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interrupted by a revulsion of cheerfulness. Willingly do we close our paper with words of good omen. Before he could venture to publish his last volume, Freiligrath was compelled to put himself beyond the reach of royal vengeance, and he is now living in exile in Brussels. Whether or not his foot shall ever again press his native soil, we trust the time will come when truth, honour, honesty, and genuine, not spurious, loyalty shall cease to be regarded as crimes against the state in any land where the German tongue is spoken.
Der Wisperwind, der Wisperwind,
Ja, immer, immer nur stromauf
Er macht sich auf wo Hütten stehn;
Er saus't und wüthet um sie her,
Ja, heiter wird auf ihn der Tag;
Von unten keck nach oben auch;
The Whisperwind is known to all
The banks of Rhine at morning seek,
Aye, piping, whistling, loud and shrill,
Where cabins stand you'll hear it sound,
A saucy wind! 'twill budge no inch
Aye, clear and cloudless grows the day;
Another whisper hath been heard!
And upward, upward, bold and strong,
To whistle round a monarch's towers.
ART. VI.-Rambles and Recollections of an Indian Official. By Lieutenant-Colonel W. H. SLEEMAN, of the Bengal Army. 2 vols. London: Hatchard and Son. 1844.
THE popularity of Indian topics is increasing rapidly. Not a month, scarcely a week, passes without bringing along with it some new work on Indian topography, manners, or politics. The growth of the interest which, as a people, we take in Eastern subjects bears a very close analogy to the growth of our empire in the East. At first it was exceedingly feeble. Few cared to know what was doing in those remote regions, to bring intelligence from which required the lapse of more than half a year. The news, in fact, was already old before it reached us. We, therefore, troubled ourselves comparatively little about it, and exhausted our attention on matters which, though of much smaller dimensions, eclipsed the far greater objects lying at a distance. By degrees the circle of our power in India was enlarged, and its augmentation was accompanied by an enlarged sympathy at home. A sort of indefinite consciousness pervaded the public mind, that we had sown the seeds of great things in Asia, and might expect some day, no one exactly knew how or when, to behold them ripen into the glorious harvest of empire. Out of this feeling a particular department of our literature sprang up. A connexion
was established between India and Great Britain which, obviously promising to be permanent, suggested to speculative men the necessity of explaining its origin, and pointing out how it might be rendered most profitable to both countries. For a while the class of persons affected by these speculations was exceedingly small. It required much leisure and severe habits of study to be able to comprehend the vast fabric of Indian society, with its strange
and mysterious religion, its intricate system of castes, its various forms of government, its peculiar civilisation, the mixture which it exhibits of refinement and barbarism, its extraordinary population at once heterogeneous and uniform, its history losing itself in the obscurity of the fabulous ages. Writers, however, persevered, and readers gradually presented themselves. One topic first and then another was investigated and explained. People perceived there was beauty and grandeur where at first they could discover nothing but a chaos of uncouth forms; and a sympathy was created for that modification of humanity which peculiar influences have invested with a hue of bronze. In this way we have arrived imperceptibly at the conviction, that the Hindús are our fellow-subjects, we might now perhaps almost say our fellowcountrymen, since India and England are only different parts of the same empire which, connected together by the ocean, studs the surface of the globe with large spaces rendered healthy and populous by industry, and radiant with the light of freedom.
We are now perhaps in danger of remaining in ignorance of many things connected with India, from the notion that because much has been written, our knowledge is already sufficiently extensive. In reality, however, we have a great deal still to learn, as any one who reads Colonel Sleeman's' Rambles and Recollections' may perceive. No doubt some topics are dwelt upon in these volumes which have already occupied the pens of other writers; but mingled with these are many curious revelations of Indian society, which will probably surprise even those who consider themselves best acquainted with the East. It is implied in this that Colonel Sleeman is an acute and careful observer. He is much more. United with remarkable abilities, we find in him a forbearing and tolerant disposition, a keen sense of what is due to the subject races of India, and a generous desire to make amends to them, by kindness and good government, for what they may have lost on the score of national independence. For this reason we regard it as a duty strongly to recommend his work to the public. To say that it is replete with information of the most valuable kind, would not be to state half its merits; because, while enlarging the sphere of our knowledge, and correcting the judgment, it perpetually entertains the fancy with rich and brilliant pictures, stores the memory with lively anecdotes, and warmly interests all the better feelings of our nature in behalf of the Hindús. It has been made, we believe, a reproach against Colonel Sleeman, that he has followed no strict method in the arrangement of his materials. In some sense this may be admitted to be a fault, though the general reader will scarcely object to it; since, through what is deemed a delinquency against the ordinary rules of art, the object of all art has
been attained, which is at once to administer instruction and delight.
Notwithstanding what has been said, we are far from adopting, on all subjects, the views of Colonel Sleeman, who is often most whimsically inconsistent. No man can be more thoroughly convinced than he that our government is the source of innumerable blessings to the people of India. He seizes upon every occasion that presents itself to reiterate, that it is the best system of rule they have ever known. Nay, he proves it by unanswerable arguments, and undeniable facts, and assures us, that the better and more enlightened portion of the natives frankly acknowledge it. From which might be inferred, that Colonel Sleeman advocates the extinction of those Hindú and Mohamedan despotisms which still deform the face of society in India, and inflict so much misery upon their subjects. Here, however, our author's humanity forsakes him. He ceases to be the friend of the Hindús, and stands forward, according to his own views, exclusively English. He would not have us extend the advantages of our rule to every part of India, for the most extraordinary of all reasons, that it would deprive our own subjects of opportunity for comparing their condition with that of their neighbours, and feeling, by contrast, how much happier they are. This is an atrocious fallacy, which assumes various forms according to the temper of those who put it forward. We have, in former articles, exposed its wickedness when made use of, to show that the native governments ought to be suffered to exist in order to supply us with something to fight with, and keep the bayonets of our sipahis from rusting. It assumes a new phase in Colonel Sleeman's theory, but is the same fallacy still. He fancies and endeavours to persuade his reader that the people of India would not be able to appreciate good government or know when they were kindly treated, if they had not perpetually before their eyes the detestable examples of oppression and tyranny supplied by the native states. His arguments, stated in his own language, are as follows:
“There are two reasons why we should leave these two small native states under their own chiefs, even when the claim to the succession is feeble or defective; first, because it tends to relieve the minds of other native chiefs from the apprehension, already too prevalent among them, that we desire, by degrees, to absorb them all, because we think our government would do better for the people; and, secondly, because, by having them as a contrast, we afford to the people of India the opportunity of observing the superior advantages of our rule.
"""Tis distance lends enchantment to the view' in governments as well as in landscapes, and if the people of India, instead of the living proofs of what perilous things native governments, whether Hindú or