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quate compensation. Thus London answers the end of every trade abroad, and of every internal manufacture; it exports, consumes, circulates, and expends; in fine, it is the very soul of commerce to every part of the British dominions and the colonies, at the same time that it may be said to give credit to all the world!
From the city have sprung the greatest and most illustrious of the British nobility; whilst the riches and patriotism of her merchants have often preserved the state, when involved in seemingly inextricable ruin. Let it be an additional encomium, that the great Elizabeth was a descendant from Sir Godfrey Bullen, Lord Mayor of London.
“ I am infinitely delighted,” says the enlightened Addison, “ in mixing with the several ministers of commerce, as they are distinguished by their different walks (on the Royal Exchange) and different languages; sometimes I am jostled among a body of Arminians ; sometimes I am lost in a crowd of Jews, and sometimes make one in a groupe of Dutchmen. I am a Dane, Swede, or Frenchman, at different times : or rather fancy myself like the old philosopher, who, upon being asked what countryman he was, replied, “ That he was a citizen of the world."
“ When I have been upon the 'Change,” continues this writer, “ I have often fancied one of our old kings standing in person, where he is represented in effigy, and looking down upon the wealthy concourse of people with which that place is every day filled. In this case how would he be surprised to hear all the languages of Europe spoken in this little spot of his former dominions; and to see so many private men who, in his time, would have been the vassals of some powerful baron,
negociating like princes, for greater sums of money than were formerly to be met with in the royal treasury."
It was a shrewd observation of Charles II. “ That the tradesmen were the only gentry in England.” This monarch had travelled sufficiently to be well acquainted with the world, and had observed, that a country without trade could only boast of needy nobility. In England the case was widely different. The English are a considerate, a thinking nation, and therefore learning and trade have been the two principal channels to nobility; so that the citizens of London, like the Tyrians of old, have justly arrived to the dignity of princes.
Having thus offered a few observations on the greatness of London, we will add to its dignity a glory in which it is singular ;-its Beneficence! The extent of its charitable contributions is unbounded; no city or nation can equal it for humanity. No species of distress exists, but the friendly hand of Benevolence is ready to alleviate the poignancy of the sufferer. Every avenue to the city is ornamented with structures sacred to the most benign of all virtues, Charity! The history of a metropolis like this, claims the
pens of the most exalted writers to do it ample justice. Our readers will therefore consider the labour we have undertaken ; and should any unavoidable mistakes arise, impute the error, not to carelessness or inattention, but to the magnitude of a work which is to describe the remote and recent history, the policy, grandeur, hospitality, population, &c. of the first metropolis in the world-a City without a parallel !
HE prescription of our subject, not permitting us to be
very diffuse concerning the remote history of this magnificent city, we deduce such concise materials only as are merely appropriate to our purpose, and a glance at etymology, therefore, must be sufficient. Cæsar, in his Commentaries, denominates it the chief city of the Trinobantes, which, with submission to higher anthority, is easily converted to Tre-yn-y-bant, describing the exact situation of the British town in the valley, the vale of London being certainly one of the most extensive in the British dominions, taking it from Brentwood to Windsor one way, and from Hampstead to the Surrey Hills another.
That London was originally a British town is undoubted; and although it might afterwards be dignified with the names of Londinium, Augusta, &c. it is very evident that the Romans, with the national spirit of all conquerors, affectel to bury British under Roman denominations; and we ar: led to assert this from the conviction, that had this been a town originally constructed by the Romans, they would certainly VOL. I. No...
have imposed upon it a Roman name. It is most probable therefore, that these conquerors finding a site which had been previously occupied, they necessarily continued the original British name, softened by a Roman termination.
Cæsar and Tacitus inform us, that the British towns were not scenes of regular and general residence; they were only their places of refuge amid the dangers of war, where they might occasionally lodge their wives, children, and cattle, and the weaker resist the stronger, till succours could arrive. These towns were planted in the centre of their woods, defended by the advantages of their position, and secured by a regular rampart and fosse. In their holds, they resisted the attacks of the best troops under the command of the most experienced officers in the world, and even gained from the latter, the repeated praise of excellent fortifications *.
As the Romans regularly extended their conquests, they appear to have equally erected stations for themselves, and cities for the Britons, thus Claudius constructed the cities of Glevum or Glouster, Colonia or Colchester, Augustæ Trinobantes, and other lesser places. By such means the success of the Roman arms was distinctly marked, and the face of the island of Britain gradually brightened up by the progress of cultivation. Thus the acts of civil life, and the sweets of social happiness superseded the rough genius of selfish policy.
In the mode of forming towns used by the Romans, their first object seems to have been to construct military ways, consistently with the ancient custom of making new roads, preparatory to the general's approach; hence the Scripture
•"Cognoscit non longè ex eo loco oppidam Cassivelauni abesse, sylvis palludibusque munitum ; quo satis magnus hominum pecorisque numerus convenerit. Oppidum autem Britanni vocant quum sylvas impeditas vallo atque fossâ munierunt. Locum reperit egregiè naturà atque opera munituin. Se in sylvas abdiderunt, locum nacti egregiè naturà et opere munitum,-quem-jam antè præparaverant."
By these and many other passages among the Latin authors, it will easily be allowed, that our British ancestors possessed more considerable skill in the art of fortification, than some historians are willing to grant them. Whitaker's Manchester, &c.