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J FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 26TH. j' HOUSE OF COMMONS. Mr. Curzon, answering Mr. Flynn, read a telegram from the British Consul at Canea to the effect that no fire had been exchanged ) between Greek and Turkish troops on the western front since Sunday. On the southern front Christians and Mussulmans had had some desultory skirmishing. He gave some details of the military situation. In answer to Mr. Bryn Roberts, who asked whether, in or about November, 1895, one of the great Powers of Europe made a proposal to Great Britain to enter the Dardanelles and seize the Sultan, and if so, what reply was made by the Mr. Curzon said no such pro- posal was made to the Government. ) Mr. Bryce said the question was taken from the speech of M. Hanotaux, and asked if it was correct. Mr Curzon said he did not understand that M. Hanotaux said anything about a proposal to Her Majesty's Government. Replying to Mr. Bryn Roberts, Sir M. White Ridley said he had seen lihe statement which appeared in the 'Manchester Guardian' of the 23rd inst.. that the Vicar general of the Pro- vince of Canterbury in the recent proceedings at Bow Church on the confirmation of the election of the Bishop of Peterborough omitted the decree to proceed. The statement was correct The forms used at the confirmation of a bishop, and of which the decree to proceed formed part, should certainly not be altered without proper authority, and but for a momentary inadvertence would have been strictly followed in the present case. He was informed that the omission of the decree would not effect the validity of the confirma- tion. Answering Mr, Schwann, Mr. Ritchie said he was not prepared to appoint a Select Commit- tee to inquire into the working of the patent laws. Asked by Mr. T. G. Bowles whether it was true that eight million dollars out of the fifteen and a half million dollars awarded by the Geneva Tribunal on the Alabama claims still remained undistributed in the hands of the United States Government, and whether there was any prospect of that Government offering to repay the amount remaining un- claimed after all claims for compensation had been satisfied, Mr. Curzon read the answer given by Mr. W. H. Smith to a similar quesb- tion in 1891, to the effect that it would be con- trary to the engagements taken by this country in the treaty of Washington of 1871 for Her Majesty's Government to request the return of the money. The House went into Committee of Supply on the Naval and Civil Service Supplementary Estimates. On the vote of £ 5,775 to pay certain excess expenditure on contract vessels under the Naval Defence Act of 1889, Mr. E. Robertson said that, considering the Estimates were framed seven years ago, and amounted to over X-10,000,000, it reflected She highest credit on all concerned that the excess was only 95,77.5. Mr. Macartney added that the total expen- diture in connection with the Naval Defence Act was over X25,000,000, and there had been an actual saving of over £2,000 on the £1,000,000 of shipbuilding in the Government dockyards, and a saving of S20,000 in the estimate of E2,400, 000 for armaments. On a vote of £ 40 for the Mint, Sir M. Hicks Beach stated that the experiment was about to be tried of dulling the colour of farthings before they were issued, so that they might not be confounded with half-sovereigns. On the vote for 912,938 for salaries and ex- penses of the Irish Land Commission, atten- tion was called to the recent appointments to the Commission, and Mr. Flynn moved the re- duction of the vote by £ 5,000. The amendment was negatived by 188 votes to 81. On the supplementary vote for public edu- cation in England and Wales, Mr. Channing, to call attention to the claim of necessitous school boards under section 97 of the Act of 1870, moved a reduction of the vote. Sir J. Garst said that, so far as the Commit- tee were concerned, they had come to the con- clusion that they could not entertain applica- tions for more than the year's arrears recog- nised in the circular of 1881. The amendment was negatived, and a number of other votes were passed. The House adjourned a few minutes after nine o'clock.







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