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you and the corn-leaguers next pro- toriously under no self-restraint, and ceeded to arson; from that to murder, capable of savage cruelties unknown many times attempted, But these amongst men trained to honourable felonies, you will say, were committed warfare, Generally, it ought not to upon those whom you viewed as ene. be expected of those to whose customies. How, then, did you treat your dy are consigned great libraries or friends ? Fellow chartists and leaguers, galleries of art, that they should risk fellow spinners and weavers, you as- such priceless property on a very saulted-drove violently from work- doubtful contest, when by a small ordered them instantly to plunge their bribe they can purchase immunity families into destitution; and in the from bazard. When a network of event of their returning without leave, defence is once thrown over the whole you sent messages to them by express district, it becomes the duty of each delegates, that you would cudgel them private mansion to co-operate, at some soundly.
risk, with the public system ; after Behold the children of liberty-be- that, it would be weakening the hands hold the insurgents for the reign of of the executive power to collude with justice! And, if the Chartists reply, the robbers by any private treaty : but • Oh! but we were coerced, we could until the public system of defence is not act with freedom.” Exactly so, broughtinto a state of maturity for meawe reply; nobody knows at present suring itself at all points against the which felony, out of any particular insurgent power, each solitary house is dozen, was committed by a Chartist, remitted to its own discretion for making and which by a Corn- Leaguer. Each the best terms it can with an overwhelm. will state the proportions as nine and ing superiority of force. No such three, nine for the other party, three excuse, however, applies to the case for his own. Bit is not this the ge- of large towns, who are always, by neral moral of all such cases ? What their professional police, or by a police bas now happened will always happen. speedily created for the occasion, preAlways there will be an anarchy; re- sumably equal to the task of maintain. sponsibility will cease ; and that is ing the avenues to their own streets made the very excuse, wbich is the against vagabond intruders from strange last aggravation of guilt to the offend- places. Even more-it might have ing leaders.
been expected of individual houses in There are other features in these such towns, that they should not let fearful manifestations of anti-social down baskets of provisions from their power, which at another time will call
All did not adopt for exemplary notice and inquisition, this measure. It seems, therefore, in both by the press and by the govern- any case to have been adopted not ment. In particular, we observe with upon a ground of necessity. mob horror the aid given and often volun- of many thousands, in their hurried teered by numerous private families. transit, could neither be detained by The Times, we see, mentions as a vengeance before any individual house special case, that of Haigh Hall, a in a long street, where many houses seat of Lord Balcarras, near Wigan. beside had given the same affront by a In this instance we suspend our opi- refusal ; nor could such a mob, with nion, because there is a standing pre- no common officers to connect one sumption in excuse for every lonely part of its vast line with another, be house, such as a nobleman's mansion at all propitiated in fact by a loaf is pretty sure to be, that any act of given to the leading gang, and refused the sort is extorted by reasonable ter- to all in their rear. The benefit, ror. A small establishment may hap- therefore, to the individual house must pen to be in residence at a very great be merely imaginary; whilst on the house ; and even in a great establish- other hand, the injury to the public ment, such as may be looked for at service is great, and, by its example, Trentham, (the Duke of Sutherland's,) unlimited. For the case stands prewhich is at the other extreme of the cisely thus :~Against the passive reinsurgent district, but a small part is sistance of an insurgent body, confelikely to be armed ; and a still small. derated on the principle of not worker fitted for a service of danger pecu- ing, there would naturally be no remedy liarly terrific: mobs, and especially whatever open to the government, were under any wild persuasion that they it not that mere necessity of food for are exacting “vengeance," being no- themselves and food for their families, surely and swiftly brings round a re- a beginning. Then indeed our hearts medy, thus closing a period of idleness grow sterner in contemplating their which is else sure, of itself, without matchless insolence and criminal folly. inflammatory politics, to prove the But in any case, it is for their own mother of infinite mischief. How con- interest that a speedy close should set cisely this remedy acts, and in how bounds to their career. Now the conbrief a number of days it gathers tributions of shopkeepers and private strength, may be seen by the follow- families, but much more the system of ing simple calculation:--Every forty certain provision shops in the smaller thousand turn-outs will reqre a thou- towns, hy which they pledge themselves sand pounds a day to feed them, at to loans or credit, varying in amount sixpence a-day, and their families, as through one fortnight or upwards in stationary, and able to use more eco- time, and most of all the system adnomy, at least the same sum. Here opted by a number of shops in Hyde, at once arises a demand of L.28,000 promising publicly (we quote their for each 40,000 insurgents during one own words literatim) “ to assist pecufortnight. It is supposed that 200,000, niary or otherwise," meaning proor five şuch bodies of 40,000 each, are bably to assist by pecuniary means or now self-exiled from work; that is, in any other, seems entitled to the graother words, a money demand of one vest judicial investigation : because hundred and forty thousand pounds this aid and “comfort," as the ancient will be made on the joint-stock purse laws call it, tends violenily to prolong of the insurrection by the end of the the struggle by weakening its natural first fortnight (now nearly accom- restraint; and because the Hyde vaplished) for the insufficient support of riety of this case tends more effectuihe insurgents. Here lies à firm ally to that result, by publishing far natural curb-chain upon the riotous and wide the knowledge of so encoubody; in which overwhelming re- raging a faith in the justice and the straint, let us say for ourselves, that ultimate success of the rioters. Were we are far indeed from exulting when it not for these extensive private conwe think of the rioters as poor men tributions, the funds of the rioters pleading for natural rights, against would be limited to the sums accu. cotton masters too often inclined to mulated by the benefit societies, to combine for severe exaction, and which multitudes among them have sometimes (we doubt not) tyrannically contributed; and where the purpose rapacious. If we feel at any moment had been entirely under a private inclined to exult in such a barrier ex. agreement, the money will have been isting to the progress of a riotous easily diverted into any other channel mob, it is when we reflect on the cer. by an overruling majority; though tainty with which an idle mob trans- often we believe that want of work is migrates into a cruel and sanguinary the very casus fæderis contemplated mob, fearful even to themselves, as by such societies. These accomplices parts bearing a separate interest from in higher stations ought, of all conthe whole ; but still more, when we cerned, to be the most severely punrepresent to ourselves this mob—not ished, or at least next after the origi. as contending for undoubted rights, or nal instigators of the riots, if they natural equities on the model of all should judicially be proved to have Scriptural justice, (such as the rights been the Corn-Leaguers. And in the of colliers to see their own day's pro- rear of these two cold-blooded accomduce of coal fairly weighed in their plices before the act and in the act, own presence)-but insolently declar. as regards scrutiny and punishment, ing that they will abrogate the whole should be ranged all those who have constitution, laws, and polity of these been arrested, or shall be denounced imperial kingdoms at one blow; will and convicted, as coercers of their own impose upon us all a new constitution, brethren who had wished to pursue out of which are to emanate such fu- their work in quietness. fure laws as may be suitable to such
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We have at length arrived at the to a new source of power; that, abantenth and closing volume of Mr Ali- doning the old and formal influences son's able and important work; and, of the state, they adopted influences while we congratulate the writer on altogether new; that, abandoning the the intelligence which conceived, the old official organs of national imtalent which sustained, and the vigour pression, they spoke directly to the which completed such a performance, multitude. Leaving thrones and we still more congratulate the coun- hierarchies to their stately ineffitry on the possession of one of the ciency, they turned their faces at noblest offerings which our age has once to the vast aggregate who stood laid upon the altar of historic lite- without the walls of palace and temrature.
ple, and who answered them with a The choice of the subject itself was shout, which in the former instance highly judicious. It gave great op- shook superstition in its strongholds, portunities to a writer capable of and in the latter loosened the foundaemploying them. The French Revo. tions of all established rule.
But lution was the most influential event here the similitude ends. The Refore since the Reformation. In its magni- mation was the greatest gift of Protude, its depth of appeal to buman vidence since the establishment of opinions, the extent to which it im- Christianity ; the French Revolution pressed the old European system, and the most reckless display of human the strong impulse which it has given guilt since the supremacy of Rome. to the minds of nations, there is a The one was an illustrious example singular resemblance to the prime of those interpositions by which the mover of the sixteenth century. Their Supreme Disposer condescends from principles alone differ, and the differ- time to time to invigorate man, willence, in that point, is obviously ex- ing, but too weak, for virtue. The treme; but their instrumentality has latter was an example of that rea remarkable similitude. The same morseless and precipitate rapidity element which sweeps away the har- with which man, left to the guidance vest and the soil, is the source of all of the passions, plunges into public fertility. The furrow torn up by the and personal ruin. thunderbolt differs little in appear
But the advantages of the Revoluance from the tillage of the plough. tion as a subject of authorship, are The especial characteristic of both more striking than those of the Reforwas, that they addressed themselves mation. It was a complete event,
History of Europe, from the Commencement of the French Revolution in 1789, to the Restoration of the Bourbons in 1815. By ARCHIBALD ALison. Vol. x.
VOL. LII. NO. CCCXXIV.