Excerpt from Lee's Centennial: An Address Having occasion once to refer in discussion to certain of the founders of our Massachusetts Commonwealth, I made the assertion that their force lay in character; and I added that in saying this I paid, and meant to pay, the highest tribute which in my judgment could be paid to a community or to its typical men. Quite a number of years have passed since I so expressed myself, and in those years I have grown older - materially older; but I now repeat even more confidently than I then uttered them, these other words The older I have grown and the more I have studied and seen, the greater in my esteem, as an element of strength in a people, has Character become, and the less in the con duct of human affairs have I thought of mere capacity or even genius. With Character a race will become great, even though as stupid and unassimilating as the Romans; without Character, any race will in the long run prove a failure, though it may number in it individ uals having all the brilliancy of the Jews, crowned with the genius of Napoleon. We.
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