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their own children like their neighbours of the same class in society. The wealthier members of the body, too, have been most laudably zealous in affording, by their charitable contributions, the blessings of instruction to many of their poorer brethren. Thus the various schools established on the British and Foreign Society's plan, receive many thousands of their children, as well as of the children of churchmen. But it is neither true that Disscnters alone support those schools, nor that all their poor, or any thing like it, receive the needful portion of instruction, There are whole districts in London and its neighbourhood, and in all the great towns of Lancashire, Yorkshire, Cheshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire, where the Dissenters form á considerable proportion of the population, and where the means of education are wanting to their poor, as well as to the other classes of poor, in the same, or nearly the same, proportions, While we admit how much this respectable body of men havę done for education, let us not forget, in the present argument, how much has been done by the piety and benevolence of the Establishment. The Digest shows that permanent endowments exist in England, with a revenue, at this moment, of above 300,000l. a year, but which is worth, if duly improved, and all property included, ncar half a million, which alreacly afford edus cation to 165,000 children, and might, with case, instruct 200,000; and it is certain that this magnificent work is all raiscd by the hands of churchmen, who have thus for ever provided the means of educating two millions of the people. Were we to reason upon the principles adopted by those whom we are now most reluctantly forced to combat, we should be entitled to contend, that such good works of the Church well entitled her to confidence in this question. At least they who argue that no scheme should be adopted against the wishes of the Dissenters, because those worthy and conscientious men have done so much for education themselves, may fairly be met by a statement of how much more has been done by the E-tablishment; and all the pains taken, and zeal displayed by the resident parochial clergy in helping the labours of the Education Committee, may well be appealed to in further support of the same argument.
To conclude, we firmly believe that we have now been meeting the reasons of a few only among them; and we most earnestly implore the Dissenters at large to turn a deaf ear towards any restless agitators who may, on the present important occasion, seek the means of gratifying their own spleen or vanity by fomenting suspicions and ill will among their more respectable and conscientious brethren. It is not very easy, however pleasing it might be, to refuse our belief to the suggestion, that a
mong the reasons which have been urged in different quarters, there are some on which those who used them for the purposes of controversy did not place any reliance; and that other motives dictated the opposition which those arguments were einployed to justify. The body of the Dissenters never can so far shut their eyes to all that passes around them, as to believe that all the poor are well educated—or even all their own poor; nor can they so far forget all their own principles of pure and enlightened charity, as to be lukewarm upon the question of a plan for universal instruction. What they do not really believe, they are wholly incapable of maintaining as a cover for what they chuse not to avow. A more honest body of men exists not in the world, nor one more devoted to the cause of civil liberty, and more desirous of promoting the improvement of their fellow-creatures. To them at large we should fearlessly appeal, even if the question were about founding, at the expense of the whole community, a system which could only give full instruction to the children of all churchmen ; because they know so well the infinite importance of even this good to the whole State, and to its liberties, religious as well as civil, that they would cheerfully contribute their share towards the attainment of it, and overlook the injustice of being made to pay for benefits from which their own sect were excluded.
Why do we express such a confidence in their liberality ? Because they are at once enlightened and humane-but also because we never heard of their raising any serious objection either to the annual grants to the poor clergy, or to the million lately voted for building churches, to which they contributed their share, although without the possibility of benefiting by it-nay, with the avowed reason of the grant before their
eyes, that the want of churches multiplied sectaries. Can we doubt that, in behalf of Education, they would make equal sacrifices? No--But they are called upon to make none at all. Their scruples are consulted; their peculiar interests are preserved; the schools which they are require ed to support are, in the strictest and largest sense of the word, schools for all. It would be in the highest degree unjust, then, to suspect them of joining the clamour which some are trying to raise; above all, of endeavouring to cry down the whole Plan, without attempting to amend the parts which they dislike, and of using arguments which go to stop every effort in favour of National Education, because some of the measures proposed appear to them objectionable. Let us hope that such attempts will fail as they deserve; and that the painful sight will not, upon this great occasion, be displayed, of the best friends to the happiness and improvement of mankind taking the very course
most agreeable to the victims of bigotry, and the patrons of servile principles.
* As a justification of our distrust in the candour of some active men in London among the Dissenters, we may mention the appearance of resolutions concerning Mr Brougham's plan, because it imposed a Sacramental Test, a week after the provision had been openly given up.
We have avoided loading this article with a comparative statement of the Scotch System of Parish Schools, and the System proposed for England, because we trust that we shall soon have an opportunity of discussing the improvements that are universally admitted to be wanting in the former ; and notice has been given in Parliament that these will be made the subject of a separate measure. We may here observe, however, upon the subject of the prejudices said to be entertained by our Presbyterian brethren of the South, against the interference of the Parson with the appointment, and of the Bishop with the superintendence of Masters, that this principle, mutatis mutandis, is amply recognised in our Scotch scheme. The minister, with the heritors, elects; the Presbytery approves and visits-remov. ing without appeal, if it thinks fit. Undoubtedly the Presbytery, acting as a court, may be, in the eyes of Presbyterians at least, better fit to discharge the visitatorial office. But an Episcopalian establishment must, of necessity, entrust the bishop with that function. And let us only ask the objectors, whether they would be satisfied with vesting the power of approbation and visitation in a body of the neighbouring clergy_which is the case in our Presbyterian scheme? Surely they would, on behalf of the Dissenters, not prefer this to one minister and a bishop. The Seceders, Baptists, and Catholics in Scotland, have never yet objected to our plan of school discipline ; and yet there are whole districts in the North peopled with Catholics, and some of the most populous of the districts in the West are filled with Baptists and other sectaries.
We shall add two facts here respecting the use of the Education Inquiry generally. In one county in Scotland, four advertisements to contract for building parish schools, appeared immediately after the Education circular reached the neighbourhood, and showed that the eyes of that watchful Committee were turned towards it. The law had thus been evaded for above a century.
In the last Report of the Commissioners under Mr Brougham's acts, the St Bees' school coal is stated to have been taken constantly during the last 20 years, by the Lonsdale family, under their celebrated lease for 867 years, at 3l. rent ; and they are stated by the Commissioners to have, in that time, raised from thence no less than
00 cubick yards or tons of the coal! See the attacks on the Education Committee now.
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