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‘ [57] fixed maxim and principle.’1 The English ministry
chap. III.} 1749.
viewed it as a narrow question, relating to a subordinate branch of executive administration; America knew that it involved for the world all hope of establishing the power of the people.

The agents of the American royalists continued indefatigable in their solicitations. They had the confidential advice of Murray,2 who instructed them how best to increase their influence with the ministry. To this end they also fomented a jealous fear of ‘the levelling principles which had crept into New York and New Jersey,’ and which were believed to prevail in New England and Pennsylvania. ‘Drink Lord Halifax in a bumper,’ were the words of Clinton, as he read his letters from England; ‘though I durst say,’ he added, ‘the rest are as hearty.’ Especially the Duke of Bedford, on the first day of November, gave assurances to Clinton,3 that the affairs of the colonies would be taken into consideration, and that he might rely on receiving all proper assistance and vigorous support in maintaining the king's delegated authority. The secretary was in earnest, and for the rest of his life remained true to his promise, not knowing that he was the dupe of the profligate cupidity of worthless officers.

In a document designed for the eye of Halifax, Colden hastened to confirm the purpose. Of popular power ‘the increase in the northern colonies was immeasurable.’

1 Report of Facts agreed on by the Board of Trade 26 July, 1749, in F. J. Paris to James Alexander, 26 July, 1749. Board of Trade to Gov. Belcher, of New Jersey, 28 July, 1749.

2Solicitor Murray advised Mr. Catherwood not to leave the Sharpes, for they were by far the best hands one could be in for interest with the ministry.’ Letter of Gov. Clinton of 9 Feb., 1749.

3 Bedford to Clinton, 1 November, 1749. Clinton to Colden, 5 Feb., 1749-50.

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