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[365] and gave me a long message of regrets for you and Anna, . . . . adding, that if either of us want anything in Paris that he can do for us, he shall always be charmed to do it. . . . . I sat next to Lord Aberdeen, and had some very interesting talk with that wise old statesman. Lady Stanhope was charming, as I think she always is, and so was Lady Lyell.

The next three or four hours I spent in hard work at the British Museum, and then went by appointment to the Athenaeum, and was taken by Lord Stanhope to the House of Lords, and placed on the ‘steps of the throne,’—as the place is called, and really is,—to hear a great debate on the ‘Oaths Bill,’ or the bill that should permit Jews to sit in Parliament. . . . . I was in a good neighborhood. Milman stood next to me, and introduced me to Elwin, editor of the ‘Quarterly,’ and I talked with both a good deal. . . . . Sundry of the lords came to the rail, which separated me from their consecrated body, and spoke to me,—Lord Stanhope, Lord Glenelg, Lord Granville, and others. . . . . The debate was very exciting, if not very able, and produced all its effect in that grand hall, so imposing, so suited to its grave purpose. Earl Granville opened the discussion. He is a graceful, fluent speaker, not very powerful, but a man who produces upon you the impression that he is in earnest, and means to be fair. Lord Stanley followed, vehement and subtle, but not persuasive. Then came Lord Lyndhurst, compact, logical, and very exact in his choice of language. These were the three principal speakers. Of the three, Lord Lyndhurst was decidedly the ablest as a debater, and what he said lost none of its force from the circumstance that he is eighty-five years old, and more . . . . . The bill was lost by thirty-four, as was foreseen. But I did not wait for the division; I was too tired. I had given up a pleasant dinner, and at twelve o'clock,—having had not so much as a drop of water since the brilliant breakfast of the morning,—I went to the Athenaeum, ordered mutton-chops and sherry, and enjoyed my dinner, I assure you . . . .

July 11.—I breakfasted tete-á--tete with Mr. Bates, and had a long and very satisfactory conversation with him about the Library. Then I went to Stirling's, and worked in his library two or three hours, till I was obliged to go and make some calls, after which . . . . I came home and rested till it was time to go to dinner at the Lyells', where I had an uncommonly good time with the Heads, and a small party consisting of the Pertzes and two or three others. Ellen and Twisleton were engaged elsewhere, for which I was sorry, for Sir Edmund was in great feather, and very amusing. . . . .


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