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The great origin of flavery is captivity in war, though fometimes it has commenced by contract. It has been a queftion much agitated, whether either of these foundations of flavery is confiftent with natural justice. It would be engaging in too large a field of enquiry, to attempt reasoning on the general lawfulness of flavery. I truft too, that the liberty, for which I am contending, doth not require fuch a difquifition; and am impatient to reach that part of my argument, in which I hope to prove flavery reprobated by the law of England as an inconvenient thing. Here therefore I fhall only refer to some of the moft eminent writers, who have examined, how far flavery founded on captivity or contract is conformable to the law of nature, and fhall juft hint at the reafons, which influence their feveral opinions. The ancient writers fuppofe the right of killing an enemy vanquished in a juft war; and thence infer the right of enslaving him. In this opinion, founded, as I prefume, on the idea of punishing the enemy for his injuftice, they are followed by Albericus Gentilis, Grotius, Puffendorf, Bynkerfhoek, and many others. But in the Spirit of Laws the right of killing is denied, except in case of abfolute neceffity and for felf-prefervation. However, where a country is conquered, the author feems to admit the conqueror's right of enflaving for a fhort time, that is, till the conqueft is effectually fecured. Dr. Rutherforth, not fatisfied with the right of killing a vanquished enemy, infers the right of enflaving him, from the conqueror's right to a reparation in damages for the expences of the war. I do not know, that this doctrine has been examined, but I muft obferve, that it feems only to warrant a temporary flavery, till reparation is obtained from the property or perfonal labour of the people conquered. The lawfulness of flavery by contract is affented to by Grotius and Puffendorf, who found themselves on the maintenance of the flave, which is the confideration moving from the mafter. But a very great writer of our own country, who is now living, controverts the fufficiency of such a confideration. Mr. Locke has framed another kind of argument against flavery by contract; and the fubftance of it is, that a right of preferving life is unalienable; that freedom from arbitrary power is effential to the exercise of that right; and therefore, that no man can by compact enflave himself. Dr. Rutherforth endeavours to answer Mr. Locke's objection by infifting on various limitations to the defpotifm of the mafter; particularly, that he has no right to difpofe of the flave's life at pleafure. But the misfortune of this reafoning is, that though the contract cannot justly convey an arbitrary power over the flave's
life, yet it generally leaves him without a fecurity against the exercife of that or any other power. I fhall say nothing of flavery by birth; except that the flavery of the child must be unlawful, if that of the parent cannot be justified; and that when flavery is extended to the iffue, as it ufually is, it may be unlawful as to them, even though it is not fo as to their parents. In respect to flavery used for the punishment of crimes against civil fociety, it is founded on the fame neceffity, as the right of inflicting other punishments; never extends to the offender's iffue; and seldom is permitted to be domeftic, the objects of it being generally employed in public works, as the galley-flaves are in France. Confequently this kind of flavery is not liable to the principal objections, which occur against flavery in general. Upon the whole of this controverfy concerning flavery, I think myself warranted in saying, that the justice and lawful. nefs of every fpecies of it, as it is generally conftituted, except the limited one founded on the commiffion of crimes against civil fociety, is at least doubtful; that if lawful, fuch circumftances are neceffary to make it fo, as feldom concur, and therefore render a juft commencement of it barely poffible; and that the oppreffive manner in which it has generally commenced, the cruel means neceffary to enforce its continuance, and the mischiefs ensuing from the permiffion of it, furnifh very strong prefumptions against its juftice, and at all events evince the humanity and policy of those states, in which the use of it is no longer tolerated.
But however reasonable it may be to doubt the justice of domeftic flavery, however convinced we may be of its ill effects, it must be confeffed, that the practice is ancient and has been almost universal. Its beginning may be dated from the remoteft period, in which there are any traces of the history of mankind. It commenced in the barbarous ftate of society, and was retained, even when men were far advanced in civilization. The nations of antiquity moft famous for countenancing the fyftem of domeftic flavery were the Jews, the Greeks, the Romans, and the ancient Germans; amongst all of whom it prevailed, but in various degrees of feverity. By the ancient Germans it was continued in the countries they over-run; and fo was tranfmitted to the various kingdoms and states, which arose in Europe out of the ruins of the Roman empire. At length however it fell into decline in moft parts of Europe; and -amongst the various causes, which contributed to this alteration, none were probably more effectual, than experience of its advantages, the difficulty of continuing it, and a perfuafion that the cruelty and oppreffion almoft neceffarily incident to it were irreconcileable
irreconcileable with the pure morality of the Christian difpenfation. The hiftory of its decline in Europe has been traced by many eminent writers; particularly Bodin, Albericus Gentilis, Potgiefferus, Dr. Robertfon, and Mr. Millar. It is fufficient here to fay, that this great change began in Spain, according to Bodin, about the end of the eighth century, and was become general before the middle of the fourteenth century. Bartolus, the most famous commentator on the civil law in that period, reprefents flavery as in difufe; and the fucceeding commentators hold much the fame language. However, they must be understood with many reftrictions and exceptions; and not to mean, that flavery was completely and univerfally abolished in Europe. Some modern Civilians, not fufficiently attending to this circumftance, rather too haftily reprehend their prede ceffors for reprefenting flavery as difufed in Europe. The truth is, that the ancient fpecies of flavery by frequent emancipations became greatly diminished in extent; the remnant of it was confiderably abated in feverity; the difufe of the practice of enflaving captives taken in the wars between Chriftian powers affifted in preventing the future increase of domeftic flavery; and in fome countries of Europe, particularly England, a ftill more effectual method, which I thall explain hereafter, was thought of to perfect the fuppreffion of it. Such was the expiring ftate of domeftic flavery in Europe at the commencement of the fixteenth century, when the difcovery of America and of the Weftern and Eastern coasts of Africa gave occafion to the introduction of a new fpecies of flavery. It took its rife from the Portuguefe, who, in order to fupply the Spaniards with persons able to fuftain the fatigue of cultivating their new poffeffions in America, particularly the Iflands, opened a trade between Africa and America for the fale of negro flaves. This difgraceful commerce in the human fpecies is faid to have begun in the year 1508, when the first importation of negro flaves was made into Hif paniola from the Portuguese fettlements on the Western coaft of Africa. In 1540 the Emperor Charles the Fifth endeavoured to ftop the progrefs of the negro flavery, by orders that all flaves in the American ifles fhould be made free; and they were accordingly manumitted by Lagafca the governor of the country on condition of continuing to labour for their masters. But this attempt proved unfuccefsful, and on Lagafca's return to Spain domeftic flavery revived and flourished as before. The expedient of having flaves for labour in America was not long peculiar to the Spaniards; being afterwards adopted by the other Europeans as they acquired poffeffions there. In confequence of this general practice, negroes are become a very confiderable article in the commerce between Africa and America; and domestic flavery has taken fo deep a root in most of our
own American colonies, as well as in thofe of other nations; that there is little probability of ever feeing it generally fuppreffed.'
When questions of a general nature and importance are agitated in our courts of law, we fhould imagine it extremely commendable in the counfel if they would fometimes take an opportunity to lay their arguments before the public. An emulation would thus arife where it is much wanted; and England might yet give birth to other Bacons and other Clarendons.
ART. IV. Obfervations on the Character and Condu of a Phyfician. In twenty Letters to a Friend. 8vo. 2 s. 6 d. Johnfon. 1772.
EW of our Readers, we fuppofe, can have forgotten an excellent tract, publifhed in 1769, entitled, Obfervations on the Office and Duties of a Phyfician, written by the very ingenious and worthy Dr. Gregory*, Profeflor of Medicine in the Univerfity of Edinburgh; and of which an account was given in the 41ft volume of our Review, p. 401-412.
The prefent work is, in fome measure, to be confidered as a Supplement to the above-mentioned performance. A particular account of the Author's defign may be given in his own words; and the fame extract will ferve alfo as a specimen of his literary abilities.
When you first confulted me,' fays he, in Letter 1. about educating your fon to a profeffion which I had embraced; I was happy in the thought that I could recommend to you a book written with fo much elegance, and dictated by fuch an amiable difpofition, as the Obfervations on the Duties and Offices of a thyfician; I was especially pleafed to reflect likewife, that the author of it was a gentleman under whofe inftruction your fon was likely to receive all the advantages of his profeffion. But I was afraid how it would fatisfy a mind fo inquifitive as your's with regard to every thing that refpects the welfare of your family, and could almoft have foretold the refult of your reflections upon it. Give me leave, however, to justify the author of that work from your cenfures, if fo harfh a term can be applied to your obfervations. He wrote it, not to a particular friend, who was in doubt, whether his child would fill fuch a flation with propriety, nor to tell the world who were fit perfons to be physicians. It was part of his lectures, and directed to people of all difpofitions and of all capacities. To the indolent and itupid, who had embraced fuch a profeflion without any confideration, but of the gain that was to be made by it; to the man of pleasure, who embraced it, because it was a genteel employment, and introduced him to an agreeable fociety; and to the grave, thinking, and induftrious fcholar, who alone was qualified for the poft. It was not to tell mankind, who
* Dr. Gregory is alfo Author of another applauded work, entitled, A comparative View of the State and Faculties of Man with those of the Animal World: fee Review, vols. xxxiii. and xxxv.
Ought to come and hear his lectures; but, fince ftudents were come, to inform them what character they ought to affume to secure the regards of their fellow mortals.
You obferve, likewife, another deficiency in this work, which I shall endeavour to obviate. There are a thousand circumstances, you justly observe, in a phyfician's conduct, which require an explanation. He lives more particularly with the world perhaps, than a perfon of any other profeffion. He often enters into every fecret circumftance belonging to a family. At times, he is their friend, their parent, their only protector. To know their caprice and humour, therefore, and how to accommodate himself to them in each of these relations, requires an eminent degree of judgment and understanding. But it requires likewise rules, you fay, and rules which this ingenious profeffor hath omitted. He hath very justly omitted them. His pupils were brought from different nations, where a variety of manners and cuftoms must prevail. To have entered therefore minutely into rules, to which the behaviour might be accommodated in all, would have been a difficult task, and to many ufelefs. To have adopted the plan of any one in particular, would have been impertinent and dictatorial. As your fon, however, will most probably practise in England, you will not be displeased with me, if I enter into fome more minute difquifitions, than what have been mentioned by this elegant author. To do this, indeed, is one principal reason why I undertake this correfpondence. But I fhall not flavishly omit whatever he has mentioned, but throw his book entirely afide. You cannot but expect, therefore, to meet often with some of his favourite fentiments, fentiments which have made a very deep impreffion on my mind, and which I would with never to obliterate from it. My method, indeed, will be different from what he has adopted, not because I dislike his plan, but because I allow myself a much larger fcope.
My defign then, Sir, fhall be this. In the first place to fhew you what difpofition of mind, or what characteristic features are ef fential to the profeffion of a phyfician. I fhall next defcribe what improvements are neceffary to conduct him to the threshold of the ftudy of medicine, and then direct how he may cultivate the study itfelf. This will conftitute that part which I call his private character, because it belongs to him as a private independent man, and though neceffary to his future practice, will not be ufelefs if he should decline it. In the next place, I fhall fuppofe him to have finished his education, and to enter upon practice. To engage in the world in a profeffion which calls for the greatest refolution and the most amiable manners. Refolution, to ftand against the tide of oppofition; and amiable manners, to engage the affections of mankind upon his fide. To inform him how to demean himself then in this fituation, will conftitute two parts; the one will confift of a cultivation of thofe general qualities which are fubfervient to these ends, which forms his public character. The other, in a method of conducting himself through life with the variety of perfons with whom he may be engaged, and the characters with which he may be connected. He is often to act in concert with a set of people who are linked with him in the fame profeffion. He is to live harmoniously with them. To do this, requires a circumfpection of behaviour, and