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and very new, but the materials upon which I was to operate were very imperfect. Indeed, I fear much, that a propriety of intention is all my merit, and from that, I think, I am to draw little glory; for it is common to me with writers who are the weakest and most trifling. Yet, if your eye can trace any evidence in this trifle to oppose my apprehensions, I shall be very happy. All the humility of my doubts will go away. In two respects, I expose myself very much to censure. I have attacked the nobile officium of the court of session; and I have vindicated the freedom of the Scottish government from the misrepresentations of Dr. Robertson, the historiographer of Scotland. With a thousand people, these things are the greatest of all crimes. It is in England, and not in this country, that I am to find those readers who will be perfectly impartial. I entreat you to accept my most sincere wishes for your prosperity, and that you will believe me, with the most entire respect, my dear Sir, &c.
Dr. STUART to Mr. JONES.
I beg to have the pleasure to submit to your inspection a small Treatise, which I bave published a few years ago, as an introduction to an extensive work on the laws and constitution of England, which I have long meditated, and have in part executed. If you like my ideas, I shall account myself extremely fortunate. If they do not strike you as of importance and interesting, I shall think that I have employed my leisure without advantage. Your line of study has led you to enquire into the history of English manners and jurisprudence. The little work which accompanies this note, is perfectly within this line ; and, as I have the most entire confidence in your penetration and candour, I should be happy to know your opinion of it. I should then be in a state to form a resolution, whether I ought to give order and method to the materials I have collected in the view of prosecuting a subject, which I may perhaps have undertaken without having properly consulted my forces. You will do me the favour to excuse this trouble.
* C. REVICZKI to Mr. JONES.
Warsaw, March 17, 1779. I lately received through Mr. --- your two last learned publications ; a most agreeable and convincing proof of your affectionate remembrance of me. The singular erudition with which your works abound, not only delighted me exceedingly, but almost excited my inclination to resume those studies which I had almost forgotten. Prince Adam Czartoryski, who has cultivated Oriental literature not unsuccessfully, had already afforded me an opportunity of perusing your life of Nadir Shah. He particularly pointed out the passages in the dissertation, in which you make such honourable mention of me, and for which I am indebted to your partiality alone. I regret the loss which the republic of letters must suffer from your desertion, and determination to devote yourself to the altar of Themis : but I trust that Melpomenè, under whose auspices you were born, will compel you to return to your allegiance. I am heartily tired with a residence of seven years on the banks of the Vistula : but the termination of the German war will, I hope, restore me to a more pleasing situation. How much more agreeable would it be to me, if fortune would allow me to gratify my inclinations, by passing my days in England, near you ! But to whatever place my destiny may lead me, my affection for you will continue unabated. Farewell. * Appendix, No. 35.
Mr. JONES to Lord ALTHORPE.
Temple, Feb. 4, 1780. The public piety having given me this afternoon what I rarely can obtain, a short intermission of business; can I employ my leisure more agreeably than in writing to my friend ? I shalt send my letter at random, not knowing whether you are at Althorpe or at Buckingham, but persuading myself that it will find you without much delay. May I congratulate you and our country on your entrance upon the great career of public life? If there ever was a time when men of spirit, sense, and virtue, ought to stand forth, it is the present. I am informed, that you have attended some country meetings, and are on some committees. Did you find it necessary or convenient to speak on the state of the nation ? It is a noble subject, and with your knowledge as well as judgment, you will easily acquire habits of eloquence ; but habits they are, no less than playing on a musical instrument, or handling a pencil: and as the best musicians and finest painters began with playing sometimes out of tune and drawing out of proportion, so the greatest orators must begin with leaving some periods unfinished, and perhaps with sitting down in the middle of a sentence. It is only by continued use that a speaker learns to express his ideas with precision and soundness, and to provide at the beginning of a period for the conclusion of it; but to this facility of speaking, the habit of writing rapidly contributes in a wonderful degree. I would particularly impress this truth upon your mind, my dear friend, because I am fully convinced that an Englishman's real importance in his country, will always be in a compound ratio of his virtue, his knowledge, and his eloquence; without all of which qualities little real utility can result from either of them apart; and I am no less persuaded, that a virtuous and knowing man, who has no natural impediment, may by habit acquire perfect eloquence, as certainly as a healthy man who has the use of his muscles, may learn to swim or to scate. When shall we meet, and where, that we may talk over these and other matters? There are some topics which will be more properly discussed in conversation than upon paper, I inean on account of their copiousness; for believe me I should not be concerned, if all that I write were copied at the post-office, and read before the King in council. At the same time I solemnly declare, that I will not enlist under the banners of a party ; a declaration which is I believe useless, because no party would receive a man, determined as I am, to think for himself. To you alone, my friend, and to your interests, I am firmly attached, both from early babit and from mature reason, from ancient affection unchanged for a single moment, and from a full conviction that such affection was well placed. The views and wishes of all other men, I will analyze and weigh with that suspicion and slowness of belief, which my experience, such as it is, has taught me; and to be more particular, although I will be jealous of the regal part of our constitution, and always lend an arm towards restraining its proud waves within due limits, yet my most vigilant and strenuous efforts shall be directed against any oligarchy that may rise; being convinced, that on the popular part of every government depends its real force, the obligation of its laws, its welfare, its security, its permanence. I have been led insensibly to write more seriously than I had intended; my letters shall not always be so dull: but with so many public causes of grief or of resentment, who can at all times be gay?
In the memoirs of Mr. Jones, the year seventeen-hundred-andeighty forms an interesting æra, in which his occupations were diversified, bis prospects extended, and his hopes expanded, more than at any former period of his life. His professional practice had greatly increased, and suggested the fairest liopes of progressive enlargement, and augmented profit: but as his views were more particularly directed to the vacant seat on the bench of Fort William, in Bengal, and as, from the kindness of Lord North, he was authorized to expect the early attainment of it, he was less solicitous to procure an augmentation of business, which, in the event of success in his India pursuits, he must altogether abandon. In this state of suspense, the political events of the times, received a more than ordinary share of his attention : he did not however enrol himself with any party; but looking up to the constitution and liberty of his country, as the objects of his political adoration, he cultivated an extensive acquaintance with men of all parties, and of the first rank and talents, without any sacrifice of principle or opinion. No man had ever more right to apply to himself the character of “ nullius addictus jurare in verba magistri.” With respect to the American war, he early adopted sentiments upon it unfavourable to the justice of the British cause, and this opinion, once formed, would naturally acquire strength from the protraction of the contest, which he lamented with the feelings of a true patriot and friend to humanity. These reflections dictated a very animated and classical Ode to Liberty, which he composed in Latin, and printed in March ; it strongly displays his genius, erudition, feelings, and political principles*.
Sir Roger Newdigate having declared his intention of vacating his seat in parliament, as representative of the University of Oxford, Mr. Jones was induced by a laudable ambition, and the encouragement of many respectable friends, to come forward as a candidate. The following letters will explain his hopes, his conduct, and disappointment on this occasion.
• Works, vol. iv. p. 581. This ode was published under the title of Julii Melesigoni ad libertatem. The assumed name is formed by a transposition of the letters of Gulielmus Jonesius.