Edward White says that probably, "when all good men alike are placed in a condition of religious equality, and the whole complicated iniquity of Government Church patronage is swept away, more of moral and ennobling influence than ever will be brought to bear upon the action of statesmen." We already have an example of religious equality in our colonies.
The more frequently the governing party was changed, the more the individual was led to make the utmost of the exercise and enjoyment of power. The statesmen and popular leaders, especially in Florentine history, acquired so marked a personal character that we can scarcely find, even exceptionally, a parallel to them in contemporary history, hardly even in Jacob van Arteveldt.
After all, generals and statesmen are but fallible men, the most magnanimous of whom are watchful of their rivals, and love not those who despitefully use them.
How, then, can we be reassured by any German pacifist protests and demonstrations? How can we believe that German peace is anything more than a precarious truce as long as German statesmen, German thinkers, German teachers and preachers, unanimously tell us that the philosophy of war is the only gospel of salvation?
Certainly the days were changed since Henry IV. leaned on the arm of Barneveld, and consulted with him, and with him only, among all the statesmen of Europe on his great schemes for regenerating Christendom and averting that general war which, now that the great king had been murdered and the Advocate imprisoned, had already begun to ravage Europe.
When Louis overshadowed Europe and threatened England, our king was in his pay and had made a secret treaty with him; our statesmen, moreover, had destroyed our alliance with the maritime powers of Sweden and Holland, we had war with the Dutch, and our fleet was beaten by them.
A treaty was from the first negotiated between these two statesmen with the same cordiality as if it were a private transaction between intimate companions. Deeming the interests of their country the same, they gave full scope to that sympathy of character, which disposed them to an entire reliance on each other's professions and engagements.
If Carthaginian statesmen believed that they had attached to the interests of Carthage her Phoenician subjects by their greater dread of a Libyan revolt and all the landholders by means of token-money, they transferred mercantile calculation to a sphere to which it did not apply.
We have heard of amateur artists, amateur soldiers, amateur statesmen; but no one has ever heard of an amateur gentleman. Gilbert Warde knew little Latin beyond the few prayers taught him by the manor priest at Stoke; but in the efficacy of those prayers he believed with all his heart and soul.
As such statesmen could not imagine a republic, they ever dreaded the restoration in the United Provinces of the subverted authority of Spain. France and England were jealous of each other, and both were jealous of Spain.