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By Percy Bysshe Shelley

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T£ Philosophical View of Inform 45 it is a certain generosity and refinement of manners and opinion which, although neither philosophy nor virtue, has been that acknowledged substitute for them which at least is a religion which makes respected those venerable names. The other aristocracy is one of attornies and excisemen and directors and government of pensioners, usurers, stockjobbers, country bankers, with their dependents and descendants. These are a set of pelting wretches in whose employment there is nothing to exercise even to their distortion the of the soul.

Not that they are organically different from the inhabitants of the nations who have become ... or rather not that their organical differences, whatever they may amount to, them from arriving at the exercise of the highest powers to be attained by man. Their institutions made them what they were. incapacitate Slavery and superstition, contumely and the tame endurance of contumely, and the habits engendered from generation to generation out ofthis transmitted inheritance of wrong, created the thing which has extinguished what has been called the likeness of God in man.

Almost wholly inoperative to pervert the counsels of the nation from its own advantage. But at that epoch the enormous tyranny of the agents of the royal power weighed equally upon all denominations of men, and united all add to which, the stated before, was in a very con- counsels to extinguish it ; nation, as siderable degree fairly represented in ParliaThe common danger which was the ment. cA ^Philosophical View of ^Rgform 37 and the people having been destroyed, the former systematized their influence through the permanence of hereditary right, whilst the latter were losing power by the inflexibility of the institutions which forbade a just accommoda- bond of union between the aristocracy tion to their numerical increase.

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A Philosophical View Of Reform by Percy Bysshe Shelley


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