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grand old Indiaman when the sultry dog-watch was growing cool to the dewy eastern shadow. I clapped my hands loudly when Mole, half-breathless with exertion and purple with heat, brought his dance to an end with a smart blow of his foot and a bow to us aft, as finely managed as any courtier could have contrived it. Then after an interval he took the fiddle again, and the others fell a-dancing, and when they were tired they sang songs.
By this time the evening had drawn over us. There were long rusty streaks of expiring scarlet in the west, but the stars were shining brilliantly, and the gloom of the night was already darkening out the forecastle upon the eye into an airy dusk, amid which the shapes of the seamen were scarcely visible. I had already noticed with satisfaction that the tub, which had been tilted that the last drop might be dipped out of it, was left unreplenished. One fellow sang with a fine voice— who it was I knew not; it was a clear rich baritone, and went floating up amongst the sails, whose wan hollows gave the notes back in dim echoes. I leaned with Miss Grant over the rail listening. An occasional delicate sob of water rose from the clear profound, which, mingling with the fellow's voice, gave a quality of softness and even of pathos to it. Nearly all the songs sung were of a sentimental cast, and were accompanied by either Mole or Charles with the fiddle; and though broad daylight would no doubt have found the sounds for the most part commonplace enough, yet the airs, even when delivered by some hoarser pipe than usual, took a note of romance and a quality of unreality from the overshadowing presence of the liquid night, the melancholy spaciousness of the dark sea extending on all sides, the dimness of the extended wings of canvas on high, the stillness upon the deep that was scarce disturbed by the breathing of the warm, dew-laden night-wind into the sails, and the almost oppressive hush
you found when, amid the intervals of the songs, you sent your gaze into the dark blue dome brilliant with stars which jewelled every point of spar, every shadowy end of boom, every phantasmal length of yard of the faint, pale fabric, looming large above the delicate glimmer of the decks.
All was hushed and in darkness forward; one figure alone could be made out crossing the stars in a regular pendulum tread on the forecastle, when Mole came aft to relieve me. The excitement of the drink and the dance had gone out of him. He said: "Ye see the men are well in hand, Mr. Musgrave; there's nothen to be feared from their liquorizing, as I told you."
"I was glad to notice that," I answered; "your jollifications, indeed your doings of any kind, are no concern of mine outside the lady's safety and my own. I heartily wish that you understood navigation, and that you could take charge of the brig, for in that case you would have no objection to putting Miss Grant and me aboard the first craft that would be willing to take us. The deuce of it is, Mr. Mole," continued I—for I hoped he might have come to me with a disposition rendered a trifle generous by the dog-watch festivity, and would be willing therefore to talk a little more freely than at another time—" the lady is bound to Rio under my charge, to be married to a cousin of mine who lives at that place, and the road there by way of Cuba threatens so long a delay, that besides the secret grieving of the lady over her prolonged separation from her sweetheart—and you, Mr. Mole, as an English sailor, will understand her feelings—there is the worry of my cousin to be considered. He will think the ship lost; he may fancy me false to my trust, perhaps."
He waited a little before answering, and then said very civilly: "I can quite onderstand yours and the lady's feelings. We're all sorry for ye both, I assure you; but we don't mean to let Charles swing; we don't intend to put ourselves in the way of the law, and so, as you've been already given plain to onderstand, Mr. Musgrave, there mustn't be, and there won't be, no speaking of ships. 'Sides," he continued, with a sudden rounding upon me, so to speak, in his manner, "supposing the hands consented to Tyour trans-shipping yourselves, ain't it a million to one that the vessel wouldn't be bound to Rio, or anywhere's near it? In that case," he added with a laugh, which he instantly checked, "you're as well off here; for Cuba's nearer to Rio than the Capo o' Good Hope or the Indies 'ud be, and for all you know, the ship you enter might be bound to them parts, or further off still—to Chiney or New Zealand."
Spite of his civil manner, I judged there was little more to come from a chat with him than ill-temper on his side and increased mortification and anxiety on mine, so telling him that the course to be steered throughout the night was the course we had been heading all day, I went below to join Miss Grant. I told her what Mole had said, and we sat talking till about nine o'clock; and then observing her to look very weary, for she had slept but little during the previous night, I begged her to withdraw, saying that I myself needed rest, as I should have to turn out again at twelve o'clock. Nevertheless, though professing myself tired, I was in no humour to go to bed. It was impossible to sit alone in that cabin without thinking of old Broadwater, a fancy that sent the eye instinctively to the smudge that still lurked darkly in the stain of the wood at the foot of the cabin-steps. A stouter heart than mine might have owned to a sense of timidity without a feeling of shame. The voyage indeed had been more like a nightmare than the grim reality it was, with its teeming life of brutality and ugly deeds. It seemed but yesterday that the brig had floated past the bald terrace of the South Foreland, and yet in the brief interval of the few weeks seven men of our slender company had
vanished one after another, and every man to such an accompaniment of tragic and scaring conditions as to cause the memory of his death to lay upon the mind with the significance of yonder stain upon the planks. Then again I was haunted by the recollection of the gaping and supplicating figures which had that morning piteously motioned to us for help, and of the white-bearded old man whose uplifted eyes and trembling, pointing hand had made his curse upon us as articulate as though the ear had received every syllable of the malediction.
But this sitting alone, with nothing to break in upon one's thoughts but the thin, weak groans of the swaying ship, was but melancholy work. I went to my cabin, and was about to undress myself, when it occurred to me that, since the brig was now in possession of the crew, whose condition might not be quite so sober as that of Mole, it would be as well for me to look to my pistols. I charged and primed them both, and then remembering that Miss Grant had talked as though she could handle a fire-arm with thorough knowledge of its use, I resolved to give her one of the brace to lodge under her pillow, or to place ready to hand. I did not doubt that a spirit such as hers would find something tonical and supporting in the mere notion of a loaded weapon lying close to her grasp. In sober truth, I feared more for her than for myself. My life was too serviceable to the men just now to render me uneasy on my own account; but it was otherwise with Miss Grant. Who could tell but that amongst that lawless band there were some—even one —with instincts to be easily rendered devilish with liquor? I see myself now, standing in that little cabin, grasping a pistol in either hand, my imagination forward in the forecastle, picturing the dim light of the slush-lamp there, flinging its faint, wavering illumination over the seamen sitting in their bunks, or with hairy faces overhanging the edges of their hammock?, dangerously gay-hearted with the drink they had draiDed, and with the dance and songs which, coming into their hard lives, were a sort of intoxication in themselves, talking of their jinks ashore, of their carousals, of their Polls and Susans, till one of them perhaps would speak of Miss Grant
I opened my door, crossed the narrow passage, and gently knocked upon the bulkhead of my companion's cabin. She instantly asked who it was that knocked. I answered. In a few moments she opened the door. The light from my own cabin-lamp was upon her, for the berths were exactly abreast. Her hair hung upon her shoulders, one hand grasped the neck of her dressing-gown against her white throat, giving her an aspect of sudden alarm, which the peculiar brilliance of her steadfast eyes could not have defeated but for the composure of her lips.
"What is it, Mr. Musgrave 1" she asked.
I now regretted my action. Here was I grasping a brace of pistols, and it seemed a stupid and nervous bit of behaviour in me to disturb this girl, and thus confront her.
"You have told me you are not afraid of fire-arms," I exclaimed. "It has occurred to me that one of these"
She looked at the weapon I extended with a smile, then without a word •entered her cabin and returned.
"There," she exclaimed, "you will see that I am as fully prepared as you.
Indeed I think I am better off, for yours, I fancy, are a little old-fashioned, whilst mine I am sure would prove the deadlier weapon."
She stepped aside that the light might shine upon the pistol she held. It was a very handsome piece, with a long glittering barrel, mounted in silver. "See I " she exclaimed, raising it. Her nostrils trembled, she drew herself erect with a slight backward leaning of her head, and levelled the pistol past me with a smile that was made almost scornful by the proud, sparkling determination of the gaze she fixed upon me. Oh ! for a painter's brush to give you the queenly figure and pose of her as she thus stood! Her arms sank to her side, and she said quietly, "Have no fear for me, Mr. Musgrave. Should I be called upon to defend myself, I shall know how to do it."
I again wished her good-night, and returned to my cabin, feeling somehow, as Jonathan says, a bit mean, though for what reason I do not know, unless it was that such a combination of beauty, coolness, and courage made one fancy that the best sort of manhood in comparison with it could not but be somewhat insignificant. Indeed it did me good to think of the tear she had let fall that day, and to remember that now and again a natural timidity and fear had broken out. After all, thought I, as I looked round for a convenient hiding-place for my pistols, it is always the woman that forms the most admirable part of the heroine.
(To be continued!)
CITY AND BOROUGH.
A Little time back an increase of dignity was granted by royal proclamation to two famous towns in Great Britain, one in England, the other in Scotland. Birmingham and Dundee, hitherto merely boroughs, were raised to the rank of cities. Several other English towns have, within some years past, been made cities in the same fashion. But there is something special about these two cases which distinguishes them from the others. In the other English towns that have been made cities the increase of rank has in every case followed on the town becoming the see of a bishop. With Birmingham this is not so; with Dundee, as a Scottish town, it hardly could be so. Two questions are at once suggested. First, What is the distinction between city and borough, which makes it promotion for a borough to become a city? Secondly, Is there any ground for the belief, certainly a very common one, that the rank of city is in some way, in England at least, connected with the presence of a bishop's see in the town so called t And a third and very delicate question has arisen at Dundee which does not seem to have been started at Birmingham. Nobody seems to have thought that, because Birmingham has become a city, therefore the chief magistrate of Birmingham has become a Lord Mayor. It does seem to have been very seriously thought at Dundee that the chief magistrate of the new city has acquired a right to be called Lord Provost.
It will be well to keep the English and the Scottish cases distinct, because it does not at all follow that arguments and precedents which may be good in England will therefore be good in Scotland. The law of the two kingdoms is so different that it is wise to
keep on the safe side in every case: it is specially needful in this case, because of the supposed relation between city and bisJwpric. This may exist in England, where episcopacy is recognized by law; it cannot exist in Scotland, where the present law knows nothing about bishops' sees at all.
Let us begin then with England and the English borough which has lately been raised to the rank of a city. It is plain that, if the rank of city merely implies the size and importance of the town on which it is bestowed, no English town can have a better right to that rank than Birmingham. But I am quite sure that, a few years back, most people thought that every bishop's see was, as such, necessarily a city, and that no town that was not a bishop's see could be a city. And this belief seemed to be borne out by the fact that the title of city was universally given to every English town that was a bishop's see, and to two only that were not. The two exceptions were Coventry and Westminster, and they were exceptions which proved the rule. For Coventry and Westminster had been bishops' sees, and they might seem to keep their rank somewhat after the manner of dowager queens and peeresses. If this be a sound rule, the advancement of Birmingham to the rank of a city is certainly a breach of it. Birmingham, like Edinburgh or Glasgow in Scotland, is the seat of a bishopric, but not of a bishopric acknowledged by law. Yet the notion of the connexion between city and bishopric used to be so fixed in most minds that I remember how, when a Roman Catholic bishopric was first founded at Birmingham, some inhabitants of Birmingham asked, merrily perhaps, whether their borough had thereby become a city. We have now the fact that Birmingham is not the seat of any bishopric known to the law, and yet that Birmingham has been made a city by royal proclamation. This at once raises our two questions, What (as far as England is concerned) is meant by a city 1 and, Have city and bishopric (as far as England is concerned) anything to do with one another?
Now I must freely confess that I do not know what difference, except difference in rank, there is in England between a city and a borough. In tables of precedence we see, very near the end, "Citizens ", and after them "Burgesses". I conceive therefore that there is an acknowledged difference of rank; that the Mayor of Birmingham will now undoubtedly take precedence of the Mayor of Warwick, that a citizen of Birmingham who is so unhappy as to be without any claim to rank as esquire, doctor, gentleman by coat-armour, or gentleman by profession, will also take precedence of a burgess of Warwick no less badly off. Further than this it is hard to see what Birmingham or any other borough gains by becoming a city. A city does not seem to have any rights or powers as a city which are not equally shared by every other corporate town. The only corporate towns which have any special powers above others are those which are counties of themselves ; and all cities are not counties of themselves, while some towns which are not cities are. The city in England is not so easily denned as the city in the United States. There every corporate town is a city. This makes a great many cities, and it leads to an use of the word "city" in common talk which seems a little strange in British ears. In England, even in speaking of a real city, the word "city " is seldom used, except in language a little formal or rhetorical; in America it is used whenever a city is mentioned. But the American rule has the advantage of being perfectly clear and avoiding all doubt. And it agrees very well with
the origin of the word: a corporate town is a civitas, a commonwealth; any lesser collection of men hardly is a commonwealth, or is such only in a much less perfect degree.
This brings us to the historical use of the word. It is clear at starting that the word is not English. It has no Old-English equivalent; burh, burgh, borough, in its various spellings and various shades of meaning, is our native word for urbes of every kind from Rome downward. It is curious that this word should in ordinary speech have been so largely displaced by the vaguer word tun, town, which means an enclosure of any kind, and in some English dialects is still applied to a single house and its surroundings. In no other Teutonic language has this particular usage come in; though the way in which the still vaguer Stadt is used in High-German is analogous to it. In common talk we use the word borough hardly oftener than the word city; when the word in used, it has commonly some direct reference to the parliamentary or municipal character of the town. Many people, I suspect, would define a borough as a town which sends members to Parliament, and such a definition, though still not accurate, has, by late changes, been brought nearer to accuracy than it used to be. City and borough then are both rather formal words; town is the word which comes most naturally to the lips when there is no special reason for using one of the others. Of the two formal words, borough is English, city is Latin; it comes to us from Gaul and Italy by some road or other. It is in Domesday that we find, by no means its first use in England, but its first clearly formal use, its first use of it to distinguish a certain class of towns, to mark those towns which are civitates as well as burgi from those which are burgi only. Now in Gaul the civitas in formal Koman language was the tribe and its territory, the whole land of the Arverni, Parisii, or any other tribe. In a secondary sense it meant the head town of the tribe, which in