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Our sincere condolences are respectfully proffered to Sir Frederick Bruce, the new British Minister to Washington. His predecessor, Lord Lyons, has been literally talked to death by W. H. Seward, in the interminable diplomatic correspondence of the last four years.--The English Government has selected in his place a stalwart Scot, who may be a descendant, for aught we know, of the royal hero of Bannockburn, and who has just emerged unscathed from a protracted campaign of wordy war with the long winded diplomatists of China. We look with breathless interest to the encounter that is now about to begin. The Scotch are an athletic and pertinacious people; high-cheeked, raw-boned, capable of immense endurance; but unless Sir Frederick has a tongue that combines the flexibility of an elephant's trunk and the iron sheathing of a monitor, we expect to see him, in less than two years, in the condition of the Frenchman in Kentucky who engaged in a trial of talking powers with an American competitor — stone dead, and William H. Seward whispering in his ear. We have never heard of any European whose inexhaustible capacities of controversy and peculiar style of conducting an argument would meet the exigencies of the British Government at Washington since the days of a very different Frederick from Bruce, viz: Frederick the Great. He is said to have been very fond of disputation, and, at the same time, very overbearing. When arguments failed, he had recourse to kicking the shins of his opponents. He one day asked one of his suite why he did not venture to express an opinion on the subject that was being discussed. "Sire, it is impossible," was the reply, "to express an opinion in the presence of a sovereign who has such strong convictions, and who wears such thick boots." That kind of diplomacy, however, would not suit Lord John Russell, who dare not, for his life, employ any other weapon with America than words, and the servility of whose house, with some illustrious exceptions, drew from a great English orator the scornful sneer against a former representative of the family: "It is little to be doubted that several of his forefathers, in a long series, have degenerated into honor and virtue." England is a nation of facts, and not of words, its parliamentary speeches and diplomatic correspondence being always condensed and to the point. As a general thing, an English orator or ambassador will express in ten words what an American would not set forth in a hundred. We do not say this in disparagement of British taste. We are willing to take the advice of Burke when he said, "Because half a dozen grasshoppers under a fence make the field ring with their importunate chink, whilst thousand of great cattle reposing under the British oak chew the cud and are silent, pray do not imagine that those who make the noise are the only inhabitants of the field." We imagine no such thing; but the fate of Lord Lyons bears witness that a British Minister, condemned for four years to engage in a competition of words with the voluble representative of the most loquacious people on the face of the earth, has but little chance of surviving the experiment. In America, where the people are looked to for the energies that are to work out political changes, the influence of talking or writing is not likely to be underrated. Thanks to the free institutions and multitude of deliberative assemblies, every mother's son born in America, who has a pair of lungs, believes himself born an curator, and, as a countryman of Sir Frederick Bruce once said, "the more capacious the lungs, the madder the man, until you find some tremendous demagogues, each of whom has capacity for at least a hogshead of atmosphere between back and breastbone, which they spout forth in speech as madly as the whales do the water when they leap and play in the Arctic seas." It is not to be wondered at that the most thorough faced demagogue of modern, times has inundated poor Lord Lyons with a sea of verbiage. We have heard of an American who, in a railroad car, about five hundred miles south of Richmond, commenced a description of a fight he had witnessed between two men, and had just got one of the combatants down when the train arrived at the Petersburg bridge. The Prime Minister of such a constituency could scarcely be expected to do justice to a fight between millions of men in four years; and Sir Frederick Bruce will have to hear the interminable sequel of that story, and discuss, as best he can, the innumerable, points of interest to his Government to which it will give rise. " Veni, Vidi, Vici," is not the Seward style of correspondence. It must be a source of intense gratification to Americans that the British Minister has broken down in an effort to keep pace with the verbosity and endurance of the American champion. In both speed and bottom, the great and glorious Republic defies all rivalry. If they cannot kill the King's English in one way, they can in another. The British Lion has no chance with this Samson of the nations, who needs nothing but the jawbone of an ass to slay any number of his enemies.
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