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‘ [181] raise a revenue in the plantations.’ Every body in
chap. VII.} 1755.
parliament seemed in favor of an American revenue that should come under the direction of the government in England. Those who once promised opposition to the measure resolved rather to sustain it, and the very next winter was to introduce the new policy.1

The civilized world was just beginning to give to the colonies the attention due to their futurity. Hutcheson, the greatest British writer on ethics of his generation,—who, without the power of thoroughly reforming the theory of morals, knew that it needed a reform, and was certain that truth and right have a foundation within us, though, swayed by the material philosophy of his times, he sought that foundation not in pure reason, but in a moral sense,—saw no wrong in the coming independence of America. ‘When,’ he inquired, ‘have colonies a right to be released from the dominion of the parent state?’ And this year his opinion saw the light:—‘Whenever they are so increased in numbers and strength as to be sufficient by themselves for all the good ends of a political union.’

1 Bollan to the Speaker of Mass. Assembly.

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