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CONFEDERATIONS.                                 239
foot by resolutions of the general courts.    The reasons as-
signed were, among others, fear of the savages  and of the
French, with the affinities between the colonies.    Dr. Holmes
(Amer. Annals, i., 270), says that "the union subsisted with
some alterations until 1686, and was  acknowledged by the
authorities in England from its beginning until the restoration,
and in letters from King Charles II.,  notice  is taken  of it
without  any exception  to   the  establishment."    When we
read in Hutchinson's history of Massachusetts the articles of
this union, we are startled and seem to see a project for a
new commonwealth.    It was a firm and perpetual league,
offensive and defensive, between Massachusetts, Plymouth,
Connecticut and New Haven—Aquidnick  or Rhode Island
being kept out by the ill-will  of Massachusetts.     " Each
colony was to retain a distinct and separate jurisdiction, no
two colonies to join in one jurisdiction without the consent
of the whole, and no other colony to be received into the
confederacy without the like consent.    The charges of all
wars, offensive and defensive, to be borne in proportion to
the male inhabitants between sixteen and sixty years of age,
in each colony.     Upon  notice of an invasion   from  three
magistrates of any colony the rest were bound immediately to
send aid, Massachusetts one hundred, and each of the other
colonies forty-five men : and if a greater number should be
necessary the  commissioners were to meet and  determine
upon it.    Two commissioners from each government, being
church-members, were to meet annually the first Monday in
September ; the first meeting to be held at Boston, then at
Hartford, New Haven and  Plymouth, and so yearly in that
order, saving that two meetings successively might be held
at Boston."    Then follow articles to the effect that six com-
missioners shall constitute a majority, that the commissioners
shall have power to establish laws of a civil nature and of
general concern for the conduct of the inhabitants, relative '
to their behavior towards the Indians, to fugitives from one
colony to another and the like ; declaring that no colony shall
engage in war without the consent of the whole except upon