Politically, too, 19th-century Britain was part of a much wider system of diplomacy generally known as the “Concert of Europe”.In the 1820s Foreign Secretary Lord Castlereagh might have condemned the “Holy Alliance” devised by Tsar Alexander I of Russia as a piece of “sublime mysticism and nonsense” but Britain took part in conferences and congresses all the same, playing a part in settling issues such as the independence of Belgium from the Netherlands, or Greece from the Ottoman Empire.
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Richard James Foster is a Christian theologian and author in the Quaker tradition. Born in 1942, in New Mexico, Foster has been a professor at Friends University and pastor of Evangelical Friends churches. He earned his undergraduate degree at George Fox University in Oregon and his Doctor of Pastoral Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary,and received an honorary doctorate from Houghton College.
Foster is best known for his 1978 book Celebration of Discipline, which examines the inward disciplines of prayer, fasting, meditation, and study in the Christian life, the outward disciplines of simplicity, solitude, submission, and service, and the corporate disciplines of confession, worship, guidance, and celebration. It was named by Christianity Today as one of the top ten books of the twentieth century.
In 1938, on the eve of the Second World War, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain referred to Czechoslovakia as “a far-off country of which we know nothing”.
Such an attitude would have struck the average Briton in the 19th century as strange.