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were swept away by the present Parliament, enthroned in thunder, and a most pacifick community involved in tumult and in blood. When I ruminate on these, with many other oppressions, and take into consideration recent piratical depredations, I am staggered in believing any American so abject as not to be diverted from sinister pursuits, and roused to opposition. Sure I am, that there is no man of true wisdom and a manly spirit, but would sacrifice his all, and risk his very life, rather than run the venture of having the one controlled, and the other commanded by a power so monstrous as the one from whence those calamities flowed.
In addition to these, others, the constant attendants of a conquered country, will be our lot, and the portion of posterity, unless in this critical moment we play the man, and defend our rights. It is not duty to leave wealth or honours to coming generations; but indispensable is the obligation to bequeath them liberty, and this, by the tenderest ties of interest, and the strongest cords of affection. It is the dictate of nature, a principle of self-preservation, when the laws of equity, the sanction of Charters, and the fundamentals of the Constitution are found insufficient to restrain the violence of domination, to arm and to fight. The character of a soldier is respectable, and his duty noble, when discharged in opposition to tyranny, in defence of the rights of mankind. A cockade unprostituted is a badge of greatness, a mark of goodness. It procures friendship, commands respect, and adds a dignity to the person who wears it. There is something godlike in hazarding in defence of ones country. The present hostile invasions are such as to demand all our resentment, and to arouse all our courage. The inheritance transmitted by our great forefathers, the safety of our friends, liberty purchased by the best blood of our ancestors, the surest, the fairest, the brightest jewel we possess, which alone communicates dignity to peace, and renders life a blessing, are all at stake. If we fail in our necessary duty, our land will become the price of conquest, the plunder of foreigners; and the effect of this conquest will be ruin and destruction to its present inhabitants, poverty and slavery to their immediate and remote successors. It is enough to fire with an invincible resolution rather to be wrecked in the storm, than to survive, the subjects of slavery, or the objects for a military execution.
We have passed the Rubicon; there is no retreat. What a Hutchinson has planned, a George has executed. The long and black catalogue of measures projected by the former, has been sanctified by the latter, and adopted by Britons. They received them with eagerness, carried them into their Senate, and made them their own. They are therefore principals in a felony, sufficient to wean from all attachments. Considering how we have been oppressed, and (if we may judge of the future by the past) how we shall be oppressed, if viewed as subordinate, instead of allied; it pleads strongly for bursting asunder those imaginary bands which have too long chained us to misery; for to contemplate the doctrines of Independency, and in earnest to inquire whether, if totally afloat from a state on which, as such, we were never dependant, we cannot, by the compass of common sense, weather the storm, and steer safely into the harbour of absolute freedom. The characters of Kings, as contained in the story of the world, have been made up of knaves or of fools. The former have been monsters for extravagancies, barbarity, and dissipation; the latter, like a weak ship in a violent tempest, with a vast sail, and no rudder. Examples are numerous.
A worthless villain having filled the ears of a foolish King with false stories of the Jews, he issues his Proclamation for their utter extirpation, and to kill at pleasure, and seventy thousand were slain. If a frantick fancy come into the head of a drunken whore, (the famous Thais,) Persepolis, a Royal city of Persia, must be burnt by the hand of Alexander. If the man after Gods own heart is smitten with the charms of Bathsheba, Uriah must be murdered. If a dancing wench please Herod, half his kingdom is at stake, and the most venerable of mortal heads must be sacrificed to the rage of her impure mother. If Helena, the daughter of a King, the most beautiful woman of her time, run away with a young rake, Troy must be reduced to ashes by a ten years siege. But if the son of a King ravish a woman, Kings must be expelled.
The instances of weak, wicked, and barbarous exercises of Monarchical power, which caused the Tyber to swell with blood under the Emperors, are too many, and too horrid to be described. The history of the dreadful contest for the Throne between the Houses of York and Lancaster, which fattened the fields with human gore; of the cruel carnage of the bloody Mary, who blackened the air with gibbeted men; the mad pranks of Henry VIII., Charles 1., and George III., are too notorious to need repeating. Thus bewitching and metamorphosing is power; thus fluctuating is Government, and wretched the governed, under the capre-cious wantoning of Regal domination. Surely it is enough to destroy in the breast of thinking beings that mysterious veneration for the crowned monsters; to exclude them from every system contrived for happiness; and to prepare the formal bills for our perpetual divorce from such political fornicators.
Attempts will still be made by the artful and wicked to create animosities, dissensions, and party strife. We trust the penetration of the times will be sufficient to discover their intentions, and resent the affront. If we become strangers to magnanimity, harmony among ourselves, integrity, and personal courage; if we yield to the cautions of a timorous moderation, to the maxims of a temporary interest, to the lullings of an unmanly repose, or the misplaced orders for State connections; if betrayed by cowardice, perverted by cunning, or subdued by power, all will be gone, all dependant upon the momentary will of a Prince, or his minions in office. Happiness and liberty, property and life, will become matters of gracious indulgence; rights and privileges, the meums and tuums of private interest, will be no more. The sublime doctrines of jure divino, of a British or an American Dr. Sacheverel, will form our creed; the irreligious edicts of an unprincipled Senate regulate the conscience; the subtilty of a jacobitish Chief Justice direct our contemplations, whips and swords procure submissions, the terror of chains and the horrors of a prison secure subjection.
Having, in a general way, touched upon those calamities which demonstrate the dangers that we have been, and still are exposed to, unless repelled by vigorous, timely, and united exertions; I shall suffer the pen which has too long trespassed on the readers patience to drop from the hand ever ready for the service of the publick; and as an atonement for dwelling thus long on a character so justly odious to every honest man as the hero of our paper, I drop him likewise with ineffable contempt, never to be stooped for again.
Friends and Fellow-Christians: That you may constantly implore His aid who winds up the chain of eternal events, coops in space, and dwells in the fields of immensity; that wisdom from on high, firmness, magnanimity, and a sagacity that lifts up the curtain of futurity, may pervade the bosoms of our Senatorial bodies; that the tears of America may be bottled in the vials of Heaven; that the LORD GOD of GODS, the LORD GOD of GODS may gird on the sword of his Majesty, and lead on our host to the battle; that our Generals may know no fear; that the feet of our soldiers may be like the roaring of lions, and their faces firm as the mountains; that the fountain of their life may be shielded by the spreading hand of Omnipotence; that their injuries may be healed with celestial balsam; that the blood of those who breathe out their souls at open wounds, may flow into the veins of a crucified Saviour; that they may exchange the present weapons of their warfare for crowns and for diadems; that every man, woman, and child, where, when, and whomsoever he be, may have discernment of their duty, and integrity and courage to discharge it; that the enemy may come out in one way, and retreat in ten; that their plots may be discovered, themselves taken in their own craftiness, and their froward Councils hurled headlong; that their cannon may refuse to roar, and the winds to wave their hoisted banners; that health may encircle our camps, success repair to our standard, and adversity stand trembling at a distance; that America may rise triumphant, blossom as the rose, and swell with increasing splendour, like the growing beauties of the Spring, bearing in her right hand the great Charter of Salvation, the Gospel of the Heavenly Jesus, and in the left the unfolded volumes of Peace, Liberty, and Truth, until the sturdy pillars of Nature shall totter into ruin, and the whole fabrick of Creation retumble into chaos, is the daily prayer of