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 This was his disposition—never to evade or shift responsibility; and that he did meet it is the reason why the issue is now settled, and that ourselves, not our children, were involved in civil war. When Clay on one occasion bantered him to future discussion, ‘Now is the moment,’ was the prompt rejoinder. But these collisions of debate did not chill the personal relations of these two great leaders. Henry Clay was full of that generosity which recognized the foeman worthy of his steel, and frequently evinced his admiration and friendship for Jefferson Davis. Besides, there was a tie between them that breathed peace over all political antagonism. Lieutenant-Colonel Clay, the son of the Whig leader, had been slain in the battle of Buena Vista. ‘My poor boy,’ said he to Senator Davis, ‘usually occupied about one-half of his letters home in praising you.’ and his eyes filled with tears. When turning to him once in debate, he said: ‘My friend from Mississippi—and I trust that he will permit me to call him my friend, for between us there is a tie the nature of which we both understand.’ Without following, as indeed I could not in this brief hour, the bearings of questions that came before the Senate during his service, or portraying the scenes of digladiation in which they were dealt with, I but pronounce the general verdict when I say that his great parliamentary gifts ranked him easily with the foremost men of that body. He was measured by the side of the giants of his time, and in nothing found unequal.
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