The Earl of Meath, Lord Lieutenant of County Dublin, who was next called on, declared that their gathering would be historic because for the first time in her history Irishmen of all classes, creeds, and politics had met on the same platform. The modern Attila might be known, as his predecessor was known, as the scourge of God. But for the constant vigilance of our army and our fleet Ireland might have met the fate of Belgium. He suggested that Earl Kitchener should, as far as possible, see that the Irish corps at the front should act together.
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Speech in the Skating Rink, Oct. 2.
In the course of the last month I have addressed meetings in London, Edinburgh, and Dublin, and now in the completion of the task which I set myself and which the kindness of our great municipalities has allowed me to perform I have come to Cardiff. [Cheers.] England, Scotland, and Ireland have each of them a definite and a well-established capital city, but I have always understood that there was some doubt where the capital of the Principality of Wales was to be found on the map. [Laughter.] Wales is a single and indivisible entity with a life of its own, drawing its vitality from an ancient past, and both, I believe, in the volume and in the reality of its activity, never more virile than it is today. [Cheers.] But I do not know that there is any general agreement among Welshmen as to where their capital is to be found, [laughter, and a voice, “Here,”] and without attempting as an outsider to differentiate or to reconcile competing claims I stand here tonight on what I believe to be a safe coign of vantage under the hospitality and the authority of the Lord Mayor of Cardiff.
Though I am not altogether a stranger to Wales, you may nevertheless ask why I have requested your permission to address this great audience here tonight. I am not altogether an idle man, and during the last few months I can honestly say that there has hardly been a day, indeed there have been very few hours, which have not been preoccupied with grave cares and responsibility. But throughout them all I have been, and I am, sustained by a profound and unshakable belief in the righteousness of our cause [cheers] and by overwhelming evidence that in the pursuit and the maintenance of that cause the Government have behind them, without distinction of race, of party, or of class, the whole moral and material support of the British Empire. [Cheers.] Let me take the opportunity to acknowledge and to welcome the calm, reasoned, and dignified statement of our cause which the Christian Churches of the United Kingdom, through some of their most distinguished leaders and ministers, have this week presented to the world. [Cheers.]