Common Sense eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 65 pages of information about Common Sense.

First. —­ It is the custom of nations, when any two are at war, for some other powers, not engaged in the quarrel, to step in as mediators, and bring about the preliminaries of a peace:  but while America calls herself the Subject of Great Britain, no power, however well disposed she may be, can offer her mediation.  Wherefore, in our present state we may quarrel on for ever.

Secondly. —­ It is unreasonable to suppose, that France or Spain will give us any kind of assistance, if we mean only, to make use of that assistance for the purpose of repairing the breach, and strengthening the connection between Britain and America; because, those powers would be sufferers by the consequences.

Thirdly. —­ While we profess ourselves the subjects of Britain, we must, in the eye of foreign nations, be considered as rebels.  The precedent is somewhat dangerous to their peace, for men to be in arms under the name of subjects; we, on the spot, can solve the paradox:  but to unite resistance and subjection, requires an idea much too refined for common understanding.

Fourthly. —­ Were a manifesto to be published, and despatched to foreign courts, setting forth the miseries we have endured, and the peaceable methods we have ineffectually used for redress; declaring, at the same time, that not being able, any longer, to live happily or safely under the cruel disposition of the British court, we had been driven to the necessity of breaking off all connections with her; at the same time, assuring all such courts of our peaceable disposition towards them, and of our desire of entering into trade with them:  Such a memorial would produce more good effects to this Continent, than if a ship were freighted with petitions to Britain.

Under our present denomination of British subjects, we can neither be received nor heard abroad:  The custom of all courts is against us, and will be so, until, by an independance, we take rank with other nations.

These proceedings may at first appear strange and difficult; but, like all other steps which we have already passed over, will in a little time become familiar and agreeable; and, until an independance is declared, the Continent will feel itself like a man who continues putting off some unpleasant business from day to day, yet knows it must be done, hates to set about it, wishes it over, and is continually haunted with the thoughts of its necessity.

APPENDIX

Since the publication of the first edition of this pamphlet, or rather, on the same day on which it came out, the King’s Speech made its appearance in this city.  Had the spirit of prophecy directed the birth of this production, it could not have brought it forth, at a more seasonable juncture, or a more necessary time.  The bloody mindedness of the one, shew the necessity of pursuing the doctrine of the other.  Men read by way of revenge.  And the Speech, instead of terrifying, prepared a way for the manly principles of Independance.

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Common Sense from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.