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Thirdly, That the whole legislature of this country is directly an usurpation.
Again, with respect to the laws of this realm, which hitherto have been our boast, indiscriminately and without one single exception, that they are grounded upon this usurped authority, and are therefore in themselves null, or, to use his own words--that there is little or no law in this country.
Then, Gentlemen, is it to be held out to a community of ten or twelve millions of people, is it to be held out, as well to the lower as to the better informed classes of these ten or twelve millions, that there is nothing in this society that is binding upon their conduct, excepting such portion of religion or morality as they may individually and respectively entertain
Gentlemen, are we then a lawless banditti? Have tve neither laws to secure our property, our persons, or bur reputations ?-Is it so that every man's arms are unbound, and that he may do whatever he pleases in the society --Are we reduced back again to that savage state of nature ?-I ask you the question! You, Gentlemen; know well what the answer is; but; Gentlemen, are we to say, that a man who holds this out to those who are not furnished with the means of giving the answer which I know you, and every Gentleman who hears me at this moment, will give, is discussing a question? Can ány thing add to his slander upon the constitution; and upon the separate parts of the government, so constituted as ours is, more than that sweeping imputation upon the whole system of law that binds us together-namely, that it is null and void, and that there is in reality no such thing to be found?
Gentlemen, in the several passages which I shall read to you, I impute this to him also, that he uses an artifice gross to those who can observe it, but dangerous in the extreme to those whose minds perhaps are not sufficiently cultivated and habituated to reading, to enable them to discover it: the artifice, in order to create disgust, is neither more nor less than this—it is stating all the objections that can possibly be urged to monarchy, separately and solely considered, and to pure and simple aristocracy; he never chooses to say a single syllable with respect to those two as combined with a democraey, forbearing also to state, and industriously keeping out of the way, every circumstance that regards that worst of all
governments, an unbalanced democracy, which is neXcessarily pregnant with a democratical tyranny. This
is the gross artifice; and when you come to dissect the book in the careful manner that I have done, I believe
other reader will easily detect that artifice.
Gentlemen, to whom are the positions that are contained in this book addressed? They are addressed, Gentlemen, to the ignorant, to the credulous, to the desperate: to the desperate all governmeyt is irksome; nothing can be so palatable to
their ears as the comfortable doctrine that there is neither law nor government amongst us.
The ignorant and the credulous, we all know to exist in all countries; and perhaps exactly in proportion as their hearts are good and simple, are they an easy prey to the crasty who have the cruelty to deceive them.
Gentlemen, in judging of the malignant intention which I must impute to this author, you will be pleased to take into your consideration the phrase and the manner as well as the matter. The phrase I state to be insidious and artful, the manner in many instances scoffing and contemptuous, a short argument, often a prevalent one, with the ignorant or the credulous. With respect to the matter, in my conscience I call it treason, though technically, . according to the laws of the country, it is not-for, Gentlemen, balance the inconvenience to society that which is technically treason, and in this country, we must not, thank God, extend it, but keep it within its most narrow and circumscribed definitions, but consider the comparative difference of the mischief that may happen from spreading doctrines of this sort, and that which may happen from any treason whatever.
In the case of the utmost degree of treason, even perpetrating the death of a prince upon the throne, the law has found the means of supplying that calamity in a manner that may save the country from any permanent injury. In many periods of the history
of this country, which you may easily recollect, it is true that the reign of a good prince has been interrupted by violence,-a great evil but not so great as this : the chasın is filled up instantly by the constitution of this country, even if that last of treasons should be committed.
But where is the power upon earth that can fill up the chasm of a constitution that has been growing not for seven hundred years, as Mr. Paine would have you believe, from the Norman conquest-but from time almost eternal,-impossible to trace ; that has been growing, as appears from the symptoms Julius Cæsar observed when he found our ancestors nearly savages in the country, from that period until it was consummated at the Revolution, and shone forth in all its splendour ?
In addition to this, this gentleman thinks fit even to impute to the existence of that constitution, such as I have described it, the very evils inseparable from human society, or even from human nature itself: all these are imputed to that scandalous, that wicked, that usurped constitution under which we, the subjects of this country, have hitherto mistakenly conceived that we lived happy and free.
Gentlemen, I apprehend it to be no very difficult operation of the human mind to distinguish reason . ing and well-meant discussion from a deliberate design 10 calumniate the law and constitution under which we live, and to withdraw men's allegiance from that constitution ; it is the operation of good
sense : it is therefore no difficult operation for & Jury of the city of London : therefore, you will be pleased to observe whether the whole of this book, I should rather say, such part as I am at present at liberty to advert to, is not of this description, that it is by no means calculated to discuss and to convince, but to perform the shorter process of inflammation; not to reason upon any subject, but to dictate ; and, Gentlemen, .as I stated to you before, to dictate in such a manner, and in such phrase, and with all such circumstances as cannot, in my humble apprehension, leave the most remote doubt upon your minds of what was passing in the heart of that man who composed that book.
Gentlemen, you will permit me now to say a word or two upon those passages, which I have selected to you, first describing a little what those
passages are. I have thought it much more becoming, much more beneficial to the public, than any other course that I could take, to select six or seven, and no more (not wishing to load the record unnecessarily), of those passages that go to the very root of our constitution, that is the nature of the passages which I have selected; and, Gentlemen, the first of them is in page 2), where you will find this doctrine :
“ All hereditary government is in its nature ty
ranny. An heritable crown, or an heritable throne, “ or by what other fanciful name such things may “ be called, have no other significant explanation " than that mankind are heritable property. To