himself, full length, on the warm heart of the mob, the masses.
came to Greece
, and they asked him what he thought of the Greek Democracy
, when he had heard the orators argue and seen the people vote.
The faithful scholar, with that same timidity which marks the fastidious scholarship of to-day, replied, “I think that wise men argue questions and fools decide them.”
It was a scholar's judgment.
But you sit here to-day with the science of Egypt-its exclusive, fastidious, timid, conservative science — buried in the oblivion of two thousand years; and you live to-day with a hundred idioms of speech borrowed, all your art copied from Greece
, your institutions shaped largely on her model, and your ideas of right and wrong influenced by the hearts that throbbed in that mob of Athens
, two thousand years ago!
[Applause.] Our civilization takes its shape from the Greek,--it is for the people.
There was no private wealth, there was no private interest in Greece
; it was all for one commonwealth; and such should be ours to-day.
Government, I say, is a school.
Two thousand years ago all government thought of was to build up its gallows.
Fine and death were its two punishments; it knew no other.
To use Bulwer
's figure, it put up the gallows at the end of the road, and allowed men to stray as they might.
We have gone on two thousand years, and now we put a guide-board at the beginning, saying, “This is the wrong road.”
We educate men. We have added disgrace, disfranchisement, imprisonment, moral restraint, rewards, and many other things to our list of instruments.
Government is beginning to remember that prevention
is one of its great objects.
It begins to remember that it does not get the right to hang, until it has discharged the duty of education; that until it