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The English anti-Catholic Press

20 February 1829

The following report is taken from the Edinburgh Review of February 1829; the Review reproduced reports from other newspapers.

From the Times

We choose to head, as it is technically called, what we are going to say, for the purpose of attracting notice, though the article itself be, what is usually termed "a leading article." Will the public be surprised? No; the respectable British public will not be surprised when we inform them, that circular letters have been forwarded from the General Brunswick Club in Dublin to all the Provincial clubs in that kingdom, calling, in the most urgent terms, for supplies of money "'to fee the London press," and the sum of TWO THOUSAND POUNDS was actually remitted to England for that purpose on the Saturday, the 7th inst. What are we to say of villains so base as this (and we believe they come from Ireland, too, some of them), who thus rant, and send forth their daily and weekly venom for pay? "Circulars in Ireland, for supplies of money to fee the London Press!!" Hence, the opposition, such as it is, to the grand measure, now in preparation — a dark, and obscure, and unavailing opposition, except that it avails those who carry it on; for no part of the intelligence Press of London is against the removal of the disabilities under which Catholics labour. Intelligent and well-educated writers of all descriptions are of the same opinion upon the subject as intelligent statesmen are and ever have been: they are identified in their views and convictions with such men as Pitt, and Fox, and Burke, and Windham, and Canning, and Plunket, and Brougham, and (more recently), as the Duke of Wellington and Mr Peel.

No matter how we have become acquainted with the secret, which we have above communicated, but we should think it. "passing strange" if Mr Henry Maxwell and Mr Moore, have been interrogated in House, can deny all knowledge of it.

So, then, this is the public cause, is it? The Constitution of England! — the Protestant Ascendancy, as settled at the Revolution! — that a few needy scoundrels should be fee'd, who, if their pay were stopped, would immediately turn round and assert the rights of the Catholics to equal power.

From the Courier

It will be seen that though the Times alludes circulars sent by the general Brunswick Club for supplies of money "to fee the London Press," it asserts that this corruption applies only to be Anti-Catholic Press — that is, to those daily and weekly papers which are against the Catholic Question.

We passed by, as unworthy of a single observation, the complacent eulogy bestowed upon the papers which are for the removal of the Catholic disabilities. They are of course "the intelligent press," and "all intelligent and well-educated writers of all descriptions with them" whilst papers and writers of different principles are bigoted, illiberal, without any intelligence, and have never had any education at all. If bedaubing themselves with praise, and bestowing abuse upon their opponents, afford the least amusement to the liberals, we have not the slightest objection to their exhibiting as often as they please, such proofs of fine taste and good education. Our business is with the charge which the Times has advanced with such a positiveness and authority. In the first place, as we have never seen any of these circulars, but as the Times may have, it will probably, as an act of justice, published a copy of these circulars, in order to establish its first assertion, that circulars for money to fee the London papers have actually been issued. In justice, too, the Times will furnish further information with respect to the £2000, which it asserts to have been "actually remitted for that purpose, on Saturday the 7th inst." Those who have communicated that information can probably state the circumstances which accompanied and followed that remission. Above all, as the names of two members have been mentioned, Mr Henry Maxwell, the member for Lisburne, and Mr Moore, the member for Dublin, as gentlemen who, if "interrogated in the House," cannot "deny all knowledge of it," we earnestly call upon them to communicate this evening in their places, all the information, all the details, even the most minute, withholding nothing, softening nothing, neither names nor dates, which they can supply, upon a subject relative to which so immediate and direct an appeal has been made to them.

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