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d 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 co