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Our sunset skies in glory swell,
Hung round with glowing tapestry
rule the year,
In frosted clusters still be near:-
Beyond the wild, dark-heaving sea,
And Ocean's stormy vastness o'er,
A welcomer and dearer shore :
CXVII.THE BRISTOL ELECTION.*
Exordium of Mr. Burke's Speech, at Bristol, previous to the Election,
in the year 1780.
Gentlemen,- I am extremely pleased at the appearance of this large and respectable meeting.
I have been backward to begin my canvass. The dissolu. tion of the Parliament was uncertain; and it did not become me, by an unreasonable importunity, to appear diffident of the fact of my six years' endeavors to please you. I had served the city of Bristol honorably ; and the city of Bris. tol had no reason to think, that the means of honorable service to the public were become indifferent to me.
I am not come, by a false and counterfeit show of defer. ence to your judgment, to seduce it in my favor. I ask it
* Mr. Burke, who had for some years been a representative from Bristol, had advocated some measures which displeased his constitu. ents. The time for his re-election having arrived, he comes before them, and vindicates his conduct,
seriously and unaffectedly. If you wish that I should retire, I shall not consider that advice as a censure upon my con. duct, or an alteration in your sentiments, but as a rational submission to the circumstances of affairs. If, on the con. trary, you should think it proper for me to proceed on my canvass, if you will risk the trouble on your part, I will "risk it on mine. My pretensions are such as you cannot be ashamed of, whether they succeed or fail. If
upon me, I shall solicit the favor of the city upon manly ground. I come before you with the plain con. tidence of an honest servant in the equity of a candid and discerning master. I come to claim your approbation, not to amuse you with vain apologies, or with professions, still more vain and senseless. I have lived too long to be served by apologies, or to stand in need of them. The part I have acted, has been in open day; and to hold out to a conduct which stands in that clear and steady light, for all its good and all its evil, to hold out to that conduct the paltry, winking tapers of excuses and promises-I never will do it. They may obscure it with their smoke; but they never can illumine sunshine by such a flame as theirs.
CXVIII.—THE ENGLISH EMBASSY TO AMERICA, IN THE REVO.
Extract from the same Speech.
Gentlemen,-Do you remember our commission!
We sent out a solemn embassy, across the Atlantic ocean, to lay the crown, the peerage, the commons of Great Britain, at the feet of the American Congress. That our disgrace might want no sort of brightening and burnishing, observe who they were that composed this famous embassy. My Lord Carlisle is among the first ranks of our nobility. He is the identical man, who, but two years before, had been put forward, at the opening of a session in the House of Lords, as the mover of a haughty and rigorous address against America. He was put in the front of the embassy of submission. . Mr. Eden was taken from the office of Lord Suffolk, to whom he was then
under secretary of state; from the office of that Lord Suffolk, who but a few weeks before, in his place in Parliament, did not deign to inquire, where a Congress of vagrants was to be found. This Lord Suffolk, sent Mr. Eden to find these va. grants, without knowing where his king's generals were to be found, who were joined in the same commission, of supplicating those, whom they were sent to subdue. They enter the capital of America, only to abandon it; and these assertors and representatives of the dignity of England, at the tail of a flying army, let fly their Parthian shafts of memorials and remonstrances, at random, behind them. Their promises and their offers, their flatteries and their menaces, were all de. spised ; and we were saved the disgrace of their formal reception, only because the Congress scorned to receive them; whilst the state-house of independent Philadelphia, opened her doors to the public entry of the ambassador of France. From war and blood, we went to submission; and from sub. mission, plunged back again to war and blood; to desolate, and be desolated, without measure, hope, or end. I am a royalist: I blushed for this degradation of the crown. a whig : I blushed for the dishonor of parliament. I am a true Englishman: I felt to the quick, for the disgrace of Eng. land. I am a man: I felt for the melancholy reverse of human affairs, in the fall of the first power in the world.
CXIX.--THE DUTIES OF A REPRESENTATIVE.
The Peroration of the same Speech.
Gentlemen,-I HAVE had my day. I can never sufficiently express my gratitude to you, for having set me in a place, wherein I could lend the slightest help to great and laudable designs. If I have had my share, in any measure giving quiet to private property, and private conscience ; if, by my vote, I have aided in securing to families, the best possession, peace; if I have joined in reconciling kings to their subjects, and subjects to their prince; if I have assisted to loosen the foreign holdings of the citizen, and taught him to look for his protection, to the laws of his country, and for his comfort,
to the good will of his countrymen ;-if I have thus taken my part with the best of men, in the best of their actions, I can shut the book. I might wish to read a page or two more ; but this is enough, for my measure. I have not lived in vain.
And now, gentlemen, on this serious day, when I come, as it were, to make up my account with you, let me take to my. self some degree of honest pride, on the nature of the charges that are against me. I do not here stand before
accused of venality, or of neglect of duty. It is not said, that, in the long period of my service, I have, in a single instance, sacri. ficed the slightest of your interests to my ambition, or to my fortune. It is not alleged, that, to gratify any anger, or revenge my own, or of my party, I have had a share in wronging or oppressing any description of men, or any one man, in any description. No! the charges against me, are all of one kind, that I have pushed the principles of general justice and benevolence too far; further than a cautious policy would warrant; and further than the opinions of many, would go along with me. In every accident which may happen through life, in pain, in sorrow, in depression, and distress, I will call to mind this accusation, and be coma forted.
CXX.SIR GEORGE, BUTLER, AND SERVANTS.
From the Comedy of “The Drummer,” by Addison. Act 5–Scene 1..
[Enter Sir GEORGE, in his conjuror's habit,* the BUTLER marching before him with two large candles, and the two SERVANTS coming after him, one bringing a little table, and another a chair.]
But. An't please your worship, Mr. Conjuror, the steward has given us all orders to do whatsoever you shall bid us, and to pay you the same respect as if you were our master.
Sir G. Thou sayest well.
Gard. An't please you conjurorship’s worship, shall I set the table down here?
* This consists of a large cloak, a long beard, and a wand.
Sir G. Here, Peter.
Gard. Peter !-He knows my name by his learning. (Aside.]
Coach. I have brought you, reverend Sir, the largest elbow.chair in the house.
Sir G. Place it there.
But. Sir, I believe we have paper that is fit for your pur. pose ! my lady's mourning paper, that is blacked at the edges. Would you choose to write with a crow-quill?
Sir G. There is none better.
But. Coachman, go fetch the paper and standish out of the little parlour.
Coach. [To Gard.] Peter, prythee do thou go along with me-I—I'm afraid-you know I went with you last night.
But. Why, you don't think I'll stay with the conjuror by myself!
Gard. Come, we'll all three go and fetch the pen and ink together. [Exeunt SERVANTS.]
Sir G. There's nothing I see makes such strong alliances as fear. These fellows are all entered into a confederacy against the ghost.
[Enter GARDENER with a sheet of paper, COACHMAN with a standish, and BUTLER with a pen, which they all tremblingly put on the conjuror's table, and start back with fear.]
Gard. Sir, there is your paper.
But. Sir, there is your crow-quill pen. I'm glad I have got rid on't. [Aside.
Gard. [Aside.] He forgets that he's to make a "circle. Doctor, shall I help you to a bit of chalk ?
Sir G. It is no matter.
But. Look ye, Sir, I showed you the spot where the ghost's heard oftenest, if your worship can but ferret him out of that old wall in the next room
Sir G. We shall try.
Gard. That's right, John. His worship must let fly all his learning at that old wall.
But. Sir, if I was worthy to advise you, I would have a