The catastrophe was terrific and instantaneous in its effect. The observatory of Dunsink registered in all eleven shocks, all of the fifth grade of Mercalli’s scale, and there is no record extant of a similar seismic disturbance in our island since the earthquake of 1534, the year of the rebellion of Silken Thomas. The epicentre appears to have been that part of the metropolis which constitutes the Inn’s Quay ward and parish of Saint Michan covering a surface of forty one acres, two roods and one square pole or perch. All the lordly residences in the vicinity of the palace of justice were demolished and that noble edifice itself, in which at the time of the catastrophe important legal debates were in progress, is literally a mass of ruins beneath which it is to be feared all the occupants have been buried alive. From the reports of eyewitnesses it transpires that the seismic waves were accompanied by a violent atmospheric perturbation of cyclonic character. An article of headgear since ascertained to belong to the much respected clerk of the crown and peace Mr George Fottrell and a silk umbrella with gold handle with the engraved initials, crest, coat of arms and house number of the erudite and worshipful chairman of quarter sessions sir Frederick Falkiner, recorder of Dublin, have been discovered by search parties in remote parts of the island respectively, the former on the third basaltic ridge of the giant’s causeway, the latter embedded to the extent of one foot three inches in the sandy beach of Holeopen bay near the old head of Kinsale. Other eyewitnesses depose that they observed an incandescent object of enormous proportions hurtling through the atmosphere at a terrifying velocity in a trajectory directed southwest by west. Messages of condolence and sympathy are being hourly received from all parts of the different continents and the sovereign pontiff has been graciously pleased to decree that a special missa pro defunctis shall be celebrated simultaneously by the ordinaries of each and every cathedral church of all the episcopal dioceses subject to the spiritual authority of the Holy See in suffrage of the souls of those faithful departed who have been so unexpectedly called away from our midst. The work of salvage, removal of débris, human remains etc has been entrusted to Messrs Michael Meade and Son, 159 Great Brunswick street, and Messrs T. and C. Martin, 77, 78, 79 and 80 North Wall, assisted by the men and officers of the Duke of Cornwall’s light infantry under the general supervision of H. R. H., rear admiral, the right honourable sir Hercules Hannibal Habeas Corpus Anderson, K. G., K. P., K. T., P. C., K. C. B., M. P., J. P., M. B., D. S. O., S. O. D., M. F. H., M. R. I. A., B. L., Mus. Doc., P. L. G., F. T. C. D., F. R. U. I., F. R. C. P. I. and F. R. C. S. I.Author and Full Source Text
I did some absurd and ill-advised things. I astonished a respectable solicitor in a grimy little office behind a queer little court with trees near Cornhill, by asking him to give advice to an anonymous client and then putting my anonymous case before him.
“Suppose,” said I, “it was for the plot of a play.” He nodded gravely. My case as I stated it struck me as an unattractive one.
“Application for a Writ of Habeas Corpus,” he considered with eyes that tried to remain severely impartial, “by a Wife’s Lover, who wants to find out where she is…. It’s unusual. You will be requiring the husband to produce her Corpus…. I don’t think–speaking in the same general terms as those in which you put the circumstances, it would be likely to succeed…. No.”
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Then I overcame a profound repugnance and went to a firm of private detectives. It had occurred to me that if I could have Justin, Tarvrille, Guy or Philip traced I might get a clue to Mary’s hiding-place. I remember a queer little office, a blusterous, frock-coated creature with a pock-marked face, iron-grey hair, an eyeglass and a strained tenor voice, who told me twice that he was a gentleman and several times that he would prefer not to do business than to do it in an ungentlemanly manner, and who was quite obviously ready and eager to blackmail either side in any scandal into which spite or weakness admitted his gesticulating fingers.
In the American Navy there is an everlasting suspension of the Habeas Corpus. Upon the bare allegation of misconduct there is no law to restrain the Captain from imprisoning a seaman, and keeping him confined at his pleasure. While I was in the Neversink, the Captain of an American sloop of war, from undoubted motives of personal pique, kept a seaman confined in the brig for upward of a month.Author and Full Source Text
Judges in very formidable ermineAuthor and Full Source Text
Were there, with brows that did not much invite
The accused to think their lordships would determine
His cause by leaning much from might to right:
Bishops, who had not left a single sermon:
Attorneys-general, awful to the sight,
As hinting more (unless our judgments warp us)
Of the ‘Star Chamber’ than of ‘Habeas Corpus.’
He said, ‘The duration of Parliament, whether for seven years or the life of the King, appears to me so immaterial, that I would not give half a crown to turn the scale one way or the other215. The habeas corpus is the single advantage which our government has over that of other countries.’Author and Full Source Text