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11. “But if the wife should drink of it first,
God help the husband, then !”
And drank of the water again.
He to the Cornish-man said:
And sheepishly shook his head.
And left my wife in the porch ;
ELEGY ON MADAM BLAIZE.
1. Good people all, with one accord,
Lament for Madam Blaize;
From those who spoke her praise.
And always found her kind;
Who left a + pledge behind.
With manner wondrous winning:
Unless when she was sinning.
With + hoop of monstrous size,
But when she shut her eyes.
By twenty beaux, or more;
When she has walked before.
Her +hangers-on cut short all,
Her last disorder mortal.
For Kent-street well may say,
LESSON XCVII.S Y
ON THE AMERICAN WAR.
1. I CAN NOT, my lords, I will not, join in congratulation on misfortune and disgrace. This, my lords, is a + perilous and tremendous moment. It is not a time for + adulation : the smoothness of flattery can not save us, in this rugged and awful crisis. It is now necessary to instruct the throne in the language of truth. We must, if possible, dispel the + delusion and darkness which envelop it; and display, in its full danger and genuine colors, the ruin which is brought to our doors.
2. Can parliament be so dead to its true dignity and duty, as to give their support to measures thus + obtruded and forced upon them? Measures, my lords, which have reduced this late fourishing empire to scorn and contempt ! “But yesterday, and Britain might have stood against the world ; now, none so poor to do her reverence.” The people whom we at first despised as rebels, but whom we now acknowledge as enemies, are fabetted against us, supplied with every military store, have their interest consulted, and their embassadors entertained by our + inveterate enemy; and ministers do not, and dare not, interpose with dignity or effect.
3. The desperate state of our army abroad is in part known. No man more highly esteems or honors the British troops, than I do.
I know their virtues and their valor. I know they can + achieve any thing but impossibilities; and I know that the conquest of British America is an impossibility. You can not, my lords, you can not conquer America. What is your present situation there? We do not know the worst; but we know that in three campaigns we have done nothing, and suffered much. You may swell every expense, accumulate every assistance, and extend your traffic to the + shambles of every German despot : your attempts will be forever + impotent; doubly so, indeed, from this + mercenary aid on which you rely; for it irritates, to an incurable resentment, the minds of your adversaries, to overrun them with the mercenary sons of rapine and plunder, devoting them and their possessions to the + rapacity of hireling cruelty. If I were an American, as I am an Englishman, while a foreign troop was landed in my country, I never would lay down my arms; never NEVER-NEVER!
4. But, my lords, who is the man, that, in addition to the disgraces and mischief of the war, has dared to authorize and associate to our arms, the tomahawk and scalping-knife of the savage ?
to call into civilized + alliance, the wild and inhuman inhabitant of the woods ? to delegate to the merciless Indian the defense of disputed rights, and to wage the horrors of his barbarous war against our brethren ? My lords, these tenormities cry aloud for redress and punishment. But, my lords, this barbarous measure has been defended, not only on the principles of policy and necessity, but also on those of morality : " for it is perfectly allowable, says Lord Suffolk, “ to use all the means which God and nature have put into our hands.” I am astonished, I am shocked, to hear such principles confessed; to hear them avowed in this house, or in this country.
5. My lords, I did not intend to tencroach so much on your attention, but I can not repress my indignation: I feel myself impelled to speak. My lords, we are called upon, as members of this house, as men, as Christians, to protest against such horrible barbarity. “ That God and nature have put into our hands !” What ideas of God and nature that noble lord may entertain, I know not; but I know, that such detestable principles are equally + abhorrent to religion and humanity. What! to attribute the sacred sanction of God and nature to the massacres of the Indian scalping-knife! to the cannibal savage, torturing, murdering, DEVOURING, DRINKING THE BLOOD of his mangled victims ! Such notions shock every precept of morality, every feeling of humanity, every sentiment of honor. These abominable principles, and this more abominable avowal of them, demand the most decisive indignation.
6. I call upon that right reverend, and this most learned bench, to vindicate the religion of their God, to support the justice of their country
I call upon the bishops, to interpose their +unsul. lied + sanctity; upon the judges, to interpose the purity of their termine, to save us from this pollution. I call upon the honor of your lordships, to reverence the dignity of your ancestors, and to maintain your own. I call upon the spirit and humanity of my country, to vindicate the national character. I invoke the Genius of the Constitution. From the + tapestry that adorns these walls, the immortal ancestor of this noble lord frowns with indignation, at the disgrace of his country. In vain did he defend the liberty, and establish the religion of Britain, against the tyranny of Rome, if these worse than popish cruelties, and + inquisitorial practices, are endured among us. To end forth the merciless * cannibal, thirsting for blood! Against whom? Your protestant brethren! :-to lay waste their country, to desolate their dwellings, and + tirpate their race and name, by the aid and instrumentality of these horrible hounds of war.
7. Spain can no longer boast + pre-eminence in barbarity. She armed herself with bloodhounds, to extirpate the wretched natives
of Mexico; we, more + ruthless, loose the dogs of war against our countrymen in America, endeared to us by every tie than can sanctify humanity. I solemnly call upon your lordships, and upon every order of men in the state, to stamp upon this infamous procedure, the + indelible +stigma of the public abhorrence. More particularly, I call upon the holy + prelates of our religion, to do away this iniquity; let them perform a + lustration, to purify the country from this deep and deadly sin. My lords, I am old and weak, and at present unable to say more; but my feelings and indignation were too strong to have said less. I could not have slept this night in my bed, nor even reposed my head upon my pillow, without giving vent to my eternal abhorrence of such enormous and + preposterous principles.
LESSON XCVIII. 98
SUPPOSED SPEECH OF JOHN ADAMS.
Mr. WEBSTER, in a speech upon the life and character of John Adams, imagines some one opposed to the Declaration of Independence, to have stated his fears and objections before Congress, while deliberating on that subject. He then supposes Mr. Adams to have replied, in language like the following.
1. SINK or swim, live or die, survive or perish, I give my hand and my heart to this vote. It is true, indeed, that in the beginning, we aimed not at independence. But there is a divinity which shapes our ends. The injustice of England has driven us to arms; and blinded to her own interest, she has obstinately persisted, till independence is now within our grasp. We have but to reach forth to it, and it is ours. Why then should we defer the declaration ? Is any man so weak, as now to hope for a + reconciliation with England, which shall leave either safety to the country and its liberties, or security to his own life, and his own honor ? Are not you, sir, who sit in that chair,* is not he, our venerable + colleague, near you, ş are you not both, already the * proscribed and + predestined objects of punishment and of vengeance? Cut off from all hope of royal #clemency, what are you, what can you be, while the power of England remains, but outlaws ?
2. If we postpone independence, do we mean to carry on, or to give up the war?: Do we mean to submit, and consent that we shall be ground to powder, and our country and its rights trodden down in the dust? I know we do not mean to submit. We
* John Hancock.
& Samuel Adams.
NEVER shall submit! Do we intend to violate that most solemn obligation ever entered into by men, that plighting, before God, of our sacred honor to Washington, when, putting him forth to incur the dangers of war, as well as the political hazards of the times, we promised to adhere to him in every extremity, with our fortunes and our lives? I know there is not a man here, who would not rather see a general *conflagration sweep over the land, or an earthquake sink it, than one jot or tittle of that plighted faith fall to the ground. For myself, having twelve months ago, in this place, moved you, that George Washington be appointed commander of the forces raised, or to be raised for the defense of American liberty; may my right hand forget her cunning, and my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, if I hesitate or waver in the support I give him.
3. The war, then, must go on. We must fight it through. And if the war must go on, why put off the Declaration of Independence? That measure will strengthen us. It will give us character abroad. Nations will then treat with us, which they never can do, while we acknowledge ourselves subjects in arms against our sovereign. Nay, I maintain that England herself, will sooner treat for peace with us, on the footing of independence, than consent, by repealing her acts, to acknowledge that her whole conduct toward us has been a course of injustice and oppression. Her pride will be less wounded by submitting to that course of things, which now predestinates our independence, than by yielding the points in controversy to her rebellious subjects. The former, she would regard as the result of fortune; the latter, she would feel as her own deep disgrace. Why, then, do we not, as soon as possible, change this from a civil to a national war?' And sinco we must fight it through, why not put ourselves in a state to enjoy all the benefits of victory, if we gain the victory?
4. If we fail, it can be no worse for us. But we shall not fail. The cause will raise up armies; the cause will create navies. The people, the people, if we are true to them, will carry us, and will carry themselves, gloriously through this struggle. I care not how fickle other people have been found. I know the people of these colonies; and I know that resistance to British aggression, is deep and settled in their hearts, and can not be * eradicated. Sir, the Declaration of Independence will inspire the people with increased courage.
Instead of a long and bloody war for the restoration of privileges, for + redress of grievances, for chartered + immunities, held under a British king, set before them the glorious object of entire independence, and it will breathe into them anew the spirit of life.
5. Read this declaration at the head of the army; every sword will be drawn from its scabbard, and the solemn vow uttered to