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their own thoughts and aims to those of of human enemies, cannot afford to take the ordinary minds and characters they things easily. Action is forced upon have to influence, brings about the de- them; they must either succeed or concline and deterioration of men of origi- spicuously fail. In politics, usually, the nally fine endowments. It either pre- state of things is entirely different. The vents these qualities from developing, demand is rarely made for heroic measor stunts them where they have a certain ures; the prudence which is taught is degree of growth. Their nature is that rather which shuns difficulty and subdued to what it works in, like the dreads failure, than that blending of dyer's hand.' This evil is in part quali- caution and audacity which finds in the fied by another. It is chiefly the sec way of seeming danger the true path of ond-rate order of minds and characters safety. The education of practice in that betake themselves now to politics in Parliamentary politics is therefore for England-minds already on the level to the most part an education in the arts of which superiority needs to be reduced inaction, evasion, and delay. The blame before it can be effective. For this rea of doing nothing is usually less than the son, probably, whenever an occasion blame of doing amiss. A great writer, demands a hero in politics, he has been whose instinctive sagacity was often seldom found in the walks of professional wiser than the elaborated reflections of statesmanship. The national crisis which more painful thinkers, embodied the asks for a deliverer, finds him not among characteristic weakness of political trainthose who have been deteriorated and ing in England, when he made ‘How dwarfed by the ordinary work and asso not to do it' the aim of our statesmen. ciations of politics, but in a man who Lord Melbourne's 'Can't you leave it has lived among nobler ideas and asso alone ?' gave expression to the same ciations, and cultivated a larger and more paralysis of action in excessive caution liberal nature. The practice of affairs and prudence. Politics of this sort will is, no doubt, a discipline of some value; attract feeble minds and characters, or but nearly everything depends on what will enfeeble those naturally stronger. the affairs are. To manage the House The oratory which they foster will be of Commons, to get bills through com- that of mystification, amusement, and mittee, to administer a public office, does excitement Acquaintance with politinot seem usually to be good training for cal philosophy or economic science will very difficult business. When a consid- be felt to be wholly superfluous. Even erable emergency occurs there is almost that empirical knowledge of his age and invariably a breakdown of the depart- country, and of the assembly in and ments. The true discipline of public through which he rules, which are essenbusiness is to teach men readiness in ac tial to every practical statesman, will be tion and fertility in resources. Its ordi- little more than the charlatan's or nary effect is to harden them in routine, demagogue's acquaintance with the foiwhich suits poorly enough even the com- bles and passions of popular sentiment mon round and the daily task of busi- and opinion. The admiral who boasted ness, and which is a hindrance and which that he brought his ships home uninjured may be ruin when necessities, transcend- from seas in which he had not encouning precedents and rules of office, have tered the enemy, and the Frenchman to be encountered. The fact is that the whose achievement it was to have kept training of affairs, invaluable as it is, sel- himself alive during the French revoludom bears its proper fruit, unless the tion, represent the prevalent aims of affairs are a man's own, or when the con modern statesmanship. A ministry exsequences of failure are sure to come ists to keep itself in existence; if the upon him in a rapid and crushing man- ship, without going anywhere or doing
The merchant or capitalist whose anything, can be kept afloat, that is held ventures depend upon his personal vigi- to be all that can be required. This lance; the engineer who has to deal with fainéant policy does not require any overwhelming physical forces, the mili- high range of intellect. Men of the tary commander who has to contend at first order will seek careers which afford once with the not always benevolent ampler scope to capacity. If they beneutrality of nature and the watchfulness take themselves to public life, which afNew SERIES.—VOL. XXVI., No. 6
fords then no opportunity of great pub- which taxes the very highest gifts, and lic work, there is danger of their devoting in the doing of which the very humblest their energies to their own private and and most commonplace allies and inpersonal ends. Or merely to establish a struments acquire a sort of transfiguracharacter for 'honesty ’ will often prove tion. Their appearance and exertions enough to repose on. A picture, a statue, mark the high-water point in the national or a poem, does not receive additional life, an epoch of brief but fruitful work, value from the fact that its author is a an epoch of civil heroism. But the lanvery pleasant and straightforward sort guor comes after the exertion; and in of fellow; but 'honest Jack Althorp's' such a period of languor we seem now statesmanship rested entirely on this to be plunged. Even the men who basis of character; and a late Parlia- counted for much when they followed a mentary leader has been commended on great leader, become mere cyphers when the ground that there is not the making the figure which stood at their head is of a lie in him.' A career in which removed. character may be a substitute for ca- Apart from these singular cases of pacity must, from the nature of the case, moral and intellectual ascendency, the be pursued on a lower intellectual level gifts which make a Parliamentary leader than those in which intelligence and cul- are just those which make a man popular tivation and general or special knowl- in society. The cheerful animal spirits edge are absolutely essential.
and vigorous gaiety of temperament The natural and almost necessary in- which characterised Lord Palmerston, feriority of politicians as a class, is com- or the amusing qualities of a public enpatible with the unsurpassed intellectual tertainer which marked Charles Townand moral greatness of statesmanship of shend (not to seek for living illustrathe highest class. Men are not wanting tions), are what it most relishes—the in the history of any country, least of all qualities which make a first-rate host in in that of ours, and they have representa- a country house, or an amusing diner-out tives among us now, who have found in town.-Fraser's Magazine. or made work for themselves to do
LA BELLA MORTE.
BY CHARLES MACKAY.
I DREAMED a pleasant dream of Death,
As a lady fair and bright,
In the stillness of the night.
In tones so sweet and low
And not as a vengeful foe;
'No, my beloved ! no!
'Why should I fear? Thou canst not come
An hour before thy time.
Appointed and sublime.
with entire unconsciousness of the lin
gering pangs of life and the tenacity of THE LOVES OF THE ANGELS.
the human frame, believed, without any While these events were going on at doubt, that Mr. Musgrave would die, and the Castle Lord Stanton, for his part, did not know what was to be done about had corne to a standstill in the matter the exile, whose position would thus be which he had been drawn into so inad- completed changed. In the meantime vertently, and which had become so it seemed to him necessary to wait until very serious an occupation in his life. the issue of this illness should be known. He was young and unacquainted with Thus his doubtfulness was supplanted the ways of the world, and he did not by an apparent necessity, and the time know what step to take next. And he went on with nothing done. too was paralysed by the sudden catas- He went at first daily to inquire for trophe which had happened to the the old man, and never failed to see Squire. Was it his fault ? He could Lilias somewhere waiting for him with scarcely help an uneasy sense that by serious intent face, and eyes which agitating him unduly he had helped to questioned even when the lips did not bring on the sudden attack, and thus he speak. Lilias did not 'say much at any had left the Castle that evening with a time. She examined his face with her heavy burden on his mind. And Geoff, eyes and said “Papa ?" with a voice . which trembled; but it became by de cried Geoff, kissing in his turn the little grees less easy to satisfy Lilias by telling hand. her, as he did so often, that he had not But this touch had the same effect forgotten, that he was doing everything upon Lilias that her own kiss had on that could be done, smoothing the way Mary. She cried and sobbed and did for her father's return, or waiting till he her best to swallow it down.
Oh, Mr. could more successfully smooth the way. Geoff! I want papa !" she cried, with
You do not believe me, Lily,” Geoff that little convulsive break in her voice said, with a sense of being doubted, which is so pitiful in a child. She was which hurt him sadly. “Yes; but he seated on Mary's chair at the door of the is not your papa, Mr. Geoff, and you are hall, and he on the threshold at her feet. grown up and don't want any one,” Geoff did not know what kind of halfLilias said, with her lip quivering. The admiring, half-pitying sentiment he had visionary child was deeply cast down for this child. He could not admire by the condition of the house and the her enough, or wonder at her. She was recollection of the melancholy rigid fig- but a child, not equal to him in his ure which she had seen carried past, young manhood; and yet that very with a pang of indescribable pain and childhood in its unconsciousness was terror. Lilias seemed to see ĥim lying worlds above him, he thought. He felt in his room, where Mary now spent like the man in the story who loved the almost all her time, pale with that deadly fairy maiden – the young Immortal ; ashen paleness, his faded eyes half open, would she give up her visionary paradise his helpless hands lying like bits of rag, for his sake and learn to look at him, all the grey fingers huddled together. not as an angel but as a woman ? but Fright and sorrow together brought a for that she must be a woman first, and sob out of her heart whenever she at present she was but a child. When thought of this ; not moving, not able to he kissed her hand it cost Lilias no speak, or turn round, or look up at blush. She accepted it with childish, those who watched him; and still not angelical dignity. She took the kiss dead! Lilias felt her heart stand still sedately—" and the dark fountains of as she thought of her grandfather. her eyes filled full, and two great tears And she had no one to take refuge with. tumbled over, and a piteous quiver caine Martuccia was frightened too, and would to her lips, and she said, “Oh, Mr. not go up or down stairs alone. Lilias, Geoff, I want papa !" for her part, did all she could, out of This was when the Squire had been pride, and shame of her own weakness, ill about a week, six or seven days before to conceal her terror; but oh, to have Randolph took Nello away. Geoff went papa nigh to creep close to, to feel safe home riding, very full of thought. What because he was there ! A few tears could he do to please his little Lily? dropped from her eyes.
He preferred that she should creep close grown up and you don't want any one." to himself and tell him her troubles, but This went to Geoff's heart.
he could not resist that plaint, and even “Oh Lily, don't you think they would though it should be against himself he let you come to my mother?" he cried; must try what he could do to bring her this is too sad for you, this dismal father to her. Geoff thought a great house; and if Nello goes away as you deal on this subject, but it was very said-
fatiguing and unsatisfactory, for he did you think I would go and leave not know what to do, and after a while Mary all alone ? Nobody is sorry for he relapsed into the pleasanter path, and Mary except me—and Mr. Pen. When began to think of Lily. “Because of she comes out of her room I go and I the angels,” he said to himself as he kiss her hand, and she cries. She would jogged softly along, much more slowly be more ill and more weary,” said and reflectively than his horse liked to Lilias, with a precocious understanding, go. He forgot where he was going and “if there was (not some little thing to the engagements he had, and everything give her an excuse and make her cry.' that was practical and important as he
"My little Lily! who taught you all rambled on. The day was sweet in early that? it must have been the angels," autumn, the lake rippling musically upon
“ You are
the beach, the sky blue and crossed by little, and when she is grown up she will floating atoms of snowy cloud. Every- probably have nothing to say to me; thing in the world was sweet and pleas- but I shall never care for any one else. ant, to the young man. “ Because of Why should you shake your head ? I the angels;" he had never been quite never saw any one like her," said Geoff, clear what these words meant, but he growing solemn, and shaking off his seemed to see quite plainly now, though blush as he saw himself opposed. he could no more have explained than “Oh, Geoff !” Mary shook her head, he could have written Hamlet. 'Be- and contracted her beautiful brow, “I cause of the angels !” he seemed to do not think anything good can come make a little song of it as he went on, a out of that family ; but I must not drowsy, delicious burden like the hum- speak. I am jealous, I suppose. How ming of the bee. It was not he that said did you know I did not want you for it, he thought, but it murmured all about Annie or Fanny ?” she went on with a him, wrapping him in a soft enchant- smile that was a little strained and fictiment. Such a visionary love as his, per- tious; for Mary knew very well that she haps has need of those intoxications of was jealous, but not for Annie, or Fanetherial fancy : for nothing can be so ny, or of Geoff. like the love of an angel as that of a Hush,” he said, "I loved you beyoung man possessed by a tender vision- fore Lily, but you could not have me; ary passion for a child.
it is Lily, failing you. If you could but Geoff was so wrapt in his own thoughts have seen her just now. The squire is that he did not see for some time the lying between life and death, and Miss beckonings and signals that were coming Musgrave, who was so good to her, is to him from a carriage drawn up on the with him night and day, and poor little road to which the path descended, along Lily is so lonely and frightened. She which he was moving so gently. When looks at me with her little lip all quiverhis attention was at last caught, he saw ing, and says, “ Papa! I want papa. it was his cousin Mary, leaning half out Geoff almost cried himself to recollect of the window in her eagerness.
her piteous tone, and the tears came to “Give your horse to the footman and Mary's eyes. come in here-I have so much to say to “Ah! if she takes after him, Geoff! you," she said.
but that is just what I want to talk to But when he had done as she told him you about. I have done something that and taken his seat beside her, Lady Stan- you may think trash. I have spoken to ton kept looking at her young cousin. Sir Henry He is—well, he has his
“What is it?" she said ; you keep faults like the rest of us—but he is just; on smiling, and there is a little drowsy, he would not do a wrong thing. I told dreamy, intoxicated air about you ; what him that you had found out somehas happened, Geoff ?"
thingNothing; and it is unkind to say I “What did he say?" cried Geoff, look intoxicated. Could you not find a breathless, for Lady Stanton made a prettier word ?"
sudden pause. "I believe you are really, really ! - She was looking across him out at the Geoff, I think I know what it means, and window; her eyes had strayed past his I hope it is somebody very nice. Tell face, looking away from him as people me, who is she ?"
do with a natural artifice to allow the “This is strange," said Geoff; “in- first signs of displeasure to blow over, deed, it is true, I have been visiting a before they look an offended person in lady; but she is only twelve years old, the face. But as she looked, Lady Stanhe said, turning to her with a vivid ton's countenance changed, her lips fell blush.
apart, her eyes widened out, her face “Oh, Geoff !” Mary's brow contracted, paled, as if a cloud had passed over it. you do not mean that little girl ?” She gave a great cry, “Oh John, John!"
Why shouldn't I mean her? I will she said. make you my confessor, Cousin Mary. “What is it? who is it?" cried Geoff. I don't think I shall ever marry any one
She made him signs to have the carbut little Lily. Of course she is very riage stopped; she could not speak.