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‘ [200] have delivered their sentiments in the style of a
Chap. XXXVI.} 1768. Sept.
ruling and sovereign nation, who acknowledge no dependence;’ wrote Gage. ‘Sedition,’ he feared, ‘might be catching, and show itself in New-York.’1 ‘Your life is in danger from those Catilines, the Sons of Liberty,’ said Auchmuty2 to Hutchinson. Bernard was sure that but for the Romney, a rebellion would have broken out; he reported a design against the Castle, and talked of discovering the very names of five hundred men enrolled for the service; he acknowledged what he called ‘the melancholick truth, that his government was subdued;’ he trembled for his own safety; two regiments would not be sufficient for his protection. ‘I dare not,’ said he, ‘publish a proclamation against the Convention,3 without first securing my retreat.’ ‘I wish I were away,’4 he owned to those around him; the offer of a baronetcy and the Vice-Government of Virginia coming to hand, he accepted them ‘most thankfully,’ and hoped to embark for England in a fortnight.5 He had hardly indulged in this day-dream for twentyfour hours, when his expectations were dashed by the account of Botetourt's appointment, and he began to quake, lest he should lose6 Massachusetts also. Of a sudden he was become the most anxious and unhappy man in Boston.

1 Gage to Hillsborough, 26 Sept. 1768.

2 Robert Auchmuty to Hutchinson, 14 Sept. 1768.

3 Bernard to Hillsborough, 9 Sept. and 16 Sept. 1768. Letters to the Ministry, 70, 74.

4 Compare Hillsborough to Gage, 16 Sept. 1768, and Captain Corner's Diary, Thursday, 15 Sept. ‘Threats and panic as usual. The Governor wishes himself away; says he believes the Romney prevented rebellion.’

5 Bernard to Hillsborough, 17 September, 1768.

6 Bernard to Hillsborough, 18 September, 1768.

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