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Charles VIII. of France, when he invaded Italy anno 1498, understood not fuch mock battles; and his men were held to be devils incarnate, who feemed to take delight in fhedding human blood. The Dutch, who for many years have been reduced to mercenary troops, are more indebted to the mutual jealoufy of their neighbours for their independence, than to their own army. In the year 1672, Lewis of France invaded Holland, and in forty days took forty walled towns. That country was faved, not by its army, but by being laid under water. Froft, which is usual at that feafon, would have put an end to the feven United Provinces.

The finall principality of Palmyra is the only inftance known in hiftory, where the military spirit was not enervated by opulence. Pliny defcribes that country as extremely pleafant, and bleffed with plenty of fprings, tho' furrounded with dry and fandy deferts. The commerce of the Indies was at that time carried on by land ; and the city of Palmyra was the centre of that commerce between the Eaft and the Weft. Its territory being very finall, little more than fufficient for villas and plea


fure-grounds, the inhabitants, like those of Hamburgh, had no way to employ their riches for profit but in trade. At the fame time, being fituated between the two mighty empires of Rome and Parthia ; it required great address and the most asfiduous military difcipline, to guard it from being swallowed up by the one or the other. This ticklish fituation preferved the inhabitants from luxury and effeminacy, the ufual concomitants of riches. Their fuperfluous wealth was laid out on magnificient buildings, and on embellishing their country-feats. The fine arts were among them carried to a high degree of perfection. The famous Zenobia, their Queen, being led captive to Rome after being deprived of her dominions, was admired and celebrated for spirit, for learning, and for an exquifite taste in the fine


Thus, by accumulating wealth, a manufacturing and commercial people become a tempting object for conqueft; and by effeminacy become an eafy conqueft. The military fpirit feems to be at a low ebb in Britain: will no phantom appear, even in a dream, to difturb our downy reft?



reft? Formerly, plenty of corn in the temperate regions of Europe and Afia, proved a tempting bait to northern favages who wanted bread: have we no caufe to dread a fimilar fate from fome warlike neighbour, impelled by hunger, or by ambition, to extend his dominions? The difficulty of providing for defence, confistent with industry, has produced a general opinion among political writers, that a nation, to preserve its military fpirit, must give up industry; and to preferve industry, must give up a military fpirit. In the former cafe, we are fecure against any invader in the latter, we lie open to every invader. A military plan that would fecure us against enemies, without hurting our industry and manufactures, would be a rich present to Britain. That fuch a plan is poffible, will appear from what follows; tho' I am far from hoping that it will meet with universal approbation. To prepare the reader, I fhall premife an { account of the different military establishments that exift, and have exifted, in Europe, with the advantages and disadvantages of each. In examining thefe, who VOL. III. knows


knows whether fome hint may not occur of a plan more perfect than any of them.

The most illuftrious military establishment of antiquity is that of the Romans, by which they fubdued almost all the known world. The citizens of Rome were all of them foldiers: they lived upon their pay when in the field; but if they happened not to be fuccessful in plundering, they starved at home. An annual diftribution of corn among them, became neceffary; which in effect corresponded to the halfpay of our officers. It is believed, that fuch a conftitution would not be ad

opted by any modern state. It was a forc'd conftitution; contrary to nature, which gives different difpofitions to men, in order to fupply hands for every necesfary art. It was a hazardous constitution, having no medium between univerfal conqueft and wretched flavery. Had the Gauls who conquered Rome, entertained any view but of plunder, Rome would never have been heard of. It was on the brink of ruin in the war with Hannibal. What would have happened had Hannibal been victorious? It is eafy to judge, by comparing it with Carthage. Car


thage was a commercial ftate, the people all employ'd in arts, manufactures, and navigation. The Carthaginians were fubdued; but they could not be reduced to extremity, while they had accefs to the fea. In fact, they profpered fo much by commerce, even after they were fubdued, as to raise jealousy in their masters; who thought themselves not fecure while a house remained in Carthage. On the other hand, what refource for the inhabitants of Rome, had they been fubdued? They must have perished by hunger; for they could not work. In a word, ancient Rome resembles a gamefter who ventures all upon one decifive throw: if he lofe, he is undone.

I take it for granted, that our feudal system will not have a single vote. It was a fyftem that led to confufion and anarchy, as little fitted for war as for peace. And as for mercenary troops, it is unneceffary to bring them again into the field, after what is faid of them above.

The only remaining forms that merit attention, are a ftanding army, and a militia; which I fhall examine in their order, with the objections that lie against each.

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