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friends would approve of, and he would be ready to accept their recommendations. Thus the earl proceeded in procuring employments for those, who deserved them by their honesty and abilities to execute them; which I confess to have been a singularity not very likely to be imitated. However the gentlemen of this club still continued uneasy that no quicker progress was made in removals, until those who were least violent began to soften a little, or by dividing them the whole affair dropped. During this difficulty we have been assured, that the following discourse was very seasonably published with great success, shewing the difficulties that the earl of Oxford lay under, and his real defire, that all persons in employment should be true loyal churchmen, zealous for her majesty's honour and safety, as well as for the succession in the house of Hanover, if the queen should happen to die without issue. This discourse having been published about the year 1711, and the facts forgotten, would not have been generally understood without some explanation, which we have now endeavoured to give, because it seems a point of history too material to be loft, We owe this piece of intelligence to an intimate of the supposed author.

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many of

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Humbly offered to the





NCE the first institution of your

society, I have always thought you capable of the greatest things. Such a number of persons, members of parliament, true lovers of our constitution in church and state, meeting at certain times, and mixing business and conversation together without the forms and constraint necessary to be observed in publick assemblies, must very much improve each others understanding, correct and fix your judgment, and prepare yourselves against any designs of the opposite party. Upon the opening of this session an incident hath happened, to provide against the consequences whereof will require your utmost


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vigilance and application. All this last summer the enemy was working under ground, and laying their train; they gradually became more frequent and bold in their pamphlets and papers, while those on our side were dropped, as if we had no farther occasion for them. Some time before an opportunity fell into their hands, which they have cultivated ever since; and thereby have endeavoured in some fort to turn those arts against us, which had been so effectually employed to their ruin: a plain demonstration of their superior skill at intrigue; to make a stratagem succeed a second time, and this even against those who first tried it

them. I know not whether this opportunity I have mentioned could have been prevented by any care without straining a very tender point, which those chiefly concerned avoided by all means, because it might seem a counterpart of what they had so much condemned in their predeceffors; although it is certain the two cases were widely different; and if policy had once got the better of good nature, all had been safe, for there was no other danger in view: but the consequences of this were foreseen from the beginning; and those whó kept the watch had early warning of it. It would have been a master-piece of prudence in this case to have made a friend of an enemy. But whether that were possible to be compassed, or whether it were ever attempted, is now too late to enquire. All accommodation was rendered desperate by an unlucky proceeding some months ago at Windsor, which was a declaration of war too frank and generous for that situation of affairs; and I am told, was not approved by a certain great minister. It was obvious to suppose, that in a particular, where the honour and interest of a husband were so closely united with those of a wife, he might be sure of her utmost endeavours for his protection, although she neither loved nor esteemed him. The danger of losing power, favour, profit, and a shelter from domestick tyranny, were strong incitements to stir up a working brain early practised in all the arts of intriguing. Neither is it safe to count upon the weakness of




man's understanding, who is thoroughly possessed



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