Puslapio vaizdai

low because you are unable or unwilling to cultivate it. What we demand now is, the maximum of production from the British soil. If you can furnish that, you may and will remain. If not, neither we, nor the laws of political economy, which are older, stronger, than either you or we, will tolerate you. You must and will give place to those who can do that for which you assert your own incapacity. Who they will be, or how they will do it, we care comparatively little. We have faith in God, faith in the soil, His priceless gift; faith in science, which is His revelation; faith in the consequences of the just and righteous act of freetrade, which was His inspiration ; and though you may deride us as unpractical enthusiasts, we will not shrink from believing where we do not see, and expecting that the future of agriculture will be profitable to the consumer, profitable to the producer, profitable to the working masses, and that hereafter, as heretofore, the everlasting law will be fulfilled, “He that tilleth his land shall be satisfied with bread, but he that followeth after vain persons shall have poverty enough. ””

But, indeed, the horoscope of the agricultural classes is by no means so difficult to cast. In the first place, if the poorer lands shall, as Professor Low expects, “ go out of cultivation,” i.e. out of tenant farmers' hands, their place may be at once supplied, with no diminution of rent, and a considerably increased produce, by peasant proprietors, or by what would perhaps be better in the present state of the agricultural classes, cottier tenants on long leases, binding them to methods of high cultivation. The prejudices of political economists against la petite culturehave been modified of late, by the facts in its favour proved by Mr. Laing's book on Norway, Mr. Blacker's and the Hon. J. Hewitt's success in Ireland, the late Mrs. Davies Gilbert's experiments in Sussex and elsewhere, and a mass of other evidence, which has so far convinced Mr. Mill

, the best political economist of the day, as to cause him to give in his adhesion to the party who advocate “ la petite culture.” No doubt on this system a greater amount of produce is attained, combined with habits of thrift, relf-restraint, and independence in the cultivators, to which our labouring classes are now, alas ! rapidly becoming strangers : but it has its drawbacks, nevertheless ; it is an isolating, and therefore a stationary, if not a barbarizing system of society; it affords but very small opportunities for employing the strength of combination, for investing large capitals in public works and widely spread improvements; it cannot be the ideal goal of a nation which, like Great Britain, has proved by experiment the enormous powers of union and co-operation. In peculiar localities, such as barren moorlands or rocky glens unfit for the plough, it may be profitably employed ; but the majority of British

Possible Methods of Cultivation.


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soils must and will continue to be cultivated by la grande culture," or some method which shall unite its advantages with that of garden farming. And there is no risk but that the large farm system will still be carried on, whether“ profitably” or not. If, as Professor Low sneeringly intimates, there will soon be plenty of opportunities for gentlemen amateurs to farm their own estates, all that can be said is, that it is summation devoutly to be wished.” Even if they lose money, as they very likely will, by attempting to imitate Mr. Huxtable, the land will be permanently improved, the produce increased, the labourers' wages, dwellings, civilisation, bettered. Whether or not Mr. Fowler's magnificent improvements on Dartmoor pay him or not, the thing is done,it is a krñua és úe—a present to his country of so much skill, labour, cultivation ; and the mind must be sadly warped which can find, as some do, in such an action a reason for contempt. But farther, why may not the joint-stock company principle be applied to farms as well as to railroads? Why may not a board of directors, by means of their skilled servants, cultivate vast sheets of country with a skill, an energy, a largeness of design as yet unknown? “What will Cockney directors know about farming ?" Why, what did they know about railroads ? Are railroad directors engineers and surveyors ? No, they are simply men of capital and men of business, who have the happy power, as yet unknown to most farmers, of recognising the men of really practical science, and setting them to work—as they did Stephenson and Brunel-as they will hereafter some of the very men whom Professor Low holds up to the ridicule of ignorant and conceited boors. A war, or some other cause, may check foreign investments; profits, according to their law of tendency towards a minimum, may and will temporarily sink so low as to make the chance of profit by land-investments worth consideration ; and we may see, perhaps in the course of a very few years, large joint-stock capitals poured out upon the half-tilled lands of Britain, to the immense improvement both of culture and cultivators. Doubtless, there will be hasty speculations, failures, losses ; but the money will be there—so much surplus capital locked up -surely in a better place than if it were with the last surpluses, in repudiated loans and trainless railroads.

But even thus the ideal object of scientific agriculture, the maximum of production, would not be as certainly reached as by “ la petite culture of Belgium and Lombardy. Why, then, may not the experiment be made to combine the two, by means of associate labour, in which every individual employed on a farm, from the mere paid worker to the capitalist, should receive his proportion of the profits, the muscle of the labourer

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and the skill of the scientific man being credited to them, as they easily may be, as so much capital?

Mr. John Stuart Mill, in his chapters on the probable futurity of the labouring classes, which we would gladly notice more at length did space allow, points to some such arrangement as the certain goal of modern industrial society.* It is at least a question deserving careful consideration, whether the benefits of à plan which has been found already successful in the Cornish mines and fisheries, and in various handicrafts both in London and Paris, may not also be extended to agriculture. Why should not, hereafter, a whole parish, for example, be cultivated by one large associate corporation, in which all the civilizing appliances of the model lodging-houses might be combined, without the least intrusion on family independence, with the economy of a common kitchen, washhouses, stores, school, and librarywhy not a common place of worship also? The government of such a corporation, even if every member possessed votes in proportion to his capital, would always remain in the hands of the most wealthy and skilful, while the very poorest would acquire selfrespect, independence, self-restraint, chivalrous and self-sacrificing diligence, under the ennobling consciousness of corporate life and permanent interest, and under the wholesome pressure of the public opinion of the community. The division of labour might be carried out to an extent as yet unknown in agriculture, and yet combined with a civilizing variety of occupation. The sales and purchases of the establishment might be conducted by a single salesman, who could visit markets now inaccessible to most farmers, with an enormous saving of that time, trouble, and horse expenses which are now wasted in market journeys by isolated farmers. At the same time, it is by no means necessary that the whole population of such an establishment should be devoted to agriculture. On the contrary, the maximum of sewage-manure being the condition of fertility, it would be advantageous to admit a proportion of artizans, who might send their goods up to the metropolis, as the watch-makers of Penzance do now, and while sharing in the blessings of country

* “ The value of this organization of industry,'” he remarks, in summing up his important discussions on this subject, “ for healing the widening and embittering feud between the class of labourers and the class of capitalists, must, I think, impress itself by degrees on all who habitually reflect on the condition and tendencies of modern society.

Although, therefore, arrangements of this sort are now in their infancy, their multiplication and growth, when once they enter into the general domain of popular discussion, are among the things which may most confidently be expected.”

Miss Martineau also, in a letter to the Leader newspaper, advocates experiments of the kind to which we refer, and which are so important in the adjustment of the labour question,

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life, be themselves a benefit to the soil. If the materials of manufacture, such as tobacco, silk, or flax, were grown on the farm, the amount of capital combined would allow of machinery being erected to work them up. The machinery need never be idle; whether steam or water-power, there would be always employment for it in grinding corn, in scutching flax, or in pumping sewage-manure; and thus the enormous waterpower of our moors might be made the very agent of their cultivation, manufacture and agriculture might be combined in the same community, and the civilisation of Manchester spread the energy which it possesses, and receive the health it wants, amid the wasted solitudes of the Yorkshire hills.

This is but an ideal ; imperfect, distant, perhaps impossible; yet the increasing number of authoritative names which sanction such experiments, affords at least a fair ground of hope to any wise and benevolent capitalists who may be inclined cautiously to attempt, step by step, the realization of these or analogous agricultural reforms.

And if this be not the ideal future agriculture of the world, still an ideal there is, to be revealed and realized in God's good time. Man stands upon the earth to replenish and subdue it; to conquer the brute phenomena of nature by obedience to her laws; and the same God who has given him that mission, has promised him, in a hundred passages of holy writ, that he shall be enabled to fulfil it; that the days shall come, when the poor shall eat and be satisfied ;" when there shall be an heap of corn high on the mountain tops, and the city shall be as green as grass on the earth."

Art. V.-1. Le Synode Réformé de 1848, par deux témoins.

Histoire Critique par MM. E. de Presensé et L. Pilatte.

Paris : 1848. 2. Les Sentiers des Siècles passés. Discours Synodal, par Fré

déric Monod, Pasteur. Paris : 1848. 3. Les Archives du Christianisme. (French Religious Journal.)

Paris : 1848-49. 4. Le Lien. (French Religious Journal.) Paris : 1848-49. 5. Mes adieux à mon troupeau. Par Frédéric Monod, Pasteur.

Paris : 1849. 6. Pourquoi je demeure dans l'Eglise Etablie. Par Adolphe

Monod, Pasteur, Suffragant de l'Eglise Réformé de Paris.

Paris : 1849. 7. Réponse au brochure de M. Adolphe Monod. Par A. de Gas

parin. Paris : 1849. 8. Addresse aux Membres des Eglises Réformés de France. Par

MM. A. de Gasparin et Frédéric Monod. Paris : 1849. 9. Union des Eglises Evangéliques de France. Paris: 1850. Much as the


of the civilized world have for the last two years and more been directed to the affairs of France, there is one element in the state of that country which, if it has excited the lively interest of a select few, has nevertheless not generally and popularly obtained the notice it deserves. The political and social questions now in course of evolution among our Gallican neighbours have so powerfully occupied the attention of men, that the religious ones, except in so far as these have been necessarily connected with the others, have been comparatively neglected. And yet never since the Reformation have religion and the Christian Church had more at stake in connexion th the affairs of France. A new epoch has begun, of which no one can guess the future history. From France, as a centre, there are morements now in progress, of which no human foresight can say with confidence whether they are likely to issue in a day of immediate and final triumph, or in another period of confusion and reverse to the interests of Christian civilisation.

But in proportion as we cannot scan the future, we ought to watch the present. This at least is in our power. Whatever affects the Church in France must affect the universal Christian Church, and in a special manner the Churches of Great Britain. It is in the desire of promoting a sympathy among all interested in current ecclesiastical history, that we propose to present in the following paper a brief summary of certain circumstances in the

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