Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

2. You must repeal her fears and her resentments; and you may then hope for her love and gratitude. But now, insulted with an armed force posted at Bos ton, irritated with a hostile array before her eyes, her concessions, if you could force them, would be suspicious and insecure, the dictates of fear, and the extortions of force!

[ocr errors]

3. But it is more than evident that, principled and united as they are, you can not force the Americans to your unworthy terms of submission. Repeal, therefore, my lords, I say! But bare repeal will not satisfy this enlightened and spirited people. You must go through the work. You must declare you have no right to tax. Then they may trust you. 4. There is no time to be lost. Every moment is big with dangers. While I am speaking, the decisive blow may be struck, and millions involved in the consequence. The very first drop of blood shed in a civil and unnatural war will make a wound which years, perhaps ages, may not heal.

5. When your lordships look at the papers transmitted to us from America, — when you consider their decency, firmness, and wisdom,—you can not but respect their cause, and wish to make it your own. I must declare and avow, that, in the master states of the world, I know not the people nor the senate who, under such a complication of difficult circumstances, can stand in preference to the delegates of America, assembled in General Congress at Philadelphia. For genuine sagacity, for singular moderation, for solid wisdom, manly spirit, sublime sentiments, and simplicity of language,- for every thing respectable and honorable, they stand unrivaled.

6. I trust it is obvious to your lordships that all attempts to impose servitude upon such men, to estab lish despotism over such a mighty continental nation,

[ocr errors]

must be vain, must be fatal. This wise people speak out. They do not hold the language of slaves. They tell you what they mean. They do not ask you to repeal your laws as a favor. They claim it as a right; they demand it. They tell you they will not submit to them. And I tell you the acts must be repealed. We shall be forced ultimately to retract.

7. Let us retract while we can, not when we must. I say we must necessarily undo these violent, oppressive acts. They must be repealed. You will repeal them. I pledge myself for it, that you will, in the end, repeal them. I stake my reputation on it. I will consent to be taken for an idiot, if they are not finally re-. pealed.* Avoid, then, this humiliating, this disgraceful necessity.

8. Every motive of justice and of policy, of dignity and of prudence, urges you to allay the ferment in America, by a removal of your troops from Boston,by a repeal of your acts of Parliament. On the other hand, every danger and every hazard impend, to deter you from perseverance in your present ruinous meas- · ures: foreign war hanging over your heads by a slight and brittle thread; France and Spain watching your conduct, and waiting the maturity of your errors !

9. To conclude, my lords, if the ministers thus persevere in misadvising and misleading the king, I will not say that they can alienate the affections of his subjects from the crown, but I will affirm that they will make his crown not worth his wearing. I will not say that the king is betrayed, but I will pronounce that the kingdom is undone ! LORD CHATHAM. (1708-1778.)

*This prediction was verified. After a three years' fruitless war, the repeal of the offensive acts was sent out as a peace-offering to the Colonies; but it was too late. The speech from which our extracts are made was delivered in the House of Lords, January 20, 1775, on a motion to withdraw the British troops from Boston.

XXXIX. I WILL TRY.

PALLET, n., a painter's color-board | ARTI-SAN (art'e-zan), n, a person for the hand. skilled in any art. MIN'IA-TURE (min'e-tür), n., a small likeness or picture. THOR'OUGH-LY (thur'ro-ly), ad., with completeness; fully.

OB-LIT'ER-ATE, v. t., to blot out.

Do not say costoom, picter, dook, &c. Heed the y sound of long u.

CAN'VAS, n., a coarse cloth.
Cos'TUME, n., style of dress.
DE-TER', v. t., to stop by fear.
A-DO' (a-doo'), n., trouble; stir.
MA-TURE', a., ripe; full-grown.

1. THERE is a society in London known as the Society of Arts. Its object is the encouragement of talent in the various departments of art. Prizes are awarded by the society, sometimes to painters for their pictures, and sometimes to humble artisans for improvements in weaving, or in the manufacture of bonnets, lace, or artificial flowers.

2. More than half a century ago, a little fellow, named William Ross, not twelve years of age, was talking with his mother about an exhibition of paintings at the society's rooms. William was very fond of paintings, and could himself draw and color with remarkable skill. "Look you, William," said his mother; "I saw some paintings in the exhibition which did not seem to me half as good as some of yours."

--

3. "Do you really think so, mother?" asked he. — "I am sure of it," she replied. "I saw paintings inferior, both in color and drawing, to some that are hanging in your little chamber." William knew that his mother was no flatterer, and he said, "I have a mind to ask permission to hang one or two of my paintings on the walls, at the next exhibition."— "Why not try for one of the prizes?" asked his mother.

4. "O! mother dear, do you think I should stand any chance of success?" said William."Nothing

N

venture, nothing have," said his mother. "You can but try."" And I will try, mother dear," said William. "I have a historical subject in my head, out of which I think I can make a picture."-"What is it, William?"

5. "The death of Wat Tyler. You have heard of him? He led a mob in the time of Richard the Second. Having behaved insolently before the king, at Smithfield, Tyler was struck down by Walworth, Mayor of London, and then killed by the king's at tendants."

6. "It is a bold' subject, William; but I will say nothing to deter you from trying it."—"If I fail, mother, where will be the harm? I can try again.” "To be sure you can, William. So we will not be disappointed should you not succeed in winning the silver pallet offered by the society for the best historical painting."

7. Without more ado, little William went to work. He first acquainted himself with the various costumes of the year 1381. He learnt how the king and the noblemen used to dress, and what sort of clothes were worn by the poor people and laborers, to which class Wat Tyler belonged. He also learnt what sort of weapons were carried in those days.

8. After having given some time to the study of these things, he acquainted himself thoroughly with the historical incidents attending the death of the bold rioter. He grouped, in imagination, the persons who were present at the scene, the king and his attendants, Walworth, the mayor, Wat Tyler himself, and, in the background, some of his ruffianly companions.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

9. The difficulty now was to select that period of the action best fitted for a picture, and to group the figures in attitudes the most natural and expressive.ively Many times did little William make a sketch of the

on

To blot

unsatisfied scene on paper, and then obliterate it, dissatisfied with his work. At times he almost despaired of accomplishing any thing that should do justice to the conception in his mind. But, after many trials and many failures, he completed a sketch which he decided to transfer to canvas. conchored

10. He now labored diligently at his task, and took every opportunity to improve himself in a knowledge of colors and their effects. At length the day for handing in his picture arrived. He then had to wait a month before there was any decision as to its merits.newords. On the day appointed for the announcement of the decision many persons of distinction were present, including ladies. The meeting was presided over by the Duke of Norfolk.

[ocr errors]

11. William's mother was present, of course. She sat waiting the result, with a beating heart. What a proud mother she was when, after the transaction of some uninteresting business, it was announced that the prize of a silver pallet, for the best historical picture, was awarded to the painter of the piece entitled "The Death of Wat Tyler"! Poor Mrs. Ross could not refrain from weeping, she was so very glad.

12. When it was found by the audience that little William Ross was the successful artist, their applause broke forth with enthusiasm. To see such a little fellow gain a prize over competitors of mature age, was a novelty and a surprise. William was summoned. with his picture to the duke's chair, and there he received such counsel and encouragement as were of great service to him in his future career. He afterward became Sir William Ross, miniature painter to Queen Victoria; having risen to fortune and rank by carrying out, with determination and perseverance, his simple promise to his mother of "I will try."

« ZurückWeiter »