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illiberal, would by this time have secured their promotion, and converted a proportion of colonels into major-generals. But the warrant not only retards their advancement: it inflicts upon them a more intolerable wrong, by raising their juniors over their heads, as lieutenant-colonels who have commanded corps, &c, are, after three years, promoted to be colonels. The grievance is succinctly described by Colonel Lindsay in these words:—" That officers who had risen to the rank of lieutenant-colonel before the 20th of June, 1854, under the established rule of the service, have been, by a sudden alteration of system, and by a new rule made after their promotion to that rank, passed over and superseded by lieutenant-colonels junior to them, who have had the good fortune to come within the provisions of the new rule." Colonel Lindsay proceeds to establish his case by reviewing, in the first place, the system of promotion which existed previous to the warrant, and then passing on to the regulations subsequently introduced. It is possible that the commissioners intended these changes to be carried out in the old spirit of compromise. But, under the regime of the War Department, the authorities adhere to the letter of the warrant, and strict retrospective action is insisted on. The Minister-for-War can hardly be blamed for this rigour: the fault rests, not with the administrator, but with the framers of the system. We trust, however, that Colonel Lindsay's lucid exposition of the facts will attract the attention of Lord Panmure, and lead to some amelioration, if not an entire revision, of the obnoxious provisions of the warrant, which every day becomes more intolerable and more unpopular.
Harbours Of Refuge.—The debate in the House of Commons on Dover harbour has brought forward our gallant contributor, R. P., with some further observations on his favourite topic; but, on the present occasion, he confines himself to the question of situation, and leaves untouched the not less important subject of construction. We may hope, therefore, that the statements of Mr. Henley in the debate of the 3rd, if not the able letters of Mr. Brooks, which have from time to time appeared in our pages (and have since been published in a separate form) have satisfied him that the plan adopted at Dover, of proceeding by an upright wall, has proved an egregious failure. Mr. Henlet affirms that no less than 200 tons of stones have been washed out of their beds by the waves, though chained and clamped together in the strongest manner. We may add that many of these blocks weighed four and five tons. The hon. member asked if the Government, after the experience they had acquired, could give the House any assurance that the work would proceed at a more rapid rate than was exhibited by the present maximum of 50 feet a year, which involves a cost of about £1,000 a foot. Surely he must have looked on the First Lord as Canute, with power over the wind and waves; and we can only wish that Sir Chablks Wood would take his easy-chair, and have himself wheeled down to the breakwater, just as a gale of wind was blowing, when he would soon be convinced that, in prosecuting this chimerical undertaking, he is simply throwing good money after bad, laying up a treasure at the bottom of the sea. Mr. Henley calculates that, at the
present rate of progress, the work may be finished in 150 or 200 years; but we cannot share his sanguine expectations. Our firm belief is that it will never be finished; and Mr. Brooks has shown that it could be of no use, even if it were brought to completion, as the deposition of silting will utterly choke it up long before the two centuries of construction have expired. But ere we limit the period of construction to any term, we must learn to chain the winds and waves more effectually than we now do the blocks of granite. It was said that the waves had no percussive force, and, consequently, that the upright wall would present an immovable barrier. Sir Howard Douglas exposed the fallacy of this conclusion, and showed what must be the result of the action of the sea. Mr. Walkkk, whose various reports form a strange history, now states that the masonry was unable to withstand the repeated shocks of the waves. This is but a tardy admission of Sir Howard's theory, which, in fact, could no longer be denied; for all which that great authority predicted has been realized. Mr. Brooks has also proved his case, in a manner that bears high testimony to his practical knowledge and professional attainments. Still the works at Dover are pushed on, or rather are kept going, though Mr. Walker, in his report of 1855, candidly acknowledges that he is at great straits f' r a foundation. He has lost the hard chalk bottom, and has to dig 46 feet below the low-water mark of spring-tides for a base of sand and flints. Has Sir Cuarles Wood never heard of a certain tower that was built upon sand, and the wind came and the waves beat, and the tower fell, and great was the fall thereof? Such, we fear, will be the final end, as it is the present experience of the Dover masonry, though not till it has absorbed more millions than would build a score of durable breakwaters. But the Admiralty authorities cling as tenaciously to their upright wall as they do to the Transit, unconscious that both must be given up. Yet this is the leek they will have to eat at last.
The New Inspector-general.—Lieutenant-General Sir Frederick Love, K.C.B., has been appointed Inspector-General of Infantry; and perhaps a better selection could not have been made from the whole army. Sir Frederick began his military career as the pupil of General Sir John Moore, in the camp of instruction at Shorncliffe, where the celebrated light division was organized by that first-rate soldier. As an officer of the 52nd Light Infantry, General Love served at Corunna and throughout the Peninsular war, and at Waterloo. He also served in the American campaign, and had two horses shot under him at New Orleans. Having been the personal friend of Generals Gibbs and Fakenhaii, both killed on that day, he accompanied their bodies to England, and thus was in time for the campaign of 1815. Ashe has always been a regimental officer, educated in the best regimental school under Sir John Moore, there is no General Officer in the service more intimately acquainted with all the minutiae and interior economy of a regiment in all its details, branches, and bearings. In every particle of drill, with or without arms, recruit company or battalion, he is as aufait as any adjutant in the service. All this experience eminently fits him for the appointment of Inspector-General of Infantry, a post for which an officer trained only in the Guards never can he qualified, for, as in the Guards the whole of the interior economy and internal arrangements are left to the sole superintendence of the sergeants, from this cause a General Officer who has served only in the Guards is quite unqualified to inspect regiments of the line, as a District General. Cavalry Generals are equally unfit; hence the necessity of an Inspector General of Infantry, an arrangement long imperatively called for.
Cuthbeut St. Elme, M.P.; or, Passages In The Lira of A Politician.
This novel is published anonymously, but is evidently the production of a practised hand. The subject is fruitful of interest, and is treated in a popular and attractive manner. Let no one think, however, that the story is confined to the narrow limits of political life, as ordinarily developed; though even that field, after all the labours of Disraeli and others, is not yet exhausted. It is true, we have had politicians represented in all sorts of situations, and their careers traced from beginning to end ; hut have any of these narratives been a faithful delineation of political life? Such a performance would indeed demand the hand of a master, and one thoroughly conversant with the highest circles in the country. Dickens's brilliant picture of the circumlocution office is the nearest approach we have had to the truth ; but it is too rough-hewn, and not sufficiently elaborated. The jobbery, corruption, and utter want of principle that form a part of the daily life of our political characters,and more particularly of persons in authority, have yet to be exposed. Something is done towards the end by the volumes before us. The author is evidently familiar with the circles he describes. He shows, by various indications, that he has been behind the scenes, and has even mixed in the more exciting strife of continental politics. From such sources he draws ample materials for an interesting fiction. The principal female characters are taken fiom fashionable society, and are made the medium of introducing us to some good scenes illustrative of social follies and vices. Lady Norah is the best of these creations. She is sketched with some power, and is a prominent figure in the story—offering a sad example of the remorse and wretchedness entailed by one false step ; which almost invariably leads to other and greater derelictions, ending in disgrace and ruin. But we trust our readers will peruse the book themselves, and form their own opinion of its merits.
The Autoriography Of Elizabeth Davis, a Balaklava Nurse, Daughter of Dafydd Cadwallader. Edited by Janet Williams. 2 vols. Mrs. Davis has seen a great deal of the world, originally in an humble way, and latterly amidst the trying scenes of a military hospital, on the now historic soil of Balaklava. With something of the garrulity of declining life, and a spice of Welsh superstition, she tells her story from first to last in a manner that cannot fail to interest and amuse. Indeed, her very imperfections constitute a little picture of human character. The fair editor has had a difficult task to perform, in taking down, at odd times, the different details of so chequered a life, related by such a gossip ; and afterwards throwing them into a distinct narrative. This, however, she has succeeded in accomplishing, and the result is these pleasant volumes. The account of Balaklava is particularly good, and presents a graphic sketch of hospital life. The appendix contains soms suggestions worthy of consideration by the medical authorities; and the remarks on the requisition system evince considerable knowledge of the subject. It is certain that our reforms in the Crimea have still left much to be done, and the suggestions of a practical nurse, with the experience of Scutari and Balaklava, are not to be despised. But such questions are too large to be discussed within our present limits, and we may safely leave them to another opportunity, wishing this amusing book, in the interim, all the success it deserves.
A Woman's Story. By Mrs. S. C. Hall. 3 vols.
Mrs. Hall is well known by the tales and sketches she has contributed to various popular periodicals, and which have acquired for her a wide reputation. Alter such success it is not wonderful that she should be tempted to make her appearance in three volumes, though this is by no means her initial essay in that guise. To the general reader there may seem, indeed, little to distinguish the novt list from the tale-writer, and one form of composition may appear as easy as the other; but, in point of fact, the difference is very great; and, though our successful novelists have proved themselves capital story-tellers, it is not always that the story-tellers shine as novelists. Miss Edgeworth, for one, broke down lamentably, and we might mention several living writers who have been equally detective. But it would be unfair to apply this remark to Mis. Hall. In these agreeable volumes she has acquitted herself with her wonted ability, and with all the iclat we could expect. The plot is constructed with considerable skill, is worked out with care, and is seldom wanting in action. Helen Lyndhurst, whose story it unfolds, is a character that excites the deepest interest, and commands the warmest sympathy. Her talents and personal beauty attract the attentions of Edward Hamilton, whose parents consent to their union, though her inferior position rather shocks their propriety. After a time, however, she discovers there is a slur on her birth, and sensible that this would never he overlooked by the proud family of her intended, she breaks off the engagement, frankly stating the motive for her conduct. Meanwhile, she has embraced the hard life of an author, and by her talents and industry creates a sensation iu the literary world. Mrs. Hall avails herself of the heroine's prolessional career to introduce reminiscences of her own contemporaries and acquaintances, and, among others, Moore and Scott are brought forward, giving peculiar interest to the passage. We perfectly agree in all she says of the malice, hatred, and envy that pervade literary society, which is, in truth, the greatest hotbed ofcliquism that ever existed. From such communion, our heroine turned eagerly to her friend Florence Middleton, who was engaged to Helen's half-brother, and plays a prominent part in the story. But here we are touching on tender ground. Those of our readers who would follow the /oitunes of Florence, or hear the end of Helen, must turn to the book itself, which has already become a favourite, and will Bo doubt make a permanent impression. As a picture of certain phases of society, it is true to nature, and, therefore, is sure to find a large circle of admirers.
The Eventful Voyage Of H.M. Discovery Ship Resolute To The Arctic Regions In Search Of Sir John Fiunklin. To which is added an Account of her being fallen in with by an American Whaler, &c By Georoe F. Mcdouoall, Master.
The name and story of the Resolute have acquired a world-wide renown, and it is a matter of surprise that we have not been presented before with an account of her memorable voyage. Here, however, at last, comes a faithful record, emanating from the pen of an able and accomplished officer, whose nautical skill and dauntless courage brought her through manifold perils; and it certainly leaves nothing to be desired. The volume is every way worthy of the subject, and it would be impossible to name a more stirring, or e picturesque narrative of maritime adventure. It shows us what B .ush sailors will dare, what they can endure, and what they will accomplish. The voyage was full of incident; and Captain Kellrlt,who held the command, shrank from no difficulty in seeking to carry out the miin purpose of the expedition ; while on the other hand he kept steadily in view the secondary object of discovery. Mr. McDougall follows the thread of events with singular perspicuity, never indulging in irrelevant digressions; and the result is, that we have the whole history of the Resolute, Iroin first to last, hrought into a moderate-sized volume. The work is embellished with beautiful plates, and altogether got up in a very superior style.
A Manual For Natal Cadets. By John Mcneill Boyd, Captain, R.N. This excellent manual is the production of a practical officer of well-known ability and experience, and is published under the sanction of the Lords of the Admiralty. It comprises a mass of valuable information, carefully digested, and admirably arranged. Naval Cadets will find the first steps in their profession made easy by mastering its contents, which, in so attractive a form, renders study as interesting as it is indisp' nsahle. The Admit ally could not have bestowed its patronage on a more useful work.
[With the view of promoting the interests of the Service, this department of the Magazine is open to all authentic communications, and, therefore, the Editor cannot hold himself responsible for the opinions expressed. — Ed. U. S. Mao.]
LIMITATION OF SERVICE IN STAFF APPOINTMENTS. To the Editor of the United Service Magazine.
Sib,—Not many years ago a most wholesome arrangement was arrived at as regards the duration of an officer's service in any one staff appointment.
The rule of limitation to five years which was then introduced has worked well, and has proved a healthful and satisfactory military reform.
This term of service enables the authorities to measure, with tolerable accuracy, an officer's merits; to decide on his re-employment in a like office, in a higher one, in one more suited to the nature of his abilities; or, it may be, to withhold a return to office in any very responsible position.
Now, it is difficult to conceive why the adoption of a like system should not prove beneficial it carried into practice with the regimental officer.
Why should the lieutenant-colonel, acting as deputy or assistant adjutant or quartermaster-general, be removed from his post, given another, or put on hall-pay, and his comrade of like rank in a regiment he retained in its command till time makes him a major-general? Surely it would work well to the service in general, and to the regiment in particular, if each lieutenant-colonel, after occupying such post for five, or it might be seven years, were, like the staffofficer, put aside for promotion, for other or higher employment, according as his character for efficiency, judgment, or usefulness, may have indicated.
The outlet would prove a boon to the senior officers of the corps, and prevent that stagnancy of promotion which, in times of peace, has often been so marring to a regiment's vitality.
The extension of this principle to the command of a regiment, and the promotion consequent on it, would go far to do away with the system of paying highly f',r promotion ; it would, too, strike at the root of what is injurious to any regiment, and what is generally the result of its going on for a long course of years under any one man's guidance. A regiment becomes " Colonel This's"