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sweep, and the small under-sec. will in his head. Their great smeltingscratch his way up to the Cabinet. houses and steam-power factories I will not impose on my reader the require big chimneys; and being an burden of carrying along with him overbearing set of self-made vulgar this double load. I will address fellows, they say they ought to be myself simply to one of these ca- a law to all England. You don't reers—the Statesman's. It is a want to make cotton-twist, or broadstrange but a most unquestionable gauge iron; so much the worse for fact, that no other class of men are you. It is the grandest object of so ill-disposed to those who are the humanity. Providence created men most likely to succeed them— not to manufacture printed cottons and of an Opposition, for that would be cheap penknives. We of Manchesnatural enough, but of their own ter understand what our American party, of their own colour, of their friends call manifest destiny ; we own rearing. Let us be just : when know and feel ours will be— to a man has long enjoyed place, pow. rule England. Once let us only er, and pre-eminence, dispensed introduce big chimneys, and you'll honours and pensions and patron- see if you won't take to spinningage, it is not a small trial to discover jennies and mules and treddles; that one of those little creatures he and there's that climbing boy Gladhas made-whose first scraper and stone declares he'll not leave the brush he himself paid for- I can't business, but go up, no matter how get rid of the sweep out of my head dirty the flue, the day we want —will turn insolently on him and him. declare that he will no longer re- Some shrewd folk, who see farmain a subordinate, but go and set ther into the millstone than their up for himself. This is excessively neighbours, have hinted that this hard, and might try the temper of a same boy is of a crotchety, intriguman even without a fit of the gout. ing type, full of his own ingenuity,
It is exactly what has just hap- and enamoured of his own subtlety ; pened ; an apprentice, called Glad- so that make the chimney how stone, having made a sort of great you will, he'll not go up it, connection in Manchester and Bir- but scratch out another flue for mingham, a district abounding in himself, and come out, heaven tall chimneys, has given warning knows where or how. Indeed, they to his master Pam that he will not tell that on one occasion of an sweep any longer. He is a bold, alarm of fire in the house-caused aspiring sort of lad, and he is not by a pantry-boy called Russell burnsatisfied with saying-as many ing some waste-paper instead of others have done—that he is getting going up the chimney as he was too broad-shouldered for his work; ordered this same Will began to but he declares that the chimneys for tell how the Greeks had no chimthe future must be all made bigger neys, and a mass of antiquarian and the flues wider, just because rubbish of the same kind, so that he likes climbing, and doesn't his master, losing patience, exclaimmean to abandon it. There is no ed, “Of all plagues in the world he doubt of it. Manchester and Stock- knew of none to compare with these port and Birmingham have put this climbing boys !'"
There are two classes of people ner of games, and the men who not a little thought of, and even speak several languages. I begin caressed, in society, and for whom with the latter, and declare that, I have ever felt a very humble esti- after a somewhat varied experience mate—the men who play all man- of life, I never met a linguist that was above a third-rate man; and I address itself. Imitation must be, go farther, and aver that I never in one sense or other, the strongchanced upon a really able man hold of the linguist-imitation of who had the talent for languages. expression, of style, of accent, of
I am well aware that it sounds cadence, of tone. The linguist something little short of a heresy must not merely master grammar, to make this declaration. It is but he must manage gutturals. enough to make the blood of Civil. The mimicry must go farther : in Service Commissioners run cold to simulating expression it must affect hear it. It sounds illiberal—and, the sentiment. You are not merely worse, it seems illogical. Why borrowing the clothes, but you are should any intellectual develop pretending to put on the feelings, ment imply deficiency? Why the thoughts, the prejudices of the should an acquirement argue a wearer. Now, what man with a defect? I answer, I don't know strong nature can merge himself so any more than I know why san- entirely in his fictitious being as guineous people are hot-tempered, not to burst the seams and tear the and leuco-phlegmatic ones are more lining of a garment that only imbrooding in their wrath. If-for pedes the free action of his limbs, I do not ask to be anything higher and actually threatens the very exthan empyrical--if I find that par- tinction of his respiration? simonious people have generally I t is not merely by their greater thin noses, and that the snub is adaptiveness that women are better associated with the spendthrift, I linguists than men ; it is by their never trouble myself with the de- more delicate organisation, their monstration, but I hug the fact, and more subdued identity, and their endeavour to apply it.
less obstreperous temperaments, In the same spirit, if I hear a which are consequently less egotisman in a salon change from French tical, less redolent of the one indito German, and thence diverge into vidual self. And what is it that Italian and Spanish, with possibly makes the men of mark or note, a brief excursion into something the cognate signs of human algebra, Scandinavian, or Sclav-at home in but these same characteristics ; not each and all-I would no more think always good, not always pleasant, of associating him in my mind with not always genial, but always asanything responsible in station or sociated with something that decommanding in intellect, than I clares pre-eminence, and pronounces should think of connecting the ser- their owner to be a “representative vant that announced me with the man”? last brilliant paper in the 'Quar- When Lord Ward replied to terly.'
Prince Schwartzenberg's Aippant No man with a strongly-marked remark on the bad French of Engidentity-and no really able man lish diplomatists by the apology, ever existed without such — can “that we had not enjoyed the advansubordinate that identity so far as tage of having our capital cities so to put on the foreigner; and with- often occupied by French troops as out this he never can attain that some of our neighbours," he uttered mastery of a foreign language that not merely a smart epigram but a Inakes the linguist. To be able to great philosophical truth. It was repeat conventionalities—bringing not alone that we had not possessed them in at the telling moment, ad- the opportunity to pick up an acjusting phrases to emergencies, as cent, but that we had not subora joiner adapts the pieces of wood dinated our minds and habits to to his carpentry-may be, and is, a French modes and ways of thought, very neat and a very dexterous per- and that the tone and temper of the formance, but it is scarcely the exer- French people had not been beaten cise to which a large capacity will into us by the roll of a French drum.
One may buy an accomplishment implies no brilliancy whatever in too dearly. It is possible to pay him who exhibits, though it argues too much even for a Parisian pro- immense resources in the treasury nunciation ! Not only have I never from which he derives this wealth. found a linguist a man of eminence, I have known scores of delightful but I have never seen a linguist talkers-Frenchmen—who had no who talked well. Fluent they are, other charm than what their lanof course. Like the Stecknadel guage lent them. They were neither gun of the Prussians, they can fire profound, nor cultivated, nor witty without cessation, but, like the some were not even shrewd or same weapon, they are compara- acute ; but all were pleasant-pleatively aimless. It is a feu roulant, sant in the use of a conversational with plenty of noise and some medium, of which the world has smoke, but very “ few casualties” not the equal_a language that has announce the success. The greatest its set form of expression for every linguist of modern Europe, Mezzo- social eventuality, and that hits to fanti, was a most inferior man. Of a nicety every contingency of the the countries whose dialect he spoke “salon ;” for it is no more the to perfection, he knew nothing. An language of natural people than the old dictionary would have been to essence of the perfumer's shop is the full as companionable. I find it the odour of a field flower. It is very hard not to be personal just pre-eminently the medium of peonow, and give a list-it would be a ple who talk with tall glasses before long one-of all the tiresome people them, and an incense of truffles I know, who talk four, five, some around them, and well-dressed woof them six modern languages per- men- clever and witty, and not fectly. It is only with an effort I over-scrupulous in their opinions abstain from mentioning the names for their company. Then, French of some well-known men who are is unapproachable; English would the charming people at Rome and be totally unsuited to the occasion, Vienna every winter, and each sum- and German even more so. There mer are the delight of Ems, of Berlin, is a flavour of sauer kraut about and of Ischl. What tyrants these that unhappy tongue that would fellows are, too, over the men who vulgarise a Queen if she talked it. have not got their gift of tongues! To attain, therefore, the turns how they out-talk them and over- and tricks of this language-for it bear them! with what an insolent is a Chinese puzzle in its involveconfidence they fall back upon the ments — what a life must a man petty superiority of their fluency, have led! What “terms” he must and lord it over those who are im- have “ put in " at cafés and restaumeasurably their masters! Just as rants ! What seasons at small Blondin might run along the rigging theatres—tripots and worse! What of a three-decker, and pretend that nights at bals-masqués, Chateaux des his agility entitled him to command Fleurs, and Cadrans rouges et bleus ! a squadron !
What doubtful company he must Nothing, besides, is more impos- have often kept! What company ing than the mock eloquence of a little more than doubtful occagood French. The language in it- sionally! What iniquities of French self is so adaptive, it is so felicitous, romance must he have read, with it abounds in such innumerable all the cardinal virtues arrayed as pleasant little analogies, such nice the evil destinies of humanity, and conceits and suggestive drolleries, every wickedness paraded as that that he who acquires these has at natural expansion of the heart will a whole armoury of attack and which alone raises man above the defence. It actually requires years condition of the brute! I ask, if of habit to accustom us to a display proficiency must imply profligacy, that we come at last to discover would you not rather find a man
break down in his verbs than his dualism. Every eminent, every able virtue? Would you not prefer a man has a certain integrity in his little inaccuracy in his declensions nature that rejects this plasticity. to a total forgetfulness of the deca- It is a very common ħabit, partilogue ? And, lastly of all, what cularly with newspaper writers, to man of real eminence could have ascribe skill in languages, and occamasqueraded—for it is masquerad- sionally in games, to distinguished ing—for years in this motley, and people. It was but the other day come out, after all, with even a we were told that Garibaldi spoke rag of his identity ?
ten languages fluently. Now GariMany people would scruple to baldi is not really master of two. play at cards with a stranger whose He speaks French tolerably; and mode of dealing and general mani- his native language is not Italian, pulation of the pack bespoke daily but a patois-Genoese. Cavour was familiarity with the play - table. called a linguist with almost as They would infer that he was a re- little truth; but people repeat the gular and professional gambler. In story, just as they repeat that Nathe very same way, and for the poleon I. was a great chess-player. selfsame reason, would I carefully If his statecraft and his strategy avoid any close intimacy with the had been on a par with his chess, Englishman of fluent French, well we should never have heard of Tilknowing he could not have gradu- sit or Wagram. ated in that perfection save at a Lord Castlereagh, the Duke of certain price. But it is not at the Wellington, and George Canning, moral aspect of the question I de- each of whom administered our fosire particularly to look. I assert reign policy with no small share of -and I repeat my assertion—that success, were not linguists; and as these talkers of many tongues are to Charles Fox, he has left a French poor creatures. There is no initia- sentence on record that will last tive in them — they suggest no. even as long as his own great name. thing—they are vendors of second. I do not want to decry the study of hand wares, and are not always languages; I simply desire to affirm even good selectors of what they that linguists—and through all I sell. It is only in narrative that have said I mean colloquial linguists they are at all endurable. They can —are for the most part poor crearaconter, certainly; and so long as tures, not otherwise distinguished they go from salon to salon repeat than by the gift of tongues; and I ing in set phrase some little misad. want to protest against the undue venture or accident of the day, they pre-eminence accorded to the possesare amusing ; but this is not conver- sors of a small accomplishment, and sation, and they do not converse, the readiness with which the world,
“Every time a man acquires a especially the world of society, new language, is he a new man?” awards homage to an acquirement is supposed to have been a saying in which a boarding-school miss can of Charles V.-a sentiment that, if surpass Lord Brougham. I mean he uttered it, means more of sar- to say a word or two about those casm than of praise; for it is the who have skill in games ; but as very putting off a man's identity they are of a higher order of intelthat establishes his weakness. All telligence, I'll wait till I have got real force of character excludes “fresh wind” ere I treat of them.
THE OLD CONJURORS AND THE NEW.
As there are few better tests of be injurious to him, so there is no the general health of an individual surer evidence of the delicate conthan in the things he imagines to dition of a State than in the char
acter of those who are assumed to prove to be of a more discriminat be dangerous to it. Now, after all ing and observant character than that has been said of Rome and he liked or anticipated, and the exthe corruptions of Roman govern- hibition in consequence be rendered ment, I do not know anything so critical, all he had to do was, to aver decidedly damnatory as the fact, to that the spirits would not come ; which allusion was lately made in it was no breakdown on his part. Parliament, that the Papal Govern Homer was sulky, or Dante was ment had ordered Mr Home, the hipped, or Lord Bacon was indisspiritualist, to quit the city and the posed to meet company, and there States of his Holiness, and not to was the end of it. You were inreturn to them.
vited to meet celebrities, but it was In what condition, I would ask, theirs to say if they would present must a country be when such a man themselves. is regarded as dangerous ? and in On the other hand, when the prowhat aspect of his character does per element of credulity offeredthe danger consist ?
when the séance was comprised of Do we want ghosts or spirits to the select few, emotional, sensitive, reveal to us any more of the iniqui- and hysterical as they ought to be ties of that State than we already when the nervous lady sat beside know? Is there a detail of its cor- the timid gentleman, and neuralgia rupt administration that the press confronted confirmed dyspepsiaof Europe has not sowed broadcast the artist could afford to be daring, over the world? What could Mr and might venture on flights that asHome and all his spirits tell us of tounded even himself. What limit peculation, theft, subornation, big- is there, besides, to contagional symotry, and oppression, that the least pathy ? Look at the crowded observant traveller has not brought theatre, with its many-minded spechome with him?
tators, and see how one impulse, And then, as to the man himself, communicated occasionally by a how puerile it is to give him this hireling, will set the whole mass in importance! The solitary bit of a ferment of enthusiastic delight. cleverness about him is his state- Mark, too, how the smile, that plays ment that he has no control what like an eddy on a lake, deepens into ever over the spirits that attend him a laugh, and is caught up by another Asking him not to summon them, and another, till the whole storm is pretty like asking Mr Windham breaks out in a hearty roar of mernot to send for his creditors. They riment. These, if you like, are come pretty much as they like, and spirits; but the great masters of probably their visits are about equal- them are not men like Mr Homely profitable.
they have ever been, and still are, In this respect Home belongs to of a very different order. Shakea very low order of his art. When speare and Molière and Cervantes Bosco promises to make a bouquet knew something of the mode to out of a mouse-trap, or Houdin en- summon these imps, and could gages to concoct a batter-pudding make them come at their bidding in your hat, each keeps his word. besides. There is no subterfuge about the Was it—to come back to what I temper the spirits may happen to started with-was it in any spirit of be in, or of their willingness or un- rivalry that the Papal Government willingness to present themselves. drove Mr Home out of Rome ? The thing is done, and we see it-or Was it that, assuming to have a we think we see it, which comes monopoly in the wares he dealt in, much to the same.
they would not stand a contraband With this provision of escape he trade? If so, their ground is at least secured himself against all failure. defensible; for what chance of atShould, for instance, the audience traction would there be for the