3 SEPTEMBER 1898, Page 22


MB Nineteenth Century has no very striking article, but "Endymion," the poem by Mr. Phillips with which the number opens, is one of which, in its sad melodiousness, Keats would not have been ashamed. It is useless to make extracts, for they in no wise convey the total effect of bright-thoughted melancholy which pervades the poem, and gives it, to us at least, a magic charm, but it is only to true poets that fancies occur like this. Selene is speaking :—

" At times indeed it seems to me that I Was later born than ever the sun or stars, And that, perchance, so many faces raised, So many ballads lone, and secret strings, So many far, far thoughts, and spoken names Slowly created in the heaven this are, And made the sadness that my being is."

—Mr. W. Sharp's account of " The Art Treasures of America" is as yet rather too much of a catalogue to be highly interesting, but there is a conclusion to come, in which, perhaps, he will tell us what, in his judgment, is the direction of the dawning American love for art, and in what it is differentiated from the English. That the *Union will acquire vast galleries of pictures is certain, for not only the taste of the wealthy, but the fashion which reigns among them, inclines that way, their means are limitless, and the pur- chases they make will all in the end go to enrich public collections ; but we should like to know if there is any general bias beyond the desire to have value for the money expended.

We have a fancy, which may be merely a result of ignorance, that a rich American left to his own judgment always prefers a picture of some historic incident, that, in fact, his instinct is to supplement literature by art rather than to enjoy art for its own sake.—The study of Fronde, the historian, by Mr. F. Harrison, is a brilliant piece of writing, and we sympathise with its general judgment, which is that Froude's narratives were as inaccurate and as powerful as if he had been an epic

poet; but we are not sure that Mr. Harrison does not a little underrate, in his indignation at Froude's blunderings or mis- representations, the accuracy of the broad effects which he produces. We would, however, forgive him a worse difference

of opinion than this for the sake of the following paragraph :

" There is more to be said for literary form in historical com- position than the present generation is wont to allow. Abstracts of complicated documents with abundant archaeological setting do not need any literary form, nor can they endure such setting any more than grammars, dictionaries, or catalogues of microscopic entozoa. But all compilations of original research not fused into the form of art, remain merely the text-books of the special student, and are closed to the general public. They have a purely esoteric value for the few, however profound be their learning, however brilliant the discoveries they set forth. Perhaps no historian in this century has exercised a more creative force over modern research than Savigny , but his great historical work is a closed book to the general public as much as is his purely legal work. Now, it is the public which history must reach, modify, and instruct, if it is to rise to the level of humane science and be more than pedantic antiquarianism. And nothing, can reach the public as history, unless it be organic and propor- tioned in structure, impressive by its epical form, and instinct with the magic of life."

The historian, in brief, should be a sculptor, not an anatomist. —We hardly see the utility of once more depicting the horrors of the prisons of Paris under the Terror, but Mr. H.

Schutz-Wilson has described them with a terse realism which interests even unwilling readers. We had hardly recognised before the exceptionally horrid fate of the ladies imprisoned, or how completely autocratic the gaolers in these prisons were.—We are not greatly interested in Mr. Oswald Simon's protest against thb idea that it is the duty ar the destiny of the Jews to become a nation in the modern sense, their duty and destiny being to diffuse a religious idea; and even less in Father Clarke's furious attack on "Helbeck of Bannisdale" as a monstrous caricature of Catholicism ; but there is an amusing history of " un- parliamentary expressions," and the scenes they have occasionally produced, by Mr. Michael MacDonagh; and those who are interested in the Catholic controversy will find the Catholic view of "Primitive Christianity" ably stated by Mr. Lilly. Needless to add that he thinks the "ruling" influence in that Christianity was the apostle Peter, who "reconciled" the views of St. Paul with those insisted on by St. James.

The first and most important paper in the Contemporary Review is an extraordinarily well written, though ferocious, attack by Mr. E. J. Dillon on the "Constitutional" Govern- ment of Spain. He describes this, in brief, as a Government of thieves intent only on plunder, and declares that all classes in Spain are eager to sweep it away, as they well may be if

there is any truth—and there is much—in this description of it by a Carlist leader:— "A band of unscrupulous stump orators whose opinions are influenced by their stomachs ; who for a quarter of a century mercilessly fleeced the patient people now perishing of hunger; who sent ravenous beasts of prey to the colonies, which were despoiled as if by armed and triumphant enemies ; who squandered all the money thus collected in de moralising others and pampering themselves ; who kept the army and navy without artillery, rifles, ammunition. cruisers, coal, or even pay; who left Spain's last and most precious colonies utterly without defence ; who recalled the one general who was on the point of restoring order in Cuba, and stigmatised his patriotism as cruelty in order that their own treasonable neglect should be termed diplomatic prudence; who cheerfully humiliated their country and insulted its defenders in order to maintain peace, and yet allowed the country to drift helplessly into war; who, when our colonies might have yet been defended by the timely dispatch of reinforcements, merely massed troops at home to fight against Spaniards for the perpetuation of their own misrule ; who systematically paralysed the heroic efforts of defence made by the neglected army and navy, and then with nameless baseness shifted the blame for failure on to our gallant defenders, whom they hold up to obloquy; who, when Cavite fell and the flower of Spain's sons was being mourned for, went off to indulge in the coarse pleasures of the bull-fight ; who, when Cervera's squadron was destroyed, uttered pointless public jests, and when Santiago fell perpetrated scandalous practical jokes upon the Press and the nation ; who extinguished liberty while pretending to further its cause; who demoralised the people while hypocriti- cally claiming to raise the moral standard of the masses ; who raised lying to the level of a fine art, rendered justice a myth, made elementary education a department of mendicity supported by mendacity, and established roguery, embezzlement, and every species of dishonesty and corruption as current conditions of the Civil Service; and who have now wound up their activity by leaving Spain without colonies, without a fleet, without fury's, withous industry, without commerce, almost without agriculture, with an enormous financial deficit, a depreciated currency, and a famine to come—bankrupt in money and in honour--such a band of — men will surely vanish like the forces of Sennacherib when we unfurl our banner, were it only from abject fear of being visited at last by physical punishment, the only species of suffering to which they are sensible."

The priests are decidedly Carlist, as is a large section of the population, and the only doubt is as to the action of the Army, which the Government has made great efforts to con- ciliate, but which may be shaken when the embittered colonial regiments return home. Mr. Dillon thinks no rival Government except that of Don Carlos is possible, and believes that the " Legitimate King " would concede "regional" administration,—that is, redivide Spain into its old provinces. We doubt it, and think if the people are

really seeking "Home-rule," as is quite possible, they will seek it through a Federal Republic. Observe, however, that the people as such have not moved, that General Weyler has not chosen his side, and that the "famine," of

which Mr. Dillon makes much, usually disinclines populations to insurrection. They are too dispirited.

Every one, however, who cares about the destiny of Spain should read Mr. Dillon's incisive paper.—Mr. Little sends a valuable sketch of the valley of the Yangtse, river nearly as great as the Amazon. Rising in the table- land of Thibet, it pursues to Shanghai a course of three thousand miles, of which two thousand are navigable, through one of the richest and most populous regions in the world. One of its families, the Li family, of which Li Hung Chang is the head, is the richest in China, perhaps in the world, owning hundreds of square miles of most fertile rioefields. The total area of the Yangtse basin is six hundred thousand square miles—three times the area of France—with a

population of one hundred and eighty million souls. Mr. Little thinks that we should insist upon this basin as our "sphere of influence," and would even annex it to the

Queen's dominion, blaming Lord Rosebery for not assenting to such a partition of China when it was proposed to him.

But where are we to get the means of governing directly so huge a slice of the world P—We have hardly left space to notice the remaining articles, but we have ourselves read with great interest Mr. A. Goodrich-Freer's account of the

41. Christian Legends of the Hebrides," most of which teach liberality in almsgiving, and have noted with a smile the plea

for the• introduction of representative government into the Salvation Army, and for more regular payment of its officers. That is the regular course of change as enthusiasm dies out.

By far the most valuable of the political articles in the Fortnightly is Mr. Theodore A. Cook's paper on the original intention of the "Monroe Doctrine." Mr. Cook fairly establishes his point that Monroe, with the concurrence of Madison and Jefferson, meant to lay down a combined policy which England and the United States were to follow on the continent of America as against all other Powers, "a policy which might just as well have been given out by England, but was announced from Washington to avoid any appear- ance of dictation by the Mother Country. If France and Russia did not at first recognise the hand of Canning behind the message of Monroe, they could not long have failed to realise the true meaning of his words, as his original intention was again clearly emphasised when next the Monroe doctrine came into the view of practical politicians. For the Clayton- Bulwer Treaty, relating to affairs in Central America, definitely agrees that neither the United States nor Great Britain should have a preponderating control, and further stipulates that any canal cut from sea to sea should be preserved for the use of all the world, and its neutrality guaranteed by Great Britain and the United States; by these two, together, because it was recognised that each was an American Power." An interesting comment on the present eitriation is furnished by a letter from Jefferson to Monroe in which he says :—

" I candidly confess that I have ever looked on Cuba as the most interesting addition which could ever be made to our system of states. The controul which, with Florida point, this island would give us over the Gulph of Mexico, and the countries and the isthmus bordering cn it, as well as all those whose waters Bow into it, would fill up the measure of our political wellbeing. Yet, as I am sensible that this can never he obtained, even with her own consent, but by war ; and as her independence, which is our second interest, and especially her independence of England, can be secured without it, I have no hesitation at abandoning my first wish to future chances, and accepting its independence with peace and the friendship of England, rather than its association, at the expense of a wiz and her enmity."

—Mr. J. C. Bailey hails, in M. de Heredia, the Cuban poet elected to the French Academy on the strength of a single volume of sonnets, the lineal descendant of Pinder. In his view M. Heredia sees life " neither as a school of morals nor a hothouse of sentiment : what he sees in it is the most splendid of pageants." Mr. Bailey describes these sonnets as a series of historical cartoons, and his quotations certainly go a long way to justify his eulogies. M. de Heredia, represents the period of concentration and self-criticism in the romantic movement which began with Hugo, and it is significant that he does not attempt to in- terpret the life of his own time, but fixes his vision exclusively on ancient times and remote countries.

Ur. Henniker Heaton indulges in a pardonable ponn of triumph on " Imperial Penny Postage at Last." Confessing that words fail him to render justice to the subject, he appeals to Mr. Rudyard Kipling to immortalise in verse the effects of the decision announced at the late Conference.—Mr. B.

Paul Neuman finds the only true solution of the juvenile offenders problem in the establishment of ideal boys' clubs modelled on the lines of the Elmira Reformatory in New York, and appeals to the munificence of private benefactors to remedy the apathy of the State. With many of Mr. Neuman's criticisms it is difficult to disagree. Constructively the article strikes us as humanitarianism run wild.—Mr. Charles Bright pleads eloquently for the establishment of an All- British or Anglo-American Pacific cable. Amongst the chief reasons adduced in support of the scheme is the curious fact that at present "when tike West wishes to communicate with the East, or the East with the West, the message has to be sent backwards round two hemispheres."—The article on "The Carlist Policy in Spain" signed by the Marquis de Rnvigny and Cranston Metcalfe resolves itself into an appeal to the Spanish Army to overthrow the present Monarchy and set up Don Carlos, concerning whom the writers boldly declare that "the devotion and enthusiasm which he has inspired among his followers is only equalled by the dignity with which he has supported himself under adversity." Surely there is more devotion than discretion in this panegyric.—The tone and temper of Mr. Alexis Kransse's indictment of our policy in China may best be gathered from his question, " Is Lord Salisbury too old to learn ; or is he bent on pursuing his gou, gon ' attitude, and continuing his aspect of smug in- difference to the bitter end P "—Of the two papers on Prince Bismarck that of Mr. W. H. Dawson contains a good account of his peculiar qualities as a public speaker. Bismarck, it seems, "never made his appearance [in the Reichstag] before he was ready to speak."

Recent sensational developments of the Dreyfus case lend a poignant interest to the " Letters of an Innocent " pub- lished in the National Review. These are translations of the letters written by Dreyfus to his wife from December 5th, 1894, the date at which the military Vehmgericht first allowed him to communicate to her after his arrest, up to January 5th, 1895, the day of his public degradation. The tone of these touching letters is certainly difficult to reconcile with Dreyfus's guilt. It is worthy of note that " Huguenot," who translates the letters and provides an introduction, declares that " all Alsatians regard Dreyfus as a martyr and think that Fiance is gone mad." The enterprise and per- sistence displayed by Mr. Masse in this campaign on behalf of justice and truth deserve the highest praise.— Mr. Walter B. Harris gives reasons for his conviction that Spain, under the military dictatorship that he believes will be shortly established, will strike a blow at Morocco, and appeals to the European Cabinets to watch her action with the utmost vigilance, holding that " there is no rashness to which Spaniards will not proceed in order to save themselves from revolution and to gain popularity at home. —Mr. A. Maurice Low in his admirably written article on "The Month in America," emphasises, amongst other lessons of the war, the value of the regulars as compared with the volunteers. He also gives figures proving the past twelvemonth to have been the most successful year of commerce the States have ever known.—Professor Oliver Lodge contributes an enthusiastic " appreciation " of the scientific work of Lord Rayleigh, and the " Episodes of the Month " show the writer's usual vigour and vivacity.

The three topical articles in an excellent number of Blackwood—on "The Spaniard at Home," by Miss Hannah Lynch ; a summary of the recently published memoirs of the Marquis de Pol tvieja, Governor of Caba in 1890-1892 ; and an anonymous paper on "The Company and the Individual"— are all good reading. Miss Lynch brings out with an abundance of apt illustration the democratic aspect of Spanish social life, and the absence of pose and snobbishness amongst the nobles. On the other hand, she admits that " a drearier, emptier, or less intelligent form of humanity does not exist on the face of the earth than the Spanish aristocracy." Her verdict, in short, is summed up in the observation that the Spanish aristocrats have redeeming features, but "they are inadequate, just as are the virtues of the entire race." It is interesting to learn that Spanish mothers rarely make favourites of their sons, and surprising to be informed that in every respect, save that of spitting, the middle class are cleaner than the English or French.—" The Looker-on " traces the real motive of the Americans in making war to the spirit of Imperialism, and in a damaging estimate of Bismarck, whom he considers infelix opportanitate mortis, deals unsparingly with the alleged sinister association of the Chancellor and the Crown Prince —the present Kaiser—on the death of the old Emperor.— Fiction is brilliantly represented by " Youth : a Narrative," in which Mr. Joseph Conrad brings home to us in a series of wonderful word-pictures the glamour and the treachery of the ancient sea, the mystery of the East " perfumed like a flower, silent like death, dark like a grave," and the triumphant self-confidence of youth.

Cosmopolis contains two articles upon Bismarck, one in English by Frederick Greenwood and one in German by Max Lenz.— Miss Elizabeth Lee's paper called "A German Novelist on German Women" deals with the novels of Gabriele Renter. These are sad and very powerful pictures of the lives of unmarried women of the middle class. We are less inclined than Miss Lee to see either a purpose or a moral in these stories, so far as the present paper puts them before us. Reformers surely point a way out of a wrong situation, but Fraulein Renter seems to revel in her walled maze. Sudermann's "Magda" found a way out, but that was by what we may call an "emergency exit." "She," says Miss Lee, "is a woman of genius who justifies her action by her success ; it is the women of mediocre powers that must be helped." We quite agree that these latter bad better ignore Magda. — M. Rod sends another charming article on "Gene et Choses de Sicile." This time it is a very sad account of the life among Sicilian miners. Two francs a day is good pay in prosperous times. A large part of the work in these hot and sulphurous mines is done by young boys. M. Rod gives an account of an incident which happened to himself in the " bottega,"—i.e., the provision shop for the miners. A group of men are buying food :—" Comme je les regarde, un d'entre mix sort de leur groupe et vient me mettre son pain noir sons le nez. Son geste, d'aillenrs elegant, a je ne sais quelle inquietante ironie. Evidemment cet homme vent me dire, ' Voyez voila ce qne je mange; vows n'y toucheriez pas. " At fifty these men are worn out and good for nothing. They end their days as beggars, but in this province at least they do not revolt : —" Ile ne sont pas mechants,' me dit l'ingenieur." —" Obeissance Passive " is a pretty little story of the triumph of virtue and the failure of vice. Somehow, when the little man who represents vice dies, the reader feels sorry. That is the French author's little revenge upon a public who like a good end now and then : "Et avec un bout de sourire oh passait la conscience do pen de chose qu'il a ate phyeiquement et moralement le sentiment de l'inutilite de sa vie d'ecervele et d'oisif Pepite Perte,' mnrmnra-t-il, et it expire."