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Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 1, chapter 7 (search)
e question of slavery. I am willing to confess another article of my faith: that the Constitution and government of this country is worth nothing, except it is or can be made capable of grappling with the great question of slavery. I agree with Burke: I have no idea of a liberty unconnected with honesty and justice. Nor do I believe that any good constitutions of government or of freedom can find it necessary for their security to doom any part of the people to a permanent slavery. Such a cedom, if such can be, is in effect no more than another name for the tyranny of the strongest faction; and factions in republics have been and are full as capable as monarchs of the most cruel oppression and injustice. That is the language of Edmund Burke to the electors of Bristol; I agree with it! [Applause.] The greatest praise government can win is, that its citizens know their rights, and dare to maintain them. The best use of good laws is to teach men to trample bad laws under their fee
Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 1, Mobs and education. (search)
greatest, perhaps its only, danger. The planting of these states always amazed the casual observer, and has been a subject of the deepest interest to thoughtful men. The wildest theories of the human reason were reduced to practice by a community so humble that no statesman condescended to notice it, and a legislature without precedent was produced off-hand by the instincts of the people. The profoundest scholar of that day said, No man is wiser for his learning, --a sentiment which Edmund Burke almost echoed; and it seems as if our comparatively unlettered fathers proved it. They framed a government which, after two hundred years, is still the wonder and the study of statesmen. It was only another proof that governments are not made, they grow, that the heart is the best logician, that character, which is but cousin to instinct, is a better guide than philosophy. Wordsworth said, of a similar awakening: A few strong instincts, and a few plain rules, Among the herdsmen of the A
Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 1, chapter 21 (search)
this government, and for twenty years you can never elect a Republican. Presidents must be so wholly without character or principle, that two angry parties, each hopeless of success, contemptuously tolerate them as neutrals. Now I am not exaggerating the moment. I can parallel it entirely. It is the same position that England held in the times of Eldon and Fox, when Holcroft and Montgomery, the poet, Horne Tooke and Frost and Hardy, went into dungeons, under laws which Pitt executed and Burke praised,--times when Fox said he despaired of English liberty but for the power of insurrection,--times which Sidney Smith said he remembered, when no man was entitled to an opinion who had not £ 8,000 a year. Why! there is no right — do I exaggerate when I say that there is no single right?-which government is scrupulous and finds itself able to protect, except the pretended right of a man to his slaves! Every other right has fallen now before the necessities of the hour. Understand me
Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 2, Irish sympathy with the abolition movement. (search)
ling press and prejudiced public could never sever a moment from O'Connell's side,--it is from the sympathy of such men that we have a right to hope much. The image of the generous Isle not only comes to us crowned with the spoil of every science, and decked with the wreath of every muse, but we cannot forget that she lent to Waterloo the sword which cut the despot's shattered sceptre through; and to American ears, the crumbled walls of St. Stephen's yet stand to echo the eloquence of her Burke, when at the foot of the British throne he took his place side by side with that immortal rebel [pointing to the picture of Washington]. From a priest of the Catholic Church we might expect superiority to that prejudice against color which freezes the sympathies of our churches, when Humanity points to the slave. I remember that African lips may join in the chants of the Church, unrebuked even under the proud dome of St. Peter's; and I have seen the colored man in the sacred dress pass with
Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 2, The scholar in a republic (1881). (search)
lusion, from a survey of five hundred years of European history, was, Only by making the ruling few uneasy can the oppressed many obtain a particle of relief. Edmund Burke — Burke, the noblest figure in the Parliamentary history of the last hundred years, greater than Cicero in the senate and almost Plato in the academy — Burke aBurke, the noblest figure in the Parliamentary history of the last hundred years, greater than Cicero in the senate and almost Plato in the academy — Burke affirmed, a century ago, Ireland has learned at last that justice is to be had from England only when demanded at the sword's point. And a century later, only last year, Gladstone himself proclaimed in a public address in Scotland, England never concedes anything to Ireland except when moved to do so by fear. When we remember tBurke affirmed, a century ago, Ireland has learned at last that justice is to be had from England only when demanded at the sword's point. And a century later, only last year, Gladstone himself proclaimed in a public address in Scotland, England never concedes anything to Ireland except when moved to do so by fear. When we remember these admissions, we ought to clap our hands at every fresh Irish outrage, as a parrot-press styles it, aware that it is only a far-off echo of the musket-shots that rattled against the Old State House on the 5th of March, 1770, and of the warwhoop that made the tiny spire of the Old South tremble when Boston rioters emptied the thr<
Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 2, Daniel O'Connell (1875.) (search)
Commons as the Demosthenes of Ireland ; Emmet in the field, Sheridan in the senate, Curran at the bar; and, above all, Edmund Burke, whose name makes eulogy superfluous, more than Cicero in the senate, almost Plato in the academy. All these gave the poured out like water. On this, the genius of Swift, the learning of Molyneux, and the eloquence of Bushe, Grattan, and Burke, had been wasted. English leaders ever since Fox had studied this problem anxiously. They saw that the safety of the embefore had ever dreamed of attempting. Swift and Molyneux were able. Grattan, Bushe, Saurin, Burrowes, Plunket, Curran, Burke, were eloquent. Throughout the Island courage was a drug. They gained now one point, and now another; but, after all, tThe majesty of his indignation, fitly uttered in tones of superhuman power, made him able to indict a nation, in spite of Burke's protest. I heard him once say, I send my voice across the Atlantic, careering like the thunder-storm against the bre
Wendell Phillips, Theodore C. Pease, Speeches, Lectures and Letters of Wendell Phillips: Volume 2, Theodore Parker (1860). (search)
is influence extends very far outside these walls. Every pulpit in Boston is freer and more real to-day because of the existence of this. The fan of his example scattered the chaff of a hundred sapless years. Our whole city is fresher to-day because of him. The most sickly and timid soul under yonder steeple, hide-bound in days and forms and beggarly Jewish elements, little dreams how ten times worse and narrower it was before this sun warmed the general atmosphere around. As was said of Burke's unsuccessful impeachment of Warren Hastings, never was the great object of punishment, the prevention of crime, more completely obtained. Hastings was acquitted; but tyranny and injustice were condemned wherever English was spoken, so we may say of Boston and Theodore Parker. Grant that few adopted his extreme theological views, that not many sympathized in his politics, still, that Boston is nobler, purer, braver, more loving, more Christian to-day, is due more to him than to all the p
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Cheerful Yesterdays, chapter 6 (search)
he is. I did not even learn the lady's name, but years after I met her again, and she recalled the interview; time for her had only confirmed the instantaneous impression which Hurlbert made,--the whole thing suggesting a similar story about Edmund Burke. In Burke's case it was apparently a matter of pure intellect, but in Hurlbert's it was due largely to the constitutional and invariable impulse to attract and charm. I am told — for I had utterly forgotten it — that I myself said of him iBurke's case it was apparently a matter of pure intellect, but in Hurlbert's it was due largely to the constitutional and invariable impulse to attract and charm. I am told — for I had utterly forgotten it — that I myself said of him in those days, He could not stop to buy an apple of an old woman on the sidewalk without leaving her with the impression that she alone had really touched his heart. I have known many gifted men on both sides of the Atlantic, but I still regard Hurlbert as unequaled among them all for natural brilliancy; even Lowell was not his peer. Nor can I be convinced that he was-as President Walker once said to me, when I urged Hurlbert's appointment, about 1850, as professor of history at Harvard--a
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Cheerful Yesterdays, chapter 13 (search)
. The Nemesis of public speaking — the thing which makes it seem almost worthless in the long run — is the impossibility of making it tell for anything after its moment is past. A book remains always in existence,--littera scripta manet,--and long after it seems forgotten it may be disinterred from the dust of libraries, and be judged as freshly as if written yesterday. The popular orator soon disappears from memory, and there is perhaps substituted in his place some solid thinker like Burke, who made speeches, indeed, but was called the Dinner Bell, because the members of Parliament scattered themselves instead of listening when he rose. Possibly this briefer tenure of fame is nature's compensation for the more thrilling excitement of the orator's life as compared with the author's. The poet's eye may be in never so fine a frenzy rolling, but he enjoys himself alone; he can never wholly trust his own judgment, nor even that of his admiring family. A perceptible interval must
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Cheerful Yesterdays, Index. (search)
Boyesen, H. H., 314. Bremer, Fredrika, 011. Brentano, Bettine, 25, 92, 93. Briggs, the Misses, 119. Bright, John, 327. Brook Farm, 83, 84, 120. Brookline, Mass., summer life in, 81. Brown, Annie, 227. Brown, Brownlee, 169. Brown, C. B., 58. Brown, John, 155, 196-234, 240, 242, 243, 246, 327. Brown, Mrs., John, 227, 230. Brown, Madox, 289. Brown, Theophilus, 181. Browning, Robert, 66, 67, 202, 235, 272, 286. Brownson, Orestes, 97. Bryce, James, 97. Bull, Ole, 103. Burke, Edmund, 009, 356. Burleigh, C. C., 327. Burleigh, Charles, 118. Burlingame, Anson, 175. Burney, Fanny, 15. Burns, Anthony, 131, 157, 159, 162, 165, 166. Burns, Robert, 276. Butler, B. F., 337, 342. Butman A. ., 162, 163, 164, L65. Byron, George Gordon, Lord, 15, 23. Cabot, Edward, 9. Cabot, George, 10. Cabot, J. E., 105. Cambridge boyhood, A., 1-37. Cambridge Churchyard, the, 32. Cameron, Mr., 295. Cameron, Mrs. J. M., 284, 295, 296. Campbell, Thomas, 15. Canning, George
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