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and the indocile, of the idle and the diligent, at the public cost, but reserve the rewards of learning for the learned, and of merit for the meritorious. If you permit the free discussion of truth without any hazard to the author, or any subjection to the caprice of an individual, which is the best way to make truth flourish and knowledge abound, the censure of the half-learned, the envy, the pufillanimity or the prejudice which measures the discoveries of others, and in short every degree of wisdom by the measure of its own capacity, will be prevented from doling out information to us according to their own arbitrary choice. Lastly, if you shall not dread to hear any truth, or any falsehood, whatever it may be, but if you shall least of all listen to those, who think that they can never be free, till the liberties of others depend on their caprice, and who attempt nothing with so much zeal and vehemence, as to fetter, not only the bodies but the minds of men, who labour to introduce into the state the worst of all tyrannies, the tyranny of their own depraved habits and pernicious opinions ; you will always be dear to those, who think not merely that their own fect or faction, but that all citizens of all descriptions should enjoy equal rights and equal laws. If there be any one, who thinks, that this is not liberty enough, he appears to me to be rather inflamed with the luft of ambition, or of anarchy, than with the love of a genuine and well regu. lated liberty; and particuarly since the circumstances of the country, which has been so convulsed by the storms of faction, which are yet hardly still, do not permit us to adopt a more perfect or desirable form of government.
For it is of no little consequence, O citizens, by what principles you are governed, either in acquiring liberty, or in retaining it when acquired. And unless that liberty, which is of such a kind as arms can neither procure nor. take away, which alone is the fruit of piety, of justice, of temperance and unadulterated virtue, shall have taken deep root in your minds and hearts, there will not long be wanting one who will snatch from you by treachery what you have acquired by arms. War has made many great whom peace makes fmall. If after being released from the toils of war, you neglect the arts of peace, if your
which most covet, readily change masters; they forsake the idle, and repair where virtue, where industry, where patience flourith most. Thus nation precipitates the downfal of nation ; thus the more found part of one people subverts the more corrupt; thus you obtained the afcendant over the royalists. If you plunge into the same depravity, if you imitate their excesses, and hanker after the same vanities, you will become royalists as well as they, and liable to be subdued by the same enemies, or by others in your turn; who, placing their reliance on the same religious principles, the same patience, the same integrity and discretion which made you strong, will de. fervedly triumph over you, who are immersed in debauchery, in the luxury and the sloth of kings. Then, as if God was weary of protecting you, you will be seen to have passed through the fire that you might perish in the smoke; the contempt which you will then experience will be great, as the admiration which you now enjoy ; and, what may in future profit others, but cannot benefit yourselves, you will leave a falutary proof what great things the solid reality of virtue and of piety might have effected, when the mere counterfeit and varnished resem. blance could attempt such mighty achievements, and make such considerable advances towards the execution. For, if either through your want of knowledge, your want of constancy, or your want of virtue, attempts fo noble, and actions so glorious, have had an issue so unfor. tunate, it does not therefore follow, that better men should be either less daring in their projects or less sanguine in their hopes. But from such an abyss of corruption into which you so readily fall, no one, not even Cromwell him. self, nor a whole nation of Brutus's, if they were alive, could deliver you, if they would, or would deliver you, if they could. For who would vindicate your right of unrestrained suffrage, or of choosing what representatives you liked best, merely that you might elect the creatures of your own faction, whoever they might be, or him, how. ever small might be his worth, who would give you the most lavish feasts and enable you to drink to the greatest excess ? Thus not wisdom and authority, but turbulence and gluttony would soon exalt the vilest miscreants
from our taverns and our brothels, from our towns and villages to the rank and dignity of senators. For, should the management of the republic be entrusted to persons to whom no one would willingly entrust the management of his private concerns; and the treasury of the state bé left to the care of those who had lavished their own for. tunes in an infamous prodigality? Should they have the charge of the public purse, which they would soon convert into a private, by their unprincipled peculations ? Are they fit to be the legislators of a whole people who themselves know not what law, what reason, what right and wrong, what crooked and straight, what licit and illicit means? who think that all power consists in outrage, all dignity in the parade of insolence? who neglect every other consideration for the corrupt gratification of their friendfhips, or the profecution of their refentments? who disperse their own relations and creatures through the provinces for the sake of levying taxes and confiscating goods; men, for the greater part, the most profligate and vile, who buy up for themselves what they pretend to expose to sale, who thence collect an exorbitant mass of wealth, which they fraudulently divert from the public service; who thus spread their pillage through the country, and in a moment emerge from pe. nury and rags, to a state of fplendour and of wealth ? Who could endure such thievifh fervants, such vicegerents of their lords? Who could believe that the masters and the patrons of a banditti could be the proper guardians of liberty ? or who would suppose that he should ever be made one hair more free by such a set of public functionaries (though they might amount to five hundred elected in this manner from the counties and boroughs). when among them who are the very guardians of liberty, and to whose custody it is committed, there mufl be so many, who know not either how to use or to enjoy liberty, who either understand the principles or merit the poss feffion? But what is worthy of remark, those who are the most unworthy of liberty, are wont to behave most ur.. gratefully towards their deliverers. Among such persons, who would be willing either to fight for liberty, or to encounter the least peril in its defence? It is not agreea