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IS ENGLAND TO LOSE COMMAND OF THE SEA ? tion, against only four of Great Britain, with an agORD GEORGE HAMILTON contributes to the
gregate tonnage of 56,000. But at the time I am National Review a dispassionate and statesman
writing, on three out of the four · no actual like paper on the question : " Is England's Sea-Power
work has yet begun." to be Maintained ?" In discussing this he carefully
“ These figures," says Lord Hamilton, “indicate an abstains from partisan recriminations or alarmist
urgent danger ahead." rhetoric. He quotes Mr. Gladstone's “perfect " sat
The Law of Sea Power. isfaction at the adequacy and capacity ” of the British Navy, and then proceeds to give a plain state
The agitation for a strengthened British navy
naturally finds reflection in the magazines. “Nautiment of the facts : “ The purposes for which the
cus," who writes from the point of view of “ a naval British Navy exists are the protection of the colonies,
expert of neutral nationality," and of “a publicist commerce and territories of the British Empire, against the united naval forces of the two strongest
who finds in the Indépendance Belge a tribune," exexisting foreign fleets, by maintaining against such a
pounds in the Fortnightly the laws of “Sea-Power ; combination the command of the sea. .. France
Its Past and Future.” He calls attention to the great and Russia happened to be then, and are still, those
discovery published three years ago, by Captain
Mahan, of the United States Navy. This was a distwo powers, and, therefore, their fleets, present and prospective, form the test.”
covery of the simple fact that sea-power, whether Lord Hamilton reasons that since other nations have
local or universal, cannot be enjoyed by more than few distant coaling stations and their battleships have
one tenant in any given district, and of the law that inferior coaling capacity, the great naval struggle, if it
“ sea-power, or mastery of any sea, in proportion as came at all, would most probably occur in European
it is complete, confers upon its possessor an ultimately waters. Hence comparison between the British and
dominating position with regard to all the countries the allied navies must leave out of count “all British
the coasts of which border that sea.” This law is veri
fied in the great wars of history in which navies took foreign squadrons abroad (except the Mediterranean)
part. Captain Mahan's demonstration of it has as being too remote from the central conflict, and as
“roused the dockyards of Europe and America to being mainly composed as second-class cruisers and
unwonted activity." small vessels, whose functions are not to fight battle. ships, but to protect commerce."
GERMANY, NOT FRANCE, ENGLAND'S RIVAL.
Many maritime powers forget, however, that “seaBEFORE AND AFTER THE NAVAL DEFENSE ACT.
power does not rest primarily upon the possession of Lord Hamilton then proceeds to make tabulated a strong navy, but upon the possession and the maincomparison at three periods. “ In March 1889, before tenance of a superior maritime trade. A navy does the Naval Defense Act was introduced,
not make trade. .. Spain had at one time the had of effective battleships 32, of 262,340 tonnage,
best trade of the two hemispheres. When she lost against 23 French and Russian ships of 150,653 ton her naval supremacy she also lost her trade. The
many of our ships were old. In Netherlands inherited Spain's business, but preserved April 1894, at the end of the Naval Defense act, ...
it only so long as the Netherlands navy was equal to the five years' work ending in 1894 , . shows in the task of its guardianship. .. battleships alone an addition of 14 ships, 179,300 tons “ If, to imagine an illustration, a naval war were to the British fleet, against 13 ships, 120,300 tons to
to break out between France and Great Britain, and the fle ts of France and Russia
Our ships if the latter were to experience a decisive and crushare more modern and have relatively a greater con ing defeat at sea, she would lose her trade. But, in centration of offensive and defensive power than the the existing circumstances, it would certainly not ships added to the other navies."
pass under the control of France. There is no doubt These figures do not include " England's present whatever that Germany, which is already the second effective armored and first-class cruisers," which commercial power, would immediately become the number 29 against a Franco-Russian total of 17.
first." Thus, as the case of the three greatest naval pow
Unfortunately France remains “blind to the fact ers of Europe now stands, " although England may that the vacated place would be occupied by Gerfairly claim to be equal in strength to her two most many. She persists in believing that she could take formidable competitors, no one can pretend that the
it. And this is because she will not accept Captain margin of her superiority is such that she can afford Mahan's law of sea-power.” to rest on her oars."
WHAT EUROPE HAS A RIGHT TO DEMAND. FRANCE AND RUSSIA BUILDING FIVE TIMES AS MUCH “Great Britain pretends to the supremacy of the AS ENGLAND IS.
sea, and Europe is, upon the whole, resigned to her Comparing next “ the prospective building pro enjoyment of it. But
Europe has a right gramme of the three countries on January 1, 1894, as to demand that so long as Great Britain continues to now known. France and Russia will have on January put forward her claims, she shall support them so 1, 1894, no less than 23 large ships, with an aggregate determinedly and with such a convincing display of tonnage of 210,300 tons, in various stages of construc her ability to maintain them as to accustom her en
vious neighbors to the idea that in a quarrel with her they are foredoomed to defeat. Upon no other terms is her presence in the Mediterranean either tolerable or defensible. • Her sea-power has ceased to be convincing, undoubted, recognized ; to-morrow it could be shattered, perhaps immediately, by France alone, if only France had no other preoccupations and if she were assured beforehand of Italy's non-interference. For the citadel of British sea-power, the vantage-point upon which rests the centre of the British position in Europe is in the Mediterranean; and, excluded from the Mediterranean, the United Kingdom would in a few years be no weightier a factor in international politics than the Netherlands or Denmark.”
“Nauticus” shows by comparative tables British naval inferiority to France in the Mediterranean, and concludes that England's “present policy of pretension and powerlessness in the Mediterranean is perhaps the most formidable of existing menaces to the peace of the world.”
WHAT UNMUZZLED THE RHETORICIANS. The result was deeds, not words ; the conquest of the English Liberal Alliance and the restoration of belief in Ireland as a nation. But “the fatal trouble was that the new 'union of hearts' and the old contempt for English opinion could not be brought under the same blanket.
This release from the tension of discipline unmuzzled the rhetoriciansand in a very short time the Irish Nationalist party had gravitated to pretty much the level of the other Irish parties that had gone before.”
Messrs. Dillon and O'Brien are selected as initiators of this “reversion to type.” When Parnell fell, and they were in jail, “ the practical men,” the men of the “latent common sense in the country,” “ held the national ship off the rocks,” and got the Nationalist party into capital fighting trim. With the release of the two prisoners began “ the triumph of the rhetoricians within the party organization. There is no member of this majority who has to his credit a single clause of effective legislation. Collectively they have done nothing but talk and write during their dozen years of public life. The old taint of selfseeking has reappeared. There are charges of corruption already in the air, and it will be a matter for surprise if, during the lifetime of the present Parliament, a formal rupture does not take place."
CAMEOS IN EPIGRAM. Then we are presented with a series of what purport to be photographs in epigram of the Irish lead
· Exaggeration is said to be an Irish failing ; with Mr. O'Brien it is a disease.” At first “he im. pressed his associates as a modest man and a good fellow.” Then " he blossomed forth suddenly as the most tremendous egotist of anybody's acquaintance" who is yet sincerely conscious of his own utter unpretentiousness. Mr. Dillon “is a narrow man, selfcentred to a remarkable degree, and with an extremely small stock of ideas."
Of Michael Davitt we are told : “Where other men carry written the lessons gained in human contact, and acquired knowledge of their fellows, he has a blank space. He does not get on smoothly with others; he picks his co-workers badly; he gets jealous of the wrong people, and is perpetually looking for figs among the thistle spikes.
“Mr. Edward Blake, who was imported from Canada, will go back again some time at the spontaneous suggestion of an entire Irish party. ... It was hardly worth while to go so far at this late day for an inferior imitation of Butt."
Mr. T. P. O'Connor's plans and ambitions “ do not bear any appreciable relation to Ireland whatever :" “ This self-constituted Directory, having gathered into its hands the reins once held in Parnell's vicelike grasp, discloses no disposition to drive anywhere. Its sole discoverable idea is to stop still and make speeches from the box seat.”
Nevertheless “X.” declares "the defeat of the practical men” to be “inore apparent than real.''
IS RHETORIC WRECKING IRELAND ?
gives us this month his second pessimistic picture of “the Ireland of to-day.” He entitles it “The Rhetoricians of Ireland." It is drawn with caustic vigor. " There is,” he says, common-sense in Ireland, but it almost never gets a chance.” It is mostly checked and choked by that “disastrous specialtythe visitation of oratory."
“ The rhetoricians of Ireland eat one another up at such a pace that a decade suffices for a generation.... Each succeeding group rises, talks itself into ascendency, and culminates either in securing office or in being broken by prison and exile, or on the wheel of public disfavor. Sundry general rules are observable, too, in the alternations. A given series of silver-tongued place-hunters will by reaction produce a crop of violent reformers.
It is a story of talk, practically nothing but talk."
THE CHANGE UNDER PARNELL. In this light the chief Irish movements of the last hundred and twenty years are reviewed; “From Flood to Isaac Butt the controlling idea behind every representative Irish voice had been to produce an effect upon England and the English. Sometimes the design was to cozen or seduce, again to awe and terrify. Now the thought was to curry immediate favor, now to create a dazzling impression of wit and eloquence, now to build up that solid sort of repute which suggests a judgeship."
Biggar and Parnell introduced a new era. They imbued their " young bloods” with the “ spirit of scorn for English applause and of distrust for English assent." “ It is, perhaps, the highest proof of Parnell's power that for six years he was able to keep this big rhetorical force under tolerable control.” “The discipline was a rigorous and exacting one."
able information for the many people interested in the In recent numbers of the Revue des Deux Mondes
HOW FRANCE GOT GOOD ROADS.
THE ITALIANS OF TO-DAY.
As Sketched by a French Artist.
M. Réné Bazin has published three interesting improvement of country roads in the United States. articles on “The Italians of To-day.” They are very France, as is well known, has one of the best systems of eloquently written ; but so many fine descriptions of roads in the world. In that country the roads are di Rome and the Campagna exist in literature that the vided into three classes, the national roads, built and
practical details of architecture and husbandry conmaintained by the government, and the department tained in its pages are best worth specifying. roads, built and maintained by the departments, and
ROME. vicinal roads. Besides the villages have a number of small roads or streets leading to their most impor
Rome is in reality quite a small town, and during tant points. Most of the national roads were built by
the last twenty years it has been struggling in the the government for general use previous to the rail. grip of an alien civilization. Its population has nearly roads, when freight was hauled from city to city by
doubled since 1870 ; for it had then 226,000 inhabithorse power and public hacks were all the luxury a
itants, and now can boast of nearly 400,000. Out of traveler could enjoy. The roads of France are not,
four people walking in a Roman street barely half are it would appear, the result of a slow, progressive
Romans. And to house this surplus of strangers the process. Mr. Lagron tells us that about fifty years
old city has been pierced as by dividing knives, an atago France was in as bad a condition as we are at
tempt being made to construct new streets on a regupresent.
lar plan, of which the chief example is the long handWHAT CAN BE DONE HERE.
some Via Nazionale, which possesses undeniable
beauty, but might just as well be a thoroughfare in Considering the question “How can we do some Turin or Milan. Baron Haussmann was in Rome thing similar here,” Mr. Lagron says: “ The most
when the Italians became masters of the city, and the serious objection I have heard against such a ques
trace of his transforming hands is still plainly to be tion is that the citizens of the United States are too
The fever of speculation which seized upon the proud to surrender their rights. Each town and
Roman nobles and made them play into the hands of township having charge of the roads will not let the
building firms, and the devastating ruin which fell State infringe upon their privileges. I do not pretend
upon the spiders as well as upon the flies, has become to dictate to our legislatures what they ought to do,
matter of history. Old travelers who remember the but it is evident from our experience of the past that Rome of their youth wail over the desecration, and say a power must be created to order and build roads ; in
that a unique result of ages has been destroyed for the other words, there must be a centralization or there
creation of a handsome town like any other town; will be no unity of action.
that the new houses are blindingly white or unpleas“With unity of action we will have uniformity of antly yellow, and the pity of it is that innumerable work. Some localities have good road-making ma- buildings are left unfinished, the openings walled up terials; some have not. Some towns will be so situ
with boards and sometimes literally inhabited by ated as to have but a small mileage of roads to squatters. In some instances fine frescoes adorn the build, where others will have more than their share.
walls of half-built buildings, but the dire fate of comThe centralization will balance the expenses more mercial failure fell upon the masters and men, and a evenly, and whatever assessments are made, special washerwoman may be seen carrying her pile of linen taxation to property owners should be but a small
up the unfinished stairs. M. Bazin tells us that the fraction, county and State paying the rest.
army of 50,000 workmen, contractors, artisans and “My opinion is that when the proper authority has
speculators put to flight by the crisis are gone, and decided that a road should be built between two
there is no sign of their return. points, passing through one or more other points, a careful survey ought to be made somewhat like for a
THE CAMPAGNA. railroad, looking for the straightest line with the best Leaving Rome, which must ever possess the Coligrade and cheapest location. Of course it would be seum and the Vatican, the seven Basilicas, the rushing policy not to injure farms unless for a real benefit to fountains of the past, and whose new streets must be the road. Then when the survey should be approved, endured with resignation, M. Bazin bids us take our a law should be passed to order it built, the right of stand with him on the steps of St. John Lateran and way secured or condemned, the assessments made look across the Campagna. The Agro, or vast land upon the State, the counties and the property owners surrounding Rome on every side, is full of tormenting in a certain district through which the road should questions and the subject of most contradictory statepass. Then let competent engineers take charge of ments. Enterprising husbandmen of all ranks try the construction according to approved specifica their hands on it, but it is full of fever, and in the tions.
old Roman literature we find lamentations over the “ By no means should the vigilance of the central malaria which might have been written yesterday, power stop here. The question of maintenance is of and amidst the ruins of ancient suburban houses of vital importance and should not be neglected.” the larger sort are votive stones to the great goddess
TEN years' residence
among the Matabeles enable
Fever. What the Popes did, what the Italian govern innocent of meat or wine ; breakfast being composed ment has done or tried to do, and the story of the of pepper-pods dipped in oil and eaten with black immense emigration of Italians to foreign countries, bread. notably to South America, leaving this great and al Whether modern Italy can ever be brought successmost uncultivated desert at their very gates, is told fully into the ways and methods of the nineteenth very powerfully and picturesquely by M. Bazin. century remains to be seen. The transition from the While the rural Italians are leaving their native land, mediæval to the modern world has been too sudden, the mountaineers of the Abruzzi are being brought the country has not developed from within, all sodown in hordes to work on the great estates. These called improvements having been imported from withpoor people receive the smallest pay; they are con out, and as yet alien to the genius of the Italian tracted for as if they were all but slaves. M. Bazin's people. As is but natural from his point of view, the article is full of feelings of picturesque description. author of the article looks forward to a day, when, Rome enthroned in its Campagna is the most striking discarding the Triple Alliance, Italy will awake to a and poetical place in the world; but there appears to better tradition, and seek both prosperity and safety be a spell upon all attempts to make it a satisfactory by entering into amicable relations with France. home for modern civilization. Crops there are, and herds of cattle, and men and beasts compose endless unsought pictures ; but the genius of the people and
MATABELE MANNERS. place seems to refuse assimilation, and the tide of life EN beats up against those ancient ramparts and is worsted the of in the struggle.
London Missionary Society station in their land, to NAPLES.
furnish to the Sunday at Home a very interesting M. Réné Bazin's concluding article on
series of papers on Matabele customs and beliefs. On Italians of To-day" deals with the South of Italy, and
Lobengula and his government, Mr. Carnegie thus opens with a piteous picture of Naples. The older pronounces : “He is their god, who rules by fear, portions of the town, those inhabited by the poorer
overrides justice, kills the innocent, plunders his part of the population, were always narrow and
peaceful neighbors' cattle; is, in fact, as far as it suits squalid, and the piercing of new streets has much
his cunning heathen craftiness, the same sort of a
monster as his father was. Round this heathen impaired their condition. As so often happens, the
monarch and his counselors cling tenaciously superartificial creation of a workman's quarter has not answered ; the new flats are taken by the better class of
stition, witchcraft, and caste, which are other names artisans, and the world of small dealers, sellers of
for what we term the government of the country, fruit, fish and macaroni, and the hand-to-mouth
which really is no government worthy of the name, classes driving small trades, or living on beggary,
but a patched-up combination of heathen laws and cannot move into a distant quarter of the city with
customs, of self-conceitedness, pride, and arrogance out dislocating their precarious industries. When the
and ignorance, upheld by fear and terror, guarded by cholera seizes on the older streets of Naples it carries jealousy and revenge, and the frequent sacrifice of off a thousand victims daily, and M. Bazin leaves on
LOBENGULA'S TITLES. the mind of the reader an impression that nothing effectual is being done in the way of remedy.
Thus far the missionary. The Matabele lavish on M. Bazin gives a terrible picture of the condition of Lo Ben among other laudatory titles these : “The the Neapolitan poor, who actually see day by day Heavens, The Spearer of the Heavens, Rain-maker, great palace-like houses erected, not so much in the Great Father, Great Mother, Great King, Great place of, but absolutely above the miserable hovels Black King, King of Kings, King of Heaven and which represent to them home. In many cases whole Earth.
At the dance they often call him by families are turned out at a moment's warning when the titles of Rain, The Full River, Mighty Gushing the edifice above them is advancing near completion. Sounding Water, The God of Rain, Rain-maker, and
other such high-flowing phrases. Many think THE DESERTED GARDEN OF EUROPE.
that by some strange process or other the sun dies every The country districts of South Italy are in an even evening, and a new one is born every morning. This worse plight, and nothing is left for the peasants to do opinion is more general in regard to the moon. They but emigrate to the South American States ; more
believe that the chief creates the new moon every than eighty thousand men went in one twelve months, month, and on their first seeing it they thank the yet M. Bazin observes that in Calabria he looked out king. from the train on more than three hundred kilometres The war dance alluded to takes place every year in of lonely uncultivated districts. As for the country January and February : “ This is held at Buluwayo, populations at Reggio, where bergamot scent is dis where people from every town in the land congregate, tilled, the workmen go to bed at five in the afternoon, dressed up in all their finery, which includes black rise at ten, and work all the night through, and until and spotted calico, pink and black beads, twisted three the next afternoon. For these fifteen hours' round their legs, necks and arms; skins-monkey, hard work in the scent factories they are paid the tiger cat, jennette, buck, sheep; old coats, shirts, hats sum of one shilling a day. Their food is naturally and patches of rags of every description. It is the
annual gala fair to which they coine to thank and partly round this inner yard are the huts of the praise the chief for sending the rain."
queens and their slaves. Just hard by the wagon
house is the cattle kraal ; and beyond it the large “NO WORK, NO FOOD."
open inclosure some thousand yards in diameter, With all their savagery the Matebele are civilized round which are built the huts of the town of Buluenough to impose the labor test on every rank: “Lazy
wayo." persons who will not help in sowing or reaping are driven from town to town. No work, no food is the
A PLAGUE OF RABBITS. motto for them. The queens themselves dig their N the December Lippincott's Mr. J. A. Ingram gardens, and everybody who can must help to prepare gives some startling statistics of the plague which for the dry season."
came upon the Australian settlers through their inadUnfortunately, industry does not destroy mendic vertence in introducing bunny to their far away Eastity: “From the queens and head indunas, down to ern continent. Three pairs of rabbits were brought by the meanest slave, men and women, and boys and an enterprising settler and deposited upon the 2,900,girls, all of them are persistent beggars. Their
000 square miles of Austrailia. They were naturally reason for having this begging propensity so largely for some time regarded as curiosities, but having developed is · Because,' they say, we white people multiplied exceedingly, to the manifest delight and were created in the long ago—long before them, fatness of the wild dogs and various other carnivora, which accounts for us having so many good things they finally exceeded the capacity of these predatory and they so few.'”
animals, and began to be noticed in unpleasant numA RICH LAND.
bers among the gardens of the settlers, who were Mr. Carnegie speaks highly of the resources of the
themselves becoming more and more numerous. land : “ The soil is very well suited for all kinds of
“As the bunnies continued to increase the havoc European seeds. You may have two crops a year,
on the crops became greater and the destruction in
orchards and gardens more general. The colonists and good ones too, provided you attend to your land
became frantic with their grievance. They called as you ought to do. You need never be without green vegetables all the year round; fruit trees grow luxu
a public meeting to consider the matter. After much
argument, it was decided that either the rabbits or riantly, grapes and oranges and bananas flourish
the colonists would have to leave. A crusade was abundantly. The land is rich with deep soil, the valleys are well watered, and fountains bubble up every
organized against the intruders. Volunteers were where. Irrigation can be made easy; hundreds and
enlisted and companies organized. The forces moved thousands of cattle, sheep, and bucks graze here, and
in mass on the animals. The rabbits noved in mass
elsewhere. Their migration did not improve the many more would but for the primitive mode of rearing live stock... No doubt coffee, tea and cocoa
condition of adjacent districts, nor advance the welwould also grow if they were planted ; and the settler
fare of the neighboring settlers. The reception of may reckon on fir, spruce, larch, and other kinds of
the rabbits was neither cordial nor pleasant. Hostrees thriving as well.”
tilities were declared in advance, and extermination
began on their arrival. THE KING'S PALACE.
A GREAT ARMY OF BUNNIES. In a similar article in the Leisure Hour Mr. Car “On account of dangerous conditions and hostile negie gives this picture of the royal residence: “ There surroundings, the rabbits formed resolutions of conis a dwelling house of red brick at Buluwayo, with federation, and banded themselves into herds for three apartments in it, in which are kept tobacco, general security and private protection. The herds mats, skins, picks, corn, beer, calabashes and various doubled and quadrupled within a few months. As other articles. One or two pictures grace the walls, their moving hosts grew they covered the plains like the plaster of which, when I was last there, had the locusts of Egypt, and swarmed along the borders partly fallen off, and which can scarcely be discerned like sands on the sea-shore. The great armies of on account of dust and cobwebs. Her Majesty the bunnies finally numbered millions and tens of Queen's picture is there among others. Rats and millions. They moved over the settlements in such bats, not to mention other live creatures, ants, masses as to devastate the farms, deplete the fields, beetles and such like, abound in every part of the and lay waste whole districts. The grass on the house. The original fire place is discarded, and an plains was eaten up and the pasturage destroyed ; the other one, in the form of an old broken clay pot track of the devastating hosts was left as barren as a placed in the middle of the floor, is used instead. desert. No sprig of grass was seen or blade of herb
* Outside in the veranda are tusks of ivory, rhi age left. The cattle were driven away into other noceros' heads, lions' skins, tigers' skins, a box or two. provinces, or starved on naked plains. The flocks an old chair and some native-made baskets. Just died or were removed from the pathway of the dealongside is another brick building in which are vouring plague. The grazing interests were no less stored clothing, calicoes, beads, shawls, guns, powder injured than the agricultural. and other lumber. A brick wagon house, recently The people found themselves powerless to cope built in place of an old pole one, is on the sun up with their raiding adversaries. Their forces were inside of the large building, while at the back, and adequate to the war. The increase of the rabbits