Edmund Burke, Speech on Conciliation with America, March 22, 1775

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  • Topic: Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, French Revolution, Samuel Johnson
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Title: Burke's Speech on Conciliation with America Author: Edmund Burke Release Date: May, 2004 [EBook #5655] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first posted on August 5, 2002] Edition: 10 Language: English Character set encoding: ASCII *** START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK, BURKE'S SPEECH ON CONCILIATION WITH AMERICA ***

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BURKE'S SPEECH ON CONCILIATION WITH AMERICA

EDITED WITH INTRODUCTION AND NOTES BY SIDNEY CARLETON NEWSOM TEACHER OF ENGLISH, MANUAL TRAINING HIGH SCHOOL INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA

PREFACE The introduction to this edition of Burke's speech on Conciliation with America is intended to supply the needs of those students who do not have access to a well-stocked library, or who, for any reason, are unable to do the collateral reading necessary for a complete understanding of the text. The sources from which information has been drawn in preparing this edition are mentioned under "Bibliography." The editor wishes to acknowledge indebtedness to many of the excellent older editions of the speech, and also to Mr. A. P. Winston, of the Manual Training High School, for valuable suggestions.

CONTENTS POLITICAL SITUATION EDMUND BURKE

BURKE AS A STATESMAN BURKE IN LITERATURE TOPICS FOR SPECIAL REPORTS BIBLIOGRAPHY SPEECH ON CONCILIATION WITH AMERICA NOTES INDEX

INTRODUCTION POLITICAL SITUATION In 1651 originated the policy which caused the American Revolution. That policy was one of taxation, indirect, it is true, but none the less taxation. The first Navigation Act required that colonial exports should be shipped to England in American or English vessels. This was followed by a long series of acts, regulating and restricting the American trade. Colonists were not allowed to exchange certain articles without paying duties thereon, and custom houses were established and officers appointed. Opposition to these proceedings was ineffectual; and in 1696, in order to expedite the business of taxation, and to establish a better method of ruling the colonies, a board was appointed, called the Lords Commissioners for Trade and Plantations. The royal governors found in this board ready sympathizers, and were not slow to report their grievances, and to insist upon more stringent regulations for enforcing obedience. Some of the retaliative measures employed were the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus, the abridgment of the freedom of the press and the prohibition of elections. But the colonists generally succeeded in having their own way in the end, and were not wholly without encouragement and sympathy in the English Parliament. It may be that the war with France, which ended with the fall of Quebec, had much to do with this rather generous treatment. The Americans, too, were favored by the Whigs, who had been in power for more than seventy years. The policy of this great party was not opposed to the...
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