In the heat of the battle for parliamentary reform William Cobbett preached to the working people of England in his inimitable blustery dictums. “[I]f you labour honestly,” he counselled, “you have a right to have, in exchange for your labour, a sufficiency out of the produce of the earth, to maintain yourself and your family as well; and, if you are unable to labour, or if you cannot obtain labour, you have a right to maintenance out of the produce of the land […]”. For honest working men this was part of the legacy of constitutional Britain, which bequeathed to them not only sustenance but, “The greatest right […] of every man, the right of rights, […] the right of having a share in the making of the laws, to which the good of the whole makes it his duty to submit”. Nonetheless, he warned, such rights could not legitimately negate the toiling lot that was the laborer's fate: “Remember that poverty is decreed by the very nature of man […]. It is necessary to the existence of mankind, that a very large proportion of every people should live by manual labour […]”.