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[367] that higher foresight, which over all brings forth bet-
Chap. LXIII.} 1776. May.
ter things out of evil and out of good.

The day on which George the Third sealed the instructions to his commissioners, congress decided to take no measures for their reception until previous application should be made; voted to issue ten millions of dollars in bills of credit for the purpose of carrying on the war for the current year; and took into consideration the proposition of John Adams, that ‘each one of the United Colonies, where no government sufficient to the exigencies of their affairs had as yet been established, should adopt such government, as would, in the opinion of the representatives of the people, best conduce to the happiness and safety of their constituents and of America.’ This last was the decisive measure which he had advised twelve months before, and which the timid had kept back in order still to petition and negotiate; with full knowledge of the importance of the movement, it was now resisted through two successive days, but on the tenth of May triumphed over all procrastinators. John Adams, Edward Rutledge, and Richard Henry Lee were then appointed to prepare a preamble to the resolution. Lee and Adams were of one mind; and on the following Monday they made their report. Recalling the act of parliament which excluded the Americans from the protection of the crown, the king's neglect to return any answer whatever to their petition, the employment of the whole force of the kingdom, aided by foreign mercenaries, for their destruction, they declared that it was ‘absolutely irreconcilable with reason and good conscience for the people of these colonies now to take the oaths and affirmations ’

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