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[514] opposed the Bill, unless the tax on tea were also
Chap. LII.} 1774. March
repealed. Pownall was convinced that the time was not proper for a repeal of the duty on tea. ‘This is the crisis,’ said Lord North, who had by degrees assumed a style of authority and decision. ‘The contest ought to be determined. To repeal the tea duty or any measure would stamp us with timidity.’ ‘The present Bill,’ said Johnstone, late Governor of West Florida, ‘must produce a Confederacy and will end in a general revolt.’ But it passed without a division, and very unfairly went to the Lords as the unanimous voice of the Commons. The King cheered his Minister on by sneers at ‘the feebleness and futility of the Opposition.’1

In the midst of the general anger, a book was circulating in England, on the interest of Great Britain in regard to the Colonies, and the only means of living in peace and harmony with them, which judged the past and estimated the future with contemplative calmness and unerring sagacity. Its author Josiah Tucker, Dean of Gloucester, a most loyal churchman, though an apostle of Free Trade, saw clearly, that the reduction of Canada had put an end to the sovereignty of the Mother Country; that it is in the very nature of all Colonies, and of the Americans more than others, to aspire after independence. He would not suffer things to go on as they had lately done, for that would only make the Colonies more headstrong; nor attempt to persuade them to send over a certain number of deputies or representatives to sit in Parliament, for the prosecution of that scheme

1 King to Lord North, 23 March, 1774.

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