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It will for ever silence their clamours about the liberty of the press ; it will prove to the people, most fully, the truth of what I have always told them; that is, that these “ pretended patriots," these advocates for liberty and equality, would, if they had become masters, have been a divan of cruel and savage tyrants. That they know nothing of liberty but the name, and that they make use of that name merely to have the power of abolishing the thing. It will prove to all the world, that they have long dreaded me, that they still dread me, and that I despise them.
I shall conclude with this unequivocal declaration; that, as to the past, I would not retract a sentence, nor a single expression of what I have written, if the most bloody of the most bloody democrats had his foot upon my breast, and his long knife at my throat; and that, for the future, I will continue to publish and expose for sale whatever I please, and that I will never cease to oppose, in some way or other, the enemies of the country in which I live, so long as one of them shall have the impudence to shew his head. Hitherto I have given acids only, I will now drench them with vine, gar mixed with gall.
FROM THE FREE PRESS
OF WILLIAM COBBETT,
END OF THE SCARE-CROW.
LIFE AND ADVENTURES
A FULL AND FAIR ACCOUNT
ALL HIS AUTHORING TRANSACTIONS;
A SURE AND INFALLIBIE GUIDE FOR ALL ENTERPRISING YOUNG MEN WHO
WISH TO MAKE A FORTUNE
« Now, you lying varlets, you shall see how a plain tale will put you 56 down.”
P R E F A CE.
The celebrated Dean of St. Patrick's somewhere observes that a man of talents no sooner emerges from obscurity, than all the blockheads are instantly up in arms against him. Fully persuaded of the truth of this observation, I should have been prepared for hostility, had I imagined myself a man of talents ; but, knowing the contrary too well, I little expected that the harmless essays from my pen would have conjured up against me this numerous and stupid host. It is their misfortune, never to form a right conception of any person or thing, and therefore their abuse is not always a certain proof of merit in the object on which it is bestowed: their ignorance lessens the honour conferred by their envy, hatred and malice.
I have long been the butt of the silly aspersions of this grovelling tribe ; but their spite never discovered itself in its deepest colours, till they saw me, as they imagined, “ issue from porerty to the appearance of better condition."
Then it was that their gall ran over, and jaundiced their whole countenances; then it was that the stupidest of all stupid gazettes, that lewd and common strumpet, the Aurora, became pregnant with the following bastard, as abundant in falsehood as any one that ever sprang from the loins of Poor Richard.