Edmund Burke

Edmund Burke

Edmund Burke

Edmund Burke

Excerpt

The influence of Edmund Burke on the theory and practice of British politics during the last hundred and fifty years has been unique. No even approximate parallel to it can be found. It is impossible, for example, to think of any British statesman of whom it might be truthfully said that his mind had been formed by Locke or Hobbes, yet it is equally impossible to think of any outstanding English parliamentarian during this period of whom it can be said that he altogether escaped the influence of Burke. Nevertheless, Burke was not merely a teacher of the techniques of political life; he was no mere Machiavelli of parliamentary government, taking its ends and origins for granted and confining himself to telling practical men how to achieve what they wanted to achieve. Burke's stature as a philosopher of politics has grown, though not steadily, since his death, and it has never seemed more impressive than it does today.

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