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[450] of the American Assemblies to be null and
chap. XXIV} 1766. Mar.

The bill for the repeal of the Stamp Act, was read a second time upon Tuesday, the eleventh of March.1 The House of Lords was so full on the occasion, that strangers were not admitted. Ten peers spoke against the repeal, and the lords sat between eleven and twelve hours, which was later than ever was remembered.

Once more Mansfield and Camden exerted all their powers on opposite sides; while Temple indulged in personalities, aimed at Camden.

‘The submission of the Americans,’ argued the Duke of Bedford, who closed the debate, ‘is the palladium, which if suffered to be removed, will put a final period to the British empire in America. To a modification of the duties I would not have been unfavorable; but a total repeal of them is an act of versatility, fatal to the dignity and jurisdiction of parliament, the evil consequences of which no declaratory act can avert or qualify.’2

The House of Lords divided. For subduing the colonies, if need be, by sword or fire, there appeared sixty-one, including the Duke of York, and several of the bishops; in favor of the repeal there were seventy-three; but adding the voices of those absent peers, who voted by proxy, the numbers were one hundred and five against seventy-one. Northington, than whom no one had been more vociferous that

1 Chatham Corr. II., 384, note. The date of every one of the letters of W. G. Hamilton is wrongly given. For 15 Feb., read 8 March; for 17 Feb., read 10 March; for 19 Feb., read 12 March, &c., & c. How could these dates have been so changed?

2 Wiffen's House of Russell, II., 571.

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