"A King May Make A Nobleman, But He Cannot Make A Gentleman"

Context: Burke was born in Ireland, and although his entire adult life was spent in England he took an active interest in Irish affairs throughout his career. As a member of Parliament he frequently defended the Irish, and he always felt the Anglican domination of the millions of Irish Catholics constituted a sort of tyranny. William Smith, a member of the Irish Parliament, had spoken in defense of Irish Catholics, and Burke responded with this encouraging letter:

. . . The divisions which formerly prevailed in the Church, with all their overdone zeal, only purified and ventilated our common faith, because there was no common enemy arrayed and embattled to take advantage of their dissensions; but now nothing but inevitable ruin will be the consequence of our quarrels. I think we may dispute, rail, persecute, and provoke the Catholics out of their prejudices; but it is not in ours they will take refuge. If anything is, one more than another, out of the power of man, it is to create a prejudice. Somebody has said, that a king may make a nobleman, but he cannot make a gentleman.