« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
pain. Our ignorance on this subject is not begins to find that they pay-pay, pay well. perhaps to be wondered at, when we con- What is more, the mere capitalist discorers Eider that philosophers, notwithstanding that his contemporary, who has taste and considerable experience, have not as yet knowledge in his brain, as well as gold in succeeded in forming a perfectly satisfactory | his pocket, doubles his money possessions theory of ordinary intoxication.
faster than he does, who has no intellectual The discovery of chloroform is one of the business to attend to; and thus the unskilled many proofs which we are daily receiving capitalist, like the unskilled laborer, stands of the advantage which is derived from the no chance in the competition with the skilled. modern method of applying the intellect to The result is, that the men who are now in the investigation of natural science, instead the van of British commerce and manufacof abusing it in visionary speculations. In tures are men of enlightened views and elethis discovery, the application of which to vated aims, and those who would not imi. the relief of mortal suffering has been de- tate or co-operate with them from sympathy nounced by superstition, as an infringement and confidence, are forced to do so through of piety, a truly Christian philosophy should very shame and the fear of losing what they surely discern a recompense of the pursuit already possess. They do not half like the of truth, conducted in the desire and affec. spirit of the age, but they yield to it, nevertion of good; and should behold an earnest theless, and in time will be moulded by.it, of similar rewards to follow upon perseve- and will be loth to see their children inrance in the same course and spirit. Who fluenced by the spirit of the coming age, as knows to what extent the revelation of Na | it is their destiny to be. Without adequate ture's secrets may progressively increase the knowledge, and without faith in the progress amount of human comfort and happiness ? of humanity, such men sbrink from calling -seeing in how large a measure the know. up any reasonable picture of the state of ledge of chloroform has stilled the shriek of things likely to grow up out of the work of agony and pain, which is so direful a discord this present generation. If any one present in the still sad music of humanity.”
to their minds some idea of this, they do not know what to make of it.
Such a man I talked with recently, as I
stood on the bridge over the Serpentine, From “ Sharpe's Magazine."
looking at the elegant fabric that rose like THE CRYSTAL PALACE. an exhalation before us. His talk set me
thinking of the “unkuown future," and“ the “ Then I gazed into the Future far as human eye
good old times," as he called them. While can see,
he went on with melancholy forebodings and Suw the vision of the World, and all the won- | vague visionary fears, I was calling up a ders that would be."-Locksley Hall. | picture of the past, and making him figure
in it in a way he little suspected-good man The vision of the future is vast and bril. and merchant as he is. I will tell you what liant enough to sate the imagination of the I was thinking of, reader, provided you promost poetic among us; and how men who mise never to divulge the matter to my pride themselves ou being very sober and practical friend, who wonders “how all this practical are reconciled to the necessity for nonsense of universal exhibiting and prointroducing visions of fairy land into the miscuous visiting of foreigners will end !" every-day business of life, we are amused to and “what our sensible forefathers would think. Surely they are a little frightened think of that silly glass toy !" at heart, and could very well dispense with Closing my eyes for a moment, I opened the beauty and brilliancy of the prospect them again, and looked around. The place opening before them and their children's was the same, “but with a difference." It children. Beauty and brillianoy-the Fine was Hyde Park, not as it is now, but as it Arts, and the Pleasing Manufactures---do was nineteen hundred years ago. All marks not seem sound, substantial investments for of civilization were gone. Park, roads, bridge, the British capitalist; yet, strange to say, Serpentine, barracks, houses, people, all had the British capitalist, in these latter days, disappeared. I stood on the verge of a
tangled thicket, which skirted a great pri- | ing-spear, I recognized my practical roundmeval forest on the north, and the carol of shouldered friend already introduced to the innumerable birds alone broke the silence. reader, although I knew well enough that From the spot on which I stood, the ground he would never stir from home, on a spring sloped gently for about a mile down to a morning, without his everlasting great coat, broad winding river, that glittered like molcomforter, and umbrella. I was not in the ten gold in the morning sun. I knew the least shocked, either at the coolness of his fair stream that was one day to be called stare or of his costume; I was only a little the "royal towered Thame.” Wild swans surprised, I remember, to see how nimbly sailed gracefully hither and thither over its and gracefully he bounded over the ground, surface, appearing and disappearing among and to hear how remarkably well he spoke the reeds on the bank of the opposite reach, Welsh. My own sudden proficiency in that called afterwards by the invading Saxon, language seemed also quite a matter of Balder Sea, or the Sun God's Bay. The course. ground between me and the river (now “Oh, son of Gwynne the brave !" he began, populous Chelsea and Brompton) showed no with an agitated voice, and fierce gleaming trace of man or bis works. Where the Ham- black eyes ; “thou, too, art a seer and a mersmith and Putney omnibuses now run, prophet. Is it with thee as it is with me! the wild roe and the fox-the snake and the Is this fair hunting-ground changed to thy lizard—the badger and the squirrel had all view as by the wand of the sorcerer ? to themselves, save when the hungry wolf Have the armed sons of the southern land, came to dispute a claim to existence with that dwell in palaces of stone, made this them. A rich mossy turf, broken here and ground of the brave Trinobantes their own? there by patches of coarse grass, grose, un- Dost thou see, as I see, all this green hill, derwood, and now and then a tall forest over which our fathers hunted, cut up by tree, was all that the eye could see towards the accursed instruments of the Roman, and the south. North, east, and west stretched made to wave with a new grass that they the primeval forest-now bursting into leaf will force us to eat instead of the noble bud. It might have been the inmost recess acorn ? Are my eyes enchanted that I do of an uninhabited island, so wild, fresh, and longer see the thickets that sheltered the untrodden was the solitude. As I was en wild beasts? Are the tall trees laid low? joying the repose, and the savage beauty of Is all the ground laid bare to the plough of the scene-quick and graceful as an aquatic the invader? Do I, indeed, see our descendbird, a coracle or light canoe shot across the ants tamely reaping corn where we have stream, paddled skillfully by a human hand. hunted the fallow-deer and fought with the Man, then, held dominion here. I watched wolf ?" And he tossed back his hair wildly my new acquaintance land on the near bank, from his face, and looked about him like a and wander up and down. His attention clairvoyant, who dreads the thing he sees. seemed riveted on the eminence where I I looked around too. It was as he had said stood. He stopped and gazed—advanced, --a change had come o'er the scene. Beand stopped again. At length he stood tween us and the river side the ground was still for some minutes, then retreated as if covered with waving corn, and near at hand, in alarm-again he advanced slowly. It on the site of the Great Exhibition, stood a was a strange pantomime of astonishment, farmer's dwelling, of a fashion I had never fear, and curiosity. Was I, the modern seen. A woman clothed in a flowing robe Briton, clothed in broadcloth and crowned was bearing a vessel of water on her head ; with beaver skin, the cause of all this ex- she had filled it from a spring that bubbled citement in the breast of an ancient Briton? near; and laborers were scattered in the At last courage seemed to predominate with fields. The scene was no longer one of in him, and he drew near, I felt no more savage beauty. The hand of man bad conastonishment than one does at the strangest verted it into one of agricultural industry metamorphoses in a dream, when in the and prosperous repose. graceful form of the naked, woad-dyed, “Oh, most poble Trinobant !" I replied, splendidly tatooed savage before me, with “ to me, as to thee, it is given to discern the his long streaming black hair and short hunt things which are yet in the bosom of futu. rity; but this future that I gaze upon is the innumerable right-lines, forming symfairer and more desirable than that state of metrical figures of various sizes, but perthings in which you have lived. See here fectly harmonious in their combination; the abundance. Food for a score where was fine lines spread net-wise over the roof, as if lately barely food for one man, and that ob- it were the work of a huge geometric spider; tained at peril of his life. Say, is it not the unsubdued light, the aërial, cheerful better so?” I turned, and the slight motion elegance, produce the strangest sensation of recalled me from my short dream.
novelty, at the first glance. The feeling of “ Better, how ?" asked Mr. Jones, testily: admiration deepens as you remember how “ I have been talking this half hour about rapidly this enormous building has sprung the dreadful spirit of innovation, improve up at the will of an energetic nation. As ment, enlightenment, you call it ;) I have you move slowly along, and begin to underbeen telling you of the corruption of morals stand how strong and firm it all is, more that this terrible influx of foreigners will and more are you astonished that it should cause among us; to say nothing of the revo- | be so, for it looks ten times more unsubstanlutionary spirit they will spread among the tial from within that it does from without disaffected lower classes ; I even tell you It seems like a mere network of lines and of the horrid conspiracy they had formed to light, like a morning mist ready to dissolve murder our blessed queen and her artist into thin air, and husband, and which was fortunately discov
“Like the baseless fabric of a vision, ered and knocked on the head by a police Leave not a wreck behind." man, and you actually turn round and ask You cannot class it with the great works me if it is not better so. Allow me to say of architecture. Solidity, massiveness, the that you young fellows of the progress-party fretted vault, the sculptured capital, the are all a little mad. Good morning! Isolemn depth of shadow, and the partial can't stand looking at that great glittering light, revealing more by their mysterious bazaar any longer. And if you'll take a blending and contrast than the flood of day lesson from the wisdom of your ancestors—" pouring into the Crystal Palace on all sides,
" I shall come to the same conclusion as above and around; all these are wanted if I took a lesson from you,” I said, laughing. here. There is too much blank light, and
“ The creature man is the same in all there is no shadow at all. On a sunny day ages ; it is only the costume that is differ it has a wonderfully airy and gay effect, and ent,” said the commonplace philosopher. if it may not be properly pronounced grand “ Your great glass-house, and the commu- or beautiful, it is very elegant and giganticnion of all people within it, will never ally pretty. It does not bring thoughts of change his nature a bit, unless to make him the great supernatural ideas which overarch more conceited and less simple in his habits. our mortal life. It does not help to move We shall all be wanting to live in glass
“the burden of the mystery houses next."
of all this unintelligible world" "Well," I replied, eagerly, “and what from our hearts. We do not feel as we look harm would there be in that ?"
around, that we are brought nearer to the "Oh, none; only the little boys of the eternal, immutable, all-perfect Source and next generation must learn not to throw Centre of all things; we do not pause and stones. Glass-houses, indeed! what non-keep silence because the place is hallowed sense! Good morning."
by the inspiration of a lofty genius. No, And away went the old-fashioned gentle we are moved to surprise and admiration at man, flourishing his umbrella and muttering the wonderful cleverness of the whole, the to himself.
signal evidence of the power and intelligence Ten minutes afterwards I stood within of civilized man to create new worlds (mathe Crystal Palace, and forgot him and all terial worlds) out of the fair globe which other things but that wondrous structure. we inhabit; and we are lost in speculating The coup d'ail of the whole from the central, as to how far off from his present stage of point of the ground floor is astounding. The mechanical skill is the point at which God immense length, the height of the transept, I will say to man, “ Hitherto shalt thou go, the light and elegant supports and galleries ; , and no farther.” As far as reason will carry
us now, we may safely say that point is far more appropriate for the intended Exhidistant.
bition. Mr. Paxton's words occurred to us The feeling of strangeness and novelty, often while we were wandering about among combined with that of airy cheerfulness, is the bales and packing cases assembled from what takes possession of the mind on first every land “from Indus to the Pole." He entering the Crystal Palace. The sort of says in a paper addressed to the Society of thing is quite new, and you have no foregone Arts on the 13th of November, 1850:-"A conclusions, about what it ought or ought structure where the industry of all nations not to be like, to reconcile with your first is intended to be exhibited, should, it is preimpressions. After the novelty has ceased sumed, present to parties from all nations a to astonish, as you wander along the elegant building for the exhibition of their arts and airy galleries, and look down into the vast manufactures, that, while it affords ample nave, slowly, a true perception of the enor. accommodation and convenience for the purmous size of the building steals into the poses intended, would of itself be the most mind. You see wagons and horses standing singular and peculiar feature of the Exhiin the transept, and they look like children's biti How far this has been ac
accomplished, toys. Large old elms spread their branches I must leave to the community to decide.” and seem small; the very sparrows believe
The community will pronounce a decision they are flying about under the blue canopy thoroughly satisfactory to the able projector of heaven. As you are looking at the pig. of the edifice; of that there is little doubt; my size of a fellow-creature below, you see and we hope future communities, as well as many more,—about five thousand workmen, the present generation, will have further returning hurriedly from dinner. They cause to be grateful to the memory of Mr. blacken the ground near the entrance like Paxton. May his wish of converting the swarming emmets. This lasts only for a whole into a winter garden, after it has few minutes; they disperse themselves served its original purpose, be realized ! throughout the building, and it seems empty He says, “I would convert the building into
An army could perform its evo a permanent winter garden, and would then lutions conveniently in that long-drawn nave. make carriage drives and equestrian proThe galleries themselves are the most charm- menades through it. Pedestrians would ing promenades imaginable, and to see a have about two miles of galleries, and two gorgeous procession sweep through them in miles of walks upon the ground-floor, and the sunshine will be an enlivening sight. As sufficient room would then be left for plants. it stands, the only fault that I can find with The whole intermediate spaces between the the appearance of the Crystal Palace is the walks and drives would be planted with flat roof of the nave. It would have been shrubs and climbers from temperate climes. better, I think, bad it been vaulted like the In summer the upright glass might be retransept. The blue paint used in the deco- moved, so as to give the appearance of conation is also not quite pleasing; it should tinuous park and garden.” have been of a more delicate hue. When Think of the blessing this winter garden the awning is placed under the roof and would be to invalids, studious persons, and along the south side of the building, the ef- young children! Of the fashionable world fect of the whole interior will be much im
we take no account; they are well able to proved. At present, there is too much light; provide for their own pleasure Surely articles valuable for their color will lose all there is something very nearly akiu to richness in the glare. The want of shadow, genius in the man who plans a Crystal Paltoo, reminds one of the portraits of Queen ace (the very name seems taken from an Elizabeth. A tinted awning would remove Arabian tale !) for the purpose of collecting these objections very easily. It is a most within it all the cunningly devised works of surprising thing that there should be so every nation under heaven, that each may little to find fault with, and that the pro- see how clever the others are, and learn jectors should have had so little difficulty in from and esteem them accordingly; and executing so great and elegant a design. then proposes to convert it into a garden Perhaps it would have been impossible, in more beautiful than the far-famed hanging ten years' study, to have hit upon any thing one of the Babylonian Semiramis. And if
the ingenuity, taste, and skill of the man ; erse them with incredible speed; the lanwho devised the building deserve the thanks guages of all nations are known, and their and admiration of the world, what shall we acquirement placed within the reach of say of the mind of the man who first pro- every body; thought is communicated with posed to the country the whole scheme of a the rapidity, and even by the power of Great Industrial Exhibition for all Nations ? | lightning. On the other hand, the great When you, good reader, hold this in your principle of the division of labor, which hand, the completed plan will be in opera- may be called the moving power of civilization; and, as far as may be judged from the tion, is extended to all branches of science, promising state of matters now, it will be industry, and art. Whilst formerly the as successful as its projector and his royal greatest mental energies strove at universal wife can desire. But if it were not to prove knowledge, and that knowledge was consuccessful-were it even to turn out a com. fined to the few, now they are directed to plete failure, we should say that it was an specialities, and in these again even to the idea worthy of a great prince-noble, benev- minutest points. But the knowledge acolent, and of extended utility. The spirit quired becomes at once the property of the in which the thing was conceived, is that in community at large; whilst formerly diswhich it should be carried through. What covery was wrapt in secresy, it results from the nature of that spirit is, cannot be better the publicity of the present day, that no described than in Prince Albert's own words, sooner is a discovery or invention made addressed to an assembly of dignitaries of than it is already improved upon and surthe chief cities of the British Empire. When passed by competing efforts. The products we remember that the person who speaks is of all quarters of the globe are placed at our a young prince, and a foreigner, this beauti- disposal, and we bave only to choose which ful speech is the more remarkable. | is the best and cheapest for our purposes,
* I conceive it to be the duty of every and the powers of production are intrusted educated person closely to watch and study to the stimulus of competition and capital. the time in which he lives, and as far as in So man is approaching a more complete fulhim lies to add his humble mite of individual fillment of that great and sacred mission exertion to further the accomplishment of which he has to perform in this world. His what he believes Providence to have or reason being created after the image of God, dained. Nobody, however, who has paid he has to use it to discover the laws by any attention to the particular features of which the Almighty governs his creation, our present era, will doubt for a moment and, by making these laws his standard of that we are living at a period of most won / action, to conquer nature to his use-himderful transition, which tends rapidly to ac- self a divine instrument. Science discovers complish that great end, to which, indeed, all these laws of power, motion, and transforhistory points, the realization of the unity of mation ; industry applies them to the raw mankind.”
material which the earth yields us in abunIt may fairly be disputed whether all dance, but which becomes valuable only by history does point to such an end, but I sup knowledge; art teaches us the immutable pose most men would be glad enough to be laws of beauty and symmetry, and gives to lieve it, and at all events we congratulate our productions forms in accordance with the prince whose heart and imagination are them. The Exhibition of 1851 is to give us kept for ever warm by such a thought. He a true test and a living picture of the point goes on eloquently, thus :
of development at which the whole of man“Not a unity which breaks down the kind has arrived in this great task, and a limits and levels the peculiar characteristics new starting-point from which all nations of the different nations of the earth, but will be able to direct their future exertions. rather a unity the results and products of I confidently hope that the first impression those very national varieties and antagonis- which the view of this vast collection will tic qualities. The distances which separated produce on the spectator, will be that of the different nations and parts of the globe deep thankfulness to the Almighty for the are gradually vanishing before the achieve blessings which he has bestowed upon us ments of modern invention, and we can trav- already here below; and the second, the