網頁圖片
PDF
ePub 版

2

on them to forget all duty and affection to others. As to the people's paying, it never can be done, nor is it just they should; nor would they ever agree to establish fixed salaries on governors, for the reasons you have mentioned.

It is truly discouraging to a people, who wish well to the mother country, and by their dutiful behaviour during these times of American confusion have recommended themselves to the crown, to have an application so honorable and beneficial to the latter so much neglected. Would the ministry coolly attend to the matter, it would certainly be otherwise. However, I am convinced, should the people once despair of the change, either the greatest confusion, or the consequence you have pointed out, will assuredly ensue.

Two regiments, commanded by Colonel Dalrymple, are arrived at Boston, and we learn the town is providing quarters for them; so that, I hope, the mischiefs, which some have thought would attend that measure, will not follow. Great pains have been taken in this city by some hotheaded, indiscreet men, to raise a spirit of violence against the late act of Parliament; but the design was crushed in its beginning by our friends so effectually, that, I think, we shall not soon have it renewed.*

Your continuance in London this winter gives the Assembly much satisfaction, as there is a great probability that American affairs will come before the pres

* Mr. Johnson, the agent in London from Connecticut, wrote to Governor Pitkin, on the 23d of July, as follows.

“ The intelligence relating to the commotions in Boston has been received here with equal concern and indignation. The impressions it at first made were surprising. The merchants were in fear for their property and their trade, the stocks fell greatly, and there seemed to be a general consternation; but indignation soon took place of every other sentiment, and all parties united in denouncing vengeance (as

ent Parliament, and they have the fullest confidence in you. My good friend, Governor Franklin, is now at Fort Stanwix with Sir William Johnson, where a treaty is holding respecting a general boundary. I have had a letter from him since his arrival there, and he is well. I write in much hurry, which will apologize for incorrectness. Believe me, my dear friend, with the most perfect esteem, &c.

JOSEPH GALLOWAY.

TO MISS MARY STEVENSON.

TO MISS MARY STEVENSON.
Prudential Advice.

London, October, 1768. I see very clearly the unhappiness of your situation, and that it does not arise from any fault in you. I pity you most sincerely. I should not, however, have thought of giving you advice on this occasion, if you had not requested it, believing, as I do, that your own good sense is more than sufficient to direct you in every point of duty to others and yourself. If, then, I should advise you to any thing, that may be contrary to your own opinion, do not imagine, that I shall condemn you if you do not follow such advice. I shall only think, that, from a better acquaintance with circumstances, you form a better judgment of what is fit for you to do.

they expressed it) against that insolent town. A Cabinct Council was immediately called, and they have sat several times since upon the subject. Their determinations have not yet transpired; but it is generally believed that troops and ships of war will be ordered out, to join those already supposed to be there from Halifax and New York, with instructions to reduce the town to order, and hold it under a strong military restraint."

Now, I conceive with you, that — both from her affection to you, and from the long habit of having you with her, would really be miserable without you. Her temper, perbaps, was never of the best; and, when that is the case, age seldom mends it. Much of her unhappiness must arise from thence; and, since wrong turns of mind, when confirmed by time, are almost as little in our power to cure, as those of the body, I think with you, that her case is a compassionable one.

If she had, through her own imprudence, brought on herself any grievous sickness, I know you would think it your duty to attend and nurse her with filial tenderness, even were your own health to be endangered by it. Your apprehension, therefore, is right, that it may be your duty to live with her, though inconsistent with your happiness and your interest; but this can only mean present interest and present happiness; for I think your future, greater, and more lasting interest and happiness will arise from the reflection, that you have done your duty, and from the high rank you will ever hold in the esteem of all that know you, for having persevered in doing that duty under so many and great discouragements.

My advice, then, must be, that you return to her as soon as the time proposed for your visit is expired; and that you continue, by every means in your power, to make the remainder of her days as comfortable to her as possible. Invent amusements for her; be pleased when she accepts of them, and patient when she perhaps peevishly rejects them. I know this is hard, but I think you are equal to it; not from any servility of temper, but from abundant goodness. In the mean time, all your friends, sensible of your present uncomfortable situation, should endeavour to ease your

burden, by acting in concert with you, and to give her as many opportunities as possible of enjoying the pleasures of society, for your sake.

Nothing is more apt to sour the temper of aged people, than the apprehension that they are neglected; and they are extremely apt to entertain such suspicions. It was therefore that I proposed asking her to be of our late party ; but, your mother disliking it, the motion was dropped, as some others have been, by my too great easiness, contrary to my judgment. Not but that I was sensible her being with us might have lessened our pleasure, but I hoped it might have prevented you some pain.

In fine, nothing can contribute to true happiness, that is inconsistent with duty; nor can a course of action, conformable to it, be finally without an ample reward. For God governs; and he is good. I pray him to direct you; and, indeed, you will never be without his direction, if you humbly ask it, and show yourself always ready to obey it. Farewell, my dear friend, and believe me ever sincerely and affectionately yours,

B. FRANKLIN.

TO A FRIEND.*

Desires an amicable and equitable Adjustment of Differences between England and the Colonies. »

London, 28 November, 1768. DEAR SIR, I received your obliging favor of the 12th instant. Your sentiments of the importance of the present dispute between Great Britain and the colonies appear to

• The name of the person, to whom this letter was written, is not known.

me extremely just. There is nothing I wish for more, than to see it amicably and equitably settled.

But Providence will bring about its own ends by its own means; and if it intends the downfall of a nation, that nation will be so blinded by its pride and other passions, as not to see its danger, or how its fall may be prevented.

Being born and bred in one of the countries, and having lived long and made many agreeable connexions of friendship in the other, I wish all prosperity to both; but I have talked and written so much and so long on the subject, that my acquaintance are weary of hearing, and the public of reading any more of it, which begins to make me weary of talking and writing; especially as I do not find that I have gained any point, in either country, except that of rendering myself suspected by my impartiality ; in England, of being too much an American, and in America, of being too much an Englishman. Your opinion, however, weighs with me, and encourages me to try one effort more, in a full, though concise statement of facts, accompanied with arguments drawn from those facts; to be published about the meeting of Parliament, after the holidays.* If any good may be done I shall rejoice; but at present I almost despair.

Have you ever seen the barometer so low as of late? The 22d instant, mine was at 28:41, and yet the weather fine and fair. With sincere esteem, I am, dear friend, yours affectionately,

B. FRANKLIN.

* It is uncertain to which of the author's publications he here alludes, or whether he executed the design proposed. There may possibly be an error of a year in the date of the letter, and, in such case, the piece may be the one entitled “ Causes of the American Dis. contents before 1768,” which was published on the 7th of January of that year. See Vol. IV. p. 242.

efore may be the one the date proposed. The

« 上一頁繼續 »