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[141] or two striking examples. Undoubtedly this is the same imagination that led the tourist to people the Rome before his eye with actors once within her walls. Life was, indeed, breathed into skeleton facts—some new joints being supplied —and life, too, into years of discussion as to the eternal verity of Motley's conception. One item in The rise of the Dutch republic gave Fruin especial concern. That was the use of the term ‘William the Silent.’ He wished that the American had lent his weight towards eliminating the unsuitable adjective from the historical vocabulary. Criticism such as this of Fruin's was the highest compliment that could have been paid to Motley.

The spring of 1861, momentous in the history of the United States, found Motley still in London. He had been abroad at work in the archives ever since the winter of 1856-57, which he had spent in Boston. The first public news of the imminent Civil War must have come to him on Monday, 29 April. That was the day when the Earl of Malmesbury opened the session in the House of Lords with the assumption that ‘Almost all your Lordships must have read the account that arrived this morning from America, and must have learned with pain as well as astonishment that civil war has broken out.’ Humanely rejoicing that no blood had been shed, the Earl proceeded to ask what the noble Lords were going to do towards settling this most unnatural quarrel. Lord Woodhouse replied that, after mature deliberation, the Government had decided that advice on internal matters would be intrusive unless solicited. From that Monday on, the London Times gave much space to comments on the terrible anachronism of war in general, on the horror of seeing thirty million Anglo-Saxons slaying each other like the Indians whom they had displaced, etc., etc. All civil wars known to history were reviewed. In each of these, asserted the Times, a vital principle had been at stake. Each had been justified by the crying needs of religion or civil liberty. But in the United States, no principle was involved. Day after day this statement was reiterated in varying forms. Admitting that, on the whole, they inclined rather to the Northern cause, they still declared that, nevertheless, the actual issue between the two sections was a mere shadow.

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