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The Grand Old Man by Richard B. Cook

Part 5 out of 6

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In April, 1870, a party of English travelers in Greece were seized by
brigands. The ladies were released and also Lord Muncaster, who was sent
to Athens to arrange for ransom and a free pardon. But the Greek
Government sending soldiers to release the captives and capture the
captors, the English were murdered. The English Minister at Athens was
in treaty for the release of his countrymen, but the great difficulty
was to procure pardon from the Greek government. This terrible affair
created a profound sensation in England, and it was brought before
Parliament. Mr. Gladstone pleaded for further information before taking
decided steps. But for the arrest and execution of most of the brigands,
and the extirpation of the band, the diabolical deed went unavenged.

In July, war broke out suddenly between France and Germany, which
resulted in the dethronement of Napoleon III. England preserved
neutrality. However, Mr. Gladstone had his opinion regarding the war and
thus represented it: "It is not for me to distribute praise and blame;
but I think the war as a whole, and the state of things out of which it
has grown, deserve a severer condemnation than any which the nineteenth
century has exhibited since the peace of 1815." And later, in an
anonymous article, the only one he ever wrote, and which contained the
famous phrase, "the streak of silver sea," he "distributed blame with
great impartiality between both belligerent powers."

Among the business transacted in the session of 1870 was the following:
All appointments to situations in all Civil Departments of the State,
except the Foreign Office and posts requiring professional knowledge,
should be filled by open competition; and the royal prerogative that
claimed the General Commanding-in-Chief as the agent of the Crown be
abolished, and that distinguished personage was formally declared to be
subordinate to the Minister of War. Mr. Gladstone announced the
intention of the government to release the Fenian prisoners then
undergoing sentences for treason or treason-felony, on condition of
their not remaining in or returning to the United Kingdom. The Premier,
alluding to the enormity of their offenses, said that the same
principles of justice which dictated their sentences would amply
sanction the prolongation of their imprisonment if the public security
demanded it. The press and country generally approved this decision of
the Premier, but some condemned him for the condition he imposed in the
amnesty. The religious test imposed upon all students entering at the
universities was abolished, and all students of all creeds could now
enter the universities on an equal footing. Heretofore special
privileges were accorded to members of the Established Episcopal Church,
and all others were cut off from the full enjoyment of the

A bill to establish secret voting was rejected by the Lords, but was
passed the next session. The House of Lords, emboldened by their success
in throwing out the voting bill, defeated a bill to abolish the purchase
of commissions in the army, but Mr. Gladstone was not to be turned from
his purpose, and startled the peers by a new departure--he dispensed
with their consent, and accomplished his purpose without the decision of
Parliament. Finding that purchase in the army existed only by royal
sanction, he, with prompt decision, advised the Queen to issue a royal
warrant declaring that on and after November 1, 1871, all regulations
attending the purchase of commissions should be cancelled. The purchase
of official positions in the army was thus abolished. It was regarded as
a high-handed act on the part of the Prime Minister, and a stretch of
executive authority, and was denounced by Lords and Commons, friends and
foes. Tories and Peers especially were enraged, and regarded themselves
as baffled.

The condition of affairs in Ireland was alarming. The spread of an
agrarian conspiracy at Westmeath compelled the government to move for a
committee to inquire into the unlawful combination and confederacy
existing. "Mr. Disraeli was severely sarcastic at the expense of the

The grant proposed by the government to the Princess Louise on her
marriage aroused the opposition of some members of the House, who
claimed to represent the sentiments of a considerable number of people.
It was proposed to grant £30,000 and an annuity of £6,000. The Premier
stated that the Queen in marrying her daughter to one of her own
subjects, had followed her womanly and motherly instincts. He dwelt upon
the political importance of supporting the dignity of the crown in a
suitable manner; upon the value of a stable dynasty; and the unwisdom of
making minute pecuniary calculations upon such occasions. It was carried
by a remarkable majority of 350 votes against 1.

In 1871 the treaty of Washington was concluded. But the Geneva awards
for the damage done to American shipping by the "Alabama," did much to
undermine Mr. Gladstone's popularity with the warlike portion of the
British public and there were various indications that the Ministry were
becoming unpopular. There were other causes tributary to this effect.
His plans of retrenchment had deprived Greenwich of much of its trade,
hence his seat was threatened. Mr. Gladstone resolved to face the
difficulty boldly, and to meet the murmurers on their own ground,
October 28, 1871, he addressed his Greenwich constituents. The air was
heavy with murmurs and threats. Twenty thousand people were gathered at
Blackheath. It was a cold afternoon when he appeared bare-headed, and
defended the whole policy of the administration. "His speech was as
long, as methodical, as argumentative, and in parts as eloquent, as if
he had been speaking at his ease under the friendly and commodious
shelter of the House of Commons." The growing unpopularity of the
Government was evidenced in the first reception given to the Premier by
his constituents. Groans and cheers were mingled, and his voice at first
was drowned by the din. Finally he was heard, and won the day, the
people enthusiastically applauding and waving a forest of hats. One
cause of unpopularity was what is called "the Ewelme Scandal," and
another the elevation of Sir Robert Collin to the Judicial Committee of
the Privy Council.

Mr. Gladstone said: "I have a shrewd suspicion in my mind that a very
large proportion of the people of England have a sneaking kindness for
the hereditary principle. My observation has not been of a very brief
period, and what I have observed is this, that wherever there is
anything to be, done, or to be given, and there are two candidates for
it who are exactly alike--alike in opinions, alike in character, alike
in possessions, the one being a commoner and the other a lord--the
Englishman is very apt indeed to prefer the lord." He detailed the great
advantage which had accrued from the legislation of the past generation,
including free-trade, the removal of twenty millions of taxation, a
cheap press, and an education bill, Mr. Gladstone thus restored himself
to the confidence of his constituents, but the ministry did not wholly
regain the popularity they once enjoyed. The Gladstone period had passed
its zenith and its decadence had already begun.

During the autumn Mr. Gladstone received the freedom of the city of
Aberdeen, and made a speech, in which occurred a remarkable reference to
"the newly-invented cry of Home Rule." He spoke of the political
illusions to which Ireland was periodically subject, the extremes to
which England had gone in satisfying her demands, and the removal of all
her grievances, except that which related to higher education. He said
that any inequalities resting between England and Ireland were in favor
of Ireland, and as to Home Rule, if Ireland was entitled to it, Scotland
was better entitled, and even more so Wales.

Ireland had proved the glory of Mr. Gladstone's administration. Its name
had been associated with the most brilliant legislative triumphs of
government. But Ireland was also destined to be the government's most
serious stumbling-block, and fated to be the immediate measure of its
overthrow. In the session of 1873 Mr. Gladstone endeavored to further
his plans for Reform, and consequently vigorously attacked the third
branch of the "upas tree," to which he had referred. He labored to put
the universities on a proper basis, that they might be truly educational
centres for the whole of Ireland, and not for a small section of its
inhabitants alone. This step followed legitimately after the
disestablishment of the Irish Church. He introduced to this end a large
and comprehensive measure, but although it was favorably received at the
outset, a hostile feeling soon began and manifested itself. Mr.
Gladstone pleaded powerfully for the measure, and said: "To mete out
justice to Ireland, according to the best view that with human infirmity
we could form, has been the work--I will almost say the sacred work--of
this Parliament. Having put our hands to the plough, let us not turn
back. Let not what we think the fault or perverseness of those whom we
are attempting to assist have the slightest effect in turning us, even
by a hair's-breadth, from the path on which we have entered. As we begun
so let us persevere, even to the end, and with firm and resolute hand
let us efface from the law and practice of the country the last--for I
believe it is the last--of the religious and social grievances of
Ireland." Mr. Disraeli made fun of the bill, stalwart Liberals condemned
it, and the Irish members voted against it, hence the bill was defeated
by a small majority of three votes. Mr. Gladstone consequently resigned,
but Mr. Disraeli positively declined to take office with a majority of
the House of Commons against him, and refused to appeal to the country.
Mr. Gladstone read an extract from a letter he had addressed to the
Queen, in which he contended that Mr. Disraeli's refusal to accept
office was contrary to all precedent. But under the extraordinary
circumstances he and his colleagues consented to resume office, and they
would endeavor to proceed, both with regard to legislation and
administration upon the same principle as those which had heretofore
regulated their conduct. Mr. Lowe, the Chancellor of the Exchequer,
having resigned, Mr. Gladstone assumed the duties of the office himself,
thus serving in the double offices of Premier and Chancellor. During the
recess various speeches were made in defence of the Ministerial policy,
but the government failed to recover its once overwhelming popularity.

On the 19th of July, 1873, Mr. Gladstone lost by sudden death one of his
oldest and most highly esteemed friends--Samuel Wilberforce, Bishop of
Winchester. He was riding to Holmbury with Earl Granville, when he was
thrown from his horse and killed instantly.

The end of Mr. Gladstone's first ministry was now drawing near. The
people no longer desired to keep up with the reforming zeal of the
administration. Mr. Disraeli's strongly exaggerated description of the
Premier's policy had the effect of forming the popular discontent;
Liberal members were deserting him. The Bible was in danger of being
left out of the schools, and beer was threatened with taxation. The flag
of "Beer and the Bible"--strange combination--having been hoisted by
clergy and publicans, the cry against the ministry became irresistible.
Deserted by the people and by many of his own party, what was to be done
unless to appeal to the country and decide by a general election what
was wanted and who would be sustained.

January, 1874, Mr. Gladstone issued a manifesto dissolving Parliament.
In this document, entitled to be called a State paper for its political
and historical importance, Mr. Gladstone stated his reasons for what was
regarded by many as a _coup d' tat_. It is impossible to describe the
public excitement and confusion which attended the general election thus
unexpectedly decreed. Mr. Gladstone, recovering from a cold, appealed
with great energy to Greenwich for re-election. The general election
resulted in the defeat of the Liberals, and gave to the Conservatives a
majority of forty-six in the House. Mr. Gladstone was elected, but
Greenwich which returned two members, placed the Premier second on the
poll--below a local distiller. Following the example of his
predecessor, in 1868, Mr. Gladstone resigned. "Thus was overthrown one
of the greatest administrations of the century; indeed, it may be
doubted whether any other English Ministry was ever able to show such a
splendid record of great legislative acts within so short a period.
There was not one measure, but a dozen, which would have shed lustre
upon any government; and the six years of Mr. Gladstone's first
Premiership are well entitled to the epithet which has been accorded to
them of 'the Golden Age of Liberalism.'"

Before the next Parliament met Mr. Gladstone was to give the country
another surprise. He was now sixty-four years old, had been forty years
in active parliamentary labors, and thought himself justified in seeking
rest from the arduous duties of public life, at least the pressing cares
as leader of one of the great political parties. When his contemplated
retirement had before become known to his friends, they induced him for
a while longer to act as leader, but in February, 1875, he finally
retired from the leadership and indeed appeared but rarely in the House
of Commons during that session.

"The retirement of Mr. Gladstone from active leadership naturally
filled his party with dismay. According to the general law of human
life, they only realized their blessings when they had lost them. They
had grumbled at their chief and mutinied against him and helped to
depose him. But, now that this commanding genius was suddenly withdrawn
from their councils they found that they had nothing to put in its
place. Their indignation waxed fast and furious, and was not the less
keen because they had to some extent, brought their trouble on
themselves. They complained with almost a ludicrous pathos that Mr.
Gladstone had led them into a wilderness of opposition and left them
there to perish. They were as sheep without a shepherd and the ravening
wolves of Toryism seemed to have it all their own way."

Between the time of Mr. Gladstone's retirement from the Premiership and
his resignation of leadership in the House, he had quickly reappeared in
the House of Commons and vigorously opposed the Public Worship
Regulation Bill. Mr. Gladstone attacked the bill with a power and
vehemence which astonished the House. The great objection to it was its
interference with liberty, and with the variety of customs which had
grown up in different parts of the country. To enforce strict uniformity
would be oppressive and inconvenient. The bill became law, however,
though it has largely proved inoperative, Mr. Gladstone also opposed the
Endowed Schools Act Amendment Bill, which practically gave to the Church
of England the control of schools that were thrown open to the whole
nation by the policy of the last Parliament. So great a storm was raised
over this reactionary bill that Mr. Disraeli was obliged to modify its
provisions considerably before it could become a law. Mr. Gladstone was
also active at this time in delivering addresses at Liverpool College,
the Buckley Institute and the well-known Nonconformist College at
Mill Hill.

[Illustration: MR. GLADSTONE'S MAIL]



During his retirement from the leadership of the Liberal Party, Mr.
Gladstone employed his great abilities in theological controversy and
literary productions. It was during this period that he collected his
miscellaneous writings, entitled "Gleanings from Past Years." A little
more than a year had elapsed when he again entered the political arena.
"He threw aside polemics and criticisms, he forgot for awhile Homer and
the Pope," and "rushed from his library at Hawarden, forgetting alike
ancient Greece and modern Rome," as he flung himself with impassioned
energy and youthful vigor into a new crusade against Turkey. A quarter
of a century before he had aroused all Europe with the story of the
Neapolitan barbarities, and now again his keen sense of justice and
strong, humanitarian sympathies impel him with righteous indignation to
the eloquent defence of another oppressed people, and the denunciation
of their wrongs. It was the Eastern Question that at once brought back
the Liberal leader into the domain of politics. "The spirit of the
war-horse could not be quenched, and the country thrilled with his fiery
condemnation of the Bulgarian massacres." His activity was phenomenal.
"He made the most impassioned speeches, often in the open air; he
published pamphlets which rushed into incredible circulations; he poured
letter after letter into the newspapers; he darkened the sky with
controversial postcards, and, as soon as Parliament met in February,
1877, he was ready with all his unequalled resources of eloquence,
argumentation and inconvenient enquiry, to drive home his great
indictment against the Turkish government and its champion, Mr.
Disraeli, who had now become Lord Beaconsfield."

"The reason of all this passion is not difficult to discover. Mr.
Gladstone is a Christian; and in the Turk he saw the great
anti-Christian power where it ought not, in the fairest provinces of
Christendom, and stained with the record of odious cruelty practised
through long centuries on its defenceless subjects who were worshippers
of Jesus Christ."

Turkish oppression, which had for a long time existed in its worst
forms, resulted in an insurrection against Turkey and Herzegovina,
July 1, 1875. This, however, was only the beginning, for others suffering
under Ottoman oppression rebelled, and all Europe was involved.

In January, 1876, the Herzegovinians gained a victory over the Turkish
troops. The European powers then suggested a settlement favorable to the
insurgents, which was accepted by the Sultan. But early in May another
insurrection broke out in several Bulgarian villages, which was quickly
followed by the most horrible atrocities. A conference on the Eastern
question was held at Berlin in May, and soon afterward the English
ministers announced in Parliament that they were unable to assent to the
terms agreed upon at the Berlin Conference. This announcement caused
much surprise and comment in England. Public feeling already aroused,
was not allayed when it became known that the British fleet in the
Mediterranean had been ordered to Besiki Bay, seemingly for the
protection of the Turkish Empire.

June 28th the Bulgarian insurrection was suppressed. On the 10th of July
the Sultan, Abdul Aziz, was deposed and was succeeded by Murad V, who
declared that he desired to guarantee liberty to all. Mr. Disraeli
stated, in the House of Commons, that the steps taken by the Ministry
would lead to permanent peace. But within two weeks the _Daily News_
published a letter from Constantinople detailing the massacre in
Bulgaria by the Turks, which moved all England with indignation.
Innocent men, women and children had been slaughtered by the thousands;
at least sixty villages had been utterly destroyed; the most revolting
scenes of violence had been enacted; and a district once the most
fertile in the Empire had been laid waste and completely ruined. Forty
girls were shut up in a straw loft and burnt, and outrages of the most
fearful description were committed upon hundreds of defenceless

Mr. Disraeli, in the House of Commons, grew "jocular upon the cruelties
and sufferings almost unparalleled in the world's history," and
expressed his belief that the outrages committed by the Turkish troops
had been exaggerated, and sneered at the rumor as "coffee-house babble;"
while as to the torture of the impalement, which had caused universal
anger and disgust, that an Oriental people have their way of executing
malefactors, and generally terminated their connection with culprits in
an expeditious manner.

In the official report presented to Parliament by Mr. W. Baring, the
reported outrages in Bulgaria were corroborated. No fewer than 12,000
persons had perished in the sandjak of Philippopolis! The most fearful
tragedy, however, was at Batak, where over 1000 people took refuge in
the church and churchyard. The Bashi-Bazouks fired through the windows,
and, getting upon the roof, tore off the tiles and threw burning pieces
of wood and rags dipped in petroleum among the mass of unhappy human
beings inside. At last the door was forced in and the massacre was
completed. The inside of the church was then burnt, and hardly one
escaped. "The massacre at Batak was the most heinous crime which stained
the history of the present century;" and for this exploit the Turkish
Commander, Achmet Agha, had bestowed on him the order of the Medjidie.
Sir Henry Elliot, the English Ambassador at Constantinople, was directed
to lay these facts before the Sultan and to demand the punishment of the
offenders. The demand, however, was never enforced.

Prince Milan issued a proclamation to his people, declaring that, while
professing neutrality, the Sultan had continued to send military forces
of savage hordes to the Servian frontier. In June, Prince Milan left
Belgrade and joined his army on the frontier. The Montenegrins declared
war on Turkey and joined forces with Servia. July 6th the Servians were
defeated. Thus was Turkey plunged into war with her Christian provinces,
and all through her own misrule in peace and her barbarities in war.

Mr. Disraeli in a speech made in the House of Commons, August 11th,
explained that he had not denied the existence of the "Bulgarian.
Atrocities," but he had no official knowledge of them. He affirmed that
Great Britain was not responsible for what occurred in Turkey, nor were
the Turks the special _protégés_ of England. He announced that the
special duty of the Government at that moment was to preserve the
British Empire, and that they would never consent to any step that would
hazard the existence of that empire, This speech, which was
distinguished by much of his old brilliancy and power, was his last
speech in the House. On the morning after this speech it was publicly
announced that Mr. Disraeli would immediately be elevated to the peerage
under the title of the Earl of Beaconsfield.

In September, 1876, deeming it high time that the indignant voice of
England should be heard in demonstration of the infamous deeds practiced
by the Turk, Mr. Gladstone issued his pamphlet, entitled "Bulgarian
Horrors and the Question of the East." It had an enormous circulation.
He called for a stop to be put to the anarchy, the misrule and the
bloodshed in Bulgaria, and demanded that the Ottoman rule should be
excluded, not only from Bosnia and Herzegovina, but also from Bulgaria.
The Turks must clear out, "bag and baggage," from the provinces they
have desolated and profaned. The pamphlet, and the latter expression
especially, produced a great sensation.

The pamphlet "brought home to the English people the idea that for these
horrors which were going on, they too, as non-interfering allies of
Turkey, were in part responsible." Soon after this Mr. Gladstone
addressed a large concourse of his constituents at Blackheath, in which
he severely arraigned the Government. This address was one of the most
impassioned and eloquent of Mr. Gladstone's political orations, and at
some points the people were literally carried away with their feelings.

November 1st, Turkey was forced by Russia to agree to an armistice of
eight weeks. On the 2d the Russian Emperor pledged his word to the
English Ambassador that he had no intention of acquiring Constantinople;
that if compelled to occupy Bulgaria, it would be only until the safety
of the Christian inhabitants be secured; and urged the Ambassador to
remove the distrust of Russia prevailing in England. Yet, in the face of
all these assurances, Lord Beaconsfield delivered a war-like speech, at
the banquet at Guildhall, November 9th. Informed of this speech the Czar
declared that if the Porte did not accede to his demands, Russia would
then act independently.

On the 8th of December there was a great conference at St. James' Hall,
London, to discuss the Eastern question. The Duke of Westminster
presided at the afternoon meeting. At the evening gathering Lord
Shaftesbury occupied the chair. Mr. E. Freeman said: "Perish the
interests of England, perish our dominion in India, sooner than we
should strike one blow or speak one word on behalf of the wrong against
the right." The chief interest of the occasion centered in the speech of
Mr. Gladstone who was received with unbounded applause. He declared that
there had been no change in public sentiment in England on the question;
that the promoters of that meeting had no desire to embarrass the
Government; that the power and influence of England had been employed to
effect results at variance with the convictions of the country; that
Lord Beaconsfield had only recently appeared anxious; and that England
had duties towards the Christian subjects of Turkey. Mr. Gladstone
continued that he hoped that the instructions given to Lord Salisbury,
who had been sent for conference to Constantinople, were not in
accordance with the speech at Guildhall, but that he would be left to
his own clear insight and generous impulses; that the conference would
insist upon the independence of the provinces, or at least would insure
them against arbitrary injustice and oppression, and that the work
indicated was not merely a worthy deed but an absolute duty.

Mr. Gladstone, during the recess of Parliament, delivered speeches upon
the burning question of the day all over England. At Hawarden he
pleaded that it was the wretched Turkish system that was at fault, and
not the Turks themselves, and hoped for a remedy. To the electors of
Frome he spoke of the tremendous responsibility of the Ministers. In a
speech at the Taunton Railway Station, he said, in reference to the
injunction for himself and friends to mind their own business, that the
Eastern question was their own business. And when the Constantinople
Conference failed he spoke of this "great transaction and woeful
failure," and laid all the blame of failure on the Ministry. As to the
treaties of 1856 being in force, his opinion was, that Turkey had
entirely broken those treaties and trampled them under foot.

January 20, 1877, the conference closed. Parliament met February 8, 1877,
and the conflict was transferred from the country to that narrower
arena. In the House of Lords the Duke of Argyle delivered a powerful
speech, to which the Premier, Disraeli, replied, that he believed that
any interference directed to the alleviation of the sufferings of the
Turkish Christians would only make their sufferings worse. He asked for
calm, sagacious and statesmanlike consideration of the whole subject,
never forgetting the great interests of England, if it was to have any
solution at all.

Mr. Gladstone, upon his appearance in the House, was greeted as a Daniel
come to judgment. He was taken to task by Mr. Chaplin, who complained
that Mr. Gladstone and others of the Liberal party "had endeavored to
regulate the foreign policy of the country by pamphlets, by speeches at
public meetings, and by a so-called National Conference, instead of
leaving it in the hands of the Executive Government," and intimated that
Mr. Gladstone was afraid to meet the House in debate upon the question.
Mr. Gladstone, rebuking Mr. Chaplain, said that it was the first time in
a public career extending over nearly half a century, he had been
accused of a disinclination to meet his opponents in a fair fight, and
promised him that neither he nor his friends would have reason to
complain of his reticence. Tories and Liberals knew he had not shrunk
from meeting the public on this question. He was glad that there was a
tremendous feeling abroad upon this Eastern question. He had been told
that by the pamphlet he wrote and the speech he delivered, he had done
all this mischief, and agitated Europe and the world; but if that were
the case why did not the honorable gentleman, by writing another
pamphlet, and delivering another speech, put the whole thing right? If
he (the speaker) had done anything, it was only in the same way that a
man applies a match to an enormous mass of fuel already prepared. Mr.
Gladstone closed with the following words: "We have, I think, the most
solemn and the greatest question to determine that has come before
Parliament in my time.... In the original entrance of the Turks into
Europe, it may be said to have been a turning point in human history. To
a great extent it continues to be the cardinal question, the question
which casts into the shade every other question."

April 24, 1877, war was declared by Russia against Turkey. The Czar
issued a manifesto, assigning as reasons for this war the refusal of
guarantee by the Porte for the proposed reforms, the failure of the
Conference and the rejection of the Proteol signed on the previous 31st
of March. England, France and Italy proclaimed their neutrality. Mr.
Gladstone initiated a great debate in the House of Commons, May 7th,
which lasted five days. He presented a series of resolutions expressing
grave dissatisfaction with the policy of Turkey, and declared that she
had forfeited all claim to support, moral and material. Mr. Gladstone
asked whether, with regard to the great battle of freedom against
oppression then going on, "we in England could lay our hands upon our
hearts, and in the face of God and man, say, 'We have well and
sufficiently performed our part?'"

These resolutions were of course hostile to the Government, and many
Liberals refused to vote for them, because they pledged England to a
policy of force in connection with Russia. Besides the Government gave
assurances to avail themselves of any opportunity of interposing their
good offices. The resolutions consequently were lost. Mr. Gladstone was
not quite the leader of his party again.

Shortly after this debate, and before the close of the session, Mr.
Gladstone addressed a large meeting at Birmingham on the Eastern
question and the present condition of the Liberal party. Later on he
visited Ireland. On his return he addressed, by their request, the
people gathered to receive him. He expressed his belief that Turkey
would have yielded to the concerted action of Europe; noticed the change
in the tone of the ministry from the omission in the Premier's speech of
the phrase, "the independence of Turkey;" protested strongly against
England being dragged into war, and warmly eulogized the non-conformists
for the consistency and unanimity with which they had insisted on
justice to the Eastern Christians. Political feeling entered into
everything at this time, but as an evidence of the hold Mr. Gladstone
retained in the Scottish heart, he was in November elected Lord Rector
of Glasgow University by a large majority. Lord Beaconsfield was the
retiring Lord Rector, and the Conservatives nominated Sir S. Northcote,
the Chancellor of the Exchequer, as Mr. Gladstone's opponent.

The war in the East went disastrously for the Ottoman arms. January 23,
1878, the Porte agreed to accept the terms of peace submitted by the
Grand Duke Nicholas.

Mr. Gladstone was invited January 30, 1878, to attend a meeting of
undergraduates at Oxford, held to celebrate the formation of a Liberal
Palmerston Club. He strongly condemned the sending of the British fleet
into the Dardanelles as a breach of European law; and confessed that he
had been an agitator for the past eighteen months, day and night, to
counteract what he believed to be the evil purposes of Lord

In February the House of Commons passed a vote of credit, but on the 3d
of March a treaty of peace was signed between Turkey and Russia, at
Sanstefano, the terms of which in part were: Turkey to pay a large war
indemnity; Servia and Montenegro to be independent and to receive
accessions of territory; Bulgaria to be formed into a principality with
greatly extended boundaries, and to be governed by a prince elected by
the inhabitants; the navigation of the Straits was declared free for
merchant vessels, both in times of peace and war; Russian troops to
occupy Bulgaria for two years; Batoum, Ardahan, Kars and Bayazid, with
their territories, to be ceded to Russia, and Turkey to pay an indemnity
to Roumania. The terms of the treaty were regarded oppressive to Turkey
by the Beaconsfield Ministry, who proposed that the whole treaty be
submitted to a congress at Berlin, to meet in June, 1878. The treaty was
approved after some modifications. The English Plenipotentiaries were
the Earl of Beaconsfield and Marquis of Salisbury, who, for their share
in the treaty, received a popular ovation and rewards from the Queen.
Thus was Turkey humiliated and Russia benefited, having obtained her
demands. To the people assembled Lord Beaconsfield said from the window
of the Foreign Office: "Lord Salisbury and myself have brought you back
peace, but a peace, I hope with honor, which may satisfy our Sovereign
and tend to the welfare of the country." But at this very time the envoy
of Russia, whom the ministry thought to be circumvented, was entering
the Afghan capital; so that, although there was peace on the Bosphorus,
as a direct result of the Eastern policy, there was war in Afghanistan.
The Conservatives were very ready for awhile to use as a watchword the
phrase, "Peace and Honor," but before long it became the occasion
of ridicule.

Parliament was called upon to appropriate £8,000,000 to defray the cost
of the Afghan and Zulu wars. When Mr. Gladstone's government retired
from office, there was a surplus of over £3,000,000, but the budgets of
1878 and 1879 both showed large deficits. The people had applauded the
"imperial policy," "the jingoism" of Lord Beaconsfield's administration
during the past two or three years, but they were not so appreciative
when they found it so costly a policy to themselves. The depression in
business also had its effect upon the country. The unpopularity of the
Liberal government, which culminated in its defeat in 1873, was now, in
1879, being shifted to their Conservative opponents, whose term of
office was fast drawing to a close.

"Mr. Gladstone's resolute and splendid hostility to Lord Beaconsfield's
whole system of foreign policy restored him to his paramount place among
English politicians. For four years--from 1876 to 1880--he sustained the
high and holy strife with an enthusiasm, a versatility, a courage and a
resourcefulness which raised the enthusiasm of his followers to the
highest pitch, and filled his guilty and baffled antagonists with a rage
which went near to frenzy. By frustrating Lord Beaconsfield's design of
going to war on behalf of Turkey, he saved England from the indelible
disgrace of a second and more gratuitous Crimea. But it was not only in
Eastern Europe that his saving influence was felt. In Africa and India,
and wherever British honor was involved, he was the resolute and
unsparing enemy of that odious system of bluster and swagger and might
against right, on which Lord Beaconsfield and his colleagues bestowed
the tawdry nickname of Imperialism."




The leadership of the Liberal party had, upon the retirement of Mr.
Gladstone, been turned over to Lord Hartington. His sympathies were upon
the right side on the Eastern question, but he was a calm, slow-moving
man. At the proper time he would have taken the right measures in
Parliament, but the temper of the Liberal party and of the people
demanded present action and emphatic speech, then Mr. Gladstone came to
the rescue, and Lord Hartington found himself pushed aside. Mr.
Gladstone was again in fact the leader of the Liberal party, whose
standard he had carried aloft during those stirring times when the
Eastern question was the all-absorbing topic of debate in Parliament and
among the people of the land. The foreign policy of Lord Beaconsfield in
1878 and 1879 found a sleepless critic in Mr. Gladstone.

The day after the Parliament of 1878 had adjourned for the Easter
recess, it was announced that the Ministry had ordered the Indian
Government to dispatch 7000 native troops to the Island of Malta. The
order occasioned much discussion--political, legal, and constitutional.
It was warmly debated. It was thought that Lord Beaconsfield had
transcended his powers and done what could be done only by a vote of
Parliament. In the House of Commons Mr. Gladstone condemned the
proceedings as unconstitutional, and pointed out the dangers of the
Ministerial policy. Lord Beaconsfield received what he calculated
upon--the support of the House. For a member to differ from his policy
was almost to incur the imputation of disloyalty to Crown and country.
Indeed, Mr. Gladstone was seriously accused of treason by a member of
the House for an article in the _Nineteenth Century_.

Mr. Gladstone undauntedly continued the contest. He addressed a meeting
of Liberals in the Drill Hall, Bermondsey, July 20th, in which he said
that the Dissolution of Parliament could not long be postponed, and
urged the union and organization of all Liberals, and prompt measures to
secure such representation as the Liberals deserved in the coming
Parliament. Speaking of the Anglo-Turkish treaty, he pointed out the
serious obligations which devolved upon England under it. He added,
regarding the Turkish Convention, that, possibly it was necessary to
sustain the credit of the country, but whether that credit should be
sustained at such a price remained for the people to determine at the
polls. He rejoiced that these most unwise, extravagant, unwarrantable,
unconstitutional and dangerous proceedings had not been the work of the
Liberal party, but he was grieved to think that any party should be
found in England to perform such transactions.

A great debate arose in the House of Commons, extending over the whole
range of the Eastern question: The Treaty of Berlin, the Anglo-Turkish
Convention, the acquisition of Cyprus, the claims of Greece, etc. It was
begun by the Marquis of Hartington, who offered a resolution regretting
the grave responsibilities the Ministry had assumed for England with no
means of securing their fulfillment, and without the previous knowledge
of Parliament. Mr. Gladstone's speech during this debate is described as
"a long and eloquent address, unsurpassable for its comprehensive grasp
of the subject, its lucidity, point, and the high tone which animated it
throughout." Mr. Gladstone denied that his strictures upon the
Government in a speech made out of Parliament could be construed as Lord
Beaconsfield had taken them as a personal attack and provocation. If
criticism of this kind is prohibited the doors of the House might as
well be shut. He observed that, "Liberty of speech is the liberty which
secures all other liberties, and the abridgment of which would render
all other liberties vain and useless possessions." In discussing the
Congress at Berlin, Mr. Gladstone said, that he could not shut his eyes
to the fact that the Sclavs, looking to Russia had been freed, while the
Greeks, looking to England, remained with all their aspirations
unsatisfied; that Russia had secured much territory and large indemnity,
with the sanction of Europe; that the English Plenipotentiaries at the
Congress, Lord Salisbury and Lord Beaconsfield, as a general rule, took
the side of servitude, and that opposed to freedom.

With regard to the English responsibilities in Asiatic Turkey put upon
England at the Convention, he called them an "unheard of," and
"mad-undertaking," accomplished "in the dark," by the present Ministry.
Dealing with the treaty-making power of the country, he claimed that it
rested with Parliament in conjunction with the Executive. The strength
and the eloquence were on the side of the opposition, but the votes were
for the Government. The resolutions of Lord Hartington were defeated,
and the "imperial policy" of the Ministry was sustained. The _Spectator_
said, that, "Reason, prudence, and patriotism have hardly ever in our
times been voted down with so little show of argument, and even of
plausible suggestion."

The next step taken by the Ministry was to undertake war with
Afghanistan, in hopes of checking the advances of Russia in that
direction and of redressing grievances. England accomplished her purpose
in part, but greatly suffered for her exploit. Mr. Gladstone could not
remain quiet under the "adventurous policy" of the Premier. He condemned
the ministerial policy which had made the Queen an Empress, then
manipulated the prerogative in a manner wholly unexampled in this age,
and employed it in inaugurating policies about which neither the nation
nor the Parliament had ever been consulted. But arguments were of no
avail. The Conservative majority in Parliament had imbibed the idea that
the honor of England had to be protected. Some thought it had never been
assailed, but Lord Beaconsfield declared it was in peril, and men and
money were voted to defend it. "So the order was given for distant
peoples to be attacked, English blood to be spilled, the burdens of the
people, already too heavy, to be swollen, and the future liabilities of
this country to be enormously increased."

In November, at the Lord Mayor's banquet, Lord Beaconsfield, speaking of
Eastern affairs, said that the Government was not afraid of any invasion
of India by its northwestern frontier; but the frontier was "haphazard
and not a scientific one," and the Government wanted a satisfactory
frontier. Mr. Gladstone, in a letter to the Bedford Liberal Association,
asked: "What right have we to annex by war, or to menace the territory
of our neighbors, in order to make 'scientific' a frontier which is
already safe?"

In the autumn of 1879 Mr. Gladstone, having resolved to retire from the
representation of Greenwich at the next election, paid a farewell visit
to his constituents. At a luncheon given by the Liberal Association he
dwelt upon the necessity of a Liberal union. The Liberals had, owing to
their dissensions, given twenty-six votes to their opponents in 1874,
while the Government had been carried on for years by a Conservative
majority of less than twenty-six, showing the importance of
organization. At night Mr. Gladstone attended a great public meeting in
the Plumstead Skating Rink. On his entrance the whole audience rose and
cheered for several minutes. An address was presented, expressing regret
at his retirement, and the pride they would ever feel at having been
associated with his name and fame. Mr. Gladstone alluded to Lord
Beaconsfield's phrase respecting "harassed interests," and said he knew
of only one harassed interest, and that was the British nation. He
protested against the words "personal government" being taken to imply
that the Sovereign desired to depart from the traditions of the
constitution, yet he charged the advisers of the Crown with having
invidiously begun a system intended to narrow the liberties of the
people of England and to reduce Parliament to the condition of the
French Parliaments before the great Revolution.

Mr. Gladstone threw the whole responsibility of the Afghan war on the
Ministry, and maintaining that England had departed from the customs of
the forefathers, concluded as follows: "It is written in the eternal
laws of the universe of God that sin shall be followed by suffering. An
unjust war is a tremendous sin. The question which you have to consider
is whether this war is just or unjust. So far as I am able to collect
the evidence, it is unjust."

In December, 1878, the following resolution was offered in the House of
Commons: "That this House disapproves the conduct of her Majesty's
Government, which has resulted in the war with Afghanistan." Mr.
Gladstone strongly condemned the war with Afghanistan and the irritating
policy towards the Ameer, and concluded his address with the following
eloquent responses to the historical and moral aspects of the Afghan
difficulty: "You have made this war in concealment from Parliament, in
reversal of the policy of every Indian and Home Government that has
existed for the last twenty-five years, in contempt of the supplication
of the Ameer and in defiance of the advice of your own agent, and all
for the sake of obtaining a scientific frontier." This powerful speech
greatly impressed, for the moment, both parties in the House, but the
vote of censure was defeated, and the policy of the administration was
endorsed. During the debate Mr. Latham made a witty comparison. He said
that the Cabinet reminded him of the gentleman, who seeing his horses
run away, and being assured by the coachman that they must drive into
something, replied, "Then smash into something cheap!"

The Ministry presented a motion that the revenues of India should be
applied for the purposes of the war. Mr. Gladstone observed that it was
the people of England who had had all the glory and all the advantage
which resulted from the destruction of the late administration, and the
accession of the present Cabinet; and hence it was the people who must
measure the _pros_ and the _cons_, and who must be content, after having
reaped such innumerable benefits, to encounter the disadvantage of
meeting charges which undoubtedly the existing government would leave
behind it as a legacy to posterity. England gained her end in the
humiliation of Russia, but there were those who felt that the result of
the English policy would further the advance of Russia in Europe, and
that force would never make friends of the Afghans.

In the sessions of 1879 the Greek question came up in the House of
Commons on a motion, "That, in the opinion of this House, tranquillity
in the East demands that satisfaction be given to the just claims of
Greece, and no satisfaction can be considered adequate that does not
ensure execution of the recommendations embodied in Protocol 13 of the
Berlin Congress." Mr. Gladstone hoped that even in the present House
there would be found those who would encourage the first legitimate
aspirations of the Hellenic races after freedom. The government had
given pledges to advance the claims of Greece that had not been redeemed
at Berlin. Not one of the European powers was now averse to the claims
of the Greek kingdom, whose successful pleadings depended wholly upon
England for favorable answer. But the government objected, and the
motion was rejected. In July, Sir Charles Dilke called the attention of
the House to the obligations of Turkey under the Treaty of Berlin, when
Mr. Gladstone again earnestly enforced the claims of "Greece, weak as
she may be, is yet strong in the principles in which she rests."

December 29, 1879, Mr. Gladstone attained the seventieth year of his
age. His friends in Liverpool, and the Greenwich Liberal Association
presented him with congratulatory addresses. The journals paid him warm
tributes for his long and eminent public services. But few thought that
the veteran that had so successfully gone through one electoral campaign
was destined in a few months to pass through another, still more
remarkable, and yet be fresh for new triumphs. In the autumn of 1879 Mr.
Gladstone resolved upon a very important, and as his enemies thought, a
hopeless step. He had retired from the representation of Greenwich, and
he now boldly decided to contest the election for Midlothian, the county
of Edinburgh. He consequently proceeded to Scotland, in November, where
such an ovation was given him as has never been accorded to any man in
modern times. During the period of three weeks he addressed meetings
numbering seventy-five thousand people, while a quarter of a million of
people, with every exhibition of good-will and admiration, took part in
some way in the demonstration in his honor. In this canvass of
delivering political speeches he performed an oratorical and
intellectual feat unparalleled in the history of any statesman who had
attained his seventieth year. Mr. Gladstone addressed large concourses
of people. When he reached Edinburgh, "his progress was as the progress
of a nation's guest, or a king returning to his own again."

Midlothian, the scene of Mr. Gladstone's astonishing exertions, was one
of the Conservative strongholds, under the dominent influence of the
Duke of Buccleuch, whose son, Lord Dalkeith, Mr. Gladstone opposed in
contesting for the representation in Parliament. Mr. Gladstone said:
"Being a man of Scotch blood, I am very much attached to Scotland, and
like even the Scottish accent," and he afterwards said, "and Scotland
showed herself equally proud of her son." He spoke at Edinburgh,
November 26th, and on the following day at Dalkeith, in the very heart
of the Duke of Buccleuch's own property to an audience of three thousand
people, mostly agriculturists. At Edinburgh he met nearly five thousand
persons at the Corn Exchange, representing more than one hundred
Scottish Liberal Associations. In the Waverley Market Mr. Gladstone
addressed more than twenty thousand people, one of the largest
congregations ever assembled in-doors in Scotland, and met with a
reception which for enthusiasm was in keeping with the vastness of the
audience. December 5th, at Glasgow, he delivered his address as Lord
Rector to the students of the University, and in the evening addressed
an immense audience of nearly six thousand in St. Andrew's Hall. He was
most enthusiastically received, and he dwelt chiefly on Cyprus, the Suez
Canal, India, and Afghanistan. "We had Afghanistan ruined," he urged,
"India not advanced, but thrown back in government, subjected to heavy
and unjust charges, subjected to what might well be termed, in
comparison with the mild government of former years, a system of
oppression; and with all this we had at home the law broken and the
rights of Parliament invaded."

On the 8th of March, 1880, the immediate dissolution of Parliament was
announced in both Houses of Parliament, and the news created intense
political excitement and activity throughout the land. In his manifesto,
in the shape of a letter to the Duke of Marlborough, the Prime Minister
referred to the attempt made to sever the constitutional tie between
Great Britain and Ireland, and said: "It is to be hoped that all men of
light and leading will resist this destructive doctrine. There are some
who challenge the expediency of the Imperial character of this realm.
Having attempted and failed to enfeeble our colonies by their policy of
decomposition, they may now perhaps recognize in the disintegration of
the United Kingdom a mode which will not only accomplish, but
precipitate, that purpose. Peace rests on the presence, not to say the
ascendency, of England in the councils of Europe."

Mr. Gladstone and Lord Hartington issued their counter-manifestoes. Mr.
Gladstone repudiated Lord Beaconsfield's dark allusion to the repeal of
the union and the abandonment of the colonies, characterizing them as
base insinuations, the real purpose of which was to hide from view the
policy pursued by the Ministry, and its effect upon the condition of
the country; and said that public distress had been aggravated by
continual shocks from neglected legislation at home, "while abroad they
had strained the prerogative by gross misuse, had weakened the Empire by
needless wars, and dishonored it in the eyes of Europe by their
clandestine acquisition of the Island of Cyprus."

Mr. Gladstone began the electoral campaign with a speech at Marylebone
on the 10th of March, in which he announced Lord Derby's secession from
the Conservative to the Liberal party; and then he left London to enter
upon his second Midlothian campaign. At various points on the journey
Mr. Gladstone stopped and addressed the people from the cars, and it is
a remarkable fact that wherever he delivered an address the Liberals
gained a seat.

The first address made by Mr. Gladstone on his own account, was
delivered on the 17th of March, in the Music Hall, Edinburgh. After
dwelling at great length upon various questions of foreign policy, he
concluded with the following references personal to his opponents and
himself: "I give them credit for patriotic motives; I give them credit
for those patriotic motives which are incessantly and gratuitously
denied to us. I believe that we are all united, gentlemen--indeed it
would be most unnatural if we were not--in a fond attachment, perhaps in
something of a proud attachment, to the great country to which
we belong."

In his final speech at West Calder Mr. Gladstone drew a powerful
indictment against the administration, and placed the issue before the
country in a strong light. Throughout all the campaign, as the time for
the general election was approaching, only one question was submitted to
the electors, "Do you approve or condemn Lord Beaconsfield's system of
foreign policy?" And the answer was given at Easter, 1880, when the
Prime Minister and his colleagues received the most empathic
condemnation which had ever been bestowed upon an English Government,
and the Liberals were returned in an overwhelming majority of fifty over
Tories and Home Rulers combined. Mr. Gladstone succeeded in ousting Lord
Dalkeith from the representation of Midlothian by a respectable
majority. He was also elected at Leeds, but this seat was afterwards
given to his son, Herbert Gladstone. At the conclusion of the election
all the journals joined in admiring the indomitable energy and vigor of
the orator, who could carry out this great enterprise when he had
already passed the age of three-score years and ten. Edinburgh was
illuminated in the evening, and everywhere were to be witnessed signs of
rejoicing at Mr. Gladstone's victory. The result of the elections
throughout the country exceeded the most sanguine expectations of the
Liberals. So large a proportion of Liberal members had not been returned
to the House of Commons since the days of the first Reform Bill.

Lord Beaconsfield, as soon as the result of the election was known, and
without waiting for the meeting of Parliament, resigned. The Queen, in
conformity with the constitutional custom, summoned Lord Hartington, the
titular leader of the Liberal party in the House of Commons, to form a
cabinet. But he could do nothing. Then the Queen sent for Lord
Granville, who with Lord Hartington, went to Windsor April 23d. They
both assured the Queen that the victory was Mr. Gladstone's; that the
people had designated him for office, and that the Liberal party would
be satisfied with no other, and that he was the inevitable Prime
Minister. They returned to London in the afternoon, sought Mr. Gladstone
at Harley Street, where he was awaiting the message they brought from
the Queen--to repair to Windsor. That evening, without an hour's delay,
he went to Windsor, kissed hands, and returned to London Prime Minister
for the second time.

Mr. Gladstone again filled the double office of Premier and Chancellor
of the Exchequer in the new cabinet, which for general ability and
debating power was one of the strongest of the century. While some of
the cabinet officers were like Mr. Gladstone himself, without title,
others were representatives of the oldest nobility of the land. At the
very beginning the new administration were confronted by perplexing
questions. The Eastern question, chiefly by Mr. Gladstone's influence,
had been settled in accordance with the dictates of humanity and
religion. But there were other difficulties to be overcome. "At home,
his administration did good and useful work, including the extension of
the suffrage to the agricultural laborers; but it was seriously, and at
length fatally, embarrassed by two controversies which sprang up with
little warning, and found the Liberal party and its leaders totally
unprepared to deal with them."

The first embarrassing question which arose when the new Parliament met
was the great deficit of nine million pounds instead of an expected
surplus in the Indian Budget, owing to the Afghan war.

Foremost among the difficulties encountered was the case of Mr. Charles
Bradlaugh, elected a member of Parliament for Northampton. He demanded
to be permitted to make a solemn affirmation or declaration of
allegiance, instead of taking the usual oath. The question created much
discussion and great feeling, and Mr. Bradlaugh's persistence was met by
violence. Mr. Bright contended for liberty of conscience. Mr. Gladstone
favored permitting Mr. Bradlaugh to affirm on his own responsibility
which was finally done, but Mr. Bradlaugh was prosecuted in the courts.
The great difficulty arose from Mr. Bradlaugh's atheism.

A considerable share of the session of 1880 was occupied in the
consideration of the Irish Compensation for Disturbance Bill and other
Irish measures. In consequence of the rapid increase of evictions by
landlords, this protective measure had become absolutely necessary in
the interests of the Irish tenants. After prolonged debate--very
prolonged for so short a bill--thirty-five lines only--the bill was
passed by the Commons, but defeated by the Lords. The result was "seen
in a ghastly record of outrage and murder which stained the
following winter."

Home Rule for Ireland, which movement was started in the "seventies,"
was gaining ground, and every election returned to the House more
members pledged to its support. Those who were bent upon obtaining Home
Rule at any cost used obstructive means against other legislation to
gain their object, but as yet the movement was confined to the members
who had been elected by Irish constituents.

About the close of the session of 1880 the heavy burdens and
responsibilities of public service borne by Mr. Gladstone began to tell
upon him. At the end of July, while returning from home for the House
of Commons, Mr. Gladstone was taken ill. He was prostrated by fever and
great fears for his recovery were entertained by his family, his party
and a host of admirers throughout the country. A great outburst of
popular sympathy was manifested and frequent messages were received from
the Queen and many foreign potentates and celebrities. Distinguished
callers and telegrams continued to arrive at Downing Street for ten days
while the patient was confined to his bed at home. The President of the
United States and the King and Queen of the Belgians were among those
who sent messages of sympathy. "Rarely indeed, if ever, has there been
witnessed such a general and spontaneous expression of the national
sympathy towards a distinguished statesman whose life had been
imperilled by illness."

Mr. Gladstone's large store of vital energy brought him safely through
his dangerous illness and on approaching convalescence he took a sea
voyage round the entire coast of England in Sir Donald Currie's steamer,
"Grantully Castle."

Three years after this voyage around England the Premier visited the
Orkneys on a similar trip, in the "Pembroke Castle," the poet laureate
being of the party on this occasion. From the Orkneys he sailed across
to Denmark and suddenly appeared at Copenhagen, where Mr. Gladstone
entertained the Czar and Czarina, the King of Greece, and the King and
Queen of Denmark, and many others of their relatives who happened to be
visiting them at that time.

A great meeting was held June 21, 1880, in Her Majesty's opera house,
for the purpose of presenting an address from the Liberals of Middlesex
to Mr. Herbert Gladstone, who had made a gallant contest in that country
at the general election. The entrance of the Premier some time after the
meeting began was the signal for an outburst of enthusiasm. Before Mr.
Gladstone appeared, the chairman, Mr. Foster, had paid a high tribute to
the Premier for his great abilities and his self-denial in the public
service. After his son had received the address, the Premier arose to
speak, when the whole audience arose to their feet and welcomed him with
immense cheering.

Mr. Gladstone referred at length to the Midlothian campaign, and paid a
tribute to the spirit and energy of the Liberals of the whole country.
The sound which went forth from Midlothian reverberated through the land
and was felt to be among the powerful operative causes which led to the
great triumph of the Liberal party.

At the Lord Mayor's banquet, November 9, 1880, Mr. Gladstone's speech
was looked forward to with much anxiety, owing to the singularly
disturbed condition of Ireland. Referring to the "party of disorder" in
Ireland, he said that as anxious as the government was to pass laws for
the improvement of the land laws, their prior duty was to so enforce the
laws as to secure order. If an increase of power was needed to secure
this, they would not fail to ask it.

In 1881, at the Lord Mayor's banquet, Mr. Gladstone said that he was
glad to discern signs of improvement in Ireland during the last twelve
months; but the struggle between the representatives of law and the
representatives of lawlessness had rendered necessary an augmentation of
the executive power.

In August, 1881, at Greenwich, the Liberals of the borough presented Mr.
Gladstone with an illustrated address and a carved oak chair as a token
of their esteem and a souvenir of his former representation of their
borough. On the cushion back of the chair were embossed in gold the arms
of Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone, with a motto "Fide et Virtute," and above, in
the midst of some wood-carving representing the rose, the thistle, the
shamrock, and the leek, was a silver plate, bearing a suitable

The Parliamentary session of 1881 was almost exclusively devoted to
Irish affairs. Instead of the contemplated Land Act, the ministry were
compelled, on account of the disturbed condition of Ireland, to bring
in first a Coercion Act, although the measure was naturally distasteful
to such friends of Ireland in the Cabinet as Mr. Gladstone and Mr.
Bright. Property and life had become very insecure, and there was a
startling increase of agrarian crime that such a measure was deemed
necessary. But while passing the Coercion Act, Mr. Gladstone accompanied
it by a great and beneficial measure--a second Irish Land Bill, which
instituted a court for the purpose of dealing with the differences
between landlord and tenant.

This bill--one of Mr. Gladstone's greatest measures--became a law August
23, 1881. Mr. Gladstone in his speech remarked that the complaint was
made that the bill was an infringement of liberty in Ireland and was
aimed at the Land League, but no person or body could be touched by the
bill unless they violated the law, and then could only be arrested upon
reasonable suspicion of crime committed or of inciting to crime or of
interfering with law or order. There would be the fullest freedom of
discussion allowed. Dealing with the Land League he said it had been
attempted to compare it with the Corn Laws, but Mr. Bright had
completely demolished that miserable argument. It was compared also to
the trade unions, but they made an onward step in the intelligence and
in the love of law and order among the working classes. They had never
tainted themselves by word or deed which would bring them into suspicion
in connection with the maintenance of law. The leaders of the Land
League were now put forward as martyrs on the same platform as
O'Connell; but on every occasion of his life-long agitation O'Connell
set himself to avoid whatever might tend to a breach of law and order.
Then Mr. Gladstone showed the necessity of the Coercion Act from the
condition of Ireland, where during the past year there had been a great
increase of crime, and the outrages were agrarian, and not connected
with the distress. It was a significant fact that the agrarian outrages
had risen and fallen with the meetings of the Land League. Nothing could
be more idle than to confound the agrarian crime of Ireland with the
ordinary crime of England, or even of Ireland. In regard to general
crime, Ireland held a high and honorable place, but how different was
the case with agrarian crime! He referred to the miscarriage of justice
in Ireland, and said that the bill, if passed, would restore to Ireland
the first conditions of Christian and civilized existence. But it "only
irritated while it failed to terrify."

Mr. Gladstone's was a great speech and showed his mastery of details,
and his power of expounding and illustrating broad and general
principles. He began his exposition by confessing that it was the most
difficult question with which he had ever been called upon to deal. He
concluded with an eloquent invocation to justice.

On the 19th of April, 1881, Lord Beaconsfield died. For many years he
and Mr. Gladstone had been at the head of their respective parties.
"Their opposition, as one critic has well and tersely put it, like that
of Pitt and Fox, was one of temperament and character as well as of
genius, position and political opinions." The Premier paid an eloquent
tribute to him and proposed a public funeral, which was declined. Mr.
Gladstone then moved for a monument in Westminster Abbey to the memory
of the deceased Earl.

In October, 1881, Mr. Gladstone made a visit to Leeds, for which borough
he was returned in 1880, but for which his son Herbert sat. He delivered
several important addresses on subjects which then absorbed the public
attention, especially dealing with the land question local government,
and Free Trade _versus_ Fair Trade. Mr. Gladstone said:

"My boyhood was spent at the mouth of the Mersey, and in those days I
used to see those beautiful American liners, the packets between New
York and Liverpool, which then conducted the bulk and the pick of the
trade between the two countries. The Americans were then deemed to be
so entirely superior to us in shipbuilding and navigation that they had
four-fifths of the whole trade between the two countries in their hands,
and that four-fifths was the best of the trade. What is the case now,
when free trade has operated and has applied its stimulus to the
intelligence of England, and when, on the other hand, the action of the
Americans has been restrained by the enactment, the enhancement and the
tightening of the protective system? The scales are exactly reversed,
and instead of America doing four-fifths and that the best, we do
four-fifths of the business, and the Americans pick up the leavings of
the British and transact the residue of the trade. Not because they are
inferior to us in anything; it would be a fatal error to suppose it; not
because they have less intelligence or less perseverance. They are your
descendants; they are your kinsmen; and they are fully equal to you in
all that goes to make human energy and power; but they are laboring
under the delusion from which you yourselves have but recently escaped,
and in which some misguided fellow-citizens seek again to entangle you.

"I am reminded that I was guilty on a certain occasion of stating in an
article--not a political article--that, in my opinion, it was far from
improbable that as the volume of the future was unrolled, America, with
its vast population and its wonderful resources, and not less with that
severe education which, from the high price of labor, America is
receiving in the strong necessity of resorting to every description of
labor-saving contrivances, and consequent development, not only on a
large scale, but down to the smallest scale of mechanical genius of the
country--on that account the day may come when that country may claim to
possess the commercial primacy of the world, I gave sad offence to many.
I at present will say this, that as long as America adheres to the
protective system your commercial primacy is secure. Nothing in the
world can wrest it from you while America continues to fetter her own
strong hands and arms, and with these fettered arms is content to
compete with you, who are free, in neutral markets. And as long as
America follows the doctrine of protection, or the doctrines now known
as those of 'fair trade,' you are perfectly safe, and you need not
allow, any of you, even your slightest slumbers to be disturbed by the
fear that America will take from you your commercial primacy."

After his return to London Mr. Gladstone received an address from the
Corporation, setting forth the long services he had rendered to the
country. Mr. Gladstone, in his reply, touched upon Irish obstruction,
and announced, incidentally, the arrest of Mr. Parnell. Mr. Parnell, the
leader of the Irish party, having openly defied the law, had been
arrested and imprisoned without trial, under the Coercion Act, passed at
the last session.

On the opening night of the Parliament, of 1882, Mr. Gladstone laid
before the House the proposed new rules of Parliamentary procedure. The
_clôture_, by a bare majority, was to be established, in order to secure
the power of closing debate by a vote of the House.

The House of Lords decided upon the appointment of a Select Committee to
inquire into the working of the Land Act, including the alleged total
collapse of the clauses relating to purchase, emigration, and arrears.
The Prime Minister in the House of Commons introduced a resolution
condemning the proposed inquiry as tending to defeat the operation of
the Land Act and as injurious to the good government of Ireland.

Early in May, 1882, the whole country was startled and terrified by the
news of the assassination of Lord Frederick Cavendish, the new chief
secretary for Ireland, and Mr. Burke under-secretary, in the Phoenix
Park, Dublin. A social revolution was raging in Ireland. Outrages and
murders had been fearfully frequent, and such brutal murders as those of
Mrs. Smythe and Mr. Herbert had filled England with terror. In the
first week of May announcement was made that Earl Cowper had resigned
the Viceroyalty. Rather than share the responsibility of releasing Mr.
Parnell, Mr. Dillon and Mr. O'Kelly, Mr. Forster left the Cabinet. Lord
Spencer was appointed to the Viceroyalty, and Lord Frederick Cavendish
succeeded Mr. Forster, and two days thereafter all England was thrilled
with sorrow and indignation by the terrible news of the assassination in
Phoenix Park. The news shattered the hopes of many concerning Ireland,
and fell with special severity upon Mr. Gladstone, because he and Lord
Cavendish enjoyed the closest friendship. The government presented a
Prevention of Crimes Bill of a very stringent character. In the course
of debate warm discussions arose over an "understanding" called, "The
Kilmainham Compact," but Mr. Gladstone successfully defended the
government in regard to its supposed negotiations with Mr. Parnell. This
bill was directed against secret societies and illegal combinations, and
it was hoped that as the Land League party had expressed its horror at
the Phoenix Park crime, and charged that it was the work of American
conspirators, they would allow the measure speedily to become law. Mr.
Bright declared that the bill would harm no innocent person, and
explained his own doctrine, that "Force is no remedy," was intended to
apply not to outrages, but to grievances. For three weeks Mr. Parnell
and his followers obstructed legislation in every conceivable way, and
were finally suspended for systematic obstruction. The obstructionists
removed, the bill was then passed, after a sitting of twenty-eight
hours. The measure was passed by the Lords July 7th, and the Queen
signed the bill July 12th. A crisis nearly arose between the Lords and
the Commons over the Irish Arrears Bill, but the Lords finally yielded.




It is our purpose next to trace the events that led to the overthrow of
the Second Administration of Mr. Gladstone, and to the formation of his
Third Cabinet. The question that seemed to begin the work of weakening
the foundations of his existing government was their policy in regard to
Egypt, which began with the occupation of Egypt in 1882.

The budget of the session of 1882 was presented by Mr. Gladstone April
24th. It was not expected that anything novel in the way of legislation
would be attempted in it. But its main interest was in this, that it
proposed a vote of credit for the Egyptian Expedition, which was to be
provided for by addition to the income-tax, making it sixpence
half-penny in the pound for the year. The financial proposals were
agreed to. In the course of the session Mr. Bright resigned his place in
the Cabinet on the ground that the intervention in Egypt was a manifest
violation of the moral law, that the Government had interfered by force
of arms in Egypt, and directed the bombardment of Alexandria. Mr.
Gladstone denied that the Ministry were at war with Egypt, and stated
that the measures taken at Alexandria were strictly measures of
self-defence. In justifying his resignation Mr. Bright said there had
been a manifest violation of the moral law; but the Premier, while
agreeing with his late colleague generally on the question of the moral
law differed from him as to this particular application of it.

The Prime Minister attended the Lord Mayor's Banquet at the Mansion
House, August 9, 1882. In replying to the toast to Her Majesty's
Ministers, after some preliminary remarks, Mr. Gladstone alluded to the
campaign in Egypt, which had been so much discussed, and said: "Let it
be well understood for what we go and for what we do not go to Egypt. We
do not go to make war on its people, but to rescue them from the
oppression of a military tyranny which at present extinguishes every
free voice and chains every man of the people of that country. We do not
go to make war on the Mohammedan religion, for it is amongst the
proudest distinctions of Christianity to establish tolerance, and we
know that wherever the British rule exists, the same respect which we
claim for the exercise of our own conscientious convictions is yielded
to the professors of every other faith on the surface of the globe. We
do not, my Lord Mayor, go to repress the growth of Egyptian liberties.
We wish them well; for we have no other interest in Egypt, which cannot
in any other way so well and so effectually attain her own prosperity as
by the enjoyment of a well regulated, and an expanding freedom."

Mr. Gladstone's confidence respecting the early termination of the war
in Egypt was somewhat justified by Sir Garnet Wolseley's victory at
Tel-el-Kebir, but the future relations of England with Egypt were still
left an open subject of discussion and speculation. Again, November 9th,
at the banquet at the Guildhall, to the Cabinet Ministers, Mr. Gladstone
spoke. He called attention to the settlement of the troubles in the East
of Europe, congratulating his hearers on the removal by the naval and
military forces of the Egyptian difficulty, and calling attention to
Ireland, compared its condition with that of the previous March and
October, 1881, showing a diminution of agrarian crime to the extent of
four-fifths. This happy result had been brought about, not by coercive
means alone, but by the exercise of remedial measures. "If the people of
Ireland were willing to walk in the ways of legality, England was
strong, and generous, and free enough to entertain in a friendly and
kindly spirit any demand which they might make."

On the 13th of December, 1882, Mr. Gladstone's political jubilee was
celebrated. Fifty years before, on that day, he had been returned to
Parliament as member for Newark. A large number of congratulatory
addresses, letters, and telegrams complimenting him on the completion of
his fifty years of parliamentary service were received by him. He had
entered the first Reformed Parliament as a conservative, had gone ever
forward in the path of reform, and was yet to lead in greater measures
of reform.

The excellent prospects regarding domestic measures with which the
session of 1883 was opened were dispelled by prolonged and fruitless
debates on measures proposed and on the address from the Queen. But Mr.
Gladstone was absent, the state of his health requiring him to pass
several weeks at Cannes. He returned home in March greatly invigorated,
and at once threw himself with wonted ardour into the parliamentary
conflict. Mr. Parnell offered a bill to amend the Irish Land Act of
1887, which was opposed by the Premier and lost.

An affirmation bill was introduced at this session by the Government,
which provided that members who objected to taking the oath might have
the privilege of affirming. The opposition spoke of the measure as a
"Bradlaugh Relief Bill." Its rejection was moved, and in its defense
Mr. Gladstone made one of his best speeches, which was warmly applauded.
He said: "I must painfully record my opinion, that grave injury has been
done to religion in many minds--not in instructed minds, but in those
which are ill-instructed or partially instructed--in consequence of
things which ought never to have occurred. Great mischief has been done
in many minds by a resistance offered to the man elected by the
constituency of Northampton, which a portion of the people believe to be
unjust. When they see the profession of religion and the interests of
religion, ostensibly associated with what they are deeply convinced is
injustice, it leads to questions about religion itself, which commonly
end in impairing those convictions, and that belief, the loss of which I
believe to be the most inexpressible calamity which can fall either upon
a man or upon a nation." But the measure was lost.

During the session of 1883 the Bankruptcy Bill and the Patents Bill were
both passed, and effected reforms which had long been felt to be
necessary. The Corrupt Practices Act was designed to remove from British
parliamentary and borough elections the stigma which attached to them in
so many parts of the country. The Government was checked, however, in
its policy in the Transvaal, and Mr. Childers' action in regard to the
Suez Canal.

Mr. Gladstone attended, in March, the celebration of the inauguration
of the National Liberal party, predicting for it a useful and brilliant
future, if it remained faithful to its time-honored principles and

Sir Stafford Northcote, in the session of 1884, moved a vote of censure,
and vigorously attacked the Egyptian policy of the administration. Mr.
Gladstone defended the ministerial action with spirit and effect. He
declared that the Government had found, and not made, the situation in
Egypt and the Soudan. The Prime Minister "traced all the mischief to
Lord Salisbury's dual control. Though the motive and object had been to
secure a better government for Egypt, a great error had been committed.
The British Government had fulfilled all the obligations imposed upon
them, and they were acting for the benefit of the civilized world.
Reforms had been effected in the judicature, legislature, police, and
military organizations of Egypt; and they were resolved to see all the
vital points recommended carried out by the Khedive's Government. As to
the war in the Soudan, it was hateful to the people of Egypt; and
England declined to have anything to do with the reconquest of the
Soudan.... General Gordon, whom Mr. Gladstone characterized as a hero
and a genius, had been despatched to Khartoum for the purpose of
withdrawing, if possible, in safety the 29,000 soldiers of the Khedive
scattered over the Soudan. The General's mission was not the reconquest
of the Soudan, but its peaceful evacuation, and the reconstruction of
the country, by giving back to the Sultan the ancestral power which had
been suspended during the Egyptian occupation. The Government had to
consider in any steps which they took the danger of thwarting Gordon's
peaceful mission and endangering his life." Mr. Gladstone said that the
policy of the Government was to "rescue and retire." Sir S. Northcote's
resolution was rejected by 311 to 292 votes, showing the growing
strength of the Opposition.

The pacific mission of General Gordon to Khartoum having failed, there
was great solicitude felt for that gallant soldier's welfare and safety.
Sir M. Hicks-Beach offered another vote of censure, complaining of the
dilatory conduct of the Government for not taking steps to secure the
safety of General Gordon. Mr. Gladstone, in reply, admitted the
obligations of the Government to General Gordon, and stated that on
reasonable proof of danger he would be assisted. "The nation would never
grudge adequate efforts for the protection of its agents, but it was the
duty of the Government to consider the treasure, the blood, and the
honor of the country, together with the circumstances of the time, the
season, the climate, and the military difficulties. Conscious of what
their obligations were, they would continue to use their best endeavours
to fulfil them, unmoved by the threats and the captious criticisms of
the Opposition." The proposed censure was defeated.

A conference of European powers was held on Egyptian affairs, but was
abortive; and Mr. Gladstone while announcing that he wished to get out
of Egypt as soon as circumstances would allow, admitted that
institutions, however good, were not likely to survive the withdrawal of
our troops. Lord Northbrook was next despatched by the government on a
mission to Egypt, with the object of rescuing her from her financial
embarrassments, and averting the impending dangers of a national

In February, 1884, Mr. Gladstone introduced the Government Franchise
Bill in the House of Commons. It was a great measure and proposed to
complete the work of parliamentary reform by conferring the suffrage
upon every person in the United Kingdom who was the head of a household.
Mr. Gladstone said that the results of the bill would be to add to the
English constituency upwards of 1,300,000 voters; to the Scotch
constituency over 200,000 voters; and to the Irish constituency over
400,000 voters; which would add to the aggregate constituency of the
United Kingdom, which was then 3,000,000 voters, 2,000,000 more, or
nearly twice as many as were added in 1832. The Premier appealed for
union on this great reform, and observed: "Let us hold firmly together,
and success will crown our efforts. You will, as much as any former
Parliament that has conferred great legislative benefits on the nation,
have your reward, and read your history in a nation's eyes; for you will
have deserved all the benefits you will have conferred. You will have
made a strong nation stronger still--stronger in union without, and
stronger against its foes (if and when it has any foes) within; stronger
in union between class and class, and in rallying all classes and
portions of the community in one solid compact mass round the ancient
Throne which it has loved so well, and round the Constitution, now to be
more than ever free and more than ever powerful."

The measure was warmly debated. Besides this opposition there were,
outside of the House, ominous utterances threatening the rejection of
the scheme. Mr. Gladstone, referring to these hostile murmurings, said
that hitherto the attitude of the government had been, in Shakespeare's
words, "Beware of entrance to a quarrel; but, being in, bear it, that
the opposer may beware of thee." He deprecated a quarrel and declared
that the government had done everything to prevent a collision between
the two Houses of Parliament on this question, which would open up a
prospect more serious than any he remembered since the first
Reform Bill.

The House of Lords passed a resolution to the effect that the Lords
would not concur in any measure of reform without having the complete
bill before them, including the redistribution and registration, as well
as an extension of the suffrage. The Premier promised to introduce a
Redistribution Bill in the following session, but Lord Salisbury, since
the death of Lord Beaconsfield, the leader of the Conservative party,
declined to discuss the Redistribution Bill, "with a rope around his
neck," by which he meant a franchise act under which his party must
appeal to the country. Negotiations followed between the Liberal and
Conservative leaders with fruitless results, and the House of Lords
finally passed a resolution that it would be desirable for Parliament to
have an autumn session, to consider the Representation of the People
Bill, in connection with the Redistribution Bill, which the government
had brought before Parliament.

Public meetings were held at various places throughout the country, and
the question of the enlargement of the franchise discussed. The policy
of the Tories was strongly condemned at many large and influential
public gatherings. In August Mr. Gladstone visited Midlothian and
delivered a powerful address in the Edinburgh Corn Exchange. He
explained that the special purpose for which he appeared before his
constituents was to promote, by every legitimate means in his power, the
speedy passage of the Franchise Bill. "The unfortunate rejection of the
measure," he observed, "had already drawn in its train other questions
of the gravest kind, and the vast proportion of the people would soon be
asking whether an organic change was not required in the House of Lords.
He, however, did not believe that the House of Lords had as yet placed
itself in a position of irretrievable error. He believed that it was
possible for it to go back, and to go back with dignity and honor."

With regard to the foreign policy of the Government, which had been
attacked and compared unfavorably with the Midlothian programme of 1879,
Mr. Gladstone defended it with spirit. He expressed his satisfaction
with the expansion of Germany abroad, and reviewed the policy of the
Government in Eastern Europe, Afghanistan, India and South Africa. As to
the Transvaal, he contended that "they were strong and could afford to
be merciful," and that it was not possible without the grossest and most
shameful breach of faith to persist in holding the Boers to annexation,
"when we had pledged ourselves beforehand that they should not be
annexed except with their own good will." In reply to the oft-repeated
question, "What took you to Egypt?" the Premier said: "Honor and
plighted faith." The covenants they were keeping were those entered into
by their Tory predecessors, and most unfortunate and most unwise he
considered them to be. The Government had respected the sovereignty of
the Porte and the title of the European Powers to be concerned in all
matters territorially affecting the Turkish Empire; they had discouraged
the spirit of aggression as well as they could, and had contracted no
embarrassing engagements. Great improvements had been introduced in the
administration of Egypt, but he regretted the total failure of the late
Conference of the Powers to solve the problem of Egyptian finance. With
regard to General Gordon the Government were considering the best means
to be adopted for fulfilling their obligations.

Parliament met in October, 1884. The Franchise Bill was introduced and
sent to the House of Lords, and the Redistribution Bill, upon which a
compromise with the Conservatives had been reached, was presented in the
House of Commons. The measure, as altered, proposed to disfranchise all
boroughs with a population under 15,000, to give only one member to
towns with a population between 15,000 and 50,000, and to take one
member each from the counties of Rutland and Hereford. By this
arrangement one hundred and sixty seats would be "extinguished," which,
with the six seats extinguished before, would be revived and distributed
as follows: "Eight new boroughs would be created, the representation of
London, Liverpool, and other large cities and towns would be greatly
increased, while in dealing with the remainder of the seats
unappropriated, the Government would apply equal electoral areas
throughout the country." The Franchise Bill--a truly democratic
bill---was carried through both Houses, and became a law. The
Redistribution Bill was carried, January, 1885, after animated debate.
Registration measures were also passed for England, Scotland and
Ireland, which received the royal assent May 21st.

January, 1885, Mr. Gladstone wrote a kindly, serious, yet courtly letter
of congratulation to Prince Albert Victor, eldest son of the Prince of
Wales and heir presumptive to the Crown, on the attainment of
his majority.

In the hour of triumph the government was doomed to receive a stunning
blow. The news of the fall of Khartoum and the untimely death of General
Gordon sent a thrill of horror and indignation throughout England. The
government was seriously condemned for its procrastination in not
sending timely relief, for the rescue of the imperiled English. But when
the facts became fully known it was found that no blame could be
attached to Mr. Gladstone, who was himself strongly moved by the death
of General Gordon, whose work and character he highly esteemed. The
Prime Minister was, however, equal to the emergency, and announced that
it was necessary to overthrow the Mahdi at Khartoum, to renew operations
against Osman Digna, and to construct a railway from Suakin to Berber
with a view to a campaign in the fall. The reserves were called out by
royal proclamation.

However, these measures met with opposition. Sir Stafford Northcote
brought forward a motion affirming that the risks and sacrifices which
the government appeared to be ready to encounter could only be justified
by a distinct recognition of England's responsibility for Egypt, and
those portions of the Soudan which were necessary to its security. An
amendment was proposed by Mr. John Morley, but regretting its decision
to continue the conflict with the Mahdi. Mr. Gladstone replied forcibly
to both motion and amendment, and appealed to the Liberal party to
sustain the administration and its policy by an unmistakable vote of
confidence. The government was sustained.

The Great Powers of Europe, in convention for the settlement of the
finances of Egypt, had concluded that it would require a loan of
£9,000,000 to save Egypt from bankruptcy. This loan was to be issued on
an international guarantee, with an international inquiry at the end of
two years into the success of the scheme. This plan of adjustment was
agreed to by the House. A short time after this settlement Mr. Gladstone
announced a vote of credit to provide against any danger from Russian
action, stated that no farther operations would be undertaken either on
the Nile or near Suakin, and that General Graham's campaign would be
abandoned, as well as the construction of the new railway.

Great excitement was created in England by the announcement of the
advance of the Russians on the Indian frontier. March 13th Mr. Gladstone
stated in the House that as the protests formerly made against the
advance of Russia had been allowed to lapse, it had been agreed that
pending the delineation of the frontier there should be no further
advance on either side. In April, however, a conflict occurred between
the Russians and the Afghans, which seemed to indicate that General
Komaroff had committed an act of unprovoked aggression on the Ameer. Mr.
Gladstone moved a vote of credit on the 27th in a speech, whose
eloquence and energy greatly stirred both sides of the House. Happily,
the difficulty with Russia was adjusted by conceding Pendjeh to Russia
in consideration of the surrender of Zulfiker to the Ameer.

The administration of Mr. Gladstone, which had weathered through many
storms, was destined to fall in a wholly unexpected way. When the budget
for 1885 was produced there was a deficit of upwards of a million
pounds, besides the depressed revenue and an estimated expenditure for
the current year of not less than £100,000,000. Mr. Childers, the
Chancellor of the Exchequer, proposed to make the taxation upon land
proportionate to that on personal property, and to augment the duties on
spirits and beer. But various interests were antagonized, and opposition
was aroused. The country members demanded that no new taxes be put on
the land until the promised relief of local taxation had been granted.
The agricultural and liquor interests were discontented, as well as the
Scotch and Irish members, with the whisky duty. Concessions were made,
but they failed to reconcile the opposition. A hostile motion was
offered by Sir M. Hicks-Beach, and Mr. Gladstone declared that the
Cabinet would resign if defeated. Many Liberals were absent when the
vote was taken, regarding a majority for the Ministry as certain, but
the amendment was carried June 9th by a vote of 264 to 252, and the
Premier and his colleagues resigned. The Liberals were desirous of
passing a vote of confidence in the administration, but Mr. Gladstone
deprecated this, as he felt the situation to be intolerable, and was
desirous of being relieved from the responsibility of office.
Misfortunes, both in reference to affairs at home and abroad, had fallen
heavily upon the Government, for many of which they were not
responsible, and the Cabinet had been held together chiefly by the
masterly personality of the Premier. Hence it was not without a feeling
of personal satisfaction that Mr. Gladstone transferred the seats of
office to his successor, Lord Salisbury. On his retirement from office
the Queen offered an Earldom to Mr. Gladstone, which he declined. Its
acceptance would have meant burial in the House of Lords, and an end to
his progressive action.

The events that led to the third administration of Mr. Gladstone will
next engage our attention.

The first general election under the New Reform Act was held in
November, 1885. Mr. Gladstone again appealed to his constituents, and,
although nearly seventy-six years of age, spoke with an energy and force
far beyond all his contemporaries. His attitude on the question of
Dis-establishment drew back many wavering Scotch votes. He discussed the
Scotch question at Edinburgh, and said there was no fear of change so
long as England dealt liberally, equitably, and prudently with Ireland,
but demands must be subject to the condition that the unity of the
empire, and all the powers of the Imperial Parliament for maintaining
that authority, must be preserved.

In another address he stated his conviction, that the day had not come
when the Dis-establishment of the Church in Scotland should be made a
test question. The question pressing for settlement by the next
Parliament was land reform, local government, parliamentary procedure,
and the imperial relations between Ireland and England; and every
sensible man would admit that it was right to direct attention to them
rather than to a matter impossible of immediate solution.

At West Calder Mr. Gladstone made an address, in which he "approved Lord
Salisbury's action with regard to Servia, complained of the ministerial
condemnation of Lord Ripon's Indian administration, ridiculed the idea
of benefit resulting from a Royal Commission on trade depression, warned
the electors against remedies which were really worse than the disease,
and defended Free-Trade principles. He furthur advocated comprehensive
land reforms, including free transfer, facility of registration, and the
uprooting of mortmain."


Mr. Gladstone was returned again for Midlothian by an overwhelming
majority. The elections resulted in the return of 333 Liberals, 249
Conservatives, 86 Parnellites, and 2 Independents. The Liberals thus
secured a substantial triumph. The agricultural districts were faithful
to the Liberals, but they lost in the boroughs. The clergy and the
publicans, and the Parnellites were found "arrayed" in "scandalous
alliance" against the Liberal cause. The Liberal party was just short of
the numbers required to defeat the combined forces of Tories and
Parnellites. Lord Salisbury was retained in office, but the
Conservatives were disunited, and the life of his administration hung by
a thread. The Liberals were strong, hopeful, and united. In Mr.
Chamberlain they had a popular champion of great ability and industry.

December 17, 1885 England was astonished by the appearance of an
anonymous paragraph in the _Times_, affirming that, if Mr. Gladstone
returned to power, he would deal with a liberal hand with the demands of
Home Rule. The author of the paragraph has never been clearly
ascertained, but the atmosphere of mystery with which it was surrounded
was not regarded as becoming, either to such an important policy or to
the personal dignity of the illustrious statesman. A storm of questions,
contradictions, explanations, enthusiasms, and jeremiads followed its
appearance. Mr. Gladstone would neither affirm nor deny, but held his
peace. The question, he said, was one for a responsible Ministry alone
to handle. There was great uncertainty. It was, however, plain that if
Mr. Gladstone should favor Home Rule, the Parnellites would support him,
and the Tories must leave office. But only twelve months before Lord
Shaftesbury wrote: "In a year or so we shall have Home Rule disposed of
(at all hazards), to save us from daily and hourly bores."

The Parliament of 1886 had scarcely opened before the Salisbury
government was defeated upon an amendment to the Queen's address,
affirming the necessity for affording facilities to agricultural
laborers to obtain allotments and small holdings. Some of the leading
Liberals opposed the amendment, but Mr. Gladstone earnestly favored it,
as a recognition of the evils arising from the divorce of so large a
proportion of the population from the land. The Irish and the Liberals
coalesced, and the Government was placed in a minority of seventy-nine,
and Lord Salisbury immediately resigned.

Late at night, January 29, 1886, Sir Henry Ponsonby arrived at Mr.
Gladstone's residence with a summons from the Queen for him to repair to
her at Osborne. On the 1st of February Mr. Gladstone "kissed hands," and
became for the third time Prime Minister of England. The new Premier was
forced to face unusual difficulties, but he finally came to the
conclusion that it was impossible to deal with the Irish question upon
the old stereotyped lines. He was resolved to treat this subject upon
large and generous principles. Accordingly, on the 8th of April, Mr.
Gladstone, in the presence of a crowded House, brought forward his Home
Rule Bill--his bill for the government of Ireland. With certain imperial
reservations and safeguards the bill gave to Ireland what she had long
demanded--the right to make her own laws. The interest in the expected
legislation was so great that members began to arrive at half-past five
in the morning, while sixty of them were so eager to secure seats that
they breakfasted at Westminster.

Mr. Gladstone's new measure was not only opposed by the Conservatives,
but it alienated from the Premier some of the most influential of the
Liberal party. Among the Liberals who opposed the measure were those who
had been the colleagues of Mr. Gladstone only the June before in the
Cabinet--Lord Hartington, Lord Shilborne, Lord Northbrook, Lord Derby
and Lord Carlingford. Mr. Gladstone's forces, however, were reinforced
by Mr. Morley, Lord Herschell and others. May 10th, Mr. Gladstone denied
that he had ever declared Home Rule for Ireland incompatible with
Imperial unity. It was a remedy for social disorder. The policy of the
opposition was coercion, while that of the government was autonomy.

On the 18th of April the Premier presented the Irish Land Purchase Bill,
for the buying out of the Irish landlords, which was intended to come
into operation on the same day as the Home Rule Bill. The object of this
measure was to give to all Irish landowners the option of being bought
out on the terms of the Act, and opening towards the exercise of that
option where their rent was from agricultural land. The State authority
was to be the purchaser, and the occupier was to be the proprietor. The
nominal purchase price was fixed at twenty years' purchase of the net
rental, ascertained by deducting law charges, bad debts, and cost of
management from judicial rent. Where there was no judicial rental the
Land Court could, if it chose, make use of Griffiths' valuation for
coming to a fair decision. To meet the demand for the means of purchase
thus established, Mr. Gladstone proposed to create £50,000,000 three per
cents. The repayment of advances would be secured by a Receiver General,
appointed by and acting upon British authority.

The Land Purchase Bill was also opposed. It was the final cause which
led to the retirement from the government of Mr. Chamberlain, "the able
and enterprising exponent of the new Radicalism." He was soon followed
by Sir George Trevelyan, "who combined the most dignified traditions,
social and literary, of the Whig party with a fervent and stable
Liberalism which the vicissitudes of twenty years had constantly tried
and never found wanting." Mr. Bright also arrayed himself in opposition
to the government, and accused Mr. Gladstone of successfully concealing
his thoughts upon the Irish question in November. Mr. Gladstone replied
that the position of Ireland had changed since 1881.

The debate extended over many nights, and the opposition to the Irish
bills of so many Liberal leaders in every constituency, soon led to
disaffection among the people. What was lost in some districts, however,
was to some extent made up, says an English writer, by "the support of
that very broken reed, the Irish vote, which was destined to pierce the
hand of so many a confiding candidate who leaned upon it." While this
debate was in progress a bill directed against the carrying of arms in
Ireland was introduced and pushed forward rapidly through both Houses,
and became a law.

Mr. Gladstone explained the position of the Cabinet on the Home Rule and
Land Bills at a meeting of Liberals held at the Foreign Office, May
27th. He stated that the Government at present only asked for an
endorsement of the leading principles of the two measures; and in
closing the debate afterwards on the second reading of the Home Rule
Bill, in the House of Commons, he made an eloquent appeal for Ireland.
But all parties were preparing for the conflict, and members of opposite
parties were consolidating themselves for opposition. "The Whigs, under
Lord Hartington, coalesced with the Radicals, under Mr. Chamberlain, and
both together made a working alliance with the Tories. This alliance was
admirably organized in London and in the constituencies."

It seems that the Premier was deceived by his official counsellors of
the Liberal party as to the real condition of affairs respecting Home
Rule and the prospects for the passage of his bills. He did not dream of
defeat, but if by some mischance they would suffer defeat, then he could
appeal to the country with the certainty of being sustained by the
popular vote. This was what Mr. Gladstone hoped, and what he thought he
had the assurance of. But hopes of success began to give way to fears of
defeat as the time drew near to take the vote. However, some still
hopeful prophesied a small majority against the bill--only ten votes at
the most. The Cabinet desperately resolved not to resign if beaten by so
small a majority, but would have some adherent move a vote of
confidence. This they argued would be favored by some opposed to Home
Rule, and the question be deferred to another session, leaving the
Liberals still in office. But these hopes were doomed to be blasted.
Early in the morning of June 8th the momentous division took place, and
it was found that the Government, instead of getting a majority, was
defeated by thirty votes. It was found that ninety-three Liberals had
voted with the majority.

The Premier at once advised the Queen to dissolve Parliament, and though
Her Majesty at first demurred at the trouble of another election within
seven months of the last, and begged Mr. Gladstone to reconsider his
counsel, yet he argued that a general election would cause less trouble
than a year of embittered and fanatical agitation against Home Rule.
Besides, as he said to a colleague, "If we did not dissolve we would be
showing the white feather." Mr. Gladstone finally had his way, the Queen
yielded and Parliament was dissolved June 26, 1886. June 14th Mr.
Gladstone issued an address to the electors of Midlothian, and later
paid a visit to Edinburgh and Glasgow, where he made powerful addresses.
He then spoke at Manchester, and, passing on to Liverpool, he advocated
the cause of Ireland, calling upon the people to "ring out the old, ring
in the new," and to make Ireland not an enemy but a friend.

The result of this appeal to the country was the return of a decided
majority of over a hundred against Home Rule, and thus, after a short
term of five months in office, the third administration of Mr. Gladstone
was brought to a close, and he became again the leader of the
Opposition. The dissolution and appeal to the country was a practical
blunder, but Mr. Gladstone's address to the people was skilfully worded.
He freely admitted that the Irish bills were dead, and asked the
constituencies simply to sanction a principle, and that, too, a very
plain and reasonable one in itself. He invited the people to vote aye or
no to this question: "Whether you will or will not have regard to the
prayer of Ireland for the management by herself of the affairs
specifically and exclusively her own?" The separation of the bare
principle of self-government from the practical difficulties presented
by the bills enabled many Liberals who were opposed to the measures to
support Mr. Gladstone, but the majority of voters failed to make this
distinction, and hence came defeat. The decision of the people was not
regarded as final.

In 1887 the Jubilee of the Queen was celebrated. Fifty years before
Queen Victoria had ascended the throne of England. Mr. and Mrs.
Gladstone celebrated the Queen's Jubilee by giving a treat to all the
inhabitants of the estates of Hawarden, who were of the Queen's age,
which was sixty-eight and upwards. The treat took the shape of a dinner
and tea, served in a large tent erected in front of the castle, and the
guests numbered upwards of two hundred and fifty. The principal toast,
proposed by Mr. Gladstone, was the Queen. He contrasted the jubilee then
being celebrated all over the English-speaking world, with that of
George the Third, which was "a jubilee of the great folks, a jubilee of
corporations and of authorities, a jubilee of the upper classes." On the
other hand, he continued, the Victorian Jubilee was one when "the
population are better fed, better clothed, and better housed--and by a
great deal--than they were fifty years ago, and the great mass of these
happy and blessed changes is associated with the name and action of
the Queen."

In the year of the Queen's Jubilee, 1887, Mr. Gladstone addressed many
gatherings, and at Swansea, where he was the guest of Sir Hussey Vivian,
he spoke to a vast concourse of people, estimated at one
hundred thousand.



When Parliament met in 1887 Mr. Gladstone entered upon "a course of
extraordinary physical and intellectual efforts, with voice and pen, in
Parliament and on the platform, on behalf of the cause, defeated but not
abandoned, of self-government for Ireland." The Tory administration
passed a Crimes Prevention Bill for Ireland of great severity. Irish
members of Parliament were thrown into prison, but the Act failed of its
object--the suppression of the Land League.

In December, 1887, Mr. Gladstone visited Italy and made Naples his
headquarters. He was received with joy for the service he had rendered
to the Italian people. The University of Bologna, in celebrating the
eighth century of its existence, conferred upon him the degree of
Doctor of Arts.

In 1888 the House of Commons appointed a Commission to try the "Times"
charges against Mr. Parnell. The charges were found to be false.

Mr. Gladstone visited Birmingham in November, 1888. After paying a
glowing tribute to John Bright, and expressing an earnest desire for his
recovery to health, he condemned the Coercion Act. Mr. Gladstone
received many handsome presents from the workingmen, and Mrs. Gladstone
received from the ladies a medallion cameo portrait of her husband. A
great demonstration was made at Bingley Hall, in which were gathered
over 20,000 persons.

A number of Liberals, who had deserted Mr. Gladstone, returned upon the
promise of certain imperial guarantees which were granted, among them
Sir George Trevelyan. Mr. Chamberlain, who had asked for these
safeguards, did not accept them.

July 25, 1889, Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone celebrated their "Golden Wedding."
Among the many to offer congratulations were the Queen by telegram, and
the Prince of Wales by letter. A pleasant surprise met them at home. A
portrait of Mr. Gladstone, by Sir John Millais, was found hanging in the
breakfast-room, "A gift from English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish Women."

In 1890 trouble came to the Liberal party through the scandal connecting
the names of Mr. Parnell and Mrs. O'Shea. Mr. Gladstone announced that
the Irish party must choose between himself and Mr. Parnell. In
November, 1890, Mr. Parnell was deposed from the chairmanship of the
United Irish National Party. This led to a division. Mr. Justin McCarthy
was elected leader by the Anti-Parnellites, and the Parnellites
selected Mr. John Redmond.

Parliament would soon terminate by limitation, so Mr. Gladstone devoted
himself to preparing the people for the coming general election.
Besides, in February, 1891, he made an address, at the opening of St.
Martin's Free Public Library, and in March to the boys at Eton College
on Homeric Studies. June 28, 1892, Parliament came to an end. Mr.
Gladstone's journey to Edinburgh, in July, was all along the route "a
triumphal progress." He was re-elected. The question of the day was Home
Rule, and wherever the people had the opportunity of declaring
themselves, they pronounced condemnation upon the policy of Lord
Salisbury's administration, and in favor of Home Rule for Ireland.

The new Parliament met, and, August 12, 1892, a motion was made of "No
Confidence" in the Salisbury government. The division was the largest
ever taken in the House of Commons, the vote being 350 for the motion
and 310 against it--a majority of 40 for Mr. Gladstone. The scene in
the House which attended the overthrow of the Salisbury government was
less dramatic than that which accompanied the defeat of the Gladstone
ministry in 1885, but it was full of exciting episodes. The House was
packed to the doors. The excitement was intense, and the confusion
great. When the figures were announced, another wild scene of disorder
prevailed and there was prolonged cheering. "Ten minutes later the great
forum was empty and the excited assembly had found its way to the quiet
outside under the stars."

Monday, August 15, 1892, Mr. Gladstone repaired to Osborne on the Royal
Yacht, and became for the fourth time Prime Minister. Since 1868 he had
been the undisputed leader of his party. His main supporters in all his
reform measures were the Nonconformists, whose claim for "the absolute
religious equality of all denominations before the law of the land,"
must, in time, it was thought, bring about the disestablishment of the
Episcopal Church.

In September, 1892, Mr. Gladstone went to Sir E. Watkin's _Chalet_ on
Mount Snowdon, Wales, where he made his Boulder Stone speech. To
commemorate his visit a slab of gray Aberdeen granite was "let into the
actual brown rock," on which is the following inscription in Welsh and
in English: "September 13, 1892. Upon this rock the Right Honorable
W.E. Gladstone, M.P., when Prime Minister for the fourth time, and
eighty-three years old, addressed the people of Eryi upon justice to
Wales. The multitude sang Cymric hymns and 'The Land of My Fathers.'"

December 29, 1892, Mr. Gladstone celebrated his eighty-third birthday.
Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone were at Biarritz. Congratulatory telegrams and
messages were received in great numbers, besides many handsome presents.
The event was celebrated all over England. The Midlothian Liberals sent
congratulations upon the return of the Liberal Party to power under his
leadership, and the completion of his sixty years' service in the House.
Resolutions were passed deploring the wickedness of the dynamite outrage
at Dublin, December 24, and yet avowing the justice of granting to
Ireland the right to manage her own affairs.

January 31, 1893, Parliament was opened. In the House of Commons there
was a brilliant gathering, and nearly all the members were present, many
of them standing. Just before noon the Hon. Arthur Wellesley Peel,
Speaker, took his seat, and Archdeacon Farrar, Chaplain, offered prayer.
When Mr. Gladstone entered from behind the Speaker's chair, every
Liberal and Irish Nationalist stood up and greeted him with prolonged
and enthusiastic cheers; and when he took the oath as Prime Minister,
he received another ovation. The members were then summoned to the House
of Lords to hear the Queen's speech, which was read by the Lord High
Chancellor, Baron Herschall. The Prince of Wales and his son, the Duke
of York, occupied seats on the "cross bench."

February 13, the excitement in and about the Parliament Houses was as
great as that which prevailed two weeks before. Enthusiastic crowds
greeted Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone. When the doors of the House of Commons
were opened, there was a "disorderly rush" of the members into the House
to obtain seats, "the members shouting and struggling, several being
thrown to the floor in the excitement." Peers, Commons, and visitors
filled the floor and galleries. The Prince of Wales and other members of
the royal family were present. When Mr. Gladstone arose he was greeted
with applause. He reminded the House that for seven years the voices
which used to plead the cause of Irish government in Irish affairs had
been mute within the walls of the House. He then asked permission to
introduce a "Bill to Amend the Provision for the Government of Ireland,"
which was the title of the Home Rule Bill. Mr. Balfour led the
opposition to the bill. Mr. Chamberlain declared that the bill would not
accomplish its purpose, whereupon Mr. Justin McCarthy, for the
anti-Parnellities, replied that the Irish would accept it as a message
of everlasting peace, and Mr. John Redmond, for the Parnellites,
answered that if disturbances followed in Ireland it would be due to the

The Ulster Unionists opposed the bill. The Scotch-Irish Protestants of
the north of Ireland declared that they preferred to stand where they
did in 1690, when they defeated James II and his Catholic followers, in
the battle of the Boyne, and fought for William of Orange for the
English throne and liberty and Protestantism. Their opposition to Home
Rule for Ireland grew out of their hostility to Roman Catholicism and
the fear of its supremacy.

After six months of earnest debate in the House of Commons, the Home
Rule Bill for Ireland was passed, with slight amendments, September 1,
1893, by a vote of 301 to 267, a majority of thirty-four, The struggle
was perhaps the most heated in the history of Parliament.

The bill was sent to the House of Lords, where it was defeated,
midnight, September 8, by the surprising majority of 419 to 41, after
only one week's discussion. Members that never attended were drummed up
to vote against the bill. The usual working force of the House of Lords
is from thirty to forty members. The vote was the largest ever taken in
the Lords.

At once the cry, "Down with, the House of Lords!" was heard. The
National Liberal Federation issued a circular, in which were the words:
"The question of mending or ending the House of Lords ... displaces for
awhile all other subjects of reform." Mr. Gladstone was probably aware
of the contents of this manifesto before it was issued, and the
sentiments were in accord with those uttered by him two years before at
New Castle.

September 27th, Mr. Gladstone addressed his constituents at Edinburgh.
He was received with an outburst of enthusiasm. He said that the
People's Chamber had passed the bill. If the nation was determined it
would not be baffled by the Peers. If the Commons should go before the
country, then the Lords should go too, and if defeated, should do what
the Commons would do--clear out.

The Queen wanted Mr. Gladstone to appeal to the country, and there was
an opinion among some that Mr. Gladstone would be defeated at the polls
upon the question; but the Premier intimated to the Queen his intention
not to appeal, and announced the readiness of the Cabinet to be
dismissed by the Queen. However, the Queen would hardly expose the
throne to the danger threatening the Peers.

December 29, 1893, Mr. Gladstone attained the eighty-fourth year of his
age. When he entered the House of Commons that day his political
associates of the Liberal party all rose anta greeted him with cheers.
When the applause had subsided, the Conservatives raised their hats and
their leader, Mr. Balfour, rose and tendered his congratulations. Mr.
Gladstone was much pleased with the demonstrations of his friends, as
well as with the graceful compliments of his political opponents.
Besides about two hundred congratulatory messages, letters and telegrams
were received, those from Queen Victoria, and the Prince and Princess of
Wales, being among the first.

July 6, 1893, Prince George of Wales, Duke of York, and Princess Mary of
Teck were married. The Prince was by inheritance heir, after the Prince
of Wales, to the throne of England. Mr. Gladstone attended the wedding,
arrayed in the blue and gold uniform of a brother of the Trinity House,
with naval epaulettes, and was conducted to the royal pew reserved
for him.


Among the great measures proposed at this time by Mr. Gladstone were the
Employers' Liability, and the Parish Councils Bills. The latter was as
evolutionary and as revolutionary as the Home Rule Bill. Its object was
to take the control of 10,000 rural English parishes out of the hands of
the squire and the parson and put it into the hands of the people. With
its amendments regarding woman suffrage, to which Mr. Gladstone was
opposed, it gave to every man and woman in England one vote--and only
one--in local affairs. February 21, 1894, when Mr. Gladstone had
returned from Biarritz, where he had gone for his health, there was
again a notable assemblage in the House of Commons to hear him speak. It
was expected that he would make a bitter attack upon the House of Lords,
which had attempted to defeat both these bills by amendments. But he
calmly spoke of the lamentable divergence between the two branches of
the legislature upon the Employers' Liability Bill, and asked that the
amendment be rejected, which was done by a majority of 225 to 6. The
bill was therefore withdrawn, and the responsibility of its defeat
thrown upon the Lords. The House also rejected all the important
amendments of the Parish Councils Bill, but concurred in the unimportant
changes made by the Lords. It was sent back then to the lords, and
finally passed by them. But Mr. Gladstone greatly disappointed many of
his political friends by his mild manner of dealing with the House of
Lords. The extreme Radicals were angered and condemned severely the
Premier for what they called his "backing down" and his "feeble speech."

Rumors in reference to Mr. Gladstone's resignation, which had been
started by the _Pall Mall Gazette_, while he was yet at Biarritz, were
now renewed. February 28, 1894, Mr. Gladstone informed the Queen of his
contemplated retirement, giving as reasons his failing eyesight,
deafness and age. March 1st, he made an important speech in the House of
Commons. He displayed so much vigor and earnestness in his speech that
it was thought that he had given up the idea of retiring. But this was
his last speech as Premier. March 2d, Mr. and Mrs. Gladstone were
summoned to Windsor, where they dined with the Queen, and remained over
night. Saturday, March 3, 1894, Mr. Gladstone tendered his resignation
as Premier to the Queen, who accepted it with many expressions of favor
and regret, and offered him again a peerage, which was declined. On the
way to Windsor and return to London, Mr. Gladstone was greeted by a
large and enthusiastic crowd. Hundreds of letters and telegrams
expressing regret, because of his retirement, were received by the
ex-Premier, On Sunday he attended church as usual and was looking well,
Mr. Balfour in the Commons, and Lord Salisbury in the Lords, vied with
Mr. Gladstone's political friends in speaking his praise, and referring
in the highest terms to his character and labors. The press in all parts
of the world spoke in glowing terms of his natural endowments, great
attainments, invaluable services, pure character and wonderfully
vigorous old age. It was quite evident that Mr. Gladstone's retirement
was not enforced by mental or physical infirmities, or by his unfitness
for the leadership of the House and the Premiership, but that as a wise
precaution, and upon the solicitation of his family, he had laid down
his power while he was yet able to wield it with astonishing vigor. Thus
closed the fourth administration of this remarkable man, the greatest
English statesman of his time. In all history there is no parallel case,
and no official record such as his.

Lord Rosebery was appointed Premier in the place of Mr. Gladstone, and
Sir William V. Harcourt became the leader of the Liberal party in the
House of Commons. Mr. Gladstone wrote congratulating Lord Rosebery, and
promised to aid him whenever his assistance was required. In assuming
office Lord Rosebery eulogized Mr. Gladstone, and announced that there
would be no change in the policy of reform of the Liberal party under

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