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[117] the secrecy of the grant betrayed on the part of the
Chap. XXXI.} 1768. Jan.
Minister a sense of shame.

It was this use of the new revenue which the reflecting people in Boston particularly abhorred. ‘We shall be obliged,’ said they, “to maintain in luxury sycophants, court parasites and hungry dependents, who will be sent over to watch and oppress those who support them.” 1 If large salaries are given, needy poor lawyers from England and Scotland, or some tools of power of our own, will be placed on the bench. The Governors will be men rewarded for despicable services, hackneyed in deceit and avarice; or some noble scoundrel who has spent his fortune in every kind of debauchery.

‘Unreasonable impositions tend to alienate the hearts of the Colonists. Our growth is so great, in a few years Britain will not be able to compel our submission. Who thought that the four little Provinces of Holland would have been able to throw off the yoke of that powerful kingdom of Spain? —yet they accomplished it by their desperate perseverance.’ ‘Liberty is too precious a jewel to be resigned.’2

Such were the sentiments of the more moderate among the patriots. Still the attempt at concerting an agreement not to import had thus far failed; and unless the Assembly of Massachusetts should devise methods of resistance, the oppressive law would gradually go into effect. The hot spirits in that body

1 Andrew Eliot to T. Hollis, 10 Dec. 1767; and compare A. Eliot to Archdeacon Blackburne, 15 Dec. 1767.

2 Compare Andrew Eliot to Rev. William Harris, Dec. 1767.

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