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of having his pocket picked amongst them. But he soon conceived a better opinion of them, when he spied the statue of King Charles the Second standing up in the middle of the crowd, and most of the kings in Baker's Chronicle ranged in order over their heads; from whence he very justly concluded, that an antimonarchical assembly could never choose such a place to meet in once a day.

To continue this good disposition in my friend, after a short stay at Stock's market, we drove away directly for the Mews, where he was not a little edified with the sight of those fine sets of "horses which have been brought over from Hanover, and with the care that is taken of them. He made many good remarks upon this occasion, and was so pleased with his company, that I had much ado to get him out of the stable.

In our progress to St. James's Park (for that was the end of our journey) he took notice, with great satisfaction, that, contrary to his intelligence in the country, the shops were all open and full of business; that the soldiers walked civilly in the streets; that clergymen, instead of being affronted, had generally the wall given them; and that he had heard the bells ring to prayers from morning to night, in some part of the town or another.

As he was full of these honest reflections, it happened very luckily for us, that one of the king's coaches passed by with the three young princesses in it, whom, by an accidental stop, we had an opportunity of surveying for some time: my friend was ravished with the beauty, innocence, and sweetness, that appeared in all their faces. He declared several times, that they were the finest children he had ever seen in all his life; and assured me that, before this

sight, if any one had told him it had been possible for three such pretty children to have been born out of England, he should never have believed them.

We were now walking together in the Park, and, as it is usual for men who are naturally warm and heady, to be transported with the greatest flush of good-nature, when they are once sweetened; he owned to me very frankly, he had been much imposed upon by those false accounts of things he had heard in the country; and that he would make it his business, upon his return thither, to set his neighbours right, and give them a more just notion of the present state of affairs.

What confirmed my friend in this excellent temper of mind, and gave him an inexpressible satisfaction, was a message he received, as we were walking together, from the prisoner, for whom he had given his testimony in his late trial. This person having been condemned for his part in the late rebellion, sent him word that his majesty had been graciously pleased to reprieve him, with several of his friends, in order, as it was thought, to give them their lives; and that he hoped, before he went out of town, they should have a cheerful meeting, and drink health and prosperity to King George,

No. 48. MONDAY, JUNE 4.

Tu tamen, si habes aliquam spem de republica, sive desperas; ea para, meditare, cogita, quæ esse in eo cive ac viro debent, qui sit rempublicam afflictam et oppressam miseris temporibus ac perditis moribus in veterem dignitatem ac libertatem vindicaturus.


THE condition of a minister of state is only suited to persons, who, out of a love to their king and country, desire rather to be useful to the public than easy to themselves. When a man is posted in such a station, whatever his behaviour may be, he is sure, beside the natural fatigue and trouble of it, to incur the envy of some and the displeasure of others; as he will have many rivals, whose ambition he cannot satisfy, and many dependants whose wants he cannot provide for. These are misfortunes inseparable from such public employments in all countries; but there are several others which hang upon this condition of life in our British government, more than any other sovereignty in Europe: as, in the first place, there is no other nation which is so equally divided into two opposite parties, whom it is impossible to please at the same time. Our notions of the public good, with relation both to ourselves and foreigners, are of so different a nature, that those measures, which are extolled by one half of the kingdom, are naturally decried by the other. Besides, that in a British administration, many acts of government are absolutely necessary, in which one of the parties must be favoured and obliged, in opposition to their antagonists. So that the most perfect administration, conducted by the most consummate wisdom and pro

bity, must unavoidably produce opposition, enmity, and defamation, from multitudes who are made happy by it.

Farther, it is peculiarly observed of our nation, that almost every man in it is a politician, and hath a scheme of his own, which he thinks preferable to that of any other person. Whether this may proceed from that spirit of liberty which reigns among us, or from those great numbers of all ranks and conditions, who, from time to time, are concerned in the British legislature, and, by that means, are let into the business of this nation, I shall not take upon me to determine. But for this reason it is certain, that a British ministry must expect to meet with many censurers, even in their own party, and ought to be satisfied, if, allowing to every particular man that his private scheme is wisest, they can persuade him that next to his own plan that of the government is the most eligible.

Besides, we have a set of very honest and wellmeaning gentlemen in England, not to be met with in other countries, who take it for granted they can never be in the wrong, so long as they oppose ministers of state. Those, whom they have admired through the whole course of their lives for their honour and integrity, though they still persist to act in their former character, and change nothing but their stations, appear to them in a disadvantageous light, as soon as they are placed upon state eminences. Many of these gentlemen have been used to think there is a kind of slavery in concurring with the measures of great men, and that the good of the country is inconsistent with the inclinations of the court by the strength of these prejudices, they are apt to fancy a man loses his honesty, from the very

moment that it is made the most capable of being useful to the public; and will not consider that it is every whit as honourable to assist a good minister, as to oppose a bad one.

In the last place, we may observe, that there are greater numbers of persons who solicit for places, and, perhaps, are fit for them, in our own country, than in any other. To which we must add, that, by the nature of our constitution, it is in the power of more particular persons in this kingdom, than in any other, to distress the government when they are disobliged. A British minister must, therefore, expect to see many of those friends and dependants fall off from him, whom he cannot gratify in their demands upon him; since, to use the phrase of a late statesman, who knew very well how to form a party, The pasture is not large enough.'

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Upon the whole, the condition of a British minister labours under so many difficulties, that we find in almost every reign since the conquest, the chief ministers have been new men, or such as have raised themselves to the greatest posts in the government, from the state of private gentlemen. Several of them neither rose from any conspicuous family, nor left any behind them, being of that class of eminent persons, whom Sir Francis Bacon speaks of, who, like comets or blazing-stars, draw upon them the whole attention of the age in which they appear, though nobody knows whence they came, nor where they are lost. Persons of hereditary wealth and title have not been over forward to engage in so great a scene of cares and perplexities, nor to run all the risks of so dangerous a situation. Nay, many whose greatness and fortune were not made to their hands, and had sufficient qualifications and opportunities of

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