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to say,_Who is not ashamed to be the father of it? Or, when grown to maturity, and installed in the throne of power
who would dare to trust himself to its withering influence! Back, then, and take refuge in that house which has so long fed and comforted you, and under that throne which has so long protected you. I pretend not to quote. Two long hours and a half did Mr. Croker profane this handiwork of the ministry, and croak out his ill-omened prophecies of its ill-starred destiny
But there came another after him who in a word could tell where the power of this spoiler lay; whose wand could restore to the creature, thus abused, its proper life, beauty, and majesty, by a single touch. It was Mr. Stanley, the Secretary of State for Ireland. At one o'clock the bill stood forth again in its own comeliness-a thing not to be despised—the hope of England. And the House adjourned.
Mr. Macauley is a man-green of his youth—but ripe, fully ripe, in all the qualities of brilliancy and power, as a debater. Brougham was his schoolmaster and chief patron. The latter seems to have been aware of the promising powers of this youth, and took an interest in the direction of his education. In a letter of Mr. Brougham to Mr. Macauley's father, which by some means has been exposed, and which makes one of the secrets of Lord Brougham's history, by no means discreditable to himself, it appears that Mr. Brougham advised and insisted that forensic and parliamentary reputation could be purchased only by a most laborious preparation, and at last the recitation of speeches. He confessed that he had attained his own eminence in that way, that he owed his reputation before the public to such efforts. I do not think, indeed, that Lord Brougham is doomed to such severity of toil for the production of his later and frequent public speeches. Although I doubt not his great ones are greatly conned-such, for instance, as his effort on the night of the rejection of the Reform Bill. Its principal parts, its coruscations of wit and irony, its capital arguments, its stirring and tremendous appeals, and not unlikely the genuflexion of the finale, were all contrived and framed, fitted in their places, and resolved upon, before he entered the House. But such a man as he, with such resources ever at his command, of such custom in debate, of such endless volubility of tongue, as much at home and as careless in the House of Lords as any careless boy in his most careless place—such a man may well trust himself to the filling up of a speech of five, or even of seven hours length.
But he whose reputation hangs yet doubtful before the public, of whom expectation is on tiptoe, a young favourite, but not yet planted and grown in the affections, like the majestic oak in the earth, must be cautious. He must make short speeches, and every one he makes must be better than the last. He must not trust himself, even with all his genius, to what is called the spur of the moment. He may be quickened by it—but he must not depend upon it. Such indubitably was the premeditated, the resolved course of Thomas Babbington Macauley, under the advice of his grand tutor, and by the approval of his own good sense. He took up his position, and was seen to stand in it, after all, without being obliged to make a reply. It would not be safe for him to reply. And, fortunately for him, there was no need of it. Mr. Macauley was the star of the House of Commons while he was there ; and when he shall have made his fortune in India, he will probably return to figure again in that place, and to hold some high trust in the government of his country.
Take the following specimen as a coup de main of Mr. Macauley, in answer to the objection, that Reform, begotten and urged in public excitement, must be diseased and unsafe : "The arguments of these gentlemen," said Macauley, “be they modified how they may out of all their variations, could be reduced to this plain and simple dilemma:- When the people are noisy, it is unsafe to grant Reform. When they are quiet, it is unnecessary. But the time has at last come when reformers must legislate fast, because bigots would not legislate early,—when reformers are compelled to legislate in excitement, because bigots would not do so at a more auspicious moment. Bigots would not walk with sufficient speed, nay, they could not be prevailed upon to move at all; and now the reformers must run for it. · By fair means or by foul, through Parliament or over Parliament, the question of reform must and will be carried.” What could be more pithy, more energetic, more tremendously prophetic, than this ?—And how must a man's soul swell out with greatness, when, standing in such circumstances, and agitating such a momentous theme, he knows, and all who hear him know, that every word he utters of the past is fact ;--and himself knows also, and all know by infallible prescience, that what he predicts of the future is just about to come to pass :-"through Parliament or over Parliament, it must and will be carried.”
Against the Bill, in the House of Commons, Sir Robert Peal was the most respectable opponent. Mr. Croker and Sir Charles, as usual, made the greatest figure—both clever -but it is difficult, all things considered, to respect them for any thing else than their acknowledged abilities. Croker was strong in his own assumed premises--but always unfair. Sir Charles Wetherell is as eccentric as he is learned-one would hope not vicious by nature;-exhibiting new phases in argument whenever he shows himself at all (and it is said he made only sixty-two speeches on the pas
sage of the Reform Bill through the house), but to the eye, alas! always the same : He wants a pair of suspendershis nurse must have died before he learned to dress himself
—and his schoolmaster, as one would judge from his manners, must have been a clown.
“ The Methodists," said Sir Charles one day, as he had occasion to allude to them in the case of Lady Hewley's charity—“ Wesleyan Methodists, I believe they are called, are distinguished by holding to the doctrine of election," &c. Some one jogged Sir Charles. “O yes," he repeated," the doctrine of election.” (Laughter.) He was jogged again. “ Yes, yes," added Sir Charles again, “ you are right-the doctrine of election.” (Great laughter.) Sir Charles was then told audibly that he must reverse his position. “Well, then,” said Sir Charles, “ have it which way you please. If not elected, they ought to be; for they are the best people among us.”
THE WELSH. Welsh Character-Poetry—Preaching The Martyr dog. The Welsh are a very religious people--more so than the Scotch, or the people of New-England. There is perhaps no other Christian people in the world who manifest so much religious susceptibility, or who can, as a body, be brought so much under its power. They are about a million of people, spread over a surface of 150 miles by 80, or 5,200,000 acres, parts of which present some of the finest mountain scenery in Great Britain. The Welsh are relics of the ancient Britons, who fled to the country which they now occupy when Britain was invaded by the Saxons. They continued an independent people under their own kings till 1283, when their last prince, Llewellyn, being vanquished and slain, they were united to England under Edward I. The oldest son of the king of England—the first was Edward II. has always been created Prince of Wales, to satisfy the feelings of the Welsh of their right in the monarchy, &c., Edward II. having been born among them.
The Welsh, for the most part, speak their own language, and cultivate Welsh literature. They are proud of their antiquity, and think that in this particular they are one of the most venerable nations in the world. Their attachment to their own language is remarkable; and I am inclined to the opinion which they profess, that it is capable of being employed with a power over the feelings and passions, with which the English language bears no comparison. The effects of their poetry and preaching would seem to prove this. Their most cultivated men have a disgust for the English, compared with their own native tongue, notwithstanding they may be as much used to one as the other-more especially if they are poetic in their temperament.
Poetry and religion may be said to have a home in the affections of the Welsh, unrivalled elsewhere.
THE “EEISTEDDFOD,” or SITTING OF THE BARDS. As among some of the ancient nations, poetry is still cul· tivated in Wales as a profession. There are many men of
a very high order of intellect and of general culture, who devote themselves exclusively to this art. Welsh poetry is especially patronised by the nobility and gentry of the principality, and by the royal family of England. Annually there is held an “Eeisteddfod," or Sitting of the Bards, a grand literary festival, at which some members of the royal family are always present, with a representation of the literati of England, and the most cultivated men of the principality. The prizes for the best productions in Welsh poetry are distributed on the occasion; and the most excellent of the bards is publicly crowned by the representative of the royal family. Some of the productions are recited by the authors, and received with more or less, and often with great enthusiasm, according to their merits. Sometimes the same piece is read in three or four several languagesas, for example, in Welsh, in English, in Greek, and in Latin
for the purpose of comparing the beauties and power of the different tongues; and the enthusiasm of the assembly always decides in favour of the Welsh. On these occasions at least, there is nothing like that.
THE “CYMANFA”Are great religious assemblies, or convocations, held for sev. eral days continuously in different parts of the principality, in the summer season. On account of the great numbers who assemble, they being from 10,000 to 20,000, they are obliged of necessity to hold their meetings out of doors. They are, I suppose, not unlike the camp-meetings of America, being generally larger assemblies. " I have heard much said of the power of the Welsh preachers over these assemblies; and certainly, from all accounts, it must be very great. All the world has heard of the Welsh Jumpers; but I do not speak of them; they are pretty much over and done, as all animal ecstasies of that kind are ordinarily transient. But, notwithstanding, the poetic temperament of the Welsh is yet exceedingly susceptible of being influenced by religion; the power of their own language, employed upon the most sublime and touching of all themes, overcomes them; and their preachers have a dominion over their affections which is irresistible. I am speaking now, of course, of the ordinary instrumentality of language, in its power over the mind and heart, when the themes are advantageous for effect; and we know very well that with Christians who love religion, and with those who have had a Christian education and respect religion, there are no themes, properly handled, which are calculated to have so much dominion over the soul as those of the Evangelical volume.
The Welsh are a people by themselves; they are bound together by the strong national and sympathetic cords of society; and there is no common bond among them that is so strong as that of religion. With the politics of the empire, happily, they have little to do; but in religion all are taught. The poison of modern infidelity has hardly found its passage into Wales. The people generally believe in Christianity, and respect it; and from their easy, poetic, and religious susceptibilities, there is more or less of superstition among them, as might be expected in their comparatively rude and uncultivated condition.
The common centres of their society are the churches and chapels; but the Cymanfa, or great religious convocations, are what they make the most of. These seem to have taken the place of “the feasts of the saints," as they used to be called in England, being of Roman Catholic origin, and which are still observed in many parts of England, in honour of the particular saints after whom the parish churches are called, as, for example, St. John's; St. Mark's; St. Nicholas's ; &c. &c. I remember once in Yorkshire to have observed great crowds of people about the public houses on the Sabbath, apparently amusing themselves as if it were a holyday. On inquiring the cause, I was told it was Saint's Day; and that it would extend to the third or fourth day of the week-at which time the common people are accustomed to have great mirth. All Episcopal churches in our country, I believe, are called after some of the calendar saints, but fortunately this particular custom has not been transferred here; and it appears to have greatly declined in England.
I was told by a Welsh minister, who is good authority, that the Cymanfa of Wales have succeeded to these “Saints' Days," or Festivities; that the people, who had been accustomed for ages to assemble in each parish on the calendar week appointed for the purpose, for social and merry occupations, having generally fallen off from the established church, demanded a substitute; and that the Cymanfa are really and truly the things that have taken the place of them. The Cymanfa, however, although they are still great social occasions, on which the people in the vicinity of the place of meeting lay themselves out for the display and ex