« ZurückWeiter »
which was to be given, with two thousand pounds in money, he opposed the grant; saying that the nation was engaged in an expensive war, that the money was wanted for better purposes, and he did not see the least occasion for a college in Virginia. Blair represented to him, that its intention was to educate and qualify young men to be ministers of the Gospel, much wanted there; and begged Mr. Attorney would consider, that the people of Virginia had souls to be saved, as well as the people of England. “Souls !” said he, “ damn your souls. Make tobacco." I have the honor to be, Gentlemen, &c.
TO BENJAMIN VAUGHAN.
Restraints on Commerce. - Cook's Voyages. — Dr. Price's Pamphlet. - Luxury.
Passy, 26 July, 1784. DEAR FRIEND, I have received several letters from you lately, dated June 16th, June 30th, and July 13th. I thank you for the information respecting the proceedings of your West India merchants, or rather planters. The restraints, whatever they may be upon our commerce with your Íslands, will prejudice their inhabitants, I apprehend, more than us.
I have received Cook's Voyages, which you put Mr. Oswald in the way of sending to me. By some mistake the first volume was omitted, and instead of it a duplicate sent of the third. If there is a good print of Cook, I should be glad to have it, being personally acquainted with him. I thank you for the pamphlets by Mr. Estlin. Every thing you send me gives me
pleasure; to receive your account would give me more than all.
I am told, that the little pamphlet of Advice to such as would remove to America,* is reprinted in London, with my name to it, which I would rather had been omitted; but wish to see a copy, when you have an opportunity of sending it.
Mr. Hartley has long continued here in expectation of instructions for making a treaty of commerce, but they do not come, and I begin to supect none are intended; though perhaps the delay is only occasioned by the over great burden of business at present on the shoulders of your ministers. We do not press the matter, but are content to wait till they can see their interest respecting America more clearly, being certain that we can shift as well as you without a treaty.
The conjectures I sent you concerning the cold of last winter still appear to me probable. The moderate season in Russia and Canada, does not weaken them. I think our frost here began about the 24th of December; in America, the 12th of January. I thank you for recommending to me Mr. Arbuthnot; I have had pleasure in his conversation. I wish much to see the new pieces you had in hand. I congratulate you on the return of your wedding-day, and wish for your sake and Mrs. Vaughan's, that you may see a great many of them, all as happy as the first.
I like the young stranger very much. He seems sensible, ingenious, and modest, has a good deal of instruction, and makes judicious remarks. He will probably distinguish himself advantageously. I have not yet heard from Mr. Nairne.
* See Vol. II. p. 467.
Dr. Price's pamphlet of advice to America is a good one, and will do good. You ask, “what remedy I have for the growing luxury of my country, which gives so much offence to all English travellers without exception.” I answer, that I think it exaggerated, and that travellers are no good judges whether our luxury is growing or diminishing. Our people are hospitable, and have indeed too much pride in displaying upon their tables before strangers the plenty and variety that our country affords. They have the vanity, too, of sometimes borrowing one another's plate to entertain more splendidly. Strangers being invited from house to house, and meeting every day with a feast, imagine what they see is the ordinary way of living of all the families where they dine; when perhaps each family lives a week afterwards upon the remains of the dinder given. It is, I own, a folly in our people to give such offence to English travellers. The first part of the proverb is thereby verified, that fools make feasts. I wish in this case the other were as true, and wise men eat them. These travellers might, one would think, find some fault they could more decently reproach us with, than that of our excessive civility to them as strangers.
By the by, here is just issued an arrêt of Council taking off all the duties upon the exportation of brandies, which, it is said, will render them cheaper in America than your rum; in which case there is no doubt but they will be preferred, and we shall be better able to bear your restrictions on our commerce. There are views here, by augmenting their settlements, of being able to supply the growing people of America with the sugar that may be wanted there. On the whole, I believe England will get as little by the comVOL. X.
mercial war she has begun with us, as she did by the military.* Adieu, my dear friend.
Adieu, my dear friend. I am yours ever,
P. S. This will be delivered to you by my grandson. I am persuaded you will afford him your civilities and counsels. Please to accept a little present of books, I send by him, curious for the beauty of the impression.
FROM COUNT DE CAMPOMANES TO B. FRANKLIN.
Remarks on Dr. Franklin's Writings. - His Discoveries. - Laws in Spain. - Royal Academy of History. .
Madrid, 26 July, 1784. SIR, I have received, by the hands of my friend Mr. Carmichael, your estimable letter of the 5th of June, the collection of your miscellaneous writings, and the piece entitled, Information to those who would remove to America.f All these writings exhibit proofs of their having proceeded from a statesman, endowed with foresight, and vigilant for the best interests of his country, according to the political combinations and systems of government under which they were composed; and they manifest, at the same time, an ardent desire for the general happiness of mankind, founded on principles and calculations carried to as high a degree of demonstration, as the vicissitude and inconsistency of
A large portion of this letter is here omitted, which has usually been printed as a separate article, On Lurury, Idleness, and Industry. See Vol. II. p. 448. | See Vol. II.
the various systems adopted for the government of men will admit. Your views and reflections show the solidity and permanence of your principles, whether considered as applicable to the American colonies in their former condition, or in that of independent States. In both cases your efforts have been directed to the general good, without running into those extremes, which are apt to lead astray weak minds in so long and arduous a contest, as we have seen in America, for the establishment of a new State consisting of thirteen provinces under different constitutions, and, at last, united in a bond of union for the mutual benefit of each other.
Nature, which you have profoundly studied, is indebted to you for investigating and explaining phenomena, which wise men had not before been able to understand ; and the great American philosopher, at the same time he discovers these phenomena, suggests useful methods for guarding men against their dangers.
The frankness, with which you dissuade people in Europe from emigrating inconsiderately to America, is a proof of your general philanthropy, and of a candor peculiar to a good man, true philosopher, and genuine patriot. You extend this same benevolence to Spain, in your remarks respecting the honor that is due to labor, and against the entailment of estates. The former is now confirmed among us by a recent law, a copy of which I send herewith, declaring the honorable light in which every description of artisans should be regarded. Laborers were always honored and favored by our laws. As to what regards entailments, I refer you to what I wrote in the year 1765, at the end of my treatise upon Mortmain, in which I think I have demonstrated, that another regulation ought to precede this in the progress of legislation. I