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Lake Country he discovered that the foundation. Browning's poems are diffiRydal and Grasmere children are care- cult, and require a great deal of thought. fully instructed in Wordsworth's life

This great poet in all his poems and poetry, each child growing up with

teaches us to persevere and never to give some knowledge and love of the poet.

up trying. ... All great poets and writ

ers are sent by God to deliver a message Why-he exclaimed to himself-not

to us, which they do in the pleasant form Walworth boys and girls on of either poetry or prose. No poet or Browning? The idea dwelt with him, author is great unless he in his writings and on his return to Walworth Mr. teaches the reader nobler ways of living. Stead went round the board schools and Browning, in his poems, teaches us to broached his idea to the teachers. look after our souls, and not to let them “You are bound by the Code,” he said,

die away. He teaches us to be cheerful,

and to remember “God's in his heaven, to give a certain amount of instruction

all's right with the world.” in English literature; why not take up Browning, who was born and bred in Florence deserved her prize, though, in Walworth, and in whom, therefore, it her very last sentence, she jeopardized it will be easy to interest Walworth boys by the statement that Mrs. Browning and girls ?” The teachers saw the point, wrote three verses of poetry about her and the thing was done. After many

husband's death! days, or, to be precise, a year, Mr.

Nellie Redfern, of the King and Stead organized an essay competition, Queen Street School, who is only eleven in which a large number of children in years old, puts down a number of simthe various Walworth Board schools ple facts very clearly and correctly. took part. The ages of the children so “The poet,” she says, "received some of competing ranged from eleven to thir- his finest inspirations while roaming teen years.

through the Dulwich Woods." Florence Legge, of the Sayer Street At the same school Edith Isard is Girl's School, was awarded the prize. studying the poet. She writes:An idea of her essay will be gained in

We ought to be proud of having such a the following extracts from it: “Robert

noble and clever man born in this disBrowning," writes Florence:

trict. was born on May 7th, 1812, in James Rawlings of Victory Place Southampton street, Camberwell. He School, fills in the story of Browning's was a handsome, fearless child, with a

boyhood with this interesting informarestless anxiety and a fiery temper. He

tion: clamored for occupation as soon as he could speak. His mother could only keep He was a very shy boy, and had been him quiet by telling him stories (probably seen to run away and hide himself when Bible stories) while holding him on her he was not quite dressed. He always reknee. He was very fond of animals fused to drink his medicine unless he was throughout the whole of his life. He was bribed by a newt or a frog which was very fortunate in having good parents. picked out of the strawberry bed in his His mother

Scotchwoman. garden. Thomas Carlyle says that "she was the type of a true Scottish gentlewoman.” "'God's in His heaven, all's right with Her son (Robert) said (with the honest the world, sang the poor mill-girl, and pride of a good son) that “she was divine," Browning truly believed this to the end while a gentleman friend of hers says that of his life," writes Nita Laurie Drake, “it was like heaven to be near her."

also of Victory Place School, Standard Florence's grasp of young Browning's VII.; and she adds: “It was while walkhome-life is quite equalled by her ap- ing through the fields and leafy lanes preciation of his poetry.

of Dulwich that many of his best ideas

came into his mind." Browning's The poetry of Robert Browning is very

child-critics are doing more to bring out different in style from thatof any other En

this fact than all the Browning Socieglish poet. He is very original. His poetry is real, and has entirely a

ties put together.

W. W.

was

а

new

JULY 10, 1897.

READINGS FROM AMERICAN MAGAZINES.

ers.

as

From The Cosmopolitan. once more. Now and then one or other HUNTING DOWN THE PLAGUE. of them drops and is seen no more. Hunting down the plague is a ghastly Little is said about him; the work goes business. The circumstances and de- on just the same. Duty is the Anglotails of the pursuit could hardly be more Indian's god. redolent of horror and loathsomeness. I shall not give a detailed account of There is something sacred, too, in these what I saw; there was a monotony noisome abysses of human misery, and underlying it all; the experiences of one a certain callousness must be acquired day resembled those of another; the in order to deal with them effectively. vein of revoltingness ran through them

The daily series of visits is accom- all. Sometimes the accompanying plished as rapidly and with as little crowd seemed amused; sometimes they forewarning as may be, so as to give the seemed alarmed; sometimes angry; in people no time to put themselves on general, they did what they could, or guard. The personnel of the visiting dared, to impede and mislead the workparty includes doctors, male and female, civil and military officers, and in- A house was marked down for visitaterested civilians, wito a fringe of tion in the midst of the Bazaar. You police and attendants to keep order and could not see anything of it from the to effect removals, destroy bedding and street; it was screened by other houses; clothing, and apply whitewash, but it was large enough to contain six orders may be given. The visitors meet hundred people. It was built round an with every kind of evasion and passive interior court, perhaps five-and-twenty opposition. Their aim, of course, is to feet square; the four walls inclosing it get at the sick and the dead and to put went staggering upward, story above the former in the hospitals and the story, so that we seemed to stand at the latter wherever they will do the least bottom of a well. But what a well! harm; the aim of the people is to hide The place, even here beneath the open both dead and dying by every device sky, smelt like cesspool. The that ingenuity or desperation suggests. ground under foot was boggy and foul; It is probable that the hiders are suc- it was composed of dung and rotten cessful four times where the seekers are matter of all kinds, and upon investigaonce. The occasions on which decep- tion proved to extend downward to a tions are detected give a notion of the depth of no less than five feet. This multitude that remain unknown. The huge and festering mass of coagulated effort to check the plague is like fighting filth had been accumulating unchecked, in deep water to save a man resolved to deep down in that pit of human habitadrown himself. The labor is enormous, tions, for fifty years past. The heat, the issue well-nigh hopeless; but the quite apart from the poison of the atmoEnglish never relax; they make good sphere was stilling and intolerable; their claim to be the best rulers in the there could never be any movement of world. After the exhaustion of each air in this place, nor could the sunlight day's work they “tub," dress and meet penetrate its hideous depths. But the at the club; they discuss the work and windows of three-score living-rooms the prospects with grim cheerfulness, opened upon it, and this was the atmoand next day at dawn are out and at it sphere which the inhabitants drew into

LIVING AGE. VOL. XV. 753

a

were

their lungs day and night. Daniel in locked them up there in the darkness the den of lions escaped unscathed; but and horror to die a lingering and torthe miracle would have seemed greater tured death; they had done so with the had he passed a night in this pit of hell. victims' full privity and consent, and

The people who crept and peeped the reason was that both parties to the about the place assured us that sickness transaction preferred such an end to of any kind was quite unknown in this accepting the light, air, cleanliness and savory retreat. At the same time they devoted nursing which the government admitted that several families were at offered them. If caste, superstition and the moment on a visit to their friends in ignorance can bring the descendants of the country, and had locked up their a mighty race to this, what lower depth apartments. Hereupon orders

remains for them? And is this the ultigiven to inspect the house from top to mate goal of our clever contemporary bottom, and to break open all closed Theosophists? One wishes the Mahatdoors unless keys were promptly forth- mas would come to Bombay and demoncoming Policemen had already been strate to these turgid English how stationed at the exits of the building to much better than Christianity is the prevent unauthorized escapes.

esoteric doctrine. It was all kindly done; but that noise A locked room, which had been deof forcing locks and breaking doors had clared by inmates of the house to be a cruel and hostile effect. The benefi- empty, was forcibly entered.

It was cent objects in view were explicitly set pitch-dark, but the effluvium that came forth, but the thronging brown faces out of it, and a stirring within, showed listened with expressions of helpless that it was inhabited. Our lantern had incredulity or hopeless resignation. gone out, and had been sent to be reThey believed that within the velvet filled.

“How many

are here?" descabbard was hidden a scimitar of manded the leader of the party. “Nine, steel.

sahib,” was the answer out of the darkThe harvest of disease and death ness, after a pause. “Are there any reaped in that single house was terribly sick ?”' “None, · sahib,”

“Stand up large. Every room entered was dark, against the wall that I may count you." and the breath that came from it was There was a shuffling of feet, and our unbreathable. Some were empty; three eyes, now partly accustomed to the contained each but a single occupant- darkness, could dimly discern a range two were dead and one was dying. In of figures. The inspector stepped one room, at the end of a stiiling and toward them, and laid his hand upon lightless corridor, down which we had the breast of one after another. There groped and stumbled, feeling along the were nine. We might have passed on; filthy walls for possible doors, we found but at this moment the lantern was a mother and her baby locked in and brought up. The inspector took it and left to die alone. The woman was threw its light along the group. barely able to move, but with her last “That man is sick!” he exclaimed after strength she covered with a fold of her moment, pointing to a drooping sari the body of her infant, lest it should shape that was being obviously supbe seen and taken away from her. ported by those next to him. The susThere was no food or water in the room; pected one was brought out and exthere was a number of rats, all dead. amined. He was not sick, but dead, The floor was uneven with the com- and had been so for some hours. pacted grease, rubbish, and excremen- For the other case I cannot personally titious filth of years, and in the dull vouch. A room was opened and half-aflash of the lantern there could be dis- dozen persons were discovered squatcerned an obscure scuttling of obscene ting in a circle on the floor, absorbed in insects, disturbed at their banquet. a cheerful game of cards. A light, con

Now, the family and neighbors of this sisting of a strand of some vegetable mother and her child had complacently substance burning in a pannikin of oil,

a

bung from the wall, throwing a deep Every one has at some time in life felt shadow over the faces of three of the something within him stir in sympathy group. One does not expect a man

with the drum. If one has ever heard it stricken with plague to take part in a in the furious beating of the “rally,” game of cards; but the practiced eye when ranks are broken, and regiments of one of the visitors marked something are fading away under fire, it is someconstrained in the attitude of one of the thing to remember through life-forplayers; he seemed too deeply absorbed ever. Perhaps it sets to glowing that in the game. In truth, he was the sub- spark of heroism or savagery latent in ject of the game, not a participant in it. every human breast, and the spark that When the light was thrown up on his bursts forth into flame when men grapface, it showed the awful features of a ple hand-to-hand for home and liberty. stark and rotting corpse.

What matters it if, as musicians say, From “ The Horrors of the Plague in Bombay.” its music is barbarous-so barbarous By Julian Hawthorne.

that it has but one note? Aiter all, it is the music of the soldier, whether it comes from the metal kettle-drums glit

tering as they swing in the sun at the From St. Nicholas. head of close columns of helmeted men, THE PASSING OF THE DRUM. or from the tom-tom of savage tepees Truly, then, can it be wondered that amidst the cold snows and dark days of after generations of such experiences in Northern winters, or amidst cactus-covreal war, we regret to give up the drum, ered desert sands glowing with the at whose magic touch such changes can fierce heat of tropic suns. Soldiers and be wrought? Could the beating of a warriors all, be they red or white, love gong (more barbarous yet than the its fierce alarum, and not one will die drum), the ringing of a bell, or can even

the less bravely for the dreams that the the piercing notes of the bugle, quite fill drummers and their drums have conits place, and bring that same sup- jured up. pressed though exhilarated excitement

The glory of the drum is passing and readiness for action to those who

away. Of all the regular soldiers toknow its power? I fear not.

day, the Marines are the last to keep a There is in the notes of the drum drum-corps as their field music. something unlike any other music in

After a thousand years' service as the the world. How it sets the heart to most warlike instrument in the armies throbbing and the blood to coursing of Europe and America, the drum must through the veins, as it falls upon the

now take a secondary part; and with it ear! To what stirring scenes has its will soc go the bayonet and the sword, beating been the prelude, and what those heroic relics of the days when the unspeakable sights have

ranks of foemen advanced to look into within the sound of its rollings!

one another's eyes before firing, or In its music there is something that waited for the inspiring roll of the drum sweeps away the sluggishness of every- to urge them to battle. day life, and gives a feeling that is akin The drum will soon sound its own to inspiration. No matter whether it be requiem. With muffled snares and the long roll, breathing alarm as it is arms reversed, let us sadly and sorrowbeaten by startled drummers in the still- fully follow it to the grave, where with ness of the night, or the softer beats bended knee we reverently lay upon it when the snares are muffied and men the laurel wreath of fame. The last march with arms reversed and bowed volley rings out its farewell tribute, and heads behind the bier of a comrade who the bugle sounds the soldiers' last has left the ranks forever, the voice of “good-night!" the drum speaks to the heart and thrills

From “ The Last of the Drums." By Con Marit with courage or sorrow.

rast Perkins, U. S. M. C.

men

seen

:

From The Atlantic Monthly.

So far as the professors are concerned, THE UNIVERSITY PROBLEM IN AMERICA the arrangement is as favorable as can When we turn from Oxford and reasonably be expected.

Of course Jowett to the university problem in they are all bound to lecture, and to lecAmerica, our first impression, maybe, ture several times a week; they exercise is of the total dissimilarity of condi- a general supervision over the labors of tions, and of the hopelessness of deriv. their assistants; they guide the studies ing any lessons from English expe- of advanced students; they conduct the rience. Yet the American reader of examinations for honors and for higher Jowett's biography will be singularly degrees; they carry on a ceaseless correirresponsive if it does not prompt some spondence; and each of them sits upon consideration of the functions of the a couple of committees. But they are university in this country. In what I not absolutely compelled to undertake have left to say, I shall confine myself much drudging work in the way of into Harvard, with which alone, among struction, and if they are careful of American universities, I have any inti- their time they can manage to find leismate acquaintance.

ure for their own researches. As soon The peculiarity in the position of Har- as “a course" gets large, a benevolent vard is that while the professorial ideal corporation will provide an assistant. has definitely triumphed among the The day is past when they were obliged, teaching body, the tutorial ideal is still in the phrase of Lowell, “to double the cherished by the “constituency.” Most parts of professor and tutor.” of the professors care first of all for the But the soil of America is not as proadvancement of science and scholar pitious as one could wish to the plant of ship; they prefer lectures to large academic leisure. It is a bustling ataudiences to the catechetical instruc- mosphere; and a professor needs some tion of multiplied “sections,” and they strength of mind to resist the temptawould leave students free to attend tion to be everlastingly “doing” somelectures or neglect them, at their own thing obvious. The sacred reserves of peril; they would pick out the abler time and energy need to be jealously men, and initiate them into the proc- guarded; and there is more than one esses of investigation in small “re- direction from which they are threatsearch courses" or "seminaries;" and, to ened. University administration occube perfectly frank, they are not greatly pies what would seem an unduly large interested in the ordinary undergradu. number of men and an unduly large ate. On the other hand, the university amount of time; it is worth while conconstituency-represented, as I am told, sidering whether more executive auby the overseers-insists that the ordi- thority should not be given to the deans. nary undergraduate shall be “looked Then there is the never ending stream after;" that he shall not be allowed to of legislation, or rather, of legislative “waste his time;" that he shall be discussion. I must confess that when I "pulled up” by frequent examinations, have listened, week after week, to and forced to do a certain minimum of faculty debates, the phrase of Mark work, whether he wants to or not. The Pattison about Oxford has sometimes result of this pressure has been the rung in my ears: “the tone as of a lively establishment of an elaborate machinery municipal borough.” It would be unof periodical examination, the carry- just to apply it; for, after all, the measing on of a vaster book-keeping for the ures under debate have been of farregistration of attendanceand of grades reaching importance. Yet if any means than was ever before seen at any uni- could be devised to hasten the progress versity, and the appointment of a legion of business, it would be a welcome savof Junior instructors and assistants, to ing of time. Still another danger is the whom is assigned the drudgery of read- pecuniary temptation-hardly resistible ing examination-books and conducting by weak human nature—to repeat col"conferences."

lege lectures to the women students of

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