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PRINTED FOR BALDWIN, CRADOCK, AND JOY;
P R E F A C E.
ONE of the most remarkable occurrences in the domestic history of the year 1817 was the double renewal of the bill for the suspension of the Habeas Corpus Act, moved first in the two Houses near the close of February, and afterwards, upon a fresh alarm, in the month of June. The majorities by which these measures were carried sufficiently indicated the affright which was spread through the most opulent, and the most timorous, class of the nation ; at the same time the number was not inconsiderable of those who held firmly to the maintenance of laws which were regarded as the palladium of English liberty. The termination of these disputes threw a degree of discredit upon the ministry, who, by the employment of spies, seemed to aggravate the discontents which were already too prevalent among the inferior ranks of the people.
The preceding year had afforded a happy augury to the nation, in the union of the daughter of the Prince Regent to Prince Leopold of Saxe Cobourg, which promised a lasting source of domestic felicity. The connexion was blest with a hope of progeny, which was brought to maturity early in November ; but, to the unspeakable disappointment of the general expec. tation, the Princess sunk under the effort, and after having been the mother of a dead child, became herself the victim. The public feeling was scarcely ever