24 NOVEMBER 1855, Page 9



DIE two vacancies in the Ministry are filled, without the slightest change in the Cabinet; for the appearance of the Duke of Argyll in a second avatar is a change only in the costume of one of the performers, and the entrance of Mr. Labouchere is only the en- trance of Mr. Labouchere. There is indeed no objection to him, and there will be none from any quarter. He is a fair man of business, of most respectable integrity of intellect as well as heart, kindly, discreet, and liberal. The Colonies will dread no oppres- sion or caprice ; the country will fear no trickery ; the enemy will hope for no betrayal of trust. If the affairs of the country were like those of a railway or an insurance-office on a larger scale, we might have a sufficient man; and he has formed one in many a political dinner-party at important junctures. We are all very glad to shake hands once more with Mr. Labouchere.

But how does this appointment meet the conditions which have recently been laid down as imperative? Neither of the appoint- ments constitutes the selection of a man on the presentment of the House of Commons. The Duke of Argyll commands no following, and is not a Commoner. There has been no demand in the Peo- ple's House for the admission of Mr. Labouehere to the Cabinet; we have not seen chalked on the walls of the town "Labouchere and Administrative Reform "; nor have any of the Colonies hinted even the gentlest claim to be ruled by Labouchere. "Why La- bouchere ?"—" Why Argyll P "—these questions are heard rather generally in.society.

When Lord Palmerston-was recommended to make a great coup d' "administrative reform," and to give the vacant Mastership of the Post-office to }lowland Hill, he replied, that such offices as that of Postmaster-General are not required purely for purposes of departmental administration, but for posts to which, in accordance with the constitution, statesmen of high position might be ap- pointed. He implied that the number of recognized posts in the Cabinet are not too-many for the statesmen to fill them, and that lie-could not spare any Cabinet seat Some plausibility was lent to the plea, by Lord John Russell's not having found a depart- mental seat ; only that was excused for a time on the score of Lord John's declining powers, and it was subsequently corrected by a new distribution. We say corrected," because the accept- ance of "a seat in the Cabinet without office" has been regarded as a kind of liberty taken with the public: and not altogether un- reasonably. It is not that the -Cabinet is unrecognized by our constitution, because-That defect might be supplied simply by re- cognizing -the Cabinet, if it has at last grown to years of recogni- tion. Already, however, the position of each individual Cabinet Minister is sufficiently vague. He is simply one of the gene- ral number of Privy Councillors, whom the Prime Minister, with the Royal sanction, desires habitually to have in his company while considering the specific advice -to be 'tendered to the Sovereign; and a departmental office lends some kind of stamp to identify those more responsible Privy Councillors to the public view. There is, however, another reason -yet more tangible. A Minister without office is without salary; and therefore, the com- mercial mind would say, without sufficient interest to deal with public affairs as a matter of business—without, the lawyer would say, the retaining lee -that constitutes the pledge of faithful ser- vice. We are inclined to think that honourable men and the con- stitution would agree in holding that the real responsibility lies in giving advice -to the Sovereign; and that a man is morally and le- gally as much responsible when he gives the advice gratis as when he gives it for so many thousands a year. There may be objec- tions, however, to sanctioning the practice of gratuitous service, which would confer upon the rich a monopoly of office. Lord Pal- meraton's objection seems to turn upon a supposed superabundance of public men as compared with the office. But where are the men for whom titular departments must be kept open—those un- appointed statesmen whom nature and the country call to official .life? Where are they ? Are there no such men ? or will-they-not join the Cabinet ? Do .the statesmen of this country—the statesmen conspicuous by their :birth or wealth—decline to take part with Lord Palmerston and Ida policy; is Belgravia against the war; or can he not find "the right man" for "the right place "? Argyll and Labouchere con- stitute a confession : how is it to be translated into plain English ?


'MIEN the Bishop of Prague and the Bishops of Bohemia com- plained that the civil powers encroached on their privileges by granting immunities to non-Catholic inhabitants, Count Leo Thun is reported to have expressed his surprise that the Prelates should have any further demands to make after he and his master had signed the concordat with Rome; end really, now that we have the text of that concordat before us, we could sympathize with the surprise of the Count, did we not know that there are some appe- tites which nothing ean satisfy, but which only enlarge with the food they have. We have long since passed the time when the Emperor of Germany was regarded as the head of the party in Italy and in Europe arrayed against the Pope. Guelph and Ghibel- line have passed away ; but it might have been supposed that if the distinctions of a religious civil war had faded, it was in part because we had arrived at a period of broad daylight, in which the claims of the Pope upon the obedience of temporal authorities would cease to

be sustained by medissval arrogance. We may wonder at so much of arbitrary power as is retained in the civil government of Aus- tria ; but to imagine that there is still something on earth of a higher kind than that civil authority, would have seemed to be a tax upon poetical imagination. Yet it was a tax which in very deed the Emperor Francis Joseph could be induced to pay, at the instance of Count Leo Thun, and with the concurrence of Count Buol, the president at the recent congress on the affairs of Turkey. Yes, the men of the world who predominate at Vienna have con- sented to one of the most extraordinary alienations of power known in history. We pass over some of the grosser concessions, as being conceded in general terms, and as being also to a certain extent a matter of course. But let us see the specific submissions which the con- cordat makes on behalf of the Emperor to the Pope. The Pope and his clergy are placed in direct communication with the people, end "this communication is in future not to depend upon the ruler of the country," but is to be " completely free." Provision is made for a wide church-extension, in which the Pope and his Bishops are to select all the candidates, under an understanding with his Majesty, more particularly in respect to an order for the necessary revenues. The Papal chair has the power of founding new sees or altering existing sees. The Archbishop and Bishops are enabled to introduce new clerical orders, and congregations of both sexes into their sees ; "consulting" the Imperial Government on the subject. The Church will be entitled to acquire new pos- sessions, both present and future possessions being inviolable. Old or existing foundations cannot be abolished or united with- out consent of the Pope. The Bishops will superintend the religious education of the young in all the public and pri- vate schools; they will point out dangerous books ; which the civil Government is to restrain. All processes with re- ference to the spiritual relations of marriage and betrothals come under -the jurisdiction of the clerical courts, and under the sole sentence of the spiritual judge. It is made a grand concession that priests may be brought before the civil courts ; but a number of mediarral immunities and exceptions are revived in favour of clerical felons and misdemeanants. As a matter of "kindness" to the Emperor, and of "consideration for the public peace," the Pope "consents" to raise tithes only where they still exist ; and he ac- cepts in other places an indemnity for abolished tithes to be made by the Imperial Government. The whole concordat must be con- strued strictly as against the Imperial Government, liberally as against the Papal Government ; for in the 34th article it is stipu- lated, that "everything else relative to ecclesiastics and clerical matters, omitted in the foregoing articles," will be arranged and managed according to the doctrines and disciplines of the Papal Church. The stipulations, therefore, are specific with reference to the Imperial Government, but if a doubt arises with reference to the Papal Government it will be decided by the doctrines and dis- ciplines of that Government. We are far from having exhausted the details ; but it will be seen that the concordat anticipates an extension of the Church, of its congregational orders, its jurisdictions, its territory, its revenues, and its authority over the supreme Imperial 43-o- vernment. It revives to a great extent the temporal invio- lability of the priesthood, and the right of sanctuary ; it gives the entire tuition of the young to the clergy, who have absolute authority. In many of the gravest litigations, it renders the Church judge in its own case ; and in an empire where mixed marriages prevail, it gives the Church the power of a veto upon marriage and betrothal. As a further proof of the arbitrary character belonging to this concordat, by Imperial patent it be- comes law from the date of its publication, with two exceptions, in which the Imperial law, at present varying from the Papal decree, is hereafter to be modified in obedience to it.

On the face of the treaty, the advantage is entirely upon one side ; we must therefore regard the treaty as being in itself the price for a bargain not expressed in its text. That the Austrian Government expects to purchase by this wholesale restitution a new subserviency on the part of the Church, is too obvious to have been overlooked by any one ; and in purchasing the Roman Church, the Emperor appears to engage for his service the most perfect organization that exists in Europe. It is, generally speak- ing, at issue both with the population and with the government of the countries in which it existe ; it is absolutely under the control of one head, that head occupying a seat of government distinct from any European power. It presents therefore an agency with the most conspicuous centre in the world, with branches ramified into every parish where the Roman Church exists, and jealous of its civil co-tenants. The dependent position of the Pope renders him, for Austrian purposes, even more powerful than if he stood alone ; since for some time to come the head of the Roman Church must feel that he owes future as well as present existence to the Emperor. It is true that he has been for many years upheld on his throne in the Eternal City by French troops, with the concur- rence of the English Government ; but Rome is essentially placed in antagonism to France and England. The Pontiff must every day dread the withdrawal of the French bayonets ; his Eastern pro- vinces already rest upon Austrian support; and while he can trust neither the good faith nor permanency of a Napoleonic dynasty, he has every reason in the past to believe that the dynasty of Ru- dolph will endure. We understand, then, that the head of the Ghibelline party has really made his submission to the Church for a consideration. There is no other monarch in Roman Catholic Europe who has justified the trust of Rome. The King of Pros- sia has tolerated mixed proceedings, and to an extent which threatens the substantive existence of the Romanist faith in that part of Germany. The Queen of Spain has earned the eneomiums of the Pope, but she has tolerated a Government which still with- holds absolute submission and which does not restore Church pro- perty. The King of Naples himself has not been absolutely sub- missive. The King of Piedmont has established within the Italian peninsula the most decided example of civil independence, nay of civil superiority to the Church, which has been witnessed since the time of Luther. The post of champion, therefore, was actually vacant; and in becoming the champion of the Church, the Emperor of Austria becomes the possessor of all its influences for Imperial purposes—the lessee, as it were, of his territories by Papal as well as Imperial tenure—the partner of an association which still regu- lates the domestic and personal as well as public affairs of the great majority of the Italian people, to say nothing of a large part of Germany. The gain to the Emperor is not the less because the gain to the Pope is commensurate. It is true that the clergy has been losing in consideration throughout the Italian peninsula, mainly because the temporal power attached to the Church has so manifestly de- clined that any part of the Italian people who could read the in- telligence of the day must have perceived that the Pontiff was gradually acquiring the condition and qualities of a King Log. He could indeed inflict executions at Sinigaglia or Bologna—could confiscate the property or the lives of men who entertained notions of political or moral freedom ; but, however the wretched remnant cf a domestic tyranny might press upon his own subjects, the Pope was becoming impotent abroad. The very Ultra-Catholic party of Ireland has lately moderated its zeal in his service. By this new act, his power and influence become identified with the greatest temporal power exhibited before the people in that part of Europe. Throughout a wide extent of territory, the ordinary law tribunals, the police-courts which regulate civil rights, are now engaged to keep down every possible change of opinion through education, and through the contraction of marriages or other relations of life, which can militate against the influence of

the Pope. We may have had Bible readings in Florence, and the middle classes of the great towns in Italy may have been driven to scepticism by insight into the nature of religious prostitution; while in the centre of Northern Italy has been established a free press, with a flagrant example of the Roman hierarchy reduced to submission under a civil authority. But there the canker of the Papal power now appears to be arrested. The whole of the races of Italy, and all Roman Germany which can be influenced by Austrian authority or example, are now gua- ranteed, by all the power of the Viennese Government, against every conceivable danger from discussion, from domestic alliances, from foreign intercourse, or from any other influence whatsoever; and while Rome is thus restored to its power of an absolute veto upon any progress moral or political, it regains that tenure so distinctly by favour of the Emperor, that it is rendered in all things an agent for his service. This new alliance reminds us of the strange position which Austria now occupies vis-A-vis to all the great powers and in- fluences of Europe. When Prussia urged her to accept the West- ern alliance, she hesitated, then plunged into that alliance in a manner which left Prussia behind, but has nevertheless enabled Austria to remain on some terms understood between Berlin and Vienna. The Emperor of Austria occupies the Principalities against the return of Russia; but in maintaining a certain neutral- ity of action, the young Emperor fulfils the most anxious wish of the Czar, and compliments still pass between St. Petersburg and Vienna. Notwithstanding many just suspicions, the Emperor Francis Joseph is still a member of the Western alliance, sufficient- ly at least to enforce upon France and England a certain forbear- ance when they are dealing with Austrian interests. Ile is in alliance with the allies of Piedmont ; but now we see him in still closer alliance, for Italian and German purposes, with the great spiritual opponent of Piedmont. Be is a negative ally all round, except that by the new concordat Rome and Austria appear com- bined to hunt in couples for the absolute possession of body and soul.