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thereof; and that such masters be looked upon as having an evil intention to the province.
Twentiethly. That no person leave the province without publication being made thereof in the market place, Three weeks before, and a certificate from some Justice of the peace, of his clearness with bis neighbours and those he has dealt withal, so far as such an assurance can be attained and given; and if any master of a ship shall contrary hereunto receive, and carry away any person that bath not given that public notice, the said master shall be liable to all debts owing by the said person, so secretly transported from the province. Lastly, that these are to be added to or corrected by and with the consent of the parties hereunto subscribed. Sealed and delivered in the presence of
WILLIAM PENN. William Boelham, Humphry South, Harbert Springet, Thomas Barker,
Thomas Prudyard, Samuel Jobson, Sealed and delivered in the pre
John Joseph Moore, sence of all the proprietors who William Powel, have bereunto subscribed, except Richard Davie, Thomas Farrinborrough and John Griffith Jones, Goodson, in the presence of
THE FRAME OF THE GOVERNMENT Of the Province of Pennsylvania, in America : together with certain laws in England, by the Governor and divers freemen of the aforesaid Province. To be further explained and confirmed there by the first Provincial Council that shall be held, if they see meet.
THE PREFACE. When the great and wise God bad made the world, of all his crcatures it pleased him to choose man his deputy to rule it; and to fit him for so great a charge and trust, he did not only qualify bim with skill and power, but with integrity to use them justly. This pative goodness was equally his honour and his happiness; and whilst be stood here, all went well; there was no need of coercive or compulsive means; the precept of divine love and truth in his bosom was the guide and keeper of his innocency. But lust prevailing against duty, made a lamentable breach upon it; and the law, that before had no power over him, took place upon him and his disobedient posterity, that such as would not live conformable to the holy law within, should fall under the reproof and correction, of the just law without, in a judicial administration. :
This the apostle teaches us in divers of his epistles. The law (says he) was added because of transgression: In another place, knowing that the law was not made for the righteous man; but for the disobedient and ungodly, for sinners, for unholy and propbane, for murderers, for whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, and for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, &c. But this is not all, he opens and carries the matter of government a little further : Let every soul be subject to the higher powers, for there is no power but of God. The powers that be are ordained of God: whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to Evil: wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same. He is the minister of God to thee for good. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but for conscience sake.
This settles the divine right of government beyond exception, and that for two ends ; first, to terrify evil-doers; secondly, to cherish those that do well; which gives government a life beyond corruption, and makes it as durable in the world, as good men shall be. So that government seems to me a part of religion itself, a thing sacred in its institution and end. For if it does not directly remove the cause, it crushes the effects of evil, and is as such (tbo' a lower yet) an emanation of the same Divine Power, that is both author and object of pure religion; the difference lying here, that the one is more free and mental, the other more corporal and compulsive in its operations : but that is only to evil-doers; government itself being otherwise as capable of kindness, goodness and charity, as a more private society. They weekly err, that think there is no other use of government than correction, which is the coarsest part of it : daily experience tells us, that the care and regulation of many other affairs more soft and daily necessary, make up much the greatest part of government; and which must have followed the peopling of the world, had Adam never fell, and will continue among men on earth under the highest attainments they may arrive at, by the coming of the blessed second Adam, the Lord from Heaven. Thus much of government in general, as to its rise and end.
For particular frames and models, it will become me to say little ; and comparatively I will say nothing. My reasons are : first, that the age is too nice and difficult for it; there being nothing the wits of men are more busy and divided upon. 'Tis true, they seem to agree in the end, to wit, happiness; but in the means they differ, as to divine, so to this human felicity; and the cause is much the same, not always want of light and knowledge, but want of using them rightly. Men side with their passions against their reason, and their sinister interests have so strong a bias upon their minds, that they lean to them against the good of the things they know.
Secondly, I do not find a model in the world, that time, place, and some singular emergences have not necessarily altered ; nor is it easy to frame a civil government, that shall serve all places alike.
Thirdly, I know what is said by the several admirers of monarchy, aristocracy and democracy, which are the rule of one, a few, and many, and are the three common ideas of government, when men discourse on that subject. But I choose to solve the controversy with this small distinction, and it belongs to all three; any government is free to the people under it (whatever be the frame) where the laws rule, and the people are a party to those laws, and more than this is tyranny, oligarchy, and confusion.
But lastly, when all is said, there is hardly one frame of government in the world so ill designed by its first founders, that in good hands would not do well enough'; and story tells us, the best in ill ones can do nothing that is great or good; witness the Jewish and Roman states. Governments, like clocks, go from the motion men give them, and as governments are made and moved by men, so by them they are ruined too. Wherefore governments rather depend upon men, than men upon governments. Let men be good, and the government cannot be bad; if it be ill, they will cure it. But if men be bad, let the government be never so good, they will endeavour to warp and spoil to their turn.
I know some say, let us have good laws, and no matter for the men that execute them : but let them consider, that though good laws do well, good men do better; for good laws may want good men, and be abolished or invaded by ill men; but good men will never want good laws, por suffer ill ones. 'Tis true, good laws have some awe opon ill ministers, but that is where they have not power to escape or abolish them, and the people are generally wise and good : but a loose and depraved people (which is to the question) love laws and an administration like themselves. That therefore, which makes a good constitution, must keep it, viz: men of wisdom and virtue, qualities that because they descend not with worldly inheritances, must be carefully propagated by a virtuous education of youth, for which after ages will owe more to the care and prudence of founders, and the successive magistracy, than to their parents for their private patrimonies.
These considerations of the weight of government, and the nice and various opinions about it, made it uneasy to me to think of publishing the ensuing frame and conditional laws, foreseeing both the censures they will meet with from men of differing humours and engagements, and the occasion they may give of discourse beyond my design.
But next to the power of necessity (which is a solicitor that will take no denial) this induced me to a compliance, that we have (with reverence to God, and good conscience to men) to the best of our skill, contrived and composed the FRAME and LAWS of this government, to the great end of all government, viz: to support power in reverence with the people, and to secure the people from the abuse of power; that they may be free by their just obedience, and the magistrates honourable for their just administration : for liberty without obedience is confusion, and obedience without liberty is slavery. To carry this evenness is partly owing to the constitution, and partly to the magistracy; where either of these fail, government will be subject to convulsions; but where both are wanting, it must be totally subverted : then where both meet, the government is like to endure. Which I humbly pray and hope God will please to make the lot of this of Pennsylvania. Amen.
THE FRAME. TO ALL PEOPLE, to whom these presents shall come. WHEREAS king Charles the second, by his letters patent, under the great seal of England; for the consideration therein mentioned, hath been graciously pleased to give and grant unto me William Penn (by the name of William Penn, Esq. son and heir of Sir William Penn, deceased) and to my heirs and assigns forever, all that tract of land or province, called Pennsylvania, in America, with divers great powers, preheminences, royalties, jurisdictions, and authorities, necessary for the well-being and government thereof : NOW KNOW YE, that for the well-being and government of the said province, and for the encouragement of all the freemen and planters that may be therein concerned, in pursuance of the powers aforementioned, I the said William Penn have declared, granted, and confirmed, and by these presents, for me, my heirs and assigns, do declare, grant and confirm unto all the freemen, planters and adventurers, of, in and to the said province, these liberties, franchises, and properties, to be held, enjoyed and kept by the freemen, planters and inhabitants of the said province of Pennsylvania for ever.
Imprimis. That the government of this province shall, according to the powers of the patent, consist of the Governor and freemen of the said province, in form of a Provincial Council and General Assembly, by whom all laws shall be made, officers chosen, and publick affairs transacted, as is hereafter respectively declared. That is to say,
Second. That the freemen of the said province shall, on the twentieth day of the twelfth month, which shall be in this present year, one thousand six hundred eighty and two, meet and assemble in some fit place, of which timely notice shall be before hand given, by the governor or his deputy, and then and there shall choose out of themselves seventy-two persons of most note for their wisdom, virtue and ability, who shall meet on the tenth day of the first month next ensuing, and always be called and act as the Provincial Council of the said province.
Third. That at the first choice of such Provincial Council, one third part of the said Provincial Council shall be chosen to serve for three years next ensuing; one-third part for two years then next ensuing, and one-third part for one year then next following such election, and no longer; and that the said third part shall go out accordingly. And on the twentieth day of the twelfth month as aforesaid, yearly for ever afterward, the freemen of the said province shall in like manner meet and assemble together, and then chuse twenty four persons, being one third of the said number, to serve in Provincial Council for three years. It being intended, that one third part of the whole Provincial Council (always consisting and to consist of seventy two persons, as aforesaid) falling off yearly, it shall be yearly supplied by such new yearly elections, as aforesaid ; and that no one person shall continue therein longer than three years : and in case any member shall decease before the last election during his time, that then at the next election ensuing his decease, another shall be chosen to supply his place for the remaining time he was to have served, and no longer.
Fourth. That after the first seven years, every one of the said third parts that goeth yearly off, shall be uncapable of being chosen again for one whole year following: that so all may be fitted for government, and have experience of the care and burden of it.
Fifth. That the Provincial Council in all cases of matters of moment, as their arguing upon bills to be passed into laws, erecting courts of justice, giving judgment upon criminals impeached, and choice of officers, in such manner as is herein after mentioned; not less than two thirds of the whole Provincial Council shall make a quorum ; and that the consent and approbation of two thirds of such quorum shall be had in all such cases and matters of moment. And moreover, that in all cases and matters of lesser moment, twenty-four members of the said Provincial Council shall make a quorum, the majority of which twenty four shall and may always determine in such cases and causes of lesser moment.
Sixth. That in this Provincial Council, the governor or his deputy shall or may always preside, and have a treble voice; and the said Provincial Council shall always continue, and sit upon its own adjournments and committees.
Seventh. That the governor and Provincial Council shall prepare and propose to the General Assembly hereafter mentioned, all bills, which they shall at any time think fit to be passed into laws within the said province; which bills shall be published and affixed to the most noted places in the inhabited parts thereof thirty days before the meeting of the General Assembly, in order to the passing them into laws or rejecting of them, as the General Assembly shall see meet.
Eighth. That the governor and Provincial Council shall take care that all laws, statutes and ordinances, which shall at any time be made within the said province, be duly and diligently executed.
Ninth. That the governor and Provincial Council shall at all times have the care of the peace and safety of the province, and that nothing be by any person attempted to the subversion of this frame of government.
Tenth. That the governor and Provincial Council shall at all times settle and order the situation of all cities, ports and market towns in every county, modelling therein all public buildings, streets, and market places, and shall appoint all necessary roads and highways in the province.
Eleventh. That the governor and Provincial Council shall at all times have power to inspect the management of the publick trea