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the Reasons of contracting so great a Debt; and
ift, Because we are of Opinion, that it highly
in all Cases of Impeachments, that the Trial should
of the Subjects of this Kingdom who may be de- ' firous to be present at this T'rial.
zdly, We are of Opinion, that it is a Justice due to the Earl who is impeached, to give him the Opportunity of vindicating himself, and to affert his Innocence in the most publick Manner imaginable, the Crimes wherewith he is charged by this Impeachment being of that Nature as render it, as we conceive, most desirable, and even necessary, on his Part, to give universal Satisfaction of his Innocence in a Cafe wherein his Honour, and that of his Posterity, are so highly concerned..
zdly, We are of Opinion, that it is of great Moment to the Honour and Dignity of the Crown, the Fountain of Justice, that the Trial of this Impeachment should be had in that Place which may. be most fatisfactory to the whole Nation, because the Articles, whereby the Earl stands impeached, relate to the Administration of the Publick Justice, of the Kingdom, and consists of Facts and Matters charged on him whilst he was Lord High Chancellor, and as such was, intrufted by his Ma. jesty with the Execution of the most eminent Office and Station concerning the Administration of Justice.. . ..?
Athly, Because we observe that the Earl impeached has, in his Defence, by his Answer, in some Degree involved the Honour of many great Perfonages, Peers of this Realm, and others, some living, and others long since deceased, but whole Descendants are now Peers and Members of this House, in the Consideration of the Matters and Crimes charged on himself; which Circumstance of the Defence being, as it seems to us, in the Opi. nion of the Earl, material to be examined into upan the Trial, we are of Opinion, that in this Respect also, the Place of Trial is become of more Importance and most proper to be in Westminster-Hall,
and not at the Bar of this House, where the Examinations must unavoidably, as we conceive, be less publick, and in that Respect less satisfactory.
5thly, It appearing to us by several Reports delivered to this House by his Majesty's Direction, which relate to the Administration of the Justice of the High Court of Chancery, whilst the said Earl was Lord Chancellor, That there are very great Deficiencies of the Money and Effects belonging to Orphans and Widows, and others the Suitors of the Court ; which Money and Effects were brought into the Court, or into the Hands of the Masters: in Chancery; and which Deficiencies, as they appear to us, amount to a great many Thousand Pounds, as yet wholly unsatisfied and unsecured; for this Reason, we are of Opinion, that it is necessary for the Publick Satisfaction, and particularly of the Suitors concerned, that his Trial should be had, not only in the most folemn Manner, but in the most publick Place also.
6thly, We do not find, that any Impeachment of the Commons has been tried at the Bar of this House, or in any other Place than in WestminsterHall, since the Restoration of King Charles the Second, and before that Period, the Impeachment of the Earl of Strafford was tried in Westminster-Hall; we find also, that, since the Restoration, every Peer which has been tried by this House, either upon an Impeachment or an Indictment, has had his Trial in Westminster-Hall, and not at the Bar of this House; and fome Time after the late Revolution; private Persons impeached by the Commons, for Frauds and Cheats relating to the Lutstring Company, and private Traffick, were appointed by this Housé to be tried in Westminster-Hall; the Impeachment of Dr. Sacheverell, for Misdemeanors committed in the Pulpit, was tried there also: for which Reasons we are of Opinion, that this Im
te Traffic 8 to the
peachment being, as we conceivę, of the highest Consequence to the Honour of the Crown and Kingdom, ought to be considered, at least with equal Regard as to the Place of Trial, and in every other Respect with any of those Trials before-mentioned : and the rather, for that the Method of Proceedings on Trials of Impeachments, if had at the Bar of this House, contrary to the general Course fince the Restoration, are therefore more unsettled by any late Precedents, and in that Respect may be liable to more Difficulties and Delays than if had in Westminster-Hall.
7thly, We think that no Consideration of Delay which may be occafioned for a little Time by the Preparations to be made in Westminster-Hall, or any other Account during the Trial, are an equivalent Consideration, or to be balanced with the Publick Satisfaction, which in every Respect' is, in our Opinion, due to this Proceeding, and especially with Regard to the Place of Trial. : Wharton, Strafford, Lechmere, Scarsdale, Gower,
Coventry. ; Boyle,
Foley, - I diffent for all the aforementioned Reasons, ex, cept the Fourth.
Die Luna 3. Maii, 1725.
Hodie 32 vice le&ta eft Billa, entitled, An Act for more effectually disarming the Highlanders, in that Part of Great Britain called Scotland, and for the better securing the Peace and Quiet of that Part of the Kingdom.
The Question was put, whether this Bill, with the Amendments, shall pass ?
It was resolved in the Affirmative.
if, Because the Bill sets forth, that many Persons in the Highlands commit many Robberies and Depredations, and oppose the due Execution of Juftice against Robbers, Outlaws, and Persons attainted; which Affertion, we conceive, was meant as an Inducement to pass the Bill, and therefore should have been fully made out by Proof, or have been undeniably clear from its Notoriety; but no Proof was attempted to be made of it; and we have not heard that such Outrages, as are charged upon the Highlanders, have been committed by them of late.
2dly, We apprehend that this Bill gives to Lords Lieutenants of Counties, Justices of the Peace, and ochers, such large and discretionary Powers, in some Cases, as are hardly to be trufted in the Hands of any Persons in a free Government, unless apparently necessary to the Preservation of it.
3dly, Since the Behaviour of the Highlanders has been peaceable and inoffensive for some Years paft, and is so at present, as far as appears to us, we cannot but fear this Bill may prove unseasonable, may hazard the Loss of that invaluable Blessing which we now enjoy, a perfect Calm and Tranquility, and raise amongst these people that Spirit of Discontent and Uneasiness which now seems intirely laid ; for we apprehend that the Execution of fome Authorities in this Bill is more likely to create, than to prevent Disorders; we think it applies fevere Remedies where, as far as we can perceive, there is no Disease, and this at a Time when the Higblanders not being accused of any Enormities, for which, in our Opinion, the Legislature ought in Justice to punish them, or in Prudence to fear them, we think it would become us, as good Patriots, to endeavour rather to keep them quiet, than to make them so.
Wharton, Scarsdale, Litchfield.