1998.1422

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To the Independent Electors of the Borough of Steyning
“My Dear Friends and Countrymen”, by “An Inhabitant of Steyning”.

"PERMIT me to address a few words to you upon your late Triumph in the recovery of your long-lost Freedom. I trust they spring from the effusions of an honest and grateful heart. Not to rejoice would be not to feel myself a Man If there is an Individual in Steyning, whose heart is so callous as not to be warmed with that Triumph,. I hope he is, and ever will remain, a stranger to me. Freedom of Election, my Friends, is absolutely necessary, both to our political and moral existence; and if that freedom be not speedily restored throughout the whole Kingdom, we must soon All sink into one general mass of corruption; and our Posterity will have to curse our worse than timid lives and conduct. Its Enemies, alas! Know not what Evil they are doing; or, surely, they would not be so ready, like hungry Esau, to sell their Birth-right for a Mess of Pottage; and, my Friends, it cannot be too much lamented, we have so many modern Esaus. What would our Adversaries, if successful, have had to boast? Is an abridged and partial Freedom; - a deprivation of just and equal Rights; - a Sacrifice at every Election, of all that, as Men and Britons, we hold most dear, the free exercise of our Franchises? Are these, permit me to ask, without offence, the causes at which our enemies would rejoice? Is this the way they would serve their God and Country, in their generation? Let them, in the moments of sober reflection, answer these questions to their own Hearts.
Etc., etc. . . .
May the name of HOWARD ever be dear to our remembrance and may we never forget to support that just spirit of Liberty so congenial to his Virtues and our own Happiness."


[1790-1830]

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