previous next
[359] while their campaigns were going on, were constantly censured for their slowness. It is a charge easily made, and not easily answered; for the defence must often rest upon a variety of considerations which the critic is too impatient to listen to. General McClellan is, by nature and temperament, wisely cautious, prudent, and deliberate,--the reverse of rash and impulsive; and these traits are, of course, shown in his military career. lie never incurs great risks or plays a desperate game. He is, besides, a humane man, very careful of the lives of his soldiers, and not needlessly shedding human blood. And, lastly, he is a man of moral firmness and just self-reliance, who will never be induced by popular clamor to take a step which he deems unwise, or forego a precaution which he deems necessary. A man like this at the head of an army will often incur the charge of slowness and inertness, and the charge will be made most positively by those who are the least qualified to form a correct judgment in the premises. Public opinion — that is, contemporaneous public opinion — is not of any great value on a question like this. Ignorance and prejudice are both obstacles in the way to a correct understanding of military measures and military men. A battle won is a fact which all can understand; but comparatively few are competent to determine how much merit is due,

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
George B. McClellan (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: