Puslapio vaizdai

What matters it to men that idle dreamers | mark is, that for the tribes in these islands the

think? The men of the age are those who think and act. To breathe into the lifeless form of thought the vitality of action is the work of genius. The thoughts, like the clerk's handwriting in a bill of exchange, may be useless, until a signature gives them value and currency. This is exactly the respective relations of indolent thinking, and thought and action, on the world's price-lists. The mere jewellery of literature is of small use to a world perishing for lack of necessaries. Now, both these men thought and acted. They pursued widely different roads to radically different ends; but both were earnest workers, and there is to be found the most valuable genius in true earnestness.

time has yet scarcely come. Even under the strict discipline of Rome, however, and beneath its great exactions of belief, we think that the Lowland Scotch always doubted. There is sufficient evidence of this fact in the writings of Sir David Lindsay of the Mount, and his contemporaries and predecessors. There is still more satisfactory evidence in the lightninglike rapidity with which the doctrines of the Reformation spread amongst them at a period when communication was slow, and the power of the press almost unknown. There may have been an aptitude in the people to receive | the opinions then taught, in order, upon usual principles, to account for the celerity of the change. It is unnecessary to assume that this must be the explanation, but on ordinary principles and experience we should form that opinion; and it is not improbable that, from traditional

In one view there was between their respective attainments a palpable and marked difference. O'Connell was a lawyer and a literary man; but we believe that he was not a scientific man. Chalmers touched every point of human know-fragments running downwards from distant days, ledge with the confident finger of a master. His conclusions may have been sometimes erroneous, but it was always evident that he was acquainted with the subjects of which he wrote or spoke. There was no division of human learning where he did not penetrate, and he never entered any department without making the path clearer to those who were to follow. From some of his deductions in political science we dissented. The theory of supporting pauperism, common to the Scottish divine and the Irish politician, was in our opinion utterly inadequate. As planned by Dr. Chalmers, it included the outward framework of the millenium, and we are dealers with a sinful world. It embraced, at least, the idea that all men should be church-goers, and all the wealthy men should be generous alms-givers, and all the poor economical and industrious; but without waiting till the whole machine was fitly put together, his sanguine temperament led him to set one wheel agoing before the others were finished, and it broke down. It could not well be otherwise, for to our view it seemed like the expectation of work from a steam-engine while the steam is only half formed.

The difference between the nature of the populations on whom they had principally to operate, marks a distinction in their character. Chalmers had to deal with a shrewd, cool, examining and calculating, rather a disputative people. O'Connell wielded a mass of zealous, warm-hearted, unthinking and believing minds. The characteristic of the unmixed Celt is to believe. He is never so happy as when led and guided. He relies always implicitly on something told to him by a superior authority, and is never careful to examine its proofs. The people amongst whom Chalmers was cast inquire before they believe. They are perpetually demanding evidences and reasons. Their ages of superstitious reliance were run out before he arose. They had their time of childhood, which was passed. We say not that the Celtic character does not admit of similar modification and change. Our only re

He had no

and from other causes, a substratum of disbelief,
not in Christianity, certainly, but in the pretences
of the priesthood, had always occupied the inner
depths of the Scottish mind. By the Irish there
was and is little or no doubt or hesitation. They
are mistaken by those who consider them an irre-
ligious people, for they are fervent and zealous
believers in the doctrines that they have been
taught. Mr. O'Connell knew this characteristic.
He knew the influence that he held in the friend-
ship and alliance of the priests. He required
few exertions to secure the allegiance of his fol-
lowers. To rouse their zeal, to promote their
activity, to exhibit their numbers, to consolidate
their strength, and to wield this gigantic weapon,
he made pilgrimages, he held meetings, he be-
sought, he incited, he counselled, he dictated;
but he never reasoned, not because he was weak
of fence at that point, but because he did not re-
quire to reason. His assertions were at once
received, believed, and circulated.
fear for an enemy within his camp. He dreaded
no doubting friend or opposing foe amongst his
own. Therefore he had no such fight as Chal-
mers-whose every step required to be ex-
plained-whose every advance was the cause
and the fruit of battling contest; who had al-
ways to argue, and enforce, and explain the
causes, and reasons, and proprieties of each
advance. In their later years the scene was
changed. Peace came to Chalmers: strife
to O'Connell. The former crossed the Jordan,
on the banks of which he had lingered long, and
placed its waters between him and a moral wil-
derness of doubters, and dreaders, and cautious
men, who ever kept an eye upon the riches by the
Nile, and the beauties of the plain. Hencefor-
ward his friends and followers were compact and
undivided. It fared otherwise with O'Connell.
Within the very walls of his prison, amongst his
companions of the State trials, there were those
who doubted his wisdom. A new party arose in
Ireland-a fierce, implacable party—who brought
poetry into politics, and thought of conquering the
Saxon by rhymes. This section of the Irish

knew nothing of subtle devices.

They had no policy but that of hatred. To hate England, and to humble England, was with them an object dearer even than to raise Ireland. They would have exchanged her connexion for any yoke, and, we believe, would rather have sent representatives to Baltimore than to London. A few years earlier in his lifetime O'Connell would have put his heel on these young rebels, and squeezed vitality out of their character. When they appeared his energy was gone; and they had to cope not with the living man but with his corpse. There was thus in their end a remarkable dissimilarity. That of Chalmers was eminently peace: of O'Connell vexation and difficulty.

They were born in circumstances not greatly dissimilar. They were sons of the people. The idea of O'Connell's aristocratic origin was necessary to his greatness in Ireland. He required to be thought high by birth to attain trust as a leader. The circumstance exhibits another difference in the Scotch and Irish character. The former are naturally democratic: the latter are feudal. The great bulk of the Scotch people who honoured and respected Dr. Chalmers, never inquired whether his father was a shoemaker, a tailor, a shopkeeper, or a bonnet-laird. They had a general idea that he came of honest parentage-if they had any idea on the subject-but the fact did not greatly interest them. On the other hand, O'Connell was a more powerful man than he would have been without that O'. It was the imprimatur of an old family-the mint stamp of gentle blood. It was like a copyright—a license to act, and lead, and teach, and order. Even O'Connell himself was not devoid of latent respect for aristocratic honours. In the midst of his democracy there was a tendency carrying him backwards. He looked behind, and loved the jagged points of feudalism that struck out in the long vista of ages, covering, with a profitless verdure, the hard-heartedness of an unproductive soil. He saw greatness in the mist of the middle ages, and traced out for himself pictures of excellence in the cowled monk and the moping nun-the mailclad baron, and the figments of his vassals' happiness. But Chalmers and O'Connell were both of, from, and for the people. Both respected rank ―leaned towards dignities-anticipated, at different periods of their lives, earnestness from " tural leaders"—and were disappointed because they had to learn by bitter experience that they lived at the dawning of the age of chivalry, of intellect, and nobility of mind, when the money power is breaking down all feudal distinctions, and fulfilling its own destiny by making way for another power and a better influence.


They were born nearly at the same period. They found their respective countries in a state of vassalage. The creed of O'Connell and the country of Chalmers were proscribed. The faith of the one and the countrymen of the other were outlawed. The Roman Catholics of Ireland and all the people of Scotland, with few exceptions, were put out of the Constitution. The life of O'Connell was devoted to the undoing of this

evil. The life of Chalmers to the preparation of men to undo that and similar wrongs. O'Connell' made politics a profession. Chalmers influenced them without design or concurrence. Like all living men of threescore and ten years, they have witnessed changes amounting to revolution. With their youth is associated the remembrance of the American War and the French Revolution; with their manhood the great European War and the overthrow of Napoleon; with their maturer years those peaceful triumphs which have changed the surface of society, and in which they bore a conspicuous part. The services of both in the cause of freedom have been invaluable. Chalmers was not a politician in the party sense of the name. For no inconsiderable period of his life he leaned to Conservatism, because, like many good and sanguine men, he was cheated by the hypocritical professions of religion on which Peel founded his party. He had no personal purpose to serve in his political attachments. No man's conservatism was of a more generous nature. He had formed in his mind a splendid theory of life and living; and he expected its reduction to practice. Beautiful was that vision, as it appeared to the minds of others—beautiful beyond description, as the walls and turrets of the fabric were gradually unfolded to his own view. It resuscitated the old idea of a religious sovereign, peerage, and people, virtually covenanted together to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with their God. It comprehended a thoroughly religious people an intelligent peasantry, saving money—a well educated "artizanism," becoming rich; the first gradually merging into farmers, and the second into traders. It had a middle class, acting always under the highest and strongest guiding and restraining influence. It was coronated by an aristocracy dispensing clerical patronage on religious principles; for it is a strange fact, that Dr. Chalmers first intended to remedy the evils of patronage by converting the patrons, and thus ensuring their appointment of religious men. The fact indicates the progressive character of Dr. Chalmers' mind, ever moving towards truth. In after years he would have told a converted! patron, that he must resign a privilege which no religious man could exercise amongst his brethren. He would have told the noblest and the richest man in his communion that there the peasant and the peer were equal; and that in no manner could distinctions of worldly grandeur be recognized in spiritualities. Dr. Chalmers, though he reared splendid visions, was no mere idle dreamer; He hoped, but how he wrought! If his imagination sometimes over-reached the sobrieties of severe reasoning, it never touched except to excite his wonderful energy.

We remember one morning in May-now five years ago. The light of dawn was struggling with the light of gas in a crowded church of Edinburgh for pre-eminence. For many hours an anxious debate had been continued there. The subject was painful-the interest was intense— the stake was large. The issue was to try not the weight of a party, but the stability of an es

box in haste. Their verdict was mentioned, but twelve had struck on some of the church clocks. The verdict, like Ireland often, was too late by the minutest portion of time-the smallest space by which it could be behind. The verdict was hostile. Its effects are remembered. He overcame it-we doubt if he ever overcame them; for he felt convinced that he had become connected with indiscreet men, for whose sayings he might be held responsible; and yet he could not dissolve and reconstruct the body which he ruled.

tablishment. The actors and the audience were | for twenty-four hours. The Jury came into the both nervous for the result. That nervousness was increased by the period to which they had watched and waited-until, from the high windows, there came down a tinge of dawn, waxing | every second stronger and stronger, until it had softened down the brilliancy of the gas flame to a cold and chill "grey" light, between the night and morn. Dr. Chalmers had been weak, and unable to attend the discussion; but he entered, and in a few emphatic sentences, moved the deposition of some ministers. He knew the consequence. He felt that this deposition would prove to be the severance of the ties between his friends and the Church-it destroyed all the hopes, and neutralised all the labours of years-it left him in old age to begin the world anew, so far as all his projects for public teaching were concerned it divided him from an institution which he venerated, which he adorned, to which he clung | with more than earthly love. This was the crisis of his history.

There was no remarkable difference at these periods between the ages of O'Connell and Chalmers. The first was seemingly victorious: the second was apparently defeated. The first was dealing with a political, and the second with a religious cause. But the political society bore on religion, and the religious body influenced politics. Cheerfully and hopefully Thomas Chalmers set himself again to work. He devised, he counselled, he struggled with difficulties, and surmounted them all. In a wonderfully short time, he had

former labours-his churches his schools—his
libraries—his entire mechanism had gone from
him; all was lost except the good spirit and the
earnest men who had rallied round him, and
whom he had trained and taught. It does not
seem to have so fared with O'Connell's projects.
They have not flourished since in anything like their
former power and strength. His influence seems to
have faded. The famine came and struck it down.
The same famine found Chalmers writing essays
on the means of checking its power, and transform-
ing its evils into benefits. It found him practi-
cally working against its immediate results;
vising subscriptions to feed the hungry; and,
while doing good, at the same time converting
this judgment into a testimony of the
the zeal of his communion.

Eighteen months later we were in a crowded court of Dublin, and few places are more inconvenient for a crowd than law-courts in general-formed a new edifice on new principles. All his those of Dublin are not exceptional to the rule. A trial for misdemeanour-an extraordinary trial, on which the attention of the empire was fixed-had run its weary length of many days. The principal man among the accused-the leading man of Ireland-was to plead his own cause. The eloquence of professional advocates was exhausted in favour of other clients. And now the man against whom the case was levelled at the bar of his country-before one of its juries-under the influence of adverse and party feelings was to defend his character and his obedience to the law from official charges. There was not a whisper in that Court. Word by word the elaborate defence was listened to. Sentence after sentence was heard, in anxious expectation of such withering eloquence as rung on Tara's hill, and Mallow's plains. The expectation was disappointed. The address was skilfully formed, so as to combine the subtleties of a profound lawyer with the simplicities of an ag-want-the disease the deserted cottages, and grieved yeoman, who preferred to make his own defence. But there was no excitement. The defence was cold and unenergetic. That was his crisis.

A few evenings later - the next Saturday night a vast crowd were congregated on the quays of the Liffey-in the outer hall of the Four Courts, a perfect mob of barristers were assembled, speculating and betting on the verdict. Within the courts, the stifling and crowding was seriously sickening. Two or three wretched candles, on a table before the bench, made darkness barely visible. For hours, the harrowing suspense had lasted. For hours, the steam had been up and ready and blowing off from the steamer at Kingston quay that was to carry to England the verdict of the Jury. At last, the minute-hands of many watches were overlooked, and their owners examined the "seconds," for it was almost midnight, and no verdict could be returned after that




No man can doubt the anxiety of O'Connell on this subject. It paralysed him. The crisis was too dreadful for his exhausted powers. The

crowded grave-yards of Ireland in 1847 overstrained his means of resistance to calamity, and he perished in grief and sadness.

Religious influences are the bones and sinews of the mind. Few great things have been done without them. Our earnest and useful workers have all been full of faith. influence on the subtle sands of time, and write Men who stamp their their names so deeply there for good that all the been fervent believers. The faith of Chalmers waves of years obliterate them not, have ever taught him the urgent necessity of self-exertion and self-reliance as a means-and he nobly acted out the principle. The implicit belief in the judgment of other men, required of and freely tendered by O'Connell, had a different influence; and, to us at least, the circumstance furnishes some partial and faint explanation of the different degrees of success that attended their battles with adversity. The moral influence of both was great. O'Con

nell wielded immediately the minds of the greatest number. The influence of Chalmers was exerted over a more educated class. It may be doubted whether, during the later years of his life, O'Connell's power extended far out of his own party -if five or six millions of people can with propriety be designated a party. The influence of Chalmers was not so exclusively Scottish or sectarian. If it was not the property of a sect, neither was it the heritage of a country. There is a great error committed by those who suppose that O'Connell agitated Ireland. He was an agitator, but he found his country agitated. He entered public life at the period of an armed rebellion-he had to contend with its dregs. Secret associations covered the country-midnight murder was a common offence in the land-armed bodies executed the sentence of secret tribunals. The wild justice of revenge was the rule of the west. The Lynch law of the States was systema- | tically administered in Ireland. Against this state of insubordination he struggled vehemently. His efforts and eloquence for half a lifetime were directed against it. He brought the people out into open action. He denounced all secret societies, even those of an apparently harmless, and those, also, of an apparently beneficent, character. To give consistency to this movement, he abandoned and even assailed "Free Masonism." No man ever did more in Ireland to fix the brand of abhorrence on all secret institutions.

His voice was raised against violence. He taught that no reform was worth the shedding of blood. He even seemed to place on life what some might call an extravagant value. From addresses made to great bodies, at periods of excitement, it would not be difficult to select expressions and sentences of a different and of an unjustifiable character; but we have to judge the man by his whole acts, and they were pacific.


Murder is said still to be a common crime in Ireland. In one way the statement is true. The actual crime exists; and immediately to the doer, and the victim, and the public, it is immaterial how the crime originates. In tracing guilt, however, we must come to its causes, and the causes of Irish crime are principally agrarian." The proposals that O'Connell advocated; plain plans of justice, not less sought by Roman Catholics than Protestants, would have removed these causes; and we must not blame a man's schemes for not rooting out an evil until they be adopted.

O'Connell himself has been accused of cowardice in his latter years. This was an obvious error. He had taken life in single combat. There was blood upon his hand, and it went with him to Genoa.

there are many generous acts yet to be told of this singular man.


The influence of Dr. Chalmers was of a thoroughly different and more permanent character. The one moved society-the other re-constructed it. The one fought nobly on the surface-the other sought to the heart. The eloquence of the onewas mingled with many rough passages, that of the other was pure. The theme of the one was the world principally; chiefly, the other moulded the world by pointing to eternity. one wrought incessantly, but forgot to teach successors; the other laboured vigorously, but went on preparing hundreds, on most of whom a shred, though on many a small shred of his mantle was to fall. Some danger exists that the work of the one will perish at his grave; that of the other, even reckoning on the lowest reasoning alone, is secured. They lived in a changing age, and were the instruments of urging forward many of its changes. The success of the Politician is recorded in Hansard. Its monuments are Acts of Parliament. These statutes, however, reached not to the deep places of society. They went no lower than ten-pound voters. They were not shafts sunk into the mass of evil that covers over Ireland- The success therefore was incomplete.

He, however, taught his people to think and act together. Whether his lessons were attended with permanent results has yet to be learned. The first election will give us facts on this subject. But he taught them, at least, the power that they seem already to forget the power of union; and he urged social changes that will yet be adopted, and credited to other men.

The efforts of the Theologian were directed to change men. He regarded their existing position in society as a minor matter. He felt that as their thoughts changed so would their position. He struggled after the major good, with the knowledge that within it the minor was included. His combinations were, therefore, less remarkable for numbers, or for immediate and apparent power. They wrought more slowly and gradually, because he did not so much move the world, as he moved men out of its beaten tracks. He contested no elections. He issued few political letters. He seemed to rise over all these things. But he was the means of urging forward rapidly new currents of thought. Amidst all difficulties he still saw that his system moved; so he was full of hope and of cheerfulness to the end.

The experiments conducted simultaneously by these men, with a combination of the highest powers-with consummate tact-with unwearied But a very indifferent judge of men re-energy, and running over half a century, leaves quired only to see the man, and pronounce the on the most unimpassioned mind, in letters deeply charge of cowardice utterly false. Then he was graven, this one fact, that, in liberating a people accused of avarice and trading in politics. He from outward thraldom, the best progress will be loved influence and power. Amongst his coun-made by breaking the inner bonds, and setting trymen, an ostentatious display, an overflowing the spirit free-by doing in the heart and the hospitality, and an open house, were necessaries house, what we want done in the senate and the of his political existence. But he died poor; and




A MILD evening air rose from the waves that wash the shores of Malaga, awakening the guitars of many merry musicians, who either whiled away a lonesome hour in the ships that lay at anchor in the harbour, or who chanced to be in some suburban villa with its beauteous gardens. Their melodies, vying with the tunes of the feathered songsters of the grove, seemed to greet the return of evening's refreshing coolness, and were wafted, as it were, on the wings of the gentle zephyrs that breathed from ocean over the adjacent paradise. Some groups of soldiers reclining on the beach, and who intended to pass the night under the canopy of heaven, that they❘ might be ready to embark at earliest dawn of day, forgot, through the charms of the pleasant evening, their former resolve to devote these last hours, which were to be spent on European soil, to the comfortable enjoyment of refreshing slumber. This purpose had, however, given way to jovial carousings; the scene assumed the appearance of a military mess; soldier-songs were sung; flasks containing generous Xeres-wine were opened and quickly emptied; whilst the air rang with the "Vivats" occasioned by drinking the health of the great military toast of the day, the Emperor Charles V., who at this moment was besieging that pirate's nest, Tunis-and whom these soldiers were destined to join as a reinforcement.

The merry troops were not all countrymen. Only two companies were Spaniards; the third consisted entirely of Germans; and doubtless many squabbles had arisen on account of the difference of customs and idiom. But now the common dangers of their approaching voyage and exploits, as also the pleasurable sensations produced by the mild southern evening, served to tighten the bond of fellowship among them in free undisturbed concord. The Germans tried to converse in the Castilian idiom, the Spaniards in German, nor did it occur to either the one or the other to ridicule the oddities of speech which now and then were heard in the community. They mutually assisted each other; considering only the pleasure of the companion addressed, the speakers used the idiom most familiar to their respective hearers.

At some little distance from the boisterous group, a young German officer, Heimbert von Waldhausen by name, lay reclining under a cork-tree, gazing at the stars with fixed look, and thus apparently quite estranged from that spirit of social hilarity which was wont to characterise him, and render him a favourite among his comrades. Don Fadrique Mendez, a brave young Spanish captain, and usually as grave and thoughtful as the other was cheerful and affable, solemnly accosted him in the following manner.

"Pardon me, senor, if I disturb your meditations. Since, however, I have frequently had the pleasure of witnessing your heroism and brotherly attachment in many an hour of need, I address myself to you in preference to any one else, for the purpose of requesting the assistance of your knightly service this evening, provided that this does not interfere with your own arrangements."

"Dear Friend," replied Heimbert, "I will not conceal

from you the fact that I have some important matters to transact ere sunrise, but till midnight I am disengaged, and entirely at your service."

"That suffices," said Fadrique; "for by midnight all the tones must be hushed, with which I intend to take leave of what is dearest to me in this my native place. But that you may be so acquainted with all the particulars as beseems a generous comrade, listen to me attentively for a few short minutes :

"Some time before leaving Malaga for the purpose of joining myself to the standard of our great Emperor, in order to assist in spreading the glory of his arms throughout Italy, I, according to the custom of young knights, was in the service of a beautiful young Lady of this town, called Lucilla. She had at that time barely arrived at the threshold which separates childhood from maidenhood; and whilst I, a mere boy, just capable of handling a sword, presented my homage in a friendly, boyish manner, it was received by my young mistress in a way equally friendly and childlike. I soon after took my departure for Italy, and, as you who have since then been my companion in arms well know, have been at some warm engagements, and travelled over many an enchanting corner of that delightful country. Amid all the shiftings and changes of my course, I always had the image of my mistress deeply imprinted on my memory, and never, for a moment, lost sight of the promises I made her at departure; though, to tell the honest truth, I was actuated by a feeling of honour, inasmuch as I had pledged my word, rather than by any very ardent or immoderate glow of feelings in my heart. On recently returning to my native town, after having wandered, Ulysses-like, through so many strange and various regions, I found my mistress married to a rich nobleman here. Love now yielded to maddening jealousy-this all but omnipotent child of Heaven, or of the infernal regions, spurred me on to track Lucilla in all her walks: from her home to church, from thence to the door of any of her friends, thence again to her home, or to a circle of ladies and knights-in short, as indefatigably as opportunity would possibly permit. When, however, I became convinced that no other young knight was in her train, and that she had devoted all the affections of her heart to the husband, not of her choice indeed, but that of her parents, I was perfectly satisfied, and would not have importuned you now, had not Lucilla whispered into my ear, the day before yesterday, imploring me not to provoke her lord, who was of a very irascible as well as bold temper; that although not the least danger could ensue to her, whom he fondly loved and honoured, yet his rage would burst forth the more furiously

on me.

Thus you may easily perceive, noble brother, that I could not avoid proving my utter contempt of all personal danger, by following Lucilla's footsteps still more closely than before; and by serenading her each night under her flowery lattice, until the morning star began to make ocean's waves his mirror. This very night, at the hour of twelve, Lucilla's husband journeys to Madrid, after which time I purpose entirely to avoid the street in which he lives; till then, however, I shall commence, as soon

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