Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub
[ocr errors]

consequences, but the remotest cause of them; in SECTION short, the history of the most ancient nation now existing should consist of only one period, or rather, every history must begin with the creation of the world, for that measure certainly produced the state of things existing at the present day. Mr. Fox's position at the outset of his work is, that in reading “ the history of every country, there are certain pe“ riods at which the mind naturally pauses to medi“ tate upon, and consider them with reference, not

only to their immediate effects, but to their more

remote circumstances ;” and Mr. Rose, who had previously declared his agreement with him, now raises an objection, which militates against any division at all. The only question is, whether from the alteration, which actually took place in the government of this country in 1040, that was not a proper time to pause and meditate. With all due deference to the opinion of Mr. Rose, it may be thought that a more proper moment for the purpose can hardly be pointed out in our history. And even upon Mr. Rose's principle, it may be defended, for the measures he alludes to occasioned the devolution of more than ordinary powers upon the Commons in 1640; and the consequence of their putting them into use was, the overthrowing of the monarchy, and after its restoration a reign disturbed by acts of turbulence and violence, little less mischievous and destructive than

an open

SECTION

I.

2. God!):2, 3:6, civil war would have been. The termination of this period (the third) with the reign of Charles the Second, "Mr. Rose also thinks was not well considered, because the reign of his brother was surely not less

remarkable for religious dispute and political contest " than his own." Mr. Fox probably fixed the end' of the third period, from the consideration that - at 'that æra his regular " history was to begin; moreover the reign of James the Second being more remarkable for the religious contesť he raised or inflamed, might have been a sufficient reason in his mind för separating it from his brothers. But the argument we have just used, will apply equally here, and the reader is desired to recollect for what purpose this division into 'periods was made at all, and then ' to consider whether the accession of the misguided monarch, whose whole reign was employed in hastening his own destruction by the folly and 'rashness of his conduct, was 'not a fit time, from which to trace the immediate causes of his ruin.

[ocr errors]

Rosc, p. 13.

It remains to be noticed, that Mr. Rose is not correct, when he says that “ Mr. Fox points out a

particular" year within that period,” i, e. between 1040 and 1684,'" when the constitution had attained its greatest perfection,” for he has left out the

theoretical,” before the word " “ perfection,” and also omitted to observe, that the opinion did not

words

• Rose, p. 14.

originate with Mr. Fox, but is quoted by him from section Mr. Justice Blackstorie. “But more of this hereafter.

bloods vid kriizui ", 51:11 The character giver of work in the historical work, Chareter of is certainly not a favourable one, ‘ånd Mr. Rose' says, Fox, P. 9, 10. that in it is a severity; neither supported by popular és belief, riot by the authority of history

%

He then insinuates, thidt Mr. Fox was a friend to a republican forin of government; adding, the general contributed * tó- the overturning a government, which 'Mr. Fox, “ with all "his seeming partiality for one partaking “ much of republican principles, would not have ventured to recommend."

not have recommended it, nor would Mr. 'Rose' have "im puted such a partiality, if he had not been living in that political atmosphere, which he sảys" so power? fully affects the understanding of those within" its influence. Mr. Rose is called upon to point out a single sentence in the historical work, from which it can be faitly inferred that Mr. Fox was not sincerely attached to a limited monarchy, and though none can be found, We will not rank this among the unjustifiable artifices of a political partizan, to calumniate and injure the character of the principal opponent of his party, but lament that Mr. Rose should,' under an influence he might not be señsible of hiinself, inadvertently in sinuate that, which upon reflection he must be sorry hè

But this insinuation is repeated in the

11

ever wrote.

SECTION

1.

Fox, p. 19.

bottom of the same page, aggravated by its being a direct perversion of the words of Mr. Fox to a sense, which he never intended they should bear. The words are, It is impossible, in reviewing the whole of this “ transaction not to remark, that a general, who had co

gained his rank, reputation, and station in the ser

vice of a republic, and of what he, as well as "! others called, however falsely, the cause of liberty, “ made no scruple to lay the nation prostrate at the “ feet of a monarch, without a single provision in favour " of that cause.". Nothing can well be more guarded than the expression of Mr. Fox. He is arguing against the conduct of a professed republican, who had basely betrayed the cause he was engaged in, and contents himself with saying, that Monk called it, however falsely, the cause of liberty, but gives it no denomination himself. Yet Mr. Rose has laid hold of the expression, “ in favour of the cause of liberty," and accompanied it with the words, " as Mr. Fox

expresses it," as if this was his description of the cause, in which Monk had been engaged, instead of the description of it by Monk hiinself, and others of his time.

Rose, p.14•

Cromwell and Monk compared.

In the next page the same insinuation occurs, but in a rather different form. Some displeasure. is manifested at a comparison made between the characters of Oliver Cromwell and Monk, in which the prefer

[ocr errors]

I.

ence is given to that of the former, and then Mr. SECTION Rose adds, “ It will require a great partiality for a

republican form of government, to account for this Rose, p. 14.

predilection in favour of the destroyer of monarchy, " and this prejudice against the restorer of it.” Mr. Rose here exhibits the same childish' partiality for Kings, which had been reprobated by Mr.' Fox in the writings of Mr. Hume;, according to him, the meanest of mankind, if a restorer of monarchy, is to be preferred to the possessor of the greatest mind and talents, if a destroyer of it. Mr. Fox thought more philosophically, he felt neither predilection for the one, nor prejudice against the other, but, according to the best of his judgment, gave an impartial character of both. If Monk was base and worthless character, it was giving no opinion of the cause in which he was engaged, tó say so; and if Cromwell was a man of a superior class, it was the duty of a historian not to withhold his proper meed of praise,

a

We shall now proceed to examine, whether Mr. Fox was justified in the characters which he has given to these persons, who in their days acted such distinguished parts in the history of this country ; but in doing this, it is necessary to premise that our remarks will be confined to such circumstances only, as have provoked the animadversions of Mr. Rose.

« ПредишнаНапред »