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since there is always a tendency to be gold of this kind? Could it not be arlieve that secrets can somehow be ob- ranged that the sea, at least, should tained by killing; but if he were not be inviolable, however deeply the earth assassinated, and if the secret leaked might be scarred and seamed to get the out, so that every Government in the great thing? True, such a Convention world knew how to obtain gold ex- might bring about security of markets ceedingly cheap, clearly the inventor in time of peace, though even then would become just as poor a man as there would always be privateers stealany one else who possessed merelying out with magnets, hoping to return gold, or paper redeemable by gold. He undiscovered. But in time of war, if might as well possess so much sand. four or five great nations were inIf the gold-supply of the world could volved? Then the ships would go out be multiplied to any extent with abso- for gold, not one by one, but by all lute ease, and multiplied at irregular the hundreds which the rich nations intervals, there would be no standard could afford. And to what end? To of prices. A quarter of wheat might establish, in that last fantastic resort, stand at fifty shillings one day and two only this,-the perpetual truth that not hundred and fifty shillings the next by some sudden, easy discovery can day: you might be asked half-a-crown any man, or any nation, ever become for lunch on Monday and a sovereign rich; but that by the calamitous upfor the same lunch on Saturday; you setting of an apparently perpetual could measure nothing until you dis- standard of prices, a new standard covered a new standard; the gold must be discovered; that the new standard would have disappeared. standard must involve, not mere in
But would it be allowed to disap- genuity, but stark labor of body; that pear? the question might be asked. "in the sweat of thy face shalt thou Would there not immediately be an in- eat bread" is the last test, the ultimate ternational Convention, called together standard, of men's riches. to make it illegal to collect supplies of The Spectator.
BOOKS AND AUTHORS.
It is impossible to deal adequately strength of character, of warm symwith such a volume as "The Letters of pathies and of a most lovable nature. William Stubbs Bishop of Oxford" of this man,-scholar, historian and within the limits of a brief notice. We bishop,--the volume gives us the most therefore reprint from the Independent intimate glimpses, for the letters are Review, elsewhere in this magazine, written with perfect unconsciousness Mr. Herbert Paul's review of the book and unconcern. They begin with the and estimate of the Bishop's character, beginning of his career as “a country under the title “Bishops and Histo- parson” at the middle of the last cenrians." But it is not primarily as a tury and come down to within a few bishop or an historian that the writer days of his death in April, 1901,-the of these delightful letters, which Mr. very last letter of all, brief and written W. H. Hutton has edited witn excel- with the stress of mortal illness upon lent discrimination, makes the most him, marked nevertheless by his invinabiding impression, but as a man, cible humor. The book is illustrated kind, witty, whimsical, of sincere and with several portraits and is furnished stalwart convictions, of simplicity and with a full index. E. P. Dutton & Co.
This misty hour, whose garrulous birds To pass Heaven's portal all unmeet will cease
She stood, the wanderer; Their fitful gossip as the west grows Howbeit, music clear and sweet pale,
There floated out to her, Breathes it not more of solace and release
And through the opening gate she Than sunsets golden as the Golden caught Fleece
The light ineffable-
The amaranth the Angel brought,
The disorganization of domestic ser- whose service they left on the slightest vice has so seriously affected home provocation. In some respects the posicomforts and social life in recent years, tion was worse then than it is now. that no apology is necessary for deal. We are told that “at the entrance of ing again with a subject which has the Law Courts and the Parliament, ale already attracted a considerable host of servants kept up such riotous amount of attention. Yet in review and licentious confusion that one would ing the domestic situation, the causes think there were no such things as of the evil and its possible cure, ex rule or distinction among us," while tremes are to be avoided. The grow- the custom of sending footmen to keep ing unpopularity of domestic service their masters' places at the play, durmust be taken into account as a new ing the first Act, resulted in such conelement in the situation by those who stant disorder in the galleries (where maintain that this is but a passing the servants retired and claimed adphase of no serious import; while those mission free on the arrival of their who foretell in present difficulties the masters), that they were eventually exextinction of the servant race, and a pelled from Drury Lane Theatre in further sign of the degeneracy of the 1737; not, however, until a riot had English people, will be interested to taken place in which about twentyhear of a domestic crisis of equal mag- five people were seriously injured, and nitude occurring more than a hundred which the presence of the Prince and and fifty years ago. Literature of that Princess of Wales was unable to reperiod abounds with instances of the strain, insolence of English servants, and of The evil was evidently a national their independence of their masters, one, of sufficient importance to attract the attention of foreign travellers. A quent Clubs and Taverns or to eat Portuguese who visited England in after their Masters and then reserve 1730, thus reviews the situation:
their Wages for other Occasions."
Hence, he observes, it arises As to the common and menial servants (of London) they have great that they are but in a lower Degree wages, are well kept and clothed, but what their Masters are and usually are notwithstanding, the plague of al- affect an imitation of their Manners. most every house in town. They form It is a common Humor among the themselves into societies, or rather con- retinue of People of quality when they federacies, contributing to the mainte- are in their Revels, that is, when they nance of each other when out of place, are out of their Masters' Sight, to asand if any of them cannot manage the sume in a humorous Way the Names family where they are entertained as and Titles of those whose Liveries they they please, immediately they give wear. notice they will be gone. There is no speaking to them, they are above cor In this respect we note a continuity rection.
of servant custom to the present day,
for in large houses, as we are all · In a letter to the Spectator of that
aware, the domestics still take pretime, Philo Britannicus writes:
cedence in the sacred precincts of the There is one thing in particular, housekeeper's room according to the which I wonder you have not touched social position of their masters and upon, and that is the general Corrup
mistresses. tion of Manners in the Servants of
But historians of that period attribGreat Britain. I am a Man that have
ute the evil then existing to other travelled and seen many Nations, but. ute have for seven Years past resided con- causes: notably to the attendance of stantly in London or within twenty servants upon their mistresses in the miles of it. In this Time I have con- great scenes of fashionable dissipation tracted a numerous Acquaintance
and to the immunity from arrest for among the best Sort of People, and
debt enjoyed by servants of Peers have hardly Found one of them happy
equally with their masters, and above in their Servants. This is a matter of great Astonishment to Foreigners and
all to the system of Vales then preall such as have visited Foreign Coun- vailing in England. This system had tries, especially since we cannot but ob- in those days reached exaggerated serve that there is no Part of the World
dimensions, and was a severe tax on where Servants have those Privileges
those of slender means who, as well and Advantages as in England. They
as the more opulent, were expected to have nowhere else such plentiful Diet,
lavish handsome gifts on the servants large Wages or indulgent Liberty. There is no place where they labor of their host in attendance upon them less, and yet where they are so little at table. It is said that a foreigner of respectful, more wasteful, more negli distinction would spend as much as gent, or where they so frequently ten guineas in this way in one evenchange their Masters.
ing, and that "no feature of English The writer concludes the letter by life seemed more revolting to foreignasking for "observations that we mayers than an English entertainment, know how to treat these Rogues.” when the guests, often under the eyes The Editor in his reply observes that of the host, passed from the drawinghis correspondent's complaints "run room through a double row of serwholly upon Men Servants" and traces vants, each one of them expecting and the evil to "the Custom of giving receiving his fee.” It is this custom, Board Wages, which leads them to fre- abolished about the middle of the eighteenth century, which is of special in- earlier times. The difficulties of well terest to the student of the servant ordering a household are evident when problem, as producing a curious simi- work must be carried out according to larity in the position then and now. servants' theories rather than the misFor, as writers of that time attribute tresses' views, and when servants will the serious disorganization then exist leave on the merest pretext not with ing, partly to social influences, but the legitimate object of bettering their chiefly to this system of Vales, which position but because a place is dull or rendered servants absolutely indepen- they require a change. The expedent of their masters, so now it is rec- riences of those wishing to set up an ognized that apart from various phases English establishment in these days of the moment which probably accen- most clearly illustrates the domestic tuate the evil, the root trouble of the difficulty. Interviews in which the mispresent domestic crisis is found in the tress is far more interviewed than in. unpopularity of domestic service and terviewing, and inquiries on the part the consequent deficiency in the re- of applicants for the situation as to quired number of servants. These are numbers in family, servants kept and thus again rendered independent of visitors allowed, clearly show there are their masters, and are enabled practi- more situations to fill than there are cally to command the situation and to servants to fill them. Questions from dictate terms to their employers. The the lady's maid as to the ultimate destiincentive to earn a good character is nation of the wardrobe; minute inweakened, the folly of leaving a good quiries of the housemaid as to Sunday situation for insufficient reasons is not and week-day outings, accompanied clearly perceived, when there is the by a distinct proviso against opening consciousness that, owing to the fact the door in the butler's absence, prove that the supply does not equal the de. that the final decision whether the girl mand, another situation can always be enters the situation rests rather with obtained. And the effects are seen in her than with the mistress, while the other ways. Incompetent servants terms dictated by kitchen maid and and those with indifferent characters footman, where no scullery maid or can now command situations not open hall boy is kept, are only credible when to them in days of greater competition, it is remembered that this class of serA mistress is forced to condone all vant is almost impossible to procure. but the most serious offences, aware Till at length, harassed by cross-examthat while the servants she parts with ination when any duty not quite confor inefficiency will immediately secure genial to the candidate leads to the other and perhaps better situations, she frank avowal the situation will not may herself change considerably for suit, higher wages are given than the the worse. Here again there is a nota- mistress can well afford, greater liberty ble likeness in the position in earlier than she considers advisable, and more and later days. Gonzales, the Portu- help than is necessary as the only way guese traveller previously quoted, of closing the matter. Nor is this alwrites: “It is a common saying If my ways a final settlement. At the exservant ben't a thief, or if he be but piration of the fortnight, as likely as honest, I can bear with other things, not the butler wishes to leave, because and indeed it is very rare to meet in the place is not quite what he exLondon with an honest servant." pected; or the lady's maid, because she