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Yet up to this day, the mill-owners in England and Wales have successfully in this, as in other cases, resisted undertaking such work and small expenditure on the old plea of ruin and confiscation.
Nearly all the other difficulties attending the restoration of the English salmon fisheries have been cured except the making of fish-passes and gratings. Pollution of rivers is undergoing a separate solution. The annual close season in Scotland and Ireland is longer by a fortnight and is made variable; this the English close season, by a few slight amendments of the law, may be made to imitate. The weekly close season ought to be forty-eight hours, as in Ireland ; and, indeed, it would be sound policy to extend it from Friday night at 9 P.M. to Monday morning at 6 A.M., a period of fifty-seven hours, as a set-off against the tendency to tidal overfishing. Boards of conservators ought to have ample powers of repairing fish-passes, for they are the waywardens of the fish, and their bailiffs should, as in Ireland, have power to traverse the banks of all waters frequented by salmon. Boards of conservators ought to have the power of making bye-laws on a few subjects within certain limits, as sanitary authorities have in all parts of England. Mr. Dodds' Bill on the subject of byelaws and fish-passes carefully provides for all the leading difficulties of the position, and protects mills as well as fisheries from arbitrary, unnecessary, and frivolous interference with each other. Mr. Dillwyn's Bill, though an offshoot from Mr. Dodds’ Bill, and borrowing many good points from it, yet shows a very imperfect appreciation of the necessities of the case as regards weirs and fish-passes. There has been much misapprehension as to the constitution of Boards of Conservators. Mr. Dodds, in working out the recommendations of the Select Committee of 1870, proposed to make the boards elective. At present the vast numbers of gentlemen nominated and ex-officio-in some cases exceeding a hundred--are only a dead weight on the working powers of the body. All the work is done by one or two persons. It would be better to restrict the number to about a dozen working members, and get at the right men by election. At present, nearly four-fifths of the funds are obtained from the license duties paid by the tidal fisheries, and these should be fairly represented on the board. Mr. Dodds proposed to give a clear majority of two-thirds to the representatives of the upper fisheries, while Mr. Dillwyn seeks to leave the boards much as they are, only . adding more
to that which hath too much. The mode of electing boards of conservators is, however, not a very important matter, and
may be fairly left to find its level. Ireland is divided into seventeen fishery districts, the members of the boards being chiefly elected, and these work well. Scotland some years ago was parcelled out into 120 fishery districts, but only thirty of them have boards; and, though all the Scotch fisheries are in private hands, few persons take the trouble to enforce the law. In England there are thirty-seven fishery boards, but several good rivers are still left to look after themselves. In Ireland, the license duties and percentage valuation assessment for 1871 amounted to 8,8651. 15s. 9d. The anglers were 2,787, and paid 2,7871. as license duty. In England and Wales, the license duties yielded, in 1871,6,2661. 2s. Id. The anglers were 1,616, and paid 1,2401. license duties. In Scotland there are no returns.
Though the proper regulation of the salmon fisheries has vexed the Legislatures of England and Scotland for six centuries, and of Ireland nearly as long, it can scarcely be said that all the bearings of the subject had been explored until very recently. The discovery of the salmon-stair forty-five years ago, and which is only now beginning to be understood, was the turning-point, which enabled the Legislature to do all that legislation can do. The Legislature cannot do more than enable those chiefly interested to help themselves. After providing adequate machinery, by which these little communities may make a common purse so as to repress each individual's enormities; and, above all, by giving them the short and easy way now proposed, of throwing open all the breeding places which Nature has provided for salmon, but which, from want of timely discovery and easy redress, had been inadvertently closed, we may safely predict the speedy arrival of the time when a Salmon Fishery Bill will cease to be an annual trial of the legislative temper.
ART. VII.-- State Papers preserved in the State Paper Depart
ment of Her Majesty's Public Record Office. English Do
mestic Series : 1639-41. TR TRADITION—for, alas ! those honoured historians, Hallam
and Macaulay, must now be reckoned as of the past imputes to them an indifference to the study of unprinted stores of information. Of such master-minds, however, it is not for us to reason; a mere student may well content himself with a declaration of that ancient antiquary, Sir Simonds D'Ewes, that records and other exotic monuments of antiquity are the most ravishing and satisfying part of human know• ledge. Yet even so rapturous an authority was not wanted to impress on us the value of this class of information, after a two months' sojourn in the Rolls Office, spent by the kind permission of Sir T. Duffus Hardy, and with most generous help from the late Mr. John Bruce, in examining the domestic 6 series ' of papers relating to the years 1639-41. It may have been because the transactions therein recorded are among the most critical, of the most critical portion of our history; or perhaps the feeling arose from the gradual process of the study; yet it seemed, while day after day we turned the documents leaf by leaf, that the very events themselves that produced the call of the Long Parliament, November, 1640, had been placed before our eyes, and that we had seen King Charles, in the summer of 1639, leading his disorderly train of courtiers and their followers, equally undisciplined, against the Scotch Covenanters; so quickly to retreat, even at the sight of old, little, crooked' Lesly and his well-drilled army. Seen too how the King, recoiling to make his second attempt, and calling for aid on that man of deep reach' and daring counsel, Strafford, summoned the Short Parliament of 1640 ; and dispersed it, lest the House of Commons should interfere with his darling project, the subjugation of Scotland.* Though the picture of England during the summer of 1640 afforded by those papers, is of necessity but disjointed and full of petty detail, still it exhibits the King's fated obstinacy, the perplexity of his Ministers, and the misery of all, to a degree far beyond any printed story of that year; and shows that the call of the Long Parliament brought no remission to the anxiety and unrest that Charles inflicted on his subjects. Even the very habit and passion of that eventful time seemed to dwell amid those bundles of torn and yellowed documents.
The fevered yet imperious touch of Strafford's pen, and the sneaking, crawling writing of the elder Vane, alike bore witness to an inevitable antagonism between the men, and bespoke its result; even the 'gallows-mark' figured
The King attributed that dissolution of Parliament to a quarrel with the Commons about supply, and historians accept that assertion; but his true motive seems to have been because, as we learn from an intercepted letter in the Rolls Office, our parliament this day (5 May,
1640) are about to petition His Majesty to hearken to a reconciliation with you his subjects of Scotland.' A statement confirmed by Mrs. Hutchinson, Mem., ed. 1863, p. 90; see also Oldmixon, ii. 148, and Baker's Chron., p. 458.
on their official letters, to warn loiterers of their fate, if they did not hast, post, hast,' attuned the mind in accordance with the past. Nor was the teaching power of these documents confined merely to sympathetic suggestions such as these. New and striking illustrations are afforded of those influences that swayed the destiny of Charles I. Among the well-known causes of his overthrow, was rage provoked by priestly tyranny. And the madness of the people' will not be thought strange when it is known, that to the mutilation and imprisonment of the victims of ecclesiastical wrath, the Privy Council sought to add the fire round the stake.
The State Papers for the year 1639 show that this desire was seriously entertained; and that the Government wished to rekindle the flames of Smithfield, not for the benefit of one high in social position, but to conquer the recusancy of a common stonemason, by name John Trendall. The evidence of this intention lies in an application made by the Privy Council for a lesson in the art of burning heretics in a legal way. And they turned naturally to that minister of religion who last performed this feat—to Richard Neile, then Archbishop of York, who, when Bishop of Lichfield, had ordained the burning of Wightman, April, 1614, by command of James I. That act of ministration Neile seems to have performed with conscientious gaiety of heart; nor had an intervening quarter of a century, in the least, dulled his ardour to burn a herctic again. Writing to tell Laud, that a copy • of the certificate made to his Majesty of Blessed Memory,
whereupon the writ to burn Wightman issued forth,' had been duly forwarded to the Council, there being now the like
occasion of proceeding against one Trendall, the archbishop adds, that Wightman's execution did a great deal of good • in this Church, and that the present times do require the * like exemplary punishment.' Hardness of heart is but the natural growth of despotic power; it is the confident security of the holders of that power, in the year 1639, that is so remarkable in Trendall's case: as it is evident that they were far more desirous to burn somebody, than careful what that poor body was to be burnt for. A more inoffensive blas• phemous heretic' than the stonemason could not be. Trendall was simply a Nonconformist. He held that our Saviour • Christ was head and Lord of his Church ;' therefore, bis conscience disapproved of creeds, and forbade his attendance on episcopally ordered worship. And though he asserted that. Christ's ordinances were not in our Church; still it was proved that he prayed for the King in becoming lan
guage. Trendall also denied the holding of conventicles,' -admitting, however, that he conversed at divers peoples'
houses, that sent for him ;' and it would seem that he availed himself of this privilege, by preaching continuously for five hours at a stretch.* These were Trendall's offences : aud to them he added that of obstinacy: for he deemed the command, 'fear not ye the reproach of men,' to be more sacred than the injunctions of the Council Board. So he was thrown into the Fleet Prison; if possible, he was to be burnt at the stake.
To appreciate fairly this proposal, we must revert to the precedent set by Archbishop Neile in his condemnation of Wightman, April, 1614. Being consulted on that occasion, the · King's attorney and his solicitor 'made no doubt · but ' that the law was clear to burn a blasphemous heretic;' and Wightman's fate received approval, also, from Archbishop Abbot and Lord Chancellor Ellesmere. The sanction, however, of one eminent legal authority of the time was not solicited, as King James did not much approve' a reference of the question to Sir E. Coke, - lest by his singularity of • opinion he should give a stay to the business.' † But this wretched precedent of that ill-favoured reign did not apply to Trendall. His blasphemy consisted in preferring the authority of the Lord Jesus to that of my Lord Archbishop of Canterbury. He was not a Unitarian ; Wightman was: a form of heresy at that time so offensive, that his doom was held even by Thomas Fuller, who usually enjoyed a Christian frame of mind, to be a sacrifice acceptable to God. I
How or when the stonemason was released from prison, we do not know; this, at least, is certain, that the Long Parliament came soon enough to save him from the fire. But if Trendall thus disappoints a horror-loving reader, we are indebted to his recusancy for a marked illustration of the temper of the King's statesmen just before the outbreak they provoked; and for the following graphic description of the last occasion when the stake was used in England as a defender of the faith. $
Wightman, it would seem, was sent by King James for
Statement and Depositions, dated 27 July, 1639. Rolls Office. † Correspondence between Archbishop Abbot and Lord-Chancellor Ellesmere. (Egerton Papers, 417, 448.) | Fuller's Church History,' book x. p. 61 (ed. 1656).
Archbishop of York to Sir D. Carleton, 9 August, 1639. Rolls Office.