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An opportunity for this purpose was taken, upon an application to parliament for payment of the debts of the civil list; which in 1769 had amounted to 513,000l. Such application had been made upon former occasions; but to do it in the former manner would by no means answer the prelent purpose.
The civil lift debt was twice paid in the reign of George I. George II. received an addition to his civil lift. Duties were granted for the purpose of raising 800,000 l, a year. It was not until he had reigned nineteen years, and after the last rebellion, that he called upon parliament for a discharge of the civil lift debt. There was a considerable lum in hand, on his decease, amounting to about 170,000l. applicable to the service of the civil lift of his present Majesty. The throne of no prince has stood upon more unhaken foundations than that of his present Majesty.
- The nation had settled 800,000l. a year on the crown, as sufficient for the support of its dignity, upon the estimate of its own ministers. When minifters came to parliament, and said that this allowance had not been sufficient for the purpose, and that they had incurred a debt of 500,000 l. would it not have been natural for parliament first to have asked, liow, and by what means, their appropriated allowance came to be insufficient
When every leading account had been refused, many others were granted with sufficient facility. But with great candour allo, the house was informed, that hardly any of them could be ready until the next leilion ; some of them perhaps not so foon. But, in order firmly to establish the precedent of payment previous 10 eccount, and to form it into a settled rule of the houie, the god in the machine was brought down, nothing less than the wonderworking law of parliament. It was therefore carried, that they thould go into the committee without delay, and without accounts, in order to examine with great order and regularity things that could not possibly come before them. After this Itroke of orderly and parliamentary wit and humour, they went into the committee and very generously voted the payment.
. In the speech froin the throne, after thanking parliament for the relief fo liberally granted, the ministers inform the two houses, that they will ende avour to confine the expences of civil govern. ment-within what limits think you? Those which the law had prescribed ? Not in the least, " such limits as the honour of the “ croren cın poflibly admit."
In rich a strait the witelt may well be perplexed, and the boldelt Baggered. The circumitances are in a great measure new. We have bardly any land-marks from the wisdom of our ancestors, to guide us.--The first ideas which generally tuggest themselves, for the cure of parliamentary ditorders, are, to thorten the duration of parliaments; and to disquality all, or a great number of placemen, from a seat in the house of commons. Whatever efficacy there may be in those remedies, I am sure in the prelent state of things it is impossible to apply them. A reitoration of the right of free election is a preliminary indifpentable to every other reformation What alterations ought afterwards to be made in the constitution, is a inatter of deep and dithicult reiearch.-I confess, that I have no sort of reliance upon either a triennial parliament, or a place-bill. With regard to the former, perhaps it might rather lerve to coun. teract, than to proinote the ends that are proposed by it. To say nothing of the horrible disorders among the people attending fre. quent elections, I thould be fearful of committing, every three
5 years years, the independent gentienien of the country into a contest with the treasury. It is ealy to see which of the contending parties would be ruined first.
• The next favourite remedy is a place-bill. It is not easy to fore. see what the effect would be, of disconnecting with parliament, the greatest part of those who hold civil employments, and of such mighty and important bodies as the military and naval establishments. It were better, perhaps, that they should have a corrupt interest in the forms of the constitution, than that they should have none at all. It were better, undoubtedly, that no influence at all could affect the mind of a member of parliament. But of all modes of influence, in my opinion, a place under the government is the least disgraceful to the man who holds it, and by far the most safe to the country. I would not shut out that fort of influence which is open and visible, which is connected with the dignity and the service of the state, when it is not in my power to prevent the influence of contracts, of subscriptions, of direct bribery, and those innumerable methods of clandestine corruption, which are abundantly in the hands of the court, and which will be applied as long as thele means of corruption and the disposition to be corrupted, have existence amongit us.
"The distempers of Monarchy were the great subjects of apprehension and redress, in the last century ; in this the distein pers of Parliament.-An exterior administration, chosen for its impo. tency, or after it is cholen purposely rendered impotent, in order to be rendered subservient, will not be obeyed. The laws them. selves will not be respected when those who execute them are de. Spised; and they will be despised, when their power is not immediare from the crown, or natural in the kingdom
. Government may in a great measure be restored, if any confiderable bodies of men have honesty and resolution enough never to accept administration, unless this garricon of king's men, which is stationed, as in a citadel, to controul and enslave it, be entirely broken and disbanded, and every work they have thrown up be levelled with the ground. The difpofition of public men to keep this corps together, and to act under it, or to co-operate with it, is a touchstone by which every administration ought in future to be tried.
• Party is a body of men united, for promoting by their joint en. deavours the national interest, upon some particular principle in which they are all agreed. For my part, I find it impossible to conceive, that any one believes in his own politicks, or thinks thein to be of any weight, who refuses to adopt the means of having them reduced into practice. It is the business of the speculative philosopher to mark the proper ends of government. It is the butiness of the politician, who is the philosopher in action, to find out proper means towards those ends, and to employ them with effect. Therefore every honourable connexion will avow it as their first purpose, to pursue every just method to put the men who hold their opinions into such a condition as may enable them to carry their common plans into execution, with all the power and authority of the state. A generous contention for power, on such manly and honourable maxims, will easily be distinguished from the mean and interested struggle for place and emolument.In order to throw an odium on political connexion, these politicians suppose it a necessary incident to it, that you are blindly to follow the opinions of your party when in direct opposition to your own clear ideas; a degree of servitude X 3
that no worthy man could bear the thought of submitting to. But fill, as the greater part of the measures which arise in the course of public business are related to, or dependent on, some great leading general principles in government, a man muft be peculiarly unforfu. nate in the choice of his political company, if he does not agree with them at least nine times in ten. I remember an old scholastic aphorism, which says, “ that the man who lives wholly detached from others, must be either an angel or a devil.” It is not every conjuncture which calls with equal force upon the activity of honeft men ; but critical exigencies now and then arise; and I am miftaken, if this be not one of them. Men will see the necessity of honest combination; but they may fee it when it is too late.-If other ideas thould prevail, things must remain in their present confusion; until they are hurried into all the rage of civil violence ; or until they link into the dead repose of despotism.'
Such is the substance of this celebrated pamphlet. The stile throughout is polished; the author has abstained from personal abuse, and though inanifestly a party writer, he has kept his passions within due bounds, to such a degree, that it may be said, he has not only expressed himself with grace, but he has also thought with elegance, even ypon a subject the most apt to incitę animosity. It is however a composition visibly framed in the ROCKINGHAM School. The feeble administration of that nobleman is complimented beyond all proportion ; and, if we did not know the men who were in office under his auspices, we might imagine there was then a constellation of worthies equal to any period of Greek or Roman history. If it be true, as our author says it is, that an interior and invisible administration, consisting of King's Men, has been established from the beginning of the present reign, we must concur with this wriver in pronouncing it a pernicious system of politics ; because it habituates the I n to rule by party, by dividing and subdividing, and perhaps sometimes by dissimulation, But yet, can this be the sole cause of the discontents that have prevailed for some time? Certainly not. Who was the origi. nal author of an American stamp-act? The contagion of sedition has come over to us from the colonies. Who inflamed the colonies against the mother country? Did that minister consult in the Dove Le CABINET ? - As we are told that the men who acted with L- R -m carried with ihem into place the principles which ebey possessed in opposition, it may be fair to ask, why did not they obtain a pardon for Mr. Wilkes ? It is too plain that they looked on during all the sufferings of that gentleman : they disowned him; they were afraid of seemiog connected with him or his cause; till at last they saw his popularity, and availed themselves of it.In mort, when our author tells us, that the Junto Of King's Men are the fource of all disorders, he is like the man in the play, who imputes every species of misconduct to our not bavirg learned to dance !
MONTHLY MONTHLY CATALOGU E. 12. A Leiter 10 the right bon. William Beckford, Lord. Mayor,
and Conservator of the River Thames and Waters of Medway: from Sir Stephen Theodore Janfien, Bart. Chamberlain of
London. 410. Iso Wilkie. . THE advantages accruing to the trade and commerce of the
city of London, the emporium of the British empire, from its happy situation and vicinity to the river Thames, has, for ages past, rendered the conservation and good order of that noble stream, the first object of public attention; insomuch, that when king James I. upon some disgust, signified his intention of removing the records from the Tower, he received the following answer ;'“ Your majesty may in this, as in every other cir. cumstance do as you please, and your faithful citizens of London will obey accordingly; we only beseech your majesty, upon the removing the records, to leave the river of Thaines behind you.'
In this letter, addressed to the right honourable William Beckford, esq. lord-mayor, fir Stephen Theodore Janssen has, with great good sense and becoming respect, submitted to his lordship's consideration several very important points relating to the conservation of the Thames and Medway: with regard to the intended embankation of the former, Mr. Janssen very justly observes, that should these embankments so far encrease the velocity of the stream, as to carry down the sandbanks to London-bridge, together with all the other species of filih from both Mores, will the undertakers make it very clearly appear, that it shall neither stop up the arches, or settle in the Pool, or otherwise, in any respect, impede the general navigation ? If this could be assured, all else would be very well; but if these banks must lodge somewhere near the bridge, they are in a better situation at present than they can be by a removal; as they are not any real impediments to boats, but may be fo to the passage of the bridge, or to the ships in the Pool, whersfore it must remain a doubt, whether if the bed of the ri. ver, by the means proposed, deepened above-bridge, it may not be the cause of more mischief than it cures? The rulers of the watermen's company are necessary to be consulted, efpecially such as use lighters or barges ; experience and observation will furnith them with the means of conjectural consequences : it is at best but conjectural, and therefore to be well guarded against, as a failure in the event is almost irrecover: able, and as it is not impracticable to remove the sand-banks at much less expence.
13. The Remonftrarcei A Poem. 4to. Pr. 21, 6d. Wheble.
This is one of the few good poems that have been written in defence of the administration. The author attacks, with great freedom, some of the principal leaders in the opposition, whom he represents as impious, feditious, inconsistent, and void of all true principles of patriotism. Though it must be owned the drawing is not correct, yet, in many parts, the colouring is good, and the expression strong and vigorous.
Speaking of the contempt with which religion is treated by modern patriots, he observes,
" And yet there was a time, nor long ago
The chain of nature through unmeasured space ;
Gave laws to fix the vagrant will of man.' Our author expostulates with Mr. Wilkes on the indecency of traducing a certain great perfon, and brings it home to his own bosom, in the following spirited lines : *
Were there on earth a barbarous iniscreant found,
The seed of branching calumny supply ;
"Say, gallant Wilkes, wat vengeance wouldst thou claim