previous next
[34] to govern by instructions, to obtain a revenue
chap. II.} 1748.
by royal requisitions, to fix quotas by a council of crown officers. No power but that of parliament can overrule the colonial assemblies.

Such was the doctrine of Murray, who was himself able to defend his system, being unrivalled in debate, except by William Pitt alone. The advice of this illustrious jurist was the more authoritative, because he ‘had long known the Americans.’ ‘I began life with them,’ said he, on a later occasion, ‘and owe much to them, having been much concerned in the plantation causes before the Privy Council. So I became a good deal acquainted with American affairs and people.’1 During the discussions that are now to be related, he was often consulted by the agents of the American royalists. His opinion, coinciding with that of Hardwicke, was applauded by the Board of Trade, and became the corner-stone of British policy.

On this theory of parliamentary supremacy Shirley and his associates placed their reliance. Under his advice,2 it was secretly, but firmly, resolved to bring the disputes between governors and American assemblies to a crisis; New York was selected as the theatre, and the return of peace as the epoch, for the experiment; elaborate documents prepared the ministry for the struggle; and Clinton was to extort from the colonial legislature fixed salaries and revenues at the royal disposition, or, by producing extreme disorder,

1 Holiday's Life of Lord Mansfield, 248.

2 Clinton to Bedford, 17 Oct. 1749. That Clinton acted by the advice of Shirley appears from several letters.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Bedford, N. Y. (New York, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
George Clinton (3)
William Shirley (2)
William Pitt (1)
William Murray (1)
Hardwicke (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
October 17th, 1749 AD (1)
1748 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: