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came a regularly organized, parliamentary | civilian. Willingly he would have excounter-government, in which, for a mo- claimed with Robespierre: “If only I ment, all party differences were laid aside, understood something about these military Its decisions were secret, and remained matters, would not I do without the miliinviolate until the moment appointed by tary!” As he could not do without, he the Chamber for putting them into execu: wanted to have one of those plumed heroes tion. M. Grévy declared this manner of devoted to him, one whose popularity
ng MacMahon unconstitutional, and should complete his own, one who would even insurrectional; but the eighteen had remain docile and submissive, and should so decided it, and the House followed be the sword of the democracy, as he them to the end. The task in which he (Clémenceau) was its head. For France, was employed was one thoroughly congen. with its love of show and pomp, journalists ial to Clémenceau's temperament. There were not enough ; a sabre was wanted. is nothing he seems to enjoy so much as It was indeed a bad hour for France overturning a ministry, and he boasts that when M. Clémenceau forced General Bouhe has overturned more ministries than langer, as minister of war, on the weakany other man now living in France. ness of M. de Freycinet, his relative. It
In his opinion a necessary evolution is a matter of history how M. Clemenmust give the power to each faction of the ceau's foolhardy venture very nearly Republican party in succession. Need. became a shameful one ; he woke up, less to say that each has considered itself only just in time, from his fool's paradise the last term in this evolution. While to perceive that his general was borrowGambetta would have stopped this trans- ling prestige from him, giving him none in lation of power at his own group, Clémen. return. Then he was among the first to ceau went further, and imagined it to be turn upon “the man on horseback.” But meant for him and his. When the Wad. it was not he, but Constans, who saved dington ministry fell, Clémenceau said : France from that iniquity. “ Now it is Gambetta's turn, and then it is In a word, if, after twenty years, the mine."
French Republic is still a party, and not He was at the time the proprietor of the an unquestioned government; if this newspaper La Justice, and besides this, party itself be split up, as it is, into four, in the clubs, in the corridors, in the House, five, six factions; if the Constitution he ceaselessly labored to prepare the way which has restored a little order to France for his own aggrandizement. By the pro- be in danger of falling; if an immense posal of a law on landed property by which amount of energy and goodwill has been no one was to be allowed to possess more expended in vain; if ill.intentioned perthan five hectares, he curried favor with sons have found easy opportunities of the Red Republicans of Montmartre, doing harm; if there is rarely a majority Charon, Belleville, and Menilmontant. in the Chamber; if the parliamentary When Gambetta died, Clémenceau flat- morals and customs of which it has been tered himself that the greatest obstacle to the scene have become acclimatized in his political career had been removed. France, greatly to her discredit in Europe But Ferry was tough, and, moreover, M. a large measure of the responsibility Grévy disliked Clémenceau, and never must be attached to M. Clémenceau. Just thought of calling the Extreme Left to as he was more highly gifted he is the office.
more guilty, - guilty of what he has done, It would almost appear as if it was and of what he has prevented being done. wounded vanity at not being able to come In private life M. Clémenceau is most into power that caused M. Clémenceau charming, always ready, if possible, to to try to obtain it by indirect means. It grant a favor, and endowed with consid. was he who invented that disgrace of con- erable æsthetic perceptions and much temporary France, Boulangism – that is artistic good taste. to say, the upraising of a man of straw to pose as the liberator and regenerator of The strongest man in France at the France. It is said that he arrived at this present moment,
the man of om by the following mode of reasoning: Gam- the world will probably hear a good deal betta's popularity helped the repuiation of more in the future, is' M. Constans, minthe army, and the reputation of the army ister of the interior. The son of an helped Gambetta's popularity. He (Clé. officer of the first empire, he was born menceau) had no National Defence in his in 1834, at Toulouse, of a father who once earlier history, he had never organized had been rich, but who lost his fortune and directed armies, he was too much of a before his son was started in life. The
son took his legal degree at the age of ence. But great moral courage is his twenty-two, but, despising the law, he salient trait. It is related that one day a became a railway contractor, a profession waiter at the Café de la Paix came to tell in wbich he ruined himself, despite his him that he had overheard Boulanger say: great activity and enterprise. At the age “ If I don't kill Constans, he will kill me.” of thirty-two he returned to his legal“ Really," replied Constans, " that is the studies, and after four years the railway only sensible remark of Boulanger's I contractor became professor of Roman have ever heard.” Certainly Constaps is law at Toulouse, then national councillor, not the kind of man to kill any one. It finally deputy, minister, and governor of has been acutely remarked that there is Indian China. On returning to France much more of the fisherman than of the from his post of governor-general, a friend gunner in him. He perceives bis prey, asked him, in June, 1888, what he thought throws in his line, gently plays with his of Boulangism, which at the time was at fish, draws him up and down stream, and its height. “I will tell you,” replied then, just when he might land bin and Constans," when I have seen the man.” finish him, he stops. He prefers making A fortnight iater he had seen the man, his adversary disappear rather than kill and said to his friend: “ Boulanger is him. In Boulanger's case it were hard to hollow; Boulangism is a big practical say whether Constans' cleverness or Boujoke.” Nevertheless, at that moment the langer's stupidity were the chief instrupractical joke was taking alarming pro- ments that brought about success. But portions, and everybody in France, and certainly, Constans is a great tactician. many persons in Europe, were convinced He never drops a card unless it is a bad that it would prove successful. Even the one, and then in order that some one else government, influenced by the surround. may pick it up. His whole strength lies ing atmosphere, was wavering and break in his psychological perceptions; he has ing up; resistance seemed useless, defeat a keen intuition of the human soul with certain. And yet Boulanger was con- which he has to deal. Gambetta used to quered, and it is to Constans in largest attack situations, Constans attacks men. measure that this is due. He saved the He acts on principle, although he is acrepublic, and saved France from a danger cused of having none. The professor of that would have been an ignominy. At law is still strong in him; he proceeds by the moment that Boulangism was at its regular phrases, each begioning, “Seeing apotheosis, Constans alone shrugged his that,” etc., and in his calculations he is shoulders, and said: “You will see the scientific as well as calculating. “If this new Chamber will count three hundred is equal to that, such-and-such a result and sixty-two or three hundred and sixty- must be brought about by such-and-such a five Republicans.". It counted three combination.' He never speaks or acts hundred and sixty-six.
unless he is thoroughly convinced, and his Like many another eminent Frenchman, conviction is so strong that it magnetizes Constans is a Southerner, and has many others and convinces them too. Herein of the Southerners' peculiar qualities. lies his main strength ; bis will is a mag. Unlike a Southerner, however, he is not net, and by it he has magnetized France. much of a talker; Acta non verba is His great firmness in office, his cleverness his device. He abhors long speeches, and in administration, has given him the sunever intoxicates himself with his own premacy which he undoubtedly holds at eloquence, as meridionals are so apt to the present moment. Nevertheless, it do. He bas, in a supreme degree, the must not be for one moment supposed that gift of contempt, as he showed in his ap: he is popular. Like Jules Ferry, he en preciation of Boulanger. Another and joys the hatred of the masses, and is more important gift is his innate concep-accused of the most infamous and dishontion of duty. He is inflexible himself in orable crimes. this matter, and expects every one else to Constans is a successful man in society,
When he returned from China, and much beloved of his convivial friends. and found himself placed between tri. He is a member of the club called La umphant Boulangism and the apparently Luscrambo (a provincial word meaning ruined republic, he did not hesitate a glow-worm), much frequented by meridiomoment to take side with the weaker nal artists. Billiards, however, are more party, but went straight ahead to face the in honor at this club than politics. In apdanger, which was literally a mortal one, pearance Constans shows no great charac and which imperilled bis own political, ter; his face is not remarkable, it is only and perhaps also his own material, exist. | his eyes that betray his power
Southern eyes, of which it is difficult to second time is for the fools, and these read the hidden meaning. They con- are in the majority outside the Chamber stantly convey an impression of being shut and even inside.” M. Floquet has not and seeming tired, and they avoid meeting much regard for fools; he does not repeat a direct gaze. His general aspect is that his epigrams. His enemies say that he of a bonhomme, as the French would say. has ticketed himself as “incorruptible like His enemies declare that he looks like a Robespierre, and handsome like Saint grocer. He has a most marvellous mem- Just' - at least, his enemies declare that ory and can repeat books that he has read he has so labelled himself; and they go from cover to cover. He has also an as on to add that from that moment he has tonishing memory for music; but with been the captive of the Revolution, and regard to this it is jokingly said that his has walked all his political life, like a sandmemory is Italian - he can recall all the wich-man, between two boards, on one of words and music of an Italian opera, but which was painted Robespierre, and on he cannot remember a single French air. the other Saint Just, his own head only Like many men of the South, he is very appearing vaguely above the boards, and superstitious; he is afraid of sitting down presenting a forced resemblance to a thirteen at table, and always, they say, puts rather artificial Danton. His dominant a piece of old iron under his chair to keep hobbies are a revision of the constitution, away evil influences. Since he came into in order to give more power to universal office there has certainly been a notable suffrage, and a new system of taxation change in the direction of French politics. which should bring about a fairer distriHis clear-sighted determination has been bution of imposts. The men whom he of immense value to the tranquillity of the managed to group around him were moved State, and, so long as he holds the author- much more by a suspicion of Boulanger ity of government, is likely that the than any sympathy, with Floquet; and third republic will be able to continue its now that Boulanger is dead, it is possible existence.
that Floquet, too, may subside into oblivWith M. Constans we close the list of ion. the leading statesman of modern France; but there remain a large number of minor Another man whom the disappearance men who are also making their mark upon from the scene of Boulanger has also the course of events. We will mention a largely deprived of his political raison few of the most prominent.
d'être is M. Alfred Naquet, the man who
was the brain of the gallant general, who In 1888 Charles Thomas Floquet was wrote his speeches for him, and who president of the council. He, like so pulled the wires of that good looking pupmany of his compeers, began his career as pet, who was occupied, meanwhile, with a lawyer, passing from jurisprudence to red carnations, fine ladies, and dainty supjournalism. He is to this day a contrib- pers. By profession a scientific chemist, utor to the Temps and the Siècle. His by birth an Israelite, he entered into podistinguishing feature when in office was litical life in 1878, opening up a campaign that he was willing to let everything go, in favor of a union of all the Republicans. and to insist op nothing – the very con- He wrote in the Revue Bleue and the Estrary of M. Constans, who knows what he tafette, and he spoke in the Chamber in means and intends to do it. Like so many tavor of a constitution modelled on that of of his countrymen, also, he is enamoured of the United States. It was this hobby which words, and, above all things, of epigrams, led him to take up Boulanger, whom he by wbich he is ever seeking to make thought Inight be utilized for carrying out effects. A few of these will always remain his ideas; while, on the other hand, the attached to his name, as, for example, his Monarchical party were utilizing this same address to Boulanger: “ At your age, M. Boulanger in order to support their aspile Général Boulanger, Napoleon was al-rations. He will be remembered as the ready dead, and you will be nothing but man who gave the Divorce Law to France. the Sièyes of a orn constitution; his apostrophe to Monsignor Freppel : Among the most important measures “ You bishops are the prefects of the passed in France within the last ten years pope.” M. Thiers was in the habit of say- is M. Goblet's loi des maires. M. Goblet, ing, in order to excuse his redundancies who was a barrister, entered public life as of speech : “It is not too much to repeat secretary of state in the ministry of justice the same thing twice; the first time that in 1879. He had practised at the bar at one says it, it is for intelligent people, the Amiens with considerable s'access, and in
that city founded at the close of the em- | factions of the Republican party; a propire a democratic newspaper. From the gramme which it was of course impossible beginning of his career he distinguished to realize, as every one of the factions himself by pronounced republican senti- desired that its dominant ideas should bements and hostilities to all reactionaries. come those adopted by the whole party. He is a Liberal in the Jacobin sense Since his resignation he has played do Liberal, that is to say, as the first revolu- prominent part. tion was Liberal, with the guillotine for a corrective. ** Liberty or Death” is the M. Ribot, the present French minister watchword of this fiery enthusiast and of foreign affairs, officially untried as yet, of the party he represents. The compa- possesses the gift of practical parliamentriot of Robespierre, he possesses some tary eloquence to a high degree; and, as of Robespierre's qualities. Worthy of he belongs to no pronounced school, it is Robespierre was the amendment he intro possible that he will make himself popular duced in the press laws, authorizing the among the various elements with whom he government to suppress any newspaper has to deal. His aspirations are to see they chose by the mere decision of the France a species of Swiss republic, paministers in Council. In the Ferry Cab- cific, laborious, and keeping outside of all inet Goblet was chosen minister of public European agitation. instruction and worship, and in this post he showed great energy. It was he who M. Rouvier has proved his mettle, and is prompted the deconsecration of the Pan- a finance minister who may stand worthily théon, and who replied so sternly to the beside M. Léon Say. His determined protests made by the Archbishop of Paris. action with regard to the scandals of the Before the elections of 1885 he addressed Copper Ring, and the able way in which a circular to all the bishops, recommend he saved the Paris market from a financial ing them to enjoin on the clergy a policy disaster which might have been tremenof non-intervention in politics. When his dous, have given the test of his capacity. orders were disobeyed be stopped the pay The victory achieved by him was as great of certain priests, claiming for the gov- as that of M. Constans in crushing Bou. ernment the right to act thus, as being the langer. The French finances are not in only check it has upon ecclesiastics. He a flourishing state just now; the war does not, for the present, however, think burdens are heavier than even that rich it possible to separate the Church from the country can bear; and France has the State, as he admits that, up to date, this unenviable distinction of being to-day the would be contrary to the wishes of the most heavily taxed country in Europe. majority. Twice called upon to form a Whether the policy of strenuous protection Cabinet, he failed to bring together a work. which seems to be becoming the keynote ing ministry; but under Floquet he was of French financial affairs will be found to appointed minister of foreign affairs, and answer in the end, and whether the people showed himself very successful in treating will be able or willing to bear additional several delicate matters, as, for example, burdens, is a question the future can alone the Suez Convention, and the question of decide. To us English this protection schools in Tunis raised by Signor Crispi. policy appears a suicidal one, and as yet He is, perhaps, one of the ablest men now there has been no appearance of increased acting together with Carnot, but he will prosperity in France to justify those who never take a leading position.
hold this doctrine.
Of M. Spuller, M. Léon Say, M. Tony M. Brisson, who has also held the post Révillon, M. Deroulède, M. Turquet, and of president of the council, is among the M. Tirard, the limits of our space will not most characteristic leaders of the Repub- allow us to speak. They are men who lican party. He, too, is a lawyer by pro- all, in their turn, have had an influence fession. At the age of eighteen, together upon parliamentary affairs, and are all with Vacherot, Pelletan, and others, he Republicans. founded, in 1854, the first republican paper issued in the Quartier Latin. He The Imperialist party has but one man afterwards passed on to the staff of Le of note to show, and he is rather notorious Temps, but found it too moderately re. than noted. We refer to the hot-headed publican for him. When he became the M. Paul de Cassagnac, journalist, politihead of the Cabinet, in 1885, his pro- cian, and swordsman. He has, perhaps, gramme was inspired by the desire to re- fought more political duels in his time establish concord between the various than any other man in contemporary Eu.
rope. A great favorite at the Tuileries | fort published in the Figaro most slashing during the time of the second empire, he articles against the second empire, till, at received much court protection. At Se- last, the editor was afraid to keep him, for dan he was taken prisoner. After his fear of incurring the ill-favor of the em. release he re-entered political life, and be- peror. He turned him off, but advised came director of Le Pays, and Imperial him to found a newspaper of his own. champion in the Chamber. Duel after This was the origin of the famous La duel did he fight in the Imperialist cause, Lanterne. The popularity of the new pa. until at last, perhaps tired of this amuse- per was tremendous, much to the alarm of ment, he refused successively to fight both Napoleon and his court. Every effort was M. Rochefort and Clémenceau, alleging made to throw discredit upon Rochefort. that he had entered in phase du travail. At last, one day, tired of being calumniClémenceau added, la phase où l'on seated, he went to demand satisfaction of an dérobe. The Chamber has had to con- editor who had published a number of demn him again and again for offensive scurrilous pamphlets against him. The behavior and insults to deputies, and his editor was insolent. Rochefort knocked violent language in Le Pays draws down him down; and for this he was condemned upon him repeated fines and various im- to a year's imprisonment and a fine of ten prisonments. It was he who tried to ex- thousand francs, together with the loss of cite Marshal MacMahon to' make a coup his civil and political rights. This send'état. During the discussion of Jules tence amounted to extinguishing his career Ferry's educational laws, he publicly ac- as a journalist and a politician. Rochefort, cused Ferry of having falsified a docu- therefore, fled from France, and took refment, and refused to retract the accusa. uge in Belgium, where he continued to tion. It caused no little surprise, on the publish his Lanterne, which, although it prince imperial's death, to find there was was prohibited, found its way into France no mention of Cassagnac in his will. The in large numbers. Many French exiles journalist transferred his allegiance to were at the time living in Brussels, among Prince Jerome, whom a few years before them Victor Hugo, who received Rochehe had reviled. But in 1880, in conse. fort with open arms and the words, “Voilà quence of a battle between his paper and mon troisième fils.” another, there arose that schism between The imperial government had hoped to Prince Victor and Prince Jerome which is snuff out Rochefort and extinguish La so notorious. Cassagnac sided with the Lanterne at one breath; but Rochefort younger man. It may be said that he is safe across the frontier continued his fiery the high priest of N'importequiism, or denunciations of the emperor and his satsolutionism – that is to say, anything and ellites, and La Lanterne flamed as brilanybody rather than the present régime. liantly as ever. Amongst the adherents It was 'this N'importequiism which led of the court of the Tuileries, one and one France to Boulangism.
only, young Baroche, son of the Garde des
Sceaux, had the courage to challenge the Another hot-headed member of the fire-eater. The duel that ensued was a French Chamber is Henri Rochefort, a peculiarly fierce one, both parties disnoble belonging to the very ancient family played great courage; young Baroche was of Berry. He began his career by writing wounded in three places and Rochefort dramatic reviews for the newspapers – the came off triumphant. Soon the difficulties only form of criticism that was then al- of finding new dodges for smuggling the lowed by the jealous censorship of Napo- prohibited Lanterne into France became leon II). His articles proved an enormous insurmountable. So Le Rappel was startsuccess; for, though they pretended to ed, with Vacquerie, Meurice, Charles, deal with the drama, they were really lev. François, Victor Hugo, and Rochefort, as elled at the empire, and he had a way of its staff, and a fresh campaign was begun saying things so subtly that it was difficult against the empire, despite fines and imto bring against him an action for ibel. prisonments. The signs were not wanting Moreover, he wielded his sword with as that the empire was beginning to totter much skill as his pen, which not a little towards its fall; how that fall was to come, helped his reputation as a journalist in a and the depth to which it was to drag country where duelling is as much a part France, no one could then foresee. of a journalist's profession as the correct. At the election for the Corps Législatif ing of proof.sheets. As soon as the re- in 1869, the Republicans felt that the time strictions imposed on the press with regard had come to make an effort, and pass from to politics were a little slackened, Roche. I words to action. The Quartier Latin called