Page images

THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING HOUSEHOLD. as now great enough to take leadership in the movement of real THE MOVEMENT FOR ARBITRATION.

civilisation. Without doubt real civilisation is not destructive A DEPUTATION waited upon Lord Salisbury last month,

but peaceful rivalry in making the practice of that civilisation

more consistent with its theory. for the purpose of presenting him with a Memorial signed

What effect this memorable conference will have immediately by between 3,000 and 4,000 official representatives of upon the practical politics of the two countries cannot be trade unions and other working class associations, in guessed. But the work of the conference is not done. It favour of an arbitration treaty between England and the created standing committees of twenty-five representative men, Cnited States. This Memorial was signed last year ready to take such action in regard to arbitration as may be before the Venezuelan dispute came into existence. Lord needed from time to time, and meanwhile to stimulate and Salisbury's reply was cordial and most sympathetic, as is

consolidate public opinion. The day is near, in general usual with him. The other Memorial, which was pro

enlightenment, when war cannot be made without the consent moted by the Conference held at Sion College, is still to

of the people, and they are daily learning how little inbe presented. It has been signed by over 60,000 per

dividually they gain by a destructive war, which has to be sons, including among others some 235 Members of Par

terminated, after all its loss and agony, by concessions and by

treaty. Perhaps the main advantage of this conference is in liament, and will be presented when a convenient occa the diffusion of an opinion as to the folly of war as a common sion arises.

method of settling differences, and the settlement of the public THE WASHINGTON CONFERENCE.

mind into a habit, in which it rests, of going to law rather than Meanwhile, on the other side of the Atlantic, Republi going to war. cans and Democrats alike agree in the advocacy of a

AMERICAN PILGRIMS—AND GUNNERS. spirited foreign policy; but it is not likely that the The presence in this country of two representative friends of peace and of arbitration will be again caught parties, one representing the Pilgrim Fathers, who came napping in America. The editor of Harper's Magazine for over to visit the scene associated with their ancestors, the July publishes the following editorial concerning the arbi other the Boston Artillery Company, which was received tration conference held at Washington in April last: by the Prince of Wales, and permitted the unprecedented

The Arbitration Conference held in Washington in April privilege of marching through the streets as an armed last was notable among all moveinents of this kind for force, have tended to bring the foremost representatives promoting good-will among nations in that it was widely of the two nations into friendly union. The negotiations representative in its composition, and entirely practical in its

about Venezuela hang fire, but considerable impatience is aims. Its members, who were enrolled as delegates, were, in

expressed on both sides of the Atlantic as to the delays in fact, chosen by a sort of natural selection from forty-six States and Territories, and fairly represented the enlightened

diplomacy. The recent arrest of a British official by the public opinion of the United States. On the roll, and taking

Venezuelans in the debatable land should serve as a active part in the proceedings, were statesmen, diplomatists,

reminder to quicken the somewhat sluggish action of our eminent judges, lawyers of distinction, presidents, and pro Foreign Office. fessors of colleges and universities, clergymen of great influenceand national reputation, men of affairs and basiness who control large industrial operations. Hundreds who were unable

ANGLO-AMERICAN UNITY. to attend, but who responded by cordial endorsement of the

A Poet's VISION. aims of the conference, are recognised as makers and representatives of public sentiment in their various localities.

Thomas BAILEY ALDRICH contributes to the Century

for July the following noble lines “On reading William OFFICIAL SYMPATHY. The movement had the warm sympathy of men high in

Watson's Sonnets, entitled, 'The Purple East”” : official life, who refrained from active participation mainly

Restless the Northern Bear amid his snows because they have later on the responsibility of action, and it

Crouched by the Neva; menacing is France, was deemed best that the conference should be wholly popular

That sees the shadow of the Uhlan's lance in character, and not be embarrassed by any political pre

On her clipt borders; struggling in the throes dilections. Of all the gatherings in this country for a inoral

Of wanton war lies Spain, and death ward goes. purpose, this assembly was less disturbed than any I have

And thou, O England, how the time's mischance sen by personal “ crankiness” or by eccentricity of speech.

Hath fettered thee, that with averted glance The business was kept well in hand, and not allowed to run

Thou standest, marble to Armenia's woes! into visionary projects. The audiences were notable for

If 't was thy haughty Daughter of the West character and weight of influence, and the discussions and

That stayed thy hand, a word had driven away addresses reached often a high level of eloquence, but were

Her sudden ire, and brought her to thy breast? uniformly directed to an attainable end. This end was the Thy blood makes quick her pulses, and some day, discovery of a means by which the two great English-speak

Not now, yet some day, at thy soft behest ing peoples can continue at peace and in the advancement of

She at thy side shall hold the world at bay. the civilisation of the world. The only difference of opinion This is a pleasant message to reach the old country on developed in the discourses was as to the necessity of increasing the 120th Anniversary of the Declaration of American the navy and improving the coast defences of the United Independence. If poets have more than presidents to States; but the opinion of the conference, expressed in its do with voicing the people's heart, we may look forward unanimously passed resolutions, was confined strictly to the

to something better than "splendid isolation.” Be the question of international arbitration. Even in this it did not attempt to formulate a plan, or in any way to usurp the

promise repeated in the soul of every English-speaking functions of the Government, but to formulate public opinion

person as he thinks of the giant republic and turns his as a support to official action.

eyes to the home-land :

She at thy side shall hold the world at bay.
It was a thoroughly American assembly, not for peace at any
price any more than for war at any price-an assembly proud

The African Review has recently published a very of the republic and conscious of its high mission, with no

useful map of Rhodesia, showing the gold-fields, the scene purpose of lowering its spirit of sovereignty or its pride of of the various disturbances, etc. It is on a large scale, nationality, but rather to assert the power of the United States and mounted on linen, with rollers, for the wall.


BY SIR LEPEL GRIFFIN. In the Nineteenth Century for July the first place is devoted to an article on the future of Persia. Sir Lepel holds strong views on the subject. He is very ferocious in his condemnation of those who, believing that Persia is moribund, suggest that we cannot do better than agree to partition the country with Russia. Such a policy he declares would be in the last degree discreditable to England. The partition of Persia would be a crime rivalling that of the partition of Poland, which may be so, but there is a great deal to be said in favour of the partition of Poland, and states which cannot govern themselves all go one road.

IF RUSSIA SEIZED TEHERAN? Sir Lepel thinks that the position of England in Persia is better now than it has ever been, nor does he by any means agree with those who maintain that Russia could annex Persia whenever she chose. He says:

It is obvious that if Russia were to move her armies into Persia she could occupy Teheran and the northern provinces without serious opposition. The Persian army, as we experienced in 1857, is neither numerous, well armed nor disciplined, and England would certainly not send troops so far from their base. But there are many considerations which make it unlikely that Russia will take such a step. In the first place it would probably entail war with England, who could command the Gulf, the more important trade routes and the southern provinces. So far as Russia is concerned, having full command of the Caspian and an excellent road from Resht to the capital, such an occupation would be of little benefit to her trade and would be more costly than it was worth ; while her road to the open sea would be more effectually blocked than ever. In the second place, the industrial development of Persia, which, in spite of many difficulties and opposition from corrupt officials and fanatical priests, has made great progress during the last few years, has raised a moral barrier against Russian ambition.

Our true policy, he maintains, is to hold our own, and improve our position by carrying out the enterprise to which the Imperial Bank is already committed. He says :

England, whose name, whatever her enemies may say, stands as a synonym for honour and good faith throughout the East, will refuse to accept the counsels of filibusters, and will honestly endeavour to promote the prosperity of Persia.

SUPPORT THE PRIME MINISTERHe believes in the Grand Vizier, of whom he speaks as follows:

The Prime Minister, Mirza Ali Asghar Khan, is well known to European statesmen, as he accompanied the Shah during his tour in 1889. He is now about forty years of age, and is a man of great resource, courage, and ability. He has maintained his position by the force of his high personal qualities, and is favourably regarded by all the foreign Legations at Teheran. He is sincerely anxious for the peaceful development of Persia, and has given constant support to all serious enterprises which he believed would further that object.

increasing, imperatively demands the road, and seeing that it is froin the south that English and Indian goods (nter Persia, it was unfortunate that its construction was commenced from the Teheran instead of the Ahwaz terminus, where every mile of road would have been at once remunerative. When the scheme is placed before the public it must propose to commence from the south, working gradually northwards to the rich districts of Hamadán and Isfahán, and the road should at first be of simple character, without expensive works and bridges, to facilitate and develop the local traffie. As commerce increases it may be gradually improved into an excellent cart road. Sir Henry Drummond Wolff, when Minister at Teheran, was very anxious to see this work carried out, without which the trade of Persia will inevitably travel by the new German and Russian roads, and the loss to British commerce will be incalculable.

One of the last things which the late Shah did before his assassination was to extend the concession for making the road for ten years. Seeing that the Persian Government had bound itself to Russia to make no railroads until 1900, we probably cannot do better than push forward the construction of a road which four years hence could be used as the basis of a light railway.

“THE APOTHEOSIS OF RUSSIA.” Taat is how Blackwood describes the present international situation. The political articles in this month's magazine are divided between a vehement horror of Liberal Obstruction at home, and of Russian ascendency abroad. Opposition in Parliament has become simply Obstruction. It was the Obstruction of the Liberals which killed the Education Bill, and therefore Mr. Balfour must renounce all scruples about using the Closure as resolutely and systematically as Obstruction is used. But the strength of traditional Toryism comes out most fully in the Russophobia of the concluding political survey. “Peace or war, Russian aggression never stands still." « There is no end to Russian ambition." Russian extension is due to “nothing, after all, but the genuine earth-hunger, the lust of unlimited dominion."

THE ARBITER OF THE WORLD." “Russia has been hungering and thirsting for the whole earth ever since Russia was.

All the sheaves are coming home together. If it is a port that is wanted, Russia has now the choice of half a dozen. If it is territory, there are several desirable emp'res waiting to le carved up. If it is universal hegemony, it is hers. Russia is the arbiter of the world. The Powers that are collectively in league against her are individually as desperately anxious for their tin mug as are her direct dependants and allies. Such as have most reason to dread her, and as command the force which might throw her back, are silent and bewildered. From one end of the world to the other she has established a kind of divine right. . . . And, however the advocates of an Anglo-Russian understanding may delude themselves or others in London, there is no delusion in St. Petersburg. “Hostility to England is the alphabet of Russian policy,” says the forward school.

IN ABYSSINIA. į This dominance of Russia began with the French alliance. She pushed it further on the strength of AngloGerman estrangement over South Africa. She drew to Germany, and put the screw on Italy. She nearly broke up the Triple Alliance. But here she received a check. Possibly the Kaiser shrank from joining France and Russia, and urged Italy against Russian influence to hold to her African policy. Italy asked and received from England the counter-movement on Kassala. “ The Triple Alliance, in short, was set on its legs again by Lord


The chief duty which we neglect, according to Sir Lepel Griffin, is the completion of the road which leads from the southern port to the capital :

England must not omit to construct, as speedily as possible, the trunk road from the southern ports to Teheran, the concession for which is still with the Imperial Bank, and the extension of which for a further term of ten years was one of the last official acts of the late Shah. The Bank fas already spent a large sum of money on the northern section of this road. But British commerce with Persia, which is large and



Salisbury.” Nevertheless Russia has found in Abyssinia ADVICE TO WOULD-BE GAMBLERS OF THE a thumbscrew to twist on Italy and also on English

STOCK EXCHANGE. supremacy in Egypt.

Don't. BY A. J. Wilson.

MR. A. J. Wilson devotes the first article in the Turkey, which can understand gunpowder or bribery, Investors' Review for July to a disquisition on “ The Fever has oaly had nagging from England, but has been bought of Speculation and its Risks.” He has had his inningsup by Russia. “One of her first purchases ” was Ghazi good man. From the time of the Baring crash down Osman, the hero of Plevna.

to the end of 1894 the public mind was oppressed with a It is perhaps excusable that Sir Philip Currie, new to his sense of coming tribulation, and the gamblers in stocks place and conditions, should have underrated, as he did, the and shares lay low. But now speculation has revived, astuteness of M. de Nelidoff, but it was not the less and Mr. Wilson sees that it has by no means reached its unfortunat”. “I can do what I like with that man," he is full development. "Extravagant although prices appear reported to have said of the prince of diplomatists ; after in every department, yet there is room for them to go which the man naturally did what he liked with Sir Philip. higher. For anything the Money Market indicates to the How completely Great Britain was befooled we did not know

coni rary, we might see many a home Railway Stock till the Blue-books made a clean breast of the dismal muddle.

brought to pay less than two per cent. before twelve As a consequence,

months are over, and greedy rushes after many a flimsy the centuries of Russo-Turkish struggle are over, and Con mining share far surpassing what was witnessed last stantinople wants only the reconsecration of St. Sophia to be summer.” So Mr. Wilson sits himself by the wayside Russian in name as well as in fact.

and croons his old song as to the terrible dangers that

are lying in wait for us—just round the corner. Imagine Teheran is held by troops called Cossacks and officered what would happen in the City of London if a real crisis ly Russiars. Russians dictate Persian policy. Northern were to break out, such as would be produced by the downPursia is to be delared Russian when Russia wills. The fall of the Turk. Before summer is over, Crete and Macedeath of the late Shah happened conveniently for Russia, donia may have compelled the reluctant Western Powers as the new Shah is young, weak, pro-Russian. China to intervene. too “has found her asylum in Russia's hospitable bozom." Russia holds every card in Pekin. In spite of The more successful we are in the Soudan, the more Japau's victories, Russia wields what is practically a our dangers will increase in imminence. India is not protectorate over Korea.

contented, hunger and famine are devouring the vitals So vast is the inheritance into which Nicholas II. has of its millions, and Russia is creeping to our borders to entered. If his direct and recognised power is tremendous give discontent courag.. Troubles seem brewing in almost beyond human comprehension, how much more Persia. The situation in Afghanistan is very unstable. tremendous is his unacknowledged supremacy over all the

War is destined to break out again between China and peoples that encircle his frontiers ! It needs only a word from him to call up convulsions that may change the face of

Japan, possibly between Russia and Japan, and in that

war Mr. Wilson thinks we must be prepared to take part, the earth. A BELLICOSE “PACIFIC” POLICY.

or see our commerce in that region destroyed. The

Venezuela question is not settled. If war breaks out The direction of change is probably towards China and

between Britain and the United States, Canada would be the Far East. The world, which has been Mediterranean,

bankrupt in a moment, and the delicate fabric of banking then Atlantic, is now entering on its Pacific phase. And Russia has an eye to the command of the Pacific:

in England would be smashed to pieces. If the United

States side with the Cubans we might not only lose money The truth is that Great Britain and Russia are too big ever invested in the Island, but might have to take sides with to agree for any time. We believe that to our race will fall

Spain, France and Germany are hotbeds of revolution. the ultimate supremacy of the world ; Russia believes exactly the saine of herself. Sooner or later the two ambitions must

Austro-Hungary would go to pieces with the death of collide, and we had better be making ready for that great day

Francis Joseph. The Italian Government is hopelessly at once. To allow Russia to absorb all possible strength before

bankrupt. So Mr. Wilson sings his melancholy song, the conflict is to put a premium on defeat and ruin.

finishing up as follows: “Speculate, gamble if you will, What, then, do we want? We want above all a new Eastern but remember that the wealth the gambling seems to policy and a definite one-such a policy as is pigeon-holed in produce would disappear like gunpowder in a fire at the the bureaux of St. Petersburg. We have cast China overboard ; sound of the first cannon-shot discharged in a war we might ballast the ship with Japan.

between two great European Powers. How many British But we must be prepared to fight for her. In short, banks, we wonder, would stand the strain for six weeks we should make it the single-minded aim of our policy to

of a war between us and the United States. So let the strip the young Emperor of his gorgeous vassals and add them prudent man, if any such remains alive in these times, to the retinue of the Queen. Which cannot be done except gamble with caution and sometimes think of the morrow.” by plain dealing and plain speaking, and the manifest resolution to follow words with blows. Otherwise there may be those alive to-day who will see the grandson of Nicholas II.

In the Bookman for July, the New York publisher saluted in the Kremlin by the Emperor of China and the

Mr. Dodd, holds out little hope of the clause in the tributary Princes of Rajputana and the Deccan.

Copyright Law being repealed which requires the copy

righted books to be set up in the United States, the fear APART from the profuse fiction, the most important being that efforts in that direction might rouse the features in Temple Bar for July are Augustus Manston's enemies of tho law, and lead to its repeal. sketch of Verlaine, the man and his mind, a lady's story English writers are now more popular in the States than of her stay in a Mediterranean convent, and a sketch of American, and deplores the dearth of native talent. Renan's sister. Charles Fisher interestingly compares the The new writer, whose portrait appears this month, is three elegies,-Milton's " Lycidas,” Shelley's “ Adonais," Miss Jane Findlater, author of “The Green Graves of and Matthew Arnold's “ Thyrsis.”


He says


John Bright's SUGGESTION REVIVED. An anonymous writer in the Contemporary Review for July, seeing that the case of Home Rule is not prospering particularly at present, suggests that the Unionists could not do better than propose to adopt Mr. Bright's suggestive alternative slightly altered. It may be remembered that, when confronted with the Home Rule Bill, Mr. Bright did not merely content himself with denouncing Mr. Gladstone's Bill, but he maintained that the true way out of the difficulty was to send all Irish legislation into an Irish Committee.

He suggested that Irish legislation might be brought into harmony with Irish needs and Irish opinion by the simple expedient of passing all Bills through a Committee of the House of Commons composed exclusively of Irish members. There would be no separate Parliament.

His scheme met with scant favour at the time, and it would certainly not be regarded as a final statement of the question by the Home Rulers to-day; but the writer of the article in the Contemporary thinks that it may be accepted in default of anything better if it were slightly amended. For instance, he says:

It is not enough to hand over the settlement of Irish Bills to the Irish members if those members do not truly and faithfully represent the views and desires of the Irish electors. Herein lies the weakness of Mr. Bright's plan. It does not touch the fundamental difficulty-namely, of working representative government under conditions suitable to England, but far from suitable to the circumstances of Ireland.

To meet the difficulty thus pointed out, the admirers of Mr. Bright's plan are not without a suggestion. It has been said, for example, that the Irish members might meet in Dublin to consider Irish Bills, and that if this were done, the burden of attendance in Westminster might be reduced to small dimensions. Irish members would naturally be expected to attend in Westminster during the stage of third readings of Irish Bills, but that business might be disposed of in & week or a fortnight, and after that, most of them might leave. The Irish elector would readily forgive a lax attention on Imperial business in which he takes no great interest if his member was diligent in attending to Irish business in Dublin. This suggestion, although it goes beyond Mr. Bright's speech, does not raise any question of principle, but is rather a matter of detail.

That the sitting of the Irish members at the different scasons of the year from the Parliamentary session would gratify Irish national sentiment is no drawback to the more prosaic utilitarian benefits to be gained. Whether even with this additional concession Mr. Bright's plans should be thought worthy of a trial by the Irish members is a question to which they and they alone can give an answer. If the subject should be brought before them in a practical way, it may safely be said they will not come to a decision without very serious and impartial consideration.

The writer in the Contemporary is somewhat sanguine. He believes that there would be no great objection taken to the scheme by ministers. What is wanted, therefore, is some one to take the initiative. He says:

The situation is one where the enterprise of a private member, in securing a Tuesday or Friday evening, might precipitate a solution of the problem. During the present session no opportunity is likely to arise ; but a small band of members might secure an evening early in the next session. Every section of the House, if the vote could be taken by ballot, would probably show a favourable result; but each section has its own elements of pride and prejudice to overcomo. The student of political science will regret if the opportunity shoul: for ever pass away of trying an experiment charged with so many elements of hopefulness.

JOHN MORLEY IN PARLIAMENT. THE Woman at Ilome publishes an article adorned with half-a-dozen portraits of Mr. John Morley. There is not very much that is new in the article, but the following passages may be quoted :

Of Mr. Morley's success there is no doubt. Not only did he acquire strength as a debater, and not only did his platform speeches powerfully impress the electorate, but by his wide political knowledge, his high character and the honesty of his convictions, he attained an influence in the House of Commons equilled by only a few experienced statesmen. His intimacy with Mr. Gladstone grew into a touching friendship. Whoever faltered on the Home Rule path—and there were several who looked wistfully back-these two went steadily and undoubtingly forward. In the six years of Unionist Administration which followed Mr. Morley's brief " intoxication" of office, they frequently took counsel together, keeping alive in each other the flame of Hoine Rule, and fiercely attacking Mr. Balfour's policy of “ thorough”; and when Mr. Gladstone returned to power for the last time, it was on Mr. Morley that he chiefly relied.

Mr. Morley may seldom feel“ chc remorse of the bookman impeded by affairs”; yet the habits of the study are tenacious. He is scarcely agile or nimble enough for debate. Nor does he possess the instincts of the Parliamentary tactician. Probably he never spent five consecutive minutes in the lobby. When passing through that paradise of idlers and intriguers, he looks with terror at the journalists, and replies merely by a salutation of the eyebrows to the friend who mutely solicits a chat. He declines to regard the House of Commons as a place of recreation. To listen and think and contribute to the “ veracity” of a debate—that is his conception of Parliamentiry duty.

In capacity to comprehend the modes of the House of Commons, Mr. Morley is far behind Mr. Henly and Mr. Labouchere; and his want of touch with the average member reacts upon his speeches. As a platform orator he is superior to Mr. Balfour, but he is greatly his inferior as a Parliamentary debater. Only on rare occasions does he escape a certain literary fastidiousness and self-consciousness. On various occasions he has been questioned by electors as to his religious disbelief. He rejects what he calls the popular belief of the day. At the same time, he admits that men and women cannot be happy without religion. It is easy to accept his assurance that he has never been guilty of an irreverent phrase, and it is known that in more than one country-house he has joined in family worship, and taken part in the singing of hymns. His sincerity is beyond question. He seeks truth, in Pascal's phrase, with many sighs, and some day he may get beyond Goethe's psalm of life. Meantime his confession of faith may be summed up in the words put by Shakespeare into the mouth of Corin: “I earn that I eat, get that I wear; owe no man hate, envy no man's happiness, glad of other men's good, content with my harm.”

THE Country House for June discusses the need of improved rural hostelries for lady cyclists, who do not relish apparently the present village inn. The country house sketched and pictured is Dunrobin Castle, the ducal seat of Sutherland, and the country gentleman is Earl Spencer.

“The great defect to-day," says Sir J. E. Millais in an interview in the June Strand, which is beautifully illustrated with reproductions of his pictures, “is the want of reverence. Until a young man can admire, nay, until he can give homage, there is no hope for him.” Stating his views of art education, the President observed, " I do not believe much in direct instruction. Surround a boy with great art and he will learn.” The best education of his life had, he said, leen gainel by associating with great men, especially painters and men of letters. He thinks art education is looking up.

MENELIK AND HIS EMPIRE. KiNG MENELIK, the victor of Adowa, forms the subject of a readable article in the Revue de Paris. The Emperor of Abyssinia has proved himself a formidable foe, and his French biographer, M. Maindron, describes him in pleasing colours as a great sovereign worthy of respect both when his character and his conduct are considered.

Menelik as crowned Emperor of Ethiopia on 4th November, 1889. He succeeded Johannes, who was killed when fighting the Dervishes in the March of the same year. In the last seven years he may be said to have really built up his empire, for at the time of his accession even his right to the throne was disputed. It is quite a mistake, says the French historian, to regard Abyssinia or Ethiopia as & savage and uncivilised country. The empire is made up of small kingdoms; the major portion of the population profess the Christian religion, and accept as divine their feudal Constitution, which strongly resembles that which obtained in Europe <luring the Middle Ages. The average Abyssinian is a farmer rather than a merchant. He is courageous, just, and strong-minded, sober, enduring, and possessed of all those qualities which make a good soldier.

A SON OF SOLOMON. King Menelik claims to be descended from a son of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, and he has shown not a little of the wisdom attributed to his illustrious ancestor. Under his rule Abyssinia bids fair to become a powerful and well-ordered nation, governed, as we have said before, on a strictly feudal system. With but few exceptions all the great estates are held directly from the crown, and the owners give in exchange for their land each year so many men or goods in kind.

Money transactions are rare, and the law of exchange reigus supreme. Every province is governed by a “Ras' -chief, or prince-and the affairs of cach small town or village are administered by a kind of council of old men. Every yard of land pays a tax to the State, and this tax not unfrequently takes the form of military service. The representative of the Government is also local magistrate, and, on the whole, justice is very fairly administered; there is in each case a right of appeal to the governor of the province. Till the accession of King Menelik many of the Abyssinian laws condemned evil-doers to terrible forms of punishment. A murderer was given over to the relations of his victim in order that they might themselves kill him. The present Emperor has modified some of these mediæval laws. Each trial is conducted with the greatest solemnity, and when a professional advocate or barrister cannot be found, a number of amateur defenders are always ready to take his place.


The army which routed the Italians is largely composed of volunteers recruited from among the peasantry. In addition to everything being found-clothing, living, and travelling expenses-each soldier is given a small regular pay. The regiments are not lodged in barracks, but a certain number of men are billeted on each village, the expenses of their keep being considered in the local taxation. The whole army, including regulars, volunteers, and militia, counts something like half a million of men. The militia are only called out when there is pressing need; they possess no regular arms, but will answer the roll-call bearing old guns, swords, and the national weapon, a javelin. They are very redoubtable at close quarters, and are said to make the finest charges of any army in the world. The Abyssinian soldier possesses

singular powers of endurance. For whole months together he will live on a few handfuls of flour and dried peas, and ten thousand Abyssinians will exist for a whole year on food that would disable the same number of Europeans in three months.

HIS CHURCH. The Church and clerical party play a very important part in Abyssinia, but it must be admitted that the individual ecclesiastics are ignorant and illiterate. Fortunately for their prestige their parishioners are extremely superstitious and apathetic where religious matters are in question. Their head Bishop, the “ Abouna," is the guardian of Abyssinian orthodoxy. In the fourth century Athanasius sent his Apostle Frumentius to evangelise Abyssinia, and he besought him always to choose his Bishop at Alexandria. This strange order has been faithfully observed, and thus it has come to pass that the “Abouna” is always a stranger to his flock, and is generally chosen from out of some Egyptian monastery, being sent to Ethiopia before he has even had time to learn the language of the country where he is to spiritually reign. It should, however, be added that he has as coadjutor the “ Etcheguieh," a Bishop who has the advantage of being himself an Abyssinian, and whose power is more or less absolute over the great world of convents and monasteries with which the country is studded.

HIS USE OF EUROPEANS. Abyssinia possesses a strong provincial aristocracy, which has remained more or less independent of the Emperor, but Menelik has known how to bind together these varying elements, and his military successes have greatly consolidated his position.

The Emperor of Abyssinia is not only the chief military commander, but also the chief magistrate and chief financier of his empire. Curiously enough all the money used in Abyssinia is minted either in Austria or in Italy, France supplying the Abyssinian Post Office with its stamps. Menelik is singularly liberal and temperate in his religious views, and has always respected liberty of conscience. Abyssinia must be a happy hunting ground for missionaries, for the Emperor considers them precursors of civilisation, and so encourages their presence in his kingdom. When he is not engaged in a royal progress Menelik inhabits a beautiful palace near his capital of Entotto. “Adissababa” is the Windsor of Abyssinia, and there dwell the royal family and the court. Menelik has two daughters, married to the two chief provincial governors. His heir is his grandson, a lad of twelve, rejoicing in the name of Wassen Segged.

The prospect of the women electors of the State of Colorado voting in the next election of President for the United States, leads Mrs. Woodhull Martin in the July Humanitarian to recall her baffled struggle of 1870-71 to vote and to stand for the Presidency. She grounded her case on the wording of section 1 in Article XIV. of the Constitution, which declares, “ All persons born or naturalised in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside ;” and on the 15th Amendment, which runs, " The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, colour, or previous condition of servitude." Her argument is that women are already entitled to the franchise under these terms.

« PreviousContinue »