20 JULY 1878, Page 3

Mr. Alfred Austin, who delivered a great oration at Notting-

ham on Wednesday, at the annual gathering of the Conservative and Constitutional Associations, proclaimed his belief that if the British Empire is not " in its dotage," and if England is not

henceforth to lead the life of an idle annuitant, then we could " cheerfully and eagerly embrace the part marked out for us sby the truly imperial mind of the Prime Minister." This is very much like saying that if Lord Beaconsfield is not in his dotage, he might cheerfully and eagerly take upon himself all the four principal Secretaryships of State, and the First Lordship of the Admiralty, besides the Premiership ; or that if Lord Lytton be not in his dotage, he might cheerfully accept the Viceroyalty of an annexed China, in addition to the Viceroyalty of India. Mr. Austin should study not only the meaning but the measure of his words, before he pours them out so glibly.