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give of him, prepare one to see a miserable pigmy; hollow-eyed, yellow. skinned, lantern-jawed, with a quantity of lank hair, and a nose of enormous proportions. But, though of low stature-perhaps five feet five or six--his figure is well proportioned, his features are handsome, complexion rather sallow, hair very dark, cut short, and without powder. He has fine eyes, full of spirit and intelligence, a firm, severe mouth, indicating a stern and inflexible will—in a word, you see in his countenance the master-mind; in his bearing, the man born to rule.”
Mr. Jackson noted the reactionary symptoms in social fashions, and contrasts with the slovenliness still conspicuous at Madame Fouché's receptions, the advancing decorum and ceremony at the Court of the First Consul. Fouché himself impressed him as the most remarkable personage on the scene next to Bonaparte. “In a certain power of dramatic effect he rivalled the First Consul himself. He draped himself, so to say, in a mystery of terror, till every one, and especially the English visitors, seemed to have believed that half Paris was filled with his myrmidons. Mr. Jackson was solemnly cautioned that all French teachers and valets acted as his spies, and that he has now under his direction in Paris forty organized Jacobin clubs, by whose means he could put in motion an armed mob of eight thousand men."" Later on we have a very vivid description of the bombardment of Copenhagen, of which the writer was an eye-witness.
Of the “ Letters and Journals of Lord Elgin ” Mr. Walrond has performed his task as editor with remarkable judgment and skill. Lord Elgin was one of those men who, born into the highest rank in English social life, deliberately relinquish in their career every thought save that of being their country's servant. There are aristocrats who “ live at home at ease," and who may do excellent work in their generation, while enjoying the privileges of their position; and there are those who live a life of exile for the sake of power or of duty. In Lord Elgin's case, duty seems to have been the one guiding motive of his life. As he tried to impress on his young son, as the principle of his race, it was his practice first to think what it was right to do, afterwards only what it might be pleasant to do. “He seemed utterly incapable of regarding any subject except with a view to the interests of his country," wrote an intimate friend concerning him. Jamaica, Canada, China, and India were successively the theatres where his busy life was passed. Few and brief were his intervals of home rest. In Canada, where he was Governor-General from 1847 to 1854, he had occasion to show his fearlessness of responsibility by giving his assent to the Compensation Bill, which gave such dire offence to the Canadian Tories after the Rebellion, instead of reserving. it, as he was urged to do, for the consideration of the Ministry at home, and so shifting to their shoulders the burden of unpopularity. Another instance of the same quality was his resolving to lend Lord Canning, for the suppression of the Indian Mutiny, the troops with which he had been entrusted for the purposes of his mission in China: thus postponing for six months, and it might have been altogether giving up, the prospect of credit and success for himself, for the sake of what he conceived to be a more vital concern to his country.
Lord Elgin's Chinese journals are still interesting, notwithstanding that the story has been told by other hands, and that China is no longer an unfamiliar land to English travellers. The most striking feature in them is
the way in which his hatred of anything like oppression of a population, whom he could not regard as in any way responsible for the acts which he was commissioned to avenge, was tempered by his sense of the inutility of half measures. “I have seen,” he writes, “ more to disgust me with my fellow-countrymen than I saw during the whole course of my previous life, since I have found them in the East among populations too timid to resist and too ignorant to complain. I have an instinct in me which loves righteousness and hates iniquity, and all this keeps me in a perpetual boil.” But while contemplating the bombardment of Canton, an unresisting town with a million inhabitants, he writes, “It was impossible for me to do otherwise than as I have done. I could not have abandoned the demand to enter the city without compromising our position in China altogether, and opening the way to calamities even greater than those now before us." The deliberate burning of the Summer Palace at Pekin was another instance of how inexorable Lord Elgin could be when he had once determined that strong measures were necessary. Yet all this time his sympathy with the better side of the Chinese character, and his desire to get to understand it as thoroughly as was possible in so short a stay, continued undiminished. Lord Elgin entered on his Indian government with his characteristic thoroughness and energy. But unhappily his allotted time was short. The account of his last days, given by his brother-in-law, the Dean of Westminster, is full of interest. Struck down by heart-complaint, when engaged on an official tour in the north-west provinces, he had a week to contemplate the approaches of inevitable death. The grim visitor found him prepared with the panoply of a Christian. He uttered some natural regrets ; then made all his arrangements for departure, and sank to his rest resigned and happy.
The “Life of Sir Henry Lawrence” has been given to the world by Mr. Merivale, but of the two volumes, the first was composed by Sir Herbert Edwardes, whose death prevented him from completing the task heundertook as much as fourteen years ago. Why it was not completed sooner we can hardly understand. Sir Herbert made vast and careful collections for his work. It was truly to him a labour of love. He was an intimate personal friend of his hero, and belonged, like Sir Henry himself and many other distinguished officers of their time, to the straitest sect of the “Evangelicals.” Sir Herbert was, besides this, an accomplished writer, fond of the vivid and picturesque style, and, accordingly, his portion of the memoir, which goes down to Lawrence's appointment as Resident at Nepaul, is a most animated and gushing effusion, made up of religious sentiment, family minutiæ, dramatic “effects,” and indiscriminating eulogy.
The contrast between the first and the second volume is rather like that of a cold water douche taken by a patient after being boiled in blankets. Mr. Merivale writes temperately and thoughtfully. Though sympathizing with Sir Henry's religious earnestness, he cannot assimilate the particular doctrinal and sentimental aspect it assumed. Though admiring his lofty, disinterested, and chivalrous character, he does not think him always in the right as a politician, and, in the Punjaub business, is disposed to side with John Lawrence. Lord Dalhousie's conduct, at all events, so much complained of by the partisans of Sir Henry, Mr. Merivale defends. The case was this :
Henry Lawrence, then President of the Board at Lahore, held views in
regard to the native aristocracy, rent, free grants, resumptions, proprietorship, tenant-right, and so forth, very dissimilar to those of his brother. After a while, their differences of opinion became an impediment to business, and almost a discredit to the State. Lord Dalhousie agreed with the younger brother, and, taking advantage of a hint as to retirement thrown out by the President of the Board, made him the offer of the Residentship of Rajpootana. This was accepted by Henry Lawrence, not, of course, without mortification; the Board was dissolved ; a Chief Commissionership was created and bestowed upon John Lawrence; and the elder brother retired früm the province where years before he had gained his first diplomatic honours, and where he had so successfully laboured to reconcile a proud and warlike population to the burden as well as to the advantage of our unbending rule. However the personal friends and adherents of Henry Lawrence—and they were neither few nor unimportant-might regret the termination of the controversy, it could have ended in no other way. It would be too much to expect that any Viceroy, having decided opinions as to some special course to be pursued, should abstain from enforcing his own policy by the agents whose views were in consonance with his own. Meanwhile, the extremely creditable part of the affair is, that it produced neither alienation nor personal ill-feeling between the two brothers.
But Sir Henry could never get over the slight, as he considered it. And, indeed, a general tendency to think his claims neglected seems to have been a besetting weakness of this great man. So Mr. Merivale points out, though we doubt not Sir Herbert Edwardes would have failed to discern it; and thus an unconscious egotism, an inability really to forget himself in the contemplation of wide subjects, mingled in Sir Henry's character, oddly enough, with a rarely unselfish generosity in all matters of practical conduct. We quote from Mr. Merivale a passage which is interesting on account of its subtle analysis of official character and habits, and which lets us into the secret of much of Sir Henry's personal influence and popularity.
“Besides higher qualifications, he possessed, in an eminent degree, a quality which can hardly be called a merit, but which often stands its possessor in greater stead than more exalted merits,-readiness to take interest in the concerns of others. Many a man, with the best and kindest intentions towards his associates and subordinates, and without any degree of haughtiness on his own part, fails in winning affection, perhaps in obtaining personal success, because he cannot bring himself to feel or to act this kind of sympathy with them in their affairs and their progress. Such a man avoids close personal intercourse, except on business subjects, not from pride or unamiableness, but because he derives no pleasure from it, and is annoyed by the necessity for it. He is not what the Greeks called, 'anthropologous,' which Sir Henry was to a very great extent. Without being exactly of what are termed social habits, he loved companionship, and to have around him those in whom he took interest, and who repaid it. I have found among the records of this part of his life a curious indication of his habits in making acquaintance with his new set of subordinates. On some of their earliest reports, respectively, he has endorsed a kind of summary of their character as it struck him; e.g. political agent at --, amiable and not without ability, but priggish, and must have his own way,' and so forth. There are few ambitious and active young assistants who would not rather be anxioas that they were
noticed in this way by a popular chief, even though praise were mixed with disparagement, than that they were left in the cold shade of impartial silence.”
In conclusion, we would add that the record of the bright character and remarkable talents of Sir Henry's wife Honoria, and her graphic letters, form no inconsiderable portion of the charm of these volumes. Sir Henry was left most desolate in spirit by her death, which occurred four years before his own; but his devotion to duty was unimpaired up to the fatal day when a chance shell from the rebel batteries shattered his thigh at Lucknow; and never was epitaph more appropriate than that chosen by himself, “Here lies Henry, Lawrence, who tried to do his duty."
Life and Letters of Captain Marryat.” By Florence Marryat (Mrs. Ross Church).-As a biography it cannot be said that this book is well done. Captain Marryat's character was sufficiently original, and his literary achievements sufficiently popular, to have made a life-like sketch of him very acceptable. But Mrs. Ross Church has cumbered her volumes with a great deal of dull, documentary matter, and with many letters that are not worth insertion : and she does not connect or explain the motives of her father's actions and movements as she might have done. We learn that Frederick Marryat was born in Westminster in 1792. He went to sea when a mere boy, and left it when a man in his prime. He had been in above a hundred engagements on land and sea, and earned rank and honour by the zealous fulfilment of his professional duties.
The peace of 1815 threw him out of active employment for a time. In 1820 and 1821 he was cruising round the Island of St. Helena, acting as a sort of naval sentinel on Bonaparte, on whose death he sailed with despatches announcing the event to England. A pamphlet urging the abolition of impressment, published in 1822, created a strong aversion to him in the mind of the Duke of Clarence, and was remembered by that royal personage when he became William IV., as the following anecdote testifies:--His Minister having suggested Captain Marryat to him as a deserving subject for some mark of favour, the King said, "Give him what you please; you best know his services.” The Minister was about to retiro, when the magnanimous monarch called him back,—“Marryat, Marryat! By-the-bye, is not that the man who wrote a book against the impressment of seamen ?” The same, your Majesty." " Then he shan't wear the Order (the Legion of Honour just given him by Louis Philippe), and he shall have nothing."
Captain Marryat served in the Burmese expedition, 1823—1825, and had the credit of capturing the famous stockades in the Rangoon River, being rewarded for his gallantry (notwithstanding William IV.'s prepossessions) by a Companionship of the Bath. His last cruise was in 1828–1830, when he commanded the “ Ariadne" in the Atlantic. On his return to England he held the post of Equerry to the Duke of Sussex. But this he soon gave up, and turned his mind to literary pursuits. His first naval novel, “ Frank Mildmay,” had been published before he resigned the command of the "Ariadne." Colburn, the publisher, gave him four hundred guineas for it. "Newton Forster" appeared in 1832. Next came “Peter Simple," of all his productions the most general favourite, though “Japhet in Search of a Father” may be considered superior to it for truth and vividness of representation within a narrower range of sympathies. We need not go through the list of his novels. “Jacob Faithful" and "Midshipman Easy” will be among the best remembered. In his later years he wrote romances of adventure adapted specially to the tastes and understanding of children ; and it may be doubted whether any effort of his pen, even including “ Peter Simple,” has attained so true and lasting a popularity as "Masterman Ready." Just before he left active service, Marryat bought an estate in Norfolk, called Langham, of about 1000 acres, the outlay connected with which, in inventions and improvements, kept him a poor man to the end of his days. He did not go to reside there till 1843, within five years of his death, which occurred in August, 1848, when he was not more than fifty-six years old; the end being hastened by the news of his eldest son having been lost in the “Avenger.”
One of the most conspicuous biographies for the year has been the “Life and Labours of Mr. Brassey,” by Sir Arthur Helps. At first sight the combination in the title-page struck us as odd. We hardly expected that the great Railway Contractor of the age would have found for his delineator a philosophical moralist so refined, so fastidious, of such purely literary sympathies as the mouthpiece of Milverton and Sir John Ellesmere; or that the fact of his hero having begun life with nothing, and left a fortune of two millions and a half, would have had any special imaginative charm for the Utopian theorist of Realmah. But Sir Arthur's choice of his subject seems really to have been a choice of love. When he first made acquaintance with Mr. Brassey, he was fascinated. Describing the interview, he says, “There entered an elderly gentleman of very dignified appearance, of singularly graceful manners, suggesting at once the idea of what is called a gentleman of the old school.” And he adds that the one man of whom Mr. Brassey most reminded him was the late Lord Herbert of Lea.
He began life in a humble, but not a destitute, condition. His family was, indeed, an old one in Cheshire, and had descended to the level of the yeomanry from a higher social rank. His father possessed above three hundred acres of landed property.
At the age of sixteen he was articled to a land-surveyor and agent. working qualifications and personal attractiveness won the good will of his master, who took him into partnership, and sent him to conduct a branch of his business at Birkenhead, then scarcely showing any signs of its coming growth and prosperity. For eight years he continued in this occupation, and then made an acquaintance which changed the whole course of his life. He went to inspect a stone quarry in company with George Stephenson, who was so favourably impressed with the young man's peculiar energy and powers of combination that he advised him to turn contractor. The contractor, such as he was then known, was an employer of labour on a far different scale from that with which we are now familiar. Stephenson, who must have foreseen better than most people the immense mechanical and industrial obstacles which would hinder the actual construction of railways, no doubt rejoiced to set a man like young Brassey to overcome them. Brassey's first tender was not accepted, but when he tried again he was successful. Ten miles of the Stafford and Wolverhampton line were entrusted to him, and the manner in which he executed the work thoroughly satisfied every one who had to do with him. Locke, Stephenson's successor in his engineering connexion, became his fast friend, and under his auspices Brassey quickly came to the front in the ranks of contractors. The mere list of his subsequent works makes one marvel how any single brain could have contrived to carry out such a multi