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Of full performance, honour that,
Such honour, with a conduct wise
God, who may be well
Whereby, from his unweeting side,
The one in the whole world opposite
I do not say Love's youth returns ;
Be grateful and most glad thereof.
And henceforth very well may wait
Of this we are certified, that we
It cannot be! The Scriptures tell Only what's inexpressible, And, 'gainst each word, to make it right, Themselves propound the opposite. Beware ; for fiends in triumph laugh O'er him who learns the truth by half ! Beware ; for God will not endure For men to make their hope more pure Than His good promise, or require Another than the five-string'd lyre Which He has vow'd again to the hands Of whomsoever understands
To tune it justly here! Beware
P A RIS REVISITED,
BY ONE WHO KNEW IT WELL.
SECOND ARTICLE I HAVE said that there were hopeful ing among the foremost establishments in elements in Imperial France. Far more, their respective trades. There are the no doubt, than any that I had a chance of patriarchs of French associative labour, seeing at work. But of the reality of three the "jewellers in gilt,” doing their quiet I had the means of convincing myself, business of about 8,0001. a year, who the Associations Ouvrières, or manu- date already since 1834. There is the facturing and trading associations of great association of masons, numbering working men — young French Protes- its hundred members, with a number tantism-Liberal Roman Catholicism. of smaller associations in the building
Whilst with us the cooperative prin- trades following in its wake; it has ciple among the working classes has suffered during the past year through been mainly applied to consumption, or some ill-judged undertakings, but is has used consumption as the leverage seeking now how best to avail itself for production, it has, on the contrary, of the lessons of the past. There are started in France from production itself. the arm-chair makers and the joiners I had visited Paris in 1849, when the of the Cour St. Joseph, who have “Working Associations” were num- weathered all the tricks of their manabered by the hundred. I had seen gers, and have never lost their reputaseveral of them, some of which are tion for good work. There are the defunct, whilst others still subsist. The chair-turners of the Rue Popincourt, total number of them is now reduced to with their vast workshops, abundant twenty-seven-almost all, indeed, rank- stock, and admirably solid wares. There
are the file-makers, busy at work as ever on the patent which they have secured for themselves. There are the saddletree-makers of the Rue Pétrelle, one of the bodies in which employers and workers amicably coalesced. There are the jewellers—a different set from those above mentioned-brush-makers, lantern-makers, lamp-makers, a truly heroic band ; umbrella and cane-makers, spectacle-makers, who unfortunately are said to be invaded by the mammonite spirit, and to be fast verging into a mere partnership. There are the tailors of the Rue Coq-Héron, a body, the existence of which was new to me, though dating, I believe, more than ten years back; at first such determined Proudhonists, that they endeavoured to do without capital or profit, charging cost-price to their customers, till a few failures to pay among the latter compelled them to be less absolute in their commercial principles; a somewhat singular set, who have kept studiously aloof from their associated brethren, but have, nevertheless, clung tenaciously together during the many years of imperial rule.
To my great disappointment, I had leisure to see but a few of those even which I have named, though I might have had access to all of them had time allowed. Let me say at once, that for those who have no clue to them, they are not easy to find out. Few have been able to retain the outward name of “association;' most of them only bear towards the public the style of ordinary or commandite partnerships. Only those who are aware of the facts will know to look for the associated masons under the firm of “ Bouyer, Cohadon et Cie.," or for the jewellers in gilt, under that of “Dreville, Thibout et Cie.” Whilst if any visitor, unprovided with a trustworthy introduction, should attempt to make inquiry into these bodies, he has but himself and the Imperial régime to thank, if he finds himself received with coldness and distrust. For the very existence of these associations is, so to speak, a standing miracle. In the days of the first brutalities of the Imperialist
reaction, there was scarcely one but had its manager thrown into prison, or obliged to take to flight for fear of arrest. Thanks, it is believed, to the interference of the supreme ruler himself, the period of active persecution has indeed passed away—but under what conditions ! So long as the several associations keep to themselves as towards the public, hold little or ng intercourse with others, make no show of their existence, make no effort to propagate their principles, or to educate their members, they are left unmolested, at least by the supreme government itself. But it is only within the last few months, that one of them which had, for a wonder, retained outside its premises the title of “Association fraternelle des ...," was compelled by a new commissary of police, with much ill-language, to erase the obnoxious profession of brotherhood. All must be prepared, at any time, to receive the prying visits of this personage, on some such pretext as that of asking whether they have lately sent away any workmen. (This happened to one of them within a fortnight of my seeing it.) Although the emperor, personally, may not be unfriendly to them, they know well that, under the arbitrary Imperial régime, they are at the mercy of any hasty, spiteful, or over-zealous official; that their managers may be arrested and placed au secret, i. e., cut off from all communications, their books of business seized and carried off, long before any complaint could reach the fountain-head of power. And although, by the peculiar strength of their constitution and principles, they have, in many instances, been able to weather such a blow when it has fallen upon them, the dread of seeing the like recur acts with a paralysing force.
The check placed upon the intellectual development of the people is not less cruel. Complaints are rife on all sides of the ignorance of the working men ; they themselves acknowledge it, bewail it. The workshops of the associations would seem to afford the very areas on which to supply the required