chapter  55
1 Pages

Goldsmith given credit for having predicted the French Revolution, in an unsigned article in European Magazine, February 1792

This ingenious writer, in his 'Chinese Letters' (first published in 'The Ledger' about the year 1760) seems to have predicted the present Revolution in France. 'As the Swedes,' says he, 'are making concealed approaches to despotism, the French, on the other hand, are imperceptibly vindicating themselves into freedom. When I consider that these Parliaments (the Members of which were all created by the Court, the Presidents of which can act only by immediate direction) presume even to mention privileges and freedom, who till of late, received directions from the Throne with implicit humility:-when this is considered, I cannot help fancying, that the Genius of freedom has entered that kingdom in disguise. If they have but three weak Monarchs more successively on the Throne, the mark will be laid aside, and the country will certainly once more be free.'