THE EARL OF HARDWICKE AND FREE TRADE. -- A report had gone the round of the different newspapers stating that the Earl of Hardwicke, at his rent audit, held at the Eagle Inn, At Cambridge, on Monday, the 18th ult., had made the following declaration to his tenants, viz.: -- "After alluding to the late incendiary fires, he urged upon the farmers the advantage of adopting an improved system of cultivation, by which they might grow double the quantity of corn. He then observed that there had lately been a great deal of agitation on the subject of the Corn Laws. For himself, he, in common with Sir Robert PEEL and the Duke of Buckingham, was opposed to free trade; but he thought that ultimately free trade principles must prevail. But he conceived the result would not be so disastrous as was anticipated. " In answer to which the noble Earl has forwarded the following letter to the editor of the Cambridge Independent Press, denying the same: --
"Wimpole, Dec. 28, 1843. Sir, -- I by accident have seen a statement in your paper of last week professing to be an accurate report of the sayings and doings of myself and others at a dinner given at the Eagle, on Monday the 18th. This dinner was a private one (no reporters were admitted), at which I had the pleasure of enjoying the society of my tenants and friends. From the words put into my mouth by your journal, I select the following paragraph , as it is likely to mislead: -- ' He then observed, that there had lately been a great deal of agitation on the subject of the Corn Laws; for himself he, in common with Sir Robert PEEL and the Duke of Buckingham, was apposed to free trade, but he thought that ultimately free trade principles must prevail. But he conceived the result would not be as disastrous as was anticipated.' With this exception of those words expressive of my opposition to free trade, I beg to state that no such sentiments as those recorded in your paper were uttered by me. I have the honour, &c., HARDWICKE."