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Last Victory of Heera Singh.


under protection of a flag of truce, was deputed to make inquiries respecting the holy man. He advanced into the centre of the rebel army where the Gooroo lay bleeding on the ground. Disputes and altercations immediately took place, and Ittur Singh fearing that if negotiations were entered on, his own safety would be compromised, drew a pistol and shot the officer. His own death immediately followed. He was cut down by the Sikhs, and the carnage recommenced with great fury. As Kashmeera Singh himself, however, soon fell, leaving the insurgents altogether without a leader, they dispersed and fled. Many were cut to pieces in the rout, and others lost their lives in attempting to cross the Beeah. The heads of Ittur and Kashmeera Singh having been cut off were sent to Lahore, where they arrived, together with intelligence of the victory, about eleven o'clock at night. An extremely curious and characteristic anecdote is related of the dying Gooroo Bhaee Wyar Singh. When he perceived that his end was at hand, he gave some of his attendants orders to go to his house, and taking the letters of the Sikh Sirdars to strew them on the plain, that all, high and low, might see the faithlessness of the Sikhs. 'Lo!' said the Gooroo, thus do the chiefs of this fickle and perjured race treat those whom they pretend to honour; in this way did they invite Suchet Singh, and for filthy lucre sacrifice him to the blood-thirsty tyrant; and now they have, in a similar manner, invited Ittur Singh and the princes of the house of Ranjit, as well as myself, and behold they have also sacrificed us. Let me,' he continued, 'be thrown into the river that my body may be borne by its stream far from this polluted land. According to his orders, his body was cast into the river, and the bag of letters conveyed to Laba Singh.

By this victory the position of Heera Singh was strengthened considerably. The officers of the army, finding that all attempts to overthrow him proved ineffectual, began to cultivate sentiments of subordination, and to look more narrowly to their own interests. Few competitors for power now remained to contest the first place with Heera. His uncle, Gholâb held and still holds himself aloof; so likewise does Lena Singh Majiteeah, and if the widow of Suchet Singh be collecting troops and preparing to avenge her husband, it is probable that she will wait for some turn of affairs that may seem to favour her designs. The youthful maharajah, Dhulip Singh, has since had his life put in jeopardy by the small-pox, and the danger in which he was placed imparted a fresh impulse to speculation in India. His complete recovery, however, leaves things precisely as they were. The Indian correspondents of our journals at home, though greatly prone to indulge

in conjecture, evidently find themselves at fault in the case of the Punjab. Unwilling to give Heera Singh credit for the superior abilities which he has unquestionably displayed, they account for the success which has attended his measures by the riches of his treasury, and persuade themselves that when those fail, his rule will be at an end, forgetting that Lahore has revenues, and that if money be paid away with one hand, it is received with the other. On the subject of our own relations with the Punjâb, they incline sometimes to one opinion, sometimes to another, though all appear to be possessed by the conviction that the country must eventually be ours. Meanwhile, no very fixed notion prevails among them, as to what does or does not constitute a casus belli. In our opinion, as we have already observed, amply sufficient grounds of war exist, notwithstanding which, circumstances may render it prudent to wait until we are absolutely precipitated into the struggle by imperious necessity. It should, however, be borne in mind that the Punjab is worth conquering, that it produces an ample revenue, that all the agricultural population earnestly longs for our interference, that the possession of it will restore to us, in great part at least, our lost influence in Central Asia, and that in India itself it will produce a salutary effect upon the minds of all native rulers.

ART. V.-Excursion through the Slave States, from Washington on the Potomac to the Frontier of Mexico; with Sketches of Popular Manners and Geological Notices. By G. W. FEATHERSTONHAUGH, F.R.S., F.G.S. 2 vols. John Murray.

IT is a common complaint amongst Americans that the books published by Englishmen concerning them are hasty, shallow, and exaggerated. This complaint cannot be maintained against the work before us. Mr. Featherstonhaugh has resided thirty years in America. He at least must be allowed to know something of the country.

The excursion described in these volumes takes a very interesting range, from Washington across the Alleghanies-through Tennessee, Kentucky, and Arkansas, to the Red River, on the borders of Texas, returning (after a peep into a Prairie) by way of New Orleans and South Carolina into Virginia. Mr. Featherstonhaugh's principal object appears to have had reference to the geology of the districts through which he passed; but he did not limit himself to scientific investigations. He made ample notes of the social and domestic life of the people-their character, habits

Americans Right, and All the World Wrong.


and institutions. To this portion of the publication we propose to confine ourselves; not because the geological details are deficient in value or importance, but because the actual condition of the people in the country south of the Potomac is, comparatively, so little known as to render our author's close view of it a matter of some novelty to the English reader-especially curious at a moment when the question of slavery occupies so large a space in public


But before we enter on the work itself, a word to the Americans on their national tenderness, which shrinks so sensitively from the approach of criticism.

It seems that all English travellers who visit the United States. fall, somehow, into an awkward and ungrateful habit of villifying the people. There is not a single exception to this universal practice. And men of all parties, who differ from each other upon every other imaginable subject, exhibit a most marvellous agreement upon this. The unanimity of whigs, tories and radicals upon the one topic of American society is a thing to wonder at and reflect upon. What is the source of this surprising unity of sentiment amongst people otherwise opposed? What is there in the soil of America to make men shake hands over it, who are ready to clench their fists at each other at home?

We take it for granted that any one, but an American, would acknowledge that different men who, seeing an object in a great variety of aspects, and from every possible point of sight, agree in their representations of it, must, upon the whole, be tolerably correct. Now, the American asserts that they are all false. He traces the English opinion of American life to every cause but the right one: prejudice, jealousy, revenge, fear, hope, ignorance, everything except-American life itself. He can discern nothing in American life but subjects for eternal panegyric. His happy vanity embalms even the vices of the model democracy, and raises slavery into a sort of beatitude. It would be perfectly absurd to attempt to reason with the Americans about America. We do not contemplate any thing so hopeless. But we think it right, nevertheless, to show them that there are two sides to the question. The American press teems with abuse of England, and English politicians and men of letters. There are no terms too foul for the gentlemen who conduct the American periodicals, when they touch upon Great Britain. They exhaust Billingsgate in the animated vigour of their vituperation, and transcend the slang of Rag Fair in the oriental variety of their nicknames. Are they not quits with us? If we write of them with the scrupulous and offended tastes of gentlemen, surely they take their revenge upon us in the unlimited latitude of the opposite character.

"These causes," says a writer in a recent number of the 'Democratic Review,' speaking of the American struggle for independence and the war of 1812,-" these causes are unquestionably sufficient to account for the string of atrocious libels, the torrent of filthy abuse, poured out against us by the British press and 'London Quarterly Review,' without the assumption that there is one word of truth in them, or that they furnish any justification whatever for such a tissue of gross indiscriminate charges against the character of the people of the United States." The reader will naturally suppose that the writer is referring to some particular statements of the English press, and that the "string of atrocious libels," the "torrent of filthy abuse," the "tissue of gross indiscriminate charges," must possess some tangible application. No such thing. These "strings," and "torrents," and "tissues," are pure abstractions, conjured up to give the writer an opportunity of saying that Englishmen abuse America out of spite and vengeance, because she threw off their yoke upwards of sixty years ago! He might as well say that we abuse her because she grows tobacco. Why, if the man had a grain of sense in his head he ought to have known, that the only thing for which England really applauds America is the noble stand she made for libertyand that the thing for which England condemns her is the base use to which she has degraded it. But let us see how this writera very mild and feeble specimen of his class-can get up little atrocities on his own account.

After inflicting a swinging tirade upon Mr. Charles Dickens, he proceeds to make the following extraordinary statement respecting that gentleman.


"He is probably soured by disappointment, since the honour of being read and admired by a large portion of the people of the United States, cannot, as his own lamentable experience is now teaching him, keep an author out of jail! * * Poor Dickens! he is now, it is said, in the King's Bench Prison, after having contributed so much to the amusement of his fellow-creatures; and one might make this circumstance a theme for declaiming on the ingratitude of mankind, as well as the hard fate of genius, were it not a solemn truth that neither money nor patronage can ward off the inflexible destiny of imprudence and extravagance !!"

This is a very small illustration of the way in which American writers pander to the national taste. Sometimes they go considerably beyond this trifling touch of malignant scandal. To say that Mr. Dickens was in the King's Bench (there is no such jail' by the way) at a time when he was really on his road to Italy, is not much, compared with the thunder which they sometimes roll over the Atlantic at the wits of the mother country.

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Mr. Featherstonhaugh's Route.

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Since then they have so little compunction in fabricating charges against us, they must try to endure, with what philosophy they may, the plain statements we put on record concerning them. It is useless to fall into a passion and rail at us. The question is, are our statements true? The Democratic Review' falls foul of the Quarterly,' because it accuses the Americans of gouging, spitting, ranting, roaring, cheating, lynching." It would be more to the purpose to prove that the accusation is unfounded. Can the Democratic deny that these practices prevail almost universally in America? If it cannot-as of course it cannot, except under shelter of the same conscience which enabled it to consign Mr. Dickens to the King's Bench-would it not be wise in the Democratic' to suffer the accusation with prudent silence? Mouthing will do nothing for Uncle Sam.` It will neither vindicate his character, nor pay his debts.

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With this preliminary hint, we return to Mr. Featherstonhaugh. Passing through Maryland, en route to the Alleghany ridges, the traveller finds whole colonies of Germans, ignorant but industrious people, who accumulate a great deal of money, and exercise, consequently, paramount influence in their immediate localities. These Germans entertain a wise distrust of bank paper, and hoard their profits in hard money; a course of proceeding which enables them to control the elections in the neighbouring state of Pennsylvania, where they are very numerous, and where they frequently place the government in the hands of their own party. It is only justice to the native Americans to give them the benefit of Mr. Featherstonhaugh's opinion, that it is to these Germans the dishonourable conduct of the state of Pennsylvania, in relation to the non-payment of its debts, is fairly attributable. But, if it be so, what becomes of the integrity of the rest of the population who have acquiesced in the fraud? or of other repudiating states, where there are no Germans?

At a place in the Mountains called the Warm Springs, our traveller fell in with a perfect specimen of a Virginian landlord. This worthy personage was one Colonel Fry, who kept the best hotel in the place. The first appearance of the hotel is striking— a tolerably large building with a portico. The moment the travellers arrive, their luggage is carried off to make sure of them, and then they are left to shift for themselves.

“A fiddle was screaking in one of the rooms; and we found ourselves on the portico, in the midst of a number of queer-looking ladies, with and without tournures, corseted up in all sorts of ways, and their hair dressed in every possible form. The gentlemen, in greater numbers, were chewing, spitting, and smoking, with an ease that evinced their superiority, and all staring at us in the most determined manner.


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