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The house of Hanover never roused the other greatest arts; but in that passion to any individual this she has ever held an unconforce until it came to flower in tested place, as high as the highest, Victoria, in a moment not fav- needing no excuse on the ground ourable to royalty, when senti- that she is only a woman. And ment had abandoned the throne, to make up for the defects of and kings counted for little in nature in the other branches of the history of the world. Kings pre-eminence, we may add that in everywhere are a very different this she has a something more, a class now from what they were visionary addition of power, insixty years since. The Queen effable, not to be measured by has bad no doubt her share even ordinary standards. The tié is in that general enhancement of her warmer, softer, between her and office which has taken place over her peoples than ever is woven bethe world ; but in her own sphere tween man and man. When she there is no factor so great in the is the Friend of the whole world, unity which binds the empire to- she is a nearer Friend, more symgether as it never was bound be- pathetic, more personal. A sense fore. The most distant settlement of Motherhood steals into the of her dominions is proud of her relationship. The Queen is a of her history and her name. The Monarch and more. And Loyalty only Queen! no one to compete has come again into being under with her, no other to approach her band. It has grown with her her pre-eminence; the Mother, unconsciously, without notice, a the Friend, ever watchful, ever Queen's Son, long hidden in the sympathetic, never failing in the obscurity of the pupil state, growtrue word, either for sorrow or ing with the growth and strengthfor joy. We be the sons of one ening with the strength of her man, said the children of Jacob. other sons, her children whom she We are the children of one Mother, has sent out to the ends of the is the meaning of the shout that world. And lo! that which was will go round the earth on the ap- all but non-existent in 1837 is in proaching day of triumph. Few, 1897 a young giant, renewed in very few, among us are more than every faculty, the same poetical, her contemporaries; most of us, magnificent henchman who stood wherever we have been born, in by the Henries in old England, the three home kingdoms, in the Jameses in old Scotland, the Canada, in Australia, in every chivalrous races by whom he was colony, have been born into her cherished, -now coming swift from reign. The first conscious cheer empires of the earth which no of the great majority of her sub- Henry or James ever heard of, jects has been for the Queen, and to stand by the Queen ! to a large proportion of the earth's We have mentioned Australia inhabitants that name must seem by name among our distant brethas if it had endured for ever, never
But Canada should come beginning, never ending, the one first, the oldest, the most faithful. certain symbol of life, patriotism, We remember the time when the and union over land and sea ! bond was very loose indeed which
There is nothing, as is well es- bound that great colony to the tablished in history, that a woman mother country. We talked of it does so well as to reign. It pleases with philosophy, as a thing quite us to say that she lacks genius for likely, neither to be resisted nor VOL. CLXI.-NO. DCCCCLXXIX.
resented, that she should break long ago that we have little reaway. The "temptations to belong membrance and no record of the to other nations," which our witty struggle. Did our painted warriors singer has insisted upon, were affront the Roman arms, something stronger in her case than in any as the Mashona and Matabele have other : and there were already two done, but with so much better nations within herself struggling for augury, as being themselves one of the mastery. There were rebellions, the fortunate races, which no black great enough to warrant that tribe seems to be? When Queen name, and the country was torn Victoria ascended the throne the asunder, two languages, two forms Dark Continent had not even of faith. Had any wise prophets begun to be called the Dark Conspoken—and many did—upon the tinent, so entirely unknown was it : prospects of Canada then, how nothing but an apocryphal chant extraordinary would their predic- of Mungo Park's village women tions sound now !—for these predic- coming out of it, or news, which we tions considered nothing so likely thought apocryphal too, of sources, as dismemberment, disruption, a never discovered, of the Nile. Livdrifting to one side or another, ingstone, the missionary; Speke and a casting off of all effete and use- Grant, the wandering explorers ; less connection with an old-world Baker,—a gradually growing line monarchy scarcely strong enough to of pilgrims revealed to us faintly maintain itself. 'Tis sixty years such a dim world of savagery, so since, and wisdom has turned into hopeless a maze of deadly jungle, folly, as it so often does. There is deadly rivers, marshes, insects, as no Cassandra now that we know of seemed to take all possibility of except perhaps Mr Goldwin Smith, practical advantage to the world out who has played that part so long of it. But the riches hidden in its and cannot drop it easily. And bosom were enough to make every Canada stands first among the danger bearable, and gold and loyal followers and subjects, proud diamonds were more immediately of their allegiance, proud of their tempting than even the thought monarch, who will follow in the of new empires to be formed. Queen's procession. She has What is to come of it all? Will doubled and trebled her wealth, half-a-dozen empires grow, or one, her trade, her inhabitants; but overtopping all others? Will the the greater she has grown individ- wild continent become human, ually, the more faithful has she fished out of the darkness, illubecome amid the august family, minated by modern lights and the loving Servants of the Queen, tracked by modern railways, and
brought under settled laws of order What shall we say of that other and peace ? mysterious continent which is now Meantime the civilised races seething in the primeval pot of have gone down upon the heart history, knowing not what is to and centre of the obstinate land come of it any more than we do which has kept its secrets so who look on? It is the most as- long, like, shall we say, the children tonishing, the most exciting, of all of Israel upon the land of Canaan? sights to see a world, as it were, in The Hebrews out of the desert the making : palpitating at all came in the course of Nature to points, uneasy, struggling into ex- sweep away, or at least to dethrone istence as we all did once, but so from the sovereignty, a race which had not proved worthy of its part to a historical region in which we in the great drama. We have no have no standing-ground and which divine sanctions nowadays, but the has many notable exponents. In precedents of history tend all in Ireland the Protestant Episcopal one way.
The whole continent Church has perished altogether, so trembles, the shadows break up far as its connection with the from every side, the ancient in- State is concerned. In Scotland habitants fight or flee. It is from the national Presbyterian Estabthe abodes of cruelty, the temples lishment has been rent in two. of blood, that they are disturbed; But the Church everywhere being but, notwithstanding, it is the same more venerable than the State, is process which has been carried on subject to revolutions of its own, as long as we know what has hap- which do not work as in the outpened in the world. Already the side world, but roll on in succesQueen's empire has been extended sive waves, altering the exterior indefinitely in a new world, which but never the inner allegiance, was virtually undiscovered when which remains intact through all she began to reign; but what will convulsions. Costumes and cerebe the end of these agitations who monies, organisations and rituals, can tell? When, sixty years hence, wax and wane, but Faith and new chroniclers continue the tale Piety stand fast, we hope and beof what has happened, no doubt lieve, for ever. Any discussion, they will have a story to tell which however, of ecclesiastical matters will excel in wonder, at least so would be quite inappropriate in far as concerns that portion of the our hands. earth's surface, all that has gone But we hope that true religion before. They will look back, and has not suffered either in one kingwonder at the chaos out of which dom or in another; and there can is surging darkly a new Africa. be no doubt that the amount of They will drill their armies and energy and devotion to Christian mint their coin and take their work has by all practical tests inrailway-tickets with amused com- creased. The Churches have more ments upon all that was and to do, and do more, than perhaps was not sixty years since. We they ever have done. We believe may believe we know, but we will we are justified in saying there is not attempt to predict, what that scarcely a slum anywhere, certain
ly not in London, where there is
not a trained and eager band, lay We must now come to a more and clerical, knowing everybody intimate circle, and attempt to and everything, and fighting for all record something of the changes they know, for all they are worth, that have happened in this par- according to the happy slang of ticular home of our own during the the moment, for the help of the Queen's reign. It is too delicate wretched. If charity covereth a a matter to enter at any length multitude of sins, let us rejoice to into the questions of the Church, think that the peccadilloes of the so important, but so intricate and ecclesiastical classes, which they unfit for the touch of a lay hand. have no doubt like other people, What we call the Low Church was are hidden under a glistening then uppermost in England: what mantle of goodwill to men. we call the High Church is domi- As for Education, it may be said nant now. The differences belong that there was none in the be
ginning of the reign. Except in lege of forgetting it as soon as Scotland, where we believe the old learned, of which we cannot desystem of parish schools stood the prive him-privilege of which test as well as its scanty means many take advantage; but except permitted till it was swallowed up in this way the mandate of the in a larger scheme, everything was State cannot be resisted, and
every of the most haphazard description, child must learn something. It was not till the forties (we We have throughout declined think) that there was any system the aid of statistics in a simple of school inspection or organised review of the Queen's reign, which attempt to keep so important a pretends to no scientific accuracy. branch of imperial business under The things which have passed any supervision or control; but the under our own eyes are all that whole Victorian age since then has we have attempted to comment been marked by one continuous upon—and in nothing more than effort after improvement and effici- the facilities of education are these ency in this department. Whether changes to be found. Little dames' the steps taken have been uniformly schools, humble classes in which wise, and the result arrived at all the teacher knew little more than that could be desired, is a very dif- the pupils, every kind of chance ferent matter; but—which is all agency without supervision or that mortal exertions are able to guarantee; a few National Schools, compass—the endeavour has never so called ; some of the British and been dropped, and has come at last Foreign or other Societies of a simito a level never reached before, a lar character; a vast number of most strenuous attempt to teach private adventures, without test or everybody and beat ignorance, the standard,- in these haphazard ways legitimate Ignorance for whichwere English children of the poorer in England at least, most people classes inoculated, forit was scarcely have a sneaking kindness, off from more, with a little vague instrucour shores. No prejudice against tion at the beginning of the reign. education, so far as we know, has Now it is a problem how any child ever existed in Scotland, perhaps can escape from the wide-reaching because the advantages of it have system, or any father or mother, been so forcibly impressed on the except by the most elaborate premind of that poorer country from cautions and an unremitting fight, an early period; but even in this withdraw him from the necessity age of enlightenment there are of learning, or seeming to learn. many in England who hanker after We suppose that if a Duke should the old times in which children make up his mind to bring up his picked up a great deal of know- son in ignorance of the arts of ledge by their five (or was it reading and writing he might sucseven ?) senses, and letters were ceed in his purpose, for the privacy little known. Now, however, the of a ducal household is hard to child, who could contentedly grow break; but it would be difficult up without a notion of his alphabet for any one of less importance to in the early Victorian days, would achieve that feat, except by an have to fight as for his life against amount of clever scheming much all the powers of the law if he out of proportion to the effect to would avoid a certain amount of be attained. instruction now. He has in his This revolution has
gone secure possession the glorious privi- throughout the land into every corner : it is one that has turned the books and stories for the many things upside down, and million is inoral in the highest changed the very lines of being to degree, and nowhere is the villain whole classes of men. No such painted so black as in a penny change accomplishes everything publication—the villain whom that is looked for from it; and we Sadler's Wells, and indeed Drury doubt whether the general level Lane, hiss instinctively from the of intelligence has been as much first moment of his appearance : elevated as it ought to have been : which it may be presumed is acbut we hope it is true that it has cepted by those important memreduced the number of criminals, bers of the theatrical fraternity as though that is a matter of statis- the highest applause. tics of which we cannot help feel- We have already said something ing a deep distrust. One thing is of the extraordinary advance of certain — that new readers have surgical Science in the Victorian called forth a mass of literature age. Not Medicine: we believe so-called, which cannot be in any that the art of curing disease is way considered an advantage either almost as empirical as ever. Its to the language or to the public. methods change from one ten Books by millions, which have no years to another, so that the panright to be called books, and depre- aceas of yesterday are considered ciate instead of elevating the intel- quite untrustworthy, if not dangerlectual taste of the multitude, ous, to-day. And we confess that have come into being. We must, there is something loathsome in as the French say, accept along the newest medicaments of all, with all the virtues les défauts the decoctions made from disdes ses qualités. And this is cer- eased animals, which are supposed tainly a great drawback to the to be about to revolutionise the universal reading and writing which Science. Concerning such cures is now characteristic of our time. we hesitate and doubt in the face But, at the same time, the opening of the most confident asseveraof these gates of knowledge to all tions. The vaccine lymph is difis in itself an enormous thing. ferent. It is no hell's broth of To read alone is of itself to re- corruption and disease. But, forceive a new birthright, to enter tunately, it is not our business to a new world. Even the 'Family give any opinion in such recondite Herald' (we believe a most re- matters. Surgery, however, inspectable publication, though too stead of the beneficent but bloody fond of the aristocracy, like most agent it used to be, the dealer of of its kind) must make an opening dreadful strokes, and wounds worse in the spheres, when bad weather than a battle, has now become, of or bad trade, or sickness leave the all Sciences in the world, the kindtoilers of humble life in languor est, the truest ministrant to the and idleness: and there will always suffering. It is said that it was be some who will rise to better a sudden perception of “the gay things. It is said that foolish motes that people the sunbeams” boys are taught by much of this which suggested to the mind of cheap literature to make a hero Lord Lister-or was it a dreaming of a burglar and emulate him in predecessor ?—the treatment which his adventures. But we put little is called antiseptic, and means the faith in these reports: for it is rigorous shutting out of every poscertain that the tendency of all sible or impossible germ from the