James Ford Rhodes (1848–1927). History of the Civil War, 1861–1865. 1917.

Page 276

  hearty shakes of the hand that marked the existence of active feeling at bottom. It was not the lukewarmness and indifference of the aristocracy but the genuine English heartiness of good-will.” On February 26, “The current is still setting strongly with us among the people.”  23   These demonstrations show what potent arguments for the Northern side were the Emancipation Proclamation and the organized anti-slavery agitation. Those Englishmen who had espoused the cause of the South now became, by the logic of the situation, apologists for slavery. The Times presented the Biblical argument for the justification of it and told the story of Paul and Onesimus in the language and temper of the Southern planter. Slavery, it argued further, is no more at variance with the spirit of the gospel than “sumptuous fare, purple and fine linen”; and it said of the Proclamation that was arousing the enthusiasm of the masses, President Lincoln “calls to his aid the execrable expedient of a servile insurrection. Egypt is destroyed but his heart is hardened and he will not let the people go.” The Saturday Review urged that the laws dictated from on high, as recorded in the Old Testament, sanctioned and protected property in slaves. But “the American law-giver not only confiscates his neighbor’s slaves but orders the slaves to cut their master’s throats. Nor is the matter left to the remote guidance of Old Testament precedent.… St. Paul sent Onesimus, the fugitive slave of that time, back to his master Philemon; so that without the master’s consent it was not competent, even in an Apostle, to release a slave. But what St. Paul might not do Abraham Lincoln may.” Later it spoke of the movement which was ennobling the common people of England as a “carnival of cant—arousing agitation on behalf of the divine right of insurrection and massacre.” The Times and Saturday Review,