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[223] parting; others, more faithful still, invented means to
chap. X.} 1764. Oct.
escape, and fly back to their places in the wigwams of their chosen warriors.

With the wilderness pacified, with the French removed, an unbounded career of happiness and tranquillity seemed opening upon the British empire. Never was there a moment when the affections of the colonists struggled more strongly toward England, or when it would have been easier for the mother country to have secured to herself all the benefits of their trade, as well as their good will. Had the officers in the public employ been wise, had the ministry possessed that moderation which is the test of greatness, independence would not have been seriously thought of. Virginia, appealing to the king, to the house of lords, and to the house of commons, declared the taxation of America by the British parliament to be ‘subversive of the fundamental principles of the constitution,’ and dangerous in its example to the empire at home. But if the people could enjoy ‘their undoubted rights,’ ‘their connection with Britain, the seat of liberty, would be their greatest happiness.’ The people of North Carolina, in an address of the assembly, claimed the inherent right and exclusive privilege of imposing their own taxes. But they went no further than to appoint a committee to express their concurrence with the province of Masachusetts.1 At that time, the Assembly of Massachusetts, in the vain hope of being heard by the House of Commons,

1 Martin's History of North Carolina, II. 188.

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