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[438] however, an argument which does honor even to those against whom it is urged, and which aims to establish future relations of the closest alliance. Senator Sumner's chief reproach is this,—that we have acted unworthily of ourselves, unfaithfully to our deepest convictions and best memories. * * * There runs through the whole of Mr. Sumner's gigantic oration—far too long to have been spoken as printed, but yet without a word of superfluous argument or declamation—an idea on which we can now only touch. From the first sentence to the last, Slavery is present to his mind. It colors all his reasoning. It inspires him to prodigious eloquence. Not merely as the Senator for Massachusetts, the honored chieftain of the political Abolitionists, but as the Chairman on Foreign Relations, he sees everywhere the presence of the Slave Power. Against it he invokes, in periods of classic beauty, all the moral forces of the Mother Country. To England he makes a pathetic and passionate appeal—more for her own sake than that of the slave—more for the sake of the future than of present effects—that she withdraw all favor and succor from Rebel slaveowners.1

1 From our first hundred years, where I treat this whole subject with some portion of the attention which its importance claims, I extract a brief passage:

‘That England should choose such a period of our. national adversity,—such a moment as she had so often passed through, of vindicating the supremacy of government to save civilization—a moment when she saw what she fondly deemed, a fatal blow struck at our prosperity, if not our very existence—at such an hour to join our foes, to make our destruction sure! She was the only nation that contemplated with satisfaction our impending doom! Thank God, she was not to see it! We have been punished for our national sins till the blood burst from every pore; but we did not die. In the Doomsday-Book of Nations, many a leaf must be turned, after England's record is passed, before ours can be reached. Nations never die in the morning of life. They are chastised in their youth, that they may grow up into wisdom and righteousness. But when they have grown hoary in crime, and chastisement will no longer end in reformation, they must go to their graves unwept, unrepentant, unforgiven.’

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