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he introduces so much novelty, calls to his aid such strong and unexpected arguments, and applies them so admirably to the occasion, that he fascinates even those who are prejudiced against him, or hurries them unresisting along with him.
I have before remarked that the abilities of Mr. Fox are adequate to every possible occurrence. But whenever a subject presents itself, which claims the full exertion of his talents, he stands forth with a kind of luminous activity, and shows how vast are the powers of eloquence. He then seems like a torrent hurrying the mountain rocks before it, and disdaining all restraints of bridges or of banks. This force and celerity of speaking Eupolis formerly admired in Pericles, and the most violent opponents of Mr. Fox hear, confess, and are astonished.
When I contemplate the unworthy fortune which has attended this most exalted character, I am indignant from the memory of the past, and full of grief from the expectation of the future. He himself, however, may proudly claim the public gratitude; for, in the midst of calamity, which menaces the security of the most deserving citizens, he consoles himself with the consciousness of integrity, with the fair and undeluding hope that posterity will render justice to his fame. Dr. Parr*.
* In his dedication of one of the books of Bellandenus, Dr. Parr adds the following testimony to the worth and talents of Mr. Fox :—" With becoming sentiments of reverence, this book is inscribed to Charles James Fox, because he has not only cultivated the purest and most accomplished THE RIGHT HON. W. PITT.
The character of this illustrious statesman early passed its ordeal. Scarcely had he attained the age at which reflection commences, than Europe with astonishment beheld him filling the first place in the councils of his country, and manage the vast mass of its concerns with all the vigour and steadiness of the most matured wisdom. Dignity, strength, discretion, these were among the masterly qualities of his mind at its first dawn. He had been nurtured a statesman, and his knowledge was of that kind which always lies ready for practical application. Not dealing in the subtleties of abstract politics, but moving in the slow, steady procession of reason, his conceptions were reflective, and his views correct. Habitually attentive to the concerns of government, he spared no pains to acquaint himself with whatever was
eloquence, but applied it, in all its perfection, to the safety and dignity of his country; because, in contracting either friendships or enmities, he has always shown himself in the former immutable, placable in the latter; because, with a mind firm, consistent, invincible, he has continued steady to his principles, disdaining the resentments of wicked men; because, in a business obviously claiming the public regard, he conducted himself, not as the insidious follower of popularity, but with perseverance and with fortitude; because, lastly, in that most dishonourable shipwreck of a most excellent and sagacious senate, he deemed that, and that only, to be afflicting, which he knew to be base. To be the noble guardian of the public weal, in conjunction with virtuous men, was to him far more estimable than a union with those who were unprincipled, pregnant with danger, perfidy, and avarice."
connected, however minutely, with its prosperity. He was devoted to the state: its interests engrossed all his study and engaged all his care: it was the element alone in which he seemed to live and move. He allowed himself but little recreation from his labours; his mind was always on its station, and his activity was unremitted.
He did not hastily adopt a measure, nor hastily abandon it. The plan struck out by him for the preservation of Europe was the result of prophetic wisdom and profound policy. But though defeated in many respects by the selfish ambition and short-sighted imbecility of foreign powers, whose rulers were too venal or too weak to follow the flight of that mind which would have taught them to outwing the storm, the policy involved in it has still a secret operation on the conduct of surrounding states. His plans were full of energy, and the principles which inspired them looked beyond the consequences of the hour. In a period of change and convulsion, the most perilous in the history of Great Britain, when sedition stalked abroad, and when the emissaries of France and the abettors of her regicide factions formed a league powerful from their number, and formidable by their talent, in that awful crisis the promptitude of his measures saved his country.
He knew nothing of that timid and wavering cast of mind which dares not abide by its own decision. He never suffered popular prejudice or party clamour to turn him aside from any measure which his deliberate judgment had adopted; he had a proud reliance on himself, and it was justified. Like the sturdy warrior leaning on his own battleaxe, conscious where his strength lay, he did not readily look beyond it.
As a debater in the House of Commons, his speeches were logical and argumentative: if they did not often abound in the graces of metaphor, or sparkle with the brilliancy of wit, they were always animated, elegant, and classical. The strength of his oratory was intrinsic; it presented the rich and abundant resource of a clear discernment and a correct taste. His speeches are stamped with inimitable marks of originality. When replying to his opponents, his readiness was not more conspicuous than his energy: he was always prompt and always dignified. He could sometimes have recourse to the sportiveness of irony, but he did not often seek any other aid than was to be derived from an arranged and extensive knowledge of his subject. This qualified him fully to discuss the arguments of others, and forcibly to defend his own. Thus armed, it was rarely in the power of his adversaries, mighty as they were, to beat him from the field. His eloquence, occasionally rapid, electric, vehement, was always chaste, winning, and persuasive, not awing into acquiescence, but arguing into conviction. His understanding was bold and comprehensive: nothing seemed too remote for its reach, or too large for its grasp. Unallured by dissipation, and unswayed by pleasure, he never sacrificed the national treasure to the one, or the national interest to the other. To his unswerving integrity the most authentic of all testimony is to be found in that unbounded public confidence which followed him throughout the whole of his political career.
Absorbed as he was in the pursuits of public life, he did not neglect to prepare himself in silence for that higher destination, which is at once the incentive and reward of human virtue. His talents, superior and splendid as they were, never made him forgetful of that Eternal Wisdom from which they emanated. The faith and fortitude of his last moments were affecting and exemplary. In his forty-seventh year, and in the meridian of his fame, he died on the twentythird of January,1806.
RIGHT HON. G. CANNING.
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I have some difficulty in delivering my sentiments concerning the style of this young man's eloquence, because there are few adequate judges of the matter itself; but a vast multitude who are ignorantly devoted to his cause. They who are without the faculty of taste and judgment are filled with admiration whenever they hear what is beyond the line of their experience or somewhat too refined for their comprehension.
They who think deeper than the vulgar will allow that to be, at best, but a popular and plausible eloquence, which glitters with puerile points; which swells with tumid insignificance; which carries its bombast almost to frenzy, and mistakes the rash for the sublime. That species of eloquence which Hume declared he could conceive in his mind, but never knew to be attained, his partisans appropriate to the minis