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material progress, the healthful influence which, by means of organization, they have exercised on legislation, the use which they have made of the opportunities which improved laws have placed within their reach, and the growth among them of more loyal and patriotic sentiments, they have established a fair claim to the enjoyment of political rights. The writers' general conclusion is
That, with the exception of certain quarters of the metropolis, and of our larger towns, where, through the gradual withdrawal of the wealthy, then of the comfortable classes, either to other quarters or to country residences, the
poor have been left alone to become poorer, more ignorant, and more degraded ; of certain other towns and quarters of towns where, through some sudden influx of prosperity, or, again, through the demolition caused by railways or other public works, the population has become accumulated under bad sanitary conditions, often in dwellings hastily run up by speculators, and has so fallen a prey to similar evils; or, lastly, of particular trades which have remained exceptionally depressed through peculiar circumstances, or in which, conversely, through exceptional prosperity, the rise in the price of labour has outstripped the development of the legitimate wants of the worker,—the progress of the working class since 1832 has been general and continuous. We are far from saying that it has been as rapid—that it has been carried as far-as it might have been ; that the working man has made the full use of the opportunities which have been offered to him. But we believe, nevertheless, that the history of no people under the sun will show a period of the same duration in which, without any great political or social revolution, so great a progress has been achieved by the working class, and that chiefly through influences which God has been pleased to evolve from the bosom of the class itself.
It is in this very progress, however, and especially in the means by which it has been secured, that many find the real reason for opposing any advance in the democratic direction. Last year we had many professions from the Conservative side of desire to enfranchise the more intelligent and virtuous of the working men, if only any wise principle of selection could be adopted. We pointed out at the time that, if the truth were told, these were just the class whom such talkers would have excluded. Professedly they were afraid of the venality, the drunkenness, the ignorance of the masses ; in reality, it was the independence, the intelligence, the marvellous power of organization shown by the better portion which they dreaded. If any doubted this before, Mr. Disraeli's speech at Merchant Taylors' must have been enough to convince them that the professed dread of the increase of corruption was nothing better than a piece of miserable hypocrisy. The paper of which we are speaking proves that their fear of the artisan class is sufficiently reasonable, for it shows the class is powerful, and that its sympathies are on the side of liberty.
On the question of Trade-Unions Mr. Godfrey Lushington writes with great vigour, but, unfortunately, with too little
discrimination. In the present state of feeling among the classes to which our literary men belong it argues no little chivalry on the part of those who avow themselves champions of the hated and calumniated Trade-Unions, and perhaps when such a feeling takes possession of a generous heart it is probable enough that it will go to an extreme. Mr. Godfrey Lushington has thus been betrayed into occasional exaggerations which we greatly regret, because they weaken the general effect of a very able exposition of the subject, and afford opponents the very opportunity they desire for evading the force of the considerations he adduces. But, though he speaks too lightly of the evils with which Trade-Unions have been attended, and certainly underrates the amount of sympathy which the operatives bave received, especially from the Press, he is perfectly correct in the view he takes of the bearing of the law, and particularly of the law as administered by the “Great Unpaid ” on the interests of the employed, and does good service in correcting some of the misrepresentations to which the Unions have been exposed. If he is disposed unduly to extenuate, there have been plenty to set down in malice, truths and fictions alike, which are readily swallowed and freely retailed in middle-class circles. The very principle of such associations is condemned, and the workmen blamed as though they were the only offenders in this respect, while many of their loudest censors are certainly sharers of their sins, if sins they be. An incident came under our own notice, a short time ago, which shows that shopkeepers at least are fully prepared to carry out the principle of combination to its fullest extent. The Civil Service Stores, as many of our readers must be aware, have interfered considerably with the London retailers and their extravagant profits. The Grocers' Association have, therefore, determined to prevent the managers of these stores from buying the articles they require, and have threatened the manufacturers or merchants with the withdrawal of their custom if they supply any goods to these mischievous intruders. Surely in principle this is nothing better than “rattening” in the germ. The men who would not scruple to destroy another man's business, because he has dared to deal with customers whom they do not approve, may be restrained by the public opinion of their own circle from such violent outrages as those to which the Sheffield men have had recourse, but they have hardly any right to pride themselves on the possession of superior virtue. For many points in the practice of these Unions there is not a shadow of an excuse; but the admission of the operatives to the franchise will do much to soften the existing bitterness of feeling, and it may be hoped also to end those fearful atrocities by which Broadhead and men of his type have discredited their own cause, by providing legitimate means for the redress of any actual grievances. Mr. Lushington says, a little overstating the case perhaps, but still with substantial truth,
The fact is, that the acquisition of the franchise is regarded by the working classes as the first stage of their formal incorporation with the body politic. That hitherto they have been socially excluded, and that the time is ripe for their admission, it needs but a glance at the past and the present to show. The wilful and almost universal ignorance concerning Trade. Unions is of itself a clear proof that working men are an unfamiliar, an unconsidered class, whose inner life is hidden from society-in short, with. out the pale. The law of Master and Servant, which renders breach of contract by the master a civil matter, and a breach by the servant a crime ; the law of Trade-Unions, which confines them by tightly-drawn cords, surrounds them with vague terrors, stigmatizes them as contrary to the public policy, and denies them protection for their property ; the insolence of masters who choose to ignore the officers of the Union as the representatives of its members ; the general prejudice that Unions are gatherings of the disaffected, and strikes open mutinies of the lower orders of society-all these spring from the same sentimentthat the working classes are an alien, inferior race; that they have no business to be independent; that they are born to do as they are bid; that they are not quite free to think for themselves, not quite free to give or withhold their labour.
Probably if Mr. Godfrey Lushington were a master himself, he might think that masters might, without any insolence, decline to allow the interference of officers of Trade-Unions with the conduct of their private business, and if one-half the stories which we have heard be true, might rather feel that the insolence and annoyance are rather on the other side. But he expresses only too correctly a feeling that is wide-spread and growing among what are called the higher classes, indications of which we find in the absurd conduct of the Royal Commissioners to Mr. Conolly, the fierce assaults directed against Professor Beesley, whose unwise speeches afford but a poor apology for the treatment he has received, and in the impudent style in which such a judge as Sir A. Cockburn has been assailed because he dared to run counter to a class-feeling, and assert the majesty of the law as the protector of the weak and oppressed. In the face of such manifestations as these, we cannot be too severe on Mr. Lushington's extremes, and sincerely hope with him that one of the earliest results of their being made depositaries of political power, will be a change in the public consideration shown to operatives and their associations.
We had intended to speak of the bearing of the changes on ecclesiastical questions, but our space compels us to pause for the present.
The greater number of our mental pleasures are drawn from sources of memory and hope; for while hope is constantly adorning the future with fresh colours and bright images, memory is as active in bringing back to us the joys of the past; and though it is also her duty to introduce its pains, it is with the veil of time becomingly thrown over them to soften the severity of their features, and render their presence not only endurable, but often soothing and welcome.
But we would not speak of the pleasures alone which these kind handmaids of our life are commissioned to procure for us. They hold instruction in their keeping; and if we will intimately and seriously converse with them, we may receive from their lips the lessons of wisdom and virtue. They are to be consulted on the real business, as well as the meditative delights of existence; for what would be the excitement of labour, without the encouragement of hope? and where could experience go for his treasures, if the storehouse of memory should fail ? I might compare these faculties to the valuable friends who are always found ready to minister to our amusement and participate in our gaiety, and equally ready to counsel our sober hours and assist our emergencies with effectual help.
Let us give our attention, at this time, to the instructive voice of memory. Let us lend a careful ear to the moral of her tales. Let us, like the Psalmist, when we remember the days of old, hallow our reminiscences by meditating on the works of God; by tracing the hand of a merciful Providence through the varied fortunes of our course. We all have joys, we all have sorrows, and we all have sins to remember.
I. The memory of joy reaches far back in the annals of every one's life. Indeed, there are many who persuade themselves that they never experienced true pleasure, except in the earliest stages of their career; who complain that, when the hours of childhood flew away, they bore off the best joys of life upon their wings, leaving passion to be the minister of youth, and care to be the portion of manhood, and regret and pain to drag old age into the grave. I cannot sympathize in these gloomy views. I consider them as in a high degree unjust to the happiness which God has spread out liberally through every division of our days, and which can be missed or forfeited in hardly any other manner than through our wilful sins. But I do not the less share the visions and participate in the pleasure of those who love to retrace the green paths of their early years, and refresh their hearts with the retrospect of guileless innocence, of sunbright hopes, of delights that the merest trifle could purchase, and of tears that any kind hand could wipe away.
How many scenes exist in the remembrance of each one of us, soft and dim, and sacred, beyond the painter's art to copy, but hung up, as in an ancient gallery, for the visits and contemplation of our maturer minds ! Mellowed they are and graced, like other pictures, by the slow and tasteful hand of time. The groves through which we ran as free as our playmate the wind, wave with a more graceful foliage, and through a purer shade; the ways which our young feet trod, have lost their ruggedness, and are bordered everywhere with flowers; and no architecture that we have since seen, though we may have wandered through king's palaces, can equal the beauty of the doors which our hands first learned to open, and of the apartments which once rang with the echoes of our childish glee.
Then there was joy in our hearts when we first began to take a part in the serious business of life, and felt that we were qualifying ourselves for a station, perhaps an honourable one, among our seniors. We were joyful when we won the prize of exertion, or received the praise and the smiles of those whose praise and smiles were worth to us more than any
other reward. Joy was our companion when we first went out a little way upon the broad face of the earth, and saw how fair and grand she was, covered with noble cities, and artful monuments and various productions, and the busy tribes of men. Joy came with friendship, and affection, and confidence, and the pure interchange of hearts and thoughts. And more than this, we were joyful when we were virtuous and useful; when we strove against a besetting temptation, and knew that our spirit was strong to subdue it; when we came out boldly, and denounced injustice, and defended the right; when we gave up a selfish gratification, and received a blessing; when we forbore to speak iil of a rival, though by so doing we might have advanced our own claims; when we dismissed envy from our bosoms, and made it give place to a generous admiration; when we forgave an enemy, and prayed from our hearts that God might forgive him too; when we stretched out a willing hand to heal, to help, to guide, to protect, to save; in short, whenever we discharged an obligation, and performed a duty, and earned the approbation of conscience.
Let me not omit, in the enumeration of joys, the memory of our religious experiences and improvements. Let me not be so dull and cold-hearted as to pass by the hours which were con