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Title: Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 64, No. 397, November 1848
Author: Various
Language: English
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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 "Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 64, No. 397, November 1848" ***

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generously made available by The Internet Library of Early
Journals.)



                       BLACKWOOD'S

                   EDINBURGH MAGAZINE.

  NO. CCCXCVII.       NOVEMBER, 1848.        VOL. LXIV.



CONTENTS.


A GLIMPSE AT GERMANY AND ITS PARLIAMENT,                515

SATIRES AND CARICATURES OF THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY,      543

A PARCEL FROM PARIS,                                    557

LIFE IN THE "FAR WEST." PART THE LAST,                  573

THE LATE GEORGE FREDERICK RUXTON,                       591

THE NAVAL WAR OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION,                 595

DANUBE AND THE EUXINE,                                  608

THE MEMOIRS OF LORD CASTLEREAGH,                        610

A CALL,                                                 625

WHAT IS SPAIN ABOUT?                                    627

CONSERVATIVE UNION,                                     632


                       EDINBURGH:

      WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS, 45, GEORGE STREET;
             AND 37, PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON.

_To whom all Communications (post paid) must be addressed._

     SOLD BY ALL THE BOOKSELLERS IN THE UNITED KINGDOM.

     PRINTED BY WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS, EDINBURGH.



BLACKWOOD'S

EDINBURGH MAGAZINE.

NO. CCCXCVII.         NOVEMBER, 1848.          VOL. LXIV.



A GLIMPSE AT GERMANY AND ITS PARLIAMENT.


We are not old enough to have been politically detained at Verdun.
Our impressions of Napoleon are soured by no recollections of
personal tyranny; and though a near relative wasted the better
portion of his life in the dreary enjoyments of that conventional
fortress, we do not carry the spirit of clanship so far as to
entertain on that account a revengeful hatred towards the memory of
the Corsican. At the same time, it must be confessed that, towards
the latter part of this past August, the idea of Verdun more than
once recurred unpleasantly to our mind. It became clear to us that,
for this year at least, there was little probability of our realising
certain visions of Highland sport which had been called up by a
perusal of the exciting work of the Stuarts. Her Majesty was coming
down to Balmoral, and, in consequence, the red deer of Aberdeenshire
were safe, at least from a private rifle. The grouse, with a degree
of obstinacy truly irritating, had again failed, and we were little
disposed to levy war against the few and feeble remaining broods
of the cheepers. The Duke of Sutherland, with a just economy, had
shut up his rivers, and given the salmon a jubilee; so that there
was no hope of throwing a fly on the surface of the Shin or the
Laxford. On the other hand, there seemed to be plenty of sport, and
no want of shooting on the Continent. Licences were not required,
and restrictive seasons unknown. The odour of gunpowder was distinct
in Paris as early as the month of February; and ever since then
there had been occasional explosions and discharges all over the
face of Europe. True, a _garde mobile_, or a gentleman in a blouse,
especially when provided with a rusty detonator and bayonet, is an
awkward kind of sportsman to encounter. Barricades may be curious
structures to inspect; but it is not pleasant to be on either side of
them when the Red Republic is in question; and still more ungenial
to be placed exactly in the centre, as once occurred to a worthy
bailie of our acquaintance, who, having been sent to Paris in 1830,
on a special mission to fetch home some stray voters for an impending
election in the west, found, to his intense horror, that the
diligence in which he was located was built up as a popular defence;
that the bullets were whistling through the windows; and that even
his patron, St Rollox, seemed deaf to his intercessions for rescue.

But as we do not happen to hold stock in the French lines, and
therefore have not thought it necessary, as yet, to identify
ourselves with any of the parties who are presently contending
for the palm of mastery in France; as the crusade under the white
flag or the oriflamme in favour of the descendant of Saint Louis
has not yet been openly proclaimed or enthusiastically preached by
any bearded representative of Peter, the Miraculous Hermit; and
as, moreover, we had seen quite enough of France in her earliest
stages of paroxysm, and had no wish to behold the professors of the
vaudeville and palette engaged, in the present dearth of money, at
the novel occupation of cobbling shoes for the Sardinian soldiery
in the _ateliers nationaux_--we resolved to abstain from Paris in
the meantime, and rather to bend our steps towards Germany, then in
the full ferment of the Schleswig Holstein affair. Germany has been
an old haunt of ours from our boyhood. So far back as 1833, we had
the pleasure of witnessing a tight little skrimmage between the
Heidelberg students and the soldiery in the square of Frankfort; and
since that time we have watched with great interest the progress
of the arts, literature, and sciences, and the development of the
interior resources of the country. Right sorry were we, though not
altogether surprised, to learn that quiet Germany had lighted her
revolutionary pipe from the French insurrectionary fires; that
Mannheim, Heidelberg, and Hanau, those notorious nests of democracy,
had succeeded in perverting the minds of many throughout the circle
of the Rhenish provinces; and that studentism, once comparatively
harmless, had become utterly rampant throughout the land. For
although we never could, even in our earlier years, take any deep
pleasure in cultivating the society of the Burschenschaft, but,
on the contrary, rather regarded them as a race to be eschewed by
all who had a wholesome reverence for soap and a horror for the
Kantean philosophy, we were not unpleased at the national spirit
which they exhibited long ago; and more than once, in the vaults of
the _Himmels-leiter_ and _Jammerthal_, at Nuremberg, we have joined
cordially in the chorus of defiance to French aggression--

    'Sie sollen ihn nicht haben
      Den Deutschen freien Rhein!'

That Germany, under her peculiar constitution, should retain her
own, and that the boundaries should be strictly preserved, seemed
to us a highly proper, laudable, and patriotic sentiment; but, when
the Teutonic youth went further, and demanded an immediate return to
the mediæval system, and the glorious times of the Empire, we must
confess that their aspirations seemed to us to savour slightly of
insanity. We are, constitutionally, an admirer of the ancient times.
We do not think that people are happier, or wiser, or better, or
that they fulfil one whit more conscientiously their duties to God
and man, when cooped up and collected within the dingy alleys of a
commercial town, instead of treading the free soil which gave their
fathers birth. We are not especially affected to the over-increase of
factories, neither would we award an ovation to any one for breeding
up human beings expressly for the production of calico. But not, on
that account, would we willingly recur to the days of the forays and
the raids. We don't want to see the clans reintegrated, the philabeg
on every hip, and the hills covered with caterans, each ettling at
his skian-dhu. We have no desire to cross the Border of moonlight
night at the head of a score of jackmen, and, _more majorum_,
regale our ears with the lowing of the Northumbrian kine. We do not
consider such a feat necessary, simply because a remote ancestor
was afflicted with too earnest a desire for the improvement of his
patrimonial breed of cattle, and, having been unluckily found on
the wrong side of the Tweed, died, like a poet as he was, with some
neck-verses in his mouth, at a place denominated Hairibee. But our
German friends--more especially the students--have long been haunted
by some such ideas. _The Robbers_ of Schiller, and the _Goetz von
Berlichingen_ of Goëthe, have had a poisonous effect upon the fancy
or fantasy of the young. They have long been dreaming of doublets,
boots, and spurs, and it needed but a little thing to set them
utterly crazy. Their modern school of painting has for years been
even more mediæval than their literature; and what the poets began,
Schnorr and Cornelius have been rapidly bringing to a head. No one
who is intimate with the German character, will lightly undervalue
the effect of such a popular sentiment, when an actual opportunity
for outbreak is afforded in revolutionary times.

This feeling, absurd as it is, has been greatly favoured and fostered
by the infinitesimal division of Germany at the Treaty of Vienna,
and the maintenance as sovereignties of small states, which ought
long ago to have been remorselessly absorbed. By that settlement
Germany was declared to consist of no less than thirty-eight separate
and independent states, with no other tie of union than an annual
diet at Frankfort. Previous to the Revolutionary wars, there were
actually about three hundred sovereign rulers in Germany, each of
whom might have worn a crown, if he could only have found money
enough to buy one. This was a miserable farce and a caricature, and
it could not possibly last. The King of Man was a powerful potentate
in comparison with some of these autocrats; and if there had been a
royal house of Benbecula, the crown-prince of that insular Eden would
have been a proper match for the daughter of their sublime Highnesses
of Fugger-Kirchberg-Weisenborn, or Salm-Reifferscheid-Krautheim. The
French invasion blew away a crowd of these little sovereigns, like
mites from the surface of a cheese; but, very unfortunately, a tithe
of them were permitted to clamber back. Some of the larger German
states thought to fortify their position, and to obtain an ascendency
in the Diet, by maintaining several of the minor principalities
intact, and, in return, commanding their votes. Hence the retention
as sovereign princedoms of the three Anhalts, the two Schwartzbergs,
the two Hohenzollerns, the two houses of Reuss, the two Lippes,
Waldeck, Lichtenstein, and Homburg--territories, the outlines of
which you can hardly discover on an ordinary map of Europe, or even
on one of Germany. These are the instances which we think the most
objectionable and absurd, but the case of several others is not much
better. For example, there are four sovereign Saxe Duchies, besides
the kingdom of Saxony proper.

Thirty-eight, then, were preserved by the Congress of Vienna,
whereas, for the sake of stability, there should not have been more
than five. The remaining German states might have been absorbed, as
were many more, into Austria, Prussia, Saxony, Bavaria, and Hanover;
and, in this way, power would have been consolidated, a balance
preserved, and entire centralisation avoided. Instead of which, for
more than thirty years there has been a constellation of princes
and of petty courts throughout Germany, to its infinite detriment
and discredit. Magnificent Lichtenstein, with a territory of two
square miles, and about five thousand subjects, takes rank with
imperial Austria; and Henry, styling himself the twenty-second of
Reuss-Lobenstein and Ebersdorf, has as good a patrimonial sceptre as
Frederick-William of Prussia. Out of all this, what could arise save
endless wrangling and confusion?

The smaller states, especially those which border on the Rhine,
gradually became the acknowledged hotbeds of sedition. It was there
that the expatriated journalists and crack-brained patriotic poets
sought refuge, when their articles, pamphlets, and ditties, became
too strong for the stomach of the legitimate censor; and there they
have been for years hatching treason upon unaddled eggs. The old
influence exercised by France over the Rhenish Confederation has
never utterly decayed. Each fresh insurrectionary leap in Paris
has been followed by a convulsive movement in the western Germanic
princedoms; and no pains have been spared for the dissemination of
the republican propaganda. Even this evil might have been checked,
had Austria and Prussia acted in unison and good faith towards each
other; but, unfortunately for Europe, the policy of the latter power
has always been of the most tortuous and deceptive kind. Prussia,
raised to and maintained in the first class of European states,
solely on the strength of her military armament, and jealous of
the superior strength of her southern rival, has for many years
been engaged in intrigues with the minor states, for the purpose of
securing to herself an independent position, in the event of the
dissolution of the great German confederation. Unable to obtain
her object through a legitimate supremacy in the Diet, Prussia has
gradually withdrawn from the proceedings of the Federal Congress,
and apparently surrendered to Austria the command of that feeble
body. But by means of the Zollverein, or Commercial League--a scheme
which she maturely prepared and perseveringly pursued--Prussia had
contrived to secure the adhesion of fully three-fourths of the
Germanic states--thus expecting to constitute herself a protectorate
in reality, if not in name, and to set the authority of the Diet at
absolute defiance.

In England, where very little is known of the secret springs of
continental diplomacy, the Zollverein was regarded as a mere
commercial measure. It was, in reality, nothing more than a
preparation for the coming crisis, in the course of which, as
Prussia fondly hoped, Germany might be rent asunder, and the larger
portion of the spoil accrue naturally to her share. As if to make
the distinction between herself and Austria more apparent, Prussia
began to affect liberalism in a remarkable degree. Her talk was of
constitutions on the broadest basis; and her king was, in words
at least, a Quixote in the cause of freedom. But words, however
skilfully uttered, cannot, in the total absence of action, deceive
a people long. The king of Prussia's promises were not a whit more
fruitful than the prophecies of the free-traders, who told us of an
immediate millennium. The censorship of the press was maintained
as stringently as ever, and no concession was made to the popular
demands, naturally stimulated to excess by this show of liberality on
the part of the sovereign.

At the commencement of the present year, the affairs of Germany
were thus singularly complicated. Austria stood alone on the basis
of her old position, as an absolute and paternal monarchy, refusing
all innovation. Prussia appeared to favour liberal institutions,
but delayed to grant them--professed her willingness to take the
lead in a new era of Germany, but gave no guarantee for her faith.
In consequence, she was not trusted by the revolutionist party in
the south and west, who, having altogether got the better of their
princes, were determined, on the very first opportunity, to try their
hands at the task of regenerating the whole of Germany. Central
authority there was none, for the Diet, deserted and disregarded by
Prussia, had sunk into utter insignificance, and hardly knew what
function it was still entitled to perform.

At the tocsin of the French revolution, the south-west of Germany
arose. The princes bordering on the Rhine had long been aware
that they were quite powerless in the event of any general
insurrectionary movement, and, accordingly, they were prepared,
without any hesitation, to grant constitutions by the score, whenever
their bearded subjects thought fit, in earnest, to demand them. A
constitution is a cheap thing, and, to a princely proprietor of
limited means, who needed no seven-league boots to traverse the
circle of his dominions, must be infinitely better than forfeiture.
Baden began the dance. The Grand-duke made no difficulty in granting
to his loving liegemen whatever they were pleased to require. The
last of the Electors--he of Hesse-Cassel--was equally accommodating;
and, in such circumstances, it would have been madness for the
King of Wurtemberg to refuse. In Bavaria, the government attempted
to make a stand; but it was of no use. The late king, one of the
most accomplished of dilettantes, worst of poets, and silliest of
created men, had latterly put the coping-stone to a life of folly,
by engaging, though a prospective saint of the Romish calendar, in a
most barefaced intrigue with the notorious Lola Montes. The indecency
and infatuation of this last _liaison_, far more openly conducted
than any of his former numerous amours, had given intense umbrage,
not only to the people, but to the nobility, whom he had insulted by
elevating the _ci-devant_ opera-dancer to their ranks. Other causes
of offence were not wanting; so that poor Ludwig, though the best
judge of pictures in Europe, was forced to give in, and surrender his
dignity to his son. Then rose Nassau and Frankfort, Saxony and Saxe
Weimar, and what other small states we wot not.

Constitutions became as plenty in the market as blackberries; indeed,
rather too much so, for at last there was a sort of glut. If the
Germans had merely desired freedom of the press, trial by jury,
burgher-guards, and the repeal of exceptional laws, the gift was
ready for them; but they wanted something more, which the separate
sovereigns could not give. In the midst of the haze of revolution,
the popular eye was fixed upon a dim phantom of German unity--upon
the eidolon of old Germania, once more compact and reunited. True,
the old lady had been laid in her grave long before any of the
present generation were born, not in the fulness of her strength,
but after a gradual decay of atrophy. This, however, was a sort of
political resurrection; for there she, or her image, stood, comely as
in her best days, and clothed in mediæval attire. The dreams of the
students seemed to be in the fair way of accomplishment, and a loud
shout of "_Germania soll leben!_" arose from the banks of the Rhine.

At Heidelberg, on the 5th of March, an assembly of the German
notables was held. This was a self-constituted congress of
fifty-one persons, and represented eight states, in rather singular
proportions; for while the duchy of Baden contributed no less than
twenty-one members, Wurtemberg nine, and Hesse-Cassel six, Austria
was represented by one individual, and Rhenish Prussia by four.
These gentlemen passed resolutions to the effect that Germany
should become one and united; that her safety lay in herself, and
not in alliance with Russia; and that the time had arrived for the
assemblage of a body of national representatives. In the list of the
parties so gathered together, we find the honoured names of Hecker
and of Struve: the star of Von Gagern of Darmstadt was not yet in the
ascendant. After having delegated to a committee of seven the task of
preparing the basis of a German parliament, this meeting separated,
to assemble again with others on the 30th of March at Frankfort, in
the character of a legislative body.

Although insurrectionary symptoms had been shown at Cologne and
Dusseldorf--both of them especially black-guard places--Prussia
remained tolerably quiet for a week after constitutions were
circulating like currency on the Rhine. But on the 13th the storm
burst both at Berlin and Vienna. Austria did little more than shrug
her shoulders and submit. Prince Metternich, the oldest statesman
of Europe, and the man most personally identified with the ancient
system, was the main object of popular obloquy; and the master
whom he had served so long and so well was physically incapable of
defending him. The Archduke John espoused the popular side, and
the result was the self-exile of the Prince. The King of Prussia
remained true to his original character of charlatan. First of all,
his troops fired upon the mob; then came a temporising period and a
public funeral, spinning out time, until the result of the Vienna
insurrection was known; and at last Frederick-William appeared
to astonished Europe in the character of the great regenerator
of Germany, and as candidate for the throne of the Empire. The
impudence of the address which he issued upon the memorable 18th of
March, absolutely transcends belief; and that document, doubtless,
will remain to posterity, to be marked as one of the most singular
instances on record of royal confidence in public sottishness and
credulity. Here is a short bit of it; and we are sure the reader will
agree with us in our estimate of the character and sincerity of the
august author:--

     "We believe it right to declare before all--not only before
     Prussia, but before Germany, if such be the will of God, and
     before the whole united nation, what are the propositions which we
     have resolved to make to our German confederates. Above all, we
     demand that Germany be transformed from a confederation of states
     into a federal state. We admit that this implies a recognisation
     of the federal constitution, which cannot be carried into effect
     save by the union of the princes with the people. In consequence,
     a temporary federal representation from all the states of Germany
     must be formed, and immediately convoked. We admit that such
     a federal representation renders constitutional institutions
     necessary in the German States, in order that the members of that
     representation may sit side by side, with equal rights. We demand
     a general military system of defence for Germany, copied, in its
     essential parts, from that under which our Prussian armies have
     won unfading laurels, in the war of liberation. We demand that the
     German army shall be united under one single federal banner, and
     we hope to see a federal general-in-chief at its head. We demand a
     German federal flag, and we hope that, in a short time, a German
     fleet will cause the German name to be respected on neighbouring
     and on distant seas. We demand a German federal tribunal, to
     settle all political differences between the princes and their
     estates, as also between the different German governments. We
     demand a common law of settlement for all natives of Germany,
     and perfect liberty for them to settle in any German country. We
     demand that, for the future, there shall be no barriers raised
     against commerce and industry in Germany. We demand a general
     Zollverein, in which the same measures and weights, the same
     coinage, the same commercial rights, shall cement still more
     closely the material union of the country. We propose the liberty
     of the press, with the same guarantees against abuses for every
     part of Germany. Such are our propositions and wishes, the
     realisation of which we shall use our utmost efforts to obtain."

It certainly is to be regretted, for his own sake, that the King of
Prussia, if he really had the above projects thoroughly at heart,
did not announce them a little sooner. Had he done so, there could
have been no mistake about the matter; and he can hardly plead want
of opportunity. But to delay the annunciation of the above sweeping
scheme until the French revolution had given an impulse to the
turbulent population of the Rhenish states--until constitutions had
been every where granted--until the foundations of a German National
Assembly had been laid--until Austria was paralysed by domestic
insurrection--and finally, until Berlin itself had been in temporary
possession of the mob--does most certainly expose his Majesty of
Prussia to divers grave insinuations affecting his probity and his
honour. Sir Robert Peel, in like manner, told us that, for several
years, he had been secretly preparing matters for the repeal of the
corn-laws. We believe in the admitted treachery; but what shall
we say to the occasion which caused it to be developed? Simply
this, that in both cases there was an utter want of principle. The
King of Prussia, like Peel, thought that he perceived an admirable
opportunity of obtaining power and popularity, by not only yielding
to, but anticipating, the democratic roar; and, in consequence, he
has shared the fate which, even on this earth, is awarded to detected
hypocrites. The south-west of Germany looked coldly on this new ally.
The democratic leaders, however wild in their principles, were, after
their own fashion, sincere; and they had no idea of intrusting the
modelment of their new government to such exceeding slippery hands.
Accordingly, the Frankfort Assembly met, discussed, and quarrelled,
fixed upon a basis of universal suffrage, and summoned together, of
their own authority, though not without recognition of the princes,
the first German Parliament, of which more anon. In the mean time,
valorous Hecker and sturdy Struve, choice republicans both, had
hoisted the red banner in Baden, but were somewhat ignominiously
routed. The Parliament finally met, annihilated the Diet, and
resolved that the provisional central power of Germany should
be vested in a Reichsverweser, or Administrator of the Empire,
irresponsible himself, but with a responsible ministry; and--no doubt
to the infinite disgust of Frederick-William of Prussia, who was
not even named as a candidate--the choice of the Assembly fell upon
Archduke John of Austria, who, as we have already seen, had embraced
the popular side, and forced on, at Vienna, the deposition of the
venerable Metternich.

The Reichsverweser was not summoned to occupy a bed of roses.
Nominally, he was constituted the most powerful man in the whole
German confederation, the sovereign of an emperor, and the controller
of divers kings, princes, grand-dukes, electors, and landgraves.
In reality he was nobody. Universal suffrage and empire are things
which can hardly exist together; and it very soon appeared that
the motive power, whatever that might be, was exclusively in the
hands of the six hundred and eighty-four individuals who occupied
the church of Saint Paul. To chronicle their doings is not the
object of the present paper. It may be sufficient to remark that the
first stumbling-block in the way of German unity was to discover
the limits of what properly might be denominated Germany. On this
point there were many strange and conflicting opinions. Some were
for incorporating every possession which had fallen under the rule
of any German house,--in which case, Hungary, Lombardy, and part of
Poland, would have fallen under the protection of Frankfort. Some,
with more classical tastes, were desirous of extending their claim
to every country which at any time had been under Teutonic rule,--in
which case, Palestine and Sicily, if not Italy, would fall to be
annexed, and the shadow of the Empire be thrown as far as the Euxine,
on the strength of the ancient tradition that Ovid, in his exile at
Pontus, had studied the German language and composed German poetry.
The map of Europe afforded no solution of the difficulty. There had
been cessions, and clippings, and parings innumerable during the
last century and a half. Limburg had been annexed to Holland, and
Schleswig was clearly under the dominion of Denmark. In this position
the Germans committed the enormous folly of adopting the cause of the
Schleswig malcontents, and of plunging, before their own house was
set in order, into the dangers of a European war.

Having proceeded thus far in the exposition of German affairs, we
now cede the narrative to our excellent friend Dunshunner, who,
with characteristic kindness, accompanied us in this expedition.
Notwithstanding some few omissions, such as that of entirely
forgetting to muniment himself with letters of credit, we found him a
very agreeable companion. He was perfectly acquainted with Frankfort
and elsewhere, and, we suspect, better known than trusted throughout
the valley of the Rhine. On looking over his notes, we observe that,
with his usual devotedness, he has entirely dispensed with any notice
of our existence--a circumstance which we are the more ready to
pardon, as it relieves us from the necessity of pledging ourselves
to the minute accuracy of his statements. But whatever ingredient of
fiction there may be in his dialogue, this at least is certain, that
as a general picture it is true.

No man--says Dunshunner--who has this year visited Germany, could
believe that it is the same country which he knew in the days of its
tranquillity. In former times, the tourist, if his opinions happened
to be extra liberal, or slightly savouring of republicanism, would
have done well to abstain from proclaiming them over loudly in the
streets. I have myself seen a dirty Frenchman, of the propaganda
school, ceremoniously conducted from the hotel to the guard-house
of Mayence, by a couple of armed police, in consequence of a tirade
against royalty; and I recollect that, for some time afterwards,
there was considerable speculation as to the place of his ultimate
destination. Now, the danger lies the other way. The more radicalism
you can muster up, the better you will be appreciated in such cities
as Cologne and Frankfort,--the former of which places, if I had my
will, should be deliberately devoted without mercy to the infernal
gods. Always a nest of rascality and filth, Cologne now presents an
appearance which is absolutely revolting. Its streets are swarming
with scores of miscreants in blouses, belching out their unholy
hymns of revolution in your face, and execrating aristocracy with a
gusto that would be refreshing to the soul of Cuffey. The manners
of the people even in the hotels, which I was glad to find nearly
deserted, are rude and ruffianly in the extreme. The very waiters
seem impressed with the idea that civility is a failing utterly
inconsistent with the dignity of regenerated patriots; and they take
such pains to show it that I could well understand the apprehensions
of a timorous countryman, who confessed to me in the steam-boat that
he had been so alarmed at the threatening aspect of a democratic
_kellner_ as to take the precaution of locking himself up in his
bed-room, lest haply, in the course of the night, his weazand should
be made an offering to Nemesis, and his watch and purse transferred
upon the communist principle.

The traveller who, this year, passed for the first time from Belgium
into Germany, must have been deeply impressed with the marked
difference between the manners of the two people. In Belgium all is
tranquillity, order, and apparent ease. Neither in the towns nor in
the country is there discernible the slightest trace of disaffection
or turbulence. Citizens and peasantry are pursuing their usual
avocations in peace, and the contentment which reigns throughout
bears testimony to the blessings of a firm and prudent government.
But the instant the boundary is passed, you are immediately and
painfully reminded that you have left a land of order, and entered
into one of anarchy. Instead of the quiet civil Belgian traders
and _negociants_, the carriages on the railway--especially the
third class, which I invariably preferred for the sake of enjoying
the full flavour of democratic society--are crowded with every
imaginable species of pongo pertaining to the liberal creed. Your
ears are filled with a gush of guttural jargon, in which the words
_einigkeit_, _despotismus_, and _unabhängigkeit_ prodigiously
preponderate; and ever and anon some canorous votary of freedom
shouts out a stave of a song, constructed upon any thing but
constitutional principles. The first feature which strikes you in the
male portion of the population is, the preposterous length of their
beards. Formerly the Germans used to shave; at least they kept their
chins reasonably clean, and if they cultivated any extra capillary
growth, reserved their care for their mustache. Now every one of them
has a beard like a rabbi, and to use razors is considered the sure
and infallible sign of a loyalist and an aristocrat. At Juliers I had
the pleasure of encountering the first specimen of Young Germany that
crossed my path, and a precious object he was. I had been sitting for
some time _vis-a-vis_ with a little punchy fellow from Vienna, with a
beard as red as that which the old masters have assigned to Barabbas;
and as he spoke little, but smoked a great deal, I was inclined to
think him rather a companionable sort of individual than otherwise.
But, at the station, in stepped a youth apparelled precisely after
the fashion of an assassin in a melodrama. His broad beaver hat, with
a conical crown, was looped up at one side, garnished with an immense
cockade of red, black, and gold, and surmounted by a couple of dingy
ostrich feathers. I lament, for the sake of our home manufactures,
to state that he exhibited no symptom of shirt-collar; nor, so far
as I could observe, had he invested any portion of his capital in
the purchase of interior linen. Over his bare neck there descended
a pointed Maximilian beard. A green blouse, curiously puckered and
slashed on the sleeves, was secured round his person by a glazed
black belt and buckle, and his legs were cased in a pair of rusty
Hessians. In short, he needed but a dagger and a brace of pistols
to render him theatrically complete; and had Fitzball been in the
carriage, the heart of that amiable dramatist would assuredly have
yearned within him at the sight of this living personification of
his own most romantic conceptions. I had forgotten to state that the
patriot had slung by his side a wallet, of the sort which is familiar
to the students of Retzsch, in which he carried his tobacco.

To my amazement, nobody, not even the gens-d'armes on the platform,
appeared to be the least surprised at this formidable apparition,
who commenced filling his pipe with the calmness of an ordinary
Christian. For my own part, I could not take my eyes off him, but
sate speechlessly staring at this splendid specimen of the Empire.
Nor was it long before he thought fit to favour us with his peculiar
sentiments. Some sort of masonic sign was interchanged between
the new comer and Barabbas, and the former instantly burst forth
into a lecture upon the political prospects of his country. It has
been my fortune to hear various harangues, from the hustings and
elsewhere--and I have even solaced my soul with the outpourings of
civic eloquence--but never was it my fortune to hear such a discourse
upon constitutions as that pronounced by this interesting stranger.
The total demolishment of thrones, the levelling of all ranks, the
abolition of all religions, and the partition of property, were the
themes in which he revelled; and, to my considerable surprise and
infinite disgust, the punchy Viennese assented to one and all of
his propositions. Some remark which I was rash enough to hazard,
impugning the purity of the doctrines professed by the respectable
Louis Blanc, drew upon me the ire of both; and I was courteously
informed, in almost as many words, that freedom, as understood in
Britain, was utterly effete and worn out,--that Germany was fifty
years in advance of the wretched island,--and that, when the German
fleet was fairly launched upon the ocean, satisfaction would be taken
for divers insults which it did not seem convenient to specify.

It is, of course, utterly out of the question to reason with
maniacs, else I should have been very glad to know why these new
republicans entertained such a decided hatred of England. One can
perfectly well understand the existence of a similar feeling among
the French,--indeed, abuse of our nation is the surest topic to win
applause from a Parisian audience, and it has been, and will be,
employed as the last resource of detected patriots and impostors.
But why Young Germany should hate us, as it clearly does, is to me a
profound enigma. During the Revolutionary wars, we allowed ourselves
to be plundered and subsidised in support of the freedom which the
Germans could not maintain. Prussia, after taking our money, most
infamously went over to France, and laid her clutches upon Hanover.
We forgave the aggression and the treachery, and still continued to
lavish our gold and our blood in their defence, performing, up to
the close of the struggle, the part of a faithful and by far too
generous ally. Notwithstanding all this, which is clearly written in
history, the fact is certain, that every one of these revolutionists
devoutly longs for the downfall of Britain, and would gladly lend
a helping hand to assist. Cobden was fêted on the Continent, not
because he was a commercial reformer, but because he was known to be
a determined enemy to the British aristocracy, and a virulent and
successful demagogue. It was for that reason, and for that alone,
that he was greeted on his progress by the rising rascaldom of
Europe: he was to them the mere type of a coming democracy, and they
cared not a copper for his calico.

It is comfortable, however, to know that Young Germany has other
enemies, whom she regards with even more jaundiced eyes. There is
not one republican rogue on the Rhine but feels a pang of terror
at the mere mention of the name of Russia. They are perfectly well
aware that Great Britain has no intention of meddling with them,
and that they may cut and carve at their own constitutions without
the slightest risk of exciting an active interference. But they
are not so sure of the permanent neutrality of Nicholas; and an
unwholesome suspicion is constantly present to their minds, that, in
the progress of events, Russia may combine with the constitutional
party in Austria and Bavaria, and restore order by sweeping from
the face of the earth the whole revolutionary gang. And it is not
at all impossible that such may be the result, when the government
of Prussia awakes to a sense of its duty, and their king becomes
thoroughly ashamed of the unworthy part he has acted. At present,
he has the merit of having stirred up a conflagration which he is
not permitted to direct, and the misfortune of finding that, besides
his neighbour's house, his own is threatened with the flames. He has
thrown himself into the arms of the ultra-democratic party, without
the slightest symptom of recognition on their part. His name is in
every mouth a by-word. He is cursed by the constitutionalists for his
treachery and fickleness, and laughed at by the movement party, whose
aim is a pure republic.

I took the earliest possible opportunity of treating both of the
admirers of freedom to beer at a station, and, in consequence, rose
somewhat in their good graces. He in the garb of the middle ages
had evidently been refreshing himself already in the course of the
forenoon, and proceeded to vary the monotony of the journey by
chanting a hymn of Freiligrath's, which, it struck me, might have
been improved by the omission of considerable bloodthirstiness. I was
not sorry when we arrived at Cologne, and had to submit our baggage
for inspection to the custom-house officers--an operation which they
performed with much civility; nevertheless I thought it incumbent
upon me, before parting, to point out this remnant of feudal tyranny
to my companions, and to request that, when Germany had become a
republic, and kings and kaisers were no more, the grievance might be
redressed. Though neither of them were burdened with goods, they were
kind enough to assure me that my recommendation should be attended
to--a promise which they sealed with oaths; whereupon we shook hands,
and parted, I sincerely trust, for ever.

Not having the slightest wish to renew my acquaintance with the
skulls of Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar, or with the interesting
relics of Saint Ursula and her plurality of virgins, I set off early
next morning on the customary passage up the Rhine. Judging from
the diminished numbers and appearance of the passengers, the hand
of revolution has already weighed heavily upon the industry of this
district. There were none of the English travelling carriages on
board--none of the merry groups that used to congregate under the
awning, and spread the echoes of their laughter and merriment over
the bosom of Father Rhine. Even the artists, that ubiquitous class,
were unrepresented. The quarter-deck was sparsely tenanted by a few
Germans wearing the national cockade, who were evidently on their
way to Frankfort; one or two Frenchmen, who, having nothing to do
in Paris, were killing time by a short summer ramble, and a single
enterprising Cockney and his bride. Every one seemed dull and
dispirited, and utterly without that store of enthusiasm which used
to be expended as a sort of necessary tribute to the glorious scenery
of the river. I made acquaintance with a young Parisian banker, a
gay good-humoured fellow of Herculean proportions, who had fought
on the side of order in the bloody affair of June. He was a decided
Orleanist in his politics, and had no faith whatever in the ultimate
stability of the Republic.

"I turned out," he said, "with the national guard, and a hard time
we had of it at the barricades. The _canaille_ fought like devils.
But what would you have?--it was neck or nothing with us. Property is
worth little in France, thanks to Lamartine and the rest; but there
is a worse thing than the loss of property--_le pillage et le viol_!
So I fought for the Republic, bad as it is, being the only barrier
between us and absolute ruin. For myself, I am heartily tired of the
whole concern. I have come away with fifty louis in my purse, to
amuse myself for a month; and then I shall return to Paris, in the
full expectation of being shot before the month of February."

His disgust at the present aspect of Germany was excessive.

"The fools! the imbeciles! What possible good can they expect to
receive from their revolution? My countrymen were foolish enough--but
we laboured under the curse of centralisation in Paris, and, heaven
knows! we are paying the penalty. The departments of France did
not want a change; but here the infection appears to be universal.
Look at that fat fool with the absurd cockade!--I take him to be a
substantial merchant in one of their towns--he may not have felt the
pressure as yet, but before six months are over his stock will be
lying useless on his hands, and his affairs utterly bankrupt. That
is the price he must pay for national unity, and the privilege of
wearing in his hat a badge about the size of a soup-plate!"

Presently we were favoured with a specimen of the warlike
preparations of the assembly at Frankfort. That body had, a few days
before, refused their consent to the armistice which the regent had
been empowered to conclude with the king of Denmark; and steamer
after steamer dashed past us, conveying Prussian, Nassau, and
Darmstadt troops from Mayence to the scene of action. With the new
gaudy colours of the Empire trailing at the stern, these vessels came
down the stream, the troops cheering as they went by, and apparently
in high spirits.

"Very well, gentlemen!" thought I, "go on. The attack on little
Denmark by a great bully of a power may seem a very creditable thing
at present, but we shall see how it will end. Take care you don't
run your heads against a certain individual to the northward, who is
popularly supposed to subsist principally upon spermaceti, and who
would ask no better amusement than that of extracting a little of
your extra democracy with the knout. There would be some grimacing in
Cologne at the sight of a pulk of Cossacks!"

Coblentz, that pretty little town which reposed so quietly under the
huge shadow of Ehrenbreitstein, was crowded with troops, waiting
for the opportunity of transport. I had scarcely stepped upon the
quay when I found myself enveloped in the embrace of a gentleman in
military accoutrements, who exclaimed with Teutonic fervour--

"_Du lieber himmel! Er ist's! August Reignold von Dunshunner, wie
geht's?_"

I looked up, and presently recognised an old acquaintance in the
person of one Ernest Herrmann, formerly _fahntrager_ or ensign in
a regiment of Wurtemberg infantry, and now a captain in the same
distinguished service. Years before, I had seen a good deal of him at
Stuttgardt, and still remembered with pleasure his accomplishments in
the ball-room and the skittle-ground.

"Herrmann, my dear fellow!" said I, "is it possible that I meet
you here? Have you changed service, or what brings you here from
Stuttgardt?"

"Not I," replied Herrmann. "Still true to the old colours; but you
see we have added another since you were last here. The fact is, that
our regiment is on its way for a brush with the Danes, and we expect
to take up our winter-quarters at Copenhagen."

"Indeed!"

"Will you not join us? I have no doubt it will be the rarest fun--and
I am sure the colonel would not have the least objection to your
being of our party."

"Thank you!" said I drily, "I am afraid I should be rather in the
way. And how are our old friends Krauss and Bartenstein, and the
rest?"

"All well and all here! Come along with me, we are just going to
dinner, and you positively must spend an hour with us. Not that way!"
said my friend, as I was making for one of the larger hotels, at the
door of which two waiters were waving napkins, as if to allure the
unwary passenger--"not that way! We have a quiet _gast-haus_ of our
own, and I think I can promise you a tolerable spread."

I yielded to the suggestion, and accompanied Herrmann down a back
street until we reached a tavern, which, certainly, I would not
have been inclined to select as my own peculiar domicile. Several
Wurtemberg soldiers were smoking their pipes in the passage, and
the aroma which issued from the _Stuben_ was far more pungent than
pleasant. We ascended a wooden stair leading to an upper apartment,
in which a number of officers were already seated at table.

"Whom do you think I have here?" cried Herrmann. "Krauss, Offenbach,
Bartenstein--have you forgot our old friend the Freyherr von
Dunshunner?"

In an instant I was pounced upon by Krauss, who, after a hug of
German fraternity, passed me to his nearest comrade; and in this way
I made the round of the table, until I emerged from the arms of an
aged major, as odorous as Cadwallader when mounted on his goat after
a liberal luncheon upon leeks.

I used to like the German officers. They were a frank, good-humoured,
rough-and-ready sort of fellows, decently educated, as times go,
and easily and innocently amused. I would rather, however, not mess
with them, for they are extremely national and economical in their
diet; and I never throve much upon the bread soup, sauer kraut, and
pork, which constitute the staple of their entertainments. But I was
gratified at meeting once more with old companions, though under
circumstances singularly changed. The senior officers, I could see,
were not very sanguine as to the results of their expedition, and it
was only among the younger portion that any enthusiasm was exhibited.
So we talked a great deal, and consumed a considerable quantity of
indifferent Moselle, until a messenger announced that time was up,
and the steamer ready to depart. I accompanied my friends to the
quay, and bade them farewell, with a strong conviction that, from the
present state of European affairs, it was highly improbable that we
should ever meet again.

Two days afterwards I arrived at Frankfort, every hour upon the road
having afforded farther evidence of the entire disorganisation which
is prevalent throughout Germany. In Mayence, that strong garrison
town, any thing but a friendly feeling subsists between the military
and the populace. The latter, long accustomed to strict rule, have
become turbulent and insolent, never omitting any opportunity of
displaying their ill-will, especially to the Austrians, who have as
yet received such demonstrations with the phlegm peculiar to their
nation. But it is very evident that the Austrian soldiery are sick
of this order of things, and that, whenever an opportunity of action
may occur, they will not be slow in taking a summary vengeance on the
blouses. In the mean time discipline is relaxed, and men seem hardly
to know who is their legitimate master. France never yet had so good
an opportunity of achieving that old object of her ambition--the
boundary of the Rhine; and, in the event of a European war, it is
almost certain that the attempt will be made.

Frankfort, to outward appearance, is, or at least was when I entered
it, as brisk and bustling as ever. The tradesmen, with the exception
of the publishers, to whom the Revolution has been a godsend, may
not be driving so profitable a business, but the influx of strangers
since the Assembly met has been remarkable. Here Young Germany
flourishes in full unwashed and uncontrolled luxuriance. Every
kind of costume which idiocy can devise is to be met with in the
streets, and the conical parliamentary hat confronts you at every
turn. The bustle of politics has superseded that of commerce, and
the conversation relates far more to democracy than to dollars. The
hotels are still crowded, it being the fashion for members of the
same political views to dine together at the _tables-d'hôte_--so
that the traveller who is not aware of this arrangement may, by
going to one house, find himself a participator in a red republican
banquet; whereas, had he merely crossed the street, he might have
fed with moderate conservatives. My old quarters used to be at the
_Weidenbusch_; but by this time I had become so disgusted with
everything savouring of liberalism that I directed the coachman to
drive to the _Russischer Hof_, where I trusted to find rest and peace
under the protecting shadow of Saint Nicholas.

I was leisurely washing down my evening cutlet with the contents of
a flask of _Liebfrauenmilch_, and wondering whether the pleasant
_cafés_ outside the city gates were still in existence, when a huge
colossus of a man entered the _salle-à-manger_, seated himself
immediately opposite me at table, and demanded a double portion of
_kalbs-braten_. I could not refrain from taking a deliberate view of
the stranger. He appeared to be upwards of sixty, was curiously clad
in duffle, possessed a double, nay, a triple chin, and his small pig
eyes peered out from under their pent-house above a mass of pendulous
and quivering cheek. His stomach, enormous in its development, seemed
to extend from his neck to his knees; his short stubby fingers were
girded with divers seal-rings of solid bullion, and he spoke in the
husky accents of an ogre after too plentiful a repast in the nursery.

As I gazed upon this marked victim for apoplexy, his features
gradually seemed to become familiar to my eyes. I was certain that
I had heard that short asthmatic wheeze, and seen that pendulous
lip before. Strange suspicions crossed my mind, but it was not
until I saw him produce from his pocket a pipe well known to me in
former days, that I felt assured of being in the presence of my old
preceptor the Herr Professor Klingemann.

The worthy man had, in the mean time, honoured me with a reciprocal
survey; but either his eyes had failed him, or his memory was not
so retentive as mine, for he betrayed no symptoms of recognising
his quondam pupil. Much affected, I rose up, extended my hand, and
inquired if he did not know me.

He stared at me in bewilderment until I mentioned my name, and then
suddenly, with a chuckle of delight, he extended his arms, as if to
embrace me across the table--a ceremony which I wisely avoided, as I
have observed that glasses broken in a hotel are invariably charged
at double the original cost. I made the circuit, however, and, after
undergoing the usual hug, and a world of preliminary inquiries, sat
down by the side of my former guide, philosopher, and friend.

Klingemann had always been suspected to be somewhat of a democrat.
He had smoked his way through all the intricate labyrinth of German
philosophy, in search of what he called the universal system of
reconcilement of theory, until his brain became as muddy as the
Compensation Pond which supplies Edinburgh with water. Of course,
as is always the case under such circumstances, he acquired a
corresponding reputation for profundity, and was, by many of his
students, esteemed the leading metaphysician of Europe. If a man
cannot achieve any other kind of character, he has always this in
reserve: if he will make a point of talking unintelligibly, and of
employing words which nobody else understands, he will, in time,
be raised to the level of Kant and Hegel, without giving himself
any extraordinary trouble in the search for fugitive ideas. But the
politics of Klingemann--at least in my university days--never used
to emerge until he had moistened his clay with a certain modicum of
liquid. Then, to be sure, he would descant with almost superhuman
energy upon constitutional and despotic systems. He used to
demonstrate how perfect liberty was attainable by an immediate return
to the noble principles of the Lacedæmonians, whose social code and
black broth he esteemed as the perfection of human sagacity. He also
held in deep respect the patriarchal form of government, and was of
opinion that the soil of the earth belonged to nobody, but ought to
be cultivated in common.

Solomon was right when he averred that there is nothing new under
the sun. The principles of communism, as at present advocated on
the Continent by Messrs Louis Blanc and Prudhon, and in England by
the unfortunate Cuffey, were long ago expounded and practised by
Luckie Buchan and Mr Robert Owen. Let us be just in our movement, and
pay honour where honour is due. Let those who embrace the creed do
justice to the manes of its founder, and style themselves Buchanites,
in veneration of that estimable woman whose attempted apotheosis has
been so well described by Mr Joseph Train. Professor Klingemann,
with all his erudition, had never heard of Luckie Buchan; but, for
all that, he was completely of her mind. Had his views been openly
promulgated, there can be little doubt that his labours in the
university would have been cut short in a somewhat despotic manner;
but he had sense enough to avoid observation, and never lectured upon
politics except in private, to a select circle of his acolytes.

Such was Klingemann when I knew him first. We had corresponded for
a short while after I left the university, but I soon got tired of
the professor's hazy lucubrations, and undutifully omitted to reply,
which in time produced the desired effect. For years I heard nothing
of him, save on one occasion, when he did me the honour to send me
a copy of his _magnum opus_, entitled "An Essay upon the Ideality,
Perceptiveness, and Ratiocination of Notions," closely printed upon
two thousand mortal pages of dingy paper, with a request that I would
be kind enough to translate and publish it in the English language.
As I bore no spite at the moment against any particular bookseller,
and was by no means covetous of working out my own individual ruin,
I did not think it necessary to comply with this philanthropic
suggestion; and the original of the work is perfectly at the service
of any gentleman who may have the fancy for attaining a European
reputation. Klingemann, I dare say, was disappointed, but he bore no
manner of malice.

"My dear professor," said I, "you are the last man whom I should have
expected to meet in Frankfort. I thought you were far away at the
university, occupied as usual with those sublime works which have
made your name immortal."

"Ah, Augustus, my dear child!" replied the professor with a deep
sigh, "things have strangely altered since you were here last. I
used to think that I was labouring in the sphere of usefulness, by
concentrating into one focus of ever-brilliant illumination the
scattered rays of human idiosyncrasy and idoneousness; but I find now
that, for many years, I have been sending the plummet vainly down the
deep unfathomable chasm of psychology and speculation! _Wass henker!_
what keeps that _schelm_ with my _kalbs-braten_? No, my son; I have
discovered, though late, that I am made for action, and henceforth I
shall devote my energies to the amelioration of the human race."

"As how, my honoured sir? I am somewhat at a loss to understand you."

"By taking an active interest in the affairs of the outer and living
man, as contradistinguished from the internal reflective being. Know,
August Reignold von Dunshunner, that I am a member of the German
parliament!"

"You, my dear professor! Is it possible? And yet why should I doubt?"
continued I, bowing reverently to the illustrious man; "at this
particular crisis, Europe imperatively needs the services of her
master spirits."

"She does," replied the professor, "and Germany requires them in
particular. You see our system was old and antiquated. We were
pressed upon from without, and the dark subtile spirit of the
Metternichian policy spread like a poisonous miasmatical exhalation
over the whole surface of the land. It was time to alter these
things--full time that the most gigantically-gifted and heroical race
of the world should escape from the insidious fetters of a low and
degrading despotism!"

"Pardon me, my dear professor, but so long a time has elapsed since
I left the university, that I can hardly follow the meaning of some
of these very lengthy words. But am I right in addressing you by your
academic title? Do you still retain possession of your chair?"

"Of course," replied Klingemann, with a twinkle of his eye. "I
should like to see any of the princes venture just now to infringe
the rights of the universities! Our noble German youth have been the
first to assert the grand principle of unity, and future ages will
record with triumph their deeds at the barricades of Vienna and of
Berlin."

"And your salary?"

"I draw it still, with compensation for the loss of students."

"That must be a pleasant arrangement!"

"It is. I have left my lectures with a famulus to be read next
winter, in case there should be any class. But, before then, I expect
that Germany will require the active service of its youth."

"Indeed!" said I; "are you then apprehensive of a general European
war?"

The learned man made no reply, being intently occupied with his
victuals. There was silence in the room for about a quarter of an
hour, until the professor, having finished his meal, and mopped up
the last drop of gravy with a morsel of bread which he incontinently
devoured, removed the napkin from his bosom, filled out a tumbler of
Moselle, and thus resumed:--

"Hear me, young man! I always loved you; for, in the midst of a
certain frivolity of disposition, I discerned the traces of a strong
practical enterprising genius. Nay--I am serious. Often, in the
course of the speculations which have been forced upon me, during the
late headlong current of events, have I thought of you in connexion
with the coming destinies of your country. For--do not mistake my
meaning--the avalanche which is now sliding down the mountain, with
terrific velocity, will not stay itself until it reaches the valley.
The rights of the people are not the sole object of the present
movement. The awakening of the great heart of Germany is the mere
prelude to events that will upset monarchies, overthrow thrones, and
shatter society to its deepest foundations, until, by an unerring
law of nature, which provides that light shall emerge from darkness,
order will uprear itself from the shattered elemental chaos, and the
work of social reorganisation be commenced anew. You see my purpose?"

"Why, to say the truth, profoundest of professors, I have not the
slightest glimmering of your drift!"

"You are dull, Herr von Dunshunner!" replied Klingemann, knitting
his brows--"much duller than I could have expected from one who has
attended my lectures. In Britain, you have not yet attained that
point of exalted _rationalismus_, from which alone the true surface
of society can be surveyed. You think, I presume, that your own
present system of government is perfect?"

"If you mean government by Queen, Lords, and Commons, I am clearly
of opinion that it is. But if you mean to ask my impressions of the
present Cabinet, I rather think I should give you a very different
answer."

"You mistake me altogether," replied the professor. "What are you,
in Britain but a heterogeneous mixture of all possible races,
without unity of blood, and sometimes even unity of language? Are
not Celt and Saxon, Dane and Norman, jumbled together in the great
social sphere? And can you expect, out of these warring elements,
ever to produce harmony? No, August Reignold! One great error--the
total disregard of unity of race--has hitherto been the enormous
stumbling-block in the way of human perfection, and it is for the
cure of that error that Germany has arisen from her sleep!"

"And what the deuce--excuse my profanity--do you intend to do?"

"To reunite and reconstitute the nations upon the foundation of unity
of race," replied the professor.

"It would be rather a difficult thing to accomplish in my case,
professor." I replied. "Without raising a multiplepoinding; as we say
in Scotland, I could hardly ascertain to which race I really belong.
My father was a Saxon, my mother a Celt--I have a cross of the Norman
ancestry, and a decided dash of the Dane. It would defy anatomy to
rank me!"

"In cases of admixture," said the professor, lighting his
pipe--"which, be it remarked, are the exceptions, and not the
rule--we are willing to admit the minor test of language. Now,
observe. Western Europe--for we need not complicate ourselves with
the Sclavonic question--may be considered as occupied by four
different races. It is, I believe, quite possible to reduce them to
three, but, in order to avoid controversy, I am willing to take the
higher number. In this way we should have, instead of many separate
states, merely to undertake the arrangement or federalisation of
four distinct races--the Latin, the Teutonic, the Celtic, and
Scandinavian. Each tree should be allowed to grow separately, but all
its branches should be interwoven together, and the result will be a
harmony of system which the world has never yet attained."

"You hold France to be Celtic, I presume, professor?"

"Decidedly. The southern portion has an infusion of Latin, and the
northern of Scandinavian blood; but the preponderance lies with the
Celt."

"And who do you propose should join with France?"

"Three-fourths of Ireland, the Highlands of Scotland, Wales, and the
Basque Provinces."

"So far well.--And England?"

"England is confessedly Saxon; and, as such, the greater portion of
her territory must be annexed to Germany."

"While Northumberland and the Orkney islands are handed over to
Scandinavia! I'll tell you what, professor--you'll excuse my freedom;
but, although I have heard a good deal of nonsense in the course of
my life, this idea of yours is the most preposterous that was ever
started."

"We are acting upon it, however," replied Klingemann; "for it is upon
that principle we are claiming Schleswig from Denmark, and Limburg
from the crown of Holland. But for that principle we should be
clearly wrong, since it is admitted that, in all past time, the Eyder
has been the boundary of Germany. All territorial limits, however,
must yield to unity of race."

"May I ask if there are many members of the German parliament who
favour the same theory?"

"A good many--at least of the left section."

"They must be an enlightened set of legislators! Take my word for
it, professor, you will have enough to do in settling the affairs of
Germany Proper, without meddling with any of your neighbours."

"It must be owned," said the professor, "that we still require a good
deal of internal arrangement. We have our fleet to build."

"A fleet!--what can you possibly want with a fleet? And if you had
one, where are your harbours?"

"That is a point for after consideration," replied Klingemann. "I
am not much acquainted with maritime matters, because I never have
seen the sea; but we consider a fleet as quite essential, and are
determined to build one. Then there is the settlement of religious
differences. That, I own, gives me some anxiety."

"Why should it, in a country where three-fourths of the population,
thanks to metaphysics, are rationalists?"

"I do not know. There is a proposal to construct a pantheon, somewhat
on the principle of the Valhalla, in which men of all sects may
worship; but I am strongly impressed with the propriety of a unity of
creed as well as a unity of race."

"And this creed you would make compulsive?"

"To be sure. We expect obedience to the laws--that is, to our laws,
when we shall have made them; and I cannot see why a law of worship
should be less imperative than a law which binds mankind to the
observance of social institutions."

Shade of Doctor Martin Luther!--this in thy native land!

"Well, professor," said I, "you have given me enough to think on for
one night at least. Perhaps to-morrow you will be kind enough to take
me to the parliament, and point out some of the distinguished men who
are about to regenerate the world."

"Willingly, my dear boy," said the professor; "it is your parliament
as well as mine, for you are clearly of the Saxon race."

"Which," interrupted I, "I intend to repudiate as soon as the
partition begins; for, whatever may be doing elsewhere, there are at
least no symptoms of barricades in the Highlands."

Although it exceeded the bounds of human credulity to suppose that a
majority, or even a considerable section of the German parliament,
entertained such preposterous ideas as those which I had just heard
from Klingemann, it was obvious that the supreme authority had
fallen into the hands of men utterly incapable of discharging the
duty of legislators to the country. A movement, commenced by the
universities, and eagerly seconded by the journalists, had resulted
in the abrupt recognition of universal suffrage as the basis of
popular representation. There had been no intermediate stage between
total absence of political privilege and the surrender of absolute
power, without check or discipline, to the many. What wonder, then,
if the revolution, so rashly accomplished, so weakly acquiesced in
by the majority of the princes of Germany, should already be giving
token of its disastrous fruit? What wonder if the representatives
of an excited and turbulent people should carry with them, to the
grave deliberations of the senate, the same wild and crude ideas
which were uppermost in the minds of their constituency? It needed
but a glance at the parliamentary list to discover that, among
the men assembled in the church of St Paul, there were hardly any
fitted, from previous experience, to undertake the delicate task of
reconstructing the constitutions of Germany. There were plenty of
professors--men who had dreamed away the best part of their lives in
abstract contemplation, but who never had mingled with the world, and
who formed their sole estimate of modern society from the books and
traditions of the past. The recluse scholar is proverbially a man
unfit to manage his own affairs, much less to direct the destinies
of nations; and all experience has shown that the popular estimate
has, in this instance, been strictly true. There were poets of name
and note, whose strains are familiar throughout Europe; but, alas!
it is in vain to expect that the power of Orpheus still accompanies
his art, and that the world can be governed by a song. There were
political writers of the Heine school, enthusiastic advocates of
systems which they could neither defend nor explain--worshippers of
Mirabeau and of the heroes of the French Revolution--and most of them
imbued with such religions and social tenets as were promulgated by
Thomas Paine. There were burghers and merchants from the far cities,
who, since the days of their studentism, had fattened on tobacco
and beer; gained small local reputations by resisting the petty
tyranny of some obnoxious burgo-master; and who now, in consequence
of the total bouleversement of society, find themselves suddenly
exalted to a position of which they do not understand the duties,
or comprehend the enormous responsibility. Political adventurers
there were of every description, but few members of that class which
truly represents the intelligence and property of the country.
In the preliminary assembly, the names of five or six mediatised
princes--particularly those of the house of Hohenlohe--and of several
of the higher nobility, were to be found. Few such names occur in
the present roll,--the only mediatised member is the prince of
Waldburg-Zeil-Trauchburg. This is ominous of the tendency of the
parliament, and of its pure democratic condition.

So much I had learned from a perusal of the debates, which are
now regularly published at Frankfort, and which hereafter may be
considered as valuable documents, illustrating the rise and progress
of revolution. But I was curious to see, with my own eyes, the aspect
of the German parliament, and not a little pleased to find that my
old friend, the professor, was punctual in keeping his appointment.

Saint Paul's church, a circular building of no great architectural
merit, has been appropriated as the theatre of council. Thither
every morning, a crowd of the enthusiastic Frankforters, and crazy
students in their mediæval garbs, repair to pack the galleries, and
bestow their applause upon the speeches of their favourite members.
It is needless to say that, the more democratic the harangue, the
more liberal is the tribute of cheering. The back benches on one side
of the main body of the hall are reserved for the ladies, who, in
Frankfort at least, are keen partisans of revolution. The volubility
with which these fair creatures discuss the affairs of state, and
questions of political economy which the science of Miss Martineau
could not unravel, is really quite astounding. Whenever you meet
a German woman now, you may prepare to hear a tirade upon popular
freedom: they are, as might be expected, even more bitter than the
men in their denunciation of artificial rank; nor do they seem to
be in the slightest degree aware of the fact, that of all hideous
objects on earth, the worst is a patriot in petticoats. I have heard
such venom and bloodthirstiness expressed by a pair of coral lips
that, upon the whole, I should rather have preferred soliciting a
salute from Medusa.

Above the president's chair, and painted in fresco upon the wall, is
a very dirty figure intended to represent Germania, clad in garments
which, at first sight, appeared to be covered with a multitude of
black beetles. On a more close inspection, however, you discover that
these are diminutive eagles; but I can hardly recommend the pattern.
The president, Von Gagern, a tall, dark, fanatic-looking man, is
seated immediately below, and confronts the most motley assemblage of
men that I ever had the fortune to behold.

Klingemann, having intimated to me that it was not his intention to
illuminate the mind of Germany that day by any elaborate discourse,
was kind enough to place himself beside me, and perform the part of
cicerone. My first impression, on surveying the sea of heads in the
assembly, was decidedly unfavourable; for I could hardly discern
amongst the ranks one single individual whose appearance bespoke him
to be a gentleman. The countenances of the members were generally
mean and vulgar, and in many cases absurdly bizarre. Near me sate an
old pantaloon, with a white beard flowing over a frogged surtout, his
head surmounted with a black velvet scull-cap, which gave him all
the appearance of a venerable baboon just escaped from the operation
of trepanning, and a staff of singular dimensions in his hand. This,
Klingemann told me, was Professor Jahn, formerly of Freiburg, and
surnamed the father of gymnastics.

This superannuated acrobat seemed to be the centre of a group of
literary notables, for my friend pointed out in succession, and with
great pride, the burley forms of Dahlman and other thoroughgoing
professors. In fact, one large section of the hall was nothing but a
Senatus Academicus.

"But where," said I, "are the poets? I am very curious to see the
collection of modern minstrels. I presume that young fellow with
the black beard, who is firing away in the tribune, and bawling
himself hoarse, must be one of them. He can, at all events, claim the
possession of a full share of godlike insanity."

"He is not a poet," replied the professor; "that is Simon of Treves,
a very intelligent young man, though a little headstrong. I wish he
would be somewhat milder in his manner."

"Nay, he seems to be suiting the action to the word, according to the
established rules of rhetoric. So far as I can understand him, he
is just suggesting that divers political opponents, whom he esteems
reactionary, should be summarily ejected from the window!"

"Ah, good Simon!--but we have all been young once," said the
professor. "After all, he is a stanch adherent of unity."

"Yes--I daresay he would like to have every thing his own way, in
which case a certain ingenious machine for facilitating decapitation
would probably come into vogue. But the poets?"

"You see that old man over yonder, with the calm, benignant, nay,
seraphic expression of countenance, which betokens that his soul
is at this moment far withdrawn from its earthly tabernacle, and
wandering amidst those paradisaical regions where unity and light
prevail."

"Do you allude to that respectable gentleman, rather up in years, who
seems to me to have swallowed verjuice after his coffee this morning,
or to be labouring under a severe attack of toothache?"

"Irreverend young man! Know that is Ludwig Uhland."

"You don't mean to say that that crossgrained surly old fellow is the
author of the famous ballads!" exclaimed I. "Why, there is a snarl
on his visage that might qualify him to sit for a fancy portrait of
Churchill in extreme old age!"

"He is the last of a great race. Look yonder, at that other venerable
figure----"

"The gentleman who is twiddling his stick across his arm, as though
he were practising the bars of a fandango? Who may he be?"

"Arndt, the great composer. Have you men like him in your British
parliament?"

"Why, I must confess we have not yet thought of ransacking the
orchestra for statesmen. Any more?"

"Yes. You see that tall grizzled man over the way. That is Anastasius
Grün."

"Graf von Auersperg? Well, he is a gentleman at least; though, as to
poetical pretension, I have always considered him very much on a par
with Dicky Milnes. But where are your statesmen, professor? Where are
the men who have made politics the study of their lives, who have
mastered the theories of government and the science of economics, and
who have all the different treaties of Europe at the ends of their
fingers?"

"As we are commencing a new era," replied Klingemann, "we need
none of those. Treaties, ideologically considered, are merely
the exponents of the position of past generations, and bear no
reference to the future, the tendency of which is lost in the mists
of eternity. Such men as you describe we had under the Metternich
system, but we have discarded them all with their master."

"Then I must say that, idiotically considered, you have done a very
foolish thing. Where at least are your financiers?"

"My dear friend, I must for once admit that you have stumbled on a
weak point. We are very much in want of a financier indeed. Would you
believe it? the sum of five florins a-day, which is the amount of
recompense allowed to each member of the Assembly, has been allowed
to fall into arrear!"

"What! do each of these fellows get five florins a-day, in return for
cobbling up the Empire? Then it is very easy to see that, unless the
exchequer fails altogether, the parliament will never be prorogued."

"Certainly not until it has completed the task of adjusting a German
constitution," observed the professor.

"Which is just saying the same thing in different words. But, pray,
what is exciting this storm of wrath in the bosom of the respectable
Mr Simon?"

"He is merely denouncing the sovereigns and the aristocracy. It is
a favourite topic. But look there! that is a great man--ah, a very
great man indeed!"

Without challenging the claim of the individual indicated to
greatness, I am committing no libel when I designate him as the very
ugliest man in Europe. The broad arch of his face was fringed with
a red bush of furzy hair. His eyes were inflamed and pinky, like
those of a ferret labouring under opthalmia, and his nose, mouth,
and tusks, bore a palpable resemblance to the muzzle of the bulldog.
Altogether, it is impossible to conceive a more thoroughly forbidding
figure. This was Robert Blum, the well-known publisher of Leipzig,
who has put himself prominently forward from the very commencement of
the movement; and who, possessing a certain power of language which
may pass with the multitude for eloquence, and professing opinions
of extreme democratic tendency, has gained a popularity and power in
Frankfort, which is not regarded without uneasiness by the members
of the more moderate party. As this worthy was a bookseller, and
Klingemann still in possession of piles of unpublished manuscript,
I could understand and forgive the enthusiasm and veneration of the
latter.

Simon having concluded his inflammatory harangue, the tribune was
next occupied by a person of a different stamp. He was, I think,
without any exception, the finest-looking man in the Assembly--in
the prime of manhood, tall, handsome, and elegantly dressed, and
bearing, moreover, that unmistakeable air which belongs to the
polished gentleman alone. His manner of speaking was hasty, and
not such as might be approved of by the practised debater, but
extremely fluent and energetic; and it was evident that Simon and his
confederates writhed under the castigation which, half-seriously,
half-sarcastically, the bold orator unsparingly bestowed. Judging
from the occasional hisses, the speaker seemed no favourite either
with the members of the extreme left or with the galleries; but
probably he was used to such manifestations, for he went through
his work undauntedly. I asked his name. It was Felix, Prince of
Lichnowsky.

Poor Lichnowsky! a few weeks after I saw him in the Assembly, he
was barbarously and brutally murdered by savages at the gate of
Frankfort--the flesh cut off his arms with scythes--his body put up
as a target for their balls--and every execrable device of ingenuity
employed to prolong his suffering. O ye who wink at revolutions
abroad, and who would stimulate the populace to excess--ye who,
in days past, have written or been privy to letters from the Home
Office, conniving at undeniable treason--think of this scene,
and repent of your miserable folly! In a civilised city--among a
Christian and educated population--that deed of hideous atrocity
was perpetrated at noon-day: the young life of one of the most
accomplished and chivalrous cavaliers of Europe was torn from him
piecemeal, in a manner which humanity shudders to record, and for
no other reason than because he had stood forth as the advocate of
constitutional order! Liberal historians, in their commentaries upon
the first French Revolution, spare no pains to argue us into the
conviction that such tragedies as that of the Princess de Lamballe
could not be enacted save amongst a people degraded and brutalised
by long centuries of misgovernment, oppression, and superstition.
They have lied in saying so. A pack of famished wolves is not so
merciless as a human mob, when drunk with the revolutionary puddle;
and were the strong arm of the law once paralysed in Britain, we
should inevitably become the spectators, if not the victims, of the
same butcheries which have disgraced almost every country in Europe
now clamouring for independence and unity. The sacerdotal robes of
the Archbishop of Paris--the gray hairs of Major von Auerswaldt--the
station and public virtue of the Counts of Lamburg, Zichy, and
Latour--could not save these unhappy men from a fate far worse than
simple assassination: and this century and year have likewise been
reserved for the unexampled abomination of Christian men adopting
cannibalism, and feeding upon human flesh, as was the case not a
month ago at Messina! Well might Madame Roland exclaim, "O Liberty!
what things are done in thy name!" Poor Lichnowsky! Better had he
fallen on the fields of Spain, in the combat for honour and loyalty,
with the red steel in his hand, and the flush of victory on his brow,
than have perished so miserably by the hands of the cowardly and
rascal rout of the _free_ city of Frankfort!

"That's Zitz of Mayence," said the professor, as a heavy-looking
demagogue stumbled clumsily up to the tribune.

"Oh! that's Zitz, is it?" replied I. "Well, professor, I think I
have had quite enough of the Assembly for one morning, and as I feel
a certain craving for a cigar, I think I shall leave you for the
present."

"Won't you dine to-day at the Swan?" said Klingemann, "most of my
friends of the left frequent the _table-d'hote_ there, and I should
like to introduce you to Zitz."

"Thank you!" said I, "I shall be punctual, and pray keep a place for
me;" and so for the present we parted.

"The dunderheads!" thought I, as I emerged into the street and lit
an undeniable havannah, "here is a nation which, for thirty years
past, has been eating its _sauer-kraut_ and sausages in peace, paying
almost no taxes, and growing its own wine and tobacco, about to be
plunged into irretrievable misery and ruin, by a set of selfish
hounds who look to nothing beyond their stipend of five florins
a-day! Heaven help the idiots! what would they be at? They have got
all manner of constitutions, liberty of the press--though there is
not a man in Germany who could write a decent leading article--and a
great deal more freedom than is good for them already. And now the
world is to be turned upside down, because a parcel of trash, not
a whit more respectable than Cuffey and his confederates, and very
nearly as stupid, have taken the notion of unity into their heads,
and are resolved to build up, with rotten bricks, the ricketty
structure of an empire. Nicholas, my dear friend, there is work
chalked out for you, and ready. If these scum presume to meddle with
their neighbours, they must be crushed like a hive of hornets; and I
do not know any foot so heavy and elephantine as your own!"

Pondering these things deeply, I strolled on from shop to shop,
gleaning everywhere as I went statistics touching the manner in
which our free-trade innovations have affected the industry of Great
Britain. For a year and a half, the boot and shoe trade has been
remarkably thriving; the London market being the most profitable in
the world, and nothing but British gold exported in return. As to
cotton manufactures, Belgium and Switzerland have the monopoly of
Southern Germany. The trade in Bohemian glass is rapidly superseding
at home the labour of the silversmith. A complete service, so
beautiful that it might be laid out on the table of a prince, costs
about thirty pounds; and the names of the British magnates, which
the dealer pointed to with ineffable triumph as purchasers, were
so numerous as to convince me that the deteriorating influence of
free trade was rapidly rising upwards. The same may be said of the
cutlery, which is now sent to undersell the product of the British
artisan in his own peculiar market. When we couple those facts, which
may be learned in every Continental town, with the state of our
falling revenue, and the grievous direct burden which is imposed upon
us in the shape of property and income tax, it is difficult for any
Briton to understand upon what grounds the financial reputation of
Sir Robert Peel is based, or to comprehend the wisdom of adhering to
a system which sacrifices every thing in favour of the foreigner, and
brings us in return no earthly recompense or gain.

I duly kept my engagement at the Swan, and was introduced by the
Professor to Zitz, Gervinus, and some more of the radical party. The
dinners at the Swan are unexceptionable; indeed, out of Paris, it is
impossible to discover better.

"What do you think of our German parliament?" asked a deputy of the
name of Neukirch, next whom I was seated. "It must be an interesting
sight for an Englishman to behold the aspirations of our rising
freedom."

"Oh, charming!" I replied: "and such splendid oratory--we have
nothing like it in the House of Commons."

"Do you really think so?" said Neukirch, looking absurdly gratified.

"I do indeed. The speech which I had the privilege of hearing this
morning from the gentleman opposite--" here I bowed to Simon of
Treves, who was picking the backbone of a pike--"was equal to the
most elaborate efforts of our greatest orator, Mr Chisholm Anstey.
It is not often that one has the fortune to listen to such talent
combined with patriotism!"

"You speak like a man of sense," said the flattered Simon. "I believe
that I have given those infernal princes their gruel. Lichnowsky had
better hold his peace, for the time is coming when a sharp reckoning
must be held between the aristocrats and the people."

"_Potz tausend!_" cried Zitz, "do they think to lord it over us
longer with their stars and ribbons? I hold myself to be as good a
man as any grand-duke of them all, and a great deal better than some
I could name who would give a trifle to be out of Germany."

"And how does the cause of democracy progress in England?" asked
Neukirch. "We are somewhat surprised to find that, after all the
preparation, there has been no revolution in London."

"As to that," said I, "you must hardly judge us too rashly. Two
distinguished patriots, called Ernest Jones and Fussell, were
desirous of raising barricades; but, somehow or other, the plan was
communicated to Government, the troops refused to fraternise, and the
attempt was postponed for the present."

"I see!" cried Zitz, "Russian influence has been at work in England
too. Nicholas has been sowing his gold, and the fruit is continued
tyranny."

"The fact is," said I, "though I would not wish it to be repeated,
that a good many of us are of opinion that we have no tyranny at
all, but rather more freedom than is absolutely necessary for our
happiness."

"No tyranny!" shouted Zitz; "is there not a chamber of peers?"

"Too much freedom!" roared Simon of Treves; "have you not an
Established Church?"

"Is not your sovereign a niece of the odious despot of Hanover?"
asked Neukirch.

"Is there not a heavy tax on tobacco?" inquired my friend and
preceptor Klingemann.

"Gentlemen all," said I, "these things must perforce be admitted.
We have a chamber of peers, and are thankful for it, because it
curbs democracy in the Commons. We have an Established Church,
and we honour it, because it has taught the people to fear their
Creator and to reverence their queen. Our sovereign is a niece of
the King of Hanover, and she has no reason whatever to be ashamed
of the connexion. And as to the article of tobacco, I may remark to
my learned friend the professor, that revenue must necessarily be
raised, and that, moreover, I have not smoked a single decent cigar
since I set foot in Germany."

"These are reactionary doctrines!" growled Zitz; "I fear you are no
true friend of the people."

"A firmer one never sat under the sign of Geordie Buchanan," said
I; "but I suspect your estimate of the people is somewhat different
from mine. Pray, Herr Neukirch, will you pardon the curiosity of a
stranger, if I ask one or two questions upon points which I do not
thoroughly comprehend? I observe, from the tenor of the proclamations
issued by Herr von Soiron, that you contemplate the erection of one
free, united, and indissoluble Germany."

"That is precisely our object."

"Then, am I right in holding that the Reichsverweser concentrates in
his own person the whole power and puissance of the different states?"

"Just so. He is president of Germany."

"So that with him and his council rest the whole responsibility of
disposing of the troops of the confederation, of making treaties, of
proclaiming peace and war, of regulating coinage and customs, and, in
fact, of exerting every royal prerogative?"

"Always with consent of the German parliament," said Zitz. "You
may believe we are not such fools as to substitute one tyrant for
thirty-eight."

"Then, gentlemen, it appears to me that your whole scheme, upon which
I am not qualified to express an opinion, resolves itself into one
of extensive and entire mediatisation. If the Emperor of Austria and
the King of Prussia have no power to declare peace or war--if their
armies are to obey the orders of the central power at Frankfort--it
will follow, as a matter of course, that their kingly privileges are
at an end. The interchange of ambassadors with foreign states will be
a ceremony so clearly futile that it must at once be abandoned, and
the monarchs will become merely the first of a titular nobility."

"That is the inevitable and glorious consequence!" cried my new
acquaintance, Neukirch. "You see the whole subject in its proper
light. First, we clip the wings of the princes till they can do
no more than hop about their own home-yards; then we control the
proceedings of the Reichsverweser by a parliament elected on the
principles of universal suffrage; and finally, we can eject the
puppet if necessary, and resolve ourselves into a pure democracy."

"One thing, then," said I, "is only wanting for this desirable
consummation, and that is, the consent of the princes. I admit that
you may have little trouble with Baden, Wurtemberg, and the like, but
what say Austria, Prussia, and Bavaria to this wholesale abdication
of their thrones?"

"We don't affect to deny that there may be a crisis approaching.
Austria has her hands full for the present with Italy and Hungary,
and has given no definite reply. But the clubs are strong and active
at Vienna, and on the very first opportunity you will see a general
rising. 'Anarchy first--order afterwards,' is our motto. Then, as to
Prussia, we do not want to push on matters too rapidly there. The
king has been playing into our hands; and, to tell you the truth, we
depend upon him alone for the continuance of our five florins a-day.
So that, in the mean time, you may be sure we shall be moderate in
that quarter. Bavaria may do as she pleases. If the others yield,
that power must necessarily succumb."

"Then I want to understand a little about the justice of your cause.
You have claimed Schleswig-Holstein as part of Germany, and you have
sent German troops, for the purpose of recovering it as your right?"

"Quite true."

"And at the same time Germany, or you as its representatives,
have acknowledged the right of all foreign nations to their own
independence?"

"We have."

"Then, will you have the kindness to explain to me how it is that
your philanthropic parliament, holding such principles, has not
thought proper to insist that every Austrian soldier, belonging to
the confederation, should be immediately withdrawn from Lombardy and
Hungary? How is it that General Wrangel, in the north, has ceased to
be a Prussian, and become a German soldier, whilst Marshal Radetsky,
in the south, is fighting without remonstrance at the head of troops
which you claim as your own, and against that independence of a
foreign nation, which you have thought proper expressly to recognise?
If Germany claims Schleswig on the ground of unity of race and
language, how can she, at the same time, countenance a subordinate
German power in infringing the very principle which she has so
determinedly proclaimed?"

Neither on this occasion, nor on any other, could I obtain a
satisfactory reply to the above question. In fact, from the very
beginning, the conduct of the men who have put themselves at the head
of the present movement, has been checkered by contradictions of
the most glaring and obvious kind. On the fifth of May, the present
vice-president, Von Soiron, put forth an address to the inhabitants
of Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia, calling upon them to co-operate and
join with the German confederacy, and to send representatives to the
union. Two of these states are comprised in the Austrian, and one in
the Prussian dominions; _but none of them are German_. If nationality
is to be recognised as the ruling principle--and the scheme of German
confederation and empire contemplated nothing else--these countries
would fall to be excluded, since, by language and race, they form
part of a totally different branch of the European family. But before
the ink on their proclamation of strict unity and independence was
dry,--that proclamation containing the following remarkable words,
"The Germans shall not be induced, on any consideration, to abridge
or deprive other nations of that freedom and independence which they
claim for themselves as their own unalienable right,"--we find the
Germans calmly annexing Polish Posen to their league, proposing to
include Bohemia, Moravia, and Silesia in the limits of the empire,
and by their official congratulatory address to Radetsky, giving
national countenance to the war of subjugation in Lombardy. Even were
their case otherwise good, such acts as these form an irresistible
argument against their present claim for Schleswig; for upon no
principle whatever are they entitled to add, on one side, to the
possessions of the empire by foreign annexation, and on the other to
repudiate annexation, when in favour of a foreign power.

But it is useless, in their present state, to demand explanation
from the Germans. They are like men who, in attempting to cross
a ford, have been carried off their feet by the swollen waters,
and are now plunging in the pool, unable to reach the shore.
_Imperium in imperio_ is clearly unattainable. German unity, as at
present contemplated, with a common army, common taxes, and common
constitutions, under one central government, can only be achieved by
an entire prostration of the princes, and the abolition of the kingly
dignity. Austria, Prussia, Saxony, Bavaria, and all the states,
must be blotted from the map of Europe, their boundaries erased,
their conditions forgotten, and their names for ever proscribed. The
republican party know this well, and it is in this conviction that
they are still labouring on, taking advantage of the unhappy state of
Austria in relation to its foreign possessions, sympathising with the
Hungarian revolt, and exciting the clubs at Vienna; whilst, at the
same moment, they are availing themselves to the utmost of the weak
and foolish blunder committed by the king of Prussia, and appealing
to his own declaration in favour of German unity, whenever he shows
the slightest symptom of receding from the popular path. There is
hardly a shade of difference between the opinions entertained by
a large mass of the Frankfort parliament, and those professed by
Hecker and Struve, the leaders of the Baden insurrections. The aim
of both parties was the same; but the insurgents sought to attain
their end by a speedy and violent process, for which the others
were not prepared. They proposed to undermine the power of the
sovereigns by a continued course of agitation, to arm a burgher
guard throughout Germany, as a countercheck to the troops, and,
wherever it is possible, to seduce the latter from their allegiance.
In this latter scheme, as recent events have shown, they have been
unfortunately too successful; and the military system of Germany had
afforded them great facilities. The German regiments are not, as is
the case in Britain, transferred from town to town, and from province
to province, in a continual round of service. They are quartered
for years in the same place, make alliances with the town-folks,
and become imbued with all their local and prevalent prejudices.
They are, in fact, too much identified with the populace to be
thoroughly relied on in the case of any sudden emeute, and too much
associated with the landwehr or militia, to be ready to act against
them. Let those who have not reflected upon this serious element
of discord, consider what in all probability would be the state of
an Irish regiment, if quartered permanently among the peasantry of
Tipperary--exposed, not for a short time, but for years, to the
baneful influences of agitation and deliberate seduction, and never
having an opportunity of contemplating elsewhere the advantages of
order and obedience? The circumscribed dimensions of some of the
German states has increased this evil enormously; and the example
set by General Wrangel, when, in the case of the Swedish armistice,
he declared himself to be an Imperial and not a Prussian commander,
cannot but have had a powerful effect in sapping the loyalty of the
troops. If Wrangel took that step in consequence of secret orders
from his master, as is by no means improbable, he may be personally
absolved from blame, but only by shifting to the royal shoulders such
a load of obloquy and scorn as never monarch carried before. If, on
the contrary, Wrangel did this on his own authority, the Prussian
government has evinced lamentable weakness, in not having him tried
by a court-martial, and shot for audacious treason.

If the monarchies of Germany are to be preserved, it must be through
the resolution of the troops. A congress is at this moment obviously
impossible, nor can it be attempted until the Frankfort parliament
has ran its course--a consummation which some people think is not
only devoutly to be desired, but very near at hand. Things have now
gone so far, that it is difficult to see how any kind of order can
be restored, without the disastrous alternative of commotion and
civil war. There are again symptoms of republican gatherings in the
north, which Prussia cannot this time overlook, without sacrificing
the fragments of her honour. At Vienna, the insurrection has been
successful. The emperor has, a second time, quitted Schönbrunn, and
has openly announced that, when he next returns to his capital, it
will be at the head of an avenging army. There is nothing improbable
in this announcement. The Austrian army is less liable to the
impairing influence already noticed than that of any other German
state; and though there never was a time when its services were so
urgently required at so many menacing points as at the present, there
may yet be strength enough left to crush the insurgent capital. Of
course, in such an event, all men may be prepared to hear from the
liberals the same howl of horror which issued from their sympathising
throats, when the populace of Naples manfully and boldly espoused
the cause of their legitimate sovereign. Sicilian cannibalism can be
pardoned, but Neapolitan loyalty, never!

It is a vain dream to associate German unity with the existing
system of principalities. Whether Von Gagern is really in earnest,
in attempting to labour towards this end, or whether he is merely
keeping up the appearance of such a union, for the purpose of
paving the way to a more sweeping measure of democracy, may be the
subject of legitimate doubt. If the former be the case, he has
committed a grave error, in allowing the Diet to be annihilated.
Though difficult, it was by no means impossible to have adjusted the
separate constitutions of the German states upon a liberal basis,
and to have devolved upon the chambers the right of nominating the
members of the imperial diet. Such a system might have secured as
much unity of purpose as was requisite for general administration,
without resorting to the dangerous experiment of a parliament elected
by universal suffrage. But nothing of this sort was attempted. On the
contrary, the Diet fell without a struggle: its old functions had
ceased when Prussia deserted it for the carrying out an independent
policy of her own; and no one attempted to resuscitate it by the
infusion of novel blood.

Notwithstanding such charm as might be derived from the society
of Messrs Zitz, Simon, and Co., and the fund of information which
professor Klingemann was ever ready to pour into my ear, I soon
became tired of Frankfort, and betook myself to the watering-places.
This was a good year for calculating what proportion of the company
usually located during the summer months at Wiesbaden, Homburg, and
Baden, sought those places for the benefit of the Hygeian springs, in
contradistinction to those whose main attraction was the Casino. The
number of the former class, I should say, was comparatively small.
Although one cannot feel much sympathy for such nests of gambling,
maintained, to the discredit of the smaller German princes, for
the sake of the revenue obtained from the Israelitish proprietors
of the banks, it was yet painful to observe the dull appearance
of the towns. There was hardly any remnant of that gaiety and
sprightliness, which used to characterise these haunts of fashion
and dissipation--none of the equipages which were wont to roll along
the environs, with ducal coronets on their blazon. The bazaars were
deserted: the _tables-d'hôte_ miserably attended. If thirty people
assembled in one of the great saloons, which formerly used to be
occupied by two hundred, the countenance of the host relaxed, and
lie evidently caught at the circumstance, as a gleam of returning
prosperity. There were still one or two desperate gamblers to be seen
at the roulette and rouge-et-noir tables, staking their gold with
as much eagerness and stern determination as ever; but, in general,
there seemed to prevail such a serious scarcity of bullion, that
those who possessed any were chary of hazarding their florins. The
brass bands still played as of yore, but their music sounded dull and
melancholy. Few subscribed to raffles, and the balls were miserable
failures.

The state of the small capitals is still worse. Darmstadt, never
a lively town, is literally shut up. You may wander through the
streets of Carlsruhe, as in the solitudes of Balbec, wondering what
on earth can have become of the whole population, and not be able
to solve the problem, unless, indeed, you should happen to hear the
clattering of the hoofs of the Baden cavalry awakening the dormant
echoes of the street. Then, with a shrill whoop of "Hier kommt die
Badische cavallerie!" man, woman, and child,--chambermaid and waiter,
rush to the windows to admire the exciting spectacle of their native
heroes, mounted upon animals not very much larger than ponies, and,
the moment the procession has passed, relapse into the same state of
somnolency as before. The palaces do not seem to be occupied, and the
voice of the syrens on the boards of the theatres is mute.

Perfectly disgusted with the change, which was too conspicuous
everywhere, I bent my way towards Switzerland; and there, amidst the
mountains, snows, cascades and glaciers of the Oberland, strove to
banish from my mind all thoughts of revolution and its concomitant
ruin. But Switzerland has suffered, in its way, almost as much as
Germany. Although the central point of Europe to which the steps
of the tourists tend, it furnishes ample proof of the general
consternation and misery in its lonely roads and empty hotels. There
are no English travelling abroad this year. Sometimes you encounter
an American party who have crossed the Atlantic, curious to see how
the old countries are getting on in their novel craze for republican
institutions, but the staple of the travelling commodity consists of
Italian refugees from Lombardy. These men also seem to have adopted
a kind of mediæval garb, more graceful than that of the Germans, and
are, to outward appearance, no despicable specimens of humanity.
They vapour and bluster, largely about their exertions for Italian
independence, though I never could meet with one who had actually
struck a blow in its behalf. They were furious at Charles Albert,
whom they characterised as a "traditore sceleratissimo," and vaunted
that, but for him and his Piedmontese troops, they would long ago
have freed their country from the grasp of the Austrians. I was not
altogether able to comprehend by what process of ratiocination these
illustrious exiles arrived at this result. It would appear odd if
they could not accomplish, with the aid of allies, the very same task
for which they asserted their notorious unassisted competency. This
is a political riddle of such a nature, that I shall not attempt to
solve it.

It is, however, comfortable to remark, that Swiss industry, in
many of its branches, still continues undiminished. The squat and
unwholesome hunter, who for years has infested the Rosenthal,
still pursues his prey, in the shape of the unwary traveller, with
perpetual impudence and importunity. Out of his clutches you cannot
get, until you have purchased, at triple its artificial value, the
wooden effigy of a chamois, a horn whistle, or the image of an Alpine
cow; and even after you have made your escape, crossed the bridge,
and are in full retreat up the valley, you hear him clamouring
behind you with offers of a staff to sell. From every cottage-door
rush forth hordes of uncompromising children; nay, they surprise
you in the very wastes, far from any human dwelling, and their only
cry is "_Batzen!_" Approach a waterfall, and you are immediately
surrounded by a plump of those juvenile Cossacks, seizing hold of
your skirts, thrusting their hands upwards in your face, and denying
you one moment's leisure to survey the scene. Their yelp for pence is
heard above the sullen roaring of the cataract. In vain you take to
flight--they cleave to you like a swarm of midges. You leap brook,
scale bank, and scour across the meadow towards the road, but you
fare no better than the Baron of Cranstoun in his race with the
Goblin Page; and at last are compelled to ransom yourself by parting
with the whole of the change in your possession.

If I can judge from the present temper of the Swiss, they are not
likely to return a very complacent answer to the charge made against
them by the central power at Frankfort, of having harboured Struve
and his gang. The German troubles have kept back so many visitors
from their country, that the Swiss are not inclined to be particular
as to the political opinions of any one who may favour them with a
sojourn; and in the present state of matters it is rather difficult
to determine who are rebels or the reverse. Bitterly at this moment
is Switzerland execrating a revolution which has entailed upon her
consequences almost equivalent to the total failure of a harvest.

After spending a fortnight among the mountains, I retraced my steps
to Frankfort. There I discovered that, in the interim, some little
change had taken place in the aspect of political affairs. Prussia
had at length taken heart of grace, and had remonstrated against
the arbitrary refusal of the armistice with Denmark, which she had
been expressly empowered, by the authority of the Reichsverweser,
to conclude. This tardy recognition of the laws of honour had,
of course, given enormous umbrage to the Frankforters, who now
considered themselves as the supreme arbiters of peace or war in
Europe; the more so, because they were not called upon to pay a
single farthing of the necessary expenses. They appeared to think
that, _jure divino_, they were entitled to the gratuitous services of
the Prussian and Hanoverian armies; and, with that sublime disregard
of cost which we are all apt to feel when negotiating with our
neighbours' money, they were furious at any interruption of the war
unworthily commenced against their small but spirited antagonist.
Such, at least, was the feeling among the burghers, in which they
were powerfully encouraged by the co-operation of the women. It is a
singular fact that, in times of revolution, the fair sex is always
inclined to push matters to greater extremity than the other, for
what reason it is literally impossible to say. I had the pleasure of
spending an evening at a social reunion in Frankfort, and can aver
that the sentiments which emanated from the ladies would have done no
discredit to Demoiselle Theroigne de Mericourt in the midst of the
Reign of Terror.

But other motives than those of mere abstract democracy had some
influence with the members of the parliament. Many of them who,
in the first instance, had voted for the peremptory infraction of
the armistice, were fully aware that they could not afford as yet
to affront Prussia, or to give her an open pretext for resiling
from the movement party. Such a step would have been tantamount to
annihilation, and therefore they were disposed to succumb. Others,
I verily believe, thought seriously upon their five florins a-day.
Hitherto Prussia had been the only state which had granted a monetary
contingent, and to refuse compliance with her wishes would inevitably
involve a sacrifice of the goose that furnished the supply of
metallic eggs. Therefore, after a long and rather furious debate,
the assembly retracted their former decision, and consented to a
cessation of hostilities.

A parliament, chosen upon the basis of universal suffrage, is only
safe when its opinions coincide with those of the mob. In the
present instance they were directly counter to the sweet will of the
populace, and of course the decision was received with every symptom
of turbulence.

"Professor," said I to my learned friend, on the evening after this
memorable debate, "you have given one sensible vote to-day, and I
hope you will never repent of it. But, if you will take my advice,
you will do well to absent yourself from the parliament to-morrow.
There are certain symptoms going on in the streets which I do not
altogether like, for they put me forcibly in mind of what I saw in
Paris this last spring; and, unless a German mob differs essentially
from a French one, we shall smell gunpowder to-morrow. I should be
sorry to, see my ancient preceptor fragmentally distributed as an
offering to the goddess of discord."

"Don't speak of it, August Reignold, my dear boy!" said the Professor
in manifest terror. "I wouldn't mind much being hauled up to a
lamp-post, for I am heavy enough to break any in Frankfort down; but
the bare notion of dismemberment fills my soul with fear. Well says
the poet, _varium et mutabile_; and he might safely have applied it
to the people. Will you believe that I, whose whole soul is engrossed
with the thoughts of unity and the public weal, was actually hissed
and hooted at as a traitor, when I emerged to-day from the assembly?"

"It is the penalty you must pay for your political greatness,"
I replied. "But, if I were you, I should back out of the thing
altogether. Cobbling constitutions is rather dangerous work in such
times as these; and it strikes me that your valuable health may be
somewhat impaired by your exertions."

"Heaven knows," said the Professor devoutly, "that I would willingly
die for my country--that is, in my bed. But I do begin to perceive
that I am overworking this frail tenement of clay. Once let this
crisis be past, and I shall return to the university, resume my
philosophic labours, and finish my inchoate treatise upon the
'Natural History of Axioms.'"

"You will do wisely, Professor, and humanity will owe you a debt:
only don't employ that fellow Blum as your publisher. _Apropos_, what
is Simon, of Treves saying to this state of matters?"

"Simon of Treves," replied my learned friend, "is little better than
an arrogant coxcomb. He had the inconceivable audacity to laugh in
my face, when I proposed, on the ground of common ancestry, to open
negotiations with the Thracians, and to ask me if it would not be
desirable to include the whole of the Peloponnesus."

"He must indeed be a blockhead! Well, Professor, keep quiet for the
evening, and don't show yourself in the streets. I am going to take
a little stroll of observation before bed, and to-morrow morning we
shall hold a committee of personal safety."

On ordinary occasions, the streets of Frankfort are utterly deserted
by ten o'clock. This night, however, the case was different. Groups
of ill-looking, ruffianly fellows, were collected at the corners of
the streets; and more than once, beneath the blouse, I could detect
the glitter of a furtive weapon. There were lights and bustle in the
club-houses, and every thing betokened the approach of a popular
emeute.

"You will do well," said I to the Swiss porter of the _Russischer
Hof_ on re-entering, "to warn any strangers in your house to keep
within doors to-morrow. Unless I am strangely mistaken, we shall have
a repetition of the scenes in Paris to-morrow. In the mean time, I
shall trouble you for my key."

I rose next morning at six, and looked out of my window, half
expecting to see a barricade; but for once I was disappointed--the
Germans are a much slower set than the French. At nine, however,
there were reasonable symptoms of commotion, and I could hear the
hoarse roar of a mob in the distance whilst I was occupied in shaving.

Presently up came a waiter.

"The Herr Professor desires me to say that, if you have no objection,
he would be glad to breakfast in your room." My apartments were on
the third story.

"Show him up," said I; and my friend entered as pale as death.

"O August Reignold, this is a horrible business!"

"Pshaw!" said I, "how can you expect unity without a row?"

"But they tell me that the mob are already breaking into the
assembly--into the free, inviolable, sacred parliament of Germany!"

"Is that all? They might, in my humble opinion, be doing a great deal
worse."

"And they are beginning to put up barricades."

"That's serious," said I; "however, one comfort is, that they expect
somebody to attack them. Take your coffee, Professor, and let us
await events with fortitude. You are tolerably safe here."

The Professor groaned, for his spirit was sorely troubled. I really
felt for the poor man, who was now beginning, for the first time,
to taste the bitter fruits of revolution. They were as ashes in his
academical mouth.

There was a balcony before my window, from which I could survey the
whole of the Zeil, or principal street of Frankfort. The people were
swarming below as busy as a disturbed nest of ants. A huge gang of
fellows, with pickaxes, took up their post immediately in front of
the hotel, and began to demolish the pavement with a tolerable show
of alacrity.

"Here is the work of unity begun in earnest!" I exclaimed. "Where
is your armed burgher guard now, Professor? This is a glorious
development of your national theories! Quite right, gentlemen; upset
that carriage--roll out those barrels. In five minutes you will have
erected as pretty a fortalice as would have crowned the sconce of
Drumsnab, if Dugald Dalgetty had had his will. The arrangement also
of stationing sharpshooters at the neighbouring windows is judicious.
Have a care, Professor! If any of these patriots should chance to
recognise a recusant member, you may possibly have the worst of it.
For the sake of shelter, and to prevent accidents, I shall even put
my portmanteau in front of us; for damaged linen is better than an
ounce of lead in the thorax."

In a very short time the barricade, was completed, but as yet no
assailants had appeared. This circumstance seemed to astonish even
the insurgents, who held a consultation, and then, with tolerable
philosophy, proceeded to light their pipes. They were not altogether
composed of the lower orders; some of them seemed to belong to the
middle-classes, and were the active directors of the defence. We
could not, of course, tell what was going on in other parts of the
town, for all communication was barred. Better for us it was so, for
about this time Prince Lichnowsky, and Major von Auerswaldt were
murdered.

A considerable period of time elapsed, and yet there was no
appearance of the soldiery. I had almost begun to think that the
insurrection might pass away without bloodshed, when a mounted
aide-de-camp rode up and conferred with the leaders on the barricade.
From his gestures it was evident that he was urging them to disperse,
but this they peremptorily refused. Shortly afterwards a body of
Austrian soldiers charged up the street at double-quick time, and the
firing began in earnest.

"I am a doomed man!" cried the Professor, and he leaped convulsively
on my bed. "As sure as Archimedes was killed in his closet, I shall
be dragged out to the street and massacred!"

"No fear of that," said I. "Body of Bacon, man! do you think that
those fellows have nothing else to do than to hunt out philosophers?
That's sharp work though! The windows are strongly manned, and I fear
the military will suffer."

The loud explosion of a cannon shook the hotel, and a grateful sound
it was, for I knew that, if artillery were employed, the cause of
order was secure. It produced, however, a contrary effect on the
Professor, who thought he was listening to his death-knell. On a
sudden there was a trampling on the stairs.

"They are coming for me!" groaned the Professor. "_Ora pro nobis!_
I shall never read a lecture more!" And sure enough the door was
flung open, and five or six Prussian soldiers, bearing their muskets,
entered. Klingemann dropped down in a swoon.

"You must excuse ceremony, gentlemen," said the corporal; "we have
orders to dislodge the rioters." And forthwith the whole party
stepped out on the balcony, and commenced a regular fusillade.
Presently one of them dropped his weapon, and staggered into the
room; he had received a bad wound in the shoulder. Immediately
afterwards a bullet went plump into my portmanteau.

"Oh confound it!" cried I; "if they are beginning to attack property,
it is full time to be on the alert. With your leave, friend, I shall
borrow your musket."

Next morning I took a final farewell of the Professor. The good
man was much agitated, for, besides his bodily terror, he had been
suffering from the effects of a violent purgative attack.

"I have thought seriously over what you said, my dear boy, and I
begin to perceive that I have been acting very much like a fool.
I shall pack up my chattels this evening, wash my hands of public
affairs, and return to lay my old bones in peace beside those of my
predecessors in the university."

"You can't do better, Professor; and if, in your prelections, you
would omit all notice of Harmodius and Aristogiton, and say as little
as possible about the Lacedæmonian code, it might tend to promote the
welfare of your students, both in this world and in the next."

"Of that, my dear August Reignold, I am now thoroughly convinced. But
you must admit that the abstract idea of unity--"

"Is utter fudge! You see the result of it already in the blood which
is thickening in the streets. Adieu, Professor! Put your cockade in
the fire, and offer my warmest congratulations to your friend Mr
Simon of Treves."

Two days afterwards I experienced a genuine spasm of satisfaction
while setting my foot on Dutch ground at Arnheim. The change from
a democratic to a conservative country was so exhilarating, that I
nearly slew myself by drinking confusion to democracy in bumpers of
veritable Schiedam.



SATIRES AND CARICATURES OF THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY.[1]


A Comic History of England would be an exceedingly curious, and even
a valuable work. We do not mean a caricatured history, with great
men turned into ridicule, and important events burlesqued; such
absurdities may provoke pity, but they will hardly extort a smile
from any whose suffrage is worth courting. We have had a vast deal
of comic literature in this country during the last dozen years;
quite a torrent of _facetiæ_, a surfeit of slang and puns. One or
two popular humorists gave the impetus, and set a host of imitators
sliding and wriggling down the inclined plane leading from wit
and humour to buffoonery and bad taste. The majority reached in
an instant the bottom of the slope, and have ever since remained
there. The truth is, the funny style has been overdone; the supply
of jokers has exceeded the demand for jokes, until the very word
"comic" resounds unpleasantly upon the public tympanum. It were
a change to revert for a while to the wit of our forefathers, at
least as good, we suspect, as much of more modern manufacture. And
therefore, we repeat, a comic English history, whose claims to
the quality should be founded on its illustration by the songs,
satires, and caricatures of its respective periods, would be
interesting and precious in many ways; particularly as giving an
insight into popular feelings and characteristics, and often as
throwing additional light upon the causes of important revolutions
and political changes. It would certainly be a very difficult book
to compile. Instead of beginning at the usual starting-post of Roman
invasion, it could hardly be carried back to the first William. The
Saxons may possibly have revenged themselves on their conquerors by
satirical ditties, and by rude and grotesque delineations; but it
may be doubted whether any authenticated specimens of either their
poetry or painting are in existence at the present day. It would not
surprise us if King John's courtiers had curried favour with their
master by lampooning the absent Coeur-de-Lion; and doubtless when
there were men sufficiently sacrilegious to slay a churchman at the
altar, others may have ventured to satirise in rude doggrel the
pride and presumption of Thomas à Becket. But have their graceless
effusions survived? Can they be traced in black letter, or deciphered
on the blocks of wood and stone referred to in Mr Wright's preface?
We fear not; and we believe that, up to the date of the invention
of printing, the history suggested would be very meagre, and the
task of writing it most ungrateful. For some time after that date
the humorous illustrations would be written, and not pictorial;
songs and lampoons, perhaps, but of caricatures few or none. For
although caricature, in one variety or other, is ancient as the
Pyramids, its introduction is recent into the country where, of all
others, it seems most at home. Fostered by political liberty, it has
naturalised itself kindly on English soil, but its foreign origin
remains undeniable. Already, in the sixteenth century, Italy had her
Caracci, and France her Callot; whilst in England we vainly seek,
until the appearance of Hogarth, a caricaturist whose name abides in
our memories, or whose works grace our museums.

It is evident, then, that the easiest way to write a history of the
kind we have spoken of, is to begin at the end and write backwards.
At any rate the historian avoids discouragement, at the very
commencement, from the paucity of materials. And that is the plan
Mr Wright has adopted. Breaking new ground, he naturally selected
the spot most likely to reward his toil, and pitched upon the reigns
of the first three Georges. He could hardly have chosen a more
interesting period; and certainly, without coming inconveniently near
to the present day, he could have fixed on none more prolific in the
satires and drolleries he has made it his business to disinter and
reproduce.

The contents of Mr Wright's book would sort into two comprehensive
classes--the social and the political; the former the least
voluminous, but the most entertaining. Political satires and
caricatures, under the first two Georges, possess but a moderate
attraction at the present day; and it is not till the period of
the American war--we might almost say not until that of the French
Revolution--that they excite interest, and move to mirth. The hits
at the follies of society at large have a more general and enduring
interest than those levelled at individuals and intrigues long since
passed away. The first ten years of the accession of the house of
Hanover were poor both in the number and quality of caricatures; and
the remoteness of the period has enhanced the difficulty of finding
them. Written satires and pasquinades were abundant, but, to judge
from those preserved, few were worth preserving. Of these ephemeral
publications there exists no important collection, either public or
private. Of caricatures, more are to be got at, although, strange
to say, the British Museum contains very few. There was far less of
humour and spirit in those that appeared during the early part of the
eighteenth century than in those produced during its latter portion.
In fact, until the reign of George II., the art could hardly be said
to be cultivated. In the first hundred pages of the book before us,
which comprise nearly the whole reign of George I., we find only
fourteen cuts--a small proportion of the three hundred scattered
through the two volumes. And scarcely one of the fourteen has the
qualities essential to a genuine caricature. They aim at telling
a story, or conveying an insinuation, rather than at burlesquing
persons. Sometimes the prints or medals (the latter were a favourite
vehicle for the circulation of satire) were simply allegories, and
as such are incorrectly designated by the word caricature, which, as
derived from the Italian _caricare_, implies a thing overcharged or
exaggerated in its proportions. As an instance of these allegories,
we may cite a Jacobite medal, where Britannia is seen weeping, whilst
the horse of Hanover tramples on the lion and unicorn. The English
nation was at that period usually personified by Britannia and her
lion, until Gillray, much later--taking the idea, it is said, from Dr
Arbuthnot's satire--hit off the humourous figure of John Bull, which
has been preserved, with more or less modification, by all subsequent
caricaturists. Hogarth, who first attracted notice in 1723-4, by his
attacks upon the degeneracy of the stage--then abandoned to opera,
masquerade, and pantomime--brought up a broader style of caricature
than his predecessors, but still he was too emblematical. Then, for
a time, caricature got into the hands of amateur artists--female as
well as male. Thus a humorous drawing of the Italian singers, Cuzzoni
and Farinelli, and of Heidegger the ugly manager, is attributed to
the Countess of Burlington. Then, after an interregnum, during which
caricature languished, Gillray arose--Gillray, who, coarse and often
indecent as he was, (in which respects, however, he did but conform
to the tone and manners of his day,) was unquestionably the ablest
of his tribe, the most thoroughly English, and the most irresistibly
humorous caricaturist we have had. The refined might tax him with
grossness, but his delineations went home to the multitude; and to
the multitude the caricaturist must address himself, if he would
produce effect, and enjoy influence. For a while, during the war with
France, Gillray's active pencil was a power in the state. In his turn
he was surpassed in coarseness and vulgarity, but not in wit, by his
contemporary Rowlandson.

The sketches before us, of the history of England under the house of
Hanover, are not to be considered as dependent on the satires and
caricatures used to illustrate them. They form a general narrative
of the most prominent events of a very important century, with
which are interwoven, when opportunity offers, the most remarkable
pen and pencil pasquinades of the day. The latter, however, have
not always been obtainable, or are not worth recording. As we have
already mentioned, they are scarce at the commencement of the book,
which opens at the death of Queen Anne in 1714. When Jacobite plots
were rife, and party-feeling ran so high as to produce frequent
bloody struggles in London streets, between the Whigs or Hanoverians
and the "Jacks," as the adherents of the Pretender were styled by
their opponents, there appear to have existed no draughtsmen of much
talent for caricature; whilst the poetical satires, judging from
the specimens furnished by Mr Wright, are very middling in merit,
although exceedingly numerous. If there was little wit, there was
much violence and abuse on both sides. On the part of the Jacobites,
agitation was the order of the day; and the mob, both in London and
the provinces, were incited to many excesses--such as attacking
houses, robbing passengers, pulling down Dissenting chapels, and
drinking James the Third's health in the open streets. In Manchester,
in June 1715, the population were for several days masters of
the town. The results were the passing of the Riot Act, and the
quartering of cavalry in the places most disaffected. The Whigs, on
their part, were not idle, but carried on a brisk war of words, and
raked up all the old stories about the Pretender--that he was no
king's son, but a miller's offspring, conveyed into the Queen's bed
in a warming-pan by the Jesuit Father Petre. Of course such tales as
these gave a fine handle to squib and lampoon; and, in reference to
the Jesuit's name, the Whigs designated the Pretender as Peterkin or
Perkin--an appellation offering a convenient coincidence with that
of a previous impudent aspirant to the English crown. To sneers of
this kind the Jacobite minstrels manfully and spiritedly replied; and
although the muse was less propitious in England than in Scotland,
there is no doubt these effusions had a considerable effect upon the
people. But the suppression of the rebellion damped their spirits,
and with it their poetic fire; whilst the exulting Whigs triumphantly
flapped their wings, and crowed a yet louder strain. Perkin and the
warming-pan were the burden of every lay, and a peal of parodies
celebrated the flight of the Stuart.

    "'Twas when the seas were roaring
      With blasts of northern wind,
    Young Perkin lay deploring,
      On warming-pan reclined
    Wide o'er the roaring billows
      He cast a dismal look,
    And shiver'd like the willows
      That tremble o'er the brook."

One would think the "Oxford scholars," accounted such fervent
Jacobites, might have replied victoriously to such tepid couplets as
this. But their hearts were down at their King's repulse. And poor
as the verses were, no doubt they took wonderfully at the time,--so
much, in such things, depends upon the _apropos_. And now a large
section of the Tories, previously favourable to the Jacobites, broke
away from them in their misfortune, made their peace with the ruling
powers, and took the oath of allegiance. But long after fighting
was over in the North--to be revived only in '45 by the chivalrous
Charles Edward--the Jacobite mob kept London in hot water, and,
thanks to the inefficiency of the police, might have done serious
mischief, but for the Muggite Societies formed at that period. These
were simply Whig clubs, meeting at certain public-houses, (the
Magpie and Stump, in Newgate Street, was one,) and sallying out
upon occasion to fight the Jacobites. The latter had also taverns
of rendezvous, but these were few, and it was chiefly the lowest
mob that in London still sported the White Rose, and cursed the
Hanoverian. In most of the many conflicts that then occurred, the
"Jacks" got the worst of it. If they assembled to break windows on an
illumination night, or to burn William or George in effigy, they were
soon assailed by the Loyal Society, or some other Whig association,
who, acting as special constables without having taken the oath,
drubbed them with cudgels, and extinguished their bonfires. It would
appear that the Jacks did not often venture to impede the Whig mob
in the performance of analogous ceremonies; since we read of a
certain Fifth of November, when caricature effigies of the Pretender
and his chief adherents and supporters were carried in triumph
through the streets. "First, two men bearing each a warming-pan,
with a representation of the infant Pretender--a nurse attending
him with a sucking bottle, and another playing with him by beating
the warming-pan. These were followed by three trumpeters, playing
Lillibulero and other Whig tunes. Then came a cart with Ormond and
Marr, appropriately dressed. This was followed by another cart,
containing the Pope and Pretender seated together, and Bolingbroke
as the secretary of the latter. They were all drawn backwards, with
halters round their necks." The sole opposition made by the Jacobites
to this outrageous demonstration, was by the somewhat paltry
proceeding of stealing the faggots collected for the Whig bonfire.
Four months after this, the Jacobites attempted a procession, and a
great fight ensued, in which the Whigs were victorious, after having
"made rare work for the surgeons." The government of the day showed
little mercy to the rioters. Seditious ballad-singers, and persons
holding disloyal discourse, were flogged and pilloried; and at last,
the hanging of several of the disaffected for storming a Mug-house,
put an end to the disturbances. That the Whigs did not bear their
triumph very meekly appears from the following paragraph, extracted
from _Read's Weekly Journal_ of June 15, 1717.

     "Last Monday being supposed to be the birthday of the Sovereign
     of the White Rose, in respect to the anniversary, an honest Whig
     went from the Roebuck to St James's, with a jackdaw finely dressed
     in white roses, and set on a warming-pan bedeckt with the same
     sweet-scented commodity, which caused abundance of laughter all
     the way, to the great mortification of the Knights Companions of
     that order, and all the other Jacks, to see their sovereign so
     maltreated in the person of his representative."

The poor crushed Jacobites were fain to grin and bear it.

The suppression of political riots was followed by a great prevalence
of highway robberies, in and around the metropolis. The streets
of London were not safe, even in the daytime; and ladies went out
in their chairs guarded by servants with loaded blunderbusses.
The following extracts from newspapers of the time read oddly
enough--especially when we remember that not a hundred and thirty
years have elapsed since the crimes recorded in them occurred.

     "Thursday, 21st January 1720. About five o'clock in the evening,
     the stage-coach from London to Hampstead was attacked and robbed
     by highwaymen, at the foot of the hill, and one of the passengers
     severely beaten for attempting to hide his money."

     "Sunday 24. At eight o'clock in the evening, two highwaymen
     attacked a gentleman in a coach on the south side of St Paul's
     churchyard, and robbed him."

     "Sunday 31. A gentleman robbed and murdered in Bishopsgate street."

     "Monday, February 1. The Duke of Chandos, coming from Canons, had
     another encounter with highwaymen, whom he captured."

     "Tuesday 2. The postboy was attacked by three highwaymen in Tyburn
     road, but the Duke of Chandos, happening to pass that way, came to
     his rescue."

His grace of Chandos seems to have been a sort of amateur
thief-taker. Then we read of stage-coaches stopped and robbed
between London and Stoke Newington, and of a certain day, when
"_all_ the stage-coaches coming from Surrey to London were robbed
by highwaymen." At last a reward of one hundred pounds was offered
for the apprehension of any highwayman within five miles of London.
Amongst those captured were several persons of good repute in their
respective callings. They included a London tradesman, a duke's
valet, and the keeper of a boxing-school.

The speculative madness that prevailed in the year 1719-20, the
"bubble mania," as it was called, offered a fertile field to the
satirist. The contagion was caught from France, where, about that
time, John Law projected his celebrated Mississippi Company, and,
by his wild financial manoeuvres, first rendered money a mere
drug, then plunged Paris and France into the profoundest misery. The
outline of Law's history is familiar to most persons. It will be
remembered how, having killed a man in a duel in his own country, he
broke his prison, and fled to France, met the young Duke of Orleans
at the house of a courtesan named Duclos, and, being handsome,
accomplished, and graceful, contracted with him an intimacy that led
eventually to the hatching of the notable Mississippi scheme. The
delusion began to flourish towards the middle of 1718, and was at its
apogee at the close of the following year. The market for the shares
was in an insignificant street, still existing in Paris under the
name of the Rue Quincampoix, where every house was soon subdivided
into an infinity of little offices, and a dwelling whose usual rent
was of six hundred livres yielded one hundred thousand; where a
cobbler gained two hundred livres a-day, by hiring out his shed to
ladies who came to share in and look on at the game; and a hunchback
earned a handsome income by lending his shoulders as a writing-desk.
The five-hundred-livre shares rose to twenty thousand livres--to a
premium, that is to say, of four thousand per cent. Money was for the
time so abundant, that goods rose immensely, and articles of luxury
were all bought up. Cloth of gold, a French writer tells us, became
exceeding rare, except in the streets, where it was seen draping the
plebeian persons of the newly-enriched speculators. A nobleman and
a Mississippian disputed a partridge in a cook's shop: the latter
obtained it for two hundred livres, or more than eight pounds!
Beranger has devoted a witty stanza to that year of madness.

    "C'était la régence alors
      Et sans hyperbole,
    Grâce aux plus drôles de corps,
      La France étoit folle;
    Tous les hommes s'amusaient,
    Et les femmes se prêtaient
    A la gaudriole an gué,
        A la gaudriole."

As an essential preliminary to holding the office of
Comptroller-general of the French finances, Law allowed the Abbé
de Tençin to convert him to the religion of Rome. This apostasy,
and its disastrous consequences to France, became the subject of
many squibs and satirical verses when the fallacy of the system
ultimately appeared. Before the panic came, however, and an attempted
realisation on the part of some of the largest holders proved
the exaggerated and fictitious value of the bonds, the mania for
speculation had crossed the Channel, and raged in this country. The
South-Sea bill passed through parliament, and received the royal
assent; and on a sudden stock-jobbing seemed to become the sole
business of all classes. The Tory papers ridiculed the folly. Sir
Robert Walpole published a warning pamphlet, a proclamation forbade
the formation of unauthorised companies; but all in vain. Shares
in the most absurd bubbles were eagerly caught at. "A company was
even announced, and its shares bought, which was merely advertised
as 'for an undertaking which shall in due time be revealed.' Among
other odd projects were companies 'for planting of mulberry trees,
and breeding of silk-worms in Chelsea Park;' 'for importing a number
of large jack-asses from Spain, in order to propagate a larger breed
of mules in England;' 'for fattening of hogs.' In August, the stock
of the various London companies was calculated to exceed the value
of five hundred millions." About this time Law's credit balloon
began to collapse, which was a hint to the English jobbers of what
they might in their turn expect. It was nearly the end of the year
when he was compelled to fly from Paris, and take refuge in Venice,
where he died, an impoverished gambler, in May 1729, leaving for sole
inheritance a diamond worth about 1500 pounds sterling, which he had
been in the habit of pawning when hard pushed. Many weeks before his
departure from France, however, the London companies were discredited
and turned into ridicule by a host of songs and satirical pieces, one
of the best of which was the celebrated _South-Sea Ballad; or, Merry
Remarks upon Exchange-Alley Bubbles_.

"From the month of October to the end of the year, songs, and squibs,
and pamphlets of all descriptions, on the misfortunes occasioned by
the explosion of the bubble system, became exceedingly numerous....
The general feeling against the directors was becoming so strong in
the month of November, that we are told it had become a practice
among the ladies, when in playing at cards they turned up a knave,
to cry, 'There's a director for you!'" The period of the South-Sea
bubble was particularly prolific in caricatures. A vast number
appeared in Holland and France, and for the first time political
caricatures became common in England. Those of which copies are given
in Mr Wright's book have small claims to wit. Most of the foreign
ones were aimed at Law, and those published in this country at the
'Change Alley speculators. Hogarth's first political caricature
related to the bubbles of 1720, and appeared the following year.

As in France the temporary glut of wealth produced by Law's financial
operations had the most unfavourable effect upon the public morals,
so in England "the South-Sea convulsion had hardly subsided, when a
general outcry was heard against the alarming increase of atheism,
profaneness, and immorality; and an attempt was made to suppress
them by act of parliament, but the bill for that purpose was not
allowed to pass." Masquerades were especially inveighed against
by the upholders of propriety, and were made the subject of much
satire. The ugliness of Heidegger, "_le surintendant des plaisirs
de l'Angleterre_," as the French called him; the conceit and
caprices of the opera-singers, then, as now, notorious for their
extortionate greediness and constant bickerings and jealousies;
the neglect of Shakspeare and the old dramatists; the prevailing
taste for pantomime and buffoonery--were so many targets for the
wits and caricaturists of the day. But neither Hogarth's pencil
nor the pungent pen of Pope had power to correct the depravity of
public taste. Masquerades continued the favourite amusement of the
town, and opera and pantomime preserved their vogue. The satirists
persevered in their crusade, and as late as 1742 we find Hogarth
still working the mine, in a capital caricature of Monsieur Desnoyer
and Signora Barberina,--the Taglioni and Perrot of their day whose
graceful attitudes he cleverly burlesques. Previously to the year
1737 the stage was used as a political engine, and violent attacks
on the government were introduced into farces and pantomimes. Some
of these were direct and open pasquinades, and gave great umbrage to
the ministry; and amongst them two of the most conspicuous were a
lampooning farce called _Pasquin_, and a dramatic satire entitled the
_Historical Register for the year 1736_, both by Fielding. A still
more abusive piece, to be entitled _The Golden Rump_, was spoken
of as forthcoming; but, before it appeared, the matter was brought
before the House of Commons; an act was passed "for restraining
the licentiousness of the stage," and the office of Licenser of
Plays was established. Thus a stop was put to stage-politics: but
nevertheless--and although, in an age when parties ran so high, this
suppression must materially have diminished the attractiveness of
theatrical entertainments--the theatres continued, for many years,
and from various causes, to receive a very large share of public
attention, and to be made the subject of numerous prose and verse
pamphlets, and of occasional caricatures. Pantomime and burlesque
were still in vogue, but not to the exclusion of the regular drama;
and Shakspeare gained ground, interpreted, as he was, by first-rate
actors--by Garrick, Quin, and Macklin, by Mrs Woffington, Mrs
Clive, Mrs Cibber, and others. About the middle of the century, the
rivalry between Drury and the Garden ran so high as to be a subject
of annoyance and inconvenience to the public. "In October 1749 the
Covent-Garden company opened the theatrical campaign with _Romeo
and Juliet_--a play in which Barry, and especially Mrs Cibber, had
shone with peculiar excellence. Garrick had armed himself for the
contest: he had prepared a rival actress in Miss Bellamy; and he
produced, to the surprise of his opponents, the same play of _Romeo
and Juliet_, at Drury Lane, on the very night it came out at Covent
Garden. The town was divided for a long time between the two 'Romeo
and Juliets,' which produced a mass of contradictory criticism, and
finished by almost emptying both houses, for every body began to tire
of the monotonous repetition of the same play." There is not much
danger, at the present day, of rivalry of this sort. How Garrick
and Quin would stare, were they galvanised out of their graves, to
see Grisi queen of Covent Garden, and Jullien lord of Drury Lane!
Theatrical opposition is a thing nobody now dreams of, unless it
be between a French vaudeville company and an English troop of low
comedians. And were a contest to arise between the English theatres,
it would most likely be of the nature of that which occurred in the
reign of George the First, between the rival harlequins, when it was
common enough for the two great theatres to bring out pantomimes
founded on the same subject--as in 1723, when _Harlequin Dr Faustus_
had great success at both Drury Lane and Covent Garden. That was
also the period of the first introduction, on the English stage,
of wild beasts, dragons, monsters, and goblins of various kinds,
besides mountebanks, tumblers, and rope-dancers. Even Garrick,
however, did not disdain the pantomime, when he saw in it the means
to annoy and injure a rival. "At the beginning of 1750 he brought
out a new pantomime, entitled _Queen Mab_, in which Woodward acted
the part of harlequin. The great success of this piece, which drew
crowded houses for forty nights, without intermission, gave rise to
a very popular caricature, entitled _The Theatrical Steelyard_, in
which Mrs Cibber, Mrs Woffington, Quin, and Barry, are outweighed
by Woodward's _Harlequin_ and Garrick's _Queen Mab_. Rich, (the
Covent-Garden manager,) dressed in the garb of harlequin, lies on
the ground expiring." Excepting the two important particulars, that
good actors were then as plentiful as they now are scarce, and that
the two great theatres were occupied by Shakspeare and Englishmen,
instead of by fiddlers and foreigners, there is much coincidence
between some recent occurrences in the theatrical world and others a
hundred years old. Then, as now, attempts were made to drive French
actors from the country. These attempts arose, however, from no
apprehension of foreigners injuring or eclipsing native talent, then
so superior to such fears, but from the anti-Gallican feeling abroad
at the time. During the Westminster election of 1749 a company of
French players were performing at the Haymarket, and Lord Trentham,
the government candidate, was accused of favouring and protecting
them. He spoke French well, and was said to affect French manners;
and all this, of course, was made the most of for electioneering
purposes. He was lampooned as "the champion of the French strollers;"
and the mob, with their usual wisdom and admirable logic, said "that
learning to talk French was only a step towards the introduction of
French tyranny." A deluge of ballads descended upon the heads of the
candidate and his assumed _protégés_; and the quality of the poetry
seems to have been on a par with the liberality of the sentiments--to
judge, at least, from the following brilliant specimen:--

    "Our natives are starving, whom Nature has made
    The brightest of wits, and to comedy bred;
    Whilst apes are caress'd, which God made by chance,
    The worst of all mortals, the strollers from France."

This is wretched enough, even for an election ditty. And we are
little disposed to join in the regret expressed in Mr Wright's
preface, that no one, as far as he has been able to discover, "has
made any considerable collection of political songs, satires,
and other such tracts, published during the last century and the
present;" since the wit and merit of those he has been able to
get together are in general so exceedingly small. He is, very
judiciously, sparing of his extracts, except when he stumbles upon
a really good song or set of verses, a few of which are scattered
through his volumes.

To return to the mob-hatred of the French. After the Westminster
election, this feeling was kept up by squib and caricature; and
in November 1755, Garrick having occasion to employ some French
dancers, in a grand spectacle brought out at Drury Lane under the
title of _The Chinese Festival_, a theatre row was the result. It
was kept up for five nights; and on the sixth the mob smashed the
lamps, demolished the scenery, and did several thousand pounds'
worth of damage. This popular antipathy to the French did not,
however, extend to the produce of France, or prevent the higher
classes from patronising and importing French luxuries of all kinds,
as well as a host of milliners, governesses, quacks, valets, and
professors of other menial and decorative arts. The Gallomania of
the fashionable world offered a fine field to the caricaturists, who
made the most of it, to the great delight of the populace. French
fashions, cookery, education, and nicknacks, were alternately taken
as targets for the shafts of ridicule. Mr Wright transfers to his
pages a ludicrous fragment of a print by Boitard, entitled "The
Imports of Great Britain from France," in which an Englishwoman of
quality is seen embracing and caressing a French female dancer,
and assuring her that her arrival is to the honour and delight of
England. And the mob of that day went so far as to believe that it
was the love of the aristocracy for French perfumes and delicacies,
cooks and coiffeurs, which prevented English ministers from properly
protecting the national honour, and avenging the insults put upon
us by our neighbours. The real evil, far more important than the
consumption of French finery and cosmetics, was the importation of
French corruption and immorality, so prevalent in England during
the whole reign of George II., and during a portion of that of
his successor. By this time the masquerades and _ridottos_, which
had kept their ground in spite of the moralists, had grown so
flagrant in their excesses and indecencies that, about the end of
1755, they were nearly suppressed; the earthquake at Lisbon having
come to the aid of the anti-maskers, who took advantage of the
panic it caused in London, to represent it as a judgment on the
profligacy of the age. Previously to that, masquerades--not only
those at public establishments, such as Vauxhall and Ranelagh,
but at the private houses of persons of rank and fashion--offered
glaring examples of indecorum--to use the very mildest word--until
at last Miss Chudleigh, maid of honour to the Princess of Wales,
and afterwards Duchess of Kingston, showed herself at the Venetian
ambassador's in a close-fitting dress of flesh-coloured silk. We
may judge of the court morals of the time from the circumstance,
that her royal mistress's sole rebuke was by throwing her own veil
over the immodest beauty. The host of caricatures to which this
gave rise, and the grossness of many of them, in that day of great
pictorial license, are easily imagined. After this there were very
few masquerades during ten or twelve years, at the end of which
time the court again set the fashion of them, soon after George the
Third's accession. Towards 1770, Mrs Cornelys got up her "Harmonic
Meetings," at Carlisle House in Soho Square. These subscription balls
and masquerades were attended by most of the nobility and leaders of
the _ton_; and, at one of them, we learn the presence of "two royal
dukes, and nearly all the fashionable portion of the aristocracy. On
this occasion, Colonel Luttrell (the same who had opposed Wilkes in
the election for Middlesex) appeared as a dead corpse in a shroud,
in his coffin." Much used, from the very first, for purposes of
intrigue, these assemblies soon became unbearably licentious. The
company fell off, both in numbers and respectability, until the only
way to fill the rooms was by the admission of bad characters. This
made them sink lower and lower, until "we read in the _St James's
Chronicle_ of April 23, 1795, the remark that 'No amusement seems
to have fallen into greater contempt, in this country, than the
masquerades.... They have been lately mere assemblages of the idle
and profligate of both sexes, who made up in indecency what they
wanted in wit.'" A description that has ever since been applicable to
London masquerades, which still continue, we apprehend, to be mere
pretexts for debauchery; whilst even in Paris, whose atmosphere,
and the character of whose inhabitants, have generally been found
more favourable to that class of amusements, the famed opera balls
have sunk, within the last twenty years, into the saturnalia of idle
students, profligate apprentices, and ladies of uncertain virtue.

It would be unjust to leave out Samuel Foote, in a work treating
of the satires and caricatures of the last century. Possessing
neither the brush of Hogarth nor the pen of Churchill, he wielded a
weapon as formidable in its way--that, namely, of dramatic mimicry,
or stage satire; and he is properly named by Mr Wright the great
theatrical caricaturist of the age. For a time, the reckless and
vindictive wit was the terror of the town: an affront to him, real
or imaginary, caused the unlucky offender to be paraded before the
world, under some fictitious name, upon the boards of his theatre,
which, at first, was the "little" one in the Haymarket. For some
time Foote and Macklin had it between them, but, disagreeing,
Macklin left, whereupon his ex-partner immediately caricatured him
upon the very stage he had so lately trodden. "The Haymarket was
an unlicensed theatre, and Foote evaded the law by serving his
audience with tea, and calling the performance in the bills 'Mr
Foote's giving tea to his friends.' His advertisement ran, 'Mr Foote
presents his compliments to his friends and the public, and desires
them to drink tea at the Little Theatre in the Haymarket, every
morning, at playhouse prices.' The house was always crowded, and
Foote came forward and said, that as he had some young actors in
training, he would go on with his instructions whilst the tea was
preparing." Afterwards he got a license, and rebuilt the theatre.
But his bitter wit and gross personalities continually got him into
trouble, frequently caused his pieces to be prohibited; exposed him
to threatened, if not to actual castigation; and, finally, were the
indirect cause of his death, accelerated, it is generally believed,
by shame and vexation at the false but revolting charge brought
against him by a clergyman he had savagely lampooned.

The fate of Hogarth was not dissimilar to that of Foote, with the
difference that the painter was slain literally with his own weapons.
Foote's victims had neither the ability nor the opportunity to expose
him, as he did them, upon the stage. The Methodists, Dr Johnson,
the East India Company, and the Duchess of Kingston, each in turn
subjected to his vicious attacks, retorted as best they might by
pamphlets and cudgels, but apparently made little impression on
the player's tough epidermis, until a disreputable parson devised
the poisoned dart with which to inflict a sure and cowardly wound.
But Hogarth caricatured others till others learned to caricature
him,--with less talent, certainly, but with sufficient malice to
annoy and harass the artist, and finally, it is said, to break his
heart. "His constant practice," says Mr Wright, "of introducing
contemporaries into his moral satires, had procured him a host of
enemies in the town; whilst his vain egotism, and the scornful tone
in which he spoke of the other artists of the age, offended and
irritated them." How seldom do satirists preserve temper and coolness
under the retort of their own aggressions! After more than a quarter
of a century passed in turning his neighbours into ridicule, Hogarth
might be thought able to endure a rub or two in his turn, and even to
receive them with good grace and a smiling countenance. But many a
veteran has found, to his cost, that a life passed in the field does
not render bullet-proof. Hogarth made good fight to the last, but
his offensive arms were better than his defensive ones; his enemies'
shot fell thick and fast, and all he could do was to die upon his
guns. For the last twelve or fifteen years of his life he appears
to have been particularly unpopular, and continually caricatured.
His _Analysis of Beauty_, published in 1753, drew upon him a great
deal of ridicule; and in 1758, his opposition to the foundation of
an Academy of Fine Art was the signal for a shower of abuse and
caricatures, more or less witty--oftener _less_ than _more_. But the
campaign that finished him--the Waterloo of the unlucky humorist--was
one he rashly undertook against Wilkes and Churchill, previously
his friends. This was imprudent in the extreme; for he might be
sure that all the minor curs, who had so long yelped at his heels,
would redouble their wearisome assaults when reinforced by such
formidable champions as the _North Briton_ and "Bruiser" Churchill.
Wilkes warned Hogarth that he would not be kicked unresistingly,
but the painter persevered; and Wilkes kept his word. No. 17 of the
_North Briton_ was stinging retaliation for No. 1 of _The Times_; and
Churchill's "Epistle to William Hogarth" was at least as galling
to the artist as his well-known portrait of "A Patriot" could be to
Wilkes. The quarrel was kept up with much spirit till the death of
Hogarth in October 1764.

The American war, and the ill-advised colonial legislation which
brought it on, gave rise to many caricatures, some of them of
considerable merit. The first of which a transcript is given us by
Mr Fairholt's graver, relates to the Boston tea-riots of 1770. In it
Lord North is pouring tea down the throat of America, personified
by a half-naked woman with a crown of feathers, who rejects the
unwelcome draught in his lordship's face. Britannia weeps in the
background, and Lord Chancellor Mansfield, the compiler of the
obnoxious acts, holds down the victim. When war actually broke
out, and the bloody fight of Bunker's Hill gave a foretaste of its
disasters, satires fell thick upon the ministry as well as upon
the king, whose will, the Opposition maintained, was law with Lord
North's cabinet. In June 1776 a long poem, smart enough, but very
violent and unpatriotic, was published under the title of _Lord
Chatham's Prophecy_.

    "Your plumèd corps though Percy cheers,
    And far-famed British grenadiers,
      Renown'd for martial skill;
    Yet Albion's heroes bite the plain,
    Her chiefs round gallant Howe are slain,
      On fallow Bunker's Hill."

Subsequent verses foretell all manner of evils to Great Britain,
and the whole poem breathes a spirit of exultation at our reverses,
which would have been less ungraceful from an American than from
an English pen, and which, at the present day, no amount of party
feeling would be held to justify. But the shamelessness of Whiggery
was then at its height; the pseudo-patriots of the time recked little
of their country's misfortunes when these gave them opportunity of
triumph over a political antagonist. What cared they for the reverses
of British arms, or the lopping off of Britain's colonies, if they
thereby saw themselves nearer the possession of the place and power
whose emoluments they so greedily coveted? Charles Fox, with his
faro-purse empty and an execution in his house, could hardly afford
to be particular as to the strict cleanliness of the path to the
treasury bench. Then or never was the moment to sacrifice public weal
to private advantage. And accordingly, when, "on the 3d December
1777, the Court was thunderstruck with the disastrous intelligence
of the surrender of General Burgoyne and his army at Saratoga, the
Opposition could hardly conceal their exultation: the disgrace and
loss which had fallen on the British arms were exaggerated, and
chanted about the streets in doggerel ballads." An "Ode on the
success of his Majesty's Arms," written in December, and printed in
the _Foundling Hospital for Wit_, celebrates ironically the glorious
results of the campaign, and the skill and prudence of the ministers
at home; and ends with a congratulation on the old tale of King
George's mechanical amusements:--

    "Then shall my lofty numbers tell,
    Who taught the royal babes to spell,
      And sovereign arts pursue;
    To mend a watch, or set a clock,
    New patterns shape for Hervey's frock,
      Or buttons make at Kew."

The homely tastes of George III., his love of farming, and habit
of amusing himself with a turning-lathe, were great themes for
scurrilous attacks upon the royal person, both in print and
caricature. "Mr King the button-maker" was held up to ridicule in
every low publication on the Opposition side of the question. The
_Oxford Magazine_ frequently returned to the charge, sometimes with
almost as much humour as impertinence. This was rather earlier than
the American war, which gave rise to still more offensive inuendoes
against the sovereign. Thus, when an outcry was got up against the
employment of Indians in conjunction with the British troops in North
America, and when all manner of horrible stories of cannibalism and
so forth were set afloat, we are shown a caricature of the king
squatted on the ground, cheek by jowl with a befeathered savage. The
Indian handles a tomahawk, the king holds a skull, and "the Allies"
(this is the title of the disgusting print) gnaw each at his own end
of a large human bone. The brutality of the conception renders such a
caricature as this far more unpleasant than the coarse, but generally
good-humoured, quizzes subsequently executed by Gillray on royal
foibles and economy. Some of our older readers may remember these.
They were published towards the end of the last century. Half-a-dozen
are excellently well copied on pages 205 to 211 of Mr Wright's second
volume. There is "The Introduction"--George III and Queen Charlotte
receiving their daughter-in-law the Princess of Prussia, and
bewildered with delight at the golden dowery she brings. Then we have
the King toasting his muffins, and the Queen frying her sprats; and
again, (the best of them,) the royal pair out for a walk, and majesty
overwhelming an unlucky pig-feeder by a volley of interrogative
iterations. But few caricatures bear description, and least of all
Gillray's, where the design is often of the simplest, and the humour
of the execution every thing.

Gillray's first attempts at caricature were on the occasion of Lord
Rodney's victory over De Grasse. It will be remembered that, when
the North Administration went out in 1782, one of the first acts of
their Liberal successors was to recall Rodney, a stanch Tory, on
pretext of his not having done all he ought to have done with the
West Indian fleet. England was badgered by her numerous enemies,
and her affairs looked altogether discouraging, when sudden news
arrived of the triumph which established her sovereignty of the
seas. Ministers found themselves in an awkward predicament. It was
neither gracious nor graceful to persist in the victor's recall,
and yet, what else could be done? His successor, Admiral Pigot, had
already sailed. Too late, an express was sent to stop him. "A cold
vote of thanks was given by both Houses to the victorious Rodney, and
he was raised to the peerage, but only as a baron, and was voted a
pension of but £2000 a-year." Such shabby reward for an achievement
of immense importance was, of course, not suffered to pass unnoticed
by the late ministry, now the Opposition. A fleet of caricatures was
launched, and amongst them were two by the then unknown Gillray. In
one of them, "King George runs towards the admiral with the reward
of a baron's coronet, and exclaims, (in allusion to Rodney's recall
and elevation to the peerage,) 'Hold, my dear Rodney, you have
done enough! I will now make a lord of you, and you shall have the
happiness of never being heard of again!'" Probably these maiden
efforts attracted little notice, for some time still elapsed before
Gillray made much use of his pencil for the public amusement. In
this same year of 1782, however, he brought out a clever caricature
of Fox, who had just resigned his foreign secretaryship on Lord
Shelburne's coming to be prime minister, _vice_ Rockingham, deceased.
In this print Charles James is represented, as a sort of parody on
Milton's Satan, gazing with envious eye at Shelburne and Pitt, as
they count their money on the treasury table.

                    "Aside he turned
    For envy, yet with jealous leer malign
    Eyed them askance."

The expression of Fox's face is excellent, and the likeness good,
but yet it wants something of the raciness of Gillray's later
works. Fox and Burke were the great butts of the satirists at this
particular moment, and also in the following year, on the occasion
of their coalition with Lord North. James Sayer, then in full force
as a caricaturist, and anxious to curry favour with his patron Pitt,
to whom he was subsequently indebted for more than one lucrative
place, was very severe upon them; and the power of caricature at
that time must have been very great, if it be true that Fox admitted
the severest blow received by his India Bill to have been from a
drawing of Sayer's. It was a cry of the day that Fox aimed at a
sort of Indian dictatorship for himself, and the satirists gave him
the nickname of Carlo Khan. In the caricature in question, entitled
"Carlo Khan's Triumphant Entry into Leadenhall Street," "Fox, in his
new character, is conducted to the door of the India House on the
back of an elephant, which exhibits the full face of Lord North,
and he is led by Burke as his imperial trumpeter; for he had been
the loudest supporter of the bill in the House of Commons. A bird
of ill-omen croaks from above the would-be monarch's doom." On the
other side of the question, several good caricatures also appeared,
levelled chiefly at William Pitt, then on the eve of his prime
ministership, and amongst these were three, published anonymously,
which Mr Wright is probably not mistaken in attributing to the pencil
of Rowlandson.

The imitation of French fashions and manners, and even of French
profligacy, already noticed as gaining ground in English society
about the middle of the eighteenth century, had reached the highest
pitch towards its close. Nothing could be more absurd than the
dresses of 1785, the enormous hats and prodigious _buffonts_ and
buckram monstrosities of the women, except perhaps the rush into
the opposite extreme which took place at the commencement of the
French Revolution. One of the caricatures of 1787, under the title
of "Mademoiselle Parapluie," shows us a young lady serving as an
umbrella, sheltering a whole family from a shower beneath the
tremendous brim of her hat, (a regular fore-and-after), and under the
protecting shadow of a protuberance, concerning whose composition
(crinoline not having then been invented) future ages must remain in
deplorable darkness. Then, every thing was sacrificed to breadth in
costume. Pass we over six or seven years, and the lady of fashion
who, at their commencement, could hardly get through a moderate-sized
doorway, might almost glide head-foremost through the keyhole. A
thin scanty robe, clinging close to the form, a turban and a single
lofty plume, a waist close up under the arms, a watch the size of
a Swedish turnip, with a profusion of seals and pendants, compose
the fashionable female attire of that day. The dress of the men is
equally ridiculous, both in cut and material, the great rage then
being for striped stuffs, known as Zebras, and employed for coats
as well as for the absurd pantaloons, puffed out round the hips and
buttoned tight on the leg, in vogue amongst the beaux of the period.
The modes that succeeded these were equally exaggerated and ugly. And
the frivolity and extravagance of the time kept pace with the follies
of dress. There was a rage for strange sights and extraordinary
exhibitions; and the Londoners, especially, carried this passion to
an extent that rendered them easy dupes of charlatans and impostors.
"It stands recorded in the newspapers of the time, on the 9th of
September 1785,--'Handbills were distributed this morning that a bold
adventurer meant to walk upon the Thames from Riley's Tea Gardens.'
We are further informed that, at the hour appointed, thousands of
people had crowded to the spot, and the river was so thickly covered
with boats, that it was no easy matter to find enough water uncovered
to walk upon." Of course the thing was a mere trick, and the Cockneys
had their disappointment for their pains. Then balloons were the
crotchet of the hour, and they also came from France, where they had
been brought to a certain degree of perfection, but where it was
soon found they were more positively dangerous than probably useful;
for in May 1784, "a royal _ordonnance_ forbade the construction or
sending up of 'any aërostatic machine,' without an express permission
from the king, on account of the various dangers attendant upon
them; intimating, however, that this precaution was not intended
to let the 'sublime discovery' fall into neglect, but only to
confine the experiments to the direction of intelligent persons."
In England, the fancy for them increased, and was the subject of
various caricatures and pamphlets, until the death of a couple of
Frenchmen, thrown to the earth from an immense height, cooled the
soaring courage of the aëronauts. A more destructive and permanent
folly was the passion for gambling, which, in spite of the attacks of
the press, of grave censure and cutting satire, pervaded all ranks
of society. There was a perfect fury for faro; and ladies of high
fashion, and of aristocratic name, thought it not beneath them to
convert their houses into hells. Three of these sporting dames, who
had made themselves a name as keepers of banks, to which they enticed
young men of fortune, were popularly known as "Faro's daughters."
Lord Kenyon, when deciding on a gambling case, pledged himself, in
a moment of virtuous indignation, to sentence _the first ladies in
the land_ to the pillory, should they be brought before him for a
similar offence. Not long afterwards, several titled gamblers were
actually arraigned at his tribunal, but he forgot his threat, and
let them off with a fine. The hint, however, was enough for Gillray,
then in his glory, and for his brothers of the comic brush, and the
moral exposure and castigation which 'Faro's daughters' endured at
the hands of the caricaturists, can have been hardly less stinging
and annoying than actual exposure to the hooting and pelting of the
mob. General demoralisation, the natural consequence of gambling,
characterised this period. Men and women, ruined at the board of
green cloth, recruited their finances as best they might; and when no
other resource remained, the latter bartered their reputation, and
the former took to the road. Those were the palmy days of highway
robbery. "We are in a state of war at home that is shocking," writes
Horace Walpole in 1782. "I mean from the enormous profusion of
housebreakers, highwaymen, and footpads; and, what is worse, from
the savage barbarities of the two latter, who commit the most wanton
cruelties. The grievance is so crying, that one dares not stir out
after dinner but well armed. If one goes abroad to dinner, you would
think he was going to the relief of Gibraltar." Sixty-two years ago,
in January 1786, "the mail was stopped in Pall Mall, close to the
palace, and deliberately pillaged, at so early an hour as a quarter
past eight in the evening."

After having for some years drawn their principal themes for
satire from the social follies and political dissensions of their
countrymen, the English caricaturists and song-writers found
"fresh fields and pastures new" in foreign menaces and threatened
invasion. In their usual presumptuous tone, French newspapers and
proclamations spoke of the conquest of England by the conqueror of
Italy, as of a project whose realisation admitted not the smallest
doubt. This country had not then that confidence of invincibility
which she gathered from subsequent victories in the field; and the
positive assertions of France, that she had but to throw an army
on the English coast to secure prompt and powerful co-operation
from the Jacobin party, caused considerable alarm in the country.
To kindle true patriotism, and raise the courage of the nation,
recourse was had to loyal songs, and anti-French caricatures. The
anti-Jacobin lent efficient aid, and Gillray put his shoulder to
the wheel. The periodical and the artist were a host in themselves.
Clever verses, and pointed caricatures, followed each other in quick
succession. Soon Buonaparte betook himself to Egypt, the victory of
the Nile spread rejoicing through the land, and caricatures caught
the exultation of the hour. John Bull was represented at dinner,
forking French frigates down his capacious gullet, and supplied
with the provender, as fast as he could devour it, by Nelson and
other nautical cooks. Buonaparte, stripped to the waist, with all
enormous cocked-hat on his head, and the claret flowing freely from
his nose, receives fistic punishment at the hands of Jack Tar. The
suppression of the Irish rebellion of '98, and the death of General
Hoche, who had replaced Buonaparte as the threatened invader of the
British Isles, confirmed the feeling of security our naval triumphs
had inspired. The Peace of Amiens set the wags of the pencil on a
new tack, and Monsieur François was represented as imprinting "The
first Kiss these Ten Years" on the lips of burly, blushing Britannia,
who, whilst accepting the salute, hints a doubt of her admirer's
sincerity. The doubt was justified by the rupture that speedily
followed. The camp of Boulogne was formed; the French army were
reminded of the pleasant pastime, in the shape of rape and robbery,
that awaited them in the island famed for wealth and beauty. On
this side the Channel nothing was left undone that might increase
English contempt and hatred for the blustering bullies upon the
other. Individuals and associations printed and disseminated "loyal
tracts," as they were called. "Every kind of wit and humour was
brought into play to enliven these sallies of patriotism; sometimes
they came forth in the shape of national playbills, sometimes they
were coarse and laughable dialogues between the Corsican and John
Bull." Libels on Buonaparte, burlesques on his acts, parodies of his
bulletins, accounts of the atrocities of his armies, were daily put
forth, mingled with countless songs and tracts of encouragement and
defiance. Some of these were spirited, but generally the substance
and intention were better than the form--at least so they now
appear to us, who read them without the additional savour imparted
by the appropriateness of their time of production. Gillray keeps
better, and one still must smile at his John Bull, standing in
mid-Channel with trousers tucked up to his thighs, offering a fair
fight to his meagre enemy, who contemplates him with a visage of
grim dismay from above the triple batteries of the French coast. It
is said that Buonaparte was much annoyed by personalities levelled
at himself and his family, in some of the caricatures of 1803. They
were often very coarse, and conveyed unhandsome imputations on the
conduct of his female relatives; some of whom--rather flighty dames,
if all tales be true--gave by their conduct plausible grounds for
such attacks. Napoleon himself was represented in every odious and
contemptible shape that could be devised,--as a butcher, a pigmy,
an ogre, and even as a _fiddle_, transformed by an abominable pun
into a _base villain_, upon which John Bull, a complacent smile upon
his honest face, plays with sword instead of bow. This was after
Maida, when the British army had begun to share the high esteem in
which repeated victories had long caused our fleets to be held.
A droll caricature, by Woodward, represents Napoleon abusing his
master-shipwright for not keeping him better supplied with ships;
whilst the unfortunate constructor, with hair on end, and a shrug
to his ears, excuses himself upon the ground that, as fast as he
builds, the English capture. It is to be remarked that hardly any of
the caricatures of Napoleon attempt a likeness of him. They usually
represent him as a lantern-jawed, disconsolate-looking wretch, with
a prodigious cocked-hat and plume of feathers--that is to say, quite
the contrary, both in head and head-dress, of what he really was.
Both Gillray and his successors seem to have preferred sketching him
as the received personification of a Frenchman, to giving a burlesque
portrait or real caricature of the man. We trace this peculiarity,
in many instances, up to the year 1814, when George Cruikshank, in
depicting a Cossack "snuffing out Boney," (an allusion to French
disasters in Russia), still represents the then plump Emperor as a
lean, long-chinned scarecrow, with sash and feathers. Rowlandson
does nearly the same thing, in his vulgar print of Napoleon's
reception in the Island of Elba; and the only caricature reproduced
by Mr Fairholt, in which is preserved the general character of the
Emperor's head, is an anonymous one, where the head is placed on a
dog's shoulders, and "Blucher the Brave," by a rough grasp on the
nape of the quadruped's neck, extracts "the groan of abdication
from the Corsican Bloodhound." Probably the classic regularity of
Napoleon's countenance discouraged the caricaturists from attempting
his likeness. They were deterred by the difficulty of burlesquing a
face whose grave expression and perfect proportion gave no hold to
ridicule, and made it pretty certain that the general resemblance
would be sacrificed to the exaggeration of even a single feature.

FOOTNOTE:

[1] _England under the House of Hanover; its History and Condition
during the reigns of the three Georges, illustrated from the
Caricatures and Satires of the day._ By THOMAS WRIGHT, Esq.,
M.A.F.S.A. &c. With numerous illustrations, executed by F. W.
FAIRHOLT, F.S.A. In two volumes. London: 1848.



A PARCEL FROM PARIS.


It is some time since we had a gossip about French literature and
_littérateurs_. The fact is, that, since the blessed days of February
drove crestfallen monarchy from France, and began the pleasant state
of things under which that country has since so notably flourished,
literature has been at a complete stand-still in the land beyond the
Channel. We refer especially to the light and amusing class of books
it has been our habit occasionally to notice and extract from. With
these the revolution has played the very mischief. Feuilletons have
made way for bulletins of barricade contests, for reports of state
trials, for the new dictator's edicts and proclamations. The rush
at the _Cabinets de Lecture_ has been for lists of genuine killed
and wounded, not for imaginary massacres, by M. Dumas' heroes, of
hosts of refractory plebeians, or for the full and particular account
of the gallant defence of Bussy d'Amboise, against a quarter of a
hundred hired assassins--all picked men-at-arms, and all setting on
him at once, but of whom, nevertheless, he slays twenty-four, and
only by the twenty-fifth is slain. And, by the bye, what pity it is
that a few of our friend Alexander's redoubted swordsmen could not
have been summoned from their laurel-shaded repose in Père la Chaise,
to avert the recent catastrophe of the house of Orleans. Just a brace
and a half of his king-making _mousquetaires_ would have done the
trick in a trice. Rumour certainly says that, in February last, a
tall dark-complexioned gentleman, with a bran-new African _Kepi_ on
his martial brow, a foil, freshly unbuttoned, in his strong right
hand, and a yell of liberty upon his massive lips, was seen to head
a furious assault upon the Tuileries, at a time when that palace was
undefended. Ill-natured tongues have asserted that this adventurous
forlorn-hope leader was no other than the author of _Monte Christo_;
but of this we credit not a syllable. It is notorious that M. Dumas
is under the deepest obligations to the ex-king of the French, to
whose kind and efficacious patronage (when Duke of Orleans) his first
very sudden, very brilliant, and not altogether deserved success
as a dramatist was mainly due. Equally well known is it that the
popular writer was the favoured and intimate associate of two of
Louis Philippe's sons--the Dukes of Orleans and Montpensier. Take,
in conjunction with these facts, M. Dumas' established reputation
for steady consistency, gravity, and gratitude, and of course
it is impossible to believe that he ever acted so basely to his
benefactors. But, even admitting republican predilections on his
part, his love of liberty would assuredly prevent his constraining
those well-known stanch supporters of the right divine, Messrs Athos,
Artagnan, and Company, who, if set down in Paris in 1848, would have
played the very deuce with the young republic. The giant Porthos
would have stridden along the boulevards, kicking over the barricades
as easily as he raised, single-handed, the stone which six of the
degenerate inhabitants of Bellisle were unable to lift, (_Vide "Le
Vicomte de Bragelonne;"_) whilst the astute Gascon Artagnan would
have packed General Cavaignac in a magnified _bonbon_-box, with
air-holes in the lid, and _Copahine-Mège_ or _Chocolat-Cuillier_ on
the label; and would have conveyed him on board a fishing smack,
there detaining him till he pledged his honour that the king should
have his own again. And, upon the whole, and whatever budding honours
and civic crowns M. Dumas may anticipate under the genial reign of
republicanism, it would have been more to his present interest to
have stuck to monarchy, and led his legions to its rescue. Under the
new regime his occupation is gone; his literary merchandise vainly
seeks a market. Paris, engrossed by domestic broils and political
discussions, by its anarchy, its misery, and its hunger--no longer
cares for the fabulous exploits of Gascon paladins, and of privates
in the Guards, who make thrones to totter, and armies to fly, by
the prowess of their single arm. But M. Dumas is not disheartened.
When the drama languishes, and the feuilleton grows unproductive,
he falls back upon the _Premier-Paris_. When readers are scarce for
twelve-volume romances, and plays in ten acts and thirty _tableaux_
cease to draw, he starts upon a fresh tack--proposes enlightening
the public on politics, regenerating France through the leaders of
a newspaper. We were greatly amused by his advertisement of the
journal, intended to act as lantern to this shining light of the
new political day. "Our task is easy"--these were its concluding
words--"_Dieu dicte, nous écrivons!_" Setting aside the slight
profanity of this startling assertion, one cannot but admire the
characteristic modesty of the self-conferred secretaryship. We are
assured, however, that M. Dumas has been found far less able and
attractive at the head of the column, than he was in his old place at
the foot of the page.

The disjointed times being decidedly unfavourable to _belles
lettres_, we were scarcely surprised at the first non-arrival of
the monthly parcel, in which our punctual Paris agent is wont to
forward us the literary novelties of the preceding thirty days.
On a second and a third omission, we grew uneasy, and suspected
the Red Republicans of abstracting our packages _in transitu_; but
absolved the democrats on receipt of advice, that if the books did
not arrive, it was because they were not sent; and that, if they
were not sent, it was because there were none, or as good as none,
to send. At last a case has reached us--half the usual size, but
containing, nevertheless, the French literature of the entire summer.
A poor display indeed! The pens of the novelists have shrivelled in
their grasp; their plump goose-quills have dwindled into emaciated
tooth-picks. Instead of the exuberant eight-volume romance, with
promise of continuation, we have single volumes, meagre tales,
that seem nipped in the bad, blighted by the breath of revolution.
No author, not already involved in one of those tremendous series
with which French writers have lately abused the public patience,
now cares to exceed a volume or two. M. Sue, having got into the
middle of the seven capital sins, is fain to flounder on through
the ocean of iniquity; but his pen flags, evidently affected by
the discouraging influence of the times. M. Dumas has brought out
the final volume of "_Les Quarante Cinq_," a romance which we may
observe, _en passant_, is a scandalous specimen of what the French
call _faire la ligne_--doing the line, writing against paper, upon
the Vauxhall principle of making the smallest possible substance
cover the utmost possible surface. It is pity to see a man of
remarkable talent, which M. Dumas really is, thus degrading himself
into a mere mercantile speculator, lumbering his books with pages
upon pages of useless and meaningless dialogue--if dialogue that is
to be called, of which the following stuff is a specimen:--

"You are the Chevalier d'Artagnan."

"Then let me pass."

"Useless!"

"Why useless?"

"Because his Eminence is not at home."

"What! His Eminence not at home! Where is he then?"

"Gone."

"Gone?"

"Yes."

"Where?" &c., &c.

This is taken at random, from the volume last published of the
_Vicomte de Bragelonne_, in which romance the marvellous and
Crichtonian musketeers, brought forward again, when hard upon
threescore, show less sign of suffering from the march of years
than does the narrative of their adventures from its unconscionable
protraction. Much more than half the book is made up of such
wearisome conferences as that above-cited, where the interlocutors
carry on a sort of cut-and-thrust conversation, with an economy
of words explicable by the fact that in a French feuilleton, or
volume, one word of dialogue makes a line, as well as ten. With the
assistance of his secretary, M. Maquet, and of his son, Alexander
the Younger, M. Dumas gets through a prodigious amount of this sort
of trash, at once productive to his pocket and damaging to his
reputation; and then, when he finds publishers beginning to grumble,
and the public detecting the device, and rejecting the windy repast,
he applies himself in earnest, and produces something exceedingly
good, of which he is quite capable, if once he gets the spur. It
is to the necessity of thus occasionally redeeming his reputation,
that we are indebted for the few really praiseworthy romances he
has written--for the _Chevalier d'Harmental_, for the earlier
portion of the _Mousquetaires_, and for his masterpiece, _Le Comte
de Monte Christo_. His enemies and libellers have asserted, that
the first-named of these books was written by M. Maquet, and only
fathered by Dumas; but the assertion is absurd, and is belied by the
book itself, replete with that vivid animation which characterises
whatever Alexander writes. Moreover, the man who could write such a
novel would have no need to purchase the name of M. Dumas. He would
not lack a publisher, and his reputation would soon be made. We
believe the fact to be, that Maquet is a sort of industrious drudge,
employed by Dumas to rummage chronicles, and to collate and write
down historical incidents and facts, for his employer to distort
and expand into romances. For, as an historical romance writer, M.
Dumas is utterly without a conscience. By him characters and events
are twisted and turned as best suits his convenience. "I have twenty
years' work before me," he is reported to have said, "to illustrate
French history." Heaven knows what sort of an illustrator he is!
We would advise no one to take their notions of French historical
personages from M. Dumas' novels, or from his history either--for he
writes history also, at times, and the only doubt is, which is the
greatest fiction, his history or his romance. But for the titles, it
were not always easy to distinguish between them. It were unfair,
however, whilst quizzing his absurdities, to lose sight of his
merits. These are numerous and remarkable. His spirit and vivacity
of style are extraordinary; and we can call to mind no living writer
superior to him for invention. _Monte Christo_ is his masterpiece. It
is indeed a very striking and amusing book. With defects that forbid
our calling it a first-rate romance of its class, it is yet far more
entertaining than many that claim and obtain the title. The readers
of the _Journal des Debats_ well remember the eagerness with which
each successive _feuilleton_ was looked for, during its appearance
in that paper. We ourselves abominate the _feuilleton_ system, by
which one is a year or two reading a book, imbibing it by daily
crumbs, like the lady who eats her pillau with a bodkin. We waited
till the work was complete, and then read it off the reel,--not at a
sitting, certainly, considering the length, but early and late, in
bed and at board. And being somewhat fastidious in matter of novels,
it is evident _Monte Christo_ must have great attractions thus to
carry us at a canter through its interminable series of volumes. Its
chief fault is the usual one of its author--exaggeration. We are
sure M. Dumas is one of those persons who love to dream with their
eyes open--to build themselves palaces in fairyland, to arrange
gardens after the fashion of that of Eden, to furnish the most
preterperfect of apartments with the most fabulous of furniture, to
hang diamonds on their trees, and a roc's egg in their drawing-room.
His air-constructed castles find a site in the pages of his romances.
The right way to read them is to forget as fast as possible the
improbabilities and impossibilities. The supernatural being out
of vogue, he does not give to Edmund Dantes the lamp of Aladdin,
but (which is quite equivalent) a few double handfuls of precious
stones, whereof the smallest specimen is caught at by a Jew for a
thousand pounds; whilst one of the largest, hollowed out, forms a
convenient receptacle for a score of pills, as big as peas, which it
is the Count's custom to carry about with him. With the aid of this
incalculable wealth, Dantes pursues his grand scheme of revenge upon
the persons to whom he is indebted for fourteen years' undeserved
imprisonment in the dungeons of the Chateau d'If. Gold being the
universal key, all doors fly open before him: nothing is impossible
to the man who scatters millions upon the path leading to the goal of
his desires. Take the treasure for granted, and still there is much
exaggeration to get over; but there are also many truthful touches,
many finely-drawn characters. How exquisitely tender are some of the
scenes between the paralytic and his granddaughter; how capital and
characteristic the interview between the old Italian gambler and
the young French thief, when they are paid by the Count to consider
each other as father and son! In this romance there is none of the
make-weight dialogue so lavishly interpolated in most of the same
author's works. In style, too, and description, M. Dumas here rises
above his average. His style, always lively and piquant, is usually
loose, unpolished, and defaced by conventionalisms the Academy would
hardly sanction. In _Monte Christo_ he has evidently taken pains to
do well, and the result is the best written book he has yet produced.

But we lose sight of our parcel, as yet but half unpacked. Here
is a volume of the _Député d'Arcis_, (another of the continuation
family,) heavy stuff, seemingly, by Balzac; and this brings us to
the end of the continuations. With these exceptions, the French
writers who have not altogether left off writing, have at least
kept within circumscribed limits. Here we have a volume from M.
Méry of Marseilles, a clever, careless writer, not much known in
England; another by the authoress of _Consuelo_; two more from M.
Alphonse Karr; a couple from that old sinner, Paul de Kock, who
is not often so concise, having superadded, of late years, to his
other transgressions the crime of long-windedness; a brief Sicilian
sketch from M. Paul de Musset. We turn aside a heap of political
matter, of no great merit or value; a few pamphlets, of some talent,
but fugitive interest, by Girardin and others; a ream of portraits
and caricatures; a few more novels whose authors' names or whose
first pages condemn them; _Mourir pour la Patrie_, and some other
revolutionary staves, bad music and worse words, and the box is
empty. We sit down to peruse the little we have selected as worth
perusal from the pile of printed paper. _La Famille Alain_, by Karr,
is the first thing that comes to hand. We have read the greater
part of it already, in the French periodical in which it first
appeared. M. Karr is rather a favourite of ours. There are many good
points about his novels, although he is, perhaps, less popular as a
novelist than as the writer of a small monthly satirical pamphlet,
_Les Guèpes_, The Wasps, which has existed for several years, with
varying, but, upon the whole, with very great success. M. Karr's
wit is of a peculiar order, approaching more nearly to _humour_
than French wit generally does. There is an odd sort of dryness and
fantastic _naïveté_ in some of his drolleries, quite distinct from
what we are accustomed to in the comic writings of his countrymen.
With this the German origin to be inferred from his name may have
some connexion. There is also a Germanic vagueness and dreaminess in
some of his books, although their scene is usually on French ground,
frequently on the coast of Brittany, a country M. Karr evidently well
knows and loves. One of his great recommendations is the general
propriety of his writings. Of most of them, the tone and tendency
are alike unexceptionable, and some are mere "simple stories," which
the most fastidious papas--who deny that any good thing can proceed
from a French press, and look upon the yellow paper cover with
"Paris" at its foot as the ineradicable mark of the beast, the moral
quarantine flag, betokening uncleanness which no amount of lazaretto
can purge or purify--might with safe conscience place in the hands
of their blooming artless sixteen-year-old daughters. The fact is,
that people _will_ read French novels--so long as they are not
audaciously indecent, immoral, or irreligious--because the present
race of French novelists are far cleverer and more amusing than their
English brethren. And although some French novels are offensive and
abominable, it is not fair to include all in the black list, or to
deny that a great improvement has taken place since the period (the
early years of the reign of the first and last King of the French)
when the Paris press was clogged with indecency and infidelity. We
should be very sorry to put Mrs George Sand's works into the hands of
any young woman; we would insult no woman, of any age, by commending
to her notice the obscene buffoonery of De Kock; but neither would
we condemn the whole flock for a sprinkling of scabby sheep. There
are many French writers of a very different stamp from the two just
named; and M. Karr is one of the better sort. The tale now before
us is a Norman story, possessing better plot and incident than
many of its predecessors; for in these respects, this author--from
indolence, we suspect--is often rather deficient. We need hardly
tell our readers that the Norman is noted for his cunning, and for
his litigious propensities, as the Gascon is for his boasting and
vanity, the Lorrainer for his stolidity, &c., &c. In _La Famille
Alain_, the characteristics of the province, and the casualties
of the peasant's and fisherman's life, are cleverly illustrated.
Tranquille Alain, surnamed Risquetout, from certain bold feats of his
earlier years, lives by the seaside on the produce of his nets. His
family consists of his wife Pélagie, his sons and daughter, Cæsar,
Onesimus, and Berenice, and of his foster-daughter Pulchérie. With
respect to these magnificent names, M. Karr thinks it necessary to
offer some explanation. "I am not their inventor," he says, "and they
are very common in Normandy. There is not a village that has not its
Berenices, its Artemesias, its Cleopatras. I know not whence the
inhabitants originally took these names. Perhaps they were given by
dames of high degree, who took them from Mademoiselle de Scudery's
romances, to bestow them on their rustic god-children, and they have
since remained traditional in the country." The book opens with the
christening of a new fishing-boat, to build which Tranquille Alain
has borrowed a hundred crowns of his cousin Eloi, miller and usurer.
In France, as elsewhere, and especially in Normandy, millers have a
roguish reputation. The loan is to be repaid, part at the beginning
and part at the end of the fishing season, with twenty crowns
interest. But the season sets in stormy and unfavourable; the fish
shun the coast; and at the date appointed for the first payment, the
debtor is unprepared with either principal or interest. At last the
wind lulls, and the angry waves subside into a long sullen swell.
Risquetout and his sons put to sea.

"Towards the close of day, as the boats reappeared on the horizon,
Eloi Alain came down from Beuzeval, and waited their arrival upon the
beach. They had taken a few whitings. Onesimus was proud, because
almost all the fish had been caught on his line.

"Risquetout, who had started that morning rather prematurely, without
waiting till the fine weather had thoroughly set in, had a feeling of
fear and embarrassment at sight of the miller.

"'Have you caught any thing?' said Eloi.

"'A few whitings. Will you come, and eat some with us?'

"Eloi made no answer; but when the lines and fish had been taken out
of the boat, and the boat had been washed and hauled up upon the
shore, he followed the three fishers to their home. Pélagie also felt
uneasy at sight of Eloi; she asked him, as Tranquille had done, if he
would eat a whiting, to which he replied,--

"'Not to refuse you.'

"Then, as they changed the fish from one basket to another, he took
up two, and kept them a long time in his hands, repeating, 'Fine
whitings these, very fine whitings!' until Pélagie said:--

"'You shall take them home with you, cousin.'

"Eloi answered nothing; they sat down to dinner; he found the cider
not very good, which did not prevent his drinking a great deal of it.

"'Well, Tranquille,' said he, at last, 'it is to-day you are to pay
me the hundred and twenty crowns I lent you.'

"Neither the intrepid Risquetout, nor any of his family, dared to
observe that the loan was not of one hundred and twenty crowns, but
only of one hundred crowns, for which a hundred and twenty were to be
paid back.

"'True,' said Tranquille Alain, 'true; but the same reason which
prevented my paying you the other day, prevents me to-day; to-day
only have we been able to put to sea.

"'I am sadly inconvenienced for these hundred and twenty crowns I
lent you, cousin. I had reckoned on them to employ in an affair--I
had taken them from a sum I had in reserve--and here I am, distressed
for want of them.'

"'I am sorrier for it than you are, cousin, but a little patience and
all will go well.'

"Tranquille did not dare say that Eloi could not be distressed for
the hundred and twenty crowns, their agreement having been, that he
should repay only a portion at the beginning of the season, and the
remainder at its conclusion.

"'And when will you pay me?'

"'Well, cousin, at the end of the season.'

"'The two halves shall be paid together,' added Pélagie, bolder than
her husband.

"'It is to-day the money would be useful to me; I miss an affair on
which I should gain fifty crowns! It is very hard to have obliged
people, and to find one's-self in difficulty in consequence. I am so
much in want of money, Risquetout, that if you give me two hundred
francs, I will return you these two bills of sixty crowns each.'

"'You know very well I have no money, Eloi.'

"'Never mind, it shows you what sacrifices I would make to-day, to
receive what you owe me.'

"Again no one dared tell the miller that he was not very sincere when
he offered to sacrifice a hundred and sixty francs to obtain payment
of a sum which would enable him, he said, to gain a hundred and fifty.

"'What is to be done?' said he.

"'I wish I had the money, Eloi.'

"'You say then that you cannot pay, till Michaelmas, the hundred and
twenty crowns you should have paid to-day?'

"'That is to say, cousin,' cried Pélagie, always bolder or less
patient than her husband, 'that we should have given you half of it.'

"'Yes; but that half was due a fortnight ago; and, besides, I am in
such want of that half, that--See here, now, I offered just now to
give you back your bills for two hundred francs; well, pay me one,
and I return you both. There is nothing stingy or greedy in that
offer, I hope; I lent you a hundred and twenty crowns, and I cry
quits for sixty.'

"'Cousin, I repeat that I have no money, and besides, if I had sixty
crowns, I would give them you, which would not prevent my giving you
the sixty others later.'

"'It is sixty crowns that I lose on the affair I miss for want of
money.'

"'Pélagie longed to remind Eloi that the profit sacrificed had been
but fifty crowns a few minutes before, but she held her tongue.

"'I am no Turk,' continued the miller; 'I will renew your bills. Draw
one of a hundred and fifty crowns payable at Michaelmas.'

"The husband and wife exchanged a look. Pélagie spoke.

"'What, cousin! a hundred and fifty crowns! That makes, then, thirty
crowns interest from now till Michaelmas, and that on sixty crowns,
or rather on fifty, since only half the sum is due; and out of the
sixty crowns ten are for interest.'

"'I don't deny it. You think thirty crowns interest too much; well, I
offer sixty for the same time. Give me sixty crowns, and I return the
two bills, and thank you into the bargain, and you will have done me
famous service.'

"'Ah! cousin, I wish I had never borrowed this money of you!'

"'I am sure I wish you had not; I should not be pinched for it
to-day. And why am I? Because I won't get you into difficulties,
for I might give your two bills in payment for the affair I speak
of, and then you would be made to pay, or your boats would be sold;
but I prefer being the loser myself, for after all, cousin, we are
brothers' sons, and we must help one another in this world.'

"'Nevertheless, cousin, thirty crowns are a very high figure.'

"'Yes; and I should be quite content if you would give me sixty for
the hundred and twenty I lent you; but, Lord bless me! add nothing to
the bill, if you like--let me lose every thing.'

"'It is fair to add something, Eloi.'

"'Well, since you find thirty crowns too much, when I should be too
happy to give sixty, add nothing, or add thirty crowns.'

"Tranquille and his wife looked at each other.

"'I will do as you wish,' said Risquetout.

"'Observe,' said the miller, 'that it is not I who wish it. What I
wish, on the contrary, is to see my hundred and twenty crowns which
went out of my pocket, and to receive them without addition; what I
would gladly agree to is, to receive sixty, and make you a present of
the rest.'

"'Write out the bill; I will make my mark.'

"Eloi wrote; but, when about to set down the sum upon the stamp he
had brought with him, he checked himself.

"'Tranquille,' said he, 'the stamp is five sous; it is not fair I
should pay it. Give me five sous.'

"'There is not a sou in the house,' said Pélagie.

"'Then we will add it to the amount of the bill. Thus: At Michaelmas
I promise to pay to my cousin, Eloi Alain, the sum of four hundred
and fifty-one francs (one cannot put four hundred and fifty francs
and five sous, it would look so paltry,) which he has been so
obliging as to lend me in hard cash. Signed, Tranquille Alain. There,
put your mark, and you, Pélagie, put yours also.'

"The signatures given, Eloi returned the old bills with the air of a
benefactor conferring an immense favour.

"'This time, cousin,' said he, 'be punctual. I shall pay away your
bill to a miller at Cherbourg; and if you are not prepared to take
it up when due, he may not be so accommodating as I am; for, after
all, these four hundred and fifty-one francs would be very useful to
me, if I had them in my pocket instead of having lent them to you.
Four hundred and fifty-one francs are not to be picked up under every
hedge; it is not every day one finds a cousin willing to lend him
four hundred and fifty-one francs.'

"No one made any observation on this pretended loan of four hundred
and fifty-one francs.

"'Well, I must be off. I perhaps lost my temper a little, cousin,
but I am really in want of the money. You understand--when one has
reckoned on four hundred and fifty-one francs that one has lent--and
then not to receive a single copper, it is rather vexatious; but,
however, I will manage as I can. I am hasty at the moment, but I bear
no malice. It is all forgotten.'

"He then took up the two whitings which had been laid aside for him.
At the same time he took a third out of the basket, and placed it
beside one of his, comparing the two.

"'I think this is a finer one!' he said. And he weighed them, one in
each hand.

"'There is not much difference,' he observed.

"He changed them into the opposite hands, weighed them again, and
appeared sadly embarrassed, until his kinsman said to him:

"'Don't mind, cousin, take the three.'

"'Here, Onesimus,' said he, 'run a piece of string through their
gills.'

"Onesimus strung them on the end of a strong line. He was about to
cut the piece off, when Eloi checked him.

"'Bless me!' said the miller, 'how wasteful children are! He would
cut that capital new cord.'

"And he carried away the entire cord, with the three whitings at
the end of it, after having several times repeated his advice to
Risquetout to be punctual in the payment of his bill, and after
kissing Berenice, and saying,--

"'Good-bye, my dear children; I am delighted to have been of service
to you.'

"'Our cousin is a very hard and a very griping man,' said Pélagie.

"'God does not pay his labourers every night,' replied Tranquille,
lifting his woollen cap, 'but sooner or later he never forgets to
pay. Each man shall be recompensed according to his work.'"

This is by no means the sort of thing generally met with in
French romances of the present day. It is neither the back-slum
and bloody-murder style, nor the self-styled historical, nor the
social-subversive. It is just simple, natural, pleasant reading, free
from anything indecent or objectionable. We have taken this chapter
because it bears extraction well, not as the best in the book, still
less as the only good one. _La Famille Alain_ has a well-contrived
plot and well-managed incidents, contains some droll and quiet
caricature, and many touching and delicately-handled passages. The
correspondence between the young lady at the Paris boarding-school,
and the fisherman's daughter at Dive, and the sketches of the
company at the watering-place, are each excellent in their way.
The introduction of Madame du Mortal and her daughter, and of the
Viscount de Morgenstein, is rather foreign to the story, but affords
M. Karr opportunity of sketching characters by no means uncommon in
France, although little known in England. At this sort of delineation
he is the Gavarni of the pen.

"The truth is, that Madame du Mortal's existence had been tolerably
agitated. Eight years previously she had quitted M. du Mortal for the
society of an officer, who soon, touched by remorse, had left her
at full liberty to repair their mutual fault by returning to edify
the conjugal mansion by her repentance, and by the exercise of those
domestic virtues she had somewhat neglected. Madame du Mortal did
nothing of the sort; she knew how to create resources for herself.
Formerly, deceived and discouraged people fled to a convent, now they
fly to the feuilleton. When a woman finds herself, by misconduct and
scandal, excluded from society, she does not weep over her fault and
expiate it in a cloister; before long you see her name at the bottom
of a newspaper feuilleton, in which she demands the enfranchisement
of her sex. No great effort of invention was requisite for Madame du
Mortal to devise this resource. Her husband, M. du Mortal, a tall,
corpulent man, with a severe countenance and formidable mustaches,
had long furnished the article MODES to a widely-circulated
newspaper; and under the name of the Marchioness of M----, discoursed
weekly upon tucks and flounces, upon the length of gowns and the
size of bonnets, according to the instructions of milliners and
dressmakers, who paid him to give their names and addresses. Madame
du Mortal devoted herself to the same branch of literature, and
succeeded in seducing some of her husband's customers."

"The Viscount de Morgenstein was one of those illustrious pianists
whose talent has much less connexion with music than with sleight
of hand. M. de Morgenstein achieved only three notes a minute less
than M. Henry Herz; as he was young and worked hard, it was thought
he would overtake, and perhaps surpass that master. He had long
curling hair, affected a melancholy and despairing countenance, and
was considered to have something fatal in his gait. His mere aspect
betrayed the man overwhelmed by the burden of genius and by the
divine malediction."

The character of an old country gentleman, who has ruined himself
to marry his niece to a spendthrift count, is very well hit off.
Eloi Alain, who has a grudge against the poor old fellow, persecutes
him in every possible way; his aristocratic and ungrateful nephew
refuses him the pension agreed upon, and, to maintain appearances,
Monsieur Malais de Beuzeval is reduced to shifts worthy of Caleb
Balderstone. Although a _parvenu_, with vanity for the stimulus
of his stratagems, one cannot help feeling sorry for the weak but
kind-hearted old man, who shuffles on a livery coat, and puts a patch
over his eye, to inform visitors, through the wicket, that he himself
is not at home--his own servants having left him; who paints a blaze,
each alternate day, upon the face of his sole remaining horse, that
neighbours may credit the duplicity of his stud; and who illuminates
his drawing-room and jingles his piano in melancholy solitude, to
make the world believe M. de Beuzeval is receiving his friends. His
manoeuvres to procure a supply of forage, and his ingenuity in
dissipating the astonishment of its vender, who cannot comprehend
that the master of broad pastures should purchase a load of hay, are
capitally drawn. Like every thing else, however, the hay comes to an
end, and, at the same time with the horse, the master runs short of
provender. Only the four-legged animal has resources the biped does
not possess.

"M. de Malais was again compelled to lead out his horse Pyramus
during the night, to graze the neighbours' lucerne. One morning
the inhabitants of the village of Beuzeval heard the castle-bell
announce, as usual, the breakfast. M. de Beuzeval walked into the
breakfast room, but found nothing to eat. He nibbled a stale crust
and set out for Caen, whence he always brought back a little money,
his journeys thither being for the purpose of disposing of some
relic of his departed splendour. But when he had ridden a league he
remembered it was Sunday; the man he had to see would not be at his
shop, and he must wait till the next day. He returned to Beuzeval,
and thence rode down to Dive. Berenice, who was lace-making at her
door, made him a grateful curtsey, and he stopped to exchange a few
words with her. Pélagie, who was preparing dinner, inquired after
Pulchérie.

"'Madame la Comtesse de Morville is well,' he replied; 'I heard from
her the other day. My nephew, Count de Morville, has promised to
bring the countess to see me this summer.'

"Onesimus and his father were close to shore. Pélagie begged M. de
Beuzeval's permission to look to their dinner, as they were obliged
to put to sea again as soon as they had eaten it. M. Malais got off
his horse and entered the house.

"'Your soup smells deliciously,' said he; 'it is cabbage soup.'

"'A soup you seldom see, M. de Beuzeval.'

"'Not for want of asking for it. I am passionately fond of cabbage
soup, but they never will make it at my house.'

"'I daresay not. It is not a soup for gentlefolk.'

"'Yours smells excellent, Pélagie; but you were always a good cook.'

"'Ah, sir! there is one thing that helps me to make good dinners for
our men!'

"'What is that, Pélagie?'

"'A good appetite. They put to sea last night, and here they come,
tired, wet, dying of hunger: all that is spice for a plain meal.'

"The fishermen entered.

"'Come along!' cried M. Malais, 'you have a famous soup waiting for
you. Upon my word, it smells too good; I must taste it. Pélagie, give
me a plate; I will eat a few spoonsful with you. Certainly, it is
but a short time since I took my breakfast--what people call a good
breakfast--but without appetite, without pleasure.'

"'Indeed! M. Malais, you will do us the honour of tasting our soup?'

"And Pélagie hastened to put a clean cloth upon the table. Berenice
fetched a pot of cider. Onesimus _moored_ the horse in the shade;
then they all sat down, taking care to give the best place to M.
Malais, who eagerly devoured a plateful of soup."

We refer to the book itself those who would know how the poor old
gentleman made a second fierce assault on the tureen, and an equally
determined one on the bacon and greens; to what expedients he was
subsequently reduced; how it fared with the Countess Pulchérie and
her scapegrace husband, and what were the struggles, sufferings, and
ultimate rewards, of the courageous and simple-hearted Alains. The
book may safely be recommended to all readers. This is more than we
can say for the next that comes to hand--_Un Mariage de Paris_ by
Méry. This we should pitch into the rubbish-basket after reading the
first two chapters, did it not serve to illustrate what we have often
noted--the profound and barbarous ignorance of French literary men
on the subject of England and the English. Were this confined to the
smaller fry, the inferior herd of _Trans-canalic_ scribblers, one
would not be surprised. It is nothing wonderful that such gentlemen
as M. Paul Feval and poor blind Jacques Arago, should take _le gin_
and _le boxe_ to be the Alpha and Omega of English propensities and
manners, and should proceed upon that presumption in romances of
such distinguished merit as _Les Mystères de Londres_ and _Zambala
l'Indien_. But M. Méry is a man of letters esteemed amongst his
fellows--a hasty and slovenly writer, certainly, but possessing wit,
and tact, and style, when he chooses to employ them; and having,
moreover, he himself assures us, in the pages of the singular
production now under dissection, been all through England--although
this we apprehend he effected by means of express trains, without
stop or stay, from Folkestone to Berwick-upon-Tweed and back again.
Even this much acquaintance with the British Isles is denied to many
of his contemporaries, who evidently derive their notions of English
habits and customs from the frequenters of the English taverns about
the Places Favart and Madeleine at Paris. M. Méry is above this.
He draws entirely upon his imagination for the manners, morals,
and topography of the country in which his scene is laid. He has
got a few names of places, which he jumbles together in the most
diverting manner. His hero, Cyprian de Mayran, a Paris exquisite of
the first water, saddened by a domestic calamity, comes to London
in quest of dissipation and oblivion. He has some acquaintances
there, dating from a previous visit, and amongst them is the popular
singer Sidora W----, a lady, we are told, "whose talent would have
been very contestable at Paris, but was venerated in London, the
city of universal toleration. When, in Norma, or Fidelio, she kept
only tolerably near to the intentions of the composers, changing
their notes into false coin, a phalanx of admirers rose like one
man, and a triple round of applause rent thirty pair of yellow
gloves. The name of Sidora W---- had _great attraction_, (the italics
are M. Méry's,) and when displayed on gigantic placards, before
_Mansion-house_, or _Post-office_, as well as on the modest gray
circulars of the grocers, at night whole squadrons of noble equipages
were seen manoeuvring between _Long Acre_ and the peristyle of
_Covent Garden_, and the theatre of _Drury Lane_ was invaded." The
nightingale who thus, in 1845, filled to suffocation the walls of
Drury, (a fact Mr Bunn may have difficulty to remember,) had a rural
retreat at Highgate, where she received a motley company. "The
garden of reception was like a vast flower-basket inhabited by a
woman, and surrounded by a dark fringe of mute adorers. There were
all the faces of the English universe: retired Calcutta nabobs;
ex-governors of unknown Archipelagos; colonels whose defunct wives
were Malabar widows, snatched from the funeral pile of their
Indian spouses; admirals bronzed by twenty cruises under the
equator; nephews of Tippoo Saib; disgraced ministers from Lahore;
ex-criminals from Botany Bay, who, having grown rich, were voted
virtuous; princes of Madagascar and Borneo; citizens of New Holland,
(naturalised Englishmen, notwithstanding their close affinity to
orang-outangs,)--in short all the human or inhuman types that Sem,
Cham, and Japhet invented on their escape from the Ark, to amuse
themselves a little after a year's diluvian captivity on the summit
of Mount Ararat. It is only in London such collections are to be met
with; and the foreign naturalist has the gratuitous enjoyment of
them. The capital of England is sometimes generous and disinterested
in its zoological exhibitions."

Amidst these dingy exotics, Cyprian, "with his Parisian elegance,
his fresh complexion, his hair of a vivid auburn, waving like that
of the Apollo Belvedere," appeared like a swan amongst gray geese;
and, seating himself between "two equinoctial beings not classed
by Buffon," he soon engrossed all the attention of the fascinating
Sidora, to the suppressed but violent indignation of Prince
Rajab-Nandy, and her other copper-coloured admirers. One of these
waylays the handsome Frenchman on his return home. Whilst passing
over _Highgate Bridge_, Cyprian's horse starts violently, and an
"equinoctial gentleman, with nothing _white_ about his whole person,
except a pair of _yellow_ gloves, (a Gallo-Irishism,) springs from
amongst the _brushwood_, and plants himself in the middle of the
bridge, like a satyr in the poem of Ramaiana." A duel is arranged, to
take place at _Cricklewood Cottage_, and Cyprian gallops into London
by _Tottenham-Road_. Having no male acquaintances in London, except
two sobersided bankers, he is at a loss for seconds. Finally he
prevails on two of the opera chorus, in consideration of a new coat
and a sovereign, to accompany him to the field of danger; and, after
duly gloving and dressing them in _Saint-Martin-Court_, he packs them
in a hackney-coach and starts for _Cricklewood_, which we now learn
is on the summit of the _mountain of Hamstead_. "There, in a pavilion
decorated Chinese-fashion, three men of tropical physiognomy awaited
De Mayran...." Opposite the cottage there stretched out, to an
immense distance, over hill and over valley, a gloomy forest, which
served as dueling ground in the quarrelsome days of the Roundheads
and Cavaliers. In a level glade, bare of trees, the Anglo-Indians
paused. It was a wild and solitary place; nevertheless, here and
there, on the fir trees, were seen enormous electioneering placards,
bearing the words, "_Vote for Parker!_" This is rich, particularly if
we bear in mind that the author is perfectly serious, and devoutly
believes he is giving a very curious insight into the local usages
and characteristics of semi-civilised England. M. Méry's hero has
other adventures, equally true to life,--makes new acquaintances on
board a river-steamer; dines with them at _Sceptre and Crown_ at
Greenwich, and at _Star and Garter_ at Richmond; and falls violently
in love with Madame Katrina Lewing, a beautiful Englishwoman. M. Méry
makes merry on the river Thames, which he affects to believe rises in
the immediate vicinity of Richmond, and concerning whose origin and
exiguity he is very facetious. He also displays his acquaintance with
English literature by quoting "the great poet Pope's famous drinking
song in honour of the Thames, '_I you like, little stream!_'" Then
Cyprian prevails on Katrina to elope with him to _Port Natal_, (of
all places in the world!) and realises his fortune as a preparatory
measure; but Katrina proves a mere decoy-duck, and the amorous
Frenchman is stripped of his bank-notes, and left in the dead of
night in the middle of a field. In vain, at daybreak, does he seek
a shepherd to question, because, as M. Méry testifies, English
peasants do not inhabit the fields; shepherds are scarcely known in
the country; and the only one he, the aforesaid Méry, ever beheld,
during his extensive rambles in England, was a well-dressed young
gentleman, with gloves on, reading the _Morning Chronicle_ under a
tree. Then we have a thieves' orgie, where the liquors in demand are
claret and _absinthe_, nothing less--M. Méry not condescending to the
gin, so much abused by his contemporaries. And, finally, a murder
having been committed, its circumstances are investigated on the
spot, by a _Queen's proctor_, assisted by two policemen, a barmaid,
and a physician. We might multiply these literary curiosities; but
we have given enough to prove their author's intimate acquaintance
with the country about which he so agreeably writes. It is related
of M. Méry's friend Dumas, that he once resolved on a visit to
London, posted to Boulogne, steamed to London bridge, and reached St
Paul's, but there turned back, anathematising fog and sea-coal, and
never stopped till he found himself in the Chaussée d'Antin. Without
vouching for the truth of this tale, we must admit its probability
when told of the eccentric Alexander. Mr Méry's knowledge of this
country is just what he might have obtained by an hour's conversation
with his friend, upon the return of the latter from his journey to St
Paul's. But it is a crying sin of French writers, when they get upon
foreign ground, that, in their anxiety to give to their books a tinge
characteristic of the country, (_couleur locale_ they call it,) they
outstrip the limits assigned to them by their real knowledge of the
land and its inhabitants, and, meaning to be effective, become simply
ridiculous. And England is the country, of all others, whose ways
they apparently have most difficulty in rightly comprehending. On a
more southern soil they are less apt to run into absurdities, but sin
chiefly on the side of overcolouring. This may be alleged, although
to no violent extent, of a pleasant little romance by Paul de Musset,
_La Chèvre Jaune_--The Yellow Goat--intended as an illustration of
Sicilian life, particularly amongst the lower orders. The hero of
the tale is a precocious peasant boy, dwelling in the mountains with
his mother--a fierce old lady who owns a rifle, and detests the
Neapolitans. This boy, who herds goats, pets one of them, and trains
her to dance; by which means, and by his own good mien, he gains the
affections of a notary's daughter, whose papa, disapproving of the
attachment, has the peasant taken up on a false accusation of theft.
The boy escapes, turns bandit, and is accompanied in his forays and
ambuscades by his goat, who dances tarantellas on the mountain-tops,
and plays so many queer antics that she finally is held uncanny, and
becomes an object of fear and veneration to the ignorant Sicilians.
The story is prettily and pleasingly told, and is just the sort of
reading for a lazy man on a hot day. But, like most of the same
author's works, it wants vigour and originality. Paul de Musset is
a careful and a polished writer, and whatever he executes conveys
the idea of his having done his best; but his best is by no means
first-rate, and he labours under the great disadvantage of having a
younger brother a far cleverer fellow than himself. Nevertheless,
he is not to be spoken of disrespectfully. Slight as most of his
productions are, they are often graceful, and sometimes witty. One of
his recent _bluettes, Fleuranges_, although a thrice-told tale, is
distinguished by its charming vivacity and lightness.

We turn to _François le Champi_, by George Sand. We need hardly say
that Madame Dudevant is any thing but a favourite of ours. Whilst
admitting her genius and great literary talent, we deplore the evil
application of such rare powers,--the perversion of intellect so
high to purposes so mischievous. And we cannot agree with M. de
Lomenie, who, in his sketch of her life, asserts the pernicious
influence of her books to be greatly exaggerated, maintaining that
"the catastrophe of almost all of them contains a sort of morality
of misfortune which, to a certain extent, replaces any other."
This is a specious, but a very hollow argument. How many of those
who read George Sand's books have ability or inclination to strike
this nice balance between virtue and vice, and do not rather yield
themselves captives to the seductive eloquence with which the poetess
depicts and palliates the immorality of her characters! Her earlier
works gave her a fair claim to the title of the Muse of Adultery,
which some uncivil critic conferred on her. The personages were
invariably husband, wife, and lover, and the former was by no means
the best treated of the three. After a while she deviated from this
formula--employed other types, and produced occasionally books of
a less objectionable character; but, upon the whole, they are ill
to choose amongst. In the one before us there is no great harm,
but neither is there much to admire. As a literary production, it
is below the average of its predecessors. It is a story of peasant
life in western France. George Sand is taking a country walk one
evening, when her companion accuses her of making her rustics
speak the language of cities. She admits the charge, but urges, in
extenuation, that if she makes the dweller in the fields speak as
he really speaks, she must subjoin a translation for the civilised
reader. Her friend still insists on the possibility of elevating the
peasant dialect, without depriving it of its simplicity; of writing
a book in language that a peasant might employ, and which a Parisian
would understand without a single explanatory note. To professors and
amateurs of literary art, the discussion is of interest. Madame Sand
agrees to attempt the task; and takes for her subject a tale she has
heard related the previous evening, at a neighbouring farm-house.
She calls it _François le Champi_, but her critic cavils at the
very title. _Champi_, he says, is not French. George Sand quotes
Montaigne, to prove the contrary, although the dictionary declares
the word out of date. A _champi_ is a foundling, or child abandoned
in the fields, the derivation being from _champ_. And having thus
justified her hero's cognomen, she at once introduces him, at the
tender age of six years, boarded by the parish with Zabella, an
old woman who dwells in a hovel, and lives on the produce of a few
goats and fowls that find subsistence on the common. Madeleine
Blanchet, the pretty and very young wife of the miller of Cornouer,
takes compassion on the poor infant, and finds means to supply him,
unknown to her brutal husband and cross mother-in-law, with food and
raiment. The child grows into a comely lad, gentle, intelligent,
and right-hearted, and devotedly attached to Madeleine. He enters
the service of the miller, a rough dissipated fellow, given up to
the fascinations of a loose widow, Madame Sévère, a sort of rural
Delilah, who tries to seduce the handsome Champi, and, failing of
success, instils jealousy into the ear of the miller, who drives
François from his house. The young man finds occupation in a distant
village, and returns to the mill of Cornouer only when its master is
dead and Madeleine on a bed of sickness, to rescue his benefactress
from grasping creditors, by means of a sum of money his unknown
father has transmitted to him. George Sand makes every woman in
the book fall in love with the Champi; but he repulses all, save
one, and that one never dreams of loving him otherwise than as a
mother. At last one of the fair ones who would fain have gained his
heart, generously reveals to him, what he himself has difficulty in
believing, that he is in love with Madeleine Blanchet; and, further,
compassionating his timidity, undertakes to break the ice to the
pretty widow. It requires a talent like that of George Sand to give
an air of probability to all this. There are at most but a dozen
years' difference between Madeleine and the Champi, but the reader
has been so much accustomed to look upon them in the light of mother
and son, that he is somewhat startled on finding the boy of nineteen
enamoured of the woman of thirty. The love-passages, however, are
managed with Madame Sand's usual skill. As a picture of peasant life,
the book yields internal evidence of fidelity. The granddaughter
of the farmer-general of Berri has called up the memories of her
youthful days, passed in happy liberty upon the sunny banks of
Indre, and of the years of connubial discontent that went heavily
by in her husband's Aquitanian castle, when country rides and the
study of Nature's book were her chief resources. It was from this
castle of Nohant that the Baroness Dudevant fled, now nearly twenty
years ago, to commence the exceptional existence she since has led.
We may venture to take a page from her _Lettres d'un Voyageur_--a
page replete with that peculiar fascination which renders her pen so
powerful for good or evil.

"It grieves me not to grow old, it would grieve me much to grow
old alone; but I have not yet met the being with whom I would fain
have lived and died; or, if I have met him, I have not known how
to keep him. Hearken to a tale, and weep. There was a good artist,
called Watelet, who engraved in aquafortis better than any man of
his time. He loved Margaret Lecomte, and taught her to engrave as
well as himself. She left her husband, her wealth, and her country,
to live with Watelet. The world cursed them; then, as they were
poor and humble, it forgot them. Forty years afterwards there were
discovered, in the neighbourhood of Paris, in a little house called
_Moulin-Joli_, an old man who engraved in aquafortis, with an old
woman whom he called his _Meunière_, who also engraved at the same
table. The last plate they executed represented _Moulin-Joli_,
Margaret's house, with this device,--_Cur valle permutem Sabinâ
divitias operosiores!_ It hangs in my room, above a portrait whose
original no one here has seen. During one year, he who gave me that
portrait seated himself every night with me at a little table, and
lived on the same labour as myself. At daybreak we consulted each
other on our work, and we supped at the same table, talking of art,
of sentiment, and of the future. The future has broken its word to
us. Pray for me, O Margaret Lecomte!"

It is no secret that Madame Dudevant's Watelet was Jules Sandeau,
a French novelist of some ability, whose name still makes frequent
apparitions in the windows of circulating libraries, and at the foot
of newspaper feuilletons. Let us see what M. de Lomenie says of this
period of her life, and of her first appearance in the lists of
literature, in his brief but amusing memoir of this remarkable woman.

"Some time after the July revolution, there appeared a book entitled,
_Rose et Blanche_, or the Actress and the Nun. This book, which at
first passed unnoticed, fell by chance into a publisher's hands; he
read it, and, struck by the richness of certain descriptive passages,
and by the novelty of the situations, he inquired the author's
address. He was referred to a humble lodging-house, and, upon
applying there, was conducted to a small attic. There he saw a young
man writing at a little table, and a young woman painting flowers
by his side. These were Watelet and Margaret Lecomte. The publisher
spoke of the book, and it appeared that Margaret, who could write
books as well as Watelet, and even better, had written a good part,
and the best part, of this one; only, as books sold badly, or not at
all, she combined with her literary occupations the more lucrative
labour of a colourist. Encouraged by the publisher's approval, she
took from a drawer a manuscript written entirely by herself; the
publisher examined it, bought it, doubtless very cheap, and might
have paid a much higher price without making a bad speculation, for
it was the manuscript of _Indiana_. Soon after that, Margaret Lecomte
left Watelet, took half his name, called herself George Sand, and of
that half name has made herself one which shines to-day amongst the
greatest and most glorious."

Somebody has hazarded the sweeping assertion that the lover is the
_King_ of George Sand's novels. George Sand herself is the queen
of the class of _femmes incomprises_, the victim of a _mariage de
convenance_. The death of her grandmother left her, at the very
moment she quitted the convent where she had been educated, alone
and almost friendless. Ignorant of the world, she allowed herself
to be married to a rough old soldier, who led a prosaic existence
in a lonely country-house, had no notion of romance, sentiment, or
reverie, and made little allowance for them in others. The days that
ought to rank amongst the brightest memories of a woman's heart, the
early years of marriage, were a blank, or worse, to Aurora Dudevant,
and the bitterness thus amassed not unfrequently breaks forth in
her writings. It has been urged by her partisans, in extenuation of
her conjugal _faux pas_, that her husband was ignorant and brutal.
On the other hand, the idle have invented many of the delinquencies
imputed to her since her separation, just as they have told absurd
stories about her fantastical habits; and have made her out a sort
of literary Lola Montes, swaggering and smoking in man's attire,
and brandishing pistol and horsewhip with virile energy and effect.
The atmosphere of Paris is famous for its magnifying powers. Seen
through it, a grain of sand becomes a mountain, an eccentricity
is often distended into a vice. We lay this down as a rule, which
none who know and understand the French metropolis will dispute;
but we do not, at the same time, in any way take up the gloves
in defence of George Sand, with whom we have not the honour of a
personal acquaintance, and whose writings would certainly incline
us to somewhat ready credence of her irregularities and masculine
addictions. Now that she has attained the ripe age of forty-four,
we may suppose her sobered down a little. Before the February
revolution upset society, and drove the majority of the wealthy from
Paris, we happen to know she was a welcome guest in some of the
most fashionable and aristocratic drawing-rooms of the Faubourg St
Germain, where she was sought and cultivated for the charm of her
conversation. Since the revolution, there have been reports of her
presiding, or at least assisting, at democratic orgies; but these
rumours, as the newspapers say, "require confirmation." Since we
have, somehow or other, got led into this long gossip about the
lady, we will make another extract from the writer already quoted,
who tells an amusing story of his first introduction, obtained by
means of a misdelivered note, intended by the authoress of _Lelia_
for a man who cured smoky chimnies. A resemblance of name brought
the missive (a summons to a sick funnel) into the hands of the
biographer, who, puzzled at first, finally resolved to take advantage
of the mistake, to ascertain whether George Sand really did wear
boots and spurs, and smoke Virginian in a short pipe. He expected
something masculine and alarming, but in this respect was agreeably
disappointed.

"I saw before me a woman of short stature, of comfortable plumpness,
and of an aspect not at all _Dantesque_. She wore a dressing gown, in
form by no means unlike the wrapper which I, a commonplace mortal,
habitually wear; her fine hair, still perfectly black, whatever
evil tongues may say, was separated on a brow broad and smooth as a
mirror, and fell freely adown her cheeks, in the manner of Raphael;
a silk handkerchief was fastened loosely round her throat; her eyes,
to which some painters persist in imparting an exaggerated power of
expression, were remarkable, on the contrary, for their melancholy
softness; her voice was sweet, and not very strong; her mouth,
especially, was singularly graceful; and in her whole attitude
there was a striking character of simplicity, nobility, and calm.
In the ample temples and rich development of brow, Gall would have
discerned genius; in the frankness of her glance, in the outline of
her countenance, and in the features, correct but worn, Lavater would
have read, it seems to me, past suffering, a time-present somewhat
barren, an extreme propensity to enthusiasm, and consequently to
discouragement. Lavater might have read many other things, but he
certainly could have discovered neither insincerity, nor bitterness,
nor hatred, for there was not a trace of these on that sad but serene
physiognomy. The Lelia of my imagination vanished before the reality;
and it was simply a good, gentle, melancholy, intelligent, and
handsome face that I had before my eyes.

"Continuing my examination, I remarked with pleasure that the
_grande désolée_ had not yet completely renounced human vanities;
for, beneath the floating sleeves of her gown, at the junction of
the wrist with the white and delicate hand, I saw the glitter of
two little gold bracelets of exquisite workmanship. These feminine
trinkets, which became her much, greatly reassured me touching the
sombre tint, and the politico-philosophic exaltation, of certain of
George Sand's recent writings. One of the hands that thus caught
my attention concealed a _cigarito_, and concealed it badly, for a
treacherous little column of smoke ascended behind the back of the
prophetess."

Whether or no the interview thus described really took place, Madame
Dudevant should feel obliged to her biographer for his gentle
treatment and abstinence from exaggeration. On the strength of the
puff of smoke and the epicene dressing gown, many writers would
have sketched her hussar fashion, and hardly have let her off the
mustaches.

We are nearly at the end of our parcel, at least of such portion of
it as appears worthy a few words. Here are a brace of volumes by M.
de Kock, over which we are not likely long to linger. An esteemed
contributor to Maga expressed, a few years ago, his and our opinion
concerning this ancient dealer in dirt--namely, that he has no
deliberate intention to corrupt the morals or alarm the delicacy of
his readers, for that morals and delicacy are words of whose meaning
he has not the slightest conception. Paul, every Frenchman tells
you, is not read in France, save by milliners' girls and shopboys,
or by literary porters, who solace the leisure of their lodge by a
laugh over his pages, contraband amongst _gens comme il faut_. No
man is a prophet in his own land; and yet we have certain reasons
for believing that, even in France, Paul has more readers, avowed
or secret, than his countrymen admit. But at any rate, we can offer
the old gentleman (for M. Kock must be waxing venerable, and his
son has for some years been before the public as an author,) the
consolatory assurance, that in England he has numerous admirers,
to judge from the thumbed condition of a set of his works, which
caught our eye last summer on the shelves of a London circulating
library. To these amateurs of "Kockneyisms," whether genuine
cockneys, or naturalised cooks and barbers from Gaul, _Taquinet le
Bossu_ will be welcome. The hunchback, everybody knows, is a great
type in France. Who is not acquainted with the glorious _Mayeux_,
the swearing, fighting, love-making hero of a host of popular songs,
anecdotes, and caricatures, and of more than one romance--especially
of a four-volume one by Ricard, a deceased rival of De Kock?
Well, Paul--who, we must admit, is quite original, and disdains
imitation--has never meddled with the hackneyed veteran Mayeux, but
now creates a hunchback of his own. Taquinet is the dwarf clerk of
a notary, luxuriating in a wage of fifty pounds a-year, and a hunch
of the first magnitude. Pert as a magpie, mischievous and confiding,
devoted to the fair sex, and especially to its taller specimens, he
is a fine subject for Monsieur de Kock, who gets him into all manner
of queer scrapes, some not of the most refined description. The
French hunchback, we must observe, is a genus apart--quite different
from high-shouldered people of other countries. Far from being
susceptible on the score of his dorsal protuberance, he views it in
the light of an excellent joke, a benefaction of nature, placed upon
his spine for the diversion of himself and his fellow-men. The words
_bosse_ and _bossu_ (hunch and hunchback) have various idiomatic and
proverbial applications in France. To laugh like a _bossu_, implies
the _ne plus ultra_ of risibility: _se donner une bosse_--literally,
to give one's-self a hunch--is synonymous with sharing in a jovial
repast where much is eaten and more drunk. An excellent caricature in
the _Charivari_, some years ago, represented a group of half-starved
soldiers sitting round a fire of sticks at the foot of Atlas, and
picking a dromedary's scull--"_Pas moyen de se donner une bosse!_"
exclaims one of the dissatisfied conscripts. On twelve hundred francs
per annum, poor Taquinet often makes the same complaint; and, in
hopes of bettering his fortune, wanders into Germany on a matrimonial
venture, there to be jilted by Fraulein Carottsmann, for a strolling
player with one coat and three sets of buttons, who styles himself
Marquis, because he has been occasionally hissed in the line of
characters designated in France by that aristocratic denomination.
Then there is a general of Napoleon's army who cannot write his name;
and a buxom sutler and a handsome aide-de-camp, sundry grisettes, and
the other _dramatis personæ_ habitually to be met with in the pages
of Paul--the whole set forth in indifferent French, and garnished
with buffoonery and impropriety, after the usual fashion of this zany
of Parisian novelists.

Is it true that M. Honoré de Balzac is married to a female
_millionnaire_, who fell in love with him through his books and his
reputation? If so, let him take our advice and abjure scribbling--at
least till he is in the vein to turn out something better than his
recent productions--better, at least, than the first volume of the
_Député d'Arcis_, now lying before us. What heavy, vulgar trash,
to flow from the pen of a man of his abilities! After beginning
his literary career with a series of worthless books, published
under various pseudonymes, and whose authorship he has since in
vain endeavoured to disclaim, he rose into fame by his _Scènes de
la Vie de Province_, by his _Peau de Chagrin_, his _Père Goriot_,
and other striking and popular works. The hour of his decline then
struck, and he has since been rolling down the hill at a faster rate
than he ascended it. His affectation of originality is wearisome
and nauseous in the extreme. He reminds us of a nurseryman we once
knew, who, despairing of equalling the splendour of a neighbour's
flowers, applied himself to the production of all manner of floral
monstrosities, mistaking distortion for beauty, and eccentricity
for grace. He strains for new conceptions and ideas till he writes
nonsense, or something very little better. And his mania for
introducing the same personages in twenty different books, renders
it necessary to read all in order to understand one. The question
becomes, whether it is worth while going through so much to obtain
so little. Our reply is a decided negative. If the system, however,
be annoying to the reader, for the author it has its advantages. It
is, in fact, a new species of puffery, of considerable ingenuity.
Backwards and forwards, M. de Balzac refers his public; his books
are a system of mutual accommodation and advertisement. Thus, in
the _Député &c._, apropos of a lawsuit, we find in brackets and in
large capitals,--"_See_ UNE TENEBREUSE AFFAIRE." A little farther
on, an allusion being made to the town of Provins, we are requested
to "_See_ PIERRETTE." Similar admonitions are of constant recurrence
in the same author's writings. The plan is really clever, and proves
Paris a step or two ahead of London in the art of advertising. We
have not yet heard of Moses and Doudney stamping on a waistcoat back
an injunction to "Try our trousers," or embroidering on a new surtout
a hint as to the merits of a 'poplin overcoat.' "Buy our bear's
grease!" cries Mr Ross the perfumer. "_Prenez mon ours!_" chimes
in M. Balzac, the author. O Paris! Paris! romantic and republican,
political and poetical, of all the cities of the plain thou art the
queen, and humbug is the chief jewel in thy diadem!



LIFE IN THE "FAR WEST."

PART THE LAST.


No sooner was it known that Los Americanos had arrived, than nearly
all the householders of Fernandez presented themselves to offer the
use of their "salas" for the fandango which invariably celebrated
their arrival. This was always a profitable event; for as the
mountaineers were generally pretty well "flush" of cash when on
their "spree," and as open-handed as an Indian could wish, the sale
of whisky, with which they regaled all comers, produced a handsome
return to the fortunate individual whose room was selected for the
fandango. On this occasion the sala of the Alcalde Don Cornelio Vegil
was selected and put in order; a general invitation was distributed;
and all the dusky beauties of Fernandez were soon engaged in arraying
themselves for the fête. Off came the coats of dirt and "alegnía"
which had bedaubed their faces since the last "funcion," leaving
their cheeks clear and clean. Water was profusely used, and their
cuerpos were doubtless astonished by the unusual lavation. Their long
black hair was washed and combed, plastered behind their ears, and
plaited into a long queue, which hung down their backs. _Enaguas_
of gaudy colour (red most affected) were donned, fastened round the
waist with ornamented belts, and above this a snow-white _camisita_
of fine linen was the only covering, allowing a prodigal display
of their charms. Gold and silver ornaments, of antiquated pattern,
decorate their ears and necks; and massive crosses of the precious
metals, wrought from the gold or silver of their own placeres, hang
pendant on their breasts. The enagua or petticoat, reaching about
half-way between the knee and ancle, displays their well-turned
limbs, destitute of stockings, and their tiny feet, thrust into
quaint little shoes (_zapatitos_) of Cinderellan dimensions. Thus
equipped, with the reboso drawn over their heads and faces, out of
the folds of which their brilliant eyes flash like lightning, and
each pretty mouth armed with its cigarito, they coquettishly enter
the fandango.[2] Here, at one end of a long room, are seated the
musicians, their instruments being generally a species of guitar,
called heaca, _bandolin_, and an Indian drum, called _tombé_--one
of each. Round the room groups of New Mexicans lounge, wrapped in
the eternal sarape, and smoking of course, scowling with jealous
eyes at the more favoured mountaineers. These, divested of their
hunting-coats of buckskins, appear in their bran-new shirts of gaudy
calico, and close fitting buckskin pantaloons, with long fringes
down the outside seam from the hip to the ancle; with mocassins,
ornamented with bright beads and porcupine quills. Each, round his
waist, wears his mountain-belt and scalp-knife, ominous of the
company he is in, and some have pistols sticking in their belt.

The dances--save the mark!--are without form or figure, at least
those in which the white hunters sport the "fantastic toe." Seizing
his partner round the waist with the gripe of a grisly bear, each
mountaineer whirls and twirls, jumps and stamps; introduces Indian
steps used in the "scalp" or "buffalo" dances, whooping occasionally
with unearthly cry, and then subsiding into the jerking step, raising
each foot alternately from the ground, so much in vogue in Indian
ballets. The hunters have the floor all to themselves. The Mexicans
have no chance in such physical force dancing; and if a dancing
Peládo[3] steps into the ring, a lead-like thump from a galloping
mountaineer quickly sends him sprawling, with the considerate
remark--"Quit, you darned Spaniard! you can't 'shine' in this crowd."

During a lull, guagés[4] filled with whisky go the rounds--offered
to and seldom refused by the ladies--sturdily quaffed by the
mountaineers, and freely swallowed by the Peládos, who drown
their jealousy and envious hate of their entertainers in potent
aguardiente. Now, as the guagés are oft refilled and as often
drained, and as night advances, so do the spirits of the mountaineers
become more boisterous, while their attentions to their partners
become warmer--the jealousy of the natives waxes hotter thereat--and
they begin to show symptoms of resenting the endearments which the
mountaineers bestow upon their wives and sweethearts. And now,
when the room is filled to crowding,--with two hundred people,
swearing, drinking, dancing, and shouting--the half-dozen Americans
monopolising the fair, to the evident disadvantage of at least
threescore scowling Peládos, it happens that one of these, maddened
by whisky and the green-eyed monster, suddenly seizes a fair one
from the waist-encircling arm of a mountaineer, and pulls her from
her partner. Wagh!--La Bonté--it is he--stands erect as a pillar for
a moment, then raises his hand to his mouth, and gives a ringing
war-whoop--jumps upon the rash Peládo, seizes him by the body as if
he were a child, lifts him over his head, and dashes him with the
force of a giant against the wall.

The war, long threatened, has commenced; twenty Mexicans draw their
knives and rush upon La Bonté, who stands his ground, and sweeps
them down with his ponderous fist, one after another, as they throng
around him. "Howgh-owgh-owgh-owgh-h!" the well-known war-whoop,
bursts from the throats of his companions, and on they rush to the
rescue. The women scream, and block the door in their eagerness to
escape; and thus the Mexicans are compelled to stand their ground
and fight. Knives glitter in the light, and quick thrusts are given
and parried. In the centre of the room the whites stand shoulder to
shoulder--covering the floor with Mexicans by their stalwart blows;
but the odds are fearful against them, and other assailants crowd up
to supply the place of those who fall.

Alarm being given by the shrieking women, reinforcements of Peládos
rushed to the scene of action, but could not enter the room, which
was already full. The odds began to tell against the mountaineers,
when Kit Carson's quick eye caught sight of a high stool or stone,
supported by three long heavy legs. In a moment he had cleared his
way to this, and in another the three legs were broken off and in
the hands of himself, Dick Wooton, and La Bonté. Sweeping them round
their heads, down came the heavy weapons amongst the Mexicans with
wonderful effect--each blow, dealt by the nervous arms of Wooton
and La Bonté, mowing down a good half-dozen of the assailants. At
this the mountaineers gave a hearty whoop, and charged the wavering
enemy with such resistless vigour, that they gave way and bolted
through the door, leaving the floor strewed with wounded, many
most dangerously; for, as may be imagined, a thrust from the keen
scalp-knife by the nervous arm of a mountaineer was no baby blow, and
seldom failed to strike home--up to the "Green River"[5] on the blade.

The field being won, the whites, too, beat a quick retreat to the
house where they were domiciled, and where they had left their
rifles. Without their trusty weapons they felt, indeed, unarmed;
and not knowing how the affair just over would be followed up, lost
no time in making preparations for defence. However, after great
blustering on the part of the prefecto, who, accompanied by a _posse
comitatus_ of "Greasers," proceeded to the house, and demanded the
surrender of all concerned in the affair--which proposition was
received with a yell of derision--the business was compounded by the
mountaineers promising to give sundry dollars to the friends of two
of the Mexicans, who died during the night of their wounds, and to
pay for a certain amount of masses to be sung for the repose of their
souls in purgatory. Thus the affair blew over; but for several days
the mountaineers never showed themselves in the streets of Fernandez
without their rifles on their shoulders, and refrained from attending
fandangos for the present, and until the excitement had cooled down.

A bitter feeling, however, existed on the part of the men; and one
or two offers of a matrimonial nature were rejected by the papas of
certain ladies who had been wooed by some of the white hunters, and
their hands formally demanded from the respective padres.

La Bonté had been rather smitten with the charms of one Dolores
Salazar--a buxom lass, more than three parts Indian in her blood, but
confessedly the "beauty" of the Vale of Taos. She, by dint of eye,
and of nameless acts of elaborate coquetry, with which the sex so
universally bait their traps, whether in the salons of Belgravia, or
the rancherias of New Mexico, contrived to make considerable havoc in
the heart of our mountaineer; and when once Dolores saw she had made
an impression, she followed up her advantage with all the arts the
most civilised of her sex could use when fishing for a husband.

La Bonté, however, was too old a hunter to be easily caught; and,
before committing himself, he sought the advice of his tried
companion Killbuck. Taking him to a retired spot without the village,
he drew out his pipe and charged it--seated himself cross-legged on
the ground, and, with Indian gravity, composed himself for a "talk."

"Ho, Killbuck!" he began, touching the ground with the bowl of his
pipe, and then turning the stem upwards for "_medicine_"--"Hyar's
a child feels squamptious like, and nigh upon 'gone beaver,' _he_
is--Wagh!"

"Wagh!" exclaimed Killbuck, all attention.

"Old hos," continued the other; "thar's no use câching anyhow what a
niggur feels--so hyar's to 'put out.' You're good for beaver I know;
at deer or buffler, or darned red Injun either, you're 'some.' Now
that's a fact. 'Off-hand,' or 'with a rest,' you make 'em 'come.'
You knows the 'sign' of Injuns slick--Blackfoot or Sioux, Pawnee or
Burntwood, Zeton, Rapaho, Shian, or Shoshonée, Yutah, Piyutah, or
Yamhareek--their trail's as plain as writin', old hos, to you."

"Wagh!" grunted Killbuck, blushing bronze at all these compliments.

"Your sight ain't bad. Elks is elk; black-tail deer ain't
white-tails; and b'ar is b'ar to you, and nothin' else, a long mile
off and more."

"Wa-agh!"

"Thar ain't a track as leaves its mark upon the plains or mountains
but you can read off-hand; that I've see'd myself. But tell me, old
hos, can you make understand the 'sign' as shows itself in a woman's
breast?"

Killbuck removed the pipe from his mouth, raised his head, and puffed
a rolling cloud of smoke into the air,--knocked the ashes from the
bowl, likewise made his "medicine"--and answered thus:--

"From Red River, away up north amongst the Britishers, to Heely
(Gila) in the Spanish country--from old Missoura to the sea of
Californy, I've trapped and hunted. I knows the Injuns and thar
'sign,' and they knows _me_, I'm thinkin. Thirty winters has snowed
on me in these hyar mountains, and a niggur or a Spaniard[6] would
larn 'some' in that time. This old tool" (tapping his rifle) "shoots
'center,' _she_ does; and if thar's game afoot, this child knows
'bull' from 'cow,' and ought to could. That deer is deer, and goats
is goats, is plain as paint to any but a greenhorn. Beaver's a
cunning crittur, but I've trapped a 'heap;' and at killing meat
when meat's a-running, I'll 'shine' in the biggest kind of crowd.
For twenty year I packed a squaw along. Not one, but a many. First
I had a Blackfoot--the darndest slut as ever cried for fofarraw. I
lodge-poled her on Colter's Creek, and made her quit. My buffler
hos, and as good as four packs of beaver, I gave for old Bull-tail's
daughter. He was head chief of the Ricaree, and 'came' nicely 'round'
me. Thar wasn't enough scarlet cloth, nor beads, nor vermilion in
Sublette's packs for her. Traps wouldn't buy her all the fofarrow she
wanted; and in two years I'd sold her to Cross-Eagle for one of Jake
Hawkin's guns--this very one I hold in my hands. Then I tried the
Sioux, the Shian, and a Digger from the other side, who made the best
mocassin as ever _I_ wore. She was the best of all, and was rubbed
out by the Yutahs in the Bayou Salade. Bad was the best; and after
she was gone under I tried no more.

"Afore I left the settlements I know'd a white gal, and she was some
punkins. I have never seed nothing as 'ould beat her. Red blood
won't 'shine' any ways you fix it; and though I'm hell for 'sign,' a
woman's breast is the hardest kind of rock to me, and leaves no trail
that I can see of. I've hearn you talk of a gal in Memphis county;
Mary Brand you called her oncest. The gal I said _I_ know'd, her
name I disremember, but she stands afore me as plain as Chimley Rock
on Platte, and thirty year and more har'nt changed a feature in her
face, to me.

"If you ask this child, he'll tell you to leave the Spanish slut to
her Greasers, and hold on till you take the trail to old Missoura,
whar white and Christian gals are to be had for axing. Wagh!"

La Bonté rose to his feet. The mention of Mary Brand's name decided
him; and he said--

"Darn the Spaniard! she cant shine with me; come, old hos! let's
move."

And, shouldering their rifles, the two compañeros returned to the
Ronch. More than one of the mountaineers had fulfilled the object of
their journey, and had taken to themselves a partner from amongst
the belles of Taos, and now they were preparing for their return
to the mountains. Dick Wooton was the only unfortunate one. He had
wooed a damsel whose parents peremptorily forbade their daughter to
wed the hunter, and he therefore made ready for his departure with
considerable regret.

The day came, however. The band of mountaineers were already mounted,
and those with wives in charge were some hours on the road, leaving
the remainder quaffing many a stirrup-cup before they left. Dick
Wooton was as melancholy as a buffalo bull in spring; and as he rode
down the village, and approached the house of his lady-love, who
stood wrapped in reboso, and cigarito in mouth, on the sill of the
door, he turned away his head as if dreading to say adios. La Bonté
rode beside him, and a thought struck him.

"Ho, Dick!" he said, "thar's the gal, and thar's the mountains: shoot
sharp's the word."

Dick instantly understood him, and was "himself again." He rode up to
the girl as if to bid her adieu, and she came to meet him. Whispering
one word, she put her foot upon his, was instantly seized round the
waist, and placed upon the horn of his saddle. He struck spurs into
his horse, and in a minute was out of sight, his three companions
covering his retreat, and menacing with their rifles the crowd which
was soon drawn to the spot by the cries of the girl's parents, who
had been astonished spectators of the daring rape.

The trapper and his bride, however, escaped scatheless, and the whole
party effected a safe passage of the mountains, and reached the
Arkansa, where the band was broken up,--some proceeding to Bent's
Fort, and others to the Platte, amongst whom were Killbuck and La
Bonté, still in company.

These two once more betook themselves to trapping, the Yellow Stone
being their chief hunting-ground. But we must again leap over months
and years, rather than conduct the reader through all their perilous
wanderings, and at last bring him back to the camp on Bijou, where
we first introduced him to our mountaineers; and as we have already
followed them on the Arapaho trail, which they pursued to recover
their stolen animals from a band of that nation, we will once again
seat ourselves at the camp on Boiling Spring, where they had met a
strange hunter on a solitary expedition to the Bayou Salade, and
whose double-barrelled rifle had excited their wonder and curiosity.

From him they learned also that a large band of Mormons were
wintering on the Arkansa, _en route_ to the Great Salt Lake and Upper
California; and as our hunters had before fallen in with the advanced
guard of these fanatic emigrants, and felt no little wonder that
such helpless people should undertake so long a journey through the
wilderness, the stranger narrated to them the history of the sect,
which we will also shortly transcribe for the benefit of the reader.

The Mormons were originally of the sect known as "Latter-day
Saints," which sect flourishes wherever Anglo-Saxon gulls are found
in sufficient numbers to swallow the egregious nonsense of fanatic
humbugs who fatten upon their credulity. In the United States they
especially abounded; but, the creed becoming "slow," one Joe Smith, a
_smart_ man, arose from its ranks, and instilled a little life into
the decaying sect.

Joe, better known as the "Prophet Joe," was taking his siesta one
fine day, upon a hill in one of the New England States, when an angel
suddenly appeared to him, and made known the locality of a new Bible
or Testament, which contained the history of the lost tribes of
Israel; that these tribes were no other than the Indian nations which
possessed the continent of America at the time of its discovery,
and the remains of which still existed in their savage state; that,
through the agency of Joe, these were to be reclaimed, collected
into the bosom of a church to be there established, according to
principles which would be found in the wonderful book--and which
church was gradually to receive into its bosom all other churches,
sects, and persuasions, with "unanimity of belief and perfect
brotherhood."

After a certain probation, Joe was led in body and spirit to the
mountain by the angel who first appeared to him, was pointed out the
position of the wonderful book, which was covered by a flat stone,
on which would be found two round pebbles, called Urim and Thummim,
and through the agency of which the mystic characters inscribed on
the pages of the book were to be deciphered and translated. Joe found
the spot indicated without any difficulty, cleared away the earth,
and discovered a hollow place formed by four flat stones; on removing
the topmost one of which sundry plates of brass presented themselves,
covered with quaint and antique carving; on the top lay Urim and
Thummim, (commonly known to the Mormons as Mummum and Thummum, the
pebbles of wonderful virtue,) through which the miracle of reading
the plates of brass was to be performed.

Joe Smith, on whom the mantle of Moses had so suddenly fallen,
carefully removed the plates and hid them, burying himself in woods
and mountains whilst engaged in the work of translation. However, he
made no secret of the important task imposed upon him, nor of the
great work to which he had been called. Numbers at once believed
him, but not a few were deaf to belief, and openly derided him.
Being persecuted, (as the sect declares, at the instigation of the
authorities,) and many attempts being made to steal his precious
treasure, Joe, one fine night, packed his plates in a sack of beans,
bundled them into a Jersey waggon, and made tracks for the West. Here
he completed the great work of translation, and not long after gave
to the world the "Book of Mormon," a work as bulky as the Bible, and
called "of Mormon," for so was the prophet named by whose hand the
history of the lost tribes had been handed down in the plates of
brass thus miraculously preserved for thousands of years, and brought
to light through the agency of Joseph Smith.

The fame of the Book of Mormon spread over all America, and even to
Great Britain and Ireland. Hundreds of proselytes flocked to Joe, to
hear from his lips the doctrine of Mormonism; and in a very brief
period the Mormons became a numerous and recognised sect, and Joe was
at once, and by universal acclamation, installed as the head of the
Mormon church, and was ever known by the name of the "Prophet Joseph."

However, from certain peculiarities in their social system, the
Mormons became rather unpopular in the settled States, and at length
moved bodily into Missouri, where they purchased several tracts
of land in the neighbourhood of Independence. Here they erected a
large building, which they called the Lord's Store, where goods were
collected on the common account, and retailed to members of the
church at moderate prices. All this time their numbers increased in
a wonderful manner, and immigrants from all parts of the States, as
well as Europe, continually joined them. As they became stronger,
they grew bolder and more arrogant in their projects. They had
hitherto been considered as bad neighbours, on account of their
pilfering propensities, and their utter disregard of the conventional
decencies of society--exhibiting the greatest immorality, and
endeavouring to establish amongst their society a universal
concubinage. This was sufficient to produce an ill feeling against
them on the part of their neighbours, the honest Missourians; but
they still tolerated their presence amongst them, until the Saints
openly proclaimed their intention of seizing upon the country, and
expelling by force the present occupants--giving, as their reason,
that it had been revealed to their prophets that the "Land of Zion"
was to be possessed by themselves alone.

The sturdy Missourians began to think this was a little too strong,
and that, if they permitted such aggressions any longer, they would
be in a fair way of being despoiled of their lands by the Mormon
interlopers. At length matters came to a crisis, and the Saints,
emboldened by the impunity with which they had hitherto carried out
their plans, issued a proclamation to the effect that all in that
part of the country, who did not belong to the Mormon persuasion,
must "clear out," and give up possession of their lands and houses.
The Missourians collected in a body, burned the printing-press from
which the proclamation had emanated, seized several of the Mormon
leaders, and, after inflicting a summary chastisement, "tarred and
feathered" them, and let them go.

To revenge this insult, the Mormons marshalled an army of Saints, and
marched upon Independence, threatening vengeance against the town
and people. Here they met, however, a band of sturdy backwoodsmen,
armed with rifles, determined to defend the town against the fanatic
mob, who, not relishing their appearance, refused the encounter, and
surrendered their leaders at the first demand. The prisoners were
afterwards released, on condition that the Mormons left that part of
the country without delay.

Accordingly, they once more "took up their beds and walked," crossing
the Missouri to Clay County, where they established themselves, and
would finally have formed a thriving settlement but for their own
acts of wilful dishonesty. At this time their blasphemous mummery
knew no bounds. Joe Smith, and other prophets who had lately arisen,
were declared to be chosen of God; and it was the general creed
that, on the day of judgment, the former would take his stand on the
right hand of the judgment-seat, and that none would pass into the
kingdom of heaven without his seal and touch. One of their tenets
was the faith in "spiritual matrimony." No woman, it appeared, would
be admitted into heaven unless "passed" by a saint. To qualify them
for this, it was necessary that the woman should first be received
by the guaranteeing Mormon as an "earthly wife," in order that he
did not pass in any of whom he had no knowledge. The consequence of
this state of things may be imagined. The most debasing immorality
was a precept of the order, and an almost universal concubinage
existed amongst the sect, which at this time numbered at least forty
thousand. Their disregard to the laws of decency and morality was
such as could not be tolerated in any class of civilised society.

Again did the honest Missourians set their faces against this
pernicious example, and when the county to which the Mormons had
removed became more thickly settled, they rose to a man against the
modern Gomorrah. The Mormons, by this time, having on their part
gained considerable accession to their strength, thought to set the
laws at defiance, organised and armed large bodies of men, in order
to maintain the ascendency over the legitimate settlers, and bid fair
to constitute an "imperium in imperio" in the State, and become the
sole possessors of the public lands. This, of course, could not be
tolerated. Governor Boggs at once ordered out a large force of State
militia to put down this formidable demonstration, marched against
the Mormons, and suppressed the insurrectionary movement without
bloodshed.

From Clay County they moved still farther into the wilds, and settled
at last in Caldwell County, where they built the town of "Far West,"
and here they remained for the space of three years.

During this time they were continually receiving converts to the
faith, and many of the more ignorant country people were disposed to
join them, being only deterred by the fear of incurring ridicule from
the stronger-minded. The body of the Mormons seeing this, called upon
their prophet, Joe Smith, to perform a miracle in public before all
comers, which was to prove to those of their own people who still
doubted the doctrine, the truth of what it advanced--(the power of
performing miracles was steadfastly declared to be in their hands by
the prophets)--and to enlist those who wavered in the Mormon cause.

The prophet instantly agreed, and declared that, upon a certain day,
he would walk across the broad waters of the Missouri without wetting
the soles of his feet. On the appointed day, the river banks were
thronged by an expectant crowd. The Mormons sang hymns of praise in
honour of their prophet, and were proud of the forthcoming miracle,
which was to set finally at rest all doubt as to his power and
sanctity.

This power of performing miracles, and effecting miraculous cures of
the sick, was so generally believed by the Mormons, that physic was
never used amongst them. The prophets visited the beds of the sick,
and laid hands upon them, and if, as of course was almost invariably
the case, the patient died, it was attributed to his or her want of
faith; but if, on the contrary, the patient recovered, there was
universal glorification on the miraculous cure.

Joe Smith was a tall, fine-looking man, of most plausible address,
and possessed the gift of the gab in great perfection. At the time
appointed for the performance of the walking-water miracle, he duly
attended on the river banks, and descended barefoot to the edge of
the water.

"My brethren!" he exclaimed in a loud voice, "this day is a happy
one to me, to us all, who venerate the great and only faith. The
truth of our great and blessed doctrine will now be proved before the
thousands I see around me. You have asked me to prove by a miracle
that the power of the prophets of old has been given to me. I say
unto you, not only to me, but to all who have faith. I have faith,
and can perform miracles--that faith empowers me to walk across the
broad surface of that mighty river without wetting the soles of my
unworthy feet; but if ye are to _see_ this miracle performed, it is
necessary that ye have faith also, not only in yourselves, but in me.
Have ye this faith in yourselves?"

"We have, we have!" roared the crowd.

"Have ye the faith in me, that ye believe I can perform this miracle?"

"We have, we have!" roared the crowd.

"Then," said Joe Smith, coolly walking away, "with such faith do ye
know well that I _could_, but it boots not that I _should_, do it;
therefore, my brethren, doubt no more"--and Joe put on his boots and
disappeared.

Being again compelled to emigrate, the Mormons proceeded into the
state of Illinois, where, in a beautiful situation, they founded the
new Jerusalem, which, it had been declared by the prophet Mormon,
should rise out of the wilderness of the west, and where the chosen
people should be collected under one church, and governed by the
elders after a "spiritual fashion."

The city of Nauvoo soon became a large and imposing settlement. An
enormous building, called the Temple of Zion, was erected, half
church, half hotel, in which Joe Smith and the other prophets
resided--and large storehouses were connected with it, in which the
goods and chattels belonging to the community were kept for the
common good.

However, here, as every where else, they were continually quarrelling
with their neighbours; and as their numbers increased, so did their
audacity. A regular Mormon militia was again organised and armed,
under the command of experienced officers, who had joined the sect;
and now the authority of the state government was openly defied. In
consequence, the executive took measures to put down the nuisance,
and a regular war commenced, and was carried on for some time, with
no little bloodshed on both sides; and this armed movement is known
in the United States as the Mormon war. The Mormons, however, who,
it seemed, were much better skilled in the use of the tongue than
the rifle, succumbed: the city of Nauvoo was taken, Joe Smith and
other ringleading prophets captured; and the former, in an attempt to
escape from his place of confinement was seized and shot. The Mormons
declare he had long foretold his own fate, and that when the rifles
of the firing party who were his executioners were levelled at the
prophet's breast, a flash of lightning struck the weapons from their
hands, and blinded for a time the eyes of the sacrilegious soldiers.

With the death of Joe Smith the prestige of the Mormon cause
declined; but still thousands of proselytes joined them annually, and
at last the state took measures to remove them altogether, as a body,
from the country.

Once again they fled, as they themselves term it, before the
persecutions of the ungodly! But this time their migration was far
beyond the reach of their enemies, and their intention was to place
between them the impassable barrier of the Rocky Mountains, and to
seek a home and resting-place in the remote regions of the Far West.

This, the most extraordinary migration of modern times, commenced
in the year 1845; but it was not till the following year that the
great body of the Mormons turned their backs upon the settlements of
the United States, and launched boldly out into the vast and barren
prairies, without any fixed destination as a goal to their endless
journey. For many months, long strings of Pittsburg and Conostoga
waggons, with herds of horses and domestic cattle, wound their way
towards the Indian frontier, with the intention of rendezvousing
at Council Bluffs on the Upper Missouri. Here thousands of waggons
were congregated, with their tens of thousands of men, women, and
children, anxiously waiting the route from the elders of the church,
who on their parts scarcely knew whither to direct the steps of
the vast crowd they had set in motion. At length the indefinite
destination of Oregon and California was proclaimed, and the long
train of emigrants took up the line of march. It was believed the
Indian tribes would immediately fraternise with the Mormons, on their
approaching their country; but the Pawnees quickly undeceived them
by running off with their stock on every opportunity. Besides these
losses, at every camp, horses, sheep, and oxen strayed away and were
not recovered, and numbers died from fatigue and want of provender;
so that, before they had been many weeks on their journey, nearly
all their cattle, which they had brought to stock their new country,
were dead or missing, and those that were left were in most miserable
condition.

They had started so late in the season, that the greater part were
compelled to winter on the Platte, on Grand Island, and in the
vicinity, where they endured the greatest privations and suffering
from cold and hunger. Many who had lost their stock lived upon
roots and pig-nuts; and scurvy, in a most malignant form, and other
disorders, carried off numbers of the wretched fanatics.

Amongst them were many substantial farmers from all parts of the
United States, who had given up their valuable farms, sold off all
their property, and were dragging their irresponsible and unfortunate
families into the wilderness--carried away by their blind and
fanatic zeal in this absurd and incredible faith. There were also
many poor wretches from different parts of England, mostly of the
farm-labouring class, with wives and families, crawling along with
helpless and almost idiotic despair, but urged forward by the fanatic
leaders of the movement, who promised them a land flowing with milk
and honey to reward them for all their hardships and privations.

Their numbers were soon reduced by want and disease. When too late,
they often wished themselves back in the old country, and sighed many
a time for the beer and bacon of former days, now preferable to the
dry buffalo meat (but seldom obtainable) of the Far West.

Evil fortune pursued the Mormons, and dogged their steps. The year
following, some struggled on towards the promised land, and of these
a few reached Oregon and California. Many were killed by hostile
Indians; many perished of hunger, cold, and thirst, in passing the
great wilderness; and many returned to the States, penniless and
crestfallen, and heartily cursing the moment in which they had
listened to the counsels of the Mormon prophet. The numbers who
reached their destination of Oregon, California, and the Great Salt
Lake, are computed at 20,000, of whom the United States had an
unregretted riddance.

One party had followed the troops of the American government intended
for the conquest of New Mexico and the Californias. Of these a
battalion was formed, and part of it proceeded to Upper California;
but the way being impracticable for waggons, some seventy families
proceeded up the Arkansa, and wintered near the mountains, intending
to cross to the Platte the ensuing spring, and join the main body of
emigrants on their way by the south pass of the Rocky Mountains.

In the wide and well-timbered bottom of the Arkansa, the Mormons had
erected a street of log shanties, in which to pass the inclement
winter. These were built of rough logs of cotton-wood, laid one above
the other, the interstices filled with mud, and rendered impervious
to wind or wet. At one end of the row of shanties was built the
"church" or temple--a long building of huge logs, in which the
prayer-meetings and holdings-forth took place. The band wintering on
the Arkansa were a far better class than the generality of Mormons,
and comprised many wealthy and respectable farmers from the western
states, most of whom were accustomed to the life of woodmen, and were
good hunters. Thus they were enabled to support their families upon
the produce of their rifles, frequently sallying out to the nearest
point of the mountains with a waggon, which they would bring back
loaded with buffalo, deer, and elk meat, thereby saving the necessity
of killing any of their stock of cattle, of which but few remained.

The mountain hunters found this camp a profitable market for their
meat and deer-skins with which the Mormons were now compelled to
clothe themselves, and resorted there for that purpose--to say
nothing of the attraction of the many really beautiful Missourian
girls who sported their tall graceful figures at the frequent
fandangoes. Dancing and preaching go hand in hand in Mormon doctrine,
and the "temple" was generally cleared for a hop two or three times
during the week, a couple of fiddles doing the duty of orchestra. A
party of mountaineers came in one day, bringing some buffalo meat and
dressed deer-skins, and were invited to be present at one of these
festivals.

Arrived at the temple, they were rather taken aback by finding
themselves in for a sermon, which one of the elders delivered
preparatory to the "physical exercises." The preacher was one
Brown--called, by reason of his commanding a company of Mormon
volunteers, "Cap'en Brown,"--a hard-featured, black-coated, man of
five-and-forty, correctly got up in black continuations and white
handkerchief round his neck, a costume seldom seen at the foot of
the Rocky Mountains. The Cap'en, rising, cleared his voice, and thus
commenced, first turning to an elder (with whom there was a little
rivalry in the way of preaching,) "Brother Dowdle!" (brother Dowdle
blushed and nodded--he was a long tallow-faced man, with black hair
combed over his face,) "I feel like holding forth a little this
afternoon, before we glorify the Lord,--a--a--in the--a--holy dance.
As there are a many strange gentlemen now--a--present, it's about
right to tell 'em--a--what our doctrine just is, and so I tells 'em
right off what the Mormons is. They are the chosen of the Lord; they
are the children of glory, persecuted by the hand of man: they flies
here to the wilderness, and, amongst the _Injine_ and the buffler,
they lifts up their heads, and cries with a loud voice, Susannah, and
hurray for the promised land! Do you believe it? I _know_ it.

"They wants to know whar we're going. Whar the church goes--thar we
goes. Yes, to hell, and pull the devil off his throne--that's what
we'll do. Do you believe it? I _know_ it.

"Thar's milk and honey in that land as we're goin' to, and the lost
tribes of Israel is thar, and will jine us. They say as we'll starve
on the road, bekase thar's no game and no water; but thar's manna up
in heaven, and it'll rain on us, and thar's prophets among us as can
make the water 'come.' Can't they, brother Dowdle?"

"_Well_, they can."

"And now, what have the Gen_tiles_ and the Philis_tines_ to say
against us Mormons? They says we're thieves, and steal hogs; yes,
d---- 'em! they say we has as many wives as we like. So we have. I've
twenty--forty, myself, and mean to have as many more as I can get.
But it's to pass unfortunate females into heaven that I has 'em--yes,
to prevent 'em going to roaring flames and damnation that I does it.

"Brother Dowdle," he continued, in a hoarse, low voice, "I've 'give
out,' and think we'd better begin the exercises grettful to the Lord."

Brother Dowdle rose, and, after saying that "he didn't feel like
saying much, begged to remind all hands, that dancing was solemn
music like, to be sung with proper devotion, and not with laughing
and talking, of which he hoped to hear little or none; that joy
was to be in their hearts, and not on their lips; that they danced
for the glory of the Lord, and not their own amusement, as did the
Gen_tiles_." After saying thus, he called upon brother Ezra to
"strike up:" sundry couples stood forth, and the ball commenced.

Ezra of the violin was a tall, shambling Missourian, with a pair
of "homespun" pantaloons thrust into the legs of his heavy boots.
Nodding his head in time with the music, he occasionally gave
instructions to such of the dancers as were at fault, singing them to
the tune he was playing, in a dismal nasal tone,--

    "Down the centre--hands across,"
    "You, Jake Herring--thump it,"
    "Now, you all go right a-head--
    Every one of you hump it.
          Every one of you--_hump it_."

The last words being the signal that all should clap the steam on,
which they did _con amore_, and with comical seriousness.

A mountaineer, Rube Herring, whom we have more than once met in the
course of this narrative, became a convert to the Mormon creed,
and held forth its wonderful doctrines to such of the incredulous
trappers as he could induce to listen to him. Old Rube stood nearly
six feet six in height, and was spare and bony in make. He had picked
up a most extraordinary cloth coat amongst the Mormons, which had
belonged to some one his equal in stature. This coat, which was of
a snuff-brown colour, had its waist about a hand's span from the
nape of Rube's neck, or about a yard above its proper position, and
the skirts reached to his ancles. A slouching felt-hat covered his
head, from which long black hair escaped, hanging in flakes over his
lantern-jaws. His pantaloons of buckskin were shrunk with wet, and
reached midway between his knees and ankles, and his huge feet were
encased in mocassins of buffalo-cow skin.

Rube was never without the book of Mormon in his hand, and his
sonorous voice might be heard, at all hours of the day and night,
reading passages from its wonderful pages. He stood the badgering
of the hunters with most perfect good humour, and said there never
was such a book as that ever before printed; that the Mormons were
the "biggest kind" of prophets, and theirs the best faith ever man
believed in.

Rube had let out one day, that he was to be hired as guide by this
party of Mormons to the Great Salt Lake; but their destination being
changed, and his services not required, a wonderful change came over
his mind. He was, as usual, book of Mormon in hand, when brother
Brown announced the change in their plans; at which the book was cast
into the Arkansa, and Rube exclaimed,--"Cuss your darned Mummum and
Thummum! thar's not one among you knows 'fat cow' from 'poor bull,'
and you may go h---- for me." And turning away, old Rube spat out a
quid of tobacco and his Mormonism together.

Amongst the Mormons was an old man, named Brand, from Memphis
county, state of Tennessee, with a family of a daughter and two
sons, the latter with their wives and children. Brand was a wiry old
fellow, nearly seventy years of age, but still stout and strong,
and wielded axe or rifle better than many a younger man. If truth
be told, he was not a very red-hot Mormon, and had joined them as
much for the sake of company to California, whither he had long
resolved to emigrate, as from any implicit credence in the faith. His
sons were strapping fellows, of the sterling stuff that the Western
pioneers are made of; his daughter Mary, a fine woman of thirty, for
whose state of single blessedness there must doubtless have been
sufficient reason; for she was not only remarkably handsome, but was
well known in Memphis to be the best-tempered and most industrious
young woman in those diggings. She was known to have received several
advantageous offers, all of which she had refused; and report said,
that it was from having been disappointed in very early life in an
_affaire du coeur_, at an age when such wounds sometimes strike
strong and deep, leaving a scar difficult to heal. Neither his
daughter, nor any of his family, had been converted to the Mormon
doctrine, but had ever kept themselves aloof, and refused to join
or associate with them; and, for this reason, the family had been
very unpopular with the Mormon families on the Arkansa; and hence,
probably, one great reason why they now started alone on their
journey.

Spring had arrived, and it was time the Mormons should start on their
long journey; but whether already tired of the sample they had had
of life in the wilderness, or fearful of encountering the perils
of the Indian country, not one amongst them, with the exception of
old Brand, seemed inclined to pursue the journey farther. That old
backwoodsman, however, was not to be deterred, but declared his
intention of setting out alone, with his family, and risking all the
dangers to be anticipated.

One fine sunny evening in April of 1847, when the cotton-woods on the
banks of the Arkansa began to put forth their buds, and robins and
blue-birds--harbingers of spring,--were hopping, with gaudy plumage,
through the thickets, three white tilted Conostoga waggons emerged
from the timbered bottom of the river, and rumbled slowly over
the prairie, in the direction of the Platte's waters. Each waggon
was drawn by eight oxen, and contained a portion of the farming
implements and household utensils of the Brand family. The teams were
driven by the young boys, the men following in rear with shouldered
rifles--Old Brand himself, mounted on an Indian horse, leading the
advance. The women were safely housed under the shelter of the waggon
tilts, and out of the first the mild face of Mary Brand smiled adieu
to many of her old companions who had accompanied them thus far, and
now wished them "God-speed" on their long journey. Some mountaineers,
too, galloped up, dressed in buckskin, and gave them rough
greeting,--warning the men to keep their "eyes skinned," and look out
for the Arapahos, who were out on the waters of the Platte. Presently
all retired, and then the huge waggons and the little company were
rolling on their solitary way through the deserted prairies--passing
the first of the many thousand miles which lay between them and the
"setting sun," as the Indians style the distant regions of the Far
West. And on, without casting a look behind him, doggedly and boldly
marched old Brand, followed by his sturdy family.

They made but a few miles that evening, for the first day the _start_
is all that is effected; and nearly the whole morning is taken up in
getting fairly underweigh. The loose stock had been sent off earlier,
for they had been collected and corralled the previous night; and,
after a twelve hours' fast, it was necessary they should reach the
end of the day's journey betimes. They found the herd grazing in the
bottom of the Arkansa, at a point previously fixed upon for their
first camp. Here the oxen were unyoked, and the waggons drawn up to
form the three sides of a small square. The women then descended from
their seats, and prepared the evening meal. A huge fire was kindled
before the waggons, and round this the whole party collected; whilst
large kettles of coffee boiled on it, and hoe-cakes baked upon the
embers.

The women were sadly down-hearted, as well they might be, with the
dreary prospect before them; and poor Mary, when she saw the Mormon
encampment shut out from her sight by the rolling bluffs, and nothing
before her but the bleak, barren prairie, could not divest herself
of the idea that she had looked for the last time on civilised
fellow-creatures, and fairly burst into tears.

In the morning the heavy waggons rolled on again, across the upland
prairies, to strike the trail used by the traders in passing from
the south fork of the Platte to the Arkansa. They had for guide a
Canadian voyageur, who had been in the service of the Indian traders,
and knew the route well, and who had agreed to pilot them to Fort
Lancaster, on the north fork of the Platte. Their course led for
about thirty miles up the Boiling Spring River, whence they pursued
a north-easterly course to the dividing ridge which separates the
waters of the Platte and Arkansa. Their progress was slow, for the
ground was saturated with wet, and exceedingly heavy for the cattle,
and they scarcely advanced more than ten miles a-day.

At the camp-fire at night, Antoine, the Canadian guide, amused them
with tales of the wild life and perilous adventures of the hunters
and trappers who make the mountains their home; often extorting a
scream from the women by the description of some scene of Indian
fight and slaughter, or beguiling them of a commiserating tear by the
narrative of the sufferings and privations endured by those hardy
hunters in their arduous life.

Mary listened with the greater interest, since she remembered that
such was the life, which had been led by one very dear to her--by
one, long supposed to be dead, of whom she had never but once, since
his departure, nearly fifteen years before, heard a syllable. Her
imagination pictured him as the bravest and most daring of these
adventurous hunters, and conjured up his figure charging through the
midst of whooping savages, or stretched on the ground perishing from
wounds, or cold, or famine.

Amongst the characters who figured in Antoine's stories, a hunter
named La Bonté was made conspicuous for deeds of hardiness, and
daring. The first mention of the name caused the blood to rush to
Mary's face: not that she for a moment imagined it was her La Bonté,
for she knew the name was a common one; but, associated with feelings
which she had never got the better of, it recalled a sad epoch in her
former life, to which she could not look back without mingled pain
and pleasure.

Once only, and about two years after his departure, had she ever
received tidings of her former lover. A mountaineer had returned from
the Far West to settle in his native State, and had found his way to
the neighbourhood of old Brand's farm. Meeting him by accident, Mary,
hearing him speak of the mountain hunters, had inquired, tremblingly
after La Bonté. Her informant knew him well--had trapped in company
with him--and had heard at the trading fort, whence he had taken his
departure for the settlements, that La Bonté had been killed on the
Yellow Stone by Blackfeet; which report was confirmed by some Indians
of that nation. This was all she had ever learned of the lover of her
youth.

Now, upon hearing the name of La Bonté so often mentioned by Antoine,
a vague hope was raised in her breast that he was still alive, and
she took an opportunity of questioning the Canadian closely on the
subject.

"Who was this La Bonté, Antoine, whom you say was so brave a
mountaineer?" she asked one day.

"J'ne sais pas, he vas un beau garçon, and strong comme le
diable--enfant de garce, mais he pas not care a dam for les sauvages,
pe gar. He shoot de centare avec his carabine; and ride de cheval
comme one Comanche. He trap heap castor, (what you call beevare,) and
get plenty dollare--mais he open hand vare wide--and got none too.
Den, he hont vid de Blackfoot and avec de Cheyenne, and all round de
montaignes he hont dam sight."

"But, Antoine, what became of him at last? and why did he not come
home, when he made so many dollars?" asked poor Mary.

"Enfant de garce, mais pourquoi he com home? Pe gar, de
montaigne-man, he love de montaigne and de prairie more better dan he
love de grandes villes--même de Saint Louis ou de Montreal. Wagh! La
Bonté, well he one montaigne-man, wagh! He love de buffaloe, an de
chevreaux plus que de boeuf and de mouton, may be. Mais on-dit dat
he have autre raison--dat de gal he lofe in Missouri not lofe him,
and for dis he not go back. Mais now he go ondare, m' on dit. He vas
go to de Californe, may be to steal de hos and de mule--pe gar, and
de Espagnols rub him out, and take his hair, so he mort."

"But are you sure of this?" she asked, trembling with grief.

"Ah, now, j'ne suis pas sûr, mais I tink you know dis La Bonté.
Enfant de garce, maybe you de gal in Missouri he lofe, and not lofe
him. Pe gar! 'fant de garce! fort beau garçon dis La Bonté, pourquoi
you ne l'aimez pas? Maybe he not gone ondare. Maybe he turn op,
autre-fois. De trappares, dey go ondare tree, four, ten times, mais
dey turn op twenty time. De sauvage not able for kill La Bonté, ni de
dam Espagnols. Ah, non! ne craignez pas; pe gar, he not gone ondare
encore."

Spite of the good-natured attempts of the Canadian, poor Mary burst
into a flood of tears: not that the information took her unawares,
for she long had believed him dead; but because the very mention of
his name awoke the strongest feelings within her breast, and taught
her how deep was the affection she had felt for him whose loss and
violent fate she now bewailed.

As the waggons of the lone caravan roll on towards the Platte, we
return to the camp where La Bonté, Killbuck, and the stranger, were
sitting before the fire when last we saw them:--Killbuck loquitur.

"The doins of them Mormon fools can't be beat by Spaniards, stranger.
Their mummums and thummums you speak of won't 'shine' whar Injuns are
about; nor pint out a trail, whar nothin crossed but rattler-snakes
since fust it snow'd on old Pike's Peak. If they pack along them
_profits_, as you tell of, who can make it rain hump-ribs and
marrow-guts when the crowd gets out of the buffler range, they are
'some,' now, that's a fact. But this child don't believe it. I'd
laugh to get a sight on these darned Mormonites, I would. They're
'no account,' I guess; and it's the 'meanest' kind of action to haul
their women critters and their young 'uns to sech a starving country
as the Californys."

"They are not all Mormons in the crowd," said the strange hunter;
"and there's one family amongst them with some smartish boys and
girls, I tell you. Their name's Brand."

La Bonté looked up from the lock of his rifle, which he was
cleaning--but either didn't hear, or, hearing, didn't heed, for he
continued his work.

"And they are going to part company," continued the stranger, "and
put out alone for Platte and the South Pass."

"They'll lose their hair, I'm thinking," said Killbuck, "if the
Rapahos are out thar."

"I hope not," continued the other, "for there's a girl amongst them
worth more than that."

"Poor beaver!" said La Bonté, looking up from his work. "I'd hate to
see any white gal in the hands of Injuns, and of Rapahos worse than
all. Where does she come from, stranger?"

"Down below St Louis, from Tennessee, I've heard them say."

"Tennessee," cried La Bonté,--"hurrah for the old State! What's her
name, stran----" At this moment Killbuck's old mule pricked her ears
and snuffed the air, which action catching La Bonté's eye, he rose
abruptly, without waiting a reply to his question, and exclaimed,
"The old mule smells Injuns, or I'm a Spaniard!"

The hunter did the old mule justice, and she well maintained her
reputation as the best "guard" in the mountains; for in two minutes
an Indian stalked into the camp, dressed in a cloth capote, and in
odds and ends of civilised attire.

"Rapaho," cried Killbuck, as soon as he saw him; and the Indian
catching the word, struck his hand upon his breast, and exclaimed,
in broken Spanish and English mixed, "Si, si, me Arapaho, white man
amigo. Come to camp--eat heap _carne_--me amigo white man. Come
from Pueblo--hunt cibola--me gun break--_no puedo matar nada: mucha
hambre_, (very hungry)--heap eat."

Killbuck offered his pipe to the Indian, and spoke to him in his own
language, which both he and La Bonté well understood. They learned
that he was married to a Mexican woman, and lived with some hunters
at the Pueblo fort on the Arkansa. He volunteered the information
that a war party of his people were out on the Platte trail to
intercept the Indian traders on their return from the North Fork;
and as some "Mormones" had just started with three waggons in that
direction, he said his people would make a "roise." Being muy amigo
himself to the whites, he cautioned his present companions from
crossing to the "divide," as the "braves," he said, were a "heap"
mad, and their hearts were "big," and nothing in the shape of white
skin would live before them.

"Wagh!" exclaimed Killbuck, "the Rapahos know me, I'm thinking; and
small gain they've made against this child. I've knowed the time when
my gun cover couldn't hold more of their scalps."

The Indian was provided with some powder, of which he stood in need;
and, after gorging as much meat as his capacious stomach would hold,
he left the camp, and started into the mountain.

The next day our hunters started on their journey down the river,
travelling leisurely, and stopping wherever good grass presented
itself. One morning they suddenly struck a wheel trail, which left
the creek banks and pursued a course at right angles to it, in the
direction of the "divide." Killbuck pronounced it but a few hours
old, and that of three waggons drawn by oxen.

"Wagh!" he exclaimed, "if them poor devils of Mormonites ain't going
head first into the Rapaho trap. They'll be 'gone beaver' afore long."

"Ay," said the strange hunter, "these are the waggons belonging to
old Brand, and he has started alone for Laramie. I hope nothing will
happen to them."

"Brand!" muttered La Bonté. "I knowed that name mighty well once,
years agone; and should hate the worst kind that mischief happened
to any one who bore it. This trail's as fresh as paint; and it goes
against me to let these simple critters help the Rapahos to their own
hair. This child feels like helping 'em out of the scrape. What do
you say, old hos?"

"I thinks with you, boy," answered Killbuck, "and go in for following
this waggon trail, and telling the poor critters that there's danger
ahead of them. What's your talk, stranger?"

"I go with you," shortly answered the latter; and both followed
quickly after La Bonté, who was already trotting smartly on the trail.

Meanwhile the three waggons, containing the household gods of the
Brand family, rumbled slowly over the rolling prairie, and towards
the upland ridge of the "divide," which, studded with dwarf pine
and cedar thickets, rose gradually before them. They travelled with
considerable caution, for already the quick eye of Antoine had
discovered recent Indian sign upon the trail, and, with mountain
quickness, had at once made it out to be that of a war party;
for there were no horses with them, and, after one or two of the
mocassin tracks, the mark of a rope which trailed upon the ground
was sufficient to show him that the Indians were provided with the
usual lasso of skin, with which to secure the horses stolen in the
expedition. The men of the party were consequently all mounted and
thoroughly armed, the waggons moved in a line abreast, and a sharp
look-out was kept on all sides. The women and children were all
consigned to the interior of the waggons; and the latter had also
guns in readiness, to take their part in the defence should an attack
be made.

However, they had seen no Indians, and no fresh sign, for two days
after they left the Boiling Spring River, and they began to think
they were well out of their neighbourhood. One evening they camped
on a creek called Black Horse, and, as usual, had corralled the
waggons, and forted as well as circumstances would permit, when
three or four Indians suddenly appeared on a bluff at a little
distance, and, making signals of peaceable intentions, approached
the camp. Most of the men were absent at the time, attending to the
cattle or collecting fuel, and only old Brand and one of his young
grandchildren, about fourteen years old, remained in camp. The
Indians were hospitably received, and regaled with a smoke, after
which they began to evince their curiosity by examining every article
lying about, and signifying their wishes that it should be given to
them. Finding their hints were not taken, they laid hold of several
things which took their fancies, and, amongst others, of the pot
which was boiling on the fire, and with which one of them was about
very coolly to walk off, when old Brand, who up to this moment had
retained possession of his temper, seized it out of the Indian's
hand, and knocked him down. One of the others instantly began to
draw the buckskin cover from his gun, and would no doubt have taken
summary vengeance for the insult offered to his companion, when Mary
Brand courageously stepped up to him, and, placing her left hand upon
the gun which he was in the act of uncovering, with the other pointed
a pistol at his breast.

Whether daunted by the bold act of the girl, or admiring her devotion
to her father, the Indian drew himself back, exclaimed "Howgh!" and
drew the cover again on his piece, went up to old Brand, who all this
time looked him sternly in the face, and, shaking him by the hand,
motioned at the same time to the others to be peaceable.

The other whites presently coming into camp, the Indians sat quietly
down by the fire, and, when the supper was ready, joined in the
repast, after which they gathered their buffalo robes about them,
and quietly withdrew. Meanwhile Antoine, knowing the treacherous
character of the savages, advised that the greatest precaution should
be taken to secure the stock; and before dark, therefore, all the
mules and horses were hobbled and secured within the corral, the
oxen being allowed to feed at liberty--for the Indians scarcely care
to trouble themselves with such cattle. A guard was also set round
the camp, and relieved every two hours; the fire was extinguished,
lest the savages should fire, by its light, at any of the party,
and all slept with rifles ready at their sides. However, the night
passed quietly, and nothing disturbed the tranquillity of the camp.
The prairie wolves loped hungrily around, and their mournful cry
was borne upon the wind as they chased deer and antelope on the
neighbouring plain; but not a sign of lurking Indians was seen or
heard.

In the morning, shortly after sunrise, they were in the act of yoking
the oxen to the waggons, and driving in the loose animals which
had been turned out to feed at daybreak, when some Indians again
appeared upon the bluff, and, descending it, confidently approached
the camp. Antoine strongly advised their not being allowed to enter;
but Brand, ignorant of Indian treachery, replied that, so long as
they came as friends they could not be deemed enemies, and allowed no
obstruction to be offered to their approach. It was now observed that
they were all painted, armed with bows and arrows, and divested of
their buffalo robes, appearing naked to the breech-clout, their legs
only being protected by deerskin leggings, reaching to the middle of
the thigh. Six or seven first arrived, and others quickly followed,
dropping in one after the other, until a score or more were collected
round the waggons. Their demeanour, at first friendly, soon changed
as their numbers increased, and they now became urgent in their
demands for powder and lead, and bullying in their manner. A chief
accosted Brand, and, through Antoine, informed him "that, unless the
demands of his braves were acceded to, he could not be responsible
for the consequences; that they were out on the 'war-trail,' and
their eyes were red with blood, so that they could not distinguish
between white and Yutah scalps; that the party, with all their
women and waggons, were in the power of the Indian 'braves,' and
therefore the white chief's best plan was to make the best terms he
could; that all they required was that they should give up their
guns and ammunition 'on the prairie,' and all their mules and
horses--retaining the 'medicine' buffaloes (the oxen) to draw their
waggons."

By this time the oxen were yoked, and the teamsters, whip in hand,
only waited the word to start. Old Brand foamed whilst the Indian
stated his demands, but, hearing him to the end, exclaimed, "Darn the
red devil! I wouldn't give him a grain of powder to save my life. Put
out, boys!"--and, turning to his horse, which stood ready saddled,
was about to mount, when the Indians sprang at once upon the waggons,
and commenced their attack, yelling like fiends.

One jumped upon old Brand, pulled him back as he was rising in the
stirrup, and drew his bow upon him at the same moment. In an instant
the old backwoodsman pulled a pistol from his belt, and, putting
the muzzle to the Indian's heart, shot him dead. Another Indian,
flourishing his war-club, laid the old man at his feet; whilst others
dragged the women from the waggons, and others rushed upon the men,
who made brave fight in their defence.

Mary, when she saw her father struck to the ground, sprang with a
shrill cry to his assistance; for at that moment a savage, frightful
as red paint could make him, was standing over his prostrate body,
brandishing a glittering knife in the air, preparatory to thrusting
it into the old man's breast. For the rest, all was confusion--in
vain the small party of whites struggled against overpowering
numbers. Their rifles cracked but once, and they were quickly
disarmed; whilst the shrieks of the women and children, and the loud
yells of the Indians, added to the scene of horror and confusion. As
Mary flew to her father's side, an Indian threw his lasso at her,
the noose falling over her shoulders, and, jerking it tight, he
uttered a delighted yell as the poor girl was thrown back violently
to the ground. As she fell, another deliberately shot an arrow at her
body, whilst the one who had thrown the lasso rushed forward, his
scalp-knife flashing in his hand, to seize the bloody trophy of his
savage deed. The girl rose to her knees, and looked wildly towards
the spot where her father lay bathed in blood; but the Indian pulled
the rope violently, dragged her some yards upon the ground, and then
rushed with a yell of vengeance upon his victim. He paused, however,
as at that moment a shout as fierce as his own sounded at his very
ear; and, looking up, he saw La Bonté gallopping madly down the
bluff, his long hair and the fringes of his hunting-shirt and leggins
flying in the wind, his right arm supporting his trusty rifle,
whilst close behind him came Killbuck and the stranger. Dashing
with loud hurrahs to the scene of action, La Bonté, as he charged
down the bluff, caught sight of the girl struggling in the hands of
the ferocious Indian. Loud was the war-shout of the mountaineer, as
he struck his heavy spurs to the rowels in his horse's side, and
bounded like lightning to the rescue. In a single stride he was upon
the Indian, and, thrusting the muzzle of his rifle into his very
breast, he pulled the trigger, driving the savage backward by the
blow itself, at the same moment that the bullet passed through his
heart, and tumbled him over stone-dead. Throwing down his rifle, La
Bonté wheeled his obedient horse, and, drawing a pistol from his
belt, again charged the enemy, into the midst of whom Killbuck and
the stranger were dealing death-giving blows. Yelling for victory,
the mountaineers rushed at the Indians; and they, panic-struck at
the sudden attack, and thinking this was but the advanced guard of a
large band, fairly turned and fled, leaving five of their number dead
upon the field.

Mary, shutting her eyes to the expected death-stroke, heard the loud
shout La Bonté gave in charging down the bluff, and, again looking
up, saw the wild-looking mountaineer rush to her rescue, and save her
from the savage by his timely blow. Her arms were still pinned by the
lasso, which prevented her from rising to her feet; and La Bonté was
the first to run to aid her, as soon as the fight was fairly over.
He jumped from his horse, cut the skin rope which bound her, raised
her from the ground, and, upon her turning up her face to thank him,
beheld his never-to-be-forgotten Mary Brand; whilst she, hardly
believing her senses, recognised in her deliverer her former lover,
and still well-beloved La Bonté.

"What, Mary! can it be you?" he asked, looking intently upon the
trembling woman.

"La Bonté, you don't forget me!" she answered, and threw herself
sobbing into the arms of the sturdy mountaineer.

There we will leave her for the present, and help Killbuck and
his companions to examine the killed and wounded. Of the former,
five Indians and two whites lay dead, grandchildren of old Brand,
fine lads of fourteen or fifteen, who had fought with the greatest
bravery, and lay pierced with arrows and lance wounds. Old Brand had
received a sore buffet, but a hatful of cold water from the creek
sprinkled over his face soon restored him. His sons had not escaped
scot-free, and Antoine was shot through the neck, and, falling, had
actually been half scalped by an Indian, whom the timely arrival of
La Bonté had caused to leave his work unfinished.

Silently, and with sad hearts, the survivors of the family saw
the bodies of the two boys buried on the river bank, and the spot
marked with a pile of loose stones, procured from the rocky bed of
the creek. The carcasses of the treacherous Indians were left to
be devoured by wolves, and their bones to bleach in the sun and
wind--a warning to their tribe, that such foul treachery as they had
meditated had met with a merited retribution.

The next day the party continued their course to the Platte. Antoine
and the stranger returned to the Arkansa, starting in the night
to avoid the Indians; but Killbuck and La Bonté lent the aid of
their rifles to the solitary caravan, and, under their experienced
guidance, no more Indian perils were encountered. Mary no longer
sat perched up in her father's Conostoga, but rode a quiet mustang
by La Bonté's side; and no doubt they found a theme with which to
while away the monotonous journey over the dreary plains. South Fork
was passed, and Laramie was reached. The Sweet Water mountains,
which hang over the "pass" to California, were long since in sight;
but when the waters of the North Fork of Platte lay before their
horses' feet, and the broad trail was pointed out which led to the
great valley of Columbia and their promised land, the heads of the
oxen were turned _down_ the stream, where the shallow waters flow
on to join the great Missouri--and not _up_, towards the mountains
where they leave their spring-heads, from which springs flow several
waters--some coursing their way to the eastward, fertilising, in
their route to the Atlantic, the lands of civilised man; others
westward, forcing a passage through rocky cañons, and flowing through
a barren wilderness, inhabited by fierce and barbarous tribes.

These were the routes to choose from: and, whatever was the cause,
the oxen turned their yoked heads away from the rugged mountains;
the teamsters joyfully cracked their ponderous whips, as the waggons
rolled lightly down the Platte; and men, women, and children, waved
their hats and bonnets in the air, and cried out lustily, "Hurrah for
home!"

La Bonté looked at the dark sombre mountains ere he turned his
back upon them for the last time. He thought of the many years he
had spent beneath their rugged shadow, of the many hardships he
had suffered, of all his pains and perils undergone in those wild
regions. The most exciting episodes in his adventurous career, his
tried companions in scenes of fierce fight and bloodshed, passed in
review before him. A feeling of regret was creeping over him, when
Mary laid her hand gently on his shoulder. One single tear rolled
unbidden down his cheek, and he answered her inquiring eyes: "I'm not
sorry to leave it, Mary," he said; "but it's hard to turn one's back
upon old friends."

They had a hard battle with Killbuck, in endeavouring to persuade
him to accompany them to the settlements. The old mountaineer shook
his head. "The time," he said, "was gone by for that. He had often
thought of it, but, when the day arrived, he hadn't heart to leave
the mountains. Trapping now was of no account, he knew; but beaver
was bound to rise, and then the good times would come again. What
could he do in the settlements, where there wasn't room to move, and
where it was hard to breathe--there were so many people?"

He accompanied them a considerable distance down the river, ever and
anon looking cautiously back, to ascertain that he had not gone out
of sight of the mountains. Before reaching the forks, however, he
finally bade them adieu; and, turning the head of his old grizzled
mule westward, he heartily wrung the hand of his comrade La Bonté;
and, crying Yep! to his well-tried animal, disappeared behind a roll
of the prairie, and was seen no more--a thousand good wishes for the
welfare of the sturdy trapper speeding him on his solitary way.

Four months from the day when La Bonté so opportunely appeared to
rescue Brand's family from the Indians on Black Horse Creek, that
worthy and the faithful Mary were duly and lawfully united in the
township church of Brandville, Memphis county, State of Tennessee. We
cannot say, in the concluding words of nine hundred and ninety-nine
thousand novels, that "numerous pledges of mutual love surrounded
and cheered them in their declining years," &c. &c.; because it was
only on the 24th of July, in the year of our Lord 1847, that La Bonté
and Mary Brand were finally made one, after fifteen long years of
separation.

       *       *       *       *       *

The fate of one of the humble characters who have figured in these
pages, we must yet tarry a while longer to describe.

During the past winter, a party of mountaineers, flying from
overpowering numbers of hostile Sioux, found themselves, one stormy
evening, in a wild and dismal cañon near the elevated mountain valley
called the "New Park."

The rocky bed of a dry mountain torrent, whose waters were now
locked up at their spring-heads by icy fetters, was the only road up
which they could make their difficult way: for the rugged sides of
the gorge rose precipitously from the creek, scarcely affording a
foot-hold to even the active bighorn, which occasionally looked down
upon the travellers from the lofty summit. Logs of pine, uprooted
by the hurricanes which sweep incessantly through the mountain
defiles, and tossed headlong from the surrounding ridges, continually
obstructed their way; and huge rocks and boulders, tumbling from
the heights and blocking up the bed of the stream, added to the
difficulty, and threatened them every instant with destruction.

Towards sundown they reached a point where the cañon opened out into
a little shelving glade or prairie, a few hundred yards in extent,
the entrance to which was almost hidden by a thicket of dwarf pine
and cedar. Here they determined to encamp for the night, in a spot
secure from Indians, and, as they imagined, untrodden by the foot of
man.

What, however, was their astonishment, on breaking through the
cedar-covered entrance, to perceive a solitary horse standing
motionless in the centre of the prairie. Drawing near, they found it
to be an old grizzled mustang, or Indian pony, with cropped ears and
ragged tail, (well picked by hungry mules,) standing doubled up with
cold, and at the very last gasp from extreme old age and weakness.
Its bones were nearly through the stiffened skin, the legs of the
animal were gathered under it; whilst its forlorn-looking head and
stretched-out neck hung listlessly downwards, almost overbalancing
its tottering body. The glazed and sunken eye--the protruding and
froth-covered tongue--the heaving flank and quivering tail--declared
its race was run; and the driving sleet and snow, and penetrating
winter blast, scarce made impression upon its callous, insensible,
and worn-out frame.

One of the band of mountaineers was Marcellin, and a single look
at the miserable beast was sufficient for him to recognise the
once renowned Nez-percé steed of old Bill Williams. That the owner
himself was not far distant he felt certain; and, searching carefully
around, the hunters presently came upon an old deserted camp, before
which lay, protruding from the snow, the blackened remains of pine
logs. Before these, which had been the fire, and leaning with his
back against a pine trunk, and his legs crossed under him, half
covered with snow, reclined the figure of the old mountaineer, his
snow-capped head bent over his breast. His well-known hunting-coat of
fringed elk-skin hung stiff and weather-stained about him; and his
rifle, packs, and traps, were strewed around.

Awe-struck, the trappers approached the body, and found it frozen
hard as stone, in which state it had probably lain there for many
days or weeks. A jagged rent in the breast of his leather coat, and
dark stains about it, showed he had received a wound before his
death; but it was impossible to say whether to this hurt, or to
sickness, or to the natural decay of age, was to be attributed the
wretched and solitary end of poor Bill Williams.

A friendly bullet cut short the few remaining hours of the trapper's
faithful steed; and burying, as well as they were able, the body of
the old mountaineer, the hunters next day left him in his lonely
grave, in a spot so wild and remote, that it was doubtful whether
even hungry wolves would discover and disinter his attenuated corpse.

FOOTNOTES:

[2] The word _fandango_, in New Mexico, is not applied to the
peculiar dance known in Spain by that name, but designates a ball or
dancing meeting.

[3] Nickname for the idle fellows hanging about a Mexican town,
translated into "Greasers" by the Americans.

[4] Cask-shaped gourds.

[5] The knives used by the hunters and trappers are manufactured at
the "Green River" works, and have that name stamped upon the blade.
Hence the mountain term for doing any thing effectually is "up to
Green River."

[6] Always alluding to Mexicans, who are invariably called Spaniards
by the Western Americans.



THE LATE GEORGE FREDERICK RUXTON.


The readers of _Blackwood's Magazine_, who for six succeeding
months have followed La Bonté and his mountain companions through
the hardships, humours, and perils of "Life in the Far West," will
surely not learn with indifference, that the gallant young author of
those spirited sketches has prematurely departed to his long home,
from that Transatlantic land whose prairies and forests he so well
loved to tread, and the existence and eccentricities of whose wildest
sons he so ably and pleasantly portrayed. Nearly a month has now
elapsed since the London newspapers contained the mournful tidings
of the death, at St Louis on the Mississippi, and at the early age
of twenty-eight, of Lieutenant George Frederick Ruxton, formerly
of her Majesty's 89th regiment, known to the reading world as the
author of a volume of Mexican adventure, and of the above-named
contributions to this Magazine. The former work has too completely
gained the suffrages of the public to need commendation at our hands:
it divides, with Madame Calderon de la Barca's well-known volumes,
the merit of being the best narration extant of travel and general
observation in modern Mexico.

Many individuals, even in the most enterprising periods of our
history, have been made the subjects of elaborate biography, with
far less title to the honour than our late departed friend. Time
was not granted him to embody in a permanent shape more than a
tithe of his personal experiences, and strange adventures, in three
quarters of the globe; indeed, when we consider the amount of
physical labour which he endured, and the extent of the fields over
which his wanderings were spread, we are almost led to wonder how
he could have found leisure even to have written so much. At the
early age of seventeen, Mr Ruxton quitted Sandwich, to learn the
practical part of a soldier's profession on the field of civil war
then raging in the peninsula of Spain. He received a commission in
a royal regiment of lancers, under the command of Don Diego Leon,
and was actively engaged in several of the most important combats
of the campaign. For his marked gallantry on these occasions, he
received from Queen Isabella II. the cross of the first class of the
order of St Fernando, an honour which has seldom been awarded to one
so young. On his return from Spain he found himself gazetted to a
commission in the 89th regiment; and it was while serving with that
distinguished corps in Canada that he first became acquainted with
the stirring scenes of Indian life, which he has since so graphically
portrayed. His eager and enthusiastic spirit soon became wearied with
the monotony of the barrack-room; and, yielding to that impulse which
in him was irresistibly developed, he resigned his commission, and
directed his steps towards the stupendous wilds, only tenanted by the
red Indian, or the solitary American trapper.

Those who are familiar with his writings cannot fail to have
remarked the singular delight with which the author dwells upon the
recollections of this portion of his career, and the longing which
he carried with him to the hour of death, for a return to those
scenes of primitive freedom. "Although liable to an accusation of
barbarism," he writes, "I must confess that the very happiest moments
of my life have been spent in the wilderness of the Far West; and
I never recall, but with pleasure, the remembrance of my solitary
camp in the Bayou Salade, with no friend near me more faithful than
my rifle, and no companions more sociable than my good horse and
mules, or the attendant cayute which nightly serenaded us. With a
plentiful supply of dry pine-logs on the fire, and its cheerful
blaze streaming far up into the sky, illuminating the valley far and
near, and exhibiting the animals, with well-filled bellies, standing
contentedly at rest over their picket-fires, I would sit cross-legged
enjoying the genial warmth, and, pipe in mouth, watch the blue smoke
as it curled upwards, building castles in its vapoury wreaths, and,
in the fantastic shapes it assumed, peopling the solitude with
figures of those far away. Scarcely, however, did I ever wish to
change such hours of freedom for all the luxuries of civilised life;
and, unnatural and extraordinary as it may appear, yet such is the
fascination of the life of the mountain hunter, that I believe not
one instance could be adduced of even the most polished and civilised
of men, who had once tasted the sweets of its attendant liberty,
and freedom from every worldly care, not regretting the moment when
he exchanged it for the monotonous life of the settlements, nor
sighing and sighing again once more to partake of its pleasures and
allurements."

On his return to Europe from the Far West, Mr Ruxton, animated with
a spirit as enterprising and fearless as that of Raleigh, planned
a scheme for the exploration of Central Africa, which was thus
characterised by the president of the Royal Geographical Society, in
his anniversary address for 1845:--"To my great surprise, I recently
conversed with an ardent and accomplished youth, Lieutenant Ruxton,
late of the 89th regiment, who had formed the daring project of
traversing Africa in the parallel of the southern tropic, and has
actually started for this purpose. Preparing himself by previous
excursions on foot, in North Africa and Algeria, he sailed from
Liverpool early in December last, in the Royalist, for Ichaboe. From
that spot he was to repair to Walvish Bay, where we have already
mercantile establishments. The intrepid traveller had received from
their agents of the establishments such favourable account of the
nations towards the interior, as also of the nature of the climate,
that he has the most sanguine hopes of being able to penetrate to the
central region, if not of traversing it to the Portuguese colonies
of Mozambique. If this be accomplished, then indeed will Lieutenant
Ruxton have acquired for himself a permanent name among British
travellers, by making us acquainted with the nature of the axis of
the great continent of which we possess the southern extremity."

In pursuance of this hazardous scheme, Ruxton, along with a single
companion, landed on the coast of Africa, a little to the south of
Ichaboe, and commenced his journey of exploration. But it seemed as
if both nature and man had combined to baffle the execution of his
design. The course of their travel lay along a desert of moving sand,
where no water was to be found, and little herbage, save a coarse
tufted grass, and twigs of the resinous myrrh. The immediate place
of their destination was Angra Peguena, on the coast, described as
a frequented station, but which in reality was deserted. One ship
only was in the offing when the travellers arrived, and, to their
inexpressible mortification, they discovered that she was outward
bound. No trace was visible of the river or streams laid down in
the maps as falling into the sea at this point, and no resource
was left to the travellers save that of retracing their steps--a
labour for which their strength was hardly adequate. But for the
opportune assistance of a body of natives, who encountered them at
the very moment when they were sinking from the influence of fatigue
and thirst, Ruxton and his companion would have been added to the
catalogue long of those whose lives have been sacrificed in the
attempt to explore the interior of this fatal country.

The jealousy of the traders, and of the missionaries settled on the
African coast, who constantly withheld or perverted that information
which was absolutely necessary for the successful prosecution of the
journey, induced Ruxton to abandon the attempt for the present. He
made, however, several interesting excursions towards the interior,
and more especially in the country of the Bosjesmans.

Finding that his own resources were inadequate for the accomplishment
of his favourite project, Mr Ruxton, on his return to England, made
application for Government assistance. But though this demand was
not altogether refused, it having been referred to, and favourably
reported on by, the Council of the Royal Geographical Society, so
many delays were interposed that Ruxton, in disgust, resolved to
withdraw from the scheme, and to abandon that field of African
research which he had already contemplated from its borders. He
next bent his steps to Mexico; and, fortunately, has presented to
the world his reminiscences of that country, in one of the most
fascinating volumes which, of late years, has issued from the press.
It would, however, appear that the scheme of African research, the
darling project of his life, had again recurred to him at a later
period; for, in the course of the present spring, before setting
out on that journey which was destined to be his last we find the
following expressions in a letter addressed to us:--

     "My movements are uncertain, for I am trying to get up a yacht
     voyage to Borneo and the Indian Archipelago; have volunteered
     to Government to explore Central Africa; and the Aborigines
     Protection Society wish me to go out to Canada to organise the
     Indian tribes; whilst, for my own part and inclination, I wish to
     go to all parts of the world at once."

As regards his second work, we shall not, under the circumstances, be
deemed egotistical, if we here, at the close of its final portion,
express our very high opinion of its merits. Written by a man
untrained to literature, and whose life, from a very early age, had
been passed in the field and on the road, in military adventure and
travel, its style is yet often as remarkable for graphic terseness
and vigour, as its substance every where is for great novelty and
originality. The narrative of "Life in the Far West" was first
offered for insertion in _Blackwood's Magazine_ in the spring of the
present year, when the greater portion of the manuscript was sent,
and the remainder shortly followed.

The wildness of the adventures which he relates have, perhaps not
unnaturally, excited suspicions in certain quarters as to their
actual truth and fidelity. It may interest our readers to know, that
the scenes described by the author are faithful pictures of the
results of his personal experience. The following are extracts from
letters addressed to us in the course of last summer:--

     "I have brought out a few more softening traits in the characters
     of the mountaineers--but not at the sacrifice of truth--for some
     of them have their good points; which, as they are rarely allowed
     to rise to the surface, must be laid hold of at once, before they
     sink again. Killbuck--that 'old hos' _par exemple_, was really
     pretty much of a gentleman, as was La Bonté. Bill Williams,
     another 'hard case,' and Rube Herring, were 'some' too.

     "The scene where La Bonté joins the Chase family is so far true
     that he did make a sudden appearance; but, in reality, a day
     before the Indian attack. The Chases (and I wish I had not given
     the proper name[7]) did start for the Platte alone, and were
     stampedoed upon the waters of the Platte.

     "The Mexican fandango _is true to the letter_. It does seem
     difficult to understand how they contrived to keep their knives
     out of the hump-ribs of the mountaineers; but how can you account
     for the fact that, the other day, 4000 Mexicans, with 13 pieces of
     artillery, behind strong intrenchments and two lines of parapets,
     were routed by 900 raw Missourians; 300 killed, as many more
     wounded, all their artillery captured, as well as several hundred
     prisoners; and that not one American was killed in the affair?
     _This is positive fact._

     "I myself, with three trappers, cleared a fandango at Taos, armed
     only with bowie-knives--some score Mexicans, at least, being in
     the room.

     "With regard to the incidents of Indian attacks, starvation,
     cannibalism, &c., I have invented not one out of my own head. They
     are all matters of history in the mountains; but I have, no doubt,
     jumbled the _dramatis personæ_ one with another, and may have
     committed anachronisms in the order of their occurrence."

Again he wrote to us as follows:--

     "I think it would be as well to correct a misapprehension as to
     the truth or fiction of the paper. It is _no fiction_. There is no
     incident in it which has not actually occurred, nor one character
     who is not well known in the Rocky Mountains, with the exception
     of two whose names are changed--the originals of these being,
     however, equally well known with the others."

His last letter, written just before his departure from England, a
few weeks previously to his death, will hardly be read by any who
ever knew the writer, without a tear of sympathy with the sad fate of
this fine young man, dying miserably in a strange land, before he had
well commenced the adventurous journey whose excitement and dangers
he so joyously anticipated:--

     "As you say, human natur can't go on feeding on civilised fixings
     in this 'big village;' and this child has felt like going West
     for many a month, being half froze for buffler meat and mountain
     doins. My route takes me viâ New York, the Lakes, and St Louis, to
     Fort Leavenworth, or Independence on the Indian frontier. Thence
     packing my 'possibles' on a mule, and mounting a buffalo horse,
     (Panchito, if he is alive,) I strike the Santa Fé trail to the
     Arkansa, away up that river to the mountains, winter in the Bayou
     Salade, where Killbuck and La Bonté joined the Yutes, cross the
     mountains next spring to Great Salt Lake--and that's far enough
     to look forward to--always supposing my hair is not lifted by
     Comanche or Pawnee on the scalping route of the Coon Creeks and
     Pawnee Fork.

     "If anything turns up in the expedition which would 'shine' in
     Maga, I will send you a despatch.--Meanwhile," &c. &c.

Poor fellow! he spoke lightly, in the buoyancy of youth and a
confident spirit, of the fate he little thought to meet, but which
too surely overtook him--not indeed by Indian blade, but by the no
less deadly stroke of disease. Another motive, besides that love of
rambling and adventure, which, once conceived and indulged, is so
difficult to eradicate, impelled him across the Atlantic. He had for
some time been out of health at intervals, and he thought the air
of his beloved prairies would be efficacious to work a cure. In a
letter to a friend, in the month of May last, he thus referred to the
probable origin of the evil:--

     "I have been confined to my room for many days, from the effects
     of an accident I met with in the Rocky Mountains, having been
     spilt from the bare back of a mule, and falling on the sharp
     picket of an Indian lodge on the small of my back. I fear I
     injured my spine, for I have never felt altogether the thing
     since, and shortly after I saw you, the symptoms became rather
     ugly. However, I am now getting round again."

His medical advisers shared his opinion that he had sustained
internal injury from this ugly fall; and it is not improbable
that it was the remote, but real cause of his dissolution. Up to
this time of writing, (21st October,) however, no details of his
death have reached his afflicted friends, nor any account of it,
other than that given by the public journals. From whatsoever it
ensued, it will be a source of deep and lasting regret to all who
ever enjoyed opportunities of appreciating the high and sterling
qualities of George Frederick Ruxton. Few men, so prepossessing
on first acquaintance, gained so much by being better known. With
great natural abilities, and the most dauntless bravery, he united
a modesty and gentleness peculiarly pleasing. Had he lived, and
resisted his friends' repeated solicitations to abandon a roving
life, and settle down in England, there can be little doubt that
he would have made his name eminent on the list of those daring
and persevering men, whose travels in distant and dangerous lands
have accumulated for England, and for the world, so rich a store of
scientific and general information. And, although the few words we
have thought it right and becoming here to devote to his memory,
will doubtless be more particularly welcome to his personal friends,
we are persuaded that none will peruse without interest this brief
tribute to the merits of a gallant soldier, and accomplished English
gentleman.

FOOTNOTE:

[7] In accordance with this suggestion, the name was changed to
Brand. The mountaineers, it seems, are more sensitive to type than
to tomahawks; and poor Ruxton, who always contemplated another
expedition among them, would sometimes jestingly speculate upon his
reception, should they learn that he had shown them up in print.



THE NAVAL WAR OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION.[8]


The navy of England is the right arm of the British empire. The
gallantry of British troops requires no praise of ours, as it admits
of no doubt on the part of our enemies. But until some convulsion of
the globe shall make England _Continental_, so long must her chief
force be naval, her chief defence be by her strength at sea, and her
chief victories be gained on the ocean.

The navy has another incomparable adaptation to the especial
circumstances of England. Her empire is colonial: the extent of Great
Britain itself scarcely equals one of those provinces beyond the
ocean which Providence has given into her hands. Their defence, their
maintenance, and their existence, must depend on the superiority of
our fleet: if it were once extinguished, the British empire must be
again contracted within the British Isles.

A third, and perhaps a more important qualification than either,
is--that a fleet is the only form of national force which can _never_
endanger national freedom.

On those _data_, the question of _national_ fleets is easily decided.
England is not only the first naval power in the world, but she
must _continue_ the first; because a fleet is _necessary_ to her
existence, which _it is not_ to that of any other European throne.
This is the dictate of nature, and is therefore a _law_. Other powers
may possess a fleet as an appendage to their national strength, as
suitable to their rank, or as adding to their means of hostilities.
Still, to them, a fleet is not a _necessity_. Russia, France, and
Spain have no more _necessity_ for a fleet, than Prussia, Austria,
and Switzerland! But England, without a fleet, would be exposed to
invasion on every point of a coast extending two thousand miles. Her
wealth is all loose upon the ocean; her chief territories are all
beyond the ocean: thus, _without_ a fleet, she would be almost wholly
without the means of external defence, of retaliation for injuries,
and of the commerce which is the most essential basis of her revenue.
The result is, that, while the Continental kingdoms might be powerful
states, yet not possess a ship on the seas, England, stript of her
naval superiority, would instantly sink from her high position,
would lose the larger portion of her power, would be separated from
her most important colonies, would see her revenues decay,--and,
if assailed by a foreign enemy, would see her resources suddenly
stopped, and must prepare for the last extremities of struggle, hand
to hand.

In this view, we do not confine the question to the national fondness
for the sea--to that mixture of boldness and skill which predominates
in the character of our sailors, and forms the especial qualification
of a sea-faring people,--nor to national superiority of any kind;
but to the simple fact, that the possession of predominant power on
the ocean _cannot_ be dispensed with by England, while it _can_ be
dispensed with by every other power of the globe.

There is also another reason for this supremacy; arising from the
fact, that England may throw her whole national force into a navy;
while other powers, however ambitious of naval eminence, _must_ at
least divide their force between the land and sea services. France,
with its immense frontier, must keep up an immense army during war.
Russia, with a frontier from the Niemen to the North Pole, must keep
up an immense army at all times. The maintenance of those armies
is essential to the national existence, while the maintenance of a
fleet is only gratifying to the national ambition. The consequence
is as clear as a matter of arithmetic. France and Russia, attacking
England separately, _must_ be ultimately beaten. America, even if she
were a more formidable opponent than either, will also be beaten, and
for the same reason. A fleet is not _essential_ to her; the undivided
force of the States will never be applied to her navy. The national
strength will be expanded over inland conquest; the sea-coast towns
will be rapidly reduced to insignificance by the superiority of the
great inland settlements; and the time will come, when the cities of
New York, Philadelphia, and Boston, will have no more weight with
the inland powers of Louisiana and the prairies, than Brighton or
Broadstairs have with the power of London. They will be watering
places, or, at best, warehousing places, and will be no more able to
keep up a navy, than the Isle of Thanet would be able to keep up the
Channel fleet. All this, however, tends only to show, that a fleet is
the supreme instrument of British dominion; and that its strength,
its skill, and its discipline, should employ the utmost activity,
liberality, and vigilance of every Cabinet which desires to do its
duty to the empire.

We now proceed to give some account of the interesting and
intelligent work of which Captain Plunket has supplied the
translation, accompanied with valuable explanatory notes of his own.

Some time since, there appeared in the well-known Parisian _Revue des
deux Mondes_, articles on the English and French naval systems, by a
French officer, Captain de la Gravière. The object of those papers
was less to give a history of the naval war, than to ascertain the
causes of that almost unbroken series of triumphs which made the
fame of the British fleet; and, on the other hand, which ultimately
extinguished the fleet of a nation so brave, ambitious, and
enterprising as the French.

M. de la Gravière, to his credit, had not followed the usual
"perfide Albion" style of the French journalists, nor exhibited
that jesuitical evasion of fact, and the perpetual peevishness
against England, which marks and disgraces French history. He never
sinks English success into failure, or inflates French failure
into victory. He writes with the calmness of a man in search of
the truth; judges with every visible _intention_ of impartiality;
examines the private documents of the transactions; and pronounces a
judgment which, though obviously and essentially _French_, is perhaps
as honest an effort in pursuit of the reality of things, as is
compatible with the nature of our clever and lively libellers on the
other side of the Channel.

Those volumes begin by some striking remarks of Napoleon at St
Helena. This extraordinary man never spoke of his defeat at Acre in
1799 but with bitter regret. He declared that it was his intention,
had he taken that fortress, to have marched to Constantinople at the
head of the tribes of Mount Lebanon, or to have followed the steps
of Alexander to the Indus. His repulse from Acre, he always said,
"marred his destiny."

All this verbiage of the great Captain, however, has been
sufficiently exposed by the actual event. He could no more have
marched to Constantinople than he could have marched to the Indus,
nor have marched to the Indus more than he could have marched to
the Pole star. With but 40,000 men, (the whole number which landed
in Egypt,) it would have been utterly impossible for him to have
carried a force through Syria and Asia Minor equal to the attack on
Constantinople--even if the Russians were not _at hand_. The march to
the Indus would have lain through the deserts of Arabia and Persia,
and have stripped him down to a corporal's guard before he had got
half-way. A French foot would never have been dipt in that far-famed
river, which is now a British Canal. The tribes of Lebanon would no
more have recruited his ranks, than they would have given him their
sequins. His destiny lay in another direction. No man knew this
better; and doubtless he rejoiced, when he found himself on board the
frigate carrying him westward, and relieving him of the "glory" of
being slaughtered by the Arabs, and embalmed by the sands.

But the inveterate hostility of Napoleon seemed to rage against
England, with the ravening of a mad dog, who dies biting the club
which has laid him on the ground. All his anti-English policy was a
succession of gross and ruinous blunders. To assail England without
a fleet was naturally impossible. To form a fleet for the purpose of
assailing her was, therefore, always a new temptation. If, after the
First of June, which destroyed the Channel fleet of France, and the
burning of the arsenals of Toulon, which destroyed her Mediterranean
fleet, France had never built another vessel beyond the tonnage of a
coaster, she would have shown her good sense. But Napoleon, when in
the plenitude of power, went on building huge vessels, only to see
them sent into English ports.

The waste of time, waste of thought, and waste of money, on those
projects of English invasion, were among the most capital faults of
his extravagant career. He might have made France the great corn
country, or the great garden of Europe, with half the sums which he
threw away only to be beaten. His fifty ships of the line which were
to sweep the Channel, in the absence of our fleet--his one hundred
and twenty thousand men on the shore of Boulogne--all only enhanced
the naval glory of the great commander; who, after pursuing the
French flying squadron of eighteen great ships, with ten, to the West
Indies, finished in one day the naval war, extinguished the existence
of the French and Spanish navies, and crowned his own gallant career.

The impolicy of these attempts was equally exhibited in another
form--they stimulated at once the power and the spirit of England.
The monotony of a war of defence would have disgusted the gallantry
of the nation, but the victories of the British navy continually
cheered the people under the burdens of the war. What minister could
have dared to propose a "compromising" peace, on the day after the
battle of the Nile? What minister would have dared to propose any
peace on the day after Trafalgar? The war, too, broke down more than
the French fleet--it buried the Opposition.

The French author divides his history into three periods--the first,
that of the battles of Howe and Hood, of Hotham and Bridport; the
second, that of Jervis; the third, (from 1798 to 1805) belonging
to Nelson, without an equal, without even a competitor--the most
glorious series of successes ever won on the ocean.

The true definition of these volumes is, in fact, a "Life of
Nelson"--a hurried, but clear and animated memoir, on a subject
which can never be too often repeated to the ear or the heart of
Englishmen; but a subject which is here coloured with the inevitable,
and yet not unamusing, prejudices of a Frenchman and an enemy.
He admits Nelson to have been a naval hero, while he labours to
show that his chief successes arose from a lofty disregard of
circumstances, a native contempt of rule, a transcendental rashness,
which, continually exposing him to the chance of utter ruin,
strangely always issued in victory. But those views are wholly
imaginary. It is the foreign habit, to be perpetually in pursuit of
_astonishment_; to think nothing meritorious which is not _magical_;
and to carry into the greatest and gravest operations of public life
the passion for the harlequinades of the theatre. The supremacy
of Nelson arose from the more substantial grounds, of a thorough
knowledge of his profession, of a strict deference for discipline,
and a sort of instinctive and unhesitating determination to do the
work set before him, with all the powers of his mind and frame.
He, of course, possessed personal intrepidity in the most complete
degree; but this amounted simply to the exposure of his life on all
occasions where duty was to be done. Nelson was no fire-eater--no
man of quarrel. We are not aware that he ever fought a duel. But he
knew what was due to himself as much as any man--a fact shown by his
answer to the Governor of Jamaica, who, having, on some remonstrances
to him, rather haughtily observed, "that old generals were not
accustomed to take advice from young captains." Nelson retorted
by letter--"That he was of the same age as the prime minister of
England, (Pitt), and that he thought himself as capable of commanding
one of his Majesty's ships, as the premier was of governing the
state."

But Nelson could not have gained his glories alone: he made his
captains like himself; and every sailor in his fleet was ready to
die along with him. His art in this was the simple one of justice.
He acknowledged every man's merit. The officer who distinguished
himself, was sure of receiving due honour from Nelson; promotion
was regulated by service, and every brave man was confident in the
recommendation of the admiral. He was also a kind man by nature: he
hated punishment on board; he spoke good-naturedly to the sailors;
he even gave way to any peculiarity which was not injurious to
discipline. Some of his crew had become Methodists, and, offended
with the general coarse conversation of the ship, desired to have
their mess separate. Nelson immediately gave the required permission.
The hearts of men naturally follow such a leader.

He had also the powerful sagacity which insures confidence; and no
man doubted that, when Nelson commanded, he was leading to victory.
He was, besides, a master of his profession--all his battles were the
finest lessons of the tactician. He was never outmanoeuvred; he
was never surprised; he was never even thrown into any difficulty,
for which he had not a ready resource. The "Nelson touch" became
proverbial; and the variety, completeness, and brilliancy of his
plans for action sometimes excited the most extraordinary emotion,
even to tears, among his officers. Something of this kind is said to
have occurred on the final summoning of his captains into the cabin
of the Victory, and laying before them his plan for the battle of
Trafalgar.

Nelson had also the power, perhaps the most characteristic of
genius, of throwing his thought into those shapes of vividness which
penetrate at once to the understanding. When, on steering down for
the French line at Aboukir, some one observed to him that the enemy
were anchored too near the shore, for the British to pass within
them;--"Where a French ship can swing, a British ship can anchor,"
was his decisive reply; and he instantly rushed in, and placed
the French line between two fires. Another of those noble maxims
was--"The captain cannot be wrong, who lays his ship alongside the
enemy." It contains the whole theory of British battle. His "I can
see no signal," when he was told that Admiral Parker had made the
signal for retiring at Copenhagen, would have been immortalised,
with the act which accompanied it, among the most brilliant
"sayings and doings" of ancient Greece. But his last and well-known
signal at Trafalgar surpassed all the rest, as much as the triumph
surpassed these triumphs. The addresses of Napoleon to his armies
were unquestionably fine performances. They spoke to the Frenchman
by his feelings, his recollections, his personal pride, and his
national renown. But, with the animation of the trumpet, they had
its sternness and harshness. They were invocations to the French
idol, that was to be worshipped only with perpetual blood. But the
signal at Trafalgar recalled the Englishman only to the feelings of
home. The voice of war never spoke a language more capable of being
combined with all the purposes of peace. "England expects every man
to do his duty" was fitted to bring before the Englishman the memory
of his country, his home, his wife and children, all who might feel
concerned in his conduct and character in the proud transactions of
that great day. We think it the noblest appeal to national feeling
ever made by a warrior to warriors.

Yet, what was the especial secret of that supreme rank which Nelson
held over all the naval leaders of his time? Others may have been as
intelligent, and indefatigable, and, it is to be hoped, all were as
brave. The secret was--that Nelson was never satisfied with what he
had done, and that he never _half did_ anything. There was no "drawn
battle," among _his_ recollections. This is the more remarkable,
as, for fifty years before, nearly all our naval battles had been
drawn battles. Rodney's defeat of de Grasse was the great exception.
British admirals, who were afraid of nothing else, were afraid of
losing their masts! and were content with knocking down those of the
enemy. Great fleets met each other, passed in parallel lines, fired
their broadsides as they passed, one to the north and the other to
the south. They might as well have been firing salutes. The wind soon
carried them out of sight of each other; the admirals sat down in
their cabins to write their respective histories of "the battle,"
which would have been only too much honoured by being called a
_brush_; and the fleets went by mutual consent into harbour. In this
sort of _War_! the French were as clever as we; and the Suffreins, di
Guichens, d'Estaings, and Villeneuves, made their fame on this system
of cannonading a mile off, and getting out of the way as quickly as
possible.

Rodney first spoiled the etiquette of those affairs, by driving
straight forward through the enemy's line, changing the easy parallel
for the fighting perpendicular, and compelling at least one-half
of the Frenchmen to come to close quarters. This was the method of
Jervis, when his captain told him, that the fleet on which he was
bearing down in the morning twilight were at least twenty. "If they
were fifty," said the brave sailor, "I'll _drive through them_." He
drove through them accordingly, and beat the Spaniards, with half
their numbers.

Wellington observed, in the Peninsula, that the generals commanding
under him were afraid of nothing but responsibility. This fear
arose from the ignorant insolence, with which the loungers of the
legislature were in the habit of fighting campaigns over their
coffee-cups. It is to be hoped that the fashion has since changed.
But Wellington demurred to the authority, and Nelson seemed not to
have thought of its existence. They both supplied the sufficient
answer to the _home_ campaigners, by beating the enemy wherever they
met him.

We find a striking evidence of the hatred of "doing well enough" in
one of Nelson's letters to his wife, on Hotham's battle with the
French, under Martin, off Genoa, in 1795. Hotham was one of the old
school, and though, in two awkward engagements, he had taken two of
the French line, while a third had been burned, Nelson was indignant
that the whole French fleet had not been captured. He had urged the
admiral to leave the disabled ships in charge of the frigates, and
chase the French.

"But," says the letter, "he, much cooler than myself, said, 'we must
be contented--_we had done very well_.'" Nelson's evidently disgusted
remark on this species of contentment is--"Had we taken ten sail, and
suffered the eleventh to escape, when we could have got at her, I
could _never_ have called it _well done_." In another part he says,
"I wish to be an admiral, and in command of the British fleet. I
should very soon do much, or be ruined. My disposition cannot bear
tame and slow measures. _Sure I am_, that, had I commanded our fleet
on the 14th, the whole French fleet would have graced our triumph,
or I should have been in a confounded scrape." This was the language
which, like the impulse of a powerful instinct, predicted the days of
Aboukir, Copenhagen, and Trafalgar.

But the drag-chain on the progress of British intrepidity was at
length to be taken of. Hotham was succeeded by Jervis. This eminent
officer instantly reformed the whole condition of the Mediterranean
fleet. He had evidently adopted the same conception of naval merit,
which Nelson had so long kept before his eye. In selecting him for
the command of the squadron sent to the Nile, Jervis wrote to the
admiralty: "Nelson is an officer, who, whatever you bid him do, is
sure _to do more_." And, in this spirit, Nelson was not content with
running to Alexandria, and returning to say, that he found no one
there; his resolve was, to find the French wherever they were, and
fight them wherever they were found.

One word still for gallant old Jervis, the man who first confirmed
the discipline of the navy. His firmness was the secret. When the
Irish conspirators on board the Channel fleet had spread the spirit
of mutiny in 1797, Jervis was warned from the admiralty that his
fleet was in danger. It was suggested to him by some of his officers,
to stop the letters from home: "No," said he, "the precaution is
useless: I will answer for it that the commander-in-chief of _this_
fleet will know how to maintain his authority, if it is threatened."

But he left nothing to chance: he prohibited communication between
the ships--he sent for the captains of marines, and ordered that
their men should mess and sleep separately from the sailors; that
the sailors should not be suffered to converse in Irish, and that the
officers should be on the alert. He hanged the detected mutineers
without delay. Forgiveness was out of the question. To Captain
Pellew, who had interceded in favour of a mutineer, whose conduct
had previously been irreproachable, he replied, "We have, we think,
punished only the worthless. It is time, that our men should learn,
that no past conduct can redeem an act of treason."

Nothing could be more rational, or even more necessary, than this
determination; for treason is the most comprehensive of all crimes.
The mere robber, or murderer, commits his single act of guilt--but
the guilt of the traitor may cost the lives of thousands. The traitor
is never to be regarded as a solitary criminal, and this maxim was
never more necessary than at this moment. If laws are to be turned
into sentimentality, and conspiracy is to be dealt with like the
tricks of children, there must be an end of all security to _honest
men_. If the villains who have been lately inflaming the Irish mind
into madness, had been hanged by the sentence of the drum-head,
within half an hour after their seizure, there would have been no
necessity, at this moment, for keeping up a garrison of 45,000 men
in Ireland. Martial law is the _only_ law fit for the ruffians of
the torch and pike, and the gibbet is the only moral which they will
ever comprehend. To suppose that the Irish conspirators had even
entertained the expectation of forming an established government, or
of being suffered by England to raise a republic--or that any man out
of Bedlam could have dreamt of the possibility of waging a successful
war against England, while her fleets might starve Ireland in a week,
and nothing but English alms even now enables her to live--would be
absolute folly. The true object of Irish conspiracy was, and is,
and will always be, robbery and revenge; a short burst of rapine
and blood, followed by again running away, again begging pardon,
again living on alms, and again laughing at the weak indulgence and
insulted clemency of England.

Jervis, instead of listening to the cant of men of blood whining
about their wives and children, hanged them; and, by thus ridding his
fleet of a nest of villains, saved it from destruction, and perhaps,
with it, saved not merely the lives of thousands of brave men, whom
their impunity might have debauched into conspiracy, but saved the
honour of our naval name, and restored the enfeebled hopes of his
country.

We here quote with pleasure from the Frenchman:--"Jervis, in the
face of those symptoms, which threatened the British navy with
disaffection, sternly devoted himself to the establishment of
_implicit obedience_. The efficient organisation of the fleet was
the labour of his life, and occupied his latest thoughts. Never rash
himself, he nevertheless opened the way for the most daring deeds.
Nelson rushed into the arena, and, with the rapidity of lightning,
showed the latent results of the change. The governing principle
witnessed, rather than decreed the change. Its source, in fact,
was _not_ in the Admiralty, but in those floating camps, wherein
the triumphs which astonish us are gradually elaborated. Official
power is but the inert _crucible_ which transmutes the subsidies
of Parliament into ships. But a quickening principle is wanting to
those immense fleets, and the admirals supply it. Jervis and Nelson
rapidly transmitted the creative spark, and bequeathed a certain sort
of sovereignty under the distrustful eye of the English Admiralty--a
kind of dynasty arose--'the mayors of the palace took the sceptre
from the do-nothing kings.'"

All this is comparatively just. But the Frenchman peeps out under
the panegyrist, after all. Can it be conceived that any other
human being, at the end of nearly half a century, would quote,
with the slightest degree of approval, the report of Decrès, the
French minister of the marine to Napoleon, in 1805, after all
Nelson's victories, and just preceding the most illustrious of them
all--Trafalgar?

"The boasting of Nelson," writes Decrès, "equals his silliness,
(_ineptie_)--I use the proper word. But he has one eminent
quality--namely, that of aiming among his captains _only_ at a
character for bravery and good fortune. This makes him _accessible
to counsel_, and consequently, in difficult circumstances, if he
commands nominally, _others direct really_."

We have no doubt that, after scribbling this supreme _ineptie_,
Decrès considered himself to have settled the whole question, and
to have convicted Nelson of being simply a bold blockhead--Nelson,
the man of the hundred fights--the prince of tacticians--the admiral
who had never been beaten, and from whom, at the battle of Aboukir,
Decrès himself was rejoiced to make his escape, after having seen the
ruin of the French fleet.

We find a good deal of the same sort of petulant perversion, in the
narrative of Nelson's conduct at Naples. M. Gravière suddenly becomes
moral, and tells us the ten-times-told story of Lady Hamilton. But
what is all this to the naval war? Englishmen are not bound to defend
the character of Lady Hamilton; and if Nelson was actually culpable
in their intercourse, (a matter which actually has never yet been
_proved_,) Englishmen, who have some morality,--not Frenchmen, who
make a point of laughing at all morality--may upbraid his conduct.
But a French stoic is simply ridiculous. There are perhaps not fifty
men in all France, who would not have done, and are not doing every
day, where they have the opportunity, all that this moralist charges
Nelson with having done. Even if he were criminal in his private
life, so much the worse for himself in that solemn account which all
must render; but he was not the less the conqueror of Copenhagen,
Aboukir, and Trafalgar.

The hanging of Caraccioli also figures among the charges. We regret
that this traitor was not left to die of remorse, or by the course of
nature, at the age of eighty. We regret, too, that he could allege
even the shadow of a capitulation for his security. We equally regret
the execution of Ney under a similar shadow. But Caraccioli had been
an _admiral_ in the Neapolitan service, had joined the rebellion by
which rapine and slaughter overspread the country, and had driven the
King into exile. No man more deserved to be hanged, by the order of
his insulted, and apparently ruined King;--he _was_ hanged, and _all_
rebels ought thus to suffer. They are made for the scaffold.

The men who plunge a kingdom in blood, whose success must be
purchased by havoc, and whose triumph makes the misery of thousands
or millions, ought to make the small expiation which can be made by
their public punishment; and no country _can_ be safe in which it
is not the custom to hang traitors. Still, those acts, even if they
were of an order which might shock the sensibility of a Frenchman to
breach of treaty, or the sight of blood, have no reference to the
talents and the triumphs of Nelson.

But these volumes suddenly deviate from the history of the great
admiral, into remarks on the great living soldier of England. There,
too, we must follow them; and our task is no reluctant one; for it
enables us at once to enlighten intelligent inquiry, and to offer our
tribute to pre-eminent fame. But, in this instance, we argue with our
accomplished neighbours on different principles. The Frenchman loves
glory--the Englishman its fruits. The Frenchman loves the excitement
of war; the Englishman hates it, as mischievous and miserable, and to
be palliated only by the stern necessity of self-defence. He honours
intrepidity, but it only when displayed in a cause worthy of human
feeling. No man more exults in the talent of the field; but it is
only when it brings back security to the fireside. The noblest trophy
of Wellington, in the eyes of his country, is the thirty years of
peace won by his sword!

It has become the fashion of the French to speak of this illustrious
personage with something of a sneer at what they pronounce his "want
of enterprise." Every thing that he has done is by "_phlegm_!" Phlegm
must be a most valuable quality, in that case, for it enabled him
to defeat every officer to whom he had been opposed; and there was
scarcely any man of repute in the French army to whom he had not been
opposed. It is in no spirit of rational taunt, or of that hostility
which, we will hope, has died away between England and France, that
we give the list of the French marshals whom Wellington has fought,
and _always_ beaten, and several of them _several times_:--Junot at
Vimeira, Soult at Oporto and the Pyrenees, Victor and Sebastiani
at Talavera, Massena at Busaco, Marmont at Salamanca, Jourdan at
Vitoria, and a whole group of the chief generals of France, with Ney,
Soult, and Napoleon himself, at their head, at Waterloo.

But have the British military authors ever doubted the talent, or
disparaged the gallantry, of those distinguished soldiers? Certainly
not; they have given them every acknowledgment which ability and
bravery could demand. Let the French nation read the eloquent pages
of Alison, and see the character given by the historian to the
leaders in the Italian, German, and Spanish campaigns. Let them read
the spirited pages of Napier, and see them decorated almost with the
colours of romance. Does either of these popular and powerful authors
stigmatise the French generals with "_ineptie_," or characterise
their victories, as the mere results of inability either to attack or
to run away? Let them be the example of the future French military
writers, and let those writers learn that there is a European
tribunal, as well as a Parisian one.

But the French altogether mistake the question. Men like Wellington
are not the growth of any military school, of any especial army,
or of any peculiar nation. Without offering this great soldier any
personal panegyric, he was a military _genius_. Since Marlborough,
England had produced no such commander of an army, and may not
produce another such for a century to come. Nelson was similarly a
_genius_: he sprang at once to the first rank of sea-officers; and
England, fertile as she is in first-rate sailors and brave men, may
never produce another Nelson. Napoleon was a _genius_, and almost
as palpably superior to the crowd of brave and intelligent generals
round him, as if he had been of another species. The conduct of men
of this exclusive capacity is no more a rule for other men, than
their successes are to be depreciated to the common scale of military
good fortune. The campaigns of Napoleon in Italy; the sea campaign
in which Nelson pursued the French fleet half-round the globe, to
extinguish it at Trafalgar; the seven years' continued campaign of
Wellington in the Peninsula, finished by the most splendid march in
European history, from the frontier of Portugal into the heart of
France, have had no example in the past, and can be no example to
the future. The principle, the power, and the success, lie equally
beyond the limits of ordinary calculation. The evident fact is, that
there is an occasional rank of faculty, which puts all calculation
out of sight, which is found to produce effects of a new magnitude,
and which overpasses all difficulties, by the use of an intellectual
element, but occasionally, and but for especial purpose, communicated
to man.

We have no doubt whatever of the truth of this solution, and are
consequently convinced, that it would have been much wiser in M.
Gravière to have attempted to describe the career of Wellington, than
to pronounce on the principles of his science; and, above all, than
to account for his victories by the very last means of victory--the
mere brutishness of standing still, the simple immobility of passive
force, the mere unintelligent and insensate working of a machine.

"What a contrast," exclaims the Frenchman, "between these passionate
traits (of Nelson) and the _impassive bearing_ of Wellington, that
_cool and methodical_ leader, who _maintained_ his ground in the
Peninsula by the _sheer force of order and prudence_! Do they belong
to the same nation? Did they command the same men? The admiral, full
of enthusiasm, and devoured by the love of distinction, and the
general, so _phlegmatic_ and _immovable_, who, intrenched behind
his lines at Torres Vedras, or re-forming, without _emotion_, his
_broken_ squares on the field of Waterloo--(where not a single
British square was broken)--seems rather to aim at _wearying out his
enemy_ than at _conquering him_, and triumphs _only_ by his patient
and unconquerable firmness."

Must it not be asked, Why did the French suffer him to exhibit this
_firmness_? why did they not beat him at once? Do generals win
battles merely by waiting, until their antagonists are tired of
crushing them?

But the Frenchman still has a resource--he accounts for it all by
the design of a higher power! "It was _thus_, nevertheless, that
the designs of Providence were to be accomplished. It gave to the
general, destined to meet _incontestably superior_ troops(!!),
whose _first_ efforts were _irresistible_, that _systematic_ and
_temporising_ character, which was to _wear out_ the ardour of
our soldiers." Having thus accounted for the French perpetuity of
defeat on land, by a man of stupidity and stone; he accounts, with
equal satisfaction, for the perpetuity of defeat at sea by a man of
activity and animation. "To the admiral who was to meet squadrons
fresh out of harbour, and easily disconcerted by a sudden attack,
Providence gave that fiery courage and audacity which alone could
bring about those great disasters, that would _not_ have been
inflicted under the rules of the old school of tactics."

The Frenchman, in his eagerness to disparage Wellington as dull, and
Nelson as rash, forgets that he forces his reader to the conclusion,
that tardiness and precipitancy are equally fit to beat the French.
Or if they are _incontestably_ superior troops, and their first onset
is _irresistible_, how is it that they are beaten at the last, or are
ever beaten at all? We also find the curious and rather unexpected
acknowledgment, that Providence was always against them, and that it
had determined on their _defeat_, whether their enemy were swift or
slow.

We are afraid that we have been premature in giving M. de la
Gravière credit for getting rid of his prejudices. But we shall
set him a better example. We shall not deny that the French make
excellent soldiers; that they have even a sort of national fitness
for soldiership; that they form active, bold, and highly effective
troops: though, for them, as sailors, we certainly cannot say as
much. Henry IV. remarked "that he never knew a French king lucky
at sea;" and Henry spoke the truth. And the wisest thing which
France could do, would be to give up all attempts to be a "naval
power,"--which she never has been, and never can be--and expend her
money and her time on the comforts, the condition, and the spirit of
her people, both citizens and soldiery.

But, we must assist the French judgment on the character of
Wellington: and a slight detail will prove him to be the most
_enterprising_ leader of troops in the history of modern Europe.
Let us first settle the meaning of the word enterprise. It is not a
foolish restlessness, a giddy fondness for the flourish of Bulletins,
or a precipitate habit of rushing into projects unconsidered and
ineffective. It is activity, guided by intelligence; a daring
effort to attain a probable success. The French generals, in the
commencement of the revolutionary war, dashed at every thing, and yet
were not entitled to the praise of enterprise. They fought under the
consciousness that, unless they attracted Parisian notice by their
battles, they must pay the penalty with their heads. Thus nearly all
the principal generals of the early Republic were guillotined. The
_levée-en-masse_ gave them immense multitudes, who _must_ fight, or
starve. The Republic had _fourteen_ armies at once in the field, who
_must_ be fed; commissioners from Paris were in the camps; and the
general who declined to fight on all occasions, was stripped of his
epaulets, and sent to the "Place de Grève."

But enterprise, in the style which distinguishes a master of
strategy, is among the rarest military qualities. Marlborough
was almost the only officer, in the last century, remarkable for
enterprise, and its chief example was his march from Flanders
to attack the French and Bavarian army, which he routed in the
magnificent triumph of Blenheim. Wolfe's attack on the heights of
Abraham was a capital instance of enterprise, for it showed at once
sagacity and daring, and both in pursuit of a probable object,--the
surprise of the enemy, and the power of bringing him to an engagement
on fair ground.

But enterprise has been the _chief_ characteristic of the whole
military career of Wellington.

His first great Indian victory, Assaye, (23d September 1802,) was an
"enterprise," by which, in defiance of all difficulties, and with
but 5000 men, he beat the army of Scindiah and the rajah of Berar,
consisting of 50,000, of which 30,000 were cavalry. There, instead
of _phlegm_, he was accused of rashness; but his answer was, the
_necessity_ of stopping the enemy's march; and, more emphatic still,
a most consummate victory.

On his landing in Portugal, at the head of only 10,000 men, (August
5, 1808,) this man of phlegm instantly broke up the whole plan of
Junot. He first dashed at Laborde, commanding a division of 6000 men,
as the advanced guard of the main army; drove him from the mountain
position of Roliça; marched instantly to meet Junot, whom he defeated
at Vimeira; and, on the 15th of September, the British troops were in
possession of Lisbon. The French soon embarked by a convention, and
Portugal was free! This was the work of a _six-weeks'_ campaign by
this passive soldier.

The convention of Cintra excited displeasure in England, as the
capture of the whole army had been expected, from the high public
opinion of the British commander; and the opinion would not have been
disappointed, if he had continued in the command. The testimony of
Colonel Torrens, (afterwards military secretary to the Duke of York,)
on the court of inquiry, was, "That, on the defeat of the French at
Vimeira, Sir Arthur rode up to Sir Harry Burrard and said--'Now, Sir
Harry, is your time to advance upon the enemy; they are completely
broken, and we may be in Lisbon in _three days_.' Sir Harry's answer
was, 'that he thought a great deal had been done.'" The army was
halted, and the French, who felt that their cause was hopeless, sent
to propose the convention.

On the 22d of April 1809, Sir Arthur again landed in Portugal, to
take the command of the army, consisting of but 16,000 men, with 24
guns. His plan was to drive Soult out of Oporto, fight the French,
wherever he found them; and then return and attack Victor on the
Tagus. Such was the project of the man of phlegm! He made a forced
march of 80 miles, in three days and a-half, from Coimbra, crossed
the Douro, drove Soult out of Oporto, ate the dinner which had been
prepared for the Frenchman, and hunted him into the mountains, with
the loss of all his guns and baggage. The French army was ruined for
the campaign. This was the work of _three weeks_ from his landing at
Lisbon!

Sir Arthur's next enterprise was an advance into Spain. The kingdom
was held by a French force of upwards of 200,000 men, with all the
principal fortresses in their possession, the Pyrenees open, and
the whole force of France ready to repair their losses. The Spanish
armies were ill commanded, ill provided, and in all pitched battles
regularly beaten. The French force sent to stop him at Talavera, on
his road to Madrid, amounted to 60,000 men, under Jourdan, Victor,
and Sebastiani, with King Joseph at the head of the whole. The battle
began on the 27th of July, and, after a desperate struggle of two
days, with a force of nearly three times the number of the British,
ended by the rapid retreat of the French in the night, with the loss
of 20 pieces of cannon and four standards. The Spanish army under
Cuesta did good service on this occasion, but it was chiefly by
guarding a flank. Their position was strong, and they were but little
assailed. The British lost a fourth of their number in killed and
wounded; the French, 10,000 men.

The purpose of these pages is, not to give a history of the
illustrious Duke's exploits, but to show the utter absurdity of the
French notion, that he gained all his battles by standing still,
until the enemy grew tired of beating him. There is scarcely an
instance in all his battles, in which he did not _seek_ the enemy,
and there is _no instance_ in which he did not beat them! This is a
sufficient answer to the French theory.

The ruin of the Spanish armies, and the immense numerical superiority
of the French, commanded by Massena, compelled the British general,
in 1810, to limit himself to the defence of Portugal. Massena
followed him at the head of nearly 90,000 men. The British general
might have marched, without a contest, to the lines of Torres Vedras;
but the man of _phlegm_ resolved to fight by the way. He fought at
Busaco, (September 27.)

Massena, proverbially the most dashing of the French generals--the
"Enfant gâté de la Victoire," as Napoleon styled him--could not
believe that any officer would be so daring as to stop him on
his road. On being told that the English would fight, and on
reconnoitring their position, he said, "I cannot persuade myself that
Lord Wellington will risk the loss of his reputation; but, if he
does, _I shall have him_."

Napoleon, at Waterloo, was yet to utter the same words, and make
the same mistake. "Ah! je les tiens, ces Anglais."--"To-morrow,"
said Massena, "we shall reconquer Portugal, and in a few days I
shall drive the leopards into the sea." The day of Busaco finished
this boast, with a loss to the French of 2000 killed, 6000 wounded,
and with the loss, which Massena, perhaps, felt still more, of his
military reputation for life.

But the lines of Torres Vedras must not be forgotten in any memorial,
however brief, to the genius of Wellington. The great problem of
all strategists, at that period, was "the defence of Portugal
against an overwhelming force." Dumouriez and Moore had looked only
to the frontier, and justly declared that, from its extent and
broken nature, it was indefensible. Wellington, with a finer _coup
d'oeil_, looked to the half-circle of rising grounds stretching
from the Tagus to the sea, and enclosing the capital. He fortified
them with such admirable secrecy, that the French had scarcely heard
of their existence; and with such incomparable skill, that, when they
saw them at last, they utterly despaired of an attack. They were on
the largest scale of fortified lines ever constructed, their external
circle occupying forty miles. The defences consisted of 10 separate
fortifications, mounting 444 guns, and manned by 28,000 men. They
formed two lines, the exterior mounting 100 guns, the interior (about
eight miles within) mounting 200; the remaining guns being mounted
on redoubts along the shore and the river. The whole force, British
and Portuguese, within the lines, and keeping up the communication to
Lisbon, was nearly 80,000 men.

The contrast without and within the lines was of the most striking
kind, and formed a new triumph for the feelings of the British
general. Without, all was famine, ferocity, and despair; within,
all was plenty, animation, and certainty of triumph. Massena, after
gazing on those noble works for a mouth, broke up his hopeless
bivouac; retired to Santarem; saved the remnant of his unfortunate
army only by a retreat in the night; was hunted to the frontier;
fought a useless and despairing battle at Fuentes d'Onore; was
beaten, returned into France, and resigned his command. He was
thenceforth forgotten, probably died of the loss of his laurels, and
is now known only by his tomb in the Cemetery of Paris.

In October of the year 1811, though the British army had gone into
winter quarters, the man of "_passive_ courage" gave the enemy
another example of "enterprise." The fifth French corps, under
Gerard, had begun to ravage Estremadura. General Hill, by the order
of Lord Wellington, moved against the Frenchman; took him by surprise
at Aroyo de Molinos; fought him through the town, and out of the
town; captured his staff, his whole baggage, commissariat, guns, 30
captains, and 1000 men. He drove the rest up the mountains, and, in
short, destroyed the whole division--Gerard escaping with but 300 men.

The French field-marshal here amply acknowledged the effect of
enterprise. In his despatch to Berthier from Seville, Soult
says,--"This event is so disgraceful, that I know not how to qualify
it. General Gerard had choice troops with him, yet shamefully
suffered himself to be _surprised_, from excessive presumption and
confidence. The officers and soldiers were in the houses, as in the
midst of peace. I shall order an inquiry, and a severe example."

The next year began with the two most splendid sieges of the war. A
siege is proverbially the most difficult of all military operations,
requiring the most costly preparations, and taking up the longest
time. Its difficulty is obviously enhanced by the nearness of a
hostile force. Wellington was watched by two French armies, commanded
by Soult and Marmont, either of them of nearly equal force with his
own, and, combined, numbering 80,000 men. Ciudad Rodrigo was one of
the strongest fortresses of the Peninsula; Marmont was on his march
to succour it. Wellington rushed on it, and captured it by storm,
(January 19.) Marmont, finding that he was too late, retired. Badajoz
was the next prize, a still larger and more important fortress. Soult
was moving from the south to its succour. He had left Seville on
the 1st of April; Wellington rushed on it, as he had done on Ciudad
Rodrigo, and took it by one of the most daring assaults on record,
(April 7.)

This was again the man who conquered "by standing still." The letter
of General Lery, chief engineer of the army of the south, gives the
most unequivocal character of this latter enterprise. "The conquest
of Badajoz cost me eight engineers. Never was there a place in
a better state, or better provided with the requisite number of
troops. I see in that event a marked _fatality_. Wellington, with
his Anglo-Portuguese army, has taken the place, as it were, in the
presence of two armies. In short, I think the capture of Badajoz a
_very extraordinary_ event. I should be much at a loss to account for
it in any manner consistent with probability." The language of this
chief engineer seems, as if he would have brought all concerned to a
court-martial.

The conqueror, after those magnificent exploits, which realised to M.
Lery's eye something supernatural--the work of a destiny determined
on smiting France--might have indulged his _passiveness_, without
much fear even of French blame. He had baffled the two favourite
marshals of France--he had torn the two chief fortresses of Spain
out of French hands. There was now no enemy in the field. Soult had
halted, chagrined at the fall of Badajoz. Marmont had retired to the
Tormes. Wellington determined to continue their sense of defeat, by
cutting off the possibility of their future communication. The bridge
of Almarez was the only passage over the Tagus in that quarter.
It was strongly fortified and garrisoned. On this expedition he
despatched his second in command, General Hill, an officer who never
failed, and whose name is still held in merited honour by the British
army. The _tête-du-pont_, a strong fortification, was taken by
escalade. The garrison were made prisoners; the forts were destroyed,
(May 19.) The action was sharp, and cost, in killed and wounded,
nearly 200 officers and men.

Wellington now advanced to Salamanca, the headquarters of Marmont
during the winter; and pursued him out of it, to the Arapeiles, on
the 22d of July. In this battle Marmont was outmanoeuvred and
totally defeated, with the loss of 6000 killed and wounded, 7000
prisoners, 20 guns, and several eagles and ammunition waggons.
The British army now moved on Madrid. King Joseph fled; Madrid
surrendered, with 181 guns; and the government of Ferdinand and the
Cortes was restored.

But a still more striking enterprise was to come, the march to
Vitoria,--the brilliant commencement of the campaign of 1813.
Wellington had now determined to drive the French out of Spain. They
still had a force of 160,000 men, including the army of Suchet,
35,000. Joseph, with Jourdan, fearing to be outflanked, moved with
70,000 men towards the Pyrenees. On the 16th of May, Wellington
crossed the Douro. On the 21st of June he fought the battle of
Vittoria, with the loss of 6000 to the enemy, 150 guns, all their
baggage, and the plunder of Madrid. For this great victory Wellington
was appointed field-marshal.

The march itself was a memorable instance of "enterprise." It was a
movement of four hundred miles, through one of the most difficult
portions of the Peninsula, by a route never before attempted by
an army, and which, probably, no other general in Europe would
have attempted. Its conduct was so admirable, that it was scarcely
suspected by the French; its movement was so rapid, that it
outstripped them; and its direction was so skilful, that King Joseph
and his marshal had scarcely encamped, and thought themselves out of
the reach of attack, when they saw the English columns overtopping
the heights surrounding the valley of the Zadora.

In his last Spanish battle, the victory of the Pyrenees, where
he had to defend a frontier of sixty miles, he drove Soult over
the mountains, and was the first of all the generals engaged in
Continental hostilities, to plant his columns on French ground!

Those are the facts of _seven years_ of the most perilous war,
against the most powerful monarch whom Europe had seen for a thousand
years. The French army in the Peninsula had varied from 150,000 to
300,000 men. It was constantly recruited from a national force of
600,000. It was under the authority of a great military sovereign,
wholly irresponsible, and commanding the entire resources of the most
populous, warlike, and powerful of Continental states. The British
general, on the other hand, was exposed to every difficulty which
could embarrass the highest military skill. He had to guide the
councils of the two most self-willed nations in existence. He had
to train native armies, which scoffed at English discipline; he had
the scarcely less difficult task of contending with the fluctuating
opinions of public men in England: yet he never shrank; he never was
shaken in council, and he never was defeated in the field.

But by what means were all this succession of unbroken victories
achieved? Who can listen to the French babbling, which tells us that
it was done, simply by _standing still to be beaten_? The very nature
of the war, with an army composed of the raw battalions of England,
which had not seen a shot fired since the invasion of Holland in
1794, a period of fourteen years; his political anxieties from his
position with the suspicious governments of Spain and Portugal,
and not less with his own fluctuating Legislature; his encounters
with a force quadruple his own, commanded by the most practised
generals in Europe, and under the supreme direction of the conqueror
of the Continent--A condition of things so new, perplexing, and
exposed to perpetual hazard, in itself implies _enterprise_, a
character of sleepless activity, unwearied resource, and unhesitating
intrepidity--all the very reverse of passiveness.

That this illustrious warrior did not plunge into conflict on
every fruitless caprice; that he was not for ever fighting for the
Gazette; that he valued the lives of his brave men; that he never
made a march without a rational object, nor ever fought a battle
without a rational calculation of victory--all this is only to say,
that he fulfilled the duties of a great officer, and deserved the
character of a great man. But, that he made more difficult campaigns,
fought against a greater inequality of force, held out against more
defective means, and accomplished more decisive successes, than any
general on record, is mere matter of history.

His last and greatest triumph was Waterloo,--a victory less over an
army than an empire,--a triumph gained less for England than for
Europe,--the glorious termination of a contest for the welfare of
mankind. Waterloo was a defensive battle. But it was not the rule,
but the exception. The object of the enemy was Brussels: "To-night
you shall sleep in Brussels," was the address of the French Emperor
to his troops. Wellington's was but the wing of a great army spread
over leagues to meet the march of the French to Brussels. His force
consisted of scarcely more than 40,000 British and Hanoverians,
chiefly new troops; the rest were foreigners, who could scarcely be
relied on. The enemy in front of him were 80,000 veterans, commanded
by Napoleon in person. The left wing of the Allied force--the
Prussians--could not arrive till seven in the evening; after the
battle had continued eight hours. The British general, under those
circumstances, could not move; but he was not to be beaten. If he had
80,000 British troops, he would have finished the battle in an hour.
On seeing the Prussian troops in a position to follow up success, he
gave the order to advance; and in a single charge swept the French
army, the Emperor, and his fortunes, from the field! Thus closed the
18th of June 1815.

Within _three days_, this "man of passiveness" crossed the French
frontier, (June 21,) took every town in his way, (and all the French
towns on that route are fortified,) and, on the 30th, the English
and Prussians invested Paris. On the 3d of July, the capitulation of
Paris, garrisoned by 50,000 regular troops and the national guard,
was signed at St Cloud, and the French army was marched to the Loire,
where it was disbanded.

We have now given the answer which common sense gives, and which
history will always give, to the childishness of accounting for
Wellington's unrivalled successes by his "doing nothing" until the
"invincible" French chose to grow weary of being invincible. The
historic fact is, that their generals met a superior general; that
their troops met Englishmen, commanded by an officer worthy of such
a command; and that "enterprise" of the most daring, sagacious, and
brilliant order, was the especial, peculiar, and unequalled character
of Wellington.

The volumes of M. Gravière are interesting; but he must unlearn his
prejudices; or, if that be nationally impossible, he must palliate
them into something like probability. He must do this even in
consideration of the national passion for "glory." To be beaten
by eminent military qualities softens the shame of defeat; but to
be beaten by mere _passiveness_,--to be driven from a scene of
possession by _phlegm_, and to be stript of laurels by the hand of
indolence and inaptitude,--must be the last aggravation of military
misfortune.

Yet, this stain they must owe to the pen of men who subscribe to the
doctrine, that the great soldier of England conquered simply by his
_incapacity for action_!

We think differently of the French people and of the French soldiery.
The people are intelligent and ingenious; the soldiery are faithful
and brave. England has _no_ prejudices against either. Willing to
do justice to the merits of all, she rejoices in making allies
of nations, whom she has never feared as _enemies_. She wants no
conquest, she desires no victories. _Her_ glory is the peace of
mankind.

But, she will not suffer the tombs of her great men to be defaced,
nor their names to be taken down from the temple consecrated to the
renown of their country.

FOOTNOTE:

[8] _Sketches of the Last Naval War_; from the French of Captain
GRAVIÈRE. By the Hon. Captain PLUNKET. 2 vols. Longman.



DANUBE AND THE EUXINE.


    "Danube, Danube! wherefore comest thou
      Red and raging to my caves?
    Wherefore leap thy swollen waters
      Madly through the broken waves?
    Wherefore is thy tide so sullied
      With a hue unknown to me?
    Wherefore dost thou bring pollution
      To the old and sacred sea?"

    "Ha! rejoice, old Father Euxine!
      I am brimming full and red;
    Noble tidings do I carry
      From my distant channel bed.
    I have been a Christian river
      Dull and slow this many a year,
    Rolling down my torpid waters
      Through a silence morne and drear;
    Have not felt the tread of armies
      Trampling on my reedy shore;
    Have not heard the trumpet calling,
      Or the cannon's gladsome roar;
    Only listened to the laughter
      From the village and the town,
    And the church-bells, ever jangling,
      As the weary day went down.
    And I lay and sorely pondered
      On the days long since gone by,
    When my old primæval forests
      Echoed to the war-man's cry;
    When the race of Thor and Odin
      Held their battles by my side,
    And the blood of man was mingling
      Warmly with my chilly tide.
    Father Euxine! thou rememb'rest
      How I brought thee tribute then--
    Swollen corpses, gash'd and gory,
      Heads and limbs of slaughter'd men!
    Father Euxine! be thou joyful!
      I am running red once more--
    Not with heathen blood, as early,
      But with gallant Christian gore!
    For the old times are returning,
      And the Cross is broken down,
    And I hear the tocsin sounding
      In the village and the town;
    And the glare of burning cities
      Soon shall light me on my way--
    Ha! my heart is big and jocund
      With the draught I drank to-day.
    Ha! I feel my strength awaken'd,
      And my brethren shout to me;
    Each is leaping red and joyous
      To his own awaiting sea.
    Rhine and Elbe are plunging downward
      Through their wild anarchic land,
    Every where are Christians falling
      By their brother Christians' hand!
    Yea, the old times are returning,
      And the olden gods are here!
    Take my tribute, Father Euxine,
      To thy waters dark and drear.
    Therefore come I with my torrents,
      Shaking castle, crag, and town;
    Therefore, with the shout of thunder,
      Sweep I herd and herdsman down;
    Therefore leap I to thy bosom,
      With a loud, triumphal roar--
    Greet me, greet me, Father Euxine--
      I am Christian stream no more!"



THE MEMOIRS OF LORD CASTLEREAGH.[9]


In the absence of any real history of Ireland, the memoirs of its
distinguished persons are of the first importance. They are the
landmarks within which the broad and general track of historic
narrative must be led. They fix character--the most necessary aid to
the larger views of the historian. They disclose to us those secret
springs which regulate the great social machinery; and by an especial
faculty, more valuable than all, they bring us face to face with
minds of acknowledged eminence, teach us the course which the known
conquerors of difficulties have pursued, and exhibit the training
by which the championship of nations is to be sustained. As the old
lawgiver commanded that beautiful statues should be placed before the
Spartan wives, to impress their infants with beauty of countenance
and stateliness of form, the study of greatness has a tendency to
elevate our nature; and though camps and councils may be above our
course, yet the light shed from those higher spheres may guide our
steps through the tangled paths of our humbler world.

The present memoir gives evidence of an additional merit in
biography: it assists justice; it offers the power of clearing
character, which might have been refused to the living; it brings
forward means of justification, which the dignity of the injured, his
contempt of calumny, or the circumstances of his time, might have
locked up in his bosom. It is an appeal from the passion of the hour
to the soberness of years. It has the sincerity and the sanctity of a
voice from the world of the future.

The Stewarts, ancestors of the Marquis of Londonderry, came
originally from Scotland, and, settling in Ireland in the reign of
James I., obtained large possessions among the forfeited lands in
Ulster. The family were Protestants, and distinguished themselves
by Protestant loyalty in the troubled times of Ireland--a country
where trouble seems to be indigenous. One of those loyalists was
Colonel William Stewart, who, during the Irish war, under James II.,
raised a troop of horse at his own expense, and skirmished vigorously
against the Popish enemy at the siege of Londonderry. For this good
service he was attainted, with all the chief gentry of the kingdom,
in the confiscating parliament of James. But the confiscation was
not carried into effect, and the estate remained to a long line of
successors.

The father of the late Marquis of Londonderry was the first of
the family who was ennobled. He was an active, intelligent, and
successful man. Representing his county in two parliaments, and,
acting with the government, he partook of that golden shower which
naturally falls from the treasury. He became in succession the
possessor of office and the possessor of title--baron, viscount,
earl, and marquis--and wisely allied himself with English nobility,
marrying, first, a daughter of the Earl of Hertford, and, secondly,
a sister of Lord Camden. The subject of this memoir was a son of the
first marriage, and was born in Ireland on the 18th of June 1769.
From boyhood he was remarkable for coolness and intrepidity, and was
said to have exhibited both qualities in saving a young companion in
the lake of Strangford. At the age of seventeen he was entered of St
John's College, Cambridge, where he seems to have applied himself
actively to the general studies of the place--elementary mathematics,
classics, logic, and moral philosophy. This sufficiently answers the
subsequent taunts at the narrowness of his education.

As his father had been a politician, his son and heir was naturally
intended for political life. The first step of his ambition was a
costly one. County elections in those days were formidable affairs.
The Hillsborough family had formerly monopolised the county. Young
Stewart was put forward, according to custom, as "the champion of
independence." He gained but half the day, for the Hillsboroughs
still retained one nominee. The young candidate became a member of
parliament, but this step cost £60,000.

The sacrifice was enormous, and perhaps, in our day, might startle
the proudest rent-roll in England: but, seventy years ago, and in
Ireland, the real expenditure was probably equivalent to £100,000 in
our day. And it must have been still more distressing to the family,
from the circumstance, that the sum had been accumulated to build
a mansion; that the expense of the election also required the sale
of a fine old collection of family portraits; and that the old lord
was forced to spend the remainder of his life in what the biographer
states to be an old barn, with a few rooms added. But his son was
now launched on public life--that stream in which so many dashing
swimmers sink, but in which talent, guided by caution, seldom fails
to float along, until nature or weariness finishes the effort, and
the man disappears, like all who went before.

The young member, fresh from college, and flushed with triumph
over "parliamentary monopoly," was, of course, a Whig. _Plutarch's
Lives_, and the history of the classic commonwealths, make every
boy at school a Whig. It is only when they emerge from the cloudy
imaginations of republicanism, and the fabulous feats of Greek
championship, that they acquire common sense, and act according to
the realities of things. The future statesman commenced his career by
the ultra-patriotism of giving a "written pledge," on the hustings,
to the support of "parliamentary reform."

With this act of boyishness he was, of course, taunted in
after-life by the Whigs. But his answer was natural and just: it
was in substance, that he had been, in 1790, an advocate for Irish
reform; and if the Irish parliament had continued under the same
circumstances, he would be an advocate for its reform still. But in
1793 a measure had been carried, which made all change perilous: the
Popish peasantry had been suffered to obtain the right of voting; and
thenceforward he should not aid parliamentary reform.

It is to be observed, that this language was not used under
the temptation of office, for he did not possess any share in
administration until four years afterwards, in 1797.

The forty-shilling franchise was the monster evil of Ireland. Every
measure of corruption, of conspiracy, and of public convulsion,
originated in that most mischievous, factious, and false step. It
put the whole parliamentary power of the country into the hands of
faction; made public counsel the dictation of the populace; turned
every thing into a job; and finally, by the pampering of the rabble,
inflamed them into civil war, and, by swamping the constituency,
rendered the extinction of the parliament a matter of necessity to
the existence of the constitution.

To this measure--at once weak and ruinous, at once the triumph of
faction and the deathblow of Irish tranquillity; at once paralysing
all the powers of the legislature for good, and sinking the peasantry
into deeper degradation--we must give a few words.

The original condition of the peasantry in Ireland was serfdom. A
few hereditary chiefs, with the power of life and death, ruled the
whole lower population, as the master of the herd rules his cattle.
English law raised them from this condition, and gave them the
rights of Englishmen. But no law of earth could give the Celt the
industry, frugality, or perseverance of the Englishman. The result
was, that the English artificer, husbandman, and trader, became men
of property, while the Celt lingered out life in the idleness of his
forefathers. Robbery was easier than work, and he robbed; rebellion
was more tempting than loyalty, and he rebelled: the result was
the frequent forfeiture of the lands of chiefs, who, prompted by
their priests, excited by their passions, and urged by the hope of
plunder, were continually rebelling, and necessarily punished for
their rebellion. Portions of their lands were distributed as the pay
of the soldiery who conquered them; portions were given to English
colonists, transplanted for the express purpose of establishing
English allegiance, arts, and feelings in Ireland; and portions
devolved to the crown. But we are not to imagine that these were
transfers of smiling landscapes and propitious harvests--that this
was a renewal of the Goth and Vandal, invading flowery shores, and
sacking the dwellings of native luxury. Ireland, in the 16th and
17th centuries, was a wilderness; the fertility of the soil wasted
in swamps and thickets; no inns, no roads; the few towns, garrisons
in the midst of vast solitudes; the native baron, a human brute,
wallowing with his followers round a huge fire in the centre of a
huge wigwam, passing from intoxication to marauding, and from beaten
and broken marauding to intoxication again. A few of those barons had
been educated abroad, but even they, on their return, brought back
only the love of blood, the habit of political falsehood, and the
hatred to the English name, taught in France and Spain. The wars of
the League, the government of the Inquisition, the subtlety of the
Italian courts, thus added their share of civilised atrocity, to the
gross superstitions and rude revenge of Popish Ireland.

We must get rid of the tinsel which has been scattered by poetry over
the past ages of Ireland. History shows, under the embroidered cloak,
only squalidness. Common sense tells us what _must_ be the condition
of a people without arts, commerce, or agriculture; perpetually
nurturing a savage prejudice, and exhibiting it in the shape of
a savage revenge; ground to the dust by poverty, yet abhorring
exertion; suffering under hourly tyranny, yet incapable of enjoying
the freedom offered to them; and looking on the vigorous and growing
prosperity of the English colonist, with only the feeling of malice,
and the determination to ruin him. The insurrection of 1641, in which
probably 50,000 Protestant lives were sacrificed, was only one of
the broader scenes of a havoc which every age was exemplifying on
a more obscure, but not less ferocious scale. The evidence of this
indolent misery is given in the narrowness of the population, which,
at the beginning of the last century, scarcely reckoned a million
of souls: and this, too, in a country of remarkable fertility, free
from all habitual disease, with a temperate climate, and a breadth
of territory containing at this hour eight millions, and capable of
supporting eight millions more.

The existing condition of Ireland, even with all the difficulties of
its own creation, is opulence, peace, and security, compared with its
wretchedness at the period of the English revolution.

The measure of giving votes for members of parliament to the Popish
peasantry was the immediate offspring of faction, and, like all its
offspring, exhibited the fallacy of faction. It failed in every
form. It had been urged, as a means of raising the character of the
peasantry--it instantly made perfidy a _profession_. It had been
urged, as giving the landlord a stronger interest in the comforts and
conciliation of his tenantry--it instantly produced the splitting
of farms for the multiplication of votes, and, consequently, all
the hopeless poverty of struggling to live on patches of tillage
inadequate for the decent support of life. It had been urged, as a
natural means of attaching the peasantry to the constitution--it
instantly exhibited its effects in increased disorder, in nightly
drillings and daylight outbreaks; in the assassination of landlords
and clergy, and in those more daring designs which grow out of
pernicious ignorance, desperate poverty, and irreconcilable
superstition. The populace--beginning to believe that concession had
been the result of fear; that to receive they had only to terrify;
and that they had discovered the secret of power in the pusillanimity
of parliament--answered the gift of privilege by the pike; and
the "forty-shilling freeholder" exhibited his new sense of right
in the insurrection of 1798--an insurrection which the writer of
these volumes--from his intelligence and opportunities a competent
authority--calculates to have cost 30,000 lives, and not less than
three millions sterling!

The forty-shilling franchise has since been abolished. Its practical
abominations had become too glaring for the endurance of a rational
legislature, and it perished. Yet the "snake was scotched, not
killed." The spirit of the measure remained in full action: it was
felt in the force which it gave to Irish agitation, and in the
insidiousness which it administered to English party. In Ireland it
raised mobs; in England it divided cabinets. In Ireland it was felt
in the erection of a rabble parliament; in England it was felt in
the pernicious principle of "open questions;" until the leaders of
the legislature, like all men who suffer themselves to tamper with
temptation, gave way; and the second great stage of national hazard
was reached, in the shape of the bill of 1829.

If the projected measure of "endowing the popery of Ireland"--in
other words, of establishing the worship of images, and bowing down
to the spiritual empire of the papacy--shall ever, in the fatuity
of British rulers and the evil hour of England, become law; a third
great stage will be reached, which may leave the country no farther
room for either advance or retrogression.

       *       *       *       *       *

In the year 1796, the father of the young member had been raised to
the earldom of Londonderry, and his son became Viscount Castlereagh.
In the next year his career as a statesman began; he was appointed
by Lord Camden, (brother-in-law of the second Earl of Londonderry,)
Keeper of the Privy Seal of Ireland.

The conduct of the Irish administration had long wanted the first
quality for all governments, and the indispensable quality for the
government of Ireland,--firmness. It has been said that the temper of
the Irish is Oriental, and that they require an Oriental government.
Their wild courage, their furious passion, their hatred of toil, and
their love of luxury, certainly seem but little fitted to a country
of uncertain skies and incessant labour. The Saracen, transported to
the borders of the Atlantic, might have been the serf, and, instead
of waving the Crescent over the diadems of Asia, might have been
cowering over the turf-fire of the Celt, and been defrauded of the
pomps of Bagdad and the spoils of Jerusalem. The _decision_ of one
of the magnificent despotisms of the East in Ireland might have been
the true principle of individual progress and national renown. The
scimitar might have been the true talisman.

But the successive British administrations took the false and the
fatal step of meeting the wild hostility of Ireland by the peaceful
policy of England. Judging only from the habits of a country trained
to the obedience of law, they transferred its quiet formalities into
the midst of a population indignant at all law; and, above all, at
the law which they thought of only as associated with the swords
of the soldiers of William. The government, continually changing
in the person of the Viceroy, fluctuated in its measures with the
fluctuation of its instruments; conceded where it ought to have
commanded; bartered power, where it ought to have enforced authority;
attempted to conciliate, where its duty was to have crushed; and
took refuge behind partisanship, where it ought to have denounced
the disturbers of their country. The result was public irritation
and cabinet incapacity--a continual rise in the terms of official
barter, pressing on a continual helplessness to refuse. This could
not last--the voice of the country was soon an uproar. The guilt, the
folly, and the ruin, had become visible to all. The money-changers
were masters of the temple, until judicial vengeance came, and swept
away the traffickers, and consigned the temple to ruin.

When we now hear the cry for the return of the Irish legislature, we
feel a just surprise that the memory of the old legislature should
have ever been forgotten, or that it should ever be recorded without
national shame. We should as soon expect to see the corpse of a
criminal exhumed, and placed on the judgment-seat of the court from
which he was sent to the scaffold.

The Marquis of Buckingham, once a popular idol, and received as
viceroy with acclamation, had no sooner dared to remonstrate with
this imperious parliament, than he was overwhelmed with national
rebuke. The idol was plucked from its pedestal; and the Viceroy,
pursued by a thousand libels, was glad to escape across the Channel.
He was succeeded by the Earl of Westmoreland, a man of some talent
for business, and of some determination, but by no means of the
order that "rides the whirlwind, and directs the storm." He, too,
was driven away. In this dilemma, the British cabinet adopted the
most unfortunate of all courses--concession; and for this purpose
selected the most unfitting of all conceders, the Earl Fitzwilliam--a
man of no public weight, though of much private amiability; sincere,
but simple; honest in his own intentions, but perfectly incapable
of detecting the intentions of others. His lordship advanced to the
Irish shore with conciliation embroidered on his flag. His first
step was to take the chief members of Opposition into his councils;
and the immediate consequence was an outrageousness of demand which
startled even his simple lordship. The British cabinet were suddenly
awakened to the hazard of giving away the constitution by wholesale,
and recalled the Viceroy. He returned forthwith, made a valedictory
complaint in parliament, to which no one responded; published an
explanatory pamphlet, which explained nothing; and then sat down
on the back benches of the peerage for life, and was heard of no
more. The Earl was succeeded by Lord Camden, son of the celebrated
chief-justice, but inheriting less of the law than the temperament
of his father. Graceful in manner, and even aristocratic in person,
his councils were as undecided as his mission was undefined. The
aspect of the times had grown darker hour by hour, yet his lordship
speculated upon perpetual serenity. Conspiracy was notorious
throughout the land, yet he moved as tranquilly as if there were not
a traitor in the earth; and on the very eve of a conflagration, of
which the materials were already laid in every county of Ireland, he
relied on the silent spell of the statute-book!

The secretary, Mr Pelham, afterwards Lord Chichester, wanted the
meekness, or disdained the short-sightedness of his principal;
and, on the first night of his official appearance in the House,
he gave at once the strongest evidence of his own opinion, and the
strongest condemnation of the past system; by boldly declaring that
"concessions to the Catholics seemed only to increase their demands;
that what they now sought was incompatible with the existence of a
British constitution; that concession must stop somewhere; and that
it had already reached its utmost limit, and could not be allowed to
proceed. Here he would plant his foot, and never consent to recede an
inch further."

The debate on this occasion continued during the night, and until
eight in the morning. All that fury and folly, the bitterness of
party and the keenness of personality, could combine with the
passionate eloquence of the Irish mind, was exhibited in this
memorable debate. The motion of the popish advocates was lost, but
the rebellion was carried. The echo of that debate was heard in the
clash of arms throughout Ireland; and Opposition, without actually
putting the trumpet to their lips, and marshalling conspiracy, had
the guilty honour of stimulating the people into frenzy, which the
Irishman calls an appeal to the god of battles, but which, in the
language of truth and feeling, is a summons to all the sanguinary
resolves and satanic passions of the human mind.

The secretary, perhaps foreseeing the results of this night, and
certainly indignant at the undisciplined state of the legislative
council, suddenly returned to England; and Lord Castlereagh was
appointed by his relative, the Viceroy, to fill the post of secretary
daring his absence. The rebellion broke out on the night of the 23d
of May 1798.

In the year 1757, a committee was first established for the relief
of Roman Catholics from their disabilities by law. From this
justifiable course more dangerous designs were suffered to follow.
The success of republicanism in America, and the menaces of war
with republican France, suggested the idea of overthrowing the
authority of government in Ireland. In 1792, his Majesty's message
directed the repeal of the _whole body_ of anti-Romanist statutes,
excepting those which prohibited admission into parliament, and
into thirty great offices of state, directly connected with the
confidential departments of administration. The Romish committee had
already extended their views still farther. The well-known Theobald
Wolfe Tone was their secretary, and he prepared an alliance with
the republicanised Presbyterians of the north, who, in 1791, had
organised in Belfast a club entitled "The United Irishmen."

The combination of the Romanist of the south and the dissenter of the
north was rapidly effected. Their mutual hatreds were compromised,
for the sake of their common hostility to Church and State. Upwards
of 100,000 men in arms were promised by the north; millions, to be
hereafter armed, were offered by the south; agents were despatched to
urge French expeditions; correspondences were held with America for
aid; the whole machinery of rebellion was in full employment, and a
civil war was already contemplated by a group of villains, incapable
of any one of the impulses of honourable men.

It is memorable that, in the subsequent convulsion, not one of those
men of blood displayed the solitary virtue of the ruffian--courage.
They lived in subterfuge, and they died in shame. Some of them
perished by the rope, not one of them fell by the sword. The leaders
begged their lives, betrayed their dupes, acknowledged their
delinquencies, and finished their days beyond the Atlantic, inflaming
the hostility of America, libelling the government by which their
lives were spared, and exemplifying the notorious impossibility of
reforming a rebel but by the scaffold.

Attempts have been made, of late years, to raise those men into the
reputation of heroism; they might as justly have been raised into
the reputation of loyalty. No sophistry can stand against the facts.
Not one of them took the common hazards of the field: they left the
wretched peasantry to fight, and satisfied themselves with harangues.
Even the poetic painting of Moore cannot throw a halo round the head
of Lord Edward Fitzgerald. This hero walked the country in woman's
clothes, to be arrested in his bed, and perish in a prison. Tone cut
his throat. Irishmen are naturally brave; but it is no dishonour to
the nation to know that treason degrades the qualities of nature, and
that conscience sinks the man of nerve into the poltroon.

It was among the singular instances of good fortune which saved
Ireland in her crisis, that Lord Castlereagh assumed the duties
of Irish Secretary. Uniting mildness of address with known
determination, he was a favourite in the House of Commons, which
in those days was proud of its character alike for manners and
intrepidity. His indefatigable vigilance, and even the natural vigour
of his time of life, rendered him adequate to services and labours
which might have broken down the powers of an older man, and which
must have been declined by the feeble health of his predecessor,
Pelham, who still actually retained the office. Even his family
connexion with the Viceroy may have given him a larger share than
usual of the immediate confidence of government.

Under all circumstances, he was the fittest man for the time. He
protected the country in the most difficult period of its existence.
There was but one more service to secure Ireland against ruinous
change--the rescue of her councils from the dominion of the mob; and
it was his eminent fortune to effect it, by the Union.

There is the most ample evidence, that neither parliamentary reform
nor Catholic emancipation were the true objects of the United
Irishmen. The one was a lure to the malcontents of the north, the
other to the malcontents of the south. But the secret council of the
conspiracy--determined to dupe the one, as it despised the other--had
resolved on a democracy, which, in its day of triumph, following the
steps of France, would, in all probability, have declared itself
infidel, and abolished all religion by acclamation. Party in the
north pronounced its alliance with France, by commemorating, with
French pageantry, the anniversary of the Revolution. The remnants of
the old volunteer corps were collected at this menacing festival,
which lasted for some days, and exhibited all the pomp and all the
insolence of Paris. Emblematic figures were borne on carriages
drawn by horses, with republican devices and inscriptions. On one
of those carriages was a figure of Hibernia, with one hand and
foot in shackles, and a volunteer presenting to her a figure of
Liberty, with the motto, "The releasement of the prisoners from the
Bastille." On another was the motto,--"Our Gallic brethren were born
July 14th, 1789. Alas! we are still in embryo." Another inscription
was--"Superstitious jealousy the cause of the Irish Bastille; let
us unite and destroy it." The portrait of Franklin was exhibited
among them, with this inscription,--"Where Liberty is, there is my
country." Gunpowder and arms were put in store, pikes were forged,
and treasonous addresses were privately distributed throughout the
country.

It is to be observed, that those acts occurred _before_ the accession
of Lord Castlereagh to office: their existence was the result of
that most miserable of all policies--the sufferance of treason, in
the hope that it may die of sufferance. If he had guided the Irish
councils in 1792 instead of in 1794, the growing treason would have
either shrunk from his energy, or been trampled out by his decision.

It has been the custom of party writers to charge the secretary with
rashness, and even with insolence. The answer is in the fact, that,
until the year in which the revolt became imminent, his conduct was
limited to vigilant precaution--to sustaining the public spirit--to
resisting the demands of faction in the House--and to giving the
loyal that first and best creator of national courage--the proof
that, if they did not betray themselves, they would not be betrayed
by their government.

In 1798, the rebellion was ripe. The conspirators had been fully
forewarned of their peril by the vigour of public measures. But,
disgusted by the delays of France,--conscious that every hour was
drawing detection closer round them; and still more, in that final
frenzy which Providence suffers to take possession of men abusing its
gifts of understanding,--they at last resolved on raising the flag
of rebellion. A return of the rebel force was made by Lord Edward
Fitzgerald, stating the number of _armed_ men in Ulster, Leinster,
and Munster, at 279,896! and the 23d of May was named as the day of
the general insurrection.

Government now began to act. On the 12th of March, it arrested the
whole body of the delegates of Leinster, assembled in committee in
the metropolis. The seizure of their papers gave the details of
the treason. Warrants were instantly issued for the arrest of the
remaining leaders, Emmett, M'Nevin, Lord Edward Fitzgerald, and
others. We hasten on. A second committee was formed; and again broken
up by the activity of the government. The French agency was next
extinguished, by the arrest of O'Connor, the priest Quigley, and
others, on the point of leaving England for France. Seizures of arms
were made, the yeomanry were put on duty, the loyalists were formed
into corps, armed, and disciplined.

Lord Edward Fitzgerald had escaped, and a reward of £1000 was
put upon his head. On the 19th of May, only four days before the
outbreak, he was arrested in an obscure lodging in Dublin, stabbed
one of his captors in the struggle, was himself wounded, and died in
prison of his wound.

During this most anxious period, the life of every leading member
of government was in imminent peril. Plots were notoriously formed
for the assassination of the commander-in-chief, and the chancellor;
but Lord Castlereagh was obviously the especial mark for the
conspirators. In scorn of this danger, he gallantly persevered; and,
on the 22d of May, the very night before the commencement of the
insurrection, he brought down to the House the following message from
the Lord-lieutenant:--

"That his excellency had received information, that the disaffected
had been daring enough to form a plan, for the purpose of possessing
themselves, in the course of the _present week_, of the metropolis;
of seizing the seat of government, and those in authority within
the city. That, in consequence of that information, he had directed
every military precaution to be taken which seemed expedient; that
he had made full communication to the magistrates, for the direction
of their efforts; and that he had not a doubt, by the measures
which would be pursued, that the designs of the rebellious would be
effectually and entirely crushed."

To this message the House of Commons voted an immediate
answer,--"That the intelligence thus communicated filled them
with horror and indignation, while it raised in them a spirit of
resolution and energy." And, for the purpose of publicly showing
their confidence and their determination, the whole of the Commons,
preceded by the speaker and the officers of the House, went on foot,
two by two, in procession through the streets, to the castle, to
carry up their address to the Viceroy.

Lord Castlereagh, during this most anxious period, was in constant
activity, keeping up the correspondence of his government with the
British Cabinet and the generals commanding in Ireland. But, the
correspondence preserved in the Memoirs is limited to directions to
the military officers--among whom were the brave and good Abercromby,
and Lake, Moore, and others who, like them, were yet to gain their
laurels in nobler fields.

The rebellion, after raging for six weeks in the south, and
exhibiting the rude daring of the peasantry, in several desperate
attacks on the principal towns garrisoned by the army, was at
length subdued by Lord Cornwallis; who, at once issuing an amnesty,
and acting at the head of a powerful force, restored the public
tranquillity. This promptitude was fortunate; for in August a
debarkation was made by General Humbert in the west, at the head of
eleven hundred French troops, as the advanced guard of an army. This
force, though absurdly inferior to its task, yet, by the rapidity
of its marches, and the daring of its commander, revived the spirit
of insurrection, and was joined by many of the peasantry. But the
whole were soon compelled to lay down their arms to the troops of the
Viceroy. Scarcely had they been sent to an English prison, when a
French squadron, consisting of a ship of the line and eight frigates,
with 5000 troops on board, appeared off the northern coast. They
were not left long to dream of invasion. On the _very next day_, the
squadron under Sir John Borlase Warren was seen entering the French
anchorage. The enemy were instantly attacked. The line-of-battle
ship, the Hoche, with six of the frigates, was captured after a sharp
cannonade; and among the prisoners was found the original incendiary
of the rebellion, Wolfe Tone, bearing the commission of a French
adjutant-general. On his trial and sentence by a court-martial in
Dublin, he solicited to be shot as a soldier, not hanged as a felon.
But there was too much blood on his head to alter the forms of law
for a villain who had returned for the express purpose of adding the
blood of thousands to the past. To escape being hanged, he died by
his own hand, deplorably, but suitably, closing a life which honesty
and industry might have made happy and honourable, by the last and
only crime which he could have added to the long list of his treasons.

The administration of Lord Castlereagh was now to be distinguished
by another national service of the highest order. The British
government had been awakened, by the rebellion, to the _necessity of
a union_. The object of the rebels was to separate the two islands
by violence: the danger pointed out the remedy, and the object of
government was to join them indissolubly by law. The measure had
been proposed nearly a century before, by the peerage of Ireland
themselves, then shrinking from a repetition of the war of James
II., and the sweeping confiscations of the popish parliament. The
measure was twice proposed to the British cabinet, in 1703 and 1707.
But the restless intrigues of party in the reign of Anne occupied
all the anxieties of a tottering government; and the men who found
it difficult to float upon the surge, thought themselves fortunate
to escape the additional gusts, which might come ruffling the waters
from Ireland. The Volunteer armament, with the example of America, if
not actually inflaming Ireland to revolution, yet kindling a beacon
to every eye which sought the way to republicanism, again awoke the
cabinet to the necessity of a union. The regency question, in which
the Irish parliament attempted to divide, not only the countries, but
the crown--placing one half on the head of the Prince of Wales, and
the other half on the head of the King--again startled the cabinet.
But, as the peril abated, the means of protection were thrown by. The
hurricane of France then came, and dashed against every throne of
Europe, sinking some, shattering others, and throwing clouds, still
pregnant with storm and flame, over the horizon of the civilised
world. But the vices of France suddenly extinguished the European
perils of Revolution. The democracy which, proclaiming universal
peace and freedom, had summoned all nations to be present at the
erection of a government of philosophy, was seen exulting in the
naked display of cruelty and crime. In place of a demigod, Europe
saw a fiend, and shrank from the altar on which nothing was to be
accepted but the spoil and agonies of man.

Those facts are alluded to, simply to extinguish the gross and common
charge, that the British cabinet fostered the rebellion, only to
compel the country to take refuge in the Union. It is unquestionable,
that the wisdom of its policy had been a maxim for a hundred years;
that the plan was to be found in the portfolio of every cabinet; that
all administrative foresight acknowledged that the time _must_ come
when it would be inevitable, yet put off the hour of action; that it
haunted successive cabinets like a ghost, in every hour of national
darkness, and that they all rejoiced at its disappearance at the
return of day. But when rebellion broke out in Ireland itself--when
it was no longer the reflection from the glare of American democracy,
nor the echo from the howl of France; when the demand of separation
was made by the subjects of the British crown, in the sight of
England--the necessity was irresistible. There was no longer any
alternative between binding in fetters, and binding in law. Then the
resolve of Pitt was made, and its performance was committed to the
hands of a fearless and faithful man. Ireland was relieved from the
burden of a riotous and impoverished independence, and England was
relieved from the contemptible policy of acting by party, which she
despised, and paying a parliament to protect a constitution.

But we must hasten to other things. There was, of course, an infinite
outcry among all the tribes who lived upon popular corruption. In
closing the gates of the Irish parliament, they had been shut out
from the mart where they had flocked night and day to sell their
influence, their artifices, and themselves. The voluntary slave-trade
was broken up; and the great dealers in political conscience regarded
themselves as robbed of a right of nature. The kings of Benin and
Congo could not be more indignant at the sight of a British cruiser
blockading one of their rivers. The calamity was universal; the whole
body of parliamentary pauperism was compelled to work or starve.
The barrister was forced to learn law; the merchant to turn to his
ledger; the country gentleman, who had so long consoled himself
for his weedy fallows, by the reflection that, if they _grew_
nothing else, they could at least grow forty-shilling voters, found
"Othello's occupation gone." The whole flight of carrion-crows, whom
the most distant scent of corruption brought upon the wing; all the
locust race, which never alighted, but to strip the soil; the whole
army of sinecurism, the countless generation of laziness and license,
who, as in the monkish days, looked to receiving their daily meal at
the doors of the treasury, felt the sudden sentence of starvation.

But this, too, passed away. Jobbery, a more than equivalent for the
exemption of the land from the viper, became no longer a trade;
faction itself, of all existing things the most tenacious of life,
gradually dropped off; the natural vitality of the land, no longer
drained away by its blood-suckers, began to show itself in the
vigour of the public mind; peace did its office in the renewal of
public wealth, and perhaps the happiest years of Ireland were those
which immediately followed the Union. If Ireland was afterwards
overshadowed, the cause was to be found in that sullen influence
which had thrown Europe into darkness for a thousand years.

Lord Castlereagh was now advanced an important step in public life.
Mr Pelham, who from ill health had long been an absentee, resigned
his office. The services of his manly and intelligent substitute
had been too prominent to be overlooked. A not less trying scene of
ministerial courage and ability was about to open, in the proposal of
the Union; and no man could compete with _him_ who had extinguished
the rebellion.

A letter from his friend Lord Camden (November 1798) thus announced
the appointment:--"Dear Castlereagh,--I am extremely happy to be
informed by Mr Pitt that the wish of the Lord-lieutenant that you
should succeed Mr Pelham (since he has relinquished the situation of
secretary) has been acceded to by the King and his ministers; and
that the consent of the English government has been communicated to
Lord Cornwallis."

On the 22d of January, a message to the English House of Commons
was brought down, recommending the Union, on the ground of "the
unremitting industry with which the enemies of the country persevered
in their avowed design of separating Ireland from England." On the
31st, Pitt moved eight resolutions as the basis of the measure.
Sheridan moved an amendment, which was negatived by one hundred
and forty to fifteen votes. In the Lords, the address in answer to
the message was carried without a division. It was clear that the
question in England was decided.

In Ireland the discussion was more vehement, and more protracted;
but the decision was ultimately the same. Parliament went the way of
all criminals. It must be allowed, that its scaffold was surrounded
with popular clamour, to an extraordinary extent. It faced its fate
with national haughtiness, and vigorously proclaimed its own virtues
to the last. But, when the confusion of the scene was over, and the
scaffold was moved away, none lingered near the spot to wring their
hands over the grave.

The unquestionable fact is, that there was a national sense of the
unfitness of separate legislatures for two countries, whose closeness
of connexion was essential to the existence of both. The Protestant
felt that, by the fatal folly of conceding votes to the popish
peasantry--votes amounting to universal suffrage--parliament must,
in a few years, become popish in all but the name. The landlords
felt that, the constant operation of party on the peasantry must
rapidly overthrow all property. The still more enlightened portion
of society felt that every hour exposed the country more perilously
to civil commotion. And even the narrowest capacity of judging must
have seen, in the smoking harvest, ruined mansions, and slaughtered
population of the revolted counties, the hazard of trusting to a
native parliament; which, though it might punish, could not protect;
and which, in the hour of danger, could not stir hand or foot but by
the help of their mighty neighbour and fast friend.

If, in the rebellion, a wall of iron had been drawn round Ireland,
and her constitution had been left to the defence furnished by her
parliament alone, that constitution would have been but a cobweb;
parliament would have been torn down like a condemned building; and
out of the ruins would have been instantly compiled some grim and yet
grotesque fabric of popular power--some fearful and uncouth mixture
of legislation and vengeance: a republic erected on the principles
of a despotism; a temple to anarchy, with the passions of the rabble
for its priesthood, and the fallen heads of all the noble, brave, and
intellectual in the land, for the decorations of the shrine.

The cry of Repeal has revived the recollection of the parliament; but
the country has refused to recognise that cry as national, and even
the echo has perished. It was notoriously adopted, not for its chance
of success, but for its _certainty_ of failure. It was meant to give
faction a _perpetual_ pretext for mendicancy. But the mendicant and
the pretext are now gone together. A few childish people, forgetting
its uselessness and its errors, alone continue to whine over it--as
a weak parent laments the loss of a son whose life was a burden to
him, and whose death was a relief. The Union was one of the highest
services of Lord Castlereagh.

In corroboration of those sentiments, if they could require any,
it is observable how rapidly the loudest opponents of the measure
lowered their voices, and adopted the tone of government. Plunket,
the ablest rhetorician of the party--who had made his opposition
conspicuous by the ultra-poetic extravagance, of pledging himself
to swear his sons at the altar, as Hamilcar swore Hannibal to Roman
hostility--took the first opportunity of reconciling his wrath to
office, and settled down into a chancellor. Foster, the speaker,
who had led the opposition, received his salary for life without a
pang, and filled the office of chancellor of the Irish exchequer.
Bushe, the Cicero of the house, glowing with oratorical indignation,
condescended to be chief-justice. All the leaders, when the battle
was over, quietly slipped off their armour, hung up sword and shield
on their walls, put on the peace costume of handsome salary, and
subsided into title and pension.

No one blamed them then, nor need blame them now. They had all been
_actors_--and who shall reproach the actor, when the lamps are put
out and the audience gone, for thinking of his domestic meal, and
dropping into his bed? Nature, like truth, is powerful, and the
instinct of the lawyer _must_ prevail.

One man alone "refused to be comforted." Grattan, the Demosthenes
of Ireland, for years kept, without swearing it, the Carthaginian
oath, which had slipped out of the mind of Plunket. He talked of
the past with the rapt anguish of a visionary, and eschewed human
occupation with the rigid inutility of a member of La Trappe. Grattan
long continued to linger in Ireland, until he was hissed out of his
patriotic romance, and laughed into England. There, he found, that he
had lost the better part of his life in dreams, and that the world
demanded evidence that he had not lived in vain. Fortunately for his
own fame, he listened to the demand; forgot his sorrows over the
dead in the claims of the living; threw in his share to the general
contribution of the national heart against the tyranny of Napoleon;
and by some noble speeches vindicated the character of his national
eloquence, and left an honourable recollection of himself in that
greatest temple of fame and free minds which the world has ever
seen--the parliament of England.

Lord Castlereagh, on the final dissolution of the Irish legislature,
transferred his residence to London, where (in July 1802) he took
office under the Addington ministry as President of the Board of
Control--an appointment which, on the return of Pitt, he retained,
until (in 1805) he was placed by the great minister in the office of
secretary for the war and colonial department.

The death of Pitt (1806) surrendered the cabinet to the Whigs, and
Lord Castlereagh retired with his colleagues. The death of Fox soon
shook the new administration, and their own imprudence broke it up,
(1807.) The Grey and Grenville party were superseded by Perceval; and
Lord Castlereagh returned to the secretaryship at war, which he held
until 1809, when his duel with Canning caused the retirement of both.

In the Memoir, the circumstances of this painful transaction are
scarcely more than referred to; but the reply to a letter from Lord
Castlereagh to the King, distinctly shows the sense of his conduct
entertained in the highest quarter.

"The King has no hesitation in assuring Lord Castlereagh that he has,
at all times, been satisfied with the zeal and assiduity with which
he has discharged the duties of the various situations which he has
filled, and with the exertions which, under every difficulty, he has
made for the support of his Majesty's and the country's interest.

"His Majesty must ever approve of the principle which shall secure
the support and protection of government to officers exposing their
reputation, as well as their lives, in his service; when their
characters and conduct are attacked, and aspersed on loose and
insufficient grounds, without adverting to embarrassments and local
difficulties, of which those on the spot alone can form an adequate
judgment." This, of course, settled the royal opinion; and the
ministerial confidence shortly after reposed in Lord Castlereagh, in
the most conspicuous manner, fully clears his reputation from every
stain.

But the letter confirms one fact, hitherto not much known, yet
which would alone entitle him to the lasting gratitude of the
empire. In allusion to the campaign of Portugal under Moore, and the
appointment of a successor, it adds,--"It was also this impression
which prompted the King to acquiesce in the appointment of so young
a lieutenant-general as Lord Wellington to the command of the troops
in Portugal." Thus, it is to Lord Castlereagh's sense of talent, and
to his public zeal, that we ministerially owe the liberation of the
Peninsula. His selection of the great duke, in defiance of the claims
of seniority, and probably of parliamentary connexion, gave England
seven years of victory, and finally gave Europe the crowning triumph
of Waterloo.

But a still more extensive field of statesmanship was now opened to
him. Canning had left the Foreign Office vacant; before the close
of the year it was given to Lord Castlereagh. Another distinction
followed. The unhappy assassination of Perceval left the premiership
vacant; and Lord Castlereagh, though nominally under Lord Liverpool,
virtually became, by his position in the House of Commons, prime
minister.

There never was a moment of European history, when higher interests
were suspended on the intrepidity, the firmness, and the wisdom of
British council. The Spanish war, difficult, though glorious, was
at all risks to be sustained; Austria had taken up arms, (in 1809,)
was defeated, and was forced to make the bitter peace that follows
disaster. Napoleon, at Erfurth, sat on a throne which looked over
Europe, and saw none but vassals. At home, Opposition flung its old
predictions of evil in the face of the minister, and incessantly
charged him with their realisation. An infirm minister in England at
that crisis would have humiliated her by a treaty; that treaty would
have been but a truce, and that truce would have been followed by
an invasion. But the Secretary never swerved, and his confidence in
the courage of England was rewarded by the restoration of liberty to
Europe.

The fortunes of Napoleon were at length on the wane. France had been
stripped of her veterans by the retreat from Moscow, and the Russian
and German armies had hunted the wreck of the French across the
Rhine. But, in sight of final victory, the councils of the Allies
became divided, and it was of the first importance to reunite them.
An interesting letter of the late Lord Harrowby, to the present
Marquis of Londonderry, gives the narrative of this diplomatic
mission.

"I cannot recollect dates, but it was at the time when you, Lord
Aberdeen, and Lord Cathcart, were accredited to the three sovereigns.
It was mooted in Cabinet, I think, by Lord Castlereagh, whether
it would not be desirable, in order to carry the full weight of
the British Government to bear upon the counsels of the assembled
sovereigns, that some one person should be appointed who might speak
in its name to them all.

"The notion was approved of; and after the Cabinet was over,
Castlereagh called me into his private room, and proposed the mission
to me. I was, of course, highly flattered by such a proposal from
such a person; but I had not a moment's hesitation in telling him,
that I had tried my hand unsuccessfully on a somewhat similar mission
to Berlin, where I had also been accredited to the two Emperors;
that I had found myself quite incompetent to the task, which had
half-killed me; that I thought the measure highly advisable, but that
there was one person only who could execute it, and that person was
himself. He started at first. How could he, as Secretary of State,
undertake it? The thing was unheard of. I then told him, that it was
not strictly true that it had never been done: that Lord Bolingbroke
went to Paris in a diplomatic capacity when Secretary of State; and
that, though in that case the precedent was not a good one, it was
still a precedent, and I believed there were more. The conclusion to
which this conversation led was, that 'he would talk it over with
Liverpool;' and the consequence was that, the next day, or the day
after, his mission was decided."

A letter, not less interesting, from Lord Ripon, gives some striking
particulars of this mission. Lord Ripon had accompanied him to the
Congress. "I allude to his first mission to the Continent, at the
close of 1813. I travelled with him from the Hague to Bâle, where he
first came in contact with any of the ministers of the Allied powers;
and thence we proceeded to Langres, where the headquarters of the
Grand Army were established, and where the allied sovereigns, the
Emperors of Austria and Russia and the King of Prussia, with their
respective ministers, were assembled."

The letter proceeds to state the views of the mission, much of whose
success it attributes to the combined suavity and firmness of Lord
Castlereagh's conduct. But, an instance of his prompt and sagacious
decision suddenly occurred. Blucher's impetuous advance had been
checked, with serious loss, by a desperate assault of Napoleon, who,
availing himself of this success, had fallen upon all the advanced
forces of the Allies. There was wavering at headquarters, and there
were even proposals of retiring beyond the Rhine. It was essential to
reinforce Blucher, but there were no troops at hand. Lord Castlereagh
demanded, "Where were any to be found?" He was answered, that there
were two strong corps of Russians and Prussians under the command
of Bernadotte; but that he was "very tenacious of his command," and
they could not be withdrawn without a tedious negotiation,--in other
words, we presume, without fear of giving that clever but tardy
commander a pretext for abandoning the alliance altogether. The
difficulty was, by a high authority, pronounced _insurmountable_.
Lord Castlereagh, who was present at the council, simply demanded,
"whether the reinforcement was _necessary_;" and, on being answered
in the affirmative, declared that the order must be given; that
England had a right to expect that her allies should not be deterred
from a decisive course by any such difficulties; and that he would
take upon himself all the responsibility that might arise, regarding
the Crown-Prince of Sweden.

The order was issued: Blucher was reinforced; Napoleon was beaten
at Laon; and the campaign rapidly approached its close. Still,
formidable difficulties arose. Napoleon, though he had at last
found that he could not face the army of the Allies, conceived the
daring manoeuvre of throwing himself in their rear--thus alarming
them for their communications, and forcing them to follow him back
through France. The consequences of a desultory war might have been
the revival of French resistance, and the ruin of the campaign. The
manoeuvre became the subject of extreme anxiety in the Allied
camp, and some of the chief authorities were of opinion, that he
ought to be pursued. It is said (though the Memoir has not yet
reached that part of the subject,) that the decision of leaving him
behind, and marching direct on Paris, was chiefly owing to Lord
Castlereagh; who pointed out the weakness of taking counsel from an
enemy, the advantage of finding the road to Paris open at last, and
the measureless political importance of having the capital in their
possession.

This advice prevailed: a few thousand cavalry were sent in the track
of Napoleon, to entrap him into the idea that he was followed by the
Grand Army, while Schwartzenberg marched in the opposite direction;
and the first intelligence which reached the French army was in the
thunderclap which announced the fall of the Empire!

Lord Harrowby's letter, in referring to a subsequent period, gives a
curious instance of the chances on which the highest events may turn.

"Now for my other service in the dark. After the attempt to
assassinate the Duke of Wellington at Paris, the Government was
naturally most anxious to get him away. But how? Under whatever
pretext it might be veiled, _he_ would still call it running away, to
which he was not partial. But, when Castlereagh was obliged to leave
Vienna, in order to attend his duty in parliament, I was fortunate
enough to suggest that the Duke should be sent to replace him; and
that would be a command which he could not refuse to obey.

"When I mentioned this to the Duke, just after I left you--for I was
then quite full of the memory of my little exploits--he quite agreed
that, if he had been at Paris, on the return of Buonaparte to France,
it would have been _highly probable that they would have seized him_.

"Small events are great to little men; and it is not _nothing_,
to have contributed in the smallest degree to the success of
the Congress at Vienna, (nor was it then so called,) and of the
subsequent campaign, and to the saving of the Duke for WATERLOO!"

After this triumphant course of political life, with every gift of
fortune around him, and perhaps the still higher consciousness of
having achieved a historic name, how can we account for the closing
of such a career in suicide?

The only probable cause was the intolerable burden of public
business, by his having in charge the chief weight of the home
department as well as the foreign. His leadership of the House of
Commons was enough to have worn him out. Canning once said--"that no
vigour of mind or body can stand the wear and tear of a minister,
above ten years." Castlereagh had been immersed in indefatigable
toil since 1794. He had stood "the wear and tear" for thirty years.
His life was wholly devoted to business. During the summer he rose
at five, in winter at seven, and frequently laboured for twelve or
fourteen hours in succession.

In person he was tall, with a mild and very handsome countenance in
early life, of which we must regret that the portrait in the first
volume of the Memoir gives but an unfavourable resemblance. The most
faithful likeness is that by Sir Thomas Lawrence, in the Windsor
Gallery of Statesmen, though it has the effeminate air which that
admirable painter had the unlucky habit of giving to his men.

The death of Lord Castlereagh seems to have been justly attributed to
mental exhaustion, with the addition of a fit of the gout, for which
he had taken some depressing medicines. The state of his spirits
was marked by the King, on his Majesty's departure for Scotland.
At the Cabinet Council, he had been observed to remain helplessly
silent, and his signature to public papers had become suddenly almost
illegible. On those symptoms, he was expressly put into the hands
of his physician, and sent to Foot's Cray, his villa in Kent. The
physician attended him until the Monday following. Early on that
day he was hastily summoned, and found his Lordship dead in his
dressing-room.

A letter from the Duke of Wellington conveyed the lamentable
intelligence to the present Marquis, who was then at Vienna. After
some prefatory remarks, the Duke says--"You will have seen, that I
witnessed the melancholy state of mind which was the cause of the
catastrophe. I saw him after he had been with the King on the 9th
instant, to whom he had likewise exposed it. But, fearing that he
would not send for his physician, I considered it my duty to go to
him; and not finding him, to write to him, which, considering what
has since happened, was a fortunate circumstance.

"You will readily believe what a consternation this deplorable event
has occasioned here. The funeral was attended by every person in
London of any mark or distinction, of all parties; and the crowd in
the streets behaved respectfully and creditably."

The Duke's remarks on "the fortunate circumstance" of applying to the
physician, we presume to have meant, the vindication of the Marquis's
character from the guilt of conscious suicide. For the same reason,
we have given the details. They relieve the mind of the Christian
and the Englishman from the conception, that the most accomplished
intellect, and the highest sense of duty, may not be protective
against the mingled crime and folly of self-murder.

We have now given a general glance at the _matériel_ of those
volumes. They contain a great variety of public documents, valuable
to the future historian, though too _official_ for the general
reader. One, however, is too curious to be altogether passed by: it
is from Lord Brougham, (dated 1812,) offering himself for employment
in American affairs:--

"MY LORD,--I am confident that the step which I am now taking cannot
be misconstrued by your lordship. Under the present circumstances, I
beg to make a tender of my services to his Majesty's government in
the conduct of the negotiation with the United States, wheresoever
the same may be carried on.

"I am induced to think that I might be of use as a negotiator in this
affair. I trust it is unnecessary to add, that I can have no motive
of a private or personal nature in making this offer. Should it be
accepted, I must necessarily sustain a considerable injury in my
professional pursuits," &c.

We think that, in giving these volumes to the country, the present
Marquis of Londonderry has not merely fulfilled an honourable
fraternal duty, but has rendered a service to public character.
Faction had calumniated Lord Castlereagh throughout a large portion
of his career. The man who breaks down a fierce rebellion, and who
extinguishes a worthless legislature, must be prepared to encounter
the hostility of all whose crimes he has punished, or whose traffic
he has put to shame. The felon naturally hates the hand which holds
the scales of justice, and, if he cannot strike, is sure to malign.
The contemptuous dignity with which Lord Castlereagh looked down upon
his libellers, and his equally contemptuous disregard of defence, of
course only rendered libel more inveterate; and every low artifice of
falsehood was exerted against the administration of a man who was an
honour to Ireland.

His course in England was in a higher region, and he escaped the
mosquitoes which infest the swamps of Irish political life. Among the
leaders of English party he had to contend with men of honour, and
on the Continent his task was to sustain the cause of Europe. There,
mingling with monarchs in the simplicity of a British gentleman, he
carried with him all the influence of a great British minister, and
entitled himself to that influence by the value of his services. Yet,
among the highest distinctions of his statesmanship, we have but
slight hesitation in naming the rapid overthrow of the rebellion. The
scene was new, the struggle singularly perplexing. Political artifice
was mingled with brute violence. If the spirit of revolt raged in the
superstition, the fears, and the rude memories of peasant life, it
was still more hazardously spread among the professional ranks, whose
ambition was frenzied by the prospect of a republic, or whose guilt
was to be screened by its establishment. He has been charged with
tyranny and torture in its suppression; his correspondence in these
volumes shows the manly view which he took of the true condition of
Ireland.

The question of the safety of Ireland has now come before the
legislature once again, in all its breadth. Is Ireland to be a
perpetual seat of rebellion? is every ruffian to find there only an
armoury? is every faction to find there only a parade-ground? Is
its soil to be a perpetual fount of waters, that can flow only to
poison the healthful channels of society? Is the power of government
to be employed only in the hideous duties of the gaoler and the
executioner? Is the noblest constitution that man has ever seen to be
utterly paralysed, from the moment when it touches a soil containing
millions of our fellow subjects?--and to be paralysed by the act of
these millions?

These are the questions which well may disturb the pillow of the
statesmen of England. We have no hesitation in answering them. As the
ruin of Ireland has been the act of a false religion, its renovation
must be the act of the true. This is no time for tardiness in this
experiment. Revolt has thrown aside its arms, but its antipathy
remains. We shall have revolt upon revolt, until the country is
turned into a field of battle or a sepulchre. If the rude, vulgar,
and cowardly conspirators of the present hour have found followers,
what might not be the national hazard if some valorous hand and
vivid intellect--some one of those mighty men who are born to take
the lead of nations, should marshal the willing multitudes at a time
when England was once again struggling for the liberties of Europe?
Are we to leave Ireland, with all its natural advantages, to the
unchecked progress of superstition, until, like the Roman Campagna,
under the same auspices, it exhibits nothing but a desert, where man
by daylight should put on his swiftest speed, and where he should not
sleep by night, unless he had already taken measure of his grave?

The Memoir prefixed to the official papers in these volumes touches
with singular brevity on the personal characteristics of the late
Marquis of Londonderry.

But the true biography of a public man is to be found in his
public career. There flattery can deceive no longer, and panegyric
is brought to the test of posterity. It fell to the lot of Lord
Castlereagh to take a lead in the _four_ most memorable transactions
of his time;--in the overthrow of the Irish Rebellion; in the
establishment of the Union; in the downfall of the French empire;
and in the settlement of the peace of Europe at the Congress of
Vienna. Those four are his claims on the living gratitude of his
country, and on the homage of the generations to come. The mind
which was equal to those tasks must have been a mind of power; the
determination which could have sustained him, in defiance of all
personal and public danger, must have been of the highest order
of personal and public intrepidity; and the patriotism which, in
every advance of his official distinctions, and every act of his
ministerial duty, directed his steps, as it then raised him above all
the imputations of party, now retains his memory in that elevation,
which partisanship can no more reach than it can comprehend.
Estimable in all the relations of private life, and honourable in all
the trusts of statesmanship, the bitterness of Opposition has never
dared to touch his personal character; and even faction has shown
its sense of his services, by never venturing to insult his tomb. If
the enemies of Ireland remember him with hatred, the historian of
Ireland must record him with honour. If faction in England cannot yet
be reconciled to the man who kept it at bay, it must remember him as
the statesman who was neither to be bought nor baffled; whose life
was a security to the constitution, and whose conduct formed the most
prominent contrast to that of those subsequent possessors of office,
whom it found the means alternately to corrupt and to control.

It is not our wish to offer a rash and groundless panegyric to any
man. We refer simply to the facts--to the eminence of England under
his policy, and to its sudden difficulties under the abandonment
of his principles. We think Lord Castlereagh entitled to the full
tribute which can be paid by national respect to the memory of a
statesman distinguished by courage and conduct, by unblemished
honesty, and by unfailing honour. We think him fully entitled to bear
upon his monument the name of--A GREAT BRITISH MINISTER.

The most passionate avidity for renown cannot desire a nobler name.

FOOTNOTE:

[9] _Memoirs and Correspondence of_ VISCOUNT CASTLEREAGH, (_second_
MARQUIS OF LONDONDERRY.) Edited by his brother, CHARLES VANE, MARQUIS
OF LONDONDERRY. 2 vols. London: Colburn.



A CALL.


    There is a cry throughout the land,
      The needy loudly ask for bread;
    Craving and unappeased they stand,
      They cannot all be duly fed.
    The rich in vain large alms bestow--
      They fail to stem the rising tide
    Of want, and beggary, and woe,
      That hems them in on every side.

    Lo! from the stream that overflows,
      Fresh gushing rivulets roll wide,
    And far from where their source arose,
      They bless the land through which they glide.
    Shall Britain let such lesson fail?
      Shall not her overburthen'd soil
    Afar, where skill and strength avail,
      Send forth the hardy sons of toil?

    Arise, ye peasants, bold and strong!
      Courage! relieve your burthen'd land,
    Toward a gracious country throng
      That needs the willing heart and hand:
    There with a cheerful vigour strive
      For the reward denied ye here,
    Through wholesome industry to thrive,
      With lessening labour, year by year.

    Your many children, that ye feel
      Here as a burthen on your hands,
    There shall enrich ye through their zeal,
      And tend your flocks, and till your lands.
    No cry for bread shall pierce your ear,
      Full harvests shall requite your toil,
    And, bounteously your age to cheer,
      Shall yield ye corn, and wine, and oil.

    Behold the paupers of our land,
      By want made dissolute and rude,
    With sullen heart and wasted hand
      Asking an alms of broken food!
    Behold, and snatch them from despair--
      Give them for effort a fair field,
    With labour their free limbs may bear--
      And toil from vice shall be their shield.

    And ye whose lot is cast above
      Want's perilous and grievous woes!
    Be yours a full free work of love,
      The debt that man his brother owes.
    Bestow not that ye prize the least--
      Give knowledge, valour, skill, and worth.
    Statesman and soldier, lawyer, priest,
      Physician, merchant, go ye forth.

    And, Britain's daughters! give your aid,
      Arise, make ready, cross the wave!
    Ye, for meet help and solace made,
      Go forth to cheer, to bless, to save!
    Let not the exiles vainly ask
      For home and sweet domestic cares;
    Fulfil your high and gracious task--
      Go forth, join heart and hand with theirs.

    And ask ye all, as forth ye go,
      The guidance of a light divine,
    That through the darkest hours shall glow,
      And steadfast in all peril shine.
    Go forth with a believing heart,
      Your Guard is sure by night and day;
    Forth through the wilderness depart--
      Ye shall find manna on your way.

                              JULIA



WHAT IS SPAIN ABOUT?


Whilst France, writhing under self-inflicted wounds, is preserved
from anarchy only by despotism; whilst Germany, convulsed by the
imitative folly of her children, enacts a travestie of Paris
tragedies; and Italy, like a froward child, screaming to go alone
before she can walk, kicks at her leading-strings, and falls upon
her nose--the affairs of a third-rate power, such as Spain has
dwindled into, have naturally enough been overlooked and forgotten.
It is time to recur to them for a moment. Spain has once been, and
yet again may be, a leading member of the European family. Under a
better government, she again may see days of prosperity and peace.
Again her merchant-fleets may cover the seas, her traders be renowned
for enterprise and wealth, her population be commensurate with the
extent and productiveness of her territory. And this may occur whilst
nations, but yesterday paramount in riches and power, sink by their
own madness into impotence and poverty. Her rise will not be more
astonishing than their decadence.

At present, it appears the destiny of Spain to be misgoverned at home
and misunderstood abroad. The insurrection now budding into life and
vigour in so many of her provinces illustrates this proposition.
Originating in the grossest maladministration, out of Spain its
scope and nature, and the possible importance of its results, are
misconceived and underrated. It differs from any previous revolt
since the death of Ferdinand VII., inasmuch as it is less the
effort of a party, striving for the success of a principle and a
man, than the uprising of a nation struggling to shake off the yoke
of a galling and intolerable tyranny. There can be no doubt that
a very large majority of the Spanish people heartily wish success
to the movement against the existing government of the country.
Unfortunately, a majority of this majority confine themselves to
wishing, instead of putting their hand to the work, which then
would soon be done. Their lukewarmness, however, can hardly be
wondered at, when we remember how many of them have sacrificed
property and security to their political convictions, and ruined
themselves in the strife of parties. Of these parties, the two most
numerous, long opposed to each other, and whose tenets once stood
wide as the poles asunder, have forgotten old hatreds, made mutual
sacrifices, and joined heart and hand against the common foe. The
result is, the division of the country into two camps. On the one
hand is the Queen-mother--in whose dexterous fingers Isabella is a
mere puppet--Narvaez, O'Donnell, and the rest of the corrupt cabal
from the Rue de Courcelles. These have possession of the machinery
and _matériel_ of the state. They hold the purse, which places at
their devotion two armies, one of soldiers, the other of policemen,
_employés_, spies, and venal emissaries of all kinds. To use a simile
appropriate to the times, they have got upon the engine and tender,
coals and water are at their command; but they misguide the train and
ill-treat the passengers, clamorous for escape from their control.
Spain, let Madrid papers argue and deny as they will, is in a state
of general fermentation and violent discontent; on the brink of a
convulsion which may very possibly end in the ousting of Isabella
II., and in the enthronement of her cousin, the Count de Montemolin.
In Spain a republic is an impossibility, and almost without
partisans; and if the present queen be swept away by the tide of
national indignation against her unscrupulous mother, the crown must
naturally devolve upon the son of Don Carlos. At least, he is the
only eligible candidate--we may even say, the only possible one. Don
Francisco, the Incapable, would of course depart with his wife; his
brother, Don Enrique, convicted of instability and of treachery to
his party, would have nobody's support; and the Duke of Montpensier
is so totally out of the question, so wholly without adherents
as an aspirant to the Spanish throne, that we have difficulty in
crediting a statement confidently made by persons worthy of belief,
that the recent victim of a great revolution still directs, from his
retirement in this country, intrigues designed to place a crown upon
the head of the youngest hope of the house of Orleans. On the other
hand, the Carlist party is still strong in Spain--much stronger,
comparatively speaking, than it was two or three years ago; for it
has clung together and preserved its integrity, whilst other parties
have split and become dismembered. And although the bulk of the
Spanish people may be less anxious to get any one man, or set of
men, into power, than to get rid of those who at present so brutally
roughride them; yet the conviction has been gradually gaining
strength that, by character, education, and fair promises, the Count
de Montemolin offers the best guarantees for that firm, impartial,
and just government, under which alone is there a chance of Spain
being raised from her present sunken and unprosperous condition. The
Progresistas, who fiercely hated and fought against the father, rally
round the son, persuaded that from Isabella, so long their idol, they
would in vain look for a realisation of their political programme. Of
their cordial understanding and co-operation with the Carlists there
now can hardly exist a doubt. A very brief retrospect will suffice to
explain its causes and foundation.

When Louis Philippe completed the job of the Spanish marriages,
the Carlists--who, although grievously stricken and disheartened
by the treaty of Bergara, had never entirely ceased to labour for
the attainment of their one great end--rested upon their arms,
and awaited in comparative inaction the dawn of better days. They
abandoned not hope, nor abjured intrigue; but they may be said to
have ceased, for a while, to conspire. In their fallen state, with
their slender resources, what could they do against the puissant King
of the French? For he it was against whom they must contend, did they
venture to assail the throne of Isabella, and to dispute the rule of
Christina. In England, too, their old enemies, the Whigs, had just
come into power; the name of Palmerston was a sound of ill omen to
Carlist ears; Bilbao and British marines, Passages and Commodore Hay,
were words inseparably coupled, and pregnant with fatal memories
to the upholders of legitimacy in Spain. Supposing that, by dint
of indefatigable exertions, they succeeded in raising funds, in
mustering an army, ill entering Spain sword in hand--forthwith they
were met by that ugly and unnatural monster, the Quadruple Alliance,
waiting, open-mouthed, to blast them to the four winds of heaven.
An attempt, under such circumstances, would have been worse than
useless; it would have been squandering a chance, and the Carlists
had none to throw away. So they waited and watched. Meanwhile, what
did the rulers of Spain--the persons governing behind the mask of
that poor, ill-brought-up, ill-used princess, Isabella? It was
natural to suppose that, having many enemies in the country--many
persons and parties whose ambitions and interests were checked
and thwarted by their ascendency--they would endeavour, as far as
possible, to conciliate and gain over these, or at any rate to secure
the support of the masses, by moderation and good government. A very
moderate amount of this latter, be it observed, would have sufficed
to gain them popularity, and to give stability to their reign. The
nation had endured so much--had suffered so terribly from civil wars,
rebellions, reactions, and the like--that all they expected, almost
all they asked, was to be kicked gently. They dared not think the
screw would be altogether taken off; but, considering the damaged
state of their articulations, they did hope it would be a little
eased. A man who had undergone a course of knout, might look upon
a cat-o'-nine tails as a blessed exchange, and be ready to hug the
drummers who applied it. This was exactly the case with Spain, long
drained by war-contributions and ravaged by contending factions.
From her state of exhaustion and suffering she had not had time to
recover during the honest and conscientious, but brief and too gentle
rule of Espartero. Never was there a finer chance for a party coming
into power than the Christinos or Moderados had, when they seized
the reins. The ball was at their foot, and they had but to pick it
up. Instead of that, they kicked it away. A little of the moderation
their political designation implies--a little, a very little, of
the patriotism and disinterestedness always so loud in their mouths,
and so wanting in their deeds, and they might have won the hearts
of their weary, war-worn countrymen. That moderation--they had it
not, and when vaunting their patriotism they thought only of their
profit. No sooner were they in power than they abandoned themselves
to their vicious instincts, and thought but of filling their pockets.
Christina reverted to her old system of unscrupulous appropriation;
Narvaez, having filled the higher military grades with his creatures,
and made the army his own by pampering and flattery, gave free play
to the unbounded brutality of his nature. Universal corruption became
the order of the day, extending through every administration, from
the minister of the crown down to subalterns and clerks. The revenue,
increasing in the very teeth of Spanish financiers--and which, by
the commonest honesty and the most ordinary amount of ability, might
soon have been rendered sufficient to meet the expenditure of the
country, and the long-neglected claims of the foreign creditor--was
so extravagantly collected, and paid tribute to so many infamous
peculators, that it was hardly recognisable in the reduced form in
which it ultimately reached the treasury. The country groaned, the
honest were indignant, the oppressed murmured, the boldest plotted.
Groans and indignation, murmurs and plots, were alike in vain; alike
they were arbitrarily silenced and crushed. Narvaez and his bayonets
were there, keeping the peace; whilst Christina and her friends, with
smooth and smiling countenances, picked up the doubloons. Quick! a
short shrift and a sharp cartridge for the first who speaks above
his breath. This did for a time, and might have done longer, for
in Spain he who holds the purse holds the power: besides which,
the red breeks of King Louis Philippe's cohorts showed menacingly
along the Pyrenees; and Lord Palmerston, although he had been so
scurvily treated in the matter of the marriages, might still, it was
thought, be induced, in case of need, to send a frigate or two, and a
battalion of marines, to protect his old ally Christina, should any
serious rebellion break out. But one morning the Parisians turned
their king out of his house; and the day afterwards, the Spanish
government, whilst labouring under delirium of some kind, ejected
Mr Bulwer from his; thus throwing, as the saying goes, the haft
after the blade, quarrelling with England at the very moment they
most needed her assistance, and remaining exposed, without hope of
succour, to the assaults and machinations of their numerous enemies.
Whereupon there was an immediate cocking of every Carlist beaver in
or out of Spain. The old chiefs, who for six years had starved and
struggled in the cause of their king, (succumbing finally before a
general's treachery rather than to the arms of their foes,) looked
out from the nooks where they long had rusted in retirement or exile,
and more than one was heard, in the words of the old Jacobite song,

    To shout to the north, where his leader shall roam--
    'Tis time now for Charlie, our king, to come home.

There was a like stir amongst the Progresistas, who were being
hanged, banished and imprisoned by the score, on account of revolts
and disturbances in which they had less share than the secret agents
of their persecutors. Either from presumptuous confidence in their
own strength, or because they deemed they had gone too far to recede,
and that it was too late to adopt a conciliatory policy, the clever
gentlemen in power at Madrid, not content with reviving, by their
insane foreign policy, the hopes of two powerful and hostile parties,
continued to increase the number of their domestic enemies by
persevering in a system of tyranny and persecution. The consequence
has been a coalition from which they have every thing to dread--a
coalition which has been denied by those interested to place it in
doubt, but whose existence each succeeding day renders more manifest.

It may be asked how it is possible for stanch absolutists, such as
the Carlists have always been, to coalesce with men of such liberal
principles as the Progresistas profess. This question is replied
to in three words. When he accepted his father's renunciation in
his favour of his claims upon the crown of Spain, Count Montemolin
did not bind himself to adhere to his father's prejudices, or to
the less tolerant part of his political creed. During nine years'
detention and exile, the young prince, whose adherents claim for him
the rights and title of Charles VI. of Spain, has doubtless become
convinced of the impossibility of ever bringing back the country he
aspires to reign over to the old system of irresponsible absolutism
and priestly tyranny,--a system rendered especially odious by the
weakness and vices of the two last monarchs who governed by it.
The Progresistas, on their part, desire no exclusive favour, no
monopoly of power: compelled to withdraw their support from her they
once enthusiastically defended, they have no other candidate to put
forward. Don Enrique, in whom they once were disposed to confide,
basely sold and betrayed them; and as to Espartero, whose ambition
has been the subject of such fierce diatribes on the part of the
ignorant and the malicious, both in Spain and in England--the idea
of his aspiring to regal power appears too ridiculous, to those
acquainted with his simple tastes and unobtrusive worth, to be for an
instant dwelt upon and seriously refuted. No; all the Progresistas
ask is a free press, elections conducted without bribery or bayonets,
security for persons and property. Do one of these things exist in
Spain now? Let facts reply. We read the answer in the suppression or
silence of every Opposition newspaper; in the packed benches of the
Cortes; in the imprisonment, banishment, and confiscation, without
stated accusation or form of trial, of hundreds of innocent persons.
From this tyranny, than which none can be worse, the Count de
Montemolin promises relief. The Progresistas accept his pledge, and
rally round his standard.

The Madrid government, which, since the commencement of the present
year, has constantly provoked petty disturbances, as pretexts for
arbitrarily consigning to the dungeon or the colonies as many as
possible of those they dislike or fear, now find themselves face to
face with a real insurrection of most formidable aspect. They have
cried wolf till the wolf has come, and they run considerable risk
of being devoured. In vain they deny their peril, affect to bluster
and talk big; their real alarm peeps through the flimsy cloak of
bravado. A government confident of its strength, and of the support
and sympathies of the governed, does not condescend to treat and
tamper with rebels. If the insurgents be so contemptible in numbers
and resources as the organs of Narvaez and the Queen-mother daily
assert them to be, why not crush them at once, instead of attempting
to buy over their chiefs, who, on their part, pocket the bribes and
laugh at their seducers? If Cabrera, for weeks together, lay sick
and bedridden in a Catalonian village, why was not a detachment,
or, if necessary, a division, sent to apprehend him? Such flimsy
impostures deceive no one. The truth is, that, with the exception
of a few fortified places, the east of Spain is in the hands of the
Carlists and Progresistas, who come up to the walls of the cities
and levy contributions at the very gates. The north only waits the
signal to burst into revolt; in the Castiles alarming demonstrations
are daily made, and armed bands show themselves on various points; in
the large commercial towns in the south, whose desire for a revision
of the present absurd Spanish tariff renders them ardent liberals,
discontent smoulders, and in an instant may burst into a flame. There
are Andalusian cities where the appearance of Espartero, or of some
other popular and influential Progresista, would at once raise the
entire population. At present, however, the revolt is in its infancy,
and can hardly be said to have begun. Its chiefs avoid encounters,
and busy themselves with organisation--which proceeds rapidly, in
spite of the marches and countermarches of Messrs Cordova, Pavia,
Villalonga, and the other Christino generals, and of the glorious
victories narrated in the columns of the _Heraldo_ and other equally
veracious journals. According to these, Cabrera has already been
several times totally routed and driven over the frontier. We have
strong grounds for believing that, up to this moment,--although
his lieutenants have been engaged in small affrays, of little or no
importance, but terminating, with scarcely an exception, in their
favour--he himself has not smelt powder, burned in anger, since he
left Spain in 1840. He waits the proper moment, when his arrangements
shall be completed, to commence operations upon a large scale; and
meanwhile he very judiciously avoids frittering away his strength in
profitless skirmishes. By the last advices worthy of credit, he is at
the head of six thousand men, well armed and uniformed, and nearly
all old soldiers, in high spirits and thorough discipline. This force
does not include the numerous detached and irregular bands spread
over Catalonia and Valencia, or various bodies of Progresistas, who
march under their own banner, but are on the best of terms with
the Carlists, and will co-operate with them in the day of battle.
Arms and ammunition are procured without difficulty from France
and England. The French Republic has its hands too full to attend
seriously to such trifles. Although General Cavaignac, to get rid
of the importunities of that blatant knave Sotomayor, did order the
arrest of a brace of unlucky Progresistas, there is little chance of
his carrying out the preventive system to a rigorous extent, or of
his depriving the starving French manufacturers of the crust they may
obtain by fabricating arms and clothing for the Carlist troops. As
to England, she is, of course, in no way called upon to prevent the
export of Birmingham muskets and Hounslow cartridges, even should she
suspect their destination to be different from that entered at the
custom-house. Indeed, it is shrewdly suspected that Lord Palmerston
would like nothing better than to see his quondam friends ejected
from Spain, and to resume amicable relations with that country by
accrediting an ambassador to the court of Charles VI.

It is worthy of remark that Cabrera, who made himself so
notorious, during the last civil war in Spain, by his barbarous
cruelties--provoked, but not justified, by his mother's
murder--appears now to have adopted a totally different system,
and to have exchanged his ferocity for moderation and humanity. We
hear of no more cold-blooded shooting of prisoners, or wanton and
unprovoked aggressions; Christino soldiers who have fallen into his
hands, or into those of his subordinates, have been disarmed and
set at liberty; good treatment has been shown to magistrates and
other officials, carried off as hostages or held for ransom. The
contributions levied on the country have been regularised, and are
willingly paid; the peasantry receive the insurgents as liberators,
instead of shunning them as spoilers. Furious at this state of
things, which they can neither alter nor conceal, the Christinos
know not how to show their wrath, or on whom to wreak it; and the
means they resort to for the expression of their spite are perfectly
suicidal. The unfortunate _Constitucional_ of Barcelona, one of
the few remaining papers in Spain which now and then venture to
speak the truth, is arbitrarily suppressed for drawing a faithful
picture of the state of the province; whilst the very next day one
of the government generals confirms the truth of the sketch, and the
disaffection of the peasants, by enforcing the premature gathering
in of the fruits of the earth, to rot and perish in store, and by
forbidding the labourer to carry to the field more than six ounces
of food, lest he should sell or give it to the Carlists--annexing to
these stringent enactments others equally onerous and tyrannical.
All this time, at Madrid and in other cities, arrests continue; and
every day fresh victims are consigned to Ceuta, the Philippines, or
the prisons, their relatives and friends being thenceforward added to
the host of the disaffected. Why, this is stark-staring madness!--the
insanity, preceding perdition, with which God afflicts those he would
destroy. To discomfiture and destruction, total and lasting, the
party still dominant in Spain are to all appearance hastening. None
will pity their fall. They will be condemned not only by all just
men, but by the most reckless advocates of political expediency;
for they have been blind to their own true interests, as well as
unblushingly contemptuous of every principle of morality and good
government.



CONSERVATIVE UNION.


No private calamity which has occurred for years has so startled
the mind of England as the withdrawal of Lord George Bentinck from
the scene of his useful labours. In the prime of life, in the full
possession of a vigorous and masculine intellect, at the head of
a large and increasing political party, who revered him for his
unsullied honour, and loved him for his undaunted courage, he has
been taken from us by one of those mysterious visitations which are
sent as a token that the destinies of the world are indeed in the
hands of God. Short as was his public career, he had won for himself
a name which will not lightly die away in the history of his country,
and his memory will be cherished among us as that of a man who had
the welfare of Britain thoroughly at heart; and who, in an age of
degenerate and vacillating statesmanship, had the firmness to tear
off the mask from the features of hypocrisy, and to expose the awful
consequences of that culpable race for power which has effected the
partial disorganisation of this great and once prosperous empire.

The loss of such a man at such a time is indeed far more a public
than a private calamity. As such, it has been felt throughout the
realm by thousands who understood the true position of Bentinck as
the champion of native industry, and the utter uncompromising foe of
that selfish and sordid system which seeks to aggrandise the few at
the cost of the labouring many. A large proportion even of those who
originally yielded to the deleterious doctrines of the free-traders,
but who, through sad and wholesome experience, had become alive
to the folly and iniquity of the modern scheme, were gathering
confidence from his unremitting exertions, and preparing to rank
themselves by his side. In him the British colonies have lost their
firmest friend and advocate. The noble struggle which he made this
year in behalf of the oppressed and defrauded West Indian planters,
was, in the opinion of many who knew him well, the proximate cause of
his death; for a similar amount of physical and intellectual labour
has hardly ever been undertaken even by a professional man, and never
without the imminent risk of shattering the constitution.

We should ill perform our duty to the public, and to the
constitutional party whose cause we have undeviatingly supported,
if we omitted to take this last sad opportunity of testifying our
respect for the memory of so valuable a man. The tendency of the
present age is to estimate merit by success, and to offer its sole
homage to the winner of the desperate game. But those who look deeper
into the secret springs of human action and impulse, can hardly fail
to recognise in Bentinck a character invested with that rare chivalry
and devotion which, by common consent, we accept as the attribute of
our purest patriots and heroes. Chicanery, deceit, and falsehood were
utterly abhorrent to his mind. He had no taste for those state tricks
which have superseded the old manly English method, and no sympathy
for those who used them. He went into the arena of politics as a
soldier might go to battle, confident in the integrity and justice
of the cause in which he was engaged, and determined to maintain it
to the last against any weight of opposition. It was this resolute
and undaunted spirit which at once raised him from comparative
obscurity to the rank of a great parliamentary leader; for those who
co-operated with him knew well that they were dealing with a man
superior to all intrigue, and ready to lay down his life rather than
infringe, in the slightest degree, on the pledge which he had offered
to his country.

We have no hesitation in saying this, because we are certain that no
one will question the sincerity of our conviction. During the last
two years, and almost without intermission, we have been compelled to
devote a large portion of our space to the consideration of public
questions, and of the political difficulties of the time. On more
than one point our views were seriously opposed to those entertained
and advocated by Lord George Bentinck; nor have we concealed our
opinion that his tactics, however bold, were not the best adapted
for accomplishing the object which we have most warmly at heart, the
reconstitution of the Conservative party upon such clear and defined
principles as may rescue the country from its present perilous
position.

We feel that the necessity of such a union is so plain and
urgent--that the danger of allowing the affairs of Britain to be
longer administered by a feeble but stubborn ministry has been so
clearly demonstrated--that we cannot any longer afford to remain
inactive, or to indulge in idle recrimination. The safety of the
country peremptorily demands the adoption of a different policy, and
the resumption of the reins of government by hands that are capable
of holding them. It is for the gentlemen of England to decide whether
they shall adopt such a course by uniting cordially hand and heart
to retrieve us from our present embarrassments, or sit idly by as
mere spectators of a fatal course of legislation. The present crisis
is by far too serious to be viewed with indifference, or through the
coloured glass of obsolete party interest. The welfare of the empire
is at stake, and that is a subject with which none of us can dare to
dally.

What are the differences which at present separate one section of
the Conservatives from the other? They resolve themselves simply
into the adhesion of a few talented, but we must say obstinate men,
to a leader whose tortuous policy has been the main cause of our
present unhappy position. We have no wish to say hard things even of
Sir Robert Peel. We believe, and devoutly hope, that his reign of
office is over, and that no combination of circumstances may occur
to bring him back, even for the shortest period, into power; and,
believing and hoping this, we are content to let him alone, and leave
him to the judgment of that posterity which he is so peculiarly
prone to invoke. But we ask those who have clung with such extreme
tenacity to his cause, seriously to view the effect of the late
legislative measures upon the community at large--to consider how
far the result of the free-trade scheme has corresponded with the
nature of its promise--and to reflect upon the present precarious
state of our oldest and most valuable dependencies. We blame no
one for having entertained an opinion conscientiously differing
from our own. There may not be any disgrace in having, consented
to an experiment which, when put into practice, has resulted in an
absolute failure; but there is disgrace, ay, and infinite dishonour,
in refusing to acknowledge an error when its consequences are made
palpably manifest, and in persisting to gloss it over for the sake of
an egotistical consistency. We do not believe that high-minded and
honourable men will be guilty of such vain and frivolous conduct; and
it is in that belief that we make our present most urgent appeal.

Look at the effect of our present free-trade laws, not only upon
the revenue, but upon the internal industry of Britain. Is it not
clear and utterly beyond dispute, that our exports, for which we
have sacrificed every thing, are greatly on the decline, and that
our imports are steadily increasing? Not even the merest tyro in
political science,--not even the dullest dolt that clamoured at
the meetings of the League,--will venture to affirm that this is a
state of things which can continue without entailing ruin on the
country; and yet the Whigs, with that insensibility and sottishness
which is as much their characteristic as obstinacy, have announced
for next session their intention of pushing the experiment further!
For a year, we have had no budget, a circumstance entirely without
a parallel in parliamentary history. The excess of the national
expenditure above the revenue has been stated at the enormous sum
of a million and a half, though we believe that in reality three
millions would not cover the deficiency; and a considerable item even
of that revenue is to be cut off from us, when the act repealing
the corn law shall come into full operation. We cannot look for any
improvement in trade whilst we leave our markets open to the produce
of foreign labour, and allow the wealthy classes to be supplied
with almost all their articles of consumption from an unremunerating
source. We must again look to the customs as our main source of
revenue, and more than that, as our absolute salvation from the
anarchy which must ensue, if the hundred small non-exporting trades
of the country are to be sacrificed for the monopoly of the few, and
the millions engaged in these pursuits made beggars and driven to
desperation.

And what is the state of the monopoly? How have the manufacturers
gained? Let FOUR MILLIONS of diminished exports _on the half year_
only, and the suppression of the Manchester return of the number of
unemployed operatives in the very metropolis of the League, be the
reply. Yes--it has come to this pass, that the free-traders DARE
not publish to the world the results of their own madness. In the
month of June last, there were within a fraction of EIGHT THOUSAND
workmen without employment in Manchester alone, and the numbers were
increasing so fast, that it was deemed expedient to discontinue
the startling return. How can we be surprised that Chartism and
disaffection are rankling in men's minds, when we take such
deliberate pains to make them paupers?

We are told that the state of the Continent is such that our export
market is impeded. Let us for the moment admit that such is the
case, and let us see what sort of argument that furnishes for the
continuance of the present system. Is it deliberately proposed that
we are to remain with our ports open, until France and Germany, and
Spain and Italy, are tranquillised? Are the prophets of peace still
so sanguine of the speedy realisation of their visions? Are we to
wait for years--with an increasing debt, a diminished revenue, and
still further stagnation of employment--until our brethren on the
other side of the Channel have reconciled their jarring theories of
Red Republics and of unity, adjusted their boundaries, and again
betaken themselves to the arts of peace? Our own constitution may
well be shattered before that consummation can arrive! But the truth
is, that, in many respects, the Continental disturbances are not
unfavourable to our export trade. If, on the one hand, they have
occasioned a less degree of consumption; on the other, they have
paralysed industry and depreciated capital abroad. Belgium, it is
true, is a formidable competitor for our staples in the foreign
market; but, notwithstanding, we do not expect any serious diminution
in this branch of our foreign trade. The evil of which we complain
is chronic, and it has not been caused by any sudden or violent
convulsions.

It is to our colonies that we must look for the cause of our
diminished exports. It was our paramount duty and obligation to
have fostered these, and to have made them, by a wise system of
reciprocity, at once the best supporters of our power, and the most
sure and steady consumers of our manufactured produce. We have done
nothing of this. On the contrary, the course which we have thought
proper to pursue towards those integral portions of the empire has
been marked by tyranny and injustice. We have ruined the West Indies,
and yet we wonder why they do not consume our cottons! Our weak and
ridiculous legislation, without foresight and without principle,
has not only retarded the progress of the colonies, but absolutely
frightened them out of our market; and unless a very different system
is speedily adopted, we may have bitter occasion to rue our folly,
and to curse the selfishness of the men who, from mere lust of
personal power, have sacrificed the best interests of the nation.

How, then, have the manufacturers gained by free trade? On the one
hand, they have not been able, by inviting and giving every facility
to imports, to increase the quantity of their export; on the other,
they have closed up several of their surest markets. The full extent
of our egregious folly has not yet become visible to the public. The
manufacturers, by a sort of retributive justice, are the persons
who are feeling it the most, and ere long they will be compelled to
acknowledge it. It is seriously affecting the trade and commerce
of our greatest cities. The number of vessels which have cleared
out of the Clyde from the port of Glasgow during the last nine
months, is in the proportion of 382 to 602 for the same period in
the previous year! Glasgow, as every one knows, owed its rise and
opulence to its connexion with the colonies, more especially the West
Indies; and here is the heaviest blow which probably was ever heard
of in the history of commerce, struck, through free trade, at the
second city of Britain. It is good that we should know these things;
better if, by revolving them, we can turn experience to advantage.
Let the electors throughout the kingdom, more especially in the
towns, meditate seriously before they are again called on to use
their political franchise; let them reflect on their own diminished
prosperity, and beware of that hollow liberalism combined with
quackery which is the stain and the curse of the age.

To this position we have been brought by a bad commercial policy,
originated by mean and mercenary men, and most unhappily adopted
by a minister who became a convert towards the close of a long
official life. We have seen and felt the system as it works; and
the only question now for our consideration is, whether we are to
suffer it to endure? If we do so, it is vain to deny that we are on
the verge of general ruin. There is not a symptom of improvement.
Day by day the cry of distress waxes louder, and yet we hesitate to
take the necessary steps for effecting our own emancipation. There
is hardly one man in the country--the bailie of Blairgowrie perhaps
excepted--who can have, or feels, the slightest confidence in the
abilities of Lord John Russell. Such a cabinet as this, in point of
political decrepitude and imbecility, was never yet formed; and it
could not live for an hour save for the unseemly dissensions in the
Conservative camp. These cannot be permitted to last. There is no
merit in personal devotion when pushed beyond its proper sphere; and
the best service which Sir Robert Peel can render to his sovereign,
is utterly to abjure all pretension of ever returning to power.
Surely he can have no wish to head a reactionary movement, or expose
himself to the obloquy of recanting the last edition of his views.

There is another reason why the Conservatives are imperatively called
upon to unite. Recent disclosures of a very startling nature have
forced upon us the conviction, that the Whigs are worse than weak,
and that they cannot be depended on as steadfast guardians of the
crown. There is more in the famous letter written by Mr Thomas Young,
formerly private secretary to Lord Melbourne, than meets the eye.
We attach no undue importance to this epistle--we shall not stoop
so low as to examine the motives and intention of its author. His
own attempted explanation is, if possible, more damning than the
treasonable missive itself. We could only, were we to exhaust our
whole powers of illustration, repeat what has been already stated
in the masterly article of the _Standard_. It is as clear as day,
that at the time of the passing of the Reform Bill, the underlings
of the Whig administration were cognisant of a hideous project for a
violent and bloody revolution, and that, to take the mildest point
of view, they concealed that knowledge from their masters. Franks
were obtained _from the Home Office_, for the purpose of suborning
the loyalty of at least one officer, high in his Majesty's service,
and proposing to him the odious part of a leader in a popular
insurrection. Whether that letter, written as it probably was in
the fullest confidence, ought or ought not to have seen the light,
especially after the lapse of so many years, is a matter with which
we have no concern. That is a question which is only personal to
Mr Young and his correspondent; but we have the document, and the
whole nation is entitled to inquire into its tenor. And never, upon
any accusation of so grave a nature, was a more miserable defence
preferred. In fact there can be, and there is, no escape from the
legitimate conclusion. At that time a section of the Whigs were
ready, for the sake of carrying their own scheme, not only to have
connived at, but to have lent their whole influence to a popular
outbreak and rising, which might, in all human probability, have been
subversive of the constitution of the country. Lord Melbourne might
not have known of that letter: we go farther, and state our positive
opinion that he was utterly ignorant of its existence, because,
however we may have differed from him in politics, he is a man whose
personal honour and loyalty have always been free from a stain. We
believe--and are glad in stating it--that he was utterly ignorant
of the vile treason which was hatching in his own department; but
we shall not extend the same shelter of belief to others of his
unpatriotic party. That treason was meditated is plain; and very
thankful shall we be if the higher order of the Whigs shall take the
pains, by disavowing and repudiating the acts of their subordinates,
and by withdrawing from those implicated the unmerited rewards
of their sedition, to clear themselves from the heavy suspicion
which this document undoubtedly affixes on their loyalty. It is a
disclosure too grave to be met with a light explanation. The fact of
meditated treason, known to Whig officials, has transpired, and we
are entitled to know how far upwards the rank contagion had spread.

That letter, apart from its historical value, is important at the
present moment, inasmuch as we think that no one can peruse it
without feeling convinced that, in any struggle for power, the Whigs
would have no scruple in sacrificing principle to their interest.
They have done so already repeatedly, and their tactics have always
been to retain or recover office by making large concessions to
the demands of the Radical or the Irish party. We are not without
apprehension that they are, even now, contemplating some move of a
similar nature, to be made during the ensuing session of Parliament,
for the purpose of retrieving some portion of their lost popularity.
The Radical party have openly threatened to withdraw their support
from the ministry unless some increase of the suffrage shall be
granted; and an agitation to that effect would be particularly
palatable to the free-traders, as it might tend, in some degree,
to draw public attention from the utter failure of their schemes.
Any movement, in such a direction, would be followed by the most
disastrous consequences. A further infusion of the popular element
into the House of Commons, would simply lead to greater encroachments
on the constitution, more reckless experiments upon the stability
of our trade and commerce, and more culpable bidding by ministries
for popularity in every shape. Where is to be the end of such an
agitation--unless, indeed, we were to follow the notable examples
of France and Germany, and adopt universal suffrage--if, on each
occasion when the country is suffering under the pressure of noxious
laws, no mode of relief can be suggested, save through an extension
of the Reform Bill? We should have thought that the success of the
first experiment was not quite so conspicuous as to invite another
of the same nature. The impudence of the Radical faction is really
almost incredible. Mr Cobden and his confederates have got free
trade, from the effects of which we are presently languishing; and
they now propose to revive our spirits and replenish our purses by
stocking the House of Commons with an additional importation of men
of precisely the same caste and opinions as their own! We suspect
that the funds would scarce be lively if the country were assured
that forty Brights, instead of one, were seated in our National
Assembly.

We therefore again implore the Conservatives to unite without loss
of time, since in their hands alone can we have a thorough guarantee
for the safety of the crown, the stability of the national churches,
and for the integrity of the constitution. Let all lukewarmness, all
promptings of personal ambition, all latent rancour, and all absurd
and unreciprocated confidence, be given to the winds at once; and let
us seriously and diligently apply ourselves to the task of recalling
to Britain and her colonies that measure of prosperity which we
possessed before evil counsels prevailed, and which, even now, is not
beyond our power to recall. The industrious classes of the community,
impoverished and straitened as they have been, have a right to this
service from the high-minded gentlemen of England. The power and the
ability are with us, if we only testify the disposition; and surely
it is madness to remain at idle feud while the enemy are visible at
the gate.

These remarks are not based upon mere speculation. We are well
assured that, during the last few months, much progress has
been made towards a thorough fusion of the two sections of the
Conservative party, upon clear and common grounds. All difficulties
would by this time probably have been removed, but for the scruples
of two or three gentlemen who are supposed to possess the private
confidence of Sir Robert Peel, and who have hitherto identified
themselves with his fortunes. Now, as it must be perfectly apparent
to any man of common reflection, that the bulk of the Conservatives
never can, under any circumstances, consent to act under the
leadership of Peel; as he himself has, over and over again, publicly
stated that no motive or consideration would induce him to return
to power--it is absolutely incomprehensible to us how such scruples
can exist in the minds of the individuals to whom we allude, if
they really believe in the sincerity of this last declaration of
their leader. No one wants him to take office, and he says that
he will not accept it. So far all are agreed. If we believed that
any one of these distinguished and honourable men is convinced
that the commercial policy of the last three years has been wise
and sound, and that, with any amount of trial, it can terminate
otherwise than fatally for the interests of the country, we should
have no right to address them upon a subject so momentous as this,
and certainly no desire for one moment to gain their co-operation.
But we can very well distinguish betwixt a feeling of strong
attachment to an individual whose talents they have been accustomed
to respect, but whose views they have only partially penetrated,
and a settled conviction in the soundness of the policy which it
has been his destiny to originate. We believe that, hitherto, the
former sentiment, and not the latter one, must be taken as the true
explanation of their conduct--that they are unwilling to abandon
the man, although they have lost their faith in the efficacy of his
measures. Now, if this be the case, how can they justify themselves
for opposing, upon such slender grounds, the reconstruction of the
Conservative party? They must be well aware that Sir Robert Peel has
forfeited for ever the confidence of a large majority of those who,
a few years ago, were his most steadfast and faithful followers,
and that far more through his own deliberate acknowledgment of
double-dealing, than from a mere change of opinion upon any one
point of commercial policy, however important it might appear. It
may be the misfortune of Peel, rather than his fault, that he cannot
estimate the proper value of plain manly confidence and unshrinking
candour; that he has invariably declined the straight for the
crooked path; and that an excess of ingenuity--a vast misfortune
for a statesman--has tempted him to meddle, repeatedly and almost
incessantly, with interests far too important to be approached except
with extreme deliberation. These are the considerations which must
preclude him from being restored to his former rank as leader of the
great Conservative party; and we notice them now, not as matter of
blame to him, but in explanation of the general feeling. And we go
further than this. We say that, in order to render the Conservative
union enduring, it will be absolutely necessary to reconstruct the
party upon clear, avowed, solid, and proclaimed principles, so that
no doubt whatever may be left as to the course which in future is to
be pursued. Instead of that shifting and wavering policy which has
paralysed our colonies, terrified our merchants, and depressed the
money market, we must resolve upon a definite plan for the future,
which shall restore confidence, and secure us, so far as may be,
against the recurrence of similar disasters. We must also determine
whether the present currency laws are to be maintained, or whether
they shall undergo such alterations as shall prevent them from
aggravating the pressure in circumstances of unforeseen difficulty.
On all these points Sir Robert Peel stands strongly and unfortunately
committed. Even since he has been in opposition, he has shown no
symptoms of the slightest relaxation of his last adopted ideas; and
it is quite impossible for us to forget that, through his influence,
the Whigs were enabled to carry that bill which is universally
acknowledged to be the death-warrant of our West Indian colonies.
Under these circumstances, the devotion of his few adherents is not
only an act of Quixotry, but a serious injury to the party which has
a right to expect their services and their aid; and, however much we
may respect the talents of the gentlemen to whom we have alluded, we
must tell them that the period for a definite selection has arrived,
and that, by standing in the way of Conservative reconciliation and
union, they are not performing their proper duty either to their
country or their Queen.

With such financiers as Goulburn and Herries in the Commons,--with
such eminent statesmen as Lords Stanley, Lyndhurst, and Aberdeen in
the House of Peers,--there can be no doubt of the strength and the
success of the Conservative party if once more thoroughly united.
We have always regarded the unfortunate division as one of the most
serious disasters that ever befell the country, not only because it
destroyed the cohesion and severed the councils of a body which,
under any circumstances, would have been strong enough to keep both
the Whigs and the Radicals in check, but also because it engendered
much apathy and some disgust amongst men who were the most valuable
supporters of Conservative principles, and who, in consequence,
ceased for a time to take any active interest in public affairs. The
unseemly election contests which repeatedly took place in England,
between parties mutually designating themselves Protectionists and
Peelites,--sometimes terminating in the defeat of both, or in the
triumph, through their idle rivalry, of a liberal candidate, who
otherwise never could have succeeded--did a great deal to widen the
breach, and to lessen the mass of the opposition; and we revert with
considerable pride and satisfaction to the fact, that in Scotland no
such unnatural dissension was exhibited, but that men belonging to
every shade of Conservatism were eager to act in concert, whenever a
candidate appeared. We can make allowance for some exasperation on
both sides, under such very peculiar and novel circumstances; but we
hope that we have seen the last of these discreditable and weakening
contests.

Let, then, the short period which is left between the present time
and the reassembling of Parliament be employed by all the friends
of the old Conservative cause for the promotion of union, and the
establishment of a thoroughly good understanding amongst ourselves.
Let all former causes of offence be cordially forgiven: let us
consider what we are to do, and whom we are to follow; and, these
dispositions made, let them be adhered to with integrity and honour.
The Whig faction is utterly effete and incapable of maintaining
its ground. The free-traders stand before the nation as detected
charlatans and impostors. There is no enemy to fear, if we only go
on boldly and do our duty. But if we hesitate and hang back at the
present crisis, and decline to assume a position which might soon
enable us to apply an effectual remedy to the most pressing disorders
of the country, can we be surprised if the masses, irritated and
provoked, seeing no one great party in the state ready to come to
their assistance, should begin to clamour for organic changes; or if
the colonies, weary of their suffering, and despairing of sympathy,
should question the worth of the bonds which bind them to the mother
country?

Thus far we have thought it our duty to speak in all sincerity and
plainness. We know well that these sentiments are far from being
confined to ourselves. We feel assured that many of the wisest and
best men who ever adorned her Majesty's councils, or those of her
royal predecessors, are deeply desirous that the present anomalous
state of party should be corrected, and unwholesome separation be
superseded by cordial union. This, we firmly believe, could be
effected without any sacrifice of principle, and the sooner it is
accomplished the better.

There is but one topic more to which we would fain allude before
concluding the present article. The late rebellious outbreaks in
Ireland seem, in certain quarters, to have revived the notion of the
expediency of a state endowment of the Roman Catholic priesthood.
We place very little faith in the sincerity of an announcement
which some time ago was put forth, on hierarchical authority, in
the public prints, to the effect that, even were such an endowment
to be offered, it would be peremptorily and indignantly refused.
But, sincere or not, that statement may serve as an answer to the
writer in the last Number of the _Quarterly Review_, who supports
the endowment scheme with an unction which we were certainly not
prepared to expect. His argument, from first to last, implies the
same unhappy yielding to agitation and terrorism, which, when applied
to civil matters, has ended in open rebellion, and which, if applied
to ecclesiastical affairs, would infallibly result in the total
overthrow and annihilation of the Protestant Church in Ireland. Does
he really believe that--to assume no argument of a graver nature--the
people of Great Britain will be ready, in the present desperate state
of their finances, to submit to additional taxation for the purpose
of establishing, in permanent comfort, the true instigators of the
disturbances which have caused us so much anxiety and pain? Why, if
such endowment can be vindicated upon any intelligible principle, is
it to be confined to the Roman Catholic clergy of Ireland alone, and
not extended to the dissenting denominations throughout the width
and breadth of the land? On what plea could the Free and Episcopal
churches in Scotland, or the Wesleyan Methodists of England, be
excluded, if such a proposition were for a moment to be seriously
maintained? The reviewer professes to reject, _in toto_, any idea
of the confiscation of existing church property, and therefore he
must fall back, as his sole resource, upon government endowment,
which means simply a new tax on the people of Great Britain, for the
benefit of Ireland--a country which is already exempted from her
share of our heaviest burdens, and annually receiving eleemosynary
aid to an amount which has grievously contributed to increase our
late monetary pressure. It may be that some such project is in
contemplation, for we never have been able to comprehend, without
some such motive as this, the extraordinary anxiety exhibited by
the present Whig government in carrying through their bill for
the establishment of Diplomatic relations with Rome, at the very
moment when the last fragment of temporal power was passing from the
hands of the Pope. But whether this be so or not--whether this is a
mere private crotchet, or a prepared scheme, to come forth in due
season--we are perfectly satisfied that it will be met throughout
the country with a righteous storm of indignation. The Protestantism
of Britain has been its strength and its glory; and it was only when
called upon to choose between that sacred principle and the hardly
less revered one of loyalty, that our forefathers thought themselves
justified in summoning an alien to the British throne. What cost us
then both tears and blood is an operating principle now; and if,
through the grace of God, we have seen order maintained and rebellion
crushed at home, at a period when half of Europe is plunged in the
horrors of anarchy, we do not fear the charge of bigotry, if we
attribute our preservation as much to the religious establishments
of the land, as to the free institutions which Protestantism has
enabled us to maintain. Loyalty is not a thing to be bought: it is a
spontaneous feeling, unpurchaseable at any price; and if the Irish
Catholic clergy have it not now, the most liberal endowment will work
no change in their political feelings.

One of the arguments most commonly urged by those who advocate this
system of endowment, is, we think, both erroneous in its assumption
and weak in its application. They maintain that the Catholic clergy,
if in the pay of the state, would have less power over the peasantry
of Ireland than at present. Is that altogether a state of matters
which it would be desirable to bring about? Would it be well to sap
the influence of this moral police? There is not a Roman Catholic
priest in Ireland at this moment who does not know, that were he to
give open countenance to rebellion, he would not only be amenable
to the laws of his country, but, under a firm executive government,
would be selected as the earliest example. The situation of Ireland
is such, that we can never calculate upon the loyalty of a large
portion of its population. Centuries have rolled by, and still
the Celtic race persist in being aliens from our own. We cannot
tame them, cannot cultivate them, cannot win their hearts by any
imaginable sacrifice. They persist in their cry of Ireland for
the Irish, and will not see that the thing is as impossible as the
re-establishment of the Saxon heptarchy, and, were it possible,
would be tantamount to delivering them over to the horrors of a
barbarian war. It is no use disguising the fact--we must deal with
men as they are; and who can doubt that there does exist a great
amount of rooted disaffection among the peasantry of Ireland? And
now it is seriously proposed to cure that disaffection, by taking
means calculated to weaken the influence of the priesthood over the
peasantry! In other words, to give up the only hostages we hold, and
leave the most turbulent and uneducated population of Europe, freed
even from religious control, to be worked up to frenzy by the first
lay demagogue who has the art to make them believe that treason is a
synonymous term with patriotism. Even worldly wisdom would repudiate
such a surrender, and the argument is so weak, that it bears with it
its own refutation.

We have gained nothing whatever by tampering with Roman Catholicism
in Ireland. Neither the moral nor the social condition of the people
has been improved thereby; on the contrary, each successive step
towards conciliation has been met by augmented turbulence. We cannot
afford to push the experiment farther; and surely it would be a
strange thing, if, while the Romish clergy themselves distinctly
repudiate such an arrangement, and refuse to become the stipendiaries
of the British government, any body of men who may be called to the
responsible situation of her Majesty's advisers, should persist in
tendering the obnoxious and repugnant boon: least of all do we expect
that any such proposal can emanate from the Conservatives. We know
that upon this point various opinions have been expressed, and that
Lord George Bentinck was at one time supposed to be not unfavourable
to such a scheme. No man, we firmly believe, ever had the good of
Ireland more thoroughly at heart; and, had his plan for ameliorating
the Irish distress been adopted last year, and the money which was
uselessly squandered, been applied to the construction of permanent
works eminently calculated to open up and develop the resources of
the country, we might ere this time have seen the foundation laid of
a new era of social and industrial prosperity. But the Whig Cabinet,
perverse to the last, could not bring themselves to acknowledge that
the political sagacity of an opponent was greater than their own;
and, therefore the money which we gave with so lavish a hand, has
disappeared without leaving the smallest trace of its employment.
But, in ecclesiastical matters, Lord George Bentinck professed a
latitudinarianism which was not responded to by the great bulk of his
party. They were not disposed to unchristianise the high assembly of
Britain by the introduction of men who openly avowed their denial
of the faith of the Saviour; nor would they consent to put forth
their hands against the ark of the national churches. And therefore
it was that, upon more than one occasion, the Protestant party,
while cheerfully acknowledging the great public services of the late
departed nobleman, did not attempt to conceal that, upon points so
serious as these, there could be no sympathy of opinion between him
and them.

The single arrow may be easily splintered, but, to use the memorable
words of Genghis-Khan, "So long as the sheaf is bound together in
three places--in love, honesty, and good accord--no man can have
power to grieve us; but, if we be divided from these three places,
that one of us help not the other, we shall be destroyed and brought
to nothing." We recommend the moral contained in the apologue of the
old Asiatic chief to the serious consideration of all men belonging
to the Conservative party; for this they may rely upon, that, not
only is prolonged discord an act of egregious folly, but that any one
who refuses, in the present troublous times, to lend a hand to the
reknitting of the severed tie, cannot, in the estimation of good men,
be considered a friend to his country. And if this be so, what faith
can we repose in him who cut the cords asunder?


_Printed by William Blackwood and Sons, Edinburgh._


       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's Notes:

Obvious typographical errors were repaired, but valid archaic
spellings were retained.

Hyphenation variants have been standardized.

P. 570, "summons to a sick funnel": original read "sick funuel."

P. 612, "and looking on the vigorous and growing": original showed
"oking" with extra space before it.





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