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dation of the Monarch and privileged orders, and an address of congratulation sent to the National Assembly, on the overthrow of their monarchical government.

Burke maintains, that one of the principal sources of the happiness which the British nation enjoys under its present constitution, is its habitual and general adherence to the

dictates of experience ;—the practical avoidx arce of great innovations. In his illustra

tion of this just and salutary doctrine, he, it must be owned, goes farther in the instance of the rights asserted at the revolution than history justifies, or indeed the great objects of his work required. The arguments which he adduced, fully established that the French revolution did not tend to the good of its votaries, even when compared with their own old despotism; much more, that it was not a model for Britain to follow. It was, therefore, unnecessary to inquire what was the right of Britain, in any supposeable case, when it was obvious—what was EXPEDIENT in the existing state of things. This subject leads him to the question of resistance, in which he shows himself a moderate, wise Whig! · The revolution of 1688,' he says, · was obtained by a just war; the only case in which any war, and much more a civil war, can be just,-necessity. The question (of resistance) is (like all other questions of state) a question of' dispositions, and of means and probable consequences, rather than of positive rights. As it was not made for common abuses, so it is not to be agitated by common minds. The superlative line of demarcation, where obedience ought to end, and resistance must begin, is faint, obscure, and not easily defineable, It is not a single act, or a single event, which determines it. Government must be abused and deranged indeed, before it can be thought of, and the prospect of the future must be as bad as the experience of the past. When things are in that lamentable condition, the nature of the disease is to indicate the remedy to those whom nature has qualified to administer, in extremities, this critic.l, ambiguous, bitter potion to a distempered state. Times, and occasions, X and provocations, will teach their own lessons. The wise will determine from the gravity of the case ; the irritable, from sensibility to oppressive, the high-minded, from disdain and indignation at abusive power,

in unworthy hands; the brave and bold, from the love of honourable danger in a generous cause: but with or without right, a revolution will be the very last resource of the thinking and the good.

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I have hitherto, in this work, endeavoured to estimate its character as an eviction of truth, an exertion of reasoning, and an operation of wisdom. . As a display of genius it equals any production of the age, even any of Burke's own. Arguments (to use the words of by far the ablest of his literary opponents) every where dexterous and specious, sometimes grave and profound, clothed in the most rich and various imagery, and aided by the most pathetic and picturesque description, speak the opulence and the powers of that mind,


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of which age has neither dimmed the discernment nor enfeebled the fancy, neither repressed the ardour, nor narrowed the range.'

His subject is as extensive as political science—his allusions and excursions reach almost every region of human knowledge. A most perspicacious critic gives the following striking account and just description of the ornamental portion of the publication. * « In his ornament he is rich to profusion. His metaphors are drawn from every object in the creation, divine and human, natural and artificial, ancient and modern, recondite and familiar, sublime and grovelling, gross and refined, He ranges from the angels of heaven to the furies of hell; from the aeronaut, sparing above the clouds in his balloon, to the mole, nuzzling and burying himself in his mother earth ; from the living grasshopper of the field, and from the cuckow of the air, to the stuffed birds and the dead mummy of the

Monthly Review for November, 1790, p. 314, on Burke's Reflexions.

Museum; from the wild orgies of Thrace to the savage processions of Onondaga ; from the organic moleculæ of the metaphysician to the scales, weights, and ledger of the shopkeeper; from the kettle of the magician, and the dark science of the hermetic adept, to the porridge-pot of the scullion, and the pickling and preserving knowledge of the experienced cook; from the decent drapery, furnished from, the wardrobe of a moral imagination, to the huge full-bottomed perriwig of a bedizened monarch ; from the purity and delicacy of a Roman matron to the filth and nastiness of a village pig-stye; from the sweet fragrance emitted by the bloom of a young, lovely, and beautiful female, in the morning of her days decorating the horizon of life, to the foul stench exhaling from the mental blotches and running sores of an old, rotten, ulcerated aristocrat.' To antecedent and consequent, wit, humour, beauty, sublimity, and pathos, lend an aid not wanted for eviction of truth, but adding delight, admiration, and astonishment to instruction and wisdom. To collect in

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