Page:The House of Lords and the nation.djvu/7

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I have been requested to write a few words of introduction to the following pamphlet on the House of Lords; and it is an agreeable task to bear witness to its singularly fair and truthful reasoning. There is nothing from which I materially differ, there is very much in which I cordially agree. In its moderate and argumentative style, in its complete freedom from personal abuse, unfair attack, or exaggerated statement, it presents a remarkable contrast to articles and papers which have lately been written against the House of Lords, and which, by their injustice and violence, seem to drag us back into the worst political literature of the last century.

I heartily and sincerely recommend it to the careful reading of those who desire to know the facts of a case that has been grossly misrepresented. They will find in it nothing, I believe, that is not consistent with fact, and that has not the warrant of History.

With prejudiced partisans I have no concern; but to conscientious and reasonable men, who desire to be satisfied as to the rights of the question, I would say, "Test the allegations of Radical speakers and pamphleteers by the certain facts of History, and study these facts not in the pages of Tory writers but in the deliberate conclusions of Liberal Historians, where there can be no suspicion of favour or partiality towards the House of Lords." Is it possible to make a fairer proposal? And if indeed the offer be accepted and the question studied from this point of view—of course I mean broadly and fairly, not picking out exceptional sentences or facts, or divorcing the general meaning of the writer from the context—it will, I