Front Page Titles (by Subject) Number XII.: Warning to Britons, upon the present Rebellion supported by France. - The Independent Whig, vol. 4 (1747)
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Number XII.: Warning to Britons, upon the present Rebellion supported by France. - Thomas Gordon, The Independent Whig, vol. 4 (1747) 
The Independent Whig. Being a Collection of Papers All written, some of them published During the Late Rebellion (London: J. Peele, 1747). Vol. 4.
Part of: The Independent Whig, 4 vols.
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Warning to Britons, upon the present Rebellion supported by France.
A french Invasion implies a French Conquest; Conquest implies Servitude. He must be fit for Bedlam who dreams that France can mean any thing but our Desolation and Ruin by endeavouring to force a King upon us, or that they even mean that he shall be King, whatever Mock-Royalty they nominally give him. It is their own Interest and Dominion only that they seek, to master and crush us for beating and disappointing them: They know that they can never flourish and domineer till they have impoverished and oppressed us: And none but an absolute Creature of theirs, one pliable into every Form and Impression, obsequious to their Dictates, and supple to their Will, can serve them by domineering over Us.
If they found such Complaisance from King Charles II. without any Claim to the Merit of restoring him: If that Prince shewed so little Gratitude to the English Nation, for their Zeal and Generosity in recalling him, as to sacrifice, as he did during his whole Reign, so loyal a People to the unjust Views and pernicious Ambition of France, and but seemed a Protestant the better to betray his Protestant Subjects. If King James II. blindly and ungratefully followed the same Course, and whilst he had the aukward Ambition of aiming at absolute Power here, yet was meanly subservient to the Dictates and Grandeur of France, still more meanly owning the Sovereignty of the Pope; though neither France nor the Pope had any Share in giving him his Crown. If both these Princes, only for the sake of makeing their weak and depraved Will a Law to their good Protestant Subjects, truckled to the Will and Craft of France and Rome, what is to be expected from one who has no Support but theirs, no Principles but those of Popery and Tyranny; or, if he had other and better Principles, dares not maintain them, though he may be allowed to profess them, and practise Guile the better to serve the Purposes of these his Protectors, and his own Purposes?
A Ruler imposed upon a Country may claim Right, but will rule by Force where his Right is not owned. They who help him to rule will rule for him, and be his Masters, though he bear the Name. Neither he nor they will trust a People whom they have once forced. He will not be suffered to trust them if he would. For then he ceases to be independent of those who imposed him. Whoever call in Question his Right, will pay for their Sauciness with their Lives. The Laws that oppose it will be Treason: The Acts of Violence that support it will be called Laws, and the Sword will direct, as well as execute, the Process. Hungry Harpies will be craving after Prey; Vengeance will be hunting for Victims; to gorge both Sorts, the Rich and the Guiltless must perish. Whereever there is Property there will be Guilt: All Men will be exposed to suffer, the Best most: Suffering will be followed with Complaint, Complaints with Punishment. Wise Men will excite Jealousy: Great Men will be the Objects of Fear: And as Discontents will be constantly and plentifully furnished; fresh Terrors to extinguish them will continually be increased, and continually be renewing such Diseontents.
Here is a dreadful Series and Intercourse of Enmity, where one Side only is armed, and void of Mercy; as the other is of Help and Hope. Title, Quality, Fortune, will be obnoxious and marked; every Virtue will become a Snare, and whatever furnished out the Ease and Ornament of Life, will become a Call for taking Life away. The Industry of Years, the Acquisition of Ages, the Fruits of a Thousand Cares, will be swept away in a Moment, all to reward the guilty Authors of such horrible Iniquity and Combustion. Such will be the Penalty exacted for the Guilt of Fortune and Merit; such the Price imposed upon public Ruin; a Price always paying, but never finally paid till All is paid. The Course of Law and even of Nature will be inverted, Nobility demeaned; Meanness exalted; Worth punished; Guilt rewarded: Whatever was once Law will be Treason; whatever was once Treason will be Law.
Thus tragical and perishing must be the State of England. What must be the State Abroad, but that all Europe must follow the general Servitude begun here; and thus deprived of its chief Protection and Resource, sorrowfully bear the Yoke of a restless Nation, eager to put Chains on all others, though they bear the heaviest themselves?
They had never accomplished the grand Design, without the Help of the two Royal Brothers, the English Monarchs above-mentioned. For, though France made them not, she moulded and managed them. Far from attending to the Call of National Interest and Honour, and asserting the Glory of the English Diadem, by preserving the Balance, and checking the Encroachments of France; the Two Royal Brothers encouraged all her Encroachments upon all her Neighbours, upon the Empire, upon Spain, and upon the Dutch, our more intimate Neighbours and Fellow-Protestants; nay, assisted to exterminate the whole Dutch Nation, in order to make England a more contiguous Member of the French Monarchy, to which the English Monarchs were become mean Pensioners and Auxiliaries, with the preposterous Pride of aiming themselves at absolute Power over free Subjects, who were too proud to be Slaves, especially second-hand Slaves to France.
The Monarchs of England descended to be the unnatural Instrument of exalting France, and were the Authors of all the Expence, answerable for all the dreadful Wars in Europe ever since. A Frown from a King of Great Britain would have made the Grand Monarch a very harmless Neighbour. Would Edward III. would Henry V. nay, would Oliver Cromwell, in King Charles’s Place, have suffered him to spoil his weakest Neighbours, or once to have displayed the Flower-de-luce upon the Rhine or Moselle? Oliver kept him in constant Awe; though, for his own Ends, such was the unhappy Situation of an Usurper, he allowed him too much Line. The Two Brothers lacquied to him as their Superior, took his Hire, and, as it were, wore his Livery, and encouraged him in all his perfidious, in all his barbarous Invasions.
It was this, this infamous Acquiescence and Venality from hence, that made him the Terror, the Oppressor of Europe, and raised his Vanity, and his Power with it, so high, that it required a William III. and a Duke of Marlborough to tame him and take him down. That these two great Genius’s in State and War did not thoroughly humble him, was owing to the devilish Spirit of Party, which generally destroys a Country by a Pretence of saving it.
FRANCE knows that in order to enslave Europe she must begin with Great Britain. Great Britain ought to know, all wise Men in it do know, that England has nothing but Chains and Misery to hope from the Policy and Friendship of France. This is a dreadful Prospect to Britons and Protestants, and the only one, if she succeed. Ought it not to be the first and last Resolution of Englishmen and Protestants, that she shall not? What Indignation must they not naturally feel against the perfidious, the insolent, and sanguinary Efforts of France, and against all who impiously take Part with France? Her Partizans here, if there be any such, must be the most unnatural of all Parricides: A glorious Spirit appears amongst all Classes of Men, in spite of all the late Pains taken, all the traiterous Misrepresentations used to prevent it, to damp it, and to turn the Resentment of Englishmen upon the Guardians of England, without sparing the Highest.
The last Revolution was a manifest Deliverance from Popery and Tyranny. This would be as manifest a Delivery into both. King James deposed himself: He would abolish Parliaments, he would establish Popery; his Will was to be a Law to his Subjects; their Consciences must submit to his Bigotry. These were Grievances indeed, not made, nor to be aggravated, but felt. No wonder he at once lost Lords and Commons, Army, Clergy and People. He had incited and even warranted them to desert him, and effectually warned them never to trust him more, whom no Oaths nor Laws could bind, and who had set up Superstition against the Gospel, Jesuitism against the English Hierarchy, Acts of State framed by his Popish Wife, and his Popish Priests (all carefully tutor’d by France) against Acts of Parliament.
What are the Grievances at present? War and Taxes, and Foreign Subsidies: Heavy Evils, without doubt. But, from what Causes, and when did they begin? Were they not all derived from the same Root, from the same Quarter and devilish Policy, from whence we are just now threatened with Relief? They all came from France, and from the pernicious Subserviency of our former Princes to France. All that was sacred and valuable to England was then sacrificed to France; English Honour, the Religion, the Trade of England, with a Balance of Millions yearly in favour of France. These are, most probably, the intended Blessings under which we are to be reinstated by the Revolution now threatened.
Religion too often follows Power, or is changed and subverted by Power. France, by extending her Sway, will extend Popery; and if by planting a French Deputy upon the English Throne, she can master this great Source and Asylum of Protestantism, Religion will too naturally end, where there is an End of Liberty.
What can be a more alarming Call, what a more interesting Quarrel? It is literally pro Aris & Focis, for whatever concerns God or Conscience, whatever concerns our Liberties and Fortunes, to keep them or to lose them; nay, to keep them or lose them for ever, is the Dispute. Our Enemies will be as eager to keep Footing, as to gain it. If present Defence and Spirit be wanting, future Remedies will probably be ineffectual.
What can be a more sensible Insult, or higher Provocation, than that a Nation, whom we have always beaten, and are now beating, should dare to face our Coasts, and audaciously threaten to conquer us, and even to rule us by a Deputy? Indeed, if they carry this Point, they carry all. If they fail in this, they fail in all. The Decision is short and comprehensible on both Sides. If she succeed, we are undone: If she miscarry, she is finally baffled and vanquished.