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what can you expect from North America ? for certainly, if ever there was a country qualified to produce wealth, it is India ; or an institution fit for the transmission, it is the East India Company. America has none of these aptitudes. If America gives you taxable objects on which you lay your duties here, and gives you, at the same time, a surplus by a foreign sale of her commodities to pay the duties on these objects which you tax at home, she has performed her part to the British revenue. But with regard to her own internal establishments, she may, I doubt not she will, contribute in moderation; I say in moderation, for she ought not to be permitted to exhaust herself. She ought to be reserved to a war, the weight of which, with the enemies that we are most likely to have, must be considerable in her quarter of the globe. There she may serve you, and serve you essentially.
For that service, for all service, whether of revenue, trade or empire, my trust is in her interest in the British Constitution. My hold of the colonies is in the close affection which grows from common names, from kindred blood, from similar privileges, and equal protection. These are ties which, though light as air, are as strong as links of iron. Let the colonies always keep the idea of their civil rights associated with your government; they will cling and grapple to you, and no force under heaven will be of power to tear them from their allegiance. But let it be once understood that your government may be one thing, and their privileges another; that these two things may exist without any mutual relation; the cement is gone ; the cohesion is loosened; and everything hastens to decay and dissolution. As long as you have the wisdom to keep the sovereign authority in this country as the sanctuary of liberty, the sacred temple consecrated to our common faith, wherever the chosen race and sons of England worship Freedom, they will turn their faces toward you. The more they multiply, the more friends you will have. The more ardently they love liberty, the more perfect will be their obedience. Slavery they can have anywhere. It is a weed that grows in every soil. They may have it from Spain ; they may have it from Prussia ; but, until you become lost to all feeling of your true interest and your natural dignity, freedom they can have from none but you. This is the commodity of price, of which you have -the monopoly. This is the true Act of Navigation, which binds
to you the commerce of the colonies, and through them secures to you the wealth of the world. Deny them this participation of freedom, and you break that sole bond which originally made, must still preserve, the unity of the Empire. Do not entertain so weak an imagination as that your registers and your bonds, your affidavits and your sufferances, your cockets and your clearances, are what form the great securities of your commerce. Do not dream that your letters of office, and your instructions, and your suspending clauses, are the things that hold together the great contexture of this mysterious whole. These things do not make your government. Dead instruments, passive tools as they are, it is the spirit of the English communion that gives all their life and efficacy to them. It is the spirit of the English Constitution, which, infused through the mighty mass, pervades, feeds, unites, invigorates, vivifies every part of the Empire, even down to the minutest member.
Is it not the same virtue which does everything for us here in England ?
Do you imagine, then, that it is the Land Tax which raises your revenue ? that it is the annual vote in the Committee of Supply, which gives you your army? or that it is the Mutiny Bill, which inspires it with bravery and discipline ? No! surely no! It is the love of the people ; it is their attachment to their government, from the sense of the deep stake they have in such a glorious institution, which gives you your army and your navy, and infuses into both that liberal obedience, without which your army would be a base rabble, and your navy but rotten timber.
All this, I know well enough, will sound wild and chimerical to the profane herd of those vulgar and mechanical politicians, who have no place among us; a sort of people who think that nothing exists but what is gross and material, and who, therefore, far from being qualified to be directors of the great movement of Empire, are not fit to turn a wheel in the machine. But to men truly initiated and rightly taught, these ruling and master principles, which, in the opinion of such men as I have mentioned, have no substantial existence, are in truth everything and all in all. Magnanimity in politics is not seldom the truest wisdom ; and a great Empire and little minds go ill together. If we are conscious of our situation, and glow with zeal to fill our places as becomes our station and ourselves,
we ought to auspicate all our public proceedings on America with the old warning of the Church, sursum corda! We ought to elevate our minds to the greatness of that trust to which the order of Providence has called us. By adverting to the dignity of this high calling, our ancestors have turned a savage wilderness into a glorious empire, and have made the most extensive and the only honourable conquests, not by destroying but by promoting, the wealth, the number, the happiness of the human race. Let us get an American revenue as we have got an American empire. English privileges have made it all that it is ; English privileges alone will make it all it can be.
In full confidence of this unalterable truth, I now, quod felix faustumque sit, lay the first stone in the temple of peace; and I move you:
THAT THE COLONIES AND PLANTATIONS OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTH AMERICA, CONSISTING OF FOURTEEN SEPARATE GOVERNMENTS, AND CONTAINING TWO MILLION AND UPWARDS OF FREE INHABITANTS, HAVE NOT HAD THE LIBERTY AND PRIVILEGE OF ELECTING AND SENDING ANY KNIGHTS AND BURGESSES, OR OTHERS, TO REPRESENT THEM IN THE HIGH COURT OF PARLIAMENT.
Pitt's qualifications as an orator were moral as well as intellectual. He had a lofty command of sonorous rhetoric. But he had also the high courage and unquenchable spirit before which all difficulties disappear. He spoke for the purpose of removing obstacles, and also of inspiring the ardour by w which alone they could be removed. Although he seldom spoke outside the House of Commons, the effect of his speeches was felt far beyond the walls of Parliament. It was not merely because they were his that they succeeded. The influence of his energy and character was both powerful and extensive. But besides that he possessed the art of making the House of Commons believe that the country was safe under his guidance, and that against every danger he would provide a safeguard. Pitt's astonishing command of language was no merely verbal endowment. He would have been a singularly capable debater if he had not been otherwise qualified as a statesman. No point in an argument escaped him. Yet, all the time that he was dealing with objections, and replying to critics, he did not for a moment forget that he must, if he was to carry out his purposes, inspire his hearers with the confidence he felt himself. Even at the height of his power he was not always successful, and he was unable to carry Parliamentary Reform, of which, till the French Revolution, he continued a zealous advocate, though he never made it a question involving the fate of his government. Not once was he driven to resign by an adverse majority. In 1785, a few months after he became Prime Minister, he appealed to the country, which sustained him. In 1801 he retired for a time from office because the King would not allow him to propose a Catholic Emancipation Bill. He would have established free trade with Ireland at the beginning of his first administration if he
had not been frustrated by the Irish Parliament, where he could not speak. His ascendency at St. Stephen's, due to many qualities, cannot be separated from the style of his speeches, which was carefully adapted to the process of moral, as well as intellectual, persuasion.
To make members feel as he felt might be described as Pitt's great object. He wished not simply to convince them by argument, but also to inspire them with his own perfect confidence in the wisdom and justice of his cause. It might, perhaps, be said that in some respects Pitt was stronger in theory than in practice. His financial statement of 1798, made at the height of the great French war, is a philosophical disquisition upon public economy which, though mainly designed to justify the income-tax, has permanent interest and value to students as well as to statesmen. Pitt's administrative efficiency was confined to the days of peace, and consisted rather in the choice of subordinates than in the provision of means. But to the day of his death he never lost his hold upon the House of Commons. There he could always rouse the hopes and the confidence of his hearers by exhibiting his own dauntless resolution in appropriate speech. It was not that he always carried his point. Fox prevented him from undertaking hostilities against Russia on behalf of Turkey, when Catherine threatened the Crimea. Fox had no majority. Public opinion was for once too strong for Pitt, even in the arena of his triumphs, and the citadel of his power.
But it is not by a single instance here or there that the position of a great statesman in the House of Commons can be tested or weighed. The effect of Pitt's oratory must be judged by the results which it enabled him to accomplish throughout his Parliamentary career. Of these the greatest is that through times of peace and times of war he could retain the confidence of the House, whatever happened out of doors. He sometimes had to explain what was almost incapable of explanation. He had to confront adroit and