Pigs' meat; or, lessons for the swinish multitude: Published in weekly penny numbers, collected by the poor man's advocate (an old veteran in the cause of freedom) in the course of his reading for more than twenty years. Intended to promote among the labouring part of mankind proper ideas of their situation, of their importance, and of their rights. And to convince them that their forlorn condition has not been entirely overlooked and forgotten, nor their just cause unpleaded, neither by their maker not by the best and most enlightened of men in all ages. [pt.1]
Spence, Thomas, 1750-1814.
Page  2
Behold I conspired against my master, and slew him: but who slw all these?
2 Kings x. 9.

INTRODUCTION. A judicious Compiler is better than a bad Author.

THE BEE AND THE SPIDER. FROM DODSLEY'S FABLES.

THE Bee and the Spider once entered into a warm de∣bate which was the better artist. The Spider urg∣ed her skill in the mathematics, and asserted, that no one was half so well acquainted as herself with the construc∣tion of lines, angles, squares and circles: that the web she daily wove was a specimen of art inimitable by any other creature in the universe: and, besides, that her works were derived from herself alone, the product of her own bowels; whereas the boasted honey of the Bee was stolen from every herb and flower of the field; nay, that he had obligations even to the meanest weeds. To this the Bee replied, that she was in hopes the art of extracting honey from the meanest weeds would at least have been allowed her as an excellence; and, that, as to her stealing sweets from the herbs, and flowers of the field, her skill was therein so conspicuous, that no flower ever suffered the least diminution of its fragrance from so delicate an ope∣ration. Then, as to the Spider's vaunted knowledge in the construction of lines and angles, she believed she might safely rest the merits of her cause on the regularity alone of her combs; but since she could add this, the sweet∣ness and excellence of her honey, and the various purposes to which her wax was employed, she had nothing to fear from the comparison of her skill with that of the weaver of a flimsy cobweb; for the value of every art, she observ∣ed, is chiefly to be estimated by its use.

Page  3

FROM CATO's LETTERS. ON FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

SIR,

WITHOUT freedom of thought, there can be no such thing as wisdom; and no such thing as public liberty, without freedom of speech: which is the right of every man, as far as by it he does not hurt and controul the right of another; and this is the only check which it ought to suffer, the only bounds which it ought to know.

This sacred privilege is so essential to free go∣vernment, that the security of property and the freedom of speech always go together; and in those wretched countries where a man cannot call his tongue his own, he can scarce call any thing else his own. Whoever would overthow the liberty of the nation, must begin by subduing the liberty of speech; a thing terrible to public traitors.

This secret was so well known to the court of King Charles the first, that his wicked ministry procured a proclamation to forbid the people to talk of parliaments, which those traitors had laid aside. To assert the undoubted right of the subject, and defend his majesty's legal prerogative, was called disaffection, and punished as sedition. Nay, people were forbid to talk of religion in their fa∣milies: for the priests too had combined to cook up tyranny, and suppress truth and the law. While the late King James, when Duke of York, went avowedly to mass, men were fined, imprisoned, and undone, for saying he was a papist: and that King Charles the second might live more securely a pa∣pist, there was an act of parliament made, declar∣ing it treason to say that he was one.

That men ought to speak well of their governors, is true, while their governors deserve to be well spoken of; but to do public mischief without hear∣ing of it, is only the prerogative and felicity of Page  4tyranny; a free people will be shewing they are o, by their freedom of speech.

The administration of government is nothing else but the attendance of the trustees of the peo∣ple, upon the interest and affairs of the people. And as it is the part and business of the people, for whose sake alone all public matters are, or ought to be transacted, to see whether they be well or ill transacted; so it is the interest, and ought to be the ambition, of all honest magistrates, to have their deeds openly examined, and publicly scanned: only the wicked governors of men dread what is said of them.

Freedom of speech is the great bulwark of liber∣ty; they prosper and die together: and it is the terror of traitors and oppressors, and a barrier against them. It produces excellent writers, and encourages men of fine genius. Tacitus tells us, that the Roman commonwealth bred great and nu∣merous authors, who wrote with equal boldness and eloquence: but when it was enslaved, those great wits were no more. Tyranny had usurped the place of equality, which is the soul of liberty, and destroyed public courage. The minds of men, terrified by unjust power, degenerated into all the vileness and methods of servitude: abject, syco∣phancy and blind submission grew the only means of preferment, and indeed of safety; men durst not open their mouths but to flatter.

Pliny the younger observes, that this dread of tyranny had such effect, that the senate, the great Roman senate, became at last stupid and dumb. Hence, says he, our spirit and genius are stupified, broken and sunk for ever. And in one of his epistles, speaking of the works of his uncle, he makes an apology for eight of them, as not written with the same vigour which was to be found in the rest; for that these eight were written in the reign of Nero, when the spirit of writing was cramped with fear.

Page  5I have long thought that the world are very much mistaken in their idea and distinction of li∣bels. It has been hitherto generally understood that there are no other libels but those against magis∣trates, and those against private men: now to me there seems to be a third sort of libels, full as de∣structive as any of the former can possibly be, I mean libels against the people. It was otherwise at Athens and Rome; where, though, particular men, and even great men, were often treated with much freedom and severity, when they deserved it; yet the people, the body of the people, were spoken of with the utmost regard and reverence; the sacred privileges of the people, the inviolable majesty of the people, and the unappealable judg∣ment of the people, were phrases common in those wise, great, and free cities. Other modes of speech are since grown fashionable, and popular madness is now almost proverbial; but this madness of theirs, whenever it happens, is derived from external causes. Oppression, they say, will make a wise man mad; and delusion has not less force; but where there are neither oppression nor imposters, the judgment of the people in the business of pro∣perty, the preservation of which is the principal business of government, does rarely err. Perhaps they are destitute of grimace, mystery, reserve, and other accomplishments of courtiers; but as these are only masks to conceal the absence of honesty and sense, the people, who possess as they do th substance, have reason to despise such insipid and contemptible shadows.

Machiavel, in the chapter where he proves that a multitude is wiser and more constant than a prince, complains, that the credid which the peo∣ple should be in declines daily: For, says he, every man has liberty to speak what he pleases against them, but against a prince no man can talk without a thousand apprehensions and dangers. I have in∣deed Page  6often wondered, that the inveighing against the interest of the people, and calling their liber∣ties in question, as has been, and is commonly done amongst us by old knaves and young fools, has never been made an express crime.

I must own, I know not what treason is, if sap∣ping and betraying the liberties of a people be not treason, in the eternal and original nature of things. Let it be remembered for whose sake government is, or could be appointed; then let it be consider∣ed who are more to be regarded, the governors, or the governed; they indeed owe one another mu∣tual duties; but if there be any transgressions com∣mitted, the side that is most obliged, ought doubt∣less to bear the most: and yet it is so far otherwise, that almost all over the earth, the people, for one injury that they do their governors, receive ten thousand from them: any, in some countries, it is made death and damnation, not to bear all the oppressions and cruelties which men, made wanton by power, inflict upon those that gave it them.

The truth is; If the people are suffered to keep their own, it is the most tht they desire: but even that is a happiness which in few places falls to their lot; they are frequently robbed by those whom they pay to protect them. I know that it is a ge∣neral charge against the people. that they are tur∣bulent, restless, fickle, and unruly; than which there can be nothing more untrue, for they are only so, where they are made so. As to their being fickle, it is so false, that, on the contrary, they have almost ever a strong bent to received customs, and as strong a partiality to names and families that they have been used to: and as to their being turbulent, it is as false; since there is scarce and ex∣ample in an hundred years of any people's giving governors any uneasiness, till their governors had made them uneasy: nay, for the most part, they bear many evils without returning one, and seldom throw off their burdens so long as they can stand under them.

Page  7

From Swift's Sermon on False Witness.

A Second way by which a man becometh a false witness, is, when he mixeth falsehood and truth together, or concealeth some circumstances, which, if they were told, would destroy the false∣hoods he uttered. So the two false witnesses who accused our Saviour before the chief priests, by a very little perverting his words, would have made him guilty of a capital crime; for so it was among the Jews to prophecy any evil against the temple. This fellow said, I am able to destroy the Temple of God, and to rebuild it again in three days; whereas the words, as our Saviour spoke them, were to ano∣ther end, and differently expressed; for when the Jews asked him to shew them a sign, he said, De∣stroy this Temple, and in three days I will raise it up. In such cases as these, an innocent man is half confounded, and looketh as if he were guilty, since he neither can deny his words, nor perhaps readily strip them from the malicious additions of a false witness.

Thirdly, A man is a false witness, when, in accusing his neighbour, he endeavoureth to aggra∣vate, by his gestures and tone of his voice, or when he chargeth a man with words, which were only repeated o quoted from somebody else. As if any one should tell me that he heard another speak certain dangerous and seditious speeches, and I should immediately accuse him for speeking them himself; and so drop the only circumstance that made him innocent. This was the case of St. Stephen. The false witnesses said, This man ceasth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place and the law. Whereas St. Stephen said no such words, but only repeated some pro∣phesies of Jeremiah or Malachi. which threatened Jerusalem with destruction if it did not repent: Page  8However, by the fury of the people, this innocent holy person was stoned to death, for words he ne∣ver spoke.

Fourthly, The blackest kind of false witnesses, are those who do the offices of the devil, by tempting their brethren in order to betray them, I cannot call to mind any instances of this kind mentioned in holy scripture; but I am afraid this vile practice hath been too much followed in the world. When a man's temper hath been so soured by his misfortunes and hard usage, that perhaps he hath reason enough to complain; then one of these seducers, under the pretence of friendship, will seem to lament his case, urge the hardships he hath suffered, and endeavour to raise his passions, until he hath said something that a malicious in∣former can pervert or aggravate against him in a court of justice.

Fifthly, Whoever beareth witness against his neighbour, out of a principle of malice and revenge, from any old grudge, or hatred to his person; such a man is a false witness in the sight of God, al∣though what he says be true; because the motive or cause is evil, not to serve his prince or country, but to gratify his own resentments. And there∣fore, although a man thus accused, may be very justly punished by the law, yet this doth by no means acquit the accuser, who, instead of regard∣ing the public service, intended only to glut his private rage and spite.

Sixthly, I number among false witnesses, all those who make a trade of being informers, in hope of favour and reward; and to this end employ their time, either by listening in public places, to catch up an accidental word, or in corrupting men's servants to discover any unwary expression of their master; or thrusting themselves into com∣pany, and then using the most indecent scurrilous language; fastening a thousand falsehoods and Page  9scandals upon a whole party, on purpose to provoke such an answer as they may turn to an accusation: And truly this ungodly race is said to be grown so numerous, that men of different parties can hardly converse together with any security. Even the pulpit hath not been free from the misrepresenta∣tions of these informers; of whom the clergy have not wanted occasions to complain with holy David: They daily mistake my words, all they imagine is to do me evil. Nor is it any wonder at all, that this trade of informing should be now in a flourishing condition. since our case is manifestly thus; we are divided into two parties, with very little cha∣rity or temper toward each other: the prevailing side may talk of past things as they please with security, and generally do it in the most provok∣ing words they can invent: while those who are down, are sometimes tempted to speak in favour of a lost cause, and therefore without great cau∣tion, must needs be often caught tripping, and thereby furnish plenty of materials for witnesses and informers.

Lastly, Those may well be reckoned among false witnesses against their neighbour, who bring him into trouble and punishment by such accusations as are of no consequence at all to the public, nor can be of any other use but to create vexation. Such witnesses are those who cannot hear an idle intemperate expression, but they must immediate∣ly run to the magistrate to inform; or perhaps wrangling in their cups over night, when they were not able to speak or apprehend three words of common sense, will pretend to remember every thing in the morning, and think themselves very properly qualified to be accusers of their brethren.

It might perhaps be thought proper to have added something by way of advice to those who are unhappily engaged in this abominabe trade and Page  10sin of bearing false witness; but I am far from be∣lieving or supposing any of that destructive tribe are now my hearers. I look upon them as a sort of people that seldom frequent these holy places, where they can hardly pick up any materials to serve their turn, unless they think it worth their while to misrepresent or pervert the words of the preacher: and whoever is that way disposed, I doubt cannot be in a very good condition to edify and reform himself by what he heareth. God in his mercy preserve us all from the guilt of this grievous sin, forbidden in my text and from the snares of those who are guilty of it!

I shall conclude with one or two precepts given by Moses from God to the children of Israel, in the xxiii. of Exod. 1.2.

Thou shalt not raise a false report: put not thine hand with the wicked, to be an unrighteous witness.

Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil, neither shalt thou speak in a cause to decline after many, to wrest judgment.

Now to God the father, &c.

SOME CAUSES OF ENGLISH MISERY.

NOTWITHSTANDING the improvements, the capital is become an overgrown monster; which, like a dropsical head, will in time leave the body and extremities without nourishment and sup∣port, The absurdity will appear in it full force; when we consider, that one sixth part of the natives of this whole extensive kingdom, is crowded with∣in the bills of mortality.

What wonder that our villages are depopulated and our farms in want of day labours: The aboli∣tion of small farms, is but one cause of the decrease Page  11of population. Indeed, the incredible increase of horses and black cattle, to answer the purposes of luxury, requires a prodegious quantity of hay and grass, which are raised and managed without much labour; but a number of hands will always be want∣ed for the different branches of agriculter, whe∣ther the farms be large or small. The tide of lux∣ury has swept all the inhabitants from the open country—the poorest squire, as well as the richest peer, must have his house in town, and make a figure with an extraordinary number of domestics. The plough boys', cow herds, and lower kinds, are debauched and seduced by the appearance and discourse of those coxcombs in livery, when they make their summer excurtions, they desert their dirt and drudgery, and swarm up to London, in hopes of getting into service, where they can live luxuriously, and wear fine cloaths, without being obliged to work; for idleness is natural to man.— Great numbers of those being disappointed in their expectation, become thieves and sharpers.

ON THE EXECUTION OF LOUIS CAPAT. From a Pamphlet entitled. "Peace and Union."

LOUIS CAPET has afforded an excellent to∣pick for parliamentary declamation. Let us strip the subject of figures of rhetorick, and no Englishman need be alarmed at the execution of and individual at Paris. Louis Capet was once King of France, and entitled to the honours of that exalted station. The supreme power of the nation declared that France should be a Republic; from that moment Louis Capet lost his titles. He was accused of enormous crimes, confined as a state prisoner, tried by the National Convention, found guilty, condemned, and executed. What Page  12is there wonderful in all this? Our revolution, the boast of the present days, pursued the same con∣duct as nearly as possible. Our Convention de∣clared, that James the Second should be no longer king; it did not chuse to abolish kingship, but dignified William the Third with regal honours. James was stripped of his titles, and became plain James Stuart, and the rebublican William became a sovereign. James was not tried, condemned, and executed, because he saved his life by flight: but the laws against himself and his son, and the proceedings in the years fifteen and forty-five, must convince the most superficial reasoner, that the maxims of the English and French nations, with respect to the dethroning of kings, are ex∣actly the same. But some one will say, Louis Capet was unjustly condemned. Ninety-nine out of a hundred, who make this objection, have not given themselves the trouble of examining the records of the trial; and why should I give greater credit to the remaining objector than to the ver∣dict of the court? If Louis Capet did when king encourage the invasion of his country, however, we may be inclined to pity the unfortunate man, for the error of his conduct, we have no right to proclaim him innocent in pomt of law. It is, in short, no business of ours; and if all the crowned heads in the continent are taken off, it is no busi∣ness of ours. We should be unworthy of the constitution settled at the revolution, and enemies to the Brunswick families now seated on our throne, if we denied to any nation the right of settling, as it pleased, its own internal government. These sentiments do not prevent us from com∣miserating the situation of the French refugees. They are entitled to our compassion; and it is but right that we should attend to their distresses, since foreign countries have been put to the ex∣pence of maintaining those refugees from our own Page  13island, who, for their attachment to an ancient fa∣mily, were, by the rigour of the two foreign reigns, subjected to all the penalties exacted from recusant by the present government in France.

ON POLITICAL SUPERSTITION.

[From Barlow's Advice to the Privileged Orders.]

THERE is another consideration from which we may argue the total extinction of wars, as a necessary consequence of establishing governments on the representative wisdom of the people. We are all sensible that superstition is a blemish of hu∣man nature, by no means confined to subjects con∣nected with religion. Political superstition is al∣most as strong as religious; and it is quite as uni∣versally used as an instrument of tyranny. To enumerate the variety of ways in which this in∣strument operates on the mind, would be more difficult than to form a general idea of the result of its operations. In monarchies it induces men to spill their blood for a particular family, or for a particu∣lar branch of that family who happens to have been born first, or last; or to have been taught to repeat a certain creed, in preference to other creeds. But the effect which I am going chiefly to notice, is that which respects the territorial boundaries of a government. For a man in Portugal of Spain to prefer belonging to one of those nations rather than the other, is as much superstition, as to prefer the house of Braganza to that of Bourbon, or Mary the second of England to her brother. All these subjects of preference stand upon the same footing as the turban and the hat, the cross and the crescent, or, the lily and the rose.

The boundaries of nations have been fixed for the accommodation of the government, without the least regard to the convenience of the people. Kings Page  14and ministers, who make a profitable trade of go∣verning, are interested in extending the limits of their dominion as far as possible. They have a property in the people, and in the territory that they cover. The country and its inhabitants are to them a farm stocked with sheep. When they call up these sheep to be sheared, they teach them to know their names, to follow their master, and avoid a stranger. By this unaccountable imposition it is, that men are led from one extravagant folly to another,—to adore their king, to boast of their nation, and to wish for conquest,—circumstances equally ridiculous in themselves, and equally in∣comptable with that rational estimation of things, which arises from the science of liberty.

FROM MERRY's ODE, For the 14th. of July, 1791.

HAVE kings and nobles rights alone?
Is this prolific globe their own?
And is the mingled mass beside,
Form'd as the creature of their pride?
Not, so,—the dire deception o'er,
Mankind can now mankind adore;
Nor bauble crowns, nor regal toys,
Shall chat them of their natural joys,
Nor shall they more, by artifice subdued,
Kiss the oppressor's rod, "A SWINISH MULTITUDE."
Have not the titled sons of earth,
Usurpd prerogative of birth;
As though appropriate to descent,
Were high and noble sentiment?
What sentiments can noble be,
But those of truth and liberty?
And what can dignity dispense,
But justice and benevolence?
And are not these the common share,
Of all who breathe this vital air?
Page  15And has not kind impartial Heav'n,
To every rank an equal feeling given?
Virtue alone should vice subdue,
Nor are THE MANY baser than THE FEW.

The Effects of War on the Poor.

(From Mr. Frend's Pamphlet entitled, "Peace and Union.")

THREE days after the debate on the king's mes∣sage, I was walking from my friend's house to the neighbouring town, to inspect the printing of these few sheets, and in my way joined company with two men of the village, who, being employed by the Wool-staplers to let out spinning to the poor, had lately received orders to lower the value of labour. We were talking on this subject, when the exclamations of a groupe of poor women going to market, overhearing our conversation, made an impression on my mind which all the eloquence of the Houses of Lords and Commons cannot efface.— We are to be sconced three pence in the shilling; let others work for me, I'll not. We are to be sconced a fourth part of our labour. What is all this for? I did not dare to tell them what it was for, nor to add insult to misery. What is the be∣heading of a monarch to them? What is the navi∣gation of the Scheldt to them? What is the free∣dom of a great nation to them, but reason for joy? Yet the debating only on these subjects has reached their cottages. They are already sconced three-pence in the shilling. What must be their fate, when we suffer under the most odious scourge of the human race, and the accumulation of taxes takes away half of that daily bread which is scarce suffi∣cient at present for their support?

Oh! that I had the warning voice of an ancient Prophet, that I might penetrate into the inmost re∣cesses Page  16of palaces, and appal the harranguers of se∣nates. I would use no other language than that of the poor market-women. I would cry aloud in the ears of the first magistrate: We are sconced three-pence in the shilling, the fourth part of our labour, for what? I would address myself to the deliberat∣ing bodies: We are sconced three pence in the shilling, the fourth part of our labour, for what? Is there a man that could stand out against this elo∣quence? Yes. Thousands. Three-pence in the shilling for spinning conveys no ideas to them. They know not what a cottage is, they know not how the poor live, how they make up their scanty meal. Perhaps there may be some one in our House of Commons, whose feelings are in union with mine; communicate them to your colleagues, im∣press them with the horror attendant on their deli∣berations; tell them what the deduction of three-pence in the shilling occasions among the myriads of England, And should any grave courtier, pity∣ing the distresses of the poor, be anxious to relieve them, say to him, There is an easy method: let the first magistrate, the peers, the representatives of the people, the rich men of the nation, all who are for war, be sconced one fourth part of their an∣nual income to defray the expence of it. Let them be the first sufferers, let the burden fall on them not on the poor. Alas! my poor countrymen how many years calamity awaits you, before a single dish or a glass of wine will be withdrawn from the ta∣bles of opulence!

At this moment, perhaps the decree is gone forth for war. Let others talk of glory, let others celebrate the heroes, who are to deluge the world with blood—the words of the poor market-women will still resound in my ears—We are sconced three-pence in the shilling, one fourth of our labour. For what!!!

Page  17

A Prognostic of the French Revolution. CHESTERFIELD TO HIS SON.

LondonApril, 13, O. S. 1751.

I Received this moment your letter of the 19th, N. S. with the enclosed pieces relative to the present dispute between the king and the parliament I shall return them by Lord Huntingdon, whom you will soon see at Paris, and who will likewise carry you the piece, which I forgot in making up the packet I sent you by the Spanish Ambassador. The representation of the parliament is very well drawn, suavitor in modo, fortiter in re. They tell the king very respectfully that in a certain case, which they should think it criminal to suppose, they would not obey him. This hath a tendency to, what we call here revolution principles. I do not know what the Lord's anointed, his vicegerent upon earth, divinely appointed by him, and accountable to none but him for his actions, will either think or do, upon these symptoms of reason and good sense, which seem to be breaking out all over France; but this I foresee, that before the end of this century, the trade of both king and priest will not be half so good a one as it has been. Du Clos, in his Reflections, hath observed, and very truly, qu'il y a un germe rasion qui commence â se dêveloper en France. A developpement that must prove fatal to regal and papal pretensions. Prudence may, in many cases recommend an occasional submission to either; but when that ignorance, upon which an implicit faith in both could only be founded, is once re∣moved, God's vicegerent, and Christ's vicar, will only be obeyed and believed, as far as what the one orders, and the other says, is conformable to reason and truth.

Page  18

A LESSON FOR ANTIGALLICANS.

Extracts from a pamphlet, enti••led "A Tour through the Theatre of War, in the Months of November and December, 1792, and January 1793."

—THERE is a vice in the civil polity of al∣most every state in Europe, that is ne∣cessarily the parent of revolution, creating all the misery-and crimes that afflict the great mass of mankind, and driving them to insurrection as a last resource. The government draws the money out of the pockets of the poor, to give it, under the denomination of places and pensions, to the rich. The rich avail themselves of this to accumulate property; till at last their colossal stride reaches from province to province, and the whole land, that seems the birth right of the community, is mono∣polized by a few individuals. The rest of the na∣tion is then left at their mercy; and both the know∣ledge of mankind and experience prove, that the rest of the nation have nothing to hope for at their hands, but what they can obtain by making their own subservient to the support, the luxury, and the pleasure of their lordly masters, who always take care that the salary of their day's labour shall be precisely enough to supply rest and strength for the labours of the next. Thus are they reduced to more working automata, with neither the means nor leisure necessary to acquire instruction, or to soften their manners to social intercourse and enjoyments; and thus is the human species degraded, The evil, by a necessary progression, grows greater; for the number of rich growing smaller, proportion as the most wealthy swallow up the rest, the demand for labour becomes less, while the competition for employment increases. A harder bargain is conse∣quently made, till at last the point of sufferance is past, the boast of burden kicks the load off his back, turns to a beast of prey, tears every thing he meets with to pieces, and takes a blind and furious ven∣geance Page  19for all the oppression he has suffered. Of this continued the Frenchinan with a sigh, my country is a lamentable example.

After this monopoly of landed property, the grand source of human vices and misfortunes. the greatest scourge that can afflict a people is an exten∣siv foreign commerce. If by the nation be under∣stood a few merchants. ship owners. ship's husbands, brokers, bankers manufactres, and fiscal officers, the nation is indeed prosperous when trade is in a thriving state. But if by the nation we may be al∣lowed to understand all those not comprised in the above description, that is to say at least nine-tenths of the community, the case is the reverse. It is self evident, that foreign commerce can only con∣sist of exportation and importation, ••less indeed where a people should be merely brokers and car∣riers for others. It is equally evident, that a coun∣try can only export what is produced by the labour of its inhabitants on the soil. or by their drudgery in manufactures If then no part of what is im∣ported comes to the share of those who drudge and toil. can it be denied that they give up ease, plenty and leisure, for nothing? that the necessaries of life, the enjoyments, and repose of the many, are sacrificed to feed the luxury of the few? What a noble export trade does Ireland carry on in beef, pork, butter, and flour! Well, what does the na∣tion at large. that live in that fertile country get in return? The advantage of never lasting meat, bread, or butter: of feedng on potatoes and butter-milk, and sleeping among the litter of their pigs; all which their noble landlords while drinking French wines, and wearing French silks, assure us is vastly conducive to their health! Oh! but in some other countries those who furnish all the exports, obtain a small portion of the returns. Yes; from America a noxious and intoxicating weed, an enervating drink from Asia, and from the other parts of Eu∣rope liquid poisons, that do indeed for a moment Page  20make them forget the sacrifice they cost.

This evil is the offspring of the former; for if property were divided with any tolerable equality, a man would begin by providing amply for his sup∣port, comfort, and enjoyment; and would only suffer the surplus to be exchanged for foreign su∣perfluities; nor would he for superfluities con∣demn himself to incessant labour. I have made an exact calculation, continued he; and I find that four hours of work in a day, in our temperate cli∣mates, would suffice for the subsistence of a man and his family. Those that remain would afford him leisure for instruction and reflection; and it would then become impossible for such men to be imposed upon by the cant of a few interested indi∣viduals, who assure them that the nation has reach∣ed the highest pitch of prosperity, because they themselves have obtained every gratification o not and luxury that they can devise. But to keep men ignorant, you must make them work, and to make them work you must keep them ignorant. This is the eternal circle in which rolls the torrent of abuse. I have often heard it said, that Heaven made some for enjoyment, and some for toil. I con∣fess that I cannot myself see, why those who do nothing should have all, and why those who do all should have nothing.

He hold a number of political tenets more ex∣traordinary still. He said, when wars were declar∣ed by the caprice, or for the interests of kings, that kings alone should fight the battles; that i a na∣tion at large were consulted, hostilities would rare∣ly occur; that a country should never engage in a war in defence of a state, on which it is found it cannot depend for defence; that a minister who should attempt to embroil his country for futile or insufficient reasons, should be sent abroad, to fulfil in person the engagements he might have made; that the best way to prevent wars would be for every one to understand the use 〈◊〉 which is Page  21indeed the bounden duty of every freeman; for without the means of resisting oppression, who can flater himself that he is free?—A large state would then be unattackable, and the fee simple of a small one would not be worth the conquest.

He said, that magistrates, who should assume no improper power, could never be afraid of its being wrested out of their hand; and that the majoriy of a nation has a right to a bad government, upon the absurd supposition of its chusing such a one, in preference to a good one's bing thrust down their throats. But these and many other of his strange opinions, I forbear to mention, lest I should expose my new acquaintance to the censure of

Those wholesale c••tics, that in Coffee.
Houses cry down all philosophy.

All along the road from Calais to Dunkirk, from Dunkirk to Lisle, add from Lisle to Valenciennes we hardly saw a man that had not assumed some, thing of a military garb and appearance. Some had a sword and belt thrown over their shoulder, some had a feather in their hats, and some were fully accoutred. In a word, or rather in the words of Shakespeare, we found them

All furnish'd, all in arms,
All plum'd like estides.

The diligence with which they were practising the military exercise in many places, and the hear∣tiness in the cause that they expressed in all would have sufficed to convince us, that the idea many people in England affect to entertain of a small faction domineering it over the whole nation, was totally destitute of foundation, had any proof been wanting to overthrow an opinion so indefensible. How is it possible for a small part to oppress the whole, when all are armed? Yes: but the party averse to the revolutionists, though the most nume∣rous, are afraid to shew themselves.—Why, then what a wretched opinion must they have of their Page  22cause, or what sorry dastards must they be? How∣ever, to "make assurance doubly sure," I conversed with numbers of people, of all ranks, on my way and found them, with very few exceptions, agreed upon the great principle of liberty. They fre∣quently lamented that many unwise steps had been taken by their representatives, and reprobated the infamous crimes of particular factions; but they considered them, at the same time, as partial and accidental abuses of a system generally and essenti∣ally good. Here and there I met with a man, who openly regretted the old government: nor was it a little remarkable, that the greatest aristocrats I heard speak of politics, were employed by the new go∣vernment in the civil and military line. Let it however be remembered, that the Department of the north is one of those the most suspected of ari∣stocracy,

On December 6th we set off for Brussels. Desi∣rous of not meeting with the same difficulties in our way that we had experienced in coming from Va∣lenciennes, we hiei an excellemt carriage, with four horses. This was the more necessary, as we did not leave Mons till the morning was far advanced. We found the roads entirely covered with convoys going to the army, with detachments of troops, and with straggling soldiers trudging on to join their respective regiments.

A thaw had lately taken place, the carriages de∣prived them of the benefit of the pavement, and they were obliged to wade through mud half way up their legs. Yet still their native gaiety support∣ed them, and on they went, singing ca ira, and other patriotic tunes. We took up behind us two of thse that seemed the most tired. It is only giv∣ing a florin or two more to the coachman, said my companion, and sleeping in the superbs instead of the town A little further on, as we were going slowly up a hill, I saw a young lad walking very Page  23lame, and losing his shoe at every moment in the mud. As he did not call upon pestilence and the devil to run away with them, and the road into the bargain, I was sure he could not be a French∣man. although he had the national uniform on his back. We asked him if he also would get up be∣hind, and he joyfully accepted our offer. But as the weather was cold, and he seemed weakly, we soon after found means to make room for him in our carriage. I then asked him if he had been wounded.—Dieu merci! he had only been cut down at the battle of Jemappe, and then wounded in the foot, while lying on the ground, which was the reason of his walking so lame. I told him he was too young to run such hazards, and bear the fatigues of a military life. Too young! said he, with a proud smile, that ill concealed a little indignation; too young! why I am now nineteen, and near three years ago was shot through the body in the Belgic war. He added that at the beginning of the present campaign he had been ill of a fever; that he had been sent to the hospital at Maubeuge; that in the time of his convalescence, he had walked out with some of his comrades; that they had fallen in with a party of French, who were engaged with the ene∣my at Grisoelle; that he had taken up a dead man's musket to have his shot, tout comme un autre; and that a ball from the rifle gun of a Tyrolian chasseur, had hit him in the neck.

When I enquired into the motives of his taking up arms, he said he had been on the side of the pa∣triots before, and had heard that they were up again, and so he had lft his home at Namur, where he had a father, a mother, and a little sister assez aim∣able, and he would leave them again, as soon as it should please God and the blessed Virgin to cure the lameness of his foot; for a patriot should always fight for his country, and should not mind a wound or two, or a little pain, in a good cause. I am now Page  24going to Brussels, said he, to see some relations I have there.—Go where thou wilt, said I to myself, thou art a brave youth, and not only a patriot but a philosopher, although I verily believe thou dost not know the meaning of the word.

Gaiety was ever the Frenchman's birth-right, but never was it so strongly exhibited as since they have been animated by the spirit of Patriotism. This cheerfulness is always accompanied by another cha∣racteristic of the nation; an uncommon degree of carelessness and disregard of danger. In the plains of Champaigne, the two armies were often in sight and almost within shot of each other: At such times, there stood the Prussians menacing a charge, in re∣gular array, with supported arms, and motionless as statues; and here were the French, dancing in rings around their fires, and broiling their meat on the points of their bayonets.

On a march, woe to the game that gets up be∣fore them; a hundred soldiers are sure to send after it the contents of their muskets, not without dan∣ger of shooting their comrades, Even the presence of the enemy is insufficient to correct this deviation from discipline. It once happened, as a battalion of volunteers was advancing to the attack, in the momentary expectation of receiving and returning the enemy's fire, that they trod up a solitary hare. As she run along the line, she was saluted with an universal shout, and with a shot or two at least from every company she passed. The fugitive however escaped it being no easy matter to kill so small an animal with a single ball.

The old animosity, and false point of honour, that used to set regiment against regiment, and man against man, and that were supposed every year to cost the state the lives of five hundred soldiers, are so much forgot, that a duel is now a thing of very unfrequent occurrence. It was predicted, that endless dissensions and jealousies Page  25would embroil the regular troops with the national guards, but these fears were so ill founded, that it is impossible to conceive an army living in more univer∣sal harmony than that of Dumourier. At public and private tables, nothing is more common than to see the shoulder-knot of a grenadier touching the epaulet of a Colonel; nor does this vicinage seem to surprise either party. The one shews no haughtiness, the other no servility, and both interchange upon equal terms the salutation of Citizen or Comrade. Though a stranger may be startled at it at first, his wonder di∣minishes when he finds that not a few of the common national volunteers are men of property, some of them possessing ten, twenty, and thirty thousand livres a year. Many of those I spoke with supported well the national character of politeness, but they had discarded the frivolous flippancy that was but too frequently its companion. They assumed no credit for their cou∣rage, spoke of their giving up ease and comfort to encounter the danger and hardships of a military life, as only discharging a debt they owed to their coun∣try; lamented its being desolated by war and faction; and vowed to see their enemies humbled, or to sleep in the dust. I listened to them with admiration, and, God and Mr. Burke forgive me, I thought I should have disgraced them by a comparison with the de∣funct chivalry of France.

Many of the officers, many even of the superior ranks, have been raised from that of a private soldier. In a ball or drawing-room, they would, no doubt, make an aukward figure; but surely, after a long ap∣prenticeship to war, they are as fit to lead a company or a battalion into the fire, as a giddy and beardless boy, just broke loose from the military school.

Republican severity is by degrees removing that foppishness in dress and manners that sprung from the example of a frivolous court. The small sword, that formerly dangled at the side of the French of∣ficers and soldiers, has resigned its place to a weighty sabre. The three-cornered hat, that sheltered them neither from rain, sun, nor blows, is very generally Page  26changed into a helmet. Their hair, far the most part cut short, is in the state nature gave it; and many of their whiskers grow unchecked by the razor. The whole of their dress, in short, bespeaks more attention to utility than show. Some of their new corps must however be excepted, particularly the legion of the celebrated St. George. This is a body of seven hun∣dred men, composed of Creoles, Negroes, and Mu∣lattoes, and is dressed and accoutred in the richest and most brilliant manner.

I dined one day in company with a black captain of horse, and judged this new Othello to be worthy of his occupation. His easy and polite manners de∣served, and met with the respect and attention of a great number of officers that were present. As for me, it did me good to see the general fraternity of mankind so nobly established, and convinced me, that all the worthless parts of the human race are only so, because debased by their political institutions.

Till I came to Liege, I never could give entire be∣lief to the wonderful effects said to have been pro∣duced by the music of the ancients. How is it possi∣ble, I used to say, that among the multitude of our instruments, and the endless variety of our compo∣sitions, one of those moving sounds, or powerful pas∣sages, should never yet have been hit upon? But when I came to Liege, the struggle between my faith and my reason was at an end. I thought I discovered, that those enthusiastic emotions were not excited in the Greeks by the mechanical operation of "a con∣cord of sweet sounds," but by the subject of their lays, the circumstances they stood in, and the dispo∣sition of their minds. In their old popular govern∣ments, glory and duty went hand in hand, and the persecution of their liberty, called forth the fanati∣cism of freedom. Such is the situation of the French, and such are their feelings, as I had an opportunity of observing at the dinner I have just mentioned. While we were at table, some itinerant musicians were ad∣mitted. I need not say that their music, vocal and instrumental, was far from being of an excellent kind. Page  27It was, nevertheless, astonishing to see the effect the Marseilles Hymn produced upon the company. When they came to the passage aux armes, Citoyens! all the French officers joined them in concert, most untune∣able indeed, but with very forcible expression. Some of them stood up erect in military attitude, grasping their swords; and I saw tears trickle down faces as hard as iron. In my early youth I had felt much of the martial mania myself; but my long vacancy from warlike occupation, since the last peace, had given time to reason to take the place of sentiment; and cold calculations of safety and repose had damped if not extinguished all military ardour. The contagion, however, reached me; I repeated aux armes with the rest, and felt that I was again become a soldier.

This valour at table is well maintained in the field. If I had only the bare word of the French for it, I should not fail to make a large abatement for this self-praise. Credit, however, cannot be refused to the universal testimony of the natives of the country, who speak with artless wonder of what they call the rage of the new republicans. This bravery is the more meritorious, as a large proportion of their sol∣diers are boys. But they are boys, according to the words of our favourite dramatist, "with ladies' faces and fierce dragon's spleen."

During the whole of the journey we remarked, that the apprehension of a war with England was peculiarly painful to the French. Though flushed with their late successes, and "confident against a world in arms," it was evident there was nothing they dreaded more than such an event; not merely on account of the mischief that might ensue, but be∣cause it would force them to regard as enemies the only nation in Europe they considered as their friends.

All along the road, they anxiously asked us what we thought would be the consequence of the arma∣ment in England? We frankly told them, we pre∣sumed it would be war, and generally observed a mo∣ment Page  28of silence and dejection follow the delivery of our opinion. But soon, bristling up at the aspect of new dangers, several of them said—"Well! if all the world be determined to fight with us, we will fight with all the world. We can be killed but once.

The imminence of hostilities, however, diminished in no degree the respect they shewed us as English∣men; and not only we did not meet with any thing like an insult in the whole of our tour; but, on the contrary, we experienced every where particular kind∣ness and attention. They seemed eagerly to court our good opinion; and frequently begged us not to ascribe to a whole nation the faults of individuals, and not to charge their government with disorders its present state of vacillation rendered it incompe∣tent to repress. If there was any disputing such high authorities as Mr. Burke, and the collective wisdom of the kings of the continent, I confess I should never have suspected, that I was travelling among a nation of savages, madmen, and assassins. I should rather have wished with Shakespeare,

—that these contending kingdoms,
England and France, whose very shores look pale
With envy of each other's happiness,
May cease their hatred—
—that never war advance
Her bleeding sword 'twixt England and fair France—
That English may as French, French Englishmen,
Receive each other.

They looked upon Louis XVI. as a tyrant and a traitor, who had brought a disastrous war upon their country. Though a king, they considered him as no more than another man. And let us Britons, penitus ab orbe divisi, who have a special privilege for judging better of what passes all over the world, than all the world, pity this lamentable mistake. Let us be the more indulgent, as the superior beings expressed no particular concern. The Heavens did not shed a tear; no earthly convulsion rent the veil Page  29of the Temple, nor did the thunder, rolling on the left of the guilty city, reprobate the atrocity of the action.

Nay, in proportion as our feelings are sensibly affected at the death of a king we have so few of us seen, let us make some allowance for the feelings of others. The minds of the Parisians were peculiarly irritated. Thousands of them had lost their dearest friends, and their nearest relatives, in the bloody seenes of which the deceased monarch had been the wilful, or the occasional cause; and they all saw their country invested by cruel and innumerable foes, who were come with the declared intention of reinstating him in his former despotism, and who asserted that he was the insidious accomplice of their hostile attack.

The same deeds done in different circumstances may stand as wide asunder as the poles. The killing of a man from whom we have received no offence, or upon strong provocation, constitutes in the first case, a horrible crime; in the second, a fault that may admit of excuse. Considered in this point of view, even the sanguinary scenes of the beginning of September may allow some little extenuation. Let no man imagine, that I mean in any degree to justify what I have never yet suffered with patience a French∣man to defend. My blood has ever been chilled by the horrid recital; nor have I a dearer wish, than to see the instigators and preformers of these base and atrocious actions punished as they deserve. But it is not the less true, that the Parisians were driven to despair by the Duke of Brunswick's approach to Paris, and by his infamous manifestoes. Bouille's threat of not leaving stone upon stone in the capital, was back∣ed by the menaces of the Emigrants. Their cruel conduct on the frontiers plainly showed the inhabitants of Paris what they had to expect. When the whole strength of the city rose to repel the enemy, they feared that they should leave their aged fathers, and their defenceless children, to the mercy of a band of conspirator, of which the part that was in the prisons Page  30was to be set at liberty by their accomplices with∣out.

Be this true or false, it is certain that such was their persuasion; and I have been assured by a re∣spectable French merchant, who mixed, without par∣ticipating in these horrid scenes, that all the prisoners had received a day or two before stockings, striped blue and white, to enable them to recognize each other. Their being in this uniform, he said he could attest from his own observation. The nobles and the priests had also their distinctive marks. If I could doubt the assertions of numbers who pretend to have seen these marks, I could not easily reject the testi∣mony of a youth, too ingenuous to deceive, and too young to invent, who was present at the massacre in the Convent of Carmelite Friars. He says, that he saw cards, taken from the breasts of the murdered priests, on which were depicted a royal crown, and a crown of thorns, with the words Regiment de Salomon written above, and below miserere nostri. Why then should an event, enchained with so many incidents and circumstances, be considered as the natural con∣sequence of the revolution? Those who affect to look upon it in this light, and who would fain make it an argument for the extermination of the new principles of liberty, are not aware, that while the Saint Bar∣tholomew in France, and the massacre of protestants in Ireland (scenes of blood far less provoked, and of much greater extent) are upon record; they are not aware, I say, that their bold conclusion involves the condemnation of the christian religion, and the pro∣scription of all kings.

But admitting that the page of history was never so fouly stained before, this is so far from being a reason for bringing the French under the yoke of their old despotism, that it is the strongest argument that can be found for letting them try the experiment of a new government. As the cruelty with which they are re∣proached has marked their conduct from the first day of the revolution, it is evident that their old govern∣ment made them what they are; for who will believe, Page  31that there is any thing in the kindly climate or grate∣ful soil of France to render its inhabitants serocious, or that the taking of the Bastile instilled this sudden venom into their souls. It is indeed little to be won∣dered at, that a people treated like brutes, for so many centuries, should become like brutes when they broke their chain.

It may perhaps be safer, in this christian land, for the man who rejoiced that there were prisons for the libellers of a queen, to libel a whole nation, and to advise the cutting of his fellow-creatures throats, from generation to generation, than it is for another to inculcate charity to our neighbours, by a candid statement of facts, and demonstrable truth. But as my tour induced me to relate the things I saw, and as these things led me naturally to the reflections that accompany the mention of them, I defy reproach, and trust that my readers will shew some indulgence to the hasty production of an unskilful pen.

ON THE EXCELLENCY OF A FREE GO∣VERNMENT, AND ITS TENDENCY TO EXALT THE NATURE OF MAN.

EVERY Member of a Free State, having his pro∣perty secure, and knowing himself his own go∣vernor, possesses a consciousness of dignity in himself, and feels incitements to emulation and improvement, to which the miserable slaves of arbitrary power must be utter strangers. In such a state all the springs of action have room to operate, and the mind is stimu∣lated to the noblest exertions. But to be obliged, from our birth, to look up to a creature no better than ourselves, as the master of our fortunes; and to Page  32receive his will as our law—What can be more hu∣miliating? What elevated ideas can enter a mind in such a situation?—Agreeably to this remark, the subjects of free states have, in all ages, been most di∣stinguished for genius and knowledge. Liberty is the soil where the arts and sciences have flourished; and the more free a state has been, the more have the powers of the human mind been drawn forth into action; and the greater number of BRAVE men has it produced. With what lustre do the ancient free states of Greece shine in the annals of the world? How different is that country now, under the Great Turk? The difference between a country inhabited by men, and by brutes, is not greater.

These are reflections which should be constantly present to every mind in this country. As moral liberty is the prime blessing of man in his private ca∣pacity, so is civil liberty in his public capacity. There is nothing that requires more to be w•••hed than power. There is nothing that ought to be opposed with a more determined resolution than its •••roach∣ments. Sleep in a state, as Montesquien says, is always followed by slavery.

The people of this kingdom were once warmed by such sentiments as these. Many a sycophant of power have they sacrificed. Often have they fought and bled in the cause of Liberty. But that time seems to be going. The fair inheritance of liberty left us by our ancestors many of us are not unwilling to resign. An unbounded venality, the inseparable companion of dissipation and extravagance, has poi∣soned the springs of public virtue among us: and should any events ever arise that should render the same opposition necessary that took place in the times of King Charles the First, and James the Second, I am afraid all that is valuable to us would be lost.— The terror of the standing army, the danger of the pub∣lic funds, and the all-corrupting influence of the treasury, would deaden all zeal, and produce general acquiescence and servility.

Page  33

A LAMENTATION FOR THE OPPRESSED.

From the Deserted Village.

SWEET smiling Village, loveliest of the lawn,
Thy sports are fled, and all thy charms withdrawn;
Amidst thy bowers the tyrant's hand is seen,
And desolation saddens all the green;
One only master grasps the whole domain,
And half a tillage stints thy smiling plain:
No more thy glassy brook reflects the day,
But choak'd with sedges, works its weedy way.
Along thy glades, a solitary guest,
The hollow sounding bittern guards its nest;
Amidst thy desart walks the lapwing flies,
And tires their echoes with unvaried cries.
Sunk are thy bowers, in shapeless ruin all,
And the long grass o'ertops the mould'ring wall;
And trembling, shrinking from the spoiler's hand,
Far, far away, thy children leave the land.
Ill fares the land, to hastening ills a prey,
Where wealth accumulates, and men decay;
Princes and lords may flourish or may fade;
A breath can make them, as a breath has made;
But a bold peasantry, their country's pride,
When once destroy'd, can never be supplied.
A time there was, ere England's griefs began,
When every rood of ground maintain'd its man,
For him light labour spread her wholesome store,
Just gave what life required, but gave no more:
His best companions, innocence and health;
And his best riches, ignorance of wealth.
But times are alter'd; trade's unfeeling train
Usurp the land, and dispossess the swain;
Along the lawn, where scattered hamlets rose,
Unweildy wealth, and cumbrous pomp repose;
And every want to opulence allied,
And every pang that folly pays to pride.
These gentle hours that plenty bade to bloom,
Those calm desires that ask'd but little room,
Page  34Those healthful sports that grac'd the peaceful scene▪
Liv'd in each look, and brighten'd all the green;
These far departing seek a kinder shore,
And rural mirth and manners are no more.
Yes! let the rich deride, the proud disdain,
These simple blessings of the lowly train;
To me more dear, congenial to my heart,
One native charm, than all the gloss of art;
Spontaneous joys, where nature has its play,
The soul adopt, and owns their first-born sway;
Lightly they frolic o'er the vacant mind,
Unenvied, unmolested, unconfin'd.
But the long pomp, the midnight masquerade,
With all the freaks of wanton wealth array'd,
In these, ere trifles half their wish obtain,
The toiling pleasure sickens into pain;
And, even while fashions brightest arts decoy,
The heart distrusting asks, if this be joy?
Ye friends to truth, ye statesmen, who survey
The rich man's joys encrease, the poor's decay,
Tis yours to judge, how wide the limits stand
Between a splendid and an happy land.
Proud swells the tide with loads of freighted ore,
And snouring folly hails them from her shore;
Hoards even beyond the miser's wish abound,
And rich men flock from all the world around,
Yet count our gains. This wealth is but a name
That leaves our useful products still the same.
Not so the loss. The man of wealth and pride,
Takes up a space that many poor supplied;
Space for his lake; his parks extended bounds;
Space for his horses, equipage, and hounds;
The robe that wraps his limbs in silken sloth,
Has robb'd the neighbouring fields of half their growth;
His seat, where solitary sports are seen,
Indignant spurns the cottage from the green;
Around the world each needful product flies,
For all the luxuries the world supplies,
While thus the land adorn'd for pleasure, all
In barren splendor feebly waits the fall.
Page  35
As some fair female unadorn'd and plain,
Secure to please while youth confirms her reign,
Slights every borrowed charm that dress supplies,
Nor shares with art the triumph of her eyes;
But when those charms are past, for charms are frail,
When time advances and when lovers fail,
She then shines forth, solicitous to bless,
In all the glaring impotence of dress.
Thus fares the land by luxury betrayed,
In nature's simplest charmes at first arrayed,
But verging to decline, its splendors rife,
Its vistas strike, its palaces surprize;
While scourg'd by famine from the smiling land,
The mournful peasant leads his humble band;
And while he sinks without one arm to save,
The country blooms—a garden, and a grave.
Where then, ah where, shall poverty reside,
To scape the pressure of contiguous pride.
If to some common's fenceless limits stray'd,
He drives his flock to pick the scanty blade.
Those fenceless fields the sons of whealth divide,
And even the bare-worn common is denied.
If to the city sped—What waits him there?
To see profusion that he must not share;
To see ten thousand baneful arts combin'd
To pamper luxury and thin mankind;
To see those joys the sons of pleasure know,
Extorted from his fellow-creatures' woe.
Here where the courtier glitters in brocade,
There the pale artist plies the sickly trade;
Here, while the proud their long-dawn pomps display,
There the black gibbet glooms beside the way.
The dome where pleasure holds her midnight reign,
Here richly deck'd, admits the gorgeous train;
Tumultuous grandeur crowds the blazing square,
The rattling chariots clash, the torches glare.
Sure scenes like these no troubles e'er annoy?
Sure these denote one universal joy?
Are these thy serious thoughts?—Ah, turn thine eyes
Where the poor houseless shivering female lies.
Page  36She once perhaps in village plenty blest,
Has wept at tales of innocence distrest;
Her modest looks the cottage might adorn,
Sweet as the primrose peeps beneath the thorn;
Now lost to all; her friends, her virtue sled;
Near her betrayer's door she lays her head,
And pinch'd with cold, and shrinking from the shower,
With heavy heart deplores that luckless hour,
When idly first ambitious of the town,
She left her wheel and robes of country brown.

ON THE RESPONSIBILITY OF KINGS.

From THE CANDID PHILOSOPHER.

I ONCE thought that in point of morals the ac∣tions of all men, however distinguished in rank, stood on the same footing, and were entitled to the same praise or censure. I thought that the morality of a monarch and of a private man, as prescribed by the same divine authority, were exactly the same. But I find the world thinks otherwise. The world thinks, that what is fit and just in a subject is not so in a king; that a king is not bound by those narrow rules that were only intended to bind the vulgar herd; and that a king may commit actions which, though highly criminal in a subject, are not so in him. Owing to these opinions, a political and prac∣tical system has been drawn by acute statesmen, and metaphysical lawyers; in which, among other equally judicious principles, they lay it down as a rule, that though in the case of a subject the master is answer∣able for the ill conduct of his servants, yet in the case of a sovereign, he is not responsible for the errors and misconduct of his ministers▪ So far from it, they are accountable for his misconduct and errors, if such Page  37he could commit, for they say he cannot. They say he is not a FREE AGENT, but a more machine. and as such can do no wrong [therefore can do no right] the reason of this they tell us is, that the king is always supposed to be advised by his ministers, and, there∣fore, to imagine he was capable of doing injustice, or was to be made responsible for his actions, would be to destroy his independence. This is paying the king but a very scorbutic compliment. To represent him as a machine, and the mouth-piece of his ministers, is treat∣ing him as an idiot, or a puppet moved by wires. And with respect to the independency they want to ascribe to the king, I insist on it they rob him of it entirely, ac∣cording to their system; and render him the most ab∣ject, pitiful dependent creature imaginable, dependent on the nod, the wink, the command of his servants. They make him a very child in leading strings, unfit to walk himself, but to be led blind-fold wherever his tutors shall be pleased to drag him. Whether this is the case in reality with any king now living, I pre∣sume not to say; but it has been the case of multitudes, whom HISTORY has damned to everlasting infamy in her fair and impartial page. If in a point of this delicate nature I may dare to hazard an opinion, I would say, that I think a king (I mean of Utopia not of England) ought to be personally responsible for his misconduct, as much as a private man is for his: that a king ought to be responsible for his misconduct in choosing igno∣rant or wicked ministers: That though a king takes the advice of others, yet, as advice does not bind his conduct, he is as much accountable for it as the pri∣vate malefactor would be in taking and pursuing the ill advice of his comrades to rob or murder.

Page  38

FROM THE SAME. ROMAN PATRIOTISM FOUNDED ON INJUSTICE, AND THE RUIN OF MANKIND.

THE patriotism of ancient Rome has been much extolled by modern writers, but I think unjustly. Her patriotism was founded on the most flagrant in∣justice and iniquity, and therefore deserved not so much to be called patriotism, as a desire to render Rome the mistress of the universe.

For this purpose she scrupled not committing all manner of tyrannous and wicked acts against the li∣berties of mankind. Her feverish fondness for uni∣versal empire laid desolate all the known world. The possessions, the habitations, the paintings, the sculp∣tures, all the riches of the Romans, were the spoils of plundered nations. Thus they erected to them∣selves an empire as unwieldy as it was unjust, on the ruins of their fellow creatures. What then are all their beautiful lectures and pompous declamations on the love of their country? What their laboured ora∣tions in praise of LIBERTY? Indisputable proofs indeed of their eloquence; but not of their humanity. If the language of benevolence were to constitute the character, we must allow it is due to these Romans; but if actions are to afertain the right, and to be con∣sidered as the criterion of justice, we shall find it a dif∣ficult matter to make good their claim, though we were masters of eloquence equal to their own.

A DESCRIPTION OF ENGLAND.

From the LETTERS OF A PERSIAN IN ENGLAND, TO HIS FRIEND AT ISPAHAN.

THOU askest if the English are as free as hereto∣fore? the courtiers assure me confidently that Page  39they are; but the men who have least relation to the court, are daily alarming themselves and others with apprehension of danger to their liberty.—I have been told that the Parliament is the curb to the king's au∣thority: and yet I am well informed, that the only way to advancement in the court is to gain a seat in Parliament.

The House of Commons is the representative of the nation, nevertheless there are many great towns which send to deputies thither, and many hamlets, almost un∣inhabited, that have a right of sending two. Several members have never seen their electors, and several are elected by the Paliament, who were rejected by the people. All the electors swear not to sell their voices, yet many of the candidates are undone by the expence of buying them. This whole affair is involved in deep mistery, and inexplicable difficulties.

Thou askest if commerce be as flourishing as for∣merly: Some whom I have consulted upon that head say, it is now in its meridian; and there is really an appearance of its being so; for luxury is prodigiously encreased, and it is hard to imagine how it can be supported without an inexhaustible trade: But others pretend, that this very luxury is a proof of its decline; and they add, that the frauds and villanies in all the trading companies, are so many inward poisons, which if not speedily expelled, will destroy it entirely in a little time.

Thou wouldst know if property be so safely guarded as is generally believed: It is certain that the whole power of a King of England cannot force an acre of land from the weakest of his subjects; but a knavish attorney will take away his whole estate by those very laws which were designed for its security: The judges are uncorrupt, appeals are free, and notwithstanding all these advantages it is usually better for a man to lose his right than to sue for it.

These, Mirza, are the contradictions that perplex me. My judgment is bewildered in uncertainty; Page  40I doubt my own observations and distrust the rela∣tions of others: more time and better information may perhaps clear them up to me; till then modesty forbids me to impose my conjectures upon thee, after the manner of Christian travellers, whose prompt decisions are the effect rather of folly than penetra∣tion.

A LESSON FOR GENTLEMEN VOLUN∣TEERS.

From the LETTERS OF A PERSIAN IN ENGLAND TO HIS FRIEND AT ISPAHAN.

AS I was walking in the fields, near this city, the other morning, a disbanded soldier, some∣what in years, implored my charity, and to excite my compassion, bared his bosom, on which were the scars of many wounds, all received in the service of his country. I gladly relieved his wants, and being desirous to inform myself of every thing, fell into discourse with him on the wars in which he had served. He told me he had been present at the taking of ten or twelve strong towns, and had a share in the danger and glory of almost as many victories. How then, said I, comes it to pass that you are laid aside? Thy strength is indeed in its decline, but not yet wasted; and I should think that experience would well supply the loss of youth. Alas! Sir, answered he, I have a good heart, and tolerable limbs, but I want three inches more of stature: I am brave and able enough, thank God, but not quite handsome enough to be a soldier.

How then didst thou serve so long, returned I, in Flanders? Sir, said he, there were some thousands such ill-looking fellows, who did very well in the day Page  41of battle, but would make no figure at a review.—It appears to me very strange, replied I, that thou should∣est be poor after fighting so many years with such great success. The plunder of a single town in the east is enough to enrich every soldier that helped to take it. Plunder! Sir, said he; we have no such term in the modern art of war. We fight for sixpence a day.—But when you have gained a battle do you get nothing by it?—Yes, said he, we have the ad∣vantage to go on and besiege a town.—Ay, then, my honest lad, comes your harvest.—Then, Sir, replied he, it defends itself till we are half of us destroyed: and when it can hold out no longer, it capitulates; that is, every burgher saves his house, and every soldier carries off his baggage.—What becomes of the conquering army?—Why the conquering army has the pleasure to besiege another town, which capitulates also; and at the end of the campaign it goes into quarters.—But when you enter an enemy's country don't you raise contributions? The generals do, an∣swered he, but military discipline allows no part of it to the common soldiers; they have just sixpence a day as they had before.

A LESSON FOR ALL MEN.

From LOOKE ON GOVERNMENT.

WHETHER we consider natural reason, which tells us, that men, being once born, have a right to their preservation, and consequently to meat and drink, and such other things as nature affords for their subsistence: Or revelation, which gives us an account of those grants God made of the world to Adam, and to Noah, and his sons; it is very clear, that God, (as King David says, Psal. 115.16.) HAS GIVEN THE EARTH TO THE CHILDREN OF MEN, GIVEN IT TO MANKIND IN COMMON.

Page  42

FROM SPENCE's RIGHTS OF MAN.

A SONG, to be sung at the Commencement of the Milen∣nium, when there shall be neither Lords nor Landlords, but God and Man will be all in all.

FIRST PRINTED IN THE YEAR 1782.

Tune, "God save the King."
1
HARK! how the trumpet's sound *
Proclaims the land around
The Jubilee!
Tells all the poor oppress'd,
No more they shall be cess'd,
Nor landlords more molest
Their property.
2.
Rents t' ourselves now we pay,
Dreading no quarter day,
Fraught with distress.
Welcome that day draws near,
For then our rents we share ,
Earth's rightful lords we are
Ordain'd for this.
Page  433.
How hath the oppressor ceas'd,
And all the world releas'd
From misery!
The fir-trees all rejoice,
And cedars lift their voice,
Ceas'd now the FELLER's noise,
Long rais'd by thee.
4.
The sceptre now is broke,
Which with continual stroke
The nations smote!
Hell from beneath doth rise,
To meet thy lofty eyes,
From the most pompous size,
How brought to nought!
5.
Since then this Jubilee
Sets all at Liberty
Let us be glad.
Behold each man return
To his possession
No more like doves to mourn
By landlords sad!
Page  44

ALL MONARCHIES NATURALLY TEND TO DESPOTISM.

From CHESTERFIELD'S LETTERS.

THOUGH Monarchies may differ a good deal, Kings differ very little. Those who are abso∣lute desire to continue so, and those who are not, endeavour to become so; hence, the same maxims and manners, almost in all courts: Voluptuousness and profusion are encouraged, the one to sink the people into indolence, the other into poverty, con∣sequently into despondency.

A MODEST PLEA FOR AN EQUAL COMMONWEALTH, AGAINST MONARCHY.

Published in the Year 1659.

THOUGH I was never possest with a evil spirit of opposition, or genius of contrad•••••g and snarling at what is present; but rather studied at least a passive, if not an active compliance with the present power; as knowing there was never any power, whose commission was not passed, if not un∣der the broad seal of Heaven's approbation, yet at least by the privy-seal of God's permissive providence; which I have always taken as a sufficient warrant for paying the tribute of passive obedience, wheresoever I received the benefit of reciprocal protection: Yet I cann•• but acknowledge some governments more pure, refined, and less prone to corruption, than others; and certainly, those wherein the supreme magistrate (whether one or more) hath an interest Page  45distinct from that of the people, must be most apt to degenerate, and have greatest propensity to tyranny and oppression. Now whether monarchy, that winds up all the strings in the instrument of government to the interest of a single person; that tunes laws, religion, and all things, to an harmony and compliance with the monarch's single will, may not justly be suspected of this strain, I leave at the bar of any considerate man's judgment to be decided.

Certainly, whatever gloss or varnish the courtship or flatteries of princes or their parasites may set upon it, such a government is diametrically opposite to, and inconsistent with, the true liberty and happiness of any people.

I remember to have read a pretty strange passage of one of the French kings, that he was the most religious prince, and greatest tyrant that ever wore the crown of France. I was (I confess) some time startled at the strangeness of the character; but our late experience of one, might wear the same livery, makes me able not only to digest the wonder, but also to give credence to this general aphorism, that whatever may be the qualifications of any prince in reference to the personal endowments of his mind, the title of good was never justly attributed to any king, in reference to his office, except comparatively: And therefore, in my apprehension, elective king∣doms have small advantage of hereditary, by reason the unhappiness of such governments seems not so much to spring from the nature of the person admi∣nistering, as of the office and dignity, which ever lays an iron yoke of slavery and oppression on the peoples' necks: So that, considering the vast expence of blood and treasure with which the competition of the office and dignity is usually managed by the scarlet candidates of crowns and sceptres, an here∣ditary monarchy may seem eligible, as the lesser evil; especially, if by some fundamental constitution, like the Salique law of France, the absurd (though not Page  46unusual) pretensions of women and children might be cut off: For to hang the keys of the power civil and ecclesiastic upon apron strings, and to put the sceptre into a hand sitter to were a distaff, is to invert the order both of God and nature, and to set a nation with its heels upwards. And yet I know it is the opinion of some, that women and children are fittest to make princes, as being of a more passive spirit; and therefore likeliest to steer by the adice of wise council: by reason they repose less stress and con∣fidence in their own prudence than men; in autho∣rity of which, the happy and prosperous reign of Queen Elizabeth is usually alledg'd; but whether without wrong to the more than masculine vigour of her spirit, and matchless quickness of parts, whereby she was, to a wonder, qualified for government, and reported rather to out-strip than come short of the more noble sex, I leave others to judge. But should we grant this assertion to have the countenance of reason, and that experience had also set to it its seal of confirmation; it is so far from being of any ad∣vantage to monarchy, by warding off the blow usually given by such as skirmish against it, with their rea∣sons sharpened with these inconveniences, that it gives the deepest wound to its reputation that could be desired, by asserting oligarchy, which by the ge∣neral consent of all times and ages, hath been ex∣ploded as one of the worst of tyrannies, to be the best of monarchies.

I have met with some, that plead much for the single person that should be only the name, without the thing; the office, without the power; the sha∣dow or image, without the substance; as if it were impossible for men, that are the masters and proprie∣tors of reason, to be knit together into civil society and peace for their own common interest and safety, without erecting either some gaudy thing to humour them, or some scare-crow to fright them into obedi∣ence; Nor do I know whose convenience would be Page  47herein consulted, except the lawyers, who (if like pack-horses trained up in one road) not able to change their accustomed pace or stile, it be prudence for the nation to hazard a relapse into tyranny, and again expose their lives and liberties to the will and lust of an arbitrary power, to set up a John of Oke, or Will of Stile, with infinite expence of blood and treasure, by reimposing the yoke so lately cast off, that this pack, &c. may not alter the stile and form of their writs, &c. I say wherefore the nation should be so over-indulgent to a corrupt interest of men, rather than to regulate and reform the forms of law, that, through the subtility of this generation, are be∣come rather snares than fences of our esates and properties, falls not within the precincts of my ap∣prehension.

Should we now unbowel and trace to its original this name, for which there have of late appeared so many advocates, I presume it would be found of as ill complexion as the word Tyrant was accounted among the Greeks; the English word king, being but the abbreviate of cunning, the usual epithet (as all men know) of knaves; and to speak truth, expe∣rience hath made good, though never so great a saint hath sate upon the throne, the devil and a bishop have ever stept into the office: For I am not of that fond opinion, that kings are not capable in their pri∣vate capacities of like virtues and qualifications with other men; but that, notwithstanding their accom∣plishments, how excellent, how bright, how orient soever are their personal virtues, they stand on slip∣pery places, and their dignities, their interests, their parasites, their flatterers, are snares too great for them to retain their integrity, and therefore that the ta∣lent of sovereign power is too great, too precious to be intrusted or deposited, in one man's hand, though an angel, left so great a temptation should endanger his fall, and make him apostate to a devil.

That kings are God's scourges, and given in wrath, Page  48we have the testimony of scripture. Nimrod was a great hunter, a mighty man, a great oppressor, and the first king or prince we read of; the first that invaded the liberty of the world, that usurped first authority, and presumed to exercise dominion over his brethren; the first that put a period to that golden age, wherein no other than paternal government was known; but though thus nigh the morning of time, God sent his scourge Nimrod as a just plague amongst the other nations of the earth; yet the people of God, the seed of Abraham, the children of Israel, were a long while after free, a free state, and enjoyed their native liberties till the time of Samuel, when they rebelled, and desired a king like the other nations, that they might be like the heathen whom God had cast out before them; which God construed no other than apostacy, and rejecting of him, than rebellion and high treason against his own divine majesty; and said, They have rejected me: And then tells them what would be the issue, fruit, and product thereof.

They should give away their liberty, and be sub∣jected to an arbitrary power, and become the slaves and vassals of their king, who should take their sons and their daughters to make them his servants, and send them forth to fight his battles; that is, to be the instruments of his pride and luxury, and the cham∣pions of his malice and ambition.

And then he should destroy their property, and take away their houses, and their vineyards, and give them to his servants. Thus the spirit of God gives the same description of a King as of what we call a Tyrant, a Nero, a Monster, as if they were all one, and it were essential to the nature of the office or dignity to be a beast of prey, a lviathan, an oppressor and de∣vourer of the people; which character hath been too easy to be read in the lives of most of the best kings, whose names are not taken off the file of memory.

Now as for those that would have a mock, a counterfeit, a limited king, a king and no king, an Page  49empty title, a bare name, vox & preterea nihil, or I know not what: they propose a remedy worse than the disease; for to divide the sovereignty, is to say a seene of blood, to sow the seed of a perpetual civil war, and intail ruin on ourselves and posterity: What is divided cannot stand; there will spring up perpetual jealousies, fears and animosities, which will cause intrenchings on each others authority, until the one have supplanted and overturned the other, this is to institute a civil war, anarchy and confusion, instead of a well ordered commonwealth or politic.

Having thus unmasked the true nature of mo∣narchy, which is no other than the mere gentle or civil expression of tyranny, I shall endeavour to ob∣viate some of the most plausible and strenuous argu∣ments, by whose strength and subtility it is endea∣voured to be obtruded, and our assents conciliated to the reception thereof.

One of the grand arguments whereby the betrayers of our liberty endeavour to decoy us into the iron yoke, we have so lately shaken of, is taken from our long use and custom to draw therein, which hath rendered slavery a second nature to us, and therefore endeavour to scare us from our liberty as a novel and dangerous thing; as if servitude were more natural to a nation than freedom, or any custom could utterly expunge nature: I am sure the former cannot reflect with the greater disgrace, or more derogate from the honour of our nation, that we should be of so coarse a metal, so base an alloy, of so spaniel-like couchant, slavish, and degenerate a spirit, than the other doth deviate from truth; but the worthy advocates of this cause, measure truth by the wicked standard of their base and corrupt designs, as they take altitude of all other mens spirits, though never so brave and eleva∣ted by the Jacob's staff of their own pitiful crouch∣ing, fawning humour.

It would waste more ink and paper than I am either willing, or have leisure to bestow, should I shew how much the state of our nation is altered, and into how Page  50great an unsuitableness we are of late travelled unto that government, this argument would plead precrip∣tion for.

But of what weight or trurh is it of, will easily appear to any that have taken notice of that, passage of our modern history of the last century, which c•••erns the gallant hero Sir Philip Sidney; who though born in that most unlucky juncture of time for prodcing brave spirits, when the nation tr•••led under the go∣vernment of a woman, was yet thought wordy of the Polish crown, and had an overture in order to his election thereto, had not his jealous mistress prevent∣ed; if, then, one born, under the inf••ences of a female government, and not of the highest rank of nobility, was thought si••to sway a scepter, of how great blasphemy against the honour of our nation, may they be thought guilty, who say, the r••-born people of England, after they have roke the more ancient Norman yoke, and the more modern of a lat∣ter, &c. are not 〈◊〉 to enjoy that liberty, that hath been the price of so much blood and treasure: But should we concede all the argument seem to beg, that our necks are used to the yoke, and we are be∣come familiar to servitude; shall ••e the ••fore will∣ingly suffer our ears to be bored to the posts of our new masters, and become slave for ever? Shall we court our bonds, and glory in that which is our shame? Shall we never learn to be free, and value liberty? Shall we never emancipate ourselves and posterity, but intail thraldom and s•• cry on them also, to all generations? For so long as we draw in this yoke, our condition is the 〈◊〉 with slaves; whatsoever is born unto us is a ves••l of our Lords; the fruit of our loins must drink of the same cup with us, draw in the same yoke, groan under the same tyranny and oppression we bequeath unto them: nay, who knows but their bondage may nrease, lie that of Israel's under the son or Solomon, whose little finger was heavier than his father's lins; for tyran∣nies usually exasperate and wax worse with continu∣ance: Page  51shall we now bequeath our children liberty or bonds, freedom or oppression? If we, who have had our necks worn with the yoke, and our backs bowed down with heavy burdens, are of a couchant slavish spirit, perhaps our posterity, if born in a freer air, and under the influences of a more benign govern∣ment, may prove of more generous and noble spirits, worthy of, and knowing how to prize their liberty. But without doubt, those brave and gallant souls, by the conduct of whose valour and prudence we have broken the iron yoke of arbitrary and exorbitant power; and by the good providence of God, redeemed the captivity of our nation, from the unrighteous bonds of its wicked oppressors, are worthy of, and know how to prize and improve what hath been pur∣chased with so much ••eat and oil, and will not in the end sell their birth-right for a mess of pottage, but leave an offspring, heirs of their own valour and gal∣lantry, that will, with the utmost peril of their lives and fortunes, desend and preserve what the labours of their ancestors hath purchased, with sore travel both of mind and body, and so transmit it intire to their posterity, through msny generations, till the consummation of all things, and that time shall be no more.

But for a farther and more fatisfactory answer, to silence this argument, we may consider how the scene is changed, and balance of lands altered since these last centuries; and by reason thereof, with how great difficulty monarchy hath made good its ground since Henry the Eighth's days, in which it first began most visible to decline, and hath ever since been post∣ing to its period.

For that wilful prince, by alienating the church revenues, quite altered the balance of lands that was the basis of his government, and thereby did that service unawares, that pulled up the stake of monar∣chy: for the church (which with all its preferments, was at the king's devotion and sole dispose) did at that time possess a third part of the lands and wealth Page  52of the whole nation: which being afterwards sold, and coming into the hands of private men, set up many thousands of families that had no dependence on the crown. Since which time, the number of freeholders being much encreased, the nation hath had a natural and strong vergency towards a com∣monwealth; which hath been much discovered in the spirit and complexion of our parliaments, of which the house of commons (heretofore an inconsiderable truckling kind of court, that was only summoned for the Prince to milk their purses, and let the peo∣ple blood in the silver vein) grew now more peremp∣tory, and began to give check to their princes exor∣bitances; insomuch, that Queen Elizabeth was put to her courtship to retain them in allegiance; as after∣wards King James, to a thousand shifts and juggles: who, notwithstanding all his King-craft and cunning, in which he so much gloried, and boasted himself so great a master, was scarce able, with much juggling and dissimulation, to divert the storm from falling on his own head, which afterward rained so much blood and vengeance on his son and posterity, to the utter ruin and confusion of his family.

To conclude therefore this particular, it being a maxim of truth, placed beyond all hazard of contra∣diction, that no government can be fixed in this nation, but according to the balance of land. That Prince that is not able, neither by his own nor the public revenue, in some measure to counterpoise, if not over balance the greater part of the people, must necessarily be tenant at will for the crown he wears: for they that are the proprietors of the land and wealth of any nation, will with ease be able, by that magnetism, to draw the greatest number of abettors to their side, and so to gild over their pretensions, as to render them current with the people, and so in the end, give law to the rest of their brethren: Therefore, where there is one proprietor or landlord, as in Turkey, there is absolute monarchy; where a few, aristocracy, &c.

Now, since the crown lands, and church lands of Page  53this nation are sold, what other prop or pillar of securi∣ty is left for the throne of a prince to rest upon, ex∣cept that of a mercenary army, lies not within view of my apprehensions; and then how wholesome or safe advice the re-establishing of monarchy is to this nation, I leave all men (that have not altogether ab∣jured their reason and conscience, to judge and deter∣mine.

As for those poetical, if not prophane flourishes, wherewith orators and poets, the constant parasites of princes, use to gild over monarchy, pretending it the most natural and rational of all other forms of government, and that whose pattern was first shown in the mount, or rather let down from heaven, para∣leling it with God's regimen of the universe, which is alledged as its prototype first exemplar; and there∣fore to have something more of a divine right and character impressed upon it than any other, &c.

These, I say, are such trite, bald, and slight rea∣sonings, that they do not merit so much respect as to receive an answer; for may we not as well by this loose and allusive way of arguing, borrow a pattern from heaven for the triumvirate, that Augustus, Le∣pidus, and Mare Antony sometime imposed on Rome.

Doth it not as well quadrate with the sacred Trinity, by the triple sceptred of whose divine providence the empire of the world is administered, as by their's sometime that of the Romans? Will any one therefore be so bold as to say, that it was the most natural and rational government, and founded by no less than a di∣vine right, according to its pattern and archetype in the heavens! notwithstanding the brand of the blackest and bloodiest tyranny Rome ever saw hath been set thereon, by the universal consent of all historians.

Or may we not, considering the pride, ambition, rapine, extortion, injury and oppression, that usually crowd into the courts of the best princes, with as much or more reason parallel absolute monarchy, with that of the prince of darkness, in which there is no Tri∣nity, as in the other; and therefore more exactly Page  54quadrate to the absoluteness our proud monarchs so much endeavour to obtain?

I confess, could we have a prince to whom majesty might be atributed, without prophane hyperboles, that was a true vicar or lieutenant of God, that was not subject to the passions and infirmities, much less the vices and monstrosities of human nature, that could neither be imposed on by deceit, nor abused by flattery, whom the passions neither of fear nor affection, could warp to the least declivity, from what is right and honest; whose reason could never be biassed by any private interest or base respect, to decline the paths of justice and equity, but would manage the reins of his power with a like constan∣cy and steadiness, as by the hand of Providence the helm of the universe is steered: I should then become an advocate of monarchy, and acknowledge it to have the impress of divinity, and bear the character and inscription of God upon it, to be the best and most absolute form of government, and a true copy of its divine original: but till security be given for such a righteous administration, I desire to be excused from being a pander to ambition, or the advocate of ty∣ranny, as having learnt, It is not good for man to be alone, especially on the high and slippery places, where the strongest heads are apt to wax giddy; but, in the multitude of counsellors there is safety: and methinks, the very dialect of princes in the plural number (what∣ever of state or majesty may be pretended) is a witness of, and doth clearly speak the unnaturalness of such exorbitant monopolies of power, and that though they act in a single capacity, are willing to speak like a commonwealth.

Most of the other arguments, of which the advo∣cates of tyranny make use, are drawn from the pre∣tended advantages of that government, above and be∣yond others in respect of secrecy, celerity, unanimity, and the like, which though conveniencies, yet being far too light to counterpoise and balance the other in commodities, together with the great charge and ex∣cise Page  55they are rated at, require no other answer, nor shall I waste more time and ink upon them.

Having thus passed the pikes of the sharpest argu∣ments, that are usually raised in defence of the odd thing called a single person, I shall only speak a word or two to that is founded on the single command, that in times of war and eminent danger, when the gates of Janus's temple are set open, is committed to one man, it being a received maxim, that reason hath always conceded an advantage to the absolute jurisdiction of a single person in the field, prescribing to that end but one general to an army, for fear of divisions upon contrary counsels and commands.

To which may be replied, notwithstanding ge∣nerals are not taken upon trust, as kings in successive monarchies, but upon the test of experience, and proved sufficiency manifested in former services; yet if it seem expedient to the commonwealth, there may be a rotation in that office as well as others, as was anci∣ently in the Roman republic, whose armies were led forth by their annual successive consuls, and that with great success and victory.

But the expedient our present parliament hath found out by commission, doth so fully answer this objection that I need say no more unto it; for without doubt, it is the interest of a free state to have all the people so trained up in military discipline, and made fami∣liar with arms, that he may not be thought arrived at the just accomplishments of a gentleman, that is not able to lead an army in the field, it being among the Romans no absurd apostrophe to leave the plough∣tail, to head an army, or, vice versa, when their military employments were accomplished: how much then may they be thought to fall short of the accomplishments of a gentleman, that know not how to manage the conduct of a troop of horse, as I fear, too many of our gentry, upon a due scrutiny would be found; who, notwithstanding all their great pre∣tences to be accounted armigeri, or esquires, are scarce stout enough to discharge a pistol, or were Page  56ever militant beyond the borders of their ladies carpets.

I shall now sound a retreat to the further progress of my pen on this theme, lest I should seem too much to triumph over a baffled and prostrate enemy, it being my desire to use victory with like modera∣tion, I desire to bear a foil, conquest or captivity: therefore, fince by the good providence of God, together with the gallant conduct of the no less pru∣dent than valiant assertors of our native rights and liberties, we are re-instated in the possession of our birth-rights, I shall attempt the discovery of those rocks and shelves, on which in the late night of apos∣tacy we split our liberties, and endanger the utter ruin and shipwreck of our lives and fortunes, in the dangerous sea of an exorbitant and unlimited power; and thereby strike some sparks of light for the future better steering of the commonwealth, in whose bot∣tom, as all our lives and felicities are adventured, we are all concerned to endeavour its being brought into a safe port and harbour.

The work then of our present pilots, that sit at the stern, and manage the conduct of our affairs, is, to endeavour the commonwealth may be so equally ba∣lanced, as it may neither have propensity to a second relapse into monarchy, as of late; or oligarchy, which is worse: nor yet into anarchy, the worst of all three: But to settle a free-state upon such just and righteous foundations as cannot be moved, that may be a strong rampire of defence, not only to our civil liberties, as men, from the future enchroachment of tyranny, or inundation of exorbitant power; but also of security to our spiritual liberties, as Christians, from the invasion of those that desire to domineer and lord it over the consciences of their brethren: both which seem so linked and twisted to each other, that what conduces to the security of one, hath no smail tendency to the establishing of the other also, and do commonly so inseparable accompany each other, that wheresoever there is a free-state, or equal Page  57commonwealth, liberty of conscience is inviolably preserved, together with convenient and inoffensive latitude in toleration of religions, as in Holland, Venice, &c.

Now, for the better securing of these, we are to take notice of what persons or things are most incon∣sistent with, and have greatest enmity to, the interest of a free-state or equal commonwealth.

For discovery of which, as I know it a crime of presumption unpardonable, for one seated in the vale of a private condition, to pretend a fairer prospect into the interest of state, than those Providence hath placed in the watch-towers, and on the pinnacles of power; yet by reason a by-stander may be allowed to discern something of the game; and he that is out of play, to shew the ground to a bowler; and one that stands below may better know what props the foundation rests upon, than he that is on the top of the tower: and it being the duty of every one to cast in his mite to the vaster treasures of their know∣ledge, to whom Providence hath committed the conduct of our affairs, I am bold, being partly thereto encouraged by that great candour where∣with I observe the like tribute of zealous and faithful hearts are already received, to tender what in my apprehension may have a tendency to a future settlement and security. I confess, were we at this time bowed down under the govern∣ment of a monarch, in whose court every coun∣sellor of state is to be taken on an implicit faith to enjoy by his prince's patent and favour, a monopoly of reason as well as honour; and that his understand∣ing is no less elevated than according to the propor∣tion his titles and fortunes swell above the tide of other mens: I might justly be accounted absurd to offer any thing of this nature, as knowing with what scorn and contempt so rash an adventure would be encountered.

But in a free state, where the greatest senators are not ashamed to confer with the meanest persons, I am Page  58not afraid to put myself into the crowd of those that make addresses of this nature: wherefore, to conclude this parenthesis, and resume the thread of our dis∣course, there are nor, as I presume, past two or three sorts of persons, whose interests run counter to, or, indeed are not twisted and wound up in the same bot∣ton with that of a free state, or at least in the spin∣ning out of a few years, might not be interwoven therewith; and those are, the Lawyer, the Divine, and Hereditary Nobility; as for the Cavalier and Courtier, I question not but a little time would breathe out their antipathy, and warp their affections to a perfect compliance, and closing with an equal commonwealth.

Discontent productive of Human Happiness and the Elevation of the Species.

From Young's Spirit of Athens.

WHY are we tenacious of liberty, but because it gives an open field to that exertion of our minds or bodies, whence alone pleasure can proceed? —whether they are employed in tracking a wild beast, or in exploring a system, it is the same plea∣sure; and restriction to the man who hath once tasted it, is surely worse than death.

The discontented spirit of mankind, so often and so much deprecated by every trifler in metaphysics, is then found to be consistent with their happiness, and necessary to their improvement. Divinely is it thus instituted, that the activity of our faculties should constitute our happiness, whilst what blesses the indi∣vidual, enriches the species; and the pursuit which gives pleasure to each, tends to some acquisition pro∣ductive of further distinctions to humanity, and eli∣vating it more and more, in the system in which it makes a part.

Page  59

AN ODE, IN IMITATION OF ALCAEUS.

WHAT constitutes a State?
Not high-rais'd battlement, or labour'd mound,
Thick wall, or moated gate;
Not cities proud with spires, and turrets crown'd;
Where, laughing at the storm, rich navies ride;
Not starr'd and spangled courts,
Where low-bred baseness wafts perfume to pride;
No:—MEN, high-minded MEN,
With pow'rs as far above dull brutes endu'd,
In sorest, brake, or den,
As beasts excel cold rocks and brambles rude;
Men, who their duties know,
But know their rights, and, knowing, dare maintain,
Prevent the long-aim'd blow,
And crush the tyrant while they rend the chain:
These constitute a State,
And sov'reign LAW, that State's collected will,
O'er thrones and globes elate
Sits Empress, crowning good, repressing ill;
Smit by her sacred frown
The fiend Discrection like a vapour sinks,
And e'en the all-dazzling Crown
Hides his faint rays, and at her bidding shrinks,
Such was this heav'n-lov'd isle,
That Lesbos fairer and the Cretan shore!
No more shall freedom smile?
Shall Britons languish, and be MEN no more?
Since all must life resign,
Those sweet rewards, which decorate the brave,
'Tis folly to decline,
And steal inglorious to the silent grave.
Page  60

Every Man is born with an imprescriptible Claim to a Portion of the Elements.

From Barlow's Advice to the Privileged Orders.

IT is a truth, I believe, not to be called in question, that every man is born with an imprescriptible claim to a portion of the elements, which portion is termed his birth-right. Society may vary this right, as to its form, but never can destroy it in sub∣stance. She has no controul over the man till he is born; and the right being born with him, and being necessary to his existence, she can no more annihilate the one than the other, though she has the power of new-modelling both. But on coming into the world, he finds that the ground which nature had promised him is taken up, and in the occupancy of others; society has changed the form of his birth-right; the general stock of elements, from which the lives of men are to be supported, has undergone a new modi∣fication; and his portion among the rest. He is told, that he cannot claim it in its present form, as an in∣dependent inheritance; that he must draw on the stock of society, instead of the stock of nature; that he is banished from the mother and must cleave to the nurse. In this unexpected occurrence he is un∣prepared to act; but knowledge is a part of the stock of society: and an indispensible part to be allotted to the portion of the claimant, is instruction relative to the new arrangement of natural right. To with∣hold this instruction, therefore, would be not merely the omission of a duty, but the commission of a crime; and society in this case would sin against the man, before the man could sin against society.

I should hope to meet the assent of all unprejudiced readers, in carrying this idea still further. In cases where a person is born of poor parents, or finds himself brought into the community of men, without the means of sub∣sistence, society is bound in duty to furnish him with the means. She ought not only to instruct him in the arti∣ficial laws by which property is secured, but in the arti∣ficial industry by which it is obtained. She is bound in Page  61justice as well as policy, to give him some art or trade. For the reason of his incapacity is, that she has usurped his birth-right; and this restoring it to him in another form, more convenient to both parties. The failure of society in this branch of her duty, is the occasion of much the greater part of the evils that call for criminal jurisprudence. The indi∣vidual feels that he is robbed of his natural right; he cannot bring his process to reclaim it from the great community by which he is overpowered; he there∣fore feels authorized in reprisal; in taking another's goods to replace his own. And it must be confessed, that in numberless instances the conduct of society justifies him in this proceeding, she has seized his pro∣perty and commenced the war against him.

Some, who perceive these truths, say that it is unsafe for society to publish them; but I say it is unsafe not to publish them. For the party from which the mischief is expected to arise, has the knowledge of them already, and has acted upon them in all ages. It is the wise who are ignorant of these things, and not the foolish. They are truths of na∣ture; and in them the teachers of mankind are the only party that remains to be taught: It is a subject on which the logic of indigence is much clearer than that of opulence. The latter reasons from contri∣vance, the former from feeling; and God has not endowed us with false feelings, in things that so weightily concern our happiness.

None can deny that the obligation is much stronger on me to support my life, than to support the claim that my neighbour has to his property. Nature commands the first, society the second:—In one I obey the laws of God, which are universal and eter∣nal; in the other the laws of man, which are local and temporary.

It has been the folly of old governments to begin every thing at the wrong end, and to erect their in∣stitutions on an inversion of principle. This is more Page  62sadly the case in their systems of jurisprudence, than is commonly imagined. Compelling justice is always mistaken for rendering justice. But this important branch of administration consists not merely in com∣pelling men to be just to each other, and individuals to society,—this is not the whole, nor is it the prin∣cipal part, nor even the beginning, of the operation. The source of power is said to be the source of justice; but it does not answer this description, as long as it contents itself with compulsion. Justice must begin by flowing from its source; and the first, as well as the most important object is, to open its channels from society to all the individual members. This part of the administration being well devised and diligently executed, the other parts would lessen away by de∣grees to matters of inferior consideration.

It is an undoubted truth, that our duty is insepa∣rably connected with our happiness; and why should we despair of convincing every member of society of a truth so important for him to know? Should any person object, by saying, that nothing like this has ever been tried. Society has hitherto been curst with governments whose existence depended on the ex∣tinction of truth. Every moral light has been smo∣thered under the bushel of perpetual imposition; from whence it emits but faint and glimmering rays, al∣ways insufficient to form any luminous system on any of the civil concerns of men. But these covers are crumbling to the dust, with the governments which they support; and the probability becomes more ap∣parent, the more it is considered, that society is capable of curing all the evils to which it has given birth.

Page  63

HOW TO CONSTITUTE A FREE GOVERN∣MENT.

From CATO'S LETTERS.

THE only Secret in forming a Free Government, is to make the interests of the Governors and of the Governed the same, as far as human policy can contrive. Liberty cannot be preserved any other way. Men have long found, from the weakness and depravity of themselves and one another, that most men will act for interest against duty, as often as they dare. So that to engage them to their duty, interest must be linked to the observance of it, and danger to the breach of it. Personal advantages and security, must be the rewards of duty and obedience; and dis∣grace, torture, and death, the punishment of treach∣ery and corruption.

Human wisdom has yet found out but one certain expedient to effect this; and that is, to have the con∣cerns of all directed by all, as far as possibly can be: and where the persons interested are too numerous, or live too distant to meet together on all emergencies, they must moderate necessity by prudence, and act by deputies whose interest is the same with their own, and whose property is so intermingled with theirs, and so engaged upon the same bottom, that princi∣pals and deputies must stand and fall together. When the deputies thus act for their own interest, by acting for the interest of their principals; when they can make no law but what they themselves, and their posterity, must be subject to; when they can give no money, but what they must pay their share of; when they can do no mischief, but what must fall upon their own heads in common with their countrymen; their principals may then expect good laws, little mischief, and much frugality.

Here therefore lies the great point of necessity and care in forming the constitution, that the persons en∣trusted Page  64and representing, shall either never have an interest detached from the persons entrusting and re∣presented, or never the means to pursue it. Now to compass this great point effectually, no other way is left but one of these two, or rather both, namely, to make the deputies so numerous, that there may be no possibility of corrupting the majority; or, by changing them so often, that there is no sufficient time to corrupt them, and to carry the ends of that corruption. The people may be very sure, that the major part of their deputies being honest will keep the rest so; and that they will all be honest, when they have no temptations to be knaves.

The glorious Prospect of better Times, which are fast approaching.

From The Critic Philosopher.

He hath shewed strength with his arm: he hath SCAT∣TERED the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath PUT DOWN the mighty from their seats, and EXALTED them of LOW degree. He hath FILLED the HUNGRY with good things, and the RICH he hath sent EMPTY AWAY.
Luke i. ver. 51.

THE Gothic pride of absurd prejudices, cemented by the ignorance and weakness of our fore∣fathers, must fall to the ground; and on its ruin must be raised the immortal temple of reason, of liberty, of justice! At the sight of this glorious fabric, des∣potism will shudder, tyranny shall be struck dumb; irritated pride must murmur; unmasked avidity shall be confounded; and philosophy, smiling at her great work, will secretly applaud herself for the trophy thus erected to her honour. The RIGHTS OF MAN, engraved by nature upon his heart, in indelible cha∣racters, restored to their original perfection: that primitive equality on which all were formed, must Page  65take place of artificial inequality effected by self-created nobility, be placed on a proper footing, and change its nature, objects, and pretensions; the cler∣gy must be reformed and brought back to that sim∣ple, evangelical modesty, that most beautiful orna∣ment, which a proud and worldy spirit has long dis∣figured.

The rich must be convinced, that while they live sumptuously, and while the POOR are fed with a few of the scanty crumbs which fall from their table, they act quite contrary to the tenor of that gospel, which they say they believe. It is not in nature or reason, that one man should destroy twenty thousand a year, and another shuld be left without the common ne∣cessaries of life: —No, every creature which nature hath formed with a mouth and digestive powers, has an equal right to participate of her blessings.

To conclude, we trust that the glorious fabric of freedom, reared up, as it were, by the hand of Oni∣potence, will soon appear. A fabric that will stand fir and unhaken, as being fenced round with bar∣riers, which will mock the dark designs of treachery, and bid defiance to the impotent efforts of despo∣tism and corruption.

Mr. Burke's tyrannical system of politics, and confined ideas of liberty, published in his late pamph∣let, must fall to the ground; and every scheme, or plan, made use of to oppress the human race, must be destroyed. Wealth and property must be wrested from the hands of rapacity and indolence, and di∣vided amongst mankind at large, in proportion as they merit it. Then will those of useful invigorated industry shine as useful members of the community. 'Tis true, nations like individuals seem subject to in∣fatuation, and while they are under its influence, they submit to treatment which would shock them, if they were in their proper senses. Men can assign no other reason for bearing oppression, than that they bore it before.—The world is grown old in error, I grant, but it should not on that account preclude re∣form. Page  66Notwithstanding its great age, society is hardly yet got beyond its first elements! Legisla∣tors have hitherto only drawn lines or boundaries to confine mankind, instead of tracing plans to make them happy. In all their general institutions, they seem to have been ignorant that man is a being formed for love and friendship: they have rather considered him as in a state of perpetual warfare with his fellow-creatures. Hence it is, that the systems of all governments, and the spirit of their laws, have been directed rather to separate than to unite the different members of society; by granting peculiar privileges to some; by restraining others; by render∣ing the meltitude passive, and giving activity and power only to a few; by occasioning superabundance in palaces, and famine in the peasant's cot; by coun∣teracting, in short, the designs of God and nature, in the impartial diffusion of their blessings.

Laws, founded upon such unnatural principles, have kept the whole machine of society in a state of perpetual discord and distraction. They have hinder∣ed the rich from becoming humane, by giving a sanction to their insolent luxuries. They have rob∣bed the poor of every right, even of permission to utter their complaints: they have chained down ge∣nius; clipped the wings of thought; and chilled, with freezing pressure the warm sallies of sensibility: —By treating man as a ferocious animal, those laws have made him so in reality. They made him jea∣lous of his fellow-creatures: they erected a wall of prejudice and division between one people and ano∣ther: their voice, like that of demons; crying out to the inhabitants of every country, be guarded against strangers and foreigners, and look upon them as your natural enemies.—By these means, a sort of constant hostility has been kept up in the universe, man being at war with man, nation with nation, and empire with empire!

We have a book, which we call our guide to eter∣nal happiness; it teacheth us, that all the human Page  67race descended from one man, and that we are all brethren; yet we are, by our own laws, daily en∣acting a specific distinction, and giving one part of us a statute authority to commit rapine and plunder the other. We believe that a divine prophet came down, exerted himself, and died for the redemption of all nations from misery and punishment; and while we sacrifice to him for this unparalelled love, we overwhelm one another with the very evils, which he, by his examples and sufferings, taught us to avoid.

THE ADVANTAGES OF FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

From THE CANDID PHILOSOPHER.

EVERY one will allow, that freedom of thought ought not, and cannot be restrained, however freedom of speech may be so. The judge observed very justly to a satirical author, that the law forbade him to call him rogue. "I know it, my lord," re∣plied as justly the arch wag; "but the law does not forbid my thinking your lordship one."

Since, then, freedom of thought cannot be taken from a man, and is confessedly useful, let us briefly consider the advantages of Freedom of Speech.

And here a most excellent author occurs to me, and I shall give his sentiments on the subject, as nearly as I can remember, they being perfectly agreeable to my own:—

The passions are not to be extinguished but with life: To forbid, therefore, people to speak, is to for∣bid them to feel.—The more men express of their hate and resentment, perhaps the less they retain; and sometimes they vent the whole that way; but these passions, where they are smothered, will be apt to fester, to grow venomous, and to discharge them∣selves Page  68by a more dangerous organ than the mouth; even by an armed and vindictive hard. Less danger∣ous is a railing mouth than an heart filled with bit∣terness and curses; and more terrible to a prince ought to be the secret execrations of his people than their open revilings, or than even the assaults of his enemies. In truth, where no liberty is allowed to speak of governors, besides that of praising them, their praises will be little regarded. Their tender∣ness and aversion to have their conduct examined will be 〈◊〉 to prompt people to think their conduct guilty or 〈◊〉; to suspect their management and designs to be worse tha perhaps they are; and to become turbulent and seditious, rather than be forced to be silent,

THE MARSEILLES MARCH, OR HYMN.

YE sons of France! awake to glory,
Hark! hark! what myriads bid you rise!
Your children, wives, and grandsires hoary,
Behold their tears, and hear their cries.
Shall hateful tyrants, mischief breeding,
With hireling hosts a ruffian band,
Affright and desolate the land,
While peace and liberty lie bleeding!
To arms, to arms, ye brave,
Th' avenging sword unsheath;
March on, march on, all hearts resolv'd
On victory or death.
Now, now the dang'rous storm is rolling,
Which treach'rous kings, confed'rate, raise:
The dogs of war, let loose, are howling,
And so! our fields and cities blaze.
And shall we basely view the ruin,
Whle lawless force, with guilty stride,
Spread desolation far and wide,
With crimes and blood his hands embruing?
To arms, to arms, ye brave, &c.
Page  69
With luxury and pride surrounded,
The vile insatiate despots dare,
Their thirst of power and gold unbounded,
To mete and vend the light and air.
Like beasts of burthen would they load us,
Like Gods would bid their slaves adore;
But man is man, and who is more?
Then shall they longer lash and goad us?
To arms, to arms, ye brave, &c.
O Liberty! can man resign thee,
Once having felt thy gen'rous flame!
Can dungeons, bolts and bars confine thee,
Or whips thy noble spirit tame!
Too long the world has wept bewailing,
That falsehood's dagger tyrants wield;
But Freedom is our sword and shield,
And all their arts are unavailing.
To arms, to arms, ye brave, &c.

Translation of an Extract from a late Publication, intituled, Les Ruines, by M. De Volney, Member of the late Constitutive National Assembly of France, and author of "Travels in Syria and Egypt."

[This book is supposed to be written on the Ruins of Palmyra, where a Spectre, or Genius, appears to the Author, and after taking him up into the Heavens, shews him below, our Hemisphere: ac∣counts for past, and foretels many future Revo∣lutions; after which the work thus proceeds:]

SCARCE had the genius finished these words, be∣fore an immense noise was heard towards the west, when that way directing my attention, I perceived within the extremity of the Mediterranean, within the domains of one of the nations of Europe, a pro∣digious movement, such as when, in the bosom of a Page  70vast city, a violent sedition breaking out in all its parts, one sees an innumerable people agitated and rushing like torrents into the streets and public places. And my ears, struck with shouts which rent the skie, distinguished at intervals these phrases.

"What is then this prodigy? What is this cruel and mysterious scourge? We are a numerous nation, yet we want hands! We have an excellent soil, and we want necessaries! We are active, laborious, and we live in indigence! We pay enormous taxes, and yet we are told they are not sufficient! We are at peace abroad, and neither our persons nor our pro∣perty are in safety at home! What is then the con∣cealed enemy which devours us?"

And certain voices, issuing from the bosom of the multitude, answered, "Erect a distinct standard, around which let all those assemble who, by useful labours, support and nourish society; and you will then discover the enemy which consumes you."

And the standard being raised, the nation was all at once divided into two bodies, unequal, and of an aspect in all respects different from each other: the one innumerable and comparatively almost total, presented in the general poverty of their apparel, and in the meagre tanned air of their countenance, ap∣pearances of misery and labour; the small group, an inconsiderable fraction, presented in all the splen∣dour of clothes, bedaubed with gold and silver, and in the plumpness of their faces, symptoms of leisure and abundance. And, considering these men more attentively, I perceived that the great body was com∣posed of labourers, of arizans, of shopkeepers, of all the professions useful to society; and that in the small group there were only priests of the higher orders, financiers, nobles, great officers of armies: in a word, nothing but the civil, military, and reli∣gious agents of government.

After these two bodies had, in the presence of each other, face to face, considered one another with astonishment, I saw indignation and rage spring Page  71up on the one hand, and a kind of fear and dismay on the other; when the great body said to the small one —.

"Why have you separated from us? Are you not then o〈◊〉 number?"

"N," answered the small group, "ye are but the people, we are a different kind of beings; we are of a distinguished class; who have our laws, our cus∣toms, our rights pecular to ourselves."

People. And what business do you follow in our society?

Distinguished Class. None;—we are not made to work.

People. How then have you acquired your riches?

Distinguished Class. By taking ••e trouble to go∣vern you.

People. Really! Let us see what it is you call government? We toil and sweat, and you enjoy; we produce, and you dissipate:—Distinguished Class, who are not the people, form a separate nation, if you please, and take the trouble to govern your∣selves.

Whereupon the small group, deliberating on the new case, a few of the most enlightened of them said—"Let us join ourselves again to the people, and share with them their burdens and their occupa∣tions, for they are men as well as ourselves;" but the rest said, "No, it would be a shame, it would be infamous to confound ourselves with the vulgar; they are made to serve us; we are men of a different race."

And the Civil Governors said, "This people is mild, and naturally servile, let us speak to them of the king and of the law, and they will presently re-enter into their duty. People! The king wills it, the sovereign ordains it."

People. The king can only will the good of the people; the sovereign can only ordain according to the law.

Page  72Civil Governors. The law enacts that ye be sub∣missive.

People. The law is the general will, and we will a new order.

Civil Governors. You will be a rebellious people.

People. Nations cannot revolt; tyrants are the only rebels.

Civil Governors. The king is with us, and he commands you to submit.

People. The kingly office originates in the people who elect one of themselves to execute it for the general good; kings, therefore, are essentially indi∣visible from their nations. The king of our's then cannot be with you; you only possess his phantom.

And the Military Governors stepping forward said. "The people are timid, let us menace them; they only obey force. Soldiers, chastise this insolent rabble!

People. Soldiers! you are of our own blood; Will you strike your brothers? If the people perish, who will maintain the army?

And the soldiers, grounding their arms, said to their chiefs, we are also the people, we are the ene∣mies of—

Whereupon, the Ecclesiastical Governors said— "There is now but one resource left; the people are superstitious; we must frighten them with the names of God and of religion.

Our dearly beloved brethren, our children—God has appointed us to govern you.

People. Produce to us your heavenly powers.

Priests. You must have faith: reason will lead you astray.

People. Do you govern then without reason?

Priests. God ordains peace. Religion prscribes obedience.

People. Peace pre-supposes justice. Obedience has a right to know the law it bows to.

Priests. Man is only born into this world to suffer.

Page  73People. Do you then set us the example.

Priests. Will you live without Gods, and without kings?

People. We will live without tyrants, without impostors.

Priests. Meditators, interceders are necessary to you.

People. Meditators between us and God, between us and kings! Courtiers and priests, your services cost us too dear: we will henceforward treat for ourselves immediately with the principals.

And hereupon the small group said, "We are undone: the multitude are enlightened.

And the people answered, You are saved; for in∣asmuch as we are enlightened, we will not abuse our power; we wish for nothing beyond our rights. We have resentments, but we forget them: We were slaves, we might command, and retort upon you your own principles: we will only be free: we are so!

This dialogue between the people, and the idle classes, is the analysis of all society. All the vices▪ all the political disorders, are deducible from this source; Men who do nothing, and who devour the substance of others; men who arrogate to them∣selves particular rights, exclusive privileges of rich∣es and idleness; such men are the source and defi∣nition of all the abuses which exist among all nati∣ons. Compare the Mamloucks of Egypt, the nobles of Europe, the Nairs of India, the Emirs of Arabia, the Patricians of Rome, the Christian Priests, the Imans, the Bramins, the Bonzes, the Lamas, &c. you will always find the same results,

Idle men living at the expence of those who work.

Page  74

ON THE MINISTRY OR CLERGY: BY THE AUTHOR OF A PLEA FOR A COM∣MONWEALTH.

IT being the method of Heaven, for judgment to begin at the house of God. I shall first speak to the reformation of the public ministry or national cler∣gy, so far as they seem prompted by their interest to run counter to that of a commonwealth; and though I know (notwithstanding the complexion of their coat, which seems, or at least ought to pro∣mise greater moderation) it is no less dangerous to meddle, or in the least exasperate this generation of men, than to puddle in a hornets nest, or en∣counter a bear robbed of her whelps: yet my con∣science bearing me witness, I have neither malice to their persons, nor envy their preferments: I shall not forbear to give in my testimony against the cor∣rupt interest and principles wherewith they are leavened: where by the way, I must profess myself unsatisfied of what ground or foundation may (since the Jewish priesthood was abolished) be found in scripture, for that distinction between the laity and clergy, which custom hath introduced into most Christian commonwealths: my zeal and cha∣rity being apt to prompt me to a like wish with that of Moses, That all the Lords people were prophets: or rather, to think all the Lord's people are holy, and to be accounted a royal priesthood to God, Nor can I persuade myself learning is so necessary a qualifi∣cation for teaching the gospel, as some would make us believe, having observed our Saviour altogether rejected the wisdom of man, and made not use 〈◊〉 the learned scribes, or doctors of the law, but sim∣ple and illiterate fishermen, to be the first heralds of peace unto the world, to proclaim goodwill to the children of men, to be the first evangelists, and messengers of the glad tidings of salvation: and in∣deed Page  75the introduction of learned rabbies into the church of Christ, and blending divinity with the learning of the gentiles, seems to run counter to the whole design of the gospel, which is by the foolishness of preaching, to confound the wisdom of the world. Certainly the sword of God's spirit will be able to do its work, though not managed by the skil∣ful hand of an artist, or master of fence, that hath been brought up in the polemicks and digladiations of human literature, vain philosophy, or sophistry of the schools,

Nor do I find that the apostles, and those sent forth by Christ, to be the Catholic Bishops of the whole earth, and to teach all nations, did assume unto themselves any distinction of garb, colour, or habits, from the est of Christ's flock; and I have read of some that were censured in the primitive times, or first centuries, for wearing large black cloaks; for what is this but to bring back those jewish types and shadows, to cloud and obscure the brightness of the Gospel's dispensation, that were long since dispelled and abrogated by the rising of the Sun of righteousness upon the world? For as one who hath lately well observed, What is the canonical girdle, and formality of doctors wearing boots, but as types and allusions to those places, of having their loins, girt, and their feet shod with the preparation of the gospel, &c?

Nor do I read that they who were called to the ministry, did look upon that as a writ of case, or sufficient warrant to quit their other particular callings, trades, and vocations; but that Paul wrought with his hands, that he might not become burdensome; and it is generally presumed our Sa∣viour wrought at his father's trade; not that I would not have those that minister in spiritual things, reap of other's carnal; but that it seems more ac∣cording to the rule and president of the gospel, that they should be content with what voluntary con∣tribution, Page  76God shall move the people's hearts unto, than by force and rigour of law exact a maintenance.

And when I find the apostle saluting the church in Caesar's family, I am prompted to wish, that all our houses were chapels unto the Lord, and that our families (like that of Caesar's) contained a church within them. I am sure it is no new ob∣servation, that the greatest heat and zeal of religion hath been always found in conventicles and private meetings; which suggests unto my thoughts, no small ground of suspicion, that our parochial churches, bells, together with the whole order, pomp, method, and formality of our national cler∣gy, and public worship, stands upon no other foundation than that of human invention, which by the stream of corrupt times, have been carried beyond the pattern and president of the primitive ages, and become very unlike and dissonant to the examplar Christ and his apostles left us.

Nor am I satisfied, if the generality of men are uncapable of receiving the truth and power of godliness, whether the endeavours of giving all men a tincture of religion, and forcing them into the garb and livery of an outward profession, which is the great design of, and plea for a national clergy be more acceptable unto God than morality. I know under the law, God had a peculiar people, that were picked and culled (as it were) from the dross and rubbish of the rest of mankind, that were to be built up in an outward profession, and nati∣onal way of public worship, adorned with many ceremonies, together with much pomp, and out∣ward splendour, but whether religion be not now under the gospel, a more inward, refined, spiritual and less visible thing. I humbly submit to serious consideration. And if I am herein mistaken (for I pretend not to infallibility) I should be thankful to any, God shall be pleased to make use of as in∣struments to better inform me; for I would wil∣lingly see and know my errors.

Page  77But if it be here objected, that the primitive times were times of persecution, in which the church was (as it were) under hatches, and chris∣tianity in its infancy, and the professors thereof forced to hide themselves in holes of the rocks, and caves of the earth; but now, having gained ground upon the world, and being in better plight, and since it is come up out of Egypt from the house of bondage, from under the pressures, persecutions, afflictions, and burdens of the heathenish task-mas∣ters, under which it formerly groaned, ought ac∣cording to the example of the Israelites, be adorn∣ed with the spoils of the heathen, &c.

I answer, that as the kingdom of God comes not with observation, so it consists not in any outward pomp and splendour. Its said, the king's daughter (or spouse of Christ) is all glorious within; and by how much the more ground christianity hath gain∣ed upon the world, by so much the less need doth it now stand of the wisdom and learning of men to commend and propagate it, than when it was to encounter with so great opposition, and such po¦tent antagonists, as under the heathen emperors it met withal. And if the truth did then under all those disadvantages not only make good its ground but so much gained upon the world, when it had few other champions than poor fishermen, and illiterate mechanics, how much less need it now fear brow-beating, when the power of God hath subdued so many nations to the knowledge and obedience of his truth, and hath made princes of the earth bow unto the scepter of his Son?

Whether the nation is yet willing to part with their calves they have so long worshipped, I know not, but I am sure it hath pleased God to give them a great discovery of the corruption, pride, ambition and flattery of this sort of men; how willing they could be to reap their own profit, though sown in, and springing from the ruin of the nation's liberty Page  78and felicity; how willingly they could sell their brethren slaves into the hands of tyranny and op∣pression, to purchase to themselves dominion and lordship.

THE DESIRE OF GLORY NATURALLY GENERATED IN REPUBLICS.

FROM THE PERSIAN LETTERS

THE sanctuary of honour, reputation, and vir∣tue; seems to be placed in republics, and in those states where a man may with safety pro∣nounce the word, country. At Rome, Athens, and Sparta, honour was the only reward for the most signal services. A crown of oak-leaves, or laurel, a statue, an inscription, was an immence return for a battle won, or a city taken.

There, a man that had performed a noble action, thought himself sufficiently recompenced in the action itself. He could not see one of his coun∣trymen, without feeling the inward satisfaction of knowing himself his benefactor; he reckoned the •••ber of his services by that of his fellow citi∣zens. Any man is capable of doing a piece of service to another man; but it is somewhat divine to contribute to the happiness of a whole society.

The manly Spirit produced in France, by their new System of Equality.

From Dr. Moore's Journal.

IT was natural to think that the introduction of the term egalite would, produce an universal inso∣lence among the lower classes of people in France, towards their superiors: but I confess I have not Page  79hitherto remarked any disagreeable instances of this nature. No person, indeed, of whatever rank, is allowed to dress his footmen in livery, but every one is allowed to have as many footmen as he pleases; and when L. L—'s carriage was driving, a day or two since, in at the gates of the Louvre, it was stopped by the centinel, who had observed that the hammer-cloth had fringes of a different colour; and informed his lordship, that such a kind of distinction was no where permitted in France▪ being contrary to that egalite, which every Frenchman had sworn to. The coachman had been ordered never to use any but a plain cloth: but having a fringed one in his possession, of which he was very vain, he had ven∣tured to adorn his coach-box with it, on this un∣fortunate day. As the poor fellow was taking it off with a very mortified air, the valet de-place re∣proached him for having put it on; which the sen∣tinel over hearing, said angrily to the coachman,

ll sied bien à un gueux comone toi d'etre aris∣tocrate.
(It well becomes a beggar like you to give yourself the airs of an aristocrate.)

A few days since, I saw a man dressed in the uniform of a general officer▪ come up to a poor fel∣low, who with a pike in his hand, stood centinel at a gate, and addressing him by the name of "Ci∣toyen Soldat," asked him the way to a particular street.

The pikemen were formerly considered as of a rank inferior to the national guards, who are armed with muskets; but of late they are put on a foot∣ing, and do duty together; but still it might have been expected, that this gentleman's rank in the army would have commanded the strongest marks of respect from a common soldier, if his laced coat failed to produce them in a poor fellow almost in rags.

"Tenez, mon camarade," said the pikeman;

you will first turn to the right, and then walk straight on until, &c.

Page  80The officer having heard the directions, returned thanks to the Citoyen Soldat, and moving his hat, walked away.

An extract from the Examination of James Harrington, whn confined in the Tower, by the Earl of Lauder∣dale, &c.

Har.

MY Lord, in the preamble, you charge me with being eminent in principles, contrary to the king's government, and the laws of this nation. Some, my lord▪ have aggravated this, saying▪ that I, being a private man, have been so mad as to meddle with politics: what had a private man to do with government? My Lord, there is not any public person, not any magistrate, that has writ∣ten in the politics worth a button. All that have been excellent in this way, have been private men, my lord▪ as myself. There is Plat there is Aris∣totle, there is Livi, there is Machiavel. My Lord, I can sum up Aristotle's politics in a very few words; he says there is the barbarous monarchy, (such a one where the people have no voices in making the laws): he says there is the heroic monarchy (such a one where the people have their votes in making the laws); and then he says there is the democracy; and affirms, that a man CANNOT be said to have liberty, but in a democracy only.

My Lord Lauderdale, who thus far had been very attentive, at this shewed some impatience.
Har.

I SAY Aristotle says so: I have not said so much. And under what prince was it? Was it not under Alexander the greatest prince then in the world? I beseech you, my lord, did Alexander hang up Aristotle, did he molest him? Livi for a com∣monwealth is one of the fullest authors: did not he write under Agustus Coesar? did Coesar hang up LiviPage  81did he molest him? Machiavel, what a com∣monwealth's man was he? but he wrote under the Medici, when they were princes in Florence, did they hang up Malchiavel, or did they molest him? I have done no otherwise than as the greatest poli∣ticians, the king will do no otherwise than as the greatest princes. But, my Lord, these authors had not that to say for themselves that I have; I did not write under a prince, I wrote under a usurper, Oliver. He having started up into the throne, his officers (as pretending to be for a commonwealth) kept a mur∣muring, at which he told them, that he knew not what they meant, nor themselves: but let any of them shew him what they meant, by a common∣wealth (or that there was any such thing) they should see that he sought not himself, but to make good the cause. Upon this some sober men came to me, and told me, if any man in England could shew what a commonwealth was, it was myself. Upon this persuasion I wrote, and after I had written, Oliver never answered his officers as he had done before, therefore I wrote not against the king's government. And for the law, if the law could have punished me, Oliver had done it; therefore my writing was not obnoxious to the law. After Oliver, the Parliament said that they were a commonwealth, I said they were not, and proved it; insomuch that the Parliament accounted me a cavalier and one that had no other design in my writing, than to bring in the King, and now the King, first of any man, makes me a roundhead.

Lord.

These things are out of doors; if you be no plotter, the King does not reflect upon your writings.

Notwithstanding the apparent innocence of our author, he was still detained a close prisoner many months.

Page  82

A SONG.

O'ER the vine-cover'd hills and gay regions of France.
See the day-star of Liberty rise;
O'er the clouds of detraction unweared advance,
And hold its new course thro' the skies.
An effulgence so mild, with a lustre so bright,
All Europe with wonder surveys;
And from deserts of darkness; and dungeons of night,
Contends for a share of the blaze.
Let Burke, like a bat, from its splendour retire,
A splendour too strong for his eyes;
Let pedants, and fools, his effusions admire,
Intrapt in his cobwebs like flies.
Shall phrenzy and sophistry hope to prevail,
Where reason opposes her weight;
When the welfare of millions is hung on the scale,
And the balance yet trembles with fate?
Ah! who, midst the horrors of night would abide
That can taste the pure breezes of morn,
Or who that has drunk of the chrystaline tide,
To the feculent flood would return?
When the bosom of beauty the throbbing heart meets,
Ah, who can the transport decline?
Or who that has tasted of liberty's sweets,
The prize but with life would resign?
—But 'tis over—high Heav'n the decision approves,
Oppression has struggled in vain;
To the hell she has form'd superstition removes,
And tyranny bites his own chain.
In the records of time a new aera unfolds,
All nature exalts in its birth —
His creation benign, the Creator beholds,
And gives a new charter to earth.
Page  83
O catch its high import, ye winds as ye blow,
O bear it ye waves as ye roll!
From regions that feel the sun's vertical glow,
To the farthest extremes of the pole.
Equal rights—equal laws—to the nations around,
Peace and friendship its precepts impart,
And wherever the footsteps of man shall be found,
May he bind the decree on his heart.

REASONS OF MONARCHY.

[From HARRINGTON's OCEANA]

I HAVE often thought it strange, that among all the governments, either past or present, the monarchial should so far in extent and number ex∣ceed the popular, as that they could never yet come into comparison. I could never be persuaded but it was more happy for a people to be disposed of by a number of persons jointly interested and concern∣ed with them, than to be numbered as the herd and inheritance of one, to whose lust and madness they were absolutely subject; and that any man of the weak∣est reason and generosity, would not rather chuse for his habitation that spot of earth, where there was access to honour by virtue▪ and no worth could be excluded, rather than that where all advance∣ment should proceed from the will of one scarcely hearing or seeing with his own organs, and gained for the most part by means lewd and indirect: and all this in the end to amount to nothing else but a more splendid and dangerous slavery.

He knows nothing, that knows not how super∣stitiously, the generality of mankind is given to retain traditions, and how pertinacious they are in the maintenance of their first prejudices, insomuch that a discovery or more refined reason is as insup∣portable to them, as the sun is to an eye, newly brought out of darkness. Hence opinionativeness (which is commonly proportioned to their igno∣rance) Page  84and a generous obstinacy, sometimes to death and ruin. So that it is no wonder if we see many gentlemen, whose education enabled them only to use their senses and first thoughts, so dazzled with the splendour of a court, prepossessed with the affection of a prince, or bewitched with some sub∣dalous favour, that they chose rather any hazard than the enchantment should be dissolved. Others, perhaps a degree above these, yet in respect of some title stuck upon the family (which has been as for∣tunate a mystery of king-craft as any other) or in re∣verence to some glorious former atchievments [mind∣ing not that in all these cases the people are the only effective means, and the king only imaginary] think they should degenerate from bravery in bringing on a change. Others are withheld by sloth and timorousness, either not daring, or unwilling to be happy; some looking no further than their pri∣vate welfare, indifferent at the multiplication of public evils; others [and these the worst of all] out of a pravity of nature sacrificing to their ambition and avarice, and in order to that following any pow∣er, concurring with any machinations, and sup∣porting their authors; while princes themselves [trained up in these arts, or receiving them by tra∣dition] know how to wind all their humours to their own advantage, now foisting the divinity of their titles into pulpits, now amusing the people with pomp and shows, now diverting their hot spirits to some unprofitable foriegn war [making way to their accursed ends of revenge or glory, with the effusion of that blood which should be as dear to them as their own] now stroking the people with some feeble but inforced law, for which notwithstanding they will be paid [and it is observed the most notorious tyrants have taken this course] now giving up the eminentest of of their ministers, [which they part with as indifferently as their robes] to the rage and fury of the people: so that they are commanded and condemned by the same Page  85mouth, and the credulous and ignorant, believing their king divinely set over them, sit still, and by degrees grow into quiet and admiration, especially if lulled asleep with some small continuance of peace (be it ever so injust, unsound, or dangerous) as if the body politic could not languish of an internal disease, though its complexion be fresh and cheerful, Those are the reason which (if I conceive aright) have stupified the less knowing part of mankind.

THE FREE NOTIONS OF THE ENGLISH.

FROM THE PERSIAN LETTERS.

ALL the nations of Europe are not under equal subjection to their princes: for instance, the impatient humour of the English seldom gives the king leisure to extend or strengthen his authority: Submission and obedience are virtues they very lit∣tle value themselves upon. They, hold very ex∣traordinary opinions about this article. According to them there is but one tie that has any effect upon men, which is that of gratitude: a husband, a wife, a father, a son, are bound to each other by nothing, but either the love they bear to each other, or mu∣tual services and benefits; and these various mo∣tives of acknowledgement, are the origin of all kingdoms, and all societies.

But if a prince, instead of endeavouring to make his subjects happy, studies only how to oppress and destroy them, the foundation of obedience ceases; nothing ties, nothing obliges them to him, and they return to their natural liberty. They maintain that no unlimited power can be lawful, because it could never have a lawful beginning. For we cannot, say they, give to another more power over us than we have over ourselves: Now we have not an unli∣mited power over ourselves; for instance, we can∣not touch our own lives; no man upon earth there∣fore, conclude they, can have such a power.

High treason, according to them, is nothing but a crime committed by the weaker against the Page  86stronger, by disobeying him, let him disobey him in what way he will. And accordingly the people of England, happening to prove the stronger in a con∣tention with one of their kings, declared it to be high treason in a prince to make war upon his sub∣jects. They have very good reason, therefore to say, that the precept in their Alcoran, which en∣joins obedience to the powers, is not very hard to follow, since they cannot help following it if they would; in as much as it is not to the most virtu∣ous that they are bound to submit, but to the strongest.

The English tell you, that one of their kings hav∣ing overcome and taken a prince that rebelled against him, and disputed the crown with him, and upbraiding him with his treachery and perfidious∣ness:—It has been decided but a moment, an∣swered the unfortunate prince, which of us two is the traitor.

ON LOYALTY. FROM CATO'S LETTERS.

NO good prince will pretend that there is any loyalty due to him further, than he himself is loyal to the law, and observant of his people, the makers of kings and of laws. If any man mis∣led by sound and delusion, doubt this, let him con∣sider what is the design of magistracy, and what the duty of magistrates; and if he has reason in him, he will find that his duty is only due to those who perform theirs. That protection and allegiance are reciprocal; that every man has a right to de∣fend what no man has a right to take: That the di∣vine right of kings, if they had it, can only warrant them in doing actions that are divine, and cannot protect them in cruelty, depredation and oppres∣sion: That a divine right to act wickedly, is a con∣tradiction and blasphemy, as it is Maledictio Supremi Numinis, a reproach upon the Deity, as if he gave Page  87any man a commission to be a devil: That a king in comparison with the universe, is not so much as a mayor of a town in comparison of a kingdom; and that, were Mr. Mayor, called king, it would give him no new right; or, if a king were only called Mr. Mayor, it would not lesson nor abro∣gate his old jurisdiction: That they are both civil officers, and that an offence in the lesser is more pardonable than an offence in the greater. That the doctrines of unbroken hereditary right, and blind obedience, are the flights and forgeries of flatterers, who belie Heaven, and abuse men, to make their own court to power, and that not one of them will stand the trial himself; in fine, that government, honest and legal government, is im∣perium legum non hominum, the authority of law, and not of lust.

These are the principles upon which our go∣vernment stands, the principles upon which every free government must stand: and that we Britons, dare tell such truths, and publish such principles is a glorious proof of our civil and religious free∣dom: They are truths which every Briton ought to know, even children and servants; They are eternal truths, that will remain for ever, though in too many countries they are dangerous or useless or little known.

Before I have done, I would take notice of another mistake very common, concerning loyal∣ty: It is indeed a trick more than a mistake; I mean of those who would assert or rather create a sort of LOYALTY TO MINISTERS, and make every thing which they do not like, an offence against their master.

FROM SWIFT's WORKS. AN UNPLEASANT LESSON FOR THE PIGS' BETTERS.

I HAD the curiosity to enquire, in a particular manner, by what method great numbers had procured to themselves high titles of honour, and Page  88prodigious estates; and I confined my enquiry to a very modern period. However, without granting upon present times, because I would be sure to give no offence, even to foreigners (for I hope the reader need not be told, that I do not in the least intend my own country, in what I say upon this occasion) and a great number of persons were called up, and, upon a very slight examination, discovered such a scene of infamy, that I cannot reflect upon it with∣out some seriousness. Perjury, oppression, subbr∣nation, fraud, pandarism, and the like infirmities, were amongst the most excuseable arts they had to maintain, and for these I gave, as it was reasonable great allowance. But, when some confessed they owed their greatness and wealth to sodomy, or in∣cest; others, to the prostituting of their own wives and daughters; others to the betraying of their country, or their prince; some to poisoning, more to the perverting of justice, in order to destroy the innocent: I hope I may be pardoned, if these dis∣coveries inclined me a little to abate of that pro∣found veneration which I am naturally apt to pay to persons of HIGH rank, who ought to be treated with the utmost respect, due to their sublime digni∣ty, by us their inferiors.

LESSONS FOR THE MONOPOLIZERS OF LAND.

Lesson I.

Lev. Chap. xxv.—And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the Jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land. And ye shall hallow the fiftieth Page  89year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land, unto all the inkabitants thereof: It shall be a Jubilee unto you: And ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family. A Jubilee shall that fiftieth yeer be unto you: You shall not sow, nor reap that which groweth of it∣self in it, nor gather the grapes in it of thy vine undressed. For it is the Jubilee; it shall be holy unto you: Ye shall eat the encrease thereof out of the field. In the year of the Jubilee, ye shall return every man unto his possession.

The land shall not be sold for ever: For the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me. And in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land. If thy brother be waxen poor, and hath sold away some of his possession, and if any of his kin come to redeem it, then shall he redeem that which his brother sold. And if the man have none to redeem it; and himself be able to redeem it; then let him count the years of the sale thereof, and restore the overplus unto the man to whom he sold it; that he may return unto his possession. But if he be not able to restore it to him, then that which is sold shall remain in the hand of him that bought, until the year of jubilee; and in the jubilee it shall go out, and he shall return unto his possession.

Lesson II.

Isaiah, v. 8.—Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth.

ON EQUALITY. From Puffendorf's Whole Duty of Man, according to the Law of Nature.

MAN is a creature not only most solicitous for the preservation of himself, but has of him∣self so nice an estimation and value, that to dimi∣nish Page  90any thing thereof does frequently move in him as great indignation as if a mischief were done to his body or estate. Nay, there seems to him to be somewhat of dignity in the appellation of MAN: so that the last and most efficacious argu∣ment to curb the arrogance of insulting men, is sually—I am not a dog, but a man as well as your∣self. Since then human nature is the same in us all, and since no man will or can cheerfully join in society with any, by whom he is not at least to be esteemed equal as a man, and as a partaker of the same common nature. It follows that, among those duties which men owe to each other, this ob∣tains the second place, That every man esteem and treat another, as naturally equal to himself, or as one who is a man as well as he:

Now this equality of mankind does not alone consist in this, that men of ripe age have almost the same strength, or if one be weaker, he may be able to kill the stronger, either by treachery, or dex∣terity, or by being better furnished with weapons: but in this, that though nature may have accom∣plished one man beyond another, with various endowments of body and mind: yet nevertheless he is obliged to an observation of the precepts of the law-natural towards the meaner person, after the same manner as he himself expects the same on others; and has not therefore any greater li∣berty given him to insult upon his fellows. As, on the other side, the niggardliness of nature or fortune cannot of themselves set any man so low as that he shall be in a worse condition, as to the enjoyment of common right, than others. But what one man may: rightfully demand or expect from as another, the same is due to others also (cir∣cumstancies being alike) from him; and whatsoever one shall deem reasonable to be done by others, the like it is most just he practise himself; For the obligation of maintaining sociality among mankind, Page  91equally binds every man; neither may one man more than another violate the law of nature, in any part. Not but that there are other popular reasons which illustrate this equality; to wit, That we are all descended of the same stock; that we are all born, nourished, and die after the same manner; and, that God has not given any of us a certain assurance, that our happy condition in this world shall not at one time or other be changed. Besides, the precepts of the Christian religion tell us, that God favours not man for his nobility, power, or wealth, but for sincere piety, which may as well be found in a mean and humble man, as in those of high degree.

Now from this equality it follows, That he who would use the assistance of others in promoting his own advantage, ought to be as free and ready to use his power and abilities for their service, when they want his help and assistance on like occasions. For he who requires that other men should do him kindnesses, and expects himself to be free from doing the like, must be of opinion, that those other men are below himself and not his equals. Hence as those persons are the best members of a commu∣nity, who, without any difficulty, allow the same things to their neighbours that themselves require of him; so those are altogether incapable of socie∣ty, who setting a high rate on themselves, in re∣gard to others, will take upon them to act any thing towards their neighbour, and expect greater deference and more respect than the rest of man∣kind; and in their insolent manner demanding a greater portion unto themselves of those things, to which, all men having a common right, they can in reason claim no larger share than other men: Whence this also is an univerfal duty of the law∣natural, That no man, who has not a peculiar right ought to arrogate more to himself than he is ready to allow to his fellows, but that he permit other men to enjoy equal privileges with himself.

Page  92The same e quality also shews what every man's behaviour ought to be, when his business is to dis∣tribute justice among others; to wit, that he treat them as equals, and indulge not that, unless the merits of the cause require it, to one, which he dentes to another: For, if he do otherwise, he who is discountenanced is, at the same time, affronted and wronged, and loses somewhat of the dignity which nature bestowed upon him. Whence it follows, that things which are in common, are of right to be divided by equal parts among those who are equal: Where the thing will not admit of di∣vision, they who are equally concerned, are to use it indifferently; and, if the quantity of the thing will bear it, as much as each party shall think fit; But if this cannot be allowed, then it is to be used after a stated manner, and proportioned to the number of the claimants; because it is not possible to find out any other way of observing equality. But if it be a thing of that nature as not to be capable of being divided, nor of being pos∣sessed in common, then it must be used by turns; and if this yet will not answer the point, and it is not possible the rest should be satisfied by an equi∣valent. the best way must be, to determine posses∣sion by lot; for in such cases, no fitter method can be thought on, to remove all opinion of partiality and contempt of any party, without debasing the person whom fortune does not favour,

ON THE ABSURDITY OF UNALTERA∣BLE ESTABLISHMENTS. FROM PRIESTLY ON GOVERNMENT.

HIGHLY as we think of the wisdom of our ancestors, we justly think ourselves, of the present-age, wiser, and, if we be not blinded by Page  93the prejudice of education, must see, that we can, in many respects, improve upon the institutions they have transmitted to us. Let us not doubt, but that every generation in posterity will be as much superior to us in political, and in all kinds of knowledge, and that they will be able to im∣prove upon the best civil institutions that we can prescribe for them. Instead then of adding to the difficulties which we ourselves find, in making the improvements we wish to introduce, let us make this great and desireable work easier to them than it has been to us.

However, such is the progress of knowledge, and the enlargement of the human mind, that, in future time, notwithstanding all obstructions thrown in the way of human genius, men of great and exalted views will undoubtedly arise, who will see through, and detest our narrow politics; when the ill-advisers, and ill-advised authous of these illiberal and contracted schemes, will be re∣membered with infamy and execration: When notwithstanding their talents as statesmen or wri∣ters, and though they may have pursued the same mind enslaving schemes by more artful and less sanguinary methods, they will be ranked among the Bonners and Gardeners of past ages; they must have been worse than Bonners and Garden∣ers, who could pursue the same ends by the same means, in this more humane and more enlighten∣ed age.

England hath hitherto taken the lead, in almost every thing, great and good, and her citizens stand foremost in the annals of fame, as having shaken off the fetters which hung upon the human mind, and called it forth to the exertion of its noblest powers. And her constitution has been so far from receiving any injury from the efforts of these her free-born enterprising sons, that she is in part, indebted to them for the unrivalled repu∣tation Page  94she now enjoys, of having the best system of policy in Europe. After weathering so many real storms, let us not quit the helm at the appre∣hension of imaginary dangers, but steadily hold on in what, I trust, is the most glorious course that a government can be in. Let all the friends of li∣berty and human nature join to free the minds of men from the shackles of narrow and impolitic laws. Let us be free ourselves, and leave the blessings of freedom to our posterity.

In short, it seems to have been the intention of Divine Providence, that mankind should be, as far as possible, self-taught; that we should attain to every thing excellent and useful, as the result of our own experience and observation; that our judgment should be formed by the appearances which, are presented to them, and our hearts in∣structed by their own feelings. But by the unna∣tural system of rigid, unalterable establishments, we put it out of our power to instruct ourselves, or to derive any advantage from the lights we ac∣quire from experience and observation; and there∣by, as far as in our power, we counteract the kind intentions of the Deity in the constitution of the world, and in providing for a state of constant, though slow improvement in every thing.

In spite of all the fetters we can lay upon the human mind, notwithstanding all possible discou∣ragements in the way of free enquiry, knowledge of all kinds will encrease. The wisdom of one generation will be folly in the next. And that, though we have seen this verified in the history of near two thousand years, we persist in the absurd maxim of making a preceding generation dictate to a succeeding one, which is the same thing as making the foolish instruct the wise; for what is a lower degree of wisdom but comparatively folly?

Were any more laws restraining the liberty of the press in force, it is impossible to say how far Page  95they might be construed to extend. Those already in being are more than are requisite, and inconsist∣ent with the interests of truth. Were they to ex∣tend further, every author would lie at the mercy of the ministers of state, who might condemn, in∣discriminately, upon some pretence or other, every work that gave them umbrage; under such cir∣cumstances; might fall some of the greatest and noblest productions of the human mind, if such works could be produced in those circumstances. For, if men of genius knew they could not pub∣lish the discoveries they made, they would not give free scope to their faculties, in making and pursuing those discoveries. It is the thought of publication, and the prospect of fame, which is generally the great incentive to men of genius to exert their faculties, in attempting the untrodden paths of speculation. In those unhappy circum∣stances, writers would entertain a dread of every new subject. No man could safely indulge him∣self in any thing bold, enterprising, and out of the vulgar road; and in all publications we should see a timidity incompatable with the spirit of disco∣very. If any towering genius should arise in those unfavourable circumstances, a Newton in the na∣tural world; or a Locke, a Hutchinson, a Clarke, or a Harley in the moral, the only effectual method to prevent their defusing a spirit of enterprize or innovation, which is natural to such great souls, could be no other than that which Tarquin so sig∣nificantly expressed, by taking off the heads of all those poppies which overlooked the rest. Such men could not but be dangerous, and give umbrage in a country, where it was the maxim of the go∣vernment, that every thing of importance should for ever remain unalterably fixed.

Page  96

GENERAL POLITICAL APHORISMS OR MAXIMS. FROM HARRINGTON'S WORKS.

TO leave ourselves and posterity to a farther purchase in blood and sweat of that which we may presently possess, enjoy, and hereafter bequeath to posterity in peace and glory, is inhu∣man and impious.

As certainly and suddenly as a good state of health dispels the peevishness and peril of sickness, does a good state of government the animosity and danger of parties.

The frame of a commonwealth, having been first proposed and considered, expedients (in case such should be found necessary for the safe effectual, and perfect introduction of the same) may with some aim be applied and fitted; as to a house, when the model is resolved upon, we fit scaffolds in build∣ing. But first to resolve upon expedients, and then to fit to them the frame of a commonwealth, is as if one should set up props, and then build a house to lean upon them.

While the civil and religious parts of a common∣wealth are in forming, there is a necessity that she should be supported by an army; but when the military and provincial parts are rightly formed, she can have no farther use of any other army. Wherefore at this point, and not till then, her armies are by the practice of commonwealths, upon slighter occasions, to have half pay for life, and to be disbanded.

Where there is a standing army, and not a formed government, there the army of necessity will have dictatorian power.

Page  97Where an army subsists upon the pay or riches of a single person, or of a nobility, that army is always monarchical. Where an army subsists not by the riches of a single person, nor of a nobility, that army is always popular.

The reason why the nations that have common∣wealths use them so well, and cherish them so much, and yet that so few nations have common∣wealths, is, that in using a commonwealth it is not necessary it should be understood; but in mak∣ing a commonwealth, that it be understood is of absolute necessity.

It shall be as soon found when and where the soul of a man was in the body of a beast, as when or where the soul or freedom natural to democracy, was in any other form than that only of a senate, and an assembly of the people.

As the soul of man can never be in the body of a beast, unless God make a new creation; so nei∣ther the soul or freedom, natural to democracy, in any other form whatsoever than that only of a se∣nate and a popular assembly.

To the making of a well ordered commonwealth, there goes little more of pains or charge, or work without doors, than the establishment of an equal or apt division of the territory, and the proposing of such election to the divisions so made, as from an equal foundation may raise equal superstruc∣tures; the rest being but paper work, is as soon done as said or voted.

The highest earthly felicity that a people can ask or God can give, is an equal and well ordered com∣monwealth. Such a one among the Israelites was the reign of GOD; and such a one (for the same reason) may be among Christians the reign of CHRIST, though not every one in the Christian commonwealth should be any more a Christian indeed, than every one in the Israelitish commonwealth was an Israelite indeed.

Page  98

ADDRESS AND DECLARATION OF THE FRIENDS of Universal PEACE and LIBERTY' Held at the Thatched House Tavern, St. James's-street, August 20, 1791.

Friends and Fellow Citizens.

AT a moment like the present, when wilful misrepresentations are industriously spread by the partizans of arbitrary power, and the advocates of passive obedience and Court-Government; we think it incumbent upon us to declare to the world our principles, and the motives of our conduct.

We rejoice at the glorious event of the French Revolution.

If it be asked—What is the French Revolution to us?

We answer—It is much. Much to us as men: Much to us as Englishmen.

As men, we rejoice in the freedom of twenty-five millions of our fellow men. We rejoice in the prospect, which such a magnificent example opens to the world. We congratulate the French nation for having laid the axe to the root of tyranny, and for erecting Government on the sacred HEREDI∣TARY Rights of MAN.—Rights which appertain to ALL, and not to any one more than to another.—We know of no human authority, superior to that of a whole nation; and we profess and proclaim it as our principle, that every nation has at all times, an inherent, indefeasible right to constitute and establish such Government for itself as best ac∣cords with its disposition, interest and happiness.

As Englishmen, we also rejoice, because we are immediately interested in the French Revolution.

Without enquiring into the justice, on either side of the reproachful charges of intrigue and am∣bition, Page  99which the English and French courts have constantly made on each other, we confine our∣selves to this observation;—That if the Court of France only was in fault, and the numerous wars which have distressed both countries are chargea∣ble to her alone, that Court now exists no longer; and the cause and the consequence must now cease together. The French therefore, by the Revolu∣tion they have made, have conquered for us as well as for themselves; if it be true, that their Court only was in fault and ours never.

On this state of the case, the French Revolution concerns us immediately. We are oppressed with a heavy National debt, a burthen of taxes, and an expensive administration of Government; beyond those of any people in the world. We have also a very numerous poor; and we hold, that the moral obligation of providing for old age, helpless infan∣cy and poverty, is far superior to that of supply∣ing the invented wants of courtly extravagance, ambition and intrigue.

We believe there is no instance to be produced, but in England, of seven millions of inhabitants, which make but little more than one million of fa∣milies, paying yearly SEVENTEEN MILLIONS of taxes.

As it has always been held out by all adminis∣trations, that the restless ambition of the Court of France rendered this expence necessary to us for our own defence; we consequently rejoice as men deeply interested in the French Revolution; for that Court as we have already said exists no longer and consequently the same enormous expences need not continue to us.

Thus rejoicing, as we sincerely do, both as men and Englishmen, as lovers of universal peace and freedom, and as friends to our national prosperity and a reduction of our public expences; we can∣not but express our astonishment, that any part, or Page  100any members of our own government, should re∣probate the extinction of that very power in France or wish to see it restored, to whose influence they formerly attributed (whilst they appeared to la∣ment) the enormous increase of our own burthens and taxes. What then, Are they sorry that the pretence for new oppressive taxes, and the occasion for continuing many old taxes, will be at an end? —If so, and if it is the policy of Courts and Court Government to prefer enemies to friends, and a system of war to that of peace, as affording more pretences for Places, Offices, Pensions, Revenue and Taxation, it is high time for the people of every nation to look with circumspection to their own interest.

Those who pay the expence, and, not those who participate in the emoluments arising from it, are the persons immediately interested in enquiries of this kind. We are a part of that National body, on whom this annual expence of seventeen millions falls; and we consider the present opportunity of the French Revolution, as a most happy one for les∣sening the enormous load, under which this nation groans. If this be not done, we shall then have reason to conclude, that the cry of intrigue and ambition against other Courts is no more than the common cant of all Courts.

We think it also necessary to express our asto∣nishment, that a Government desirous of being called FREE, should prefer connections with the most despotic and arbitrary powers in Europe.— We know of none more deserving this description than those of Turkey and Prussia, and the whole combination of German despots.—Separated as we happily are by nature from the tumults of the con∣tinent we reprobate all systems and intrigues which sacrifice (and that too at a great expence) the bles∣sings of our natural situation.—Such systems can∣not have a national origin.

Page  101If we are asked, What Government is?—We hold it to be nothing more than a National Association end we hold that to be the best, which secures to every man his rights, and promotes the greatest quantity of happiness with the least expence.

We live to improve, or we live in vain; and therefore we admit of no maxims of government or policy, on the mere score of antiquity, or other men's authority, the Old Whigs or the New.

We will exercise the reason with which we are endowed, or we possess it unworthily. As reason is given at all times, it is for the purpose of being used at all times.

Among the blessings which the French Revolu∣tion has produced to that nation, we enumerate the abolition of the feudal system of injustice and tyranny, on the 4th of August, 1789. Beneath the feudal system all Europe has long groaned, and from it England is not yet free. Game laws, bo∣rough-tenures and tyrannical monopolies of nu∣merous kinds still remain amongst us: but rejoic∣ing as we sincerely do, in the freedom of others, till we shall happily accomplish our own, we intend∣ed to commemorate this prelude to the universal extirpation of the feudal system, by meeting on the anniversary of that day, (the 4th. of August) at the Crown and Anchor. From this meeting we were prevented by the interference of certain un∣named and sculking persons with the Master of the Tavern, who informed us that on their represen∣tations he could not receive us.—Let those who live by, or countenance feudal oppressions, take the reproach of this ineffectual meanness and cow∣ardice to themselves. They connot stifle the pub∣lic declaration of our honest, open, and avowed opinions.

These are our principles, and these our senti∣ments. They embrace the interest and happiness of the great body of the nation of which we are a Page  102part. As to riots and tumults, let those answer for them, who by wilful misrepresentations en∣deavour to excite and promote them; or, who feek to stun the sense of the nation, and lose the great cause of public good, in the outrages of a misinformed mob. We take our ground on prin∣ciples that require no such riotous aid. We have nothing to apprehend from the poor; for we are pleading their cause. And we fear not proud oppression; for we have truth on our side.

We say, and we repeat it; that the French Re∣volution opens to the world an opportunity, in which all good citizens must rejoice: that of pro∣moting the general happiness of man. And that 〈◊〉, moreover, offers to this country in particular an opportunity of reducing our enormous taxes.

These are our objects, and we will pursue them.

JOHN HORNE TOOKE, Chairman,

LESSONS FOR STATESMEN.

Lesson I.—FROM-COMMERCE, IN THE ENCYCLO∣PADIA BRITANNICA.

THE augmentation of riches, in a country, either not capable of improvement as to the soil, or where precautions have not been taken for facilitating a multiplication of inhabitants, by the importation of subsistence, will be productive of the most calamitous circumstances.

On one side, this wealth will effectually dimi∣nish the mass of food before produced; and on the other, will encrease the number of useless con∣sumers. —The first of these circumstances will raise the demand for food; and the second will diminish the number of useful free hands, and consequently raise the price of manufactures; here are shortly the outlines of this progress.

Page  103The more rich and luxurious a people are, the more delicate they become in their manner of liv∣ing, if they fed on bread formerly, they will now feed on meat; if they fed on meat, they will now feed on fowl. The same ground which feeds an hundred with bread, and a proportionable quantity of animal food, will not maintain an equal number of delicate livers. Food must then become more scarce; demand for it rises: the rich are always the strongest in the market; they con∣sume the food, and the poor are forced to starve. Here the wide door to modern distress opens; to wit, a hurtful competition for subsistence. Farther when a people become rich, they think less of occonomy; a number of useless servants are hired, to become an additional dead weight on consump∣tion; and when their starving countrymen cannot supply the extravagance of the rich so cheaply as other nations, they either import instruments of foreign luxury, or seek to enjoy them out of their own country.

Lesson II.—FROM THE SAME.

ASET of industrious and frugal people were assembled in a country (Holland) by nature subject to many inconveniencies, the removing of which necessarily employed abundance of hands. Their situation upon the continent, the power of their former masters, and the ambition of their neighbours, obliged them to keep great bodies of troops. These two articles, added to the numbers of the community, without either enriching the state by their labour exported, or producing food for themselves or countrymen.

The scheme of a commonwealth was calculated, to draw together the industrious; but it has been still more useful in subsisting them; the republi∣can form of government being there greatly sub∣divided, vests authority sufficient in every part of Page  104it, to make suitable provision for their own sub∣sistence; and the tie which unites them, regards only matters of public concern. Had the whole been governed by one sovereign, or by one coun∣cil, this important matter never could have been effectuated.

It would be impossible for the most able minis∣ter that ever lived, to provide nourishment for a country so extensive as France, or even as En∣gland, supposing those as fully peopled as Holland is: even though it should be admitted, that a suf∣ficient quantity of food might be found in other countries for their subsistence. The enterprize would be too great, abuses would multiply; the consequence would be, that the inhabitants would die for want. But in Holland the case is different; every little town takes care of its own inhabi∣tants; and this care being the object of applica∣tion and profit to so many persons, is accomplish∣ed with success.

Lesson III.—From Lady Montague's Letters.

IT is impossible not to observe the difference be∣tween the free towns, and those under the go∣vernment of absolute princes, as all the little sovereigns of Germany are. In the first there ap∣pears an air of commerce and plenty: The streets are well built, and full of people neatly and plainly dressed. The shops are loaded with mer∣chandize, and the commonality are clean and chear∣ful. In the other you see a fort of shabby finery, a number of dirty people of quality tawdred out: narrow nasty streets out of repair, wretchedly thin of inhabitants, and above half of the common sort asking alms. I cannot help fancying one under the figure of a clean Dutch Citizen's wife; and the other like a poor town lady of pleasure, painted and ribboned out in her head dress, with tarnished silver-laced shoes, a ragged under-petticoat, a mise∣rable mixture of vice and poverty.

Page  105We take care to make such short stages every day, that I rather fancy myself upon parties of pleasure, than upon the road; and sure nothing can be more agreeable than travelling in Holland. The whole country appears a large garden, the roads are all paved▪ shaded on each side with rows of trees, and bordered with large canals, full of boats passing and repassing. Every twenty paces gives you the prospect of some villa, and every four hours that of a large town, so surprisingly neat, I am sure you would be charmed with them.

My arrival at Rotterdam▪ presented me a new scene of pleasure. All the streets are paved with broad stones, and before many of the meanest arti∣ficer's doors, are placed seats of various coloured marbles, so neatly kept, that I assure you, I walk∣ed almost all over the town yesterday, incognito, in my slippers, without one spot of dirt; and you may see the Dutch maids washing the pavement of the street with more application than ours do our bed-chambers. The town seems so full of people, with such busy faces, and all in motion, that I can hardly fancy it is not some celebrated fair; but I see it every day the same. It is certain no town can be more advantageously situated for commerce. Here are seven large canals, on which the mer∣chants' ships come up to the very doors of their houses. The shops and warehouses are of a very surprizing neatness and magnificence, filled with an incredible quantity of fine merchandize, and so much cheaper than what we see in England, that I have much ado to persuade myself I am still so near it. Here is neither dirt nor beggary to be seen. One is not shocked with those loathsome cripples, so common in London, nor teazed with the importunity of idle fellows and wenches, that chuse to be nasty and lazy. The common servants and little shop-women here, are more nicely clean, than most of our ladies; and the great variety of Page  106neat dresses (every woman dressing her head after her own fashion) is an additional pleasure in see∣ing the towns.

ACCOUNT OF THE GOVERNMENT OF GENEVA BY D'ALEMBERT.

IT is very remarkable, that a city, which con∣tains scarce 24000 inhabitants, and whose scat∣tered territory consists not of thirty villages, should be a sovereign state, and one of the most flourishing cities of Europe; enriched by her li∣berty and her commerce, she frequently beholds every thing around her in flames, without having any share in the calamity. The events which disturb the rest of Europe, afford her only an amnsing spectacle, which she observes without tak∣ing any part in them. Attached to France, by treaties and by commerce, to England by com∣merce and religion, she is too prudent to interest herself in the wars that embroil these two power∣ful nations; she pronounces with impartiality upon the justice of their contests, and judges all the so∣vereigns of Europe, without flattering, injuring, or fearing them.

The city is well fortified, particularly on the side of that prince from whom it has most to fear, the King of Sardinia. On the side of France it is almost open and defenceless; but discipline is kept up as in a military place, the arsenals and maga∣zines well furnished, every citizen is a soldier, as in Switzerland, and ancient Rome; the Genevois are allowed to go into foreign service, but the re∣public does not furnish any state with regular bo∣dies of men, nor does it suffer an inrolment with∣in its own territories.

Though the individuals are rich, the government is poor, from that aversion which the people shew to new taxes, how little burdensome soever. The revenues of the state do not amount to 500,000 Page  107livres of French money; and yet, by the admirable oeconomy with which they are managed. they are sufficient, and even afford a surplus for extraor∣dinary emergencies.

Hereditary dignity is unknown at Geneva; the sons of the first magistrate are lost in the crowd, till their own merit distinguishes them; nobility and riches confer neither rank nor privilege, nor give any facility of advancement to the offices of the state. All solicitation for places is strictly prohi∣bited; —Public employments are so little lucrative, that they afford no temptations for the avaricious; they are objects only to nobler minds, by the con∣sideration and respect they procure.

Few disputes come to a legal trial; they are ge∣nerally adjusted by common friends, by the advo∣cates themselves and by the judges.

Their sumptuary laws forbid the use of jewels and embroidery, limit the expence of funerals, and oblige all the citizens to walk on foot in the streets, carriages being allowed only in the country.— These laws, which are regarded in France as too se∣vere, nay, almost barbarous and inhuman, by no means abridge the real conveniences of life, which are always to be obtained at little expence; they retrench only the pageantry of it, which contri∣butes not to happiness, and often produces ruin, without any advantage.

There is, perhaps, no where so many happy marriages: Geneva has, in this respect, the start of our manners at least two centuries.—The re∣straints upon luxury remove the fear of a multi∣tude of children; and, by this means, luxury is not as in France, one of the greatest obstacles to population.

Geneva has an university, which they call an academy, where youth are educated without ex∣pence: The professors are eligible to offices of state—Many of them have become magistrates, and this privilege contributes much to keep up the emulation and same of the academy.

Page  172Their public library is a well chosen collection of books, consisting of twenty-six thousand vo∣lumes, and a great number of manuscripts. The books are lent to all the citizens, every one reads, and informs himself: and by this means, the peo∣ple of Geneva are better instructed than any where else. They find none of those inconveniencies which we suppose would follow the same indul∣gence among us; perhaps the Genevois and our politicians may be both in the right.

All the sciences, and most of the arts, have been cultivated with so much success at Geneva, that it is surprizing to see the list of learned men and ar∣tists of every kind, which this city has produced within the last two ages—It has even had the good fortune sometimes to be the residence of celebrated strangers, whom its agreable situation, and the liberty it enjoys, have invited to retire thither. M. de Voltaire, who has resided there for the last seven years, finds, among these republicans, the same marks of esteem and consideration which he has received from so many monarchs.

The eccle••astical constitution of Geneva is pure Presbyterianism; no bishops nor canons;—Not that they disapprove of episcopacy, but as they have no faith in the divine right of bishops, they think Pas∣tors, not quite so rich and important as bishops, agree better with a small republic.

The ministers are either pastors, like our parish priests, or postulans as our priests without bene∣fice. The revenue of the pastors does not amount to above 1200 livres, without any casual profits: The state makes this allowance.—The church has nothing.

The speech of Charles Turner, Esq. Member of Parlia∣ment for the City of York, to the Electors of West∣minster, from the Hustings in Westminster Hall, on Thursday the 6th of April, 1780,

I FEEL a satisfaction in addressing so numerous and respectable a body of my countrymen, that Page  109cannot be animated by a slavish mind. I have ever opposed the torrent of corruption, and the inroads of arbitrary power; and though I have been unsuccessful, yet with your assistance, I will fight and conquer. Corruption and tyranny can never stand against the virtuous efforts of a free people: be firm, be resolute and unanimous; assert your birth-right. Annual Parliaments, and an equal representation, are privileges inherent in the constitution; but if you do not think yourselves free with obtaining that object, you have a right to infist on what government you please. Laws were made for the governed, not the governor; and all government originates with the people. If you chuse to be slaves, you may submit to an unlimited monarchy, or an oppressive aristocracy; if you wish to be free, you have a right to insist on a de∣mocracy, or you have a right to form a republic. Don't tell me of the power of Parliament, or the power of the Crown; all power originates with yourselves, and if the Crown or the Parliament abuse that power you have invested them with, you have a right to re-assume it; you are the lords of the creation, not the slaves of power: you are the masters, and we are only your servants, delegated and employed by you to do your business; and till you pay your servants, as was anciently the custom, they will never act to your advantage; if you do not pay them, the Crown will, and then they be∣come the servants of the Crown, and no longer the servants of the people. An honest man can have no interest but that of his country in coming to parliament; and if he sacrifices his ease and retire∣ment to the duty of a senator, his expences at least ought to be reimbursed by his country. You now pay your members with a vengeance, for enslav∣ing you, and picking your pockets: but if you would once pay them yourselves, you would no longer complain of oppression: Act with spirit Page  110and resolution; insist upon your privileges, and I will meet you at Runny Mead. I love the poor, I divide my fortune with them, and I will die with them; the poor man's labour is the rich man's wealth; and without your toil, a kingdom would be worth nothing. While I am free, you never shall be slaves. God bless the People!

Observations of Charles Turner, Esq. Member of Par∣liament for the City of York, in the Debate in the House of Commons, April 13, 1780. on the Bill for preventing Revenue Officers from voting at Elections.

HE contended, that the House was bound to pass the Bill; that they must do it, the people of England had petitioned for it, and who would gainsay the people of England? They would have their way, they had a right to it, for the constitution of this country was a republic. He repeated it, he said, in the face of all the Crown lawyers, and let them make the most of it, a republic, and one of the finest in the world! He had held this language to the people in Westminster Hall, and he would hold it every where. Where the Monarch was limited by the same laws which governed the subject, it certainly was a republic, and nothing else.

A LESSON FOR VENAL PARLIAMENTS: The Speech that was spoken by OLIVER CROMWELL' when he dissolved the Long Parliament.

IT is high time for me to put an end to your sit∣ting in this place, which you have dishonoured by your contempt of all virtue, and defiled by your practice of every vice: Ye are a factious crew, and enemies to all good government: Ye are a pack of mercenary wretches, and would, like Esau, sell your country for a mess of pottage; and, like Judas, be∣tray Page  111your GOD for a few pieces of money. Is there a single virtue now remaining amongst you? Is there one vice you do not possess? Ye have no more religion than my horse: Gold is your God. Which of you have not bartered your conscience for bribes? Is there a man amongst you that has the least care for the good of the commonwealth? Ye sordid prostitutes! have ye not defiled this sacred place, and turned the Lord's temple into a den of thieves, by your immoral principles and wicked practices? Ye are grown intolerably odious to the whole nation. You were deputed here by the people to get grievances redressed, are not yourselves become the greatest grievance? Your country therefore calls upon me to cleanse this Augean stable, by putting a final period to your iniquitous proceedings in this House, and which, by God's help, and the strength he has given me, I am now come to do. I command ye, therefore, upon the peril of your lives, to depart immediately out of this place. Go, get ye out, make haste, ye venal slaves, be gone! So take away that shining bauble there, and lock up the doors.

THE INHABITANTS OF HELL. From a Pamphlet, entitled "The Rights of the Devil."

THESE (that is the priests) are the most nu∣merous of all Lucifer's subjects, except the military, for next to the clergy, the military are the most devoted, which may be seen by the ardor they discover on all occasions in the service of their grand master and monarch, Lucifer. Nothing diminishes the zeal of soldiers, no hardships or calamities can intimidate them from the pursuit of their master's interest. Captivity, prisons, fetters, chains, slavery, or death, give no check to their activity; but havock and devastation are the works Page  112of their hands. See how these heroes leave every thing near and dear behind them. Their trades are nothing in comparison to the intrinsic acquisitions of the soldier, who sacrifices every thing to the pleasure of murdering his fellow-creatures. How many of these English Sans Culottes have left twenty-five, and even thirty shillings per week, within these six months past, to gain in return six∣pence a day, to be food for gun-powder, and to distinguish themselves as the best friends and warmest advocates for Satan's kingdom. Mark! what disinterestedness! Surely Lucifer has some right to such property as this! Only examine their faes and their figures, both will declare to you whom they serve, and whose they are. Their pole complexions, their tawny countenances, their tanned hides; in short, the whole of their meagre bodies have more the appearance of carcases or ske∣letons, than of human figures. Their bodies, I say, loaded with wounds, exhausted by labours which they have undergone, with distempers which con∣sume them, with vermin which gnaw them while alive, with hunger which devours them, with ex∣cessive heat, and rigorous cold, which they expe∣rience and endure with courage and delight, for a poor and wretched stipend, plainly shew that the most powerful and predominant of all their pas∣sions, is their desire for the infernal regions. And this is further confirmed by the ardent exclama∣tions with which they conclude every sentence they pronounce; such as, The Devil take me! The Devil seize me! The Devil choak me! The Devil fly away with me! &c. &c. Which ejacula∣tions certainly express their earnest wish to go to Lucifer's kingdom. The Devil will never deny his right to such property as they are.

I had like to have omitted informing you, that the military are accompanied with their officers, even in Hell: and why not? They are fond of Page  113leading the dance with them on Earth, and surely ought to partake of their pleasures in Hell. They are led by their officers by thousands every day, with colours flying, music playing, and drums beating, amidst the acclamations of all who see them, on their journey to Pluto's regions. There is no exception of persons in the military, they go unanimously, hand in hand. There you see them travelling in social union, with wonderful contrast, generalissimo and private, general and drummer, duke and corporal, prince and serjeant, kings and serjeant-majors, emperors and adjutants, in most parts of Europe, vieing with each other in their various tactical knowledge, to discover who has the greatest ability, in getting tenants in the greatest numbers, to occupy Beelzebub's kingdom. Witness the scenes now exhibiting on the other side the water, what bravery is displayed by the English, Dutch, Prussians, Austrians, Hessians, Ha∣noverians, &c. of all ranks and degrees, from the prince to the private, in order to transport them∣selves to the infernal regions; and none can be more deserving than those who take up the sword in defence of their common master, for the express purpose of peopling his kingdom. Go on, then, ye veterans! hide your trusty blades in the bowels of your bethren! your laurels will cleave to your brows in never fading and glowing colours: and Satan shall crown you with everlasting honours!

Ignorance the Foundation of unequal Governments, and fostered by them designedly.

[From "Barlow's Advice to priviledged Orders."

UNEQUAL Governments are necessarily found∣ed on ignorance, and they must be supported by ignorance; to deviate from their principle, would be voluntary suicide. The great object of Page  114their policy is to perpetuate that undisturbed igno∣rance of the people, which is the companion of poverty, the parent of crimes, and the pillar of the state.

In England, the people at large are as perfectly ignorant of the acts of Parliament, after they are made, as they possibly can be before. They are printed by one man only, who is called the king's printer—in the old German character, which few men can read—and sold at a price that few can afford to pay. But, lest some scraps or comments upon them should come to the people, through the medium of public news-papers, every such paper is stamped with a heavy duty: and an act of parlia∣ment is made, to prevent men from lending their papers to each other; so that, not one person in a hundred sees a news-paper once in a year. If a man at the bottom of Yorkshire discovers, by in∣stinct, that a law is made which is interesting for him to know, he has only to make a journey to London, find out the king's printer, pay a penny a page for the law, and learn the German alphabet. He is then prepared to spell out his duty.

As to the general system of the laws of the land, on which all property depends, no man in the kingdom knows them, and no man pretends to know them. They are a fathomless abyss, that exceeds all human faculties to sound. They are studied, not to be understood, but to be disputed; not to give information, but to breed confusion. The man whose property is depending on a suit at law, dares not to look into the gulph that separates him from the wished-for decision; he has no con∣fidence in himself, nor in reason, nor in justice; he mounts on the back of a lawyer, like one of Mr. urke's heroes of chivalry, between the wings of a grffin, and trusts the pilotage to a man, who is su∣perior to himself only in the confidence which results from having nothing at stake.

Page  115

On the Injustice of taking Fees from Persons acquitted in Courts of Justice.

[From "The Candid Philosopher."]

A MAN suspected of a felonious action, is taken up, sent to goal, used there in a barbarous manner, yet when brought to his trial is found per∣fectly innocent. A man of common sense, uprac∣tised in the wisdom of our laws, would naturally imagine he would be now discharged. But no such thing; he must be remanded to prison to undergo the same harsh treatment he received before his trial, unless he pays the fees that are demanded of him.— They are the poorest people on whom sus∣picions generally fall, and who, so far from being able to pay goaler's fees, could scarcely maintain themselves in prison before the proof of their in∣nocence appeared. How cruel, therefore, after punishing an innocent person with imprisonment, making him lose his business and his character, to rob him of his property, under the name of paying fees!—O shame! shame! shame!

Whether the Balance of Dominion in Land be the natural Cause of Empire?

[From Harrington's Oceana.]

IF a man having one hundred pounds a year may keep one servant, or have one man at his command, then having one hundred times so much, he may keep one hundred servants; and this multiplied by a thousand, he may have one hundred thousand men at his command. Now, that the single person, or nobility of any country in Europe, that had but half so many men at com∣mand, would be king or prince, is that which I think no man will doubt. But no money no Switzers, as the French speak: if the money be flown, so are the men also. Though riches in general have Page  116wings, and be apt to bate, yet those in land are the most hooded and tied to the perch, whereas those in money have the least hold, and are the swiftest in flight. A bank, where the money takes not wing, but to come home seized, or like a coy duck, may well be great; but the treasure of the Indies going out, and not upon returns, makes no bank. Whence a bank never paid an army; or paying an army soon became no bank. But where a prince or nobility has an estate in land, the revenue whereof will defray this charge, there their men are plant∣ed, have toes that are roots, and arms that bring forth what fruit you please.

Thus a single person is made, or a nobility makes a king, not with difficulty or any great pru∣dence, but with ease, the rest coming home, as the ox that not only knows his master's crib, but must starve or repair to it. Nor for the same reason is government acquired with more ease than it is pre∣served; that is, if the foundation of property be in land. but if in morey, lightly come, lightly go. The reason why a single person, or the nobility that has one hundred thousand men, or half so many at command, will have the government, is, that the estate in land, whereby they are able to maintain so many, in any European territory, must overbalance the rest that remains to the people, at least three parts in four, by which means they are no more able to dispute the government with him or them, than your servant is with you. Now, for the same reason, if the people hold three parts in four of the territory, it is plain there can nei∣ther be any single person nor nobility able to dis∣pute the government with them; in this case, therefore, except force be interposed, they govern themselves. So by this computation of the balance of property, or dominion in land, you have ac∣cording to the threefold foundation of property, the root or generation of the threefold kind of go∣vernment or empire.

Page  117If one man be sole landlord of a territory, or overbalance the whole people, three parts in four, or thereabouts, he is Grand Seignior; for so the Turk, not from his empire, but his property, is called; and the empire in this case, is absolute monarchy.

If the few, or a nobility, or a nobility with a clergy, be landlords to such a proportion as over∣balances the people in the like manner, they may make whom they please king; or, if they be not pleased with their king, down with him, and set up whom they like better; a HENRY the Fourth, or the Seventh, a GUISE, a MONTFORT, a NEVIL, or a PORTER, should they find that best for their own ends and purposes: For, as not the balance of the king, but that of the nobility, in this case, is the cause of the government, so not the estate or the riches of the prince or captain, but his virtue or ability, or fitness for the ends of the nobility, acquires that command or office. This for aristo∣cracy or mixed monarchy. But if the whole people be landlords, or hold the land so divided among them, that no one man or number of men within the compass of the few, or aristocracy over∣balance them, it is a commonwealth. Such is the branch in the root, or the balance of property na∣turally producing empire; which not confuted, no man shall be able to batter my superstructures, and which confuted I lay down my arms; till then, if the cause necessarily precede the effect, property must have a being before empire; or, beginning with it, must be still first in order.

Property comes to have a being before empire or government two ways, either by a natural or violent revolution. Natural revolution happens from within, or by commerce, as when a govern∣ment erected upon one balance, that for example of a nobility or a clergy, through the decay of their estates comes to alter to another balance; which Page  118alteration in the root of property leaves all to con∣fusion, or produces a new branch of government, according to the kind or nature of the root. Vio∣lent revolution happens from without, or by arms, as when upon conquest there follows confiscation. Confiscation again is of three kinds; when the captain taking all to himself, plants his army, by way of military colonies, benefices, or timars, which was the policy of MAHOMET; or when the captain has some sharers, or a nobility that divides with him which was the policy introduced by the Goths and Vandals; or when the captain divides the inheritance by lots, or otherwise, to the whole people; which policy was instituted by GOD or MOSES in the commonwealth of Israel. This tri∣ple distribution, which from natural or violent re∣volution returns as to the generation of empire to the same thing, that is to the nature of the balance already stated and demonstrated.

ABRIDGMENT OF ROMAN HISTORY.

ROMULUS and REMUS being sent by their grandfather Numetor, from Alba, at the head of a colony, to seek a new settlement, quarrelled about the choice of a spot where they should fix, and build them a city: Romulus chusing mount Palatine, and Remus mount Aventine. Remus is said to have lost his life in this dispute. The city was therefore built on mount Palatine, and, in compliment to its founder, called Rome. As Romulus had not taken upon him the chief com∣mand of the colony for any longer time than while the city was building, he, as soon as the work was finished, submitted the form of its future go∣vernment to the choice of the people, and, calling the citizens together, harangued them in words to this effect:

"If all the strength of cities lay in the height of their ramparts, or the depth of their ditches, Page  119we should have great reason to be in fear for that which we have now built. Are there in reality any walls too high to be scaled by a valiant ene∣my? And of what use are ramparts in intestine divisions? They may serve for a defence against sudden incursions from abroad; but it is by cou∣rage and prudence chiefly, that the invasions of foreign enemies are repelled: and by unanimity, sobriety, and justice, that domestic seditions are prevented. Cities fortified by the strongest bul∣warks have been seen to yield to force from with∣out, or to tumults from within. An exact mi∣litary discipline, and a steady observance of civil policy, are the surest barriers against these evils. But there is still another point of great importance to be considered: the prosperity of some rising colonies, and the speedy ruin of others, have in a great measure been owing to their form of go∣vernment. Was there but one manner of ruling states and cities that could make them happy, the choice would not be difficult. But I have learnt, that of the various forms of government among the Greeks and Barbarians, there are three which are highly extolled by those who have experi∣enced them; and yet, that no one of these is in all respects perfect, but each of them has some innate and incurable defect. Chuse ye, then, in what manner this city shall be governed. Shall it be by one man? Shall it be by a select number of the wisest among us? or shall the legislative power be in the people? As for me, I shall submit to any form of adminstration you shall please to establish. As I think myself not unworthy to command, so neither am I unwilling to obey. Your having chosen me to be the leader of this colony, and your calling the city after my name, are honours sufficient te content me; honours, of which, liv∣ing or dead, I can never be deprived."

Romulus was chosen king; and Rome was go∣verned by kings for upwards of 240 years, till the Page  120expulsion of Tarquin the Second, which was occa∣sioned by his son Sextus ravishing Lucretia, the wife of Collatinus, a noble Roman. Lucretia, up∣on receiving this injury, sent for her husband, who was then in the camp at Ardea with Tarquin, and for several of his friends, and having informed them of the outrage she had received, and engaged them to revenge it, stabbed herself to the heart, and died before them. The Romans had long groaned under the tyranny and cruelty of the Tarquins, and were therefore glad to lay hold on so flagrant and outrageous an insult, to shake off their yoke. The famous Junius Brutus, who for some reasons had masked himself, and concealed great talents, under the appearance of idiotism, suddenly threw off his disguise, and, going near to the dying lady, drew the poignard out of her bosom, and shewing it all bloody to the assembly, to their great astonishment thus addressed them:

"Yes, noble lady, I swear by this blood, which was once so pure, and which nothing but royal villainy could have polluted, that I will pursue Lucius Tarquinius the Proud, his wicked wife, and their children, with fire and sword, nor will I ever suffer any of that family, or of any other whatever, to be king in Rome: Ye Gods, I call you to witness this my oath!—There, Romans, turn your eyes to that sad spectacle—the daughter of Lucretius, Collatinus's wife—she died by her own hand. See there a noble lady, whom the lust of a Tarquin reduced to the necessity of being her own executioner, to attest her innocence. Hos∣pitably entertained by her as a kinsman of her hus∣band's, Sextus, the perfidious guest, became her brutal ravisher. The chaste, the generous Lucretia could not survive the insult. Glorious woman! But once only treated as a slave, she thought life no longer to be endured. Lucretia, a woman, disdained a life that depended upon a tyrant's will; Page  121and shall we, shall men, with such an example before our eyes, and after five-and-twenty years of igno∣minous servitude, shall we, through a fear of dying, defer one single instant to assert our liberty? No, Romans, now is the time; the favourable moment we have so long waited for is come. Tarquin is not at Rome. The patricians are at the head of the enter∣prize. The city is abundantly provided with men, arms, and all things necessary. There is nothing want∣ing to secure the success, if our own courage does not fail us. And shall those warriors, who have ever been so brave, when foreign enemies were to be subdued, or when conquests were to be made to gratify the ambition and avarice of Tarquin, be then only cow∣ards, when they are to deliver themselves from sla∣very? Some of you, perhaps, are intimidated by the army which Tarquin now commands. The soldiers, you imagine will take the part of their general: Banish so groundless a fear. The love of liberty is natural to all men. Your fellow citizens in the camp feel the weight of oppression, with as quick a sense, as you that are in Rome. They will as eagerly seize the occasion of throwing of the yoke. But, let us grant there may be some among them who through baseness of spirit, or a bad education, will be dis∣posed to favour the tyrant. The number of these can be but small, and we have means sufficient in our hands to reduce them to reason. They left us hos∣tages more dear to them than life. Their wives, their children, their fathers, their mothers are in the city. Courage, Romans, the gods are for us! those Gods, whose temples and altars the impious Tarquin has profaned by sacrifices and libations made with pol∣luted hands, polluted with blood, and with num∣berless unexpiated crimes committed against his sub∣jects. Ye Gods, who protected our forefathers! ye Genii, who watch for the preservation and glory of Rome! do you inspire us with courage and unani∣mity Page  122in this glorious cause, and we will, to our last breath, defend your worship from all profanation."

[To be continued in following Numbers.]

Eccl. iv. 1, 2, 3.
So I returned, and considered all the Oppressions that are done under the Sun: and behold the TEARS of such as were OPPRESSED, and they had NO COMFORTER; and on the side of their Oppressors there was POWER, but they had no Comforter. Where∣fore, I praised the dead which are already dead, more than the living which are yet alive. Yea, better is he than both they, which hath not yet been, who hath not seen the EVIL WORK that is done under the Sun.

THE following extract, from a very interesting work, lately published, intitled "Travels in the Western Hebrides, by the Rev. John Lane Buchanan," will shew some few of the hardships suffered by our brethren in one part of this free and happy nation. It may be proper to premise, that the Islands here spoken of are not those which lie next to the coast of Scotland, but the Western Abudae, a long chain of Islands, about seventy miles farther west in the Atlantic Ocean. It may be also proper to mention, that altho' the author has adopted the title of Tra∣vels, this work is the result of observation made by him, during his residence in these Islands, in quali∣ty of Missionary Minister from the Church of Scot∣land. from 1782 to 1790.

There are in these Islands an unfortunate and numerous class of men, known under the name of Scallags.

The Scallag, whether male or female, is a poor being. who, for mere subsistence, becomes a predial slave to another, whether a subtenant, a tacksman, Page  123or a laird. The Scallag builds his own hut, with sods and boughs of trees, and if he is sent from one part of the country to another, he moves off his sticks; and, by means of these, forms a new hut in another place. He is, however, in most places, en∣couraged by the possession of the walls of a former but, which he covers in the best way be can with his old sticks, stubble, and fern. Five days in the week he works for his master; the sixth is allowed to himself, for the cultivation of some scrap of land, on the edge of some moss or moor; on which he raises a little kail or colewort, barley and potatoes. These articles boiled up in one mash, and often without salt, are his only food; except in those sea∣sons and days when he can catch some fish, which he is also obliged not unfrequently to eat without bread or salt. The only bread he tastes is a cake, made of the flower of barley. He is allowed coarse shoes, with tartan hose, and a coarse coat, with a blanket or two for cloathing. It may occur to an English reader, that, as the Scallag works only five days out of seven for his master, he has two to pro∣vide for himself. But it is to be recollected, that throughout the whole of Scotland, and all its ap∣pendages, Sunday, or the sabbath as it is called, is celebrated by a total cessation from all labour, and all amusements, as well as by religious exercises.

The tacksmen and subtenants, formerly on an equal footing, or nearly so, were wont to plead their cause on equal terms before a common chief. At present they are obliged to be much more sub∣missive to their tacksman than ever they were in former times to their lairds or lords. Formerly they were a free, animated, and bold people, command∣ing respect for their undanted courage, and repell∣ing injuries from whatever quarter they came, both by words and actions. But now they must ap∣proach even the tacksmen, with cringing humility, heartless and discouraged, with tattered rags, hun∣gry Page  124bellies and downcast looks, carrying their own implements of husban try for ten or twelve miles backward and forward, over hills and mountains, to do the work of the tacksmen; and must either sit we in their cloaths all night in a dirty kitchen, or sleep in dirty cloaths, particularly in Luskintire in Harris, exposed to be trampled on by swine, where the kitchen is commonly the stye. Formerly a Highlander would have drawn his dirk against even a laird, if he had subjected him to the indig∣nity of a blow; at present any tyrannical tacksman may strike a Scallag, or even a subtenant, with per∣fect impunity. What degree of spirit and virtue is to be expected, from a people so humbled, so en∣staved? What degree of courage, or even inclinati∣tion to repel an invading enemy?

If we have not money
(some of these tacksmen have been known to say,)
we have men enough: let us wear them well while they are in our power.
In short they treat them like beasts of burthen; and in all respects like slaves attached to the soil, as they cannot ob∣tain new habitations, on account of combinations among the tacksmen, and are entirely at the mercy of the laird or tacksman.

The master or his overseer, often on the most frivolous pretences, abandons himself to bursts of passion, and with hands, feet and rods, breaks the bones of men and women too. This is not an ex∣aggerated picture. The broken ribs of one young maid, named Macklellan, from the village of Cluar, attest the fact, which was committed by a tacksman, assuming the title of DOCTOR. This same doctor almost took the life of another innocent maid from Shilebost; though she gave no other offence, than that of tarrying a little longer than he wished, at her mistresses desire, to finish something she had in hand.

Page  125

Better to trust a whole People with the power of doing Wrong, than one only.

(From Dodsley's Poems.)

YET vainly would despotic will conclude,
That force may sway the erring multitude.
Justice 'tis own'd, should ever guide the free,
But pow'r of wrong, In all, is liberty;
And for whatever purposes restrain'd,
A nation is enslav'd that may be chain'd;
Heaven gives to all a liberty of choice,
A people's good requires a people's voice:
Man's surest guide where different views agree,
From private hate and privaet int'rest free.
Fatal their change from such who rashly fly,
To the hard grasp of guiding tyranny!
Soon shall they find, when will is arm'd with might,
Injustice wield the sword, though drawn for right.

Lines addressed to the Grand Conspirators AGAINST HUMAN LIBERTY.

DELUDED ravagers! enslavers of Mankind,
All your ambitious dreams too late (tho' soon) you'll find,
Must end in freedom's triumph—slavery dismay—
No more shall despotism darken reason's day!
Ah! son's of regal folly and inflated pride
Lay all your butchering, murdering schemes aside
Let not your hands again in human blood be dy'd!
Kindness—not cruelty—implies parental care:
If ye are fathers—let actions shew ye are!
Not see, inhumanly, your children wounded! slain!
Grief and toil their portion, while your's is all the gain.
Page  126Sunk in sensual pleasure, you leave them nought but pain.

A GOVERNMENT OF CITIZENS IS INVULNERABLE. FROM HARRINCTON'S OCEANA.

ALL government, as implied by what has been already shewn, is of these three kinds: A go∣vernment of servants: A government of subjects; or A government of citizens. The first is absolute monar∣chy, as that of Turkey: The second aristocratical monarchy, as that of France: The third a common∣wealth, as those of Israel, of Rome, of Holland. Now to follow MACHIAVEL (in part) of these, the government of servants is the harder to be con∣quered, and the easier to be held: The government of subjects is the easter to be conquered and the harder to be held. To which I shall presume to add, that the government of citizens is both the hardest to be conquered, and the hardest to be held.

My author's reasons, why a government of ser∣vants is the hardest to be conquered, come to this, that they are under perpetual discipline and com∣mand, void of such interests and factions as have hands or power to hold upon advantages or innova∣tion; whence he that invades the Turk must trust to his own strength, and not rely upon disorders in the government, or forces which he shall be sure enough to find united.

His reasons why this government, being once broken, is easily held, are, that the armies once past hope of rallying, there being no such thing as families hanging together, or nobility to stir up their dependants to further reluctancy for the present, or to preserve themselves by complacence with the conquerors, for future discontents or advantages, Page  127he that has won the garland has no more to do but to extinguish the royal line, and wear it ever after in security. For the people having been always slaves, are such whose condition he may better, in which case they are gainers by their conqueror, but can never make a worse, and therefore they lose nothing by him. Hence ALEXANDER having con∣quered the Persian empire, he and his captains af∣ter him could hold it without the least dispute, except it arose among themselves. Hence MAHO∣MET the second having taken Constantinople, and put Palaeologus the Greek emperor (whose govern∣ment was of like nature with the Persian) together with his whole family, to the sword, the Turk has held that empire without reluctancy.

On the other side, the reasons why a government of subjects is easier conquered, are these: That it is supported by a nobility so antient, so powerful, and of such hold and influence upon the people, that the king without danger, if not ruin to him∣self or the throne (an example whereof was given in HENRY the seventh of England,) can neither in∣vade their privileges, nor level their estates; which remaining, they have power upon every discontent to call in an enemy, as ROBERT Count of Artois did the English, and the Duke of Guise the Spaniard, into France.

The reasons why a government of subjects being so easily conquered, is nevertheless harder to be held, are these: that the nobility being soon out of countenance in such a case, and repenting them∣selves of such a bargain, have the same means in their hands, whereby they brought in the enemy, to drive him out, as those of France did both the English and the Spaniards.

For the government of citizens, as it is of two kinds, an equal or an unequal commonwealth, the reason why it is the hardest to be conquered, are also of two kinds; as first, the reasons why a go∣vernment Page  128of citizens, where the commonwealth is equal, is hardest to be conquered, are, that the invader of such a society must not only trust to his own strength, insomuch as the commonwealth being equal, he must needs find them united, but in re∣gard, that such citizens being all soldiers or trained up to their arms, which they use not for the defence of slavery, but of LIBERTY (A CONDITION NOT IN THIS WORLD TO BE BETTERED); they have more especially upon this occasion, the highest soul of courage, and (if their territory be of any extent) the vastest body of a well disciplined militia that is possible in nature: wherefore AN EXAMPLE OF SUCH A ONE OVERCOME BY THE ARMS OF A MO∣NARCH, IS NOT TO BE FOUND IN THE WORLD. And if some small city of this frame has happened to be vanquished by a potent commonwealth, this is her prerogative, her towers are her funeral pile, and she expires in her own flame, leaving nothing to the con∣queror but her ashes, as Saguntum overwhelmed by Carthage, and Numantia by Rome.

A DESCRIPTION OF PRINCE LUCIFER's SUBJECTS. (From a Pamphlet entitled: The Rights of the Devil.)

ALL those men whatever description or what∣ever country they may belong to, in whom the Devil as right and property, and over whom he extends his influence, are like wolves, easily dis∣tinguished from the sheep, to which he lays claim: because there is a particular mark whereby you may know those ravenous beasts. Moreover, you will always see them exceedingly active in their monarch Lucifer's service; they are invested with full power to oppress and torture human nature, for the sake of plundering them. Their iron hearts Page  129are dead to the feelings of humanity; they regard not the cries of the fatherless, neither does the cause of the widow come near them. Cast an eye to the cruelties daily committed in the slve trade; reflect for a moment on the many thousands of wretched Africans, who are tortared out of existence year∣ly, in order to exact from their labour, to which in justice they have not the least claim. Some in the various modes of obtaining them; others suf∣focated in the floating bastiles, by the stench and corrupted air, which they breathe in the hold, while being conveyed to the land of slavery and death, in the West Indies; and those who survive the shocking treatment they experience while on board, or are not swept away by disease, have only a worse fate awaiting them; worked without intermission, and flogged without commiseration, they are hurried to their eternal home, by those savage monsters who have the charge of them. Thus are these innocent beings murdered by the agents and servants of the devil, whom they adore and serve, and whose right and property they are.

Is not the influence of Satan very visible in some other illustrious characters, the avowed enemies of the human race, who claim and lay hold upon the tenth of the product of the earth, which have been increased by improvement, and produced by the sweating brows of other men? Can there be any justice in such plundering as this? or rather, is not that man a better character who only stops you in the highway once in your life, and exacts from you your purse? You will certainly answer these questions in the affirmitive, and declare that we are completely humbugged by the priesthood. Hence arises the necessity of priestcraft to blind the eyes of the people, and render them totally ignorant and unaquainted in this important fact, that a priesthood is, and always has been a curse Page  130to all nations of the earth. Ignorance in the mul∣titude is the chief support and only nutriment by which the vmity and pride of the clergy is fed. As tythe pigs fill their filthy sties and black waist-coasts of corruption. Ah! deluded swinish mul∣titude, typified by the tythe pig; highly emblema∣tical of your wallowing in the mire of church and state, while the idle and dissipated beings who op∣press you, are rolling in luxury and debauchery, at the expence of your delusion. How long you will you not call to Belzebub to remove from you your tormentors, and take them, as his right, to his eternal kingdom?

There is another class of men, in whom Luci∣fer has great right, and are thus described by Lord Chatham: "There is," says he,

a set of men in London, who are known to live in riot and luxu∣ry, upon the plunder of the ignorant, the innocent and the helpless; upon that part of the commu∣nity which stands in most need of, and best de∣serves the care and protection of the legislature. To me, my lords, whether they be miserable jobbers of Change-alley, or the lofty Asiatic plunderers of Leadenhall street, they are all equally detestable. I care but little whether a man walks on foot, or is drawn by six or eight horses; if his luxury be supported by the plun∣der of his country, I despise and abhor him. My lords, while I had the honour of serving his majesty, I never ventured to look at the Treasu∣ry, but from a distance, it is a business I am unfit for, and to which I never could have submitted. The little I know of it, has not served to raise my opinion of what is vulgarly called the mo∣nied interest, I mean that blood-sucker that muck∣worm, which calls itself the friend of govern∣ment, which pretends to serve this or that ad∣ministration, and may be purchased on the same terms by any administration. Under this de∣scription Page  131I include the whole race of commission∣ers, jobbers, contractors, clothiers, and remit∣ters.
To these may be added, all placemen (in general) pensioners, gapers, and expectants, col∣lectors of excise and customs, proprietors of mini∣sterial newspapers, humane press-gangs, &c. &c. all come under one class or domination of Lucifer's loyal, and loving subjects, who devote their whole lives to the service of their master.

To enumerate all the various characters in the different parts of the world, over whom the devil exercises a special right and influence, would re∣quire an age. Yet you may observe. that I have pointed out to you, some of the most conspicuous persons who are the destined inhabitants of Luci∣fer's kingdom, from the regal oppressor to the meanest peasant. What mean ye, that ye beat my peo∣ple to pieces, and GRIND the faces of the poor? saith the Lord God of Hosts. Isaiah iii. 15—Therefore my people are gone into captivity, BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE; and their honourable men are famished, and their multitude (i. e. swinish multi∣tude) dried up with thirst. Therefore HELL hath en∣larged herself, and opened her mouth without measure, and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it. Isaith v. 13. For the leaders of this people CAUSE them to err: and THEY that are led of them ARE destroyed, Isaiah ix. 16. Thus you see the people are destroyed, because they rid not the earth of such hypocritical leaders, or governors, tyrants, or false teachers, and chuse from among themselves men to rule over them. Wo unto them that decree unrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed: To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the RIGHT from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may ro•• the fatherless! Isaiah, x. 1. 2. Hence, it appears, that to take away the rights of the people is a sin, but to refuse Page  132to restore them when demanded is still worse; therefore HELL hath enlarged herself to receive them.

WHO WOULD NOT BE A SOLDIER?!!!

—YOU must drink the King of BULGARIA'S health, said the soldiers; he is the best of kings. Most willingly, replied Candide, and drank. Now you are a brave fellow, said they, you are become his support, his defender, one of the heroes of Bulgaria; your fortune is made, your fameeternal. They then put handcuffs on his wrists, conducted him to the regiment. There they made him turn to the right, wheel to the left, shoulder his musket, rest upon his arms, present, fire, march and counter-march; in return for which the drill serjeant gave him some thirty strokes with the cane, The next day he performed his exer∣cise better, and received only twenty. On the morrow they gave him but ten, and all his com∣rades regarded him as a prodigy of genius.

The astonished Candide could not conceive by what enchantment he had become a hero. One pleasant morning in spring, when the birds were singing, and the trees beginning to bloom, he thought proper to take a walk. Proceeding in a right line, and supposing it was the privilege of the human species, like other animals, to make use of their legs, he had not gone above two leagues, before six other heroes, each of six feet high, overtook him, bound him, and threw him into a dungeon. He was juridically asked, whe∣ther he preferred being thirty-six times flogged through the regiment, or to suffer twelve balls to pass through his brains? In vain did he assert the freedom of the will, and affirm, that he pre∣ferred neither the one nor the other: chuse he Page  133must, and, in virtue of that gift of God, which is called Liberty, he concluded in favour of flogging. He was twice brought to the halbards, where he each time received five hundred lashes, which slay∣ed him from the hips to the nape of the neck, and laid the muscles and nerves all bare. As they were proceeding to the third course, CANDIDE, unable to endure more, requested for God's sake, they would have the goodness to blow out his brains. His petition was favourably received; but, as he was kneeling blindfold, the King of the Bulgarians happened to come to the parade, and enquired concerning his crime. As this king was a man of great genius, he comprehended from the story they told him, that CANDIDE was a young metaphysi∣cian, ignorant of the world, and he granted his pardon; which clemency has been and will be re∣corded in every newspaper, every history, and eve∣ry age. A skilful surgeon iu three weeks cured CANDIDE by use of the emollients which DIO∣SCOIDES prescribes. The skin again began to cover his back, and he was able to march, when the King of the Bulgarians gave battle to the King of the Abarians.

Nothing could be so charming, so dazzling, so well disciplined, so well appointed as the two ar∣mies. The trumpets, drums, hautboys, fifes, and cannon formed a concert of such harmony as Hell itself never equalled. To begin, the artillery laid low about six thousand men on each side. The musquetry next dispatched between nine and ten thousand knaves, who infested the surface of this best of possible worlds; and the bavonet in its turn, was the adequate cause of the death of as many more. The whole amount was at least thirty thou∣sand souls. CANDIDE, who trembled like a philo∣sopher, hid himself as well as he could during this heroic butchery. At length, while the two kings ordered Te deum to be sung in their two camps, he Page  134thought proper to depart and reason elsewhere on causes and effects. He passed over mountains of the dying and the dead. The first village he came to belonged to the Abaians; it was reeking with smoke, having been burnt by the Bulgarians, ac∣cording to the laws of nations. Here stood old men maimed by the enemy. gazing on their mur∣dered ives with their dead children extended on their bleeding bosoms. There lay virgins with their wombs ripped open, after having appeased the natural appetites of certain heroes, giving up the ghost. Others half ro••ed, called aloud for one to come and dispatch them entirely. Here the brains of men were scattered, here their arms, here their legs and here their mangled trunks. CANDIDE fled with all his might to another village, that be∣lo••ed to the Bulgarians, which the heroes of Aba∣ria had treated in much the same manner. At length. marching over limbs still trembling, hearts still plpitating, and fires yet unextinguished, he luckily escaped from the theatre of war and glory.

From the Candid Philosopher, printed in the year 1778. ON THE PROCRESS OF LIBETRY IN FRANCE.

HOWEVER the present age may have receded from genuine piety, it has certainly mde the most rapid advances in a freedom and liberality of sentiment, which do honour to human nature. The French nation has particularly distinguished itself in this respect. Its writers display a vigour of thought they have till now been almost strangers to. They plead the cause of human nature, and assert man's natural ights, with an energy and warmth that seem to indicate the speedy downfal of that vast fabric of superstition and error, that has hitherto so greatly obstructed the progress of free Page  135enquiry, and chilled even the emotions of huma∣nity. What writer of any nation can express him∣self with greater zeal for the sovereignty of the laws, against the blind will of the monarch, the ty∣ranny of ministers, or the clamour of a mob, than to lay this down as a just maxim? "Le glaire re∣doubtable de la justice n'a point ete deposedns les mains des magistrats, pour venger des haines parti∣uleres, ni meme pour suivre les monvemens de I indignation publique. ••et a LA LOI SEULE appartient de marquer les victimes; et si les cla∣meurs d'une multitude aveugle et passionne pou∣voint decider les juges a prononcer one Peine ca∣pitale, I innocence prenoit la place du crime. et il n'y auroit plus de surete pour le citoyen." These are just and excellent sentiments; but they are not peculiar to this writer. The greater part of his coun∣trymen now think with the same freedom, and speak with the same force. This liberal spirit has a great∣er tendency to exalt the French nation than all the military operations of their much boasted Lewis XIV. whose glories sunk, and whose victories im∣poverished, the kingdom he sought to strengthen and enrich. However, as Englishmen, we may la∣ment the dawing splendor of the French monarchy, enlighte'ed by the Sun of science; yet, as citizens of the universe, we must rejoice at the great and glorious effects produced by the genius of liberty, that can turn Siberia's deserts into Albion's fertile plains; unlock the sources of plenty and bliss, and change brutes and slaves into men and heroes!

ON A LIFE OF LABOUR.

FROM THE SAME.

WE read in many authors great encomiums on a life of labour, and of the superior blessings of peasants and hard working men, whose tempe∣rate Page  136and abstemious lives not only make them enjoy an uninterrupted state of health, but throw a crim∣son on their cheeks, and give a vigour to their bo∣dies, the sons of wealth and affluence, they tell us, may in vain sigh for. This sounds well; but I own I am doubtful of the fact.

If I compare the working part of mankind, who •••e hard and work hard. with those who eat and drink of the good "things of the earth," I think I can discern better complexions. choicer animal spris, and stronger bodies in the latter than in the former. Incessant labour, and coarse and scanty food, have certainly a tendency to weaken the bo∣dies of mankind, and wear them out before their time And this we 〈◊〉 is the ease, What becomes t••n of the fine spun theories of visionary authors. who so greatly extol a laborious life?—Why, they are destroyed, like other cobweb systems, that will not bear handling.

The personal Virtues of a Monarch are unable to secure him from contempt, if he will be led blindfold by wicked Ministers.

FROM THE SAME.

A MONARCH who will suffer himself to be directed by vicious favourites and ministers, though virtuous in himself, is, in fact, the author of their vices, and all the unhappy consequences that result from them. A monarch who is the fa∣ther of his people, should not be the dupe of a fa∣vourite. A monarch who should see and judge for himself, should not take things upon trust. If a nation, from the height of splendour and glory, should be brought by the ignorance or treachery of incapable or wicked ministers, to a state of misery and contempt, despised abroad, and at home unhap∣py—it is but poor consolation to reflect, that the Page  137king has many personal virtues. Was this imagi∣nary description to become a real picture of a nati∣on, and its virtuous monarch, I would cry out wiih Marcus, in the Tragedy of Cato,

"Curse on his virtues—they've undone his country."

MODERN MOTIVES FOR WAR.

(From Barlow's advice to the Privileged Orders.)

ONE general character will apply to much the greater part of the wars of modern times,— they are political, and not vindictive. This alone is sufficient to account for their real origin. They are wars of agreement, rather than of dissention; and the conquest is taxes. and not territory. To carry on this business. it is necessary not only to keep up the military spirit of the noblesse by titles and pensions, and to keep in pay a vast number of troops, who know no other God but their king, who lose all ideas of themselves, in contemplating their officers, and who forget the duties of a mn, to practise those of a soldier.—this is but half the operation; an essential part of the military system is to disarm the people, to hold all the functions of war, as well the arm that executes, as the will that declares it, equally above their reach. This part of the system has a douhle effect, it palsies the hand and brutalizes the mind; an habitual disuse of phy∣sical forces totally destroys the moral; and men lose at once the power of protecting themselves, and of discerning the cause of their oppression,

Page  138

ON THE GOVERNMENT OF HELL.

(From a Pamphlet entitled: The Rights of the Devil.)

WE have a long time disputed, and are not yet agreed in this point, what is the best and most advantageous form of government for any na∣tion, and for the people whereof it consists. Some are for a democracy, others for aristocracy, and others for monarchy. Although each of these opi∣nions has its favourites, and is supported by very solid reasons; it nevertheless appears certain, that monarchy prevails over the other two, because the four great empires which succeeded one another in the world, and existed near two thousand years, all adopted and followed a monarchial form of govern∣ment. And it appears to be an indisputable fact, that this is the government of the infernal empire (viz) an absolute monarchy. It is undoubtedly the best form of government for the monarch, what∣ever it may be for the subjects, because the Devil assumes the power of the whole mass of beings col∣lectively, and consequently can make what aggran∣dizement he pleases at the expence of his vassals, and they dare not grunt their disapprobation. Thus, you see the Devil has a right and property in his subjects, as he, like earthly monarchs, can rob and plunder them at his pleasure, and is account∣able to no one for his deeds; for it is an established maxim, "That kings can do no wrong." There∣fore, Lucifer, as King of Hell, cannot act amiss. But you are ready to ask, from whence did the De∣vil derive these inestimable rights and privileges? Did the people, his subjects, give up their rights? No: he acquired them by assumption; and by God's permission, he has possessed those valuable rights through a series of ages, and will continue to enjoy them for ages to come, as their is no heir apparent to lucceed him. Is not those Rights of the Devil with respect to the length of time he enjoys them Page  631far superior to the Rights of earthly Kings? certain∣ly they are, as history furnishes us with documents to prove that he has exercised those rights through a succession of ages, already near six thousand years; and will undoubtedly enjoy them as many more. The infernal monarchy, according to history, ap∣pears to have been original; for I do not recollect reading of any other previous to the establishment of a monarchical government in Hell by the puis∣sant Lucifer. Why, thou fool, say some of you, how shouldst thou hear of its having a precedent, since its originality is unquestionable, and all other absolute monarchies are but eminations from that primary authority, having their existence from that very source. Hell is the fountain head, and all terrestrial monarchies, I say, are but corrupted waters in comparison with the fountain which sup∣plies them, notwithstanding no labour has been lost on the part of the monarchs in all ages and kingdoms, to render their governments pure like their original. Yet Hell is the most peaceable, and justice therein the best administered of any other kingdom I have ever heard of. No wars! no riots! no tumults or insurrections! no traiterous corres∣pondence! no sediton or attempt to alienate the af∣fections of Lucifer's subjects from his person! no attempt to vilify and bring into contempt the con∣stitution of the empire! But, on the contrary, the virtues most prevalent are, unity, peace and con∣cord, throughout the whole of Lucifer's dominions. In Hell, the public tranquility is never disturbed in any state or apartment. There you will hear of no such odious names, as Paine, or Priestley, to alarm or terrify you, by their endeavours to subvert the government or the country. There will be no Birmingham Roberspieres to affright, or disturb "the loyal Job Not," when he lays down his head on the lap of his mother, of whom poor Job has such dreadful apprehensions.

Page  140Go on, thou loyal true blue, and pursue thy jour∣ney, and fear not for thou mayest assuredly depend upon a welcome reception by King Lucifer, but more especially if thou art accompanied by thy con∣fort Betty Martin, no questions will then be asked, the mark in your foreheads will testify whose sub∣jects you are. Hail! happy Job and Betty! Two faithful pot companions; greet the brethren of the household with an unholy kiss, when you enter those happy realms, where loyalty and unanimity ever dwells. Who can avoid contemplating the happiness of Job, when undisturbed by his ene∣mies? There is no such thing as a Jacobin in Hell; and the names of Paine, Priestley, and in short all the names of modern reformers, are detestable there as well as here: no projects of reform are recognized there; in fact, thereis no necessity, the constitution being in its primitive purity, which is rendered mani∣fest by the desire of anti-republicans and others shew in their emigration thither. What has been left undone by the celebrated Job Nott, the more ef∣fectually to secure to himself a place at the helm of affairs in Satan's kingdom? Has not every thing in his power been done, to obtain the favour of his master Lucifer? Certainly Job has been a very zealous friend in his master's service, which was very conspicuous in his conduct in the Birmingham riots; and he is entitled to patronage and promoti∣on in the court of Lucifer, in whom the sole right of conferring places, honours, pensions, and emo∣luments is invested, Job's literary productions have also contributed very much to the population of the infernal regions; which will undoubtedly pre∣judice the inhabitants greatly in his favour. Me∣thinks, I hear some of you say that I am jealous of the honour about to be done to Job: no, no; far be it from me to envy any man; for I declare to Job and all the world, that neither envy, hatred, malice or uncharitableness shall ever find place within me.

Page  141

The Impossibility of commencing Tyrant over an armed Nation convinced of the universal Equality of Man∣kind.

(From Barlow's Advice to the Privileged Orders)

ONLY admit this original, unltrable truth, that all men are qual in their rights, and the foundation of every thing is laid: to build the su∣perstructures requires no effort but that of natural deduction. The first necessary deduction will be, that the people will form an equal representative government; in which it will be impossible for or∣ders or privileges to exist for a moment; and con∣sequently the first materials for standing armies will be converted into peaceable members of the state. Another deduction follows, that the people will be universally armed: they will assume those wea∣pons for security, which the art of war has invent∣ed for destruction. You will then have removed the necessity of a standing army, by the organization of the legislature, and the possibility of it, by the ar∣arangement of the militia; for it is saimpossible for an armed soldiery to exist in an armed nation, as for a nobility to exist under as equal government.

It is curious to remark how ill we reason on hu∣man nature, from being accustomed to view it un∣der the disguise which the unequal governments of the world have always imposed upon it, During the American was, and especially towards its close, General Washington might be said to possess the hearts of all the Americans. His recommendation was law, and he was able to command the whole power of that people for any purpose of defence. The philosophers of Europe considered this as a dangerous crisis to the cause of freedom. They knew, from the example of Caesar, and Silla, and Marius, and Alcibiades, and Pericles, and Crom∣well, that Washington would never lay down his arms, till he had given his country a master. But Page  142after he did lay them down, then came the miracle —his virtue was more than human; and it is by this miracle of virtue in him, that the Americans are supposed to enjoy their liberty at this day.

I believe the virtue of that great man to be equal to the highest human virtue that has ever yet been known; but to an American eye no extraordinary portion of it could appear in that transaction. It would have been impossible for the General or the anny, to have continued in the field after the ene∣my left it; for the soldiers were all citizens! and if it had been otherwise. their numbers were not the hundreth part of the citizens at large, who were all soldiers. To say that he was wise in dis∣cerning the impossibility of success, in an attempt to imitate the great heroes abovementioned, is to give him only the same merit for sagacity which is common to every other person who knows the country, or has well considered the effects of equal liberty.

ON THE POMPOUS TITLES GIVEN TO THE DIGNIFIED CLERGY.

(From the Candid Philosopher)

THE pompous titles given to the haughty suc∣cessors of humble fishermen, have often ama∣zed me. Some of them appear to me either to bor∣der on the very confines of blasphemy, or to have no meaning in them. I would fain know how any man alive can, with propriety, be called a RIGHT REVEREND FATHER IN GOD? What is the mean∣ing of this great title? How can any man. formed of dust and ashes, full of frailty, and full of sin, be said to be RIGHT REVEREND? And how is he a Father in GOD? Equivocation may explain away these words, but common sense must determine they are impious and absurd.—As to the terms, your Page  143Grace, your Lordship, your Reverence, &c. &c. they favour too much of vanity and laical pride, to be∣come the humility of the disciples of CHRIST, and teachers of his gospel. I cannot find any such titles were ever given to our SAVIOUR or his apostles; yet, without intending any affront to the pious Pastors of the established Church, I really think the apostles were as holy, wise and virtuous, as any of the Primates, Archbishops, Prebendaties, Rectors, Vicars, &c. &c. &c. &c. &c. of the pre∣sent age.

ON THE VENALITY OF VOTERS, BOTH IN AND OUT OF PARLIAMENT.

(From the Adventures of Gabriel Outcast.)

THOUGH our prudent ancestors found it ne∣cessary to curb the influence of the crown, by enacting a law, that none of its officers should interfere in elections, yet matters are come to such a pass. that administration found it necessary to have as many voices in the house, as they could acquire; for this purpose no money was spared, and every measure pursued that would defet and evade the standing laws against bribery and corrup∣tion. The misfortune seemed to be this: in the reign of King William, venality in parliament was unknown, every man voted as his judgment and conscience directed him, and the minister could carry no measures of his own, unless they tended to the general good.

This did not agree with King William, who was an arbitrary prince, and of course, found his situa∣tion so uneasy. that he was once on the eve of re∣turning to Holland in disgust, and would undoubt∣edly have done it, had not his ministers contrived to carry his favourite points, by bribing the Parlia∣ment of those times. Thus did that venality, to Page  144which the enormous debt of this nation is in a great measure owing, descend from the crown to the people; for in those days it was found difficult to find representatives; and the electors were obliged to court gentlemen to serve them. But when the members found they were to be rewarded for their votes. men were so eager to get into parliament, that they courted the electors, who, in their turn, expected o be paid for their suffrages, of course, the members of the lower house, in a few years, could not obtain a sear but at a great expence, and to reimburse themselves, made terms with the mi∣nister; and such was the degeneracy of the times, that men would not vete, even according to their consciences, without a bribe. This corruption spreading from the lower house to the upper, has occasioned all the cala••ties under which this coun∣try labours; and whereas venality near a century ago descended, as I observed, from the crown to the people, it now rises from the people to the crowm.*{inverted ⁂}

END OF THE FIRST PART.