The Infamous, Detestable Scrawl

in about Warren

Date: March 7, 1768

Author: Butler, probably a pseudonym

“The scandalous, factious, threatning Piece, – nay the infamous, detestable virulent scrawl in Edes and Gill’s last Monday’s paper – that so truly deserved the censure of the lower – as well as the upper –, I find was explained away by – C—y and – J—t in a most curious and very extraordinary manner – Nay not only explained away as to its evil tendency and pointedness; but even declared to be praise worthy, & an honor to the author – (Oh strange?) Not so strange good Dr. – as their saying they should as soon take that (sweet innocent performance) to be struck at your Reverence – as at this – : Surely my countrymen, neither your liberties or privileges can be in danger while in the hands of such ingenuous protectors – Ride on then my countrymen; this True Patriot of Edes and Gill’s ushering into the world, and his junto, will conduct you safely to the utmost limits of liberty, and at the same time most carefully avoid bringing you with view of the land of licentiousness. –

Be assured he is not one of the Juntocracy – no, nor a fomenter of disputes – he is a true lover of Great Britain; and will do every thing in his power (which is mighty) to bring the present unhappy difference between her and her colonies to a speedy and happy issue; – I say trust all to those truly honest and ingenuous men; – depend upon it, they will extricate you speedily; – and make you a happy and flourishing people. –

Have no judgment of your own – submit all your matters to your trusty – Jett – and more trusty Clumsy; they I say will extricate you and themselves – to the immortal scandal of all honest men and –  The True Patriot.

I now declare again I will not presume to pay the least attention to either Clumsy – Jett – or any of the Juntocracy – let them spew out their Ingenuity – and the only reason I decline ever answering them is, that they have too ingenuous a turn at subverting matters and subjects to answer their too honest purposes. –

He was in logick a great Critick*

Profoundly skilled in Analytick;

He could distinguish, and divide

A Hair ’twixt South and South-West side;

On either which he would dispute,

Confute, change hands, and still confute;

He’d undertake to prove by force.

Of argument, a Man’s no Horse,

He’d prove a Buzzard is no Fowl,

And that a Lord may be an Owl;

A Calf an Alderman, a Goose a Justice,

And Rooks Committee Men and Trustees.

He’d run in Debt by Disputation, ‡

And pay with Ratiotination.

All this by Syllogism, true

In Mood and Figure, he would do.

            Swanzey, March 5th 1768.      Butler.

* Clumzy –

‡ Jett –

Source: Boston Evening-Post

Commentary: Another Tory critic calls Warren’s pseudonymous A True Patriot to task, labeling his letter as a scurrilous production of the Junto of malevolent Whig insiders. Clumzy and Jett are long-running buffoonish characterizations of James Otis and Samuel Adams (or vice versa).

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