. . .John Wilkes, Lord Mayor of London, champion of the people and the homeliest man in Parliament, stood to be heard, and to let there be no doubt that he was John Wilkes.
"I speak, Sir, as a firm friend to England and America, but still more to universal liberty and the rights of all mankind. I trust no part of the subjects of this vast empire will ever submit to be slaves." Never had England been engaged in a contest of such import to her own best interests and possessions, Wilkes said.
We are fighting for the subjection, the unconditional submission of a
country infinitely more extened than our own, of which every day increases the
wealth, the natural strength, the population. Should we not succeed . . . we
shall be considered as their most implacable enemies, and eterrnal spearation will
follow, and the grandeur of the British empire pass away.
The war with "our brethren" in America was "unjust . . . fatal and ruinous to our country," he declared.
Delivered in the House of Commons, October 26, 1775