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beauty and the usefulness, the abundance and cheapness of all manufactured articles seemed overpaid a thousand fold by the cost to the moral nature of whole classes which the system seemed necessarily to involve.

Great was our comfort upon finding how different was the bodily and mental condition of the youth in our factories from that of the overworked and underfed operatives in Europe ; greater was our joy at learning how much the tidiness, the comfort, the enjoyment, the virtues even of the operatives were owing to the humanity and the care of their employers. Verily they deserve much and they get much ; - far more than the increased profit derived from virtuous and intelligent agents; they get the satisfaction of believing they are doing good unto others while they are increasing their own stores. All honor to them for their motives; all credit to them for their partial success.

Thus much for apology — now for the explanation. The system is as bad here as it is abroad; the tendencies are the same; and the results are only less evil because of the character of the persons who started the enterprise, and the character of the workmen whom they were able to enlist. The upas tree planted in a virgin soil, and carefully watched, seems, as yet, fair to the eye, but the poison is still in its sap.

We bold that the existence in any community of a working class, a class whose sole business is to do all the manual labor of society, - a class who must of necessity spend so much time in hewing wood and drawing water for those who will do neither, that none is left for the culture and exercise of their truly human nature, and for the development of their affections, tastes, and sentiments, — the existence of such a class is a great wrong and a crying sin.

He who, having already enough and to spare, exempts himself and his household from all manual labor whatever, and, in order to increase his store, employs his capital in the system of competition, and keeps hundreds of his fellow-men so bard at work from the rising to the setting sun that they cannot have a tithe or a hundredth of the mental culture which he prizes above all things for his own children, — he who does this, be whatever else he may, is not a Christian - loves not his neighbour as him. self — does not as he would be done by.

All the talk about the employer working as hard as the laborers is worse than twaddle. He works with his brain, does he? he has care, anxiety, forecast ? Yes! truly, and too much of it! He

may indeed be as tired as his workmen, because they have both worked awry, and both pay the penalty, one by an infirm body, the other by an infirm mind, and society is all out of joint in consequence. The master should have a little bodily toil, the workmen a little mental exercise, and the wear and tear to


mind and body would be less. As for the supposed necessity of division of labor, the one taking all the head work and no hand work, the other all hand work and no head work, it is entirely assumed ; there is no authority for it in the constitution of man. Even if there were nothing to do in this world but to make material gain, the increased intelligence and virtue of workmen would more than counteract the withdrawal of part of the mental energy of the employer. Besides, with a fair share of hand work, the amount of head work that can be done is always greater.

There is a certain amount of hand work to be done in society, and if it were fairly distributed among all the members all would be healthier, happier, and richer. Until there is greater equality in this distribution there will be no peace on earth, that is certain. Every man who is doomed by necessity to labor at hard hand work the livelong day and every day, suffers a grierous and

- a wrong by that which he is made to do, and a wrong by that which he is prevented from doing. Every man who, io increase what is a sufficiency, so employs others, inflicts upon his brother a wrong — does not as he would be done by. Now it will be seen by this, that we mean that not only the rich manufacturer, but every one who needlessly makes others drudge their lives out upon scanty wages, does not live up to the doctrines of Christianity. We, all of us, all who are employers, are apt to

double wrong,

sin this way.

This leads us to notice another complaint about what we said in our last respecting domestic servitude.

Perbaps we described extreme cases, perhaps we dealt too much in generalities, and did not make allowance enough for the many kind and generous employers. But extreme cases illustrate the tendencies of the system, and though we are inclind to think that a pretty large class of employers are not open to the charge of heartlessness in the treatment of their domestics, further reflection convinces us that there is too much ground for our remarks.

If we look at the condition and relation of masters and mistresses and servants in what may be called two extremes of society in the North, it will appear that the term “ domestic servitude" is a fitting one, and that the picture we drew of it is not too high colored. We mean those who have attained to what they consider the summit of fashion and social grandeur, and those who are just emerged from the condition of hand laborers themselves and have a hand laborer or two under them.

Catch, as by a daguerreotype, a view of one of each class. See an ultra fashionable lady, kneeling upon a velvet cushion in an ultra fashionable church, or pai taking the holy sacrament of Hin who washed his disciples' feet, where are her servants ?beside her, or in the gallery even ? No! the cook is at home preparing a luxurious dinner ; the coachman, and the footman too, it may be, are waiting in the street, waiting by the hour, in sunshine or storm, though the distance from home be but a furlong or two. Now look at that coachman or footman, and see peeping out in his dress the unchristian attempt to introduce into this land the cast-off trumpery of an old aristocracy ; to mark and degrade the man as a menial, a serving man, by putting upon him a livery! It is true that only a few brainless asses or selfish egoists are thus sowing the wind for their children to reap the whirlwind, but those few are in a position, in some of our cities, to make weak people wish to imitate even their follies and sins.

Take, in the other extreme, the keeper of a small house, it may be a boarding house, for instance. Look at the lot of her woman of all work ; see her toil and sweat, early and late, week in and week out; poorly fed ; hardly lodged ; miserably paid; as poor in purse at the end of the ten years of toil which have broken down her once vigorous frame as she was at the beginning of them ;- remember that there are thousands and thousands of such, and say, were we wrong in asserting that domestic servitude exists among us in a dreadful form?


1.- A Plea for Peasant Proprietors, fc. By Wm. THOMAS

THORNTON. London: J. Murray. 1848.

This is a good book, so far as it goes, upon a great question, written by a man of clear sight and right purpose, but of faint heart.

The subject is, the distribution of the face of the earth among the children of men, to whom God gave it to possess; and the time id and winding way in which the author approaches it, shows his lack of courage to grapple with the great wrong which prevails in all civilized countries. The very title contains matter for a sermon. "A PLEA!” that is, a pleading, an apology ; -- and for what? --- for the right of the sons of God to possess, during their lives, enough of the surface of the earth to till and live upon ; and for their right to their share in “the dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” A PLEA! and for whom? - for the PEASANTS, the laborers, that is; not men wholly and entirely, but only a plebes rustica, whose business it is to hew the wood and draw the water of society; men set apart and appointed to do those things which the true homo, the gentle man, does not deign to do.

Looked upon from the highest stand point of humanity, regarded as a question of pure right and wrong, the subject matter of this book is not worth a moment's notice. There should be no plea for peasant proprietors, but a stern demand for the rights of man wherever, as in Ireland, for instance, they have been manifestly and grossly violated, and where men lie down and starve to death upon the bosom of that earth which is full of nourishment for them, if other men, full to fatness, would only let them draw that nourishment freely. We should not, in such extremities, stand hesitating about disturbing “vested rights,” but maintain the prior right of humanity, vested in man at the creation ; we should not bow reverently before a criminal institution because it is old, but denounce it as more wicked in proportion to the length of day that it has cumbered the earth and oppressed the race.

But this may not do, some will say; and Mr. Thornton is perhaps right after all. Nothing is done in nature by starts ; there is a vis inertie which must be respected, even in a criminal institution. We must hit it gently at first, not break our heads against it ; we must push steadily, until we get it fairly into motion, when we may knock and kick it down to perdition with all our might and main.

The author begins his plea by striving to show that small farms may be made more prodluctive in proportion to their size than large ones; and this he does, we think even to the satisfaction of those matter-of-fact souls who will not esteem any thing as valuable products of agriculture except material and tangible corn and potatoes; who look into the barn and the cellar to count the gain of the peasant laborer ; and who consider that by bread alone a man liveth. To such persons the attempt to show that men of any knowledge, working for themselves and their children upon their own little garden will make the aggregate material products of those gardens greater than they would if working as hirelings upon the grounds of a taskmaster, is very well ; though to others it may seem like proving that three and two are more than two and two.

His chapter upon the effects of peasant proprietorship in France is very interesting; and his comparison of the condition of the agricultural class in the Channel Islands with that of the same class in England, Ireland, and Scotland, is most striking. Indeed, it would be conclusive of the whole argument if

one could draw any certain conclusions upon these subjects from facts now or heretofore existing. The truth is, in the solution of a question of this kind, we must go back to first principles, because in no country are the people in such a condition as to show fairly what would be the result of giving to every head of a family his own vine and his own fig-tree. Most of the facts and circumstances which have been brought forward as arguments against the policy NO. IV.



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of having a country divided into small farms, grow out of the ignorance of small farmers. When you remove this ignorance you remove the whole evil; and until you do remove it you will have the world bearing, as it does now, more of tares than wheat, more of hate tban love, more of strife than mutual help. But surely the way to remove it is not to disfranchise men socially ; to make of them tenants at will — hired laborers hewers of wood and drawers of water.

That condition of life is best for man (for the whole nature of man,) which calls into action the greatest variety of faculties, affections, and sentiments that may be consistent with obtaining sufficiency of food and raiment; and that condition is worst for men which narrows down the exercise of their nature to a single point, and keeps them grinding needles, or sticking handles on to teacups, or hoeing corn, all their lives.

He who takes from grown men all care and forethought, all cause of anxiety and responsibility, who feeds them, clothes them, houses them, and provides them with every thing they wish, requiring only in return that they work on thoughtlessly under his sole guidance, robs them of their birthright, dwarfs their natures, and makes of them slaves.

What said Jesus about him who went and buried his talent in a napkin? How much more indignantly would he condemn to outer darkness those who strive to wrap in napkins, to bury in the earth, to stile and destroy, all the talent, all the energy, all the ambition, and all the emulation of whole classes of men ?

In our view those European statesmen who, looking with single eye to the material productiveness of the earth, strive to centralize farming, to create great proprietors, and to keep the workmen in the condition of thoughtless, careless, and irresponsible hired laborers, differ only in degree, not in kind, from those who strive to perpetuate the doomed institution of negro slavery in our own land.

Where was the spiritual adviser of the Duchess of Sutherland when her legal adviser told her she might drive away thousands of small farmers from her broad lands, and cover them with flocks and herds whom a few stupid shepherds, their talents buried in napkins, could watch? Why did he not open to her Grace the laws of God, written everlastingly in man's nature, while the lawyer opened the laws of the land, written on paper that perisheth? Why did he not oppose to Blackstone, Christ; and to Political Economy, Christian Charity ?

But the thought of the absolute necessity which man has for the whips and spurs of care, forethought, anxiety, and even necessity, in order to develop his nature and his capacities, and the peculiar fitness of agriculture, — of the ownership of a little land, to furnish all these, and likewise the poble spiritual harvest which follows them, — the thought of these things, we say, would

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