Page:The World's Famous Orations Volume 5.djvu/247

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Born in 1838; graduated from Oxford in 1859 ; became Editor of the

Fortnightly Review in 1807; of the Pall Mall Gazette in 1880; elected

to Parliament in 1883; Chief Secretary for Ireland in 1886 and again

in 1892 ; Secretary for India in 1906.

"What is so hard as a just estimate of the events of our own time ? It is only now, a century and a half later, that we really perceive that a writer has something to say for himself when he calls Wolfe's exploit at Quebec the turning point in modern history. And to-day it is hard to imagine any rational standard that would not make the American Revolution — an insurrection of thirteen little colonies, with a population of 3,000,000 scattered in a distant wilderness among savages — a mightier event in many of its aspects than the volcanic convulsion in France. Again, the upbuilding of your great West on this con- tinent is reckoned by some the most important world movement of the last hundred years. But is it more important than the amazing, imposing, and perhaps disquieting apparition of Japan? One authority insists that when Russia descended into the Far East and pushed her frontier on

• Delivered on Founder's Day at the Carnegie Institute, Pittsburg, Pa., November 3, 1904. By kind permission of the New York Times. Abridged.


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