The Life of Henry Fielding, Esq.; With Observations on His Character and Writings

The Life of Henry Fielding, Esq.; With Observations on His Character and Writings

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1807 edition. Excerpt: ...into a regular system. There are of this society of men who appear in all disguises, and mix in most companies. Nor are they better versed in every art of cheating, thieving, and robbery, than they are armed with every method of evading the law, if they should ever be discovered, and an attempt made to bring them to justice. Here, if they fail in rescuing the. prisoner, or (which seldom happens) in bribing or deterring the prosecutor, they have, for their last resource, some rotten member of the law to forge a defence for them, and a number of false witnesses to support it.-Though this account of the extent to which robberies was carried is sufiiciently alarming, yet there is surely little justice in the opinions of Fielding, when he alleges, that, as their number had been increasing, there AMONG the causes of the increase of thieves and robbers, he enumerates the frequent and expensive diversions among the lower orders 0.5 the people, by which they acquired a taste for enjoyments, which led them afterwards to abandon themselves to idleness, when they were either obliged to beg or steal. Drinking spirituous liquors, and gaming, which, he says, is the last great evil that arises from the luxury of the vulgar, he also considers as having a powerful influence in corrupting the morals of the people. 1 there was more danger to be apprehended from them at that time, than at any former period; and that the severity of punishments ought to be increased. Hume informs us, on the authority of Harrison, ' that in the reign of Henry VIII, there were hanged 72,000 thieves and rogues (besides other maltfactors); this makes about 2,000 a year: but in queen Elizabeth's time, there were only between three and four hundred a year hanged for theft more

Product details

  • Paperback | 42 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 2mm | 95g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236835921
  • 9781236835925