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Exrac s from Lord Chesterfield's Letters,
8vo edition, 1775.

LETTER CCLXV.

London, Dec. 25, 1758.

THE first squabble in Europe that I foresee, will be about the crown of Poland.

Wherever you are, inform yourself minutely of, and attend particularly to, the affairs of France; they grow serious, and in my opinion will grow more and more so every day. The king is despised, and I do not wonder at it; but he has brought it about to be hated at the same time, which seldom happens to the same man. His ministers are known to be as disunited as incapable: he hesitates between the church and the parliaments, like the ass in the fable, that starved between two hampers of hay; jealous of the parliaments, who would support his autho rity; and a devoted bigot to the church, who would destroy it. The people are poor, consequently discontented: those who have religion are divided in their notions of it; which is saying, that they hate one another. The clergy never do forgive, much less will they forgive the parliament: the parliament never will forgive them. The army must, without doubt, take, in their own minds, at least, different parts in all these disputes, which upon occasion will break

out. Armies, though always the supporters and tools of absolute power for the time being, are always the destroyers of it too, by frequently changing the hands in which they think proper to lodge it. This was the case of the Prætorian bands, who deposed and murdered the monsters they had raised to oppress mankind. The Janissaries in Turkey, and the regiments of guards in Russia, do the same now. The French nation reasons freely, which they never did before, upon matters of religion and government, and begin to be spregiudicati; the officers do so too; in short, all the symptoms which I have ever met with in history, previous to great changes and revolutions in government, now exist, and daily increase in France.

This letter may very properly be considered both prophetic and admonitory; prophetic as it related to the French empire, where its predictions have been fulfilled; and highly worthy of attention in all other states where, when similar symptoms appear, they should beware of like consequences.-Ed.

LETTER CCXLIV.

London, April 13, O. S. 1752.

THEY tell the king (speaking of France) very respectfully, that in a certain case, which they should think it criminal to suppose, they would not obey him. This hath a tendency to what we call here revolution principles. I do not know what the Lord's anointed, his vicegerent upon earth, divinely appointed by him, and accountable to none but him for his actions, will either think or do, upon these symptoms of reason and good sense which seem to be breaking out all over France; but this I foresee, that before the end of this century, the trade of both king and priest will not be half so good a one as it has been. Du Clos, in his reflections, hath observed, and very truly, “qu'il y a un germe de raison qui commence à se développer en France." A développement that must prove fatal to regal and papal pretensions. Prudence may, in many cases, recommend an occasional submission to either; but when that ignorance, upon which an implicit faith on both could only be founded, is once removed, God's vicegerent (meaning the king) and Christ's vicar (or clergy) will only be obeyed and believed, as far as what the one orders, and the other says, is conformable to reason and truth.

The following remarkable Prophecies are taken from the work of Michael Nostradamus, the celebrated physician to Henry II. king of France, and were first published in the year 1555, and re-published, with a Translation and Annotations, in London, 1672.

CENTURY I.

LXX.

French.

PLUYE, faim, guerre, en Perse non cessée,
La foy trop grande trahira le monarque ;
Par la finie en Gaule commencée,
Secret augure pour a un estre parque.

English.

The rain, famine, war, in Persia being not ceased,
Too great credulity shall betray the monarch;
Being ended there, it shall begin in France,
A secret omen to one that he shall die.

Annot. The meaning of the two first verses is, that while the rain, famine, and war, shall be in Persia, a monarch shall be betrayed by his credulity. The third verse signifieth that this rain, famine, and war, being ended in Persia, it shall

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begin in France. And the fourth verse, that this shall be an omen to a great person of his approaching death.*

LXXII.

French.

Du tout Marseille des habitans changée,
Course et poursuite jusques pres de Lion,
Narbon, Tholoze, par Bourdeaux outragée,
Tuez, captifs presque d'un milion.

English.

Marseille shall wholly change her inhabitants; These shall run and be pursued as far as Lion; Narbon, Tholoze, shall wrong Bourdeaux ; There shall be killed and taken prisoners almost a million.

Annot.

Marseilles is a sea town in Provence, Narbon and Tholoze are cities of Languedoc, and Bourdeaux is the chief town in Gascony; the rest is easy to be understood.

No sooner had the treaty of peace been settled between Lord Cornwallis and Tippoo Saib, than war was declared against France, which proves a striking instance of the truth of this prediction.

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