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before the Assembly of Massachusetts, who had suffered a loss of property in by Governor Bernard, a man of morose their adherence to the Stamp Act; but haughty temper, and specially out of they refused to carry into execution place just at this juncture in Massachu- the act of Parliament for quartering
Mr. Grahame characterizes his his majesty's troops upon them, on accourse towards the Assembly, as inso- count of a clause which they declared lent and overbearing; the Assembly, of involved the principle of taxation. course, could not submit to anything of The exultation in America over the the kind. The language of Bernard's repeal of the Stamp Act soon subsided. communication in regard to the voting Men began to scan more narrowly the money to the sufferers by the late dis- meaning of that fatal clause declaring turbances was: “The justice and hu- the absolute power of Parliament over manity of this requisition is so forcible, the colonies, and they began to rememthat it cannot be controverted; the ber afresh the causes of grievance authority with which it is introduced which had led to the late disturbances. should preclude all disputation about Heretofore they had not been called it.” In reply to language of this kind, upon to take united action in any great the House observed, “That it was con
matter in which the interests of each and
Wero terms in the speech than in the letter to this date, there had been no wideof the secretary.
Whether in thus spread agitation on topics of common exceeding, your excellency speaks by importance to all; and the fires of popyour own authority, or a higher, is not ular eloquence had not been kindled with us to determine. However, if this and fanned into a blaze of light, until recommendation, which your excellency the attempt had been made to coerce terms a requisition, be founded on so the colonies into submission to taxation much justice and humanity that it can- without representation. Disputes and not be controverted; if the authority dissensions between those nearly and with which it is introduced should pre- closely allied, almost always leave clude all disputation about complying rankling hurts in the minds of both with it, we should be glad to know parties, even after the fullest reconciliawhat freedom we have in the case." tion; for the nature of man is such, Compensation was not made to the that he is very likely to brood over sufferers in Massachusetts until Decem- the causes of complaint which before ber, 1766; and then in a manner and existed, and, thinking that perhaps he on conditions highly displeasing to the has not after all received quite his due, British government; the act for that he is ready without much persuasion, purpose also containing “free and gen- with only a slight moving cause, to reeral pardon, indemnity, and oblivion, new the dispute even more fiercely than to all offenders in the late times." In ever. England had acted foolishly New York, the Legislature, by a volun- and ignorantly; the colonies had retary act, granted compensation to those sisted determinedly; England gave
STATESMEN AND ORATORS OF THE DAY.
way; but she did it very ungraciously, and the elegance of his wit, than reand deprived her relinquishment of the spected for the simplicity and integrity. present claim to impose a tax of all its of his character; Peyton Randolph, real value by coupling with it an asser- whose high repute and influence with tion of the absolute power of Parlia- his countrymen, unaided by the captiment to bind the colonies in all cases vation of eloquence, was founded on whatsoever. The Americans could not qualities more honorable both to him but notice this, and the popular leaders and to them, the solid powers of his were far too astute not to point out understanding and the sterling virtues the discrepancy between giving up a of his heart; and Richard Henry Lee, claim and asserting a power to maintain one of the most accomplished scholars this same claim at any moment Parlia- and orators in America, and who was ment chose.
commonly styled the Virginian Cicero. The influence exerted by many emi. Washington, who, since the reduction nent statesmen and orators of the day of Fort Duquesne, in 1758, had withwill justify our speaking of them more drawn from military life, and never fully in this place; and in doing so, we quitted his domestic scene but to disshall use the language of Mr. Grahame, charge the duties of a member of the who writes with mingled enthusiasm Virginia Assembly, now calmly but and admiration of our patriot sires. firmly espoused the cause of his native
The most remarkable of the polit- country in opposition to the pretensions ical leaders and orators who sprung up of the British Government; nor was at this period were natives of Virginia, there an individual more respected in Massachusetts, and South Carolina. In Virginia, or more generally known and Virginia, there were particularly dis- esteemed by all America, than himself; tinguished, after Patrick Henry, whom but, devoid of oratorical powers, tranwe have already repeatedly noticed, quil, sedate, prudent, dignified, and reand who held the first place as a popu- served, he was little qualified by genius lar champion and favorite, Edmund or habit to make a brilliant figure as a Pendleton, a graceful and persuasive provincial politician, and waited the speaker, a subtle and dexterous poli- development of a grander scene of tician, energetic and indefatigable in the counsel and action, more adapted to the conduct of business; Richard Bland, illustration of his majestic wisdom and celebrated for the extent and accuracy superior sense. Various other individof his knowledge, unrivalled among uals, who have gained renown as dehis contemporaries as a logician, and fenders of the liberty and founders of who published this year an Inquiry the independence of America, began, into the Rights of the British Colonies, shortly after this period, to be distinin which the recent claims of America guished in the list of Virginian poliwere defended with much cogency of ticians; of whom the most remarkable reasoning; George Wythe, not more was Thomas Jefferson, preëminent as a admired for the strength of his capacity statesman, scholar, and philosopher; a
forcible, perspicuous, and elegant writer; Quincy, Jr., and Robert Treat Paine, an intrepid and enterprising patriot; lawyers; and John Winthrop, Professor and an ardent and inflexible asserter of of Mathematics in Harvard College. republican sentiments and the principles Samuel Adams was one of the most of purest democracy. None of his con- perfect models of disinterested patriottemporaries exceeded him in politeness ism, and of republican genius and charand benignity of manner; and few ap- acter in all its severity and simplicity, proached him in earnestness of temper that any age or country has ever proand firmness of purpose.
duced. At Harvard College, in the combination of moral qualities enhanced year 1743, he made an early display of the efficacy of his talent and genius, those political sentiments which he and greatly contributed to the ascend cherished through life, by maintaining, ant he obtained over the minds of his in the thesis which gained him his countrymen. From the very dawn of literary degree, that “it is lawful to the controversy between Britain and resist the supreme magistrate, if the America, Jefferson, and his friend and commonwealth cannot otherwise be prepatron, Wythe, outstripped the political served.” A sincere and devout Puritan views of most of the contemporary in religion, grave in his manners, austereAmerican patriots, and embraced the ly pure in his morals, simple, frugal, doctrine which ascribed indeed to the and unambitious in his tastes, habits, crown some prerogative, but denied to and desires ; zealously, and incorruptthe Parliament any degree or species ibly devoted to the defence of American of legitimate control over America. liberty, and the improvement of Ame Arthur, the brother of Richard Henry ican character; endowed with a strong, Lee, and afterwards ambassador from manly understanding, an unrelaxing America to France, was at this time earnestness and inflexible firmness of pursuing the study of the law in Lon- will and purpose, a capacity of patient don, but more actively engaged, as a and intense application which no labor gratuitous coadjutor of Dr. Franklin, could exhaust, and a calm and deterin watching the measures of the British mined courage which no danger could government; and rendered important daunt and no disaster depress,—he renservice to his countrymen by transmit- dered his virtues more efficacious by ting early intelligence of the ministerial the instrumentality of great powers of plans and purposes.
reasoning and eloquence, and altogether In Massachusetts, at the present supported a part and exhibited a charepoch, the most distinguished popular acter of which every description, even leaders and champions of the cause of the most frigid that has been preserved, America were James Otis, who has al- wears the air of panegyric. He deready engaged our observation; Samuel fended the liberty of his countrymen Adams, John Hancock, Thomas Cush- against the tyranny of England, and ing, and James Bowdoin, merchants; their religious principles against the Samuel Cooper, a clergyman; Josiah impious sophistry of Paine. His moral
SAMUEL ADAMS AND JOHN HANCOCK.
sentiments ever mingled with his polit- yet he ruled the wealth which comical views and opinions; and his con- monly rules its possessors; for, while stant aim was rather to deserve the he indulged a gay disposition in elegant esteem of mankind by honesty and and expensive pleasures, he manifested virtue, than to obtain it by supple com- a generous liberality in the most munipliance and flattery. Poor without ficent contributions to every charitable desiring to be rich, he subsequently and patriotic purpose; insomuch that filled the highest offices in the State his fellow-citizens declared of him, that of Massachusetts, without making the he plainly preferred their favor to great slightest augmentation to his fortune; riches, and embarked his fortune in the and after an active, useful, and illustri- | cause of his country.
cause of his country. Courteous and ous life, in which all the interests of the graceful in his address, eager and enindividual were merged in regard and thusiastic in his disposition, endowed care for the community, he died with with a prompt and lively eloquence, out obtaining or desiring any other re- which was supported by considerable ward than the consciousness of virtue abilities, though not united with briland integrity, the contemplation of his liant genius or commanding capacity, country's happiness, and the respect he embraced the popular cause with and veneration of his fellow-citizens. the most unbridled ardor; and leavIt has been censoriously remarked of ing to more philosophical patriots the him by the severer critics of his history guardianship of public virtue and the —and the censure is the more interest-control of popular license, he devoted ing from the rarity of its application to himself exclusively to the promotion the statesmen of modern times,—that of whatever objects tended immediately his character was superior to his genius, to gratify the wishes of the majority and that his mind was much more of the people.
of the people. He continued to hope elevated and firm than liberal and ex- for a reconciliation with Britain much pansive. In all his sentiments, religious longer than Adams, who, after the proand political, no doubt, there appeared mulgation of the Stamp Act, neither some tincture of those peculiar princi- expected nor desired such an issue ples and qualities which formed the but when, in consequence of the final original and distinctive character of the rupture between the two countries, and people of New England; and he was the overthrow of regal dominion in much more impressed with the worth America, a republican constitution was and piety, than sensible of or superior to be composed, --Adams showed him to the narrow, punctilious bigotry and self the more desirous to secure an enstubborn self-will of his provincial an-ergetic government, in which the magis
trates, though appointed by the choice Hancock differed widely from Adams of the people, should be invested with in manners, character, and condition. force enough to withstand unreasonable He was possessed of an ample fortune, or unrighteous movements of popular and maintained a splendid equipage; 1 passion and caprice,—while Hancock
preferably advocated an unbounded was opposed not more to civil than scope to democratical principle, or ra- to religious liberty. From that period, ther license, in a government pliable he took an active part in behalf of the to every gust of popular will. Adams liberties of his country, both as a conwas termed the Cato, and Hancock the tributor of political essays to the periLucullus, of New England. Among odical publications of Boston, and as a the first generations of the inhabitants correspondent of Dr. Franklin. He of this country, the severer virtue of was eminent as a scholar, and ardent Adams, in competition with the gayer as a patron and coadjutor of every character of Hancock, would have car institution for the advancement of ried almost all the suffrages of their learning, liberty, piety, or virtue; and, fellow-citizens; and even at no distant doubtless, his previous character as a date retrospective from the present divine contributed to promote the effiera, the manners of Hancock would cacy of his exertions as a politician. have been rather tolerated and par- Quincy, a distinguished lawyer and doned, than generally approved. But orator, the descendant of one of those a change, gradually arising in the taste English barons who extorted from and opinion of the public, had latterly King John the signature of Magna been so widely developped, that Han- Charta, showed that the spirit discock was now by far the most popular played by his ancestor at Runnymede character in Massachusetts. He was, was transmitted to him, unimpaired by indeed, the idol of the great mass of the the eclipse of family grandeur and the people, and openly preferred to Adams lapse of five centuries. He was the by all but a small minority of the com- protomartyr of American liberty, in munity, consisting of stanch Puritans defence of which, both with his tongue and stern republicans.
and pen, he exerted an energy so disCushing was less distinguished by proportioned to his bodily strength, as energy or talent than by his descent to occasion his death a short time prefrom a family renowned in New Eng- vious to the Declaration of American land for ardent piety and liberal pol- Independence. Robert Treat Paine, itics. Bowdoin, one of the wealthiest one of the most eminent lawyers in persons in Massachusetts, was also a | Massachusetts, held a high place in the man of great information and ability, public estimation for intelligence, firmregulated by strong good sense; liberal, ness, and zeal. Ever prompt, active, honorable, and upright; a prudent and and decided as a champion of American moderate, but firm and consistent pat- liberty, he was universally admired for riot. Cooper, pious, eloquent, and ac- the brilliancy of his wit, and respected complished, was first prompted to unite even by his political opponents for his the character of a politician with the pure and inflexible uprightness. Winoffice of a minister of the Gospel by the throp, who inherited one of the most tidings of the Stamp Act, which sug- venerable names in New England, re. gested to him, he declared, that tyranny vived its ancient honor and still farther