Letter from Emigrant Clergy
Newcastle Chronicle, June 1802
The following Address has been sent to the different persons in this town, who have shewn respect and civility to the Emigrant Clergy. We are induced to give it all the publicity in our power, as containing a just compliment to the national character for hospitality, which every Englishman must be proud of; and at the same time to shew the high sense of gratitude felt by the parties, for the kindness and protection they have experienced during their residence in this country.
The Address of the French Clergy, residing in the North of England, to the Gentlemen of the Committee, formed in their favour, at Newcastle upon Tyne, 1796, to the subscribers, to the clergy, to the gentlemen of the medical faculty, and to their benefactors in general.
Gentlemen, - We earnestly implore Heaven to bless, with many happy years, your renowned and great King; great is his beneficence to us, great in the love and attachment he has constantly shewn to his people. We offer, as a tribute justly due from us, our most profound respects to the august senate of the nation, whose generosity has been annually renewed in our favour, in an extraordinary, and, we believe, unprecedented manner. We sincerely wish joy and prosperity to the English in general, who are worthy of our warmest eulogiums, as well for their characteristic amiableness, their frank and generous conduct, as the welcome, with which they received us on our arrival. May England hold up to nations the mirror of happiness, as she has given to the world a model of beneficence. Such, gentlemen, are the sentiments of all the French Clergy, dispersed through the different countries of this hospitable kingdom, and these sentiments, that gratitude which will ever cleave to their hearts, commands them thus publicly to declare. But this general and sincere declaration of gratitude does not satisfy the feelings of we who have had the good fortune to reside in the North of this happy empire.
When we arrived on your coasts, you, gentlemen, looking upon us as victims devoted for adhering to our duty, not only graciously received us under your protection, but also, in the most friendly manner, gave us every assistance. In health, we have been in want of nothing; in sickness, we have experienced the most ready assistance; and that, in general, without expectation, on your part, of any other reward than the consoling satisfaction you felt in prolonging our lives.
Nothing has been spared on your part to assuage the sorrows of our exile; and what has most sensibly affected us, we frequently knew not what hand to bless, for the favours we have received. many, therefore, are our obligations to you; and sensible of them, but not able to express them as we wish, we hereby present you themost grateful sentiments of our hearts. As you have heaped favours upon us without ceasing, so shall our gratitude, joined with admiration, continue during the remainder of our lives. We will daily implore the Supreme Dispenser of All Things to recompense your generosity with still more abundant riches; your hospitality, and other virtues, with his most signal favours. Receive, then, Gentlemen, these lively and sincere sentiments, which are presented to you unanimously by:
Your humble servants
THE FRENCH CLERGY