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was again enacted and extended to Scotland.
After these two solemn acts of the nation, it should seem, that nothing was left to be done, in order to give permanency and vigor to the principles, upon which the revolution was effected. * “ It rarely happens to a party to have the opportunity of a clear, authentic, recorded declaration of their political tenets upon the subject of a great constitutional event, like that of the revolution, The whigs had that opportunity, or, to speak more properly, they made it. The impeachment of Dr. Sacheverel was undertaken by a whig ministry, and a whig house of commons, and carried on before a prevalent and steady majority of whig peers. It was Sachererel's carried on for the express purpose of stating for the direct the true grounds and principles of the revo- nifetting the lution, what the commons emphatically called revolution. their foundation. It was carried on for the purpose of condemning the principles, on which the revolution was first opposed, and afterwards calumniated, in order, by a juridical sentence of the highest authority, to confirin and fix whig principles, as they had operated both in the resistance to king James,
Appeal from the New to the Old Whigs, p. 54, 55.
and in the subsequent settlement ; and to fix them in the extent, and with the limitations, with which it was meant they should be understood by posterity.” Without going into the particulars of the trial of Doctor Sacheverel, we shall find sufficient in the preamble to the articles of impeachment exhibited against him by the commons, to enable us to form a complete judgment upon the general intent and design of bringing on this trial. Such confidence and such glory did our ancestors place in these principles, that instead of drawing a veil over them, they seemed to have adopted, by bringing on this trial, the most effectual method possible of submitting them to the severest ordeal of minute and public investigation.
After reciting that the revolution had actually taken place, to the great happiness of the realm, and that the said glorious enterprize had since been approved by several acts of parliament, * the preamble sets forth
* Viz. by an act made in the first year of the reign of king William and queen Mary, intituled, An att declaring the rights and liberties of the fubjei, and settling the fuccefficn of the crown; and also by one other act made in the same year, intituled, An ait for preventing vexatious fuits against such as afled, in crder to the bringing in their majesties, or for their service; and also by one other
more particularly the happy and blessed con, sequences of the revolution; and that, notwithstanding, Dr. Sacheverel had, in two sermons, which he preached and published, attempted, by a “wicked, malicious, and seditious intention, to undermine and subvert her majesty's government, and the protestant succession, as by law established, to defame her majesty's administration, to asperse the memory of his late majesty, to traduce and condemn the late happy revolution, to contradict and arraign the resolutions of both houses of parliament, to create jealousies and divisions amongst her majesty's subjects, and to incite them to fedition and rebellion.” The solemn judgment of the house of peers The judgmene against Dr. Sacheverel muft, in my opinion, cleverel makes make it absolutely unlawful for any British maintain pub
licly tory prillo subject, in future, openly to deny or disap- ciples. prove of the revolution principles, or pubJicly to maintain those, which are commonly called the tory principles.
In the line of morality or policy, no action can be justified that is not reducible to some
act made in the same year, intituled, An alt for appro. priating certain duties for paying the fates general of the united provinces their charges for his mojesty's expedition into this kingdom, and for other uses; and the astings of the Jaid well-affected fubjeéts in aid and pursuance of the said enterprize.
true principle; I have, therefore, endeavoured to shew, upon what principles the revolution was effected, and upon what principles its consequences are still cherished and maintained. But as in all political disquisitions, this memorable event is constantly resorted to by all parties, even for the most opposite purposes, I shall attempt to delineate its naked portrait, without the incumbrance or disguise of the slightest drapery. The nearer we approach to truth, the more our ideas become simplified. Although it be true, that the act of the majority of a community must ever conclude and bind the whole; yet it is not to be suppofed, that even the unexceptionable and universal assent or act of any society of human beings, is necessarily free from the effects of those passions, to some of which each one of the community is liable. When I speak of the binding effect or coercive obligation of these acts, I speak only of such moral or indifferent acts, as each individual would, independently of the community, be at liberty to perform.
Wherever the end is lawful, the necessary means to attain that end are also lawful. As each individual has not only the transcendent and indefeasible right, but also the îtrideít moral obligation of adopting that
The right and obligation of in. dividuals, and of the community, to adopt what they think the true religion.
form of religious worship, which he thinks most agreeable to his creator, so have the community collectively, both the same right and the fame obligation; and whenever the majority of the community shall have so concurred in the adoption of a religion, the maintenance and preservation of it stand upon the same principles of right and obligation. At the time of the revolution, the majority of the community did, as at this day they do, hold the free enjoyment of the protestant religion, as their first and most important liberty: they knew themselves to be under a Roman Catholic sovereign; and their rooted dilike to that religion made them look upon The dislike and every imprudent exertion, as well as illegal the real immestretch of the prerogative, as a direct attempt to introduce and establish what they called popery, upon the destruction and ruin of the protestant religion. Whether this judgment of our ancestors were true or justifiable, it matters litele for me to examine; it certainly was the judginent of the majority, and, therefore, if any individuals did not chuse to submit to its effects, they had the liberty to quit the society, but not to resist or oppose the act of the majority. * « The idea,”
diate cause of the revolution,
Black. Com. b. i. c. 3.