Abbildungen der Seite
[merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][subsumed][merged small][graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small]

In traversing the French coast from north to south, two classes, of which the one are attached to the from Dunkirk to the Alps, we find it inhabited suc- whale and cod fisheries, the other consists of those cessively by Flemings, Normans, Bretons, Basques, who fish along the coast and supply the towns that or Biscayans, and the men of Languedoc and Pro- border upon it. The former embark from the ports vence. Much as these differ in point of origin and of French Flanders, Normandy, and most of all, of language, they remarkably resemble each other in Brittany; they are engaged during the earlier months their habits and daily occupations. The whole of the of the year, and return in September or October. French coast provides seamen for the royal navy, and Such as do return, (for many perish,) generally have masters and pilots for merchant vessels, as well as four or five hundred francs (from 161. to 201.) in dockyard men for the arsenals; and while the male their pockets, to assist them through the Winter. population is engaged in one or other of these em- This they may increase by fishing off the coast, or ployments, or in the coasting-trade and fisheries, the by making nets for those who send out the fishingwomen, old men and children, remain at home, at- vessels, working up the raw material with which the tending to the culture of the ground and harvest. latter supply them, and are paid two or three hundred work. When the return of Winter brings them all francs for their labour. From these different retogether, the old boats are repaired, new ones built, sources, a family of four or five persons is supported; and nets are manufactured.

and though with industry and good management a It has been remarked, however, that although the certain measure of comfort may be thus secured, whole line of the French coast supplies seamen, all there can be no laying up of any positive provision do not possess the same qualities. The men of Pro- against future wants. Such is the condition of the vence and Gascony are the most active and the most French seaman, whether he serve his country at intelligent; the Bretons the steadiest, the hardiest, twenty-seven francs per month, or engage in the and the stoutest. A French admiral, Grivel, con- merchant service at forty-five francs. siders the inhabitants of ancient Armorica, now Those who fish along the coast, though exposed, Brittany, to be peculiarly fitted for the sea.

perhaps, to fewer risks than those who go to the The seaman, when ashore, carries into his family whale-fishery off Cape Horn, or to the northern codhabits and manners quite his own. The house he fishery, are worse off in other respects. Landernau, occupies is generally cleaner than those belonging to Belle-isle, and some other ports on the coast or landsmen of the same rank in life who only till the Brittany, are the chief stations for the sardine fishery; soil. He wears also on his countenance an expression Cancale, Grandville, and Dieppe, are the same for of seriousness approaching to melancholy, indicating oyster dredging, and the Channel ports in general for a life exposed to risks and difficulties.

the herring and mackerel fishings. The first of these The inhabitants of the French coast, from the gives employment to about fifteen hundred boats, simple fact of their geographical position, as soon as each manned with a crew of four,—the master, an they cease being employed in the navy or merchant experienced seaman, a novice, and a boy. They are service, engage in one or other of the fisheries. But engaged, for the most part, about the middle of Nosuch as are fishermen by profession are divided into vember, for the following Spring, by merchants who VOL. XIII.




give them from fifteen to twenty francs for the whole

The inhabitants have become habituated to fishing season; but over and above this, the master the idea that a wrecked vessel is their lawful prey of each of the boats is entitled to a ninth-part of the and a godsend. Nay, it is not many years since the fish that are caught, the mate is allowed a tenth, the inhabitants of Brittany, during storms, would allure novice a twentieth, while the boy has nothing at all. ships to the coast by false signals, then plunder the They have also a few furnishings, a little wine, wood cargoes, and sometimes murder the crews. for fuel to cook their victuals with, &c.; but, on the whole, these poor creatures have hardly enough to meet the first wants of nature, and on some parts of the coast their distress is extreme. Nothing can


ORDEAL. form a greater contrast with their condition than that of the fishing population of Holland, where, through The custom of judicial combats, of which traces the universal diffusion of an excellent Protestant were discoverable in our laws until the beginning of education, from the independence and economy of the reign of George the Fourth, was introduced into all classes, and the wise combination of the interests civilized Europe by the barbarous tribes of Germany of all in common enterprizes, family comfort and a who overwhelmed the Roman empire. It appears to sufficiency of food are found at all times, and uni- have been first legally established by Gondebald, versally, prevalent.

king of the Franks, by an edict published at Lyons, The men engaged in the oyster-fishery are not thus March 29, A.D. 501, in which the monarch assigns exposed to the hazard of actual want. These have his reasons for establishing, or rather sanctioning the the article they bring to market always within certain institution : “ Let causes be decided by wager of reach,—the oysters being attached to the fishing battle, to the end that rash oaths should no longer be ground, from which they are detached by means of taken respecting obscure facts, nor false oaths rean instrument six feet long, somewhat like a shovel, specting certainties." What a singular picture of with a kind of sack behind, made of cord or strips morals is contained in these few words ; perjury had of leather. This, when dragged along the bottom of become so monstrous an evil, that murder was chosen the sea, collects all that comes in its way. The oyster as the milder alternative! s found along the whole north coast of France, but The judicial combat thus sanctioned by royal s nowhere so plentiful as at Cancale and Grandville. authority, was called the "judgment of God!" The Upwards of a hundred millions are taken up every Germanic tribes worshipped a deity who delighted in! year, and yet they seem more inexhaustible than ever. war and slaughter, and so deeply was this ancient The oyster-fishery produces about fifteen millions of creed impressed upon their minds, that it long resisted francs (about 600,0001.) a-year, and hence diffuses the influence of Christianity; the Romish clergy the means of easy subsistence at the two ports we sanctioned the profanation of attributing to the have mentioned, whose population has lately advanced Divine Being the character of the heathen deity, from 3500 to 5000 inhabitants. The oyster-dredgers because it tended to increase their power by giving are, generally speaking, better lodged, clothed, and them a pretext for interfering in judicial trials. The fed, than any other class of seamen. The fishings forms of the legal combat were composed of the are carried on with most activity during Winter; and customs of savage life, combined with the corruptions in spite of the severity of the weather, it is not un- of Christianity; religion and law were equally deseusual for the men to spend several successive nights crated by being brought to preside in a field of blood. at sea.

The rules of judicial combat are detailed at great Next to the Grandville and Cancale fishermen, length in the ordinances of various kings during the those of the inhabitants of the coast of France, who Middle Ages, but the following summary will be seem to live most comfortably, belong to the Flemish found amply sufficient for general readers. and Channel ports; for their superiority in this When a plaintiff claimed a possession which the respect, however, they are indebted not so much to defendent refused to resign, or charged him with a their nets as to other petty branches of industry crime which he denied, a challenge was the immediate which they combine with fishing. The Flemings result. Whichever of them appealed to the combat cultivate each a small spot of ground, or engage in threw down before his adversary some pledge, usually the egg trade with England. The fishermen of

a glove, which was called the gage of battle, and Cherbourg, Fecamp, and St. Valery, rear pigs for taking this up was the signal that the challenge was selling to vessels going to sea, or engage in smuggling accepted. In later ages it was necessary to have the tobacco and snuif.

permission of the king or liege lord before a challenge Unhappily there is one vice common to all the sea- could be given, but at first, the Suzerain had no faring people along the French coast, from Dunkirk right to interfere until called to preside at the combat to Bayonne, and that is the abuse of spirituous or to name a president, and his power was limited to liquors. In Flanders the nien make themselves drunk naming the place and time for the contest. When with gin; in Normandy with cyder; in Brittany with the challenge was accepted, each combatant named brandy; in the Landes and in Gascony with wine. certain witnesses, called sponsors, or godfathers, Drunkenness and ignorance are the two great evils because," says an old historian, “ they were about that press down the labouring part of the population to attend a baptism of blood," and these called the of the French coast. Even when drunkenness fails champions their god-children! These sponsors, or to brutalize them, ignorance makes them the victims of seconds as they were subsequently called, were oricredulity and superstition. The hair-breadth and appa- ginally appointed to watch the combat, and see that rently-miraculous escapes of a seaman's life, together its rules were fairly observed; but they soon began to with the sublime aspect of the ocean continually present join in the fight themselves, either to aid or to avenge to him, might promote true religion in an enlightened their principals. person, but only render the ignorant man childishly Application was next made to the Suzerain to superstitious, and engage him

in practices not in the appoint the umpire or president, and the time and slightest degree calculated to improve his moral cha- place of the combat. A space called the "closeracter. Hence those barbarous manners which from field” was marked out, and surrounded by ropes or time immemorial have distinguished the shores of the palings. At the upper part of this little amphitheatre



a gallows or a pile of wood was erected, that the number of burning ploughshares, or to carry a burning vanquished, if he escaped with life, might be instantly horse-shoe to a given distance; if he did so without hanged or burned. In front of this were two seats manifest injury he was declared to have gained his covered with black, for the two combatants. Before entering the lists the combatants attended mass, and The trial by boiling water was conducted with received the eucharist in the form prescribed for its great ceremony; a ring was consecrated and thrown administration to persons at the point of death ; and into a cauldron of boiling water, and the party had to so conimon were such events, that a special service plunge his naked arm into the vessel and take out was prepared for the occasion, called “ the duellist the ring without wincing. It was believed that there mass,” (missa pro duello,) which may be found in was more room for artifice in this ordeal than in any most ancient missals. When the service was con- other; and it was therefore required that the water cluded, the combatants were led by their god-fathers, should be heated in the presence of competent witaccompanied by the heralds and clergy, to their seats nesses, and that it should boil up before the holy ring in the lists, and a discourse was pronounced, usually was thrown into it. by a priest, exhorting them not to tempt Providence The trial by cold water was the most dangerous to if conscious of falsehood or injustice.

the patient. A priest blessed the water in some deep An oath was administered to each, in which they pond or reservoir, into which the party was thrown called to witness, God, the Virgin Mary, the Saints, bound neck and heels. If he floated, it was conand especially " that good knight and gentleman St. sidered that the consecrated element refused to receive George," that their causes were just, and that they the wretch, and if he sank, he ran a fair chance of would not depart from them.

being drowned. This was the favourite ordeal in the They next swore on the Gospels that they had trial of witches; when any of these unfortunate used no sorcery, witchcraft, or magical incantations, beings floated, they were hurried to the stake or and that they had not about them any spell, amulet, stoned by the brutal spectators. or charm. But not satisfied with the oath, the pre- The judgment of the cross was a form of ordeal sident, called usually “the marshal of the field," patronized by an emperor so enlightened as Charlecaused the combatants to be searched, and at the magne. He ordained that in certain disputes, espesame time had their arms measured, so that neither cially between children, the parties should hold their should have an unfair advantage by length of weapon. hands extended so as to represent a cross, and who

The marshal of the field, attended by the sponsors, ever first let their hands fall, was adjudged to have then divided as fairly as ho could the advantages of lost his cause. ground, sun, and wind, sometimes adding comfitures Many examples of judicial combats are recorded in and other little sweets to serve as refreshments in the the old chronicles ; we shall extract the description battle. The lists were then cleared, and the specta- of one which took place in the presence of Louis the tors prohibited from entering them under pain of Second, king of France, surnamed the Stammerer, death; severe penalties were also denounced against about A.D. 878, preserving as well as translation will any person who should distract or interrupt the permit, the style of the original historian. combatants by coughing, sneezing, speaking, or Ingelgerius, Count of Gastinois, was found one morning making any sound whatever. When these prelimi- dead in his bed ; one of his relations, named Goutran, naries were arranged, the marshal gave the signal for accused his widow of the murder, and of other criminalities combat by dropping his truncheon, and saying to the besides. Nobody appearing as champion for the lady, she

summoned to her aid, Ingelgerius, Count of Anjou, whom sponsors, Let the brave champions go.”

she had held in her arms at the baptismal font, giving him In the earlier ages every combat was a duel “ to

the name of her husband, although he was not yet more the utterance,” that is, until one or other of the than sixteen years of age. The count readily engaged to champions was so disabled as to be unfit for conti- support his godmother's quarrel, and a day was fixed for nuing the fight. Defeat was condemnation, and when the combat. On the appointed morning the young count the subject of charge was a capital crime, the van

heard mass, distributed alms to the poor, made an offering

to the church, and fortified himself with the victorious sign quished passed at once from the lists to the gibbet.

of the cross; after which he proceeded to the lists, where Judicial combats in France were carried to a

Goutran stood prepared for the encounter. The lady of greater extent than in any other European country. Gastinois was then summoned, and the usual oaths taken; Not only could a challenge be maintained between the signal was given, and the champions met. Goutran the principals of a suit, but either of the parties struck the count so rudely that he cleft his shield in twain, might challenge one of his adversary's witnesses, but neither shield nor harness availed against the count's even the judge by whom the cause was tried, if dis- lance; he pierced Goutran through the body and threw him

from his horse. The count then dismounted and cut off satisfied with his decision. Ladies or ecclesiastics the head of the accuser, which he presented to the king, fought by proxy; if their champion was overthrown, who received it as gladly as if it had been a city. The he was condemned to lose his right hand, and this countess was immediately set at liberty, she bent her knee penalty was rigidly enforced, in order that cham- to the king, and then in the presence of the whole court pions should fight as strenuously in the cause of threw her arms round her champion's neck and kissed him. others as they would in their own.

In the reign of William the Conqueror judicial Wager of battle was a privilege peculiar to the combats appear to have been very common in Engnobles; those of lower rank were generally com

land, for one of his laws forbids clergymen to fight pelled to have recourse to ordeal. The most common duels without the previous permission of their bishop. form of ordeal was the trial by burning. The plaintiff But the feelings of the British people were averse to or defendant claiming this form of process, appeared this barbarism, and, from the eleventh century, courts before an ecclesiastical judge and lifted up a bar of of law possessed more authority in England than in red-hot iron in his right hand. The hand was then any other country. bandaged and secured by a seal. At the end of three days the seal was broken and the bandage removed ; | The study of truth is perpetually joined with the love of if no marks of burning appeared the patient gained virtue ; for there is no virtue which derives not its his cause, if otherwise, sentence was pronounced from truth; as, on the contrary, there is no vice which has against him. This form was sometimes varied; the not its beginning from a lie. Truth is the foundation of all party was required to walk barefoot over a certain knowledge, and the cement of all societies. —CASAUBON.


[ocr errors]


cated to it by means of a winch attacned to one of No. III.

its axes (1), or more conveniently by the multiplying

wheel, K. cc are hollow cylinders of metal, about ELECTRICAL MACHINES.

eighteen inches long, and foux inches in diameter. BEFORE we enter upon a particular explanation of These are called conductors, and are fixed upon glass the varied phenomena which present themselves whilst pillars D D, similar to those which support the glass pursuing a series of electrical investigations, it seems cylinder, as already described. The pillars DD are desirable that we give some account of Electrical' not attached permanently to the frame-work of the Machines, on whose agency, under proper manage- machine, but are cemented into pieces of wood, one ment, we depend for the successful prosecution of of which is shown at E, moving in a groove, and by these interesting researches.

means of adjusting screws () their_positions are regulated as circumstances require. To one of the conductors is attached a cushion or rubber, F, about two inches wide, and nearly equal in length to the glass cylinder, against which it is made gently and uniformly to press, by a slender metallic spring at its back, aided by the adjusting screw 1. The cushion is made of soft leather (either red or purple basil are the kinds commonly used), and is stuffed with horse-hair or wool. The former, on account of its greater elasticity, is the most preferable. The other conductor is

furnished with a row of fine steel points, projecting D B B D

about an inch from its side, and so arranged that they may be as close as possible, but without touching it, to the glass cylinder. To the upper side of the cushion F, is sewn a piece of stout green or black silk, slightly

stiffened by being oiled. This flap of silk, G, extends K H н

from the rubber, across the surface of the cylinder, to within about three-fourths of an inch of the steel points just mentioned.

The conductor to which the steel points are attached is commonly called the prime conductor. As shown in the figure, it stands parallel to the cylinder ; but in practice it is more convenient to place it at rightangles; in which case the points are fixed to the end nearest the machine, to receive the electricity which is

given off at the opposite end. The adaptation of the several parts of an electrical The several parts of the electrical machine being machine, by means of which we obtain at pleasure thus arranged, we have no difficulty in understanding large supplies of electricity, is a consequence of the its principle, and the conditions on which its efficacy knowledge we have previously attained of the habits depends. Before, however, it can be pronounced of certain substances, when submitted to the process ready for action, it must be ascertained that it is perof electrical excitation. The instrument consists of fectly clean and dry. The glass pillars, which support non-electrics and electrics, or, as they are with equal the cylinder and conductors, must be carefully wiped propriety termed, conductors and non-conductors; with an old silk-handkerchief. Dust and other impuso arranged that one part may be easily excited, and rities should be removed from every other part of the electricity made to accumulate on it, another part instrument; and the cushion and silk flep being first enabling us to give to the electricity so obtained any cleaned, the former must have a little fresh amalgan required direction, whilst a third effectually prevents spread on it. its escape to the earth, until the precise moment we As the energy of an electrical machine is increased may have determined on.

or diminished by the qualities of the amalgam applied Electrical machines are made of different forms. to it, we shall here give instructions for making that For ordinary purposes those of the most simple con- useful compound. struction are the most generally useful; of which there Take equal parts, by weight, of tin and zinc, melt are two kinds—the cylindrical, and the plate, machine. them together in a crucible, or common iron ladle, The former of these we shall first describe. It is made and pour them upon three parts, by weight, of mercury, of various sizes; but we shall give the dimensions of in a wooden box, which must be shaken until the the principal parts of one, which, by many years' metals are cold. When required for use, the amalgam practice, we know to be most convenient for experi- must be pulverized, in a mortar, to a very fine powder, mental illustration.

mixed with a small quantity of tallow or hog's lard, Let A in the preceding figure represent a cylinder (we prefer tallow), and thinly spread on the cushion of glass, say about twelve inches in diameter, and by means of a blunt knife. twenty or twenty-four inches long. It must be made Now let us return to the machine, which we suppose as nearly as possible of an equal thickness through to be properly cleaned and amalgamated; but which out its whole length, and the nearer it approaches to will disappoint our expectations, when we begin to a perfect cylinder the better. The ends must be some operate with it, if the atmosphere of the rcom where what thicker than the sides, with which they should it is placed be not warm and comparatively dry, form an angle of about 10°.

:-B B are glass pillars Many persons are in the habit of placing an electrical firmly secured to a thick piece of mahogany, or some machine opposite a fire previous to using it,-a plan other hard wood, which should be about three feet we have never adopted, and which we consider as long by two feet nine inches broad. The cylinder is injudicious as it is unnecessary. With the utmost mounted on these pillars, between which it revolves care it sometimes happens that by unequally heating on an axis at each end; motion being communi- the machine, either the cylinder or glass pillars are

[ocr errors]

fractured ; whilst there is always the risk of softening points. That part of the conductor most distant from the ceinent, and thus deranging some of the most im- the plate terminates in a large hollow sphere of brass, portant parts of the instrument.

which has one or more holes in it for connecting the In cold weather there should be a fire in the room machine with various kinds of apparatus.

The conin which we propose to perform electrical experiments, ductor is insulated, and sustained in its place by a and the whole of the apparatus should be placed in the large rod of glass, D. room, so that it may be all of the same temperature The plate machine, as here described, is not so well as the surrounding atmosphere. The doors, and es-adapted for illustrating the principles of the science pecially the windows, of the room, should also be of electricity as that of the cylindrical form. By a kept closed. At other seasons of the year, unless the very trifling alteration, or rather addition, it may, external atmosphere is more than ordinarily damp, however, be rendered equally useful. But this differa fire in the room is not required; but the windows ence in the construction of the instruments will be must not be opened.

better understood, when we have said something about It is by some persons recommended that the glass the methods of using them. pillars and ends of the cylinder of the electrical machine should be coated with a resinous composition, resembling sealing-way. This we consider a defect, It is a poor philosophy and a narrow religion, which rather than an improvement. If the different parts does not recognise God as all in all. Every moment of the instrument are properly proportioned, and of our lives, we breathe, stand, or move in the temple of judiciously combined, there is no difficulty in rendering the Most High; for the whole universe is that temple. it effective; and the less encumbered the glass, or Wherever we go, the testimony to His power, the impress of other parts, are with cement or varnish, the more

His hand, are there. Ask of the bright worlds around us. easily can they be kept clean, and the more promptly and they shall tell you of Him, whose power launched them

as they roll in the everlasting harmony of their circles ; may the machine be got into action.

on their courses. Ask of the mountains, that lift their In its essential arrangements, the plate machine heads among and above the clouds; and the bleak summit : resembles that we have been describing; and with of one shall seem to call aloud to the snow.clad top of

this advantage, that it is more simple in its construe- another, in proclaiming their testimony to the Agency, tion, more easily excited, and can be cleaned and kept

which has laid their deep foundations. Ask of ocean's

waters; and the roar of their boundless waves shall chant : in action with less labour. It is here represented.

from shore to shore a hymn of ascription to that Being, who hath said, 'Hitherto shall -ye come and no further.' Ask of the rivers; and, as they roil onward to the sea, do they not bear along their ceaseless tribute to the everworking Energy, which struck open their fountains and poured them down throngh the valleys ? Ask of every region of the earth, from the burning equator to the icy

pole, from the rock-bound coast to the plain covered with E

its luxuriant vegetation; and you will not find on them all B


the record of the Creator's presence ? Ask of the countless tribes of piants and animals: and shall they not testify to the action of the great Source of Life? Yes, from every portion, from every department of nature, comes the same

voice: everywhere we hear Thy name, O God; everywhere E

we see Thy love. Creation, in all its length and breadth, in all its depth and height, is the manifestation of thy Spirit, and without Thee the world were dark and dead.

The universe is to us as the burning bush which the F

Hebrew leader saw: God is ever present in it, for it burns with His glory, and the ground on which we stand is always holy.

How then can we speak of that Presence as peculiarly in the sanctuary, which is abroad through all space and time?-FRANCIS.

[ocr errors]

Take heed that thou seek not riches basely, nor attain

them by evil means; destroy no man for his wealth, nor A is a circular glass plate, say twenty-four inches in take anything from the poor: for the cry and complaint diameter, and about one-fourth of an inch thick; made thereof will pierce the heavens. And it is most detestable as true as possible, and mounted on an axis passing before God, and most dishonourable before worthy men to through its centre, which is supported at each end by wrest anything from the needy and labouring soul. God a strong frame-work of mahogany, securely fixed to will never prosper thee in aught, if thou offend therein: a broad base of the same material. Motion is given and their children to add superfluity and needless expenses

but use thy poor neighbours and tenants well, pine not them to the plate by turning the winch, F. B B are cushions to thyself. He that hath pity on another man's sorrow, or rubbers, made in the same manner as that for the shall be free from it himself; and he that delighteth in, cylindrical machine, but of a different shape; and and scorneth the misery of another, shall one time or other there are four of them connected in pairs to the top fall into it himself. Remember this precept, “ He that. and bottom of the frame of the instrument, so as to press Lord will recompense him what he hath given.", I do not

mercy on the poor lendeth unto the Lord, and the equally on both sides of the plate. This is effected by understand those for poor, which are vagabonds and beggars, means of a spring-frame, centre-pins, and adjusting- but those that labour to live, such as are old and cannot screws. E E are silk flaps attached to the rubbers, travel, such poor widows and fatherless children as are and united at their edges, so as to keep them in their ordered to be relieved, and the poor tenants that

travail to places at the sides of the plate. c is the prime con- pay their rents, and are driven to poverty by mischance, ductor, made of brass, about an inch in diameter, and and not by riot or careless expenses : on such have thou somewhat of an elliptical form. It extends entirely compassion, and God will bless thee for it. Make not the across the plate, forming a curve at a considerable if he curse thee in the bitterness of his soul, his prayer

hungry soul sorrowful, defer not thy gift to the needy, for distance from it, and receives the electricity by pieces shall be heard of Him that made him.Sir WALTER returned at each end, which are furnished with steel RALEIGH,

« ZurückWeiter »