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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
Macaulay
By Sydney Smith (1771–1845)
 
TO take Macaulay out of literature and society, and put him in the House of Commons, is like taking the chief physician out of London during a pestilence.  1
  “Oh yes! we both talk a great deal; but I don’t believe Macaulay ever did hear my voice,” he exclaimed laughing. “Sometimes when I have told a good story, I have thought to myself, Poor Macaulay! he will be very sorry some day to have missed hearing that.”  2
  I always prophesied his greatness from the first moment I saw him, then a very young and unknown man on the Northern Circuit. There are no limits to his knowledge, on small subjects as well as great; he is like a book in breeches.  3
  Yes, I agree, he is certainly more agreeable since his return from India. His enemies might have said before (though I never did so) that he talked rather too much; but now he has occasional flashes of silence, that make his conversation perfectly delightful. But what is far better and more important than all this is, that I believe Macaulay to be incorruptible. You might lay ribbons, stars, garters, wealth, title, before him in vain. He has an honest genuine love of his country, and the world could not bribe him to neglect her interests.  4
 
 
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