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chief would necessarily be more modities. Many of the witnesses, permanent and extensive than the who had been captains of East India good; the maxim of political acono- ships, stated, that the commodities my is wise and beneficial, which which by their privilege they were forbids governments to interfere in allowed to carry out were almost matters of trade. With respect to entirely fought by the Europeans the part-culưr case before us, there settled in India, and that they had can be little doubt tha:, whenever in vain endeavoured to find an exthe trade to India is actually open- tensive, ready, or regular market ed, there will be much ignorant, for them among the natives. On rash, and ruinous speculation, and this evidence much weight was laid, many individuals will suffer eventue as it was argued, if those who unit
aily : but, provided the trade will ed in themselves the characters of 1 ultimately open a regular and ex- merchant and mariner, and who
tensive market for our goods, this consequently traded with every ad. evil being temporary, and having a Vantage, could not succeed in sell. necessary tendency to cure itself, is ing their commodities among the comparatively of little moment; and natives, it was not to be expected the apprehension, or even the cer- that our merchants would succeed tainty of it, ought not to be esteem- if the trade were thrown open. To ed sufficient reasons for continuing this it was replied, in the first place, the East India monopoly.
that many of the East India capBut it is further contended, that tains had realized large fortunes by a trade from this country to the their private trade : this however, in E.ist Indies, even when conducted all probability, proceeded from the with adequatoinformation, und with sales which they eifected among the the most comprehensive and calcu. resident Europeins. But, in the selating prudence, cannot prove near- cond place, ilie very circumstance ly so advantageous as is anticipated of their combining the two chiaand expected. This grand point racters of merchant and mariner, the East India compiny, in the evi- would rather be disadvantageous dence they bronght before the than favourable to their success in house of commons, seemed most the former character, on the general anxious to establish: the substance ground that they could not give of this evidence was, that the feel. such undivided attention to their ings and habits and manners of the interests in the latter character as if native inhabitants of India are total they had been merchants only. ly different from these of all other But to consider this brzuch of the people ; that they have no desire to subject on more enlarged principossess any of our commodities, it ples; it cannot be denied, that ar least 10 any considerable extent; present the natives of India are that even the more wealthy classes neither disposed nor able to pur. display no wish for those things chase many of our commodities : with which we could supply them; there is there no middle class, that and that the wants as well as the class for which our staple manu. means of the lower classes are so factures more particularly confined, that they are not either adapted; while the lower and more disposed or able to purchase the numerous classes are too poor to most trifling and cheap of our com- buy them; and the wealth of the
rich is laid out on different articles: nature different from other men;
extent of the trade and partly upon years ; the ships are fitted out in
a great part of the continent of Eu.
the consumption of British produce In the second place, not more than and manufactures in India; beseven or eight voyages are per. cause, they contend, the Americans formed in seventeen or eighteen would acc have been in the constant
habit of taking with them nothing manufactures, employment to Tour but dollars, if any thing else would superfluous population and capital, have answered their purpose as and extension to our commerce, well. But, in the first place, it is could be hurtful to the nation : if not correct that the Americans car- we have rendered it probable that ry dollars only; since their ships such would be the ultimate and pero are generally, if not always, laden manent effects of a free trade to lowith full cargoes of small cost in. dia, we have in fact proved that deed, but of great bulk; and the the nation must be benefited. It dollars are taken merely to pay the is asserted however that the revebalance, since the value of their car- nue would suffer materially,as there goes would not be equivalent to would be great room for smuggling the value of the commodities which in case of a free trade: let us allow they require. In the second place, that smuggling would be increased, the great object of the Americans still it may be doubted whether the is the homeward investment, not revenue would be diminished ; inthe outward cargo; consequently deed, if the East India trade flouby taking dollars they save time, rished and extended, it is probable not being obliged first to sell and that this extension would bring more then to buy, and besides enter the into the revenue than would be "market on better terms. Lastly, taken out of it by smuggling. But the case of America does not apply assuredly means might be fallen to us: she is not a manufacturing upon to prevent an increase of country: we are. If she took out smuggling; and even if no such manufactures to India, they must means can be suggested, is the er. have been previously purchased by tension of trade to be prevented beus, and consequently could not cause smuggling will thereby be meet ours in the market. But the increased ? would this mode of ar. most material reply to the argu- gument be adopted or listened to, ment drawn from the case of the if applied to any plan for extending Americans is, that under other cir- our commerce in any other branch cumstances, the nature as well as where duties are paid? would not the extent of the Indian market that man be laughed at, who should would be essentially changed when-object to a plan for procuring cotever, as we have stated above, our ton in larger quantities--because intercourse with the Indians chang- thus the facilities of evading the ed their habits and wants.
duty on it might be increased? But In the third place, it is contend. this objection is too paltry to be ed by the opponents of a free trade, seriously considered, when the obthat it would not only be injurious ject is one of such infinite importto the company, and the merchants ance as the regulation of our East and manufacturers, but to the na- Indian trade. tion at large : this objection, how- Lastly, it was contended that by ever, is so essentially involved in opening the trade the inhabitants the last which we have consider- of our Indian empire would be ined, that it is scarcely necessary to jured. This certainly is paying dwell upon it any further ; for it ourselves no compliment; for what would not be easy to prove how a is it but asserting, that an intertrade, that would give life to our course with us will injure and not
benefit them? But let us consider present ignorance, degradation, and the objection more particularly and superstition, for the knowledge, inclosely ; it consists of two parts. dependence, and christianity of En.
In the first place, it is said that glishmen? There can be no doubt the English nation in general, and that by this change their situation in particular that class of them and character in every respect which would be most disposed to go would be improved ; but it cannot to India, are very injudicious and be effected unless they come more rude in their attacks on the peculiar closely, generally, and permanently habits and prejudices of foreigners; in contact with Englishmen than and that, from the high idea they they now do, under a restricted entertain of themselves, they are trade; and therefore all partial and very apt to be laughty and violent temporary evil ought to be regarded in their intercourse with them.- as comparatively of no moment, if This natural disposition being com- the great object can be obtained of bined with the feeling and persua. bettering their situation and chasion which, it is said, every Eng racter. lishman in India possesses, that Nearly the same remarks will some share of the sovereignty of apply to the second part of this obthe country belongs to him, as a jection: that a free trade, by opennative of Britain, it is supposed, ing the door to missionaries of all would lead him to behave towards descriptions, would create disturbthe East Indians in such a manner ances in India, and thus prove inas not only would be hurtful to jurious to the natives as well as to their feelings and their comfort, Britain. It appears surprising to but might even provoke them to re- us, how any people wlio profess sistance and rebellion. It is not christianity can object to the em. meant to deny that there is ployment of means for the conniuch truth in this statement: but version of the natives of India :' yet the inference is, not that India some object, not merely to the should be kept locked up from En- modes proposed for their conver. glishmen in general, but that they sion, but even to any attempt of should be governed and watched the kind. That no beneficial while there with great strictness and change would be effected by merely impartiality; and that the natives gaining their assent to doctrines should soon by experience learn, which they did not understand, or that the British government was by inducing them to perform the willing and able to protect them ceremonies, while they were stranfrom oppression and violence. The gers to the moral influence of ultimate and grand question, when christianity, we certainly admit ; these objections are urged, should and if the risqne of provoking always be put :-Would not the them to rebellion were incurred on Hindoos and other natives of In- this account, we should say that it dia be better in every respect ; was incurred for purposes at once better in their intellect, in their contemptible and mischievous : morals, and in the comfort and but when the object is of a higher happiness of their lives, if they cast,' when it aims at the real con. were more like Europeans ;--if they version of the Hindoos, at the could be induced to change their conversion of their ignorance into