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palmerston and gladstone

plaudits of the House foretold the victory he had won. It was indeed a masterpiece of telling defence?). The speech occupied some five hours in delivery. It was spoken, as Mr. Gladstone afterwards said, from the dusk of one day to the dawn of the next. It was spoken without the help of a single note. Lord Palmerston always wisely thought that in order to have full command of such an audience a man should, if possible, never use notes. He was,quite conscious of his own lack of the higher gifts of imagination and emotion that make the great orator; but he knew also what a splendid weapon of attack and defence was his fluency and readiness, and he was not willing to weaken the effect of its spontaneity by the interposition of a single note. All this great speech, therefore, full as it was of minute details, names, dates, figures, references of all kinds, was delivered with the same facility, the same lack of effort, the same absence of any adventitious *) aids to memory which characterised Palmerston's ordinary style when he answered a simple question. Nothing could be more complete than Palmerston's success. "Civis Romanus" settled the matter. Who was in the House of Commons so rude that he would not be a Roman? Who was there so lacking of patriotic spirit that would not have his countrymen as good as any Roman citizen of them all?

J. McCarthy, History of Our Own Times. London. 1880.


Sir, I am well prepared, following the example of other and more distinguished men, to bear my share in the abuse which, I doubt not, may attend the part which we shall take on this

1. to teil also means: to produce a marked effect.

2. adventitious: coming from without, not forming an essential part.