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- what is the face of nature—what is the state of the useful arts -what is the degree of knowledge which exists there. Every reader will be glad to learn these things, or some of them: but few, we imagine, will care to know whether he had a lean horse at this stage, or a fat horse at another—whether his supper at any given village was milk without eggs, or eggs without milk. A little gossip and a few adventures, are very well; but a book of gossip and adventures, especially when related without wit or discretion, had better not be.
USE OF CONQUERORS.*
NOTHING in this world is created in vain: lions, tigers, conquerors, have their use. Ambitious monarchs, who are the curse of civilized nations, are the civilizers of savage people. With a number of little independent hordes, civilization is impossible. They must have a common interest before there can be peace; and be directed by one will, before there can be order. When mankind are prevented from daily quarrelling and fighting, they first begin to improve; and all this, we are afraid, is only to be accomplished, in the first instance, by some great conqueror. We sympathize, therefore, with the victories of the King of Ashantee-and feel ourselves, for the first time, in love with military glory. The exEmperor of the French would, at Coomassie, Dogwumba, or Inta, be an eminent benefactor to the human race.
NATURE AT BOTANY BAY.†
BOTANY BAY is situated in a fine climate, rather Asiatic than European-with a great variety of temperature-but favourable, on the whole, to health and life. It, conjointly with Van Diemen's Land, produces coal in great abundance, fossil salt, slate, lime, plumbago, potter's clay; iron; white, yellow and brilliant topazes; alum and copper. These are all the important fossil productions which have been hitherto discovered; but the epidermis of the country has hardly as yet been scratched; and it is most probable * From a review of Mission from Cape Coast Castle to Ashantee. By T. Edward Bowdich. Ed. Rev., Oct., 1819.
↑ Art. "Botary Bay." Fd. Rev., July, 1819.
that the immense mountains which divide the eastern and western settlements, Bathurst and Sydney, must abound with every species of mineral wealth. The harbours are admirable; and the whole world, perhaps, cannot produce two such as those of Port Jackson and Derwent. The former of these is land-locked for fourteen miles in length, and of the most irregular form; its soundings are more than sufficient for the largest ships; and all the navies of the world might ride in safety within it. In the harbour of Derwent there is a road-stead forty-eight miles in length, completely land-locked;-varying in breadth from eight to two miles -in depth from thirty to four fathoms-and affording the best anchorage the whole way.
The mean heat, during the three summer months, December, January, and February, is about 80° at noon. The heat which such a degree of the thermometer would seem to indicate, is considerably tempered by the sea-breeze, which blows with considerable force from nine in the morning till seven in the evening. The three autumn months are March, April, and May, in which the thermometer varies from 55° at night to 75° at noon. The three winter months are June, July, and August. During this interval, the mornings and evenings are very chilly, and the nights excessively cold; hoar-frosts are frequent; ice, half an inch thick, is found twenty miles from the coast; the mean temperature at daylight is from 40° to 45°, and at noon, from 55 to 60°. In the three months of spring, the thermometer varies from 60° to 70°. The climate to the westward of the mountains is colder. Heavy falls of snow take place during the winter; the frosts are more severe, and the winters of longer duration. All the seasons are much more distinctly marked, and resemble much more those of this country.
Such is the climate of Botany Bay; and, in this remote part of the earth, Nature (having made horses, oxen, ducks, geese, oaks, elms, and all regular and useful productions for the rest of the world), seems determined to have a bit of play, and to amuse herself as she pleases. Accordingly, she makes cherries with the stone on the outside; and a monstrous animal, as tall as a grenadier, with the head of a rabbit, a tail as big as a bed-post, hopping along at the rate of five hops to a mile, with three or four young kangaroos looking out of its false uterus to see what is passing.
Then comes a quadruped as big as a large cat, with the eyes, colour and skin of a mole, and the bill and web-feet of a duck-puzzling Dr. Shaw, and rendering the latter half of his life miserable, from his utter inability to determine whether it was a bird or a beast. Add to this a parrot, with the legs of a sea-gull; a skate with the head of a shark; and a bird of such monstrous dimensions, that a side bone of it will dine three real carnivorous Englishmen;-together with many other productions that agitate Sir Joseph, and fill him with mingled emotions of distress and delight.
An excellent and well-arranged dinner is a most pleasing occurrence, and a great triumph of civilized life. It is not only the descending morsel and the enveloping sauce-but the rank, wealth, the learned managewit and beauty, which surround the meatsment of light and heat-the silent and rapid services of the attendants—the smiling and sedulous host, proffering gusts and relishes the exotic bottles-the embossed plate-the pleasant remarks the handsome dresses-the cunning artifices in fruit and farina! The hour of dinner, in short, includes everything of sensual and intellectual gratification which a great nation glories in producing.
In the midst of all this, who knows that the kitchen chimney caught fire half an hour before dinner!—and that a poor little wretch, of six or seven years oid, was sent up in the midst of the flames to put it out? We could not, previous to reading this evidence, have formed a conception of the miseries of these poor wretches, or that there should exist, in a civilized country, a class of human beings destined to such extreme and varied distress. . .. We have been thus particular in stating the case of the chimney-sweepers, and in founding it upon the basis of facts, that we make an answer to those profligate persons who are always ready to fling an air of ridicule upon the labours of humanity, because they are desirous that what they have not virtue to do themselves, should appear to be foolish and romantic when done by others. A still higher degree of depravity than this, is to want every sort of compassion for human misery, when it is accompanied *Ed. Rev., Oct., 1819.
by filth, poverty and ignorance-to regulate humanity by the income tax, and to deem the bodily wretchedness and the dirty tears of the poor a fit subject for pleasantry and contempt. We should have been loath to believe that such deep-seated and disgusting immorality existed in these days; but the notice of it is forced upon us. Nor must we pass over a set of marvellously weak gentlemen who discover democracy and revolution in every effort to improve the condition of the lower orders, and to take off a little of the load of misery from those points where it presses the hardest. Such are the men into whose hearts Mrs. Fry has struck the deepest terror-who abhor Mr. Bentham and his penitentiary; Mr. Bennet and his hulks; Sir James Mackintosh and his bloodless assizes; Mr. Tuke and his sweeping machines-and every other human being who is great and good enough to sacrifice his quiet to his love for his fellow-creatures. Certainly we admit that humanity is sometimes the veil of ambition or of faction; but we have no doubt that there are a great many excellent persons to whom it is misery to see misery, and pleasure to lessen it; and who, by calling the public attention to the worst cases, and by giving birth to judicious legislative enactments for their improvement, have made, and are making the world somewhat happier than they found it. Upon these principles we join hands with the friends of the chimney-sweepers, and most heartily wish for the diminution of their numbers and the limitation of their trade.
CASTLEREAGH, CANNING, AND GRATTAN."
THERE are two eminent Irishmen now in the House of Commons, Lord Castlereagh and Mr. Canning, who will subscribe to the justness of every syllable we have said upon this subject; and who have it in their power, by making it the condition of their remaining in office, to liberate their native country and raise it to its just rank among the nations of the earth. Yet the court buys
them over, year after year, by the pomp and perquisites of office, and year after year they come into the House of Commons, feeling deeply and describing powerfully, the injuries of five millions of their countrymen—and continue members of a government that inflicts those evils, under the pitiful delusion that it is not a cabinet question as if the scratchings and quarrellings of kings and The conclusion of an Article on Ireland. Ed. Rev., Nov., 1820.
queens could alone cement politicians together in dissoluble unity, while the fate and fortune of one third of the empire might be complimented away from one minister to another, without the smallest breach in their cabinet alliance. Politicians, at least honest politicians, should be very flexible and accommodating in little things, very rigid and inflexible in great things. And is this not a great thing? Who has painted it in finer and more commanding eloquence than Mr. Canning? Who has taken a more sensible and statesmanlike view of our miserable and cruel policy than Lord Castlereagh? You would think, to hear them, that the same planet could not contain them and the oppressors of their country-perhaps not the same solar system. Yet for money, claret and patronage, they lend their countenance, assistance, and friendship, to the ministers who are the stern and inflexible enemies to the emancipation of Ireland!
Thank God that all is not profligacy and corruption in the history of that devoted people-and that the name of Irishman does not always carry with it the idea of the oppressor or the oppressed -the plunderer or the plundered-the tyrant or the slave. Great men hallow a whole people and lift up all who live in their time. What Irishman does not feel proud that he has lived in the days of GRATTAN? who has not turned to him for comfort, from the false friends and open enemies of Ireland? who did not remember him in the days of its burnings, and wastings, and murders? No government ever dismayed him—the world could not bribe him -he thought only of Ireland-lived for no other object-dedicated to her his beautiful fancy, his elegant wit, his manly courage and all the splendour of his astonishing eloquence. He was so born and so gifted, that poetry, forensic skill, elegant literature and all the highest attainments of human genius, were within his reach; but he thought the noblest occupation of a man was to make other men happy and free; and in that straight line he went on for fifty years, without one side-look, without one yielding thought, without one motive in his heart which he might not have laid open to the view of God and man. He is gone!-but there is not a single day of his honest life of which every good Irishman. would not be more proud, than of the whole political existence of his countrymen the annual deserters and betrayers of their