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LONDON LETTER. .

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LONDON LETTER. l SPECIALI. Y WIRED. j [BY OUR GAXLKRY CORRESPONDENT.] LOXDOX, Tuesday Night. Mr Chamberlain's visit to Ipswich to- morrow, v/iiau the gathering of the National Liberal Federation will be held amongst the constituents of a personal friend and a poli- tical associate of tho President of the Board of Trade, ig looked forward to with much interest. There can be little doubt that the general impression of Mr Cham- berlain. that, when he speak?, he says something worth listening to, rests upon a very substantial basis. Bir- mingham is proud of the daring duckling immortalised in a cartoon in Punch not very long ago, nor is the pride of the hardware capital in its distinauished citizen at all unreasonable. Witlun four years of his entering the I- ou --o of Commons he was a Cabinet Minister, an experience which falls to few represtntatives of the people, and his public utterances are now considered of so much importance that wherever he goes he is followed by an army of reporters. Sir Charles Duke's action at the meeting of the Chelsea Liberal Council last night has been much talked of by politicians to-day. Two lithographed resolutions had been pre- pared for acceptance by the council, but the motion in favour of the second ballot was not on the agenda paper. It was brought forward in the jalmpe of all amendment by Mr R. B. BretL, M. P. for Falmouth, private secretary to the Marquis of xiartmgtoii, and eldest son of the Master of the Rolls, himself formerly a Conservative member for Helstou in Cornwall, and seconded by Sir Charles Diike. Tho reports of the proceedings in the London papers are exceedingly brief, being in fact summarily dismissed in a paragraph. I believe the truth is that the President o" the Local Government Beard cares very little for public speaking or to how small an extent he is reported. Since the sentence of four months' im- prisonmeut for libel was passed upon Mr Edmund Yates in April last, rite question has often been asked, what has become of it 1 It was known that Mr Yates was spending a considerable part of his time in Paris, and that he had not yet made the acquaintance of the Governor of Holloway Prison. The inquiry had been answered to-day in the arguments before the Court of Appeal, presided over by the Master of the Rolls, who to those present certainly seemed to lean decidedly against the appellant. For all that, now that thvo.>- quarters of a year have elapsed since the sentence was passed by Lord Coleridge and two of his colleagues in the Queen's Beach, the punishment is looked upon as greatly exceeding the offence, especially when it is remembered that the prison regulations are now very much more severe than they were only a few years ago. The power of the Prcs has not often been so clearly exemplified in affecting the de- cision of a public body as in the case of the Commissioners of Sewers to-day. A pro- posal lias to be brought before them for con- structing sub-way^ for foot passengeriC, so as to relieve the busy streets in the immediate neighbourhood of the Mansion House, the Royal Exchange, and the Bank of England. No one who has witnessed the nervousness of timid pedastrians, anxious in the middle of the day and early afternoon to g>>l from the Mansion House to the Bank, running the gauntlet of the tragic uf King William-street, Lombard-street, Comhill, and Threaaneedld-street, will doubt the value of the proposed, subways. The London papers strongly supported the suggestion, and b^v/iug t) the general expression of public opinion, the commissioners have Unanmiouoiy assented to the scheme. A member of the family of Gore-Langton has so long and SI. often represented one of the divisions of Somerset that the farmers of that Conservative county will receive the intelligence of Mr William Stephen Gore- Langfon's intended resignation with some surprise. The -lion. gentleman, who is not yet 40, has issued an address announcing that he shall resign his seat at the beginning of the session. His father sat for West L) Sojt^;r;ei from 1851 to 1856, and from 1863 to 1866, and the present member has sat for iilid Somerset seven years. The consti- tuency is ir e which the Liberals will not now contest, for although the Franchise Act is unon the statute book, it cannot come into operation for Rnothcr twelve months. I The earlier reception given to Lord Rose- bory's circular to the peers has not been varied by subsequent developments. For ivasons ciiiefiy of a personal character, the peers have declined to accept the leaderslup "f the young earl in this matter. If Lord Salisbury, Earl Granville, or some other of the elders of the House had undertaken the business, it would Ihave been different. I;ut whe. Lord Roseoery offers himself to lake the lead, he is regarded by noble lords as David was looked upon by his big brothers when he proposed to go forth and give battle to the giant. But though Lord Rosebery has been snubbed in his attempt to form a mixed 11 party on the question, he is not the kind of man to abandon an undertaking because at the outset he has suffered repulse. His idea was that a majority of the peers were, like himself, secretly convinced of the in- nvitableness, if not of the desirability or the necessity, of reforming of House of Lords. When he had brought forward the subject in the form of a resolution, Lord Salisbury and Earl Granville, for once united, had chaffed him out of court. Having tried both ways, and most ucterly failed in the private application, Lord Rosebery will next session return to the subject, conscious in the strength that a man leading a forlorn hope in either House of Parliament possesses when he has behind him the support of public opi- nion. In connection with this question, I have been looking over the roll of the present House of Peers, and am surprised to find how modern is the personnel of this "ancient institution." There are, excluding royal princes, bishops, judges, and represen- tative peers, 485 peers of the realm heritors li that "old nobility" for the preservation of which Lord John Manners pleaded with pathetic energy. How many of these, does the average reader suppose, have held a peerage in their family for more than 85 years'! Exactly the odd 185. Not less than 300 of the peerages now existent have been created witnin the present century. Within the last ten years Mr Disraeli and Mr Glad- stone have between them made 70 peers. Some of these, notably Lord Brabourne, have been loudest in their indignant protest against laying rough hands upon an institu- tion which had its germs of lue in the time of William the Conqueror, and which struggled at Runnymede with King John.

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