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London:
PRINTED FOR THE EDITOR, AND SOLD BY ALL BOOKSELLERS.

•MDCCCXXVII.

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THE ORIENTAL HERALD.

No. 46.-OCTOBER 1827.–Vol. 15.

ARBITRARY TAXATION OF THE BRITISH INHABITANTS OF

CALCUTTA.

The all-absorbing topic of interest connected with Britsh India, is, at present, the pending Stamp Act, by which an attempt is to be made to tax the British residents of Calcutta more especially, but eventually, no doubt, of every other part of India, to the utmost verge of their capacity to pay, and at the mere will and pleasure of their · Honourable Masters.'

There are some persons who think that they richly deserve this and every other infliction that tyranny can impose upon them, for the willing homage which they have, generally speaking, so indiscriminately paid to power and authority, during the last fifty years, but more especially for the unresisting manner in which they permitted themselves to be ignominiously fettered, insulted, and condemned, as totally unworthy to be trusted with the exercise of that privilege, by which more than every other, the free are distinguished from the enslaved—the privilege of giving utterance to their honest opinions, without dread of any other penalty than the verdict of a jury should adjudge. If the whole body of the British residents in India had petitioned for the abolition of that disgraceful power, by which the Governors of that country can banish, without a trial, any man who dares utter an opinion contrary to their wishes ; if they had resisted, as they ought to have done, the odious imposition of a law more degrading than any that exists in Turkey or in Spain, which prohibits them, on pain of exile and ruin, from printing, buying, borrowing, lending, reading, or even possessing any newspaper, book, pamphlet, or publication, which the GovernorGeneral may choose in his caprice to denounce ;--if they had the sense to perceive, or the courage to act on the perception, that the greater evil always includes the lesser, they would have insisted on the importance of a Free Press, as including, as well as securing, eyery other species of freedom and then, Stamp Acts, and every

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