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[461] and experienced Vergennes, the French ambassador at
chap. XX.} 1768.
Constantinople, a grave, laborious man, remarkable for a calm temper and moderation of character, heard the conditions of the peace, he also said to his friends, and even openly to a British traveller,1 ‘the consequences of the entire cession of Canada are obvious. I am persuaded,’ and afterwards he himself recalled his prediction to the notice of the British ministry,2— ‘England will ere long repent of having removed the only check that could keep her colonies in awe. They stand no longer in need of her protection; she will call on them to contribute towards supporting the burdens they have helped to bring on her; and they will answer by striking off all dependence.’ Lord Mansfield, also, used often to declare that he too, ‘ever since the peace of Paris, always thought the Northern Colonies were meditating a state of independency on Great Britain.3

The colonial system, being founded on injustice, was at war with itself. The principle which confined the commerce of each colony to its own metropolis, was not only introduced by England into its domestic legislation, but was accepted as the law of nations in its treaties with other powers; so that while it wantonly restrained its colonists, it was jealously, and on its own theory rightfully excluded from the rich possessions of France and Spain. Those regions could be thrown open to British traders, only by the general abrogation of the mercantile monopoly, which would extend the benefit to universal commerce, or by

1 Lind's three letters to Price. 137.

2 Lord Stormont, British Ambassador at Paris, to Lord Rochford, Secretary of State. No. 19. Separate. 31 October, 1775.

3 Lord Mansfield in the House of Lords, 20 Dec. 1775, in Almon. v. 167. Force, VI. 233.

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