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which communicates to the son a portion of the same respect which was wont to be paid to the virtues, or station of the father—the mutual jealousy of other competitors—the greater envy, with which all behold the exaltation of an equal, than the continuance of an acknowledged fuperiority—a reigning prince leaving behind him many adherents, who can preserve their own importance, only by supporting the succession of his children-Add to these reasons, that elections to the supreme power having upon trial produced destructive contentions, many states would take refuge from a return of the same calamities, in a rule of succession ; and no rule presents itself so obvious, certain, and intelligible, as confanguinity of birth.

The ancient state of society in most countries, and the modern condition of some uncivilized parts of the world, exhibit that appearance, which this account of the original of civil government would lead us to expect. The earliest histories of Palestine, Greece, Italy, Gaul, Britain, inform us, that these countries were occupied by many small independent nations, not much perhaps unlike those which are found at present amongst the savage inhabitants of North America, and upon the coast of Africa. These nations, I consider, as the amplifications of so many single families; or as derived from the junction of two or three families, whom society in war, or the approach of some common danger had united. Suppose a country to have been first peopled by shipwreck on its coasts, or by emigrants or exiles from a neighbouring country, the new settlers having no enemy to provide against, and occupied with the care of their personal subsistence, would think little of digesting a system of laws, of contriving a form of government, or indeed of any political union whatever ; but each fettler would remain at the head of his own family, and each family would include all of every age and generation who were descended from him. So many of these families as were holden together after the death of the original ancestor, by the reasons, and in the method above recited, would wax, as the individuals were multiplied, into tribes, clans, hords, or nations, similar to those into which the ancient inhabitants of many countries are known to have been divided, and which are still found, wherever the state of society and manners is imınature and uncultivated.





Nor need we be surprized at the early existence in the world of some vast empires, or at the rapidity with which they advanced to their greatness, from comparatively small and obscure originals. Whilst the inhabitants of so many countries were broken into numerous communities, unconnected, and oftentimes contending with each other; before experience had taught these little states to see their own danger in their neighbour's ruin ; or had instructed them in the necessity of resisting the aggrandizement of an aspiring power, by alliances and timely preparations; in this condition of civil policy, a particular tribe which by any means had got the start of the rest in strength, or discipline, and happened to fall under the conduct of an ambitious chief, by directing their first attempts to the part where success was most secure, and by assuming, as they went along, those whom they conquered, into a share of their future enterprizes, might foon gather a force, which would infallibly overbear any opposition, that the scattered power and unprovided state of such enemies could make to the progress of their victopiese

Lastly, Lastly, our theory affords a presumption, that the earliest governments were monarchies, because the government of families, and of armies, from which, according to our account, civil government derived its institution, and probably its form, is universally monarchical.




NOULD we view our own species from a

U distance, or regard mankind with the same sort of observation, with which we read the natural history or remark the manners of any other animal, there is nothing in the human character which would more surprize us, than the almost universal subjugation of strength to weakness than to see many millions of robust men, in the complete use and exercise of their personal faculties, and without any defect of courage, waiting upon the will of a child, a woman, a driveller, or a lunatic. And although when we fuppose a vast empire in absolute subjection to one person, and that one depressed beneath the level of his species by infirmities, or vice, we suppose perhaps an extreme case, yet in all cases, even in the most popular forms of civil government, the physical strength resides in the governed.

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