Obrázky na stránke

tury. She chiefly distinguished herself in portraiture, and

ANGELICA KAUFFMAN. if history correctly reports, she was the rage in the fash The story of woman in the works of literature and art, ionable world of her time, princes, cardinals and noble has large mixtures of tragedy in it, and impartial history Roman ladies, vying with each other to become her sitters. has often given us the picture of broken hearts and blighted She was made painter in ordinary by Pope Gregory XIII. hopes in the association with the noblest achievements of And now we come to the noblest name among the women genius. Of this sad and startling contrast, Angelica Kauffartists of the seventeenth century,

man furnishes an example. Her picture occupies a conspic

uous place in that most illustrious collection of artist porELISABETTA SIRANI.

traits which the world contains, in the Pitti palace at FlorPerhaps no artist that ever lived accomplished more

ence. We see, to employ the language of Rossi, “A woman within a life of only twenty-five years duration, than Elisa

still in the bloom of life, but destitute of all brilliancy of betta Sirani. Born in Bologna about the middle of the coloring, with an expression grave and pensive almost to seventeenth century, she enjoyed the instruction of some of melancholy. She is seated on a stone in the midst of a solthe most gifted masters of Italy, since Raphael and Cor- itary landscape, a portfolio with sketches in one hand, and reggio, especially Guido Reni. So high did her reputation

a pencil in the other. The attitude is unstudied almost to as a painter rise in the estimation of her contemporaries, negligence. There is no attempt at display; you feel as you. that she was called the "Raphael of women." There is lit- look on her, that every thought is absorbed in her vocatle reason to doubt that her early death was the result of tion." Her portrait represents the artist as a woman past murderous malice; and the most credible supposition is forty, just after her marriage with Antonino Zucchi, a Venthat she was poisoned through professional jealousy, a etian painter, in the year 1781. The bright dreams of youth thing quite common in that age, of which we have a notable had long been dissipated in the most crusbing and humiliinstance in the untimely taking off of Dominichino, by his ating experience which can fall upon a woman, her margreat rival Ribora, or his jealous pupils.

riage to and separation from a bigamist and villain, who, It was on the 14th of Nov. 1665, that the body of this during her long residence in England, where she was the gifted woman, whose youth gave promise rarely equaled pride of rank and royalty, won her hand under an assumed in the history of genius, was followed by a great procession title. The story is one of the saddest in the records of of weeping mourners to the church of St. Dominico in Bo- genius, and the fact that after such a mental convulsion, logna, where her obsequies were celebrated. In the little she was capable of producing some of her noblest works, chapel of the Madonna del Rosario, which this church con constitutes almost a miracle of character and endurance. tains cher mortal remains repose beside the dust of Guido Time would fail me to rehearse the career of this remarkaReni, her illustrious master. In her brief life, according to ble woman, who was born in the middle of the eighteenth her own testimony, she had executed one hundred and

century, some biographers say at Coire, in the canton of fifty pictures. One of the noblest of her works is

Grisons, Switzerland, others at Schwartzenberg. She diST. ANTHONY OF PODENA ADORING THE INFANT CHRIST.

vided the greater part of her productive life between EngThis painting, which takes rank with the first creations of land and Italy, and is thus claimed by four nationalities, Christian art in the seventeenth century, now hangs in Swiss, German, English and Italian. She was the friend of the Pinacothek of her native city Bologna, whose chief Winckelman and Goethe, and Sir Joshua Reynolds.; the favglory, you will remember, is the "Ecstasy of St. Cecilia,” by orite painter of popes, and cardinals, and kings, and queens. Raphael. Perhaps the noblest rendering in paint of a theme

Probably no woman who ever sought to occupy a niche kindred to this one, is that grand picture by Murillo in in the temple of art, had a loftier ambition, a more illustrithe cathedral at Seville, representing this holy man on ous patronage, and it must be added, a more fiery baptism his knees, in the act of welcoming the infant Christ,

of personal suffering than Angelica Kauffman. Goethe descending amid an escort of angels from the clouds.

wrote of her: “No living painter excels her in dignity, or Here we see the saint imprinting the kiss of devout af in the delicate taste with which she handles the pencil." fection upon the feet of the child of Bethlehem, whoin the When we read his fulsome fiattery, we have to consider, in Virgin Mother holds in her lap. The subject of the great the first place, that it was written in an age almost destiSpanish painter and of the gifted woman, whose creation we tute of artists of first rank, and second, that this is not the here behold, is essentially one and the same, and who shall first instance of gallantry and tender sentiment overmastersay that this work is unworthy to keep company with the ing the judgment of a great intellect, and exaggerating the masterpiece of Seville, and with that great multitude of qualities of a

Angelica Kauffman attempted painted saints which illustrate the piety and chivalry of enough in composition and painting to place her name faith, and glorify the Olympus of Christian art.

alongside of Raphael, and no artist among women more forThe eighteenth century, which witnessed the decadence cibly illustrates the incapability of her sex to achieve great of art all over the continent of Europe, and its rise in the results in the highest realms of art, which correspond to the British Isle, furnished to history the name of three women epic in literature, than does she. If ever a woman had the of great renown in the annals of painting. These are Ro

ambition and the opportunity to rise to the highest artistic salba Carriera, Angelica Kauffman, and Elizabeth Le Brun. level which man has attained, that woman was Angelica

Kauffman. Only let one read the titles of her one hundred

historical, classical, and religious paintings, as they are had a reputation co-extensive with the European conti found in Miss Clayton's "Biography of English Female Arnent as a portrait painter, and numbered among her pa- tists," and one would expect to find the "Odyssey” and trons almost all the leading contemporary princes of her "Æneid,” the Mariolatry of the middle ages, the four gospels time. She was elected a member of the academies of and all the poets of the ages in paint. Neither Raphael nor Rome, Bologna and Paris, and her name justly deserves a Michael Angelo, nor any other painter of the renaissance place of honor and renown in the record which the ages can show such an extensive list of works whose successful have written of woman's achievements in art. Mrs. Jami treatment demanded the highest skill in composition. And son calls her the finest crayon painter that ever lived. yet not one of all these hundred has attained a world-wide

And now we come to a woman whose name is probably fame, and while admitting the undoubted talent of the arbetter known than that of any other in the whole history tist, and her high rank among women who have handled

the pencil and the palette, we are compelled to look upon



of art:



this extensive gallery, with its lofty titles, as one of the "Though I am not a Catholic, your holiness," replied the most signal examples which history furnishes of a too soar artist, "yet I am a Christian." ing ambition, whose ideals were continually mocked by in. adequate performance. The life of Angelica Kauffman ex Not three years elapsed after the birth of Elizabeth Bautended over a period of nearly sixty-six years, and she died mann, when there was born in the city of Bordeaux a girl in Rome on the 7th of November, 1807. Her funeral was who was destined to win more artistic laurels than any under the supervision of the great sculptor, Canova, and woman in France; aye, we might add, than any woman in was conducted with great pomp, two of her paintings being the world. You will already have anticipated me when I carried in triumph immediately behind the coffin, and the say that the name of this wonderful child was Rosa Bonmortal remains being followed to their resting place in the heur, the daughter of a painter of moderate merit and slenchurch of St. Andrea delle Fratti by a long train of artists der income. She long since, by her own genius, almost and academicians. Her bust was placed in the Parthenon. unaided, placed herself and her family in circumstances of

We come now to one of the most illustrious names in the opulence, and sent the fame of her productions over the face art of the eighteenth century, that of

of the habitable globe. Having chosen the animal king

dom as the field of her artistic labors, it may readily be imwhose portrait we have from her own hand.

agined that her studio bears some resemblance to a barnThe picture

yard or a menagerie. represents the artist at the age of thirty-five, and the

The few concluding moments of my lecture shall be deoriginal now hangs in the Uffizi gallery at Florence.

voted to a notice of some names and works of women arIt was painted in 1790, during the triumphal journey

tists in America, which have achieved a prominent place which she made through Italy, Germany, and Russia, after

in public recognition. she was forced to quit France, her native country, by the

I scarcely need to say that the first name in the story of convulsions of the first revolution. A life more typical than

American achievements in art, in the order of time, and that of Madam Le Brun, of the corrupt age of Louis XV,

possibly that of merit as well, must be awarded to could scarcely be found. The daughter of a painter, she de

HARRIET HOSMER. veloped surprising genius for her art at the early age of

Born at Watertown, Massachusetts, in the year 1834, she seven, and ere she had reached ripe womanhood, had sent

had hardly reached the age of eighteen, when she went to her fame as an artist over the entire nation. The victim of

Rome and became a pupil in the studio of the great Eng. an unhappy marriage with a wretch who made merchandise of her genius and robbed her of its fruits, she sought | life has been spent, and most of her works executed in the

lish sculptor, John Gibson, since which time most of her relief in her art, and in the exercises of social pleasures and inperial city. Before she left her native country for the old dissipation which have left a cloud over her reputation. Her patrons were among the most illustrious princes of her

world, she was generously entertained in St. Louis, at the

home of a wealthy gentleman, Mr. Crow, who gave her a time, among them Marie Antoinette and the Russian monarehs Catherine II and Paul I. Her death took place on

commission to a large amount of money, to execute a statue

for his residence. The statue of "Omone," now in Mr. the 30th of March, 1842, at the age of nearly eighty-seven Crow's residence in St. Louis, was the result of this venture, years. Her works, as registered by herself, numbered six

and the work met with such favor that another statue was hundred and sixty-two portraits, fifteen large compositions, ordered for the public library of St. Louis. One of her and two hundred landscapes.

finest works is the figure of Beatrice Cenci, the beautiAnd thus we have threaded our way down the centuries,

ful maid who, on the 10th of September, 1599, sufand have left ourselves but a few moments in which to

fered death on the accusation of having been with her wander among the masterpieces of our own time to discover

brother and step-mother accessory to the murder of her own in the history of woman what we shall find to be the high

father. The chronicles of the time relate that when the est possibilities of art. In all that belongs to the domain of

priest entered the cell of the condemned girl to announce to intellect, it is needless to say that the nineteenth century

her that she was to die in the morning, he found her in has afforded to woman the largest opportunity and recorded likewise the most memorable achievements. In literature, has represented the heroine of the tragical tale. Unques

peaceful slumber. It was in this attitude that our artist the centuries which have gone before have given dim signs tionably it is one of the noblest works of sculpture ever exand public promise of the conquests of woman in our own

ecuted by a woman, and any city of America or of the time, and the same is true in the domain of art. There is

world, might be proud to possess such a treasure of art. no doubt that if all that woman has achieved in this form

The noble memorial bronze statue of Admiral Farragut of intellectual activity during the present century could be

was executed by gathered into one exposition, it would be found to surpass

MRS. VINNIE REAM HOXIE, her entire record during the ages which have gone before.

and now stands in Farragut Square, Washington. Like Following as nearly as we can a chronological sequence in

many another successful worker in literature and art, this recording the works of woman artists of the present cen

gifted lady has let loose a quiver full of the arrows of jealtury, we come next to the name of

ous criticism. A little army of masculine competitors, who MADAM ELIZABETH JIRECHAN nee BAUMANN,

vainly sought public commissions granted to her, have who was born in Warsaw on the 29th of November, 1819. been especially liberalin depreciation of her works. But none She belongs to a gifted family, her mother having been a can deny to her the essential qualities of a true artist, conpoet of no mean rank, and her sister Rosa a professor of stitutional genius and indefatigable industry. The noble mesacred music. Probably no work of one artist ever attracted morial of America's greatest naval hero is worthy of its place as much attention as the one which represents a group of among the art creations which adorn our National Capitol, “Chr ian martyrs in the Catacombs." It made a great and entitles the gifted lady who executed it to an honorab sensation in Rome in 1872, and Pope Pius IX manifested rank in such a record as has now passed under review. his interest in the work by sending for it that he might In the review which I have attempted this evening, I inspect it in the Vatican palace. The exhibition of it to his have tried to show woman at her best as an artist. holiness took place in one of the stanze of the Vatican. “I [The lecture was listened to closely by upwards of five am surprised," said the pope, “that one who is not a thousand people, which is the highest possible compliment Catholic could represent such

perfectly." that could be paid to the eloquent lecturer.)

a scene

[ocr errors]

MYRETURN TO ARCADY, AND HOW taking such “large ideas" into their heads. He owned every I FIND THINGS LOOKING.*

acre of land in the parish, and if any human being ever

realized the ideal of George Herbert's country parson, the [The author of the following article gives the reader a bird's-eye

rector of X— was that man. I have the best authority view of rural life in the eastern part of England. It is true to the

for saying that during those seven years when I was curate present times and to the history of the past; besides, it is written in

at X— the whole rent of the estate was spent upon im.a romantic style.--Editor THE CHAUTAUQUAN.]

provements:—I think every cottage in the parish was reIt is just a quarter of a century since I resigned the curacy built-many new ones were added-roads were made-land of a country parish in the east of England—where I had

was drained-schools were erected—the church rebuilt from spent seven years of rural felicity and, let me hope, pastoral

the foundations; and, in the meantime, if the people were usefulness—and became a dweller in the streets. During

not all they ought to have been, it was not because all was the twenty-five years that have passed since then I have not done to make them so, and I am bound to add, it was been emphatically a townsman; all my surroundings have

not because it was not made worth their while to be so. been those of town life—my sympathies have been appealed

Our dear friend was a guileless saint, whose whole soul was to by town people, and, where I have been brought into re bent on raising us to his own level—but, alas! it was too lation with the so-called working classes, these have been

high pressure for most of us—he did raise us—but oh! such artisans whose days were passed in the workshops of the a little way. The neighbors did not like it. I often used to city, not tillers of the soil and tenders of the herds.

hear a sneer or a growl from those that ought to have known In the autumn of 1879 I was sresented to the benefice I

better. “The X- people were spoilt and spoiling othersnow hold. My friends all prophesied that I should find

they were not laborers at all. Many of them had actually myself buried, and die of dullness, but they were wrong. I

an acre of land at a pound a year; the fellows actually kept have found no difficulty in throwing myself into the new

donkey carts, and as for their cottages-what! three bedlife-or must I call it the old life?-of a country parson with

rooms and no lodgers allowed-why, not even a gardener or real zest, and my return to my first love has brought with

a gamekeeper would expect it—and then look at them, too it such an abundant measure of fresh and pure delight as

—why, one of the fellows came to our church, last Sunday, arouses in me more thankfulness than surprise.

with a real good great-coat!” But retaining, as I do, a vivid recollection of my seven

With the charge of X-, where the rector did at least years' apprenticeship in a country village; in that bygone

half the work, I assisted also as curate of the neighboring age when the four-horse coaches were not yet quite extinct

parish of Y-Here I had a very different sort of place -when the reaping machine was scarcely known-when

to look after. In only one respect was Y— a more desirathe old men growled at the rapacity of the farmers who

ble parish; it was a happy Goshen on the gravel-X-was mowed their wheat instead of getting it hacked down with the

on the clay; in all other respects it was a dismal contrast to sickle—when our parish was looked upon as extraordinarily

its neighbor. 'Squire there was none, nor anything like a favored, because it had a day school with a grown man,

gentleman, save the rector; the land belonged to many and a well-trained one, to teach the little ones when there

owners, the farms were small and ill cultivated; the were church rates and a breakfast table groaning under the

laborers' dwellings were mean and high-rented, and all beburden of taxation--and when we country folks used to

longed to small, needy proprietors; there was a good deal of brew our own beer and gazed with awe upon the rich

noisy drunkenness-sometimes a fight, now and then a case rector who offered us claret after dinner, yondering how

of wife-beating; the village doctor lived seven miles off, any income could stand it; I am profoundly sensible of the

though there was always fever, ague, and English cholera change that has passed over village life since those early

hanging about the place, and I had a great deal of dispensdays, and, though some years off sixty still, I find myself

ing to do, which I did with an audacity, careless of consein the position of Rip Van Winkel, or the Seven Sleepers

quences, such as now makes me shudder to remember. of Ephesus, the position of one who has been slumbering

"Did you really give a tumbler of soap and water to that for half a lifetime in some old familiar haunts, and who has

child with the croup?” said my dear rector to me once in -suddenly awoke to discover that the "old order," with

his gentle way. “What was I to do? I had no ipecacuwhich be was so familiar, has passed away, and a new order

anha!” So the little maiden lived, and next winter stared become established.

with her round eyes while I emptied twelve grains of caloIf at the outset I seem to adopt a slightly egotistical tone,

mel on to a penny piece and turned it over on her father's I must beg my reader to bear with me. A man's views on

tongue and cured him of the cholera. “Any salivating ?”— most subjects are inevitably tinged by the circumstances

We never thought of that. Without hesitating, I should under which he makes his first start in life, and the oppor

have met such a case with rhubarb and magnesia! Sometunities he then enjoys of forming a correct estimate of his

times a farmer would come to me sheepishly, early in the neighbors' habits and rules of conduct, and he who under

morning, with a new agreement which he was going to pretakes to express an opinion upon the moral or economical

sent to his landlord, as illiterate as himself. I used to corstatus of any class of the community, may reasonably be

rect the spelling, or point out a weak point, or offered this called upon to show his credentials and to exhibit some

or that mild suggestion. Once or twice a family jar put two evidence of his qualification for the office of critic. “What

households at war, and there was a talk of going to law. We does this man know about it?" is a question that people

settled it by “holding a court," after a fashion, in my diminuwho are found fault with are sure to ask.

tive study, where once I remember fourteen men and women I held the curacy of X— for seven years under a man

came and quarrelled and bawled for two hours, but ended whose like I shall never see again. He was rich, he was

by shaking hands, some tears being shed and some very cultured, he was devout; his life was passed in a loftier re

strong language being used in the meantime. But there gion of thought and aspiration than common men can wot

was always cordiality toward the young parson, whom the of; but he was a philanthropist in advance of his time, who

people trusted because he was known to be very poor, and

was supposed to be able to understand the difficulties of carried out into practice in a remote country village what other people were dreaming of, making speeches or writing

making two ends meet on ten shillings a week. The result books about, and getting to be considered great thinkers for

was that during those seven years I was on the most inti

mate terms with farmers and laborers. Incredible as it may ap Augustus Jessopp in “Nineteenth Century."

pear, it is nevertheless a fact, that I have even been consulted

by a good old ranting preacher about the kind of sermon he Let us deal first with those who have suffered loss by the ought to preach from a cart at the next camp-meeting, and revolution that has gone on. that my experience ranged from writing a letter to making I leave to those who are our accepted teachers in the science a will, and from setting a bone to stopping a suicide. of political economy the question of the comparative cheap

I mention all these matters because I hold that it is hardly ness of large and small farms. I am even ready to concede possible for a man who has once been en rapport with any something. Small farms do mean expensive buildings to class to lose altogether that subtle faculty-call it power or keep up, do mean that the occupier is for the most part a call it knack-of making his way with that class, however needy, struggling man, do mean that he often lacks suffilong the interval may be during which he is separated from cient capital to cultivate his land to the best advantage. it; and I find that, as far as my "getting on” with the peas But they mean something else, too. They mean that in antry is concerned, that comes to me as easily and naturally those unpretending homesteads, where there are always some as if there had never been any solution of continuity-mak repairs needed which the landlord shakes his head at, there ing due allowance for the inevitable something which handi are to be found habitual thrift, sobriety, and self-denial; caps any one who comes as a stranger into a parish when he they mean boys and girls brought up in a rigorous school of is in the fifties, as compared with him who comes when he toil; they mean few accomplishments, no drawing-rooms, is in the twenties. It is pretty much the sort of difference small book learning, and "good old idees of what's right that one is conscious of at times in the saddle; I can ride and what ain't;" they mean that under those thatched roofs just as well as I could thirty years ago, but I can't fall as whose eaves have offered the swallows summer refuge for a well as I could in the old days.

century or more, two or three generations of frugal peasants Having said thus much by way of preamble, I proceed to have brought up their families, and yet paid their way, and offer the reader my impressions of what strike me as the could do it now if you wrung from them only as much rent most notable changes in country life which have come about as their fathers paid in the best times, or asked only as many during my absence from Arcadia.

shillings an acre as the big man on the other side of the The change in the face of the country generally is so hedge pays for his far larger holding. These people are the patent as to require only a few words. The small fields that only people left among us who are witnesses for the rugged used to be so picturesque and so wasteful-where one could virtue growing, alas! so rare, the only people who are not botanize with so much interest and pick up all sorts of odd so hasty to get rich that they can not afford to be honest, pieces of information-have gone or are rapidly going; the the only people who do not scorn manual labor as degradtall hedges, the high banks, the scrub or the bottoms where ing, and who do not pretend to think one man or one place a fox or a weasel might find a night's lodgings, the bye-lanes as good as another, who-poor simpletons !--still passionwhere the gipsies' tent used to pitch, where one could learn ately love the land of their fathers Romaney words, and, if we were very liberal and very wary,

With love far brought even listen to a Romaney's song and the scraping of his fid From out the storied past and used within the present; dle-all these things have vanished—"been done away and who, when compelled to make room for some go-ahead with, sir!'' and nobody can tell you by what authority these capitalist at last, turn their backs upon the old place with reforms have been brought about: the rusties don't like to many a sigh, and not seldom a sob, puzzled, ashamed, talk about it. But the broad tilths are as clean as gardens, and bitter at heart, with a sense of wrong, and possessed by and the face of the land looks up at you with a shiney, lux the conviction that the devil and man have been against urious self-complacency, suggesting sometimes rather a them or they would never have been "turned out of the old smirk than a smile.

home." All this has been brought about by a huge expenditure of Happily, however, the small farmers have not all been capital, such as the farmers, whom I knew in my earlier Ar got rid of; they always have had a hard time of it, but, (adian days, certainly had not at their command. The money strange to say, they are not the people who have suffered has been brought in by men who were not simple sons of the most from the bad harvests of the past few years. The soil-retired publicans and commercial travellers, town “gentleman farmer," whose pride was to carry on agriculshopkeepers, and those intelligent and pushing gentlemen, ture on the grand scale, finds that he has burnt his fingersyclept salesmen; or young men whose fathers have left and if he has done only that he is fortunate—the small octhem a few thousands and a defective education, with no cupant holds on. The explanation is to be sought in the fact particular vocation for anything and no opening anywhere, that the one must needs be, to a great extent, in the power men of no vices, no culture, and no tastes, but perfectly re of his subordinate; the other finds his shepherd, cowkeeper, spectable, often sometimes more, and with a desire to settle and yardman in his own household, and so keeps his labor and do something, and live a simple life with outdoor pur bill at the lowest possible figure, while at the same time the suits in the pure country air.

quality of the labor supplied is the best that can be secured. The rural districts have benefitted largely by this outpour- The small man, too, is by nature and long habit, cautious, ing of money, but they have lost something, too. The shop- thrifty, and slow to launch out into expense when things keepers in the market-towns have been enormous gainers are going well; he has a horror of being behindhand at the and have grown rich, their enterprise has met with its re bankers'; indeed he has some reluctance to have dealings with ward; the country lawyers have increased and multiplied a bank at all, his credit does not stand so high that he is ever and thriven exceedingly; the bankers have had a good time | tempted to trade far beyond his capital. He is never too of it; the landlords' rents have risen largely; the laborer's proud to make a profit out of anything, however trifling. wages have gone up, and his luxuries have multiplied sur What does the big man care for cocks and hens? He will prisingly. But the small farmers have grown fewer and tell you they are more trouble than they are worth. He eats fewer, their homesteads have fallen into decay or been the eggs for breakfast and the chickens for dinner, goes in pulled down, they and their families have been thrust out for fancy breeds, and runs up an ornamental "walk" for driven off to America, or New Zealand, or Australia, and them; he likes to look at them, or to see his name among the their places know them no more; the village shopkeepers competitors at the next poultry show. He keeps a gardener have almost been improved off the face of the earth, and too, and exhibits his roses against the country. "Sell my last, not least, the country clergy are relatively to their vegetables ?” said one of them to me, with some warmth. neighbors much poorer than they were, and are in process "I'm not brought to that yet. Do you take me for a nurof becoming seriously impoverished.


I am far from insinuating that these gentlemen have not a that sprawls about the porch, is to my mind to commit a right to do all this, for why should an agriculturist who has a crime which, in addition to all the rest of my sins, I embarked ten thousand pounds in the stocking of his farm should be sorry to have to answer for at the bar of God! not have his amusements as well as the tradesman, with Another class who have been losers by the changes that far less to fall back upon? But this I do say, that the land have been in operation, is the class of village tradesmen. I never could support-never will support-two gentlemanly am afraid they will find it hard to enlist any pity, and yet households. If the landlord is to live in luxury out of the they deserve some; their disappearance is surely to be rerent, the tenant must not expect to do so too: one or the gretted, and they are disappearing rapidly. The increased other must come down. Meanwhile the occupier of sixty facilities of locomotion must be credited with much of the or one hundred acres lives by his hen-house, his ducks, and loss of custom which has driven these men out-much, but his pigstye; his garden is not often an ornamental parterre, not all. The abolition of the turnpikes has been to the vilbut at any rate it brings in a trifle. He eats no eggs-it | lage shopkeepers a far more serious blow than the world would be eating money. He shambles to the next brewery generally supposes. The grocer from the town sends round with any beast of burden that can jiggle along and fetches his cart day by day, and pays no vexatious sixpence. The his load of grains, which he tells you solemnly have reached pushing dra per establishes an "agency' at convenient disan unconscionable price now —even sixpence a bushel. tances, and contributes nothing to the highways which he His wife or daughter takes her basket of butter to the next uses so largely. He grumbles loudly at the borough rates, market, or gets rid of the apples or the cabbages, or turns an but he grumbles more loudly if the roads are “rotten." If a honest penny by the flowers. The big man tells you that rolling stone trips up the high-stepping mare that tools him geese and turkeys don't pay. Of course they don't, if for along through the village street, the local newspaper soon weeks you have to pay a lad a shilling a day to look after hears of it, and the public are assured that the country can the one, and the others have to take their chance against not stand the negligence of the surveyors. Meanwhile it is the rats. But little Jem puts his little soul into it when he the village huckster who has to pay his heavy quota tois bidden to keep an eye on mother's "guslings," and it is as wards the rate, and, if the townsman who competes with good as a play to him to fetch home the truant turkeys when him saves ten pounds a year in sixpences, somebody has had they have marched off to forbidden lands, or to find out the burden shifted on to his shoulders. where that speckled hen has got her nest—she who will do I remember the time when among the most enterprising things on the sly.

and intelligent of the peasantry there were always two "How do you manage to pay all your outgoings in these careers open: the one was the hiring of "a bit of land" large had times?" I said to one good woman whose husband farms enough to keep a horse and a cow or two; the other was the some fifty acres at a ruinous rent. "Why, you see, sir, the setting up a shop where even in old age an honest frugal corn about pays the landlord and sich, and then we reckon couple might make a livelihood and never be forced to go to live, and there's seven of us, and we all help. I don't on the parish. know how we do, but we keep going!”

I seldom hear of any one looking forward to the former of I should think that 'the landlord and sich" would absorb these possible careers. I never find anyone inclined to all that this good man could make out of his stackyard in venture upon the latter. the best years, and yet he “gets along," and is so muddle There is yet another class who have been no gainers by headed, poor creature! as to be possessed by the notion that the great dissemination of money throughout the rural disseven mouths to fill implies seven pairs of hands to toil, tricts. The country parson is a much poorer man than he and has been so deplorably educated that he cannot get rid Not that his mere household expenses, the cost of of the old world prejudice that "children and the fruit of the mere food and raiment, have necessarily increased (except womb are an heritage and gift that cometh of the Lord." so far as the dying out of frugality and simplicity has to anAnd so those luxuries which the big man consumes and swer for the multiplication of his wants), for, though butcher's tells you he takes no account of, the small man lives by. meat and labor are enhanced in price, almost everything They constitute his margin of profit; and whereas half a else is cheaper than in my early Arcadian days—but the dozen bad years take all the large occupier's corn to pay the parson's expenses now are outside of his house, not in it, "landlord and sich," and, bringing him in face of a de and if he have half a dozen children, then his troubles begin. ficiency, force him back upon his capital or his banker to There are no more free passes for boys and girls, no nominaenable him to keep up the pace which he knows not how to tions to this or that well-endowed school, no close exhibislack-for are we not all children of habit?-the smaller tions at the universities, no patronage to this or that post. man is only a little worse off than he was before. They "Open competition" has thrown all the good things into the must be sorry harvests indeed when we can not make up for laps of the wealthy. What chance has an average boy bred bad corn crops by getting some "turn of luck," as he calls up in a country parsonage against another who from childit, from his poultry, his vegetables, or his dairy. "I bless hood has had all the advantages of the very best and most the Lord for one thing, as I heard you say, Doctor, though careful training that is to be found upon the face of the it warn’t in no sermon!” said one of them to me the other earth? "Poor country clergymen are none the better for day. “What was that?" I asked. “Why! didn't you tell being poor,” they are rudely told: "the country does not me last winter as the coppers ain't all tails?

want to help the needy, but the meritorious. It is as if And yet these are the men whom economists and agents admission to the pool of Bethesda could only be obtained by and capitalists are combining to oust from their holdings. a doctor's certificate that the sturdy patient was not Nevertheless they are the very salt of the earth, and among afflicted with any disease. them are to be found not only the best, but almost the only Moreover, there is one source of income which has almost remaining specimens of the slow, silent, stolid, sturdy Eng- entirely gone from the clergy since my younger days: I lish yeoman, whom you may knock about all day and all mean tuition. It used to be taken for granted that every night, but who will never suspect that he is getting beaten country clergyman was a scholar, and in the main this was till you squeeze the life out of him by lifting him from his true. Relatively to the rest of the community I do not hesimother earth, and who never will confess that he can be tate to say that thirty years ago a country parson was a betbeaten as long as you "fight fair!" To worry such a class as ter educated man than his neighbors. The schools throughthis from their ramshackle little houses, where their fathers out the length and breadth of the land were in a very unsatplanted the apple trees and their mothers the honeysuckle isfactory state, and needed the overhauling which they have



« PredošláPokračovať »