent and offensive familiarity and freedom, and carried on a licentious, disgraceful, and adulterous intercourse with the said Bartolomo Pergami, otherwise Bartolomo Bergami, which continued for a long period of time during her Royal Highness's residence abroad; by which conduct of her said Royal Highness, great scandal and dishonour have been brought upon your Majesty's family and this kingdom: Therefore, to manifest our deep sense of such scandalous, disgraceful, and vicious conduct on the part of her said Majesty, by which she has violated the duty she owed to your Majesty, and has rendered herself unworthy of the exalted rank and station of Queen Consort of this realm, and to evince our just regard for the dignity of the Crown and the honour of this nation, we, your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Lords Spiritual and Temporal and Commons in Parliament assembled, do hereby entreat your Majesty that it may be enacted, and be it enacted, by the King's most excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal and Commons in this present Parliament as sembled, and by the authority of the same, that her said Majesty Caroline Amelia Elizabeth, from and after the passing of this Act, shall be and is hereby deprived of the title of Queen, and of all the prerogatives, rights, privileges, and exemptions appertaining to her as Queen Consort of this realm; and that her said Majesty shall, from and after the passing of this Act, for ever be disabled and rendered incapable of using, exercising, and enjoying the same, or any of them; and moreover, that the marriage between his Majesty and the said Caroline Amelia Elizabeth be and the same is hereby from henceforth for ever wholly dissolved, annulled, and made void to all intents, constructions, and purposes whatsoever."
After the Bill was read a first time, the Earl of Liverpool moved, that copies should be sent to her Majesty, and her Majesty's Attorney-General, and also to the King's Attorney-General, which was agreed to.
Next day, Thursday, another petition was presented to the House from her Majesty, which was read as follows:
"The Queen has heard with inexpressible astonishment that a Bill, conveying charges, and intended to degrade her and dissolve her marriage with the King, has been brought by the first minister of the King into the House of Lords, where her Majesty has no counsel or other officer to assert her rights. The only alleged foundation for the Bill is the Report of a Secret
Committee, proceeding solely on papers submitted to them, and before whom no single witness was examined. The Queen has been farther informed, that her counsel last night were refused a hearing at the bar of the House of Lords, at that stage of the proceeding when it was most material that they should be heard, and that a list of the witnesses, whose names are known to her accusers, is to be refused to her. Under such circumstances, the Queen doubts whether any other course is left to her, but to protest in the most solemn manner against the whole of the proceeding; but she is anxious to make one more effort to obtain justice, and therefore desires that her counsel may be admitted to state her claims at the bar of the House of Lords."
The prayer of the petition was opposed, on the ground of its being too general and indefinite, and after some argument, it was at length agreed that her Majesty's counsel should, in their addresses to the House, confine themselves to arguments upon the mode of proceeding on the bill, and with regard to the time of proceeding. To these points Messrs Broughman and Denman accordingly confined themselves. On the latter point they demanded, in the Queen's name, that not an hour should be suffered to elapse before her Majesty was afforded an opportunity of repelling the charges that had been alleged against her. Lord Liverpool intimated that he would, on Monday, apprise the House of the earliest day on which he should move the second reading of the bill, and for this purpose he moved that the Lords should be summoned. Lord Grey moved, as an amendment, that the Lords be summoned for this day, and took the sense of the House on the point. The amendment, however, was negatived on a division, in which there appeared for the original question 56, and 19 against it.
Accordingly, on Monday the 3d instant, the Earl of Liverpool proposed, that, as the presence of the Judges was necessary during the examination of witnesses, and as they could not possibly attend before the 17th of August, the second reading of the bill should be postponed till that day, which, after some discussion, was agreed to. It was proposed by several noble Lords, that a list of the witnesses who were to give evidence against her should be delivered to the Queen, which, however, was refused.
While the Secret Committee of the Lords was sitting, an important discussion was going on in the Lower House of Parliament. Lord Castlereagh there proposed to postpone the adjourned debate on the appointment of a Secret Committee till Friday the 7th of July; but his Lordship intimated, at the same time, that it was possible the House of Lords might institute some judicial pro