Page:Samuel Scoville -Abraham Lincoln, His Story.djvu/38

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If any man cease to attack me I never remember his past against him,

he declared in one of his speeches.

Stand with anybody that stands right, and part with him when he goes wrong,

he said to men who esteem their party more than they do their principles.

The advice of a father to his son, "Beware of entrance to a quarrel, but being in, bear it that the opposed may beware of thee," is good, but not the best. Quarrel not at all. No man resolved to make the most of himself can spare time for personal contention. Still less can he afford to take all the consequences, including the vitiating of his temper and the loss of self-control. Yield larger things to which you can show no more than equal right; yield lesser ones, though clearly your own. Better give your path to a dog than be bitten by him in contesting the right. Even killing the dog would not cure the bite.

So he wrote, and so he lived.

He trained himself into a habit of sympathy. No man with whom he talked even for a few moments but felt that Lincoln was genuinely interested in him. Men trusted him for that, and because they saw by his everyday life that his sympathy was not put on but real. We like to read of the time in Springfield when he found a child sobbing on the porch of her home. She was to take her first railroad trip. The family had gone on and the hackman had forgotten to call for her trunk. There was no