University of Virginia Library

Search this document 

3747. HISTORY (English), Hume's.—

There is no general history of Great Britain which can be recommended. The elegant one
of Hume seems intended to disguise and discredit
the good principles of the government,
and is so plausible and pleasing in its style
and manner, as to instil its errors and heresies


Page 407
insensibly into the minds of unwary readers.
Baxter has performed a good operation on it.
He has taken the text of Hume as his ground
work, abridging it by the omission of some details
of little interest, and wherever he has
found him endeavoring to mislead, by either
the suppression of a truth, or by giving it a
false coloring, he has changed the text to what
it should be, so that we may properly call it
Hume's history republicanized. He has moreover
continued the history (but indifferently)
from where Hume left it, to the year 1800.
The work is not popular in England, because it
is republican. * * * Adding to this Ludlow's
Memoirs, Mrs. McCauley's and Belknap's
histories, a sufficient view will be presented of
the free principles of the English constitution.—
To John Norvell. Washington ed. v, 91. Ford ed., ix, 72.
(W. 1807)