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to see in this country. The same observation will, on the whole, apply also to their clergy, concerning whom the experience of this country can hardly justify an opinion, that they were very learned or able men as a body, although as such they are decent and inoffensive, and so far respectable. The exaggeration, however, of the imputed merit does not affect the justness of the argument. Men ought not to have been degraded merely because, as a class, they were neither distinguished for eminent wis. dom or virtue, if, with a mediocrity of abilities and good dispositions, they could by certain regulations be made useful in their former rank, of which experience might shew the probability.

There have been, and

in free and well constituted governments, classes not distinguished by qualities of the head or heart, beyond classes somewhat lower, the aggregate of whose power, exertions, and influence, has a beneficial effect on the community at large. With regard to the clergy, their use as a body must be, and was great, even with

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their ordinary attainments. Policy, therefore, required that they should be preserved in that situation of respect in which their use could have been the greatest ; and justice required that there should be no confiscation where there was no delinquency. It was not necessary to magnify the characters of the French noblesse and clergy as a warning to England. Educated in a free country, with every spur to the exercise of unprejudiced reason, our nobility were much superior, As A BODY, to those of France, (however contemptible some individuals may be) as from various causes, national and professional, are the clergy of Britain, AS A BODY, to those under the old government of France.

But though there may be too high colouring in some portions of this extraordinary performance, where is there to be met a work which so completely unfolded the principles of thought and action that guided and prompted the French revolutionists, which so accurately, minutely, and fully


predicted the consequences of such theory and practice, as Burke's REFLEXIONS ON THE REVOLUTION OF FRANCE?

When this production made its appearance, it was by all celebrated as the effort of uncommon genius, although very different notions were entertained concerning its re.-soning. By those who were enamoured of the French liberty, without considering its peculiar nature, adjuncts, and effests, the book was abused as a defence of arbitrary institutions. By those who are averse to untried theories, and resolve to adhere to establishments on the whole good, it was praised as the ablest vindication of the constitution, which experience, a 'surer guide than hypothesis, taught them to revere, and prompted them to love. The first public tribute of gratitude and praise bestowed upon it came from a very respectable and important part of our national establishment,THE UNIVERSITY OF

OXFORD, Many members of that learned body considering Burke's performance as not only an

admirable work of genius, but as a treasure of valuable principles, the most momentous to the friends of English liberty, loyalty, virtue, and religion, proposed that the Uni. versity should confer the degree of LL.D. on its illustrious author.

The following account of the proceedings on that subject are extracted from the Gentleman's Magazine for February 1791:

Mr. Urban, I have always thought it a valuable circumstance in your Magazine, that it has been from its commencement a register of the current literature of the times. From such original documents of the progress or variation in the public opinion respecting religion, taste, and politics, are collected the most interesting materials of literary history. I conceived, therefore, that whatever tends to mark the public opinion of a work so valuable, on so many accounts, as Mr. Burke's - Reflexions, would be acceptable to you. I have sent you the Oxford address to Mr. Burke, on the publication of liis · Re

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flexions, together with Mr. Burke's answer.
You are probably aware, that the Masters
who signed the address, proposed to the
heads of houses that a diploma degree of
LL.D, might be conferred on Burke; and
that the proposal was rejected, from an ap-
prehension, as it has been said, that the
degree would not have met with the unani-
mous votes of the members of convocation.
However that might be, the degree was
certainly not opposed by the heads of houses,
from any disaffection to the cause which
Mr. Burke had so nobly and patriotically
defended. It was rejected by seven heads
against six. For' much the greater part

the rest of the University the following ad-
dress will speak.




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"We whose names are subscribed, resident graduates in the University of Oxford, request you to accept this respectful declaration of our sentiments, as a tribute which we are desirous of paying to splendid ta

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