5 MAY 1894, Page 22


THE Contemporary Review gives M. Jules Simon the place of honour with his plan for disarmament. The aged statesman draws an even exaggerated picture of the present situation, which is, he contends, crushing the nations, and can end only in a disarmament or a war, which will, he believes, cost eight millions of lives, and put back humanity six centuries, as it were, in a day. The victors will be wrecked as well as the conquered. And yet disarmament is well-nigh impos- sible. " It means the renunciation of twenty years' trials and sacrifices. It is risking all our conquests. It is sinking to the level of those whom we have distanced by superhuman efforts." "It is all very well for a homily, but it is not prac- tical politics." The only plan which is feasible is to leave things in principle as they are, but to lighten the burden by an agreement to reduce the period of active service for the infantry to one year. The saving would be from twenty to twenty-four millions sterling, and with that money, what might not be accomplished for European progress, and this without altering in the least the relative position of the nations ? That is, as we have repeatedly pointed out, the scheme nearest to a practical one which has yet been suggested; but it is, we fear, a dream. The warrior nations distrust each other too much, and would be too afraid lest an advantage in speed of mobilisation should give to one or other of them a facility of invasion. It is pleasant, however, to hear the words of M. Jules Simon, even if we reckon them only as a counsel of perfection.—Mr. R. H. Hutton contributes one more study of Mr. Gladstone, the pith of which is, we take it, that the retired statesman has always been essentially an orator, that like every great orator he has received much from his audiences, and that the ultra-liberalism of his later years has been due in no small measure to the magnitude of the audiences whom he was addressing or striving to reach. He was no more dishonest than any other receptive orator who gives back in flood what comes up to him in vapour. He has, moreover, always been preaching a kind of gospel of international altruism, his Irish proposals being what was owed to the Irish in reparation. The difficulty is, of course, to reconcile that view with the strange fact that Mr. Gladstone has always addressed an English majority first of all, and that it has not always sent him in vapour what he gave back in flood. On the contrary, in the Irish case, at all events, the spirit the English crowd has exhaled, has been the contrary of the spirit Mr. Glad- stone has been preaching. He has had to wrestle with oppo- nents, not to take from them anything which could add to the strength of his own convictions or the fervour of his own enthusiasm. He has, in fact, seemed to be roused by battle rather than by assent. Mr. Gladstone, however, cannot be judged fully in this generation, or till his secret correspondence with his Sovereign and his colleagues is given to the world.— Mr. F. Greenwood makes a strong and effective attack on the New Hedonism, but might have chosen a stronger opponent than Mr. Grant Allen, a writer who, whatever his merits, has certainly not the faculty of persuasiveness. We should fancy he loses for his popular philosophy more disciples than he gains, by suddenly revealing to them the morass of filth upon the edge of which they stand.—Mr. A. Houston gives an in- structive account of the position of the Disestablished Church in Ireland. It has, at all events, managed its finance well, having in twenty-one years increased its assets from the

£7,056,000 at which they stood on December 31st, 1872, by £600,000. He maintains, moreover, that the Church itself has spirituallybenefited, the laity and the clergy having drawn closer together, while Irish Protestants are no longer re- garded with any feeling of hostility by their Catholic fellow- countrymen. The Disestablishment of the Church in Ireland was a just act; but we fear the last consequence deduced from it by Mr. Houston is a little too roseate in colour. The Pres- byterian Church in Ireland never has been established ; but we doubt if Catholics loved it much more than they did its Episcopalian rival.—Mr. Darlington sends a quantity of statistics to prove that the Established Church does not advance in Wales, as compared with Nonconformist Churches ; but he does not authenticate them sufficiently, and his real animus reveals itself in the following paragraph : —" In conclusion, let me say that the main obstacle to the success of the Welsh Church lies in herself. If she would think less of attacking other religious organisations, and more of her duties towards the nation for which she claims to exist, she would have a better chance of regaining her lost position as a national Church. So long as the Church continues to oppose the legitimate aspirations of the Welsh people, to depreciate the Welsh language and literature, and to stand coldly aloof from every manifestation of the national senti- ment, so long will the Welsh people continue to look to the Nonconformist bodies, rather than to her, for the guidance of their national destinies." That is to say, the movement against the Episcopal Church is part of a movement for separation from Great Britain,—a " Nationalist" movement, as the Irish call it.—Mr. Auberon. Herbert argues, in " The Ethics of Dynamite," that the Anarchist movement, which sets up the most savage and direct of all tyrannies, is nothing but the natural outcome of the system of over-government pursued by all rulers. It is a curicus paradox, pleasant to read as an intellectual speculation, but having no other

valve —M Lanin, who so furiously assails Russia, draws an extraordinary picture of the regeneration of Bosnia under the administration of the Hungarian, M. de Kallay, perhaps the most successful governing person now alive in Europe. He has changed a desolate Oriental province into a civilised State in perfect order, with every means of prosperity,

and already loyal through all its varied peoples, to the House of Hapsburg :—

" For the material prosperity of the land they have almost wrought miracles. There were but 450 kilometres of carriage roads in 1878, and a waggon or wheeled vehicle was as great a curiosity as in Venice. To-day there are 3,450 kilometres of excellent carriage roads, a railway net of 700 kilometres which is being annually extended, and all that money and engineering skill can do is being done to render the rivers navigable. In ten years the output of cereals has been more than doubled in quan- tity and in money value ; the breed of horses has been wonderfully improved, and the value of live-stock has increased from 35,800,000 to 50,600,000 guldens. The total value of agricultural produce is now estimated at 91,345,000 guldens. Coal mines afford lucrative employment to a hirge number of peasants who live in healthy little cottages with gardens attached, are provided for by the Government in case of illness or accidents, and save up money to purchase land; the output of the mines has increased by several hundred per cent. during the past few years. New industries have been created; old ones that were dying out have been re- vived ; model farms have been erected in various parts of the country. Banks have been opened, and have assisted the kmets to purchase the land they cultivate ; and no less than 11,985 farms have been actually thus bought by the peasants from the begs ; schools are being founded, a university is in contemplation; the statistics of crime are an eloquent testimony to their beneficent influence upon the rising generation; and the prison system is probably the most humane and ameliorative in Europe."

The whole article is full of interest ; but the most curious paragraphs in it refer to the Bogomiles, a Christian sect only just disappearing, who held the doctrine of the Manicheans, believing that God had two sons, Satanael and Jesus, Ahriman and Ormnzd. They were Protestant in ecclesiastical forms, and were hated by the Catholics so bitterly that when the Turks conquered Bosnia, they most of them adopted Islam. Many, however, only pretended, and the last Manichean family is believed to have died out just before the Austrians extended toleration to all creeds.

In the Nineteenth. Century, the " Five Specimens of the Love Odes of Horace" would be more interesting than they are if we wanted any proof of Mr. Gladstone's versatile activity of mind. He has carried in his mind, possibly from old Eton days, these "vain, amatorious poems" (do Etonians still learn "Audivere, Lyce, di mea vota " P), and has employed an enforced vacation from books in translating them. Some felicities may be found in them,—as, e.g., " Tell as well Icarian seas ! " for " scopulis surdior Icari ; " and " once a

flambeau, now an ash," for " dilapsam in cineres facem." "Blackening teeth and whitening hair" gives the contrast of " luridi dentes et capitis nives " epigrammatically enough. But it must be confessed that the effect of the whole is dis- appointing. The translations want finish. Everything comes to him that waits, even rhymes that seem hopeless. " Dwell- ings of the youth she storms" is good enough for " expugnat iuvenum domos ; " and if the second line had to be found in five minutes, with the interests of an Empire clamouring at the doors, " To her passion she conforms " might pass ; still, it is what schoolboys call " fill up." In the " Quid flee, Asterie ? "-

"Thou, lest young Enipeus please, Please too much, so near to touch And to view, beware,"

is just such another. " Vicinus " is all that Horace says. Nor are these the only examples that might be found.—Lora Meath suggests that some Indian Princes should receive life peerages, and sit in the House of Lords, and says that two Indian Princes, both semi-independent Sovereigns, to whom.

he mentioned the idea, welcomed it with pleasure. We see little harm in the idea, provided it were made a rigid etiquette that the Princes should not speak above once a week upon their own grievances against the Government of India. With- out that proviso they would occupy the whole time of the House. We do not, however, anticipate any good result from the proposal. The Princes do not represent anybody, they do

not really know India beyond their own dominions, and they are much better occupied at home in learning how to govern. Indians rarely benefit by a sojourn in the West.—Dr. William Barry tells us that "Demos is awakening," and indulges in epigrammatic remarks upon that subject. One, that " the Fifth Monarchy has turned out to be the reign of Mammon," looks true at first sight ; but is Mammon reigning, or iss he, rather frightened, defending himself against incessant attacks? Dr. Barry's general view is that all evil is owing- to the capitalist, against whom he indulges in the following diatribe:—

"The Divine right of capitalists runs on a very unlucky parallel with the Divine right of kings. It is but a prose version of that old and now exploded doctrine. . . . . . Of all conceivable oligarchies, none is so vile as the ring of confederate money- makers, plotting how they shall compel the labouring multitude- to struggle among themselves for the lowest wage. We may say to them, with the Eastern proverb, 'If you were sheep, you would/ be blind and lame; if you were water, you would be froth ; if you were wool, you would be refuse.' Yet into the hands of such men• has the government of modern States since 1789 been committed. Make what deductions you will on the score of progress from the tables of misery drawn up by competent observers : still it remains- a fact that material civilisation has brought to extreme depths of vice and suffering numbers so vast that they would form a people- in themselves. Too truly has it been said, Thou halt multiplied the nation and thou halt not increased the joy.' Mercantile greed) and bourgeois economics must answer for the wilderness of dark cities and the brutalised villages, on which, as on an immeasurable- dusthe,ap and mountain of abomination, our colossal wealth has• been raised to its present height."

Dr. Barry hopes for cure in the Christianising of the- democracy, but he does not suggest how this is to be effected.

Instead, he indulges in an immense quantity of vague- phrases compelling us, though we agree with his main propo-

sition, to set him down, as far as this article is concerned, as a bit of a windbag.—So, we fear, is Mr. G. F. Parker, who writes on intellectual progress in the United States, and who- only tells us, with many statistics, that the means of intellec- tual progress are improving. There are more colleges, schools,. newspapers, and opportunities for travel. All that is well,. but Englishmen knew all that, and what they want to know, now is whether the general level of intelligence in America is improving, and whether she is developing any class- devoted to study and reflection alone. We do not doubt that the answer in both cases is affirmative, but we. want the evidence, which Mr. Parker will pardon us for saying is not contained in a statement that there are now- many colleges and nineteen thousand newspapers, or in a sen- tence like this :- " We hear a great deal at home, and I sometimes hear its echoes here, about the corruptions of public men, of the going down into the gutter of practical politics, and of the degradation incident to actual participation in public affairs ; but every man who has had an opportunity to see must know that, with all its faults, the busi- ness of the public is managed with as much honesty, as great devotion to noble ideals, and as much efficiency as any other."

We never meet an American who does not deny that, and) admit that everything is well managed in America except• public affairs.—Most of the articles in this number are a little thin; but two contain some new information. Mr. G. P. Bidder, Q.C., states that to restrict the output of coal is to ruin the coalowners, because the fixed ex-

penses, which do not vary with quantity in the case of a low output, swallow up all profit. They would not if

the price could be raised; but it is found that any such raising diminishes demand, and also invites foreign competi- tion. A "living wage," he affirms, cannot be fixed, because that would mean a wage not varying with work, but one which must be paid, whether the pit is working from slack demand. three days a week, or six. He believes that the only way in which the interest of the coalowner and the miner can be made identical is profit-sharing,—that is, by fixing a minimum

interest for capital and a minimum wage for the worker, and dividing all profit above that. That is a good plan, but Mr.

Bidder still leaves us perplexed. If a minimum wage can be fixed in order to introduce profit-sharing, why is it impossible without the latter device ? The men must have enough to live on, whether they share or do not share.—Professor P. Frankland gives us hope that we may yet be rid of those

modern nuisances,—microbes and bacilli. He says sunshine will destroy them :-

" In order to ascertain the effect of daylight on the bacteria in a running stream two young German enthusiasts lately carried out an interesting experiment on the river Isar above Munich. These investigators sat a whole night by the river bank, from six in the evening until six on the following morning, determining the number of microbes in the water at various intervals of time. The experiments were made towards the end of September, and they commenced their watch about sunset at a quarter past six in the evening. At this time 160 bacteria were found in about twenty drops of water ; but at three and four o'clock in the morning, when the water had therefore been for several hours in darkness, there were more than twice, and even three times, that number of germs present, indicating that in the absence of their deadly foe, the sun, they had multiplied with great freedom—only, however, as was found when morning approached and day wore on, to be kept once more in subjection and reduced in number."

Mr. Frankland gives some further evidence, and will, we dare say, treat with scorn our humble question. If one bacillus gets inside us it multiplies at a most alarming pace, and how is sunshine to get at that destructive creature ? We cannot bottle sunshine for draught, or even administer it in a pill. Still, it is something to know that sunshine purifies water instead of making it worse.

The number of the Fortnightly is not a good one. Professor Karl Pearson believes, as we understand him, that religion is no longer necessary, especially to women, because man is developing a tribal conscience which takes its place. Altruism, in fact, will do for a religion. He looks forward therefore to a time when women will cease to be dependent upon individual

men, and there will be "a national insurance against mother- hood," which will be treated as a time of disability. The im-

pression made on our minds by the article is that the Professor looks forward to a period of free love with State care of the consequent children ; but he is so obscure that we willingly acknowledge we may be doing him injustice. Only if marriage is to continue, the dependence on the individual will continue too.—Mr. Grant Allen offers a rather whimsical, but still interesting, theory as to the origin of agriculture. What induced early man to believe if he buried seeds he would get something to eat ? Clearly, says Mr. Grant Allen, he dug a bole to bury his dead brother, he put seeds in that hole as food for his brother, and those seeds grew. He adduces as further evidence the K bond custom of strewing blood and

bits of human flesh over a field, the whole of which they obviously regarded as a grave :-

" Originally, men noticed that food-plants grew abundantly from the laboured and well-manured soil of graves. They observed that this richness sprang from a coincidence of three factors— digging, a sacred dead bady, and seeds of food-stuffs. In time, they noted that if you dug wide enough and scattered seed far enough, a single corpse was capable of fertilising a considerable area. The grave grew into the field or garden. But they still thought it necessary to bury some one in the field ; and most of the evidence shows that they regarded this victim as a divine per- sonage ; that they considered him the main source of growth or fertility ; and that they endeavoured to deserve his favour by treating him well during the greater part of his lifetime."

That strikes us as purely fanciful ; but Mr. Grant Allen has made a curiously interesting collection of the same customs prevailing in widely separated parts of the world.—Mr. Harrison continues his eloquent sketch of the great place occupied by Constantinople in history, and repeats his deduction that Russia in possession of that capital must be too strong for Europe, and especially for England. He thinks, too, that France can give Russia possession if she chooses ; and arrives finally at the dictum that England and France

must leave off snarling over Egypt, or Europe will suffer a great blow. The paper is well worth reading, but we cannot say we believe much in prophetic politics. Suppose victory in the Great War declares for the Triple Alliance ?—Mr. Barclay, in his paper on " The Appreciation of Gold," gives a table of interest which shows conclusively that the fall in the price of silver since 1849 has had no effect in checking the increase of its production, which has risen from 780,000 kilo- grammes, when the price was 5s. an ounce, to 4,729,000 kilo- grammes in 1892, when the price was 3s. 4d. The cause of

this was the steady appreciation of the value of the gold paid for the silver. Mr. Barclay contends that this appre- ciation is due almost solely to the demonetisation of silver, which set gold to do double work, and holds that although one nation can no longer arrest the process, all nations combined might. But will they combine F-31. Frederic Carrel compares English and French manners with fairness, but with a rather distinct preference for the latter, and sums up his conclusions in a line, " The French recognise un- orthodoxy in morals, while the English do not." That is true; but we should carry it to English, not to French, credit. We should have said, however, that M. Carrel rather exaggerates the area of French immorality, judging the nation too much from its cities. That is clearly the opinion of Mr. Hamerton, a very impartial observer, with unusual opportunities of ascertaining the truth as to country life.

Blackwood gives the first place to a really curious contri- bution to the Tennyson papers. It is a journal kept by Miss Lanesborough, who lived with the Tennysons at Beech Hill in 1839 in the disguise of a servant, which she had adopted in order to wait on her friend, Mrs. Neville. The narrative does not add much to our knowledge of the poet, unless it be in the following paragraph :— " Many a laugh must she and Mary Tennyson have had over the situation, as they sat together in the twilight, dreaming, and talking over 'the past,' listening to Alfred as he read them his latest verses on their favourite dreary," Mariana in the Moated Grange' (Louisa's copy of which differs somewhat from the printed poem), or sketching the Things' which Alfred was wont to aver he saw in the small hours or 'before a midnight fire,'— strange grim forms, half human, half beast, which, some from Alfred Tennyson's, some from Louisa Lanesborough's pen, now lie before me, with a sonnet of Alfred's, dated 23 May, 1840,' which I have never seen in print."

That notion of sketching things so thoroughly conceived by the mind that they seemed to be seen, reveals a curiously separate strength in Tennyson's imagination. The whole adventure is entertaining, though we should not be surprised to hear that the Tennyson family, who seemed so innocent, had all the while an idea of what was going on.