Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

15 erthygl ar y dudalen hon

lltetmpolitan: (Sffsstp.


lltetmpolitan: (Sffsstp. BY OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. ,fm remarks under thi-s head are te be regarded as the ex- rt' -fjon of independent opinion, from the pea of a gentleman ,1 rh«;,i we have ttuj greatest confidence, but for which we oevcrthwleas do not hold ourselves responsible.1 Already in the marts of commerce, the counting- house and the factory, the splendid mansions of the rLh and the cottage homes of the poor, has that simple and affecting letter of the Queen been sympathisingly read. One touch of nature makes the whole world kin," and there are many touches of nature in this letter from the Sovereign to her people. As the widowed mother, writing with earnest affection of her eldest son— mother and son so dear to the country—the royal lady touches a peculiarly tender chord in many ;1, heart, but the whole letter—so earnest, so dignified, and yet so homely—will for ages to come remain a memorial of the kindly relations between monarch and subjects. It is a trite remark that Death levels all distinctions that the King of Terrors lays equally low the prince and the peasant; but sickness has the same effsct. The Prince of Wales during his severe illness has had all the advantages that medical science c-juld procure, and tha whole nation has been waiting, watching, f«ariag and hoping; but just the same kindly sympathies, just the same affection, just the same alternation ■> of hope and fear have exerted rheir varying influence a.3 would have been exerted in the humblest family among her Majesty's subject?. .Yrflieuon has its sweet use. and the long and danger- ous illness of the Prince, from which he is now happily recovering, has tended to strengthen more than ever the bonds between Queen and people. lhave somewhere read that if Lancashire is prosperoua England is prosperous. Certainly the condition of this great manufacturing county is some criterion of that of the United Kingdom, and it is highly satis- factory therefore to read such favourable accounts from the North. It seems that the rateable value of Lanca- shire property has increased two and a half millions sterling. Lord Derby's remark that this absolutely proves the material progress of the country, and his statement that both her 'manufacturing and agri- cultural interests are aetive, must be pleasing to the community at large, especially considering the aphorism to which I have referred. Cheering, too, is it to find that news of similar prosperity reaches us from other quarters while here in the metropolis, trade, makimg due allowance for the time of the year, is decidedly briak employment is general; and pauperism has diminished and is diminishing. I could easily cite facts in proof of the last assertion, but facts of this kind are dry reading. I do not think, however, that my con- clusion will be disputed. At present, at any rate, the year 1872 bids fair to be a prosperous one. The Revenue Returns which have just been issued, though dealing with tho past, confirm this hope very pleasantly. When we find that for the last quarter of 1871 the revenue was £924,IH5 more than during the correspond- ing quarter of the previous year, and that we have up- wards of two millions more revenue during the last nine months of the past year than during the corre- sponding period of the preceding year—when we find these agreeable facts, why—twopence off the income- tax is about the least we can expect. That trade societies are not wholly established for the purpose of keeping up wages and otherwise fighting the battle of Labour against Capital, we all know, but sometimes forget. The Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners has just presented, with no little pomp and circumstance, the sum of one hundred pounds to one of its members, who was disabled for life by having his left hand cut off with a circular saw. When the money was being handed to him it was mentioned that this was another instance of the ratepayers being spared frotn a burden that otherwise would have fallen upon them. Very true, and not at all unimportant. But I wonder whether such facts as these will influence the Government when preparing their bill on Friendly and "Benefit societies, which is to be introduced next session. It will be rather difficult to separate two objects aimed at in one subscription whereas trade societies, as trade unions in the ordinary acceptation of the term, can hardly, one would think, be brought within the opera- tion of the measure about to be brought forward. Working-men and labourers now out of employment —I suppose there are some of these, as there always are —might do a worse thing than to accept an offer now made to them to go out to New Zealand to aid in the construction of a railway "over there." True, New Zealand is a precious long way off, but then it piT-se^ses a delicious climate and a fine soil, and there are ample scop.i and verge enough for the labours of T^n^li.-ih mechanics, artisans, and labourers. Moreover, a railway always creates work long after it is made —in all sorts of direct ways. It is rather strange, then, that considerable difficulty is found in procuring the number of labourers required. Xo 189. than 1,000 men ar*ui^ed-L>uw fmvazd. market at home. Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council is a. curious and nondescript body, dealing with a number of very different things—from the drainage of a town up to a question of the regency from the dimensions of a cattle-truck up to a national form of prayer or thanksgiving. But in the multitude of counsellors there wauteth not wisdom, and whatever the Privy Councillors do is generally done well, and after mature consideration. I suppose these councillors have inspected the new Foreign Cattle Market, either personally or by deputy. At all events they are frraciously pleased to express their satisfaction with it; and In doing this they ratify the opinion of all who have. like your correspondent, had the opportunity of rambling through the new market, and noticing its splendid arrangements for the reception, slaughter, and distribution of foreign cattle. Wandering through the alleys, corridors, and pens of this fine market the other day, I came to the conclusion—which by no means demanded any peculiar sagacity or profundity—that this new establishment will exert an immense influence on tho arrival of foreign cattle in the metropolis, in- creasing largely the supply, and consequently cheapen- ing meat in London, and, as a second consequence, elsewhere. How important this result will be I need not insist upon. Considering that this certainly will be the result, to say nothing of innumerable other advantages, the only wonder is that we have never had a Foreign Cattle Market before. The Liverpool magistrates have hit upon a good idea, in endeavouring to repress drunkenness. Besides fining offenders, their names and addresses are to be published. I believe this will have a decidedly good effect. Cases of people being brought up fur being "drunk and incapable," and being fined, are seldom worth reporting, and thus drunkards escape the penalty of publicity. But the official publication of their names-a kind of moral pillory—will, probably, have a good effect. If it has, other magistrates might take the hint, and it might even be embodied in an Act of Parliamant. I am glad to learn that Mr. George Cruickshank is engaged on hia Autobiography. If it is not to be pub- lished till after his death, may it be many a year yet before it sees the light But if I were great man enough to write an autobiography, worth reading, I should like to have it published so that I could smub this objector, confound that disputant, and so on. Would it not be well for the veteran artist to do the same ? At present, perhaps, society hardly does him justice. He has exerted an immense influence on ) the social progress of this country—much greater than i", generally supposed. To many people Mr. Cruiokshank is only known by his pictures of The Bottle and the Worship of Bacchus "—pic- tures that have been lectured upon and written about times without number. But he was a powerful artist before most of us were born, and his sketches date, I believe, as far back as 1806, when George the Third I was king." Could all his productions bo collected, and placed in chronological order, they would form a < gallery in themselves thoroughly "unique in character, and would prove a marvellously interesting study with regard to the political and social progress of the people: during upwards of half a century. < On the last Sunday and the last day of the Old Year, when multitudes of people in the metropolis were preparing for their watch-night services, a con- ¡ siderable number of railway servants met at a tavern 1 to further the ten hours' movement. That a Sunday evening should be chosen for such a purpose is » fact; that is certainly to be regretted, and I can well under- a utand that numbers of good people would be shocked by such a meeting on the Sabbath evening, almost simultaneously with large congregations assembling for the purpose of solemnly recognising the passing from one year to another. But these men, be it 1 remembered, did not choose Sunday evening. They 1 are occupied so continuously on other evenings that they have no time to meet; they work such long 1 hours that they have not an hour to spare to aim at ] the lessening of their work they meet on Sunday to protest against so much Sunday work. And I 1 think they are perfectly right. The facts stated 1 at this meeting incontestibly prove it and the public are directly interested in the move- t rnent inasmuch as the unreasonable protraction of the work of signalmen, pointsmen, &c., has an undoubted j connection with railway accidents. All honour to Mr. f JHas-, for espousing the cause of railway workmen as A he has done The advocacy of such a man is at once S n proof of the justice of the cause, and a guarantee for r its success. t Nearly a year ago the preliminaries of peace were a discussed by the French and Germans, and when in due] time the treaty of peace was signed by the t representatives of nations that had been en- a ueavouring to ruin each other, it was fondly h imagined by other nations that peace would be secured and so it has been—with a vengeance! There are, just now, too many evidences of this. French and German newspapers preach hatred, and in some parts of France there are continual outrages inflicted on Germans. In some cases it is undeniable that murder has been committed by Frenchmen, the victims being German soldiers. Such painful facts as these ought to read humanity a lesson. War, no doubt, settles disputes—after a fashion, but it always leaves a heritage of hatred and vengeance. Can it be said that France settles down contentedly under the arrange- ments of the treaty of peace? Far from it. The efforts now being made to reorganise her army tell a very different tale.














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