22 MARCH 1930, Page 1

News of the Week

Lord Balfour THE death .of .Lord Balfour removes the last of the great statesmen who were Ministers under Queen Victoria and the whole nation is mournfully conscious of the irreparable gap that is left by the disappearance of an incomparably brilliant and universally admired figure. There was never an Englishman, of whatever party, taking part in an international assembly or conference who did not feel proud that Lord Balfour was his countryman. Lord Balfour seemed to fit every such occasion with graciousness of personality and grace- fulness of intellect. He rose to the summit of his representative capacity when with his admired daring, which was oddly enough never far behind his other quality of scepticism, he inaugurated in a few brief sentences at the Washington Conference the new epoch of naval peace between Great Britain and the United States. _ Again, he was the undisputed master of the subject when the Imperial Conference defined Dominion independence. He was a great if not a constructive Parliamentarian. Listeners at debates in the House of Commons could hardly believe that the Mr. Balfour who introduced a subject hesitatingly and sometimes perfunctorily was the same man who at the end of a debate on the same subject could subjugate the House with a flow of flashing raillery and devastating answers to criticism. His glamour will remain undimmed in great memories. We have discussed elsewhere his character as a statesman, thinker, and man; * * *