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fix their great golden eyes upon it, and hurry in hasty rivalry to the capture. Their anxiety is something wondrous to behold; they come from all directions, bolt against one another, and struggle which shall be the first to secure the appetising bait. If you on your side are quick in seizing each individual as he comes up in his turn, you will soon have realised an abundant harvest of these estimable batrachians; while the tumbles made by the frogs in endeavouring to reach the bait, and the fantastic dances executed by the long legs of those that you have hooked, will in the mean time render the sport one of the most diverting that it is possible to conceive.

It appears that "the estimable batrachian" here alluded to has intellectual capacity enough to learn by experience as well as fish, and that he refuses after a time the coarse but tempting bait above described. In proof of this, M. Guillemard relates the following anecdote: "A charming young lady, Mademoiselle Claire L., used to amuse herself by fishing for frogs in the basin in the garden; but as her exquisite sensibility would not allow her to put them to death, after having amused herself for a while in seeing the batrachians execute entrechats at the extremity of the line, she would throw them back again into the water. After pursuing this amusement for a few days, she found that the bait had no longer any charms in their eyes. In vain she agitated the most brilliant colours over the surface of the water, and imitated the flapping of a butterfly's wings in the most natural manner possible; the frogs would not bite, and after having for some time watched the proceeding with their great wondering eyes, they would withdraw, with an expression of contempt, that seemed to say, 'You shan't catch us again!'

It is evident that angling is still in its infancy in France. It is certain, however, that a change has taken place in that respect; the passion for imitating the "sport" of the English "gentleman" has extended even to "the simple art," and many of our tackle manufacturers now export largely to Paris. M. Guillemard's book may be rather considered as a sign of the times than, as its author assumes, an initiative movement. Meantime, the English amateur angler will be glad to know where, in these days of railroads, there is capital sport within a day's journey; and even the Continental traveller will not disdain the information that in almost every department in France (la Seine alone excepted) one or more of those quick-flowing, clear streams will be met with, which abound in trout. The rivers of the coast are fullest of fish, but they are rivalled by others, more especially in the hilly districts, and by some in the interior; even in the Seine and Oise at Chambly, near Pontoise, and at the ru de Meru, at Milly sur l'Ecole.

THE ANTI-PALMERSTON CONFEDERACY.

BY CYRUS Redding.

THE magazine has an advantage over the diurnal press; like the ephemeron, the latter lives but a day before its successor walks over its remains. The former survives thirty successive days on the library-table, remaining accessible for reference until it is transferred to the shelf. Referring to our last number, we see there anticipated the kind of spirit the Opposition has since displayed. We there stated that the aim of the party led by the placid Earl of Derby and the fixed, "unchangeable" Mr. Disraeli would be revenge, if not victory; and that the Minister would be assailed either for one purpose or the other, even if the assailants became the iconoclasts of their own misshapen gods. We did not bargain for all that since took place, because we should have been reluctant to depress so low on the scale our estimate of the reputation of any public men as they have depressed themselves. We could not imagine the scene recently enacted by four discordant parties, actuated by nearly as many different views, some of whom we believe mistaken, others ambitious; but the fiercest in spleen, if the most imbecile for mischief, considered alone, suddenly reinforced by a party numerically inconsiderable, if ambitious in display of ability. To this the Opposition of which we speak tendered its forgiving embraces on their forsaking the urn of their late master, trampling on their cypress crowns, and consenting to play double-sides amid the popular derision, and significant whispers of "jubilee, cajolery," from their new-old friends, who winked on each other at the same time as the recruits fell into the ranks.

That the Opposition should have been envious at the Minister's success in justifying the public confidence was natural, and death alone extinguishes envy. But the mere exhibition of the feeling, and proceeding to analogous action, are different things. Shattered and discordant, Lord Derby's party in point of strength by no means corresponded either with its blustering attitude, the magniloquence of its intentions, or its desire to effect mischief. When Lord Palmerston, demanded by the popular voice, came into power to restore order from almost remediless confusion, Lord Derby's friends, crestfallen and hopeless, said among themselves: "No matter, if we come in we can effect nothing just Let Palmerston do the work. Matters are bad in the Crimea, beyond our skill to cure; he may square them with his experience better than we can; and as soon as he has got all well into trim, let us set at work, undermine, and, kicking him out, direct the machine he has made run smoothly." Perhaps they calculated even then on gaining over the double-sided party of Mr. Gladstone, displaying thus the measure of their patriotism, their innate selfishness, and their incompetence, to hold office alone. What cared they for the welfare of the people? They consoled themselves with the hope of profiting from the victory won by others, in the ruin of those who gained it. How mentally small-how murky the spirits of those who exhibited the are perennius-the everlasting front of

now.

brass in contemplating a mode of proceeding so insulting to public opinion, and so bold in violation of honest principle.

We must here do justice to some of the higher-minded Conservatives who followed their leader with reluctance, and to others who refused to follow him at all, by their revulsion to such ungenerous measures, not abandoning their own political sentiments. They could not stoop to dangle in the Derby train through any slough into which its recklessness might lead them. A meeting of the Opposition leaders took place, and after a little politic coquetry on the part of the followers of the late Sir Robert Peel, the defection of Mr. Gladstone and his friends was announced, that gentleman figuring foremost in the harlequinade. We thought of the line spoken by Scaramouche when we heard of the defection of the fair-spoken ex-Chancellor: "Il y a pourtant des jours ou tu es si laid, si laid!"

66

The game opened when the present Chancellor of the Exchequer made his financial statement. Mr. Gladstone now displayed himself, seeing his own prospective financial scheme, which was to be immortal in the idea of the right honourable gentleman, sorely mutilated. Bitter was the speech delivered upon that occasion. But it was most unreasonable in Mr. Gladstone to imagine that the successors in his old office should follow his measures to the letter. There was, to be sure, the consideration that so far he had supported the ministry. In consequence, he exhibited the cloven foot to its full expansion-" Reject my old scheme, and I will try and overturn your new one." He had deserted his old friends to vindicate Sir Robert Peel's great national and popular measure, when attacked, both politically and personally, with such malice as no minister ever before encountered, and by an assailant, too, who had repeated every political creed in turn, so that the creed he at present professes became the only one left him, clad as he is in Joseph's coat of many colours. Lashed as poor Sir Robert had been for conferring the inestimable benefit of free-trade upon the nation, how could his small band of friends, the double-sides, do better than join Lord Derby and their late calumniators? They salved their honour, perhaps, by the reflection, that the party to which they had returned was their first love. What if that party had pronounced the national ruin to be free-trade, libelled Peel and his friends for supporting that measure, and declared it hemlock and aconite to the country's prosperity, may not hungry men eat their words? What if the party got into place for a moment by gorging the morsel it had just declared to be poison, and declared on their consciences they believed it an amazing strengthener of the national vitality? Their political profligacy was so intolerable that even Lord Derby's own parliament turned him out of office, and Lord Palmerston had no occasion, mongrel parliament as it was, to dissolve it. Until Mr. Gladstone found the pear ripe, he preserved his political chastity. At last a too strong temptation led his blushing virtue into the arms of the calumniators of his old friend. Perhaps the honourable gentleman, considering that life is short, and forgiveness a Christian duty, especially when a conveniency, wished to raise himself above the vulgar level. He sighed for a name, like him who set fire to a temple for that purpose. Peel was no more; the dead come not back to tell tales in our time, or upbraid us with fearful truths. The ghost of Banquo is a legend.

Thus situated in regard to the state of the two great parties in the House, one slightly reinforced, those of less importance could only operate by throwing their strength on one side or the other, according to the prevalence of certain opinions or interests, as has been too often a custom among political men enamoured of strange, but profitable, doctrines.

The division on the finance question overthrew Mr. Gladstone's hopes at the opening of the confederacy. Its first effort was defeated by a majority of eighty in favour of the government, notwithstanding the honourable gentleman's eloquence, for he is unquestionably an eloquent speaker. He had in vain ambled over to the camp of his late enemies and upheld the glory of political adulteration. It must have been an afflicting reflection to himself that his desertion of Lord Palmerston was thus profitless, he gaining nothing more than an enrolment of his achievement among the deformities of statesmen. We can fancy the right honourable gentleman justifying himself in his closet, and soliloquising: "Have they not become free-traders since the death of my dear friend, Sir Robert? What were their motives to me formerly, if they agree now ?" Chewing the cud of his disappointment, we hear him add, "Does not my right orthodox faith teach me to forgive all men everything (except heresy)? And the step I have taken, is it not right orthodox, religious, good? What casuist will dispute its goodness with me? I should like to meet him!" We can fancy the self-satisfaction conferred by such a sense of a "good" act. We remember Canning's facetious simile in exposition of the word "good :"

So youthful Horner roll'd the roguish eye,
Cull'd the dark plum from out the Christmas pie,
And cried in self-applause-" How good a boy am I!"

This defeat in the Commons was followed by one proportionably disastrous in the House of Lords. A majority voted against a motion of Lord Derby, equivalent to a censure upon ministers for the outbreak with China. The result showed that the Opposition had no chance of success there. The desire of office was too clearly the paramount object of the anti-ministerialists, and the Chinese war their cheval de bataille. The true merits of the case had little to do in the question. In vain the head of the versatile house of Stanley tried to make the worse appear the better reason; his lordship argued well for one who embraces the expedient of preference to that of right, and deems it more likely to profit from chance than the fastidiousness that reconciles its pursuits to fairness or consistency. The feebleness of his lordship's followers in the argument, and his own unscrupulous bitterness of spirit, as usual, were visible impediments to his object. His speech, reckless and eloquent, half angry from having a certain taint of incredulity of success, arising, we presume, from the recollection of many lost games of fast and loose, was striking, It showed how well words may be made use of to conceal hopes and make ambition plausible in vain :

So down the hill the Derby dilly glides,
Scanty of passengers, save chance outsides.

Unluckily a majority of thirty-six in the way upset the vehicle.

The speeches of the law lords were only remarkable for their coinci

dence with the interests of the side of the House upon which they sat. The conviction drawn from such speeches, by those unlucky enough to go to law, that the opinions of lawyers upon the statutes are as variable as the weather, is not very consoling. Lord Lyndhurst showed no diminution of power or ability in arguing on the side of his latest political affection. The Bishop of Oxford spoke against the government, as might be expected, considering how much certain recent episcopal appointments must be considered as retarding the march of Oxford towards Rome, viâ Littlemore. Vain was the prelatical thunder to prevent a division favourable to Lord Palmerston's cabinet. What "bell, book, and candle" might have done after times past so wielded, we do not presume to guess. Lord Derby took nothing by his labour but the consolatory application to himself once used by Falstaff: "It was my vocation, Hal!”

Thus far things bore an aspect highly favourable to the administration, supported as the foregoing divisions were by the unmistakable feeling of the public.

Mr. Cobden having moved a resolution condemning the Chinese war, Mr. Disraeli, with breathless eagerness and his accustomed tenacity of the principle of "any means to an end," declared the vote should be considered one of censure on ministers. What the honourable gentleman saw could not be carried by his own party in a straightforward line, he adroitly hoped to obtain by one that was crooked. The motion of Mr. Cobden had a different object in view, namely, to condemn all war. On this ground, from forty to fifty members voted with Mr. Cobden, who would not vote from Mr. Disraeli's object any more than for his resumption of the Chancellorship of the Exchequer. He knows this, and the weakness of his own political animalcule; but with his customary aim of revenge, if not victory, he turned the motion to account by the aid of those who repudiated his doctrines. Besides Mr. Cobden's peace party, there was that of the late friends of Sir Robert Peel. They dried up their liquid sorrows-sorrows like those of the dame of Ephesus. Solaced by the consideration of their old love, all past quarrels were forgiven. This last party, on the eve of fusion, consented to be swallowed up or amalgamated with the more numerous body attached to Lord Derby's standard and that of his man Friday in the Commons. Led by Mr. Gladstone, this band of "heroes," as Mr. Disraeli would phrase it, must cause two leaders hereafter in the House to one party, for there cannot but be a rivalry between such ambitious personages. The one character so profitable to study for the inconsistency of an unprincipled political career, and the other in addition to that virtue, as a beautiful example of the transitory nature of political weeping.

war.

Unluckily, the object of Mr. Cobden was to support his Peace Society ideas, which cannot be realised, let the honourable gentleman and his friends think as they may; we sincerely wish they could. The Petersburg embassy from Birmingham to the Czar Nicholas had no effect on the late The pugnacity of man, like that of insects and animals, is a part of his nature: a puzzle to the good in the ordination of the mundane economy. In the present case, the philanthropic Tartar Yeh, who, with his name, so well answers the Quakers "nay" in the matter, became the adopted of well-meaning and too sanguine oppositionists, especially where bohea and souchong were likely to be troubled. How it might be if

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