Page images
PDF
EPUB

construction. If any man should affect to see more deeply into my bosom than I profess to see myself; or to detect an ambush of mischief which I have been studious to cover

from observation, that man will be the ob

ject, not of my resentment, but of my pity. I shall be assured that he suffers the infliction of a perverted head or a corrupt heart, and to that I shall contentedly resign him after expressing a simple perhaps, but certainly a sincere wish for his relief from what may justly be considered as the severest of human evils.

I belong to a fallible species, and am, probably, to be numbered with the most fallible of its individuals: but I am superior to fraud, and am too proud for concealment. TRUTH, religious, moral, and political, is what alone, I profess to pursue; and if I fancied that I discerned this prime object of my regard by the side of the Mufti or the grand Lama, of the wild demagogues of Athens or the ferocious tribunes of Rome, I would instantly recognise and embrace her. As I find her, b

i

however, or find a strong and bright resem-
blance of her in my own country, I feel that
I am not summoned to propitiate duty with
the sacrifice of prudence, and that, conscious
of speaking honestly, I can enjoy the satis
faction of speaking safely. Without acknow-
ledging any thing in common, but a name,
with that malignant and selfish faction which,
surrendering principle to passion, inflicted,
in the earlier periods of the last century,
some fatal wounds on the constitution, or
with those men, who in later times, have.
struggled, in the abandonment of their party
and its spirit, to retain its honourable appel-
lation,-I glory as I profess myself to be a
WHIG, to be of the school of SOMMERS and
of LOCKE, to arrange myself in the same
political class with those enlightened and
virtuous statesmen, who framed the BILL
OF RIGHTS and the AcT OF SETTLEMENT,
and who, presenting a crown, which they
had wrested from a pernicious bigot and
his family, to the HOUSE OF HANOVER, gave
that most honourable and legitimate of titles,

THE CHOICE

[ocr errors][subsumed][merged small]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

the FREE CHOICE OF THE PEOPLE, to the Sovereign, who now wields the imperial sceptre of Britain.

AUG. 4, 1804.

The general correctness of Mr. Bensley's press has superseded
the necessity of any long table of errata. Some mistakes, how-
ever, have unaccountably escaped the vigilance of observation.
Of these the most important are the following: the rest, as it is
presumed, are of a nature easily to be corrected by the reader,
and are too trivial to merit particular notice.

[ocr errors]
[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

To the memory

of

my most dear and accomplished Son,

CHARLES SYMMONS,

by the co-operation of whose fine mind and perfect taste I have been largely benefitted as a writer,

and to the contemplation of whose piety and virtues,
the sources of much of my past happiness,
I am indebted for all my present consolation,
I inscribe

THIS LIFE OF MILTON;

which, as it grew under his eye,

and was favoured with his regard,

cannot be without value in my partial estimation.

On the 23d of May, 1805,

before he had completed his twenty-second year,
he was torn from affection and my hopes,
experiencing from his God,

my

in requital of a pure life,

the mercy of an early death.

CHARLES SYMMONS.

« PreviousContinue »