Page images
PDF
EPUB

ver, or do but suspect the least design to incroach upon it they count it a crime never to be forgiven for any consideration whatsoever. Thus it was in the Roman state, where one gave up his children, another his brother to death, to revenge an attempt against common liberty ; divers also facrificed their lives, to preserve it; and some their best friends, to vindicate it upon bare suspicion; as in the cases of Mælius, and Manlius, and others, after manifest violation, as in the case of Cæfar.

Nor was it thus only in Rome ; but we find also as notable instances of revenge in the free-people of Greece, upon the same occasion. But the most notable of all, is that which happened in the island of Corcyra, during the war of Peloponnesus: where the people having been rook'd of liberty by the flights and power of the grandees, and afterwards by the affirtance of the free-states of Athens recovering it again, took occasion thereupon to clap up all the grandees, and chopped off ten of their heads at one time, in part of satisfaction for the injury: but yet this would not serve the turn; for, some delay being made in executing of the rest, the people grew so enraged, that they ran, and pulled down the very walls, and buried them in the Ruins and rubbish of the prison.

We see it also in the free state of Florence, where Cosmus the first founder of the Tuscan tyranny, having made shipwreck of their liberty, and seized all into his own hands; though he enslaved their bodies, yet he could not fubdue their hearts, nor wear their paft liberty out of memory; for up. on the first opportunity, they fought revenge, and a recovery ; 'forcing him to fly for the safety of his life: and though afterwards he made way for his return and re-establishment by treachery, yet now after so long a time, the old freedom is fresh in memory, and would thew itself again upon a favourable occasion.

But of all modern instances, the most ftrange is that of the land of Holftein; which being deprived of liberty, and about

seventy feventy years fince made a dutchy, and an appendix to the crown of Denmark; though the inhabitants be but a boorith, poor, filly generation, yet still they retain a sense of indigna. tion at the loss of their liberty; and being given to drink, the usual compliment in the midst of their cups, is this, " Here is a health to the remembrance of our liberty.Thus

you see what an impression the love of freedom makes in the minds of the people ; so that it will be easily concluded they must be the best keepers of their own liberties; being more tender and more concerned in their security, than any powerful pretenders whatsoever.

(To be continued in our next Number.)

For the PHILANTHROPIST.

ON

BRIBERY and CORRUPTION. CICERO, in the second book of his offices, highly commends a wise and handsome rebuke, which Philip of Macedon gave his son Alexander, for foolishly attempting to gain the affections of the Macedonians by Bribery. He wrote his son a letter upon it in these words. Quæ te, malum ! Ratio in iftam fpem induxit, ut eos tibi fidelis putares fore, quos pecunia corrupiffes? An tu id agis, ut Macedones non te regem suum, fed Miniftrum & Præbitorem ; quia fordidum Regi. Melius etiam quod Dargitionem corruptelam esse dixit: Fit cnim deterior, qui accidit, atque ad idem femper expectandum paratior. Philip was undoubtedly the greatest prince of his time. He was wise, artful and fortunate. The advice of such a king, while he was forming the mind of a young prince who afterwards gave law to the world, deserves our regard. This wise king had observed in his son many noble principles, the feeds of greatness, but ill conducted through youth and

inexperience. ( ) inexperience. Alexander was young, valiant and generous : but an excess, or-mifapplication of valour and generosity, ofa ten leads to the greatest inconveniences. That his generosity might take a good and useful turn, hé writes him this short, but important epistle." What notion is this, says he that you have got in

your head ? Can you imagine the fidelity and affection of the subject are to be acquired by bribery and corruption? Or is this your motive, that the Macedonians may not confider you as one, who is to be their Sovereign, but a minister to their extravagance and corruption.”

Tully's observation is equally fine. 6 'Tis sordid and mean, says he, below the dignity of a great king, to court the affection of his people with bafe bribes.” True love and esteem are built on a quite different foundation. “ Largeffes, or the giving of money, as the fame author observes, is corruption itself; for the receiver becomes a worse man, and is always apt to encrease his demands."--This maxim of Philip is certainly one of the wiseft in the whole system of politics, and likewise consistent with the stricteft rules of morality; that a king giving Bribes to his own subjects renders himself mean and sordid; that he never gains the true affection of one person by it; that he subjects himself to the arbitrary «will and fantasti-'. cal government of such prostitutes; and that his very crown is at their disposal to the highest bidder.

The immorality of it is likewise evident; for such proceedings, when generally known, debauch the morals of a whole people. The fame depravity and corruption foon find their way from a court to a cottage ; and in proportion to the diftance, is to be traced in a greater or less degree through every private family; so that in a short time the very name of virtue may come to be loft in such a kingdom. It is very probable that Philip might not regard this maxim in the moral view; for, if we may credit the Greek historians and orators, he was not apt to guide his actions by the rules of nice morality. He is generally drawn by them as cunning and defign

ing

ing, and though a warlike prince, no man knew the weight of money more than he, as well as how and where to apply it. His usual method of bribery was to buy an enemy's General, and sometimes a convenient town or fortress; by which means he artfully avoided risking his own glory, and the lives of his subjects.

(To be continued.)

For the PHILANTHROPIST.

LIBERTY'S INVITATION

A NEW SONG.

By W. H. GREEN.

COME Aock to my standard, 'tis Liberty calls,

Ye Britons who long have been brave,
For behold the last pillar of Liberty falls,

And each Englishman now is a slave !
What our forefathers gloriously died to preserve,

Shall we tamely fee barter'd and sold ?
O no!-then like them let's arise to deserve

The freedom that's dearer than gold.
Shall our children who o'er us the trophies might raise,

Our memories with tauntings revile ?
That without one last struggle one deed worth their praise

We resign'd all the boast of our Ille.
See the nations emerging from slavery's gloom,

All hail the bright dawnings of day ;
Then England, O England, award off thy doom,

And root out corruption's proud sway,
Like patriots unite 'gainst this despotic pow'r,

And tyranny's minions shall fee,
Like Hampden stand firm in the perilous hour,

And England again shall be FREE.

No. 40.

THE PHILANTHROPIST.

MONDAY, JANUARY 4.

+

LONDON.

Printed for and fold by DANIEL ISAAC EATON, Printer and

Bookseller to the Supreme Majesty of the People, at the Cock and SWINE, No. 74, Newgate street.

1796.

PRICE ONE PENNY.

For the PHILANTHROPIST.

REASONS

WHY THE PEOPLE ARE THE BEST KEEPERS OF THEIR OWN

LIBERTIES.

(Continued from our lapt.) THE ninth Reason to justify a free-state, is, because in free-states the people are less luxurious, than kings or grandees, use to be. Now, this is most certain, that where luxury takes place, there is as natural a tendency to tyranny, as there is from the cause to the effect; for, you know the nature of luxury lies altogether in excess. It is a universal depravation of manners, without reason, without moderation ; it is the canine appetite of a corrupt will and phantasy, which nothing can satisfy; but in every action, in every imagination, it flies beyond the bounds of honesty, just, and good, into all extremity: so that it will easily be granted, that form

of

« PreviousContinue »