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the war : “ Besides its policy, and necessity,” his lorde. ship said, “ that the measure was also allowable on principle, for that it was perfectly justifiable to use all the means which God and Nature had put into our hands.” This moving the indignation of lord CHATHAM, he suddenly rose, and gave full vent to his feelings in one of the most extraordinary bursts of eloquence that the pen of history has recorded. “ I am astonished," exclaimed his lordship, “ SHOCKED to hear such principles confessed: to hear them avowed in this House, or even in this country. My lords, I did not intend to have encroached again on your attention, but I cannot repress my indignation. I feel myself IMPELLED to speak. My lords, we are called upon as members of this House, as men, as Christians, to protest against such horrible barbarity-That God and Nature put into our hands! What ideas of God and Nature that noble lord may entertain, I know not; but I know that such detestable principles are equally abhorrent to religion and humanity! What, to attribute the sacred sanction of God and Nature to the massacres of the Indian scalping knife!-to the cannibal savage torturing, murdering, devouring, drink.. ing the blood of his mangled victims! Such notions shock every precept of morality, every feeling of humanity, every sentiment of honor. These abominable principles, and this more abominable avowal of them, demand the most decisive indignation. I call upon that reverend, and this most learned bench to vindicate the religion of their God, to support the justice of their couns try. I call upon the bishops to interpose the unsullied sanctity of their lawn: upon the judges to interpose the purity of their ermine, to save us from this pollution. I call upon the honour of your lordships to reverence the dignity of your ancestors, and to maintain your own.
I call upon the spirit and humanity of my country, to vindicate the national character. I invoke the genius of the constitution. From the tapestry that adorns these walls, the immortal ancestor of this noble lord frowns with indignation at the disgrace of his country. In vain did he defend the liberty, and establish the religion of Britain, against the tyranny of Rome, if these worse than popish cruelties and inquisitorial practices are endured among us.
To send forth the merciless cannibal, thirsting for blood ! against whom! Your protestant brethren!
to lay waste their country, to desolate their dwellings, and extirpate their race and name, by the aid and instrumentality of these horrible hell-bounds of war! Spain can no longer boast pre-eminence in barbarity. She armed herself with blood hounds to extirpate the wretched natives of Mexico; but we, more ruthless, loose the dogs oy war against our countrymen in America, endeared to us by every tie that should sanctify humanity. My lords, I solemnly call upon your lordships, and upon every order of men in the state, to stamp upon this infamous procedure the indelible stigma of the public abhor. Tence. More particularly I call upon the holy prelates of our religion to do away this iniquity : let them perform a lustration to purify their country from this deep and deadly sin. My lords, I am old and weak, and at present unable to say more, but my feelings and indignation were too strong to say less. I could not have slept this night in my bed, nor reposed my head upon my pillow, without giving this vent to my eternal abhorrence of such enor. mous and preposterous principles.”
The motion, however, was negatived by a majority of 97 against 28.
On the 12th of June 1781, just after the publication of the gazette account of the victory of Guildford, and before
the disastrous consequences which so soon followed, Mr. Fox moved the House to resolve itself into a committee to consider of the American war, for the purpose of devising some means of accommodation. He began by observing that this subject had undergone a recent discussion upon a motion made by his honourable friend, colonel HARTLEY, in consideration of which he should not now have troubled the House with a proposition built on the same basis, but that, since the late occasion, an argument had presented itself more unanswerable in its nature, and more efficacious, as he had reason to hope, with gentle. men on the other side, than any thing that he or his friend could advance: their assertions might be questioned; but those of Lord CORNWALLIS, he trusted, would have all the weight, which the abilities, experience, and high professional reputation of that general might fairly challenge. He had a paper in his hand, the late gazette, from which, on the authority of lord Cornwallis, the impracticability of conquering America was plainly deducible ; and on that alone he meant to rest his argument to day, as the best means of avoiding those stale repetitions so often complained of, when the present subject came before parliament: the subject might be old, but the field of reasoning would now have an air of movelty. He should therefore confine himself entirely to the gazette : it was an authority, to which gentlemen on the other side of the House would not object, and he begged the patience of the House would bear him company in giving it an attentive examination. This paper certainly confirmed every thing that had been advanced by his honorable friend and himself on the former occasion ; but if it could be permitted him to be jocular on such a subject, he might beg the House to believe there was no collusion in the case, the gazette neither having
been framed by his authority, nor he having had any previous knowledge of its contents. He remembered well the principal argument urged from the opposite benches, and on which the debate chiefly hinged, was a signal victory, which, said those gentlemen who opposed the motion of his honourable friend, will call the rebels to the British standard. The victory has since come confirmed; the British standard has been erected ; but what then were the predicted fruits of what he was tempted to call this pretended victory? Nothing but disappointment; nothing but misfortune; he would not say public disgrace. The truth was, the victory of Guildford, as it was called, drew after it all the consequences of something very nearly allied to a decisive defeat. Lord CORNWALLIS did not fly from the enemy; but indisputable facts bore him out in affirming, that if lord CORNWALLIS had been vanquished, instead of being the temporary victor, his operations or rather movements could not have bore a more unfortunate aspect. He no longer pursued the object of his expedition: he no longer sought the enemy even in their flight. Nay more, he in an instant relinquished all the advantages he had gained with so much difficulty, which had been attended with circumstances which reflected so much honor upon himself as a commander, and upon the very gallant but illfated body of men whom he led to glory, and to every thing but substantial success. From the report of earl CORNWALLIS, there was the most conclusive evidence, that the war, in which we were engaged, was at once impracticable in its object, and ruinous in its progress. It furnished us with the materials and grounds both of triumph and dejection, both of glory and despair. It shewed us that, beneath the conduct of that brave man, a body of British troops had acted up to all the expecta
tions that could be formed of their enterprize and valor; and at the same time taught us, that neither spirit nor perseverance, neither good conduct in the commander nor courage in the soldiery, could prevail in a contest founded in evident madness and inconsistency.
He wished, he said, to examine the information which we had received from earl CORNWALLIS pretty closely. The noble lord said, “ That the object of the campaign was to penetrate into North Carolina.” This, the honorable gentleman said, surely could not have been sufficient of itself to sanctify an expedition of so much certain expence and probable danger; and his lordship very properly gave the farther explanation in a subsequent passage by saying, “ that it was to give protection to the many loyalists that there were in North Carolina, and to bring them to the British standard.” From whom his lordship received this information, he could not pretend to guess; but most likely he received it from this country, where all such information had its rise and its currency. Undoubtedly there was some reason to apprehend, that there might be some men in North Carolina, who on the approach of his Majesty's arms might have joined them; for previous to the present contest, there were a set of men in this province, a sort of banditti, who infested the peaceable inhabitants, and against whose depredations it had been found necessary to guard, by putting arms into the hands of a number of orderly persons who were called regulators. To be sure, it was not altogether unreasonable to hope, but that these banditti, who had maintained a sort of intestine war against the old established government of the province, might be expected to join those who came like themselves to attack that government. To men of such a description all governments would be alike ; and they would be ready