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Notes and Comments. ¡{T


Notes and Comments. ¡{T THE OPENING OF PARLIAMENT. THE first gathering of the present Parliament took place on Monday. This was the commencement of the fourteenth during the reign of Queen Victoria. The Queen not being present in person caused letters patent to be issued constituting the Lord Chancellor and other noble lords her Commissioners to psrform all that was necessary in her Majesty's name, and on ber part. The Commons were duly summoned to the House of Lords, and the letters patent were read. The Commons were then directed to their proper place, and elect a Speaker. During the afternoon about 25 peers were sworn in, and whilst this was proceeding in the Lords, the Commons were engaged in electing the Speaker. Sir John Mowbray moved the re-election of Mr Gully. This was seconded by Mr John Ellis, and carried unanimously. Mr Gully was then escorted to the Chair by Sir John Mow- bray, Mi John Ellis following. After addressing a few words of thanks to the House, the Speaker took his seat, and the Serjeant-at-Arms placed the mace on the table. Mr Balfour, in tbe name of the House, congratulated the Speaker upon his election, as did Sir William Harcourt, on behalf of the Opposition. Thus ended the first day's work of the new Parliament. ON Tuesday the Speaker and the Commons were summoned to the Lords. Mr Gully having submitted himself for her Majesty's approbation, the Lord Chancellor, in reply, intimated that her Majesty was so fully sensible of his zeal for the public service and undoubted efficiency to execute the duties of the position, that she readily approved his election. In the Commons the swearing in of members took place. This also occupied the time of the House on Wednesday. ON Thursday the Queen's Speech was read, and what did it contain ? Absolutely nothing, and nothing has been defined as "a footless stocking without a leg. Of course, this much and no more was expected. An old saying has it—" Blessed is he that expecteth nothing, for he shall not be disappointed." It is probable that the present Session will only be of short duration, and that it will then adjourn until- February. In the meantime the Government will have ample time for administrative work.

His Optics in Mourning.