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conflict of these two adverse spirits, or which would predominute in the end, is what I dare not say: whether the lenient measures would cause American passion to subside, or the severe would increase its fury—all this is in the hand of Providence ; yet now, even now, I should confide in the prevailing virtue and efficacious operation of lenity, though working in darkness, and in chaos, in the midst of all this unnatural and turbid combination : I should hope it might produce order and beauty in the end.

Let us, sir, embrace some system or other before we end this session. Do you mean to tax America, and to draw a productive revenue from thence ? If you do, speak out; name, fix, ascertain this revenue; settle its quantity; detine its objects; provide for its collection; and then fight when you have something to fight for. If you murder, rob! if you kill, take possession! and do not appear in the character of madmen, as well as assassins, violent, vindictive, bloody, and tyrannical, without an object. But may better counsels guide you !

Again, and again, revert to your own principles-seek peace and ensue it-leave America, if she has taxable matter in her, to tax herself. I am not here going into the distinctions of rights, not attempting to mark their boundaries. I do not enter into these metaphysical distinctions; I hate the very sound of them. Leave the Americans as they anciently stood, and these distinctions, born of our unhappy contest, will die along with it. They and we, and their and our an. cestors, have been happy under that system. Let the memory of all actions, in contradiction to that good old mode, on both sides, be extinguished for ever. Be content to bind America by laws of trade; you have always done it. Let this be your reason for binding their trade. Do not burden them by taxes; you were not used to do so from the begin. ning. Let this be your reason for not taxing. These are the arguments of states and kingdoms. Leave the rest to the schools ; for there only they may be discussed with safety. But, if intemperately, unwisely, fatally, you sophisticate and poison the very source of government, by urging subtle deductions, and consequences odious to those you govern, from the unlimited and illimitable nature of supreme sovereignty, you will teach them by these means to call that sovereignty itself in question. When you drive him hard, the boar will surely turn upon the hunters. If that sovereignty and their freedom cannot be reconciled, which will they take? They will cast your sovereignty in your face. Nobody will be argued into slavery. Sir, let the gentlemen on the other side call forth all their ability ; let the best of them get up, and tell me, what one character of liberty the Americans have, and what one brand of slavery they are free from, if they are bound in their property and industry, by all the restraints you can imagine on commerce, and at the same time are made pack-horses of every tax you choose to impose, without the least share in granting them. When they bear the burdens of unlimited monopoly, will you bring them to bear the burdens of unlimited revenue too? The Englishman in America will feel that this is slavery—that it is legal slavery will be no compensation, either to his feelings or his understanding.

A noble lord, who spoke some time ago, is full of the fire of ingenuous youth ; and when he has modelled the ideas of a lively imagination by further experience, he will be an ornament to his country in either House. He has said, that the Americans are our children, and how can they revolt against their parent ? He says, that if they are not free in their present state, England is not free; because Manchester, and other considerable places, are not represented. So then, because some towns in England are not repre

sented, America is to have no representative at all. They are our children; but when children ask for bread, we are not to give a stone. Is it because the natural resistance of things, and the various mutations of time, hinders our government, or any scheme of government, from being any more than a sort of approximation to the right, is it therefore that the colonies are to recede from it infinitely ? When this child of ours wishes to assimilate to its parent, and to reflect with a true filial resemblance the beauteous countenance of British liberty; are we to turn to them the shameful parts of our Constitution ? are we to give them our weakness for their strength? our opprobrium for their glory? and the slough of slavery, which we are not able to work off, to serve them for their freedom?

If this be the case, ask yourselves this question, Will they be content in such a state of slavery? If not, look to the consequences. Reflect how you are to govern a people, who think they ought to be free, and think they are not. Your scheme yields no revenue; it yields nothing but discontent, disorder, disobedience; and such is the state of America, that after wading up to your eyes in blood, you could only end just where you begun; that is, to tax where no revenue is to be found, to-my voice fails me; my inclination indeed carries me no farther-all is confusion beyond it.

Well, sir, I have recovered a little, and before I sit down I must say something to another point with which gentle. men urge us.

What is to become of the Declaratory Act asserting the entireness of British legislative authority, if we abandon the practice of taxation ?

For my part I look upon the rights stated in that Act exactly in the manner in which I viewed them on its very first proposition, and which I have often taken the liberty, with great humility, to lay before you. I look, I say, on the imperial rights of Great Britain, and the privileges which the colonists ought to enjoy under these rights, to be just the most reconcilable things in the world. The Parliament of Great Britain sits at the head of her extensive empire in two capacities : one as the local legislature of this island, providing for all things at home, immediately, and by no other instrument than the executive power. The other, and I think her nobler capacity, is what I call her imperial character; in which, as from the throne of heaven, she superin. tends all the several inferior legislatures, and guides and controls them all, without annihilating any. As all these provincial legislatures are only co-ordinate with each other, they ought all to be subordinate to her; else they can neither preserve mutual peace, nor hope for mutual justice, nor effectually afford mutual assistance. It is necessary to coerce the negligent, to restrain the violent, and to aid the weak and deficient, by the over-ruling plenitude of her power. She is never to intrude into the place of the others, whilst they are equal to the common ends of their institution. But in order to enable Parliament to answer all these ends of provident and beneficent superintendence, her powers must be boundless. The gentlemen who think the powers of Parliament limited, may please themselves to talk of requisitions. But suppose the requisitions are not obeyed ? What! Shall there be no reserved power in the Empire to supply a deficiency which may weaken, divide, and dissipate the whole? We are engaged in war—the Secretary of State calls upon the Colonies to contribute-some would do it, I think most would cheerfully furnish whatever is demanded -one or two, suppose, hang back, and, easing themselves, let the stress of the draft lie on the others-surely it is proper, that some authority might legally say—“ Tax your. selves for the common supply, or Parliament will do it for you.” This backwardness was, as I am told, actually the


friends in this business, to a desire of getting his places. Let him enjoy this happy and original idea. If I deprived him of it, I should take away most of his wit, and all his argument. But I had rather bear the brunt of all his wit, and indeed blows much heavier, than stand answerable to God for embracing a system that tends to the destruction of some of the very best and fairest of his works. But I the map of England, as well as the noble lord, or as any other person; and I know that the way I take is not the road to preferment. My excellent and honourable friend under me on the floor has trod that road with great toil for upwards of twenty years together. He is not yet arrived at the noble lord's destination. However, the tracks of my worthy friend are those I have ever wished to follow; because I know they lead to honour. Long may we tread the same road together, whoever may accompany us, or whoever may laugh at us on our journey! I honestly and solemnly declare, I have in all seasons adhered to the system of 1766, for no other reason, than that I think it laid deep in your truest interests-and that, by limiting the exercise, it fixes, on the firmest foundations, a real, consistent, well-grounded authority in Parliament. Until you come back to that system, there will be no peace for England.

case of Pennsylvania for some short time towards the begin. ning of the last war, owing to some internal dissensions in the colony. But whether the fact were so, or otherwise, the case is equally to be provided for by a competent sovereign power. But then this ought to be no ordinary power; nor ever used in the first instance. This is what I meant, when I have said at various times, that I consider the power of taxing in Parliament as an instrument of empire, and not as a means of supply.

Such, sir, is my idea of the Constitution of the British Empire, as distinguished from the Constitution of Britain ; and on these grounds I think subordination and liberty may be sufficiently reconciled through the whole; whether to serve a refining speculatist, or a factious demagogue, I know not; but enough surely for the case and happiness of man.

Sir, whilst we held this happy course, we drew more from the Colonies than all the impotent violence of despotism ever could extort from them. We did this abundantly in the last war. It has never been once denied-and what reason have we to imagine that the Colonies would not have proceeded in supplying Government as liberally, if you had not stepped in and hindered them from contributing, by interrupting the channel in which their liberality flowed with so strong a course; by attempting to take, instead of being satisfied to receive ? Sir William Temple says, that Holland has loaded itself with ten times the impositions which it revolted from Spain, rather than submit to. He says true. Tyranny is a poor provider. It knows neither how to accumulate, nor how to extract.

I charge therefore to this new and unfortunate system the loss not only of peace, of union, and of commerce, but even of revenue, which its friends are contending for. It is morally certain, that we have lost at least a million of free grants since the peace. I think we have lost a great deal more; and that those who look for a revenue from the provinces, never could have pursued, even in that light, a course more directly repugnant to their purposes.

Now, sir, I trust I have shown, first on that narrow ground which the honourable gentleman measu

sured, that you are likely to lose nothing by complying with the motion except what you have lost already. I have shown afterwards, that in time of peace you flourished in commerce, and, when war required it, had sufficient aid from the Colonies, while you pursued your ancient policy; that you threw everything into confusion when you made the Stamp Act; and that you restored everything to peace and order when you repealed it. I have shown that the revival of the system of taxation has produced the very worst effects; and that the partial repeal has produced, not partial good, but uni. versal evil. Let these considerations, founded on facts, not one of which can be denied, bring us back to our reason by the road of our experience.

I cannot, as I have said, answer for mixed measures : but surely this mixture of lenity would give the whole a better chance of success. When you once regain confidence, the way will be clear before you. Then you may enforce the Act of Navigation when it ought to be enforced. You will yourselves open it where it ought still further to be opened. Proceed in what you do, whatever you do, from policy and not from rancour. Let us act like men, let us act like statesmen. Let us hold some sort of consistent conduct. It is agreed that a revenue is not to be had in America. If we lose the profit, let us get rid of the odium.

On this business of America, I confess I am serious, even to sadness. I have had but one opinion concerning it since I sat, and before I sat, in Parliament. The noble lord will, as usual, probably attribute the part taken by me and my

Nine years before, an American Congress had met to reject the Stamp Act. On the 5th of September, 1774, a second Congress, called the Continental Congress, met at Philadelphia, which again put forth a Declaration of Rights, and also a body of articles called the American Association, signed on the 20th of October, that represented the first stride towards Independence. The Congress prepared also a petition to the King, and an address to the people of Great Britain. George Washington wrote at that time, “More blood will be spilled on this occasion, if the Ministry are determined to push matters to extremity, than history has ever yet furnished instances of in the annals of North America." The Colonies began to arm. Chatham and Burke still laboured for peace, but the King refused to receive the petition of the Continental Congress. On the 19th of April, 1775, there was a conflict at Lexington with British troops, and some hundreds were killed or wounded. On the 17th of June, George Washington accepted his commission as Commander-in-Chief of the army of the United Colonies. So the struggle began that led to the Declaration of Independence, finally adopted on the 4th of July, 1776, which transformed the Colonies into the United States of America. There was war for eight years, hostilities being stayed on the 19th of April, 1783, the anniversary of their first outbreak at Lexington. On the 3rd of September in that year peace was signed with Great Britain, including a full recognition of the Independence of the States, and contirmed by Congress on the 14th of January, 1784.

Burke only entered public life in 1765 at the formation of the Rockingham Ministry, and to the wealth and friendship of Lord Rockingham he was much indebted for his ability in 1768 to pay £23,000 for an estate called Gregories or Butler's Court. It was about a mile from the town of Beaconsfield, and as Burke made little use of the old name of the house, but generally wrote his address Beaconsfield, Beaconsfield became the name

of the house also. When Lord Rockingham died, in eloquence of Burke, caused the dismissal of this July, 1782, he left all Burke's money debts to him Ministry; and in December, 1783, William Pitt the cancelled.

younger, second son of the Earl of Chatham—who had After the dissolution of Parliament, in 1774, Burke been Chancellor of the Exchequer in Lord Shelburne's was returned for Malton, but he resigned Malton when administration at the age of twenty-three-became invited to Bristol. He was returned after a contest, in his twenty-fourth year Prime Minister, and took and following his speech of thanks to the electors, his the two offices of First Lord of the Treasury and colleague, Mr. Cruger, a merchant in the American Chancellor of the Exchequer. He had then the King trade, who had also thanks to return, avoided com- on his side and the majority of the House against parisons with the great orator by only exclaiming - him; but after the dissolution in March, 1786, he « Gentlemen, I say ditto to Mr. Burke !” Our was supported by the country, and ruled English language is the richer by the whole of Mr. Cruger's policy when France was hurrying towards revolution. speech, for it has passed into a proverb.

On the 20th of December, 1784, Burke was a In 1775, on the 22nd of March, Burke laid before mourner at the funeral of his friend Samuel Johnson, the House thirteen resolutions for reconcilement with Sir Joshua Reynolds and other friends. “He with America, and made another famous speech on has made a chasm,” said Burke in his grief,

"which not only nothing can fill up, but which nothing has a tendency to fill up. Johnson is dead. Let us go to the next best : there is nobody. No mau can be said to put the world in mind of Johnson."

In June, 1786, the House of Commons voted, by a majority of thirty-nine, that Warren Hastings was impeachable for his conduct as Governor-General of Bengal to Cheyt Sing, Rajah of Benares. In May, 1787, Warren Hastings was impeached by Burke, on the part of the House of Commons, before the bar of the House of Lords. The trial began in February, 1788, and Burke “stood forth," as he said, “at the command of the Commons of Great Britain, as the accuser of Warren Hastings." His great speech extended over three days, and introduced a trial of which, during its intermittent course through seven years to an acquittal in April, 1795, the interest was wholly broken by the magnitude of events that called all public attention to themselves.


One of the most peaceful of books, Gilbert White's “Natural History of Selborne," was published in the year of the great French Revolution, 1789. Gilbert White, born in the Hampshire village of Selborne in 1720, school-boy at Basingstoke, and afterwards

Fellow of Oriel, settled in his native place, and in EDMUND BURKE. (From the Portrait prefixed to his Essay on the Sublime and Beautiful" (Ed. 1798).

letters to Thomas Pennant and Daines Barrington

detailed some of the results of that quiet, constant American Conciliation. At the next dissolution of observation of nature in which he delighted. He Parliament, in 1780, Burke found that he had died unmarried in 1793. This is one of his letters offended his constituents at Bristol, partly by support to Daines Barrington :of measures favourable to Irish trade. He returned to Malton. In March, 1782, Lord North was forced

THE CONGREGATING TEMPER. to resign, and Lord Rockingham again formed a Ministry, in which he gave Burke a place as Privy

There is a wonderful spirit of sociality in the brute creation, Councillor and Paymaster-General of the Forces. independent of sexual attachment. Of this the congregating Burke then introduced a reform in the expenses of

of gregarious birds in the winter is a remarkable instance.

Many horses, though quiet with company, will not stay one the civil list which included a reduction of his own

minute in a field by themselves: the strongest fences cannot income by £1,300 a year. But Lord Rockingham

restrain them. My neighbour's horse will not only not stay died when this Ministry was not yet four months old, by himself abroad, but he will not bear to be left alone in a and was succeeded by Lord Shelburne on impossible strange stable without discovering the utmost impatience, and conditions as to American policy, that caused Burke

endeavouring to break the rack and manger with his fore feet. to resign. Coalition between Fox and Lord North

He has been known to leap out at a stable-window, through ended the Shelburne administration in February, which dung was thrown, after company; and yet in other 1783; Fox and Lord North then became Secretaries respects is remarkably quiet. Oxen and cows will not fatten of State, and Edmund Burke returned to office as

by themselves; but will neglect the finest pasture that is Paymaster of the Forces. The King's opposition to not recommended by society. It would be needless to add Fox's East India Bills, which were supported by the instances in sheep, which constantly flock together.


But this propensity seems not to be confined to animals of the same species; for we know a doe, still alive, that was brought up from a little fawn with a dairy of cows, with them it goes a-field, and with them it returns to the yard. The dogs of the house take no notice of this deer, being used to her; but, if strange dogs come by, a chase ensues; while the master smiles to see his favourite securely leading her pursuers over hedge, or gate, or stile, till she returns to the cows, who, with fierce lowings and menacing horns, drive the assailants quite out of the pasture.

Even great disparity of kind and size does not always prevent social advances and mutual fellowship. For a very intelligent and observant person has assured me that, in the former part of his life, keeping but one horse, ho happened also on a time to have but one solitary hen. These two incongruous animals spent much of their time together in a lonely orchard, where they saw no creature but each other. By degrees an apparent regard began to take place between these two sequestered individuals. The fowl would approach the quadruped with notes of complacency, rubbing herself gently against his legs : while the horse would look down with satisfaction, and move with the greatest caution and circumspection, lest he should trample on his diminutive companion. Thus by mutual good offices, each seemed to console the vacant hours of the other: so that Milton, when he puts the following sentiment in the mouth of Adam, seems to be somewhat mistaken :--

“Much less can bird with beast, or fish with fowl

So well converse, nor with the ox the ape.” 1 Selborne, Aug. 15, 1775.


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The congregating spirit, strongest in man, caused in many minds an extreme dread of the spread of revolution from France into England. Ideals of society were matter of speculation everywhere, and joined with more or less impatience of the tyranny of custom, But in France the tyranny had been real, and when Government became bankrupt its ruin was inevitable, and the idealists had, so far, a clear field for their labour towards the sudden elevation of the human race. There was no liberty of the subject, where a lettre de cachet could send any man at the King's will, and, through the general corruption, at the will often of a private enemy, untried, or even, so far as he knew, unaccused, to the Bastile. Government mulcted at will those who invested in the public funds. The best works on law, finance, and politics were burnt by the hangman. Atheism was tolerated; Protestants were persecuted. The clergy had let religion almost die out. Men could not call their property their own to use, subject as they were to restrictions on the transport, sale, and preservation of corn; to charges on wine that often went beyond the value of the crop, and caused many of the vineyards to be left uncultivated ; to the taille and vingtième, that took from forty-five to fifty per cent of the nett profit of the soil. When landlord and tenant divided what was left to them, after paying tithe and other dues, they had often only a quarter of the yield between them, and sometimes, in bad years, nothing.

Turgot allowed free circulation (not export) of corn, and remitted taxes on food. But there was a bad

harvest, and he was made answerable for it by the people. He would make the land bear the burden of taxation, abolish the corvée, and throw the cost of roads, &c., on the vingtième. Therefore, the landed proprietors opposed him. In finance he was for no bankruptcy, no loans, and no new taxes ; le relied upon economy with peace. He opposed as needless the dragging of France into the American quarrel. Here were more grounds of offence. In May, 1776, Turgot was succeeded as Controller-General by Clugny, who failed utterly, but died in a few months. Then followed Turgot's opponent, the Swiss banker in Paris, Necker, who first introduced into the Treasury a regular system of accounts, the Compte Rendu, which angered the minister, Maurepas. He met with loans the war with England in the American quarrel. He raised five hundred million livres by sale of annuities, and thus added to the public debt. He excited opposition at Court by his publication of accounts, in Parliament and among populations by his convoking of Provincial Assemblies. In May, 1781, Necker resigned. A judge, Joly de Fleury, succeeded him as Controller-General; he was succeeded in March, 1783, by Ormesson, a younger judge. In two years these gentlemen increased the liabilities by more than four hundred million of livres. Towards the end of 1783, Calonne was appointed. He promised wonders. His policy was to oblige everybody, raise loans, and scatter the money. “When I saw every one stretching his hand,” said a Prince, “I held out my hat, and Calonne filled it.” The King supported Calonne till, after three

years of this easy extravagance, more loans and more taxes were alike impossible. There was avowed a yearly deficit of one hundred and fourteen million, and an arrear of six hundred million of livres. The only remedy was to call an Assembly of Notables, which was convoked for January, 1787.

“ The King has sent in his resignation," said Ségur. The Assembly was opened on the 22nd of February. On the 26th of August, 1788, Necker was Finance Minister again. He restored the Provincial Parliaments, and summoned the States-General, which first met on the 4th of May, 1789. Then arose contest between the Clergy, the Nobility, and the Third Estate as to the manner of voting. If the vote was by orders, there were two to one against the Third Estate; if the vote was by heads, the majority was twenty to one the other way. The Nobles kept aloof, and with them all but nine of the Clergy. The Third Estate, thus left to its own devices, sat as the Commons, and on the 17th of June styled itself the National Assembly. Necker devised a compromise that was over-ruled by the Court Party. The Assembly then swore never to separate until a Constitution was established. On the ground of danger to the King, and with expectation of support to their side from an armed force, the Nobles yielded, and joined the Assembly. Troops then were collected about Paris; Necker was dismissed, and banished on the 11th of July. Next day, Sunday the 12th, in consequence of this, tumults began. On Tuesday the 14th, the Bastile was taken by the people. Though details of the storming of this stronghold of tyranny are mean and base with the passion of uncultivated minds, the Bastile typified the wrong that earnest young minds

1 "Paradise Lost," viii., 395, 396.


had been yearning to see righted, and its fall re- fall of the Bastile in Thomas Campbell's maiden sounded throughout Europe. Now was the time song, “ The Pleasures of Hope," published in the for showing how a people might rise from death spring-time of the last year of the eighteenth century, into life, and a true state be formed that should when the poet's age was twenty-one years and nine realise the noblest aspirations for humanity. Many months. Though fury of war had followed, and wild then felt with Wordsworth’s Solitary, and were sud- passions were let loose, the Hope was still there. As denly roused from that long inquisition into the Campbell wroteframework of society in which

When every form of death, and every woe The intellectual power, through words and things,

Shot from malignant stars to earth below; Went sounding on, a dim and perilous way.

When Murder bared his arm, and rampant War

Yoked the red dragons of her iron car;
For lo! the dread Bastile,

When Peace and Mercy, banished from the plain, With all the chambers in its horrid towers,

Sprung on the viewless winds to Heaven again ; Fell to the ground: by violence overthrown

All, all forsook the friendless guilty mind,
Of indignation; and with shouts that drowned

But Hope, the charmer, lingered still behind.
The crash it made in falling. From the wreck
A golden palace rose, or seemed to rise,
The appointed seat of equitable law
And mild paternal sway
prophetic harps

In every grove were ringing, “ War shall cease,

FROM THE FRENCH RevolutiON TO THE BATTLE Did ye not hear that conquest is abjured ?

OF WATERLOO.—A.D. 1789 TO A.D. 1815. Bring garlands, bring forth choicest flowers to deck The tree of liberty.”—My heart rebounded;

On the 9th of February, 1790, Edmund Burke first My melancholy voice the chorus joined;

uttered in Parliament his sense of alarm at the -" "Be joyful all ye nations; in all lands,

French Revolution. Fox, in a debate on the army Ye that are capable of joy be glad!

estimates, had expressed sympathy with the aspiraHenceforth, whate'er is wanting to yourselves

tions of the Revolutionists, and seen no need for an In others ye shall promptly find; and all,

increase of English military force. Burke dreaded Enriched by mutual and reflected wealth,

the spread through Europe of a revolutionary fever, Shall with one heart honour their common kind." I

and the danger from it in England to religion, government, and the whole fabric of society. “Our danger," he said, “ arises from the model offered by a people whose character knows no medium.” The dread became in him itself a fever, and in the eloquent outpouring of his thoughts and feelings, published in October, 1790, as “Reflections on the Revolution in France,” which reached in a few months an English sale of 30,000, and was widely read on the continent in a French translation by M. Dupont, there were the arguments and pleadings of a wise man with his reason blurred by passion. There were many replies to Burke's pamphlet. Capel Lofft, Mrs. Macaulay Graham, Dr. Joseph Towers, George Rous, M.P., were soon in the field. The most revolutionary answer was Thomas Paine's “Rights of Man ;” the wisest was that of a young Scotsman, afterwards known as Sir James Mackintosh. James Mackintosh was born at Inverness in 1766, and bred at the University of Edinburgh to the profession of medicine, though his interest in the great problem of government, which then occupied many minds, gave him a strong inclination towards law. After graduating as M.D., he went abroad, and soon afterwards, being left free to follow his own bent by the death of Captain Mackintosh, his father, he gave himself to the study of politics and law. That was his position

when, at the age of twenty-four, he replied to Burke's ALLEGORICAL DESIGN. (From Campbell's " Pleasures of Hope."')

“ Reflections on the Revolution in France” with his

“ Vindiciæ Gallicæ." Young poets were full of the great hope. Its It is good that we should be impatient in our noblest aspiration was enshrined ten years after the youth of ills that cry for remedy, of the corruptions

of life, and the slow growth of the best human instiI "Excursion," Book iii,

tutions. With years the desire for reform does not



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