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Child of my bowels, Anselm ? Ah, ye hope
My villas : will ye ever eat my heart?
(By permission of Messrs. Chapman and Hall.)
SPEECH OF HORACE WALPOLE,
IN REPROOF OF MR. PITT, AFTERWARDS LORD CHATHAJ. Sir, I was unwilling to interrupt the course of this debate, while it was carried on with calmness and decency, by men who do not suffer the ardour of opposition to cloud their reason, or transport them to such expressions as the dignity of this assembly does not admit. I have hitherto deferred answering the gentleman who declaims against the bill with such fluency and rhetoric, and such vehemence of gesture; who charged the advocates for the expedients now proposed with having no regard to any interest but their own, and with making laws only to consume paper, and threatened them with the defection of their adherents and the loss of their influence, upon this new discovery of their folly and their ignorance-nor, sir, do I now answer him for any other purpose than to remind him how little the clamour of rage, and petulancy of invective, contribute to the end for which this assembly is called together! how little the discovery of truth is promoted, and the security of the nation established by pompous diction and theatrical emotion !
Formidable sounds and furious declamation, confident assertions and lofty periods, may affect the young and inexperienced ; and perhaps the gentleman may have contracted his habits of oratory by conversing more with those of his own age than with such as have more successful methods of communicating their sentiments.
If the heat of his temper, sir, would suffer him to attend to those whose age and long acquaintance with business give them an indisputable right to deference and superiority, he would learn in time to reason rather than declaim ; and to prefer justness of argument and an accurate knowledge of facts to sounding epithets and splendid superlatives, which may disturb the imagination for a moment, but leave no lasting impression on the mind. He would learn, sir, that to accuse and prove are very different ; and that reproaches, unsupported by evidence, affect only the character of him that utters them. Excursions of fancy and flights of oratory are indeed pardonable in young men, but in no other; and it would surely contribute more, even for the purpose for which some gentlemen appear to speak (that of depreciating the conduct of the Administration), to prove the inconveniences and injustice of this bill, than barely to assert them, with whatever magnificence of language, or appearance of zeal, honesty, or compassion.
MR. PITT'S REPLY.
Sir, The atrocious crime of being a young man, which the honourable gentleman has with such spirit and decency charged upon me, I shall neither attempt to palliate nor deny; but content myself with wishing that I may be one of those whose follies may cease with their youth, and not of those who continue ignorant in spite of age and experience.
Whether youth can be attributed to any man as a reproach, I will not, sir, assume the province of determining; but surely age may justly become contemptible, if the opportunities which it brings have passed rway without improvement, and vice appear to prevail when the passions have subsided. The wretch, who, after having seen the consequences of a thousand errors, continues still to blunder, and in whom age has only added obstinacy to stupidity, is surely the object either of abhorrence or contempt, and deserves not that his grey
head should secure him from insults. Much more, sir, is he to be abhorred, who, as he has advanced in age, has receded from virtue, and become more wicked with less temptation,—who prostitutes himself for money which he cannot enjoy, and spends the remains of his life in the ruin of his country.
But youth, sir, is not my only crime: I have been accused of acting a theatrical part. A theatrical part may either imply some peculiarities of gesture or a dissimulation of my real sentiments, and the adoption of the opinions and language of another man.
In the first sense, sir, the charge is too trifling to be confuted, and deserves to be mentioned only that it may be despised. I am at liberty, like every other man, to use my own language; and, though I may perhaps have some ambition to please this gentleman, I shall not lay myself under any restraint, nor very solicitously copy his diction or his mien, however matured by age or modelled by experience.
But if any man shall, by charging me with theatrical behaviour, imply that I utter any sentiments but my own, I shall treat him as a calumniator and a villain; nor shall any protection shelter him from the treatment he deserves. I shall, on such an occasion, without scruple, trample upon all those forms within which wealth and dignity intrench themselves, nor shall anything but age restrain my resentment; age, which always brings with it one privilege, that of being in. solent and supercilious without punishment.
But with regard, sir, to those whom I have offended, I am of opinion that if I had acted a borrowed part I should have avoided their censure; the heat which offended them is the ardour of conviction, and that zeal for the service of my country which neither hope nor fear shall influence me to suppress. I will not sit unconcerned while my liberty is invaded, nor look in silence upon public robbery. I will exert my endeavours, at whatever hazard, to repel the aggressor and drag the thief to justice, whoever may protect him in his villany, and whoever may partake of his plunder.*
MRS. BROWN AND MRS. GREEN.
G. LINNÆUS BANKS. [Mr. Banks was born at Birmingham, in 1821. Early in life he became a member of the press, and successively edited the Birmingham Mercury, Durham Chronicle, and Dublin Daily Express; and subsequently contributed to the “Dublin University, Bentley's," " La Belle Assemblée," and other periodicals. Has written four dramatic pieces-viz., "The Swiss Father'' (a three-act drama), "Better Late than "Never" (a twoact comedy), and two burlesques, “ Harry ye Eighth and ye Doleful Wives of Windsor," and “ Old Maids and Mustard ; or, ye
* It is now generally known that these speeches were written by Dr. Johnson from a few notes surreptitiously obtained; but speeches something like them were spoken by the illustrious men whose names they bear.-Ed.