been made to me by a noble lord opposite, " consideration of the King's German Lewho wished the business to be postponed, on “giou having so frequently distinguished grounds which appeared reasonable, I ac- " themselves against the enemy, and parquiesced in that wish, and the matter has “ticularly upon the occasion of the recent stood over from the early day of the ses. “ victory obtained near Salamanca, his sion which I first fixed upon till the pre- “ royal highness the Prince Regent is sent time. But if the papers, Sir, for “ pleased, in the name, and on the behalf which I shall now move, are refused, I “ of his Majesty, to command, that the shall have reason to regret my ac

“ officers who are now serving with temquiescence, for there are several persons “porary rank in the several regiments of now unavoidably absent who would have " that corps, shall have permanent rank in supported my motion, if brought forward |"" the British army, from the date of their on the day originally fixed; and I shall respective commissions.”-will not bave reason to impuie to the noble lord, call this, Sir, an infraction in the law, for as a motive for delay, merely the wish to happily the law will be found to offer a resist me by a greater majority than he resistance too strong to be borne down by could have presented without it. I trust it; but it certainly is an attempt to vioand believe, however, that the delay was late the law, an attempt to give duration not requested with this view; but for the to the services of officers beyond the limits sufficient reasons then assigned by the assigned to them by an express act of par. noble lord. It will be in the recollection liament--an attempt to put them on an of several members present who belonged equality, in point of permanency, with 1o the former parliament, that in the the officers of the British army. The law course of last session I called the attention limits the duration of the services of the of the House to the infraction of the law German Legion to the period of the war of the land, which was committed by the and twelve months after, but it would seem introduction of foreign officers into native to be the intent of this Order in defiance of regiments; it will be also recollected, the statute to render the existence of that that the consequence of the motion I then corps permanent. It is possible, Sir, that made was the production of returns which, the Order in question may receive a difthough regular in their form, were im- ferent interpretation from that which I perfect in their essence: as they included give it, from the noble lord opposite; only the foreign officers on home service, and, therefore, in order that I may not ocand did not embrace those employed cupy the attention of the House needabroad; the reason assigned for the im- lessly, before I proceed further, I shall beg perfection being, that it was found impos. leave to ask the noble lord whether I have sible to ascertain, within the time specie correctly understood the drift of the Or. fied, the number of officers of the de. der, for without some explanation on that scription in question who were engaged head, I might found argument on what in the latter service. In consequence of would possibly turn out to be a complete this defect, one of my objects to night is, misconception. to obtain the information I then sought to Lord Palmerston begged the noble lord a greater extent than I could then obtain would repeat his construction of the words it, to ascertain the total number of foreign of the Order. officers who have been introduced into our Lord Folkestone proceeded. I am sorry native corps, and also to ascertain the I have not been fortunate enough to make number of such officers employed upon myself understood to the noble lord; but the staff; for the House will bear in mind, to be as plain as I can, my object is to that it has been provided by an express know, whether the Order be intended to statute, that even the officers of the 60th give to the foreign officers foisted into our regiment, who are chiefly foreigners, shall service (I do not use the expression in an not be capable of holding staff employ. invidious sense) all the advantages enjoyed ments. The circumstance, Sir, upon which by British officers ? Are they, by virtue I grounded my notice of motion was, an of it, to be rendered not removable from Order which issued from the Horse the service at a particular time? Are they Guards in August last, and which I deem to be entitled to half-pays it necessary to read to the House, as it ap- Lord Palmerston. They are not meant peared in the Gazette on the 18th of that to bave any privileges or advantages in month. It is as follows :-“ War-Office, the service which may militate against the " August 18, 1812,-MEMORANDUM, In law. It was neither the intention, nor can it be the effect of the Order to give in the name and on behalf of his Mathe officers of the German Legion any jesty, has been pleased to confer perma. privileges or advantages inconsistent with nent rank on the officers of the German the provisions of the Act under which they Legion, who had hitherto only enjoyed were serving

temporary rank. Why, Sir, none of them Lord Folkestone resumed. If that be the had any thing but temporary rank. The case, then the law is altogether nugatory; corps itself is but temporary; and here, it is a mere nothing but the terms in Sir, I shall take the opportunity of stating which it is couched are manifestly incon. a curious fact connected with the present sistent with the explanation given by the subject, and which will show how unreanoble lord. As I before stated, the Order sonable it would be to grant that privi. could not, if it were meant to do so, im- lege to the officers of the German Legion pugn the Act of Settlement, and overstep which I was led to apprehend had been ihat act by which the German Legion was granted to them. It is a rule in the ser. embodied; but unquestionably the man- vice, that even natives who enter it as offi. ner in which it was worded was extremely cers in any but the lowest rank, cannot be repugnant to the spirit of that act; and promoted or have more than temporary for this, since the noble lord has dissipa- rank, and sir Thomas Graham, wlio lately ted my apprehensions of an injury to the received the thanks of this House, having constitution being meditated, I can only entered the service as a colonel, is a meaccount by supposing, that the dictionary morable instance of the truth of this fact. referred to at the War-office affords a Officers of this description receive no pro. greater variety of meanings to ordinary motion, but remain in the situation in which terms than any thesaurus of the language they first enter the service. Now, Sir, in common use. According to the expla- there surely seems to be no good reason nation given by the noble lord, it might why foreigners should enjoy privileges be supposed, that the ministers at the from which his Majesty's subjects are War-office considered the meaning of the themselves debarred; but that would be words' temporary' and permanent to be the case ifthe German officers were to have the same, but until the War-office could pernanent rank. These people came over transform the English_language as they here in great numbers in the year 1804; had transformed the English army, the it was a sufficient evil that they were then true sense would be perfectly obvious to promoted, one made a colonel, and anoevery man who had sense to compre- ther a lieutenant-colonel, with temporary hend any thing. It appears, then, 'Sir, rank, because they were barons and counts, by his statement, that here is an advanand highly connected, but now they are tage and no advantage ; a boon is granted advancing to shoulder British general offito the officers of the German Legion, and cers, who have risen progressively to their the reason assigned for it is, their distin- rank, out of employment, to be invested guished and meritorious conduct when with the command of garrisons and disbrought to act against the enemy.-" In tricts, even in this our native land, and it consideration,” says the Gazette, “ of the would be rather too much to add to it by King's German Legion having so frequent. now giving them an advantage which a ly distinguished themselves against the Briton entering the service of his soveenemy, particularly in the recent battle of reign, under the same circumstances, is Salamanca !"-And this is certainly what rendered incapable of enjoying ; it would would justify a boon of no ordinary mag. be violating, moreover, if not the letter, nitude; yet when this mighty reward certainly the spirit of the Act by which comes to be examined it turns out to be he is so incapacitated. On what prinone of a most unsubstantial nature; one ciple could this be attempted? One of with which, if the officers of the German then had actually the command of a Legion be satisfied, we cannot sufficiently district-how was this innovation deadmire their moderation. The noble lord fended by his Majesty's ministers, in would answer, perhaps, with equal intelli. the teeth of the Act of Settlement and gibility, that this was meant as a reward of that by which they were embodied. for meritorious service, but what boon was But let us contrast with a little attention it to tell a man that something should be the words of the Order with what has been bestowed upon him, which, from a positive said by the noble lord. Does there not enactment, could never be realized? The seem to be a strange inconsistency, reOrder states, that his Royal Highness, sulting from such a contrast; the Order

says, that the German officers shall have , noble lord concluded by stating, that in permanent rank in the British army; the consequence of the explanation which Act of Settlement says, that they shall not had been given of the Order, he would have more than temporary rank, and the change the nature of his motion. The noble lord says, that the Order and the Act motion which he originally intended to are not in the least at variance. Was it have made was merely for papers: but he that at the War-office, not being able to would with the leave of the House submit comprehend their own Order, they were a motion, which should extort from the actually incompetent to understand the War-office such an interpretation of the obvious wording of an act of parliament? Order, such an exposition of their own Did they make any nice distinction between meaning, as to convince the officers of what they might call' temporarily perma- the British army, that they would not nent,' and permanently temporary ?' Let receive that injury and insult, which they otbers solve this difficulty as they may; at present believed was intended, and for my part I cannot, by any effort of would undeceive the German Legion as to mine, comprehend what the nature of this the boon which they supposed had been permanent-temporary rank is, or how these bestowed upon them.-- (His lordship here conflicting terms can be brought into such consulted with the gentlemen about him.] close alliance. And let me observe, Sir, -He then stated that he was not prepared that there is no explanation in the Order to submit the motion, to which he had alof this language. If this permanent rank luded, that evening, and it was suggested, were confined to the German Legion, no by several of his friends, that the best way person could object to it; for, as the Ger- would be, as a ground-work for his ultiman Legion itself is only temporary, it mate object, to confine himself to a part of could only be temporary also.—But the his original motion, which he would do. Order expresses,

permanent rank in the His lordship then moved" That an bumBritish army;" which does not stand on a ble Address be presented to his royal hightemporary basis, as the officers are not ness the Prince Regent, that he will be liable to be dismissed like those of the graciously pleased to order that there be German Legion, and are also legally en. laid before the House copies of all Orders titled to half-pay. Most assuredly an ex. issued from the War-office, respecting the planation is desirable, if it were only to rank of the officers serving in the King's prevent those who are not so well versed German Legion.” in the bearing of adjectives as the scholars Lord Palmerston said, if the laconic exof the War-office, from supposing that the planation he had been permitted to give, Order was either framed by very ignorant had so far altered the view which the persons, or with a view to entrap the un- noble lord had taken of the subject, as to wary Germans (equally ignorant with cause him to vary, in a considerable de. themselves of the English language) and gree, the course he at first intended to make them combat with greater zeal, in pursue, he could not help flattering himspired by gratitude for advantages they self

, that if he had been suffered to answer were never to enjoy. However this may the noble lord's speech, before he made be, Sir, I am happy at having obtained an it, or rather, to have explained the terms assurance from the noble lord that no in- of the Order, he might have spared him fraction of the law is intended ; for, lo my some trouble, though the House would certain knowledge, the apprehension that have been thereby deprived of the advansuch was the intention, has created much tage of listening to his eloquence and his disturbance and uneasiness in the army, humour. This speech was entirely which of course will now subside: and is grounded upon misconception. He apit any wonder that it should have galled prehended the difference between him most British officers' feelings, who after and the noble lord arose from a source having spent the greater part of their lives which often occasioned disagreement-it and wasted their fortunes in the service proceeded from a mere dissimilarity of of their country, find the privilege of lead- opinion as to the meaning of certain words, ing her gallant bands to victory, that pri- which could very readily be rectified. vilege, the hope of enjoying which had Here there was a misconception of the sweetened so many hours of toil and dan word' permanent,'not unnatural with those ger, suddenly wrested from their grasp in who were not acquainted with the techni. favour of persons only just entered the ser- cal terms of the British army, a knowvice, and natives of a foreign land?--The ledge of which was sufficient to settle the

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whole question. The words temporary rary rank. The noble lord, however, and permanent were only used to point seemed to think, that all the officers of out different ranks, contra-distinguished in the German Legion possessed only temone respect, but not in others, which porary rank at ihe time the Order was is. might be applied in the ordinary accepta- sued; but if he looked to the Army List, tion of the words. Permanent rank was he would see that not merely in the Gerthat which was common to every officer man Legion, but in all the foreign corps, in the British army-temporary rank va- though the generals and colonels had only ried from it, and was conferred on those temporary rank, yet all those officers who who raised men, or performed other ser had been promoted as vacancies arose, vices, for the purpose of obtaining high were appointed with the ordinary rank of commissions, without proceeding by the the army--so that it must at once be seen previous steps to promotion, and were that this Order did not apply to all ranks, precluded from precedence and command, but to those who, having perhaps had an except in the particular corps in which opportunity of being more particularly the rank was obtained. It did not, gene useful to the service, were selected as rally, confer promotion in the brevet of worthy of extraordinary approbation. If the army, nor did it, as it ceased with the the noble lord asked, as it was a fair quesreduction of the corps in which it was tion and the drift of his argument went given, entitle the person holding it to that way, whether, these foreign officers half-pay. So far the noble lord might be acting under laws which declared their well-founded in his construction of the services of a temporary nature, it was inOrder; for, if there were no act of parlia- tended that they should possess rank ment, it would be giving them a more longer than the law specified? To this he durable situation than if they possessed must answer, certainly not; and, as he merely temporary rank. But the House said before, the Order must be construed must be aware, as well as those who with reference to the act. What did framed the Order, and those to whom it the act do? It authorised the king to grant was addressed, that it was so construed commissions and letters of service to fowith reference to the act of parliament, by reigners; and did not say, that they which the German Legion was embodied should be different from those held by and retained in the service. The Order British officers. The law authorised com. now in question implied nothing contrary missions to be generally granted-and to the law; neither did it apply to all the whether they were called temporary or officers in the German Legion, but only permanent, they must be guided ultimately to those of superior rank. It was by no by the act of parliament. With this re. means correct to say, that all the officers ference it would be seen that the existence in our foreign corps had only temporary of their commissions would cease with that rank. Such as were appointed in the of the corps to which they belonged. commencement were certainly in that Neither did the Order entitle them to halfpredicament; but as vacancies occurred pay; nor did it interfere in the least dethey were filled up by persons upon whom gree with the interests of the British of. permanent rank was conferred, and who ficers in our service. The act under were placed in every respect on a footing which the German Legion was organised with their brother officers.-Many of our directed that when German officers should foreign corps were in fact brought into serve along with British, that officer should service, complete established corps. The take the precedency whose commission Germans however were not so, but the was of the oldest date, but in no degree officers and privates were for the most did it tend to violate the law, because it part individuals who had been in the Ha. gave German officers no one advantage noverian service, and it was deemed neces. in rank, promotion, or duration of service, sary that they should be united—it was Then it might be asked, what would be considered, however, equally necessary the effect of those commissions on other that the officers should hold the same re- points, and what benefit would the gimental rank in the new corps, which German officers derive from this Order? they held previously when in the German This advantage only did they derive from service. But the analogy of our service the Order, that, at the period when their had been preserved: the first officers had commissions should cease, their rank only temporary rank: but the whole of having been the common permanent rank the corps were not serving with tempo- of the army, their names would still be printed in the Army List, as an honourable reward was not, and could not be deemed remembrance of the services they had a trifle; it was in truth most gratifying to done the country, and they would con. their feelings and welcome to their amtinue to bear the rank to which their bition. Those who were acquainted from merits so unquestionably entitled them. previous unhappy experience with the Now, if this permanent rank did not vio- sentiments of the noble lord on the sublate the law or the constitution, by giving ject of the employment of foreigners for to those officers a greater hold on the ser- our own and the defence of our allies, vice than they before possessed, could the would be aware that to carry this motion noble lord contend that it interfered with was not so much his object, as at the comthe rights of British officers ? As to the mencement of a new parliament to make complaint, that they sometimes command a sort of declaration that his opinions were ed native officers, it should be recollected unaltered, and that he intended to conthat the act under which they served au- tinue the same road he had pursued during thorised the formation of articles of war the last parliament. If he thought that for their government; and one of these their employment was improper, all he gave to the senior officer of a detachment, wished was, that those who entertained a the command of the whole, for the be different sentiment should be admitted 10 nefit of the service, and as was usual bave as much love for, and as correct views in the army in general. Those who of the constitution as their opponents.—He were acquainted with the practice of the knew that many had an objection 10 emarmy were perfectly aware that the of- ploying foreign soldiers on constitutional ficers of the German Legion had uniformly principles. He thought, however, that taken precedence according to the date of those who considered the circumstances of their commission, just as if they held the times, as well as the constitution of permanent rank. From all this it ap- the country, would not object to their peared, that the Order did not inter- being employed at present. If any man fere with the regular army, or with the would look at the map of Europe, and see act of parliament. The officers of the what a portion of its population the enemy Legion had always been put in brevet as bad forced into hostility against this permanent, so that, in point of fact, the country, if he were also to consider the Order, so far from enabling them to limited population of these two islands, shoulder out British officers, gave them and the extensive colonies we had to deno advantage with regard to prece- fend, and the navy we had to support, it dence, or promotion, which they did appeared to bim hardly possible that such not possess when they first embarked 'a man could now adhere to the idea of not in the service. But, it would be said, if employing foreigners in our service. this Order did not give any advantage, for Looking at the present state of the world, what purpose was it issued ? --and on this and viewing the countless hosts that were point the noble lord was very satirical, arrayed against Great Britain, single observing with great severity on the igno-handed, it seemed to him the height of rance of those connected with the War absurdity to make such an objection. Beoffice, whom he seemed to think unac- cause our having swept the seas of our quainted with their own language. But enemies, and because our small but galhe would tell the noble lord, that the lant armies had hitherto stood undaunted Order which was issued by the Com- and unbroken before the overwhelming mander-in-chief, was intended, and was forces of France and all her dependent so understood by the officers themselves, states, was it to be urged that we were, to pay a well-merited compliment to a unaided and unsupported, capable of sus. very deserving body of men, who had sig- taining for ever so unequal a contest? nalized themselves not only in one action That our foreign corps, and particularly but throughout the whole campaign. I the German Legion, merited all the rea Some hon. gentlemen might think it a wards that could be bestowed upon them, boon not worth having, but he was sure no man, let him belong 10 what party he that those who best knew their pure and might, would deny. Surely it would not bonourable feelings, were convinced that be said, that the individuals now alluded it was most gratifying to them. What to were objects of censure or distrust. He they acquired was honour, the end, and I would beg the House to consider, who aim of a soldier ; that for which he fought they were? They were not adventurers and died. To the German Legion such a intruding themselves into the service of (VOL. XXIV.)


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