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Title: McClure's Magazine, Vol. 1, No. 1
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "McClure's Magazine, Vol. 1, No. 1" ***

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VOL. I    JUNE, 1893    No. 1

  S. S. McCLURE, Limited

Copyright, 1893, by S. S. McClure, Limited. All rights reserved.

  Press of J. J. Little & Co.
  Astor Place, New York

Table of Contents

  A Dialogue between William Dean Howells and Hjalmar Hjorth
      Boyesen. Recorded By Mr. Boyesen.                              3
  The Nymph of the Eddy. By Gilbert Parker.                         12
  Human Documents. An Introduction by Sarah Orne Jewett.            16
  How They Are Captured, Transported, Trained, and Sold. By
      Raymond Blathwayt.                                            26
  Under Sentence of the Law. By Mrs. Robert Louis Stevenson.        34
  Unsolved Problems that Edison Is Studying. By E. J. Edwards.      37
  From "Locksley Hall". By Alfred, Lord Tennyson.                   43
  A Day With Gladstone. By H. W. Massingham.                        44
  Where Man Got His Ears. By Henry Drummond.                        52
  James Parton's Rules of Biography.                                59
  Europe at the Present Moment. By Mr. De Blowitz.                  63
  The Comedy of War. By Joel Chandler Harris.                       69
  The Rose Is Such a Lady. By Gertrude Hall.                        82
  The Count de Lesseps of To-day. By R. H. Sherard.                 83


  Professor Boyesen in His Study.                                    4
  The Birthplace of W. D. Howells at Martins Ferry, Ohio.            5
  The Giustiniani Palace.                                            6
  W. D. Howells, After His Return From Venice.                       7
  W. D. Howells, in Cambridge in 1868.                               8
  W. D. Howells' Summer Home at Belmont in 1878.                     9
  The Author of "Annie Kilburn."                                    10
  General Lew Wallace.                                              19
  William Dean Howells.                                             20
  Hjalmar Hjorth Boyesen.                                           22
  Alphonse Daudet.                                                  24
  Hawarden Castle.                                                  46
  The Library.                                                      47
  The Gladstone Family.                                             51
  "Balanoglossus", and Large Sea Lamprey.                           53
  Embryos Showing Gill-slits.                                       53
  Adult Shark.                                                      54
  Marble Head of Satyr.                                             55
  Head of Satyr in Group of Marsyas and Apollo.                     55
  Faun.                                                             55
  Form of the Ear in Baby Outang.                                   55
  Horned Sheep and Goat with Cervical Auricles.                     55
  Ear of Barbary Ape, Chimpanzee, and Man.                          57
  James Parton in 1852.                                             59
  James Parton in 1891.                                             62
  The Chateau de La Chesnaye.                                       84
  Count de Lesseps in 1869.                                         85
  Madame de Lesseps in 1880.                                        88
  Count de Lesseps in 1880.                                         89
  Count de Lesseps in 1892.                                         90




When I was requested to furnish a dramatic biography of Mr. Howells, I
was confronted with what seemed an insuperable difficulty. The more I
thought of William Dean Howells, the less dramatic did he seem to me.
The only way that occurred to me of introducing a dramatic element
into our proposed interview was for me to assault him with tongue or
pen, in the hope that he might take energetic measures to resent my
intrusion; but as, notwithstanding his unvarying kindness to me, and
many unforgotten benefits, I cherished only the friendliest feelings
for him, I could not persuade myself to procure dramatic interest at
such a price.

My second objection, I am bound to confess, arose from my own sense of
dignity which rebelled against the _rôle_ of an interviewer, and it
was not until my conscience was made easy on this point that I agreed
to undertake the present article. I was reminded that it was an
ancient and highly dignified form of literature I was about to revive;
and that my precedent was to be sought not in the modern newspaper
interview, but in the Platonic dialogue. By the friction of two
kindred minds, sparks of thought may flash forth which owe their
origin solely to the friendly collision. We have a far more vivid
portrait of Socrates in the beautiful conversational turns of "The
Symposium" and the first book of "The Republic," than in the purely
objective account of Xenophon in his "Memorabilia." And Howells,
though he may not know it, has this trait in common with Socrates,
that he can portray himself, unconsciously, better than I or anybody
else could do it for him.

If I needed any further encouragement, I found it in the assurance that
what I was expected to furnish was to be in the nature of "an exchange
of confidences between two friends with a view to publication." It
was understood, of course, that Mr. Howells was to be more confiding
than myself, and that his reminiscences were to predominate; for an
author, however unheroic he may appear to his own modesty, is bound
to be the hero of his biography. What made the subject so alluring to
me, apart from the personal charm which inheres in the man and all
that appertains to him, was the consciousness that our friendship was of
twenty-two years' standing, and that during all that time not a
single jarring note had been introduced to mar the harmony of our

Equipped, accordingly, with a good conscience and a lead pencil
(which remained undisturbed in my breast-pocket), I set out to
"exchange confidences" with the author of "Silas Lapham" and "A Modern
Instance." I reached the enormous human hive on Fifty-ninth Street
where my subject, for the present, occupies a dozen most comfortable
and ornamental cells, and was promptly hoisted up to the fourth floor
and deposited in front of his door. It is a house full of electric
wires and tubes--literally honeycombed with modern conveniences. But
in spite of all these, I made my way triumphantly to Mr. Howells's
den, and after a proper prelude began the novel task assigned to me.


"I am afraid," I remarked quite _en passant_, "that I shall be
embarrassed not by my ignorance, but by my knowledge concerning your
life. For it is difficult to ask with good grace about what you
already know. I am aware, for instance, that you were born at Martin's
Ferry, Ohio, March 11, 1837; that you removed thence to Dayton, and a
few years later to Jefferson, Ashtabula County; that your father
edited, published, and printed a country newspaper of Republican
complexion, and that you spent a good part of your early years in the
printing office. Nevertheless, I have some difficulty in realizing the
environment of your boyhood."

_Howells._ If you have read my "Boy's Town," which is in all
essentials autobiographical, you know as much as I could tell you. The
environment of my early life was exactly as there described.

_Boyesen._ Your father, I should judge, then, was not a strict

_Howells._ No. He was the gentlest of men--a friend and companion to
his sons. He guided us in an unobtrusive way without our suspecting
it. He was continually putting books into my hands, and they were
always good books; many of them became events in my life. I had no end
of such literary passions during my boyhood. Among the first was
Goldsmith, then came Cervantes and Irving.

_Boyesen._ Then there was a good deal of literary atmosphere about
your childhood?

_Howells._ Yes. I can scarcely remember the time when books did not
play a great part in my life. Father was by his culture and his
interests rather isolated from the community in which we lived, and
this made him and all of us rejoice the more in a new author, in whose
world we would live for weeks and months, and who colored our thoughts
and conversation.


_Boyesen._ It has always been a matter of wonder to me that, with so
little regular schooling, you stepped full-fledged into literature
with such an exquisite and wholly individual style.

_Howells._ If you accuse me of that kind of thing, I must leave you to
account for it. I had always a passion for literature, and to a boy
with a mind and a desire to learn, a printing office is not a bad

_Boyesen._ How old were you when you left Jefferson, and went to

_Howells._ I was nineteen years old when I went to the capital and
wrote legislative reports for Cincinnati and Cleveland papers;
afterwards I became one of the editors of the "Ohio State Journal." My
duties gradually took a wide range, and I edited the literary column
and wrote many of the leading articles. I was then in the midst of my
enthusiasm for Heine, and was so impregnated with his spirit, that a
poem which I sent to the "Atlantic Monthly" was mistaken by Mr. Lowell
for a translation from the German poet. When he had satisfied himself,
however, that it was not a translation, he accepted and printed it.

_Boyesen._ Tell me how you happened to publish your first volume,
"Poems by Two Friends," in partnership with John J. Piatt.

_Howells._ I had known Piatt as a young printer; afterwards when he
began to write poems, I read them and was delighted with them. When he
came to Columbus I made his acquaintance, and we became friends. By
this time we were both contributors to the "Atlantic Monthly." I may
as well tell you that his contributions to our joint volume were far
superior to mine.

_Boyesen._ Did Lowell share that opinion?

_Howells._ That I don't know. He wrote me a very charming letter, in
which he said many encouraging things, and he briefly reviewed the
book in the "Atlantic."

_Boyesen._ What was the condition of society in Columbus during those

_Howells._ There were many delightful and cultivated people there,
and society was charming; the North and South were both represented,
and their characteristics united in a kind of informal Western
hospitality, warm and cordial in its tone, which gave of its very
best without stint. Salmon P. Chase, later Secretary of the Treasury,
and Chief Justice of the United States, was then Governor of Ohio.
He had a charming family, and made us young editors welcome at his
house. All winter long there was a round of parties at the different
houses; the houses were large and we always danced. These parties were
brilliant affairs, socially, but besides, we young people had many
informal gayeties. The old Starling Medical College, which was
defunct as an educational institution, except for some vivisection
and experiments on hapless cats and dogs that went on in some
out-of-the-way corners, was used as a boarding-house; and there was
a large circular room in which we often improvised dances. We young
fellows who lodged in the place were half a dozen journalists,
lawyers, and law-students; one was, like myself, a writer for the
"Atlantic," and we saw life with joyous eyes. We read the new
books, and talked them over with the young ladies whom we seem to
have been always calling upon. I remember those years in Columbus
as among the happiest years of my life.

_Boyesen._ From Columbus you went as consul to Venice, did not you?


_Howells._ Yes. You remember I had written a campaign "Life of
Lincoln." I was, like my father, an ardent Anti-slavery man. I went
myself to Washington soon after President Lincoln's inauguration. I
was first offered the consulate to Rome; but as it depended entirely
upon perquisites, which amounted only to three or four hundred dollars
a year, I declined it, and they gave me Venice. The salary was raised
to fifteen hundred dollars, which seemed to me quite beyond the dreams
of avarice.

_Boyesen._ Do not you regard that Venetian experience as a very
valuable one?

_Howells._ Oh, of course. In the first place, it gave me four years of
almost uninterrupted leisure for study and literary work. There was,
to be sure, occasionally an invoice to be verified, but that did not
take much time. Secondly, it gave me a wider outlook upon the world
than I had hitherto had. Without much study of a systematic kind, I
had acquired a notion of English, French, German, and Spanish
literature. I had been an eager and constant reader, always guided in
my choice of books by my own inclination. I had learned German. Now,
my first task was to learn Italian; and one of my early teachers was a
Venetian priest, whom I read Dante with. This priest in certain ways
suggested Don Ippolito in "A Foregone Conclusion."

_Boyesen._ Then he took snuff, and had a supernumerary calico

_Howells._ Yes. But what interested me most about him was his
religious skepticism. He used to say, "The saints are the gods
baptized." Then he was a kind of baffled inventor; though whether his
inventions had the least merit I was unable to determine.

_Boyesen._ But his love story?

_Howells._ That was wholly fictitious.

_Boyesen._ I remember you gave me, in 1874, a letter of introduction
to a Venetian friend of yours, named Brunetta, whom I failed to find.

_Howells._ Yes, Brunetta was the first friend I had in Venice. He was
a distinctly Latin character--sober, well-regulated, and probity

_Boyesen._ Do you call that the Latin character?

_Howells._ It is not our conventional idea of it; but it is fully as
characteristic, if not more so, than the light, mercurial,
pleasure-loving type which somehow in literature has displaced the
other. Brunetta and I promptly made the discovery that we were
congenial. Then we became daily companions. I had a number of other
Italian friends too, full of beautiful _bonhomie_ and Southern
sweetness of temperament.


_Boyesen._ You must have acquired Italian in a very short time?

_Howells._ Yes; being domesticated in that way in the very heart of
that Italy, which was then _Italia irridente_, I could not help
steeping myself in its atmosphere and breathing in the language, with
the rest of its very composite flavors.

_Boyesen._ Yes; and whatever I know of Italian literature I owe
largely to the completeness of that soaking process of yours. Your
book on the Italian poets is one of the most charmingly sympathetic
and illuminative bits of criticism that I know.

_Howells._ I am glad you think so; but the book was never a popular
success. Of all the Italian authors, the one I delighted in the most
was Goldoni. His exquisite realism fascinated me. It was the sort of
thing which I felt I ought not to like; but for all that I liked it

_Boyesen._ How do you mean that you ought not to like it?

_Howells._ Why, I was an idealist in those days. I was only
twenty-four or twenty-five years old, and I knew the world chiefly
through literature. I was all the time trying to see things as others
had seen them, and I had a notion that, in literature, persons and
things should be nobler and better than they are in the sordid
reality; and this romantic glamour veiled the world to me, and kept me
from seeing things as they are. But in the lanes and alleys of Venice
I found Goldoni everywhere. Scenes from his plays were enacted before
my eyes, with all the charming Southern vividness of speech and
gesture, and I seemed at every turn to have stepped at unawares into
one of his comedies. I believe this was the beginning of my revolt.
But it was a good while yet before I found my own bearings.

_Boyesen._ But permit me to say that it was an exquisitely delicate
set of fresh Western senses you brought with you to Venice. When I was
in Venice in 1878, I could not get away from you, however much I
tried. I saw your old Venetian senator, in his august rags, roasting
coffee; and I promenaded about for days in the chapters of your
"Venetian Life," like the Knight Huldbrand, in the Enchanted Forest in
"Undine," and I could not find my way out. Of course, I know that,
being what you were, you could not have helped writing that book, but
what was the immediate cause of your writing it?

_Howells._ From the day I arrived in Venice I kept a journal in
which I noted down my impressions. I found a young pleasure in
registering my sensations at the sight of notable things, and
literary reminiscences usually shimmered through my observations. Then
I received an offer from the "Boston Daily Advertiser," to write
weekly or bi-weekly letters, for which they paid me five dollars, in
greenbacks, a column, nonpareil. By the time this sum reached Venice,
shaven and shorn by discounts for exchange in gold premium, it had
usually shrunk to half its size or less. Still I was glad enough to
get even that, and I kept on writing joyously. So the book grew in my
hands until, at the time I resigned in 1865, I was trying to have it
published. I offered it successively to a number of English
publishers; but they all declined it. At last Mr. Trübner agreed to
take it, if I could guarantee the sale of five hundred copies in
the United States, or induce an American publisher to buy that
number of copies in sheets. I happened to cross the ocean with Mr.
Hurd of the New York firm of Hurd & Houghton, and repeated Mr.
Trübner's proposition to him. He refused to commit himself; but some
weeks after my arrival in New York, he told me that the risk was
practically nothing at all, and that his firm would agree to take the
five hundred copies. The book was an instant success. I don't know
how many editions of it have been printed, but I should say that
its sale has been upward of forty thousand copies, and it still
continues. The English weeklies gave me long complimentary notices,
which I carried about for months in my pocket like love-letters, and
read surreptitiously at odd moments. I thought it was curious that
other people to whom I showed the reviews did not seem much


_Boyesen._ After returning to this country, did not you settle down in
New York?

_Howells._ Yes; I was for a while a free lance in literature. I did
whatever came in my way, and sold my articles to the newspapers,
going about from office to office, but I was finally offered a place
in "The Nation," where I obtained a fixed position at a salary. I
had at times a sense that, by going abroad, I had fallen out of the
American procession of progress; and, though I was elbowing my way
energetically through the crowd, I seemed to have a tremendous
difficulty in recovering my lost place on my native soil, and
asserting my full right to it. So, when young men beg me to recommend
them for consulships, I always feel in duty bound to impress on them
this great danger of falling out of the procession, and asking them
whether they have confidence in their ability to reconquer the
place they have deserted, for while they are away it will be pretty
sure to be filled by somebody else. A man returning from a residence
of several years abroad has a sense of superfluity in his own
country--he has become a mere supernumerary whose presence or absence
makes no particular difference.

_Boyesen._ What year did you leave "The Nation" and assume the
editorship of "The Atlantic"?

_Howells._ I took the editorship in 1872, but went to live in
Cambridge six or seven years before. I was first assistant editor
under James T. Fields, who was uniformly kind and considerate, and
with whom I got along perfectly. It was a place that he could have
made odious to me, but he made it delightful. I have the tenderest
regard and the highest respect for his memory.

_Boyesen._ I need scarcely ask you if your association with Lowell was

_Howells._ It was in every way charming. He was twenty years my
senior, but he always treated me as an equal and a contemporary. And
you know the difference between thirty and fifty is far greater than
between forty and sixty, or fifty and seventy. I dined with him every
week, and he showed the friendliest appreciation of the work I was
trying to do. We took long walks together; and you know what a rare
talker he was. Somehow I got much nearer to him than to Longfellow. As
a man, Longfellow was flawless. He was full of noble friendliness and
encouragement to all literary workers in whom he believed.

_Boyesen._ Do you remember you once said to me that he was a most
inveterate praiser?

[Illustration: W. D. HOWELLS' SUMMER HOME AT BELMONT IN 1878.]

_Howells._ I may have said that; for in the kindness of his heart, and
his constitutional reluctance to give pain, he did undoubtedly often
strain a point or two in speaking well of things. But that was part of
his beautiful kindliness of soul and admirable urbanity. Lowell, you
know, confessed to being "a tory in his nerves;" but Longfellow, with
all his stateliness of manner, was nobly and perfectly democratic. He
was ideally good; I think he was without a fault.

_Boyesen._ I have never known a man who was more completely free from
snobbishness and pretence of all kinds. It delighted him to go out of
his way to do a man a favor. There was, however, a little touch of
Puritan pallor in his temperament, a slight lack of robustness; that
is, if his brother's biography can be trusted. What I mean to say is,
that he appears there a trifle too perfect; too bloodlessly, and
almost frostily, statuesque. I have always had a little diminutive
grudge against the Reverend Samuel Longfellow for not using a single
one of those beautiful anecdotes I sent him illustrative of the warmer
and more genial side of the poet's character. He evidently wanted to
portray a Plutarchian man of heroic size, and he therefore had to
exclude all that was subtly individualizing.

_Howells._ Well, there is always room for another biography of

_Boyesen._ At the time when I made your acquaintance in 1871, you were
writing "Their Wedding Journey." Do you remember the glorious talks we
had together while the hours of the night slipped away unnoticed? We
have no more of those splendid conversational rages now-a-days. How
eloquent we were, to be sure; and with what delight you read those
chapters on "Niagara," "Quebec," and "The St. Lawrence;" and with what
rapture I listened! I can never read them without supplying the
cadence of your voice, and seeing you seated, twenty-two years younger
than now, in that cosey little library in Berkeley Street.

_Howells._ Yes; and do you mind our sudden attacks of hunger, when we
would start on a foraging expedition into the cellar, in the middle of
the night, and return, you with a cheese and crackers, and I with a
watermelon and a bottle of champagne? What jolly meals we improvised!
Only it is a wonder to me that we survived them.

_Boyesen._ You will never suspect what an influence you exerted upon my
fate by your friendliness and sympathy in those never-to-be-forgotten
days. You Americanized me. I had been an alien, and felt alien in
every fibre of my soul, until I met you. Then I became domesticated.
I found a kindred spirit who understood me, and whom I understood; and
that is the first and indispensable condition of happiness. It was at
your house, at a luncheon, I think, that I met Henry James.


_Howells._ Yes; James and I were constant companions. We took daily
walks together, and his father, the elder Henry James, was an
incomparably delightful and interesting man.

_Boyesen._ Yes; I remember him well. I doubt if I ever heard a more
brilliant talker.

_Howells._ No; he was one of the best talkers in America. And didn't
the immortal Ralph Keeler appear upon the scene during the summer of
'71 or '72?

_Boyesen._ Yes; your small son "Bua" insisted upon calling him "Big
Man Keeler" in spite of his small size.

_Howells._ Yes, Bua was the only one who ever saw Keeler life-size.

_Boyesen._ I remember how he sat in your library and told stories of
his negro minstrel days and his wild adventures in many climes, and
did not care whether you laughed with him or at him, but would join
you from sheer sympathy, and how we all laughed in chorus until our
sides ached!

_Howells._ Poor Keeler! He was a sort of migratory, nomadic survival;
but he had fine qualities, and was well equipped for a sort of
fiction. If he had lived he might have written the great American
novel. Who knows?

_Boyesen._ Was not it at Cambridge that Björnstjerne Björnson visited

_Howells._ No; that was in 1881, at Belmont, where we went in order to
be in the country, and give the children the benefit of country air.
When I met Björnson before, we had always talked Italian; but the
first thing he said to me at Belmont, was: "Now we will speak
English." And when he had got into the house, he picked up a book and
said in his abrupt way: "We do not put enough in;" meaning thereby,
that we ignored too much of life in our fiction--excluded it out of
regard for propriety. But when I met him, some years later, in Paris,
he had changed his mind about that, for he detested the French
naturalism, and could find nothing to praise in Zola.

_Boyesen._ I am going to ask you one of the interviewer's stock
questions, but you need not answer, you know: Which of your books do
you regard as the greatest?

_Howells._ I have always taken the most satisfaction in "A Modern
Instance." I have there come closest to American life as I know it.

_Boyesen._ But in "Silas Lapham" it seems to me that you have got a
still firmer grip on American reality.

_Howells._ Perhaps. Still I prefer "A Modern Instance." "Silas Lapham"
is the most successful novel I have published, except "A Hazard of New
Fortunes," which has sold nearly twice as many copies as any of the

_Boyesen._ What do you attribute that to?

_Howells._ Possibly to the fact that the scene is laid in New York;
the public throughout the country is far more interested in New York
than in Boston. New York, as Lowell once said, is a huge pudding, and
every town and village has been helped to a slice, or wants to be.

_Boyesen._ I rejoice that New York has found such a subtly appreciative
and faithful chronicler as you show yourself to be in "A Hazard of New
Fortunes." To the equipment of a great city--a world-city as the Germans
say--belongs a great novelist; that is to say, at least one. And even
though your modesty may rebel, I shall persist in regarding you
henceforth as _the_ novelist _par excellence_ of New York.

_Howells._ Ah, you don't expect me to live up to _that_ bit of taffy!




It lay in the sharp angle of a wooded shore near Pontiac. When the
river was high it had all the temper of a maelstrom, but in the hot
summer, when the logs had ceased to run, and the river wallowed idly
away to the rapids, it was like a molten mirror which, with the
regularity of a pulse, resolved itself into a funnel, as though
somewhere beneath there was a blowhole. It had a look of hunger. Even
the children noticed that, and they fed it with many things. What it
passed into its rumbling bowels you never saw again. You threw a stick
upon the shivering surface, and you saw it travel, first slowly, then
very swiftly, round and round the sides, till the throat of the eddy
seemed to open suddenly, and it ran straight down into darkness, and
presently the funnel filled up again. It was shadowed by a huge cedar
tree. If you came suddenly into the thicket above it, you were stilled
with wonder. The place was different from all others on the river. It
looked damp, it was so strangely green; the grass and trees showed so
juicy; you fancied you could slice the fallen logs through with a
penknife. Every sound there carried with a peculiar distinctness, yet
the air was almost painfully still. Through the stillness there ran
ever a sound, metallic, monotonous, pleasant--a clean cling-clung,
cling-clung. It never varied, was the river high or low. If you lay
down in the mossy grass you were lulled by that sing-song vibration,
behind which you heard the low sucking breath of the eddy. The two
sounds belonged to each other, and had a peculiar sympathy of tone.
The birds never sang in the place, not because it was gloomy, maybe,
but as though not to break in upon other rights.

There was nothing mysterious about that unceasing cling-clung, it was
merely the ram of a force-pump. If you followed the pipe that led from
the ram up the hill, you came to a large white house.

Many a summer day, and especially of a morning, a young girl came
dancing down to the eddy, to sit beside it. She and it were very good
friends; she used to tell it her secrets, and she made up a little
song about it--a simple, almost foolish little song such as a clever
young girl can write--Laure had been to the convent in Montreal, so
she was not a common village maid.

  "Green, so green, is the cedar tree,
    And green is the moss that's under;
  Can you hear the things that he says to me?
    Do you like them? O Eddy, I wonder."

It was very foolish. But she had such a soft, thrilling voice that you
would have thought it beautiful. She was young--about sixteen--and her
hair was so light that it fell about her like spray. But suddenly she
ceased to be quite happy.

Armand, the avocat's clerk, was a Protestant, and she had been meeting
him at the eddy secretly. What did she care about the Catechism, or
the _curé_, or an unblessed marriage, if Armand blessed her? She was
afraid of nothing; she would dare anything while she was certain of
him. But the _curé_ discovered something--she ceased to go to
confession, and, though he was a kind man, he had his duty to do.

There was trouble, and the ways of Laure's people were devious and
hard. It was said that she must go to the convent again, and they kept
her prisoner in the house. One day they brought her a letter which,
they said, was from Armand. It told her that he was going away, and
that he had given her up. She had never seen his writing--they had
trusted nothing to the village post-office--and she believed that the
letter was from him. She had wept so much that tears were all done;
her eyes only ached now. At first she thought that she would get away
and go to him, and beg him not to give her up--what does a child know
of pride all at once? But the pride came to her a little later, and
she tried to think what she must do. While her thoughts went waving
to and fro, and she could make nothing of them, she heard all the time
the long, sighing breath of the eddy and the cling-clung of the
force-pump. She never slept, and after a time it grew in her mind that
she never would sleep till she went down to the cedar tree and the
eddy; they seemed always calling her. She had said her Ave Marias over
and over again, but they seemed to do her no good. Nothing could quiet
her, not even the music of the twelfth mass, played on the little reed
organ by the organist of St. Savior's, when they took her to church
against her will--a passive rebel. The next day she was to go to the
convent again.

That night she stole from the house into the light of the soft harvest
moon, and ran down through the garden, over the road, and into the
cedar thicket. She did not hear behind her the footsteps of a man who,
night after night, had watched the house, hoping that she would come
out. She hastened to the cedar tree, and looked down into the eddy.
From far up the river there came the plaintive cry of a loon; but she
heard no other sound in the night, save this and the cling-clung of
the ram muffled by fallen branches, and the loud-breathing eddy which
invited--until an arm ran round her waist and held her fast.

A minute later he said: "You will come, then? And we shall be man and
wife very quick."

"Wait a minute," she said, and she picked up handfuls of leaves and
dropped them softly into the funnel of water.

"What's that for?" he asked.

"I am a cock-robin," she said with her old gayety. "There's a girl
drowned there. Yes, but it's true. She was a good Catholic and
unhappy. I'm a heretic now, and happy."

But she said her Ave Marias again just the same; being happy, they did
her more good. And she says that the eddy is spiteful to her now. It
had counted on a different end to her wooing.



To give to the world a collection of the successive portraits of a man
is to tell his affairs openly, and so betray intimate personalities.
We are often found quarrelling with the tone of the public press,
because it yields to what is called the public demand to be told both
the private affairs of noteworthy persons and the trivial details and
circumstances of those who are insignificant. Some one has said that a
sincere man willingly answers any questions, however personal, that
are asked out of interest, but instantly resents those that have their
impulse in curiosity; and that one's instinct always detects the
difference. This I take to be a wise rule of conduct; but beyond lies
the wider subject of our right to possess ourselves of personal
information, although we have a vague remembrance, even in these days,
of the belief of old-fashioned and decorous people, that subjects, not
persons, are fitting material for conversation.

But there is an honest interest, which is as noble a thing as
curiosity is contemptible; and it is in recognition of this, that
Lowell writes in the largest way in his "Essay on Rousseau and the

"Yet our love of minute biographical details," he says, "our desire to
make ourselves spies upon the men of the past, seems so much of an
instinct in us, that we must look for the spring of it in human
nature, and that somewhat deeper than mere curiosity or love of
gossip." And more emphatically in another paragraph: "The moment he
undertakes to establish ... a rule of conduct, we ask at once how far
are his own life and deed in accordance with what he preaches?"

This I believe to be at the bottom of even our insatiate modern
eagerness to know the best and the worst of our contemporaries; it is
simply to find out how far their behavior squares with their words and
position. We seldom stop to get the best point of view, either in
friendly talk or in a sober effort, to notice the growth of character,
or, in the widest way, to comprehend the traits and influence of a man
whose life in any way affects our own.

       *       *       *       *       *

Now and then, in an old picture gallery, one comes upon the grouped
portraits of a great soldier, or man of letters, or some fine lady
whose character still lifts itself into view above the dead level of
feminine conformity which prevailed in her time. The blurred pastel,
the cracked and dingy canvas, the delicate brightness of a miniature
which bears touching signs of wear--from these we piece together a
whole life's history. Here are the impersonal baby face; the
domineering glance of the school-boy, lord of his dog and gun; the
wan-visaged student who was just beginning to confront the serried
ranks of those successes which conspired to hinder him from his duty
and the fulfilment of his dreams; here is the mature man, with grave
reticence of look and a proud sense of achievement; and at last the
older and vaguer face, blurred and pitifully conscious of fast waning
powers. As they hang in a row they seem to bear mute witness to all
the successes and failures of a life.

This very day, perhaps, you chanced to open a drawer and take in your
hand, for amusement's sake, some old family daguerreotypes. It is easy
enough to laugh at the stiff positions and droll costumes; but
suddenly you find an old likeness of yourself, and walk away with it,
self-consciously, to the window, with a pretence of seeking a better
light on the quick-reflecting, faintly impressed plate. Your earlier,
half-forgotten self confronts you seriously; the youth whose hopes
you have disappointed, or whose dreams you have turned into
realities. You search the young face; perhaps you even look deep into
the eyes of your own babyhood to discover your dawning consciousness;
to answer back to yourself, as it were, from the known and discovered
countries of that baby's future. There is a fascination in reading
character backwards. You may or may not be able easily to revive early
thoughts and impressions, but with an early portrait in your hand they
do revive again in spite of you; they seem to be living in the
pictured face to applaud or condemn you. In these old pictures exist
our former selves. They wear a mystical expression. They are still
ourselves, but with unfathomable eyes staring back to us out of the
strange remoteness of our outgrown youth.

  "Surely I have known before
    Phantoms of the shapes ye be--
  Haunters of another shore
    'Leaguered by another sea."

It is somehow far simpler and less startling to examine a series of
portraits of some other face and figure than one's own. Perhaps it is
most interesting to take those of some person whom the whole world
knows, and whose traits and experiences are somewhat comprehended. You
say to yourself, "This was Nelson before ever he fought one of his
great sea battles; this was Washington, with only the faintest trace
of his soldiering and the leisurely undemanding aspect of a country
gentleman!" _Human Documents_--the phrase is Daudet's, and tells its
own story, with no need of additional attempts of suggestiveness.

It would seem to be such an inevitable subject for sermon writing,
that no one need be unfamiliar with warnings, lest our weakness and
wickedness leave traces upon the countenance--awful, ineffaceable
hieroglyphics, that belong to the one universal primitive language of
mankind. Who cannot read faces? The merest savage, who comprehends no
written language, glances at you to know if he may expect friendliness
or enmity, with a quicker intelligence than your own.

The lines that are written slowly and certainly by the pen of
character, the deep mark that sorrow once left, or the light
sign-manual of an unfading joy, there they are and will remain; it is
at length the aspect of the spiritual body itself, and belongs to the
unfolding and existence of life. We have never formulated a science
like palmistry on the larger scale that this character-reading from
the face would need; but to say that we make our own faces, and,
having made them, have made pieces of immortality, is to say what
seems trite enough. A child turns with quick impatience and
incredulity from the dull admonitions of his teachers, about goodness
and good looks. To say, "Be good and you will be beautiful," is like
giving him a stone for a lantern. Beauty seems an accident rather than
an achievement, and a cause instead of an effect; but when childhood
has passed, one of the things we are sure to have learned, is to read
the sign-language of faces, and to take the messages they bring.
Recognition of these things is sure to come to us more and more by
living; there is no such thing as turning our faces into unbetraying
masks. A series of portraits is a veritable Human Document, and the
merest glance may discover the progress of the man, the dwindled or
developed personality, the history of a character.

These sentences are written merely as suggestions, and from the point
of view of morals; there is also the point of view of heredity, and
the curious resemblance between those who belong to certain
professions. Just what it is that makes us almost certain to recognize
a doctor or a priest at first glance is too subtle a question for
discussion here. Some one has said that we usually arrive, in time, at
the opposite extreme to those preferences and opinions which we hold
in early life. The man who breaks away from conventionalities, ends by
returning to them, or out of narrow prejudices and restrictions grows
towards a late and serene liberty. These changes show themselves in
the face with amazing clearness, and it would seem also, that even
individuality sways us only for a time; that if we live far into the
autumnal period of life we lose much of our individuality of looks,
and become more emphatically members of the family from which we
spring. A man like Charles the First was already less himself than he
was a Stuart; we should not fail in instances of this sort, nor seek
far afield. The return to the type compels us steadily; at last it has
its way. Very old persons, and those who are dangerously ill, are
often noticed to be curiously like their nearest of kin, and to have
almost visibly ceased to be themselves.

All time has been getting our lives ready to be lived, to be shaped
as far as may be by our own wills, and furthered by that conscious
freedom that gives us to be ourselves. You may read all these in any
Human Document--the look of race, the look of family, the look that
is set like a seal by a man's occupation, the look of the spirit's
free or hindered life, and success or failure in the pursuit of
goodness--they are all plain to see. If we could read one human face
aright, the history not only of the man, but of humanity itself, is
written there.


GENERAL LEW WALLACE was born in Brookville, Indiana, in 1827. After
receiving a common school education, he studied law. He distinguished
himself in the Civil War, and was made a brigadier-general. After the
war he practised law in Crawfordsville, Indiana. A few years later he
was for a time Governor of New Mexico. From 1878-81 he was Governor of
Utah, and from 1881-85 Minister to Turkey. His first book, "A Fair
God," appeared in 1877. "Ben Hur," published in 1880, has reached a
sale of several hundred thousand copies. General Wallace's home is in
Crawfordsville, Indiana.

WILLIAM DEAN HOWELLS was born in Martin's Ferry, Ohio, March 11, 1837.
His father was the editor of a country newspaper, and young Howells
learned the printer's trade. He began to write at an early age. At
nineteen he was Columbus correspondent of the "Cincinnati Gazette,"
and at twenty-two, news editor of the "Ohio State Journal." A campaign
"Life of Lincoln," gained him the consulship at Venice, where he
seriously devoted his leisure hours to literature. "Venetian Life"
gave him reputation. On his return to America in 1865, he wrote for
newspapers and magazines. In 1866 Mr. Howells joined the editorial
staff of "The Atlantic." In 1872 he became the editor. About this time
the success of "Their Wedding Journey" determined his career as a

HJALMAR HJORTH BOYESEN was born at Frederiksværn, Norway, September
23, 1848. When twenty-one years of age he came to the United States.
In 1874 he was appointed professor of German at Cornell University,
and is now professor of Germanic languages and literature at Columbia
College, New York. It was in the early seventies that Professor
Boyesen's name began to appear in the magazines. In 1873 he published
his first long romance, "Gunnar," and other novels followed, well
known to the reading world.

ALPHONSE DAUDET was born at Nîmes, May 13, 1840. His early life was
full of hardship and deprivation. In 1857 he arrived in Paris, with
some manuscript poems and no money. He almost starved, but kept on
writing and hoping. His volume of verse, "Les Amoureuses" (1858),
attracted some attention. He persisted, took to writing novels, and
achieved greatness. The story of his life and struggles, as told by
himself, will be given in an early number of MCCLURE'S MAGAZINE.


_Born in Brookville, Indiana, April 10, 1827._

[Illustration: AGE 35. 1862. MAJOR-GENERAL OF VOLUNTEERS.]

[Illustration: AGE 40. 1867. GOVERNOR OF NEW MEXICO.]

[Illustration: AGE 50. 1877. GOVERNOR OF UTAH.]



[Illustration: AGE 18. 1855. RESIDENCE, JEFFERSON, OHIO.]

[Illustration: AGE 23. 1860. NEWS EDITOR OF "OHIO STATE JOURNAL."]

[Illustration: AGE 28. MAY, 1865. VENICE, "VENETIAN LIFE."]

[Illustration: AGE 25. 1862. CONSUL AT VENICE.]

[Illustration: AGE 32. 1869. CAMBRIDGE, MASS. "SUBURBAN SKETCHES."]

[Illustration: AGE 41. 1878. BELMONT, MASS. "THE LADY OF THE AROOSTOOK."]

[Illustration: AGE 47. 1884. BOSTON, MASS. "THE RISE OF SILAS LAPHAM."]

[Illustration: AGE 50. 1887. BOSTON. "APRIL HOPES."]

[Illustration: AGE 53. 1890. BOSTON. "THE SHADOW OF A DREAM."]


_Born September 23, 1847, Frederiksværn, Norway._

[Illustration: AGE 17. 1865. STUDENT, CHRISTIANIA, NORWAY.]


[Illustration: AGE 22. 1869. CHICAGO. EDITOR OF "FREMAD."]



[Illustration: 1893. THE AUTHOR OF "SOCIAL STRUGGLERS."]


[Illustration: AGE 21, PARIS, 1861. "LETTERS FROM MY MILL."]

[Illustration: AGE 30, PARIS, 1870.]

[Illustration: AGE 35, PARIS, 1875. "FROMONT JEUNE ET RISLER AINÉ."]





The greatest wild animal trader in the world is Karl Hagenbeck of
Hamburg. To hear, therefore, how he captures and transports the brutes
that compose his stock in trade, how he trains them, and some of the
peculiarly strange adventures which have befallen him in dealing with
them, cannot fail to be of interest. A few days ago I went to his
Hamburg menagerie, where, on opening a door, I found myself in a great
shed full of caged wild beasts. As visitors, except those on business,
are not allowed within those notable precincts, my unexpected
appearance excited the cages' occupants to set up a grand concerto of
roars and howls. Awestruck at the sight and sounds, I stood dazed
until suddenly recalled to myself by a Nubian lion, who laid hold of
my cloak-flaps with unsheathed claws. At once I leaped forward, while
the beast retired snarling to the farthest corner of its cage, where
in the dark shadows its eyes glared like two living coals. At this
moment Mr. Hagenbeck came forward and gave me a hearty welcome,
coupled with a word of warning against venturing too near the cages.
He is a tall man, singularly pleasant looking, with keen eyes and a
decisive manner. Later we sat in his office, and there I heard many
incidents of the interesting life which he has led for so many years.

"My father," said he, "who started in life as a fish dealer in this
very town, never dreamed that he would one day be the founder of the
greatest menagerie in the world. But it chanced that, in the year
1848, some fishermen, who usually traded with him, brought him some
seals which they had caught in their sturgeon nets. They were fine
animals, and he could not help being delighted with them, and
straightway resolved to take them to Berlin. There he opened a small
exhibition in Kroll's Gardens, charging an admission fee. But there
came a revolution; business was at a standstill, and he was glad
enough to get rid of the seals for a small sum of money, and to return
to his fish-dealer's shop in Hamburg. But he was bitten with the
wild-beast fever; live animals had more attractions for him than dead
fish, and so he told the fishermen that he would always be ready to
buy any queer animals they might choose to bring him. A short time
after that a sailor from a whaling vessel brought him a polar bear;
this he exhibited here in Hamburg. It was a great novelty, and the
people flocked in crowds to see it. From that time forward, sailors
from all parts of the world would bring him animals for sale--monkeys,
parrots, deer, snakes, and so on; once a young lion. Gradually he got
together quite a small menagerie, but I am bound to say that at first
there was not much profit in the business. When I left school in 1859,
at the age of fifteen, father asked me which of his two callings I
would rather choose as mine. Of course, being a boy, I chose the wild
beasts. He gave me a hundred and fifty pounds to spend as best I could
in buying animals. Fortune favored me from the start. I made some
capital bargains, increased the business rapidly, and in 1866 father
handed the whole business over to me."


At this moment my eye fell upon a large photograph of the celebrated
Mr. P. T. Barnum, which hung upon the wall. Mr. Hagenbeck, noting the
direction of my gaze, said: "I suppose you know who that is?"

I replied, "Why, it's P. T. Barnum."

"Exactly," said he. "I was walking about the menagerie one day in
1872, when Mr. Barnum was announced. He said: 'I've just come to have
a look round. I've got an hour or two to spare, and I thought I might
as well spend it here as anywhere else.' Well, sir," continued Mr.
Hagenbeck, smiling at the recollection of his first momentous
interview with the great showman, "he stayed fourteen days, and he
filled two big note-books before he left me. He was delighted with all
he saw, and still more so with all I told him. I spoke about ostrich
riding, suggested that it would be a splendid thing if he got up a
regular wild-beast hunt in his hippodrome. He was immensely taken with
the idea, and wanted me to join him as partner, but this I was not
able to do. For many years I supplied him with his animals."

"Why," I said, "Mr. Hagenbeck, that opened up quite a new field."

"Exactly," he replied. "The training of wild animals is now one of
the most important parts of my business. I also undertake the
establishment of menageries all over the world. I supply people with
their buildings, with their animals, with their keepers, with their
trainers. Take, for instance, the Zoölogical Gardens at Cincinnati. I
filled them from top to bottom. I recently made one in Rio Janeiro."


"And can you tell me anything about the prices of wild animals, Mr.
Hagenbeck?" said I.

"Well," he replied, "prices differ from time to time, according to the
fashion; for I can assure you that there is as much fashion in wild
animals as there is in ladies' dresses. Prices are also rising and
falling, according as the market supply is high or low. I can remember
that once I sold in one day a cargo of African beasts for thirty
thousand dollars. A full grown hippopotamus is now worth £1,000. A
two-horned rhinoceros, which was worth £600 in 1883, cannot now be
obtained at any price. An Indian tapir costs £500, an American tapir
£150. Elephants vary according to size and training, from £250 to
£500. A good forest-bred lion, full grown, will fetch from £150 to
£200, according to species. Tigers run from £100 to £150, according to
their variety. Do you know," he continued, "that there are five
varieties of royal tigers? And, besides them, there are the tigers
which come from Java, Sumatra, Penang, and even from the wastes of
Siberia, Snakes are very much down in the market at present. Those
which formerly fetched £5 or £10, you can now get for £2. Very large
ones sometimes run up to £50. Leopards £30. Black panthers £40 to £60.
Striped and spotted panthers £25. Jaguars run from £30 to £100. A good
polar bear will fetch from £30 to £40. Brown bears from £6 to 10£.
Black American bears from £10 to £20. A sloth from Thibet £25 to £30.
Monkeys run from six shillings apiece. They are most expensive in the
spring, when they will sometimes fetch as much as £1 6_s_. Giraffes
are altogether out of the market," continued Mr. Hagenbeck with a
sigh, "for there are none now to be obtained. I have sold one as low
as £60, whilst the last one which I sold, four years ago, to the
Brazils, I was paid upwards of £1,100 for.

"And now you might just have a look round at some of the animals.
Here," said he, as we stood before a cage of very charming monkeys,
"are some very clever little animals. They can ride horses in a
circus, they jump through hoops; in fact, they are trained exactly
like human beings, and can do almost everything but talk. I have
just sent people to Abyssinia to fetch me some big silver-gray
lion-monkeys, sometimes called hamadryads. I said just now,"
continued Mr. Hagenbeck, with a laugh, "that monkeys can't talk; and
yet I must believe in Professor Garner, for you give me any monkey,
you like to name, and I'll guarantee I'll make it talk. But you can
only do it by imitating them closely. Take, for instance, that
chimpanzee over there," continued the clever trainer, pointing to a
little animal fast asleep on a crossbar. "Now listen," he went on,
making a peculiar noise with his lips. At once the animal woke up,
jabbered a reply in chimpanzee, flew to the bars of the cage, put his
tiny paw out ready for the nuts which he knew were forthcoming.
"There," said Mr. Hagenbeck, "don't tell me monkeys can't talk."

A little farther on we came across a tiny baby elephant, two feet nine
inches in height. It was as black as coal, and had just arrived from
Singapore. It was very playful, but when I began pushing it about, as
one might roll a big beer barrel, it indulged in a fretful growling,
which much amused us. Seven beautiful elephants stood in one big
stable together, and as I admired their huge proportions and wondered
at their entire gentleness, I said to Mr. Hagenbeck, "Is it true, as
the great English circus proprietor George Sanger told me last summer,
that the Asiatic elephant is far more intelligent than its African

"Certainly not," replied Mr. Hagenbeck. "The African elephants are
just as clever, just as gentle, just as intelligent as the Asiatic
elephants. There's no difference between them; and I ought to know,
for I have had to do with them for thirty years, and in only one year
I have imported as many as seventy-six of them."


Karl Hagenbeck and I stood in his beautiful gardens, beside the
enclosure in which the lions and tigers spend the long, hot summer
days so frequent in Hamburg. Most artistically this enclosure has been
made to resemble an African desert. In the foreground there are bushes
and a few small palm trees, whilst in the far-off distance there rise,
towering to a blue tropical sky, grim mountains and sun-stricken
rocks. There is thus conveyed to the mind an impression of the great
Nubian deserts--an impression whose force and reality is strengthened
by the appearance of the wild beasts themselves, basking in the heat
of the sun, or restlessly prowling about the enclosure.

"I should very much like to hear, Mr. Hagenbeck," said I, "everything
you can tell me of the way in which your wild beasts are captured."

"Well," he replied, "I will tell you as much as I can. Let us begin
with the animals from the deserts of Nubia, for I have hunting parties
all over the world. I send out a special messenger, who goes provided
with a lot of silver coin. Nubians know my courier, who goes on ahead
of this special messenger. When the courier reaches Suakim, it is
announced that my messenger is coming, and a great _fête_ is
proclaimed. Guns are fired off, tom-toms are beaten, and for at least
two days before he arrives there are the greatest rejoicings. Then the
people go out to meet him, and conduct him with great state to a place
on the borders of the desert where they have built a zereba. My
messenger then gives advance money to the hunters, who go into
Abyssinia to buy horses for the great hunt. As soon as the whole party
is collected, business begins. They are armed with assegais and long
hunting-swords like the old German swords. They are as broad as your
hand, sharp at both ends, and two handled. Men upon fast horses hunt
up the animals. Large animals, such as elephants and rhinoceroses,
with sucklings, are the best game. The hunters, forming a circle,
follow them. Having caught a rhinoceros with its young one, a man
jumps down from his horse and cuts the old beast in a vein, whilst
some of the other men chase another animal in front to distract
attention. Then the black fellow lets go the big rhinoceros, catches
the little one, ties its legs, and after it has calmed down brings it
to my collector, who is waiting for him in the zereba. The old one is
killed, skinned, and eaten. The natives make their best shields from
the hide. Elephants and giraffes are hunted in the same manner. I
have been describing to you chiefly the old method of hunting animals
in Nubia. Of late years they generally use guns. The young animals are
always brought up with goat's milk."

At this moment we were passing a large cage full of the finest lions I
had ever seen. As soon as they caught sight of Mr. Hagenbeck, they
began to purr loudly, and when he spoke, came up to the bars of the
cage to be stroked and petted.

"There," said my host, "these are some very beautiful lions from
Nubia. You can see that they are in perfect condition, and this is
chiefly owing to the fact that they are being trained for their
performances. There is nothing that keeps them in good health so much
as constant exercise; that, I think," added Mr. Hagenbeck, with a
laugh, "is a very good argument in favor of training wild beasts, and
goes a long way to prove that there really is very little cruelty in
it. Now, I'll tell you how lions are caught in the Nubian desert. The
Kauri negroes, when my messenger arrives, form parties to go in search
of young lions. When they discover the spoor of a lioness, they creep
about the bush until they find the animal's lair. It is usually one
man alone who does this, and he has only a bundle of assegais under
his left arm. Before the lioness can spring upon him, she has these
spears in her body. Look at this skin," continued Mr. Hagenbeck,
pointing to a magnificent tawny skin hanging up in the hall. "There,"
said he, "that skin has no less than twenty-four holes in it. The poor
mother made a brave fight for her young ones. Well," continued Mr.
Hagenbeck, "when the old lioness is killed he takes the young ones to
the zereba. The little lions are suckled by goats three times a day,
and get quite fond of their foster-mothers.

"Leopards and hyenas are caught in Nubia in traps which are made out
of wood or cut out of stone in the mountains. These traps are baited
with meat, and catch the big cats precisely as a mouse-trap catches a
mouse. Once trapped, the hunters can tie the creature's legs, and bear
it in triumph to the zereba."

"And how are the Asiatic animals caught?" I asked Mr. Hagenbeck.

"Well," he replied, "very much the same method is pursued there that
we adopt in Africa. For instance, in Borneo and Java, animals are
caught in trapfalls and pitfalls, and some in huge mouse-traps. In
these we often catch full-grown tigers, black panthers, and leopards.
In the pitfalls we find two horned rhinoceroses and saddlebacked
tapirs. The animals, running through the forest, run over these
pitfalls and drop in. The greater part of these unfortunately die
directly after they are caught; some kill themselves in their
excitement, others won't feed, and so pine away. A rhinoceros or a
tapir dies because it is often hurt internally, although we frequently
do not discover that they have been hurt until they have been with us
for one or two months. I can remember that I once imported seven big
rhinoceroses, and I sold only one of them, as the other six died.
Bengal tigers are caught young, brought up by the natives in much the
same way as the young lions in Africa, on milk and fowls. Most of
these come by way of Calcutta."

Standing in front of a great glass cage full of snakes, I said to Mr.
Hagenbeck: "Now, how do you manage to get hold of these reptiles? They
must be very dangerous."

"Ah!" he replied, with a thoughtful look, "I'll tell you later on one
or two stories of dreadful adventures that I myself have had with
snakes. In the meantime this is the way they are caught in India. In
the dry season the jungle is set on fire. As the snakes run out in all
directions, they are caught by the natives with long sticks having a
hoop at the end, to which is attached a big bag, a sort of exaggerated
butterfly net. After that the reptiles are packed in sacks made of
matting, which are fastened to long bamboos, and carried to Calcutta
on the shoulders of the natives. When Calcutta is reached, they are
packed in big boxes, from twelve to sixteen in a box, that is when
they are only eight or ten feet long; big snakes, from fourteen to
sixteen feet in length, are only packed from two to three in a box.
They are then sent direct to Europe without food or water on the
journey, for they require neither. The principal thing is to keep them
warm. Cold gives them mouth disease, which is certain death. I
remember once," continued Mr. Hagenbeck, "that I had one hundred and
sixty-two snakes reach London in perfect condition; a violent
snow-storm then came on, and when the boxes were opened in Hamburg
every snake was dead.

"The majority of my Asiatic elephants come from Ceylon, although a few
of them are exported from Burma. I remember one year there was a great
demand in the American market for Asiatic elephants; Barnum and
Forepaugh each wanted twelve. I couldn't get enough from Burma, so
sent direct to Ceylon, and got no less than sixty-seven elephants, all
of which I disposed of in the next twelve months. Most of these were
caught by noosing. This is done by Afghans who take out a license from
the Ceylon Government. They go out with dogs, find a herd, follow it
up, and drive the elephants into different flights; they then give
their attention to the younger elephants. Each man has a long raw-hide
rope with a noose in the end of it. He chases an elephant, throws the
noose round its hind legs, and follows it until a tree is reached,
round which the line is fastened. When the elephant drops down in
despair, the rope is fastened round its other legs, and it is left for
several days until calmed down; it is then taken and easily tamed. I
can well remember," said Mr. Hagenbeck, "how interested Prince
Bismarck was when I told all about the capture of my elephants.

"I was sitting in my room one day, when a servant came in and told me
that he believed that Prince Bismarck was in the menagerie. I went
out, and as soon as I saw his tall, erect figure and white moustache,
I knew it was the great man himself. I never came across so
intelligent a man, or one who asked so many questions. I should think
he must be something like your Gladstone."

"And how did you first start buying animals on such a big scale, Mr.
Hagenbeck?" said I.

"Well," he replied, "it was in this way. In 1863 the first big lot of
animals that ever appeared in Europe at one time were brought over by
an Italian named Casanova. He couldn't sell them, and we had not the
money to buy them, so they were sold to a menagerie at Kreutzburg,
then the biggest in Germany. Next year Casanova came over with a few
from Egypt, which I bought for the Dresden Zoo. This was the
beginning of the African business. I then gave Casanova a big order,
and arranged that he should bring over elephants, giraffes, and young
lions at a fixed price. It's always cheaper," added Mr. Hagenbeck,
with a laugh, "to get your dinner at the _table d'hôte_ than by the
card, and I thought it would be cheaper and better to get all these
animals in one lot. Well, in 1866 he returned with a large cargo, in
which there were seven African elephants. At that time an African
elephant was a great novelty, both in Europe and in America. I sold
these elephants to America, where they excited great interest, as they
were the first African elephants that had ever been seen in that
country." As we were going back to Mr. Hagenbeck's office he pointed
out to me some very beautiful zebu bulls which he was going to send
out to South America to be used for agricultural and breeding
purposes. "There," said he, "you can see those animals nowhere else in
Europe except in my place. I got them from Central India; I have been
after them for ten years, and succeeded in getting them only two years
ago." Just then we passed a slaughter-yard, where a couple of horses
were being cut up for the carnivorous animals.

"It must be a very difficult matter," said I, "to know how to feed all
these animals properly."

"I should think it was," he replied. "Animals are most dainty and
delicate as regards their food. Now, for instance, those lions and
tigers which were exhibiting at the Crystal Palace last year were fed
on such bad food that they were quite ill when they came back here.
Besides, a number of young animals were seized with what appeared to
be cholera. I lost three thousand pounds' worth of them in three
weeks. It is a very anxious business, indeed, I can tell you."

  NOTE.--In the July number will be published an article on "The
  Training of Wild Animals," which includes a description of a
  special performance given by Mr. Hagenbeck, at which Mr.
  Blathwayt, the writer of the articles, was the only spectator.




By mandate of law, Rick wore a muzzle, not often on his nose, but
generally hanging under his chin. It was not because his present
character was a vicious one that Rick was thus distinguished, but
owing to an awkward circumstance in early life. For Rick had been
tried in a court of law for the crime of murder, convicted, and
sentenced to death. I believe Canton Grison is the only province in
Switzerland where the law enforcing capital punishment has not been
repealed; and in Canton Grison it applies to beasts as well as men.

Rick first appeared, a starveling puppy with a large frame and weak,
shambling legs, before the windows of a charitable Scotswoman, who was
a lover of dogs and a person of sensibility. Rick, whatever his
intellectual shortcomings, was a shrewd judge of human nature, and
knew where to find a sure welcome. Naturally he soon discovered the
hour for meals, and seldom failed to be on hand in good season. Once
he found the glass door shut through which he was accustomed to enter.
Spectators on the other side saw his discomfiture, but, before they
could reach the door, Master Rick had lifted the latch and was walking
triumphantly in. A later friend of his declared that, when he asked,
"What has become of that enormous dish of meat?" Rick tipped him an
arch wink and touched his corpulent stomach with a hind paw. Another
instance of his supposed intelligence was his habit of accompanying
intending customers to the confectioner's shop, where he gorged
himself at their expense. This indulgence in sweets, and his visits to
adjacent villages, where he dined at the hotels _à la carte_, his
bills to be sent to the Belvedere, induced early obesity, which was
particularly observable in his great tail. I always thought the
general belief in Rick's mental capacity rested on insufficient
grounds. I have lived too much with dogs not to know a dull fellow,
though kindly, when I see him; but, as an individual, I loved Rick,
and could not deny him a certain charm. The fact that one day Rick
(who at that time belonged to a butcher) did not put in an appearance
simultaneously with the ringing of the luncheon-bell caused the
charitable Scotswoman misgivings. She should have known him better.
Fortunately she happened to glance out of the window in the nick of
time, for there was poor Rick, flat on his side, his head turned
piteously towards the door of his friend, being dragged along the road
at the tail of a terrible cart--the cart of a man who bought dead and
living cats and dogs for the sake of their skins. A maid was hastily
despatched to the rescue, and Rick was bought for the price of his
hide. His trials were over (it was little he cared for the trial and
sentence), for he was now adopted by the Hotel Belvedere.

Here he passed several uneventful, greedy years, until the day when
the Belvedere was startled by the appearance of the officers of the
law with an official document--a summons for Rick. How it was served I
cannot imagine, but Rick was cited to appear, on a given date, at the
Rathhaus, under the appellation of Tiger Hund. Tiger Hund was a fine,
dashing name, but hardly applicable to Rick, who had more of the
characteristics of the sheep than of the tiger. The two leading
hotels, the Belvedere and the Bual, were shaken to their base by the
threatened danger to Rick. Foreign counsel was appointed to plead his
cause; I cannot now remember whether the chosen advocate was Herr
Coester of the Belvedere, or Mr. J. Addington Symonds of the Bual.
One, I know, appeared for Rick at the trial; while the other, after
conviction, got up a petition for his pardon.

The eventful day arrived; the learned gentleman, honest Rick at his
heels, took his way to the ancient Rathhaus, the gloomy aspect of
whose exterior, with its narrow, barred, windowy and high-pitched roof
under the eaves of which were many a row of wolves' heads now dried
into mummies, should have thrilled with apprehension the heart of the
least imaginative dog. But Rick, poor innocent, trotted through the
portals as he would have trotted into the confectioner's, and curled
himself up for a nap at the feet of his counsel.

His affection for the accused, and the sympathy of the large audience
assembled to hear his pleading, inspired the learned gentleman with
unwonted eloquence. The only creature unconcerned was Rick, who,
having finished his nap, thought it a fitting occasion to make a
little excursion into the next canton.

After a brilliant peroration in which he dilated on the fidelity of
the accused, who, he asserted, never left the Hotel Belvedere except
in company with some of the guests, Rick's advocate wound up with
these words: "Behold at my feet the Tiger Hund!" But, alas! Rick was
not at his feet, nor could he be found in any of his usual haunts,
though eager searchers beat the precincts for him. And so, through
Rick's own fault, his case was lost and his friends put to open shame.
Sentence of death was passed in the absence of the culprit, and things
for a time looked black for Rick. Strenuous efforts, however, were
made to secure a pardon; and finally, after the presentation of a
petition pleading for mercy, numerously signed by the foreign and
native residents, the magistrate was induced to commute the sentence
to muzzlement for life. I cannot myself believe that Rick had the
courage to attack a sheep, even in company. I know that his first
meeting with a donkey threw him into such fits of terror that his
reason was despaired of for days.





Thomas A. Edison, when he was congratulated upon his forty-sixth
birthday, declared that he did not measure his life by years, but by
achievements or by campaigns; and he then confessed that he had
planned ahead many campaigns, and that he looks forward to no period
of rest, believing that for him, at least, the happiest life is a life
of work. In speaking of his campaigns Mr. Edison said: "I do not
regard myself as a pure scientist, as so many persons have insisted
that I am. I do not search for the laws of nature, and have made no
great discoveries of such laws. I do not study science as Newton and
Kepler and Faraday and Henry studied it, simply for the purpose of
learning truth. I am only a professional inventor. My studies and
experiments have been conducted entirely with the object of inventing
that which will have commercial utility. I suppose I might be called a
scientific inventor, as distinguished from a mechanical inventor,
although really there is no distinction."

When Mr. Edison was asked about his campaigns and those achievements
by which he measured his life, he said that in the past there had been
first the stock-ticker and the telephone, upon the latter of which he
worked very hard. But he regarded the greatest of his achievements, in
the early part of his career, as the invention of the phonograph.
"That," said he, "was an invention pure and simple. No suggestion of
it, so far as I know, had ever been made; and it was a discovery made
by accident, while experimenting upon another invention, that led to
the development of the phonograph.

"My second campaign was that which resulted in the invention of the
incandescent lamp. Of course, an incandescent lamp had been suggested
before. There had been abortive attempts to make them, even before I
knew anything about telegraphing. The work which I did was to make an
incandescent lamp which was commercially valuable, and the courts have
recently sustained my claim to priority of invention of this lamp. I
worked about three years upon that. Some of the experiments were very
delicate and very difficult; some of them needed help which was very
costly. That so far has been, I suppose, my chief achievement. It
certainly was the first one which made me independent, and left me
free to begin other campaigns without the necessity of calling for
outside capital, or of finding my invention subjected to the mysteries
of Wall Street manipulation."

The hint contained in Mr. Edison's reference to Wall Street, and the
mysteries of financiering which prevail there, led naturally enough to
a question as to Mr. Edison's future purpose with regard to
capitalists, and he said:

"In my future campaigns I expect myself to control absolutely such
inventions as I make. I am now fortunate enough to have capital of my
own, and that I shall use in these campaigns. The most important of
the campaigns I have in mind is one in which I have now been engaged
for several years. I have long been satisfied that it was possible to
invent an ore-concentrator which would vastly simplify the prevailing
methods of extracting iron from earth and rock, and which would do it
so much cheaper than those processes as to command the market. Of
course I refer to magnetic iron ore. Some of the New Jersey mountains
contain practically inexhaustible stores of this magnetic ore, but it
has been expensive to mine. I was able to secure mining options upon
nearly all these properties, and then I began the campaign of
developing an ore-concentrator which would make these deposits
profitably available. This iron is unlike any other iron ore. It takes
four tons of the ore to produce one ton of pure iron, and yet I saw,
some years ago, that if some method of extracting this ore could be
devised, and the mines controlled, an enormously profitable business
would be developed, and yet a cheaper iron ore--cheaper in its first
cost--would be put upon the market. I worked very hard upon this
problem, and in one sense successfully, for I have been able by my
methods to extract this magnetic ore at comparatively small cost, and
deliver from my mills pure iron bricklets. Yet I have not been
satisfied with the methods; and some months ago I decided to abandon
the old methods and to undertake to do this work by an entirely new
system. I had some ten important details to master before I could get
a perfect machine, and I have already mastered eight of them. Only two
remain to be solved; and when this work is complete, I shall have, I
think, a plant and mining privileges which will outrank the
incandescent lamp as a commercial venture, certainly so far as I am
myself concerned. Whatever the profits are, I shall myself control
them, as I have taken no capitalists in with me in this scheme."

Mr. Edison was asked if he was willing to be more explicit respecting
this invention, but he declined to be, further than to say: "When the
machinery is done as I expect to develop it, it will be capable of
handling twenty thousand tons of ore a day with two shifts of men,
five in a shift. That is to say, ten workmen, working twenty hours a
day in the aggregate, will be able to take this ore, crush it, reduce
the iron to cement-like proportions, extract it from the rock and
earth, and make it into bricklets of pure iron, and do it so cheaply
that it will command the market for magnetic iron."

Mr. Edison, in speaking of this campaign, referred to it as though it
was practically finished; and it was evident in the conversation that
already his mind turns to a new campaign, which he will take up as
soon as his iron-ore concentrator is complete and its work can be left
to competent subordinates.

He was asked if he would be willing to say what he had in mind for the
next campaign, and he replied: "Well, I think as soon as the ore
concentrating business is developed and can take care of itself, I
shall turn my attention to one of the greatest problems that I have
ever thought of solving, and that is, the direct control of the energy
which is stored up in coal, so that it may be employed without waste
and at a very small margin of cost. Ninety per cent. of the energy
that exists in coal is now lost in converting it into power. It goes
off in heat through the chimneys of boiler-rooms. You perceive it when
you step into a room where there is a furnace and boiler; it is also
greatly wasted in the development of the latent heat which is created
by the change from water to steam. Now that is an awful waste, and
even a child can see that if this wastage can be saved, it will result
in vastly cheapening the cost of everything which is manufactured by
electric or steam power. In fact, it will vastly cheapen the cost of
all the necessaries and luxuries of life, and I suppose the results
would be of mightier influence upon civilization than the development
of the steam-engine and electricity have been. It will, in fact, do
away with steam-engines and boilers, and make the use of steam power
as much of a tradition as the stage-coach now is.

"It would enable an ocean steamship of twenty thousand horse-power to
cross the ocean faster than any of the crack vessels now do, and
require the burning of only two hundred and fifty tons of coal instead
of three thousand, which are now required; so that, of course, the
charges for freight and passenger fares would be greatly reduced. It
would enormously lessen the cost of manufacturing and of traffic. It
would develop the electric current directly from coal, so that the
cost of steam-engines and boilers would be eliminated. I have thought
of this problem very much, and I have already my theory of the
experiments, or some of them, which may be necessary to develop this
direct use of all the power that is stored in coal. I can only say
now, that the coal would be put into a receptacle, the agencies then
applied which would develop its energy and save it all, and through
this energy electric power of any degree desired could be furnished.
Yes, it can be done; I am sure of that. Some of the details I have
already mastered, I think; at least, I am sure that I know the way to
go to work to master them. I believe that I shall make this my next
campaign. It may be years before it is finished, and it may not be a
very long time."

Mr. Edison looks farther ahead than this campaign, for he said: "I
think it quite likely that I may try to develop a plan for marine
signalling. I have the idea already pretty well formulated in my mind.
I should use the well-known principle that water is a more perfect
medium for carrying vibrations than air, and should develop
instruments which may be carried upon sea-going vessels, by which they
can transmit or receive, through an international code of signals,
reports within a radius of say ten miles."

Mr. Edison believes that Chicago is to become the London of America
early in the next century, while New York will be its Liverpool, and
he is of opinion that very likely a ship canal may connect Chicago
with tide water, so that it will itself become a great seaport.

There is a common impression that Mr. Edison is an agnostic, but he
denies it; and he said, in closing the conversation, "I tell you that
no person can be brought into close contact with the mysteries of
nature, or make a study of chemistry, without being convinced that
behind it all there is supreme intelligence. I am convinced of that,
and I think that I could, perhaps I may some time, demonstrate the
existence of such intelligence through the operation of these
mysterious laws with the certainty of a demonstration in mathematics."




Professor Graham Bell is not like some pedantic wise men who talk as
if they believed that the end of knowledge in their particular line
had been already reached. On the contrary, this distinguished inventor
is convinced that the discovery and inventions of the past will seem
but trivial things when compared with those which are to come. Nor
does he think that the day of man's greater knowledge is so very far


"I have not the shadow of a doubt"--these are his own words, spoken to
me quite recently at Washington--"that the problem of aerial
navigation will be solved within ten years. That means an entire
revolution in the world's methods of transportation and of making war.
I am able to speak with more authority on this subject from the fact
of being actively associated with Professor Langley of the Smithsonian
Institution in his researches and experiments. I am not at liberty to
speak in detail of these experiments, but will say that the
calculations of scientific men in regard to the amount of power
necessary to maintain an air-ship above the earth have been strangely
erroneous; I may say ridiculously so. According to these, Nature would
have given the birds and insects a muscular force vastly greater and
superior in its qualities to that bestowed upon man. That seems
unreasonable in the first place, when one reflects that man is at the
head of creation, and we have found practically that such is not the
case. The power required to lift and propel an air-ship is very much
less than has been supposed; indeed, Professor Langley concludes that
when the air-ship has once been lifted above the earth to the proper
height, it will be possible to maintain it there with proportionately
no greater effort than that expended by hawks and eagles in sailing
about with extended wings. The air strata will do the bulk of the
lifting, if a small propelling power is provided. Of course, a greater
power will be necessary to lift the air-ship originally, and it may be
some time before the art of managing an air-ship is discovered; but
the final result, I am convinced, will allow men to sail about in the
air as easily and as safely as the birds do. I predict that we will
see the beginning of this modern miracle by the end of the nineteenth

"Of course the air-ship of the future will be constructed without any
balloon attachment. The discovery of the balloon undoubtedly retarded
the solution of the flying problem for over a hundred years. Ever
since the Montgolfiers taught the world how to rise in the air by
means of inflated gas-bags, the inventors working at the problem of
aerial navigation have been thrown on the wrong track. Scientific men
have been wasting their time trying to steer balloons, a thing which
in the nature of the case is impossible to any great extent, inasmuch
as balloons, being lighter than the resisting air, can never make
headway against it. The fundamental principle of aerial navigation is
that the air-ship must be heavier than the air. It is only of recent
years that men capable of studying the problem seriously have accepted
this as an axiom. Electricity in one form or another will undoubtedly
be the motive power for air-ships, and every advance in electrical
knowledge brings us one step nearer to the day when we shall fly. It
would be perfectly possible, to-day, to direct a flying machine by
means of pendant electric wires which would transmit the necessary
current without increasing the load to be borne. Perhaps a feasible
means of propelling such an air-ship would be by a kind of trolley
system where the rod would hang down from the car to the stretched
wire, instead of extending upward. This is an idea which I would
recommend to inventors."

It is most interesting to watch Professor Bell as he talks about the
great inventions which he sees with prophetic eye in store for the
world. He has the happy faculty of expressing great ideas in simple
words, and there is nothing ponderous in his speech. He is as
enthusiastic as a school-boy thinking of the kite he will make as big
as a barn-door. His black eyes flash, and they seem all the blacker
contrasted with his white hair; the words tumble out quickly, and
those who have the good fortune to listen are carried away by the
magnetism of this great inventor.


The mention of electricity brought up new possibilities for future
discovery, some of them so amazing as to almost pass the bounds of
credibility. He said:

"Morse taught the world years ago to write at a distance by
electricity; the telephone enables us to talk at a distance by
electricity; and now scientists are agreed that there is no
theoretical reason why the well-known principles of light should not
be applied in the same way that the principles of sound have been
applied in the telephone, and thus allow us to see at a distance by
electricity. It is some ten years since the scientific papers of the
world were greatly exercised over a report that I had filed at the
Smithsonian Institution a sealed packet supposed to contain a method
of doing this very thing; that is, transmit the vision of persons and
things from one point on the earth to another. As a matter of fact,
there was no truth in the report, but it resulted in stirring up a
dozen scientific men of eminence to come out with statements to the
effect that they too had discovered various methods of seeing by
electricity. That shows what I know to be the case, that men are
working at this great problem in many laboratories, and I firmly
believe it will be solved one day.

"Of course, while the principle of seeing by electricity at a distance
is precisely that applied in the telephone, yet it will be very much
more difficult to construct such an apparatus, owing to the immensely
greater rapidity with which the vibrations of light take place when
compared with the vibrations of sound. It is merely a question,
however, of finding a diaphragm which will be sufficiently sensitive
to receive these vibrations and produce the corresponding electrical


After he had spoken of this idea for some time, Professor Bell stopped
suddenly, and, with an amused twinkle in his eyes, exclaimed: "But
while we are talking of all this, what is to prevent some one from
discovering a way of thinking at a distance by electricity?"

Having said this, the genial professor threw himself back and laughed
heartily at the amazement his words awakened. Was he joking?
Apparently not, for he proceeded seriously to discuss one of the most
astounding conceptions that ever entered an inventor's mind. Thinking
by electricity! Imagine two persons, one thousand or ten thousand
miles apart, placed in communication electrically, in such a way that,
without any spoken word, without sounding-board, key, or any bodily
movement, the one receives instantly the thoughts of the other, and
instantly sends back his own thoughts. The wife in New York knows what
is passing in the brain of her husband in Paris. The husband has the
same knowledge. What boundless possibilities, to be sure, this
arrangement offers for business men, lovers, humorous writers, and the
police authorities!

Preposterous as such an idea appears in its first conception, it
certainly assumes an increasing plausibility when one listens to
Professor Bell's reasoning.

"After all," he says, "what would there be in such a system more
mysterious than in the processes of the mind reader? You substitute a
wire and batteries for a strange-eyed man in a dress suit, that is

The logical basis of Professor Bell's scheme is clear, and its details
quite beautiful in their simplicity, when you admit his major premise.
That premise is that the human brain is merely a kind of electrical
reservoir, and that thinking is nothing more than an electrical
disturbance, like the aurora borealis or the sparks from a Holtz
machine. The nerves are the wires leading from the central battery in
the head. The reasonableness of this assumption is increased when one
remembers that electricity may be made to act upon the nerves, even in
a lifeless body, so as to produce the same muscular contractions which
are produced by the brain force, whatever that may be. We talk of
animal magnetism. What if it were the same as any other kind of
magnetism? If these two forces are identical in one respect, why may
they not be so in all respects? So Professor Bell reasons, and
granting that the human brain is merely a store-house of electricity
for our bodily needs, of electricity not essentially different from
that which we know elsewhere, it must be possible to apply the same
electrical laws to the brain as to any other electric apparatus and to
get similar results.

"Do you begin to see my idea?" said Professor Bell, growing more and
more enthusiastic as he proceeded. Then he gave a rapid outline of
what might be a system of thinking by electricity.

Everyone knows, who knows anything about the subject, that an electric
current passing inside of a coil of wire induces an electric current
in that wire. Now, if the human brain be taken as a battery, then
currents are constantly passing from it to various parts of the body,
and the head may be considered in a state of constant electrical
excitement, the intensity varying with the character of the thought
processes. Now, suppose a coil of wire properly prepared in the shape
of a helmet, and fitted about the head of one person, with wires
attached and connected with a helmet similarly fitted upon the head of
another person at any convenient distance. Every electric current in
the one human battery must induce a current in the coil around the
head, which current must be transmitted to the other coil. This other
coil must then, by the reversed process, induce a current in the brain
within helmet No. 2, and that person must receive some cerebral
sensation. This cerebral sensation might be a thought, and probably
would be, if it turns out to be true that brain force is identical
with electricity. In that case, the thought of the one person would
have produced a thought in the other person, and there is, if we go as
far as this, every reason to believe that it would be the same
thought. Thus the problem of thinking at a distance by electricity
would be solved.

So much for a curious theory of what might be, if so and so were true;
but Professor Bell has not stopped with theories, but has actually
begun to put them to the test. Not that he is over-sanguine as to the
result, but he believes the experiment worth the making, and that
seriously. He has actually had two helmets, such as those described,
constructed, and has begun a series of experiments in his laboratory.
Thus far, the results have been for the most part negative, but not so
much so as to prevent him hoping that more perfect appliances may lead
to something more conclusive. It is true that the thought in one brain
has produced a sensation in the other, through the two helmets, but
what the relation was between the thought and the sensation could not
be determined.


By quick stages the conversation ran into another channel with new
wonders possible in the future. Professor Bell has conceived of a
method of making the deaf hear, which is certainly startling. He
proposes to do away with ears entirely, and produce the sensations of
hearing by direct communication with the brain, through the bones of
the head. As a matter of fact, the brains of deaf people are usually
in a perfectly healthy condition, and the only thing which prevents
them from hearing is some defect in communication with the vibrating
air. If their brains could be excited artificially in the same way
that the brains of ordinary persons are excited by vibrations
communicated through the various chambers and passages of the ear,
then the deaf would hear in the same way that other persons do.

It is, of course, a fact, that hearing in every instance is merely an
illusion of the senses, a sort of tickling of the brain. This tickling
of the brain is ordinarily accomplished by the nerve force passing
from the third chamber of the ear to the brain itself. If this nerve
force is nothing more or less than ordinary electricity, and if
science can train electricity to tickle the brain artificially in the
same way and at the same points that the nerves from the ear usually
do, then the ordinary sensations of hearing must result, whether the
person has ears or not. The problem here is to discover the proper way
of tickling the brain. The gentlemen who seat themselves in
electrocution chairs have their brains tickled in a way which would
not be generally satisfactory.


In his desire to bring relief to the deaf--and his whole life has been
devoted to that object--Professor Bell has begun a series of
remarkable experiments in this line. Some time ago, he determined to
study the effects produced upon the brain by turning an electric
current into it through the side of the head. With this end in view,
he arranged a dynamo machine with a feeble current, giving a varying
number of interruptions per second, and attached one of the poles to a
wet sponge which he placed in one of his ears.

"I risked one of my ears," he said simply, "in making this experiment,
but I could not risk them both, so I held the second pole of the
machine in my hand and turned on the current."

Fortunately no harm resulted, but immediately Professor Bell
experienced the sensation of a pleasant sound whose pitch he was able
to vary by increasing or diminishing the number of interruptions in
the dynamo machine. His assistant standing beside him could detect no
sound at all, so that what Professor Bell heard must have been the
effect of the electric current upon his brain. This effect he found
could be varied by varying the character of the current. Now he argues
that greater variations might be produced in the sounds heard by the
brain if the current turned into it were varied in the proper manner.
For instance, suppose the current from a long distance telephone to be
turned through the head of the deaf mute, a sponge connected with
either pole being placed in each ear. Then let some one talk into the
telephone in the ordinary way, the infinite variations in the current
produced by the voice vibrations being passed into the brain directly.
Is it not conceivable that such a variety of brain sensations or tones
might then be caused in the head of the deaf mute as to make it
possible to establish a system of sound signals, so to speak, which
would be the equivalent of ordinary language? Indeed, is it not
possible that the deaf mute might actually hear spoken words?

Professor Bell's experiments upon himself have been so encouraging as
to make him disposed to try more complete experiments in the same line
upon persons who have lost all sense of hearing, and who would
doubtless be willing to take the inevitable risk for the sake of the
great blessing which a successful issue would bring to them.

We talked a long time about these strange fancies, and finally I said
to Professor Bell:

"But on this principle of brain tickling, what is to prevent a blind
man from seeing by electricity?"

"I do not know that there is anything to prevent it."


  For I dipt into the future, far as human eye could see,
  Saw the Vision of the world, and all the wonder that would be;

  Saw the heavens fill with commerce, argosies of magic sails,
  Pilots of the purple twilight, dropping down with costly bales;

  Heard the heavens fill with shouting, and there rain'd a ghastly dew
  From the nations' airy navies grappling in the central blue;

  Far along the world-wide whisper of the south-wind rushing warm,
  With the standards of the peoples plunging thro' the thunder-storm;

  Till the war-drum throbb'd no longer, and the battle-flags were furl'd
  In the Parliament of man, the Federation of the world.

  There the common sense of most shall hold a fretful realm in awe,
  And the kindly earth shall slumber, lapt in universal law.

  So I triumph'd ere my passion sweeping thro' me left me dry,
  Left me with the palsied heart, and left me with the jaundiced eye;

  Eye, to which all order festers, all things here are out of joint:
  Science moves, but slowly slowly, creeping on from point to point:

  Slowly comes a hungry people, as a lion creeping nigher,
  Glares at one that nods and winks behind a slowly-dying fire.

  Yet I doubt not thro' the ages one increasing purpose runs,
  And the thoughts of men are widen'd with the process of the suns.

By permission from "The Works of Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Poet
Laureate," Macmillan & Co., New York and London, 1893.




I am often asked what is the secret of Mr. Gladstone's extraordinary
length of days and of the perfection of his unvarying health. It may
be partly attributed to the remarkable longevity of the Gladstone
family, a hardy Scottish stock with fewer weak shoots and branches
than perhaps any of the ruling families of England. But it has
depended mainly on Mr. Gladstone himself and on the undeviating
regularity of his habits. Most English statesmen have been either free
livers or with a touch of the _bon vivant_ in them. Pitt and Fox were
men of the first character; Melbourne, Palmerston, and Lord
Beaconsfield were of the last. But Mr. Gladstone is a man who has been
guilty of no excesses, save perhaps in work. He rises at the same hour
every day, uses the same fairly generous, but always carefully
regulated, diet, goes to bed about the same hour, pursues the same
round of work and intellectual and social pleasure. An extraordinarily
varied life is accompanied by a certain rigidity of personal habit I
have never seen surpassed. The only change old age has witnessed has
been that the House of Commons work has been curtailed, and that Mr.
Gladstone has not of late years been seen in the House after the
dinner hour, which lasts from eight till ten, except on nights when
crucial divisions are expected. With the approach of winter and its
accompanying chills, to which he is extremely susceptible, he seeks
the blue skies and dry air of the Mediterranean coasts and of his
beloved Italy. With this exception his life goes on in its pleasant
monotony. At Hawarden, of course, it is simpler and more private than
in London. In town to-day Mr. Gladstone avoids all large parties and
great crushes and gatherings where he may be expected to be either
mobbed or bored or detained beyond his usual bed-time.


Personally Mr. Gladstone is an example of the most winning, the most
delicate, and the most minute courtesy. He is a gentleman of the elder
English school, and his manners are grand and urbane, always stately,
never condescending, and genuinely modest. He affects even the dress
of the old school, and I have seen him in the morning wearing an old
black evening coat, such as Professor Jowett still affects. The
humblest passer-by in Piccadilly, raising his hat to Mr. Gladstone, is
sure to get a sweeping salute in return. This courtliness is all the
more remarkable, because it accompanies and adorns a very strong
temper, a will of iron, and a habit of being regarded for the greater
part of his lifetime as a personal force of unequalled magnitude. Yet
the most foolish, and perhaps one may add the most impertinent, of Mr.
Gladstone's dinner-table questioners is sure of an elaborate reply,
delivered with the air of a student in deferential talk with his
master. To the cloth Mr. Gladstone shows a reverence that occasionally
woos the observer to a smile. The callowest curate is sure of a
respectful listener in the foremost Englishman of the day. On the
other hand, in private conversation the premier does not often brook
contradiction. His temper is high, and though, as George Russell has
said, it is under vigilant control, there are subjects on which it is
easy to arouse the old lion. Then the grand eyes flash, the torrent of
brilliant monologue flows with more rapid sweep, and the dinner table
is breathless at the spectacle of Mr. Gladstone angry. As to his
relations with his family, they are very charming. It is a pleasure to
hear Herbert Gladstone--his youngest, and possibly his favorite
son--speak of "my father." All of them, sons and daughters, are
absolutely devoted to his cause, wrapped up in his personality, and
enthusiastic as to every side of his character. Of children Mr.
Gladstone has always been fond, and he has more than one favorite
among his grandchildren.


Mr. Gladstone's day begins about 7.30, after seven hours and a half of
sound, dreamless sleep, which no disturbing crisis in public affairs
was ever known to spoil. At Hawarden it usually opens with a morning
walk to church, with which no kind of weather--hail, rain, snow, or
frost--is ever allowed to interfere. In his rough slouch hat and gray
Inverness cape, the old man plods sturdily to his devotions. To the
rain, the danger of sitting in wet clothes, and small troubles of this
kind, he is absolutely impervious, and Mrs. Gladstone's solicitude has
never availed to change his lifelong custom in this respect. Breakfast
over, working time commences. I am often astonished at the manner in
which Mr. Gladstone manages to crowd his almost endlessly varied
occupations into the forenoon, for when he is in the country he has
practically no other continuous and regular work-time. Yet into this
space he has to condense his enormous correspondence--for which, when
no private secretary is available, he seeks the help of his sons and
daughters--his political work, and his varied literary pursuits. The
explanation of this extreme orderliness of mind is probably to be
found in his unequaled habit of concentration on the business before
him. As in matters of policy, so in all his private habits, Mr.
Gladstone thinks of one thing and of one thing only at a time. When
home rule was up, he had no eyes or ears for any political subject but
Ireland, of course excepting his favorite excursions into the twin
subjects of Homer and Christian theology. Enter the room when Mr.
Gladstone is reading a book; you may move noisily about the chamber,
ransack the books on the shelves, stir the furniture, but never for
one moment will the reader be conscious of your presence. At Downing
Street, during his earlier ministries, these hours of study were
often, I might say usually, preceded by the famous breakfast at which
the celebrated actor or actress, the rising poet, the well-known
artist, the diplomatist halting on his way from one station of the
kingdom to another, were welcome guests. Madame Bernhardt, Miss Ellen
Terry, Henry Irving, Madame Modjeska, have all assisted at these
pleasant feasts.

[Illustration: HAWARDEN CASTLE.]


Lunch with Mr. Gladstone is a very simple meal which neither at
Hawarden nor Downing Street admits of much form or publicity. The
afternoon which follows is a very much broken and less regular period.
At Hawarden a portion of it is usually spent out of doors. In the old
days it was devoted to the felling of some giant of the woods. Within
the last few years, however, Sir Andrew Clark, Mr. Gladstone's
favorite physician and intimate friend, has recommended that
tree-felling be given over; and now Mr. Gladstone's recreation, in
addition to long walks, in which he still delights, is that of lopping
branches off veterans whose trunks have fallen to younger arms.


Between the afternoon tea and dinner the statesman usually retires
again, and gets through some of the lighter and more agreeable of his
intellectual tasks. He reads rapidly, and I think I should say that,
especially of late years, he does a good deal of skipping. If a book
does not interest him, he does not trouble to read it through. He uses
a rough kind of _memoria technica_ to enable him to mark passages with
which he agrees, from which he dissents, which he desires to qualify,
or which he reserves for future reference. I should say the books he
reads most of are those dealing with theology, always the first and
favorite topic, and the history of Ireland before and after the Act of
Union. Indeed, everything dealing with that memorable period is
greatly treasured. I remember one hasty glance over Mr. Gladstone's
book table in his town house. In addition to the liberal weekly, "The
Speaker," and a few political pamphlets, there were, I should say,
fifteen or twenty works on theology, none of them, as far as I could
see, of first-rate importance. Of science Mr. Gladstone knows little,
and it cannot be said that his interest in it is keen. He belongs, in
a word, to the old-fashioned Oxford ecclesiastical school, using the
controversial weapons which are to be found in the works of Pusey and
of Hurrell Froude. In his reading, when a question of more minute and
out-of-the-way scholarship arises, he appeals to his constant friend
and assistant, Lord Acton, to whose profound learning he bows with a
deference which is very touching to note.


[Illustration: THE LIBRARY.]

Mr. Gladstone's library is not what can be called a select or really
first-rate collection. It comprises an undue proportion of theological
literature, of which he is a large and not over-discriminating buyer.
I doubt, indeed, whether there is any larger private bookbuyer in
England. All the book-sellers send him their catalogues, especially
those of rare and curious books. I have seen many of these lists, with
a brief order in Mr. Gladstone's own handwriting on the flyleaf, with
his tick against twenty or thirty volumes which he desires to buy.
These usually range round classical works, archæology, special periods
of English history, and, above all, works reconciling the Biblical
record with science. Of late, as is fairly well known, Mr. Gladstone
has built himself an octagonal iron house in Hawarden village, a mile
and a half from the castle, for the storage of his specially valuable
books and a collection of private papers which traverse a good many of
the state secrets of the greater part of the century. The importance
of these is great, and the chances are that before Mr. Gladstone dies
they will all be grouped and indexed in his upright, a little crabbed,
but perfectly plain, handwriting. By the way, a great many statements
have been made about Mr. Gladstone's library, and I may as well give
the facts which have never before been made public. His original
library consisted of about twenty-four thousand volumes. In the
seventies, however, he parted with his entire collection of political
works, amounting to some eight thousand volumes, to the late Lord
Wolverton. The remaining fifteen thousand or so are now distributed
between the little iron house to which I have referred, and the
Hawarden library. Curiously enough, Mr. Gladstone is not a worshiper
of books for the sake of their outward adornments. He loves them for
what is inside rather than outside. He even occasionally sells
extremely rare and costly editions for which he has no special use. In
all money matters, indeed, he is a thrifty, orderly Scotchman. He has
never been rich, though his affairs have greatly improved since the
time when in his first premiership he had to sell his valuable
collection of china.


Dinner with Mr. Gladstone is the stately ceremonial meal which it has
become to the upper and upper-middle class Englishman. Mr. Gladstone
invariably dresses for it, wearing the high crest collar which Harry
Furniss has immortalized, and a cutaway coat which strikes one as of a
slightly old-fashioned pattern. His digestion never fails him, and he
eats and drinks with the healthy appetite of a man of thirty. A glass
of champagne is agreeable to him, and if he does not take his glass or
two of port at dinner, he makes it up by two or three glasses of
claret, which he considers an equivalent. Oysters he never could
endure, but, like Schopenhauer and Goethe and many another great man,
he is a consistently hearty and unfastidious eater. He talks much in
an animated monologue, though the common complaint that he monopolizes
the conversation is not a just one. You cannot easily turn Mr.
Gladstone into a train of ideas which does not interest him, but he is
a courteous and even eager listener; and if the subject is of general
interest, he does not bear in it any more than the commanding part
which the rest of the company invariably allows him. His speaking
voice is a little gruffer and less musical than his oratorical notes,
which, in spite of the invading hoarseness, still at times ring out
with their old clearness. As a rule he does not talk on politics. On
ecclesiastical matters he is a never wearied disputant. Poetry has
also a singular charm for him, and no modern topic has interested him
more keenly than the discussion as to Tennyson's successor to the
laureateship. I remember that at a small dinner at which I recently
met him, the conversation ran almost entirely on the two subjects of
old English hymns and young English poets. His favorite religious poet
is, I should say, Cardinal Newman, and his favorite hymn, Toplady's
"Rock of Ages," of which his Latin rendering is to my mind far
stronger and purer than the original English. When he is in town, he
dines out almost every day, though, as I have said, he eschews formal
and mixed gatherings, and affects the small and early dinner party at
which he can meet an old friend or two, and see a young face which he
may be interested in seeing. One habit of his is quite unvarying. He
likes to walk home, and to walk home alone. He declines escort, and
slips away for his quiet stroll under the stars, or even through the
fog and mist on a London winter's night. Midnight usually brings his
busy, happy day to a close. Sleeplessness never has and never does
trouble him, and at eighty-three his nights are as dreamless and
untroubled as those of a boy of ten.


His afternoons when in town and during the season are, of course,
given up pretty exclusively to public business and the House of
Commons, which he usually reaches about four o'clock. He goes by a
side door straight to his private room, where he receives his
colleagues, and hears of endless questions and motions, which fall
like leaves in Vallambrosa around the head of a prime minister.
Probably steps will be taken to remove much of this irksome and
somewhat petty burden from the shoulders of the aged minister. But
leader Mr. Gladstone must and will be at eighty-three, quite as fully
as he was at sixty. Indeed, the complaint of him always has been that
he does too much, both for his own health and the smooth manipulation
of the great machine which, as was once remarked, creaks and moves
rather lumberingly under his masterful but over-minute guidance.
During the last two or three years it has been customary for the Whigs
to so arrange that Mr. Gladstone speaks early in the evening. He is
not always able to do this while the Home Rule Bill is under
discussion, but I do not think he will ever again find it necessary to
follow the entire course of a Parliamentary debate. He never needed to
do as much listening from the Treasury Bench as he was wont to do in
his first and second ministries. I do not think that any prime
minister ever spent half as much time in the House of Commons as did
Mr. Gladstone; certainly no one ever made one-tenth part as many
speeches. Indeed, it requires all Mrs. Gladstone's vigilance to avert
the physical strain consequent upon overwork. With this purpose she
invariably watches him in the House of Commons, from a corner seat in
the right hand of the Ladies' Gallery which is always reserved for
her, and which I have never known her to miss occupying on any
occasion of the slightest importance.


I have before me two or three examples of notes of Mr. Gladstone's
speeches; one of them refers to one of the most important of his
addresses on the customs question. It was a long speech, extending,
if I remember rightly, to considerably over an hour. Yet the memoranda
consist purely of four or five sentences of two or three words apiece,
written on a single sheet of note paper, and no hint of the course of
the oration is given. Occasionally, no doubt, especially in the case
of the speech on the introduction of the Home Rule Bill, which was to
my mind the finest Mr. Gladstone has ever delivered, the notes were
rather more extensive than this, but as a rule they are extremely
brief. When Mr. Gladstone addresses a great public meeting, the most
elaborate pains are taken to insure his comfort. He can now only read
the very largest print, and careful and delicate arrangements are made
to provide him with lamps throwing the light on the desk or table near
which he stands. Sir Andrew Clark observes the most jealous
watchfulness over his patient. A curious instance of this occurred at
Newcastle, when Mr. Gladstone was delivering his address to the great
liberal caucus which assembles as the annual meeting of the National
Liberal Federation. Sir Andrew had insisted that the orator should
confine himself to a speech lasting only an hour. Fearing that his
charge would forget all about his promise in the excitement of
speaking, the physician, slipped onto the platform and timed Mr.
Gladstone, watch in hand. The hour passed, but there was no pause in
the torrent of words. Sir Andrew was in despair. At last he pencilled
a note to Mr. Morley, beseeching him to insist upon the speech coming
to an end. But Mr. Morley would not undertake the responsibility of
cutting a great oration, and the result was that Mr. Gladstone stole
another half hour from time and his physician. The next day a friend
of mine went breathlessly up to Sir Andrew, and asked how the
statesman had borne the additional strain. "He did not turn a hair,"
was the reply. Practically the only sign of physical failure which is
apparent in recent speeches has been that the voice tends to break and
die away after about an hour's exercise, and for a moment the sound of
the curiously veiled notes and a glance at the marble pallor of the
face gives one the impression that after all Mr. Gladstone is a very,
very old man. But there is never anything like a total breakdown. And
no one is aware of the enormous stores of physical energy on which the
prime minister can draw, who has not sat quite close to him, and
measured the wonderful breadth of his shoulders and heard his voice
coming straight from his chest in great _bouffées_ of sound. Then you
forget all about the heavy wrinkles in the white face, the scanty
silver hair, and the patriarchal look of the figure before you.




[Illustration: _Sincerely Yours Henry Drummond._]

One of the most humorous sights in nature, less common in America than
Europe, is a snail wandering about with a shell on its back. The
progenitors of snails once lived in the sea, and when they evolved
themselves ashore they carried this relic of the water with them,--an
anomaly which, seen to-day, seems as ridiculous as if one were to meet
an Indian in Paris with his canoe on his back. But there are more
animals besides snails that once lived in the water. If embryology is
any guide to the past, nothing is more certain than that the ancient
progenitors of Man once lived an aquatic life. As the traveller,
wandering in foreign lands, brings back all manner of curios to remind
him where he has been--clubs and spears, clothes and pottery, which
represent the ways of life of those whom he has met, so the body of
Man, returning from its long journey through the animal kingdom,
emerges laden with the spoils of its watery pilgrimage. These relics
are not mere curiosities; they are as real as the clubs and spears,
the clothes and pottery. Like them, they were once a part of life's
vicissitude; they represent organs which have been outgrown; old forms
of apparatus long since exchanged for better, yet somehow not yet
destroyed by the hand of time. The physical body of Man, so great is
the number of these relics, is an old curiosity-shop, a museum of
obsolete anatomies, discarded tools, outgrown and aborted organs. All
other animals also contain among their useful organs a proportion
which are long past their work; and so significant are these rudiments
of a former state of things, that anatomists have often expressed
their willingness to stake the theory of Evolution upon their presence

Prominent among these vestigial structures, as they are called, are
those which smack of the sea. At one time there was nothing else in
the world but water-life; all the land animals are late inventions.
One reason why animals began in the water is that it is easier to live
in the water--anatomically and physiologically cheaper--than to live
on the land. The denser element supports the body better, demanding a
less supply of muscle and bone; and the perpetual motion of the sea
brings the food to the animal, making it unnecessary for the animal to
move to the food. This and other correlated circumstances call for far
less mechanism in the body, and, as a matter of fact, all the simplest
forms of life at the present day are inhabitants of the water.


A successful attempt at coming ashore may be seen in the common worm.
The worm is still so unacclimatized to land life that instead of
living on the earth like other creatures, it lives _in_ it, as if it
were a thicker water, and always where there is enough moisture to
keep up the traditions of its past. Probably it took to the shore
originally by exchanging, first the water for the ooze at the bottom,
then by wriggling among muddy flats when the tide was out, and
finally, as the struggle for life grew keen, it pushed further and
further inland, continuing its migration so long as dampness was to be
found. Its cousin the snail, again, goes even further, for it not only
carries its shell ashore but when it cannot get moisture, actually
manufactures it.



When Man left the water, however,--or what was to develop into Man--he
took very much more ashore with him than a shell. Instead of crawling
ashore at the worm stage, he remained in the water until he evolved
into something like a fish; so that when, after an amphibian
interlude, he finally left it, many "ancient and fish-like"
characters remained in his body to tell the tale. Now, it is among
these piscine characteristics that we find the clue to where Man got
his ears. The chief characteristic of a fish is its apparatus for
breathing the air dissolved in the water. This consists of gills
supported on strong arches, the branchial arches, which in the
Elasmobranch fishes are from five to seven in number and uncovered
with any operculum, or lid. Communicating with these arches, in order
to allow the water which has been taken in at the mouth to pass out at
the gills, an equal number of slits or openings are provided in the
neck. Without these holes in their neck all fishes would instantly
perish, and we may be sure Nature took exceptional care in perfecting
this particular piece of the mechanism. Now it is one of the most
extraordinary facts in natural history that these slits in the fish's
neck are still represented in the neck of Man. Almost the most
prominent feature, indeed, after the head, in every mammalian embryo,
are the four clefts or furrows of the old gill-slits.[1] They are
still known in embryology by no other name--gill-slits--and so
persistent are these characters that children have been known to be
born with them not only externally visible--which is a common
occurrence--but open, through and through, so that fluids taken in at
the mouth could pass through them and trickle out at the neck. This
fact was so astounding as to be for a long time denied. It was thought
that when this happened, the orifice must have been accidentally made
by the probe of the surgeon. But Dr. Sutton has recently met with
actual cases where this has occurred. "I have seen milk," he says,
"issue from such fistulæ in individuals who have never been submitted
to sounding."[2]

  [1] N. B.--They appear as "clefts," marking not the adult fish, but
      the embryo at the corresponding stage.

  [2] "Evolution and Disease," p. 81.

In the common case of children born with these vestiges, the old
gill-slits are represented by small openings in the skin on the sides
of the neck and capable of admitting a thin probe. Sometimes the place
where they have been in childhood is marked throughout life by small
round patches of white skin. These relics of the sea, these
apparitions of the Fish, these sudden resurrections, are betrayals of
man's pedigree. Men wonder at mummy-wheat germinating after a thousand
years of dormancy. But here are ancient features bursting into life
after unknown ages, and challenging modern science for a verdict on
their affinities.

When the fish came ashore, its water-breathing apparatus was no longer
of any use to it. At first it had to keep it on, for it took a long
time to perfect the air-breathing apparatus which was to replace it.
But when this was ready the problem was, what to do with the earlier
organ? Nature is exceedingly economical, and could not throw all this
mechanism away. In fact Nature almost never parts with any structure
she has once made. What she does is to change it into something else.
Conversely, Nature seldom makes anything new; her method of creation
is to adapt something old. Now when Nature started out to manufacture
ears, she made them out of the old breathing apparatus. She saw that
if water could pass through a hole in the neck, sound could pass
likewise, and she set to work upon the highest up of the five
gill-slits and slowly elaborated it into a hearing organ.


There never had been an external ear in the world till this was done,
or any good ear at all. Creatures which live in water do not seem to
use hearing much, and the sound-waves in fishes are simply conveyed
through the walls of the head to the internal ear without any definite
mechanism. But as soon as land-life began, owing to the changed medium
through which sound-waves must now be propagated, a more delicate
instrument was required. And hence one of the first things attended to
was the construction and improvement of the ear.


It has long been a growing certainty to Comparative Anatomy that the
external and middle ear in Man are simply a development, an improved
edition, of the first gill-cleft and its surrounding parts. The
tympano-Eustachian passage is the homologue or counterpart of the
spiracle, associated in the shark with the first gill-opening.
Professor His of Leipsic has worked out the whole development in
minute detail, and conclusively demonstrated the mode of origin of the
external ear from the coalescence of six rounded tubercles surrounding
the first branchial cleft at an early period of embryonic life.
Haeckel's account of the process is as follows: "All the essential
parts of the middle ear--the tympanic membrane, tympanic cavity, and
Eustachian tube--develop from the first gill-opening with its
surrounding parts, which in the Primitive Fishes (_Selachii_) remains
throughout life as an open blowhole, situated between the first and
second gill-arches. In the embryos of higher Vertebrates it closes in
the centre, the point of concrescence forming the tympanic membrane.
The remaining outer part of the first gill-opening is the rudiment of
the outer ear-canal. From the inner part originates the tympanic
cavity, and further inward, the Eustachian tube. In connection with
these, the three bonelets of the ear develop from the first two
gill-arches; the hammer and anvil from the first, and the stirrup from
the upper end of the second gill-arch. Finally as regards the external
ear, the ear-shell (_concha auris_), and the outer ear-canal, leading
from the shell to the tympanic membrane--these parts develop in the
simplest way from the skin-covering which borders the outer orifice of
the first gill-opening. At this point the ear-shell rises in the form
of a circular fold of skin, in which cartilage and muscles afterwards

  [3] HAECKEL: "Evolution of Man," vol. ii, p. 269.


Now bearing in mind this account of the origin of ears, an
extraordinary circumstance confronts us. Ears are actually sometimes
found bursting out _in human beings_ half way down the neck, in the
exact position--namely along the line of the anterior border of the
sterno-mastoid muscle--which the gill-slits would occupy if they still
persisted. In some human families where the tendency to retain these
special structures is strong, one member sometimes illustrates the
abnormality by possessing the clefts alone, another has a cervical
ear, while a third has both a cleft and an ear,--all these of course
in addition to the ordinary ears. This cervical auricle has all the
characters of the ordinary ear, "it contains yellow elastic cartilage,
is skin-covered, and has muscle-fibre attached to it."[4]

  [4] SUTTON: "Evolution and Disease."


Dr. Sutton further calls attention to the fact that on ancient statues
of fauns and satyrs cervical auricles are sometimes found, and he
figures the head of a satyr from the British Museum, carved long
before the days of anatomy, where a sessile ear on the neck is most
distinct. A still better illustration may be seen in the Art Museum at
Boston on a full-sized cast of a faun belonging to the later Greek
period; and there are other examples in the same building. One
interest of these neck-ears in statues is that they are not as a rule
modelled after the human ear but taken from the cervical ear of the
goat, from which the general idea of the faun was derived. This shows
that neck-ears were common on the goats of that period--as they are on
goats to this day--but the sculptor would hardly have had the daring
to introduce this feature in the human subject unless he had been
aware that pathological facts encouraged him. The occurrence of these
ears in goats is no more than one would expect. Indeed one would look
for them not only in Man, but in all the Mammalia, for so far as their
bodies are concerned all the higher animals are near relations.
Observations on vestigial structures in animals are sadly wanting; but
they are certainly found in the horse, pig, sheep, and others.


That the human ear was not always the squat and degenerate instrument
it is at present may be seen by a critical glance at its structure.
Mr. Darwin records how a celebrated sculptor called his attention to a
little peculiarity in the external ear, which he had often noticed
both in men and women. "The peculiarity consists in a little blunt
point, projecting from the inwardly folded margin or helix. When
present, it is developed at birth, and according to Professor Ludwig
Meyer, more frequently in man than in woman. The helix obviously
consists of the extreme margin of the ear folded inwards; and the
folding appears to be in some manner connected with the whole external
ear being permanently pressed backwards. In many monkeys who do not
stand high in the order, as baboons and some species of macacus, the
upper portion of the ear is slightly pointed, and the margin is not at
all folded inwards; but if the margin were to be thus folded, a slight
point would necessarily project towards the centre."[5]

  [5] "Descent of Man," p. 15.

Here then, in this discovery of the lost tip of the ancestral ear, is
further and visible advertisement of man's Descent, a surviving symbol
of the stirring times and dangerous days of his animal youth. It is
difficult to imagine any other theory than that of Descent which could
account for all these facts. That evolution should leave such clues
lying about is at least an instance of its candor.


But this does not exhaust the betrayals of this most confiding organ.
If we turn from the outward ear to the muscular apparatus for working
it, fresh traces of its animal career are brought to light. The
erection of the ear, in order to catch sound better, is a power
possessed by almost all mammals, and the attached muscles are large
and greatly developed in all but domesticated forms. This same
apparatus, though he makes no use of it whatever, is still attached to
the ears of Man. It is so long since he relied on the warnings of
hearing, that by a well-known law the muscles have fallen into disuse
and atrophied. In many cases, however, the power of twitching the ear
is not wholly lost, and every school-boy can point to some one in his
class who retains the capacity and is apt to revive it in irrelevant

One might run over all the other organs of the human body and show
their affinities with animal structures and an animal past. The
twitching of the ear, for instance, suggests another obsolete or
obsolescent power--the power, or rather the set of powers, for
twitching the skin, especially the skin of the scalp and forehead
by which we raise the eyebrows. Sub-cutaneous muscles for shaking
off flies from the skin, or for erecting the hair of the scalp,
are common among quadrupeds, and these are represented in the human
subject by the still functioning muscles of the forehead, and
occasionally of the head itself. Everyone has met persons who possess
the power of moving the whole scalp to and fro, and the muscular
apparatus for effecting it is identical with what is normally
found in some of the Quadrumana.

Another typical vestigial structure is the _plica semi-lunaris_, the
remnant of the nictitating membrane characteristic of nearly the whole
vertebrate sub-kingdom. This membrane is a semi-transparent curtain
which can be drawn rapidly across the external surface of the eye for
the purpose of sweeping it clean. In birds it is extremely common, but
it also exists in fish, mammals, and all the other vertebrates. Where
it is not found of any functional value it is almost always
represented by vestiges of some kind. In Man all that is left of it is
a little piece of the curtain draped at the side of the eye.

When one passes from the head to the other extremity of the human
body one comes upon a somewhat unexpected but very pronounced
characteristic--the relic of the tail, and not only of the tail, but
of muscles for wagging it. Everyone who first sees a human skeleton
is amazed at this discovery. At the end of the vertebral column,
curling faintly outward in suggestive fashion, are three, four, and
occasionally five vertebræ forming the coccyx, a true rudimentary
tail. In the adult this is always concealed beneath the skin, but
in the embryo, both in man and ape, at an early stage it is much
longer than the limbs. What is decisive as to its true nature,
however, is that even in the embryo of man the muscles for wagging
it are still found. In the grown-up human being these muscles are
represented by bands of fibrous tissue, but cases are known where
the actual muscles persist through life. That a distinct external
tail should not be still found in Man may seem disappointing to the
evolutionist. But the want of a tail argues more for the theory of
Evolution than its presence would have done. It would have been
contrary to the Theory of Descent had he possessed a longer tail. For
all the anthropoids most allied to Man have long since also parted
with theirs.

It was formerly held that the entire animal creation had contributed
something to the anatomy of Man, that as Serres expressed it "Human
Organogenesis is a condensed Comparative Anatomy." But though Man has
not such a monopoly of the past as is here inferred--other types
having here and there emerged and developed along lines of their
own--it is certain that the materials for his body have been brought
together from an unknown multitude of lowlier forms of life.


Those who know the Cathedral of St. Mark's will remember how this
noblest of the Stones of Venice owes its greatness to the patient
hands of centuries and centuries of workers, how every quarter of the
globe has been spoiled of its treasures to dignify this single shrine.
But he who ponders over the more ancient temple of the human body will
find imagination fail him as he tries to think from what remote and
mingled sources, from what lands, seas, climates, atmospheres, its
various parts have been called together, and by what innumerable
contributory creatures, swimming, creeping, flying, climbing, each of
its several members was wrought and perfected. What ancient chisel
first sculptured the rounded columns of the limbs? What dead hands
built the cupola of the brain, and from what older ruins were the
scattered pieces of its mosaic-work brought? Who fixed the windows in
its upper walls? What forgotten looms wove its tapestries and
draperies? What winds and weathers wrought the strength into its
buttresses? What ocean-beds and forest glades worked up the colors?
What Love and Terror and Night called forth the Music? And what Life
and Death and Pain and Struggle put all together in the noiseless
workshop of the past and removed each worker silently when its task
was done? How these things came to be Biology is one long record. The
architects and builders of this mighty temple are not anonymous. Their
names, and the work they did, are graven forever on the walls and
arches of the Human Embryo. For this is a volume of that Book in which
Man's members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when
as yet there was none of them.



The following letters were written in 1888 and 1889, by James Parton
to the Honorable Alfred R. Conkling of New York City. In December,
1888, Mr. Conkling wrote to Mr. Parton, making him a formal offer to
assist in the preparation of the "Life and Letters of Roscoe
Conkling." Mr. Parton generously declined to accept payment, but took
a great interest in the work, and during the following year
corresponded frequently with Mr. Conkling, advising upon specific
points and setting forth the general principles of the art of

We are indebted to Mr. Conkling for permission to print these letters,
which are full of wise suggestion to the literary "recruit," and of
genuine human interest to all lovers of good reading. They give us
glimpses of Mr. Parton, not only as a conscientious writer of
biography who had acquired a rare mastery of his art, but also as a
man of aggressive interest in public affairs, of broad mind, and a
singularly wholesome nature.

       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _Dec. 8, 1888_.

DEAR SIR: I am glad to learn from yours of yesterday that we are to
have a biography of so interesting and marked a character as the
lamented Roscoe Conkling, and I should esteem it a privilege to render
any assistance toward it in my power.


The great charm of all biography is the truth, told simply, directly,
boldly, charitably.

But this is also the great difficulty. A human life is long. A human
character is complicated. It is often inconsistent with itself, and it
requires nice judgment to proportion it in such a way as to make the
book really correspond with the man, and make the same impression upon
the reader that the man did upon those who knew him best.

_Your_ difficulty will be to present fairly his less favorable side;
but upon this depends all the value, and much of the interest of the

My great rules are:

1, To know the subject thoroughly myself; 2, to index fully all the
knowledge in existence relating to it; 3, to determine beforehand
where I will be brief, where expand, and how much space I can afford
to each part; 4, to work slowly and finish as I go; 5, to avoid eulogy
and apology and let the facts have their natural weight; 6, to hold
back nothing which the reader has a right to know.

I have generally had the great advantage of loving my subjects warmly,
and I do not believe we can do justice to any human creature unless we
love him. A true love enlightens, but not blinds, as we often see in
the case of mothers who love their children better, and also know
them better, than anybody else ever does.

With regard to New York, I am always going there, but never go;
still, I may have to go soon, and I will go anyway if I can do
anything important or valuable in the way you suggest--but not
"professionally," except as an old soldier helps a recruit.

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _Dec. 24, 1888_.

DEAR SIR: I have examined with much interest and pleasure your work
upon Mexico, with a title so extravagantly modest as almost to efface
the author. Let us accept our fate. It is our destiny to live in an
age when all human distinctions are abolished, or about to be
abolished, except the advertiser and his victim. Your work appears to
me to be quite a model, and I wish I were going to be a tourist in
Mexico that I might have the advantage of using it.

One word more with regard to your biography. In the case of a person
like Mr. Conkling, whose vocation it was to express himself in words,
and whose utterances were often most brilliant and powerful, I think
you should make great and free use of his letters and speeches. Is not
a volume of five hundred pages too small? Could you not make a work in
two volumes, and get Mark Twain to sell it by subscription?

Another: I hope you feel the peculiar character and importance of that
part of New York of which Utica is the central point. It does not
figure much in books, but there are many strong and remarkable
families there. I should like to see it elucidated. The first
questions to be asked of a man are: Where, and of whom, was he born?

Very truly yours,


P. S.--For example: If you know fully what a _Corsican_ is, you have
the key to the understanding of Bonaparte. He was a Corsican above all
things else, and not in the least a Frenchman.

So of Andrew Jackson: He was a Scotch-Irishman. Alexander Hamilton: a

       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _March 26, 1889_.

MY DEAR SIR: You can give a sufficiently "complete account" of an
event without giving a long one. Now, the duel between two such
persons as Burr and Hamilton _may_ be long, because it can also be
interesting. Readers are interested in the men, in the time, in the
scene, and the whole affair is surcharged with human interest. In that
Elmira trial, the chief interest will centre in your uncle's tact and
success. I should give enough of the trial to enable the reader to see
and appreciate his part in the affair. My impression is: Do not expend
many pages upon it, but pack the pages full of matter. You want all
your room for other scenes in which he displayed his great power in a
striking way.

Many qualities are desirable in a book, only one is necessary--to be
interesting enough to be read. The art is, to be short where the
interest is small, and long where the interest is great.

Your uncle's speeches do not need much "comment." Most speeches
contain one passage which includes the whole.

I fear I shall not be able to visit New York this spring.

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _April 3, 1889_.

MY DEAR SIR: As often as possible I would insert the bright things
where they belong, as they seem to enliven the narrative. If you have
an inconvenient surplus, or a number of things undated, you might make
a chapter of them, or reserve them for the final chapter. It is a good
_rule_, though only a _rule_, not to have breaks in the continuity,
like the "Bagman's Story" in "Pickwick." Readers are apt to skip them,
however good they may be in themselves. You have doubtless often done
so. A good thing is twice good when it comes in just where it ought.
The modern reader is very shy, and easily breaks away from you, if you
only give him a pretext.

I merely send my impressions. You alone can really judge.

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _April 17, 1889_.

MY DEAR SIR: The description of your uncle's oratory will be so sure
to interest the reader, that it may come in almost anywhere, but best,
perhaps, where you mention his first notable speech. Remember, too,
that the author has, in his last chapter, not only a chance to "sum
up," but also an opportunity to slip in anything he may have omitted.
An interesting thing it is always to know how a strong man grew old,
what changes occurred in his manner, methods and character.

By all means, use the personal pronoun sparingly, and allude
unfrequently to your relationship. It is not necessary wholly to avoid
either. Deal with the reader honestly and openly. There may come
moments when calling him "my uncle" would be fair, and in the best
taste--but not often.

The ladies have the privilege of skipping. Make your late chapter
about the law practice in New York very full and clear. It will very
greatly interest everybody who will be likely to read the book. It is
the intrinsic worth of a book that is to be considered before all
things else.

I fear you are making the book too short. Mind: It _cannot_ be what is
called "popular." It _must_ appeal to the few. Ought it not to be two
volumes at five dollars?

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

Think of Blaine's book and its sale by subscription.

The difference between one volume published in the ordinary way, and
two volumes by subscription, _may_ be the difference between a profit
of two thousand dollars and one of two hundred thousand dollars.

Blaine's book, sold over the counter, might have gone to the length of
five thousand copies. Sold by subscription, it made him rich.

On this point, however, Mr. Appleton's opinion is worth ten of mine.

       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _April 26, 1889_.

MY DEAR SIR: The pamphlet has only just arrived.

So far as the comments are necessary to elucidate the text, and
to explain why and how the text came to be uttered, they are
justified--no farther. Your uncle was such a master of expression
that almost anything placed in juxtaposition must suffer from the

Let _him_ have the whole floor, I say, and just give the indispensable
explanations. It would be impossible to enhance the effect of his
characteristic passages. They need, like diamonds, a quiet setting.

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _June 4, 1889_.

MY DEAR SIR: I return your paper of questions. Give plenty of the
"light matter" to which you refer, and I hope you will extract many
passages that show your uncle's horror of corruption. The pamphlets
you were so good as to send me are valuable and interesting. I do not
wonder at his great success before a jury. He was an awful man to have
on the other side. Is there any one who could describe for you some of
the noted scenes in which your uncle figured, but which you did not
witness yourself? There may be available interviews in the newspapers.
I remember hearing Thomas Nast talk about him very enthusiastically
after returning from a visit to him in Washington. You could make a
nice chapter about the Senate--its ways and occupations, traditions
and tone--viewed merely as a club of gentlemen.

I am glad that Mark Twain is going to publish the book. Give all the
pictures you dare.

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _Aug. 5, 1889_.

DEAR SIR: Would not those "undated anecdotes" come in well to
illustrate and brighten your summing-up chapter? If not, then the plan
you suggest might answer very well.

I am glad to hear that you are so near to the end of your labors, and
that the work is to be published by the ever victorious firm of Mark
Twain. If I have been able to render you the smallest service I am
glad, and you are heartily welcome.

Very truly yours,


       *       *       *       *       *

NEWBURYPORT, MASS., _Dec. 28, 1889_.

DEAR SIR: Your solid volume reached me several days ago, and some time
after, your letter of Dec. 20. I have now read the work pretty
carefully, and shall no doubt often return to it. Considering the
restraints you were under, as nephew and as Republican, you have
executed your task well and given to the world the most pathetic of
the tragedies resulting from the system of spoils. Never again, until
that blighting curse of free institutions is destroyed, will a man of
Roscoe Conkling's genius, pride and purity remain long in the public
service, if ever he enters it. He was the last of the Romans. My great
regret is that he did not consecrate his whole existence to the reform
of the civil service. I have such an acute sense of the shame, the
cruelty and the childish folly of the present system that I sometimes
feel as if we ought to stop all our other work and enter upon a
universal crusade against it.

You must not expect the public to remain satisfied with the omissions
and suppressions of your book. Sooner or later, somebody will supply
them, and you might just as well have told the whole story.

I am glad to hear of the success of the book with the public.

Very truly yours,


[Illustration: JAMES PARTON IN 1891.]



PARIS, _April 20, 1893_.

Let me say, at the very start, that it is imperative not to forget
the date which heads this article. This date has a significance of
the highest importance, for it marks the opening of a new era.
The political situation of Europe is to-day widely different from
what it was only yesterday. Yesterday the entire world turned an
eye feverishly intent towards Belgium, upon the spectacle there of
the decisive struggle between an established government and an
unestablished proletariat. There was to be seen in Belgium the
constitutional authority of an entire realm, backed by the force of
arms, opposed by a militant labor democracy. On the one side,
law, authority, armed force; on the other, lack of authority, of
capital, and of arms; in a word, vague nothingness struggling
against omnipotence. Yet it is the former that has won the day.
Omnipotence has belied its name, and has been driven to the wall;
the defeat has been crushing. But more than this, it has been
significant. I repeat, it marks the opening of a new era.

For the world-wide association of laborers now comprehends that it
holds the Old World in its hands. It has discovered the invincible
power of the strike, in obedience to the watchword emanating from its
irresponsible leaders. Here is a force which is negative, perhaps, but
one against which nothing henceforth can prevail. Lo, a silent word of
command, and the towers of Jericho fall! Before a general strike of
this sort the Old World is to-day powerless, like the child at the
breast to whom the mother refuses to give suck.

This is a fact so big with suggestion, so sudden, so almost
terrifying, that it changes all our former points of view. I could
not have written yesterday what I can write to-day; for when I saw
unexpectedly breaking out "the troubles in Belgium," I could not but
postpone till all was over the writing of the article for which I had
been asked. No one has as yet fairly grappled with the meaning of the
new social pact prepared in mystery, a pact of which the dark
elaboration had been only suspected, but which has just become so
startlingly revealed. The idea of the strike as applied to political
problems upsets all preconceived notions. What has hitherto been
regarded as the only real force is now as if paralyzed; instead,
sheer, silent will-power remains the only sovereign. In such
circumstances who would venture to draw the horoscope of the Europe of

For consider the situation. Recognized constitutional government
has actually thought itself fortunate in treating with "strikers,"
and in attempting to conceal the reality of its defeat behind the
vain show of an arrangement, the actual significance of which
deceives nobody. The face of Europe has changed in an instant. The Old
World is conquered. Socialism bestirs itself, and begins its
conquering march. The dangerous problems, hitherto so vague, become
instantly pressing. Yet no one is ready with a solution, and few care
even to discuss these problems. Even the leaders of the hostile
army, the strike generals, do not, can not, measure all the
consequences of their orders. Drunk with their new power they
forget for the moment its unseen bearings. When first, more used to
the sensation of omnipotence, they look about them to see what
their action may have precipitated, they will draw back in horror.

The phrase, "the present situation of Europe," therefore, can have
reference now only to a very indefinite and a future thing. The
present is big with uncertainties for the morrow, and the prospect
would be really distressing, if the established wielders of power did
not realize--what now is inevitable--the imperative necessity of
coming to some understanding with this fresh force; the hopelessness,
henceforward, of playing with theories of repression, and the duty of
negotiating with this great amorphous army, which, once it is on the
march, may drink dry the cisterns at which human society is accustomed
to assuage its thirst. And it is in the light of these events in
Belgium, that I do not hesitate to say, that Europe for a long time
still will not be menaced by war. The social problem is now too
pressing. It requires the entire attention. Woe to the blind! The hour
of rest is past; a new world awakes. It knows its strength. It has
everything to gain, nothing to lose. Follow it with anxious eye, ye
who sleep now in possession, for if ye sleep too long, ye will awake
in chains!

But apart from this event, which is the prelude of a social struggle
to be of long duration, yet absolutely inevitable, it is possible at
this moment, when the European world is preparing to turn westward
beyond the Atlantic, there to entrust to the proud loyalty of the
United States immense and untold treasures, to predict for this
continent a prolonged peace--a peace, however, which is as the
uncertain tranquillity of an old man heavily dozing on a bed where
there is no real rest. It is alone one of those incidents, impossible
to anticipate, which seize whole nations as with madness, driving them
to arms and carnage, and leaving them at the end of the disillusion of
the struggle stupefied with their victory, or terrified in their
defeat, that can break the uncertain spell of this restless sleep. But
incidents such as these, which bring to naught all human calculation,
can, indeed must, be left out of account, when considering the
character of a given moment, and the prospects of peace or war.

Europe, just now, is divided up rather arbitrarily, but none the less
really. This is partly due to a premeditated combination, partly to
chance, partly also to the bungling or ignorance of rulers. The Triple
Alliance, due to the decisive action of Prince Bismarck, is the only
truly scientific conception of the sort, the only one possessing a
stable and seriously laid foundation. It includes Austria, which
relies on Germany to shield it from Russia, as its directly menacing
foe, or to bar against Russia the route to Constantinople whenever
Russia shall appear fatally dangerous to the existence of the combined
empire of Austria-Hungary. It includes Germany, which, as careful
organizer of the Alliance, is thus protected against any possible
simultaneous action of France and Russia. It includes Italy, which,
otherwise weak in the presence of the disdainful hostility of France,
is thus assured a certain security and repose. Aside from this great
Triple Alliance, the European states have no real collective
organization; there are only affinities badly defined, private
interests, or uncertain situations from which they do not venture to
think of extricating themselves. What is called the Franco-Russian
understanding is limited at the moment to an exchange of notes which
might serve as the basis of a military convention; to demonstrations
at once noisy and platonic, in which France is playing a sort of
Potiphar role; and to the chance eventuality of Russia's one day
finding herself engaged in some formidable struggle when she could
count on the irresistible and unthinking enthusiasm of France, who
would place blood and treasure at her disposal.

When has human history ever afforded such a spectacle?

No real alliance exists between Russia and France, but no French
government could resist popular pressure, were the question to come up
of helping Russia in the case of a war direct or indirect against
Germany. Yet at a single gesture of the autocratic czar, Russia would
shoulder arms and fight in whatever deadly combat France found itself
involved. The Emperor of Russia is to-day, perhaps, the most
formidable monarch who has ever existed. He has at his unchecked beck
and call the vastest empire in Europe, but an empire without gold,
sunlight, or liberty. Stop! It is a force, blind and brutal, and
capable of a frightful impact; a force which the finger of a single
man can set in motion, and which may be made to fall crushingly at the
exact point designated by the imperious and imperial gesture. To this
force which does not reason, the czar can, with a gleam of his sword,
rally the power of France. France, the country of sunlight and
liberty, where gold flows in rivulets, where every citizen thinks and
wills, and where every soldier would fight to the death, conscious
that it is only with Russia, in common struggle against common
enemies, that a great conflict may be undertaken. The spectacle of
such power, dormant in one human brain, is almost overwhelming; and
the psychologist who portends that every man disposing of autocratic
power, whether czar, sultan or pope, must inevitably go mad, utters a
thought perhaps not so paradoxical after all.

However, this autocrat so formidably armed is well known to be
absolutely pacific. He turns a constantly listening ear to the
counsels of an experienced queen, herself full of the spirit of peace,
the Queen of Denmark. This queen loves Germany; she adores the young
emperor whom she calls "an angel." She has already smoothed down many
rough places. It was she who brought about the Kiel interview and the
visit of the czarevitch to Berlin. She has strengthened the idea of
peace in the brain of this emperor, whence, instead, war might spring
full-armed; war _fin de siècle_; the new, mysterious, unprecedented
form of it; the war of infinitely multiplied murder, covering the Old
World with corpses of the slain. The special factor of armed explosion
most to be dreaded in Europe is thus held in check by an all-powerful
hand gently directed. It is nothing less than the work of God that has
made him who holds the chief of the arsenals of power, pacific, and
thus reassuring to the world.

Turn your vision from this tacit though vague understanding between
France and Russia, and look beyond the regularly organized Triple
Alliance; the eye falls on three great isolated powers, directed by
various motives, and the action of which, determined upon only at the
last moment, is constantly in the thought of the other ruling nations.
Of these three the first is England. No minister of foreign affairs in
any country would ever think of committing towards the English nation
the crime of supposing its policy subservient to that of any other
nation. The dream or the fear of a quadruple alliance has haunted only
the crudest brains. England remains free in its movements, and it will
preserve this liberty to the last. This is, moreover, for the
happiness of all; for, except in those accesses of madness, a sort of
factor of which, as I said, no account can be taken, no power will
think of taking up a struggle in which the intervention of England, on
one side or the other, can determine the issue.

The second great power which remains free of all entanglement is that
which dominates the Bosphorus. A strange power, indeed! It has no
friends. There it remains alone on this European soil, of which it
occupies certain extreme points, like a bit of abandoned booty
tempting the cupidity of the Christian world. The whole of Europe
looks thither with dull hate, and each power would willingly bear away
a bit of the trappings and the hangings that render soft and
resplendent the gilded cage where lies the sick lion of Yildiz Kiosk.
If ever the war which appears to me so distant breaks out, Abdul
Hamid, or his successor, will have his hands free; and at the supreme
moment when the conqueror, whomsoever he may be, cannot reject them,
will impose his conditions. If the then sultan neglects to seize the
event, it is not at all sure that the crescent will cease to mark its
silhouette on the firmament of Europe; but at all events, until then
European peace is the surest safeguard of the Ottoman Empire, and this
Abdul Hamid well knows.

The third of the great isolated powers of which I speak is personified
to-day by the grand old man whom an heroic pertinacity, henceforward
to be traditional, keeps a prisoner at the Vatican. No one can have
any idea of the life and movement which reigns in this voluntary
prison which lies over against the Quirinal. Thither flow innumerable
missives from every corner of the world, and could I only tell some of
them, it would be seen how long still is the arm extending from the
shadow of St. Peter's; how dreadful still are the lips that speak in
the shade of the Vatican. I should show the Holy Father and his
cardinals writing to the Emperor of Austria, directing him by counsel
and advice, and sometimes almost by their orders. I should show Prince
Bismarck continuing, since his fall, to hold before the eyes of the
pope, glimpses of the more or less partial restoration of the temporal
power. I should show Leo XIII. now trying to unite, now to alienate,
France and Russia, according as at the moment this or that policy
seems to him most propitious for his own cause or the cause of peace;
and I should show, at the same time, the Vatican divided within
itself, and Cardinal Vauncelli working, in secret letters addressed to
powerful sovereigns, against the policy of Cardinal Rampolla, and
acting on the mind of Leo XIII. to detach him from his secretary of
state, and wean him from the democratic policy on which he is now
launched. I should show, also, all the leading politicians of France,
whether in power or out, soliciting the support, the protection, the
favor of Leo XIII., and the latter working with astounding insight for
the fusion, more and more complete, of the liberal monarchical party
with the Republic. I should show again how, owing to mysterious
action, instability has become the normal state of France; and how the
action of Russia, driven by the double current from the north and the
south, not only has been not a source of strength for M. Ribot, but
even forced him to his fall. Not only did the czar refuse to send the
Russian fleet to France, and to let the czarevitch pass through Paris
under pretext of going from Berlin to London, but he has just of late
imposed on the French prime minister exigencies of such a nature that
the latter has preferred to lay down the power rather than to submit.
When M. Ribot, minister of foreign affairs, committed the political
stupidity of carrying to the tribune the name of Baron Mohrenheim in
connection with the Panama scandal, the Emperor of Russia showed that
he was much irritated and wounded. M. Develle, minister of foreign
affairs, hurried to the baron with excuses. But the czar declared
these excuses unsatisfactory. M. Ribot then went himself to see the
ambassador and give him certain explanations and excuses. Still the
czar was not satisfied. He demanded a letter written by the prime
minister and addressed to the Russian minister of foreign affairs, M.
de Giers, who was then stopping at the gates of France. M. Ribot could
not accept this demand. He had already endured the insult of M.
Stambouloff during the affair of the Chadourne expulsion. He did not
wish to leave behind him a letter of excuse addressed to M. de Giers.
He preferred to fall, and he fell.

This is a fair instance of the hidden forces which sweep through the
side-scenes of international European politics. In the preceding rapid
summary of the present state of politics in the Old World, the
conclusion must come irrefutably, and that is the ground of these
remarks, that no war is in sight, nor will be for yet a long time. The
Triple Alliance wishes, and necessarily wishes, peace. The young
German emperor, from whom people have affected to anticipate some mad
and irresponsible conduct, has no doubt uttered some imprudent words,
but he has never committed any dangerous action. Really, his mouth
seems a sort of safety-valve for the boiling steam within. So far he
is satisfied with the conquests already secured. He is trying to bring
back to him the Emperor of Russia. The meeting which he is now having
with the pope is intended to bring about a formal _rapprochement_
between the Quirinal and Vatican. Leo XIII., in turning his face
towards the democracy, disquiets all thrones; but he disquiets
especially the throne of Italy, since he is showing the Italians that
the Papacy is not only not an enemy of republics, but that it might be
the protector of future republics in Italy, if the Italian fatherland,
dreaming of the former brilliant prosperity, tried to found a
democratic federation, with the pope as the centre and beneficent
father. But at the same time Leo XIII. will whisper peace in the ear
of William II. The young emperor wishes for a long era of peace. The
new military law, with its far-reaching bearings, proves this. Even
to-day he would never think of undertaking a war which left Prince
Bismarck out of account, and he will never undertake a war which might
cause his return.

So, too, the Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary; he too is inclined
to peace. He cannot risk a war. The bonds which link the different
portions of the empire are too fragile to be exposed to the rude
strain of armed strife. Italy, perhaps, by a fortunate war might be a
gainer; but it is not strong enough to provoke one, or even to carry
one on. It would regard the Papacy at the Vatican as too great a
danger at its back; and, with little hope of conquering anything
without its borders, it might legitimately fear to find Rome no
longer intact on its return.

As for the Emperor of Russia, he is moderate at once in his love for
France and his hatred of Germany. So far, a man of genius has been
wanting to cement the bonds of alliance between France and Germany.
There is already an understanding, vague, platonic, and with no morrow
assured to it. The French Republic will recoil before the thought of
war, so long as Russian action does not precipitate an explosion. The
Republic knows that war would be at its peril; that vanquished it is
submerged under floods of anarchy, that victorious it brings forth a
Cæsar, and it wishes peace.

England, rich, industrial, devoted to its own internal problems,
preserves an attitude which is an earnest of peace. So that, when one
casts a steady glance over the Europe of the present hour, one is
minded to say to the world about to repair to the great centre of
industry, of letters, and of art, which Chicago is so soon to be: "Go
in peace. War is distant. Gather in peace the fruit of your peaceful



by Joel Chandler Harris

Author of "Uncle Remus," "Plantation Fables," etc.


Private O'Halloran, detailed for special duty in advance of the picket
line, sat reclining against a huge red oak. Within reach lay a rifle
of beautiful workmanship. In one hand he held a blackened brier-root
pipe, gazing on it with an air of mock regret. It had been his
companion on many a weary march and on many a lonely day, when, as
now, he was doing duty as a sharp-shooter. But it was not much of a
companion now. It held the flavor, but not the fragrance, of other
days. It was empty, and so was O'Halloran's tobacco-pouch. It was
nothing to grumble about, but the big, laughing Irishman liked his
pipe, especially when it was full of tobacco. The words of an old song
came to him, and he hummed them to himself:

  "There was an ould man, an' he had a wooden leg,
  An' he had no terbacky, nor terbacky could he beg;
  There was another ould man, as keen as a fox,
  An' he always had terbacky in his ould terbacky box.

  "Sez one ould man, 'Will yez give me a chew?'
  Sez the other ould man, 'I'll be dommed ef I do.
  Kape away from them gin-mills, an' save up yure rocks,
  An' ye'll always have terbacky in yer ould terbacky box.'"

What with the singing and the far-away thoughts that accompanied the
song, Private O'Halloran failed to hear footsteps approaching until
they sounded quite near.

"Halt!" he cried, seizing his rifle and springing to his feet. The
newcomer wore the insignia of a Federal captain, seeing which,
O'Halloran lowered his weapon and saluted. "Sure, sor, you're not to
mind me capers. I thought the inimy had me complately surrounded--I
did, upon me sowl."

"And I," said the captain, laughing, "thought the Johnnies had
caught me. It is a pleasant surprise. You are O'Halloran of the
Sharp-shooters, I have heard of you--a gay singer and a great

"Sure it's not for me to say that same. I sings a little bechwane
times for to kape up me sperits, and takes me chances, right and lift.
You're takin' a good many yourself, sor, so far away from the picket
line. If I make no mistake, sor, it is Captain Somerville I'm talkin'

"That is my name," the captain said.

"I was touchin' elbows wit' you at Gettysburg, sor."

The captain looked at O'Halloran again. "Why, certainly!" he
exclaimed. "You are the big fellow that lifted one of the Johnnies
over the stone wall."

"By the slack of the trousers. I am that same, sor. He was nothin' but
a bit of a lad, sor, but he fought right up to the end of me nose. The
men was jabbin' at 'im wit' their bay'nets, so I sez to him, says I,
'Come in out of the inclemency of the weather,' says I, and thin I
lifted him over. He made at me, sor, when I put 'im down, an' it took
two men for to lead 'im kindly to the rear. It was a warm hour, sor."

As O'Halloran talked, he kept his eyes far afield.

"Sure, sor," he went on, "you stand too much in the open. They had one
muddlehead on that post yesterday; they'll not put another there
to-day, sor." As he said this, the big Irishman seized the captain by
the arm and gave him a sudden jerk. It was an unceremonious
proceeding, but a very timely one, for the next moment the sapling
against which the captain had been lightly leaning was shattered by a
ball from the Confederate side.

"Tis an old friend of mine, sor," said O'Halloran; "I know 'im by his
handwritin'. They had a muddlehead there yesterday, sor. I set in full
sight of 'im, an' he blazed at me twice; the last time I had me fist
above me head, an' he grazed me knuckles. 'Be-dad,' says I, 'you're no
good in your place;' an' when he showed his mug, I plugged 'im where
the nose says howdy to the eyebrows. 'Twas no hurt to 'im, sor; if he
seen the flash, 'twas as much."

To the left, in a little clearing, was a comfortable farm-house.
Stacks of fodder and straw and pens of corn in the shuck were ranged
around. There was every appearance of prosperity, but no sign of life,
save two bluebirds, the pioneers of spring, that were fighting around
the martin gourds, preparing to take possession.

"There's where I was born." The captain pointed to the farm-house. "It
is five years since I have seen the place."

"You don't tell me, sor! I see in the Hur'ld that they call it the
Civil War, but it's nothin' but oncivil, sor, for to fight agin' your
ould home."

"You are right," assented the captain. "There's nothing civil about
war. I suppose the old house has long been deserted."

"Sure, look at the forage, thin. 'Tis piled up as nately as you
please. Wait till the b'ys git at it! Look at the smoke of the
chimbly. Barrin' the jay-birds, 'tis the peacefulest sight I've

"My people are gone," said the captain. "My father was a Union man. I
wouldn't be surprised to hear of him somewhere at the North. The day
that I was eighteen he gave me a larrupping for disobedience, and I
ran away."

"Don't spake of it, sor." O'Halloran held up his hands. "Many's the
time I've had me feelin's hurted wit' a bar'l stave."

"That was in 1860," said the captain. "I was too proud to go back
home, but when the war began I remembered what a strong Union man my
father was, and I joined the Union army."

"'Tis a great scheme for a play," said the big Irishman solemnly.

"My mother was dead," the captain went on, "my oldest sister was
married, and my youngest sister was at school in Philadelphia, and my
brother, two years older than myself, made life miserable for me in
trying to boss me."

"Oh!" exclaimed O'Halloran, "don't I know that same? 'Tis meself
that's been along there."

Captain Somerville looked at the old place, carefully noting the
outward changes, which were comparatively few. He noted, too, with the
eye of a soldier, that when the impending conflict took place between
the forces then facing each other, there would be a sharp struggle for
the knoll on which the house stood; and he thought it was a curious
feat for his mind to perform, to regard the old home where he had been
both happy and miserable as a strategic point of battle. Private
O'Halloran had no such memories to please or to vex him. To the extent
of his opportunities he was a man of business. He took a piece of
white cloth from his pocket and hung it on the broken sapling.

"I'll see, sor, if yon chap is in the grocery business."

As he turned away, there was a puff of smoke on the farther hill, a
crackling report, and the hanging cloth jumped as though it were

"Faith, it's him, sor!" exclaimed O'Halloran, "an' he's in a mighty
hurry." Whereupon the big Irishman brushed a pile of leaves from an
oil-cloth strapped together in the semblance of a knapsack.

"What have you there?" asked Captain Somerville.

"Sure, 'tis me grocery store, sor. Coffee, tay, an' sugar. Faith, I'll
make the devil's mouth water like a baby cuttin' his stomach tathe.
Would ye mind comin' along, sor, for to kape me from swindlin' the
Johnny out of all his belongin's?"


Three men sat in a gully that had once been a hillside ditch. Their
uniforms were various, the result of accident and capture. One of them
wore a very fine blue overcoat which was in queer contrast to his
ragged pantaloons. This was Lieutenant Clopton, who had charge of the
picket line. Another had on the uniform of an artilleryman, and his
left arm was in a sling. He had come out of the hospital to do duty as
a guide. This was Private John Fambrough. The third had on no uniform
at all, but was dressed in plain citizen's clothes, much the worse for
wear. This was Jack Kilpatrick, scout and sharp-shooter. Happy Jack,
as he was called.

How long since the gully had been a ditch it would be impossible to
say, but it must have been a good many years, for the pines had grown
into stout trees, and here and there a black-jack loomed up

"Don't git too permiscus around here," said Happy Jack, as the others
were moving about. "This ain't no fancy spot." He eased himself upward
on his elbow, and made a swift but careful survey of the woodland
vista that led to the Federal lines. Then he shook down the breech of
his rifle, and slipped a long cartridge into its place. "You see that
big poplar over yonder? Well, under that tree there's a man, leastways
he ought to be there, because he's always hangin' around in front of

"Why don't you nail him?" asked Fambrough.

"Bosh! Why don't he nail me? It's because he can't do it. Well, that's
the reason I don't nail him. You know what happened yesterday, don't
you? You saw that elegant lookin' chap that came out to take my place,
didn't you? Did you see him when he went back?"

Lieutenant Clopton replied with a little grimace, but Fambrough said
never a word. He only looked at Kilpatrick with inquiring eyes.

"Why, he was the nicest lookin' man in the army--hair combed, clothes
brushed, and rings on his fingers. He was all the way from New 'leans,
with a silver-mounted rifle and a globe sight."

"A which?" asked Fambrough.

"A globe sight. Set down on yourself a little further, sonny," said
Happy Jack; "your head's too high. I says to him, says I, 'Friend, you
are goin' where you'll have to strip that doll's step-ladder off'n
your gun, an' come down to business,' says I. I says, says I, 'You may
have to face a red-headed, flannel-mouthed Irishman, and you don't
want to look at him through all that machinery,' says I."

"What did he say?" Fambrough asked.

"He said, 'I'll git him.' Now, how did he git him? Why, he come down
here, lammed aloose a time or two, and then hung his head over the
edge of the gully there, with a ball right spang betwixt his eyes. I
went behind the picket line to get a wink of sleep, but I hadn't
more'n curled up in the broom-sage before I heard that chap a-bangin'
away. Then come the reply, like this--" Happy Jack snapped his
fingers; "and then I went to sleep waitin' for the rej'inder."

Kilpatrick paused, and looked steadily in the direction of the

"Well, dog my cats! Yonder's a chap standin' right out in front of
me. It ain't the Mickey, neither. I'll see what he's up to." He
raised his rifle with a light swinging movement, chirruped to it as
though it were a horse or a little child, and in another moment the
deadly business of war would have been resumed, but Fambrough laid his
hand on the sharp-shooter's arm.

"Wait," he said. "That may be my old man wandering around out there.
Don't be too quick on trigger. I ain't got but one old man."

"Shucks!" exclaimed Kilpatrick, pettishly; "you reckon I don't know
your old man? He's big in the body, an' wobbly in his legs. You've
spiled a mighty purty shot. I believe in my soul that chap was a
colonel, an' he might 'a' been a general. Now that's funny."

"What's funny?" asked Fambrough.

"Why, that chap. He'll never know you saved him, an' if he know'd it
he wouldn't thank you. I'd 'a' put a hole right through his gizzard.
Now he's behind the poplar."

"It's luck," Lieutenant Clopton suggested.

"Maybe," said Kilpatrick. "Yonder he is ag'in. Luck won't save him
this time." He raised his rifle, glanced down the barrel, and pulled
the trigger. Simultaneously with the report an expression of disgust
passed over his face, and with an oath he struck the ground with his

"Don't tell me you missed him," said Clopton.

"Miss what?" exclaimed Kilpatrick scornfully. "If he ain't drunk,
somebody pulled him out of the way."

"I told you it was luck," commented Clopton.

"Shucks! don't tell me. Luck's like lightnin'. She never hits twice in
the same place."

Kilpatrick sank back in the gully and gave himself up to ruminating.
He leaned on his elbows and pulled up little tufts of grass and weeds
growing here and there. Lieutenant Clopton, looking across towards the
poplar, suddenly reached for the sharp-shooter's rifle, but Kilpatrick
placed his hand on it jealously.

"Give me the gun. Yonder's a Yank in full view."

Kilpatrick, still holding his rifle, raised himself and looked.

"Why, he's hanging out a flag of truce," said Clopton. "What does the
fellow mean?"

"It's a message," said Kilpatrick, "an' here's the answer." With that
he raised his rifle, dropped it gently in the palm, of his left hand,
and fired.

"You saw the hankcher jump, didn't you?" he exclaimed. "Well, that
lets us out. That's my Mickey. He wants tobacco, and I want coffee an'
tea. Come, watch me swap him out of his eye teeth."

Then Kilpatrick went to a clump of broom sedge and drew forth a wallet
containing several pounds of prepared smoking tobacco and a bundle of
plug tobacco, and in a few moments the trio were picking their way
through the underwood towards the open.


Matters were getting critical for Squire Fambrough. He had vowed and
declared that he would never be a refugee, but he had a responsibility
on his hands that he had not counted on. That responsibility was his
daughter Julia, twenty-two years old, and as obstinate as her father.
The Squire had sent off his son's wife and her children, together with
as many negroes as had refused to go into the Union lines. He had
expected his daughter to go at the same time, but when the time
arrived, the fair Julia showed that she had a mind of her own. She
made no scene, she did not go into hysterics; but when everything was
ready, she asked her father if he was going. He said he would follow
along after a while. She called to a negro, and made him take her
trunks and band-boxes from the wagon and carry them into the house,
while Squire Fambrough stood scratching his head.

"Why don't you make her come?" his daughter-in-law asked, somewhat

"Well, Susannah," the Squire remarked, "I ain't been a jestice of the
peace and a married man, off and on for forty year, without findin'
out when to fool with the wimen sek an' when not to fool wi' 'em."

"I'd make her come," said the daughter-in-law.

"I give you lief, Susannah, freely an' fully. Lay your baby some'rs
wher' it won't git run over, an' take off your surplus harness, an' go
an' fetch her out of the house an' put her in the buggy."

But the daughter-in-law treated the courteous invitation with
proper scorn, and the small caravan moved off, leaving the fair Julia
and her father in possession of the premises. According to human
understanding, the refugees got off just in the nick of time. A day or
two afterwards, the Union army, figuratively speaking, marched up,
looked over Squire Fambrough's front palings, and then fell back to
reflect over the situation. Shortly afterwards the Confederate
army marched up, looked over the Squire's back palings, and also
fell back to reflect. Evidently the situation was one to justify
reflection, for presently both armies fell back still farther.
These movements were so courteous and discreet--were such a
colossal display of etiquette--that war seemed to be out of the
question. Of course there were the conservative pickets, the
thoughtful videttes, and the careful sharp-shooters, ready to
occasion a little bloodshed, accidentally or intentionally. But by
far the most boisterously ferocious appendages of the two armies
were the two brass bands. They were continually challenging each
other, beginning early in the morning and ending late in the
afternoon; one firing off "Dixie," and the other "Yankee Doodle." It
was "Yankee Doodle, howdy do?" and "Doodle-doodle, Dixie, too," like
two chanticleers challenging each other afar off.

This was the situation as it appeared to Squire Fambrough and his
daughter. On this particular morning the sun was shining brightly, and
the birds were fluttering joyously in the budding trees. Miss Julia
had brought her book out into the grove of venerable oaks which was
the chief beauty of the place, and had seated herself on a rustic
bench that was built around one of the trees. Just as she had become
interested, she heard a rifle-shot. She moved uneasily, but fell to
reading again, and was apparently absorbed in the book, when she heard
another shot. Then she threw the book down and rose to her feet,
making a very pretty centerpiece in the woodland setting.

"Oh! what is the matter with everything?" she exclaimed. "There's the
shooting again! How can I read books and sit quietly here while the
soldiers are preparing to fight? Oh, me! I don't know what to do! If
there should be a battle here, I don't know what would become of us."

Julia, in her despair, was fair to look upon. Her gown of striped
homespun stuff, simply made, set off to admiration her strong but
supple figure. Excitement added a new lustre to her eye and gave a
heightened color to the rose that bloomed on her cheeks. She stood a
moment as if listening, and then a faint smile showed on her lips. She
heard her father calling:

"Jule! Jule! O Jule!"

"Here I am, father!" she cried. "What is it?"

"Well, the Lord he'p my soul! I've been huntin' for you high an' low.
Did you hear that shootin'? I 'lowed may be you'd been took prisoner
an' carried bodaciously off. Didn't I hear you talkin' to somebody?"

Squire Fambrough pulled off his hat and scratched his head. His face,
set in a fringe of gray beard, was kindly and full of humor, but it
contained not a few of the hard lines of experience.

"No, father," said Julia, in reply to the Squire's question. "I was
only talking to myself."

"Jest makin' a speech, eh? Well, I don't blame you, honey. I'm a great
mind to jump out here in the clearin' an' yell out my sentiments so
that both sides can hear 'em."

"Why, what is the matter, father?"

"I'm mad, honey! I'm jest nachally stirred up--dog my cats ef I ain't!
Along at fust I did hope there wouldn't be no fightin' in this
neighborhood, but now I jest want to see them two blamed armies light
into one another, tooth and toe-nail."

"Why, father!" Julia made a pretty gesture of dismay. "How can you
talk so?"

"Half of my niggers is gone," said Squire Fambrough; "one side has got
my hosses, and t'other side has stole my cattle. The Yankees has
grabbed my grist mill, an' the Confeds has laid holt of my corn crib.
One army is squattin' in my tater patch, and t'other one is roostin'
in my cow pastur'. Do you reckon I was born to set down here an' put
up wi' that kind of business?"

"But, father, what can you do? How can you help yourself? For heaven's
sake, let's go away from here!"

"Great Moses, Jule! Have you gone an' lost what little bit of common
sense you was born with? Do you reckon I'm a-goin' to be a-refugeein'
an' a-skee-daddlin' across the country like a skeer'd rabbit at my
time of life? I hain't afeared of nary two armies they can find room
for on these hills! Hain't I got one son on one side an' another son
on t'other side? Much good they are doin', too. If they'd a-felt like
me they'd a fit both sides. Do you reckon I'm a-gwine to be drove
off'n the place where I was born, an' where your granpappy was born,
an' where your mother lies buried? No, honey!"

"But, father, you know we can't stay here. Suppose there should be a

"Come, honey! come!" There was a touch of petulance in the old man's
tone. "Don't get me flustrated. I told you to go when John's wife an'
the children went. By this time you'd 'a' been out of hearin' of the

"But, father, how could I go and leave you here all by yourself?" The
girl laid her hand on the Squire's shoulder caressingly.

"No," exclaimed the Squire, angrily; "stay you would, stay you did,
an' here you are!"

"Yes, and now I want to go away, and I want you to go with me. All the
horses are not taken, and the spring wagon and the barouche are

"Don't come a-pesterin' me, honey! I'm pestered enough as it is. Lord,
if I had the big men here what started the war, I'd take 'em an' butt
their cussed heads together tell you wouldn't know 'em from a lot of
spiled squashes."

"Now, don't get angry and say bad words, father."

"I can't help it, Jule; I jest can't help it. When the fuss was
a-brewin' I sot down an' wrote to Jeems Buchanan, and told him, jest
as plain as the words could be put on paper, that war was boun' to
come if he didn't look sharp; an' then when old Buck dropped out, I
sot down an' wrote to Abe Lincoln an' told him that coercion wouldn't
work worth a cent, but conciliation----"

"Wait, father!" Julia held up her pretty hand. "I hear some one
calling. Listen!"

Not far away they heard the voice of a negro. "Marse Dave Henry! O
Marse Dave Henry!"

"Hello! Who the nation are you hollerin' at?" said Squire Fambrough as
a youngish looking negro man came in view. "An' where did you come
from, an' where are you goin'?"

"Howdy, mistiss--howdy, marster!" The negro took off his hat as he
came up.

"What's your name?" asked the Squire.

"I'm name Tuck, suh. None er you all ain't seed nothin' er Marse----"

"Who do you belong to?"

"I b'longs ter de Cloptons down dar in Georgy, suh. None er you-all
ain't seed nothin'----"

"What are you doin' here?" demanded Squire Fambrough, somewhat
angrily. "Don't you know you are liable to get killed any minute?
Ain't you makin' your way to the Yankee army?"

"No, suh." The negro spoke with unction. "I'm des a-huntin' my young
marster, suh. He name Dave Henry Clopton. Dat what we call him--Marse
Henry. None er you-all ain't seed 'im, is you?"

"Jule," said the Squire, rubbing his nose thoughtfully, "ain't that
the name of the chap that used to hang around here before the Yankees
got too close?"

"Do you mean Lieutenant Clopton, father?" asked Julia, showing some

"Yessum." Tuck grinned and rubbed his hands together. "Marse Dave
Henry is sholy a lieutender in de company, an' mistiss she say he'd a
done been a giner'l ef dey wa'nt so much enviousness in de army."

"I saw him this morning--I mean--" Julia blushed and hesitated. "I
mean, I heard him talking out here in the grove."

"Who was he talking to, Jule?" The Squire put the question calmly and

There was a little pause. Julia, still blushing, adjusted an imaginary
hair-pin. The negro looked sheepishly from one to the other. The
Squire repeated his question.

"Who was he talking to, Jule?"

"Nobody but me," said the young lady, growing redder. Her embarrassment
was not lessened by an involuntary "eh--eh," from the negro. Squire
Fambrough raised his eyes heavenwards and allowed both his heavy hands
to drop helplessly by his side.

"What was he talkin' about?" The old man spoke with apparent

"N-o-t-h-i-n-g," said Julia, demurely, looking at her pink finger-nails.
"He just asked me if I thought it would rain, and I told him I
didn't know; and then he said the spring was coming on very rapidly,
and I said, 'Yes, I thought it was.' And then he had found a bunch of
violets and asked me if I would accept them, and I said, 'Thank you.'"

"Land of the livin' Moses!" exclaimed Squire Fambrough, lifting his
hands above his head and allowing them to fall heavily again. "And
they call this war!"

"Yessum!" The negro's tone was triumphant. "Dat sholy wuz Marse Dave
Henry. War er no war, dat wuz him. Dat des de way he goes 'mongst de
ladies. He gi'um candy yit, let 'lone flowers. Shoo! You can't tell me
nothin' 'tall 'bout Marse Dave Henry."

"What are you wanderin' 'round here in the woods for?" asked the
Squire. His tone was somewhat severe. "Did anybody tell you he was

"No, suh!" replied Tuck. "Dey tol' me back dar at de camps dat I'd
fin' 'im out on de picket line, an' when I got dar dey tol' me he wuz
out dis a-way, whar dey wuz some sharp-shootin' gwine on, but I ain't
foun' 'im yit."

"Ain't you been with him all the time?" The Squire was disposed to
treat the negro as a witness for the defence.

"Lor, no, suh! I des now come right straight fum Georgy. Mistiss--she
Marse Dave Henry's ma--she hear talk dat de solyers ain't got no cloze
fer ter w'ar an' no vittles fer ter eat, skacely, an' she tuck'n made
me come an' fetch 'im a box full er duds an' er box full er vittles.
She put cake in dar, yit, 'kaze I smelt it whiles I wuz handlin' de
box. De boxes, dey er dar at de camp, an' here me, but wharbouts is
Marse Dave Henry? Not ter be a-hidin' fum somebody, he de hardest
white man ter fin' what I ever laid eyes on. I speck I better be
knockin' 'long. Good-by, marster; good-by, young mistiss. Ef I don'
fin' Marse Dave Henry no wheres, I'll know whar ter come an' watch fer

The Squire watched the negro disappear in the woods, and then turned
to his daughter. To his surprise, her eyes were full of tears; but
before he could make any comment, or ask any question, he heard the
noise of tramping feet in the woods, and presently saw two Union
soldiers approaching. Almost immediately Julia called his attention to
three soldiers coming from the Confederate side.

"I believe in my soul we're surrounded by both armies," remarked the
Squire dryly. "But don't git skeer'd, honey. I'm goin' to see what
they're trespassin' on my premises for."


"Upon my sowl," said O'Halloran, as he and Captain Somerville went
forward, the big Irishman leading the way, "I'm afeard I'm tollin' you
into a trap."

"How?" asked the captain.

"Why, there's three of the Johnnies comin', sor, an' the ould man an'
the gurrul make five."

"Halt!" said the captain, using the word by force of habit. The two
paused, and the captain took in the situation at a glance. Then he
turned to the big Irishman, with a queer look on his face.

"What is it, sor?"

"I'm in for it now. That is my father yonder, and the young lady is my

"The Divvle an' Tom Walker!" exclaimed O'Halloran. "'Tis quite a
family rayanion, sor."

"I don't know whether to make myself known or not. What could have
possessed them to stay here? I'll see whether they know me." As they
went forward, the captain plucked O'Halloran by the sleeve. "I'll be
shot if the Johnny with his arm in the sling isn't my brother."

"I was expectin' it, sor," said the big Irishman, giving matters a
humorous turn. "Soon the cousins will be poppin' out from under the

By this time the two were near enough to the approaching Confederates
to carry on a conversation by lifting their voices a little.

"Hello, Johnny," said O'Halloran.

"Hello, Yank," replied Kilpatrick.

"What's the countersign, Johnny?"

"Tobacco. What is it on your side, Yank?"

"Tay an' coffee, Johnny."

"You are mighty right," Kilpatrick exclaimed. "Stack your arms agin a

"The same to you," said O'Halloran.

The Irishman, using his foot as a broom, cleared the dead leaves and
twigs from a little space of ground, where he deposited his bundle,
and Kilpatrick did the same. John Fambrough, the wounded Confederate,
went forward to greet his father and sister, and Lieutenant Clopton
went with him. The Squire was not in a good humor.

"I tell you what, John," he said to his son, "I don't like to be
harborin' nary side. It's agin' my principles. I don't like this
colloguin' an' palaverin' betwixt folks that ought to be by good
rights a-knockin' one another on the head. If they want to collogue
an' palaver, why don't they go som'ers else?"

The Squire's son tried to explain, but the old gentleman hooted at the
explanation. "Come on, Jule, let's go and see what they're up to."

As they approached, the Irishman glanced at Captain Somerville, and
saw that he had turned away, cap in hand, to hide his emotion.

"You're just in time," the Irishman said to Squire Fambrough in a
bantering tone, "to watch the continding armies. This mite of a Johnny
will swindle the Government, if I don't kape me eye on him."

"Is this what you call war?" the Squire inquired sarcastically. "Who
axed you to come trespassin' on my land?"

"Oh, we'll put the leaves back where we found them," said Kilpatrick,
"if we have to git a furlough."

"Right you are!" said the Irishman.

"It is just a little trading frolic among the boys!" Captain
Somerville turned to the old man with a courteous bow. "They will do
no harm. I'll answer for that."

"Well, I'll tell you how I feel about it!" Squire Fambrough exclaimed
with some warmth. "I'm in here betwixt the hostiles. They ain't nobody
here but me an' my daughter. We don't pester nobody, an' we don't want
nobody to pester us. One of my sons is in the Union army, I hear tell,
an' the other is in the Confederate army when he ain't in the
hospital. These boys, you see, found their old daddy a-straddle of the
fence, an' one clomb down one leg on the Union side, an' t'other one
clomb down t'other leg on the Confederate side."

"That is what I call an interesting situation," said the captain,
drawing a long breath. "Perhaps I have seen your Union son."

"Maybe so, maybe so," assented the Squire.

"Perhaps you have seen him yourself since the war began?"

Before the Squire could make any reply, Julia rushed at the captain
and threw her arms around his neck, crying, "O brother George, I know

The Squire seemed to be dazed by this discovery. He went towards the
captain slowly. The tears streamed down his face and the hand he held
out trembled.

"George," he exclaimed, "God A'mighty knows I'm glad to see you!"

O'Halloran and Kilpatrick had paused in the midst of their traffic to
watch this scene, but when they saw the gray-haired old man crying and
hugging his son, and the young girl clinging to the two, they were
confused. O'Halloran turned and kicked his bundles.

"Take all the tay and coffee, you bloody booger! Just give me a
pipeful of the weed."

Kilpatrick shook his fist at the big Irishman.

"Take the darned tobacco, you red-mouthed Mickey! What do I want with
your tea and coffee?" Then both started to go a little way into the
woods. Lieutenant Clopton following. The captain would have called
them back, but they wouldn't accept the invitation.

"We are just turnin' our backs, sor, while you hold a family orgie,"
said O'Halloran. "Me an' this measly Johnny will just go on an'
complate the transaction of swappin'."

At this moment Tuck reappeared on the scene. Seeing his young master,
he stopped still and looked at him, and then broke out into loud

"Marse Dave Henry, whar de namer goodness you been? You better come
read dish yer letter what yo' ma writes you. I'm gwine tell mistiss
she come mighty nigh losin' a likely nigger, an' she'll rake you over
de coals, mon."

"Why, howdy, Tuck," exclaimed Lieutenant Clopton. "Ain't you glad to
see me?"

"Yasser, I speck I is." The negro spoke in a querulous and somewhat
doubtful tone, as he produced a letter from the lining of his hat.
"But I'd 'a' been a heap gladder ef I hadn't mighty nigh trapsed all
de gladness out'n me."

Young Clopton took the letter and read it with a smile on his lips and
a dimness in his eyes. The negro, left to himself, had his attention
attracted by the coffee and tobacco lying exposed on the ground. He
looked at the display, scratching his head.

"Boss, is dat sho nuff coffee?"

"It is that same," said O'Halloran.

"De ginnywine ole-time coffee?" insisted the negro.

"'Tis nothin' else, simlin-head."

"Marse Dave Henry," the negro yelled, "run here an' look at dish yer
ginnywine coffee! Dey's nuff coffee dar fer ter make mistiss happy de
balance er her days. Some done spill out!" he exclaimed. "Boss, kin I
have dem what's on de groun'?"

"Take 'em," said O'Halloran, "an' much good may they do you."

"One, two, th'ee, fo', fi', sick, sev'n." The negro counted the grains
as he picked them up. "O Marse Dave Henry, run here an' look! I got
sev'n grains er ginnywine coffee. I'm gwine take um ter mistiss."

The Irishman regarded the negro with curiosity. Then taking the dead
branch of a tree he drew a line several yards in length between
himself and Kilpatrick.

"D'ye see that line there?" he said to the negro.

"Dat ar mark? Oh, yasser, I sees de mark."

"Very well. On that side of the line you are in slavery--on this side
the line you are free."

"Who? Me?"

"Who else but you?"

"I been hear talk er freedom, but I ain't seed 'er yit, an' I dunner
how she feel." The negro scratched his head and grinned expectantly.

"'Tis as I tell you," said the Irishman.

"I b'lieve I'll step 'cross an' see how she feel." The negro stepped
over the line, and walked up and down as if to test the matter
physically. "'Tain't needer no hotter ner no colder on dis side dan
what 'tis on dat," he remarked. Then he cried out to his young master:
"Look at me, Marse Dave Henry; I'm free now."

"All right." The young man waved his hand without taking his eyes from
the letter he was reading.

"He take it mos' too easy fer ter suit me," said the negro. Then he
called out to his young master again: "O Marse Dave Henry! Don't you
tell mistiss dat I been free, kase she'll take a bresh-broom an' run
me off'n de place when I go back home."


Squire Fambrough insisted that his son should go to the house and look
it over for the sake of old times, and young Clopton went along to
keep Miss Julia company. O'Halloran, Kilpatrick, and the negro stayed
where they were--the white men smoking their pipes, and the negro
chewing the first "mannyfac" tobacco he had seen in many a day.

The others were not gone long. As they came back, a courier was seen
riding through the woods at break-neck speed, going from the Union
lines to those of the Confederates, and carrying a white flag.
Kilpatrick hailed him, and he drew rein long enough to cry out, as he
waved his flag:

"Lee has surrendered!"

"I was looking out for it," said Kilpatrick, "but dang me if I hadn't
ruther somebody had a-shot me right spang in the gizzard."

Lieutenant Clopton took out his pocket-knife and began to whittle a
stick. John Fambrough turned away, and his sister leaned her hands on
his shoulder and began to weep. Squire Fambrough rubbed his chin
thoughtfully and sighed.

"It had to be, father," the captain said. "It's a piece of news that
brings peace to the land."

"Oh, yes, but it leaves us flat. No money, and nothing to make a crop

"I have Government bonds that will be worth a hundred thousand
dollars. The interest will keep us comfortably."

"For my part," said Clopton, "I have nothing but this free nigger."

"You b'lieve de half er dat," spoke up the free nigger. "Mistiss been
savin' her cotton craps, an' ef she got one bale she got two

The captain figured a moment. "They will bring more than a hundred
thousand dollars."

"I have me two arrums," said O'Halloran.

"I've got a mighty fine pack of fox-hounds," remarked Kilpatrick with
real pride.

There was a pause in the conversation. In the distance could be heard
the shouting of the Union soldiers and the band with its "Yankee
Doodle, howd'y-do?" Suddenly Clopton turned to Captain Fambrough:

"I want to ask you how many troops have you got over there--fighting

The captain laughed. Then he put his hand to his mouth and said in a
stage whisper:

"Five companies."

"Well, dang my hide!" exclaimed Kilpatrick.

"What is your fighting force?" Captain Fambrough asked.

"Four companies," said Clopton.

"Think o' that, sir!" cried the Irishman; "an' me out there defendin'
meself ag'in a whole army."

"More than that," said Clopton, "our colonel is a Connecticut man."

"Shake!" the captain exclaimed. "My colonel is a Virginian."

"Lord 'a' mercy! Lord 'a' mercy!" It was Squire Fambrough who spoke.
"I'm a-goin' off some'rs an' ontangle the tangle we've got into."

Soon the small company separated. The Squire went a short distance
towards the Union army with his new-found son, who was now willing to
call himself George Somerville Fambrough. Kilpatrick and the negro
went trudging back to the Confederate camp, while Clopton lingered
awhile, saying something of great importance to the fair Julia and

His remarks and her replies were those which precede and follow both
comedy and tragedy. The thunders of war cannot drown them, nor can the
sunshine of peace render them commonplace.



  The rose is such a lady--
    So stately, fresh, and sweet;
  It joys to hold her image
    The rain pool at her feet.

  They look such common lasses,
    Those red pinks in a line;
  The rose is such a lady--
    So dignified and fine.

  The winds would wish to kiss her,
    And yet they scarcely dare;
  The rose is such a lady--
    So courteous, pure, and fair.

  Here's one come from a garden
    To die within this book--
  See, in the faded features
    The old lady-like look!



Seated in an arm-chair, now feebly turning over the leaves of his
"Souvenirs of Forty Years," now letting his dimmed eyes wander
listlessly over the broad expanse of fields and woodlands outside the
windows, Ferdinand de Lesseps, the great Frenchman, drags out the
agony of his old age.

The visitor to him in his retreat arrives at La Chesnaye to some
extent attuned to melancholy, for the long diligence ride from the
nearest railway station, twenty-four kilometres away, is across a most
desolate country. This part of the ancient duchy of Berry is one of
the districts in France which has most suffered by the ruin of the
vine-culture; the lands seem deserted and abandoned; the roads are
neglected, and little life is seen anywhere till the sleepy burgh of
Vatan is reached. From Vatan, which is a market-town on the old and
now disused high-road from Paris to Toulouse, to the chateau of La
Chesnaye, there are four more kilometres of road across an equally
desolate country to be taken. The buildings of the home farm are the
first human habitations that one sees all the long way. An oppressive
sense of desolation imposes itself on even the casual wayfarer, and
prepares for the sorrowful sight that awaits him who goes to La
Chesnaye to salute the fallen greatness of the old man who but two
years ago was the greatest Frenchman in France.

The chateau of La Chesnaye, a modest country-house of irregular shape
and flanked at the angles with towers, has been in the possession of
M. de Lesseps for fifty years. Except for a large modern wing, it
stands just as Agnes Sorel, its first occupant, left it. In her days
it had served as a hunting-box for her royal patron and the Berry
squires, and at present is still surrounded with fields scantily
timbered. There is no well-kept lawn, but the fields of grass are full
of violets, and there is a trim look about the stables. On a bright
day the white of the stone, contrasted with the green of the grass,
gives a cheerful look to the scene, but it is indescribably mournful
of aspect in the days of rain and snow and wind.

About half a mile on the road before the chateau is in sight, an
avenue of trees is reached. "Those trees were planted by M. de Lesseps
himself, forty years ago, and every time that he passes this way he
relates the fact."

So spoke to me the English governess of the De Lesseps children, whom
Madame de Lesseps had despatched to meet me with the pony-carriage at

"The countess is terribly busy to-day with her papers, for she is
expecting a barrister from Paris, who is to receive some instructions
in view of the new trial; but she will manage to give you an hour, and
wants you to drive to church with her, so that you can talk on the
way." As we entered the courtyard the countess's carriage was in
waiting at the front entrance. It was the landau of the days of
triumphant drives in the Champs Élysées, and the horses were the same
pair which excited the admiration and envy of the connoisseurs of the
Avenue des Acacias, "Juliette" and "Panama," which latter is now never
called by that name. It is talked about as "the other," for the
ill-fated word, Panama, is never even whispered, lest any echo of it
should reach the ears of him to whom this word has meant ruin and
disgrace and a broken heart. I waited for the countess at the bottom
of the spiral stair-case, and presently saw a lady descending, who
greeted me in a familiar voice, but whom I failed to recognize. "But,
yes," she said, holding out her hand, "I am Madame de Lesseps. I have
changed, have I not?"


When I last met Madame de Lesseps in Paris, though at that time the
shadow of the present was already upon her, she was in the full of her
matronly beauty, large, ample, and flourishing. It was a wasted woman
who addressed me, pinched and thin. "If I were to remove my veil," she
added, "you would see an even greater change."

"It is a sad moment that you have chosen to visit us, and you find us
in terrible circumstances," she said as we drove away. Then turning to
the lady who accompanied her, she remarked, "This is the first time I
have been out for three weeks, and I ought not to have gone out
to-day, except for the fact that I can't miss going to church again.
It is the only comfort I have left to me. All my days and most of my
nights, when not attending on my husband, are taken up answering
letters and telegrams which keep pouring in upon me from all parts of
the world. And then I am in constant correspondence with the lawyers
in Paris as to the prosecution of my son for corruption, and the
revision of the last judgment of the Court of Appeal."

The church which is attended by the La Chesnaye party is situated in a
village about three miles off, which is called Guilly, "the mistletoe
hamlet," as all the trees around are covered with this parasite. We
were passing a fine old oak tree, the upper part of which was loaded
with mistletoe, when the lady who was with us laughed scornfully, and,
pointing, said: "One would say Herz, Arton, and the rest," referring
to the Panama parasites. "Would you believe me," said Madame de
Lesseps, "that until these recent revelations I had never even heard
the names of either Arton or Herz or the Baron de Reinach?"

[Illustration: COUNT DE LESSEPS IN 1869.]

Outside the church was standing a _char-à-banc_ drawn by two horses,
and it was in this that, after service, I returned to La Chesnaye with
the children and the governesses. It was interesting to see how
devoted the people of Guilly seem to be to the De Lesseps family, and
how the men and women bowed and courtesied as the countess came out
of church. Here, as at Vatan and in all the district, the love and
respect for "Monsieur le Comte" have been increased rather than
diminished by the persecutions to which he has been subjected. It was
on the great fair-day at Vatan that the news of his condemnation was
made public, and at once the villagers, in sign of mourning,
stopped the public ball which is a _fête_ to which the young
people of the district look forward for months beforehand. Sturdy
Berrichon lads have been seen to flourish their sticks and heard
to say that the Parisians had better keep their hands off "Monsieur le
Comte." Nor is it surprising that in his own country M. de Lesseps
should be loved and venerated. Always delighting in acts of
kindness, his generosity towards his poor neighbors throughout the
district has been constant and large-handed. Never a marriage
takes place in any of the surrounding villages but that a handsome
present from La Chesnaye is thrown into the bride's _corbeille_.
The children are dressed for confirmation at the expense of the
chateau; layettes are found for poor mothers, and no case of
distress is allowed to pass unrelieved. Since the heavy losses which
the Panama failure has entailed on the family, no change nor
diminution in these liberalities has been made. But perhaps what
the people in the district like the best in the La Chesnaye folk is
their extreme simplicity. Chateau folk are not generally very popular
in France, and certainly not in republican circumscriptions,
because republican electors of the peasant class have inherited
prejudices about them; and if the De Lesseps family is so very
popular, it is because of the extreme simplicity of their manners and
of the way in which they live the lives of the people around them. For
instance, not the children alone, but even the elegant Madame de
Lesseps herself, are dressed in clothes purchased and made in Vatan.
Nothing is got from Paris, and the Vatan people are highly pleased
with the unusual compliment thus paid to them. By the church at Guilly
is an orphanage, which was founded by the De Lesseps, and is
entirely kept up at their expense. It is a rule with Madame de
Lesseps to pay a visit to this orphanage each Sunday after mass,
and, accordingly, as she left church she asked me to return home
with the children. Of these there are now seven at home; Matthew, who
has just returned on sick leave from the Soudan, being in Paris near
his stepbrother Charles. Ismail is serving in the army as a
soldier in a regiment of _chasseurs_ at St. Germain; and the
eldest daughter, the Comtesse de Gontaut-Biron, is in Nice,
whither she has been sent by her doctors. Lolo, aged eighteen, is
the eldest girl at home; and Paul, a handsome lad of twelve, with
long ringlets down his back, is the eldest boy. The youngest children
are mere babies. There is Zi-Zi, a tiny little boy, with fair
curls and dark eyes; and Griselle, a charming little mite, who on
that Sunday was dressed in a Kate Greenaway bonnet and gown, and
looked sweetly pretty. The _char-à-banc_, spacious as it was, was
quite filled. Besides all the children from Lolo down to Zi-Zi, there
were the English and German governesses, Paul and Robert's tutor,
the niece of Madame de Lesseps who for many years past has lived
with the family, and an intimate friend, Mademoiselle Mimaut.

It was a merry party, and yet whenever the name of the poor old father
at home was mentioned, silence came over the prattle of the children.
"They all feel it deeply," said Madame de Lesseps to me later on,
"though their youth often gets the better of their feelings. And what
grieves them all most is, to know that their brother Charles, whom
they all love and respect like a second father, is in prison, whilst
they can run about. Zi-Zi and Griselle write to him every day at Mazas
or the Conciergerie, and send him violets, and little stories which
they compose for his amusement, spending long hours inking their
fingers over their paper."

About half-way home the carriage passed the rural postman trudging
along on his daily thirty-mile round. The children would have the
carriage stopped, and, though it was quite full, place was made for
him. Father Pierre seemed quite a favorite with the children, for is
it not he, as little Griselle said, who brings letters from brother
Charles? Charles, it seems, writes every day, and his letters, to
judge by what every member of the family told me, are admirable in
their manly unselfishness. There is never a word of complaint about
the wretchedness of his position; his only anxiety is about his
father, and he is ready to undergo everything so that the old man may
be spared a moment's pain. Ruined, disgraced, though not dishonored,
having to face a long period of imprisonment, which at his age and in
his physical condition may kill him, he affects in his letters the
greatest cheerfulness. Nor is his heroic unselfishness without its
reward. He is the idol of everybody at La Chesnaye and for miles
around. Only one complaint has escaped him since his confinement, and
that was when, during his hurried visit, under guard, to his father,
he went with the children for a favorite walk to a neighboring wood.
Here, as he was walking along the avenue which runs through some
magnificent timber, he looked around at the detectives behind him, and
said with a sigh: "And to-morrow I shall be again within four gray
walls." But immediately he added, that if he could only be allowed to
come and pass an afternoon in the wood with his brothers and sisters
every month, he would not mind his confinement in the least, and could
resign himself to the prospect of imprisonment for the rest of his
days. Yet he is past fifty-three, and his health has suffered terribly
from what he has undergone.

The half hour before lunch was spent by the children in showing their
pets. A prime favorite with them just now is a little Newfoundland
puppy, which has quite dethroned in their affections an old shepherd
dog, who, as Zi-Zi relates, "came one day and liked us so much that
she has never left us." Another pet of whom a great deal is made is an
African monkey which Matthew brought home from the Soudan. It is
called Bou-Bou, and when it is scolded it hides its face in its hands.
It is quite tame, and runs about without a chain.

Just before lunch the children set about picking violets, each a
bunch. This they do every day. One is for Charles at Mazas, another
for Madame de Lesseps, but the sweetest is for the old father to wear
in his buttonhole at lunch, which is the only meal he takes with the
family. The child whose bouquet is worn by the father is the proudest
child in Berry that day.

I could not refrain from a movement of the most painful surprise
when, after a few moments spent in the drawing-room, I was invited by
Madame de Lesseps into the room where her husband sat. I have known M.
de Lesseps for many years, and though the last time that I saw him he
was already under the influence of the sorrow of defeat--it was
just after he had been called before a magistrate, for examination--my
recollection of him had always been as of a man full of the most
surprising vitality and high spirits, keen, bright, energetic,
defying the wear of time, a man of eternal youth in spite of his
white hairs. I remembered him last, erect, with clear voice and
flashing eyes, and now I saw him huddled together in a chair, a wrap
about his knees, nodding his head as under sleep, pale, inert, and
with all the life gone out of his eyes. Behind him stood a large
screen tapestried with red stuff, against which the waxen whiteness
of his face and hands stood out in strong relief. How old he
looked, whom age had seemed to spare so long! For the most part
the head drooped forward on his chest, but now and then he raised it
listlessly and let his eyes wander round the room, or across the
panes on to the fields beyond. There was rarely recognition in his
glance; mostly a look of unalterable sadness--of wonder, it may be,
at the terrible hazards of life. Yet, when now and then one of the
children, who were crowding about his chair, pressed his hand or
kissed his cheek or said some words of endearment to him, the smile
which was one of his characteristics came over his face, and for a
brief moment he seemed himself again. Himself again--that is to say,
in the goodness and great-heartedness which more than all he has ever
done for France merited for him the name of the great Frenchman. For
greatness of heart has always been the keynote of the character of
Ferdinand de Lesseps. It was the secret of the indescribable
seduction which he exercised over everyone who came near him, from
emperor to laborer. It was to this quality of his that M. Renan,
albeit a sceptic himself, rendered such signal homage in the speech
in which he welcomed M. de Lesseps to the French Academy on the day
of his admittance.

"You were good to all who came," said M. Renan; "you made them feel
that their past would be effaced and that a new life lay before them.
In exchange you only asked them to share your enthusiasm in the work
which you had devoted to the interest of France. You held that most
people can amend if only one will forget their past. One day a whole
gang of convicts arrived at Panama and took work at the canal. The
Austrian consul demanded that they should be handed over to him; but
you delayed giving satisfaction to his request, and at the end of some
weeks the Austrian consulate was fully occupied in remitting home to
Austria, to their families, or, it may be, to their victims, the
moneys which these outcasts whom you had transformed into honest
workmen were earning with the work of their hands. You have declared
your faith in humanity. You have convinced yourself and tried to
convince others that men are loyal and good if only they have the
wherewithal to live. It is your opinion that it is only hunger that
makes men bad. 'Never,' said you in one of your lectures, 'have I had
cause for complaint against any of the workmen, although I have
employed outcasts, pariahs, and convicts. Work has redeemed even the
most dishonest. I have never been robbed, not even of a handkerchief.
It is a fact which I have proved, that men can be brought to do
anything by showing them kindness and by persuading them that they are
working in a cause of universal interest.' Thus you have made green
again what seemed withered for ever and aye. You have given, in a
century of unbelief, a startling proof of the efficacy of faith."

[Illustration: MADAME DE LESSEPS IN 1880.]

A thousand instances of this kindness of heart might be cited to show
that M. de Lesseps ever remained a chivalrous gentleman in the best
sense of the word. A trifling experience of my own may suffice. A few
days after my first visit to him, at the office of the Suez Canal, I
was dining at a house in the Cours-la-Reine. It was my first visit to
that house, a fact which somewhat contributed to my embarrassment in
what was one of my first experiences in Parisian society. Amongst the
guests was the editor of one of the principal French papers, and being
anxious to make his acquaintance, I asked our host to introduce me to
my _confrère_. The editor in question had no courtesies to waste upon
an insignificant foreigner, and acknowledged my bow with a reverence
of exaggerated profundity, bowing almost to the earth, and then
swinging round on his heel to continue a conversation with another
journalist, which had been interrupted by the introduction. I was left
standing in the middle of the room, with my eyes on the editor's back,
suffused with shame and mortification. M. de Lesseps saw the slight
thus inflicted on a young man, and from kindness of heart immediately
did what he could to efface it. From his place at the fire, where he
had been standing surrounded by the usual crowd of courtiers, he had
noticed the incident, and I saw him making his way across the
drawing-room towards me, exclaiming to those around him: "Oh, there is
a young man with whom I must have a few words!" He then took me by the
hand, drew me aside, and remained conversing with me until dinner was

[Illustration: COUNT DE LESSEPS IN 1880.]

In view of the awful change that, within so short a time, has been
made in this gentleman, I cannot but think that it must be attributed
to the shock produced in a very old man by an experience which
shows him that he has been mistaken all his life long. It is
terrible to wake up at eighty-five and find that things are not
what one has believed during his past life, and that the men whom
one has loved and respected are unworthy. I believe that what has
struck Ferdinand de Lesseps down in his chair, in full vitality, is
an immense disappointment, not at the failure of his hopes, for he
has always been indifferent to money, and has never had the wish to
leave his children large fortunes, but at the falseness of a creed
which was optimistic to the point of blindness. I believe that
Ferdinand de Lesseps is dying of a broken heart, broken by the immense
ingratitude of men. And if the loss of all the money that has been
sunk in the Panama mud and the pockets of the intrigants of the
Third Republic adds to his sorrow, it is certainly not for himself
nor his family, but for all those who are suffering because they
shared his belief in his star, and who blindly followed him to
ruin. He knew that they were of the humble, and often told me so.
"Panama will be carried out with the savings in woollen stockings of
the peasant and of the workman," he used to say. He has never been
self-seeking. He presented France with a concession, that of the Suez
Canal, estimated at one hundred millions of francs, and with
lands worth another thirty millions, and fought heroically for years
to render to his gift its greatest value. In the words of M. Renan,
the courage, the energy, the resources of all sorts expended by M.
de Lesseps in this struggle were nothing short of prodigious. In
exchange he took for himself enough to enable him to lead the life
of a gentleman and to do good around him. Each of his children he
endowed with not more than seventy thousand francs, the revenues
from which, together with his wife's private fortune, are now all
that remain to the family. I firmly believe that all his life he
acted only from feelings of philanthropy and from patriotism of the
most chivalrous type. He never had any desire to leave a large
fortune, and I can remember his saying to me, very emphatically, that
his children must do as he had done; and that they would do so if
they were worthy of his name; and that he never wished to leave them
large fortunes, but an honorable name, a love for their country equal
to his, and an example which he hoped they would follow. "Let them
work as I have done," said this most tender of fathers.

It seems that not even this heritage of an honored name is, if the
persecutors of the old man can have their way, to be left to his
family. Since he has been down the number of his adversaries has of
course increased tenfold. Even those who owe him all--many officials
at the Suez Canal Company, for instance, who owe their positions and
fortunes to his genius--seem glad to revenge themselves for their
obligation. De Lesseps has done too much good to men not to be hated,
and it is to be regretted that poor De Maupassant cannot wield his pen
in analysis of the motives which are actuating his former dependents
in their endeavors to renounce all solidarity with the dying
octogenarian of La Chesnaye. I visited the offices of the Suez Canal
Company a few days ago, and, prepared as one is for human ingratitude,
it was distressing in the extreme to see how poor a thing to charm
with was the name at the sound of which, as I can well remember, all
the flunkeys of the place in livery or black frock coat doubled up in
the days that are past. The lion is down, and every ass of Paris has a
heel to kick him with.

[Illustration: COUNT DE LESSEPS IN 1892.]

On the other hand, the adversities of the De Lesseps family have
revealed to them the immense number of friends which they possess in
all parts of the world. Letters and telegrams keep pouring in from all
sides to La Chesnaye, and all the available pens are kept busy most of
the day and night in answering the kindest expressions of sympathy,
many from utter strangers. "This is the only thing that gives me
courage to bear it all," said Madame de Lesseps. Helene told me, with
some amusement, that a Spanish banker had the day before written to
Madame de Lesseps to offer her a present of a million, and that there
had been many similar offers of pecuniary assistance from people who
believed the family to be totally ruined. When Charles was down at La
Chesnaye, and was walking in the woods with his escort behind him, a
serious offer was made to him by friends who had gathered around him,
to effect his rescue if he would but give the word. As for tokens of
sympathy from all the country around, they are unending. The farmer at
the home-farm, which was built by M. de Lesseps, and which has been in
the occupation of the present tenants from the beginning, was at
dinner when the paper containing the news of Charles's conviction and
sentence reached him. "He turned quite white," said his wife to me,
"and rushed out of the house and went roaming about the woods like a
demented man until late at night. And I have cried every time I have
thought of M. Charles, whom I knew when he was a baby not higher than
my knee." But perhaps the most devoted friend that remains to the
family is M. de Lesseps's valet, who since his master's fall has never
left him for more than ten minutes together, sleeping on a mattress in
his bedroom, and waiting on him patiently all day and all night.
"Don't let anyone, I don't care who it may be," he says, clenching his
fist, "come near my master. I will be killed before any offence shall
be put upon him." And though one is rather sceptical as to such
professions, I fully believe that in this case they are sincere. It
was touching to note with what reverence, when lunch was served, this
valet approached his master, and, mindful of old formalities of
respect, bowed and said that Monsieur the Count was served; to note
with what womanly gentleness this strong man lifted his feeble master
up and guided his tottering steps into the adjoining dining-room.

What a beautiful family it was, to be sure, that gathered round that
table! Paul with his girlish ringlets, Robert also in curls. Helene,
who sat next to her father, with her jet-black hair loose down her
back, and her bright eyes contrasting with the ivory pallor of her
face, worn out as the poor child is with care and sorrow and hard work
as her mother's penwoman. Then there was Lolo, a young lady of
eighteen, roughly dressed, but of great elegance, who looked even
sadder than the rest, but who tried to be bright and gay; and on the
other side of her, Solange, who though she is quite a woman in
appearance, hates to be considered so, and wants to be treated as a
child, and refuses to wear long dresses, and loves to climb trees in
the park and to give picnics to her little brothers and sisters in a
mud hovel which she has constructed in the garden. Then there is Zi-Zi
and Griselle--more than twenty in all around the long oval table.
Every now and then one of the children rises from its seat, and runs
up to the old father and kisses him on the cheek, or presses his hand;
and I think all envied Helene who sat next to him and could caress him
when she liked. I was seated just opposite the old man, and I am
afraid my presence disturbed him; for he seemed to listen to what I
said, and to wonder who I was, and what I might want. I shall never
forget the sight of him as he faced me, sunk down in his chair, with
one trembling hand holding his napkin to his breast, and feebly with
the other guiding the morsels to his mouth. He seemed to eat with some
appetite, though under persistent drowsiness, which was only shaken
off for a moment when his wife, who came in late, took her seat at the
table. Then his head was lifted, and a bright look came into his eyes,
as if of salute to the comrade of his life. Whatever Madame de Lesseps
may have suffered, I am sure that she feels herself repaid each time
that those eyes are so lifted to hers. The _dejeuner_ was a simple
though ample one, the _menu_ being in keeping with the manner of life
at Chesnaye, which is that of comfort without ostentation. The wine is
grown by Madame de Lesseps herself, on vineyards of her own planting,
and is that "gray wine" which is so much appreciated by connoisseurs.
It has a beautiful color in a cut-glass decanter. The conversation was
a halting one. Each tried to be gay, each tried to forget the deep
shadow that lay over that family gathering. When the old man's eyes
wandered around the table as if in quest of some one whom he desired
but who was not there, a silence imposed itself on all, for all knew
whom he was seeking, and where that dear one was.

In his buttonhole was Helene's bouquet of violets, underneath which
peeped out the rosette of the grand officer of the Legion of Honor,
alas, in jeopardy!

We took coffee in the drawing-room. It was served on a table which
stood underneath a fine portrait of Agnes Sorel, once the mistress of
the house. Facing us were two pictures of the inauguration of the Suez
Canal. The furniture was covered with tapestries mostly from the
needle of the countess.

It was here that Madame de Lesseps told me of the old man's present
life. "He has the fixed idea that the Queen of England will come and
make all things right. He often rises in his chair and asks if Queen
Victoria has arrived, and when any visitor comes he thinks that it is
she at last."

Then blanching the countess added, "You think, sir, do you not, that
he is in ignorance of what has happened? You do not think that he has
any suspicion? Sometimes the dreadful thought troubles me that he
knows all, and that, great-hearted gentleman that he is, he lends
himself to this most tragic comedy that we are playing. I sometimes
doubt. Would not that be terrible? And again there are times when I am
convinced that our efforts to hide all that is, are successful. We
give him last year's papers to read. I have had collections sent down.
Formerly we used to cut out or erase parts which we did not want him
to see, but he seemed to notice the alterations, and so we ordered
down papers of a year ago. And it is quite pathetic to hear the
remarks he occasionally makes. Thus a few days ago he called me to his
side in high glee, and said how happy he was to hear that his old
friend M. Ressman had been appointed Italian Ambassador to France, an
event of more than a year ago. There are times, too, when he gets very
impatient at being kept down here, and what he misses chiefly is the
French Academy. He is constantly telling me how anxious he is to
attend, and I have to invent the sorriest fables to explain to him
that the Academicians are not holding any meetings; as, for instance,
that they are all old men, and that they are taking a long holiday."

The countess sighed and said: "I do what I can, but that terrible
doubt pursues me often. You see, he did know that the Panama affair
had resulted in ruin. It is since he was called before that examining
magistrate, M. Prinet, that he has been as you have seen him. He must
suspect something. How much, we shall never know."

Then she added: "He is constantly asking after Charles. He knows that
he is in trouble, but we hope that he does not suspect what the
trouble is. Before he was taken as he is, Charles had, to his
knowledge, become involved in that Société des Comptes Courants
bankruptcy, which ruined him; and perhaps his father thinks that his
son's troubles are in connection with that affair." Then the
stepmother broke out into impassioned praise of the stepson: "The
noblest heart! He will suffer all, rather than let the slightest harm
come to his father. He is a hero, a gentleman, a hero, a hero! When he
was here he told us what he had undergone, and said that he was
willing to undergo ten times as much, so that his father be left

"It is strangers who send us expressions of their sympathy. Those whom
De Lesseps has enriched have forgotten him. And yet I am unjust. I
have had letters from people who risked their positions, their daily
bread, in writing to me as they did. But not a single political man
has written a word to express condolence with the great patriot or
with his family. They dare not. None of my letters are safe. Many of
my friends have received my letters open. Many letters addressed to me
have gone astray. It is dangerous to-day to be the friend of the man
who gave a fortune to his country.

"He sits there all day," she continued, "and reads his 'Souvenirs of
Forty Years,' the 'Souvenirs' which he has dedicated to his children.
And at times he is quite his old self again, but drowsiness is always
coming upon him. _Mon Dieu!_ that he may be spared to us a little

Helene just then passed through the room. "There is a paper in papa's
room," she whispered, "which I must take away. There is the word
Panama upon it."

Our conversation was with bated breath, and the ill-fated word was
scouted like an unclean thing.

And whilst we were talking, the sunny, curly-headed Paul ran into the
room and cried out: "Oh, do come and see papa! Bou-Bou has jumped onto
his shoulder and is picking his violets."

We moved towards the door, and this was the last that I saw, or may
ever see, of Ferdinand de Lesseps. Against the red background of the
twofold screen he sat sunken, asleep, in his arm-chair, with the two
volumes that tell the story of his heroism in his lap, and on his
shoulders perched a grinning Barbary ape, pulling at and munching the
violets which Helene had picked for him, and which hid in his
buttonhole his jeopardized rosette of the Legion of Honor. Around him
stood his children, and it was sad to see, and sadder still to think,
that, his family excepted, what holds this great heart and splendid
gentleman in dearest affection is not the millionaire grown rich on
his achievements, but a witless, speechless thing, that perhaps has
feeling what a great and generous heart is here.





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