Images de page
PDF
ePub

• I mean to meddle with no mans opinion ; and, leaving all men to follow the plan of their own opinions of former professions, my plan is to eftablish for the American an unequivocal, express right of not having his property taken from him but by his own consent, in his own allembly.

• Eight weeks delay admits no further hesitation, no, not of a mo. ment; the thing may be over ; a drop of blood renders it immedi. cabile vulnus.

• Whether it can ever now be a true reconciliation, must be owing to the full compensation that America shall receive. Repeal the mucual ill-will that subsists, for it is not the repeal of a little act of par. liament that will work peace. Will the repeal of a bit of parchment avail ? Will, think you, three millions of people in arms be satisfied by such a repeal? It must be a repeal on the principle of justice! There must be no procrastination ; you are to a moment-now-instantane. ously. Every hour that a beginning is not made towards softening, towards healing—the very news of which might work wonders !-endangers the fixed liberty of America, and the honour of the mother comtry.

• The success and permanent effe&t of the best measures may arife from mutual good-will.

• My motion is part of a plan; and I begin with a proof of good. will. My motion is “ to address the king to remove the forces from the town of Boston.”

• 'The Congress, they are more wise and more prudent than the meeting of ancient Greece. Your lordships have read Thucydides. He mentions nothing of ancient story more honourable, more respectable, than this despised meeting.

• The congress is treated harshly ~I wish we would imitate their temper; firm, indeed, if you please--but congress is conducted with firniness and moderation. I wish our House of Commons as freely and uncorruptly chofen.

“ The proceedings from hence arise from ignorance of the circumftances of America. The idea of coercion by troops, where they were not the natural resource, was wanton and idle.

• Anger was your motive in all you did. “What! shall America presume to be free? Don't hear them-chastise them !" This was your language castigat anditque-the severelt judge, though he chastifes, also hears the party

• All the mischief has arisen from your anger; for your not adapting your means to your ends: troops and violence were ill means to answer the ends of peace.

• I understand government is not altogether fatisfied with the commander of your troops; he has not been quick enough to shed blood; his moderation is ridiculed: but I know that gentleman, an officer of long service, has acted prudently; it was want of wisdom to place an *army there--I have heard of armies of observation, but this is an army of irritation.

• In the civil war of Paris, where those great men, the prince of Condé and Marshal Turenne, commanded the two parties-Marshal Turenne was said often to have been near the prince. The queen was.

angry ;

[ocr errors]

angry; she did not see why, when he was so near the prince, he thould not take him; she was offended, and with some anger asked, " Quand vous etiez si pris, pourquoi n'avez-vous pas pris le Prince?" That great

officer who knew his business, anfwered coolly, J'avois peur, Madame, qu'il ne m'eut prit."

* The ministry tell you, that the Americans will not abide by the congress ;-they are tired of the association ; - true, many of the merchants may be—but it does not now depend on the merchants, nor do the accounts come even from the principal merchants, but from the runners of ministry, But were the dissatisfaction among the merchants ever so great, the account is no way conformable to the nature of America.

• The nation of America, who have the virtues of the people they sprung from, will not be slaves. Their language is, if trade and slavery are companions, we quit the trade ; let trade and flavery go where they will, they are not for us.

• Your anger represents them as refractory and ungrateful in not submitting to the parent they sprung from ; but they are in truth grown an accession of strength to this country; they know their importance ; they wish to continue their utility to you ; but though they may be fick of the association, chose fons of the earth will never be dissuaded from their association.

After the repeal of the stamp act, two years after, I was in the country an hundred miles off; a gentleman who knew the country, told me, that if regiments had landed at that time, and ships had been sent to destroy the towns, they had come to a resolution to retire back into the country. It is a fact; a noble lord smiles ; if I were to mention the gentleman's name, it would not increase his smile.

"I wish the young gentlemen of our time would imitate those Ame. ricans that are inisreprelented to them; I wish they would imitate their frugality ; I wish they would imitate that liberty which the Americans love better than life ; imitate that courage which a love of liberty produces.

• One word more. I will send my plan, if the state of a miserable constitution stretches me on a fick bed. It is to put an end to the quarrel. “ What before you know whether they will come to terms ?" Yes, let my expectations be what they will, I should recal the troops-, it partakes of a nullity to accept submission under the influence of arms.

• I foretel, these bills must be repealed, I submit to be called an idiot if they are not. Three millions of men ready to be armed, and. talk of forcing them!

• There may be dangerous men, and dangerous men and dangerous councils, who would instil bad doctrines, advise the ensaving of Anerica ; they might not endanger the crown, perhaps, but they would render it not worth the wearing.

The cause of America is allied to every true whig. They will not bear the enslaving of America. Some whigs may love their fortunes better than their principles; but the body of whigs will join ; they will not enllave America. The whole Irishi nation, all the true English wbigs, the whole nation of America ; these combined make many mil.

lions

lions of whigs, averse to the system. France has her full attention upon you; war is at your door; carrying a question here will not fave your country in such extremities.

• This being the state of things, my advice is, to proceed to allay heats ; I would at the instant begin, and do something towards allaying and softening refentment. My motion, you fee, respects the army, and their dangerous situation. Not to undervalue General Gage, who has served with credit ;--- he acts upon his instructions; if he has not been alert enough to shed blood;

Non dimicare quam vincere maluit.

[ocr errors]

And he judged well. The Americans too have acted with a prudence and moderation, that had been worthy of our example, were we wise ; to their moderation it is owing that our troops have remained fo long in safety.

Mal-administration has run its line-it has not a move left it is a check-mate.

Forty-thousand men are not adequate to the idea of fubduing them to your taxation. Taxation exists only in representation; take them to your heart, who knows what their generosity may effect ?

• I am not to be understood as meaning a naked, unconditional re. peal; no, I would maintain the superiority of this country at all events. But

you are anxious who shall disarm first. That great poet, and, perhaps, a wiser and greater politician than ever he was a poet, has given you wiseft counsel, follow it:

Tuque prior, tu parce; genus qui ducis Olympo.

Projice tela manu. • Who is this man that will own this system of force as practicable ? And is it not the height of folly to pursue a fyftem that is owned to be impracticable?

• I therefore move, that an humble address be presented to his majesty, most humbly to advise and beseech his majesty, that, in order to open the ways towards an happy settlement of the dangerous troubles in America, by beginning to allay ferments and foften animofities there; and above all, for preventing, in the mean time, any fudden and fatal catastrophe at Boston, now suffering under the daily irritation of an army before their eyes, posted in their town; it may graciously please his majesty, that immediate orders may be dispatched to General Gage, for removing his majesty's forces from the town of Boston, as soon as the rigour of the season and other circumstances indispensable to the safety and accommodation of the said troops may render the same practicable.'

There must have been something fascinating in the Earl of Chatham's manner, which operated the great effects which his orations produced in the senate. His eloquence, though great, was not so transcendant as to move and sway assemblies of men, if we may judge of it from the specimen here produced,

or

er from other fpecimens to this colle&tion. But if these are not faithfully reported, then the editors of the parliamentary speeches of the last reign were at greater pains than our present publishers.

The speech we have quoted of the Duke of Argyle approaches more nearly to the pure, chaste, bold, nervous, and concise manner, which we lo juftly admire in the ancient writers, and the modern Italian historians who have copied it, than that of the Earl of Chatham, which is more loose, prolix, and unconnected --yer voice, looks, gesture, a discernment of the present tone and temper of the audience, and an adaption of sentiments; these circumstances, and qualities united with great talents, enabled Lord Chatham to rise to the very summit of fame, in this country, for popular eloquence. All that we advance, is, that in the collection before us the speeches of the last reign are more juftly composed, or more judiciously felected, either by the original publishers of them, or by our compiler, than the later ones.

This truth would be more forcibly illustrated were we to take a compa, ative view of the orations of other and inferior orators to the Duke of Argyle and the Earl of Chatham.–The speeches of Mr. Henry Fox, the father, as stated in this collection, appear to be equally manly, sensible, and acute, with those of Mr. Charles Fox the son, and far more elegant and classical. If we descend to che common herd of speakers, introduced into this collection, the difference between the firft and the last, in the order of time, will appear to be still more obvious and prominent.

The life of Sir Robert Walpole, prefixed to this collection, contains nothing that has not been already published, and which is not universally known to every person who is even initiated in the history of this country.

The design or plan of the present publication was good. Had the editor poffefsed taste and judgment to select the best speeches on the most important fubjects, and to have arranged them under proper heads, according to some general, philosophical, or historical, or legal, or political division, he would have done some little service to the public, and great honour to the British fenate. But his arrangement is like that of all index-makers, merely alphabetical ; nor are the subjects of the speeches so much as mentioned, except in the index, lo that the reader is left to conjecture, from the speeches themselves, the occasions on which they were delivered.

ART. V.

ART. V. A Reply to Sir Lucius O'Brien, Bart. in which that

Part of bis Letter to the Author, which most particularly respects the prefeni State of the Iron Trade between England and Ireland, is conga dered. By William Gibbons, 8vo. 15. 6d. Robinsons, 1785.

MI

R. Gibbons, in this publication, confiders such parts of

Sir Lucius O'Brien's letter, as he thinks the iron trade is called on to reply to. There is but one way, in his opi-. nion, to establish a rule of perfect equality between the two kingdoms, which is, that Ireland shall pay the same duty as England on bar iron.

• It is possible Ireland has not yet benefitted by her free trade to the full latitude of her most sanguine expectations ; but that does not ar. gue her inability: the lies in the latitude of our great coal and iron mines, and is frequently finding new ones ; but such mines are not opened, to any great effect, in a minute ; nor are new establishments of manufactories the work of a day : Can any juft inference be drawn from 'hence, that years may not produce both collieries and manufactories of this we are not jealous or begrudging : we only wish, as two parts of one empire, that the competition may commence fairly, in respect to duties, and then let the palm be the reward of those, who most by their exertions deserve it ; competitions promote industry, ingenuity, and excellence in quality, therefore may be productive of beneficial effects to both countries. It might, by way of argument, be added, that the country which has particular burthens, unfelt by the other, hould be likewise entitled to particular privileges : bụt I wave all such speculative considerations, and, standing on the broad bafis of equality, appeal to the candour of Ireland whether there is any thing more or less than equity in our proposals: let me proceed one step further; it muft on all hands be agreed, that no power on earth has any legal right to interfere with your parament, in regulating the duties on your wares exported; but when 'ewo parts of one empire, whose interest is one, and whose affections should by every means be cleared from the rubbish of jealousy, are negociating a permanent fyftem of equal and mutual benefits, in commerce and manufactures; if at such a time an advocate for a very important branch of manufacture comes forward, and shews that the iron trade is, by a fatal accident, left in a most unequal situation in respect to the two countries, and no remedy is provided by the treaty in agitation; who will hesitate to say, that the justice and generosity of Ireland is not in such a case called upon to adminifter it's aid to the reciprocal interests of the two countries, by removing the inequality of which we complain?'

We do not pretend to decide concerning the accuracy of the calculations on which Mr. Gibbons builds his doctrines. But we entirely approve such general principles as these.

« PrécédentContinuer »