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Whig and Tory 'Advices'/Manifestos - British Parliamentary and Electoral Politics, 1688-1832 (HI254)

Instructions to Whig Members, 1701 Aylesbury

The Advice of the County of Bucks to their knights of the shire.

We, the gentlemen and freeholders of the county of Bucks who have now made choice of you to represent us, do depend on you that you will seriously consider that the trust we have reposed in you is of the highest consequence to us and our posterity, and as you value the blessing of Almighty God and the future goodwill of your county, we do exhort, charge and require that you fail not to support the King with the most effective and most equal supplies;

That you endeavour by all methods to restore and keep the credit of the nation;

That you heartily concur in such alliances as the King has or shall make for pulling down the exorbitant power of France, and enable him to make good the same;

That you consider of all ways for maintaining the succession as by law now established;

That you discover, if possible, who they are among us that have any regard, friendship or allegiance to the new Pretender which the French would impose upon us, that such may fall under your just indignation . . .

And that in time of danger, especially, you avoid all such differences, disputes and animosities, as so lately had like to have undone us; taking due care at all times to enquire into and punish all real crimes and mismanagements in public affairs.

These things, and whatsoever else that will appear to you to be necessary for the defence and preservation of our religion and liberty, and the liberties of all Europe, we heartily recommend to you; and we doubt not of your best endeavours, and of the blessing of Heaven on so just and righteous a cause.

Notes

'as so lately had like to have undone us': refers to Tories attempt to impeach Whig leaders

Tory Manifesto for the 1715 Election

These things it may be of use to weigh,... that this is the most critical juncture ever happened; that if the country errs in their choice of representatives now, it will probably be never more in their power to do themselves justice; and that the sale of a man's vote, even for a hundred pound, a price frequently offered, is a wretched bargain, because it is selling it for ever.

Upon the whole, I am far from arrogating to our own party all the good sense and virtue of the nation; but, compare the bulk of each side together, and you will find the Whigs positively bad, the churchmen negatively good. According to which computation I have cast up the account, for the benefit of those who may be at too great a distance from the fountain of affairs to know the true state of them. The following bill of their several deserts is, I think, very exact.

The Merits of the Church-Party

I No new war, no new taxes.

II No attempt against the Church.

III No repeal of the conditions upon which the crown was settled upon the King.

IV No foreigners in employment.

V No standing army.

Vl No long parliament.

Vll No restraint of the liberty of the press.

Vlll No insulting the memory of the Queen.

Total

No alteration of the constitution in Church and State

The Merits of the Whigs

l A new war, six shillings in the pound, a general excise, and a poll-tax.

II A general and unlimited comprehension, without common prayer book or bishops.

III The repeal of the Act of Limitation of the Crown, etc.

IV An equal distribution of places between Turks, Germans, and infidels.

V An augmentation of troops for the better suppressing of mobs and riots.

Vl The repeal of the Triennial Act.

Vll An Act to prohibit all libels in favour of the Church or Churchmen, and to enable all freethinkers to write against God and the Christian religion.

Vlll An encouragement to all men to speak ill of the Queen and her friends.

Total

An entire and thorough revolution.

Utrum horum mavis accipe

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