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Bernard, and the unmistakable attitude of the English people, have since convinced the Emperor of the French that no bullying of generals or colonels of Pretorian Guards or cohorts can appal us or induce our Legislature to change our system at foreign dictation. Not that we will shelter assassins, or favour assassination; but that we cannot and will not be responsible for the acts of strangers driven by political persecution from their own country, and who, during a temporary sojourn here, concoct schemes which they seek to carry into effect in France.
Since these events reasonable English opinion appears to have re-acted on France. In the metropolis, two able opposition Members, MM. Ollivier and Jules Favre, have been returned, and in the Haut Rhin a man against whom all the concentrated power of despotism was exerted has beaten the Government candidate. Count Migeon was written against, not merely by the Prefect of the Rhine, but the Minister of the Interior, General Espinasse, the military favourite and confidante of the Emperor, took the field against him by a Home Office missive, stinging, direct, and personal. Nevertheless, M. Migeon was triumphantly returned, despite Prefect, Minister, and Emperor, marshalled in tripled array.
The great props of the present Government are the army and the priests. But the army abandoned the conqueror of Lodi and Austerlitz, abandoned Louis XVIII., abandoned Charles X., abandoned Louis Philippe, abandoned the Republic, and helped to consummate the Coup d'Etat of 1851 which made an emperor. So soon as that emperor ceases to be the slave and servant of the army it will abandon him for some new instrument.
The priests have ever been the servile instruments of any existing authority, with a view ultimately to gain the mastery. In the time of the League they flung themselves at the feet of Philip II. ; when Napoleon became emperor they hailed his presence as they did the return of the Bourbons. So soon as the Revolution of 1830 was consolidated they fawned on Louis Philippe. In 1848 they prostrated themselves to the republic, planting and blessing trees of liberty; and in 1852 they most servilely saluted the autocracy of Louis Napoleon with the loudest acclaim. Should reverses now come on him, or his star wane, this servile clergy would turn to Henry V., to the Count de Paris, or to a republican president, with as volti subito a movement as on any former occasion.
The exacerbation of the military against civilians discloses a still worse state of things than any arising from hostile elections. It would now appear, as in the earlier days of the first empirethat society is divided into two camps--the military and the
The Military Power as opposed to the Civil. 179 civil; or, as the Sabreurs and Dragoons of 1804-5 phrased it, into Militaires and Pequins, the latter being a word of ignominious contempt. Fifty-four years ago the latter word was applied by a Sabreur to Talleyrand, who asked him why he was so designated ? 'I call Pequin,' said the representative of brute force, every man who is not military.' 'Et moi,' (said Talleyrand), j'appelle militaire tout ce qui n'est pas civil.' The brutal and overbearing insolence of the military is now unendurable in France. It is the more intolerable from the fact that the officers are, for the most part, neither men of education, birth, nor manners; but men sprung from the ranks, with the instincts of a vulgar class, favoured and petted at the expense and to the detriment of the intelligence, the education, and the birth and wealth of the nation. This is a fearful state of things. If not speedily checked, it must lead to civil war, and to complete social disorganization. In a late deplorable duel, forty-three Sabreurs, officers in the army, had inscribed their names to fight a contributor to the Figaro Journal, M. de Pene. The worst feature in the case is, that the victor in this duel and his seconds have been feasted by the officers of more than one regiment, as though it were a gallant deed to express one's readiness to shoot down one's own countrymen. An army such as this, in number 600,000 men, and so officered, it will be difficult to restrain or keep in hand. If France abstains under these circumstances from attacking Austria or Italy, from marching into Belgium, or from attempting to invade England, it will certainly not be owing to the prudence of the Emperor or his advisers. No sane man in England has a wish for war, and every serious and reflective politician among us desires an alliance and co-operation for European objects with the enlightened public opinion of France; but that is a widely different thing from yielding to the bullying of pampered pretorians, who will not allow the law of France to take its course in the case of Lieutenant Hyenne. This man, who, if M. de Pene dies, will certainly be his murderer, is not to be prosecuted. He is free to pursue his military career, and to enjoy the esteem of that army which approves of his conduct. A worse feature than this is disclosed by the pardon of another military criminal, de Mercy, who had forfeited his life. He was found guilty, by two successive courts martial, of having
, treacherously inveigled a brother officer into quarters for the purpose of murdering him ; and the evidence proved that he had hung up the sword with which he committed the deed, and laid the foils upon the floor, to give colour to a false pretence, that they had been fencing. This great criminal, in deference to the army, is granted his life. Had he been a civilian, the guillotine would have made short work of him. These are truths which must be told for the safety of Europe—for the salvation of France. They are the utterances of freemen who have no wish for broil, but who do not now ask—who will never ask from a ruler of France—the permission of looking at things as they really exist, and estimating them as they really are.
We cannot, moreover, in England close our eyes to the fact that France is arming on a scale and with a system and celerity formidable to Europe-most formidable to ourselves. She is arming not by land merely, but by sea, at a time and in a season when she has completed a rail to that Cherbourg on which millions and millions have been expended since the days of Louis XV.; that Cherbourg called by a minister of that monarch the Hotel of the Channel ;' that Cherbourg whose works are just now completed-works which command the chops of our own Channel at a time when we are without a Channel fleet. These are the things that make us anxious, quite irrespective of the creation of a French steam fleet in which every new improvement is developed.
Nothing within France justifies this preparation and outlay. She has no colonies beyond her frontier to protect or to defend, and no Power in Europe thinks of attacking her at home. Her finances are in no flourishing condition-her commerce and navigation are languishing, and securities of all kinds, whether Credit Mobilier, Orleans, Southern, Northern, or Western Railway shares, are at a fearful depreciation. Why, therefore, should these expensive preparations be made, if not for aggression, if not to gratify that army of which the Emperor is the child and the champion ? War is generally heralded in France by some act of spoliation and arbitrary power; and certainly none can be more tyrannous in conception or execution than the scheme by which it is sought to gain possession of twenty millions of charitable property at present invested in lands, but which General Espinasse, the late Minister of the Interior, holds should be turned into ready-money. Straws, as Lord Bacon says, show what way the wind blows; and so this attempt at despoiling the widow and the orphan may indicate the intentions of an Emperor whose words would ever be a doubt were they not explained by his acts and deeds. We are forewarned : let us also be forearmed in time. It may be urged that the resignation of Espinasse on June 15, implies a change of policy, more especially as a civilian and a lawyer, M. Delangle, is appointed in his stead. We trust it may
But until France ceases to be governed by five military Pashas, England and Europe require to be watchful that they be not surprised as France was on the 2nd of December, 1851.
Art. VII.- Five Sermons, preached before the University of Cam
bridge. By RICHARD CHENEVIX TRENCH, D.D., Dean of Westminster. 12mo. London: John W. Parker and Son.
The position of Dr. Trench, as a divine, is somewhat perplexing to persons who are always disposed to classify their fellow Christians under certain special designations--designations meant to be expressive of honour or reproach, according to circumstances. This eminent person can by no means be accounted a Rationalist, though he bears the suspicious mark of being a good German scholar, and certainly owes much to his extensive and careful reading in that language. Nor can he be called a Tractarian, though his tastes in regard to the literature of theology and ecclesiastical history, and to literature generally, present much in common with that school. Nor can he be said to have his place with the Evangelical clergy as that body is generally known, though he manifestly retains the great substance of their doctrine, divested, indeed, of the shibboleths and mannerisms of that party. From no section in the Church of England is Dr. Trench more separated than from the old high and dry orthodox section, a party, we presume, which is now pretty nearly extinct, and which can have left but few mourners behind it. Our ecclesiastical Romanticists, who are popularly known under the name of Puseyites, have taken the place of the last-mentioned school; and could they have managed to keep their romancings from running into those puerile fancies which have disfigured their proceedings, they might, with all their faults, have been an unquestionable improvement on the school they have displaced. The history of the Tractarian party shows that there were tastes and wants in the public mind which neither the Evangelicals nor the Orthodox knew how to meet. The province of art in regard to religion is a very important one, and its claims in this respect cannot be long suppressed. Romanism abused it, and Protestantism in consequence disowned it. But the reaction became excessive, unnatural, and was sure to give place in its turn to larger and more genial influences. There is no human capacity to which religion should not give its object to the sensibility and to the imagination, no less than to the understanding. It is only a partially developed humanity that can be content with a partially developed Christianity. It belongs to a real manhood in these things not to suppress any faculty or susceptibility of the soul, but to assign its due place, and its true object to each.
Dr. Trench is where he is as a Churchman, for the same reason that not a few men are where they are as Nonconformists. He is, upon the whole, more in his place, according to his own convictions, in being a Churchman, than he would be in any other connexion. With many Nonconformists the case is precisely thus. The pretence, that by ceasing to be Churchmen, we cease to conform to anything we disapprove, is ridiculous. Every thoughtful man, whatever be his church connexion, conforms to måny lesser things which he does not approve, for the sake of the greater things with which they are connected, and of which he does approve. The adjuncts of a sect, which have come from the accidents of the past, are one thing ; its great principles, which have come from inspiration, are another. God forbid that one's acceptance of the latter should be understood as implying approval of all that may be included in the former. The great error of the Church of England has been, not in requiring conformity, but in requiring the profession of approval beside. Apart from this material point, the question about conformity or nonconformity, as between the two great parties, would be simply a question of degree, for we all conform to things which are not to our mind for the sake of other things to which we attach great value. Gentlemen at St. Stephen's are sometimes disposed to pride themselves on being 'independent members. But it is not only our legislative bodies that include such members; they exist in all our leading ecclesiastical bodies; and as these bodies become more enlightened, they will feel less difficulty in ceding space to such independence.
With admirable feeling and judgment, Dr. Trench appears to have appropriated what is best in the several sections of the Church of England, without directly identifying himself with any one of them. This is not the course to be taken by any man ambitious of notoriety in the way of party leadership. Too commonly such men buy their ascendency at costs to which no mind possessing a high sense of truthfulness and honour could submit. In the history of parties, the leaders and the led are too often the tools and slaves of each other. There are minds which cannot breathe in such an atmosphere, and the mind of Dr. Trench seems to be of this order. We must confess that this circumstance disposes us to look with interest to everything of a religious character proceeding from his pen.
We come to it expecting to find in it the fruit of retired, calm, independent, and Christian thought-not so much a theme addressed to a sect, as a truly Catholic message, designed for God's universal Church.
These five discourses, 'preached before the University of Cambridge,' have a consecutiveness in their subjects. The titles are