Page:History of England (Macaulay) Vol 4.djvu/433

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they now were of chiefs, of arms and of organization, nothing was to be apprehended beyond occasional robberies and murders. But the war cry of the Irishry had scarcely died away when the first faint murmurs of the Englishry began to be heard. Coningsby was during some months at the head of the administration. He soon made himself in the highest degree odious to the dominant caste. He was an unprincipled man; he was insatiable of riches; and he was in a situation in which riches were easily to be obtained by an unprincipled man. Immense sums of money, immense quantities of military stores had been sent over from England. Immense confiscations were taking place in Ireland. The rapacious governor had daily opportunities of embezzling and extorting; and of those opportunities he availed himself without scruple or shame. This however was not, in the estimation of the colonists, his greatest offence. They might have pardoned his covetousness; but they could not pardon the clemency which he showed to their vanquished and enslaved enemies. His clemency indeed amounted merely to this, that he loved money more than he hated Papists, and that he was not unwilling to sell for a high price a scanty measure of justice to some of the oppressed class. Unhappily, to the ruling minority, sore from recent conflict and drunk with recent victory, the subjugated majority was as a drove of cattle, or rather as a pack of wolves. Man acknowledges in the inferior animals no rights inconsistent with his own convenience; and as man deals with the inferior animals the Cromwellian thought himself at liberty to deal with the Roman Catholic. Coningsby therefore drew on himself a greater storm of obloquy by his few good acts than by his many bad acts. The clamour against him was so violent that he was removed; and Sidney went over, with the full power and dignity of Lord Lieutenant, to hold a Parliament at Dublin.[401]