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[335] of public danger it is indispensable, to raise the
Chap. LXI.} 1776. Mar.
effective force of the two monarchies to the height of their real power; for of all conjectures which circumstances authorize, the least probable is, that peace can be preserved, whatever may be the issue of the present war between England and her colonies.

Such are the principal points of view which this important problem admits of, and which have been simply indicated to the wisdom and penetration of the king and of his council.

This discussion of America was simultaneous with the passionate opposition of the aristocracy of France to the reforms of Turgot. The parliament of Paris had just refused to register the royal edicts which he had wisely prepared for the relief of the peasants and the mechanics of the kingdom. ‘Ah,’ said the king, as he heard of its contumacy, ‘I see plainly there is no one but Turgot and I, who love the people;’ and the registration of the decrees was carried through only by the extreme exercise of his prerogative against a remonstrance of the aristocracy, who to the last resisted the measures of justice to the laboring classes, as ‘confounding the nobility and the clergy with the rest of the people.’

The king directed Vergennes to communicate his memorial on the colonies to Turgot, whose written opinion upon it was required. Vergennes obeyed, recommending to his colleague secrecy and celerity, for Spain was anxiously waiting the determination of the court of France. Turgot took more than three weeks for deliberation, allowed full course to his ideas, and on the sixth of April gave the king this


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