Little Jackanips Has Buried Himself in His Own Dirt

Post image for <center>Little Jackanips Has Buried Himself in His Own Dirt</center>

in about Warren

To The True Patriot [i.e. to the pseudonymous Boston Evening-Post writer styling himself A True Patriot of Swanzey], alias, – – creature,

If there had been the least spark of modesty in your whole composition, after being publickly detected in the most impudent malicious fals[e]hoods, you would have bid a lasting adieu to scribbling; at least, you would never again have dared to affront the country with a new budget of slander: But to the surprize of all, you appeared again, not to confess and crave pardon for your former misdemeanours, but that you might fill up the measure of your unexampled knavery. – If as you say, you saw nothing but hurry and confusion when the arrival of the officer, &c. was expected, we must suppose you did not go out of the little circle of mad-brained plotters against public liberty, whose guilty consciences always keep them in that state; but when you say, threats ran high against the officers, and Watchers were employed to give intelligence of their arrival, you assert what has not the least shadow of truth; nor is it in your power to bring a single circumstance in support of your injurious charge against this town: But if there had been such an intention, let me check your vanity, by giving it as my most candid opinion, that the True Patriot might have wrote until his slender skull had burst with ideas of his own importance, before he would have had the least influence in preventing its being carried into execution. – As to the important question of the right of taxation, you “acknowledge yourself not sufficiently qualified to enter into the merits of the cause with that precision and accuracy, which so important a question requires.”  And here be astonished, O reader! – the True Patriot [of Swanzey] has told us no untruth. – As to believing that the Parliament have a right to tax America, because they assert that right, it appears to me absurd; with such an instance as you, Mr. True Patriot, before me, I shall be very cautious how I give my property to any man or body of men, only because he or they claim a right to it. – You are pleased to intimate, that had I expected to have been known to you, I should not have used you so severely as I did in my last: Know now, that you are much mislead; I speak truth, and will never be ashamed or afraid to defend it; if you desire further satisfaction, by calling on the Printers hereof you will be directed to a person who will not only repeat what is there said, to your face, but still harder, make you confess you have been treated more mildly than you have deserved. – Your design of desisting from further publications, I heartily approve, and advise you to abide by it as long as you have a being on earth, lest at some unlucky time disease come upon you, and death overtake you with a pen, which is the same thing as a lie, in your right hand.

The little Jackanips that has of late been so much the occasion of mirth, has very expertly buried himself in his own dirt, where he may lay until some one digs him out, who is more fond of him than

            Ovid de Tristibus.

Source: Boston Gazette, December 28, 1767, issue 665, supplement p. 1

Commentary: I infer that Whig op-ed letter writers appearing in the Edes and Gill’s Whiggish Boston Gazette became increasingly irritated at attention gained by the satirical pseudonymous Boston Evening Post writer A True Patriot of Swanzey. Here a Whig writer wishes the rival Loyalist would  “bid a lasting adieu to scribbling.”

The modern picture of a child playfully burying himself in sand at the beach is a more benign image of what Ovid de Tristibus had in mind for Loyalist A True Patriot of Swanzey.

The underlying offense seems to be that someone other than a certifiable Whig lay claim to the descriptor “patriot.”

Joseph Warren had already weighed into the controversy with a lightweight piece, but the full force of his pen has not yet been amplified in the press.

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