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POLITICAL GOSSIP. --+-

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POLITICAL GOSSIP. --+- AT this moment every member of the reigning familyof this country is absent from it there is no Parliament (duly sworn and authorised) in existence, scarcely any,of 'her Majesty's Ministers are resident in town, and yet, notwithstanding the machinations of the Fenian Brotherhood, peace reigns in all our' borders. LETTERS from Homburg say that that favourite watering-place has just now a large number of lions. Chief among them is Von Bismarck. Besides him, Lord Granville, Sir Charles Wood, the Duke of Man- chester, the Earl of Dartmouth, and nearly a dozen other English Peers either are or have been staying there. THE Conservatives of Totnes have served notices of objection on 130 voters, tenants of the Duke of Somerset. It has been stated that all these voters are manufactured. THE Ifl. F. Lygon, M.P. for West Worcestershire, -will,it,y, nderstood be one of the whippers-in of the Oonserity hre party in the new Parliament, in the place 6^0 ct, Henry Whitmore, who has lost his seat for BriagAll'th. A SHORT time since an unlucky vestryman in a "council north of Oxford-street happened to tell the favourite orator of the vestry that his proposal was contrary to an Act of Parliament. Acts of Parlia- ment be anathematised!" returned the indignant lopea-ker, "let's have a show of hands." ON Friday the Act 28 and 29 Yia., cap. 68, came into force, allowing the duty on malt to be charged according to the weight of the grain used. The standard is fixed at 53 lb. per measured bushel. The number of bushels is to be ascertained by gauge (as usual heretofore), but this number is diminished increased in proportion to the weight of the grain before the duty is charged—thus As 56 is the weight of the barley, so is the quantity per ga-uge, to the quantity to be charged with duty. Hence it appears to be an advantage to the trader in respect of those samples weighing less than 53 lb.; but for those more than 53 lb., the Chancellor of the Exchequer has the advantage. It is, therefore, a problem for the maltster and the farmer to resolve as to the value of the ad. vantage this Act affords, and they are allowed for the testing of the operation, four years; which is fixed for the continuance of the Act. PREPARATIONS FOR A REFORM BILL.-In accord- anco with a resolution of the House of Commons, moved for by Mr. Balaes, the clerks of the several boards of guardians have received from the Poor-law Board, London, a circular requesting to be furnished. with a return of male occupiers who are assessed in the valuation lists now in force at the gross estimated rentals as follows:—-Under X4, J £ 4 and under £ 5, < £ 5 and under X6, X6 and under £ 7, X7 and under .£8, ■ £ 8 and under £ 9, £ 9 and under £ 10, < £ 10 and ov«, to^6tn6t wif.li tlao .pouoJatTAn. fffrtss rental} and number of electors on the register, with an esti- mate of the number of electors if the franchise were extended to male oceupiers assessed at a gross esti- mated rental of .£9, .£8, .£7, and J26. ABOUT 300 of the butchers of Preston, with their wives, paid a visit to Knowsley, in compliance with an invitation given a short time ago by the Hon. F. A. Stanley, M.P. The party were received most hospitably by the Earl and Countess of Derby. An excellent dinner was provided for the men, end their -wives, at the request of the countess, partook of tea, at the hall. During the day Lord Derby joined the company, and expressed the pleasure he had felt in entertaining them. The butchers of Preston have long been stanch supporters of the Derby family, and whenever Lord Derby has visited Preston, they have always given him a most enthusiastic reception. When the Hon. F. A. Stanley made hia appearance at the iate election at Preston the same party were the foremost to welcome him. Here would have been a good opportunity to discuss the cattle disease, which, -for want of the idea,, has been lost to all ages. SHORTLY after Mr. Gladstone lost his seat for the University of Oxford at the last general election a large number of gentlemen who appreciated the ser. vices which, during a period of eighteen years, the rigbt hon. gentleman rendered to the Church and the. Unive^sity, determined to ■commemorate those ser- vices by some adequate memorial. A subscription ( was at once opened, confined to Masters of Arts and such as have taken higher degrees, whether their jiamesare at preselat on the books of their colleges or not, ^,D~, ierable sum has already been con- tributed jnr.Ji6 ot:)ject in view. What is to be action foi I!ty large ?u? r OvforrT8^3' exhibitions, and other benefactions at Oxford, it ^was generally thought undesirable to add to them ln the p *esent stanee. It was next suggested that a portrait of the right hon. gentleman should be placed in the Bo4]e-iall library, a proposition which met with very conquer- able favour. Another proposal, originating with an influential section of contributors to the fund, was that a marble statue, representing the right hon. gentleman, should be placed in a conspicuous position in the University. Judging from the expression or opinion amongst the subscribers, so far as opportunities have been aforled for obtaining it, the last suggestion is •that most in accordance with the views of the great ,body of contributors. Immediate steps, however, will be taken to ascertain what are really the views of the subscribers generally to the fund, and then jwxlelay in immediately carrying them out will be per- mitted.

LITERATURE AWD THE AKTS. --

DEAD BODIES IN THE THAMES.

A SCENE AT A FUNERAL.

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A STRANGE BUT TRUE STORY.…

'.OUR MISCELLANY. -+-

SINGULAR COMBINATION OF CIRCUMSTANCES.

-THE COURT. ----+---

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EXTRACTS FROM " PUNCH " &…

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