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GLADSTONE

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tary for Foreign Affairs to be of such a character. I understand it to be his duty to conciliate peace with dignity. I think it to be the very first of all his duties studiously to observe, and to exalt in honour among mankind, that great code of principles which is termed the law of nations, which the hon. and learned Member for Sheffieldx) has found, indeed, to be very vague in their nature, and greatty dependent on the discretion of each particular country; but in which I find, on the contrary, a great and noble monument of human wisdom, founded on the combined dictates of reason and experience — a precarious inheritance bequeathed to us by the generations that have gone before us, and a firm foundation on which we must take care to build whatever it may be our part to add to their acquisitions, if, indeed, wewishtomaintainand to consolidate the brotherhood of nations, and to promote the peace and welfare of the world.

Sir, the English people, whom we are here to represent, are indeed a great and noble people; but it adds nothing to their greatness or their nobleness, that when we assemble in this place we should trumpet forth our virtues in elaborate panegyrics *), and designate those who may not be wholly of our mind as a knot of foreign conspirators. When, indeed, I heard the hon. and learned gentleman the Member for Sheffield2) glorifying us, together with the rest of the people of this country, and announcing that we soared in unapproachable greatness, and the like, I confess I feit that eulogies such as those savoured somewhat of bombast; and thought it much to the honour of this House that the praises thus vented seemed to fall so flat; that the cookery of the hon. and learned gentleman was evidently seasoned beyond the capacity and relish of our

1. Mr. J. A. Roebuck.

2. panegyrics: see note 2 on p. 18.

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