|James Harrington (1611–1677)|
Note: This is part of the Leveller Collection of Tracts and Pamphlets.
T.298 [1660.??] James Harrington, A System of Politics, delineated in Short and Easy Aphorisms. Publish’d from the Author’s own Manuscript. (1660-62).
This HTML version comes from the 1771 edtiion edited by John Toland: The Oceana and Other Works of James Harrington, with an Account of His Life by John Toland (London: Becket and Cadell, 1771).
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Chap. I.1. A PEOPLE is either under a state of civil government, or in a state of civil war; or neither under a state of civil government, nor in a state of civil war.
2. Civil government is an art wherby a people rule themselves, or are rul’d by others.
3. The art of civil government in general is twofold, national or provincial.
4. National government is that by which a nation is govern’d independently, or within it self.
5. Provincial government is that by which a province is govern’d dependently, or by som foren prince or state.
6. A people is neither govern’d by themselves, nor by others, but by reason of som external principle therto forcing them.
7. Force is of two kinds, natural and unnatural.
8. Natural force consists in the vigor of principles, and their natural necessary operations.
9. Unnatural force is an external or adventitious opposition to the vigor of principles, and their necessary working, which, from a violation of nature, is call’d violence.
10. National government is an effect of natural force, or vigor.
11. Provincial government is an effect of unnatural force, or violence.
12. The natural force which works or produces national government (of which only I shall speak hereafter) consists in riches.
13. The man that cannot live upon his own, must be a servant; but he that can live upon his own, may be a freeman.
14. Where a people cannot live upon their own, the government is either monarchy, or aristocracy: where a people can live upon their own, the government may be democracy.
Chap. II.15. A man that could live upon his own, may yet, to spare his own, and live upon another, be a servant: but a people that can live upon their own, cannot spare their own, and live upon another; but (except they be no servants, that is, except they com to a democracy) they must waste their own by maintaining their master’s, or by having others to live upon them.
16. Where a people that can live upon their own, imagin that they can be govern’d by others, and not liv’d upon by such governors, it is not the genius of the people, it is the mistake of the people.
17. Where a people that can live upon their own, will not be govern’d by others lest they be liv’d upon by others, it is not the mistake of the people, it is the genius of the people.
18. Of government there are three principles; matter, privation, and form.
1. THAT which is the matter of government, is what we call an estate, be it in lands, goods or mony.
2. If the estate be more in mony than in land, the port or garb of the owner gos more upon his monys than his lands; which with privat men is ordinary, but with nations (except such only as live more upon their trade than upon their territory) is not to be found: for which cause overbalance of riches in mony or goods, as to the sequel of these aphorisms, is altogether omitted.
3. If the estate be more in land than in goods or mony, the garb and port of the owner (whether a man or a nation) gos more if not altogether upon his land.
4. If a man has som estate, he may have som servants or a family, and consequently som government, or somthing to govern: if he has no estate, he can have no government.
5. Where the eldest of many brothers has all, or so much that the rest for their livelihood stand in need of him, that brother is as it were prince in that family.
6. Where of many brothers the eldest has but an equal share, or not so inequal as to make the rest to stand in need of him for their livelihood, that family is as it were a commonwealth.
7. Distribution of shares in land, as to the three grand interests, the king, the nobility, and the people, must be equal or inequal.
8. Equal distribution of land, as if one man or a few men have one half of the territory, and the people have the other half, causes privation of government, and a state of civil war: for the lord or lords on the one side being able to assert their pretension or right to rule, and the people on the other their pretension or right to liberty, that nation can never com under any form of government till that question be decided; and, property being not by any law to be violated or mov’d, any such question cannot be decided but by the sword only.
9. Inequal distribution of shares in land, as to the three grand interests, or the whole land in any one of these, is that which causes one of these three to be the predominant interest.
Chap. III.10. All government is interest, and the predominant interest gives the matter or foundation of the government.
11. If one man has the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, the interest of one man is the predominant interest, and causes absolute monarchy.
12. If a few men have the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, the interest of the few or of the nobility is the predominant interest; and, were there any such thing in nature, would cause a pure aristocracy.
13. It being so that pure aristocracy, or the nobility having the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, without a moderator or prince to balance them, is a state of war, in which every one, as he grows eminent or potent, aspires to monarchy; and that not any nobility can have peace, or can reign without having such a moderator or prince, as on the one side they may balance or hold in from being absolute, and on the other side may balance or hold them and their factions from flying out into arms: it follows, that if a few men have the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, the interest of the nobility being the predominant interest, must of necessity produce regulated monarchy.
14. If the many, or the people, have the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, the interest of the many or of the people is the predominant interest, and causes democracy.
15. A people neither under absolute or under regulated monarchy, nor yet under democracy, are under a privation of government.
1. WHERE a people are not in a state of civil government, but in a state of civil war; or where a people are neither under a state of civil government, nor under a state of civil war, there the people are under privation of government.
2. Where one man, not having the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, yet assumes to himself the whole power; there the people are under privation of government, and this privation is call’d tyranny.
3. Where a few men, not having the whole, or about two parts in three of the whole land or territory, yet assume to themselves the whole power; there the people are under privation of government, and this privation is call’d oligarchy.
4. Where the many, or the people, not having the whole, or two parts in three of the whole land or territory, yet assume to themselves the whole power; there the people are under privation of government, and this privation is call’d anarchy.
5. Where the tyranny, the oligarchy, or the anarchy, not having in the land or territory such a full share as may amount to the truth of government, have nevertheless such a share in it as may maintain an army; there the people are under privation of government, and this privation is a state of civil war.
Chap. IV.6. Where the tyranny, the oligarchy, or the anarchy, have not any such share in the land or territory as may maintain an army, there the people are in privation of government; which privation is neither a state of civil government, nor a state of civil war.
7. Where the people are neither in a state of civil government, nor in a state of civil war, there the tyranny, the oligarchy, or the anarchy, cannot stand by any force of nature, because it is void of any natural foundation; nor by any force of arms, because it is not able to maintain an army; and so must fall away of it self thro the want of a foundation, or be blown up by som tumult: and in this kind of privation the matter or foundation of a good orderly government is ready and in being, and there wants nothing to the perfection of the same, but proper superstructures or form.
1. THAT which gives the being, the action, and the denomination to a creature or thing, is the form of that creature or thing.
2. There is in form somthing that is not elementary but divine.
3. The contemplation of form is astonishing to man, and has a kind of trouble or impulse accompanying it, that exalts his soul to God.
4. As the form of a man is the image of God, so the form of a government is the image of man.
5. Man is both a sensual and a philosophical creature.
6. Sensuality in a man is when he is led only as are the beasts, that is, no otherwise than by appetit.
7. Philosophy is the knowledge of divine and human things.
8. To preserve and defend himself against violence, is natural to man as he is a sensual creature.
9. To have an impulse, or to be rais’d upon contemplation of natural things to the adoration or worship of God, is natural to man as he is a philosophical creature.
10. Formation of government is the creation of a political creature after the image of a philosophical creature; or it is an infusion of the soul or facultys of a man into the body of a multitude.
11. The more the soul or facultys of a man (in the manner of their being infus’d into the body of a multitude) are refin’d or made incapable of passion, the more perfect is the form of government.
12. Not the refin’d spirit of a man, or of som men, is a good form of government; but a good form of government is the refin’d spirit of a nation.
13. The spirit of a nation (whether refin’d or not refin’d) can neither be wholly saint nor Atheist: not saint because the far greater part of the people is never able in matters of religion to be their own leaders; nor Atheists, because religion is every whit as indelible a character in man’s nature as reason.
14. Language is not a more natural intercourse between the soul of one man and another, than religion is between God and the soul of a man.
15. As not this language, nor that language, but som language; so not this religion, nor that religion, yet som religion is natural to every nation.
16. The soul of government, as the true and perfect image of the soul of man, is every whit as necessarily religious as rational.
17. The body of a government, as consisting of the sensual part of man, is every whit as preservative and defensive of it self as sensual creatures are of themselves.
18. The body of a man, not actuated or led by the soul, is a dead thing out of pain and misery; but the body of a people, not actuated or led by the soul of government, is a living thing in pain and misery.
19. The body of a people, not led by the reason of the government, is not a people, but a herd: not led by the religion of the government, is at an inquiet and an uncomfortable loss in it self; not disciplin’d by the conduct of the government, is not an army for defence of it self, but a rout; not directed by the laws of the government, has not any rule of right; and without recourse to the justice or judicatorys of the government, has no remedy of wrongs.
20. In contemplation of, and in conformity to the soul of man, as also for supply of those his necessitys which are not otherwise supply’d, or to be supply’d by nature, form of government consists necessarily of these five parts: the civil, which is the reason of the people; the religious, which is the comfort of the people; the military, which is the captain of the people; the laws, which are the rights of the people; and the judicatorys, which are the avengers of their wrongs.
21. The parts of form in government are as the offices in a house; and the orders of a form of government are as the orders of a house or family.
22. Good orders make evil men good, and bad orders make good men evil.
23. Oligarchists (to the end they may keep all others out of the government) pretending themselves to be saints, do also pretend, that they in whom lust reigns, are not fit for reign or for government. But libido dominandi, the lust of government, is the greatest lust, which also reigns most in those that have least right, as in oligarchists: for many a king and many a people have and had unquestionable right, but an oligarchist never; whence from their own argument, the lust of government reigning most in oligarchists, it undeniably follows that oligarchists of all men are least fit for government.
24. As in houses not differing in the kinds of their offices, the orders of the familys differ much; so the difference of form in different governments consists not in the kinds or number of the parts, which in every one is alike, but in the different ways of ordering those parts. And as the different orders of a house arise for the most part from the quantity and quality of the estate by which it is defray’d or maintain’d, according as it is in one or more of the family as proprietors, so it is also in a government.
25. The orders of the form, which are the manners of the mind of the government, follow the temperament of the body, or the distribution of the lands or territorys, and the interests thence arising.
26. The interest of arbitrary monarchy is the absoluteness of the monarch; the interest of regulated monarchy is the greatness of the nobility; the interest of democracy is the felicity of the people: for in democracy the government is for the use of the people, and in monarchy the people are for the use of the government, that is, of one lord or more.
Chap. V.27. The use of a horse without his provender, or of the people without som regard had to the necessitys of human nature, can be none at all: nor are those necessitys of nature in any form whatsoever to be otherwise provided for than by those five parts already mention’d; for which cause every government consists of five parts: the civil, the religious, the military, the laws, and the judicatorys.
1. THOSE naturalists that have best written of generation, do observe that all things procede from an eg, and that there is in every eg a punctum saliens, or a part first mov’d, as the purple speck observ’d in those of hens; from the working wherof the other organs or fit members are delineated, distinguish’d, and wrought into one organical body.
2. A nation without government, or fallen into privation of form, is like an eg unhatch’d; and the punctum saliens, or first mover from the corruption of the former to the generation of the succeding form, is either a sole legislator or a council.
3. A sole legislator, proceding according to art, or knowlege, produces government in the whole piece at once and in perfection. But a council (proceding not according to art, or what in a new case is necessary or fit for them, but according to that which they call the genius of the people still hankering after the things they have bin us’d to, or their old customs, how plain soever it be made in reason that they can no longer fit them) make patching work, and are ages about that which is very seldom or never brought by them to any perfection; but commonly coms by the way to ruin, leaving the noblest attempts under reproach, and the authors of them expos’d to the greatest miserys while they live, if not their memorys when they are dead and gone to the greatest infamy.
4. If the punctum saliens, or first mover in generation of the form be a sole legislator, his proceding is not only according to nature, but according to art also, and begins with the delineation of distinct orders or members.
5. Delineation of distinct organs or members (as to the form of government) is a division of the territory into fit precincts once stated for all, and a formation of them to their proper offices and functions, according to the nature or truth of the form to be introduc’d.
6. Precincts in absolute monarchy are commonly call’d provinces; and as to the delineation or stating of them, they may be equal or inequal. Precincts in regulated monarchy, where the lords or nobility as to their titles or estates ought not to be equal, but to differ as one star differs from another in glory, are commonly call’d countys, and ought to be inequal. Precincts in democracy, where without equality in the electors there will hardly be any equality in the elected; or where without equality in the precincts, it is almost, if not altogether impossible there should be equality in the commonwealth, are properly call’d tribes, and ought by all means to be equal.
7. Equality or parity has bin represented an odious thing, and made to imply the levelling of mens estates; but if a nobility, how inequal soever in their estates or titles, yet to com to the truth of aristocracy, must as to their votes or participation in the government be pares regni, that is to say peers, or in parity among themselves: as well likewise the people, to attain to the truth of democracy, may be peers, or in parity among themselves, and yet not as to their estates be oblig’d to levelling.
8. Industry of all things is the most accumulative, and accumulation of all things hates levelling: the revenue therfore of the people being the revenue of industry, tho som nobility (as that of Israel, or that of Lacedemon) may be found to have bin levellers, yet not any people in the world.
9. Precincts being stated, are in the next place to be form’d to their proper offices and functions, according to the truth of the form to be introduc’d; which in general is to form them as it were into distinct governments, and to indow them with distinct governors.
10. Governments or governors are either supreme or subordinat. For absolute monarchy to admit in its precincts any government or governors that are not subordinat but supreme, were a plain contradiction. But that regulated monarchy, and that democracy may do it, is seen in the princes of Germany, and in the cantons of Switzerland: nevertheless these being governments that have deriv’d this not from the wisdom of any legislator, but from accident, and an ill disposition of the matter, wherby they are not only incapable of greatness, but even of any perfect state of health, they com not under the consideration of art, from which they derive not; but of chance, to which we leave them. And, to speak according to art, we pronounce that, as well in democracy and in regulated as in absolute monarchy, governors and governments in the several divisions ought not to be soveraintys, but subordinat to one common soverain.
11. Subordinat governors are at will, or for life, or upon rotation or changes.
12. In absolute monarchy the governors of provinces must either be at will, or upon rotation, or else the monarch cannot be absolute. In regulated monarchy the governors of the countys may be for life or hereditary, as in counts or lords; or for som certain term and upon rotation, as in viscounts or sherifs. In democracy the people are servants to their governors for life, and so cannot be free; or the governors of the tribes must be upon rotation and for som certain term, excluding the party that have born the magistracy for that term from being elected into the like again, till an equal interval or vacation be expir’d.
13. The term in which a man may administer government to the good of it, and not attemt upon it to the harm of it, is the fittest term of bearing magistracy; and three years in a magistracy describ’d by the law under which a man has liv’d, and which he has known by the carriage or practice of it in others, is a term in which he cannot attempt upon his government for the hurt of it, but may administer it for the good of it, tho such a magistracy or government should consist of divers functions.
14. Governors in subordinat precincts have commonly three functions; the one civil, the other judicial, and the third military.
15. In absolute monarchy the government of a province consists of one beglerbeg, or governor for three years, with his council or divan for civil matters, and his guard of janizarys and spahys, that is, of horse and foot, with power to levy and command the timariots or military farmers.
16. In regulated monarchy the government of a county consists of one count or lord for life, or of one viscount or sherif for som limited term, with power in certain civil and judicial matters, and to levy and command the posse comitatus.
17. In democracy the government of a tribe consists of one council or court, in one third part elected annually by the people of that tribe for the civil; for the judicial, and for the military government of the same; as also to preside at the election of deputys in that tribe towards the annual supply in one third part of the common and soverain assemblys of the whole commonwealth, that is to say, of the senat and of the popular assembly; in which two these tribes, thus delineated and distinguish’d into proper organs or fit members to be actuated by those soverain assemblys, are wrought up again by connexion into one intire and organical body.
18. A parlament of physicians would never have found out the circulation of the blood, nor could a parlament of poets have written Virgil’s Æneis; of this kind therfore in the formation of government is the proceding of a sole legislator. But if the people without a legislator set upon such work by a certain instinct that is in them, they never go further than to chuse a council; not considering that the formation of government is as well a work of invention as of judgment; and that a council, tho in matters laid before them they may excel in judgment, yet invention is as contrary to the nature of a council as it is to musicians in consort, who can play and judg of any ayr that is laid before them, tho to invent a part of music they can never well agree.
19. In councils there are three ways of result, and every way of result makes a different form. A council with the result in the prince makes absolute monarchy. A council with the result in the nobility, or where without the nobility there can be no result, makes aristocracy, or regulated monarchy. A council with the result in the people makes democracy. There is a fourth kind of result or council which amounts not to any form, but to privation of government; that is, a council not consisting of a nobility, and yet with the result in itself, which is rank oligarchy: so the people, seldom or never going any further than to elect a council without any result but itself, instead of democracy introduce oligarchy.
20. The ultimat result in every form is the soverain power. If the ultimat result be wholly and only in the monarch, that monarchy is absolute. If the ultimat result be not wholly and only in the monarch, that monarchy is regulated. If the result be wholly and only in the people, the people are in liberty, or the form of the government is democracy.
21. It may happen that a monarchy founded upon aristocracy, and so as to the foundation regulated, may yet com by certain expedients or intrusions (as at this day in France and in Spain) as to the administration of it to appear or be call’d absolute; of which I shall treat more at large when I com to speak of reason of state, or of administration.
22. The ultimat result in the whole body of the people, if the commonwealth be of any considerable extent, is altogether impracticable; and if the ultimat result be but in a part of the people, the rest are not in liberty, nor is the government democracy.
23. As a whole army cannot charge at one and the same time, yet is so order’d that every one in his turn coms up to give the charge of the whole army; so tho the whole people cannot give the result at one and the same, yet may they be so order’d that every one in his turn may com up to give the result of the whole people.
24. A popular assembly, rightly order’d, brings up every one in his turn to give the result of the whole people.
25. If the popular assembly consists of one thousand or more, annually changeable in one third part by new elections made in the tribes by the people, it is rightly order’d; that is to say, so constituted that such an assembly can have no other interest wherupon to give the result, than that only which is the interest of the whole people.
26. But in vain is result where there is no matter to resolve upon; and where maturity of debate has not preceded, there is not yet matter to resolve upon.
27. Debate to be mature cannot be manag’d by a multitude; and result to be popular cannot be given by a few.
28. If a council capable of debate has also the result, it is oligarchy. If an assembly capable of the result has debate also, it is anarchy. Debate in a council not capable of result, and result in an assembly not capable of debate, is democracy.
29. It is not more natural to a people in their own affairs to be their own chusers, than upon that occasion to be provided of their learned counsil; in so much that the saying of Pacuvius, That either a people is govern’d by a king or counsil’d by a senat, is universally approv’d.
30. Where the senat has no distinct interest, there the people are counsillable, and venture not upon debate: where the senat has any distinct interest, there the people are not counsillable, but fall into debate among themselves, and so into confusion.
31. Of senats there are three kinds: first, A senat eligible out of the nobility only, as that of Rome, which will not be contented to be merely the council of the people, but will be contending that they are lords of the people, never quitting their pretensions till they have ruin’d the commonwealth. Secondly, A senat elected for life, as that of Sparta, which will be a species of nobility, and will have a kind of Spartan king, and a senat upon rotation; which being rightly constituted, is quiet, and never pretends more than to be the learned council of the people.
32. Thirdly, Three hundred senators, for example, changeable in one third part of them annually by new elections in the tribes, and constituted a senat to debate upon all civil matters, to promulgat to the whole nation what they have debated, this promulgation to be made som such convenient time before the matters by them debated are to be propos’d, that they may be commonly known and well understood, and then to propose the same to the result of the popular assembly, which only is to be the test of every public act, is a senat rightly order’d.
FORM of government (as to the civil part) being thus completed, is sum’d up in the three following aphorisms.
33. Absolute monarchy (for the civil part of the form) consists of distinct provinces under distinct governors, equally subordinat to a grand signor or sole lord, with his council or divan debating and proposing, and the result wholly and only in himself.
Chap. VI.34. Regulated monarchy (for the civil part of the form) consists of distinct principalitys or countys under distinct lords or governors, which if rightly constituted are equally subordinat to the king and his peerage, or to the king and his estates assembl’d in parliament, without whose consent the king can do nothing.
35. Democracy (for the civil part of the form) if rightly constituted, consists of distinct tribes under the government of distinct magistrats, courts, or councils, regularly changeable in one third part upon annual elections, and subordinat to a senat consisting of not above three hundred senators, and to a popular assembly consisting of not under a thousand deputys; each of these also regularly changeable in one third part upon annual elections in the tribes, the senat having the debate, and the popular assembly the result of the whole commonwealth.
1. FORM for the religious part either admits of liberty of conscience in the whole or in part; or dos not admit of liberty of conscience at all.
2. Liberty of conscience intire, or in the whole, is where a man according to the dictats of his own conscience may have the free exercise of his religion, without impediment to his preferment or imployment in the state.
3. Liberty of conscience in part is, where a man according to the dictats of his conscience may have the free exercise of his religion; but if it be not the national religion, he is therby incapable of preferment or imployment in the state.
4. Where the form admits not of the free exercise of any other religion except that only which is national, there is no liberty of conscience.
5. Men who have the means to assert liberty of conscience, have the means to assert civil liberty; and will do it if they are opprest in their consciences.
6. Men participating in property, or in imployment civil or military, have the means to assert liberty of conscience.
7. Absolute monarchy, being sole proprietor, may admit of liberty of conscience to such as are not capable of civil or military imployment, and yet not admit of the means to assert civil liberty; as the Greec Christians under the Turk, who, tho they injoy liberty of conscience, cannot assert civil liberty, because they have neither property nor any civil or military imployments.
8. Regulated monarchy, being not sole proprietor, may not admit naturally of liberty of conscience, lest it admits of the means to assert civil liberty, as was lately seen in England by pulling down the bishops, who, for the most part, are one half of the foundation of regulated monarchy.
9. Democracy being nothing but intire liberty; and liberty of conscience without civil liberty, or civil liberty without liberty of conscience being but liberty by halves, must admit of liberty of conscience both as to the perfection of its present being, and as to its future security: as to the perfection of its present being, for the reasons already shewn, or that she do not injoy liberty by halves; and for future security, because this excludes absolute monarchy, which cannot stand with liberty of conscience in the whole, and regulated monarchy, which cannot stand safely with it in any part.
10. If it be said that in France there is liberty of conscience in part, it is also plain that while the hierarchy is standing this liberty is falling, and that if ever it coms to pull down the hierarchy, it pulls down that monarchy also: wherfore the monarchy or hierarchy will be beforehand with it, if they see their true interest.
11. The ultimat result in monarchy being that of one man, or of a few men, the national religion in monarchy may happen not to be the religion of the major part of the people; but the result in democracy being in the major part of the people, it cannot happen but that the national religion must be that of the major part of the people.
12. The major part of the people, being in matters of religion inabled to be their own leaders, will in such cases therfore have a public leading; or, being debar’d of their will in that particular, are debar’d of their liberty of conscience.
13. Where the major part of the people is debar’d of their liberty by the minor, there is neither liberty of conscience nor democracy, but spiritual or civil oligarchy.
14. Where the major part is not debar’d of their liberty of conscience by the minor, there is a national religion.
15. National religion is either coercive, or not coercive.
16. Religion is not naturally subservient to any corrupt or worldly interest, for which cause to bring it into subjection to interest it must be coercive.
17. Where religion is coercive, or in subjection to interest, there it is not, or will not long continue to be the true religion.
18. Where religion is not coercive, nor under subjection to any interest, there it either is (or has no obstruction why it may not com to be) the true religion.
19. Absolute monarchy pretends to infallibility in matters of religion, imploys not any that is not of its own faith, and punishes its apostats by death without mercy.
20. Regulated monarchy coms not much short of the same pretence; but consisting of proprietors, and such as if they dissent have oftentimes the means to defend themselves, it dos not therfore always attain to the exercise of the like power.
21. Democracy pretends not to infallibility, but is in matters of religion no more than a seeker, not taking away from its people their liberty of conscience, but educating them, or so many of them as shall like of it, in such a manner or knowledge in divine things as may render them best able to make use of their liberty of conscience, which it performs by the national religion.
22. National religion, to be such, must have a national ministry or clergy.
23. The clergy is either a landed or a stipendiated clergy.
24. A landed clergy attaining to one third of the territory, is aristocracy; and therfore equally incompatible with absolute monarchy, and with democracy: but to regulated monarchy for the most part is such a supporter, as in that case it may be truly enough said, that NO BISHOP, NO KING.
25. The soverainty of the prince in absolute monarchy, and of the people in democracy, admitting not of any counterpoise, in each of these the clergy ought not to be landed; the laborer nevertheless being worthy of his hire, they ought to be stipendiated.
26. A clergy well landed is to regulated monarchy a very great glory; and a clergy not well stipendiated is to absolute monarchy or to democracy as great an infamy.
Chap. VII.27. A clergy, whether landed or stipendiated, is either hierarchical or popular.
28. A hierarchical clergy is a monarchical ordination; a popular clergy receives ordination from election by the people.
FORM of Government (as to the religious part) being thus completed, is sum’d up in the three following Aphorisms:
29. Absolute monarchy (for the religious part of the form) consists of a hierarchical clergy, and of an alcoran (or som book receiv’d in the nature of Scripture) interpretable by the prince only and his clergy, willingly permitting to them that are not capable of imployments a liberty of conscience.
30. Regulated monarchy (for the religious part of the form) consists of an aristocratical hierarchy, of the liturgy, and of the holy Scriptures (or som such book receiv’d for a rule of faith) interpretable only by the clergy, not admitting liberty of conscience, except thro mere necessity.
31. Democracy (for the religious part of the form) consists of a popular clergy, of the Scriptures (or som other book acknowleg’d divine) with a directory for the national religion, and a council for the equal maintenance both of the national religion, and of the liberty of conscience.
1. A MAN may perish by the sword; yet no man draws the sword to perish, but to live by it.
2. So many ways as there are of living by the sword, so many ways there are of a militia.
3. If a prince be lord of the whole, or of two parts in three of the whole territory, and divides it into military farms at will and without rent, upon condition of service at their own charge in arms whenever he commands them, it is the sword of an absolute monarchy.
4. If the nobility, being lords of the whole or of two parts in three of the whole territory, let their lands by good pennyworths to tenants at will, or by their leases bound at their commands by whom they live to serve in arms upon pay, it is the sword of a regulated monarchy.
5. In countrys that have no infantry, or militia of free commoners, as in France and Poland, the nobility themselves are a vast body of horse, and the sword of that monarchy.
6. If a people, where there neither is lord nor lords of the whole, nor of two parts in three of the whole territory, for the common defence of their liberty and of their livelihood, take their turns upon the guard or in arms, it is the sword of democracy.
7. There is a fourth kind of militia, or of men living more immediatly by the sword, which are soldiers of fortune, or a mercenary army.
Chap. VIII.8. Absolute monarchy must be very well provided with court guards, or a mercenary army; otherwise its military farmers having no bar from becoming proprietors, the monarchy it self has no bar from changing into democracy.
FORM of government (as to the military part) being thus completed, is sum’d up in the three following aphorisms:
9. In a regulated monarchy where there is an infantry, there needs not any mercenary army; and there the people live tolerably well.
10. In a regulated monarchy where there is no infantry, but the nobility themselves are a vast body of horse, there must also be a mercenary infantry, and there the people are peasants or slaves.
11. There is no such thing in nature as any monarchy (whether absolute or regulated) subsisting merely by a mercenary army, and without an infantry or cavalry planted upon the lands of the monarch, or of his whole nobility.
1. IF justice be not the interest of a government, the interest of that government will be its justice.
2. Let equity or justice be what it will, yet if a man be to judg or resolve in his own case, he resolves upon his own interest.
3. Every government, being not obnoxious to any superior, resolves in her own case.
4. The ultimat result in every government is the law in that government.
5. In absolute monarchy, the ultimat result is in the monarch.
6. In aristocracy, or regulated monarchy, the ultimat result is in the lords or peers, or not without them.
7. In democracy the ultimat result is in the people.
8. Law in absolute monarchy holds such a disproportion to natural equity, as the interest of one man to the interest of all mankind.
9. Law in aristocracy holds such a disproportion to natural equity, as the interest of a few men to the interest of all mankind.
10. Law in democracy holds such a disproportion to natural equity, as the interest of a nation to the interest of all mankind.
11. One government has much nearer approaches to natural equity than another; but in case natural equity and self-preservation com in competition, so natural is self-preservation to every creature, that in that case no one government has any more regard to natural equity than another.
12. A man may devote himself to death or destruction to save a ation, but no nation will devote it self to death or destruction to save mankind.
13. MACHIAVEL is decry’d for saying, that no consideration is to be had of what is just or injust, of what is merciful or cruel, of what is honorable or ignominious in case it be to save a state, or to preserve liberty; which as to the manner of expression Chap. IX. is crudely spoken. But to imagin that a nation will devote it self to death or destruction any more upon faith given or an ingagement therto tending, than if there had bin no such ingagement made or faith given, were not piety but folly.
14. Whersoever the power of making law is, there only is the power of interpreting the law so made.
15. God who has given his law to the soul of that man who shall voluntarily receive it, is the only interpreter of his law to that soul; such at least is the judgment of democracy. With absolute monarchy, and with aristocracy, it is an innat maxim, That the people are to be deceiv’d in two things, their RELIGION and their LAW; or that the church or themselves are interpreters of all Scripture, as the priests were antiently of the Sibyls books.
FORM of government (as to the legal part) being thus completed, is sum’d up in the three following aphorisms:
16. Absolute monarchy (for the legal part of the form) consists of such laws as it pretends God has deliver’d or given the king and priests power to interpret; or it consists of such laws as the monarch shall or has chosen.
17. Aristocracy (for the legal part of the form) consists of such laws as the nobility shall chuse or have chosen; or of such as the people shall chuse or have chosen, provided they be agreed to by their lords, or by the king and their lords.
18. Democracy (for the legal part of the form) consists of such laws as the people, with the advice of their council, or of the senat, shall chuse or have chosen.
1. MULTIPLICITY of laws, being a multiplicity of snares for the people, causes corruption of government.
2. Paucity of laws requires arbitrary power in courts, or judicatorys.
3. Arbitrary power (in reference to laws) is of three kinds. (1) In making, altering, abrogating, or interpreting of laws, which belong to the soverain power. (2) In applying laws to cases which are never any one like another. (3) In reconciling the laws among themselves.
4. There is no difficulty at all in judging of any case whatsoever according to natural equity.
5. Arbitrary power makes any man a competent judg for his knowledge; but leaving him to his own interest, which oftentimes is contrary to justice, makes him also an incompetent judg, in regard that he may be partial.
6. A partiality is the cause why laws pretend to abhor arbitrary power; nevertheless, seeing that not one case is altogether like another, there must in every judicatory be som arbitrary power.
7. Paucity of laws causes arbitrary power in applying them; and multiplicity of laws causes arbitrary power in reconciling and applying them too.
8. Arbitrary power where it can do no wrong, dos the greatest right; because no law can ever be so fram’d, but that without arbitrary power it may do wrong.
9. Arbitrary power, going upon the interest of one or of a few, makes not a just judicatory.
10. Arbitrary power, going upon the interest of the whole people, makes a just judicatory.
11. All judicatorys and laws, which have bin made by arbitrary power, allow of the interpretation of arbitrary power, and acknowlege an appeal from themselves to it.
12. That law which leaves the least arbitrary power to the judg or judicatory, is the most perfect law.
13. Laws that are the fewest, plainest, and briefest, leave the least arbitrary power to the judg or judicatory; and being a light to the people, make the most incorrupt government.
14. Laws that are perplext, intricat, tedious, and voluminous, leave the greatest arbitrary power to the judg or judicatory; and raining snares on the people, make the most corrupt government.
15. Seeing no law can be so perfect as not to leave arbitrary power to the judicatory, that is the best constitution of a judicatory where arbitrary power can do the least hurt, and the worst constitution of a judicatory is where arbitrary power can do the most ill.
16. Arbitrary power in one judg dos the most, in a few judges dos less, and in a multitude of judges dos the least hurt.
17. The ultimat appeal from all inferior judicatorys is to som soverain judg or judicatory.
18. The ultimat result in every government (as in absolute monarchy, the monarch; in aristocracy, or aristocratical monarchy, the peers; in democracy, the popular assembly) is a soverain judg or judicatory that is arbitrary.
19. Arbitrary power in judicatorys is not such as makes no use of the law, but such by which there is a right use to be made of the laws.
20. That judicatory where the judg or judges are not obnoxious to partiality or privat interest, cannot make a wrong use of power.
21. That judicatory that cannot make a wrong use of power, must make a right use of law.
22. Every judicatory consists of a judg or som judges without a jury, or of a jury on the bench without any other judg or judges, or of a judg or judges on the bench with a jury at the bar.
FORM of government (as to the judicial part) being thus completed, is sum’d up in the three following aphorisms.
23. Absolute monarchy (for the judicial part of the form) admits not of any jury, but is of som such kind as a cadee or judg in a city, or as we say in a hundred, with an appeal to a cadaliskar or a judg in a province, from whom also there lys an appeal to the muphti, who is at the devotion of the grand signior or of the monarch.
Chap. X.24. Aristocracy or aristocratrical monarchy (for the judicial part of the form) may admit of a jury, so it be at the bar only, and consists of som such kind as delegats or ordinary judges, with an appeal to a house of peers; or som such court, as the parlament at Paris, which was at the institution in the reign of Hugh Capet, a parlament of soverain princes.
25. Democracy (for the judicial part of the form) is of som such kind as a jury on the bench in every tribe, consisting of thirty persons or more annually eligible in one third part by the people of that tribe, with an appeal from thence to a judicatory residing in the capital city of the like constitution, annually eligible in one third part out of the senat or the popular assembly, or out of both; from which also there lys an appeal to the people, that is to the popular assembly.
1. AS the matter of a ship or of a house is one thing, the form of a ship or of a house is another thing, and the administration or reason of a ship or of the house is a third thing; so the matter of a government or of a state is one thing, the form of a government or of a state is another, and the administration of a government (which is what’s properly and truly call’d reason of state) is a third thing.
2. There are those who can play, and yet cannot pack the cards, and there are who can pack the cards, and yet cannot play.
3. Administration of government, or reason of state, to such as propose to themselves to play upon the square, is one thing; and to such as propose to themselves to pack the cards, is another.
4. REASON of state is that in a kingdom or a commonwealth, which in a family is call’d THE MAIN CHANCE.
5. The master of a family that either keeps himself up to his antient bounds, or increases his stock, looks very well to the main chance, at least if his play be upon the square, that is, upon his own abilitys, or good fortune, or the laws; but if it were not upon the square, yet an estate however gotten, is not for that a less estate in it self, nor less descending by the law to his successors.
6. If a people thro their own industry, or the prodigality of their lords, com to acquire liberty; if a few by their industry, or thro the folly or slothfulness of the people, com to eat them out, and make themselves lords; if one lord by his power or his virtue, or thro their necessity, their wisdom, or their folly, can overtop the rest of these lords, and make himself king, all this was fair play and upon the square.
7. REASON of state, if we speak of it as fair play, is foren or domestic.
8. REASON of state, which is foren, consists in balancing foren princes and states in such a manner, as you may gain upon them, or at least that they may not gain upon you.
9. REASON of state, which is domestic, is the administration of a government (being not usurp’d) according to the foundation and superstructures of the same if they be good, or so as not being good that they may be mended, or so as being good or bad they may be alter’d; or, the government being usurp’d, the reason of state then is the way and means wherby such usurpation may be made good or maintain’d.
10. REASON of state, in a democracy which is rightly founded and rightly order’d, is a thing of great facility, whether in a foren or in a domestic relation. In a foren, because one good democracy, weighing two or three of the greatest princes, will easily give the balance abroad at its pleasure; in a domestic, because it consists not of any more than giving such a stop in accumulation that the state coms not to be monarchical: which one reason of state being made good, all the rest gos well; and which one reason of state being neglected, all the rest coms in time to infallible ruin.
11. Reason of state in a democracy, which is not right in its foundations, may flourish abroad, and be one: but at home will languish or be two reasons of state, that is, the reason of the state or orders of the nobility, which is to lord it over the people; and the reason of the popular state or order, which is to bring the commonwealth to equality: which two reasons of state, being irreconcilable, will exercise themselves against one another, first by disputes, then by plots, till it coms at last to open violence, and so to the utter ruin of the commonwealth, as it happen’d in Rome.
12. Reason of state in an absolute monarchy (whether foren or domestic) is but threefold; as first to keep its military farmers or timariots to the first institution; next to cut him that grows any thing above his due stature, or lifts up his head above the rest, by so much the shorter; and last of all, to keep its arms in exercise.
13. In aristocratical monarchy reason of state (as to the whole) is but one thing, that is, to preserve the counterpoise of the king and the two, or the three, or the four estates: for in som countrys, as in Poland, there are but two estates, the clergy and the nobility; in others, as in Sweden, there are four, the nobility, the gentry, the clergy, and the commons: in most others there are but three, the lords spiritual, the lords temporal, and the commons.
14. In aristocratical monarchy reason of state (as to the parts) is a multifarious thing, every state having its peculiar reason of state, and the king also his reason of state: with the king it is to balance the nobility, that he may hold them under; reason of state with the nobility is to balance the king, left he should grow absolute; reason of state both with the king and the nobility is to keep down the people; and reason of state with the people is to drive at their liberty.
15. In forms that are pure, or in governments that have no more than an absolute prince or one state, as absolute monarchy and equal or pure democracy, there is but one reason of state, and that is to preserve the form intire. In forms that are mix’d (as in an inequal commonwealth where there are two estates, and in aristocratical monarchy where there is a king and two if not three estates) there are so many reasons of state to break the form, that there has not bin any inequal commonwealth which either the people have not brought to democracy, or the nobility to monarchy. And scarce was there any aristocratical monarchy, where (to omit the wars of the nobility with their king, or among themselves) the people have not driven out their king, or where the king has not brought the people into slavery. Aristocratical monarchy is the true theatre of expedient-mongers and state-emperics, or the deep waters wherin that Leviathan the minister of state takes his pastime.
16. The complaint that the wisdom of all these latter times in princes affairs consists rather in fine deliverys and shiftings of dangers or mischiefs when they are near, than in solid and grounded courses to keep them off, is a complaint in the streets of aristocratical monarchy: and not to be remedy’d, because the nobility being not broken, the king is in danger, and the nobility being broken, the monarchy is ruin’d.
17. An absurdity in the form of the government (as that in a monarchy there may be two monarchs) shoots out into a mischief in the administration, or som wickedness in the reason of state, as in Romulus’s killing of Remus, and the monstrous assassinations of the Roman emperors.
18. Usurpation of government is a surfeit that converts the best arts into the worst: Nemo unquam imperium flagitio acquisitum bonis artibus exercuit.
19. As in the privation of virtue, and in beggery, men are sharks or robbers, and the reason of their way of living is quite contrary to those of thrist; so in the privation of government, as in anarchy, oligarchy, or tyranny, that which is reason of state with them is directly opposit to that which is truly so: whence are all those black maxims set down by som politicians, particularly Machiavel in his prince, and which are condemn’d to the fire even by them who, if they liv’d otherwise, might blow their fingers.
20. Where the government from a true foundation rises up into proper superstructures or form, the reason of state is right and streight; but give our politician peace when you please, if your house stands awry, your props do not stand upright.
21. Take a jugler, and commend his tricks never so much, yet if in so doing you shew his tricks you spoil him; which has bin and is to be confess’d of Machiavel.
22. Corruption in government is to be read and consider’d in Machiavel, as diseases in a man’s body are to be read and consider’d in Hippocrates.
23. Neither Hippocrates nor Machiavel introduc’d diseases into man’s body, nor corruption into government, which were before their times; and seeing they do but discover them, it must be confest that so much as they have don tends not to the increase but the cure of them, which is the truth of these two authors.