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about. The first principle of diplomacy is to keep on good terms with foreign Powers one's self; the second, to foster dissensions between those who, if united, would be dangerous to you. It is this latter principle which Prince Couza works to such great advantage. We seem carefully to reverse this order; and the result of our recent diplomacy has been to quarrel with every European Power and to unite them against us. Thus we are quite as much detested as a nation in the Principalities as in Germany or Denmark; and being about to lure the Turks to their destruction, we shall end by being execrated by the only people which still in its simplicity clings to our alliance, and believes in its efficacy. At the same time, while the Roumains, like the Greeks, hate and abuse us, I have little doubt that, like them, if they were called on to elect a prince by popular vote, they would unite in favour of an English one. However much we are despised as a friend or disliked as an enemy, we are immensely respected by virtue of our internal institutions, and of our individual independence of character. While the English Government is universally unpopular, the Englishman abroad is usually perferred to any other foreigner, and to a great extent redeems or extenuates the faults of his administration in the eyes of those with whom he is staying. The wonder to every foreigner is, that the national policy should be the result of the national character. As individuals, Englishmen have the credit of being the most scrupulously truthful and honourable of men; as a nation we are “perfide;” and so far from the latest efforts of our diplomacy having tended to remove this impression, we have achieved a higher reputation for perfidy during the last two or three years than we ever enjoyed before. Individually, the Englishman is admitted to be brave; politically, the name of England is a byword for cowardice. Individually he is regarded as absurdly open-handed—his generosity is pro
verbial; but the national policy is held up as the type of all that is sordid, cold-blooded, and selfish. Everything, in fact, that the Englishman is, the English Government is not; and it requires no little patience and temper in the present day to travel, and venture upon political discussions with foreigners. Nor does the secret conviction that they are right tend to increase one's serenity. In this little out-of-the-way Moldavian town, the vices of England were crammed down our throats. We were accused of egotism, of being mercenary, of impeding the development of these provinces for our own selfish ends, of intrigues so black that even a Moldavian imagination shuddered to contemplate them, and of designs so elaborate and far-seeing that the only way it was possible to convince people that they did not exist, was by explaining the phenomenon of extremes meeting. Thus a sublime degree of folly and simplicity may at last be mistaken for a wisdom and a subtlety not appreciable by the masses. English travellers are so rare in Moldavia that even in Jassy one is looked upon rather as a curiosity ; and the ignorance of society with reference to England is as great as that usually displayed by British members of Parliament when they are discussing our relations with China. Perhaps when one considers the superior opportunities which such a man as Mr Cobden enjoys of obtaining information, there is less excuse for him than for a Jassy politician. In general, the few ideas upon any subject which the Moldavian men possess they derive from the women. Nothing was more striking than the invariable rule which insured your hearing from the men in the morning what had been propounded to you by the old women the night before. As is usually the case in communities in a low state of European civilisation, the female portion of society is immeasurably superior to the male; indeed, in would be difficult to find anything in Europe
inferior to a Moldavian male, ex- soldiers after them, take universaleept, perhaps, a Wallacbian. With suffrage votes after them, cook after the men, therefore, it was rarely them, farnish after them, dance, possible to discuss politics, or any flirt, gamble after them, and another subject. They scarcely ever siously watch for the impression open a book; they only engage in which this admirable imitation of politics because they offer such everything French makes upon the splendid opportunities for looting stranger. Far more particular about the public money; they only tra- the polish of their boots than the vel to pick up the vices of civi- purity of their honour, a Roumain lisation; they only marry because gentleman would prefer you to comthe facilities for divorce are SO pliment him on his French accent great that marriage ceases to be rather than on his integrity. In& tie. That there are rare excep- deed, I am bound to say that nothing tions to the general role is only to that I have said of them here is half be expected, but with every desire so severe as what I have heard them to do jastice to a country where, at say, of one another. It was quite all events, the rites of hospitality disheartening at last, when, on are thoroughly understood, it is im- making some new acquaintance, possible to be blind to its faults. and hearing him give vent to ferIf the traveller never ventured upon vent patriotic sentiments, and lofty & general and impartial criticisin of aspirations for himself and his coonthe people of a country because he try, I was always told, when I dehappenel to be well received in it, scribed to one of his friends my there would be little use in his tra- pleasure at having at last found an velling; por are the Moldavians or honest man, "What! that man Wallachians likely to cure their bonest ? of all the unprincipled faults unless they hear what those scoundrels in the Principalities he who would willingly extenuate them, is chief." In the end one is obwere it possible, find reprehensible. liged, from sheer despair, to abanOne of the peculiarities of the race don one sex for the other. Were is a great sensitiveness to criticism it not for the men, the women would by a stranger; and it made one un- be nicer than they are; but as it comfortable to feel that any chance is, they do what they can to reremark was likely to be twisted deem their country. They bave into an uncomplimentary sense, nobler aspirations, higher intelliwhether one meant it or not. It is gences, and more force of character. true, this only applies to superficials. They are so glad to see a stranger, It is so generally admitted among that, if he is the least presentable, themselves that nobody can be he is sure of an entrée into society; trasted, that it is the habit never and as, more especially since the to play cards except with the stakes seat of government has been moved on the table. Nor do they care for to Bucharest, the number of firstbeing charged with moral defects. class boyard families now resident What hurts their pride is an unfav. in Jassy is considerably diminished, ourable contrast between a Molda- he will soon know every one. The vian and a French made dish, or a town itself is not a particularly eymeal expression of countenance agreeable place of residence, apart on entering a salon, as though you from its society. It is neither one were comparing the furniture with thing nor the other. It has neither that of a handsome Paris apparte- the ropose and languor of the East, ment. They have the most su- nor the stir and vivacity of the preme admiration for all the worst West. The streets are irregular ani points in the French character; they ill-paved; the shops are poor, and go to Paris expressly to pick them there is no great thoroaghfare where up, and are very indignant if you it is amusing to fláner. Indeed, do not praise them for having them. in the absence of a trottoir, nobody They dress after the French, play dreams of walking. The hack carVOL. XOVI.
riages are the best in Europe—light, open, one-horse phaetons, as daintily got up as though they were private property; the ladies and gentlemen are flying about in them jolting over the rough pavement at a rapid pace all day and night. The drivers of these are for the most part Russians, belonging to that peculiar sect in the Greek Church which enjoins mutilation. As there is a law in Russia prohibiting the practice, they flock across the frontier, and for some reason or other almost invariably become cab-drivers. There is something particularly loathsome and unhealthy-looking in their appearance. The city contains between fifty and sixty thousand inhabitants, composed of Jews, gypsies, Armenians, Germans, Sclaves, Roumains, Poles, and other foreigners. The best proof of the mongrel nature of the population is to be found on the signboards, where German, Italian, Moldavian, French, and sometimes Russian or Turkish, appear indiscriminately. The fact of being only ten miles from Russia on the one hand, and of having been for many years in the occupation of the Turks on the other, gives the city a half-Russian, halfTurkish aspect, which makes it unlike any other—Turkish suburbs of hovels, and Russian silent streets and grand houses, Turkish baths and Russian churches, with the corruption and intrigue of both countries concentrated. There are some public gardens in the outskirts of the town, where the band plays two or three times a-week, and where one is quite sure to see congregated all the beauty, and fashion of the Moldavian capital; and there is a theatre, which was closed at the o of my visit, but we made up
or it by dancing every night in
stead. The houses are large palatial residences, usually standing in courtards, and elaborately furnished. }. tact in so far as servants, equiages, and the externals of domestic #. are concerned, everything is scrupulously French. Everybody talks French perfectly, and a large
proportion of society English, so that nothing can be pleasanter than to be drawn for a brief period into its Vortex. There are picnics to be undertaken to charming country-houses —among others, to one upon the banks of the . Pruth—to which we all go in a cortege of light carriages and four, and dash across the steppe through clouds of dust; but our fair companions in their light gauzy dresses and gay parasols are as indifferent to it as our wild gypsy postboys. Here we find a handsome chateau, magnificently furnished, and commanding an extensive view of the plains of Bessarabia; the Pruth winds at the base of the steep hill, clothed to the water's edge with wood, through which are cut romantic paths, doubly delightful in this country, where wood is scarce. From here we can see with a glass the soldiers of the Russian garrison; and if General Kotzebue does intend to cross the Pruth, it will be at this point that the operation is likely to be effected. Even then there was a very general impression that an invasion of the province by Russia was imminent, and rumours were constantly flying about of reinforcements of troops arriving in Bessarabia. The Polish insurrection and the Circassian war, however, gave full emo to the armies of the Czar. ow everything is changed—the subjugation and deportation of the warlike race which is migrating under such distressing circumstances to Turkey, will release from Caucasian service an army of 120,000 men, who will be available for any stroke of policy which may be undertaken by Russia in this direction; while the Polish insurrection is so utterly extinguished for the time at least, that the state of that country need not embarrass any aggressive movement. That before the expiration of this year another army of occupation will be quartered, in Moldavia, is a very fair subject for prophecy; but whether that army will be Russian or Austrian is not so easy to determine. The Moldavi.
ans are rich in their experiences be forgotten. The race-course is of armies of occupation, and it is within a mile of the town, situated amusing to hear them indulging in a valley, altogether the most picin invidious comparisons between turesque spot in the neighbourhood. them. I found one universal opin- A motley crowd gathers here to ion. First, of course, all armies of see Russian horses compete with occupation are hateful and detest- English and every variety of crossable, tyrannise over society, rob breeds. In this respect the horses the poor, and otherwise misconduct and the people who are collected to themselves. If an army of angels look at them are pretty much on a could occupy the country, they would par. Some of the Moldavian ladies be disliked and complained of'; but went on horseback; and as the the order in which the three na- weather was bright, the scene was tions who have been severally repre- gay in spite of the dust. As usual, sented in this military form in the there were two or three English Principalities are disliked, is as fol- jockeys, and Moldavian and Russian lows: First, the Austrians-officers jockeys in remarkable half-Cossackand men both cordially hated, but looking costumes, who flogged their officers especially so. Second, the horses without intermission from Turks-i referred to the Austrians, the starting to the winning post, but very naturally disliked upon re- and seemed to think the only use ligious and social grounds. And, of the reins was to shake them near thirdly, the Russians — the least the horse's ears. The chief defect abused of the three, thanks especi- in the scenery round Jassy is the ally to a certain General Kotzebue, absence of wood and water, otherwho governed Moldavia with judg- wise the country is prettily broken; ment and honesty. So that the and where money has been spent crossing of the Pruth by the Russi- upon plauting and otherwise beauans would be preferred to the cross- tifying it, there are some charming ing of the Dniester by the Austri- spots. The most celebrated of these ans. It is rumoured that Austria is a country-house called Sokola, and Russia have come to an arrange- the property of one of the late ment with reference to these Princi- hospodars; but the glory of Jassy palities, and that Austria is to an- has departed since the seat of Dex Moldavia, and Russia Walla- government has been moved to chia; but it is impossible to say in Bucharest - in other words, since an atmosphere of intrigue which the the union of the two provinces. inner wheel of all is, or who is be- In order to hear a Moldavian really traying whom. It used to be sup- eloquent, this is the subject to posed that France and Russia tho- get him on; it is the only piece of roughly understood each other in politics in which he is thoroughly their policy here; but Prince Cou- interested, because it touches his za's coup d'état has given consider- pocket. It also gives him an opable dissatisfaction to the latter portunity for indulging in vituperaPower. However, the slopes of tion, which is his strong point. It Stinka are not the place to talk is only by abusing the Wallachians, politics. The men could not if they collectively and individually, that wished, and the women are not in- he can in any way console himself clined to be bored with so dry a for the injury he feels they have subiect. So we play games and done him. In this respect the dance until far on into the night, Moldavian is very like the Neapoliand then, with the brightest of full tan; and it is not unnatural, conmoons tighting up our way, gallop sidering the origin of both, that back again across the steppe to there should be a strong family
resemblance. To hear him abusing Among other social pastimes of Wallachia, is like listening to a the gay capital, the races are not to Neapolitan abusing Piedmont. All
the misfortunes of the country are Morny was actually offered this traced to the unhappy union which very throne, but even he was not has given the sister province the to be tempted from the Bourse opportunity of benefiting at the and the Bois de Boulogne. In fact, expense of Moldavia. The advanced he replied that he would rather Moldavians who, from “ a united- be a "concierge dans le Rue de nationality” point of view, were in Bac qu’un roi en
Moldavie." favour of the union before they To any young adventurer of an tried it, are now either afraid to ambitious and filibustering turn adhere to their old views, or have of mind, and possessing a certain changed their minds. A few still talent for intrigue, Moldavia opens say the experiment has not been a most attractive' field. The first fairly tried, and lay all the blame step would be an influential matrion Prince Couza, who, by the way, monial alliance; as the women are being a Moldavian himself, is hated, generally heiresses, wealth might for that reason among others, in be combined with beauty; then a Wallachia. It is only due to the short social career of popularity; Wallachians to state that they re- then the ascendency of the strong turn the animosity of the northern will and contriving brain over the province with interest. When wo- fops and imbeciles around him; men engage in the discussion and then a conspiracy; then a popular come to be personal, the Wallach- rising, and a divorce of Wallachia, ians call the Moldavians the de- followed, if it suited him, by the scendants of Jews, and the Molda- divorce of his own partner, who, vians retort upon the others by being entitled by the laws of her calling them a nation of gypsies. Church to three successive husbands It is indeed the fact that some of during her lifetime, would probably the noblest families in Wallachia be delighted at the prospect of a are descended from this race, of change. The only difficult part of which they
more ashamed the programme would be to get the than our own Carews;, while the Moldavians to take heart of grace, Jewish element, not visible in Wal- and rebel. They are dying to do lachia, is most prominently devel- it now, but Couza's wretched little oped ' in Moldavia. It may safely army, though it was held in check be predicted that when Couza dies, by 250 Poles, is enough to overawe but possibly before, there will be a them. Meantime it is a notable separation of the provinces. The instance of union not making Moldavians are perfectly determin- strength; and the probable result ed that the union shall not con- of all these
dissensions among tinue; their real ardent aspiration themselves will be the annexation is for a foreign prince to rule over of both provinces to one or other them. They have tried a long or both of the two great neighbourseries of their own boyards, and ing Powers, who are only waiting have found one more incompetent to swallow them up. It will be than the other. According to their better for the countries themselves own admission, they must look that this should be their fate. Howabroad for the virtues and the ever bad may be the government of talents which none of their coun- Russia or Austria, however incontrymen possess, but which they venient such an acquisition of terfondly bope may be found among ritory may be in the "European the scions of some royal house; equilibrium" point of view, there nor will they believe that the throne can be no doubt that it is the only of Moldavia, such as it is, would be chance which exists of developing a position which an English coun- the material resources of these fertry gentleman, with a tolerable tile countries, and imparting to rent-roll
, would decline, to say their institutions some kind of stanothing of a Prince of the Blood. bility. At present no speculator le years ago
the Duc de dares venture on contracting with