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Moderate Men and Moderate Measures

George Canning 1770 (Marylebone, Middlesex) – 1827 (Chiswick, Middlesex)



Praise to placeless proud ability,
 Let the prudent muse disclaim;
And sing the Statesman--all civility--
 Whom moderate talents raise to fame.
He, no random projects urging,
 Make us wild alarms to feel;
With moderate measures, gently purging
 Ills that prey on Britain's weal.

CHORUS.
  Gently purging,
  Gently purging,
 Gently purging Britain's weal.

Addington, with measured motion,
 Keep the tenor of thy way;
To glory yield no rash devotion,
 Led by luring lights astray;
Splendid talents are deceiving;
Tend to councils much too bold;
Moderate men we prize, believing,
 All that glitters is not gold.

GRAND CHORUS.
  All that Glisters,
  All that Glisters,
 All that Glisters is not gold!

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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George Canning

George Canning, FRS, was a British statesman and politician who served as Foreign Secretary and was briefly Prime Minister. Canning was born into an Anglo-Irish family at his parents' home in Queen Anne Street, Marylebone, London. Canning described himself as "an Irishman born in London". His father, George Canning, Sr., of Garvagh, County Londonderry, Ireland, was a gentleman of limited means, a failed wine merchant and lawyer, who renounced his right to inherit the family estate in exchange for payment of his substantial debts. George Sr. eventually abandoned the family and died in poverty on 11 April 1771, his son's first birthday, in London. Canning's mother, Mary Anne Costello, took work as a stage actress, a profession not considered respectable at the time. Indeed when in 1827 it looked as if Canning would become Prime Minister, Lord Grey remarked that "the son of an actress is, ipso facto, disqualified from becoming Prime Minister". more…

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