Page images



FEBRUARY 19, 1820. his people, while it gives him brow of a sovereign. À most hoMinisters, who are, in their own nourable and advantageous peace persons, responsible for every soon put an end to the war, and act done in his name. To praise enabled him, though his dominions ' the King on account of some acts, had been greatly extended, to see implies & perfect right to censure cure the peace and safety of his him on account of other acts.— dominions, uphold the splendour Therefore we must speak of the of his throne and maintain his high acts, merely as the acts of his station amongst the Potentates of reign, leaving him wholly out of Europe, with a military establishthe question.

ment so trilling as hardly to be Keeping this doctrine steadily worthy of the name of an army. in our minds, let us take a short Canada, New Brunswick, Nova review of the acts and events of Scotia, and other territories had the reign of his late Majesty,which, been added to the possessions of as it has been of uncommon dura. his crown; and yet the whole of tion, has witnessed an uncommon the taxes raised in the kingdom portion of events; and, as we shall during the year, amounted to not find, has seen a change in the double the sum which is now anaffairs of this kingdom, which it is nually paid in the shape of wages impossible for any man sincerely to tax-gatherers only! attached to his country not deeply

At the end of a few years of to deplore.

peace, evil councillors, 'in evil His late Majesty ascended the hour urged their sovereign into Throne under circumstances the violent contentions with his submost auspicious that ever accom-jects in the American colonies. panied the elevation of man. It Those subjects had, as is usually was towards the close of a war the the case with' regard to colonists, most completely victorious that been even more strongly attached the nation had ever known. The to their sovereign than those who pride of France had been humbled were placed nearer the throne. by his grand-father's fleets and They had, in the late war, explain-dressed soldiers. The King pended most liberally their blood, himself was the first of his family as well as their treasure, voluntaa Briton born; and it might truly rily in his service and for his hobe said that he put on the bright- nour; and without their aid, that est diadem that ever adorned the war might probably have ended


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

in disgrace instead of glory. For independent nation, the rival of these generous sacrifices; these Britain in commerce and in naval marks of fidelity and attachment, power: and, perhaps, the day is they were requited with attempts far less distant than some men to compel them to bear taxation must imagine when the armies, of without representation. Attached that nation may invade this kingto freedom from their infancy: not dom in return. lens enlightened than they were When his late Majesty ascended generous and brave : not less re- the throne, the annual interest of solute in maintaining their own the National Debt was little more rights than they had been gene-than four millions and a half; it is rous and devoted in maintaining now more than thirty-two millions. those of their King, they, after At that time the whole of the taxes having exhausted, ta its very collected in the year, amounted to sands, the source of petition and little more than eight millions and remonstrance, took up arms in de- a half. They now amount to fiftyfence of those rights.

three millions (exclusive of more To subdue them, or, as was the than four millions paid in wages to phrase of the day, to compel them the tax-gatherers); and even these to submit to be bound in all cases fifty-three millions leave a deficiwhatsoever, by a legislature in ency of more than eight millions. which they were permitted to But, some one will say, if the have not a single representative, taxes have been increased in fleets and armies were sent forth amount, the means of paying them from England, joined by Ger- have also been increased. The man armies paid out of the taxes posilice means have, but the relaof England : fire, sword, famine tive means have not. Rich and and false money were spread poor are relative terms. The over their land. After a long man whose estate renders him one and bloody struggle, the colo- hundred a year, and whose outnists triumphed. Liberty bore goings are confined within that away the palm; English fleets sum, is richer than the man whose and armies, so lately crowned estates are worth a hundred thouwith laurels, on that same conti- sand a year, and wlose outgoings pent, now retired from the contest are extended beyond his ineome. covered with disgrace.

Rish and poor, are not ternas to be : Out of this event has arisen an made use of in considering the af


FEBRUARY 19, 1820.


fairs of a nation. Happiness and“ Prince; exult not too much in misery are the terms; and as the " the thought of ruling over this

criterion of the sum of happiness industrious, laborious, ingeni? and misery which existed at the "ous, frank, brave and happy

time of his Majesty's ascending “ people ; for, before your days be the Throne, and those existing at numbered, they shall be a mass the time of his demise ; is to be “ of human beings the most looked for in the relative amount " wretched on which the sun ever of the poor-rates of England and shone. Their boasted independe Wales, let the following facts be “enee of spirit, and the solidity remembered : when the King as- “ of their dealings shall flee like cended the Throne, the poor-rates the sands of the desert before the amounted to one million a year; “ehicanery and craft of taxation and they now amount to more," and paper money. Their boastperhaps, than fifteen millions a “ed freedom shall go staggering year; while, besides this enormous

along under blow after blow; demand, every .creature with a “ 'till at last, ere the tardy mes. pound in his pocket, is called upon " senger of death shall summon i for voluntary contributions to stifle "you away, Englishmen shall not

the incessant cries of starving mil- dare to nieet to discuss matters lions.

“ appertaining to their rights withAb! my countrymen ! must we "out being superintended by per : keep silence ; must we choak with “sons having authority to make the words that we could utter!" them disperse upon pain of | No; let us, at any rate, is there " transportation; and, as to the : be, as we are told, no cure for our " expression of their opinions upsufferings, indulge in the last sad on paper, if, per chance, they privileges of degraded nature in 46 should utter that which may be." crying out, and uttering our siguis " thought to have a tendency to and groans. I, when his Majes-1“ bring either House of Parli. ty ascended the Throne, some one “ament into contempt, they shall had told him to check the honest be liable to be banished for life. exultations into which he could " Bridle, therefore, your exultanot, in the ardoar of his youth, “tion, young Prince; for, from

refrain from bursting out; if some “ this now happy England, shall | one, in that happy hour, had said “ its natives petition to be trans

to him, " be not too vain, young ported to seek refuge from their

“misery amongst savages in the though, in the conduct of the Lon

snows of Canada, or in the Afri- don daily press, for some time« can sands." If any one had said past, during which time that press this to his late Majesty, during his has been the vehicle of garbled walks at Kew, in the bloom of his statements, relative to a man's life, would he not have answered: most private affairs, and has be 6 Away, lying prophet ; that in co-operation with perfidious « which thou foretellest is as im- men who have been abandoned « possible as that the sun should enough to make a boast of being “shed darkness instead of light!" guilty of breaches of private confi

However, let us never despair dence; though, in the conduct of of any thing that we ought to che- this press, it has been very diffirish; and, above all things, let us cult to discover any very good never despair of our country; let proofs of its being the guardian of us say with our mouths, and ac, public morals; and though a like company the words with the wishes proof has not been very easy to be of our hearts : “GOD SAVE discovered in the very liberal use "KING GEORGE THE of the words apostate, miscreant, “ FOURTH!” And, that we blasphemer, villain, and the like, may not be hypocrites, let us, against a man upon whom they when we dare, and as far as we were unable to prove any one sindare, tell him honestly what we gle instance of irreligion, inimoral. think of the conduct of his ser- ity or indecency: though this press vants, and aid him, as far as we are has not, for some years past, meable and are permitted to aid him, rited the high title above mentionin endeavouring to restore our ed; and though I do not flatter country to freedom and to happi myself ever to see it merit much ness, and thereby using the only commendation; I have to consure means of giving tranquillity gratulate the public in general to his reign and dignity and safety and our friends the Reformers, in to his Throne.

particular, that this press has, WM. COBBETT. within the space of the last nine

days, discovered some favourable COBBETT's EVENING POST. symptoms of amendment. It has

12 February, 1820. ceased its outrageous and inde. The Press has been called the cent abuse. It has refrained from guardian of public morals. And, I again dipping into private account

FEBRUARY 19, 1820. ·

178 books; from publishing lists of, will be of the greatest service to mortgages and book-debts; from the country. The prevention of being the vehicle of accounts of falsehoods is one effect of it, arrests and of forgeries pretend- and the conveying of truth is ing to be old private letters, another. I recommend to the which, if authentic, must necessa Reformers to join, in half-dozens, rily have been stolen, and must as dozens, twenties, or thirties, as it necessarily have been communi. happen; to apply to some one (if cated by a thief. It has ceased it be in the country) who is known this part of its almost daily prac. in town, to order it of a news-man; tice; and for this salutary change and, they may take my word for in its conduct the scandalized pub. it, that they will then be far betlic has to thank this paper' ; which ter informed than those who do bas operated with regard to this not do the same. most respectable” part of the

WM. COBBETT. press in exactly the same way that a good heavy stone taken up by a

SEAT IN PARLIAMENT. man pursued by a barking cur, operates upon the conduct of that

My readers will see what I cur. The cur becomes, under sych have said on this subject. I have. circumstances, silent and good-stated fairly to the people my reamannered : at least, he ceases sons for wishing to be placed in Parfrom his pursuit; and thus has it lianent, and I think they may by happened with this part of the this time have a pretty tolerable press.

opinion of what I could do there. Generally speaking, a daily But, the acting when there, and newspaper is worse than a weekly

the getting there, are two different newspaper, so far as falsehoods told every day are more mischie

things. The services I could

render cannot be rendered unless vous than falsehoods told once a

I be put there ; and this depends week, But, a newspaper con

I know. the taining true intelligence, and re. upon the people. marks just as well as prompt up- peoples' minds are made up upon on all that passes, is certainly a it, and it now only wants a little most useful thing. And, my pa- individual exerlion. Only think, per, I hope, will be of this sort; if every one were to do something !

I think, that at this crisis it. And in return for this (which

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »