« PreviousContinue »
social party weekly ; - he had charge, well be supposed that I often looked in when I was there, of the drill class, and, on the College of an evening. If I were I think, at other seasons, conducted the in that part of the town when evening cricket club, the gymnastics, or had an came on, I made the Library my clubeye to them. In such a relation as that room, to write a note or to waste an hour. such a man would think of the union I am sure, that, had it been in my powin worship as an essential feature in his er, I should have dropped in often,-50 plans. And here I am tempted to say, pleasant was it to watch the modest work that in a thousand things in England of the place, and the energy of the crowdwhich seem a hopeful improvement on ed rooms,- and so new to me the aspects English lethargy, one catches sight of Dr. of English life it gave. I felt quite sure Arnold as being, behind all, the power that the College was gaining ground, on that is moving. Hodson, in the East-In- the whole. I can easily understand that dian army, seems so different from any- some classes drag, — perhaps some studbody else, that you wonder where he ies, which the managers would be most came from, till it proves he was one of glad to see successful. But, on the whole, Arnold's boys. Price's Candle-Works, there seems spirit and energy,
and of in London, and Spottiswoode's PrintingHouse have been before us here, in all My travelling companion, Chiron, is our studies for the Christian oversight fond of twitting me as to the success of of great workshops,- and it turns out one of the “social meetings” to which that it was Arnold who started the men I dragged him, promising to show him who set these successes in order. The something of working-men's life. We Bishop of London would not thank me arrived too early. But the Secretary for intimating that he gained something told us that the garden was lighted up from being Arnold's successor ; but I am for drill, and that the working-men's sure Mr. Hughes would be pleased to battalion was drilling there. It was unthink that Arnold's spirit still lives and der the charge of Sergeant Reed, a medworks in his cellar-chapel.
al soldier from the Crimea. At that time The chapel is but one of the recitation- England was in one of her periodical rooms, – and, like all the others, is fitted fits of expecting an invasion. For some with the plainest unpainted tables and reason they will not call on every ablebenches. Two gentlemen read the les- bodied man to serve in a militia; - I sons and a short form of prayer, prepar- thought because they were afraid to arm ed, I think, by Mr. Maurice himself, — all their people, – though no Englishman and so adapted to the place and the oc- so explained it to me. They did, howcasion. Thirty or more of the students ever, call for volunteers from those classes were present.
of society which could afford to buy uniI dare not say that it was a piece of forms and obtain a practice-grounds three Working-Men's College good-fellowship, hundred yards in length." This includ- but, led either by that or by English ed, I should say, about eleven of the hospitality, one of the gentlemen who thirty-seven castes of English society. It officiated, to whom I had introduced my- intentionally left out those beneath, – as self with no privilege but that of a “fel- it did all Ireland. Mr. Hughes, howevlow-commoner” at the College, not only er, seized on it as an admirable chance showed me every courtesy there, but af- for his College, — its common feeling, terwards offered me every service which its gymnastics, – and many other "good could facilitate my objects in London. things,” looking down the future. In This fact is worth repeating, because it general, the drills which were going on shows, at least, what is possible in such all over England were sad things to me. an institution.
This idea of staking guineas against After an introduction so cordial, it may sous, when the contest with Napoleon did
come, - staking an English judge, for entered the service of a foreign power. instance, with his rifle, against some Certainly we avoided the guilt of felony, wretched conscript whom Napoleon had in England; for it is felony for an alien been drilling thoroughly, with his, seemed to take any station of trust or honor unand seems to me wretched policy. But der the Queen, - and when Mr. Bates - if it were to be done this way - of and Louis Napoleon were sworn in as course the best thing possible was to work special constables on the Chartists' day, as widely as you could in getting your they might both have been tried for felrecruits; and, — if England were too ony on the information of Fergus O'Conconservative to say,
“ We are twenty nor, and sent to some Old Bailey or eight millions, one-fifth fighting men,” other. None the less did we regret our too conservative to put rifles or muskets ignorance of the facings, and, after a into the hands of those five or six mil few minutes, sadly leave the field of lion fighters, — the next best thing was glory. to rank as many as you could in your My last visit to the Working-Men's handful of upper-class riflemen. How College was to attend one of Mr. Mauever, I offered my advice liberally to all rice's Sunday-evening classes, and this comers, and explained that at home I was was the only occasion when I ever apa soldier wben the Government wanted peared as a student. It was held at '
nine me, was registered somewhere, - and in the evening, -- out of the way, therecould be marched to San Juan, about fore, of any Church-service. There gathwhich General Harney was vaporing justered nearly twenty young men, who then, whenever the authorities chose. So seemed in most instances to be personit was that I and Chiron stood superior to ally strangers to each other. Mr. Mausee Sergeant Reed drill thirty-nine work- rice is so far an historical person that I ing-men. Mr. Hughes was on the terrace, have a right, I believe, to describe his teaching an awkward squad their facings. appearance. He must be about fifty
Sergeant Reed paraded his men, – years old now. He looks as if he had and wanted one or two more.
done more than fifty years' worth of work, and asked Mr. Hughes for them, - and - and yet does not look older than that, he in turn told us very civilly, that, if on the whole. His hair is growing white; “ we knew our facings,” we might fall his face shows traces of experience of in. Alas for the theory of the Land more sorts than one, but is very gentle sturm! Alas for the fame of the Mas and winning in its expression, both in sachusetts militia! Here are two of the his welcome, and in the vivid conversa“ one hundred and fifty-two thousand tion which is called his leoture. He sat eight hundred and fifty non-commission at a large table, and we gathered around ed officers, musicians, artificers, and pri- it with our Testaments and note-books. vates ” whom Massachusetts that year The subject was the fourth chapter of the registered at Washington, — two soldiers Epistle to the Hebrews, – the conversafor whom somebody, somewhere, has tion turning mostly, of course, on the two cartridge-boxes, two muskets, two “rest” which the people of God enter shoulder-straps, and the rest; - here is into. This is not the place for a report an opportunity for them to show the gen- of the exposition, at once completely detlemen of a foreign service how much vout and completely transcendental, by better we know our facings than they which this distinguished theologian lighttheirs, and, alas, the representative ed up this passage for that cluster of two do not know their facings at all! young men. But I may say something We declined the invitation as courte of the manner of one so well known and ously as it was offered. Perhaps we thus 80 widely honored among a “present escaped a prosecution under the Act of posterity” in America, for his works. 1819, when we came home, – for having He read the chapter through, — with a
running commentary at first, – blocking weaving the whole together, and making out, as it were, his ground notion of it. part illustrate part under the light of the This was the first ébauche of his criti- comment and illumination which it had cism; but you felt after its details with- received before, and so, when we read out quite finding them. In a word, the it with him for the fourth and last time, impression was precisely the uneasy im- it was no longer a string of beads, – a pression you feel after the first reading set of separate verses, — Jewish, antiof one of his sermons or lectures, — that quated, and fragmentary,– but one vivid there is a very grand general concep
illustration of the “ peace which passeth tion, but that you do not see how it is go- all understanding” into which the Chrising to "fay in ” in its respective parts. tian man may enter. One of the students intimated some such With this fortunate illustration and doubt regarding some of the opening exposition of the worth and work of the verses, - and there at once appeared Working-Men's College my connection enough to show how frank was the rela- with it closed. It seems to me a beautition, in that class at least, between the ful monument of the love and energy of teacher and the pupils. Then began the its founder. Perhaps we are all best real work and the real joy of the even- known through our friends, or, as the ing. Then on the background he had proverb says, “ by the company we keep." washed in before he began to put in his Let the reader know Mr. Maurice, then, middle-distance, and at last his fore- by remembering that he is the godfather ground, and, last of all, to light up the of Tennyson's son, whole by a set of flashes, which he had “ Come, when no graver cares annoy, reserved, unconsciously, to the close. He Godfather, come and see your boy,”dropped his forehead on his hand, work- that Charles Kingsley has a Frederic ed it nervously with his fingers, as if he Maurice among his children, — and that were resolved that what was within should Thomas Hughes has a Maurice also. The serve him, went over the whole chapter last was lost, untimely, from this world, in in much more detail a second time, held bathing in the Thames. The magnetism us all charged with his electricity, so that of such a man has united the group of we threw in this, that, or another ques- workers who have formed the Workingtion or difficulty, — till he fell back yet Men's College. We need not wonder a third time, and again went through it, that with such a spirit it succeeds.
EMANCIPATION IN RUSSIA.
Two great nations are peculiarly en- *ago, when the American debate began on titled to be considered modern in their the question of granting Writs of Assistgeneral character, though each is living ance to the revenue-officers of the crown. under ancient institutions. They are the The struggle between England and Amer. United States and Russia. Neither of ica was then commenced in the chief court these nations is a century old, regarded of the Colony of Massachusetts Bay, and as a power that largely affects affairs by the Declaration of Independence was but its action, and into the composition of the logical conclusion of the argument of each there enters a great variety of ele- James Otis; but that conclusion would ments. The United States may be said not have established anything, had it not to date from 1761, just one hundred years been confirmed by the inexorable logic
of cannon. The last resort of kings was she had of becoming Queen-Regnant of then on the side of the people, and gave France, Sophia-Augusta of Anhalt-Zerbst them the victory. The fifteen years that was elevated to the throne of the Czars passed between the time when James on the 9th of July, 1762; and a week Otis spoke in Boston and the time when later her miserable husband learned how John Adams spoke in Philadelphia be- true was the Italian dogma, that the dislong properly to our national history, tance between the prisons of princes and and should be so regarded. The grand- their graves is but short. Catharine II. son and biographer of John Adams says founded a new dynasty in Russia, and that Mr. Adams “ was attending the court gave to that country the peculiar charas a member of the bar, and heard, with acter which it has ever since borne, and enthusiastic admiration, the argument of which has enabled it on more than one Otis, the effect of which was to place him occasion to decide the fate of Europe, at the head of that race of orators, states- and therefore of the world. Important men, and patriots, by whose exertions the as were the labors of Peter the Great, it Revolution of American Independence does not appear to admit of a doubt that was achieved. This cause was unques- their force was wellnigh spent when Petionably the incipient struggle for that ter III. ascended the throne; and his independence. It was to Mr. Adams like conduct indicated the triumph of the old the oath of Hamilcar administered to Russian party and policy, as the necessaHannibal. It is doubtful whether Otis ry consequence of his violent feeling in himself, or any person of his auditory, behalf of German influences, ideas, and perceived or imagined the consequences practices. The Czarina, like those Rowhich were to flow from the principles mans who became more German than the developed in that argument. For al- Germans themselves, affected to be fanatthough, in substance, it was nothing more ically Russian in her sentiments and purthan the question upon the legality of poses, and so acquired the power to Eugeneral warrants,-a question by which, ropeanize the policy of her empire. She when afterward raised in England, in it was who definitely placed the face of Wilkes's case, Lord Camden himself was Russia to the West, and prepared the way taken by surprise, and gave at first an for the entrance of Russian armies into incorrect decision,- yet, in the hands of Italy and France, and for the partition James Otis, this question involved the of Poland, the ultimate effect of which whole system of the relations of author- promises to be the reunion of that counity and subjection between the British try under the sceptre of the Czar. It government and their colonies in Amer- was the seizure of so much of Poland by ica. It involved the principles of the Russia that fixed the latter's internationBritish Constitution, and the whole theo- al character; and it was Catharine II. ry of the social compact and the natural who destroyed Poland, and added so rights of mankind.”
much of its territory to the dominions of In the summer of 1762, about seven- the Czars. After the first partition had teen months after Otis bad made his been effected, it was no longer in Rusargument, the existence of modern Rus
sia's power to refrain from taking a leadsia began. Catharine II. then commen- ing part in European politics ; and when ced her wonderful reign, having dethron- her grandson, in 1814, was on the point ed and murdered her husband, Peter of making war on England, France, and III., the last of the sovereigns of Rus- Austria, rather than abandon the new sia who could make any pretensions to Polish spoil which he had torn from Napossession of the blood of the Roman- poleon I., he was but carrying out the offs. A minor German princess, who great policy of the Great Catharine. If originally had no more prospect of be- we look into the political literature of the coming Empress-Regnant of Russia than last century, we shall find that Peter I.'s
action had very little effect in the way tunately or unfortunately, — who shall of increasing the influence of Russia as yet undertake to decide which, conabroad. His eccentric conduct caused sidering as well European interests as him to be looked upon as a sort of royal Russian interests ? — the reign of Peter wild man of the woods, rather than as a III. was too short to be worth historical great reformer whose aim it was to ele- counting, and Elizabeth's real successor vate bis coantry to an equality with king was a foreigner, who not only was capadoms that had become old while Russia ble of comprehending Peter the Great's was ruled by barbarians of the remote ideas and purpose, but who had the adEast. He was “a self-made man" on a vantage of understanding that world the throne, and displayed all the oddities and civilization and vices of which Peter had want of breeding that usually mark the sought to engraft on the Russian stock. demeanor of persons whose youth has not The grand barbarian himself never could had the advantages that proceed from understand more than one-half of the work good examples and regular instruction. to which he devoted his life, as there was Of the courtly graces, and of those ac- nothing in his nature to which Occidental complishments which are most valued in thought could firmly fasten itself. He courts, he had as many as belong to an knew little of that the effects of which ill-conditioned baboon. A railway-car be so much admired. His mind was eson a cattle-train does not require more sentially Oriental in its cast, and the crecleaning, at the end of a long journey, ation of bis Northern capital was a piece than did a room in a palace after it had of work that might have been done by been occupied by Peter and his clever some Eastern despot; and in the precedspouse. Some of his best-authenticated ing century something like it had been acts could not be paralleled outside of a done by Shah Jehan, when he created piggery. The Prussian court, one hun- the new city of Delhi. In no European dred and sixty years since, was not a country could such an undertaking have very nice place, and its members were been attempted. It pleased Catharine II., by no means remarkable for refinement; in after-days, to say of Peter, that “he but they were shocked by the proceed- introduced European manners and Euings of the Czar and the Czarina, some ropean costumes amongst a European of which greatly resembled those which people”; but this was only a piece of are not uncommon in a very wild “wil- flattery to her subjects, whom she did so derness of monkeys." The last of Peter's much to Europeanize by making them descendants who reigned and ruled was believe that they were of Europe, and his daughter Elizabeth, who died in 1761, were destined to rule that continent. She and who was a most admirable represen it was who did what Peter planned, and tative of her admirable parents. Nei- by making use of Russians as her agents. ther the manners nor the morals of the Her statesmen, her generals, and her "faRussian court and the Russian empire vorites” were Russians; and it was after had improved during the twenty years her character and purposes became known that she gorerned ; and as to policy in that the rulers of Western Europe were government, she had none, and appar- forced to the conclusion that a change of ently she was incapable of comprehend- policy was inevitable. But for the occuring a political principle. Had her reign rence of the French Revolution, that Anbeen followed by that of some Russian glo- French Alliance which has been reprince of kindred character as well as garded as one of the prodigies of our prodof kindred blood, and had that reign igy-creating age would have been antiextended to twenty years' time, Russia cipated by more than sixty years. By would have fallen back to the position destroying Poland and humiliating Turshe had held in 1680, and never could key, Catharine forever settled the charbave become a European power.
For acter of the Russian Empire; and her