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AY we ask the reader | carnage about them - carnage, and the pestilential
to a wretchedness, first truest dignity being the truest love for his fellow. And contrived by wrong, and perpetuated by folly. We then hope and a faith in human progress contemplate the will show him the embryo mischief that, in due season, pageant, its real ghastliness disguised by outward glare shall be born in the completeness of its terror, and shall and frippery, and know the day will come when the symbe christened with sounding name, Folly and Wicked-bols of war will be as the sacred beasts of old Egyptness standing sponsors.
things to mark the barbarism of by-gone war; melanWe are in St. James's Park. The royal standard of choly records of the past perversity of human nature. England burns in the summer air—the queen is in Lon- We can imagine the deep-chested laughter—the look don. We pass the palace, and in a few paces are in of scorn that would annihilate, and then the small comBirdcage Walk. There, reader, is the miserable show passion—of the Man of War, at this, the dream of folly, we promised you. There are some fifty recruits, drilled or the wanderings of an inflamed brain. Yet, oh man , by a sergeant to do homicide cleanly, handsomely. In of war ! at this very moment are you shrinking, withBirdcage Walk, Glory sits upon her eggs, and hatches ering, like an aged giant. The fingers of Opinion have eagles !
been busy at your plumes—you are not the feathered How very beautiful is the sky above us! What a thing you were ; and then that little tube, the gooseblessing comes with the fresh, quick air! The trees quill, has sent its silent shots into your huge anatomy; drawing their green beauty from the earth, quicken our and the corroding Ink, even whilst you look at it and thoughts of the bounteousness of this teeming world. think it shines so brightly, is eating with a tooth of rust Here, in this nook, this patch, where we yet feel the into your sword. vibrations of surrounding London—even here, nature, That a man should kill a man, and rejoice in the deed constant in her beauty, blooms and smiles, uplifting the —nay gather glory from it—is the act of the wild aniheart of man, if the heart be his to own her.
mal. The force of muscle and dexterity of limb, which Now look aside, and contemplate God's image with make the wild man a conqueror, are deemed in savage a musket. Your bosom still expanding with gratitude life man's highest attributes. The creature, whom in to nature, for the blessings she has heaped about you, the pride of our Christianity we call heathen and spiritbehold the crowning glory of God's work managed like ually desolate, has some personal feeling in the strifea machine, to slay the image of God - to stain the he kills his enemy, and then, making an oven of hot teeming earth with homicidal blood to fill the air stones, bakes his dead body, and for crowning satisfacwith howling anguish! Is not yonder row of clowns tion, eats it. His enemy becomes a part of him: his a melancholy sight? Yet are they the sucklings of glory is turned to nutriment; and he is content. What Glory — the baby mighty ones of a future Gazette. barbarism! Field-marshals sicken at the horror; nay, Reason beholds them with a deep pity. Imagination troopers shudder at the tale, like a fine lady at a magnifies them into fiends of wickedness. There is toad.
In what, then, consists the prime evil? In the mur- hireling of the Sword? Hodge, poor fellow, enlists. der, or the meal? Which is the most hideous deed—to He wants work; or he is idle, dissolute. Kept, by the kill a man, or to cook and eat the man when killed ? injustice of the world, as ignorant as th 3 farin-yard
But softly, there is no murder in the case. The craft swine, he is the better instrument for the world's craft. of a man has made a splendid ceremony of homicide- His ear is tickled with the fife and drum; or he is has invested it with dignity. He slaughters with flags drunk; or the sergeant—the lying valet of glory-tells a flying, drums beating, trumpets braying. He kills ac- good tale, and already Hodge is a warrior in the rough. cording to method, and has worldly honors for his grim In a fortnight's time you may see hinı at Chatham ; or, handiwork. He does not, like the unchristian savage, indeed, he was one of those we marked in Birdcage carry away with him mortal trophies from the skulls of Walk. Day by day, the sergeant works at the block his enemies. No; the alchemy or magic of authority ploughman, and chipping and chipping, at length carves turns his well-won scalps into epaulets, or hangs them in out a true, handsome soldier of the line.- What knew stars and crosses at his button-hole; and then, the battle Hodge of the responsibility of man? What dreains had over—the dead not eaten, but carefully buried—and the he of the self-accountability of the human spirit? He has maimed and mangled howling and blaspheming in hos- become the lackey of carnage, the liveried footman, at a pitals—the meek Christian warrior marches to church, few pence per day of fire and blood. The musket-stock and reverently folding his sweet and spotless hands, which for many an hour he hugs—hugs in sulks and sings Te Deum. Angels waft his fervent thanks to God, weariness—was no more a party to its present use, than to whose footstool—on his own faith—he has so lately was Hodge. That piece of walnut is the fragment of a sent his shuddering thousands. And this spirit of des- tree which might have given shade and fruit for another truction working within him is canonized by the craft century; homely rustic people gathering under it. Now, and ignorance of men, and worshipped as glory! it is the instrument of wrong and violence ; the working
And this religion of the sword—this dazzling heathen- tool of slaughter. Tree and man, are not their destinies ism, that makes a pomp of wickedness—seizes and dis- as one? tracts us, even on the threshold of life. Swords and And is Hodge alone of benighted mind? Is he alone drums are our baby playthings; the types of violence deficient of that knowledge of moral right and wrong and destruction are made the pretty pastime of our which really and truly crowns the man, king of himself childhood; and as we grow older, the outward magnifi- When he surrenders up his nature, a mere machine with cence of the ogre Glory—his trappings and his trumpets, human pulses, to do the bidding of war, has he taken his privileges, and the songs that are shouted in his counsel with his own reflection—does he know the praise ensnare the bigger baby to his sacrifice. Hence, limit of the sacrifice ? He has taken the shilling, and he slaughter becomes an exalted profession; the marked, knows the facings of his uniform. distinguished employment of what; in the jargon of the When the born and bred gentleman, to keep to coined world, is called a gentleman.
and current terms, pays down his thousand pounds or But for this craft operating upon this ignorance, who so, for his commission, what incites to the purchase? It -in the name of outraged God—would become the may be the elegant idleness of the calling; it may be the bullion and glitter of the regimentals; or, devout wor- f tends his wounds, that brings even a cup of water to his shipper, it may be an unquenchable thirst for glory. burning lips. Granted. But is there not heroism of a From the moment that his name stars the Gazette, what grander mould ?--The heroism of forbearance? Is does he become? The bond-servant of war. Instantly not the humanity that refuses to strike, a nobler virtue he ceases to be a judge between moral right and moral than the late pity born of violence? Pretty is it to see injury. It is his duty not to think, but to obey. He the victor with salve and lint kneeling at his bloody has given up, surrendered to another, the freedom of his trophy—a maimed and agonized fellow-man,—but surely soul: he has dethroned the majesty of his own will. it liad been better to withhold the blow, than to have He must be active in wrong, and see not the injustice; been first mischievous, to be afterwards humane. shed blood for craft and usurpation, calling bloodshed That nations, professing a belief in Christ, should valor. He may be made, by the iniquity of those who couple glory with war, is monstrous blasphemy. Their use him, the burglar and the brigand; but glory calls faith, their professing faith, is—“love one another:" him pretty names for his prowess, and the wicked weak- their practice is to—cut throats; and more, to bribe and ness of the world shouts and acknowledges them. And hoodwink men to the wickedness, the trade of blood is is this the true condition of reasonable mian? Is it by magnified into a virtue. We pray against battle, and such means that he best vindicates the greatness of his glorify the deeds of death. We say, beautiful are the inission here? Is he, when he most gives up the free ways of peace, and then cocker ourselves upon our permotions of his own soul—is he then most glorious ? fect doings in the art of man-slaying. Let us then
A few months ago, chance showed us a band of ruffi- cease to pay the sacrifice of admiration to the demonans, who, as it afterwards appeared, were intent upon War; let us not acknowledge him as a mighty and mamost desperate mischief. They spread themselves over jestic principle, but, at the very best, a grim and melanthe country, attacking, robbing, murdering all who fell choly necessity. into their hands. Men, women, and children, all suffer- But there always has been—there always will be, war. ed alike. Nor were the villains satistied with this. In It is inevitable; it is a part of the condition of human sotheir wanton ruthlesness, they set fire to cottages, and ciety. Man has always made glory to himself from the tore up and destroyed plantations. Every footpace of destruction of his fellow, and so it will continue. It their march was marked with blood and desolation. may be very pitiable; would it were otherwise! But so
Who are these wretches ?—you ask. What place did it is, and there is no helping it. they ravage? Were they not caught, and punished ? Happily, we are slowly killing this destructive fallacy.
They were a part of the army of Africa; valorous A long breathing-time of peace has been fatal to the Frenchmen, bound for Algiers, to cut Arab throats; dread magnificence of glory. Science and philosophyand in the name of glory, and for the everlasting honor porera e nuda filosofia !—have made good their claims, of France, to burn, pillage, and despoil; and all for na- inducing man to believe that he may vindicate the divintional honor-all for glory?
ity of his nature otherwise than by perpetrating destrucBut Glory cannot dazzle Truth. Does it not at times tion. He begins to think there is a better glory in the appear no other than a highwayman, with a pistol at a communication of triumphs of mind, than in the clash nation's breast? A burglar, with a crow-bar, entering a of steel and roar of artillery. At the present moment, a kingdom. Alas! in this world, there is no Old Bailey society, embracing men of distant nations—"natural for nations. Otherwise, where would have been the enemies," as the old, wicked cant of the old patriotism crowned heads that divided Poland ? Those felon mon- had it—is at work, plucking the plumes from Glory, unarchs, anointed to-steal? It is true the historian claps bracing his armor, and divesting the ogre of all that the cut-purse conqueror in the dock, and he is tried by dazzled foolish and unthinking men, showing the rascal the jury of posterity. He is past the verdict, yet is not in his natural hideousness, in all his base deformity. its damnatory voice lost upon generations. For thus is Some, too, are calculating the cost of Glory's table: the world taught-albeit slowly taught_true glory; some showing what an appetite the demon has, devourwhen that which passed for virtue is truly tested to be ing at a meal the substance of ten thousand sons of indusvile; when the hero is hauled from the car, and fixed try-yea, eating up the wealth of kingdoms. And thus, for ever in the pillory.
by degrees, are men beginning to look upon this god, But war brings forth the heroism of the soul: war Glory, as more than a finely-trapped Sawney tests the magnanimity of man. Sweet is the humanity Bean,-a monster and a destroyer--a nuisance; a noisy that spares a fallen foe; gracious the compassion that I lie.
TO STAND GODFATHER.
THERE are everywhere social customs which may be in the whole circle who would exclaim, with Candide's regarded as so many snares laid for the incautious metaphysical pedagogue, that all is for the best in this inhabitant or the ignorant foreigner; but no country best of worlds. At length it struck Madame Poupart is so rich in this respect as la belle France. Having that you are a true child of fortune—a thoroughly been lately the victim of one of these traditional) lucky man.” — I acknowledged the compliment by traps, I will describe it here, in order to warn others bowing in silence.—“Yes, you—a bachelor, without against it.
cares or anxieties of any kind, enjoying good health and Being a bachelor of a certain age, I occupied a snug a fine independence-you stand in the very sunshine little apartment on the third floor of a nice house or of fortune; and, therefore, I ask you, in my own hótel, as the concierge used to call it, in the Faubourg name and that of my wife, to stand godfather to our St. Honoré. The first floor, a very splendid suite of child." rooms, was occupied by M. and Madame de Poupart, an At first I declined politely, thinking the request a litinteresting young couple, whose acquaintance I had the tle curious; but M. de Poupart called it a trifle—although honor of making through a common female friend, he should feel much obliged; and there is always someMadame de Grandville. Having once or twice dined at thing so touching even in maternal weakness and supertheir table, madame was thereupon kind enough to stition, that I assented at last. As Roman Catholics bestow on me the agreeable title of an ami de la maison ; are accustomed to baptize their children as soon as posand I was at the time rather proud of this circum-sible, the ceremony was fixed for the next day but one, stance, little thinking how much the distinction would and was to take place at the venerable church of St. cost me.
Roch. There was no time to be lost; and, being thoOne evening, I was comfortably seated in my fauteuil roughly ignorant of French manners and usages, I à la Voltaire, perusing one of those papers which are applied the next morning to Madame de Grandville, and read with as little attention as they are written by the begged her to tell me what I was to do. She was exceedjournalists themselves, and which Lamartine has ingly kind; assured me that the invitation was a token of described as cet écho du matin que le soir on oublie, when high consideration on the part of M. and Madame de the bell rang at my door. On opening, I recognized Poupart, and said there was nothing at all to do but to my first-floor neighbor, the amiable M. de Poupart; and make a few trifling presents. Besides, I was to enjoy after the usual salutations, the following conversation the good-fortune of having one of the most elegant and took place between us :
beautiful young ladies of Paris—that is to say, her own “Excuse me, sir,” said M. de Poupart, "for inter- dear niece—as partner in the ceremony, for she was to rupting yon at so late an hour; and an apology is, the stand godmother. The obliging lady immediately wrote more necessary, because I am about to commit an indis- a memorandum of what was wanted, addressed to cretion."
the director of La Belle Jardinière, a very fashionable "I am glad to hear it,” said I; “ for I was afraid at establishment of nouveautés, as the Parisians call first some misfortune might have happened to madame." it
. She would look after the rest herself. I returned “Oh, no, thank you; she is as well as can be expected thanks, took the billet, and drove hastily to the elegant in her situation; for I have come to say, that since the shop. afternoon I have had the good-fortune to become the A very engaging demoiselle de boutique (at home we father of a most beautiful baby—a chubby, rosy little call her a shop-woman) read the letter, and shewed me fellow."
at once a charming godchild's basket. It was lovely “I am glad to hear it: pray accept for both madame indeed, but it cost £4. Nothing else would do, said and you my best congratulations and most sincere good the pretty demoiselle, and so I took it. Then she herwishes."
self chose a beautiful-box, the perfume of which was “A thousand thanks,” said my obliging neighbor; exquisite, and filled it gracefully with two dozen pairs " and in connection with that happy event, I have just of fine gloves, two fans-one a precious antique, and something very trifling to ask of you. My good wife, the other an artistic modern one---several phials of as you must be aware, is a little inclined to superstition, essences, and a necklace of Turkish pearls. She and the convent-education she received has not done handed me at the same time a handsome bill-written much towards lessening that disposition. You may on glazed paper, adorned with an engraving in goldimagine with what anxiety she pondered over the future and the different items amounting to £17. I did destinies of our expected first-born, and touching them not dare to raise an objection, as this pretty box was she consulted a famous somnambulist, who predicted destined for my elegant partner, and I took, relucthat the baby would be very fortunate if it had a happy tantly, I must confess, twenty-one napoleons out of my godfather. We have been on the look-out ever since purse. among our friends and acquaintances for the most pros- I thought this was behaving pretty well, and went perous. But this is difficult: one has too many children; triumphantly to Madame de Grandville, who did not another none at all; a third has a cross wife; a fourth look absolutely delighted. bas speculated in the funds : in short, there is not one “The box,” she remarked, “ though not at all rich, is handsome, and I hope your fair lady will receive it with presents had been thankfully received by the young pleasure. But
here are the beautiful little presents mother, the nurse, and the nursery-maid, and my good I have bought for you to give the accouchée : fifty francs taste was much applauded. In the church, a new worth of bonbons and sweets of the best description, to series began. Before the child was christened, I had fill the basket and divide among the guests; a bronze to give a wax-taper to the curé, an offering to the night-lamp by Cain, and a silver bowl engraved by vicaire, pour-boires to the sexton, the cloristers, the Froment-Meurice—the two for twenty louis : you could suisse, the sacristan, the door-keeper, the giver of holynot offer less to a lady of fifty thousand francs a year; water; besides alms for the poor of the parish, the for the nurse, a cap of real lace, five louis—a mere wants of the church, the missions, the convents, &c. I nothing; for the nursery-maid, this French shawl—that thought it would never come to an end. At last the is enough for her. I should have liked to buy something baby was duly received into the Christian community, besides for the baby, but we must do things as simply as and we went away, the suisse preceding us with great possible."
pomp, and striking his cane against the pavement of the I stood amazed. It cost me more than £100, that holy building in a masterly way. I hung my head, for Madame de Poupart had consulted a somnambulist, and my purse was empty; and, besides, I had the mortificathought me a lucky fellow. And, besides, there lay tion to see that another name than mine was entered in before me a frightful series of étrennes, to be given the parish-register, because I did not belong to the every year to my blessed godchild. But what could I Catholic persuasion, and to hear that my godchild did do? The pill was bitter indeed, but I was obliged to not even bear my name: for who in France would conswallow it with the best grace I could. I had pledged sent to have a son called Peter ? Désiré-Eugène is my word, and fallen into the snare.
much prettier and more modern. The happy day arrived, and in the morning I received So I had spent about 120 guineas for a compliment a beautiful bouquet from Madame de Grandville's ele- from Madame de Poupart, a courtesy from the nurse, gant niece. I thought it ugly, for it cost too much. I a nosegay from the godmother, and a flourish from a had the honor of fetching the blooming lady in a car- suisse with a cocked-hat. I found these rather expenriage, and we drove to the church; the godmother hav- sive honors, and declared inwardly, like the poor raven ing put my necklace of Turkish pearls round her fair in La Fontaine's fable, Mais un peu tard, qu'on ne m'y neck, and I holding her flowers in my hand. My costly prendrait plus.
TOO SHREWD BY HALF;
OR, CONCEIT AND ITS CONSEQUENCES.
A FRENCH INCIDENT.
Several years since, two young men stopped at the which you are seeking, will be infallibly granted on his inn at Montaign, waiting for the coach that was to take recommendation. Come, then, and try to meet his them on to Fontenay. One of them, who was dressed approbation. He is a man of quiet, simple habits, who in a blouse of unbleached linen, had hanging from a never assumes authority except when he wishes to concrossed shoulder belt a gourd encased in wicker-work, and fer a benefit or to redress a wrong. He is coming to our a tin box, adapted for holding botanical specimens, while in house in order to enjoy a few days' relaxation. My hushis hand he carried a geological hammer. His open coun- band did not forget to put in a good word for you in tenance beamed with health and good humor, while that his last letter; but M. Vernon replied that he must see of his companion was bilious and anxious looking. The you and judge for himself. Your success, therefore, will latter wore an elegant travelling costume; but a pair of entirely depend on the impression you make on him, large blue spectacles concealed his eyes, and by no means and I hope it will be a favorable one. tended to improve the expression of his face. He had just
"Your affectionate cousin, opened a letter, and was preparing to read it for his friend.
« « LUCY LECLERC “Is it from your cousin, Colonel Leclerc ?” asked the latter. “From his wife. I will read it for you.
"You see, my dear Naquet," continued the embryo
official, as he folded the letter, " that I have every reason "MY DEAR FRANCIS—As soon as you receive this to hope for success." letter, set out to come to us. The new prefect of La “ Certainly," answered the young naturalist;" it seems Vendée is to pass a few days here. You know, of course, to be highly probable that M. Vernon will obtain your that his name is Vernon, that he is brother to the minis- nomination.” ter of justice, and that the place of attorney-general, “You say that very coldly, André."