15 DECEMBER 1855, Page 16


Scarborough, 13th December 1855.

Sue—One of the most remarkable moralists of the age is Sir Arthur Hal- lam Elton. According to his ethical code, (as propounded in your paper of the 8th instant,) no one has any business to interfere with a thief who is not plundering his own property ! A very agreeable neighbour Sir Arthur Elton would be, and a very useful friend! The illustration of " the scamp and the hen-roost," though homely enough, was perfectly just. To say that France was another "scamp," (a point not proved,) is beside the question. If an honest man sees a thief plundering property and wants help to bring him to justice, he is not to stop to inquire into the character of every man that comes to his assistance. What would be thought of the plea from a felon's counsel, that his client had no right to be in the dock, because the policeman who apprehended him was a man of bad character ? This would be quite as absurd as to " abuse the plaintiff's attorney." We are not " picking the pockets" of Russia : we are simply endeavouring to draw the bear's teeth, that he may not be dangerous to those in his neighbourhood— and ultimately to ourselves. If ever there was a war of pure self-defence, it is this one : and as no man considers his property safe until he has not only driven the burglar out of his house but has put it out of his power to injure him again, so neither can Turkey be considered safe until Russia has been effectually humbled. How that humiliation is to be brought about, no one can possibly tell. But to be content with saying, that, because you have frightened the robber from your premises he will not trouble you again, and that, therefore, you care not a straw about the mischief he inflicts elsewhere, is a monstrous doctrine—a selfish doctrine, subversive of every social relation —neither honourable nor expedient.