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Quotation by Alexis de Tocqueville
An American cannot converse, but he can discuss, and his talk falls into a dissertation. He speaks to you as if he was addressing a meeting; and if he should chance to become warm in the discussion, he will say "Gentlemen" to the person with whom he is conversing.
Alexis de Tocqueville (1805–1859), French social philosopher. Democracy in America, vol. 1, ch. 14 (1835).
Queen Victoria famously complained that Gladstone addressed her in the same manner, "as if he were addressing a public meeting."
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