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Neil L. York, The Crisis: A British Defense of American Rights, 1775–1776 [2016]

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Neil L. York, The Crisis: A British Defense of American Rights, 1775–1776. Edited and with an Introduction by Neil L. York (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2016).

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About this Title:

The Crisis was a London weekly published between January 1775 and October 1776. It was the longest-running weekly pamphlet series printed in the British Atlantic world during those years, and it used unusually bold, pithy language. Neither the longevity of the effort nor the colorful language employed would be reason enough to collect and print all ninety-two issues under one cover in a modern edition. The Crisis lays claim to our attention because of its place in the rise of freedom of the press, its self-conscious attempt to create a transatlantic community of protest, and its targeting of the king as the source of political problems—but without attacking the institution of monarchy itself.

The Crisis was condemned informally by leaders in the British government, and then formally in court, as a dangerous example of seditious libel. Copies of it were publicly burned, and yet publication continued uninterrupted. The men behind The Crisis were determined to interest the British public in American affairs and were no doubt pleased when various issues were reprinted in the colonies. They played on shared beliefs and shared fears: beliefs in the existence of fundamental rights, rights beyond the reach of any government, and the fear that loss of those rights in Britain’s American colonies could lead to their loss in Britain itself. They denounced George III in language at once harsh and florid, and did so many months before Thomas Paine’s Common Sense. Even so, The Crisis did not call on Britons to overthrow monarchy with a republic, and its ardor for the Patriot cause cooled once Revolutionary Americans declared their independence. It stands as proof that strident rhetoric does not necessarily lead to radical political action. Its history also shows that ideas, once unleashed, take on a life of their own.

We have prepared a more detailed ToC for York’s The Crisis which includes the date, the author’s name, and the topic:

  1. NUMBER I January 20, 1775 - “To the People of England and America”
  2. NUMBER II January 28, 1775 - “A Bloody Court, A Bloody Ministry, And A Bloody Parliament” and a poem “These mighty Crimes will sure ere long provoke, The Arm of Britain to some noble Stroke.”
  3. NUMBER III February 4, 1775 - “To the KING: TO follow you regularly through every Step of a fourteen Years SHAMEFUL and INGLORIOUS Reign.”
  4. NUMBER IV February 11, 1775 - “Ye CONSPIRATORS against the LIBERTIES of Mankind” and “TO THE Officers, Soldiers, and Seamen”.
  5. NUMBER V February 18, 1775 - “Resistance to Tyrants and the Instruments of Tyranny is Justifiable, and Warranted, by all the Laws of God and Man”
  6. NUMBER VI February 25, 1775 - “To the Right Honourable LORD NORTH, First Lord of the Treasury” and “A Parody, for your Lordship’s Perusal”.
  7. NUMBER VII March 4, 1775 - Junius, “To the Right Honourable LORD APSLEY, Lord Chancellor of England”
  8. NUMBER VIII March 11, 1775 - “To the Lords Suffolk, Pomfret, Radnor, Apsley, and Sandwich”.
  9. NUMBER IX March 18, 1775 - “The worst of all Tyranny is that established by Law. To the KING”.
  10. NUMBER X March 25, 1775 - Junius, “LETTER II.: To the Right Honourable LORD APSLEY, Lord Chancellor of England”.
  11. NUMBER XI April 1, 1775 - “THIS Country is now reduced to a Situation really Degrading and Deplorable”.
  12. NUMBER XII April 8, 1775 - “The prophecy of Ruin, A POEM.”
  13. NUMBER XIII April 15, 1775 - Casca, “With Rage from Hell the Tyrant’s Heart may glow, But He’s no Briton who can strike the Blow,” “The Address, Remonstrance, and Petition of the CITY of LONDON,” and “The KING’s ANSWER, Which would do Honour to any BUTCHER, MONSTER, or TYRANT on Earth.”
  14. NUMBER XIV April 22, 1775 - “The present Necessary DEFENSIVE War on the Part of America.”
  15. NUMBER XV April 29, 1775 - Casca, “A constant Scourge—still I’ll renew the Charge, And lash the Tyrant as his Crimes enlarge.”
  16. NUMBER XVI May 6, 1775 - Casca, “To SUPPLICATION turn a Princely ear; Nor MURDER Subjects you have SWORN to HEAR.”
  17. NUMBER XVII May 13, 1775 - “Casca’s Epistle to LORD MANSFIELD” (a poem).
  18. NUMBER XVIII May 20, 1775 - “Casca’s Epistle to LORD NORTH” (a poem): “ If sad Britannia wails, in deep Distress, Her Taxes greater and her Freedom less.”
  19. NUMBER XIX May 27, 1775 - “ADMINISTRATION has now “let slip the Dogs of War.”
  20. NUMBER XX June 3, 1775 - “To the KING: LIKE that fell Monster, and infernal TYRANT Charles the First” and a poem “He that can levy WAR with all Mankind, Can cut his Subjects Throats, and fell his Friend”.
  21. NUMBER XXI June 10, 1775 - Casca, “To Lord NORTH” and “Remarks on his Majesty’s last most Gracious (I had like to have said infamous) Speech.”
  22. NUMBER XXII June 17, 1775 - “BLOOD calls for BLOOD. To the People of England.”
  23. NUMBER XXIII June 24, 1775 - Casca, “To his TYRANNIC MAJESTY.—the DEVIL” and “To the Lords BUTE and MANSFIELD.”
  24. NUMBER XXIV July 1, 1775 - Casca, “A Disease of a venal Majority in the great Council of the Nation.”
  25. NUMBER XXV July 8, 1775 - Casca, “Be wise, ye Kings, nor to mere Power trust.”
  26. NUMBER XXVI July 15, 1775 - Casca, “ADMINISTRATION dare not, as yet (or else they would) deny the Subjects Right of PETITIONING the King.”
  27. NUMBER XXVII July 22, 1775 - Cato, “To the KING.” A poem: “REFORM thy Conduct, Monarch, or attend, The Doom denounc’d, by Virtu’s constant Friend.”
  28. NUMBER XXVIII July 29, 1775 - By his Excellency Thomas Shaw, PROTECTOR and DEFENDER of MAGNA CHARTA, and the BILL of RIGHTS. A PROCLAMATION” and “God Save AMERICA.”
  29. NUMBER XXIX August 5, 1775 - “To the KING.” A poem: “ONCE more to stay the Fury of the Sword, Cato addresses Britain’s misled Lord”.
  30. A CRISIS EXTRAORDINARY. August 9, 1775 - Casca, “GENERAL GAGE’S Proclamation lies before me.”
  31. NUMBER XXX August 12, 1775 - “To the KING. From Philip Thicknesse, Esq.”
  32. NUMBER XXXI August 19, 1775 - “To the KING: For Seas of BLOOD which your mad Fury shed, God soon will hurl his Veng’ance on your Head.”
  33. NUMBER XXXII August 26, 1775 - Casca, “A ROUGH SKETCH For the ROYAL ACADEMY.” A poem: “SHUT not the Door, good Hertford, I’am but One, A single Sufferer can’t alarm the THRONE.”
  34. NUMBER XXXIII September 2, 1775 - Casca, ”MY two last Papers, described the morbid State of the Ministerial Majority of the great Council.”
  35. NUMBER XXXIV September 9, 1775 - Casca, “To Lord BUTE: I Shall address your Lordship with as little Ceremony as you have met with Occasionally.”
  36. NUMBER XXXV September 16, 1775 - Casca, “To the AUTHORS of the CRISIS: AS one of your Correspondents;” Thomas Shaw, “A FREE PRESS. To the PUBLIC;” and Detector, “HINTS for the AUTHOR of the CRISIS.”
  37. NUMBER XXXVI September 23, 1775 - Casca, “To the KING: LORD Bolingbroke has drawn a masterly Picture of a wise King in Idea.”
  38. NUMBER XXXVII September 30, 1775 - Brutus, “To the PEOPLE of ENGLAND: THE CRISIS is at length arrived when Truths are branded with the opprobrious Name of TREASON;” “Instructions from the FREEHOLDERS of the COUNTY of Middlesex, to the Right Honourable JOHN WILKES and JOHN GLYNN,” and “A Letter from the FREEHOLDERS of MIDDLESEX, to the FREEHOLDERS of GREAT BRITAIN.”
  39. NUMBER XXXVIII October 7, 1775 - Casca, “SINCE every Truth is now considered, by the King’s Friends, as a Libel upon Government.”
  40. NUMBER XXXIX October 14, 1775 - Casca, “An Ideal SCETCH of a FOOLISH KING. Continued from Number XXXVI. To the KING.”
  41. NUMBER XL October 21, 1775 - Casca, “An Ideal SCETCH of a FOOLISH KING finished. Continued from the last Number.”
  42. NUMBER XLI October 28, 1775 - “To the PEOPLE OF ENGLAND. Men and Britons, Friends and Countrymen.”
  43. NUMBER XLII November 4, 1775 - Casca, “* Whilst servile Wesley’s Pen with Johnson’s vyes, Enforcing all his Sophistry and Lyes.”
  44. NUMBER XLIII November 11, 1775 - “Of meaner Crimes we scorn to mention more, But of a M————R CROWN’D, besmeared with GORE.” And “To the PUBLIC. For COUGHS, COLDS, HOARSENESSES, &c. The PECTORAL DECOCTION, an infallible Remedy.”
  45. NUMBER XLIV November 18, 1775 - Allen’s Ghost, “I Have just observed how one of the weakest and wickedest men in England was lately escorted.”
  46. NUMBER XLV November 25, 1775 - “To the Earl of DARTMOUTH, Late Secretary of State for the Colonies.”
  47. NUMBER XLVI December 2, 1775 - “TO THE KING: Go on vile Prince by lawless strides, and try How soon your Crown will fade, your Empire die.”
  48. NUMBER XLVII December 9, 1775 - Casca, “EVERY wicked ministerial stratagem, every human and inhuman mode of distruction has been tried.”
  49. NUMBER XLVIII December 16, 1775 - “When Kings are base, when Tyrants they are grown, May Britons hurl them headlong from the Throne.”
  50. NUMBER XLIX December. 23, 1775 - “When Kings the Sword of Justice first lay down They are no Kings, tho’ they possess a CROWN.”
  51. NUMBER L December 30, 1775 - Casca, “* Whether by Valour, or Deceit we tame Our hostile Children, ’tis to Bute the same.”
  52. NUMBER LIJanuary 6, 1776 - “It is an Act of PUBLIC JUSTICE not only to RESTRAIN, but to DESTROY TYRANTS.”
  53. NUMBER LII January 13, 1776 - “SCOTCH REBELS, and Traitors Triumphant.”
  54. NUMBER LIII January 20, 1776 - Casca, “To LORD MANSFIELD: YOUR Lordship’s late Speech in the House of Lords upon the Restraining Bill.”
  55. NUMBER LIV January 27, 1776 - Casca, “To LORD MANSFIELD. [Continued from our last.”
  56. NUMBER LV February 3, 1776 - “A candid Appeal to every true Lover of God, his Country, and Himself; FRIENDS and COUNTRYMEN.”
  57. NUMBER LVI February 10, 1776 - “A candid Appeal to every true Lover of God, his Country, and Himself; [Concluded from our last.]
  58. NUMBER LVII February 17, 1776 - Brutus, “To the KING.” A “Remonstrance.”
  59. NUMBER LVIII February 24, 1776 - “To the KING: This galling Truth to GEORGE let BRITONS tell, When Kings grow TYRANTS Subjects will REBEL.”
  60. NUMBER LIX March 2, 1776 - Casca, “HAD I the honour of knowing Lord Mansfield.”
  61. NUMBER LX March 9, 1776 - “Qualifications requisite for PRIME MINISTER in the present Reign; the vilest that ever disgraced the Annals of this Kingdom.” And “NOW or NEVER! BRITONS strike HOME!”
  62. NUMBER LXI March 12, 1776 - Casca, “As Johnson noddles, right or wrong’s inferr’d; He stalks the Leader of the scribbling Herd.”
  63. NUMBER LXII March 23, 1776 - Casca, “[Concluded from our last.] MR. Wesley asks,—“How has any Man consented to those Laws which were made before he was born?””
  64. NUMBER LXIII March 30, 1776 - Casca, “Th’ abuse of Greatness is, when it disjoins Remorse from Power.”
  65. NUMBER LXIV April 6, 1776 - “GARDNER’s GHOST, A prophetic Ballad found in Merlin’s Cave, Richmond;” Tiberius, “REVOLVE your annals of mankind, and say, ye historians, which is the most horrible scene you have exhibited!;” and “To English SOLDIERS.”
  66. NUMBER LXV April 13, 1776 - Casca, “To LORD CHATHAM; I Have just read a letter given to the public in one of the daily papers.”
  67. NUMBER LXVI April 20, 1776 - “TO THE KING: They that resolve their Liberty to lose, Heav’n is too just that Freedom to refuse, But lets them have the Slav’ry which they choose.”
  68. NUMBER LXVII April 27, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: THE law is the great rule in every country, at least in every free country.”
  69. NUMBER LXVIII May 4, 1776 - “TO THE KING: IT ought to be a reflection which you should often make.”
  70. NUMBER LXIX May 11, 1776 - William Stewardson, “A serious Warning to Great Britain, addressed TO THE KING.”
  71. NUMBER LXX May 18, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: BY liberty, I understand the power which every man has over his own actions,.”
  72. NUMBER LXXI May 25, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: IT is altogether impossible for one man or a small number of men.”
  73. NUMBER LXXII June 1, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: To the worst and most infamous minister that ever disgraced this Country, LORD NORTH”
  74. NUMBER LXXIII June 8, 1776 - “To the Inhabitants of this once flourishing Nation. Friends and Fellow Subjects.”
  75. NUMBER LXXIV June 15, 1776 - Marcus, “To the right honourable John Earl of Sandwich, first lord of the Admiralty, &c.—alias Twitcher” and “Extract of a letter from a gentleman at Grantham, to his friend at Lincoln.”
  76. NUMBER LXXVJune 22, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: AS there must be in all well regulated states, a variety of offices,” and “A Recept to make a LORD, occasioned by a late Promotion.”
  77. NUMBER LXXVI June 29, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: POPULAR affection, when justly obtained.”
  78. NUMBER LXXVII July 6, 1776 - “For the CRISIS: AS the present government of England, under his piratical Majesty GEORGE the THIRD.”
  79. NUMBER LXXVIII July 13, 1776 - Casca, “To Lord GEORGE GERMAINE.”
  80. NUMBER LXXIX July 20, 1776 - “Reflections on the present conspiracy of the King and Parliament of Britain against the Americans.”
  81. NUMBER LXXX July 27, 1776 - “Reflections on the present conspiracy of the King and Parliament of Britain against the Americans. Continued from our last.”
  82. NUMBER LXXXI August 3, 1776- “Reflections on the present conspiracy of the King and Parliament of Britain against the Americans. Continued from our last.”
  83. NUMBER LXXXII August 10, 1776- “Reflections on the present conspiracy of the King and Parliament of Britain against the Americans. Concluded from our last” and “Lord Camden’s Speech in the House of Lords, in 1765, on the declaratory Bill of the sovereinty of Great Britain over her Colonies.”
  84. NUMBER LXXXIII August 17, 1776 - “I Cannot help thinking it an astonishing event in the history of human affairs.”
  85. NUMBER LXXXIV August 24, 1776 - “The following is the Declaration of INDEPENDENCE of the BRAVE, FREE, and VIRTUOUS Americans, against the most dastardly, slavish, and vicious TYRANT, that ever disgraced a Nation” and “Extract of a LETTER.”
  86. NUMBER LXXXV August 30, 1776 - “From the LONDON GA ZETTE of August 24” and “REMARKS.”
  87. NUMBER LXXXVI September 8, 1776 - Robert Molesworth, “The PRINCIPLES of a REAL WHIG” (Part 1).
  88. NUMBER LXXXVII September 14, 1776 - Robert Molesworth, “The PRINCIPLES of a REAL WHIG” (Part 2).
  89. NUMBER LXXXVIII September 21, 1776 - Robert Molesworth, “The PRINCIPLES of a REAL WHIG” (Part 3); and “CIRCULAR LETTER FROM THE LONDON ASSOCIATION.”
  90. NUMBER LXXXIX September 28, 1776 - “From the Virginia Gazette, and other American papers, dated August 3d, 1776.”
  91. NUMBER XC October 6, 1776 - “An EXTRACT from the Freeholder’s Political Catechism, written by the late Earl of Bath, containing a short but judicious Summary of the Duty, as well as Rights, of every English Freeholder” (Part 1).
  92. NUMBER XCI October 12, 1776 - “An EXTRACT from the Freeholder’s Political Catechism, written by the late Earl of Bath, containing a short but judicious Summary of the Duty, as well as Rights, of every English Freeholder” (Part 2) and “An ADDRESS from the AUTHORS to the PUBLIC.”

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Table of Contents:

Edition: current; Page: [i]
the crisis
Edition: current; Page: [ii]
Edition: current; Page: [iii]
A British Defense of American Rights 1775–1776
Edited and with an Introduction by Neil L. York
Liberty Fund
Edition: current; Page: [iv]

This book is published by Liberty Fund, Inc., a foundation established to encourage study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.


The cuneiform inscription that serves as our logo and as the design motif for our endpapers is the earliest-known written appearance of the word “freedom” (amagi), or “liberty.” It is taken from a clay document written about 2300 bc in the Sumerian city-state of Lagash.

Introduction, editorial matter, and index © 2016 by Liberty Fund, Inc.

All rights reserved

Printed in the United States of America

16 17 18 19 20 21 c 05 04 03 02 01

16 17 18 19 20 21 p 05 04 03 02 01

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Names: York, Neil Longley, editor.

Title: The crisis : a British defense of American rights, 1775–1776 / edited and with an introduction by Neil L. York.

Description: Indianapolis : Liberty Fund, 2016. | Originally published: London : T.K. Shaw, 1775–1776. | Includes index.

Identifiers: LCCN 2016029374| ISBN 9780865978959 (pbk. : alk. paper) | ISBN 9781614876519 (kindle) | ISBN 9781614879213 (pdf)

Subjects: LCSH: United States—History—Revolution, 1775-1783—Causes—Sources. | United States—History—Revolution, 1775-1783—Periodicals. | United States—Politics and government—1775-1783—Periodicals. | Great Britain—Politics and government—1760-1789—Periodicals.

Classification: LCC E211 .C96 2016 | DDC 973.3/11—dc23

LC record available at

Liberty Fund, Inc.

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Indianapolis, Indiana 46250-1684

Edition: current; Page: [v]


  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Introduction xi
  • Editorial Note xxxiii
  • The Crisis
    • Number I January 20, 1775 1
    • Number II January 28, 1775 13
    • Number III February 4, 1775 23
    • Number IV February 11, 1775 31
    • Number V February 18, 1775 39
    • Number VI February 25, 1775 49
    • Number VII March 4, 1775 57
    • Number VIII March 11, 1775 67
    • Number IX March 18, 1775 75
    • Number X March 25, 1775 83
    • Number XI April 1, 1775 91
    • Number XII April 8, 1775 97
    • Number XIII April 15, 1775 113
    • Number XIV April 22, 1775 123
    • Number XV April 29, 1775 129
    • Number XVI May 6, 1775 135
    • Number XVII May 13, 1775 143
    • Number XVIII May 20, 1775 157
    • Number XIX May 27, 1775 169
    • Number XX June 3, 1775 177 Edition: current; Page: [vi]
    • Number XXI June 10, 1775 183
    • Number XXII June 17, 1775 191
    • Number XXIII June 24, 1775 197
    • Number XXIV July 1, 1775 209
    • Number XXV July 8, 1775 217
    • Number XXVI July 15, 1775 225
    • Number XXVII July 22, 1775 233
    • Number XXVIII July 29, 1775 243
    • Number XXIX August 5, 1775 251
    • A Crisis Extraordinary August 9, 1775 261
    • Number XXX August 12, 1775 273
    • Number XXXI August 19, 1775 281
    • Number XXXII August 26, 1775 289
    • Number XXXIII September 2, 1775 299
    • Number XXXIV September 9, 1775 307
    • Number XXXV September 16, 1775 319
    • Number XXXVI September 23, 1775 327
    • Number XXXVII September 30, 1775 333
    • Number XXXVIII October 7, 1775 345
    • Number XXXIX October 14, 1775 355
    • Number XL October 21, 1775 363
    • Number XLI October 28, 1775 369
    • Number XLII November 4, 1775 377
    • Number XLIII November 11, 1775 391
    • Number XLIV November 18, 1775 399
    • Number XLV November 25, 1775 409
    • Number XLVI December 2, 1775 417
    • Number XLVII December 9, 1775 425
    • Number XLVIII December 16, 1775 435
    • Number XLIX December. 23, 1775 443
    • Number L December 30, 1775 451 Edition: current; Page: [vii]
    • Number LI January 6, 1776 461
    • Number LII January 13, 1776 469
    • Number LIII January 20, 1776 477
    • Number LIV January 27, 1776 485
    • Number LV February 3, 1776 491
    • Number LVI February 10, 1776 497
    • Number LVII February 17, 1776 505
    • Number LVIII February 24, 1776 511
    • Number LIX March 2, 1776 517
    • Number LX March 9, 1776 527
    • Number LXI March 12, 1776 535
    • Number LXII March 23, 1776 543
    • Number LXIII March 30, 1776 551
    • Number LXIV April 6, 1776 561
    • Number LXV April 13, 1776 569
    • Number LXVI April 20, 1776 577
    • Number LXVII April 27, 1776 585
    • Number LXVIII May 4, 1776 591
    • Number LXIX May 11, 1776 599
    • Number LXX May 18, 1776 607
    • Number LXXI May 25, 1776 615
    • Number LXXII June 1, 1776 621
    • Number LXXIII June 8, 1776 629
    • Number LXXIV June 15, 1776 635
    • Number LXXV June 22, 1776 641
    • Number LXXVI June 29, 1776 647
    • Number LXXVII July 6, 1776 653
    • Number LXXVIII July 13, 1776 659
    • Number LXXIX July 20, 1776 669
    • Number LXXX July 27, 1776 675
    • Number LXXXI August 3, 1776 681 Edition: current; Page: [viii]
    • Number LXXXII August 10, 1776 687
    • Number LXXXIII August 17, 1776 693
    • Number LXXXIV August 24, 1776 701
    • Number LXXXV August 30, 1776 707
    • Number LXXXVI September 8, 1776 713
    • Number LXXXVII September 14, 1776 719
    • Number LXXXVIII September 21, 1776 725
    • Number LXXXIX September 28, 1776 731
    • Number XC October 6, 1776 737
    • Number XCI October 12, 1776 743
  • Index 749
Edition: current; Page: [ix]


Once again, serendipity has helped set the course of my academic life. I happened to be at a Liberty Fund gathering in June of 2012 on the British debate over Colonial American resistance, 1764–1776, when The Crisis came up in conversation. Hans Eicholz, of Liberty Fund, and Jack Greene, professor emeritus at Johns Hopkins, were discussing the possibility of bringing out a scholarly edition of The Crisis—all ninety-two issues of it under one cover. I had written an article about this London weekly a few years before. They agreed that I was a logical choice for editor of a Liberty Fund compilation, and, four years later, here we are. Jack and Hans are fine scholars; I am flattered by their trust in me. Jeremy Black, at the University of Exeter, and Timothy Breen, now emeritus at Northwestern, were kind enough to read over my introductory essay. Pat Gallagher and Laura Goetz championed my cause at Liberty Fund. Laura skillfully copyedited and guided the manuscript through to Dan Kirklin, who expertly took the manuscript into production and handed it off to Otto Barz at Publishing Synthesis for typesetting. Kate Mertes then did the index. Bill Pidduck, publisher and chairman of Adam Matthew Digital, generously shared what his team had done with The Crisis in its online Eighteenth Century Journals Portal ( so that this edition could be produced.

What Liberty Fund does to make historical texts available to modern readers reflects a rare commitment to the life of the mind. It is an honor to be associated with such an effort. I am quite certain that the men behind The Crisis would marvel at what Pierre Goodrich, founder of Liberty Fund, made possible through his vision and by his generosity.

Neil L. York
Edition: current; Page: [x] Edition: current; Page: [xi]


  • EPITAPH on the Cruel Death of CRISIS,
  • HERE to the flames poor CRISIS was configu’d,
  • His body is consum’d, but not his mind,
  • For, from his ashes, many forms shall rise,
  • TRUTH may be burnt alive, but never dies.1

So observed the Morning Post about The Crisis, one member of the London press lamenting the passing of another, even as it sought to reassure readers that the quest for truth would not be deterred. As it turned out, The Crisis did not die a “cruel death,” despite the efforts of government authorities to suppress it.2 The third issue, which appeared on 4 February 1775, had been burned publicly at the order of Parliament. And yet, The Crisis continued to be printed for more than another year and a half, ninety-two issues in all, much to the irritation, no doubt, of those who hoped the public burning, followed by the prosecution of one of the publication’s presumed printers, would crush it.

Edition: current; Page: [xii]

But the men behind this weekly, men every bit as shadowy now as they were then, had made it clear that they would not be easily intimidated. “The CRISIS will be carried on with spirit, in defiance of Lawless Power, upon the true principles of the Constitution,” they informed London readers as they prepared the first issue for publication. They pledged “even at the risk of every thing that is dear to man, to rescue the Liberty of the Press, the Natural Rights of mankind, and the Constitution of the British Empire in England and America, from that Ruin with which they are now threatened.”3 That they continued to print The Crisis each Saturday for so many months to come, was a testament to the growing power of the press and to the rise of a public whose political voice could not be silenced by legislative fiat or judicial decree.

The Crisis pursued its political objectives with a vituperative intensity that set it apart from its contemporaries in the London press. The Crisis oozed sarcasm from its pages; its sardonic tone most likely added to the anger of policy makers even as it fed the appetite of readers who relished the irreverence. It cleared the literary ground that others, perhaps most famously Thomas Paine in his Common Sense, would later seed. Nonetheless, different plants grew from this rhetorically similar soil. Paine criticized one king as a first step toward condemning monarchy altogether; the men behind The Crisis never went that far. For all of their complaints against crown and parliament, for all of their warnings that the wrongs committed against Americans might next be visited upon Britons, they did not advocate overthrowing George III. When rebellious Americans decided on an independent republic as the solution to their imperial problem, they and the authors of The Crisis parted ways. However hard The Crisis had worked to create a transatlantic community of protest, however much it drew on a philosophical tradition equally appealing to dissident colonists, their social circumstances and the political ideology that grew out of them were fundamentally different. Thus The Crisis provides a study of contrasts between what became revolution in America but remained protest in Britain. Edition: current; Page: [xiii] Just as Paine was not the first to put the call for “common sense” to good polemical use, there were others who had already titled their efforts at political consciousness-raising The Crisis. More than sixty years earlier, Richard Steele’s pamphlet of that title urged readers to rely on their “common sense” and support the Hanoverian succession, thereby upholding the principles of the Glorious Revolution and preventing any return of Stuart absolutism. Parliament, Steele instructed readers, embodied the notion that all legitimate government was based on consent; the authority of the crown, he admonished, had to be limited because “absolute Power in one person” was but “clandestine tyranny;” and the people, he stressed, could justifiably resist any attack on their constitutional rights because those rights came from nature, not government.4

Where Steele focused on the British Isles, the anonymous author of The Crisis published in 1766 looked beyond them, to the larger empire, when protesting against the Stamp Act and the flawed thinking that led to its passage. He condemned any attempt to tax the colonists directly as unconstitutional, but he, like Steele before him, appealed to reason rather than emotion and avoided ad hominem attacks; stylistically, neither anticipated what would be done in The Crisis reprinted here.5

That far more strident Crisis debuted in London on 21 January 1775 and appeared weekly, without interruption, through 12 October 1776. More like a brief pamphlet than a true newspaper, a typical issue ran six pages with perhaps three thousand words in total, each issue composed of a single essay with nothing else to accompany it: no general news and Edition: current; Page: [xiv] no advertisements placed by others. It had to compete for readers in a city bustling with printers and publishers. Imperial affairs, and their implications for Britons, had become increasingly prominent in the press, with some writers—anonymously, as was the fashion—defending government as vigorously as others condemned it. As an anti-government weekly The Crisis followed in the wake of John Wilkes’ The North Briton and, later, The Whisperer.6 Failed attempts to silence them probably only added to their readership and emboldened those who eventually brought out The Crisis.

Important, too, were the bi- and thrice-weekly newspapers that carried essays critical of government policy. These essays were necessarily briefer than what appeared in a free-standing weekly like The Crisis because they had to be squeezed into the columns of four-page sheets, where usually half of the overall space was given over to advertisements. Still, those newspaper essays could deploy their fewer words to equal effect. Most notable among these stood the “Junius” series that Edition: current; Page: [xv] ran in the Public Advertiser.7 Earlier essayists like Richard Steele had been no less didactic, but much more deferential. Nonetheless, caustic as “Junius” or John Wilkes or The Whisperer could be, none were as unrelentingly strident or as witheringly personal as what would be printed in the pages of The Crisis.

London, on the eve of the American rebellion, with its population of nearly a million, had just under twenty papers. Boston, by comparison, with a population of fewer than twenty thousand, had five weekly newspapers—an indication of higher literacy rates and a higher standard of living in the provincial town’s laboring classes than in the imperial capital. The divisions that marked pro- and anti-government newspapers were not quite as pronounced in London as in Boston,8 and yet there were tendencies in the London press that would distinguish a Public Advertiser (which had run “Junius”) or St. James Chronicle from the more staid London Gazette.9 None printed more than thirty-five hundred copies per issue; most printed far fewer than Edition: current; Page: [xvi] that. The Crisis, with its weekly output of around two thousand, stood somewhere near the middle.10

All, regardless of size, were involved in a conscious effort to shape public opinion; even more, they were part of a reshaping of the public sphere itself.11 By the time that The Crisis became part of London’s political scene the expectation that opinion out-of-doors should play a role in shaping the policy made indoors at Whitehall and Westminster had grown increasingly insistent. The London coffeehouses, where so many newspapers were left for distribution and sale, grew in political importance as proceedings in the House of Commons were now being summarized regularly, whereas less than a decade before Parliament had banned such reporting.12 Still barred from reporting debates in the House of Lords, the press nonetheless leaked news of the proceedings there, as peers passed along notes, even speeches, as their colleagues in the Commons had been doing for years. Consequently, what has been said about the American press and the rise of colonial protest could also be said of the press in London: just as colonists developed a greater sense of danger through what essayists in the press claimed imperial policies portended for their future, Britons, too, came to worry about tyranny anticipated as much as tyranny experienced. It was that agitated state of mind that The Crisis sought to heighten.13

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The Crisis caught the attention of Parliament at the same moment as a just-published pamphlet with a similar title, The Present Crisis. Superficially they appear to be an odd pairing in parliamentary minds: The Crisis condemned the king and his men for doing too much, for oppressing the colonists with unconstitutional policies; The Present Crisis, by contrast, called on the king to do even more, to exercise his prerogative powers more aggressively and drive disobedient colonists back into line.14 The pamphlet offended one group in Parliament, the weekly another, but they concurred that these attacks on the crown could not be tolerated. The House of Lords led, and the Commons followed, in a joint condemnation of both publications. With the third issue of The Crisis as their evidence, they censured the weekly “as a false, daring, infamous, seditious, and treasonable Libel on His Majesty, designed to alienate the Affections of His Majesty’s Subjects from his Royal person and Government, and to disturb the Peace of the Kingdom.” They chastised The Present Crisis with equally harsh language, adding that it was “an audacious insult on His Majesty, tending to subvert the fundamental Laws and Liberties of these Kingdoms, and to introduce an illegal and arbitrary Power.”15

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To underscore their disgust, the Lords and the Commons had also agreed that the pamphlet and the offending issue of the weekly should be destroyed by the “common hangman.” Handbills circulated around London, announcing “The Last DYING SPEECH of the CRISIS,” which would be burned at the gate to the entrance of Westminster palace yard on the afternoon of March 6th, and the next afternoon in front of the Royal Exchange. The Present Crisis would join it in the blaze.

Authorities may have come away from the first staged display of governmental prowess feeling that they had made their point; not so the second. At Westminster, the sheriffs of the city of London and Middlesex County carried off their duties with no difficulties. The crowd of hundreds that gathered did nothing to disrupt the proceedings, beyond uttering some “Hissings and Shoutings.” The hangman stacked wood, started a fire, and tossed copies of the offending pamphlet and disreputable weekly on the little pyre, with a ring of constables forming a circle around it.16

The orderly affair of that day was followed by chaos the next. The Royal Exchange, site of the second burning, was located on Threadneedle Street in the heart of London, across from the Bank of England and close by the lord mayor’s mansion house. That was an area where crowds could more easily turn into mobs. Sure enough, events there were “abundantly more diverting,” as one newspaper put it wryly afterward. The crowd that gathered was larger than at Westminster, the number of constables, smaller. The hangman had difficulty getting a fire started because people interfered with him; insults were hurled, dead cats and dogs and other

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The Royal Exchange, as viewed from Cornhill Street in London. From a copper line engraving by John Green of the scene produced by painter and illustrator Samuel Wale. Originally printed in London and its Environs Described, 6 vols. (London: R. & J. Dodsley, 1761), where it appeared between pp. 280–81 in the fifth volume. Later removed and colored by hand. The attempt to burn a copy of the third issue of The Crisis here the day after another had been burned in the yard at Wesminster Palace produced a riot.


John Collyer’s engraving of Westminster Hall, as reproduced on copper plate for and printed in John Noorthouck’s A New History of London (London: R. Baldwin, 1773), p. 692. The third issue of The Crisis was publicly burned in the yard here without incident on 6 March 1775.

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debris were flung at anyone representing authority; one of the sheriffs was pulled from his horse and beaten; the stack of wood and tinder was broken apart before the offending pieces were fully burned, smoldering bits being scattered along the street; three men seized by the sheriffs or constables were freed by the crowd so that no one could be charged with creating a public disturbance. What was intended to be a demonstration of governmental resolve instead turned into embarrassing street theatre.17

With that, parliamentary action against The Present Crisis ceased. No legal case against it was pursued. The real test for The Crisis still lay ahead. Parliament exercised its authority to direct Attorney General Edward Thurlow to prosecute those responsible for it. That freed Thurlow from the need to seek a grand jury indictment, which he knew he was not likely to get in London anyway because any attempt to stifle the press would be unpopular with the public.

When the men behind The Crisis had claimed, in their very first issue, that freedom of the press was a bulwark of English liberty, they repeated a widely shared sentiment. “The liberty of the press is indeed essential to the nature of a free state,” wrote William Blackstone in his influential Commentaries on English law. Nonetheless, Blackstone’s notion of a free press differed from that of most printers and high court judges sided with him, not the printers. Printers believed that truth should be a mitigating factor in any defense; Blackstone limited press protection to freedom from prior restraint. As Blackstone explained it, “provocation, and not falsity” was the key issue. Any printer who published “what is improper, mischievous, or illegal” must accept “the consequence of his own temerity.” Any writing that demonstrated “a pernicious Edition: current; Page: [xxi] tendency” and threatened “good peace and order” ought to be held legally liable for any resulting public unrest, its instigators punished for any harm done; such could be “the only foundation of civil liberty,” Blackstone concluded.18

The use of prior restraint had ended by 1695, after Parliament allowed a licensing act that it first passed thirty-three years before to lapse. That 1662 act had expressed a concern that “heretical, schismatical, blasphemous, and treasonable books, pamphlets and papers” threatened the peace of the kingdom. Parliament therefore directed that no book be published without a proper royal license. It provided a second line of defense as well: no book concerning religion could be published without approval by the Archbishop of Canterbury; no book on the common law could be printed without first being reviewed by a lord chief justice.19 Those printers who published without a license from the crown faced the possibility of being tried for and convicted of seditious libel, which meant that in an extreme case they could receive the same sentence as those convicted of high treason: death.

In the years since the end of licensing, seditious libel had been gradually reduced from a capital crime to a relatively minor offense. Guilty verdicts would usually result in a judge’s sentence that involved jail time and possibly a fine rather than a long prison term or execution. Threat of prosecution for seditious libel nevertheless became the favored tool of government to combat its opponents in the press; after all, the stamp duties and advertising taxes imposed on printers increased costs but did Edition: current; Page: [xxii] not necessarily curtail criticism.20 Attorney General Thurlow and Solicitor General Alexander Wedderburn understood that an allegation of seditious libel against The Crisis or any other publication had to involve more than simple defamation of a public official. Prosecutors needed to prove malicious intent, with a further intention to incite public unrest. Convincing jurors that they had made their case would be their most difficult task, particularly since they were responding to a parliamentary directive rather than proceeding on the basis of a grand jury indictment. Moreover, there was increasing pressure for judges to allow jurors in libel trials to determine questions of law (whether a libel actually occurred) as well as matters of fact (whether the accused wrote or printed the text in question).21

Deciding not to risk overshooting the mark, Thurlow and Wedderburn made no mention of treason in their formal charge against The Crisis, despite the complaint by the Lords and the Commons that it had committed Edition: current; Page: [xxiii] a “treasonable Libel.” And even though “Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw” appeared on every issue of The Crisis, from the first through the last, Shaw was not prosecuted. Instead, another London printer, Samuel Axtell, was taken to court. It is indeed possible that more than one printer was involved and that the only witness the prosecution could muster agreed to testify against Axtell, with no mention of Shaw.22 The real reasons remain elusive. London printers had become adept at keeping their presses from prying eyes. Listing the place of publication could be a ruse or even an act of hiding in plain sight, with journeymen doing the actual work and master printers not in the shop. Experience taught prosecutors that going after any of them legally could prove to be more trouble than it was worth. Axtell, for his part, was tried in absentia in June 1775, Axtell apparently choosing not to attend his own trial. Found guilty of being a “wicked[,] seditious[,] malicious and ill-disposed person” who “unlawfully[,] wickedly[,]” and “maliciously” maligned both crown and Parliament, the Court of King’s Bench sentenced him to ninety days in jail.23

The Crisis continued to be published each week, trial regardless—as indeed had happened with other writers or printers charged with seditious libel over the past decade. Like them, the men funding The Crisis reaffirmed their commitment to a defense of English liberties. They repeated their warnings about how those liberties were in jeopardy, but they made no mention of Axtell’s trial in their weekly. Perhaps Edition: current; Page: [xxiv] they foresaw that the days of book-burnings and prosecutions were ending, though English law did not formally abandon the charge of seditious libel until 2009. Interestingly enough, when Parliament that year finally discontinued seditious libel as the basis for a criminal prosecution, it tied itself to notions of press liberty and to deeper notions of freedom that The Crisis had relied on in its defense to the public over two centuries before.24

We now know slightly more than Attorney General Thurlow did about authorship of The Crisis, but only because three names appeared on essays published after Axtell’s prosecution: William Stewardson, Philip Thicknesse and, most intriguingly, Thomas Shaw, the printer who was identified at the end of every issue. Stewardson, apparently a Southwark sailmaker by trade, had his name attached to issue No. 67. The tone of this piece was not as harsh as many of the others that bracketed it. Stew-ardson, if he was indeed the author, condemned bad policies and foolish ministers, but he was not so caustic in his criticism of the king. This was most likely the same Stewardson who also took an excursion into pamphlet writing on his own.25

Philip Thicknesse, identified as the author of No. 30, was one of the more colorful characters of his age. Thicknesse comes down to us as Edition: current; Page: [xxv] a quarrelsome, eccentric gadfly who made friends and enemies with equal ease. As a youth he sought adventure abroad, first in Georgia, then in Jamaica. He bought a commission in the Royal Marines after returning to England, retired to Bath after a middling military career, and then moved to a cottage outside of town, still a contentious contrarian.26 An inheritance case that he lost on appeal to the House of Lords was the focus of issue No. 30, which stands as the great exception to an otherwise single-minded obsession with Britain, America, the empire, and a king failing to do his duty. Why, exactly, The Crisis took up Thicknesse’s cause remains a mystery, like so much else about the weekly and the people who started it and kept it going.27

Shaw signed his name as the author of one piece, and to part of a second, phrased as if he were responding to another author who had written for the weekly. Unlike Thicknesse, Shaw kept the focus on larger concerns—on the issues that The Crisis had made its raison d’être.28 That Shaw could affix his own name to the essay, roughly a month after Axtell’s conviction, suggests that he did not fear prosecution, even if his tone was as harsh and his condemnations as sweeping as anything printed in earlier numbers. In the second essay he reaffirmed his determination “to support FREEDOM of the Press” and defend the “CHARTERED Edition: current; Page: [xxvi] RIGHTS and CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTIES of the BRAVE Americans” as well as the rights of Englishmen at home.29

Shaw’s first essay used the same literary tactics as others in the series, ranging through the past to find examples that could be used for the present. Having already printed numerous pieces that decried the corruption and fall of republican Rome, Shaw railed against “Neronian Cruelty,” knowing that previous issues had set the stage for his historical allusion. Likewise, he could warn that conspiracies were afoot to destroy English and American liberties, and simply mention the king and his ministers without having to explain which particular ministerial or parliamentary actions he had in mind; those points too had already been raised. He placed God and Magna Carta on the side of good, arrayed against pensioners and placemen who personified the bad; he juxtaposed liberty and progress against slavery and ruin. These were all familiar tropes, words evoking symbols, symbols incarnated in the political reality he constructed for his readers. Although Shaw reminded those readers of their duty to defend their rights, when he called for Englishmen to rise up and fight oppression he did not mean literally, as the colonists were doing. Rather, he expected them to be able to make subtle distinctions, to know what separated Britons from Americans as well as what joined them in common cause.

The Crisis is notable for the assumptions that Thomas Shaw and the other men behind it had about the intellectual world of their readers.30 They played off Britons’ deepest fears, capitalizing on a state of mind that they did not create but sought to reinforce. Conspiracy theory was as popular then as ever; not surprisingly, conspiracies loomed large in the Anglo-American political world described by The Crisis. Conspiracy against American rights marked imperial policy; conspiracy Edition: current; Page: [xxvii] against the rights of Englishmen, in England itself, would come next, readers were warned. The weekly reserved its sharpest, harshest comments for those most responsible for these dark designs: Lord North, “engendered in the womb of hell,”31 who headed a depraved ministry; the Earl of Bute, long out of power but still active behind the scenes, corrupting others with his baneful influence;32 Lord Chancellor Apsley and Chief Justice Mansfield, who twisted the law to serve unjust ends; secretary of state for American affairs Lord George Germain and his predecessor, the Earl of Dartmouth, who endorsed and passed along the nefarious policies that brutalized Americans; General Thomas Gage, who in his dual role as army commander in North America and governor of Massachusetts, set loose the troops to murder and plunder; Samuel Johnson and John Wesley, mercenaries whose pens were for hire, defending the indefensible actions of “A Bloody Court, A Bloody Ministry, And A Bloody Parliament.”33

Unlike other newspaper essays and pamphlets that attacked George III obliquely through his ministers, The Crisis targeted the King directly and repeatedly, utterly undeterred by Axtell’s conviction in court. The authors did not mince words, even likening George III to Charles I and suggesting that he deserved the same fate. One issue addressed him derisively as his “TYRANNIC MAJESTY—the DEVIL” and ticked off a litany of his wrongs before concluding that in his case there could be only one proper judgment: the”Wages of these Sins is Death.”34 Nevertheless, The Crisis still held out hope that the empire could be restored and the nation saved if George III found his better Edition: current; Page: [xxviii] self—that is, if he embraced Viscount Bolingbroke’s notion of the patriot king.35 Remembering what George III himself had stated over the years about his commitment to serving his subjects, Shaw and his compatriots dismissed their flesh and blood monarch as a perversion of Bolingbroke’s ideal of the people’s king who would selflessly protect them and uphold the principles of the Glorious Revolution.36 Asking, rhetorically, “are we not Descendants” of those patriots who overthrew James II and restored balanced government, The Crisis urged its readers to denounce Tyranny “in the Name of those Ancestors.”37

Although the authors associated with The Crisis stood by the idea of mixed and balanced government within a monarchical system, they reflected the republican tendencies of what historian Caroline Robbins called the “commonwealth” tradition.38 There lay an inherent tension between their own brand of libertarianism and their desire to preserve, even strengthen, constitutional government. Like so many of their generation, including those whose politics may have differed from theirs, the authors who wrote for The Crisis took it as a given that fundamental Edition: current; Page: [xxix] rights came from God and through nature, that all legitimate government depended on the consent of the governed, and that even though the king-in-parliament reigned supreme, no one stood above the law and no power short of God’s could be unlimited. The Glorious Revolution had restored principles going back to the ancient constitution of Britain, historically difficult to reconstruct but no less real because of it, disappearing into a foggy Saxon past for some and back to even earlier Gothic antecedents for others.39

Where modern scholars have attempted to separate intellectual threads, The Crisis was typical of the age in weaving them all into its own ideological fabric. For example, one issue alluded approvingly to the great medieval jurists Henry de Bracton and Sir John Fortescue. “The king must not be under man but under God and under law, because law makes the king,” de Bracton had written, adding that there “is no rex where will rules rather than lex”—a position on limited government not so different from what The Crisis would champion five hundred years later.40 That so many of the pen names of the authors in its pages—Junius, Brutus, Casca—were drawn from the history of republican Rome was indicative of the tendency to run ancient and modern together, to Edition: current; Page: [xxx] deal in archetypes when advising those living in the present on how to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past.

Americans had been right, insisted The Crisis, to resist the foolish policies pursued by Lord North and, before him, the unconstitutional connivings of George Grenville. Virtual representation arguments had been a canard; Americans should have been allowed to tax themselves, which better and worthier men like Lord Camden and the Earl of Chatham—when Chatham was true to his principles, that is—understood.41 Oppressed by crown and parliament, Americans had the right, even the duty, to resist, as indeed did all people who suffered from tyranny.42 The Crisis hinted broadly that any conflict between mother country and colonies would eventually draw in France and Spain, a geopolitical awareness shared by dissident colonists across the Atlantic.43

When The Crisis first went to press it had not been difficult to draw analogies between British and American conditions, to speak of the common cause, a transatlantic association of the aggrieved. To those who defended government and contended that protesting Americans would not be satisfied with anything less than full independence, The Crisis countered that discontented colonists only wanted those rights guaranteed them as Englishmen: they would not leave the empire unless driven from it. Early on, Shaw and his associates seemed to believe that reconciliation was still possible, that the empire could serve the needs and meet the aspirations of Americans as well as Britons.

After the shooting started, The Crisis joined a chorus of those calling for commissioners to be sent out from London to negotiate a Edition: current; Page: [xxxi] peaceful settlement.44 When, after more than a year of bloodshed, it became evident that no accommodation could be reached, that Americans who had once argued they only wanted their rights within the empire now insisted they could only secure them outside it, The Crisis did not denounce them as disingenuous or as traitors to the common cause. It printed the Declaration of Independence, though basically without comment. Only seven more issues appeared thereafter, essentially to reaffirm traditional Whig principles as exemplified by the texts from which its authors drew.45 It accepted, however reluctantly, a different future, where America could become a haven for the oppressed, separated from Britain, not united with it.46 Indeed, the final issue closed with the men behind The Crisis stating that they themselves had decided to sail for more hospitable American shores.47

Some of the earlier issues of The Crisis garnered American notice and were reprinted in New York, Newport, Philadelphia, and a few other places.48 For modern readers unaware of the transatlantic nature of imperial protest, that by itself may well seem impressive; for those seeking Edition: current; Page: [xxxii] a more coordinated, systematic sharing of ideas, its circulation around the empire probably appears fairly hit-or-miss. To be sure, The Crisis did not enjoy the reprint success of Paine’s Common Sense or, earlier, of John Dickinson’s Pennsylvania Farmer Letters. But then the actual influence of writers on readers, appealing as it is among historians to try and prove, is inherently elusive.

Even though The Crisis stood as a publication apart in its acerbic language and combative tone, it should also be considered alongside others that made their rights arguments less intemperately. They were all products of the same philosophical and political traditions. In the world that The Crisis shared with other defenders of English freedoms, fundamental law was real and basic human rights were antecedent to those bestowed by any government. Moreover, all legitimate government was a compact between ruler and ruled, the duties of the ruler being as great as the responsibilities of the ruled. In the British empire the rights of Englishmen extended fully to the colonies, with nothing lost through transatlantic migration. Charters, for colonists, were constitutions, just as they claimed, not mere contracts, revocable by crown decree.49 If British-Americans were obliged, because of British tyranny, to rise in rebellion and eventually turn to revolution, The Crisis accepted that they did what men of conscience had always had the right to do. Ultimately the former colonists would point to their successful revolution as evidence of their exceptionalism, even as proof of their peculiar destiny in the larger world. It is curious if not ironic that a weekly British paper dedicated to saving the empire from itself promoted that very-American state of mind.

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Editorial Note

The printed source for this edition of The Crisis comes from the copy that is found in the Bodleian Library. We were able to access an electronic version of the source from the online Eighteenth Century Journals Portal of Adam Matthew Digital, a London-based company that makes many primary-source collections available digitally for the first time. The texts were then converted into a digital manuscript that was used as the basis for typesetting.

Following Liberty Fund practice, we have not altered the texts: we have retained original spelling and punctuation with a few exceptions (we have modernized long esses to s and removed repeated quotation marks at the beginning of each line of the quoted material). We have silently corrected typographical errors that appeared in the original source. The editor has created footnotes to provide the reader with information about people and events that will help put the writings in their historical context and also serve as a complement to the texts themselves. We have kept the footnotes that appeared in The Crisis in their original format (symbols, such as asterisks or daggers); new editorial notes appear beneath The Crisis notes and are indicated by arabic numerals.

For works cited frequently in the footnotes, the following shortened citations have been used:

Blackstone, Commentaries: William Blackstone, Commentaries on the Laws of England, 4 vols. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1765–1769; orig. ed.) (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979).

Cobbett, Parliamentary History: William Cobbett et al., eds., The Parliamentary History of England, 36 vols. (London: T. C. Hansard, 1806–1820).

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Labaree, Papers of Franklin: Leonard Labaree et al., eds., The Papers of Benjamin Franklin, 39 vols. (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1959—).

Namier and Brooke, House of Commons: Sir Lewis Namier and John Brooke, The House of Commons, 17541790, 3 vols. (London: Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, 1964).

Oxford DNB: The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 60 vols. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004).

Pickering, Statutes: Danby Pickering, ed., The Statutes at Large, 46 vols. (Cambridge: Joseph Bentham, 1762–1807).

Simmons and Thomas, Proceedings and Debates: R. C. Simmons and P. D. G. Thomas, eds., Proceedings and Debates of the British Parliament Respecting North America, 17541783, 6 vols. (White Plains, N.Y.: Kraus International Publications, 1982).6

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Edition: current; Page: [xxxvi] Edition: current; Page: [1]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Halfpenny.

Potior visa est Periculosa libertas quieto servitio


To the People of England and America.

Friends and Fellow Subjects,

IT is with the greatest Propriety I address this Paper to you: It is in your Defence, at this great, this important CRISIS, I take the Pen in hand: A CRISIS big with the Fate of the most glorious Empire known in the Records of Time; and by your Firmness and Resolution ONLY, Edition: current; Page: [2] it can be saved from DESTRUCTION: By your Firmness and Resolution, you may preserve to yourselves, your immediate Offspring, and latest Posterity, all the glorious Blessings of Freedom, given by Heaven to undeserving Mortals: By your Supineness and Pussilanimity, you will entail on yourselves, your Children, and Millions yet unborn, Misery and Slavery.

It is in your Defence I now stand forth to oppose, the most sanguinary, and despotic Court that ever disgraced a free Country.

It is in your Defence I now unsheath the Sword of Justice, to oppose the most profligate and abandoned Administration, that ever shewed the Weakness, or abused the Confidence of a Prince.

It is in your Defence I now stand forth, with a Firmness and Resolution becoming an Englishman determined to be free, to oppose every arbitrary. and every unconstitutional Act, of a venal and corrupt Majority, smuggled into the present new fangled Court Parliament, through the Villainy of Lord North,3 and purchased with the public Money, to Edition: current; Page: [3] betray their Trust, enslave the People, subvert the Protestant Religion, and destroy the Glory, Honor, Interest, and Commerce, both foreign and domestic, of England and America; and all this villainous Sacrifice of a great Empire, a brave People, and the glorious Truths of Heaven; to comply with the ambitious Views, and gratify the mean vindictive Spirit of one, assisted by a numerous Train of deputy Tyrants, whose sole aim has been, to trample under Foot the sacred Rights of Mankind, and the English Constitution.

It is in your Defence, and in Defence of the Liberties of my Country, that I now stand forth, with a fixed Resolution to oppose, and shew to the World, unawed by Fear the dangerous Tendency of every Act of lawless Power, whether it shall proceed from the King, the Lords, or the Commons.

I will endeavour in Conjunction with my fellow Labourer in this great Work, to rescue the Liberty of the Press, (that Bulwark of Freedom)4 from the Ruin with which it is now threatened, by Special Juries of Middlesex, and the arbitrary Decisions of a Scotch Chief Justice,5 the glorious Edition: current; Page: [4] Advocate for despotic Sway. The heavy Fines, and cruel Imprisonment of the two Woodfall’s,6 without even the Appearance of Guilt, and contrary to the Intention of the Jury, will be faithfully recorded by the Pen of Truth, and fill many Pages in the black Catalogue of Murray’s Crimes.

It shall be my Endeavour in this degenerate Age, to revive the dying Embers of Freedom, and rouse my Countrymen in England, from that lethargic State of Supineness and Inattention, in which they seem to sleep, at this Time of national Danger, when a mighty Kingdom, and all the dearest Rights of Men are hastening to their Ruin; that they may yet stand high on the Roll of Fame, equal with their brave and virtuous Brethren in America, who are now struggling in the glorious Cause of Liberty, against the cruel Oppressions, and destructive Designs of exalted Villains, whose Actions will be transmitted to Posterity in Characters of Blood, and their Names forever branded with eternal Marks of Infamy; while America will remain the Glory and Admiration of the World, and be held in the highest Veneration to the end of Time. Let not the long envied Glory of Britain, O! my Countrymen, be eclipsed by the virtuous Actions of the Americans in the new World; our Danger is the same, their Cause, is our Cause, with the constitutional Rights of America, must fall, the Liberties of England; let us then, shew ourselves equal to them Edition: current; Page: [5] in Virtue, Courage, Firmness, and Resolution, and as they have done, prove to the World, we are alike Enemies to Tyranny, and lawless Power, and that we never will be Slaves to One, nor to a Majority of FIVE HUNDRED AND FIFTY-EIGHT TYRANTS.7

We will strain every Nerve, and brave every Danger, to stimulate our Countrymen this Side the Atlantic, to a noble Exertion of their Rights as Freemen; to shew them the Danger; as well as the Infamy of remaining quiet Spectators of their OWN DESTRUCTION; and to remove that dark Cloud of Slavery, which now obscures the glorious Light of Freedom; and, but for the Virtue of our Forefathers, would Ages ago, have overwhelmed this Kingdom, like the States around us, in a long, a lasting Night of MISERY and RUIN.

Upon this Plan, and with these Principles we set out, and intend to proceed, that the present, (if not too far degenerated) and future Generations, may enjoy undiminished ALL the BLESSINGS of LIBERTY; To accomplish this End, we will risk every Thing that is dear to Man, and brave both Royal and Ministerial Vengeance, to preserve from RUIN (if possible) the NATURAL RIGHTS of MANKIND, THE Sacred Constutition of the British Empire, and the Freedom of our Country.

Edition: current; Page: [6]

Agreeable to our Motto we shall ever think, “Liberty with Danger, preferable to Servitude with Security.” 8

We should glory in the Smiles of our Sovereign, but will never purchase them at the Expence of our Liberty; nor will we ever give up, but with our Lives, the Right to expose and publickly display in all its hideous Forms the cruel Despotism of Tyrants. We can conceive no Reason, why the Laws and Religion of England should be sported with, and trampled under Foot, by a Prince of the House of Brunswick, rather than by one of the House of Stuart,9 surely upon every Principle of Justice, Reason, and Common Sense,10 whatever is Tyranny and Murder in one Man, is equally so in another; and if it is just to oppose and resist one, it is as just to oppose and resist the other. It is not a Name, nor an Office however important, that can, or ought to bring Respect and Reverence to the Possessor, while he acts below, and is unworthy of them. Folly and Villainy ought to have no Asylum, nor can Titles sanctify Crimes, tho’ in our Days they protect Criminals. A Edition: current; Page: [7] Royal, Right Honourable, or a Right Reverend Robber, is the most dangerous Robber, and consequently the most to be detested.

Our modern Advocates for Villainy and Slavery, have found out a new Way of arguing and convincing the Judgements of Men; they make nice Distinctions without a Difference, and tell the World. what was Tyranny in the Time of Charles the first,11 is not Tyranny in the Days of George the Third, and to this they add a long Catalogue of Virtues which he never possessed, they say he is pious; that his chief Aim is to render his Subjects, a happy, great, and free People; (and indeed he has more than once said so himself) these and many other Falshoods equally wicked and absurd, they endeavour to instill into the Minds of the too easily deluded English. These, and such like Artifices, have ever been made Use of in the Reigns of arbitrary Kings, to deceive the People, and make them with more ease and to Chains well polished submit their Necks, and even Reverence and adore the Hand that rivets them. Thus do Tyrants succeed, and the galling Yoke of Slavery, so much complained of by almost every Nation in the World, becomes a Crime of the first MAGNITUDE, in the People through their own Credulity and vile SUBMISSION. Truth, in Spite of all the false colouring of venal Writers speaks a different Language, and declares in Opposition to the Pen of Falsehood, that Bloodshed and Slaughter, Violence and Oppression, Popery and Lawless Power characterise the present Reign; and we will defy even the pensioned Johnson, after the closest Examination of the two Reigns, to tell which is the best. Charles broke his Coronation Oath, butchered his Subjects, made Ten Thousand Solemn Promises he never intended to perform, and often committed Perjury: (but these are no Crimes in a King, for all Kings have a DIVINE RIGHT, to be DEVILS) He, tried to overturn the Constitution by Force, but found his Mistake when it was too late, and that even Royal Villainy does not always succeed, and when the Edition: current; Page: [8] just Vengeance of Heaven overtook him, he saw, (though he would not believe it before, and imagined, he had a Divine Right to shed human Blood) that the same Power, which raised him up, could pull him down: The present Sovereign, not wishing to make a Figure in History without a Head; and being more mild and gentle, just and good, has improved upon the Plan, and is now tearing up the Constitution by the Roots, under the FORM of LAW; this Method of Proceeding is certainly much safer, and more judicious, as well as just; for what Right can an Englishman have to complain, when he is LEGALLY made a SLAVE by ACT OF PARLIAMENT. How wicked! How rebellious! must the Americans be, and what leveling Principles must they possess, to resist the Divine Right of the King, and the divine Right of the Lords and Commons, under the Sanction of a divine Act of Parliament, sent from Heaven, to plunder, butcher, starve, or enslave them, just as it shall come into their divine Heads, or the Heads of their divine Instruments; and when once they have carried this divine Law into Execution, according to their righteous Intention, we shall soon see on this Side the Atlantic, that they have the same divine Right, to use us, in the same merciful and divine Manner. This is but the first divine Step, of a diabolical Plan for shedding HUMAN BLOOD, reducing an industrious, brave, flourishing, and free People, from a State of affluence, to that of MISERY, BEGGARY, and SLAVERY; and Nothing, but a Resolution in the People here, will be able to prevent the next divine Step of the same Plan, from laying in RUINS, all the Rights of the British, with those of the American World.12

Edition: current; Page: [9]

The Altar of Despotism is erected in America, and we shall be the next Victims to lawless Power; all the Horrors of Slavery, now stare us in the Face; our Religion Subverted, Freedom, Law, and Right artfully undermined, the Roman Catholic Religion, not tolerated, but ESTABLISHED, a Majority of the House of Commons, and House of Lords mere Creatures of the King; in short, every Engine of Oppression and arbitrary Power is at work to accomplish our RUIN.

O my Countrymen, that we could but inspire you with noble Sentiments of Liberty, rouse you to a just sense of your immediate Danger, and make you feel, sensibly feel, all the Blessings derived from Freedom, the natural Right of every Man, but more peculiarly of Englishmen, it is our Birthright, our Inheritance, it was handed down to us by our Ancestors, and Sealed often with their Blood; let us then, in Justice to them, to ourselves, and to Posterity, make a noble constitutional Stand, in Conjunction with our noble and spirited, but suffering fellow Subjects in America, against the present Plan, long fixed by the Minions of Power to destroy it, and overturn the Constitution, a Constitution ten Thousand Times superior to any System ever devised by the Greeks or Romans.13

At such a time as this, when the merciless, the relentless Hand of Tyranny is tearing out the Vitals of Freedom, sapping the Foundations of public Edition: current; Page: [10] Security, making a Mockery of Justice, and destroying all the envied Rights of Britain, and the Truths of Heaven; I say, at such a Time, to be inattentive or inactive, is Infamy, and he who can tamely see his Country upon the Brink of RUIN, without putting out his Arm, and lending a helping Hand to rescue her from DESTRUCTION, must be an abandoned Wretch, a Disgrace to the Name of Englishman and to his Country.

N.B.14 No.2, will contain the secret Reasons urged in the Cabinet for dissolving the last Parliament, and smuggling another of the same Complexion. &c. &c.

To the People of England and America.

Some Time in the middle of March will be published, Price IS. 6d. in Quarto, on a fine Paper and new Type,

  • The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

  • Ense velut stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est, Criminibus, tacita sudant Praecordia Culpa.
  • Juvenal.15
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilius drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the harden’d Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.16
Edition: current; Page: [11]

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, and by his appointment the Corner of Little Turnstile, Holborn, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [12] Edition: current; Page: [13]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Halfpenny.

A Bloody Court,

A Bloody Ministry,


A Bloody Parliament.

THE sudden and unexpected Dissolution of the last ruinous Parliament,1 gave a just and general Alarm to the whole Nation; and we may search in vain the voluminous Pages of Grecian, Roman, or English History, to find such another plan of PREMEDITATED Edition: current; Page: [14] Villainy, for destroying at one grand stroke of ROYAL and Ministerial Policy, all the Rights of a free People. Lord North, engendered in the Womb of Hell, raised by the fostering Hand of infernal Spirits, and possessing Principles that have eclipsed all the Glories of his SATANIC Parents, had the Effrontery to declare in the Face of the House of Commons and the World, but a few Days before the Recess of the late Parliament, that they should meet AGAIN early in October, for the Dispatch of Business. When he uttered this Falshood, it was suspected by many, and he well knew it had been determined, that they should be dissolved, altho’ the precise Time was not fixed. On the 16th Day of September 1774, a Notice was published in the Gazette for the last Parliament to MEET on the 15th of November; eleven Days had not elapsed before a Proclamation appeared for its DISSOLUTION, and the calling a new Parliament. Who can guard against Deception, Artifice, and Villainy, when stamped with ROYAL AUTHORITY? The very Thought of an HONEST House of Commons struck Terror into the guilty Soul of Lord North, the diabolical Minion of ROYAL Favour, and Instrument of ROYAL Vengeance; nay, even the King (virtuous as he is) had his FEARS; and in order to secure their own Creatures and Dependents, or, in other Words, to have the old Parliament new revived, and smuggle a Majority of venal abandoned Miscreants (who would deny their God, or sell their Souls for Money) into the present House of Commons, Lord North sent Letters to all his Friends that they might be PREPARED, and it was known in the most distant Parts of England, and even the Time of Election fixed in several Boroughs in Cornwall, some Days BEFORE the Parliament was DISSOLVED. This is a TRUTH which Lord North with all his consummate Impudence cannot DENY.2

Edition: current; Page: [15]

The ministerial Hacks were immediately set to work to fabricate Lies (and publish them in the News-paper) to delude and deceive the Electors; that little or no Opposition might be made to the Tools of Government. One Report said, the Dissolution of Parliament was owing to some disagreeable Advices received from America, and that our virtuous King, with his still more virtuous Ministers, intended to adopt some conciliating Measures with Respect to the Colonies, and that it would betray a Weakness in the King to let the same Parliament meet AGAIN, to repeal those Acts, which they had but a few Months before passed. Another Report, equally true, asserted it was on Account of Intelligence received from the North, of a very ALARMING Nature; and a Third, that it was occasioned by a Difference between the French and English Ministry, which rendered such a Step necessary, as there was great Reason to believe we should soon be involved in a War, and that it would be exceedingly improper to have the Nation put in a Ferment, by a general Election, at so critical a Time as that, and when the Assistance of Parliament, would be particularly wanted. A fourth Report was, that Lord Chatham and his Friends would be immediately taken into FAVOUR, and that there was to be an entire Change in the Ministry. By these low Artifices and ministerial Lies, the People of England were lulled into a State of Supineness, and even made to lend a helping Hand to complete their OWN RUIN.3

Edition: current; Page: [16]

The subsequent Part of this Paper shall unravel the diabolical Scheme. Lord North saw a powerful Opposition forming in every Part of England; he was fearful of ASSOCATIONS; he dreaded a SOLEMN LEAGUE and COVENANT, which he was certain the People would have entered into for the Preservation of their Rights and Liberties before next May, the Time when the Parliament would have been dissolved of course; he trembled for the Event; conscious of his own Villainy, and that his HEAD had been long forfeited to the Justice of his Country, he determined to take the Electors by SURPRIZE, to put them off their GUARD, and rob them of TIME, that no Opposition might be made to his Creatures, and the People be prevented from fixing upon Men of honest independent Principles, to whom they might with safety delegate the important, the sacred Trust of Representation.

Lord North communicated his Fears to the King, painted the daring rebellious Spirit of the Americans, and told him, that the People HERE were as disloyal and disaffected, and that Hints had been thrown out in the public Prints, of Plans forming in different Parts of England, for keeping out of the new Parliament most of HIS Friends, and unless prevented by some well concerted Scheme, there was but too much Reason to believe, from the Spirit of the People, that they would succeed; an Event, says this TRAITOR, much FEARED, and greatly DREADED by every Well-wisher to your Person and Government: Should it ever take Place, and there is a Country Party, or a Majority of mock Patriots in the House of Commons, who are Enemies to all Order and Government, you must be reduced to a most degrading Situation indeed; your Edition: current; Page: [17] present FRIENDS will then be unable to give you any Assistance; and instead of the Power being in YOUR Hands, it will then be in the Hands of the PEOPLE and you will be under the disgraceful Necessity of giving your Assent to the REPEAL of every Act which has been passed for the Purpose of raising a REVENUE, and ENFORCING a due Obedience to YOUR Authority: In short, you will be a King WITHOUT POWER, and subject to the Controul of a few Demagogues for Liberty, the Dregs of Mankind, and a common Rabble, who will always support them, nay, it may even endanger the Security of your Throne; for what will not a hot-headed Parliament do, with whom the VOICE of the People can have any Weight? the Plan for reducing the Americans, and making them dependent on your WILL, must be crushed; they will triumph in the Victory obtained over the just Power of Parliament and your Prerogative; your faithful Servants will be compelled to leave you, and you will be without A REAL FRIEND to advise with. If your Majesty can get a majority of your Friends re-chosen in the new Parliament, you will be able to raise what Money you please with THEIR Assistance; you will then be able to keep your present Ministers, and preserve them from the Resentment (which has been incurred by serving of YOU) of an enraged Rabble, who are made to believe through the Licentiousness of the Press, that they labour under a Load of accumulated Grievances. You will then be able to trample under foot, Faction, Sedition, and Rebellion throughout your Dominions, and to carry every Thing before you, agreeable to your royal Pleasure; with the Power of Parliament, and your Majesty’s Firmness and Perseverance you may bring England and America into a proper State of Subjection to your WILL. To accomplish this it will be necessary to prorogue the Parliament to some future Day, then to meet, and immediately after call a Council and dissolve them; in the mean Time YOUR Friends may be made acquainted with this Determination, and be PREPARED for the Election before any Opposition can possibly be made, or the People know any Thing of the Matter.

The King, firmly resolved on the People’s RUIN, caressed his villainous Minion, admired the Plan formed for our Destruction, and, drunk with Prerogative, sucked in the baneful Advice and pursued it.

Edition: current; Page: [18]

Thus the present Parliament was smuggled, and thus in a most shameful, unprecedented, artful and sudden Manner, was the last House of Commons dissolved by the King, to answer his own and his Ministers wicked, tyrannical, and bloody Designs against the People and Constitution of this Kingdom. Such an Instance, of an infamous Exertion of the royal Prerogative, and under the like Circumstances, is not to be found in the History of England; such an INJURY and INSULT was never before offered to a FREE PEOPLE, and never ought to be FORGIVEN: It was a Piece of Hanoverian TREACHERY, BASENESS, and INGRATITUDE, which has far exceeded all the artful Villainy and low Cunning of the discarded Stuarts. His Majesty (Heaven protest so much Goodness), out of a Tenderness to the Constitution, could not make so BAD a USE of his Prerogative (five Years back) as to DISSOLVE the same Parliament, when their iniquitous Proceedings, and their Violations of Justice, had roused the Indignation of the People, and he was requested to do it by upwards of EIGHTY THOUSAND Freeholders (signed) and the general Voice of the whole Nation: But in 1774 he got the better of that Tenderness, and, to answer his own Purposes, could exert the Royal Prerogative, (which he had absolutely refused to his Subjects, in the haughty Terms of a Despot) with no other View, but to OVERTURN the Constitution of the British Empire in England and America, and DESTROY or enslave the People.4

Edition: current; Page: [19]

His Majesty, his Minions, and Instruments of Slaughter, are now safe, in robbing the People of their Property, by shameful and iniquitous Taxes in Time of Peace; safe in their Subversion of the Protestant Religion; safe and successful in their cruel Plan for starving the honest and industrious Inhabitants, and destroying the Trade of the Town of Boston in America, and the Commerce of England; safe so far, in their Attempt to destroy the Lives, Rights, Liberties, and Privileges, of Millions; I say they are safe, in all these Violations of, and Depredations on, our national Security, and natural Rights, because we are TAME.

  • These mighty Crimes will sure ere long provoke,
  • The Arm of Britain to some noble Stroke.
  • No wonder if such Deeds, should soon compel
  • America and England to rebel:
  • Then George may boast, that he, by art and hire,
  • Great Nero5 like, has set the World on Fire;
  • Might boast that Thousands by his Power fell,
  • And that he could e’en Nero far excell:
  • Bute6 shall rejoice, and instantly restore,
  • Edition: current; Page: [20]
  • The Stuart Race, in all their cursed Power;
  • Shall seize upon the Throne he should defend,
  • And Traitor prove when George most wants a Friend.
  • This may not be; but should he still oppress
  • His injured Subjects, sure they’ll seek redress,
  • When by Oppression, driven to despair,
  • If he don’t love them, they may make him FEAR;
  • And tho’ by shameful Taxes, he has seiz’d
  • Their Treasure, and their Vitals squeez’d,
  • Yet he should know, that Swords and Arms remain,
  • When call’d by WRONGS, are seldom us’d in VAIN;
  • And Freedom’s Sons, with Liberty inspir’d,
  • With mighty Rage and Indignation fir’d
  • ’Gainst Englands mortal Foes, no longer’ll yield,
  • To lawless Power, arm’d with Virtue’s Shield;
  • Their Case most Just, nay, Heaven’s sacred Cause,
  • The Cause of TRUTH and VIOLATED LAWS,
  • Will draw th’ avenging Sword, (O glorious Deed!)
  • Their Laws to save, and make those Traitors bleed;
  • Aided by Heav’n, all Danger will defy,
  • And nobly Conquer, or like Britons die,
  • Then, blessing Freedom with their parting Breath
  • Will bravely fall into the Arms of Death:
  • A glorious Death much better in the Grave,
  • A Freeman buried, than a living Slave.
  • Twas first decreed, by that great Pow’r above,
  • All should be FREE, and Heaven gave in Love
  • That Blessing to Mankind, a sacred Trust,
  • He who’d resign it, is to God unjust.

N.B. As we shall always have a particular Pleasure, in giving Satisfaction to our Readers, and complying with their Requests; we do in this Number, agreeable to the Desire of an anonymous Writer of the 21st, give a Translation of the Motto at the Head of the first Number, although was explained in the third Page of that Paper.

Edition: current; Page: [21]

Liberty with Danger is preferable to Servitude with Security.

The Motto to the Prophecy of Ruin is likewise translated in the under-written Advertisement.

No. III. will be addressed to the KING.

To the People of England and America.

On the 1st Day of March will be published, (Price is. 6d.) in Quarto, on a fine Paper and new Type,

  • The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

  • Ense velut Stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est, Criminibus, tacita sudant Praecordia Culpa.
  • Juvenal.
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilius drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the harden’d Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, Fleet Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, and by his appointment the Corner of Little Turnstile, Holborn, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [22] Edition: current; Page: [23]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence HalfPenny.

Thy Name, O! Chatham, (with some few more) is made, rare Instance, IMMORTAL by Defeat; and to thee—NEW HONOURS rise—from the RUINS of thy COUNTRY. While you live, never-fading Laurels, the just Reward of thy Virtue, Conduct, and Fidelity, shall crown thy hoary Head, and shade thy venerable Brow—And may thine and Britain’s ravished Eyes, behold thy FOES and Hers, for their TREACHERY and VILLAINY, dragged to EXECUTION, dressed and dishonoured in funeral ROSEMARY and the baleful YEW.

To the KING,


TO follow you regularly through every Step of a fourteen Years SHAMEFUL and INGLORIOUS Reign, would be a Task as Painful, as Disagreeable, and far exceed the Bounds of this Paper: But we are called upon by the Necessity of the Times, the Measures you are pursuing, by every Principle of Justice and Self-preservation, and by the Duty we owe to GOD and our COUNTRY, to declare our Sentiments (with a Freedom becoming of Englishmen), on some of those dreadful Transactions and Oppressions which this Kingdom has Edition: current; Page: [24] laboured under, since the Glory and Lustre of the Crown of England, was doomed to fade upon your Brow; and, to point out to you, Sir, your own critical and DANGEROUS Situation.

Sir, it is not your rotten Troop in the present House of Commons; it is not your venal, beggarly, pensioned Lords; it is not your polluted, canting, prostituted Bench of Bishops; it is not your whole set of abandoned Ministers; nor all your Army of Scotch Cut-throats, that can protect you from the Peoples Rage, when drove by your Oppressions, and till now unheard of Cruelties, to a State of Desperation.

The Day, we Fear, is not far Distant, when you will have Reason, too much Reason, to wish you had acted like a Father, and not like a Tyrant, when you will be Bound to curse those TRAITORS, those exalted Villains, whom now in the Face of Day, without a Blush, you can be Base enough to call your Friends: be assured, Sir, your Danger is great amidst all this fancied Security; and it will be impossible for them to preserve YOU from the just Resentment of an enraged, long abused, and much injured Nation: Should that Day ever come, but Heaven avert the Stroke, where can you hide yourself from the tenfold Vengeance, of a brave and mighty People, with Law, Justice, Heaven, and all its sacred Truths on their Side.

Then like Wounds that bleed afresh, will be brought to their Minds, your barbarous, and unprovoked MASSACRE, in St. Georges Fields, when Men and Women were indiscriminately and inhumanly Slaughtered, to gratify, what would have disgraced even your Footman; a PITIFUL REVENGE.1 Then Sir, they will remember with Horror and Indignation, the Letter of THANKS, sent from the Secretary at Edition: current; Page: [25] War by YOUR ORDER, to the Officer on Duty the 10th of May, 1768, (the Day of Carnage); and likewise your PENSIONING, and screening the Murderers from the Punishment of the Law. Then Sir, they will remember the horrid Plan laid at Brentford, for destroying the Right of Election; or in the most savage Manner, to take away the Lives of the Freeholders of Middlesex; which was (to make use of a word from your merciful royal Dictionary) EFFECTUALLY carried into Execution, and several People killed; to this Plan Sir, formed by Procter and your Minions, YOU must have been PRIVY, as the event afterwards sufficiently proved; Then Sir, they will remember, the mean, low, and criminal Subterfuge, you had Recourse to, to DISPENSE with the Laws, (and set aside the just Verdict of an HONEST JURY) to pardon those HIRED RUFFIANS, Balf and Mack Quirk,2 convicted upon the clearest Evidence of PREMEDITATED MURDER. Then, Sir, they will remember the insults they received, and the ignoble Answers you gave, to the Remonstrances and Petitions, delivered by them to the Throne, praying a Dissolution of Parliament; Nor will they forget, Sir, the infernal Plan for smuggling the present House of Commons, and destroying all the Rights of this free Country. In a Word, Sir, these and every other despotic and bloody Transaction of your Reign, will rise fresh in their Minds; if they should be drove by your Encouragement of Popery, your Persecutions, your Oppressions, Edition: current; Page: [26] your Violations of Justice, your Treachery, and your Weakness, into a fatal and unnatural CIVIL WAR in America; I say they will rise fresh in their Minds, and stimulate them to Deeds of Glory; nay, they may pursue with implacable Revenge the Author of all their Miseries.

The People, Sir, with a Candour and Indulgence peculiar to Englishmen, passed over the Injuries and Insults in the first Part of your Reign, or, kindly laid the blame at the Door of your Ministers; but it is now evident to the whole World, that there was a Plan formed by Lord Bute and yourself, either before, or, immediately after you came to the Crown, for subverting the British Constitution in Church and State; which to our Grief, with indefatigable pains and too much Success, Lord Butes Tools, and your infernal Minions, have carried into Execution; therefore, it no longer remains to determine who is now the greatest CRIMINAL in England.

Consider, Sir, if through the late and present iniquitous Measures, and an obstinate Resolution in your Majesty to pursue them, the SWORD is forced to be drawn in America, it cannot remain long unsheathed in England: we hope there is some Virtue HERE; and we entertain a better Opinion of our Countrymen, then to believe they are so far degenerated, as to TAMELY see a mercinary Army of Soldiers (who are at all Times a Terror to the peaceable Inhabitants of every free State) BUTCHER their BRETHREN and FELLOW SUBJECTS in America, because they are determined to defend their own Rights and the British Constitution; I say they never will TAMELY see that, without putting out a helping Hand, and sharing with them the GLORY of a decisive Victory over TYRANNY, and all the AGENTS of the infernal Monarch of the dark Regions of HELL, who would enslave the World.

Should you, Sir, still pursue the same tyrannical Measures only to gratify a mean vindictive Spirit, and be the Author of such dreadful Mischiefs; O! we shudder at the Thought: the People will then perhaps, treat you, Sir, with as little Ceremony, as little Respect, and as little Mercy, as you and your Minions have treated them; for Sir, whenever the State is convulsed by civil Commotions, and the Constitution totters to its Centre, the Throne of England must shake with it; a Crown will then be no SECURITY, and Edition: current; Page: [27] at one Stroke all the gaudy Trappings of Royalty may be laid in the Dust; in such a Time of dreadful Confusion and Slaughter; when the Son’s Weapon drinks the Father’s Blood, and we see a Ruffian’s Blade reeking from a Brother’s Heart: When Rage is burning in the Breasts of Englishmen, provoked by Wrongs not to be borne by Men; all Distinctions must cease, the common Safety and the Rights of Mankind, will be the only Objects in View; while the King and the Peasant, must share one and the same Fate, and perhaps fall undistinguished together.

Let these Things, Sir, be well weighed; tremble for the Event; drive those Traitors from your Breast who now surround you; let the Just and Honest have your Confidence, and once more make your People HAPPY, GREAT, and FREE; be not the Instrument of their Destruction; consider the solemn and sacred Oath you made at your Coronation, to protect your Subjects in ALL their Rights and Liberties, and the PROTESTANT Religion, as by Law established: Consider, Sir, what a Perversion of all Right and Justice that must be (besides the heinous Crime of PERJURY), when instead of being their PROTECTOR, you become their DESTROYER.

Your Plan, Sir, for bringing the Colonies by FORCE of ARMS into a State of Subjection to your WILL, is Cruel, Bloody, and (I hope) Impracticable; it is repugnant to every Principle of Humanity, Justice, sound Policy, and the natural Rights of Mankind; it is the foulest Disgrace to you, and will reflect eternal Infamy on your Reign and Memory, as the Sovereign and Father of a free People; it is such a Plan of encroaching Violence and lawless Power, as the Americans, never can, never ought, nor never will Submit to; it is such a Scheme for enslaving, or destroying the human Race, as every Man ought to execrate and condemn, and to oppose even till he Perish.

Men, Sir, at three thousand Miles Distance, must think it extremely hard to work, toil, and run Hazards; only to support the infamous Luxury of high pampered Lords, a rotten Court, and your Tribe of venal Senators, Minions, Pimps, and Parasites the Pests of Society; and to be taxed and mulct by them at their Pleasure: All Nature, Sir, revolts even at the Idea of such a State of human Misery.

Edition: current; Page: [28]

Force, Sir, can never be used effectually to answer the End, without destroying the Colonies themselves. Liberty and Encouragement are necessary to keep them together; and Violence will hinder both. Any Body of Troops considerable enough to awe them, keep them in Subjection, and under the Direction of a needy Scotch Governor, sent only to be an Instrument of Slaughter, and to make his Fortune; would soon put an End to planting, and leave the Country to you, Sir, and your merciless Plunderers only; and if it did not, they would starve the Inhabitants and eat up all the Profit of the Colonies.3 On the Contrary, a few prudent Laws, Sir, (but you seem to be a Stranger to Prudence, as well as to Justice and Humanity); and a little prudent Conduct, (that too, has been long despaired of by the Kingdom) would soon give us far the greatest Share of the Riches of ALL America; perhaps drive other Nations out of it, or, into our Colonies for Shelter.

If violent Methods be not used (at this Time) to prevent it, your Northern Colonies, Sir, must constantly increase in People, Wealth, and Power; their Inhabitants are considerably more than doubled since the Revolution; and in less than a Century, must become powerful States; and the more Powerful, the more People will flock thither: And, there are so many Exigencies in all States, so many foreign Wars, and domestic Disturbances, that these Colonies can seldom want Opportunities, if they watch for them, to do, what you, Sir, might be extremely Sorry for; throw off their Dependance on the Mother-Country: Therefore, Sir, it Edition: current; Page: [29] should be your first and greatest Care, that it shall never be their Interest to act AGAINST an Evil that can no otherwise be averted, than by keeping them fully employed in such Trades as will increase their own, as well as our Wealth; for, Sir, there is too much Reason to fear, if you don’t find Employment for them, they may find some for YOU: Withdraw then, Sir, from America, your armed Ruffians, and make a full RESTORATION of the People’s Rights; let them Tax themselves, and enjoy their Property unviolated by the Hand of Tyranny; thus, Sir, The subsequent part of your Reign, may yet be Happy and Glorious. May the Compact between you and the People be no more VIOLATED; may you be SPEEDILY reconciled to the just Demands of the Colonies: May Lord Bute, Lord Mansfield, Lord North, and all your Majesty’s infamous Minions, who would precipitate you and the Kingdom into Ruin, answer with their HEADS (and soon) for their horrid CRIMES; and may the SUCCESSION IN YOUR MAJESTY’s ROYAL HOUSE, AND THE RELIGION, LAWS, RIGHTS, AND LIBERTIES OF THE SUBJECT, go Hand in Hand down to all Posterity, until this Globe shall be reduced to its original Chaos, and Time be swallowed up in Eternity.

The Author of the Prophecy of Ruin is extremely sorry, he is again under the necessity of putting off the Publication of his Poem to a future Day; but the Public may rest assured, it will be Published some time in the Middle of March.

To the People of England and America.

Some Time in the middle of March will be published, Price 1s 6d. in Quarto, on a fine Paper and new Type,

  • The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

  • Ense velut Stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est,
  • Criminibus, tacita sudant Praecordia Culpa.
  • Juvenal.
Edition: current; Page: [30]
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilius drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the harden’d Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, Fleet Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, and by his appointment the Corner of Little Turnstile, High Holborn, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [31]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half penny.

Ye CONSPIRATORS against the LIBERTIES of Mankind at St. JAMES’s, in St. STEPHEN’s CHAPEL, the HOUSE of LORDS, or amongst the BENCH of SATANICAL BISHOPS; you must surely think there is no GOD to JUDGE, nor HELL to RECEIVE you; or, you could never be so far ABANDONED as to stain your HANDS, and consent to DYE the PLAINS of AMERICA with the INNOCENT BLOOD of her INHABITANTS.

Nero had such Instruments of Slaughter.

THE steady and uniform Perseverance in a regular Plan of DESPOTISM, since the Commencement of this Reign, makes it evident to the meanest Capacity, that a Design was formed, (and it has with too much Success been carried into Execution) for subverting the Religion, Laws, and Constitution of this Kingdom, and establish upon the Ruins of PUBLIC LIBERTY, an arbitrary System of Government: in a Word, the Destruction of this Kingdom will soon be effected by a Prince of the House of Brunswick.

Edition: current; Page: [32]

The BLOODY RESOLUTION has passed the House of Commons and the House of Lords to address our present HUMANE, GENTLE Sovereign, to give Directions for ENFORCING the cruel and unjust Edicts of the last Parliament against the Americans.1 His Majesty possessing Principles which nothing can equal but the GOODNESS of his Heart, will no doubt, give immediate Orders for carrying EFFECTUALLY into Execution the MASSACRE in America; especially as he is to be SUPPORTED in polluting the Earth with BLOOD, with the LIVES and FORTUNES of his faithful Butchers, the Lords and Commons; would to God they ONLY were to fall a Sacrifice in this unnatural civil War.

The Day of Trial is at Hand; it is Time to prove the Virtue and rouse the Spirit of the People of England; the Prospect is too dreadful, it is too melancholy to admit of farther Delay.

The Lord Mayor of London ought immediately to call a Common Hall for the Purpose of taking the Sense of his Fellow Citizens, at this ALARMING CRISIS, upon presenting a Remonstrance to the Throne; couched in Terms, that might do Honour to the City, as the First and most Powerful in the World, and to them as Men determined to be FREE; in Terms that might strike CONVICTION into his Majesty’s Breast; and TERROR into the Souls of his Minions: this is not a Time for Compliments, nor should Tyrants, or, the Instruments of Tyranny, ever be complimented.

The Merchants of London, it is to be hoped, and the whole commercial Interest of England, will exert themselves upon this great Occasion; by sending to the Throne spirited and pointed Remonstrances, worthy of Englishmen; by noble and generous SUBSCRIPTIONS, and in every Edition: current; Page: [33] other Manner, give all the RELIEF, and all the Assistance in their Power, to their oppressed and injured Fellow Subjects in America.2

Let them heartily join the Americans, and see whether TYRANNY and LAWLESS POWER, or, REASON, JUSTICE, HEAVEN, TRUTH, and LIBERTY, will prevail.

Let them, together with the Gentlemen of landed Property, who must greatly Suffer by this unnatural CIVIL WAR, make a glorious stand against the Enemies of PUBLIC FREEDOM, and the constitutional Rights of the Colonies; for, with the ruin of America, must be involved that of England.

Let them in plain Terms, declare their own Strength, and the POWER of the People, a Power, that has hitherto withstood the united Efforts of Fraud and Tyranny; a Power, to which all Kings have ever owed their Crowns; a Power, which raises them to a Throne; and when unworthy of their DELEGATED TRUST, can pull them down.

Let them declare to the World, they will never be so base and cowardly, as QUIETLY to see any Part of their Fellow Subjects, BUTCHERED, Edition: current; Page: [34] or ENSLAVED, either in England or America, to answer the Purpose of EXALTED Villainy; and by that Means, become the detested Instruments of their OWN DESTRUCTION.

Let them declare to the World, they are not yet ripe for SLAVERY, that their Forefathers made a noble Resistance, and obtained a decisive Victory over TYRANNY and LAWLESS POWER, when the Stuarts reigned; that they are determined to do THEMSELVES JUSTICE, and not to suffer any farther Attacks upon their FREEDOM, from the present Sovereign, who is exceedingly desirous, as well as ambitious, to destroy the Liberties of Mankind; but that they do INSIST upon a Restoration of their OWN violated Rights, and the Rights of British America.

Let them enter into an Association for the Preservation of their Lives, Rights, Liberties, and Privileges; and resolve at once to bring the whole Legion of public Traitors, who have wickedly entered into a Conspiracy to destroy the dear-bought Rights of this free Nation to condign Punishment, for their past and present diabolical Proceedings, which have already stained the Land with Blood, and threaten Destruction to the human Race.

A few spirited Resolutions from the City of London, and the whole Body of Merchants of England, would strike Terror into the Souls of those Miscreants, the Authors of these dreadful public Mischiefs.

The grand Principle of Self-preservation, which is the first and fundamental Law of Nature, calls aloud for such Exertions of public Spirit; the Security of the Nation depends upon it; Justice and the Preservation of our own, and the Lives of our fellow-Subjects in America demand it; the very being of the Constitution makes it necessary, and whatever is necessary to the public Safety, must be just.

The present Conspirators against the Peace and Happiness of Mankind, ought to know, that no Subterfuges, no knavish Subtilties, no Evasions, no Combinations, nor pretended Commissions, shall be able to screen or protect them from public Justice. They ought to know that the PEOPLE, can follow them thro’ all their Labyrinths, and doubling Meanders; a Power, confined by no Limitations but of public Justice, and Edition: current; Page: [35] the public Good; a Power that does not always follow Precedents, but makes them; a Power which has this for its Principle, that extraordinary and unprecedented Villainies; ought to have extraordinary and unprecedented Punishments.

TO THE Officers, Soldiers, and Seamen,

Who may be employed to butcher their Relations, Friends, and Fellow-Subjects in America.

You can neither be ignorant of, nor unacquainted with the arbitrary Steps, that the present King, supported by an abandoned Ministry, and a venal Set of prostituted Lords and Commons, is now persuing to overturn the sacred Constitution of the British Empire, which he had SWORN TO PRESERVE.

You are not, or will not long be ignorant that the King, the Lords and Commons, have, (to satiate their Revenge against a few Individuals) declared the whole People of America to be in a State of Rebellion, only because they have openly avowed their Resolution to support their Charters, Rights and Liberties, against the secret Machinations of designing Men who would destroy them: and you are fixed upon as the Instruments of their Destruction. However, I entertain too good an Opinion of you, to believe there is one TRUE ENGLISHMAN, who will undertake the BLOODY Work. Men without Fortunes, Principles or Connections, may indeed, handle their Arms in a desperate Cause, to oblige a Tyrant, or Monster in human Shape: But Men of Family and Fortune, or, of honest Principles, I hope could never be prevailed upon to sheath their Swords in the Bowels of their Countrymen. Englishmen, surely cannot be found to execute so diabolical a Deed, to imbrue their Hands in innocent Blood, and fight against their Friends and Country; Actions which must brand them with perpetual Marks of Reproach and Infamy.

Edition: current; Page: [36]

O! my Countrymen, let neither private Interest, nor Friendship; neither Relations, nor Connections; prevail with, or induce you to obey (as you must answer at the last Day, before the aweful Judge of the World, for the Blood that will be wantonly and cruelly Spilt) the murderous Orders of an inhuman Tyrant; who, to gratify his lust of Power, would lay waste the World. No, rather enter into a solemn League, and join with the rest of your Countrymen, to oppose the present Measures of Government planned for our RUIN.

When your Country calls, then stand forth and defend the Cause of Liberty, despise the Degeneracy of the Age, the Venality of the Times, and hand Freedom down to Posterity; that your Children may smiling bless, not curse your war-like Resolution. To die gloriously fighting for the Laws and Liberties of your Country, is honourable, and would deserve a Crown of Martyrdom; to die fighting against it, is Infamy; and you would for ever deserve the heaviest Curses and Execration.

I hope neither you nor the Irish have forgot the shameful Insults you have received from the King, ever since the Conclusion, of the last war; you have been despised, neglected, and treated with Contempt; while a Parcel of beggarly Scotchmen only, have been put into every Place of Profit and Trust, in the East and West Indies, in England and America, and the Preference has, of Honours and Promotions, been constantly given to those People, nay even to Rebels; and some who have served in the French Service.

Be assured, if you can be prevailed upon to butcher, or enslave your fellow-Subjects, and to set up an arbitrary Power on the Ruins of public Liberty, that your Subsistance would soon be reduced to the miserable Pittance of foreign Troops; and you with the surviving Subjects of England and America, be reduced to the miserable Condition of being ruled by an Army of Scotch Janizaries, assisted by Roman Catholics.

Let every English and Irish Officer, Soldier, and Seaman, seriously Weigh these things; and then if they are Valiant, Courageous, Magnanimous and Free, like their Forefathers; if they are True to their King and their Edition: current; Page: [37] Country; if they Value their Religion, Laws, Lives, Liberties, Families, and Posterity; no Consideration can prevail with them to engage against the Americans, in an Inhuman Bloody civil War.

Let every Man then who is really and truly a Protestant, who wishes well to his Country, and the Rights of Mankind; lay aside his Prejudices, and consider the Cause of America, and her Success in this Struggle for Freedom, as a Thing of the last Consequence to England, upon which our Salvation depends, for the present plan of Royal Despotism is a Plan of GENERAL RUIN. I say let us all SPEEDILY unite and endeavour to defend them from their open, and ourselves from our own secret and domestic Enemies, and if any are luke-warm in this great public Cause, at this Time of emminent Danger; let them be made an Example of TREACHERY and COWARDICE: that the present Generation may detest and abhor them, and Posterity declaim against and curse them, as unnatural Monsters, who would destroy the Human Race.

To the People of England and America.

Sometime in the middle of March will be published, Price 1s 6d. in Quarto, on a fine Paper and new Type,

  • The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

  • Ense velut Stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est,
  • Criminibus, tacita sudant Praecordia Culpa.
  • Juvenal.
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilius drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the harden’d Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.
Edition: current; Page: [38]

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, Fleet Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, and by his Appointment the Corner of Little Turnstile, High Holborn, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [39]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

Resistance to Tyrants and the Instruments of Tyranny is Justifiable, and Warranted, by all the Laws of God and Man.

To the PEOPLE.

AT a juncture like the Present, when the National reputation of BRITAIN, as well as her absolute Safety, stands tottering on the brink of Destruction; when LIBERTY and FREEDOM, the great Pillars of the Constitution, are, by Force and Fraud, undermined, and tumbling into Ruins; when the BLOODY Sword of Tyranny is drawn against America, and soon to be plunged into the Bowels of her innocent Inhabitants; when the present Sovereign, aided by a despisable Junto, the Rebel, out-cast, and refuse of Scotland, and a Parliament not returned by the free Suffrages of the People, are rioting with IMPUNITY in the Spoils of an insulted powerful Kingdom; when they, by cruel Oppression, have spread Terror and civil War, in every Part of the British Empire; when they have destroyed or suspended her Edition: current; Page: [40] Trade, and sapped the Credit of Public Security; when the most iniquitous and unjust Laws are Daily passed to curb the Spirit, and bind in Chains, the Hands of a BRAVE and FREE PEOPLE; when St. James’s is made the Slaughter House of America; when the Sovereign is become a national Executioner, and for a Scepter, carries a bloody Knife; when by a most Scandalous and Shameful profusion of the Public Money, we are hourly Robbed and Plundered, to answer all the Purposes of King-Craft and Villainy; When new Taxes are Daily imposed upon the People in time of Peace, to the almost intire Ruin of the State; when the Minions of Despotism are increasing the Land Forces, for the open and avowed Purpose of wading knee deep in Blood, through the Liberties of Britain; when the Protestant Religion is openly Subverted, and the British Subjects in Canada, deprived of those great Securities of their personal Liberty and Property, the HABEAUS CORPUS ACT, and Trial by JURIES; when a suspending, and dispensing Power is assumed by the Crown; when Opposition, to the most cruel and wanton Acts of LAWLESS POWER, is deemed REBELLION; when the Senators, designed the Protectors of the People, are become their Destroyers; when the appointed Guardians of Public Freedom, are become Base Apostates, and Conspirators against the Liberties of Mankind; when neither OATHS, nor CONSCIENCE, can bind the Sovereign or his Ministers; when both PUBLIC and PRIVATE JUSTICE is denied to a Subject, nay, to the whole Body of the People at Large; when our Lives are exposed to false Accusations, and our Persons to arbitrary Imprisonment, and heavy Fines; when the Judges before whom we are to stand upon Life and Death, and before whom all Cases concerning Liberty and Property, must be brought; too much devoted to the Will and Pleasure of the Crown, and Enemies to the natural Rights of Mankind; when Juries who are to decide our Fate, packed, bribed, or modeled to the pernicious Designs of a wicked and detestable Ministry; when every Post, Civil, Naval, and Military; is filled by Northern Flatterers and their Adherents, by Men of no Principles; by Parisites, Pimps, Catamites, and the Advocates for Arbitrary Power; when the People can see nothing but Misery and Slavery before their Eyes; when this Edition: current; Page: [41] vast and mighty Empire, the Admiration and envy of the World, is, through Corruption and Villainy, falling into RUINS.1

At such a Juncture as this, and under these dreadful and alarming Circumstances of experienced, and impending Danger, it becomes the Duty of every Englishman, to stand Forth to defend his Life, his Liberty, and his Property from Lawless Violence, and to save his Country from Perdition.

So highly did our Brave and Virtuous Ancestors, value and Esteem their Rights, Liberties, and Privileges, that they spared neither BLOOD nor Treasure in their Defence, when invaded, as they too often were, by some of our Kings, who, in the pursuit of Lawless Power, pulled down all the Fences of Liberty, and broke in, like the present Sovereign, upon the Constitution, so far, that the Lives, Liberties, and Properties, of the Subjects of this Realm, were Hourly in Danger, and many fell Sacrifices to Royal or ministerial Vengeance.

Then it was, that our generous Forefathers, nobly ASSOCIATED THEMSELVES in DEFENCE of their Inherent, and legal Rights, and made an offering of the best and choicest BLOOD in the Kingdom, to the Shrine of LIBERTY, that we, their Posterity, might be FREE and HAPPY. To them and the glorious Struggles they made, with Power, we owe all the Blessings we enjoy, and the English Constitution, our greatest Boast, and their greatest Glory.2

Edition: current; Page: [42]

It was in such Times as these, when our brave Progenitors behaved like Britons, with a true Patriot zeal, with which almost every Breast was fired, they spurned the Yoke, and broke the Chains that were prepared for them, letting their King and his Minions know, they would not Suffer him, nor them, to destroy their Birthrights, and dispense with the known Laws of the Land, by which they were resolved to be Governed, and not by his WILL, or any other LAWLESS POWER upon Earth.

Let us at this Time, in this Hour of eminent Danger, follow so bright and glorious an Example, by a well timed, noble Resistance, to the present Royal, and ministerial Plan, for SUBVERTING the Laws and Religion, and overturning the Constitution of the British Empire, in England and America; a Resistance that will secure Freedom to posterity, and immortal Honour to ourselves; the Field of GLORY is open before us; let us rouse from a State of Apathy, and Exert ourselves in a Manner becoming of Englishmen, worthy of Men who love LIBERTY, and deserve to be FREE. Let us shew to the World, we are not to be enslaved by One, nor by Five Thousand Tyrants: for the Sons of CRUELTY, CORRUPTION, and DESPOTISM, will persue their Bloody designs, with greater Vigour, and with all the unrelenting Malice of Barbarians, against our fellow Subjects in America, in proportion as we are TAME and ACQUIESCING; and if once they can succeed, through our BASENESS and COWARDICE, the Sword will be immediately turned against us, the sacred Constitution of our Empire dissolved, and we shall fall DESPISED, UNLAMENTED, and DETESTED, into the same horrible Gulph of ARBITRARY POWER.

Let us take Advantage of the present Opportunity, while our Resentments boil high, while every English Breast is fired with Indignation against those who are the Authors of all our Past and present Calamities, Edition: current; Page: [43] which now convulse the State to its CENTRE;—Let us by all proper, just, and legal Means, exemplary Punish the Parricides, and avowed Enemies of Mankind;—Let neither private Acquaintance, nor personal Alliance, stand between us and our DUTY to our COUNTRY;—Let all who have a common Interest in the Public Safety—join in common Measures to DEFEND the Public Safety;—Let us persue to disgrace, destruction, and even Death, all those who have brought this Ruin upon us, let them be ever so GREAT, or ever so MANY;—Let us Stamp, and deep engrave in Characters legible to all Europe at Present, and to all Posterity hereafter, what vengeance is due to CRIMES, which have no less Objects in View, than the RUIN OF NATIONS, and the DESTRUCTION OF MILLIONS;—Let us frustrate their Present desperate, and wicked Attempt to destroy America, by joining with our injured fellow Subjects, and bravely striking, one HONEST and BOLD Stroke to destroy them—Nay, although the Designs of the Conspirators, should be laid deep as the Centre, although they should raise HELL itself, and should fetch legions of Votaries from thence to avow their Proceedings, yet let us not leave the Pursuit till we have their HEADS and their ESTATES.

Hear Part of the Address of your injured, and oppressed fellow Subjects in America, to you, upon this Melancholy occasion, upon the dreadful Prospect of impending Ruin; then let every Englishman lay his Hand upon his Heart, and declare, whether he does not think they have been most CRUELLY TREATED, and whether he can in Justice, Conscience, and Humanity, draw the Sword against them; or whether he would not rather join with them, and endeavour to obtain a DECESSIVE VICTORY over TYRANNY, or fall Gloriously with the LIBERTIES of his Country. These are their Words.3

Edition: current; Page: [44]

“WHEN a Nation, led to greatness by the Hand of Liberty, and possessed of all the Glory that Heroism, Munificence, and Humanity can bestow, descends to the ungrateful task of forging Chains for her Friends and Children, and instead of giving Support to Freedom, turns Advocate for Slavery and Oppression, there is Reason to suspect she has either ceased to be Virtuous, or been extremely Negligent in the appointment of her Rulers.

“In almost every Age, in repeated Conflicts, in long and Bloody Wars, as well Civil as Foreign, against the many powerful Nations, against the open assaults of Enemies, and the more dangerous Treachery of Friends, have the Inhabitants of your Island, your Great and glorious Ancestors, maintained their Independance, and transmitted the Rights of Men and the blessings of Liberty to you their Posterity.

“Be not surprised, therefore, that we, who are Descendents from the same common Ancestors; that we, whose Forefathers participated in all the Rights, the Liberties, and the Constitution, you so justly Boast, and who have carefully conveyed the same fair Inheritance to us, guaranted by the plighted Faith of Government, and the most Solemn compacts with British Sovereigns, should refuse to surrender them to Men, who found their Claims on no principles of Reason, and who Prosecute them with a design, that by having our Lives and Property in their Power, they may with the grater Facility ENSLAVE YOU.

“The Cause of America is now the Object of universal Attention: it has at length become very Serious. This unhappy Country has not only been Oppressed, but Abused and Misrepresented; and the Duty we owe ourselves and Posterity, to your Interest, and the general Welfare of the British Empire, leads us to address you on this very important Subject.

“We call upon you yourselves, to witness our Loyalty and Attachment to the common Interest of the whole Empire: did we not, in the last War, Edition: current; Page: [45] add all the Strength of this vast Continent to the Force which repelled our common enemy? Did we not leave our native Shores, and meet Disease and Death, to promote the Success of the British Arms in Foreign Climates? Did you not thank us for our Zeal, and even Reimburse us large Sums of Money, which, you confessed, we had advanced beyond our Proportion, and far beyond our Abilities? You did.

“To what Causes, then, are we to attribute the sudden Change of Treatment, and that system of Slavery which was prepared for us at the restoration of Peace.

“Let Justice and Humanity cease to be the Boast of your Nation! consult your History, examine your History, examine your Records of former Transactions, nay turn to the Annals of the many arbitrary States and Kingdoms that surround you, and shew us a single Instance of Men being condemned to suffer for imputed Crimes, unheard, unquestioned, and without even the specious Formality of a Trial; and that too by Laws made expressly for the Purpose, and which had no Existence at the Time of the Fact committed. If it be difficult to reconcile these Proceedings to the Genius and Temper of your Laws and Constitution, the Task will become more arduous when we call upon our ministerial Enemies to justify, not only condemning men untried, and by hearsay, but involving the innocent in one common punishment with the Guilty, and for the Act of thirty or forty, to bring Poverty, Distress and Calamity on thirty thousand souls, and those not your Enemies, but your Friends, Brethren, and Fellow-Subjects.

“Admit that the Ministry, by the Powers of Britain, and the aid of our Roman Catholic neighbours, should be able to carry the point of taxation, and reduce us to a state of perfect humiliation and slavery. Such an enterprize would doubtless make some addition to your national debt, which already presses down your Liberties, and fills you with Pensioners and Placemen.—We presume, also, that your Commerce will somewhat be diminished. However, suppose you should prove victorious—in what Condition will you then be? What Advantages or what Laurels will you reap from such a Conquest?

“May not a Ministry with the same Armies enslave you—it may be said, you will cease to pay them—but remember the taxes from America, the Edition: current; Page: [46] Wealth, and we may add, the men, and particularly the Roman Catholics of this vast Continent, will then be in the Power of your Enemies—nor will you have any Reason to expect, that after making Slaves of us, many among us should refuse to assist in reducing you to the same abject State.

“Do not treat this as chimerical—Know that in less than half a century, the quit Rents reserved to the Crown, from the numberless Grants of this vast Continent, will pour large Streams of Wealth into the Royal Coffers, and if to this be added the Power of taxing America at Pleasure, the Crown will be rendered independant on you for Supplies, and will possess more Treasure than may be necessary to purchase the Remains of Liberty in your Island.—In a Word, take Care that you do not fall into the Pit that is preparing for us.

“We believe there is yet much VIRTUE, much JUSTICE and much public Spirit in the English Nation—To that Justice we now appeal. You have been told that we are seditious, impatient of Government, and desirous of Independency. Be assured that these are not Facts, but Calumnies—Permit us to be as free as yourselves, and we shall ever esteem a Union with you to be our greatest Glory and our greatest Happiness; we shall ever be ready to contribute all in our Power to the Welfare of the Empire—we shall consider your Enemies as our Enemies, and your Interest as our own.

“But if you are determined that your Ministers shall wantonly sport with the Rights of Mankind—If neither the Voice of Justice, the Dictates of the Law, the Principles of the Constitution, or the Suggestions of Humanity can restrain your Hands from shedding HUMAN BLOOD in such an impious Cause, we must then tell you, that we never will submit to be Hewers of Wood or Drawers of Water for any Ministry or Nation in the World.

“The People of England will soon have an Opportunity of declaring their Sentiments concerning our Cause. In their Piety, Generosity, and good Sense, we repose high Confidence; and cannot, upon a Review of past Events, be persuaded that they, the Defenders of true Religion, and the Assertors of the Rights of Mankind, will take Part against their affectionate Protestant Brethren in the Colonies, in Favour of our open and Edition: current; Page: [47] their own secret Enemies, whose Intrigues, for several Years past, have been wholly exercised in sapping the Foundations of civil and religious Liberty.”

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [48] Edition: current; Page: [49]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Halfpenny

Is there not some hidden Curse in the Stores of Heaven, Red with uncommon Wrath, to Blast the Man who Owes his Greatness to his Country’s Ruin.

To the Right Honourable LORD NORTH, First Lord of the Treasury, Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Ranger of Bushy Park, &c. &c.


WE know not which is most to be detested your Lordship’s PUSILLANIMITY, or your VILLAINY, such a Miscreant never before disgraced the Administration of any Country, nor the confidence of any King; one Day you are all Fire and Sword, Boston is to be laid in Ashes, and the Rivers of America are to run with the BLOOD of her Inhabitants; Ships are prepared, Troops embarked, and Officers appointed for the threatened Carnage; you no sooner find, the Edition: current; Page: [50] brave Americans are determined to resist your Instruments of Slaughter and to oppose the cruel Designs of a despotic Tyrant, to rob them of their Rights; than all the bravadoing, and all the blustering of your Lordship, is immediately softened into a Calm, and you Relax; FEAR seizes your dastardly Soul, and you sink beneath the Weight of accumulated Guilt.

One Day we hear of nothing but accusations, Proscriptions, Impeachments, and Bills of Attainder against the Patriots in America, and they are speedily to be apprehended, and to receive a Punishment due to their Crimes, due to Rebels; three Days do not elapse before this JUST and NOBLE resolution of your Lordship to bring those Traitors to a Trial is dropped, and lenient, or, no Steps are to be taken against them.

Another Day ALL the Colonies are in a state of REBELLION, and the last Advices received from America, you tell the House of Commons, were of a very alarming Nature, and such a daring Spirit of Resistance had manifested itself throughout the Continent, that it was now high time Parliament should adopt Measures for ENFORCING obedience to the late Acts, a Plan is no sooner proposed by you, but carried by a ROTTEN MAJORITY, for reducing them to a state of Subjection to your, and your Royal Master’s WILL; and Bloodshed and Slaughter stare them in the Face; they laugh at your impotent Malice, and with a spirited firmness becoming of Freemen, DARE you to the Stroke; when behold, your Threats, and the resolutions of your venal Troop, (I will not call it a British Senate) become like the Threats and Resolutions of a Society of Coal Porters, who declare Vengeance against another Body of Men, who will not comply with their UNLAWFUL IMPOSITIONS, but, FEAR the next Day without even the shadow of Justice on their side to carry their desperate Designs into execution.

The Motion you made, my Lord, in the House of Commons on Monday last, for a SUSPENSION of the several American Acts, till it is known WHICH of the Provinces will raise a REVENUE, and contribute to the Luxuries of the parent State, subject to the Controul of the British Parliament, is a Subterfuge too low, and too thinly disguised to deceive the Americans, or to impose upon the understanding of the meanest Capacity; it is evident to the World this is only a villainous Plan to divide Edition: current; Page: [51] them, who, while united together, may bid defiance to all your Lordship’s cunning fraud, force, and villainy.1 The Americans, my Lord, are too Sensible and too Brave to be drawn into any Trap, either of your, or, your Royal Master’s making, you may weave the Webb as artfully as you please, for their Destruction, and they will be sure to break it; their Cause is Just, ’tis the Cause of Heaven, and Built upon the solid foundation of TRUTH and LIBERTY, they will carefully watch over the sacred gifts of God, and never surrender them to you, nor any Power upon Earth, but with their Lives. You have found, my Lord, that your hostile Invasion, and all your Force and Violence would not Terrify them into a Compliance with your Measures, nor answer the infamous Design of making the King ABSOLUTE in America; and now you are determined to try whether by Fraud and Artifice you can effect your Purpose.

You have, my Lord, by the most cruel Oppressions, drove the Americans to a State of Desperation, you have destroyed their Charters, invaded their Rights, imposed Taxes contrary to every principle of Justice, and to every idea of Representation, and by blockading the Port of Boston, reduced near Thirty Thousand People in easy Circumstances, to a State of dependence upon the Charity and Benevolence of their Fellow-Subjects; and now, rare CONDESCENSION, a SUSPENSION, of the several American Acts, or in other Words, Ministerial Oppression and Villainy is to be granted them, provided they will raise a REVENUE in America, still subject to the CONTROUL of the King and Parliament in England: This Suspension Scheme, my Lord, will not do, the Americans will have a REPEAL of ALL the Edition: current; Page: [52] Acts they complain of, and a full restoration of all their CHARTERS, RIGHTS, LIBERTIES, and PREVILIGES, before they grant you a single Farthing, and then not subject to the controul of a Banditti of Rotten Members in St. Stephens Chapel, of your appointing, for where would be the difference, between their Taxing themselves, Subject to the Controul, and at the DISPOSAL of the King and Parliament, HERE; or of the House of Commons in England Taxing them in the first Instance, there would be none, my Lord, and they would still be in the same situation they are now; still subjects to the Will of the King, and the Corrupt influence of the Crown, this Scheme, my Lord, appears to me as ridiculous and absurd, as the Negative still vested in the Court of Aldermen, in the City of London, which gives a Power to a Majority of Twenty-Six, to set aside the Choice of Seven Thousand Liverymen, in the Election of their Mayors. Be assured, my Lord, this new Plan must fall to the Ground, with all your former ones in this Business; the Day of Trial is at Hand, the Americans will be firm, they will have a confirmation of all their Rights; they will have a redress of all their Grievances; they will levy their own Taxes, not Subject, to any controuling Power; and they will fix the Constitutional Liberty of America, upon a Foundation not be again shaken by YOU, nor any PUSILANIMOUS, WEAK, WICKED, or CRUEL TYRANT.

It is unnatural; but for a Moment, my Lord, suppose the Americans should come into your Proposals, or agree with the Terms of your Motion, how, my Lord, can you make Reparation for the Injuries England and America, has sustained, or will it in any Degree lessen your Villainy, or atone for your Crimes; what Compensation can you make for the Loss of our Trade, to the Amount of near three Millions? What Compensation can you make for robbing the Nation of near one Million and a half of Money, to carry on your execrable Designs against your fellow-Subjects in America? you can make none; your Head indeed would be a pleasing Spectacle upon Temple Bar, but the Loss of that, and your Estates, would never atone for a ten thousandth Part of your Crimes and Villainy; still it is to be hoped the Minority in the House of Commons, and the People will never leave you, till they have both, till you are made a public Example, and brought to condign Punishment.

Edition: current; Page: [53]

Every Measure, my Lord, of your Administration at home, has been cruel, arbitrary, and unconstitutional; and every Measure with Respect to foreign Affairs, has been weak, cowardly, absurd and ridiculous; unbecoming an English Minister, and only calculated to destroy the Honour and Interest of this Kingdom.

The Glory and Dignity of the British Nation, was never so infamously sacrificed both by you and the King, as in the Year 1770, by a scandalous secret Convention with Spain, concerning Faulkland’s Islands.

With Respect to domestic Affairs, you have endeavoured to erect the Sovereign into a despotic Tyrant; you have made him trample under Foot, all Laws, human and divine; you have made him destroy the Rights and Liberties of the People, in every Part of the British Empire. You have made it apparently his Interest to promote Divisions at home; you have obliged him to quit the GLORIOUS title of Father of his People, and debase himself into the Head of a Party, whom he has invested with an absolute Dominion over him, and whilst he monarch’s it in his own Closet, becomes contemptible in the Eyes of his Subjects, and the whole World; weak, timid, and irresolute; he deeply engages in all your Lordship’s infamous Measures, and the Rest of his Ministers; and it is for this Reason we see every Act of ministerial Villainy and Murder, sanctified by Royal Authority.

A Parody, for your Lordship’s Perusal, on the 3d Scene of the 5th Act of Richard the 3d.2

Enter North, from his Bed.

’Tis now the dead of Night, and half the World is in a lonely, solemn Darkness hung; yet I (so coy a Dame is sleep to me) with all the weary Courtship Edition: current; Page: [54] of my care-tired Thoughts, can’t Win her to my Arms; tho’ even the Stars do Wink, as ’twere with over-watching.—I’ll to my Bed, and once more try to sleep her into morning. [Lies down, a Groan is heard.

Ha! What means that dismal Voice? Sure ’tis the Echo of some yawning Grave, that teems with an untimely Ghost.—’Tis gone! ’twas but my Fancy, which ever, and anon, of late, conjures the People’s murmurs to my Ear—no matter what, I feel my Eyes grow heavy.—[Sleeps.

Enter the Ghost of Britannia.

Brit. Oh! thou whose unrelenting Thoughts, not all the hideous Terrors of thy Guilt can shake; whose Conscience, with thy Body, ever Sleeps—Sleep on; while I by Heaven’s high Ordinance, in Dreams of Horror wake thy frightful Soul: now give thy Thoughts to me; let them behold those gaping Wounds, which thy death-dealing Hand, from Time to Time, gave my anointed Body: now shall thy own devouring Conscience gnaw thy Heart, and terribly revenge my Murder.

Enter the Ghosts of those barbarously Murdered at Brentford, Boston, and in St. George’s Fields, in the merciful Reign of the present King.

Ghosts. North Dream on, and let the wand’ring Spirits of thy butchered Fellow-Subjects grate thine Ear! could not the cause wherein we were embarked; the common, open birthright of a Briton, persuade thy cruel Heart to spare our Lives? Oh! ’twas a cruel Deed! therefore alone, unpitying, unpitied shalt thou fall.

Enter the Ghost of the late Lord Chancellor.

Lord Chancellor. Could not the various wrongs thou didst thy Country’s Weal, in Camden, Granby, Wilkes,3 and many more, glut thy relentless Edition: current; Page: [55] Soul? but thou and Grafton must aim thy Dagger at my Life—yes at my Life, unfeeling Man! for could’st thou think that after quitting every claim to Honour, Truth, or Right, I’d longer bare my hated Load, of Infamy—Oh! no! the Grave could only save me from myself! Wake then in all the Hells of Guilt! and let that wild Despair, which now does prey upon thy mangled Thoughts, be to the World a terrible example. [Ghosts Vanish.

North. Spare me my Life!—I do repent—your Wrongs shall be redressed.—Hah! soft—’twas but a Dream, but then so terrible, it shakes my Soul; cold drops of Sweat hang on my trembling Flesh; my Blood grows chilly, and I freeze with Horror: O! Tyrant Conscience! how dost thou afflict me? Fain would I re-assume my Walk; was it not terrible retreating? Who is there?

Edition: current; Page: [56]

Enter Mungo, alias Jeremiah Dyson,4


’Tis I, my Lord,—the Morn is far advanced, and all your Friends are up, preparing for the House.


Oh! Mungo, I have had such Horrid Dreams!


Shadows! My Lord—below the Statesman’s heeding


Now, by my every hope—shadows to Night have struck more terror to the soul of North, than could the whole of ten minorities, armed all in proof and led by noisy Chatham.


Be more yourself, my Lord; consider, were it but known a Dream had frightened you, how would your animated Foes presume on it.


Perish that thought!—no—never be it said that Fate itself cou’d awe the soul of North.

  • Hence babbling Dreams you threaten here in vain
  • Conscience avaunt, North is himself again!
  • With this*, and with my gracious Sovereign’s ear,
  • I’ll act determined—free from ev’ry fear.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [57]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

Feb. 16, 1775

To the Right Honourable LORD APSLEY, Lord Chancellor of England.2

My Lord,

I Was a Bye-stander this Day, when your Lordship and the House of Lords decided the very important Cause of PHILIP THICKNESS, Appellant, and PETER LEIGH and Others, Respondents: and though unconnected with the Parties, and consequently uninterested in the Event, I must own, I was forcibly struck—by a Scene so NOVEL and unexpected.—I stood, my Lord, with silent Awe, at the Bar of Edition: current; Page: [58] that Tribunal, which I had ever been accustomed to consider—as the Last Refuge of INJURED JUSTICE.3—I expected to hear a Question of Law, of infinite Nicety, discussed with Wisdom, and decided with Integrity.—Judge then, my Lord, my Astonishment, when, instead of that Decency in Debate, which ought to be observed, even in the lowest Courts of Justice, and which I had ever thought, in a Peculiar manner, characteristic of the House of Lords, I saw Proceedings that would have disgraced a POLISH DIET!—Yes, my Lord, in all my Experience of Courts of Justice, I never saw Judges, so avowedly corrupt, so indecently profligate, as Your Lordship and Lord Denbigh!4—LORD CAMDEN delivered HIS Opinion on the Question, in an Argument, that will carry to the latest Times HIS FAME and Your Disgrace.

Your Lordship, in Answer to him, delivered your Sentiments, I cannot call them an Argument, because there was nothing that resembled a Chain of Reasoning; and indeed your Lordship seemed more to rely Edition: current; Page: [59] on the Letter you had received from Sir William De Grey,5 and the Conversation you said you had had with Sir Eardley Wilmot, and Sir Stafford Smythe, than on any Reasons you could advance in Support of your Decree!

When Lord Camden, with a Decency becoming the Occasion, and the Place in which he spoke, reminded your Lordship how improper it was for a Judge—deciding so nice and difficult a Question of Property in the highest Tribunal of the Kingdom—to talk of Opinions of Men, not Judges in that Court, who had given their Sentiments in Private, probably, without much Consideration of the Subject, most certainly, without hearing the Facts stated, and the Question discussed by Council—WHAT TREATMENT DID HE MEET WITH?Lord Denbigh’s Attack upon him was the Attack of a Ruffian, hired to carry through a profligate Measure, by assassinating every Man who should attempt Opposition.—Your Lordship’s Language was somewhat more decent:—it was the Language of Ignorance, delivered with that Insolence, which a weak and vain Man feels, confident in a corrupt Majority.

Has your Lordship still to learn, that the Opinion of a Judge, though delivered in the Course of a Cause in open Court, and handed down in Print; yet if it is on a Point NOT before Him, as a Judge, is never allowed to be cited even by Counsel in Argument? And wisely so established, my Lord: For the Law of this Country gives Credit to the Opinions of the Judges, only on those Points, which are necessarily brought before them in the Course of Judicial Proceedings. On these Points, when they have heard the Arguments of Counsel, they decide;—if erroneously, the Injured Party has his Remedy by Appeal;—if corruptly and iniquitously, the Decision of the Judge appears on the Record, and he is amenable to his Country’s Justice.—Is your Lordship ignorant that this is the Law? or can your Lordship say—or will any other Man say for you—that in Edition: current; Page: [60] the Course of his Attendance on Courts of Law, he ever before knew a Private Letter, and Private Conversation, adduced by a Judge, not as Arguments, furnishing Reasons for an Opinion, but as Authorities in Law, to warrant his Decision?—My Lord, I will defy your Lordship, with all your long List of Advisers, from the hollow-hearted Lord, who made you Chancellor, down to the lowest Driveller who feeds your Vanity with Flattery, to say, that such a Sight was ever before exhibited in a Court of Justice.

From the Existence of Courts of Law in this Island, no Man ever, before this Day, saw a private Letter produced, read, and relied on, as Authority by a Judge, pronouncing Judgment.—Are the Arguments of counsel Mockery? or, are they supposed to suggest Matter, to be weighed by those who are to decide?—The Judgement of your Lordship, and the House of Peers, this Day, was avowedly founded on the Authorities of Men, who had never heard the Question discussed by Counsel.—If this mode of deciding is to prevail in Courts of Justice, Arguments by Counsel are useless: Your Lordship can decide, without hearing them: Nothing more is requisite, than for your Lordship to write a Letter to some Friend: His Answer, read in Court by your Lordship, will stand in the Place both of Authority and Argument.—Is this the Way, in which Justice is to be dispensed to the Subject, in the Supreme Tribunals of the Country—the Chancery, and House of Lords?

O. Seats of TALBOT and of HARDWICK:6 from whence those GREAT and GOD-LIKE Men, with a pure Heart, and Wisdom more than human, shed on this happy Land the fragrant Dews of Justice,—from whence the vanquished Suitor was wont to retire, satisfied, by the Arguments he had heard, that he had been mistaken in his Claim—HOW IS YOUR GLORY FADED!—The Wretched Thing, who now fills the Place of your late bright Inhabitant, attempts not to give Reasons Edition: current; Page: [61] for his Decisions, but tells the Suitor in Plain Terms, that he decides the Cause, on the Authority of a Letter from one of his Friends, who had never heard the Facts openly stated, or an Argument from Council on the Subject!

My Lord, were I to tell a Man, bred up in the Courts of Talbot and of Hardwicke, that a Chancellor of this Country had decided a Question, on an Executory Devise, on the Authority of a Letter from Sir William De Grey, who had never heard an Argument on the Question—he would tell me, IT WAS A LYE—IT WAS IMPOSSIBLE TO BE TRUE;—It would be as repugnant to all his Ideas of a Chancellor’s Proceedings, as if I was to tell him, That on the first Day of the Term I had seen the Chancellor carried round Westminster-Hall in Bacchalian Triumph, the Train, Mace, and Purse, borne by three drunken Trolls picked out of a Brandy-shop at Temple-Bar.

My Lord, Men’s Minds are formed by what they have been accustomed to. Those who remember the polished Manners, and elegant Arguments, of former Chancellors, are shocked at your Lordship’s Brutal Decision: Sic volo, sic jubeo.7—My Lord, I do not use these Expressions as merely similar to your Lordship’s. I do aver, that since your Lordship has had the Custody of the Great Seal, I have heard you decide a Question at Law, argued by an eminent Council, in these very Words—I AM OF A DIFFERENT OPINION—I heard your Lordship decide in these Words—I HEARD THAT VERY DECISION REVERSED AS ERRONEOUS.

My Lord, your Lordship’s Conduct is become too glaringly despicable.—When the Great Seal had been taken from Lord Camden, for daring to speak his Sentiments in Parliament; and the ever-to-be-lamented Yorke8 had, by a virtuous Death, atoned too severely for the Weakness of an unguarded Moment, (for who can withstand the Persuasion of Kings, when they become Suitors?) the Gap was to be stopped—it was necessary that Edition: current; Page: [62] the Office of Chancellor should be filled;—your Lordship was pitched upon, by Lord Mansfield, as a Man who, being too weak to form Opinions of his own, would pay implicit Obedience of His Dictates, and, in the Character of the Great Law Officer, AVOW Legal Opinions, his Patron might be unwilling to risque.—This was the Ground on which your Lordship was made Chancellor;—The Nation saw it, and lamented, that an Office, of such infinite Importance, should be disposed of from such Motives, and to such a Man.—For, my Lord, do you think the World ever considered you as a Lawyer?—Those who had attended Westminster-Hall knew, that your Abilities as a Man, and your Knowledge as a Lawyer, were below Contempt.—They knew, that in the Character of an Advocate, you had never got 200 L. a Year in all the Courts of Westminster taken together:—They were astonished, when you were made a Judge;—but they were exasperated, when you were made Chancellor?—In the Discharge of the Duty of that Office, they saw that your Decisions were ever unsupported by Argument; from hence they were led to suspect, that your Decrees were made by Others.—My Lord, they suspected this: But they did not know it, till your Lordship, in the Debate of this Day, put the Matter beyond a Doubt:—You will say, perhaps, a Chancellor may ask the Assistance of those, whose Judgment he esteems.—True, my Lord; but then let him call on them in the Character of Assessors—that they may hear the Arguments of Counsel—that they may be answerable for the Doctrines they lay down—and, that the Suitor may know, by whose Opinion his Property is bound.

My Lord this is your Character; drawn with more Truth, than by those Sycophants, who tell you that you are greater a Chancellor than Hardwick, Talbot or Camden!—No Man ever doubted about your Head;—the Conduct of this Day has fixed Men’s Opinions of your Heart.—My Lord, it was a foul Proceeding.

It was a Black Day’s Work; Justice seemed in Eclipse:

The Suiter had seen with Grief, in what weak Hands the Great Seal was entrusted: but when he saw, that if your Ignorance led you to decide erroneously, a PACK’D HOUSE of PEERS might be brought together to sacrifice his Property to your Vanity, he was struck with Horror.—My Edition: current; Page: [63] Lord, the Nation will not bear it,—and after the Scene of this Day, your Lordship cannot hold the GREAT SEAL.


P.S. When the Decree was affirmed, there was not above five or six Lords in the House, besides Lords Camden and the present Chancellor.—Lord PAULET (to his Honour be it recorded) moved to have the Judges called in. This Motion was over-ruled, and he retired.—It was the Duke of Chandois, Lord Denbigh, Lord Cathcart, and Lord Galloway,10 who took upon themselves to decide a nice Question of Law, which ought to have been argued with Wisdom and Discretion, but which was debated with Passion, and decided by Party-Zeal.—In short, what raised the Chancellor, ruined the Suitor,—THE TIMES.

Note, When the House of Lords were met, to hear the Cause, a Message was sent to Lord Mansfield by the Chancellor, to know if he would attend,—but, the Chancellor very well knew, he would not attend:—He knew, that Edition: current; Page: [64] Lord Mansfield could not resist the Arguments of Lord Camden; and that he must concur with him in reversing the Decree:—Lord Mansfield therefore stayed in Westminster-Hall, to decide the Property of twenty-five Pounds, and neglected his Duty to attend, where Ten Thousand Pounds were at Stake, as well as the Honour of the Nation:—He well knew the honest Zeal of Lords Cathcart and Galloway, the Villainy of Lord Denbigh, and the Folly of the cajoled Duke of Chandois:11He knew that they would attend, constantly, to take Notes, in Order to form a Determination, they went into the House prepared for;—namely, To affirm the Decree,and do for Lord Mansfield what he durst not do himself.

Lord Mansfield’s personal Dislike to the Suitor has long been well known.—When he appeared at the Bar of the Kings Bench to receive Judgment for libelling Lord Orwell,12Lord Mansfield jumped from the Seat of Justice, and with Fury in his Eyes, and an Agitation of Body consonant thereto,—exclaimed Commit him! Commit him!—an Indecency of Behaviour which astonished the whole Court.

asterisks Since writing the above, I have seen a Letter from Sir William De Grey, in Answer to one from the Appellant, requesting to know whether the Letter read by your Lordship in the House of Peers, was read with his Privity?—Sir William De Grey’s Answer is in these Words:

William De Grey
Grey, William De

I am entirely a Stranger to what has been passing in the House of Lords, upon the Subject of your Letter, not knowing till a Day or two ago, that there was any Cause depending there in which you were interested; and then, only in casual Conversation.

I am, Sir, &c.
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On this Letter I will make but one Comment:—Either Sir William De Grey’s Answer to the Appellant contains an Untruth, or your Lordship has practised on the House of Peers an Imposition of the Blackest Dye.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, and by his appointment the Corner of Little Turnstile, Holborn, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [66] Edition: current; Page: [67]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

To the Lords Suffolk, Pomfret, Radnor, Apsley, and Sandwich.

    • How Glorious the Æra, thrice happy th’ Day,
    • When Private Int’rest to Public gives way,
    • When Bribes cannot tempt your Lordships to sell,
    • Th’ Birthright of Freemen to Tyrants of Hell.
    • How Glorious th’ Æra, thrice happy indeed,
    • When TRAITORS, and MINIONS are sentenc’d t’bleed,
    • When JUSTICE shall reign, and Heav’n’s great call,
    • The Proud Seed of Hell, Just Victims do fall.
My Lords,

YOU have a peculiar Claim to an Address from the Authors of the CRISIS, and it shall be our Business in this Paper, to preserve, if Possible, the preshiable INFAMY of your Names.

The Motion made by Lord Radnor, on Monday the 27th of February, concerning NUMBER III of the CRISIS, was Unjust and Vi—us, the Paper contains nothing but the most SACRED TRUTHS, and therefore could not be a false or scandalous Libel: the amendment of the Epithet Edition: current; Page: [68] Treasonable, proposed and supported by the Lords Pomfret, Suffolk, Apsley, and Sandwich was Infamous, and of a Piece with every other proceeding of the present Reign, and present Ministry; it shewed in a particular Manner, the BLOODY minded Disposition of prostituted Court-Lords, the instruments of MURDER and PUBLIC RUIN.1 The immaculate Lord Sandwich, insisted that the word Treasonable should stand Part of the Motion, as a proper Foundation for bringing the Author to exempliary and condign Punishment. Suppose, my Lords, this infamous Amendment to the Radnor Motion, had been carried, and it had stood a false, scandalous, and treasonable Libel, could the mere ipse dixit of a few venal Lords, make that Treason, which in the Literal or constructive Sense of the Word, was not so.

The Author of NUMBER III, is perfectly well acquainted with the Statute of Treasons, passed in the Reign of Edward the Third,2 and Edition: current; Page: [69] likewise with the various Expositions, and Interpretations of it; he well knew, the Paper was Written upon the true principles of the REVOLUTION, and that it could be justified by the Laws of the Land; he well knew, (though there is hardly any Villainy but what Court-Sycophants may do with ease) that it was not in the Power of Lord Mansfield, with all his Chicanery, with all his Artifice, with all his abuse of Law, with all his perversion of Justice, with all the aid of false Construction and forced Ineuendos, to bring it within the meaning of that Statute; he well knew the Disposition of the Sovereign and his Minions, and that nothing would, or can satiate Royal, Scotch, or Ministerial Revenge, but the BLOOD of those who oppose the present most horridly cruel, and most infamously wicked Measures of Government; and, my Lords, he well knew the shocking prostitution of Hereditary Peerage, and the bare-faced Treachery and Villainy of a purchased Majority in the House of Commons.

Has there not, my Lords, been INNOCENT BLOOD enough shed in this Reign, that your Lordships should still Thirst for more?

Why should your Lordships be so desirous of stopping every channel of Public information, the Infamy of your Actions are sufficiently known, and will be handed down to the last ages of Time, while your Names will stink in the Nostrils of Posterity.

The Statute of Treasons, my Lords, passed in the 25th Year of the Reign of Edward the Third, was an Act of vast importance to the Public Weal; for till then, there was hardly a Word spoke, or a Paper written, but what was deemed Treason; and the Parliament which passed it, was called Benedictum Parliamentum, the blessed Parliament.

The substance of this Statute is branched out by my Lord Cooke, into Six Heads, which we shall here give, with some Observations of our own, to shew your Lordships and the World, that NUMBER III of the CRISIS, is not within the meaning of either of these Heads, and that by your amended Motion, you designed to lay the ground Work of a Prosecution the most Cruel and Infamous, ever carried on in this Country, worse Edition: current; Page: [70] than those, which without Proof, or the Colour of Guilt, took away the Lives of the Great Lord Russel, and Algernon Sidney.3

The First Head concerning Death; by compassing, or imagining the Death of the King, Queen, or Prince, and declaring the same by some overt Deed. By killing or murdering the Chancellor, Treasurer, Justice of either Bench, Justices in Eyre, Justices of Assize, Justices of Oyer and Terminer, in their Places, during their Offices.

The Second is to Violate, that is, to carnally know the Queen, the King’s eldest Daughter unmarried, the Prince’s Wife.

The Third is, levying War against the King.

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The Fourth is, adhering to the King’s Enemies; within the Realm or without, and declaring the same by some Overt Act.

The Fifth is, counterfeiting the Great, the Privy Seal, or the King’s Coin.

The Sixth and Last, by bringing into this Realm, counterfeit Money, to the likeness of the King’s Coin.

First, To compass and imagine, is to contrive, design, or intend the Death of the King; but this must be declared by some Overt-Act, declaring by an OPEN Act, a design to depose or imprison the King, is an Overt-Act, to manifest the compassing his Death. I believe, my Lords, the Author of NUMBER III of the CRISIS, is not under the Predicament of this exposition.

Second, By the word King, is intended, 1. A King before his Coronation, as soon as ever the Crown descends upon him; for the Coronation is but a Ceremony. 2. A King de Facto, and not de Jure, is King within this Act, and Treason against him is Punishable, though the right Heir get the Crown.

Third, Note. It is very Strange, but in the printed Statute Books, it is there said, probably attainted, which is a gross Error; for the Words of the Record are, et de ceo, PROVABLEMENT Soit Attaint; And shall be thereof PROVABLY attaint: And it is amazing to me, that so gross a Mistake should be suffered, since my Lord Cooke has so expressly observed the Difference in these Words following. 3. Instu. Fol. 12. In this Branch, saith he, Four things are to be observed: 1. This Word (Provablement) Provably, that is, upon DIRECT and MANIFEST PROOF, not upon conjectural Presumptions, or Inferences, or strains of Wit, but upon GOOD and SUFFICIENT PROOF: and herein the Adverb (Provablement) Provably, hath great Force, and signifieth a DIRECT and PLAIN PROOF; and therefore the Offender must provably be attained, which Words are as Forcible as upon DIRECT and MANIFEST PROOF. Note, the Word is not Probably, for then commune Argumentum might have served; but the Word is provably be attainted. 2. This Word Attaint, necessarily implieth, that he be proceeded with, and attainted according to the due COURSE of LAW, and proceedings of Law, and not by Edition: current; Page: [72] ABSOLUTE POWER, or by other Means, as in former Times had been used. And therefore if a Man doth adhere to the Enemies of the King, or be Slain in open War against the King, or otherwise Die before the Attainder of Treason, he forfeiteth nothing, because (as that Act saith) he is not attained: wherein this Act hath altered that, which before this Act, in case of Treason, was taken for Law. And the Statute of 34 Ed. 3. saves nothing to the King but that which was in Esse, and partaining to the King at the making of that Act. And this appeareth by Ajudgment in Parliament, in Ann. 29. H. 6. that Jack Cade being Slain in open Rebellion, could no ways be punished, or Forfeit any thing, and therefore was attainted by that Act of High Treason. 3. Of open Deed, per apertum Factum,4 these Words strengthen the former exposition of (Provablement) an OVERT ACT must be alledged in every Indictment upon this Act, and PROVED. Compassing by bare Words, is not an Overt Act, as apppears by many temporary Statutes against it. But there must be some open Act, which must be manifestly proved. As if divers do conspire the Death of the King, and the Manner how, and thereupon provide Weapons, Powder, Poison, Harness, send Letters, and the like, for the execution of the Conspiracy. If a Subject conspire with a Foreign Prince, to invade the Realm by open hostility, and prepare for the same, by some Overt Act, this is a sufficient Overt Act for the Death of the King. 4thly. A Conspiracy is had to levy War, this is no Treason by this Act, untill it be levied, therefore it is no Overt Act, or manifest Proof of the compassing the Death of the King within this Act; for the Words are (de ceo &c. thereof) that is, of the compassing of the Death. The Wisdom of the Makers of this Law would not make bare Words to be Treason, seeing such Variance commonly among the Witnesses, about the same, as few of them agree together.

In the Preamble of the Statute of 1. Mar. (concerning the Repeal of certain Treasons declared after this Statute of 25. Edw. 3. and before that Edition: current; Page: [73] Time, and bringing all things to the Measures of this Statute) it was agreed by the whole Parliament, that Laws justly made for the Preservation of the Common Wealth, without extreme Punishment, are more often obeyed and kept, than Laws and Statutes made with great and extreme Punishments. And in special, such Laws and Statutes so made, whereby not only the ignorant, and rude unlearned People, but also learned and expert People, minding Honesty, are often Times trapped and snared, yea many Times for words only, without other Fact or Deed done or perpetrated. Therefore this Act of the 25. Ed. 3. doth provide that there must be an OVERT ACT. 5. As to Treason by levying War against the King, we must Note, that though conspiring or compassing to levy War, without a War, de Facto, be no Treason, yet if many conspire a War, and only some few actually levy it, all are Guilty of the Treason. Raising a Force to burn or throw down a particular Inclosure, is only a Riot, but if it had been to have gone from Town to Town, to throw down all Inclosures, or to change Religion, or the like, it were levying of War, because the intended Mischief is Public. Holding a Fort or Castle against the Kings Forces is levying War. 6. Counterfeiting the Great, or Privy Seal, is Treason; but it must be an actual Counterfeiting thereof, compassing to do it is no Treason: affixing the Great Seal by the Chancellor, without Warrant, is no Treason: fixing a New Great Seal to another Patent, is a great Misprison, but no Treason, being not counterfeiting within this Act: but Aiders and Consenters are within this Act. 7. Treason concerning Coin, is counterfeiting the King’s Coin; and this was Treason at Common Law, and Judgment only as of Petty Treason; but clipping, &c. being made Treason by other Statutes, the Judgment is to be Drawn, Hanged, and Quartered. Money here, extends only to the proper Money of this Realm. 8. As this Statute leaves all other doubtful Matters to be declared Treason in Parliament, but not to be punished as such, till so declared. So in succeeding King’s Reigns, abundance of other Matters were declared Treason, which being found very Grievous and Dangerous, by the Statute 1. Mar. it is inacted that thenceforth no Act, Deed, or Offence, being by Act of Parliament, or Statute, made Treason, Petty Treason, or Misprison of Treason, by Words, Writing, Ciphering, Deeds, or otherwise however, shall be taken, had, deemed, or Edition: current; Page: [74] adjudged to be High Treason, Petty Treason, or Misprison of Treason, but only such as be declared and expressed to be Treason, Petty Treason, or Misprison of Treason, by this Statute of 25. Ed.3.

Here we rest the Matter, my Lords, convinced the Author of NUMBER III, is not within the meaning of this Statute, nor any exposition of it, and that the Design of your Lordships in adding the Epithet Treasonable, was wicked, base, and infamous, and will be sure to secure to you the Contempt and Detestation of every Honest Man.

To the People of England and America.

On the 31st of March will be published, Price 1s 6d. in Quarto, on a fine Paper and new Type,

  • The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

  • Ense velut Stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est,
  • Criminibus, tacita sudant Praecordia Culpa.
  • Juvenal.
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilius drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the harden’d Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [75]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

The worst of all Tyranny is that established by Law.

To the KING.


YOU, Sir, ascended the Throne of these Realms with Advantages, which if properly improved, would have rendered your Reign, not only Glorious and Happy, but have made you the most powerful Monarch upon Earth; you might have kept the World in awe. Yet, O! shame to tell, though the Times demand it, you soon sacrificed your own Peace, the Tranquility, Honour, and Interest, of this Great and mighty Kingdom, to the Ambitious views, and Pernicious designs, of your infernal Minion Lord Bute, and his profligate, abandoned Adherents. Your Accession to the Throne, filled with Joy, the Breast of every Englishman; but alas, it was of short Duration, you soon convinced them of their Mistake, and the Compliments paid to your Understanding, the calm Hour of Reason soon convinced us, were ill founded.

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No sooner seated upon the Throne of this vast Empire, than you, like all other Kings, as well as Tyrants, made the People many and fair Promises: you told your Parliament, that the suppression of VICE and IMMORALITY, the Encouragement of TRADE and COMMERCE, and the preservation of PEACE and HARMONY amongst your People, should be the RULE of your Conduct, and your principal STUDY. How far you have kept your Word, the sacred Pen of Truth shall now declare.

Scarce seated in regal Dignity, before you drove from your Presence and Councils, by the Advice of your Scotch Favourite Lord Bute, every Man of HONOUR and INTEGRITY, who was valued for Love to his Country, and affection for your Family. You implicitly followed the Advice of your Northern Minion, and in their Room, took those only, who were the most Conspicuous for their Vices, and the most abandoned in Principle, these are FACTS, which Sandwich, Bute, Grafton,1 North, &c. will confirm.

These Men, you still continue to countenance, every scene of Iniquity, they have been concerned in, and every Act of Violence, Oppression, and Murder, they have committed, has been by you, tacitly approved, nay, Applauded. Adultery, Debauchery, and Divorces, are more frequent now, than in the corrupt and profligate Days of Charles the Second, these, Sir, prove incontestably, your religious Principles, and show how far you have suppressed VICE and IMMORALITY.

It will now be necessary to enquire how far you have encouraged TRADE and COMMERCE, was it by illegally imposing a STAMP Duty on the Americans, and taxing those Commodities which we supplied them with from this Country, which has stopped for near Six Years, a great Traffic between this Kingdom and the Colonies? Was it by suffering with the most shameful Impunity; the Portuguese to infringe upon the Privileges of the English Merchants at Lisbon, by Edition: current; Page: [77] which many were not only Injured, but almost totally Ruined? Was it by blocking up the Port, and destroying the Trade of the Town of Boston; thereby reducing to a state of Miserable dependence, more than 30,000 People, and giving a vital Stab to the whole Commerce of America?

We will now examine, Sir, how far you have preserved Peace and Harmony among your people; was it by providing for all the Beggarly Relations, and miserable Dependents, of your Scotch Minion, in preference to your English Subjects, especially those who were the chief Instruments of placing your Family upon the Throne? was it by ordering the late Lord Hallifax to issue an ILLEGAL Warrant for apprehending Mr. Wilkes? was it by rewarding that Delinquent after he had been found Guilty of a Breach of the English Laws? was it by screening your Minister behind the Throne, who violated the Rights of the Freeholders of England? Was it by rejecting the Petitions of your injured Subjects, and laughing at the Remonstrance presented to you from the first City in the World, the great Capital of the British Empire? Was it by NOT granting the Supplications of your People, and meanly referring those Petitions and Remonstrances to the Consideration of those very Men, whose Conduct they arraigned, and who were only the slavish Tools of your abandoned Ministers? Was it by sending Troops to Boston, depriving the People of their constitutional Rights, and contrary to all the Laws of this Free Country, enforcing the Tyrannical and oppressive Acts of your abandoned Parliament, with the SWORD, and laying America under a MILITARY GOVERNMENT?2 Was it by rewarding the Profligate, the Corrupt, and the Plunderers of their Country, with TITLES and HONOURS? Was it by a tame, dastardly Submission, to the Insults of the Spaniards, and a Edition: current; Page: [78] sacrifice of the Honour of the British Nation? These, Sir, are the Means you have made use of, for preserving Peace and Harmony among your People. But, Sir, the greatest Piece of Ministerial Villainy, and diabolical Cruelty, is still behind, it is now going through the House of Lords, and you, Sir, will soon be called upon to sign it; it is a Bill for restraining the American Fishery, and starving to Death, or driving to a state of Desperation, more than 300,000 People; consider, Sir, the fatal tendency of this Bill, determine no longer to be the Dupe of an abandoned set of Men, act from yourself, and refuse to sign an Act of Parliament, which must involve one Part of the Empire in a CIVIL WAR, and reduce Thousands of your Subjects to Poverty and Want. Let no Consideration prevail with you to execute a Deed, at the Idea of which, Humanity revolts; consider, Sir, how much this will raise the Indignation of your People HERE, when they find you are Destitute of the common Feelings of Humanity, and that you can be so easily prevailed upon to sacrifice your Subjects to the Cruel designs of your Ministers and Favourites. Give some Proof of a determined Resolution, no longer to persue Measures, which must end in the destruction of your Kingdoms, and perhaps, in the Ruin of your Family.3

Consider, Sir, how despisable you appear in the Eyes of the World, who, instead of Governing, suffer yourself to be Governed; who, instead of being a Leader, are Lead; who, instead of being a King, are nothing but a mere Cypher of State, while your Favourite and Ministers, were all the Appendages to Sovereignty.

It has long surprized the Kingdom, to think how you could bear such Wretches to prey upon you, to think how you could Suffer them to aggrandize Edition: current; Page: [79] themselves and Creatures, to possess the greatest Wealth, and to hold the first Offices in the Kingdom; and all this by imposing upon you, by making you break your Coronation-Oath; by making you violate every Promise you made with your People, and by filling your Ears with Lies, instead of Truth; how is it possible YOU can bear such Usage, which no sensible Man in a private Capacity can bear? and be the Dupe of the Vilest of the Creation, is so much beneath the Dignity of the Man who pretends to Govern, that it is astonishing such Fiends should prevail as they do; indeed they never could, unless you, Sir, like them, was inclined to establish an Arbitrary System of Government, and to set up your own WILL in opposition to the Laws of the Land.

Let me advise you, Sir, as you regard your own Prosperity, and the Welfare of your Kingdom, let me conjure you, as you value your own Safety, to consider well the fatal and ruinous Measures your Ministers are persuing, and you sanctifying with the Royal Authority; consider the Miserable, the unfortunate Situation of this Country; think on the Dangers which threaten it on every side; consider, we are now upon the Eve of a Civil War with our Colonies; from the present Face of things, it is inevitable; Trade and Commerce is at a stand, and all the Horrors of Wretchedness and Want, stare them in the Face; consider, Sir, the feelings of Men, reduced in the short space of a few Days, through wanton Acts of Power, from a state of Ease and Plenty, to that of Misery and Famine, I ask, is it possible for them to set Bounds to their Resentment; consider, Sir, the French and Spaniards will not long remain idle Spectators, when once they see us deeply engaged in a War with the Colonies. Throw off then your supine Indolence; awake from your Lethargic State; and if you will not be excited by the desire of doing GOOD, awake at least to a Sense of your OWN DANGER: think when the general Calamity comes on, who will be the Objects of Public hatred. Will not the Advisers of these destructive Measures, be the first Sacrifices to the popular Resentment. When the Merchants, Traders, and Manufacturers, are starving; when the whole Body of the People are in Misery and Distress, what Security, Sir, can you expect to find? Where will your Ministers conceal themselves; they will not be Safe even within the Walls of your Palace?

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Let these things, Sir, be well weighed, and no longer persuade yourself the People was made for you, and not you for them; no longer believe that you do not Govern for them but for yourself; that the People Live only to increase your Glory, or to furnish Matter for your Pleasure: for once, Sir, consider what you may do for them, and not what you may draw from them.

The People, Sir, think it to be a Crime of the first Magnitude, to convert that power to their Hurt, which was intended for their Good: and to obey a King, while he Acts in this Manner, and tramples under Foot all Laws, Divine and Human, argues not only a want of Sense in the highest Degree, but a want of Love for our Country, and a disregard for ourselves and Posterity.

Your Subjects, Sir, are under no Obligations to you, nor do they owe you any Allegiance, any longer than you continue to protect them, and make their Good, the chief end of your Government.4 When a Prince assumes to himself an extravagant, or an unlawful Power, then all Respect ceases; and he ceases to be a King: whilst he Protects and Preserves his People in their just Right, and Governs them by the Laws of the Land, all good Men will Love and Esteem him, and risk their Lives and Fortunes in his Service; but when he begins to invade their Liberties, to set up an Arbitrary Power, to impose unlawful Taxes, raise Forces, and make War upon his People, and suffer Foreign States Edition: current; Page: [81] to insult and injure them; then all Virtuous and Good Men, will detest and abhor him, and endeavour to remove him from a Throne, he unworthily fills.

In such cases, resistance is a Virtue, and to say that some should passively Suffer, lest by resisting they should cause the Ruin of many, is not a just Reason; because, in all Probability, they will be the Cause that Millions unborn, shall Live Happy and Free, and what can be a more Noble, Glorious, and Pious Motive for Suffering, than to transmit Liberty to Posterity: for this our Fathers bravely Fought, and many of them gloriously Fell, to preserve themselves and their descendants Free, and to destroy the Tyranny and Despotism of the Stuarts; and, Sir, let me beg you will reminder with Gratitude, to place your Family upon the Throne of the British Empire.5

The Author of this Paper, is far from advising violent Measures, upon every Error, or Misconduct of a Prince, but Resistance becomes a Duty, when they attempt the Ruin of the state, the subversion of Liberty, or overturning the Constitution of the Kingdom. It is notorious to the World, Sir, that your Ministers are Guilty of all these black, and deadly Crimes, and yet you Screen and Protect them; the Conclusions to be drawn from thence are obvious, and you, like Charles, may Live to see Your Favourites FALL.

Edition: current; Page: [82]

To the People of England and America.

On the 31st of March will be published, Price 1s 6d. in Quarto, on a fine Paper and new Type,

  • The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

  • Ense velut Stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est,
  • Criminibus, tacita sudant Praecordia Culpa.
  • Juvenal.
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilius drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the harden’d Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [83]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

LETTER II.: To the Right Honourable LORD APSLEY, Lord Chancellor of England.


I SHALL begin this letter to your Lordship, with an extract of a Letter, I addressed some Time since, to Lord Mansfield, because I knew how exactly your Lordship’s capacity is fitted, to think just as he thinks.

To him observed;—to your Lordship I repeat it.—

“That in matters of private Property, we see the same byass and Inclination, to depart from the decision of your Predecessors, which you certainly ought to receive, as evidence of Common Law: Instead of those certain positive Rules, by which the Judgement of a Court of Law, should invariably be determined; you have fondly introduced, your own unsettled notions, of equity, and substantial Justice. Decisions given upon such Principles, do not alarm the Public, so much as they ought; because the Consequence, and tendency of each particular instance, is not observed, or regarded.” But the Day is now come my Lord;—the Public Edition: current; Page: [84] have taken the Alarm;—your Lordships lawless Decision, in the court of Chancery, in the Cause of THICKNESS and LIEGE, and the Mannner in which it was corruptly Affirmed in the House of Lords, has shook the Kingdom to its very Basis.—Till that fatal Day my Lord, the supreme Tribunal of this Country, stood un-impeached and un-polluted, as to Matters of Private Property: But that was a Day in which a Deed was done, that even Lord Mansfield durst not become a Partisan.

That Day, my Lord, was only a grievous Day, to the Appellant: but it will prove a fatal Blow to BRITAIN.

When the Foundations of Justice, are so corrupted, that the first Law Officer in the Kingdom, shall dare to stand forth, in the highest Court of Judicature, knowing that he has assistant Judges, determined to support him in reading Letters containing the Opinions of Men, not Judges in that Court; in order to affirm a Decree unsupported by Argument, and in direct contradiction to a former and recent Judgment of that House; the Day cannot be very remote, when the Nation, the Laws and the Violators of them, will all be involved in one COMMON RUIN.

You Lordship is now brought to a greater TRIBUNAL, than even the House of Lords.

The Tribunal of the PUBLIC.

You stand Charged my Lord, at that awful Bar, with setting at Defiance, those Laws you were so shamefully appointed to support, in order to confirm a wicked Decree, without Law to sustain it, or an Argument to give even a Colour to shade it. You did it my Lord, by the assistance, of that BUCKHORE BULLY, Lord Denbigh, who assassinated Justice, and stifled every Idea of Honor, or Humanity; till he had driven every honest Man, but LORD CAMDEN, out of the House! He, it is true, was not to be menaced from his Duty, by the grossest Language: nor frightened from his Post, by the foulest Fiend who ever appeared in human form.

Edition: current; Page: [85]

Are you not afraid, my Lord, to lie down in your Bed, knowing—for you do know it; that you have sacrificed a whole Family to your Vanity, and thereby ruined a Gentleman, who has eight Children; the Eldest of whom, is next Heir, to a Seat in that House, you have so openly dishonoured, by plundering his Father, and Family, of their legal Property.

I have seen, my Lord, a Copy of this Gentlemans Letter, written to his Eldest Son, now at Giberalter, the Day after he was sacrificed at the Altar of Ministerial Justice.

In that pathetic Letter, my Lord, the highly injured, and deeply afflicted Father, after informing his Son with the foul doings of your Lordship, and your wicked Coadjutors,—adds;

“And now my dear Son, let me call upon you, as your affectionate Father, and as your faithful Friend, (for be assured I am both) never to enter the House of Lords, without casting your Eyes about you, and saying; IN THIS HOUSE MY FATHER WAS DEFRAUDED OF TEN THOUSAND POUNDS: and if ever you should be called to sit in Judgement there, never take your Seat in it, without looking up to Heaven, and calling upon GOD, in a short Prayer; to enable you upon every Occasion, to divest yourself of all Party-Zeal; all personal Pique; all private Resentment; and so to enlighten your Mind, and direct your Heart, that in all you say, or do, it may be conformable to that Godlike precept, of doing, as you would be done by.—If you do not this; then, to GOD, I offer up this, my fervent Prayer.—That you may never have any Voice where Justice ought to be Administered.”

Can your Lordship sustain the horrid Reflection, of the Deed you have done? (OF THAT Black Day’s Work!) Can the soothing gentle manners of that flattering low born Perrin, or the Smiles of your obsequious Register, divert you from feeling the most pungent Remorse? or do they, by telling you, how much they approve your Decree, make your pliant Mind easy? My Lord, I know they tell you so, but I will tell you, my Lord, that they durst not say so, to any LAWYER.

Edition: current; Page: [86]

There is but one Opinion among them, and that is, (you shall hear it my Lord, while Junius can hold a Pen, and you the Seals) That Lord Mansfield singled your Lordship out, as a vain, weak, and wicked Wretch; to support the same false, and unsettled Doctrines in the Court of Chancery, which he has so long, and so shamefully practised, in the Court of King’s Bench; and which he has Address enough to give sanction to, even without appearing in Person, to Appeals in the House of Lords.

When Lord Camden, with that gentleness of Manners, which ever accompanies solid Sense, and unshaken Integrity; told your Lordship, that no Mans Opinion, however high his Station, or however great his Abilities, if not a Judge in that Court, could be produced or Read, lest it should influence any of the Lords in their Judgments; you had the Boldness to stand forth, and casting down your Hat, with which you ought to have hid your Face;—you persisted in reading Sir William De Grey’s Letter; because your Bully, Lord Denbigh, said he would Read another to the same Purpose, if he had it.

Sir William De Grey’s Letter was then Read by your Lordship! his Opinion it seems, coincided with the Duke of Chandoiss, Lord Denbighs, and the two Scotch Lords, who sat for Lord Mansfield.

By these worthy Peers, my Lord, and Two silent Bishops, your Lordship’s (I mean Sir William De Greys) Decree, was affirmed, without a Division!

The Weak and Feeble efforts of Lord Camden, were over-powered, by your Lordships great Abilities; and nobly sustained by Lord Denbigh, and your other auxilliary Troops.

That Sir William De Grey’s detection, has produced in him, both Shame and Fear, is very obvious; for he never suspected you would so openly Publish his secret Instructions; as his Letter to the Appellant THICKNESS, will clearly Evince; and I make no Doubt, if I can prevail upon your Lordship, to attend to what the World thinks, and to understand what I say, you will be equally ashamed;—though I confess, not equally Criminal, with Sir William De Grey.—I say not equally Criminal, my Lord; for God forbid I should think the Crimes of so contemptable a Wretch as your Lordship, are equal to those of a Man as capable of Tortureing, Edition: current; Page: [87] at once, the Laws; and involving them, and a whole Family, in one common Ruin, as even Lord Mansfield himself.

William De Grey
Grey, William De
Februrary 21, 1775
Philip Thickness
Thickness, Philip

Copy of Sir William De Grey’s Letter, to PHILIP THICKNESS, Esq.


I Am very Sorry that you press me so much to speak more explicitly upon the Subject of your Letter.

I do not think that I can, with Propriety, give an Answer to the Question you are pleased to ask me.

I am, Sir,
your most Obedient,
humble Servant,

In a former Paper (No. VII.) I gave your Lordship a Copy of Sir William De Grey’s first prevaricating Letter, to the Appellant Thickness; on that Letter I made but one Comment; on this, I shall, at present, make only one other: either Sir William De Grey (I will not blot my Paper with calling him a Chief Justice) cannot Support Lord Mansfields Decree, and is ashamed to repeat your Lordships unmeaning Jargon, about substantive Gifts; or, he has received farther Orders.

I shall conclude this Letter to your Lordship, by observing, that there are still a few People, disposed to think Favorably of you; and to impute the black Part of this Transaction, to Sir William De Grey; because they confess the Weakness of your Head, and Lament, as a National Misfortune; that a Man of such contemptible Abilities, as your Lordship’s, and at such a time too, should disgrace the British Nation; in holding the highest Law-Department in it; without Talents to acquit yourself with common Decency, even in the Lowest; but some Men are still, willing to hope you are Honest.

Now, my Lord, for their Sake, and for your own also; either Answer the following Question, fairly, and openly, or for Ever decline holding out Edition: current; Page: [88] Lights to dazzle the World with false Marks of your Virtue or Integrity. Would the selling a Living to Dr. Dodd, or his Buying it of you, have been Half so Criminal, as what you are now charged with?

Did not your late deceased Brother, Mr. Benjamin Bathurst, keep his Money, when he had any, at Messrs. Hoares, in Fleet-Street?1 And did he not frequently over draw, on that very respectable House? My Lord he did;—you know he did: and did not you, his Executor, when you settled his Affairs, and possessed his Property, refuse to allow that House, a Sum of Money, your necessitious Brother, had over-drawn upon it, under the Shameful, Shameful! did I say?—under the Infamous pretence, that they could not recover it.—The Time being lapsed!

If this be true my Lord, and Facts you know are obstinate things. The World will then be as fully satisfied about the rectitude of your Heart, as they have always been about the extent of your Genius. They will then all be of one Mind, as to your Lordship, whatever they think of


I never yet knew a Man perfectly Sober, taking Pains to convince every Man he met, that he was so; but a drunken Man is always acting the Part of a Sober one: when you rung the Alarum about Dr. Dodd,2 I violently suspected YOU, and soberly set you down for the Man, all the World will now believe you to be. And therefore I must repeat what I said before, the Nation will no longer bear with you; your Lordship cannot after such FOUL PROCEEDINGS, HOLD THE GREAT SEAL.

Edition: current; Page: [89]

asterisks CAMBYSES,3 King of Persia, finding that his CHIEF JUSTICE, Sisamnes, had Pronounced an unjust Sentence, caused him to be Executed and Flayed, and with his Skin, covered the common Seat of Justice; then constituted Otanes his Son, Judge in his room, he sat My Lord upon his Fathers Skin; which probably put him in mind of his own: And Perrin will make the application for your Lordship, and if he is not ashamed, remind your Lordship, of the Fate of the two time serving Judges, EPSOM and DUDLEY, who were hanged in the Reign of Henry the 7th—of this Transaction, one of the greatest Lawyers and most upright Judges this Nation ever was blest with, makes this remarkable Epiphonema.

“Qui eorum vestigus insistunt, eorum Exitus prehorres cant.4

“Those that dare tread in their Steps, let them dread, or expect, the same dismal end.”

In my next I shall lay before the Public some farther traits of your Lordships public and private Life, for be assured I will never drop my Attention to you, while you continue to hold the Seals.

☞ The Public are desired to observe, the cunning of that most artful, as well as most wicked of Men, LORD MANSFIELD. His Lordship first planned the affirming the Decree, made by his Chan cellor in the above-Cause, in order to reak his private Vengeance on Edition: current; Page: [90] THICKNESS, and then, in a Matter in which he was totally indifferent about the Issue, he affects to correct Lords L.D. SPENCER,5 and DENBIGH, for Interferring in nice points of Law.—This repremand, was taken in good Part,—the two Lords were instantly convinced of their Error. They made proper and public Acknowledgement, of their ignorance in the Tythe Cause; but Lord Denbighs Villainy in the former Cause, is to pass unnoticed.


On the 3d. Day of April, will be Published, (Price 1s. 6d.)

The Prophecy of Ruin, a Poem.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [91]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

THIS Country is now reduced to a Situation really Degrading and Deplorable, through the strange Obstinacy and weak Prejudices of the King, who is determined, even at the risk of his own SAFETY, the Preservation of the Kingdom, and contrary to the united voice of his People, to encourage and protect an abandoned set of Men in the DESTRUCTION of that Constitution, he was Sworn to SUPPORT and DEFEND.

History fatally informs us, that the English have been driven to extremes, by Causes of less Moment than those, which have shaken this Kingdom during the present Reign.

Since the last stupendous Revolution, it has been generally believed, that the nature of our Constitution, became clearly ascertained, and fixt on Firmer and more lasting Principles, than it had known before that glorious Æra; at least the obtaining these Ends, as well as redressing Grievances, are acknowledged to be the Motives to the transactions of those Times.1 For had the exorbitant Power of the Crown been left unlimitted Edition: current; Page: [92] and unsettled, as before that event, and the Liberties and Privileges of the Subjects of England, in the same undecided State; it would have been only to change the Name of Masters, and not the Nature of their Sovereignty. And, if instead of removing the Causes of our Sufferings, and fixing our Rights and Liberties, we then gave to a House of Commons, an unlimited Power to dispose of the last according to their Inclination; it was only changing the Possessors of Arbitrary Power, by granting to a PROSTITUTED set of Representitives what was denied the King; and thus this illustrious Action of the Revolution, must appear to be the result of Faction, and aversion to one Interest, or unwarrantable Zeal for another. In what Manner can a Nation be more settled in its Freedom, by transferring ARBITRARY POWER from one Part of the Constitution to another.

It cannot be denied, but that the Laws, which were then enacted to establish upon a Foundation not to be again Shaken, the Freedom of the English Nation, and the Liberties of the People ought to be considered, as Unalterable, the very Basis and Boundary of the King’s Prerogative, and the Rights of Englishmen, something in the Government like the Center in the Earth, the fixt Point, round which all Things move and to which they tend.

Those Acts which were made at the Revolution, relative to the Constitution, such as the BILL of RIGHTS, and afterwards in Consequence of it THE ACT OF SETTLEMENT,2 which may be justly deemed the compact Edition: current; Page: [93] between the House of Hanover and the People of England, and which was preserved Inviolate, till broken by the unhallowed Hands of the Present SOVEREIGN and his Ministers; are undoubtedly of a Nature more sacred than those which established a Turnpike Road.

Those Acts founded on our former Rights in MAGNA CHARTA, ought to be considered as the essential Authority by which the House of Commons exists, than Laws which a Parliament may Abrogate, through pure Inclination to indulge a King, or his Ministers, to make them Despotic, and the People Miserable; for it must appear strangely absurd in a Constitution, that the Representatives of the People who form a third Part of it, should be Authorised by them to destroy their Liberties, and thereby exclude them from the Rights which they possess in the Government of the Kingdom? Besides, it is contrary to the very Idea of a free State, that a People should have given a Power of sacrificing their Privileges, to Men chosen the Guardians of them.

Something must exist in a FREE STATE, which no Part of it can be authorised to alter or destroy, otherwise the Idea of a Constitution cannot Subsist; for unless we allow the Freeholders and Electors of GREAT BRITAIN to be superior to a House of Commons, we grant to them an ABSOLUTE POWER, a Power inconsistent with the Notion of a FREE PEOPLE, and destructive of the Principles of a MIXED GOVERNMENT.

Should it be acknowledged, that, though the Commons have exercised a power of annihilating many Privileges and Rights, belonging to the People, and, that they possess no legal Title to it; then all Laws subversive of Magna Charta, the Bill of Rights, act of Settlement, and spirit of the Constitution, are an excess of their Authority, and a Violation of their Trust; for which the present INFAMOUS PARLIAMENT, ought not only to be dissolved, but every MEMBER who visibly engaged in the Destruction of the Peoples Rights, should suffer DEATH, together with those Hellish MINISTERS who formed a design of enslaving the People; and it must be equally Just, as well as Necessary, to call to a strict Account the FIRST MAGISTRATE, who could be base enough to encourage the Destruction of our LIBERTIES and a SUBVERSION Edition: current; Page: [94] of the noblest Constitution in the World; as an Example to future Kings and Ministers.

If any Ministerial Hireling should assert that our Representatives after the Hour of Election, are no longer answerable for their Conduct, and are legally invested with Authority to Destory our Rights and Liberties at their Pleasure; then, what did King James do more than this by his Prerogative? and of what Advantage has the Revolution proved to us, if Subverting the Constitution be legally placed in the Hands of the Representatives? in what Sense does the Idea of a Free State, or the Liberty of the PEOPLE exist, when it depends upon nothing more permanent or established, than the vague, rapacious, or interested inclination of a Majority of FIVE HUNDRED and FIFTY EIGHT MEN, open to the insidious Attacks of a WEAK, or DESIGNING PRINCE, and his MINISTERS? surely it will be granted, that whether King, or Minister, who by undue influence should prevail in passing Laws subversive of the Statutes before mentioned, must be deemed an Offender against the most sacred of all Human Enjoyments, Liberty and the Constitution of his Country, and equally Criminal with JAMES THE SECOND and his Ministers.

The whole presumptive Title a Parliament can pretend to have of disposing of our RIGHTS and PREVILEGES can be but PREROGATIVE, which in many instances has been illegally carried beyond the Limits of Liberty and the Constitution. It is therefore necessary we should recur to the Spirit of the Constitution with the strictest Rigour and Perseverance.

The only Reason that can be given, why our Forefathers in the ancient Fundamental Statutes of the Realm, have delivered nothing verbally explicit on this Head; of limiting the Power of their Representatives, derives its Origin from the same Cause that the ROMANS had no Laws against Parricide: they never conceived that the thought of BETRAYING or SELLING a PEOPLES LIBERTIES, any more than MURDERING a FATHER could enter the Human Heart: they never imagined that the Representative could ever possess an Interest distinct from that of his Constituent, or that pecuniary Advantage could outweigh the Public good in his Breast: they did not foresee, that MINISTERS might Edition: current; Page: [95] have Occasion to OPPRESS US, for the Gratification of a WEAK or WICKED PRINCE; or that ENGLISHMEN no longer animated by the Soul of Public Prosperity, might Degenerate into granting OPPRESSIVE TAXES, till the NATION would be brought within ONE STEP of RUIN: Or that Laws essential to the Establishment of Freedom and Security of the State, could be made to burst at the Mandate of a Minister, by the Breach of a Majority of Five Hundred and Fifty Eight Men.

When the Representatives of the People Act contrary to the very Elements of the Constitution, betray and give up the RIGHTS, PRIVILEGES, and LIBERTIES of the PEOPLE, though nothing in the Fundamental Statutes literally prohibit so ignominious a Behaviour; the very Nature of their Station, the innate sense of Right, and Original Spirit of Government, directly contradict all possibility of their having Title for such proceedings; and whenever it is done, it is an unjust and wanton Exertion of Power, and not of Authority: add to this dreadful and heinous Crime the indignant and humiliating Consideration, that our Equals whom we chuse to save, have sold us like our Cattle to a WEAK (not to say worse) KING, and his accursed MINISTERS, who have paid our Betrayers with a Part of that Money which was most unjustly levied on us, not to Answer the NECESSITY of Government, but for the most Infamous and Villainous Purposes.

The Particulars mentioned in the Bill of Rights, at the Revolution, were then considered as so many Violations committed by King James, on the Previleges of the People, and necessary to be remedied, for the sake of securing our Religion, and reestablishing Liberty and the Constitution.

The Grievances at that Time complained of against the Sovereign, had their Foundation in Justice and the Rights of the People and the redressing them in the Nature of the Constitution: otherwise, by what Arguments could be assigned a Cause of Complaint against the Prince on the Throne or preserve those Men who accomplished the Revolution from the imputation of Traitors and Rebels to their King.

They considered the Constitution as the primary Object of an Englishman; and the King but as the Secondary; who by his attempts towards Despotism, became a Rebel against this superior Power. They justly Edition: current; Page: [96] reasoned, that as the People, who make a Third of the Constitution, are deemed Traitors, for plotting or attempting the life of, or taking up Arms against the King, who forms another Third of the Constitution, and doomed to Death in consequence of such Behaviour; in like Manner King JAMES rebelled against two Thirds of the Government, by attempting to subvert their Religion and Liberties: for our Constitution, supposes, that each Part of it has a Right to be preserved; that Two are more than One; and the Happiness of a whole PEOPLE to be preserved, in preference to the Ambition or pernicious Passion or Designs of a King.

Shall then the present Sovereign and his Ministers be exempted from a strict and nice inquiry into their Conduct, because they have effected in one Method, the very Despotism which was opposed in JAMES, who was deservedly drove into Exile, for attempting it in another. Forbid it Heaven! and every Thing that is Dear to ENGLISHMEN.

To the PUBLIC.

The POEM called the PROPHECY of RUIN, repeatedly advertised to be published, in Quarto, Price 1S 6d. the Author has been unavoidably obliged to postpone from Time to Time, through a severe Illness; in order therefore to make some Compensation to the Public, for the Trouble and various Disappointments they have met with, the ENTIRE POEM will be given next Friday Noon, in No.12. of the CRISIS, containing Three SHEETS in FOLIO, at the reduced Price of 6d.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [97]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Six Pence.

  • Ense velut stricto, quoties Lucilius ardens
  • Infremuit, rubet Auditor cui frigida Mens est.
  • Criminibus, tacita sudant Pracordia Culpa.1
  • Juvenal.
  • Sharp as a Sword Lucilus drew his Pen,
  • And struck with panic Terror guilty Men,
  • At his just Strokes the hardend Wretch would start,
  • Feel the cold Sweat, and tremble at the Heart.
    • The prophecy of Ruin, A POEM

    • SHOULD e’re a Prince the British Empire sway,
    • (And I be doom’d by Heav’n to see the day)
    • Who quite unmindful of that glorious state
    • To which he’s rais’d, not by desert, but fate;
    • Should he be base, be cruel, and unjust,
    • Edition: current; Page: [98]
    • False to his friends. unworthy that great trust;
    • Should he, unmindful of the good that springs
    • From true royalty, and true patriot Kings;
    • By oppression (destroying like a flood)
    • Cause civil war, and fill the land with blood;
    • Should he rebel ’gainst freedom, law, and right,
    • And laugh at truths which honest men should write
    • With fair intent, write with no other view,
    • But to save him, and save their country too;
    • Such deeds as these, would fire my soul with rage,
    • And make me e’en against my safety, wage
    • War with vill’ny, and stamp the tyrants crimes,
    • That he might live and stink to after-times.
    • Thrice happy, now, when evry blessing springs
    • From GEORGE the THIRD; we boast the BEST of Kings.
    • Curs’d be the wretch who would support a plan,
    • Which must destroy the natural rights of man;
    • Perish the wretch, who unconcernd would see
    • The laws destroy’d, a falling monarchy;
    • I could not, I am of another breed,
    • I ne’er should tamely see my country bleed;
    • Nor crouch to him, to truth and justice dead,
    • Or fawning compliment an empty head:
    • Let subtle knaves, to candour more inclin’d
    • Disguise the truth, I’d always speak my mind;
    • Perish the thought, the crime should ne’er be mine
    • To sacrifice at curst ambition’s shrine
    • The right to speak, and publickly display
    • In all it’s hideous forms despotic sway;
    • I ne’er should understand those prudent rules,
    • Decorum call’d by parasites and fools;
    • Discretion too, should with decorum fall,
    • I ne’er would be, what rascals decent call;
    • Resentment should to injuries be shewn,
    • Edition: current; Page: [99]
    • The people, by the language too be known,
    • ’Tis survile wretches who are decent thought,
    • Such as are sold, and those that would be bought:
    • When freedom calls, none should from danger start,
    • But take a noble, a decisive part;
    • I’d in the cause of freedom firmly stand,
    • And dare the stroke, e’en of that Tyrant’s hand,
    • Confed’rate villains, and their pow’r defy,
    • Born free like my forefathers, I would die
    • In that great cause, which is the cause of all,
    • Or free I’d live, or glory should I fall:
    • While truth and justice did my lines support,
    • I’d fear no King, nor Minion of that court;
    • Nor King, nor Minister, should then escape,
    • But share alike, the injurd people’s hate:
    • Tho’ minions talk’d, and lawyers set about,
    • To find the LIBEL, and the AUTHOR out;
    • Tho’ one should stare, another rascal cry,
    • “’Tis TREASON all, the AUTHOR ought to die.”
    • I’d laugh at them, nor care what they could do,
    • In honest rhime, each VILLAIN would persue.
    • Should such a PRINCE succeed to England’s Throne,
    • (Tho’ BORN a BRITON, they must BLUSH to own.)
    • Should he keep foes of FREEDOM, and of LAW,
    • Such foes as keep TRUE LOYALTY in AWE;
    • Pervert fair JUSTICE from her even course,
    • And know no LAW, except the LAW of FORCE;
    • Should he keep such as these, close to his breast,
    • (Striving the Scepter from his hand to wrest)
    • Should he keep such, and of the Stuart race,
    • Who made this Empire tremble to her base;
    • Should Scotsmen be prefer’d to Briton’s brave,
    • And none but Scotsmen, or a Scotsmans slave
    • Appear at Court, and lord it o’er the land,
    • Keeping all pow’r from the sovereign hand;
    • Edition: current; Page: [100]
    • Should he see only with a Scotsmans eyes,
    • Be taught to mock his injurd Britons cries;
    • Coop’d up at Court; (like sheep shut in a penn),
    • Little to read, and less to know of men;
    • To hear such men, as had no other ends
    • But to serve him, and be their country’s friends
    • Call’d disloyal, and rebels made appear
    • By base-born Scotsmen, always rebels HERE;
    • This to believe, believe it as his creed,
    • And through those traitors make all England Bleed:
    • Coop’d up at Court, and there be made a tool,
    • The greatest slave, as well as greatest fool;
    • Should England’s Crown be plac’d on such a head,
    • What mis’ry must the people then not dread:
    • Would they not curse the cause, the secret spring,
    • Whence all this dire oppression came, that King,
    • Would they not wish, the Day which gave him birth,
    • Had ne’er disgrac’d the records of the earth;
    • Would they not drag those traitors forth to view,
    • Who foes to him, sought England’s ruin too,
    • And make them answer for such horrid crimes,
    • Which all their race, as well as future times
    • Should strive to equal, or exceed in vain,
    • Crimes, that would leave a long, a lasting stain
    • Upon the land, worse than the Stuarts; who
    • Born Slaves, tried to make slaves of freemen too,
    • Who bound in chains, both Liberty and Law,
    • Quite friendless then, but Heaven sent NASSAU;
    • He ’gainst Slavery, made a glorious stand,
    • And broke those chains, which had disgrac’d the land;
    • With tenfold terror hurl’d his Vengeance down,
    • And drove a Slave, and Tyrant from the Crown,
    • Founded the throne in justice, truth, and right,
    • And rescu’d FREEDOM from the shades of night,
    • Drove superstition, (with her bigot crew)
    • Edition: current; Page: [101]
    • Far from this land, (James he run with her too,)
    • Drove persecution to her seat in Rome,
    • Whilst Tyrants wept at Slavrys bloody tomb:
    • Restored to Britain, all the rights of man,
    • First fixt by Heav’n, on wisdom’s sacred plan.
    • Such deeds as theirs, wou’d fire my soul with rage,
    • And make me e’en against my safety, wage
    • War with vill’ny, and stamp their horrid crimes,
    • That each might live, and stink to after-times.
    • Would make me call forth ancient British rage
    • To just revenge, or mark the coward age,
    • Thrice happy now, when evry blessing springs,
    • From GEORGE the THIRD, we boast the BEST of KINGS.
    • Should such a King succeed to England’s Throne,
    • (Tho’ BORN a BRITON, they must BLUSH to own)
    • Should he succeed, when France and Spain are leagu’d
    • To shake the state, and make the nation bleed;
    • When France and Spain by compact2 shall engage,
    • To ruin us, with war’s destructive rage,
    • When Heaven sees the lives UNJUSTLY slain,
    • By restless France, join’d with ambitious Spain;
    • Sees ENGLAND bleed, her blood UNJUSTLY shed,
    • And hurl’s down vengeance, on each guilty head;
    • Bids ENGLAND’S arms pull lawless power down,
    • And with her conquests shake each TYRANT’s crown:
    • Should he succeed, when ENGLAND rais’d above
    • Edition: current; Page: [102]
    • All former times, and WISDOM join’d with LOVE,
    • In council sits, makes paltry factions cease,
    • And tho’ at War, yet all at HOME is PEACE;
    • Whilst ENGLAND keeps one half the world in AWE,
    • And by her POW’R can give the other LAW;
    • When each new day, crowns Britons with success,
    • And Heaven seems some Chatham’s plans to bless;
    • Should he succeed, when war in dread alarms,
    • Calls forth the nation’s WISDOM, with her ARMS,
    • Calls forth RESENTMENT from the BRITISH THRONE,
    • To make her VENGEANCE, and her POWER known;
    • Should he succeed, and roll SUPINE in state,
    • (And leave her GLORY and RENOWN to fate)
    • Would be a crime (that Heav’n could not forgive,)
    • To blast his name, and make his memory live:
    • Live, with recorded VILLAINS to that Day,
    • When time shall cease, and all the world decay:
    • Should he to make this crime still worse appear,
    • Turn out a Minister to ENGLAND DEAR,
    • Who’d rais’d his Country (from a SINKING state)
    • By WISDOM only, (not by chance or fate)
    • To POW’R and STRENGTH, not known in days of yore,
    • Known only then, and to be known no more;
    • At his command, like that great PATRIOT PITT,
    • Makes France to yield, and Spain, tho’ proud, SUBMIT;
    • Makes British VALOUR, with just vengeance hurl’d,
    • Strike TERROR thro’ each nation of the world:
    • Should he be (through a Scotsman’s base design)
    • Forc’d from his office, or made to resign,
    • And that same Scotsman of the Stuart race,
    • Mount in his seat, the nation’s foul disgrace,
    • False to his King, give up those conquests won,
    • And fix in strength, both France and Spain undone;
    • Should he make war, defensive war to cease,
    • On terms inglorious, by a shameful peace,
    • Edition: current; Page: [103]
    • A peace which must from foul CORRUPTION spring,
    • Thro’ that base Scotsman, but still BASER King;
    • Dead to all sense of England’s future good,
    • To sacrifice, her treasure, and her blood.
    • Such deeds as these, would fire my soul with RAGE,
    • And make me e’en against my SAFETY, wage
    • War with VILL’NY, and stamp their horrid crimes.
    • That each might live, and stink to after-times.
    • Thrice happy now, when evry blessing springs,
    • From GEORGE the THIRD, we boast the BEST of KINGS.
    • Should such a King succeed to ENGLAND’S Throne,
    • (Tho’ BORN a BRITON, they must BLUSH to own)
    • Should he, (when by Scots arts, by bribes, and fraud,
    • A peace most infamous, is made abroad;
    • And, for distinction sake, at Fontainbleau,3
    • The curse of England, and of Scotland too;)
    • Should he, persuing still the path of shame,
    • Give up all pow’r, reserving but the name
    • Of King, let rebel Scotsmen, steer the helm
    • Of State, and sow fell discord in the realm,
    • Make tax on tax, (while England curst with peace)
    • Each year arise, each year to say increase;
    • Each year call loud, aloud for new supplies,
    • While ruin did, with double horror rise;
    • Should he, when such oppressions from those men,
    • Call’d forth some Wilkes, (a Wilkes may be agen;
    • Edition: current; Page: [104]
    • Be sent by Heaven, his country to bless,
    • To rescue ENGLAND from each deep distress;)
    • Call’d forth some Wilkes, in honour to oppose
    • Their measures, and their subtle arts expose;
    • To shew the people ev’ry base design,
    • Their schemes to thwart, their plans to undermine;
    • To speak such truths, as some would fear to think,
    • And shew the gulph, where Englishmen must sink;
    • Sink and remain, till time would be no more,
    • In the damnd gulph of ARBITRARY POW’R:
    • Thus to stand forth, and only with this view,
    • To save his COUNTRY, and her FREEDOM too;
    • To sound the alarm of danger in her ear,
    • Call forth her RAGE, and shew what she should FEAR
    • Make TRAITORS tremble at the strokes he gave,
    • Tremble and fear the nation to ENSLAVE;
    • To brand those villains with just marks of shame,
    • That each might live, live with a blasted name;
    • Thus to stand forth, with these, these noble views,
    • All DANGER to defy, and BRIBES refuse;
    • Would well deserve (altho’ some TRUTHS might sting,)
    • Both FAVOUR and PROTECTION from that King:
    • Should he, (weak Prince, a surer hate to gain,
    • And make the people daily curse his reign,)
    • Dead to all sense, of HONOUR and of TRUTH,
    • The friend of SLAV’RY in his early youth,)
    • Drunk with PREROGATIVE, a Scotsman’s tool,
    • In MEANNESS bred, fond of DESPOTIC rule;
    • Should he in rage, exert a LAWLESS POW’R,
    • And order him, CLOSE prison’r in the TOWER;
    • (His friends REFUSE admittance to his room,
    • And cruel PRESECUTION be his doom;)
    • Immur’d within those walls for life must be,
    • Unless a PRATT should rise and set him FREE;
    • Yet in such times, and he once more at LARGE,
    • Edition: current; Page: [105]
    • Some Scotch Chief Justice, may renew the charge;
    • Tyrannic pow’r not willing to RETRENCH,
    • And send him for TWO YEARS, to the Kings Bench.
    • The people then would surely flock to see,
    • Fair FREEDOM’S friend, the friend of LIBERTY;
    • To shew their Love, (with well deserv’d applause)
    • To him, who tri’d to save their CHARTER’D LAWS.
    • A SECRETARY ready to fulfill,
    • The bloody mandates of a Tyrant’s will;
    • Might send the cruel Scots, their swords to wield,
    • To gain fresh laurels in St. Georges Field;
    • Should e’er the English by the Scots be slain,
    • In such a cause, a TYRANT’S love to gain,
    • And I be doom’d by heav’n to see the day,
    • Some future year, and on the TENTH of MAY,
    • Should then a youth, thro’ VILLAINY decreed
    • To fall, by Scotsmen there be MASSACRED,
    • (Whom for distinction sake, I’ll ALLEN call,)
    • Persu’d, and in his Father’s house to fall,)
    • An only son, and all his father’s care,
    • His greatest hope, as well as only heir;
    • To see that father sunk in deep distress,
    • SUPPLICATE the Throne, begging for REDRESS;
    • Calling for JUSTICE, (distracted, undone,)
    • Justice, ’gainst the MURDERER’S of his SON
    • This REFUS’D, the MURDERER’S too be PAID,
    • A PRINCE for BLOOD, and from that KING have AID:
    • A Jury PACK’D, a JUDGE most ready too,
    • Obey that Court, and all its rotten crew;
    • ’Gainst JUSTICE, LAW, and TRUTH, (cursed deed!)
    • To hear him say, “the English ought to bleed;”
    • “I have it in commission from the King,
    • “That not ONE SCOTSMAN, while he reigns shall swing;
    • “The SCOTS were SENT, the King he thus had will’d,
    • “They should have butcherd more, nay, thousand’s kill’d;
    • Edition: current; Page: [106]
    • “There can no CRIME unto THEIR charge be laid,
    • “But by the KING, whom they have not obeyd;
    • “For by the world, this should be understood,
    • “’Twas his DESIGN, to fill the fields with BLOOD.”
    • Such deeds as these would fire my soul with RAGE,
    • And make me e’en against my SAFETY, wage
    • War with VILLAINY, and stamp these Monsters crimes,
    • That each might live, and stink to after-times:
    • Would make me, if I had a hand to write,
    • Paint these foul deeds, dark as the shades of night;
    • Would make me call forth ancient British RAGE,
    • To JUST REVENGE, or mark the COWARD AGE.
    • Thrice happy now, when evry blessing springs,
    • From GEORGE the THIRD, we boast the BEST of KINGS.
    • Should such a King succeed to ENGLAND’S Throne,
    • (Tho’ BORN a BRITON, they must BLUSH to own;)
    • Should he, in meanness bred, LAUGH at all LAW,
    • The senate keep by BRIBES, and FRAUD and AWE;
    • That parliament to ROYAL MANDATE true,
    • Shall ruin England and her FREEDOM too;
    • Intestine war shall be at BRENTFORD laid,
    • (To which that King shall give his utmost AID;)
    • A war ’gainst truth and honour, horrid deed!
    • To root up FREEDOM, and make VIRTUE bleed,
    • To stab the constitution’s very soul,
    • That right destroy, which now supports the whole;
    • Elections right, that firm, that great support,
    • ’Gainst venal statesmen, and a slavish court:
    • Yet none should suffer for such mighty guilt,
    • Nor all the blood which might that day be spilt:
    • Altho’ by hird villains some should be slain,
    • The villains trid, condemnd, ’twou’d be in vain,
    • In vain the nation should for justice call,
    • Edition: current; Page: [107]
    • A pardon would be sent from Surgeons Hall;
    • That King should laugh, his minions should laugh too,
    • To think each day they butcherd one, or two.
    • Such deeds as these would fire my soul with rage,
    • And make me e’en against my safety, wage
    • War with villny, and stamp that TYRANT’s crimes,
    • That he might live, and stink to after-times.
    • Thrice happy now, when evry blessing springs,
    • From GEORGE the THIRD, we boast the BEST of KINGS,
    • Should such a King succeed to England’s Throne,
    • (Tho’ born a Briton, they must blush to own;)
    • He would from France, to shameful insults yield,
    • And be afraid the British sword to wield;
    • Our cannon, France shall neither fear nor dread,
    • When known to her, a Patriot King was dead;
    • And he who reign’d, a scripture rule did know,
    • To strike him once, would turn for tother blow;
    • The terror of our fleets should be no more,
    • Nor carry thunder to a foreign shore;
    • But piece, by piece, be left to rot away,
    • With British glory, moulder and decay;
    • The insulting Spaniard, unchastisd shall dare,
    • To seize a ship, and off her rudder tare;
    • While England, neither dreaded, nor ador’d,
    • Stains with her pen, the lusture of her sword;
    • In cowardice gives up her rightful claim,
    • And blasts at once, her honour, and her name:
    • Curst be the time, the day, when that is told,
    • That England’s Empire of the sea is sold.
    • Such deeds as these, would fire my soul with rage,
    • And make me e’en against my safety, wage
    • War with villny and stamp that TYRANT’S crimes,
    • That he might live and stink to after-times.
  • Edition: current; Page: [108]
    • Thrice happy now, when evry blessing springs,
    • From GEORGE the THIRD, we boast the BEST of KINGS.
    • Should such a King succeed to England’s throne,
    • (Tho’ born a Briton, they must blush to own;)
    • Should he in meanness bred, laugh at all law,
    • The senate keep by bribes, and fraud in awe;
    • That parliament to loyal mandates true,
    • With England’s ruin, shall fix Boston’s too;
    • Her charters shall destroy, her rights invade,
    • Her commerce ruin, and the town blockade;
    • Shall fill that place, with men by slaughter fed,
    • To rob the starving people of their bred;
    • And fix by force, some curst oppressive laws,
    • Made through Scots villainy, (without a cause;)
    • In base compliance with that Tyrant’s will,
    • Her freedom to destroy, or blood to spill;
    • And step, by step, most infamous design,
    • Thus the whole constitution undermine;
    • First take from Boston, all the rights we gave,
    • Make each American, a Scotsman’s slave;
    • And next in chains the English shall be bound,
    • By that same King, in whom no truth they found;
    • Should I then live, I’d rather league with Hell,
    • Or rise in arms, and ’gainst that King rebel
    • Than be his slave, by all thats just and good,
    • I’d rather see my children roll in blood.
    • Such deeds as these, would fire my soul with rage,
    • And make me e’en against my safety, wage
    • War with vill’ny, and stamp that Tyrant’s crimes,
    • That he might live, and stink to after-times;
    • Would make me call forth antient British rage,
    • To just revenge, or mark the coward age.
    • Thrice happy now, when ev’ry blessing springs,
    • From GEORGE the THIRD, we boast the BEST of KINGS.
  • Edition: current; Page: [109]
    • Should such a King succeed to England’s throne,
    • (The nation must, with dire oppression groan,)
    • Should he in meanness bred, laugh at all law,
    • The Senate keep by bribes, and fraud in awe;
    • That parliament to royal mandates true,
    • With freedom, shall subvert religion too;
    • The Lords and Bishops, shall that Senate join,
    • And with the State, the church shall undermine;
    • The Protestant faith, which for ages stood,
    • On truth’s firm base, bought with a sea of blood;
    • Shall be destroy’d, and at that Tyrants call,
    • The Laws of God, shall into ruins fall;
    • The English then, to Catholics must bow,
    • And worship Idols, as they do God now;
    • Or else submit to persecution’s rod,
    • Be burnt alive, (for owning of their God)
    • With shirt well pitch’d, to give a shocking light,
    • And Smithfield once more blaze, at dead of night;
    • Then as before, with Hell they may conspire,
    • To set our churches, and the town on fire:
    • (That pious King, at pious Priest’s command,
    • May make crusado’s to the Holy-land,
    • Thro’ dangerous seas, to find the blessed spring
    • Of holy water, to which the Pope shall bring
    • Him safe, purge, and absolve him from his crimes,
    • As Pope’s absolv’d our King’s in former times,
    • And made them devil’s on the British throne,
    • They reign’d in blood, and Hell was all their own.)
    • And Bishop’s then e’en Satan shall out vye,
    • To please that KING will give their GOD the lie,
    • (But still they’ll have a sure and certain hope,
    • And find at last a Saviour in the Pope)
    • And no distinction could a Scotsman bring,
    • ’Twixt, DEVIL Bishop’s, POPE, and such a KING;
    • So far alike, (none should this disbelieve)
    • Edition: current; Page: [110]
    • Their aim the same to ruin and deceive,
    • By oaths nor conscience neither would be bound,
    • Could worse on Earth, or worse in Hell be found.
    • Such deeds as these, would fire my soul with rage,
    • And make me e’en against my safety, wage
    • War with vill’ny, and stamp their cursed crimes,
    • That each might live and stink to after-times:
    • Would make me call forth ancient British rage
    • To Just revenge, or mark to coward age.
    • Thrice happy now, when every blessing springs
    • From GEORGE the THIRD; we boast the best of KINGS.
    • Through that dark gloom one comfort shall appear,
    • (And all the world own I’m a PROPHET here)
    • Altho’ like crimes of old in Sodom’s land,
    • Those might draw vengeance from GOD’s righteous hand,
    • Yet for time, the AUTHORS shall not bleed,
    • Thro’ one Just man, who then shall greatly plead;
    • One BISHOP shall be found, and only ONE,
    • Then true to Man, to God, and Christ his Son,
    • There shall be one, ASAPH4 that one shall sing,
    • Just to his God, his Country and his King.
    • Should that dread time to England e’er be known,
    • When such a Monarch sits upon the throne,
    • Her senate brib’d, and only kept for sport,
    • To aid the BLOODY measures of a court,
    • Should that e’er be, a few brave virtuous men,
    • Edition: current; Page: [111]
    • (A Chatham, Burke, a Glinn,5 may be agen)
    • May try, with truth and justice on their side,
    • To stem the torrent of corruption’s tide;
    • Like virtuous Romans they may firmly stand,
    • With some few more, to save a falling land;
    • May bravely struggle in their country’s cause,
    • And nobly try to save her charter’d laws;
    • But try in vain, truth shall not find support,
    • From rascals brib’d, and by a rotten court:
    • Should honour rise, by justice call’d to tell,
    • How England bled, and how the Romans fell;
    • Should virtue honour join, at Heaven’s call,
    • To shew that Britons must like Romans fall:
    • Should they, base villainy drag forth to light,
    • St. Stephen’s troops, shall then prepare to fight;
    • And legions arm, against truth and virtue’s laws,
    • Will there defend the blackest villain’s cause;
    • And honour, justice, truth and virtue meet
    • This fate, shall victims fall at powers feet.
    • Dread EVILS these, yet they will surely spring,
    • From Lords and Commons, join’d with such a King.
    • In such a time, at FREEDOM’S glorious call,
    • Britons must strike, and make those TRAITORS fall,
    • A deed which would by ages be admir’d,
    • Edition: current; Page: [112]
    • A day kept HOLY, when their souls expir’d:
    • Then would, happier days, to Albion be restor’d,
    • In such a time would REVOLUTION stand,
    • Each Briton’s boast, the glory of the land.
    • But should that time to England once be known,
    • When foul corruption stinks upon the throne,
    • And she has POPISH BISHOPS of her own.
    • When each other the THREE estates shall JOIN,
    • By force or fraud, the state to undermine;
    • When Britons do, and with INGLORIOUS ease,
    • SUBMIT to WRONGS, such curs’d wrongs as these;
    • When that shall be (quite dead to Heaven’s call)

N. B. The spirited letter signed CASCA, is come safe to hand, and shall be properly attended to. The Authors of the CRISIS will be extremely glad of the future favours of the Writer, which will be very acceptable, and the expence of postage, most readily paid.—They hope to hear from him soon, and would wish to have an addition in a few Days to the letter already received.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [113]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

With Rage from Hell the Tyrant’s Heart may glow,

But He’s no Briton who can strike the Blow.

Every Englishman must deplore the ill Success, and abhor the unworthy Treatment which attended the two late Conciliatory Plans in relation to America. Pregnant with good Sense, Benevolence, and sound Reason; they will do eternal Honour to the Wisdom, Justice, Policy, and Humanity, of the Heads and Hearts that formed them. How different was the Plan of North? Crafty, Mean, Insidious, Impolitic, Irrational, Shallow, and (like himself and his Coadjutors) beneath Contempt.1 This was not treating with America, but insulting her: every Step against her, hitherto, has been founded in the greatest Inhumanity, the grossest Ignorance, and the worst Policy. I will proceed to prove my Assertions, and defy the whole Cabal of Ministerial Slaughtermen to confute me. I do not call upon the Master-Butcher, because He can only be considered (after the Part he has acted by asserting) as an executive, and not as a rational Monster in this Business.—First then, for the Humanity of these Proceedings. Let it be granted only (as it Edition: current; Page: [114] must) that the Crown stands in the same Relation to America, as a Parent to her Child, and my first Assertion proves itself. Have any gentle, tender, sensible Means, been used to reconcile her? Have not her humble Remonstrances, Proposals, Submissions, and Supplications, been treated with Contempt?—not suffered to lie upon the Table of a British House of Commons? Have they been deemed Worthy of a Thought by her pious Sovereign? Has she not been branded with the ignominious Name of Rebel, by Act of Parliament, for no other Reason (I mean no true one) than because she has wisely and calmly deliberated upon, remonstrated against, and steadily, but not tumultuously, resented the repeated Injuries she has received?—as to Riots by Mobs, they are not to be imputed to her as Treason and Rebellion. America (as a Nation most unconstitutionally oppressed) has hitherto only deliberated upon her Sufferings:—She has not acted.—My Lords Suffolk, Pomfret, Radnor, Apsley, Sandwich, they have not acted.—It is, as yet, no Treason, my Lords, to think, to advise, to fear, and to prepare. You cannot, you dare not, move to annull (as you may wish) the Statute of Treasons in America. The Americans have as good a Right to that as your Lordships. I mean as yet, my Lords, because I am not quite satisfied that (even in the Present smuggled and corrupt Parliament) the Boldest and most venal Prostitute, durst make so dangerous a Trial upon the Patience and long Suffrance of this Kingdom.—I will now inform your Lordships that it is contrary to the Law of Nations to attempt the Destruction even of the most inveterate Enemy by Famine, until he has been first solemnly summoned to submit. Have the Americans ever yet been (though, if Men, they shortly will be) in Arms? Have they yet had a Prospect of any other Terms than such as would make them Slaves? Will they be Weak enough to submit to such Conditions? the Preliminaries hitherto proposed, have been founded in Oppression, not in Reason: they are fit for Brutes, not Men. The lenient, the compassionate North, has treated America like the Assassin of an Alley—with his Knife at her Throat, he has humanely left it at her Choice to strip herself, for Fear she should be stripped by him.—Why have the Ministry had recourse at first to this inhuman Scheme of Famine? They fear the Army will relent, when they find they must Wade through the Blood of Edition: current; Page: [115] their own Country-men. Their present General (Gage) has, to his Honour, declined the Bloody Task. Even a foreigner, to whom the same Command was offered, has revolted at the Thought.2 Is not this Stratagem of starving Freemen into Slavery, the most Inhuman, as well as the most Cowardly, of all others, especially when it is considered that all the Remonstrances of these unhappy Sufferers, have been rejected? I should insult the Reader’s understanding by waiting for a Reply,—I therefore come to the next Ingredient in the American Persecution, Ignorance.—I must first Remark that some of their wise Lordships were for having Maryland and Virginia (very remote inland Countrys) prohibited from the fishery.—Thus far have some of the great and sage Counsellors of this Nation been Ignorant even of the Situation of that Part of their Fellow-Creatures, whom they wish to involve in the most dreadful of all Calamities,—Famine. But the very Scheme itself is Impracticable; these wretched People cannot be totally destroyed either by Butchery or Famine: their Numbers are great and formidable; in such a vast extent of Country their resourses will be endless: they are not destitute of Arms already, and they will be supplied with more in spite of our vigilant Fleet. They have all the Materials necessary for War in the Bowels of their Country: they have Artists, Handicraftsmen, Manufacturers, and Mechanics of all Sorts; Cattle of all kinds; Fruit of the Earth in vast aboundance; fine streams and Rivers: though, no doubt, Administration (for the sake of Consistency) will give strict Orders, and pay highly for the poisoning of these; but that will not easily be effected: these People in General, know the use of Arms; they have Perseverance, Courage, Resolution,—and above all, (most prophetic Lord Sandwich) they have Virtue, which can never be overcome. Should our Army strike, and fail, the hatred, enmity, and revolt of America, is Edition: current; Page: [116] fixed for ever: they never will submit to lick the Tyrant-hand, which has once been raised against their Liberties, their Properties, and their Lives. Under the above Considerations, the Present scheme of Government must seem Impracticable; if so, or if from Rancour and Resentment, it has been viewed but Partially, it is the grossest Ignorance to pursue it. Should Heaven interpose on the Side of Justice, we shall perceive our Error too late; but were our Attempts by Sword or Famine, sure of Success, Government is only destroying its own Vitals.—What then is the Policy of this unnatural War? It is like the War between the Belly and the other Members; the whole State must feel is Consequences. Shallow North told his House of Commons (for it is his) that the Imports from the American Continent were inconsiderable. Now my Lord? You ought to know (and in Honour you should have declared) that the Imports of that Part of America into our Sugar Colonies were the very Life of them: neither Planters, nor Negroes, can Subsist without them; particularly in the prohibited, interdicted Article of Fish, which, when salted, is their general Food. Your Lordship by your War, and your intended Famine, has effectually starved and ruined all the Passive and obedient Sugar-Colonies, as well as your declared Enemies in America. Thus a most valuable Fishery, a considerable Sugar Trade, and Thousands (perhaps Millions) of Innocent and brave Lives will be sacrificed by a narrow-minded Ministry to wicked Views, and insatiable Resentments, in the Reign of a Monarch born a Briton! An ancient Pict, or a wild Indian, (Savage in their Natures) would Blush and Shudder at such Proceedings.—With the Colonies and Trade the Revenues must sink. If royal Profusion, and Ministerial Corruption, were to sink likewise, it would be well; but they will still attempt to draw Blood from the most impoverished Veins. The Commerical, the landed Interest, the Public Bank, at last, must feel the Shock. Then, perhaps, when Famine threatens at our own Doors, the British Lion will be roused.—Then, (for I will Prophecy in my turn) comes a Revolution, fatal to Minions, Pensioners, Placemen, Knaves, and Tyrants; but happy for the Nation, if from the Ashes of all these Pests, the Rights of suffering and insulted Englishmen, can be once more established.—We shall find it to our Cost, in vain to send English Soldiers (none but Scotch will do Edition: current; Page: [117] the Business) against English Breasts. I am of Opinion (let the Wishes of the Ministry be what they will) that if every Officer who goes upon this Assassination were a Burgoyne,3 he would be Disappointed of the Blood he pants for, his Command will be a Sinecure, and his Victory a brave and virtuous Desertion. All who deserved the Names of Soldiers, would throw down their Arms, and Embrace their gallant and unhappy Countrymen. An English Army will not, and a Navy cannot destroy the Liberties of America: the Ministry, who wish to deceive the Nation, are (as they frequently are) deceived themselves: they cannot execute their Plan without extraordinary and successive (almost perpetual) Drafts of Forces. Should the Patient Sprit of this Kingdom, rise at such a Time in Arms, and France and Spain add to the Horrors of a Civil War, even in the midst of these Calamities, it will be some Consolation that the Advisers, Abettors, and detestable Heads of these diabolical Measures, cannot long escape the Vengeance of an injured People.


Notwithstanding we have given almost the usual Quantity of Matter already, we cannot here omit without injury to our Readers and the Cause of Liberty, the spirited City Remonstrance which will do immortal Honour to the Heads and Hearts of those who framed it.

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The Address, Remonstrance, and Petition of the CITY of LONDON.5

“WE your Majesty’s dutiful and loyal Subjects, the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Livery of the City of London, beg leave to approach the Throne, and declare our Abhorrence of the Measures which have been pursued, and are now pursuing, to the Oppression of our fellow Subjects in America. These Measures are big with all the Consequences which can alarm a free and commercial People. A deep and perhaps a Fatal wound to Commerce; the ruin of Manufactures; the Diminution of the Revenue, and consequent increase of Taxes; the Alienation of the Colonies; and the Blood of your Majesty’s Subjects.

“But your Petitioners look with less Horror at the Conscquences, than at the purpose of those Measures. Not deceived by the specious Artifice of calling Despotism—Dignity, they plainly perceive that the real Purpose is—To establish Arbitrary Power over all America.

“Your Petitioners conceive the Liberties of the whole to be inevitably connected with those of every part of an Empire founded on the common Rights of Mankind. They cannot therefore observe, without the greatest Concern and Alarm, the Constitution fundamentally violated in any Part of your Majesty’s Dominions. They esteem it an essential, unalterable principle of Liberty, the Source, and Security of all constitutional Rights—that no Part of the Dominion can be Taxed without being represented. Upon this great leading Principle, they most ardently wish to see their fellow Subjects in America secured in what their humble Petition to your Majesty prays for—Peace, Liberty, and Safety.—Subordination in Commerce, under which the Colonies have always chearfully acquiesced, is, they conceive, all that this Country ought in Justice to require. From this subordination such advantages flow, by all the Profits of their Commerce centering here, as fully compensate this Nation for the Expence incurred, to which they also contribute in Men and Money for Edition: current; Page: [119] their Defence and Protection during a general War; and in their Provincial Wars they have manifested their Readiness and Resolution to defend themselves. To require more of them would, for this Reason, derogate from the Justice and Magnanimity which have been hitherto the Pride and Character of this Country.

“It is therefore with the deepest Concern, that we have seen the sacred security of Representation in their Assemblies wrested from them—the Trial by Jury abolished—and the odious powers of Excise extended to all cases of Revenue—the sanctuary of their Houses laid open to violation at the will and Pleasure of every Officer and Servant in the Customs—the dispensation of Justice corrupted, by rendering their Judges dependent for their Seats and Salaries on the will of the Crown—Liberty and Life rendered Precarious by subjecting them to be dragged over the Ocean, and tried for Treason or Felony here; where the Distance, making it impossible for the most Guiltless to maintain his Innocence, must deliver him up a victim to ministerial Vengeance—Soldiers and others in America have been instigated to shed the Blood of the People, by establishing a mode of Trial which holds out Impunity for such Murder—the Capital of New-England has been punished with unexampled Rigour—untried and unheard—involving the Innocent and the suspected in one common and inhuman calamity—Chartered Rights have been taken away, without any forfeiture proved, in order to deprive the People of every legal exertion against the Tyranny of their Rulers—the Habeas Corpus Act, and Trial by Jury, have been suppressed; and French despotic Government, with the Roman Catholic Religion, have been Established by Law, over an extensive Part of your Majesty’s Dominions in America; dutiful Petitions for redress of those Grievances, from all your Majesty’s American Subjects have been fruitless.6

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“To fill up the Measure of these oppressions, an Army has been sent to enforce them.

“Superadded to this, Measures are now planned upon the most merciless Policy of starving our fellow Subjects into a total surrender of their Liberties, and an unlimited Submission to Arbitrary Government.

“These Grievances have driven your Majesty’s faithful Subjects to despair, and compelled them to have recourse to that resistance which is justified by the great principles of the Constitution, actuated by which, at the glorious period of the Revolution, our Ancestors transferred the Imperial Crown of these Realms from the Popish and Tyrannic race of the Stuarts, to the Illustrious and Protestant House of Brunswick.

“Your Petitioners are persuaded, that these Measures originate in the secret advice of Men who are Enemies equally, to your Majesty’s Title and to the Liberties of your People. That your Majesty’s Ministers carry them into Execution by the same Fatal Corruption which has enabled them to wound the Peace and violate the Constitution of this Country—thus they poison the Fountain of Public Security, and render that Body which should be the guardian of Liberty, a formidable instrument of Arbitrary Power.

“Your Petitioners do therefore most earnestly beseech your Majesty to dismiss immediately, and forever, from your Councils, those Ministers and Advisers, as the first Step towards a full redress of those Grievances which alarm and afflict your whole People. So shall Peace and Commerce be restored, and the Confidence and Affection of all your Majesty’s Subjects, be the solid supporters of your Throne.

The KING’s ANSWER, Which would do Honour to any BUTCHER, MONSTER, or TYRANT on Earth.

“It is with the utmost Astonishment that I find any of My Subjects capable of encouraging the Rebellious Disposition which unhappily, exists in some of My Colonies in North America.

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“Having entire Confidence in the Wisdom of My Parliament, the great Council of the Nation; I will steadily pursue those Measures which they have recommended for the support of the constitutional Rights of Great Britain, and the Protection of the Commercial interests of My Kingdoms.”7

N. B. The Letter signed J. B. (Secretary) come safe to Hand. It is far from the Design of the Authors of the CRISIS to impose upon the Public, and they will allways think themselves obliged to those who promote the Sale of their Paper; but they beg Leave to inform J. B. that they cannot find UNDERSTANDING for him together with Matter, Paper, and Printing at the Same Price; however they faithfully Promise to stand corrected by him when he has learned to SPELL.8

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [122] Edition: current; Page: [123]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

The present Necessary DEFENSIVE War on the Part of America, justified by the Laws of God, Nature, Reason, State, and Nations; and therefore no TREASON or REBELLION.

IT must be apparent to every Englishman, not blinded by Malice or Ignorance, that the Americans by raising Forces, and taking up Arms, have no Intention to offer Violence to his Majesty’s Person, Crown or Dignity, nor to draw any English Blood; but only to defend themselves, their Rights and Liberties, against encroaching Violence and LAWLESS POWER, to rescue his Majesty out of the Hands of his present evil, malignant Advisers; to bring him back to a just Sense of his DUTY; and those Delinquents to condign Punishment; who are now engaged in a desperate Conspiracy against the natural Rights of Mankind. The Americans have endeavoured by every possible Means, to accommodate the present unhappy Dispute with the King and his INFERNAL MINIONS, upon just, reasonable, and honourable Terms; but hitherto in vain. His Majesty having contrary to his OATH, his DUTY, and the fundamental Laws of God and the Realm, sent an Army of mercinary Soldiers to America, against his Subjects, for the avowed and open Edition: current; Page: [124] Purpose of robbing them of their PEACE, their RIGHTS, their LIBERTIES, their PROPERTIES, or their LIVES, and to impose UNLAWFUL TAXES by force of Arms; the Americans may Lawfully and Justly, by the great Principles of the Constitution, without any Treason or Rebellion, take up Arms in Defence of their Privileges, Laws, Lives, Liberties, and Properties; even if the King were present to assist and encourage his Soldiers, in this unnatural, bloody, and destructive Civil War.

When a King throws off all restraint of Law, and is bound by no Principles of Justice or Humanity, when he Invades with open Force, the Liberties and Persons of his Subjects in a hostile Manner, only to answer the most diabolical, arbitrary, and infamous Purposes, the People of England, and every Part of the British Empire, will be justified in taking up Arms, and resisting such Invasions and Violence; otherwise they must fall a Prey to his insatiable Rapine, and become the absolute Slaves of Arbitrary Power, by way of Conquest.

We have several Instances in the History of this Country, and in many Ages, of the People of England resisting by force of Arms, the Oppressions, Rapines, unjust Violence, and Armies of their Princes raised against them; and they have even encountered their KINGS in open Battle, and taken them Prisoners; sometimes expelled, and at other Times deposed them from their Royal Authority, when they became Incorrigible, open and professed Enemies to the Kingdom, and sought the Ruin and Desolation of their subjects when by Office, Duty, Oath and common Justice, they were Bound inviolably to protect them in Liberty and Peace. Among many other Examples of such Proceedings, and the Bravery and Virtue of our Ancestors, are the following; viz. the Case of King John, Henry the Third, Edward the First, Richard the Third, and Henry the Sixth; nor are these Examples singular, all Kingdoms, and in all Ages, have done the same, when their King (like the present Sovereign on the Throne of England) degenerated into Tyrants, of which there are infinite Precedents in History: and such Actions in every Age and Nation have always been deemed Lawful and Just; as warranted by the Laws of God, Nature, Reason, State, and Nations; all which Instruct, not only particular Persons, but whole Cities and Kingdoms, for their own necessary Edition: current; Page: [125] Defence and Preservation, the Support of human Society, and Liberty, to protect themselves against all unlawful Violence and Tyranny, even in the Person of their Kings, their Ministers, or Minions, to whom the Laws of God, Nature, Man, nor any civil Nation, ever yet gave the least Authority to murder, spoil, oppress, or enslave their Subjects, or deprive them of their Liberties or Estates: Resistance were it Unlawful or Unjust, (as the Pimps and Parisites of a Court would insinuate) a few ambitious, bloody minded, tyrannizing Kings, might, without Molestation, in a short space of Time, RUIN, MURDER, or ENSLAVE, the whole Race of Men; overturn the settled Forms of Civil Government, extirpate the Christian Religion, and destroy human Society at their Pleasure: this, and Worse, if possible, had been effected; nay, every State and Kingdom, had been totally subverted long ago, by the worst of Monsters, Lawless Princes; had not this just, natural, hereditary Power of resisting and opposing their illegal Violence, (inherent in the People) restrained and prevented, such bloody and destructive Designs, from being carried into Execution.

This necessary and defensive Opposition, and resistance against regal Violence, which has ever been held Lawful, and often practised in almost every Kingdom, will justify the Americans, in taking up Arms, and resisting the present Arbitrary, Cruel, and Bloody Measures, now carrying on against them, by an infatuated, obstinate, perverse King, his infernal Ministers, and their Agents, whose only Object in View, is the entire RUIN of this once GREAT, HAPPY, POWERFUL, and FLOURISHING KINGDOM, and the DESTRUCTION of PUBLIC LIBERTRY.

It is expressly declared by Aristotle, Xenophon, King Edward the Confessor, in his established Laws, the Council of Paris in 829, by Bracton, Fortescue, and even King James himself, that a King governing in a settled Kingdom, CEASES TO BE A KING, and degenerates into a TYRANT, so soon as he leaves to rule by LAW, much more, when he begins to INVADE his SUBJECTS, PERSONS, RIGHTS, LIBERTIES, to set up an ARBITRARY POWER, impose UNLAWFUL TAXES, RAISE FORCES, and make WAR upon his Subjects, whom he should PROTECT, and Edition: current; Page: [126] Rule in PEACE;1 to PILLAGE, PLUNDER, WASTE, and SPOIL his Kingdoms; IMPRISON, MURDER, and DESTROY his People in an HOSTILE Manner; this they severally declare to be the highest degree of Tyranny, condemned and detested by God, and all good Men. The whole State and Kingdom therefore, in such Cases as these, for their own necessary Preservation, may Lawfully, with FORCE of ARMS, when no other Means can secure them, not only Passively, but actively resist their Prince, in such his Violent and Tyrannical Proceedings; without resisting any Kingly lawful Authority, for that is vested in the Kings Person, for the Preservation, not the Destruction of the Kingdom; because these illegal Oppressions and Tyrannical Actions, are not warranted, but prohibited by the Laws of God, and the Realm, (to whom he is Accountable, and by whom he is justly Censurable) he is no lawful King, nor Magistrate, but an unjust oppressive Tyrant, a mere Private Man, who by such Proceedings, hath denuded himself of his Just regal Authority: so that all those Laws made for the Defence of the Kings Person, and Sovereign Power, the Suppression of Insurrections, Treasons, and Conspiracies against him, while he Governs his People according to Law, as by OATH and DUTY he is Bound will yield no Countenance, Encouragement, or Protection to him; in such Tyrannical and cruel Oppressions, but more especially when he turns a public Enemy to his People, and proclaims OPEN WAR against them; invades their Laws, Liberties, Edition: current; Page: [127] and Persons, and exercises all Manner of Hostilities against them, the same as the most Barbarous and Foreign Enemy would do: It being contrary to common Sense and Reason, to suppose that our Laws, which strictly Inhibit and Punish the very smallest Violations of the Public Pease, in all other Persons, should COUNTENANCE, JUSTIFY, and PATRONIZE them in the King, the FIRST MINISTER, and supreme Fountain of Justice; and not permit the People under pain of Rebellion and Treason, so much as to defend their Lives, Liberties, Estates, and Religion, from the open Violence of the King himself, or his malignant plundering Ministers and Favourites. When as Fortescue and Bracton prove, Kings of all others, both by OATH and DUTY, ought to be more observant, and obedient to the Laws of God and the Land, than the very Meanest of their Subjects.

That Precept of St. Paul, Romans 13, 1–2–3. Let every Soul be Subject to the Higher Powers. &c.2 Means no more than this, that as long as Kings legally and justly execute the Trust committed to their Charge, and conferred on them by God and the People, they must, and ought to be OBEYED and submitted to, without the least Resistance, Private or Public; but if they degenerate into Tyrants, and turn professed Enemies to their People, by Murdering, Imprisoning, or destroying them by open Violence; or endeavouring by FORCE of ARMS, to subvert their Laws, Liberties, or Religion, and expose them as a Prey to their merciless blood thirsty Soldiers; I dare confidently to affirm, it was never the Intention of St. Paul, much less of our Laws, to inhibit Subjects, under Pain of Damnation, High in conscience Treason, or Rebellion, by defensive Arms, to resist KINGS THEMSELVES, or any of their Mercinary Adherents.

It was certainly never the Intention of the Apostle, to establish in the World, any errisistable Lawless Tyranny, or spoil of Kingdoms, and Butchery of Edition: current; Page: [128] Subjects, execrable to God and Man, in all Ages, and in all Persons who have resisted them, even unto Blood: he meant rather totally to suppress them. There being scarce any more pregnant Text, against the Tyranny, the boundless Prerogative, the illegal proceedings of Kings, and the higher Powers in all the Scripture, than that of Romans 13, 1st to 7th Verse, if properly understood, and rightly Interperted, as Pareus3 and others prove: therefore the Resistance of the Americans, against our Present seduced, malignant, Popish King, is no Violation of any Law of God or the Land, but a just and necessary War, which they have by every Means, to the utmost of their Power, endeavoured to prevent, and therefore no Treason or Rebellion within the meaning of any Law, or Statute; they are only arming themselves, for their own necessary Preservation, and to prevent their inevitable RUIN, they mean not OPENLY to assault the royal Army of Butchers; and I believe, there is no Divine among the whole Bench of Popish Bishops, no Casuist among the whole Tribe of venal Lawyers, except a few prostituted Court Slaves, VILLAINOUS enough to affirm, that it is Damnation in Conscience, or Treason and Rebellion in point of LAW, for our injured and suffering Fellow Subjects in America, to take up Arms for the Preservation of their Lives, their Liberties, and their Property; but would rather deem it Just and Honourable, nay, a Duty for every Englishman to venture his Life, and his Fortune in their Defence; in Defence of the dear bought Rights of his Country, and rather than Live a Slave, to die Gloriously in the Cause of PUBLIC LIBERTY.

N. B. Two Letters from CASCA are received, they came too late for this Weeks Number, but shall be made the Subject of our next. The Authors of the CRISIS beg CASCA will accept their most grateful Acknowledgements for this Favour.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Streer, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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  • Similis frondescit Virga.1

A constant Scourge—still I’ll renew the Charge, And lash the Tyrant as his Crimes enlarge.

A Foolish King grasps at Wealth and Power, as the Ends, a Wise King uses them as the means of Government. With the one, they are Gorgeous, vain Appendages of Royalty; with the other, they are happy Instruments of Benevolence. A foolish King eyes LIBERTY askaunt, and execrates it as the bane of Greatness; a wise King knows that neither Kingdom, nor Sovereign, can be Great without it. The Fool endeavours to root up, what the Patriot King most assiduously Cultivates. A weak Prince is jealous of LIBERTY in its lowest Branches. Hence it is, that he not only strikes at the Rights and Privileges of his People, but Edition: current; Page: [130] is Mean enough to envy the IMMUNITIES of a CORPORATION. He starts at Shadows. In such a Reign even COMMERICAL MEETINGS are ODIOUS, because they are composed of FREEMEN. Even Common Halls are an UNLAWFUL CONGRESS; like that in America, they are deemed REBELLIOUS ASSOCIATIONS. How sophistically do ministerial Scriblers labour to draw an artful Veil over such Political Transgressions as SOVEREIGNS, without a Blush, avow? Can the sagacious Doctor Johnson (that ministerial Hackney) any longer rally the well grounded Jealousies of England and America?2 Can he now ask these Croakers of Calamity, how Slavery can be brought from America into England? If he dares, I refer him for his Answer to Lord Hertford3 (one of the State Nurserymen) who sowed a subtle Seed, or two, of Slavery, even in our Metropolis, the other Day. I hope, however, that these Seeds will be severely choaked by the rank and stubborn WEED of LIBERTY. A Weed it is now deemed in the CABINET, and in the LEGISLATURE, and in both condemned to be rooted up. A Crop far more promising is expected. The Experiment of raising it by SLOW DEGREES, has just been made. His MAJESTY, sick of all ADDRESSES but those of his FAITHFUL PARLIAMENT, has just declared, “That he will not receive on the Throne, any ADDRESS, REMONSTRANCE, or PETITION, of the Lord Mayor, and Aldermen of the City of London, but on their CORPORATE CAPACITY.” Thus is the Notice worded by Lord Mansfield, Lord Chief Justice (not of the Ceremonies) but of England.—The Reason, or rather the DESIGN of this, is Plain. For all Acts done in their CORPORATE Edition: current; Page: [131] CAPACITY, the City of London is Responsible as a CORPORATION. Neither the Proceedings, the Resolves, nor the CONGRESS of a COMMON HALL, can forfeit the CHARTER of the City; the Offences, (such as Petitions) of the City, as a CORPORATION, may. In the one Case, they act in their Political Capacity; in the other, they do not. The Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Liverymen, are Individuals; but the CORPORATION has but one Neck. This ministerial Mouse-Trap, is baited by a Lord Chief Justice of England, whose Duty it most clearly is (for I will Teach it him) to carry the Balance with an even and an equal Hand, between the just PREROGATIVES of the CROWN, and the undoubted PRIVILEGES of the SUBJECT.

I make no doubt but a Mansfield and a Thurloe will conduct the intended Scheme as well as a Jefferies, or a Sawyer. The memorable Case of the SEVEN BISHOPS, in James the Seconds Time, is now forgot at Court, and PETITIONS are once more degenerated into CRIMES.4

Though the actual Annihilation of the CITY CHARTER may not be intended, as it cannot be the Interest of the Crown to check any Source of Wealth; yet the Menaces, and intimidating Prosecutions of a RAPACIOUS MINISTRY may be expected to have the same happy Effects, as threatening Letters, sometimes, have among Thieves. They found it so lately, in the Case of the East India Company, and it is not improbable that their Audacity may strengthen with their Hopes.

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Toys and Baubles must be bought, and Baby Houses must be crowded to amuse and divert VACANT SOVEREIGNS, and Ravens must have Food. The numerous Mouths of CORRUPTION must be stopped. Too many Stratagems for the Sake of WEALTH and ARBITRARY POWER, cannot be tried. For GOLD every Coffer; for POWER every Vein must BLEED. The Predictions of America in respect to England herself, are now verifying. They are coming forward by slow Degrees, at this Instant. Our Ministers of late have had a strange Appetite for CHARTERS. In Wilkes’s Case they had the DARING IMPUDENCE to attack the GREAT CHARTER of ENGLAND for the sake of POWER. They have since been nibbling at the East India Company’s, for the sake of Wealth and Power both; the Company compounded and acquiesed.5 They are striking again at CHARTERS in America, (as their retained and pensioned Advocate Dr. Johnson says) for the sake of POWER, and they now have their Eye upon the Charters of London, for a Royal Reason,—for the sake of pursuing the Commercial-Interests of this Kingdom.

But are the PETITIONS of Common Halls, or Common Halls themselves, so dreadful? are the Meetings, (or more properely the Great Councils,) of this Metropolis so terrible? are they not Meetings of Meritorious Citizens and Loyal Subjects? in both these Capacities they have ADDRESSED, and in both they have OFFENDED.

How harsh and grating is the Voice of TRUTH! how unhallowed are the Lips that dare to utter it before the THRONE! Approach it ye British Slaves, upon the Knee; adore it with prostration, but profane it not with a PETITION! upon this Mercy Seat (alas!) the Sovereign will no more receive PETITIONS, from his Faithful Citizens and Friends, from those who supply his WANTS, his SUPERFLUITIES, his EXTRAVAGANCIES, and his Plenteous Coffers, upon this sacred Seat he can only listen to the SYCOPHANTIC ADDRESSES of a Corrupt and Destructive PARLIAMENT, those Leeches of the Realm, who so Edition: current; Page: [133] largely drain for their own abandaned uses, those Coffers, which his REPULSED CITIZENS so largely fill.

How like a GOD does a MONARCH look, encircled by TREACHEROUS MINIONS and RAPACIOUS FLATTERERS! How like a mere MORTAL, surrounded by Subjects MOST AFFECTIONATE, and SINCERE, who shower down at once both SUPPLIES and BLESSINGS, upon a Prince whom they HONOUR, ESTEEM, and LOVE!

But KINGS should quit the Track of MORTALS—they should disdain the little Virtues of HUMANITY! The Spirit of a Monarch should aspire at an ECCENTRIC CHARACTER, beyond the reach of MAN. This will nobly lead him not to endure, but to repell the humble Suits of his AGGRIVED SUBJECTS;—not to caress, but to detest his People;—not to sooth, conciliate, and appease; but to menace, insult, and exterminate: not to human Errors, but INHUMAN CRIMES: not to REFORMATION, but to MURDER. Not to JUSTICE, but to TYRANNY. Not to PEACE and HONOUR, but to REMORSE, HATRED, CALAMITY, RESISTANCE and the SCAFFOLD.

Let such Princes, like that unhappy Tyrant Charles the First, seek in Vain for Shelter, among the fawning Herds that idolize their Vices, for the sake of sharing their Prodigality and Profusion.

Let them try their faithful Scots, who as they have often received the Wages of CORRUPTION, will a Second Time receive the PRICE OF BLOOD.

Let them fly to the Arms of those tender Tyrants, their PRECEPTORS, who have thus carefully trained them to their IGNOMINY and RUIN from their Cradle.

Whilst they repulse a suffering and an injured Subject, let them fall for Consolation, upon the FRIENDLY Bosom of a Mansfield or a Bute.—Let them in their Frenzy fly for Succour to their CHANCELLOR,—not a York, alas!—but an Apsley, the poor SHADOW of a Mansfield.—Let them most deservedly taste all the Bitterness of Despair, and find Relief (though late) at last, in the generous CONDESCENSION and FORGIVENESS, of a DESPISED, INSULTED, and OPPRESSED PEOPLE.

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ASTONISHED then, my Lord Mansfield, not at the Humble, just PETITIONS, but at the LENITY of their PATIENT SUBJECTS, let them deliver up their MINIONS to the BLOCK, with Shame and Contrition resign the CROWN, and Sleep IGNOBLY with their Fathers; but let their INFAMY be recorded, that succeeding Princes may profit largely from such WEAK and GUILTY ANNALS.


N. B. The Epistle to Lord Mansfield from CASCA is received, and shall be made the Subject of our XVII Number. The Writer may depend, his Directions will upon every Occasion, be implicitly followed—The Authors of the CRISIS wish to be honoured with a private Direction, how to convey a few Papers Weekly to CASCA, for the Use of himself and Friends, as a small Tribute of Gratitude for the repeated Favours he has conferred on them. He may rest assured they never can betray PRIVATE CONFIDENCE, nor abuse the sacred Offices of Friendship.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [135]


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  • —Parcere Subjectis, et debellare Superbos.1
  • Virg.

To SUPPLICATION turn a Princely ear;

Nor MURDER Subjects you have SWORN to HEAR.

THE Motto of this Paper gives a Specimen of Roman, the proceedings against America, of English Policy.—There is, and must necessarily be, a Compact, either express, or emplyed, between every Sovereign and Subject. PROTECTION and OBEDIENCE are the mutual Stipulations, if the ONE is WITHDRAWN, the OTHER CEASES. Now, PROTECTION is certainly withdrawn, when Subjects, guilty of no HOSTILE, or REBELLIOUS Act, (I defy Edition: current; Page: [136] the Ministry to prove one against them) are nevertheless treated (like the Americans) as ENEMIES and REBELS. Administration, most falsely and audaciously, stigmatize them with the Name of REBELS, merely to colour their own base Designs, and UNJUSTIFIABE HOSTILITIES against their Fellow-Subjects; in whom they discern an odious Spirit of LIBERTY, which sets (for them) a DANGEROUS EXAMPLE to the Mother Country. The NOBLE FLAME is dying HERE, and it would be fatal to Ministerial designs, that it should be cherished in any Part of our Dominions.

The SPIRITED AMERICANS feel this Truth, they foresee, and wisely guard against the Danger. They have convened, and consulted for the PUBLIC SAFETY, like TRUE BRITONS. What then? Is such a national, political Congress, a traiterous Association? At SUCH a Time too, and in SUCH a Cause? Is the Situation and Circumstances of America (a NATION in point of Territory and Numbers) to be compared to that of Truro (a rotten Borough) in Cornwall? Buffoonery in serious Cases, Doctor Johnson, dishonours human Nature, and degrades human Understanding. Not even the Example of your Master, Doctor, who played Falstaff, after he had deluded a late unhappy Lord Chancelor of England into Suicide, can sanctify dramatic Pleasantry, at the Expence of LIFE, LIBERTY, PROPERTY, and a whole COUNTRY.2

Kill the next Piercy yourself,my Lord, is a species of Drollery, in a Case of BLOOD, unworthy even of a Hackney Writer; as to you, Doctor Johnson,—I do not expect you will write HONESTLY, but write Sensibly. Treat Subjects, (which might Affect even the Humanity of a Edition: current; Page: [137] Scotchman) no more ludicrously, indecently, unfeelingly, and abandonly.3—With your leave, Doctor, I once more call America a NATION, and a great NATION; too far distant from her Mother Country, to receive from her either immediate, or timely Assistance on any sudden foreign Attack, SHE must, in such a Case, find Succour within herself, or PERISH. And shall SHE, whose ABILITIES we do not know, whose Country, on an emergency, we cannot Defend, shall SHE be denied the BRITISH RIGHT of Representation in our Parliament, if SHE must be TAXED by our Parliament: suppose it will not avail her, if she had it, and she would, notwithstanding, be borne down and overwhelmed (as Doctor Johnson tells us) by a Majority of CORRUPT VOICES: yet, let her have the Pleasure of seeing the UNCLEAN Hands, if not the TRAITEROUS HEARTS, of those by whom she is to FALL.—It is her BIRTHRIGHT.—Shall SHE, so situated, so circumstanced, be denied the INHERENT PRIVILEGE, that INDUBITABLE RIGHT, of MEETING, CONSULTING, and RESOLVING for herself, at all Times, much less when we have wantonly assailed her? Is this REBELLION, let me cooly ask, Who was the first Agressor? Did we first consult, resolve, nay, act against America, or America against us? Here Administration must be dumb.

If UNWARRANTABLE OPPRESSION may be RESISTED, upon Revolution Principles, the Tye between England and America, is actually dissolved, our PROTECTION is withdrawn, our TYRANNIC Sword unsheathed, and Common Sense proclaims aloud, that OBEDIENCE in America is no more.

Why have we thus attacked her with unmerited Hostilities? because SHE would not PASSIVELY hold out her Hands to receive our CHAINS. Edition: current; Page: [138] SHE is wise,—SHE saw those CHAINS forging, and CONSULTED.—SHE sees them now actually ready to be rivitted, and is RESOLVED.

The Memory of a Cromwell warms my soul! America wants one at this Instant.4—Was there not a Period, long before those weak and wicked Monarchs Charles the First, and James the Second, were RESISTED, when England might have been truly said to have owed no Obedience to those Sovereigns? This cannot be denied.—But, Subjects were then to PRAY, and to APPEAL TO HEAVEN against TYRANTS, because they styled themselves GODS VICEGERENTS upon Earth. We seem to be coming round to the same Species of ADULATION and IDOLATRY again. As a Revolutionist, and a Whig, I hold a KING to be no more (upon Revolution Principles he is no more) than the HEAD CONSTABLE of the Realm. If he is a PATRIOT KING, he ought to be HONOURED and REVERED; but if he is less than that, he is no more to be WORSHIPPED than a CALF.5

In the Case of America we have been the Aggressors clearly. The Protection stipulated by the Sovereign AT THE ALTAR; extends to the LIVES, the LIBERTIES, and PROPERTY of the Subject. ALL THESE have been FIRST violated BY US, WANTONLY, WEAKLY, and WICKEDLY in America. Such a Violation is TREASON; (nay, start not, my Lords Bute and Mansfield) I say it is TREASON by the Laws of England.—Laws (my Lord Mansfield) not so easily erased as a Record. Whilst Edition: current; Page: [139] these Laws stand, every actual Breach of the COMPACT between King and People, committed by the SOVEREIGN, is TREASON AGAINST THE PEOPLE, and worse than TREASON; it is a Sin against HEAVEN, as well as against the SUBJECT. It is ROYAL PERJURY.

After such a Breach, does Obedience exist among Subjects? Answer me—not ye Mansfields and Machiavels, but ye venerable Shades, who bled for LIBERTY and JUSTICE; even the fanciful Montesquieu (as Doctor Johnson calls him) would turn a PERJURED MONARCH pale with his Reply.6—The Contention now (says the Doctor) is for Power. But is Power (before gentle Means are tried) to be maintained by FAMINE and by BLOOD! are the earliest Supplications of suffering Subjects to be slighted, rejected, and derided? Surely not.—Yet this has been the Fate of America. These humble Applications from distressed America have finally fallen down through the Fingers of MAJESTY, ADMINISTRATION, and the LEGISLATURE, to that consummate Politician, and Representative of the three great Estates of this Kingdom, Doctor Johnson; who has the unparalleled-impudence to treat them with low Humour, open Laughter, and Scurrility, in his late patriotic Publication, called Taxation no Tyranny. Thus, and only thus, have the Americans received a verbal Answer; received it from the hackney Pen of a scribbling Prostitute. They are, it seems, to receive Edition: current; Page: [140] a DECESIVE ONE in the FIELD.—Alas! had any TREASON been committed, Bills of Attainder would have passed? What? without hearing? Certainly. The consistent Spirit of Administration, and the MANLY PERSEVERANCE of their Sovereign, who confides in a smuggled and corrupt Parliament, would have requested it. Government now cannot be supported without Injustice. Besides, the hungry Myrmidons,7 the ministerial Bloodhounds, are looking for their Prey. They are already gaping for forfeited Lands in America.—Had there been but a glimmering of Treason, Bills of Attainder must have passed. The Fishery Bill is almost as penal. America is at this Moment suffering without an hearing, and without a Crime.

The Means used by Administration are, most humanely, and sagaciously, Preventive. They are now carrying Famine and Desolation into America, for fear she should resist, and punishing her as a REBEL, for fear she should Rebel. Her Supplications spurned, all conciliating Measures rejected, despotic Measures alone pursued, what resourse has She now, but in herself? General Gage, the Commander first sent against them, has from natural Honour, Justice, and Humanity, exceeded his Commission: in his Heart he is more an Advocate than an Enemy.—He has offended—He has desired to be recalled.Administration are disappointed in their Man; yet dare not discover and declare their Disappointment, by recalling him. This General, with a handful of Soldiers, was wisely commissioned to bully all America.—He disdained it.—It is a Task fitter for Burgoyne, who has learned it at the gaming Table, and practiced it at Preston. But this favourite Commander will make an admirable Figure for Mat. Darley, left, like a solitary Quixote, in the Field by his honest Troops, who will never sheath their Swords in the Bowels of their Countrymen.8 Edition: current; Page: [141] Had we acted like a Parent, we should have heard, admonished, advised, and (if possible) reclaimed, mistaken America; but still protected her. Instead of this, we have not only withdrawn our Protection (without trying one lenient Measure) but commenced War against her.—She sensibly withheld her former commercial Intercourses with England, and threatened to do the same with the West India Colonies.—Thus (says Doctor Johnson) they have defrauded their Creditors here, and condemned our Merchants to Bankruptcy. If Creditors and Merchants suffer, if Manufacturers complain, they must recurr to the first Cause. These are the pernicious Effects of the wise Steps, taken first by the ministerial Aggressors in this Country. Nor is it to be wondered at, if the Consequence of these rash and unjust Proceedings by the Harpies of Power, should produce (in case of an approaching War with France and Spain) a general Bankruptcy of this Nation.—A Thought by no means Chemerical, but truly Melancholy; a Thought, which can neither be baffled by the buffoonery of Hackney Scriblers, the grave Sarcasms of Statesmen, or the cruel Pleasantry of thoughtless Majesty itself.


Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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Casca’s Epistle to LORD MANSFIELD.

* Uni æqures Virtuti atque ejus amicis.

To Virtue only just and Virtue’s Friends.

  • Can you, my Lord, who serve despotic Ends,
  • Can you be “just to Virtue and her Friends?”
  • To wanton Murders when did She afford
  • Protection yet, or alter a Record?
  • Say, does your callous Soul receive no Shock,
  • When, conscious, in the Hall, you view the Clock?
  • Or can you fill perfidious ||Scroges’s place,
  • Edition: current; Page: [144]
  • Without a pressage of your own Disgrace?
  • Yes—Yes—to England’s shame, you’re out of reach,
  • And Laugh at him who Threatens to impeach.
  • If Burke should rise, the Farce no farther goes;
  • To one just Aye, North brings ten impious No’s.
  • In Youth, before dissembling was your Trade,
  • To James Libations on your Knees you made:
  • Not Loyalty, but Fear has sheath’d your Sting;
  • No Murray can be faithful to his King.
  • From the black North in famish’d Clans you swarm,
  • And, thawing, feel how Albion’s Sun can warm;
  • Your Clime you change, your Sentiments retain;
  • In Scotchmen Treason is an innate Stain;
  • Like Itch and Scurvy, in their Blood it reigns;
  • He who wou’d cure it, must exhaust their Veins.
  • Once against Rebels, ’twas your *Place to plead;
  • Your Mouth condemn’d, your Soul approv’d the Deed.
  • Whilst round your Heart sad Disappointmant hung,
  • Dissimulation oil’d your treach’rous Tongue.
  • A Murray then (your Brother too) was found
  • In Arms, in secret Trust; in Duty bound,
  • And Principle (like yours) to aid a Claim,
  • Which you affected with a Blush to name;
  • A Blush ill-acted;—to thy Ghostly pale,
  • (Index of Guilt) soft Nature lends no Veil.
  • No—She, my Lord, disdains to serve base Ends;
  • She’s “only just to Virtue and her Friends.
  • On them She smiles, on CHATHAM’S Cheek she glows,
  • When injur’d Children are assail’d like Foes;
  • When Famine’s call’d to aid the coward-plan,
  • And North completes what Bute and You began.
  • Perish your Names!—your Thane in fear is fled,
  • With ev’ry Curse, but Scotland’s, on his Head;
  • Edition: current; Page: [145]
  • In Shade, but not (alas!) in Death enshrin’d,
  • Whilst you, his faithful Proxy, speak his Mind;
  • And (to weak George from soothing Flatt’ry dear)
  • Pour your Laird’s Poison in the Royal-ear.
  • Why do your treach’rous Actions shun the Light?
  • Why do Back-stairs feel Mansfield’s Steps at Night?
  • To George your Councils and yourself convey,
  • Fraught with Infection, in the face of Day.
  • Let not the royal Closet’s Whisper screen,
  • Your glorious Works; but let your Light be seen.
  • Conduct, avow, enforce your Patriot-plans,
  • Nor trust their Merits to Subaltern Clans.
  • Tho’ Bute absconds, yet aid your Joint-design,
  • Yourself, my Lord; and help to spring the Mine.
  • Whilst Grafton, Sandwich, Denbigh, North, stand forth,
  • And to astonish’d Ears, proclaim their Worth;
  • Whilst, with rank Nonsense, Suffolk, Pomfret, dare,
  • Without a Blush, to make Plebeians stare;
  • Why, when your Sov’reign’s pleas’d by Law to kill,
  • Step not you forth to guild the desp’rate Pill?
  • ’Tis decent, sure, so pension’d, plac’d, and brib’d,
  • To recommend the Dose you have prescrib’d
  • But Fear, my Lord, mean, abject Fear, still gives
  • A Check—in you a lurking Traytor lives;
  • The worst of Traytors—you have Sense to see
  • Fair Freedom’s Charms, yet blast the Soul that’s Free.
  • Early and late, incessant in your Pains,
  • For brave America you forge vile Chains.
  • Yet meanly, in your House, or Court, take root,
  • When you should Speak, as Deputy to Bute.
  • He still lies Hid; perhaps, at *Clapham lurks,
  • Whilst You and Apsley carry on the Works.
  • Edition: current; Page: [146]
  • To grant a Nation’s Claim each House is loth,
  • But You have Representatives in both.
  • Strangely absurd!—yet this we know and see;
  • This Truth subdu’d your modest Member *Leigh.
  • The Man had Sense, and felt his own Disgrace,
  • How well an Aston wou’d supply his Place!
  • So represented, with such Leaders too,
  • (North—George—obsequious to your Lordship’s Cue.)
  • This War against ourselves will soon be won,
  • Odious America be soon undone.
  • Remonstrances are vain, Bute won’t relax,
  • But sternly bids North lay another Tax.
  • The Tax of Death, by Bayonet and Ball;
  • But Famine is the hardest Tax of all.
  • From Scotland, could that Thought derive its Source?
  • Where is sharp Famine felt with greater Force?
  • In all the Horrors there the Fiend’s array’d;
  • There her shrunk Hand for ever chills the Blade.
  • There, with lank Sides, the meagre Cattle moan;
  • Their Keeper asks for Bread and gets a Stone.
  • From this distress Bute and yourself soon fled,
  • Yet pour it’s plagues upon a Nation’s head.
  • By vilest means, my Lord, you seek vile ends;
  • Thus are you “just to virtue and her friends.
  • In all your strokes a master’s hand appears:
  • Stand forth—claim all your praise, and banish fears.
  • If Conscience dictates every ill you do,
  • Frankly expose the Knave you hide, to view.
  • Plebeians scorn—to gain your King’s applause,
  • Like base De Burgo, fawn and wrest the Laws.
  • Edition: current; Page: [147]
  • Dispise what faithful History shall say;
  • Full in your Zenith now, enjoy your Day;
  • Tho’ in Times annals your foul Name shou’d rust,
  • Whilst Fame to Holt’s erects lasting bust.
  • He had no *Smythe; no bias he had shown,
  • But dragg’d Assassins from behind the Throne.
  • Guardian of England’s Laws he gave ’em sway,
  • And held them forth for Sovereigns to obey.
  • Against the People’s Rights he took no part,
  • But judg’d, and counsell’d, with an honest Heart.
  • Prerogative (unpension’d and unbrib’d)
  • He kept within the bounds that Law prescrb’d,
  • By Freedom’s side he firmly took his stand,
  • Yet held the Ballance with an equal Hand.
  • Of that fair Plant he cherish’d ev’ry Shoot,
  • And, with a Parent’s fondness, nurs’d the Root.
  • His Name, whilst Law endures, shall live in Praise;
  • Ashby and White, no Mansfield can erase.
  • But you, my Lord, to Infamy still true,
  • Indulge your King’s Caprice in all you do.
  • If Citizens their humble Plaints express,
  • You bid him spurn the May’r, and his Address.
  • With pleasantry your Sov’reign’s heat asswage,
  • And arm him for the horned Cattle’s rage.
  • Edition: current; Page: [148]
  • Instruct him how to Speak, to Sneer, and Frown,
  • To try if Tricks will bear a City down:
  • To be astonish’d that one Voice shou’d sue
  • To turn a Tyrant from his Bloody-view.
  • Death is the Word—let loose the Dogs of Prey;
  • Burgoyne’s the Man, my Lord; encrease his Pay.
  • Your Heart’s well known; your Voice attention Draws;
  • Arise and vindicate your Master’s cause.
  • In Art supreme, in Perfidity not weak,
  • Show bashful Lordlings what it is to speak.
  • Let not such Fools as Suffolk, when they rise,
  • Without a word of English, snatch the Prize.
  • Shall Peers, whose Infamy is scarce half-blown,
  • Vaunt Mansfield’s Schemes, as if they were his own;
  • In Language, which no Grammar e’er equipp’d,
  • Language, for which a School-boy wou’d be whipp’d?
  • No.—Be yourself, my Lord; and unconfin’d,
  • Assert your Right of ruining Mankind.
  • Break forth in all your Ciceronian blaze,
  • And let your Front no more than Heart amaze.
  • Equal in Private and in Public shine,
  • And dare to be another Cataline.
  • Shou’d galling Junius make a new attack,
  • (Whose Lashes still are flagrant on your Back,)
  • The Libeller by some State blood-hound Trace,
  • And let him feel the Terrors of your Place.
  • Grafton in Friendship some sure Snare will lay,
  • As Friend, and Spy, he’ll join him and betray.
  • If precedent Injustice can anoint,
  • John Wilkes’s Case, will be a Case in point.
  • Then, make the Senate ring; like Pomfret rave;
  • And scorn by pension’d Proxies to enslave.
  • “Pomfret!—there’s Weight in what such Heads advise;
  • Madmen in council are to me a Prize.
  • Since Smith is Dead, Pomfret may be endured:
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  • We loose a Vote, shou’d the poor Man be cur’d.
  • Besides, he Speaks—in Sentiments unites,
  • He sometimes Raves and Stares, but never Bites.
  • “Granted, my Lord”—but yet (unknown to yield,
  • As your Troops are) why don’t you take the Field
  • In Person? Clear Suspicions, Doubts dispel:
  • No Lord contrives, abetts, or speaks, so well.
  • Does virtuous Camden talk your Spirit down,
  • Or Chatham awe you with a Roman frown?
  • When Patriot Rockingham, or Richmond rise,
  • Does Freedom’s ray annoy your dazzled Eyes?
  • Does Shelburne’s Boldness shake your dastard Soul?
  • Or Temple’s perseverance want Controul?
  • Can you, with Forces so well paid, and fed,
  • Despond, unless your Thane is at your Head?
  • Can you, his staunch Lieutenant Colonel, fail
  • In Senate, as in Council, to prevail?
  • Or is your Courage check’d in it’s Career,
  • Because you’ve lost five thousand Pounds a Year?
  • Long in Commission you had kept the Seals;
  • *Three Judges moving on your Lordship’s Wheels;
  • Their Mouths pronounc’d, but your’s prescrib’d the Law;
  • Thus have we Kings and Judges too, of Straw.
  • If ten such learn’d Triumvirates as that,
  • With all their Law will scarce make half a Pratt;
  • Who can behold (and not with Rage be stirr’d)
  • A Prætor sliver’d from the weakest Third?
  • This Thought of yours, my Lord, your Pow’r ensures,
  • The weaker the Man is, the more he’s yours.
  • In Council, Court, and Parliament we see
  • Your faithful Shadow moves as you decree;
  • Edition: current; Page: [150]
  • witness the *Cause of Thickness against Leigh.]
  • This Project shows your Machiavelian skill,
  • You’re Speaker thus (and more than Speaker) still.
  • Profoundly Politic in all you do,
  • Thus are you Chancellor and Speaker too.
  • Yet, when you can foresee an hard fought Day,
  • Like Falstaff, from your post you sneak away.
  • The risque your rag-o-muffin bands may share:
  • You (like your Thane) make Self your dearest Care.
  • Boldly you counsel underneath the Rose;
  • But fly the Conflict when the Armies close.
  • A War of Reason gives your Lordship pain:
  • Virtue alone such Conflicts can sustain.
  • Too free, too pure, to serve Oppression’s end,
  • She can’t mistake a Mansfield for a Friend.
  • Some few hard fronts can stand the shock of Steel,
  • But none the Thunder of the Public-Weal.
  • Ev’n JOVE himself, GREAT JOVE, can’t bear reproach,
  • Nor pass without a pannic in his Coach,
  • When to North’s smuggled Parliament he rides,
  • The God betraying what the Stoic hides.
  • Fain would he smile—shrill hoots his muscles check,
  • Then how he wishes England had one Neck!
  • At ev’ry Hiss he feels a conscious Start,
  • And Groans re-echo’d pierce his Tyrant-Heart;
  • A Heart, in infancy too soon ensur’d:
  • To slight those Ills his People have endur’d;
  • Harden’d by Female Insolence and Pride;
  • To Bute entrusted as it’s only Guide,
  • A Guide to what? not to the People’s Love,
  • (The safest Ground on which a King can move)
  • Edition: current; Page: [151]
  • Nor to the Path of Honour, Truth, or Fame,
  • In which our Edward’s won a glorious Name;
  • Not, with discernment, to enforce the Laws,
  • Or yield to Subjects in a *Righteous Cause;
  • To aid the just, to sooth the giddy Throng,
  • And wisely to distinguish right from wrong;
  • To temper Justice with an even Hand,
  • And drive Corruption from a sinking Land;
  • But train’d (alas!) to act the meanest part,
  • To speak a Language foreign to his heart,
  • To promise more than Briton’s ever hear’d,
  • Trusting to have his sacred Lyes rever’d;
  • To set his Honour and his soul to Sale,
  • As Water false, as courtly Sunshine frail;
  • In Theory well-School’d; in Practice taught
  • To be the sad reverse of what he ought.
  • Honour and Faith in Falshood’s, Stream he laves,
  • And toil’s to make a freeborn People Slaves.
  • Not so our great Deliver’r sought renown;
  • He knew from whom, and why, he had the Crown.
  • But now, the Globe and Scepter’s held for show,
  • Bute, says that ||Craft is all a King should know;
  • Quotes bright examples from each Stuart’s reign;
  • To such a Scholar not one Hint’s in vain.
  • A Just Petition’s answer’d with a sneer;
  • And to secure his point, he drops a Tear.
  • Unhappy York! Too fickle to resist!
  • Alas! thy Death encreas’d the Tyrants List!
  • Not to be won by all that Sense could try,
  • You fell by water from the weakest Eye!
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  • If *Hypocrites are Murd’rers, who shall dare
  • To excuse that Guilt, which bare-fac’d thanks declare?
  • When harmless Lives were lost, and Rome was burn’d,
  • NERO, in form his grateful thanks return’d;
  • Happy to have a cool, obedient Scot
  • Perform his bloody Orders to a jot;
  • Happy to find two more so bravely warm’d,
  • So hot for Blood, to stab one Youth unarm’d.
  • O! when in British Annals shall this blot
  • Of Sanguinary Power be forgot!
  • Never whilst this corrupt and bloody Reign
  • Shall Furnish a Record of Slaves and Slain.
  • Never whilst brave America can feel
  • The Sense of wrongs, or the redress of Steel:
  • Never whilst Liberty and Right Divine,
  • Mark the vile Stuart from the Brunswick Line.
  • Behold! what Bute’s long-labour’d Culture brings,
  • A King of Patches! And a shame to Kings!
  • A Baby! who is humour’d till he thinks
  • That Water sacred, which a Monarch drinks.
  • Taught that the height of Piety’s to kneel,
  • He says his pray’rs and bids the Vulgar feel.
  • Let meaner Souls relent, forgive forget;
  • Such Weakness ne’er disgrac’d a Stuart yet.
  • No—let the Slave that thwarts US be undone,
  • Long live the Mother in the Tyrant Son!
  • Thus lectures Bute,—and this advice embrac’d,
  • All Sense of Virtue in the Bud’s effac’d,
  • How shou’d King’s see in infancy made blind?
  • Whose Manhood’s watch’d, whose Knowledge is confin’d?
  • To whom no page in History’s reveal’d,
  • Edition: current; Page: [153]
  • But where they find the Subject’s Cause appeal’d
  • To Heav’n?—this same Redress Carte’s Volumes teach;
  • These George may read—these Bute and Mansfield preach.
  • True to his trust the Thane his task begun;
  • He pleas’d the Mother and he dup’d the Son.
  • Taught him to fly above the legal Sphere,
  • And by sad Charles’s Star his Course to steer;
  • To bear no Counsel, no sage hint, no Guide;
  • But think all Subjects born for King’s to ride;
  • By *Famine brave resistance to entomb,
  • And (with Macbeth) to “leap the life to come”;
  • To wait no Tide, attend no rising Gale,
  • But rashly spread Prerogative’s full sail:
  • To heed no Subject in his bold careers,
  • But Passive Pensioners and rotten Peers.
  • To spare no Life, if poignant Satyr strikes;
  • To Plan the Death of him he most dislikes;
  • Waiting impatient for the setting Sun,
  • To hear good news from Martyn and from Dun.
  • To give in jest a Coronation Pledge,
  • Nor think an Oath more sacred than a Wedge.
  • Alas! that Off’ring shou’d suggest a Thought,
  • That Charity by former Kings was wrought;
  • That, from the royal Cradle to the Grave,
  • The truest Piety’s to guard and save.
  • Such Acts as these to Crowns a Lustre lend;
  • This, Mansfield, this is being “Virtues Friend.
  • But, when Destruction is a King’s Command,
  • And Death gains Passports from the royal Hand;
  • When Carnage is the Word—when gen’rous Gage,
  • Dreads that his Name shou’d blot th’historic Page,
  • And, with a Tenderness his Prince will blame,
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  • Shrinks from rank Murder, and eternal Shame;
  • When Conscience and Remorse from Court is flown,
  • Nor dare sollicit a despotic Throne;
  • All must be Slaves, till Spirit shall return,
  • To fire those Bosoms where it us’d to burn;
  • Till we consider Names far less than Things,
  • Nor care from what sound Stem we take our Kings;
  • Till scepter’d Pride is taught to bless the Hand
  • That calls her to protect a gen’rous Land;
  • Is taught that British Monarchs owe their State,
  • To those who can depose them or create;
  • Provok’d, insult’d, spurn’d can spare, or try;
  • Or throw, with Scorn, their royal Creature by.
  • Bute! Mansfield! These are Doctrines which appear
  • Horrid and Harsh to your distemper’d Ear;
  • But there will come a Time when you shall rue
  • That e’er you counsell’d with a Heart untrue:
  • When from those Counsels deadly Fueds shall rise
  • To force a Tear unfeign’d from George’s Eyes.
  • Truth ev’n on Kings in that sad Hour attends:
  • Charles found, at last, his People were his Friends;
  • To Notions, false as Friends, he bid adieu;
  • These had deceiv’d; the Block spoke plain, but true.
  • Ne’er may a Brunswick taste such bitter Fruit,
  • But leave the Axe to Mansfield, North, and Bute.
  • These Lines, inspir’d by Churchill’s laurell’d Shade,
  • I write, unknown, unpatronized, unpaid:
  • Proud, if my honest Muse, by chance, has cropp’d
  • One Flow’r from that fair Wreath which Churchill dropp’d.
  • Let Johnson toil for Hire, with Falsehoods please;
  • (North’s Fiat feeds, and dubbs him with Degrees.)
  • His be the Shame; the gen’rous Transport mine,
  • To goad a Villain’s Heart at ev’ry Line.
  • Disdaining Pidlers, who for Flowret’s roam,
  • Like Brutus, rough, I’ll plant the Dagger Home.
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  • Tyrants and Traytors CASCA ne’er forgives;
  • Tremble such Monsters whilst that CASCA lives.
  • The Blasts he blows their guilty Souls shall shock,
  • And drive them to perdition and the Block.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [156] Edition: current; Page: [157]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

Casca’s Epistle to LORD NORTH

  • ita digerit omnia Cælchas.
  • VIR.1
  • If sad Britannia wails, in deep Distress,
  • Her Taxes greater and her Freedom less:
  • She owes these Grievances to Bute’s vile Tribe,
  • North’s Dissolution, and a Treas’ry Bribe.
    • To you my Lord, these honest Lines I send;
    • To you the Sov’reign’s not the People’s Friend.
    • The Sov’reign’s Friend? yes, when I think again,
    • A Friend like Wolsey in a Harry’s reign.2
    • Edition: current; Page: [158]
    • Harry, who gave his Royal Lusts full scope;
    • Commenc’d a Devil and renounc’d the Pope.
    • In Bute and North two Devils make us groan,
    • And at Quebec the Pope resumes his Throne.
    • Harry’s despotic Frowns o’er cast us now;
    • Fate hangs on Bute’s proud Will and George’s Brow.
    • Below, North represents absconding Bute,
    • Above, a *Nation dyes by Roy le veut.
    • Proud of North’s Name Corruption wears no Veil;
    • At North’s soft Bribe, no Senator turns Pale.
    • Shrew’d Walpole never went your Lordship’s length;
    • But Boldness with supplies has gather’d strength.
    • Safe from Impeachments in this venal Time,
    • Each Parricide may triumph in his Crime.
    • Knaves in your Lordship’s Numbers put their hope;
    • Lords fear no AX, and Commoners no ROPE,
    • Virtue’s fair Dawn you’ve clouded with a Sum;
    • And check’d her Test for Seven Years to come.
    • Association is a dreadful Sound;
    • And Bute must dye if Virtue is not bound.
    • Shou’d Tests ensue; Impeachments wou’d take place,
    • And old St. Stephen wear an Honest Face.
    • What must be done?—“dissolve, crys Bute in Fits:
    • Dissolve—and stab your Country with new Writs.”
    • He spoke: and North obedient to his Voice,
    • With Gold prepar’d his Boroughs for their Choice.
    • Appriz’d his Members of the dex’trous Cheat,
    • And plac’d Corruption in her former Seat.
    • Crouching she licks the Hand by which she’s fed,
    • And Joys to see Sir Fletcher 3 at her Head;
    • Edition: current; Page: [159]
    • To see North ape Bute’s dictatorial Nod,
    • For George deserts his Country and his GOD.
    • To see her Sons alert when North Commands,
    • And at his beck lift up Four Hundred Hands.
    • But whence this mighty influence? whence this Pow’r?
    • All Virtue’s delug’d in a golden Show’r
    • A Treas’ry Storm what Virtue can resist?
    • Ev’n George to drown her, dips his Civil List.
    • With Thirst hydropic all North’s Patriots drink,
    • And half a Million scarce will make’ em sink.
    • From craving more no Decency restrains,
    • At once they Poison and exhaust our Veins.
    • Let those, who feel the Civil List decrease,
    • Call on Mountstewart to restore his Fleece.
    • Father and Son are equally a Curse:
    • One dupes the Sov’reign, and one drains the Purse.
    • In Baubles and douceurs what Treasures fly?
    • How are the People plunder’d to supply!
    • Elegance lavish’d on a SCOT is vain,
    • A Hovel might content an Embryo Thane.
    • His Ancestors (this Truth is Wormwood now,)
    • Whose Hut contain’d their Wife, their Bairns, and Cow,
    • Thought e’er their Union taught their Pride to feel,
    • A Pounde in Siller was a muckle deale.
    • But since Scots felt the Blessings of that Law,
    • Which laid their Thanes on Down instead of Straw,
    • Bless’d them with Commerce, Arts, and all their Fruits,
    • And bade them herd no longer with their Brutes;
    • By Culture humaniz’d their Savage mind,
    • And plac’d them on a footing with Mankind;
    • Their haughty Sons who else had fed on Grass,
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    • Or filch’d for hunger, Thistles from their Ass,
    • Shiv’ring on Mountains desolate and cold,
    • Strangers alike to luxury and Gold,
    • Forgetting, like their Sires, Want’s bitter Sting,
    • Disdain the *Palace of an English King;
    • Demand supurb additions, vast expence,
    • To fit it for a Lordlings Residence.
    • O! Shame! where art thou fled!—ye Britons, rise!
    • Is it for Bute’s pround Race you grant Supplies?
    • With just Resentment bid Mountstewart fly,
    • And feed his Pride beneath his Father’s Sky;
    • There pinch on Rocks where barren Nature sleeps;
    • Yes—scourge him back to his paternal Nieps.
    • Weak Sov’reigns, thus their artful Minions bless;
    • Ask what they dare their constant answer’s YES.
    • When injur’d Subjects with Petitions go,
    • The Sov’reign, low’ring, looks an haughty NO.
    • Yet if his Kingship wants a fresh Supply,
    • Below—aye, aye,—above, Contents the cry.
    • Petitioners with Rebels are involv’d;
    • Let Bute but hint—the Parliaments dissolv’d.
    • This influence BECKFORD labour’d to resist?
    • Corruption, was maintain’d, and HE dismiss’d.
    • Cities Petition, yet their Plague endures;
    • But Virtues rage ||quick Dissolution cures.
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    • Say (for you know, my Lord,) the Cause of this,
    • You know who Counsels and who Acts amiss.
    • Disguise no Truth by Specious, trite harangue;
    • But say, at once your Parliament’s a Gang.
    • If Truth’s a Crime, and George’s frown you dread,
    • Say in a Whisper who is at their Head?
    • That Question’s home—your Lordship’s silent still—
    • l’ll answer it myself then—frown who will.
    • In ancient Days when simple Monarchs saw
    • No better means by reigning than by law,
    • When sages counsell’d with an honest Heart,
    • And Kings religiously perform’d their part;
    • E’er Standing Armies were a standing Curse,
    • Subjects were Children, and their King a Nurse;
    • No Suitor unredress’d then left the Throne;
    • The Nurse’s Interest and the Child’s were one.
    • The three Estates then us’d to coalesce,
    • With no Intention but to save and bless.
    • Now Kings, Lords and Commons, faithfully agree,
    • Like a Banditti, in Confed’racy.
    • Combin’d to plunge a Nation in distress,
    • To double Grievances without redress.
    • In vain to GEORGE the suppliant Knee is bent;
    • He enjoins silence, suffering, and content*.
    • With sullen gloom he arm’s his sulky brow,
    • And tell us Slav’ry is our CHARTER now.
    • ASTONISH’D at his City’s daring cries,
    • He tells ’em Kings and Parliaments are wise.
    • Tells ’em their Constitution is controul;
    • That of all Trades oppression is the Soul;
    • Edition: current; Page: [162]
    • That their Protection hangs on Royal breath;
    • To Day ’tis slav’ry and to Morrow Death.
    • That all are REBELS, but that Passive Tribe,
    • Who kiss his Chains, his Footstool and his Bribe.
    • That ev’ry Subject’s Trayterous in his View,
    • Who dares petition, meet, consult or sue.
    • These Sentiments are Bute’s by Mansfield penn’d;
    • Mansfield who tells us he is Virtues Friend.*
    • This Doctrine good my Lord, full scope affords,
    • To your vile Commons and your supple Lords.
    • Since ev’ry Act brings forth some Grievance new,
    • Enlarge the narrow bounds of Treason too.
    • Like Mary’s Minion in her Tyrant Reign,
    • Enlarge Old Edwards Act amend, explain,
    • Shew Edward’s Sages they mistook the Case;
    • Declare new Treasons—’tis an Act of Grace.
    • Declare it Treason but to wish Success
    • To Freedom’s Arms, or Supplicate redress;
    • Work your new Doctor’s Insult into Fact;
    • ’Tis Johnson’s Thought, so call it Johnson’s Act.
    • Go farther still, and stop the teeming Press;
    • If wishing’s Treason, writing is no less.
    • Safe in your Votes, Corruption now invites:
    • This is your Time—Lop off the Hand that writes.
    • By Libels full of Truth, your Mansfield bleeds,
    • And Bute still dreads Impeachement’s swelling Seeds.
    • Preserve your Sov’reign in Tyrannic Health;
    • Nor let him read the CRISIS but by Stealth.
    • No Quarter to that whiggish CRISIS give;
    • Edition: current; Page: [163]
    • But let the Tory Patriot’s*Falsehoods live.
    • Let Johnson’s Sheets attract the Monarch’s Eye;
    • There he may see how Knaves well Paid can lye.
    • In Johnson’s Tenets let him read his own;
    • That Kings are born to laugh whilst Subjects groan;
    • That Power is their’s in Supplication’s spite;
    • Whatever They and Heav’n inflict, is right.
    • When Kings for wanton Slaughter give the Word,
    • Subjects are bound to fall upon their Sword.
    • When Kings by Famine choose their Slaves shou’d dye;
    • Those Slaves must drop without an asking Eye.
    • So much for Life—to claim our own is vain:
    • Like Montesquieu they fancy who complain.
    • What has a Slave? nor Fire, nor Cloaths, nor Meat;
    • Not for themselves they’re warm’d, or cloath’d, or eat;
    • But to defend their Master in his Pride;
    • Their Sov’reign; who may Tax their very Hide.
    • Flay off their Skin in Wantonness and Sport,
    • Or send an Order for their Heads from Court.
    • Shou’d Freedom’s odious Form presume to rise,
    • North makes a Motion, and the Phantom flies.
    • Mansfield and Bute the murd’rous Bill invent,
    • North brings it in—’tis pass’d—and gains Assent.
    • No Tax, no Pain, no Penalty’s too much;
    • All are thrice hallow’d by the Scepter’s touch.
    • Thus by no Tyranny the Slave’s oppress’d;
    • The Means are sacred, and the End is bless’d.
    • He’s the best Subject who most prostrate lyes,
    • He’s the true Patriot who submits and dyes.
    • Thus Johnson Writes:—at Court his Works have praise;
    • No Resolution-Whims in George’s Days!
    • Edition: current; Page: [164]
    • Thus frantic Savages present their Breast,
    • To pointed Lightnings, with false Zeal possess’d;
    • Behold th’ Enthusiasts all Jove’s rage invoke;
    • And he’s the Happiest who receives the Stroke.
    • O mighty King! wise Council! righteous Throne!
    • Where Freedom, Property, nor Life’s our own.
    • Britons, adore this Sun, that gilds your Days;
    • Surround St. James’s with new Songs of Praise.
    • Let Wilkes no more, like Beckford’s Ghost,4 arise,
    • And with Petitions sear his Sov’reign’s Eyes.
    • For wrong’d America let Pity cease,
    • Let all her Sons be massacr’d in Peace.
    • Those Minds, says George, which Sympathy can stir,
    • In blackest Treason with his Foes concurr.
    • Those are his Foes; Bute’s, North’s, and Mansfield’s too,
    • Who of their Actions take too near a View.
    • Demand the Cause why Sword or Famine drinks
    • Bostonian-blood?—Crys Johnson, Boston thinks;
    • Thinks as her cursed Ancestors were us’d,
    • By whom our martyr Charles was so abus’d.
    • O glorious Martyrdom! henceforth appear
    • The Joyous Feast of ev’ry future Year.
    • Blest be those Shades! who taught our Kings to dread
    • No Loss of Honour like a Loss of Head!
    • ’Tis that alone, my Lord, that can restrain
    • Kings and their Minions in a Tyrant-Reign.
    • The Good or Ill their Ministers may do,
    • Arises always from the Point in view.
    • Their darling Aim gives Life to their Designs;
    • Now vacates Patents, and now watches Mines.
    • Edition: current; Page: [165]
    • To Day, supplants a Bentinck in his Right,
    • And backs mean Lowther in a legal Fight;
    • The Board of Customs by Direction meet
    • To morrow, and pronounce Sir James a Cheat.
    • For why? of late Sir James too restive draws;
    • To scourge him North pretends a public Cause.
    • Now for Sir James, in Patents *picking Holes,
    • And now against him for his Frauds in Coals.
    • Thus we discern the Justice of the State;
    • That Kings and Ministers breathe Life or Fate;
    • Petitions as rebellious are withstood;
    • Whilst Spleen is gratify’d for Public good.
    • Beware the Goal, my Lord, nor drive too high;
    • Kings dare be Tyrants, but they durst not dye.
    • ’Tis a nice Conduct that can steer between
    • King’s Lusts, Mens Rights, and Ills that intervene.
    • When godlike Kings (like Alfred)5 give Assent
    • To all that can relieve, assist, content;
    • When Justice by the royal Touch gains force,
    • And Virtue is supported in her Course;
    • When regal Power is for a Blessing us’d,
    • And Mercy like the Beams of Heav’n dissus’d;
    • Then Righteousness and Truth surround the Throne;
    • Then Kings are Ministers that Heav’n may own.
    • By Day their presence gives all Hearts delight,
    • Edition: current; Page: [166]
    • And ev’ry Subject is their *guard by Night.
    • But when inflate with Pride they Ape the God;
    • Affect to damp Addresses with a Nod;
    • Check and o’er bear the humble Suiter’s Claim,
    • And give to Liberty, vile Treason’s Name;
    • When in their Face and Words the Tyrant’s reigns,
    • And Free-born Subjects must receive their Chains;
    • When you, my Lord, behold this daring Scene;
    • With caution steer your little Bark between
    • The Sov’reign’s and the Subject’s side;
    • On a rough Sea behold each Vessel ride,
    • This mann’d by Freedom, that by Tyrant Pride.
    • Beware, my Lord; nor with a Bravo’s boast,
    • Trust your small Pennace from the safer Coast.
    • Send Sandwich out, whose Tongue so vilely runs
    • And bid Clay Harvey, whip him to the Guns.
    • See what the Mansfield, or the Bute can do,
    • When Freedom’s Fleet triumphant bears in view.
    • Hark!—England tells you that she will be Free:
    • Your servile Force turns pale; your Commons flee.
    • Mark well the Conflict, Lord; lament the shock;
    • If England conquers, you must kiss the BLOCK.
    • See, like a Coward, how the Mansfield flies!
    • At the first Fire, BUTE, and Corruption, dies,
    • Against a Nation’s Rage what Force can stand?
    • Your hirling Army’s lessen’d to a Band.
    • Your venal Commoners, your vaunting Lords,
    • (How great a Change the fate of War affords!)
    • Your IDOL too, and IDOL now no more,
    • Kneel before those whose Suits they spurn’d before;
    • Edition: current; Page: [167]
    • Not now insulting in despotic Strains.
    • But bound in wrong’d Britannia’s awful Chains.
    • Then her stern Lion rousing from her Den,
    • Shall treat pale Tyrants as they now treat Men.
    • Minions and Traytors, in the Wreck be hurl’d,
    • And Injur’d Subjects see a better World.

No. XIX. will be addressed to the KING.6

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

  • Sero sapiunt Phryges.1
  • False to yourselves, the People and the State,
  • Like Foolish Phrygians, you’ll grow Wise too late.

A DMINISTRATION has now “let slip the Dogs of War, the hellish Cerberus, with her three Heads,2 BURGOYNNE, HOWE, and CLINTON, is sailed. The dogmatic Goose Quil of the sallacious Dr. Johnson, that hireling Quixote of an hireling Ministry, has promulgated a solemn Sentence of Attainder against all Revolutionists in Great Britain;—Hear it ye WHIGS,

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  • “And put in ev’ry honest Hand a Whip,
  • To lash the Rascal naked thro’ the World.”

This pitiful Retailer of Apologies for MINISTERIAL TREACHERY, has had the Impudence to declare with the Effrontery of a SANDWICH, or a DENBIGH, that whoever wishes Success to AMERICA is a Traytor to his Country.

From this patriotic Declaration, I presume the redoubted Doctor is at length admitted into the Arcana of the Ministry. He pronounces with as much insolence as if he was assured of their Intentions to pass a Bill, (they have Voices enough to do it,) for declaring a New Species of Treason, namely, the wishing Success to oppressed America. I will venture to say, that every Revolutionist in England, Ireland, and the Sugar Colonies, have long since incurred the Pains and Penalties of this Law in Embryo, if such a One there be.

No Englishman can wear two Faces: Therefore if his MAJESTY, should for the future, see as much ill Humour and Contempt in the Faces of his English and Irish Subjects, as they observe in his, he must not be surprized. BUTE and MANSFIELD, will instruct him that the Aspects and Affections of a People are beneath the Notice of a Sovereign who inherits them. But Conscience in the Depth of Night, will speak another Language, that will remind him, that he has rejected the Supplications of Millions in AMERICA, that has at length assented to their MURDER, that he has with an Iron Tongue and an Iron Heart, rung the Knell of expiring AMERICA.

It is a Maxim of our Law, (says the honest Chancellor FORTESCUE) that no Man was ever yet condemned or sentenced by the Mouth of the King himself.—’tis not so now,—the present Sovereign has been advised to declare preemptoraly to his Supplicating Citizens of London, that, “he is determined to pursue the Measures which his wise Parliament have Edition: current; Page: [171] recommended.” We know that these are not conciliating but destructive Measures: Under these Measures AMERICA is either to be destroyed, or lost for ever to this Nation.

The late Royal Answer to the PETITION of the City of London, fairly interpreted, would run thus: Let it speak the Language of Despotism in despotic Terms: viz. “SLAVES, by daring thus to remind US of our OPPRESSIONS in America, you are yourselves TRAITORS; by this libellous Petition you aid and encourage REBELS. It is the Duty of loyal Subjects passively to obey our Will. Our Will and Pleasure is REVENGE. This Resolve we think fit to notify by FAMINE and the SWORD: These are the lenient Measures, which our Divan has advised, and these we will pursue. Your Confidence and Affection we despise, we confide alone in the Wisdom of our Divan, by that great Council your fancied Rights and your despicable Commerce are wisely doomed, with our entire Concurrence, to DESTRUCTION.”

Thus we see how easily a deluded Christian Prince, may speak the Language of an Eastern Tyrant; for this Purpose we have fairly cloathed an Eastern Spirit, in an Eastern Garb; we have given the haughty Sovereign’s plain Meaning in proper Words; we have not (like Mansfield, who penned the vile Harrangue) meanly suffered the Sentiments of an insolent Mogul to be cramped by the Poverty of Princely Diction.

Upon Bute’s and Mansfield’s Plans, Sovereigns are Divine Viceregents, sent down from Heaven, not in Mercy, but in Wrath, to indulge their own impious Lusts, and Scourge Mankind. Let such Sovereigns, therefore, be consistent with themselves; let them equally disdain the Fetters of Language and Humanity—Let them speak DAGGERS to their People, and Salvation to their MINIONS. But can such a Prince, conscious that his Parliament has been infamously smuggled, by a mean and execrable Stretch of the Prerogative, (a sudden Dissolution) For fear of a National ASSOCIATION against future Treachery; conscious that the Majority of his and his Minister’s great Council (it is no national Council) are a Set of Hirelings, filched into their Seats, and corrupted to promote every despotic Lust of a deluded MONARCH; can such a conscious Prince pronounce the Doom of Millions, Edition: current; Page: [172] not only without Emotion, but with composed Stupidity? This is not Fortitude, but Callosity of Soul.

The whole European World is astonished at our Persecution of AMERICA, even Foreign, and despotic Princes, upon this Occasion, have different Feelings, from the FATHER of that People who are destined to Destruction: Even Princes, who can send forth Sword and Famine by a NOD, are astonished at our wicked Policy and abhor it; even the natural Enemies of Great Britain presume to interfere with our INFERNAL ADMINISTRATION, they will not permit our Government (without Reproaches, Insults, Threats, and animated Declarations) to Massacre MANKIND: France, under the Mask of Humanity, presumes to make us sensible of her great Condescension, Magnanimity, and Moderation, in suffering AMERICAN MURDER to pass on freely and without Controul, She makes us understand that She connives at this Slaughter of our Gallant Subjects for the Sake of cultivating a good Understanding with the King of Great Britain, and the whole English Nation. But when She finds (as She shortly may) that this KING and Kingdom are divided and trying the Claim of FREEDOM together in the Field, will FRANCE, who professes so much Magnanimity and Moderation, remain Neuter? Her Humanity, her Honour will not Suffer her. She will retaliate our former Interpositions in her Government with the like Strokes of Political Humanity. Spain, who has so lately felt the Force of English Arms, will not permit us to turn them so unnaturally against oursleves. She speaks in plainer Terms: Let his persevering Majesty hear her Humane Menaces; She tells him boldly, that She will not tye up her Hands from relieving Fellow Creatures suffering under wanton unprovoked Oppression. Alas! Blind, infatuated Sovereign. Canst thou not discern the Tendency of this Artful Spanish Declaration? Does not Spain already hold out Succour to AMERICA? Will not Injured and Despairing People embrace the Offer? Will they not rather submit to be aided by an Enemy than MURDERED by a PARENT? Will they not sooner Change their Names, their Laws, their Government, their Religion, in just Resentment, than enjoy these flattering Modes, these Sounding Nothings in a State of Slavery?—Think again, Wise Sire, before it is too late. Let Edition: current; Page: [173] me ask Thee, thou Clement Pious SOVEREIGN,3 are not the People, in whose Favour Spain hath thus declared, thy Fellow Creatures also? Were they not under the just Reign of your lamented Grandfather, your Fellow Subjects too? Could he arise, one Honest Frown from him, would disperse your MINIONS, annihilate your Pride, blast your execrable Politics, and restore Peace, Commerce, and Protection, to the tottering Constitution of the BRITISH EMPIRE.

The Spanish Nation is brave, her Pretext for interposing is a noble one; tho merely Political, it is to be preferred to that which is Tyrannical; it has, at least, a plausible Appearance, for it speaks the Language of Justice, Benevolence, and Humanity. We find neither of these Ingredients in the rigid Answer which lately repelled the Petition of the City. Fas est et ab hoste doceri.4

Let Bute and Mansfield, the Leaders of an INFAMOUS ADMINISTRATION, let their great Council their Parliament (l say again it is not the Nation’s) let the Head Constable of this Kingdom (the Dupe of all the Herd) for once receive Instruction from an Enemy. The Spaniards distinguish justly between a Sovereign’s Right of reducing refractory Subjects to just Obedience, and making War upon humble Supplicants who Petition for their RIGHTS. They discern a difference (and there is a wide One) between just Resistance and unnatural Rebellion. They tell us in Manly (to America they are tempting) Terms that America shall not Suffer unheared, unpitied, unredressed, and Innocent. Tho’a venal and Corrupt Majority, to gratify despotic Spleen, have in a BLOODY ACT, styled America Rebellious, yet what Sanction Edition: current; Page: [174] can such Laws derive from Venality and Corruption? Laws, to be Sacred and obligatory must be consistent with the Laws of God, Nature, Reason, sound Policy and the Constitution of the Kingdom. If they err in these respects it is an Error in the first Concoction, they are absolutely Null and void in themselves, and are no more to be regarded than “the Laws of a parcel of Drunken Porters.” I borrow this Elegant Comparison from the Mouth of a Great Man, who is, at one and the same Time, a privey Counsellor, a Pensioner, a Placeman, and Speaker of the House of Commons. Situations as compatible with that of Speaker, as Obligatory Laws are with Venality and Corruption.

I do not say that Rebellious Subjects are not to be chastised; but they must first Rebel, all Civil Chastisment besides, must be inflicted by the Hand of Wisdom and Justice, not by the Scourge of the Oppressor. The Wanton Power that Aggresses and Afflicts ought not to Punish, but Redress. What Political Wisdom is there in driving a whole Territory, a Great Nation of Obedient (tho’ not Passive) Subjects to Despair? What Wisdom in losing or exterminating? What Justice in refusing to hear the supposed Delinqnent before She turned SUPPLICATION into RAGE.

AMERICA professes all legal, but like the BRAVE ANCESTRY from whence she Springs, difdains passive Obedience, she honours and revers KINGS, but despises and defys TYRANTS.

If she conquers she will continue to support the Liberty she wins, if she falls, (believe me ye WRETCHED, ye SHALLOW MINISTERIAL POLITICIANS!) she will not fall unrevenged, the Crowns of France and Spain, will not continue neuter, they will be the providential means of punishing our Iniquity to AMERICA; they will embroil a CIVIL WAR here, and assist it there, they will conquer ENGLAND in AMERICA, they will be received there with open Arms; in the last Agonies of AMERICAN DESPAIR, They will be received as CONQURERS, and usurping TYRANNY, will be expelled for ever.

AMERICA will never condescend to enjoy the unessential Name of ENGLISHMEN under the Lawless Power, of a GRAND MOGUL, and his detested Divan.

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Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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To be continued Weekly.

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To the KING.


LIKE that fell Monster, and infernal TYRANT Charles the First, you are determined to Deluge the Land with INNOCENT BLOOD. Fired with Rage at the more than Savage Barbarity of your Mercenary Troops, your cursed Instruments of Slaughter in America, I can no longer keep within the Bounds of Decency; the Breast of every true Englishman must be filled with Indignation, and that Respect which is due to a King, will be lost in a noble zeal for the Preservation of our Country and Fellow Subjects.

Every Man must execrate a Tyrant, who can, without Remorse to satiate his Revenge, and gratify his lust of Power destroy Millions of his Subjects.

The Americans, Sir, are fighting for LIBERTY, the Birthright of every Man. they are fighting for the LAWS and the sacred CONSTITUTION of their Country, which you are, to your eternal Disgrace and Infamy, endeavouring to Destroy: Their Cause is just, it is the Cause of Heaven, and it never will be your Power, assisted by TEN THOUSAND Legion Edition: current; Page: [178] of TYRANTS besides, to fix your BLOODY Standard of Tyranny in America. England must take Part in this Bloody, this Unnatural CIVIL WAR, brought on through your Baseness and Ingratitude, and the Treachery, Corruption, and Villainy of your MINIONS; unless she does this, she is lost forever, your unrelenting Cruelty, and desire of being Absolute, will never let you stop, and if once the Americans can be reduced to Slavery, we shall be no longer FREE; you will not, you cannot rest, till you have brought the whole Empire into the same State of Vassalage and Bondage: But I hope for the Honour and Valour of my Countrymen, all your infamous Designs will be frustrated, and that by a Noble Exertion, in defence of their persecuted Brethren in America, they will soon CONVINCE you, how Difficult, Unsafe, and Dangerous it is to ATTEMPT to enslave a Brave and Free People, and to establish your Throne in INIQUITY and BLOOD.

I hope fired with the noble Spirit of their Ancestors, they will speedily carry to the Throne, something more than Petitions or Remonstrances; I trust they will tell you in manly Terms, in Terms, worthy of Britons; in Terms that may shake your Tyrant S—that they are determined to be FREE, that you SHALL withdraw your Troops from AMERICA; that your Ministers SHALL be delivered up to Justice, as some atonement for the Blood that has been inhumanly shed in England and America; that they WILL have all their Rights confirmed to them; that they WILL be governed by the LAWS of the Land, and not by the Arbitrary WILL of you or your Minions; that without these JUST and NECESSARY Requisitions are complied with, they are determined to appeal to Heaven, and OBLIGE you, as their Forefathers have other PRINCELY TYRANTS to govern according to Law and the SOLEMN OATH you took at your Coronation.

Englishmen, Sir, will soon be roused by the inhuman Slaughter of their Brethren and Fellow Subjects in America, from a state of Lethergy and Supineness; it will not be long in the Power of your infernal Tribe of Placemen and Pensioners, your Ministers and Minions, by all the Acts of Corruption and Debauchery to keep down the Glorious Spirit of LIBERTY; they will not, they cannot, if there is any Virtue in the Nation, Edition: current; Page: [179] longer remain idle inactive Spectators of such CRUEL and BLOODY Measures, in which they are so nearly, so deeply Interested; Measures which must end in the Destruction of LIBERTY and the Constitution, the Boast and Glory of this, and the Envy of every other Nation.

Your whole Reign has been one continued series of Tyranny, Oppression, Cruelty, and Injustice; the whole Business of your Ministers has been to deny right to the People, to sap the Constitution, to establish arbitrary Power upon the Ruins of PUBLIC LIBERTY in every part of the British Dominions; to feed your Avarice, to gratify your Ambition, and Satiate your Revenge against Individuals.

A King, weak, obstinate, perverse, and Cruel, deaf to the calls of Humanity, and regardless of the Sufferings of an oppressed, injured, and loyal People, disgraces the Dignity of human Nature; and is so far from possessing any of those Attributes which characterise Majesty, that he is only a Monster in human Shape, like the Devil, invested with Power, not for the Preservation, but the Destruction of Mankind.

The Breath of a TYRANT blasts and Poisons every thing, changes Blessings and Plenty into Curses and Misery, great Cities and flourishing Kingdoms, into Desarts, and gloomy Solitudes, and their rich Citizens into Beggars and Vagabonds. I could name Cities, which, while they governed THEMSELVES, could maintain Armies, and now enslaved, can scarce maintain the Poor proud Rascals who govern them. It is certain, that whatever Country or Place is subdued by a Prince, who governs by his WILL, is ruined by his Government.

You, Sir, like most other Princes, have been long introducing the Turkish Government into Europe; and have succeeded so well, that I would rather live under the Turk, than under the Tyranny of George the Third. You practice the inhuman Cruelties and Oppressions of the Turks, and want the tolerating Spirit of the Turk, and if you are not soon checked through the native bravery of Englishmen, the whole Polity of savage Turkey, will be established by you in all its Parts and Barbarity; as if the Depopulation which is already so quick, and taking such dreadful Strides, were still too slow.

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TYRANTS are the common Destroyers of Mankind; they are for ever inventing now Machines of Cruelty, and will, till the Destruction of Mankind is completed. They seem to think they shall have Enemies as long as one Man remains, who cannot be made a SLAVE. But it is astonishing at first view, that ENGLISHMEN should have so long borne your Tyranny, Oppressions, and the unrelenting Slaughter of their Fellow Subjects:—But, alas! who knows not the force of Corruption, Delusion, and standing Armies.

Oh Liberty! Oh Servitude! How detestable are the different Sounds! LIBERTY is Salvation in Politicks, as SLAVERY is Reprobation; neither is there any other Distinction but that of Saint and Devil, between the Champion of the one and of the other.

No one can sufficiently shew the glorious Advantages of LIBERTY, nor set off the dreadful Mischiefs of raging, relentless, consuming TYRANNY.—A Task to which no human Mind is equal; for neither the sublimest wits of Antiquity, nor the brightest Genius’s of late or modern Times, assisted with all the Powers of Rhetoric, and all the Stimulations of Poetic fire, with the warmest and boldest Figures in Language, ever did, ever could, or ever can, describe and highten sufficiently, the Beauty of the one, or the Deformity of the other: Language fails in it, and Words are too weak.

Those who do not Groan under the Yoke of heavy and pointed Vassalage, cannot possibly have Images equal to a Calamity which they do not feel; and those which feel it, are stupefied by it, and their Minds depressed; nor can they have Conceptions large, bright, and comprehensive enough, to be fully Sensible of their own wretched Condition; much less can they Paint it in proper Colours to others. The People of England, Sir, who enjoy the Precious, Lovely, and invaluable blessing of LIBERTY, know that nothing can be paid too dear to purchase and preserve it. Without it the World is a Wilderness, and Life a Miserable Burthen: Death is a Tribute we all owe to Nature, and must pay; and it is infinitely preferable, in any shape to an ignominious Life: Nor can we restore our Being back again into the Hands of our great Creator, with more Glory to him, more Honour to ourselves, or more Advantage to Edition: current; Page: [181] Mankind, than in Defence of all that is valuable, religious, and praise worthy upon Earth.

How execrable then, and infamous are the Wreches, who for a few precarious momentary, and perhaps imaginary Advantages, would rob their Country for ever of every thing that can render Life desirable; and for a little tinsel Pageantry and survile Homage, unworthy of honest Men, and hated by wise Men, would involve Millions of their Fellow Creatures in lasting Misery, Bondage and Woe; such unnatural royal Parricides, unworthy of the human Shape and Name, would fill up the Measure of their Barbarity by entailing Poverty, Chains, and Sorrow, upon their own Posterity. And, Sir, you ought to remember such Tyrants have UNPITIED, suffered in their OWN PERSONS, the sad effects of those cruel Councils and Schemes, which they intended for the Ruin of all but themselves and their Minions; and have JUSTLY fallen into that Pit they had TRAITEROUSLY digged for others.

  • He that can levy WAR with all Mankind,
  • Can cut his Subjects Throats, and fell his Friend;
  • Ravish the Chaste, the sanctifi’d Prophane,
  • Can pull down RIGHT, and wrong by FORCE maintain;
  • Mortgage his FAITH, and trample on his WORD,
  • And hew his Crown out by his LAWLESS Sword.
  • Like Nero suck the Blood that gave him Life,
  • And search engend’ring Nature with his Knife:
  • Like Cortez, can a hundred Millions slay,
  • Dream Death by Night, and finish it by Day:
  • Like pious Peter, cant of Heaven’s commands,
  • Pray with his Lips, and Murther with his Hands.
  • Can Sleep with BLOOD, and never start at CRIMES,
  • And make his Mischiefs like his Pow’r supreme.
  • By JUSTICE, sell OPPRESSION, bribe the LAW,
  • Exalt the Rogue, and Keep the Just in awe;
  • Embrace the GUILTY, Innocents Condemn,
  • And Execute without pretence of CRIME.
  • Can sacrifice WHOLE NATIONS to his Lust,
  • Edition: current; Page: [182]
  • With Pleasure KILL, and think that Pleasure just:
  • Can Burn and Sing, dance to the waving Flame,
  • And in his country’s Ashes raise his Fame;
  • Insult the Wretched, trample on the Poor,
  • And mock the Miseries Mankind endure;
  • Can ravage Countries, Property devour,
  • And trample Law beneath the Feet of Pow’r.
  • Scorn the restraint of OATHS, and promis’d Right,
  • And ravel Compacts in the Peoples fight;
  • With Indignation scorn to reign by Rules,
  • That King’s a TYRANT, and the People Fools.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [183]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.




IN the fewest Words I can possibly use (for I will not waste many upon you, who are as callous as your Tyrannic Master) I most heartily congratulate your Lordship upon the honourable Retreat of your unnatural and savage Mercenaries under the Command of your Bully, Colonel Smith.1 I am told your Master laughs at the Event; you, who know him, know to which of his amiable Qualities we are to impute this heroic Merriment; whether to his Brutality, his Stupidity, or Hypocrisy. Let Edition: current; Page: [184] him remember, and do you tremble, when I tell your Lordship, that neither of those Qualities will avail him in the Field, however they may be flattered in his sycophantic Circle at a fawning Levee.

In the subsequent Part of this Paper, I have given a true Reason for the early Prorogation of your smuggled Parliament. I have told how much your Lordship and your Ministerial Gang feared the Arrival of News from Boston, during the Sitting of Parliament.

But why has your Lordship stopped the Publication of this pleasing News in your GAZETTE? Why do you wait for the Arrival of the SUKEY? With what delusive Lye do you intend to cheat the People, who, even in this Kingdom, are upon the Eve of taking Arms? I tell your Lordship, peremptorily, that they will do so. Though I know, that neither you, nor any of your impolitic, bloody Herd, from the Master Butcher down to his lowest Slaughterman, can relent, yet, in the Name of the People of England, I charge you all to desist.

Forewarned, forearmed, my Lord, you have now, most traitorously opened a Scene of CIVIL WAR in America; let me conjure you not to risque one here. Turn over the Annals of that weak Tyrant CHARLES the First? lay them fairly (in Spite of Bute and Mansfield) before your deluded, infatuated Sovereign, dare to be honest in this dreadful CRISIS, do not, like a Coward, consult your own Safety, but your Country’s.—Let Bute and Mansfield perish; and, if there is a blacker Parricide, let him fall too; nay, rather fall yourself, my Lord, than lend a further Hand to extinguish Liberty in this unhappy Empire.

Your vain, your wicked Hopes of Conquest in America, will most assuredly prove abortive; your retreating Troops, your mercenary Parricides (England disclaims the Assassins) have drawn Blood from the virtuous, the brave, the free Americans. It is the Wish, my Lord, of every true-born Briton, that those Military Hirelings (who are England’s Bastards, not her Sons) may fall a Sacrifice to the Justice of America. Rest assured, my Lord, that they will be cut in Pieces before your murderous Reinforcement, under that necessitous Tool, Burgoyne, can possibly arrive.

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That every Reinforcement for such inhuman, unnatural, and unjust Purposes, may share the same Fate, and that strugling America may at last be free, or, if enslaved, that SHE may disdain to be enslaved by her tyrannic Parent, is the pious Prayer of every virtuous Briton, and the most fervent Wish of


P. S. Though his Holiness, the POPE, may probably order his Children at Quebec to sing Te Deum upon your Lordship’s late or future Success against your Fellow-Subjects in America, yet it may not be quite so prudent that it should be sung by the hypocritical Choir at St. James’s, by Way of blinding People here, from whom the Truth cannot long remain a Secret:—Let me give your Lordship one more friendly Hint before we part; do not disgrace your Sovereign AGAIN, by suffering him to return PUBLIC THANKS by his Secretary at War,2 to his Military Cut-Throats in America, as he did to those who murdered his innocent Subjects, for their foolish Curiosity in St. George’s Fields.—And now, my Lord, “To Dinner—with what Appetite you may.


Remarks on his Majesty’s last most Gracious (I had like to have said infamous) Speech, to both Houses of Parliament.

NO Prince can be more ASTONISHED at the humble Supplications of injured Subjects than I am at the shameful Negligence of Charles Eyre and William Strahan,3 Printers to the King’s most excellent Majesty. I am sorry to say that his Majesty’s last Speech Edition: current; Page: [186] is by far the fullest of Typographical Errors of any since the Revolution. These Errors will seem palpable and obvious to every Reader, who is not ignorant of the present critical State of Great Britain and America. The royal Printers are the less excusable for want of due attention, as a Royal Speech is no ordinary Composition, it originates from Bute, is trimmed up by Mansfield, adopted by North and pronounced by a Royal Orator; but as it is at last submitted to the Inspection of the Public, it must, like other Human Compositions, undergo the Public Censure.

Errata, Notes, and Queries.

“My entire Satisfaction in your Conduct.”]—Quere, Whether there is one honest Man, in England entirely satisfied with the conduct of the Parliament except his Majesty.

“During the Course of this important Session.”]—The Epithet important recalls to my mind a Passage in Addison’s Cato—viz.———“the great th’ important Day,

“Big with the Fate of Cato, and of Rome.

“The Rights of my Crown.”]—Here is an unpardonable Omission of the Printers,—after the word [the] insert the word [despotic;] alluding to the late assent to illegal Taxation, Murder, Famine, Popery, &c.

“Authority of Parliament”] before the word [Authority,] insert these words, [legal and constitutional.]

“You have protected and promoted the Commercial Interests of my Kingdoms”]—Namely by stopping by every inhuman means, the former intercourse between England and America.—by prohibiting, ruining, and losing, (perhaps for ever,) a most important Fishery, with all its Advantages to this Kingdom, and to America in general; without which Edition: current; Page: [187] none of our West India Colonies, or their Millions of Slaves can possibly subsist, without which, many Thousands of Souls, on the Continent of America, must perish.

N. B. This Royal Compliment to our most virtuous and incorrupt Parliament, is intended as a second Snub to the City of London, for their late ASTONISHING Petition. Here I detect the Pen of the Lord Chief Justice of England.

“As far as the Constitution will allow you”]—That is to say, as far as Bute’s and Mansfield’s unconstitutional Notions of the Constitution will allow; according to them, it allows only of these two alternatives, Tyranny or Death; America may take her Choice. Every Remonstrance, Petition, and Supplication of America, has been spurn’d by King, Lords, and Commons, two conciliatory Plans, upon Constitutional, Free, just, and Honourable Principles, have been rejected in each House. The inhuman Ministerial Parricides, should remember, however, that a conciliatory Plan may be gladly embraced again by Tyrants, when offered in the Field, like the great one in Runny Mead,4 let them remember too, that upon the breaking out of a Civil War, in this Country, Corruption will not be able to secure to them the bravest Part, even of the Standing Army; not one of the Constitutional Militia; nor a single General, equal to those honourable Men, who have already refused to bathe their Swords in the Blood of the spirited Americans. Above all, let these Tyrants remember that the Hearts of the People throughout the whole English Empire are set against them.—BLOOD will have BLOOD, they say.

“Gratify the Wishes”] For [the] read my.

“Remove the Apprehensions,”] For [Apprehensions] read [pretensions,] namely, to Liberty, Property, and Life.

“Of my Subjects in America.”] For Subjects read [Objects,]—i.e. Objects of Indignation, Revenge, and Tyranny, &c.—not of Mercy, or Humanity.

Edition: current; Page: [188]

“The most salutary Effects”] For [Salutary,] read [Sanguinary]

“The late mark of your Affectionate Attachment”] For Affectionate read [affected.]—This Passage alludes to the grant of Somerset House to the King, to reimburse his provident and frugal Majesty, for his immense profusion of the Public Money; dissipated with the greatest Taste, Elegance, and patriotic Pains, in the most costly puerile, superfluities of Toys, Baubles, Nick-nacks, Whim-wams &c. &c. in and about the Queen’s Palace.—It looks like another Palace of Semiramis.—Hoc novum est Aucupium!5 Supplies under such pretences, and for such Princely and Meritorious Purposes, is a new Species of Ministerial Gullery, not to say Impudence.

“I have great Reason to expect the continuance of Peace.”] after the word [have] insert the word, [no]

“Nothing on my Part consistent,”] Instead of [consistent] read inconsistent.

“It gives me much concern”] after the word [me] insert the word [not]

“For the several Services of the current Year”] Instead of [Services] read Devices.

“Discernment of their true Interests”] Instead of [true] read [new] meaning the new and defferent Interests from what their foolish Ancestors had at the glorious Revolution. As the Crown and its Ministers have new Views, and new Modes of Government the People may well be supposed to have new Interests, since that whiggish Period, when the true Interest of the King and People were so much mistaken by a set of wild Enthusiats called Patriots. A Name which Doctor Johnson, in his Dictionary, says, is to be found in the Dictionary only; the Doctor at that Time little thought of writing an infamous Pamphlet under that Name.

My faithful and beloved People”] By this distinguishing and respectful Epithet [faithful,] must be meant the faithful Majority of Lords and Edition: current; Page: [189] Commons.—in the wheedling Epithet [beloved] this Majority is also certainly included—But the stiff-necked, patriotic Ministry, the plaintive City of London, the injured Subjects in general, and the brave Americans in particular, (not forgetting their truly noble Friend LORD EFFINGHAM,)6 are most certainly excepted. As to the firm Americans, it is impossible that they should be comprised in these tender Terms; because his Majesty is most graciously pleased to intimate, a little before that if his firm and steady Parliament had not, with a firm and steady Resolution, devoted that Part of his Majesty’s Subjects to Destruction, the Rights of his Crown, the Authority of Parliament, and the Commercial Interests of his Kingdoms, could not be maintained, protected and promoted.—The necessary Inference from these words is, that nothing can maintain, protect, or promote, the true Interests of the BRITISH EMPIRE, but Popery, Sword, and Famine, I may add TYRANNY, and TAXATION.—If the above sugared Words, [faithful and beloved] are extended generally, they must be looked upon as Springs to catch Woodcocks, they remind me of that shrew’d Reflection which Shakespear puts into the Mouth of Hotspur, upon King Henry’s sweet Words, to that young Hero, whilst his Majesty was cajoling him, (as he says,) like a fawning Greyhound—viz.

———what a deal of candied Courtesy!

“Gentle Harry Piercy!—and kind Cousin!

“O! the Devil take such Cozeners!”7

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Q.—Whether this early Prorogation is not as truly symptomatic as the Minister’s Fears, as the sudden Dissolution was of the last infamous Parliament? This early prorogation (by Mansfield’s advice) shews, that after all the foul mouth’d, bullying, insolence, of a Tyrannic Administration, they dare not protract the Session of Parliament any longer for fear of hearing news from America (which they could not conceal) during that Session. This Vacation, therefore, is artfully contrived to give breath to a confused, destracted, and trembling ADMINISTRATION; at the opening of the next Session of Parliament, (if this vile ADMINISTRATION lives so long) we may (under Bute’s and Mansfield’s auspices) expect some curious State Manoeuvre, ready cut and dryed. I will venture to Prophesy with more certainty than Lord Sandwich, Lord Denbigh, or any other MINISTERIAL BULLY, in the GANG, that we shall, at last see, not a rational political Gratification of the wishes; but a pitiful, mean, contemptible, and dastardly SUBMISSION, (by downright COMPULSION) to the JUST DEMANDS of America. I call upon my Countrymen, to remember, that so insignificant an Individual as Casca, now fortells that neither the present ADMINISTRATION, nor, (as I fear) the present REIGN will end till they have supplied Matter for a dreadful and most exemplary Record in the British Annals.


Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. SHAW, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [191]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny

BLOOD calls for BLOOD.

To the People of England.

Friends and Fellow Countrymen,

LET me conjure you by all you hold dear, HERE and HEREAFTER, by all the Ties of NATURE and JUSTICE, to rouse in Defence of your persecuted Brethren and Fellow Subjects in America, who Daily fall Innocent Victoms to LAWLESS Power: let me intreat you to rouse in Defence of your Rights and Liberties; those Rights and Liberties which Heaven gave, and for which your Fathers bravely Fought, and Gloriously fell, to preserve themselves, and us their Posterity FREE; be assured if BLEEDING America can be reduced to Slavery, all the boasted Privileges of Englishmen must fall with her: let me therefore beseech you to OPPOSE with uplifted Hands, and stretched out Arms, the CRUEL, BLOODY, and UNNATURAL Tyranny of GEORGE the Third, and his diabolical Tory Minions: Perdition, Destruction, and all the Miseries of a tortured Death, attend the Wretch, who calls himself Edition: current; Page: [192] an ENGLISHMAN, and yet can TAMELY see his BROTHER, or Fellow Subject, Perish through wanton Cruelty, Oppression, or the Sword.

No Tyrant was ever more Despotic and Cruel than the present Sovereign, who disgraces the Seat of Royalty in the British Empire; no Court ever more Corrupt than his, and yet, O my Countrymen, to this merciless and despotic Tyrant, and to his wicked and corrupt Ministry, you sacrifice your Rights, and yield a PEACEABLE Submission.

Consider the gloomy, the dreadful Prospect before you, the Plains of America are running with the BLOOD of her Inhabitants, the Essence of the English Constitution destroyed, and nothing but the Form, the mere Shadow of it remains; all the dear bought Liberties purchased and sealed with the BLOOD of your Forefathers, wrested from you by the polluted Hands of an abandoned set of Miscreants, supported and defended by a ROYAL TYRANT; and a dark cloud of Slavery, like a rising Tempest, overspreads the Land, it approaches Swiftly, and at this Moment threatens our Destruction; it is therefore high Time you should be roused and awakened to a sense of your Danger, and by an appeal to Heaven, by a glorious RESISTANCE, provide for your common Safety.

This is the only way, we have no other, to prevent the RUIN that threatens us, if we are inattentive or inactive at this Time, our Chains will be fast rivetted, and Liberty must expire; your Petitions and Remonstrances have been spurned by the King, and you have now no Remedy left but that of entering into an ASSOCIATION in Defence of your Common Rights, and the Rights of America. They have set you a noble Example, an Example worthy of Britons, an Example which you are Bound by all the Principles of Justice and Self-preservation to FOLLOW; he must be Blind that is not convinced of this, and he is an abandoned Wretch, an Enemy to Mankind, who will not pursue the Road.

Upon your Virtue and Resolution at this juncture, depends the SALVATION of England and America; it is now in your Power to prevent the farther Progress of Despotism, the Butchery of your Fellow Countrymen, and yourselves from Slavery and Ruin.

Edition: current; Page: [193]

When the humble Supplications of an oppressed People are treated with Contempt, and a deaf Ear turned to their Complaints, when their RIGHTS are Daily invaded, their Property unlawfully wrested from them, and their Blood inhumanly shed, it is incumbent on them, it is a Duty they owe to God and their Country, to take the Field and resist their Oppressors, to shew themselves BRAVE, when Bravery is required, and dare to be Resolute in the Hour of Danger. Remember, my Fellow Countrymen, our Predecessors led the Way, the Americans have followed their noble Example, and we are Bound to follow them. Where would have been LIBERTY and PROPERTY, if it had not been for the Virtue, Bravery, and Resolution of our Ancestors? they stood FORTH in the glorious Cause, and many of them secured it to Posterity by their BLOOD. Shall we then, TAMELY submit to have those Privileges for which they FOUGHT and FELL, ravished from us by a Lawless tribe of Men, who call themselves Senators or Ministers, and who taking Advantage of their Prince, are laying waste their Country, and spreading Desolation through the Land? Shall it be said in after-Times, that the Year ONE THOUSAND SEVEN HUNDRED and SEVENTY FIVE, was less Glorious than that of SIXTEEN HUNDRED and EIGHTY EIGHT; and that as the Age grew more and more enlightened, it became more and more PUSILLANIMOUS. Forbid it Heaven!

Let me intreat you, O! Englishman, to rouse from that state of Supineness in which you have so long lain; open your Eyes to the Danger that surrounds you, and stand forth the Defenders of AMERICAN VIRTUE and PUBLIC LIBERTY. HAVOC is now the Cry at St. Jamess and the Dogs of War are let loose to tear out the Vitals of our Brethren; America through the abandoned Cruelty of an accursed Administration, and an unrelenting King, is become a FIELD of BLOOD, overspread with Desolation and Slaughter. It is in your Power to put an end to this horrid, unnatural CIVIL WAR, it must owe its extinction or continuance to you, if you are Virtuous, Brave, and Resolute, the Lives, Liberties, and Properties of your Fellow-Subjects, may be preserved, and your Country saved from Destruction; if on the Contrary, you should be irresolute and Pusillanimous at this Time, (unworthy the Name of Englishmen) Thousands, many thousand Lives must be lost; the Liberties of Edition: current; Page: [194] England will be no more, and your Property taken from you at the Will and Pleasure of the King and his Ministers.

It can only be from the Virtue and UNITED efforts of England and America, that the Constitution of Great Britain, and all our invaluable Privileges can be preserved; should you remain quiet Spectators of the present inhuman Massacres, and destructive Measures, you will deserve the worst of Slavery, and the cruelest Punishment ever inflicted on a People.

If you have any Honour, if you have any Virtue, or any Bravery, you will now stand forth and resist the Tyrants, you will demand the Heads of those Men, who advised those sanguinary, fatal, and ruinous Measures; you will declare to the World, you will not consent to Arbitrary invasions of your Liberties, Arbitrary dispensings with the Laws, and Arbitrary governing by an Army; that you owe no Submission to a King, beyond the Bounds of Law; that your Lives, Liberties, and Estates, shall not be disposed of at his PLEASURE, and that you are Bound by the Laws of God and Man, to resist a Tyrant; that you will oppose all unjust Violence, and those who attempt the Life of the Constitution, as the great Enemies of their Country; this has been practiced in all Ages, and all Nations determine, that when Kings invade the Lives, Liberties, or Properties of their Subjects, that tear up the Foundations of Public Freedom, and the sacred Constitution of their Country, MAY BE RESISTED, either by calling in and joining with Foreign Assistance, or by taking Arms in Defence of the Law and common Liberty; this is what was declared at the REVOLUTION, and this is the Foundation upon which the People took Arms in the Time of Charles the First.

The Axe is now at the Root of the Tree; the overthrow of the Constitution is the great Design of the King and his Ministers, the open and avowed Enemies to the natural Rights of Mankind, who have already sufficiently proved to the World, that they mean the Subversion of the universal Right of Christians and of Subjects. Let those, my Countrymen, who plead for Tyrants, submit to their Power; but let us esteem Liberty, Religion, and Property, equally with our Lives, every Mans Birthright by Nature; no Government ever received a LEGAL Authority Edition: current; Page: [195] to abridge or take it away; nor has God vested any single or confederated Power in any Hands to destroy it; and it is in Defence of these glorious Privileges, these common Rights, I have written this Paper, and to preserve them unviolated by the polluted Hands of Lawless Tyrants, I would lay down my Life, for Life is a burthen in any other State than that of FREEDOM.

It is notoriously known, notwithstanding all the Royal and ministerial Falshoods which have been, and are Daily advanced, to our Disgrace, it is known that we do not enjoy, undiminished, one single Privilege purchased by the Blood of our Ancestors, and confirmed to us by MAGNA CHARTA and the BILL of RIGHTS. Every Man then, who remains passive at this Time, is an Enemy and a Traitor to his Country. I loose all kind of Patience when I reflect upon the melancholy Situation of England and America, and the villainous Principles of those Men, intrusted by the Sovereign with the Management of the Affairs of this once great, free, and powerful Kingdom. I am fired with a just Indignation against the Authors of our Misfortunes; and if I appear too Warm, I hope it will be imputed to my Zeal in the Public Cause, and not to any Malice or Resentment, against Individuals, for I here declare to have none, but I most sincerely wish to stop the further Effusion of Human Blood, and would willingly sacrifice my Life, could I rescue my Country from the Hands of PARRICIDES and TRAITORS, and from that Destruction which now threatens it.

To the PUBLIC.

THE Necessity, Utility, and National Advantage of a political Paper in Defence of the natural Rights of Mankind at this IMPORTANT ÆRA, must appear greater than at the last glorious Revolution. We now see, and with infinite Concern, the King and Ministry, the Lords and Commons, all united, and firmly resolved, on persuing Measures, which (without a noble Opposition from the People) must end in the Destruction of the Laws, Rights, and Liberties, of the whole British Empire, in England and America. It is therefore only necessary to say, this Paper will be carried on by two Gentlemen of literay Abilities, alike Enemies to the Arbitary efforts of ONE, or a purchased Majority of FIVE HUNDRED Edition: current; Page: [196] and FIFTY EIGHT TYRANTS, to whom they, and they hope, their Fellow-Subjects, never will submit.

  • Potior visa est periculosa libertas quieto servitio.
  • Sallust1

The CRISIS will be continued with Spirit, in defiance of every exertion of Lawless Power, upon the true Principles of the Constitution, against the secret Machinations, and despotic Designs, of the present corrupt Court and Ministry. The Authors being determined, even at the risk of every thing that is dear to Man, to rescue the Liberty of the Press, the natural Rights of Mankind, and the Constitution of the British Empire, in England and America, from that Ruin, with which they are now threatened. In order with more Ease to accomplish these great Ends, they earnestly beg the Assistance of those, who are real Friends to the Laws, Liberties, and Constitution of their Country.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [197]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.


Most infernal Sir,

Do not affect the utmost Astonishment at this Address; it comes not in the tremendous form of a Petition; of these your sulky Majesty shall have no more during the short Time you can hope to Tyrannize over us in a regal Shape. What I humbly offer now, concerns, not your infested and afflicted Kingdoms, so nearly as your dearer Self and Favourites. Your Majesty’s best beloved Spirits, Bute and Mansfield, the whole astonished World consider as the blackest Imps in all your Train; and yourself, as their humble Executioner. They advise, and you most condescendingly administer, Destruction. Their Ascendancy and your Humility, their Patriotism and your Discernment, their Wisdom and your Humanity, are Subjects of universal Admiration. But of all your most diabolical Virtues, satanic Sir, the most conspicuous is Hypocrisy. The Blaze of it, upon one Occasion, in particular, the Death of Lord Chancellor Edition: current; Page: [198] Yorke. (as Milton says) “far round illumin’d Hell.1 As you can practise it so successfully for the Desolation, let me intreat you, gloomy Sir, to assume it now (by way of Frolic only) for the preservation of Mankind; but, above all, for your own precious Interest, much dearer to you than the Salvation of an inferior Universe. Your Majesty has disported yourself amidst the dangerous Indulgences of three most unprincely Passions; Pride, Anger, and Revenge, for Fourteen Years past; ever since the Demise of our good King, George the Second; in whose Reign your most hypocritical Highness was advised to wear the Mask of Decency and Circumspection. You then cast a favourable Glance only at Corruption; but you have since spurned the Reign of Policy, and broke out into such uncommon Tyrannies, such Bloody Inhumanities, unprovoked, that your despotic Highness must now either desist, or expect to be deserted and deposed. My great Tenderness for two of your Highnesses dearest Friends, the Scotch Lords Bute, and Mansfield, obliges me to give you this timely Notice. Should you still continue, dread Sir, to “have entire Confidence in the Wisdom of your Divan,” should you still “Steadily pursue those Measures which they have recommended”—your Reign can be but short; your animating Supporters Bute, and Mansfield, must surely fall. When these hellish Instigators of your Pride are gone, your unhappy Reign must end, when those Arch Fiends of Corruption and Iniquity, are no more, your wise Divan, will fall off from you like Water, they will neither support your wanton Slaughter in AMERICA, nor your pious Designs upon Great Britain, your faithful Pensioners will faint for want of these heartening supplies, with which they are now Daily refreshed in plenteous Streams, by your Edition: current; Page: [199] Majesty’s Feeder LORD NORTH, under the provident Eye of your best Subjects, Bute and Mansfield. When these Fountains of Milk and Honey, cease to flow, your Majestys hired Majority will grow languid and relaps into what they once were, and ever will be, mere Dissemblers of patriotic Virtue, even your Sovereign Tool of all, who now audaciously plumes himself upon their Support, will then foreswear any further Attachment to them, or you. When your chief Agents Lord Bute and Mansfield are extinct, what must become of Ways and Means, Arbitrary Taxation, and most effectual Methods for carrying these pregnant Schemes into a daring Execution, by Sword and Famine. Your Angels, Bute and Mansfield are excellent at these Devices but their fervent Zeal for your Highness’s Cause has, at last transported them beyond the Bounds of Judgment. Call these winged Hell-hounds off in Time, great Sir, if you value the preservation of your despotic Power; and as you have hitherto played the Tyrant for your Pleasure, begin now to play the Hypocrite for your Safety. Should you permit these Scotch Imps of yours to proceed farther, you will hazard all. We now feel certain Stretches of your persevering Powers, too great for human Patience, or human Nature to support long; assume, therefore, most steady Prince, in this dangerous Crisis, a Virtue, to which you are, in Truth, a Stranger. Play off, once more, an appearance of Clemency; it will be better timed now, than it ever was in the Cases of Sodomites, wanton Murderers, and military Cut-throats. Dissemble your causeless Anger, and effeminate Thirst for Blood. By this Stratagem you may, probably, make the easy, long-suffering, passive Fools, whom you wish to destroy, believe that your Majesty is really sincere, when you condescend to call them (with inward reluctance and disdain) “Your faithful and beloved People.”2 Believe me, most infernal Prince, this is the only way to compass their utter Ruin, with the least probable Security to your gracious Self, your wise Divan, your faithful Minions, your obsequious Assassins, and pensioned Parricides. By these Means, and by these alone, you may still live in prosperous, and plenteous Infamy. Thus, and thus Edition: current; Page: [200] only, can you hope to introduce, with Safety to yourself, that destructive plan of Tyranny, by which your beloved Bute and Mansfield, will immortalize your Reign. It must be introduced, my Prince, by gentle, slow Degrees. By your obdurate Steadiness, and precipitate Perseverance (Virtues not unworthy of a Devil) your darling Schemes may be suddenly extinguished, before you can have Time to declare again how much you are astonished at those Sufferers, who despise and detest you as much as CASCA.


To the Lords BUTE and MANSFIELD.

What Seas of Blood will Civil Discord shed?

Dire Fiend! by Georges Friends, Bute, North, and Mansfield, bred.

My Lords,

YOUR Lordships will Pardon me, and I am sure your Brother North will readily excuse me, if I pass him by, for the Present, as a mere expletive in your execrable Triumvirate. He is, in Truth, my Lords, (and the World sees it) no more than the ostensible Leader of that fawning, false, corrupt Confederacy, who arrogantly groupe themselves under the specious Name of King’s Friends. Like designing Traytors, they, and you, my Lords, assume this Mask for the worst of Purposes; that of enriching your wretched Selves, by the Spoils of this unhappy Country; whilst your deluded, passive Sovereign, is but your stalking Horse. Poor, mean, obsequious, flexible Lord North, (like the rest of your servile Herd) is no more than the humble and callous Executioner of your infernal selfish Views, your inhuman Warrants, your destructive Bloody Policy. In a Word, my Lords, you are the Subtiles, and he is the Face.

To your Lordships, therefore, and to your Lordships only, as Principals, as the earliest and most indefatigable Deluders of weak and ductile Majesty; I now address myself, not in Terms of pleasing Flattery, but in the Rough, and odious Language of disgusting Truth. Such, my Lords, as Edition: current; Page: [201] the Sovereign is, the Nation has received him from your Hands. He was Born a BRITON; you, my Lords, have taught him not only to forget, but to shame his Birth. He was Born a Prince; you have levelled him with the worst, the most inhuman, and meanest of his Subjects. He became (too soon, alas!) a KING; you, my Lords, have debased him to a Tyrant. His Mind, though enlightened by no auspicious ray from Heaven, was yet capable of receiving some moderate degrees of Culture; it was, in its infant State, open at least to the impressions of HUMANITY; you, my Lords, in that early period, gave it a most unnatural, and unhappy Bent; you moulded, you contracted, you steeled it for your own wicked Purposes. To say the best of it, it remains, after all your painful Lectures, either totally unprincipled, or most atrociously perverted. Hence, my Patriotic Lords, have flowed (and still flow) all the Grievances of the present inglorious, ignoble, and inhuman Reign. Let me ring them in your Ears, my Lords:—Court—and Ministerial Assassinations, of which Martyn, Dun, and Talbot, can remind you, in Wilkes’s Case. In the same Case, in Bingley’s, and some others, Royal Persecutions, Star-Chamber Inquisition, erasing Records, inveigling, byassing, misleading, deceiving, over-bearing, and even packing Juries, by Lord Mansfield.3 Daring Corruptions and Perversions of Justice, by the same Hand, in the last Resort (the once righteous House of Lords) in the late Case of Thickness and Leigh, under the infamous, illegal, and unprecedented Conduct of Lord Apsley, Lord Mansfield, Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain. The unjust Proceedings in this Case will (to your immortal Infamy, Lord Mansfield) be handed down to the latest Posterity—even a Jeffereys would have blushed at them. As for your Shadow, Apsley; your dependant Scots, Cathcart and Edition: current; Page: [202] Galloway,4 and your Bully Denbigh, they are but Tools in your Lordship’s Craft, they live by the Breath of your Lordship’s Nostrils, and are too inconsiderable to be named either by Historian or Reporter; but Lord Mansfield’s Name and Doctrines will be faithfully recorded.—Now, my Lords, I returns to Grievances, the Offspring of your Scotch Politics. Among others, you may recollect the Violation of the Freedom of Election, and the Lives you have to answer for at the Middlesex Election, in Support of your Court-Tool, Sir William Beauchamp Procter.5 Your Lordships, and your royal Pupil, countenanced a still greater Violation of the Rights of Election, which was most impudently and perfidiously avowed, and sanctified by a corrupt House of Commons, in the Case of that insignificant Time-server, Colonel Lutterell, the King’s Brother in Law.6 Let me now remind your Lordships (for you are too callous to be shocked with the Sound) of Murders (repeated, wanton Murders) at the Brentford Election, and in St. Georges Fields, even of Women and Edition: current; Page: [203] Children. The barbarous Carnage of young Allen (naked and unarmed) must be attoned for.—By whose Advise, and with whose Privity, my Lords, did your Pupil return public Thanks for this Slaughter of his Subjects; who in the one Case were but curious Gazers, and in the other, were discharging their Duties as honest, independant Electors, above ministerial Bribery and Corruption? Let me ask you, my Lord Mansfield, the Lord Chief Justice of England (whose Duty it was to bring these ministerial Cut-throats to condign Punishment) why were these guilty Miscreants screened, protected, pardoned, pensioned? Why, and by whose Orders (unless yours, my Lord) was so much affected Tenderness, Management, brow-beating of the Prosecutor’s Council and Witnesses, such nice Caution in summing up the Evidence, such Menaces against those who should dare to print these public Trials, but particularly that of young Allen? Why did your Lordship’s upright, holy, and favourite Judge, Smythe,7 so signalize himself, and labour with such uncommon Partiality? Why were the known Laws of England, dispensed with in the Case of the military Scotch Ruffians, who spilled the innocent Blood of Allen in St. Georgess Fields? Who suggested the happy Thought of dissolving the last Parliament on a sudden, and of smuggling and packing (by means of private Intimations to the Court-Members) a corrupt Majority in the present House of Commons in support of the ruinous and despotic Plan laid by your Lordships, and carried on by your obsequious Instrument Lord North, and his pensionary Subalterns in both Houses of Parliament? How, and by whom, are the Seats of Justice to be filled for Edition: current; Page: [204] the future, my Lords, and for what Purposes? I will not ask, what knowledge of the Laws, but what Interest, what private Reasons, made such a Man as Hotham, a Baron of the Exchequer?8—This is a new Grievance and a real one.

“I liacos intra muros peccator, et extra.

  • Within St. Stephens Chapel, and without;
  • That All’s one Scene of Guilt, we need not doubt.9

Perret sells out, Hotham buys in, and his Seat in Parliament is thus purchased and filled up by your Lordships.10 I must interrogate your Lordships still further—Of all your other wicked Counsels, what impolitic, diabolical Spirit, could instigate you to advise your Pupil ever to consent Edition: current; Page: [205] to, much more to persevere, in the inhuman Massacre of America? Why were the Petitions of the City of London answered in your Reign, my Lords, with Sneers, Insults, Abuse, Menaces, indignent Frowns, and even with Accusations of High Treason? I refer your Lordships to your last Bashaw-like Answer to the City Petition, where you will find (to the general Astonishment) that you have almost impeached a part of his Majesty’s faithful and beloved* People, of High Treason, for only making a constitutional Supplication to the Throne; for humbly remonstrating against the pernicious Influence of Corruption and your Lordships; and for expressing natural and just Feelings for their Fellow Subjects, doomed by your Lordships to Destruction in America.

These my Lords, are some of the most palpable Wounds which your Lordships have, by Hirelings and Dupes, already given, there are others in Embryo, which you are about to give to the British Constitution. For these Iniquities, when your Measure is full, my Lords, you must assuredly account at last, unless, like true Cowards, you fly from Public Justice, or disappoint the meritorious Executioner, by the timely Application of your own guilty Hands, to the rottenest and most detested Hearts that ever beat. It can be no Secret to your Lordships, that you are universaly considered as the CATALINES11 of an imperious Gang of Ministerial Parricides, you must be sensible that the Nation has hitherto submitted with unexampled Patience, not, properly speaking, so much to the puerile Obstinacy of a Brunswick, as to the despotic sway of a Bute Edition: current; Page: [206] and Mansfield; at once the greatest Tyrants, and the greatest Traytors, and the greatest Cowards under Heaven. The truth of these Assertions is fully proved by your banefull Councils, from whence all the Grievances above mentioned have arose, and from whence more (I fear) will shortly spring. If murdering their Innocence and Virtue, in the Subject and extinguishing their influence in the Sovereign, is Tyranny, Treason, and rank Cowardice, I am no false accuser of your Lordships. The Instances I have already given, are such as would blacken the Reigns of a NERO, or DOMITIAN,12 but they are such my Lords as sprung Naturally from those infernal Institutes which your Lordships have incessantly penned and preached, for the Edification of a British King; of a King; who neither does, nor possibly can, hold the Crown of England upon such Principles as your Lordships have laboured to instill, these Labours, my Lords, are crying Sins against the Liberties, and Majesty of this Nation, and the Wages of these Sins is Death.

The present Generation (like that which called this Family to the Throne) are Revolutionists; your Lordships are, we know, of a contrary Perswasion. Under such Tutors our steady, persevering, unhappy Sovereign, must have imbibed the most unconstitutional, absurd, and fatal Notions. Your Lordships should have Taught him in his earliest Days, that Steadiness and Perseverance can never be maintained with Reason, but in the Cause of Truth and Virtue, Justice and Humanity. Cast your Eyes, my Lords, upon the black Catalogue of Crimes above enumerated, and say in which of them a Spark of Virtue can be seen? Turn over the political Institutes you have penned for your royal Pupil’s use, and say in what part of that elaborate Manuel, you have, with Truth, delineated the Prince, the Politician, or the Soldier? Nay, the Man of Honour, Humanity, Edition: current; Page: [207] or Common Honesty? It is too well known, it is most severely felt, that your Sovereign has from his Infancy proceeded, and still magnanimously persists, upon the Plan formed by your Lordships for his Direction. He opens his Ears and his Heart (if he ever opens them at all) to you alone. He cajoles his Parliament, he despises his People, but he confides in you. After all, my Lords, what is this Confidence in your Lordships likely to produce? A Snare to him, and Ruin to his People. Your Lordships have vitiated his Soul with every Quality of a genuine Scot, except true Valour, and Discernment. The one would, in your Opinion, have made England too Happy, the other would have made yourselves too odious. This would have blasted your impious Designs, and that would have crushed your pusillanimous and baneful Politics. The bitter Fruits of your political System, my Lords, begin now to ripen into a total Desolation, or, at least, an irrecoverable loss of a large, a valuable, a virtuous, (and therefore an obnoxious) part of the British Empire, into Foreign Wars; and intestine Commotions and Calamities; into universal Discontent and Slaughter; into Misery, Revenge, Anarchy, and a Revolution. Every feeling Man most devoutly wishes your Lordships an ample, and a speedy Share of that National Resentment, which you have in Season, and out of Season, laboured to deserve. That your pernicious and detested Lives may be prolonged, till your Lordships shall receive from the Hand of Public Justice, the Reward of all your indefatigable Pains to betray your King, and destroy your Country, is the Prayer of



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  • Immedicabile Vulnus
  • Ense recidendum, ne pars sincera trahatur.
  • Ovid.1
  • The prudent Surgeon, of a Gangrene sure,
  • By Amputation keeps the Vitals pure;
  • State Dissolutions thus effect a Cure.

A Disease of a venal Majority in the great Council of the Nation, may be truly called a Mortification in the Body politic. This desperate Case requires a desperate Remedy. A Patriot King2 would neither delay, nor fear the application. It’s Success depends upon the Hand that operates. The Operation of a wholesome and salutary Edition: current; Page: [210] Desolution has been wisely intrusted by our considerate Ancestors to the Sovereign. The Exertion of this great Prerogative was petitioned for, with the greatest Reason, during the Tyranny and Iniquities of the last venal Parliament, by the first, the most loyal, and respectable Metropolis in the Universe, the City of London. It was twice Petitioned for, and twice refused.

Several other Cities and Corporations in this Kingdom were not silent, they likewise supplicated the Throne, and met with the like Repulse. This Prerogative (a glorious one it is) is intrusted with the Sovereign by the People, to be by him exerted in the nicest and most critical Emergencies of State.

Of all the Prerogatives of the Crown, the most essential to the Constitution, the most salutary to the People, the most Honourable to a Patriot King, is that of dissolving Parliaments. In this respect a King of England is wisely invested by the People, with the Power of a temporary Dictator. Ne quid detriment i Respublica capiat.3

It is his Duty when either the two other Estates (the Lords and Commons) preponderate, to interpose, as a constitutional Moderator, and to keep the Ballance even, that the Common Weal may not suffer by Democratical Passions, or Aristocratical Ambition. This Power, however, (of Dissolution) never will be exercised by a Tyrant, and never can be exercised by a Fool, but for Purposes destructive of the Constitution; perhaps, to save a Minion, or to keep Corruption in the hopeful Channel prescribed for it by himself and his faithless Ministers. But the People’s Hopes, Addresses, and Petitions, will be vain. What can they hope from a Tyrant, or a Fool? Either of these are equally unfit to Reign. The one will be duped by his Ministers and Favourites, the other biased by his Lusts. Ambition fires the Tyrant, and Geugaws captivate the Fool; the one is subdued by false Glory, the other by Flattery and Show.

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Should the Majesty of Great Britain ever happen to be a compound of Fool and Tyrant, the National Misfortune will be equal. The Truth is, that so glorious a Prerogative cannot be justly exercised, or wisely conducted, without a discerning Judgment, and a good Heart; without Fortitude sufficient to throw off the Leading strings of presumptuous Favourites, and Sense enough to proceed without them; without Capacity to think, and Ability to act; without considering upon what Condition the Crown of England is now held, and by what Conduct alone it can be maintained; without adhering to Facts instead of Favourites; to Truth instead of ministerial Sophistry; to constitutional Principles, instead of unconstitutional Councils. A smuggled, venal Parliament is more properly a great Majority, than a great Council; it is certainly not the Constitutional great Council of this Nation. A King of England is a parliamentary King; he is wisely placed at the Head of that Parliament, as having in his Breast, the executive Power of the Kingdom. The other two Estates consult and propound, but he must approve; they advise, but he confirms; they prepare Measures, but he enforces them. If those Measures are salutary, his Assent promotes the Welfare; if pernicious, it may compleat the Ruin of his Kingdom. No English King ought, no PATRIOT KING will, be the subservent Fool of a corrupt, a wicked, or a bloody Parliament. He will judiciously, and righteously, withold his Assent to such Acts, as must inflict Dishonour and Infamy upon himself, and Destruction upon his People. The worst Consequence that can ensue, will be that this wicked, precipitate Parliament, must deliberate again upon their intended Measures. This wise Delay in a constitutional King, may be the saving of a great Nation. If a Tyrannic Parliament still persists, a PATRIOT KING, like an honest Dictator, will dissolve such Miscreants.

Thus Corruption will be extinguished, honest Representatives elected, and a good King enthroned in the Hearts of a grateful and affectionate People, whom he has thus constitutionally protected from Slavery and Ruin. What? (says some ministerial Scribler, a Johnson perhaps) shall a King of England detach himself from his Parliament? I answer, Yes; if that Parliament is corrupt, wicked, and tyrannical; it is then no constitutional Parliament, but an illicit Gang; nor is he a constitutional King, Edition: current; Page: [212] but a daring and unthinking Tyrant, who adheres to them. By so doing, he plainly shews that it is not his Intention to protect, but to enslave his People. That venerable Body alone can be called a Parliament, who are known, according to the im po4 of the Word, (parler le ment) to speak their Mind, to be above all human Influence. Can this be said of a servile, detestable, insidious, unconstitutional Majority, who come to the great Council, with a mercenary Gagg in their Mouths, their perfidious Names in the Court Calendar, and Lord Bute’s (under the Colour of Lord North’s) Instructions in their Pockets? Our Kings, it is true, are parliamentary Kings; but there is a wide difference between a Parliament and a Cabal; between Sages convened, and Voters hired, between free, constitutional States, and servile, ministerial Dependents.

When a Parliament is degenerated thus far, they loose their Honour, they ought to lose their former Name; they deserve no farther Confidence. They would find none, in a wise and good King. No Prince who is not under the Ideocy, Insanity, or the worst Passions, could adhere to such a Junto. Such Men are audacious in calling themselves a Parliament. They no longer Represent, but usurp; they are not faithful Servants, but assuming Tyrants, they are not Counsellors of the King, but Traytors to the People. A great Council (or rather a great Majority) composed of such Monsters, such Pests of a Community, cannot be said either to regard, or to represent, a People; their Views and Interests are different. The People sue for Protection, they for Places; the People wish to support the Constitution, they to supply their Luxury; the People are affected by the decay of commerce, they by the Largesses of the Minister.

Can a PATRIOT KING confide in, or cooperate with such a Mock-Parliament? When we hear a King talk of steadily pursuing the Advice of the great Council of the Nation, it must be taken for granted, that he knows and believes the Majority of that Council (whose Votes are decesive of the Fate of this Kingdom) to be incorrupt. Can such Faith as this Edition: current; Page: [213] be found in Israel? If not, a King of England may well be asked, even by the Meanest of his Subjects, why he is wicked enough, or weak enough, to approve, sanctify, and confirm, the despotic Acts, not of such a Parliament, but of such a traiterous Convention? Is it his Duty in such a Case, to confide or to dissolve? In such a dangerous Crisis, the Constitution has given a judicial Power to Kings; they are Bound to exercise that Power, not for the Destruction, but for the Safety of the Commonwealth. They are not to consult the Views, the Wishes, the Interests, or Security of Ministers or Favourites, but the Salvation of the Kingdom. Our Laws, under which every King must submit to Reign, speaks plainly to the Sovereign, in open, intelligible, rational Terms, when it says, “Cessa regnare, si non vis judicare.5 “If you will not exercise those judicial Powers, with which the Constitution has entrusted you, resign your Crown, you are no longer fit to reign over a free People.” The Word (judicare) in the Maxim above mentioned, extends not merely to the Exertion of a King’s judicial Powers in civil, or criminal Cases, (though this would be the false Interpretation of a Mansfield) but it must be taken in it’s largest, and most important Sense; it is allowed by every honest, learned Interpreter, to extend to the whole System of the King’s executive Powers. In that large Sense it has ever been considered by such political Writers as Locke, Sidney, Acherly, and Nathanial Bacon, who Writes so admirably on Government.6

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This Maxim is strong, and pointed; it comes directly home to my present Purpose, and opens a large Field for no very favourable Inferences at the present Juncture. A king of England must not, cannot live for himself (much less for his Minions) but only for his People. I speak an honest, constitutional Truth, when I say that he must not Indulge, but Toil. A King’s Revenues, Magnificence, Splendor, Pomp, and Grandeur, are not designed to emblazon him, but to do Honour to his Kingdom. All his glittering rays of Majesty are reflected from the People. An English Throne is not like a Turkish Sophia, to be made the idle Seat of Slumber and Repose. It is erected for the Exercise of Mercy, Truth, and Justice. Neither of these Princely attributes is concerned in maintaining Corruption, or repelling just Suitors without Redress; nay, with ignominious Language and Contempt. It is a King of England’s Duty to cleanse the Augean Stable.7 He is the Argus of the Commonwealth;8 his Eyes, his Ears, his mental Powers, must all be open to his People, whilst his royal Passions are subdued. He can acquire neither Honour nor Security by an injudicious Struggle with his Subjects. Truth and Liberty will prevail. Tyrants and Fools have been dethroned. Injured Subjects have triumphed and exulted in their turn. Minions, and abandoned Ministers have been guarded to the Scaffold; and Corruption itself, though not to be dissolved, may be, at last, extinguished, in another glorious and necessary REVOLUTION.

These are Lessons which English Princes should be Taught betimes in their Minority. By these, even King’s themselves, may profit in riper Edition: current; Page: [215] Years. By these, the present obdurate, deluded Sovereign, whom Heaven has not been pleased to bless with any great share of natural Discernment, may be taught to avoid these Miseries, which must attend his rash and headstrong Perseverance, his unjust and guilty Confidence; his Tyrannic Pride, and an insolent Contempt of that People, through whose Patience and Indulgence, he most unworthyly holds the Crown of England.


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  • Vis, Consili expers, mole ruit sua.
  • Hor.1
  • Be wise, ye Kings, nor to mere Power trust,
  • Without sound Counsels, Pow’rs Tyrannic Lust,
  • And brings it’s haughty Master to the Dust.

WE have lately heard much, and too much, of the Wisdom of Parliament, the great Council of the Nation; that is to say, the corrupt Majority of that great Council, where the most Votes enforce the vilest Measures. We know what this great Council once was, and what it ought to be. Let us reflect upon what it now is. It is (alas!) no more at present than a Majority of Ay’s and No’s—Contents and not Contents. And what is this Majority? the Minister’s—What is this Minister? The King’s;—What is the King? my Lord Bute’s.—What is Lord Bute? An Enemy to this Nation.—I had like to have said what I think, a Traytor; but I hope this will be said with more Weight in a future Impeachment, unless popular Revenge should Edition: current; Page: [218] justly make a less solemn, but a more dreadful Example of this public Pest. Through these Channels of Wisdom flow all the Grievances, Oppressions, and Calamities, which are now so severely felt in England and America. The Subjects of these Nations feel all the Power of this great and wise Council, without a single ray of its Benignity. It shines upon it’s Idols, but lowers upon the Subject. Power, and despotic Power, is the great end in view, and the Growth of it is cultivated with the greatest Boldness and Assiduity. We now see the three great Estates of this Kingdom, which were, in their Origin, wisely designed as salutary Checks upon each other, to preserve the Constitution, in an amicable Confederacy to destory it. As to the Peers, they are created by the Crown, not for Meritorious, but political Reasons. Wealth, and a pliant Disposition, are essential Requisites. Some Minion of the Crown becomes bound for their good Behaviour, and then the Great Seal stamps them for the Tools of an audacious and corrupt Minister. But your Apostate Chathams, Camdens, Richmonds, Buckinghams, Temples, Shelburnes, &c. are repudiated.2 The virtuous Minority is too thin to save their Country. They are out-clamoured, and out-voted. I have heard Lord Chatham’s manly Eloquence rudely drowned by a combined Roar of the Minister’s Majority in the House of Lords. I have heard that great Orator answered by ministerial Mouths without Argument, without Sense, without Grammar, and without English.

Their Lordships may well clear their House, and be as much ashamed of their Speeches, as they ought to be of their Principles. As to the House of Commons, it is filled, and fed, three Parts out of four, by the Minister.

Let me not forget, however, to congratulate them on a new Privilege, which they acquired and established in Wilkess Case, the rational and Edition: current; Page: [219] modest Privilege of electing themselves. This Acquisition is a great one. It is plain that honourable House esteems it so, because they have lately most iniquitiously refused to erase those base and daring Innovations upon the Rights of the People from their Journals. Thus they have industriously preserved the Infamy of the last detested Parliament to posterity. But they have likewise (which was the real Design) treasured up a vile Precedent to be produced in future Times of need, against the Liberties of their Masters, the People of this Kingdom.

There was a Time when this House of Commons was not too Modest to oppose the arbitrary Wills of Princes. There was a Time when they had the Honesty to refuse Supplies, when the Former had been ill-applied, and as ill-accounted for; when the old had been lavished in profusion and donceurs to Favourites, and new were demanded for the like Purposes, or worse, the insidious Purposes of Corruption. There was a Time too, when the Head of that House (the Speaker) had Integrity, though some Parts of that Body were Corrupt.

Whoever remembers Onslow, must respect his Memory;3 whoever knew him must revere it. He respected his Sovereign, but he loved the People. He preserved the Dignity and Integrity of his Station. He distinguished nobly and justly between a Post of Honour and a Post of Profit. He was neither Pensioner, Placeman, nor Privy Councellor. He knew that it was impossible to serve two Masters. He rejoiced to be at the Head of a Free People. He had a thorough knowledge of their Rights, and was zealous in defending them. He knew that it was impossible for a Speaker of the House of Commons to be, with the least Consistency, a Courtier and a Demagogue at the same Time. He knew that if he held a lucrative Place, he could not hold his Edition: current; Page: [220] Integrity. He preferred his Duty to Trash. He preferred virtuous Liberty to ministerial Influence and Controul. He preferred Honour to Infamy, Sincerity to Duplicity, and Propriety to Absurdity. For what can be more absurd than a ductile Speaker, who is at the Head of the Commons in the Morning, and at the Ear of the Sovereign in the Evening? At one Hour in Character of a Speaker, at another in the Function of a Privy Counsellor. Now in the Peoples Chair, and now at a Ministerial Board. To Day collecting the Sense of the People, and to Morrow promoting the Intrigues of a Court. Cooperating with the People at one Instant, and forming Schemes against their Liberties at another. To crown all, let us suppose this Speaker an established Placeman for Life; to which Place an annual Income is appendant of 4000l. per Annum, and eventually twice that Sum, or more, in a Place which no subject had enjoyed for Years, till the present Speaker (Norton) broke the Ground anew. Why had it not been enjoyed for many Years before? Because it was for Life, and the Minister had not sufficient Confidence in the steady Perfidy, and superior Demerits of any one Hireling, to bestow it, till they were conscious that Norton deserved that, and more. Let us view this malleable Speaker, and patriotic Statesman, this political Proteus, this double-fronted Janus, in another Light, which will fully show the Compatibility of the two different Functions.4

Suppose a Bute or a Mansfield were to be impeached, as they well deserve, by the Commons of England (’tis but a Supposition, for Corruption at present makes it impracticable) suppose it only: Whose Duty would it be Edition: current; Page: [221] to carry up these Bills of Impeachment to the Bar of the House of Lords? Sir Fletcher Nortons. Sir Fletcher? What? a Placeman, a Pensioner, a Privy Counsellor? A Bird of the same Feather? Can Jemmy Twitcher ’peach?5 I have said enough to be sufficiently understood, and to show how inconsistent and absurd it is for a Speaker of the House of Commons, to be amphibiously inclined.

Let us now return to the noble Lords—We see among them another Majority, not indeed with Lord Bute (for he absconds) but with his Deputy, Mansfield, at their Head.—No; ’tis Lord Apsley; those insignia upon the Table are his, true, the Insignia, (the baubles, the Purse and Mace) are Apsleys; but Apsley himself is Mansfield’s, as Mansfield himself is Bute’s. These three dance the Hay, like the Sun, Moon, and Earth, in the Rehearsal; though indeed it is Lord Bute’s interest, at present to continue in Eclipse. At present that Thane is to all intents and purposes, by his two Proxies Mansfield and Apsley, at the Head of the House of Lords. He has his Majority of Myrmidons there, as well as among the Commons, where he is represented by Lord North. Where then shall we find a Patriot? in the Throne. This (alas!) would be a blessing “devoutly to be wished”.

But the three great Estates of this Kingdom, are now not in a wholesome, but a dangerous Coalition; not in Harmony, but in Combination; not in Friendship, but in Confedracy. The House of Commons now shut the Doors against their Constituents, the Lords debate in private, they are ashamed, (as they well may) of their Harrangues, These Houses are now, in truth, a Divan, a Conclave, a Junto, a Cabal, a Gang; but they are no Edition: current; Page: [222] longer what they where, or what they ought to be; they will shortly feel the Consequences, of such an unnatural Coalition. The Body Politic can never be healthy, whilst it Functions are ill-performed; yet this is the great and wise Council of the Nation, in which Soverigns will confide.

I know that a Majority of Votes can save Minions and Favourites from the SCAFFOLD; but they cannot save them from PUBLIC VENGEANCE, nor can they secure the Sovereigns Peace, Affection, and Esteem, they can augment the Civil List, from near a Million a Year to any Sum that royal profusion may demand; they can allow (without entering into pricise Accounts) what a King may expend for Public Uses, a Term of the largest the most vague and most indefinite meaning, including every Species of regal, domestic, political, and unjust Profusion; they can lay still heavier Taxes for this purpose, as well as for the carrying on the further ASSASSINATION of America; but they can neither force the united Subjects of this Kingdom to pay those unreasonable Taxes, nor heal the Wounds of a Civil War if they refuse. How will our common Enemies France and Spain, embroil the Scene? at such a Crisis will an importation of Hanoverians, Hissians, and mercinary Troops from the little States of Germany avail? From Hanoverians no Assistance can be expected, they will not be able to defend their own State against the designing and ambitious King of Prussia. That great Monarch will not forget the ill Treatment he has received from England; Civil War here will afford him the long wished-for Opportunity.

Our Standing Army (if any Part should be base enough, to Fight for Tyrants, and the Benefit of being Slaves,) will be fully employed; Such Part of it as is truly English, will join their Countrymen, and put a final Period to Despotism and Corruption.

The constitutional, and the only constitutional Force of this Kingdom, the Militia, will not fail to signalize themselves in defence of LIBERTY, in this unhappy Period will the patriotic Spirit of Ireland be still? by what foreign Power, amidst this confusion at home, is America, at last, to be protected, or enslaved? By which of her Friends the French or Spaniards? Our standing Army will be too much wanted here to afford fresh Succour to Burgoyne.

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Does that idle Notion prevail, any longer in this Century, which supplied King Charles the First with Forces and Recruits, in the last; when that blessed Martyr, endeavoured to subdue this Country to his Despotic Will by force of Arms? Is passive Obedience, non Resistance, and the Divine Right of Tyrants, of any weight even with the lowest of the People? Is not the Idea and Spirit of LIBERTY universal still? Is the Invasion of its Rights a Secret? It is true that we have long lived in an Age of Venality and Corruption, but we also live in an Age of Reason and Discernment. The meanest Individual among us knows that he has a Right to call his Life, Liberty and Property his own, and will die in their Defence.

A foolish and wicked King like the present effects, the Power of a Despot; a Patriot King uses the Authority of a Parent. A Sacrifice to Public Liberty could not be grateful to a Patriot King, it would sully his Glory, and disappoint his Views. To a weak or a designing Prince Liberty is odious, it is an Object of perpetual Terror and Alarm. Under the Reign of one, the Lives and Properties of the Subject are no longer valuable, then whilst they are employed to promote the wise Ends of paternal Government, Common Good; under the other, they are useless, unless they are exerted for the Public Safety. The People live in allegiance to the one, and in league against the other; the one reaps all the Fruits of National Confidence and Affection, the other feels all the Weight of general Distrust, and all the ignominy of individual Destruction, the one has no Favourites, and the other has no Enemies. The readiest Obedience waits upon the Father and the bitterest Execrations pursue the Despot of a Country.


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  • Molle Pecus, mutumque Metu.
  • Virg.1
  • Mansfield derides and George such Suppliants Scorns;
  • You’re a tame Herd; why don’t you use your *Horns.

A DMINISTRATION dare not, as yet (or else they would) deny the Subjects Right of PETITIONING the King; but Bute and Mansfield, will not suffer even the Petition of the first City in the Kingdom, to be received upon the Throne. Can their supreme Lordships give a Reason why? I mean a solid Reason. It is an undoubted, and till now has been an undisputed Right, which this grateful City claims, a Right, which no ROYAL TYRANT in past Ages has controuled.

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This late politic Display of Sovereign Insolence, has broke out, to dignify the present Reign; our Kings are still ready to receive a Petition from the greatest City in the Universe, but they are the Judges WHERE—at their Leveé—or in their Water Closet?—Be it ordained henceforth, that all Petitions for Redress of National Grievances, shall be received WHERE they may be most useful to the Sovereign, and least likely to rise in Judgement against the Minister.

Is it come to this at last, that one of the most essential Rights of a British Subject is to be treated with Indignity? Is it become a Farce that may be acted at a Sycophantic Levee, and attended to with as much affected Indifference as a Birth Day Ode? Is the Ground and Reason of this invaluable Right forgot? Or are the Rights of the Crown alone to be maintained, and those of the Subject trampled under Foot? Let us enquire into the Foundation of the Subject’s Right to address the Throne; we shall then see with what Propriety, Policy, or Decency, this Satisfaction is refused now. Whilst the Sovereign has a Right to Allegiance, the Subject has an equal Claim to Protection.

These Essentials form the Bond of Union, the reciprocal Relation, between the Governor and the Governed; that the State may enjoy the Benefits arising from this Union, the King becomes the Head of the Body Politic, by the Suffrage of a Free People; the People remain Members of this Body Politic, giving up their Natural Rights, by Compact with the Sovereign, for the Sake of Protection and good Government. These are the two great Ends which every Subject has in View. A King of England, on the other Hand has not a single Prerogative which is not conducive to these two great Ends. This is the true State of an English Sovereign, and an English Subject: In consequence, a good Sovereign may well expect to be obeyed without Reluctance; a loyal Subject to be heard without Contempt; if the Sovereign’s Dignity must be maintained, the Subjects Grievances must be redressed; the one is lessened by an insolent Deportment, and the other aggrivated by cold Indifference. The Prince who will not hear Information, is a FOOL; he who persists in Spite of it, is a TYRANT.

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It is a Maxim with us, “that the King can do no Wrong;” the Result of every political Evil, is imputed to his Ministers, but the unthinking Prince who checks Petitions to the Throne, rashly takes every impolitic Transgression upon himself. To this injudicious Conduct that weak Tyrant Charles the First, deluded by his ministerial Sycophants, owed his Ruin, he foresaw the Storm approaching, when it was too late to take Shelter from its Fury, his Sufferings (and just they were) should be a perpetual Lesson for Crowned Heads, but alas! they are kept (if possible) in Infancy all their Lives, at their hazard their infamous Dependants are to rise; a wise King would not only open his Ears, but his Arms, to the Information of his Subjects, they are his Creators, and they ought to be his Guides, they are in Truth his only Friends.

Till Subjects commence Slaves, neither weak Kings, nor wicked Ministers, can stand before them, no Army is sufficient in a free Country, to encounter civil Indignation and Resentment, Iniquity never can prevail till Men have lost their Reason, those who dare to think, will dare to act. To injured Subjects the sharpest of all Incentives is Contempt, the happiest expedient is Redress, the sole Right of exercising this lenient Measure, lies in the Breast of the Sovereign; if Ministers are wicked he can discard them, if venal Parliaments, at the Back of a Minister, attempt to undermine the Constitution, he can dissolve them; without proceeding to this extremity, he can, and it is his Duty to withhold his Assent whenever any Act has improvidently passed the two Houses, which is likely to be pernicious to the Nation.

In such Times of Corruption and Iniquity, every Member of the Body Politic has a Right to inform the Head (the King) of the approaching Danger, in such Times, shall a great City be repulsed? if they are to be received with unusual Indignity, such an intended Reception is equal to an actual Repulse. That Prince wants Wisdom, who is not capable of reflecting that opulent Cities are the vital Parts of his Dominions, yet what Treatment has the City of London lately met with? have they not been charged with encouraging his Majesty’s rebellious Subjects (as they are called) in America? Is it not TREASON to encourage TRAYTORS? Yet my Lord Mansfield knows that the Word (Encourage) is the Word Edition: current; Page: [228] used by his Majesty, in his Answer to the City-Petition. Now if Subjects have a Right, (and who dare deny it?) to Petition the Sovereign, they are intituled to some Degree of Decency, when they approach the Throne with a Remonstrance; because these Remonstrants are a most important Part, of those People to whom the Sovereign owes his Existence and Continuance. The Majesty of a People resides in the collective Body, not in a packed Majority of smuggled Representatives in a venal House of Commons, it is not from the Luxurious and Corrupt, but from the Industrious and Commercial Parts of the Kingdom, that this collective Body will take its Tone, they are the Sinews of the State. The rotten Commons, and still more rotten Peers, are but as Straws floating lightly upon the Surface of this great Community, these are the Bees that make the Honey, and those the idle Drones, that rob the public Hives; yet these alone are the Persons whom the “King delighteth to Honour,” they alone are received with Smiles.

The incense of Flattery is grateful, the Voice of Truth an abomination, to the Throne, the Sovereign (tho’ not to be surfeited with supplies) is grown sick of information; Petitions are therefore to be received at LEVEES, there they will be handed to a Lord in waiting (one of the corrupt Gang) and neither opened nor heard of, afterwards, but when Petitions are received upon the Throne, a King cannot stop his Ears; their Contents, their Reception, and the Answer, are notorious, the whole World may then look on, and either applaud the Wisdom, or be astonished at the Justice of the Sovereign.

Can TYRANTS who violate the Laws of God, fear the sentence of this earthly Forum? Is it for this pusillanimous Reason, Public Remonstrances are to be treated like private Petitions, presented by indignant Individuals? Are the City of London to be received like Paupers in the Corner of a Levee? Do they come for Alms, or for Redress? Do they come to solicit a Pension, or to claim a Right? Do they sue for the Performance of a jobbing Contract made with a perfidious Minister, or for an Establishment and due Observence in future, of that Compact made between the Crown and the Subject, at the Revolution? If they come in the latter Shape, the Importance of their Suit demands all the Dignity and Attention of the Sovereign. Edition: current; Page: [229] If Petitions of such a serious Nature, can be baffled by a careless, light Reception at a Levee of Idolatrous Placemen, and needy Mendicants, every Avenue of Honest Information is shut up by the false FRIENDS of deluded MAJESTY; the Sovereign is still kept in a State of Darkness and dangerous Perseverance, for the Sake of a Ministerial GANG of Public ROBBERS, at the Hazard of the Property, Lives, and Liberties of a whole Empire.

The iniquitons Proceedings of this atrocious GANG in the last, and present Parliament, which they packed, fully justify me in branding them with the Name of PUBLIC ROBBERS. Let them look into the Black Journals of their Guilty HOUSES—There they will find that Individuals, Corporations, Electing Counties in Great Britain (not to mention the vast Continent of America and the Colonies, Merchants, and Manufacturers, dependent on it) have been deprived of their Rights, their Liberties, and Lives, by that Banditti, who call themselves the KING’s FRIENDS, yet act like ENEMIES to him, and to their Country.

Let me ask these National RAVAGERS, have no Royal Assents been given by their Procurement, to Bills most pernicious in their consequences to the whole British Empire? If so, are those Remonstrances, which seek a Repeal of these destructtive Acts, to be smothered in Oblivion? Are they to be stifled by those Guilty Parents to whom they owe their Birth? Are they to be crushed in the Pocket of some Lordly Lacquey, who attends a PRIVATE LEVEE? Shall those wicked Counsellors, who have brought on the Ruin of an Empire, stand for ever before the King? Shall Bute and Mansfield, with their dependent Shadows, North and Apsley, still be suffered to whisper at the Ear of Majesty? Whilst the Nation is justly alarmed for her Liberties, shall these domestic Spoilers be suffered to pursue their Triumph in Defiance of Great Britain and America? They have long trembled, and are now in hourly Fear of popular Petitions.

These would open the Way (should they at last meet with due Attention) first to their Removal from the King’s Presence, and then to fatal Enquiries—To the Salvation of Great Britain and America, and to the Punishment of an Infernal GANG of National Parricides. They, on the other Hand, fearing only for themselves, wish to stop all Access to the Edition: current; Page: [230] Sovereign’s Ear, and every Appeal to his Understanding, or his Heart. England cannot look with Unconcern upon the Sufferings of America. Her Claim is just, she says, and she says truely, that Taxation (when it is for the single Purpose of taking Money out of her Pocket) and Representation are, and must necessarily be, reciprocal. In every other Respect She submits (as a Colony) to the Legislature of her Mother Country; She submits to all those Laws of England, which affect the general System of Policy throughout the Empire of Great Britain; but She says wisely, that the Money which She acquires by the Sweat of her own Brow, is not the Money of the People of England; and therefore cannot be given away by such Persons as represent the People of England only.2

It is no Objection, that all the People of England are not represented themselves; because it is well known, that they were once represented to a Man; but some of the poorer Counties petitioned the King (in the Infancy of Parliaments) that they might be excused from sending up Representatives to appear for them in the Great Council of the Nation, as they could not afford to pay their Expences and they were excused accordingly.

Thus stands the Case of America, whom Administration are labouring to bring under the absolute Yoke of their corrupt Parliamentary Majority: Unless they can compass this, they know that neither America, nor Great Britain (whom they keep like an Apple in their Jaw, as Hamlet says, first mouthed to be last swallowed)3 can be effectually enslaved. Unless America can be massacred, and her refractory Numbers reduced, Edition: current; Page: [231] by Sword and Famine, within a Possibility of Controul, She will set a terrible Example of SPIRIT to her MOTHER COUNTRY, for whom a Net is likewise already spread. Till America is totally subdued, the Liberties of Great Britain, cannot be finally extinguished. The Aim of the present despotic Administration, and their servile MAJORITY, is plain: They wish to bring America not only under the Yoke of our Legislature, but of their standing Army, with which they will keep them under Foot for ever, should they conquer now. Should they fail in this Diabolical design; America rising from her Ruins, will erect an Empire of her own; an Asylum for the distressed Subjects of her MOTHER COUNTRY; who, as they seem at present careless about the RIGHTS, will at last retain the Name of ENGLISHMEN. But should our Parricides succeed, and America be once subdued, the whole British Empire will in due Time be Slaves.—Then will the Patriotic Scheme of our present Virtuous Administration be compleat; their Friendship to their KING, their Affection for their COUNTRY; the vain Confidence of the one, the well grounded distrust of the other, will appear. The secret Machinations of the Cabinet, the superior Wisdom of the Great Council of the Nation, will be disclosed, to the eternal Shame and Infamy of those, who must neither presume to call themselves Britons nor Men, if they long continue thus tamely to PETITION when they ought to ACT. Then shall We all deserve the Ridicule of the Sarcastic Mansfield, and be, in very deed, a tame Herd of Animals, among whom the worst of all Distempers (Slavery) may be said to rage; whilst we dare not avail ourselves either of our HOOFS, or HORNS.


N.B. The Authors of the CRISIS acknowledge with gratitude, the various Favours received from their able, judicious, and sensible, Correspondent CASCA, which will be carefully attended to.

☞ The Authors of the CRISIS present their respectful Compliments to CATO, and return him Thanks for his Spirited Address to the KING, which shall be made the Subject of our next Number; the Authors fear no TYRANT, nor the Instruments of TYRANY, and Edition: current; Page: [232] they will always pay particular attention to the future Correspondence of CATO, who breaths the Godlike Sentiments of FREEDOM. They embrace this Opportunity of contradicting a most Infamous Report, no less INDUSTRIOUSLY than FALSELY Propagated by the Emissaries of the present infernal Administration. “That the CRISIS was set on Foot, and is countenanced by the Ministry as a Pretence for laying a Restraint on the Press.” The Authors beg Leave to declare in the most solemn Manner, before God and Man, that such Assertions have not the least Foundation in Truth, and that they are circulated by a Tribe of PENSIONED RASCALS, who are employed to write down Truth, and establish Falshood, only with a View to DECEIVE and MISLEAD the People, and to draw their Attention from the true Channel of FAITHFUL Information, and from that DESTRUCTION with which they are now threatened. The CRISIS was set on Foot with a Design to support and defend the CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS and PRIVILEGES of England and America, which the Authors hold equally dear with their LIVES. It was set on Foot at a Time when the LIBERTY of the PRESS was nearly destroyed, or rendered useless, by Ministerial Prosecutions; a Scotch CHIEF JUSTICE, and the Dastardly Souls of narrow-minded Printers, who were afraid to give a TYRANT his true Appellation. The Authors are determined to Write like ENGLISHMEN unawed by FEAR, or Prosecution, to SPEAK bold Truths, such Truths as some would fear to THINK. Freedom of Speech and Writing is one of the FIRST, and most Glorious PRIVILEGES of a FREE People; this the Authors Claim as a RIGHT, and this they are firmly Resolved to use and Defend; for to this Privilege we may again stand indebted, for another REVOLUTION.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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To be continued Weekly

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.


To the KING.

  • Each British Ghost by Thee depriv’d of Breath,
  • Now hovers round, and calls Thee to thy Death.
  • Popes Homer.1
    • REFORM thy Conduct, Monarch, or attend,
    • The Doom denounc’d, by Virtu’s constant Friend,
    • Heav’ns awful God, his Mandate ’tis I bear,
    • And call on George’s callous Soul to hear.
    • Reform thy Conduct, or expect that Heav’n,
    • By whom thy delegated Pow’r is giv’n,
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    • Will rouse in Wrath; and hurl thee from the Throne,
    • Unworthy Prince, whom Britons blush to own.
    • See Civil Rage torment the bleeding Land,
    • Rais’d and supported by a Monarch’s Hand;
    • Permit me Prince, t’unfold the dreadful Scene,
    • And Actions that disgrace the Name of Men,
    • See British Legions reeking from the Sword.
    • Of worthless Britons, and their misled Lord,
    • The orphan’d Son, the helpless Mother see,
    • Plung’d in the depths of awful Misery;
    • Youth and hoary Age lie whelt’ring on the Plains,
    • And Desolation and Destruction reigns:
    • Such Scenes as these must sure your Soul appall,
    • Thou art th’ Occasion, thou the Cause of all;
    • Whate’er thy cursed Minions can design,
    • Thou giv’st Assent, and the whole Guilt is THINE;
    • See Britain wasted by her Father’s Sword,
    • And France and ev’ry foreign Aid implor’d;
    • Suppose they shou’d be conqur’d, what remains,
    • What can be had from CAPTIVES and from CHAINS;
    • What large Revenues can your Coffers Boast,
    • From ruin’d Cities, and a wasted Coast,
    • From Nations slaughter’d, and from Seas of Blood,
    • What Gain to make the MIGHTY MISCHIEF GOOD.
    • Remember Prince, on what precerious ties,
    • The uncertain Safety of a TYRANT lies;
    • What poor Defence will Guards, and Armies yield,
    • When long insulted Subjects take the Field;
    • What Safety then can Parasites bestow,
    • Or how elude the long deserved Blow;
    • When Justice rises and demands the BLOOD
    • Of haughty TYRANTS, and their fawning Crowd;
    • Ah, blush, deluded Prince, with conscious Shame,
    • That GEORGE should merit that detested Name.
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    • Search British Annals, and let them declare,
    • Those Truths too harsh to wound the Royal Ear;
    • See brave Fitzwalter lead the Barons on,
    • And force the unwilling Deed from Coward (1) JOHN;
    • With Iron Sway the blustring Dastard rules,
    • The constant Dupe of swarming Knaves and Fools.
    • (2)“The weakest Athiest Wretch all Heav’n defies,
    • Who shrinks and shudders when the Thunder flies.”
    • So shrunk the TYRANT, when Fitzwalter led,
    • His warlike Cohorts on to Runny (3) Mead
    • Then Ancient Windsor’s lofty Tow’rs beheld,
    • The blazing Standards waving o’er the Field,
    • The shining Jav’lins glittering from afar,
    • The moony shields and all the pomp of war;
    • Sheath’d in bright Steel then Britains SAVIOURS stood,
    • Undaunted, firm, and resolutely good;
    • Forth in the midst the frowning TYRANT came,
    • And viewed with FEAR and RAGE each Godlike Name;
    • The Coward shrunk at Britains brave array,
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    • And MAGNA CHARTA (1) crown’d the glorious Day,
    • Search further yet how Edward’s (2) Minions fell,
    • That galling Truth, to BUTE and MANSFIELD tell.
    • May every Curse, vindictive Heaven can pour,
    • Descend on them, in one destructive Shower,
    • Perish their Names, O! let the TRAITORS Bleed;
    • Justice demands, the Realm approves the Deed.
    • Proceed and be by faithful Hist’ry taught,
    • How Essex labour’d, and great Cromwell fought;
    • When haughty CHARLES disgrac’d the British Throne
    • And trod our Freedom and Religion down.
    • That dreadful CRISIS big with loud alarms,
    • Call’d every Briton to assert in ARMS
    • The dear bought Rights, the violated Cause,
    • Of their dear Country and its SACRED LAWS;
    • They came obedient to the glorious call.
    • One generous Spirit animated all:
    • Such generous Souls may Brittain yet afford.
    • And own again a CROMWELL’s Saving Sword;
    • An Hampden (3) yet, an Essex (4) yet may rise,
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    • And TYRANTS yet may fall as Sacrifice.
    • Illustrious Shades the faithful Muse shall Crown,
    • Your glorious Names, with Honour and Renown,
    • Long as this World with all its Splendor stands,
    • Stupendous Frame, rais’d by Immortal Hands,
    • Long as the Annals of Eternal Fame,
    • Record each Hero’s and each Patriot’s Name,
    • Long as a Briton lives t’ assert the Cause,
    • Of Heaven, of Freedom, and the British Laws;
    • So long shall Cromwell’s, Hampdens, Name remain
    • And Times erasing Vengeance prove in vain.
    • Inspire your Children, O ye Patriot Band,
    • To rush on Death, and save a sinking Land;
    • You who could haughty Tyranny repell,
    • Protect the Cause, in which you nobly fell,
    • That glorious Cause, which Heaven eternal owns,
    • And fires to Vengeance your too tardy Sons:
    • They rise at length, t’ assert the Freedom given;
    • T’ assert the Cause of Liberty and Heaven;
    • Tremble thou TYRANT at the awful Day,
    • When injur’d Britons give their Vengeance way;
    • Tremble ye Minions who your Prince misled,
    • Uncommon Wrath remains for you to dread,
    • The Traytors who your Sovereign’s Heart have steel’d,
    • And cur’st him with a Soul that cannot yield,
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    • Eternal Vengeance must your Crimes pursue,
    • Justice demands you, as the Public due.
    • Unfeeling Man, if e’er thy Soul can know,
    • Steel’d as it is, the touch of Human Woe;
    • If generous Pity can a thought impart,
    • To shake the horrid Purpose of your Heart,
    • If Pity harbours in that Iron Breast,
    • Call back your Cutthroats, give your People rest;
    • Withdraw your Fleets, send no more Armies o’er,
    • But bid the Martial Thunders cease to roar,
    • Do this, and Britain may again forgive,
    • Again consent to let a TYRANT live.
    • But dare not triffle with a Moment given,
    • Presumptous Prince, nor sport with awful Heaven,
    • Think not that Britons passive will remain,
    • Hug the vile Yoke, and Smile upon the Chain;
    • They have not learnt the Faith which Cowards own,
    • (1) “Th’ enormous Faith of many made for one,”
    • Far nobler precepts Fire the British Breast,
    • Then yielding FREEDOM for INGLORIOUS REST;
    • Far nobler ends their Free-Born Spirits own,
    • Then basely crouching to a TYRANTS Throne;
    • Such base Concessions stain’d not BRITAINS FAME,
    • When (2) Charles, DEATH IMMORTALIS’D their Name;
    • Or Guilty James (3) his injur’d Subjects fled,
    • Lay hid in France and trembled for his Head;
    • Remember this, O Monarch, nor presume;
    • On tir’d out Faith and Lenity to come.
    • Edition: current; Page: [239]
    • The Sword is drawn and hellish Discord roars,
    • Let loose by Mansfield on North Amrick’s, Shores;
    • The trait’rous Thane t’ enslave a Nation joins,
    • And blust’ring North avows their cur’st designs;
    • (1) George too consents and Signs the horrid Deed,
    • By which unnumber’d INNOCENTS must BLEED.
    • With tenfold Rage, inspire, O Muse, the Strain,
    • To Paint the Horrors of this Guilty Reign;
    • Young ALLEN dies in his paternal Field,
    • And murder’d Laws, audacious Murderers shield,
    • The Sovereign too t’ enlarge the mighty Guilt,
    • Thanks his dear Scotsmen for the Blood they’ve spilt,
    • Petitions spurn’d at, with a sulky Frown,
    • The Monarch drives his Subjects from the Throne,
    • (2) Astonishd that those Subjects dare to sue,
    • For Fellow Subjects, Rebels in his view,
    • Tells them his firm, his steady Soul retains
    • Its iron Purpose, and his Heart remains
    • Inflexible, determin’d to enslave,
    • And Murder Thousands he had Sworn to save.
    • Remember Prince the Throne to GEORGE was given,
    • T’ Assert the Cause of LIBERTY and HEAVEN,
    • But when he ceases FREEDOM to maintain,
    • And dares attempt, unaw’d by LAWS to Reign,
    • When Heavens great Cause is spurn’d at and forgot,
    • And horrid Popish Superstition taught, (3)
    • Edition: current; Page: [240]
    • The Cause that gave the Scepter them demands,
    • The same again from his unworthy Hands.
    • Resign, Proud Man, with Shame resign the Throne,
    • And let Contrition for your Faults attone,
    • Or once again the call of Heaven attend,
    • And be your Peoples, not your Minions Friend,
    • Do this and Britain may again forgive,
    • And let a Tyrant thus repenting Live.
    • Your hopes of Conquest on North Amricks Coast,
    • Are blasted, and your Expectations lost,
    • Your Armys routed, and your Generals driven
    • Back to their Fleets, the Sport of angry Heaven;
    • (1) When they embark’d, what storm’s convuls’d the Pole,
    • What Light’nings flash’d, what awful Thunders roll;
    • ’Tis GOD against you in his Wrath declares,
    • Their are his Omens, and his Thunder theirs,
    • Say can your Madness stand the dire Alarms,
    • Say can you meet OMNIPOTENCE in Arms.
    • But hark they call you from the Realms of dead,
    • The dauntless Souls that for their Country BLED,
    • At Concord (2) Slaughter’d, lay the glorious Train,
    • That met the British TYRANT with disdain,
    • The call for Vengeance from the Shades below,
    • And Point at you the Author of their Woe.
    • My Soul’s on fire, distinctions are forgot,
    • I’ll speak to Tyrants, as a Briton ought;
    • By THEE our plains lie steep’d in human blood,
    • By THEE our rivers pour a purple flood
    • By THEE the British glories are no more,
    • Edition: current; Page: [241]
    • And vast destruction whelms th’ Atlantic shore;
    • By THEE our cities dread the dire alarms,
    • And horrid slaughters of fraternal arms;
    • Thy trait’rous ministers the deed design,
    • THOU giv’st assent, and the whole GUILT is THINE:
    • Wave after wave, the mighty mischiefs flow,
    • Thick and more thick, the threat’ning dangers grow;
    • Impartial ages yet to come will read,
    • With secret horror each infernal deed;
    • Rend THEE, like Stuart, from the rolls of fame,
    • And unborn millions curse a G——’s name.
    • CATO2.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [242] Edition: current; Page: [243]


To be continued Weekly

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

By his Excellency Thomas Shaw, PROTECTOR and DEFENDER of MAGNA CHARTA, and the BILL of RIGHTS.


WHEREAS the infatuated Multitudes, of Royal Neronian Dependants, Catamites, Pimps, and Parasites, too many to be enumerated; have long conducted themselves as Parricides and Traitors in a fatal Progression of Crimes, against the Constitutional Liberties of the British Empire, and have at length proceeded to avowed and open Rebellion against the Laws of the Land, and the LIVES of Englishmen in England and America, and the good Effects which were expected to arise from the Patience and Lenity of the People, have been often frustrated, and Remonstrance proved ineffecttual and now rendered hopeless, from the Obstinacy and Cruelty of the SOVEREIGN, by the Influence of their infernal Counsels, and Confederacy, it only remains for the PEOPLE, who have the SUPREME POWER, as well for the Punishment of those guilty Parricides, as for Edition: current; Page: [244] the Protection of the Innocent, to prove they do not bear the SWORD in VAIN.

The Infringements which have been committed upon the sacred Rights of MAGNA CHARTA and the People of Great Britain and America, are too many to enumerate on one Side, and all too atrocious, too infamous, and too diabolical to be palliated on the other. All un-prejudiced, un-pensioned, and un-placed Englishmen, who have been Witness, (or even heard) of the late Transactions, in this Kingdom and America, will find, upon a transiant Review, Marks of Premeditation and Conspiracy to destroy the Constitution of the British Empire, that would Justify the fullness of Chastisement; and even those who are least acquainted with Facts, cannot fail to receive a Just Impression of the Enormity, in proportion as they discover the Arts and Assiduity, by which their Bloody Designs have been falsified and concealed. Those Parricides, the Authors of the present BLOODY Measures and un-natural Revolt from the Laws, never daring to trust their CAUSE, or their ACTIONS, to the Judgment of an impartial Public, or even to the dispassionate Reflection of their Followers and Adherents, have uniformly placed their chief Confidence in the Suppression of Truth; and while indefatigable and shameless Pains have been taken to Destroy the real Interest of the People of England and America, the grossest Forgeries, Calumnies, and Absurdities, that ever insulted Human Understanding, have been imposed upon their Credulity, by the KING, and those Miscreants. The Press, that distinguished Appendage of Public Liberty, and when fairly and impartially employed, its best Support, has been invariably Prostituted by those Pensioned Rascals, Hume, Johnson, Kelly, Shebbeare, and other Ministerial Hirelings, to the most contrary Purposes.1 The animated Language of Ancient and Virtuous Times, calculated to vindicate and promote the just Rights and Interests of Mankind, have been applied Edition: current; Page: [245] by the KING’S MINIONS, to countenance the most abandoned Violations of those sacred Blessings, and not only from the flagitious Ministerial Prints, but from the slavish Harangues of prostituted Peers, and venal Senators, Men have been taught to depend upon Activity in Shedding of Blood, for the Security of their PLACES, PENSIONS, and PERSONS, till to complete the horrid Profanation of Terms and of Ideas, the Name of GOD, has been introduced in ADDRESSES and in the Pulpit, by a Groupe of rotten Popish Bishops, to excite Devastation and Massacre.

The Minds of Men, such as Gage, Percy, Burgoyne, Clinton and Howe, and the KING’s Mercenary Soldiers,2 having been thus gradually prepared for MURDER, a Number of armed Troops to the Amount of Eighteen Hundred, and upwards, on the 19th of April last, at CONCORD, cowardly attacked about SIXTY peaceable Americans, who not expecting so consumate an Act of Savage Barbarity, unprepared for vengeance, and willing to decline it, made use of their Arms only in their own Defence.3-Since that Period, the MERCENARIES, deriving Confidence from Impunity, have added Insult to Outrage; have repeatedly fired upon, and barbarously killed many of their Fellow Subjects, with Cannon and small Arms; and with a preposterous Parade of Military Arrangement, they try to frighten, and mean if possible to enslave America, while Part of their Body make daily and indiscriminate Invasions upon Private Property, and with a Wantonness of Cruelty, peculiar in this REIGN, and ever incident to Lawless Power, carry Depredation and Edition: current; Page: [246] Distress where ever they turn their Steps. The Action of the 19th of April, and the Cruel, Bloody, and Inhuman Circumstances attending that Day’s CARNAGE, are of such Notoriety, as must baffle all Attempts to contradict them; and the Flames of Buildings, the Cries of helpless infirm Old Men, Women, and Children, wantonly slaughtered in COOL BLOOD, spread, and will for ever stand a Melancholy Confirmation of the subsequent Assertions.

In this exigency of Neronian Cruelty and complicated Calamities I avail myself of the last Efforts, within the Bounds of my Duty, as a peaceable Subject, to spare the Effusion of Blood; to Offer, and I do hereby, in the Name of the WHOLE PEOPLE of England and America, Offer and Promise a most gracious Pardon, to all the Mercenaries who shall forthwith lay down their Arms, and return to the Duties of Peaceable Subjects and Faithful Englishmen, loyal to the Laws and the Constitution, excepting only from such Pardon, John Stuart, Earl of Bute, and William, Lord Mansfield, the Authors and Promoters of Bloodshed and Cruelty, whose Crimes are of too Flagitious a Nature to admit of any other Consideration than that of Condign Punishment.

And to the End that no person within the Limits of this proffered Mercy may plead ignorance of the Consequences of refusing it, I by these presents proclaim not only the Persons above named and expected, but also their Adherents, Associates, and abettors, meaning to comprehend in those Terms, all and every Person and Persons, of what Class, Denomination, or Description soever, who have appeared in arms against the SACRED LAWS and CONSTITUTION of the British Empire, and shall not lay down the same as aforesaid; and likewise all such as shall so take Arms after the Date hereof, or who shall in any wise protect or conceal such Offenders, or assist them with Money, Provisions, Cattle, Arms, Ammunition, Carriages, or any other Necessary for Subsistence or Defence, or shall hold secret Correspondence with the MERCENARY MURDERERS, by Letter Message, Signal or otherwise, to be Rebels and Traitors to the British Constitution, and as such to be treated.

And whereas during the continuance of the present BLOODY and UNNATURAL CIVIL WAR in America, Justice cannot be obtained by Edition: current; Page: [247] the common Law of the Land, the Course whereof has for a long time past been violently impeded, and wholly interrupted by the King and his Paracidial Minions and Military Cut-throats, from whence results a necessity, in Order to preserve the dear bought Rights of Englishmen and hallowed Constitution of the Empire, for using and exercising the Lex Talionis, or Law of Retaliation;4 I have therefore thought fit by the Authority invested in me by MAGNA CHARTA as a FREEMAN, to Publish, and I do hereby Publish, Proclaim, and order the use and exercise of the Lax Talionis, or Blood for Blood, within and throughout Great Britain and America, so long as the present unhappy occasion shall necessarily require, till the Sons of Freedom shall gain a decisive victory over TYRANNY and LAWLESS POWER, till each Parricide and Traitor shall be brought to the Block or the Gallows, or otherwise fall a sacrifice by the Hands of a much injured and enraged People, and till the Liberties of England and America are settled upon a sure and lasting Foundation, not to be again shaken by any Tyrant of the House of Brunswick; whereof all true Englishmen are hereby required to take Notice, and ARM themselves—with a Resolution as well to maintain their Rights, as to resist encounter, and subdue the Merconaries and Traitors above described.

To these inevitable, but I trust Salutary measures, it is of a far more pleasing part of my duty to add the assurances of protection and Support to all who in so trying a Crisis shall manifest no allegiance to Tyrants, but an Affection for the sacred constitution of their Country;—So that such Persons as may have been induced to join in the present Royal and Ministerial Measures for destroying the Laws, Liberties, and LIVES of their fellow Subjects in America, may return to their respective callings and professions, be no longer the Instruments of MURDER and PUBLIC RUIN, but stand distinct and separate from the Parricides of the Constitution, till God in his mercy shall turn the Hearts of Tyrants, and restore Peace to this distracted Land, now polluted with INNOCENT BLOOD.

Edition: current; Page: [248]

Given at London, the 28th Day. of July, in the 15th Year of the Tyrannical Reign of his Merciful M——G——the T——Defender of the Romish Faith, Traitors, and Murderers, &c. Anno Domini, 1775.

By his Excellency’s Command,
Thomas Bradshaw, Secretary.


Notwithstanding the Royal lying Gazette has given us an Account, signed by that BLOODY Monster in Human Shape, General Gage, of another Massacre in America, on the 17th of June last, wherein this modern Kirk extols his Officers and Mercanary Soldiers, stimulated by Liquor, and Promises of Plunder, to slaughter their Fellow Subjects, for their Valour and Bravery, and boasts his having gained something like a Victory, over the brave and virtuous Americans, fighting for LIBERTY, whom that Wretch calls REBELS; yet the public may depend this pretended Superiority of his Troops, Conduct of his Officers, and Mighty Victory is a LYE; and it will soon be proved, from unquestionable Authority, that he has lost some Hundreds of his men, more than is mentioned in the Gazette of Tuesday last, which contains the most notorious Falshoods, and infamous Impositions on the Public, calculated to deceive the People here, and to Spirit up the few remaining Troops we have in England, to embark with the greater Readiness to the field of Slaughter in America, there to fall a just Sacrifice to the injured Laws, and glorious Liberties of the British Empire: it will likewise appear that General Gage’s Army, with all the Advantage of Artillery, and the Assistance of several Ships of War, and armed Vessels. was obliged to retreat to their Barracks and sneaking Holes in Boston, under Protection of the Men of War.

Edition: current; Page: [249]

If it was ever necessary to rouse the sleeping Genius of England, to excite a generous Emulation of our warlike Forefathers, and to animate every Briton, by their Example, to fight valiantly, to conquer nobly, or perish gloriously in Defence of his Country—This is certainly the Time.

If it was ever necessary for the People of England to rise altogether as one man, and fall like a torrent on the Bloody Tyrannical invaders of their Lives and Liberties, and overwhelm them in the midst of their fancied insolent security—it is surely at this time.

If it was ever necessary for the People to enter into an association, to express and fully explain in a MANIFESTO the causes of their discontent; and to declare they take up Arms to put a stop to the encroachments of those who Govern in the King’s name; to bring to condign Punishment the betrayers of their Country; to preserve their Rights and Liberties from farther violations; to restore the Laws and the Constitution now tottering to its base, to their pristine rigour; to prevent the inhuman Slaughter of their fellow Subjects in America by the Hand of Lawless power; to enforce a due obedience to MAGNA CHARTA from the King and his Ministers; to oblige his Majesty to dismiss those Parricides and Traitors who surround his Throne, and to restore the Ancient independence and freedom of Parliaments: If such a measure was ever necessary to preserve the People and Kingdom from Slavery and Ruin—it is NOW. But alas! It is (I fear) in vain to appeal to the reason or to the passions of Englishmen, they seem to have lost their very nature and Genius they seem to have forgot the arts of War, and the blessings of Freedom; they have fatally degenerated into Luxury and Vice, and at last become insensible to every generous Sentiment of Public Liberty; they have lost the Virtue, the courage, and Bravery of their glorious Ancestors; and are now looked upon by surrounding Nations, as a Herd of pusillanimous Drones, devoted to slavery, or doomed to Destruction.

N. B. The Authors of the CRISIS are anxious for the Welfare of their much-admired and spirited correspondent CASCA, and hope to remove their Fears of his indisposition, to hear from him soon.

Junius’s Address to the King has been fetched from the Place he directed.—The Apprehension Junius mentions in his private Letter to T. W. Edition: current; Page: [250] Shaw is groundless.—The Authors of the CRISIS are but too sensible, of the many shameful Blunders, and gross Mistakes, that have appeared in several Numbers of their Paper, entirely owing to the Carelessness and inattention of the PRINTER.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House; where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [251]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two Pence Half-penny.

To the KING.

  • Grasp not at Sceptres, which may turn to Rods,
  • To Day is your’s, To-morrow is the God’s.
  • Lee’s Sophonisba, Act V. Scene I.1
  • ONCE more to stay the Fury of the Sword,
  • Cato addresses Britain’s misled Lord;
  • Grasp not at Sceptres, by a Tyrant’s Rules,
  • A servile Empire is the Curse of Fools;
  • Freedom to Man did Heaven’s great God ordain,
  • Shall Man presume that Freedom to restrain;
  • Vain Mortal, can’st thou bid thy Light’nings fly,
  • Or hurl like him, thy Thunders thro’ the Sky;
  • Edition: current; Page: [252]
  • And dar’st thou then annul the Gift of Heaven,
  • And strive t’abridge the Freedom God has giv’n:
  • Cease, cease, presumptuous Prince; nor longer dare
  • ’Gainst God and Man to Wage unequal War;
  • ’Tis Heaven asserts each individuals Right,
  • Oppressing them, ’gainst Heaven itself you fight.
  • Think not ’tis Malice that incites the Pen
  • Of Cato, thus t’address the first of Men;
  • Heav’n knows my Heart, and knows it is sincere,
  • And Heaven is Witness while I solemn swear;
  • Thou hast not on the glorious British Shore
  • A single Subject that reveres thee more;
  • I love the Name of George, I love my King,
  • But hate the Traitors, whence these Evils spring;
  • Call’d forth in Arms t’assert my Country’s Cause,
  • I’d dye with Joy for Brunswick and the Laws;
  • Those Laws for which your Family has fought,
  • And Principles your God-like Grandsire taught;
  • Tenets avow’d by him, from whence you came,
  • (What Glories wait on his all-honour’d name)
  • Illustrious Frederick, how each Briton glows,
  • To see his Prince a Minister oppose;
  • Walpole shrunk back, when foremost Frederick came,2
  • Edition: current; Page: [253]
  • And glorious Pitt supported every claim;
  • When (*) Pultney rose to t’assert the injur’d Laws,
  • And Wyndham Argued in his Country’s Cause;
  • On Frederick’s Heir impatient Britons wait,
  • And hail great Great George, the Savior of the State:
  • Your glorious Grandsires Conduct Prince review,
  • And be the Father of your People too;
  • But are you so, can God-like Truth declare,
  • “You are not (answers the dire Pow’r of War)
  • My Reign extends along the frighted Shore,
  • Edition: current; Page: [254]
  • Witness you Hills of Slain, you Seas of Gore;
  • The Plains of Lexington dire Prospect rise,
  • And call for Vengeance from the frowning Skies.”
  • Let’s try the Cause from whence these Evils spring,
  • And view the TYRANT and the PATRIOT King.
  • See the pale Wretch sit trembling on the Car,
  • Greatly unhappy ’midst his Crouds of War,
  • Hem’d in with Arms, beset with Swords and Spears,
  • His very State acknowledging his Fears;
  • Marching amidst a Thousand Guards he shows,
  • His secret Horror of a Thousand Foes,
  • ’Midst all his Triumph, trembling at the Guilt,
  • And shrinking from the BLOOD his Hands have spilt,
  • The Cries of injured Innocence prevail,
  • And Justice sternly lifts her broken Scale,
  • Vengeance stands by and points th’eternal pow’r,
  • And stifled Conscience arms the dreadful Hour;
  • (*) Some Voice of God close whispering from within,
  • “Wretch., this is Villany, and this is Sin,”)
  • Each rustling Wind the haughty Tyrant hears,
  • Fills him with conscious Dread and Causeless Fears;
  • Though Thousand Guards around his Chariot wait,
  • And Kings in Triumph led proclaim his State;
  • Though crouding Laurels wreath his conqu’ring Brow,
  • In every Face the Tyrant fears a Foe,
  • Greatly unhappy in his Breast he feels,
  • Torments surpassing Flames, and Racks and Wheels.
  • O how unlike him is the Patriot Name,
  • Fear march’d before where’er the Tyrant came;
  • Here LOVE alone prepares the Hero’s Way,
  • And Joy and smiling Pleasure ever gay,
  • Edition: current; Page: [255]
  • Around his Triumph the glad nations wait,
  • And hail him home, the Father of the State;
  • Chearful, serene, the tranquil Monarch moves,
  • His People’s LOVE a constant ARMY proves;
  • He needs not Guards, the Sword, or brandish’d Spear,
  • Nor all the Dreadful Habiliments of War;
  • A sacred Calmness lulls his conscious Breast,
  • With sweet Composure, and with heartfelt Rest,
  • Secure in Heaven bred Innocence he stands,
  • The Sire belov’d of the surrounding Bands,
  • The general Voice proclaims him o’er the Rest,
  • At once the first, the wisest, and the Best;
  • “From Conscious Virtue strong Assurance flows,
  • Whose CAUSE is RIGHT can brave a THOUSAND FOES,
  • Such conscious Virtue fires the Patriot Mind,
  • Devoid of Ill, to every Good inclin’d,
  • He Lives but for his Country’s Good, his Care
  • Still points at that, his Soul is center’d there.
  • Say, which of these can Britain’s Monarch claim,
  • Th’ Tyrant’s hated, or, th’ Patriot’s honour’d Name,
  • May Heaven, indulgent for our Errors past,
  • Forgive, and George again assume the Last.
  • See Heaven consents, Americans still sue
  • To George, and once more beg their Peace from you;
  • Slight not their Overtures, offend not Heav’n,
  • Nor trifle with the precious Moment given,
  • United firm, in honourable Peace,
  • May every Woe, with Civil Discord cease;
  • Now is the Time, now is the important Hour,
  • And Peace is yet within a GEORGE’S Power;
  • To Day attend, attend your Peoples Pray’r,
  • Call back your Armies, and consent to spare;
  • To Day attend, the next may be too late,
  • To save a Nation from impending Fate.
  • To Day is yours, the gracious Call attend,
  • Edition: current; Page: [256]
  • And bid America be Britain’s Friend;
  • Peace with its Blessings, to these Realms restore,
  • And bid the Martial Thunders cease to roar,
  • Do this, and grateful Thousands shall revere,
  • The Name of GEORGE, and Love as well as Fear.
  • Remove, for ever, from the British Throne,
  • The Traitors who their Country have undone,
  • The titled Villains, whose protracted Fate,
  • Just Heaven delays, to make their Ruin great,
  • Let not imploring Millions sue in vain,
  • But hope from thee this Justice to obtain;
  • Rise, rise, vindictive and with dreadful Ire,
  • Bid the Black Traitors back to HELL retire,
  • Do this, and GEORGE’S ever honour’d Name,
  • The foremost Place ’mongst Britain’s Chiefs shall claim.
  • This precious Moment, Heav’ns indulgent Pow’r
  • In Mercy gives, embrace the auspicious Hour,
  • Behold the Genius of North Amrick stand,
  • The SWORD and OLIVE waving in her Hand,
  • Chuse WAR or PEACE, the great Decision lies,
  • On THEE, the World attends with anxious Eyes;
  • By YOU must Peace with all its Blessings reign,
  • or CIVIL RAGE embroil the British Plain;
  • Weigh well the Importance of this trying Hour,
  • And seize the Moments, yet within your Power;
  • Do this, or hear an injured Nation say,
  • VENGEANCE is theirs, and they will sure repay;
  • Can pension’d Rascals, who your Throne surround
  • Protect that Throne, when tott’ring to the Ground,
  • Can Mansfield when much injur’d Subjects rise,
  • Or BUTE, Protect you with fallacious Lies;
  • Edition: current; Page: [257]
  • Can Jenkinson and Rigby Realms engage,3
  • Or Wav’ring NORTH support a People’s Rage;
  • Will bullying then, their Monarchs Cause sustain,
  • When gasping Britain bleeds at every Vein;
  • When her brave Sons those very Traitors bring,
  • Dragg’d from the Arms of their deluded KING,
  • To Public JUSTICE,—see the Villains come,
  • ’Midst JOYFUL MILLIONS, trembling at their Doom.
  • Let Britons try this Justice to obtain,
  • Nor longer hear the Nation sue in vain.
  • Grasp not at Scepters, let not Lust of sway,
  • Perswade thee Prince, the Laws to disobey,
  • The LAWS I say, from whence our Monarchs SPRING,
  • The sacred Laws, Britannia’s GREATER KING;
  • We owe no Faith to Brunswick’s empty Name,
  • Nor any Monarch can obedience claim,
  • Who ceases sacred Freedom to maintain,
  • And dares attempt unaw’d by LAWS to reign,
  • Not any King can force us to OBEY,
  • Who dares from Britain’s sacred Laws to stray.
  • Curst be the Man, whom Danger can perswade,
  • To sell his RIGHT, and dares a DESPOT Aid;
  • Curst be the Man, unworthy of the Light,
  • Who aids a Monarch, ’gainst his Countrys Right;
  • Edition: current; Page: [258]
  • Curst be the Man who draws or dares to draw,
  • His Trait’rous SWORD against the British LAW.
  • What Scenes of Woe, beyond the Atlantick lie,
  • By GEORGE the THIRD, whole Nations doom’d to die,
  • Can Heavens just God, his Vengeance long restrain,
  • Or let his aweful Thunder sleep in Vain;
  • When Crimes like these, with proud Defiance look,
  • And dare the Arm Almighty to the Stroke;
  • A Moment Prince, their Magnitude survey,
  • And blush to own them in the Face of Day;
  • Thy Subjects BLOOD by thy Direction SPILT,
  • In vain on Gage’s head transfer the Guilt;
  • The Deed was acted by the Sovereign’s Hand,
  • The Sword was pointed by the King’s Command;
  • THINE was the dire Design, ’twas THINE alone,
  • Years of Contrition must the crime attone;
  • Nor can your guilty Soul expect Relief,
  • But from a long Sincerity of Grief;
  • To Lust of Arbitrary sway inclin’d,
  • That cursed Poison, to a Prince’s Mind,
  • In Paths of Error, daily dost thou rove,
  • And loose thy great Defence, thy Peoples Love;
  • Ill counsel’d, vanquish’d, fugitive, disgrac’d,
  • Thou hence shalt mourn the British Strength defac’d,
  • Perhaps the King diminish’d, and the Crown,
  • With lessen’d Rays, descending to thy Son;
  • Shalt see the Wreaths thy Grandsire knew to get,
  • By active Toil, and Military Sweat,
  • Pining, incline their sickly Leaves and shed
  • Their falling Honours from their giddy Head;
  • By Arms or Prayer, unable to asswage
  • Domestic Horror, and intestine Rage,
  • Shalt from the Victor, and the Vanquish’d fear,
  • From Britain’s Arrow, and North Am’rick’s Spear.
  • Edition: current; Page: [259]
  • May gracious Heaven avert this Scene of Woe,
  • Nor thou, O! Prince, these various Evils know;
  • If yielding to an injur’d Nations Prayer,
  • You call your Cut-throats back, and bid them spare;
  • If wrong’d America can pity claim,
  • As you again assume a Fathers Name;
  • Your People’s Love, your Remnant Life shall crown,
  • And be the firm Supporter of your Throne,
  • Dire slavery Clank no more her horrid Chain
  • But God-like Liberty smile o’er your Reign,
  • Wars hateful Fiend, besmeard with human BLOOD,
  • Start back, and cross again the Stygean Flood;
  • You then distinguish’d, in the bright Rolls of Fame,
  • Shalt stand; and Millions bless a GEORGE’S Name.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [260] Edition: current; Page: [261]


[Price Two Pence Half-penny.

  • Projicit Ampullas.
  • Hor.1
  • On Souls, of Slav’ry more than Death afraid,
  • Gage wastes his Pardons and his Gasconnade.

GENERAL GAGE’S Proclamation2 lies before me, tho’ it is not a Subject for Criticism, yet it deserves Notice, we may overlook the Style, but must detest the Doctrine; with what Judgment the General may Command, with what Spirit he may Fight, with what Prudence he may Retreat, is yet unknown; but if his Conduct in the Edition: current; Page: [262] Field is equal to his Composition in the Closet, the Success of his Majesty’s Arms must be owing more to Fate than Judgment. This murderous Proclamation opens with great Solemnity, bold Assertions, and notorious Falsehoods, it proceeds with the presevering Spirit of the Times; but alas! its imperious Offers of Clemency, and its conceited Menaces, are vain alike. The one will make no Converts for Want of Confidence; and the other can make no Cowards for Want of Power, to subjugate America entirely by Means of our Fleet and standing Army, is impossible, the Thought only proves, that Administration is as weak as it is wicked, should they be determined, like their misguided Master, to persevere, they will, e’er long, find it impracticable either to go forward, or to retreat, they will (let them mark the Words of an unknown Writer) oblige the PEOPLE, throughout the Empire of Great Britain, to take the Power again into their own Hands, even Anarchy is preferable to DESPOTISM, especially while the Government is in the Hands of Fools, Madmen, Knaves and Tyrants; hard Usage justifies hard Names:—Let us now proceed to this alluring Proclamation; this flimsy, political Trap for antiquated Roman Virtue.

The General thought fit to arraign the Conduct of the Americans as Incendiaries and TRAITORS against the Constitutional Authority of the State; if the Word Incendiary has any Meaning in the English Language, it can only be applied with Propriety to One who is the first Kindler of Commotions in a State; according to our Constitution, the very Head that wears the CROWN may be an Incendiary by encouraging a FACTION, which may as well originate in the Court, as in the Cottage, if the KING and his Parliament, devoted to a vile Administration, combine to persevere in carrying any one Point against the Constitution, they are from that Moment, a Faction, (Incendiaries) and not a Government; they are TRAITORS, TRAITORS to the PEOPLE. Let me now ask, whether FACTION first took rise in America, or the Mother Country? Edition: current; Page: [263] In that Spot (wherever it may be) we must look for these INCENDIARIES and TRAITORS, I have put the Question fairly; it is simple, plain, and determinative,—I pause for a Reply,—not from the Mouth of a haughty Pensioner, a Scotch Placeman, or a fawning Courtier; but by the Decision of a true Constitutionalist, I am willing to abide; in the Interim, I shall declare my own Opinion. That the Mother Country, represented as she is, by a corrupt Majority, first formed a Faction herself, against the Laws and Liberties of AMERICA; nay, she has done more; she has artfully formed even a Religious Faction (the worst of all others) upon that great Continent; Her Government has of late been administered upon such mistaken, narrow, rotten Principles, that she did not think herself secure, till she had established POPERY by Act of Parliament at Quebec, by Way of fomenting Dissentions and Enmity in those Dominions she would enslave; or Administration knew and feared the Principles of the People upon that Continent, they had read that their Ancesters were Puritans, and no Friends to TYRANNY or POPERY; they knew their Designs, and planted Papists in their Rear, to keep their REBELLIOUS SUBJECTS (as they call them) between two Fires, and to deter them from taking refuge in the back Settlements; but they have Numbers and Virtue sufficient to enable them to keep, or at least to recover their Ground. Thus have a corrupt Majority, (falsely called the Great Council of the Nation) themselves departed, and encouraged Government to depart, in this as well as numberless other Instances, from the Line of Right laid down at the Revolution; a Period but little reverenced by our State-pilots, BUTE and MANSFIELD, these two Men, with their Lacqueys in and out of Parliament, are the real and only INCENDIARIES of America. The wretched Americans (unjustly branded by every Hireling with the Name of TRAITORS) are only busied, and justly busied, in extinguishing those Flames, which such a Government, (if it deserves the Name of one) has kindled; whether the Americans are Traitors, or unhappy Subjects making a lawful Resistance to repeated Tyrannies, must be determined, not by Hirelings, who assassinate for Pay, but by those who pay them with Reluctance by the collective Body of the People, in whom all Power virtually resides, from whom it originates and to whom it must, perhaps, shortly dissolve again. What Edition: current; Page: [264] the General calls Treason this collective Body (an awful Tribunal) will pronounce Constitutional Resistance.

The Americans are next accused of a fatal Progression of Crimes against the Constitutional Authority of the State.—By the Term Constitutional, if the General means an Authority constitutionally exercised, I deny his Assertion; it is as little founded on Truth, as our Ministerial Measures are upon sound Policy, Justice, and Humanity; when the Principles of the Constitution are abandoned (as they have lately been) the State may proceed authoritively, or rather despotically, but it cannot be said to act constitutionally—That the Americans avow REBELLION, I deny likewise, that they avow RESISTANCE (as their brave Ancestors once did, and as all true Revolutionists will do) every Briton, as an Enemy to Slavery, must Rejoice.

For the Patience and Lenity of the King’s (in Truth of Lord Bute’s and Lord Mansfield’s) Government I appeal to FACTS. Those, who are Masters of the Disputes between England and America, and stand unbiased by Corruption, will pass an impartial Judgement between the Oppressors and Oppressed; we doubt not but the Sovereign’s Patience is equal to his other God-like Attributes; but we know that the Patience of America has been severely tried, among other Invasions, she has been stripped of the most valuable Privilege, the Birthright of a British Subject, Trial by Juries. In many other Instances Government has attempted to enslave them; and shall the Aggressors presume to boast thus of their Patience and Lenity? at what Time, in what Particulars, were they exerted? were the humble Supplications and Remonstrances of America received by either, and by which of the three great Estates of this Kingdom? If so, a Norton, and Apsley, or some Ministerial Parricide, can inform us; but if they were (and they really were) rejected with Contempt by ALL, what Pretence, what Effrontry have the Tools and Sycophants of Power, to insult the Understandings of Mankind with SOUNDS? What HOPES (for such the General talks of) could America ever entertain of such an Administration, such a Parliament, and such a Sovereign? She has, (alas!) been driven to Despair, by all; nay, her Supplications have been finally answered by those divine effects of Patience and LenityFamine and Edition: current; Page: [265] the Sword. Thus are those who are entrusted (as the General says) with supreme Rule; manifested to all the World, that they bare not the Sword in vain. Could George the Third, that Mirror of Perseverance, that Idol of an abandoned Ministry, present the Sword of Justice, like the old Heathen Emperor, to the People, and bid them use it for Him, or against Him, according to his Deserts? if he could, he then bears not the Sword in vain, but in Defiance of Heaven and Earth; in Defiance of all Laws, Human and Divine; nor can he bear it long.

But the most sacred Rights of the Crown, and People of Great Britain (says the General) have been infringed—It is a most audacious Piece of Military Insolence; after the late Act of Tyranny assented to by the Steady Sovereign, to join the Names of Crown and People together, as if their Views and Interests were still (as in Truth they ought to be) the same. Blind to its own Interest, to its Honour, to its Establishment, to its sacred Engagements, at the Altar, has the Crown (whose sole Aim is plainly Despotic Power) consulted the Interest of the People, in its Disputes with America? the Rights of the Crown and People were stipulated anew, at the Revolution; But has the Crown kept its Compact, with the People of America? if not, by whom have the Rights of the People been infringed?—As to the Rights of the Crown as stipulated at the Revolution, they are well known, and have been religiously submitted to both at home and abroad, even in rebellious America, but when it begins to stretch out the Arm of Usurpation, it is Time that its Despotic Sinews should be shrunk.

That the Americans have been guilty (and bravely guilty) of Premeditation and Conspiracy, is most true. They have been provoked to Action, and they were too wise to act without thinking. They have most virtuously conspired against Tyrants, and disdain to wear the Chains of the most pious King, the wisest Administration, and most incorrupt Parliament that Great Britain ever knew.—For these Demerits the Fullness of Chastisement is threatend. But suppose the Chastisers should be Chastised? I have always understood that true Courage was ever accompanied by the greatest Modesty. History is full of these Examples, But our Ministry (like their Sandwich and their Denbigh) have idly thought that America Edition: current; Page: [266] may be subdued by Gasconnade. Such corrupt Wretches are Strangers to the great Effects of Virtue. Sad Experience will inform them soon that all human Souls are not as abject as their own.

The Americans are next accused of an unnatural Revolt. If by this Expression is meant a Revolt against their natural Allegiance; I answer, that when Protection is first unjustly withdrawn on the Sovereigns Part, all Allegiance ceases on the Subject’s. The Subject must then recur to the Rights of Nature; Resistance may ensue but no Revolt; for the Sovereign, by breaking his Compact has set the Subject free. A Politician would reason thus; but a Soldier has no Idea of any Mode of Government but by the Sword.—We are then told that our Colonists dared not trust their Cause to the impartial Judgment of the Public, or even to the dispassionate Reflection of their Followers.—But with what Truth? Were not the general Congresses throughout the Continent of America so many open Appeals to the Judgment of an impartial Public? were not the flagitious Prints, the popular Harrangues, the Declamations from the Pulpits (which the General complains of) so many Incitements to the cool, dispassionate Reflection of their Followers? indeed, General, you should always reason Sword in Hand.—The Pen is not your Fort.—You are lost upon Paper, and must at last submit to be vanquished in the Field. PUTNAM is in earnest.3

The Poor Americans are charged in the next Place with a Suppression of Truth.—with obstructing every Appeal to the real Interest of the People; with the grossest Forgeries, Calumnies, and Absurdities—To say that the Americans have been guilty of suppressing Truth, forging Falshoods, venting Calumnies and imposing Absudities, upon their Party, is but a kind of petulant Recrimination; these dishonourable Proceedings (if true) are but the common Stratagems of War, they are not peculiar to one Side only—The King’s Party has practised them; all the insidious Edition: current; Page: [267] Spies of Government have practised them; General Carlton,4 has practiced them most basely; you yourself, General Gage, have practised them as dishonourably, but after all this malicious, splenictic Recrimination, a Proof of Treason and Rebellion against these injured People? In Spite of all this foul Language, the World will think that there is as much Veracity, Virtue, Candour, Honour, and true Courage on the Part of Freemen who defend, as on the Part of Tyrants who invade their Liberties.—I now wish to be informed of these Appeals which have been made (if the General says true) to the real Interest of America.

Through what Channels have they passed? Have either of the three great Estates of this Kingdom, or has the Minister, or even a single Tool or Lacquey, of Administration, has a North, a Sandwich, or a Denbigh, once condescended to advise, admonish, or expostulate, with America? Has the Secretary of State for that Department ever had Orders to write in such a Strain? Have not all Lord Butes servile Clan, endeavoured, on the contrary, to carry every Thing with a high Hand, and a menacing audacious Front? Have they not shut their Eyes, Ears, and Hearts, against every humble Approach, every filial Intercession of America? These insolent Invaders of Royal Charters, human Rights, and established Laws, have been too much flashed with the Hopes of Conquest to wish cordially for a Reconciliation with America. They have industriously stopped up every opening towards it. The Mouths of our Patriots and our Citizens have been stopped by corrupt Votes, and Majestic Insults; as to the Proposal made by Lord North in his House of Commons, it was calculated for the Contempt it met with. His Lordship was not quite Fool enough to think it could take Place. By whom, then, has any Appeal to the real Interest of America been made by those who would exterminate the People?

The Prostitution of the Press makes the next Item in the Generals Catalogue of Complaints; If the American Press has been prostituted, I pray Edition: current; Page: [268] that Doctor Johnson may be called upon to declare, upon the Honour of a Court-Pensioner, how gloriously the English Press has been employed in the Cause of Truth by his Brother Garreteers; even the Eloquence of the Laity and Clergy has been exerted (says the General) to excite and justify Devastation and Massacree.—Can a Soldier, who should be a Man of Honour, assert so gross a Falshood? It is notorious that no one popular Harrangue (as the General calls them) has been made in America, with any other View than that of animating their gallant Countrymen to a just Defence of their Liberties, Properties, and Lives; the noblest Purpose of which the distinguished Gift of Speech can serve. That the brave and virtuous Americans have animated each other in Support of their National Rights, will be recorded in History to their immortal Honour; that our perfidious Government has armed the Papists, whom they patronize at Quebec, with a View of destroying their Protestant Subjects, is a Circumstance which will make a Figure of a different Cast in History; and will most assuredly bring the Advisers of that Measure to an ignominious Death, in Spite of the standing Army, employed and paid at present, for no other purpose than that of protecting TYRANTS; whether popular Harrangues made it one Case, or Arms supplied in the other, is most Characteristic of National Honour and Virtue, may easily be determined.—And to this the base, the cowardly, the traiterous Design of Government (after all their Parade and Military Bluster) of surrendering Canada to the French, a vast Province acquired last War, at the Expence of so much Blood and Treasure. This pusilanimous Thought has been suggested to gratify a despairing TYRANT.

I now accompany the General to the Account he gives of the Action of the Nineteenth of April last, respecting an Attack upon the KING’s Troops from behind Walls, and lurking Holes.—Be it so; yet, who can believe that the KING’s Troops should have been unprepared for Ambuscade, or any Acts of hostile Frenzy, as the General calls it? Have not the Americans been driven to this Frenzy? Is it not common for an Enemy to take every Advantage? Is it not uncommon, nay, impossible, that Troops, charged with Vengeance, should be unprepared to take it? They could not be unprepared for taking it, if they were armed; nor would they decline taking it, if they were Scotchmen: Their not taking it, therefore, must Edition: current; Page: [269] be owing, either to a Want of Spirit, a Want of Conduct, or a Want of Power. Since that Period (of the Nineteenth of April) says the General, the Rebels have derived Confidence from Impunity.—Is it a Matter of Merit, then, with a mercinary Soldiery, that they did not execute what they were unable to effect? This is talking like a Driveler General! But these Rebels, these Traiterous Revolutionists in America, have dared to fire upon the KINGs Ships and Subjects—Granted—but have not these Ships invaded them, have not these Subjects (why did you not say, Soldiers and Marines) threatned their Destruction? Is the Doctrine of passive Obedience, and Non-Resistance to the Divine Will of TYRANTS, to be observed by the insulted and enslaved Americans, till they felt their Sovereign’s Bayonets in their Bosoms?—These Rebels have proceeded even further; they have affected (says our General) to hold the KING’s Army besieged—Have they? May Heaven prosper such a glorious Piece of Affectation! Every Constitutionalist throughout the British Empire, hopes they will not only affect it, but effect it: Every true-born Briton longs to see the final Triumph of America marked as an Epocha in the future Annals of his Country; nor would their Joy be checked by the Appearance of another blessed Martyrdom in the Calendar. Tyranny and Martyrdom, like Representation and Taxation, should go together.

The Charge of Invasion upon private Property, and a Wantonness of Cruelty, is not only indecent, but imprudent, from that Mouth which commands the KING’s Banditti in America, who have so daringly themselves invaded the Liberties, the Properties, the Laws and Lives of free People, with the Sword; merely, because they claim, and will maintain, the Rights of Englishmen.

As to the Actions of the Nineteenth of April last, which so often haunt the Generals Mind, they ought to stand for ever recorded in the Calendar, to the eternal Honour of America, who that Day not only totally disappointed, but bravely resisted, no inconsiderable Party of the KING’s military Assassins. If any Improprieties were committed on that Nineteenth of April by the American Troops, which cannot easily be pardoned by so consummate a Soldier as General Gage; yet, their gallant Behaviour on the Seventeenth of June following must surely Edition: current; Page: [270] have deserved his Admiration. They did not fire then from behind Walls and lurking Holes, but bravely faced, attacked, and defeated, the TYRANT’s Forces. This appears sufficiently, even from the Letter which has been artfully imposed on the Public for General Gages genuine Account of that Action; but let the Minister shew forth the Generals real Letter, if he dares. His Master lost his Colour when he read it; and I verily believe that even Lord North (the ostensible Minister) is not himself entrusted with the true Contents of it. His Lordship is but the Drudge. He has the Name without the Confidence of a Minister; and meanly submits to be responsible for Iniquities not his own. The real genuine Letter (so dreadful are its Tidings) is a Secret to all but the TYRANT, and his Gemini, the Castor, and Pollux,5 of his Cabinet, Bute and Mansfield,—They dare not publish it.

I am now come to the last Effort within the Bounds of the Generals Duty, to spare the Effusion of Blood, which he is strictly charged to shed without Mercy or Reluctance. The General, according to his Orders, most dutifully dispatched his blustering Colonel Smith to commence the intended Carnage. This Bully failed; yet Blood was unnaturally and unjustifiably drawn by our hireling Cut Throats at Concord; and then the General, in Commiseration of the Calamities which his murderous Army had occasioned, most humanely offers, two Months afterwards (when he found himself unequal to the Task of Conquest) his Majesty’s most gracious Pardon to these unhappy Sufferers. Your treacherous Offer is disdained—away with it!—and massacre (if you can) but without an Insult the bravest Men in the British Empire. Did not the Ancestors of these brave Spirits spurn the insiduous Proclamation of that Tyrant Charles, and shall their Sons fall a Prey to the delusive Orders of a weaker TYRANT, and a more consummate Hypocrite?—Will not the gallant Adams, and the meritorious Hancock fall with their Country, if it is Edition: current; Page: [271] her fate to fall?6 Or, should they be unfortunately taken Prisoners, will they not cast an indignant Smile upon the Wretch, who should affect to pardon them, after he had enslaved their Country? The proclaiming all America (except the KING’s Roman Catholic Subjects, and good Allies at Quebec) TRAITORS, is but a contemptible Echo of that Act of Parliament which declared them so long since, for consulting and preparing, only against an intended Massacree by Sword and Famine.—America despises your Threats, your Clemency, and all naval and military Terror and Parade, thou impotent TYRANT! This General concludes his Gasconnade with a most notorious Falshood, by asserting that the present unnatural Rebellion of the Americans (as he calls it) has stopped the Administration of Justice in that Country—For Shame, For Shame! General; a Soldier! and guilty of a Lye!—Your Master knows, you know, the whole World knows, that the rotten Parliament of this Nation not only stopped the Course, but extinguished every Benefit of the Common Law (the Subjects great Inheritance) when they dared take away the Privilege of Juries. The Design was base, atrocious, glaring, perfidious, and tyrannical; but why does this unthinking Tool of military Power call the Royal Charter of the Province to his Aid; that Charter, which his Master and his Parliamentary Junto has so grossly violated? Is that Charter unfavourable to Freedom, and can it now serve the Cause of Slavery? Has it hitherto been slighted, and is it now made Use of to betray the People for whose Edition: current; Page: [272] Protection it was granted? Has it been so often disallowed, with an indignant Sneer, when America petitioned for Redress, and is it now set up against her by the shallow Tools of Power, when she is defending those Rights and Liberties which it gives her? Is this Royal Charter now called in Aid of despotic Measures, through Weakness, Insolence, or Inadvertency? Why, General, General! Your haughty, unrelenting Master, tramples on the Royal Charters of his wiser Predecessors. I tell thee, Homicide, that the Faith of KINGS is now no more. Our very Laws must shortly truckle to the Sword. The Law Martial, which you have just proclaimed (and of which you may shortly taste yourself) will, if you succeed in America, be at length the only Law of England. Mansfield is an Advocate for summary Proceedings. The Die is cast in the Great Divan (the wise Council of this Nation) and those who would rise again to the State and Liberties of Englishmen, must rise through BLOOD. The Parricides of this Constitution, General, are to be found in England, not in America; unless among the established Papists at Quebec; nor can Happiness, Peace, Liberty, and Law, be now restored (unless Providence miraculously intervenes) but by another Revolution.


Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [273]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

To the KING.

EFORE the Contents of this Paper is communicated to your Majesty, the Writer of it will have taken an everlasting Farewell of your Kingdom, and his own Native, and once beloved Country. He will consider himself a Citizen of the whole World; who has been defrauded of his Fortune, by a Combination of your Majesty’s wicked and corrupt Judges, and supported therein, by your Majesty’s own, Domestic Servants and Friends.

He will consider himself, (and so Sir will all your Majesty’s honest Subjects) as a Man grown Old in your Service, driven from your Dominions, with Eight Children in his Train, to seek his own Subsistance, and their Fortune, at an Age that he might reasonably have expected to have been in Possession of a comfortable Support, as a Reward for his long and faithful Services; instead of which, his own private Property has been wrested from him, by a most unheard-of Proceeding, in a House, called the House of Lords; but whose shameful Conduct to him, justifies his calling it a Den of Thieves; and that too, of the worst Sort; because the Robbery Edition: current; Page: [274] they committed, was done under the Sanction of the Law; though he really fell a Sacrifice to the wretched Politics of your Ministers, and to the Personal Pique, of that worst of Men, Lord Mansfield.—He will consider himself as a Man, owing Allegiance to no Prince upon Earth, till he has found one, who will afford him an Assylum, for himself, and his large Family; and who will protect his Person, and maintain his Property, by the established Laws of his Country.

Sir, I have served in the Armies of your Majesty, and your Royal Grandfather, from the Age of Fifteen, to Fifty. I have served in almost every Part of the Globe, and have spilt some of my Blood in severe Services; and now Sir, before I quit my Native Country, I am determined to stand forth, with that Boldness which Truth inspires, and Injuries provoke, to tell your Majesty some alarming and wholesome Truths;—Truths, which the Men now about your Person, durst not tell you, and which your real Friends cannot. It is needless to inform your Majesty of the scandalous Behaviour of your present Chancellor, Lord Apsley, in the House of Lords; on the 16th Day of February last; but it seems Necessary, to remind your Majesty of the Virtues of his Predecessors.—I need not repeat all the shamefull Misdoings of the former, because I know your Majesty has seen the VII and X Number of this PAPER; and if your Majesty condescended to read the Petition, I had the Honour to deliver into your Hand, by the favourable Assistance of the Earl of Oxford,1 you are equally as well informed with my unhappy and singular Situation.

But neither the Injustice which has been done me in the House of Lords; my long and faithful Services; my large Family; nor the humble Petition of a Man who has a eight Children, (the eldest of whom is the presumptive Heir to an ancient Barony) has proved sufficient to induce your Majesty to attend to my humble Prayer.

Permit me, Sir, to remind your Majesty, that it is not for your Sake only, but for the Sake of your People, that you are appointed their Chief Magistrate; for surely, Sir, if you had considered this, you would not have Edition: current; Page: [275] removed from the Highest, and most important Seat of Justice, a virtuous and an able Man, whose equitable Decisions, gave even the vanquished Suitor Satisfaction; and have placed in his stead, a Man, whose Name I am ashamed should blot this Paper.

Does your Majesty know, that the Chancellor of this Country decides, in the Course of a few Years, half the Property in your Kingdom?—You certainly do:—and does your Majesty believe, that your people will be satisfied, now they know that your present Chancellor has neither Abilities to discern, nor Integrity to decide, honestly, even when the Law is pointed out to him.

All the World acknowledge the Abilities of Lord Camden as fully as they esteem him for his Integrity.—He is confessedly the first and ablest Lawyer in Your Majesty’s Kingdom, and allowed by all Parties to be an honest Man.

Why then, Sir, at a Time his eminent Abilities were so essentially necessary in your private Councils, was he dismissed from his high Office?—I, Sir, above all Men, have a Right to ask your Majesty this Question; because his Dismission has been my Ruin; and take Care, least his Successor, and his Abettors, do not ruin a greater Man.

Is the Property of your Majesty’s Subjects to be sacrified to his Vanity or Support?—Must his Decrees be affirmed right or wrong? Does not your Majesty hear of the constant Appeals from his Decisions? and does your Majesty think the Confirmation of them by Lord Denbigh, and your Bedchamber Lords, will satisfy the injured and plundered Appellants? who, instead of gaining their Property, are ruined by Expence, and rendered wretched by unnecessary Delays. Surely, Sir, if not for their Sakes, you will instantly for your own, put the Seals into the Hands of an able Man.—You cannot put them into weaker, or more dishonest Hands.

Is the Man, who took the Advantage of Mr. Hoares Generosity to his necessitous Brother, by an Act which a Petty-fogging Attorney would have blushed at, a fit Person to administer the Law, even if he knew it, to the Subjects of Britain?—Forbid it Justice;—forbid it Truth:—I tell you plainly, Sir, the Nation will not bear it. Your Majesty knows, that the Edition: current; Page: [276] Seals were given to Lord Apsley, because no other Man but his Lordship would accept them on Lord Mansfields Terms; who knew him to be a vain, empty Creature, who would implicitly obey his Mandates.

What must your Majesty’s Subjects think of a Man, who said in the House of Lords;—“My. Lords, I pride myself in asking, and obtaining, the Private Opinions of my Brother Judges:” Yet his priding Lordship stood silent, and looked sullen, when Lord Pawlet moved the House to have the Public Opinion of all his Brother Judges.”

And when his infamous Abettors (your Majesty’s Bedchamber Lords) had over-ruled that honest Motion, what did he do? stood forth and read a Private Letter obtained from Sir William De Grey, for the wicked Purpose, and imposed that Man’s pretended Opinion, in order to sustain Lord Mansfield’s and his own, though he was previously told by Lord Camden, “That it was contrary to Law to read it, and that, if it had been otherwise, the Opinion of a Man, not a Judge in that Court, ought not to weigh, even as a Wafer in the Scale.—Nor, said his Lordship, should such an Opinion be even whispered in this House.”

I appeal, Sir, to your Majesty’s Justice, and to the good Sense and Candour of all your Subjects, whether such Proceedings as those, had any Resemblance of the benign Face of Equity or Justice. No, sir, every Bystander saw, with Concern and Pity; and many of the more feeling Part, with Astonishment and Horror. The Day my Ruin was effected, the Contest was not for Justice to either Party; but whether your Majesty’s present Chancellor, and his wicked Abetters, could bully down and defeat the irresistable Arguments, and good Sense of that good Man, Lord Camden.

This, Sir, is the Sense of the whole Nation, and it is NOW, their Misfortune, more than mine. This, Sir, is a Truth, told you by an unfortunate Man, who is no longer your Servant, nor your Subject, nor any longer interested in the Welfare of a Kingdom, which has treated him with such repeated Acts of Injustice, for he has long before this, been a Mark to be shot at.* He has asked Alms of your Majesty since this fatal Blow; but his Edition: current; Page: [277] Prayer has been made to your Majesty without Effect! perhaps without Pity.

Do not therefore Sir, suffer it to be said, that void of a due Sense of the Duty I owed to your Majesty, or a natural Love to my native Country, that I forsook both, from interested Views, or Want of honest Principles: No, Sir, I forsook my Country, like an honest, but injured Man, owing no one any Thing; and having a large, and just Demand upon it.—I have forsook it, Sir, in the 56th Year of my Age, and the 35th of my faithful Services, to seek an honest Subsistance, for myself, and my large Family, because the little Pittance I have left, is insufficient to maintain them; and because my legal Property, has been violently wrested from my Hands, by your Majesty’s three first Law Officers.

Oh, Britain! how is thy Glory faded! Art thou the Nation, so lately renowned through the World; for its Valour in War; its Wisdom in Council; and its equitable Distribution of Justice!—Thy Inhabitants now behold, with Astonishment and Horror, Lord Denbigh become the chief Prop to the first Law Officer; Lord Sandwich, to the Archibshop of Canterbury; and Lord Le Despencer to the Propagaters of the Christian Religion! And yet, strange to think, all these Things are come to pass, during the Reign of a Religious King, and the best of Princes.

The Day, Sir, my ruinous Cause came on before the House of Lords, a Report was as artfully, as wickedly, propagated at St. Jamess, “That Lord Camden was going down to the House of Lords, to commit Hostilities against your Majesty’s Chancellor.”—Hostilities was the Parole; it was whispered about till it was thought necessary to send some Household Troops down, to sustain Lord Camden’s wicked Attack upon Justice. Lord Denbigh was the Ruffian, to whom the Command was given; and he executed his Business with such Alacrity, that he soon drove Lord Pawlet from his Post; Lord Camden sustained the Attack singly, for an Hour and twenty Minutes, but was at length, obliged to give Way to Numbers.—Thus, Sir, a complete Victory was obtained over Lord Camden’s wicked Intentions; and My Ruin was accomplished. I confess, Sir, I fled from the Field of Battle, during the warmest Part of the Conflict; but it was the first Time, and I was deeply wounded. I thank god, however, I Edition: current; Page: [278] left Lord Camden, fighting singly on my Side.—He fought Sir, valiantly, and fell nobly; for he fell with vanquished Justice by his Side; fighting for the Honour of his Country, and a friendless Stranger: His Honour, Sir, and his Pity, has been my Support. I say his Pity; for though I am unfortunately an utter Stranger to that great and good Man; I know he has almost dropped a Tear in Pity to my Misfortunes; and I have seen, under his own Hand, a Letter, in which are these Words:

“I am glad I did not know the distressed Situation of Mr. Thickness, before his Cause came on; I am sorry to be acquainted with it now, because my Heart bleeds for him, and I can give him no Relief. His Case would have been hard, had the Law been against him. &c. &c.”

These, Sir, are the Sentiments of your Majesty’s late Lord Chancellor; and as your Majesty knows, what Sentiments the whole Nation entertain of your present; remove him, I beseech you, from that once chaste Seat he has so infamously defiled, and no longer disgrace your own Dignity, nor risque your Subjects Property, to the Controul of so contemptible a Person; for a Knave in that Station, would be more acceptable to your People, than a Fool; and even Lord Mansfield is much more fitting for that Employment, than Lord Apsley; but if you wish to recover the Affection of your People, restore Lord Camden to a Seat he will fill with so much Honour to your Majesty, and so much Satisfaction to the whole Nation.—I am sure the Day is not very remote when you must do it; and I hope you will spare yourself that Mortificaton, and do it now, because it ought to be done.—I know not how to subscribe myself, for I know not who, or what I am; but this I can with Truth say, that I was your Majesty’s faithful Subject, and devoted Servant; but am now driven into Exile, by being plundered of my private Property, because your Majesty’s Ministers thought it better to sacrifice me to their Prejudice and Politicks, than expose the Weakness and Wickedness of your Law Officers; or to Countenance even the Laws of the Land, while they are in the Custody only of Lord Camden.

I shall conclude this Address to your Majesty with an Extract, from the Writings of the great Lord Bacon; who says, “When any of the four Pillars of Government are mainly shaken, or weakned, which are Edition: current; Page: [279] Religion,Justice,Council,—and Treasure.Men had Need to Pray for fair Weather.”—And speaking of Sedition, his Lordship says, “The Matter of Seditions is of two Kinds:—Much Poverty, and much Discontent. Lucan noteth well the State of Rome before the Civil War.

Hinc usura vorax, avidumque in tempore foenus.

Hinc concussa fides, & Multis utile Bellum.

“This same Multis utile Bellum, is an assured, and infallible Sign of a State disposed to Seditions and Troubles; and if the Poverty, and broken Estates of the better, be joined with Necessity in the mean People, the Danger is imminent and great; but the main Causes of Seditions are, he says, Innovations in Religion,Taxes,—Alteration of Laws and Customs, breaking of Privileges, general Oppression, and Advancement of unworthy Persons, &c.”2

Now, if any of that great Man’s Remarks are worthy of your Majesty’s Royal Attention, it behoves you to obtain better Information, than Lord Denbigh can, or Lord Mansfield will give you. I shall conclude this Address to your Majesty, in beseeching you to consider, what my Sentiments and Sensations were, while I stood a full Hour at your Closet Door, in Order to throw myself on my Knees, at your Feet, to ask a bare Support for myself, and for my Family, when I saw that painful Hour, chiefly employed by your Majesty, in familiar and gracious Conversation with a Man, who has been on his Knees to call down Destruction on your Family; and indeed, upon them, for even a Prostitution of a more unnatural Crime. However Sir, the Sun shall not go down upon my Anger, and may it long shine upon your Majesty, and all your real Friends.

N. B. A Citizen of London, of the Drybutter Family (with whom he had been closely connected) left him a Legacy of Ten Thousand Pounds, and Edition: current; Page: [280] that it was, which first raised this Man from Obscurity, to be a Scourge to this Country.

A CARD to LORD———.

Mr. T———presents his Compliments to Lord———;, and desires his Lordship to consider, that his voluntary Offer to recommend him to the King’s Favor, when he had no such Design, was Cruelty in the first Degree.—Has his Lordship forgot, that Sir Richard Lytleton, and Mr. Colleton,3 were Mr. T———’s Acquaintance and Friends, as well as his Lordships? and does his Lordship think, that a certain singular Transaction before he was married to Miss———died with those two Gentlemen?—Surely his Lordship does think so, or he would not have been so wantonizing cruel.

asterisks Shortly will be published, a Letter to Lord———.

On Wednesday the 9th of August, instant, at Ten o’Clock in the Forenoon, was published, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, Price Twopence Halfpenny,

ACRISIS Extraordinary,

Proving, unanswerably, that the KING supports a Faction against the Laws and Constitution, that the AMERICANS are not REBELS, and that those who would rise to the State and Liberties of ENGLISHMEN, must rise thro’ BLOOD.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [281]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two-pence Half-penny.

To the KING.

  • For Seas of BLOOD which your mad Fury shed,
  • God soon will hurl his Veng’ance on your Head;
  • Struck as when SATAN from his Glory fell,
  • Your CONSCIENCE must be one continu’d Hell.

WHILST News-paper Scribblers, in the PAY of your Ministers, are varnishing over the Actions of a Nero, or a Dioclesian,1 and others who pretend to be Friends to the natural Edition: current; Page: [282] Rights of Mankind, and the Constitution, disguise their real Sentiments, or Write more like effeminate Distards of the East, than Englishmen, and the Descendents of Britons, against your MINIONS ONLY.—The Authors of the CRISIS will not be afraid to expose TREASON and PERJURY, though covered with the Robes of Royalty; they are determined, at every Hazard, to speak the boldest and most galling Truths, although they should offend the Ears, strike deep into the Heart, or excite the Rage of the most despotic Tyrant.

One Part of your Subjects, that is, your Ministers and their Creatures, call you the BEST of KINGS; the Authors of the CRISIS, and more than Nine-tenths of your People in every Part of the British Dominions, not only think, but know you to be the worst of T——ts.

Let your Flatterers and Sycophants, who surround your Throne, point out ONE single Act you have done in the Course of a FIFTEEN Years Reign, worthy of a KING, i. e. a FATHER of your People; and the whole Nation will that Moment, make a solemn Sacrifice of their Liberties, at the Altar of DESPOTISM which you have erected: but alas! on the contrary, how many damning Proofs have we already upon Record, sufficient to stagger the Belief of Posterity, of your cruel and perverse Will, of your Tyrannical and obstinate Disposition; in a Word, of the Weakness of your Head, and the Badness of your Heart. It is not necessary for you, Sir, to be guilty of one more Act of Cruelty, you have reached the Summit of Human Greatness; you have gained the glorious Appellation, the immortal NAME of St. Georges Fields, Brentford, and America, will remain (though Stone and Marble might decay) lasting Monuments to your Memory, and will be sufficient to perpetuate your Ingratitude, your Treachery, your Hypocracy, and your Savage Cruelty, to succeeding Ages.

You may, Sir, be able to manage the Nursery, to guide the principal Wire of a Puppet Shew, (with which you often amuse yourself) to smile at Edition: current; Page: [283] little Pinchey’s Gew-gaws, at Breslaws Slight of Hand, and Automaton Figures, and to laugh at Footes Theatre;2 whilst the BLOOD of Thousands, the Widow and the Fatherless, plunged in the Depths of Misery, are calling for Vengeance of YOU and your MINIONS.

But, Sir, notwithstanding all those amiable Qualities (which might do Honour to a Hottentot) you are by no Means fit to govern one of the petty States of Germany, much less this great and powerful Kingdom.

Although the Hands of the BEST of KINGS are besmeared with HUMAN GORE.

Although the infernal Designs of your abandoned Ministers to enslave America, have been frustrated at the Expence of the Lives of many brave and virtuous Men, who preferred DEATH to SLAVERY.

Although the Futility and Impracticability of reducing the Western World by Force of Arms, to a State of abject Dependance on your WILL, a State more horrible than that of Egyptian Bondage, has been sufficiently proved.

Although you have forced more than THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND of your Subjects into a just Resistance to your Tyranny, to preserve all that is held dear by great and good Men, their Lives, Liberties, and Properties, from the cruel Invasions of an infamous Majority in both Houses of Parliament, notoriously corrupted with Bribes, Places, and Pensions, to do the dirty Work of your Court, to raise a Revenue for the avowed and ONLY Purpose of paying such Bribes, Placemen, and Pensioners, and to aid the bloody Designs of your Ministers, to carry into Execution, at the Point of the Sword, (contrary to the Sense of every Edition: current; Page: [284] independent Man in England) the most unjust and sanguinary Laws that ever disgraced a British House of Commons.

Although your Kingdom is defenceless by sending out Ships and exporting Troops to America, to massacree their Fellow Subjects, (or to be slaughtered where Glory cannot be obtained, but Dishonour and eternal Infamy must attend their Fall) and this at a Time when you are meanly crouching to France and Spain, and trembling for FEAR of their vast and powerful Armaments, ready to sail at a few Hours Notice, should these our natural Enemies invade this Kingdom, which there is but too much Reason to expect from your weak and bloody Politics; England must be destroyed, or become a tributary State to the combined Power of the House of Bourbon.

Although your People HERE are oppressed to the last Degree by enormous Taxes, to feed the Luxuries of your corrupt rotten Court, whilst Thousands of Manufacturers are out of Employ, and, with the Poor, starving for Want of Bread.

Although your Treasury, and your Exchequer is empty, your Servants five Quarters in Arrears, and your Tradesmens Bills unpaid.

Although the People of England labour under Grievances little inferior to those the Americans justly complain of, and will soon take up Arms to redress their Wrongs. I say, Sir, notwithstanding all these existing and impending Dangers, which evidently threaten a Destruction of the Empire, yet you seem determined, by obstinately denying Right to your People, and pursuing Measures big with Public Ruin, to drive your Subjects into a State of Desperation, and all the Horrors of a CIVIL WAR, as well in England as America; that you may glut your Rage and Thirst for Blood, by issuing illegal Proclamations, declaring every Man who shall defend the LAWS and the CONSTITUTION a Rebel; for WE have no Alternative left but to be REBELS or SLAVES, it being the general Opinion of Mankind, that you would rather risque your Crown, and wade through Seas of BLOOD, than drop your present Design, aided by a corrupt Senate and a profligate Ministry, to establish an absolute Sovereignty over the Nation, and Reign a merciful DESPOT on the Throne of England.

Edition: current; Page: [285]

There may, Sir, possibly be some Men, (and that there is no doubt your Ministers have made you believe) so superlatively LOYAL, that rather than not live under the blessed Tyranny of George the Third, they would give up all the glorious Privileges of ENGLISHMEN. It is possible there may be a few such Wretches, their Number, however, cannot be great, nor does it consist of any but those who are well paid for their Servility; remove them from their Places, cease to bribe, and let them no longer have an Interest in calling you the BEST of KINGS, in being loyal, and submitting to your Mandates and your Bondage, and they will the next Moment (as they do already in their Hearts) execrate and condemn you, your Impolitic, and Bloody Measures.

The Transactions, Sir, in this Kingdom, since you imbibed the Principles of the Stuarts, espoused the Interests of the Church of Rome, and pursued the persecuting Spirit of the Catholics, are so full of Wonder and Astonishment, that were the Facts not well attested, I am persuaded Posterity would not believe them.—But what is the most alarming now, and will be hardly credited hereafter, is, that so GOOD and WISE a King as George the Third, should give himself up to the Guidance of so BAD a Set of Men, as Bute, Mansfield, Jenkinson, and North, though Born a BRITON, and glorying in the Name, he should be a SCOTSMAN, though bred a Protestant; he should be a Catholic; though SWORN to preserve the Rights, Lives, and Liberties, of the People, and the Constitution of the Kingdom in Church and State, as by LAW established, he should violate that solemn Engagement made before God and Man; be the Murderer of his Subjects, the Destroyer of their Rights, Liberties, and Properties; the Subverter of the Constitution in Church and State, and the Instrument of general Ruin.

The Astonishment of our Descendents will not end here; they will be more surprized still, to find such horrid Masacres, inhuman Laws, and cruel Plans, for the Destruction of a People and Kingdom, as disgrace the present Reign, were suffered in ENGLAND, without RESISTANCE, with a Stoical cowardly Patience; nay, almost Insensibility.

Non-resistance may keep Fools and Cowards in AWE; but, Sir, what Man can be so lukewarm as even to DOUBT, when a Nation is falling, Edition: current; Page: [286] (as England now is) from the greatest Height of glory, into the most despicable Condition, that the COMMUNITY has a RIGHT to COMMAND his Services. That the Right is founded upon NECESSITY. He ought to know by the Principles of the last Revolution, that every FAITHFUL SUBJECT is bound to resist the Prince, who endeavours to ruin and enslave his People, and that he may push this Resistance to the dethronement and exclusion of his Race. It was, Sir, by an Exertion of those Principles, that YOUR FAMILY came to the Throne of these Kingdoms. The LAWS and CONSTITUTION are the general Property of the Subject—not to defend, is to relinquish; and who is there so senseless as to renounce his Share in the common Benefit, unless he hopes to profit by a new Division of the Spoil. The highest Station, Sir, and the greatest Glory that any Mortal can aspire to, is to be during the whole Course of his Life, the Support of GOOD, the controul of BAD GOVERNMENT, the protector of Virtue, the Patron of Industry, and the Guardian of PUBLIC LIBERTY. When our Rights are invaded, our Feelings ought to tell us how long we ought to submit, and at what Moment it would be Treachery not to RESIST. The present Situation of his Country and America. (Thanks to you, Sir, the best of Kings) is alarming enough to rouse the Attention of every Man, who pretends to have a Concern for the Public Welfare. Bad as it is, Sir, there is no Extremity of Distress, which, of itself ought to reduce a GREAT NATION to Despair. A Luke-Warm Conduct is always odious; in Times of National Ruin, highly CRIMINAL. We owe it to our Ancestors to preserve entire those Rights which they have delivered to our Care; and we certainly owe it to our innocent Posterity, not to suffer their DEAREST INHERITENCE to be destroyed. If we are sensible of these sacred Claims, we shall find there is an Obligation, binding upon OURSELVES, from which nothing can acquit us.—A PERSONAL INTEREST, which we cannot SURRENDER.

Every Man is apt to delight in his own Country. I am proud to confess a particular Predilection for mine, and would give ample Testimony of my Love for it, by spilling the last Drop of my BLOOD in its Defence. The Authors of the CRISIS, Sir, only think favourably of YOU, as your ACTIONS correspond with the known Laws of JUSTICE, and the Principles Edition: current; Page: [287] of the CONSTITUTION. No Man, Sir, will be be more faithful and Loyal to you than they, while they are sensible you make the Good and Prosperity of the People, your Glory; none more your Enemies, when we are convinced you do the contrary.

It would be well for you, Sir, not to plume yourself on the Security of your TITLE to the CROWN, but recollect, that as it was gained by ONE REVOLUTION, it may be lost by ANOTHER.

On Wednesday the 9th of August at Ten 0Clock in the Forenoon, was published by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet Street, Price Twopence Halfpenny.

A CRISIS Extraordinary,

Proving, unanswerably, that the KING supports a Faction against the Laws and Constitution, that the AMERICANS are not REBELS, and that those who would rise to the State and Liberties of ENGLISHMEN, must rise thro’ BLOOD.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [288] Edition: current; Page: [289]


To be continued Weekly

[Price Two-pence Half-penny


  • SHUT not the Door, good Hertford, I’am but One,
  • A single Sufferer can’t alarm the THRONE.
  • No Mayor am I, no Sword and Mace I bring;
  • No Suit prefer, to terrify a King.
  • No rude Petition in my Hand I bear;
  • I grieve in Silence, I prefer no Pray’r
  • Nor want the Mouth-piece of Recorder Eyre(1)
  • with no bent Knee I’ll worship Thrones and Stools.
  • They who repeat this Farce, are passive Fools;
  • No Lyes, on my account, shall Hertford forge;
  • I’ll wring (like Beckford,) no Reply from GEORGE;
  • Edition: current; Page: [290]
  • Let him reply above, when Heav’n demands,
  • Thousands of murder’d Subjects at his Hands,
  • Let him erect th’ impaling Stake and Wheel;
  • Then seem astonishd that his Slaves can feel,
  • I’ll force (like WILKES) no (1)Lines from Mansfields Pen,
  • Which he’s asham’d of, when he thinks agen:
  • And courts his pliant Master to disclaim
  • Mean Hertford’s Pride—e’en let him take the Blame.
  • Let Laureat Whitehead1 his Invention rack,
  • And deify a DOLT to earn his Sack;
  • Let pension’d Johnson toil, with aching Head,
  • To burnish up in Gold a Lump of Lead;
  • In Verse, or Prose, I’ll make no TYRANT vain,
  • Nor praise the Virtue of a Nero’s Reign.
  • Sooner shall Whitehead in his Butt be drown’d,
  • And Johnson be ador’d on (2)Salems Ground;
  • Sooner shall Bute renounce the Name of Scot,
  • And Jamess Claim by Mansfield be forgot;
  • Sooner from Court shall Guilt and Vice depart;
  • KING, Lords; and Commons wear an honest Heart,
  • Solomon’s Wisdom in a FOOL be known,
  • Edition: current; Page: [291]
  • And genuine TRUTH be utter’d from the Throne.
  • No Slavish Doctrines from my Pen shall spring,
  • I’ll strip no Subject to dress out a King;
  • But ev’ry Villain, pensiond, placd, or crownd,
  • Shall on my Canvas, like himself, be found.
  • Burke, Saville, Barre, in my faithful Tints,
  • Shall see how Meredith and Conway squints;2
  • Not with a Cast which Nature gave their Eye,
  • But at round Sums, which on Norths Table lie:
  • Let these but speak, no Want of Votes appears:
  • They win the Commons, and secure the Peers.
  • Charm’d by these Spells see Conways Vigour flag,
  • And frail Sir William grasp at Treasry Bag,
  • The Baronet for Wealth quits Honour’s Course;
  • The Soldier takes but a Regiment of Horse.
  • Pension’d and Plac’d these Quandam-Patriots laugh;
  • One shakes his Purse, and t’other wave’s his (1)Staff,
  • Of every hopeful Plant are these the Fruits?
  • Can North’s Breath blast Britannia’s strongest shoots?
  • Edition: current; Page: [292]
  • The fairest Virtue with Infection tinge,
  • And catch our Eagles in Corruption’s Spring?
  • Safe from North’s Lure can no firm Patriot fly?
  • Abroad, at Home, must FREEDOM crouch or die?
  • Crouch, like a patient Camel, at a Beck,
  • Till George ascends his Zenith from her Neck?
  • Or else, in sulky State, her Back bestrides,
  • Whilst Bute admires, how well his Scholar Rides?
  • How rich his Trappings! By shrewd Grenville vamp’d;
  • Supurb in (1)Rags and Sheep Skins duly stampt,
  • Permits and Cockets, in huge Holsters swag;
  • What Elephant so overwhelm’d could wag?
  • Tho’ Taxes upon Taxes load the Pad,
  • Bute adds his Weight to make the Creature mad.
  • To all her plaints affecting to be blind,
  • Th’ unfeeling Thane, trys to get up behind.
  • But finding how she Kicks and Flings for Ease,
  • Bids North unload full half an Ounce of TEAS(2)
  • North to his Charge repairs with nimble Feet,
  • But GEORGE with Turkish Firmness keeps his Seat;
  • Persists, tho’ genral Ruin shoul’d incurr,
  • And as a Test to Spirit, adds the (3)Spur.
  • Not Mars himself, not Moloch ever made
  • So grim a Show, in Human Blood arrayd
  • On ev’ry side, behind him, and before,
  • His dull Ears pierc’d with Groans, he rides in GORE;
  • Smiling he views Destruction raging round,
  • And brave Bostonians biting Freedoms Ground.
  • How is this God in Extasy dissolv’d,
  • To see ev’n Infants in Death’s Snares involv’d!
  • Edition: current; Page: [293]
  • Th’ expiring Babe cling to it’s Mothers Side,
  • To find those milky Streams which FAMINE dry’d
  • Famine let loose on ev’ry Sex and Age,
  • To sooth a TYRANT’S Impotence and Rage,
  • Himself a Father, yet wants Sense to feel,
  • And in the Suppliant sheaths his murd’rous Steel.
  • Thus are you Drawn, Great Sir, but not by (1)Dance;
  • By Royal Hands—by Prussia, Spain, and France,
  • The first to Hanover, extends his Eye,
  • Some Kings are born to fight and some to (2)CRY.
  • The other Pow’r deludes you till the Time,
  • Comes to supplant you in the Freer (3)Clime
  • The Third perceives you’re cruel, proud, and dull,
  • In Heart a Pidgeon, and in Wit a Gull;
  • She laughs to see you throw the Sov’reign by,
  • To feed through Optic Tubes your vacant Eye;
  • To see you spurn God’s Laws, on Subjects War,
  • Yet pry into those Laws which guide a Star,
  • To see you gape at Planets while they stray,
  • And take Old Saturn, for the Milky Way;
  • To think how little that poor Prince must know,
  • Who bays the Moon, when he should look below.
  • To see how Kings in privacy appear,
  • When Baubles claim the Heart, their Eye, their Ear;
  • When Wisdom’s Fruits in Royal Toyshops grow;
  • Pictures for Study plac’d, and Books for show.
  • At Kew the World admires your great Designs,
  • Where (4)Cielings glory in your Princely Lines;
  • Not Lines which speak a Genius for rude Wars,
  • Edition: current; Page: [294]
  • But such as Mimic Wheaten Straws and Stars.
  • Thro’ George’s Works what splendid Fancy roves,
  • Adorning shady Temples, and Alcoves!
  • Not less he charms amidst a Levee full;
  • So stalks among tame Sheep the surly Bull.
  • Tho’ France trips neater round the courtly Ring,
  • France can’t display such Buttons as our KING.
  • Buttons by no inferior Genius wove,
  • Or plann’d—divinely wrought—and fit for Jove.
  • Buttons, projected by Great Britain’s Sire;
  • He drew the Model, and he chose the Wire,
  • Minerva’s Self close by the Artist lurk’d,
  • And secretly inspir’d him as he work’d.
  • Let Prussia’s Hero ape the God of War;
  • We boast a greater Mars, a bolder Tar,
  • With Prussian Camps Blackheath, Hyde Park, shall vye,
  • At Portsmouth-Fights, our Neptune scorns to fly.
  • Does Sandwich, or a God, the Trident hold?
  • How British Fleets stream (like Twelfth Cakes) with Gold!
  • The Cannon’s touch’d—what Soul unchill’d by Fear,
  • This prelude to a dreadful Fight can hear!
  • What earthly Prince can stand the furious shock,
  • Without a cold Collation, and Old Hock!
  • Yet GEORGE, serenly calm, in Smoak and Blaze,
  • On Sandwich’s pale Cheek with smiles can gaze;
  • Breathes Courage into Talbot, and cheers up
  • His Bully Denbigh, with another Cup.
  • Tho’ in the Midst of Battle’s fiery Flakes,
  • No Terrors check his Royal Gust for—Cakes.
  • O happy England! did you know your Bliss,
  • When to your Sov’reign, no Toils come amiss,
  • Now, in Hyde-Park in Battle’s heat he rides;
  • To-Morrow, within Shore, a Navy guides;
  • Bids his First-Rates disdain all Thoughts of Fear,
  • Edition: current; Page: [295]
  • Nor strike—unless a Spanish Frigate’s near.
  • Since thus in hair-breadth Scapes George draws his Breath,
  • For Public Good, what Tears must wait his Death!
  • Ev’n such as He for (1)Yorke’s Destruction shed;
  • So weeps the Crocodile on Nilus bred.
  • The Crisis then shall mourn in fun’ral Verse,
  • And hang with Elegies her Patrons Hearse.
  • The Nation then usurping (2)Garter’s Place,
  • Shall in mute Scutcheons blazon forth her Case.
  • See, in just Colours, what a Piece displays
  • The State of England’s Bliss in George’s Days!
  • Here standing Force all Civil Power confounds,
  • And naked Allen’s cover’d o’er with Wounds;
  • Corruption there her unmask’d Visage shews,
  • And tries to make Elections free by Blows.
  • Balf and M’Quirk adorn Sir (3)Beauchamp’s Side,
  • Their Courage cooly view, their Laws decide;
  • Secure of Pardon ere their Work began,
  • With royal Leave, they murder all they can.
  • A Treas’ry Bribe gives their hir’d Rage an Edge,
  • And for their Pensions North becomes a Pledge.
  • A warmer Canvas shews Butes rising Sun;
  • A vicious Mother, and a Prince undone;
  • She smiles at Postures Aretino gives;
  • He’s taught to lisp “a Kings Prerogatives.
  • The Baby learns to weedle, weep, and lye;
  • And with a Frown, puts Magna Charta by.
  • These are the Fruits of Perfidy and Lust!
  • Thus Bute proves true to England and his Trust!
  • Edition: current; Page: [296]
  • Nor in the Story is sly Mansfield’s Plot
  • Against our Laws and Liberties forgot;
  • (Mansfield) who moulds a Jury till they please;
  • Who in a court of Law makes Scotch Decrees;
  • Who bids the Criminal (1)HIMSELF BETRAY,
  • And makes Records (2)speak what he’d have ’em say.
  • Brave Wilkes confronts him with a Patriot-Face,
  • And in strong Colours tells his Country’s Case.
  • In the back Ground see the STAR CHAMBER plac’d,
  • Hung round with Hands, Ears, Tongues, Records eras’d.
  • Envenom’d MANSFIELD at the CRISIS spits,
  • And Smiles whilst Ketch the Writer’s Nostrils (3)slits.
  • There Fame reports the Wrongs that Thickness feels(4)
  • And servile Apsley weeps to lose the Seals.
  • Now see where Lust of Power wild Havock makes,
  • And every Frame, but pious Nero’s shakes!
  • The Artist, finishing what Bute first plann’d,
  • Pursues his subject with a trembling Hand;
  • Rolls thro’ the Piece sad Massachusetts Flood,
  • Her ruins smoaking, and her Fields in Blood.
  • Driven to Despair, see Bostonians Genius rise!
  • To wipe the Fear from all her Children’s Eyes.
  • Liberty leads ’em to the tented Field,
  • And Virtue guards ’em with a heav’nly Shield.
  • Behold her Troops their dastard Foes surprize!
  • And at her Head another Cromwell rise.
  • How long will Gage’s flimsy Force endure!
  • Edition: current; Page: [297]
  • Ticonderoga(1) and Crown Point are sure:
  • Freedoms awake, whilst Tyranny’s secure.
  • (2)Christs Vicar triumphs in this fruitful Wreck,
  • And arms his pious Children at Quebec;(3)
  • Not with vain Weapons of corporeal Steel,
  • But with Anathema’s, which Souls may feel;
  • With Pardons to those Babes of heav’nly Stamp,
  • Who shall contrive to Poison (4)Putnam’s Camp;
  • Within the Laws of Holy War shall keep,
  • And bravely murder Heriticks asleep.
  • His Holiness thinks England may be won,
  • And hopes to make of George another (5)John.
  • Whilst thus disturb’d th’ enrag’d Atlantic flows,
  • Britannia too is plung’d in Civil Woes.
  • Sound Policy her Streets with Slaughter fills,
  • And Perseverence multiplies her Ills;
  • Corruption pulls the Work of Ages down,
  • And Justice from a Tyrant tears his Crown.
  • Powr’s furious Storms, Wars, Famines, Terrors past,
  • America’s bright Sun breaks forth at last.
  • With Vict’ry see the closing Story fill’d;
  • Bostonians free, their fertile Fields re-still’d;
  • Their Senate seated—not in Tears to save
  • Their suppliant Sons from Famine and the Grave;
  • But independent—to pronounce that Law,
  • Which shall, in Times to come, keep Kings in Awe;
  • Their native Kings—no more to Britain bound,
  • But Masters of themselves on happier Ground;
  • Edition: current; Page: [298]
  • Not gall’d by Chains beneath a Tyrant’s Gripes,
  • Nor meanly crouching under slavish Stripes;
  • No more insulted by a butchering Band,
  • But Guardians of their Rights and native Land;
  • America no more shall bend the Knee,
  • Bless’d in a State that’s virtuous, rich, and free,
  • And well divided from her Foes by Sea.
  • No longer for a British Vassal known,
  • But boasting Laws, Fleets, Armies, Kings, her own.
  • In Pray’r she turns to Heav’n her thankful Eyes;
  • To Heav’n, that bids her now to Empire rise;
  • Lays at her Feet the Tyrant, and his Tax,
  • A Body headless, and a wreeking Ax.(1)

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [299]


To be continued Weekly

[Price Two-pence Half-penny

asterisks Whilst the News Papers are Daily FILLED (in compliance with a rediculous Proclamation, and to the eternal Disgrace of the Printers) with the laboured Performances of Ministerial Writers in favour of DESPOTISM; the CRISIS will be found to contain the most spirited Essays in support of the CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTIES of ENGLAND and AMERICA, and the natural Rights of Mankind. The Authors are determined to proceed at this dangerous and alarming Crisis, even at the hazard of their Lives; regardless of any STAR CHAMBER Proceedings of the King’s Attorney General, or Ten Thousand PROCLAMATIONS, fabricated by the infamous Minions of an arbitary DESPOT, and issued from the Sink of Corruption. Firmly persuaded they shall meet with the Assistance, Support, and Protection of those who are the real Friends of their Country.

  • ——How short of reason he must fall,
  • Who thinks all made for One, not One for all!——Pope.1
Edition: current; Page: [300]

MY two last Papers, described the morbid State of the Ministerial Majority of the great Council of this Nation, pointed the only Cure by Dissolution, and shewed the Reason and Necessity for applying that Cure in time. I shall still pursue my Thoughts upon that Subject. And here I must averr, that a Patriot King can neither Think nor Act with a venal and corrupt Parliament. The Brunswick Family were called to the Crown of this Kingdom as Patriot Princes, in favour of Liberty and the Protestant Cause. Has Liberty been supported by the Violation of the Rights of Election, as in Wilkes’s Case? Has the Protestant Religion been maintained by the late Quebec Bill, for establishing Popery in that Part of his Majesty’s Dominions? But the Father of our Church, the Primate and Metropolitan of all England, has not hesitated to declare lately in the House of Lords, that, in his Opinion, the Quebec Bill had not established, but only tolerated Popery in that Province,—Fye, Fye, my Lord!—read the Bill again:—your Grace’s Character should be more sacred than that of a Mansfield, a Denbigh, or a Sandwich. Permit me to assure you, that it can be no Honour to your Grace to resemble your Predecessor Laud, in any Part of your ecclesiastic Character.

If our Norman Conqueror, William, thought it Wise to pay some respect to the National Constitution, will a Brunswick ever set his Face against it? Could that Patriotic Legislature, to whose paternal Care we owe our present happy Establishment in Church and State, could they have supposed that any future King would connive at the most dangerous Innovations in both? Would a Patriot King have suffered so wicked, so anti-constitutional a Parliament, to have sat another Edition: current; Page: [301] Day? Could such a King have been afraid of wanting Supplies, when he had gained the Hearts of his People? Could a Dissolution of one of the most iniquitious Parliaments that ever infested England, have been productive of any other Consequence, than that National Happiness which was the primary Object at the glorious Revolution? It is true this Parliament was dissolved at last, but for no Patriotic Reason; the Administration saw, and feared a glimmering Spark of Virtue, not yet totally extinguished by Luxury and Corruption. They feared a Test and Association.—Shall we say that our Sovereign feared it too? Were all the three great Estates of this Kingdom in league against the Rights and Liberties of the People? I could wish that a Statesman of Lord Mansfield’s acknowledged Abilities, would give an Honest Answer to this Question. If either, or both of the inferior Estates were culpable (as they most certainly were) a Dissolution of that arbitrary Body was but national Justice. This Justice was not only delayed, but denied, in defiance of Magna Charta, the great Bulwark of the English Constitution. If that sacred Act of Parliament is yet in force, and not erased or destroyed, it will Support me in asserting, that Justice has been withheld, by not dissolving, at the Suit of the Subject; and the most flagrant System of Iniquity has been promoted by dissolving the last infamous Parliament at the instigation of the Minister; who is really, and truely, Lord Bute still. To that detested Influence we owe every national Grievance since the Commencement of the present Reign. Two of the greatest of these Grievances are the long Continuance of the last, and the Smuggling of the present Parliament. The Consequence of which will, most probably, be a Civil War in England and America; nor will that War remain unembroiled by the hostile Powers of France and Spain. By the sudden and artful Dissolution of the last Parliament, Corruption was not only connived at and tolerated, but (like Popery by the Quebec Bill) it was encouraged, propagated, and established.

When the People petitioned for a Dissolution of that execrable Parliament, they were answered with Contumely and Frowns. At that Tyrannic Period, when the Lower House was Rotten, were not Twenty-five found Peers in the Upper, who had Courage and Honesty enough to Edition: current; Page: [302] do their Duty by procuring Justice for the People? Had they all forgot the Seventy-third Clause of Magna Charta?2 or, is that glorious Statute obsolete? Perhaps, a Repeal of it is to be attempted by the corrupt Majority in the present Parliament. Till that Charter is annihilated, the Peers of England (I mean the Honest Part of them) are bound to see Right and Justice done to all the People. Though they are not the Representatives of the People, they are the Guardians of the Realm, and as such they are answerable to the People for all the bad Effects of any unjust Conduct in the Sovereign, against which they did not oppose all their Weight. It is not enough that they protest in their own Journals against Arbitrary and unjust Proceedings; they ought also to demand, and as far as in them lies, to procure Redress. I will not (in the insolent and gross Language of Lord Denbigh) say that far honester Men than his Lordship were wicked and traiterous Men for not doing this; but I will say that their courtly Modesty has betrayed them into a Breach of national Trust; for which Breach they are accountable to the whole Realm. Though they are not Delegates of the People, they are, like constitutional Eyes in the Body Politic, bound to be watchful and observant over the other two Estates for the Public Good; that no Innovations may be made, that no Strides towards Despotism may be taken by either. They are Part of the great Council of the Crown by Birth, when in Parliament assembled; but they can neither live, nor act with Dignity, in such Times as these, unless they live and act for their Country. What pernicious Effects to the whole British Empire have flowed, and are still likely to flow, from their Modest and passive Silence, at a Time when the whole Kingdom was Edition: current; Page: [303] alarmed, and just supplicating the Throne for a Redress of Grievances! to be relieved against the daily Oppressions of a corrupt Majority, stood foremost in their Prayers. They prayed (and well they might) above all Things, for a Dissolution of the last perfidious Parliament. It was denied them in prejudice of Justice and the Constitution, to be granted shortly afterwards in favour of Tyranny and Corruption.

Let us now mark the Consequences of this Denial in the one Case, and of this ready Compliance in the other. Here We too may be well astonished in our Turn, and astonished with much more Reason than a Constitutional King could be, at the just Petitions of an injured and aggrieved People.—We are astonished at an impious attempt to change the Constitution of England by violating the Rights of Election. We are astonished at the Tyrannic Treatment of America, who has an equal Right to the same Constitution. Nor can we agree with Lord Mansfield, (who as Chief Justice of England, ought to be the Guardian of English Liberty) when he declares in an illiberal, servile, and sycophantic Tone, that a bad Constitution is better than no Constitution at all. Yet his Lordship, like another Drances (whose Character he remembers)3 is not ashamed to declare this in a British Senate. I Answer, that (whatever an eloquent Coward may think) it is better not to exist at all, than to exist a Slave! His Lordship, I presume, is of a very different Opinion. His late Sentiments on this Head respect America, whose Religion our Parliament are endeavouring to subvert in derogation of the royal Word to our settlers at Quebec; and whose Pockets they are picking, not by legal Taxation, but by Tyranny. For who will affirm that the Money of the Americans is the Property of Edition: current; Page: [304] the People of England? If not, how can it be legally disposed of by the Representatives of the People of England only, in a British Parliament, to which no American Representatives are admitted? The Civil Law says, your Scotch Law, Lord Mansfield, says, and our English Law says, nay common Sense says, Nemo dat quod non habet. “No one can give and grant what is not his own.”—Had the last fatal Parliament been dissolved when they first attempted to Tyrannize, England might have escaped a Civil War, and America Desolation. I flatter myself that She will yet escape the Chains of English Tyrants; and if She must fall, that She will surrender Herself to some foreign Power, who cannot use her with more despotic Severity than her natural Parent. Lord Denbigh asked some Time ago in the House of Lords, what End Administration could have in enslaving America? I will Answer him without reserve.—Administration hopes for Plunder from America.—Corruption cannot be supported without Means.—They are grasping at the Treasures of America, not to defray the Expences of American Government, but for their own vile Uses. A free Parliament which alone can save this Nation, would destroy them. Traytors would be impeached and suffer. When the civil Counsellors of the Sovereign were called for, to what Asylum must Bute and Mansfield fly? North’s Servility might, perhaps, be pitied; and the blustrings of a Denbigh and a Sandwich would be heard no more. Should the Hopes of these Men succeed, we should soon see them and their Dependants reaping the Spoils of their flagitious Labours. An arbitary and rapacious System of Government would ensue, and we should soon see a new Exchequer, and a new Treasury, arise out of the Ruins of America. To these there must be necessary and unnecessary Appendants, swarms of official Locusts; and those industriously multiplied, for the further Advancement of Corruption and Tyranny, not only in America but (as America has foretold) in Great Britain likewise. Nor would ministerial Providence be remiss in planting a standing Army in America to secure their virtuous Conquest, they would, like true Patriots, extend their Paternal Care still further; they would never rest till they had fixed their despotic Government upon a respectable and permanent Foundation. A Vice-Roy, a Bashaw of seven Tails, must be appointed Edition: current; Page: [305] to silence the Murmurs of his Captives with a Frown.—Thus have I reminded Lord Denbigh of the Ends which he and his corrupt Fraternity most certainly have in endeavouring to enslave America.

I now proceed to enumerate the further Consequences of not dissolving the late execrable Parliament in due Time, and of procuring another Parliament, by the basest Means, equal, if not superior in Merit to the Former. One of the most alarming Consequences will be, the destruction of our Liberties by the constituted Representatives, and fiduciary Guardians of the People; for such are the Lords and Commons of this Realm, in Parliament assembled. One Innovation in the System of political Government, will ever produce another. Thus will artful Tyrants effectuate a total Change of a national Constitution by degrees. Such a Change we must expect to see. The bloody and inhuman Scene is already opened in America to be closed in England. Had a former Parliament been dissolved at the Suit of the Subject, instead of the Minister, and had a subsequent Parliament not been smuggled, and infamously packed by a treacherous Surprize upon the People, the present wicked ministerial System had been broke; England had regained her Constitutional Freedom, (particularly as to her Rights of Election) and America had regained that State to which She is intitled to by the Laws of God, of Nature, of England, of Humanity—by the plighted Faith of Sovereigns, and by her own Merits and Virtues; the greatest of which is, not that She has bravely by her own Arm, subdued our savage Enemies, the Indians: not that She has as bravely assisted in subduing our more polite Enemies the French; but that She disdains to be subdued herself, by her more inimical and perfidious Parent.

Had that accursed Parliament been dissolved, and the Wicked taken away from before the King, then had his Throne been established in Righteousness; then had a most infernal Groupe of Traytors gained their Reward in this World, upon the Scaffold and the Gibbet; perhaps, their Holy Father, the Pope, (whose Power they are now establishing in America) might have ensured their Souls, for a valuable Consideration, in the next. Then had a deluded Sovereign once more recovered his own Honour, and the expiring Affections of his People; then had this Reign been Edition: current; Page: [306] no longer marked for Dissimulation, Hypocrisy, Perfidity, Prodigality, Cruelty, Injustice, Tyranny, and BLOOD. Then would the Descendants of the trayterous Thane, and his ministerial Herd, (the most Infamous and daring that ever yet made the Reign of a British King truly odious to his People) be taught by the recorded Punishments of their detested Ancestors,

  • ——How short of Reason he must fall,
  • Who thinks all made for One, not One for all.

N.B. In No XXXIV. we propose to DISSECT the Master Butcher, Lord Bute, Lord Mansfield, and the Proclamation.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Andertons Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [307]


To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two Pence Half-penny.


To Lord BUTE.

My Lord,

I Shall address your Lordship with as little Ceremony as you have met with Occasionally, from certain great Personages, whose Names and Memories are odious to you, because they knew your Baseness and abhorred your Principles. The singular Iniquity of your Lordship’s moral and political Character, makes all Apology unnecessary. Your Loyalty as a Subject, and your Virtues as a Man, are equally conspicuous. The Mischiefs which your baneful Influence has wrought throughout the British Empire, will endure perhaps, for Ages after your detested Person is mingled with the Dust. Your pernicious Counsels have destroyed our Commerce, checked and discouraged our Manufactures, distressed our Colonies, impoverished our Merchants, injured Public Credit, impaired our Trade, promoted Corruption, dishonoured the Nation, and plunged the most Virtuous part of our Dominions, in all the Horrors of a Civil War, which you most impudently affect to call Rebellion. Your Lordship should remember that what Jacobites call Rebellion, we Revolutionists Edition: current; Page: [308] term constitutional Resistance. We detest the Principles of the Stuarts, renounce their slavish Doctrines, and hold that Wretch to be an Enemy to this Kingdom, who shall attempt (like your Lordship) to revive them. Such Principles instilled into the Mind of a weak King, must be productive of another Revolution. Yet, in spite of this Reflection, your Lordship, in Combination with your Associate Mansfield, continues still to persevere. Under your united Efforts the Crown has lost its Dignity, the Parliament their Honour, the People their Security, and the Nation its Importance.

The grand Tribunal of English Justice is biassed by Pique and Prejudice; perverted by the crafty Insinuations of your pliant Mansfield, bullyed by the empty Blusters of a Denbigh, and betrayed into Acts of the most iniquitous Partiality by the outnumbering Votes of mercenary Scotch Lords, purposely sent down by your Lordship’s Agents, to countenance the Lord High Chancellor of England, in a servile and base Compliance with the Commands of his Creator Mansfield.

In Proof of these Assertions, I refer your Lordship (though very needlesly) to the late Case of Mr. Thickness in the House of Lords, and to No. VII. X. and XXX. of the Crisis; where you will see (to your Shame) a true and striking Picture of national Justice, under the wise Government of Bute and Mansfield; which it is now become Treason and Rebellion (though the three Great Estates of this Kingdom are misled by you) to oppose. I again averr, my Lords, that under your united Efforts, the State, and every Appendage of it is a Snare for the People; all its Councils act in Subversion of our Rights and Liberties and the very Cabinet is become a Pandæmonium.

As your Lordship’s carnal Sins were happily lessened by the welcome Death of your imperious Mistress, so your political Sins are like to find a speedy End, either in your Master’s Ruin, or your own.

Your Lordship must not take this Epistle as admonitory, it is only meant as declaratory of that Sense which the whole British Empire has of your Lordship’s Merits, and supreme influence and Power over the Property, Lives, and Liberties of Englishmen. Let me likewise add, that though I address your Lordship by Name, I neither wish for your Attention, nor Edition: current; Page: [309] your Reformation. Not for the First, as I mean to use you, at present (as you constantly use your Sovereign) merely as a Vehicle; not for the Second as I hope to see your Lordship shortly on the Scaffold. For these Reasons, my Lord, I make free with your execrated Name, for the single Purpose of conveying my Sentiments to the People; as your Lordship frequently makes use of your Sovereign’s, for the sake of dispensing your corrupt Munificience among your Slaves, gratifying your Avarice and Ambition, or indulging your Malice and Revenge. Were your Master penetrable, I might wish that these Lines could find their Way to him; but your Lordship’s Agents carefully guard every Avenue of Access either to his Person or his Understanding The one you have rendered Odious, and the other Contemptable. However, before the Executioner holds up your devoted Head, I will undertake to dissect your treacherous Heart; this will afford a useful Lecture to a deluded King; and that will be a joyful Spectacle to an injured People. Upon inspection of that Pernicious Organ, we shall be sure to find the blackest Ingratitude, the most atrocious Perfidy, the foulest Lust, the rankest Disloyalty, the meanest Duplicity, and the most dangerous Ambition. The three first of these Virtues discovered themselves long since, against your former Master, who raised you from the Obscurity of a Scotch Lairdling, to the Notice of an English Court. His generous Friendship first placed your Lordship on the lowest round of that Ladder, which you have since ascended with such impetuous Strides. He drew you forth (in an ill Hour) from a little private Residence which your Pride has now forgot. As soon as your Lordship gained Courage to look upwards, you basely rewarded his Benevolence by doing him repeated Injuries in the tenderest Point; In a Point, where not only his Honour, but a Nation’s, was concerned. You fawned, you flattered, you insinuated, and at length effected your treacherous Designs, upon the Weakness and Vanity of a lascivious Woman. You had the audacions Villainy to hope for the production of another Reign of Scots. Your abandoned Principles, conjoined with more than German Lewdness, prompted your insatiate Vanity to a Deed which might lay the Ground-Work of your impious Designs upon this Kingdom. Whether your perfidious Wish succeeded, you best know; but your Lordship’s Influence is as great as if it had. Not content with the humble Character of a Schoolmaster, Edition: current; Page: [310] you have most impudently assumed the Father, where (conscious of your unpardonable Guilt) you should have trembled to have interposed. But Ambition (the Vice of Scotchmen) would not suffer you to check your insolent and aspiring Hopes, by a Moment’s reasonable Reflection. To your native Virtues, you added those of a Bothwell and a Rizzo.1 Thus did you most ungratefully, most perfidiously, and most audaciously, requite your first princely Benefactor. After the period of your impious Hopes of producing a suppositious Burthen upon a People were at an End, you still submitted to endure your former loathsome Connection, for the sake of Rank and Lucre; and in hopes of preserving your Mock-paternal Authority during the inglorious Life of an unhappy Pupil, intrusted to your Care; whom you wished to fashion (and have fashioned) for your Purposes. Under the filthiest Yoke of female Lust, for which both Agent and Patient should have suffered Capitally, your Lordship most servilely condescended to maintain your Power, not at the Expence of Honour, (for you lost that upon your first perfidious Contact) but even at the Expence of Health; a Blessing, which is, for the sake of divine Justice, often granted to the worst of Men. Your Lordship is a striking Instance that Impurity of Mind and Body go together.

Though you have (to the general Joy) lost your guilty Paramour, though you have obtained more Riches and Honours than a wise Man would have wished, and far greater than a wicked one deserves, yet your Lordship still continues Restless and Dissatisfied; you still affect to govern; you still blindly and fatally persevere in your pernicious Counsels, at the hazard of your Life, and to the Ruin of the English Nation. Your hopes Edition: current; Page: [311] of greater Honours must be over. You are so generally detested by all Ranks, that you durst not ask, or receive them. Though you are Mean enough still to share the royal Bounty, and permit your Family to beg and pillage from your Sovereign, yet one might hope (since every Man’s Hand and Heart is against you) that universal Hatred, conscious Guilt, Shame, Fear, and Contrition, for your past Offences, would induce, or rather impell your Lordship, to withdraw your baneful Influence before it is too late.

I am no Stranger to your Lordship’s false Pretence for interfering still.—You say, you cannot in Honour refuse your Counsels to your Sovereign—nay, you dare to add, that purity of Heart is your Motive, and Innocence your Shield.—But would your Lordship chuse to own, even in your present House of Lords, the Discovery made by the late Duke of York? The Contempt and Indignation you was treated with by the late Duke of Cumberland?2 The stinging Truths you heard, and the gross Contumelies you received from the deceased Duke of Bedford? Why did your Lordship, with so much of the Stuart Blood in your Veins, decline the Challenge of that fiery Duke? Why did you tamely receive the Lye from him? Was it merely in compliance with the long established Custom of a Court, which allows one political Knave to deceive and abuse another with Impunity? However this might be, to the last mentioned Duke you crouched; nay, you hid yourself from his Resentment, and contrived to sooth him by scattering Douceurs and Places amongst his Gang. To the two other Dukes your Lordship was most deservedly Odious, as you were well known by them to owe your rapid Rise to servile Lust, and secret Treason. They saw you live to be a stain to their Family and a pest to the Kingdom. They then feared, as we now feel, the Consequences Edition: current; Page: [312] of that fatal Ascendency which you have completely gained over the weakest Man in England. Were that Man’s Sensations delicate, his Resentments Manly, or his Understanding moderately good, your Lordship had long since been wiped out of that Rank which you continue to disgrace. But (unhappy for England) the Traytor is suited to the Tyrant, and the Tyrant to the Traytor. Your Lordship has artfully thickened the Ignorance, fed the Pride, created and confirmed the Prejudices, imposed upon the Weakness, cherished and even administered to the Vices of your dull Superior, till he is become as a Lump of kneaded Dough, under the plastic Hand of your Lordship and your crafty Agent Mansfield.

As a convincing Instance of this Truth, let me ask your Lordship, Whether a late Proclamation might not with more Propriety, have been Published on the First of April, than on the Twenty Third of August last? It was calculated by your Coadjuror Mansfield plainly with a View of deluding the English Soldiers, who begin now to revolt at the Thought of murdering their Fellow Subjects. This Massacree must be attempted by none but Scotchmen. What Soldier (not an Ideot, or in Liquor) will be brought to think that the Americans (as this Proclamation declares) withstand the Execution of the Laws? Every Man of the meanest Capacity must see that they mean only to oppose the Execution of Themselves and Families, and to prevent the illegal Extinction of all Law; which it is not in the Power of a corrupt Legislature to effect.

Have the Americans levyed War against the King, my Lord? Or has your Lordship, in the King’s Name, levyed War against them? Have they, in Truth, acted any other than a defensive Part? Is an English Subject bound, since the Revolution, to act a passive Part? At that memorable and blessed Period, were not certain Rights confirmed to them and their Posterity, which they are bound most Religiously to maintain and defend, even against a corrupt Government? Let us, for a Moment, suppose the worst of Cases that can happen; a corrupt and desperate Combination of the Three Great Estates of this Kingdom to enslave the Subject. Are the People to crouch in passive Obedience to such Tyrants? If the Americans have been guilty (as the Proclamation says) of disturbing the Public Peace, will Breaches of the Peace by Mobs in a Colony, warrant a Breach of Edition: current; Page: [313] royal Charters, an infringement of constitutional Rights, a Perversion of Justice, or alteration of the established Modes of Trial, in the Vicinity, and by Juries; are these Offenders (which were but few, and the lowest of the People) to be dragged out of the Territory to be tried by Persons who cannot be supposed to have the least knowledge (as a Jury should) of the Facts committed? Is this the Law of the Land? Or can that Law, the Birth-Right of an English Subject, be altered or taken away, even by an Act of Parliament? Most clearly not. The greatest and honestest Lawyers (Lord Chief Justice Holt3 among the rest) have declared that even a Man’s right of Action cannot be taken away by an Act of Parliament. Yet our virtuous Parliament not only annihilates their established Rights (the Inheritance of every Subject) but has sent out Fire, Sword and Famine, throughout a whole Country, because Breaches of the Peace have been committed by Mobs; and because the People justly and bravely claim a Repeal of all those unconstitutional and tyrannic Acts of a venal Parliament, which have robbed them of the clear Rights and Privileges of English Subjects; have sported with their Lives, their Liberties and Properties, and given them perpetual Slavery for their Charter.

Such Innovations, Impositions, and Oppressions, the Americans are expected to bear under your Lordship’s Government, or they are proclaimed Rebels. If your Lordship should succeed in your present Stratagem, your pliant Parliament will shortly annihilate the English, as they have lately the American Constitution. They will crouch, like Spaniels, to have the Net drawn over themselves and their Posterity. That all Subjects are bound by Law to aid and assist in suppressing a real Rebellion, I agree, but are they also bound to aid and assist in Edition: current; Page: [314] suppressing lawful, revolutional Resistance? If the Rights of the Subject have been violated (as they clearly have) in America, can a flimsy Proclamation, or even a tyrannic Act of Parliament, sanctify these Breaches of English Liberty? Is the Defence of constitutional Rights, Rebellion, because a ministerial Parliament, or a depending Privy Council stiles it so? Falsities are not to be thrust down the Throats of Englishmen by a Proclamation. They, and the Americans have Magna Charta, the Bill of Rights, the Establishment at the Revolution, and they ought to have the CORONATION OATH, in protection of these, to depend upon. If either of these are violated, after dutiful Petitions have been proferred, and those Petitions have been refused, denied, or slighted by the Sovereign, it is with a very ill Grace, and entirely without Reason, that the Crown betakes itself to calling Names in a studied Proclamation. Let me now ask what Attempts have been made against the King, unless by repeated Supplications that he will remember his solemn Engagements, attend to his own Interest and that of his People, which ought to be but One; and listen to the Dictates of Reason, Justice, sound Policy, and Humanity? As to his Majestys Crown and Dignity, are they endangered by any of his Subjects except your Lordship and your Chief Justice? Can your Lordships then (for I suppose you clubbed for this Proclamation) be in Sober, serious Earnest, when you charge all loyal Subjects to transmit full Information of all Aiders and Abettors to one of the principal Secretaries of State? If so, it may be Misprision of Treason4 in me to conceal your Lordships. Had I the Dishonour of being a Member of the present House of Commons, I would impeach your Lordship of High Treason the earliest Day of next Sessions; for you yourselves, my Lords, have, by your wicked Counsels, excited this Resistance, which you nick-name Treason; and therefore you are yourselves the only Trayters in this Kingdom. Can your Lordships really wish to be brought (as you certainly deserve) to condign Punishment, Edition: current; Page: [315] and to make your Exit upon Tower-Hill? Alas! you are too Circumspect, too Designing, and too Cunning, even for yourselves.

The Eyes of the Military begin to open, they now discern not only the Inhumanity, but the impracticability of your Lordship’s intended Massacree in America. Passively obedient as Discipline hath made them, they yet feel they are Men. The Valour, Virtue, Generosity, and Humanity, of their Fellow-Subjects in America, have touched their Hearts. The compasionate and tender Terms offered to the poor Remains of the King’s Troops, shut up in Boston by the brave Washington at the Head of a most powerful Army, not of Mercenaries, but of Volunteers, have convinced the simplest of his Majesty’s deluded Soldiers, that they are sent to America as so many Sacrifices to your Lordship’s infernal Schemes. Reflection and sad Experience have now taught them that if they Conquered, they could be but dishonoured Murderers. If twenty thousand Men would be (as your Lordships Generals say) but a feeble Reinforcement in America, I have Charity enough to doubt whether your Lordship could find even Scots enough to compleat the Business; for your Lordship must know that the Lives of your Countrymen have been much more valuable to them since the Union. If you cannot muster a sufficient Number of Scotchmen, I flatter myself that your Lordship will hardly find a Body of English Troops to serve your Purpose. The latter are a kind of People not easily cajoled, deluded, or intimidated into a Service they dislike. They will not submit to be made use of as Assassins, or to be sent on such inhuman Expeditions as would disgrace the Cut-Throats of an Alley. How vain then is your Lordship’s late delusive Proclamation? To what Purpose has your Lordship stooped to bribe the Publishers of a late occasional Paper called the Remembrancer?5 Will the Suppression of such Edition: current; Page: [316] Truths as that Publication might contain, assist your Lordship’s Hopes, or allay your Fears? Can your Lordship’s Plans be disconcerted by every Information which the People of Great Britain may receive? Does the Success of your Lordship’s Politics depend upon their being kept in profound Ignorance? If your Lordship’s Zeal is real, and your Heart is truly loyal, instead of silencing the Voice of Truth, and poaching for Generals who will be base enough to receive the Price of Murder at your Hands; go forth yourself with your desperate Clans, and let us hear with Joy, that you have expired like a wounded Monster, in the Dust. Skulk no longer from the Public Eye, but quit your lurking-Place, and make the cowardly Americans fly at the Name of Bute. Prefer Destruction in the Field, to Death upon a Scaffold. Rather face the Vengeance of America, than wait till you receive the Dagger of a Felton in your perfidious Bosom. Should your Lordship, when your pernicious Soul is fled to the World of Spirits, have yet a Sense of what passes in this sublunary Globe, what a Change of Men, of Measures, and of Circumstances will you then observe? You will not then behold your Descendents (as you vainly Hope) enriched by the Plunder of vanquished and distressed America. You will not see her crouching, like a Vassal, under a Scotch Vicegeneracy, or lamenting her Calamities amidst the Ruins of her depopulated Cites. No—You will view, with a malignant Eye, the Ocean covered with her Fleets, and Sovereigns of great Nations suing for her Friendship, or dreading her Displeasure. You will not then see Famine preying on her People, her Habitations laid waste, her Empire filled with Slaughter, Desolation, and Distress; but you will admire the Richness of her Fields, the Industry of her Inhabitants, the Plenteousness and Opulence of her Cities, the Magnificence of her Palaces, the Abundance of her Commerce, the Strength of her Fleets and Armies, the Wisdom, Policy, Virtue and Stability of her Government; and, above all, the unerring Justice of her Laws.

With such a Scene of Happiness, your Lordship may contract that lamentable Period wherein you and your Minions governed, dishonoured and distressed Great Britain and America; when the Laws were violated, Justice prostituted, Liberty invaded, Subjects massacreed, the great Charter of the Nation and all its established Rights derided, Corruption openly admitted into Church and State, and suffered to take her Seat even in the Edition: current; Page: [317] last resort of Justice; the three Great Estates of this Kingdom most venally united against the Constitution, the sacred Compact between Sovereign and Subject broken, Public Faith expiring, Civil Discord raging; Weakness, Perfidy, and Tyranny, at length Dethroned; a discontented People emigrating, and the Seat of Empire changed, after a necessary Revolution, from England to America.6 These will be the sure Effects of your impolitic and inhuman Perceverance; the Vice not of brave, wise, and pious Kings, but of dastardly, wicked, weak, and unfeeling Tyrants. Then will the senseless Idol, which your Lordship Worships, (the Work of your own Hands) be thrown down; then will your Lordship’s Posterity feel the Weight of all your political Iniquities, visited upon them and theirs, and lament in deserved Poverty and Contempt, the complicated Crimes of their ambitious Ancestors to the latest Generations. THUS MAY DIVINE JUSTICE AVENGE THE SUFFERINGS OF AN INJURED PEOPLE.


Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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To be continued Weekly.

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  • Splendide mendax——
  • Hor.1
  • What will not artful Ministers devise?
  • O! how they triumph in their glorious Lies!

To the AUTHORS of the CRISIS.


AS one of your Correspondents, I beg leave to call upon you, and hope you will take this short Hint into Consideration: nay, I flatter myself that you have Interest enough to invoke the Assistance of Junius upon it. Unable to check the Progress of your constitutional Paper, either by Prosecution, or Persecution, the Runners of Edition: current; Page: [320] Administration have been industrious lately in scattering oblique Hints abroad, that the Ministry themselves have set your Paper on Foot, by Way of laying a sure Ground for stopping the Liberty of the Press. Their Drift is easily perceived. They wish, by every, and any Means, to stop your Channel of popular Information. The Light of Truth is too strong for them. The weekly Product of your Press is too alarming.

In the name of England I call upon you, Gentlemen, not only to stand forth in print, in Defence of your own Cause, and that of your Country, but to chastise this abandoned and artful Ministry, for their insolent Aspersions. Should they ever dare (but what will they not dare) to attack the Press, no Hand that can hold a Dagger ought to rest, whilst there is a Heart among this hellish Gang that can be perforated. They ought to be pursued, and dragged from behind the Throne, to instant and immediate Justice. Their mangled Limbs should be scattered throughout the Palace of any Tyrant who shall presume to interpose between the Temerity of Minions, and the just Revenge of an insulted Nation.

Administrations in such a Government as Ours, act at their Peril. They are always, and always ought to be, accountable to the People. They are bound not only to ensure, but to hear, to pay Attention to, the Sentiments of the People, and to redress their Grievances. Under a Whiggish King, Ministers of State are Servants of the Public. Under a Tory King (who must be an Enemy to Revolution Principles) they are Instruments of Despotism and Destruction. Under the First, they will hear patiently, proceed justly, and redress wisely. Under the Latter, they will act tyrannically (like our present Ministry) and endeavour to stifle the Voice of just Complaint; first, by stopping Pens, and then by stopping Mouths. They will proceed from the Press to the Person; they will take away Life as well as Liberty; and for every popular Libel (that is, for every popular Truth) which is published, there will, at length, follow a ministerial Assassination.

A wicked Administration may well be jealous of the Press. It is like a national Alarum bell, wisely placed in the Palladium of British Liberty, to proclaim the approaching Enemy by Day, and to deter the undermining Thief at Night.

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As for the respectable (for it is ignorant and ridiculous to say sacred) Character of a King, it will ever be revered, whilst it continues amiable and good: When it is warped by the wicked Advice of designing Men, it must ever be stigmatized and detested by a Free People.

This is the Condition of that painful Pre-eminence called Sovereignty in all Nations, which are not, and will not submit to be, enslaved. Upon this Condition is the Crown received among Us; upon this Condition, only, can it be held, with Dignity, Peace, and Safety. There is a Majesty of the Sovereign, but there is, also, a Majesty of the People. If the Sovereign cannot brook Offence, he must neither countenance nor offer Violence. Such Attempts cannot pass without due Notice from the People. They must be undertaken with the greatest Hazard; they cannot be enforced without the Severest Censure, and, perhaps, at last, without exemplary Punishment.


asterisks One of the greatest Blessings this Nation enjoys, superior to any other, is, undoubtedly, the Liberty of the Press, that noble Freedom of venting our Compliants, and speaking our Mind in Print. In most other Countries, no Man dare to open his Mouth on Religion or Politics, but in Conformity to Government, nor dare to publish his Sentiments, but at the Hazard of his Safety—What is this but perfect Slavery?—There was a Time when it was so with Us, when nothing could appear without an Imprimatur—But some Men, of more Resolution than others; dared to open their Mouths against arbitrary Proceedings, and tyrannical Encroachments; They shewed their deluded Countrymen the great Advantage of Public Spirit, convinced them of their former Vassalage, and urged them to stand forth in Defence of their Rights and Privileges; they did so; and by a noble Resistance, a Resistance well timed, secured Freedom to their Posterity, and immortal Honour to themselves.—This Freedom we have long been in Possession of;—it is now become the Birth-right of Englishmen—and this Freedom the Authors of the CRISIS are determined never to relinquish, but with their Lives.—The Establishment of a FREE PRESS, and the under-written Address to the Public, will, the Authors doubt not, be a sufficient and satisfactory Contradiction to all the ministerial LIES that have been fabricated against Edition: current; Page: [322] the CRISIS, by a Tribe of pensioned Rascals, who are employed to write down Truth, and establish Falshood, only with a View to deceive and mislead the People, and to draw their Attention from the true Channel of faithful Information, and from that Destruction with which they are now threatened.


Freedom of the Press, } DEFENDED.
Trial by Jury, }
Magna Charta, }
Bill of Rights, }
Resistance to Tyranny }
Informations ex officio, } RESISTED.
Proclamations, and all Violations of Law and Right, }
Thomas William Shaw
Shaw, Thomas William
September 16, 1775

To the PUBLIC.

THE LIBERTY of the PRESS is inestimable, it is sacred, and shall not be destroyed by the arbitrary Efforts of a Pious King and Tory Ministry.—Whilst most of the NEWS PAPERS are Daily filled with the laboured Productions of MERCENARY Writers, employed to gloss over the infernal Measures of the present Reign; the CRISIS will be found to contain the most spirited Essays in favour of PUBLIC LIBERTY and the NATURAL RIGHTS of Mankind—I am determined at every Hazard, to support the FREEDOM of the Press, I shall never be intimidated by, nor submit to, any STAR CHAMBER Edition: current; Page: [323] Summons from the king’s ATTORNEY GENERAL, and by that Means leave myself at the Mercy of a Scotch Chief Justice, and sacrifice at once, the most glorious Privilege of my Countrymen, TRIAL by JURY.—I shall never pay any regard to PROCLAMATIONS, fully convinced they are issued at this Time, only to answer the infernal Purposes of DESPOTISM, and are a most daring and violent INFRINGEMENT on the established RIGHTS and LIBERTIES of the People of ENGLAND. Whatever Essays may be sent to me (fit for the Public Eye) in defence of the CHARTERED RIGHTS, and CONSTITUTIONAL LIBERTIES of the Brave Americans, who are nobly struggling in the Cause of Freedom, against the Treachery, Fraud, and Force, of impolitic, cruel, bloody, and unfeeling TYRANTS, shall be immediately inserted in the CRISIS.—The Spirit and extensive Sale of this Paper, exceeds, perhaps, any Periodical Publication of the kind, since the last GLORIOIUS REVOLUTION. It was set on Foot at this important Æra, to open the Eyes of the deceived, abused, betrayed, and almost enslaved People of England and America, and to put them upon their Guard against the fatal Designs of the Three Estates of this Kingdom, most venally united to DESTROY the CONSTITUTION. The Authors, conscious of the rectitude of their Actions, and convinced of the Utility, the Necessity, and Advantage of such a Paper, are determined to persevere, and hope for the ASSISTANCE of those who are Friends to LIBERTY, and wish to transmit the blessings of FREEDOM to SUCCEEDING AGES; for this Purpose they will enlarge their Paper as occasion shall require, that every Essay through the Channel .of the CRISIS, may be conveyed to the Public AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.—Letters will be gratefully received,

By the Publicks most obliged,
and most obedient Servant,
Printer and Publisher of the CRISIS.

N. B. Thirty-four Numbers of this spirited Paper, are already Published, and will be sent to any Part of England, CARRIAGE FREE, by directing as above.

Edition: current; Page: [324]

HINTS for the AUTHOR of the CRISIS.

AS soon as the Queen became a Mother, the Carleton House Troops chose her for their Chief. Lady Mansfield’s Sister, Lady Charlotte Finch, was, under the Denomination of Governess to the Prince, placed under the King’s Roof, to prevent any but the Scotch and Germans getting Access to the Queen. The Lords Mansfield and Bute stipulated with her Majesty to cause her Family to be naturalized, and make them considerable in England; and she, on her Part promised to keep the king in their Hands, and abet all their Schemes. The Duke of York opposed the Importation of the Germans with so much Vehemence, that the King, refused to enter into the Queen’s Measures: It was agreed she should have the Electoral Dominions for her Family. The King had promised the Government of Hanover to the Prince of Brunswick; but broke his Royal Word with him. The King of Prussia seeing the Spring of the King’s Conduct, not only threatened to seize Hanover, and obtained a large Sum of Money, but two Years ago he laid Claim to the miserable Principality of Strelitz, which had long been mortgaged to the House of Brandenbourg, and the Queen’s Friends discharged the Debt from England. In Germany all the unaccounted Millions center; and the Scotch have a Claim to the Places of Honour and Profit, as the Price agreed upon for the Services they have rendered the Queen. Several Scotch and Germans are employed to deceive the Public by false Representations in the public Papers, where most they feared Detection. The King’s Brothers are banished [from] the Court, the only Means by which the King might know the Truth. The Duke of Gloucester will soon resign his Life, which has long been a Burden from the cruel Treatment he has received. The Queen revenges upon him the Opposition she found from the Duke of York. The Queen of Denmark solicited, when living, but in vain, to return to her native Land, whilst the Princess of Brunswick declares she will never see England, till governed by ENGLISHMEN.

The King is rather the Dupe, than the Knave, of the Faction, and would relent in Favour of America, if the Queen would let him; but her Party drives her on, and she wants the King to be absolute, to carry her Point of transplanting her own Family. Prince Ernest is ever at the King’s Ear, Edition: current; Page: [325] pleading his own Cause, and Lady Charlotte Finch does her Duty by her Brother’s Patron Lord Mansfield.2

These Facts may be of Use to your Pen, which, alone, can do Justice to an injured Country, by dragging forth the vile Crew who govern the King and ruin America. Expose them to the World, and you will have the Thanks of all true Patriots.

I am your constant Reader,

N.B. No.36 will be addressed to his Pious Majesty GEORGE THE THIRD.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher, will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [326] Edition: current; Page: [327]


To be continued Weekly.

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  • The best of Kings destroys us like a Flood,
  • Each Morning washes in fresh Streams of BLOOD;
  • Like PIOUS Nero mounted on a THRONE.
  • Thinks he’s a GOD, and all Mankind his OWN.
  • An Ideal SCETCH of a FOOLISH KING.

  • ——Let the stricken Deer go weep.——
  • Shakespeare.1

To the KING.


LORD Bolingbroke has drawn a masterly Picture of a wise King in Idea, never, perhaps, to be realized in any Nation. As the contrary Character often has appeared, and may again, it seems a much easier Task to sketch out the Portrait of a foolish King. I will attempt to Edition: current; Page: [328] delineate this Phantom; but Woe be to the Kingdom it infests!—Indulging, Sir, my Imagination as an ideal Limner, I should. represent such a “King of Shreds and Patches” at the Head of a limited Monarchy, totally ignorant of the Constitution, fond of Government, but a Stranger to the Means. Trained in his Childhood to Hypocrisy, an early and habitual Practice would make him consummate in the Art. He would be told, no doubt, (as you have been) by his Preceptors, that the Operations of this Vice, in the Day of Affliction, may be of sovereign Use; but it can be of Use only to a weak, a wicked, and designing Prince. It may, indeed, at a desperate Juncture, (like the present) supply its narrow-minded Master’s Purpose; but Artifice is the meanest Tool of the meanest Politician; and Hypocrisy (which you glory in, and daily practice) the meanest of all Artifices. Its inward Workings, when its Professor is a Genius, may, at a dead Lift, fill the Eyes of distressed Majesty with Tears.

Tears, well timed, and flowing from a Prince, are, perhaps, the happiest, and most powerful, of all Resorces, to subdue, at once, the stubborn Virtue of the firmest Patriot. But, Sir, such dramatic Stratagems, which you have too often made use of, are beneath a King. He must be a Machiavel, indeed in practical Hypocrisy, who can thus basely toil to seduce the fairest Virtue, and yet be capable, the next instant, of boasting (as you once did) with a smiling Sneer,* of the Conquest his infamous Duplicity had made. A Conquest which might perhaps, be followed by Remorse, Despair, and Suicide. Such a Prince, acting under such a Mask, would be, as the dissembling Richard says, “Himself alone.2

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For the Honour of Mankind, it is to be hoped, that his equal never did, and yours never will, exist.—Such a Prince might be a Native of his Kingdom, but he would be an Alien in Sentiment. By the mere Accident of Birth, he might, probably, gain the Love of a generous People, without Merit or Attention; (as you have done) but, by his untoward Cast of Mind, he would lose it again, without Regret. A Want of Sensibility, joined to a natural Perverseness, but poorly marks the Father of a Country. Unacquainted with the Character, the Genius, the true Interests of his People, he would view them, Sir, through the false Medium which Ministers and Favourites (under the insolent and insidious Name of the King’s Friends) hold out to his Majesty. Thus he would, assuredly, become the most unpopular Man in his Kingdom, except his prime Favourite. To this Minion’s Tutelage, joined, perhaps, to that of a proud, vain, imperious, Mother, he might owe his Weakness, his lgnorance, his Misfortunes, and, at last, his Ruin. Despised by his People for his Folly, he would hate them for their discernment. Conscious that he had lost all Popularity, he would affect to scorn it, without reflecting, that the Contempt of a limited Monarch for the Affections of his People, must be the first and surest Step to his Destruction. Educated Sir, as you have been, like a Stuart, in despotic Notions, he would think (if he thought at all) and act accordingly. His very Vices would be idolized by his Flatterers, and dignified with the Name of Virtues. In the Language of Court-Flies, Hypocrisy would be Policy; Kneeling would be Piety and Religion. Even a daring Attempt in the most distant Parts of his Empire (by Way of Prelude) to subvert the established Religion of his Country, which he had sworn at the Altar to maintain, would pass, among these fawning Seducers of Majesty, for a splendid Instance of Moderation, and a tolerating Christian Spirit. The most bloody Acts of TYRANNY would be applauded, and encouraged by Addresses from a few mean, base, ignorant, slavish, bankrupt Merchants, and worthless Wretches in the Towns of Edition: current; Page: [330] Manchester, Lancaster, Leicester, and Liverpool. Partiality, Injustice, Slavery, and Death, and a manifest Neglect and Violation of the Laws, would usurp the Name of Mercy.

I can easily suppose such a King guilty of the greatest Breach of Justice, Trust, and Duty, by pardoning willful and wanton Murderers, ministerial Affassins, Sodomites, &c. &c. He would be merciful, at one Time, to oblige a Favourite, or a Whore, and, at another, merely (like a Baby) to shew his Power, not from any just, humane, or solid Reason, which, alone, can justify the Exertion of that amiable and God-like Part of the Prerogative. Let such Kings know, and you should know, that Mercy shewn to the greatest Pests of Society, is Cruelty to the Kingdom.

Nor is this the only Error which servile Adulation would countenance in such a Government, or Nick-name in such a Court. Meanness, there, even in Point of Royal Hospitality, would pass for Œconomy. Abstemiousness, practiced, not rationally, or philosophically, but timidly, merely to prolong an useless, invaluable, and detested Life, would be honoured with the Name of Temperance. An unrelenting, implacable, and Female Spirit of Resentment, (infinitely beneath a Prince towards his Subject) would be extolled as an Instance of Fortitude, Magnitude, and Resolution. But if a Martyn, a Dun, or a Talbot could be procured to dispatch the Object of his Hatred, his fawning Courtiers would applaud the murderous Principle, and procure a Johnson to record it in all the Bombast of Scottisb Pedantry, as an Achievement worthy of an Alexander, a Cæsar, or a George.—From a puerile Fondness for military Exhibition and Parade, this Royal Baby would be celebrated for the Love of Arms. In short, these Court-Magicians would give to every Vice of their deluded tyrannic Master, the Semblance of Virtue. Perpetual Flattery wou’d teach him to look upon himself as a Proprietor, not as a Father of his People. From this Nation, a sullen, gloomy Pride (except in the varnished Moments of Hypocrisy) would over-cast his Countenance, and diffuse, not a placid Dignity, but an illiberal, haughty, and forbidding Air, over his whole Deportment. Far from being affable and gracious, he would seem to overlook his Subjects, as Beings of an inferior Species. Should Custom ever force him to take some Notice of them, he would do it, like you, Edition: current; Page: [331] Sir, with all the empty Elevation of a Bashaw, who senselessly rates his Dignity according to the Number of his Tails; he would do it, not only with a supercilious Air of Self-distinction, but with manifest Reluctance and Contempt. The least Inclination of the Head to the Authors and Supporters of his Royal Pride, would be thought a most degrading Condescension.

In these Points of liberal Decency and Regard, he would be governed, not by parental Feelings, but, probably, like you, by a Scotch Preceptor, and French Dancing-master.

Instead of viewing his People with the easy Complacence of an affectionate Parent, he would scowl upon them with the haughty and contemptuous Brow of a disdainful Tyrant.

With him, as with you, (ever mindful of the Principles he had imbibed from his virtuous Tutors) his Subjects would pass for Slaves and not for Children.

He had, long ago, perhaps, been taught that his narrow and wicked Purposes could be only answered by the Representatives, and not by the collective Body of his People. Those false Guardians of the public Safety he would first corrupt, and then adore. To them he would basely offer up all the servile, and insidious incense of Hypocrisy, sure that it would be wafted back again to the Throne in the shape of dutiful Addresses, and bountiful Supplies.

He had, perhaps, been taught to mistake those Addresses for the real Sense of his People, and those Supplies for the Sinews of his Government; duped by the Treachery of perfidious Tutors, wicked Ministers, and his own Passions, he would distrust the plain Evidence of his Eyes and Ears. He would be weak enough to ask how it happens that the general Voice drowns that of Hirelings, upon all Public Occasions saluting the Monarch with repeated Hisses, Execrations and Reproach? How comes it that the enraged Populace presume even to spit in the Face of Majesty? Let the haughty, self-willed, cruel, and unfeeling Prince, who is most deservedly held in such Contempt, thank the traitorous Authors and Abetters of his vile Principles, and viler Actions, for his present Infamy, and future Edition: current; Page: [332] Sufferings. By them he has, perhaps, been taught to slight, and he is weak enough to show that he slights, the Sense of his People. He has, perhaps, been led to collect it from the sycophantic Addresses of a corrupt and detestable Majority of a rotten House of Commons. Can human Ears be deaf to the public Voice, crying even in the Streets, and hallowing out the Substance of the Remonstrances and Petitions of the first City in the Kingdom? Has not such a King been dangerously advised, to look upon the Bulk of this Nation as Mob? Has he not been advised by Traytors, who tremble for themselves, (should real Grievances be redressed) not only to reject, but deride the Petitions of the Subject? Do such Advisers counsel upon Revolution-Principles? Does their deluded Sovereign hold his Crown upon any other?—I grow warm—but should such an ideal King (such a royal Log) as I have here fancifully described, ever Reign over a Free People, by what greater Curse can they be visited? May not such a King be truly said to be given them by Heaven in its Wrath?—But I must proceed to delineate further, this Monster of my Brain, under whom every Evil and Oppression of bad Government would be severely felt. Among others, the heaviest and most enormous Taxes would not be the least. These too would be considerably increased by various and ingenious Modes of Profusion and Corruption. Without these endless and unconscionable Exactions, royal Prodigality, and childish Fondness for Toys and Superfluities, could not be gratified. Nay, the rapid Course of Despotism itself (the sole Aim and End of such a Government) must stop. Profligacy and Poverty, Rapacity and wicked Policy, will oblige a King, who governs by such vile Acts, to drain the Vitals of his Kingdom by grievous and superfluous Taxes. His own insatiable Appetites must be gratified, and the craving Mouths of his Dependants and Accomplices must be filled.


[To be continued, and addressed to the present PIOUS King.]

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet Street, opposite Andertons Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankful received.

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To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two Pence Half-Penny.

  • Curst be the Man! What do I say, as tho’,
  • The Wretch was not already so?
  • But curst on let him be, who thinks it brave—
  • Or great his Country to enslave.—
  • Cowley.1


THE CRISIS is at length arrived when Truths are branded with the opprobrious Name of TREASON, and constitutional Resistance to the unjust and bloody Commands of a pious King, and an arbitrary and abandoned Ministry, is called REBELLION—When Men are deemed Rebels who have bravely and honestly refused to plunge their Swords into the Breasts of their loyal Fellow-Subjects—and have Edition: current; Page: [334] had Resolution to oppose the oppressive Measures of an infernal Gang of Parricides.

When Petitions and Remonstrances avail not—When the first City in the World is repulsed, and treated with Contempt by Hirelings and TRAYTORS; when they are denied Access to the Ears of a deluded and weak Sovereign; whilst the once virtuous Throne is surrounded by German Beggars, and Scotch Rebels.—When our Trade and Manufactories are at a Stand; when our Commerce is ruined, our Liberties and Properties invaded, and the industrious Tradesman starving in our Streets.

At such a CRISIS an Appeal lies only to the PEOPLE; they, and they only, are proper to be addressed.—The Right of a King exists no longer than he acts as a King.—With his Honour falls his Power, and with his Justice his Prerogative. We owe him no Obedience as Subjects and Children, when he throws by the Parent and usurps the Tyrant.—When a King breaks his Coronation Oath, his Subjects are absolved from their Oath of Allegiance.

Resistance to such a one (notwithstanding PROCLAMATIONS, fabricated by a Lord Chief Justice) is not Rebellion; but justifiable by the Laws of God and England—It is a Duty we owe to God, Ourselves, and our Posterity.

Rouse, then, my Countrymen, from your Lethargy; let not the Sycophant and Syren Voice of an abandoned Ministry lull you asleep, whilst they forge Fetters, nay rivet them, on the expiring Remains of Liberty.—Revenge your own, and the Wrongs of injured America. Preserve, uncontaminated, those Rights and Privileges which cost your virtuous and brave Ancestors such Seas of Blood, and hand down to your Children, in its original Lustre, the glorious Blessing of English Liberty.

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Drag from behind the Throne, the Traytors who dared to advise those destructive Measures now pursuing in America. In despite of Royalty itself seize them, and bring them to immediate and condign Punishment. Let not the Coronet, or Robe of Crimson, intimidate you; they deserve Respect no longer than the Wearer proves himself worthy of them.—Pull off the one and expose the Weakness of the Head: Draw back the other, and display the Treachery and Wickedness of the Heart.

Present yourselves to his Majesty, not as Petitioners, introduced by Lord Hertford, or some other servile Courtier, but as ENGLISHMEN; as Men who know their Rights, and are resolved to defend them.—Let a deluded Sovereign see there are still some Men, who however ungrateful to his Ears, have a Spirit left to tell him his Faults; who, unawed by a false glare of Royalty, are resolved to tell their Wrongs and seek Redress.

Tell him Treason lurks within his Palace: within those Walls he will find more Traytors than in America; paint her Wrongs, and present her bleeding Sons expiring by the Hands of infatuated and mercenary Soldiers; Represent, if possible, the Distresses of her Inhabitants. The loving Wife mourning with her orphan Children, over the dead Body of their Father.—Parents bewailing the Loss of an only Son, who was sent by Heaven as a Blessing in their declining Years. The Scene grows too affecting; it is too much for human Nature, and Humanity recoils at the Recital.

With a manly Fortitude and a Spirit becoming Britons, impeach those cursed Minions, who advised these wicked and fatal Measures, who now enjoy the Smiles of Royalty, and bask in the Sun-shine of Court Favour.

Bring to this View America, as a ruined and depopulated Nation.—Let him behold in Recital, the Distresses occasioned by the late bloody and inhuman Acts of Parliament.—Tell him the fatal Effects occasioned by his refusing the Petition of the City of London, and his heedlessly signing the Bill for restraining the American Fishery; only to please an abandoned Ministry, who advise the Destruction of Millions by FAMINE and the SWORD, and the Ruin of Kingdoms, that they may share in the Spoil. Nor will they ever want Wretches to carry their Measures into Execution, whilst they can bribe them with the Money of the PEOPLE; Edition: current; Page: [336] such Assassins as Gage, Burgoyne, Clinton, and Howe, will always do any dirty Work Lord Bute, Lord Mansfield, or Lord North shall order them, when they are well paid.

Point to his Majesty the Father, who, before the passing that cruel Bill, earned an industrious and honest Livelihood by the Fishery; now surrounded by a Wife and Children craving for that Bread his Majesty and a corrupt Parliament has robbed them of.—He must, if he has one Spark of Humanity left: acknowledge, that the Americans draw not the Sword without Provocation. If his Soul is not moved with Pity, he is unworthy the Name of a Man; much less (the Title he once declared he gloried in) a BRITON; and it is an Insult on Religion to call him pious or merciful, Epithets which his hireling and pensioned Writers frequently bestow on him.

His Majesty, out of his great Mercy and Piety, lest an innocent Person should suffer, can pardon even hired Ruffians, the Violators of the Right of Election, who were clearly convicted by an honest and impartial Jury.—And will the same pious Sovereign, who could save the Lives of detested Murderers, persevere in the Destruction of the innocent, brave, and loyal Americans.

Can he whose tender Conscience would not permit a Malefactor to be executed; lest he should prove innocent (though there was no reason to believe him so, unless his being hired by Sir William Beauchamp Proctor, and murdering Subjects with a Promise of Pardon, can be construed into Innocence). Can such a Prince consent, I say, (or rather will the People of England suffer him) to punish Thousands, for the Fault of a misguided Rabble. Even Women and Children, nay, even Children unborn, have already been destroyed in the general Slaughter.—Blush, O Prince, at the Cruelties committed, with your Consent, by your Minions and Ministers, and let your Reign no longer be marked in Characters of BLOOD.

My Blood boils at the very Thought! with what Abhorrence and Grief will succeeding Generations read (and Read they must and will, for Truths are not like a judicial Record, to be erased by a Mansfield; and what is engraving in the Hearts of Americans, will be handed down to Edition: current; Page: [337] Posterity with every cruel Circumstance) and in the black Annals of our Time, learn that this and more, was acted under, and by the Command of George the Third.

Is Slavery become less Hateful under a Prince of the House of Brunswick, than it was during the Reign of a Stuart; or are we less Virtuous and fond of Liberty, than our glorious Forefathers; who brought to the Block, the Tyrant Charles the First? are we not the Descendants of those Men, who brought about the last happy and glorious Revolution? I call upon you NOW, my brave Countrymen, in the Name of those Ancestors, to defend and resist, even till you Perish, any TYRANT who shall offer to trample upon the Laws which he is bound, and was solemnly sworn to preserve.

Proclaim, O my Countrymen, in the Ears of Majesty (which have long been Strangers to Truth) “These are thy Doings, misguided Prince, thy Laws, like those of Draco,2 are written not with INK, but in BLOOD. Repent ere it is too late, and hearken to the Advice of your faithful Subjects and real Friends, not to an abandoned Ministry, who are interested to SEDUCE you, lest by attending to Truths, you should find out their TREASONS. Dismiss the Traitors from your Confidence, and give them up to justice.—Be persuaded to follow the Inclinations of your People, and fulfill the solemn and sacred Oath you took at your Coronation.—It still is though it will not be so long in your Power to reconcile yourself to America, by an immediate Redress of their Grievances you may gain their Affections for ever; but should you still persevere in oppressive, cruel, and bloody Measures; the Time perhaps, is not far distant, (though Heaven retard the Hour) when the Sword of Liberty which is now drawn in America, will be unsheathed in England.

At that dreadful Period, a deluded King will call in vain for Assistance from Lord Mansfield, Bute, or their Instrument North and his Gang.— Edition: current; Page: [338] The whole infernal Crew, conscious of their Crimes, will hide themselves, if possible from the Vengeance of a justly enraged Nation; put an End to their detested Lives by SUICIDE; or be brought to the SCAFFOLD to the great Joy and Happiness of every true Friend to his King and Country in England and America.


Instructions from the FREEHOLDERS of the COUNTY of Middlesex, to the Right Honourable JOHN WILKES and JOHN GLYNN, Esquires, KNIGHTS of the SHIRE for the COUNTY of MIDDLESEX.4

“WE, the Freeholders of the County of Middlesex; summoned here by Public Advertisement of the Sheriff of this County, acknowledge our Approbation and grateful Sense of your Conduct as our Representatives, during the last Session of Parliament; and though we have no Reason to doubt your steady Perseverance in the true Interest of your Country, yet we think it our indispensable Duty to acquaint you with our Sentiments at the present awful Crisis, big with the Fate of this great Empire, and the Happiness, Glory, and Prosperity, of the whole People.

“We behold, with all the Horror and Grief natural to a Free People, the fatal Stab given to our excellent Constitution, by a Majority of the last Edition: current; Page: [339] VENAL Parliament, whereby the most sacred and unalienable Right of the Freeholders of this County, the Right of Election, was in the most impious Manner wrested from the Electors, and assumed by the Elected, who placed a Person as our Representative in Parliament, contrary to the Sense and Will of the County, expressed by a great Majority of legal Votes, thereby establishing a PRECEDENT of the most dangerous Tendency to the Rights of all the Electors of Great Britain; which Injury has been again confirmed, by the Malice of our inveterate Enemies, in the present Parliament (chosen by Surprize under a National Delusion) suffering that Vote to appear in their Journals, a standing Record of the INJUSTICE, VENALITY, and CORRUPTION of their Predecessors.

“We are called upon to redouble our Attention and Zeal for the Defence and Preservation of ALL our constitutional Rights, from seeing the iron Hand of Oppression extended to our Fellow-Subjects on the other Side of the Atlantic; POPERY, that Bane of civil and religious Liberty, established in an Extent of Country infinitely larger than all our Possessions in Europe, thereby arming, as it were, many of our Fellow-Subjects with the CRUCIFIX in one Hand and a DAGGER in the other, against our Protestant Brethren; a POPISH BISHOP appointed, and the greatest Comfort and Encouragement given to the Clergy of that Church, while the Pastors of our own pure and excellent Faith, are suffered to remain without Support or Provision, but what ROMISH Priests and ROMISH Counsels shall deign to afford them; other cruel and oppressive Acts passed against our Fellow-Subjects in AMERICA, wholly repugnant to the ancient, just, and generous Proceedings of British Councils and British Assemblies, destructive of that Glory of the ENGLISH Law, the Trial by Jury, and many other undoubted Rights and Privileges of English Subjects; in Violation of Charters and royal Covenants of the most solemn Nature, which Acts and Oppressions, under the Influence of the present Ministers, have been productive of a most impolitic, unnatural, cruel, and destructive CIVIL WAR, against our suffering and much injured Fellow-Subjects in America.

“We lament as a commercial People, the inevitable Injuries that must be sustained by the Loss of a most valuable Branch of our Commerce, Edition: current; Page: [340] the decay of Trade and Manufactures, and consequent Distress of the industrious Poor.

“To remedy all these Evils, the melancholy Experience of past Times evincing, how insufficient the removal of a Ministry, while their Maxims and Views are entailed upon the Government. We desire that you will not only continue strenuously to oppose them, but endeavour to procure us such constitutional Security, by shortening the Duration of Parliaments, and enacting such other Laws as may prevent the Nation from suffering by the like Errors and Iniquities for the future.

“And we instruct you to exert yourselves in procuring that Vote of the late House of Commons to be rescinded, which in the most injurious and unconditional Manner, deprived the Freeholders of this County, of their undoubted Right of Election.

“We also instruct you, to forward an enquiry into the Expenditure of the Public Treasure, so peculiarly necessary at this Time, and in a Nation burdened with Taxes, and oppressed with Debts; that you will not suffer the People to be imposed on by the flimsy Artifices of a Minister pretending to lessen, while he is, in reality, encreasing the Public Burthen.

“Should any additional Land-Tax, or new Imposts be proposed, in the ensuing Session, we expect that you will not assent to them without a previous Redress of Grievances; and that you will strenuously oppose all Votes of Credit or taking any Foreign Troops into the Pay of Great Britain unless another Attempt should be made by TORIES and JACOBITES, against his Majesty’s Person, Family, or Government.

“The state of the Navy, the great Bulwark, Safety, and Protection, of the Commerce of this Nation demands, and we hope, will engage your serious Attention; and that you will enquire by what fatal Mismanagement and corrupt Influence, after such immense Sums have been voted during a Peace-establishment, that it is in its present deplorable Condition.

“We particularly instruct you to exert yourselves in preventing the further effusion of the BLOOD of our innocent Fellow-Subjects in America, and to put a speedy end to the present-unnatural and ruinous CIVIL WAR.

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“We also desire you to use your unwearied Endeavours to assist and support the Representatives of the City of London, for obtaining a repeal of every obnoxious and unconstitutional Act, and in bringing to the Justice of their Country, the Advisers of such nefarious Measures, as have been adopted during the last Fourteen Years, tending to SUBVERT the Constitution of this Country, and which we are convinced will very soon effect the Ruin and Destruction of the British Empire.”

No sooner were they Read, than Mr. Justice Pell with great dignity arose, and declaring, “That as he could not separate the STRAW from the WHEAT, he should object to every one of the Instructions.”

The Motion for instructing the Members was carried, like every other Motion, in behalf of Public Liberty, by a prodigious Majority. It was then moved, “That a Letter should be addressed from the Freeholders of Middlesex to those of Great Britain.” Objected to by Mr. Justice Pell, on the Principle “That it was sounding the Trumpet of Sedition throughout the Camp of Israel.” Mr. Staples, the Lighterman objected to the Motion on a Ground not quite so Scriptural; he said, “It would be making fast the Chains of Tyranny.” Mr. Rutson echoed the Denunciation of a PROTEST. The Letter, however, was read, and the Motion “That it be addressed to the Freeholders of Great-Britain” passed by an immense Majority. The Letter is verbatim as follows:”


“The perilous Situation of public Affairs, and the Calamities which threaten the whole Empire, are the Reasons, and, we hope, will be a sufficient Apology for our addressing you.

“The Vote of the late House of Commons, by which a Representative was forced upon us, to the immediate Violation of our Rights, and the eventual Injury of those of all the Electors in the Kingdom, remains Edition: current; Page: [342] yet on Record. It remains as a Precedent against the most sacred and fundamental Franchise of the People, to authorise the same Violence, by Ministers, as ARBITRARY and Representatives as CORRUPT.

“We trust, Gentlemen, that you will not cease to co-operate with us, till that dangerous and shameful Record be condemned and done away, in the most solemn and effectual Manner.

“The present state of America is such, as ought to give the deepest Alarm and Concern to every Man, who regards the Rights of human Nature, the Liberties of Englishmen, and the Happiness and Safety of the whole Empire. The arbitrary and inhuman Conduct of the present Administration, has driven our most affectionate American Fellow-Subjects into Despair and Resistance. Seven Years Supplication for a Redress of their Grievances, has been answered by AN ARMY to enforce them. Their Petition last Year to the King, implored—Peace, Liberty, and Safety. In Return they received Acts of the most inhuman Restraints; and open Hostilities, in the Desolation of their Country, the Destruction of their People, and the Conflagration of their Towns. They have again besought his Majesty,” in a late humble Petition, “to stop the further Effusion of Blood; and to direct some Mode by which he would be pleased to receive the united Proofs of their Devotion, as most dutiful Subjects, and most affectionate Colonists.” They declare their most “ardent Desire that the former Harmony between them and the Parent-State, may be established upon the most lasting Foundation.” They expressly declare they do not “request such a Reconciliation as may be, in any Manner inconsistent with the DIGNITY or WELFARE of this Country.” We cannot conceive what can be offered, fairer, or fuller, on their Part.

“But the Ministry, it seems, have advised his Majesty to give this Petition no Answer; and thereby to deprive the Petitioners of every Hope of Redress and Reconciliation. They are farther making the most open and extensive Preparations for War. Even Roman Catholics are allured and incited to take up Arms against their Protestant Fellow-subjects. Thus we see these most pernicious Measures, prosecuted by the worst and most dangerous Means.

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“The immediate Injury of such a War to our Commerce and Manufactures,—the Consequence of that to the Produce of the Land—the additional Taxes necessary for such distant and expensive Operations, must sink this unhappy Country, already over-burthened with the enormity of her Debt, into unavoidable Ruin. Upon the LAND must the whole Expence ultimately fall. Upon the LANDHOLDERS, then, it is especially incumbent to use their utmost Influence in stopping the Course of this unnatural and fatal War.

“The Americans have repeatedly appealed to the Justice and Humanity of their Fellow-subjects in Great-Britain. We hope such an Appeal will never be made in vain. We lament the Fate of those brave British Soldiers who have been sacrificed in so inglorious and hateful a Contest. We are persuaded our Fellow-subjects in America, are contending in the Cause of Liberty; and are cruelly oppressed. We will never, willingly, aid in urging the Oppression, or trampling upon the Rights of any Part of the Dominions. We cannot see any probable Consequence from the Prosecution of this ministerial War, but Misery, Shame, and Ruin to the whole Empire.

“Upon these Principles we have instructed our Representatives in Parliament; upon these Principles, Gentlemen, we wish for your Co-operation, in establishing Liberty, Peace, and Harmony through all his Majesty’s Dominions.”

Printed and published for the Author’s by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet Street, opposite Andertons Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

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To be continued Weekly.

[Price Two Pence Half-penny.

  • —Tu ME etiam, Nebulo, ludificabere?
  • Terent.1
  • Shall Dunning by revolt ensure renown,
  • And Bute not take away his silken Gown?
  • Anonym.2

SINCE every Truth is now considered, by the King’s Friends, as a Libel upon Government, I do not remember ever to have seen a truer, and, consequently, a more atrocious Libel than that which was lately uttered by Mr. Dunning in his Charge, as Recorder, to the Grand Jury at the general Gaol Delivery in the City of Bristol on the 5th of September. Before I proceed further, I think it right to apprize Edition: current; Page: [346] my Readers that I intend to display much Star-Chamber Learning in this Paper, by Way of preparing them for what they may soon expect; a laudable Exertion of the united Abilities of Administration to construe all Publications founded in Truth into Libels against Government, and to punish them accordingly.

They will want no Juries. They will have a Star-Chamber.—The Star-Chamber was a motley Kind of Court, like those in Scotland, compounded of Law and Equity, (or, at least, what they called Law and Equity) where a Board of Inquisitors came, predetermined, in the double Capacity of Judge and Jury.—3

Now, before such Judges, Libel, or not Libel, is a Question depending upon Construction only. I will shew my Readers, immediately, the Mode of Interpretation in such Cases. For that Purpose I shall exhibit Part of the Recorder of Bristol’s Speech by Way of Specimen.—That Gentleman told the Grand Jury, that it had always been his Custom (and a laudable one it is) to inform them of any Acts of the previous Session of Parliament, which related to the Civil Liberties of the People, or to the Administration of Justice. But he observed, most truly, and, therefore, most libellously (for Truth, it seems, is the greatest Aggravation Edition: current; Page: [347] of a Libel) that the Proceedings of the late Session furnished no such Information; Business of a very different Nature (meaning the late American business) having engrossed the Attention of the Legislature.—He then expresses, with the most pathetic Sensibility, his first Wish to be the Union of the British Empire; that it might, once more be happy and flourishing; and declares the Crime of that Person who indulges a contrary Wish to be infinitely more heinous than any that stained the Calender then before him.

This Gentleman’s Observations are just, and his Assertions true; but for that very Reason a Court of Star-Chamber must condemn him.

Truths make the strongest and most lasting Impression upon the People, and are, therefore, held in the greatest Detestation by the present Ministry. To them every Man who thinks is an obnoxious Subject; but the Hand that writes must be disabled. Under the Sway of a Bute and a Mansfield, Information is no less criminal than Resistance. All Freedom of Speech and Pen will shortly be condemned by Proclamation, and suppressed by Inquisition.

The King’s Friends (as they call themselves) cannot do their Duty if they omit to censure, resent, and punish the late opprobrious Behaviour of the Recorder of Bristol; a Man whom they hate, with great Reason, for his free Spirit, Abilities, Integrity, Discernment, Inflexibility, and public Virtue; and, therefore most righteously, displaced him as Solicitor General, to make Way for one who would suit their Purposes. Lord Bute did right—he smelt a Rat.—The Name of Junius made him start.—The Man who dares to publish free and virtuous Sentiments, in Times like these, who is too proud and stubborn to receive either Insults, Bribes, or Orders from the Minister, deserves to wear the King’s Gown no longer. Let him be stripped of his silk Robe, and, to his immortal Honour, let him wear Shalloon for Life; but let him not presume to vent his galling Truths in public. Shall he be suffered to spread Jealousies and Discontents among the People, to play the Constitutionalist before a Grand Jury; to scatter malignant Hints and seditious Insinuations throughout a City, and to lead Men (who might otherwise be tame and quiet) into political-Inquiries and national Resentments? Can a Mansfield be blind to Edition: current; Page: [348] such Audacity as this? Is the great inquisitor of the Nation slumbering? Have the mouldy Precedents of his favourite Court of Star-Chamber, no Pains, no Penalties, no Maims in Store for such Offences? When the Heads of a virtuous Administration are plotting against the Liberties of the Press, shall Freedom of Speech, or Pen be allowed to any but the pensioned Friends of Government your Johnsons, Maduits, Shebbears, and Kellys?

This Recorder is not only a free Speaker, but he is suspected of being a free Writer, and shall he not be punished in those Members which offend? Ought he not to be examined upon Interrogatories? If he should (like Bingley) contumaciously refuse to accuse himself, let such Refusal be taken for full Proof against him, and let his guilty Hand and Tongue pay the Forfeit of his Temerity. This Procedure has been held just and legal in Reigns no less virtuous and constitutional than the present; nor can Lord Bute’s System of Government be supported, unless this summary Mode of Trial is restored.4

If Americans have no Right to be tried by Juries, no more have the other Subjects of Great Britain. Juries are said to be constitutional, but they are dangerous. They are no Friends to Government. They listen too much to Conscience. They know they have an undoubted Right to judge of Law as well as Fact, and that every Judge is a Liar and a Knave who tells them to the contrary, and dares to dictate, controul and overbear, when it is his Province only, to assist and inform.5 How can Juries swallow the ministerial Doctrine of our Day? Let them be at once abolished.—With Edition: current; Page: [349] the present Administration whatever is, is right: A glorious Maxim!—pregnant with unerring Justice. The great Sir Thomas Filmer has wrote a Volume in its Praise.6

The conscientious, pious, amiable and God-like Family of the Stuarts (to whose Principles our Ministry most religiously adhere) pluming themselves; on their manifest Vicegerency under God, did singular Honour to this Maxim, by adopting it as their great Rule of Government. It made that divine Being, Charles the First, a blessed Martyr, and will, probably, beatify and canonize more anointed Fools. Such short-sighted Dupes of wicked and designing Ministers and Friends, have ever found a Way to Heaven through Inquisitions, Massacres, Tyranny, and Blood. Those who are Friends to the People are ever treated as Enemies to such a Government, and have generally been attempted either by private Assassination or judicial Iniquity. I shall not, therefore despair of seeing this free speaking Recorder brought to the Bar of the Inquisitor General of England.

If Truth makes a Libel more criminal, (as every Star-Chamber-Lawyer from Coke to Mansfield has declared) can Thurloe want sufficient Matter for an Information against Mr. Dunning? Will not our Sollicitor General (our little Scotch Lord Chancellor in Embryo) be ingenious in supplying necessary Inuendoes and bold Averments, which are the Quintessence of such State-Proceedings? Can any Aspersion upon the great Council of the Nation (in whose Wisdom our Sovereign has so repeatedly declared he would confide) be more gross and virulent, and, what is worse, more true, than that which Mr. Dunning has thrown out upon it? Has not this Great Council, has not the Privy Council, has not our most pious King, has not the great Lord Bute himself (that infallible Consistory of George’s Soul) shewn of late the noblest Instances of Perseverance? Does any human Virtue bid so fair for the Promotion of Civil Liberty and Justice, as tenacious and obdurate Steadiness?—What if no Acts have passed, relating to Liberty and Justice, in the late Session of Edition: current; Page: [350] Parliament, has not that Session nobly avowed supported and persisted in all the salutary Provisions made before for the Advancement, Protection and Prosperity of Religion, Commerce, the Lives, Liberties and Properties, nay, for the Preservation and lasting Happiness (in Heaven) of all his Majesty’s dissatisfied petitioning Subjects in America? And shall Government be upbraided, or discouraged, because a little Recorder of a little Corporation dares to arraign the Assiduity, Vigilance, Justice, and Attention of the late Session of our incorrupt Parliament? Does this little Man presume to be wiser than the whole legislative Body?—

What contributes more to the Preservation of Civil Liberty, than to suppress Licentiousness? And what Licentiousness is so great as that of Subjects who shall dare to meet, consult, deliberate, and at last, to act in Defence of themselves, and their pretended Interests, against the Proprietors of their Liberties, Lives and Fortunes? Shall a Set of Men, who have thrown themselves under the Protection of the Crown, from whose Grace and Benignity they received a Charter in their Infancy, presume to withstand their Owner’s Will? Has not this modest, patriotic Doctor Johnson most learnedly and convincingly amplified, expounded and explained, stipulated Subjection into passive Obedience, rational Subordination into real Slavery? And durst any loyal Subject dispute the Doctrine and Authority of his magesterial Goose-quill?—So much for Civil Liberty.—As to the Administration of Justice, can that be more effectually provided for than by the Prevention of political Injustice? And what can be more unjust than that those whom the wisdom of the Great Council of this Nation has branded as Rebels should escape Famine, Sword and Gibbet? What could be wiser and more just than to call in the Aid even of Famine, in such a righteous Cause? What more laudable than the abolishing Trials by Jury in Cases of meum and tuum, in such a detested Country? What more equitable than the transporting such traytorous Children hither, where they will be sure to find a Judge, a Jury, and a Halter ready for them?—But the most obnoxious and severest Insinuations against the State, are couched under the Recorder’s next Observation, that “Business of a very different Nature from the Civil Liberties of the People, or the Administration of Public Justice had engrossed the Attention of the last Session”—

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Now what is so contrary to its natural Civil Liberty, as established Slavery, what so foreign to the Administration of Justice, as the promotion of Corruption, Oppression, and Iniquity? These may be truly said to be Businesses of a very different Nature from those which in all well-governed States, engross the perpetual Attention of a good Prince and a wise Legislature. Such a Prince and such a Legislature would endeavour to multiply the Benefits and mitigate the Sufferings of the People. They would have no Resentments to gratify, no Vices to indulge, no Dependants to support, no Confederates to bribe, no private Ends to serve, no Wish but what tends to the Welfare, the Honour, the Happiness and Preservation of the Realm and its Dominions. But, by saying that Business of a different Nature employs the Thoughts of Government, what does this Recorder mean, but that the Administration must be wicked which Promotes, the Legislature corrupt and venal that Assists, the People stupid who endure, and the Sovereign more Fortunate, than he deserves, who does not Suffer for so gross an abuse of delegated Power.

Such Insinuations as these, are fit for the Consideration of a Court of Star-Chamber.—But this keen Libeller, this Apostate to a Pious King, this Deserter of a virtuous Administration, this zealous Opponent of an incorrupt Majority, has presumptuously formed a Wish for the Happiness, the Prosperity of America in a lasting Union with Great Britain.

Does he remember that the great Lord Bute has declared by his Amanuensis Doctor Johnson, that whoever wishes well to America, is a Traytor?

Does he not know that our Sovereign has set his Face against America? That our all-wise and almighty Majority are determined to gratify the Rage of disgusted Royalty? That the Extinction of that detested Race of Subjects is determined? Who then shall dare to wish for an happy Union with that devoted Territory, which is doomed to Desolation. Such a Trayterous Wish is equal to a Trayterous Act, and deserves no less a Punishment.

But our wild Recorder stops not here; in a loose of frantic Zeal, he proceeds to rank the Three Great Estates of this Kingdom, with the worst of Felons; asperses and calumniates the whole virtuous Gang, from Bute to Jerry Dyson. He involves them with Pick-Pockets, Cut-throats, and Edition: current; Page: [352] Assassins. Nay, I suspect by his using the Word (Person) in the singular Number, that he points at the Master-Butcher.—This is ungenerous. He, (poor Man) is but a mere Puppet, and is moved upon the Wires of his two Scotch Governors.

Mr. Recorder, to enflame the Minds of the Public, insinuates farther, that “the End of this American Business cannot be clearly seen.”—But here I suspect him of the most artful Dissimulation for some secret and pernicious Purposes; for every Man may see the End of this Business; who knows the Temper and Fortitude of the Americans better than Lord Sandwich, or Lord Denbigh? and reflects that Virtue and Magnimity always go together and are invincible.

This Recorder then, does not scruple to declare that he intends still to give his Opinion firmly on all Questions relating to America.—Upon this, a late made Baron may remark, that Mr. Dunning does not intend to barter his Seat in the House of Commons, for a Fur-gown, or to give up the National Interest, and his own Honour, for a larger Perriwig.—But the higher Monkies climb—the Reader knows the rest.

Let me not forget the grossest of all this Recorder’s Insults: it is well known, and felt, that the Government, abetted by the wise Council of this Nation, have thought fit to declare themselves Enemies to America; they have thought fit to withdraw their Protection from Her; and have bravely and justly resolved by all Means, Human, and Inhuman, to exterminate those Rebels: and shall this puny Gownsman dare to proscribe so illustrious, so august a Body as King, Lords and Commons, and hold up a Calendar of Thieves and Murderers as their Betters? Unparralleld Assurance! audacious Insolence! unpardonable Contempt!—But let this daring little Bully of a King’s Bench Bar, mark and tremble at the End of these licentious Outrages against a pious King, an upright Parliament, a righteous and unspotted Administration, and a godlike Thane, the great and first Mover of our political Sphere of Government.

Let every Anti-Revolutionist rejoice that the great and glorious Day of Reformation is at Hand, when the now-teeming Press shall be Free to none but Johnson and his Subalterns; when literary Publications from every other Quarter shall be supervised and punished under a new constitutional Edition: current; Page: [353] Inquisition; when the Tongues of perjured Revolutionists shall be rooted out, and the impious Hands that spread their Doctrines, shall be severed; when more Writing shall (as it was in Sidney’s Case) be again pronounced Acting; when Petitioning shall be Death, and lifting up a suppliant Eye towards the Throne, shall be punished as an High Crime and Misdemeanor.—Then shall the glorious Suns of Bute and Mansfield, break forth in Scottish Splendour, and eclipse the puny Majesty of England; then shall rebellious America be abandoned to her Fate; no more protected and sustained by her affectionate and indulging Parent; but spurned, with Indignation and Contempt, as an odious Prodigy of that monstrous and enormous Virtue, which is not to be subdued by Luxury, Corruption, Perfidy, Treachery, Famine, Ministerial Assassination, royal Perseverance, or a Breach of Magna Charta and the great Compact between King and People.


asterisksThe Authors of the CRISIS present their respectful Compliments to Cas

ca, and beg he will excuse their not having printed some of his Words which were scored for italic in that Character:—They have a new Font of the various Sorts of Letter nearly finished, when they will be able to comply with the particular Requests of Casca and their numerous Correspondents.—The Authors hope to hear from Casca soon.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [354] Edition: current; Page: [355]


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[Price Two Pence Half-penny.


Continued from Number XXXVI.


To the KING.

SUCH a King would occasion innumerable Distresses to his People, but feel none. The greatest he could be apprehensive of, and the only one he would regard, would be a deficiency of Votes. Perhaps a TEST, or ASSOCIATION, on the side of Liberty, might alarm him for a Moment, but Inequity is ever fruitful in Expedients. One Parliament may easily be dissolved, and another smuggled by surprize So many Years are now elapsed since the Revolution, that its Principles are almost forgot. They are showy in Theory, but obsolete in Practice. Besides, a hopeful Majority may always be obtained by multiplying Placemen, Pensioners, and even Tax gatherers. An honest Parliament is the Representative and Servant of a free People, a corrupt Parliament is the Creature and Slave of a foolish King and a knavish Minister. This is Edition: current; Page: [356] governing not by Policy, but by Stratagem. Hence it comes that such a Prince need only ask and have. The Wretches who form this patriotic Majority, and give away the public Treasure thus profusely, share a Part, proportioned to their Merits in the public Plunder. This is not a System like that formed at the glorious Revolution, which introduced the present Family, from a contemptible Electorate, to the noblest Empire in the Universe, but it is such a one as originated under that great Corruptor and vile Minister (Sir Robert Walpole) and has shot up lately into most luxuriant Infamy, under the fostering Hand of Bute. It is a System under which the Prodigalities, Vices, Crimes, and Tyrannies of a foolish King will hourly increase. Till this raging Pestilence (Corruption) can be subdued, it will be the mutual and perpetual Interest of the faithless Majority to grant, and of the profligate Sovereign to remunerate the Benevolence and dutiful Attachment of his Myrmidons. Surely such a Pestilence as this in any State is far more dangerous in its Consequences than that among the Horned Cattle, which was once lamented with a fatherly Concern, at a Time when a great City petitioned, and exerted all it’s Zeal to destroy (among other obnoxious Pests) that many headed Monster Corruption. The horned Cattle was then a happy Thought, suggested by some sly Court Sycophant (perhaps a Mansfield) in derision, and indecently adopted by his sneering Master. The Allusion (like the Wit) was Low and Vulgar, fit only for the Mouths of the lowest Rabble. As the first Citizens in the Universe were buffooned under this unmanly, coarse Allusion, it is to be wished that Firebrands had been fastened to the Horns of that tame Herd, whose greatest Offence was an humble, constitutional, and just Supplication to the Throne.

These Horned Cattle (my Lord Mansfield) yielded daily Nourishment and Supplies to the Wants, Superfluities, Vices, and Profusion, of all the royal ministerial pensioned, placed, and bribed Blood-suckers of an oppressed and injured Nation. At the same Time, I must confess, it is an Instance of the greatest Condescension and Humility in your Lordships (whose Duty it is to bear the Standard of Liberty before the People to submit to be the first Buffoon in a sycophantic Drawing-Room.) From this Disgression I return, and must observe Edition: current; Page: [357] that when Grants are in any State too easily obtained by a foolish and profuse Prince, from a venal and corrupt Majority, upon Grounds hardly Colourable, (without a due inquiry into the real Applications of so much Treasure) immense yearly Revenues will be squandered in royal Baubles, courtly Superfluities, and national Corruption. Nor will these stipulated Largesses be sufficient of themselves, but further supplemental Supplies will modestly be asked, and most dutifully granted to eke out the small annual Revenue of near a Million, as often as that enormous Sum proves too scanty to answer the frugal, pious, munificent, and wise Purposes of a Monarch, whose Magnificence, Oeconomy, and Zeal for the Happiness and Prosperity of Himself, his Minions, and his People may be notorious.

A Revenue less than one Million was more than sufficient to defray all the Expences of the Crown, the Fleet, and the Army, in the Days of the renowned Elizabeth, embarrassed as she was both at home and abroad. At a far less Expence did that illustrious Princess support her Kingdom’s Honour, and her own Magnificence and Splendor, in the midst of the most formidable Attack that was ever made upon this Kingdom; not against the puffing Menaces of a few French flat-bottomed Boats, but against a real approaching Invasion of the whole Power of Spain with her invincible Armada. At that Period, the Hand of Providence was seen, but the Hand of Wisdom, Prudence, and true Patriotism was not idle. At that Period it pleased Heaven to give Understanding to the Sovereign, Abilities and Integrity to the Ministry, and Virtue to the Parliament. The amiable, revered, and beloved Sovereign of that Day, saw with her own Eyes, and heard with her own Ears. She had Sensibility, Spirit, Fortitude, true Magnanimity and Discretion. She had Penetration and Sagacity. Her Piety, like her Courage, was unaffected: She disdained Hypocrisy, and upon all important Occasions she spoke and acted from an upright Heart. In her Reign (and it is not to be equaled in our Annals) the public Treasure was not lavished, but applied. It brought back Honour, Peace, Security and Freedom to the Nation. In worse Reigns, and under worse Administrations, it has been, and will continue to be, pusillanimously and treacherously applied, to purchase Infamy abroad, and Slavery at Edition: current; Page: [358] home. In every Reign the continual and repeated Cravings of royal Dissipation and Corruption, ought to be suppressed. This Evil grows by feeding, and will at last prey upon the exhausted Vitals of an expiring Country. A weak and wicked Prince, makes the wealth of his Kingdom, an Object of his Thoughts, no farther than it serves to supply his insatiable childish Appetites, or tyrannical Designs. Were the Treasures of a Nation inexhaustible, and the dispensing Hand ever profuse, such a Cut-purse of the Realm, such a Royal Prodigal, would in six Months sink an imperial Revenue to a Farthing, and still remain in Debt to the meanest of his Tradesmen and Domestics. At the same Time (so inconsistent is the Spirit of Profusion with pretended Æconomy) that the Current of all laudable Hospitality would be stopped in the very Kitchen of the Royal Palace; where even the menial Servants would stinted to Board-Wages, and the Houshold Expences of a great Monarch pitifully curtailed to that of a Pound of Bread and an Inch of Candle. Under this Mask of domestic Prudence and Frugality, a venal and corrupt Set of Wretches (to whom the public Honour, the public Treasure, and the public Freedom were entrusted) would be exorbitantly bribed by this excellent Oeconomist, with the Money of the Nation, to betray their Masters. A patriot King would exert his Talent of Oeconomy in Matters of greater Honour and Importance. Instead of pinching the Bellies of his poor Domestics, he would save, not to dishonour, but to aggrandize the Nation. He would be sparing in all unnecessary Impositions upon his Subjects. Safe in their Affections, his Fears would not suggest to him the Necessity of a most expensive, useless, and unconstitutional standing Army. That it is immensely expensive the annual Estimates will evince. When I call it useless, no wise Man will affect Surprise till he has heard the following Questions fairly answered,—In an Island can such an Army be kept up against foreign Enemies?—No.—Islanders can fear none whilst their Marine is attended to. Let foreign, continental Powers be ever so ambitious, let them combine, unite and threaten; yet how can they invade? The Ballance of Power (so idly talked of by crafty Politicians) is to be kept, not by a tyrannic standing Army; but by a respectable Navy only.—Is this Army maintained for Shew and for Edition: current; Page: [359] Reviews? Hardly—turning, or making Buttons would be an Amusement less expensive to the Kingdom. But, is it maintained against the People? The most audacious Tyrant, or most abandoned Minister, would tremble to affirm it. Yet this, alas! is the real Truth.—It may be useful to protect an odious Sovereign and his corrupt Adherents against the Cries of Justice and an injured Nation. As soon as Corruption was found necessary for the Support of the political System, standing Armies were embodied, to maintain if possible, by Force, what Oppression and Tyranny must loose, I mean the Submission of an insulted People. Their Affections, in our new World of Politics, are not regarded. Is this a constitutional Army? No.—The national Militia is the only one, and the only one that ought to be endured in this Kingdom.—We have a national Militia, says my Lord North, by an Act passed in the Reign of his present patriotic Majesty.—It is true, my Lord, but this Act passed, not with the Wishes of Ministry; it was (in the military Phrase,) a March stolen upon them. I refer to your Lordship’s Recollection for the History and Truth of what I now assert. The Digression would be long, and foreign to my present Purpose, or I would give the History of this Piece of patriotic Condescension in the Ministry. Another Opportunity may disclose it, together with some valuable Anecdotes, and interesting Remarks upon the Subject.—

It is now Time that I should pursue my ideal Scetch of a foolish King. Imperious, ignorant, self-willed, and self-sufficient, no wise and honest Counsellor would approach him. His Weakness would shut up every Avenue to good Advice. He would listen only to that fawning Herd who might, probably, have the unparalled Impudence to embody themselves under the arrogant Appellation of the King’s Friends, (a new Order of Sycophants) as if the Wiser and honester Part of the Nation were his Enemies. The Advice of such Men alone would be relished, as most grateful to his vitiated Appetites. Hence would arise real Grievances at home and in his Colonies. If the injured and oppressed Subjects remonstrated in an humble, constitutional Manner, they would be derided; if they received the Chains and Badges of their Slavery with any Shew of Manhood and Resistance, they would Edition: current; Page: [360] be treated as factious and rebellious. Such a Sovereign would not relieve, conciliate and appease—No—He would still oppress, irritate, insult, and, at last, endeavour to exterminate them. This would be his pious and parental Conduct in his Colonies.—At home, his Myrmidons, his mercenary standing Army, would surround his Throne.—These, instead of the constitutional Civil Power, would be employed, under a needless Pretence, of assisting the Civil Magistrates in the Execution of the Laws; and, it is most probable, that these military Assistants would be guilty of military Murders. I can easily suppose some Parts of the Army (as well as of the Senate) not quite free from Infection in so corrupt a Reign. What if a simple Youth, drawn by indiscreet Curiosity, to approach too near the Scene of Confusion and Riot (which the unconstitutional Appearance of the Military, instead of Civil Powers had occasioned) should be singled out, pursued and butchered, though defenceless and unarmed? Let us suppose (for such a Case has happened) that two military Scotch Ruffians most maliciously pursued this unarmed Straggler. till he had taken Shelter in a Hovel, where, defenceless as he was, he might have been taken without a Blow, and brought to Justice, if culpable. Instead of seizing him (for he was inclosed, and the Door of the Hovel shut) these two military Executioners of our Laws perforated him most inhumanly in several Places with Bayonets fixed, till the unhappy Youth fell dead at their Feet, a Victim to the Janissaries of a standing Army. Can it be imagined that a wise or Christian Prince could not only approve, but applaud such a Massacre as this? Ought the royal Thanks to be publicly given to the commanding Officer in such a Scene? Ought the murderous Villains themselves to have the Means of an Escape provided for them? Ought Justice itself to be tampered with in their Favour? Ought such Cut-throats to be pensioned for their good Services? Ought there to have been a Sham-trial of two Persons who did not actually commit, but were Accessaries to the Murder, whilst the real Murderers were conveyed away privately? Ought a Judge to have laboured the Acquittal of these guilty Accessaries, knowing and well knowing, that the Principals had escaped? Ought a chief Justice of England to connive at such iniquity? Ought a Sovereign to patronize, Edition: current; Page: [361] protect and reward it? Ought he to go still further, and give formal Thanks to the Commander of this Atchievement so honourable to the British Arms? What could a NERO or a DOMITIAN do worse?1


[To be continued, Addressed to his PIOUS Majesty George III.]

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [362] Edition: current; Page: [363]


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[Price Two Pence Half-penny.

An Ideal SCETCH of a FOOLISH KING finished.

Continued from the last Number.


To the KING.

THUS fall by standing Armies, innocent Individuals unrevenged?—Thus, and only thus, can they be useful—to a wicked Administration, and a Tyrant. In such a Scene as I have just supposed, the most pusillanimous Prince (without half the Spirit of his Mother) may stab by Proxy. In such a Reign neither Liberty, Property, nor Life, are safe. Religion (though he has sworn at the Altar to maintain and defend it is as little so. Suppose a Foolish King (so tender of the Blood of his Subjects) should still, through the Patience and long sufferance of his People, remain unshaken in his Throne; could it be adviseable for him to lay himself still more open to the just Resentment of a brave, a spirited, and feeling People? Would he be wise (though he practised all the outward forms of sanctimonious Piety in his Palace) to Edition: current; Page: [364] risque a change of the established Religion in any part of his Dominions? Could any political Pretences reconcile such a Step as this, either to his People or his Conscience? Could such a rash Attempt be considered in any other Light than as a daring Prelude to a more extensive and decisive Stroke? Suppose such a Prince had not the Capacity to plan, but only give his dumb Assent to such a Scheme, would he be less culpable than the other Parts of a corrupt designing, treacherous Legislature, who ventured to enact it? Might not such a foolish, such a wicked King, be truly said to be at the Head of a Faction! Or might he not (upon Revolution-Principles) be stiled a Traytor to his People?—The consequence of such Treason must, and ought to be, as fatal to the Sovereign (upon those Principles) as to the Peasant.

A King of England holds his Crown, at this Time of Day, upon a strict Conformity to the Principles of Government, established at the Revolution. This Engagement makes a part (and a most essential part) of his CORONATION-OATH. If he suffers these Principles (this mode of governing by Law established) to be violated in any Part of his Dominions, he is clearly guilty of wilful Perjury; of a more corrupt Species of Perjury than the low Villain who is suborned to commit it in a Court of Justice. The importance of the Case aggravates the Crime. He breaks the solenm Contract made with his People at the Altar. This People are the whole collective Body of Subjects throughout his whole Empire. By breaking this Contract he becomes a Deceiver of his People, and a Betrayer of their Rights. When I say a Betrayer, I mean a Traytor. The words are synonymous. In this Case of Contract (for there always must be one, either express or implied, between Sovereign and Subject) the Obligations on either Side must be reciprocal; and, consequently, if a Subject is guilty of a Breach of Allegiance on his Part, he becomes a Traytor to his King; on the other Hand, if a King is guilty, on his Part of a Breach of Contract, he must necessarily be a Traytor to, or Betrayer of his People. If such a Subject ought to die, such a King ought not to reign. A Nation may better endure another Saint, or Martyr, in the Calendar, than another Fool or Devil on the Throne. Such a wretched Shadow of Royalty, might chance to suffer, not for his own proper demerits, but for confiding too far in a corrupt Set of Men whom he thought his Friends; Edition: current; Page: [365] he might even happen to suffer for confiding in the Wisdom of a corrupt Parliament. Such a Prince, meanly content with the flattering Name of King, would, in a delirium of Confidence, leave the actual Sovereignty to be exercised by those who duped him. Unacquainted with Men and Things, however impatient of the Leading String, he must endure it, because he would feel himself in a perpetual State of infancy. Natural Pride must, in this Instance, and in many others, yield to natural Weakness. With an Education too narrow to enable him to think or act like a Man, he would still stand in need of Lectures from his Tutor, like a Child. If a mere Machine might be said to act, so might he.

Unapprized, or stupidly inattentive to the Fate which has constantly attended those unhappy Princes, who have been the Dupes of Favourites, under the specious name of Friends, such a King would persevere in lavishing Honours upon the most odious Person in his Kingdom. To him, alone, or to his Under-Agents, would such a Prince open his Eyes, his Ears, and his Heart. From that baneful Quarter, only, would he receive Advice; under that pernicious Influence he would act, and upon such insidious Counsels would he risk the Dignity of his Crown, the happy Establishment of his Family, the Welfare of his People, and no small Portion of his Empire. He would be taught to look upon the Laws as the Instruments of his Pleasure not as the Rules of his Actions. Made thus a Tyrant in Theory, the happiest Circumstance of his Reign would be, his wanting Courage to attempt the Practice, at least near the Seat of Empire.

The Necks of his Subjects (by that Advice which he confides in) would first be bowed to the intended Yoke in the remotest Parts of his Dominions. If they, after the necessary Intimidations had been used, received it tamely, he would piously hope that the Contagion of Slavery might be artfully and gently diffused, till it made its Appearance as well in the Senate as the Palace. Sure from such a Conduct, to meet the Hatred and Contempt he justly merited, he would anxiously shun the public Resentment, and lead, as much as possible, a Life of domestic Obscurity, like his Brethren, the Tyrants of the East. This, by the Sycophants of his Court, would be called a Love of Retirement, a Sign of conjugal Edition: current; Page: [366] and parental Happiness; perhaps a pious Retreat for the Performance of religious Duties; at least, a necessary Relaxation from the Weight of Government.

But, alas! in this splenetic and sullen Refuge from the greatest Happiness of a Patriot King, the grateful Acclamations and reiterated Blessing of a happy People, even in this remote Asylum from the public Eye, such a pent-up-Monarch (if native Stupidity did not blunt Reflection) would count the bitterest Moments of his Life.

Look in upon a foolish Prince in these Hours of Seclusion, sacred (as his Minions would insinuate) to public, conjugal, parental, and religious Duties, and he will, probably, be found, like another DOMITIAN, catching Flies, and giving them the Torture; or in some Amusement no less puerile.

Instead of turning his Mind, like the King and Father of a Country, to political and princely Studies, behold him intensely busied in disposing the Pictures in his Baby-house in new Lights, or shewing his Abilities, as a military Draftsman, in sketching out a new Pattern for a Button to a Birth-day Suit.—Turn your Eyes hither, ye Potentates and Princes of the Earth! Behold here a Blaze of Majesty! Admire such Magnanimity, and tremble at such an Enemy!—

Let us now view this Solomon in the Zenith of his Glory, encircled by his Flatterers, and receiving, greedily, the humble Offerings of courtly Incense in his Palace. Even here he will seem to want Dignity in his Manner, Grace in his Address and Affability, though he may affect to smile. The sparing Tinge of a generous Education will appear through all the Trappings of Royalty. Poverty of Mind is not to be concealed beneath a gorgeous Habit. Even a Crown must first receive the Lustre it reflects.

When a princely Education has been designedly and wickedly withheld, Nature must be liberal indeed, or the Character of Majesty must be strangely inconsistent. Such an unfinished Scrip of Royalty must be hot, precipitate, perverse and overbearing in Council; cold, pusillanimous, and inactive in the Field; averse to receiving any advice himself. Uxorious, yet not constant; sanctified, not religious; avaritious, Edition: current; Page: [367] yet profuse; sullen without Spirit; obstinate without Fortitude; rigid without Virtue; tenacious without Reason; assuming without Abilities; longing to be absolute, yet timid in effecting it; trembling to invade, yet basely undermining public Liberty, by the mercenary Endeavours of every Tool he can corrupt; wounding, like a dastardly Assassin, in the dark, that Constitution which he has not the Courage to destroy, or even boldly to attack. An Adept in the mean Arts of Perfidy and Treachery; but a mere Novice in the kingly Art of Government. A nominal and pretended Guardian of the Laws, yet a secret Abettor of those Traytors who, at his own Instance, daily corrupt the Source from whence they flow. Of a Character too equivocal to be feared as a Tyrant, or beloved as a King, he is the first at Heart, and the latter only in Appearance. Perpetually mistaking Men and Things, Means and Ends, his Government would produce Anarchy and Confusion; his tyrannic Principles, Resistance and a Revolution. With a Mind busy, yet pusillanimous, he would, probably, pursue mechanical and artificial, more than military Knowledge; but his Patronage would discourage, his very Name disgust and damp all Genius. If he affected the liberal Arts, and should be prompted, not by Taste, but Vanity, to encourage, or to fancy he encouraged them, he would, most assuredly, mistake the Means, by meanly patronizing one Party of Artists against another. His despotic Disposition would break forth even in the slightest Instances, and thus absurdly would he blast and cherish with the same Breath. Royal Academies might be instituted, Royal Professors might make sycophantic Orations in Honour of their ROYAL MECENAS, but still the Arts wou’d droop, if not die. Under the Auspices of so weak a Patron, should they unexpectedly preserve their Vigour, it must be owing merely to public Taste, not to Royal Affection and Caprice. What if he should take it in his Head to study Stars more than Men, and busy himself more about the planetary than the political System? What if he should lend a patient Ear to the nauseous Flattery of Painters, Fidlers, Mechanics and Buffoons, yet reject with Scorn and Insult the repeated Supplications of the first Metropolis in his Kindom? What Name, what Censure, what Contempt, what Ignominy, would he not deserve?

Edition: current; Page: [368]

But I am tired with the irksome Contemplation of this Mass of Royalty; born alas! to grasp, not to sway, a powerful Scepter; to squander, not to apply, an immense annual Revenue. Too much a Child to know an End of Prodigality, too little of a Man to set Bounds to his Revenge. As the one has no Object, so the other has no just Cause.

I want Patience to dwell longer upon the Portrait of this ideal Monster. If Nature ever furnished its Original, his Kingdom must be distressed indeed.

However, before I quit this motley Character, this vile Compound of heterogeneous and unprincely Qualities, I will try to penetrate this lumpish Mass of indigested Majesty with one short Word, and then plunge it in Oblivion, with Contempt.

If this vain Idol hath Ears, and heareth, let it hear this honest and wise Precaution, given to crowned Heads by the discerning Lord Bolingbroke: “Let not Princes flatter themselves,” says that great Statesman, “they will be examined closely, as well in private, as in public Life, and those who cannot pierce further, will judge by the Appearances they give in both.”1


asterisksNo. XLI. will be addressed to the People of England, upon the Meeting of Parliament (alias the Conspiritors) to register Edicts of an ungrateful Tyrant.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-Street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [369]


To be continued Weekly.

Price Two Pence Half-penny.

Rome, Sparta, and Carthage PERISHED, and without there is some COURAGE in Englishmen, Britain must be DESTROYED.


Men and Britons, Friends and Countrymen,

YOUR LIVES are to be sacrificed, your LAWS destroyed, your RELIGION changed, your LIBERTIES annihilated, and your ESTATES taken from you by a corrupt House of Commons, a Blood-thirsty Administration, and a tyrannic p-----d King. With YOUR Money FOREIGN Troops are to be paid, to cut the THROATS of your Brethren and Fellow-subjects, and to carry Slaughter and Desolation through the wide extended Continent of America. The most savage Means have already been made use of to reduce an industrious, brave, free, and loyal People, from a State of Affluence, to that of Poverty, Want and Slavery, only because they have nobly resisted TYRANNY and LAWLESS POWER, and defended their own, and the natural Rights Edition: current; Page: [370] of Mankind, with a Firmness and Resolution (not to be equalled in History) that will do immortal Honour to their Names.

The Cruelties exercised upon our Brethren in America by mercenary Soldiers, would disgrace the most barbarous Nations upon Earth, and will for ever mark with indelible Infamy, the present Sovereign and his Ministers. Illegal and unjust Taxes have been levied upon them, by a House of Commons smuggled for the Purpose; their Property wantonly and arbitrarily seized; several People inhumanly butchered without Provocation or Offence; their Charters destroyed; new made Judges, and new modes of Proceeding appointed, unknown to the Laws and Constitution, an Act was passed the last Session of Parliament for the horrid, the diabolical Purpose of destroying, by FAMINE, more than TEN THOUSAND Souls; since that, their Towns and Properties have been destroyed by FIRE AND SWORD, when aged Men, Women, and Children perished in the Conflagration.

The House of Commons are now met, for the avowed Purpose of imposing illegal, heavy, and unjust Taxes upon you, to carry on the present bloody, unnatural, ministerial War against the Americans, and to take into the pay of Great Britain a certain Number of foreign Troops, who are to plunge their Swords into the Bowels of our Fellow-subjects, and to carry Devastation, Slaughter, and Massacre through the Land. Should the King and his Ministry succeed in their diabolical Design to enslave one Part of the Empire, and you can be base enough to give them Assistance in this horrid Work, by paying UNJUST Taxes, and tamely complying with such Measures, you will be the next Victims at the Altar of Despotism.—It is, therefore, a Duty you owe to God, to your Country, to yourselves, and to Posterity, not only to REFUSE the Payment of any Taxes that may be levied upon you by the present venal Senate, for the Purpose of paying foreign Troops to carry Fire, Sword, Famine, and Desolation through the Colonies, but you ought to OPPOSE and RESIST the Execution of any such Laws: unless you have Virtue and Resolution enough to act in this Manner, you will entail upon yourselves, and Millions yet unborn, Misery, Oppression, and Slavery. Petitions and Remonstrances have been spurned with Contempt. Your Prince is weak and obstinate; Edition: current; Page: [371] he is a Slave in his Palace, the mere Tool of a Scotch Junto in the Council; ignorant of the Laws and Constitution; a Stranger to military Affairs, and the whole Art of Government—Under the Pretence of supporting a SUPREME parliamentary Authority over the most distant Parts of the Empire, NOT REPRESENTED, they design to establish Tyranny and arbitrary Power by Act of Parliament in America, and as a Majority in the present House of Commons is notoriously bribed with the public Money to betray their Trust, every Englishman may soon have the Honour of being made a Slave by Law, for if this uncontroulable Supremacy of Parliament is once admitted, and not opposed and resisted, the Life, Liberty, and Property of every Man will be at the Mercy of a few venal Representatives, a royal Tyrant and his Minions.—Let me advise you then, before this Doctrine, so fatal to the natural Rights of Mankind, gains Ground to make a noble Stand.—Nothing can be more dreadful than for a Nation to be involved in the Horrors of a Civil War; but when the common Welfare of ALL is willfully neglected, the most SACRED RIGHTS of the People OPENLY INVADED, the repeated Petitions for Redress of Grievances, not only thought undeserving of Consideration, but the Petitioners made the Jest and Mockery of a corrupt Court, thereby adding Insults to their Injuries, every GOOD MAN will steadily unite in the COMMON CAUSE, and use his utmost Endeavours to wrest the POWER of GOVERNMENT out of Hands that have exercised it WEAKLY and WICKEDLY.

It were much to be wished, that the EVILS of a NATION might be cured without Violence; but when it is evident that the PUBLIC LIBERTY and SAFETY is not even tolerably secured, and that Mischiefs, and those too of a more lasting Kind, daily arise from the Continuance of the present Men in Power, than are to be feared from the vigourous Efforts for an ALTERATION of them, it is LAWFUL and HONOURABLE, and it is OUR DUTY, to oppose and defeat their System of Government, which apparently tends to the utter Subversion of the RIGHTS and LIBERTIES of a FREE PEPOLE. By the Law of Nature every Man has a Right to defend himself against the Abuse of Power, and by the singular Constitution of this Kingdom, when KINGS and MINISTERS break through the Bounds prescribed by LAW, the People’s Right of RESISTANCE Edition: current; Page: [372] is unquestionable: for as the End of all Civil Government is the SAFETY and HAPPINESS of the whole Body, any Power not naturally conducive to this End, is certainly unjust. The Prince and People enter into a Compact, or Engagement, one with another; the Prince to govern well; and the People, so long as the Contract is religiously adhered to on his Part, to honour and obey him. If he regards his own Interest, or the Interest of his Minions, in Preference to that of his People, he necessarily forfeits every Claim to their Affection and Esteem.

In Times of national Decay—when Trade is rapidly declining—when the POOR are groaning under the Oppressions of the RICH—when the ancient Rights and Liberties of the People are daringly attacked, and openly violated—when that Land which used to be esteemed a PARADISE, is made a Stage of Cruelty and Injustice—when Merit is wholly neglected, and those only advanced at this Time, who are willing to be Instruments in the horrid Work of DESPOTISM—when PUBLIC DUTIES engage not the least Share of Attention; but senseless Ostentation, Profuseness, and Dissipation, are the sole Objects of Delight amongst the GREAT, whose pernicious Examples tend to draw all Ranks of Men to a base Uniformity of SPIRIT with THEMSELVES—when our Court is slavish, our Parliament corrupted, and those who formerly brought Kings and Ministers to a Sense of their Duty, submit themselves, in the midst of Affluence, to a mean, servile Dependance upon the Crown—when Bribery at Elections, which utterly destroys the Morals of the People, is publickly avowed, as the necessary Expedient of Government—when all Manner of Profaneness, Looseness, Luxury, and Immorality are set up and countenanced, instead of Piety, Modesty, and Justice—when the SWORD is employed by a Blood-thirsty implacable Administration to massacre our guiltless Fellow-subjects abroad, and is surely destined, in the End to butcher those at home—when rascally INFORMERS are employed by the Ministry, as in the infamous and corrupt Reign of Charles the Second, to swear away the Lives of those few brave and virtuous Men, who are the tried friends of their Country.—What Joy can an Englishman receive when the true Face of our Affairs carries such a miserable Aspect? What Heart is there so unfeeling with Respect to the Public Welfare, as not to sympathize with the Distresses and Calamities of his Country.

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It is, therefore, the indispensible Duty of every Man, at this Time, who has Virtue enough to prefer the general Good of the Community, and who pretends to a Concern for its Interests, to consider well the PART he ought to take, in a Scene so pregnant with MISCHIEF, RUIN, and DISTRESS. He must either shamefully relapse into an indolent Indifference about every Thing that ought to interest him as an ENGLISHMAN, or be animated by a just and honourable Purpose of obtaining a Satisfaction to the LAWS OF HIS COUNTRY, equal, at least, to the Violation they have suffered.

Unless the present infernal Ministry is removed, the present Parliament dissolved, the Septennial Act repealed, Placemen and Pensioners not suffered to sit in the House of Commons, a more equal Representation of the People, and the present Measures of Government entirely changed: I say, unless these Things are accomplished through the intrepid Firmness and spirited Resolution of the People, the Life and personal Liberty of every Man who may ACT, WRITE, or SPEAK in Opposition to the Corrupt and Bloody Court of George the Third, must be in danger from Ministerial ASSASSINS and INFORMERS. The Orders for apprehending STEPHEN SAYRE, Esq; and seizing his Papers, upon a ridiculous, futile Charge of TREASON, ought to alarm every Man in the Kingdom.1 The best and worthiest Men in England may fall a Sacrifice to those PARRICIDES, those TRAYTORS, those BLOOD-HOUNDS of Power, and their suborned Evidences, if a speedy Stop is not put to their infamous Proceedings by a general ASSOCIATION of the People. The sagacious Fielding, and the Cyclops Rochford, ought to have known, Edition: current; Page: [374] that the Information given against Mr. Sayre, by RICHARDSON, who was paid for the Purpose, did not authorize them to commit him, under the Statute of Treasons passed in the Reign of Edward the Third.—The Informer did not prove, as the Statute requires, any OVERT ACT of Treason, which ought to have been done; as it was not, the Commitment is arbitrary and illegal. NO WORDS can amount to TREASON.—If a Subject conspire with a foreign Prince to invade the Realm by open Hostility, and does not PREPARE for the same, by some Overt Act, it is no Treason, by the before-mentioned Statute. A Conspiracy to levy War is no Treason, by the same Act, until it be levied, for without that it is no Overt Act, or manifest Proof of compassing the Death of the King. To compass and imagine, is to contrive, design, or intend the Death of the King; but this must be declared by some OVERT ACT. Indeed Lord Mansfield, with the Assistance of Chancellor Apsley, may make Treason of the Lord’s Prayer, or the Ten Commandments, by CONSTRUCTION. However, if a grand Jury should find a Bill there surely is not Twelve Englishmen to be got in the Kingdom who would, even with all the Sophistry and all the Chicanery of a Mansfield, convict Mr. Sayre of Treason; besides, there must be TWO Men of the same CONDITION with the Prisoner, to prove an OVERT ACT of Treason; but if all Sir John Fielding’s Thief-takers and himself, together with Lord Rochford and his INFORMER, should swear, that Stephen Sayre, Esq; SAID, he would seize the King’s Person, and take the Tower of London, it would not make these bare WORDS Treason. There is no doubt, however, but Lord Rochford, and the rest of the Ministry, as they could suborn one Wretch to inform, will be able to procure another, equally infamous, to swear they shall desire.

Many brave and virtuous Men, the Champions of Liberty, have been villainously dispatched to the other World in former Reigns, by illegal Trials, suborned Evidences, corrupt Judges, and infatuated Superiors, and why not at this Time? what has been, may be again. The great ALGERNON SIDNEY fell a Sacrifice in the Time of Charles the Second, a Reign equally infamous and inglorious with the present: In those Days, as in these, the scattered Remains of English Liberty were attacked on all Sides, and no Man who was distinguished for a Love of Freedom, Edition: current; Page: [375] could escape Destruction. The SPYING and INFORMING Trade was carried on with great Success, and encouraged by Charles the Second and his Ministers, as it is now by George the Third and his Ministers. Charles was blessed with the bloody-minded, the inhuman JEFFERIES, as CHIEF Justice: George is equally happy in a MURRAY. Sidney, with the true Spirit of an Englishman, when he came before the Council, told them, with a Boldness which Innocence inspired, that if they had any PROOF against him, he should make the best Defence he could; but they were not to expect he would fortify their Evidence by any Thing he should say: By this Means his Examination was very short, besides there being no Sort of Evidence against him, his Commitment like that of Mr. Sayre’s was illegal and against Law; for he was not taken up as a Plotter, or Traitor, but, like Mr. Sayre, for being a Republican. However there was no Crime at that Time more capital, nor is there a greater at this, than to be an Enemy to unlimited Monarchy, and despotic Power. Mr. Sidney was committed to the Tower, but not denied the Use of Pen, Ink and Paper, or the Sight of his Friends, as Mr. Sayre now is, to the eternal Disgrace and Infamy of the present Ministry. The Trial of Mr. Sidney was certainly a Master-piece in its Kind, and will transmit the Infamy of the Judges and Juries which were employed, to latest Posterity. A Jury was picked out, agreeable to the Desire of the Court: They consisted of the meanest of the People. Sidney objected to a Number of them because they were not Freeholders; but Jefferies (the Mansfield of our Days) told him, that had been over-ruled in Lord Russel’s Case, and therefore it should be so in his. JEFFERIES, like MANSFIELD, was for making PRECEDENTS, and as no Witnesses could be produced, not even the unpardoned WEST, and the to be pardoned Lord Howard, that proved any Act of Treason, and as Jefferies was resolved to condemn him right or wrong, he had Recourse to his Papers, and though no one could prove the Hand-writing, yet by the singular Sagacity of Jefferies, they were found to contain sufficient Proof for Conviction. Not to mention a Number of other Particulars equally infamous and disgraceful, the Court concluded, that SIDNEY was not only guilty of being concerned in a PLOT which was charged upon him, but that he could not have been otherwise, because his PRINCIPLES led him to it, to which Jefferies Edition: current; Page: [376] added, that he was born a Traytor. O! glorious Times, renewed again by George the Third: Now for Plots and Counter-plots, which Mansfield shall make out.

Printed and published for the Authors, by T. W. Shaw, in Fleet-street, opposite Anderton’s Coffee House, where Letters to the Publisher will be thankfully received.

Edition: current; Page: [377]


To be continued Weekly.

Price Two-Pence Half-penny.

asterisks The Authors of the CRISIS propose, in their next Number, to DISSECT the last BLOODY Speech of the present Pious, Hypocritical Sovereign; the Operation would have been performed this Week, but the CALM ADDRESS of the canting, jesuitical Wesley, agreeable to the order of Time, claimed our Attention first.

  • Whilst servile Wesley’s Pen with Johnson’s vyes,
  • Enforcing all his Sophistry and Lyes;
  • Enlisted in the Service of the Press,
  • His passive Soul breaths forth a Calm Address.
  • This Saint from holy Toils how Mammon draws!
  • Truth his pretence, but Gain the latent Cause.
  • A Mitre tempts; and North, not slow to thank,
  • Returns the Priest his Compliments in Bank.
  • North knows Saints fight, but never think, nor yield;
  • And thus secures the Myriads of Moorfield.
  • Edition: current; Page: [378]
  • Mad Hosts, who drown with Hymns the Trumpet’s Sound,
  • And purchase Heav’n by dunging hostile Ground!
  • Anonym.1

THE trumpet sounds in Zion; the sons of Whitfield are alarmed, and John Wesley himself hath taken up the arms of the spirit.2—How wretched a cause have Bute and Mansfield, when the very Tabernacles must be ransacked for advocates, and field-preachers are inlisted in the service of a ministerial press? General Gage complains (I think in his proclamation for enforcing military law in America) that the presses there teemed with sedition, and that the very pulpits were prostituted to that service. Is not every imposition, every means of blinding and deceiving the good People of England practised in our metropolis both by clergy and laity, in the pulpits, in the public papers, in lying pamphlets, in public Coffee Houses, nay, in private families, as often as ministerial hirelings can gain admittance? Do not the corrupt lackques of a corrupt Administration, insinuate themselves, like evil Genii, into every company, in all shapes, and characters, labouring to taint the principles of every honest Revolutionist? Are not the pastors of every sect pressed into the trammels of government, to aid, defend, or palliate the pernicious schemes of Bute and Mansfield, those Empsons and Dudleys of the Nation?3 The very enthusiasts of Moorfields, are now wrapt in political reveries, their Tabernacles resound with anti-revolution Doctrines, whist their holy pastors are drawn aside by the Mammon of unrighteousness. Paradventure, a pair of lawn Edition: current; Page: [379] slaves is promised (and only promised) to John Wesley, if he will work up his thousands and ten thousands, to roar, like bulls of Basan, in the cause of falsehood, corruption, tyranny, and blood.

By the acquisition of this leader of the elect, how are the secular arms of Johnson and his scribbling Garretteers strengthened and enforced? How is the ministerial cause supported? With what awful pomp will the royal standard be hoisted, when these maddening zealots, with John Wesley at their head, shall dance before it, and all the furious hosts of hot-heads shall shout Amen, to the bloody Purposes of a pusillanimous driveling King, cloathed in purple and fine linen!—However this new captain of our political salvation may have escaped unanswered from his Tabernacks, he must, in this worldly warfare of the press, submit, not only to a reply, but, perhaps, to some rebuke. When he takes up the pen, he must remember that he wields a weapon of the flesh, and must sometimes stoop to kiss the rod.—In his late Calm Address to our American Colonies, I find but little to applaud, though much to reprehend. This preacher treads in Johnson’s steps; but without the least abilities or knowledge, as a hackney writer. He is a mimic of his master; he apes his sophistry, and almost equals his audacity. He sets out by likening a body of Colonists, settling under the royal charter, to a trading corporation, or the vestry of a parish. Proceeding upon this infectious mistake (among others which he has copied from his master Johnson) all he advances must be wrong. He will pardon me if I submit to him my notion of a chartered Colony, by observing, that emigrants from civilised states, who have the settlement of a colony in view, though they leave their native country, do not mean to abandon their natural allegiance. They change their place without a change either of their national or social principles and attachments. In consequence of these sentiments and affections, the first act of notoriety where they fix their settlement, is generally to hoist the colours of that state from whence they come, claiming, by proclamation, the vacant territory for their lawful sovereign, whose charter they receive, of course, as an assurance of his protection, in return to their loyal declaration of allegiance. Thus foreign territories, discovered by Englishmen, (and the same rule holds among all civilized nations) belong to the crown of England. I say, to the crown of England, to the sovereign only, and not Edition: current; Page: [380] to king, lords, and commons. It is the undoubted prerogative of the sovereign to grant a charter, which may, if the king thinks fit, be a charter of incorporation to his colony. By the word colony I understand a body of emigrants who separate from one community to form another distinct one where they please, still professing allegiance to, and, in return, receiving protection from, their natural or lawful sovereign, by virtue of his royal charter. Now where is the least similitude between such an emigrant body, though incorporated (as some have actually been) for the purpose of settling a colony, and a trading corporation; except that both have received the royal charter? At the same time, it must be observed, that it is not in the king’s power, whatever he may intend, to abridge the rights and liberties of his subjects by any restrictions in such charter. Though the chartered body thereby acquires a new politic capacity, yet it still retains, in all its individual members, its natural capacity. A mere fiction of law cannot extinguish the rights of a subject. To such a fiction every corporate body owes its politic existence. Taken collectively it is the creature of the king, and its rights are circumscribed (as the ministerial scribblers insist) by charter; but taken individually, they are so many members, or (permit me to say) heirs, of the British constitution, whose rights were clearly settled at the revolution, as far as that settlement extends; for it is not perfect; it is confessed on all hands, (not inimical to the constitution) that some necessary stipulations are omitted. Be that as it may, the rights of all corporate bodies, acting in their natural capacities, can be limited only (as the constitution stands at present) by the compact between sovereign and subject at the revolution. We do not find there, that subjects can be taxed without their consent, as parson Wesley asserts. We do not find there that the king can annex his colony (his own demesnes) to the realm of England by other means than the policy of the English law allows, that is, by act of parliament; for to such acts as concern the whole realm, the whole realm, all its three estates, king, lords, and commons, must be parties. By these, and these means only, can a colony, out of the realm, be taxed constitutionally by our parliament. The colony cannot otherwise be either virtually, or actually represented; and therefore all the flimsy Tory arguments respecting virtual representation must fall to the ground; and the mercenary troops of ministerial pen-men are laid on Edition: current; Page: [381] their backs, as it is devoutly wished their swordsmen may be on the plains of distressed, insulted, and dragooned America.4

If the pockets of America, like those of Great Britain, must be picked, for the worst of purposes, that of undermining the constitution, let them be picked in due form, and with some shew and colour of decency; let them be picked according to the established precedent for annexing the sole property of the crown, in foreign territories, to the realm of England: they will still be picked no less by act of parliament, without letting loose famine, fire, massacre, and all the miseries of war upon subjects whom neither king nor parliament have a right to pillage, but in a legal way.—Let me pursue this disquisition a little further. In that community which English colonists have left, they were either actually or virtually represented, or they could not have been bound by any law of the legislature which they left behind them. In the new community, also, of which they are now become a part, they must be represented likewise, either actually or virtually, before they can be bound. But in the legislature of that community which they have left they cannot be bound (in respect to pecuniary taxation) because they are now no longer, either actually or virtually represented there. How can the commons of England give and grant the money of a distinct community of another realm or territory, not yet annexed to the realm of England? In a territory which is the sovereign’s demesne; for whatever some hireling scribblers have asserted to the contrary, yet all territories newly discovered still belong (as they did at the time the several settlements were made and granted on the American continent) to the crown. They who deny this know, or ought to know, that in order to avoid an unanswerable difficulty, they have the impudence to deny an undoubted truth.

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As the king’s prerogative stands at present (for it still stands as it did in the reigns of our worst kings, the Stuarts) all new colonies must hold their lands (as the old ones originally did) of the king, as tenants, in capite. It is, indeed, in the sovereign’s power, if he pleases, to grant these demesnes of his in capite, to be held of him for the future as free socage; in such case the kings of England have ever received some valuable consideration for such grant. King Charles the second received a subsidy of four and a half per cent on the sugars of that island from the colonists of Barbados, on this consideration. There are other instances of this in the other Carribbee islands. Now who were parties to this grant? The parliament of England did not, nor could, interfere with the least propriety (though jealous of prerogative at that time a-day) in a matter which concerned the king and his property alone. Who granted this revenue to the king, this internal tax (for so it was) the parliament of England, or the legislature of Barbados? It was the latter, who thought then, as America thinks now, (and rightly thinks) that they had an exclusive and peculiar right to give and grant the monies which they earned by the sweat of their own brows in a community distinct from that of England. This tax was, in the strictest sense, internal; for it was to be paid before their own sugars could be permitted to be shipped from their island to their mother-country. Though king Charles the second (who by turns duped, and was again himself the dupe of parliament) in his charters to Connecticut and Rhode-Island, and Pensylvania; though William and Mary in their grant of Maryland to Lord Baltimore, expressly reserve to the parliament of England (merely out of complaisance) their full power of taxation, &c. over those colonies, yet that reservation can confer no new powers on the parliament, much less can it enable them to tax unconstitutionally, and without either actual or virtual representation, persons who had quitted their territory for a distinct community, and who had acquired in that new community a new property of their own, of which they cannot legally be stripped but in due and legal form, either by the law of nature, the law of nations, or the common law of England, which every emigrant to an English colony takes with him, though he leaves his former legislature together with the local privileges and benefits of England behind him.

Edition: current; Page: [383]

Now, tell me, thou calm addresser, thou echo of thy master Johnson, in what respect is such a chartered body of emigrants like a trading corporation, or like the vestry of a parish, neither of which bodies are (like foreign colonies) out of the Realm, or unrepresented either actually or virtually in our parliament? No argument can be fairly formed, no just and true conclusions can be drawn between cases which are totally dissimilar. Though this corporation of colonists may subsist (as Mr. Wesley says) by a grant from higher authority, yet that high authority to which, he says, they still continue subject, cannot tax, (and most of our royal charters declare that the King will not tax them himself) nor can the King give the parliament of England a power of taxing them, and therefore the reservations of such a power in the royal charters to our parliament, is vain and nugutory, mere courtly froth, as I said before.

Having thus, with more attention than Mr. Wesley’s whole performance deserves, overturned his corner stone, I leave all his first eight plain inferences, as so many baseless superstructures, to fall to the ground. Whatever his designs may be, is no less a visionary in politics than in religion. His first eight paragraphs are a mere abridgement of the futile arguments which have been retailed by all the ministerial scriblers, from their Captain, Doctor Johnson, which to himself, and have been confuted again and again.

I come now to his ninth paragraph, where he declares his opinion freely, upon his own virre dire,5 assuring his readers that he is quite unbiassed, and that he was nothing to hope or fear on either side. I congratulate him upon this christian spirit of self-denial, so highly becoming a man of his sacred function; should he hope for a bishopprick, or even for a deanery, he must know that no confidence can be put in princes, nor in the sons of men, for they will deceive him; should he fear that his numerous flocks (from whence alone, perhaps, his hope cometh) should return to their sober senses, awakened, as from a dream. by the tyranny of their Edition: current; Page: [384] rulers; his fears are groundless; such holy poisons as priest-craft can instill prevent all recovery.—But let us hear him—He says, there are a few men who are declared enemies to monarchy—true—all revolutionists are enemies to every monarchy which is unlimited. Now, if the king, lords, and commons were to form a mere cabal, a junto, a combination, and confederacy; if the king had a venal majority of his own in the two houses, he would then be to all intents and purposes, a monarch unlimited.—Such a monarch, and such monarchy a Briton will always hate.—As to personal hatred, we see it sometimes even in the animal creation. Why does the generous horse hate the ass, as much as a wise man hates a fool?—As to the kingly office, it will ever be revered in England, while exercised upon revolution principles, and for ever opposed (perhaps to its destruction) when it proceeds upon principles of usurpation, tyranny, and blood. Every kingly act which exceeds the limits of humanity degrades the kingly office beneath the office of the common hangman.—As to a common-wealth, which Mr. Wesley dreams of, I believe it is no wise man’s thought, much less his idol; yet Mr. Wesley seems as if he was deep in this secret—He has discovered these Guy Fawke’s with their dark lanthorns.6 This good man certainly pictures out (like his predecessor John Bunyan) what he has seen in some spiritual trace.7 Let him enjoy his vision, and penetrate, if he can, to the very bottom of a design which seems to be secret to all beside himself.—As to foreign assistance, England has good reason, of late, to be sick of it, and America can have no occasion to call it in; she is a nation of warriors; and is fully able (to the sorrow of our Machiavels) to effect her virtuous purposes by her own intrinsic strength.—Mr. Wesley’s tenth paragraph contains the gentle, comfortable, sage, emollient admonitions of—an old woman.—His eleventh paragraph is altogether Edition: current; Page: [385] dehortatory—it is a master-piece of rhetoric in that style. Dissuading America from a final breach and disunion with Great Britain, he apprizes her that the remedy will be worse than the disease; that is to say, that truly patriotic revolutional resistance will, in its effects be more pernicious to brave and virtuous subjects than the worst of miseries which war can enforce, or tyrants can invent: for, O! says the preacher, what convulsions must poor America feel before any government is settled?—Poor America, Mr. Wesley? What, do you pity her? It is all over with you then; take my word for it, you will never be a bishop.—But, to be serious; why must America be so horribly convulsed before a government is settled there? What settled government upon earth ever proceeded upon sounder policy, greater deliberation, wisdom, fortitude, and good conduct, (I hope shortly to be able to add success) than the several American states. If to see a virtuous individual struggling with afflictions is a spectacle worthy of the Gods, as the devine Socrates declared, with what adoration would that greatest of all heathen philosophers have looked upon such a nation as America, united to a man in the noblest cause that ever justified resistance? What yoke can such a nation of heroes fear, but that which already galls them; that which they are wisely and bravely resolved to shake off, casting the cords of England from them? Should this resolve be crowned with the success it merits, out spiritual pastor’s fears for the poor Americans will be eased.—The man of God in his twelfth paragraph discovers, that his American brethren are dupes and tools to the designs of certain Achitophels,8 who are in league to overturn the English government in America. I suspect a most unpardonable erratum of the printer here. I am pretty confident (if Mr. Wesley is an honest man, for he does not want understanding) that instead of the words English government, Edition: current; Page: [386] we ought to read English usurpation. Let the true reading of this passage be restored, and these Achitophels will be Absaloms;9 these designing incendiaries will become saviours of the constitution.

I am now arrived at the spiritual exhortation to peace and passive obedience, with which this holy advocate for regal tyranny concludes his Calm Address. I shall dismiss it with this short observation: that if the City of London would but take their cue from this preacher-up of non-resistance, this divine joiner of borrowed arguments for slavery, their next address would be music to the sovereign. But, be the success of Mr. Wesley’s little labours what they may, as he professes to write from the heart, a priest of such principles most certainly deserves a mitre.

I cannot, however, pass over his appendix to this pastoral catch-penny, wherein he passes many strictures upon Dr. Smith’s sermon at Philadelphia.10 Mr. Wesley, like all other enthusiasts, is a very bold asserter, but a very weak opponent. What he endeavours to shew in his appendix is, that the American complaints of unconstitutional taxes, violated rights and infringed, or, as he calls them, mutilated charters, are vain and groundless. But hear, ye sheepish volunteers, for whom this preacher is beating up, how little this holy man knows of the English constitution; as it stands since the revolution. Dr. Smith has asserted, and most truly, that no power on earth has a right to give and grant away American property without American consent.—Then, says Mr. Wesley, you have no sovereign: because, every sovereign under heaven has a right to tax his Edition: current; Page: [387] subjects, that is, to grant their property either with or without their consent.—So, peremptory, so audacious, so ensnaring an assertion should have dropped from him only in the pulpit, where he could neither have been confronted, contradicted, or exposed. This assertion, in a general sense, is false, in a confined one, as relative only to an English sovereign, not only false, but treacherous, nay traiterous. It is a capital treason against the sacred compact between king and people at the blessed revolution: it is poisoning the ductile minds of his implicit believers with that exploded doctrine which cost Charles the first his head,

  • Hail Wesley, hail!—thy Brass the prize secures:
  • Ev’n Johnson’s front’s a bashful front to yours.

But this ecclesiastic tool does not blush even to repeat his monstrous assertion—“Am I, or two millions of Englishmen, made slaves,” says he, “because we are taxed without our own consent?”—Tell me, then,