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‘ [97] the prince who now sways the British sceptre
Chap. XXX.} 1767. Aug.
of millions of free subjects.’1 And when it was con– sidered, that Mansfield and the Ministry declared Aug. some of the grants in colonial Charters to be nugatory on the ground of their extent, the press of Boston, in concert with New-York,2 following the precedent set by Molineux in his argument for Ireland, reasoned the matter through to its logical conclusion.

‘Liberty,’ said the earnest writer,3 ‘is the inherent right of all mankind. Ireland has its own Parliament and makes laws; and English statutes do not bind them, says Lord Coke, because they send no knights to Parliament. The same reason holds good as to America. Consent only gives human laws their force. Therefore the Parliament of England cannot extend their jurisdiction beyond their constituents. Advancing the powers of the Parliament of England, by breaking the rights of the Parliaments of America, may in time have its effects.’ ‘If this writer succeeds,’ said Bernard, ‘a civil war must ensue;’4 and the prediction was well founded, for the King, on his part, was irrevocably bent on giving effect to the new system.5

The Act suspending the legislative functions of New-York increased the discontent. The danger of the example was understood; and while patriots of Boston encouraged one another to justify themselves

1 Britannus Americanus, in Boston Gazette, 545, 2, 1, of 17 August, 1767.

2 Bernard to Shelburne, 14 Sept. 1767.

3 In the Boston Gazette of the 24th of August, appeared a paper taken from Molineux's Case of Ireland, with variations to adapt it to America.

4 Bernard to Shelburne, 24 August, 1767.

5 Minute Book, XXXVIII. 459. Whitehall Treasury Chambers, 27 August, 1767.

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