« السابقةمتابعة »
ON HISTORY. matter is, to ascertain not what men have liberty to do, What is the grand subject of but what they actually accomplish, with or without liberty. all history? A recent writer, of History should be a record of the manner in which men some repute, undertakes to inform have fulfilled their duties, and employed or misemployed us, and he does so in the follow- their powers; not of the legal sanctions with which they ing words :
have secured their liberties, but of the manner in which * The great subject of all history they have used such liberties as they possessed. is the civil and religious liberties of In countries where there is only one creed, as in the mankind; for on these depend their West of Europe, during the middle ages, the question of intelligence, their prosperity, their religious liberty vanishes altogether; and the question of happiness, private and public.”* The notion expressed in the of the earth which are not adapted for representative
civil liberty very much gets out of sight in those portions above sentences is by no means institutions. Indeed, if we were to adopt Mr. Smyth's an uncommon one; but is it true? theory, we might almost expunge the history of the middle It would seem to be a sufficient
ages from our books of history. Religious liberty we have answer to this question to say, already disposed of. Neither does civil liberty, in the sense that, if it be true, the greater part in which it is now understood, make much figure in those of the history of the world is a times. In the last two centuries the struggles for civil mere and naked blank. It
liberty have been struggles to amend the constitution, cludes from the domain of history to pass new laws, to heap up new checks against the almost everything that makes sovereign power, to enlarge the franchise. In the middle history worth reading. “Re
age, the constitution, such as it was, was fixed by custom ligious liberty, indeed!” There and tradition, and the civil struggles of those times were to was, as every school-boy knows, considerable religious liberty enforce the due and impartial administration of the laws. throughout the Roman empire during the reign of Augustus. Politics, in our sense of the word, there were none; and All religions then known in Rome were tolerated, struggles for grand principles of government make no and every man was at liberty, under that rule, to figure in those Catholic ages; and the parties of Whig and worship whom he liked, what he liked, how he liked, and Tory, Cavalier and Roundhead, had not as yet got even when he liked. Heroes and Emperors, devils, nonen- into the womb of time. So that, to take Mr. Symth's tities, and beasts, stocks and stones, sun, moon, and stars, version of bistory, the middle ages, in which were laid every production of the animal, vegetable, and mineral the foundation of everything that we now possess, in kingdom-all were left free to the worship of man. Nay, religion, civil polity, social organization, art, literature, and so long as the true worshippers did not interfere with the science-are utterly unworthy of the notice of a rational man. religious liberty of other people, and tell the world that it must not worship idols and evil beings, even God might be
Civil and religious liberty are, at the best, a sort of worshipped without molestation. At last, however, Christi- scaffolding placed round the edifice to enable men to work anity sprung up, and put an end to this beautiful system of upon it. In the Catholic times there was a scaffolding, religious liberty, by telling everybody that the notions which, whether it was the best or not the best, was geneon which it was based were altogether false - that men rally thought good enough, and the whole energies of might not worship devils—that there was but one worship society were, therefore, left at liberty to use the trowel and acceptable to God; that all other modes of worship drew mortar, and to get on with their substantial work. Now, down upon the foolish worshippers God's wrath in this we are all consuming, our energies in quarrels about the world and everlasting punishment in the next; and it scaffolding, the length of the poles, the true method of then proceeded to set forth this one, exclusive, true tying the ropes, and the proper elevation of the ladders. religion, for the edification of all and everybody that chose When these important questions are all settled, we suppose to listen. Certainly, the thing that strikes us in this we shall once more take to the trowel again, after the transaction, the most important that ever was transacted in fashion of the old times. But, at any rate, while this the world, is not the advancement of religious liberty. scaffold-controversy is going on, let us clearly under. What strikes most persons as the leading fact in this stand that it is a scaffold-controversy, and let no quack matter is, the advancement of truth; the putting
out of the writers deceive us, in their efforts to convince us, that way a false worship and an impure morality. The true the true history of Westminster Abbey is to be sought worship, and the pure morality struggle for eighteen in the perishable logs of wood upon which the masons hundred years to establish themselves all over the world; mounted, in order to raise the stones of which that glorious towards the end of that time, and when religion has very
structure was built. nearly gone out from the affections of men, quite a subor
The truth is, that in the speculations of modern writers, dinate question of arrangement, calling itself "religious we are continually bored with this everlasting confusion of “liberty,” starts up, and declares that all the religious stir in the relative importance of the means and the ends. How the world has been made for it; that the great effort of all many different meanings do different persons attach to the past times, so far as it has had any worth in it
, has been to words,“ the advancement of society?” With some this secure for men the right to be in the wrong with impunity; phrase means, the increase of knowledge; with some, the and to provide acts of indemnity for those who Protest increase of wealth ; with some, the general diffusion of against Christ and Dissent from the Apostles. Depend wealth; with some, the extension of foreign trade; with upon it, Mr. Smyth, this mighty question of religious liberty, some, the extension of colonies; with some, the progress however just it may be, is but a puny accident in the history of liberty; with some, the improvement of mechanical of the world after all. In religious matters, the great thing science; with some, the prosperity of the fine arts; with which history has to tell us, is not the amount of liberty some, the wonderfully increasing ingenuity displayed in the which whimsical people enjoyed to vote against the Almighty, kitchen department; with some, the equally wonderful but the diffusion, and heartfelt acceptance, and belief of augmentation of the decorum of society. "Nay, some the truths, which Almighty God would have us believe. reasoners go so far as to say, that all the arrangements and
Again, in civil matters, the important question for history organization of society have, as their final end and aim, “the to resolve is, not how much civil liberty men have got, bringing of twelve men into a box," and there swearing what constitutions, what franchises, what legal checks and them in by proper officers for a jury. controls on the royal authority, but what amount of good
Would it not, however, be well to understand, once for does their government actively perform on them. In a word, all, that all these things are but means to a far higher end; civil and religious liberty and their history, taken alone, that not one of them, nor all of them together, have any are as barren as the east wind. In all history the great primary or absolute value whatever ; that their sole value
is to be measured by their tendency to secure a far more * Smyth's Lectures on Modern History.
important result; and that it is just possible for them
all to co-exist, in the highest state of prosperity, without | infancy, the police badly organized, and but little outward tending or doing anything to promote the cause for which restraint placed upon the power of the powerful to commit alone they have their being.
outrage; and when they see, as the natural result of all St. Simeon Stylites had, we imagine, po great stock this, that the powerful, being left to their own wills, of mere human “knowledge;" his “wealth ” consisted in did too often commit cruel outrages, and pass unpunished; beggary and famine, and seems to have been very little on they forthwith console themselves with the reflection, that the “increase” during the whole course of his life. His we, in our enlightened times, never hear of such monstrous “liberty” consisted, for the most part, in fasting and wickedness. And thus do they, unintentionally, make the watching on his lone pillar in the desert, with the oc- virtue of this age consist rather in the goodness of its casional luxury superadded of an iron chain round his leg, police than in the strength of its virtue; in the happy to make him fast. In “mechanical science,” he seems to mechanical impossibility of committing crime with imhave been enough of an adept to know how to rear a ladder punity, rather than on the heroic inward piety restraining against a high column. The only “fine art” he studied, men from the desire even of doing wrong. For, if these with much attention, was the art of praying. His men were to look below the surface, if they were to behold kitchen” was lamentably unfurnished.
“ de- the little evidence now given, on any side, of burning and “corum,” we are sadly afraid he was an Eastern sans- heroic piety, if they were to consider the utter absence culotte. And no twelve men, in a jury-box, ever gave him of heavenly enthusiasm that now prevails, and the a good deliverance from the troubles and persecutions miserable shackles of decorum within which every nobler
But this poor shepherd's son, with all these aspiration of the soul is now bound down and crippled sad deficiencies, contrived, it is commonly supposed, to by the bondage ; and if, turning the picture, they would attain the great goal of his earthly pilgrimage--the blessed open their eyes to the multitude of unacted thoughts of vision of God. Without any one of the signs of our iniquity that abound everywhere, but are not written in modern enlightenment and advancement, he contrived to any book-the covetousness that would rob, if it were not earn an income, richer and more lasting than the whole for the treadmill—the impiety that has banished God clean accumulated interest of all the perpetual annuities in out of the heart, but does not blaspheme, because, alas ! it the world—a happy eternity in heaven. This was the end does not think enough of God to believe him worth for which God made him to live, and for which he lived. blaspheming—the lust that dare not become public adultery, Now, suppose a nation of such men, or of men not perhaps for fear of worldly respects—the hatred that would become imitating him altogether, but living in voluntary poverty, cruelty and torture, if all outward barriers were removed poor, mean, miserable outcasts—but all saints, and going and would but recollect for a moment, that all these desires to heaven. Compare such a nation with a nation of in the heart, and waiting only for an opportunity to worldlings and unbelievers, rich in art, in commerce, in act them, are almost, if not quite, as great sins as they railways, in looms, in kitchens, in furniture, in all the would be if acted; if the modern writers we are speaking luxury that ministers to every inward and outward sense. of, would consider all these things, they would, methinks, History, lying, perfidious, modern history, which judges pass a very different verdict. For, indeed, when we open not, and makes no attempt to judge, according to the laws the records of the Middle Age, we see a very different of God and the maxims of the church, must pronounce the scene from that which now surrounds us. We behold former nation despicable and degraded, the latter honour- great passions for good and for evil, acting to the full able and worthy of all imitation.
extent of their hidden power, unchecked and uncontrolled. But, indeed, the same rule must really be applied to We behold great virtues and great vices enacted on the nations as to individuals, and the trustworthy historian same stage, with an almost unlimited development. We must pronounce his judgment of nations, not according to behold no such fear of men, as now tames and dwarfs us, the signs of worldly greatness, but according to the appear- and makes us contemptible ; but the saint and the ruffian, ances of inward holiness. It was so done in Catholic equally true to their own natures, making their acts a times, even periods of great degeneracy, and by laymen perfect copy of their thoughts, and the Angels of light and of no great pretensions to sanctity. What modern his- darkness fighting out hand to hand the everlasting conflict torian but would be ashamed to be known as the author of of good and evil, without any pretence of concealment that sentence of Philip de Comines ?-in which, having from “ deference to the usages of good society.” Those described the great wealth, the inordinate luxury, and the were days of gigantic virtue and gigantic vice; they were magnificent prosperity of the subjects of the house of not like these effeminate emasculated times, days in which Burgundy, before the evil days which were to come upon neither vice nor virtue dare to act themselves, but have them, through the ambition of their later princes, be sums retired into the inmost recesses of the heart, to remain the whole matter up thus :-“To be slıort; the subjects of unacted, and have left the stage for the grisly phantom “this house thought at that time no Prince able to withstand of Decorum, the most cunning emissary of hell that ever “them, at the least none too mighty for them; but at this seduced souls to the perdition of the bottomless pit. It “present I know no country in the world so miserable requires a strong stomach to read of the ways of men, when “ and desolate as theirs : and I doubt me the sins they pure Christianity flourished. The penances of the Saints “committed in their prosperity cause them to suffer this make them sick-a modern writer confesses as much-and “ adversity, because they acknowledged not all these gifts make it almost too great a penance to read their lives. “and benefits to proceed from God, who disposed and Their holiness, proceeding from the inspiration of a super“bestowed them as to His heavenly wisdom seemeth best.” natural sense, is judged extravagant and inconsistent with Of a truth, this is the philosophy of a very different age from the rules of our commercial common sense. Their reliance ours. In our days, the wealth, magnificence, and luxury of on God, would be now punished with all the severity of the a nation, are thought to be sure signs of its continued vagrant laws, with imprisonment, with whipping, and the and lasting prosperity. In the better days of Catholicism, treadmill. And, to crown all, the wickedness of the evil they were thought to be dangers, and forerunners of ruin, men amongst them is overrated; because, contrary to the because they tempted men into a forgetfulness of God and mind of our Saviour, people persist in measuring crimes by a violation of His commandments.
the outward act, and not by the detestable malignity which It is because we have thus completely shut our eyes engenders and gives them life. For us, in our little to the criterion of the real prosperity of a state, that most humble notices of our countrymen and ancestors in the modern writers make such miserable mistakes in their faith-we must adopt a very different rule, if we would judgments of the Middle Age. Even when they attempt hope for profit or even for amusement. We must-hard anything like a moral judgment on the character of a task-grapple boldly with both the virtues and the vices of particular period, they can penetrate no deeper than the our progenitors. Before the former, we must bow down magistrate's police-sheet and tables of punishable offences. with reverential homage, as before the piety of men, whose When they look back into the old times, and find the shoes we are not worthy to unloose. The latter, we most central authority of the state not yet grown up into abhor and execrate with all our souls, thanking God, at the strength, habits of obedience to its mandates yet in their same time, that the perpetrators of them were not worse
than all, in being hypocrites and smoothfaced pretenders to decorum and an outward respectability, which they possessed not, their hearts all the while slavish, hollow, and rotten. If we will consent to judge the old times in this spirit, that is to say, in judging them to reverse almost every maxim now current among men in this island, we may at last manage to study their history with some little hope of profit.
THE PILGRIMS. 'Twas in the shire of Hereford,
Not far from the banks of Wye,
To a village hostelry :
With his busy, cheerful air
And his good old English fare.
They both appeared intent, And for the sexton of the place
In eager haste they sent; And, as the sexton tarried long,
Those two walked forth alone, Where the churchyard trees waved mournfully
O'er many a mouldering stone.
With an eye of fiery pride,
And of the imperial stride;
His full-toned voice did sound
Heard in a cave profound.
With such a form and face
And Grecian art to trace;
His image glorified
By a mortal brother's side.
His cap with reverence meet,
So thrilling 'twas, and sweet.
If haply you might know
Many a long year ago ?
Who in these parts abode,
Pursued his peaceful road
The bigots of the time
Though guiltless of a crime.”
The stone above his clay;
His memory to this day !
(Who had it from their sires) The piteous story of his end,
Beside their Christmas fires. “ They took him up to London town,
And long they kept him there,
Against his life to swear;
And work his body woe,
On foot they made him go.
They raised a gibbet high,
This old man was to die;
But nothing shook his courage stout,
His conscience being free,
With a frank and hearty glee.
At some remembered door,
As he was wont of yore;
Preserves each ancient type,
Calls it his Kemble-Pipe.
As round him they did throng;
For that anhallowed wrong.
• Honest friend Anthony !
And no discourtesy;
'Tis time for me to pause,
Than in my Master's cause,
Upon a rock doth stand,
Made this a Christian land!'
And that was popish rant,
“ Am a true Protestant:
Or creed the difference lies)
The tears into my eyes!”
“ O lead us to the place,
Are of his name and race;
Which such a memory brings,
The blood of twenty kings !
Is this the old grey-stone ?
And leave us here alone!-
Which modern schools impart,
The homage of the heart!”
Was he, and high his fame;
Was she that with him came;
Their genius did control
A mighty nation's soul !
His child Cordelia pressed,
His mother to his breast,
With pure and eloquent breath,
On Katharine's saintly death-
Which Shakspere's art endears,
The fount of sacred tears-
When, 'mid the deepening gloom,
ALPHA. * Father Kemble suffered martyrdom at Wigmarsh, near Hereford, in the year 1679, and was buried in the church-yard of Welsh Newton. The incident of the pilgrimage is mentioned in Campbell's “Life of Mrs. Siddons.”
PURGATORY AND Repentance. Trithemius, in his chro- | the sentence of the reprobate ! of these twelve, one was a friar nicle of Hirschau, relates the following occurrence which took of the rule of St. Francis, the other a poor beggar and lepar, place in 1321. " Godfrid was a dyer in the town of Bruchsall, and these two passed straight to heaven, and the other ten had in the diocese of Spires, a frequenter of drinking-houses, and to pass first through purgatory. Lo! all that I have said is a singer of light songs, scurrilous, addicted to cups and tables, still only uttered in the way of similitudes, for I saw nothing gesticulations and rhythmes, and one who never thought about with my carnal eyes, but remote from all senses, without a saving his soul. Falling sick, he had great remorse and pro- voice or any similitude, in a moment I spiritually saw and found sorrow; so he sent for a priest, to whom he made a de- heard all. And now, lord, that I have obeyed you, and spoken, vout confession, received the communion, promising aloud to spare me and yourself from henceforth, for I will speak of it do penance if God should spare him. Relapsing into silence no more to you or to any one. Endeavour to lead the people in about an hour after, he seemed to expire--this was about to repent, and preach to them what you think useful.' From seven o'clock in the evening, on the 25th of May. As the that time, Godfrid lived twelve years in such austerity of life, night was advancing, they would not bury him till the next that no one could doubt but that he had scen greater than day; so during that night the neighbours assembled and sat what he said. No one ever after saw him smile, or joyous, or round his body, which was placed on a bier, and talked vari- sleeping, or idle ; no word useless or idle ever passed his lips ously about the fate of his soul. At two o'clock in the morn- more; no one saw him angry or impatient, or heard him mur. ing he sat up, and said, "O God, how just and hidden are thy mur against any one, or speak evil of those by whom he was judgments! Blessed be thy name, who hath been merciful to injured, and they were many: winter and summer he went me penitent.' All in an instant fied; some through the win. barefoot, in one grey vest always clad ; he never shaved his dow, as the door was too small, others over the people's heads, beard, he daily fasted save on Sunday, neither ate fish nor in short, as they could. Godfrid rose, went into the garden flesh nor tasted wine : injured or derided, always was he silent, and knelt down, where he was found still kneeling at sunrise. and however injured never did he change his countenance. The crowds gathered round, and the priest, who had heard his with the labour of his hands he supported his wife and confession, came and said, Godfrid, how is it with you?' but children; he was always employed constantly in prayer; he he, making the cross on his mouth, said • wehe ! O wehe!' slept four hours at night; daily before the crucifix he knelt and thus groaning, walked to the church and entered, followed and gave himself stripes, seven times he repeated the Pater, by the priest and all the people. There he fell prone on the and seven times kissed the earth in form of a cross; he often pavement before the altar, with arms extended in a cross, and confessed, and daily heard mass. On feast days, he either remained two hours. Then rising up, he said to the priest, prayed alone in his chamber with the door shut, or with• Lord, what doth this people want?" • They wish to know,' drawing into a neighbouring grove he walked alone with God. replied the priest, whether you were really dead, or where he slept on the naked ground and had a stone for his pillow; you were, or how you have come back to life.? To whom he and so lived till his death, when he was buried in the parish replied, there is a time for speaking, and a time for silence : church before the altar of St. George.” [Ad. an. 1321.] For let them go home, for they will hear nothing from me at such a soul terror, perhaps, was the only medicine.-Mores present.' So saying, he prostrated himself again on the earth. Catholici. The people, by the priest's order, left the church, all but four FLORENCE.—None of its (Italy's) contrasts strike the poof the chief inhabitants with three priests: and when the litical economist so much, as the difference between Florence crowd was gone, the priest charged Godfrid on obedience to and Rome. All around Rome, and even within its walls, speak. O good men of God!' cried he, if I had one reigns a funereal silence. The neighbourhood is a silent desert, hundred mouths and as many tongues, I could not relate the no stir or sign of men, no bustle at the gates tell of a popuone thousandth part of what I have seen and heard since with lous city. But without, within, and around the gates of those below. Yea, I was dead, and for penitence, by God's Florence, you hear on all sides the busy hum of men. The mercy, permitted to return to the body. After my soul, with suburbs of small houses, the clusters of good, clean tradesmenincredible pressure and grief, had gone out, I was presented like habitations, extend a mile or two. Shops, wine houses, at the Divine judgment, though how or by whom I know not. market carts, country people, smart peasant girls, gardeners, So full of sadness was 1, that the whole world could not con- weavers, wheelwrights, hucksters, in short, all the ordinary tain or understand it. All the sins of my life, to the very last, suburban trades, and occupations which usually locate themwere clear and open before me. O good God, what confusion, selves in the outskirts of thriving cities, are in full movement what immense calamity encompassed me! I cannot say it, here. The labouring class in Florence are well lodged, and nor, without unutterable horror of heart, think of it: neither from the number and contents of the provision stalls in the can I relate what was said to me by the judge and the sur. obscure third-rate streets, the number of butchers' shops, rounding angels, and the demons, for it was ineffable. In a grocers' shops, eating houses, and coffee houses for the middle moment I was in the place of eternal and of temporal punish and lower classes, the traveller must conclude that they are ment, where I saw more souls tormented than I thought could generally well fed and at their ease. The labourer is whistling ever have existed from the beginning, or could ever exist at his work, the weaver singing over his loom. The number till the end: yet I knew and understood who every one of book-stalls, small circulating libraries, and the free access of
I saw souls in hell of whose salvation no one in this all classes to the magnificent galleries of paintings and statues, life ever doubted; and I saw souls in purgatory, reserved for even to the collection in the Pitti Palace itself, and the fresalvation, whom the judgment of men had pronounced to be quent use made by the lower class of this free access to the unquestionably in hell. Think not that the disposition, highest works of art, show that intellectual enjoyments conquality, and mode of punishment bore any resemblance to nected with taste in the fine arts—the only intellectual enjoywhat painters and preachers represent. I felt that these tor-ments open to, or generally cultivated by those classes on the ments could never be expressed by signs or tongues of men, Continent who do not belong to the learned professions, and for they are quite beyond what the human intelligence can are by the nature of their government, debarred from political conceive ; so that our description of them, compared to or religious investigation and discussion-are widely diffused reality, seemed like children's play. 0! I would rather weep and generally cultivated. No town on the Continent shows so now than speak, only that you command me on obedience much of this kind of intellectuality, or so much well-being to speak. 0, misery of all miseries ! far surpassing all and good conduct among the people. It happened that the thought; how horribly and unutterahly are to be dreaded the 9th of May was kept here as a great holiday by the lower class, torments of eternal woe! for the perpetual fire of hell lasts in as May-day with us, and they assembled in a kind of park the soul, which is always agitated with a fury inconceivable, about a mile from the city, where booths, tents, and carts with always desolated with a terrific sadness, always associated with wine and eatables for sale, were in crowds and clusters, as at restless demons, without hope, without consolation, without our village wakes and race courses. The multitude from town any respite-only every thing is seen, and heard, and felt and country round could not be less than 20,000 people spiritually, and not as we figure it. There are various places grouped in small parties, dancing, singing, talking, dining on of purifying flame, daily some are liberated, daily others arrive, the grass, and enjoying themselves. I did not see a single all have the certain hope of deliverance, though the hour is not instance of inebriety, ill temper, or unruly boisterous conduct; known. Much availeth the suffrages made in the charity of yet the people were gay and joyous. There was no police, God, and the pure fasts in the love of Christ, and the immola- except at the crossings of the alleys in the park, a mounted tions of the Lord's body and blood in the church. At the dragoon to make the innumerable carts, horses, and carriages moment of my presentation such a crowd of souls came from of all kinds and classes keep their files, and their own sides of the world to be judged, that it seemed as if the whole human the roads. The scene gave a favourable impression of the state race had died with me: and lo! all of them save twelve heard of the lower classes in Tuscany.--Laing's Notes of a Traveller. upon the
COTTAGE BUILDING IN TOWN AND COUNTRY. | the picture drawn of the “fine race" of men who live
A great deal of attention has recently been, and every upon Norfolk dumplings and have yet to be informed of day more and more is being, directed to the condition of the existence of such a being as Providence. But neither the dwelling-places of labourers and operatives, both with will the addition of domiciliary visits from the employer reference to the bodily health and the moral welfare of the or his wife, to see that lodgers are excluded and the bed. poor inhabitants. All this is very right and very en- rooms duly appropriated. What is wanted is a “concouraging, and must ultimately lead to good ; but in the “stant supervision,” on a far more extensive scale, and mean time it has been our fortune to observe, in the grounded far more deeply. What the poor, both in town speculations on this subject that have come under our and country, want, is, that their rich neighbours, who notice, one or two errors of a rather fundamental character. build cottages, with three bed-rooms and drains of unIt is a common notion among the schemers on these most surpassable quality, should make themselves loved by important matters, that much substantial good is to be taking an unostentatious interest in all the humble coneffected in the condition of the poor by a variety of me- cerns of the cottage and its inhabitants ; should be ever chanical or half-mechanical contrivances. Thus, great ready with counsel, with kindness, with instruction, with stress is laid by many very worthy persons on Acis of the little helps which, till the end of the world, bad times Parliament for the improvement of sewerage; on building- and fluctuating wages will always cause the labourer to acts for amending the construction of huts and cottages;
need. on the abolition of rent-free parish cottages; on the in
We have before us the particulars of a very interesting vention of rules, orders, and systems, by an attention to case-one among several-in which, by these means, a which a better routine may be got into for paying wages complete change has been brought about in the course of at convenient places and seasons; for ventilating work- a few years among a manufacturing population. The rooms; for discouraging drunkenness by summary depriva- case we allude to is that of Mr. Ashworth, the great tion of work; and even for cleansing the grimy skins which Quaker manufacturer, of Lancashire, whose name has colliers cherish beneath their white stockings, starched been rendered familiar in all parts of the kingdom by the shirts, and vain-glorious ruffles. Most of these things, recent unfortunate disturbances. Mr. Ashworth and his statutes and systems included, are truly admirable in their brother are the owners of (besides others) a large cotway; and require only one thing more to render them ton-mill in Egerton, which is worked by water power. supereminent—that is—that they themselves form part of Its immense wheel is one of the wonders of Lancashire, another system to be administered by each individual rich and attracts crowds of visitors, few of whom, we are told man towards all the poor within the sphere of his legiti- by a recent writer, “ fail to be attracted by the substantial mate influence. This other system is no other than the neatness of the cottages in the village.” About twelve system of Christian Charity : a love and sympathy for years ago, however, Mr. Ashworth takes care to inform the poor in the minds of the bulk of their wealthier neigh- us, the case was very different. In Egerton, as in most bours and employers. All endeavours built on any other places to which the Lancashire mill-power attracted sudground or basis than this must essentially and absolutely denly immense hordes of untutored workmen, these latter fail. They may succeed, indeed, in diminishing fever, were crowded together by a sort of chance-medley into drunkenness, bad smells, dirt, rates, and (in appearance) such dwellings as the neighbourhood afforded—cellars and even crime. But, doing all this, they must inevitably small huts-cottages built back to back,“ leave behind them the main evil of the present day—the “smallest space of ground, and at the least possible distrust and hatred of class against class, which are far more formidable enemies than any of those above We may here state, by way of parenthesis, that one of enumerated. Of course politics and the events of the the reasons which keeps the employers of labour or the passing time are quite beyond our sphere ; but it is an wealthy from exercising a reasonable superintendence abstract truth of universal application, that the un
over the poor by whom they are surrounded, is a feeling pleasantness of popular disturbances is very slightly of misplaced delicacy-a fear of intruding offensively on reduced by the consideration that the mobs who the independence of those beneath us in station. Shut enact them consist of well-washed operatives or rustics, in up ourselves in a cold isolation, that has no parallel in any clean linen, water-drinkers, fragrant and impervious to other part of the globe or period of history, the middle fever. A good sewerage is a most desirable thing ; but, and higher classes of England often imagine that this say what theorists will, it is better to have a society isolation is the natural condition of society, and that the united by love and exposed to fever than one in the highest poor are as ready as themselves to resent what they call sanitary condition-a marvel to Insurance-offices and intrusion. Some such feeling as this appears originally Actuaries, but cracked and sundered by hate.
to have deterred the Messrs. Ashworth from using their A perception of this sort of truths seems to be gaining influence with their work-people to aid them in setting ground even in the most utilitarian quarters. Thus, in a matters right in their domestic economy. recent Report addressed to the Poor-law Commissioners However, about twelve years ago, on putting several from the auditor of the Uckfield Union, in Sussex, we families into some new houses,“ a most malignant fever find the following instructive passage :
" broke out amongst them, and went from house to house, “ There are few instances in this Union where the “ till we became (says Mr. Ashworth) seriously alarmed for "employers of labour have erected a better description of the safety of the whole establishment.” On inquiring
cottage, containing three bed-rooms, viz., one for the into the causes of this fever, it appeared to proceed from man and his wife, one for the boys, and one for the the filthy and brutal state in which many of the cottagers
girls, with the laudable intention of creating greater were living. Although we felt very unwilling to do “ habits of delicacy among them. But, unless the “ anything which appeared to interfere with the domestic " domestic arrangements of the cottage are under the " management of our work-people, still the urgency of the " constant supervision of the master or mistress on whom case at the time seemed to warrant such a step.” An " the family is dependent, I have reason to know that the instant examination of all the cottages was set on foot,
mere construction of the cottage will not produce the and continued since that time, by means of periodical “ desired effect. The prospect of obtaining a lodger at visits, in which Mr. Ashworth and his brother occasionally “ 9d. or 1s. a week is too great a temptation, and boys join in person. A week or two of notice is usually given " and girls are immediately jumbled together in one before the visit, and thus “a laudable degree of emulation “ room to make way for the inmate.”
“ has been excited as to whose house, bedding, and furniOne naturally rejoices to find in a poor-law report even “ ture should be found in the best order. By these means the piece of half-wisdom contained in the truism we have" we were made acquainted with the wants and necessities printed in Italics. But it is only half or quarter wisdom" of the various families in our employ.". after all. The Uckfield auditor is quite right in saying The knowledge thus acquired induced the brothers to that commodious cottages will work little reformation in build“ larger cottages, with three bed-rooms in each,” to the moral condition of the poor. We saw that lately in provide for the separation of the sexes ; and they have