ividual a chance to bury himself in the mass, and to avoid his duties; further, our cities are now many, and very large, while we are notoriously patient under misrule. In 1760, on the other hand, few towns had as yet adopted city government. Boston was the largest town, and its population was little more than fifteen thousand. So well did its enemies understand one reason for its truculence, that they even considered means to force upon the town a city charter. The question came, however, to no definite proposition. The town therefore proceeded with its open discussion of all public questions, with its right of free speech in town meetings extended even to strangers, and with its viva voce vote letting each man know where his neighbor stood. "The town" was an entity of which each man felt himself a part. As a whole, its self-consciousness was like that of an individual: it could feel a trespass on its privileges as quickly as could the haughtiest monarch of the old world. And all New England was fil
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