“Old Bill” Suggests—
When polished and suave Lord Chesterfield, in 1774, recommended to his son grace of manners as the most essential quality for a man of the world, he attained a fame that makes his name still a synonym for what he praised. Yet he was far from being a fop. No man could be elected to parliament, be ambassador to Holland, rescue Hanover from threatening war clouds, serve as lord-lieutenant of Ireland, and close his career with two years as secretary of state, without being able to back up his words.
“Let no complaisance, no gentleness of temper, no weak desire of pleasing on your part,” he writes in his memoirs, “no wheedling, coaxing, nor flattery on other people’s, make you recede one jot from any point that reason and prudence have bid you pursue.”
How different from modern legislators—both ways.
ROYAL F. MUNGER.