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the praises of the woman with the adu- upon her, by mandat, to prohibite lation of the Queen ; and her disap- him and his countries, assuming therpointment and indignation were there- by to her self a superioritie (not tol fore proportionally great, when she was lerable) ouer other princes, nor he des so roughly attacked by a young and termined to endure, but rather wished handsome foreigner, The courtly her to knowe, that yf there were no writer of the letter, however, swears, more then the auncient amitie bethat she did not lose her dignity in ad- tween Spaine and him, it were no ministering the deserved repriinand to reason, to looke that his subiects the Pole; and he takes care to enjoin should be impedited, much lesse now, Essex to praise her when he should when a strickt obligation of bloud had write to court, for the temper and elo- so conioyned him with the illustrious quence she displayed on the occasion. house of Austria :" concluding, that It is evident enough that such praises if her Matie would not reforme it, he from her favourite were expected, and would. would be grateful to her.

To this I sweare by the liuing God, “ There arriued three daies since that her Malie made one of the best in the cittie an Ambass' out of Po- aunswers, ex tempore, in Latin, that land, a gentleman of excellent fashion, euer I heard, being much mooued to witte, discourse, language, and par- be so challenged in publick, especialson; the Queene was possessed by ly so much against her expectation. some of our new counsellors, that are The wordes of her begining were as cunning in intelligence, as in decy- these: “Suerlie, I can hardlie bephering, that his negotiation tendeth leeue, that yf the King himself were to a proposition of peace. Her Matie present, he would haue used such a in respect that his father the Duke of language, for yf he should, I must Finland had so much honored her, haue thought, that his being a king besydes the lyking she had of this not of many yeares, and that (non de gentleman's commelines and qualities, jure sanguinis, sed jure electionis, imò brougbt to her by reporte, did resolue novitèr electus) may happilie leaue to receaue him publickly, in the him vninformed of that course, wch Chamber of Presence, where most of his fauther and auncestors haue takthe Erles and Noblemen about the en with us, and wch peraduenture Court attended, and made it a great shal be obserued by those that shall day. He was brought in, attired in a liue to come after him ; and as for longe robe of black veluett, well jeweld you, (saied she to the Ambassr,) aland buttond, and cam to kisse her though I perceaue you haue redde Úats hands where she stood vnder many bookes, to fortifie your arguthe state, from whence he straight re- ments in this case, yet am I apt to tired, tene yards of, and then beganne beleeue, that you haue not lighted his oration aloude in Latin, with such upon the chapter, that prescribeth a gallant countenance, as in my lyfe I the forme to be used between kings neuer behelde. The effect of it was and princes; but were it not for the this, that “ the King hath sent him place you hold, to haue so publickly to putt her Matie in minde of the aun- an imputation throwne upon our juscient confederacies betweene the Kings tice, wch as yet neuer failed, wee of Poland and England, that neuer would aunswer this audacitie of yours a monarche in Europe did willinglie in an other style; and for the particu-, neglect their friendship, that he had lars of y' negotiations, wee will apeuer friendlie receaued her marchants point some of our counsell to conferre and subiects of all qualitie, that she with you, to see upon what ground had suffered his to be spoiled, without this clamor of yours hath his fundarestitution; pot for lacke of knowledge tion, who haue showed y'self rather of the violences, but out of meere in- an heralde, then an ambassador.” I justice, not caring to minister reme- assure your LP, though I am not apt die, notwithstanding many particular to wonder, I must confesse before the petitions and letters receaued ; and to liuing Lord, that I neuer heard her confirme her disposition to avowe (when I know her spirits were in pasa these courses (violating both the law sion) speake with better moderation of nature and nations), because ther in my lyfe. were quarels between her and the “ You will thinke it strange that I King of Spaine, she therfor tooke am thus idle, as to use an other bo

WRITING.

dies hand: I assure you, I haue hurte the terms octavo pages of water, duomy thumme at this hower, and be decimo pages, &c.-till the most insigcause the Queene tould me, she was nificant pond should have a distincsorrye you heard not his Latin and tive name, that should represent its hers, I promised her to make you relative size to the mind with suffipartaker of as much as I could re- cient accuracy. To the public the inmember, being as I knew the worst troduction of this plan would be of you would expect from her, and yet essential service; and if it were once the best could come from any other ; generally adopted, no one could be at yf therefore this

my lettre finde you, a loss to conceive the meaning of anand that you write backe, I pray you other. Few persons who read books take notice that you were pleased to are ignorant of the comparative sizes heare of her wise and eloquent an- into which paper is folded ; and if the swer."

appointed standard were to be fools-
Burghley Papers, 1597. cap, many respectable authors would
Mus. Brit. Bibl. Lansdown. find themselves at home.
Vol. 85.

Another expression of unrestricted meaning frequently met with in books,

is “ an arm of the sea.” The writers ON THE PROPER USE OF TERMS IN

who first used this term had certain

ly their reasons for doing so. Perhaps MR EDITOR,

they metaphorically supposed the sea The use of appropriate terms to an animal ; but if they took the idea convey information with effect, or to from the human species, and gave the describe objects with accuracy, is one name of arm to places relatively siof the first beauties in written compo- tuated in the ocean, there is an insition ; and I trust I shall have your congruity in the expression which is indulgence, and that of the readers of really ludicrous ; for no analogy can the Edinburgh Magazine, while I reconcile either an arm or the bottom point out one or two incongruities of the sea to the corresponding parts which are to be met with in the works in the “ human form divine.” Someof many respectable authors.

times we find the phrase, arm of the No expression in descriptive writing sea, put for a navigable inlet 100 miles is more frequent, than that such or in length :-at other tiines a creek such a lake is a “ beautiful sheet of wa- not extending so many yards is so dea ter;"—and yet no term is more indefi- nominated. If the sea is to be a menite or worse understood than this. taphorical monster (and so it must be, To a stranger to the object described, for it has more than a hundred arms it may imply an extent of water fifty in Scotland alone), why do not geomiles in diameter ; while perhaps to graphers lay down the position of its another, it does not suggest a space legs as well as its arms? or, if it has larger than a mill-pond. It is evident no legs, may it not have fins and a that, unless the author who uses a tail? term so undefined, specifies the actual A ridge or chain of mountains runlength and breadth of the water he ning across, or traversing an island or describes, no person can form the a continent, is another phrase in very slightest idea of the dimensions of this common use among our geographical said sheet of water. As an improve writers; whereas the fact is, that the ment on the expression, I take the said ridges, luckily for the stability of liberty to suggest a plan by which the earth's surface, continue, and have such indefinite description may be continued since the creation, in their avoided, without changing the word accustomed places. Knowing of no now in general use. I would term good reason, either moral, political, or all the largest lakes or expanses of orthographical, for using these misapwater, say, for instance, not less plied metaphorical terms, may I beg than fifty miles in length and ten in to suggest, that authors ought to embreadth, a sheet of water ;—those ploy words which, in their meaning, of less dimensions, or twenty-five include the immoveability of th se miles in length and five in breadth, fixtures of nature. I know not, Sir, a half sheet, -those of smaller size á what you may think on this subquarter sheet ;-and lakes still smaller ject; but it is certainly a scrious than these may be distinguished by thing to unsettle all our notions of gravity, by making mountains rise signed to promote trade, and the artie or ascend in majesty, and even pierce ficial system by which they encumthe very clouds which dim them to our bered it, was the result, not of any ill sight.

intention, but of ignorance. Their In the foregoing remarks I refer plans not harmonizing with the great only to works which treat of matters and original laws of society, thwarted of fact,--not to works of fiction. 1 its progress, and counteracted the first have no desire to curb the genius of principles of social improvement.our poets, by taking one word out of Such, however, was unquestionably their vocabulary. Let the roaring of far from their intention. In the case the sea in a tempest, or the soft mur- also of the English system of poormur of its almost quiescent waves in laws, we cannot doubt that the inten. a calm, be granted to those who tions of the legislators were exceedingwould personify a poker, or apostro- ly laudable. Their object was to rephize a coffee-pot. And rivers may lieve the poor at the expence of the glide, rush, and hasten with fearful rich, -to take from those who were velocity,--hend, twist, and stretch;- amply provided with all the superor, if they please, steal gently along, fluities of life what was necessary for and kiss the wild-flowers which over- the support of the destitute. The inhang their banks, in peace, and with- tention was here benevolent in the out molestation from me ;-provided extreme. But the evils which have it be always understood, that these flowed from this erring benevolence, phrases are merely figures or fictions have taught us the necessity of not of speech, and convey nothing which rashly giving way to appearances, but can disturb our belief of the earth's of rigidly canvassing the merits of all stability, or shake our faith in the those projects of benevolence, howreceived ideas which divide animated ever specious an aspect they may asfrom inanimate matter.

sume, and of examining not merely I am, Sir, yours, &c.

whether the object in view be a good PETER Pangloss, LL.D. one, but whether the means proposF.R. & ASS.

ed afford any chance of accomplishing it. According to these principles, we

propose shortly to examine the nature OBSERVATIONS ON THE PRINCIPLES and policy of the English system of

poor-laws.

As it is by the industry of the laIn the union of integrity and wis- bouring classes that the community at dom consists the perfection of govern- large are provided with food, clothment, and from the want of some one ing, and lodging, it seems at first view of these two essential requisites to go- both reasonable and humane, that vern, every species of mal-administra- when this useful class fall into povertion necessarily flows. In the pas- ty and want, the richer classes, to sing of laws which are directed to the whose comfort they so largely admigeneral good of the community at nister, should contribute to their refarge, and which are wholly uncon- lief; and there is no question, that nected with the personal interests of if, in any season of general distress, the individuals, it is impossible that le- poor could be relieved by the simple gislators can have had any sinister process of assessing the rich, both

In this branch of humanity and sound policy would legislation, therefore, their errors justify the most effectual measures for must proceed, not from a want of in- this purpose. But experience too tegrity, but from a want of wisdom, - fatally proves that the system of gefrom a want of those just and compre- neral assessments on the rich for the hensive views of the nature of society, relief of the poor, produces effects prewithout which no legislator can ever cisely the reverse of those intended ; be qualified to regulate its complex that, so far from relieving their disa concerns. In all those laws, for ex- tress, or in any respect improving ample, which have been passed for the their condition, it plunges them into encouragement of commerce, there is the lowest depths of vice and misery,no reason to believe that their authors degrading their moral habits,--eradie had any other object in view than cating from their minds every feeling what they professed. They really de- of honest independence, reconciling

OF THE POOR-LAWS.

purpose in view.

them to idleness and beggary,--and same length of time. It is equally finally, increasing the distress which evident that, for this it is intended to relieve. Those va- tain proportion of the community

purpose, à cera rious evils have been sometimes as- must consume less, and they are re cribed to the faulty administration of duced to this diminished consumption the system, and many cases of gross by the rise of price. But the system corruption and mismanagement have which we are considering makes a geno doubt been pointed out. But a neral distribution of money among system which professes benevolence, the labourers, that they may be enand which is thus fruitful in all the abled to procure the same quantity of worst of evils, must be wrong not provisions as before ;-or, in other merely in detail, but in principle. words, that they may be enabled to It must have some inherent quality of consume 100 millions when the whole mischief by which so much intended produce only amounts to 90 millions. good is transmuted into so much prac- It is evident, therefore, that for the tical evil. The two great calamities evil of scarcity, a general distribution, to which the labourer is chiefly ex- of money affords no relief whatever. posed, are a want of subsistence or a The other evil to which the laboure want of employment.

er is exposed, namely, a general scarciA want of food may either arise ty of work, can only be adequately refrorn' a deficiency in the usual sup- lieved by increasing the funds of proply, or the same effect may be pro- ductive industry. The employment duced by an over abundant popula- of the poor in work-houses, which is tion. In either case, a smaller sup- the remedy provided by the law, crea ply has to be divided among a larger ates no new fund for the maintenance number of consumers, and in these of labour. It merely diverts a porcircumstances it is evident that a tion of the old stock into a different smaller share must fall to the lot of channel. Even if there were no such each. The deficient supply is divided establishments, the materials which are among the consumers in smaller por- there worked up, would set industry tions by means of a higher price; the in motion under the more careful ina price rising in consequence of the de- spection of the private manufacturer ; ficiency, until the labourer is disabled and the effect of such projects is not from purchasing the same quantity as to increase the funds of industry, but before. The evil falls upon the rich to change their management,---to take in the form of a tax; they use the them froin those who have an interest sme quantity of subsistence as before; in faithfully administering them, and but they purchase it at a higher price. to place them under less careful overa' The wages of the labourer not being seers, where they may be abused or lost. sufficient for this, he is put upon short All such projects, therefore, for the allowance; and it is by his savings relief of the labouring classes, are of that the deficient supply is made to the most mischievous operation. They last out the year. In such cases, the originate in the most mistaken and law has generally interfered to regu- partial views, and manifest an ignora late wages, or to extort money from ance of those great and general laws the rich in order to divide it among on which the structure of society is the poor, the principle in either case framed, and to which, all subordinate being the same, namely, the making & regulations ought to be accommodate general distribution of money among ed. the labourers to enable them to con- But although the evil of this syssume the same quantity of a scarcer tem be now generally admitted, it has commodity. We shall suppose the been acted upon so universally, and to annual consumption of a country to such an extent in England, that it amount to 100 millions of quarters of has become a question of serious difwheat. In consequence of a bad har- ficulty in what manner all its various vest the supply falls short by 10 mil- evils can now be checked. So widely lions. It is clear, therefore, that, by has it spread the evil of mendicity,-so some means or other, the deficient sup- thoroughly has it corrupted the moral ply of 90 millions; in the same manner feeling

of the great mass of the com. as formerly the more abundant supply munity,--and so general, of late years, of 100 millions, must be made to last has been the stagnation of trade, and the same number of consumers the the want of employment, among the

VOL. 1.

to

labouring classes, that a vast train of were either left entirely to their dishelpless dependents are now attached cretion, or no precise rule was preto it, who cannot be suddenly cast off scribed for their conduct; nor was to misery and want. And in this in- any adequate security provided by the deed consists one great evil of every law for the upright administration of erroneous and artificial scheme of po- the funds which they were empowerlicy, that, in the course of time, it es. ed to raise. The statute is framed tablishes itself among the fixed and in vague and general terms. The ob settled arrangements of society, so ject which it proposes is indeed plain that, however sensible we may be of and obvious, as well as the vast powers its mischiefs, we cannot suddenly re- which it creates ; but it contains no move it without producing the most adequate provision for regulating the extensive disorder and mischief. This exercise of these powers; it trusts the naturally creates hesitation among whole practical detail of the measure those who, however they may feel to the discretion of individuals. In the evil, are desirous to accomplish the administration of this system of the proposed reformation at the least compulsory charity, disputes have in possible expence of present misery. consequence been continually arising In the case of the English poor-laws, respecting the legality of the proceedhowever, the malady is not stationary. ings of the church wardens, and reIt is making continual progress-it specting another important point, iš gradually undermining the sound namely, the species of property which and healthy constitution of society, is legally rateable to the parish conand it requires, therefore, to be check- tributions. This has been a most fered by seasonable and vigorous reme- tile subject of legal wrangling, insodies.

much, that the money expended on The system established in Enge law-suits amounted in 1815 land, of a compulsory provision for L.285,000; and amid the series of the relief of the poor, originated in contradictory decisions and statutes the reign of Queen Elizabeth, and by which the subject is perplexed, the various statutes which were pass- there is still ample scope for new ed on this important subject, were doubts and interminable disputes. consolidated into one general law, It is generally believed, that the by the 43d of her reign. This sta- intention of the legislature was to subtüte enacts, that “the churchwar- ject every species of property to condens and overseers” shall take or- tribution. But in practice, so many der from time to time (with the con- difficulties have been experienced in sent of two or more justices) for set- enforcing this law against personal ting to work the children of all such property, that the burden falls almost whose parents shall not be thought exclusively on land and houses, and able to keep and maintain their chil- it has been gradually encroaching dren;

and also for setting to work all upon the income derived from this such persons, married or unmarried, source, until it threatens in some cases having no means to maintain them, its total extinction. At the time and use no ordinary or daily trade of when the 43d Elizabeth was passed, life to get their living by; and also to it might have been easily foreseen, raise by taxation, &c. a convenient that a system of compulsory provision stock of flax, &c. to set the poor on for the relief of the poor, established work ;” and also competent sums of and acted upon throughout the kingmoney for and towards the necessary dom, would necessarily tend to relax relief of the lame, impotent, old, blind, the principle of private exertion, that and such other among them, being the stimulus to industry, frugality, poor and not able to work."

and foresight, being once withdrawn, By this law the churchwardens misery would increase, -that new are invested with the important claimants thus continually arising, power of taxing the people for the the administrators of those funds support of the poor, or for setting to would be gradually overborne by the work poor children, or such as had no importunate solicitations of beggary, employment. All the various details that, in place of any nice discrimi. of the system,--the mode of making nation between the cases of different the assessment,--the species of proclaimants, the easy process would be perty to which it was to be extended, adopted of confounding them all un

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