صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

"Dans la chambre, tout se passe avec ordre, mais il n'en est pas de même au dehors. Le bois est bientôt rempli de chevaux et de charrettes. Les électeurs arrivent en troupes, rient et chantent, souvent à moitié gris des le matin, et s'excitant à soutenir leur candidats. Euxmêmes ou leurs amis se présentent aux arrivans avec des bulletins tout faits, souvent imprimes, et s'exposent à leurs railleries et a leur grossiereté. Tout arrivant est questionné sur son vote; il est reçu avec applaudissement ou à coups de sifflet. Un homme influent se présente pour voter, énonce son opinion et ses raisons dans un petit discours; le bruit cesse pour un moment et il entraîne beaucoup de raond, avec lui; personne ne le moleste. Cependant le whiskey circule ; le soir, chacun est plus ou moins gris, et il est rare que le peuple souverain abdique son pouvoir sans une bataille générale,où personneiie s'entend, et où tous ceux qui ont encore leur voiture ont bien soin de ne pas s'engager. Chacun s'en va coucher chez soi. Les juges dépouillent les suffrages, et envoient le resultat à. la capitale. Le lendemain, battus et battans sont bons amis comme si de rien n'était, car chacun a appris dt s son enfance à plier devant la majorité. Vox populi vox Dei est ici un axiome absolu. Il est a remarquer que l'intérêt public ne souffre pas de ce tumulte, parce que généralement, avant de voter, chacun a fait son choix long-temps d'avance, et gris ou sobre, s' y tient. L'excitement d'un élection passe avec une extrême rapidité. Auparavant on n'entend parler que de celale lendemain il n'en est pas plus question que du Graud-Mogol." p. 98.

The above picture is quite in the style of Hogarth.

In less than a year, large stores are erected in the town, and well supplied with all things necessary for the people. The store-keeper is generally concerneil with some great house at the North. He brings his family with him, and they bring the fashions of the city from whence they came. Their dress forms a perfect contrast with that of the inhabitants. He often sells on a credit till the next crop, and when his goods arc nearly gone, he sends or goes for a fresh assortment. It is at this stage of the society, that the territory becomes the prey of vagabonds, bankrupts and speculators of all descriptions, who appear to assemble here by concert from all parts of the Union, and go about seeking whom they may devour. Our author particularly denounces the land speculator as the most troublesome among these rogues, and he exposes the arts by which he generally effects his purposes. But this state of things does not last long. As population rapidly increases, society takes a regular shape, and these vampires are obliged to move off. Social meetings for pleasurable purposes now commence, and days of public festivity are kept, particularly the 4th of July. This anniversary of our Independence is celebrated by an oration and a barbacue, with perhaps a subscription-ball in the evening. For the latter, the court-house is prepared. The Judge's bench is occupied by an old negro, scraping a fiddle, accompanied by two little ones, thumping on the tamborin and the triangle; tallow candles throw their brilliancy on the scene; but the women are as pretty and as well dressed as they are in New-York. The planter throws off his coarse bunting-shirt, and draws out of his trunk the true-blue which he wore at another time, in another country, and his manners are those of the best society. The wretchedness of the music, &c. only serves to increase the gaity of the dancers, (p. 106.)

Every succeeding year adds to the numbers of the legislature. The government has now been reduced into form—courts are established in each county, and the counties annually increase. The taxes on negroes and other property are fixed—charters of incorporation are given to different towns, and the time now arrives when the second degree of the territorial government is conferred. It consists in giving to the people the election of the council, and some other privileges connected with the organization of the judiciary. They now begin to feel the importance of self-government—public opinion takes a decided character—population and emigration increase, the latter in a geometrical ratio—capital accumulates, and a bank is established. As soon as the important period arrives when the territory can count forty thousand souls, it is entitled to be admitted into the Union as a State. A convention then assembles to form a constitution, which provides always for an elective governor, and two legislative chambers. The legislature sends two senators, and the people one representative to Washington; and the new State begins to revolve in her orbit, adding strength to the particular interests she affects, and changing the equilibrium of the political balance of the Union.

We shall conclude our notice of these letters by recommending to the serious consideration of such of our Northern friends as feel a disposition to intermeddle with the domestic policy of the Southern States, which they totally misunderstand, the remarks of Colonel Murat contained in his fourth letter, though we do not agree with him in all his speculative opinions. The part on the comparative comfort of the slaves here, and the operatives of Europe, we translate for their use.

"In all countries and in all times a great majority of the human race is condemned to live by manual labour, and I have no doubt, that this portion of society is happier and more useful in a state of slavery than .otherwise. Compare the condition of our negroes, well clad, well fed, with no care for to-morrow, no anxiety about their families; compare it, I do not say with the degraded race of free negroes and mulattoe* pressed down with the burdens of freedom without its advantages, but with the white operatives of Europe, working twice orthrice as much, and they and their families always on the eve of dying with hunger. I do not hesitate to say that our negroes are happier, not only1 than the workers of the manufacturing towns of England, but even than the peasantry generally throughout Europe. Do you reply to me that the idea alone of liberty counterbalances the privations and inquietudes to which this same liberty gives birth? I will answer you that this is true for you and me; but a certain degree of education, and a certain energy of moral life, are indispensable to the enjoyment of the noble idea of liberty. Take an Austrian, Hungarian or Bohemian peasant, transport him to America, and tell him that he is free. The first Sunday he will find no one to waltz with him ; he will curse the country, her liberty and her elections, and will prefer to return to his Schatz, his Vervalter, his WirthHaus and his Roborth. On the other hand, the idea of an obligation to recognize a superior, would render one of our squatters wretched if you carried hiin to Europe, even if you gave him every advantage imaginable. They, who by destroying the feudal system in Austria, supposed they were ameliorating the condition of the peasant, deceived themselves egregiously if they did not begin by enlightening him. This change of condition would be necessary to him, for he could not live happy and feel his moral degradation. This is pretty much the case with the free negroes antl mulattoes in some parts of the United States. But our slaves are happy, and do not desire any change. Whatever is said to the contrary, the negro is indisputably of an inferior race of men to the white, and apparently incapable of the same intellectual enjoyment. Why have they remained savages from the beginning of the world to the present day 1 Why do they again relapse into savageism as soon as they are left to themselves, as has taken place at this very moment in Hayti? Their happiness is limited to the happiues offche animal, and that they enjoy more freely as slaves than they would as freemen or savages. This picture, doubtless, does not agree with that painted by Mr. Wilberforce and his saints. What! you will exclaim, can a negro be happy under the lash of a driver, constantly liable to see himself separated from his family, or to witness their dishonour through the libertinism of a master or overseer? All this is pathos misplaced. I hire a white workman; he breaks open the door of my store-house, robs me, is discovered and condemned to work on the public highway, by which he is disgraced for life, and loses the little morality and honesty which remained; his misery is perhaps aggravated by that of his family to whose support his labour was necessary. Let one of my negroes do as much; he is whipped, and mends his manners. Corporeal pain once over he perceives no other bad consequence, and his innocent children are not punished for the fault of their father. Whatever may be said, cruel punishments are not practised, for they would be contrary to the interest of the master. If a workman whom I hire does not work, I send him away; but 1 cannot do this with my negroes, and 1 am obliged to make them work by corporeal punishment. In large plantations, where several hundred negroes are collected, discipline and police rules, more or less rigorous, are necessary, or every thing would soon be destroyed or stolen. As to their separation from their families, it is first necessary that they should have one. Generally they attach themselves to one wile and retain her; but they are exceedingly prone to change; they who are religious get married, it is trne, at church; but as often as they change their wives they do so again; and I have known them receive the sacrament a dozen times, and have as many wives living, each of whom has as many husbands. Although their masters try to encourage marriage by allowing a great many little advantages to the contracting parties, it is rare that a negro marries on the plantation where he lives; he loves better to go among his neighbours. * * * • *


"A well regulated plantation is, in fact, a very interesting spectacle; every thing prospers there, and goes on in perfect order. Each negro has a house; in general they are placed in a regular order; he has his poultry and his pigs; he raises vegetables which he sells. At sun-rise the sound of a horn calls him to his work; each has his task proportioned to his strength and his skill. Commonly this task is finished by three or four o'clock in the afternoon; at noon the work is broken off by dinner. The task done, no further service is required of him; he cultivates his garden, or hires himself to his master for extra work, or visits his wife or mistress on the neighbouring plantation. On Sunday morning he puts on his best clothes and goes to the barn to receive his weekly rations; he passes the day as he pleases, often in dancing. The driver has only to give them their tasks in the morning, and see that they are finished in the evening. The master takes a ride on horseback over the fields and gives his general orders; all this is regulated like a regiment; and I have seen six months glide awny without having even to scold. Nevertheless, from time to time quarrels and thefts are to be punished. At Noel, the negroes have three days rest; twice a year they receive the stuffs necessary for their clothing, which eacfc makes up according to his taste ; those that live in the house are treated exactly like the white servants in Europe; they are generally born and reared in the family of which they are considered as part; they are very much attached to it and very faithful; whenever the master has a child he gives it a little negro of its own sex or age, who is brought up with it and becomes its confidental servant. The little negro and mulatto girls brought up in the house are in general excellent workwomen and often very pretty; but their mistresses pay great attention to their manners particularly if they wait on the ladies; if they behave badly, the punishment of which they are most afraid is that of being sold. Besides these two classes of negroes they have many workmen, as carpenters, blacksmiths, tailors, &c.; in general their owners hire these out and treat them like white labourers, often their masters are satisfied to require of them their wages annually, and leave them to work out as they themselves think proper, p. 132.

This picture is generally true—hut we must close our extracts and refer our readers to the work itself, which will repay them for the time spent in its perusal.

Art. V.—The History of Painting in Italy, from the period of the revival of tfie Fine Arts, to the end of the eighteenth century. Translated from the original Italian of the Abate Luigi Lanzi. By Thomas Roscoe. 6 vols. 8vo. London. 1828.

The Fine Arts and the Sciences have, in their rise and progress, been so intimately connected with each other, that they have been allegorically represented as sisters, born of necessity, nursed and cultivated by reflection, and perfected by genius. Their promotion or decay has depended always, besides various physical causes, upon the two all-powerful moral influences of religion and government. The co-operation of these causes has, from the beginning, so happily or wretchedly decided the fate of science and of art, that it is not easy to separate their history from that of religious opinions and political revolutions.

We shall, at present, confine ourselves to the history of the fine arts, and especially of painting, exhibiting its gradual improvement from the rude monochromatic state, to the heighth of its glory in the Italian schools.

The art of Plastic in soft matter may, perhaps, be considered as the most ancient among the fine arts, because it does not require any effort of the imagination, but imitates the mass of some certain object, together with its external appearance, which last, alone, is the occupation of painting. The shade of any body exposed to the sun, or oilier light, may have suggested the first idea of outlines. These filled up with one colour, without regard to the subdivisions of the internal parts, gave rise to the monochromatic figures, so called by the ancients, which was undoubtedly the simplest and oldest kind of painting. It is quite natural for men, in the infant stage of civilization, to put more value on the charm of colours, than on that of the form, the exact perception of which requires a more practised sense ; and, extending the same principle, that they should be, as they have been, peculiarly fond of the red colour, it being more striking to the eye. Throughout all zones we find that this colourhas been used not only furmonochromata, but also for ornaments on the bodies, dresses and furniture."

* Plin. H. N. lib. ixiiii. c. 7.* This colour was sacred with the Romans; they painted with it the face of the statue of Jupiter; the victorious consuls, also, painted themselves with it.—Plin. ib. Red monochroinata are also mentioned among the Chaldeans, by Ezckiel xxiii. 14. "For as she saw painted men on the wall in rr.d * " Cinnabarl vetere*. qua; ciiam nunc vocant nionocbromata. pinjrebanr''

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