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[312] with the bitterness of enduring anger and disappointed
chap. XVI.} 1765. Aug.
avarice in his heart, seasonably in the day-time, ‘gave it under his own hand,’ that he would not serve as Stamp Officer, while Bernard, deserting his post as guardian of the public peace, hurried trembling to the castle, and could not recover from his fears, though immured within the walls of a fortress. At night,, bonfire on Fort Hill celebrated the people's victory Several hundred men were likewise gathered round the house of Hutchinson. ‘Let us but hear from his own mouth,’ said their leader, ‘that he is not in favor of the Stamp Act, and we will be easy.’ But Hutchinson evaded a reply.

The governor, just before his retreat, ordered a proclamation for the discovery and arrest of the rioters. ‘If discovery were made,’ said Hutchinson, ‘it would not be possible to commit them.’ ‘The prisons,’ said Mayhew, ‘would not hold them many hours. In this town, and within twenty miles of it, ten thousand men would soon be collected together on such an occasion.’ And on the next Lord's Day but one, before a crowded audience, choosing as his text,—‘I would they were even cut off which trouble you; for, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty,’—he preached fervidly in behalf of civil and religious freedom. ‘I hope,’ said he, ‘no persons among ourselves have encouraged the bringing such a burden as the Stamp Act on the country.’

The distrust of the people fell more and more upon Hutchinson.—‘He is a prerogative man,’ they cried. ‘He grasps at all the important offices in the state.’—‘He himself holds four, and his relations six or seven more.’—‘He wiped out of the petition of Massachusetts every spirited expression.’

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