ePub 版
[ocr errors]

At the end of about ten days the missionary returned to Stanley, and sent on board a letter ordering me to give up the vessel and leave her at • three hours'' notice. Not a word of wrong was imputed to me, except that I was opposed to the plans ; but after making one more effort with the magistrate to get a hearing without effect, and upon being ordered by him to obey this summary ejectment from what was indeed our home, I immediately did so. Inwardly, I was rejoiced at this, as the world would now know what a 'missionary' work really was. I was, moreover, heartily glad to be out of such an ill-conducted and—as I considered it—inconsistent work : but, nevertheless, three hours was short notice; and after all the planning, and fitting, and arrangements, with the attendant expense that I had gone through for an engagement of three years, I think it was rather a strange way of illustrating Christian conduct in missionary life. However, as it was almost impossible to vacate the vessel in three hours (for as the reader may remember I had a large quantity of effects on board), and also on account of my wife, I requested permission to remain three days instead of hours. Á reply was given me graciously extending the indulgence ; but before that time I had packed up my things and sent them on shore, ready myself to go also. The vessel, her stores, material, and the balance of money


hands and belonging to the Society, were all handed over to him whom the Magistrate chose to call owner of the ship ;' though the vessel was built by public subscription : but I asked for money to defray the expenses of myself and wife home to England, and also to support us on shore until we could get home. All and everything was, however, refused, the object apparently being to prevent our returning to any place where our voice could be heard in a manner likely to elicit truth. Food we had none, nor a bed to lie upon, until, from


small amount of ready cash, I bought of Mr. Missionary, and paid him for a little common ship’s biscuit and pork, and the second-hand bedding we had been using. Thus, then, after two years' hard and faithful service, the man who had placed the Society in the favourable position it now occupies, and was ever applauded and spoken well of by that Society, was, with his wife, thanked in deeds by suddenly at one blow reducing them next to beggary, and turning them on shore 8000 miles from England, without food or means to get any, or to reach their native home! Such is a Patagonian missionary work !-yet, if the missionary' from that sentence could be expunged, I am certain that the Patagonian himself would have shown more mercy than this Christian Society did.”—Vol. II. pp. 271–273.


[ocr errors]

We have assuredly no favourable opinion of self-styled missionary societies independent of the Church, but anything so disgraceful as this complete swindle, denominated the Patagonian Mission Society, we could hardly have conceived to exist, and we earnestly trust that this thoroughly interesting and truthful history of Captain Snow's may open the eyes of all the well-intentioned persons who are connected with it.

Captain Snow and his wife form the sole interest of the missionary expedition as such, and are deserving of our truest respect and admiration.



The Spirit of the Church. London: J. Masters. This goodly Volume, as will be seen from our advertisements, is made up of a series of Articles systematically arranged from successive volumes of the Ecclesiastic. And we freely admit that we feel not a little proud of the result. As regards ourselves, it is some consolation to think, that during the eventful years which have occurred since the Ecclesiastic was begun, we have never once been driven by fear to compromise the principles which we originally put forth ; nor, on the other hand, have we been tempted to take up with any of those novel theories and practices, by which earnest but impatient men amongst us from time to time have been led to seek a solution of, or escape from, the difficulties of our position. And as regards the Volume itself, we venture to assert that it contains a representation of the English Church, in relation to doctrine and ritual, drawn not from imagination, but from a practical acquaintance with her system, such as is not to be found in any one other single publication. We trust that it may tend in its measure to extend the knowledge of what is good and true in many minds.


Summerleigh Manor ; or Brothers and Sisters. London : J. Masters. This is a graceful and entertaining tale, written in close imitation of Miss Yonge's style, and with much of the genuine talent for this species of writing, which that author so eminently possesses. The whole tone and bias of the work is excellent, but we could have wished for some distinctive religious teaching; and we regret that this promising young writer should have adopted one of the great blemishes of all Miss Yonge's works, in the introduction into the story of persons of rank, with a strong tinge throughout the whole work of that_undue exaltation of that worldly advantage which is so essentially an English failing,

[ocr errors]

Storm and Sunshine, by W. E. DICKSON, Author of “ Our Workshop,” (J. H. and J. Parker, Oxford and London,) is a striking little record of Christian boyhood, which reads almost as if it were an authentic history, till the closing events become somewhat melodramatic. Any work, however, which tends as this does to influence for good that early period of the young man's life, which is often so utterly ungodly, cannot fail to be useful.

Mr. W. E. Jelf's Bampton Lectures, (J. H. Parker,) are, we suppose, intentionally orthodox. But the writer has yet to learn, that unwarrantable and unsafe conclusions may proceed from mere selfreliance, almost as much as from heretical pravity. We will not say anything worse of the volume, however, than that to read it would, in our judgment, be sheer waste of time for any one.

Among many Sermons, preached on the Fast-Day, and since published, we single out that by the Rev. J. BAINES; not for its literary merits, but because it advocates the celebration of the Holy Eucharist as the great means of Intercession.



1. Dictionnaire Raisonné de l'Architecture Française. By M.

VIOLLET LE Duc. Paris : Bance. 2. A Lecture delivered at Doncaster, on the 23rd of September, by

Mr. G. G. Scott, on the present Position and future Prospects of the Revival of Gothic Architecture. “The Builder," Octo

ber 10, 1857. 3. Prospectus of the Mediæval Society.

The history of the revival of Art in the nineteenth century, if ever it be fairly and fully written, will contain no more interesting chapter, than that which chronicles the gradual changes of sentiment which have come over the views of the men who have been most active in the work. Rightly regarded, they are the evidences

, of that reality which, in some minds at least, has always been vigorously at work : and which, as time wears on, and the ranks of real artists are strengthened by the constant succession of fresh men younger and more enthusiastic than their forerunners, bids fair to become more and more the characteristic of the school.

We need hardly pause to say what we consider to be the great revival of art in this age; for every one, we suppose, is ready to allow at least this much to the Revival of Mediæval Art, commenced in architecture, and now bearing magnificent fruit in the sister art of painting through the efforts of the Pre-Raphaelite brethren. Whilst other artists have been content to go on ever in the same blind course of obedience to that which their immediate predecessors have taught them, it has been the pride of some at least of these men to think for themselves, to recall the world to a sense of the real object of art, and to the necessity of a stern uncompromising reality in its treatment. Of course at such a time the movement is clogged and impeded by a crowd of men, eager indeed to share in the glory of success, but utterly unable to grasp the real mode of attaining to it; and it would be absurd in the highest degree to suppose that, beyond the ranks of a very few artists of the first order, any real deep feeling for art ever obtains thorough possession and mastery of the mind, to such an extent as to be evident in all that is done. We believe entirely that there are some such 'men at the present day; and even in the palmiest days of the Middle Ages, more could seldom have been said. The time has, we think, arrived at which it is possible to be discriminating to a greater degree than has been fashionable, as to the greater and less amount of merit observable in the works of old artists. Unquestionably they were very unequal. Their's

Vol. XIX.-DECEMBER, 1857.

3 z

[ocr errors]

could have been no real art had it not been so ; for otherwise it might have been true, as some men seem to fancy now, that their work depended for its beauty upon some lost laws of proportion and rules of design, which made it easy for all to build and design equally well, instead of upon the true artistic instinct and genius, which in other arts is rightly held to be absolutely indispensable to success, and which is generally as rare as it is precious.

It is very true, however, that certain ages in the history of the world, have been signally marked by the presence, at the same time

, of a multitude of artists of the very first order, whose works have had so great an influence on their time that they have raised in an extraordinary degree the entire character of their art. In such times inferior minds, in their proneness to follow the lead of others, unconsciously develope into a style of work infinitely more noble than they could ever attain to, where the work of their superiors was less thoroughly beautiful, and hence, in the three successions

; of Pointed architecture, familiar to us in England, it is remarkable how very much more rapidly the work of inferior men deteriorated, than that of the great leaders of the movement. In the thirteenth century it is really difficult to discover that any work which can fairly be called bad was ever executed. In the fourteenth century, however, the much more lax and weak style of the greater artists produced a gradually increasing number of positively inferior works; whilst in the fifteenth century comparatively few, out of the vast number of works, still remaining to us, contain any evidence of a great appreciation of art.

Throughout the whole of this period, however, there were certain general rules of practice always adhered to; such as the necessity of solid construction with real materials, and without shams or imitations of any kind; or the ornamentation, as much as possible, of necessary constructional features only; or the importance of proper Ritual arrangements in churches, the tendency of which undoubtedly was to secure, to a very great degree, a good effect in all the work which was executed. And it has been, for some years past, our endeavour from time to time to point out the necessity which still exists for such rules as these, as a primary condition for anything like general success. Happily, we believe, we may say that a marked change is observable in these respects everywhere at the present day among Gothic architects. There are among them, as among all others, a host of inferior men; and, perhaps, Mr. G. G. Scott was right to protest, in bis Doncaster lecture, against the movement being compromised by the bad work of some of them; but at the same time it is a matter of just congratulation, that the general standard of art has been greatly raised of late years, and that it would be simply impossible to point to anything so base or contemptible on the part of any Gothic architect of any eminence whatever, as still passes


current among the most distinguished of the classic or Renaissance School.1

The revival has now advanced just so far that it becomes necessary, more than ever before, to scrutinize very closely every building that is erected, and to protest much more vigorously than even at the first against any laxity of practice or want of energy in carrying out all the best principles of art to the very highest development; we say this the more forcibly, because we think that we see an increasing tendency on the part of many to rest content with the triumph which has been already achieved, instead of pressing on as vigorously as of old, in favour of all that is good, and in opposition to everything that is false. To our minds the Ecclesiological Society would do well to indulge again occasionally in the same hearty denunciations of those who oppose its principles, thạt distinguished the earlier years of its existence as the Cambridge Camden Society; and the same may be said of some of our other societies when we read, as we did but a short time since, that some of the leading members of the Oxford Architectural Society have ventured to argue in favour of galleries in churches, because they fancy that they have some ancient “authority" for them. Religious art undoubtedly owes much to the societies which have sprung up all over the country ; but if they are to continue to aid its

progress it must be, we think, by studiously avoiding anything like antiquarianism, which, so far as art is concerned, is not only a very useless, but we are almost inclined to think, a very mischievous study. We trust earnestly, that the “ Mediæval Society” just established by the joint efforts of a body of architects, painters, and literary men, may not wreck on this rock; the prospectus of their intentions commands our entire sympathy, but this is the great danger to be apprehended unless, as we hope will be the case, it is seen and provided against by their rules.2

But no revival of any society which has once done good work, and no formation of any new society for the same purpose, can do more than popularize art, and lead men who would otherwise not trouble themselves about it, to devote themselves to its study. The truest artist will probably abstain with jealous care from open. ing himself, his mind, and his thoughts to a crowd of only half

1 One example will be sufficient. The new Theatre in Covent Garden is to have the most glaringly sham front, and is from the design of Mr. E. M. Barry.

2 The following rules of the “ Mediæval Society," which we copy from their prospectus are especially good :

I. “ The object of the Society to be the collection of copies of works of art exe. cuted before the end of the thirteenth century, with the view of promoting the study of the mediæval period as the highest and purest of former times.

V. " The Committee to be prohibited from receiving any ancient objects of art taken from their proper and original position with a view to forming a collection of antiquities, as the object of the Society is in no sense antiquarian, and one of its leading principles will always be the preservation of ancient art with the most jealous care in its original locality."

« 上一頁繼續 »