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COURT OF PROBATE AND DIVORCE— SINGULAR CASE. [Before the Judge Ordinary and a Special Jury.] BOUVERIE Y. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL BOUVERIE AND OTHERS INTERVENING

Sir H Canns,, Q C, Mr. Foisyth, Q C , Mr Hoiace Lloyl. and Mi Evciolt appealed foi the petitioner, Mi Hanson, with the Attorney-General, Sir Fifoioy Kelly, Q C , Di. Plulliuioie, Q C, and Mr. H. Mathewt, for the intervene! 1 ) Tins v, as a petition under the Legitimacy Declaration Act. picsented by Mi. John Agustus Shell Bouven<', of Castle Daw son, Londonderiy, and praying for declai ation that he was the lan ful son of Mi. Francis Keneltn Bouverie. The petition was resisted by members of the Bouverie family in Northainptoiishiie. Sir H. Cairns, in opening tlio case, said that for many yean Uieie had been settled at Dclapre Abbey, m Noithamptonshiie, a younger branch of the Bolivia ie family, the liead of which was Loid Radnor. Mi. Ed waul Bouvene, the ownoi of the property in the last centuiy, had four daughteis and foiu sons, the thiid of whom was Mr Francis Keuelm Bouveiie, uho\wuhoiu at the Abbey on the 19th November, 1797 Ho was educated at Oxford, and afteiwauls enteied the army. In 1826 he was witli a detachment of his legimcnt, the 62nd, at a place called Castle Dawsoii, then u town of some hnpoi lance in the north of Ticland In this town tlieie lived a widow, with an only damjhtei, named iSlieil. Her husband was the Bon nf a physician in the neighbourhood, and he had been possessed of a property which had gone ovei under an eulail to his brother, Mr. John Augustus Sheil Lieutenant Bouveiie became acquainted with the Sheila, and tin attachment boob, spiang up between him and the lady They became engaged to each other, and the match was in eveiy way a suitable one. Her age was about 20, and hii about 28. He had at that time no income but his pay, and an allowance of £100 a, year fiom bib father ; whereas Miss Shoil had a settlement of £4,000, which had been left her by her giandfathei. The yciiig couple were mariied by the Rev. Mr. Vesey, at the church of tho palish in which Castle Daw son was situated, namely, Maglprftfelt.

The family of the l.uly, and Mr Bouvouu's biot'ier Jauie3 (who aftei wards becamo colonel of the 17th regiment) weie present at the ceremony. For some months they lived at the house of Mrs. Shell, and then the detachment to which Lieutenant Bouvorio belonged leinoved to Enniskilleu, where they stayed for about a year. Thence they removed for another year to Cavan, where Lieutenant Bouverie obtained his company. He then sold out, and returned to Castle Dawbon. A coirespondence was kept up between Lieutenant Bouverie and his family. The learned counsel read an affection-ately-worded letter from Mrs. Bouverie, his mother, dated November, 1835, wishing joy to her son and her daughter-in-law, on the leturn of the 19th and 20th — "the two most eventful days of their lives," as she teimcd them, they having been her son's biithday and wedding day. In this letter Mis Bouverie sent Capt Bouvorio the love of her daughter Caiohne, who with her eldest biother and her two surviving sisteis now opposed the petition. In 1832 Mis. Bouverie had a still-bom daughter ; and on tho 12fch of July, 1830, she wns again confined. On this occasion slip gave birth to a boy, who lecoived the name of his maternal gieatuncle, Mr. John Augustus Sheil, being at that time the head ol his mother's family. The child was always legaided by his father with the utmost affection, and at his (Captain Bouveiio's) death, on the 19th of September, 1837, he commended it to the care of his family. The jury might now perhaps, wonder how the case came before them at all. At first he (Sir H. Cairns) had felt the same difficulty, for no infoimation could be derived from the pleadings, which seemed to have been formed on the principle of denying everything. They denied the marriage of tho petitioner's father ; and they denied both the biith of the still-born daughter I and the birth of the boy. Theie had been, however, a commission to examine witnesses in lieland, and he f ouud by that meanß what was the real meaning of the suit. Although Capt. Bouverie had lived on teuns of the greatest affection with his wife, thoio was a period when that harmony was for a few days interrupted. She was f unfortunately induced by a gentleman named Bell to accomjmuy him to Liveipool. Captain Bouveiie was ' gieatly distressed at the occiuronce. He piocuied a wauant for his wife's detention, and sent a trusty person after the fugitives. The steps betook were sue, cessful ; and in ten days she leturned to her husband's house. Captain Bouveiio took every step to picvent the scandal spreading ; he forgave her fault, and to the end of his life he again lived on the best terms with hei. He (Sir H. Caiins) laid it down as a recognised i ule of law that whenever a child was born of woman mm ned in lawful wedlock, whenever cohabitation takes place at a time when, according to tho law of uatuie, the child could have been engendered, and wherever the child so born has been recognised by the husband as his child, the law would then presume it to be the legitimate child of tho husband, and nothing could prevent the legitimacy. That was a rule founded upon the law of England, and upon public convenience and morality. If it weie not so, the peace of familiea would bu disturbed, and public decency -would be out laged and scandalised. He would prove by the most incontestable evidence that all these tlnee facts weio ti ue. He v, ould show that the patents of the petitioner were duly man led according to law ; th.it they had lived together at a time when the child must have been engcndeied; and that the fathei had subsequently acknowledged the child as his own, and tieated it alu ays as the heir of the family estates. The father died on the 19th of September, 1537, just fomteen months after the biith of the petitioner. After hU death, his widow was left in somewhat reduced circumstances, since her husband's pay wnsgone, and the allowance of 100/ a-year which had been paid to him by his family was discontinued, and she was conse quently obliged to live upon what was afforded hei by her mothei, and all intercom se with hei husband's family ceased. A few yeira after tho death of Captain BumcrieMrs. Bouverie inairied a second time, to a man named Mann, a peison of inferior social position. 3y Inm she Kid se\ eral cluldren, and tile burden of maintaining them added still further to her straitened cii - cumstiinces. Nevertheless she contrived to allord tho means of sending the petitioner to a good school. Her husband (Mann) then died, and aftei the lapse of somo years she inariiedher third husband, Mr. Hamiuers>ley, who is still alive. It appealed that young Bouveiie, thu petitioner, beiug desuous of suppoiting himself, entcied the Irish constabulary, and subsequently gained' admission into the army, and enteied the 4th dragoons as a private soldier. His good conduct in thib legimcnt and his superior education attiacted the attention of tho ofhceis, and he was made a corporal, and appointed oiderly to Sii Henry Smith. Recently he had contiaoted man lage w ith a lady in the north of lieland, and had been able to pui chase Ins dischaige from the army. Captain Bouveiie m Ins lifetime wasawaie that, subject to pi 101 claims, he and his son after him would have an intent m the fpnnly estates, but unfortunately ho (.'lei* without giving his wife any accmate infoimation mion the subject ol his rights, and it was only of late yoais that the petitioner had found out the piecise nature of the settlement undci i\ Inch he became entitled to the family estates He thfii applied to the solicitoi who managed the affan-, of the family, who l'cluscd him any liifoHiutioii, but subsequently, when it became nn possible to ignore his light, he was answeied that his legitimacy would be disputed. As regaided the settle nu'iit the ti usts woie these Edward Bouveiie, the late ownci of the estates, had fom sons and foui d uigliteis ; the eldest son was General Bom cue, who was bom iv 1789, he inarned m ISIC, and had no family. Tho second Ron was Charles Bouvcuc, who died m 1827, without issue. The third was Francis ICenelm Bouveiie, the father of the petitioner ; and the fourth son was James Bouvene, who died in 1845, without issue, so th it none of the sons had a child except Captain Bouveiie Of the four daughters, tlnee were living, \i/., Catherine, Elizabeth, and Caroline. All of them weie unmairied, and the fourth was dead. The pulics cited as defendants were Geneiftl Bouveiie and the tlnee daughters There was a ie-settlement of the piopeity in 3811, the effect of winch was that, after the life inteicst of Edwaid Bouvene, the estate was limited to Geneial Bouveiie for life, and then to Ins hist and other sons in tail male , then to Chailes Bouvene loi life, and to his first and othei sons iv tul male , then to Fiancis Keneliu Bouveiie for life, with romamdci to his fiist and other sons in tail male ; and the same limitation to the fourth son and his children Aftei which the estate wm limited to the four daughteis as tenants in common in tail, and ultimately the estate was to go, upon failure of the previous limitation I',1 ', to Geneial Bouvene absolutely Evidence in suppoit of the petitioners case having been heard, Sir Fitzioy Kelly, as counsel for Geneial Bouveiie, said, having now heard the whole of the e\ idence on the part of the petitioner, it was his duty to addiess a few words to the court and juiy On the part of his client ho had to state that the only object he had in lemsting the claim of the petitionei was, that tl\e honour of his name and family might be sustained, and that the cause of tmth and justice might be upheld. The head of the fiist line m the family settlement was the Eail of Radnor The general was tho head of the second line ; and though he had no fuithor interest in the property beyond his life inteiest, he was desirous of seeing that the young man who put forwaid this claim, and who, if the claim succeeded, would become entitled, upon the failure of issue on the pait of the goneial, to all the family piopeity, could substantiate his title to legitimacy Although bomo coriespondenoe had been kept up between the two families, there had been no intercourse ; and the general had never even seen the wifu of his brother, Captain Bouveiie, oi his son, the picsent petitioner. The event of his brother's death was notified to him by his widow, but he had nevor oven heal <1 of the existence of her son, except through general tumour. Under these ciicumstances, and particulaily when the fact of the elopement of Mis. Bouveiio became known, he consideied it light that an investigation should take place as to the legality of the claim set up After the evidence which had now beeu given, Geneial Bouvorie felt that, whatever conjectiue might be laised as to the legitimacy, it was evident that hih brother, Captain Bouveiie, had repeatedly acknowledged the petitioner as his son, and it would theiefoio be unjust on his part any longer to resist the evidence, and lie would bo poifectly satisfied with the voidict which, under the diiection of his loidship, the ]my would no doubt give in favour of the petitioner. Dr. Phillimoie, on behalf of the sisters of Geneial Bouverie, expi eased his eoncurionco in what had buen stated by Sir Fit/roy Kelly. The Judge Ordinaiy then said tho course taken by the counsel for the respondents did not sin prise him. It was exactly what he should have expected from the honourable chaiacter of the gentleman whom he lepiehcnted. There could be no doubt that the mle of law was as stated by Sir Hugh Cairns in his opening addiess, and there could be no question but that the evidence had established tho propositions ho had laid down. The jury then found that the petitioner was the legitimate sou of his father, Captain Bouverie.

Nj w Colony or Albeutland. — We find in the Em opean Times of May 26, the following paragraph, relative to a now colony in New Zealand .—"ln. — "In a few days a laige body of emigrants will leave our shores en masse to fcfund a new colony in Now Zealand, which will be named after and in honour of the late illustrious Consort of our Queen. The fiist instalment, numbering nearly 1,000 persons, will include in its ranks members of neaily every class of society and of various religious denominations. Among these are ministers of religion, lawyers, schoolmasters ; a printer, with presses and type for a newspaper ; medical men, shopkeepers, tradesmen, mechanics, farm labourers, domestic servants,, needlewomen, &o.

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Bibliographic details

COURT OF PROBATE AND DIVORCE— SINGULAR CASE. [Before the Judge Ordinary and a Special Jury.] BOUVERIE V. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL BOUVERIE AND OTHERS INTERVENING, Daily Southern Cross, Volume XVIII, Issue 1615, 24 September 1862

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2,225

COURT OF PROBATE AND DIVORCE— SINGULAR CASE. [Before the Judge Ordinary and a Special Jury.] BOUVERIE V. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL BOUVERIE AND OTHERS INTERVENING Daily Southern Cross, Volume XVIII, Issue 1615, 24 September 1862

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