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Title: Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 65, No. 399, January-June 1849
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.

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       *       *       *       *       *



  BLACKWOOD'S

  EDINBURGH MAGAZINE.



PRINTED BY WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS, EDINBURGH.



  BLACKWOOD'S

  Edinburgh

  MAGAZINE.

  VOL. LXV.

  JANUARY--JUNE, 1849.

  [Illustration: Buchanan]

  WILLIAM BLACKWOOD & SONS, EDINBURGH;

  AND

  37, PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON.

  1849.



  BLACKWOOD'S

  EDINBURGH MAGAZINE.

  NO. CCCXCIX.      JANUARY, 1849.      VOL. LXV.



CONTENTS.


  THE YEAR OF REVOLUTIONS,                    1

  FRENCH CONQUERORS AND COLONISTS,           20

  THE CAXTONS. PART IX.,                     33

  THE WHITE NILE,                            47

  ART AND ARTISTS IN SPAIN,                  63

  THE DODO AND ITS KINDRED,                  81

  THE SWORD OF HONOUR: A TALE OF 1787,       98

  MEMOIRS OF KIRKALDY OF GRANGE,            112


  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. CCCXCIX.        JANUARY, 1849.           VOL. LXV.



THE YEAR OF REVOLUTIONS.


"No great state," says Hannibal, "can long remain quiet: if it
ceases to have enemies abroad, it will find them at home--as
powerful bodies resist all external attacks, but are wasted away
by their own internal strength."[1] What a commentary on the
words of the Carthaginian hero does the last year--THE YEAR OF
REVOLUTIONS,--afford! What enthusiasm has it witnessed, what
efforts engendered, what illusions dispelled, what misery produced!
How bitterly have nations, as well as individuals, within its
short bounds, learned wisdom by suffering--how many lessons has
experience taught--how much agony has wickedness brought in its
train. Among the foremost in all the periods of history, this
memorable year will ever stand forth, a subject of undying interest
to succeeding generations, a lasting beacon to mankind amidst the
folly or insanity of future times. To it the young and the ardent
will for ever turn, for the most singular scenes of social strife,
the most thrilling incidents of private suffering: to it the aged
will point as the most striking warning of the desperate effects of
general delusion, the most unanswerable demonstration of the moral
government of the world.

  [1] "Nulla magna civitas diu quiescere potest si foris hostem non
  habet, _domi invenit_--ut prævalida corpora ab extremis causis tuta
  videntur, sed suis ipsa viribas onerantur. Tantum, nimirum, ex
  publicis malis sentimus, quantum ad res privatas pertmet; nec in eis
  quicquam aerius, quam pecuniæ damnun, stimulat."--LIVY, xxx. 44.

That God will visit the sins of the fathers upon the children was
proclaimed to the Israelites amidst the thunders of Mount Sinai,
and has been felt by every succeeding generation of men. But
it is not now upon the third or the fourth generation that the
punishment of transgression falls--it is felt in its full bitterness
by the transgressors themselves. The extension of knowledge, the
diffusion of education, the art of printing, the increased rapidity
of travelling, the long duration of peace in consequence of the
exhaustion of former wars, have so accelerated the march of events,
that what was slowly effected in former times, daring several
successive generations, by the gradual development of national
passions, is now at once brought to maturity by the fervent spirit
which is generally awakened, and the vehement passions which are
everywhere brought into action.

Everything now goes on at the gallop. There is a railway speed in
the stirring of the mind, not less than in the movement of the
bodies of men. The social and political passions have acquired
such intensity, and been so widely diffused, that their inevitable
results are almost immediately produced. The period of seed-time and
harvest has become as short in political as it is in agricultural
labour. A single year brings its appropriate fruits to maturity in
the moral as in the physical world. Eighty years elapsed in Rome
from the time when the political passions were first stirred by
Tiberius Gracchus, before its unruly citizens were finally subdued
by the art, or decimated by the cruelty of Octavius. England
underwent six years of civil war and suffering, before the ambition
and madness of the Long Parliament were expelled by the purge of
Pride, or crushed by the sword of Cromwell: twelve years elapsed
between the convocation of the States-general in 1789, and the
extinction of the license of the French Revolution by the arm of
Napoleon. But, on this occasion, in one year, all, in the meantime
at least, has been accomplished. Ere the leaves, which unfolded
in spring amidst the overthrow of thrones, and the transports of
revolutionists over the world, had fallen in autumn, the passions
which had convulsed mankind were crushed for the time, and the
triumphs of democracy were arrested. A terrible reaction had set in;
experience of suffering had done its work; and swift as the shades
of night before the rays of the ascending sun, had disappeared
the ferment of revolution before the aroused indignation of the
uncorrupted part of mankind. The same passions may again arise; the
same delusions again spread, as sin springs up afresh in successive
generations of men; but we know the result. They will, like the ways
of the unrighteous, be again crushed.

So rapid was the succession of revolutions, when the tempest
assailed the world last spring, that no human power seemed capable
of arresting it; and the thoughtful looked on in mournful and
impotent silence, as they would have done on the decay of nature
or the ruin of the world. The Pope began the career of innovation:
decrees of change issued from the Vatican; and men beheld with
amazement the prodigy of the Supreme Pontiff--the head of the
unchangeable Church--standing forth as the leader of political
reform. Naples quickly caught the flame: a Sicilian revolution
threatened to sever one-half of their dominions from the Neapolitan
Bourbon; and internal revolt seemed to render his authority merely
nominal in his own metropolis. Paris, the cradle in every age of
new ideas, and the centre of revolutionary action, next felt the
shock: a reform banquet was prepared as the signal for assembling
the democratic forces; the national guard, as usual, failed at the
decisive moment: the King of the Barricades quailed before the
power which had created him; the Orleans dynasty was overthrown,
and France delivered over to the dreams of the Socialists and the
ferocity of the Red Republicans. Prussia soon shared the madness:
the population of Berlin, all trained to arms, according to the
custom of that country, rose against the government; the king had
not energy enough to permit his faithful troops to act with the
vigour requisite to uphold the throne against such assailants, and
the monarchy of Frederick the Great was overthrown. Austria, even,
could not withstand the contagion: neither its proud nobility, nor
its light-hearted sensual people, nor its colossal army, nor its
centuries of glory, could maintain the throne in its moment of
peril. The Emperor was weak, the citizens of Vienna were infatuated;
and an insurrection, headed by the boys at the university and the
haberdashers' apprentices in the streets, overturned the imperial
government, and drove the Emperor to seek refuge in the Tyrol. All
Germany caught the flame: the dreams of a few hot-headed enthusiasts
and professors seemed to prevail alike over the dictates of wisdom
and the lessons of experience; and, amidst the transports of
millions the chimera or German unity seemed about to be realised by
the sacrifice of all its means of independence. The balance of power
in Europe appeared irrevocably destroyed by the breaking up of its
central and most important powers,--and England, in the midst of the
general ruin, seemed rocking to its foundation. The Chartists were
in raptures, the Irish rebels in ecstasy: threatening meetings were
held in every town in Great Britain; armed clubs were organised in
the whole south and west of Ireland; revolution was openly talked of
in both islands, and the close of harvest announced as the time when
the British empire was to be broken up, and Anglian and Hibernian
republics established, in close alliance with the great parent
democracy in France. Amidst such extraordinary and unprecedented
convulsions, it was with difficulty that a few courageous or
far-seeing minds preserved their equilibrium; and even those who
were least disposed to despair of the fortunes of the species, could
see no end to the succession of disasters with which the world
was menaced but in a great exertion of the renovating powers of
nature, similar to that predicted, in a similar catastrophe, for the
material world, by the imagination of the poet.

    "Roll on, ye stars! exult in youthful prime,
     Mark with bright curves the printless steps of Time!
     Near and more near your beaming cars approach,
     And lessening orbs on lessening orbs encroach.
     Flowers of the sky! ye, too, to Fate must yield,
     Frail as your silken sisters of the field;
     Star after star, from heaven's high arch shall rush,
     Suns sink on suns, and systems systems crush;
     Headlong, extinct, to one dark centre fall,
     And Dark, and Night, and Chaos, mingle all;
     Till, o'er the wreck, emerging from the storm,
     Immortal Nature lifts her changeful form,
     Mounts from her funeral pyre on wings of flame,
     And soars and shines, another and the same."[2]

  [2] DARWIN, _Botanic Garden_.

But the destiny of man, not less than that of the material world,
is balanced action and reaction, not restoration from ruin. Order
is preserved in a way which the imagination of the poet could
not have conceived. Even in the brief space which has elapsed
since the convulsions began in Italy in January last, the reality
and ceaseless action of the preserving laws of nature have been
demonstrated. The balance is preserved in social life by contending
passions and interests, as in the physical world by opposite
forces, under circumstances when, to all human appearance, remedy
is impossible and hope extinguished. The orbit of nations is traced
out by the Wisdom of Providence not less clearly than that of the
planets; there are centripetal and centrifugal forces in the moral
as well as in the material world. As much as the vehement passions,
the selfish desires, the inexperienced zeal, the expanding energy,
the rapacious indigence, the mingled virtues and vices of man, lead
at stated periods to the explosions of revolution,--do the desire
of tranquillity, the interests of property, the horror at cruelty,
the lessons of experience, the force of religion, the bitterness of
suffering, reinduce the desire of order, and restore the influence
of its organ, government. If we contemplate the awful force of the
expansive powers which, issuing from the great mass of central heat,
find vent in the fiery channels of the volcano, and have so often
rent asunder the solid crust of the earth, we may well tremble to
think that we stand suspended, as it were, over such an abyss,
and that at no great distance beneath our feet the elements of
universal conflagration are to be found.[3] But, strong as are the
expansive powers of nature, the coercive are still stronger. The
ocean exists to bridle with its weight the fiery gulf; the arch of
the earth has been solidly constructed by its Divine architect; and
the only traces we now discover, in most parts of this globe, of
the yet raging war of the elements, are the twisted strata, which
mark, as it were, the former writhings of matter in the terrible
grasp of its tormentors, or the splintered pinnacles of mountains,
which add beauty to the landscape, or the smiling plains, which
bring happiness to the abodes of man. It is the same in the moral
world. Action and reaction are the law of mind as well as matter,
and the equilibrium of social life is preserved by the opposite
tendency of the interests which are brought into collision, and
the counter-acting force of the passions which are successively
awakened by the very convulsions which seem to menace society with
dissolution.

  [3] "Thirty-five miles below the surface of the earth, the central
  heat is everywhere so great, that granite itself is held in
  fusion."--HUMBOLDT, _Cosmos_, i. 273.

A year has not elapsed since the revolutionary earthquake began to
heave in Italy, since the volcano burst forth in Paris; and how
marvellous is the change which already has taken place in the state
of Europe! The star of Austria, at first defeated, and apparently
about to be extinguished in Italy, is again in the ascendant.
Refluent from the Mincio to the Ticino, her armies have again
entered Milan,--the revolutionary usurpation of Charles Emanuel has
been checked almost as soon as it commenced; and the revolutionary
rabble of Lombardy and Tuscany has fled, as it was wont, before
the bayonets of Germany. Radetzky has extinguished revolution in
northern Italy. If it still lingers in the south of the peninsula,
it is only because the strange and tortuous policy of France and
England has interfered to arrest the victorious arms of Naples
on the Sicilian shores. Paris has been the theatre of a dreadful
struggle, blood has flowed in torrents in its streets, slaughter
unheard-of stained its pavements, but order has in the end prevailed
over anarchy. A dynasty has been subverted, but the Red Republicans
have been defeated, more generals have perished in a conflict of
three days than at Waterloo; but the Faubourg St Antoine has been
subdued, the socialists have been overthrown, the state of siege
has been proclaimed; and, amidst universal suffering, anguish, and
woe, with three hundred thousand persons out of employment in Paris,
and a deficit of £20,000,000 in the income of the year, the dreams
of equality have disappeared in the reality of military despotism.
It is immaterial whether the head of the government is called a
president, a dictator, or an emperor--whether the civic crown is
worn by a Napoleon or a Cavaignac--in either case the ascendant of
the army is established, and France, after a brief struggle for a
constitutional monarchy, has terminated, like ancient Rome, in an
elective military despotism.

Frankfort has been disgraced by frightful atrocities. The chief seat
of German unity and freedom has been stained by cruelties which
find a parallel only in the inhuman usages of the American savages;
but the terrible lesson has not been read in vain. It produced a
reaction over the world; it opened the eyes of men to the real
tendency and abominable iniquity of the votaries of revolution in
Germany; and to the sufferings of the martyrs of revolutionary
tortures on the banks of the Maine, the subsequent overthrow of
anarchy in Vienna and Berlin is in a great degree to be ascribed.
They roused the vacillating cabinets of Austria and Prussia--they
sharpened the swords of Windischgratz and Jellachich--they nerved
the souls and strengthened the arms of Brandenberg and Wrangel--they
awakened anew the chord of honour and loyalty in the Fatherland.
The national airs have been again heard in Berlin; Vienna has been
regained after a desperate conflict; the state of siege has been
proclaimed in both capitals; and order re-established in both
monarchies, amidst an amount of private suffering and general
misery--the necessary result of revolutions--which absolutely
sickens the heart to contemplate. England has emerged comparatively
unscathed from the strife; her time-honoured institutions have
been preserved, her monarchy saved amidst the crash of nations.
Queen Victoria is still upon the throne; our mixed constitution
is intact; the dreams of the Chartists have been dispelled; the
rebellion of the Irish rendered ridiculous; the loyalty of the
great body of the people in Great Britain made manifest. The period
of immediate danger is over; for the attack of the populace is
like the spring of a wild beast--if the first onset fails, the
savage animal slinks away into its den. General suffering indeed
prevails, industry languishes, credit is all but destroyed, a woful
deficiency of exports has taken place--but that is the inevitable
result of popular commotions; and we are suffering, in part at
least, under the effects of the insanity of nations less free and
more inexperienced than ourselves. Though last, not least in the
political lessons of this marvellous year, the papal government
has been subverted--a second Rienzi has appeared in Rome; and the
Supreme Pontiff, _who began the movement_, now a fugitive from his
dominions, has exhibited a memorable warning to future ages, of the
peril of commencing reforms in high places, and the impossibility
of reconciling the Roman Catholic religion with political
innovation.

But let it not be imagined that, because the immediate danger is
over, and because military power has, after a fierce struggle,
prevailed in the principal capitals of Europe, that therefore the
ultimate peril is past, and that men have only to sit down, under
the shadow of their fig-tree, to cultivate the arts and enjoy the
blessings of peace. Such is not the destiny of man in any, least of
all in a revolutionary age. We are rather on the verge of an era
similar to that deplored by the poet:--

    "Bella per Emathios plusquam civilia campos,
     Jusque datum sceleri canimus, populumque potentem
     In sua victrici conversum viscera dextrâ;
     Cognatasque acies; et rupto f[oe]dera regni
     Certatum totis concussi viribus orbis,
     In commune nefas."[4]

  [4] LUCAN, i. 1-6.

Who can tell the immeasurable extent of misery and wretchedness,
of destruction of property among the rich, and ruin of industry
among the poor, that must take place before the fierce passions,
now so generally awakened, are allayed--before the visions of a
virtuous republic by Lamartine, or the dreams of communism by
Louis Blanc and Ledru-Rollin, or the insane ideas of the Frankfort
enthusiasts have ceased to move mankind? The fire they have let
loose will burn fiercely for centuries; it will alter the destiny
of nations for ages; it will neither be quenched, like ordinary
flames, by water, nor subdued, like the Greek fire, by vinegar:
blood alone will extinguish its fury. The coming convulsions may
well be prefigured from the past, as they have been recently drawn
by the hand of a master:--"All around us, the world is convulsed
by the agonies of great nations; governments which lately seemed
likely to stand during ages, have been on a sudden shaken and
overthrown. The proudest capitals of western Europe have streamed
with civil blood. All evil passions--the thirst of gain and the
thirst of vengeance--the antipathy of class to class, of race to
race--have broken loose from the control of divine and human laws.
Fear and anxiety have clouded the faces, and depressed the hearts
of millions; trade has been suspended, and industry paralysed;
the rich have become poor, and the poor poorer. Doctrines hostile
to all sciences, to all arts, to all industry, to all domestic
charity--doctrines which, if carried into effect, would in thirty
years undo all that thirty centuries have done for mankind, and
would make the fairest provinces of France or Germany as savage
as Guiana or Patagonia--have been avowed from the tribune, and
defended by the sword. Europe has been threatened with subjugation
by barbarians, compared with whom the barbarians who marched under
Attila or Alboin were enlightened and humane. The truest friends of
the people have with deep sorrow owned, that interests more precious
than any political privileges were in jeopardy, and that it might be
necessary to sacrifice even liberty to save civilisation."[5]

  [5] MACAULAY's _History of England_, vol. ii. p. 669.

It is now just a year since Mr Cobden announced, to an admiring
and believing audience at Manchester, that the age of warfare
had ceased; that the contests of nations had passed, like the
age of the mastodon and the mammoth; that the steam-engine had
caused the arms to drop from her hands, and the interests of free
trade extinguished the rivalries of nations; and that nothing now
remained but to sell our ships of war, disband our troops, cut
twenty millions off our taxation, and set ourselves unanimously to
the great work of cheapening everything, and underselling foreign
competitors in the market of the world. Scarcely were the words
spoken, when conflicts more dire, battles more bloody, dissensions
more inextinguishable than had ever arisen from the rivalry of
kings, or the ambition of ministers, broke out in almost every
country of Europe. The social supplanted the national passions.
Within the bosom of society itself, the volcano had burst forth. It
was no longer general that was matched against general, as in the
wars of Marlborough, nor nation that rose up against nation, as in
those of Napoleon. The desire of robbery, the love of dominion, the
lust of conquest, the passion for plunder, were directed to domestic
acquisitions. Human iniquity reappeared in worse, because less
suspected and more delusive colours. Robbery assumed the guise of
philanthropy; spoliation was attempted, under colour of law; plunder
was systematically set about, by means of legislative enactments.
Revolution resumed its old policy--that of rousing the passions by
the language of virtue, and directing them to the purposes of vice.
The original devil was expelled; but straightway he returned with
seven other devils, and the last state of the man was worse than the
first. Society was armed against itself; the devastating passions
burned in its own bosom; class rose against class, race against
race, interest against interest. Capital fancied its interest was
to be promoted by grinding down labour; labour, that its rights
extended to the spoliation of capital. A more attractive object
than the reduction of a city, or the conquest of a province, was
presented to indigent cupidity. Easier conquests than over rival
industry were anticipated by moneyed selfishness. The spoliation of
the rich at their own door--the division of the property of which
they were jealous, became the dream of popular ambition; the beating
down of their own labourers by free-trade, the forcible reduction
of prices by a contraction of the currency--the great object of the
commercial aristocracy. War reassumed its pristine ferocity. In the
nineteenth century, the ruthless maxim--_Væ victis!_ became the
war-cry on both sides in the terrible civil war which burst forth in
an age of general philanthropy. It may be conceived what passions
must have been awakened, what terrors inspired, what indignation
aroused by such projects. But though we have seen the commencement
of the _era of social conflicts_, is there any man now alive who is
likely to see its end?

Experience has now completely demonstrated the wisdom of the Allied
powers, who placed the lawful monarchs of France on the throne in
1815, and the enormous error of the liberal party in France, which
conspired with the republicans to overthrow the Bourbon dynasty in
1830. That fatal step has bequeathed a host of evils to Europe: it
has loosened the authority of government in all countries; it has
put the very existence of freedom in peril by the enormity of the
calamities which it has brought in its train. All parties in France
are now agreed that the period of the Restoration was the happiest,
and the least corrupted, that has been known since the first
Revolution. The republicans of the present day tell us, with a sigh,
that the average budgets of the three last years of Charles X. were
900,000,000 francs, (£36,000,000;) that the expenditure was raised
by Louis Philippe at once to 1500,000,000 francs, (£60,000,000;)
and that under the Republic it will exceed 1800,000,000 francs,
(£72,000,000.) There can be no doubt of the fact; and there can
be as little, that if the Red Republicans had succeeded in the
insurrection of June last, the annual expenditure would have
increased to £100,000,000--or rather, a universal spoliation of
property would have ensued. Louis Blanc has given the world, in
his powerful historical work, a graphic picture of the universal
corruption, selfishness, and immorality, in public and private
life, which pervaded France during the reign of Louis Philippe.[6]
Though drawn by the hand of a partisan, there can be no doubt that
the picture is too faithful in most of its details, and exhibits
an awful proof of the effects of a successful revolution. But the
misery which Louis Blanc has so ably depicted, the corruptions he
has brought to light, under the revolutionary monarchy, have been
multiplied fourfold by those which have prevailed during the last
year in the republic established by Louis Blanc, himself!

  [6] LOUIS BLANC, _Histoire de Dix Ans de Louis Philippe_, iii. 321,
  _et seq._

Paris, ever since the suppression of the great insurrection in
June last, has been in such a state, that it is the most utter
mockery to call it freedom. In truth, it is nothing but the most
unmitigated military despotism. A huge statue of liberty is placed
in the National Assembly; but at every six paces bayonets are to be
seen, to remind the bystanders of the rule of the sword. "Liberté,
Egalité, Fraternité," meet the eye at every turn in the streets; but
the Champs Elysées, the Place de Grève, the Carrousel, and Place
Vendôme, are crowded with soldiers; and the Champ de Mars is white
with tents, to cover part of the 40,000 regular troops which form
the ordinary garrison of Paris. Universal freedom of discussion has
been proclaimed by the constitution; but dozens of journals have
been suppressed by the authority of the dictator; and imprisonment
notoriously hangs over the head of every one who indulges in the
freedom of discussion, which in England and America is universal.
The state of siege has been raised, after having continued four
months; but the military preparations for _another siege_ continue
with unabated vigour on both sides. The constitution has been
adopted by a great majority in the Assembly; but the forts are all
armed, and prepared to rain down the tempest of death on the devoted
city. Universal suffrage is established; but menacing crowds are in
the streets, threatening any one who votes against their favourite
candidates. The Faubourg St Antoine, during the late election, was
in a frightful state of agitation; infantry, cavalry, and artillery,
were traversing the streets in all directions; and conflicts not
less bloody than those of June last were anticipated in the struggle
for the presidency, and prevented only by the presence of _ninety
thousand soldiers_ in the capital: a force greater than that
which fought on either side at Austerlitz or Jena. It is evident
that republican institutions, in such a state of society, are a
mere name; and that supreme despotic power is really invested in
France, as in ancient Rome under the emperors, in the nominee of a
victorious body of soldiery. The Prætorian guards will dispose of
the French as they did of the Roman diadem; and ere long, gratuities
to the troops will perhaps be the passport to power in Paris, as
they were in the Eternal City.

Nor have the social evils, which in France have followed in the
wake of successful revolution, been less deplorable than the entire
destruction of the rights of freemen and security of property which
has ensued. To show that this statement is not overcharged, we
extract from a noted liberal journal of Paris, _La Reforme_, of
November 17, 1848, the following statement:--

     "Property, manufactures, and commerce are utterly destroyed in
     Paris. Of the population of that great city, the capital of
     France, there are 300,000 individuals wanting the necessaries
     of life. One half at least of those earned from 3f. to 5f. a
     day previous to the revolution, and occupied a number of houses
     in the faubourgs. The proprietors of those houses receiving no
     rent, and having taxes and other charges to pay, are reduced
     to nearly as deep distress as their tenants. In the centre of
     Paris, the same distress exists under another form. The large
     and sumptuous apartments of the fashionable quarters were
     occupied before the revolution by wealthy proprietors, or by
     persons holding lucrative employments in the public offices,
     or by extensive manufacturers, but nearly all those have
     disappeared, and the few who remain have insisted upon such a
     reduction of rent that the proprietor does not receive one-half
     of the amount to which he is entitled. Should a proprietor of
     house property endeavour to raise a sum of money by a first
     mortgage, to defray his most urgent expenses, he finds it
     impossible to do so, even at a most exorbitant rate of interest.
     Those who possess ready money refuse to part with it, either
     through fear, or because they expect to purchase house property
     when it must be sold at 50 per cent less than the value."--_La
     Reforme_, November 17, 1848.

It is certainly a most remarkable thing, in the history of the
aberrations of the human mind, that a system of policy which has
produced, and is producing, such disastrous results--and, above
all, which is inflicting such deadly and irreparable wounds on
the interests of the poor, and the cause of freedom throughout
the world--should have been, during the last eighteen years, the
object of unceasing eulogy by the liberal party on both sides of the
Channel; and that the present disastrous state of affairs, both in
this country and on the Continent, is nothing more than the natural
and inevitable result of the principles that party has everywhere
laboured to establish. The revolution of 1830 was hailed with
enthusiasm in this country by the whole liberal party: the Irish are
not more enamoured now of the revolution of 1848, than the Whigs
were, eighteen years ago, of that of 1830. The liberal government
of England did all in their power to spread far and wide the
glorious example. Flanders was attacked--an English fleet and French
army besieged Antwerp; and, by a coalition of the two powers, a
revolutionary throne was established in Belgium, and the king of the
Netherlands prevented from re-establishing the kingdom guaranteed
to him by all the powers of Europe. The Quadruple Alliance was
formed to revolutionise Spain and Portugal; a sanguinary civil
war was nourished for long in both kingdoms; and at length, after
years of frightful warfare, the legitimate monarch, and legal order
of succession, were set aside in both countries; queens were put
on the thrones of both instead of kings, and England enjoyed the
satisfaction, for the diffusion of her revolutionary propagandism,
of destroying the securities provided for the liberties of Europe by
the treaty of Utrecht, and preparing a Spanish princess for the hand
of a Bourbon prince.

Not content with this memorable and politic step, and even after
the recent disasters of France were actually before their eyes, our
rulers were so enamoured of revolutions, that they could not refrain
from encouraging it in every _small_ state within their reach.
Lord Palmerston counseled the Pope, in a too celebrated letter, to
plunge into the career which has terminated so fatally for himself
and for Italy. Admiral Parker long prevented the Neapolitan force
from embarking for Sicily, to do there what Lord Hardinge was nearly
at the same time sent to do in Ireland. We beheld the Imperial
standards with complacency driven behind the Mincio; but no sooner
did Radetzky disperse the revolutionary army, and advance to Milan,
than British and French diplomacy interfered to arrest his march,
and save their revolutionary protégé, the King of Piedmont, from the
chastisement which his perfidious attack on Austria in the moment of
her distress merited. The Ministerial journals are never weary of
referring to the revolutions on the Continent as the cause of all
the distress which has prevailed in England, since they broke out
in last spring: they forget that it was England herself which first
unfurled the standard of revolution, and that, if we are suffering
under its effects, it is under the effects of our own measures and
policy.

Strange and unaccountable as this perverted and diseased state
of opinion, in a large part of the people of this country,
undoubtedly is, it is easily explained when the state of society,
and the channel into which political contests have run, are taken
into consideration. In truth, our present errors are the direct
consequence of our former wisdom; our present weakness, of our
former strength; our present misery, of our former prosperity.

In the feudal ages, and over the whole Asiatic world at the present
time, the contests of parties are carried on for _individuals_. No
change of national policy, or of the system of internal government,
is contemplated on either side. It is for one prince or another
prince, for one sultaun or another sultaun, that men draw their
swords. "Under which King, Bezonian?--speak or die!" is there
the watch-word of all civil conflict. It was the same in this
country during the feudal ages, and down to a very recent period.
No man in the civil wars between Stephen and Henry II., or of the
Plantagenet princes, or in the wars of the Roses, contemplated or
desired any change of government or policy in the conflict in which
they were engaged. The one party struck for the Red, the other for
the White Rose. Great civil and social interests were at issue in
the conflict; but the people cared little or nothing for these.
The contest between the Yorkists and the Lancastrians was a great
feud between two clans which divided the state; and the attachment
to their chiefs was the blind devotion of the Highlanders to the
Pretender.

The Reformation, which first brought the dearest objects of thought
and interest home to all classes, made a great change in this
respect, and substituted in large proportion general questions for
the adherence to particular men, or fidelity to particular families.
Still, however, the old and natural instinct of the human race to
attach themselves to men, not things, continued, in a great degree,
to influence the minds of the people, and as many buckled on their
armour for the man as the cause. The old Cavaliers, who periled
life and lands in defence of Charles I., were as much influenced
by attachment to the dignified monarch, who is immortalised in the
canvass of Vandyke, as by the feelings of hereditary loyalty; and
the iron bands which overthrew their ranks at Marston Moor, were as
devoted to Cromwell as the tenth legion to Cæsar, or the Old Guard
to Napoleon. In truth, such individual influences are so strongly
founded in human nature, that they will continue to the end of the
world, from whatever cause a contest may have arisen, as soon as
it has continued for a certain time, and will always stand forth
in prominent importance when a social has turned into a military
conflict, and the perils and animosities of war have endeared their
leaders to the soldiers on either side. The Vendeans soon became
devoted to Henri Larochjaquelein, the Republicans to Napoleon;
and in our own times, the great social conflict of the nineteenth
century has been determined by the fidelity of the Austrian
soldiers to Radetzky, of the French to Cavaignac, of the German to
Windischgratz.

But in the British empire, for a century past, it has been
thoroughly understood, by men of sense of all parties, that a change
of dynasty is out of the question, and that there is no reform worth
contending for in the state, which is not to be effected by the
means which the constitution itself has provided. This conviction,
long impressed upon the nation, and interwoven as it were with the
very framework of the British mind, having come to coincide with the
passions incident to party divisions in a free state, has in process
of time produced the strange and tortuous policy which, for above a
quarter of a century, has now been followed in this country by the
government, and lauded to the skies by the whole liberal party on
the Continent. Deprived of the watchwords of men, the parties have
come to assume those of things. Organic or social change have become
the war-cry of faction, instead of change of dynasty. The nation is
no longer drenched with blood by armies fighting for the Red or the
White Rose, by parties striving for the mastery between the Stuart
and Hanover families, but it was not less thoroughly divided by
the cry of "The bill, the whole bill, and nothing but the bill,"
at one time, and that of "Free-trade and cheap corn" at another.
Social change, alterations of policy, have thus come to be the great
objects which divide the nation; and, as it is ever the policy of
Opposition to represent the conduct of Government as erroneous,
it follows, as a necessary consequence, that the main efforts of
the party opposed to administration always have been, since the
suppression of the Rebellion in 1745, to effect, when in opposition,
a change in general opinion, and, when in power, to carry that
change into effect by a change of policy. The old law of nature
is still in operation. Action and reaction rule mankind; and in
the efforts of parties mutually to supplant each other in power, a
foundation is laid for an entire change of policy at stated periods,
and an alteration, as great as from night to day, in the opinions
and policy of the ruling party in the same state at different times.

The old policy of England--that policy under which, in the words
of Macaulay, "The authority of law and the security of property
were found to be compatible with a liberty of discussion and
of individual action never known before; under which form, the
auspicious union of order and freedom, sprang a prosperity of which
the annals of human affairs had furnished no example; under which
our country, from a state of ignominious vassalage, rapidly rose to
the place of umpire among European powers; under which her opulence
and martial glory grew together; under which, by wise and resolute
good faith, was gradually established a public credit, fruitful
of marvels which, to the statesmen of any former age, would have
appeared incredible; under which a gigantic commerce gave birth to
a maritime power, compared with which every other maritime power,
ancient or modern, sinks into insignificance; under which Scotland,
after ages of enmity, was at length united to England, not mere by
legal bonds, but by indissoluble ties of interest and affection;
under which, in America, the British colonies rapidly became far
mightier and wealthier than the realms which Cortes and Pizarro
added to the dominions of Charles V.; under which, in Asia, British
adventurers founded an empire not less splendid, and more durable,
than that of Alexander,"[7]--was not the policy of any particular
party or section of the community, and thence its long duration and
unexampled success.

  [7] MACAULAY's _History_, i. 1-2.

It was not introduced--it grew. Like the old constitution, of which
it was the emanation, it arose from the wants and necessities of
all classes of men during a long series of ages. It was first
proclaimed in energetic terms by the vigour of Cromwell; the cry of
the national representatives for markets to native industry, of the
merchants, for protection to their ships, produced the Navigation
Laws, and laid the foundation of the colonial empire of England.
Amidst all his _insouciance_ and folly in the drawing-room of the
Duchess of Portsmouth, and the boudoirs of the Duchess of Cleveland,
it was steadily pursued by Charles II. James II. did not lose sight
of this same system, amidst all his infatuation and cruelty; when
directing the campaign of Jeffreys in the west, he was as steadily
bent on upholding and extending the navy as when, amidst the
thunders of war, he combated de Ruyter and van Tromp on the coast
of Holland. William III., Anne, and the Georges, pursued the same
system. It directed the policy of Somers and Godolphin; it ruled the
diplomacy of Walpole and Chatham; it guided the measures of Bute
and North; it directed the genius of Pitt and Fox. It was for it
that Marlborough conquered, and Wolfe fell; that Blake combated, and
Hawke destroyed; that Nelson launched the thunderbolt of war, and
Wellington carried the British standard to Madrid and Paris.

It was the peculiar structure of the English constitution, during
this century and a half of prosperity and glory, that produced so
remarkable a uniformity in the objects of the national policy. These
objects were pursued alike by the Republicans and the Royalists; by
the Roundheads and the Cavaliers; by the Whigs, during the seventy
years of their rule that followed the Revolution, and the Tories,
during the sixty years that succeeded the accession of George III.
The policy was that of _protection to all the national interests,
whether landed, commercial, colonial, or manufacturing_. Under this
system they all grew and prospered, _alike and abreast_, in the
marvellous manner which the pencil of Macaulay has sketched in the
opening of his History. It was hard to say whether agriculture,
manufactures, colonies, or shipping throve and prospered most
during that unique period. The world had never seen anything like
it before: it is doubtful if it will ever see anything like it
again. Under its shelter, the various interests of the empire were
knit together in so close a manner, that they not only all grew
and prospered together, but it was universally felt that their
interests were entirely dependent on each other. The toast "The
plough, the loom, and the sail," was drunk with as much enthusiasm
in the farmers' club as in the merchant's saloon. As varied as the
interests with which they were charged, the policy of government was
yet perfectly steady in following out one principle--the protection
of the _productive classes_, whether by land or water, whether at
home or abroad.

The legislature represented and embodied all these interests, and
carried out this policy. It gave them a stability and consistency
which had never been seen in the world before. Nominally the
representatives of certain towns and counties in the British
islands, the House of Commons gradually became really the
representatives of the varied interests of the whole British empire.
The nomination boroughs afforded an inlet alike to native talent
and foreign interests. Gatton and Old Sarum, or similar close
boroughs, afforded an entrance to the legislature, not only to the
genius of Pitt and Fox, of Burke and Sheridan, but to the wealth
of Jamaica, the rising energy of Canada, the aged civilisation of
Hindostan. Experienced protection reconciled all interests to a
government under which all prospered; mutual dependence made all
sensible of the necessity of common unanimity. The statute-book
and national treaties, from the Revolution in 1688 to the close
of the war with Napoleon in 1815, exhibit the most decisive proof
of the working of these varied, but not conflicting interests, in
the national councils. If you contemplate the general protection
afforded to agriculture and the landed interest, you would imagine
the House of Commons had been entirely composed of squires. If you
examine the innumerable enactments, fiscal and prohibitory, for the
protection of manufactures, you would suppose it had been entirely
under the government of manufacturers. If you contemplate the steady
protection invariably given to the mercantile navy, you would
suppose it had been chiefly directed by shipowners. If you cast your
eyes on the protection constantly given by discriminating fiscal
duties to colonial industry, and the vast efforts made, both by sea
and land, in the field and in the cabinet, to encourage and extend
our colonial dependencies, you would conclude, not only that they
were represented, but that their representatives had a majority in
the legislature.

The reason of this prodigy was, that all interests had, in the
course of ages, and the silent effects of time, worked their
way into the legislature, and all enjoyed in fair proportion a
reasonable influence on government. Human wisdom could no more _ab
ante_ have framed such a system, than it could have framed the
British constitution. By accident, or rather the good providence
of God, it grew up from the wants of men during a series of
generations; and its effects appeared in this, that--except in the
cases of the American war, where unfortunate circumstances produced
a departure from the system; of the Irish Celts, whom it seems
impracticable to amalgamate with Saxon institutions; and of the
Scottish Highlanders, whom chivalrous honour for a short period
alienated from the established government--unanimity unprecedented
during the whole period pervaded the British empire. All foreign
colonies were desirous to be admitted into the great protecting
confederacy; the French and Dutch planters in secret prayed for
the defeat of their defenders when the standard of St George
approached their shores. The Hindoos, with heroic constancy, alike
in prosperous and adverse fortune, maintained their fidelity: Canada
stood firm during the most dangerous crisis of our history; and the
flame of loyalty burned as steadily on the banks of the St Lawrence,
on the mountains of Jamaica, and on the shores of the Ganges, as in
the crowded emporiums of London, or the smiling fields of Yorkshire.

But there is a limit imposed by nature to all earthly things.
The growth of empires is restrained, after they have reached a
certain stature, by laws as certain as those which arrest that of
individuals. If a state does not find the causes of its ruin in
foreign disaster, it will inevitably find it in internal opinion.
This arises so naturally and evidently from the constitution of the
human mind, that it may be regarded as a fixed law of nature in all
countries where intellectual activity has been called forth, and
as one of the most powerful agents in the government, by supreme
Wisdom, of human affairs. This principle is to be found in the
tendency of _original_ thought to differ from the current opinion
with which it is surrounded, and of party ambition to decry the
system of those by whom it is excluded from power.

Universally it will be found that the greatest exertions of human
intellect have been made in _direct opposition_ to the current of
general opinion; and that public thought in one age is in general
but the echo of solitary meditation in that which has preceded
it. Illustrations of this crowd on the reflecting mind from every
period of history. The instances of Luther standing forth alone to
shake down, Samson-like, the pillar of the corrupted Romish faith;
of Bacon's opening, amid all the despotism of the Aristotelian
philosophy, his inductive philosophy; of Galileo maintaining the
motion of the earth even when surrounded by the terrors of the
Italian Inquisition; of Copernicus asserting the true system of
the heavens in opposition to the belief of two thousand years;
of Malthus bringing forward the paradox of the danger of human
increase in opposition to the previous general opinion of mankind;
of Voltaire combating alone the giant power of the Roman Catholic
hierarchy; of Rousseau running a course against the whole ideas
of his age--will immediately occur to every reader. Many of these
great men adopted erroneous opinions, and, in consequence, did as
much evil to their own or the next age as others did good; but they
were all characterised by one mark. Their opinions were _original_,
and directly adverse to public opinion around them. The close of
the nineteenth century was no exception to the general principle.
Following out those doctrines of freedom from restraint of every
kind, which in France had arisen from the natural resistance of
men to the numerous fetters of the monarchy, and which had been
brought forward by Turgot and the Economists, in the boudoirs of
Madame Pompadour and the coteries of Paris,--Adam Smith broached the
principle of Free Trade, with the exceptions of grain and shipping.
The first he excepted, because it was essential to national
subsistence; the second, because it was the pillar of national
defence. The new philosophy was ardently embraced by the liberal
party, who, chagrined by long exclusion from office, were rejoiced
to find a tangible and plausible ground whereon to attack the whole
existing system of government. From them it gradually extended to
nearly all the ardent part of the community, ever eager to embrace
doctrines at variance with previous and vulgar belief, and not yet
enlightened by experience as to the effect of the new system. It was
soon discovered that for a century and a half we had been proceeding
on false principles. The whole policy of government since the days
of Cromwell had been erroneous; in politics, in social government,
in diplomacy, in the colonies, in war, in peace, at home and abroad,
we had been running blindfold to destruction. True, we had become
great, and glorious, and free under this abominable system; true, it
had been accompanied by a growth of national strength, and an amount
of national happiness, unparalleled in any former age or country;
but that was all by accident. Philosophy had marked it with the
sign of reprobation--prosperity had poured upon us by chance in the
midst of universal misgovernment. By all the rules of calculation
we should have been destroyed, though, strange to say, no symptoms
of destruction had yet appeared amongst us. According to every
principle of philosophy, the patient should long ago have been dead
of the mortal disease under which he laboured: the only provoking
thing was, that he was still walking about in robust and florid
health.

Circumstances occurred at the same time, early in this century,
which had the most powerful effect in exasperating the Opposition
party throughout the country, and inducing them to embrace,
universally and ardently, the new philosophy, which condemned in
such unmeasured terms the whole system of government pursued by
their antagonists. For half a century, since the long dominion of
the Whigs was terminated in 1761 by George III., the Tories had
been, with the exception of a few months, constantly in office.
Though their system of government in religion, in social affairs,
in foreign relations, was nothing but a continuation of that which
the Whigs had introduced, and according to which the government had
been conducted from 1688 to 1760, yet, in the ardour of their zeal
for the overthrow of their adversaries, the liberal party embraced
on every point the opposite side. The descendants of Lord Russel
became the advocates of Roman Catholic emancipation; the followers
of Marlborough and Godolphin, the partisans of submission to France;
the successors of Walpole and Chatham, the advocates of free trade
and colonial neglect. These feelings, embraced from the influence of
a determination to find fault with government in every particular,
were worked up to the highest pitch by the glorious result of the
war with France, and the apparently interminable lease of power
acquired by their adversaries from the overthrow of Napoleon. That
memorable event, so opposite to that which they had all so long
in public predicted, so entirely the reverse of that which many
had in secret wished, produced a profound impression on the Whig
party. Their feelings were only the more acute, that, amidst the
tumult of national exultation, they were forced to suppress them,
and to wear the countenance of satisfaction, when the bitterness of
disappointment was in their hearts. To the extreme asperity of these
feelings, and the universal twist which they gave to the minds of
the whole liberal party in Great Britain, the subsequent general
change in their political principles is to be ascribed; and, in the
practical application of these principles, the real cause of our
present distressed condition is to be found.

While one set of causes thus prepared, in the triumph of
Conservative and protective principles, the strongest possible
reaction against them, and prognosticated, at no distant period,
their general banishment from popular thought, another, and a
not less powerful set, flowing from the same cause, gave these
principles the means of acquiring a political supremacy, and ruling
the government of the state. The old policy of England, it has
been already observed, for a hundred and fifty years, had been to
take care of the producers, and let the consumers take care of
themselves. Such had been the effects of this protective policy,
that, before the close of the Revolutionary war, during which it
received its full development, the producing classes, both in town
and country, had become so rich and powerful, that it was easy
to see they would ere long give a preponderance to urban over
rural industry. The vast flood of agricultural riches poured for
expenditure into towns; that of the manufacturers and merchants
seldom left it. The great manufacturing and mercantile places,
during a century, had advanced in population tenfold, in wealth
thirty-fold. The result of this change was very curious, and in
the highest degree important. Under the _shadow of protection_ to
industry in all its branches, riches, both in town and country, had
increased so prodigiously, that the holders of it had _acquired
a preponderance over the classes in the state yet engaged in the
toilsome and hazardous work of production_. The owners of realised
capital had become so numerous and weighty, from the beneficial
effects of the protective system under which the country had so long
flourished, that they formed an important _class apart, which began
to look to its separate interests_. The consumers had become so
numerous and affluent, that they were enabled to bid defiance to the
producers. The maxim became prevalent, "Take care of the consumer,
and let the producer take care of himself." Thence the clamour for
free trade. Having passed the labour of production, during which
they, or their fathers, had strenuously supported the protective
principles, by which they were making their money, the next thing
was to support the opposite principles, by which the value of the
_made money might be augmented_. This was to be done by free trade
and a contracted currency. Having made millions by protection, the
object now was to add a half to every million by raising its value.
The way to do this seemed to be by cheapening the price of every
other article, and raising the price of money: in other words, the
system of cheapening everything without reference to its effect on
the interests of production.

Parliamentary reform, for which the Whigs, disappointed by long
exclusion from office, laboured strenuously, in conjunction with
the commercial and moneyed classes, enriched by protection, gave
them the means of carrying both objects into execution, because
it made two-thirds of the House of Commons the representatives of
burghs. The cry of cheap bread was seductive to all classes in
towns:--to the employer, because it opened the prospect of reducing
the price of labour, and to the operative, because it presents that
of lowering that of provisions. To these two objects, accordingly,
of raising the value of money and lowering the remuneration of
industry, the Reform parliament, the organ of the moneyed interest
and consuming classes, has, through all the changes of party, been
perfectly steady. It is no wonder it has been so, for it was the
first-born of those interests. Twenty years before the cry for
reform convulsed the nation--in 1810--the Bullion Committee brought
forward the principle of a metallic, and, consequently, a contracted
currency; and they recommended its adoption in the very crisis of
the war, when Wellington lay at Torres Vedras, and when the monetary
crisis to which it must have led would have made us a province of
France. Reform was the consequence of the change in the currency,
not its cause. The whole time from 1819 to 1831, with the exception
of 1824 and 1825, was one uninterrupted period of suffering. Such
was the misery it produced that the minds of men were prepared
for any change. A chaos of unanimity was produced by a chaos of
suffering.

Thus, by a singular and most interesting chain of causes and
effects, it was the triumph of Conservative and protective
principles in the latter years of the war, and the entire
demonstration thus afforded of their justice and expedience,
which was the immediate cause of their subsequent abandonment,
and all the misery which has thence arisen, and with which we
are still everywhere surrounded. For it at once turned all the
intellectual energies of the great liberal party to oppose, in
every particular, the system by which their opponents had been
glorified, and concentrated all the energies of the now powerful
moneyed classes to swell, by a change of policy, the fortunes on
which their consequence depended, and which had arisen from the
long prevalence of the opposite system. For such is the tendency to
action and reaction, in all vigorous and intellectual communities,
that truth itself is for long no security against their occurrence.
On the contrary, so vehement are the passions excited by a great
and lasting triumph of one party, even though in the right, that
the victory of truth, whether in politics or religion, is often
the immediate cause of the subsequent triumph of error. The great
Roman Catholic reaction against the Reformation, which Ranke has so
clearly elucidated, and Macaulay has so powerfully illustrated, has
its exact counterpart in the great political reaction of the Whig
party, of which Macaulay is himself the brightest ornament.

That this is the true explanation of the strange and tortuous
policy, both in domestic and foreign affairs, under which the
nation has so long suffered, is apparent on the slightest survey of
political affairs in the last and present century.

The old principle of the English constitution, which had worked
itself into existence, or grown up from the necessities of men,
during a long course of years, was, that the whole _interests_ of
the state should be represented, and that the House of Commons
was the assembly in which the representatives of all those varied
interests were to be found. For the admission of these varied
interests, a varied system of electoral qualifications, admitting
all interests, noble, mercantile, industrial, popular, landed, and
colonial, was indispensable. In the old House of Commons, all these
classes found a place for their representatives, and thence the
commercial protection it afforded to industry. According to the new
system, a vast majority of seats was to be allotted to _one class
only_, the householders and shopkeepers of towns. That class was the
moneyed and consuming class; and thence the whole subsequent course
of British policy, which has been to sacrifice everything to their
interests.

The old maxim of government, alike with Whigs and Tories, was, that
native industry of all sorts, and especially agricultural industry,
was to be protected, and that foreign competition was to be admitted
only in so far as was not inconsistent with this primary object.
The new philosophy taught, and the modern liberals carried into
execution, a different principle. They went on the maxim that the
interests of the consumers alone were to be considered: that to
cheapen everything was the great object; and that it mattered not
how severely the producers of articles suffered, provided those
who purchased them were enabled to do so at a reduced rate. This
policy, long lauded in abstract writings and reviews, was at length
carried into execution by Sir R. Peel, by the tariff of 1842 and
the free-trade measures of 1846.

To protect and extend our colonial dependencies was the great object
of British policy, alike with Whigs and Tories, from the time of
Cromwell to the fall of Napoleon. In them, it was thought our
manufacturers would find a lasting and rapidly increasing market for
their produce, which would, in the end, enable us equally to defy
the hostility, and withstand the rivalry of foreign states. The new
school held that this was an antiquated prejudice: that colonies
were a burden rather than a blessing to the mother country: that the
independence of America was the greatest blessing that ever befell
Great Britain; and that, provided we could buy colonial produce a
little cheaper, it signified nothing though our colonies perished by
the want of remuneration for their industry, or were led to revolt
from exasperation at the cruel and unnatural conduct of the mother
country.

The navy was regarded by all our statesmen, without exception, from
Cromwell to Pitt, as the main security of the British empire; its
bulwark in war; the bridge which united its far-distant provinces
during peace. To feed it with skilled seamen, the Navigation
Laws were upheld even by Adam Smith and the first free-traders,
as the wisest enactments which were to be found in the British
statute-book. But here, too, it was discovered that our ancestors
had been in error: the system under which had flourished for two
centuries the greatest naval power that ever existed, was found to
have been an entire mistake; and provided freights could be had ten
per cent cheaper, it was of no consequence though the fleets of
France and Russia blockaded the Thames and Mersey, and two-thirds of
our trade was carried on in foreign bottoms.

To provide a CURRENCY equal to the wants of the nation, and
capable of growth in proportion to the amount of their numbers
and transactions, was one main object of the old policy of Great
Britain. Thence the establishment of banks in such numbers in
every part of the empire during the eighteenth century, and the
introduction of the suspension of the obligation to pay in gold in
1797, when the necessities of war had drained nearly all that part
of the currency out of the country, and it was evident that, unless
a substitute for it in sufficient quantities was provided, the
nation itself, and all the individuals in it, would speedily become
bankrupt. The marvels of British finance from that time till 1815,
which excited the deserved astonishment of the whole world, had no
effect in convincing the impassioned opponents of Mr Pitt, that
this was the true system adapted for that or any similar crisis. On
the contrary, it left no doubt in their minds that it was entirely
wrong. The whole philosophers and liberal school of politicians
discovered that the very opposite was the right principle; that
gold, the most variable in price and evanescent, because the
most desired and portable of earthly things, was the only safe
foundation for a currency; that paper was worthless and perilous,
unless in so far as it could be instantly converted into that
incomparable metal; and that, consequently, the more the precious
metals were withdrawn from the country, by the necessities of war
or the effects of adverse exchanges, the more the paper circulation
should be contracted. If the last sovereign went out, they held
it clear the last note should be drawn in. The new system was
brought into practice by Sir R. Peel, by the acts of 1844 and 1845,
simultaneously with a vast importation of grain under the free-trade
system--and we know the consequence. We were speedily near our last
sovereign and last note also.

To establish a sinking fund, which should secure to the nation
during peace the means of discharging the debt contracted amidst
the necessities of war, was one of the greatest objects of the old
English policy, which was supported with equal earnestness by Mr
Pitt and Mr Fox, by Mr Addington and Lord Henry Petty. So steadily
was this admirable system adhered to through all the dangers
and necessities of the war, that we had a clear sinking fund of
£15,000,000 a-year, when the contest terminated in 1815, which, if
kept up at that amount, from the indirect taxes from which it was
levied during peace, would, beyond all question, as the loans had
ceased, have discharged the whole debt by the year 1845. But the
liberals soon discovered that this was the greatest of all errors:
it was all a delusion; the mathematical demonstration, on which it
was founded, was a fallacy; and the only wisdom was to repeal the
indirect taxes, from which the sinking fund was maintained, and
leave posterity to dispose of the debt as they best could, without
any fund for its discharge. This system was gradually carried into
effect by the successive repeal of the indirect taxes by different
administrations; until at length, after thirty-three years of peace,
we have, instead of the surplus of fifteen millions bequeathed to us
by the war, an average _deficit_ of fifteen hundred thousand pounds;
and the debt, after the longest peace recorded in British history,
has undergone scarcely any diminution.

Indirect taxation was the main basis of the British finance in
old times--equally when directed by the Whigs as the Tories.
Direct taxes were a last and painful resource, to be reserved for
a period during war, when it had become absolutely unavoidable.
So efficacious was this system proved to be by the event, when
acting on a nation enjoying protected industry, and an adequate and
irremovable currency, that, before the end of the war, £72,000,000
was, amidst universal prosperity, with ease raised from eighteen
millions of people in Great Britain and Ireland. This astonishing
result, unparalleled in the previous history of the world, had no
influence in convincing the modern liberals that the system which
produced it was right. On the contrary, it left no doubt in their
minds that it was entirely wrong. They introduced the opposite
system: in twenty-five years, they repealed £40,000,000 of indirect
taxes; and they reintroduced the income tax as a permanent burden
during peace. We see the result. The sinking fund has disappeared;
the income tax is fixed about our necks; a deficit of from a million
and a half to two millions annually incurred; and it is now more
difficult to extract fifty-two millions annually from twenty-nine
millions of souls, than, at the close of the war, it was to raise
seventy-two millions from eighteen millions of inhabitants.

To discourage revolution, both abroad and at home, and enable
industry, in peace and tranquillity, to reap the fruits of its
toil, was the grand object of the great contest which Pitt's wisdom
bequeathed to his successors, and Wellington's arm brought to a
glorious termination. This, however, was ere long discovered to be
the greatest error of all. England, it was found out, had a decided
interest in promoting the cause of revolution all over the world.
So enamoured did we soon become of the propagandist mania, that we
pursued it in direct opposition to our planned national interests,
and with the entire abrogation of our whole previous policy, for
which we had engaged in the greatest and most costly wars, alike
under Whig and Tory administrations. We supported revolutions in
the South American states, though thereby we reduced to a half of
its former amount the supply of the precious metals throughout the
globe; and, in consequence, increased immensely the embarrassment
which a contracted paper currency had brought upon the nation:
we supported revolution in Belgium, though thereby we brought
the tricolor standard down to Antwerp, and surrendered to French
influence the barrier fortresses won by the victories of Marlborough
and Wellington: we supported it during four years of carnage and
atrocity in Spain, though thereby we undid the work of our own
hands, in the treaty of Utrecht, surrendered the whole objects
gained by the War of the Succession, and placed the female line upon
the throne, as if to invite the French princes to come and carry off
the glittering prize: we supported revolutions in Sicily and Italy,
though thereby we gave such a blow to our export trade, that it sank
£1,400,000 in the single month of last May, and above £5,000,000 in
the course of the year 1848.

To abolish the slave trade was one of the objects which Whigs and
Tories had most at heart in the latter years of the old system;
and in that great and glorious contest Mr Pitt, Mr Fox, and Mr
Wilberforce stood side by side. But this object, so important
in its results, so interesting to humanity from its tendency to
alleviate human suffering, ere long yielded to the enlightened
views of modern liberals. It was discovered that it was much more
important to cheapen sugar _for a time_[8] than to rescue the
African race from perdition. Free trade in sugar was introduced,
although it was demonstrated, and, indeed, confessed, that the
effect of it would be to ruin all the free-labour colonies,
and throw the supply of the world into the hands of the slave
states. Provided, for a few years, you succeeded in reducing the
average retail price of sugar a penny a pound, it was deemed of
no consequence though we extinguished the growth of free-labour
sugar--destroyed colonies in which a hundred millions of British
capital were invested, and doubled the slave trade in extent, and
quadrupled it in horror, throughout the globe.

  [8] Observe, _for a time_! We shall see anon what the price of
  sugar will be when the English colonies are destroyed and the slave
  plantations have the monopoly of the market in their hands.

It had been the constant policy of the British government, under all
administrations, for above a century and a half, to endeavour to
reclaim the Irish population by introducing among them colonies of
English who might teach them industry, and Protestant missionaries
who might reclaim them from barbarism. The Irish landlords and
boroughs were the outposts of civilisation among a race of savages;
the Irish Church the station of Christianity amidst the darkness
of Romish slavery. So effectual was this system, and so perfectly
adapted to the character of the Celtic race--capable of great
things when led by others, but utterly unfit for self-government,
and incapable of improvement when left to itself,--that even in
the ruthless hands of Cromwell, yet reeking with the slaughter of
stormed cities, it soon spread a degree of prosperity through the
country then unknown, and rarely if ever since equalled in that
ill-starred land.[9] But the experience of the utter futility of
all attempts, during a century and a half, to leave the native
Irish Celts to themselves or their own direction, had no effect
whatever in convincing our modern liberals that they were incapable
of self-direction, and would only be ruined by Saxon institutions.
On the contrary, it left no doubt in their minds that the absence
of self-government was the sole cause of the wretchedness of the
country, and that nothing was wanting but an entire participation in
the privileges of British subjects, to render them as industrious,
prosperous, and loyal as the yeomen of Kent or Surrey. In pursuance
of those principles, Catholic Emancipation was granted: the Whigs
had effected one revolution in 1688, by coalescing with the whole
Tories to exclude the Catholics from the government; they brought
about another revolution, in 1829, by coalescing with a section
of the Tories to bring them in. In furtherance of the new system,
so plausible in theory, so dangerous in practice, of extending to
all men, of all races, and in all stages of political advancement,
the same privileges, the liberals successively gave the Irish
the command of their boroughs, the abridgment of the Protestant
Church, and the abolition of tithes as a burden on the tenant.
They encouraged agitation, allowed treason to be openly spoken in
every part of the country, and winked at monster meetings, till
the community was wellnigh thrown into convulsions. Meanwhile,
agriculture was neglected--industry disappeared--capital was
scared away. The land was run out, and became unfit for anything
but lazy-beds of potatoes. The people became agitators, not
cultivators: they were always running about to meetings--not
frequenting fairs. The potato-blight fell on a country thus prepared
for ruin, and the unparalleled misery of 1847, and the rebellion of
1848, were the consequence.

  [9] "Cromwell supplied the void made by his conquering sword,
  by pouring in numerous colonies of the Anglo-Saxon blood and of
  the Calvinistic faith. Strange to say, under that iron rule the
  conquered country began to wear an outward face of prosperity.
  Districts, which had recently been as wild as those where the
  first white settlers of Connecticut were contending with the
  Red Men, _were in a few years transformed into the likeness of
  Kent and Norfolk_. New buildings, roads, and plantations were
  everywhere begun. The rent of estates rose fast: and some of the
  English landowners began to complain that they were met in every
  market by the products of Ireland, and to clamour for protecting
  laws."--MACAULAY'S _History_, i., 130.

It would be easy to carry these illustrations farther, and to trace
the working of the principles we have mentioned through the whole
modern system of government in Great Britain. Enough has been
said to show that the system is neither founded on the principles
contended for by the old Whigs, nor on any appreciation of, or
attention to, the national interests, or the dictates of experience
in any respect. It has arisen entirely from a blind desire of
change, and an opposition to the old system of government, whether
of Whig or Tory origin, and a selfish thirst for aggrandisement on
the part of the moneyed and commercial classes, whom that system
had elevated to riches and power. Experience was not disregarded
by this school of politicians; on the contrary, it was sedulously
attended to, its lessons carefully marked. But it was considered
as a beacon to be avoided, not a light to be followed. Against its
conclusions the whole weight of declamation and shafts of irony
were directed. It had been the _cri de guerre_ of their enemies,
the standard of Mr Pitt's policy; therefore the opposite system
was to be inscribed on their banners. It was the ruling principle
of their political opponents; and, worst of all, it was the system
which, though it had raised the country to power and greatness, had
for twenty years excluded themselves from power. Thence the modern
system, under which the nation has suffered, and is suffering, such
incalculable misfortunes. It has been said, by an enlightened Whig
of the old school, that "this age appears to be one in which _every
conceivable folly_ must be believed and _reduced to practice_ before
it is abandoned." It is really so; and the reason is, it is an age
in which the former system of government, founded on experience and
brought about by necessity, has been supplanted by one based on a
systematic and invariable determination to change the old system in
every particular. The liberals, whether factious or moneyed, of the
new school, flattered themselves they were making great advances in
political science, when they were merely yielding to the same spirit
which made the Calvinists stand up when they prayed, because all
the world before them had knelt down, and sit still during psalms,
because the Roman Catholics had stood up.

But truth is great, and will prevail; experience is its test,
and is perpetually contradicting the theories of man. The year
1848 has been no exception to the maxims of Tacitus and Burke.
Dreadful indeed in suffering, appalling in form, are the lessons
which it has read to mankind! Ten months have not elapsed, since,
by a well-concerted urban tumult, seconded by the treachery of
the national guard, the throne of the Barricades was overturned
in France--and what do we already see on the continent of Europe?
Vienna petitioning for a _continuation_ of the state of siege, as
the only security against the tyranny of democracy: Berlin hailing
with rapture the dissolution of the Assembly, and reappearance
of the king in the capital: Milan restored to the sway of the
Austrians: France seeking, in the _quasi_ imperial crown of Prince
Louis Napoleon, with 90,000 soldiers in its capital, a refuge from
the insupportable evils of a democratic republic. The year 1848 has
added another to the numerous proofs which history affords, that
popular convulsions, from whatever cause arising, can terminate
only in the rule of the sword; but it has taught two other lessons
of incalculable importance to the present and future tranquillity
of mankind. These are, that soldiers who in civil convulsions
fraternise with the insurgents, and violate their oaths, are the
_worst enemies_ of the people, for they inevitably induce a military
despotism, which extinguishes all hopes of freedom. The other is,
that the institution of a national guard is in troubled times of all
others the most absurd; and that, to put arms into the hands of the
people, when warmed by revolutionary passions, is only to light the
torch of civil discord with your own hand, and hand over the country
to anarchy, ruin, and slavery.

Nor has the year been less fruitful of civil premonitions or lessons
of the last importance to the future tranquillity and prosperity of
Great Britain. Numerous popular delusions have been dispelled during
that period. The dreams of Irish independence have been broken;
English Chartism has been crushed. The revolutionists see that the
people of Great Britain are not disposed to yield their property
to the spoiler, their throats to the murderer, their homes to the
incendiary. Free trade and a fettered currency have brought forth
their natural fruits--national embarrassment, general suffering,
popular misery. One half of the wealth of our manufacturing towns
has been destroyed since the new system began. Two years of free
trade and a contracted currency have undone nearly all that twenty
years of protection and a sufficient currency had done. The great
mercantile class have suffered so dreadfully under the effect of
their own measures, that their power for good or for evil has
been essentially abridged. The colossus which, for a quarter of a
century, has bestrode the nation, has been shaken by the earthquake
which itself had prepared. Abroad and at home, in peace and in
war, delusion has brought forth suffering. The year of revolutions
has been the NINTH OF THERMIDOR, OF LIBERAL PRINCIPLES, for it has
brought them to the test of experience.



FRENCH CONQUERORS AND COLONISTS.


The extraordinary deficiency recently exhibited by a great
Continental nation in two qualities eminently prized by
Englishmen--in common consistency, namely, and in common sense--has
cast into the shade all previous shortcomings of the kind, making
them appear remote and trivial. A people of serfs, ruled for
centuries with an iron rod, pillaged for their masters' profit,
and lashed at the slightest murmur, were excusable if, on sudden
emancipation from such galling thraldom, their joyful gambols
exceeded the limits prescribed by public decorum, and by a due
regard to their own future prosperity. They might be forgiven
for dancing round maypoles, and dreaming of social perfection.
It would not be wonderful if they had difficulty in immediately
replacing their expelled tyrants by a capable and stable government,
and if their brief exhilaration were succeeded by a period of
disorganisation and weakness. Such allowances cannot be made for the
mad capers of republican France. The deliverance is inadequate to
account for the ensuing delirium. The grievances swept away by the
February revolution, and which patience, prudence, and moderation,
could not have failed ultimately to remove--as thoroughly, if less
rapidly--were not so terrible as to justify lunacy upon redress.
Nevertheless, since then, the absurdities committed by France, or
at least by Paris, are scarcely explicable save on the supposition
of temporary aberration of intellect. Unimaginative persons have
difficulty in realising the panorama of events, alternately
sanguinary and grotesque, lamentable and ludicrous, spread over the
last ten months. Europe--the portion of it, that is to say, which
has not been bitten by the same rabid and mischievous demon--has
looked on, in utter astonishment, at the painful spectacle of a
leader of its civilisation galloping, with Folly on its crupper,
after mad theories and empty names, and riding down, in the furious
chase, its own prosperity and respectability.

We repeat, then, that these great follies of to-day eclipse the
minor ones of yesterday. When we see France destroying, in a few
weeks, her commerce and her credit, and doing herself more harm
than as many years will repair, we overlook the fact, that for
upwards of fifteen years she has annually squandered from three
to five millions sterling upon an unproductive colony in North
Africa. France used not to be petty in her wars, or paltry in her
enterprises. If she was sometimes quarrelsome and aggressive,
she was wont at least to fasten on foes worthy of her power and
resources. Since 1830 she has derogated in this particular. A
complication of causes--the most prominent being the vanity
characteristic of the nation, the crooked policy of the sovereign,
and the morbid love of fighting bequeathed by the warlike period of
the Empire--has kept France engaged in a costly and discreditable
contest, whose most triumphant results could be but inglorious,
and in which she has decimated her best troops, and deteriorated
her ancient fame, whilst pursuing, with unworthy ferocity and
ruthlessness, a feeble and inoffensive foe. This is no partial or
malicious view of the character of the Algerine war. Deliberately,
and after due reflection, we repeat, that France has gravely
compromised in Africa her reputation as a chivalrous and clement
nation, and that she no longer can claim--as once she was wont to
do--to be as humane in victory as she is valiant in the fight. For
proof of this we need seek no further than in the speeches and
despatches of French generals, of men who themselves have served
and commanded in Africa. We will judge France by the voices of her
own sons, of those she has selected as worthiest to govern her
half-conquered colony, and to marshal her legions against a handful
of Arabs. More than one of these officers testify, voluntarily or
unwittingly, to the barbarity of the system pursued in Africa. What
said General Castellane, in his well-known speech in the Chamber
of Peers, on the 4th July 1845? "We have reduced the country by an
arsenal of axes and phosphorus matches. The trees were cut down,
the crops were burned, and soon the mastery was obtained of a
population reduced to famine and despair." And elsewhere in the same
speech: "Few soldiers perish by the hand of the enemy in this war--a
sort of _man-hunt_ on a large scale, in which the Arabs, ignorant
of European tactics, having no cannon-balls to exchange against
ours, do not fight with equal arms." Monsieur A. Desjobert, long a
deputy for the department of the Lower Seine, is the author of a
volume, and of several pamphlets, upon the Algerine question. In the
most recent of these we find the following remarkable note:--"In
February 1837, General Bugeaud said to the Arabs, 'You shall not
plough, you shall not sow, nor lead your cattle to the pasture,
without our permission.' Later, he gives the following definition
of a razzia: 'A sudden irruption, having for its object to surprise
the tribes, in order to kill the men, and to carry off the women,
children, and cattle.' In 1844, he completes this theory, by saying
to the Kabyles, 'I will penetrate into your mountains, I will burn
your villages and your crops, I will cut down your fruit-trees.'
(Proclamation of the 30th March.) In 1846, rendering an account of
his operations against Abd-el-Kader, he says to the authorities of
Algiers, 'The power of Abd-el-Kader consists in the resources of
the tribes; hence, to ruin his power, we must first ruin the Arabs;
therefore have we burned much, destroyed much.' (From the _Akhbar_
newspaper of February 1846.)" These are significant passages in the
mouth of a general-in-chief. Presently, when we come to details,
we shall show they were not thrown away upon his subordinates.
The extermination of the Arabs was always the real aim of Marshal
Bugeaud; he took little pains to cloak his system, and is too
great a blunderer to have succeeded, had he taken more. A man of
greater presumption than capacity, his audacity, obstinacy, and
unscrupulousness knew no bounds. Before this African _man-hunt_, as
M. Castellane calls it, he was unknown, except as the Duchess de
Berry's jailer, as the slayer of poor Dulong, and as a turbulent
debater, whose noisy declamation, and occasional offences against
the French language, were a standing joke with the newspapers. A
few years elapse, and we find him opposing his stubborn will to
that of Soult, then minister at war, and successfully thwarting
Napoleon's old lieutenant. This he was enabled to do mainly by the
position he had made himself in Africa. He had ridden into power and
importance on the shoulders of the persecuted Arabs, by a system of
razzias and village-burning, of wholesale slaughter and relentless
oppression. Brighter far were the laurels gathered by the lieutenant
of the Empire, than those plucked by Louis Philippe's marshal
amidst the ashes of Bedouin douars and the corpses of miserable
Mussulmans, slain in defence of their scanty birthright, of their
tents, their flocks, and the free range of the desert. Poor was
the defence they could make against their skilful and disciplined
invaders; slight the loss they could inflict in requital of the
heavy one they suffered. Again we are obliged to M. Desjobert for
statistics, gathered from reports to the Commission of Credits, and
from Marshal Bugeaud's own bulletins. From these we learn that the
loss in battle of the French armies, during the first ten years
of the occupation of Algeria, was an average of one hundred and
forty men per annum. In the four following years, eight hundred
and eighty-five men perished. The capture of Constantine cost one
hundred men, the much-vaunted affair of the Smala _nine_, the battle
of Isly TWENTY-SEVEN! We well remember, for we chanced to be in
Paris at the time, the stir produced in that excitable capital by
the battle of Isly. No one, unacquainted with the facts, would have
doubted that the victory was over a most valiant and formidable
foe. People's mouths were filled with this revival of the military
glories of Gaul. Newspapers and picture-shops, poets and painters,
combined to celebrate the exploit and sound the victors' praise.
One engraving _de circonstance_, we remember, represented a sturdy
French foot-soldier, trampling, like Gulliver, a host of Lilliputian
Moors, and carrying a score of them over his shoulder, spitted
on his bayonet. "Out of my way!" was the inscription beneath the
print--"_Les Français seront toujours les Français._" Horace
Vernet, colourist, by special appointment, to the African campaign,
pictorial chronicler of the heroic feats of the house militant of
Orleans, prepared his best brushes, and stretched his broadest
canvass, to immortalise the marshal and his men. After a few days,
two dingy tents and an enormous umbrella were exhibited in the
gardens of the Tuileries; these were trophies of the fight--the
private property of Mohammed-Abderrhaman, the vanquished prince of
Morocco, the real merit of whose conquerors was about as great as
that of an active tiger who gloriously scatters a numerous flock
of sheep. From one of several books relating to Algeria, now upon
our table, we will take a French officer's account of the affair of
Isly. The story of Escoffier, a trumpeter who generously resigned
his horse to his dismounted captain, himself falling into the hands
of the Arabs, whose prisoner he remained for about eighteen months,
is told by M. Alby, an officer of the African army. Although a
little vivid in the colouring, and comprising two or three very
tough "yarns,"--due, we apprehend, to the imagination of trumpeter
or author--its historical portion professes to be, and probably is,
correct; and, at any rate, there can be no reason for suspecting
the writer of depreciating his countrymen's achievements, and
understating their merits. The account of the battle, or rather of
the chase, for fighting there was none, is given by a deserter from
the Spahis, who, after the defeat of the Moors, joined Abd-el-Kader.
The Emir and his Arabs took no part in the affair.[10]

  [10] _A Campaign in the Kabylie._ By DAWSON BORRER, F.R.G.S., &c.
  London, 1848.

  _La Kabylie._ Par un Colon. Paris, 1846.

  _La Captivité du Trompette Escoffier._ Par ERNEST ALBY. 2 vols.
  Brussels, 1848.

"I deserted, with several of my comrades, during the night-march
stolen by the French upon the Moors. We sought the emperor's son
in his camp, and informed him of the movement making by the French
column. The emperor's son had our horses taken away, and gave orders
not to lose sight of us. Then he said to us:--

"'Let them come, those dogs of Christians; they are but thirteen
thousand strong, and we a hundred and sixty thousand: we will
receive them well.'

"The day was well advanced before the Moors perceived the French.
Then the emperor's son ordered his horsemen to mount and advance.
The French marched in a square. They unmasked their artillery, and
the guns sent their deadly charge of grape into the ranks of the
Moors, who immediately took to flight, and the French had nothing to
do but to sabre them."

"The Moors," says M. Alby, "had fine horses and good sabres; but
their muskets were bad; and the men, softened by centuries of peace
and prosperity, smoking keef[11] and eating copiously, might be
expected to run, as they did, at the first cannon-shot."

  [11] The Moors smoke the leaves of hemp instead of tobacco. This
  _keef_, as it is called, easily intoxicates, and renders the
  head giddy. Abd-el-Kader forbade the use of it, and if one of
  his soldiers was caught smoking keef, he received the bastinado.
  _Captivité d'Escoffier_, vol. i. p. 221.

It is hard to understand how the loss of the French should have
amounted to even the twenty-seven men at which it is stated in their
general's bulletin. Did M. Bugeaud, unwilling to admit the facility
of his triumph, slay the score and seven with his goosequill? But
if the victory was easily won, on the other hand, it was largely
rewarded. For having driven before him, by the very first volley
from his guns, a horde of overfed barbarians, enervated by sloth
and narcotics, and total strangers to the tactics of civilised
warfare, the marshal was created a duke! Shade of Napoleon! whether
proudly lingering within the trophy-clad walls of the Invalides,
or passing in spectral review the dead of Austerlitz and Borodino,
suspend your lonely walk, curb your shadowy charger, and contemplate
this pitiable spectacle! You, too, gave dukedoms, and lavished even
crowns, but you gave them for services worth the naming. Ney and the
Moskwa, Massena and Essling, Lannes and Montebello, are words that
bear the coupling, and grace a coronet. The names of the places,
although all three recall brilliant victories, are far less glorious
in their associations than the names of the men. But Bugeaud and
Isly! What can we say of them? Truly, thus much--they, too, are
worthy of each other.

When reviewing, about two years ago, Captain Kennedy's narrative of
travel and adventure in Algeria, we regretted he did not speak out
about the mode of carrying on the war, and about the prospects of
Algerine colonisation; and we hinted a suspicion that the amenities
of French military hospitality, largely extended to a British
fellow-soldier, had induced him, if not exactly to cloak, at least
to shun laying bare, the errors and mishaps of his entertainers.
We cannot make the same complaint of the very pretty book, rich in
vignettes and cream-colour, entitled, _A Campaign in the Kabylie_.
Mr Borrer, whom the Cockneys, contemptuous of terminations, will
assuredly confound with his great gipsy cotemporary, George Borrow
of the Bible, has, like Captain Kennedy, dipped his spoon in French
messes. He has ridden with their regiments, and sat at their board,
and been quartered with their officers, and received kindness and
good treatment on all hands; and therefore any thing that could
be construed into malicious comment would come with an ill grace
from his pen. But it were exaggerated delicacy to abstain from
stating facts, and these he gives in all their nakedness; generally,
however, allowing them to speak for themselves, and adding little
in the way of remark or opinion. In pursuance of this system, he
relates the most horrible instances of outrage and cruelty with a
matter-of-fact coolness, and an absence alike of blame and sympathy,
that may give an unfavourable notion of his heart, to those who do
not accept our lenient interpretation of his cold-blooded style. The
traits he sets down, and which are no more than will be found in
many French narratives, despatches, and bulletins, show how well the
Franco-African army carry out the merciful maxims of Bugeaud.

Mr Borrer, a geographer and antiquary, passed seventeen months in
Algeria; and during his residence there, in May 1846, a column of
eight thousand French troops, commanded by the Duke of Isly in
person, marched against the Kabyles, "that mysterious, bare-headed,
leathern-aproned race, whose chief accomplishment was said to
be that of being 'crack-shots,' their chief art that of neatly
roasting their prisoners alive, and their chief virtue that of
loving their homes." It may interest the reader to hear a rather
more explicit account of this singular people, who dwell in the
mountains that traverse Algeria from Tunis to Morocco--an irregular
domain, whose limits it is difficult exactly to define in words.
The Kabyles are, in fact, the highlanders of North Africa, and they
hold themselves aloof from the Arabs and Europeans that surround
them. Concerning them, we find some diversity in the statements
of Mr Borrer, and of an anonymous Colonist, twelve years resident
at Bougie, whose pamphlet is before us. Of the two, the Frenchman
gives them the best character, but both agree as to their industry
and intelligence, their frugality and skill in agriculture. They
are not nomadic like the Arabs, but live in villages, till the
land, and tend flocks. Dwelling in the mountains, they have few
horses, and fight chiefly on foot. Divided into many tribes, they
are constantly quarreling and fighting amongst themselves, but
they forget their feuds and quickly unite to repel a foreign foe.
"Predisposed by his character," says the Colonist, "to draw near
to civilisation, the Kabyle attaches himself sincerely to the
civilised man when circumstances establish a friendly connexion
between them. He is still inclined to certain vices inherent in
the savage: but of all the Africans, he is the best disposed to
live in friendship and harmony with us, which he will do when
he shall find himself in permanent contact with the European
population." This is not the general opinion, and it differs widely
from that expressed by Mr Borrer. But the Colonist had his own
views, perhaps his own interests, to further. He wrote some months
previous to the expedition which Mr Borrer accompanied, and which
was then not likely to take place, and he strongly advocated its
propriety--admitting, however, that public opinion in France was
greatly opposed to a military incursion into Kabylia. Himself
established at Bougie, of course in some description of commerce,
the necessity of roads connecting the coast and the interior was to
him quite evident. A good many of his countrymen, whose personal
benefit was not so likely to be promoted by causeway-cutting in
Algeria, strongly deprecated any sort of road-making that was likely
to bring on war with the Kabyles. France began to think she was
paying too dear for her whistle. She looked back to the early days
of the Orleans dynasty, when Marshal Clausel promised to found a
rich and powerful colony with only 10,000 men. She glanced at the
pages of the _Moniteur_ of 1837, and there she found words uttered
by the great Bugeaud in the Chamber of Deputies. "Forty-five
thousand men and one good campaign," said the white-headed
warrior, as the Arabs call him, "and in six months the country
is pacified, and you may reduce the army to twenty thousand men,
to be paid by imposts levied on the colony, consequently costing
France nothing." Words, and nothing more--mere wind; the greatest
_bosh_ that ever was uttered, even by Bugeaud, who is proverbial
for dealing largely in that flatulent commodity. Nine years passed
away, and the Commission of the Budget "deplored a situation which
compelled France to maintain an army of more than 100,000 men upon
that African territory." (Report of M. Bignon of the 15th April
1846, p. 237.) Bugeaud himself had mightily changed his tone, and
declared that, to keep Algiers, as large an army would be essential
as had been required to conquer it. Lamoricière, a great authority
in such matters, confirmed the opinion of his senior. Monsieur
Desjobert, and a variety of pamphleteers and newspaper writers,
attacked, with argument, ridicule, and statistics, the party known
as the _Algérophiles_, who made light of difficulties, scoffed
at expense, and predicted the prosperity and splendour of French
Africa. Algeria, according to them, was to become the brightest
gem in the citizen-crown of France. These sanguine gentlemen were
met with facts and figures. During 1846, said the anti-Algerines,
your precious colony will have cost France 125,000,000 of francs.
And they proved it in black and white. There was little chance
of the expense being less in following years. Then came the loss
of men. In 1840, said M. Desjobert, giving chapter and verse for
his statements, 9567 men perished in the African hospitals, out
of an effective army of 63,000. Add those invalids who died in
French hospitals, or in their homes, from the results of African
campaigning, and the total loss is moderately stated at 11,000 men,
or more than one-sixth of the whole force employed. Out of these,
only 227 died in action. The thing seemed hopeless and endless.
What do we get for our money? was the cry. What is our compensation
for the decimation of our young men? France can better employ her
sons, than in sending them to perish by African fevers. What do we
gain by all this expenditure of gold and blood?--The unreasonable
mortals! Had they not gained a Duke of Isly and a Moorish pavilion?
M. Desjobert surely forgets these inestimable acquisitions when he
asks and answers the question--"What remains of all our victories? A
thousand bulletins, and Horace Vernet's big pictures."

"How many times," says the same writer, "has not the subjection of
the Arabs been proclaimed! In 1844, General Bugeaud gains the battle
of Isly. Are the Arabs subdued?

"When the Arabs appear before the judges who dispose of life and
death, they confess their faith, and proclaim their hatred of us;
and when we are simple enough to tell them that some of their race
are devoted to us, they reply, 'Those lie to you, through fear, or
for their own interest; and as often as a scheriff shall come whom
they believe able to conquer you, they will follow him, even into
the streets of Algiers.' (Examination of Bou Maza's brother, 12th
November 1845.) Thus spoke the chief. The common Arab had already
said to the Christian, "If my head and thine were boiled in the same
vessel, my broth would separate itself from thy broth."

This was discouraging to those who had dreamed of the taming of the
Arab; and the more sanguinary mooted ideas of extermination. Such a
project, clearly written down, and printed, and placed on Parisian
breakfast tables, might be startling; in Algeria it had long been
put in practice. What said General Duvivier in his _Solution de
la Question d'Algérie_, p. 285? "For eleven years they have razed
buildings, burned crops, destroyed trees, massacred men, women,
and children, with a still-increasing fury." We have already shown
that this work of extermination was not carried on with perfect
impunity. Here is further confirmation of the fact. "Every Arab
killed," says M. Leblanc de Prébois, another officer, who wrote on
the Algerian war, and wrote from personal experience, "costs us the
death of thirty-three men, and 150,000 francs." Supposing a vast
deal of exaggeration in this statement, the balance still remains
ugly against the French, for whom there is evidently very little
difference between catching an Arab and catching a Tartar. Whilst
upon the subject of extermination, Mr Borrer gives an opinion more
decidedly unfavourable to his French friends than is expressed in
any other part of his book. His estimate of Kabyle virtues differs
considerably, it will be observed, from that of the Colonist, and of
the two is much nearest the truth.

"The abominable vices and debaucheries of the Kabyle race, the
inhuman barbarities they are continually guilty of towards such
as may be cast by tempest, or other misfortune, upon their rugged
shores; the atrocious cruelties and refined tortures they, in common
with the Arab, delight in exercising upon any such enemies as may
be so unhappy as to fall alive into their hands, must render the
hearts of those acquainted with this people perfectly callous as
to what misfortunes may befall them or their country; and many
may think that, as far as the advancement of civilisation is
concerned, the wiping off of the Kabyle and Arab races of Northern
Africa from the face of the earth, would be the greatest boon to
humanity. Though, however, they may be fraught with all the vices
of the Canaanitish tribes of old, yet the command, 'Go ye after
him through the city and smite; let not your eye spare, neither
have ye pity; slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little
children, and women,' is not justifiably issued at the pleasure of
man; and we can but lament to see a great and gallant nation engaged
in a warfare exasperating both parties to indulge in sanguinary
atrocities,--atrocities to be attributed on one side to the
barbarous and savage state of those having recourse to them; but on
the other, proceeding only from a thirst for retaliation and bloody
revenge, unworthy of those enjoying a high position as a civilised
people. War is, as we all know, ever productive of horrors: but such
horrors may be greatly restrained and diminished by the exertions
and example of those in command."

The hoary-headed hero of Isly is not the man to make the exertion,
or set the example. At the beginning of 1847, rumours of a projected
inroad amongst the Kabyles caused uneasiness and dissatisfaction
in Algeria, when such a movement was highly unpopular, as likely
to lead to a long and expensive war. The "Commission of Credits,"
a board appointed by the French Chamber for the particular
investigation and regulation of Algerine affairs, applied to the
minister of war to know if the rumours were well founded. The
minister confessed they were; adding, however, that the expedition
would be quite peaceable; but at the same time laying before the
commission letters from Bugeaud, "expressing regret that force of
arms was not to be resorted to more than was absolutely necessary,
the submission of the aborigines being never certain _until powder
had spoken_." The marshal evidently "felt like fighting." The
Commission protested; the minister rebuked them, bidding them mind
their credits, and not meddle with the royal prerogative. Thus
unjustly snubbed--for they certainly were minding their credits,
by opposing increase of expenditure--the Commission were mute, one
of the members merely observing, by way of a last shot, that it
was easier to refuse to listen than to reply satisfactorily. In
France, public opinion, the Chamber of Deputies, and Marshal Soult,
had, on various occasions, declared against attacking the Kabyles.
"Nevertheless, a proclamation was issued by Marshal Bugeaud to
the inhabitants of the Kabylie, to warn them that the French army
was upon the point of entering their territory, 'to cleanse it of
those adventurers who there preached the war against France.' The
proclamation then went on to state, that the marshal had no desire
to fight with them, or to devastate their property; but that, if
there were amongst them any who wished for war, they would find
him ready to accept it." If a hard-favoured stranger, armed with a
horsewhip, walked uninvited into M. Bugeaud's private residence,
loudly proclaiming he would thrash nobody unless provoked, the
marshal would be likely to resist the intrusion. The Kabyles,
doubtless, thought his advance into their territory an equally
unjustifiable proceeding. As to the pretext of "the adventurers who
preached war," it was unfounded and ridiculous. Such propagandists
have never been listened to in Kabylia. "The voice of the Emir
Abd-el-Kader himself," says the Colonist, "would not obtain a
hearing. Did he not go in person, in 1839, when preparing to break
his treaty of peace with us, and preach the holy war? Did he not
traverse the valley of the Souman, from one end to the other,
to recruit combatants? And what did he obtain from the Kabyles?
Hospitality for a few days, coupled with the formal invitation to
evacuate the country as soon as possible. Did he succeed better
when he lately again tried to raise Kabylia against us?" Mr Borrer
confirms this. Marshal Bugeaud himself had said in the Chamber of
Deputies, "The Kabyles are neither aggressive nor hostile; they
defend themselves vigorously when intruded upon, but they do not
attack." The marshal, whose whole public life has been full of
contradictions, was the first to intrude upon them, although but
a very few years had elapsed since he said in a pamphlet, "The
Kabyles are numerous and very warlike; they have villages, and their
agriculture is sedentary; already there is too little land to supply
their wants; there is no room, therefore, for Europeans in the
mountains of Kabylia, and they would cut a very poor figure there."
This last prophetic sentence was realised by M. Bugeaud himself, who
certainly made no very brilliant appearance when, forgetting his
former theory, he hazarded himself in May 1847, at the head of eight
thousand men, and with Mr Borrer in his train, amongst the hardy
mountaineers of Kabylia.

Hereabouts Mr Borrer quotes, in French, the statement of a member of
the Commission already referred to. It is worth extracting, as fully
confirming our conviction that the conduct of France in Algeria
has been throughout characterised by an utter want of judgment and
justice. "The native towns have been invaded, ruined, sacked, by
our administration, more even than by our arms. In time of peace,
a great number of private estates have been ravaged and destroyed.
A multitude of title-deeds delivered to us for verification have
never been restored. Even in the environs of Algiers, fertile
lands have been taken from the Arabs and given to Europeans, who,
unable or unwilling to cultivate their new possessions, have
farmed them out to their former owners, who have thus become the
mere stewards of the inheritance of their fathers. Elsewhere,
tribes, or fractions of tribes, not hostile to us, but who, on the
contrary, had fought for us, have been driven from their territory.
Conditions have been accepted from them, and not kept--indemnities
promised, and never paid--until we have compromised our honour even
more than their interests." Such a statement, proceeding from a
Frenchman--from one, too, delegated by his government, to examine
the state of the colony--is quite conclusive as to administrative
proceedings in Algeria. It would be superfluous and impertinent to
add another line of evidence. A comment may be appropriate. "Is it
not Montesquieu," says Mr Borrer, "in his _Esprit des Lois_, who
observes--'The right of conquest, though a necessary and legitimate
right, is an unhappy one, bequeathing to the conqueror a heavy debt
to humanity, only to be acquitted by repairing, as far as possible,
those evils of which he has been the cause'?--and Montesquieu was a
wise man, and a Frenchman!"

Dismissing this branch of the subject, let us see how the Duke
of Isly made "the powder speak" in Kabylia, and try our hand
at a rough sketch, taking the loan of Mr Borrer's colours. A
strong body of French troops--the 8000 have been increased, since
departure, by several battalions and some spahis--are encamped in
a rich valley, cutting down the unripe wheat for the use of their
horses, whilst, from the surrounding heights, the Kabyles gloomily
watch the unscrupulous foragers. "Now 'soft-winged evening,'" as
Mr Dawson Borrer poetically expresses himself, "hovers o'er the
scene, chasing from woodlands and sand-rock heights the gilded
tints of the setting sun." In other words, it gets dark--and shots
are heard. The natives, vexed at the liberties taken with their
crops, harass the outposts. Their bad powder and overloaded guns
have no chance against French muskets. "In the name of the Prophet,
HEADS!" Bugeaud the Merciful pays for them ten francs a-piece. Four
are presented to him before breakfast. The premium is to make the
soldiers alert against horse-stealers. Ten francs being a little
fortune to a French soldier, whose pay in hard cash is two or three
farthings a-day, Mr Borrer suspects the heads are sometimes taken
from shoulders where they have a right to remain. An Arab is always
an Arab, whether a horse-stealer or a mere idler. But no matter--a
few more or less. Day returns; the column marches; the Kabyles
show little of the intrepidity, in defence of their hearths and
altars, attributed to them by M. Bugeaud and others. Their horsemen
fly before a platoon of French cavalry; the infantry limit their
offensive operations to cowardly long shots at the rear-guard. Four
venerable elders bring two yoked oxen in token of submission. In
general, the inhabitants have disappeared. Their deserted towns
appear, in the distance, by no means inferior to many French and
Italian villages. The marshal will not permit exploring parties
for fear of ambuscade. Night arrives, and passes without incident
of note. At three in the morning, the camp is aroused by hideous
yells. A sentinel has fired at a horse-thief and broken his leg,
and now, mindful of the ten francs, tries to cut off the head of
the wounded man, who objects and screams. A bayonet-thrust stops
his mouth, and the _bill on Bugeaud_ is duly severed. The next day
is passed in skirmishing with the Beni-Abbez, the most numerous
tribe of the valley of the Souman, but not a very warlike one--so
says the Colonist; and, indeed, they offer but slight resistance,
although they, or some other tribes, make a firm and determined
attack upon the French outposts in the course of that night. There
is more smoke than bloodshed; but the Kabyles show considerable
pluck, burn a prodigious number of cartridges, and make no doubt
they have nearly "rubbed out" the Christians; in which particular
they are rather mistaken--the French, not choosing to leave their
camp, having quietly lain down, and allowed the Berber lead to fly
over them. At last the assailants' ammunition runs low, and they
retire, leaving a sprinkling of dead. Mr Borrer quotes the Koran.
"'Those of our brothers who fall in defence of the true faith,
are not dead, but live invisible, receiving their nourriture from
the hand of the Most High,' says the Prophet." _Nourriture_ is
not quite English, at least with that orthography; but no matter
for Mr Borrer's Gallicisms, which are many. We rush with him into
the Kabyle fire. Here he sits, halted amongst the olive-trees,
philosophically lighting his pipe, the bullets whistling about his
ears, whilst he admires the _sang froid_ of a pretty _vivandière_,
seated astride upon her horse, and jesting at the danger. The column
advances--the Kabyles retreat, fighting, pursued by the French
shells, which they hold in particular horror, and call the howitzer
the _twice-firing cannon_. The object of the advance is to destroy
the towns and villages of the Beni-Abbez, the night-attack upon his
bivouac affording the marshal a pretext. The villages are surrounded
with stiff walls of stones and mud, crowned with strong thorny
fences, and having hedges of prickly pear growing at their base; and
the gaunt burnoosed warriors make good fight through loop-holes and
from the terraces of their houses. But resistance is soon overcome,
and the narrow streets are crowded with Frenchmen, ravishing,
massacring, plundering; no regard to sex or age; outrage for every
woman--the edge of the sword for all.

"Upon the floor of one of the chambers lay a little girl of twelve
or fourteen years of age, weltering in gore, and in the agonies of
death: an accursed ruffian thrust his bayonet into her. God will
requite him.... When the soldiers had ransacked the dwellings, and
smashed to atoms all they could not carry off, or did not think
worth seizing as spoil, they heaped the remnants and the mattings
together and fired them. As I was hastily traversing the streets
to regain the outside of the village, disgusted with the horrors I
witnessed, flames burst forth on all sides, and torrents of fire
came swiftly gliding down the thoroughfares, for the flames had
gained the oil. An instant I turned--the fearful doom of the poor
concealed child and the decrepid mother flashing on my mind. It was
too late.... The unfortunate Kabyle child was doubtless consumed
with her aged parent. How many others may have shared her fate!"

At noon, the atmosphere is laden with smoke arising from the
numerous burning villages. From one spot nine may be counted,
wrapped in flames. There is merry-making in the French camp.
Innumerable goatskins, full of milk, butter, figs, and flour, are
produced and opened. Some are consumed; more are squandered and
strewn upon the ground. Let the Kabyle dogs starve! Have they not
audaciously levelled their long guns at the white-headed warrior
and his followers, who asked nothing but submission, free passage
through the country, corn-fields for their horses, and the fat
of the land for themselves? But stay--there is still a town to
take, the last, the strongest, the refuge of the women and of the
aged. Its defence is resolute, but at last it falls. "Ravished,
murdered, burnt, hardly a child escaped to tell the tale. A few of
the women fled to the ravines around the village; but troops swept
the brushwood; and the stripped and mangled bodies of females might
there be seen.... One vast sheet of flame crowned the height, which
an hour or two before was ornamented with an extensive and opulent
village, crowded with inhabitants. It seemed to have been the very
emporium of commerce of the Beni-Abbez; fabrics of gunpowder, of
arms, of haïks, burnooses, and different stuffs, were there. The
streets boasted of numerous shops of workers in silver, workers in
cord, venders of silk, &c." All this the soldiers pillaged, or the
fire devoured; then the insatiable flames gained the corn and olive
trees, and converted a smiling and prosperous district into a black
and barren waste. Bugeaud looked on and pronounced it good, and
his men declared the country "well cleaned out," and vaunted their
deeds of rapine and violence. "I heard two ruffians relating, with
great gusto, how many young girls had been burned in one house,
after being abused by their brutal comrades and themselves." Out
of consideration for his readers, Mr Borrer says, he writes down
but the least shocking of the crimes and atrocities he that day
witnessed. We have no inclination to transcribe a tithe of the
horrors he records, and at sight of which, he assures us, the blood
of many a gallant French officer boiled in his veins. He mentions
no attempt on the part of these compassionate officers to curb the
ferocity of their men, who had not the excuse of previous severe
sufferings, of a long and obstinate resistance, and of the loss of
many of their comrades, to allege in extenuation of their savage
violence. History teaches us that, in certain circumstances, as,
for instance, after protracted sieges, great exposure, and a long
and bloody fight, soldiers of all nations are liable to forget
discipline, and, maddened by fury, by suffering and excitement, to
despise the admonitions and reprimands of the chiefs--nay, even
to turn their weapons against those whom for years they have been
accustomed to respect and implicitly obey. But there is no such
excuse in the instance before us. A pleasant military promenade
through a rich country, fine weather, abundant rations, and just
enough skirmishing to give zest to the whole affair, whose fighting
part was exceeding brief, as might be expected, when French bayonets
and artillery were opposed to the clumsy guns and irregular tactics
of the Beni-Abbez--we find nothing in this picture to extenuate
the horrible cruelties enacted by the conquerors after their
easily achieved victory. Their whole loss, according to their
marshal's bulletin, amounted to fifty-seven killed and wounded.
This included the loss in the night-attack on the camp. In fact,
it was mere child's play for the disciplined French soldiery; and
Mr Borrer virtually admits this, by applying to the affair General
Castellane's expression of a _man-hunt_. He then, with no good
grace, endeavours to find an excuse for his campaigning comrades.
"The ranks of the French army in Africa are composed, in great
measure, of the very scum of France." They have condemned regiments
in Africa, certainly; the Foreign Legion are reckless and reprobate
enough; we dare say the Zouaves, a mixed corps of wild Frenchmen and
tamed Arabs, are neither tender nor scrupulous; but these form a
very small portion of the hundred thousand French troops in Africa,
and there is little picking and choosing amongst the line regiments,
who take their turn of service pretty regularly, neither is there
reason for considering the men who go to Algeria to be greater
scamps than those who remain in France. So this will not do, Mr
Borrer: try another tack. "The only sort of excuse for the horrors
committed by the soldiery in Algeria, is their untamed passions,
and the fire added to their natural ferocity by the atrocious
cruelties so often committed by the Arabs upon their comrades in
arms, who have been so unhappy as to fall into their power." This
is more plausible, although it is a query who began the system of
murderous reprisals. Arab treatment of prisoners is not mild. On the
evening of the 1st June, some men straggled from the French bivouac,
and were captured. "It was said that from one of the outposts the
Kabyles were seen busily engaged, in roasting their victims before
a large fire upon a neighbouring slope; but whether this was a fact
or not, I never learned." It was possibly true. Escoffier tells
us how one of his fellow-prisoners, a Jew named Wolf, who fell
into the hands of Moorish shepherds, was thrown upon a blazing
pile of faggots; and although we suspect the brave trumpeter, or
his historian, of occasional exaggeration, there are grounds for
crediting the authenticity of this statement. As to Mr Borrer, he
guarantees nothing but what he sees with his own eyes, the camp
being, he says, full of _blagueurs_, or tellers of white lies. The
inventions of these mendacious gentry are not always as innocent
as he appears to think them. Imaginary cruelties, attributed to
an enemy, are very apt to impose upon credulous soldiers, and to
stimulate them to unnecessary bloodshed, and to acts of lawless
revenge. Many a village has been burned, and many an inoffensive
peasant sabred, on the strength of such lying fabrications. In
Africa especially, where the _lex talionis_ seems fully recognised,
and its enforcement confided to the first straggler who chooses to
fire a house or stick an Arab, the _blagueurs_ should be handed
over, in our opinion, to summary punishment. On the advance of the
French column, a soldier or two, straying from the bivouac to bathe
or fish, had here and there been shot by the lurking Kabyles. On its
return, "I was somewhat surprised," Mr Borrer remarks, "to observe,
in the wake of the column, flames bursting forth from the gourbies
(villages) left in our rear. It was well known that the tribe upon
whose territory we were riding had submitted, and that their sheikh
was even riding at the head of the column." None could explain the
firing of the villages. The sheikh, indignant at the treachery of
the French, set spurs to his mare, and was off like the wind. The
conflagration was traced to soldiers of the rear-guard, desirous
to revenge their comrades, picked off on the previous march. We
are not told that the crime was brought home to the perpetrators,
or visited upon them. If it was, Mr Borrer makes no mention of the
fact, but passes on, as if the burning of a few villages were a
trifle scarce worth notice. How were the Kabyles to distinguish
between the acts of the private soldier and of the epauleted
chief? Their submission had just been accepted, and friendly words
spoken to them: their sheikh rode beside the gray-haired leader
of the Christians, and marked the apparent subordination of the
white-faced soldiery. Suddenly a gross violation occurred of the
amicable understanding so recently come to. How persuade them that
the submissive and disciplined soldiers they saw around them would
venture such breach of faith without the sanction or connivance of
their commander? The offence is that of an insignificant sentinel,
but the dirt falls upon the beard of Bugeaud; and confidence in the
promises of the lying European is thoroughly and for ever destroyed.

A colony, whose mode of acquisition and of government, up to the
present time, reflects so little credit upon French arms and
administrators, ought certainly to yield pecuniary results or
advantages of some kind, which, in a mercenary point of view, might
balance the account. France surely did not place her reputation
for humanity and justice in the hands of Marshal Bugeaud and of
others of his stamp, without anticipating some sort of compensation
for its probable deterioration. Such expectations have hitherto
been wholly unfulfilled; and we really see little chance of their
probable or speedy realisation. The colony is as unpromising, as
the colonists are inapt to improve it. The fact is, the work of
colonisation has not begun. The French are utterly at a loss how to
set about it. All kinds of systems have been proposed. Bugeaud has
had his--that of military colonisation, which he maintained, with
characteristic stubbornness, in the teeth of public opinion, of the
French government, of common sense, and even of possibility. He
proposed to take, during ten years, one hundred and twenty thousand
recruits from the conscription, and to settle them in Africa, with
their wives. He estimated the expense of this scheme at twelve
millions sterling. His opponents stated its probable cost at four
times that sum. Whichever estimate was correct, it is not worth
while examining the plan, which for a moment was entertained by a
government commission, but has since been completely abandoned.
It presupposes an extraordinary and arbitrary stretch of power
on the part of the government that should adopt such a system
of compulsory colonisation. We are surprised to find Mr Borrer
inclined to favour the exploded plan. General Lamoricière (the
terrible _Bour-à-boi_ of the Arabs,[12]) proposed to give premiums
to agriculturists settling in Algeria, at the rate of twenty-five
per cent of their expenses of clearing, irrigation, construction,
and plantation. But M. Lamoricière--a very practical man indeed,
with his sabre in his fist, and at the head of his Zouaves--is a
shallow theorist in matters of colonisation. The staff of surveyors,
valuers, and referees essential to carry out his project, would
alone have been a heavy additional charge on the unprofitable
colony. "M. Lamoricière," says M. Desjobert, "was one of the warmest
advocates of the occupation of Bougie," (a seaport of Kabylie,)
"and partly directed, in 1833, that fatal expedition." (Fatal, M.
Desjobert means, by reason of its subsequent cost in men and money.
The town was taken by a small force on the 29th September 1833.)
"The soldiers were then told that their mission was agricultural
rather than military, that they would have to handle the pick and
the spade more frequently than the musket. The unfortunates have
certainly handled pick and spade; but it was to dig in that immense
cemetery which, each day, swallows up their comrades. Already,
in 1836, General d'Erlon, ex-governor of Algiers, demanded the
evacuation of Bougie, which had devoured, in three years, three
thousand men and seven millions of francs." The demand was not
complied with, and Bougie has continued to consume more than its
quota of the six thousand men at which M. Desjobert estimates the
average annual loss, by disease alone, of the African army. Bougie
has not flourished under the tricolor. In former times a city of
great riches and importance, it still contained several thousand
inhabitants when taken by the French. At the period of Mr Borrer's
visit, it reckoned a population of five hundred, exclusive of the
garrison of twelve hundred men. To return, however, to the systems
of colonisation. When the generals had had their say, it was the
turn of the commissions; the commission of Africa, that of the
Chamber of Deputies, &c. There was no lack of projects; but none of
them answered. The colonial policy of the Orleans government was
eminently short-sighted. This is strikingly shown in Mr Borrer's
14th chapter, "A Word upon the Colony." Of the fertile plain
of the Metidja, containing about a million and a half acres of
arable and pasture land, a very small portion is cultivated. The
French found a garden; they have made a desert. "Before the French
occupation, vast tracts which now lie waste, sacrificed to palmetta
and squills, were cultivated by the Arabs, who grew far more corn
than was required for their own consumption; whereas now, they grow
barely sufficient: the consequence of which is, that the price of
corn is enormous in Algeria at present." Land is cheap enough, but
labour is dear, because the necessaries of life are so. Instead of
making Algiers a free port, protection to French manufactures is
the order of the day, and this has driven Arab commerce to Tunis
and Morocco. Rivalry with England--the feverish desire for colonies
and for the supremacy of the seas--must unquestionably be ranked
amongst the motives of the tenacious retention of such an expensive
possession as Algeria. And now the odious English cottons are
an obstacle to the prosperity of the colony. To sell a few more
bales of French calicoes and crates of French hardware, the wise
men at Paris put an effectual check upon the progress of African
agriculture. Here, if anywhere, free-trade might be introduced
with advantage; in common necessaries, at any rate, and for a few
years, till the country became peopled, and the colonists had
overcome the first difficulties of their position. It would make
very little difference to Rouen and Lyons, whilst to the settlers
it would practically work more good than would have been done them
by M. Lamoricière's _subvention_, supposing this to have been
adopted, and that the heavily-taxed agriculturist of France--in
many parts of which country land pays but two and a half or three
per cent--had consented to pay additional imposts for the benefit
of the agriculturist of Algeria. In the beginning, the notion of
the French government was, that its new conquest would colonise
itself unassisted; that there would be a natural and steady flow
of emigrants from the mother country. In any case this expectation
would probably have proved fallacious--at least it would never have
been realised to the extent anticipated; but the small encouragement
given to such emigration, rendered it utterly abortive. The
"stream" of settlers proved a mere dribble. Security and justice,
Mr Thiers said, were all that France owed her colony. Even these
two things were not obtained, in the full sense of the words. The
centralisation system weighed upon Algeria. Everything was referred
to Paris. Hence interminable correspondence, and delays innumerable.
In the year 1846, Mr Borrer says, twenty-four thousand despatches
were received by the civil administration from the chief _bureau_
in the French capital, in exchange for twenty-eight thousand sent.
Instead of imparting all possible celerity to the administrative
forms requisite to the establishment of emigrants, these must
often wait a year or more before they are put in possession of
the land granted. Meanwhile they expend their resources, and are
enervated by idleness and disease. The climate of North Africa
is ill-adapted to French constitutions. M. Desjobert has already
told us the average loss of the army, and General Duvivier, in
his _Solution de la Question d'Algérie_, fully corroborated his
statements. "A man," said the general, "whose constitution is not
in harmony with the climate of Africa, never adapts himself to it;
he suffers, wastes away, and dies. The expression, that a mass of
men who have been for some time in Africa have become inured to
the climate, is inexact. They have not become inured to it; they
have been _decimated by death_. _The climate is a great sieve,
which allows a rapid passage to everything that is not of a certain
force._" Supposing 100,000 men sent from France to Algeria for six
years' service. At the end of that time, their loss by disease
alone, at the rate of six per cent--proved by M. Desjobert to be
the annual average--would amount to upwards of 30,000, or to more
than three-tenths of the whole. The emigrants fare no better.
"They look for milk and honey," says Borrer: "they find palmetta
and disease. The villages scattered about the Sahel or Massif of
Algiers (a high ground at the back of the city, forming a rampart
between the Metidja and the Mediterranean) are, with one or two
exceptions, a type of desolation. Perched upon the most arid spots,
distant from water, the poor tenants lie sweltering between sun
and sirocco." A Mississippi swamp must be as eligible "squatting"
ground as this--Arabs instead of alligators, and the Algerine fever
in place of Yellow Jack. "At the gates of Algiers, in the villages
of the Sahel," said the "_Algérie_" newspaper of the 22d December
1845, "the colonists desert, driven away by hunger. If any remain,
it is because they have no strength to move. In the plain of the
Metidja, the misery and desolation are greater still. At Fondouck,
in the last five months, 120 persons have died, out of a population
of 280." The reporter to the Commission of the French budget of 1837
(Monsieur Bignon) admitted that "the results of the colonisation are
almost negative." He could not obtain, he said, an estimate of the
agricultural population. At the same period, an Algiers newspaper
(_La France Algérienne_) estimated the European agriculturists at
7000, two-thirds of whom were mere market-gardeners.

  [12] "General Lamoricière habitually carries a stick. This has
  procured him, from the Arabs, the name of the _Père-au-bâton_, (the
  father with the stick:) _Bour-à-boi_. One of his orderly officers,
  my friend and comrade Captain Bentzman, gives _Araouah_ as the
  proper orthography of _Bour-à-boi_. We have followed Escoffier's
  pronunciation."--_Captivité d'Escoffier_, vol. i. p. 30.

It is unnecessary to multiply proofs; and we will here conclude this
imperfect sketch of Franco-African colonisation, of its crimes, its
errors, and its cost, by extracting a rather remarkable passage
from a writer we have more than once referred to, and who, although
perhaps disposed to view things in Algeria upon the black side, is
yet deserving of credit, as well by his position as by reason of his
painstaking research and, so far as we have verified them, accurate
statistics.

"The colonists cannot deny," says Monsieur Desjobert in his _Algérie
en_ 1846, "and they admit:

"1º. That Europe alone maintains the 200,000 Europeans in Algeria.
In 1846 we are compelled to repeat what General Bernard, minister
of war, said in 1838: 'Algeria resembles a naked rock, which it is
necessary to supply with everything, except air and water.'

"2º. That so long as we remain in this precarious situation, a naval
war, by interrupting the communications, would compromise the safety
of our army. In 1846 we repeat M. Thiers' words, uttered in 1837:
'If war surprises you in the state of indecision in which you are, I
say that the disgraceful evacuation of Africa will be inevitable.'

"M. Thiers did not speak the whole truth when he talked of
evacuation. In such an extremity, evacuation would be impossible.
Our army would perish of misery, and its remnant would fall into the
hands of the enemy."

Another enemy than the Arabs is here evidently pointed at; that
possible foe is now a friend to France, and we trust will long
remain so. But on many accounts the sentences we have just quoted
are significant, as proceeding from the pen of a French deputy. They
need no comment, and we shall offer none. We wait with interest to
see if France's African colony prospers better under the Republic of
1848 than it did under the Monarchy of 1830.



THE CAXTONS.


PART IX.--CHAPTER XXXIX.

And my father pushed aside his books.

O young reader, whoever thou art,--or reader, at least, who hast
been young,--canst thou not remember some time when, with thy wild
troubles and sorrows as yet borne in secret, thou hast come back
from that hard, stern world which opens on thee when thou puttest
thy foot out of the threshold of home--come back to the four quiet
walls, wherein thine elders sit in peace--and seen, with a sort of
sad amaze, how calm and undisturbed all is there? That generation
which has gone before thee in the path of the passions--the
generation of thy parents--(not so many years, perchance, remote
from thine own)--how immovably far off, in its still repose, it
seems from thy turbulent youth! It has in it a stillness as of a
classic age, antique as the statues of the Greeks. That tranquil
monotony of routine into which those lives that preceded thee have
merged--the occupations that they have found sufficing for their
happiness, by the fireside--in the armchair and corner appropriated
to each--how strangely they contrast thine own feverish excitement!
And they make room for thee, and bid thee welcome, and then resettle
to their hushed pursuits, as if nothing had happened! Nothing had
happened! while in thy heart, perhaps, the whole world seems to have
shot from its axis, all the elements to be at war! And you sit down,
crushed by that quiet happiness which you can share no more, and
smile mechanically, and look into the fire; and, ten to one, you say
nothing till the time comes for bed, and you take up your candle,
and creep miserably to your lonely room.

Now, if in a stage coach in the depth of winter, when three
passengers are warm and snug, a fourth, all besnowed and frozen,
descends from the outside and takes place amongst them, straightway
all the three passengers shift their places, uneasily pull up their
cloak collars, re-arrange their "comforters," feel indignantly
a sensible loss of caloric--the intruder has at least made a
sensation. But if you had all the snows of the Grampians in your
heart, you might enter unnoticed: take care not to tread on the
toes of your opposite neighbour, and not a soul is disturbed, not a
"comforter" stirs an inch! I had not slept a wink, I had not even
laid down all that night--the night in which I had said farewell
to Fanny Trevanion--and the next morning, when the sun rose, I
wandered out--where I know not. I have a dim recollection of long,
gray, solitary streets--of the river, that seemed flowing in dull
silence, away, far away, into some invisible eternity--trees and
turf, and the gay voices of children. I must have gone from one end
of the great Babel to the other: but my memory only became clear
and distinct when I knocked, somewhere before noon, at the door of
my father's house, and, passing heavily up the stairs, came into
the drawing-room, which was the rendezvous of the little family;
for, since we had been in London, my father had ceased to have his
study apart, and contented himself with what he called "a corner"--a
corner wide enough to contain two tables and a dumb waiter, with
chairs _à discretion_ all littered with books. On the opposite side
of this capacious corner sat my uncle, now nearly convalescent, and
he was jotting down, in his stiff military hand, certain figures in
a little red account-book--for you know already that my uncle Roland
was, in his expenses, the most methodical of men.

My father's face was more benign than usual, for, before him lay a
proof--the first proof of his first work--his one work--the Great
Book! Yes! it had positively found a press. And the first proof of
your first work--ask any author what _that_ is! My mother was out,
with the faithful Mrs Primmins, shopping or marketing no doubt;
so, while the brothers were thus engaged, it was natural that my
entrance should not make as much noise as if it had been a bomb,
or a singer, or a clap of thunder, or the last "great novel of
the season," or anything else that made a noise in those days. For
what makes a noise now? Now, when the most astonishing thing of all
is in our easy familiarity with things astounding--when we say,
listlessly, "Another revolution at Paris," or, "By the bye, there
is the deuce to do at Vienna!"--when De Joinville is catching fish
in the ponds at Claremont, and you hardly turn back to look at
Metternich on the pier at Brighton!

My uncle nodded, and growled indistinctly; my father--

"Put aside his books; you have told us that already."

Sir, you are very much mistaken, he did not put aside his books, for
he was not engaged in them--he was reading his proof. And he smiled,
and pointed to it (the proof I mean) pathetically, and with a kind
of humour, as much as to say--"What can you expect, Pisistratus?--my
new baby! in short clothes--or long primer, which is all the same
thing!"

I took a chair between the two, and looked first at one, then at
the other, and--heaven forgive me!--I felt a rebellious, ungrateful
spite against both. The bitterness of my soul must have been deep
indeed to have overflowed in that direction, but it did. The grief
of youth is an abominable egotist, and that is the truth. I got up
from the chair, and walked towards the window; it was open, and
outside the window was Mrs Primmins' canary, in its cage. London
air had agreed with it, and it was singing lustily. Now, when the
canary saw me standing opposite to its cage, and regarding it
seriously, and, I have no doubt, with a very sombre aspect, the
creature stopped short, and hung its head on one side, looking at
me obliquely and suspiciously. Finding that I did it no harm, it
began to hazard a few broken notes, timidly and interrogatively, as
it were, pausing between each; and at length, as I made no reply,
it evidently thought it had solved the doubt, and ascertained that
I was more to be pitied than feared--for it stole gradually into
so soft and silvery a strain that, I verily believe, it did it on
purpose to comfort me!--me, its old friend, whom it had unjustly
suspected. Never did any music touch me so home as did that long,
plaintive cadence. And when the bird ceased, it perched itself close
to the bars of the cage, and looked at me steadily with its bright
intelligent eyes. I felt mine water, and I turned back and stood
in the centre of the room, irresolute what to do, where to go. My
father had done with the proof, and was deep in his folios. Roland
had clasped his red account book, restored it to his pocket, wiped
his pen carefully, and now watched me from under his great beetle
brows. Suddenly he rose, and, stamping on the hearth with his cork
leg, exclaimed, "Look up from those cursed books, brother Austin!
What is there in that lad's face? Construe _that_, if you can!"


CHAPTER XL.

And my father pushed aside his books, and rose hastily. He took off
his spectacles, and rubbed them mechanically, but he said nothing;
and my uncle, staring at him for a moment, in surprise at his
silence, burst out,--

"Oh! I see--he has been getting into some scrape, and you are angry!
Fie! young blood will have its way, Austin--it will. I don't blame
that--it is only when--come here, Sisty! Zounds! man, come here."

My father gently brushed off the captain's hand, and, advancing
towards me, opened his arms. The next moment I was sobbing on his
breast.

"But what is the matter?" cried Captain Roland, "will nobody
say what is the matter? Money, I suppose--money, you confounded
extravagant young dog. Luckily you have got an uncle who has more
than he knows what to do with. How much?--fifty?--a hundred? two
hundred? How can I write the cheque, if you'll not speak?"

"Hush, brother! it is no money you can give that will set this
right. My poor boy! have I guessed truly? Did I guess truly the
other evening, when--"

"Yes, sir, yes! I have been so wretched. But I am better now--I can
tell you all."

My uncle moved slowly towards the door: his fine sense of delicacy
made him think that even he was out of place in the confidence
between son and father.

"No, uncle," I said, holding out my hand to him, "stay; you too can
advise me--strengthen me. I have kept my honour yet--help me to keep
it still."

At the sound of the word honour Captain Roland stood mute, and
raised his head quickly.

So I told all--incoherently enough at first, but clearly and
manfully as I went on. Now I know that it is not the custom of
lovers to confide in fathers and uncles. Judging by those mirrors
of life, plays and novels, they choose better;--valets and
chambermaids, and friends whom they have picked up in the street,
as I had picked up poor Francis Vivian--to these they make clean
breasts of their troubles. But fathers and uncles--to them they are
close, impregnable, "buttoned to the chin." The Caxtons were an
eccentric family, and never did anything like other people. When I
had ended, I lifted my eyes, and said pleadingly, "Now, tell me, is
there no hope--none?"

"Why should there be none?" cried Captain Roland hastily--"the De
Caxtons are as good a family as the Trevanions; and as for yourself,
all I will say is, that the young lady might choose worse for her
own happiness."

I wrung my uncles hand, and turned to my father in anxious fear--for
I knew that, in spite of his secluded habits, few men ever formed
a sounder judgment on worldly matters, when he was fairly drawn to
look at them. A thing wonderful is that plain wisdom which scholars
and poets often have for others, though they rarely deign to use it
for themselves. And how on earth do they get at it? I looked at my
father, and the vague hope Roland had excited fell as I looked.

"Brother," said he slowly, and shaking his head, "the world, which
gives codes and laws to those who live in it, does not care much for
a pedigree, unless it goes with a title-deed to estates."

"Trevanion was not richer than Pisistratus when he married Lady
Ellinor," said my uncle.

"True; but Lady Ellinor was not then an heiress, and her father
viewed these matters as no other peer in England perhaps would.
As for Trevanion himself, I dare say he has no prejudices about
station, but he is strong in common sense. He values himself on
being a practical man. It would be folly to talk to him of love, and
the affections of youth. He would see in the son of Austin Caxton,
living on the interest of some fifteen or sixteen thousand pounds,
such a match for his daughter as no prudent man in his position
could approve. And as for Lady Ellinor"--

"She owes us much, Austin!" exclaimed Roland, his face darkening.

"Lady Ellinor is now what, if we had known her better, she promised
always to be--the ambitious, brilliant, scheming woman of the world.
Is it not so, Pisistratus?"

I said nothing. I felt too much.

"And does the girl like you?--but I think it is clear she does!"
exclaimed Roland. "Fate--fate; it has been a fatal family to us!
Zounds, Austin, it was your fault. Why did you let him go there?"

"My son is now a man--at least in heart, if not in years--can man
be shut from danger and trial? They found me in the old parsonage,
brother!" said my father mildly.

My uncle walked, or rather stumped, three times up and down the
room; and he then stopped short, folded his arms, and came to a
decision--

"If the girl likes you, your duty is doubly clear--you can't take
advantage of it. You have done right to leave the house, for the
temptation might be too strong."

"But what excuse shall I make to Mr Trevanion?" said I feebly--"what
story can I invent? So careless as he is while he trusts, so
penetrating if he once suspects, he will see through all my
subterfuges, and--and--"

"It is as plain as a pike-staff," said my uncle abruptly--"and
there need be no subterfuge in the matter. 'I must leave you, Mr
Trevanion.' 'Why?' says he. 'Don't ask me.' He insists. 'Well then,
sir, if you must know, I love your daughter. I have nothing--she
is a great heiress. You will not approve of that love, and
therefore I leave you!' That is the course that becomes an English
gentleman--eh, Austin?"

"You are never wrong when your instincts speak, Roland," said my
father. "Can you say this, Pisistratus, or shall I say it for you?"

"Let him say it himself," said Roland; "and let him judge himself of
the answer. He is young, he is clever, he may make a figure in the
world. Trevanion _may_ answer, 'Win the lady after you have won the
laurel, like the knights of old.' At all events, you will hear the
worst."

"I will go," said I, firmly; and I took my hat, and left the room.
As I was passing the landing-place, a light step stole down the
upper flight of stairs, and a little hand seized my own. I turned
quickly, and met the full, dark, seriously sweet eyes of my cousin
Blanche.

"Don't go away yet, Sisty," said she coaxingly. "I have been waiting
for you, for I heard your voice, and did not like to come in and
disturb you."

"And why did you wait for me, my little Blanche?"

"Why! only to see you. But your eyes are red. Oh, cousin!"--and,
before I was aware of her childish impulse, she had sprung to my
neck and kissed me. Now Blanche was not like most children, and
was very sparing of her caresses. So it was out of the deeps of
a kind heart that that kiss came. I returned it without a word;
and, putting her down gently, ran down the stairs, and was in the
streets. But I had not got far before I heard my father's voice; and
he came up, and, hooking his arm into mine, said, "Are there not
two of us that suffer?--let us be together!" I pressed his arm, and
we walked on in silence. But when we were near Trevanion's house,
I said hesitatingly, "Would it not be better, sir, that I went in
alone. If there is to be an explanation between Mr Trevanion and
myself, would it not seem as if your presence implied either a
request to him that would lower us both, or a doubt of me that--"

"You will go in alone, of course: I will wait for you--"

"Not in the streets--oh no, father," cried I, touched inexpressibly.
For all this was so unlike my father's habits, that I felt remorse
to have so communicated my young griefs to the calm dignity of his
serene life.

"My son, you do not know how I love you. I have only known it myself
lately. Look you, I am living in you now, my first-born; not in my
other son--the great book: I must have my way. Go in; that is the
door, is it not?"

I pressed my father's hand, and I felt then, that, while that hand
could reply to mine, even the loss of Fanny Trevanion could not
leave the world a blank. How much we have before us in life, while
we retain our parents! How much to strive and to hope for! What a
motive in the conquest of our sorrow--that they may not sorrow with
us!


CHAPTER XLI.

I entered Trevanion's study. It was an hour in which he was rarely
at home, but I had not thought of that; and I saw without surprise
that, contrary to his custom, he was in his armchair, reading one of
his favourite classic authors, instead of being in some committee
room of the House of Commons.

"A pretty fellow you are," said he, looking up, "to leave me
all the morning, without rhyme or reason. And my committee is
postponed--chairman ill--people who get ill should not go into the
House of Commons. So here I am, looking into Propertius: Parr is
right; not so elegant a writer as Tibullus. But what the deuce are
you about?--why don't you sit down? Humph! you look grave--you have
something to say,--say it!"

And, putting down Propertius, the acute, sharp face of Trevanion
instantly became earnest and attentive.

"My dear Mr Trevanion," said I, with as much steadiness as I could
assume, "you have been most kind to me; and, out of my own family,
there is no man I love and respect more."

TREVANION.--Humph! What's all this! (_In an under tone_)--Am I going
to be taken in?

PISISTRATUS.--Do not think me ungrateful, then, when I say I come to
resign my office--to leave the house where I have been so happy.

TREVANION.--Leave the house!--Pooh!--I have overtasked you. I
will be more merciful in future. You must forgive a political
economist--it is the fault of my sect to look upon men as machines.

PISISTRATUS--(_smiling faintly_.)--No, indeed--that is not it! I
have nothing to complain of--nothing I could wish altered--could I
stay.

TREVANION (_examining me thoughtfully_.)--And does your father
approve of your leaving me thus?

PISISTRATUS--Yes, fully.

TREVANION (_musing a moment_.)--I see, he would send you to the
University, make you a book-worm like himself: pooh! that will not
do--you will never become wholly a man of books,--it is not in you.
Young man, though I may seem careless, I read characters, when I
please it, pretty quickly. You do wrong to leave me; you are made
for the great world--I can open to you a high career. I wish to do
so! Lady Ellinor wishes it--nay, insists on it--for your father's
sake as well as yours. I never ask a favour from ministers, and I
never will. But (here Trevanion rose suddenly, and, with an erect
mien and a quick gesture of his arm, he added)--but a minister
himself can dispose as he pleases of his patronage. Look you, it
is a secret yet, and I trust to your honour. But, before the year
is out, I must be in the cabinet. Stay with me, I guarantee your
fortunes--three months ago I would not have said that. By-and-by
I will open parliament for you--you are not of age yet--work till
then. And now sit down and write my letters--a sad arrear!"

"My dear, dear Mr Trevanion!" said I, so affected that I could
scarcely speak, and seizing his hand, which I pressed between
both mine--"I dare not thank you--I cannot! But you don't know my
heart--it is not ambition. No! if I could but stay here on the same
terms for ever--_here_--(looking ruefully on that spot where Fanny
had stood the night before,) but it is impossible! If you knew all,
you would be the first to bid me go!"

"You are in debt," said the man of the world, coldly. "Bad, very
bad--still--"

"No, sir; no! worse--"

"Hardly possible to be worse, young man--hardly! But, just as you
will; you leave me, and will not say why. Good-by. Why do you
linger? shake hands, and go!"

"I cannot leave you thus: I--I--sir, the truth shall out. I am rash
and mad enough not to see Miss Trevanion without forgetting that I
am poor, and--"

"Ha!" interrupted Trevanion softly, and growing pale, "this is a
misfortune indeed! And I, who talked of reading characters! Truly,
truly, we would-be practical men are fools--fools! And you have made
love to my daughter!"

"Sir! Mr Trevanion! I--no--never, never so base! In your house,
trusted by you,--how could you think it? I dared, it may be, to
love--at all events, to feel that I could not be insensible to a
temptation too strong for me. But to say it to your daughter--to ask
love in return--I would as soon have broken open your desk! Frankly
I tell you my folly: it is a folly, not a disgrace."

Trevanion came up to me abruptly, as I leant against the book-case,
and, grasping my hand with a cordial kindness, said,--"Pardon me!
You have behaved as your father's son should--I envy him such a son!
Now, listen to me--I cannot give you my daughter--"

"Believe me, sir, I never--"

"Tut, listen! I cannot give you my daughter. I say nothing of
inequality--all gentlemen are equal; and if not, all impertinent
affectation of superiority, in such a case, would come ill from
one who owes his own fortune to his wife! But, as it is, I have a
stake in the world, won not by fortune only, but the labour of a
life, the suppression of half my nature--the drudging, squaring,
taming down--all that made the glory and joy of my youth--to be
that hard matter-of-fact thing which the English world expect in
a--_statesman_! This station has gradually opened into its natural
result--power! I tell you I shall soon have high office in the
administration: I hope to render great services to England--for we
English politicians, whatever the mob and the press say of us, are
not selfish placehunters. I refused office, as high as I look for
now, ten years ago. We believe in our opinions, and we hail the
power that may carry them into effect. In this cabinet I shall have
enemies. Oh, don't think we leave jealousy behind us, at the doors
of Downing Street! I shall be one of a minority. I know well what
must happen: like all men in power, I must strengthen myself by
other heads and hands than my own. My daughter should bring to me
the alliance of that house in England which is most necessary to me.
My life falls to the ground, like a house of cards, if I waste--I
do not say on you, but on men of ten times your fortune (whatever
that be,)--the means of strength which are at my disposal in the
hand of Fanny Trevanion. To this end I have looked; but to this end
her mother has schemed--for these household matters are within a
man's hopes, but belong to a woman's policy. So much for us. But
for you, my dear, and frank, and high-souled young friend--for you,
if I were not Fanny's father--if I were your nearest relation, and
Fanny could be had for the asking, with all her princely dower, (for
it is princely,)--for you I should say, fly from a load upon the
heart, on the genius, the energy, the pride, and the spirit, which
not one man in ten thousand can bear; fly from the curse of owing
every thing to a wife!--it is a reversal of all natural position, it
is a blow to all the manhood within us. You know not what it is: I
do! My wife's fortune came not till after marriage--so far, so well;
it saved my reputation from the charge of fortune-hunting. But, I
tell you fairly, that if it had never come at all, I should be a
prouder, and a greater, and a happier man than I have ever been,
or ever can be, with all its advantages; it has been a millstone
round my neck. And yet Ellinor has never breathed a word that could
wound my pride. Would her daughter be as forbearing? Much as I love
Fanny, I doubt if she has the great heart of her mother. You look
incredulous;--naturally. Oh, you think I shall sacrifice my child's
happiness to a politician's ambition! Folly of youth! Fanny would be
wretched with you. She might not think so now; she would five years
hence! Fanny will make an admirable duchess, countess, great lady;
but wife to a man who owes all to her!--no, no, don't dream it! I
shall not sacrifice her happiness, depend on it. I speak plainly, as
man to man--man of the world to a man just entering it--but still
man to man! What say you?"

"I will think over all you tell me. I know that you are speaking to
me most generously--as a father would. Now let me go, and may God
keep you and yours!"

"Go--I return your blessing--go! I don't insult you now with offers
of service; but, remember, you have a right to command them--in all
ways, in all times. Stop!--take this comfort away with you--a sorry
comfort now, a great one hereafter. In a position that might have
moved anger, scorn, pity, you have made a barren-hearted man honour
and admire you. You, a boy, have made me, with my gray hairs, think
better of the whole world: tell your father that."

I closed the door, and stole out softly--softly. But when I got into
the hall, Fanny suddenly opened the door of the breakfast parlour,
and seemed, by her look, her gesture, to invite me in. Her face was
very pale, and there were traces of tears on the heavy lids.

I stood still a moment, and my heart beat violently. I then muttered
something inarticulately, and, bowing low, hastened to the door.

I thought, but my ears might deceive me, that I heard my name
pronounced; but fortunately the tall porter started from his
newspaper and his leather chair, and the entrance stood open. I
joined my father.

"It is all over," said I, with a resolute smile. "And now, my
dear father, I feel how grateful I should be for all that your
lessons--your life--have, taught me;--for, believe me, I am not
unhappy."


CHAPTER XLII.

We came back to my father's house, and on the stairs we met my
mother, whom Roland's grave looks, and her Austin's strange absence,
had alarmed. My father quietly led the way to a little room, which
my mother had appropriated to Blanche and herself; and then, placing
my hand in that which had helped his own steps from the stony path,
down the quiet vales of life, he said to me,--"Nature gives you here
the soother;"--and, so saying, he left the room.

And it was true, O my mother! that in thy simple loving breast
nature did place the deep wells of comfort! We come to men for
philosophy--to women for consolation. And the thousand weaknesses
and regrets--the sharp sands of the minutiæ that make up
_sorrow_--all these, which I could have betrayed to no _man_--not
even to him, the dearest and tenderest of all men--I showed without
shame to thee! And thy tears, that fell on my cheek, had the balm
of Araby; and my heart, at length, lay lulled and soothed under thy
moist gentle eyes.

I made an effort, and joined the little circle at dinner; and
I felt grateful that no violent attempt was made to raise my
spirits--nothing but affection, more subdued, and soft, and
tranquil. Even little Blanche, as if by the intuition of sympathy,
ceased her babble, and seemed to hush her footstep as she crept
to my side. But after dinner, when we had reassembled in the
drawing-room, and the lights shone bright, and the curtains were
let down--and only the quick roll of some passing wheels reminded
us that there was a world without--my father began to talk. He had
laid aside all his work; the younger, but less perishable child was
forgotten,--and my father began to talk.

"It is," said he musingly, "a well-known thing, that particular
drugs or herbs suit the body according to its particular diseases.
When we are ill, we don't open our medicinechest at random, and take
out any powder or phial that comes to hand. The skilful doctor is he
who adjusts the dose to the malady."

"Of that there can be no doubt," quoth Captain Roland. "I remember
a notable instance of the justice of what you say. When I was in
Spain, both my horse and I fell ill at the same time; a dose was
sent for each; and, by some infernal mistake, I swallowed the
horse's physic, and the horse, poor thing, swallowed mine!"

"And what was the result?" asked my father.

"The horse died!", answered Roland mournfully--"a valuable
beast--bright bay, with a star!"

"And you?"

"Why, the doctor said it ought to have killed me; but it took a
great deal more than a paltry bottle of physic to kill a man in my
regiment."

"Nevertheless, we arrive at the same conclusion," pursued my
father,--"I with my theory, you with your experience,--that the
physic we take must not be chosen hap-hazard; and that a mistake
in the bottle may kill a horse. But when we come to the medicine
for the mind, how little do we think of the golden rule which
common-sense applies to the body."

"Anon," said the Captain, "what medicine is there for the mind?
Shakspeare has said something on that subject, which, if I recollect
right, implies that there is no ministering to a mind diseased."

"I think not, brother; he only said physic (meaning boluses and
black draughts) would not do it. And Shakspeare was the last man
to find fault with his own art; for, verily, he has been a great
physician to the mind."

"Ah! I take you now, brother,--books again! So you think that,
when a man breaks his heart, or loses his fortune, or his
daughter--(Blanche, child, come here)--that you have only to clap
a plaster of print on the sore place, and all is well. I wish you
would find me such a cure."

"Will you try it?"

"If it is not Greek," said my uncle.


CHAPTER XLIII.

MY FATHER'S CROTCHET ON THE HYGEIENIC CHEMISTRY OF BOOKS.

"If," said my father--and here his hand was deep in his
waistcoat--"if we accept the authority of Diodorus, as to the
inscription on the great Egyptian library--and I don't see why
Diodorus should not be as near the mark as any one else?" added my
father interrogatively, turning round.

My mother thought herself the person addressed, and nodded her
gracious assent to the authority of Diodorus. His opinion thus
fortified, my father continued,--"If, I say, we accept the authority
of Diodorus, the inscription on the Egyptian library was--'The
Medicine of the Mind.' Now, that phrase has become notoriously trite
and hackneyed, and people repeat vaguely that books are the medicine
of the mind. Yes; but to apply the medicine is the thing!"

"So you have told us at least twice before, brother," quoth the
Captain, bluffly. "And what Diodorus has to do with it, I know no
more than the man of the moon."

"I shall never get on at this rate," said my father, in a tone
between reproach and entreaty.

"Be good children, Roland and Blanche both," said my mother,
stopping from her work, and holding up her needle threateningly--and
indeed inflicting a slight puncture upon the Captain's shoulder.

"Rem _acu_ tetigisti, my dear," said my father, borrowing Cicero's
pun on the occasion.[13] "And now we shall go upon velvet. I say,
then, that books, taken indiscriminately, are no cure to the
diseases and afflictions of the mind. There is a world of science
necessary in the taking them. I have known some people in great
sorrow fly to a novel, or the last light book in fashion. One
might as well take a rose-draught for the plague! Light reading
does not do when the heart is really heavy. I am told that Goethe,
when he lost his son, took to study a science that was new to
him. Ah! Goethe was a physician who knew what he was about. In a
great grief like that, you cannot tickle and divert the mind; you
must wrench it away, abstract, absorb--bury it in an abyss, hurry
it into a labyrinth. Therefore, for the irremediable sorrows of
middle life and old age, I recommend a strict chronic, course of
science and hard reasoning--Counter-irritation. Bring the brain to
act upon the heart! If science is too much against the grain, (for
we have not all got mathematical heads,) something in the reach
of the humblest understanding, but sufficiently searching to the
highest--a new language--Greek, Arabic, Scandinavian, Chinese, or
Welch! For the loss of fortune, the dose should be applied less
directly to the understanding.--I would administer something elegant
and cordial. For as the heart is crushed and lacerated by a loss in
the affections, so it is rather the head that aches and suffers by
the loss of money. Here we find the higher class of poets a very
valuable remedy. For observe, that poets of the grander and more
comprehensive kind of genius have in them two separate men, quite
distinct from each other--the imaginative man, and the practical,
circumstantial man; and it is the happy mixture of these that suits
diseases of the mind, half imaginative and half practical. There
is Homer, now lost with the gods, now at home with the homeliest,
the very 'poet of circumstance,' as Gray has finely called him; and
yet with imagination enough to seduce and coax the dullest into
forgetting, for a while, that little spot on his desk which his
banker's book can cover. There is Virgil, far below him, indeed.

  [13] Cicero's joke on a senator who was the son of a tailor--"Thou
  hast touched the thing sharply;" (or with a needle--_acu_.)

                    --'Virgil the wise,
    Whose verse walks highest, but not flies.'

as Cowley expresses it. But Virgil still has genius enough to
be two men--to lead you into the fields, not only to listen to
the pastoral reed, and to hear the bees hum, but to note how you
can make the most of the glebe and the vineyard. There is Horace,
charming man of the world, who will condole with you feelingly
on the loss of your fortune, and by no means undervalue the good
things of this life; but who will yet show you that a man may be
happy with a _vile modicum_, or _parva rura_. There is Shakspeare,
who, above all poets, is the mysterious dual of hard sense and
empyreal fancy--and a great many more, whom I need not name; but
who, if you take to them gently and quietly, will not, like your
mere philosopher, your unreasonable stoic, tell you that you have
lost nothing; but who will insensibly steal you out of this world,
with its losses and crosses, and slip you into another world, before
you know where you are!--a world where you are just as welcome,
though you carry no more earth of your lost acres with you than
covers the sole of your shoe. Then, for hypochondria and satiety,
what is better than a brisk alterative course of travels--especially
early, out of the way, marvellous, legendary travels! How they
freshen up the spirits! How they take you out of the humdrum yawning
state you are in. See, with Herodotus, young Greece spring up into
life; or note with him how already the wondrous old Orient world
is crumbling into giant decay; or go with Carpini and Rubruquis to
Tartary, meet 'the carts of Zagathai laden with houses, and think
that a great city is travelling towards you.'[14] Gaze on that
vast wild empire of the Tartar, where the descendants of Jenghis
'multiply and disperse over the immense waste desert, which is as
boundless as the ocean.' Sail with the early northern discoverers,
and penetrate to the heart of winter, among sea-serpents and bears,
and tusked morses, with the faces of men. Then, what think you of
Columbus, and the stern soul of Cortes, and the kingdom of Mexico,
and the strange gold city of the Peruvians, with that audacious
brute Pizarro? and the Polynesians, just for all the world like
the ancient Britons? and the American Indians, and the South-Sea
Islanders? how petulant, and young, and adventurous, and frisky your
hypochondriac must get upon a regimen like that! Then, for that
vice of the mind which I call sectarianism--not in the religious
sense of the word, but little, narrow prejudices, that make you
hate your next-door neighbour, because he has his eggs roasted
when you have yours boiled; and gossiping and prying into people's
affairs, and back-biting, and thinking heaven and earth are coming
together, if some broom touch a cobweb that you have let grow over
the window-sill of your brains--what like a large and generous,
mildly aperient (I beg your pardon, my dear) course of history! How
it clears away all the fumes of the head!--better than the hellebore
with which the old leeches of the middle ages purged the cerebellum.
There, amidst all that great whirl and _sturmbad_ (storm-bath), as
the Germans say, of kingdoms and empires, and races and ages, how
your mind enlarges beyond that little, feverish animosity to John
Styles; or that unfortunate prepossession of yours, that all the
world is interested in your grievances against Tom Stokes and his
wife!

  [14] RUBRUQUIS, sect. xii.

"I can only touch, you see, on a few ingredients in this magnificent
pharmacy--its resources are boundless, but require the nicest
discretion. I remember to have cured a disconsolate widower, who
obstinately refused every other medicament, by a strict course of
geology. I dipped him deep into gneiss and mica schist. Amidst the
first strata, I suffered the watery action to expend itself upon
cooling crystallised masses; and, by the time I had got him into
the tertiary period, amongst the transition chalks of Maestricht,
and the conchiferous marls of Gosau, he was ready for a new wife.
Kitty, my dear! it is no laughing matter. I made no less notable
a cure of a young scholar at Cambridge, who was meant for the
church, when he suddenly caught a cold fit of freethinking, with
great shiverings, from wading over his depth in Spinosa. None of
the divines, whom I first tried, did him the least good in that
state; so I turned over a new leaf, and doctored him gently upon the
chapters of faith in Abraham Tucker's book, (you should read, it,
Sisty;) then I threw in strong doses of Fichté; after that I put him
on the Scotch metaphysicians, with plunge baths into certain German
transcendentalists; and having convinced him that faith is not an
unphilosophical state of mind, and that he might believe without
compromising his understanding--for he was mightily conceited on
that score--I threw in my divines, which he was now fit to digest;
and his theological constitution, since then, has become so robust,
that he has eaten up two livings and a deanery! In fact, I have
a plan for a library that, instead of heading its compartments,
'Philology, Natural Science, Poetry,' &c., one shall head them
according to the diseases for which they are severally good, bodily
and mental--up from a dire calamity, or the pangs of the gout, down
to a fit of the spleen, or a slight catarrh; for which last your
light reading comes in with a whey posset and barley-water. But,"
continued my father more gravely, "when some one sorrow, that is
yet reparable, gets hold of your mind like a monomania--when you
think, because heaven has denied you this or that, on which you had
set your heart, that all your life must be a blank--oh, then diet
yourself well on biography--the biography of good and great men.
See how little a space one sorrow really makes in life. See scarce
a page, perhaps, given to some grief similar to your own; and how
triumphantly the life sails on, beyond it! You thought the wing was
broken!--Tut-tut--it was but a bruised feather! See what life leaves
behind it, when all is, done!--a summary of positive facts far out
of the region of sorrow and suffering, linking themselves with the
being of the world. Yes, biography is the medicine here! Roland, you
said you would try my prescription--here it is,"--and my father took
up a book, and reached it to the Captain.

My uncle looked over it--_Life of the Reverend Robert Hall_.
"Brother, he was a Dissenter, and, thank heaven, I am a
church-and-state man, back and bone!"

"Robert Hall was a brave man, and a true soldier under the great
commander," said my father artfully.

The Captain mechanically carried his forefinger to his forehead in
military fashion, and saluted the book respectfully.

"I have another copy for you, Pisistratus--that is mine which I have
lent Roland. This, which I bought for you to-day, you will keep."

"Thank you, sir," said I listlessly, not seeing what great good the
_Life of Robert Hall_ could do me, or why the same medicine should
suit the old weatherbeaten uncle, and the nephew yet in his teens.

"I have said nothing," resumed my father, slightly bowing his broad
temples, "of the Book of Books, for that is the _lignum vitæ_, the
cardinal medicine for all. These are but the subsidiaries: for,
as you may remember, my dear Kitty, that I have said before--we
can never keep the system quite right unless we place just in the
centre of the great ganglionic system, whence the nerves carry its
influence gently and smoothly through the whole frame--THE SAFFRON
BAG!"


CHAPTER XLIV.

After breakfast the next morning, I took my hat to go out, when my
father, looking at me, and seeing by my countenance that I had not
slept, said gently--

"My dear Pisistratus, you have not tried my medicine yet."

"What medicine, sir?"

"Robert Hall."

"No, indeed, not yet," said I, smiling.

"Do so, my son, before you go out; depend on it, you will enjoy your
walk more."

I confess that it was, with some reluctance I obeyed. I went back to
my own room, and sate resolutely down to my task. Are there any of
you, my readers, who have not read the _Life of Robert Hall_? If so,
in the words of the great Captain Cuttle, "When found, make a note
of it." Never mind what your theological opinion is--Episcopalian,
Presbyterian, Baptist, Pædobaptist, Independent, Quaker, Unitarian,
Philosopher, Freethinker--send for Robert Hall! Yea, if there exist
yet on earth descendants of the arch-heresies, which made such a
noise in their day--men who believe with Saturnians that the world
was made by seven angels; or with Basilides, that there are as many
heavens as there are days in the year; or with the Nicolaitanes,
that men ought to have their wives in common, (plenty of that sect
still, especially in the Red Republic;) or with their successors,
the Gnostics, who believed in Jaldaboath; or with the Carpacratians,
that the world was made by the devil; or with the Cerinthians, and
Ebionites, and Nazarites, (which last discovered that the name of
Noah's wife was Ouria, and that she set the ark on fire;) or with
the Valentinians, who taught that there were thirty Æones, ages, or
worlds, born out of Profundity, (Bathos,) male, and Silence, female;
or with the Marcites, Colarbasii, and Heracleonites, (who still
kept up that bother about Æones, Mr Profundity, and Mrs Silence;)
or with the Ophites, who are said to have worshipped the serpent;
or the Cainites, who ingeniously found out a reason for honouring
Judas, because he foresaw what good would come to men by betraying
our Saviour; or with the Sethites, who made Seth a part of the
Divine substance; or with the Archonticks, Ascothyptæ, Cerdonians,
Marcionites, the disciples of Apelles, and Severus, (the last was
a teetotaller, and said wine was begot by Satan!) or of Tatian,
who thought all the descendants of Adam were irretrievably damned
except themselves, (some of those Tatiani are certainly extant!) or
the Cataphrygians, who were also called Tascodragitæ, because they
thrust their forefingers up their nostrils to show their devotion;
or the Pepuzians, Quintilians, and Artotyrites; or--but no matter.
If I go through all the follies of men in search of the truth, I
shall never get to the end of my chapter, or back to Robert Hall:
whatever, then, thou art, orthodox or heterodox, send for the _Life
of Robert Hall_. It is the life of a man that it does good to
manhood itself to contemplate.

I had finished the biography, which is not long, and was musing over
it, when I heard the Captain's cork-leg upon the stairs. I opened
the door for him, and he entered, book in hand, as I, also book in
hand, stood ready to receive him.

"Well, sir," said Roland, seating himself, "has the prescription
done you any good?"

"Yes, uncle--great."

"And me too. By Jupiter, Sisty, that same Hall was a fine fellow! I
wonder if the medicine has gone through the same channels in both?
Tell me, first, how it has affected you."

"_Imprimis_, then, my dear uncle, I fancy that a book like this must
do good to all who live in the world in the ordinary manner, by
admitting us into a circle of life of which I suspect we think but
little. Here is a man connecting himself directly with a heavenly
purpose, and cultivating considerable faculties to that one end;
seeking to accomplish his soul as far as he can, that he may do
most good on earth, and take a higher existence up to heaven; a man
intent upon a sublime and spiritual duty: in short, living as it
were in it, and so filled with the consciousness of immortality,
and so strong in the link between God and man, that, without any
affected stoicism, without being insensible to pain--rather,
perhaps, from a nervous temperament, acutely feeling it--he yet
has a happiness wholly independent of it. It is impossible not to
be thrilled with an admiration that elevates while it awes you, in
reading that solemn 'Dedication of himself to God.' This offering of
'soul and body, time, health, reputation, talents,' to the divine
and invisible Principle of Good, calls us suddenly to contemplate
the selfishness of our own views and hopes, and awakens us from the
egotism that exacts all and resigns nothing.

"But this book has mostly struck upon the chord in my own heart,
in that characteristic which my father indicated as belonging to
all biography. Here is a life of remarkable _fulness_, great study,
great thought, and great action; and yet," said I, colouring,
"how small a place those feelings, which have tyrannised over me,
and made all else seem blank and void, hold in that life. It is
not as if the man were a cold and hard ascetic; it is easy to see
in him not only remarkable tenderness and warm affections, but
strong self-will, and the passion of all vigorous natures. Yes, I
understand better now what existence in a true man should be."

"All that is very well said," quoth the Captain, "but it did not
strike me. What I have seen in this book is courage. Here is a
poor creature rolling on the carpet with agony; from childhood to
death tortured by a mysterious incurable malady--a malady that is
described as 'an internal apparatus of torture;' and who does, by
his heroism, more than _bear_ it--he puts it out of power to affect
him; and though (here is the passage) 'his appointment by day and by
night was incessant pain, yet high enjoyment was, notwithstanding,
the law of his existence.' Robert Hall reads me a lesson--me, an old
soldier, who thought myself above taking lessons--in courage, at
least. And, as I came to that passage when, in the sharp paroxysms
before death, he says, 'I have not complained, have I, sir?--and
I won't complain,'--when I came to that passage I started up, and
cried, 'Roland de Caxton, thou hast been a coward! and, an thou
hadst had thy deserts, thou hadst been cashiered, broken, and
drummed out of the regiment long ago!"

"After all, then, my father was not so wrong--he placed his guns
right, and fired a good shot."

"He must have been from 6° to 9° above the crest of the parapet,"
said my uncle, thoughtfully--"which, I take it, is the best
elevation, both for shot and shells, in enfilading a work."

"What say you, then, Captain? up with our knapsacks, and on with the
march!"

"Right about--face!" cried my uncle, as erect as a column.

"No looking back, if we can help it."

"Full in the front of the enemy--'Up, guards, and at 'em!'"

"'England expects every man to do his duty!"'

"Cypress or laurel!" cried my uncle, waving the book over his head.


CHAPTER XLV.

I went out--and to see Francis Vivian; for, on leaving Mr Trevanion,
I was not without anxiety for my new friend's future provision.
But Vivian was from home, and I strolled from his lodgings, into
the suburbs on the other side of the river, and began to meditate
seriously on the best course now to pursue. In quitting my present
occupations, I resigned prospects far more brilliant, and fortunes
far more rapid than I could ever hope to realise in any other
entrance into life. But I felt the necessity, if I desired to keep
steadfast to that more healthful frame of mind I had obtained,
of some manly and continuous labour--some earnest employment.
My thoughts flew back to the university; and the quiet of its
cloisters--which, until I had been blinded by the glare of the
London world, and grief had somewhat dulled the edge of my quick
desires and hopes, had seemed to me cheerless and unaltering--took
an inviting aspect. They presented what I needed most--a new scene,
a new arena, a partial return into boyhood; repose for passions
prematurely raised; activity for the reasoning powers in fresh
directions. I had not lost my time in London: I had kept up, if not
studies purely classical, at least the habits of application; I had
sharpened my general comprehension, and augmented my resources.
Accordingly, when I returned home, I resolved to speak to my father.
But I found he had forestalled me; and, on entering, my mother drew
me up stairs into her room, with a smile kindled by my smile, and
told me that she and her Austin had been thinking that it was best
that I should leave London as soon as possible; that my father
found he could now dispense with the library of the Museum for some
months; that the time for which they had taken their lodgings would
be up in a few days; that the summer was far advanced, town odious,
the country beautiful--in a word, we were to go home. There I could
prepare myself for Cambridge, till the long vacation was over; and,
my mother added hesitatingly, and with a prefatory caution to
spare my health, that my father, whose income could ill afford the
requisite allowance to me, counted on my soon lightening his burden,
by getting a scholarship. I felt how much provident kindness there
was in all this--even in that hint of a scholarship, which was meant
to rouse my faculties, and spur me, by affectionate incentives, to a
new ambition. I was not less delighted than grateful.

"But poor Roland," said I, "and little Blanche--will they come with
us?"

"I fear not," said my mother, "for Roland is anxious to get back to
his tower; and, in a day or two, he will be well enough to move."

"Do you not think, my dear mother, that, somehow or other, this lost
son of his had something to do with his illness,--that the illness
was as much mental as physical?"

"I have no doubt of it, Sisty. What a sad, bad heart that young man
must have!"

"My uncle seems to have abandoned all hope of finding him in London;
otherwise, ill as he has been, I am sure we could not have kept him
at home. So he goes back to the old tower. Poor man, he must be dull
enough there!--we must contrive to pay him a visit. Does Blanche
ever speak of her brother?"

"No, for it seems they were not brought up much together--at all
events, she does not remember him. How lovely she is! Her mother
must surely have been very handsome."

"She is a pretty child, certainly, though in a strange style of
beauty--such immense eyes!--and affectionate, and loves Roland as
she ought."

And here the conversation dropped.

Our plans being thus decided, it was necessary that I should lose no
time in seeing Vivian, and making some arrangement for the future.
His manner had lost so much of its abruptness, that I thought I
could venture to recommend him personally to Trevanion; and I knew,
after what had passed, that Trevanion would make a point to oblige
me. I resolved to consult my father about it. As yet I had either
never forced, or never made the opportunity to talk to my father
on the subject, he had been so occupied; and, if he had proposed
to see my new friend, what answer could I have made, in the teeth
of Vivian's cynic objections? However, as we were now going away,
that last consideration ceased to be of importance; and, for the
first, the student had not yet entirely settled back to his books. I
therefore watched the time when my father walked down to the Museum,
and, slipping my arm in his, I told him, briefly and rapidly, as
we went along, how I had formed this strange acquaintance, and how
I was now situated. The story did not interest my father quite as
much as I expected, and he did not understand all the complexities
of Vivian's character--how could he?--for he answered briefly, "I
should think that, for a young man, apparently without a sixpence,
and whose education seems so imperfect, any resource in Trevanion
must be most temporary and uncertain. Speak to your uncle Jack--he
can find him some place, I have no doubt--perhaps a readership in
a printer's office, or a reporter's place on some journal, if he
is fit for it. But if you want to steady him, let it be something
regular."

Therewith my father dismissed the matter, and vanished through the
gates of the Museum.--Readership to a printer, reportership on a
journal, for a young gentleman with the high notions and arrogant
vanity of Francis Vivian--his ambition already soaring far beyond
kid gloves and a cabriolet! The idea was hopeless; and, perplexed
and doubtful, I took my way to Vivian's lodgings. I found him at
home, and unemployed, standing by his window, with folded arms, and
in a state of such reverie that he was not aware of my entrance till
I had touched him on the shoulder.

"Ha!" said he then, with one of his short, quick, impatient sighs,
"I thought you had given me up, and forgotten me--but you look pale
and harassed. I could almost think you had grown thinner within the
last few days."

"Oh! never mind me, Vivian: I have come to speak of yourself.
I have left Trevanion; it is settled that I should go to the
university--and we all quit town in a few days."

"In a few days!--all!--who are all?"

"My family--father, mother, uncle cousin, and myself. But, my dear
fellow, now let us think seriously what is best to be done for you?
I can present you to Trevanion."

"Ha!"

"But Trevanion is a hard, though an excellent man; and, moreover, as
he is always changing the subjects that engross him, in a month or
so, he may have nothing to give you. You said you would work--will
you consent not to complain if the work cannot be done in kid
gloves? Young men who have risen high in the world have begun, it
is well known, as reporters to the press. It is a situation of
respectability, and in request, and not easy to obtain, I fancy; but
still--"

Vivian interrupted me hastily--

"Thank you a thousand times! but what you say confirms a resolution
I had taken before you came. I shall make it up with my family, and
return home."

"Oh! I am so really glad. How wise in you!"

Vivian turned away his head abruptly--

"Your pictures of family life and domestic peace, you see," he said,
"seduced me more than you thought. When do you leave town?"

"Why, I believe, early next week."

"So soon!" said Vivian, thoughtfully. "Well, perhaps I may ask you
yet to introduce me to Mr Trevanion; for--who knows?--my family and
I may fall out again. But I will consider. I think I have heard you
say that this Trevanion is a very old friend of your father's, or
uncle's?"

"He, or rather Lady Ellinor, is an old friend of both."

"And therefore would listen to your recommendations of me. But
perhaps I may not need them. So you have left--left of your own
accord--a situation that seemed more enjoyable, I should think, than
rooms in a college;--left--why did you leave?"

And Vivian fixed his bright eyes, full and piercingly, on mine.

"It was only for a time, for a trial, that I was there," said I,
evasively: "out at nurse, as it were, till the Alma Mater opened her
arms--_alma_ indeed she ought to be to my father's son."

Vivian looked unsatisfied with my explanation, but did not question
me farther. He himself was the first to turn the conversation, and
he did this with more affectionate cordiality than was common to
him. He inquired into our general plans, into the probabilities of
our return to town, and drew from me a description of our rural
Tusculum. He was quiet and subdued; and once or twice I thought
there was a moisture in those luminous eyes. We parted with more
of the unreserve and fondness of youthful friendship--at least on
my part, and seemingly on his--than had yet endeared our singular
intimacy; for the cement of cordial attachment had been wanting to
an intercourse in which one party refused all confidence, and the
other mingled distrust and fear with keen interest and compassionate
admiration.

That evening, before lights were brought in, my father, turning to
me, abruptly asked if I had seen my friend, and what he was about to
do?

"He thinks of returning to his family," said I.

Roland, who had seemed dozing, winced uneasily.

"Who returns to his family?" asked the Captain.

"Why, you must know," said my father, "that Sisty has fished up
a friend of whom he can give no account that would satisfy a
policeman, and whose fortunes he thinks himself under the necessity
of protecting. You are very lucky that he has not picked your
pockets, Sisty; but I daresay he has? What's his name?"

"Vivian," said I--"Francis Vivian."

"A good name, and a Cornish," said my father. "Some derive it from
the Romans--Vivianus; others from a Celtic word, which means"--

"Vivian!" interrupted Roland--"Vivian!--I wonder if it be the son of
Colonel Vivian?"

"He is certainly a gentleman's son," said I; "but he never told me
what his family and connexions were."

"Vivian," repeated my uncle--"poor Colonel Vivian. So the young man
is going to his father. I have no doubt it is the same. Ah!"--

"What do you know of Colonel Vivian, or his son?" said I. "Pray,
tell me, I am so interested in this young man."

"I know nothing of either, except by gossip," said my uncle,
moodily. "I did hear that Colonel Vivian, an excellent officer,
and honourable man, had been in--in--(Roland's voice faltered)--in
great grief about his son, whom, a mere boy, he had prevented from
some improper marriage, and who had run away and left him--it was
supposed for America. The story affected me at the time," added my
uncle, trying to speak calmly.

We were all silent, for we felt why Roland was so disturbed, and why
Colonel Vivian's grief should have touched him home. Similarity in
affliction makes us brothers even to the unknown.

"You say he is going home to his family--I am heartily glad of it!"
said the envying old soldier, gallantly.

The lights came in then, and, two minutes after, uncle Roland and I
were nestled close to each other, side by side; and I was reading
over his shoulder, and his finger was silently resting on that
passage that had so struck him--"I have not complained--have I,
sir?--and I won't complain!"



THE WHITE NILE.[15]

  [15] _Expedition zur Entdeckung der Quellen des Weissen Nil_,
  (1840-1841,) von FERDINAND WERNE. Mit einem Vorwort von CARL RITTER.
  Berlin, 1848.


Fifty years since, the book before us would have earned for its
author the sneers of critics and the reputation of a Munchausen:
at the present more tolerant and more enlightened day, it not only
obtains credit, but excites well-merited admiration of the writer's
enterprise, energy, and perseverance. "The rich contents and great
originality of the following work," says Professor Carl Ritter,
in his preface to Mr Werne's narrative, "will escape no one who
bestows a glance, however hasty, upon its pages. It gives vivid and
life-like pictures of tribes and territories previously unvisited,
and is welcome as a most acceptable addition to our literature of
travel, often so monotonous." We quite coincide with the learned
professor, whose laudatory and long-winded sentences we have thus
freely rendered. His friend, Mr Ferdinand Werne, has made good
use of his opportunities, and has produced a very interesting and
praiseworthy book.

It is, perhaps, hardly necessary to remind the reader, that the
river Nile is formed of two confluent streams, the Blue and the
White, whose junction is in South Nubia, between 15° and 16° of
North Latitude. The source of the Blue Nile was ascertained by
Bruce, and by subsequent travellers, to be in the mountains of
Abyssinia; but the course of the other branch, which is by far the
longest, had been followed, until very lately, only as far south
as 10° or 11° N. L. Even now the river has not been traced to its
origin, although Mr Werne and his companions penetrated to 4° N.
L. Further they could not go, owing to the rapid subsidence of the
waters. The expedition had been delayed six weeks by the culpable
dilatoriness of one of its members; and this was fatal to the
realisation of its object.

We can conceive few things more exciting than such a voyage as Mr
Werne has accomplished and recorded. Starting from the outposts of
civilisation, he sailed into the very heart of Africa, up a stream
whose upper waters were then for the first time furrowed by vessels
larger than a savage's canoe--a stream of such gigantic proportions,
that its width, at a thousand miles from the sea, gave it the
aspect of a lake rather than of a river. The brute creation were in
proportion with the magnitude of the water-course. The hippopotamus
reared his huge snout above the surface, and wallowed in the gullies
that on either hand run down to the stream; enormous crocodiles
gaped along the shore; elephants played in herds upon the pastures;
the tall giraffe amongst the lofty palms; snakes thick as trees lay
coiled in the slimy swamps; and ant-hills, ten feet high, towered
above the rushes. Along the thickly-peopled banks hordes of savages
showed themselves, gazing in wonder at the strange ships, and making
ambiguous gestures, variously construed by the adventurers as
signs of friendship or hostility. Alternately sailing and towing,
as the wind served or not; constantly in sight of natives, but
rarely communicating with them; often cut off for days from land by
interminable fields of tangled weeds,--the expedition pursued its
course through innumerable perils, guaranteed from most of them by
the liquid rampart on which it floated. Lions looked hungry, and
savages shook their spears, but neither showed a disposition to swim
off and board the flotilla.

The cause of science has countless obligations to the cupidity of
potentates and adventurers. May it not be part of the scheme of
Providence, that gold is placed in the most remote and barbarous
regions, as a magnet to draw thither the children of civilisation?
The expedition shared in by Mr Werne is an argument in favour
of the hypothesis. It originated in appetite for lucre, not in
thirst for knowledge. Mehemet Ali, viceroy of Egypt, finding the
lands within his control unable to meet his lavish expenditure and
constant cry for gold, projected working mines supposed to exist
in the districts of Kordovan and Fazogl. At heavy cost he procured
Austrian miners from Trieste, a portion of whom proceeded in 1836
to the land of promise, to open those veins of gold whence it was
reported the old Venetian ducats had been extracted. Already, in
imagination, the viceroy beheld an ingot-laden fleet sailing merrily
down the Nile. He was disappointed in his glowing expectations.
Russegger, the German chief of the expedition, pocketed the pay of
a Bey, ate and drank in conformity with his rank, rambled about the
country, and wrote a book for the amusement and Information of his
countrymen. Then he demanded thirty thousand dollars to begin the
works. An Italian, who had accompanied him, offered to do it for
less; mistrust and disputes arose, and at last their employer would
rely on neither of them, but resolved to go and see for himself.
This was in the autumn of 1838; and it might well be that the old
fox was not sorry to get out of the way of certain diplomatic
personages at Alexandria, and thus to postpone for a while his reply
to troublesome inquiries and demands.

"It was on the 15th October 1838," Mr Werne says, "that I--for some
time past an anchorite in the wilderness by Tura, and just returned
from a hunt in the ruins of Memphis--saw, from the left shore of
the Nile, the Abu Dagn, (Father of the Beard,) as Mohammed Ali was
designated to me by a Fellah standing by, steam past in his yacht,
in the direction of those regions to which I would then so gladly
have proceeded. Already in Alexandria I had gathered, over a glass
of wine, from frigate-captain Achmet, (a Swiss, named Baumgartner,)
the secret plan of the expedition to the White Stream, (Bach'r el
Abiat,) and I had made every effort to obtain leave to join it,
but in vain, because, as a Christian, my discretion was not to be
depended upon."

The Swiss, whom some odd caprice of fate, here unexplained, had
converted into an Egyptian naval captain, and to whom the scientific
duties of the expedition were confided, died in the following
spring, and his place was taken by Captain Selim. Mr Werne and his
brother, who had long ardently desired to accompany one of these
expeditions up the Nile, were greatly discouraged at this change,
which they looked upon as destructive to their hopes. At the town
of Chartum, at the confluence of the White and Blue streams, they
witnessed, in the month of November 1839, the departure of the first
flotilla; and, although sick and weak, from the effects of the
climate, their hearts were wrung with regret at being left behind.
This expedition got no further than 6° 35' N. L.; although, either
from mistakes in their astronomical reckoning or wishing to give
themselves more importance, and not anticipating that others would
soon follow to check their statements, they pretended to have gone
three degrees further south. But Mehemet Ali, not satisfied with the
result of their voyage, immediately ordered a second expedition to
be fitted out. Mr Werne, who is a most adventurous person, had been
for several months in the Taka country, in a district previously
untrodden by Europeans, with an army commanded by Achmet Bascha,
governor-general of Sudan, who was operating against some rebellious
tribes. Here news reached him of the projected expedition; and, to
his great joy, he obtained from Achmet permission to accompany it in
the quality of passenger. His brother, then body-physician to the
Bascha, could not be spared, by reason of the great mortality in the
camp.

At Chartum the waters were high, the wind was favourable, and all
was ready for a start early in October, but for the non-appearance
of two French engineers, who lingered six weeks in Korusko, under
one pretext or other, but in reality, M. Werne affirms, because
one of them, Arnaud by name, who has since written an account of
the expedition, was desirous to prolong the receipt of his pay
as _bimbaschi_, or major, which rank he temporarily held in the
Egyptian service. At last he and his companion, Sabatier, arrived:
on the 23rd November 1840 a start was made; and, on that day Mr
Werne began a journal, regularly kept, and most minute in its
details, which he continued till the 22d April 1841, the date of
his return to Chartum. He commences by stating the composition
of the expedition. "It consists of four dahabies from Kahira,
(vessels with two masts and with cabins, about a hundred feet
long, and twelve to fifteen broad,) each with two cannon; three
dahabies from Chartum, one of which has also two guns; then two
kaias, one-masted vessels, to carry goods, and a sàndal, or skiff,
for intercommunication; the crews are composed of two hundred and
fifty soldiers, (Negroes, Egyptians, and Surians,) and a hundred
and twenty sailors and boatmen from Alexandria, Nubia, and the
land of Sudàn." Soliman Kaschef (a Circassian of considerable
energy and courage, who, like Mr Werne himself, was protected by
Achmet Bascha) commanded the troops. Captain Selim had charge of
the ships, and a sort of general direction of the expedition, of
which, however, Soliman was the virtual chief; the second captain
was Feizulla Effendi of Constantinople; the other officers were
two Kurds, a Russian, an Albanian, and a Persian. Of Europeans,
there were the two Frenchmen, already mentioned, as engineers; a
third, named Thibaut, as collector; and Mr Werne, as an independent
passenger at his own charges. The ships were to follow each other
in two lines, one led by Soliman, the other by Selim; but this
order of sailing was abandoned the very first day; and so, indeed,
was nearly all order of every kind. Each man sailed his bark as he
pleased, without nautical skill or unity of movement; and, as to
one general and energetic supervision of the whole flotilla and
its progress, no one dreamed of such a thing. Mr Werne indulged in
gloomy reflections as to the probable results of an enterprise, at
whose very outset such want of zeal and discipline was displayed.
It does not appear to have struck him that not the least of his
dangers upon the strange voyage he had so eagerly undertaken, was
from his shipmates, many of them bigoted Mahometans and reckless,
ferocious fellows, ready with the knife, and who would have thought
little of burthening their conscience with so small a matter as a
Christian's blood. He is evidently a cool, courageous man, prompt
in action; and his knowledge of the slavish, treacherous character
of the people he had to deal with, doubtless taught him the best
line of conduct to pursue with them. This, as appears from various
passages of his journal, was the rough and ready style--a blow
for the slightest impertinence, and his arms, which he well knew
how to use, always at hand. He did not scruple to interfere when
he saw cruelty or oppression practised, and soon he made himself
respected, if not feared, by all on board; so much so, that
Feizulla, the captain of the vessel in which he sailed, a drunken
old Turk, who passed his time in drinking spirits and mending his
own clothes, appointed him his _locum tenens_ during his occasional
absences on shore. During his five months' voyage, Mr Werne had
a fine opportunity of studying the peculiarities of the different
nations with individuals of which he sailed; and, although his long
residence in Africa and the East had made him regard such matters
with comparative indifference, the occasional glimpses he gives
of Turkish and Egyptian habits are amongst the most interesting
passages in his book. Already, on the third day of the voyage, the
expiration of the Rhamadan, or fasting month, and the setting in
of the little feast of Bairam, gave rise to a singular scene. The
flotilla was passing through the country governed by Achmet Bascha,
in which Soliman was a man of great importance. By his desire, a
herd of oxen and a large flock of sheep were driven down to the
shore, for the use of the expedition. The preference was for the
mutton, the beef in those regions being usually tough and coarse,
and consequently despised by the Turks. "This quality of the meat
is owing to the nature of the fodder, the tender grass and herbs of
our marsh-lands and pastures being here unknown--and to the climate,
which hardens the animal texture, a fact perceived by the surgeon
when operating upon the human body. Our Arabs, who, like the Greeks
and Jews, born butchers and flayers, know no mercy with beasts or
men, fell upon the unfortunate animals, hamstrung them in all haste,
to obviate any chance of resumption of the gift, and the hecatomb
sank upon the ground, pitiful to behold. During the flaying and
quartering, every man tried to secrete a sippet of meat, cutting it
off by stealth, or stealing it from the back of the bearers. These
coveted morsels were stuck upon skewers, broiled at the nearest
watch-fire, and ravenously devoured, to prepare the stomach for
the approaching banquet. Although they know how to cook the liver
excellently well, upon this occasion they preferred eating it raw,
cut up in a wooden dish, and with the gall of the slaughtered beast
poured over it. Thus prepared, and eaten with salt and pepper, it
has much the flavour of a good raw beefsteak." The celebration of
the Bairam was a scene of gluttony and gross revelry. Arrack was
served out instead of the customary ration of coffee; and many a
Mussulman drank more than did him good, or than the Prophet's law
allows. In the night, Captain Feizulla tumbled out of bed; and,
having spoiled his subordinates by over-indulgence, not one of
them stirred to his assistance. Mr Werne picked him up, found him
in an epileptic fit, and learned, with no great pleasure, Feizulla
being his cabin-mate, that the thirsty skipper was subject to such
attacks. He foresaw a comfortless voyage on board the narrow bark,
and with such queer companions; but the daily increasing interest of
the scenery and surrounding objects again distracted his thoughts
from considerations of personal ease. He had greater difficulty
in reconciling himself to the negligence and indolence of his
associates. So long as food was abundant and work scanty, all went
well enough; but when liquor ran low, and the flesh-pots of Egypt
were empty, grumbling began, and the thoughts of the majority were
fixed upon a speedy return. Their chiefs set them a poor example.
Soliman Kaschef lay in bed till an hour after sunrise, and the
signal to sail could not be given till he awoke; and Feizulla, when
his and Mr Werne's stock of brandy was out, passed one half his
time in distilling spirits from stale dates, and the other moiety
in getting intoxicated on the turbid extract thus obtained. Then
the officers had female slaves on board; and there was a licensed
jester, Abu Haschis, who supplied the expedition with buffoonery
and ribaldry; and the most odious practices prevailed amongst the
crews; for further details concerning all which matters we refer the
curious to Mr Werne himself. A more singularly composed expedition
was perhaps never fitted out, nor one less adapted effectually to
perform the services required of it. Cleanliness and sobriety, so
incumbent upon men cooped up in small craft, in a climate teeming
with pestilence and vermin, were little regarded; and subordination
and vigilance, essential to safety amidst the perils of an unknown
navigation, and in the close vicinity of hostile savages, were
utterly neglected,--at first to the great uneasiness of Mr Werne.
But after a while, seeing no chance of amendment, and having no
power to rebuke or correct deficiencies, he repeated the eternal
_Allah Kerim!_ (God is merciful) of his fatalist shipmates, and
slept soundly, when the musquitos permitted, under the good guard of
Providence.

On the 29th November, the expedition passed the limit of
Turco-Egyptian domination. The land it had now reached paid no
tribute. "All slaves," was the reply of Turks and Arabs to Mr
Werne's inquiry who the inhabitants were. "I could not help
laughing, and proving to them, to their great vexation, that these
men were free, and much less slaves than themselves; that before
making slaves of them, they must first make them prisoners, a
process for which they had no particular fancy,--admitting, with
much _naiveté_, that the 'slaves' hereabout were both numerous
and brave. This contemptuously spoken _Kulo Abit_, (All slaves,)
is about equivalent to the 'barbarian' of the ancients--the same
classical word the modern Greeks have learned out of foreign
school-books."

"The trees and branches preventing our vessels from lying alongside
the bank, I had myself carried through the water, to examine the
country and get some shooting. But I could not make up my mind to
use my gun, the only animals to aim at being large, long-tailed,
silver-gray apes. I had shot one on a former occasion, and the brute
had greatly excited my compassion by his resemblance to a human
being, and by his piteous gestures. M. Arnaud, on the contrary, took
particular pleasure in making the repeated observation that, on the
approach of death, the gums of these beasts turn white, like those
of a dying man. They live in families of several hundreds together,
and their territory is very circumscribed, even in the forest, as
I myself subsequently ascertained. Although fearful of water, and
swimming unwillingly, they always fled to the branches overhanging
the river, and not unfrequently fell in. When this occurred, their
first care on emerging was to wipe the water from their faces and
ears. However imminent their danger, only when this operation was
completed did they again climb the trees. Such a monkey republic
is really a droll enough sight; its members alternately fighting
and caressing each other, combing and vermin-hunting, stealing and
boxing each other's ears, and, in the midst of all these important
occupations, running down every moment to drink, but contenting
themselves with a single draught, for fear of becoming a mouthful
for the watchful crocodile. The tame monkeys on board our vessels
turned restless at sight of the joyous vagabond life of their
brethren in the bush. First-lieutenant Hussein Aga, of Kurdistan,
lay alongside us, and was in raptures with his monkey, shouting over
to me: '_Schuf! el naùti taïb!_' (See! the clever sailor!)--meaning
his pet ape, which ran about the rigging like mad, hanging on by
the ropes, and looking over the bulwarks into the water; until at
last he jumped on the back of a sailor who was wading on shore with
dirty linen to wash, and thence made a spring upon land to visit
his relations, compared to whom, however, he was a mere dwarf.
Overboard went the long Kurd, with his gun, to shoot the deserter;
but doubtless the little seaman, in his capacity of Turkish slave,
and on account of his diminutive figure, met a bad reception, for
Hussein was no sooner under the trees than his monkey dropped upon
his head. He came to visit me afterwards, brought his 'naùti taïb'
with him, and told me, what I had often heard before, how apes were
formerly men, whom God had cursed. It really is written in the Koran
that God and the prophet David had turned into monkeys the Jews who
did not keep the Sabbath holy. Therefore a good Moslem will seldom
kill or injure a monkey. Emin Bey of Fazogl was an exception to this
rule. Sitting at table with an Italian, and about to thrust into
his mouth a fragment of roast meat, his monkey snatched it from
between his thumb and fingers. Whereupon the Bey quietly ordered
the robber's hand to be cut off, which was instantly done. The poor
monkey came to his cruel master and showed him, with his peculiarly
doleful whine, the stump of his fore-paw. The Bey gave orders to
kill him, but the Italian begged him as a gift. Soon afterwards
the foolish brute came into my possession, and, on my journey back
to Egypt, contributed almost as much to cheer me, as did the filial
attentions of my freed man Hagar, whom my brother had received as a
present, and had bequeathed to me. My servants would not believe but
that the monkey was a transformed _gabir_, or caravan guide, since
even in the desert he was always in front and upon the right road,
availing himself of every rock and hillock to look about him, until
the birds of prey again drove him under the camels, to complain
to me with his 'Oehm-oehm;' which was also his custom when he had
been beaten in my absence by the servants, whose merissa (a sort of
spirit) he would steal and drink till he could neither go nor stand."

During this halt, and whilst rambling along the bank, picking up
river-oysters and tracing the monstrous footsteps of hippopotami,
Mr Werne nearly walked into the jaws of the largest crocodile he
had ever seen. His Turkish servant, Sale, who attended him on such
occasions and carried his rifle, was not at hand, and he was glad
to beat a retreat, discharging one of his barrels, both of which
were laden with shot only, in the monster's face. On being scolded
for his absence, Sale very coolly replied, that it was not safe so
near shore; for that several times it had occurred to him, whilst
gazing up in the trees at the birds and monkeys, to find himself,
on a sudden, face to face with a crocodile, which stared at him
like a ghost, (Scheitan, Satan,) and which he dared not shoot, lest
he should slay his own father. Amongst the numerous Mahommedan
superstitions, there is a common belief in the transformation,
by witches and sorcerers, of men into beasts, especially into
crocodiles and hippopotami.

"Towards evening, cartridges were served out and muskets loaded,
for we were now in a hostile country. The powder-magazine stood
open, and lighted pipes passed to and fro over the hatchway. _Allah
Kerim!_ I do my best to rouse my captain from his indolence, by
drawing constant comparisons with the English sea-service; then I
fall asleep myself whilst the powder is being distributed, and,
waking early in the morning, find the magazine still open, and the
sentry, whose duty it is to give an alarm should the water in the
hold increase overmuch, fast asleep, with his tobacco-pipe in his
hand and his musket in his lap. Feizulla Capitan begged me not to
report the poor devil." This being a fair specimen of the prudence
and discipline observed during the whole voyage, it is really
surprising that Mr Werne ever returned to write its history, and
that his corpse--drowned, blown up, or with a knife between the
ribs--has not long since been resolved into the elements through
the medium of a Nile crocodile. The next day the merciful Feizulla,
whose kindness must have sprung from a fellow-feeling, got mad-drunk
at a merry-making on an island, and had to be brought by force on
board his ship. He seemed disposed to "run amuck;" grasped at sabre
and pistols, and put his people in fear of their lives, until Mr
Werne seized him neck and heels, threw him on his bed, and held
him there whilst he struggled himself weary and fell asleep. The
ship's company were loud in praise and admiration of Mr Werne, who,
however, was not quite easy as to the possible results of his bold
interference. "Only yesterday, I incurred the hatred of the roughest
of our Egyptian sailors, as he sat with another at the hand-mill,
and repeatedly applied to his companion the word _Nasrani_,
(Christian,) using it as a term of insult, until the whole crew
came and looked down into the cabin where I sat, and laughed--the
captain not being on board at the time. At last I lost my patience,
jumped up, and dealt the fellow a severe blow with my fist. In his
fanatical horror at being struck by a Christian, he tried to throw
himself overboard, and vowed revenge, which my servants told me.
Now, whilst Feizulla Capitan lies senseless, I see from my bed this
tall sailor leave the fore-part of the ship and approach our cabin,
his comrades following him with their eyes. From a fanatic, who
might put his own construction upon my recent friendly constraint
of Captain Feizulla, and might convert it into a pretext, I had
everything to apprehend. But he paused at the door, apologised, and
thanked me for not having reported him to his commander. He then
kissed my right hand, whilst in my left I held a pistol concealed
under the blanket."

Dangers, annoyances, and squabbles did not prevent Mr Werne
from writing up his log, and making minute observations of
the surrounding scenery. This was of ever-varying character.
Thickly-wooded banks were succeeded by a sea of grass, its
monotony unvaried by a single bush. Then came a crowd of islands,
composed of water-plants, knit together by creepers and parasites,
and alternately anchored to the shore, or floating slowly down
the stream, whose sluggish current was often imperceptible. The
extraordinary freshness and luxuriance of the vegetable creation
in that region of combined heat and moisture, excited Mr Werne's
enthusiastic admiration. At times he saw himself surrounded by a
vast tapestry of flowers, waving for miles in every direction, and
of countless varieties of tint and form. Upon land were bowers
and hills of blossom, groves of dark mimosa and gold-gleaming
tamarind; upon the water and swamps, interminable carpets of lilac
convolvulus, water-lilies, flowering-reeds, and red, blue, and white
lotus. The ambak tree, with its large yellow flowers and acacia-like
leaf, rose fifteen feet and more above the surface of the water out
of which it grew. This singular plant, a sort of link between the
forest-tree and the reed of the marshes, has its root in the bed of
the Nile, with which it each year rises, surpassing it in swiftness
of growth. Its stem is of a soft spungy nature, more like the pith
of a tree than like wood, but having, nevertheless, a pith of its
own. The lotus was one of the most striking features in these scenes
of floral magnificence; its brilliant white flower, which opens as
the sun rises, and closes when it sets, beaming, like a double lily,
in the shade it prefers. Mr Werne made the interesting observation,
that this beautiful flower, where it had not some kind of shelter,
closed when the sun approached the zenith, as though unable to
endure the too ardent rays of the luminary that called it into life.
Details of this kind, and fragments of eloquent description of the
gorgeous scenery of the Nile banks, occur frequently in the earlier
part of the "Expedition," during which there was little intercourse
with the natives, who were either hostile, uninteresting, or
concealed. Amongst other reasons for not remaining long near shore,
and especially for not anchoring there at night, was the torture the
voyagers experienced from gnats, camel-flies, and small wasps, which
not only forbade sleep, but rendered it almost impossible to eat and
drink. To escape this worse than Egyptian plague, the vessels lay in
the middle of the river, which, for some time after their departure,
was often three or four miles across. When the breeze was fresh,
there was some relief from insect persecution, but a lull made the
attacks insupportable. Doubtless a European complexion encouraged
these. Our German lifts up his voice in agony and malediction.

"The 10th December.--A dead calm all night. Gnats!!! No use creeping
under the bed-clothes, at risk of stifling with heat, compelled as
one is by their penetrating sting to go to bed dressed. Leave only a
little hole to breathe at, and in they pour, attacking lips, nose,
and ears, and forcing themselves into the throat--thus provoking a
cough which is torture, since, at each inspiration, a fresh swarm
finds its way into the gullet. They penetrate to the most sensitive
part of the body, creeping in, like ants, at the smallest aperture.
In the morning my bed contained thousands of the small demons which
I had crushed and smothered by the perpetual rolling about of my
martyred body. As I had forgotten to bring a musquito net from
Chartum, there was nothing for it but submission. Neither had I
thought of providing myself with leather gloves, unbearable in that
hot climate, but which here, upon the Nile, would have been by far
the lesser evil, since I was compelled to have a servant opposite to
me at supper-time, waving a huge fan so close under my nose, that it
was necessary to watch my opportunity to get the food to my mouth.
One could not smoke one's pipe in peace, even though keeping one's
hands wrapped in a woollen burnous, for the vermin stung through
this, and crept up under it from the ground. The black and coloured
men on board were equally ill-treated; and all night long the word
'_Baùda_' resounded through the ship, with an accompaniment of
curses and flapping of cloths. The _baùda_ resemble our long-legged
gnats, but have a longer proboscis, with which they bore through a
triple fold of strong linen. Their head is blue, their back tawny,
and their legs are covered with white specks like small pearls,
Another sort has short, strong legs, a thick brown body, a red
head, and posteriors of varying hues." These parti-coloured and
persevering bloodsuckers caused boils by the severity of their
sting, and so exhausted the sailors by depriving them of sleep,
that the ships could hardly be worked. Bitterly and frequently does
Mr Werne recur to his sufferings from their ruthless attacks. At
last a strange auxiliary came to his relief. On Christmas-day he
writes:--"For the last two nights we have been greatly disturbed by
the gnats, but a small cat, which I have not yet seen by daylight,
seems to find particular pleasure in licking my face, pulling my
beard, and purring continually, thus keeping off the insects.
Generally the cats in Bellet-Sudan are of a very wild and fierce
nature, which seems the result of their indifferent treatment by the
inhabitants. They walk into the poultry-houses and carry off the
strongest fowls, but care little for rats and mice. The Barabras,
especially those of Dongola, often eat them; not so the Arabs,
who spare them persecution--the cat having been one of Mahomet's
favourite animals--but who, at the same time, hold them unclean."

There is assuredly no river in the world whose banks, for so great
a distance, are so thickly peopled as those of the Nile. Day after
day the expedition passed an unbroken succession of populous
villages, until Mr Werne wondered whence the inhabitants drew
their nourishment, and a sapient officer from Kurdistan opined the
Schilluks to be a greater nation than the French. But what people,
and what habitations! The former scarce a degree above the brute,
the latter resembling dog-kennels, or more frequently thatched
bee-hives, with a round hole in the side, through which the inmates
creep. Stark-naked, these savages lay in the high grass, whose
seed forms part of their food, and gibbered and beckoned to the
passing Turks, who, for the most part, disregarded their gestures
of amity and invitation, shrewdly suspecting that their intentions
were treacherous and their lances hidden in the herbage. Wild rice,
fruits, and seeds, are eaten by these tribes, (the Schilluks,
Dinkas, and others,) who have also herds of cattle--oxen, sheep, and
goats, and who do not despise a hippopotamus chop or a crocodile
cutlet. Where the land is unproductive, fish is the chief article
of food. They have no horses or camels, and when they steal one of
these animals from the Turks, they do not kill it, probably not
liking its flesh, but they put out its eyes as a punishment for
having brought the enemy into their country. In one hour Mr Werne
counted seventeen villages, large or small; and Soliman Kaschef
assured him the Schilluks numbered two millions of souls, although
it is hard to say how he obtained the census. The _Bando_ or king,
although dwelling only two or three leagues from the river, did
not show himself. He mistrusted the Turks, and all night the great
war-drum was heard to beat. His savage majesty was quite right to be
on his guard. "I am well persuaded," says Mr Werne, "that if Soliman
Kaschef had once got the dreaded Bando of the Schilluks on board,
he would have sailed away with him. I read that in his face when
he was told the Bando would not appear. And gladly as I would have
seen this negro sovereign, I rejoiced that his caution frustrated
the projected shameful treachery. He had no particular grounds for
welcoming the Musselmans, those sworn foes of his people. Shortly
before our departure, he had sent three ambassadors to Chartum, to
put him on a friendly footing with the Turks, and so to check the
marauding expeditions of his Arab neighbours, of Soliman Kaschef
amongst the rest. The three Schilluks, who could not speak Arabic,
were treated in the Divan with customary contempt as _Abit_,
(slaves) and were handed over like common men to the care of Sheikh
el Bellet of Chartum. The Sheikh, who receives no pay, and performs
the duties of his office out of fear rather than for the sake of the
honour, showed them such excellent hospitality, that they came to
us Franks and begged a few piastres to buy bread and spirits." On
Mr Werne's representations to the Effendi, or chief man at Chartum,
dresses of honour (the customary presents) were prepared for them,
but they departed stealthily by night; and their master, the Bando,
was very indignant on learning the treatment they had received.

A vast green meadow, a sort of elephant pasture, separates the
Schilluks from their neighbours the Jengähs, concerning whom Mr
Werne obtained some particulars from a Tschauss or sergeant,
named Marian of Mount Habila, the son of the Mak or King of the
mountains of Nuba. His father had been vanquished and murdered by
the Turks, and he had been made a slave. This sergeant-prince was
of middle height, with a black tatooed countenance, and with ten
holes in each ear, out of which his captors had taken the gold
rings. He was a sensible, well-behaved man, and had been thirteen
years in the service, but was hopeless of promotion, having none to
recommend him. Besides this man, there were two Dinkas and a Jengäh
on board; but from them it was impossible to extract information
with respect to the manners and usages of their countrymen.
They held it treachery to divulge such particulars. Many of the
soldiers and sailors composing the expedition being natives of the
countries through which it sailed, apprehensions of desertion were
entertained, and partially realised. On the 30th December, whilst
passing through the friendly land of the Keks, everybody slept on
shore, and in the night sixteen men on guard deserted. They were
from the distant country of Nuba, (a district of Nubia,) which it
seemed scarcely possible they should ever reach, with their scanty
store of ammunition, and exposed to the assaults of hunger, thirst,
and hostile tribes. Hussein Aga went after them with fifty ferocious
Egyptians, likely to show little mercy to the runaways, with whom,
however, they could not come up. And suddenly the drums beat to call
all hands on board, for there was a report that all the negroes
were planning escape. During this halt Mr Werne made ornithological
observations, ascertaining, amongst other things, the species of
certain white birds, which he had observed sitting impudently upon
the backs of the elephants, picking the vermin from their thick
hides, as crows do in Europe from the backs of pigs. The elephants
evidently disapproved the operation, and lashed with their trunks
at their tormentors, who then flew away, but instantly returned to
recommence what Mr Werne calls their "dry fishing." These birds
proved to be small herons. Shortly before this, a large pelican
had been shot, and its crop was found to contain twenty-four fresh
fish, the size of herrings. Its gluttony had caused its death, the
weight it carried impeding its flight. Prodigious swarms of birds
and water-fowl find their nourishment in the White Stream, and upon
its swampy banks. In some places the trees were white with their
excrements, whose accumulation destroyed vegetable life. There is no
lack of nourishment for the feathered tribes--water and earth are
prolific of vermin. Millions of glow-worms glimmer in the rushes,
the air resounds with the shrill cry of myriads of grasshoppers,
and with the croaking of countless frogs. But for the birds, which
act as scavengers and vermin-destroyers, those shores would be
uninhabitable. The scorching sun fecundates the sluggish waters
and rank fat marsh, causing a never-ceasing birth of reptiles and
insects. Monstrous fish and snakes of all sizes abound. Concerning
the latter, the Arabs have strange superstitions. They consider them
in some sort supernatural beings, having a king, Shach Maran by
name, who is supposed to dwell in Turkish Kurdistan, not far from
Adana, where two villages are exempted from tribute on condition of
supplying the snakes with milk. Abdul-Elliab, a Kurd officer of the
expedition, had himself offered the milk-sacrifice to the snakes;
and he swore that he had seen their king, or at any rate one of his
_Wokils_, or vicegerents, of whom his serpentine majesty has many.
He had no sooner poured his milky offering into one of the marble
basins nature has there hollowed out, than a great snake, with long
hair upon its head, stepped out of a hole in the rocks and drank.
It then retired, without, as in some other instances, speaking to
the sacrificer, a taciturnity contritely attributed by the latter
to his not having yet entirely abjured strong drinks. Two other
Kurds vouched for the truth of this statement, adding, that the
_Maran_ had a human face, for that otherwise he could not speak,
and that he never showed himself except to a sultan or to a very
holy man. To the latter character the said Abdul-Elliab had great
pretensions, and his bigotry, hypocrisy, and constant quotations
from the Koran procured him from his irreverent shipmates, from Mr
Werne amongst the number, the nickname of the _Paradise-Stormer_,
it being manifest that he reckoned on taking by assault the blessed
abode promised by Mahomet to the faithful. Pending his admission to
the society of the houris, he solaced himself with that of a young
female slave, who often experienced cruel treatment at the hands of
her saintly master. Having one day committed the heinous offence of
preparing _merissa_, a strong drink made from corn, for part of the
crew, the Kurd, formerly, according to his own admission, a stanch
toper, beat her with a thong as she knelt half-naked upon the deck.
"As he did not attend to my calls from the cabin," says Mr Werne,
"but continued striking her so furiously as to cut the skin and
draw streams of blood, I jumped out, and pulled him backwards, so
that his legs flew up in the air. He sprang to his feet, retreated
to the bulwark of the ship, drew his sabre, and shouted, with a
menacing countenance, 'Effendi!' instead of calling me Kawagi,
which signifies a merchant, and is the usual title for a Frank. I
had no sooner returned to the cabin than he seized his slave to
throw her overboard, whereupon I caught up my double-barrel and
levelled at him, calling out, '_Ana oedrup!_' (I fire.) Thereupon
he let the girl go, and with a pallid countenance protested she was
his property, and he could do as he liked with her. Subsequently
he complained of me to the commandant, who, knowing his malicious
and hypocritical character, sent him on board the skiff, to the
great delight of the whole flotilla. On our return to Chartum,
he was cringing enough to ask my pardon, and to want to kiss my
hand, (although he was then a captain) because he saw that the
Bascha distinguished me. A few days previously to this squabble,
I had gained the affection and confidence of our black soldiers,
one of whom, a Tokruri or pilgrim from Darfur, had quarrelled with
an Arab, and wounded him with his knife. He jumped overboard to
drown himself, and, being unable to swim, had nearly accomplished
his object, when he drifted to our ship and was lifted on board.
They wanted to make him stand on his head, but I had him laid
horizontally upon his side, and began to rub him with a woollen
cloth, but at first could get no one to help me because he was an
_Abit_, a slave, until I threatened the captain he should be made
to pay the Bascha for the loss of his soldier. After long-continued
rubbing, the Tokruri gave signs of life, and they raised him into
a sitting posture, whilst his head still hung down. One of the
soldiers, who, as a Faki, pretended to be a sort of awaker of the
dead, seized him from behind under the arms, lifted him, and let him
fall thrice violently upon his hinder end, shouting in his ear at
the same time passages from the Koran, to which the Tokruri at last
replied by similar quotations. The superstition of these people is
so gross, that they believe such a pilgrim may be completely and
thoroughly drowned, and yet retain power to float to any part of the
shore he pleases, and, once on dry land, to resume his vitality."

A credulous traveller would have been misled by some of the strange
fables put forward, with great plausibility, by these Arabs and
other semi-savages, who have, moreover, a strong tendency to
exaggerate, and who, perceiving the avidity with which Mr Werne
investigated the animal and vegetable world around him, and his
desire for rare and curious specimens, occasionally got up a lie
for his benefit. Although kept awake many nights by the merciless
midges, his zeal for science would not suffer him to sleep in the
day, because he had no one he could trust to note the windings of
the river. One sultry noon, however, when the Arab rowers were
lazily impelling the craft against unfavourable breezes, and the
stream was straight for a long distance ahead, he indulged in a
siesta, during which visions of a happy German home hovered above
his pillow. On awaking, bathed in perspiration, to the dismal
realities of the pestilential Bach'r el Abiat, of incessant gnats
and barbarian society, his Arab companions had a yarn cut and dried
for him. During my sleep they had seen a swimming-bird as large as
a young camel, with a straight beak like a pelican, but without a
crop; they had not shot it for fear of awaking me, and because they
had no doubt of meeting with some more of these unknown birds. No
others appeared, and Mr Werne noted the camel-bird as an Egyptian
lie, not as a natural curiosity.

A month's sail carried the expedition into the land of the Keks,
a numerous, but not a very prosperous tribe. Their _tokuls_ or
huts were entirely of straw, walls as well as roof. The men were
quite naked, and of a bluish-gray colour, from the slime of the
Nile, with which they smear themselves as a protection against the
gnats. "There was something melancholy in the way in which those
poor creatures raised their hands above their heads, and let them
slowly fall, by manner of greeting. They had ivory rings upon their
arms, and one of them turned towards his hut, as if inviting us
in. Another stood apart, lifted his arms, and danced round in a
circle. A Dinka on board, who is acquainted with their language,
said they wanted us to give them durra, (a sort of corn,) and
that their cows were far away and would not return till evening.
This Dinka positively asserted, as did also Marian, that the Keks
kill no animal, but live entirely on grain and milk. I could not
ascertain, with certainty, whether this respect for brute life
extended itself to game and fish, but it is universally affirmed
that they eat cattle that die a natural death. This is done to some
extent in the land of Sudan, although not by the genuine Arabs:
it is against the Koran to eat a beast even that has been slain
by a bullet, unless its throat has been cut whilst it yet lived,
to let the prohibited blood escape. At Chartum I saw, one morning
early, two dead camels lying on a public square; men cut off great
pieces to roast, and the dogs looked on longingly. I myself, with
Dr Fischer and Pruner, helped to consume, in Kahira, a roasted
fragment of Clot Bey's beautiful giraffe, which had eaten too much
white clover. The meat was very tender, and of tolerably fine grain.
The tongue was quite a delicacy. On the other hand, I never could
stomach the coarse-grained flesh of camels, even of the young ones."
Africa is the land of strong stomachs. The Arabs, when on short
rations, eat locusts; and some of the negro tribes devour the fruit
of the elephant-tree, an abominable species of pumpkin, coveted by
elephants, but rejected even by Arabs, and which Mr Werne found
wholly impracticable, although his general rule was to try all the
productions of the country. His gastronomical experiments are often
connected with curious details of the animals upon which he tried
his teeth. On the 12th January, whilst suffering from an attack of
Nile-fever, which left him scarcely strength enough to post up his
journal, he heard a shot, and was informed that Soliman Kaschef had
killed with a single bullet a large crocodile, as it lay basking on
a sandy promontory of the bank. The Circassian made a present of the
skin to M. Arnaud, an excellent excuse for an hour's pause, that
the Frenchman might get possession of the scaly trophy. Upon such
trifling pretexts was the valuable time of the expedition frittered
away. "Having enough of other meat at that moment, the people
neglected cutting off the tail for food. My servants, however, who
knew that I had already tasted that sort of meat at Chartum, and
that at Taka I had eaten part of a snake, prepared for me by a
dervish, brought me a slice of the crocodile. Even had I been in
health, I could not have touched it, on account of the strong smell
of musk it exhaled; but, ill as I was, they were obliged to throw
it overboard immediately. When first I was in crocodile countries,
it was incomprehensible to me how the boatmen scented from afar
the presence of these creatures; but on my journey from Kahira to
Sennaar, when they offered me in Korusko a young one for sale, I
found my own olfactories had become very sensitive to the peculiar
odour. When we entered the Blue Stream, I could smell the crocodiles
six hundred paces off, before I had seen them. The glands,
containing a secretion resembling musk, are situated in the hinder
part of the animal, as in the civet cats of Bellet Sudan, which are
kept in cages for the collection of the perfume."

As the travellers ascended the river, their intercourse with the
natives became much more frequent, inasmuch as these, more remote
from Egyptian aggression, had less ground for mistrustful and
hostile feelings. Captain Selim had a stock of coloured shirts,
and an immense bale of beads, with which he might have purchased
the cattle, villages, goods and chattels, and even the bodies, of
an entire tribe, had he been so disposed. The value attached by
the savages of the White Stream to the most worthless objects of
European manufacture, enabled Mr Werne to obtain, in exchange for
a few glass beads, a large collection of their arms, ornaments,
household utensils, &c., now to be seen in the Royal Museum at
Berlin. The stolid simplicity of the natives of those regions
exceeds belief. One can hardly make up one's mind to consider them
as men. Even as the _ambak_ seems the link between useful timber
and worthless rushes, so does the Kek appear to partake as much
of brute as of human nature. He has at least as much affinity
with the big gray ape, whose dying agonies excited Mr Werne's
compassion at the commencement of his voyage, as with the civilised
and intellectual man who describes their strange appearance and
manners. A Kek, who had been sleeping in the ashes of a fire, a
common practice with that tribe, was found standing upon the shore
by some of the crew, who brought him on board Selim's vessel.
"Bending his body forward in an awkward ape-like manner, intended
perhaps to express submission, he approached the cabin, and, on
finding himself near it, dropped upon his knees and crept forward
upon them, uttering, in his gibberish, repeated exclamations of
greeting and wonderment. He had numerous holes through the rims
of his ears, which contained, however, no other ornament than one
little bar. They threw strings of beads over his neck, and there
was no end to his joy; he jumped and rolled upon the deck, kissed
the planks, doubled himself up, extended his hands over all our
heads, as if blessing us, and then began to sing. He was an angular,
high-shouldered figure, about thirty years of age. His attitude
and gestures were very constrained, which arose, perhaps, from the
novelty of his situation; his back was bent, big head hung forward,
his long legs, almost calf-less, were as if broken at the knees; in
his whole person, in short, he resembled an orang-outang. He was
perfectly naked, and his sole ornaments consisted of leathern rings
upon the right arm. How low a grade of humanity is this! The poor
natural touches one with his childish joy, in which he is assuredly
happier than any of us. By the help of the Dinka interpreter, he is
instructed to tell his countrymen they have no reason to retreat
before such _honest_ people as those who man the flotilla. Kneeling,
jumping, creeping, kissing the ground, he is then led away by the
hand like a child, and would assuredly take all he has seen for a
dream, but for the beads he bears with him." Many of these tribes
are composed of men of gigantic stature. On the 7th January, Mr
Werne, being on shore, would have measured some of the taller
savages, but they objected. He then gave his servants long reeds
and bade them stand beside the natives, thus ascertaining their
average height to be from six to seven Rhenish feet. The Egyptians
and Europeans looked like pigmies beside them. The women were in
proportion with the men. Mr Werne tells of one lady who looked clear
away over his head, although he describes himself as above the
middle height.

At this date, (7th January) the flotilla reached a large lake, or
inlet of the river, near to which a host of elephants grazed, and
a multitude of light-brown antelopes stood still and stared at the
intruders. The sight of the antelopes, which were of a species
called _ariel_, whose flesh is particularly well-flavoured, was
too much for Soliman Kaschef to resist. There was no wind; he gave
orders to cease towing, and went on shore to shoot his supper. The
antelopes retreated when the ships grated against the bank; and as
the rush-jungle was by no means safe, beasts of prey being wont to
hide there to catch the antelopes as they go to water at sunset,
a few soldiers were sent forward to clear the way. Nevertheless,
"on our return from the chase, during which not a single shot
was fired, we lost two _báltaschi_, (carpenters or sappers,) and
all our signals were insufficient to bring them back. They were
Egyptians, steady fellows, and most unlikely to desert; but their
comrades did not trouble themselves to look for them, shrugged their
shoulders, and supposed they had been devoured by the _assad_ or
the _nimr_--the lion or tiger. The word _nimr_ is here improperly
applied, there being no tigers in Africa, but it is the general term
for panthers and leopards." Here, at four-and-twenty degrees of
latitude south of Alexandria, this extraordinary river was nearly
four hundred paces wide. Mr Werne speculates on the origin of this
astonishing water-course, and doubts the possibility that the
springs of the White Stream supply the innumerable lakes and creeks,
and the immense tracts of marsh contiguous to it; that, too, under
an African sun, which acts as a powerful and constant pump upon the
immense liquid surface. When he started on his voyage, the annual
rains had long terminated. What tremendous springs those must be,
that could keep this vast watery territory full and overflowing!
Then the sluggishness of the current is another puzzle. Were the
Nile _one_ stream, Mr Werne observes--referring, of course, to the
White Nile--it must flow faster than it does. And he concludes
it to have tributaries, which, owing to the level nature of the
ground, and to the resistance of the main stream, stagnate to a
certain extent, rising and falling with the river, and contributing
powerfully to its nourishment. But the notion of exploring all
these watery intricacies with a flotilla of heavy-sailing barges,
manned by lazy Turks and Arabs, and commanded by men who care more
for getting drunk on arrack and going a-birding, than for the great
results activity and intelligence might obtain, is essentially
absurd. The proper squadron to explore the Bach'r el Abiat, through
the continued windings, and up the numerous inlets depicted in
Mr Mahlmann's map, is one consisting of three small steamers,
drawing very little water, with steady well-disciplined English
crews, accustomed to hot climates, and commanded by experienced and
scientific officers. With the strongest interest should we watch
the departure and anticipate the return of such an expedition as
this. "Much might be done by a steam-boat," says Mr Werne; who then
enumerates the obstacles to its employment. To bring it over the
cataracts of the Nile, (below the junction of the Blue and White
Streams,) it would be necessary to take the paddles entirely out,
that it might be dragged up with ropes, like a sailing vessel.
Or else it might be built at Chartum, but for the want of proper
wood; the sunt-tree timber, although very strong, being exceedingly
brittle and ill-adapted for ship-building. The greatest difficulty
would be the fuel--the establishment and guard of coal stores; and
as to burning charcoal, although the lower portion of the White
Stream has forests enough, they are wanting on its middle and
upper banks; to say nothing of the loss of time in felling and
preparing the wood, of the danger of attacks from natives, &c., &c.
If some of these difficulties are really formidable, others, on
the contrary, might easily be overcome, and none are insuperable.
Mr Werne hardly makes sufficient allowance for the difference
between Soliman Kaschef and a European naval officer, who would
turn to profit the hours and days the gallant Circassian spent in
antelope-shooting, in laughing at Abu Haschis the jester, and in a
sort of travelling seraglio he had arranged in his inner cabin, a
dark nook with closely-shut jalousies, that served as prison to an
unfortunate slave-girl, who lay all day upon a carpet, with scarcely
space to turn herself, guarded by a eunuch. Not a glimpse of the
country did the poor thing obtain during the whole of the voyage;
and, even veiled, she was forbidden to go on deck. Besides these
oriental relaxations, an occasional practical joke beguiled for the
commodore the tedium of the voyage. Feizulla, the tailor-captain,
whose strange passion for thimble and thread made him frequently
neglect his nautical duties, chanced one day to bring to before his
superior gave the signal. "Soliman Kaschef had no sooner observed
this than he fired a couple of shots at Feizulla Capitan, so
that I myself, standing before the cabin door, heard the bullets
whistle. Feizulla, did not stir, although both he and the sailors
in the rigging afterwards affirmed that the balls went within a
hand's-breadth of his head: he merely said, '_Malesch--hue billab_,'
(It is nothing--he jests;) and he shot twice in return, pointing
the gun in the opposite direction, that Soliman might understand
he took the friendly greeting as a Turkish joke, and that he, as a
bad shot, dared not level at him." Soliman, on the other hand, was
far too good a shot for such a sharp jest to be pleasant. The Turks
account themselves the best marksmen and horsemen in the world, and
are never weary of vaunting their prowess. Mr Werne says he saw an
Arnaut of Soliman's shoot a running hare with a single ball, which
entered in the animal's rear, and came out in front. And it was a
common practice, during the voyage, to bring down the fruit from
lofty trees by cutting the twigs with bullets. All these pastimes,
however retarded the progress of the expedition. The wind was
frequently light or unfavourable, and the lazy Africans made little
way with the towing rope. Then a convenient place would often tempt
to a premature halt; and, notwithstanding Soliman's sharp practice
with poor Feizulla, if a leading member of the party felt lazily
disposed, inclined for a hunting-party, or for a visit to a negro
village, he seldom had much difficulty in bringing the flotilla to
an anchor. In a straight line from north to south, the expedition
traversed, between its departure from Chartum and its return
thither, about sixteen hundred miles. It is difficult to calculate
the distance gone over; and probably Mr Werne himself would be
puzzled exactly to estimate it; but adding 20 per cent for windings,
obliquities, and digressions, (a very liberal allowance,) we get a
total of nearly two thousand miles, accomplished in five months,
including stoppages, being at the very moderate rate of about 13
miles a day. And this, we must remember, was on no rapid stream, but
up a river, whose current, rarely faster than one mile in an hour,
was more frequently only half a mile, and sometimes was so feeble
that it could not be ascertained. The result is not surprising,
bearing in mind the quality of ships, crews, and commanders: but
write "British" for "Egyptians," and the tale would be rather
different.

The upshot of this ill-conducted expedition was its arrival in the
kingdom of Bari, whose capital city, Pelenja, is situated in 4° N.
L., and which is inhabited by an exceedingly numerous nation of tall
and powerful build; the men six and a-half to seven French feet in
height--equal to seven and seven and a-half English feet--athletic,
well-proportioned, and, although black, with nothing of the usual
negro character in their features. The men go naked, with the
exception of sandals and ornaments; the woman wear leathern aprons.
They cultivate tobacco and different kinds of grain: from the
iron found in their mountains they manufacture weapons and other
implements, and barter them with other tribes. They breed cattle
and poultry, and are addicted to the chase. About fifteen hundred
of these blacks came down to the shore, armed to the teeth--a sight
that inspired the Turks with some uneasiness, although they had
several of their chiefs on board the flotilla, besides which, the
frank cordiality and good-humoured intelligent countenances of the
men of Bari forbade the idea of hostile aggression. "It had been
a fine opportunity for a painter or sculptor to delineate these
colossal figures, admirably proportioned, no fat, all muscle, and
magnificently limbed. None of them have beards, and it would seem
they use a cosmetic to extirpate them. Captain Selim, whose chin
was smooth-shaven, pleased them far better than the long-bearded
Soliman Kaschef; and when the latter showed them his breast,
covered with a fell of hair, they exhibited a sort of disgust,
as at something more appropriate to a beast than to a man." Like
most of the tribes on the banks of the White Nile, they extract
the four lower incisors, a custom for which Mr Werne is greatly
puzzled to account, and concerning which he hazards many ingenious
conjectures. Amongst the ape-like Keks and Dinkas, he fancied it to
originate in a desire to distinguish themselves from the beasts of
the field--to which they in so many respects assimilate; but he was
shaken in this opinion, on finding the practice to prevail amongst
the intelligent Bari, who need no such mark to establish their
difference from the brute creation. The Dinkas on board confirmed
his first hypothesis, saying that the teeth are taken out that they
may not resemble the jackass--which in many other respects they
certainly do. The Turks take it to be a rite equivalent to Mahomedan
circumcision, or to Christian baptism. The Arabs have a much more
extravagant supposition, which we refrain from stating, the more so
as Mr Werne discredits it. He suggests the possibility of its being
an act of incorporation in a great Ethiopian nation, divided into
many tribes. The operation is performed at the age of puberty; it is
unaccompanied by any particular ceremonies; and women as well as men
undergo it. Its motive still remains a matter of doubt to Mr Werne.

Before Lakono, sultan of the Bari, and his favourite sultana Ischok,
an ordinary-looking lady with two leathern aprons and a shaven head,
came on board Selim's vessel, the Turks made repeated attempts to
obtain information from some of the Sheiks concerning the gold
mines, whose discovery was the main object of the expedition. A
sensible sort of negro, one Lombé, replied to their questions, and
extinguished their hopes. There was not even copper, he said, in the
land of the Bari, although it was brought thither from a remoter
country, and Lakono had several specimens of it in his treasury. On
a gold bar being shown to him, he took it for copper, whence it was
inferred that the two metals were blended in the specimens possessed
by the sultan, and that the mountains of the copper country also
yielded the more precious ore. This country, however, lay many days'
journey distant from the Nile, and, had it even bordered on the
river, there would have been no possibility of reaching it. At a
very short distance above Palenja, the expedition encountered a bar
of rocks thrown across the stream. And although Mr Werne hints the
possibility of having tried the passage, the Turks were sick of the
voyage and were heartily glad to turn back. At the period of the
floods the river rises eighteen feet; and there then could be no
difficulty in surmounting the barrier. Now the waters were falling
fast. The six weeks lost by Arnaud's fault were again bitterly
deplored by the adventurous German--the only one of the party
who really desired to proceed. Twenty days sooner, and the rocks
could neither have hindered an advance nor afforded pretext for a
retreat. To Mr Werne's proposal, that they should wait two months
where they were, when the setting in of the rains would obviate
the difficulty, a deaf ear was turned--an insufficient stock of
provisions was objected; and although the flotilla had been stored
for a ten months' voyage, and had then been little more than two
months absent from Chartum, the wastefulness that had prevailed gave
some validity to the objection. One-and-twenty guns were fired, as
a farewell salute to the beautiful country Mr Werne would so gladly
have explored, and which, he is fully convinced, contains so much of
interest; and the sluggish Egyptian barks retraced their course down
stream.

It is proper here to note a shrewd conjecture of Mr Werne's,
that above the point reached by himself and his companions, the
difficulties of ascending the river would greatly and rapidly
increase. The bed becomes rocky, and the Bach'r el Abiat, assuming
in some measure the character of a mountain stream, augments the
rapidity of its current: so much so, that Mr Werne insists on the
necessity of a strong north wind, believing that towing, however
willingly and vigorously attempted, would be found unavailing. This
is another strong argument in favour of employing steamboats.

Although the narrative of the homeward voyage is by no means
uninteresting, and contains details of the river's course valuable
to the geographer and to the future explorer, it has not the
attraction of the up-stream narrative. The freshness is worn off;
the waters sink, and the writer's spirits seem disposed to follow
their example; there is all the difference between attack and
retreat--between a cheerful and hopeful advance, and a retrograde
movement before the work is half done. But, vexed as an enthusiastic
and intrepid man might naturally feel at seeing his hopes frustrated
by the indolent indifference of his companions, Mr Werne could
hardly deem his five months thrown away. We are quite sure those
who read his book will be of opinion that the time was most
industriously and profitably employed.

A sorrowful welcome awaited our traveller, after his painful and
fatiguing voyage. There dwelt at Chartum a renegade physician, a
Palermitan named Pasquali, whose Turkish name was Soliman Effendi,
and who was notorious as a poisoner, and for the unscrupulous
promptness with which he removed persons in the slightest degree
unpleasing to himself or to his patron Achmet Bascha. In Arabia, it
was currently believed, he had once poisoned thirty-three soldiers,
with the sole view of bringing odium upon the physician and
apothecary, two Frenchmen, who attended them. In Chartum he was well
known to have committed various murders.

"Although this man," says Mr Werne, "was most friendly and sociable
with me, I had everything to fear from him on account of my brother,
by whom the Bascha had declared his intention of replacing him in
the post of medical inspector of Bellet-Sudàn. It was therefore in
the most solemn earnest that I threatened him with death, if upon
my return I found my brother dead, and learned that they had come
at all in contact. '_Dio guarde, che affronto!_' was his reply;
and he quietly drank off his glass of rum, the same affront having
already been offered him in the Bascha's divan; the reference being
naturally to the poisonings laid to his charge in Arabia and here."

At Chartum Mr Werne found his brother alive, but on the eleventh
day after his return he died in his arms. The renegade had had no
occasion to employ his venomous drugs; the work had been done as
surely by the fatal influence of the noxious climate.



ART AND ARTISTS IN SPAIN.


The accomplishments brought back by our grandfathers from the
Continent to grace the drawing-rooms of May Fair, or enliven the
solitudes of Yorkshire, were a favourite subject for satirists, some
"sixty years since." Admitting the descriptions to be correct, it
must be remembered that the grand tour had become at once monotonous
and deleterious,--from Calais to Paris, from Paris to Geneva,
from Geneva to Milan, from Milan to Florence, thence to Rome, and
thence to Naples, the English "my lord," with his bear-leader,
was conducted with regularity, if not with speed; and the same
course of sights and society was prescribed for, and taken by,
generation after generation of Oxonians and Cantabs. Then, again,
the Middle Ages, with their countless graceful vestiges, their
magnificent architecture, which even archaic Evelyn thought and
called "barbarous," their chivalrous customs, religious observances,
rude yet picturesque arts, and fanciful literature, were literally
blotted out from the note-book of the English tourist. Whatever
was classical or modern, that was worthy of regard; but whatever
belonged to "Europe's middle night," _that_ the descendants of
Saxon thanes or Norman knights disdained even to look at. Even had
there been no Pyrenees to cross, or no Bay of Biscay to encounter,
so Gothic a country as Spain was not likely to attract to its
dusky sierras, frequent monasteries, and mediæval towns, the fine
gentlemen and Mohawks of those enlightened days; nor need we be
surprised that the natural beauties of that romantic land--its
weird mountains, primæval forests, and fertile plains, fragrant
with orange groves, and bright with flowers of every hue, unknown
to English gardens--remained unexplored by the countrymen of Gray
and Goldsmith, who have put on record their marked disapprobation
of Nature in her wildest and most sublime mood. Thus, then, it was
that, with rare exceptions, the pleasant land of Spain was a sealed
book to Englishmen, until the Great Captain rivalled and eclipsed
the feats and triumphs of the Black Prince in every province of the
Peninsula, and enabled guardsmen and hussars to admire the treasures
of Spanish art in many a church and convent unspoiled by French
rapacity. Nor may we deny our obligations to Gallic plunderers.
Many a noble picture that now delights the eyes of thousands,
exalts and purifies the taste of youthful painters, and sends,
on the purple wings of European fame, the name of its Castilian,
or Valencian, or Andalusian creator down the stream of time, but
for Soult or Sebastiani, might still have continued to waste its
sweetness on desert air. Thenceforward, in spite of brigands and
captain-generals, rival constitutions and contending princes, have
adventurous Englishmen been found to delight in rambling, like
Inglis, in the footsteps of Don Quixote,--emulating the deeds of
Peterborough, like Ranelagh and Henningsen, or throwing themselves
into the actual life, and studying the historic manners of Spain,
like Carnarvon and Ford. Still, though soldier and statesman,
philosopher and littérateur, had put forth their best powers in
writing of the country that so worthily interested them, a void was
ever left for some new comer to fill; and right well, in his three
handsome, elaborate, and most agreeable volumes, has Mr Stirling
filled that void. Not one of the goodly band of Spanish painters now
lacks a "sacred poet" to inscribe his name in the temple of fame.
With indefatigable research, most discriminating taste, and happiest
success, has Mr Stirling pursued and completed his pleasant labour
of love, and presented to the world "Annals of the Artists of Spain"
worthy--can we say more?--of recording the triumphs of El Mudo and
El Greco, Murillo and Velasquez.[16]

  [16] _Annals of the Artists of Spain._ By WILLIAM STIRLING, M. A. 3
  vols. London: Ollivier.

At least a century and a half before Holbein was limning the burly
frame and gorgeous dress of bluff King Hal, and creating at once
a school and an appreciation of art in England, were the early
painters of Spain enriching their magnificent cathedrals, and
religious houses, with pictures displaying as correct a knowledge
of art, and as rich a tone of colour, as the works of that great
master. There is something singular and mysterious in the contrast
afforded by the early history of painting in the two countries.
While in poetry, in painting on glass, in science, in manufactures,
in architecture, England appears to have kept pace with other
countries, in painting and in sculpture she appears always to
have lagged far behind. Gower, Chaucer, Friar Bacon, William of
Wyckham, Waynfleete, the unknown builders of ten thousand churches
and convents, the manufacturers of the glass that still charms our
eyes, and baffles the rivalry of our Willements and Wailes, at York
and elsewhere--the illuminators of the missals and religious books,
whose delicate fancy and lustrous tints are even now teaching our
highborn ladies that long-forgotten art--yielded the palm to none of
their brethren in Europe; but where and who were our contemporaneous
painters and sculptors? In the luxurious and graceful court of
Edward IV., who represented that art which Dello and Juan de Castro,
under royal and ecclesiastical patronage, had carried to such
perfection in Spain? That no English painters of any note flourished
at that time, is evident from the silence of all historical
documents; nor does it appear that foreign artists were induced, by
the hope of gain or fame, to instruct our countrymen in the art to
which the discoveries of the Van Eycks had imparted such a lustre.
It is true that the desolating Wars of the Roses left scant time and
means to the sovereigns and nobility of England for fostering the
arts of peace; but still great progress was being made in nearly
all those arts, save those of which we speak; and, if we remember
rightly, Mr Pugin assigns the triumph of English architecture to
this troublous epoch. Nor, although Juan I., Pedro the Cruel, and
Juan II., were admirers and patrons of painting, was it to royal or
noble favour that Spanish art owed its chiefest obligations. The
church--which, after the great iconoclastic struggle of the eighth
century, had steadily acted on the Horatian maxim,

    "Segnius irritant animos demissa per aures,
     Quam quæ sunt oculis subjecta fidelibus"--

in Spain embraced the young and diffident art with an ardour
and a munificence which, in its palmiest and most prosperous days,
that art never forgot, and was never wearied of requiting. Was it so
in England? and do we owe our lack of ancient English pictures to
the reforming zeal of our iconoclastic reformers? Did the religious
pictures of our Rincons, our Nuñez, and our Borgoñas, share the
fate of the libraries that were ruthlessly destroyed by the
ignorant myrmidons of royal rapacity? If so, it is almost certain
that the records which bewail and denounce the fate of books and
manuscripts, would not pass over the destruction of pictures; while
it is still more certain that the monarch and his courtiers would
have appropriated to themselves the pictured saints, no less than
the holy vessels, of monastery and convent. It cannot, therefore,
be said that the English Reformation deprived our national school
of painting of its most munificent patrons, and most ennobling and
purest subjects, in the destruction of the monasteries, and the
spoliation of churches. That the Church of England, had she remained
unreformed, might, in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, have
emulated her Spanish or Italian sister in her patronage of, and
beneficial influence upon, the arts of painting and sculpture, it
is needless either to deny or assert; we fear there is no room for
contending that, since the Reformation, she has in any way fostered,
guided, or exalted either of those religious arts.

In Spain, on the contrary, as Mr Stirling well points out, it was
under the august shadow of the church that painting first raised her
head, gained her first triumphs, executed her most glorious works,
and is even now prolonging her miserable existence.

The venerable cathedral of Toledo was, in effect, the cradle of
Spanish painting. Founded in 1226 by St Ferdinand, it remained,
to quote Mr Stirling's words, "for four hundred years a nucleus
and gathering-place for genius, where artists swarmed and
laboured like bees, and where splendid prelates--the popes of
the Peninsula--lavished their princely revenues to make fair and
glorious the temple of God intrusted to their care." Here Dolfin
introduced, in 1418, painting on glass; here the brothers Rodrigues
displayed their forceful skill as sculptors, in figures which
still surmount the great portal of that magnificent cathedral;
and here Rincon, the first Spanish painter who quitted the stiff
mediæval style, loved best to execute his graceful works. Nor
when, with the house of Austria, the genius of Spanish art quitted
the Bourbon-governed land, did the custodians of this august
temple forget to stimulate and reward the detestable conceits, and
burlesque sublimities, of such artists as the depraved taste of the
eighteenth century delighted to honour. Thus, in 1721, Narciso Tome
erected at the back of the choir an immense marble altar-piece,
called the Trasparente, by order of Archbishop Diego de Astorgo,
for which he received two hundred thousand ducats; and thus, fifty
years later, Bayeu and Maella were employed to paint in fresco
the cloisters that had once gloried in the venerable paintings of
Juan de Borgoña. At Toledo, then, under the auspices of the great
Castilian queen, Isabella, may be said to have risen the Castilian
school of art. The other great schools of Spanish painting were
those of Andalusia, of Valencia, and that of Arragon and Catalonia;
but, for the mass of English readers, the main interest lies in the
two first, the schools that produced or acquired El Mudo and El
Greco, Velasquez and Murillo. The works of the two last-mentioned
artists are now so well known, and so highly appreciated in England,
that we are tempted to postpone for the present any notice of that
most delightful part of Sir Stirling's book which treats of them,
and invite our readers to trace the course of art in that stern old
city to which we have already referred, Toledo.

Before the grave had closed upon the cold remains of Rincon, Juan de
Borgoña had proved himself worthy of wielding the Castilian pencil,
and, under the patronage of the great Toledan archbishop, Ximenes de
Cisneros, produced works which still adorn the winter chapter-room
of that cathedral. These are interesting not only as specimens of
art, but as manifestations of the religious ἠθος of Spain at the
commencement of the sixteenth century: let Mr Stirling describe one
of the most remarkable of these early paintings:--"The lower end of
the finely-proportioned, but badly-lighted room, is occupied by the
'Last Judgment,' a large and remarkable composition. Immediately
beneath the figure of our Lord, a hideous fiend, in the shape of a
boar, roots a fair and reluctant woman out of her grave with his
snout, as if she were a trufle, twining his tusks in her long amber
locks. To the left are drawn up in a line a party of the wicked,
each figure being the incarnation of a sin, of which the name is
written on a label above in Gothic, letters, as 'Soberbia,' and the
like. On their shoulders sit little malicious imps, in the likeness
of monkeys, and round their lower limbs, flames climb and curl.
The forms of the good and faithful, on the right, display far less
vigour of fancy." So the good characters in modern works of fiction
are more feebly drawn, and excite less interest, than the Rob Roys
and Dirk Hattericks, the Conrads and the Manfreds. Nor was Toledo at
this time wanting in the sister art of sculpture: while the Rincons,
and Berruguete, and Borgoña, were enriching the cathedral with their
pictures and their frescoes, Vigarny was elaborating the famous high
altar of marble, and the stalls on the epistle side. In concluding
his notice of Vigarny, "the first great Castilian sculptor," Mr
Stirling gives a sketch of the style of sculpture popular in Spain.
Like nearly all the "Cosas d'Espana," it is peculiar, and owes
its peculiarity to the same cause that has impressed so marked a
character on Spanish painting and Spanish pharmacopeia--religion.

Let not the English lover of the fine arts, invited to view the
masterpieces of Spanish sculpture, imagine that his eyes are to be
feasted on the nude, though hardly indecent forms of Venuses and
Apollos, Ganymedes and Andromedas.

Beautiful, and breathing, and full of imagination, indeed, those
Spanish statues are--"idols," as our author generally terms
them; but the idolatry they represent or evoke is heavenly, not
earthly--spiritual, not sensuous. Chiselled out of a block of cedar
or lime-wood, with the most reverential care, the image of the
Queen of Heaven enjoyed the most exquisite and delicate services of
the rival sister arts, and, "copied from the loveliest models, was
presented to her adorers sweetly smiling, and gloriously apparelled
in clothing of wrought gold." But we doubt whether any Englishman
who has not seen can understand the marvellous beauty of these
painted wooden images. Thus Berruguete, who combined both arts in
perfection, executed in 1539 the archbishop's throne at Toledo,
"over which hovers an airy and graceful figure, carved in dark
walnut, representing our Lord on the Mount of Transfiguration, and
remarkable for its fine and floating drapery."

Continuing our list of Toledan artists, "whose whole lives and
labours lay within the shadow of that great Toledan church, whose
genius was spent in its service, and whose names were hardly known
beyond its walls," (vol. i. p. 150,) we come to T. Comontes, who,
among other works for that munificent Alma Mater, executed from
the designs of Vigarny the retablo (reredos) for the chapel "de
los Reyes Nuevos," in 1533. It was at Toledo that El Mudo, the
Spanish Titian, died, and at Toledo that Blas del Prado was born.
When in 1593 the Emperor of Morocco asked that the best painter
of Spain might be sent to his court, Philip II. appointed Blas
del Prado to fulfil the Mussulman's artistic desires: previous to
this, the chapter of Toledo had named him their second painter, and
he had painted a large altar-piece, and other pictures, for their
cathedral. But perhaps the Toledan annals of art contain no loftier
name than that of El Greco. Domemis Theotocopuli, who, born, it is
surmised, at Venice in 1548, is found in 1577 painting at Toledo,
for the cathedral, his famous picture of The Parting of our Lord's
Garment, on which he bestowed the labour of a decade, and of which
we give Mr Stirling's picturesque description.

"The august figure of the Saviour, arrayed in a red robe, occupies
the centre of the canvass; the head, with its long dark locks, is
superb; and the noble and beautiful countenance seems to mourn for
the madness of them who 'knew not what they did;' his right arm
is folded on his bosom, seemingly unconscious of the rope which
encircles his wrist, and is violently dragged downwards by two
executioners in front. Around and behind him appears a throng of
priests and warriors, amongst whom the Greek himself figures as the
centurion, in black armour. In drawing and composition, this picture
is truly admirable, and the colouring is, on the whole, rich and
effective--although it is here and there laid on in that spotted
streaky manner, which afterwards became the great and prominent
defect of El Greco's style."

Summoned from the cathedral to the court, El Greco painted, by
royal command, a large altar-piece, for the church at the Escurial,
on the martyrdom of St Maurice; "little less extravagant and
atrocious," says our lively author, "than the massacre it recorded."
Neither king nor court painters could praise this performance, and
the effect of his failure at the Escurial appears to have been
his return to Toledo. Here, in 1584, he painted, by order of the
Archbishop Quiroga, "The Burial of the Count of Orgaz," a picture
then and now esteemed as his master-piece, and still to be seen
in the church of Santo Tomé. Warm is the encomium, and eloquently
expressed, which Mr Stirling bestows upon this gem of Toledan art.
"The artist, or lover of art, who has once beheld it, will never,
as he rambles among the winding streets of the ancient city, pass
the pretty brick belfry of that church--full of horse-shoe niches
and Moorish reticulations,--without turning aside to gaze upon
its superb picture once more. It hangs to your left, on the wall
opposite to the high altar. Gonzalo Ruiz, Count of Orgaz, head of
a house famous in romance, rebuilt the fabric of the church, and
was in all respects so religious and gracious a grandee, that,
when he was buried in 1323, within these very walls, St Stephen and
St Augustine came down from heaven, and laid his body in the tomb
with their own holy hands--an incident which forms the subject of
the picture. St Stephen, a dark-haired youth of noble countenance,
and St Augustine, a hoary old man wearing a mitre, both of them
arrayed in rich pontifical vestments of golden tissue, support the
dead Count in their arms, and gently lower him into the grave,
shrouded like a baron of Roslin 'in his iron panoply.' Nothing can
be finer than the execution and the contrast of these three heads;
never was the image of the peaceful death of 'the just man' more
happily conveyed, than in the placid face and powerless form of
the warrior: nor did Giorgione or Titian ever excel the splendid
colouring of his black armour, rich with gold damascening. To the
right of the picture, behind St Stephen, kneels a fair boy in a
dark dress, perhaps the son of the Count; beyond rises the stately
form of a gray friar; to the left, near St Augustine, stand two
priests in gorgeous vestments, holding, the one a book, and the
other a taper. Behind this principal group appear the noble company
of mourners, hidalgos and old Christians all, with olive faces and
beards of formal cut, looking on with true Castilian gravity and
phlegm, as if the transaction were an every-day occurrence. As they
were mostly portraits, perhaps some of the originals did actually
stand, a few years later, with the like awe in their hearts and
calm on their cheeks, in the royal presence-chamber, when the news
came to court that the proud Armada of Spain had been vanquished by
the galleys of Howard, and cast away on the rocks of the Hebrides."
We make no apology for thus freely quoting from Mr Stirling's
pages his description of this picture; the extract brings vividly
before our readers at once the merits of the old Toledan painter,
and his accomplished biographer and critic. After embellishing his
adopted city, not only with pictures such as this, but with works of
sculpture and architecture, and vindicating his graceful profession
from the unsparing exactions of the tax-gatherers--a class who
appear to have waged an unrelenting though intermittent war against
the fine arts in Spain--he died there at a green old age in 1625,
and was buried in the church of St Bartolemé. Even the painters
most employed at the munificent and art-loving court of the second
and third Philips, found time to paint for the venerable cathedral.
Thus, in 1615, Vincencio Carducho, the Florentine, painted, with
Eugenio Caxes, a series of frescoes in the chapel of the Sagrario;
and thus Eugenio Caxes, leaving the works at the Pardo and Madrid,
painted for the cathedral of Toledo the Adoration of the Magi, and
other independent pictures.

Meanwhile the school of El Greco was producing worthy fruit; from
it, in the infancy of the seventeenth century, came forth Luis
Tristan, an artist even now almost unknown in London and Edinburgh,
but whose style Velasquez did not disdain to imitate, and whose
praises he was never tired of sounding. "Born, bred, and sped"
in Toledo, or its neighbourhood, as Morales was emphatically the
painter of Badajoz, so may Tristan be termed the painter of Toledo.
No foreign graces, no classical models, adorned or vitiated his
stern Spanish style; yet, in his portrait of Archbishop Sandoval,
he is said by Mr Stirling to have united the elaborate execution
of Sanchez Coello with much of the spirit of Titian. And of him is
the pleasant story recorded, that having, while yet a stripling,
painted for the Jeronymite convent at Toledo a Last Supper, for
which he asked two hundred ducats, and being denied payment by the
frugal friars, he appealed with them to the arbitration of his old
master, El Greco, who, having viewed the picture, called the young
painter a rogue and a novice, for asking only two for a painting
worth five hundred ducats. In the same Toledan church that contains
the ashes of his great master, lies the Murcian Pedro Orrente,
called by our author "the Bassano, or the Roos--the great sheep and
cattle master of Spain:" he too was employed by the art-encouraging
chapter, and the cathedral possessed several of his finest pictures.
But with Tristan and Orrente the glories of Toledan art paled and
waned; and, trusting that our readers have not been uninterested
in following our brief sketch of the remarkable men who for four
hundred years rendered this quaint old Gothic city famous for its
artistic splendours, we retrace our steps, halting and perplexed
among so many pleasant ways, blooming flowers, and brilliant bowers,
to the magnificent, albeit gloomy Escurial, where Philip II lavished
the wealth of his mighty empire in calling forth the most vigorous
energies of Spanish and of foreign art.

For more than thirty years did the astonished shepherds of the
Guadaramas watch the mysterious pile growing under scaffolding alive
with armies of workmen; and often, while the cares of the Old World
and the New--to say nothing of that other World, which was seldom
out of Philip's thoughts, and to which his cruel fanaticism hurried
so many wretches before their time--might be supposed to demand
his attention at Madrid, were they privileged to see their mighty
monarch perched on a lofty ledge of rock, for hours, intently gazing
upon the rising walls and towers which were to redeem his vow to St
Laurence at the battle of Saint Quentin, and to hand down, through
all Spanish time, the name and fame of the royal and religious
founder. On the 23d of April 1563, the first stone of this Cyclopean
palace was laid, under the direction of Bautiste di Toledo, at
whose death, in 1567, the work was continued by Juan de Herrera,
and finally perfected by Leoni (as to the interior decorations) in
1597. Built in the quaint unshapely form of St Laurence's gridiron,
the Escurial is doubtless open to much severe criticism; but the
marvellous grandeur, the stern beauty, and the characteristic
effect of the gigantic pile, must for ever enchant the eyes of all
beholders, who are not doomed by perverse fate to look through the
green spectacles of gentle dulness. But it is not our purpose to
describe the Escurial; we only wish to bring before our readers the
names and merits of a few of the Spanish artists, who found among
its gloomy corridors or sumptuous halls niches in the temple of
fame, and in its saturnine founder the most gracious and munificent
of patrons. Suffice it, then, to say of the palace-convent, in Mr
Stirling's graceful words, that "Italy was ransacked for pictures
and statues, models and designs; the mountains of Sicily and
Sardinia for jaspers and agates; and every sierra of Spain furnished
its contribution of marble. Madrid, Florence, and Milan supplied
the sculptures of the altars; Guadalajara and Cuenca, gratings
and balconies; Saragossa the gates of brass; Toledo and the Low
Countries, lamps, candelabra, and bells; the New World, the finer
woods; and the Indies, both East and West, the gold and gems of the
custodia, and the five hundred reliquaries. The tapestries were
wrought in Flemish looms; and, for the sacerdotal vestments, there
was scarce a nunnery in the empire, from the rich and noble orders
of Brabant and Lombardy to the poor sisterhoods of the Apulian
highlands, but sent an offering of needlework to the honoured
fathers of the Escurial."

We could wish to exclude from our paper all notice of the foreign
artists, whose genius assisted in decorating the new wonder of the
world; but how omit from any Escurialian or Philippian catalogue
the names of Titian and Cellini, Cambiaso and Tibaldi? For seven
long years did the great Venetian labour at his famous Last Supper,
painted for, and placed in the refectory; and countless portraits
by his fame-dealing pencil graced the halls and galleries of the
Palatian convents. In addition to these, the Pardo boasted eleven of
his portraits; among them, one of the hero Duke Emmanuel Philibert
of Savoy, who has received a second grant of renown--let us hope
a more lasting one[17]--from the poetic chisel of Marochetti, and
stands now in the great square of Turin, the very impersonation of
chivalry, horse and hero alike--κυδεί γαιῶν.

  [17] All these portraits were destroyed by fire in the reign of
  Philip III.

The magnificent Florentine contributed "the matchless marble
crucifix behind the prior's seat in the choir," of which Mr Stirling
says--"Never was marble shaped into a sublimer image of the great
sacrifice for man's atonement." Luca Cambiaso, the Genoese, painted
the Martyrdom of St Laurence for the high altar of the church--a
picture that must have been regarded, from its subject and position,
as the first of all the Escurial's religious pictures,--besides the
vault of the choir, and two great frescoes for the grand staircase.

Pellegrino Tibaldi, a native of the Milanese, came at Philip's
request to the Escurial in 1586. He, too, painted a Martyrdom of
Saint Laurence for the high altar, but apparently with no better
success than his immediate predecessor, Zuccaro, whose work his
was to replace. But the ceiling of the library was Tibaldi's field
of fame; on it he painted a fresco 194 feet long by 30 wide,
which still speaks to his skill in composition and brilliancy in
colouring. Philip rewarded him with a Milanese marquisate and one
hundred thousand crowns.

Morales, the first great devotional painter of Castile, on whom his
admiring countrymen bestowed the soubriquet of "divine"--with more
propriety, it must be confessed, than their descendants have shown
in conferring it upon Arguelles--contributed but one picture to
the court, and none to the Escurial; but in Alonzo Sanchez Coello,
born at Benifayrô, in Valencia, we find a famous native artist
decorating the superb walls of the new palace. While at Madrid he
was lodged in the Treasury, a building which communicated with the
palace by a door, of which the King kept a key; and often would the
royal Mæcenas slip thus, unobserved by the artist, into his studio.
Emperors and popes, kings and queens, princes and princesses, were
alike his friends and subjects; but we are now only concerned
to relate that, in 1582, he painted "five altar-pieces for the
Escurial, each containing a pair of saints." Far more of interest,
however, attaches itself to the name and memory of Juan Fernandez
Navarete, "whose genius was no less remarkable than his infirmities,
and whose name--El Mudo, the dumb painter--is as familiar to Europe
as his works are unknown," (vol. i. p. 250.) Born at Logroño in
1526, he went in his youth to Italy. Here he attracted the notice
of Don Luis Manrique, grand-almoner to Philip, who procured him
an invitation to Madrid. He was immediately set to work for the
Escurial; and in 1571 four pictures, the Assumption of the Virgin,
the Martyrdom of St James the Great, St Philip, and a Repenting St
Jerome, were hung in the sacristy of the convent, and brought him
five hundred ducats. In 1576 he painted, for the reception-hall of
the convent, a large picture representing Abraham receiving the
three Angels. "This picture," says Father Andres Ximenes, quoted
by Mr Stirling, (vol. i. p. 255) "so appropriate to the place it
fills, though the first of the master's works that usually meets
the eye, might, for its excellence, be viewed the last, and is well
worth coming many a league to see." An agreement, bearing date the
same year, between the painter and the prior, by which the former
covenanted to paint thirty-two large pictures for the side altars,
is preserved by Cean Bermudez; but El Mudo unfortunately died when
only eight of the series had been painted. On the 28th of March 1579
this excellent and remarkable painter died in the 53d year of his
age. A few years later, Juan Gomez painted from a design of Tibaldi
a large picture of St Ursula, which replaced one of Cambiaso's least
satisfactory Escurialian performances.

While acres of wall and ceiling were being thus painted in fresco,
or covered by large and fine pictures, the Escurial gave a ready
home to the most minute of the fine arts: illuminators of missals,
and painters of miniatures, embroiderers of vestments, and designers
of altar-cloths, found their labours appreciated, and their
genius called forth, no less than their more aspiring compeers.
Fray Andrez de Leon, and Fray Martin de Palencia, enriched the
Escurial with exquisite specimens of their skill in the arts of
miniature-painting and illuminating; and under the direction of Fray
Lorenzo di Monserrate, and Diego Rutiner, the conventual school of
embroidery produced frontals and dalmatics, copes, chasubles, and
altar-cloths, of rarest beauty and happiest designs. The goldsmiths
and silversmiths, too, lacked not encouragement in this greatest
of temples. Curious was the skill, and cunning the hand, which
fashioned the tower of gold and jasper to contain the Escurial's
holiest relique,--a muscle, singed and charred, of St Laurence--and
no doubt that skill was nobly rewarded.

In 1598, clasping to his breast the veil of Our Lady of Monserrat,
in a little alcove hard by the church of the Escurial, died its
grim, magnificent founder. He had witnessed the completion of his
gigantic designs: palace and convent, there it stood--a monument
alike of his piety and his pride, and a proof of the grandeur and
resources of the mighty empire over which he ruled. But he appears
to have thought with the poet--

    "Weighed in the balance, hero-dust
      Is vile as mortal clay;"

for he built no stately mausoleum, merely a common vault, to
receive the imperial dead. This omission, in 1617, Philip III.
undertook to supply; and Giovanni Battista Crescenzi, an Italian,
was selected as the architect. For thirty-four years did he and his
successors labour at this royal necropolis, which when finished
"became, under the name of the Pantheon, the most splendid chamber
of the Escurial."--(Vol. i. p. 412.)

Mr Stirling's second volume opens with a graphic account of the
decay of Spanish power under Philip IV., and an equally graphic
description of this, the chief architectural triumph of his long
inglorious reign. The Pantheon was "an octagonal chamber 113 feet
in circumference, and 38 feet in height, from the pavement to the
centre of the domed vault. Each of its eight sides, excepting the
two which are occupied by its entrance, and the altar, contain
four niches and four marble urns; the walls, Corinthian pilasters,
cornices and dome, are formed of the finest marbles of Toledo and
Biscay, Tortosa and Genoa; and the bases, capitals, scrolls, and
other ornaments, are of gilt bronze. Placed beneath the presbytery
of the church, and approached by the long descent of a stately
marble staircase, this hall of royal tombs, gleaming with gold and
polished jasper, seems a creation of Eastern romance.... Hither
Philip IV. would come, when melancholy--the fatal taint of his blood
was strong upon him--to hear mass, and meditate on death, sitting in
the niche which was shortly to receive his bones." Yet this was the
monarch whose quick eye detected the early genius of Velasquez, and
who bore the palm as a patron from all the princes of his house, and
all the sovereigns of Europe. Well did the great painter repay the
discriminating friendship of the king, and so long as Spanish art
endures, will the features of Philip IV. be known in every European
country; and his fair hair, melancholy mien, impassive countenance
and cold eyes, reveal to all time the hereditary characteristics of
the phlegmatic house of Austria.

Diego Rodriguez de Silva y Velasquez was born at Seville in 1599.
Here he entered the school of Herrera the Elder, a dashing painter,
and a violent man, who was for ever losing alike his temper and
his scholars. Velasquez soon left his turbulent rule for the
gentler instruction of Francisco Pacheco. In his studio the young
artist worked diligently, while he took lessons at the same time
of a yet more finished artist--nature; the nature of bright,
sunny, graceful Andalusia. Thus, while Velasquez cannot be called
a self-taught painter, he retained to the last that freedom from
mannerism, and that gay fidelity to nature, which so often--not in
his case--compensate for a departure from the highest rules and
requirements of art.

While he was thus studying and painting the flowers and the fruits,
the damsels and the beggars, of sunny Seville, there arrived in that
beautiful city a collection of Italian and Spanish pictures. These
exercised no small influence on the taste and style of the young
artist; but, true to his country, and with the happy inspiration
of genius, it was to Luis Tristan of Toledo, rather than to any
foreign master, that he directed his chief attention; and hence the
future chief of the Castilian school was enabled to combine with its
merits the excellencies of both the other great divisions of Spanish
art. At the end of five years spent in this manner, he married
Pacheco's daughter, who witnessed all his forty years' labours and
successes, and closed his dying eyes. At the age of twenty-three,
Velasquez, anxious to enlarge his acquaintance with the masterpieces
of other schools, went to Madrid; but after spending a few months
there, and at the Escurial, he returned to Seville--soon, however,
to be recalled at the bidding of the great minister and Mæcenas,
Olivarez. Now, in 1623, set in the tide of favour and of fame, which
henceforward was not to flag or ebb till the great painter lay
stretched, out of its reach, on the cold bank of death. During this
summer he painted the noble portrait of the king on horseback, which
was exhibited by royal order in front of the church of San Felipe,
and which caused the all-powerful Count-duke to exclaim, that until
now his majesty had never been painted. Charmed and delighted with
the picture and the painter, Philip declared no other artist should
in future paint his royal face; and Mr Stirling maliciously adds
that "this resolution he kept far more religiously than his marriage
vows, for he appears to have departed from it during the life-time
of his chosen artist, in favour only of Rubens and Crayer." (Vol.
ii. p. 592.) On the 31st of October 1623, Velasquez was formally
appointed painter in ordinary to the king, and in 1626 was provided
with apartments in the Treasury. To this period Mr Stirling assigns
his best likeness of the equestrian monarch, of which he says--"Far
more pleasing than any other representation of the man, it is also
one of the finest portraits in the world. The king is in the glow
of youth and health, and in the full enjoyment of his fine horse,
and the breeze blowing freshly from the distant hills; he wears dark
armour, over which flutters a crimson scarf; a hat with black plumes
covers his head, and his right hand grasps a truncheon."--(P. 595.)

In 1628, Velasquez had the pleasure of showing Rubens, who had come
to Madrid as envoy from the Low Countries, the galleries of that
city, and the wonders of the Escurial; and, following the advice
of that mighty master, he visited Italy the next year. On that
painter-producing soil, his steps were first turned to the city of
Titian; but the sun of art was going down over the quays and palaces
of once glorious Venice, and, hurrying through Ferrara and Bologna,
the eager pilgrim soon reached Rome. In this metropolis of religion,
learning, and art, the young Spaniard spent many a pleasant and
profitable month: nor, while feasting his eyes and storing his
memory with "its thousand forms of beauty and delight," did he allow
his pencil a perfect holiday. The Forge of Vulcan and Joseph's Coat
were painted in the Eternal City. After a few weeks at Naples, he
returned to Madrid in the spring of 1631. Portrait-painting for his
royal patron, who would visit his studio every day, and sit there
long hours, seems to have been now his main occupation; and now
was he able to requite the friendly aid he had received from the
Count-duke of Olivarez, whose image remains reflected on the stream
of time, not after the hideous caricature of Le Sage, but as limned
by the truthful--albeit grace-conferring--pencil of Velasquez.

In 1639, leaving king and courtiers, lords and ladies, and soaring
above the earth on which he had made his step so sure, Velasquez
aspired to the grandest theme of poet, moralist, or painter, and
nobly did his genius justify the flight. His Crucifixion is one
of the sublimest representations conceived by the intellect, and
portrayed by the hand of man, of that stupendous event. "Unrelieved
by the usual dim landscape, or lowering clouds, the cross in this
picture has no footing upon earth, but is placed on a plain dark
ground, like an ivory carving on its velvet pall. Never was that
great agony more powerfully depicted. The head of our Lord drops
on his right shoulder, over which falls a mass of dark hair, while
drops of blood trickle from his thorn-pierced brows. The anatomy of
the naked body and limbs is executed with as much precision as in
Cellini's marble, which may have served Velasquez as a model; and
the linen cloth wrapped about the loins, and even the fir-wood of
the cross, display his accurate attention to the smallest details of
a great subject."--(Vol. ii. p. 619.) This masterpiece now hangs in
the Royal Gallery of Spain at Madrid.

The all-powerful Olivarez underwent, in 1643, the fate of most
favourites, and experienced the doom denounced by the great English
satirist on "power too great to keep, or to resign." He had declared
his intention of making one Julianillo, an illegitimate child of no
one exactly knew who, his heir; had married him to the daughter of
the Constable of Castile, decked him with titles and honours, and
proposed to make him governor of the heir-apparent. The pencil of
Velasquez was employed to hand down to posterity the features of
this low-born cause of his great patron's downfall, and the portrait
of the ex-ballad singer in the streets of Madrid now graces the
collection of Bridgewater House. The disgrace of Olivarez served to
test the fine character of Velasquez, who not only sorrowed over his
patron's misfortunes, but had the courage to visit the disgraced
statesman in his retirement.

The triumphal entrance of Philip IV. into Lerida, the surrender of
Breda, and portraits of the royal family, exercised the invention
and pencil of Velasquez till the year 1648, when he was sent by
the king on a roving mission into Italy--not to teach the puzzled
sovereigns the mysterious privileges of self-government, but to
collect such works of art as his fine taste might think worthy of
transportation to Madrid. Landing at Genoa, he found himself in
presence of a troop of Vandyck's gallant nobles: hence he went to
Milan, Padua, and Venice. At the latter city he purchased for his
royal master two or three pictures of Tintoret's, and the Venus and
Adonis of Paul Veronese. But Rome, as in his previous visit, was the
chief object of his pilgrimage. Innocent X. welcomed him gladly,
and commanded him to paint, not only his own coarse features, but
the more delicate ones of Donna Olympia, his "sister-in-law and
mistress." So, at least, says our author; for the sake of religion
and human nature, we hope he is mistaken. For more than a year did
Velasquez sojourn in Rome, purchasing works of art, and enjoying
the society of Bernini and Nicolas Poussin, Pietro da Cortona and
Algardi. "It would be pleasing, were it possible, to draw aside
the dark curtain of centuries, and follow him into the palaces and
studios--to see him standing by while Claude painted, or Algardi
modelled, (enjoying the hospitalities of Bentivoglio, perhaps in
that fair hall glorious with Guido's recent fresco of Aurora)--or
mingling in the group that accompanied Poussin in his evening walks
on the terrace of Trinità de Monte."--(Vol. ii. p. 643.) Meanwhile
the king was impatiently waiting his return, and at last insisted
upon its being no further delayed; so in 1651 the soil of Spain was
once more trod by her greatest painter. Five years later, Velasquez
produced his extraordinary picture, Las Meniñas--the Maids of
Honour, extraordinary alike in the composition, and in the skill
displayed by the painter in overcoming its many difficulties. Dwarfs
and maids of honour, hounds and children, lords and ladies, pictures
and furniture, are all introduced into this remarkable picture, with
such success as to make many judges pronounce it to be Velasquez's
masterpiece, and Luca Giordano to christen it "the theology of
painting."

The Escurial, from whose galleries and cloisters we have been thus
lured by the greater glory of Velasquez, in 1656 demanded his
presence to arrange a large collection of pictures, forty-one of
which came from the dispersed and abused collection of the only
real lover of the fine arts who has sat on England's throne--that
martyr-monarch whom the pencil of Vandyck, and the pens of Lovelace,
Montrose, and Clarendon, have immortalised, though their swords
and counsels failed to preserve his life and crown. In 1659 the
cross of Santiago was formally conferred on this "king of painters,
and painter of kings;" and on St Prosper's day, in the Church of
the Carbonera, he was installed knight of that illustrious order,
the noblest grandees of Spain assisting at the solemn ceremonial.
The famous meeting on the Isle of Pheasants, so full of historic
interest, between the crowns and courts of Spain and France,
to celebrate the nuptials of Louis XIV. and Maria Theresa, was
destined to acquire an additional though melancholy fame, as the
last appearance of the great painter in public, and the possible
proximate cause of his death. To him, as aposentador-mayor, were
confided all the decorations and arrangements of this costly and
fatiguing pageant: he was also to find lodging on the road for
the king and the court; and some idea of the magnitude of his
official cares may be derived from the fact, that three thousand
five hundred mules, eighty-two horses, seventy coaches, and seventy
baggage-waggons, formed the train that followed the monarch out of
Madrid. On the 28th of June the court returned to Madrid, and on the
6th of August its inimitable painter expired.

The merits of Velasquez are now generally appreciated in England;
and the popular voice would, we think, ratify the enthusiastic yet
sober dictum of Wilkie, "In painting an intelligent portrait he
is nearly unrivalled." Yet we have seen how he could rise to the
highest subject of mortal imagination in the Crucifixion; and the
one solitary naked Venus, which Spanish art in four hundred years
produced, is his. Mr Stirling, though he mentions this picture
in the body of his book, assigns it no place in his valuable and
laboriously compiled catalogue, probably because he was unable to
trace its later adventures. Brought to England in 1814, and sold
for £500 to Mr Morritt, it still remains the gem of the library
at Rokeby. Long may the Spanish queen of love preside over the
beautiful bowers of that now classic retreat! We sum up our notice
of Velasquez in Mr Stirling's words:--"No artist ever followed
nature with more catholic fidelity; his cavaliers are as natural
as his boors; he neither refined the vulgar, nor vulgarised
the refined.... We know the persons of Philip IV. and Olivarez
as familiarly as if we had paced the avenues of the Pardo with
Digby and Howell, and perhaps we think more favourably of their
characters. In the portraits of the monarch and the minister,

    'The bounding steeds they pompously bestride,
    Share with their lords the pleasure and the pride,'

and enable us to judge of the Cordovese horse of that day, as
accurately as if we had lived with the horse-breeding Carthusians of
the Betis. And this painter of kings and horses has been compared,
as a painter of landscapes, to Claude; as a painter of low life,
to Teniers: his fruit-pieces equal those of Sanchez Cotan or Van
Kessel; his poultry might contest the prize with the fowls of
Hondekooter on their own dunghill; and his dogs might do battle with
the dogs of Sneyders."--(Vol. ii. p. 686.)

While Velasquez, at the height of his glory, was painting his
magnificent Crucifixion, a young lad was displaying hasty sketches
and immature daubs to the venders of old clothes, pots, and
vegetables, the gipsies and mendicant friars that frequented the
Feria, or weekly fair held in the market-place of All Saints, in
the beautiful and religious city of Seville. This was Bartolemè
Estevan Murillo, who, having studied for some time under Juan
del Castillo, on that master's removal to Cadiz in 1640, betook
himself to this popular resource of all needy Sevillian painters.
Struck, however, by the great improvement which travel had wrought
in the style of Pedro de Moya, who revisited Seville in 1642, the
young painter scraped up money sufficient to carry him to Madrid,
and, as he hoped, to Rome. But the kindness of Velasquez provided
him a lodging in his own house, and opened the galleries of the
Alcazar and the Escurial to his view. Here he pursued his studies
unremittingly, and, as he thought, with a success that excused the
trouble and expense of an Italian pilgrimage. Returning, therefore,
in 1645 to Seville, he commenced that career which led him, among
the painters of Spain, to European renown, second only to that of
Velasquez. The Franciscans of his native city have the credit of
first employing his young genius, and the eleven large pictures
with which he adorned their convent-walls at once established his
reputation and success. These were painted in what is technically
called his first or cold style; this was changed before 1650 into
his second, or warm style, which in its turn yielded to his last,
or vapoury style. So warm, indeed, had his colouring become, that
a Spanish critic, in the nervous phraseology of Spain, declared
his flesh-tints were now painted with blood and milk. In this style
did he paint for the chapter The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin, in
which the ladies of Seville admired and envied the roundness of a
ministering maiden's naked arm; and a large picture of St Anthony
of Padua, which still adorns the walls of the cathedral baptistery.
Of this famous gem some curious stories are told: Don Fernando
Farfan, for instance, relates that birds had been seen attempting
to perch upon some lilies in a vase by the side of the kneeling
saint; and Monsieur Viardot (_Musées d'Espagne_, p. 146) informs us
that a reverend canon, who showed him the picture, recounted how
that, in 1813, the Duke of Wellington offered to purchase it for as
many gold onzas as would cover its surface; while, in 1843, Captain
Widdrington was assured that a lord had expressed his readiness
to give £40,000 for the bird-deluding picture. The belief in the
gullibility of travellers is truly remarkable and wide-spread; thus,
at Genoa, in 1839, our excellent cicerone gratified us with the
information, that, sixteen years before, the English Duke Balfour
had in vain offered £1600 for Canova's beautiful basso-relievo of
the Virgin Clasping the Corpse of our Saviour, which graces the
ugly church of the poor-house in that superb city. In 1658, Murillo
laboured to establish a public academy of art; and, in spite of the
jealousies and contentions of rival artists, on the 1st of January
1660, he witnessed its inauguration. The rules were few and simple;
but the declaration to be signed by each member on admission would
rather astonish the directors of the Royal Academy in London. We
would recommend it to the consideration of those Protestant divines
who are so anxious to devise a new test of heresy in the Church
of England: thus it ran--"Praised be the most holy sacrament, and
the pure conception of Our Lady." Nothing, perhaps, can show more
strongly the immense influence religion exercised on art in Spain
than the second clause of this declaration. It was the favourite
dogma of Seville: for hundreds of years sermons were preached, books
were written, pictures painted, legends recorded in honour of Our
Lady's spotless conception; and round many a picture by Cano, or
Vargas, or Joanes, is yet to be read the magic words that had power
to electrify a populace,--"Sin Pecado Concebida." The institution
thus commenced flourished for many years, and answered the generous
expectations of its illustrious founder.

The attention of the pious Don Miguel Mañara de Leca, the
"benevolent Howard" of Seville, was attracted about 1661 to the
pitiable state of the brotherhood of the holy charity, and its
hospital of San Jorge: he resolved to restore it to its pristine
glory and usefulness; and, persevering against all discouragements
and difficulties, in less than twenty years, at an expense of
half-a-million of ducats, he accomplished his pious design. For the
restored church Murillo painted eleven pictures, of which eight,
according to Mr Stirling, are the finest works of the master.
Five of these were carried off by plundering Soult, but "the two
colossal compositions of Moses, and the Loaves and Fishes, still
hang beneath the cornices whence springs the dome of the church,
"like ripe oranges on the bough where they originally budded." Long
may they cover their native "walls, and enrich, as well as adorn,
the institution of Mañara! In the picture of the great miracle of
the Jewish dispensation, the Hebrew prophet stands beside the rock
in Horeb, with hands pressed together, and uplifted eyes, thanking
the Almighty for the stream which has just gushed forth at the
stroke of his mysterious rod.... As a composition, this wonderful
picture can hardly be surpassed. The rock, a huge, isolated, brown
crag, much resembles in form, size, and colour, that which is still
pointed out as the rock of Moses, by the Greek monks of the convent
of St Catherine, in the real wilderness of Horeb. It forms the
central object, rising to the top of the canvass, and dividing it
into two unequal portions. In front of the rock, the eye at once
singles out the erect figure of the prophet standing forward from
the throng; and the lofty emotion of that great leader, looking with
gratitude to heaven, is finely contrasted with the downward regards
of the multitude, forgetful of the Giver in the anticipation or
the enjoyment of the gift. Each head and figure is an elaborate
study; each countenance has a distinctive character, and even of
the sixteen vessels brought to the spring, no two are alike in
form."--(Vol. ii. p. 859.) But Cean Bermudez, who enjoyed the
privilege of seeing all these eight masterpieces hanging together
in their own sacred home, preferred The Prodigal's Return, and St
Elizabeth of Hungary--with whose touching history the eloquent
pens of the Count Montalembert and Mr A. Phillipps have made us
familiar--to all the rest.

The Franciscan convent, without the city walls, was yet more
fortunate than the hospital of Mañara, for it possessed upwards
of twenty of this religious painter's works. Now, not one remains
to dignify the ruined halls and deserted cloisters of that once
magnificent convent: but seventeen of these pictures are preserved
in the Seville Museum; among them Murillo's own favourite--that
which he used to call "his own picture"--the charity of St Thomas
of Villanueva. In 1678, Murillo painted three pictures for the
Hospital de los Venerables, two of which, the Mystery of the
Immaculate Conception, and St Peter Weeping, were placed in the
chapel. "The third adorned the refectory, and presented to the
gaze of the Venerables, during their repasts, the blessed Virgin
enthroned on clouds, with her divine Babe, who, from a basket borne
by angels, bestowed bread on three aged priests." These were nearly
his last works; for the art he so loved was now about to destroy her
favourite son: he was mounting a scaffolding to paint the higher
parts of a great altar-piece for the Capuchin church at Cadiz,
representing the espousals of St Catherine, when he stumbled, and
ruptured himself so severely, as to die of the injury. On the 3d of
April 1682, he expired in the arms of his old and faithful friend,
Don Justino Neve, and was buried in the parish church of St. Cruz, a
stone slab with his name, a skeleton and "Vive moriturus," marking
the spot--until the "Vandal" French destroyed the last resting-place
of that great painter, whose works they so unscrupulously
appropriated. Was the last Lord of Petworth aware of this short
epitaph, when he caused to be inscribed on the beautiful memorial to
his ancestors which adorns St Thomas's Chapel in Petworth Church,
the prophetic,[18] solemn words--"Mortuis moriturus?"

  [18] He died the year following.

We have ranked Murillo next to Velasquez: doubtless there are many
in England who would demur to this classification; and we own there
are charms in the style of the great religious painter, which it
would be vain to look for in any other master. In tenderness of
devotion, and a certain soft sublimity, his religious pictures are
unmatched; while in colouring, Cean Bermudez most justly says--"All
the peculiar beauties of the school of Andalusia--its happy use of
red and brown tints, the local colours of the region, its skill in
the management of drapery, its distant prospects of bare sierras
and smiling vales, its clouds, light and diaphanous as in nature,
its flowers and transparent waters, and its harmonious depth and
richness of tone--are to be found in full perfection in the works of
Murillo."--(Vol. ii. p. 903.) Mr Stirling draws a distinction, and
we think with reason, between the favourite Virgin of the Immaculate
Conception and the other Virgins of Murillo: the ἠθὸς of the former
is far more elevated and spiritualised than that of any of the
latter class; but, even in his most ordinary and mundane delineation
of the sinless Mary, how sweet, and pure, and holy, as well as
beautiful, does our Lord's mother appear! But perhaps it is as a
painter of children that Murillo is most appreciated in England; nor
can we wonder that such should be the case, when we remember what
the pictures are which have thus impressed Murillo on the English
mind. The St John Baptist with the Lamb, in the National Gallery;
Lord Westminster's picture of the same subject; the Baroness de
Rothschild's gem at Gunnersbury, Our Lord, the Good Shepherd, as a
Child: Lord Wemyss's hardly inferior repetition of it; the picture
of our Lord as a child, holding in his hands the crown of thorns,
in the College at Glasgow; with the other pictures, in private
collections, of our Lord and St John as children, have naturally
made Murillo to be regarded in England as emphatically the painter
of children: and how exquisite is his conception of the Divine Babe
and His saintly precursor! what a sublime consciousness of power,
what an expression of boundless love, are seen in the face of Him
who was yet

                    "a little child,
      Taught by degrees to pray
    By father dear, and mother mild,
      Instructed day by day."

The religious school of Spanish painting reached its acmé in
Murillo; and, at the risk of being accounted heterodox, we must,
in summing up his merits, express our difference from Mr Stirling
in one respect, and decline to rank the great Sevillian after any
of the Italian masters. Few of Murillo's drawings are known to be
in existence. Mr Stirling gives a list of such as he has been able
to discover, nearly all of which are at the Louvre. We believe,
in addition to those possessed by the British Museum and Mr Ford,
there are two in the collection at Belvoir Castle: one, a Virgin
and Child; the other, an old man--possibly St Francis--receiving a
flower from a naked child.

After Velasquez and Murillo, it may seem almost impertinent to talk
of the merits of other Spanish painters; yet Zurbaran and Cano,
Ribera and Coello, demand at least a passing notice. Francisco
de Zurbaran, often called the Caravaggio of Spain, was born in
Estremadura in 1598. His father, observing his turn for painting,
sent him to the school of Roelas, at Seville. Here, for nearly a
quarter of a century, he continued painting for the magnificent
cathedral, and the churches and religious houses of that fair city.
About 1625, he painted, for the college of St Thomas Aquinas,
an altar-piece, regarded by all judges as the finest of all his
works. It represents the angelic doctor ascending into the heavens,
where, on clouds of glory, the blessed Trinity and the Virgin wait
to receive him; below, in mid air, sit the four doctors of the
Church; and on the ground are kneeling the Emperor Charles V.,
with the founder of the college, Archbishop Diego de Deza, and a
train of ecclesiastics. Mr Stirling says of this singular picture,
"The colouring throughout is rich and effective, and worthy the
school of Roelas; the heads are all of them admirable studies;
the draperies of the doctors and ecclesiastics are magnificent
in breadth and amplitude of fold; the imperial mantle is painted
with Venetian splendour; and the street view, receding in the
centre of the canvass, is admirable for its atmospheric depth and
distance."--(Vol. ii. p. 770.) In 1650, Philip IV. invited him to
Madrid, and commanded him to paint ten pictures, representing the
labours of Hercules, for a room at Buen-retiro. Almost numberless
were the productions of his facile pencil, which, however, chiefly
delighted to represent, the legends of the Carthusian cloister,
and portray the gloomy features and sombre vestments of monks and
friars; yet those who have seen his picture of the Virgin with the
Infant Saviour and St John, at Stafford House, will agree with Mr
Stirling that, "unrivalled in such subjects of dark fanaticism,
Zurbaran could also do ample justice to the purest and most lovely
of sacred themes."--(Vol. 11. p. 775)

Alonzo Cano, born at Grenada in 1601, was, like Mrs Malaprop's
Cerberus, "three gentlemen in one;" that is, he was a great painter,
a great sculptor, and a great architect. As a painter, his powers
are shown in his full-length picture of the Blessed Virgin, with
the infant Saviour asleep on her knees, now in the Queen of Spain's
gallery; in six large works, representing passages in the life
of Mary Magdalene, which still adorn the great brick church of
Getafe, a small village near Madrid; and in his famous picture of
Our Lady of Belem, in the cathedral of Seville. Mr Stirling gives a
beautifully-executed print of this last Madonna, which, "in serene,
celestial beauty, is excelled by no image of the Blessed Virgin ever
devised in Spain."--(P. 803.)

Cano was, perhaps, even greater in sculpture than in painting;
and so fond of the former art, that, when wearied of pencil and
brush, he would call for his chisel, and work at a statue by way
of rest to his hands. On one of these occasions, a pupil venturing
to remark, that to substitute a mallet for a pencil was an odd sort
of repose, was silenced by Cano's philosophical reply,--"Blockhead,
don't you perceive that to create form and relief on a flat surface
is a greater labour than to fashion one shape into another?" An
image of the Blessed Virgin in the parish church at Lebrija, and
another in the sacristy of the Grenada cathedral, are said to
be triumphs of Spanish painted statuary.--(Vol. iii., p. 805)
After a life of strange vicissitudes, in the course of which, on
suspicion of having murdered his wife, he underwent the examination
by torture, he died, honoured and beloved for his magnificent
charities, and religious hatred of the Jews, in his native city, on
the 3d of October 1667.

The old Valencian town of Xativa claims the honour of producing
Josè de Ribera, el Spagnoletto; but though Spain gave him birth,
Italy gave him instruction, wealth, fame; and although in style he
is thoroughly Spanish, we feel some difficulty in writing of him as
belonging wholly to the Spanish school of art, so completely Italian
was he by nurture, long residence, and in his death.

Bred up in squalid penury, he appears to have looked upon the world
as not his friend, and in his subsequent good fortunes to have
revelled in describing with ghastly minuteness, and repulsive force,
all "the worst ills that flesh is heir to." We well recollect the
horror with which we gazed spell-bound on a series of his horrors
in the Louvre--faugh! At Gosford House are a series of Franciscan
monks, such as only a Spanish cloister could contain, painted with
an evident fidelity to nature, and the minutest details of dress
that is almost offensive--even the black dirt under the unwashed
thumb nail is carefully represented by his odiously-accurate and
powerful pencil.

    "Non ragioniam di lor
     Ma guada e passa."

Had the bold buccaneers of the seventeenth century required the
services of a painter to perpetuate the memory of their inventive
brutality, and inconceivable atrocities, they would have found in El
Spagnoletto an artist capable of delineating the agonies of their
victims, and by taste and disposition not indisposed to their way of
life. Yet in his own peculiar line he was unequalled, and his merits
as a painter will always be recognised by every judge of art. He
died at Naples, the scene of his triumphs, in 1656.

The name of Claudio Coello is associated with the Escurial, and
should have been introduced into the sketch we were giving of its
artists, when the mighty reputation of Velasquez and Murillo broke
in upon our order. He was born at Madrid about the middle of the
seventeenth century, and studied in the school of the younger Rigi.
In 1686 he succeeded Herrera as painter in ordinary to Charles
II. This monarch had erected an altar in the great sacristy of
the Escurial, to the miraculous bleeding wafer known as the Santa
Forma; and on the death of its designer, Rigi, Coello was called
upon to paint a picture that should serve as a veil for the host. On
a canvass six yards high, by three wide, he executed an excellent
work, representing the king and his court adoring the miraculous
wafer, which is held aloft by the prior. This picture established
his reputation, and in 1691 the chapter of Toledo, still the great
patrons of art, appointed him painter to their cathedral. Coello was
a most careful and painstaking painter, and his pictures, says our
author, (vol. iii., p. 1018) "with much of Cano's grace of drawing,
have also somewhat of the rich tones of Murillo, and the magical
effect of Velasquez." He died, it is said, of disappointment at the
success of his foreign rival, Luca Giordano, in 1693.

With Charles II. passed away the Spanish sceptre from the house of
Austria, nor, according to Mr Stirling, would the Genius of Painting
remain to welcome the intrusive Bourbons:--

    Old times were changed, old manners gone,
    A stranger filled the Philips' throne;
    And art, neglected and oppressed,
    Wished to be with them, and at rest.

But we must say that Mr Stirling, in his honest indignation against
France and Frenchmen, has exaggerated the demerits of the Bourbon
kings. Spanish art had been steadily declining for years before
they, with ill-omened feet, crossed the Pyrenees. It was no Bourbon
prince that brought Luca da Presto from Naples to teach the painters
of Spain "how to be content with their faults, and get rid of their
scruples;" and if the schools of Castile and Andalusia had ceased
to produce such artists as those whose praises Mr Stirling has so
worthily recorded, it appears scant justice to lay the blame on the
new royal family. _Pictor nascitur, non fit_--no, not even by the
wielders of the Spanish sceptre. In a desire to patronise art, and
in munificence towards its possessors, Philip V., Ferdinand VI.,
and Charles III., fell little short of their Hapsburg predecessors,
but they had no longer the same material to work upon. The post
which Titian had filled could find no worthier holder under Charles
III., than Rafael Mengs, whom not only ignorant Bourbons, but the
_conoscenti_ of Europe regarded as the mighty Venetian's equal;
and Philip V. not only invited Hovasse, Vanloo, Procaccini, and
other foreign artists to his court, but added the famous collection
of marbles belonging to Christina of Sweden to those acquired by
Velasquez, at an expense of twelve thousand doubloons. To him, also,
is due the completion of the palace of Aranjuez, and the design
of La Granja; nor, when fire destroyed the Alcazar, did Philip V.
spare his diminished treasures, in raising up on its time-hallowed
site a palace which, in Mr Stirling's own words, "in spite of its
narrowed proportions, is still one of the largest and most imposing
in Europe."--(Vol. iii., p. 1163.)

Ferdinand VI. built, at the enormous expense of nineteen millions
of reals the convent of nuns of the order of St Vincent de Sales,
and employed in its decoration all the artistic talent that Spain
then could boast of. Nor can he be blamed if that was but little;
for if royal patronage can produce painters of merit, this monarch,
by endowing the Academy of St Ferdinand with large revenues, and
housing it in a palace, would have revived the glories of Spanish
art.

His successor, Charles III., an artist of some repute himself,
sincerely loved and generously fostered the arts. While King of the
Two Sicilies, he had dragged into the light of day the long-lost
wonders of Herculaneum and Pompeii; and when called to the throne
of Spain and the Indies, he manifested his sense of the obligations
due from royalty to art, by conferring fresh privileges on the
Academy of St Ferdinand, and founding two new academies, one in
Valencia, the other in Mexico. If Mengs and Tiepolo, and other
mediocrities, were the best living painters his patronage could
discover, it is evident from his ultra-protectionist decree against
the exportation of Murillo's, pictures, that he fully appreciated
the works of the mighty dead; and, had his spirit animated Spanish
officials, many a masterpiece that now mournfully, and without
meaning, graces the Hermitage at St Petersburg, or the Louvre at
Paris, would still be hanging over the altar, or adorning the
refectory for which it was painted, at Seville or Toledo. Even
Charles IV., "the drivelling tool of Godoy," was a collector of
pictures, and founder of an academy. In his disastrous reign
flourished Francisco Goya y Lucientes, the last Spanish painter who
has obtained a niche in the Temple of Fame. Though portraits and
caricatures were his forte, in that venerable museum of all that is
beautiful in Spanish Art--the cathedral at Toledo--is to be seen a
fine religious production of his pencil, representing the Betrayal
of our Lord. But he loved painting at, better than for the church;
and those who have examined and wondered at the grotesque satirical
carvings of the stalls in the cathedral at Manchester, will be
able to form some idea of Goya's anti-monkish caricatures. Not
Lord Mark Kerr, when giving the rein to his exuberant fancy, ever
devised more ludicrous or repulsive "monsters" than this strange
successor to the religious painters of orthodox Spain. But when
the vice, and intrigues, and imbecility of the royal knives and
fools, whom his ready graver had exposed to popular ridicule, had
yielded to the unsupportable tyranny of French invaders, the same
indignant spirit that hurried the water-carriers of Madrid into
unavailing conflict with the troops of Murat, guided his caustic
hand against the fierce oppressors of his country; and, while
Gilray was exciting the angry contempt of all true John Bulls at
the impudence of the little Corsican upstart, Goya was appealing
to his countrymen's bitter experience of the tender mercies of the
French invaders. He died at Bordeaux in 1828. Mr Stirling closes his
labours with a graceful tribute to those of Cean Bermudez, "the able
and indefatigable historian of Spanish art, to whose rich harvest of
valuable materials I have ventured to add the fruit of my own humble
gleanings--" a deserved tribute, and most handsomely rendered. But,
before we dismiss this pleasant theme of Spanish art, we would add
one artist more to the catalogue of Spanish painters--albeit, that
artist is a Bourbon!

Near the little town of Azpeitia, in Biscay, stands the magnificent
college of the Jesuits, built on the birth-place of Ignatius Loyola.
Here, in a low room at the top of the building, are shown a piece
of the bed in which he died, and his autograph; and here among its
cool corridors and ever-playing fountains, in 1839, was living the
royal painter--the Infante Don Sebastian. A strange spectacle,
truly, did that religious house present in the summer of 1839:
wild Biscayan soldiers and dejected Jesuits, red boynas and black
cowls, muskets and crucifixes, oaths and benedictions, crossed and
mingled with each other in picturesque, though profane disorder;
and here, released from the cares of his military command, and free
to follow the bent of his disposition, the ex-commander-in-chief
of the Carlist forces was quietly painting altar-pieces, and
dashing off caricatures. In the circular church which, of exquisite
proportions, forms the centre of the vast pile, and is beautiful
with fawn-coloured marble and gold, hung a large and well-painted
picture of his production; and those who are curious in such matters
may see a worse specimen of his royal highness's skill in Pietro
di Cortona's church of St Luke at Rome. On one side of the altar
is Canova's beautiful statue of Religion preaching; on the other
the Spanish prince's large picture of the Crucifixion; but, alas!
it must be owned that the inspiration which guided Velasquez to
his conception of that sublime subject was denied to the royal
amateur. In the academy of St Luke, adjoining the church, is a
well-executed bust of Canova, by the Spanish sculptor Alvarez. We
suspect that, like Goya, the Infante would do better to stick to
caricature, in which branch of art many a pleasant story is told of
his proficiency. Seated on a rocky plateau, which, if commanding
a view of Bilbao and its defenders, was also exposed to their
fire, 'tis said the royal artist would amuse himself and his staff
with drawing the uneasy movements, and disturbed countenances, of
some unfortunate London reporters, who, attached to the Carlist
headquarters, were invited by the commander-in-chief to attend his
person, and enjoy the perilous honour of his company. Be this,
however, as it may, we think we have vindicated the claim of one
living Bourbon prince to be admitted into the roll of Spanish
painters in the next edition of the _Annals_.

In these tumultuous days, when

  "Royal heads are haunted like a maukin,"

over half the Continent, and even in steady England grave
merchants and wealthy tradesmen are counselling together on how
little their sovereign can be clothed and fed, and all things are
being brought to the vulgar test of _L. s. d._, it is pleasant to
turn to the artistic annals of a once mighty empire like Spain, and
see how uniformly, for more than five hundred years, its monarchs
have been the patrons, always munificent, generally discriminating,
of the fine arts--how, from the days of Isabella the Catholic, to
those of Isabella the Innocent, the Spanish sceptre has courted,
not disdained, the companionship of the pencil and the chisel.
Mr Stirling has enriched his pages with many an amusing anecdote
illustrative of this royal love of art, and suggestive, alas! of
the painful reflection, that the future annalist of the artists of
England will find great difficulty in scraping together half-a-dozen
stories of a similar kind. With the one striking exception of
Charles I., we know not who among our sovereigns can be compared,
as a patron of art, to any of the Spanish sovereigns, from Charles
V. of the Austrian to Charles III. of the Bourbon race. Lord Hervey
has made notorious George II's ignorance and dislike of art. Among
the many noble and kingly qualities of his grandson, we fear a
love and appreciation of art may not be reckoned; and although, in
his intercourse with men of genius, George IV. was gracious and
generous, what can be said in favour of his taste and discernment?
The previous life of William IV., the mature age at which he
ascended the throne, and the troublous character of his reign,
explain why art received but slight countenance from the court of
the frank and noble-hearted Sailor Prince; but we turn with hope to
the future. The recent proceedings in the Court of Chancery have
made public a fact, already known to many, that her Majesty wields
with skilful hand a graceful graver, and the Christmas plays acted
at Windsor are a satisfactory proof that English art and genius are
not exiled from England's palaces. The professors, then, of that art
which Velasquez and Rubens, Murillo and Vandyck practised, shall yet
see that the Crown of England is not only in ancient legal phrase,
"the Fountain of Honour," but that it loves to direct its grateful
streams in their honoured direction. Free was the intercourse,
unfettered the conversation, independent the relations, between
Titian and Charles V., Velasquez and Philip IV.; let us hope that
Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, will yet witness a revival
of those palmy days of English art, when Inigo Jones, and Vandyck,
and Cowley, Waller, and Ben Jonson, shed a lustre on the art-loving
court of England!

The extracts we have given from Mr Stirling's work will have
sufficiently shown the scope of the _Annals_, and the spirit and
style in which they are written. There is no tedious, inflexible,
though often unmanageable leading idea, or theory of art, running
through these lively volumes. In the introduction, whatever is to
be said on the philosophy of Spanish art is carefully collected,
and the reader is thenceforward left at liberty to carry on the
conclusions of the introduction with him in his perusal of the
_Annals_, or to drop them at the threshold. We would, however,
strongly recommend all who desire to appreciate Spanish art, never
to forget that she owes all her beauty and inspiration to Spanish
nature and Spanish religion. Remember this, O holyday tourist along
the Andalusian coast, or more adventurous explorer of Castile and
Estremadura, and you will not be disappointed with her productions.
Mr Stirling has not contented himself with doing ample justice to
the great painters, and slurring over the comparatively unknown
artists, whose merits are in advance of their fame, but has embraced
in his careful view the long line of Spanish artists who have
flourished or faded in the course of nearly eight hundred years; and
he has accomplished this difficult task, not in the plodding spirit
of a Dryasdust, or with the curt dulness of a catalogue-monger,
but with the discriminating good taste of an accomplished English
gentleman, and in a style at once racy and rhetorical. There are
whole pages in the _Annals_ as full of picturesque beauty as the
scenes or events they describe, and of melody, as an Andalusian
summer's eve; indeed, the vigorous fancy and genial humour of
the author have, on some few occasions, led him to stray from
those strict rules of ἀιδὼς, which we are old-fashioned enough
to wish always observed. But where the charms and merits are so
great, and so many, and the defects so few and so small, we may
safely leave the discovery of the latter to the critical reader, and
satisfy our conscience by expressing a hope that, when Mr Stirling
next appears in the character of author--a period not remote, we
sincerely trust--he will have discarded those few scentless flowers
from his literary garden, and present us with a bouquet--

    "Full of sweet buds and roses,
     A box where sweets compacted lie."

But if he never again put pen to paper, in these annals of the
artists of Spain he has given to the reading public a work which,
for utility of design, patience of research, and grace of language,
merits and has won the highest honours of authorship.



THE DODO AND ITS KINDRED.[19]

  [19] _The Dodo and its Kindred; or, the History, Affinities, and
  Osteology of the Dodo, Solitaire, and other Extinct Birds of the
  Islands Mauritius, Rodriguez, and Bourbon._ By H. E. STRICKLAND,
  M.A. F.G.S., F.R.G.S., President of the Ashmolean Society, &c., and
  A. G. MELVILLE, M.D., Edinburgh, M.R.C. One vol., royal quarto:
  London, 1848.


What was the Dodo? When was the Dodo? Where is the Dodo? are all
questions, the first more especially, which it is fully more easy
to ask than answer. Whoever has looked through books on natural
history--for example, that noted but now scarce instructor of our
early youth, the _Three Hundred Animals_--must have observed a
somewhat ungainly creature, with a huge curved bill, a shortish
neck, scarcely any wings, a plumy tuft upon the back--considerably
on the off-side, though pretending to be a tail,--and a very
shapeless body, extraordinarily large and round about the hinder
end. This anomalous animal being covered with feathers, and having,
in addition to the other attributes above referred to, only two
legs, has been, we think justly, regarded as a bird, and has
accordingly been named the Dodo. But why it should be so named
is another of the many mysterious questions, which require to be
considered in the history of this unaccountable creature. No one
alleges, nor can we conceive it possible, that it claims kindred
with either of the only two human beings we ever heard of who
bore the name: "And after him (Adino the Eznite) was Eleazar the
son of Dodo, the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men with David,
when they defied the Philistines that were there gathered together
to battle, and the men of Israel were gone away." Our only other
human Dodo belonged to the fair sex, and was the mother of the
famous Zoroaster, who flourished in the days of Darius Hystaspes,
and brought back the Persians to their ancient fire-worship, from
the adoration of the twinkling stars. The name appears to have
been dropped by both families, as if they were somewhat ashamed of
it; and we feel assured that of such of our readers as admit that
Zoroaster must have had a mother of some sort, very few really
remember now-a-days that her name was Dodo. There were no baptismal
registers in those times; or, if such existed, they were doubtless
consumed in the "great fire"--a sort of periodical, it may be
providential, mode of shortening the record, which seems to occur
from time to time in all civilised countries.

But while the creature in question,--we mean the feathered
biped--has been continuously presented to view in those "vain
repetitions" which unfortunately form the mass of our information in
all would-be popular works on natural history, we had actually long
been at a stand-still in relation to its essential attributes--the
few competent authorities who had given out their opinion upon this,
as many thought, stereotyped absurdity, being so disagreed among
themselves as to make confusion worse confounded. The case, indeed,
seemed desperate; and had it not been that we always entertained a
particular regard for old Clusius, (of whom by-and-by,) and could
not get over the fact that a Dodo's head existed in the Ashmolean
Museum, Oxford, and a Dodo's foot in the British Museum, London,
we would willingly have indulged the thought that the entire Dodo
was itself a dream. But, shaking off the cowardly indolence which
would seek to shirk the investigation of so great a question, let us
now inquire into a piece of ornithological biography, which seemed
so singularly to combine the familiar with the fabulous. Thanks
to an accomplished and persevering naturalist of our own day--one
of the most successful and assiduous inquirers of the younger
generation--we have now all the facts, and most of the fancies,
laid before us in a splendid royal quarto volume, just published,
with numerous plates, devoted to the history and illustration of
the "Dodo and its Kindred." It was, in truth, the latter term that
cheered our heart, and led us again towards a subject which had
previously produced the greatest despondency; for we had always,
though most erroneously, fancied that the great misformed lout of
our _Three Hundred Animals_ was all alone in the wide world, unable
to provide for himself, (and so, fortunately, without a family,)
and had never, in truth, had either predecessors or posterity. Mr
Strickland, however, has brought together the _disjecta membra_ of
a family group, showing not only fathers and mothers, sisters and
brothers, but cousins, and kindred of all degrees. Their sedate and
somewhat sedentary mode of life is probably to be accounted for,
not so much by their early habits as their latter end. Their legs
are short, their wings scarcely existant, but they are prodigiously
large and heavy in the hinder-quarters; and organs of flight would
have been but a vain thing for safety, as they could not, in such
wooded countries as these creatures inhabited, have been made
commensurate with the uplifting of such solid bulk, placed so far
behind that centre of gravity where other wings are worked. We can
now sit down in Mr Strickland's company, to discuss the subject, not
only tranquilly, but with a degree of cheerfulness which we have not
felt for many a day: thanks to his kindly consideration of the Dodo
and "its kindred."

The geographical reader will remember that to the eastward of the
great, and to ourselves nearly unknown, island of Madagascar, there
lies a small group of islands of volcanic origin, which, though not
exactly contiguous among themselves, are yet nearer to each other
than to the greater island just named, and which is interposed
between them and the coast of Southern Africa. They are named
Rodriguez, Bourbon, and Mauritius, or the Isle of France. There is
proof that not fewer than four distinct species of large-bodied,
short-winged birds, of the Dodo type, were their inhabitants in
comparatively recent times, and have now become utterly extinct. We
say utterly, because neither proof nor vestige of their existence
elsewhere has been at any time afforded; and the comparatively
small extent, and now peopled state of the islands in question,
(where they are no longer known,) make the continuous and unobserved
existence of these birds, so conspicuous in size and slow of foot,
impossible.

Now, it is this recent and total extinction which renders the
subject one of more than ordinary interest. Death is an admitted
law of nature, in respect to the _individuals_ of all species.
Geology, "dragging at each remove a lengthened chain" has shown how,
at different and distant eras, innumerable tribes have perished
and been supplanted, or at least replaced, by other groups of
species, entire races, better fitted for the great climatic and
other physical changes, which our earth's surface has undergone
from time to time. How these changes were brought about, many,
with more or less success, (generally less,) have tried to say.
Organic remains--that is, the fossilised remnants of ancient
species--sometimes indicate a long continuance of existence,
generation after generation living in tranquillity, and finally
sinking in a quiet grave; while other examples show a sudden and
violent death, in tortuous and excited action, as if they had been
almost instantaneously overwhelmed and destroyed by some great
catastrophe.

Several local extinctions of elsewhere existing species are known
to naturalists--such as those of the beaver, the bear, and the
wolf, which no longer occur in Great Britain, though historically
known, as well as organically proved by recent remains, to have
lived and died among us. Their extinction was slow and gradual,
and resulted entirely from the inroads which the human race--that
is, the increase of population, and the progress of agriculture
and commerce--necessarily made upon their numbers, which thus
became "_few_ by degrees, and beautifully less." The beaver might
have carried on business well enough, in his own quiet way,
although frequently incommoded by the love of peltry on the part
of a hat-wearing people; but it is clear that no man with a small
family, and a few respectable farm-servants, could either permit
a large and hungry wolf to be continually peeping at midnight
through the key-hole of the nursery, or allow a brawny bruin to
snuff too frequently under the kitchen door, (after having hugged
the watch-dog to death,) when the serving-maids were at supper. The
extirpation, then, of at least two of those quondam British species
became a work of necessity and mercy, and might have been tolerated
even on a Sunday between sermons--especially as naturalists have it
still in their power to study the habits of similar wild beasts, by
no means yet extinct, in the neighbouring countries of France and
Germany.

But the death of the Dodo and its kindred is a more affecting fact,
as involving the extinction of an entire race, root and branch, and
proving that death is a law of the _species_, as well as of the
individuals which compose it,--although the life of the one is so
much more prolonged than that of the other that we can seldom obtain
any positive proof of its extinction, except by the observance of
geological eras. Certain other still existing species, well known
to naturalists, may be said to be, as it were, just hovering on
the brink of destruction. One of the largest and most remarkable
of herbivorous animals--a species of wild cattle, the aurochs
or European bison (_B. priscus_)--exists now only in the forest
of Bialowicksa, from whence the Emperor of Russia has recently
transmitted a living pair to the Zoological Society of London.
Several kinds of birds are also evidently on their last legs. For
example, a singular species of parrot, (_Nestor productus_,) with
the termination of the upper mandible much attenuated, peculiar to
Phipps's Island, near Norfolk Island, has recently ceased to exist
there in the wild state, and is now known as a living species only
from a few surviving specimens kept in cages, and which refuse to
breed. The burrowing parrot from New Zealand is already on the road
to ruin; and more than one species of that singular and wingless
bird, called _Apteryx_, also from the last-named island, may be
placed in the same category. Even in our own country, if the landed
proprietors were to yield to the clamour of the Anti-Game-Law
League, the red grouse or moor-game might cease to be, as they occur
nowhere else on the known earth save in Britain and the Emerald Isle.

The geographical distribution of animals, in general, has been
made conformable to laws which we cannot fathom. A mysterious
relationship exists between certain organic structures and those
districts of the earth's surface which they inhabit. Certain
extensive groups, in both the animal and vegetable kingdom,
are found to be restricted to particular continents, and their
neighbouring islands. Of some the distribution is very extensive,
while others are totally unknown except within a limited space, such
as some solitary isle,

  "Placed far amid the melancholy main."

     "In the present state of science," says Mr Strickland, "we must
     be content to admit the existence of this law, without being
     able to enunciate its preamble. It does _not_ imply that organic
     distribution depends on soil and climate; for we often find a
     perfect identity of these conditions in opposite hemispheres,
     and in remote continents, whose faunæ and floræ are almost
     wholly diverse. It does not imply that allied but distinct
     organisms have been adduced, by generation or spontaneous
     development, from the same original stock; for (to pass over
     other objections) we find detached volcanic islets, which have
     been ejected from beneath the ocean, (such as the Galapagos,
     for instance,) inhabited by terrestrial forms allied to those
     of the nearest continent, though hundreds of miles distant, and
     evidently never connected with them. But this fact may indicate
     that the Creator, in forming new organisms to discharge the
     functions required from time to time by the ever vacillating
     balance of nature, has thought fit to preserve the regularity
     of the system by modifying the types of structure already
     established in the adjacent localities, rather than to proceed
     _per saltum_ by introducing forms of more foreign aspect."

In conformity with this relation between geographical distribution
and organic structure, it has been ascertained that a small portion
of the indigenous animals and plants of the islands of Rodriguez,
Bourbon, and the Isle of France, are either allied to or identical
with the productions of continental Africa, a larger portion with
those of Madagascar, while certain species are altogether peculiar
to the insular group above named.

     "And as these three islands form a detached cluster, as compared
     to other lands, so do we find in them a peculiar group of birds,
     specifically different in each island, yet allied together in
     their general characters, and remarkably isolated from any
     known forms in other parts of the world. These birds were of
     large size and grotesque proportions, the wings too short and
     feeble for flight, the plumage loose and decomposed, and the
     general aspect suggestive of gigantic immaturity. Their history
     is as remarkable as their origin. About two centuries ago,
     their native isles were first colonised by man, by whom these
     strange creatures were speedily exterminated. So rapid and so
     complete was their extinction, that the vague descriptions given
     of them by early navigators were long regarded as fabulous or
     exaggerated; and these birds, almost contemporaries of our
     great-grandfathers, became associated in the minds of many
     persons with the griffin and the phœnix of mythological
     antiquity."

The aim and object of Mr Strickland's work is to vindicate the
honesty of the rude voyagers of the seventeenth century; to collect
together the scattered evidence regarding the Dodo and its kindred;
to describe and depict the few anatomical fragments which are still
extant of those lost species; to invite scientific travellers to
further and more minute research; and to infer, from the authentic
data, now in hand, the probable rank and position of these creatures
in the scale of nature. We think he has achieved his object very
admirably, and has produced one of the best and most interesting
monographs with which it is our fortune to be acquainted.

So far as we can see, the extension of man's more immediate
influence and agency is the sole cause of the disappearance of
species in modern times--at least we have no proof that any of these
species have perished by what can be called a catastrophe: this is
well exemplified by what we now know of the Dodo and its kindred.

The islands of Mauritius and Bourbon were discovered in the
sixteenth century, (authorities differ as to the precise period,
which they vary from 1502 to 1545,) by Pedro Mascaregnas, a
Portuguese, who named the latter after himself; while he called
the former Cerne, a term applied by Pliny to an island in another
quarter. Of this Cerne nothing definite was ascertained till the
year 1598, when the Dutch, under Jacob Cornelius Neck, finding it
uninhabited, took possession, and changed its name to Mauritius. In
the narrative of the voyage, of which there are several accounts in
different tongues, we find the following notice:--

     "This island, besides being very fertile in terrestrial
     products, feeds vast numbers of birds, such as turtle-doves,
     which occur in such plenty that three of our men sometimes
     captured one hundred and fifty in half a day, and might easily
     have taken more by hand, or killed them with sticks, if we
     had not been overloaded with the burden of them. Grey parrots
     are also common there, and other birds, besides a large kind
     bigger than our swans, with large heads, half of which is
     covered with skin like a hood. These birds want wings, in
     place of which are three or four thickish feathers. The tail
     consists of a few slender curved feathers of a gray colour. We
     called them _Walckvogel_, for this reason, that, the longer
     they were boiled, the tougher and more uneatable they became.
     Their stomachs, however, and breasts, were easy to masticate.
     Another reason for the name was that we had an abundance of
     turtle-doves, of a much sweeter and more agreeable flavour."--De
     Bry's _India Orientalis_, (1601,) pars v. p. 7.

These walckvogel were the birds soon afterwards called Dodos. The
description given by Clusius, in his _Exotica_, (1605,) is chiefly
taken from one of the published accounts of Van Neck's voyage, but
he adds the following notice, as from personal observation:--

     "After I had written down the history of this bird as well
     as I could, I happened to see in the house of Peter Pauwius,
     Professor of Medicine in the University of Leyden, a leg cut off
     at the knee, and recently brought from the Mauritius. It was
     not very long, but rather exceeded four inches from the knee
     to the bend of the foot. Its thickness, however, was great,
     being nearly four inches in circumference; and it was covered
     with numerous scales, which in front were wider and yellow, but
     smaller and dusky behind. The upper part of the toes was also
     furnished with single broad scales, while the lower part was
     wholly callous. The toes were rather short for so thick a leg:
     the claws were all thick, hard, black, less than an inch long;
     but the claw of the hind toe was longer than the rest, and
     exceeded an inch."

A Dutch navigator, Heemskerk, remained nearly three months in the
Mauritius, on his homeward voyage in 1602; and in a published
journal kept by Reyer Cornelisz, we read of _Wallichvogels_, and
a variety of other game. One of Heemskerk's captains, Willem van
West-Zanen by name, also left a journal--apparently not published
until 1648--at which time it was edited in an enlarged form by H.
Soeteboom. We there find repeated mention of _Dod-aarsen_ or Dodos;
and the sailors seem to have actually revelled in these birds,
without suffering from surfeit or nausea like Van Neck's crew. As
this tract is very rare, and has never appeared in an English form,
we shall avail ourselves of Mr Strickland's translation of a few
passages bearing on the subject in question:--

     "The sailors went out every day to hunt for birds and other
     game, such as they could find on land, while they became less
     active with their nets, hooks, and other fishing-tackle. No
     quadrupeds occur there except cats, though our countrymen have
     subsequently introduced goats and swine. The herons were less
     tame than the other birds, and were difficult to procure,
     owing to their flying amongst the thick branches of the trees.
     They also caught birds which some name _Dod-aarsen_, others
     _Dronten_. When Jacob Van Neck was here, these birds were called
     _Wallich-vogels_, because even a long boiling would scarcely
     make them tender, but they remained tough and hard, with the
     exception of the breast and belly, which were very good; and
     also because, from the abundance of turtle-doves which the men
     procured, they became disgusted with dodos. The figure of these
     birds is given in the accompanying plate: they have great heads,
     with hoods thereon; they are without wings or tail, and have
     only little winglets on their sides, and four or five feathers
     behind, more elevated than the rest; they have beaks and feet,
     and commonly, in the stomach, a stone the size of a fist....

     "The dodos, with their round sterns, (for they were well
     fattened,) were also obliged to turn tail; everything that could
     move was in a bustle; and the fish, which had lived in peace for
     many a year, were pursued into the deepest water-pools....

     "On the 25th July, William and his sailors brought some dodos,
     which were very fat; the whole crew made an ample meal from
     three or four of them, and a portion remained over.... They
     sent on board smoked fish, salted dodos, land-tortoises, and
     other game, which supply was very acceptable. They were busy
     for some days bringing provisions to the ship. On the 4th of
     August, William's men brought fifty large birds on board the
     _Bruyn-Vis_; among them were twenty-four or twenty-five dodos,
     so large and heavy, that they could not eat any two of them for
     dinner, and all that remained over was salted.

     "Another day, Hoogeven (William's supercargo) set out from the
     tent with four seamen, provided with sticks, nets, muskets, and
     other necessaries for hunting. They climbed up mountain and
     hill, roamed through forest and valley, and, during the three
     days that they were out, they captured another half-hundred
     of birds, including a matter of twenty dodos, all which they
     brought on board and salted. Thus were they, and the other crews
     in the fleet, occupied in fowling and fishing."

In regard to the appellations of these birds, it is not altogether
easy to determine the precise date at which the synonymous term
_Dodars_, from which our name of Dodo is by some derived, was
introduced. It seems first to occur in the journal of Willem van
West-Zanen; but that journal, though written in 1603, appears to
have remained unpublished till 1648, and the name may have been
an interpolation by his editor, Soeteboom. Matelief's Journal,
also, which makes mention of _Dodaersen_, otherwise _Dronten_, was
written in 1606, and Van der Hagen's in 1607; but Mr Strickland has
been unable to find an edition of either work of earlier date than
1646, and so the occurrence of these words may be likewise due to
the officiousness of editors. Perhaps the earliest use of the word
Dodars may date from the publication of Verhuffen's voyage, (1613,)
where, however, it occurs under the corrupt form of _Totersten_.
There seems little doubt that the name of Dodo is derived from
the Dutch root, _Dodoor_, which signifies _sluggard_, and is
appropriate to the leisurely gait and heavy aspect of the creatures
in question. Dodars is probably a homely or familiar phrase among
Dutch sailors, and may be regarded as more expressive than elegant.
Our own Sir Thomas Herbert was the first to use the name of Dodo
in its modern form, and he tells us that it is a Portuguese word.
_Doudo_, in that language, certainly signifies "foolish," or
"simple," and might have been well applied to the unwary habits
and defenceless condition of these almost wingless and totally
inexperienced species; but, as none of the Portuguese voyagers seem
to have mentioned the Dodo by any name whatever, nor even to have
visited the Mauritius, after their first discovery of the island by
Pedro Mascaregnas already named, it appears far more probable that
Dodars is a genuine Dutch term, altered, and it may be amended, by
Sir Thomas Herbert, to suit his own philological fancies.

The Dutch, indeed, seem to have been inspired with a genuine love
of Dodos, and never allowed even the cooing of the delicately
tender turtle-doves to prevent their laying in an ample store of
the more solid, if less sentimental species. Thus, Van der Hagen,
who commanded two ships which remained for some weeks at the
Mauritius in 1607, not only feasted his crews on great abundance of
"tortoises, _dodars_, gray parroquets, and other game," but salted
large quantities, for consumption during the voyage. Verhuffen
touched at the same island in 1611, and it is in his narrative
(published at Frankfort in 1613) that Dodos are called _Totersten_.
He describes them as having--

     "A skin like a monk's cowl on the head, and no wings; but, in
     place of them, about five or six yellow feathers: likewise, in
     place of a tail, are four or five crested feathers. In colour
     they are gray; men call them _Totersten_ or _Walckvögel_;
     they occur there in great plenty, insomuch that the Dutch
     daily caught and ate many of them. For not only these, but in
     general all the birds there, are so tame that they killed the
     turtle-doves, as well as the other wild pigeons and parrots,
     with sticks, and caught them by the hand. They also captured the
     totersten or walckvögel with their hands; but were obliged to
     take good care that these birds did not bite them on the arms or
     legs with their beaks, which are very strong, thick, and hooked;
     for they are wont to bite desperately hard."

We are glad to be informed, by the above, of this attempt at
independence, or something at least approaching to the defensive
system. It forms an additional title, on the part of the Dodo, to be
regarded, at all events by the Dutch _cuisiniers_, as "_une pièce de
resistance_."

Sir Thomas Herbert, already named, visited the Mauritius in 1627,
and found it still uninhabited by man. In his _Relation of some
yeares' Travaile_, which, for the amusement of his later years, he
seems to have repeatedly rewritten for various editions, extending
from 1634 to 1677, he both figures and describes our fat friend. His
narration is as follows:--

     "The dodo, a bird the Dutch call walckvögel or dod-eersen:
     her body is round and fat, which occasions the slow pace, or
     that her corpulencie; and so great as few of them weigh less
     than fifty pound; meat it is with some, but better to the eye
     than stomach, such as only a strong appetite can vanquish; but
     otherwise, through its oyliness, it cannot chuse but quickly
     cloy and nauseate the stomach, being indeed more pleasurable to
     look than feed upon. It is of a melancholy visage, as sensible
     of nature's injury in framing so massie a body to be directed
     by complimental wings, such indeed as are unable to hoise her
     from the ground, serving only to rank her amongst birds. Her
     head is variously drest; for one half is hooded with down of a
     dark colour, the other half naked, and of a white hue, as if
     lawn were drawn over it; her bill hooks and bends downwards; the
     thrill or breathing-place is in the midst, from which part to
     the end the colour is of a light green, mixt with pale yellow;
     her eyes are round and bright, and instead of feathers has a
     most fine down; her train (like to a China beard) is no more
     than three or four short feathers; her leggs are thick and
     black; her talons great; her stomach fiery, so that as she can
     easily digest stones; in that and shape not a little resembling
     the ostrich."--(P. 383.)

François Cauche, an account of whose voyage, made in 1638, is
published in the _Relations Véritables et Curieuses de l'Isle de
Madagascar_, (Paris, 1651) states that he saw in the Mauritius birds
called Oiseaux de Nazaret, larger than a swan, covered with black
down, with crested feathers on the rump, "as many in number as the
bird is years old." In place of wings there are some black curved
feathers, without webs. The cry is like that of a gosling.

     "They only lay one egg, which is white, the _size of a halfpenny
     roll_; by the side of which they place a white stone, of the
     dimensions of a hen's egg. They lay on grass, which they
     collect, and make their nests in the forests; if one kills the
     young one, a gray stone is found in the gizzard. We call them
     Oiseaux de Nazaret. The fat is excellent to give ease to the
     muscles and nerves."

Here let us pause a moment, to consider what was the probable size
of a halfpenny roll in the year 1638. How many vast and various
elements must be taken to account in calculating the dimensions
of that "_pain d'un sol!_" Macculloch, Cobden, Joseph Hume, come
over and help us in this our hour of _knead_! Was corn high or
low? were wages up or down? were bakers honest or dishonest? was
there a fixed measure of quantity for these our matutinal baps? Did
town-councils regulate their weight and quality, or was conscience
left controller, from the quartern loaf downwards to the smallest
form assumed by yeast and flour?

  "Tell me where was fancy bread?"

Does no one know precisely what was the size of a halfpenny roll in
the year 1638? In that case, we shall not mention the dimensions of
the Dodo's egg.

There is no doubt that the bird recorded by Cauche was the true
Dodo, although it is probable that he either described it from
memory, or confused it with the descriptions then current of the
cassowary. Thus he adds that the legs were of considerable length,
that it had only three toes, and no tongue--characters (with the
exception of the last, inapplicable, of course, to either kind)
which truly indicate the latter species. This name of "bird of
Nazareth" has, moreover, given rise to a false or phantom species,
called _Didus Nazarenus_ in systematic works, and is supposed to
have been derived from the small island or sandbank of Nazareth, to
the north-east of Madagascar. Now Dr Hamel has recently rendered it
probable that no such island or sandbank is in existence, and so we
need not seek for its inhabitants: at all events, there is no such
bird as the Nazarene Dodo--_Didus Nazarenus_.

The next piece of evidence regarding the Dodo is highly interesting
and important, as it shows that, at least in one instance, this
extraordinary bird was transported alive to Europe, and exhibited in
our own country. In a manuscript preserved in the British Museum,
Sir Hamon Lestrange, the father of the more celebrated Sir Roger,
in a commentary on Brown's _Vulgar Errors_, and _apropos_ of the
ostrich, records as follows:--

     "About 1638, as I walked London streets, I saw the picture of a
     strange fowle hong out upon a cloth, and myselfe, with one or
     two more then in company, went in to see it. It was kept in a
     chamber, and was a great fowle somewhat bigger than the largest
     turkey-cock, and so legged and footed, but stouter and thicker,
     and of a more erect shape; coloured before like the breast of a
     young cock fesan, and, on the back, of dunn or deare coulour.
     The keeper called it a Dodo; and in the end of a chimney in
     the chamber there lay a heape of large pebble stones, whereof
     hee gave it many in our sight, some as bigg as nutmegs, and
     the keeper told us she eats them, (conducing to digestion);
     and though I remember not how farr the keeper was questioned
     therein, yet I am confident that afterwards shee cast them all
     againe."

It is curious that no confirmation can be obtained of this
exhibition from contemporary authorities. The period was prolific
in pamphlets and broadsides, but political excitement probably
engrossed the minds of the majority, and rendered them careless
of the wonders of nature. Yet the individual in question may in
all likelihood be traced down to the present day, and portions of
it seen and handled by the existing generation. In Tradescant's
catalogue of his "_Collection of Rarities preserved at South
Lambeth, near London_," 1656, we find an entry--"Dodar from the
island Mauritius; it is not able to flie, being so big." It is
enumerated under the head of "Whole birds;" and Willughby, whose
_Ornithologia_ appeared in 1676, says of the Dodo, "Exuvias hujusce
avis vidimus in museo Tradescantiano." The same specimen is
alluded to by Llhwyd in 1684, and by Hyde in 1700,--having passed,
meanwhile, into the Ashmolean Museum, at Oxford, with the rest of
the Tradescantian collection. As Tradescant was the most noted
collector of things natural in his day, and there were few, if
any, to enter into competition with him, it may be well supposed
that such a _rara avis_ as a living Dodo would attract his close
attention, and that it would, in all probability, find its way into
his cabinet on its decease. It may, therefore, be inferred that the
same individual which was exhibited in London, and described by
Lestrange in 1638, is that recorded as a stuffed specimen in the
catalogue of Tradescant's Museum, (1656,) and bequeathed by him,
with his other curiosities, to Elias Ashmole, the munificent founder
of the still existing museum at Oxford.

The considerate reader will not unnaturally ask, Where is now that
last of Dodos? and echo answers, Where? Alas! it was destroyed, "by
order of the Visitors," in 1755. The following is the evidence of
that destruction, as given by Mr J. S. Duncan in the 3d volume of
the _Zoological Journal_, p. 559:--

     "In the Ashmolean Catalogue, made by Ed. Llhwyd, musei
     procustos, 1684, (Plott being then keeper,) the entry of the
     bird is 'No. 29, Gallus gallinaceus peregrinus Clusii,' &c. In a
     catalogue made subsequently to 1755, it is stated, 'The numbers
     from 5 to 46, being decayed, were ordered to be removed at a
     meeting of the majority of the Visitors, Jan. 8, 1755.' Among
     these, of course, was included the Dodo, its number being 29.
     This is further shown by a new catalogue, completed in 1756, in
     which the order of the Visitors is recorded as follows:--'Illa
     quibus nullus in margine assignatur numerus, a Musæo subducta
     sunt cimelia, annuentibus Vice-Cancellario aliisque Curatoribus
     ad ea lustranda convocatis, die Januarii 8vo, A.D. 1755.' The
     Dodo is one of those which are here without the number."

By some lucky accident, however, a small portion of "this last
descendant of an ancient race," as Mr Strickland terms it, escaped
the clutches of the destroyers. "The head and one of the feet were
saved from the flames, and are still preserved in the Ashmolean
Museum."[20]

  [20] The scientific value of these remnants, Mr Strickland informs
  us, has been lately much increased by skilful dissection. Dr Acland,
  the lecturer in anatomy, has divided the skin of the cranium down
  the mesial line, and, by removing it from the left side, the entire
  osteological structure of this extraordinary skull is exposed
  to view, while on the other side the external covering remains
  undisturbed. The solitary foot was formerly covered by decomposed
  integuments, and presented few external characters. These have
  been removed by Dr Kidd, the professor of medicine, who has made
  an interesting preparation of both the osseous and tendinous
  structures.--See _The Dodo and its Kindred_, p. 33.

Let us now retrace our steps, for the sake of taking up, very
briefly, the history of the other known remnants of this now
extinct species. Among the printed books of the Ashmolean Museum,
there is a small tract, of which the second edition (the first is
without date) is entitled, "A Catalogue of many natural rarities,
with great industry, cost, and thirty years' travel in foreign
countries, collected by Robert Hubert, _alias_ Forges, gent. and
sworn servant to his majesty; and daily to be seen at the place
formerly called the Music House, near the west end of St Paul's
Church," 12mo, London, 1665. At page 11 is the following entry:--"A
legge of a Dodo, a great heavy bird that cannot fly: it is a bird
of the Maurcius island." This specimen is supposed to be that which
afterwards passed into the possession of the Royal Society, is
recorded in their catalogue of _Natural and Artificial Curiosities_,
published by Grew in 1681, and is now in the British Museum. It is
somewhat larger than the Ashmolean foot, and, from its excellent
state of preservation, finely exhibits the external characters of
the toes and tarsus.

In Olearus's catalogue of the museum at Gottorf, (the seat of the
Dukes of Schleswig, and recently a less easy one than we have known
it,) of which the first edition was published in 1666, there is the
following notice of a Dodo's head:--

     "No. 5 is the head of a foreign bird, which Clusius names
     _Gallus peregrinus_, Mirenberg _Cygnus cucullatus_, and the
     Dutch walghvögel, from the disgust which they are said to have
     taken to its hard flesh. The Dutch seem to have first discovered
     this bird in the island of Mauritius; and it is stated to have
     no wings, but in place of them two winglets, like the emeu and
     the penguins."--(P. 25.)

This specimen, after having been disregarded, if not forgotten,
for nearly two centuries, was lately re-discovered, by Professor
C. Reinhardt, amongst a mass of ancient rubbish, and is now in the
public museum of Copenhagen, where it was examined by Mr Strickland
two years ago.[21] The integumentary portions have been all removed,
but it exhibits the same osteological characters as the Oxford head,
though less perfect, the base of the occiput being absent. It is of
somewhat smaller size.

  [21] The collection of the Dukes of Schleswig was removed about the
  year 1720, by Frederic IV., from Gottorf to Copenhagen, where it
  is now incorporated with the Royal "Kunstkammer" of that northern
  capital.

The remnants now noticed--three heads and two feet--are the only
ascertained existing portions of the famous Dodo; a bird which,
as we have seen in the preceding extracts, might have been well
enough known to such of our great great-grandfathers as were in the
sea-faring line.

But when did the last Dodo die? We cannot answer that question
articulately, as to the very year, still less as to the season, or
time of day--and we believe that no intimations of the event were
sent to the kindred; but we do not hesitate to state our belief
that that affecting occurrence or bereavement took place some time
subsequent to the summer of 1681, and prior to 1693. The latest
evidence of the existence of Dodos in the Mauritius is contained
in a manuscript of the British Museum, entitled "A coppey of Mr
Benj. Harry's Journall when he was chief mate of the Shippe Berkley
Castle, Captn. Wm. Talbot commander, on voyage to the Coste and Bay,
1679, which voyage they wintered at the Maurrisshes." On the return
from India, being unable to weather the Cape of Good Hope, they
determined to make for "the Marushes," the 4th June 1681. They saw
the land on the 3d July, and on the 11th they began to build huts,
and with much labour spread out their cargo to dry:--

     "Now, having a little respitt, I will make a little description
     of the island, first of its producks, then of its parts; ffirst,
     of winged and feathered ffowle, the less passant are _Dodos,
     whose fflesh is very hard_, a small sort of Gees, reasonably
     good Teele, Cuckoes, Pasca fflemingos, Turtle Doves, large
     Batts, many small birds which are good.... Heer are many wild
     hoggs and land-turtle which are very good, other small creators
     on the Land, as Scorpions and Musketoes, these in small numbers,
     Batts and ffleys a multitude, Munkeys of various sorts."

After this all historical evidence of the existence of the Dodo
ceases, although we cannot doubt that they continued for yet a
few years. The Dutch first colonised the Mauritius in 1644. The
island is not above forty miles in length; and although, when first
discovered, it was found clothed with dense forests of palms, and
various other trees--among whose columnar stems and leafy umbrage
the native creatures might find a safe abode, with food and
shelter--how speedily would not the improvident rapacity of hungry
colonists, or of reckless fresh-flesh-bereaved mariners, diminish
the numbers of a large and heavy-bodied bird, of powerless wing
and slow of foot, and useful, moreover, in the way of culinary
consumption. Mr Strickland is of opinion that their destruction
would be further hastened, or might be mainly caused, by the dogs,
cats, and swine which accompany man in his migrations, and become
themselves emancipated in the forests. All these creatures are more
or less carnivorous, and are fond of eggs and young birds; and as
the Dodo is said to have hatched only one egg at a time, a single
savage mouthful might suffice to destroy the hope of a family for
many a day.

That the destruction of Dodos was completed by 1693, Mr Strickland
thinks may be inferred from the narrative of Leguat, who, in
that year, remained several months in the Mauritius, and, while
enumerating its animal productions at considerable length, makes no
mention whatever of the bird in question. He adds,--"L'isle était
autrefois toute remplie d'oyes et de canards sauvages; de poules
d'eau, de gelinottes, de tortues de mer et de terre, _mais tout cela
est devenue fort rare_." And, while referring to the "hogs of the
China kind," he states that these beasts do a great deal of damage,
by devouring all the young animals they can catch. It is thus
sufficiently evident that civilisation was making aggressive inroads
on the natural state of the Mauritius even in 1693.

The Dutch evacuated the island in 1712, and were succeeded by the
French, who colonised it under the name of Isle de France; and this
change in the population no doubt accounts for the almost entire
absence of any traditionary knowledge of this remarkable bird among
the later inhabitants. Baron Grant lived in the Mauritius for twenty
years from 1740; and his son, who compiled his papers into a history
of the island, states that no trace of such a bird was to be found
at that time. In the _Observations sur la Physique_ for the year
1778, there is a negative notice, by M. Morel, of the Dodo and its
kindred. "Ces oiseaux, si bien décrits dans le tome 2 de l'Histoire
des Oiseaux de M. le Comte de Buffon, n'ont jamais été vus aux Isles
de France, &c., depuis plus de 60 ans que ces parages sont habités
et visités par des colonies Françoises. Les plus anciens habitans
assurent tous que ces oiseaux monstrueux leur ont toujours été
inconnus." M. Bory St Vincent, who visited the Mauritius and Bourbon
in 1801, and has given us an account of the physical features of
those islands in his "Voyage," assures us (vol. ii. p. 306) that he
instituted all possible inquiries regarding the Dodo (or Dronte) and
its kindred, without being able to pick up the slightest information
on the subject; and although he advertised "une grande recompense a
qui pourrait lui donner la moindre indice de l'ancienne existence
de cet oiseau, un silence universel a prouvé que le souvenir même
du Dronte était perdu parmi les créoles." De Blainville informs us,
(_Nouv. Ann. Mus._ iv. 31,) that the subject was discussed at a
public dinner at the Mauritius in 1816, where were present several
persons from seventy to ninety years of age, none of whom had any
knowledge of any Dodo, either from recollection or tradition.
Finally, Mr J. V. Thompson, who resided for some years in Mauritius
prior to 1816, states, (_Mag. of Nat. Hist._, ii. 443,) that no more
traces could then be found of the Dodo than of the truth of the tale
of Paul and Virginia.

But the historical evidence already adduced, as to the former
existence of this bird, is confirmed in a very interesting manner
by what may be called the pictorial proof. Besides the rude
delineations given by the earlier voyagers, there are several old
oil-paintings of the Dodo still extant, by skilful artists, who had
no other object in view than to represent with accuracy the forms
before them. These paintings are five in number, whereof one is
anonymous; three bear the name of Roland Savery, an eminent Dutch
animal-painter of the early portion of the seventeenth century, and
one is by John Savery, Roland's nephew.

The first of these is the best known, and is that from which the
figure of the Dodo, in all modern compilations of ornithology,
has been copied. It once belonged to George Edwards, who, in his
work on birds, (vi. 294,) tells us, that "the original picture was
drawn in Holland _from the living bird_, brought from St Maurice's
island in the East Indies, in the early times of the discovery of
the Indies by the way of the Cape of Good Hope. It was the property
of the late Sir H. Sloane to the time of his death, and afterwards
becoming my property. I deposited it in the British Museum as a
great curiosity. The above history of the picture I had from Sir H.
Sloane, and the late Dr Mortimer, secretary to the Royal Society."
It is still preserved in the place to which Edwards had consigned
it, and may be seen in the bird gallery, along with the actual foot
already mentioned. Although without name or date, the similarity
both of design and execution, leads to the conclusion that it was by
one or other of the Saverys. It may be seen engraved in the _Penny
Cyclopædia_, in illustration of Mr Broderip's article _Dodo_ in that
work.

The second painting, one of Roland Savery's, is in the royal
collection at the Hague, and may be regarded as a _chef-d'œuvre_.
It represents Orpheus charming the creation, and we there behold the
Dodo spell-bound with his other mute companions. All the ordinary
creatures there shown are depicted with the greatest truthfulness;
and why should the artist, delighting, as he seems to have done, in
tracing the most delicate features of familiar nature, have marred
the beautiful consistency of his design by introducing a feigned,
or even an exaggerated representation? We may here adduce the
invaluable evidence of Professor Owen.

     "While at the Hague, in the summer of 1838, I was much struck
     with the minuteness and accuracy with which the exotic species
     of animals had been painted by Savery and Breughel, in such
     subjects as Orpheus charming the Beasts, &c., in which scope
     was allowed for grouping together a great variety of animals.
     Understanding that the celebrated menagerie of Prince Maurice
     had afforded the living models to these artists, I sat down
     one day before Savery's Orpheus and the Beasts, to make a list
     of the species, which the picture sufficiently evinced that
     the artist had had the opportunity to study alive. Judge of my
     surprise and pleasure in detecting, in a dark corner of the
     picture, (which is badly hung between two windows,) the _Dodo_,
     beautifully finished, showing for example, though but three
     inches long, the auricular circle of feathers, the scutation
     of the tarsi, and the loose structure of the caudal plumes. In
     the number and proportions of the toes, and in general form, it
     accords with Edwards' oil-painting in the British Museum; and I
     conclude that the miniature must have been copied from the study
     of a living bird, which, it is most probable, formed part of
     the Mauritian menagerie. The bird is standing in profile with a
     lizard at its feet."--_Penny Cyclopædia_, xxiii. p. 143.

Mr Strickland, in 1845, made a search through the Royal Gallery of
Berlin, which was known to contain several of Savery's pictures.
Among them, we are happy to say that he found one representing
the Dodo, with numerous other animals, "in Paradise!" It was very
conformable with the figure last mentioned; but what renders this,
our third portrait, of peculiar interest, is, that it affords
a date--the words "Roelandt Savery fe. 1626," being inscribed
on one corner. As the artist was born in 1576, he must have
been twenty-three years old when Van Neck's expedition returned
to Holland; and as we are told by De Bry, in reference to the
Mauritius, that "aliæ ibidem aves visæ sunt, quas walkvogel Batavi
nominarunt, et _unam secum in Hollandiam importarunt_," it is quite
possible that the portrait of this individual may have been taken at
the time, and afterwards recopied, both by himself and his nephew,
in their later pictures. Professor Owen leans to the belief that
Prince Maurice's collection afforded the living prototype,--an
opinion so far strengthened by Edwards's tradition, that the
painting in the British Museum was drawn in Holland from a "living
bird." Either view is preferable to Dr Hamel's suggestion, that
Savery's representation was taken from the Dodo exhibited in London,
as that individual was seen alive by Sir Hamon Lestrange in 1638,
and must therefore (by no means a likely occurrence) have lived, in
the event supposed, at least twelve years in captivity.

Very recently Dr J. J. de Tchudi, the well-known Peruvian traveller,
transmitted to Mr Strickland an exact copy of another figure of
the Dodo, which forms part of a picture in the imperial collection
of the Belvedere at Vienna--by no means a safe location, in these
tempestuous times, for the treasures of either art or nature. But we
trust that Prince Windischgratz and the hanging committee will now
see that all is right, and that General Bem has not been allowed to
carry off this drawing of the Dodo in his carpet-bag. It is dated
1628.

     "There are two circumstances," says Mr Strickland, "which give
     an especial interest to this painting. First, the novelty of
     attitude in the Dodo, exhibiting an activity of character which
     corroborates the supposition that the artist had living model
     before him, and contrasting strongly with the aspect of passive
     stolidity in the other pictures. And, secondly, the Dodo is
     represented as watching, apparently with hungry looks, the
     merry wriggling of an eel in the water! Are we hence to infer
     that the Dodo fed upon eels? The advocates of the Raptorial
     affinities of the Dodo, of whom we shall soon speak, will
     doubtless reply in the affirmative; but, as I hope shortly
     to demonstrate that it belongs to a family of birds all the
     other members of which are frugivorous, I can only regard the
     introduction of the eel as a pictorial license. In this, as
     in all his other paintings, Savery brought into juxtaposition
     animals from all countries, without regarding geographical
     distribution. His delineations of birds and beasts were
     wonderfully exact, but his knowledge of natural history probably
     went no further; and although the Dodo is certainly _looking at_
     the eel, yet we have no proof that he is going to _eat_ it. The
     mere collocation of animals in an artistic composition, cannot
     be accepted as evidence against the positive truths revealed by
     comparative anatomy."--(P. 30.)

The fifth and last old painting of the Dodo, is that now in the
Ashmolean Museum at Oxford, and presented to it by Mr Darby in 1813.
Nothing is known of its previous history. It is the work of John
Savery, the nephew of Roland, and is dated 1651. Its most peculiar
character is the colossal scale on which it has been designed,--the
Dodo of this canvass standing about three feet and a half in height.

     "It is difficult," observes our author, "to assign a motive to
     the artist for thus magnifying an object already sufficiently
     uncouth in appearance. Were it not for the discrepancy of
     dates, I should have conjectured that this was the identical
     "picture of a strange fowle hong out upon a cloth," which
     attracted the notice of Sir Hamon Lestrange and his friends, as
     they "walked London streets" in 1638; the delineations used by
     showmen being in general more remarkable for attractiveness than
     veracity."--(P. 31.)

We have now exhibited the leading facts which establish both the
existence and extinction of this extraordinary bird: the existence,
proved by the recorded testimony of the earlier navigators, the few
but peculiar portions of structure which still remain among us, and
the _vera effigies_ handed down by artists coeval with the period in
which the Dodo lived: the non-existence, deduced from the general
progress of events, and the absence of all knowledge of the species
since the close of the seventeenth century, although the natural
productions of the Mauritius are, in other respects, much better
known to us now than then. Why any particular creature should have
been so formed as to be unable to resist the progress of _humanity_,
and should in consequence have died, it is not for us to say. "There
are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in our
philosophy;" and of this we may feel assured, that if, as we doubt
not, the Dodo is extinct, then it has served its end, whatever that
might be.

There is nothing imperfect in the productions of nature, although
there are many organisms in which certain forms and faculties are
less developed than in others. There are certainly, in particular
groups, such things as rudimentary organs, which belong, as it were,
not so much to the individual species, as to the general system
which prevails in the larger and more comprehensive class to which
such species belong; and in the majority of which these organs
fulfil a frequent and obvious function, and so are very properly
regarded as indispensable to the wellbeing of such as use them.
But there are many examples in animal life which indicate that
particular parts of structure remain, in certain species, for ever
in an undeveloped state. In respect to teeth, for instance, the
Greenland whale may be regarded as a _permanent suckling_; for that
huge creature having no occasion for these organs, they never pierce
the gums, although in early life they are distinctly traceable in
the dental groove of the jaws. So the Dodo was a kind of _permanent
nestling_, covered with down instead of feathers, and with wings
and tail (the oars and rudder of all aërial voyagers) so short and
feeble as to be altogether inefficient for the purposes of flight.
Why should such things be? We cannot say. Can any one say why they
should not be? The question is both wide and deep, and they are
most likely to plunge into it who can neither dive nor swim. We
agree with Mr Strickland, that these apparently anomalous facts
are, in reality, indications of laws which the great Creator has
been pleased to form and follow in the construction of organised
beings,--inscriptions in an unknown hieroglyphic, which we may rest
assured must have a meaning, but of which we have as yet scarcely
learned the alphabet. "There appear, however, reasonable grounds for
believing that the Creator has assigned to each class of animals a
definite type or structure, from which He has never departed, even
in the most exceptional or eccentric modifications of form."

As to the true position of the Dodo in systematic ornithology,
various opinions have been emitted by various men. The majority seem
to have placed it in the great Rasorial or Gallinaceous order, as a
component part of the family _Struthionidæ_, or ostrich tribe.

     "The bird in question," says Mr Vigors, "from every account
     which we have of its economy, and from the appearance of
     its head and foot, is decidedly gallinaceous; and, from the
     insufficiency of its wings for the purposes of flight, it may
     with equal certainty be pronounced to be of the _Struthious_
     structure. But the foot has a strong hind-toe, and, with the
     exception of its being more robust, in which character it still
     adheres to the Struthionidæ, it corresponds to the Linnæan genus
     _Crax_, that commences the succeeding family. The bird thus
     becomes osculant, and forms a strong point of junction between
     those two contiguous groups."--_Linn. Trans._ xiv. 484.

M. de Blainville (in _Nouv. Ann. du Mus._ iv. 24,) contests this
opinion by various arguments, which we cannot here report, and
concludes that the Dodo is a raptorial bird, allied to the vultures.
Mr Broderip, in his article before referred to, sums up the
discussion as follows:--

     "If the picture in the British Museum, and the cut in Bontius,
     be faithful representations of a creature then living, to make
     such a bird of prey--a vulture, in the ordinary acceptation
     of the term--would be to set all the usual laws of adaptation
     at defiance. A vulture without wings! How was it to be fed?
     And not only without wings, but necessarily slow and heavy in
     progression on its clumsy feet. The _Vulturidæ_ are, as we
     know, among the most active agents for removing the decomposing
     animal remains in tropical and inter-tropical climates, and they
     are provided with a prodigal development of wing, to waft them
     speedily to the spot tainted by the corrupt incumbrance. But no
     such powers of wing would be required by a bird appointed to
     clear away the decaying and decomposing masses of a luxuriant
     tropical vegetation--a kind of vulture for vegetable impurities,
     so to speak--and such an office would not be by any means
     inconsistent with comparative slowness of pedestrian motion."

Professor Owen, doubtless one of our greatest authorities, inclines
towards an affinity with the vultures, and considers the Dodo as an
extremely modified form of the raptorial order.

     "Devoid of the power of flight, it could have had small chance
     of obtaining food by preying upon the members of its own class;
     and, if it did not exclusively subsist on dead and decaying
     organised matter, it most probably restricted its attacks to
     the class of reptiles, and to the littoral fishes, _Crustacea_,
     &c., which its well-developed back-toe and claw would enable it
     to seize, and hold with a firm gripe."--_Transactions of the
     Zoological Society_, iii. p. 331.

We confess that, setting aside various other unconformable features
in the structure of the Dodo, the fact, testified by various
authorities, of its swallowing stones, and having stones in its
gizzard, for the mechanical triturition of its food, (a peculiarity
unknown among the raptorial order,) is sufficient to bar the
above view, supported though it be by the opinion of our most
distinguished living anatomist.

In a recent memoir by Professor J. F. Brandt (of which an abstract
is given in the _Bulletin de la Class. Phys. de l'Acad. Imp. de St
Petersburg_, vol. viii. No. 3) we have the following statement:--

     "The Dodo, a bird provided with divided toes and cursorial feet,
     is best classed in the order of the Waders, among which it
     appears, from its many peculiarities, (most of which, however,
     are quite referable to forms in this order,) to be an anomalous
     link connecting several groups,--a link which, for the reasons
     above given, inclines towards the ostriches, and especially also
     towards the pigeons."

We doubt the direct affinity to any species of the grallatorial
order, an order which contains the cursorial or swift-running birds,
very dissimilar in their prevailing habits to anything we know of
the sluggish and sedentary Dodo. Professor Brandt may be regarded
as having mistaken analogy for affinity; and, in Mr Strickland's
opinion, he has in this instance wandered from the true method
of investigation, in his anxiety to discover a link connecting
dissevered groups.

What then is, or rather was, the Dodo? The majority of inquirers
have no doubt been influenced, though unconsciously, by its colossal
size, and have consequently sought its actual analogies only among
such huge species as the ostrich, the vulture, and the albatross.
But the range in each order is often enormous, as, for example,
between the _Falco cærulescens_, or finch falcon of Bengal, an
accipitrine bird not bigger than a sparrow, and an eagle of the
largest size; or between the swallow-like stormy petrel and the
gigantic pelican of the wilderness. It appears that Professor J.
T. Rheinhardt of Copenhagen, who rediscovered the cranium of the
Gottorf Museum, was the first to indicate the direct relationship of
the Dodo to the _pigeons_. He has recently been engaged in a voyage
round the world, but it is known that, before he left Copenhagen in
1845, he had called the attention of his correspondents, both in
Sweden and Denmark, to "the striking affinity which exists between
this extinct bird and the pigeons, especially the Trerons." The
Columbine view is that taken up, and so admirably illustrated, by
Mr Strickland, the most recent as well as the best biographer of
the Dodo. He refers to the great strength and curvature of bill
exhibited by several groups of the tropical fruit-eating pigeons,
and adds:

     "If we now regard the Dodo as an extreme modification, not of
     the vultures, but of those vulture-like frugivorous pigeons,
     we shall, I think, class it in a group whose characters are
     far more consistent with what we know of its structure and
     habits. There is no _a priori_ reason why a pigeon should not
     be so modified, in conformity with external circumstances,
     as to be incapable of flight, just as we see a grallatorial
     bird modified into an ostrich, and a diver into a penguin. Now
     we are told that Mauritius, an island forty miles in length,
     and about one hundred miles from the nearest land, was, when
     discovered, clothed with dense forests of palms and various
     other trees. A bird adapted to feed on the fruits produced by
     these forests would, in that equable climate, have no occasion
     to migrate to distant lands; it would revel in the perpetual
     luxuries of tropical vegetation, and would have but little need
     of locomotion. Why then should it have the means of flying? Such
     a bird might wander from tree to tree, tearing with its powerful
     beak the fruits which strewed the ground, and digesting their
     stony kernels with its powerful gizzard, enjoying tranquillity
     and abundance, until the arrival of man destroyed the balance
     of animal life, and put a term to its existence. Such, in my
     opinion, was the Dodo,--a colossal, brevipennate, frugivorous
     pigeon."--(P. 40.)

For the various osteological and other details by which the
Columbine character of the Dodo is maintained, and as we think
established, we must refer our readers to Mr Strickland's
volume,[22] where those parts of the subject are very skilfully
worked out by his able coadjutor, Dr Melville.

  [22] In regard to the figures by which it is illustrated, we beg
  to call attention very specially to Plates VIII. and IX., as the
  most beautiful examples of the lithographic art, applied to natural
  history, which we have yet seen executed in this country.

We shall now proceed to notice certain other extinct species
which form the dead relations of the Dodo, just as the pigeons
continue to represent the tribe from which they have departed. The
island Rodriguez, placed about three hundred miles eastward of the
Mauritius, though not more than fifteen miles long by six broad,
possessed in modern times a peculiar bird, also without effective
wings, and in several other respects resembling the Dodo. It was
named _Solitaire_ by the early voyagers, and forms the species
_Didus solitarius_ of systematic writers. The small island in
question seems to have remained in a desert and unpeopled state
until 1691, when a party of French Protestant refugees settled
upon it, and remained for a couple of years. The Solitaire is thus
described by their commander, Francois Leguat, who (in his _Voyage
et Avantures_, 1708) has given us an interesting account both of
his own doings in general, and of this species in particular.

     "Of all the birds in the island, the most remarkable is that
     which goes by the name of the _Solitary_, because it is very
     seldom seen in company, though there are abundance of them. The
     feathers of the male are of a brown-gray colour, the feet and
     beak are like a turkey's, but a little more crooked. They have
     scarce any tail, but their hind part, covered with feathers,
     is roundish like the crupper of a horse: they are taller
     than turkeys; their neck is straight, and a little longer in
     proportion than a turkey's, when it lifts up its head. Its eye
     is black and lively, and its head without comb or cap. They
     never fly; their wings are too little to support the weight of
     their bodies; they serve only to beat themselves, and to flutter
     when they call one another. They will whirl about for twenty or
     thirty times together on the same side, during the space of four
     or five minutes. The motion of their wings makes then a noise
     very much like that of a rattle, and one may hear it two hundred
     paces off. The bone of their wing grows greater towards the
     extremity, and forms a little round mass under the feathers, as
     big as a musket-ball. That and its beak are the chief defence of
     this bird. 'Tis very hard to catch it in the woods, but easier
     in open places, because we run faster than they, and sometimes
     we approach them without much trouble. From March to September
     they are extremely fat, and taste admirably well, especially
     while they are young; some of the males weigh forty-five pounds.

     "The females" continues our enamoured author, "are wonderfully
     beautiful, some fair, some brown,--I call them fair, because
     they are of the colour of fair hair. They have a sort of peak
     like a widow's upon their beak, which is of a dun colour. No
     one feather is straggling from the other all over their bodies,
     they being very careful to adjust themselves, and make them all
     even with their beaks. The feathers on their thighs are round
     like shells at the end, and, being there very thick, have an
     agreeable effect. They have two risings on their crops, and the
     feathers are whiter there than the rest, which lively represents
     the fair neck of a beautiful woman. They walk with so much
     stateliness and good grace, that one cannot help admiring and
     loving them; by which means their fine mien often saves their
     lives. Though these birds will sometimes very familiarly come
     up near enough to one, when we do not run after them, yet they
     will never grow tame. As soon as they are caught they shed
     tears without crying, and refuse all manner of meat till they
     die."--(P. 71.)

Their natural food is the fruit of a species of plantain. When these
birds are about to build, they select a clean place, and then gather
together a quantity of palm-leaves, which they heap up about a foot
and a half high, and there they sit. They never lay but one egg,
which greatly exceeds that of a goose. Some days after the young
one has left the nest, a company of thirty or forty grown-up birds
brings another young one to it; and the new-fledged bird, with its
father and mother, joining with the band, they all march away to
some by-place.

     "We frequently followed them," says Leguat, "and found that
     afterwards the old ones went each their way alone, or in
     couples, and left the two young ones together, and this we
     called a _marriage_. This particularity has something in it
     which looks a little fabulous; nevertheless what I say is
     sincere truth, and what I have more than once observed with care
     and pleasure."

Leguat gives a figure of this singular bird, which in his plate has
somewhat of the air and aspect of a Christmas goose, although, of
course, it wants the web-feet. Its neck and legs are proportionally
longer than those parts of the Dodo, and give it more of a
_struthious_ appearance: but the existing osteological evidence is
sufficient to show that it was closely allied to that bird, and
shared with it in some peculiar affinities to the pigeon tribe. It
is curious that, although Rodriguez is a British settlement, we
have scarcely any information regarding it beyond what is to be
found in the work last quoted, and all that we have since learned
of the Solitary is that it has become extinct. Of late years Mr
Telfair made inquiries of one of the colonists, who assured him
that no such bird now existed on the island; and the same negative
result was obtained by Mr Higgins, a Liverpool gentleman, who, after
suffering shipwreck on Rodriguez, resided there for a couple of
months. As far back as 1789, some bones incrusted by a stalagmite,
and erroneously supposed to belong to the Dodo, were found in a cave
in Rodriguez by a M. Labistour. They afterwards found their way to
Paris, where they may still be seen. We are informed (_Proceedings
of the Zoological Society_, Part I. p. 31) that Col. Dawkins
recently visited these caverns, and dug without finding any thing
but a small bone. But M. Eudes succeeded in disinterring various
bones, among others those of a large species of bird no longer found
alive upon the island. He adds that the Dutch, who first landed at
Rodriguez, left cats there to destroy the rats, which annoyed them.
These cats are now so numerous as to prove very destructive to the
poultry, and he thinks it probable that these feline wanderers
may have extirpated the bird in question, by devouring the young
ones as soon as they were hatched,--a destruction which may have
been effected even before the island became inhabited by the human
race. Be that as it may, Mr Telfair sent collections of the bones
to this country, one of which may be seen in the museum of the
Andersonian Institution, Glasgow. Mr Strickland mourns over the loss
or disappearance of those transmitted to the Zoological Society
of London. We have been informed within these few days that, like
the head of the Danish Dodo, they have been rediscovered, lying
in a stable or other outhouse, in the vicinity of the museum of
that Society. Both the Glasgow specimens, and those in Paris, have
been carefully examined and compared by Mr Strickland, and their
Columbine characters are minutely described by his skilful and
accurate coadjutor, Dr Melville, in the second portion of his work.
Mr S. very properly regards certain peculiarities, alluded to by
Leguat, such as the feeding on dates or plantains, as confirmatory
of his view of the natural affinities already mentioned.

So much for the Solitaire of Rodriguez and its affinities.[23]
A singular fact, however, remains to be yet attended to in this
insular group. The volcanic island of Bourbon seems also to have
contained _brevi-pennate_ birds, whose inability to fly has likewise
led to their extinction. This island, which lies about a hundred
miles south-west of Mauritius, was discovered contemporaneously by
Pedro de Mascaregnas, in the sixteenth century. The earliest notice
which concerns our present inquiry, is by Captain Castleton, who
visited Bourbon in 1613. In the narrative, as given by Purchas, we
read as follows:--

     "There is store of land-fowl, both small and great, plentie of
     doves, great parrats, and suchlike, and a great fowl of the
     bignesse of a turkie, very fat, and so short-winged that they
     cannot flie, beeing white, and in a manner tame; and so are all
     other fowles, as having not been troubled nor feared with shot.
     Our men did beat them down with sticks and stones."--(Ed. 1625,
     vol. i. p. 331.)

  [23] The companions of Vasco de Gama had, at an earlier period,
  applied the name of _Solitaires_ to certain birds found in an
  island near the Cape of Good Hope; but these must not be confounded
  with those of the Didine group above referred to. They were, in
  fact, penguins, and their wings were somewhat vaguely compared
  to those of bats, by reason of the peculiar scaly or undeveloped
  state of the feathers in these birds. Dr Hamel has shown that the
  term _Solitaires_, as employed by the Portuguese sailors, was a
  corruption of _sotilicairos_, an alleged Hottentot word, of which
  we do not profess to know the meaning, being rather rusted in that
  tongue. We know, however, that penguins are particularly gregarious,
  and, therefore, by no means solitary, although they may be extremely
  _sotilicairious_ for anything we can say to the contrary.

Bontekoe van Hoorn, a Dutch voyager, spent twenty-one days in
Bourbon in 1618, and found the island to abound in pigeons, parrots,
and other species, among which "there were also _Dod-eersen_, which
have small wings; and so far from being able to fly, they were so
fat that they could scarcely walk, and when they tried to run, they
dragged their under side along the ground." There is no reason to
suppose that these birds were actual Dodos, of the existence of
which in Bourbon there is not the slightest proof. That Bontekoe's
account was compiled from recollection rather than from any journal
written at the time, is almost certain from this tragical fact,
that his ship was afterwards blown up, and he himself was the sole
survivor. There is no likelihood that he preserved his papers any
more than his portmanteau, and he no doubt wrote from remembrance of
a large _brevipennate_ bird, whose indolent and unfearing tameness
rendered it an easy prey. Knowing that a bird of a somewhat similar
nature inhabited the neighbouring island, he took it for the same,
and called it Dodo, by a corresponding term.

A Frenchman of the name of Carré visited Bourbon in 1668, and in his
_Voyages des Indes Orientales_, he states as follows:--

     "I have seen a kind of bird which I have not found elsewhere; it
     is that which the inhabitants call the _oiseau solitaire_, for
     in fact it loves solitude, and only frequents the most secluded
     places. One never sees two or more of them together, they are
     always alone. It is not unlike a turkey, were it not that its
     legs are longer. The beauty of its plumage is delightful to
     behold. The flesh is exquisite; it forms one of the best dishes
     in this country, and might form a dainty at our tables. We
     wished to keep two of these birds to send to France and present
     them to his Majesty, but, as soon as they were on board ship,
     they died of melancholy, having refused to eat or drink."--(Vol.
     i. p. 12.)

Almost immediately after M. Carré's visit, a French colony was sent
from Madagascar to Bourbon, under the superintendence of M. de la
Haye. A certain Sieur D. B. (for this is all that is known of his
name or designation) was one of the party, and has left a narrative
of the expedition in an unpublished journal, acquired by Mr Telfair,
and presented by him to the Zoological Society of London. Besides
confirming the accounts given by preceding writers, this unknown
author affords a conclusive proof that a second species of the
same group inhabited the Island of Bourbon. We are indebted to Mr
Strickland for the original passages and the following translation:--

     1. "_Solitaires._--These birds are so called because they always
     go alone. They are the size of a large goose, and are white,
     with the tips of the wings and the tail black. The tail-feathers
     resemble those of an ostrich; the neck is long, and the beak
     is like that of a woodcock, but larger; the legs and feet like
     those of turkeys."

     2. "_Oiseaux bleus_, the size of _Solitaires_, have the plumage
     wholly blue, the beak and feet red, resembling the feet of a
     hen. They do not fly, but they run extremely fast, so that a dog
     can hardly overtake them; they are very good eating."

There is proof that one or other of these singular and now unknown
birds existed in Bourbon, at least till toward the middle of the
last century. M. Billiard, who resided there between 1817 and 1820,
states (in his _Voyages aux Colonies Orientales_) that, at the time
of the first colonisation of the island, "the woods were filled with
birds which were not alarmed at the approach of man. Among them was
the _Dodo_ or _Solitaire_, which was pursued on foot: they were
still to be seen in the time of M. de la Bourdonnaye, who sent a
specimen, as a curiosity, to one of the directors of the company."
As the gentleman last named was governor of the Isles of France and
Bourbon from 1735 to 1746, these birds, Mr Strickland observes,
_must_ have survived to the former, and _may_ have continued to the
latter date at least. But when M. Bory St Vincent made a careful
survey of the island in 1801, no such species were to be found. The
description of the bill and plumage shows that they were not genuine
Dodos, but merely entitled to be classed among their kindred. Not a
vestige of their remains is in the hands of naturalists, either in
this or any other country.

We have now finished, under Mr Strickland's guidance, our exposition
of this curious group. The restriction, at any time, of such large
birds to islands of so small a size, is certainly singular. We
cannot, however, say what peculiar and unknown geological changes
these islands may have undergone, by which their extent has been
diminished, or their inter-connexion destroyed. Volcanic groups,
such as those in question, are no doubt generally of less ancient
origin than most others; but it is by no means unlikely that these
islands of Rodriguez, Bourbon, and Mauritius, may once have formed
a united group, or much more expanded mass of terra firma than they
now exhibit; and that, by their partial submergence and separation,
the dominions of the Dodo and its kindred have, like those of many
other heavy chieftains of high degree, been greatly diminished and
laid low. But into this question of ancient boundaries we cannot now
enter.

How pleasant, on some resplendent summer evening, in such a
delicious clime as that of the Mauritius, the sun slowly sinking
amid a gorgeous blaze of light, and gilding in green and gold the
spreading summits of the towering palms,--the murmuring sea sending
its refreshing vesper-breathings through all the "pillared shades"
which stretch along that glittering shore,--how pleasant, we say,
for wearied man to sit in leafy umbrage, and sup on Dodos and their
kindred! Alas! we shall never see such days again.

Dr Hamel, as native of a northern country, is fond of animal food,
and has his senses, naturally sharp enough, so whetted thereby, that
he becomes "sagacious of his _quarry_ from afar." He judiciously
observes, in his recent memoir, (_Der Dodo_, &c.,) that in Leguat's
map the place is accurately indicated where the common kitchen of
the settlers stood, and where the great tree grew under which they
used to sit, on a bench, to take their meals. Both tree and bench
are marked upon the map. "At these two spots," says Dr Hamel, "it is
probable that the bones of a complete skeleton of Leguat's solitaire
might be collected; those of the head and feet on the site of the
kitchen, and the sternum and other bones on that of the tree."

     "I feel confident," says Mr Strickland, "that if active
     naturalists would make a series of excavations in the alluvial
     deposits, in the beds of streams, and amid the ruins of old
     institutions in Mauritius, Bourbon, and Rodriguez, he would
     speedily discover the remains of the dodo, the two 'solitaires,'
     or the 'oiseau bleu.' But I would especially direct attention
     to the caves with which these volcanic islands abound. The
     chief agents in the destruction of the brevipennate birds were
     probably the runaway negroes, who for many years infested
     the primeval forests of these islands, and inhabited the
     caverns, where they would doubtless leave the scattered bones
     of the animals on which they fed. Here, then, may we more
     especially hope to find the osseous remains of these remarkable
     animals."--(P. 61.)



THE SWORD OF HONOUR.

A TALE OF 1787.


Any old directory of the latter half of the last century will still
show, to the curious in such matters, the address of Messrs. Hope
and Bullion, merchants and general dealers at No. 4, in a certain
high and narrow street in the city of London. Not that this, in
itself, is a very valuable part of history; but to those who look
up at the dirty windows of the house as it now stands, and compare
the narrow pavement and cit-like appearance of the whole locality
with the splendours of Oxford Square or Stanhope Place, where the
business occupant of the premises has now his residence, it will be
a subject of doubt, if not of unbelief, that Mr Bullion--who dwelt
in the upper portions of the building--was as happy, and nearly as
proud, as his successor at the present time. Yet so it is; and,
without making invidious comparisons with the distinguished-looking
lady who does the honours of the mansion in Oxford Square--her
father was a sugar baker, and lived in a magnificent country house
at Mussel hill. I will venture to state, that Mr Bullion had great
reason to be satisfied with the manners and appearance of the young
person who presided at his festive board. Such a rich laugh, and
such a sweet voice, were heard in no other house in the town. And
as to her face and figure, the only dispute among painters and
sculptors was, whether the ever-varying expression of her features
did not constitute her the true property of the Reynoldses and
Romneys,--or the ever-exquisite moulding of her shape did not bring
her within the province of the severer art. At the same time it must
be confessed, that the subject of these disputes took no interest
either in brush or chisel. A bright, happy, clever creature--but no
judge of sciences and arts--was Louise Bullion. Books she had read
a few, and music she had studied a little; yet, with her slender
knowledge of the circulating library, she talked more pleasantly
than Madame de Staël, and sang so sweetly, so naturally, and so
truly, that Mrs Billington was a fool to her. She was a parlour
Jenny Lind. But Mrs Billington was not the only person who was a
fool to her. Oh no!--that sort of insanity was epidemic, and seized
on all that came near her. Even Mr Cocker the book-keeper--a little
man of upwards of fifty, who was so simple, and knew so little of
anything but arithmetic, that he always considered himself, and was
considered by the people, a boy just getting on in his teens--even
Mr Cocker was a fool to her too. For when he was invited to tea,
and had his cups sweetened by her hand, and his whole heart turned,
by some of her pathetic ballads, into something so soft and oily
that it must have been just like one of the muffins she laid on his
plate, he used to go away with a very confused idea of cube roots,
and get into the most extraordinary puzzles in the rule of three.
Miss Louise, he said, would never go out of his head; whereas she
had never once got into it, having established her quarters very
comfortably in another place a little lower down, just inside of
the brass buttons on his left breast; and yet the poor old fellow
went down to his grave without the remotest suspicion that he had
ever been in love. The people used to say that his perplexities, on
those occasions, were principally remarkable after supper--for an
invitation to tea, in those hospitable times, included an afterpiece
in the shape of some roaring hot dishes, and various bowls of a
stout and jovial beverage, whose place, I beg to say, is poorly
supplied by any conceivable quantity of negus and jellies! Yes,
the people used to say that Cocker's difficulties in calculation
arose from other causes than his admiration of Miss Louise and her
songs; but this was a calumny--and, in fact, any few extra glasses
he took were for the express purpose of clearing his head, after it
had got bewildered by her smiles and music; and therefore how could
they possibly be the cause of his bewilderment? I repeat that Mr
Cocker was afflicted by the universal disease, and would have died
with the greatest happiness to give her a moment's satisfaction.
And so would all the clerks, except one, who was very short-sighted
and remarkably deaf, and who was afterwards tried on suspicion of
having poisoned his wife; and so would her aunt, Miss Lucretia
Smith, though her kindness was so wonderfully disguised that the
whole world would have been justified in considering it harshness
and ill-nature. It was only her way of bestowing it--as if you were
to pour out sugar from a vinegar cruet; and a good old, fussy,
scolding, grumbling, advising, tormenting, and very loving lady was
Miss Lucretia Smith--very loving, I say, not only of her niece, and
her brother-in-law, but of anybody that would agree to be loved.
Traditions existed that, in her youth, she had been a tremendous
creature for enthusiasms and romances; that she had flirted with all
the officers of the city militia, from the colonel downwards, and
with all the Lord Mayors' chaplains for an infinite series of years;
and that, though nothing came of all her praiseworthy efforts, time
had had a strengthening instead of a weakening effect on all these
passages--till now, in her fifty-third year, she actually believed
she had been in love with them all, and on the point of marriage
with more than half.

And this constituted the whole of Mr Bullion's establishment--at
least all his establishment which was regularly on the books;
but there was a young man so constantly in the house--so much at
home there--so welcome when he came, so wondered at when he staid
away--in short, so much one of the family, that I will only say, if
he was not considered a member of it, he ought to have been. For
what, I pray you, constitutes membership, if intimacy, kindness,
perpetual presence, and filial and fraternal affection--filial to
the old man, fraternal to the young lady--do not constitute it?
You might have sworn till doomsday, but Mr Cecil Hope would never
have believed that his home was anywhere but at No. 4. Nay, when,
by some accident, he found himself for a day in a very pretty, very
tasteful, and very spacious house he had in Hertfordshire, with
a ring-fence of fourteen hundred acres round it, he felt quite
disconsolate, and as if he were in a strange place. The estate
had been bought, the house had been built--as the money had been
acquired, by his father, who was no less a person than the senior
partner in the firm of Hope and Bullion, but had withdrawn his
capital from the trade, laid it out in land, superintended the
erection of his mansion, pined for his mercantile activities, and
died in three years of having nothing to do. So Cecil was rich
and unencumbered; he was also as handsome as the Apollo, who,
they say, would be a very vulgar-looking fellow if he dressed
like a Christian; and he (not the Apollo, but Cecil Hope) was
four-and-twenty years of age, five feet eleven in height, and
as pleasant a fellow as it is possible to conceive. So you may
guess whether or not he was in love with Louise. Of course he
was,--haven't I said he was a young man of some sense, and for whom
I have a regard? He adored her. And now you will, perhaps, be asking
if the admiration was returned--and that is one of the occasions on
which an impertinent reader has a great advantage over the best and
cunningest of authors. They can ask such impudent questions,--which
they would not dare to do unless under the protection and in the
sanctuary, as it were, of print, and look so amazingly knowing while
pausing for a reply, that I have no patience with the fellows at
all; and, in answer to their demand whether Louise returned the
love of Cecil Hope, I will only say this--I will see them hanged
first, before I gratify their curiosity. Indeed, how could I hold
up my head in any decent society again, if I were to commit such
a breach of confidence as that? Imagine me confessing that she
looked always fifty times happier in his presence than when he was
away--imagine me confessing that her heart beat many thumps quicker
when anybody mentioned his name--imagine me, I say, confessing
all this, and fifty things more, and then calling myself a man of
honour and discretion! No: I say again I will see the reader hanged
first, before I will answer his insolent question; so let that be
an understood thing between us, that I will never reveal any secret
with which a young lady is kind enough to intrust me.

And this, I think, is a catalogue of all the household above the
good old warehouse. Ah! no,--there is the excellent Mr Bullion
himself. He is now sixty; he has white hair, a noble, even a
_distingué_ figure: look into any page of any fashionable novel of
any year, for an explanation of what that means. On the present
occasion, you would perhaps conclude that the long-backed,
wide-tailed blue coat, the low-flapped waistcoat, tight-fitting
knee-br--ch--s, white cotton stockings in-doors, long gaiters out,
with bright-buckled square-toed shoes, may be a little inconsistent
with the epithet _distingué_. But this is a vulgar error, and
would argue that nobody could look _distingué_ without lace and
brocade. Now, only imagine Mr Bullion in a court-dress, with a
silk bag floating over his shoulder, to tie up long tresses which
have disappeared from his head for many years; a diamond-hilted
rapier that probably has no blade, and all the other portions of
that graceful and easy style of habiliment,--dress him in this way,
and look at him bowing gracefully by means of his three-cornered
hat, and you will surely grant he would be a _distingué_ figure
then,--and why not in his blue coat and smalls?

But _distingué_-looking men, even in court-dresses, may be great
rascals, and even considerable fools. Then was Mr Bullion a
rascal?--no. A fool?--no. In short, he was one of the best of men,
and could have been recognised during his life, if any one had
described him in the words of his epitaph.

Well,--we must get on. Day after day, for several months before
the date we have got to, a sort of mystery seemed to grow deeper
and deeper on the benevolent features of the father of Louise.
Something--nobody could tell what--had lifted him out of his
ordinary self. He dropt dark hints of some great change that was
shortly to take place in the position of the family: he even
took many opportunities of lecturing Cecil Hope on the miseries
of ill-assorted marriages, particularly where the lady was of a
family immeasurably superior to the man's. Miss Smith thought he was
going to be made Lord Mayor; Cecil Hope supposed he was about to be
appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer; and Louise thought he was
growing silly, and took no notice of all the airs he put on, and the
depreciatory observations he made on the rank of a country squire.
As to Mr Cocker, he was already fully persuaded that his master was
the greatest man in the world, and, if he had started for king,
would have voted him to the throne without a moment's hesitation.
At last the origin of all these proceedings on the part of Mr
Bullion began to be suspected. A little dark man, with the brightest
possible eyes, shrouded in a great cloak, with a broad-brimmed hat
carefully drawn over his brows, and just showing to the affrighted
maid who opened the door the aforesaid eyes, fixed on her with such
an expression of inquiry that they fully supplied the difficulty
he experienced in asking for Mr Bullion in words,--for he was a
foreigner, not much gifted with the graces of English pronunciation.
This little dark and inquisitive man came to the house two or
three times a-week, and spent several hours in close consultation
with Mr Bullion. On emerging from these councils, it was easy to
see, by that gentleman's countenance, whether the affair, whatever
it was, was in a prosperous condition or not. Sometimes he came
into the supper-room gloomy and silent, sometimes tripping in
like a sexagenarian Taglioni, and humming a French song,--for his
knowledge of that language was extraordinary,--and his whole idea
of a daughter's education seemed to be, to make her acquire the
true Parisian accent, and to read Molière and Corneille. So Louise,
to gratify the whim of her father, had made herself perfect in
the language, and could have entered into a correspondence with
Madame de Sevigné without a single false concord, or a mistake in
spelling. Who could this little man be, who had such influence
on her father's spirits? They watched him, but could see nothing
but the dark cloak and slouched hat, which disappeared down some
side street, and would have puzzled one of the detective police to
keep them in view. Her thoughts rested almost constantly on this
subject. Even at church--for they were regular church-goers, and
very decided Protestants, as far as their religious feelings could
be shown in hating the devil and the Pope--she used to watch her
father's face, but could read nothing there but a quiet devotion
during the prayers, and an amiable condescension while listening to
the sermon. Rustlings of papers as the little visitor slipt along
the passage, revealed the fact that there were various documents
required in their consultations; and on one particular occasion,
after an interview of unusual duration, Mr Bullion accompanied his
mysterious guest to the door, and was overheard, by the conclave
who were assembled in the little parlour for supper, very warm in
his protestations of obligation for the trouble he had taken, and
concluding with these remarkable words--"Assure his Excellency of
my highest consideration, and that I shall not lose a moment in
throwing myself at the feet of the King." Louise looked at Cecil on
hearing these words; and as Cecil would probably have been looking
at Louise, whether he had heard these words or not, their eyes
met with an expression of great bewilderment and surprise,--the
said bewilderment being by no means diminished when his visitor
replied--"His Excellency kisses your hands, and I leave your
Lordship in the holy keeping of the saints."

"Papa is rather flighty--don't you think so, Cecil?" said Louise.

"Both mad," answered that gentleman with a shake of the head.

"Mr Bullion is going to be Lord Mayor," said Miss Lucretia, with
a vivid remembrance of the flirtations and grandeurs of the
Mansion-house.

Mr Cocker said nothing aloud, and was sorely puzzled for a long
time, but ended with a confused notion, derived principally from the
protection of the saints, that his patron was likely to be Pope.
All, however, sank into a gaping silence of anticipation, when
Mr Bullion, after shutting the door, as soon as his visitor had
departed, began to whistle Malbrook, and came into the supper-room.


CHAPTER II.

"Enjoy yourselves, _mes enfants_," said the old gentleman; "I have
not kept you waiting, I hope. Miss Smith, I kiss your hand--_ma
fille, embrassemoi_."

"What's the matter with you, papa?" replied the young lady, and not
complying with the request; "you speak as if you were a foreigner.
Have you forgotten your mother-tongue?"

And certainly it was not difficult to perceive that there was an
unusual tone assumed by Mr Bullion, with the slightest possible
broken English admitted into his language.

"My mother-tongue?" said the senior. "Bah! 'tis not the time yet--I
have not forgot it--not quite--but kiss me, Louise."

"Well, since you speak like a Christian, I won't refuse; but do be a
good, kind, communicative old man, and tell us what has kept you so
long. Do tell us who that hideous man is."

"Hideous, my dear!--'tis plain you never saw him."

"He's like the bravo of Venice," said Louise; "isn't he, Cecil?"

"He's more like Guy Faux," said the gentleman appealed to.

"He's like a gipsy fortune-teller," continued Miss Smith.

"Uncommon like a 'ousebreaker," chimed in Mr Cocker: "I never see
such a rascally-looking countenance."

"Are you aware, all this time, that you are giving these
descriptions of a friend of mine,--a most learned, lofty,
reverend--but, pshaw! what nonsense it is, getting angry with folks
like you. Eagles should fight with eagles."

But the lofty assumptions of Mr Bullion made no impression on his
audience. One word, however, had stuck in the tympanum of Miss
Smith's ear, and was beating a tremendous tattoo in her heart--

"Reverend, did you say, brother-in-law. If that little man is
reverend, mark my words. I know very well what he's after. If we're
not all spirited off to the Disquisition in Spain, I wish I may
never be marr--I mean--saved."

"Nonsense, aunt," said Louise. "You're not going to turn Dissenter,
father?"

"Better that than be a Papist, anyhow," sulked out Lucretia.

"Miss Smith," said Mr Bullion, "have the kindness, madam, to make
no observation on what I do, or what friends I visit or receive in
this house. If the gentleman who has now left me were a Mahommedan,
he should be sacred from your impertinent remarks. Give me another
potato, and hold your tongue."

"To you, Mr Hope," continued the senior, "and to you, Mr Cocker,
and to you, Miss Lucretia, who are unmixed plebeians from your
remotest known ancestry, it may appear surprising that a man so
willingly undertakes the onerous duties entailed on him by his lofty
extraction, as to surrender the peace and contentment which he feels
to be the fitter accompaniments of your humble yet comfortable
position. For my daughter and me far other things are in store--we
sit on the mountain-top exposed to the tempest, though glorified by
the sunshine, and look without regret to the contemptible safety
and inglorious ease of the inhabitants of the vale. Take a glass of
wine, Mr Cocker. I shall always look on you with favour."

Mr Cocker took the glass as ordered, and supposed his patron was
repeating a passage out of Enfield's _Speaker_. "Fine language,
sir, very fine language, indeed! particular that about sunshine on
the mountains. A remarkable clever man, Mr Enfield; and I can say
Ossian's Address to the Sun myself."

But in the mean time Louisa walked round the table, and laid hold of
her father's hand, and putting her finger on his pulse, looked with
a face full of wisdom, while she counted the beats; and giving a
satisfied shake of the head, resumed her seat.

"A day or two's quiet will do, without a strait waistcoat," she
said; "but I will certainly tell the porter never to admit that
slouch-faced muffled-up impostor, who puts such nonsense into his
head."

But at this moment a violent pull at the bell startled them all.
When the door was opened a voice was heard in the hall which said,
"Pour un instant, Monseigneur;" whereupon Mr Bullion started up,
and replying, "Oui, mon père," hurried out of the room, and left his
party in more blank amazement than before.

The surmises, the exclamations, the whispers and suspicions that
passed from one to the other, it is needless to record; it will
suffice to say that, after an animated conversation with the
mysterious visitor, Mr Bullion once more joined the circle and said,
"You will be ready, all of you, to start for France to-morrow. I
have business of importance that calls for my presence in Tours. Say
not a word, but obey."


CHAPTER III.

So, in a week, they were all comfortably settled in a hotel at Tours.

Mr Bullion was sitting in the parlour, apparently in deep and
pleasant contemplation; for the corners of his mouth were
involuntarily turned up, and he inspected the calf of his leg with
self-satisfied admiration. Mr Cocker was on a chair in the corner,
probably multiplying the squares in the table-cover by the flowers
in the paper.

"How do you like France, Mr Cocker?" said Mr Bullion.

"Not at all, sir; the folks has no sense; and no wonder we always
wallop them by sea or land."

"Hem! Must I remind you, sir, that this is _my_ country; that the
French are my countrymen; and that you by no means wallop them
either by sea or land."

"_You_ French! _you_ Frenchman!" replied Mr Cocker; "that _is_
a joke! Bullion ain't altogether a French name, I think? No,
no; it smells of the bank; _it_ does. You ain't one of the
_parlevous_--_you_ ain't, that's certain."

"How often have I to order you, sir, not to doubt my word?" said Mr
Bullion; and emphacised his speech with a form of expression that is
generally considered a clencher.

"There! there!" cried Cocker, triumphant; "I told you so. Is there
ever a Frenchman could swear like that? They ain't Christians enough
to give such a jolly hearty curse as yourn; so you see, sir, it's no
go to pass yourself off for a _Mounseer_."

"Leave the room, sir, and send Mr Hope to me at once!"

Cocker obeyed, puzzled more and more at the fancy his master was
possessed with to deny his country.

"It would, perhaps, have been wiser," thought Mr Bullion, "to
have left the plebeian fools at home till everything was formally
completed; but still, nothing, I suppose, would have satisfied them
but the evidence of their own eyes."

"Mr Hope," he said, as that young gentleman entered the room, "sit
down beside me; nay, no ceremony, I shall always treat you with
condescension and regard."

"You are very good, sir."

"I am, sir; and I trust your conduct will continue such as to
justify me in remaining so. You may have observed, Mr Hope, a change
in my manner for some time past. You can't have been fool enough,
like Miss Smith and Mr Cocker, to doubt the reality of the fact I
stated, namely, that I am French by birth,--did you doubt it, sir?"

"Why, sir,--in fact--since you insist on an answer--"

"I see you did. Well, sir, I pity and pardon you. I will tell you
the whole tale, and then you will see that some alteration must take
place in our respective positions. In the neighbourhood of this
good city of Tours I was born. My father was chief of the younger
branch of one of the noblest houses in France,--the De Bouillons
of Chateau d'Or. He was wild, gay, thoughtless, and fell into
disgrace at court. He was imprisoned in the Bastille; his estates
confiscated; his name expunged from the book of nobility; and he
died poor, forgotten, and blackened in name and fame. I was fifteen
at the time. I took my father's sword into the Town Hall; I gave
it in solemn charge to the authorities, and vowed that when I had
succeeded in wiping off the blot from my father's name, and getting
it restored to its former rank, I would reclaim it at their hands,
and assume the state and dignity to which my birth entitled me. I
went to England; your father, my good Cecil, took me by the hand:
porter, clerk, partner, friend,--I rose through all the gradations
of the office; and when he died, he left me the highest trust he
could repose in anyone,--the guardianship of his son."

"I know sir,--and if I have never sufficiently thanked you for your
care--"

"Not that--no, no--I'm satisfied, my dear boy--and Louise--the
Lady Louise I must now call her--change of rank--duties of lofty
sphere--former friends--ill arranged engagements--" continued the
new-formed magnate in confusion, blurting out unconnected words,
that showed the train of his thoughts without expressing them
distinctly; while Mr Hope sat in amazement at what he had heard, but
no longer doubting the reality of what was said.

"Well, sir?" he inquired.

"I changed my name with my country, though retaining as much of the
sound of it as I could; and Louis Bullion was a complete disguise
for the expatriated Marquis de Bouillon de Chateau d'Or. I married
Miss Smith, and lost her shortly after Louise's birth. For years
I have been in treaty with the French ambassador through his
almoner, the Abbé, whose visits you thought so mysterious. At last
I succeeded, and to-morrow I claim my father's sword, resume the
hereditary titles of my house, and take my honoured place among the
peers and paladins of France."

"And have you informed Louise?"--inquired Cecil.

"Lady Louise," interrupted Mr Bullion.

"Of this change in her position?"

"Why, my dear Cecil, to tell you truth--it's not an easy matter to
get her to understand my meaning. Yesterday I attempted to explain
the thing, exactly as I have done to you; but instead of taking it
seriously, she began with one of her provoking chuckles, and chucked
me under the chin, and called me Marquy-darky. In fact, I wish the
explanation to come from you."

"I feel myself very unfit for the task," said the young man, who
foresaw that this altered situation might interfere with certain
plans of his own. "I hope you will excuse me; you can tell her the
whole affair yourself, for here she comes."

And the young lady accordingly made her appearance. After looking at
them for some time--

"What are you all so doleful about?" she began. "Has papa bitten
you too, Cecil? Pray don't be a duke--it makes people so very
ridiculous."

"Miss Louise--mademoiselle, I ought to say," said Mr Bullion, "I
have communicated certain facts to Cecil Hope."

"Which he doesn't believe--do you, Cecil?" interposed the daughter.

"He does believe them, and I beg you will believe them too. They are
simply, that I am a nobleman of the highest rank, and you are my
right honourable daughter."

"Oh, indeed! and how was our cousin Spain when you heard from
Madrid?--our uncle Austria, was he quite well?--was George of
England recovered of the gout?--and above all, how was uncle Smith,
the shipowner of Wapping?"

"Girl! you will drive me mad," replied the Marquis, "with your
Smiths and Wappings. I tell you, what I have said is really the
case, and to-morrow you will see the inauguration with your own
eyes. Meantime, I must dress, to receive a deputation of the
nobility of the province, who come to congratulate me on my arrival."

"Oh, what's this I hear," exclaimed Miss Smith, rushing into the
room, "are you a real marquis, Mr Bullion?"

"Yes, madam, I have that honour."

"And does the marriage with my sister stand good?"

"To be sure, madam."

"Then, I'm very glad of it. Oh how delightful!--to be my Lord this,
my Lady that. I am always devoted to the aristockicy; and now, only
to think I am one of them myself."

"How can you be so foolish, aunt?--I'm ashamed of you," said Louise;
"what terrible things you were telling me, an hour ago, of the
wickedness of the nobility?"

"Miss Smith, though she does not express herself in very correct
language, has more sensible ideas on this subject than you," said
the marquis, looking severely at his daughter, who was looking, from
time to time, with a malicious smile at the woe-begone countenance
of Cecil Hope. "Remember, madam, who it is you are," continued the
senior.

"La, papa! don't talk such nonsense," replied the irreverent
daughter. "Do you think I am eighteen years of age, and don't know
perfectly well who and what I am?"

"Three of your ancestors, madam, were Constables of France."

"That's nothing to boast of," returned Louise; "no, not if they had
been inspectors of police."

"You are incorrigible, girl, and have not sense enough to have a
proper feeling of family pride."

"Haven't I? Am I not proud of all the stories uncle David tells
us of his courage, when he was mate of an Indiaman? and aunt
Jenkison--don't you remember, sir, how she dined with us at
Christmas, and had to walk in pattens through the snow, and tumbled
in Cheapside?"

A laugh began to form itself round the eyes of the French magnate,
which made his countenance uncommonly like what it used to be when
it was that of an English merchant. Louise saw her success, and
proceeded.

"And how you said, when the poor old lady was brought home in a
chair, that it was the punch that did it?"

"He, he! and so it was. Didn't I caution her, all the time, that it
was old Jamaica rum?" broke out the father; but checked himself, as
if he were guilty of some indecorum.

"And don't you remember how we all attended the launch of uncle
Peter's ship, the Hope's Return? Ah, they were happy days, father!
weren't they?"

"No, madam; no--vulgar, miserable days: forget them as quick as you
can. I tell you, when you resume your proper sphere, every eye will
be turned to your beauty: nobles will be dying at your feet."

"I trust not, sir," hurriedly burst in Mr Hope. "I don't see what
right any nobles will have to be dying at Louise's feet."

"Don't you, sir?" said Louise. "Indeed! I beg to tell you, that as
many as choose shall die at my feet. I'll trouble you, Mr Hope,
not to interfere with the taste of any nobleman who has a fancy to
so queer a place for his death-bed." But while she said this, she
tapped him so playfully with her little white hand, and looked at
him so kindly with her beautiful blue eyes, that the young gentleman
seemed greatly reassured; and in a few minutes, as if tired of the
conversation, betook himself to the other room.


CHAPTER IV.

Suddenly a great noise was heard in the street, and interrupted the
lectures of father and aunt on the dignity of position and the pride
of birth. Miss Lucretia and Louise ran to the window, and saw a
cavalcade of carriages, with outriders, and footmen on the rumble,
and all the stately accompaniments of the old-fashioned family
coach, which, after a slow progress along the causeway, stopped at
the hotel door.

"My friends! my noble friends!" exclaimed the marquis; "and I in
this miserable dress!"

"The noble men! the salts of the earth!" equally exclaimed Miss
Smith; "and I in my morning gownd!"

Saying this, she hastily fled into her bed-room, which, according to
the fashion of French houses, opened on the sitting-room, and left
the father and Louise alone.

The father certainly was in no fitting costume for the dignity
of his new character. He was dressed according to the fashion of
the respectable London trader of his time--a very fitting figure
for 'Change, but not appropriate to the Marquis de Bouillon de
Chateau d'Or. Nor, in fact, was his disposition much more fitted
for his exalted position than his clothes. To all intents and
purposes, he was a true John Bull: proud of his efforts to attain
wealth--proud of his success--proud of the freedom of his adopted
land--and, in his secret heart, thinking an English merchant
several hundred degrees superior in usefulness and worth to all the
marquises that ever lived on the smiles of the Grand Monarque. The
struggle, therefore, that went on within him was the most ludicrous
possible. To his family and friends he presented that phase of his
individuality that set his nobility in front; to the French nobles,
on the other hand, he was inclined to show only so much of himself
as presented the man of bills and invoices; and in both conditions,
by a wonderful process of reasoning, in which we are all adepts,
considered himself raised above the individuals he addressed.

"Did they see you at the window?" he said, in some trepidation,
while the visitors were descending from their coaches.

"To be sure," replied Louise; "and impudent-looking men they were."

"Ah! that's a pity. Do, for heaven's sake, my dear, just slip in
beside your aunt. They are a very gay polite people, the nobles of
France--"

"Well; and what then?"

"And they might take ways of showing it, we are not used to in
England. Do hide yourself, my dear--there, that's a good girl."
And just as he had succeeded in pushing her into the bedroom, and
begged her to lock herself in, the landlord of the hotel ushered
four or five noblemen into the apartment, as visitors to the
Marquis de Bouillon. The eldest of the strangers--about forty years
old--bespangled with jewels, and ornamented with two or three stars
and ribbons, looked with some surprise on the plainly drest and
citizen-mannered man, who came forward to welcome them.

"We came to pay our compliments to my lord the Marquis de Bouillon
de Chateau d'Or."

"And very glad he is to see you, gentlemen," said their host.

"You?--impossible! He speaks with an English accent."

"An impostor!" replied another of the nobles, to whom the last
sentence had been addressed in a whisper."

"I am, indeed,--and truly glad to make your acquaintance, I assure
you."

"Well," resumed the Frenchman, "let me present to you the Viscount
de Lanoy--the Baron Beauvilliers--the Marquis de Croissy--for
myself, I'm Duc de Vieuxchateau."

"Sit down, gentlemen--I beg," said De Bouillon, after bowing to the
personages named. "A charming place this Tours, and I'm very glad to
see you--fine weather, gentlemen."

"I trust you have come with the intention of residing among us. Your
estates, I conclude, are restored along with your titles."

"No, gentlemen, they're not. But we may manage to buy some of them
back again. How's land here?"

"Land?" inquired the duke, rather bewildered with the question.

"Yes--how is it, as to rent? How much an acre?"

"'Pon my word, I don't know. When I want money I tell the steward,
and the people--the--serfs, I suppose, they are--who hold the plough
and manage the land--give him some, and he brings it to me."

"Oh! but you don't know how many years' purchase it's worth?"

To this there was no answer--statistics, at that time, not being a
favourite study in France.

"But, marquis," inquired another, "hasn't the King restored you your
manorial rights--your _droits de seigneur_?"

"No, sir."

"Then what's the use of land without them?" was the very pertinent
rejoinder.

"What are they, sir?" inquired the marquis.

"Why, if a tenant of yours has a pretty daughter," said one.

"Or a wife," said another.

"Or even a niece," said a third.

"Well, sir, what then? I don't take."

"Oh, you're a wag, marquis!" replied the duke. "Didn't I see, as we
stopt before your window, a countenance radiant with beauty?"

"Eyes like stars," chimed in another.

"Cheeks like roses. Aha! Monsieur le Marquis--who was it?--come!"

"Why, that,--oh, that,--that's a young lady under my protection,
gentlemen; and I must beg you to change the conversation."

"Indeed! you're a lucky fellow! The old fool mustn't be allowed to
keep such beauty to himself."

"Certainly not," returned the vicomte, also in a whisper.

"Lucky!" said De Bouillon--"yes, gentlemen, I am lucky. If you knew
all, you would think so, I'm sure."

"She loves you, then, old simpleton?"

"I think she does--I know she does--"

"May we not ask the honour of being presented?"

"Some other time, gentlemen--not now--she's not here--she's gone out
for a walk."

"Impossible, my dear lord; we must have met her as we came up
stairs."

"She has a headache--she's gone to lie down for a few minutes," said
the marquis, getting more and more anxious to keep Louise from the
intrusion of his visitors.

"I have an excellent cure for headaches of all kinds," exclaimed
the baron, and proceeded towards the bed-room door. The Marquis de
Bouillon, however, put himself between; but the duke and vicomte
pulled him aside, and the baron began to rat-tat on the door.

"Come forth, madam!" he began, "we are dying for a sight of your
angelic charms. De Bouillon begs you to honour us with your
presence. Hark, she's coming!" he added, and drew back as he heard
the bolt withdrawn on the other side.

"Stay where you are! don't come out!" shouted De Bouillon, still in
the hands of his friends. "I charge you, don't move a step!" But his
injunctions were vain; the door opened, and, sailing majestically
into the room, drest out in hoop and furbelow, and waving her fan
affectedly before her face, appeared Miss Lucretia Smith--

"Did you visit to see me, gentlemen? I'm always delighted to see any
one as is civil enough to give us a forenoon call."

The French nobles, however, felt their ardour damped to an
extraordinary degree, and replied by a series of the most respectful
salaams.

"Profound veneration," "deepest reverence," and other expressions
of the same kind, were muttered by each of the visiters; and in a
short time they succeeded, in spite of Miss Lucretia's reiterated
invitations, in bowing themselves out of the room. They were
accompanied by the marquis to their carriages, while Miss Smith was
gazing after them, astonished, more than pleased, at the wonderful
politeness of their manner. Louise slipt out of the bed-room, and
slapt her astonished aunt upon the shoulder--

"You've done it, aunt!--you've done it now! A word from you recalls
these foreigners to their senses."

"It gives me a high opinion," replied Miss Smith, "of them French.
They stand in perfect awe of dignity and virtue."


CHAPTER V.

Great were the discussions, all that day, among the English party in
the hotel--the father concealing his disappointment at the behaviour
of his fellow nobles, under an exaggerated admiration of rank, and
all its attributes; Louise professing to chime in with her father's
ideas, for the pleasant purpose of vexing Cecil Hope; Mr Cocker
still persuading himself the Frenchmanship of his old master was a
little bit of acting that would end as soon as the curtain fell; and
Miss Lucretia devising means of making up for her failures with so
many curates, by catching a veritable duke. With the next morning
new occupations began. The marquis, dressed in the fantastic apparel
of a French courtier, exchanged compliments with his daughter,
who was also magnificently attired, to do honour to the occasion.
Mr Hope tried in vain to get her to sink from the lofty style she
assumed, and had strong thoughts of setting off for Hertfordshire,
and marrying a farmer's daughter out of revenge. The father was so
carried away by family pride, and the daughter enjoyed the change
in her rank so heartily, that there seemed no room in the heart
of either for so prosaic a being as a plain English squire. And
yet, every now and then, there gleamed from the corner of Louise's
eye, or stole out in a merry tone of her voice, the old familiar
feeling, so that he could not altogether give way to despair, but
waited in patience what the chapter of accidents might bring. At
one o'clock the marquis set off for the town-hall, where he was to
go through the ceremony of reclaiming his father's sword, and have
the blot on the scutcheon formally removed; after which he was to
entertain the town authorities, and the neighbouring nobility, at
dinner; the evening to conclude with a ball, in the preparation for
which the ladies were to be left at home. Mr Hope accompanied him
to the door of the town-hall,--but there he professed to find his
feelings overpowered, and declined to witness the ceremony that,
he said, broke the connexion which had existed so long between the
names of Hope and Bullion; but, ere he could return to the hotel,
several things had occurred that had a material influence on his
prospects, and these we must now proceed to relate. Miss Lucretia
Smith continued her oratory in the ears of her devoted niece after
the gentlemen had gone, the burden thereof consisting, principally,
in a comparison between the nobles of France and the shopocracy
of London,--till that young lady betook herself to the bedroom
window already mentioned, to watch for Cecil's return. She had
not been long at her watch-post, when a carriage, with the blinds
drawn up, and escorted by seven or eight armed men, with masks on
their faces, pulled up at the door. Of this she took no particular
notice, but kept looking attentively down the street. But, a minute
or two after the closed carriage drove under the _porte cochère_,
a young gentleman was ushered into the presence of Miss Smith, and
was, by that young lady, received with the highest _empressement_
possible. She had only had time to improve her toilette by putting
on Louise's shawl and bonnet, which happened to be lying on a chair;
and, in spite of the shortness of the view she had had of him the
day before, she immediately recognised him as one of her brother's
visiters, the Baron Beauvilliers.

"Permit me, madam," he said, in very good English, "to apologise for
my intrusion, but I have the authority of my friend De Bouillon to
consider myself here at home."

"Oh, sir, you are certainly the politest nation on the face of the
earth, you French--that I must say; but I may trust, I hope, to
the honour of a gent like you? You won't be rude to an unoffended
female? for there ain't a soul in the 'ouse that could give me the
least assistance."

The baron bowed in a very assuring manner, and, taking a seat beside
her, "May I make bold, madam, to ask who the tawdry silly-looking
young person is who resides under De Bouillon's protection?"

"Sir--under Mr Bull--I mean, under the marquee's protection? I don't
understand you."

"Exactly as I suspected. I guessed, from the dignity of your
appearance, that such an infamous proceeding was entirely unknown
to you. Command my services, madam, in any way you can make them
available. Let me deliver you from the scandal of being in the same
house with a person of that description."

"Oh, sir!" replied Miss Smith, "you are certainly most obliging.
When we are a little better acquainted perhaps--in a few days,
or even in one--I shall be happy to accept your offer; but, la!
what will my brother-in-law say if I accept a gentleman's offer at
minute's notice?"

Miss Smith accompanied this speech with various blushes and pauses,
betokening the extent of her modest reluctance; but the baron either
did not perceive the mistake she had made, or did not think it worth
while to notice it.

"I will convey the destroyer of your peace away from your sight.
Show me only the room she is in. And consider, madam, that you will
make me the proudest of men by allowing me to be your knight and
champion on this occasion."

"Really, sir, I can't say at present where the gipsy can be.
Brother-in-law has been very sly; but if I can possibly ferret her
out, won't I send her on her travels? Wait but a minute, sir: I'll
come to you the moment she can be found."

But the baron determined to accompany her in her search, and
together they left the room, two active members of the Society for
the Suppression of Vice. Louise had heard the noise of voices,
without distinguishing or attending to what was said, but a low and
hurried tap at the door now attracted her notice.

"Miss Louise--ma'am--for heaven's sake, come out!" said the voice of
Mr Cocker through the key-hole; "for here's a whole regiment of them
French, and they wants to run away with YOU."

"With me, Cocker!" exclaimed Louise, coming into the parlour. "What
is it you mean?"

"What I say, miss--and your aunt is as bad as any on 'em. She's
searching the house, at this moment, to give you tip into their
hands. She can't refuse nothing to them noblesse, as she calls 'em.
The gentleman has gone down to the court-yard to see that nobody
escapes, and here we are, like mice in a trap."

"Go for Cecil, Cocker; leave me to myself," said Louise--her
features dilating into tiger-like beauty, with rage and
self-confidence. "Go, I tell you--you'll find him returning from the
town-hall--and bid him lose not a moment in coming to my help." She
waved Mr Cocker impatiently from her, and returned for a moment into
the bed-room.

"Madam, hist! I beg you will be quick!" exclaimed the baron,
entering the parlour; "I can't wait much longer. What a detestable
old fool it is!" he went on, in a lower voice; "she might have
found the girl long ere this. "Well, well, have you found her?" he
continued, addressing Louise, who issued from the bed-room in some
of the apparel of her aunt, and assuming as nearly as she could the
airs and graces of that individual. "Tell me, madam, where she is."

"La! sir, how is one to find out these things in a moment--besides,
they ain't quite proper subjects for a young lady to be concerned
with," replied Louise, keeping her bashful cheek from the sight of
the baron with her enormous fan.

"Then, madam, point with that lovely finger of yours, and I shall
make the discovery myself."

Louise pointed, as required, to the gallery, along which, at that
moment, her quick eye caught the step of Miss Lucretia; and the
baron, going to the door, gave directions to his attendants to seize
the lady, and carry her without loss of time to the Parc d'Amour,
a hotel on the outskirts of Tours. He then closed the door, and
listened--no less than did Louise--to the execution of his commands.

"There, madam," he said, as the scuffle of seizure and a very faint
scream were heard, "they've got her! Your pure presence shall never
more be polluted by her society. A naughty man old De Bouillon, and
unaccustomed to the strict morality of France. Adieu!"

"Adieu, sir!" said Louise; but there was a tone in her voice, or
something in her manner, that called the attention of her visitor.
He went up to her, laid his hand upon the fan, and revealed before
him, beautiful from alarm and indignation, was the face of Louise de
Bouillon! "So, madam! this was an excellent device, but I have more
assistance at hand. Ho! Pierre! François!" he began to call. "I have
another carriage in the yard--you sha'nt escape me so."

"Stop, sir!" exclaimed Louise, and placed herself between him and
the door. "These are not the arts of wooing we are used to in
England. I expected more softness and persuasion."

"Alas, madam, 'tis only the shortness of the opportunity that
prevents me from making a thousand protestations. But, after all,
what is the use of them? Ho! François!"

As he said this, he approached nearer to Louise, and even laid his
hand upon her arm. But with the quickness of lightning, she made
a dart at the diamond-covered hilt of her assailant's sword, and
pulling it from the sheath, stood with the glittering point within
an inch of the Frenchman's eyes.

"Back, back!" she cried, "or you are a dead man--or frog--or
monkey--or whatever you are!"

Each of these names was accompanied with a step in advance; and
there was too savage a lustre in her look to allow the unfortunate
baron to doubt for a moment that his life was in the highest peril.

"Madam," he expostulated, "do be careful--'tis sharp as a needle."

"Back, back!" she continued, advancing with each word upon his
retreating steps--"you thread-paper--you doll-at-a-fair--you stuffed
cockatoo--back, back!" And on arriving at the bed-room door, she
gave a prodigiously powerful lunge in advance, and drove her victim
fairly into the room, and, with an exclamation of pride and triumph,
locked him in. But, exhausted with the excitement, she had only time
to lay the sword on the table, wave the key three times round her
head in sign of victory, and fall fainting into the arms of Cecil
Hope, who at that moment rushed into the room.


CHAPTER VI.

The ceremony in the town-hall passed off with the greatest _éclât_;
and the dinner was probably thought the finest part of the day's
entertainment by all but the newly re-established noble himself.
Flushed with the glories of the proceeding, and also with the wine
he had swallowed to his own health and happiness, he sallied forth
with his friends of the preceding day--except, of course, the
Baron Beauvilliers--and, as he himself expressed it, was awake for
anything, up to any lark.

"A lark, says my lord?" inquired the Duke de Vieuxchateau.

"Ay," replied the marquis, "if it's as big as a turkey, all the
better. That champaign is excellent tipple, and would be cheap at
eighty-four shillings per dozen."

The French nobles did not quite understand their companion's
phraseology, but were quite willing to join him in any extravagance.

"What shall we do?" cried one; "shall we break open the jail?"

"No," said De Bouillon: "hang it! that's a serious matter. But I'll
tell you what, I've no objection to knock down a charley."

"No, no! let's go to _Rouge et Noir_."

"Boys, boys!" at last exclaimed the Vicomte de Lanoy, "I'll tell
you what we shall do,--Beauvilliers told me that, while we were all
engaged at the dinner, he was going to seize a beautiful creature,
and carry her off to the Parc d'Amour."

"Wrong, decidedly wrong!" said De Bouillon at this proposition. "Who
is she?"

"Why, the companion, you understand, of an old twaddling fool, who
has no right to so much beauty. Beauvilliers did not tell me his
name, but 'tis only one of the _bourgeoisie_, and we surely have a
right to do as we like with _them_."

"Ah yes! of course," replied De Bouillon, "I did not think of that.
What then?"

"Why, sir, we shall play as good a trick on Beauvilliers as he
designed for the ancient gentleman. Let's get there before him, and
carry her from him!"

"Agreed, agreed!"

"No, no, I must declare off," said the marquis. "'Tis a bad business
altogether, and this would make it worse."

"But who is to carry the lady?" inquired the duke, without attending
to the scruples of his friend.

"Toss for it," suggested the vicomte. A louis was thrown into the
air. "Heads! heads!" cried the nobleman. "Tails!" said De Bouillon.

"'Tis tails!" exclaimed the vicomte. "Marquis, the chance is
yours--you've won."

"Oh! have I?" replied the unwilling favourite of fortune; "I've won,
have I?"

"You don't seem overpleased with your good luck," said the duke;
"give me your chance, and I shall know how to make better use of it."

"No, gentlemen, I'll manage this affair myself."

"Come on, then!--_vive la joie!_"--and with great joviality they
pursued their way to the Parc d'Amour.

But they had been preceded in their journey to that hostelry by
Louise, attended by Cecil Hope and Mr Cocker. By the administration
of a douceur to the waiter, they obtained an _entrée_ to the
apartment designed for the baron and his prey, and had scarcely time
to ensconce themselves behind the window-curtain, when Miss Lucretia
was escorted into the room. There were no symptoms of any violent
resistance to her captors having been offered, and she took her seat
on the sofa without any perceptible alarm.

"Well, them's curious people, them French!" she soliloquised when
the men had left her. "If that 'ere baron fell in love with a body,
couldn't he say so without all that rigmarole about Mr Bullion's
behaviour, and pulling a body nearly to pieces? I'm sure if he had
axed me in a civil way, I wouldn't have said no. But, lawkins! here
he comes."

So saying, she enveloped herself in Louise's shawl, and pulled
Louise's bonnet farther on her face, and prepared to enact the part
of an offended, yet not altogether unforgiving beauty. But the
door, on being slowly opened, presented, not the countenance of the
baron, but the anxious face of Mr Bullion himself. The three French
nobles pushed him forward. "Go on," they said; "make the best use
of your eloquence. We will watch here, and guard the door against
Beauvilliers himself."

The marquis, now thoroughly sobered, slowly advanced: "If I can save
this poor creature from the insolence of those _roués_, it will be
well worth the suffering it has cost. Trust to me, madam," he said,
in a very gentle voice, to the lady: "I will not suffer you to be
insulted while I live. Come with me, madam, and you shall not be
interrupted by ever a French profligate alive." On looking closely
at the still silent lady on the sofa, he was startled at recognising
a dress with which he was well acquainted.

"In the name of heaven!" he said, "I adjure you to tell me who you
are. Are you--is it possible--can you be my Louise!"

"No, Mr Bullion," replied Miss Lucretia, lifting up the veil,
and turning round to the trembling old man. "And I must say I'm
considerably surprised to find you in a situation like this."

"And you, madam--yourself--how came you here?"

"A young gentleman--nobleman, I should say--ran off with me here,
and I expected him every minute when you came in."

"And Louise?" inquired the father, in an agitated voice--"when did
you leave her? Oh! my folly to let her a moment out of my sight!--to
reject Cecil Hope!--to bedizen myself in this ridiculous fashion!
Where, oh where is Louise?"

"Here, sir," exclaimed that lady, coming forward from behind the
window-curtain.

"And safe? Ah! but I need not ask. I see two honest Englishmen by
your side."

"And one of them, sir, says he'll never leave it," said Louise.

"Stop a moment," replied the marquis. "Ho! gentlemen, come in."

At his request his companions entered the room.

"Gentlemen," said the marquis, "when I determined to reclaim my
father's sword, I expected to find it bright as Bayard's, and
unstained with infamy or dishonour. When I wished to resume my
title, I hoped to find it a sign of the heroic virtues of my
ancestors, but not a cloak for falsehood and vice. I warn you,
sirs, your proceedings will be fatal to your order, and to your
country. For myself, I care not for this sword,"--he threw it on
the ground--"this filagree I despise,"--he took off his star and
ribbon--"and I advise you to leave this chamber as fast as you can
find it convenient."

The French nobles obeyed.

"Here, Cocker! off with all this silk and satin; get me my gaiters
and flaxen wig; and, please Heaven, one week will see us in the
little room above the warehouse."

"Preparing, sir, to move into Hertfordshire?" inquired Louise,
leaning on Cecil's arm.

"Ay, my child; and, in remembrance of this adventure, we shall hang
up among the pictures in the hall,

  THE SWORD OF HONOUR."



MEMOIRS OF KIRKALDY OF GRANGE.[24]

  [24] _Memoirs and Adventures of Sir Wm. Kirkaldy of Grange, Knight_,
  &c. &c. WM. BLACKWOOD & SONS, Edinburgh and London.


It must be allowed that a perusal of Scottish history betrays more
anomalies than are to be found in the character of almost any other
people. It is not without reason that our southern neighbours
complain of the difficulty of thoroughly understanding our national
idiosyncrasy. At one time we appear to be the most peaceable race
upon the surface of the earth--quiet, patient, and enduring;
stubborn, perhaps, if interfered with, but, if let alone, in no way
anxious to pick a quarrel. Take us in another mood, and gunpowder is
not more inflammable. We are ready to go to the death, for a cause
about which an Englishman would not trouble himself; and amongst
ourselves, we divide into factions, debate, squabble, and fight with
an inveteracy far more than commensurate with the importance of the
quarrel. Sometimes we seem to have no romance; at other times we are
perfect Quixotes. The amalgamated blood of the Saxon and the Celt
seems, even in its union, to display the characteristics of either
race. We rush into extremes: one day we appear over-cautious, and on
the next, the _perfervidum ingenium Scotorum_ prevails.

If these remarks be true as applied to the present times, they
become still more conspicuous when we regard the troublous days of
our ancestors. At one era, as in the reign of David I., we find
the Scottish nation engaged, heart and soul, in one peculiar phase
of religious excitement. Cathedrals and abbeys are starting up in
every town. All that infant art can do--and yet, why call it infant,
since, in architecture at least, it has never reached a higher
maturity?--is lavished upon the structure of our fanes. Melrose, and
Jedburgh, and Holyrood, and a hundred more magnificent edifices,
rise up like exhalations throughout a poor and barren country; the
people are proud in their faith, and perhaps even prouder in the
actual splendour of their altars. A few centuries roll by, and we
find the same nation deliberately undoing and demolishing the works
of their forefathers. Hewn stone and carved cornices, tracery,
mullions, and buttresses, have now become abominations in their
sight. Not only must the relics of the saints be scattered to the
winds of heaven, and their images ground into dust, but every church
in which these were deposited or displayed, must be dismantled as
the receptacle of pollution. The hammer swings again, but not with
the same pious purpose as of yore. Once it was used to build; now
it is heaved to destroy. Aisle and archway echo to the thunder of
its strokes, and, amidst a roar of iconoclastic wrath, the venerable
edifice goes down. Another short lapse of time, and we are lamenting
the violence of the past, and striving to prop, patch up, and
rebuild what little remnant has been spared of the older works of
devotion.

The same anomalies will be found if we turn from the ecclesiastical
to the political picture. Sometimes there is a spirit of loyalty
manifested, for which it would be difficult to find a parallel. The
whole nation gathers round the person of James IV.; and earl and
yeoman, lord and peasant, chief and vassal, lay down their lives
at Flodden for their king. His successor James V., in no respect
unworthy of his crown, dies of a broken heart, deserted by his peers
and their retainers. The unfortunate Mary, welcomed to her country
with acclamation, is made the victim of the basest intrigues, and
forced to seek shelter, and find death in the dominions of her
treacherous enemy. The divine right, in its widest meaning and
acceptation, is formally recognised by the Scottish estates as the
attribute of James VII.; three years afterwards, a new convention
is prompt to recognise an alien. Half a century further on, we are
found offering the gage of battle to England in support of the
exiled family.

This singular variety of mood, of which the foregoing are a
few instances, is no doubt partly attributable to the peculiar
relationship which existed between the crown and the principal
nobility. The latter were not cousins by courtesy only--they were
intimately connected with the royal family, and some of them were
near the succession. Hence arose jealousy amongst themselves, a
system of feud and intrigue, which was perpetuated for centuries,
and a constant effort, on the part of one or other of the
conflicting magnates, to gain possession and keep custody of the
royal person, whenever minority or weakness appeared to favour the
attempt. But we cannot help thinking, that the disposition of the
people ought also to be taken into account. Fierce when thwarted,
and with a memory keenly retentive of injury, the Scotsman is in
reality a much more impulsive being than his southern neighbour. His
sense of justice and order is not so strongly developed, but his
passion glows with a fire all the more intense because to outward
appearance it is smothered. His ideas of social duty are different
from those of the Englishman. Kindred is a closer tie--identity of
name and family is a bond of singular union. Clanship, in the broad
acceptation of the word, has died out for all practical purposes;
chieftainship is still a recognised and a living principle. The
feudal times, though gone, have left their traces on the national
character. Little as baronial sway, too often tantamount to sheer
oppression, can have contributed towards the happiness of the
people, we still recur to the history of these troublous days with a
relish and fondness which can hardly be explained, save through some
undefined and subtle sympathy of inheritance. Though the objects for
which they contended are now mere phantoms of speculation we yet
continue to feel and to speak as if we were partisans of the cause
of our ancestors, and to contest old points with as much ardour as
though they were new ones of living interest to ourselves.

We have been led into this strain of thought by the perusal of a
work, strictly authentic as a history, and yet as absorbing in
interest as the most coloured and glowing romance. Sir William
Kirkaldy of Grange, the subject of these Memoirs, played a most
conspicuous part in the long and intricate struggles which convulsed
Scotland, from the death of James V. until the latter part of the
reign of Queen Mary. Foremost in battle and in council, we find his
name prominently connected with every leading event of the period,
and his influence and example held in higher estimation than those
of noblemen who were greatly his superiors in rank, following,
and fortune. In fact, Kirkaldy achieved, by his own talent and
indomitable valour, a higher reputation, and exercised, for a time,
a greater influence over the destinies of the nation, than was ever
before possessed by a private Scottish gentleman, with the glorious
exception of Wallace. In an age when the sword was the sole arbiter
of public contest and of private quarrel, it was a proud distinction
to be reputed, not only at home but abroad--not only by the voice of
Scotland, but by that of England and France--the best and bravest
soldier, and the most accomplished cavalier of his time. Mixed up in
the pages of general history, too often turbidly and incoherently
written, the Knight of Grange may not be estimated, in the scale of
importance, at the level of such personages as the subtle Moray, or
the vindictive and treacherous Morton: viewed as all individual,
through the medium of these truthful and most fascinating memoirs,
he will be found at least their equal as a leader and a politician,
and far their superior as a generous and heroic man.

His father, Sir James Kirkaldy, was a person of no mean family or
reputation. He occupied, for a considerable time, the office of Lord
High Treasurer of Scotland, and, according to our author--

     "Enjoyed, in a very high degree, the favour and confidence of
     King James V.; and though innumerable efforts were made by his
     mortal foe Cardinal Beatoun, and others, to bring him into
     disgrace as a promoter of the Reformation, they all proved
     ineffectual, and the wary old baron maintained his influence to
     the last."

Old Sir James seems to have been one of those individuals with whom
it is neither safe nor pleasant to differ in opinion. According
to his brother-in-law, Sir James Melville of Halhill, he was "a
stoute man, who always offered, by single combate, and at point of
the sword, to maintain whatever he said;" a testimonial which, we
observe, has been most fitly selected as the motto of this book, the
son having been quite as much addicted to the wager of battle as the
father; nor, though a strenuous supporter of the Reformation, does
he appear to have imbibed much of that meekness which is inculcated
by holy writ. He was not the sort of man whom John Bright would have
selected to second a motion at a Peace Congress; indeed, the mere
sight of him would have caused the voice of Elihu Burritt to subside
into a quaver of dismay. Cardinal Beatoun, that proud and licentious
prelate, to whose tragical end we shall presently have occasion to
advert, was the personal and bitter enemy of the Treasurer, as he
was of every other independent Scotsman who would not truckle to his
power. But James V., though at times too facile, would not allow
himself to be persuaded into so dangerous an act as countenancing
prosecutions for heresy against any of his martial subjects; and,
so long as he lived, the over-weening bigotry and arrogance of
the priesthood were held in check. But other troubles brought the
good king to an untimely end. James had mortally offended some of
his turbulent nobles, by causing the authority of the law to be
vindicated without respect to rank or person. He had deservedly won
for himself the title of King of the Commons; and was, in fact, even
in that early age, bent upon a thorough reform of the abuses of
the feudal system. But he had proud, jealous, and stubborn men to
deal with. They saw, not without apprehension for their own fate,
that title and birth were no longer accepted as palliatives of
sedition and crime; that the inroads, disturbances, and harryings
which they and their fathers had practised, were now regarded with
detestation by the crown, and threatened with merited punishment.
Some strong but necessary examples made them quail for their future
supremacy, and discontent soon ripened into something like absolute
treason. Add to this, that for a long time the nobility of Scotland
had fixed a covetous eye upon the great possessions of the church.
In no country of Europe, considering its extent and comparative
wealth, was the church better endowed than in Scotland; and the
endeavours of the monks, who, with all their faults, were not blind
to the advantages derivable from the arts of peace, had greatly
raised their property in point of value. The confiscations which
had taken place in Protestantised England, whereof Woburn Abbey may
be cited as a notable example, had aroused to the fullest extent
the cupidity of the rapacious nobles. They longed to see the day
when, unsupported by the regal power, the church lands in Scotland
could be annexed by each iron-handed baron to his own domain; when,
at the head of their armed and dissolute jackmen, they could oust
the feeble possessors of the soil from the heritages they had so
long enjoyed as a corporation, and enrich themselves by plundering
the consecrated stores of the abbeys. These were the feelings
and desires which led most of them to lend a willing ear to the
preaching of the fathers of the Reformation. They were desirous, not
only of lessening the royal authority, but of transferring the whole
property of the clergy to themselves; and this double object led to
a combination which resulted in the passive defeat of the Scottish
army at Solway Moss.

Poor King James could not bear up against the shock of this shameful
desertion. Mr Tytler thus describes his latter moments:--

     "When in this state, intelligence was brought him that his queen
     had given birth to a daughter. At another time it would have
     been happy news; but now, it seemed to the poor monarch the
     last drop of bitterness which was reserved for him. Both his
     sons were dead. Had this child been a boy, a ray of hope, he
     seemed to feel, might yet have visited his heart; he received
     the messenger and was informed of that event without welcome
     or almost recognition; but wandering back in his thoughts to
     the time when the daughter of Bruce brought to his ancestor
     the dowry of the kingdom, observed with melancholy emphasis,
     'It came with a lass, and it will pass with a lass.' A few of
     his most favoured friends and counsellers stood around his
     couch; the monarch stretched out his hand for them to kiss; and
     regarding them for some moments with a look of great sweetness
     and placidity, turned himself upon the pillow and expired. He
     died 13th December 1542, in the thirty-first year of his age,
     and the twenty-ninth of his reign; leaving an only daughter,
     Mary, an infant of six days old, who succeeded to the crown."

Amongst those who stood around that memorable deathbed were the
Lord High Treasurer, young William Kirkaldy his son, and Cardinal
Beatoun. There was peace for a moment over the body of the anointed
dead!

But even the death of a king makes a light impression on this busy
and intriguing world. The struggle for mastery now commenced in
right earnest--for the only wall which had hitherto separated the
contending factions of the nobility and the clergy had given way.
Beatoun and Arran were both candidates for the regency, which the
latter succeeded in gaining; and, after a temporary alienation,
these two combined against an influence which began to show itself
in a threatening form. Henry VIII. of England considered this an
excellent opportunity for carrying out those designs against the
independence of the northern country, which had been entertained
by several of his predecessors; and for that purpose he proposed
to negotiate a marriage between his son Edward and the Princess
Mary. Such an alliance was of course decidedly opposed to the views
of the Catholic party in Scotland, and, moreover, was calculated
to excite the utmost jealousy of the Scottish people, who well
understood the true but recondite motive of the proposal. So long as
Beatoun, whose interest was identified with that of France, existed,
Henry was fully aware that his scheme never could be carried into
execution; and accordingly, with that entire want of principle which
he exhibited on every occasion, he took advantage of their position
to tamper with the Scottish barons who had been made prisoners at
Solway Moss. In this he so far succeeded, that a regular conspiracy
was entered into for the destruction of the cardinal, and only
defeated by his extreme sagacity and caution. It will be seen
hereafter that the cardinal did not fall a victim to this dastardly
English plot, but to private revenge, no doubt augmented and
inflamed by the consideration of his arrogance and cruelty.

Beatoun, one of the most able and also dissolute men of his day,
was a younger son of the Laird of Balfour--yet had, notwithstanding
every disadvantage, contrived very early to attain his high
position. He was hated, not only by the nobility, but by the
lesser barons, from whose own ranks he had risen, on account of
his intolerable pride, his rapacity, and the unscrupulous manner
in which he chose to exercise his power. Among the barons of Fife,
always a disunited and wrangling county, he had few adherents: and
with the Kirkaldys, and their relatives, the Melvilles, he had an
especial quarrel. Shortly after the death of James, the Treasurer
was dismissed from his office, an affront which the "stoute man"
was not likely to forget; and his son, then a mere youth, seems to
have participated in his feelings. But the cruelty of Beatoun was
at least the nominal cause which led to his destruction. Wishart,
the famous Reforming preacher, had fallen into the hands of the
cardinal, and was confined in his castle of St Andrews, of which our
author gives us the following faithful sketch:--

     "On the rocky shore, to the northward of the venerable city of
     St Andrews, stand the ruins of the ancient Episcopal palace, in
     other years the residence of the primates of Scotland. Those
     weatherbeaten remains, now pointed out to visitors by the
     ciceroni of the place, present only the fragments of an edifice
     erected by Archbishop Hamilton, the successor of Cardinal
     Beatoun, and are somewhat in the style of an antique Scottish
     manor-house; but very different was the aspect of that vast
     bastille which had the proud cardinal for lord, and contained
     within its massive walls all the appurtenances requisite for
     ecclesiastical tyranny, epicurean luxury, lordly grandeur,
     and military defence--at once a fortress, a monastery, an
     inquisition, and a palace.

     "The sea-mews and cormorants screaming among the wave-beaten
     rocks and bare walls now crumbling on that bleak promontory,
     and echoing only to drenching surf, as it rolls up the rough
     shelving shore, impart a peculiarly desolate effect to the
     grassy ruins, worn with the blasts of the German Ocean, gray
     with the storms of winter, and the damp mists of March and
     April--an effect that is greatly increased by the venerable
     aspect of the dark and old ecclesiastical city to the southward,
     decaying, deserted, isolated, and forgotten, with its
     magnificent cathedral, once one of the finest gothic structures
     in the world, but now, shattered by the hands of man and time,
     passing rapidly away. Of the grand spire which arose from the
     cross, and of its five lofty towers, little more than the
     foundations can now be traced, while a wilderness of ruins on
     every hand attest the departed splendours of St Andrews."

George Wishart, the unhappy preacher, was burned before the Castle
on the 28th March 1545, under circumstances of peculiar barbarity.
We refer to the book for a proper description of the death-scene of
the Martyr, whose sufferings were calmly witnessed by the ruthless
and implacable Cardinal. But the avenger of blood was at hand, in
the person of Norman Leslie, Master of Rothes. This young man,
who was of a most fiery and intractable spirit, had some personal
dispute with the cardinal, whom he accused of having attempted to
defraud him of an estate. High words followed, and Norman rode off
in wrath to the house of his uncle, John Leslie of Parkhill, a moody
and determined Reformer, who had already vowed bloody vengeance for
the execution of the unfortunate Wishart. Finding him apt for any
enterprise, Norman instantly despatched messengers to the Kirkaldys
of Grange, the Melvilles of Raith and Carnbee, and to Carmichael of
Kilmadie, desiring them to meet for an enterprise of great weight
and importance; and the summons having been responded to, these few
men determined to rid the country of one whom they considered a
murderer and an oppressor.

The manner in which this act of terrible retribution was executed
is too well known to the student of history to require repetition.
Suffice it to say that, by a _coup-de-main_, sixteen armed men made
themselves masters of the castle of St Andrews, overpowered and
dispersed the retainers of the cardinal, and quenched the existence
of that haughty prelate in his blood. William Kirkaldy was not the
slayer, but, as an accomplice, he must bear whatever load of odium
is cast upon the perpetrators of the deed. We cannot help thinking
that our author exhibits an unnecessary degree of horror in this
instance. Far be it from us to palliate bloodshed, in any age or
under any provocation: neither do we agree with John Knox, that the
extermination of Beatoun was a "godly fact." But we doubt whether it
can be called a murder. In the first place, old Kirkaldy knew, on
the authority of James V., that a list of three hundred and sixty
names, including his own and those of his most immediate friends,
had been made out by the cardinal, as a catalogue of victims who
were to be burned for heresy. This contemplated atrocity, far worse
than the massacre of St Bartholomew, might not, indeed, have been
carried into effect, even on account of its magnitude; but the
mere knowledge that it had been planned, was enough to justify the
Kirkaldys, and those marked out for impeachment, in considering
Beatoun as their mortal foe. That the cardinal never departed from
his bloody design, is apparent from the fact, that, after his death,
a paper was found in his repositories, ordaining that "Norman
Leslie, sheriff of Fife, John Leslie, father's brother to Norman,
the Lairds of Grange, _elder and younger_, Sir James Learmonth of
Dairsie, and the Laird of Raith, should either have been slain or
else taken." The law at that period could afford no security against
such a design, so that Beatoun's assassination may have been an act
of necessary self-defence, which it would be extremely difficult to
blame. As to the sacrilege, we cannot regard that as an aggravation.
If a prelate of the Roman Church, like Beatoun, chose to make
himself notorious to the world by the number and scandal of his
profligacies; if, with a carnality and disregard of appearances not
often exhibited by laymen, he turned his palace into a seraglio; and
if his mistress was actually surprised, at the time of the attack,
in the act of escaping from his bedchamber,--great allowance must
be made for the obtuseness of the men who could not understand the
relevancy of the plea of priesthood which he offered, in order that
his holy calling might shield him from secular consequences. But
further, is the fate of Wishart to go for nothing? Setting the
natural influences of bigotry aside, and with every consideration
for the zeal which could hurry even so good a man as Sir Thomas More
to express, in words at least, a desire to see the faggot and the
stake in full operation--what shall we say to the individual who
could calmly issue his infernal orders, and, in the full pomp of
ecclesiastical vanity, become a pleased spectator of the sufferings
of a human being, undergoing the most hideous of all imaginable
deaths? Truly this, that the brute deserved to die in return; and
that we, at all events, shall not stigmatise those who killed him as
guilty of murder. Poor old Sharpe was murdered, if ever man was, in
a hideous and atrocious manner; but as for Beatoun, he deserved to
die, and his death was invested with a sort of judicial sanction,
having been perpetrated in presence of the sheriff of the bounds.

The tidings of this act of vengeance spread, not only through
Scotland, but through Europe, like wildfire. According as men
differed in religious faith, they spoke of it either with horror or
exultation. Even the most moderate of the reforming party were slow
to blame the deed which freed them from a bloody persecutor; and Sir
David Lindesay of the Mount, the witty and satirical scholar, did
not characterise it more severely than as expressed in the following
verses:--

    "As for the cardinal, I grant
     He was the man we well might want;
         God will forgive it soon.
     But of a truth, the sooth to say,
     Although the loon be well away,
         The deed was _foully done_."

Meanwhile the conspirators had conceived the daring scheme of
holding the castle of St Andrews against all comers, and of setting
the authority of the regent at defiance. They calculated upon
receiving support from England, in case France thought fit to
interfere; and perhaps they imagined that a steady resistance on
their part might excite general insurrection in Scotland. Besides
this, they had retained in custody the son and heir of the Regent
Arran, whom they had found in the castle, and who was a valuable
hostage in their hands. The force they could command was not great.
Amongst others, John Knox joined them with his three pupils; several
Fife barons espoused their cause; and altogether they mustered
about one hundred and fifty armed men. This was a small body, but
the defences of the place were more than usually complete, and they
were well munimented with artillery. Accordingly, though formally
summoned, they peremptorily refused to surrender.

John Knox, when he entered the castle, was probably under the
impression that he was joining a company of men, serious in their
deportment, rigid in their conversation, and self-denying in their
habits. If so, he must very soon have discovered his mistake. The
young Reforming gentry were not one whit more scrupulous than
their Catholic coevals: Norman Leslie, though brave as steel, was
a thorough-paced desperado; and, from the account given by our
author of the doings at St Andrews, it may easily be understood how
uncongenial such quarters must have been to the stern and ascetic
Reformer.

Arran had probably no intention of pushing matters to extremity,
though compelled, for appearance' sake, to invest the fortress.
After a siege of three weeks it remained unreduced; and a pestilence
which broke out in the town of St Andrews, afforded the regent a
pretext for agreeing to an armistice. Hitherto the conspirators had
received the countenance and support of Henry VIII., who remitted
them large sums from time to time, and promised even more active
assistance. But this never arrived. Death at last put a stop to
the bereavements of this unconscionable widower; and thereupon the
French court despatched a fleet of one-and-twenty vessels of war,
under the command of Leon Strozzio--a famous Florentine noble,
who had risen in the Order of the Hospital to the rank of Prior
of Capua--for the purpose of reducing the stubborn stronghold of
heresy. Strozzio's name was so well known as that of a most skilful
commander and tactician, and the weight of the ordnance he brought
with him was so great, that the besieged had no hope of escaping
this time; yet, on being summoned, they replied, with the most
undaunted bravery, that they would defend the castle against the
united powers of Scotland, England, and France. With such resolute
characters as these, it was no use to parley further; and the Prior
accordingly set about his task with a dexterity which put to shame
the feeble tactics of Arran.

     "By sea and land the siege was pressed with great fury. From the
     ramparts of the Abbey Church, from the college, and other places
     in the adjoining streets, the French and Scottish cannoneers
     maintained a perpetual cannonade upon the castle. Those soldiers
     who manned the steeples and St Salvador's tower occupied such
     an elevation, that, by depressing their cannon, they shot down
     into the inner quadrangle of the castle, the pavement of which
     could be seen dabbled with the blood of the garrison; and, to
     aggravate the increasing distress of the latter, the pestilence
     found its way among them--many died, and all were dismayed.
     Walter Melville, one of their bravest leaders, fell deadly sick;
     while watching, warding, and scanty fare, were rapidly wearing
     out the rest; and John Knox dinned continually in their ears,
     that their present perils were the just reward of their former
     corrupt lives and licentiousness, and reliance on England rather
     than Heaven.

     "'For the first twenty days of this siege,' said he, 'ye
     prospered bravely: but when ye triumphed at your victory, I
     lamented, and ever said that ye saw not what I saw. When ye
     boasted of the thickness of your walls, I said they would be
     but as egg-shells: when ye vaunted, England will rescue us--I
     said, ye shall not see it; but ye shall be delivered into your
     enemies' hands, and carried afar off into a strange country.'

     "This gloomy prophesying was but cold comfort for those whom his
     precepts and exhortations had urged to rebellion, to outlawry,
     and to bloodshed; but their affairs were fast approaching a
     crisis."

If John Knox showed little judgment in adopting this tone of
vaticination, he is, at all events, entitled to some credit for his
courage--since Norman Leslie possessed a temper which it was rather
dangerous to aggravate, and must sometimes have been sorely tempted
to toss the querulous Reformer into the sea.

The garrison finally surrendered to Leon Strozzio, but not until
battlement and wall had been breached, and an escalade rendered
practicable.

The prisoners, including William Kirkaldy, were conveyed to France,
and there subjected to treatment which varied according to their
station. Those of knightly rank were incarcerated in separate
fortresses; the remainder were chained to oars in the galleys on
the Loire. John Knox was one of those who were forced to undergo
this ignominious punishment; and we quite agree with our author in
holding that, "it is not probable, that the lash of the tax-master
increased his goodwill towards popery."

William Kirkaldy was shut up in the great castle of Mont Saint
Michel, along with Norman Leslie, his uncle of Parkhill, and Peter
Carmichael of Kilmadie. But, however strong the fortress, it
was imprudent in their gaolers to lodge four such fiery spirits
together. They resolved to break prison; and did so, having, by an
ingenious ruse, succeeded in overpowering the garrison, and, after
some vicissitudes and wanderings, made good their escape to England.

After this event there is a blank of some years, during which we
hear little of Kirkaldy. It is, however, an important period in
northern history, for it includes the battle of Pinkie, the removal
of the child, Queen Mary, to France, and her betrothment to the
Dauphin. Kirkaldy seems not to have arrived in England until the
death of Edward VI., when the Romanist party attained a temporary
ascendency. We next find him in the service of Henry II. of France,
engaged in the wars between that monarch and the Emperor Charles V.
In these campaigns, says our author, by his bravery and conduct, he
soon attained that eminent distinction and reputation, as a skilful
and gallant soldier, which ceased only with his life.

Kirkaldy was not the only member of the stout garrison of St Andrews
who found employment in the French service. Singularly enough,
Norman Leslie, the head of the conspirators, had also a command, and
was in high favour with the famous Constable Anne de Montmorencie.
His death, which occurred the day before the battle of Renti, is
thus graphically recounted in the Memoirs, and is a picture worth
preserving:--

     "The day before the battle, the constable, perceiving by the
     manœuvres of the Spanish troops that Charles meant to take
     possession of certain heights, which sloped abruptly down to
     the camp or bivouac of the French, sent up Leslie's Scottish
     lances and other horsemen to skirmish with these Imperialists,
     and drive them back. Melville, his fellow-soldier, thus
     describes him:--In view of the whole French army, the Master
     of Rothes, 'with thirty Scotsmen, rode up the hill upon a fair
     gray gelding. He had, above his coat of black velvet, his coat
     of armour, with two broad white crosses, one before and the
     other behind, with sleeves of mail, and a red bonnet upon his
     head, whereby he was seen and known afar off by the constable,
     the Duke d'Enghien, and the Prince of Condé.' His party was
     diminished to seven by the time he came within lance-length of
     the Imperialists, who were sixty in number; but he burst upon
     them with the force of a thunderbolt, escaping the fire of their
     hand-culverins, which they discharged incessantly against him.
     He struck five from their saddles with his long lance, before it
     broke into splinters; then, drawing his sword, he rushed again
     and again among them, with the heedless bravery for which he had
     ever been distinguished. At the critical moment of this unequal
     contest, of seven Scottish knights against sixty Spaniards, a
     troop of Imperial spearmen were hastily riding along the hill to
     join in the encounter. By this time Leslie had received several
     bullets in his person; and, finding himself unable to continue
     the conflict longer, he dashed spurs into his horse, galloped
     back to the constable, and fell, faint and exhausted, from his
     saddle, with the blood pouring through his burnished armour on
     the turf.

     "By the king's desire he was immediately borne to the royal
     tent, where the Duke d'Enghien and Prince Louis of Condé
     remarked to Henry, that 'Hector of Troy had not behaved more
     valiantly than Norman Leslie.'

     "So highly did that brave prince value Norman Leslie, and so
     greatly did he deplore his death, that all the survivors of his
     Scottish troop of lances were, under Crichton of Brunstane,
     sent back to their own country, laden with rewards and honours;
     and, by his influence, such as were exiles were restored by the
     regent to their estates and possessions, as a recompense for
     their valour on the frontiers of Flanders."

Kirkaldy seems to have remained in France until the unfortunate
death of Henry II., who was accidentally killed in a tournament.
The estimation in which he was held, after his achievements in the
wars of Picardy, may be learned from the following contemporary
testimony:--

"I heard Henry II.," Melville states, "point unto him and
say--'Yonder is one of the most valiant men of our age.'" And the
same writer mentions "that the proud old Montmorencie, the great
constable of France, treated the exiled Kirkaldy with such deference
that he never addressed him with his head covered." This was high
tribute, when paid to a soldier then under thirty years of age.

Ten years after he had been conveyed a prisoner from St Andrews on
board the French galley, Kirkaldy returned to Scotland, but not to
repose under the laurels he had already won. Soon after this we find
him married, in possession, through the death of his father, of his
ancestral estates, the intimate friend of Maitland of Lethington and
of Lord James, afterwards the Regent Moray, and a stanch supporter
of the Lords of the Congregation. This period furnishes to us one
of the most melancholy chapters of Scottish history. Mary of Guise,
the queen-regent, on the one hand, was resolute to put down the
growing heresy; on the other, the landed nobility were determined to
overthrow the Catholic church. Knox, who had by this time returned
from France, and other Reformed preachers, did their utmost to fan
the flame; and the result was that melancholy work of incendiarism
and ruin, which men of all parties must bitterly deplore. Then came
the French auxiliaries under D'Oisel, wasting the land, ravaging the
estates of the Protestants, and burning their houses and villages;
a savage mode of warfare, from which Kirkaldy suffered much--Fife
having been pillaged from one end to the other--but for which he
exacted an ample vengeance. The details of this partisan warfare are
given with much minuteness, but great spirit, by the chronicler; and
it did not cease until the death of Mary of Guise.

A new victim was now to be offered to the distempered spirit of the
age: on the 19th August 1561, the young Queen Mary arrived at Leith.
She was then in the nineteenth year of her age, and endowed with
all that surpassing loveliness which was at once her dower and her
misfortune. Her arrival was dreaded by the preachers, who detested
the school in which she had been educated, and the influence she
might be enabled to exercise; but the great mass of the people
hailed her coming with acclamations of unfeigned delight:--

     "Despite the efforts of these dark-browed Reformers, agitated
     by the memory of her good and gallant father,--the king of
     the poor--by that of her thirteen years' absence from them,
     and stirred by that inborn spirit of loyalty which the Scots
     possessed in so intense a degree, the people received their
     beautiful queen with the utmost enthusiasm, and outvied each
     other in her praise.

     "Her mother's dying advice to secure the support of the
     Protestants, and to cultivate the friendship of their leaders,
     particularly Maitland of Lethington and 'Kirkaldy of Grange,
     whom the Constable de Montmorencie had named the first soldier
     in Europe,' had been faithfully conveyed to Mary in France by
     the handsome young Count de Martigues, the Sieur de la Brosse,
     the Bishop of Amiens, and others, who had witnessed the last
     moments of that dearly-loved mother in the castle of Edinburgh;
     and Mary treasured that advice in her heart--but it availed her
     not."

Hurried on by her evil destiny, and persecuted by intrigues which
had their origin in the fertile brain of Elizabeth, Mary determined
to bestow her hand upon Darnley, a weak, dissolute, and foolish
boy, whose only recommendations were his birth and his personal
beauty. Such a marriage never could, under any circumstances, have
proved a happy one. At that juncture it was peculiarly unfortunate,
as it roused the jealousy of the house of Hamilton against that
of Lennox; and was further bitterly opposed by Moray, a cold,
calculating, selfish man, who concealed, under an appearance of
zeal for the Protestant faith, the most restless, unnatural, and
insatiable ambition. Talents he did possess, and of no ordinary
kind: above all, he was gifted with the faculty of imposing upon men
more open and honourable than himself. Knox was a mere tool in his
hands: Kirkaldy of Grange regarded him as a pattern of wisdom. For
years, this straightforward soldier surrendered his judgment to the
hypocrite, and, unfortunately, did not detect his mistake until the
Queen was involved in a mesh from which extrication was impossible.
Moray's first attempt at rebellion proved an arrant failure: the
people refused to join his standard, and he, with the other leading
insurgents, was compelled to seek refuge in England.

All might have gone well but for the folly of the idiot Darnley.
No long period of domestic intercourse was requisite to convince
the unfortunate Queen that she had thrown away her affections,
and bestowed her hand upon an individual totally incapable of
appreciating the one, and utterly unworthy of the other. Darnley
was a low-minded, fickle, and imperious fool--vicious as a colt,
capricious as a monkey, and stubborn as an Andalusian mule. Instead
of showing the slightest gratitude to his wife and mistress, for
the preference which had raised him from obscurity to a position
for which kings were suitors, he repaid the vast boon by a series
of petty and unmanly persecutions. He aimed to be not only
prince-consort, but master; and because this was denied him, he
threw himself precipitately into the counsels of the enemies of
Mary. It was not difficult to sow the seeds of jealousy in a mind so
well prepared to receive them; and Riccio, the Italian secretary,
was marked out by Ruthven and Morton, the secret adherents of
Moray, as the victim. Even this scheme, though backed by Darnley,
might have miscarried, had not Mary been driven into an act which
roused, while it almost justified, the worst fears of the Protestant
party in Scotland. This was her adhesion to the celebrated Roman
Catholic League, arising from a coalition which had been concluded
between France, Spain, and the Emperor, for the destruction of
the Protestant cause in Europe. "It was," says Tytler, "a design
worthy of the dark and unscrupulous politicians by whom it had been
planned--Catherine of Medicis and the Duke of Alva. In the summer
of the preceding year, the queen-dowager of France and Alva had met
at Bayonne, during a progress in which she conducted her youthful
son and sovereign, Charles IX., through the southern provinces of
his kingdom; and there, whilst the court was dissolved in pleasure,
those secret conferences were held which issued in the resolution
that toleration must be at an end, and that the only safety for
the Roman Catholic faith was the extermination of its enemies." To
this document, Mary, at the instigation of Riccio, who was in the
interest of Rome, and who really possessed considerable influence
with his mistress, affixed her signature. The bond was abortive for
its ostensible purposes, but it was the death-warrant of the Italian
secretary, and ultimately of the Queen.

It is not our province to usurp the functions of the historian, and
therefore we pass willingly over that intricate portion of history
which ends with the murder of Darnley. It was notoriously the
work of Bothwell, but not his alone, for Lethington, Huntly, and
Argyle, were also deeply implicated. Bothwell now stands forward
as a prominent character of the age. He was a bold, reckless,
desperate adventurer, with little to recommend him save personal
daring, and a fidelity to his mistress which hitherto had remained
unshaken. Lethington, in all probability, merely regarded him as an
instrument, but Bothwell had a higher aim. With daring ambition, he
aimed at the possession of the person of Mary, and actually achieved
his purpose.

This unhappy and most unequal union roused the ire of the Scottish
nobles. Even such of them as, intimidated by the reckless character
of Bothwell, had sworn to defend him if impeached for the slaughter,
and had recommended him as a fitting match for Mary, now took
up arms, under the pretext that he had violently abducted their
sovereign. We fear it cannot be asserted with truth that much
violence was used. Poor Queen Mary had found, by bitter experience,
that she could hardly depend upon one of her principal subjects.
Darnley, Moray, Morton, Lethington, and Arran, each had betrayed
her in turn; everywhere her steps were surrounded by a net of the
blackest treachery: not one true heart seemed left to beat with
loyalty for its Queen. Elizabeth, with fiendish malice, was goading
on her subjects to rebellion. The Queen of England had determined to
ruin the power of her sister monarch; the elderly withered spinster
detested the young and blooming mother. Why, then, should it be
matter of great marvel to those who know the acuteness of female
sensibility, if, in the hour of desertion and desolation, Mary
should have allowed the weakness of the woman to overcome the pride
of the sovereign, and should have opposed but feeble resistance to
the advances of the only man who hitherto had remained stanch to her
cause, and whose arm seemed strong enough to insure her personal
protection? It is not the first time that a daring villain has been
taken for a hero by a distressed and persecuted woman.

But Bothwell had no friends. The whole of the nobles were against
him; and the Commons, studiously taught to believe that Mary was a
consenting party to Darnley's death, were hostile to their Queen.
Kirkaldy, at the instance of Moray, came over from his patrimonial
estates to join the confederates, and his first feat in arms was
an attack on Borthwick Castle, from which Bothwell and the Queen
escaped with the utmost difficulty. Then came the action, if such
it can be called, of Carberry Hill, when Bothwell challenged his
accusers to single combat--a defiance which was accepted by Lord
Lindesay of the Byres, but prevented from being brought to the test
of combat by the voluntary submission of the Queen. Seeing that her
forces were utterly inadequate to oppose those of the assembled
nobles, she sent for Sir William Kirkaldy of Grange, as a knight
in whose honour she could thoroughly confide, and, after a long
interview, agreed to pass over to the troops of the confederates,
provided they would again acknowledge and obey her as their
sovereign. This being promised, she took her last leave of Bothwell,
and her first step on the road which ultimately brought her to
Lochleven.

We must refer our readers to the volume for the spirited account
of these events, and of the expedition undertaken by Kirkaldy in
pursuit of Bothwell, his narrow escapes, and sea-fights among the
shores of Shetland, and the capture of the fugitive's vessel on the
coast of Norway. Neither will our space permit us to dwell upon the
particulars of the battle of Langside, that last action hazarded
and lost by the adherents of Queen Mary, just after her escape from
Lochleven, and before she quitted the Scottish soil for ever. But
for the tactics of Kirkaldy, the issue of that fight might have been
different; and deeply is it to be regretted that, before that time,
the eyes of the Knight of Grange had not been opened to the perfidy
of Moray, whom he loved too trustingly, and served far too well. It
was only after Mary was in the power of Elizabeth that he knew how
much she had been betrayed.

Under the regency of Moray, Kirkaldy held the post of governor of
the castle of Edinburgh, and retained it until the fortress went
down before the battery of the English cannon.

He was also elected Lord Provost of Edinburgh--a dignity which,
before that time, had been held by the highest nobles of the
land, but which has since deteriorated under the influence of the
Union, and bungled acts of corporation. He was in this position
when he seems first to have perceived that the queen had been made
the victim of a deep-laid plot of treachery--that Moray was the
arch-conspirator--and that he, along with other men, who wished
well both to their country and their sovereign, had been used as
instruments for his own advancement by the false and unscrupulous
statesman. The arrest of Chatelherault and of Lord Herries, both of
them declared partisans of Mary, and their committal to the castle
of Edinburgh, a measure against which Kirkaldy remonstrated, was the
earliest act which aroused his suspicions:--

     "Upon this, Mr John Wood, a pious friend of the regent's,
     observed to Kirkaldy, in the true spirit of his party,--

     "'I marvel, sir, that you are offended at these two being
     committed to ward; for how shall _we_, who are the defenders of
     my lord regent, get rewards but by the ruin of such men?'

     "'Ha!' rejoined Kirkaldy sternly, 'is that your holiness? I see
     naught among ye but envy, greed, and ambition, whereby ye will
     wreck a good regent and ruin the realm!'--a retort which made
     him many enemies among the train of Moray."

But another event, which occurred soon afterwards, left no doubt in
the mind of Kirkaldy as to the nature of Moray's policy. Maitland of
Lethington, unquestionably the ablest Scottish diplomatist of his
time, but unstable and shifting, as diplomatists often are, had seen
cause to adopt very different views from those which he formerly
professed. Whilst Mary was in power, he had too often thrown the
weight of his influence and council against her: no sooner was
she a fugitive and prisoner, than his loyalty appeared to revive.
It is impossible now to say whether he was touched with remorse;
whether, on reflection, he became convinced that he had not acted
the part of a patriotic Scotsman; or whether he was merely led,
through excitement, to launch himself into a new sea of political
intrigue. This, at least, is certain, that he applied himself, heart
and soul, to baffle the machinations of Elizabeth, and to deliver
the unhappy Mary from the toils in which she was involved. It was
Lethington who conceived the project of restoring Mary to liberty,
by bringing about a marriage between her and the Duke of Norfolk;
and the knowledge of his zeal on that occasion incensed Elizabeth
to the utmost. That vindictive queen, who had always found Moray
most ready to obey her wishes, opened a negotiation with him for
the destruction of his former friend; and the regent, not daring to
thwart her, took measures to have Maitland charged, through a third
party, of direct participation in the death of Darnley, whereupon
his arrest followed.

Kirkaldy, who loved Maitland, would not allow this manœuvre to
pass unnoticed. He remonstrated with the regent for taking such a
step; but Moray coldly informed him, that it was out of his power to
save Lethington from prison. The blunt soldier, on receiving this
reply, sent back a message, demanding that the same charge should
be preferred against the Earl of Morton and Archibald Douglas; and
he did more--for, Maitland having been detained a prisoner in the
town of Edinburgh, under custody of Lord Home, Kirkaldy despatched
at night a party of the garrison, and, by means of a counterfeited
order, got possession of the statesman's person, and brought him to
the castle, where Chatelherault and Herries were already residing
as guests. Next morning, to the consternation of Moray, a trumpeter
appeared at the cross, demanding, in name of Kirkaldy, that process
for regicide should instantly be commenced against Morton and
Douglas; and, says our author,--

     "Remembering the precepts of the stout old knight his father,
     who always offered 'the single combate' in maintenance of his
     assertions, he offered himself, body for body, to fight Douglas
     on foot or horseback; while his prisoner, the Lord Herries,
     sent, as a peer of the realm, a similar cartel to the Earl of
     Morton. The challenges bore, 'that they were in the council, and
     consequently art and part in the king's murder.'

In vain did Moray try to wheedle Kirkaldy from his stronghold--in
vain did the revengeful Morton lay plots and bribe assassins. The
castle of Edinburgh had become the rallying point for those who
loved their queen. An attempt was made to oust Kirkaldy from the
provostship; but the stout burghers, proud of their martial head,
turned a deaf ear to the insidious suggestions of the regent. Yet
still the banner of King James floated upon the walls of the castle,
nor was the authority of Mary again proclaimed by sound of trumpet
until after the shot of the injured Bothwellhaugh struck down the
false and dangerous Moray in the street of Linlithgow. Then the
whole faction of Chatelherault, the whole race of Hamilton, rose in
arms, and prepared to place themselves under the guidance of Sir
William Kirkaldy. The following is, we think, a noble trait in the
character of the man:--

     "The latter mourned deeply the untimely fate of Moray: they
     had been old comrades in the field, stanch friends in many a
     rough political broil; and though they had quarrelled of late,
     he had too much of the frankness of his profession to maintain
     hostility to the dead, and so came to see him laid in his last
     resting-place. Eight lords bore the body up St Anthony's lofty
     aisle, in the great cathedral of St Giles; Kirkaldy preceded it,
     bearing the paternal banner of Moray with the royal arms; the
     Laird of Cleish, who bore the coat of armour, walked beside him.
     Knox prayed solemnly and earnestly as the body was lowered into
     the dust; a splendid tomb was erected over his remains, and long
     marked the spot where they lay."

Lennox succeeded Moray as regent of Scotland, but no salute
from the guns of the grim old fortress of Edinburgh greeted his
inauguration. Henceforward Kirkaldy had no common cause with
the confederates. Maitland had revealed to him the whole hidden
machinery of treason, the scandalous complexity of intrigues, by
which he had been made a dupe. He now saw that neither religion nor
patriotism, but simply selfishness and ambition, had actuated the
nobles in rebelling against their lawful sovereign, and that those
very acts which they fixed upon as apologies for their treason,
were in fact the direct consequences of their own deliberate guilt.
If any further corroboration of their baseness had been required
in order to satisfy the mind of Kirkaldy, it was afforded by
Morton, who, notwithstanding the defiance so lately hurled at him
from the castle, solicited, with a meanness and audacity almost
incredible, the assistance of the governor to drive Lennox out of
the kingdom, and procure his own acknowledgement as regent instead.
It is needless to say that his application was refused with scorn.
Kirkaldy now began to doubt the sincerity of Knox, who, although
with no selfish motive, had been deeply implicated in the cruel
plots of the time; some sharp correspondence took place, and the
veteran Reformer was pleased to denounce his former pupil from the
pulpit.

Edinburgh now was made to suffer the inconveniences to which every
city threatened with a siege is exposed. The burghers began to
grumble against their provost, who, on one occasion, sent a party to
rescue a prisoner from the Tolbooth, and who always preferred the
character of military governor to that of civic magistrate. Knox
thundered at him every Sabbath, and doubtless contributed largely
to increase the differences between him and the uneasy citizens.
The later might well be pardoned for their apprehensions. Not only
were they commanded by the castle guns, but Kirkaldy, as if to show
them what they might expect in ease of difference of political
sentiment,--

     "Hoisted cannon to the summit of St Giles's lofty spire, which
     rises in the middle of the central hill on which the city
     stands, and commands a view of it in every direction. He placed
     the artillery on the stone bartizan beneath the flying arches
     of the imperial crown that surmounts the tower, and thus turned
     the cathedral into a garrison, to the great annoyance of Knox
     and the citizens. The latter were also compelled, at their own
     expense, to maintain the hundred harquebussiers of Captain
     Melville, who were billeted in the Castlehill Street, for the
     queen's service; and thus, amid preparations for war, closed the
     year 1570."

We may fairly suppose, that the cannon of the governor were more
obnoxious than a modern annuity-tax can possibly be; yet no citizen
seemed desirous of coming forward as a candidate for the crown of
martyrdom. The bailies very quietly and very properly succumbed to
the provost.

It must be acknowledged that Edinburgh was, in those days, no
pleasant place of residence.

Next, to the alarm of the citizens, came a mock fight and the roar
of cannon, intended to accustom the garrison to siege and war,
which latter calamity speedily commenced in earnest. No possible
precaution was omitted by Kirkaldy, whose situation was eminently
critical; and he had received a terrible warning. On the last day
of truce, the strong castle of Dumbarton was taken by surprise by
a party under Captain Crawford of Jordanhill. Lord Fleming was
fortunate enough to effect his escape, but Hamilton, archbishop of
St Andrews, was made prisoner, and immediately hanged by Lennox over
Stirling bridge. An archbishopric never was a comfortable tenure in
Scotland.

Lennox and Morton now drew together. The former from Linlithgow, and
the latter from Dalkeith, advanced against the city, then occupied
by the Hamiltons: skirmishes went on under the walls and on the
Boroughmuir, and the unfortunate citizens were nearly driven to
distraction. The following dispositions of Provost Kirkaldy were by
no means calculated to restore a feeling of confidence, or to better
the prospects of trade:--

     "He loop-holed the spacious vaults of the great cathedral, for
     the purpose of sweeping with musketry its steep church-yard to
     the south, the broad Lawnmarket to the west, and High Street to
     the eastward; while his cannon from the spire commanded the long
     line of street called the Canongate--even to the battlements of
     the palace porch. He seized the ports of the city, placed guards
     of his soldiers upon them, and retained the keys in his own
     hands. He ordered a rampart and ditch to be formed at the Butter
     Tron, for the additional defence of the castle; and another
     for the same purpose at the head of the West Bow, a steep and
     winding street of most picturesque aspect. His soldiers pillaged
     the house of the regent, whose movables and valuables they
     carried off; he broke into the Tolbooth and council-chamber,
     drove forth the scribes and councillors, and finally deposed
     the whole bench of magistrates, installing in the civic chair
     the daring chief of Fermhirst, (who had now become the husband
     of his daughter Janet, a young girl barely sixteen;) while a
     council composed of his mosstrooping vassals, clad in their iron
     jacks, steel caps, calivers, and two-handed whingers, officiated
     as bailies, in lieu of the douce, paunchy, and well-fed
     burgesses of the Craims and Luckenbooths."

The Blue Blanket of Edinburgh--that banner which, according to
tradition, waved victoriously on the ramparts of Acre--had fallen
into singular custody! John Knox again fled, for in truth his life
was in danger. Kirkaldy, notwithstanding their differences, exerted
his authority to the utmost to protect him, but the Hamiltons
detested his very name; and one night a bullet fired through his
window, was taken as a significant hint that his absence from the
metropolis would be convenient. Scandal, even in those times, was
rife in Edinburgh; for we are told that--

     "John Low, a carrier of letters to St Andrews, being in the
     'Castell of Edinburgh, the Ladie Home would neids threip in his
     face, that Johne Knox was banist the toune, because in his yard
     he had raisit some _sanctis_, amangis whome their came up the
     devill with hornes, which when his servant Richart saw he ran
     wud, and so deid.'"

It is hardly credible, but it is a fact, that a meeting of the
Estates of Scotland, called by Lennox, was held in Edinburgh at
this very juncture. Kirkaldy occupied the upper part of the town,
whilst the lower was in the hands of the regent, protected, or
rather covered, by a battery which Morton had erected upon the
"Doo Craig," that bluff black precipice to the south of the Calton
Hill. The meeting, however, was a short one. "Mons Meg" and her
marrows belched forth fire and shot upon the town, and the scared
representatives fled, in terror of the falling ruins. A sortie from
the castle was made, and the place of assembly burned.

Kirkaldy now summoned and actually held a parliament, in name of
Queen Mary, in Edinburgh. The possession of the Regalia gave this
assembly a show of legality at least equivalent to that pertaining
to its rival, the _Black Parliament_, which was then sitting at
Stirling.

We must refer to the work itself for the details of the martial
exploits which followed. So very vividly and picturesquely are the
scenes described, that, in reading of them, the images arise to
our mind with that distinctness which constitutes the principal
charm of the splendid romances of Scott. We accompany, with the
deepest personal interest, the gallant Captain Melville and his
harquebussiers, on his expedition to dislodge grim Morton from
his Lion's Den at Dalkeith--we follow fiery Claud Hamilton in his
attack upon the Black Parliament at Stirling, when Lennox met his
death, and Morton, driven by the flames from his burning mansion,
surrendered his sword to Buccleugh--and, amidst the din and uproar
of the Douglas wars, we hear the cannon on the bastion of Edinburgh
castle battering to ruin the gray towers of Merchiston.

The career of Kirkaldy was rapidly drawing towards its close.
During the life of Mar, who succeeded Lennox in the regency, the
brave governor succeeded in maintaining possession not only of the
castle, but of the city of Edinburgh, in spite of all opposition.
But Morton, the next regent, was a still more formidable foe. The
hatred between this man and Kirkaldy was mutual, and it was of the
most deadly kind. And no wonder. Morton, as profligate as cruel, had
seduced the fair and false Helen Leslie, wife of Sir James Kirkaldy,
the gallant brother of the governor, and thereby inflicted the
worst wound on the honour of an ancient family. A more awful story
than the betrayal of her husband, and the seizure of his castle of
Blackness, through the treachery of this wretched woman, is not to
be found in modern history. Tarpeia alone is her rival in infamy,
and the end of both was the same. The virulence of hereditary feud
is a marked feature in our Scottish annals; but no sentiment of the
kind could have kindled such a flame of enmity as burned between
Morton and Kirkaldy. From the hour when the former obtained the
regency, the war became one of extermination.

Morton, it must be owned, showed much diplomatic skill in his
arrangements. His first step was to negotiate separately with the
country party of the loyalists, so as to detach them from Kirkaldy;
and in this he perfectly succeeded. The leading nobles, Huntley
and Argyle, were wearied with the war; Chatelherault, whom we have
already known as Arran, was broken down by age and infirmities; and
even those who had been the keenest partisans of the queen, Herries
and Seton, were not disinclined to transfer their allegiance to
her son. The treaty of Perth left Kirkaldy with no other adherents
save Lord Home, the Melvilles, Maitland, and his garrison. The city
had revolted, and was now under the provostship of fierce old Lord
Lindesay of the Byres, who was determined to humble his predecessor.
Save the castle rock of Edinburgh, and the hardy band that held it,
all Scotland had submitted to Morton.

Killigrew, the English ambassador, advised him to yield. "No!"
replied Kirkaldy. "Though my friends have forsaken me, and the city
of Edinburgh hath done so too, yet I will defend this castle to the
last!" The man whom Moray thought a tool, had expanded to the bulk
of a hero.

Meantime, English engineers were occupied in estimating the
capabilities of the castle as a place of defence. They reported
that, with sufficient artillery, it might be reduced in twenty days;
and, accordingly, Morton determined to besiege it so soon as the
period of truce agreed on by the treaty of Perth should expire.
Kirkaldy was not less resolute to maintain it.

At six o'clock, on the morning of 1st January 1573, a warning gun
from the castle announced that the treaty had expired, and the
standard of the Queen was unfurled on the highest tower, amidst the
acclamations of the garrison. Four-and-twenty hours previously,
Kirkaldy had issued a proclamation, warning all loyal subjects of
the Queen to depart forthwith from the city; and terrible indeed was
the situation of those who neglected that seasonable warning. Morton
began the attack; and it was answered by an incessant discharge from
the batteries upon the town.

Civil war had assumed its worst form. By day the cannon thundered;
at night the garrison made sorties, and fired the city: all was
wrack and ruin. Morton, bursting with fury, found that, unassisted,
he could not conquer Grange.

English aid was asked from, and given by, the unscrupulous
Elizabeth. Drury, who had helped Morton in his dishonourable treason
at Restalrig, marched into Scotland with the English standard
displayed, bringing with him fifteen hundred harquebussiers, one
hundred and fifty pikemen, and a numerous troop of gentlemen
volunteers; while the train of cannon and baggage came round by sea
to Leith, where a fleet of English ships cruised, to cut off all
succour from the Continent.

The English summons to surrender was treated by Kirkaldy with scorn.
Up went a scarlet banner, significant of death and defiance, on
the great tower of King David. Indomitable, as in the days of his
early youth, when the confederates of St Andrews defied the universe
in arms, the Scottish champion looked calmly from his rock on the
preparations for the terrible assault.

Five batteries were erected around the castle, but not with
impunity. The cannon of Kirkaldy mowed down the pioneers when
engaged in their trenching operations; and it was not until Trinity
Sunday, the 17th of May, that the besiegers opened their fire.

     "At two o'clock in the afternoon, the five batteries opened a
     simultaneous discharge upon the walls of the castle. Bravely
     and briskly its cannoneers replied to them, and deep-mouthed
     Mons Meg, with her vast bullets of black whin, the thundering
     carthouns, basilisks, serpents, and culverins, amid fire
     and smoke, belched their missiles from the old gray towers,
     showering balls of iron, lead, and stone at the batteries;
     while the incessant ringing of several thousand harquebusses,
     calivers, and wheel-lock petronels, added to the din of the
     double cannonade. From the calibre of the great Mons Meg, which
     yet frowns _en barbe_ over the ramparts, one may easily imagine
     the dismay her enormous bullets must have caused in the trenches
     so far below her.

     "For ten days the furious cannonade continued, on both sides,
     without a moment's cessation. On the 19th, three towers were
     demolished, and enormous gaps appeared in the curtain walls;
     many of the castle guns were dismounted, and destroyed by the
     falling of the ancient masonry: a shot struck one of the largest
     culverins fairly on the muzzle, shattering it to pieces, and
     scattering the splinters around those who stood near. A very
     heavy battery was discharged against King David's Tower, a great
     square bastel-house, the walls of which were dark with the lapse
     of four centuries. On the 23d, a great gap had been beaten in
     its northern side, revealing the arched hall within; and as the
     vast old tower, with its cannon, its steel-clad defenders, and
     the red flag of defiance still waving above its machicolated
     bartizan, sank with a mighty crash to shapeless ruin, the wild
     shriek raised by the females in the castle, and the roar of the
     masonry rolling like thunder down the perpendicular rocks, were
     distinctly heard at the distant English camp."

One hundred and fifty men constituted the whole force which Kirkaldy
could muster when he commenced his desperate defence. Ten times
that number would scarcely have sufficed to maintain an adequate
resistance; but high heroic valour in the face of death is
insensible to any odds. After a vigorous resistance, the besiegers
succeeded in gaining possession of the Spur or blockhouse--an outer
work which was constructed between the fortress and the town; but an
attempt to scale the rock on the west side utterly failed.

The blockade had for some time been so strict, that the garrison
began to suffer from want of provisions; but their sorest privation
was the loss of water. Although there are large and deep wells in
the Castle of Edinburgh, a remarkable peculiarity renders them
useless in the time of siege. To this day, whenever the cannon are
fired, the water deserts the wells, oozing out of some fissures at
the bottom of the rock. There is, however, a lower spring on the
north side, called St Margaret's Well, and from this the garrison
for a time obtained a scanty supply. Under cloud of night a soldier
was let down by a rope from the fortifications, and in this manner
the wholesome element was drawn. This circumstance became known to
the besiegers; and they, with diabolical cruelty, had recourse to
the expedient of poisoning the well, and permitted the nocturnal
visitor to draw the deadly liquid without molestation. The
consequences, of course, were fearful. Many expired in great agony;
and those whose strength enabled them to throw off the more active
effects of the poison, were so enfeebled that they could hardly work
the heavy cannon, or support the fatigue of watching day and night
upon the battlements.

     "Maddened by the miseries they underwent, and rendered desperate
     by all hopes of escape from torture and death being utterly cut
     off, a frenzy seized the soldiers; they broke into a dangerous
     mutiny, and threatened to hang Lethington over the walls, as
     being the primary cause of all these dangers, from the great
     influence he exercised over Kirkaldy, their governor. But
     even now, when amid the sick, the dying, and the dead, and
     the mutinous--surrounded by crumbling ramparts and dismounted
     cannon, among which the shot of the besiegers were rebounding
     every instant--with the lives, honour, and safety of his wife,
     his brother, and numerous brave and faithful friends depending
     on his efforts and example, the heart of the brave governor
     appears never to have quailed even for an instant!"

At length, as further resistance was useless, and as certain
movements on the part of the enemy indicated their intention of
proceeding to storm the castle by the breach which had been effected
on the eastern side, Kirkaldy requested an interview with his old
fellow-soldier Drury, the Marshal of Berwick. This being acceded to,
the governor and his uncle, "Sir Robert Melville of Murdocairnie,
were lowered over the ruins by cords, as there was no other mode
of egress, the flight of forty steps being completely buried in
the same ruin which had choked up the archways, and hidden both
gates and portcullis. The Castlehill, at that time, says Melville
of Kilrenny, in his Diary, was covered with stones, 'rinning like a
sandie bray;' but behind the breaches were the men-at-arms drawn up
in firm array, with their pikes and helmets gleaming in the setting
sun."

Kirkaldy's requests were not unreasonable. He asked to have security
for the lives and property of those in the garrison, to have leave
for Lord Home and Maitland of Lethington to retire to England, and,
for himself, permission to live unmolested at the estate in Fife.
Drury might have consented, but Morton was obdurate. The thought of
having his enemy unconditionally in his hands, and the prospect of
a revenge delicious to his savage and unrelenting nature, made him
deaf to all applications; and the only terms he would grant were
these,--

     "That if the soldiers marched forth without their armour, and
     submitted to his clemency, he would grant them their lives; but
     there were ten persons who must yield _unconditionally_ to him,
     and whose fate he would leave to the decision of their umpire,
     Elizabeth. The unfortunate exceptions were--the governor, Sir
     James Kirkaldy, Lethington, Alexander Lord Home, the Bishop
     of Dunkeld, Sir Robert Melville of Murdocairnie, Logan of
     Restalrig, Alexander Crichton of Drylaw, Pitarrow the constable,
     and Patrick Wishart.

Kirkaldy returned to the castle, resolved to die in the breach, but
by this time the mutiny had begun. The soldiers insisted upon a
surrender even more clamorously than before, and several of them
took the opportunity of clambering over the ruins and deserting. It
would have been madness under such circumstances to hold out; yet
still Kirkaldy, jealous of his country's honour, could not brook the
idea of handing over the citadel of Scotland's metropolis to the
English.

     "Therefore, when compelled to adopt the expedient (which is
     supposed to have originated in Lethington's fertile brain) of
     admitting a party of the besiegers within the outworks, or
     at least close to the walls, he sent privately in the night
     a message to Hume and Jordanhill, to march their Scottish
     companies between the English batteries and the fortress, lest
     the old bands of Drury should have the honour of entering first."

Next morning he came forth, and surrendered his sword to Drury, who
gave him the most solemn assurances that he should be restored to
his estates and liberty at the intercession of the Queen of England,
and that all his adherents should be pardoned.

Drury, probably, was in earnest, but he had either overstepped his
commission, or misinterpreted the mind of his mistress. Morton had
most basely handed over to Elizabeth the person of the fugitive Earl
of Northumberland, whom she hurried to the block, nor could she well
refuse to the Scottish regent a similar favour in return. Morton
asked for the disposal of the prisoners, and the gift was readily
granted.

Three of them were to die: for these there was no mercy. One,
William, Maitland of Lethington, disappointed the executioner by
swallowing poison, a draught more potent than that drawn from the
well of St. Margaret. The vengeance of Morton long kept his body
from the decencies of the grave. Of the two Kirkaldys, one was
the rival of the regent, who had foully wronged the other, and,
therefore, their doom was sealed.

One hundred barons and gentlemen of rank and fortune, kinsmen to
the gallant Kirkaldy, offered, in exchange for his life, to bind
themselves by bond of manrent, as vassals to the house of Morton
for ever: money, jewels, lands, were tendered to the regent; but
all in vain. Nothing could induce him to depart from his revenge.
Nor were others wanting to urge on the execution. The Reformed
preachers, remembering the dying message of Knox, were clamorous for
the realisation of the prophecy through his death; the burghers, who
had suffered so much from his obstinate defence, shouted for his
execution; only stout old Lord Lindesay, fierce as he was, had the
magnanimity to plead on behalf of the unfortunate soldier.

Then came the scaffold and the doom. Those who are conversant
with Scottish history cannot but be impressed with the remarkable
resemblance between the last closing scene of Kirkaldy, as related
in this work, and that of Montrose, which was exhibited on the same
spot, in another and a later age.

So died this remarkable man, the last of Queen Mary's adherents. If,
in the course of his career, we can trace out some inconsistencies,
it is but fair to his memory to reflect how early he was thrown upon
the troubled ocean of politics, and how difficult it must have been,
in such an age of conflicting opinions and desperate intrigue, to
maintain a tangible principle. Kirkaldy seems to have selected Moray
as his guide--not penetrating certainly, at the time, the selfish
disposition of the man. But the instant he perceived that his own
aggrandisement, and not the welfare of Scotland, was the object of
the designing Earl, Grange drew off from his side, and valorously
upheld the cause of his injured and exiled sovereign.

We now take leave of a work which, we are convinced, will prove of
deep and thrilling interest to every Scotsman. It is seldom indeed
that we find history so written--in a style at once vigorous,
perspicuous, and picturesque. The author's heart is thoroughly with
his subject; and he exhibits, ever and anon, flashes of the old
Scottish spirit, which we are glad to believe has not decayed from
the land.


_Printed by William Blackwood and Sons, Edinburgh._

       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's note:

Minor typographical errors have been corrected without note.
Irregularities and inconsistencies in the text have been retained as
printed.

Mismatched quotes are not fixed if it's not sufficiently clear where
the missing quote should be placed.

The cover for the eBook version of this book was created by the
transcriber and is placed in the public domain.

The transcriber has supplied footnote anchors for the following
footnotes:

Page 20: Footnote 10 _A Campaign in the Kabylie._ By DAWSON BORRER,
F.R.G.S., &c. London, 1848.

Page 47: Footnote 15 _Expedition zur Entdeckung der Quellen des
Weissen Nil_, (1840-1841,) von FERDINAND WERNE. Mit einem Vorwort
von CARL RITTER. Berlin, 1848. _La Kabylie._ Par un Colon. Paris,
1846.

_La Captivité du Trompette Escoffier._ Par ERNEST ALBY. 2 vols.
Brussels, 1848."

Page 63: Footnote 16 _Annals of the Artists of Spain._ By WILLIAM
STIRLING, M. A. 3 vols. London: Ollivier.

Page 81: Footnote 19 _The Dodo and its Kindred; or, the History,
Affinities, and Osteology of the Dodo, Solitaire, and other Extinct
Birds of the Islands Mauritius, Rodriguez, and Bourbon._ By H.
E. STRICKLAND, M.A. F.G.S., F.R.G.S., President of the Ashmolean
Society, &c., and A. G. MELVILLE, M.D., Edinburgh, M.R.C. . One
vol., royal quarto: London, 1848.

Page 112: Footnote 24 _Memoirs and Adventures of Sir Wm. Kirkaldy of
Grange, Knight, &c. &c._ WM. BLACKWOOD & SONS, Edinburgh and London.





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