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are therefore not worthy the name of PUBLIC GROUNDS; nor can any man of reflection be induced to think Mr. Stuart worthy of support on such grounds, merely because he is solicited to do so; although the closing part of the circular, in which the writer more clearly explains his motive, may be more intelligible; and the opportunity of obliging two distinguished friends of the Treasury and the Direction be too tempting to be missed.
Having also in our possession a circular of another Director, sent round in behalf of the same favourite Candidate, we may insert it here, to keep the other in countenance. It is as follows:
DEAR SIR,-I beg leave to solicit the favour of your vote, and of your interest with your friends, at the ballot on the 8th of March, in behalf of Mr. James Stuart, a candidate to fill the vacancy in the East India Direction, occasioned by the retirement of Mr. Hudleston. Mr. Stuart was upwards of thirty years on the civil service of the Company in Bengal ; after having, with distinguished merit, filled several important offices, he was appointed by the Court of Directors a Member of the Supreme Council, and in that high station, his talents, his judicious ZEAL FOR THE INTEREST OF HIS EMPLOYERS, and for the good government and happiness of the Natives of India, and his upright firm mind, were eminently conspicuous. In the confidence that his services in the Direction will be of great benefit to the Company and to THE PEOPLE OF INDIA, I recommend him to your favour. I have the honour to be, dear Sir, your most obedient servant,
13, Gloucester-Place, 26th Feb. 1826.
Besides the more modest, and, we must add, more sensible, because less disputable, pretences put forth for Mr. Stuart by his former friend (for the number of years' service being given, the knowledge may be perhaps admitted,) Mr. Bebb is anxious to lift his idol a little higher on the pedestal; and, as if he really believed that the Proprietors would prefer one man who had "good government" at heart rather to one who had not, sets up Mr. Stuart as zealous for this lip-bepraised but heart-contemned non-entity. Ilis "zeal for the interests of his employers" may have been all his friends can describe; but we never heard of the happiness of the people of India forming any part of Mr. Stuart's especial care. We say again, look to facts and not professions, and let the Hyderabad Papers say what these are. But that Mr. Bebb, who listened to Mr. Impey's definition of the India Government as one "that always has been, now is, and ever must be an absolute despotisin while in the hands of the Company," and who smiled in approbation of its advocate; that such an individual should talk of the "good government" of India, and recommend Mr. Stuart as favourable to its encouragement, is not a little marvellous, if any thing indeed could surprise us in this brazen age.
Of what benefit to the Company any Director can be, who does not increase its patronage and its dividends, (the two great objects of general desire,) we are not aware. Of benefit to the people of India a good and firm man might, in the course of years, hope to be; but we have no hesitation in expressing our belief, that if any Proprietor should vote for Mr. Stuart in this hope, he will live to be disappointed.
The imperial style of Mr. Bebb's conclusion, in which he recommends the Candidate to favour, is the more remarkable, inasmuch as it is thought he is not quite secure in his own seat. The accuracy or error of this surmise will soon be determined.
The first improvement we should like to see introduced into the mode of announcing candidates and electing them, would be, that of bringing each to a full Court of Proprietors at the India House, there to state his own pretensions,-there to answer, face to face, those who might dispute his claims,-there to repeat his pledges of future conduct, and have them made matter of record, accompanied with an engagement of immediate resignation when those principles were no longer maintained. If this were done, the circulars of Directors might be spared, and greater reform would be introduced by such a change than by almost any other that could be named as long as the monopoly exists.
We were accidentally present at one, and one only, of the meetings held for the purpose of supporting a certain Candidate; and, as we were led to understand from those who had witnessed many, that this differed greatly from the general routine, we regretted there were not reporters for the public papers there to record the proceedings. In general, however, they are close meetings, confined to particular friends of the party proposed; and the only animated portion of the labour is the luncheon to which the fatigued hearers retire after their "public labour" is over, so that there is no demand for the gentlemen of the press, and consequently no supply.
At the meeting in question, where there was not, as far as we could observe, a single Director present, their interests being engaged as before described, much was said on behalf of the Candidate in question, and particular stress deservedly laid on his known attachment to a more liberal system of government, so as to elevate the character and condition of the Natives, as well as his intimate acquaintance with a portion of India, to the N. and N.W. of Bombay, from whence there is no individual at present in the Direction. But that which pleased us most was the frank and open avowal, on the part of the Candidate himself, of a determination to make the bettering the condition of the Native population of India the subject of his continual care, and a pledge to those by whom he was surrounded, that he should cease to ask their future support if he ever failed to make this the chief object of his ambition. We were glad also to hear this sentiment cheered as it deserved; and we were the more disposed after this to preserve a fragment of a letter read to the meeting from a gentleman, (Mr. Inglis,) who was disappointed in his hope of attending it personally, and who, therefore, desired that his sentiments might be conveyed in writing as he should have uttered them. Among the passages we most distinctly heard, were the following:
You, who so well know my sentiments, can best appreciate the feelings of deep disappointment which my absence from the meeting of to-day occasions me. It was a wish indeed very near my heart to have attended, and in person to have borne testimony to the private and public claims of
one possessing so large a share of my affectionate regard and unfeigned respect; a testimony which upwards of four-and-twenty years of intimate knowledge would have fully entitled, as well as enabled me to support; and further, in urging the merits of the son, to have brought to the recollection of many a friend present, the inestimable worth and the oftenrecorded sense of the public services of the revered father. This, however, is not denied me: from my bed I convey what I should have felt an indescribable happiness in standing up in my place at the meeting, and conscientiously declaring, that if public services already held in high and deserved estimation; if local experience, and a most intimate knowledge of political relations in a quarter of India destined, ere long, to become that of the deepest interest; if systematic habits of business, if independence of character, if gentlemanly deportment, and if principles of the strictest honour and integrity, can give any individual a claim to the support of friends, or to the just consideration of the Proprietors at large,—that individual is JAMES RIVETT CARNAC.
We do not think these considerations will weigh so strongly with the multitude as they have done with the individual who has been influenced by them as he describes. Would it were otherwise! and that character and qualifications formed the only test. But though we do not hope to see this accomplished soon, we hail every approach to it as a good omen; and on that ground, we should infinitely prefer Major Carnac, Mr. Tucker, and Mr. Mackinnon, not only to all those now in the field with them, and coming to the ballot on the 12th, but also to some of the six that are to go out by rotation, and whose places, if they could not be better filled by any we could name, will at least enjoy the advantage of a change; for if the permanency of evil in any system is its bane, any and every change in its very ministers may give a hope at least of amelioration.
SONNET TO A LADY AT THE HARP.
By D. L. Richardson.
On! breathe, melodious Minstrel, once again
Or charms the slumbering mourner.
Beneath the lunar beam. Then, waken still
A spell from heaven by skill celestial wrought
To cheer the clouded mind, the sad heart thrill
WISE PROVISION OF THE CODE NAPOLEON,
To the Editor of the Oriental Herald.
SIR, MANY of your readers have, I dare say, become well acquainted with the Code Napoleon, a monument of legislative wisdom, deserving, and probably destined to survive, the brass and marble devoted to the memory of successful martial ambition; and to reach that promised age, when " men shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning hooks, neither shall they learn war any more."
That Code has, indeed, raised its author to the dignity of man, while his contemporary occupants of thrones will appear on the page of history as mere kings and emperors. Those who have perused it with any attention, will, I am persuaded, recollect one of its most salutary provisions when reading a passage in your last Volume, (p. 291,) where you suppose the case of a will made by a Hindoo, in favour of some artful Brahmin possessing and exercising an influence over him, in his dying moments, sufficient to induce him to sign such an instrument."
Napoleon was well aware how the Brahmins of the Gallican Church, as of every other branch of the elder ecclesiastical establishment, had largely possessed, and lavishly exercised, such an influence, especially on the better and most susceptible portion of humanity. He was aware, too, of the popular prejudice by which such an influence was supported. This, therefore, in No. 909 of his Code, he somewhat indirectly proceeds to counteract. First, he introduces a class of professors whose lucrative influence over the dying had never been of any account compared with that of the clergy. The law thus
"Les docteurs en médicine ou en chirurgerie, les officiers de santé et les pharmaciens, qui auront traité une personne pendant la maladie dont elle meurt, ne pourront profiter des dispositions entre-vifs ou testamentaires qu'elle auroit faites en leur faveur pendant le cours de cette maladie."
Exceptions follow in favour of an adequate remuneration for professional services, and of legacies claimed in the character of relation; concluding with this sentence, which expresses, no doubt, the chief purpose of the whole regulation; "Les mêmes règles seront observeés à l'égard du ministre du culte." No wonder that "the craftsmen" of Holy Church, like the ancient worshippers "of the great goddess Diana, and of the image which fell down from Jupiter," should have become full of wrath," or have sighed for the return of the legitimate race. Nor have they sighed in vain, for the Bourbons, though at first constrained to adopt into their Code Royale much of the equity and good sense which distinguish the Code Napoleon, have ever since been industrious to explain away, if they could not yet formally annul its most important provisions. Such are the blessings restored to France by the bayonets of Britain and the Holy Alliance !
N. L. T.
Oriental Herald, Vol. 9.
DEFICIENCY OF OFFICERS IN THE INDIAN ARMY.
The following extracts of private letters, from different officers of the Indian army, though not of the most recent date, are important, as showing the opinions that prevailed in the several quarters where the writers of them happened to be stationed:
"The new pay regulations have given universal disgust; and, how. ever trivial people in power may think this, nothing leads to mutiny and disaffection so soon as a general expression of disgust among the officers. This is certainly the case with regard to the new pay regulations. Officers of rank will not remain in India if they can possibly exist at home, as the higher commands, which ought to be lucrative, are absolutely not worth accepting. As a proof of this, there have lately been two offered to three or four officers before Government could get one to accept them. These sentiments of disgust do not rankle less deeply from the press being in such a degraded state of slavery, that there is not any channel for the oppressed to give vent to their feelings. The late alarming mutinies in Bengal ought to open people's eyes."
We are furnished with the following view of the state of the Indian army for the Bombay presidency, calculating on twenty-six regiments of infantry, including European :
Establishment of each.. Total for 26 regiments.. Absent from their regi-" ments on Government commands; Staff employ; extra battalions in the service of Native Powers; provincials; and on furlough to Europe; not one half of which are put down in the Army List
Present with the whole 26 regiments ....
"This gives an average of twelve officers for each regiment; out of which the average number in sick quarters is three, frequently more, but seldom less; leaving about nine officers to each regiment of 1000 strong, including Commanding Officer, Adjutant, and Quartermaster!! The Bengal and Madras presidencies are as badly off. With this proportion of officers, if ever serious opposition is met with, defeat must ensue; it has invariably been the case where the enemy have made a bold stand. To look back for only three or four years :
"Ist. In the Gulph of Persia, the detachment under Captain Thom. son (800) was annihilated, and all the guns and stores taken, only