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rights belonging to mankind, independent of all human granit; and not derived from any compact; that of all the rights inhe sent in human nature, that of thinking for ourselves, and fol. lowing the conviction of our own judgments in relation to the object of our faith, worship, and religious obedience, is the most sacred and incontestable, and is, in every view of it, entitled to the most careful protection. He thews that the preservation of the great natural and absolute rights of men is one of the chief ends, or rather the very first intention, for which civil societies were instituted, and the rulers of it invested with power.

• What, says he, is the consequence from these premises ? Maft Şt not be this, that in all governments, the rights of conscience should have a principal place assigned them in the care of those, to whom the protection of their fellow.creatures is committed ? If the fecuring of equal, impartial liberty in all those instances of it in which it is not injurious to others, be so much the object of every equitable, wise, and well constituted system of laws, that all needless encroachments upon it are deviations from the spirit, which ought to be diffused through all laws, and impair the very benefit which they pught to confirm ; can it be supposed that the rights of conscience ought not to be guarded from violation: To take for granted a renunciation of these rights, when men enter into society, is, of all presumptions, the most groundless. They are the last rights, which men can ever be imagined to give up to be modelled at the pleafure of others ; nor is there any one principle connected with their fubmission to governors in other respects, from which such an inference can be deduced. Does it follow, that because the magiftraté is entrusted with authority to decide disputes between us and our fellow.citizens concerning property, that he is to determine points, which lie only between God and our own consciences ? Because it is allowed to be his office to guard the peace of his subjects, and to inflict punishments for this purpose on those, who unjustly difturb it; is it to be taken for granted, that he is to dictate to them what sale of faith they shall adopt, and in what manner they are to worship the Deity, when it is allowed on all hands, that of these things the will of God is the only rule, and that no worthip can be acceptable to him, but what is accompanied with the fincere conviction of him who offers it? Nay, there is no presumption in advancing a step further, and asserting, that such is the nature of this right; and in this respect, it stands upon a foundation peculiar to itself, and is diftinguished from every other right, that it CANNOT be given up. Property may be religned, transferred, or submitted to the regulation of others.-A man may in many instances relinquish his ease, and subject himself to inconveniences, and in so doing, act not only an innocent but a laudable part.-Cases may occur, in which a man may sacrifice life itself, and the facrifice may merit the highest applause. But his CONSCIENCE, he cannot resign. To prove all things and hold fast that which is good, is not only a privilege but a duty; an obligation laid upon him, by the very nature of religion


and virtue, and from which he cannot discharge himself, without departing from the principles of both. It must always remain enrire to him; nor, while the principles of the most reasonable liberty are allowed to subfift in their due exterit, can any attempt be con. {iftently made to take it from him.

• There is no difficulty in discerning, that while I am speaking in this manner, an objection will offer itself to the reader; and that it will be supposed, that my own reasoning may be retorted again! me. The more important conscience is represented, the more it will be faid, it falls under the inspection of the magistrate. To exempt it thus from his jurisdiction, will be thought laying a foundation for excluding him by degrees, from taking that care of the safety of his subjects which is conferred to be a part of his ofiice. Religion, it will be urged, may be made a plea for any thing; and if governors must never interpose to restrain it, there is no enormiry but what will pass unpunished. But these objections arise entirely from imperfect views of the principle, which is here asserted.. To contend for a right to think for themselves in fome, and deny it to others, mighe indeed be chargeable with these consequences. But to contend for this as a right, to which EVERY INDIVIDUAL has a claim equally valid and clear, never can be justly liable to such an imputation. For a man first to own, that not only he, but all around him have an indisputable right, the very fame right with himself, to be guided by their own consciences in religion (and let it be remembered, it is thus the matter has all along been Itated) for a man to allow this, I say, and yet make his persuasion a pretence for taking that liberty from them, is a contradiation fo gross and palpable, that it is scarcely conceivable, a person in possession of his onderKanding, can fall into it. Were a person to be supposed capable of this extravagance, every one would instantly difcern that the very principle upon which he pretends to act condemns him. Were it again supposed, that the magißrate was to guard a part of his fubjects only in the rights of conscience, it might be poslible for that favourite part to make it a cover for violating the peace and safety of others with impunity: but let this protection be granted impartially to all of them, and no such consequences can take place. For protection consists in the prevention or suppreffion of injuries, and while this is allowed to be the office and duty of the magistrate, the duty which he is to discharge to all his subjects, he will always have an unquestionable right, as the guardian of the whole community, whenever they are committed, to animadvert upon the authors of them. Nor is maintaining this at all repugnant to the general principles here afferted. For it is not in a religious but political view, ihat luch disorders come under his cognizance. It is not as offences against God, bat as hurtful to the community and breaches of the peace, that he punishes them. Where this is not violated, the right of fol. lowing their own convictions in religion without being molesed for it, continues : the more sacred, important, and valuable it is, and valuable it must be allowed to be to the advancement of truth, the real interest of society, and the cause of pure and undehled religion, the more effe&ually it should be guarded from every encroachment Rey. Nov. 1772.



upon it: and by this general rule, the real genuine principles of Toleration are to be determined.

• Let what has been observed then be applied to this purpose. And we may collect from it, in what light Toleration in general ought to be considered. It is, there is room to think (more room than was till of late apprehended) considered by many as a matter of mere grace or favour, which government has a right to with-hold, grant, abridge, or resume at pleasure. But if the argumeats whick have been advanced are conclusive, it stands on a totally different foundation. It is the acknowledgment and confirmation of a right; not one of those adventitious rights, which are subsequent to the etta. blishment of civil societies, and arise out of the peculiar forms and constitutions of it; but of those higher rights which belong to men as such, and which ought to be preserved under all states and go. vernments whatsoever. It is a branch of proiection, which ought to be as effe&tually universally and impartially secured, as protection in the enjoyment and exercise of any other right which can be named.

The extent of it again, or, to speak more precisely, what is comprehended in the juft idea of it, flows from the same principles with equal evidence. If liberty of conscience be a right effential to human nature, all penalties in cases merely of a religious nature, mult be an infringement of a right, and a DEGREE OF OPPRESSION, though inflicted by a law: nor can the exprellion be juftly thought improper. Every law is oppressive which is unjust; every law is unjuft which fubverts the effential rights of mankind; and if to judge for ourselves in religion, be one of the first and most inviolable of all those which have ever been dignified with this title: it is evident, that every hardship laid upon men for using it is a degree of oppreslion, which the complete and perfect idea of Toleration excludes. And from the same principles it can surely be no difficult matter to determine, who are entitled to this protection. For this does not depend on the supposed truth or error of the sentiments which men may adopt, but upon the common right, which all men have, to -be led in these points by the light of their own minds, and to enjoy all the securities and benefits of fociety, while they fulfil the obligations of it. All, who can give good security to the government under which they live, and to the community to which they belong, for the performance of the duties of good subjects and good citizens, have an undoubted claim to it, and cannot with any just reason be deprived of it. If, indeed, there are any, whose religious principles put it out of their power to give such assurances of this as may be lafely trusted, their case may be thought an excepted one ; though in strictness of speech fuch cases are not so properly exceptions from the rule laid down, as cases, which can never with reason be supposed to be included in it; for to say, that all, who give proper satisfac. tion for their being faithful subjects, have a right to Toleration, can never give those the same right to it, who are incapable of giving such satisfaction. But whatever such cales may at any time appear, or be fuppofed now to exilt, the principle upon which this argument as conducted stands untouched. Ti is not on account of their mistakes in religion, but their incapacity to be deady friends to the flate, that they are laid under restraints. To fix these restraints upon any other footing, would be rendering them utterly indefensible. It is not error, but injury to the state, or the individuals which are under the care of it, which justifies the animadversion of the magiftrate; and all to whom this cannot be juftly imputed, are the objects of his protection : nor ought it to make any difference, in this respect, what are the comparative numbers of those different bodies of men, which compose the focicty. As the magistrate is not to attempt to distress any of them, because they differ from him in judgment; so neither is he at liberty, co sacrifice one part to the clamour and bigotry of the other; but, as the common defender of justice, equity, and peace, impartially to preserve the freedom of them all. And here this part of the subject might be dismissed, were it not that the intervention of establishments of religion, makes, in the opinion of many, a great alteration in the extent of this religious liberty; for which reason there seems to be a necellity of considering the grounds and consequences of them a little distinctly.'

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What our Author says concerning religious establishments appears to be very sensible, pertinent, and liberal; the subject is treated with candour and decency; and we are persuaded that no judicious friend of establishments can be displeased with what is advanced upon it, or think it bears any unfriendly alpect toward the usefulness and honour of such inftitutions. He fhews clearly, that liberty in matters of religion is the right of all men"; that a right to protection from the magistrate is the just consequence of their claim to this liberty; and that no difference of opinion, respecting modes of worship, or, in a word, any thing which does not interfere with the rights of others, can justify his laying any restraints upon it.

He proceeds to apply the principles advanced on the subject of Toleration to our laws, and confiders how far they are favourable to religious liberty; but we must not accompany him any farther, and shall therefore content ourselves with referring our Readers to the Enquiry itself, where they will find several important topics discussed in a very solid and satisfactory manner.

Art. III, The History of Hindoftan, from the Death of Akbar, to be

complete Settlement of the Empire under Aurungzebe. To which are prefixed, 1. A Differtation on the Origin and Nature of Delpotism in Hindoftan, il. An Enquiry into the State of Bengal; with a Plan for restoring that Kingdom to its former Prosperity and Splendor. By Alexander Dow, Esq; Lieutenant-Colonel in the Company's Service. 400. 11. is. Boards. Becket and De Hondt.

1772. ROM the account wbich hath formerly been given of the

two preceding volumes of this History, our Readers cannot be ignorant of its general character. We then endeavoured to do justice to its merit; but at the same time we were sensible that it had several inaccuracies of style, which thewed that the AuB b 2


ther had not been early habituated to regular grammatical compofition. Every defect of this kind is now totally removed, not only with relpect to the present continuation of the work, but with regard to the two former volumes; the second edition of which hath likewise received a variety of other alterations and improvements. The number of proper names, which rendered foine parts of it harsh and uncouth, is very much reduced. Ferihta's account of the ancient Indians, and the invasions of the Mohammedans before the commencement of the Ghiznian empire, is omitted, and an introduction substituted in its place, more fatisfactory, succinct and agreeable. To throw greater light on the affairs of India, there is given, at the conclufion of the different reigns, a summary review of the affairs of the rest of Asia; and in fhort, it appears to us, that nothing has been neglected that could contribute to render the work a complete history of Hindoftan, down to the death of the Emperor Akbar, the third of the Mogul race.

The same solicitude to make the performance deserving of the public notice, and the same attention to composition, are displayed in the volume now before us. The diction is indeed so gratly superior to that of the first edition of the two preceding volumes, in regard to perspicuity, elegance and harmony, that we are perfuaded Mr. Dow must have received no imali degree of aslistance from some ingenious and learned friend. If we may be allowed to mention a conjecture arising from the conformity of style, we should say that this friend seems to be the Author of the Introduction to the History of Great Britain and Ireland.

In the first differtation prefixed to the present work, Mr. Dow points out a variety of circumstances which may serve to explain ihe origin and nature of despotism in Hindoftan. Government, he observes, derives its form from accident, its spirit and genius from the inherent manners of the people. The languor occafioned by the hot climate of India, inclines the native to indolence and ease, and he thinks the evils of despotism less severe than the labour of being free. Tranquillity is the chief object of his defires: his happiness consists in a mere absence of mifery; and oppression must degenerate into a folly which defeats its own ends, before he calls it by the name of injustice. There phlegmatic fentiments the Indian carries into his future state. He thinks it a mode of being in which passion is loft, and every faculty of the foul fufpended, except the consciousness of exift... Ocher motives of paflive obedience join issue with the love of eale; The full, which enervates the body, produces for him, in a manner spontaneously, the various fruiis of the earth. He finds subtence without much toil; be requires little covering



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