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not only continue, but that the Indians, headed by the French, those eternal Enemies of Peace, Liberty, and Britons, will carry their Inroads still farther into the Country, and reach even to us. By the Desertion of our remote Settlements, the Frontiers are approaching every Day nearer and nearer to us: and if we cannot stand our Ground now, when we have above an hundred Miles of a thick-settled Country between us and the Enemy, much less shall we be able, when our Strength is weakened by so vast a Loss of Men, Arms and Riches, and we lie exposed to their immediate Incursions. Some cry, “Let the Enemy come down to us, and then we will fight them." But this is the trifling Excuse of Cowardice or Security, and not the Language of Prudence and Fortitude. who make this Plea, if the Enemy should take them at their Word, and make them so near a Visit, would be as forward in Flight as they are now backward to take up arms.
Such, my Brethren, such, alas! is the Present State of our Country: it bleeds in a thousand veins; and without a timely Remedy, the Wound will prove mortal. ... The mean, sneaking Wretch, that can desert the Cause of his Country in such an Exigency; his Country, in the Blessings of which he shared, while in Peace and Prosperity; and which is therefore entitled to his Sympathy and Assistance in the Day of its Distress; that cowardly ungrateful Wretch sins against God and his Country, and deserves the Curse of both. Such a Conduct in such a Conjuncture, is a moral Evil, a gross Weakness; and exposes the Wretch to the heavy Curse of God both in this and the eternal World. ...
He that hath determined the Bounds of our Habitation, hath planted us in a Land of Liberty and Plenty; a Land, till lately, unalarmed with the Terrors of War, and unstained with human Blood. Indeed, all Things considered, there are but few such happy Spots upon our Globe. And must it not highly provoke our divine Benefactor, to see a People thus distinguished with Blessings, so insensible of their Worth, so ungrateful for them and so unacquainted with their own Unworthiness to receive them? What can be more evidential of their undue Apprehensions of the Worth of these Blessings, than their being so little concerned to secure and recover them? The generality among us have acted as if their Interests at Stake were so trifling, that it would not be worth while to take Pains, or encounter dangers, to preserve them. What greater Evidence can be given of Ingratitude, than a supine Neglect of these Blessings, and such a stupidly tame and irresisting Resignation of them into bloody and rapacious Hands?
And what can be more evidential of a proud Insensibility of our Unworthiness of such Blessings, than our being so inapprehensive of losing them, even in the most threatening and dangerous Circumstances ? Our Countrymen in general have acted as if Beings of their Importance and Merit might certainly rest in the quiet, unmolested Possession of their Liberty and Property, without any one daring to disturb them, and without their doing any Thing for their own Defence; or as if neither God nor Man could strip them of their Enjoyments.
May we not suppose that divine Providence has permitted our Body Politick to suffer Wound after Wound, and baffled all our languid Efforts, in order to give it Sensibility, and rouse us to exert our Strength in more vigorous Efforts? Has not the Curse of God lain heavy upon our Country, because we have done the Work of the Lord deceitfully, and kept back our Swords from Blood?
And shall this Guilt increase from Year to Year, till we are entirely crushed with the enormous Load? Shall neither the Fear of JEHOVAH'S Curse, nor the Love of our Country, nor even the Love of ourselves, and our own personal Interest, constrain us at Length to relieve our ravaged Country, and defend the Blessings which God has entrusted to our Custody, as well as lent us to enjoy?
Oh! for the all-prevailing Force of Demosthenes's Oratory—but I recall my Wish, that I may correct it-Oh! for the Influence of the Lord of Armies, the God of Battles, the Author of true Courage and every heroic Virtue, to fire you into Patriots and Soldiers this Moment ! Ye young and hardy Men, whose very Faces seem to speak that God and Nature formed you for Soldiers, who are free from the Incumbrance of Families depending upon you for Subsistence, and who are perhaps but of little Service to Society, while at Home, may I not speak for you, and declare as your Mouth, “Here we are, all ready to abandon our Ease, and rush into the glorious Dangers of the Field, in Defence of our Country?" Ye that love your Country, enlist ;
” for honour will follow you in Life or Death in such a Cause.
S. Davies, The Curse of Cowardice (London, 1758), II-18.
II. Prediction of a Commercial
Served as governor in New Jersey and Massachusetts. One of the most sagacious prophets of American great
WERE some such arrangements taken for a revision and further establishment of the laws of trade, upon the principle of extending the British
general commerce, by encouraging the trade of the colonies, in subordination to, and in coincidence therewith, the trade of the colonies would be administered by that true spirit from whence it rose, and by which it acts; and the true application of the benefits which arise to a mother country from its colonies would be made. Under this spirit of administration, the government, as I said above, could not be too watchful to carry its laws of trade into effectual execution. —But under the present state of those laws, and that trade, there is great danger that any severity of execution, which should prove effectual in the. cases of the importation into the colonies of foreign European and East-India goods, might force the Americans to trade for their imports, upon terms, on which the trade could not support itself, and therefore become in the event a means to bring on the necessity of these Americans manufacturing for themselves. Nothing does at present, with that active and acute people, prevent their going into manufactures, except the proportionate dearness of labour, as referred to the terms on which they can import; but encrease the price of their imports to a certain degree, let the extent of their settlements, either by policy from home or invasion of Indians abroad, be confined and let their foreign trade and navigation be, in some measure, suppressed; their paper-currency limited within too narrow