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was well for the government of that company thai they were not; they were State papers and were very improperly brought into court. They related to the interests of a great commercial company, whose concerns no person charged with having committed a misdemeanor had any business to unravel. There was no power upon earth to force them here without the consent of their owners, and most strangely had they mistaken their duty in producing them. There was no real interest of any served by their production, and the interests of the company, and through theirs, those of the commercial world might be materially injured by it, if it became a precedent.

As to the paragraph itself, gentlemen, you have heard it; the substance of it is, that the Emperor of Russia is a tyrant to his own subjects, and ridiculous in the face of Europe. Between the sovereign and the people of every country there is an express or an implied compact for a government of justice; by which the former is most solemnly and emphatically bound not to be tyrannical or unjust; yet here he is wantonly said to be a transgressor against all decency in the administration of his trust. I can only say, that if one were so to offend another in private life in this country, it might be made the subject of an action; and when these papers went to Russia, and held up this great Sovereign as being a tyrant, and

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ridiculous over Europe, it might tend to his calling for satisfaction as for a national affront, if it passed unreprobated by our government and in our courts of Justice.

It is for you, gentlemen of the jury, who come out of that rank which enables you to judge of the interests of the commercial world, to pronounce whether this is, or is not, a dangerous publication. I am bound by my oath to declare my own opinion; and I should forget my duty, if I were not to say to you that it is a gross libel.

The jury withdrew, and, after remaining out of court nearly an hour, returned a verdict of guilty against all the defendants. On the 30th day of May sentence was passed, that the proprietor of the Courier be confined six months in the King's Bench Prison, and pay a fine of one hundred pounds, besides giving sureties for his good behavior for five years. The printer and publisher were each sentenced to one month's confinement in the same prison.

THE

TRIAL OF THOMAS HARDY

FOR HIGH TREASON.

This prominent, and in every way remarkable trial, had its origin in the measures of parliamentary reform which were, by the aid of secret societies, attempted to be brought about during the latter part of the last century. In the year 1794, several of these societies were in existence and in active operation throughout England, among others, the "Corresponding Society,” and the “Society for Constitutional Information.” Though some of their proceedings and printed addresses were of an inflammatory character, yet in the main the members and leaders were warmly devoted to the government and the constitution.

No other explanation of the conduct of the government in indicting the members of these societies for high treason, can be satisfactorily given than a foolish and causeless dread of the influence of the French Revolution upon the public mind in England. Never, perhaps, in the history of any free State, were more frantic efforts attempted on behalf of government to secure a conviction than in these memorable “State Trials.” Secret committees were appointed in both Houses of Parliament, upon whose reports the habeas corpus act was suspended to facilitate the prosecutions. The preamble to the bill suspending the writ recited that, “whereas, a treacherous and detestable conspiracy has been formed for subverting the existing laws and constitu

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tion, and for introducing the system of anarchy and confusion which has so lately prevailed in France," etc. In addition to thus declaring by act of Parliament that the treacherous conspiracy, which should have been left to the finding of a jury, already existed, a large mass of testimony was collected by the committees just before the trial of Hardy, the printed reports of which had been circulated, from which most of the evidence used by the Crown upon the trial was drawn. Authority was also given for the detention, without bail, of persons then in custody or who should thereafter be committed on mere suspicion of being engaged in the supposed conspiracy.

These legislative preparations to secure a judicial conviction having been completed, the grand jury for the county of Middlesex found an indictment for high treason against twelve members of the reform societies, charging them with having conspired to call a convention for the purpose of effecting a revolution.

The indictment charged, in substance, that the prisoners, being subjects of our lord the King, not having the fear of God in their hearts, nor weighing the duty of their allegiance, but being moved and seduced by the instigation of the devil, as false traitors against our said lord the King, their supreme, true, lawful, and undoubted lord, and wholly withdrawing the cordial love and true and due obedience which every true and faithful subject of our said lord the King should and of right ought to bear toward our said lord the King, and contriving, and with all their strength intending, traitorously to break and disturb the peace and common tranquility of this kingdom of Great Britain, and to stir, move, and excite insurrection, rebellion, and war against our said lord the King within this kingdom, and to subvert and alter the legislature, rule, and government now duly and happily established in this kingdom, and to depose our said lord the King from his royal state, title, power, and government of this kingdom, and to bring and put our said lord the King to death, on the first day of March, in the thirty-third year of the reign of our Sovereign lord the now King, and on divers other days and times, maliciously and traitorously, with force and arms, etc., did amongst themselves, and together with divers other false traitors, to the said jurors unknown, conspire, compass, imagine, and intend to stir up, move, and excite insurrection, rebellion, and war against our said lord the King, within this kingdom of Great Britain, and to subvert and alter the legislature, rule, and government now duly and happily established within this kingdom of Great Britain, and to depose our said lord the King from the royal state, title, power, and government of this kingdom, and to bring and put our said lord the King to death. And that to fulfill, perfect, and bring to effect their most evil and wicked treason and treasonable compassings and imaginations aforesaid, they, with force and arms, maliciously and traitorously did meet, conspire, consult, and agree among themselves, and together with divers other false traitors, to the said jurors unknown, to cause and procure a convention and meeting of divers subjects of our said lord the King to be assembled and held within this kingdom, with intent and in order that the persons to be assembled at such convention and meeting should and might wickedly and traitorously, without and in defiance of the authority, and against the will of the Parliament of this kingdom, subvert and alter, and cause to be subverted and altered, the legislature, rule, and government now duly and happily established in this kingdom, and depose and cause to be deposed our said lord the King from the royal state, title, power, and government thereof. And further to fulfill, perfect, and to bring to effect their most evil and wicked treason and treasonable compassings and imaginations aforesaid, and in order the more readily and effectually to assemble such convention and meeting as aforesaid, for the traitorous purposes aforesaid, and thereby to accomplish the same purposes, they, together with divers other false traitors, to the jurors unknown, maliciously and traitorously did compose and write, and did then and there maliciously

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