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life to its abstract moral traditions, then | well drilled; but the effect was marred by corruption will be a shame, China will be the national lack of discipline, which perpurified, and will be ready for the great mitted the crowd to mix with the soldiers. future it has in the East. The power that At the tail end of one regiment walked a has changed England from the unshamed quaint and ragged boy, his little head tied brutality of Jeffreys and the unstinted up in a picturesquely dirty bandage, and a bribery of Walpole, in a century or two will tin can hanging on his arm, as he, all unchange China too, and honesty and moral conscious, solemnly marched past the courage, having their place in the heart of Junta del Gobierno. the ruler, will spread as in the dream of her ancient sages from the individual to the household, and from the household to every corner of a prosperous and peaceful land.
From Blackwood's Magazine.
THE diez y ocho holidays in Santiago this season have been gayer than usual. It is at the national commemoration of the independence of Chile that for one week in the year this dreary capital awakes to life and festivity.
Only those who have been in Chile during the last eight months, and experienced the terrorism and repression that have held the entire population during the dictatorship of Balmaceda, can understand the sudden reaction, and the general rejoicing and relief, that were felt when the civil war ended, and his power was broken. The events of the last few weeks have been strikingly dramatic, with an undercurrent of pathos.
On the 19th September the great review took place on the Santiago race-course. A kind of dais had been arranged in the new grand stand, where the Junta del Gobierno sat in state and surveyed the troops. In the centre of the cancha (racecourse) were drawn up lines of cavalry, artillery, and infantry; and one by one the regiments marched out of the enclosure, and, following the track, passed in front of the grand stand, while numerous and not altogether unanimous bands clashed out the stirring national anthem of Chile. Flags and white or colored uniforms made a pleasing contrast to the spring green of the grass; and a characteristic feature was the ceremony of blessing a large crimson banner, presented to the troops by the ladies of Santiago. The chaplain of the forces, a priest in suitably short robes, was on horseback among the staff of General Canto. The review was very satisfactory, and the soldiers workmanlike and
Behind the race-course and its brilliant colors came a dark, wintry belt of trees, lightened by the delicate, pale spring green of a few that were just beginning to bud; and above everything, against a very faint blue sky, towered the beautiful Cordillera, the glory of Chile. A dazzling unbroken whiteness here and there softened into misty patches, changed almost abruptly into blackness lower down, except where the snow still lay in the hollows, and straggled like tiny streams into the hazy darkness of the slopes.
It was in the midst of this scene, while the vivas still sounded, that a whisper began to go round, and excitement visibly gained. The whisper was that Balmaceda had shot himself. To most it was a revelation that he had remained in Santiago. He was believed to be far away, and report said he had already crossed the Cordillera, while one account stated that his muledriver had recognized and shot him on the way. Many now refused to credit the news of his suicide, and looked upon it as a mere invention to veil his escape; and those who did believe it could only say that Balmaceda had but anticipated justice. The news was true.
When Balmaceda took up the reins of government, Chile was in a most prosperous condition, the national treasury full, commerce and industry flourishing. His path seemed easy, for the machinery of government ran smoothly, and required no great talent or energy to guide it. But his inordinate vanity and his utter want of honor were his ruin. One by one, he broke faith with every one; and the fact that in twenty-two months he had nine ministers of foreign affairs speaks volumes for itself. At one time, when Belisario Prato assumed office, and public confidence was thereby restored, Balmaceda had, as it were, a fresh start, and might have avoided further friction; but cooperation soon became impossible, and the ministry was dissolved. By a little concession and tact, he might have had the aid of the ablest minds in Chile; but he deliberately surrounded himself with ministers of a low class who were unworthy of trust, or else with weak and vain
men who were mere tools in his clever hands.
The climax came when the Camera, having no faith in the ministry, refused supplies, and the annual votes for the continuance of the army and navy; and Balmaceda practically made himself dictator, and determined to do without Congress.
When the fleet went out in opposition on the 7th January, no one anticipated the prolonged struggle that followed. It was expected that the army would follow the example of the navy, and that Balmaceda would find himself powerless. Since the time of the war between Chile and Peru, there had been a certain amount of rivalry between the two services; but, whether from motives of jealousy, or from motives of extreme caution, or from real loyalty to Balmaceda, it is certain that the army did not back up the navy, and a civil war became inevitable. Foreigners were much struck by the want of spirit shown by civilians who sympathized with the cause, but preferred words and safety to action and danger; and it is all the more credit to those who did risk all and join the Constitutional force, that they, unaided, succeeded so well in the cause they had at heart. There were, it is true, many plots to make military risings in favor of the Constitutional army; but these always failed at the last moment, through indecision or treachery, and many lives were uselessly sacrificed. Still, there were cases where great courage and pluck were shown, as, for instance, when the Maipo cleverly slipped out of Valparaiso harbor, and carried many enthusiastic volunteers in safety to the north.
Meanwhile Chile, under Balmaceda, lay beneath a weight of terror. The country was overrun with spies, private correspondence was not respected, freedom of speech was forbidden, the press was almost suppressed, and no one suspected of being unfavorable to the government was in safety. Imprisonments, floggings, tortures, and inspections of houses at all hours of the day or night, were of frequent occurrence; and a feeling of general insecurity and uneasiness took possession of every one. In Santiago, three people were not allowed to speak together in the streets; no carriage might be driven later than six o'clock; and no one might be out after eleven o'clock at night. The sick might suffer without doctors, the dying might pass away without absolution. To wear red, the revolutionary color, was to ensure imprisonment. And the comic side of the question was by no means
wanting. There were amusing stories of mistaken arrests by over-zealous police, who swept in all comers from the highest diplomats to the most innocent of babies in red-lined perambulators; and foreigners who, trusting to their nationality, courted danger by flaunting red ties in the eyes of the authorities, found themselves in dark and disagreeable cells, and were the cause of much unnecessary trouble to the ministers of their respective countries. Among the number of these willing law-breakers, but unwilling victims, was one man who, having purposely worn a red camellia, and inconsequently resented the four hours' imprisonment that followed, rushed, as soon as he was released, to pour his grievances into the ears of his minister, and appeal for satisfaction.
"I congratulate you," was the unexpected reply.
"Upon having got out so soon."
When the Constitutional forces landed Quinteros, they were hailed with joy and enthusiasm; while Balmaceda with a stronger army, but with bad generals, lost footing day by day.
It was just after the disembarkation of the troops that the massacre of Lo Cañas took place the darkest blot that has stained Balmaceda's name - the desperate deed of a desperate man. A company of jovenes, or youths of good position, ranging from about fifteen to twenty years of age, formed themselves into a montonera a body of guerillas - with the object of assisting the Constitutional army, by cutting the bridges, railway and telegraph lines between Santiago and the south, so as to prevent the arrival of reinforcements from Concepcion and Talcahuano. The father of one of these boys himself a follower of Balmaceda heard of this opposition plan, and, anxious to save his son, and also put a stop to the venture, went at once to the Moneda and asked for a few soldiers to go to Lo Cañas and bring back the lad. But the government, finding its position desperate, and in the hopes of firmly stamping out all such risings, sent a squadron of cavalry to the hacienda. The unfortunate youths were surprised early in the morning, when fast asleep in a small summer residence that stands at the foot of the Cordillera, a little higher up than the hacienda house, on the estate of Señor Carlos Walker Martineez. Nine of them were either shot or cut down with the sword, ten more surrendered and were taken prisoners, and others escaped.
When the ten prisoners were being marched along the road to Santiago, they were met by an order from Balmaceda to the effect that the officer in charge was to conduct them back to Lo Cañas and shoot them. This was done, and their bodies were then horribly mutilated and burnt. The official inquiry, made by the present government, has not yet been published, but all the newspapers give a terrible account of the tortures to which the young administrator of the estate was subjected, in order to make him reveal the whereabouts of Carlos Walker Martineez. He was tied to a tree, cut with swords, and then burned with lighted paraffin; but he heroically refused to betray his patron, and died after about an hour of frightful agony. If the revolution has shown up the cowards who could only talk and pose as victims, it has also shown the heroes who could silently suffer and die.
The failure of this plan to cut the railway between Santiago and Talcahuano was a very great blow to the Constitutional cause. The Junta del Gobierno had expected to meet in the field the garrisons of Valparaiso and of Santiago, but not the troops from the south. For some time they deliberated upon the advisability of returning to their ships, but the want of fresh water on board prevented this undesirable alternative; and, in spite of the overwhelming majority, they determined to meet the forces of Balmaceda and risk everything.
The dictator's troops were decisively defeated, first at Con Con and afterwards at Placilla; and it is an interesting fact that, for four days during the interval between the two battles, the government force completely lost touch of the Constitutional army, and had no idea of its whereabouts, all their outposts either deserting or being taken prisoner by the enemy. Communication was completely cut off between Valparaiso and Santiago, and between both of these towns and the seat of war. The government papers, which were the only ones permitted, continued all this time to give false information concerning the state of affairs, claiming continuous success for Balmaceda. It was only by vague reports that the truth was suspected, even at Valparaiso, which was within eight miles of both
On Friday the 28th August, Balmaceda gave a dinner-party at the Moneda in honor of his wife's saint's day. It was the fatal day of the great Placilla victory; but his indomitable will kept up the farce
until the very end. At about ten o'clock that night the acting minister of foreign affairs, Zañartu, went to the Argentine Legation and asked Señor Uriburu to give the president asylum, with the understanding that it was only for a few days, until some arrangement could be made with the Junta del Gobierno by General Baquedano, in order to enable Balmaceda to leave the country in safety. Shortly after one o'clock, the dictator, having destroyed most of his private papers, quietly left the Moneda, and took refuge with the minister of the Argentine Republic, handing over Santiago to General Baquedano to avoid further bloodshed.
The next day dawned on a complete change. The city was full of sound - the long-silent church bells rang, vivas echoed ceaselessly. Every window was draped with flags, and ladies might be seen cutting off pieces of red ribbon and throwing them down to the entreating crowd below. No one knew where all the red came from; but the very poorest had secured some scrap of the revolutionary color, that had meant imprisonment the day before. The Constitutional newspapers were printed once more, and the Ferro Carril bore the significant date of "From January 8 to August 30," on the morning that it appeared for the first time since the civil war began. Legations that for months had given shelter to opositores, now opened their doors to let them go out in safety, and to admit the hunted followers of Balmaceda.
And the sound of the vivas and the tumult of a delighted city must have reached the ears of the one man who, a few hours before, had held the nation in thrall. In a darkened room for they dared not admit daylight — with one candle to light him, creeping stealthily in list slippers lest his footsteps should be heard, with nothing to brood over but the bitter remembrance of the past and the bitterer dread of the future, Balmaceda passed the time that must have dragged so heavily. If the mob that filled the streets had even suspected his hiding. place, nothing could have saved him.
One of the curious features of Balmaceda's fall was, that the night he left the Moneda the entire police force of Santiago, consisting of more than a thousand men, disbanded itself, and men, arms, and horses completely disappeared, leaving the city to the mercy of the mob. They evidently feared the vengeance of the common people, with whom they were deservedly unpopular.
There is little doubt that the sack of the houses owned by Balmaceda's followers, which then began in Santiago, was a politically organized affair. The business was managed in a naively systematic manner; and the leader of each crowd, mounted on a Chile nag, dressed in a poncho and a soft hat, and armed with a town-crier's bell, was not the simple countryman that he wished to appear. In some cases the bajos (lower story) of a house would be looted, but not the altos (upper story), because one belonged to a Balmacedista and the other to an opositor, - a delicate discernment that could hardly be expected of, say, a French communist mob. And in these cases the evident aim was to destroy, not to steal. The houses were left in such a condition that they looked like unfinished buildings, without anything entire except the walls and roof. This much is to be said, that had Balmaceda won, many more people, foreigners included, would have suffered, for there was a tremendous majority against him. As it was, only the houses of his few immediate followers were sacked, besides a great many small shops and pawnbrokers. It was a sight that cannot easily be forgotten, to see the crowd rush through the streets, when, later in the day, robbery became more inviting than destruction.
The excited populace hastened from the sacking of some building or private house, carrying along all sorts of broken pieces of furniture, bedsteads, and chandeliers. A man toiled past under the weight of a heavy polished wood hat-stand, so enormous that he was obliged, from time to time, to stop and rest. "Mira!" approvingly shouted the ladies in a balcony opposite; "tell us, whose house is it from?" A group ran past, dragging the broken pieces of a statue of Balmaceda, and every now and then they stopped to kick and insult it. Dirty peons had possessed themselves of books and pictures; dishevelled women wheeled plush chairs and sofas along the pavement; vans of stolen goods were driven by, and at each moment the vivas burst forth.
While all this was going on outside, Balmaceda still remained safely hidden in the Argentine Legation. As time passed by, it became evident that his possibilities of escape were lessening, for General Baquedano declared that he found public opinion too strong for him, and that he was powerless to help the fallen dictator, thus shifting the entire responsibility and great danger from his own shoulders to those of Señor Uriburu, who, in spite
of his strong sympathies with the Constitutional party, did not, for one instant, shrink from the peril of harboring such a guest.
The one room in which Balmaceda lived was in a disused part of the house, led to by a private staircase, with a door at the foot, which was always kept locked. His food was prepared by a trustworthy womanservant, the only person there, besides his hosts, who knew of his presence. To avoid suspicion, she went out and bought his food every day, and cooked it on a little spirit-lamp up-stairs.
Balmaceda wrote incessantly, occupying himself in making an exposition of his conduct and plan of government; but this he afterwards destroyed.
One day when the door at the foot of the staircase had been accidentally left open, the children of the house ran up, and, playing about, began noisily to thump on the locked door of his room. They little knew that behind it, revolver in hand, stood a desperate man, who, hearing the sounds, and living in constant terror of his life, thought that his hiding-place had been discovered by the people, and waited for death, determined to sell his life dearly. It was a dramatic contrast, the unconscious children at play on one side of the door; the fallen and desperate man, hidden in the darkness, on the other.
The night before Balmaceda's death it had been arranged that he should next day deliver himself up to justice, on the condition that he should be fairly tried. An attempt had been made to secure the promise that, if sentenced to death, the penalty should be commuted; but this point was feared to be impossible of attainment. He was to be accompanied by the Argentine minister, and was to be driven quietly to the Penitenciario, which should be securely guarded from the mob. Balmaceda himself chose this building as the strongest and most easily defended of all the prisons, knowing that if the people could get him, his fate would be certain and awful.
But early on the morning of the 19th the sound of a shot was heard in his room, and on hurrying there, Señor Uriburu found him lying on his bed, covered to the chest with a sheet, the revolver still in the nerveless fingers, and his head terribly shattered by the bullet, which had passed straight through the brain. He had killed himself in a most determined manner, for the left hand was also black. ened with the powder, proving that while he pulled the trigger with one hand, he
held the barrel with the other, lest it should slip and fail to destroy him. Death had been instantaneous. It was evident that during the terrible night which preceded his suicide he had thought out his position, and had felt it to be a hopeless one, realizing also, as he said in a letter which he left for Señor Uriburu, that his presence was a danger to all in the house, and that his death might perhaps ensure easier terms for the rest of his followers. It proves his great force of will that he waited until the 18th of September had passed, and destroyed himself directly his full term of presidency had expired.
Carlos Walker Martineez was the man who removed the revolver from Balmaceda's nerveless hand; and very soon other old friends, whom the civil war had completely severed, gathered round his dead body.
When the Junta del Gobierno had been informed of his death, it was resolved not to publish the event until he should have been decently buried, to prevent outrage from the mob.
reputation which is decidedly the reverse. Every cockney will tell you that Essex is flat and ugly, without hills or any other feature of interest, excepting, perhaps, the scanty remnant of Epping Forest, which is a favorite resort of East End holidaymakers. Owing to this popular superstition, none of our home counties has been so little explored. Until quite lately, for example, that particular corner of Essex which I have in my mind, a place certainly neither flat nor ugly, has remained almost unknown, and been absolutely unvisited by travellers in search of the picturesque. Yet at the present moment we are assured by competent authorities that there is no scenery within thirty miles of London which can compare with it for beauty and variety. Five miles east of Chelmsford, half-way between that town and the ancient borough of Maldon, famous in Saxon annals, is a range of hills rising to a height of at least six hundred feet above the sea. On the south-east crest of this ridge stands the church and village of Danbury, the centre of this rural district. It would be hard to find a lovelier situation. The old roofs creep up the hillside and cluster round the still older church with the lofty spire which has been for centuries a beacon to the weary wanderer by land and to the storm-tossed wanderer at sea. Tall lime-trees grow up to the church doors; majestic wych-elms bend their graceful boughs over the grassy mounds where once the standard of the Black Raven flew. From these heights you can look down on the ocean, across which the Norsemen sailed, and taste the salt of the sea breezes. Turn where you will, a noble prospect meets the eye. Eastward the broad estuary of the Blackwater lies before you, with white sails dotted over its blue surface, and churches and hamlets rising from its high banks. Southward, you look across the valley of the Crouch River and the Laindon Hills to the silver streak of the Thames and the far shores of Kent. All around you stretch beautiful commons with their wealth of color and far-reaching views. There is The mills of God grind slowly, but they grind broken ridges and gnarled hawthorn-trees, the Rodney in Little Baddow, with the fine
With the utmost secrecy they managed to huddle his body into a coach and drive it that night to the cemetery, where an iron coffin was in waiting. And so in the darkness, hurriedly, and as if hiding some terrible crime, they buried the man who, less than a month before, had been the first in the land.
It is a strange coincidence that Balmaceda committed suicide exactly one month after the massacre of Lo Cañas, on the same day and at the same hour; and he was secretly buried in the vault of a kindly friend who had shown the same charity to the body of one of the poor boys killed in that massacre. They both lie together now, judge and victim.
If Balmaceda sinned much, he also suffered much; but death, which expiates so many crimes, cannot save him from condemnation. For eight dreary months his hand had been heavy on Chile; and those who most blame cannot but feel some shade of pity and awe, realizing as they must that
From The National Review.
THE County of Essex has never been famous for beauty of scenery. In the eyes of most people it has, we fear, enjoyed a
which make so picturesque a foreground to the changing lights and shadows of the plains beyond. There is the great com-1 mon of Woodham Walter, where for many hundreds of years the grand falconer trained his hawks for royal use, and where wild lilies-of-the-valley still bloom in the early summer time. In Danbury itself there is Horn Row, where goats crop the