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36 CHAP. III.

H I S T O R Y

O F

people at large. Perfons of all ranks accompanied the members to the place of embarkation, pouring forth prayers for their fuccefs, and fhedding tears of fenfibility and affection for a conduct which was very generally confidered as a noble proof of felf-denial, and as fignal an inftance of heroick virtue and chriftian forbearance as any age has exhibited. A momen­ tary calm followed this event :—the parties in arms appeared mutually difpofed to fubmit their differences to the wifdom and justice of the king and the national affembly, and M . Peynier refumed, though with a trembling hand, the reins of government. SUCH was the iffue of the firft attempt to eftablifh a free con­ ftitution in the French part of St. Domingo, on the fyftem of a limited monarchy ; and it affords occafion for fome important r e ­ flections. That the g e n e r a l colonial a f f e m b l y , in their decree of the 28th of May, exceeded the proper boundary of their conftitu­ tional functions, has been frankly admitted. This irregularity, however, might have been corrected without bloodfhed or vio­ lence ; but there is this misfortune attending every deviation from the rule of right, that, in the conflict of contending factions, the exceffes of one party are ever confidered as the fulleft juftification for the outrages of the other. For fome parts of their conduct an apology may be offered. T h e meafure of fecuring to their interefts the crew of the Leopard, and the feizure of the magazine at Leogane, may be vindicated on the plea of felf-defence. It cannot be doubted that M . Peynier had long meditated how beft to restore the ancient defpotick fyftem, and. 4 that,

An historical survey of the french colony in the island of St. Domingo comprehending a short account  

Auteur. Edwards, B. / Ouvrage patrimonial de la Bibliothèque numérique Manioc. Service commun de la documentation, Université des Antilles e...

An historical survey of the french colony in the island of St. Domingo comprehending a short account  

Auteur. Edwards, B. / Ouvrage patrimonial de la Bibliothèque numérique Manioc. Service commun de la documentation, Université des Antilles e...

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