Page images

ment, in both of which, evidence of facts are stated in proof of criminality: but the Americans were denied to be heard. The people of America condemned, and not heard, have a right to resist.

[ocr errors]

- by

by whose

By whose advice vindictive counsels were pursued, whose advice false representations were made, advice malice and ill-will were made principles of governing a free people; all these are questions that will be asked. I mean no personal charge on any man farther than his misdoings call for.

There ought to be some instant proceeding towards a settlement, before the meeting of the Delegates. My object is to put the foot on the threshold of peace, and to shew an intention of reconciling: -I will, unless I am fixed to a sickbed, I will attend this business throughout, till I see America obtain what I think satisfaction for her injuries,

still attentive that she shall own the supremacy of this country. It would be my advice to his Majesty, to end this quarrel the soonest possible; his repose is our duty, Who by misadvice had planted a thorn in his side, by a contest with a people determined on their purpose?

I have a plan,

I wish to offer myself, mean as I am; a plan of a settlement, solid, honourable, and lastir.g. — America means only to have safety in property, and personal liberty. These, and these only, were her objects. Independency was falsely charged on her. I disclaim all metaphysical distinctions. The declaratory act leaves you a right to take their money when you please.

[ocr errors]

[ocr errors]

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

Eight weeks delay admits no farther hesitation, no, not of a moment; the thing may be over; a drop of blood renders it immedicabile vulnus *).

Whether it can ever now be a true reconciliation, must be owing to the full compensation that America shall receive. Repeal the mutual ill-will that subsist', for it is not the repeal of a little Act of Parliament that will work peace. Will

*) eine unheilbare Wunde.

[ocr errors]

There must

now, ió

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. be no procrastination; you are to a moment, stantaneously. Every hour, that a beginning is not måde towards softening, towards healing (the very news of which might work wonders) endangers the fixed liberty of America, and the honour of the Mother country.

[ocr errors]

The success and permanent effect of the best measures may arise from mutual good- will.

[ocr errors]

My motion is part of a plan; and I begin with 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 firmness and moderation. I wish our House of Cominons as freely and uncorruptly chosen."

The proceedings from hence arise from ignorance of the circumstances 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 auditque"); the severest judge, though he chastises, also hears the party.

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

[ocr errors]

I understand government is not altogether satisfied 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 pru» dently; it was want of wisdom to place an army there. I have heard of armies of observation; but this is an army of irritation.

*) Anspielung auf die oben Seite 88 angeführte Stelle im 6ten Buch der Aeneide, v. 565.


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

In the civil war of Paris, where those great men, the Prince of Condé *) and Marshall Turenne **), commanded the two parties, Marshall Turenne was said often to have been near the Prince. The Queen was angry; she did not see why, when he was so near the Prince, he should not take him; she was offended, and with some v warmth asked, Quand vous étiez si près, pourquoi n'avez-vous pas pris le Prince? That great off cer, who knew his business, answered cooly, Javois peur, Madame, qu'il ne m'eut pris."

[ocr errors]

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 slavery 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 sick of the association, those sons of the earth will never be dissuaded from their association.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

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.

Louis II. de Bourbon, Prince de Condé, geboren zu Paris 1621) gestorben 1686 zu Fontainebleau, ein berühmter Krieger Eine Erzählung der bürgerlichen Unruhen in Frankreich, auf welche oben angespielt wird, kann wegen Beschränktheit des Raums hier nicht mitgetheilt werden. **) Henri de la Tour Vicomte de Turenne, geboren 1611, getödtet durch eine Kanonenkugel bei Sasbach, den 27sten Julius 1675. Man findet von diesem berühmten Helden unter andern auch Nachricht im Handbuch der Französischen Sprache, Theil I. S. 67.

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 Americans that are misrepresented to them; I wish they would imitate the 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 sickbed. 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 recall the troops; it partakes of a nullity to accept submission under the influence of arms.

[ocr errors]

I foretell 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 councils, who would instil bad doctrines, advise the enslaving of Ame rica: 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 enslave America. whole Irish nation, all the true English Whigs, the whole nation of America, these combined, make many millions of Whigs averse to the system. France has her full attention upon you; war is at your door; carrying a question here, will not save 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 resentment.

My motion, you see, respects the army, and their dangerous situation. Not to undervalue General Gage, who has served with credit, he acts upon his instructions; if he

[ocr errors]
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

And he judged well. The Americans too have acted with a prudence and moderation that had been worthy of

*) Er wollte lieber nicht kämpfen als siegen.

our example, were we wise: to their moderation it is owing, that our troops have so long remained in safety.

[ocr errors]

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 subduing them to your taxation. Taxation exists only in representation: take them to your heart; who knows what their generosity may effect?

[ocr errors]

I am not to be understood as meaning a naked, unconditional repeal; 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 wisest 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 fully to pursue a system that is owned to be impracticable? I therefore

move, that an humble address he presented to his Majesty, most humbly to advise and beseech his Majesty, that in order to open the way towards an happy settlement of the dangerous troubles in America, by beginning to allay ferments, and soften animosities there; and above all, for preventing, in the mean time, any sudden 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.

* Worte, mit welchen im 6ten Buche der Aencide Vers 835 und 836 Anchises das Schattenbild des Cäsar anredet, von dem sein prophetischer Geist ihm sagt, er werde dereinst, auf die Oberwelt versetzt, mit dem Pompejus blutige Kriege führen. Nach der Uebersetzung von Vofs:

Schone zuerst, du schone, der stammt vom hohen Olympus;
Wirf die Geschoss' aus der Hand ..

« PreviousContinue »