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reformers; but not without the dangerous effect of re-
kindling throughout the country, the flame of political

Some efforts were made to disburthen the country of a

population felt to be redundant, in the present depressed

state of commerce and manufactures, by affording encou-

ragement to emigration. In the first session of the year a

parliamentary grant of 50,0001. was voted, for the purpose

of establishing settlers on the eastern border of the colony

of the Cape of Good Hope. Means were also taken to

invite public attention to the advantages promised to free

settlers on the shores of the great Austrasian continent, and

a second exploratory journey undertaken by direction of the

governor of New South Wales, has discovered a large tract

of fertile and uninhabited land ready to become an addi-

tional province of the future British empire in the southern


The poor-laws, with the influence exerted by them on the con-
dition moral and political, of the lower classes ;—the state of
prisons andof prison discipline; and the state and actual ope-
ration of that portion of the criminal laws under which capital
punishment is denounced ;-all subjects of high importance,
and bearing upon each other by several points ;-have under-
gone the laborious and able investigation of parliamentary
committees; and copious extracts from their reports and
minutes of evidence will be found in this volume. These
documents, which are not regularly accessible to the public
at large, will, it is hoped, be regarded as a valuable addition
to the contents of an Annual Register; at a period, espe-
cially, when the sciences of legislation and of political eco-
nomy are cultivated with an ardor absolutely unprecedented,
and when the active benevolence so long characteristic of
the English nation, is daily becoming, under their guidance,
more reflecting, and more enlightened.

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