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mark the scholar. A special feature of this part of the work is a sketch of the English Constitution and Government, intended as a general introduction to the English speeches.

It has not been thought best to propound any set scheme for instruction. To enter into the high thought of such speeches as these, to appreciate the masterly forging of argument, to realize the far-reaching force and application of ideas, to feel the uplift of noble emotions these are the ends to be reached ; and competent teachers will reach them best by their own methods.

I desire to acknowledge in general my indebtedness to earlier works in this field, particularly to Professor Goodrich's British Eloquence, and to E. J. Payne's Burke: Select Works. But wherever I have availed myself of more than mere suggestion or clew, I have endeavored to make due acknowledgment in the Notes.

First in the list of those to whom I am personally indebted for assistance rendered, I would name Mr. George A. Bacon and Mr. John Allyn, my publishers. From them came the original suggestion of the work; and to their wise counsel and untiring interest it owes far more than its excellence of outward form. To Prof. Charles Mills Gayley, my colleague in the English Department, I am indebted for valuable suggestion in selecting the speeches, and for criticism of portions of my manuscript Notes. In this last acknowledgment must be included also Prof. Carl C. Plehn and Prof. William Carey Jones, who have generously given me the benefit of their criticism on a number of historical and political points encountered in my study. Nor must I forget the kind service rendered me by my nephew, Mr. Evander B. McGilvary, in reading throughout the proof of the Notes.


November 30, 1894.




I HOPE, Sir, that notwithstanding the austerity of the Chair, your good nature will incline you to some degree of indulgence towards human frailty. You will not think it unnatural that those who have an object depending, which strongly engages their hopes and fears, should be 5 somewhat inclined to superstition. As I came into the House full of anxiety about the event of my motion, I found, to my infinite surprise, that the grand penal bill, by which we had passed sentence on the trade and sustenance of America, is to be returned to us from the other 10 House. I do confess I could not help looking on this event as a fortunate omen. I look upon it as a sort of providential favor, by which we are put once more in possession of our deliberative capacity upon a business so very questionable in its nature, so very uncertain in 15 its issue. By the return of this bill, which seemed to have taken its flight forever, we are at this very instant nearly as free to choose a plan for our American Government as we were on the first day of the session. If, Sir, we incline to the side of conciliation, we are not 20 at all embarrassed (unless we please to make ourselves so) by any incongruous mixture of coercion and restraint.

We are therefore called upon, as it were by a superior warning voice, again to attend to America; to attend to the whole of it together; and to review the subject with an unusual degree of care and calmness.

Surely it is an awful subject, or there is none so on this side of the grave. When I first had the honor of a seat in this House, the affairs of that continent pressed themselves upon us as the most important and most

delicate object of Parliamentary attention. My little 10 share in this great deliberation oppressed me. I found

myself a partaker in a very high trust; and, having no sort of reason to rely on the strength of my natural abilities for the proper execution of that trust, I was obliged

to take more than common pains to instruct myself in 15 everything which relates to our Colonies. I was not less

under the necessity of forming some fixed ideas concerning the general policy of the British Empire. Something of this sort seemed to be indispensable, in order, amidst

so vast a fluctuation of passions and opinions, to con2e centre my thoughts, to ballast my conduct, to preserve

me from being blown about by every wind of fashionable doctrine. I really did not think it safe or manly to have fresh principles to seek upon every fresh mail which should arrive from America.

At that period I had the fortune to find myself in perfect concurrence with a large majority in this House. Bowing under that high authority, and penetrated with the sharpness and strength of that early impression, I

have continued ever since, without the least deviation, 30 in my original sentiments. Whether this be owing to an

obstinate perseverance in error, or to a religious adherence to what appears to me truth and reason, it is in your equity to judge.

Sir, Parliament having an enlarged view of objects, 85 made, during this interval, more frequent changes in their


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