Page images
PDF
EPUB

not be able to contribute any such apparel and adornment, would proproportion to the necessities of the vide its Government with a large State, until the population amounts portion of the means necessary to to three or four times its present preserve its financial credit. But numbers. The Internal Revenue unluckily the public mind of ought to be a prolific source of America knows little of economic wealth to the Federal Government, science. To the mass of Ameriand might be made so, if the people cans, well educated as they are supthought it a shame and a sin to posed to be, Adam Smith and his cheat the State ; and if the revenue philosophy are as unfamiliar as the

officers were appointed for life, or Koran. The people believe in what | during good behaviour, and were they call the American system, and

not nominated, as they are, accord- they are robbed to their hearts’ ing to the present system, for poli- content by the “shoddy aristocrats," tical services, for the most part who manufacture bad cutlery, bad corrupt, liable to removal at any crockery, bad glass, bad cotton time, and certain of removal four goods, bad silks, bad woollen cloths, years after appointment, unless the bad everything, and charge the re-election of an actual President full price of the good European in the meanwhile should renew articles, duty paid in gold included. their lease of their ill-paid offices, Perhapsa“ heaven-born financier' and leave them free to make their may yet appear in America-per

pile” — i.e., their fortunes — by haps if the great man come he may peculation and the receipt of bribes be powerful enough to elbow bis from evildoers. The whisky ques- way through the dense obstructions tion is one in point. A large that will be certain to impede his revenue ought to be, but is not, progress to the supreme placederived from this source, not be- perhaps the corrupt knaves and cause less whisky is distilled or scheming scoundrels raised into drunk than there was before the political importance and position article was taxed, but because there by the operation of manhood sufis an organised system at which frage will stand out of the way the excise officers shut their eyes, to let him pass — perhaps the light or wink, for a consideration to of his genius will irradiate the dark defraud the Government. There places of Congress and the local remains only the Customs duties legislatures - perhaps experience as a really prolific source of re- and heavy suffering will prepare venue. Were the Federal Govern- the people to receive him and lisment bold enough to reform this ten to his teachings — perhaps be branch of its fiscal system, to will have courage to tell the whole cease listening to the clamour of truth-perhaps his truth, if told, the native manufacturers and coal- will convince the people to whom owners for protection against Eu- it is addressed-perhaps the polirope, and more especially against ticians of the South, accustomed to Great Britain, and were it to im- rule, and more skilful in diplomatic pose a reasonably low scale of and personal intrigue than the duties upon iron and steel goods, Northerners, will not for many upon textile fabrics, and all the years to come be enabled to take ingenious art and manufactures of that part in the Government to Europe, not for the sake of pro- which their talents entitle themtection, but solely and wholly for and, last possibility of all, perbaps revenue—there can be little doubt this supposed and greatly-to-bethat the people of a country natu- desired financier, who shall have rally so rich as the United States, the knowledge and the will to and with such expensive and luxuri- educe order out of chaos, may be ous tastes in the matter of personal as fortunate as he ought to be. These perhapses are perhaps a elected to the Presidency, and with little too numerous ; but unless him a Congress that shares his opinthey all happen to realise them- ions and will give him a strong selves and come true in the person working majority ;-the debt of the of one man, having power and au- whole American Union, whether of thority to do as he wills, it is diffi- the Federal Government, or the cult to see how the American Union several States that compose it, may is to pay its debt if the present anti- be rendered as secure as the debt of Southern and violent faction that Great Britain. Even at the present paralyses the constitutional action time, if the dominant faction would of the President retain its ascend- cease its threats of confiscation of ancy in Congress. Mr M'Culloch, Southern estates, and its suggestions the present Secretary of the Trea- for parcelling them out among the sury, knows his business; but there negroes, the finances of the Union is not a people, high or low, to would immediately assume a more second his enlightened efforts for favourable aspect. Were the Souththe preservation of the national ern planters and others but certain credit. The high are powerless that they might call their lands their and few, and the low are prejudiced, own, and were the capitalists of the ignorant, and powerful; and the Northern States and of Europe samost fertile part of the country tisfied that no act of confiscation that could pay its full, or more than would be attempted, the planters its full share of the public burdens, might with little difficulty borrow is almost as waste as a wilderness the necessary money to recommence

-its cotton, its rice, its sugar, the cultivation of their lands; and and its tobacco, that added so in two years the cotton alone, which largely to its own wealth and that with a little judicious aid they might of the world, are scarcely produced produce, would enable them to in exportable quantities. The lighten the burdens of the North curse of black pauperism and pro- as well as their own, and silence, letairism lies upon the land; and perhaps for ever, the ominous whisthe North has to pay for the luxury pers of repudiation which are now of conquest after the luxury has heard on every side. But if Northbeen enjoyed and found to be ern fear of Southern supremacy in worthless.

the councils of the restored Union The test, however, of the great should adjourn indefinitely that real question of the debt will be the union of interest and feeling withPresidential election of November out which a merely political union 1868. If by that time the animosi. maintained by the bayonet is worse ties engendered by the war shall than useless, the debt will continue have cooled down or been obliter- to be a debatable question, until the ated ; if the Conservative feeling very discussions for and against its of the Northern people shall have repudiation will demoralise the found full play; if they shall resolve whole country. The prospect at to bold out the right hand of good- present is not as bright as it might fellowship to the South, and accept, be; but in a young country, and as readily as the South has accepted among a hopeful people, a year may defeat, the fact that the Union make a wondrous difference. In cannot be restored unless the rights any case, the moral of the great of the Southern people are restored story of the American Civil War along with it; and if a popular can- will remain palpable to all underdidate, strong in his adherence to standings both in the Old World the form and spirit of the constitu- and in the New—that neither kings tion, and with no ill-will to vent nor multitudes can engage in the against “rebels”—such a man, for bloody sport of war without takinstance, as General Sherman, or, ing the consequences and paying after him, General Grant-shall be the piper.

THE EASTER TRIP OF TWO OCHLOPHOBISTS. *

BY ONE OF THEMSELVES.

PREFACE.

I HAVE read so many books of travels lately, and have found them so amusing and instructive, that I cannot resist the temptation of endeavouring to sketch the fortnight which I spent under very peculiar circumstances last month. The course of reading through which I have been has, I am afraid, a little affected my style, which naturally is a simple, unaffected, and pleasing one.

I must not forget to own the obligations I am under to Granville, who was good enough to write the greater part of this account.

HENRY STUART. LONDON, 14th May.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

+ Indicates the buffets where the ochlophobists refreshed themselves.
* The place where the ochlophobists recognised one another.
Towns in capital letters, “LIEGE,” denote the places where the ochlophobists

stayed to have their clothes washed.
Towns printed in italics, “ Spa," indicate that the ochlophobists changed cir-

cular notes there.

[blocks in formation]

Any observant person who took the train which left Charing Cross the trouble to look, on the eleventh at — A.M., might have seen me. I day of April, into the fifth carriage of was sitting with my feet upon the

* Not a fossil, but belonging to the recent period—“ a hater of drums, squashes, or parties” –όχλος, φοβος.

66

opposite seat, and a newspaper half ceivable reason for remembering cut was resting upon my knees. I him, is a bore. I think the reason am very fond of reflection, and on I left London was that there were that particular occasion I was re- so many bores, and perhaps I hoped flecting—firstly, why the- I had after a fortnight some of them might left London ; and secondly, why I have forgotten me. was going abroad; and thirdly, whe- Will you lend me the 'Times,' ther I had taken a sufficient num- sir ?” and I discovered a foolishber of pairs of boots with me. I looking young man asking me for enjoyed my attitude. I know very my means of salvation-i. e., the few so pleasant—that perfect ease newspaper. He had a white hat which is the concomitant of such on-nobody but a thoroughly ima horizontal position as I have pudent man can wear a white hat tried to describe-that disregard of in April—a muddy complexion, and things sublunary, and that subjec- a vacillating grin. I gave him the tive selfishness which is so often to paper, although I felt that by doing be found in our characters ; for so I was opening out an indefinite selfishness is certainly a by no means field for his remarks. As I looked rare condition—mais revenons à nos at his self-contented features, I bemoutons. There were others in the gan to have horrible misgivings as same carriage, and I felt painfully to having seen him only a few days certain that sooner or later I should before at Lady A.'s—he was just be obliged to answer something to the sort of man to remember havthem. An oldish man of between ing met me there-probably bumpsixty and seventy was engaged in ed me, or upset my plate at supper; tearing to pieces some tough ham- and what if he intended to také sandwiches, which were being pro- precisely the same direction as myduced by his daughter from a dirty self, and I should find him every basket.

morning and every evening at the “Will you have another ?table-d’hôte? Yes, when he had

"Thanks," was the answer, and finished the account of the last I shuddered. I am naturally shy, steeple-chase, he would introduce and I could not conceive how any- himself. I once knew a woman body could eat in a railway carriage, who, wanting to get people to go to 80 I shuddered.

her ball, went up to somebody in “ You are cold, sir."

the street, and said, “I think I It had come at last, and I was have met you in church.” I reobliged to make an observation. collected, too, I had been at my den

“I am," I answered; and thrust- tist's lately, and that I was kept waiting the newspaper over my head, I ing with another man for a quarter feigned sleep to avoid conversation. of an hour-was it he ? My reflecWhat a strange love, it appears to tions were disturbed by an old wome, to be perpetually wishing to man who put the point of her ummake new acquaintances, as if one's brella upon my neighbour's foot, present ones did not bore one suf- and said, “Dear me, how awkward ficiently! I felt I agreed with the these carriages are! there's no room man who, on being asked by his for anything. I tell my husband host whether he would go and see every day to write to the Times' Stonehenge, replied, " Thanks, but to have them made bigger -- it's I don't wish to know any more very odd—they don't care. new people.” The man who wishes This was no relief ; I was evito be remembered after the cessa- dently next to some great statestion of an acquaintance for a year man's wife. Would she be next to is a bore-the man who introduces me at the table-d'hôte every day himself after he has grown a beard, also ? The first time I went abroad, and when really there is no con- being, as I have said before, very

shy, I dined in my bedroom ; but “I hear that there is a good deal as it was au cinquième, I outraged of small-pox at Calais.” my feelings in a few days, and came “Ah, I'm glad we go to Boulogne down-stairs.

- there is only half an hour more “I beg your pardon," said the sea; and it don't much matter when old lady, as her dressing-box fell one's very sick.” upon my hat. “It's very odd, I I felt keenly for thestatesman, and thought it was safe. You see, some hoped that he was sick for his own people go abroad with really so lit- sake. The question, however, was tle luggage ; but my husband likes settled. I could go to Calais in to see me bien mise, and I am al- peace, and, after all, it was not likeways very careful in consulting his ly that I should have such fellowtastes."

travellers again. It just occurred Does he like you to travel ?” I to me that the safest plan to have said.

adopted would have been to go to “Oh, yes, very much, and always some quiet hotel in London, near alone in these days one need not Regent's Park. I should have seen be afraid.”

nobody, but then I should not have “You never need be,” I replied, gone abroad. I think a great and tried to go to sleep, but I could deal besides reflecting, and I think not, and I spent my time vainly that a shy man has no carrière conjecturing how I could avoid my south of Regent's Park. Perhaps present companions. At any rate, Tyburnia might support one or two. I would find out where they were There don't seem to be many going, and at least take a different knockers (no shy man could or ever route. He of the muddy com- will be able to knock at a door), plexion," as I called him, had just but then it looks hopelessly dull, finished my paper. I seized the and I know one or two extraordinopportunity and said, "The hotels ary bores who live there ; besides will be very full in Paris, I am which, country people come up to afraid.”

the Paddington Hotel. “Yes, indeed; but then I know “ Here you are, sir.' Paris well-an old friend of mine. I was at Dover. The sea has a I know all the hotel - keepers great charm about it—that is to say, well."

regarded from the Lucretian point "I should think so," I inwardly of view. It is pleasant to see passaid.

sengers emerge on a stormy day“You are going there too? I to see them staggering with diffithink I remember your face.” (The culty into the station, and turn a brute would have recognised his deaf ear to the solicitations of the bisaïeul in a swimming-bath.) “I waiters, who would fain have them hope we shall meet.”

believe that roast beef and pale ale Yes, indeed.” That was set- will restore them to that equanimtled. I certainly should not go to ity which they have lost; then I Paris. The next thing to do was amuse myself by reflecting upon to find out where she of the dress- the origin of sea-sickness, its powers, ing-case, as I called her, was going, its-; but I do not reflect in the and this I determined to do in- same way, nor am I equally amused, directly.

as a passenger.

CHAPTER II.-THE STEAMER.

“ Your luggage is registered, sir?

“No, certainly it is not.”

Registered luggage conforms to Mrs Bennet's definition of entailed property-once registered,

« PreviousContinue »