SPEECHES AND DEBATES IN THE House of Commons,
DURING The Last Session of the Fourth Parliament of Great Britain.
Mr W. Bromley's Motion to adjourn.
Her Majesty Queen ANNE dying on
Sunday the first of August 1714, and the
Crown of these Realms immediately devolving to his royal highness the Elector
of Hanover, pursuant to the act of Settlement pass'd in 1701, the Parliament, according to a resolution taken in Council,
met that very day; but Sir Thomas Hanmer, bart. Speaker
of the House of Commons, knight of the shire for Suffolk, being in the country, Mr William Bromley, member for the university of Oxford, and Secretary of State, mov'd to adjourn to
the Wednesday following; which being seconded, Sir Richard
Onslow, bart. member of parliament for the county of Surry,
oppos'd the same, as being too long an adjournment at so
critical a juncture, and therefore mov'd for adjourning to the
next Day only; which last motion was agreed to. This and
the three following Days being spent in taking the oaths, &c.
On the 5th the (fn. 1) lord Harcourt, lord high Chancellor, and
the rest of the Lords Justices, came to the House of Lords,
and the House of Commons being sent for, and attending, the
lord Chancellor made the following speech to both Houses of
Lords Justices Speech.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"It having pleas'd almighty God to take to himself our
late most gracious Queen, of blessed memory, we hope
that nothing has been omitted, which might contribute to
the safety of these realms, and the preservation of our religion, laws, and liberties, in this great conjuncture. As
these invaluable blessings have been secured to us by those
acts of Parliament, which have settled the succession of these
kingdoms in the most illustrious house of Hanover, we have
regulated our proceedings by those rules which are therein
"The Privy Council, soon after the demise of the late
Queen, assembled at St. James's, where, according to the
said acts, the three instruments were produc'd and open'd,
which had been deposited in the hands of the Archbishop
of Canterbury, the lord Chancellor, and the Resident of
Brunswick. Those, who either by their offices, or by virtue of these instruments, had the honour of being appointed Lords Justices, did, in conjunction with the Council, immediately proceed to the proclaiming of our lawful and
rightful sovereign King GEORGE, taking, at the same
time, the necessary care to maintain the publick peace.
"In pursuance of the acts before-mention'd, this Parliament is now assembled; and we are persuaded, you all
bring with you so hearty a disposition for his Majesty's service, and the publick good, that we cannot doubt of your
assistance in every thing which may promote those great
Gentlemen of the House of Commons,
"We find it necessary to put you in mind, that several
branches of the publick revenue are expir'd by the demise
of her late Majesty; and to recommend to you, the making such provisions, in that respect, as may be requisite to
support the honour and dignity of the Crown: And we as
sure ourselves, you will not be wanting in any thing that
may conduce to the establishing and advancing of the
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"We forbear laying before you any thing that does not
require your immediate consideration, not having receiv'd
his Majesty's pleasure; we shall only exhort you, with the
greatest earnestness, to a perfect unanimity, and a firm Adherence to our Sovereign's interest, as being the only
means to continue among us our present happy tranquility.
An Address to the King resolv'd on.
Hereupon it was resolv'd, nem. con. that an humble Address be presented to his Majesty, which a Committee was appointed to draw up; and it was unanimously resolved also to
take into consideration the next day, the Lords Justices speech
to both Houses.
On the 6th, Mr. William Bromley accordingly reported
the said address; which being read, was unanimously agreed
to, and was as follows:
The Commons Address.
Most gracious Sovereign,
'We your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the
Commons of Great Britain in Parliament assembled,
having a just sense of the great loss the Nation has sustain'd
by the death of our late Sovereign lady Queen Anne, of
blessed memory, humbly crave leave to condole with your
Majesty on this sad occasion.
'It would but aggravate our sorrow, particularly to enumerate the virtues of that pious and most excellent Princess:
The duty we owe to your Majesty, and to our Country,
oblige us to moderate our grief, and heartily to congratulate your Majesty's accession to the throne, whose princely
virtues give us a certain prospect of future happiness, in the
security of our religion, laws, and liberties, and engage
us to assure your Majesty, that we will, to our utmost,
support your undoubted right to the imperial Crown of
this realm, against the Pretender, and all other persons
'Your faithful Commons cannot but express their impatient desire for your Majesty's safe arrival and presence in
'In the mean time, we humbly lay before your Majesty
the unanimous resolution of this House, to maintain the
publick credit of the nation, and effectually to make good
all Funds which have been granted by Parliament, for the
security of any money which has been, or shall be advanced for the publick service, and to endeavour, by every
thing in our power, to make your Majesty's reign happy
Mr Bromley, in his motion for the foregoing address,
dwelt much on the great loss the nation had sustain'd by the
Queen's death; and was back'd by (fn. 2) Mr Robert Walpole,
member for Lynn, who mov'd, that they should give
the King assurances of their making good all Parliamentary
Funds. (fn. 3) Mr Thomas Onslow, member for Guilford, said
thereupon, 'that the principal stress of the Address ought
not to lie upon condoling, but upon congratulating, and
giving the King assurances of their readiness to maintain
both his Majesty's undoubted title to the Crown, and publick Credit.'
Motion for a Supply.
The same day a motion being made, that a Supply be
granted to the King, for the better support of his Majesty's
houshold, &c. the consideration thereof was referred to the
Committee of the whole House the next day, when the same
was agreed to nem. con. and fram'd into a resolution. And
on the 7th a Bill being order'd to be brought in accordingly,
Mr. Wykes, member for Northampton, proposed tacking
to it a Bill for limiting the number of Officers in the House of
Commons, but nobody seconding that motion, it dropp'd.
Mr R. Walpole.
Some members having mov'd for Sir William Wyndham,
bart. member for Somersetshire, and Chancellor of the Exchequer, to be Chairman of the grand Committee of Subsidy, Mr
Robert Walpole reply'd, that Mr. Conyers, member for
East Grinstead, had for so many years so well discharg'd that
office, that it would be ungrateful, unmannerly and imprudent to chuse another; on which Mr Conyers carried it.
Then it was propos'd to give the King one million sterling;
but this motion, tho' not directly oppos'd, afterwards dropt.
Mr Conyers. ; Mr H. Walpole's Motion for paying the Hanoverian Troops, and offering a Reward to apprehend the Pretender.
Aug. 12. Mr. Conyers presented to the house a Bill for the
better support of his Majesty's houshold, &c. and on the second reading thereof the next day, (fn. 4) Mr Horatio Walpole, member for Castle-Rising, mov'd, that the Committee of the whole House, to whom the said Bill was
committed, might have power to receive one clause, to
enable the Lord Treasurer, or Commissioners of the Treasury for the time being, to issue the sum of 65022 l. 8 s. 8 d.
being the arrear due to the troops of Hanover, for their service in the Low Countries in the year 1712, out of the
300,000 l. granted in the last session of Parliament to her late
Majesty, towards satisfying the debt due on account to the
Land-Forces. And another clause to enable and require the
lord high Treasurer, &c. to issue out of any money granted
by parliament 100,000 l. for apprehending the Pretender, if
ever he should land, or attempt to land in any of his Majesty's dominions.
Sir William Wyndham seconded Mr Walpole in the first
clause; and Mr Shippen, member for Saltash, very ingenuously own'd he had oppos'd that payment in the late reign,
but that he was for it now. Mr Aldworth, member for
Windsor, back'd likewise the motion; but as if he design'd
to expose the member, who, at this juncture, appear'd so
forward to pay those very troops, which, a few months before, he had treated as Runaways, he said, "That for his
part, he had formerly been against that payment, because he
had been given to understand, in that very house, that those
troops were Deserters; but that he had since been informed, that they were hir'd to fight, and had serv'd well as
long as there was fighting; and if when they came in fight
of the enemy, they who had hir'd them, would not suffer
them to fight, he did not see the reason why they should be
call'd Deserters." As to the clause, for a reward of 100,000 l.
for apprehending the Pretender, Mr Campion, knight of the
shire for Sussex, said, "That he was not in the House
when that clause was mov'd; but if he had been present, he
would have oppos'd it, because, in his opinion, the Protestant Succession was no longer in danger, since his Majesty's
peaceable accession to the throne; and he defy'd all the house
to prove the contrary." He was seconded by Mr Shippen: but Mr (fn. 5) W. Pulteney, member for Heydon, and, after
him the (fn. 6) lord Lumley, member for Arundel, argu'd,
"That the Protestant Succession was in danger, as long
as there was a Popish Pretender, who had many friends
both at home and abroad: That the late Queen was
sensible of that danger, when she issu'd out her proclamation against him; and that the case was not alter'd by her
Majesty's demise: That the nation would be at no charge,
if the Pretender did not attempt to land; and if he did,
100,000 l. would be well bestow'd to apprehend him." To
which no reply was made.
The Commons having pass'd the Subsidy Bill, and two
others, and the same being also return'd to them pass'd by
the Lords; on the 21st of August the Lords Justices went to
the House of Lords, and the Commons attending, the Speaker, on presenting the Bill, For the better Support of bis Majesty's Houshold, &c. together with another Money-bill, made
the following Speech.
The Speaker's Speech to the Lords Justices, on presenting the Subsidy-Bill, &c.
The Knights, Citizens, and Burgesses of Great Britain, in Parliament assembled, under the present
happiness they enjoy, by his Majesty's peaceable and quiet
accession to the throne, could not enter upon any Work
more satisfactory and pleasing to themselves, than the providing a sufficient revenue for the occasions of his Majesty's
civil government, in order to make his reign as easy and
prosperous, as the beginning of it hath been secure and undisturb'd.
'They are sensible, that the peace of the Kingdom is not
to be preserv'd, nor the rights and liberties of the Subjects
to be protected, without supporting the just authority and
dignity of the Crown; and therefore they have thought it
their interest, as well as duty, to make such a provision, as
may not barely suffice to the necessity of the Government,
but may be suitable to the state, the honour, the lustre,
which the Crown of Great Britain ought to be attended
'Whatsoever is superfluous in that provision, and more
than the ordinary services of his Majesty shall require, will
but enable him to exert his highest and most valuable prerogative of doing good: And we can give no greater proof
of the trust we repose in his Majesty's gracious disposition,
than putting the same entire revenue into his hands, which
her late Majesty died possess'd of; whose virtues we all admir'd, and of whose affections and concern for the religion,
laws, and liberties of this kingdom, we had had so long
'As the Crown itself descends immediately, and knows no
vacancy, the Commons have taken care that the revenue
should follow it as close as possible; for they have given all
the dispatch to this grant, which the forms of their proceedings would allow; so that when his Majesty shall please
to answer the impatient desires of his people, by coming to
take possession of his kingdoms, he will find himself equally
establish'd in these revenues, as if he had succeeded to all
by an uninterrupted right of inheritance; the only difference is this, that if he had inherited them, he would have
wanted one single proof of the duty, and affection, and
unanimity of his subjects.
'Our desire is, that this may be look'd upon as an earnest
and a pledge of that zeal and sidelity which we shall always
retain, and which, upon every occasion, we shall be ready
to demonstrate to his Majesty's person and government: As
such, we hope, his Majesty will graciously accept it at this
time; and hereafter, when he shall have had experience
of this first voluntary offering of his loyal Commons, we
hope he will find it to his satisfaction, as large and as ample
as he could wish; might but the term of the grant be as
long as we could wish, since it is to have equal continuance
with his Majesty's life.
'The Bill which the Commons have pass'd for the purposes I have mention'd, is entitled, An Act for the better
Support of his Majesty's Houshold, &c.
'They have also prepar'd another Bill, entitled, An Act
for rectisying Mistakes in the Names of the Commissioners for
the Land-Tax, and for raising so much as is wanting, to make
up the Sum of Fourteen Hundred Thousand Pounds, intended
to be rais'd by a Lottery for the Publick Service in the Year
1714. This having been recommended to their care, and
appearing to them to be necessary for his Majesty's and the
publick service, they have reason to think, they have abundantly supply'd the defects in the former provision; and in
this assurance, they humbly present this bill also for the
The Royal Assent given thereto.
Then the Lords Justices gave the royal assent to the two
bills mentioned in the foregoing Speech; and to An Act to
enable Persons residing in Great Britain, to take the Oaths,
and do all other Acts in Great Britain, requisite to qualify themselves to continue their respective Places, Offices, and Employments in Ireland.
After which the Lord Chancellor made the following
Speech to both Houses.
Lord Chancellor's Speech to both Houses.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"We cannot but express our greatest satisfaction, and,
in his Majesty's name, return you thanks, for the
convincing proofs which you have given, in this session, of
your duty and affection to his Majesty, and of your zeal
for his government.
"We must particularly thank you, Gentlemen of the House
of Commons, for the aids which you have granted to his
Majesty, for the better support of the honour of the Crown,
and for preventing any disappointment in the Supplies given
in the last session for the service of this year. You may be
assur'd, that the unanimity, the chearfulness, and the dispatch, with which you have proceeded in granting these
aids, will render them yet more acceptable to his Majesty:
And you may depend upon our making a faithful representation thereof to him.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"All necessary business being now happily concluded, it
will be proper for us to put a speedy end to this Session.
We think fit, at present, in his Majesty's name, to desire
you forthwith respectively to adjourn your selves until
After which adjournment, viz. 25th of August, the Commons being met again, Mr Bromley acquainted the House,
that the Lords Justices had receiv'd his Majesty's answer to
the Address of this House at the beginning of this Session;
which he presented to the House, and is as follows:
The King's Answer to the Commons Address.
Your dutiful and loyal Address is very acceptable to
me. The unanimity and affection my Commons
have shewn upon my accession to the Crown, are most agreeable instances and pledges of their fidelity to me. I have
a just sense of your inexpressible loss, by the death of your
late Sovereign. You may be assur'd of my constant endeavours to secure to you the full enjoyment of your religion,
laws, and liberties; and that it will always be my aim, to
make you an happy and flourishing people; to which your
resolution to maintain the publick credit of the Nation,
will greatly contribute. I am hastening to you according
to your earnest desire, and the just expectations of my
After this, the Lords Justices went to the House of Peers,
and the Commons attending, the Lord Chancellor, made the
Lord Chancellor's Speech on proroguing the Parliament.
My Lords and Gentlemen,
"Having, since your late adjournment, receiv'd his
Majesty's most gracious answer, under his sign
manual, to your several addresses; and by his Majesty's
command, order'd them to be deliver'd to you respectively; we do now in his Majesty's name, prorogue this present Parliament 'till Thursday the 23d day of September
next; and this present Parliament is accordingly prorogu'd
to Thursday the 23d day of September next.
The End of the last Session of the fourth Parliament of