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ceeded in evolving a very specious, though thoɔughly false, argument in favor of his position.

This could not, of course, be suffered to pass in silence; a committee of the House was appointed, charged with the duty of preparing an answer and empowered to call for aid from competent persons, within or without Massachusetts, in framing it.

taining an independent judiciary, directly responsible to the people; to point the effect of transferring to the home government the payment as well as the appointment of judges, in undermining their independence, and, lastly, to prove the desirability of making the tenure of their office continue during good behavior, and to show that such a tenure did not, as argued by Brattle, already exist in the province. Hutchinson could not have been more devoted to the interests of the administration had he been born and lived in Mayfair. Though a native of Massachusetts, and a life-long associate with the leaders of the liberty movement, he had given or sold himself, body and soul, to the king, held several judicial offices in addition to the governorship, and had handsomely provided for his relatives and friends. He was thoroughly in sympathy with the effort to purchase the judiciary, yet he saw enough in Adams' argument to lead him to write to the home government, urging that, to allay the distrust of the people, a specific promise be made them, that the judges should hold office only during good behavior.

Mr. Adams had been dragged into an unwilling prominence by the necessity of answering Brattle's impertinent challenge, and would gladly have again withdrawn to the peace and obscurity of private life, but the emergencies of the time would not permit such indulgence, and he was, much against his will, compelled to resume the pen in the defense of popular rights. The occasion arose as follows: The spirit of independence had grown so strong and bold, that the denial of the right of parliament to interfere with the internal affairs of the province was openly made. Hutchinson repeated one of the many mistakes of his predecessor, Bernard, by challenging a pointless and utterly gratuitous contest with the people. At the opening of the general court, in 1773, he made an elaborate argument in support of the prerogative. He was very well satisfied with his effort, and, having little fear of an answer, felt confident of producing a decided popular reaction. The argument was not a very profound one, depending largely upon the necessary correlation of the duty of obedience with the privilege of claiming protection. He avowed that the ultimate authority must be either in Great Britain or in the province itself; if in the latter, what was it but independence, and what obligation remained in Great Britain to extend her protection further than her authority ? Proceeding to the clause of the colonial charter by which the inhabitants of Massachusetts were guaranteed all the rights of Englishmen, he said that the rights of Englishmen were not uniform, even within England. He sophistically urged that the rights guaranteed were necessarily limited to such as it was possible to grant; that by leaving England, the colonists had voluntarily cut themselves off from many rights, including that of representation, which they might resume upon returning. Thus he skilfully substituted the particular right of the individual for the corporate right of the colonist, and suc

ceeded in evolving a very specious, though thooughly false, argument in favor of his position.

This could not, of course, be suffered to pass in silence; a committee of the House was appointed, charged with the duty of preparing an answer and empowered to call for aid from competent persons, within or without Massachusetts, in framing it.



T is said upon the authority of a single person, that the assistance of Mr.

Dulany, of Maryland, and John Dickinson, of Pennsylvania, —both of whom had been prominent in opposition to the stamp act, was solicited by the committee for the service named in the last chapter, and refused; be this as it may, they certainly bore no part in preparing the answer, which was very slow in appearing. When it came, every one at once acknowledged its logical force, clearness, and exhaustiveness. It went to the very root of the question, denying much to the king that had been universally admitted. It denied the right of the monarch of a Christian people to seize the lands of heathen, and grant them at his pleasure; by hypothetically admitting this right, however, it proceeded with the statement that the sovereign, in whom, if not in its aboriginal inhabitants, lay the title to the lands lying within the boundaries of the province, had expressly gran ted to certain of his subjects the right to occupy and settle the same, under certain restrictions appearing in the language of the grant; this, it was claimed, reduced the question from one of natural right to one of interpretation of the grant, and of the presumption arising from subsequent acts of the colonists, done under its sanction, and countenanced by the king. Among these acts was that of making all laws for the internal government of the province, subject to no restriction, save that they should not be repug. nant to the laws of England. This very limitation, under Lord Bacon's rule, would increase the presumptive right of self-government on the part of the colony. For the king to have made a guaranty of the rights of British subjects

, as an integral part of a colonial grant, unless those rights were intended to be exercised in that colony, would be an absurdity. these rights could only be enforced by returning to England, it needed 10 solemn act of the king to convey them, for they already existed, and to withdraw them was beyond his power. The paper then proceeded to a


review of Mr. Hutchinson's precedents, and less vital arguments; by a clever argumentum ad hominem, it turned against him his own words, embodied in his History of Massachusetts, to prove his disingenuousness.

The effect of this masterly paper was not only to completely rout the governor, but to more than counteract his own argument. Had he been content to allow matters to take their course, the progress of the liberty propaganda must have been slow, but his unwise and ill-considered precipitation of the contest, and his ignominious defeat gave to his enemies a power for which they might long have striven in vain.

The authorship of the answer has been very much questioned and discussed, yet it seems very plain that the facts were fully recognized at the time. As it was by far the most important state document of the prerevolutionary period, it seems proper that the credit for its preparation should be properly bestowed. The facts appear to have been us follows: A committee, which included Samuel Adams and Joseph Hawley, was appointed by the house to frame a reply to the governor's argument. An answer was, in fact, prepared, principally by Mr. Samuel Adams, after the completion of which, Mr. John Adams, though not a member of the house, was called upon for counsel. His autobiography tells much of what followed:

“When I first met the gentlemen, they had an answer to his excellency's speech already prepared, neatly and elegantly composed, which I then believed to have been written by Samuel Adams, but which I have since had reason to suspect was drawn at his desire and with his co-operation, by my friend, Dr. Joseph Warren. It was full of those elementary principles of liberty, equality, and fraternity, which have since made such a figure in the world; principles which are founded in nature and eternal, unchangeable truth, but which must be well understood and cautiously applied. It is not safe, at all times, and in every cause, to apply the ratio ultima verum; resort to club law and force of arms. There was no answer, or attempt to answer, the governor's legal and constitutional arguments, such as they were. I found myself in a delicate situation, as you may well suppose. In the first place, the self-love of the composer, who I believed to be Samuel Adams, having then no suspicion of Warren, would be hurt by garbling his infant. In the second place, to strike out principles which I loved as well as any of the people, would be odious and unpopular. We read that West would give five hundred dollars for a red lion, which he painted for a sign post. I, poor as I am, would give as much for a copy of that answer to Governor Hutchinson. But I fear it is lost forever ; it may, however, be found hereafter, and I hope it may.

We read the answer, paragraph by paragraph. I suggested my doubts, scri ples, and difficulties. The committee seemed to see and feel the force of them. The gentlemen condescended to ask my opinion what answer would be

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