might carry into effect; for they con-
stituted them the pacificators and benefactors of their country.
In case of resistance, the cruelties of war were threatened.1
would but adhere to the commonwealth, she might be the mistress of her own destiny.
What opposition could be made to the parliament, which, in the moment of its power, voluntarily pro-
posed a virtual independence?
No sooner had the Guinea
frigate anchored in the waters of the Chesapeake
, than ‘all thoughts of resistance were laid aside,’2
and the colonists, having no motive to con tend for a monarch whose fortunes seemed irretrievable, were earnest only to assert the freedom of their own institutions.
It marks the character of the Virginians, that they refused to surrender to force, but yielded by a voluntary deed and a mutual compact.
It was agreed, upon the surrender, that the ‘people of Virginia
’ should have all the liberties of the freeborn people of England
; should intrust their business, as formerly, to their own grand assembly; should remain