22 APRIL 1882, Page 2

Lord Selborne deserves no little credit for his admirable reply

to Mr. Sumner, who had written to him to know whether Mr.

William Hardman, Chairman of the Surrey Quarter Sessions, and Recorder of Kingston-on-Thames, could be regarded as the proper kind of man to hold a commission of the peace, since be had spoken of Mr. Gladstone thus :—" He posed before the world as a religious, and an honest, and a good man ; but he (Mr. Hardman) believed that he was one of the most inveterate hum- bugs that ever lived." To this inquiry, Lord Sclborne answers that he feels no surprise at Mr. Sumner's regarding such lan- guage as unbecoming in one who has judicial duties to perform. "But," says Lord Selborne, "if I am to exercise the power of my office to remove Mr. Hardman for the speech attributed to him, I do not see how I could well stop short of doing the same with the leaders of his party in both Houses of Parliament, upon whose examples (as reported in the newspapers) he has but little improved. The public know the value of such lan- guage, and I should have no fear that if I myself, or Mr. Glad- stone, should have to be dealt with by Mr. Hardman, as a magistrate, he would do us justice." Nothing could be more delicately hit off. Too many men, when they speak as par- tisans, do not use language in the same way in which they would use it to convey truth. They use it as an offensive weapon merely, and not even Mr. Hardman understands and practises the use of language as an offensive weapon so effectively as Lord Salisbury.