Common Sense, British Edition

Thoughts on the Present State of American Affairs

Page 28

28                             COMMON SENSE. 
of each province, for and in behalf of the whole province, by
as many qualified voters as shall think proper to attend from
all parts of the province for that purpose ; or, if more con-
venient the representatives may be chosen in two or three of
the most populous parts thereof. In this conference, thus
assembled, will be united, the two grand principles of busi-
ness, knowledge and power. The members of Congress, Assem-
blies’ or Conventions, by having had experience in national
concerns, will be able and useful counselors and the whole,
being empowered by the people, will have a truly legal

The conferring members being met, let their business be to
frame a CONTINENTAL CHARTER, or Charter of the Uni-
ted Colonies; (answering to what is called the Magna Char-
ta of England) fixing the number and manner of choosing
members of Congress, members of Assembly, with their date
of fitting, and drawing the line of business and jurisdiction
between them: (always remembering, that our strength is
continental, not provincial: ) Securing freedom and property
to all men and above all things, the free exercise of religion,
according to the dictates of conscience : with such other mat-
ter as is necessary for a charter to contain. Immediately after
which, the said Conference to dissolve, and the bodies which
shall be chosen conformable to the said charter, to be the le-
gislators and governors of this continent for the time being:
whose peace and happiness may God preserve. Amen.

Should any body of men be hereafter delegated for this or
some similar purpose, I offer them the following extracts from
that wise observer on governments Dragonetti. “The sci-
"ence” says he “of the politician consents in fixing the true
"point of happiness and freedom. Those men should deserve
"the gratitude of ages, who should discover a mode of go-
"vernment that contained the greatest sum of individual
"happiness, with the least national expence.
                                     Dragonetti on virtue and rewards." 
But where, say some, is the King of America? I’ll tell
you, Friend, he reigns above, and doth not make havoc of
mankind like the Royal Brute of Great Britain. Yet that we may
not appear to be defective even in earthly honors, let a day
be solemnly set apart for proclaiming the charter; let it be
brought forth placed on the divine law, the word of God;
let a crown be placed thereon, by with the world may know



“Common Sense, British Edition,” Common Sense Digital Edition, accessed June 18, 2024,

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