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pretensions to Liberalism as a " cry' —pretensions not borne out by his deeds : and the more rational section of the Liberal party , disgusted with the do-nothings-in-office and the intriguers , are seceding from the alliance , without having yet devised a distinct policy . Such a division of the Liberals implies a Tory interregnum . But the Tories are divided , and , not only unprovided with a policy , they are also unprovided with any man of weight , and with any considerable supply of political saffacitv . The temptation which will
beset the real Liberals will come in the shape of an attempt to get up a Whig and electioneering anti-Tory movement without any real policy : let the Liberals meet that attempt by declining to act collectively until they have devised a policy . If Cob den and men of his stamp are wise and zealous , they will not find much difficulty in constructing a policy suggested by the great public
facts now before us . To attempt to go on upon the old Reform policy is useless ; as well try to live on the bones of last year ' s dinners : the new popular policy must be framed to meet the urgent wants , the actual feelings , of the day ; it must be beyond a Reform policy : in a word , it must be , not the policy of 1831 , but of 1851 ; and it must include some startling elements . But will " Liberals " not be frightened at words ?
We shall return to this subject next week , in the first of a series of letters on the popular policy for 1851—which must partake in a greater degree than popular movements have yet done of Social Reform .
BLACKFRIARS PARISH GONE TO RICHMOND-HILL . Once a year the Reverend Joseph Brown leads forth his flock to fresh fields and pastures newnew at least to too many of that multitude . And who is the Reverend Joseph Brown ? What his flock ? Joseph Brown was , until this time last year , incumbent of St . Peter ' s , Bethnal-green ; a post for which he was selected on account of his exertions to improve the state of his people morally
and physically m other parishes . But never had he a more arduous task than in that strange province of London , so familiar in name , so little known in fact to most of those who will read these words . A miserable place is Bethnal-green , the whole area of it . Its inhabitants are in great part engaged in handloom weaving and the cognate trades ; the shops are all of the pettiest
ordertrades ancillary to the declining manufactures , and to the wants of a population ever living on the frontier between life and death . A true Bethnalgreen man will rise before light and lie down after midnight—work all day as hard as lie can—and earn , with the help of other feebler hands in his cabinned household , nearly enough to keep body and soul together . It is a region of unrural cottages , squalid streets , and cheerless
roadslanguishing yards called gardens and pale peopleunfinished yet ruined—struggling against nonexistence , and realizing a nightmare of real life , in which the " stern realities" are so sombre that they are like a ghastly dream . Here there is no class of rich to fall back uponnothing between the pauper and the parish ; and bhe rates are wrung out of the quasi pauper class , rhc division of the parish into ten is a comparatively recent event ; the clergy of the Established Church are doomed to a cheerless life , next door neighbours to bare want : no " fat livings" tempt bhe clerical idler j the Bethnal-green clergyman must work , or be shamed .
Joseph Brown was happily constituted for this dismal post . He is an artist in his way ; for he takes a workmanlike pride in doing good . He is one of God ' s journeymen , and very handily is his work turned out . He made himself , not only the surpliccd fee taker , the preacher , and " visiter of the sick "—whose sanctimonious officiousness so often intrudes upon the extremity of mortal weakness , and desecrates the presence of sorrow with a didactic authority—but the true friend of the poor ; their almoner , when that might be ; their
adviser on neeil ; their solace always . He truly lived among his people , in the sense of entering heartily and thoroughly into tlicir ways of life , their needs , their fears—( they have few hopes in Bethnalgreen ) — and their expedients ; he directed perplexity , irconomiml thrift , added to the little a little more that softened want , and lent a light even to the darkness of despair with the mournful Hinilc of sympathy . A good man , Joseph Brown , and best understood by the wretched to whom
he had come when all else abandoned them . And once a year this man of God led forth his people into the unspoiled world of God , where the uncontaminated elements might rejoice their senses and restore their souls—reawakening the dormant life . Once a year he lifted up his fellow-creature from his abject state and showed him the land of his race , that his heart might gladden at that memory and that hope , and that man might die in the knowledge of his inheritance , even though deprived of it for a time .
Now these things got abroad ; many desired to see the good pastor rewarded by promotion , many wished an equally good workman in their own uncultivated fields . Once he resisted an invitation to improve his lot ; but sickness and even death exactedfromhis home thefee of his privilege to do good —for no man shall earn the blessing of doing good ,
in this world , without paying the price for the licence ; and at last he yielded . He was appointed by the Bishop of Winchester to the parish of Christchurch , Blackfriars ; a parish not so poor or wretched as Bethnal-green , but still poor enough , wretched enough , and , moreover , divided by religious discords . Joseph Brown resorts to his quiet workmanship , the usual blessing attends his industry , and he is gaining the confidence of his
parishrs . According to his wont , on Monday , he had out this new parish , and led it forth into the country . And a wonderful review it was , quite different from such as we see armed generals perform in Hydepark . At ten o ' clock a large contingent of the poor left the Waterloo station , and others followed by subsequent trains—never had Richmond station disgorged such heaps of humanity . " They are welling out , sir , oozing out like a flood ! " cried an
admiring traveller . And so it was—a strange living flood—waves of cleanly children—billows of grey shawled women from the workhouse , gushes of smiling girls more blooming than might have been expected . But Blackfriars , if it is a less thoughtful parish than Bethnal-green , is less mortified in the flesh—less strange to gaiety . A later train brought up a tide of the " aristocracy " of Blackfriars . But we must not pause to tell all that passed on that day of labour for the leader—how he led the multitude up Richmond-hill , and showed them the
lovely scene where the verdant plain spread itself beneath , and the Thames winds its thread of silver through the dark green ; how they marched to Ham , and rested under its stately avenues of limes , sweetly smelling ; how the emancipated urchins dabbled in the crystal wave on the pebbles ; how the scanty viands were eked out by provident gifts ; how the aged and helpless—the decent old ladies from the almshouses and the homeliest of drugget-shawled dames from the workhouse—rode back in the golden state barge ; how the more
leisurely " aristocracy" shared the free and unpretending hospitality of the rector at his residence attached to the Orphan Asylum , and the day finished with a serious mirth befitting the kindly spirit that prevailed . The fairest day of this summer lent its brilliancy to the occasion—the sun made its genial sting felt upon the gladdened skin , —the blue sky looked bluer for the white clouds that fringed it , — the green limes rustled to a breathing breeze , which shook down the living
perfume ; and the night brought a moon so piercing in its brightness that it was fitted to live in the memory of that night . The great parish of Blackfriars had been in review—dragged forth by its institutions and shown to the light of day . The very back rooms of its workhouse were turned out and ventilated upon Ham-common . It had been brought face to face with Nature . Face to face also with itself : its easy affluence was confronted with its destitution ; and perhaps , for the first time in its history , it knew
itself in a new aspect , recognized influences at work unseen , and learned to respect its own troubles , its own sorrows , its motives , and its better dispositions . Signs of that awakening knowledge were not wanting at the close : without didactic discourse or obtrusive ceremonials—for nothing could be freer than the social intercourse in that best of saloons , a summer garden—many a word disclosed the fact that the parish had learned to regret its divisions , had learned to know its common interests and common feelings .
In that vast assemblage what varied histories must have been gathered . What trials , conquered and conquering ; what triumphs , what falls ; what passions , what fears , hopes , budding and blasted ; what heroic endurance , what petty artifice , what misdeeds , perchance crimes ; what conflict of
interests , thoughts , experiences , opinions , beliefs , religions ! But all those jarring elements had been brought together , and subdued to one influence , so as to endow them with a unity of spirit . Not for that day only , but for the future . A spirit of trust among the weak , of promise among the able . And what was that one great influence ? It was the belief in the goodness of God , faith in the power of the human heart to be restored and awake ned
to the knowledge of that goodness , and the religious desire to seek out his laws and follow them out in the service of our fellow creatures—the fallen , the lowly , the helpless , and the miserable . Sects may divide us , opinion may jar with opinion , and while men raise doctrine above faith they will make religion a war cry . But , however divided we may be , the God in whom the vast bulk of us believe is one—his laws do not falter in their irrevocable decree for our perversity—we thwart them only to our own destruction ; the faith in Him , however diversified in doctrinal shape , is one ; the religion that binds us to do good for its own sake is one ; and of that universal religion , call it what you will , Joseph Brown is a minister . Appointed or not by the bishop of an " Established " Church , he is a true minister of the universal Church of God ; he seeks for his temple the green arches of the lime avenues ; and in the unaltered wind and sun of Nature he utters the voice of love , divine and human . That is the sacred influence which was called forth on that day—the best holiday that shines on the favoured parish of Bethnalgreen—a true holy day .
THE COST OF ROYALTY . Much surprise and indignation have been excited among the more earnest and hopeful Financial Reformers by the readiness with which Parliament has voted an income of £ 12 , 000 a year to the young Duke of Cambridge . The arguments against granting so liberal an allowance were stated in a verv sensible and temperate manner by Mr . Bright ,
who was surprised that a man with so large an income as that possessed by the late Duke should have left his only son and heir to be provided for by the nation . In the same business-like , straight * forward style he warned Lord John Russell—who must have been wishing him at Rochdale—that the voting so large an income to a Prince , who is only a cousin of the Queen , may furnish an awkward precedent , a few years hence , when the royal children come to be provided for .
But , in spite of all his good sense , Mr . Bright forgot one essential element in the question : he forgot that Parliament never estimates the cost of royalty by the same rigid utilitarian rules which it is in the habit of applying to other branches of the national expenditure . Take the civil list of Queen Victoria ,, for example , and the mode in which it is expended . One of the largest items of that expenditure consists of the salaries of the royal household . No less than £ 131 , 000 is paid annually
under this head , chiefly to members of the aristocracy ; and yet , we believe that the Queen would enjoy herself much more were she allowed to dispense with the irksome restraint of this live hedge . Fromtheevident delight with which the royal family appear to enjoy the brief period of their absence , in Scotland or on the Continent , from the pomp and show of royalty with its wearisome annoyance , it may fairly be concluded that the Queen would have no objection to see a sweeping reform of the royal household .
But , what would our proud English aristocracy say to such a proposal ? For the last two centuries , the patriotism of the great Whig and Tory noblemen , whose contentions fill so large a part of history , has been mainly inspired by the eager desire to obtain court offices for themselves , their wives and daughters . What would become of England were such powerful incentives to ambition utterly abolished ? Would not the sun of England ' s prosperity speedily set for ever if the offices of Grand Falconer , Keeper of the Swans , Groom of the Robes , Clerk of the Kitchen , Pages of the Backstairs , Gentlemen of the Wine Cellars , and a host of others equally important , were swept out of
existence ? And this pageantry is the fashion of royalty . Strip it of this and you come at once to the republican form of government . Now , the people of England are not quite prepared for that form , much as they are animated with its spirit . Looking at France and America they do not see anything which would make them prefer to live in a republic of either description . To convert our crowned republic into a bareheaded one might please impatient
420 Htffe 3 Lta 1 ltt + [ Saturday ,
Leader (1850-1860), July 27, 1850, page 420, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/l/issues/vm2-ncseproduct1848/page/12/