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proof against injury than iron, the whole system_of railway management as regards the despatch of trains is to the last degree imprudent, and must undergo a change.
Unhappily, a remarkable instance of the fallibility of reliance upon guards, as always having their activity of body and mind available, has just occurred upon the Midland Railway:
On Saturday night, between the Masborough and Kilnhurst stations, as a coal train was passing the Rawmarsh station, one of the rods connected with the engine broke and the train quickly came to a standstill. A goods train from King’s cross to Leeds, which closely followed, was also stopped. The guard of the latter train immediately was: back to signal other trains and prevent collision. Nothing, however, was seen of him by the driver of the next train, which was also a goods train from Camden to Leeds, and it was with difficulty the train was stopped and a catastrophe averted. As the express train was then nearly due at that place, the guard of the Camden train hastened back to order the danger signals to be put on. He had not proceeded far before he stumbled against something, and, on looking, was horrified at seeing a human foot and a quantity of brains. Blood was scattered in all directions, and fully fifty yards further on he found the frightfully mangled corpse of the unfortunate guard. He was so overcome hg the sickening right which presented itself, that he appears to have forgotten his object in going down the line, and the express train passed him at full speed, unchecked. The night was exceedingly dark and foggy, and until nearly close tothe Camden train the driver of the express saw nothing before him. He with his stoker had barely time to leap off before his engine dashed into the goods train with fearful violence. Several of the binder wnggons of the goods train were smashed in pieces; but the most extraordinary feature of the collision is that the engine of the express was undamaged, and the passengers escaped with no other injury than a violent shaking. Intelligence of the catastrophe was quickly conveyed to Masborough. and the station-master, Mr Turner, with a staff of assistants, proceeded to the place. The unfortunate guard, whose name was Alba, and who belonged to Leeds, was first sought for. From the darkness of the night it was supposed he had mistaken the line he was on, and that he had been cut to pieces by the down London express which had passed.
Here were trains all following in quick succession, and two guards, one immediately after the other, set about the appointed duty of giving warning of the stoppage, but both failed, the one poor fellow having been killed on his way, the other disabled by the horrible sight of his comrade's mangled remains. Could railway directors have conceived such a cause of non-fulfilment of duty? They have as yet assumed that in no conceivable event would guards be unable to go back five hundred yards to signal a stoppage, but here we find one killed on the errand and another mentally incapacitated by the shock of seeing the mangled remains. And so breaks down the main reliance upon which lives are risked in running trains at short intervals. But the practice will continue till some terrible tragedy occurs from it, such as was so narrowly escaped in this very instance.
Sin—Such is the question mooted in the Times, under the well—known initials of “ J. O." The answer is so simple, that it is difficult to believe that the uestion emanates from the real “ J. 0.," because the real “ . O." is so well versed in human affairs and human kindness that he must know that the finger of blame, and scorn if you please, can only point to one man, and that man figures in the memorandum of the Duke of Cambridge of the 18th Dec., 1862.
If the Articles of War are not waste paper, justice will not be done without a trial in an English court of justice.
. It is all very well for certain peeple to try to throw dust into the eyes of the Cpublic, to divert attention from the real question. Has mur or (according to the laws of England)
been committed? Were the Articles of War obeyed in P
India, or even at home at Aldcrshott,—the reception of the two illegal orders at that place was in direct contravention of the Articles of War? T e supposed state of the officers of the Enniskillings, even if true (but which is more than doubtful, and said not to be true), is no excuse for an unlawful act to a subaltern any more than it is for tyranny or oppression. It is within a week that Sir George Grey felt himself bound to obey the law; he re rieved the murderer Townley, although sane, because he elt himself bound by the law, viz., an Act of Parliament; and yet military martmcts set Acts of Parliament and the laws at defiance.
It is to be seen whether the Legislature will ermit chaff and Old Bailey finesse to override Acts of Par iamcnt and the law. The electors of England will not be satisfied unless a trial he had in a British court of justice ; and then if it be shown that the Articles of War are mere waste paper, all Well. and good. V.
Sir,-—I am a non-commissioned officer in the British army. Personal] I cannot complain of the service, as it has been my good ortune hitherto to serve under commanding officers w 0 were strictly just, and treated a man according to his deservings. If _a man got into trouble, he had to suffer the consequences ; if he was steady and did his duty, he was respected and treated accordingly. But, however, from what I have seen during my service, and from what I have heard from other soldiers with whom I have been associated, I know that my favourable experience is wholly accidental, and that it is quite possible that by the change of a commanding officer, or from some other cause over which I have no control, I may, without fault on my part, come to grief; and some do find that ruined prospects and a blasted character are all have gained by years of service and good conduct. This conviction has become all the stronger by my reflection on Colonel Crawley's Court-Martial ; and I can assure you that the following remarks contain not only my own sentiments, but those of eVery non-commissioned officer with whom I have conversed (and I have conversed with many) on the
subject. How the rivate soldiers regard it I cannot tell, as
Lieut.-Col. Crawley has been honourably ac uitted by the
Viewed in this light, how are we to regard the late occurrences in the Enniskilling Dragoons 9 What are the facts P I do not allude to floating rumours and exaggerated reports, but to the facts as we can gather them from the sworn evidence, from official documents, and letters authenticated by the signatures of those who wrote them. Colonel Crowley placed three sergeants under arrest. Their imprisonment was of the most stringent character. N 0 communication allowed outside the prison; scntries over them by night and day, they saw none but the military officials and their own servants, who were searched at every visit. One would suppose that men so rigorousl guarded must not onl be accused of serious offences, but a so that the 'proofs of t eir guilt were so abundant that their commanding-officer could have no doubt of obtaining a conviction, and would lose no time in bringing them before a Court-Martial that they might receive the punishment due to their crimes. Why, the men were never brought to trial at all ! One of them, before his im risonment closed, was summoned to a higher than any earthly tribunal ; the other two, after a month’s imprisonment, were, without trial, and consequently without punishment, dismissed from confinement and sent back to their duty; so that we are shut up to the conclusion either that great offenders have been most culpably allowed to pass unpunisbed, or that innocent men have been illegall and consequently unjustly
unishcd; and which of these alternatives we should adopt 1s a matter on which the circumstances leave as little room for doubt. When Colonel Crawley laced these sergeants in arrest, he reported the matter to is military superiors; and it is doing this officer no injustice to assume that his statement against the prisoners would be as strong as he could possibly make it, and nothing be kept back which was likely to tell against them. General Mansfield, after considering the case, reported that the men had done nothing for which it was possible to frame charges against them, or for which a’ Court-Martial would convict, but nevertheless ordered them to be kept in arrest. Sir William Mansfield, in effect, said, “You’ll never get thee fellows punished if you bring them to a Court-Martial, for they have been guilty of no military offence, and done nothing on which a Court could'couvict, so we'll punish them at our own hands, and let them taste the delights of close arrest, as Colonel Crawley defines this method of confinement.” Which is about as legal as if a 'udgc on circuit should, in some case, any to the counsel for t e prosecution, “ Well, I've looked over the depositions, and I can't see that the prisoner has been guilty of any offence against the Statute or Common Law, or done anytllin for which ajury would convict ; so we won't bring him to trial, but clap him in gaol, and kcc him there till the next assizes, and then see what’s to be one." And I must say that, to my judgment, the worst feature in the case is that it is not a miconception or misconstruction of some obscure point of law by a single officer, but a wilful and deliberate
reach of the plaiuest letter of the law, by a number of superior officers charged with the administration of military afl'airs in a distant part of the British dominions. By the Articles of War it is expressly enacted that no soldier shall be kept more than eight days under arrest without charges being preferred against him, and a Court-Martial being assembled to try him. Yet these men, whom it was never intended to brin to a Court-Martial, of whom General Mansfield deg-lured that they had done nothing of which a Court-Martial could take notice, and of whom the Commander-in-Chief of the British army declared that they had done nothing to warrant their being placed under arrest, were nevertheless kept in illegal confinement for a month, and then dis
missed without trial, and without redress. No man in the
army is allowed to plead ignorance of the Articles of War. N 0 man in the army, from the youngest drummer up to the oldest general, can possibly be ignorant of the Articles of War. Colonel Crawley knew that every day past the eighth that he kept these men in arrest he was committing an illegal act. Major-General Farrell knew that, when he knowingly permitted an officer under his command to keep these men imrisoned he was an accomplice in an ille al action. General ansfield knew that when he decided ese men had done nothing contraryto military law, but nevertheless ordered them to be kept in confinement for an indefinite period, he was committing a deliberate breach of the law ; and the climax of all this illegality was reached when Sir Hugh Rose, the Commander of the Indian army, in his lengthened remarks on Paymaster Smales' Court-Martial, sympathised _with the hardships Colonel Crawley suffered in wanting facilities to cook his breakfast, but had not a word of sympathy or rebuke for the suffering of men so illegally im risone , but went out of his way toblacken the character an tarnish the memory of a brave man, whose melanchol and untimel death mi ht have secured his silence, if it cou d not excite is sympat y. And thus we have the singular spectacle of officers of the highest rank trampling on the law, and treating with contempt thosc articles _they apply so severely to. others; but it must be cdifyiu to privates and non-commissioned officers, to whom the Artie es of War are held up as something sacred, and on whom their slightest infringement brings down severe punishment, to see how coolly they are ignored and deliberately disregarded by their highest superiors when the colonel of a regiment inflicts an illegal punishment upon three sergeants who have somehow or other incurred his dis leasure.
p to this point the military authorities are not to blame. Under the best system men will be found who abuse their power and disregard the law; and when those in authority call them to account for their injustice, they do all we can expect. and are blameless. But so far as known, the Horse Guards have not reprovcd, and certainly have not punished, the authors of this offence. That an offence had been committed was undeniable ; but that Colonels, Generals, and Commander-in-Chicf should be brought to book because three sergeants had been imprisoned in defiance of law and justice was repugnant to the official mind. _ _Stlll Parliament had taken the matter up, and the public opinion was roused, and something must be done. So we had the expensive sham of a Court-Martial, and the most insignificant of the_oflcnders tried on the minor charge, which it was hoped special pleading might mystify, and the professional sympathy of hls judges excuse; while the major offence, committed in a manner that no evidence could overturn and no sophistry explain away, was carefully excluded from the investigation ; and now Colonel Crawley, honourably acquitted, can return to his command with the sure conviction that he may carry out close arrest after his own fashion with rfect impunity. _
The Horse Guards occasionally pub ish circulars notifying rewards for good conduct as an encouragement to the deservmg and well-conducted soldier. Trials such as Colonel Crowley’s let as sometimes see what these rewards too often practice ly amount to. Sergeant-Major Lilley, after long years of service, had reached a position beyond which those who enter the British army by the ranks rarely ascend; and if anything cau console his friends for the untimely fate‘of their relative, it must be the honourable testimony so universally borne by all ranks, from the private to the colonel,to his merit as a soldier and his character as a man ; for it is established as clearly as anythiu can be proved by evidence that Lilley was a steady, well-be avcd mun, sober In his habits, and zealous in the discharge of his duty. Colonel Crowley, in his wordy and somewhat bombastic defence, never controverted this ; and with all his desire to cast odium on every one opposed to him, be carefully abstained in this part of his case from those imputations of falseth and perjugy he indulged in so unsparingly on the others. Sergeant- ' njlo'r Lilley was then a well-conducted soldier, and what was is rewardP—Death whilst enduring an illegal confinement, a dishonourablc grave, and a blasted character; publicly stigmatizcd in an official document by the Indian Commander-inChief, and held up to the scorn and contempt of the whole Indian arm as a worthless, dissipated nian, whose death was caused by is own intemperance l Verily, .men who look to be rewarded for good conduct will do wisely to give the British army a wide berth. In an other walk In life a steady, sober man who attends to his ut will succeed so far at least as to be respected in his sp ere ; and should some member of the upper classes do him some grievous wrong, or subject him illegally to imprisonment, he can appeal to the laws of his country, knowing that while the rank of his oppressor might possibly be considered an aggravation, it would not be held as an excuse for the offence. If he enter the British army and suffer injustice, God help him, for at the Horse Guards there is none. _
Discipline, strict discipline, is indispensable to the existence of an army, which without it would become an armed mob and a curse to the count . But the very essence of discipline is that it be impartia ly administered to all, high and low, who are underits authority and subject to its laws. So that while the private soldier knows that should hc_be guilty of disrespect or insubordination to superior authority, no matter how insignificant, even that of a lance corporal, he will be severely unished ; he should also_know that if he is unjustly treated liy the highest oflicer in his regiment, he may confidently ask redress. Whether we are to believe, after the revelations in recent Court-Martials, that this is the spirit in which discipline is administered in the British army, is a question which those who propose to enter the service will do well to consider.
I am, doc...
[As a bad custom has lately arisen of writing to the newspapers in characters assumed for the sake of effect, we may as well say that this sensible and well-written letter has really been sent to us by a non-commissioned ofiicer.—En. EL]
COLONEL CBAWLEY AND HIS SUBSCRIBBBS
Sir,—In looking over the list of the subscribers to the Crawley Defence Fund, I cannot but observe how large a portion of the number are military and naval officers—many
of them of high degree. This, perhaps, is natural enough,
and to be expected—there is a fellow feeling amongst, them. Had Colonel Crawley’s conduct been of a more fia t character, there is little doubt that the sarne subscribers would have been equall prompt. What weight the exhibition of their names will ave upon public opinion is another question, but there are some ladies and gent emen in| the list Without commissions in her Majesty’s service, amongst the rest two individuals who describe themselves as Miss and Master -—; how old is Master -—P How flattering must such testimonials be to the Oppressed Colonel, who in his defence announced, with much force and indignation, that none but military persons had any right to give or _to hold any 0 inion upon military matters. Will be, after this, i condescen to accept the subscriptions of the uvenrles? or! will he tell them that they are little babies, on recommendi them to forward their subscri tions to the fund for the houseless and destitute poor, or or the benefit of the wretched sempstresses P—the last certainly more worthy the attention of a young lady. If the young lady and gentleman are determined to lend their support to redress military wrongs, why not lend their aid to enable Sergeant-Major Wakefield to obtain justice—certainly not through a Court-Martial, but a court of law and justice! \V.A.S. 11 East Parade, Hasjings, January 12, 1864.
The Story of the Guns. By Sir J. Emerson Tcnnent, K.C.S., LL.D., F.R.S., &c. Longmau and Co.
“ It was my fortune,” says Sir Emerson Tcnnent, “ at “ an early age to hold a commission as an officer of artil“ lery in a foreign service, during a time of war. It was "in the ‘pre-scientific period,’ and under circumstances “ which, however advantageous for observing the destruc“tive owers of ordnance both by land and sea, were “ little favourable to the study of its construction. But “ they imparted an interest in the subject which recent “ occurrences have served to revive.”
In the ten years since the Crimean war more has been attempted or done for improvement in the construction of firearms and projectiles than was attempted or done in all the years before that time, since firearms were discovered.
From the year 1628, when Arnold Rotsipen obtained from Charles I. letters-patent for ‘a new ways or meaues of Inakcinge gunner, whereof a pattemc and proofs was shown to the King's selfe,’ down to the end of 1852, not more than three hundred parents had been issued for inventions; whereas more than double that number were granted within the next seven years.
For the general public, clear knowledge of what has been done and what may yet be looked for is confused by assertion and counter-assertion as to this or that isolated fact, and it has been hitherto most difficult for any one to get at a plain story in the din of the conflict of inventors. That difficulty Sir Emerson Tennent has removed. Disembarrassing himself of all controversy, and leaving time and discussion to bring to the right and any vexed question of precedence among the men who have caused the facts to be such as they are, he has made it his sole care to ascertain and bring together into simple narrative, both easy and exact, a clear sequence of the facts that form the history of the Rifled Musket, Rifled Cannon, and the Iron Navy since the year 1852. The little work is, for greater clearness of statement, divided into three parts, which separately discuss the course of improvement in the Musket, the Cannon, and the Construction of War Ships.
Before the Crimean war our battles were fought only with old-fashioned artillery.
The muskcts borne by our soldiers in the Peninsula and at Waterloo differed in no essential particular from those with which their ancestors fought at Blenheim and Ramilies; and the substitution of the percussion-cap for a flint-lock took place at a still later period. Military weapons were allowed to retain all their primitive rudeness, whilst the utmost care and ingenuity were exerted to bring sporting guns to perfection. Money and skill were bestoch without stint on a rifle to bring down a deer; or on a fowling-piece with which a pheasant was to be shot; but any weapon, howcvcr clumsy, was thought sufficiently good when the issue of a battle or the fate of an empire was in the balance.
The old musket allowed so much windagc, or space between the shot and the circumference of the barrel, that the shot rebounded from side to side as it passed through the barrel and left it as the last rebound might have determined its direction. Gravitation also very sensibly affected the direction of its course of small Velocity. As the result of experiments made in 1838, the soldier was told in firing at a man at 600 yards to fire 130 feet above him, or in other words, if he wished to hit the church door to aim at the weathcrcoek. At the battle of Salamanca only one shot in 437 took effect. It has been said that for every man shot by Brown Bess the weight of his body in lead had to be fired away. During the Caffre war, 80,000 cartridges were fired at a single engagement in which only twenty-five of the enemy fell.
Not very long ago, a well-trained marksman, provided with an old regulation musket, was placed to fire at a target eighteen feet square from a distance of 300 yards, and found that he could not put even into that spacious area one bullet out of twenty. At 200 yards his sutCcrl was not greater, and yet the fire-arm thus tested was the regular weapon of the British soldier, so late as the year 1852.
Although it anticipates, to some extenl, the thread of the following narrative, I may be pcrmiltcd here to notice, that on the occasion on which this exposure of the old pattern musket was made, the improved rifle which had then recently been issued was brought forward, under precisely the same circumstances, and scarcely a shot missed the target; demonstrating, that if a soldier can be enabled to hit uniformly, where he hit but once out of twenty times before, his increased value is equivalent to an addition to the numbers of the army in precisely that proportion. Not only so, but the distance at which the new weapon could kill having been increased from one or two hundred yards to fourteen hundred or more, it came to be felt, that unless artillery could be improved in the same ratio as the rifle,
In 1851 the Duke of Wellington having entirely satisfied himself of its superiority, gave the first word _ for change by sanctioning thc partial substitution of the Mmié rifle for Brown Bess. The superiority of the Miami, though real, was slight, and it gave place a few years later to the Enfield.
The Minié ball was a modification of the Combine d lige of Colonel Thouvenin, which in France superseded the Delvigne rifle in 1842. That carbine had a tigo or short stalk screwed into the breech, around which the powder lay and upon which the base of a ball with a conical point was forced by the ramrod. This pillar or stalk was liable, of course, to become bent, and was therefore superseded by the use of tho Minié ball. It was a ball smaller than the bore of the piece and easily dropped in, but having in its base a conical recess to take the point of a cup of iron somewhat larger than the opening, which being driven in by the explosion, effected at once the expansion and rifiing of the shot.
In 1852 Lord Hardinge became Master-General of the Ordnance, and at the close of that year he succeeded the Duke of Wellington as Commander-in-Chief. He found the Minié musket subject to grave disadvantages. It was cumbrous, the barrel weighing 41b 1002., and the bullet weighing 680 grains.
Its tendency to fouling was considerable—the distended portions of the projectile sometimes detached themselves and clogged the grooves, rendering loading extremely difficult—and occasionally the iron cup, instead of merely expanding the lead, was driven completely through the opposite extremity, converting the bullet into a distorted tube, which sometimes remained firmly fixed in the barrel.
In the Enfleld bullet, which was adopted in 1853, a wooden plug was substituted for the iron cup.
It is a question, whether eventually both iron and wood may not be got rid of, since it is found that the expansion of a leaden ball, if hollowed at the base, can be effectually attained simply by the force of the explosion, when the metal driven outwards, finds its first and great resistance in the 'lands,’ or smooth parts of the barrel left untouched by the rifiing, against which it is pressed with great force, and thence overflows into the grooves.
Embarrassed by defects inherent in difl'ercnt systems, one of the earliest measures of Lord Hardings was the institution of a comprehensive enquiry into the whole subject of rifled arms and projectiles. He placed himself in communication with Mr Westley Richards, Mr Purdcy, and others of the most eminent gun makers in Great Britain. Six of these supplied paltcrn muskets of various diameters of bore, ranging from '530 in. the smallest, to '650 in. the largest. Comparisons Were also made of the weapons in use by the armies of other military powers, and information was collected from leading factories of Europe and the United States; and by the aid of the facts and suggestions thus acquired, the adoption of the musket since known as the ‘Enfield rifle' was resolved on, and arrangements were put in progress for the organisation of a government factory, to be provided with machinery, chiefly on the American model, for shaping the various parts. Here it was proposed to commence at once the production of an arm for the British forces combining, it was hoped, the varied excellencies manifested in each of the pattern rifles sent in by the most eminent makers in England.
Such was the origin of the ‘ Enfisld rifle ’ of 1853. It wssstronger than its predecessor of 1851, and at the same time the musket and its sixty cartridges weighed three pounds less. It was rifled with grooves and lands on the old system, with one turn in 6 feet 6 inches.
ts diameter was '577 of an inch, and at limited ranges it fired a bullet weighing 630 grains with great accuracy and force. During the ten ycars that have elapsed since its adoption, although other rifles made in England have greatly exceeded it in almost every essential quality, it admits of no doubt that the Enfit-ld rifle is still superior to any arm yet adopted in other countries, and its eficiency was well attested at the Alma and at Inkermann, where, in the words of flip Timu correspondent, ‘it smote the enemy like a destroying ange .’
The Enfied rifle, thus brought into use, had also a considerable tendency to foul; the velocity of its ball proved to be lower than had been looked for, its trajectory therefore was higher and its precision less. Moreover, although all were produced by the by the same means from similar material, no two guns were alike in their performance. The variation could only be accounted for by some subtle imperfection, and advice was taken of Mr Whitworth who was justly pronounced by the Secretary of State for the War Department to be “ the most celebrated mechanician “ of this country.” Mr Whitworth was especially distinguished for the minute accuracy of his machines.
For the attainment of this consummate perfection, it is the belief of Mr Whitworth that the superiority of all machinery is dependent on two elements—the power of measuring with uncrring precision. and, associated with it, the faculty of producing a true plans surface, that is, one so absolutely level that, when opposed to another of equal truth, their contact must be in all parts complete. The Astronomer Royal, Mr Airey, in his evidence before a committee of the House of Lords, in 1855, stated that the degree to which Mr Whitworth had succeeded in “ making perfect the planing of surfaces was entirely unknown before his time." To such a pitch of excellence has he brought it by a process peculiar to himself, that a plate of metal prepared by him, when opposed to the face of another similarly treated, exhibits a contact so intimate as to enable the operator to lg'fl the under one with it, as if by its actual adhesion to the other;—or if less closely applied, so that the thinnest possible layer of atmospheric air may still remain between, the upper plate will rest on the noose eluded particles, as if floating on quicksilver.
With similar devotion to accuracy Mr Whitworth, in the search for a means of determining dimensions with precision, constructed a machine, so accurately and delicately made, as to measure objects which differ even by the millionth part of an inch—a division so minute as to be perceptible only by touch after it has ceased to be discernible by the eye. 80 nice is the adjustment, that in using it an inch of steel can be held to be aninch,onl_v so long as the thermometer stands at 62“, the slightest excess of temperature producing an appreciable elongation; and the standard yard, a square bar of steel, when placed in the machine is so expanded by the slightest lone/i of rhcfinger as to show an appreciable lengthening even under the fig/luencc of the infinilesi'mal amount of heat thus imparted.
It might be supposed that tho value of measures so minute must be but abstract and visionary, and that it could be only in the larger quantitirst but their use might be available. In practice, hooner, the imptrtaucs of aiming at such accuracy has been visibly demonstrated. The former habit of being contented with approximate
measurements engendered a positive inability to duly estimate
superior correctness; and mechanics became accustomed to look on considerable variations in size, often productive of serious mischief, as not only vsnisl, but even as a result of necessity. But like the Sybarite, whose sleep was disturbed by the inequality of his couch, occasioned by a rufiied rose-leaf, Mr Whitwcrth was impatient of even infinitesimal incxactitudes; and has accustomed the men in his employment to work to the 20,000th part of an inch, till measures so diminutive have become as familiar as those of larger dimensions. In the most celebrated workshops in England thirty years ago, mechanics were chary of criticising work which was “ out " by the 32nd part of an inch, whereas in his Works on error of "division," is at once noticed and corrected, a division lbcing tho 10,000th part of an inch. The influence of these improvements in mechanical means has imparted a distinctive character of accuracy to the machinery of the United Kingdom, which places it in advance of all other countries; and to this nothing has more signally contributed than the standard gauges, graduated to a fixed scale as constant measures of size, for which practical engineers are indebted to the studious labours of Mr Whitworth.
Mr Whitworth was not a gun maker, and he was applied to only as the man most able to detect a flaw and secure perfection in the apparatus by which guns were made.
Regarded from noloftier point of view than as an order in the course of trade, the proposal made by the Government that Mr Whit-worth should furnish designs for a complete set of new machinery for the Enlield establishment, Was one of great pecuniary value. It would not have been difficult for him to have undertaken to supply the machines required, adapting those of known construction and making the necessary modifications suggested by himself; and it is manifest that the simple execution of such a commission on the terms proposed would have been of great commercial profit to his firm. But actuated by a higher motive, he did not feel himself justified in complying with the request; and in explanation of his scruplcs, he “urged,” says Lord Hardinge, " the importance of ascertaining what the first principle of this unknown secret is, before any machine could be con=tructed, to make a rifle that shall require no farther alteration."
It was next proposed to him to undertake the construction of machinery for producing the rifle-barrel only ; but to Ills barrel, above all others, his objection more specially applied; and in the absence of the re uisite knowledge, he stated frankly that before giving an answer 0 wished tovisit the establishments of the priucipal gun-makers in London and Birmingham, and to obtain from them all the information he could collect. “ I found," he says in a report to the Secretary for \Var, "great difference of opinion among them, and the statements I received were so contradictory, that I was unable to come to any satisfactory conclusion." The truth was that the no trade encrally in England at that time was described in the House of Commons as being in “ a rude and unsystematic " condition. The most skilful mechanics engaged in it worked by “knack " rather than by system, and the making of two rifles of equal excellence was almost entirely dependent on the dexterity of the mechanic, who had no defined laws for reproducing them alike. It is only jusf, however, to men of such eminence as many of those engaged in that trade to state that this adherence to working by hand instead of by machinery was almost a compulsion of the period ; since the demand was too limited to justify the erection of apparatus so costly as that which would have been required to supersede hand labour.
In this dilemma Mr Whitworlh, instead of grasping at the order for new machinery for Enfield, offered to the Board of Ordnance to conduct a preliminary series of scientific experiments in order to determine the true principle on which rifle barrels ought to be constructed; provided a shooting gallery was erected for him ncsr Manchester, under his own direction, in which to carry on the necessary trials, and thus obtain data for his guidance. The actual expense was of course to be defrayed by the Treasury ; but he intimated his readiness to devote his time and attention to the subject gratuitously, actuated only by the interest with which It had inspired him. The gallery, he said, must be enclosed, in order to insure the protection of the experiments from the influence of winds, and other disturbing causes. In it he proposed to commence a series of trials with the most accurately made rifles which could then be produced. To those which proved the best he would apply ccrtain tests, to determine the precise form of the barrels, and arrive at the knowledge of the particulars in which they severally excelled, and of the sources to which that excellence was due; and thus, by combining results, he hoped to ascertain the conditions required for producing the most perfect instrument. The information so acquired was to be at the service of the government, to whom, in order to facilitate manufacture, he would supply graduated gauges, with directions for their use. For eventual success in constructing machinery to produce and reproduce rifles giving the greatest possible range and accuracy without the minutcst variance in exocllcnce and quality, he had the firmest reliance, not on speculative lbcories but on the teachings of experience, derived from his accomplishment of the two great mechanical dcsiderats—“the production of true surfaces and perfectly straight lines, and the power of making measurements with any required exactitude, even to the millionth part of an inch."
The offer was not at once accepted. Prompted, however, by the Earl of Ellesmere, Lord Hardinge urged upon the Treasury compliance with the sensible suggestion that the right sort of arm should be clearly ascertained before entering upon an expenditure for the supply of arms, that could not be less than two millions sterling.
The assent of the Lords of the Treasury was signified in May 1864, and a gallery of 500 yards in length by 16 feet broad 20 feet high was forthwith commenced in the grounds attachcd to Mr\Vhitworth’s residence, near Manchester. This was provided with a target on wheels for shooting at varying distances, rests for steadying the aim, and screens to exhibit the flight of the projectiles. 'l‘wc military oflicera were nominated by the Commander-in-Chief to assist at the experiments, and Mr Westley Richards was associated with Mr \Vhitworlh at the request of the latter, who was desirous of bonefiling by the information and experience of a gun-maker of his high reputation.
The gallery having been thrown down by a storm, experiments were not begun till March, 18-55, the interval being occupied with experiments for the improvement of heavy ordnance.
Here we must pause for the present, to complete next week our outline of the substance of this well-timed “Story of the Guns." But the book itself should be read by every man who has a lively interest in the maintenance of English power, which is English peace, against all who may desire to see it broken. The arrangement is clear, the style simple, every technical term that must be used is also explained. and the subject so treated is of high interest even as a detail of remarkable energy of research applied in these our times to a particular inquiry. But above all its use is that it will enable thousands to whom the daily argument about guns, so long
joined to the current news, is a speech in an unknown tongue, to enter into the whole of the momentous question with a strong intelligent interest that will make itself felt whereVer and whenever the pressure of a well-informed public opinion is most needed.
The Life and Letters of Washington Irving. By his Nephew, Pierre M. Irving. In Four Volumes. Vol. IV. Bentley.
This last volume of Washington Irving’s life, treating only of the American side of his history, save where the quarrels of English publishers about the right of issuing his works make an unwelcome digression, is perhaps less interesting than those that have preceded it. Yet the last years of a hole old man’s life, rich in fame and in the love of friends that should be dearer than fame, cannot fail to be attractive. The narrative of the present volume extends from 1847, when Irving was sixty-four years old, to 1859, when, at the age of seventy-six, his work in life was ended.
The volume is filled chiefly with letters to and from the now famous man on public and private matters:
Tho following letter was Written to a young lady, who proposed to come to him and ask his counsel about the publication of some poems of a brother who had graduated with distinction, and been cut off in the bloom of his youth:
“Sunnysidc, Feb. 8, 1851.
“Dear Madam,—Wiiile I sincerely sympathise with you in the aflliction caused by your great bereavement, and have no doubt your brother was worthy of the praise bestowed on his memory, I must most respectfully excuse myself from the Very delicate and responsible task of giving an opinion of his poems. I have no confidence in the coolness and correctness of my own judgment in matters of the kind, and have repeatedly found the exercise of it, in compliance with solicitations like the present, so productive of dissatisfaction to others, and poignant regret to myself, that I have long since been driven to the necessity of declining it altogether.
“Trusting you will receive this apology in the frank and friendly spiritin which it is made, I remain, with great respect, your obedient servant, “\VABHINOTON Inviiio."
Here is a reply to a modest application from an unknown admirer to “pen (him) just one original Umugkl: ”
" )t-ar Sir,—-I would be happy to furnish you with the ‘ original thought' you require; but it is a coinage of the brain not always at my command, and certainly not at present. So I hope you will be content with my sincere thanks in return for the kind and complimentary expressions of your letter."
No man could be more bored than Mr Irving, by, as he once expressed it, “ all sorts of letters from all sorts of persons." I remember his once showing me a letter asking him to subscribe to some particular book. “ Now," he said, turning to me, “ this must be ansWered. Every letter to he answered is a trifle; but your life in this way is exhausted in trifles. You are entangled in a network of cobWt-bs. Each letter is a cobweb across your nose. The bores of this world are endless."
But there were better claims upon his letter-writing powers. Here, in part of a letter written to his old friend, James K. Paulding, when he was seventy-two, is a pleasant picture of his closing days :
You hope I am “sliding smoothly down the bill." I thank you for the hope. I am better off than most old bachelors are, or deaervs to be. I have a happy home, the happier for being always well stocked with womenkind, without whom an old bachelor is a forlorn, dreary animal. My brother, the “ General," is wearing out the serene evening of life with me; almost entirely deaf, but in good health and cod spirits, more and more immersed in the study of newspapers with which I keep him copiously supplied), and, through them, better acquainted with what is going on in the world than I am, who mingle with it occasionally, and have cars as well as eyes 0 n. . . .
I have had many vivid enjoyments in the course of my life, yet no portion of it has been more equany and serenely happy than that which I have passed in my little nest in the country. I am just near enough to‘town to dip into it occasionally for a day or two, give my mind an airing, keep my notions a little up to the fashion of the times, and then return to my quiet little home with redoublsd relish.
During a part pf the dozen years here recorded, Irving busted himself With the preparation of a revised edition of his earlier works. Through them all, moreover, he was hard at work on his ‘Life of Washington,‘ the book on which he spent most care, and which will doubtless live the longest. “You have done with Washington,” wrote Prescott, in a letter of honest praise, “ just as I thought “you would, and, instead of a cold, marble statue of a “ demigod, you have made him a being of flesh and blood, “ like ourselves—one with whom we can have sympathy.” So thought _all other Americans, and the happiness of Irving’s closing years_ was not a little increased by the honour heaped upon him. Of none of his writings could he complain that they were not cordially received. In the United States he realised more than 42,000l. by the sale of his books; from English publishers he received 12,2171. 10s. for copyright; the largest payments being 3,1501. for the ‘Life of Columbus,” 2,1001. for the ‘ Conquest of Granada,’ 1,575]. for the ‘ Tales of a ’I‘ravcller,’ and 1,0501. apiece for ‘ Braccbridge IIall,’ and ‘ Tales of the Alhambra.’ He died as he wished to die. On November the 28th, 1859, he dined with his nephew and niece, wrth whom he had been staying:
On retiring for the night, at half-past tcn, his niece Sarah, who always took charge of his medicines, went into his room to place them as usual, within easy reach. “Well,” he exclaimed, “I must arrange my pillows fir another weary night I" and then, as if half to himself, “If this could only end!" or “ When will this end!” she could not tell which ; far, at the instant, he gave a slight exclamation, as if of pain, pressing his band on his left side, repeated the exclamation and the pressure, caught at the footbonrd of the bed, and fell backward to the floor. The sound of his full and the screams of Sarah brought the whole family in an instant to his room. I raised his head in my arms. Every means was resorted to to recall animation, and continued until a physician—Dr Curuthers, from a distance of two miles—arrived, who pronounced life entirely extinct. He had passed away instantaneously. The (-lld for which he had just been sighing—the end which to him had no terrors—had come. His departure was sudden; but so he was willing it should be. In the fulness of years, With unolouded intellect, crowned with the warmest
afl'ecticna of his countrymen, and with an assured ‘hope of a happy immortality, he had gone down. according to his own pathetic aspiration, “ with all sail sct." \Vho that loved him would have wished to recall him?
The Rock—cut Temples of India. Illustrated by Seventyfour Photographs taken on the spot by MBJOI Gill; Described by James Fergusson, Flt-8., M.A.B.S. Murray.
Rock-cut temples, or ehitayas and monasteries, or viharas, are the earliest remains of Indian architecture. Originated by the Buddhists and appropriated by the Hindoos, they are so numerous that fifty groups and not less than a thousand separate examples of them have been found. Of the fifty groups, all but three only—those of Behar and Orissa in Bengal. and that of Mahavellipcre in Madras— are within bounds of the Presidency of Bombay. As that part of India lies nearest to Egypt and Ethiopia, those regions were looked to for the original models of the cave temples; but Mr Fergusson, when describing these structures in his ‘ Illustrated Handbook of Architecture,‘ suggested that the localization might be accounted for by the peculiar suitableness of the rocks in the cave district for the formation of such structures. “The whole cave " district," he then said, “ is composed of horizontal strata “ of amygdaloid and other cognate trap formations, gene“ rally speaking of very considerable thickness and great “uniformity of texture, and possessing besides the advan“ tage of their edges being generally exposed in perfectly “ perpendicular cliffs, so that no rock in the world could “either be more suited for the purpose or more favourably “situated than these formations are. They were easily “ accessible and easily worked. In the rarest possible “instances are there any flaws or faults to disturb the “ uniformity of the design; and when complete, they “ afford a perfectly dry temple or abode, singularly uniform “in temperature, and more durable than any class of temple '.‘ found in any other part of the world.”
During a long residence in India, writes Mr Fergusson now, in the Preface to this very beautiful series of photographs from the Rock temples and monasteries of Ajuntn and Ellora, he was able to visit all the Rock-cut temples then known to exist in that country. First, in 1886, he examined those of Cuttack. In 1838 an extended tour was made for the purpose of exploring those of Western India. In 1841 he completed the investigation by visiting those of Maliavellipore. A paper read to the Royal Asiatic Society in 1843, and published in the eighth volume of its Journal, embodied the results of these investigations, and that paper was republished in 1845, illustrated by nineteen lithographic plates of Rock-cut architecture. Mr Fergusson thus, in one sense, made the subject his own ; but in so doing be excited a wide interest in it, and produced the expression of a strong desire that these monuments might be carefully preserved and yet more generally studied. The Court of Directors of the East India Company, in accordance with a memorial presented to them, praying that some person should be appointed for that purpose, sent Captain—now Major—Gill, to copy the fast pcrishing frescoes of Ajunta. The pictures that he sent home during the first year of his residence at Ajunta are now to be seen in the Indian Court of the Crystal Palace.
“ For many years past," says Mr Fergusson, “ no further drawings have reached this countgy, but instead, Major Gill sent home in the spring of this year to r Layard nearly two hundred atereoscopic views of Indian subjects. About one half of these were scenes of the chase, of Indian life, and illustrations of the Mahometan buildings and of the scenery in the neighbourhood of Ajunta. 0f the remaining half, many were duplicates, but those forming the illustrations of the present volume have been selected as being all those in the collection which could fairly be considered as representing Bockcut architecture."
The oldest of the group of these caves is that at Beliar, formed between ac. 200 and the fifth century of our era. The most complete group is that of Ajunta, amply and beautifully illustrated by the photographs in this volume. These temples, formed between the first century ac. and the tooth or eleventh of our era, and illustrate every variety of Buddhist art within that period. Next to these in importance is the group at Ellora, consisting of three series, a Buddhist of about the eighth century, a Hindoo formed during the next two or three centuries, and a Juina group of a century later still, the eleventh or twelfth. They belong, therefore, to three religions, and their variety thus gives them a special interest. It is to the Ajunta and Ellora groups that the illustrations in this volume are confined. Excellent in themselves, well mounted, each having its description under it written by the one most competent cxpounder,—who introduces the whole series with a general account of their origin and striicture,—thcse photographs form one of the most intoresting and delightful books that ever recommended itself alike to the mistress of the drawing-room and to the scholar in his study. Only enough has been here said by Mr Fergusson to enable every one to read all that is told by the pictures themselves, and they are eloquent.
misery which follow the pursuit of vicious courses. The scene is laid inan English village, and the “two families ” are those of an honest, hard-working shepherd, and an idle, drunken blacksmith, each of whom has a helpmate with qualities to correspond. Good training and good example on the one hand, with bad example and neglect on the other, produce their inevitable consequences; but the “power of religion" is shown by its fruits of repentance, and the story ends happily for all. Whatever may be the reader’s creed, his prompt assent will be given to the form in which this lesson is presented. Miss Bateman’s clever volume is admirably adapted for young people, but all may profit by its contents.
BOOKS OF THE WEEK.
The Duke of Manchester’s two volumes, illustrating ‘ Court and Society from Elizabeth to Anne,’ are based, says the preface, upon papers of which nearly all the originals are at Kimbolton. A few are in the Record Office ; one is in the Private Cabinet of the Empress Eugenie; and others which suggested an extension of the account of Catharine of Aragon—who died at Kimbolton—are at Simancas. The preface adds that “ for the account of Queen Catharine “ and for information concerning many of the persons and “ occurrences alluded to in the work, the Editor is indebted “ to the historical knowledge and literary skill of Mr \V. “Hepworth Dixon and Dr Doran, to whom he begs to “ tender his thanks for assistance which so greatly “ increases the interest of these volumes.” With Catharine of Aragon the work opens, and the first half of the first volume deals with affairs of Henry the Eighth’s reign, the second half with affairs from the accession of Elizabeth to the Revolution. The second volume begins early in the seventeenth century with an account of Walter Montagu, and advances to the close of Queen Anne’s reign. The work is illustrated with steel engravings of the fulllcngth portraits at Kimbolton of Henry Montagu, first Earl of Manchester, Charles Montagu, first Duke of Manchester, and Charles Montagu, Earl of Halifax.
Mr Pierre Irving's ‘ Life and Letters of Washington Irving’ closes with the publication this week of the fourth volume, which we have reviewed in a preceding column.
Of the beautiful book of photographs from the Rockcut Temples of India, with descriptions by Mr Ferguson, we also have spoken this week in another column.
Mr Fergusson's theory as to the Mosque of Omar, in Jerusalem, is stated by the Rev. George Sandie in the preface to his ‘ Horeb and Jerusalem,’ to be at the root 0. the account of the Topography of Jerusalem which that volume contains. The purpose of the volume is to trace the route of the Israelites of the Exodus, from Goshen to Sinai, and to determine the sites connected with the Life and Death of Christ. The book contains a folding map of the Peninsula of Sinai; a plan of Horeb and Sinai; plans showing the Topography of Jerusalem according to Dr Robertson; according to Josephus; according to Scripture, and in the time of the Early Pilgrims; besides three topographical pictures, one endeavouring to represent Calvary and the adjacent part of Jerusalem, during the Crucifixion, the others, general views of Jerusalem in the time of the Kings and in the time of Christ.
Miss Cobbe’s ‘ Cities of the Past’ is a reprint from ‘ Fraser’s Magazine,’ of the author’s impressions of travel during a solitary pilgrimage to the East. It lightly describes in successive sketches besides Jerusalem (as the City of Peace), Baalbeo (as the City of the Sun), Cairo (as the City of Victory), Rome in the Carnival (as the Eternal City in a temporary phase), Jericho, &c. (as a Day at the Dead Sea) and a Day at Athens.
Mr Mitchell’s book on the Herring, written on the banks of the Forth under inspiration from the Scottish Athens, has for its frontispieoe a folding sheet, lithographed and printed in colours and metals, showing the herring as it appears immediately after it is taken out of the water, in a picture of the size of life, and with its iridescence imitated by a silver sheen. Five other plates represent the different forms of boat used in the English, Irish, and Scotch, the Dutch and the French herring fisheries. The work thus illustrated is founded upon that by the same author which obtained the medal offered by the Royal Scottish Society of Arts for the best essay ‘ On the Natural History of the Herring, considered in connection with its Visits on the Scottish Coast.’ Since that essay was published the author has, he says, been prosecuting his researches for the purpose of producing a work at once more popular and more elaborate. He has frequently visited the fisheries on the West Coast, the East Coast, Cornwall, and the English Channel, and the coasts of Ireland. He has been on board several of the Dutch fishing busses, and went to their head-quarters at Vlaardingen and Maassluis; he has visited the shores of the Baltic on both sides, and the shores of the German Ocean; has resided for some time in Norway, and visited the principal fishing districts in that country He has visited also most of the French fishing ports from Dieppe to Marseilles. Portions of his work have been read before the Royal and the Royal Physical Societies of Edinburgh, as well as at the meetings of the British Association at Oxford, Manchester, and Cambridge. The author believes that he has solved the hitherto disputed questions as to food, periodical visits, migration, &c., and says that he has for the first time established the important fact that herrings visit our coast twice a year. Mr Mitchell adds in his preface that he gives for the first time the geographical distribution and also the 'chronology of visits of the herring, not only on the British coasts, but whereever else it has been ascertained. The work is subdivided into three books: Book I. setting forth the Natural His. tory of the Herring; Book II. the different modes of fishing and curing at home and abroad; Book III. telling the progress of the Herring Fishery from the Earliest Period to the Present Day.
Of Sir Emerson Tennent’s ‘ Story of the Guns ’ we have been speaking this week in another column.
Mr Kimber’s ‘Mathematical Course,’ or cram-book of Mathematics for the Matriculation and B.A. or B.Sc. examinations of the University of London, presupposes “ some acquaintance with the most elementary principles “ of Arithmetic and Algebra,” and its object is said by the author to be to “ economize the time and energies ” of students preparing for the before-named examinations by “ presenting in one volume the information they must “ otherwise collect from various sources."
Of Dr Guthrie’s Discourses on ' The Gospel in Ezekiel, first published about nine years ago, it is enough to observe that the copy among the Books this Week is one of the “ fortieth thousand.”
The Novels of the week are the ‘ Wildfire' of Mr Walter Thornbury; a tale of the French Revolution; Mr Charles Clarke’s ‘Box for the Season,’ which is not an opera box, but Boulter's Farm, otherwise ‘ the Chateau,’ in “ the “ grand pasture lands of our favourite hunting country ;" ‘ Dan to Beersheba,’ a novel of American Life North and South before the Civil War, but written without reference to that catastrophe; and ‘Christmas at Old Court.’ The work last named is a novel introduced by lines of verse to Mr Webster, closed by an Epithalamium on the marriage of the Prince of Wales, as recited by Miss Avonia Jones on the Adelphi stage, and introducing into the middle of its modern story a mock antique drama on Cervantcs’ story of the Curious Impertineat, which is called “ The Shakspere “ Forgery," and modestly suggested to have been perhaps written by Robert Greene. A soliloquy in it, upon which our eyes happen to fall, begins thus:
Madman l—But am I not more mad than be
The novel may have been born to the author of a kindly Doll among the Muses, but lines like these make us suspect the other muse an Ida who is coy. If so, the author can apply to himself and his aim to shine in the same work as modern novelist and as Elizabethan dramatist, a line or two from the true Greene:
Rare wit, fair face, what heart could more desire?
Let Doll be fair, she is won; but I must woo
Let this, however, be said without prejudice to the author of ‘Richelieu in Love,’ of whose new book it yet remains for us to speak critically.
The only book of poems published this week, ‘ Pictures
of the Past,’ by Mr William Bradfield, is said in the' author's preface to have been inspired by his love for antiquities; usually the most coy of all the Muses.
A new quarterly, the ‘Quarterly Journal of Science,’ well planned, and with much that is of sound popular interest in its contents, is among the publications of the week, and there are tWQ new monthlies. One of these is the ‘ Impartial Leader,’ which takes for its motto “No Party “—--but Truth and Truth only," while announcing itsel! as written by Catholics, and resolved “ never to speak against “ Catholic opinion." It promises to give a philosophical miscellany,—-“ for higher intelligenoes—only, in fact, for those “ who are pleased with solid contemplation ;” a creed, “ truth only ;” controversy, in which “ we intend to dis“ cern between truth and falsehood ;” social intercourse that " shall traverse the world, and lead the mind to make “ a thorough acquaintance with human doings in general,” in fact, the reader is promised liberal supply of a comprehensive omniscience, with fun and anecdote to make infallibilityamusing. The other new Magazine, which is to record “ Events of the Month,” adds to the chronicle sketches, essays, and a serial tale, beginning “ Maud Ramsay, seated, “ with her doll on her lap, on the morning of her tenth “birthday,” a review of Lord William Lennox’s ‘ Remi‘niscences,’ an account of the earthquake on the 6th of last October, and such queries, to be answered next month, as “ Why is our present dynasty called the House of ‘\Brunswick P” For the success of a monthly chronicle more vigour of execution and a firmer unity of purpose are essential.
Since we began these articles, at a time when the literary credit of the London stage appeared to have reached its lowest ebb, we have from time to time gladly recorded indications of a turn in the tide of theatrical affairs. Managers begin to risk some action upon a better opinion than they once had of the public taste, and there are few or none of them who do not honour their profession too well to neglect the opportunity for its advancement that they now find in the unsuspected readiness of the public to enjoy that which is really good.
Embodying, then, for a short time in this argument our comments on the pieces produced at the theatres, we shall now proceed somewhat hopefully from week to week with the discussion hitherto so often interrupted. With hearty satisfaction we record in the first place the triumphant reception at the Parscsss’s theatre of a poetical English version by Mr Westland Marston of the German version of Moreto's masterpiece, which has long been reckoned one of the four classical pieces of the elder Spanish drama, El Dasden con cl Desden. This was the play which Louis Quatorze when he wished to delight a Spanish wife and mother caused to be produced at his Court with the utmost magnificence of appointment, and with Moliere for its translator. But Moliére’s version of the play under the name of the Priiiwssc cl’Elidc was as complete a failure as his imitation of Spanish heroic corned in Don Garcia (10 Navarre, except that Don Garcia, pro used for the public, was immediately damned, while the Princesse d’Elide, produced for a Court féte, was received with polite admiration and supposed at Court to be a great success. The piece is usually omitted, and very properly, from editions of the works of Moliere, for it was written in such haste to obey the King’s wish and punctually to grace his grand festival, that Moliére had only time to put the first act and the first scene of the second act of his version into metre, and hurried the rest into prose; so that the chansonnier Msrigny said this Comedy had been summoned in such haste to Court that she had only time to put on one of her buskins, and appeared half naked, with one shoe off, the other on. More successful was the Italian version of this famous drama by the truest and wittiest poet among Italian writers of comedy, Count Carlo Gozzi, familiar to Germany through at least one work in Schiller’s version of his Turandot. Gozzi Italianized Moreto’s masterpiece under the title of the ‘Philosophic Princess, or the Antidote,’ ‘Principessa Filosofa, 0 il Contraveleno.’ Germany too has its popular version of El Dcsden um cl Destlcn in the Donna Diana of Joseph Schreyvogel, a journalist of refined taste but little genius, who translated two of Calderon’s plays as well as the playi of Moreto. He was Kotzebue’s successor as secretary of“ the Viennese Court Theatre, and commonly wrote under
thc name of West. It is evidence of its popularity at home that his Donna Diana has been one of the plays, chosen for acting in London by a German company, and that Mr Westland Marston, except a serious departure from his text in the last scene, has thought it worth a close translation. Direct ,from Moreto Mr. Marston evidently has not taken a line, but he translates him through a conscientious German, and we only wish he had confined himself at the end of the play as elsewhere to the few changes that satisfied the man he followed. Of that presently. Meanwhile wc are, on the whole, exceedingly well satisfied. Mr Marston could find, perhaps, good critics to argue in support of the modification of the dcnoucment, sacrificing, we think, poetry to stage effect, which is the one change he has made. He is a man credited deservedly with good dramatic taste. Enough and more than enough we have had of the contemporary rubbish of the minor theatres of Paris. It is greatly to the credit of Mr Vining that he has taken from one of the few English writers of
our day of whom we know that they can raise the dramatic taste of the public if we will let them, a metrical English version of the Spanish masterpiece, which, though but a translation of a translation, is indeed in itself a careful and most creditable piece of English dramatic literature. It is further to the credit of Mr Vining, as manager, that he has not only accepted and produced such a play, but has engaged also artists to represent it who can prove of how much better things than we have had of late, the genius also of our actors and actresses is capable.
Don Agustin Moreto of Cabana, son of Agustin Moreto and Violante Cavana, by seventeen years a younger man than Calderon, was born at Madrid in the year 1618, two years after the death of Shakespeare. Lope de Vega was born two years before the birth of Shakespeare, and in the year of the death of Lope de Vega, at the age of seventythree, Calderon was a man aged thirty-four and Moreto was a youth aged seventeen, already displaying his turn for song and drama. He had written at least two, probably more, of his numerous comedies before the age of twenty-three, and his career was smoothed for him b the affectionate regard of Calderon, who appreciated heartily his genius, and probably procured for him his introduction to the Palace. When Moreto began writing, the Spanish drama, which had just attained its topmost height of glory was there wrestling with the superstition by which it was to be toppled down into the depths. Lope de Vega was but nine years dead when the King’s Council subjected the stage to a rigid censorship, reduced the number of the actors, forbade the production of original comedies that were not histories or lives of saints, and condemned the works of Lope de Vega as pernicious. Thus it is that we have from Calderon and Moreto so many sacred plays. But there was a true earnestness in those men, a spiritual expression of the religious fervour that was hard intolerance in many, and this characterised also their one fellow poet and dramatist, a man younger than Calderon but older than Moreto, Solis y Ribadeneira, at one time Secretary to Philip IV. Solis died in the unfulfilled resclve to take holy orders. Calderon died a member of the Congregation of the Apostle Peter at Madrid, to which he had given all that he possessed. Moreto, having forsaken poetry and the world, became a priest, and died Rector of a Refuge at Toledo, where it was his chief duty to tend the afflicted poor. In his latter days Moreto regretted the lighter works of his wit, blameless as they all were. His graceful touch more than once gave new life to a“ hasty work of Lope de Vega’s that had passed into obscurity, and even this play of El Dcsden con cl Dcsden, which has made his fame in his own country imperishable, is founded on a poor play that preceded it called ‘ The Avenger of Women,’ if not on Lope de Vega's forgotten ‘ Miracles of Contempt.’
The original play is like Mr Westland Marston’s version of the German version of it, in three acts, and, of course, in the usual rime asonants. Schreyvogel’s version agrees with Gozzi's in altering the name of the hero from Don Carlos to Don Caesar. This change Mr Marston adopts. He follows his German original also in omitting the character of the Prince of Bearn from among the suitors, in altering the name of the “ gracioso” Polilla, confidential secretary to the proud Princess Diana, into Perin, and in adding the short character of a Fioretta, with whom Perin may have a little comic business.
The gracioso was a popular addition made by Lope de Vega to the stock characters of a Spanish play. He was a comic character, sometimes half a buffoon, like the ‘ fantastical person’ of the contemporary English Stage, more frequently the lively representative of the shrewd popular mother wit, and the person of his drama through whom the author might be with the first to laugh at any extravagance of plan or fervour of romance about his story. Not seldom, and especially in Moreto's comedies, he is at the very core of the play; and it is so in El Desden or Donna Diana. Here it is he who suggests to the hero how he may touch in his cold Diana the warm heart of a woman ; how he may melt the snow on her proud heights till it shall throbbing come down upon the valley in an eager flood. True as his love is, let him leave the other suitors to provoke her scorn by their submission, but let him surprise her on her own ground, holding himself as grapes above her reach, though elsewhere all the vintage of earth may seem to have been tilled only for her. He does so. When the warmth of his love rises to his lips there is the 'gracioso,’ the gay confident of either side, to warn him back into a show of ice; or if the lady doubt her senses, there is the sly gracioso, a true friend though a deceivcr, at her car. He
I is her confidential private secretary, who affects to be of one
mind with herself, and can she doubt him? The part is well played by Mr Vining with a true gracioso's breadth of comedy.
Mr Herman Vezin, a quietly good actor who can rightly speak blank verse and give true but enforced expression to a poet’s thought, well represents the life and love under the mask of the suitor who coerces himself to surprise disdain with a disdain yet greater, though as a true Spanish gentleman punctilious of courtesy. Mrs Charles Young, now Mrs Herman Vezin, plays the Diana with much grace and feeling, and marks with variety of expression the gradations of her passage from a cold disdain to a piqued curiosity, a wound of pride, :1 growth of wonder, admiration, and the loosening of the whole woman’s nature in the Princess. It is a wonderful part for a great actress, capable of displaying nearly the whole range of her power, and absolutely demanding, in the second act, that she shall put forth all her arts of fascination. Mrs Herman Vezin is not a great actress, but she is a charming one who has achieved her best successes in the poetical drama, and the quality of her Donna Diana has assured the success of this play on the London boards. cold suitor, invited to speak commonplace of love to the Princess whose colour it has, by her contrivance, fallen to his lotto wear, pours his whole soul out earnestly at her feet, is triumphantly scorned, and recovering his guard dextcrously turns the tables on the lady and builds new success on his humiliation, is remarkably well played. But why could not Mr Westland Marston have faith to the end? We believe that he fell into the old snare of doubting the power of an English audience to enjoy the simple play of wit and poetry. In the original play, and in the German version of it too, the disdainful Diana is in the last scenes all a woman, with the passion of her love set free. To provoke her indifferent suitor into a word of desire to win her, she tells him she has relented from her proud theory, and means to give herself to one of ‘ his rivals, but she is caught in that poor little trap, and tied in a knot of etiquette that seems to bind her to make good the word so lightly spoken. She is in the last scene as a caught bird fluttering in the net, with none of the high concern about yet saving her dignity that Mr Westland Marston gives her. She is all anxious dread when they seem to be binding her to the man and her disdainful suitor to the woman she and he have, in affected disdain of each other, professed to choose for mates. Mr Westland Marston makes her struggle yet to brave it out ; makes Periu bid the Count fix his eye on her while she repeats at the dictation of her father the form of betrothal to the other man ; makes her catch his eye, break down, cry out at the unsympathetic face of the knight to whom she is plighting herself; and in short, gives the British public something like the dose of clap-trap it is commomly considered to require. The German adapter, from whose text in this instance Mr Marston has departed, with better taste follows Moreto, who in this last scene showed only a woman in a tender tumult of distressful love, until Don Carlos has been admonished by the gracioso that he must now give her opportunity herself to loose the knot by which she is restrained. To the expectation that he will now plight his faith to his mock love he replies, therefore, that since he is the ‘Princess’s knight and wears her colours, he is not yet free to plight his troth elsewhere. He waits till she has formally released him from her service. Then the Princess herself plucking eagerly at the, knot where she is warned that she may loosen it, claims and obtains the word of both knights that they will abide by her decision. IIer decision is, that she belongs to him who has conquered Disdain with Disdain. And who is he? asks Carlos. With two little tender whispered words,-TusoIo,-—the softened woman timidly creeps forward and lays her heart of love down at his feet. Mrs Herman Vezin would have known how to give grace to such a close, if Mr Westland Marston had not resolved that the taste of the British public demands less delicate fare. And thus it seems that even our good dramatic poets, like our players, can fall into the mischievous error, against which we so often have protested, of adapting their work to an assumed standard of bad taste. Here we must stop for to-day, but we will not wait a Week to say that Mr Falconer's new play, N z'ght and Mom, at Dauair Lana is certainly the best he has yet written.
The following is a copy of the letter addressed by Sir George Grey to Mr Evans, M.P., in reply to the memorial of the magistrates of the county of Derby in the case of George Victor Townley:
“ Whitehall, J an. 8.—Sir,—I am direch by Secretary Sir George Grey to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 7th inst., transmitting a letter addressed to him by the magistrates of the county of Derby, whose signatures are attached to it. Sir George Grey has read that letter with the attention to which both the importance of the subject it refers to, and the persons from whom it proceeds, justly entitle it. In order to place the magistrates in full possession of the proceedings which have taken place with reference to the case of George Victor Townley, a copy of the correspondence between this oliice and the Lunacy Commissioners, together with two certificates of Townley’s insanity received by the Secretary of State, and of the order for the removal of the prisonerto Bethlem Hospital under the provisions of the statute 3 and 4 Vict., cap. 54, sec. 1, will be transmitted to you as soon as it can be prepared.
“ The magistrates will learn from this correspondence that it was in consequence of information conveyed to the Secretary of State by the learned judge before whom the prisoner was tried, that, in his opinion, a further inquiry as to the sanity of the prisoner was necessary, that the Lunacy Commissioners were requested by the Secretary of State to undertake the inquiry- Sir George Grey feels that it was impossible to refuse an inquiry so recommended by thejudge, and he is not aware that, under the circumstances of the case, he could have intrnsted the inquiry to more able or responsible persons, or to persons likely to conduct it with greater impartiality and freedom from any preconceived opinion or doubtful theories. The Commissioners’ report is among the papers which will be sent you wichthe least possible delay, but the Secretary of State was not called upon to decide on that report alone whether the sentence of the law ought to be executed or not, because at the some time that he received it. he received also a certificate, dated December 27, signed by three justices of the peace (one for the county and two for the borough of Derby) and two medical men, stating, in the terms required by law, that they had examined and inquired into
the mental state of the prisoner, and certifying that he was insane.
This was followed by a certificate to the same effect, dated the 29th of December, and signed by two justices of the peace for the county of Derby (one of them being the some who had signed the former certi— floats), and the same two medical men. Copies of these certificates are also among the papers which will be sent to you. Upon these certificates from four justices of the peace and two medical practitioners the prisoner, in accordance with the construction which has been uniformly placed on the section of the Act before mentioned, was ordered to be removed to Bethlem Hospital, the capital sentence being rospiied, but not commuted. The magistrates in their letter of the 5th inst. my, with reference to the inguiry made by two magistrates, aided by
The famous scene in the second act, where the.
I two medical men, that that inquiry did not, like all previous inquiries T of the same kind, originate with the gaol authorities, but was promoted I and conducted as a matter of professional business by Townley’s legal 2 adviser. Sir George Grey had no previous information that this was i the case, nor could he be in any way responsible for any irregularity -—if irregularity there was—in the proceedings. No person other than a magistrate could be admitted to examine the prisoner or to inquire into his mental state without the sanction of the visiting justices or of the Secretary of State ; and as the visiting justices must therefore-have been aware of the proceeding, and as no communication on the subject was received from them at the time, or has been received from them up to the present time by the Secretary of State, he could only presume that what was done was done with their knowledge and sanction. So far, however, as it concerned the steps to be taken by the Secretary of State, in conformity with the law, on the receipt of such a certificate, it was immaterial how the inquiry originated, provided the certificate was in accordance with the provisions of the statute.
"There is one other passage in the letter from the magistrates to which Sir George Grey thinks it rightto refer. They say that the effect 0f the respite of Townley and of his removal to a lunatic asylum ‘ has been to cause much dissatisfaction, and to create a feeling, greatly to be lamented, that there is one law for the rich and another for the poor; that justice has been turned aside by the power of money ; and that if Townley and his friends had been poor he would have been exceuted.‘ The magistrates may possess information as to the expenditure of money by Townley’s friends of which the Secretary of State has no knowledge ; nor is be aware of the manner in which the magistrates believe such money to have been expended. But the most satisfactory proof which can be given that the course taken with regard to Townley is one which it required no expenditure of money to obtain, and which would have been equally taken had Townley and his friends been poor, is a reference to a similar case which occurred the Spring Assizes held at Newcastle-on-Tyne, in 1862, when it man named Clark, himself a poor man, and with no friends who were not also poor, and in whose defence no counsel even was retained, was convicted of wilful murder and sentenced to death. In that case, as in the case of Townley, the learned judge before whom Clark was tried, in reporting the case to the Secretary of State, expressed his opinion that the verdict was right, but called the attention of the Secretary of State to the evidence as to the unsound state of mind of the prisoner at the time of the trial, as having, to use his own words, ‘so intensely important I bearing upon the question whether he ought to be executed.’ In consequence of this representation from the judge, an inquiry as to the insanity of the prisoner was directed by the Secretary of State, and the result in that case, as in the present, was his removal to a lunatic asylum. Sir George Grey trusts that this statement will tend to remove the impression which the magistrater say exists, and which they appear to have shared, that a similar course, under similar circumstances, would not be adopted in the case of a poor man asin the case of one whose friends had the power of expending money in his behalf. I am, &c., H. \VADDINGTON."
The Times of yesterday in publishing the remainder of the correspondence promised in Sir George Grey’s letter, thus summarises its contents: " We are in a position to place before the public this morning a complete history of the proceedings connected with the respite of George Victor Townley, and the case has acquired a character of such extraordinary importance that it cannot be too attentively observed. On the day following the conviction of the prisoner Mr Baron Martin, who had tried him, re-opencd the question by a communication to Sir George Grey, suggesting, but merely suggesting, a further inquiry into the convict's actual state of mind. The Judge's letter was not decisively worded. Of his own opinions, indeed, it cone veyed but this much—that he thought the conviction right, but as two medical witnesses at the trial had deposed ‘in the strongest manner ' lo the actual insanity of the prisoner as he stood at the bar, the Judge thought it right to ‘ oallthe attention ’ of the Home Secretary to the point thus raised. To this letter Sir George Grey, after three days’ consideraiion, replied in terms implying that he himself could see nothing in the report of the trial to call for fresh investigation, and he begged the Judge to give him his own impression on the subject. Mr Baron Marlin answered that he ‘could not say that he had formed any decided opinion on the point,‘ but that he thought there should be further inquiry. Thus moved, Sir George Grey addressed himself to the Commissioners in Lunacy, frankly avowing his conviction that the verdict was right, and that the prisoner had been sane at the time of the murder, but stating the question which had been since raised as tohis present sanity, and commending it to the consideration of the Commissioners. These gentlemen lost no time in proceeding to Derby and instituting the i quiry with which they had thus been charged. On the 28th of December hey made their Report. In this document they appear somewhat disposed to let Sir George Grey form an opinion for himself from the minutes of the proceedings which they submit to him, but they do communicate their own conclusions to the extent which the following words will indicate: ‘Iu view of the extravagant opinions thus deliberately professed by him (the convict), of his extraordinarily perverted moral sense, and of thehercditary taint alleged, and apparently proved, to have existed in the family of the prisoner’s grandmother, we cannot consider him to be of sound mind ; but his views ofright and wrong, false as they are, appear to have been coherently acted upon, and with a full sense of what they involved. He reasons now as he acted in committing the murder. Upon the point of his alleged belief in a conspiracy against him we pressed him very closely, but we could not satisfy ourselves that this was in the nature of a delusion.’ They close their Report in these terms: ‘Bcing of opinion, therefore, that the prisoner continues to be now in the some mental state as when he committed the murder, and underwent his trial, we think that, applying the law as laid down by Mr Baron Martin to this case, the prisoner George Victor Townley was justly coiivictcd.’ Such was the point to which the case was brought by the action of the Home Secretary taken upon the suggestion of the Judge. But by this time action had been taken in other quarters. On the day before the date of the,Commissioners’ Report a certificate was forwarded to Sir George Grey, signed by three justices of the peace and two medical practitioners, briefly testifying, in such language as a certain Act of Parliament demanded, that George Victor Townley was insane. And on the day after the Commissioners' Report a similar certificate was forwarded, signed by two justices of the peace, one of whom had signed the first certificate, and two medical practitioners, being identical with those acting in the first instance, to the same effect as before. There were, therefore, three Reports made in as many days—one, in the form of a certificate, on the 27th of December, another, from the Commissioners of Lunacy, on the 28th; anda third, in the shape, as it were, of an amended certificate, on the 29th. Why the last should have been sent it is not easy to see, unless it was thought better to comply exactly with the words of the statute, which spoke of ‘two' justices of the peace, neither more nor less, whereas the first certificate had been signed by three. In fact, it. was the latter of the two documents on which Sir George Grey acted, having, as is now known, no discretion in the matter. An Act of Parliament obliged him, on the receipt of suchZa certificate as was sent to him on the 29th of December,, to direct the removal of the convict from the gnol to a lunatic asylum, and consign him to a madhouse instead of leaving him to be executed. This obligation he simply discharged."
borough magistrates and two medical men of Derby, and myself. Mr Scott, the other county magistrate who signed the certificate of the 29th of December last, and who was to have signed the enclosed letter, has suddenly been called into Scotland for the purpose of attending his sister's funeral.—I have, &c., W. T. Cox. "
" To the Right Hon. Sir G. Grey, Bart., M.P., &c.—Sir,-We the undersigned justices of the peace for the county and borough of Derby, and medical men of Derby, who signed and forwarded to you two certificates as to the insanity of George Victor Townley, dated the 27th and 29th December last, having had our attention called to a. memorial, signed by certain ‘magistratcs of the county of Derby’ dated the 5th inst., beg to solicit your consideration of the following facts. Upon the trial of the prisoner, Mr H. F. Gisborne and Mr J. H. Sims, the surgeon and governor of the gaol in which the prisoner was confined, deposed to the fact of the prisoner being insane at that pcriod,-—viz., on the lltli of December, and the Rev. H. Moore (chaplain of the gaol) made a written report of the prisoner’s insanity in his Minute-book, for the inspection of the visitingjustices early in the month of December, and we have been credibly informed and believe that, notwithstanding such evidence of the surgeon and governor and report of the chaplain, none of the visiting justices or county magistrates, excepting ourselves, have visited the prisoner or taken any action whatever upon such evidence or report. We beg further to state that we entered upon the inquiry as to the prisoner’s mental condition from a more sense of duty, and we took considerable pains to ascertain the true state of his mind. On the one hand, we believe our certificates to be perfectly true, while, on the other, we are assured that none of the county magistrates who have signed the memorial of the 5th inst. have any personal knowledge of the subject matter of our certificates. Neither the prisoner's adviser nor any of his friends were present at our examinations, and they have in no way influenced our judgment, or attempted to do so.—We have, &c., W. T. Cox, J.P. for the Borough of Derby; J. B. TORIAN, J.P. for the Borough of Derby; Tnos. Ron, Mayor of the Borough of Derby; Hannr Goons, MB. and M.R.C.S.; Tnoiuis Hmwoon, Surgeon, 850., and Medical Officer to the Derby Union."
According to the Draft Greco seems to have been chosen by Mazaini to be the chief of the conspiracy against the Emperor discovered or invented by the French police, whose public character being worse than Mazzini's places them of course first under suspicion, and lmperatori and Saglio were sdjoined to him. Trsbucco, who has been condemned at Paris and at London as a thief and a swindler, is said to have solicited by a letter to Mauini the honour of becoming one of Greco’s lieutenants. The four left Lugano, bringing with them about 4,000f., handed by Muzzini to Greco ; also poignards, revolvers, percussion caps, and explosive bombs. They are about the size of a man‘s hand, and have twelve fuse-holes, intended to receive as many oops. Eight of these bombs were found at the time of the seizure. After passing through Switzerland and France the four are said to have :11de in Paris on Christmas day. They thought it best to separate, reside in different hotels, and frequently change their lodgings. Several days were passed by them in ascertaining the places to which the Emperor was likely to go, and the hour at which he would leave the Palace. They consequently repaired to the Tuileriss, to the Champs-Elyse“, and to the Bois do Boulogne. In the lining of Greco‘s trousers is said to have been liiddeu s writing from the hand of Mazzini. According to the explanations which they have very freely given, each man was to carry a poignard, a revolver, and two bombs. The eight bombs were to be thrown into or under the Emperor's carriage. If his Majesty should not have been injured by projectiles the four Italians were to take advantage of the confusion, rush forward, and use their revolvers and poignards. The examination of these daggers showed that the blades bore the trace of a very subtle poison. “ Their money," says the Gazette dc: Tribwiaus: " was all expended in much extravagance, as at one dinner the four spent upwards of 200C They did not wish to expose themselves to the risk of being without resources, in case of being obliged after the crime to fly from Paris, and they therefore wrote to Mauini at the address he had given them. They had not received any answer to their letter at the time of their arrest. The truth of the declarations made is proved by another circumstance. A letter was seized at the post-office addressed to Greco, written by Mazzioi, and enclosing 500f. Greco declares that it was that money which they waited for, and that if had arrived sooner they should have accomplished their project. Saglio, who is only twenty-two years of age, is the only one of the prisoners who appears to show any repentance."
A Paris correspondent of the Emancipation of Brussels relates in the following tcrfns the manner in which the conspirators are said to have been arrested:
“ On first arriving in Paris they stopped at the Hotel do Lyon ct d’Athenes, 185 Rue St Honorc', but in a few days they separated, and Trabucoo and lmperatori took a. furnished room at 4 Rue Croix des Fetus-Champs. l‘hey were left comparatively free, in order that their accomplices might be caught with them, but all their movements were carefully watched. At length, on Sunday, the 3rd of January, 3'1. Lagrange, police-ofiiccr, was charged to arrest them, and he went to the house in the Rue Croix des Pent-Champs, accompanied by some agents. He was aware that the two men were in their room, but knowing that they were well-armed, he thought it advisable to wait until they came out, in order to avoid bloodshed. At about four o’clock Trabucco left the house, and was immediately secured, and at the same moment some of the agents went up to the room to arrest lmperawri. Another party of police at about the some time captured Greco and the other conspirator at 185 Rue St Honoré, as already stated."
Signor Mazzini has written the following letter, wholly denying his alleged participation in the conspiracy :
Accusations of every description have been, since the arrest of four Italians at Paris charged with an attempt against Louis Napoleon, heaped on me by the organs of the French Government, and repeated by the English press. It has always been my known habit to not discuss accusations put forth against me by avoWed enemies, and I feel a special dislike to do so when the accusations come from the agents of a man who, as far as in him lies, is by mere brutal force depriving my country of the unity which she claims, and making of Rome the basis of operation of the brigandage infesting the south of Italy. Yielding, however, to solicitations of dear friends, I do declare: Thatl never did instigate anybody to kill Louis Napoleon. That I never did give to any man bombs, air guns, revolvers, or daggers for that purpose. That Trabuco, lmperatori, and Saglio are entirely unknown to me. That, therefore, the meeting summoned st Lugano, the absurd place of under-lieutenant given to Imperatori in a brigade of four men, and the giving of the photographs to the men, are absolute falsehoods. That in photographs, with my autograph at the bottom, are sold for the “ enice Emancipation Fund" at the office of the Unild Italiana, at Milan, and elsewhere. That no letter, with or without money, has ever been addressed by me to Greco in Paris. Greco I know. Hundreds, I might say thousands, of young men belonging to our National Party of Action, are known to me. Greco is an enthusiastic patriot, who took an active pdrt in the enterprises of 1860 and 1861 in the south of Italy; and he has had, as such, contact with me. Any note of mine in his possession, if there be any, must, however, belong to at least nine or ten months back. Enough in reply to accusations hitherto merely grounded on French police reports.—I are, &c.,