Page:The Harvard Classics Vol. 51; Lectures.djvu/50

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40
HISTORY

is gone. That of sophisters, economists, and calculators has succeeded; and the glory of Europe is extinguished for ever."[1]

Thus Burke proudly looked down on the miseries of France, while Voltaire had admiringly looked up to the prosperities of England. And we who come more than a century later, while recognizing their preeminence as men of letters, may perceive that as thinkers they were perhaps a little too near their objects. Burke's arguments are always admirable but unconvincing; while Voltaire's often justified praise of the English reposes on an obvious failure to understand them.

  1. H. C., xxiv, 212-213.