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[264] courage. Choiseul allowed their deputies to live at
Chap. XL.} 1769. March
Paris, and to publish their griefs; and he communicated to the Ambassador in England the project of the republic on the banks of the Mississippi.1

The idea and the reasoning in its support pleased Du Chatelet infinitely. ‘Spain,’ said he,

can never derive benefit from Louisiana. She neither will nor can take effective measures for its colonization and culture. She has not inhabitants enough to furnish emigrants, and the religious and political principles of her Government will always keep away foreigners and even Frenchmen. Under Spanish dominion, the vast extent of territory ceded by France to Spain on the banks of the Mississippi will soon become a desert.

The expense of Colonies is requited only by commerce; and the commerce of Louisiana, under the rigor of the Spanish prohibitive laws, will every day become more and more a nullity. Spain then will make an excellent bargain, if she accords Liberty to the inhabitants of Louisiana, and permits them to form themselves into a republic. Nothing can so surely keep them from falling under English rule, as making them cherish the protection of Spain and the sweetness of independence.

The example of a free and happy nation, under the guardianship of two powerful monarchs, without restraint on its commerce, without any taxes but those which the wants of the State and of the common defence would require, without any dependence on Europe but for necessary protection, would be a

1 Choiseul to Du Chatelet, 14 March, 1769.

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