Mr. Balfour visited Edinburgh yesterday week and made two admirable
speeches, the first in connexion with the Victoria Hospital for Consumption, the second at the opening meeting of the Jubilee session of the Philomathic Society. After an address from Lord Salvesen on the art of public speaking, Mr. Balfour made some excellent remarks on the essentials of this difficult art. He did not deprecate the study of elocution, so long as the student avoided the tricks and mannerisms taught by its professors. "After all, the art of public speaking was but the art of public conversation raised to a higher level." The two great qualifications for a speaker were, first, the getting in touch with his audience ; and next, the forgetting of himself in his desire to persuade
and interest them. But these were worthless unless a speaker had got something to says—something that he had
thought of before, not casually but deeply. Personal mag- netism and knowledge could outweigh the faultiest diction. In conclusion, Mr. Balfour declared that the greatest speeches were not those which read best, and instanced those of Mr. Gladstone, who had every single resource of oratory at his disposal,—humour, invective, expression, and the power of holding an audience even on the most intricate and driest matters of detail.