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that, had he had the people only to contend with, he would have relaxed in his ideas of supremacy. It was not with the people collectively, but the people formed into a refractory body under the Protector, that Charles contended, at first to assert his own limited views of plebeian power, at last to satisfy his roused feelings of pique. And when actually engaged in civil war, the Protector was the hydra for whose life Charles felt so keen a thirst.
“Aut Cæsar, aut nullus," was the Protector's maxim ; and Charles, with limited abilities, quickly fell a prey to the powerful man's superior cunning. Nevertheless, we cannot palliate that which must ever be a blot upon English history; Charles the First set law at defiance, and found military power a glorious, but an unsubstantial shadow.
Had Napoleon Bonaparte been actually plotting during the first disturbances of the state, the case would have been the same as that of Charles and the Protector. But the unhappy Louis seemed imbibed with the Nero wish of beholding all France in the light of an enemy. There was a feeling of moderation in the earliest part of the revolution, which might have served as a lesson to restore the king to his senses; but he mistook the moderation for cowardice, and forgot, that whereas men from the earliest history of the world were endued with a spirit for fighting, policy is an acquired principle, which grows with the world's growth, and cannot be quelled by the man king.
And behold, another monarch,* untaught by example, refusing advice, battling with the very laws he had made, restricting the liberty he had sworn to protect, endeavouring to rule by absolute monarchy, and to convert that monarchy into tyranny.
* Charles the Tenth.
Odious idea of sovereign might, to stake a nation's welfare on the chance of a victory or defeat in a civil
Readers, my historical researches so far are over; and those who deny the theory, or, to pay my power a worse compliment, cannot see its aim, let these not turn sceptically from one fact, that all rebellious monarchs are the weakest-minded, which shows us at once that the loftiest mind is the most ready to submit to useful government; and, as a general rule, to govern is to be governed in turn. Man's honour consists not in unlimited worship of self; the barriers of society and law will never be infringed, except for ambitious, tyrannic motives : a monarch ought never to count more upon the courage of his army than the sagacity of his politicians.
Oh! then, Politicians, look upon your country as a vast inheritance committed to
your charge, let Truth sway your principles, Honour your laws.
There is cowardice in making self the first consideration, when England is the mark whereon your eyes should turn. Patiently, diligently, and courageously follow the path which may not always lead to eminence or popularity, but bear in mind that as the million, countless of millions, grains of sand, consist actually of grain upon grain, so does voice upon voice constitute that great body—the Senate.