« PreviousContinue »
formed the battle-cries of contending parties; but I will only ask what great cause has triumphed within the memory of the present century which is not associated with the name, the labours, and the triumphs of Henry Brougham and of Lord Brougham. Without trenching too much upon what is merely personal, I may mention the delight it has been to me to bring to a meeting like this, as my honoured guest, the person who, above thirty years ago, was my own colleague in the representation of what was then by far the largest constituency in the United Kingdom. Often have I heard him, as was said of the great orator of old, whom he has been one of the foremost to appreciate and to approach—
"Torrentem et pleni moderantem fræna theatri ;"
and it is indeed now a rare and a refreshing spectacle to see him, at the period of life which he has reached, with a milder and mellower wisdom filling up the large outlines of his past career, and crowning his life-long work of public spirit and benevolence. A few words more I feel to be due to the occasion of our being here assembled; and I may, from the circumstance of the post which I now have the honour to fill in this country, avail myself of a somewhat representative capacity in bidding welcome to the Association for the Promotion of Social Science within the ancient capital of Ireland. It has been my gratifying lot to serve in the ranks of this Association when it held one of its meetings upon English soil, in the great town of Liverpool, and I then formed a high estimate of its capacities for usefulness. Besides the amount of actual knowledge imparted, and of ideas interchanged, the main advantage derived from the concourse of so much intelligence and benevolence is the stimulus and guidance which it affords to private effort; and it may well happen that statesmen and legislators may derive some of their happiest and most pregnant inspirations from the hints thrown out and picked up in the quiet but earnest gatherings of the sections of this Association. The Association, Ladies and Gentlemen, has for two or three successive years held its meetings in England and Scotland. It now opens this evening its beneficent mission among a quick-witted, an impulsive, and a generous people; and I firmly trust that the results of its being gathered in Dublin and in Ireland will be mutually satisfactory and salutary. I now beg to move-"That this Association offers to Lord Brougham its warm thanks for the eloquent address now delivered, and for his unwearied exertions in its support."
MUNICIPAL BANQUETS, CITY IMPROVEMENTS, &c.
MANSION HOUSE-MUNICIPAL BANQUET.
THE RIGHT HON. JOSEPH BOYCE, LORD MAYOR OF dublin. [APRIL 26TH, 1855.]
"The Health of the Earl of Carlisle, and Prosperity to Ireland."
MY LORD MAYOR, MY LORDS AND GENTLEMEN,
RISE to return my most sincere thanks for the kind-the more than kind-and cordial manner in which the mention of my name has been received by this numerous and distinguished company, assembled, as all companies ought to be, in this great civic hall, and on those festive occasions, without any exclusiveness of class, or distinction of party. I have great reason to be much gratified by the different demonstrations of welcome which I have met with during the past fortnight, capped by your acknowledgments of this evening. The Lord Mayor, our excellent host, has alluded in the most considerate terms to my former residence in this country; but I am bound to say that in one respect my present experience contrasts happily with my past, because, although I trust that during my former residence there were not wanting many interchanges of good feeling and good fellowship between the members of the Corporation of Dublin and myself, in which none more conspicuously took a part than your Lordship (the Lord Mayor), yet undoubtedly public causes did then prevent me ever being a guest in this stately hall-not that I have been wanting in some experiences of Dublin festi
vities; for I can remember, as well as some that are now present, that in the year 1828 a large assembly of the public met in Ireland did then, at a dinner in Dublin, cheer my first young efforts in Parliamentary life. Again, in the year 1841, a still larger assembly, at a dinner in the Theatre of Dublin, were pleased to crown my long official career in this country; and now, in 1855, we are thus met together, perhaps not without the memory being somewhat saddened when it reverts to the associations that have been snapped, and to friends that have passed away; but still with much matter of high compensation, with, I trust, many national evils much diminished; many national trials altered; many national differences composed, and many national feuds buried, I trust to revive no more. And, if we are thus destined to mark each recurring decade by continuous festivities, I have only to hope that we may often again thus meet together, and ever find some new topic of mutual congratulation. I am most pleased to find that, in the toast which your Lordship (the Lord Mayor) has been pleased to propose, with my name is coupled that of "Prosperity to Ireland.” And I do believe and hope that we are justified in forming an encouraging view of the present condition and prospects of Ireland. I know that such views ought always to be entertained in the spirit of humble gratitude, and not of arrogant confidence; but I do collect from the most authentic sources that are at my command at the present period, the national peace within this island is hardly anywhere seriously disturbed that crime has sensibly diminished-that agriculture is undergoing systematic and scientific enlargement-that wages are higher that there is rather an under than an over supply of candidates for employment-that the task of the ministers of justice is materially diminished-that schools for instruction and temples for divine worship are multiplied; and that the services of those who minister within them are sedulously and reverentially attended to. There never has been a deficiency in Ireland of alert heads and active hands; and if they are set to work in the spirit of perseverance, industry, and self-reliance, there are not in our day wanting legitimate vents for their laudable exercise. Would that I might add that those energies and exertions were only to be drawn upon for the pursuits of civilization, benevolence, and peace! But the fell spirit of war seems unhappily to be still in the ascendant. Well, then, Gentlemen, if we are under that stern necessity, we have in the first place the consolation of the noble alliance which has been so
appropriately dwelt upon by the foreign functionary who has addressed you, and who has almost made us feel that our languages as well as our course are the same. And, speaking to an assembly composed mainly of Irishmen, I may say that I do feel a confident expectation that the valour of Ireland will not decline, as it has never yet declined at the most trying epoch of this fearful summons. Why, Gentlemen, the strongest of your means, and the bravest of your blood has already been freely expended on the embattled slopes of the Taurian Chersonese, or in the long line of hospitals that stud the Bosphorus and the Euxine. And we have read no later than last week that the shout of the Connaught Rangers rose the loudest above the deadly gripe of the bayonet on the blood-stained parapet of the latest midnight assault. Well, Gentlemen, I am sure that we all sympathize with the sufferings of our countrymen, we all thrill with admiration at their heroic exploits. But with what gratitude and with what triumph shall we hail the return of our heroes in peace! Gentlemen, I have to repeat my thanks for the kind and cordial reception I have met with at your hands, and I feel that I cannot better embody that feeling of gratitude than by calling on you all now to join with me in drinking the health of our worthy host, the Chief Magistrate of Dublin. I feel it is not for the person who has last arrived in this assembly adequately to delineate the merits which have won the regard and confidence of his fellowcitizens; but I can at least assure him that no one will join with greater pleasure and cordiality in the welcome which I am sure you will one and all accord to the mention of his name.
MANSION HOUSE-MUNICIPAL BANQUET.
THE RIGHT HON. FERGUS FARRELL, LORD MAYOR OF DUBLIN. [JANUARY 31ST, 1856.]
"The Health of the Earl of Carlisle, and Prosperity to Ireland."
MY LORD MAYOR, MY LORDS, AND GENTLEMEN,
BEG to return you my best thanks for the honour and the kindness which, as the Representative of our gracious Sovereign, I have just received from the loyal body over which your Lordship now presides, and from the distinguished company which you have this night assembled. When I had last the honour of being within this brilliant circleI speak with literal architectural accuracy-I expressed the high opinion and the good wishes which I entertained of your Lordship's respected predecessor, who then filled the chief place in this apartment. His career and services in all respects fully bore out that opinion and those wishes; and I have now to congratulate your Lordship on the unanimous feeling of assent and approval from all classes of this community which have sanctioned the choice of your colleagues, and on the happy auguries which, whether I speak with respect to what personally concerns yourself, or to the external circumstance of the times, marked your entry on your civic reign. The condition of this great city, from the uninterrupted spectacle of tranquillity and order which it exhibits, happily affords no room for comment. It was the honourable privilege of the late Lord Mayor to distinguish his period of service by a great benefit bestowed upon the cause of public sobriety and morality-and I have no fear that your Lordship will sanction the recurrence to contrary habits; nor is it, I conceive, slight praise to all classes of the citizens of Dublin, that few, if any, were found to grudge some sacrifice of the jollity and merriment so congenial to their gay and lively tempers, when they once became convinced that the serious risk and mischief far outweighed the transient enjoyment. While I thus venture to hold out to your Lordship and your respected colleagues excellent ex