Графични страници
PDF файл

and gaze at the speaker who deals famil- gation in Paris and that in America iarly with such unknown quantities, and when the tension of our wondering gaze professes even to "love" the Space which relaxes, what utterance is possible to the is one of his divinities. How does a man beholder but that tremulous laugh which feel, we wonder, when he loves Space ? is the only alternative of weeping, over Is the emotion stupendous as its object? the prelections of this gentle enthusiast, In the nature of things it must be, we this amiable fanatic ? A laugh is a sorry should suppose, a chilly sort of passion, performance as commentary in such a matnot making a very great demand upon the ter; but there is only one other alternafeelings.

tive which could express the puzzled beWe are half inclined to laugh, but wilderment and painful wonder which rise rather more than half inclined to a very in our minds; and indeed even tears do different exercise when we turn from the not render so well the pity and amusebelief thus propounded to the person who ment, the sympathy and impatience, the sets it forth, with all that gentle reitera- admiration we feel for the loyal disciple, tion which belongs to the preacher, and the sense of provoked vexation and anan apparent warmth of pious sentiment noyance with which we look upon the such as must be peculiar to the man. wasted man. Many wonderful phenomena has the con- We cannot venture in our limited space junction of atheism and faith produced in to quote much more largely from the the world ; for indeed an unbelieving head curious book, which, however is but little and a credulous heart are often enough likely, we should suppose, to meet with conjoined, and the marriage has produced many readers. The mixture of home abortions of strange delusion enough to mission details with the grandeur of this astonish the most experienced observer : philosophical religion, is still more odd but very seldom, we think, has any one here than it generally is when mixed up ventured to stand up before a world, still with genuine feeling and serious thought. in its senses, and propound so extraor- Some of these contrasts, indeed, are too dinary a faith, so piously, so fervently, so comical to be passed without notice. In simply, as Mr. Congreve has done. He one of these discourses, for instance, we has the first qualification of a preacher - are taught what is the office of the Priestthe art of believing what he himself says, hood (when formed) in the Religion of and believing it with earnest force and Humanity, how wide are their claims, and conviction. These words sound much how lofty is the position they aspire to. too real when we think what are the ob- Such claims Mr. Congreve tells us — and jects of his faith ; and yet, so far as he is with truth - no Christian priest would concerned, they are evidently true. No venture to put forth ; and wisely - for if lukewarm zeal shines through the dis- he did, no community would ever allow course, but a real warmth, which increases them. But the Priesthood of Humanity still more the amazement with which we will take higher ground than is possible gaze at the man. However woful and to that of Christendom. Here is the wonderful his creed may be, he believes statement of their claims :it by some extraordinary witchcraft. He talks to us of Humanity and Space as a I begin by restating what I have often man might talk of God and Christ, with stated before — my conviction that for the full moisture in his eyes and a certain expan- meeting of the difficulties, for the satisfactory sion and glow of being, as if the words

Jaccomplishment of the work of education in inspired him. Strange fact ! — but true.

all its complexity, there is no other power but

religion to which we can profitably appeal ; Almost we wish, for Mr. Congreve's sake, I that for the instruction of this and other that we could respect his belief more, and

nations, we must rely on a religious or. feel his abnegation of all reasonableness ganization, – on the organization, that is, of •more justifiable. If he were a Moham- a body of men animated by the same remedan, or a Buddhist, or a born Brah-ligious convictions, undertaking the task min, it is with a kind of reverence that in the same spirit as a religious duty, and we should contemplate the believer so making its performance the ground of their profoundlacertain of his faith and eager whole existence and action — the justificaprofoundly certain of his faith and eager whole to extend its sway. But after we have

ition of their being an organization. In

other words, none but a Priesthood can be heard him hold forth for pages together

qualified to instruct - none but a Priesthood about Humanity and Space, about the can duly guide society to the right conception Founder and his memory, about the of education, to the right conception of its duties of the new-born tiny sect, and their more peculiar organ - the family, and of its fellowship of the saints with the congre-I own action in subordination to that organ. Then arises the question, Is there such a body? | dition of all benevolent enterprises? We There exist Priesthoods around us of more or turn the page, and we find stated in all less power and cohesion. But there is not simplicity the modest boundary of the which would claim to answer to the descrip-new Rel

new Religion's hopes. tion given. ... The new Priesthood of Hu-l manity now in the slow process of formation Those who recognize the insufficiency of enters then on ground not previously occupied, other educational schemes, the incompetence when it claims for itself the province of higher of other clergies, ... to all such I appeal for instruction as its peculiar work, its raison aid in forwarding the formation of the new d'être — the great primary object of its ex- Priesthood. I cannot say how urgent I think istence and action, that on which all its other this question, how important is a steady uninfunctions are seen to rest. It is as yet, as I termittent effort to base on a solid foundation said, but in the process of formation ; it needs the fund for the Priesthood of the human long and vigorous efforts from all the servants faith. ... Immediately this only concerns of Humanity to aid it in its constitution; but one, but that one is of the highest importance. whilst recognizing these facts, we who, by the To form a fund sufficient, both in amount and force of circumstances and the exigencies of certainty, to dispense with the great pressure our position, are, however imperfectly, mem- upon our director's energies, that is the most bers of this nascent organization, must not immediate object we can set before us. I may shrink from claiming for it that which is to be do what he would not do, urge this on all its appropriate province. It, and it alone, if Positivists, and, indeed, on all who sympathize worthy of its place, can instruct the children with us from outside. of Humanity with the complete instruction which they need for the purposes of their

Alas for the world and its chance of

A being. It is enough that others serve another renovation ! alas for the children of Hupower, and cannot therefore be consequent manity whom only the Priesthood of Hoservants of Humanity. They might, and they manity can fully instruct! There is but will, to a great extent, and most usefully, give one priest in question, one man whom the same knowledge, but they cannot give it all Positivists are entreated to unite in with the same logical consistency as we do. making a provision for, so that he may They may help us, but we finally supersede devote all his energies to the new-born them.

Church. From the sublime to the ridicuThe reader will perceive that no pope,

| lous is but a step. Surely the members no mediæval priest, ever made a vaster

of the young community, were they half claim, or set up a more infallible right.

as much in earnest as Mr. Congreve, When what is technically called an “ Ap

would soon find means of liberating M. peal” is made for the Home Mission, for

Lafitte, the spiritual director of their the favourite parochial scheme of evan. sect, the head of their religion, so to gelization, or for the missionary to the spe

the speak, from the temporal work which diheathen, conventionally so called, it is of vides his thoughts with the care of his ordinary usage to give a wide and vague

flock. If it is true, according to the vul. description of the blessings to be secured gar idea, that liberality in offerings is the by the special “ work " for which the sym- best sign of warm partisanship and pathies of a Christian people are appealed / strong conviction, then we fear Positir. to; but few, even of the most fervent, ven

ism, after all, must have a weaker claim ture to say “this agency, and this alone,

upon its votaries than is to be desired. can instruct” the ignorant. We, and we

In the same discourse, a page further on, alone, are the men who can save our race.

the preacher makes another most modest This, however, Mr. Congreve says with sug

th: suggestion, too gentle to be called an ap. out hesitation : to him it is tout simple. / peal, which still further exposes the unOf all the complicated subjects in the

fortunate contrast between the splendid world, this one of education is the most pretension

pretensions of the new sect, and the difficult; but he is provided with the ma- means it possesses of carrying them out. chinery which can solve all difficulties, i Secondly, I think we should keep before us the organization which has the final the question of acquiring some room or power in its hands. What is the appeal rooms where lectures might be given, where he makes after this grand introduction ? even more elementary teaching might be girea Has he a Priesthood ready to enter upon ?

Odpready to enter upon lif wanted - a Positive school or institute, as its work ; has he a band of eager disci- ||

it might be called. This is a point which ples ready, if only the means are fur- only ber of them not to lose sight of it, but to

already has struck some of our body. I can nished, to set the new world in the right nished, to set the new world in the night see how far and where it is realizable. . . . It way at once ; has he an Apostolate at remains essential for us in any case to see least, wanting only that “penny siller” whether we can provide ourselves with a local which is nowadays the indispensable con- habitation - a seat of Positivism.

Was there ever a more modest, more ment which it sets before it as one of its great touching suggestion of a want? What ! ends. None can enter the room and give the one room only, one poor room ! to make most passing attention to that series of busts a home for a great philosophy, a univer- without being struck with the historical charsal religion ? We do not know how the

he acter which attaches to our religion. They

should be, and will be, a valuable impression * rcader may feel, but we confess that our

for all, and the Positivist cause is much infirst impulse was to reply promptly

debted to those who have placed them there. Yes, certainly, you amiable soul! you shall have a room, and that at once. We cannot conclude more fitly than Poor though we are, (and where is the with this gratifying announcement. The critic wlio is not poor?) we can ret man- Room (it is surely worth a capital) is sitage to make this little sacrifice, nay, even uated in Chapel Street, Bedford Row, to buy a plaster bust or two to adorn the No. 19. There Mr. Congreve preaches same and make you happy. We put on on Sunday mornings, taking “the practirecord the instinctive response of our cal and religious side of the subjects," heart, in which we have no doubt the and Mr. Beesly on Sunday evenings tak. reader will sympathize, for our own satis-ing “the historical side.” There all men faction, and because perhaps it may who will may be informed by the collecplease Mr. Congreve to hear of it. Buttion of busts and the pictures, which no we have great pleasure in informing the doubt has been added to by this time; public that the sacrifice which we were there we may learn how to say a litany to so genially disposed to make has not been Humanity, and pray to that great Benecessary, but that the Positivist body ing, and contemplate, in and through itself has proved equal to the task im- Humanity, the august figure of M. Comte. posed upon it, and that the Room has There, too, we may be taught how to been attained. Here is our mild Apostle's love Space, and to understand the reown account of so gratifying a fact :- sponsive passion of that highly compreIn England, during the past year, we have

hensible entity. Furthermore, if you

wish it, dear reader, you may there be made a great advance. When, on the last anniversary of this festival, I mentioned cer

initiated into the dates and naines of the tain objects as desirable, I had little expecta- new religion, and date your letter Moses tion that we should, by the next anniversary, 19th, instead of January 19th, Aristotle have got so far towards their attainment. We instead of March, Dante instead of July, have been now for nine months in possession Gutemberg instead of September; and of this room, and the gain to our cause has so forth. The first day of Moses in the been, and will be, undoubtedly great. It gives | 86th year of the blessed French Revoluus a centre of action, a place to which those tion. 'for instance, would be the date in who wish to hear more of our teaching may the Calendar at No. 10 Chapel Street, come, as well as a rallying-point for ourselves;

Bedford Row, for what we called the ist of and it gives us, moreover, what is on all grounds so valuable to us, a sense of perma.

January 1874 in profane parlance. Think nence. It gives us the unity of place in of that, all who aspire to superiority and exchange for the unpleasant but necessary singularity! To be sure, in the present changes to which we were previously driven. rudimentary state of the community, this It enables our associations to fix themselves, system of dates is troublesome, since the and to gain the strength which fixity gives. old-world, effete Christian date must still It is in the highest degree calculated to pro- be added to insure comprehension ; but mote our sense of order. There is good in the natural course of events the old reason, I think, to hope that it will give am

must displace the new, and this unsatisvery strong impulse to our progress. Nor is it the mere room we have, but in the collec

factory state of affairs will no doubt come tion of the busts of the calendar which orna. Ito an end. ment our walls, together with the pictures which, as the room becomes drier, may be * We feel too much attached to Mr. Congreve to added in increasing numbers, we see not criticise bis grammar or his mode of expressing himmerely with gratitude the liberality of our

self; but it troubles our limited intelligence to know

how a series of busts can be "a valuable impression." members, but the evidence of that worship of We admit, however, that after our effort to comprehend the dead which is characteristic of Positivism, the love of Space and the worship of Humanity, we and the beginnings of that artistic develops may have got a little confused as to what words mean.

A GOOD deal of attention has lately been survive her, and died in great obscurity on paid to the daughters of Louis XV. Attempts February 18, 1800. All who are interested in have been made by some to prove that one of the domestic history of the period which prethe six was a saint, by others to prove that ; ceded the great Revolution should turn to this three at least were stained with abominable article. M. Soury has consulted the chief crimes. Both are alike unsuccessful. Mdme. works recently published and a number of inLouise appears, from an article by M. Jules 'edited documents, and he has invested with Soury in the Revue des Deux Mondes, to have wonderful life and reality the biography of been diseased in mind and body, a mixture of these last daughters of the House of France. wounded vanity, ambition, casuistry, and in- ' .

Academy. trigue.' The others had, in greater or less degree, the merits and defects of the house of Bourbon. Voluptuous and full-blooded, devoted to the pleasures of the table and the chase, with constitutions prone to hereditary It is stated that in 1849 a brother of King discase, and good natural abilities debased by Coffee. named Aquasi Boachi, and then of the wretched education of the convent and the about twenty years of age, lived at Vienna for Court, and soured by the disappointments of a several months. He was taken from Coomas. useless life, they were but ill-fitted to bolster sie by some Dutchmen at the age of nine, up a falling dynasty, to foster the feeling of brought up at Amsterdam, and afterwards sent loyalty in an exasperated people, to recom- to the School of Mines at Freiberg. He mend the precepts of Ultramontanism to a spoke three or four European languages, and nation of sceptics and Encyclopedists. Their showed much intelligence and love of study. influence over their unhappy niece, Marie An- Not wishing to return to his country, he entoinette, was for evil, as she herself at last tered the service of the Dutch colony at recognized. Their language was too free for Batavia, where he was found by the Novara the by no means fastidious courtiers of the expedition. holding the office of director of eighteenth century. The affection which they mines, and enjoying the respect of all with bore their father, one of the redeeming traits whom he was brought in contact. Academy. in their character, deep and self-sacrificing as it was, was too effusive to escape scandal. The little traits which distinguished the sisters, except the scheming devotee Louise, and perhaps the timid Sophie, are well brought out With the object of improving the means of by M. Soury, who is a careful student and communication between Russia and Turkey, an able exponent of character. Their disposi- agreement was entered into last year between tions were mainly Bourbon, intermingled with the two governments to grant to a Dane of the some Polish traits inherited from their mother, name of Tityen a concession to lay down and Maria Leczinkska, whose joyless destiny irre-work a submarine cable between Odessa and sistibly reminds us of Catharine of Braganza, Constantinople. By virtue of this concession, as the records of the Louis Quinze period so | Tityen formed a company, and on May 11 often recall the vivid pages of Pepys and the last the task of laying the cable was success. England of his day. The record of their lives fully accomplished. The line has since been is in itself no great contribution to history. thoroughly tried, and is now in working order, The eldest, Elizabeth, became the wife of the the charge being fixed at 14 francs for an or. third son of Philip V. of Spain, afterwards dinary message from any inland town of Russia Duke of Parma, a dissolute, weak-minded to one in Turkey, and 12 francs from Odessa prince, who was always out at elbows. She to Constantinople.

Academy. was known as the poor Duchess, and was saved from utter misery by her love for her children, a feature which she shared in common with her father, Louis XV. The others were never married. Mdme. Louise, the youngest, retired ACCORDING to the most recent and careful in 1770 to the Carmelite monastery of St. calculations, the population of Japan amounts Denis, her “angel ” being Julienne de Mac- to 33,000,000. The country is divided into Mahon, and became the mainspring of Jesuit 717 districts, 12,000 towns, and 76,000 vil. intrigues and Ultramontane intolerance, and a lages, containing an aggregate of about 7,000,passionate collector of all sorts of relics, es- ooo houses, and no less than 99,000 Buddhist pecially the entire bodies of saints. Only two, temples. Among the population are in. Adelaide and Victoire, were living when the cluded 29 princes and princesses, 1,300 nobles, Revolution - which their father had but too 1,000,000 peasants (about half of whom are surely foreseen, and had done his best to hired labourers), and about Soo,000 merchants render inevitable — burst upon France. They and shopkeepers. The number of cripples is fied to Rome, and, on the approach of the estimated at about 100,000, and there are revolutionary armies, to Trieste, where Vic- 6,464 prisoners in confinement throughout the toire died in May, 1799. Her sister, the im country.

Academy. petuous and masculine Adelaide, did not long

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

I. ENGLISH VERS DE SOCIETE, . . . . Quarterly Review, .
II. THREE FEATHERS. By William Black, au-

thor of " The Strange Adventures of a

Phaeton,” “ The Princess of Thule,” etc., . Cornhill Magazine, . III. Homer's PLACE IN History. By Hon. W.

E. Gladstone, . . . . . . Contemporary Review, .
IV. ALICE LORRAINE. A Tale of the South

Downs. By the author of “ The Maid of
Sker,” etc. Part X., . .

Blackwood's Magazine,
V. MARY LAMB'S LETTERS, . . . . Spectator, . . .
VI. PROFESSOR TYNDALL'S ADDRESS, . . . Spectator, . . .


SONNET, : . . . . . . 706 |
MISCELLANY, . . . . . . . . . . . . .

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]


TERMS OF SUBSCRIPTION. For EIGHT DOLLARS, remitted directly to the Publishers, the LIVING AGE will be punctually forwarded for a year, free of postage. But we do not prepay postage on less than a year, nor when we have to pay commission for forwarding the money; nor when we club the LIVING Age with another periodical.

An extra copy of THE LIVING AGE is sent gratis to any one getting up a club of Five New Subscribers.

Remittances should be made by bank draft or check, or by post-office money-order, if possible. If neither of these can be procured, the money should be sent in a registered letter. All postmasters are obliged to register letters when requested to do so. Drafts, checks and money-orders should be made payable to the order of LITTELL & GAY.

« ПредишнаНапред »