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n this terrible moment, there is no other way to that sincere and solid peace without which there will be endless war. Even on economic grounds, it were better that this war should proceed, rather than recognize any partition, which, beginning with humiliation, must involve the perpetuation of armaments, and break out again in blood. But there is something worse than waste of money: it is waste of character. Give me any peace but a liberticide peace. In other days the immense eloquence of Burke was stirred against a regicide peace. But a peace founded on the killing of a king is not so bad as a peace founded on the killing of liberty; nor can the saddest scenes of such a peace be so sad as the daily life which is legalized by slavery. A queen on the scaffold is not so pitiful a sight as a woman on the auctionblock. Therefore I say again, forward! forward! . . . Thus far we have been known chiefly through that vital force which slavery could only degrade, but not subdue. Now at
atness . . . O Eternal King, O Father, Son, and Spirit! give him peace. In person Mr. Sumner was tall, dignified, and commanding. His countenance generally wore a serious aspect; and his deportment was that of a well-bred and courteous gentleman. The whitened locks and furrowed cheek bespoke in later years the care and suffering to which his iron frame had been subjected. His friends are pleased to fancy that in respect to face and form, as well as character, he somewhat resembled Edmund Burke. Had he been more sensible to the charms of this visible creation, to the harmonies of nature, and to the tones of music; had he more fondly cherished the affections of domestic life,--his heart would have known more consolation, his character would have been more completely rounded out. But, as the ancients often said, It is not meet that every good should be conferred on one alone. He held in most profound respect the principles of Christianity, and based thereon his strongest argumen
C. Edwards Lester, Life and public services of Charles Sumner: Born Jan. 6, 1811. Died March 11, 1874., Section Fourth: orations and political speeches. (search)
s faith; how he, more than any other man in our history, illustrated what was so well applied to Burke, that he never gave up to party what was meant for mankind. III. Although Mr. Sumner harinciples of morals only, let me invoke the example of the Whigs of England, of Chatham, Camden, Burke, Fox and Sheridan, in their opposition to the war of our Revolution; denouncing it, at the outsee war carrying on against America is unjust. In the Commons, March 11th, 1776, Col. Barre, Mr. Burke, Mr. Fox, all vied in eulogies upon General Montgomery, the account of whose death before Queba; if we are reduced to that, I am for abandoning America. In the Commons, Nov. 6th, 1776, Mr. Burke said: You simply tell the Colonists to lay down their arms, and then you will do just as In the Commons, May 14th, 1777, another debate occurred on the Budget, in the course of which Mr. Burke said: He was and ever would be ready to support a just war, whether against subjects or
r fairly expressed in some statute that was never afterwards to be repealed. And yet he seldom rose on the floor of the Senate to announce for the first time a new step in advance, without finding himself nearly alone; generally without supporters; sometimes without one:—and all through this protracted struggle for principle, he was not only subject to the violent persecution of the public press, and the desertion of personal friends, but the object of official insults, and even attempts at Senatorial degradation. Thus in tracing his career, we shall mark these points as we pass by them, only indicating them now in brief, that the reader may bear in mind these strong attributes of Mr. Sumner's character, to enable him more fully to comprehend how arduous was his warfare, how immovable was his integrity, how sublime was his faith; how he, more than any other man in our history, illustrated what was so well applied to Burke, that he never gave up to party what was meant for mankind.
onclusions upon general principles of morals only, let me invoke the example of the Whigs of England, of Chatham, Camden, Burke, Fox and Sheridan, in their opposition to the war of our Revolution; denouncing it, at the outset, as unjust, and never, have always said that the war carrying on against America is unjust. In the Commons, March 11th, 1776, Col. Barre, Mr. Burke, Mr. Fox, all vied in eulogies upon General Montgomery, the account of whose death before Quebec had arrived some days ring or abandoning America; if we are reduced to that, I am for abandoning America. In the Commons, Nov. 6th, 1776, Mr. Burke said: You simply tell the Colonists to lay down their arms, and then you will do just as you please. Could the mor retaining America. In the Commons, May 14th, 1777, another debate occurred on the Budget, in the course of which Mr. Burke said: He was and ever would be ready to support a just war, whether against subjects or alien enemies; but where
ion from the ancient records of the common law, so familiar and dear to the framers of the Constitution. It is said by Mr. Burke, in his magnificent speech on Conciliation with America, that nearly as many of Blackstone's Commentaries were sold in he scaffold or to exile, even as their country's enemies. And those brave Englishmen, who, at home, under the lead of Edmund Burke, even against their own country, espoused the cause of our fathers, shared the same illogical impeachment, which was ts. But the same ignominious confession was made, some time after the war, in open debate, on the floor of Congress, by Mr. Burke, a Representative from South Carolina:— There is not a gentleman on the floor who is a stranger to the feeble sit was assembled without any requisition on the part of the Supreme Power. Another petition from New York, presented by Edmund Burke, was flatly rejected, as claiming rights derogatory to Parliament. And still another petition from Massachusetts Bay
, the claim to any fugitive always and necessarily presumes that the value in controversy exceeds twenty dollars. By these successive steps, sustained by decisions of the highest tribunal, it appears, as in a diagram, that the right of Trial by Jury is secured to the fugitive from service. This conclusion needs no further authority; but it may receive curious illustration from the ancient records of the common law, so familiar and dear to the framers of the Constitution. It is said by Mr. Burke, in his magnificent speech on Conciliation with America, that nearly as many of Blackstone's Commentaries were sold in America as in England, carrying thither the knowledge of those vital principles of Freedom, which were the boast of the British Constitution. Imbued by these, the earliest Continental Congress, in 1774, declared, That the respective Colonies are entitled to the common law of England, and especially to the great and inestimable privilege of being tried by their peers of th
hat peace on earth which he came to declare. The disciples, while preaching the Gospel of forgiveness and good-will, were stoned as preachers of sedition and discord. The reformers, who sought to establish a higher piety and faith, were burnt at the stake as blasphemers and infidels. Patriots, in all ages, who have striven for their country's good, have been doomed to the scaffold or to exile, even as their country's enemies. And those brave Englishmen, who, at home, under the lead of Edmund Burke, even against their own country, espoused the cause of our fathers, shared the same illogical impeachment, which was touched to the quick by that orator-statesman, when, after exposing its essential vice, in attributing the ill-effect of ill-judged conduct to the arguments used to dissuade us from it, he denounced it as very absurd, but very common in modern practice, and very wicked. Ay, sir, it is common in modern practice. In England, it has vainly renewed itself with special frequen
revolt or desert.—Vol. i. p. 105. Here is South Carolina secretly disclosing her military weakness, and its ignoble occasion; thus repudiating, in advance, the vaunt of her Senator, who finds strength and gratulation in Slavery rather than in Freedom. It was during the war that she thus shrived herself, on bended knees, in the confessional of the Continental Congress. But the same ignominious confession was made, some time after the war, in open debate, on the floor of Congress, by Mr. Burke, a Representative from South Carolina:— There is not a gentleman on the floor who is a stranger to the feeble situation of our State, when we entered into the war to oppose the British power. We were not only without money, without an army or military stores, but we were few in number, and likely to be entangled with our domestics, in case the enemy invaded us.—Annals of Congress, 1789, 1791, vol. II. p. 1484. Similar testimony to the weakness engendered by Slavery was also bo<
ity are alike fatal. And now he stands forth the most conspicuous enemy of that unhappy Territory. As the tyranny of the British King is all renewed in the President, so are renewed on this floor the old indignities which embittered and fomented the troubles of our fathers. The early petition of the American Congress to Parliament, long before any suggestion of Independence, was opposed—like the petitions of Kansas—because that body was assembled without any requisition on the part of the Supreme Power. Another petition from New York, presented by Edmund Burke, was flatly rejected, as claiming rights derogatory to Parliament. And still another petition from Massachusetts Bay was dismissed as vexatious and scandalous, while the patriot philosopher who bore it was exposed to peculiar contumely. Throughout the debates our fathers were made the butt of sorry jest and supercilious assumption. And now these scenes, with these precise objections, are renewed in the American Sena
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