THE FIRST HONOURS of the ancient World were paid to the Founders of Citys; they were esteemed as the Parents from whose Wisdom whole Nations had their being and were preserved. The people carried their Gratitude to excess, and for such actions Romulus and Theseus were placed amongst the Gods. By such great Spirits such Benefactors of Mankind the whole World was filled with Inhabitants. All Countrys were first peopled either By Migrations or Colonys. Of the former the people of Israel was the most wonderfull example in History, Moses led a mighty Nation out of misery and bondage, marched them for 40 Years through Desarts and gave them Laws by which they were established in a fertile Land. The People of Phocea, a Grecian City in Asia powerful at Sea, rather than submit to the Persian Yoke abandoned their native City and trusting to the mercy of the Waves embarked with their Wives and Familys and after a Navigation of . . . Leagues established themselves in Gaul where they founded the City of Marsceilles, which soon grew more potent than that which they had abandoned.1
The way of peopling by Colonys was very ancient and the great City of Carthage it self was a Colony of the Phenicians. Many were planted by the Egyptian Hercules of which time hath effaced the very names.
Then great Nausithous from Hyperia far
Thro’ Seas retreating from the sound of War,
The recreant Nation to fair Scheria led,
Where never Science rear’d her laureld head:
There round his Tribes a strength of Wall he raisd,
To Heav’n the glittering Domes & Temples blaz’d
Just to his Realms he parted Grounds from Grounds
He shar’d the Lands & gave the Lands their bounds.2
From the single City of Athens were 12 Colonys planted in Asia most of which became equal to their Mother City in greatness and Athens at the same time increased in Power, Fame and number of Inhabitants.
After the Destruction of Troy the Grecians sent so many Colonys to Italy that the whole Eastern Coast of that Region was called Graecia Magna.
Theocles first discovered Sicily to the Greeks and leading thither a Colony of the C[h]alcidians built the City of Naxus.3
Syracuse was a Colony of the Corinthians led by Archias.
The Grecians sent forth Colonys as the Bees do Swarms and never thereby weaken the Hive: for the vacancys made by those who went off gave room for others to marry and beget Children. The people all married young, being secure of providing for their Children. Since if their own Countreys refused them sustenance there were new Colonys ready and those taking off Goods made by their native Citys, by increasing the demand of Manufactures increased the number of hands employed in them. This occasioned the Grecians to be exceeding populous so long as they continued sending out of Colonys and after the Romans became powerful, and prevented them from it, they were by degrees so depopulated that when Plutarch writ, all Greece could not furnish 2,500 free Men fit to bear Arms, though in their earlier times Athens only upon the Sicilian expedition put to Sea a Fleet of 130 Galleys 30 Transports, on board which were 5,000 heavy Armed and 6,000 light armed Citizens.
The Grecians when they sent forth Colonys established them free Citys under the same form of Government as their own and reserved no Dominion over them, being contented with providing for their poor, extending their Fame, Language and Commerce by the increase of consumption made by so many Persons enabled to live well and comfortably. Yet did some benefits arise from the Gratitude of their Colonys: The Syracusians when Xerxes with his huge Armys passed the Hellespont, for the relief of Greece armed 30,000 Soldiers and 200 Ships.4 There was a perpetual intercourse of friendly Offices between the Colonys and the Mother Citys till both together sunk under the overbearing Arms of Rome.
The Romans reduced the establishing of Colonys into an Art and made that the basis of Universal Empire. This was their great Elixir and cure of all Political evils. If the oppression of Usurers and misery of the Debtor allarmed the City with Seditions, a sending forth of Colonys thined the multitude, relieved the necessitous and cured the discontents. If a hot aspiring Genius arose, the employing it in deducing a Colony, made that fire which might have destroyed serviceable to his Countrey.5
Their Conquests in Italy were maintained by Colonys and thereby they spared the expence and Danger of mercinary standing Armys. When the great Scipio was called out of Spain to invade Africa, not daring in those extreams to weaken his Army by leaving any strong Garrisons in Spain he formed Colonys of his Invalid Soldiers and incorporating them, founded Citys one of whom from Italy he called the Italian which many years after was famous for the birth of the Emperors Trajan and Adrian.6
These Colonys maintained Spain in Peace and in quiet submission to the Romans without the expence of an Army which the City could then ill spare and by this they avoided the misfortune that Hannibal fell into, who by leaving his Brother with choice Troops for the defence of Spain lost that force which if he had had in Italy, Rome it self must have sunk under the weight of his Arms.
Had the superfluous expences bestowed by Lewis the 14th on building the magnificent Hospital of Invalids been employed in establishing Colonys of his old Soldiers and had he given them leave to marry and Land to support their Familys in his new Conquests; he would not in his latter times have been reduced to those terrible extremitys for want of hands to till the Ground and carry on the War: for by Arithmetical Progression it is demonstrable that from the many thousand Invalids who by a forced celibacy died Childless in the begining of his Reign might have proceeded Children sufficient to have formed mighty Armys in the latter end of it. Had they had Lands they would have married and the Children born in Wedlock would have been reared and not exposed or destroyed as the fruits of a Criminal Conversation generally are.
The larger and more extended the Conquest is, the more the Conqueror is weakened by success and frequent Victorys must render him. To prove this, suppose a State Sovereign of a Country able to keep a hundred thousand Men in pay and to furnish 5,000 for their yearly recruits which may in times of Peace be sufficient. If this State should employ that hundred thousand Men in a victorious War they will be weakened by the Conquest, for that hundred thousand Men employed in War will require at least 30,000 yearly recruits to make up the ravage which the Enemy, Sickness and Fatigue have made, and those 30,000 Men must be taken from useful Employments at home. The publick Revenue will be lessened as much as is gained out of the labour of those Men, for the Taxes which support Government arise from the labour of the Subjects. As for the conquered Countrey, that being ravaged and laid desolate by War, will be very little able to add any thing to the wealth of the Conquerors. Besides if one hundred thousand Men were before necessary and that they have conquered a Countrey in extent and strength equal to their own, they must at least keep two hundred thousand in Arms and by that means lose the labour of one hundred thousand more Subjects to defend and keep in awe the newly subjected people who will naturally be averse to their Government. If according to the modern way the Soldier is unmarried and the rule holds that Males and Females are born in equal numbers, there will be near two hundred thousand Women without Husbands, and the State will lose the Children which would have been produced by so many Marriages.7
It has been proved by thousands of Examples, that Kingdoms are the weaker by Conquests and that the larger the conquered Countrys are, the more it weakens the conquering Nations. It has always this effect, sometimes it is felt immediately as the late King of Sweden experienced who conquered so fast that his Countrey unable to furnish him, he was forced to recruit from the conquered, and he at the Battle of Poultnay [Poltava] found too late that his Army no longer consisted of the brave Sweedish Nations. Sometimes the Wound rankles longer before it breaks out as in the case of Lewis the 14th who felt not so soon the weakness which the extending his Dominions occasioned. But after the Conquests of the Franche Compte, Alsace and Flanders recruits became every year more difficult, the Taxes every year more deficient and the Discipline of the Troops for want of pay and recruits every year relaxed. For a while the decay was patched up by the great Genius’s of Louis Vauban and Luxemburgh, but when the War after the Peace of Reswick was renewed, the ulcerated Wound broke out, even the most populous Kingdom of France not being able to furnish Men for the numerous Garrisons and Armys which those extended Conquests required. His Troops through scarceness of recruits were strong upon Paper, weak in the Field; Battle upon Battle, Town after Town were lost, the more Men he drew from the Plow the more his Revenue decreased, and the Fields for want of hands being left untilled occasioned the Famine in the year 1710.
The Romans knew well how narrow the foundation of one City was to build a mighty Empire upon, they knew well if they went the common way to work that large Conquests would require large Armys and those Armys more recruits and Taxes so that in the end they must sink under the weight of their Victorys. They therefore established Colonys as Brutus says in his Oration to the People after the death of Caesar.
“When they had overcome their Enemys they confiscated not their whole Countrey but contented themselves with taking a part of their Lands which they divided amongst their own Invalids & on them built Citys for them to inhabit & keep the newly subdued People in subjection, but if the conquered Countreys were not sufficient to give a comfortable subsistance to the Colony they added either some of the publick Lands or Lands bought with the publick Money. They also out of the conquered Countrys set aside Rents for the publick Treasury.” And Appian in another place says “The Romans when they conquered any People of Italy confiscated such part of their Lands as they thought convenient & to those they sent Colonys. Sometimes they gave the Citys they had taken ready-built to be inhabited by their own Nation: with these Colonys they Garrisoned the conquer’d Countrys & either set out in equal Shares to those new Inhabitants such Lands as were fit for tillage or else sold or let them to farm in equal divisions. Such Land as was laid waste by War or was uncultivated & therefore not proper to bear a part in the dividend, they proclaimed & gave to such as would improve it, on Condition to pay as an anual Tribute the part of the increase of Trees & the of Corn & a Duty upon all sorts of Cattle as well Flocks as Herds. By the establishing of these Colonys they strove to preserve the Roman & Italian Nations, a laborious race, that they might always have of their own People Soldiers to serve them in extremity.”8
By the means of their Colonys they Garrisond their Conquests and increased their Revenue, so that no sooner was one War ended but they were fresh and vigourous for another. Nor was this the only advantage since hereby they increased the people, for the more employment there is for Men, the more Children will be begotten and the more Men they will be.
Very few but those who are exceedingly debauched would abstain from Marriage if they could be sure of subsistance for themselves and familys equal to their Estate. To encourage the desire of nature the Senate gave power to the Father over his Children till their Marriage and exemption from all services to the Parents of 3 Children, besides which they were sure that if their Children should be too numerous to earn their Bread at home, there would be a comfortable subsistance for them in the Colonys. These encouragements made the Men eager for Marriage and they solicited the Roman Virgins in so effectual a manner that it is remarked in the better ages of the Republick, that no Woman who was not deformed (the Vestal Virgins only excepted) ever lived to the age of 25 Years unmarried. The effects of the Colonys was such that the Roman people increased so wonderfully under all their Wars that when they were numbered in the 210th year from the building of the City they amounted only to 80,000 Citizens and being numbered about the 500th year they amounted to 297797. So that in the space of 290 Years the Citizens of Rome increased 217797 notwithstanding they were frequently afflicted with Plagues and Famine and were the whole time engaged in continual Wars with the Gauls, with Pyrrhus King of Epirus and with the Italian States all whom they in that Space subdued, and in those 290 Years they established above 18 Colonys who generally consisted of upwards of 6000 Familys each. I cannot omit this remark that the Roman method of establishing Colonys answered the end so well, that no one Colony ever rebelled, nor no one Province once conquered by Rome was ever seperated from it till the final division of the Empire.