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‘ [191] the trouble of the discussion, for I am determined
chap. IX.} 1764 April.
on the measure.’1

The whole weight of the British Legislature, too, was brought to intimidate the colonists. They were apprised that not a single member of either house doubted of the right of parliament to impose a stamp-duty or any other tax upon the colonies;2 and that every influence might be moved to induce them to yield, the king, in April, at the prorogation, gave to what he called ‘the wise regulations’ of Grenville his ‘hearty approbation.’3

Out of doors the measures were greatly applauded. It seemed as if the vast external possessions of England were about to be united indissolubly with the mother country by one comprehensive commercial system. Even Thomas Pownall, once governor of Massachusetts, who, not destitute of liberal feelings, had repeatedly predicted the nearness of American Independence, was lost in admiration of ‘the great minister,’ who was taking ‘pains to understand the commerce and interests’ of the plantations, and with ‘firmness and candor’ entering seriously upon regulating their affairs;4 and he prayed that Grenville might live to see the power, prosperity and honor that must be given to his country, by so great and important an event as his interweaving the administration of the colonies into the British administration.

1 Edmund Burke's Speech on American Taxation, in Works. Am. ed. i. 456.

2 William Knox, 33.

3 Speech in Adolphus, i. 142.

4 T. Pownall's Administration of the Colonies. First edition, March or April, 1764 Dedication to George Grenville.

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