To Dr. Lieber, then at Washington, D. C., he wrote, July 5, 1841:—
I agree with you entirely about Webster's massive and yet graceful letter. 2 It is a chef d'oeuvre;and I do not make the criticism you do with regard to McLeod's release. I think Webster was right in that, and I regard this as one of the most important parts,—the distinct admission, formally and diplomatically, for the first time in history, of a great and important principle of the law of nations. We have long acted upon a silent or implied recognition of that; but now, for the first time, it is distinctly proclaimed and registered in the archives of two great nations.