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seems excessive optimism to those of us who have taught the speech for a decade or two, we should remember that the current of history now sets our way. For every young American there is now meaning in Burke that did not exist in 1913. Never did a school classic carry such a present-day message or furnish so definite an answer to a national demand.

Grateful acknowledgment is made to Longmans, Green and Co., who kindly gave us permission to use the extracts from The American Revolution and George the Third and Charles Fox by G. O. Trevelyan.



December 13, 1918.


An outline.of those "amazing facts of 1775, referred to in the next to the last paragraph of the Preface, is given in this Introduction. The student should read also the Collateral Readings, a compact body of extracts from speeches by Burke, Pitt, and Fox, and excerpts from Histories.


GEORGE III The best introduction to Burke's Conciliation is a picture of what happened in 1758, about Thanks. giving time, in the wild forest of western Pennsylvania. A stockaded fort named Duquesne, which had been held by the French and Indians, was burned at midnight, and the garrison retreated northward. The next afternoon two regiments of English soldiers, who had been toiling westward since early summer, appeared at the edge of the clearing and viewed the smoking ruins. One of the English colonels was George Washington. He was a British officer leading colonial Englishmen under a general from England. If you had called him an "American,” he would have thought you were using a kind of nickname. He and his fellow colonists were proud that they were Englishmen; they gladly and loyally served an English king because he represented the freedom without which they thought life not worth living.

The capture of Duquesne was a victory near the end of the French and Indian War. This was part of a contest that England carried on for seven years to preserve herself against the two great autocracies of Europe, the Bourbons and the Hapsburgs. Englishmen at home and in the colonies were equally concerned in this struggle to make the world safe for English freedom. No colonist felt secure as long as a Bourbon monarch held the continent to the north and west. The colonists rejoiced in 1763 when England won its long fight, when Canada became an English province, and when their English liberties were safe in the new world. When Fort Duquesne was rebuilt, they named it Pittsburgh in honor of William Pitt?, the greatest Englishman of that time, who had done more than any other man to secure the victory in the Seven Years' War. Eight million people in England and two million in the colonies admired him and honored him. Under his leadership the colonists had spent their money and lives to destroy the power of autocracy in the western hemisphere.

Though at this time, as Burke says, “a fierce spirit of liberty was stronger in the English colonies than in any other people of the earth," the colonists felt that they owed their liberty to the English government. Though they could "snuff the approach of tyranny in every tainted breeze,” they had no suspi. cion of the mother country; indeed they felt an "un.

"See his speeches in the Collateral Readings, pp. 243-255.

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