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JURIUS. tered about me. Ia
sie ferocity, which ennobled whatam torn up by the ror
under which vice itself lost half
nied in the Public Advertiser,
smus intervals, from 1769 to 1 have none to meet my
and published in various
The conjectures in my lord, I greatly dece
is have been very numerson I would give a peck
will afford some specimens called fame and honour
erciless sarcasm, of this
petite but of a few. It i
it is an indulgence for
g to draw a line the crown and
has yet only both objects
made to shrink from pail
It is an instinct; and unde
order. They who ought
posterity, are in the place o
that act of piety, which he
I owe it to him to show, the Duke of Bedford wn
age whilst it mitigated ferocity, which ennobled whatever it touched, and under which vice itself lost half its evils by losing all its grossness.
(1769-1772.) [The ablest writer of invective in the English Language is one whose real name is not and probably never will be known. The Letters signed JUNIUS were printed in the Public Advertiser, a popular London newspaper, at various intervals, from 1769 to 1772. They have since been collected and published in various shapes in almost innumerable editions. The conjectures in regard to the authorship of the letters have been very numer
The extracts which are given will afford some specimens of the finished style, as well as the merciless sarcasm, of this accomplished writer.)
The ministry, it seems, are labouring to draw a line of distinction between the honour of the crown and the rights of the people. This new idea has yet only been started in discourse; for, in effect, both objects have been equally sacrificed. I neither understand the distinction, nor what use the ministry propose to make of it. The king's honour is that of his people. Their real honour and real interest are the same. I am not contending for a vain punctilio. A clear unblemished character comprehends not only the integ. rity that will not offer, but the spirit that will not submit, to an injury; and whether it belongs to an individual or to a community, it is the foundation of peace,
of independence, and of safety. Private credit is wealth; public honour is security. The feather that adorns the royal bird supports his flight. Strip him of his plumage, and you fix him to the earth.
Injudiciousness of Prosecuting Mr. Wilkes. He said more than moderate inen would justify, but not enough to entitle him to your majesty's personal resentment. The rays of royal indignation, collected upon him, served only to illuminate, and could not con
Animated by the favour of the people on the one side, and heated by persecution on the other, his views and sentiments changed with his situation. Hardly serious at first, he is now an enthusiast. The coldest bodies warm with opposition, the hardest sparkle in collision. There is a holy mistaken zeal in politics as well as religion. By persuading others, we convince ourselves. The passions are engaged, and create a maternal affection in the mind, which causes us to love the cause for which we suffer.
Part of a Letter to the Duke of Grafton. The character of the reputed ancestors of some men has made it possible for their descendants to be vicious in the extreme, without being degenerate. Those of your Grace, for instance, left no distressing examples of virtue, even to their legitimate posterity; and you may look back with pleasure to an illustrious pedigree, in which heraldry has not left a single good quality
upon record to insult and upbraid you. You have better proofs of your descent, my lord, than the register of a marriage, or any troublesome inheritance of reputation. There are some hereditary strokes of character by which a family may be as clearly distinguished as by the blackest features of the human face. Charles I. lived and died a hypocrite; Charles II. was a hypocrite of another sort, and should have died upon the same scaffold.
At the distance of a century, we see their different characters happily revived and blended in your Grace. Sullen and severe without religion, profligate without gaiety, you live like Charles II., without being an amiable companion; and, for aught I know, may die as his father did, without the reputation of a martyr.
Part of a Letter to the Duke of Bedford. My lord, you are so little accustomed to receive any marks of respect or esteem from the public, that if in the following lines a compliment or expression of applause should escape me, I fear you would consider it as a mockery of your established character, and perhaps an insult to your understanding. You have nice feelings, my lord, if we may judge from your resentments. Cautious, therefore, of giving offence where you have so little deserved it, I shall leave the illustration of your virtues to other hands. Your friends have a privilege to play upon the easiness of your temper, or probably they are better acquainted with your good qualities than I am. You have done good by stealth. The rest is upon record. You have still