24 AUGUST 1912, Page 15


[To THE EDITOR OP THE Sracraron.']

Sin,—Your correspondent "J. C. F.," in your issue of August 17th, speaks of the translation of the Odes of Horace, reviewed by you on August 3rd, as by Mr. Morris. This is a mistake. The translator's name is Marris. There is a difference of one letter only, but it is as well to be accurate, especially in the case of what seems to me a somewhat remarkable achievement. I have spent thirty-five years in India in the same service to which Mr. Marris belongs ; and few indeed are the cases within my recollection of men who have found the leisure, and have bad the energy, amid the ceaseless drudgery of the life of an Indian civilian, to keep in touch with literature and to bear in remembrance the scholarship they learned at Oxford. Palmam qui 9neruit ferat. Let the name of such a one be recollected.

As I am writing, may I add a word on the subject of the decreasing attractiveness of Indian Service dealt with by your correspondent " D. R.," in your last issue, under the head of " The Rise of Prices in India" ? He mentions three great factors which formerly lent attraction to an Indian career. I would add a fourth, the existence of the Civil, Military, and Medical Funds, which made good provision for the widows and children of subscribers, and were therefore a comfort to an Indian officer throughout his career. The two latter were abolished long ago, with effects on the Services affected of which I am not competent to speak. The former was abolished in or about 1882, no doubt with some saving to the Exchequer, but to the grievous loss of the Civil Service, a loss far more than commensurate with the saving. A new fund was started by the Secretary of State, but it is not the equal of any of the old ones. I am not acquainted with details, but I know that no longer can it be said that a civilian is worth £300 a year dead or alive. More's the pity ! In the circumstances of India the country can have few more valuable assets than the possession of a body of administrators contented, and free from anxiety as to the future of themselves and their families.