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[233] acts was to send commissioners to the Government at Washington to adjust amicably all subjects of difference and to provide for a peaceable separation and a fair satisfaction of the mutual claims of the two Confederacies. These commissioners were not received, and all offers for a peaceful accommodation were contemptuously rejected. The authority of our Government itself was denied, its people denounced as rebels, and a war was waged against them, which, if carried on in the spirit it was proclaimed, must be the most sanguinary and barbarous which has been known for centuries among civilized people. The Confederate States have thus been forced to take up arms in defence of their right to self-government, and in the name of that sacred right they have appealed to the nations of the earth, not for material aid or alliances, offensive and defensive, but for the moral weight which they would derive from holding a recognized place as a free and independent people. In asking for this they feel that they will not receive more than they will give in return, and they offer, as they think, a full equivalent for any favor that may thus be granted them. Diplomatic relations are established mainly to protect human intercourse and to adjust peaceably the differences which spring from such intercourse or arise out of the conflicting interests of society. The advantages of such an intercourse are mutual, and in general, as between nations, any one of them receives as much as it gives, to say nothing of the well being of human society which is promoted by placing its relations under the protection and restraints of public law. It would seem, then, that a new Confederacy asking to establish diplomatic relations with the world ought not to be required to do more than to present itself through a government competent to discharge its civil functions and strong enough to be responsible for its actions to the other nations of the earth. After this is shown, the great interests of peace and the general good of society would seem to require that a speedy recognition should follow. It cannot be difficult to show in our case a strict compliance with these, the just conditions of our recognition as an independent people. If we were pleading for favors we might ask and find more than one precedent in British history for granting the request that we be recognized for the sake of that sacred right of self-government for which we are this day in arms, and which we have been taught to prize by the teachings, the traditions and the example of the race from which we have sprung. But we do not place ourselves before the bar of nations to ask for favors; we seek for what we believe to

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