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There, the proud arch, Colossus-like, bestride, Yon glittering streams, and bound the chasing tide ; Embellished villas crown the landscape scene, Farms wave with gold, and orchards blush between, There shall tall spires, and dome-capt towers ascend, And piers and quays their many structures blend; While with each breeze approaching vessels glide, And northern treasures dance on every tide. Then there are the famous poems written in competition for the Chancellor's prize at Cambridge in 1829, by W. Mackworth Praed and William Charles Wentworth. Praed's gained the medal, but Wentworth's has obtained the firmest hold on the hearts of the Australian people, partly because Wentworth himself was an Australian born, and was the greatest man Australia has ever produced, and partly because of the felicity and exactitude with which it renders Australian sentiments. The foresight which marks this composition is no less remarkable than its rhythmic grace. Throughout the poem Australia is assured of a brilliant
But sweeter even than this to the proud Australian of to-day are Wentworth's closing lines, which breathe as truly the spirit of his patriotism now as they did when they were written:
And oh, Britannial should'st thou cease to ride
As I have begun with Wentworth I will go on with him ; for he heads our list, not only of poets, but of statesmen, philanthropists, and explorers. I have already mentioned his successful passage of the Blue Mountains in company with Blaxland and Lawson. After a distinguished career as a journalist (he was one of the founders of the Australian), and as a champion of the cause of the people, he was elected as one of the members for the city of Sydney. It was he who first secured for the colony the privilege of trial by jury, who brought to a triumphant issue the project for establishing a university in Sydney, and who secured respon sible government for the Colony. He died in England ; but his remains, by his own desire, were brought to Vaucluse, to rest by the waters of Port Jackson. Then there is the honoured name of Dr. John Dunmore Lang, who gave the first great impulse to immigration, and was the father of many internal reforms. I will mention further William Bland, who came to Sydney in 1814, under a sentence of seven years' transportation for having fought a duel, and to whom, next to Wentworth, Australia is indebted for the political institutions she now enjoys; Governor Lachlan Macquarie, one of the best of Governors, called the “Building Governor"; Sir Charles Cowper, several times Colonial Secretary and Premier of New South Wales, the pioneer of railway construction, the formation of the Naval Brigade and the Wolunteer force, and the introduction of municipal government into the larger towns; Sir John Robertson, statesman and land reformer; Sir James Martin, who first gave shape to a scheme of colonial defence; William Forster, one of the most high-minded men ever connected with Australia; Sir Henry Parkes, author of the Education Act; the gifted young orator and critic Daniel Henry Deniehy; William Timothy Cape, the famous teacher of Australian youth, who was afterwards in Parliament with five of his pupils; George Fife Angas, one of the founders of South Australia ; David Collins, first Governor of Tasmania, and historian of New South Wales; Sir George Grey, Governor, explorer, statesman, and historian of Australia and New Zealand; John Faulkner, “Father of the Colony of Victoria"; the great Sir John O'Shanassy, of Victoria; and the Right Hon. W. B. Dalley, the Australian Crator. Then there are the heroes of coast and land exploration in Australia—Bass, who discovered that Australia and Tasmania were separated by a strait; and Flinders, whose careful surveys and melancholy history are so well known; Oxley, who traced the course of the Macquarie river; Mitchell, who first opened up the Darling and “Australian Felix,” which is now the Colony of Victoria; Sturt, who pulled for 2,000 miles in a boat along the Australian rivers, and afterwards explored the Central Desert; Eyre, who, with a single black boy, made an astonishing journey round the great Australian Bight ; Leichhardt, who accomplished a journey of 8,000 miles amid incredible hardships; Burke and Wills, the first to cross the continent from south to north ; Hume, who performed the first overland journey from Sydney to Port Phillip; Grey (Sir George), the explorer of Western Australia; Landsborough, who crossed from the Gulf of Carpentaria to Melbourne; Giles, who made the journey overland from Queensland to West Australia; Forrest, who commanded an exploring expeVOL. X. 54
dition from Perth to Adelaide, and another from Champion Bay to the telegraph line to Port Darwin; and many others. These are the men who have made known to the world the vast extent and resources of Australia, and special honour should be done to them in this centenary year. Mention must also be made of the philanthropist, Challis, the donor of £200,000 to Sydney University; of Sir Charles Nicholson, founder of higher education in the colonies; of George Howe, the first editor and printer of the Sydney Gazette, now merged in the Sydney Morning Herald. As the Times has just been celebrating its centenary, it is appropriate to mention that Howe was originally employed on the Thunderer, but for some slight offence, which I leave the editor of the Times to drag to light, he was transported. In Sydney, however, he lived a thoroughly upright life, prospered greatly, and was respected by everybody. Australia has not always been so fortunate in her imported offenders. There was, for example, the notorious John Tawell. He was transported to Sydney in 1814 for forgery. He behaved himself so well that Governor Macquarie soon gave him a ticket of leave, and afterwards an emancipation ticket. Setting up in trade of various kinds, he rapidly grew rich, built a chapel for the Society of Friends, and emptied six hundred gallons of rum into Sydney Harbour to encourage temperance. After sixteen years he returned to England, and was executed in 1845 for poisoning his mistress' There is no doubt that during his whole life he was a hypocritical scoundrel. It is pleasant to turn from him to the honoured names—with which our list must close—of Macarthur and Macleay. Australia's roll of honour is indelibly written on the very face of the country. The names of the towns, streets, rivers, mountains, lakes, harbours, and capes of Australia are those of the men who have made her what she is ; and this practice has been followed to a greater extent in Australia than in any other country in the world. And so long as Port Phillip, Port Macquarie, Brisbane, the River Murray, the River Darling, Mount Sturt, Wentworth, Macarthur, &c., endure, so long will Australia preserve the memory of the great host of her early heroes. Two great questions rise uppermost in the mind in the contemplation of this century of achievement. What has been the effect on the history of the world of the settlement and development of Australia 2 and what, looking at the past, may we forecast as its future? Upon the first question I will only put the proposition that the addition of three hundred and fifty millions sterling to the gold of the world, to say nothing of the vast values of Australia's other products, must have had a potent influence on the condition of mankind and the course of trade and civilization. With regard to the second question, one or two facts may appear to supply a fairly solid basis for conjecture. It is as certain as anything in human affairs can be, that by the end of this century the Australian population will amount to at least ten millions. In twenty years it will probably be greater than that of the mother country. In fifty years, according to an official computation, Australia will be inhabited by fifty million souls. Now, the capacity of the continent for supporting a teeming population is beyond all question. The United States have a population of sixty millions, on an area of three million square miles, which is just the area of the Australian continent, exclusive of Tasmania and New Zealand. The climate is perfect. More rain falls in Australia than in England, and the irregularity of the rainfall is being redressed by storage and irrigation, while subterranean rivers have been discovered in parts of the country which were thought doomed to permanent sterility. The soil is fertile, and suitable for the cultivation of almost every crop. The mineral resources are inexhaustible, and especial attention should be directed to the vast deposits of coal which have been discovered. Here, then, we have all the conditions necessary for a growth so prodigious as scarcely to be conceived. America, when the War of Independence was declared, had a population somewhat less than Australia has now, and had settled a somewhat smaller area of her territory. Looking at the development of America since then, at the greater means of development we now possess in the various applications of steam and electricity, at the increased activity of human thought, at the far vaster scale on which industrial processes and commercial transactions are now carried on, at the progress of education and the spread of culture; looking at all these, what may we not imagine—nay, rather, what may we dare imagine—as the future of the still infant nation, whose hundredth birthday marks, after all, but one short stage of its life-journey?
THE degradation of public manners, one of the most lamentable and ominous symptoms of our time, seems to go on at an ever accelerating pace, and the contagion appears to be infecting those who ought to be preserved against its virus by birth, tradition, and culture. Mr. Wilfrid Blunt is a man distinguished by descent, by education, and by ability. He has enjoyed every advantage civilized society can bestow on a human being. Yet in the demoralizing atmosphere of politics, he appears capable of sinking to the level of the least favoured of the champions of Home Rule, and has not shrunk from accusing a man who was once his friend of an intention, not only deliberate but avowed, to murder his political opponents. In the days before Mr. Blunt made his last political change of front, he was a member of the Carlton Club, and there as elsewhere, no doubt, he frequently and familiarly met the present Chief Secretary for Ireland. On one of these occasions, Mr. Blunt now asserts, Mr. Balfour unfolded to him his scheme for breaking down resistance to the Crimes Act, by imprisoning those leaders of the Home Rule Party, to whose life incarceration would be fatal. Before Mr. Balfour knew, or could believe, that this allegation was sanctioned by Mr. Blunt, he naturally characterized it as a “ridiculous lie.” Unfortunately, Mr. Blunt has fathered the accusation. We are sorry, in one sense, to have to add that there is not an educated man alive who believes it: and we shall scarcely give ourselves the pains to point out how utterly incredible is the charge. The point we desire to insist on is that the corruption of public manners must have advanced far indeed before such a person could make such a statement, and expect it to gain credence. Another deplorable sign of the times is the wide-spread disposition to argue as though men are not bound to obey laws, though voted only yesterday, which it is their interest and their humour to disregard, and then to found upon this curious reasoning the conclusion that such law-breakers ought either not to be punished at all, or must be punished with extreme leniency. The whole sap and marrow of manliness must have gone out of a community that can think in this fashion. But, not content with extending compassion to the disorderly and the fractious, these same people take it as a