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      We shall see, if we open histories, that laws, which[118] are or ought to be covenants between free men, have generally been nothing but the instrument of the passions of some few men, or the result of some accidental and temporary necessity. They have never been dictated by an unimpassioned student of human nature, able to concentrate the actions of a multitude of men to a single point of view, and to consider them from that point alonethe greatest happiness divided among the greatest number. Happy are those few nations which have not waited for the slow movement of human combinations and changes to cause an approach to better things, after intolerable evils, but have hastened the intermediate steps by good laws; and deserving is that philosopher of the gratitude of mankind, who had the courage, from the obscurity of his despised study, to scatter abroad among the people the first seeds, so long fruitless, of useful truths.

      using the last light to write to you.On the next day the town-crier came with a message from the Demoiselle, inviting his English 58

      It was not yet time to preach it, or at least Denonville thought so. He dissembled his purpose to the last moment, even with his best friends. Of all the Jesuits among the Iroquois, the two 137 brothers Lamberville had alone held their post. Denonville, in order to deceive the enemy, had directed these priests to urge the Iroquois chiefs to meet him in council at Fort Frontenac, whither, as he pretended, he was about to go with an escort of troops, for the purpose of conferring with them. The two brothers received no hint whatever of his real intention, and tried in good faith to accomplish his wishes; but the Iroquois were distrustful, and hesitated to comply. On this, the elder Lamberville sent the younger with letters to Denonville to explain the position of affairs, saying at the same time that he himself would not leave Onondaga except to accompany the chiefs to the proposed council. "The poor father," wrote the governor, "knows nothing of our designs. I am sorry to see him exposed to danger; but, should I recall him, his withdrawal would certainly betray our plans to the Iroquois." This unpardonable reticence placed the Jesuit in extreme peril; for the moment the Iroquois discovered the intended treachery they would probably burn him as its instrument. No man in Canada had done so much as the elder Lamberville to counteract the influence of England and serve the interests of France, and in return the governor exposed him recklessly to the most terrible of deaths. [31]

      A powerful ally presently came to his aid in the shape of Benjamin Franklin, then postmaster-general of Pennsylvania. That sagacious personage,the sublime of common-sense, about equal in his instincts and motives of character to the respectable average of the New England that produced him, but gifted with a versatile power of brain rarely matched on earth,was then divided between his strong desire to repel a danger of which he saw the imminence, and his equally strong antagonism to the selfish claims of the Penns, proprietaries of Pennsylvania. This last motive had determined his attitude towards their representative, the Governor, and led him into an opposition as injurious to the military good name of the province as it was favorable to its political longings. In the present case there was no such conflict of inclinations; he could help Braddock without hurting Pennsylvania. He and his son had visited 199and a dinner dress of red veiling with Oriental trimming (makes

      V1 silence," pursues the missionary, "an infinity of talks on this occasion. Monsieur de Joncaire forgot nothing that could help me, and behaved like a great servant of God and the King. My recruits increased every moment. I went to say my breviary while my Indians and the Senecas, without loss of time, assembled to hold a council with Monsieur de Joncaire." The result of the council was an entreaty to the missionary not to stop at Oswego, lest evil should befall him at the hands of the English. He promised to do as they wished, and presently set out on his return to Fort Niagara, attended by Joncaire and a troop of his new followers. The journey was a triumphal progress. "Whenever was passed a camp or a wigwam, the Indians saluted me by firing their guns, which happened so often that I thought all the trees along the way were charged with gunpowder; and when we reached the fort, Monsieur de Becancour received us with great ceremony and the firing of cannon, by which my savages were infinitely flattered."

      in the career of an orphan? You gave them to me, and I am very, very,

      The Association had become so formidable, and was yet so carefully kept within the bounds of law by "Counsellor O'Connell," in whose legal skill the Roman Catholics of all classes had unbounded confidence, that the Government resolved to procure an Act of Parliament for its suppression. Accordingly, on the 11th of February, 1825, a Bill was brought into the House of Commons by the Irish Chief Secretary, Mr. Goulburn, under the title of Unlawful Societies in Ireland Bill. The plural form caused a great deal of debating. The Government declared they wished to include the Orange Society as well as the Catholic Association. But the Opposition had no faith in this declaration, and Mr. Brougham stated that they would put down the Catholic Association with one hand and pat the Orange Society on the back with the other. The debates on the subject were very animated, and touched upon constitutional questions of the widest interest to the public. The Irish Attorney-General said he did not deny that if a set of gentlemen thought fit to unite for those purposes, it was in their power to do so; but then came the question as to the means which they employed, and those means he denied to be constitutional. "They have," he said, "associated with them the Catholic clergy, the Catholic nobility, many of the Catholic gentry, and all the surviving delegates of 1791. They have established committees in every district, who keep up an extensive correspondence through the country. This Association, consisting originally of a few members, has now increased to 3,000. They proceeded to establish a Roman Catholic rent; and in every single parish, of the 2,500 parishes into which Ireland is divided, they appointed twelve Roman Catholic collectors, which make an army of 30,000. Having this their army of collectors, they brought to their assistance 2,500 priests, and the whole ecclesiastical body. And thus provided, they go about levying contributions on the peasantry." This Mr. Plunket pronounced to be unconstitutional, though not in the strict sense illegal; the Association was a representative and a tax-levying body. He denied that any portion of the subjects of this realm had a right to give their suffrages to others, had a right to select persons to speak their sentiments, to debate upon their grievances, and to devise measures for their removal. This was the privilege alone of the Commons of the United Kingdom. He would not allow that species of power to anybody not subjected to proper control. But to whom were those individuals accountable? Where was their responsibility? Who was to check them? Who was to stop their progress? By whom were they to be tried or rebuked if found acting mischievously? People not acquainted with Ireland were not aware of the nature of this formidable instrument of power, greater than the power of the sword. Individuals connected with it went into every house and every family. They mixed in all the relations of private life, and afterwards detailed what they heard with the utmost freedom. The Attorney-General could not conceive a more deadly instrument of tyranny than it was when it interfered with the administration of justice. Claiming to represent six millions of the people of Ireland, it denounced as a public enemy, and arraigned at the bar of justice, any individual it chose to accuse of acting contrary to the popular interest. Thus the grand inquest of the people were the accusers, and there was an unlimited supply of money to carry on the prosecution. The consequence was that magistrates were intimidated, feeling that there was no alternative but to yield, or be overwhelmed by the tide of fierce popular passions.In order that a punishment may be just, it must contain only such degrees of intensity as suffice to deter men from crimes. But as there is no one who on reflection would choose the total and perpetual loss of his liberty, however great the advantages offered him by a crime, the intensity of the punishment of servitude for life, substituted for capital punishment, has that in it which is sufficient to daunt the most determined courage. I will add that it is even more deterrent than death. Very many men face death calmly and firmly, some from fanaticism, some from vanity, which almost always attends a man to the tomb; others from a last desperate attempt either no longer to live or to escape from their misery; but neither fanaticism nor vanity have any place among fetters and chains, under the stick, under the yoke, in a cage of iron; the wretch thus punished is so far from terminating his miseries that with his punishment he only begins them.



      where eleven little tots, from four to seven, occupied eleven little


      In regard to the "Far Indians," the French, the English, and the Five Iroquois Nations all had distinct and opposing interests. The French wished to engross their furs, either by inducing the Indians to bring them down to Montreal, or by sending traders into their country to buy them. The English, with a similar object, wished to divert the "Far Indians" from Montreal and draw them to Albany; but this did not suit the purpose of the Five Nations, who, being sharp politicians and keen traders, as well as bold and enterprising warriors, wished to act as middle-men between the beaver-hunting tribes and the Albany merchants, well knowing that good profit might thus accrue. In this state of affairs the converted Iroquois settled at Caughnawaga played a peculiar part. In the province of New York, goods for the Indian trade were of excellent quality and comparatively abundant and cheap; while among the[Pg 15] French, especially in time of war, they were often scarce and dear. The Caughnawagas accordingly, whom neither the English nor the French dared offend, used their position to carry on a contraband trade between New York and Canada. By way of Lake Champlain and the Hudson they brought to Albany furs from the country of the "Far Indians," and exchanged them for guns, blankets, cloths, knives, beads, and the like. These they carried to Canada and sold to the French traders, who in this way, and often in this alone, supplied themselves with the goods necessary for bartering furs from the "Far Indians." This lawless trade of the Caughnawagas went on even in time of war; and opposed as it was to every principle of Canadian policy, it was generally connived at by the French authorities as the only means of obtaining the goods necessary for keeping their Indian allies in good humor.In wood engraving, Thomas Bewick, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, revived the art, and threw such fascination into it by the exquisite tail-pieces in his "Natural History," that his name will always be associated with this style of engraving.