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The Times has the following leader on the case :— If one wanted an extreme example of human perversity, it would be supplied by a trial which has just been held in the Court of Queen's Bench—" Comtesse D'Alteyrac v. Lord Willoughby de Bresby." It is characteristic of some per- sons to be insensible to the soandalous nature of their con- duct, to be unable to perceive that there are certain exposures which are more fatal than a whole life of folly and excess. Such people are uncontrollable until it is too late they only draw back and pay a tribute to decency after they have Irretrievably damaged themselves. Lord Willoughby de Eresby, the defendant in this action, belongs to one of the most illustrious families of the English nobility. His title Is among the oldest in the peerage; it is one of those ancient baronies by writ of summons which the possessors often prefer to higher but newer dignities. He is one of the two hereditary Great Chamberlains of England. Born to a large fortune, the only son of estimable and indulgent parents, he has had every advantage that fortune can bestow. Yet in mature age we find him dragging a noble name in the dirt, and through the medium of a court of law publishing to the world not only the errors of his life, but that moral obliquity and insensibility to shame which lead a man to do the meanest actions. In the year 1847 the defendant, then the Hon. Alberic Drummond Willoughby. formed an intimacy with a French lady, the Comtesse d' Alteyrao, and she lived with him as his wife in Paris or in England for no less than seventeen years—that is until December, 1864. In February, 1S48, a daughter was born, who was acknowledged by Mr. Wil- loughby, and was always called Miss Willoaghby up to the time of her marriage. In December, 1864, the Countess, who had always been called Mrs. Willoughby, went to Paris to see her daughter, who was at school, and some time after the late Lord Willoughby, the de- fendant's father, died. From pecuniary motives the new Lord desired to separate from his companion. By means of an intermediary he offered her £1,500 or £2,000 a year. According to her counsel, at the trial, she left Caen Lodge, the defendant's residence, and went to Paris on the understanding that these terms were to be earned out But she has since received only £ 800, and the de- fendant, moreover, took possession of and sold the furniture and other effects, which, as she alleges, belonged to het. Thus Lord Willoughby, after living with this lady for up- wards of seventeen years, forsakes his companion, evades the payment of an annuity which had been promised to her, and even takes possession of the furniture and effects which perhaps legally, but at any rate in honour and equity, be- longed to ber. Tnis, however, is not all. The lady, left without means, brings an action to recover the value of the property to which she thought herself entitled. Most men, if they "had done a shabby thing under the impulse of weariness or dis- like, would take care to remedy it before the matter became known to the world. If their own good feeling or their own prudence were insufficient to prompt them rightly, they would listen to the advice of friends, who would tell them that they were about to wash their dirty linen very publiciy indeed. A peer 01 the realm must choose his associates and advisers very badly If he has no one to dissuade him from coming into court to resist a claim from a deserted woman, who had at any rate been his partner during the whole of his early manhood, and who was the mother of his child. Lord Willoughby not only does this, but he gives instructions to take every advantage. Even the reception of the judg- ment of the French Court which separated the Countess from her husband was objected to by Mr. Hawkins on the ground that there was no proof of the seal of the Court, nor of the record or proceedings on which the iu de- ment was granted. This was too much for the Chief Justice, who said he had never heard such unworthy objections, and reminded the learned counsel that he represented a public character. On this Mr. Hawkins assured his Lordship that he was entirely without discretion in the matter, and that he was bound by his instructions to admit nothing. In fact, the defendant had pleaded that the Ceuntess, being- a married woman, had no right to sue in her own name. To live in adultery with a married woman, and then publicly to allege her marriage as a bar to her claim, surpasses almost anything that can be conceived of meanness. It was not until the Chief Justice interposed with an emphasis and viva- city seldom witnessed in a court of justice that the scandalous scene came to a close. The defendant's counsel had been even forced to cross-examine the plaintiff as to the paternity of the daughter who during her whole life had been recognized by the defendant as his own child. A compromise was proposed by Mr. Hawkins, but it could not be accepted without Lord Willoughby's signature, for Mr. Coleridge said he knew "his Lordship had given his attorney written instructions to allow no terms to be entered jnto." But the Chief Justice declared that the case ought to out of court, "for there seemed to be no com- the defendant of the plaintiffs misconduct, and g together fer fifteen years (they had come to Ji;,>ln 18*9) a man with no grounds for such complaint, had no right to turn a woman adrift upon the streets. _bo thepartiesi agreed to adjourn the trial, that the defendant, who^wasinithecountry, might be communicated with. OnMonday Mr. Hawkins announced Lord Willoughby's consent to a compromise, on the basis that the whole matter should be refesred te a man of honour to be named by the Judge, this gentlenan being at Uberty to fix not only the terms on which the claims in this action were te be satisfied but also the terms upen which the separation of the parties was to continue, and the allowance which ought to be made by the defendant. Well might the Chief Justice regret that this satisfactory termination had not been arrived at earlier Lord Wil. loughby has gained nothing pecuniarily by his sharp practice and the technical objections which the ingenuity of his law., yers devised. He will have, in the end, to give a decent support to his former companion, and he had better haye- done it at once. Ou the other hand, it will be a long time before those who have read this ugly case will forget it; and in these days such cases are read by millions. Lord Willoughby de Eresby, Lord Great Chamberlain, had a character and dignity to lose, at least among those who did not know him. They, the great body of the public, are now aware to what so highly placed a person can descend. His conduct not onlv affixes a stigma on himself, but, however unjustly, reflects discredit on the office he bears and the order to which he belongs.

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