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thunder of the laws, or the thunder..of eloquence,
".is hurled on gin,” always I am thunder proof. The
alembick, in my mind, has furnished the world, a
far" greater benefit and blessing, than if the opus
maximum had been really found by chemistry, and,
like Midas, we could turn every thing into gold.

Undoubtedly there may be a dangerous abuse
in the excess of spirits ;- and at one time I am ready
to believe the abuse was great. When spirits are
cheap, the business of drunkenness is achieved
with little time or labour; but that evil I consider
to be wholly done away. Observation for the last
forty years, and very particularly for the last thirty,
has furnished me with tеn instances of drunken-
ness from other causes, for one from this. Ardent

spirit is a great medicine, often to remove distem:: persắmuch more frequently to prevent them, or " to chase them away in their beginnings... It is: not nutritive in any great degree. But, if not food, it greatly alleviates the want of it.

It invigorates the stomach for the digestion of poor meagre dict, not easily alliable to the humane constitution. Wine the poor cannot touch. Beer, as applied to many occasions;'(as among seamen and fishermen for, instance) will by no means do the business. Let me add, whát wits inspired with champaign, and claret will turri into ridicule it is a medicine for the

mind. Under the pressure of the cares and „sor*** rows of our mortal condition, men haye...at, all


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times, and in all countries, called in some physical aid to their moral consolations, wine, beer, opium, brandy, or tobacco.

I consider therefore the stopping of the distillery, ceconomically, financially, commercially, medicinally, and in some degree morally too, as a measure rather well meant than well considered. It is too precious a sacrifice to prejudice.

Gentlemen well know whether there be a scarcity of partridges, and whether that be an effect of hoarding and combination. All the tame race of birds live and die as the wild do.

As to the lesser articles, they are like the greater. They have followed the fortune of the season. Why are fowls dear? was not this the farmer's or jobbers's fault? I sold from my yard to a jobber, six young and lean fowls, for four and twenty shillings; fowls, for which, two years ago, the same man would not have given a shilling apiece. He sold them afterwards at Uxbridge, and they were taken to London to receive the last hand.

As to the operation of the war in causing the scarcity of provisions, I understand that Mr. Pitt has given a particular answer to it-but I do not think it worth powder and shot.

I do not wonder the papers are so full of this sort of matter, but I am a little surprised it should be mentioned in parliament. Like all great state questions, peace and war may be discussed, and different .


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opinions fairly formed; on political grounds, but on a question of the present price of provisions, when peace with the regicides is always uppermost, I can only say that great is the love of it.

After all, have we not reason to be thankful to the Giver of all good? In our history, and when " the labourer of England is said to have been "once happy," we find constantly, after certain intervals, a period of real famine; by which, a melancholy havock was made among the human

The price of provisions fluctuated dreadfully, demonstrating a deficiency very

different from the worst failures of the present moment. Never since I have known England, have I known more than a comparative scarcity. The price of wheat, taking a number of years together, has had no very considerable fluctuation, nor has it risen exceedingly until within this twelvemonth. Even now, I do not know of one man, woman, or child, that has perished from famine ; fewer, if any, I believe, than in years of plenty, when such a thing may happen by accident. This is owing to a care and superintendance of the poor," far greater than any I remember.

The consideration of this ought to bind us all, rich and poor together, against those wicked writers of the newspapers, who would inflame the poor against their friends, guardians, patrons, and protectors. Not only very few (I have observed,


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that I know of none, though I live in a place as poor as most) have actually died of want, but we have seen po traces of those dreadful exterminating epidemicks, which, in consequence of scanty and unwholesome food, in former times, not unfrequently wasted whole nations. Let us be saved from too much wisdom of our own, and we shall do tolerably well.

It is one of the finest problems in legislation, and what has often engaged my thoughts whilst I followed that profession, "What the state ought

to take upon itself to direct by the publick wisdom, and what it ought to leave, with as little “ interference as possible, to individual discretion. Nothing, certainly, can be laid down on the sub

jcct that will not admit of excepțions, mạny, per:: manent, some occasional. But the clearest line

distinction, which I could draw, :whilst I had my chalk, to draw any line, was this; that the state ought to confine itself to what regards the state, or the creatures of the state, namely, the exteriour establişhment, of its religion; its magistracy ; its :1 Revenue; its military., force by sea and land; the

corporations that owe their existence to its fiat; ... in a word, to every thing that is truly and properly

publick, to the publick, peace, to the publick safety, toy, the publick order, to the publick, prosperity.

In its preventive police it ought to be sparing of as its efforts, and to employ means, rather few, un


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frequent, and strong, than many, and frequent, and, of course, as they multiply their puny politick race, and dwindle, small and feeble. Statesmen who know themselves will, with the dignity which belongs to wisdom, proceed only in this the superior orb and first mover of their duty steadily, vigilantly, severely, courageously: whatever remains will, in a manner, provide for itself. But as they descend from the state to a province, from a province to a parish, and from a parish to a private house, they go on accelerated in their fall. They cannot do the lower duty; and, in proportion as they try it, they will certainly fail in the higher. They ought to know the different de partments of things; what belongs to laws, and what manners alone can regulate. To these, great politicians may give a leaning, but they cannot give a law.

Our legislature has fallen into this fault as well as other governments; all have fallen into it more or lesse : The once mighty state, which was nearest to us locally, nearest to us in every way, and whose ruins threaten to fall upon our heads, is a strong instance of this errour.

I can never quote France without a foreboding sigh-EEEETAIHMAPI Scipio said it to his recording Greek friend amidst the flames of the great rival of his country. That state has fallen by the hands of the parricides of their country, called the revolutionists, and VOL. VII.



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