19 JUNE 1947, Page 16


Sm,—Your reviewer of Forty Years In and Out of Parliament by Sir Percy Harris blames the author for wrongly attributing well-known say- ings to the wrong persons, and claims for Mr. Baldwin rather than for " someone in the gallery the characterisation of the 1919 Parliament as a lot of hard-facectnen who had done well out of the war. Can he give chapter and verse A* this? It does not sound like a Baldwinian jibe at all, but rather like a Liberal's judgement. " I. made a speech to them," said Lloyd George, his eyes sparkling with fun and a smile spreading rapidly over his face. " I addressed myself first to the Opposition benches in front of me. They were very cold and hostile ; I couldn't get a cheer. This, I said to myself, is not the House of Commons ; it's the Trades Union Congress. So I turned as one does, in such circumstances to the benches behind me, but neither was that the House of Commons ; it was the Associated Chambers of Commerce." This was in March, 1919. Lloyd George was spending the evening with Balfour and Austen Cham- berlain, and this was the latter's account of Lloyd George's description.—

[Our reviewer writes: The late Lord Keynes told me, some time in 1919, that Mr. Baldwin, then Financial Secretary to the Treasury, had recently made the remark to him.]