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Document 1851991
speciAL
coLLecriONS
w.
DouqLas
LibRAKy
AT kiNQSHON
kiNQSTON
ONTARIO
CANADA
LETTER
TO THE
RIGHT HONOURABLE
EDMUND BURKE,
BY
GEORGE ROUS,
Esq^
IN
REPLY
TO HIS
APPEAL PROM THE
NEW TO THE OLD WHIGS
LONDON
Primed
for J.
DEBRETT,
:
oppoute Burlington Houfq,
Piccadilly.
(\t^u
L'b
LETTER
TO THX
Right Hon.
EDMUND BURKE.
In
Appeal from the
your
late
New
to
Whigs, you candidly admit, that
the French Revolution, " {landing byitfelf,
the Old
" is an open fubje(ft of political difcuffion,
" like all the other Revolutions which
" have been attempted or accomplished
*'
in
OUT age*."
If,
therefore, the political
pupils of your former opinions (and your
publications are fo
all
numerous that we
are
your pupils) have been led to imagine,
that the principles of a free
Government
* Appeal, p. S.
B
ncccf-
2
(
)
an approbation of the
neccflarily involved
French Revolution, fome indulgence was
due from Mr. Burke
even
that
to a love
We
in its excefs.
of liberty,
could not expe£t
Mr. Burke would reprefent us
to the
public as incorporated for the fubverfion of
nothing (hort of the whole conflitution of
this
The
kingdom.
truth, however,
is,
that our oppofite judgments on the events
in
France are no
lefs
derived from our dif-
ferent views of the tranfadlions themfelves,
than from the different principles
in eftimating the condinfl
You employ no
lefs
we
apply
of the leaders.
than four pages in
enumerating the proportions you would
have eftablifned by proof, had not your late
political
aflbciates
rudely interrupted
tlic
career of your eloquence in the debate on
the Canada
bill.
We have
read
more than
hundred pages from your pen on the
P>ench Revolution, replete ** with dexfix
**
trous
**
quence
argument and
^*
:"
powerful elo-
yet your mifreprefentation of
fads has been repeatedly deterred, and
•
it
Appeal, p. 4.
has
3
(
)
has been fuccefsfully proved that yonr rea-
fonlng
*•
"
((
and
infpire fentiments adverfc to the wife
the
us
They
it
You
of this kingdom."
free conflitution
sjive
**
tended to ellaWifh principles, and
*'
of
refult
(his* poHtical
the
controverfv.
affociates) conceive
a harOi, yet a nectilary office in
full
Parliament, to declare to the prefentage,
and to
as late a
any concern
day,
that
pofterity,
the proceedings of our
in
by one book he has
(C
graced the whole
'*
The
*'
author
ceeded from the
"
be regarded as
"
"
a difcuffion
the
Houfe
Party.
It
of
pro-
mouth of him whomufl
authentic organ.
its
which continued
for
In
two
days, no one gentleman of the Oppofition
" doubt
is
life.'*
reludaiitly, to receive the fentence pro-
*'
'*
dif-
however
compelled,
is
-|-
tenor of his
" nounced upon him in
" Commons as that of the
**
as fhall take
interpofed
in
nions."
negative, or. even a
a
favour of him, or of his opi-
Of what
materials this party
compofed you inform
* AppcrJ, p. I.
t
B
2
us.
P. 5.
*'
His J (qw-
+ P. 6.
**
timents
4
<
)
*
timents with regard to them can never
*
vary, without fubje€tlng
him
'
indignation of mankind,
who
'
and are generally difpofed, to look up
'
with reverence
'
their fpecies,
*
to
'
pate.'*
to
Of their
*•
telling us, that
liant talents
benches.
are
bound,
the befl patterns of
and fuch
the nature of
to the jufl
as give a dignity
which we all particiintellects you add, after
very fohd and very bril-
diftinguifli the minifterial
The
oppofite
rows * are a
of feminary of genius, and have
fort
brought forth fuch and fo great talents
as
never before (among us
have appeared together
Even
riod."
a Minifter,
fentation,
'*
any one per
according to your
could
leafl)
the infidious kindnefs of
own
repre-
proceed no farther than,
barely to abftain from
tion.
at
at
public
What feemed to
be
condemna-
recommended
to.
**
him by Mr. Pitt was rather <o extol the
•*
English Conftitution, than to
•'
the French.'*
brilliant
were,
it
talents
condemn
The
very foiid and very
of the
minijlerial benches
feems, equally
filent in
the praife,
• Page 7.
•r
5
(
)
•r in the defence of your principles, or of
your book.
" By *
the privilege of Ipeak-
Com-
*'
ing as often as he plcafed (in
"
mittee) he hoped in
*'
fupply the want of fupport, which he
*'
had but too
much
fome meafure
talents
in Literature,,
have juflly obtained,
and the celebrated name which your
mer
univerfal attention
your book, your fond
nation."
many
are the
in
the
If this inference has the iem-
how happened
blance of truth,
while
t»
felf-love has taught
you to believe, that the " doctrines
" current opinions of the majority
it,
that
of our public men, from the
fordid regards of
th*e
for-
labours in the caufe of freedom had
eflablifhed, excited
"
to
reafon to apprehend.'*
Yet becaufe the high rank
which your
a
intereft,
earneflly wifh
doctrines to be current, not one has
dared openly to approve, or publicly- to dethe
fend,
book
principles of
your celebrated
?
Nothing can more flrongly mark the
fluduationsof mind, to which a vivid ima* Page 22.
ginatioR
6
(
gination
may
)
fubje£l even a wife
opinions
the oppofite
which
man, than
different
at
periods you have entertained relpecling the
probable effeds of the French Revolution,
and of the maxims on which
At one time your language
**
to
mc
" of the
''
as if
affairs
were
I
in a
is,
great
it
is
built.
"
It
feems
not
crifis,
of France alone, but of
all
Europe, perhaps of more than Europe."
At another
time,
" two fuch men
Mr.
as
Pitt and Mr. Fox might frown thefe
" wicked opinions out of the kingdom.'*
*'
Cannot the experience of 1784 teach you
toeflimatc aright the Britifh nation
all
their talents,
and with
all
?
With
their elo-
quence, Mr. Pitt and Mr. Fox are. nothing,
The
but as they build on public opinion.
two Kings of Brentford fmelling to the
fame nofegay would rival in authority
thefe two Statefmen, lliould they vainly
attempt to
relill:
the prevailing fentiments
of the public mind.
At the beginning of the troubles
France,
when
the author of the prcfent
addrefs beheld thofc principles of
ment,
in
whofe truth
is
Govern-
irrefirtible,
but
which
7
(
)
which had hitherto {lumbered in the works
of philofophy, drawn forth into a6lion by
the French Revohition, and the attention
of
all
Europe
not hefitatc to pronounce,
Mr. Fox and
in
his friends could
1789, that
have no
ternative, but to lead in reform, or
To
follow in the rear.
mod
interefting to
al-
meanly
arreft the progrefs
and knowledge upon
of. truth,
he did
riveted to the fcene,
lubje(£ls
the
mankind, exceeds
all
human power. The tide of human reafon
is now rolling in, and none can flop its
courfe, uniefs
to
(hall pleafe the
it
Almighty
change the nature of man, and
oblite-
with which he has en-
rate thofe faculties
dowed and adorned his creatures.
To dire£l the ferment, which fucli a fcene mufl:
excite throughout Europe, to
jects, to teach the
ence to law
is
ment of liberty,
its
proper ob-
multitude, that ol>edi-
as neceilary to the enjoyas that
the law itfclf Ihould
cxprcls the public will, or be dictated by a
common
fcnfe of
a
good
tion of
thefe duties
who
To me
citizen.
no very
intercfl:, are
it
the duties of
feems
a quef-
whether
bed pcrfornied by men,
difficult folution,
are
protefs to claim no rights for tliem\
felves.
8
(
)
which they are not equally difpofed
felves,
others, to wifh that the
to maintain for
may
voice of truth' only
no change which
affe6t
be heard, and to
fhall not be previ-
oufly fan(5tioned by the confenting reafon
of mankind; or by thofe,
who
profefs to
addrefs the prejudices^ not the reafon^ of the
people, to
m^ke
innocent Jpecuiative opinions
the foundation of unjufl diftindlions, and
to teach the multitude, that their participation of civil and political rights
is
in-
compatible with order, and can be exerted
only in deftroying the houfes of their
low
fel-
citizens.
Whether
National Aflembly
the
.of
France have adopted principles of Govern-
ment conducive
an intercfting fubjcd: of inquiry to
tions
whether they have
;
formed
fubje<n:
where the
quiry
is
will
of endlefs
folution
Icfs
all
corre<Slly
con-
probably remain a
Happily
controveriy.
is
moft
difficult,
the in-
important, as the moft
cal invcftigation
na-
meafures to the prni-
in all their
adopted,
ciples
forms
to public happinefs,
can teach us
little
criti-
more
than juftly to appreciate the merits or de^
merit*
9
(
'merits
)
of the principal a£lors in this
To me
derful fcenci
feems, that fome
it
of their meafures muft be referred
ciples not
public
won-
to prin-
of internal government, but of
They
hoftility.
are
meafures of
felf-defence.
The French King had
evade the convocation
endeavoured t6
of the
every art of a bankrupt Court.
his
new
When
fele^lion.
body of his
their
authority
new
taxes, the
Were aflembled
indeed.
flates fo
Refifled ia
to the notables, a
proved infufficient to levy
ftates,
by
imports by the Parliaments, he
had recourfe
own
ftntes
;
but
the
aflembled were, to every purpofe
of reform, efFedually palfied by the divifion
of three orders.
abandon thefe
Compelled
civil
at
length to
defences of defpotifm,
the King, abetted by the highly-beneficed
clergy and a large portion of the nobility,
threw off the malk.
He
aflembled round
the capital a body of foreign mercenaries
to opprefs the rifing liberties of the nation.
That
this
hoflile attempt, not to give
a
hardier name, preceded any one meafure
taken by the Nat:« nal Aflembly, or even a
c
decla-
'=>
(
declaration of
)
principles (for the decla-
its
of rights was not
ration
at this period
con-
ceived) the moft unblufhing advocate of
arbitrary
power will not venture
As
can
little
it
avowal of an
hoflile
meafure of feverity
If the
deny.
be denied, that this open
mind
in the partizans
of ancient defpotifm, fully
fafety.
to
juftified
necejfary
facrifice
every
the public
to
made of
private
rights has exceeded the jufl limits of fecu-
men may,
rity for the future,
throw the principal
their feveral tempers,
blame on thofe
who
who
according to
provoked, or on thofe
executed thefe meafures of preven-
tion.
No
of the
fubje<5t
judgment formed on
this part
can afFe£l the Englifh ad-
mirers of the French Revolution.
We all
lament that the occafion ever exifled, and
deplore the feverities
I feel,
therefore,
it
no
has produced.
defire to enter this
labyrinth of controverly, where an able ad-
verfary
may
evade the application of the
plaineft principle
unqucftionable
of juftice, or the moft
maxim of
miftatement of a fuigle
outlines
of evidence
policy,
fa<5l.
can
by the
The
great
never deceive.
The
«'
(
The
)
honeft intention of the National de-
promote the pubhc happinefs,
legates, to
evinced by arming a whole people.
men
is
Thefe
could not intend to convert a public
trufl to private
benefit,
who began
their
operations by enabling the nation to crujh
all
their
That
opprejfors.
have, in
fa(St,
labours
their
advanced the public happi-
nefs, twenty-five millions of witnefles, a
whole people,
atteft,
devoted to the
new
who
only
(hall
who
enthuliaftically
conftitution, contend
be moft a^live in
its
de-
Public order in regenerated France
fence.
has arifen, not from the comprcffing power
of defpotifm, or the habitual authority of
long-eftablifhed inftitutions, but
from an
enlightened love of their country, and a
.fenfe
of
dead to
common
all
interell:.
He mufl
be
the finer feelings of humanity
;
man from a rainftin^t, who can
he muft wifli to degrade
tional nature to brutal
contemplate, Vvlthout joy and exultation,
this
grand effufiou of
luminating
all
grefs of the
moft
a
philofophic fpirit
Europe,
this
human mind
important fcience,
il-
improving pro-
in the
the
firft,
fcience
the
of
a4apting public inftitutions to the Ible legic 2
timate
"
(
timate objedof
all
)
government— the
protedlion of every individual
the
member
of
Amidft the exultations of a
{late.
whole people
were
it
whether
niine,
cqua|
idle critically to
a fanciful refinement
exa-
may
not in fonie few inftance;? have added ufelefs parts to a
noble ftrudure.
conftitution
is
a noble edifice eredled for
the refidence of public liberty.
at leaft,
The French
ought not
Mr. Burke,
to difpute the
judgment
of the French nation— who has told us,
the
that
"
\vere,
" of
former government of
i\\t* profejfed enemies of the freedom
mankind,''''
what
And again, "
''
n>e
"
that for
*'
the people think fo
*'
/ are
*^
France
2i
fre^ government
any
Jf any
is,
practical purpofe
;
I
f
afk
anlwer,
it is,
what
and that they and not
the natural, lawful,
and competent
judges of this matter.'^ If greater praifecan
be beftowed on inftitutions than the unani-
mous
applaufc of the nation, for whofc
happinefs they are defigned, read that en-
comium
•
in the horror
Thoughts on
and difmay wiiich
the Caufc of the prcfent Difcontents,
p. 52.
+ Letter to the Sheriffs of Briftol, p. 55.
convvihe
»3
(
convulfe
;
the enemies of mankind in
all
other parts of Europe.
mies of the human
Among
thefe ene-
race, foremofl:, appear
who
the petty princes of Germany,
enadl
the ravages of defpotifm on a fmaller, and
confequently more opprtlTive fcale
who
;
plunder the peafant to maintain abfurdly
difproportioned eftabji(hmeijts;
him from
rents,
his
home, the fon from
who
rigor of
the inftruments of
the blood of their
fell
drag
his pa-
hufhand from his family,
the
form under the
pline
who
military
new
to
difci-
exactions
fiibje<Sls
;
to fwell
the pride of a mafter, and have the info-
lence
to
call
To
Government.
this
thefe add the unfeeling defpots, the pimps
and
parafites of
power, the venal
trading politicians in this
tries;
|tion
and
we
tribe
of
and other coun-
have nearly a correal defcrip-
of thofe, whofe
interejied
clamours hail
with involuntary praifethetriumphof Gallic
liberty.
There was
political life
a period in
Mr. Burke*s
when he would havedifdained
to countenance tbis
army of
favages.
In
1775, Mr. Burke could not confent to punifh,
much
lefs prolcribe, a
whole people.
•'The
-'4
(
thing * feems a great deal too big
The
for
)
my
idea
of jurifprudence.
It
fhould
leem to my way of conceiving fuch matters^
that there is a wide ditterence in reafoii
and policy between
the
mode of proceed'
Ing on the Irregular conduct offatter ed In-
of bands of men who dlfturb order within the fate, and the civil
dlviduals^ or even
diflentions,
which may from time
to
time, on great queftions, ngitate the feveral
communities which compofe a
great empire.
me
looks to
It
to apply the ordinary
row and pedantic
ideas of criminal juftice
public contefl.
to be nar'
do not
I
to this
know
the
great
me-
thod of drawing up an hidldtment agalnfl
a whole people.
cule the feelings
creatures^ as Sir
I
cannot
of
Infidt
millions
and
ridi-
of my fellow
Edward Coke
infultcd
one excellent individual (Sir Walter Raleigh) at the bar.
I am
not ripe to pafs
fentence on the gravefi public bodies, en-
trufed with maglfiracles of great authority
and
•
dignity,
and charged with
Mr. Burke's Speech on
tlie
the fafety
of
22d of March, 1775,
p. 44.
*'
their
'5
(
)
''
their fellow c'likens upon thefame
*'
lam.
**
is
*'
cent\
*'
not mild or merciful.^''
not judicious
It is
think, for w-y^
I really
minds
for
who
men,
this
de-
tindiured with humanity^
impoffible for
that thofe
that
men, not
for fobcr
;
title
Mr. Burke
to believe,
aflembled to celebrate the
French Revolution on the 14th of July,
ever intended to convey an approbation of
much
all their inflitutions^
lefs
under circum-
fiances wholly diffimilar in this country, to
They a£Ved
recommend their adoption.
on Mr, Burke's own reafoning " When
:
*'
(I
any
omit
inftitution
political
the
cellent in
*'
muft be fhewn,
**
imperfe£i
',
and
*'
lity fufceptible
"
it
*'
melioration."
contains in
affirms,
"
" begin
that
it is
it
have fomething ex-
fundamental principles.
**
its
to
praifed,"
parenthefis)
libellous
" muft be fuppofed
is
it is
It
rights though
not only by poffibi-
of improvement, but that
it
a principle tending to its
Thofe who, Mr. Burke
publicly
to
incorporate
*'
themfelves for the fubverfion of nothing
**
fhort of tlie whole coaditution of this
**
kingdom,
I
for the utter
overthrow of
*'
its
laws,
'6
(
)
" laws, civil and ecclcfiaftical, and, with
" them, of the whole fyftem of its man**
ners,'*
had
left
nothing to inference and
They had avowed,
conje£iure.
they had
endeavoured to inculcate their principles,
and had defined with precifion their
They
limits.
publicly declare their approbation of
making the
dation of
natural rights of
Government, the
all
obedience in
rity in
man
the
criterion of
and of autho-
people,
They
the magiftrate.
the foun-
think that
thefe original rights of jiiftice, derived
the relations, in
man
to
man,
fource of
which God has placed
cOnftitute the iole legitimate
human laws
;
and to fuppofe an
Governors to
authority
in
rights,
to reverfe the order
a!id
is
to deftroy the
duty.
giflation,
fubvert thefe
of nature,
foundations of moral
As they recognize
man, the
from
the
legitimate fource of
rights of
human
le-
they coniider lawful government as
the means of affording protedion to thefe
rights
—and
in the order of thefe
means they
maintain that from the people, that
is,
the
nation at large, proceeds the law of the
community
law ought
;
or, in other
to be
words, that the
an expreffion of the public
will
'7
(
And
will.
laftly,
by
)
this
law
fo
cxprefTmg
the public will, they maintain, the kingly
office
created, defined, and
Is
They
dire<£ted.
its
applaud
profefs to
French Revolution
operations
the
open public
re-
cognition of thefe principles, without
ex*^
amining
as an
Thefe fubvcrters
all its parts.
the Britlfh ConlKtutlon were equally
citoUs to
their
mark
foli-
the limits, as to eftablifli
principles.
marked
tlnxSlly
or
They,
their
therefore, dlf-
approbation
of the
Polifh Revolution, the dlftingulfhing fea*
ture of
which was laying the foundatio7js of
public order in the
hereditary
change of an
They
monarchy.
eleSfi'Ve
farther
that defpotifm*, according to their
to
an
avow,
judgment
and
*
The
fidercd,
toafls
given at this meeting were well con-
and meant
to cxprcfs principles^
The Rights of Man.
The Nation, the Law, and the King*
The Revolution of Francej and may
that
,
the Liberty of
Country be immortal.
The
Revolution
May
Revolutions never ceafe
in
Poland.
till
Defpotifm
is
ex-
tind.
May
Great Britain and France,, forgetful of ancient
n
Animo-
i8
(
)
and wifhcs, ought alone to be overthrown
by Revolutions
becaufe of all governments.
;
Animofities, unite in promoting the
pinefs of
The
Freedom and Hap-
Mankind.
Sovereignty of the People, a£ling by a free Re-
prefentation in every nation.
The
increafed, increafing,
and facred Flame of Li-
berty.
Perfe£l Freedom, inftead of Toleration, in Matters
of Religion.
The
The
Liberty of the Prefs.
Trial by Jury, and
The
the
Chara£lers
literary
Rights of
Man
\
Rights of Jurymen,
rrray the
to protecl the Innocent, for ever
remain
who
inviolate.
have vindicated the
and may Genius ever be employed ia
Caufe of Freedom.
Thanks
to
Mr. Burke
for the Difcuffion
he has pro-
voked.
The
To
Patriots of France.
the
Memory
of thofe Citizens
who
have died in
France for the Liberty of their Country.
The
Friends of the French Revolution in or out of
Parliament,
The Liberty of North America.
The free Principles of the Britifli
Ireland and her
Band of
General Waftiington
Conftitution.
Patriots.
aud the
Liberty of
North
America.
To the Memory
of Dr. Price, the Apoftle of Liberty,
am! Friend of Mankind.
To
tl'.c
Memory
of
Hampden,
Pvlilton,
Sidney,
Locke, and Franklin.
defpo-
'9
(
dcfpotilm alone
)
radically
is
and
fiecejfarily
fubverjive of thofe original rights,
the
is
the fubvertcr of the Britifh
libeller,
Conflitution
Who then
God.
are the immediate gift of
wliich
He who
?
reprefents
its
with the rights of
iftence as incompatible
nature, or thofe who, acknowledging
means of
theory the beft
rights,
corredl
takes the fingle ground
admits.
" fionary
He
its
prote6l:ing thefe
treats
He
defedls
its
be confefled,
mufl:
fyftem
/;/
wiih only, by juft reafoning from
its principles, to
It
ex-
that
which
?
Mr. Burke
his
reprobates
**
theories of the rights of
them with
derilion
prefent
the vi-
man*."
and contempt;
*'
the blurred and blotted pieces of paper
<*
about the rights of man."
Mr. Burke
does not, indeed, deny the exiftence of natural rights
;
that
deduced by reafon
is,
the claims of jullice,
from the
relations
in
which God has plrxed us but thele, according to Mr. Burke*s fj'fbem, refer wholly
:
to a period antecedent
ment.
After
all
to all civil govern-
the difcuffion the
fubjt(5l
* Appeal, p. 76.
D 2
has
—
20
(
)
has undergone, this fentiment Mr, Burke
"
"
"^'
all
i\\Q
pretended n^\\:% of man,
made
liavc
this
havoc,
*<
rights of the people
**
and
''
to
Plffi^^^
To clofe
**
gives us as his.final judgmeiit.
have
:
cannot be the
for
thefe rights,
which
to
be
a
people^
are things uri-
the one luppoies the prejence,
•
*'
the other the abfefice of a ftate of civil
<*
fociety."
It
feems to follow as a neceflary confer
quence from
this
wild polition, that
admirable works which
mankind
tice,
in
in the
in
the
inflrucfted
principles of natural juf-
the philofophy
vernment, were
aries,
have
all
the
law and go-
of
labours
any Jlate perfedlly
of
ufelefs
vifion:
—
fince thefe rights cannot poffibly exift
in the ab fence of civil fociety^
and
man
for
but
in
that condition (if, indeed, fuch a condition as
Xha total abfnce of civdfciety ever did cxifl)
muft
liave
been a rude unlettered animal,
wholly incapable of comprehending thefe
vifionary theories,
it
feems
to follow, that
thefe fpeculations can have
no other ten-
* Appeal, p. 139,
J
dency
^'
(
dency
h;it to Diijlead.vian from bis facial duty.
Mr. Burke has moO:
that the rights of
'*
)
man
explicitly
in lociety
be fettled on any abftrg^ rule
'
thing
**
that principle'''
(o fool'i/h as to difcufs
is
Though
(ibfurdity
argument
yet I
x\\Q
am
I
am
declared,
" cannot*
and no-
;
them upon
fully entitled to urge the
of a necefl'ary conclufion as an
jigainft
the truth of his principle^
willing to ftate his reafoning with
arbitrary limitations he hinifelf will im-
pofe.
He, perhaps,
will tell us, that fuch
works may be extremely
ufeful
to inftrucl
the initiated in the arts of Government,
Members
Princes, Courtiers, and
liament,
in their duties
;
of Par-
the performance
of which the people have no light toexav^.
Poflibly, if difpofed to concede,
he
may add,
that he quarrels only with our application
of thcfe principles,
as the ftandard
of
rights, as the meaiurc of civil duties.
this
mifapplication
which he
is
civil
That
the audacious novelty,
reprobates as importedfrom France,
and with w4iich
we
'*
are
now
endeavour-
mg
22
C
*'
incr
*'
Crown
work the
to
" of its
ment of
)
deftrudlion
the
of this kingdom, and the whole
conflitution,"
—A
a fingle fad: will
A
lumny.
of
fimple
flate-
refute this ca-
philofopher of no
mean name
in the clofe of a
moral
perhaps, in merit
which any age
the
treatife,
firft,
or nation
has'produced, flates, as the refult of his reafoning, precifely the idea
have attempted
which the French
After obferv-
to execute.
ing the inequahties which
"
"
"
the
*'
the
particular orders
the
the
Government" — "
of men- who
Government" — "
interefl
interefts
of
of
tyrannize
the rudenefs or
" barbarifm of the people ;" or " the un" fortunate conftitution of their Courts of
*'
of
Judicature," have produced in the laws
all
medy
*'
nations;
'*
'
*'
propofes as the re-
fyftem of what might properly
be called natural jurifprudence, or a the-
" Qiy oi
*
a
— he
to
xk\t
general principles which ought
run through, and be the foundation of
the
paliage
laws of
is
all
Jiatiojis^
The whole
curious, and worth tranfcribing
;
and, whether the reafoning be admitted or
rejeded,
equally difproves the charge of
importing,
as
an audacious novelty from
Paris,
(
^3
)
Paris, the opinion, that fiaturalrig/j/s
to be the foundation
of
all
ought
laws and of
all
government.
Every fyftem of pofitive law*," fays
our philofopher, '* ought to be regarded as
*'
more
a
or lefs Imperfed attempt towards
prudence, or toa fyftem of natural jurif
wards an enumeration of the particular
As the violation of jufrules of juflice.
tice is
what men will never fubmit
to
from one another, the public magiflrate
is
under a neceflity of employing the
power of the commonwealth
the prad^ice of this virtue.
this precaution civil
fociety
to enforce
Without
would
be-
come
a fcene of bloodfhed and diforder,
every
man
revenging hlmfelf
at his
own
hand whenever he fancied he was
jured.
To
in-
prevent the confufion which
would attend upon every man's doing
juftice to himfelf,
governments that
the maglftrate, in
have acquired
all
any
confiderable authority, undertakes to do
*
Adam
Smith's
Theory of Moral Sentiments, page
433, of the edition publifhed 1768.
I
*'
juftice
n-
(
''
jufticc to all,
*'
to rcdrefs
*'
all
)
and promifes
to'
hear and
every cottiplaint of injury. In
well-governed ftates too, not only
*'
Judges are appointed for determining
"
the controverlles of individuals, but rules
*'
are
*'
lions
'*
lire
*'
thofe
'*
**
prefcribed for
of thofe Judges; znd tbefe rules
in
general intended
of naturaljufiice.
deed, always !:iappen
every iiiuancc.
" caned
" the
*'
regulating the dcci-
coiridde
It
does not, in-
times xhc
do
tliat they'
Sonnetimes,
the conjiitution of 'the Jiatc
inter eft
of the government
interefl
with
to
fo in
what
is
that
is,
;
\
fomc-
of particular^' orders of
" wen, who tvrannize the oro'vernment,
'* warp the pofitive
laws of the country
" from
'*
'*
*'
juf ice would pr efcrib e,
In fome countries the rudenefs and barijubat natural
barifm of the people hinder the natural
fentiments of juf ice
from arriving
at that
" accuracy and precifion which, in more
" c iv 1ifed nations, they mtumWy attain to.
1
**
Their laws are
''
rude, and
undirtinguilhing.
*'
countries,
the
" of
'•
their
like their
manners, grofs,
In other
unfortunate conftitution
Courts of Judicature hinders
any regular fyftcm of jurifprudtnccfi-om
"
ever
.
^5
(
«
cVer
**
eflablifhlng
)
itfelf
among them,
the improved manners of the
thouf^h
" people may be fuch
" the moft accurate.
would admit of
In no country do
as
law coincide
**
the decifions of pofitive
*'
exa<S^ly, in
"
'which the natural fenfe of jujlice
*'
didiate,
*'
fore,
*'
authority
*«
ments of mankind in
«'
nations, yet can never be regarded as
'
*'
every
with the ruks
cafe,
would
Syjlems of pofitive law, there-
though they deferve the greateft
as the
records of the fentidifferent ages
accurate fyferns of the
and
ruks of natural
juficc.
"
*'
might have been expe£led
rcafonings of lawyers upon the
It
that the
different
imperfedions and improvements of the
" laws of different countries, fhould have
*'
" given
*'
"
occafion to
an enquiry
the natural rules of jufice,
all pofitive
irfitution.
**
been expeded, that
*'
have led them
"
*'
•'
into
to
thefe
what were
independent of
might have
It
reafonmgs (hould
aim at efiablifing afyf-
of what might properly be called natural jurijprudcnce y or a theory oj the ge-
tern
neral principles
which ought
E
to
run through,
*'
and
26
(
and
)
the foundation of the
be
laws rf
all
nations.
But though the reafonnigs of
lawyers
did
produce fometh'ing of
this
nnd though no man has treated
kind,
of any par-
fj'ftematically of the laws
without intermixing
ticular country,
work many
was very late
his
in
clfervations cf this fort,
it
world before any
in the
fuch general fyflem ivas thought of or
before the phllofophy of law
of by
and without regard
itfelf,
particular inftitutions of
treated
to the
any one na-
In none of the antient nioralifls
tion.
do
was
we
find an attempt towards a parti-
cular enumeration of the rules of juf-
Cicero in his Offices, and Arif-
tice.
in
totle
his Ethics,
the fame general
of
treat
all
treat
manner
of juftice in
in
which they
the other virtues.
laws of Cicero and Plato,
In the
where we
might naturally have expected fome
tempts towards an enumeration of
of natural
rules
equity,
which ought
at-
thofe
to
be
enforced by the pofiiive laws cj every country,
there
kind.
•
is,
however, nothing of
this
Their laws arc laws of police,
not of juflice.
Grotius fccms to have
•'
been
^7
(
"
been
tlic f\r{\
who
)
attempted to give the
" world any thing Hkc a
which ought
**
principles
"
be the foundation
**
tions;
and his
" war and
" tions, is,
fyjlcm of thofe
run through^ and
the
laws of all naof the hiws of
of
to
trcatifc
peace, with
all
imperfec-
its
perhaps, at this day, the moft
**
compleat work that has yet been given
*'
upon
I
fliall
in another
*'
difcourfe endeavour to
e;ive
an account
**
of the general principles of law and go-
this
fubjedt.
" vernment, and of
the different revolu-
they have undergone in the dif-
''
tions
"
ferent ages and
**
only in what concerns juflice, but in
'*
what concerns
*'
arms, and whatever
*'
law.
"
enter into any flirther detail concerning
*
periods of fociety, not
police,
I fliall not,
revenue,
and
elfe is the obje6t
therefore, at
of
prefent
the hiftory of jurifprudence/'
E 2
*•
DECLA-
(
*'
28
)
DECLARATION OF THE
OF
« RIGHTS
MAN AND OF CITIZENS
" BY THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF
" FRANCE.
" The
repielentatives of the people of
"
France, formed into a National AlFcm-
"
bly, confidering that ignora?ice^ neglect.,
human
''
or contempt of
*'
caufc of public mhfcrtuncs
*'
let forth,
pf go'-jcrnment, have refolved to
in a folemn declaration, thefe natural,
"
**
imprefcriptible,
-'
that
"
"
this
and
rights^
are the fole
and
corruptions
rights
unalienable
being conflantly
declaration
prefent to the minds of the
the body fecial, they
:
may
members of
be ever kept
''
attentive io their rights
''
that the adts of the legiflative and exe-
"
ciuive powers of
i
ca-
moment compared
end of political infitut ions, may
pablc of being every
**
with the
l-)e
duties
government being
'*
•'
ami their
more refpeded
:
and
alfo,
that the
•'
fncure claims of the citizens, being di-
^^
re(fled
''
ciples,
by fimple and inconteftible prln-
may always
tend to the maintc*'
nance
29
(
)
^*
nance of the conftitution, and the gcne-
*'
ral happinefs.
" For
'*
thefe reafons the National
AfTcm-
bly doth recognize and declare, in the
" prefcnce of the Supreme Being, and
" with the hope of his blefhng and fa" vour, the following facred rights of men
*'
and of citizens
"
Men are
I.
;
born, and always continue,
and equal
*'
free,
"
Civil
*'
founded only on public
'*
"
"
is,
II.
in rejpe5i of ihe'ir rights,
therefore,
diftindiions,
The
end of
can
utilit3%
all political ajfociations
the prefervation of the natural
imprefcriptible rights
of men
;
rights are liberty, property, fecurity,
f
reliftance of oppreflion.
*'
of
III.
The
nation
all fovereignty
\
is ejfentially
and
and thefe
*'
^*
be
and
the fource
nor can any indivi-
any body of men, be
*'
dual, or
**
any authority which
'*
rived from
is
entitled to
not cxprefsly de-
it.
IV.
y
3°
(
*'
)
in the
Political liberty confifts
IV.
" power of doing whatever does not injure
" anotiier. ^he exercife of the natural rights
*'
of every man
**
thoje^
*'
every other
" fame
«'
has
which are
rights
man
;
no other
limits
to
necejfary
than
fecure to
the free exercife of the
and
thefe limits
arc deter'
rninahk only by the law.
" V. The law ought
to
prohibit only
What
not
*'
actions hurtful to fociety.
'*
prohibited by the law fhould not be hin-
*'
dcrcd
"
to that
is
nor fnould any one be compelled
;
which the law does not
" VI. The law
is
an expreffion of the
" will of the community.
" ha\c a right to concur,
"
ally, or
*'
formation.
require.
All citizens
either perfon-
by their reprcfentatives,
" whether
it
It
fould
fame to
pujvfies ; and
be the
prote£ls or
in its
all,
all
**
being equal in
*'
to
**
according
*'
any other difinction than that created by
**
their virtues
all
its
fight ^ are equally eligible
honours^ places^
and employments
to their differe7jt abilities,
and
without
talents.
" VII.
3'
(
*'
No man
Vll.
)
fliould
be accused, ar-
confinement, except In
**
refted, or held in
"
cafes
*'
ing to the forms which
*'
All
"
caufe to be executed, arbitrary orders,
*'
ouj^ht to be punlllied
"
*'
determined by the law, and accord-
who
called
promote,
execute, or
follcit,
;
and every citizen
upon or apprehended by virtue of
the law, ought
immediately to obey,
' and renders himfclf
" tance.
"
has prcfcribed.
It
VIII.
culpable
The law ought
to
by
rcfif-
impofc no
"
other penalties but fuch as are abfolutely
'*
and evidently
*'
ought
*'
law promulgated before the
*'
legally applied.
to be
necefl'ary
punched, but
no one
ap.d
;
in virtue
of a
offence,
and
" IX. Every man being prefumed Inno" cent till he has been convided, when*'
ever his detention becomes indlfpenfible,
"
all
*'
to feciire his perfon,
"
again ft by the law.
rigour to him,
more than
ought
is
to be
necefliiry
provided
''
X.
No
3^
(
" X. No man
ought
)
to be molefted
on ac"
"
count of his opinions^ not even on account
"
of his religious opinions, provided his
" avowal
*'
'*
"The ujjrejlrained communication of
thoughts and opinions being one of the mojl
precious rights of
fpeak, write, and
*'
vided he
is
citizen
may
freely,
pro-
man every
"
"
"
not difturb the
public order eftablifhed by the law.
" XI.
**
of them does
^
publifli
refponfible for the abufe of
this liberty in cafes
determined by the
law.
"
A public force
XII.
being necejfary to
"
give fecurity
*'
citizensj
*'
be?icft
*'
particular benefit of the perfons
*'
it is
"
to
the rights
that force
is
of men and of
inftituted
y^r the
of the community^ and not for the
with
whom
cntruflecL
XIII.
A common
contribution being
*'
ncccflary for the fupport of the public
*'
force,
and
for defraying the other ex-
" penccs of Government, it ought to be
'* divided equally
among the members of
" the
33
(
)
*'
the commiuiity according
"
lities.
'*
XIV. Every
tvo
their abi-
citizen has a right, ei-
**
ther by himfelf, or his reprelcntative, to
*'
a free voice in
*'
of pubhc contributions, the appropri-
**
ation of
*'
of
*'
*'
determining the
iicceffity
them, and their amount, mode
afieflinent,
and duration.
" XV. Every community has a right to
demand of all its agents, an account of
their condud:.
**
XVI. Every community,
in
which
a
*'
feparation of powers and a fecurity of
"
rights are not provided for,
*'
iliitution.
" XVII. The
wants
a con-
right to property
being
and facred, no one ought
*'
inviolate
*'
deprived of
*'
public neceflity, legally afcertained, and
*'
on condition of a previous jufl indem-
"
nity.'*
I
it,
to
be
except in cafes of evident
have fubjoined the French Declaration
of the Rights of
Man
F
and of Citizens to
the
34
(
)
the liberal fentiments of onr Englifli Philo-
fopher, publifhed nearly
of
years be-
prove that the generous and bene-
fore, to
ficent
thirty
attempt to realize the natural rights
man
is
merely an execution of what he
This Declaration,
had conceived.
Bill of Rights, in
many
of
like
its articles,
our
con-
demns the abules of their former Government. They, however, had the wifdom
go farther,
to lay
their foundations in
acknowledged
truths,
which, thus folemnly
to
recorded, might afford governors and people
an eternal monument of their duties.
Were
it
I
difpofed to multiply quotations,
would not be
rities
difficult to
produce autho-
from the writers on our laws,
in vin-
dication of almoil: every article in this
claration,
refpctfling the
individual citizens.
The
De-
private rights of
better
mode
will
be, to feledt for dilcuffion the controverted
Among
parts.
the articles,
which
relpc£l
the rights of uidividuals, certainly the moft
our eftabliflied
maxim, derived from eternal
important deviation from
laws,
is
that
principles of juflice, that
"
'*
all being
in its fight ^ are equally eligible
all ho-
to
*'
j^
equal
noursy
(
35
)
((
nours, places,
*'
to their different abilities,
**
difiintiion
" and
and employments, accordhig
without any other
than that created by their virtues
ialfijts,''*
Difabillties
lar bodies
and profcriptlons of particu-
of men, as thefe never can be
the punlfhmcnr of a crime, miift ever be
iinjuft to the individual
muft provoke
;
hatred of the power that
inflifts
his
the injury
;
muft in the prevailing party nourifh a fpirit
of tyranny, for ever growing by indulgence
;
and mufl: therefore have a neceflary
tendency to deftroy the peace and order of
Were
fociety.
io far
the conftitution of any ftate
perfeded, that legiflation fliould
ways proceed on general
jiiftice,
principles of equal
the laws will in fuch ftate be re;
not
and outrage, but
as a
garded, not as a burden, but a benefit
a
al-
weapon of
hoftility
cementing benevolent principle uniting
hearts
in
their defence.
Each man
feel an intereft in the obedience
will
of others,
and no individual will henceforth
the
all
violate
laws without perfonal dlfgrace, and
provoking the juft indignation of
F 2
all.
An
36
(
)
from the
x\n Intclllc;cnt mind, abflrafled
human
hlftory of
follies
and human crimes,
Avould difcover in reUgion a
new
fecurity
The
for this reign of univerfal peace.
fiiit
muft be an awful impref-
idea prefented,
power and wildom of the Great
fion of the
Author of
ail-crcatcd bring.
A
contem-
works mnft dcvelcpc the be-
plation of his
nevolence with which thev were framed
and the
jrencral
moral world
in his
God
lifiht.
;
laws of the phvfical and
mud
Of
teach, that
all
are equal
the natural rights
which
has given to man, the mojl ferfeSl
the freedom of his
own
inind.
is
Tiiis he
may difguife.
though he may belie
cannot renounce, tliough he
He
caiinot abandoii,
his confcience,
all
Of
and deceive mankind.
the employ m.ents in which the powers
of the human mind can be
cncrao-cd,
v.'cM-fhip
ot the Divine Iking
that, in
which
guilt
—
is
!iypocrify
folly
peculiarly
added to
peculiarly that v/hich ahva3's muft
belong exclujtvcly io
regards another
him.
is
is
the
As
it
life,
the
it
individuaL
As
it
can cffcd none but
indircclly aftcds the affiurs of
this life, its operation dep.-nds folely
on the
fnccrity
37
(
which
Sincerity with
)
forms the heart and
it
internal habits of the
individuah
and
devoti'^ns be fincere
If his
rational,
1
can
c
•hope only to merit the favour of the Deity
bv the difcharo-e of his moral duties to his
fellow creatures, with
Accordingly
to acl.
which
relictions,
are not
Tiiey
ance of
tlie
r^iigion
fliall
fame
find,
dcflincd
that in
all
mere fvftems of
all
enjoin the perform-
How
duties.
produce a real
depend on the
fiiiccriry
particular religioniil
fore his
we
is
fundamental principles are
pricftcrafr, the
the lame.
whom he
far
cifccl^
anv
muft
with which the
humbles himfelf be-
God. Tlie utmoft
efforts
of others,
except by infiruction, can avail nothing.
Happily
for
mankind the
truths
which
concern his duty are too obvious to create
a
When,
difference of opinion.
man
airy
wanders biycnd thcfc
rec^ions
where
priefts
of
limits into the
mctaphylical
have dcgmatifed,
gaping multitude obeyed,
indeed,
m
fubtlety,
and the
ibinkmg minds
opinions continually diverge, until as great
a variety prevails in the fentiments as in the
faces of
mankind.
Amidil
tliis
variety the
wiHi
38
(
Willi
)
of the individual to render his fcrvice
inoft acceptable to the Deity,
which
a philofopher
is
a fubjedl
on
would expe£l mutual
forbearance, even greater than in the moft
fpeculative fcience.
abfl:ra<5l
//
offers the individual ijoorjj.npper
exclufivdy
alojie,
and
the moji unbounded excrcife oj private judg-
ment
is
duty.
in a religion,
is
to love
Yet
ft range
as
it
may feem
whofe fundamental
principle
our neighbour as ourfelves, and
whofe author has explained neighbour
mean man without
dif.indiion
to
of nation^ of
language^ or religion^ intolerance of
portant fpeculative dogmas, idle
unim-
modes of
worflTip and of faith, have convulled every
Chriftian kingdom, and deluged the earth
with blood.
Its
ferocious afpe6l, indeed,
has foftened, as reafon and knowledge
fufed their influence
fpirit yet
lurks in
;
tefts,
dif-
but the malignant
which the
prevail-
ing temper of the age forbids the Magiftrate to execute, fufficient,
however, to en-
gender difcord, and occafionally deflroy the
houfcs of our fellow citizens.
That
in ttfts,
fociety can have
no
pofTible intercft
this fingle confideration
demonftrates.
(
To
Urates.
ns
)
who
are fo unfortunate
not to comprehend or believe the rela-
which man,
tion in
to
thofe,
39
his Creator,
cannot hefitate
as a
moral being, ftands
They
are vain.
tefts
all
any dogmas, or
to fubfcribe
perform any ceremonies, which conveni-
may
ence
Thofe, on the other
require.
hand, whofe minds are awfully imprcfl'ed
with
alone
bly
find
this great truth,
aU
give
fuch,
the fandl'ion
which
to the dijchat ge
fore, innocent
\
human
by the lame
of focial
are tefts, there-
worft pallions
in the
heart, are to this day upheld
Ipirit
;
and their neccffary
fpeak them fubverfive
fects
foundations of
The
To
duties.
Their hiftory proves, that
they have originated
of the
religion can pojji'
But
ukleJs.
tefts are
fbai opi?iion
in
all
ef-
very
of the
true religion and virtue.
teft a£t originated
in
that
popery, which pervaded the
horror of
kingdom
the reign of Charles the Second
;
in
which
taught our anceftors to apprehend a general
maffacre from a feeble race, imbued, indeed, w^th a foolilh fuptrflition, but
who
formed not one hundredth part of the nation
;
which poifened the very fountains
of public fecurity by faKe plots and confplra-
40
(i
>
murdering harmlefs citizens
fpiracles,
der the malk and forms of jufiice
made
that
infamous perjured
penfioner
Oates,
a
which
depofited
the
which
villain, Titirs
Revolution
th2
at
;
remains of
laft
baneful influence in the outracres of
George
Gordon's
mob,
un-*
;
its
Ldrd
our
deftrojing
houfes, and vomiting forth the contents of
our prifons on the peaceful inhabitants of
this
metropoHs.
great
equally fenfelefs
church
fuil:
yell
The
adverfe and
of danger
provoked the oppofite
to
the
paffioii
by the perfecutions of Laud, aided by the
Courts of High
chamber
Charles
;
;
Commiffion
and Star-
fuppoKted the abfurd tyranny of
upheld for a time the more
foolifli
bigotry and greater violence of his brother;
made
a Saint of Sacheverel
for
preaching
the impious and contemptible r.onfenfe of
paflive obedience
at
and non- refinance
;
and
length difgraced the nation in the eyes
of enlightened Europe, by exciting an
il-
mob to dedroy the houle
of a philofopher, who is an honour to his
country, of a man whom the virtuous muft
love, and to involve in the fame ruin many
worthy and induflrious citizens, who preliterate ignorant
fumed
4.
to worfhip
God
fumed
C
deem moft
One
)
in the
acceptable to
manner they
divine nature,
tlie
party, indeed, Diflcnters included,
though diigraced by
fanaticifm, di-
tiieir
clamours againft Popery
re<5led thtir
to
a
noble objcdl, the advancement ot the civil
and confequent happinefs of man-
liberties,
kind.
They
Stuarts
;
were the
Revolution
;
the tyranny of the
refilled
of the
friends
active
fecured the fuccefilon to the
Houfe of Brunfwick
;
and preferved the
Crown
to the anceflors
of his prefent
jefly.
Above
men
thefe
all,
apply their reafonings on
liberty
Ma-
learnt to
iiril
civil to religious
and have amply redeemed their
;
paft follies
by the
jufh and
ments they now maintain.
hand, King-craft and
liberal
On
fenti-
the other
priefl-craft yet con-
tinue to difgrace their adverfaries,
who,
in
their ridiculous pretended zeal for unifor-
mity of
do(Strine,
which hypocrites alone
can profefs, lofe fight of
all their
duties,
and harden their hearts againft the com-
mon
lie,
charities,
and
God.
without which rehgion
its rites
A
a
is
a
folemn mockery of their
.Right Reverend Prelate founds
tl ic
4^
(
the
trump of
)
civil difcord
;
and while am
ignorant miilrimde purfue without mercy,
and plunder without remorfe, pious paftors
from
their pulpits infiilt the juftice of
their country in the prefence of her Judges,
by treating the outrage of
wholtfome fupplement
I,
who can
laugh
rhuch, and fubmit
V!.^.nCLire
a
to her laws.
fome dogmas of our
at
to
her difcipline,
may
to hggefl:, tiiat the folly of this pro-
Jcriptive ipi;it
guile.
banditti as
cm
be equalled only by
its
Whv ihould the Church, by prophan-
i ig :!^e
moft lolemn
qijalify
an Excifeman, expofe herlelf to the
rites
of her religion, to
dcnlion and contempt of enemies, whole
numbers
Hie cannot diminilh
tate-,
why
body
of-
irri-
intelligent
Diil'^nters to iuvefli^ate her errors
and expofe h
poffibly
Why
?
numerous
liimiilate a
r d.-fe<5ls
behold
Can
a DifTenter
the laws of his country,
excluding him from
citizenfhip, treating
office in the
?
tlie
common
rights of
the acceptance of an
management of our common
concern, as the mofl: atrocious crime to he
punifhcd with
lawry
3
?
Can
all
the confcquences of out-
a Difleiiter feel fuch outrage
and
:
43
(
and not abhor
inJLillice
paffions
it is
which
our duty
deteft and
laws
unnatural, the abfurd
tlic
There
?
periuades us to beUeve
eafily
what we cannot but
to dellroy,
all
our
lophiftry in
a
is
While, therefore,
abhor.
fubiifl",
)
who
dlffent
teft
from the
Church v.'ill labour its overthrow. Even
a churchman ai:d friend to eilabhiliI,
oient, do not hcfitate to fay, if the.Clergy
will combine their fnfely with injuJJice
>
others, let eftablifliments perifh.
ments are
iileful\
to
Efiablifh-
juflice is fiecejfary to the
wcU-beins:
s of locictv.
men
So abfurdly do fome
rcafon, that this
temper of DilTenters thus provoked and
cre-
ated has been urged as an argument for up-
holding the
ccucje.
The
meek author of
the precepts of the
religion, claim a merit
more
Clergy, forgetting
in abftaining
active pcrlecution,
they do not re-light the
take
lires
thtir
from
praife >hat
of Smithfield,
and with the language of charity in thtir
mouths,
but with
the
moft unchriflian
rancour in their hearts, repreient prolcilption
at
from the common
no injury.
They
rights of cltizenlhip
affecl to juftify injuf-
G
2
tice
44
)
in their turn
to
(
tlce
and
:
ihe'ir
indulgence to tender confciences
received, and that thofe
tented with
In private
life,
'*
equal,
*'
were he
murdered your
ther
your houfc
;
to
I
have nei-
father, nor robbed
have only turned
I
hold
to fay to his
do you no injury;
I
citizens.
were an individual
the fame language,
unmo-
prove them-
rights of
the
is ill
are not con-
common country,
unworthy
felves
who
permijfion to live
ihe'ir
our
lelled in
"
complain, that
you
**
out of every public meeting in the pa-
*'
rifh.'*
Were
he abfurdly
to juftify his
by alledging the manifefl anger
violence,
and refentment of his adverfary,
room and
flrait
fole reply to
waiftcoat
would be the
fuch ridiculous madnefs. Yet
the abiurdity cf our prefent teft
fomewhat
a dark
greater.
While they
laws
is
irritate
and provoke the Difienters by an exclufion
from
all
offices
admit them
fit
in
of honor or
as electors,
profit,
they
admit them even to
both Houfcs of Parliament, where
alone their refentment can attempt a change.
The
law^s is
real
motive for preferving thefe
not a regard for the interefls ef fofociety
45
(
)
ciety, yet lefs for the intercfls
nor
is
of religion
;
the motive to be found in a zeal fot
Some
the eftabhfhments of our Church.
cflabhfhmcnt
may
A
public utility.
reft
on the broad
bafis
of
precarious provliion for
the Clergy has a natural tendency to de-
grade religion in the perfons of
ters
/(/},
;
its Ivlinif-
than a perverjion of
indeed,
its
The
precepts, or a prophanatioh of its rites.
Clergy of the national religion ought, there
fore, to
-
be placed in a Htuation, whenever
they deferve to
command
refpe£l:.
It
were,
perhaps, difficult to reconcile to enlightened
reafon
all
Church
:
the arrangements of our national
but poffeftion
can impeach,
who
is title,
which
libne
cannot demonftrate ad-
vantages more than fufficient to componfate
the ncceflkry evils of a change.
teft
laws
tion
of
of
its
If
degrade religion by a proiiitudeftroy
its rites,
it
by a fubverfion
precepts, and endanger the
eftablifliment without
a
what can fupport them
rational
?
Church
motive,
According
to
Bifhop Warburton, the eflablinicd Church
in
any country
civil
*'
is
government
tnirlary or
;
the natural aHy of the
and
*'
fundamental
the great preliarticle of alliance
"
is
46
(
*'
**
is
this
that the
:
hifiuence in
" the State
" Church,"
fyftem
all
ful part
the fervice
of
fhail fupport and
common
a lyftem telf
:
to
Hi
and
prcte<fl the
this
notable
are a confpiracy
and corrupt
Statefmen
all
the State,
Accordins;
the
Of fuch
Church JJj all apph
governments
profligate
againft
)
rights ot
of
Priefts
mankind.
laws are a moft ufe-
they enable Priefts and Statefmen
to inflam^e the
minds of men againft each
other by groundlefs diftindlions
— the very
terms of which the multitude cannot com-i
prchend
of
—
to
common
profit of a
preclude
intereft
few on
fion of the many.
all
union from
a fenfe
and thus advance the
;
the plunder and oppref-
But the fun of freedom
has rifen on the world to difpel thefe clouds
The
of ignorance.
common
fhall
caufe
:
nation will unite in a
and
if
fuch confpirators-
then remain, their falfehood, hypo-
crify,
and fraud, will incur the fcorn and
deteflation of
The
mankind.
principle of juftice,
equal prote6lion to every
community, fpeaks the
univerfal peace.
To
extending
member
its
of the
plain language
of
confider public inflitutions
47
(
tntionsas deriving
from
their claim to fupport
all
their public utility, has
tendency to unite
men
all
Yet
government.
juft
)
a ncceflary
in the caufe
maintaining
for
thefe do(£lrine3 have
1
wilhing to become
the Itadcr of a
With
my
my
thoie
who
lot to
I
it
was
when Lord
Parliament
George Gordon affcmbled
mob.
appeal to
h\ the year 1780
in
fit
been iligmatiled as
cannot reafon,
pail coi'dudl.
of
his
myrmidons.
Generally voting againft Government, then
engaged in the American war,
I
had no
particular call of duty to be forward in
defence
:
my
yet for
adivicy in rcfifting
that banditti, aflcmbled in the lobby to
the Houle of
Commons,
to be included in the
Sir
George
tation
Saville
;
Law,
rous
and
conlult their
humble
fhjjred
habi-
the fate
Students of the
Iri(h
Ipirit chara«5leri{]:ic
firft
had the honor
my
perfect Grangers to
refinance, at
awe
fime profcription with
fered their protevftion.
'
I
would probably have
of his, had not the
its
me, with
a
gene-
of the nation, of-
Our mealures
for
derided, taught others to
own
fafety
;
and we were
foon invited to concur in a
common
de-
fence.
The
(
4S
T;he /riends of
civil
)
and religious liberty
Their
eyer be friends of order.
laiuft
poy/cr
is
the voice of truth,
heard only
in a
calm.
The
fole
which can be
teniple of their
.jvoriliip can alone arife from the lober reafou
,0/
m/inkind, diredVed by
a fcnfe
common
of
(jovernment, on the contrary,
in.tere(l'.
iove an occafional
riot,
which, with the
af-
(iflance of the military, is eafily fupprefi'ed
.in. the
mean
tirneit
fordid luxury
te(5i:ion
dure
;
;
;
alarms the votaries of a
makes them crouch
for pro-
and teaches them patiently
to en-
impofed by the hand of power.
evils
Accordingly, for more than a month pre-
14th of July,
ceding the
all
the daily
prints, in the intercft of the Treafury, la-
boured to excite a tumult
^Tierous
.lion
places Vv^here the
:
French Revolu-
was celebrated, among
irritated
yet in the nu-
its
friends thus
and infulted, not a iym.ptom of
will to any
human being
has appeared.
Birmingham, on the Qther hand, the
Icfs yell
ill
In
fenfc-
of danger to the Church refounded
;
and an ignorant multitude were taught to
difphiy
religion,
tlieir
zeal
for
a
meek and holy
by conflagrations
in
tiic
Even
after
raifed
houfes of their fellow citizens.
this
49
(
)
fome breach of order,.
Government have abounded in tcndernefs
event,
"this
doubtlefs
To
and mercy.
let
might have been
juftice,
the
loofe
rigors
a cruel facrifice
of
of
their friends *.
When
• It were improper to fufpe^lany part of the Clergy
of wifhing
many
this
calamity
:
yet the Chriflian charity of
could not retrain their exultation
lamity
fell
" yond
on
thofe
who,
doubtlefs,
were
when
*'
the ca-
finners be-
the Galileans."
One inftance in which the
Church was oppofed to good luorks defervcs
At Warwick fome ungodly DiflTcnters
be recorded.
all
JCffl/of the
to
had admitted into
whom
Church
the
thefe children,
fial
their
Sunday fchool certain children,
They cloathed
fchools had rejecfed.
and inftrudled them, not
in controver-
Divinity, but in the rudiments of Chriftianity.
was even proved,
that
thefe
It
wicked DiHenters fome-
ttmes had given niorley to the children
mod
diligent in
their learning,
and to the whole company a dinner
every Sunday.
This Jeducllon from
their fchool,
hinted
Church created
and doubtlefs, in the excefs of
— " fome dreadful confequences" of
**
riacy,
"
the
A worthy Clergyman required them to fliut up
alarm.
that
his zeal,
their obfti-
own
a meeting houfe and dwellings of their
may
pofTibly in their turn be dcllroyed."
Four
more reverend Churchmen, with other wife men of
aflembled, and gravely voted, tliat he " had
Gotham,
**
fupported the charadler of a confcientious and good
"
Chrii^ian, an-J that the thanks of this meeting are due
**
to
him
for his upright
and judicious condudl."
H
It
is
(
5°
)
When reafonlng men behold thefe things
they are more firmly convinced, that
a
fenfe of univerfal jiiftice can alone eflablifli
—
permanent order and peace
that a rigid
adherence to general principles in legiila-
from
tion can alone fecure imperfe^l beings
the fedu^lion of prejudice or paffion
;
and
thence infer the wifdom of France in this
folemn declaration of
ihouid
*'
that the
ri^ht,
be the fame to
all,
and
law
whether
it
*'
protects or puniflies
''
in its light,
**
honors, places, and employments, ac-
**
cording to their different
abilities,
"
out any other
than that cre-
a
ated
by
;
all
being equal
are equally eligible to
dlfl:in(5tion
their virtues
all
with-
and talents."
That the nation is effentially the fource
" of fovereignty," is the principle of pub**
lic
law,
againil:
which the whole
your eloquence has been
I
artillery
levelled.
Yet
of
this
affirm to be the fundamental principle of
the Britilh conftitution
isbut jufticc to add, that
;
and
tha,t
Dr. Cornwallis, Blfliop of
Litchfitld and Coventry, intcrpofed in a
becoming
whoever
manner highly
his llation.
I
denies
;
51
(
denies
it,
)
cannot maintain the titL of
Throne of
prefent Majefty to the
kingdoms.
That,
in fa5i^ his
liis
thefe
title origi-
nated in the acl of the people, not orga-
nized in any legal form, nor convened hy
any legal authority ,
controvcrfy.
The
feeriis to
beyond
all
hiftory of the Revolu-
you have endeavoured
tion
me
to
pervert.
A
fimple narrative confutes you. King James,
who
by
law
his agents
law could do no wrong, becaufe by
refponfbky and
tural
fled
him
jitjlice,
and inftruments were alone
who, upon principles of
could not
na-
forfeit for his fon,
from the kingdom, and carried with
The
his fon.
Prince of Orange re-
fufed to a6t upon the addrefs of the Peers
convened under Lord Hallifax, but
called
together a reprefentative of the people,
acknowledged by no law, nor analogous
any ajfcmbly that had ever exifed.
He
vened not the Members of Parliament
had
fat
under James the
Members of
fat
con-
who
Second — not the
any one Parliavient that had
under Charles
who had
to
fat in
— but
all the
Members
any Parliament of Charles
the Second before the fubvcrfion of char-
H 2
ters
5»
(
tcrs
)
and to thefe were added the Mayor^
;
Aldermen, and fifty Members of the Common
CouiigU of the
city
This affem-
of London,
bly invefied the Prince of Orange ^yith au^
thority to
convene a Parliament
authority
this
:
and under
fubfequent fettlement
the
was made, which has given to the Houfe of
Brunfwick their title to the Throne of
thcfe kingdoms.
It
plain that this af-
is
fembly was converted by
Prince
a
who had
no pretence of himfelf to exercife authority
within thefe kingdoms
— no claim but
recent merits in delivering the people
arbitrary
titude
power— no
title
— and accordingly
his merits
him
rendering
his
from
but to their gra-
a grateful fenfe
of
the objed: of their
him
choice,
the nation
exercife
of the Royal authority during his
life,
in
exclufion
vefted in
the fole
even of his wife, the
Princefs Mary, as well as of other branches
of the Royal family.
The Nation
in this
fettlement were certainly not governed by
caprice, but
then
by
a rational fiber choice.
preficnt fiettiement
m
Orange, was a meafure of
nience
;
The
the Prince of
preficnt
conve-
the fubfequent limitations followed
the
53
(
>
the line of legal fucccflion, as far as
judged
of the
conjijlent
country.
all Papijls,
with
the religion
The
late
we
King, his fon, and
were for ever
When we fpeak
do not mean
"Ji-as
and liberties
excluded.
of a right in the nation,
a right to he
found
in the
Aatute book, or defined by an exifting law,
for
we
are fpeaking of a right paramount^
the fource
and
origin
of
all la%v
;
hut
right to change the fucceflion to the
if
no
Crown
relides in the people, his prefent Majcfly
an ufurper, and
we
arc all rebels againfl
From
our lawful Sovereign.
the Revolu-
go higher) no perfon
tion (not to
entitled to convene a
is
legally
Parliament has appeared,
confequently no Parliament has exifted
prefume you are not willing
for 1
;
to revive
the Republican fraud of the King's authority,
fgnified by the
ment.
lefs
Hfjifes of Parlia'
In defiance, however, of the fenfe-
and Jacobites, his
jargon of Tories
Majcfty's
His
two
title
title
ftands on a rock of adamant.
origmated from the people cxcr-
cifing a right
given, and
which the God of nature has
that
title
has been uniformly
fandtioned by their confent.
To
(
To
5+
rejoice at the
)
overthrow of defpo-
tifm, and the ere(5tion of a free conflitution,
does not require a nice dljcr'imination of the
which an
cafes, in
exercije
of this right
No man
confident with moral duty.
is
ever
contended that a nation, any more than the
individuals of
which
exempt from moral
their being
compofed, are
is
it
and their rights from God,
are accountable to
God
but as no Theocracy
infer, that Britifli
authority
from
the people
;
and
exifts,
is
exploded,
Kings, deriving their
the people, are accountable to
and
fleadily appeal to the
which no
Brunfwick can
friend to the
contraditflion to the plain fadt
dutl,
was accommodated
of their
in the
allies
Revo-
truth-—
Houfe of
poffibly deny.
Whigs,
the language of the old
\t
;
as the de-
lution as decifive evidence of this
a truth
all
for their conduct
legated divine right of Kings
we
Deriving
reftraints.
in
of their con-
to the prejudices
the Tories,
who
Revolution— if they
concurred
wiflied not to
cxpofe their recent eflablifhment to the attack of thefe prejudices
—
ing
rebellions
all their care,
/^'o
if,
notwithftandv/crc excited
55
(
cited
by
t/jefe
)
prejudices in favour of the
exiled family, and againft the family of his
prefcnt Majefty,
pall,
now
to enlighten
danger
that the
the people
is
becomes a
In our anceflors this language of
duty.
prejudice
might be
the fame language
a pious fraud.
is
In us
falfehood without a
motive, and folly without excufc.
The
It
error of
your reafoning
manlfeft.
proceeds on this facrlfice to prejudice,
and the confcquent Inaccuracy
guage of the Whigs
it
is
at the
fubverts the principles
a^ed.
Thus
people,
you
the lan-
in
Revolution
:
on which they
to difprove the right of the
tranfcrlbe the language of the
convention Parliament, which derived
exijience
but
from xhcwillofthe
its
nation, fpoken
by
by an organ unlinown to our laivs,
a repre-
fentation of the people, extremely dlliimilar in its conftitution to
of Commons.
an ordinary Houfc
In the fame manner you
refer to the language of the
a(fl
ment, which you fay vefts by
of
fettle-
recognition
*
in their Majefties all the legal prerogatives
* Reflexions, p. 25.
of
S6
(
)
of the Crown, though the
that adl
was
obje6i
to veft the fok exercife
ef
of
theft
Khig WiUiam, who had no
frerogatives hi
pretence of
firfl:
but the choice of the nation.
title
In Hke manner you exult * in the
'
tlve ejaculation at
'
legifla-
the marvellous provi-
God
*'
dence and merciful goodnefs of
"
this nation, to preferve their faid
*'
ties "Royal
*'
over us on the 'throne of their ancefiors\''
td
Majef-
perfons moft happily to reiga
was made
thous;h the a6b
to overturn the
Crown on
legal fuccefjton,
and
their
who confelTedly had no
And laflly, to fum up this
Majefties,
previous
title.
argument, and
notable
tions,
in
filence
which Lords and Commons,
their heirs
complete
change
all
;
which by
this
had
as a
future right of
though you con-
be a tranfcript of an atl oi
themfelves
a^fl,
name
in the
and pofterity for ever,"
in their pofterity
ancefiors,
this
fubmlt themfelves and
abdication of
fefs this to
they
*'
objec-
all
you give us the language of
of the people,
**
to confer the
their"
very inftrument
overthrown
:
— by
which inflrument they Had poftponed
to
* Rcflcdion?;, p. 24.
King
57
(
King Williiim two
)
Frinc-^^;.-:.
;
line of fucccflion, Protijtants, re:
kingdom,
in the
no exception
:
agaiall
vyhou.
— by which
had abfolutely cut
not
off,
infant
oj;
and
Jaaies,
-.
innocent
\i\%
appreheiifion,
might be hereafter educated
he
that
in principles ^
cuil
religious, ad verfe to the liberties of the
country
:
— by which inftrument they had
Crown
eventually transferred the
Princefs Sophia, in preference
to the
to others
prior in the legal courfe of fucceliion
had on
;
and
this lin:iiiation engrafted a neiv con-
dition refpedling the religion
By
of even her poftcrity.
an
....^
jrifln^mci^t they
a tyrant and big^.t, but like wife
fon, from an
.i,^..
conveyed
eflate,
for ever,
to a
and marriage
fuch reafoning
man and
his heirs
would become the unalienable
property of thofe heirs in eternal fuccef-
—
fion.
The
ertate,
being held for the beneft rf the indi-
'vidual, is
fole ditterence is this
:\x.
his difpofal.
f the
the nation alone liavc the right
and by
it
fliall
to
jiaticny
determine
be cxercifcd.
vain attempt to puzzle a plain fub-
It is a
jecl,
whom
an
All magiftracy,
being held folely for the beneft
how
that
by involving
it
i"
in moial diflinclions,
which
5«
(
which only regard the
A man who fhould
)
exercife
worthy Ion
difinherit a
in favour of a worthlefs
act a
of the right.
moft Immoral part
flranger would
but his right to
;
difpofe of his property could not be quef-
So a nation which fhould change
tioned.
their
government,
without an
adequate
motive, without a rational profpe£l: of ad-
vancing the public happinefs, would like-
moft Immoral part
wife a6l a
right to judge for themfelves,
familiar in the exercife,
exercife
is
lb
alike unqueftiona right
and
perfectly familiar in the wri-
on the laws of nations
ters
but their
though not
This diftindion between
able.
its
is
;
;
and almofl:
all
the acknowledged rights of nations, in their
intercourfe with each other, ftand
on
this
diflindion *.
You
*
To
illuflratc this
rcafoning
be to tranfcribe volumes
—
it
is
iii
its full
extent,
would
fulTicient to fuggeft the
idea to thcfe convcrfant with writers on public law.
In a moral \\cvf the right
ot"
war, in any nation,
right to projecutc the demands of jitfit ce
ynoral view, the advcrfe
withhold.
tions
r.re
nation
\
which,
is
in
a
a
can have no right to
All the JuhfuUary rights attributed to nathe
7iiec:ns
of profecuting this original right of
jufiice^
59
(
You have
not
)
puflieJ
argument
this
from the language of public
a6ts as far as
dedu^lion will warrant. Should
fair logical
fome wicked modern
Whig
affirm,
which
he might do without apprehenfion of cenfure, that, to prevent abufcs in the executive
power of the Crown, and
to keep
Kings and Minifters within the bounds of
law, formed under our prcfent conftituthe moft important duty of Parlia-
tion,
ment,
how
not to the
triumphantly might
obfolete
you appeal,
language of the
cen-
lail
tury, but to the language of the prefent ex-
Houfe of Commons^ whofe
ifting
to prortrate
firft
a6t
was
themfelves before the Throne,
and humbly receive from the grace and
favour of his Majefty
jiijiice,
\\\z.\.
pretended natural
confequently mufi: arlfe from
it,
belong to one of the contending nations.
ing to the received
maxims of
and can only
Yet, accord-
the law of nations, not
only neutral, but even the contending nations, attribute
thefc derivative rights to both
caufe
is jufi:,
would be
\
becaufe to decide whofe
to arrogate a fupcriority,
which
annihilates the independence, and confequently the cxiftence of
the
nation.
with greater force to a
The fume
zvhole
reafoning applies
cottimunity as contraftcd
with any of its parts.
I
2
^''^gk^i
6°
(
right,
freedom of fpeech
)
?
How
can that
affembly be inflituted for the purpofc of
who
cotitrol,
cannot even debate the fub-
jecl of this pretended duty, without the ex-
prefs permiffion of the Sovereign
a
man,
to
gifted
When
?
hke Mr. Burke, condefccnds
employ fuch rcafoning, he dcmonftrates
the necejfity of reforming
abfurd
inftitu-
of laws
and renderino;
O
D the lang-ua^e
confident with the theory and principles of
tions,'
a free
fc>
Government.
How
ideas
you confound
artfully do
the following pafl'age
in
:
diftiji£l
— "The
"
conftitution* of a countrv beine; once
*'
fettled
"
preffcd,
"
force to alter
*'
the covenant, or the confent of all parties.
" Such
upon fome
is
there
tacit
or ex-
no power exifling of
is
it
compa<fl:,
without the breach of
And
the nature of a contract."
in another part of
your work you inform
us, that, independent of civil inftitutions,
no
the
right of a majority can cxifl
cofifent
of every individual
your reafoning,
is
required.
—
To that
citizen,
^^^^
Speaking of
* Appeal, p. ii8.
an
;
6.
(
)
an exprefs coniracf^ or a contract properly
your argument
fo called,
When
corre(5lIy true.
is
any number of men have pledged
for the
their faith
ftipulations,
performance of certain
nothing (hort of the
confent
of
every individual can abiolve the reft from
the
obligation, becaufe
the
exprefs or proper contra<5l
intent
of an
is, to define
each Jhall do for the benefit of others
the obfervance of faith
with which
cafuiil:.
Admit
I
am
a
is
what
— and
moral duty,
not difpofed to play the
Exclude, therefore,
all
exceptions.
the nature of a contrad to be indif-
foluble without a breach of covenant, or
the confent of every individual.
principle,
how
will
Upon
this
you juftify any change
in the confiitution, even the moft
for every part of a contra(5t
is
minute
equally bind-
ing, equally indiflbluble, without confent
How
will
you defend your
ment, which, eledled
?
favourite Parlia-
for three years, frau-
dulently prolonged their power to [even?
lias the fubfequent acquiefcencc, the conlent of the people,
tion
?
legalized
this
ufurpa-
You, who reprobate the departure
of the National /Mlembly from the letter
of the cahiers, though their adual excrcife
6z
(
)
ciic
of power has been uniformly applauded
by
a
whole
nation,
cannot advance this
argument of lubfequent confent.
far
conlent of the Britiih appears
the
tainly
more equivocal than
been given
ment,
that of the
Formally and dlJlhSly
nation.
—
tacitly,
you may
iliy,
never has
it
Pofiibly
refift.
by the contract
that
French
under terror of punifh-
they prefjmed to
if
Cer-
eftablifh-
ing our Government, the confent of every
individual
is
bound up, and involved
This
confent of Parliament.
I
fhould have chofen
In every
ment
is
government there muft
fupreme power be vefted
ment,
that all
of Government
be a fupreme Icgiflarive power.
this
the ground
to prove,
contrail on the fubjeCi
impojjible.
is
in the
Whether
in a Parlia-
a Senate, or an individual, the arguis
the fame
;
for
we
the fuppojed foundation of
A contract of fubmifiion to
fupreme power
is
aflumed.
are
all
examining
Government,
the will of this
This would be
a contr.ict: of a nature, fuch as the Courts
of Jullice, in no civilized nation, ever admitted.
It
To
affirm
it
is
palpable nonfenfe.
would be an engagement, binding only
on one party ^
which
the other might vary at
plea-
a
63
(
in the exercife
fleafure\ becaiife,
the Prince, or
latlon,
Parliament, in
)
whom
the
condn^l.
on th?
part
Icglf-
Senate, or the
the power might be
vefted, could prefcribe
own
of
the rule of their
would be an cn2:a2:ement
It
of the people
to
fubmit to the
unlimited pleajure or caprice of others
fiiuation
which man,
in
accountable to
God
as a
—
moral being
cannot
for his condmfV,
place himfelf.
To
talk of a contra^fl
giftrate
and People,
between the Ma-
in mofl: of the
exifdng
Monarchies, where the will of the Prince
is
the meafure, and a military force the
means of compelling obedience,
fult
the
common
{(t\\{f:
;
a fignal
all
am
tindlion affords.
contracft exifls.
which
this
you
honorable dif-
In our Government, no
By
the term original con-
famous vote of the convention
Parliament, our ancefiors could only
4
you
the fouleft
willing, however, to give
the benefit
trail, in the
exccpTion
difliniflion,
have loaded Dr. Price with
I
Our
but for exulting as a
Briton in this honorable
abufe.
to in-
of mankind.
Monarchy, indeed, forms
to this obfervation
is
mean
an
—
—
64
{
)
an obligation inferable from the relations in
which Governors and People
are placed
limilar to the obligations quqfi ex contradlii
of the
law
civil
corre<5lly
—
or as they are
from natural juf-
duties inferable
That the term
employed
original contrail
in this fenfe,
reference being
pa61 (for
in-
denominated in our law, implied
contra<?:s
tice.
more
none
made
to
exilled),
is
was
evident from no
any
fpecific
com-
and from the vague
and indefinite terms in which the breach of
this original
contrad
is
charged,
" an en-
" deavour to fubvert the conflituticn, and
" a violation of the fundamental laws."
What
endeavour
if a
What is an
the conjiitution P What
are fundamental laws
to
fubvert
?
people be fo unfortunate as to have no
conflitution of government, but are fubject
to
the defpotic will of one
man
?
Where
arc iuch a people to learn then- civil duties f
Where
!
but in thofe reprobated rights of
nature which our Engli fn phllofopher has
taught us,
" ought
to run
through, and be
*'
the foundation of the laws of all na-
'*
tions :"
oblientlons,
Where
which
!
but
rcafon
duce from the relations
in
in
is
thofe
mor:il
able to de-
which wc
arc
placed
!
65
(
)
placed by the hand of the Crcntor
Where
?
but from thofe principles to learn the nature and
aided
true
end cf Government, and
by the experience of
all
ages and na-
tions, to adapt their inftltutions to th.is bene-
ficent object
— the
Yet becauf^ we
happinefs of the people
?
with approbation a
hail
generous attempt to realize thefe rights in
you
France,
brand
us
againft the laws and
confpiratora
as
government of our
country.
Thefe
principles have not a tendency to
overthrow any Government, not
radically
Thefe
of the rights of nature.
fubvcrf,i-e
teach us to difcriminate between lecritimate
o
authority and ufurped power
perveifion
hands of
of the
fo
befl
— between the
inilitutions in ihc
imperfecl a creature as
and the tyranny of
a
defpot
—
the one, and to deflroy the other.
your wild idea of
to
man,
correcft
Whereas
a contra61: equally binds
the people to every fpecies of power once
eUablifhed, equally iupports the defpotifm
of
Turkey
laws
in
as the
mild adminifrration of
Great Britain.
Your
do£lrines con-
found the King of Great Britain,
K
who owes
his
66
(
Crown
his
*'
with the
(for
to
the choice of his people,
reft
of the gang* of ufurpers,'^
Europe)
enUghtened
are even in
fuch there
who
'*
)
reign, or rather rob, all
*'
over the face of this our miferable world,
*'
without any
"
allegiance of their people."
You
fort
of right or
title to
the
dwell with peculiar complacence
on the term
necejjity, as
volution of 1688.
ferve, that this
Is
applied to our
requilite
it
term imports
Re-
to ob-
a moral, not a
phyfical, necellity, defcriptive of the urgent
duty on the people
their rights
were the
The
?
evils
old fpirlt ftiould
to afiert
abufes
and vindicate
of prerogative
Suppofe the
of that day.
affume new form s\\ are not
the people, for whofe benefit
ment
inftituted, for
is
whom
all
Govern-
Governors
all
a£b in truft,
authorifed by the eternal laws
God
to
provide for the public happi-
am
afked, perhaps, by
of
ncfs
I
?
their fenfe of this duty
An unconneded
ficulties
rights
tljc
;
few
to
fliall
what organ
be declared
multitude have
encounter
in
?
great dif-
aflerting
their
and this difadvantage has enabled
to acquire
and abufc their power.
* Rcficclions, p. 17.
3
The
67
(
The
)
general difFufion of knowledge every
day dlmlnifhes
this evil.
Ixt us teach the
people to undcrftand the nature and true
end of Government, and the
avi'e
power
much
will
probably effed
of their
good,
If
without calling their force into action.
they be greatly oppreffcd, they will refill—-
happy
if in
paiiions
refinance their
that
will fubmit to the guidance of enlightened
minds
!
Egregioufly as you mifreprefent the opinions and principles of thofe contemptuoufly denominated
tion
you have
new Whigs, one
tionably do maintain,
*'
We
fairly {latcd.
*'
that
have duties, but no rights"
fay,
no
Magiftrates
—
his benefit
its
is
to
—He
therefore
proper difpofal.
is
from xh^ people
—
its
is
cre-
— derived
nature, per-
petually held in iruft for the people.
infer, that the people
a
the fole judge
Ma gift racy
and, from
is
— intended
ated for the benefit of the people
we
that
Property
right belonging to the individual
of
unquef-
rights belonging to them as indhi^
duals, given for their benefit.
for
pofi-
Hence
have the ultimate
right to decide on the nature, extent, and
K
2
dura-
68
(
)
Were
duration, of this power.
lub-
I to
ftitute for people any term defcriptive of thp
governing power in the State, you will not
In your intended
difpute the propofition.
the Judicature of Wales,
bill for reo;uiatins[
the propofition
The
into
of Judge
office
land,
held for
is
affumcd
is
Wales,
in
life
yet
;
Mr. Burke's head
as indilputable.
it
as in
Eng-
never entered
to conceive, that any
right in the individual, to adniinijler jufiice
during
could be oppofed to
life,
tlie
in-
tended reform of uniting the Judicature of
Wales with
niftered
in
that of
by an
England
additional
power of Parliament,
of conduft to
rable
to be
admi-
number of Judges
The
Supreme Englilh Courts.
our
highcfl,
—
to piefcribe the rule
Ma oi ft rates,
all
univcrfally adn:sitted.
is
ads have paflcd
define,
the
Almofl:
all
even
Innume-
to limit, modify,
prerogatives
the
and
of the Crown.
the acknowledged liberties of
the people are fandioned, not created, by
a£ls of Parliament,
condemning the ufurped
power of the Crown.
the
Crown
itfclf
The
been
has
changed by Parliament.
fore,
you
allcrt, that
"
fucccffion to
frequently
When,
there-
his Majefty's heirs,
each
69
(
and order, will come
in their turn
**
each
"
to i\\Q
)
Crown with
fame contempt of
their choice with which his Majeily has
" lucceedcd to that which he now wears,"
the
*'
you mufl mean, not
withi the
lame con-
tempt of Parliament, but of the
Were
this true,
vereignty,
**
many, did
would be "
*'
the
maxim "
whether*
*'
originate
that the So-
exercifed by one or
from the
a pohtion not
that
lis,
people,'*
worth denying
or afienting to," efpecially as
before informed
People.
*'
you have
the dijiempers
^'
of monarchy were the great Jubjcois of
^'
apprehenfion
^'
in this the d'ljiempers
^'
not in Parliament alone that the remedy
^'
fpr parliamentary diforders can be
^'
pleted
^'
there \^'*
,
;
and
rcdrefs in the lajl century
hardly,
of Parliament.
indeed,
therefore,
If,
can
it
It is
combegin
you can exclude
the interference of the people, our cafe
hopelefs indeed
!
You
;
inlult us
is
only with
difclofing the nature and extent of the evil.
" Tiie notorious infidelity and verlatility of
" Members of Parliament, in their opinion
* Appeal, p. 56.
t Thoughts on
tlic
Caufc of th.- prefent Difcontents,
p. lOI.
^
'*
of
7°
(
•-*
men and
of
)
things,"
the evil, accord-
is
ding to your dclcription
;
and
extent,
its
Members, by an indifcriminate
" ot all Ad mi niilrations *, /j^r^vc
that thele
iuppmt
"
*'
totally ban'ified all integrity
ofpublic procecdingSy
out
and confidence
have confounded
"
the belt n:ten with the worft, and
*'
eaed and
"
iag and compacting, the general order of
*'
weak-
diflblved, infteadof ftrengthen-
Government." invainyou nowendeavour
by referring to
to evade this reprefentatioa,
the fuppoied magical effect of your mutilated bill
-f-
Tour
of reform.
fent judgment of this influence^
cally ftated
in
a
is
unequivo-
publication fubfequent to
your celebrated Reflections.
You
affirm,
King of Great Britain J,
whatever concerns him as a King,
that
'
deliberate pre-
the
'^
or,
man, who combines
*
indeed, as a rational
'
Ins public intcreil
-
tisfaclion, does poiTefs a
'
and
•
France was pofleflcd of before
extenfivc
in
with
his perfonal fa-
more
real^folid^
power, than the King of
this mife-
* Thoughts on the Caufe of the prefent Difcontents,
p. ici.
t Appeal, p. 41.
* Letter to a
Member
of the National AfTembly,
p. 67.
"
rablc
/
(
*«
rable
;
Revolution."
l)our,
therefore, at this
your jiidpnenly
In
tiic
power of the
Rincr of Great l^-itain exceeds the dcpofed
defpotifm of France.
according to the
"
State/man.
maxim
of an uncmfviutionol
* muil: be always the wi(h
that an
*'
of an
**
Houfe of Commons, who are
«'
pendent upon him, Jljould have every n'ghf
imconjlittitlojial Stiitefmaii,
entirely de*
*'
of the people entirely dependent upon
It was foon difcovered,
their pieafurc.
"
that the forms of a free, and the ends of
**
an arbitrary Gov £rnmc7it, were things not
"
altoo: ether incoir.^atihk''
*'
'
It
merely difguifed,
It is
I
am
very far from adopting the extra-
vaeance of vour prefent or former aflcrtions, but merely mean to fhev/ by an ar-
gument, ad
bomiriem, the confequences of
If the
your do6lrinc.
competent
Ji anient
to
reform the difiempers of Parai the difempers oj
in the prefent,
Monarchy
in
Conftitution
tlie
lafi:
miufl:
modern Whigs,
century, the Britilh
inevitably perifh.
therefore,
this right of reform.ing
I
people be not as
Thoughts on
the
We
maintain, that
Parliament belojigs
Caufe of the prefent Dlfoontent?:,
p. 12.
to
—
(
to the Nation,
God and
of
r-
)
by the fame unalterable law
nature, by
which our
depofed James the Second.
We
anceftors
uifh their
defcendants, guided by the fame moral ne-
mo-
ceihty, to emulate the praife of their
deration,
and to refiore the Conftitution
according to
its
acknoijuledged principles,
making the Uoufe of Commons a
by
real ef-
fe^ive reprefentation of the people. Without
a thorough union of interefts with the
great body of the nation, " fuch * an aflem*'
bly
may
*'
it is
not to any popular purpofe an
be a great, awful Senate
;
but
Houfe
" of Commons."
" Government-!-," you affirm, *' is not
*' made in virtue
If fo,
of natural rights. '^
I fhould be glad to know how it is made
except by ufurpation.
No
original rights
can exift but thofe of nature.
Govern-
If
ment be not made in virtue of natural, it
can be made in virtue of «o rights for the
;
making any
previous
its
thing, precludes the idea of
exifence.
Government
**
is
Yet you
a contrivance
tell
us,
of human
f
* Tlioughtf, p. 69.
t Refle£l:on.s, p. 88.
*'
vvifdom
n
(
wifdom
'*
You
)
to provide for
plainly
mean
human
wants.'*
contrivance of the
a
ivifilom ofafczv, to provide for the ijcants
many
the
;
for the
fmgle want exprefled
of
is,
the want, out of civil fee iety^ of a fufficient reftraint
upon
their pafiions.
So-
ciety requires, not only that the pafTions
*•
"
"
of individuals fliould be fubjeded, but
that,
even
in the
mafi and body, as well
as in the individuals, the inclinations of
'*
men
"
their will
*'
brought into fubjedion.
*'
be done by a power out of themfelvesy
That
171
(hould
this
dividual
frequently
be
and their pafiions
coiitroled,
wholefome
Member
thwarted,
^Tbis can only
on every
difcipline,
of the State,
portant objetfb of fociety
—
is
that fixed laws
and eflablifhed courts are provided
end
—
that the
vernment
**
" becomes
a
confidcration
of
agreed.
reprobated Democrats of France ex-
prefsly affirm,
Rights,
*'
for this
whole organization of Go-
convenience," are propofitions
The
an im-
''
in
their
Declaration
that civil diftin6lions
founded only on public
• Rcfleclions, p. 89.
utility
of
^ can be
^ They
t Article
ifl.
,
74
(
add, indeed, that
" the
fource of
*'
)
the nation
is
eflentially
This
fovereignty."
all
you controvert, becaufe the nation mull be
controlled by a
power
be not intended to
it
didlon, from
be affirmed
Kings.
I
a foreign jurif-
right can
Go-
The fame objedlion
?
which you urge with
may
up
fet
what fource of
vernment be derived
If
out of them/elves.
refpecSl to
the people,
with greater truth of
do not fubfcribe to your fenti-
ments, that " Kings are naturally lovers
of low company *."
<'
have
the
pride, and
graded
*'
and
education,
*'
-f
Nor
fhall
I
and
approve thq
that the meanejl ofus
into ike
defers incident
were de*
or folly of Kings.
vices
Yet Kings being men,
liar
manners,
fomething more than the pride,
of gentlemen.
language,
They undoubtedly
'^
muil: have th& pecu-
to their Jiations,
They
can have no predilection for thofe equal
rights
which
tect.
Neither can
in
any
not
feleift
fociety
was
prote61ion originate
this
body, becaufe
only may, but
difllnft
inftltuted to pro-
iiiufl
fuch a body
have an interefl
from that of the people.
Speech on Reform, p. 68,
+
Speech
No other
at Briftol, p. 1
1
fource
IS
(
)
fource of government, therefoi'c> remains^
but
'*
that
*'
fource of
lows
as a
the nation
all
body of men, can be
dividual, or
'*
to
**
derived from
A
foverelgnty ;" and
it
the
fol-
confcqnence, " that not any in-
*'
any authority which
the
reftrain
eflentially
is
it."
people
?
is
entitled
npt exprefsly
What power {hall
may yet be afked.
very ingenious and juftly celebrated au-
thor,
moral fcntiments,
his theory of
in
has demonftrated, that the feelings of the
impartial
moral
fpe6lator
diftindtions,
wifdom
are
the
of
and that God in his
man the naof man But it
has thus conftituted
tural oruardian of the ri2;hts
is
flandard
—
the rough difcipline of equality which can.
alone teach each individual to refped: the
natural rights of others, or obey the great
precept of moral as well as religious duty,
to
do unto others
unto him.
he wifhes them to do
as
Aided by
this inftruftlon,
im-
planted in the heart of man, reafon has
enabled us to deduce from thefe fources a
digeft of moral duties.
Aided by the expe-
rience of different nations, in the dittcrent
ages of the world, pliilofophy has taught
the inftitutions of
Government
L 2
befl:
adapted
to
76
(
to enforce the
)
performance of thefe moral
But a fenfe of common mtereft^ In
the preat body of the people, can alone
dufies.
teach governors and governed to liften to
the voice of Philofophy
— can
alone
pre-
ferve, reform, or improve, the inflitiitions
promote the happinefs of man-
to
fitted
kind.
Led by this train of reafoning, we boldly
avow an approbation of the French Revolution,
deftroying a
ns
nature Juhverfive of
We
defpotifm
of man.
all the rights
applaud the French
in Its
I.egiflators
lay-
ing the foundation of their Government in
thofe natural rules of juflice,
**
ought
run through, and be the foundation
**
to
"
of, the
cerelv
laws of
the nation
*'
fovereignty,'*
*'
all
with
accord
**
can
which
Is
We fni-
countries.**
their
efl'cntially
and that
do(flrine,
that
the fource of
civil
diflint^ions
be founded only on public
utility
;'*
becaufe the inftitutions of Government, or
claims of Magiftracy, ought
oijcdi
to
have no other
than the public happinefs
;
and of
the wf^«j of attaining this happinefs, the
nation muft ever continue the fulc, natural,
4
leoici.
(
legitimate judges.
77
)
We
think the French
Legifiators wife in adopting general principles as the
caiife,
as
inftitutcs
of legiflation, be-
Burke well
?vlr.
obferves,
*'
^^«^-
* cannot be debauched or
*'
ral principles
**
corrupted by intereft or caprice."
thefe pofitions
we
difcover nothing adverfe,
every thing highly
but, en the contrary,
congenial to the Ipiritof our
ment.
perhaps
fanciful refinement
all,
we
own Govern-
In fome parts of the French Con-
ftitution,
tutions
In
\VQ,\\
we
;
difcover the rage of
in other parts,
infli-
worthy of imitation but above
;
difcover, in the admirable reprefen-
tation of the people, a principle of vigorous
improvement abundantly
fufficient
to cor-
real all its defe(St3.
You
judge of our principles not by our
language, or our actions, but by the heated
imagination
to
condemn.
of
an adverfary
Try
determined
us by experience of the
pad in the inflance which you have chofen.
" No perfons f were more fiercely avftiv e
* Speech on Reform, p. i^+ Appeal, p. 50.
again ft
78
(
•'
Mr. Fox and
againft
"
of
"
feveral
)
Commons,
of
agalnfl rfie
diflblved in
thefe
Houle
1784, than
Revolution-makers,
whom Mr. Bnrkc condemns ahke
" remonflrance, and in his book."
*'
Though
in his
the author cannot admit the
of " Revolution-makers,"
defcription
as
applied to himfelf orhis friends, or thefup-
pofed ferce adivity againft Mr. Fox, with
whom
he voted in Parliament, and
whom
he has ever greatly revered, he readily acknowledges, that his principles led him to
condemn the condudl of
pions in
1
friends
and
the
Houfe of Com-
784, in contradiction to his beft
neareft
Burke's candid conflruClion
thefe
words
:
" He
is
Mr.
connections.
is
given
in
perfuaded * that they
*
are totally indifferent at
*'
begin the demolition of the Conftitu-
'*
tion ;"
*'
Commons through the Crown fome
the Crown through the Houfe of ComThe beft tcft of the truth or
mons.'*
"
*'
*'
which end they
fome would deftroy the Houfc
of
;
falfehood of this imputation will be faith-
Appeal, p. 50.
ful
79
(
from the arguments
extra(^s
fill
)
at that
time employed.
The
puhhcly maintahied
the
King
mons
was the
author, in 1784,
it
be the duty of
to
to dlffolve that
who
firft
Houfe of Com-
becaufe they deflroyed the poor re«
;
mains of controul
in
our Conftitution, by
arrogating to themfelves, In the nomination
of Minlfters, the executive power of the
Crown.
Thefe were
his reafons for think-
ing fuch an attempt, if fuccefsful, would
Commons
*'
render the Houfe of
*'
than ufelefs, and totally annihilate the
'
liberties
of the country."
" Liberty*,
" more than
to the Individual,
a
is
freedom from
Self-government, or a right to
*'
" the
w^orfe
dictates
of their
own
nothing
reftraint.
ad from
minds,
is
all
*'
that the people can poffibly poflefs
*'
human laws, which have public freedom for their objccl, can do no more
'*
:
and
than fecure the adlual enjoyment of thig
**
*
Claim of
the
Houfe of Commons, &c.
p. 6,
pub-
Jifhcd 1784.
**
right
8o
(
)
right to each individual,
the encroachments
by
reprcfTing
Hence
of others.
an important diftinclion.
refill ts
— The
people at large, from the immutable nature of things, cannot poflefs other than
dejenfive
privileges
defigns, to give
and
;
them
all
pro fe fled
the a^'ive powers
of Government, are a cheat, calculated
only to advance the ambition of their
leaders.
all
the
The
which deflroyed
Republics of antiquity, was this
error,
The
people were taught to
grafp at power,
which ever mufl be the
delufion.
power of
others.
They
deed, this
power on
their favourites
thefe
favourites
their country.
might
enlift
conferred, in;
but
became the tyrants of
The
people
at
under different leaders
Rome
;
but
whether Pompey or Cacfir prevailed, the
efFe£l:
was the fame
enflaved.
w^ith
tion.
of
They
— the people were
llrugglcd
for a
time
this original fin in their Conflitu-
By
office.
laws ihcy limited the duration
They
divided and lubdivided
the powers of Government.
Tluy
cre-
ated peculiar Maglftrates to watch over
the public freedom
:
but
in tlie tribunes
" of
8i
(
" of the
" ments
)
Ciclar found
people,
the inftru-
of his ambition at the very hour
" he was marching his army to fubduc
" the Repiibhc.
In this country the
"
people have adopted a
*'
They have renounced
' power, which
" can
*'
it is
ever enjoy
all
mode.
prctenfions to
impoffible the people
and contenting them-
;
with what
felves
difFcretit
pradicable in
is
Go-
" vernmcnt, they have retained only de" fenf.ve privileges to themfelves, or their
"
*'
"
"
reprefentatives, vcfling the adiive
powers
of Government in an hereditary MonThe whole fabric of the Britifh
arch.
"
Conftitution confifts of bulwarks erected
but as the
againft the abufe of pov/er
*'
Conftitution
the executive
'*
power
:
in
" framed
**
power
*'
rity,
"
*'
«'
*'
»'
"
a
has
veiled
Monarch,
all
our laws are
to regulate the exerclfc
of
this
The whole authoHoufe of Commons,
in his hand*.
even of the
Ico-ifl.itive
to thefe
and
inquifitorial,
two objeds
;
is
direded
to flipulate in the
form of laws, the terms on which the
Monarch Is permitted to govern, and to
Let the Houfe
ufurp the executive power
enforce the obfervance.
of
Commons
^i
»'
— what
y
82
(
)
"
— what
**
All exifting Liws are a dead letter
" who
fecurlty remains to the people?
enforce
fhall
*'
when
'*
thefe laws,
" abufe
thofe,
whofe duty
are
obfervance
their
" What new laws, adapted
" of thisnew power, can the
for
;
?
to the control
people expect,
it it
become
to propofe
the
parties in
I
" Men who
have
**
fcenes of parliamentary
*"
ally thofe
" bauched
bufy
the
attended
debate, efpeci-
whofe minds have
been
de-
by the mixture of executive go-
*'
vernment^ which corrupt Mintfiers have
*'
introduced
*'
may
*'
all
*'
reprefentatlves, are, and
*'
public freedom
"
fenfive privileges.
Yet nothing can be
*'
more demon^lrably
true
"
into
the
Houfe of Commons
be furprifed at the affertion, that
the rights of the people, and of their
efft(5l
is
mud
be,
their obje6l,
\
of the application
while
mere de-
and the happy
is
principally
**
owing
**
adiive
**
Monarch.
*'
prefentatives to the conftituents, and the
*'
whole nation each
^
to the
exchfve
pofl'effion
of the
powers of Government by
This
fituatioii
the
binds the rc-
to the other in
the
" indiP
h
(
*"*
)
common
indiffoluble bonds of one
—
common
in-
**
terefl:
*'
equitable laws, and compelling the ob-
*'
fervance.*'
Again
*,
a
*'
intcrefl in
The true
enadting
qucftion, therefore,
ftripped of thefe falfe colours, will
Is
it
mons
the duty of the Houfe of
Com-
prerogative of
nam-
to ulurp the
ing Minifters
no difficulty
Commons
On
?
this queftion I
pofleffing this
power, can no
its
inftltu-
but will become a curfe and fcourgc
the country,
to
have
The Houfe of
in deciding.
longer anfwer the purpofe of
tion,
be,
from the moment
in
which they fucceed/'
The
**
dlre<^
means of fecuring the
and independence to
**
bleffing of liberty
*'
the
*'
the judicial authority.
*'
independence of Judges
"
herence to
**
Jury, that admirable inftitution, which
individual, are the laws relative to
known
Hence
the ftridt ad-
;
rules
;
the
* Claim of the Houfe of Commons, &c.
iiflied
the in-
trial
p. 6,
by
pub-
1784.
M
2
**
com-
(
84
)
**
commits the
fafety
of each individual to
"
"
"
"
twelve men,
who
have an equal interefl
with
himfelf in the general feeurity.
Hence,
that
likewife,
excellent
writ
which
reveals the fccrets of prifons,
'*
fuffers
not even the necefiary means of
*'
jullice to be
*'
oppreffion.
"
laws, if there be none. to enforce the
**
obfervance
" of
*'
the
employed
to the
Of what
and
purpofe of
ufe are all thefe
The inquifitorial power
Houfe of Commons is here the
?
defence of the fabjecl.
" can examine
This affembly
into every evafion or viola-
*'
tion
**
can attain that
**
every abufe which individuals would
of private or public
" tempt
*'
in vain.
perfe<£l
Minifters,
they
:
inveftigation of
or
They
their
can im-
inftruments.
*'
But
"
confiitent with the nomination of
is
at-
Thefe abufes may be
protecled by Minifters.
" peach
right
the difcharge of this their
firft
—
—
duty
Mi-
" nlflers
with the participation of their
" power
with having themfelves an in" tercft in the abufes they fliould corredt ?
*'
A
^'
cumflances, would quickly become par-
Houfe of Commons, under fuch
*'
cir-
ties
;
8s
(
(i
"
ties
)
the opprefTioii of a
in
plundered
people.
*'
To
provide for the obfcrvancc of fublaws, by
the moil: exa<£t admi-
*'
fifting
**
niftration of juftice,
**
avail,
*'
obtaining equitable laws, as the rule of
*'
condu^l,
**
compelled to obferve.
**
might annihilate
"
inftant.
*'
feared,
little
the people had no means of
if
which
Governors were
their
A
their
all
for
rights in an
little to
undifguifed violence
but
;
it
law
lingle
This, indeed, were
" dom attempted
*'
would be of
is
be
fel-
requires all the
watchful jealoufy, which the enjoyment
" of
thefe ineflimablc rights can infpire, to
" guard
encroachments
againft the daily
and to repair the frequent
*'
of power,
*'
breaches,
'*
of Government,
"
inftitutions,
*'
the people of England have delegated
*'
to their reprefentatives
**
and
*'
duty of the Iloufe of
**
the prefent pretenfions of that
»*
confident with the upright difcharge of
it
which the
mufi:
forms
far
fyftem
niofl perfect
like
all
fuftain.
the
in
other
human
This
office
Parliament
mofh important
Commons.
Arc
Houfc
"
this
86
(
)
'*
this their
*'
exercife of this
*'
with the execurive authority
"
State,
*'
exercile
;
*'
prov^ed
infufficient
*'
they are to exad:
*'
pofTible, as will preclude future evalion.
*•'
One great
'*
rious caufes, foreign
moft important duty
truil:,
In the
?
they are to flipulate,
of
the terms ami conditions of
the
its
and where former laws have
evil
to
new
prevent
laws,
abufe,
fuch, if
which had ar ifen from vaas ive/i as domefic^
" was the influence 'which the executive Ma" s'ifl^^^^ ^'^''^ attained in our National Af
" femblies. 'The private inter eft of indivi" duals almnf flenccd the national interef^
" ivhich ought ever to dictate the refolutions.
" of the Houfe of Commons. Remedies
*'
from time
''
Laws have been made to exclude Placcmen from ieats in that Houfe, and even
*'
*'
from
" The
to time
have been applied.
a voice in the elcdlion of
caution was necellary,
Members.
left
the exe-
*'
cutive Magiftrate Should be able, by in-
*'
fiuencing the voice of the majoiity, to
**
prefcribe, in the
" of
his
own
**
Icfs, if,
*^
in other
form of laws, the rules
conduct.
by the
Will
eleciion
()f
this evil be
Miniflcrs, or,
words, by the exercife of the
" RoyaJ
8/
(
)
Com-
the Honfc of
*'
Rov;il
*'
51KHIS,
*'
bccr.mcs the advancement of their
*'
power
•*
of Legiflators, prcfcribe the rules
aiuhox'itv
<nntral inter.
tlie
?
in
Will not they,
" confonant
own
to their
(1
of the body
own
the character
in
mod
views, regardlefs
commu-
of the
*'
of the general
*'
nity
'*
lelvesof the executive authority, which
*'
they were appointed to watch and con-
"
trol, is, in
*'
tion of their trufl
**
tion of confidence
*'
can the people confide
The
?
intcrefl:
attempt
my judgnient,
;
a dire6t abdica-
for the very
is
thcm-
poficfs
to
founda-
How
fubvcrted.
in,
how
can the
f people be reprcfented by, thcfe, ivho no
" longer have a common inter efi ivitJ? ibsm*'
fehes ?
The
natural
*'
raifcd to ftations
of public truil,
**
advancement of
their
*'
interefl:
"
be general liberty.
*'
can leprcls
"
*'
that
of the people
body with the
power.
rhe
The
everrnufl
The only
band that
of
this dlftinclion,
unite the
rcfr
is
at large
rlic cftlift
ever can
own
men
of
interell:
rcprefentati\e
of the nation,
is rlic
impoffibility of obtaining a ptr-
*'
utter
**
n'.ancnt
power
to themfelves.
"*
Befidci^
S8
(
**
)
Bcfides the judicial authority,
which
**
fecures the rights of the fubjecl, as de-
**
fined
*'
giflative
*'
form of laws, the
*'
thefe rights, there yet remains a clafs
" of
by the exifting laws, and the
rights
le-
power, which prefcrlbes, in the
on
rules of deciding
which do not
fo properly relate
*'
to the individual as to the
*'
munity.
whole com-
Thefe may be confidered
" the property of
" great temptation
as
the State.
Here
to
becaufe the
abiije
which
;
is
the
*'
mifapplication,
*'
is
*'
the general objed:.
*'
of thefe rights
**
the
**
means, and judging of their application,
'*
remains to Parliament; and on
a fortune,
loft in
is
exclufive
to the individual
the magnitude of
The
a6lual exercife
vefted in the
is
King;
power of providing the
this fepa-
which our
**
ration depends the whole control
*'
Conjlitution
has
*'
Parliament
previoufly
'*
the fervice propoied will be for the ad-
yet
Thus
ejlablified.
judge, whether
" vantage of the State but to remove
" temptation of betraying their truO:,
;
*'
grant, if proper,
*'
King
'**
of
muft be made
— Parliament
men
decide
the
the
to the
what number
arc required for the land
"
and Tea
fervice
;
89
(
)
•*
fcrvicc; but the difpofal of commiffions,
*'
toecrhcr with
*
forces, belongs unalienably to the
command
the
of thofe
King.
" Parliament, in the mutiny bill, annually
" prefcribe the mode of governing the
*'
army; bat
*'
be
*'
afcertain
"
"
that
;
hands
— Parliament
fliall
be applied to
what fums
this lervicc,
railed
own
their
in
government can never
and
how
thefe
fums
fliallbe
but the colledion and adminif-
" tration of this money mui\ be in the
" hands of the King. The fame rule prc*' vails in every other public fervice, which
'*
Let the
the neceditics of ftate demand.
" Houfe of Commons, by cabals among
*' themlelves, name the Minifters who are
" to exerciie thefe powers, which the Con* fiitutlon has entruded to the King, and
" they have from that moment a dired: in" terefi: in tlie abufe. Will Parliament be
army ? The greater the
the more commiffions will be in
*'
jealous of the
'*
arniv,
*
their diipofal
**
tiitir
^-
cituus
'*
verning the army, to prevent
''
ing
hands.
an
in
;
the
greater the force in
Will Parliament be
foll-
prefcribing the rules for goits
inftrument of tyranny
N
becom?
The
" tyranny
90
(
)
tyranny will be their own.
Will Par-
liament be fevere economifls in the ma-
nagement of the public purfe
lous hope
The
!
larger the
Ridicu-
?
fums
raifed
on the people, the greater the profufion
in
every public fervice
leaders in Parliament,
;
more the
the
and their depen-
dants will fatten on the public fpoils.
7'Ac unconjihutional mixture
of the
and executive powers of
tive
legijla-
late
years
has been the principle caufe of the irafeful
expenditure of public money ^
mojl made ba?ikrupt
caufe has already
the country.
This
prevented any
very
account being required of thofe to
ftricSt
whom
but
the truft has been committed
modern
the
do<ftrines
poflibility
of any futute
Who
to
arc
Parliament,
niflers
—
ters
who
;
preclude a
inveftlgation.
attempt this duty
— who
or, to
ers
which has aU
?
The
have named the Mi-
are already
become
parties
fpeak more corre(£ily, the Lead-
who are, the Minif
The moment in which
of this Parliament,
thcmfdves
I
the nomination of Minifters in the Houfe
of
Commons
Conflitution,
is
undcrflood
we may
to
be the
expc<fl to fee rival
"
factions
9'
C
*'
)
upon
dividing or uniting, not
fiidlions
*'
any fen fe of public duty, or principle of
**
public condu(fl:,
'*
quarrelling on the divifion, of the public
*'
Ipoils.
No
conformity of fentiment
" no concurrence
*'
but uniting to feize, or
in the profccution
:
of a
The
lole confideration will be, how many
" votes each leiider can command to form
**
a majorit}^, and how to accommodate
public intcreft, will be required.
*'
*'
the dillribution
*'
ment,
*'
dividuals.
*'
no longer depend on the merits of the
*'
queftion,
*'
which has apportioned the plunder of an
'*
oppreifed country."
This
to the
the
previous treaty
was written again
parties
name
to
in
in
the
the at-
Houfe of
which
cafe defcribed
**
a
man,
**
among
**
gard,
•*
anxiety for the fate of others,
**
go
to
ft:
the Minift:crs of the
This was the
Mr. Burke,
Houfe will
votes of the
but on
tempt of united
Crown.
ambition or avarice of in-
The
tra^fl
Commons
of power and emolu-
by
who,
various objects of his equal reis
fccure
much
of fome,
and
is
full
of
apt to
greater lengths in his prcI*
2
**
ferenci
r-
(
"
"
)
ference of theobjc^ds of his* immediate
1o1i'...l-vk:-
out any
" Yet Mr. Burke cannct point
;!--e in
p.
tiiis,
or in any writings
of the author, unbecoming a man,
lieves
*'
who
members of tlirec
natures," " and thinks it
ot the three
'
to
'
very different
'
his duty to prelerve each of thofe
'
bers in
'
proportion of power."
its
proper phvje, with
Very few years had
*
ought
that the Briiifh Conflitution
conud
be-
its
memproper
elapfed L>cfore the
author had occafion to maintain, that th«
of parties was precilely
'
fituadon
*
v^erfed,
'
continue the fame
i-
the interefl: of the
but
;
and
we
are
re-
people
taught
con-
'
this ufeful lefTon, that, amidft the
'
tentions of ambitious individuals, -^Jlrldi
*
attachment
'
Conftitution,
*
people, can alone give permanent lecu-
*
rity to the rights
forms and Jfirit
to the
in
the
of
great
all."
oj the
body of the
The avowed
principles of the author necefliirily led
him
^ Appeal,
p. 32.
t
of
Thoughts on
Commons,
the prcfcnt Proceedings of the
Houfc
p. 1, publilhed in 1786.
to
n
(
)
to reprobate the frantic partition of
Royal
authority, attempted in the intended Re-
gency
becaufe
;
thought
he
powers proportioned
fame
the
to the fcime etid at all
times equally neceflary
—
a truji in the in-
dividual created for the file benefit of the
Condemning
people.
alike the objed: and
the means, he reprobated the fubftitution
of the great
in
an hereditary Monarch
fcal for
legiflation
as
;
if it
was intended
hold out Monarchy to contempt and
cule,
by proving the mind
ofi
not involved in the idea of a
to
ridi-
man was
King.
That
the
the fiiverfmith makes the King, or that the
people are his property, our .author equally
difclaims
;
"
maintained, that as
but
the
**
powers of Government are
trufis
given
•'
for the benefit ofi the community^ not
of the
" Individual^ the exercife of thefe powers
" cannot be fufpended by the difability of
"
the trufiee to await his fiuture
That
as
the
principle
d'ifpofal'*
upon whicli the
powers of Government
*'
aEtive executive
"
are rendered hereditary in
*'
the King,
'*
ever placed beyond the grafp of ambi-
"
tious citizens,"
4
is,
one perfon,
that thcje powers
it
followed,
may
"
be for
that
'*
the
Heir
9+
(
)
'*
Heir Apparent, having the fame mterejl
'*
in the prefervation of thefe
*'
as the reigning
prerogatives
King," pofleffed
claim
a
which the two Houfes of Parliament conld
not impeach
though the right and power
;
of the people to new model the' whole Govern-^
ment * was exprefsly admitted.
He concluded, that as
own
fecurity
title
to the
*'
it
is
to prefcrve
Monarchy
law of the
our
ncccfiary for
as
the hereditary
fundamental
a
Confliitution,
principle
excludes every
dual, and
all
bodies of
fame
the
-f
other indivi-
men, from
parti-
cipating with the Heir Apparent of full
age, the exercife of regal power, during
the incapacity of the King.
between
diftin^lion
demife of the
tual
Crown
fingle
and an acis,
that the
riccht
of the Kinjr to refume the Grovern*
ment
Tnv\{i
be uniformly acknowledged
a continual exercife
his
name
ment
;
is all
* TlioiigTits
wf
this cafe
The
Commons,
and
\yy
of the regal powers in
this uniform
acknowledg-
which the God of Nature pef*
on the
prcffiit
Proceedings of the Houf*
p, 8, publiflied in 1786.
t Ibid, p. 3.
*'
mits
95
(
^'
mits
him
" pacity
" power
"
"
fore,
)
perfonally to poflTefs until a ca-
rcfumc the adual exerciic of
to
The
(hall return.
whether the King ih^W per-
not,
is
quefi:ion,therc-
Royal power himieif,
finally exercife the
^*
for this the
''
bited;
God
of Nature has prohi-
hut whether
the
exercife
of the
" executive (hall be united with thelegif" lative power in the two Houfes, or de^'
'*
"
volve on the Prince, the hereditary
cejfion
being
pojibllity
of
cflabliflicd,
to
Whether
this union.
fiic-
exclude
a
thefe
" powers, once united, (hall again be fe" parated, muft depend on the pleafure of
two
and that the
*'
the
''
of Great Britain
^*
pleafure, 1 aifirm not to be the
^'
the Conflituticn
Houfc-^s
;
lliall
liberties
depend on their
law of
on the contrary, our
:
depend on
balance of the
'*
liberties
^*
three Eftates, upheld in their refpeBtve
^'
rights
by the people."
What was
(Every body.
the
done,
A
is
vile
in the recoil<.elion
bill,
of
fcramble for power in
Houle of Comtnons eniued.
gency
jrity,
tlic
A
Re-
parcelling out the Royal autho-
lufpending
in
lome
pai:.C5 its
exercile,
was
96
(
was framed,
)
as if the trufts
of Government
had been the private property of the King.
The
great feal was introduced to aft the
part
of King.
The
votes of individuals
feemed to hang on the daily reports of
human
mife-
private madhoufes,
were
phyficians; and thofe fmks of
ry,
public and
vifited to calculate the
Thefe are fcenes \\hich
King's recovery.
dilgrace the
to
"
"
government of
a
country, and
which Mr. Burke's maxim may
applied
''
probability of the
:
" With fuch
eyes, our feelings
ries
—and when
ings are true,
When
the
juftly be
things before our
contradift our theo-
this is the cafe, our feel-
and our theories are
falfe."
French Legiflators cnaftcd
Regency,
precifely our author's idea of a
the fubftitution of the next heir to
the fame powers in the
name of
during his pcrfonal incapacity
;
ad with
the King^
when they
adopted his favourite principle, fo eflential
in his
judgment
a total fepar at ion
cutive
powers
to a free
of the
in
their
Government, by
legijlative
new
and
exe-
Conftitution,
not to applaud their labours, would be to
condemn
himfclf.
But does
it
follow, in
any
97
(
)
niiy fair or jull: rcafoning, that bccaiife
he
thinks the rights of natural jufticc ought to
be the foundation .of
Government—
all
or thinks, with Mr. Burke,
"
principles
*'
rupted
**
that general
cannot be debauched or cor-
by
caprice ;"
or
intercli
and
thence deduces, that general principles are
the fafejl and purejl fource of legiilation
if
;
he maintains, with Mr. Burke and his
friends,
own
his
ideas
on the Regency,
though adopted by France; or
Burke's favourite
plan
agninil;
Mr.
of an arljlocracy^
governing both Prince and People^ that a
I'e-
paration of Icgiflative and executive powers
was
a wife
meafure of the French, and
perfe6lly conformable to the theory of the
Britilh Conflitution
in any hiir or juft
— does
it
follow
,
I lay,
realbning, that he m.uf^
indifcriminately approve the whole I>egiliation of France,
Jianct's greatly
much
dijfimllar^
feek to efMbliih
the whole in this country
wifh
to transfer the
under circum-
lefs
fpirit
fubjocr h:^s been conceived,
May he
?
in
-i.wiS.
whicji the
by
reeailitig
the acknowledged principles of the
Conditution
vigor
into
action,
to
not
l>ricilh
renovLitc its
;
There
(
There
is
9S
)
no part of the new Government
of France fo eagerly approved, by
ties^
judicial
their
as
Ccnftitution
none which on paper appears
much
an
all
affirm,
argument
that our laws
yet
;
to verge fo
towards vliionary excefs.
irrefiftible
par-
It
were
country to
in this
have long fccured
perfonal independence, exempting Britons
from the
individual particular oppreflions
under which other nations have groaned.
None,
therefore,
in
Vv'ill,
this
kingdom,
*'
incorporate tkemfelves for the utter over-
**
throw of the body of
'*
ecclefiaftical, and,
*'
fyftem of
*'
new
**
the French nation."
its
its
with them, of the whole
manners, in favour of the
Conflitution, and
ble to trace
their fourcc
laws, civil and
even thefe
— the
modern ufages of
Yet
impofli-
it is
Britifli bleflings
adminiftration of juftlce
by the people themselves, without
povering
the fourca of abufive
of the
dlf-
eftablifli-
ments, of enormous debt and taxes,
total exclufion
to
pfxplk from
all
in a
(hare
in Leeiflation.
Here France triumphs
tUF.e is, in jadt^ what the
!
Their LegiflaBritifh is
merely
in
99
(
*'
in theory,
*'
a
)
Government by popular
rc-
prefentation." Pairing by the apportion-
ment of
tory,
(which
may
and
taxation,
population,
terri-
poffibly be rather a thea pra6lical advan-
oretic refinement than
tage), the people nominate eledlors in the
proportion of one to an hundred adive
Thefe nominations
zens.
tricls
riots,
are
made
in dif-
that the
of fuch moderate extent,
drunkennefs, and other
citi-
evils
of our
popular elections, are for ever excluded.
Theadive
truft
citizens are fo numerous,
of the electors
and the
fo fugitive, that neither
the means nor temptation to corrupt can
exift.
The
electors are
no fooner kfwwn,
than they proceed to nominate reprefentaneither
tives to the National Aflembly,
time nor opportunity for intrigue being
admitted, no other foundation of choice exifting than public opinion.
of
this
Aflembly,
fo
The
renovation
chofen, every
years, and the total exclufion of
bers from
iill
its
two
Mem-
participation of executive
Go-
vernment, promlfe an incorrupt organ by
which the public mind may fpeak in Legll" To follow, not to forje, the
lation.
" public inclination to give a dirciSlion, a
" form.
02
;
loo
(
*'
"
"
)
form, a technical drefs, and a
of the com-
fan<5tion to the general fenfe
niunity,
is
fpeclfic
the true end of Legiflation*."
Is it poliible for
Mr. Burke, with
this fen-
timent engraven in his heart, to reprefent
the French Conflitution as one
<'
anarchy," one
To
'*
fyilem of
digeft of confufion !"
'•
fpeak with decency, and at the fame
time with truth, of that aflembly, which
in
England we
tion,
*'
is
popular reprefenta-
call a
extremely
the being of Parliament,
fays
Mr. Burke, " no
" been
"
"
I
Againfl:
am
f
fatisfied,"
have ever
defigns
entertained fince the Revolution.
Every one muft
*'
"
difficult.
ftrongly the
perceive,
intereil:
that
it
is
of the Court to have
{oxnt fecond caufe inter pofed
between the
The gentleCommons have an
" Miniflers and the people.
" men of the Houfe of
" intereft equally ftrong in
" part of that intermediate
**
ever they
may
*
Mr. Burke's
t
Thoughts on
tents, p.
hire out
fuftaining the
How-
caufe.
the ujufrutl of
Letter to Brlftol, p. 52.
the
Caufe of the prefent Difcon-
n.
"
their
—
-o-
(
"
"
)
their voices, they never >vill part
and
the fee
Mr. Burke,
According
Inheritance,^''
tlie
CourPleniere^ by
Iloufc of
Commons
is
to
thut
which the dechning defpo-
tifm of France attempted to conceal
tures
with
from the pubhc view.
its
Another
fea-
ele-
gant and accomphihed writer denominates
the Houfe of
"
"
Commons
'*
a
cumbrous and
expenfive chamber"^' for regiftering Minifterial
Thele defcriptions
edicts."
convey imperfect
The
ide^s.
of that afl'embly
irldf
is
conftituiion
the
perennial
fource of wafleful prodigality, which con-
fumes the
of the State, while the de-
vitals
feats of that aflembly are
perpetually ag-
gravated, and acquire daily (Irength from
the increaling corruption Vi'hich that prodigality engenders.
were more
Perhaps there
idle debates,
redeeming million of
not,
an exigence.
annual revenue
but
if tliis
habiiual
is
never
than whether the
IMr. Pitt has, or
A
has
miUion furplus of
in itfelf a ieriousobje£l
fuppoled million were Jive, the
hunger
of our
tyileiii
would
quickly demand additional fupplies.
* Mackintofh's
VinJi;;i.'e
Gallicx,
p.
Since
338.
the
(
102
)
the peace, extraordinary
required
new
armaments have
taxes (beyond
the furviving
burden of wars) to the amount of an annual million of pretended temporary duration
but the profpedl of relief daily dif-
;
folves
new
amidfl
follies.
Thirty-five
years, one half of the ordinary life of
man,
have added to our public debt an accumulation of nearly
two hundred
millions.
That
the fame caufes will not continue to operate
the fa?ne effeBs, were an hope more vifionary than the waking dream of projector
ever created.
That the Houfe of Commons
nary of genius, ferves only to
Knowledge,
raife
talents, eloquence, all that can
and adorn the individual,
in an
a femi-
gild our ruin.
may enhance
his eltimated price, but can fulfil
duty
is
no public
afTembly where party attach-
ments are the
fole
acknowledged
virtue.
In this afTembly of pretended control
inquiries are
of public trufl
A
refilled.
is
all
total dcreH<5lion
difguifcd to the
more
in-
genuous under the lemblance of fupporting
aMinifler, while the truly zealous partlzan
applauds the wafte,
which,
4
by feeding
tlie
the fordkl mercenaries,
Even the
lanx of his friends.
gufted with
the
confli<5ls
pha-
the
fwells
people, dif-
of party, with
coaUtions and anti- coalitions, are led by degrees to regard the whole as a fcene of
contention for power, in which they can
have no
pey
Whether
interefl:.
;
cufts,
and devour
until tax-gatherers
Thefe
fe3.s
m
evils
fwarm
proceed from two radical dc-
firft,
;
ts control
*'
obferves,
"
control,
is
',
terms
;
for as
Mr. Burke juftly
what
for this ever
is
know
a contradi^ion
of a few^
that
it
in
ever mufl generate
the objection that
—
;'*
muft be the domineer-
is
;//^«)'.
made
cxclulion of Miiiifters from the
Commons
to
fometimes called
the cppreflion and plunder of the
I
and
contradidlory and impoflible
reprefentation,
ii:g interefl
m/.v-
an ajfembly
authority,
to exercife
fecondly, from
unequal
Houfe of
from the unnatural
ture of executive government in
formed
like lo-
the labours of man.
all
the conftitution of the
Commons
Pom-
burdens continue to in-
prevails, their
creafe
Cicfar or
to an
Houle of
would devolve the executive
'04
(
cutive
)
Government on men of kcondary
To
talents.
prejudice,
thole
which
who
cannot conquer the
eloquence
the fplendld
power
dilplayed in thefe contentions for
is
too apt to beget," it were vain to obferve,
that the really uieful duties of executive
government
are
formed by the routine of
without any great
may
If
men
well difcharged by
and who,
office,
of imagination,
effort
be coniidered as parts of the machine.
minds fplendidly endowed do
engage in
affairs,
marked with
ruin.
of Cabinets, to
their
paths
To mix
fettle
effectively
ever
arc
in the intrigue
the imaginary balance
of power, to impole a form of government
on one relu£lant people,
of doiiiinion
fuits
to another
to adjuft the limits
—
thefe ruinous pur-
always engrofs fuch minds,
who feem
not to be conlcious of their pow ers, unlefs
they wield the armies and
Whether
State.
navies of the
their projefts be l^jccefs-
ful or defeated, decides only the
the mifchief»
expenfive,
The
Their projects
and tbe people
proper icenc for great
gillatioii
—
to devclope
meafure of
are
always
are opprcffed.
taleiits
is
le-
the princi])les, and
pravticallv to aj)ply the jma-xims oi that glo-
rious
105
(
i-ious
Icience— the
)
fciciice in
civil
giving protection to nQpnkind.
orJcr of
But
to dif-
charge this Important duty, worthy to engrofs
the grcateft talents, and to
moft extended
him
the
fill
manmufl: bring with
life, a
into the le'rvice of his country a heart
devoted to the public
contrary,
lie
intereft.
If,
on the
be embarrafl'cd with pre-con-
ceived plans of perfonal
vulgar acceptation of the
talents will be
ambition,- In the
terjn,
employed, not
the ways of truth, but
the greatefl
In teaching
to con-
to perplex,
found, and to Ipread a delufivc cloud before
The
the eyes of the natioi:.
tion of G^reat luminaries
age in which they
live,
is
and
proper ambi-
the
to inilrudl
to ere(fl for pof-
terlty the edifice of public happlnefs
on the
folid bafis of eternal truth,
.The fecond
of
Commons
of eledion
;
radical defect of our
is
for
Houfe
the mcide, or rather modes,
time,
accident,
and the
Gothic origin of our Government, have
given fuch various and fantaftic rights of
eledlon, as by the exccfs of abfurdlty elude
all
that
reafoning.
The
41,000 eledors,
jp
refult,
for
however,
Is,
the moft part of
that
.06
(
that condition of
life
)
which expofes them
of corruption, return 369
a large majority of that aflembly,
to the fedu<5tions
Members
;
mifcailed an
Houfe of Commons.
eled:ors are manao-ed
lity
by thofe
who
Such
with the iitmoft
faci-
the receipt and
poliefs
money; while
remains of independence among the
expenditure of the pubHc
the
elected
muft be ever extinguifhed by the
immenfe patronage of the Miniflers of the
Crown.
The eiFedl
foning mind would
has been fuch as a reaforetell
— extreme
pro-
fuiion, a continual j^nticipaticn of the re-
iburces of the country, an accumulation
almoft without remiffion of public debt,
now
arrived to a magnitude
which
depreffes
and crufhes
the induilry of the country,
out the lives of our poorer fellow citizens in
While
j^enury and want.
tinues, thefe,
and
many
the caufe con-
other evils of per-
verted legiilation, mull: continue to operate
with accelerated force, until public convulfions tnay prolxibly eiifue, equally deflruclivc
of the order of the
to private property.
of
^liefe evils,
f Commous,
ftate,
What
and dangerou.s
is
no man can doubt.
elected
by
a
thq fource
An Houfe
few, and actuated
10?
(
)
ated by the private intereft of
Members,
its
cannot exprefs the pubHc will, or confult
the
common
interefts
Mr. Burke has
liberation,
fame caufe.
of a whole people.
repeatedly, and with de-
nfcribed
all
our evils
The * gentlemen
*'
to
the
of the Hcufe
of Commotis have an mtereji equally Jlrong
in fuftaining the part of that interme-
*
'
However they may
hire
'
diate
*
out
'
never will part with the fee and inheri-
*
tance."
'
which operated without
'
out violence
'
verted the 'eery antagoniji into the injiru'
'
ment of power
'
felf
'
renovation-,
'
the
'
tended
*
ftltute for a prerogative, that,
being only
'
the offspring of antiquated
prejudices,
*
caufe.
the ujufru£i of their
/7
*'
An
influence +," he
noife,
tells us,
and with-
an influence which con-
;
;
which contained
perpetual principle of
and which the
profper ity of
to
voices, they
the
in it-
growth ^nd
diflreJTes
a7id
country equally
augment ^ was an admirable fub-
Thoughts on
the
Caufe of the prefent Difcontents,
p. 12.
t Ibid. p. 13.
p 2
-
*'
had
:
'°8
(
had moulded
?*
-*'
iiflible
^'
tion."
The
But * what
*'
me, what
*'
mind
^
rupt
"
eifecls
to,
confefs
I
lions
was uppermofl with
was the redu611on of
which
der
;
pe^
at a
defcribcs
which
is itjelf
my
;
all dijor-
more than
loads us
of debt
that ccr-
the perefwial
of ^^^ prodigality^ and of
JP^'^'^S
*'
thus
dilTolu?
bent the whole force of
I
ififtue?tce,
^'
and
Mr. Burke,
fubfeqiient,
''
'
in its original ftamiiia iiTC'?
principles of decay
long
riod
)
mil-
which takes away
all
" vigour from our arms, wifdom from our
"
councils, and every
*'
and
**
of our conftitution."
clares,
credit
'*
**
that a
*'
deri'
*'
can
n:icn
-{-
fhadow of authority
from the moft venerable parts
It is
remedy
Mr. Burke de-
not in Parliament alone
parliamentary difor-
for
can he completed
it
met
begin there^
at a
;
hardly^ indeed^
Yet when gentle-
tavern with perfect good hu-
mour, exprels, in the
of toafts, fentiments far
he brands them
convivial
fhort of
language
Mr. Burke,
as incorporated for the over-
throw ot the laws and government of
tlieir
country.
* Speech oa Reform, p.
i.
t Tiipwghts, p. xcp.
-
1^9
(
111
'ivith
)
his apology for hinifcif,
inconiiftency,
when
when charged
this inconfiilency
was proved upon him by cxtradls, faithfully
'taken from h'ls own fuhl'i cations^ deliberately
printed many months after they were comand
pofed,
twenty years, Mr. Burke
during
periods
difi^erent
at
intreats
gentle reader the
mod liberal
an indulgence Jo
liberal as
from the
indulgence
almoft to admit
the charge — " A man who, among
" objeds of
—
his equal regard,
is
various
iecure of
of
^'
fome, and
''
others,
^'
preference of the objeds of his immedi-
^'
ate folicitudc than
" done.
A
leems
^'
reprobate
*'
of
of anxiety for the
fate
apt to go greater lengths in his
is
^'
full
man
Mr. Burke has ever
to undervalue, to vilify^
and
danoer."
often
fo circumftanced
and almojl
difozvn thofe that are * out
He
then
this
illuftrates
fmgular apology by a flory as applicable
the hiftory of the Little
as
Red Riding-hood,
tht frantic pajjion of King Priam over the
dead body of Hector, driving from him his
furviving fons,
iirfl:
who
attempted toftem the
torrent of his grief.
* Appeal,
" This
is
th«
p. 32.
^^
voic«
"
"o
(
"
)
voice of nature and of truth."
you permit
Eat
will
few
plain quefrions
:
Agreed.
man
a plain
to alk a
—V/as Mr. Burke un-
der the like imprefilon of paffion, Jufpend-
when he com-
ing the operation of reafon,
pofed
all his political
fure intervene
brlnffino;
*'
eloquent
truth
*.'
down
No
?
"
of an ardent and
language of
the
to
Did he never
?
lei-
opportunity occur of
the tone
mind'*
Did no
worhs ?
ceafe to
" *
prefer
a dead carcafe to his living children
Are
political
clofet,
tried
:*'
pamphlets, the works of the
the fruits of literary leifure, to be
by the fame criricifm with the more
animated exertions of eloquence
Senate
How
?
happens
it,
in
the
that thefe fen-
timents arc ufiiform, until Mr. Burke be-
comes
at
once the advocate of a defpotifm,
which he
liiD:!felf
" common enemies
** mankind ?
Surely
it
had defcribed
to
the
"
freedom
becomes Mr. Burke,
the
of
urging
luch an apology for himfelf, to judge of
others as he wifhed himfelf to be judged.
* Appeal, p. 32.
lie
">
(
)
He would
not have us believe, that the
pomps and
.vanities
of holy church alone
engrofs his zeal, forgetful of
If a
precepts.
its
of gentlemen thought that Mr.
fet
Paine, by his mafterly hiftory of the French
Revolution, had efFedually confuted .Mr.
Burke's calumnies on. the National Afl'embly
;
if
they thought the fame author had
fuccefsfully reprobated doclrines inconfif-
tent with the exigence of freedom
recommended the
perufal of his
if
they
book
as a
;
flrong antidote to the ftrong poifon of Mr.
Burke
does
;
it
follow that the republican
natural to an American,
fyftem,
commended
dom ? But
model of
as the
whom
thofe
re-
Britifh free-
?*Ir.
who
duces, the gentlemen
was
Burke
tra-
convened the
meeting on the 14th of July, had no connevSlion
recommendation of this
fentiments do not
ihges
who
with the fociety
It
concur
happened
to
That
trcatifc.
witli
by Mr. Burke,
felc6led
know.
publifhcd the
me
I
their
the pafpofitively
to be afkcd the
queflion, whether an eminent printer might
•
fafely
publifh
thought,
Mr. Painc's pamphlet
ii fafely
prrfc Slit Ion, he
mt^xnl
might
;
'u:'ithout
for, after
?
I
dread of a
Mr, Bu ike's
libel
112
(
libel
)
on the Government and whole Peopk
of France, no
pu'olic
would crimi-
officer
nate an aniwcr without becoming a party
in the difpute.
many
At the fame time
I
marked
paflages (for the moft part thofe fe-
leOed by Mr. Burke)
as unfit for publica-
The
tion in this
kingdom.
to correct
the printer refufed to publifh
;
author refufed
*
and the publication paffed into other hands.
This anecdote was known
men who
requefted
me
to thofe o;entle-
to take the chair,
urging as a reafon, (the fingle reafon that
could be given for luch kledion), that
my
principles of Government were in the hands
of the public, and could not be mifundcr**
flood.
With
equal infelicity of fcle£lion does
Mr. Burke endeavcrur
as
to vindicate himfclf^
he attempts to criminate others.
Dr. Sacheverers
tlonally
meant
trial
the
Whigs unquef-
to vindicate their
ciples of rclirtance to unjufl
own
prin-
government:
but, in a criminal acccufation^ this
with great difadvantage.
In
was done
The Do6lor was
defended by able Counfel, profciTed Tories,
who
availed
I
thcmfelves of
the
ftrong.
ground
;
grourul
his fituatloii
yvhicli
.
I'he JvTanagers for
O-llgrded.
mons were compelled
the laws condemned
.
they were totally
Ciifes
niid
;
as
that while
generally
rcfiflnncc,
to the excepted
filent as
to
crime on the individual, thdt he
\m
The
the lazv.
a
iiiL-h
to.
Ilomiiies,
The Manaa,'ers,
flate, in
while
not iv'tjer
moreover,
the
mod
explicit terms,
employed
accufed
the
were
therefore,
the
language of fubm'ijpori, he was ner-
llroigejl
ieOly innpceiit
ject
was
clercryman mi^ht reo'ard as the
:.iij?Tna.:;e.
that
nrge as a
CI his fermons, held a yet ilrouger
:::o'J.c.ls
driven
Com-
the
to admit,
was impoflible
it
a criminal
;
but that the manifeft ob-
of the f'ermon was to difcredit the PvC-
volutlon, an impliedly excepted cafe ot refifaiKc, proceeding
hahle nccejjiiy^
that no
and
thereby to
built
on that
-'vhich
upon fuch
man
difcredit
plain
and pal-
could millak'c
the
jiecefary reffance.
;
Icttl'-ment
The
topics
fnch a cafe required are evident
yet will any
-neccffary
to
man
infer
fuch a
from the language
caufe, tJiat
the
Whigs
ailcnted to the degree of civil obedience taught
by the Homiiie?;, dually
fettled uniler the
-ve of a Sovereign, vv'ho repeatedly
Q
-
impnfoned
^^4
(
)
Members of Parliament
:^ned
ing to debate her prerogatives
?
for prefunri-
and avowed
the motives of that imprifonment in her
Speeches from the
ftitute
Burke
Throne
:
for Sacheverel, adapt the ac-
cufatioii to the adm.itted evils
how
and try
laid,
'*
Mr.
*'
he will cfcape.
of our days,
It
might be
intention to difcredit
Burke'^s
the principles of a free
" more
Let ns fub-
Government
are
evident than the defigns of Sache-
'^
verel himfelf ; that he has not only de-
*'
nied the right of the people to choofe
'•
their Governors, as exercifed at the
*'
volution, with a full
" King William was
knowledge that
chofcn for life,
and the
ek^edm
*'
anceflors of his prefent Majefly
*'
preference to thofe prior in defcent
"
that he has
**
courage
"
aflairs
*"'
* *
done
this
Re-
with a view
;
but
to Jff-
of the people in the
of Government, being himfelf
all interpofiion
perfedlly fatisfied, that the dijtempers of
Vdrliamcnt were the
d'ljlempers
of
his
own
and the remedy for parliamentary
*'
time
"
dlforders ca?i rieirr be compleaied in Parll-
'*
anient
;
—
tiay, fcarcely
begin therel'^
Read
the deliberate writings of the accufcd, and
pronounce the
verdidl^
Mf.
(
Mr. Burke
.authorities to
aiilent
from
is
115
)
not more fortunate in
thrs
Who
can
which he
refers.
his eulogy
on the Prehdent
genius not
Thiiik of a
Montefquieu ? *'
" born in every country, or tvery time a
penetrating
*' man eifted by nature with a
^-
;
prepared
aquilhieeye; with a judgment
with
^' by the moil: extendve erudition ;
" an Herculean robuftncfs of mind, and
a
^' nerves not to be broken with labour
in
-' man who could fpend twenty years
-'
;
*'
Think
one purfuit.
of a
man
like the
(who had
univerfal patriarch in Milton,
him, in prophetic
^' drawn up before
- vihom the whole fcries of generations
loins), a
^'
to ifl'ue from his
-
who were
" man capable
*'
*'
after
of placing in review,
from the Eaft,
having brought together,
South,
Weft, the North, and the
the
tlie rudeft barbafrom the coarfenefs of
" rifm to the moft refined and fubtle civi- lization, all the fchemes of Government
<'
''
among manwhieh had ever prevailed
-
kind, weighing,
^'
and comparing them
meafuring,
* Appeal,
^2
all,
collating,
joining fad
p. II5-
"'
with
ii6
(
)
'^^
with theory, and calling into council,
*'
upon'
"
tilings, ail
*'
fatigued the undcrflandino-s of Drofound
*'
reafuners in
"
"
"
"
"
this
all
ail
times
Let us then con-
!
were
ratory fleps to qualify a
io
with no domeilic
many
prepa-
man, and luch
man, linctured with no
dice,
of
which have
the fpeculations
fider, that all theie
a
alTemblage
infinite
national prcju-
affeclion,
ad-
tt.»
mire, and hold out to the admiration of
" mankind, the Confiitution of Iingland
" and Ihali we Englifhmen revoke to luch
I
Let Montefquicu be
No.
judge, and Burke the patriot be the witneir.
*'a
fuitr"
to frate the fads.
fion
is
The
his
with
me
then affirm the deci-
in every litigated point.
reader will be fo good as to recall to
memory,
fcrlbed
I
thofe
pafTages
from the writings of Mr. Burke.
Let him even qualify and
the
reftrain
mod temporate conflrnclion
collc<5t
the
have tran-
I
from
Air.
Burke
Government of
;
them by
and
tlicn
the aSlual flate
this country.
On
of
the
laws whicii conH-itute the freedom of the
individual
fubje6l:,
Montcfquicu
we
are
diilinguifhes
agreed
between
;
for
the
freedom
"
(
\
frccvlom of the confllt'jtinn at^d
of the lubjcift
dotii
"
frce^ n:id not xhv
freedom of the
iition
iubjccl-,
accordir.g
it
may arife " from morals, col
" or received examples, and civil
" mny favour It :*' but " on the goo..
writer,
,
"'
of criminal laws the liberty of the iubj^'i
"
principally depends t-'*
when
of
this i^e-iv,
the jightand duty of juries,
libels, fhali
be eftabiiflied,
controveily.
1:10
On
juflice
is
among
The
we
i:
can have
admiiaflration 'of
the ibund parts of our
Conflitution.
In the beautiful I review of the Englilh
Confiitution, to which Mr. Burke alludes,
Montefquieu exprefsly declares, "
j^// the
"-
inhabit anis
*'
to
•'
of a reprefentativc, except fiich as ar;
*-'-
*'
fo
of the fever al tilfri^s ou^ht
have a right of voting
mean a
candit'ion as to be
no will of their
we
require
?
own.''''
b. II.
the eledlioii
':h.
deemed to have
What more
do
Or vv^Lat docs Mr. Burke with
* Spirit of Laws, b. 12.
+ Ibid.
at
ch. i.
t B. 12.
ch.
,2-
ch. 6
peculiar
"8
{
peculiar ardor
reiifl
)
Montell|uieu thinks
?
the liberty of the Conftitution depends on
the fundamental laws, wiiich diilribute the
Icgiflativc
*'
and executive powers.
When
*'
the legiflative and executive powers are
*'
united in
*'
lame body of Magiftrates, there can be
*•
no
*'
arife,
that the
*'
may
enact
them
in a tyrannical
"
liberty
fame pcrfon, or
tlie
;
the
in
becaufe apprehenlions
may
fame Monarch or Senate
tyrannical laws
to execute
Again
manner."
*.
no Monarch, and the
*'
But
'*
executive power was committed to a
**
certain
" the
if there w^ere
number of
perjons felecied
body, there would be aa
legiflative
becaule the fame pcrfons
*'
end of liberty
*'
ivoiild actualI
*'
moreover ahjvays be able
*'
in both'"'
J
in a
from
;
fome times have, a fid would
to
have, a JJjare
Tiie Icgiilative power vcftcd
correal reprefentation of the people,
the executive power in an hereditary
Mo-
narch, with a complete feparation of the
gijlative
and
executive powers,
of the French Conftitution
;
form the
while
land the choice of the Sovereign
hi fact,
to the leaders
tions in Parliament;
is
in
le-
bafis
Eng-
limited,
of contending fac-
and our monumental
debt
"9
(
ilcbt
altefls
)
fame
the folly of uniting hi the
pcrfons the refponfible charadlcr of M'inifters,
and
the effective
power of
fays Montefquieu,
**
the legiflation
have
a (hare
" power of
**
*'
" Were
:
If,"
the Prince were to
by the
would be
refolving, liberty
Again
loft/'
" power
*'
in
"
control.
*'
the executive
the railing of public
to ordain
money, other wife than by giving its
confent, liberty would be at an end,
would become
*'
becaufe
"
the mofT important point of legiflation.'*
it
legi dative in
Does not the whole efedlhe power of
ing public
tlie
Crown
money
refide in the Miniftcrs
of
What edidls of taxation have
?
our Parliaments refuied to regifter
name
did they even
a
Committee
the public accounts, that the
prepared by the Minifter
Parliament
prefent
raif-
annum
8oo,oool. per
?
?
or
when
to infpe(£t
lift
not
u*as
Have not the
voted
more
than
additional taxes, al-
moft without the compliment of
a debate
I
Yet when the Spanish Convention was concluded,
when
the fubje^l had pafied into
hiftory, did they not refule to inveftigate
how
far the
expenditure of four millions
was neceflary
I
?
Montefquieu
fortells
the
ruin
i:^o
(
)
" As
ruin of our fieedorn.
*'
muil have aa end
''
fpeaking cf will lofe
Carthage^ periihcd
-^
'^
'
'-^
r Kow
iiear that ca-
Mr. Burke.,
'ft
let the
With
atteftl
fhall the diibiples of
writings
thefe warn-
Montefquieu neg-
to reclaim their rights
That
?
great
beheld, even in his time, the rapid ad-
:;..iii
of
'^-ance
corruption,
fatal
tliis
*' It
added,
*'
when
more corrutted
i'lfrs,
>',
and
the leg'ijlative power Jh all he
than- the executive
f
will
Sparta,
// nv'dl perijij
?
are
liberty, it
its
lamitous period approaches,
,
things
flatewe
the
;
Have not Rome,
perifn..
'
human
aii
is
when he
not ray hufmefs to inquire
whether the Engliih
cotually enjoy this
" liberty or not it is iufHcient for my
" purpofe that // h ejlablified by their laws^
'*
and i inquire no farther." He thenfaw
:
.
our pratlice widely diverging from the theory
of our Conflituticn,
"
"
"
We
:
covered, that * the
tilings
*'
forms of a free
the
much- agitated
French
of Montefquieu
*
^
dif-
and
were
not altogether incompatlhkr
icvoh. of the
rlry
now
ends of cm arbitrary GGver7iment,
trie
In
have
quefiion on the
the'autho-
foldiery,
is
on the
fide
Caufj of prefcnr DifcontEnts,
of free-
p. I2.
dom.
I^'
(
clolr..
prevent * the executive power
To
''
)
rcquifite
**
from being able
^'
tliat
**
truRed, fhouhl cbiififtof the people, and
*'
have the Jaine
ing the fame
means of
as the
fpirlt in
reft
of the
people
Camp, barracks, or
**
iuffcred."
fame
" the
the
and no fcparatc
fortrefs,
fhould be
this participation
;
of
and the defpctifm of France
to
infult
and opprefs the
French nation— to embroil by
the
and
our Revolution of 1688 had
fp'irlt
had continued
all
en-
preferv-
common with
;
Without
been defeated
i^''
the armies, that
*'
the
is
it
as the people
f'p'irh
foldicrs fhoiild live in
"
it is
with which
the armies,
he recommends,
''
to opprefs,
its
intrigues
kingdoms of Europe.
Thofe who do not know Mr. Burke
might fufpcct that his beautiful eulogy on
the Poiifh Revolution was introduced for
the gratification of one remark.
<'
genius of this flidion
is
eafily difcerned,
" by obferving with what
**
"
«t
a
dittercnt eye
they have viewed the late foreign Revolutions.
— that
Two
Spirit of
have pafled before them
of France and that of Poland."
Mr. Burke knew
'^
" f The
Laws,
that thio fadion had re-
b. 11.
ch. 6.
R
t Appeal, p. 102.
cognized
122
(
cognized
in the
change from an ele^he
monarchy the foundations
to an heredilary
laid
)
of pubhc order
but could
;
efcape the fagacity of
it
Mr. Burke,
pofiibly
that Po-
land was a country jufl emerging, by this
Revolution, from the barbarifm of feudal
anarchy
?
a
country
in
which the
firft
rights
of humanity had not been even acknowledged
Where
!
the cultivators of the
pafled as part of the eftate
Where
!
years only had elapfed, fmce the
a peafant
by
by the laws
!
a
foil
few
murder of
Lord had been condemned
And does Mr. Burke feiioufly
his
propofe fueh a people an example to the
enlightened
Paris
?
London and of
of
citizens
As well might we
feek the inftl-
2:overnment in the wilds of
tutes of o
rica,
or learn
from
its
Ame-
naked favagcs the
philofophy of laws.
Situated as Poland
is
the midft of
in
Europe, this deicriptiou does not exclude
knowlcdsre, and
talents,
and cultivated
from many of the
Members of
Diet.
its
thcfe appears
reigning
learnirirr,
that
King,
I
difl:ingui(hed
Pre-eminent among
exalted
whom
character the
Mr. Burke, with
equal
1^3
(
equal truth ami
)
defcrlbcs
felicity,
" from
heroic love of his country, exerting
*'
nil
*'
himfclf with
*'
the managen:ient, the intrigue, in favour
<*
of a family of Grangers, with which
**
ambitious
men
*'
difement
of
"
Prince, worthy to begin with fplcndor,
*«
or to clofe with glory a race of Patriots
'*
and of Kings
*'
A
«'
Which men
But
name which
is
the
r.U
the dexterity,
labour for
their
the nggran-
" Happy
own."
and to leave
;
every
to telj,
wind
to
heaven would bear,
and angels joy
Mr. Burke
this patriot
toil,
to hear."
ignorant,
really
King maintains
that
a conftant coi-
refpondence with Paris, reprefents himfelf
as a fellow labourer in the
fame caufe with
the French patriots, and laments that his
own
country
tutions
I
"
am
is
not ripe to receive
which they have
eftabUflied
not one of thofe "
who
infti-
?
juftify the
frequent interruptions which
at lengt^l
wholly difabled Mr. Burke from pro" ceeding ;'* but to tell us what he would
*'
have proved, and to lament the
R 2
inter rup-
tion,
>n
(
tlon,
)
perfeflly puerile, the language
is
of
mind finking under the w^alvnefs
Mr. Burke has been in the
caufe.
a peevifh
of hfs
conftant habit
Let him print
of printing his
this
fpeeches..
The
intended fpeech.
friends of trutii will rejoice to learn their
errors even
from him, and will forget the
calumnies
with which
Let liim teach
loaded.
human
origin of
from
rived
been
have
they
what can be the
us,
rights, if they be not de?
nature.
how Government
Let him
inflrud: us,
can be better directed to
prom.ote the happinefs of mankind, than by
an equal protecftion of thefe rlglus in every
member of
the
community
;
how
or
to dil-
criminate between the moft lawlefs defpotifm,
and the moft legitimate
otherwife than by the
tions
utility
facrifice
its infl:itu-
We
adapted to this end.
fcious of
of
legiflation,
no crime when we
of Gothic prejudices,
con-
are
rejoice in the
at
the (hrine
of reafon, by a great and enlightened nation
;
and
we wait
with anxious expectation
the refult of this grand experiment of
entific
legiflation.
We
cannot
lieve, that all the theories,
phy has
eafily
which
eftabllflicd, arefalfe, or the
fci-
be-
philofo-
convictions
«25
(
tioas of our
own
)
uudcribiidings dclufivc.
We
fuiped that thole
fioii,
cannot dcmonilratc by argument; and
who
with paf-
rail
we
difcovcr, in the interefted clamours
the
known enemies of mankind,
homage
luntary
In our
many
own
to tlie caufe
ot"
ot'
an invo-
frccdi:>m.
country wc; arc aware,
th.at
partial oppreflions, inconhilcnt
with
the rights derived
from the Great
to all
Author of Nature, demand correction
we hope fome
;
and
from the meritorious
benefit
labours of individuals to enlighten on thefc
Yet we think
fubje(5ls the
public mind.
that the
and moft important
to
firfl
by which the public
obtain an organ,
mind may fpeak
ourfelves that,
in Icgiflation.
this
away by
the age.
eledtcd
flatter
and tcm])erateh''
the increaiing knowledge of
An Houfe
of
Commons
fairly
by the great body of the people,
whole Members
the
We
obtained, every other
abufe will be gradually
f3one
obje(ft is
common
fhall frequently return
to
mafs, and removed from the
temptation of converting a public truft to
private benefit,
will
is
that organ of the public
which the acknowledged
principles
of
'-6
(
)
of our Government prefcribe, and which
none can oppofe but thofe who have been
accuftomed
to feck,
under the fpeclous pre-
text of public duty, the fordid gratification
Thefe opnumerous and mighty a firm,
of private avarice or ambition.
ponents are
—
determined band,
who
can alone be fub-
dued by an equally firm and equally deter-
mined union of
all
the friends of a free
government, deriving
its
energy from the
public will, and dire^led to the
happinefs of a whole people.
THE END.
commou
Jy^^f^
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