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tematic and intemperate abuse of the government, which, as the law then stood, had no means of arresting the evil but repeated prosecutions for libel, by which the editor was finally ruined. The power of removal to England was soon after granted by parliament to the local government, and was exerted by Lord Coruwallis in the case of the editor of the Bengal Journal. Lord Wellesley had recourse to the same measure in regard to Mr. M'Lean, editor of the Telegraph. During the administration of that nobleman a censorship was established, and the duty was intrusted to the secretary to government. Restrictions were also imposed as to the publication, during war, of naval intelligence. Such were the restrictions until the arrival of Lord Hastings, who abolished the censorship, and substituted regulations prohibiting the original discussion of certain classes of subjects, or the republication of passages treating of such subjects, from the English newspapers, Animadversions on the Indian administration in England and in India were forbidden in this new code ; offensive remarks upon the members in council, the judges of the Supreme Court, and the Lord Bishop of Calcutta, and, generally, all private scandal. Discussions, having a tendency to excite alarm among the natives on the subject of religion, were also prohibited; and removal to England continued to be held out as the penalty of disobedience. However it might have suited the interest of individuals, to assert that the substitution of these declaratory and prohibitory regulations for the censorship had given an increased latitude of discussion to the periodical press—it was obvious that substantially the matter remained as before; in short, that the alteration only extended to the permission of printing that without inspection which, practically, under the former system, could not have failed to receive the imprimatur of the censor.
The new system had, however, the disadvantage of bringing the editors of newspapers at once under the inflictive power of the government : it was thus, in the case of timid persons, calculated still further to restrict the freedom of publication ; while, with the bold or the mischievous, the ever-questionable applicability of the regulation was likely, by encouraging habitual approach to the verge of offence, to produce a tone of feeling and expression that could not fail to end in positive infringement. Such was the progress and end of the Calcutta Journal, edited by Mr. Buckingham. A conviction of the insufficiency of the regulations to enforce that daily and immediate control over the press, the right to which had never been ceded by the government, and the inapplicability of the penalty of removal to natives, led to the adoption of an additional restraint, by which every printer was obliged to have a license to print any paper, pamphlet, or work whatsoever;
the license to be withdrawn on transgression of any of the regulations under which the press had been placed. On the whole, therefore, the abolition of the censorship has led to increased restrictions on the press; and it is not to be expected that, under the present system, any editor, whether British or native, will subject the property vested in the materials of a paper to immediate depreciation, by neglect or resistance.
The state of the press in India is discussed by Sir John Malcolm:-1st, as it affects the British community; and, secondly, as to its influence upon the native population. He observes, that
the English part of the population is, perhaps, as respectable a community as any in the world, but they are not what the English would designate as a public. The great majority are civil or military servants, of whom a very considerable proportion hold their offices at the pleasure of the local government under which they serve; and the other part, composed of merchants, free traders, missionaries, shopkeepers, and citizens, not in the service of government, enjoy, under the protection of the British courts of law, every privilege of an Englishman, except such as the interest of the Indian empire would make it dangerous for them to possess.' -p. 308. He considers that as, in the community thus composed,
professional feeling, ignorance, disaffection, prejudice, and enthusiasm swell the numbers of the advocates of a free press, it is from their support that it has lately derived, and will hereafter derive, confidence in its attacks upon the local administration, and upon the usages and religion of the natives of India,' and that • there is no preventing this effect of the law as exclusively appealed to; and the victories which editors obtain over government and its officers will daily strengthen a cause which has gained in a short period such ground both in India and England.' From these observations it may be inferred, that Sir John Malcolm conceives that the freedom of the press would have the effect of increasing among the British community the existing dislike to the restraints of an administration, necessarily conducted upon principles essentially different from those happily established in their native country; and that individual and party zeal would lead them to encourage, through the agency of the press, political changes incompatible with the security of our empire in India, and, in their present state of civilization and knowledge, with the well-being of the natives themselves. And this is the conclusion distinctly pressed by the Civil Servant in a passage which, as we conceive, embodies in a very few words the common sense of the whole subject.
' A representative government (says this author) and a free press are naturally co-existing political circumstances; the freedom of the press prevents the representative system from degenerating into a
mere form; it is the element without which political vitality could not survive; but, in a government where every authority centres in the executive, the freedom of the press is an antagonist principle, always tending to the dissolution of the administrative conformation. Sic volo, sic jubeo, when once the government have adopted a measure, must be the maxim of all despotisms: discussion and implicit obedience are incompatible, and the only quarter from whence à control, consistent with the duration of our empire, can be exerted over public functionaries in India, is England.'-p. 41.
Sir John Malcolm says, that for the last thirty-five years inflam matory papers, addressed to the interests and passions of our native troops, and subversive of the British power, have been most actively circulated in different parts of India ; that these have too often made deep impressions; and that the further extension of the mischief is to be attributed solely to the difficulty of multiplying copies and to the fear of detection.'-(Vol. ii. p. 317.) We have, further, the authority of Sir John Malcolm for the fact, that the higher ranks of the Mahomedan population, and the Brahmins amongst the Hindoos, who, in the character of spiritual instructors, possess the most unbounded influence over the military classes, are disaffected towards the British government. The comparatively recent loss of empire accounts abundantly for that feeling on the part of the Mahomedans; while the destruction of the independence of the still subsisting Hindoo states, by narrowing so lamentably the field of intrigue in which the Brahmins universally found their most congenial and profitable occupation, has produced the same effect with that ambitious priesthood. There can be little doubt that in a press, unrestricted by the direct control of the executive authority, individuals so disposed would discover a ready medium for disturbing the minds, and probably shaking the fidelity, of our army. Upon that fidelity rest the existence of our empire in India, the immediate tranquillity of the country, and consequently the social improvement of the natives themselves. These are practical considerations of too great importance to be sacrificed for the speculative advantages that might arise from a more direct restraint upon the measures of the local governments in India,—nay, even for the chance of placing the sacred truths of Christianity more generally within reach of the native population :--for this, after all, would be but a chance; and there would be blended with it the grievous risk of extinguishing, in a sudden agony of political convulsion, the faint glimmering of religious light that has already begun to make itself visible amidst the darkness of Indian superstition.
The publications which we have been considering furnish of themselves sufficient evidence of the boldness with which, as one VOL. XXXV. NO. LXIX.
of them expresses it, the spirit of inquiry is now walking the face of the waters that divide Europe from India ;' and they are all deserving of very careful attention from those who are peculiarly interested in the concerns of our Asiatic empire. Though we differ, in some important particulars, from the opinions of Sir John Malcolm, we must always do justice to the liberal spirit in which they are conceived, and the manliness with which they are expressed; -the work, as a whole, is worthy of its author's reputation. It is proper, for an obvious reason, to observe, that the Letter of the Civil Servant appeared earlier than the more elaborate performance with which we have so often had occasion to compare its views; must take the liberty of saying that the author, in his brief and hasty style of composition, has done slender justice either to his materials or to his talents
. Colonel Stewart's pamphlet, being principally occupied with the Burmese war, has not been so often cited by us; but we cannot conclude without expressing our sense of the ability displayed in it also. It was published some months before the Letter of the Civil Servant.
Art. III.-Translations from the Servian Minstrelsy : to which
are added some Specimens of Anglo-Norman Romances. 4to. London. 1826. F this volume a very small edition only has been printed for
private circulation; but a copy has been laid upon our table, with leave to make what use of it we might think fit-a permission of which we willingly avail ourselves. For the last twelve years, the popular poetry of the Sclavonic nations, and in particular of the Servians, has received much attention in Germany; and we are happy to hear that the extensive collections published at Vienna and at Leipsig have very recently been followed by another (M. Vesely's) from the press of Pest. When Gibbon wrote his History, he took occasion to say, that the Illyrian provinces were the most obscure part of Europe; and, in spite of the insurrection which was put an end to by the peace of Bucharest, they remained so, until the curiosity of the learned began to be attracted by the discovery originally, we believe, set forth in the Hungarisches Magazin'— that there had lurked for centuries among those untravelled regions a large body of ballads, historical and romantic, not unworthy of being placed on the same shelf with the Cancioneros' of Spain, our own. Minstrelsies,' and the northern Kiæmpe Viser.'
No English ear will ever be persuaded that there is any ballad in the world to be compared with “Chevy Chase;' no Spaniard will ever believe that any other chivalries have been sung as nobly
as those of Castile and Grenada: nor can it be expected that we should meet with a Scandinavian critic less strongly prepossessed with the superiority of his own Svend Vonveds and Reddar Olles. We suspect, however, that when these various fountains of romance are all equally familiarized, as it appears likely they soon will be, to the general reading public' of Europe, the ballads of the long-trampled Servians may be found entitled to a place not very far below those of haughtier nations, whose ancestors have been enabled to hand them down inheritances more valuable than ditties old and plain,' for the benefit of • The spinsters and the knitters in the sun,
And the free maids that weave their thread with bones.' This people maintained for ages a dubious struggle with the power of the Byzantine empire; but the Turk had grappled with, and utterly broken them, nearly a century before the final ruin of Constantinople. The campaign in which their freedom was beaten down, never again effectually to re-assert itself, is abundantly celebrated, as might be expected, in their minstrelsy. There the immense superiority of numbers is given to the host of Amurath I., of valour and conduct to the heroes of Lazarus, King, Despot, Zar, or Krall of Servia; and the fatal issue of the field of Kossova is ascribed solely to the treason of the prince's brother-in-law, Vuk, who went over to the Sultan with 12,000 men in the midst of the contest. The story of that conclusive battle is thus given in the page of our old classic Knolles, of whom, if language were everything, Dr. Johnson might perhaps have said without absurdityat the time when he did say so—that he was the first of all Cour] historians, unfortunate only in his subject.'
'Eurenoses, a man of great experience, told Amurath that the Christians were for the most part well and strongly armed, and shouldring close together in their charge, would be like a rock of iron, unable to be pierced; but if, in joyning the battle, he would a little retire, the Christians, following upon good hope, would so loose their close standing (the chief part of their strength) and leave an entrance for his men. Upon which resolution, Amurath commanded the archers to give the first charge; which they couragiously performed. At which time, the Turks army gave ground a little ; which the Christians perceiving, with great force assailed the left wing of their army, and, after a hard and cruel fight, put the same to flight; which Bajazet seeing, with such fury renewed the battel, that the Turks which before, as men discouraged, fled in the left wing, began now to turn again upon their enemies; and the Christians, having as they thought already got the victory, were to begin a great battel. In which bloody flight many thousands fell on both sides; the brightness of the armour and weapons was as it had been the lightening; the multitude of launces and other horsemen's staves, shadowed the light of