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[276] His presence was inspiration; he himself
chap. XII.} 1757.
was greater than his speeches. Others have uttered thoughts of beauty and passion, of patriotism and courage; none by words accomplished deeds like him. His voice resounded throughout the world, impelling the servants of the British state to achievements of glory oil the St. Lawrence and along the Ganges. Animated by his genius, a corporation for trade did what Rome had not dreamed of, and a British merchant's clerk made conquests as rapidly as other men make journeys, resting his foot in permanent triumph where Alexander of Macedon had faltered. Ruling with unbounded authority the millions of free minds whose native tongue was his own, with but one considerable ally on the European continent, with no resources in America but from the good — will of the colonies, he led forth the England which had planted popular freedom along the western shore of the Atlantic, the England which was still the model of liberty, to encounter the whole force of the despotisms of Catholic Europe, and defend ‘the common cause’ against what he called ‘the most powerful and malignant confederacy that ever threatened the independence of mankind.’1

The contest, which had now spread into both hemispheres, began in America. The English colonies, dragging England into their strife, claimed to advance their frontiers, and to include the great central valley of the continent in their system. The American question, therefore, was, Shall the continued colonization

1 Chatham Corr., i. 226.

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