Obrazy na stronie

bility, and Napoleon king of the army, Louis temporaries only knew what a thing was, he Philippe is king of the bourgeoisie. lle is the knew also how it was; he knew the mysteries of king of suburban cits, of discount-agents, of gro- what they knew only the importance. And cers, shoemakers and glovers. What the scep- this is the secret of the influence, which during tre by the grace of God was to Louis the Four- his whole life-time he exercised over them. teenth, what the sword was to Napoleon, that But it is ridiculous to describe him as the the umbrella is to Louis Philippe. The um- modern French oracle, which dictated the course brella! what a charming picture for the bour- of events. It was easy to be an oracle, when geoisie : a king who walks with an umbrella un- every thing was accomplished. It is said that der his arm. That is the right kind of king; a Louis Philippe accepted the crown, only because king who receives ambassadors in his drawers, Talleyrand said " il faut accepter;” but all the who loves the Marseillaise, and walks arm in world knew that he would give this advice, and arm with Laffitte. Let it not be supposed that Louis Philippe knew it better than any one else. I am ridiculing Louis Philippe, on the contrary What did it matter to Talleyrand who ruled I respect him. He did what under the circum- over France ? Marie Louise, the Bourbons, or stances had to be done: he became a citizen- Louis Philippe ; it was all the same to him; he king. This was no trifle, especially as he was was necessary to Robespierre; he was equally the first of the kind, and had no model. He so to Napoleon: he would be so to any one. governs on original principles, while other mon- “ I am a necessity to France,” were his own archs govern by tradition. They rule according words, because he felt that all the world believed to Frederick the Great, or Joseph the Second, it, except himself. What cared be, who was or Henry the Fourth. Louis Philippe rules regent, — the King of Rome, or the Duke of according to himself, and according to circum- Bordeaux ; – he would govern; he would be, as stances; and as soon as he ceases to rule thus, the French say, “ le roi sous cape;" and this he will cease to rule at all. His government is he was able to be, only by cheating the revolua matter of business, and as such he undertook tion. it. Louis Blanc relates that on the road from By the side of Talleyrand we see a man of the Palais Royal to the Hotel de Ville, where whom the reverse is true, and who was himself his dynasty was to receive the sanction of the cheated by the revolution. Lafayette, the hero people, Laffitte said to him, “la chose va bien," and citizen of America, was for a time the most to which he replied, “ elle ne va pas mal;” two popular man in France, or at least in Paris. merchants, conversing upon a speculation which The people honored, the youth loved him. He they had undertaken, could not have spoken of would have been able to accomplish great things, it in a more business-like manner.

if he had possessed more spirit of enterprise ; or, There are three men whose names are con more properly speaking, if he had been more nected with that epoch, of whom we would say ambitious and less virtuous. In bis anxiety not a few words. The first is Talleyrand, a man who to abuse the great influence which he possessed, always excited more interest than he deserved. he preferred not to make use of it at all. InHis talent consisted in taking advantage of the stead of determining the fate of France, he modweaknesses of human nature. “ I vivait,” says estly allowed himself to be pushed aside ; thus Louis Blanc, “ de la bêtise humaine.His he became a tool where he might have been the strength was the unexampled coolness with which creator. " What Lafayette wanted,” says Louis he adapted himself to the existing state of things. Blanc, “was a firm will; he was always too He never took pains to calculate what would timid to guide events, and yet not sufficiently happen; on the contrary he took no interest in abstinent to resign them altogether into other any thing until it existed as a fact. He knew hands. Power charmed, but at the same time nothing of plans, designs, illusions : his mind terrified him ; full of courage, he was yet defiwas too barren to be able to give itself up to cient in daring: the only head which he would dreams and speculations. And because he neve unhesitatingly have consigned to the scaffold, er thought of what would happen, he was never would have been his own." taken by surprise by what did happen; he took Very different was a third conspicuous man things as they came, without having to give up of this epoch, namely, Chateaubriand. This a wish, a hope, or an expectation.

poetical Don Quixote of legitimacy squandered But if he had not the gift of divination for the away firmness of character upon a truly ridicufuture, he had the more for the past; he could lous idea, which unfortunately became a monotrace, as no one else has ever been able to do, mania with him. But this idea has in him someall the slender threads, the poor and frequently thing attractive, because it is contained in the contemptible materials of which great and in- touching and melancholy elements of his poetry. portant fabrics are composed. While his con He feels that the world is not happy, that the

nobility is dishonored, the throne desecrated, most flattering manner. The crowds wbo stood religion despised and freedom lost. In legitimacy around listening to these daring little singers, he seeks the remedy for all this; if legitimacy is clenched their fists, or wiped a tear from their re-established, then all will once more become eyes. As in the middle ages children undertook great and beautiful. Who would grudge a poet a crusade, so now they undertake to oppose the his dream ? And besides, it is of no conse-government. Nor is this the only thing which quence in what the error of Chateaubriand con alarms the king and his ministers. The theatres sists, for Chateaubriand would be in error, even are doing the same thing; I allude especially to if it were not on this point. Legitimacy is acci the new play of “The Rag-gatherer,' by Felix dental with him; if it should be established, the Pyat. It was with reference to this piece that a poet would lament for something else ; lament member of the chamber of peers recently comhe must, for he would still fail to find that plained of the tendency of those dramas, which which he seeks, the happiness and peace of the represent every virtue as to be found only on the world.

side of poverty, and every vice on that of These three persons, Talleyrand, Lafayette, wealth. and Chateaubriand have been here character The Journal des Debats is loud in its lamenized, because in them are represented three ele- tations; all, says the ministerial oryan, is lost ; ments of the French revolutionary epoch, name- order is destroyed; anarchy is raising her bidely, the perfidious, the honest, and the romantic. ous head; we are falling into the abyss of comThey were all three powerful and influential, munism; the ruin of the human race is at hand! and each reader may judge which of the three The occasion for this cry of terror is furnished gained the victory. Recent events will readily neither by the universal corruption which is seen enable him to decide the question ; but there is to exist, nor by the abuse of power, but by the another more difficult of solution; how will banquet at Chateau-Rouge! That is the death it be, when they once more come into con- blow to the human race, the “ tête hideuse de flict?

l'anarchie.Odillon Barrot, Duvergier de

Hauranne, Léon Maleville and fifty-eight of There now reigns a universal discontent; their associates have been so “infamous” workmen are revolting, communists are scatter- be present at a banquet at which the health of ing inflammatory letters, and even children are the king was not one of the toasts ! appearing as the apostles of the revolution. I Guizot as yet stands firm, but there is a ferlately saw a large troupe of them wandering mentation going on in France, the volcano of through the streets by night; they were boys European civilization, which threatens to become and girls, from six to twelve years of age, poor, dangerous to those who are in Paris, the crater miserable things, half-starved and clothed in of that volcano. The disposition of the people rags. Like shadows they flitted through the is daily becoming more unfavorable, poverty moving masses of the Boulevards, stopped in the louder in its demands, and the working classes very thickest of the crowd, and chanted low, bolder and more consistent in their threats. wailing strains of misery. Sighs and tears re We stand perhaps nearer, tban is supposed, to a sounded from their midst, complaints of poverty, great revolution. “ Aujourd'hui des beaux rêves, and curses against wealth. The name of Louis et demain du sang !” as the French play has it. Philippe was likewise heard, and that not in the

- Telegraph.

as to


Whatever strictures may be passed on the of Europe: but by means of its military system policy and tendencies of the Prussian Kings, it has acquired, and seemingly still possesses, a there can be but one opinion with regard to the first-rate influence in European politics. This principles which have always led them in the has always been the case : and though the course general organization of their armies. Prussia is of events sometimes changed the minor features a decidedly military state : the Prussians are a of the system, the fundamental principle has remilitary nation throughout. That country occu- mained unaltered. That principle is the principies a territory of no more than 5000 square ple of intimidation : it is to acquire influence by miles, with a population of less than fourteen means of an imposing attitude, to command remillions. By extent and by the number of its spect on the strength of a numerical superiority. inhabitants it ranks among the second-class states | The Prussian State has always relied on a large

and well-drilled army. It may be said that the fever, loss of hair, inflammation of the eyes, and great problem, “ how to keep the greatest num- consumption decimated the Prussian army in the ber of men for the smallest given sum of money ?” | very midst of peace, and did more execution has been satisfactorily solved by the Kings of that among them, than a batch of battles could have country. The Prussian Kings cannot boast of done. The present King of Prussia seems to any hereditary talent for generalship running in favor the dummy-school less than a certain martheir family. Two of them only, the Great tial appearance, breadth of shoulder and profuElector, and Frederic I., showed themselves sion of beard, which give his soldiers the appearcompetent to the chances of war and the leader-ance of having come back from the middle ages. ship of armies; but a strong talent for Sergeant. It may be said, to his praise, that he invented ship is unquestionably developed in the bumps his clothes first, and next tried them on, to see of all the heads of the family of Hohenzollern. how they would wear. This is more than can The Prussian Kings were always great drill generally be said of the inventors of military masters ; they could at all times defy the whole hats and coats. world on parade; they are capital hands at the We have said before that the Prussians are organization and minor discipline of a regiment essentially a military nation, and it may be right They always delighted in the leadership of a to add, that their kings have made them so. company of the Grenadier Guards. The Princes They came to the throne, and they maintained of that house are soldiers from their very cradle. their possession of it by military force. They The moment a male infant is born, he is enrolled were, for a long time, the kings of their army: on the lists of some regiment; when he can their dominion ended with their outposts. They scarcely walk, he is drilled for the parade. A were soldiers and always wore the uniform. It Prussian Prince is a lieutenant at four, and a was on their army they had to rely: their other colonel at fourteen years of age; and what is subjects could only come into consideration so more, his knowledge of the routine of barrack far as they provided the food and pay of the service at those respective ages is almost equal soldiers. The Prussian kings have proclaimed to that of most lieutenants and colonels in the the principle, and they have acted up to it: that Prussian army. He knows all the rules and reg- the army ranks highest in the kingdom. It ulations of the service, as far as they regard the would be needless to inquire bow far this prindress and appearance of the soldiers ; he has ciple is just and right. It is enough that it been taught to march in the ranks, and to keep served their turn. Military persons were alhis distance to a bair; his eye has been sharpen- ways much more forwarded than civilians. The ed to the finding out of a speck of dust on a military profession was, for a long time, and is, grenadier's musket, or a fusilier's cartridge-box; to a certain extent, even now, the only one by he knows all the signals on the bugle, and talks which a Prussian can obtain a station in the soas a connoisseur of the merits of a grand review. ciety of his own country. The royal table and Some of the Prussian Princes are great amateurs the palace are, in a manner, open to every lieuin military tailoring. The late King of Prussia, tenant; that is to say, the etiquette of the court Frederic William III., belonged to that class. prevents civilians, even of a very high rank, He bad a curious collection of dummies, as large from appearing at court, while it admits all milias life, dressed in the different uniforms of the tary officers of the rank of a lieutenant. A sysofficers, sergeants, and privates of all his regi- tem from which regulations like these emanate

It was his great pleasure, and seemed cannot have been in force for any length of time almost to be the object of his life, to walk about without exercising a strong influence on the the rooms containing this collection, and to im- minds of the people. The army in Prussia exprove on the costumes. He shortened a cuff, or cites not that curiosity and that romantic enthulengthened a collar, or tried what an additional siasm which other armies are the objects of, but inch in breadth would do for the strap of a knap- it is, nevertheless, an object of general and serisack. Any change on which he determined was ous interest. immediately introluced ainong all the corre There is, indeed, nowhere so close a connecsponding regiments in the army. Unluckily he tion between military and private life, as in consulted only his taste in these alterations, and Prussia. In that country there is no barrier, no never gave a thought to the comfort or conven- line of demarcation between the civilian and the ience of the soldier who was to wear the uni- soldier. Every civilian of moderate size and form. It looked well, at least to him: that was strength has either been a soldier or he is preenough. The coats, czakos, and straps of his paring to enter on that career. Only one third invention were so many instruments of torture. of the Prussian soldiers wear the red and blue The fatigues of a few years' parade service were coat and the king's cockade. The other two enough to ruin the strongest constitutions. Brain | thirds go about in the dress of peasants, of mer


chants, of mechanics, of tradesmen : they are in ous sight to see them arrive from all parts of the the church, in the schools, in the courts of jus-country, dressed in their best dresses, and extice. It is almost impossible to walk three yards cited by their anticipations of military life, to in any Prussian town without meeting a soldier. which many of them look forward with great He is not a yeoman or a militiaman : no, he is a joy. They are usually accompanied by the prinbonâ fide soldier, whose years of drill are over, cipal civil officers of their respective parishes, and whose exercise and manæuvring is by far who take their places at the board, for the pur. more regular and correct than that of the troops pose of protecting those of their parishioners of the line. The distinguishing feature of the whose circumstances entitle them to a dispensaPrussian army and of military life in that coun- tion from nulitary service. The young men are try lies in the conscriptional radicalism of her marched up in files, measured, and examined by recruiting system. Recruiting by conscription the doctor. If they are too small or too weak, is by no means a new invention ; the thing has they are told to come back next year; if cripoften been tried by the arbitrary rulers of dif- pled and totally disabled they are at once struck ferent countries, and some modifications of that out of the list. Those whom the doctor declares system are even now in force in some of the fit for service are successively called upon by continental states. But however severe these their names, to show cause why they should not systems of conscription may be, there is always be enlisted to serve in the army. Young men a loophole for rank and wealth to escape through; of good conduct, who can prove that their paand whatever the provisions of the statute may rents are unable to provide for themselves, are have been in theory, the burden of military ser put back for one or two years, until their brothvice fell always on the poorer classes of the peo- ers and sisters are grown up. The only son of ple. Such is not the case in Prussia. The an aged and poor couple is usually set down as framers of the present military system were even free; the only son of a widow is free by an more severe with the wealthy than with the indi- especial provision of the statute. All applicagent; for a man may be excused from military tions for freedom from military service are sifted service on the plea of the poverty of his family; with the utmost severity: poverty is almost exwhereas no riches whatever can save a strong, clusively the availing plea. The effect of a healthy young “gentleman” from being enlisted. man's being married is of no help to him. He The Prussian legislators are not generally over is told he had no business to marry before he careful of the poorer classes; but in their mili- appeared before the Commission. All fit and tary legislature it was their plan to make the proper persons — usually eight out of ten -- are army an object of interest to the people at large, dismissed till the first week of August, when and especially to the most influential members they have to appear before another Commission, of the community. They were very right in which is emphatically called the Grand Commispresuming that the best way to do this, was to sion. Its business is to distribute the recruits enlist wealth and influence.

among the different troops and regiments of the The Prussian law of conscription is most sim- service. Each man is again carefully examined. ple and sweeping. Every able-bodied native of The finest and tallest fellows are picked out to the Prussian dominions is bound to serve the serve in the guards. Those who can prove that State as a soldier, from the beginning of his they belong to the profession of huntsmen and twentieth year till he has reached the age of foresters, are sent to join the rifle-brigade. Powfifty. That is the fundamental principle. Such erful and active fellows are distributed among a law, if adopted by a free country like Eng- the horse artillery, the cuirassiers, and lancers. land, would be an example of the generosity Young men of lesser size are incorporated in and heroic devotion of the people, the like of the light cavalry, and infantry. Eight days afwhich is not to be found in history. In a coun ter the Grand Commission has been held, the try like Prussia it is nothing more than a most recruits are again assembled, and marched off arbitrary measure, which, strange to say, has to join their respective regiments. Their term hitherto had some good effects, and done little of service in the ranks is three years. It is harm. The law is a very fair one, in so far as a very short time for a soldier to learn the its burden lies alike on all classes and all ranks. whole of his duty in : and indeed the Prussian It is vigorously executed. A Commission, con- recruits are almost too much worked in the first sisting of a major of the army, a lieutenant, and six weeks of their service. They must learn to an army physician, sits during the first weeks of handle their muskets and sabres, and to march May in the principal town of every borough. in files. They have from six to eight hours' All the young men of that district who in that drilling each day, besides attending at three year enter the age of twenty are bound to ap- musters, when their dress and appearance is pear before this Commission. It is a very curi- 1 minutely inspected by the officers. When the

rudiments of the service have been taught the private soldier in the crack regiments has scarcerecruits, they are at once received into their re- ly one hour of the twenty-four which he can spective companies and battalions, and instruct call his own. He is busy from morning till ed in the field service, to march and maneuvre night; he is always either on duty or preparing in companies, in regiments, in brigades and in for duty. Sunday afternoon is, in fact, the only divisions. They are practised in shooting at the free time for a Prussian soldier, and even then mark and fighting with the bayonet; and those he has not much time for mischief, for at eight who do not know reading and writing are taught o'clock the retreat is sounded. A great deal of to do so. Each soldier has, moreover, to attend bad behaviour is in this manner prevented, and for one or two hours a day at a school, where an the young men are accustomed to habits of cleanofficer first lectures, and then examines on vari- liness, industry, and good order. Besides their ous theoretical points connected with the service. military duty, they learn a great many things, They are taught how to behave on guard, in the which in after life are very useful to them. field, in bivouac; they learn something of the They are taught, by necessity, to wash their nature and qualities of fire-arns, and some of linen, to mend their clothes, and to cook their the fundamental rules of field fortification. Many dinners. A certain number of men, headed by of the young soldiers make great progress : oth an officer, are every day on duty in the kitchen. ers, on the contrary, are extremely stupid. The officer has to see to the quality and quantiHackländer, in his “ Sketches of a Soldier's ty of the materials provided for the common Life," * tells an amusing anecdote of a recruit dinner, and the men prepare the victuals and of the artillery, who could not be made to un- cook them. No soldier leaves the Prussian ser. derstand and remember what gunpowder was vice without having acquired the rudiments of made of. The lieutenant, who lectured on gun the art of cookery. Almost every article which nery was in despair. The fellow could not re- is used in the barracks is manufactured by the member the three articles: brimstone, charcoal, soldiers themselves; their clothes, too, are made and saltpetre. The moment they told him, he in a regimental tailor's shop, the foreman of forgot all about it. The colonel of the brigade which is a sergeant, who has given satisfactory was at last informed of the circumstance, and proofs of his proficiency in the trade. This systried what he could do. Gunpowder is made tem is a capital one, on account of its cheapness. of saltpetre, charcoal, and brimstone,” said the Indeed, it would be next to impossible for a colonel, “ now tell me: what is gunpowder made country like Prussia, without colonies, and with of? " " It is made of charcoal — and brimstone none but her internal resources, to keep an army - and — and ". In fact he knew not. The of between two to three hundred thousand men, colonel fancied the poor fellow was bewildered, if each individual soldier were one half as exand frightened by the idea of talking to one so pensive as the soldiers of other nations — for high in command as himself. “Well,” said he, example, the English. A Prussian soldier gets “I see how it is," and taking off his hat with the about three halfpence a day for bis food, but out large white plume, he put on a gunner's forage of this he has to provide blacking and pipe-clay cap. “Now," said the colonel to the recruit, for the cleaning of his shoes and arms. Besides,

you must forget that I am your colonel. Think he has two pounds of bread a day. An English I am your old friend and comrade, Jack, the reader will fancy that the soldiers must be halfgunner. Can you manage to fancy that?" starved on so meagre an allowance, but it is no " Yes.” “Very well! Now, I come to you, such thing. The young peasants never look so saying, ' My dear fellow, do tell me what the stout and blooming as during the years of their deuce is gunpowder made of?' What would military service - it fattens them. Most of them you answer to that? Speak freely !” The re sell one half of their allowance of bread to the cruit thought for a moment, and then said: poorer population in the neighbourhood of the “What would I answer? I'd say: "Do n't ask barracks. The lower classes are very fond of me questions. You know much better what the king's bread; it is very good, and the solgunpowder is made of than I do!)

diers give it much cheaper than the bakers. An Besides the necessity the Prussian generals infantry soldier costs the king of Prussia for his are under, of finishing the education of their clothes, arms, and victuals, between six and soldiers in three years, there seems to be the seven pounds a year. The expenses of the carvery prudent maxim among them, that a soldier alry and artillery are proportionably greater. must be hard worked to prevent him from get. But the grand economic feature of the plan is, ting demoralized and mischievous. Indeed, a that after a three years' service, the man is sent

back to his home to follow bis trade or a profes* Das Solilatenleber im Fieden. Von F. W. Hackländer. Vierle Auflage. Stutgart, 1848. Lon

sion. From that moment he costs almost nothdon, Williains et Norgate.

ing, and yet he is still a soldier. It is to the

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