Grenville did not propose a requisition on the colonies, or invite them to tax themselves;1 the delay granted was only for form's sake,2 and with the hope of winning from them some expression of assent,3 and was in itself a subject of censure and discontent among the more thorough reformers of colonial governments. No hope was given that parliament would forego taxing America. On the contrary, it was held to be its bounden duty to do so. To a considerate and most respectable merchant, a member of the House of Commons, who was making a representation against proceeding with the stamp act, Grenville answered, ‘If the stamp duty is disliked, I am willing to change it for any other equally productive. If you object to the Americans being taxed by parliament, save yourself ’
 other mode of taxation more convenient to them, and
make any proposition of equal efficacy with the stamp-duty, I will give it all due consideration.
chap. IX.} 1764. April.Ibid, p 35.
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1 Edmund Burke's Speech on American Taxation: ‘I have disposed of this falsehood:’ and it was a falsehood. Whoever wishes to see a most artful attempt to mislead may look at Israel Mauduit's reply to Burke, or as he called him, ‘The Agent for New-York.’ He seems to say, that Grenville had given the colonies the option to tax themselves. But he does not say it; he only proves that the Massachusetts Assembly so understood the letter from his brother Jasper, communicating the account of the interview of the agents with Grenville.
2 Cecilius Calvert, Secretary of Maryland, to the Lieutenant-Governor of Maryland, Feb. 29 to April 8, 1764: ‘The resolution on stamp duties left out, to apprise the colonies, if any they have, they make objections, only given, I am told, pro forma tantum, before it is fixed next year, which the agents are to expect, unless very good reasons are produced to the House per contra.’
3 ‘When Mr. Grenville first hesitated a doubt of the unlimited supremacy of the British legislature, if he did not moot a point, that, perhaps, would not otherwise have been called in question, he conveyed to the discontented certain information, that they might depend upon the support of a party so considerable as to deserve the attention of the British ministry.’ Letter to Lord Geo. Germaine on the Rise, &c., of Rebellion in the Southern Colonies, pp. 9 and 10. Compare Dean Tucker's Fourth Tract.
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