position as themselves.
They were English in thought and habit as in blood.
They were not wanting in patriotism, but as a class they had little faith in the republican polity, and small confidence in the good sense and steadiness of the people.1
They reverenced Alexander Hamilton
, hated Jefferson
, distrusted the Adamses, were more or less in sympathy with the Hartford Convention;2
and as soon as Daniel Webster showed his power and disposition to serve them, they rallied round him as the conservative leader, and followed as he led to the end of his career.
Their typical man was Harrison Gray Otis
a silvertongued orator, who bore a name honored in the colony, and who was a popular favorite, elected often to State and national offices, beginning life as a Federalist, and ending it with a protest against the antislavery cause;4
he sighed in his old age for a more aristocratic polity than ours, and fixed thirty years as the limit of our republican system.
The predictions of his class as to the society of tie future were equally dismal.
, who grew to be less of a republican as he grew older, said that if things went on as they promised, ‘in eighty years there would not be a gentleman left in the country.’5
The Boston men of that day revealed their inner thought to foreigners more than to their own public.
In 1841, at a dinner where old lawyers and Ticknor
were present, Lord Morpeth was struck with the desponding tone, almost amounting to treason to the Constitution
, which they pronounced an utter failure, especially in respect to the election of fit men for President
, whose visit was a few years later, found ‘a vast amount of toryism and donnishness everywhere.’7 Sumner
, who was familiar with the talk at dinners and in drawing-rooms,