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voyage is now proposed, to visit a distant peo- | ty, likely to happen in any province, and ple on the other side the globe; not to cheat from what province it can best be supplied in them, not to rob them, not to seize their good time. To facilitate the collecting of lands, or enslave their persons ; but merely this account, and prevent the necessity of ento do them good, and make them, as far as in tering houses and spending time in asking our power lies, to live as comfortably as our- and answering questions, each house is furselves.
nished with a little board, to be hung without “It seems a laudable wish, that all the na- the door during a certain time each year; on tions of the earth were connected by a know- which board are marked certain words, ledge of each other; and a mutual exchange against which the inhabitant is to mark the of benefits: but a commercial nation particu- number and quantity, somewhat in this manlarly should wish for a general civilization of ner: mankind, since trade is always carried on to much greater extent with people who have the arts and conveniences of life, than it can
Men, be with naked
Rice, or Wheat, people, who, however distant from us, are in
Flesh, &c. truth related to us, and whose interest do, in some degree, concern every one who can say, Homo sum, focal
All under sixteen are accounted children, Scheme of a voyage, by subscription, to and all above, men and women. Any other convey the conveniences of life, as fowls, particulars, which the government desires hogs, goats, cattle, corn, iron, &c., to those re-information of, are occasionally marked on the mote regions, which are destitute of them, same boards. Thus the officers, appointed to and to bring from thence such productions, as collect the accounts in each district, have only can be cultivated in this kingdom to the ad- to pass before the doors, and enter into their vantage of society, in a ship under the com- book what they find marked on the board, mand of Alexander Dalrymple.
without giving the least trouble to the famiCatt or bark, from the the coal trade,
ly. There is a penalty on marking falsely, and of 350 tons, estimated at about £ 2000
as neighbours must know nearly the truth of Extra expenses, stores, boats, &c. 3000 each other's account, they dare not expose To be manned with 60 men at 41.
themselves, by a false one, to each other's accuper man, per month.
sation. Perhaps such a regulation is scarcely 240
practicable with us. 12
per ann. 2880
Positions to be examined, concerning national 3
1. ALL food or subsistence for mankind arise Wages and provisions for 3 years 8640
from the earth or waters.
2. Necessaries of life, that are not food, and 13640 all other conveniences, have their value esti
mated by the proportion of food consumed Cargo included, supposed
£ 15000 while we are employed in procuring them. The expenses of this expedition are calcu
3. Ä small people, with a large territory, lated for three years : but the greatest part of the amount of wages will not be wanted till may subsist on the productions of nature, with
no other labour that of gathering the vegetathe ship returns, and a great part of the ex. bles and catching the animals
. pense of provisions will be saved by what is obtained in the course of the voyage, by bar- finds these insufficient, and, to subsist, must
4. A large people, with a small territory, ter, or otherwise, though it is proper to make labour the earth, to make it produce greater provision for contingencies.
quantities of vegetable food, suitable for the
nourishment of men, and of the animals they To Dr. Percival.
intend to eat.
5. From this labour arises a great increase Concerning the provision made in China against of vegetable and animal food, and of materiFamine.
als for clothing, as flax, wool, silk, &c. The I HAVE somewhere read, that in China an superfluity of these is wealth. With this account is yearly taken of the number of peo- wealth we pay for the labour employed in ple, and the quantities of provision produced. building our houses, cities, &c. which are This account is transmitted to the emperor, therefore only subsistence thus metamor. whose ministers can thence foresee a scarci- | phosed.
6. Manufactures are only another shape forty, and perhaps get thirty shillings for that, into which so much provisions and subsistence which cost him but twenty. are turned, as were equal in value to the manu 12. Finally, there seem to be but three factures produced. This a
s appears from hence, ways for a nation to acquire wealth. The that the manufacturer does not, in fact, obtain first is by war, as the Romans did, by plunderfrom the employer, for his labour, more than a ing their conquered neighbours. This is robmere subsistence, including raiment, fuel, and bery. The second by commerce, which is shelter: all which derive their value from the generally cheating. The third by agriculprovisions consumed in procuring them. ture, the only honest way, wherein man re
7. The produce of the earth, thus convert-ceives a real increase of the seed thrown into ed into manufactures, may be more easily car- the ground, in a kind of continual miracle ried to distant markets than before such conver- wrought by the hand of God in his favour, as a sion.
reward for his innocent life, and his virtuous 8. Fair commerce is, where equal values industry.
B. FRANKLIN. are exchanged for equal, the expense of trans April 4, 1769. port included. Thus, if it costs A in England as much labour and charge to raise a bushel of wheat, as it costs B in France to produce four gallons of wine, then are four gallons of and addressed to the editors of the British Repository
The following extracts of a letter signed Columella, wine the fair exchange for a bushel of wheat, for select Papers on Agriculture, Arts, and ManufacA and B meeting at half distance with their tures (see Vol. I.) will prepare those who read it, for
the next paper commodities to make the exchange. The ad
“GENTLEMEN,-There is now publishing in France a vantage of this fair commerce is, that each periodical work, called Ephemeridis du citoyen, in party increases the number of his enjoyments, which several points, interesting to those concerned in having, instead of wheat alone, or wine alone, able hands. In looking over one of the volumes of this the use of both wheat and wine.
work a few days ago, I found a little piece written by 9. Where the labour and expense of pro- bours had taken from the London Chronicle in 1766.
one of our countrymen, and which our vigilant neighducing both commodities are known to both The author is a gentleman well known to every man of parties, bargains will generally be fair and letters in Europe, and perhaps there is none, in this age, equal. Where they are known to one party
to whom mankind in general are more indebted.
“That this piece may not be lost to our own country, only, bargains will often be unequal, know- I beg you will give it a place in your Repository: it ledge taking its advantage of ignorance.
was written in favour of the farmers, when they suffered 10. Thus he, that carries one thousand | dered by the mob in many places."
so much abuse in our public papers, and were also plun. bushels of wheat abroad to sell, may not probably obtain so great a profit thereon, as if he had first turned the wheat into manufactures,
To Messieurs the Public. by subsisting therewith the workmen while on the Price of Corn, and the Management of
the Poor. producing those manufactureş: since there are many expediting and facilitating methods I am one of that class of people, that feeds of working, not generally known; and stran- you all, and at present abused by you all ;-gers to the manufactures, though they know in short, I am a farmer. pretty well the expense of raising wheat, are By your newspapers we are told, that God unacquainted with those short methods of had sent a very short harvest to some other working, and thence, being apt to suppose countries of Europe. I thought this might more labour employed in the manufactures be in favour of Old England; and that now than there really is, are more easily imposed we should get a good price for our grain, on in their value, and induced to allow more which would bring millions among us, and for them than they are honestly worth. make us flow in money: that to be sure is
11. Thus the advantage of having manu- scarce enough. factures in a country does not consist, as is But the wisdom of government forbade the commonly supposed, in their highly advancing exportation. the value of rough materials, of which they Well, says I, then we must be content with are formed; since, though sixpennyworth of the market price at home. flax may be worth twenty shillings when work No; say my lords the mob, you sha'nt have ed into lace, yet the very cause of its being that. Bring your corn to market if you dare; worth twenty shillings, is, that, besides the -we'll sell it for you, for less money, or take flax, it has cost nineteen shillings and sixpence it for nothing. in subsistence to the manufacturer. But the Being thus attacked by both ends of the advantage of manufactures is, that under their constitution, the head and tail of government, shape provisions may be more easily carried what am I to do? to a foreign market; and by their means Must I keep my corn in the barn, to feed our traders may more easily cheat strangers. and increase the breed of rats ?-be it so; they Few, where it is not made, are judges of the cannot be less thankful than those I have been value of lace. The importer may demand' used to feed.
Are we farmers the only people to be an act of indemnity ought to pass in favour of grudged the profits of our honest labour ? the ministry, to secure them from the conseAnd why? One of the late scribblers against quences of having acted illegally.- If so, pass us gives a bill of fare of the provisions at my another in favour of the mob." Others say, daughter's wedding, and proclaims to all the some of the mob ought to be hanged, by way world, that we had the insolence to eat beef of example---- If so, ---but I say no more than and pudding Has he not read the precept I have said before, when you are sure that in the good book, thou shalt not muzzle the you have a good principle, go through with it. mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn ; You say, poor labourers cannot afford to or does he think us less worthy of good living buy bread at a high price, unless they had than our oxen?
higher wages.- Possibly.-But how shall we O, but the manufacturers ! the manufac- farmers be able to afford our labourers higher turers ! they are to be favoured, and they wages, if you will not allow us to get, when must have bread at a cheap rate!
we might have it, a higher price for our cord ? Hark ye, Mr. Oaf:- The farmers live By all that I can learn, we should at least splendidly, you say. And pray, would you have had a guinea a quarter more if the exhave them hoard the money they get? Their portation had been allowed. And this money fine clothes and furniture, do they make them England would have got from foreigners. themselves, or for one another, and so keep But, it seems, we farmers must take so the money among them? Or, do they employ much less, that the poor may have it so much these your darling manufacturers, and so cheaper. scatter it again all over the nation ?
This operates then as a tax for the mainThe wool would produce me a better price, tenance of the poor. A very good thing, you if it were suffered to go to foreign markets; will say. But I ask, why a partial tax? why but that, Messieurs the Public, your laws will laid on us farmers only? If it be a good thing, not permit. It must be kept all at home, that pray, messieurs the Public, take your share our dear manufacturers may have it the of it, by indemnifying us a little out of your cheaper. And then, having yourselves thus public treasury. In doing a good thing, there lessened our encouragement for raising sheep, is both honour and pleasure you are welcome you curse us for the scarcity of mutton! to your share of both.
I have heard my grandfather say, that the For my own part, I am not so well satisfarmers submitted to the prohibition on the fied of the goodness of this thing. I am for do exportation of wool, being made to expect and ing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion believe, that when the manufacturer bought about the means. I think the best way of do his wool cheaper, they should also have their ing good to the poor, is, not making them eacloth cheaper. But the deuce a bit. It has sy in poverty, but leading or driving them out been growing dearer and dearer from that of it. In my youth I travelled much, and I day to this. How so? Why, truly, the cloth observed in different countries, that the more is exported : and that keeps up the price. public provisions were made for the poor the
Now if it be a good principle, that the ex- less they provided for themselves, and of portation of a commodity is to be restrained, course became poorer. And on the contrary, that so our people at home may have it the the less was done for them, the more they did cheaper; stick to that principle, and go for themselves, and became richer. There is thorough stitch with it. Prohibit the export- no country in the world where so many proation of your cloth, your leather, and shoes, visions are established for them; so many your iron-ware, and your manufactures of all hospitals to receive them when they are sick sorts, to make them all cheaper at home. And or lame, founded and maintained by voluncheap enough they will be, I will warrant tary charities ; so many almshouses for the youấtill people leave off making them. aged of both sexes, together with a solemn
Some folks seem to think they ought never general law made by the rich to subject their to be easy till England becomes another Lub- estates to a heavy tax for the support of the berland, where it is fancied the streets are poor. Under all these obligations, are our paved with penny-rolls, the houses tiled with poor modest, humble, and thankful ? And do pancakes, and chickens, ready roasted, cry, they use their best endeavours to maintain eome eat me.
themselves, and lighten our shoulders of this I say, when you are sure you have got a burden? On the contrary, I affirm, that there good principle, stick to it, and carry it through is no country in the world in which the poor - I hear it is said, that though it was necessa- are more idle, dissolute, drunken, and insolent. ry and right for the ministry to advise a pro- The day you passed that act you took away hibition of the exportation of corn, yet it was from before their eyes the greatest of all incontrary to law; and also, that though it was ducements to industry, frugality, and sobriety, contrary to law for the mob to obstruct wa- by giving them a dependence on somewhat gons, yet it was necessary and right. Just else than a careful accumulation during youth the same thing to a tittle. Now they tell me, I and health, for support in age or sickness. In
short, you offered a premium for the encou- character of the Romans from defamation, inragement of idleness, and you should not now troduced the law whereby libelling was inwonder, that it has had its effect in the in- volved in the penalties of treason against the crease of poverty. Repeal that law, and state. This law established his tyranny, and you will soon see a change in their manners; for one mischief which it prevented, ten thouSaint Monday and Saint Tuesday, will soon sand evils, horrible and afflicting, sprung up cease to be holidays. Six days shalt thou la- in its place. Thenceforward every person's bour, though one of the old commandments life and fortune depended on the vile breath long treated as out of date, will again be look- of informers. The construction of words ed upon as a respectable precept; industry being arbitrary, and left to the decision of the will increase, and with it plenty among the judges, no man could write or open his mouth lower people;
their circumstances will mend, without being in danger of forfeiting his head. and more will be done for their happiness by One was put to death for inserting in his inuring them to provide for themselves, than history, the praises of Brutus. Another for could be done by dividing all your estates styling Cassius the last of the Romans. Ca
ligula valued himself for being a notable Excuse me, messieurs the Public, if upon dancer; and to deny, that he excelled in that this interesting subject, I put you to the trou- manly accomplishment, was high treason. ble of reading a little of my nonsense; I am This emperor raised his horse, the name of sure I have lately read a great deal of yours, which was Incitatus, to the dignity of consul; and therefore from you (at least from those of and though history is silent, 1 do not question you who are writers) I deserve a little indul- but it was a capital crime, to show the least gence.--I am yours, &c. ARATOR.* contempt for that high officer of state! Suppose
then any one had called the prime minister a On Freedom of Speech and the Press.- stupid animal, the emperor's council might
Published in the Pennsylvania Gazette, of argue, that the malice of the libel was the November, 1737.
more aggravated by its being true; and conFREEDOM of speech is a principal pillar of this illustrious magistrate to a breach of the
sequently more likely to excite the family of a free government: when this support is taken away, the constitution of a free society cution would to us appear ridiculous ; yet, if
peace, or to acts of revenge. Such a proseis dissolved, and tyranny is erected on its we may rely upon tradition, there have been ruins. Republics and limited monarchies de- fornterly, proconsuls in America, though of rive their strength and vigour from a popular more malicious dispositions, hardly superior in examination into the actions of the magis- understanding to the consul Incitatus, and trates; this privilege in all ages has been, who would have thought themselves libelled and always will be abused. The best of men to be called by their proper names. could not escape the censure and envy of the
Nero piqued himself on his fine voice and times they lived in. Yet this evil is not so skill in music: no doubt a laudable ambition ! great as it may appear at first sight. A ma- He performed in public, and carried the prize gistrate who sincerely aims at the good of so- of excellence: it was afterwards resolved by ciety, will always have the inclinations of a all the judges as good law, that whosoever great majority on his side, and an impartial would insinuate the least doubt of Nero's preposterity will not fail to render him justice.
eminence in the noble art of fiddling, ought Those abuses of the freedom of speech, are to be deemed a traitor to the state. the exercises of liberty. They ought to be
By the help of inferences, and innuendoes, repressed; but to whom dare we commit the treasons multiplied in a prodigious manner. care of doing it. An evil magistrate intrusted Grief was treason :-a lady of noble birth was with power to punish for words, would be put to death for bewailing the death of her armed with a weapon the most destructive murdered son :-silence was declared an and terrible. Under pretence of pruning off overt act, to prove the treasonable purposes the exuberant branches he would be apt to of the heart: looks were construed into treadestroy the tree.
son :- a serene open aspect was an evidence, It is certain, that he who robs another of that the person was pleased with the calamihis moral reputation, more richly merits a ties that befel the emperor :gibbet that if he had plundered him of his thoughtful countenance was urged against purse on the highway. Augustus Cæsar, the man that wore it, as a proof of his plotting under the specious pretext of preserving the against the state :-dreams were often made
• Mr. Owen Ruff head, being employed in preparing capital offences. A new species of informers a digest of the British poor laws, communicated a copy of went about Rome, insinuating themselves into it to Dr. Franklin for his advice. Dr. Franklin recome all companies to fish out their dreams, which printing on a sheet of paper, and dispersing, in each pa the holy priests, (O nefarious wickedness !) rish, annual accounts of every disbursement and re
interpreted into high treason. The Romans ceipt of its officers. In some of the American states this measure is pursued with success.
were so terrified by this strange method of
juridical and penal process, that far from dis- of Theodosius.* If any person spoke ill of the covering their dreams, they durst not own emperor, through a foolish rashness, and inthat they slept. In this terrible situation, advertency, it is to be despised ; if out of madwhen every one had so much cause to fear, ness, it deserves pity ; if from malice and even fear itself was made a crime. Caligula, aversion, it calls for mercy. when he put his brother to death, gave it as a Her successor king James I. was a prince reason to the senate, that the youth was afraid of a quite different genius and disposition; of being murdered. To be eminent in any he used to say, that while he had the power virtue, either civil or military, was the great- of making judges and bishops, he could have est crime a man could be guilty of.-Ö vir- what law and gospel he pleased. Accordtutes certissemum exitium.
ingly he filled those places with such as prosThese were some of the effects of the Ro- .tituted their professions to his notions of preman law against libelling :—those of the Bri- rogative. Among this number, and I hope it tish kings that aimed at despotic power, or is no discredit to the profession of the law, the oppression of the subject, continually en- its great oracle, sir Edward Coke, appears. couraged prosecutions for words.
The star-chamber, which in the time of EliHenry VII. a prince mighty in politics, zabeth, had gained a good repute, became an procured that act to be passed, whereby the intolerable grievance, in the reign of this jurisdiction of the star-chamber, was confirm- learned monarch. ed and extended. Afterwards Empson and But it did not arrive at its meridian altitude, Dudley, two voracious dogs of prey, under the till Charles I. began to wield the sceptre. As protection of this high court, exercised the he had formed a design to lay aside parliamost merciless acts of oppression. The sub- ments, and subvert the popular part of the conjects were terrified from uttering their griefs, stitution, he very well knew, that the form of while they saw the thunder of the star-cham- government could not be altered, without lay, ber pointed at their heads. This caution, ing a restraint on freedom of speech, and the however, could not prevent several danger- liberty of the press: therefore he issued his ous tumults and insurrections: for 'when the royal mandate, under the great seal of Engtongues of the people are restrained, they com- land, whereby he commanded his subjects, unmonly discharge their resentments by a more der pain of his displeasure, not to prescribe to dangerous organ, and break out into open acts him any time for parliaments. Lord Claren. of violence.
don, upon this occasion, is pleased to write During the reign of Henry VIII. a high " that all men took themselves to be prohibitspirited monarch! every light expression, ed under the penalty of censure (the censure which happened to displease him, was constru- of the star-chamber,) which few men cared to ed by his supple judges, into a libel, and some- incure so much as to speak of parliaments; times extended to high treason. When queen or so much as to mention, that parliaments Mary of cruel memory ascended the throne, were again to be called." the parliament, in order to raise a fence The king's ministers, to let the nation see against the violent prosecutions for words, they were absolutely determined to suppress which had rendered the lives, liberties, and all freedom of speech, caused a prosecution to properties of all men precarious, and, perhaps be carried on by the attorney-general against dreading the furious persecuting spirit of this three members of the house of commons, for princess, passed an act whereby it was de words spoken in that house, Anno. 1628. The clared, " That if a libeller doth go so high, as member pleaded to the information, that exto libel against king or queen, by denuncia- pressions in parliament ought only to be extion, the judges shall lay no greater fine on amined and punished there. This notwithhim than one hundred pounds, with two standing, they were all three condemned as months imprisonment, and no corporeal pu- disturbers of the state ; one of these gentlenishment: neither was this sentence to be men, sir John Elliot, was fined two thousand passed on him, except the accusation was pounds, and sentenced to lie in prison till it fully proved by two witnesses, who were to was paid. His lady was denied admittance produce a certificate of their good demeanour for the credit of their report.'
* Si quis imperatori malediceret non statim injuria This act was confirmed by another, in the censetur et eo nomine punitur; sed distinguitur, an
ex levitate processerit, et sic contemnitur, an ex insaseventh year of the reign of queen Elizabeth ; nia et miseratione digna censetur, an ex injuria et sic only the penalties were heightened to two remittenda declaratur.
Note.-A Rescript was an answer delivered by the emhundred pounds and three months imprison- peror, when consulted in some difficult question or ment. Notwithstanding she rarely punished point in law: the judges were wholly to be directed by invectives, though the malice of the papists the will of the king gives vigour to the Lax, (Voluntos rowas indefatigable in blackening the brightest gis habet vigorem legis) is a fundamental principle in the characters, with the most impudent falsehoods, civil
law. The rescript mentioned above, was not only
delivered by Theodosius, but by two emperors, Honorius she was often heard to applaud that rescript and Arcadius.