740 | From Lord Barrington


    Cavendish Square 12th. Feby 1769.

    Dear Sir,

    There were no Packets on this Side the Atlantick the first Wednesday of this Month, which has retarded my writing till I could inform you that the Resolutions which so long ago came down from the House of Peers, were agreed to by the Commons:1 I mean the Resolutions concerning America; concluding with an Address, which tho’ voted by the two Houses, I believe is not approved by five Men in either: Some thinking it too much, & others too little in the present Crisis.2 I am one of those who think the measure futile & in no respect adequate. I am convinced the Town Meeting at Boston3 which assembled the States of the Province against the King’s Authority, & armed the People to resist his forces, was guilty of high Crimes & Misdemeanors, if not of Treason; And that Mr Otis the Moderator (as he is improperly called) of that Meeting together with the Selectmen of Boston who signed the Letters convoking the Convention, should be impeach’d. This would convey terror to the Wicked & factious Spirits all over the Continent, & would shew that the Subjects of Great Britain must not rebel with impunity anywhere. Five or Six Examples are sufficient; and it is right they should be made in Boston, the Only place where there has been actual Crime; for as to the Opinions almost universaly held thoroughout4 America, concerning the Claim of Taxation, I think every man has a right to judge & to speak his Judgement concerning Laws, tho’ he has no right to disobey them. It also seems to me that the Council of Boston which has opposed the calling for Troops & the Quartering of them; which published their answer to the Governour before they had made it, and their proceedings without his knowlege & consent, should no longer be Democraticaly elected; but, like all other Councils be appointed by the Crown. Any measures short of these seem to me trifling and dangerous.

    We have at last expelled Mr Wilkes:5 He will be rechosen for Middlesex, and then declared incapable of sitting in this Parliament according to precedent, after which the County must elect some other person. His Cause seems however drooping very fast, and will I am persuaded be soon forgotten. Tho’ he has been twice chosen Alderman of London, his Brethren will not let him sit among them, if they can help it, and I am told they can.

    I am with my best Comps. to all my Cousins Dear Sir Your Excellency’s most faithful & most obedient Servant


    P S March. 1st. 1769.

    There will be a Cabinet on American affairs in a few days when whatever is or is not to be done will be fixt. The Packett can be kept no longer and goes off to day.

    ALS, RC     BP, 12: 49-52.

    Endorsed: Lord Barrington dat feb 12 & Mar 1 1769 r May 20. FB replied on 30 May.6