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ration of these middle men, and productive of little benefit to, and even against the will of the actual workmen. They are, in the little imperium of the factory, the equivalent to the feudal barons.

In a few branches of the silk trade, in the elegance of pattern, and in some few dyes, the Lyons manufacturer still has a pre-eminence. The draughtsman and dyer are educated in the branches of science and fine art connected with their trade. Science and good taste in colours and patterns are more diffused in France by education, social habits, and cultivation even among the working class, than among our middle class. In every departmental town, a public school of design for the working class, and exhibitions of models, and objects connected with the cultivation of taste, are established. Elegance, and variety of fashion in patterns, can, it is probable, never be overtaken by machinery, or by the class of workmen who are but parts in a machine, so well as by the manual labour of independent workmen of taste and skill under the French system. In the figured stuffs in which hand-labour is not and cannot be superseded by machinery on account of the changeable and short-lived fashion, the French workmen excel ours, and can work 25 per cent. cheaper. Fashion is too evanescent and variable to be followed up closely by machinery; and our corn laws, and other taxes affecting labour, turn the balance against us, where hand-labour is in competition with hand-labour. It is, however, a remarkable sign of the times, that what is called fashion in colours, patterns, and materials of dress, appears to be growing less changeable and fantastic as the world grows older. As the body of the middle and lower classes, and not merely the court and highest class, become consumers, and regulate the market, good taste, or taste with reference to the useful in its requirements, becomes more prevalent, and its application more steady. One no where sees now, as fifty years ago, except, it may be, in remote little German towns, sky

walking the streets in silk stockings, silk breeches, and powdered hair. The taste of the middle class, the mass of the consumers, has invaded the empire of fashion, and, in fact, sets the fashion to the higher classes; and the nobleman now would be laughed at, who appeared in any other shape, colour, or material of clothing, than the well-dressed tradesman. Exclusiveness, the soul of fashion, cannot exist in the present cheap, extensive production of clothing material. This greater steadiness of fashion with the great mass of the consumers of cloth, cotton, and silk, and the longer endurance, and greater extension of the demand for any fashion that once gets established, enable machinery and large capital to work even upon objects which would have been left formerly to hand-work; and the field for hand-loom weavers is narrowed to the production of a few fancy articles. The hand-loom weavers in the silk trade in Lyons appear to have been for the last hundred years in no superior or more prosperous condition than those in Spitalfields.

As far back as 1740, it appears by a petition to the local authorities at Lyons for raising the rates of weaving the ell of silk stuff, that the earnings of a master-weaver with three looms in full work all the year fell short of the necessary expense of a family living in the poorest way. The statement of the handloom weavers reckons 296 working days (52 Sundays, 17 holidays, and 6 days of military town guard duty, being deducted), and reckons 800 ells a year the production of each loom. Bread is taken at 2 sous per lb., and 10 lbs. as the daily allowance of a man, his wife, two children, and a journeyman. Meat is taken at 6 sous, and 21lbs. daily for such a family, and wine 1 pint, at 6 sous; and to meet this condition of subsistence with such a family in full work, the earnings are shown to be deficient. How then has this class of operatives existed through a century? By going down lower in the scale of subsistence, in the enjoyment of the comforts and necessaries of life. It is impossible to foresee how low the condition of many masses of popu

lation may be reduced in the working manufacturing classes. It has no minimum of depression, as there appears to be in the condition of the working agricultural class. The reproduction of the husbandman's food, and of seed for the following crop, is the point below which the condition of the labouring husbandman cannot permanently fall. Population and cultivation stop at that point; and overproduction is a good, not an evil, where the producers are themselves the principal consumers. In manufacturing industry there is no such defined terminus. Labour and production go on, whether food and cost are reproduced by the operatives or not; and overproduction is followed by famine to them. The very prosperity of one great body reduces another great body to want in manufacturing industry. One would almost think there is a balance point in social well-being, which society has already reached, and that now the higher one end is mounting, the lower the other end is descending. Although the peculiar manufacture of Lyons, the silk weaving, is declining, the country around Lyons is flourishing. Building, repairing, whitewashing, are going on briskly in the villages. New cotton or flax factories, iron-works, and steam-engine chimneys are rising along the river side. Steam-boats, rail-roads from coal works and quarries, river craft carrying goods, iron suspension-bridges across the stream, are far more numerous on the Rhone than on the Rhine-bustle and business far more advanced. Industry, in spite of the trammels on its free development, is on the move in this part of France, although its objects are changing from the manufacturing of one single article of luxury, silk, to the production of a great variety of useful articles, for which the command of coal and water carriage in this district gives peculiar facilities. This will be a great manufacturing district, and only wants civil liberty to be so: it surpasses already, in the activity on the waters, and in the numbers of new factories, and manufacturing villages, and es

districts on the Rhine. Here they are doing, there they are but dreaming of doing.

The ancient palace of the popes at Avignon is now converted into a barrack for infantry. The popes resided at Avignon full 73 years, from 1303 to 1376. There is nothing remaining of those times, but the outward shell of the buildings, and the names of the different chambers - the chamber of inquisition, the chamber of torture, the chamber of execution, and among the inhabitants of the town and neighbourhood, it is said, a tendency to favour despotism, fanaticism, and legitimacy in royal rights. The chambers in the old papal residence, so agreeably handed down to posterity by their religious uses, and in which the names of victims are said to be still legible on the plaster of the walls, subject to the doubt if writing was so ordinary an accomplishment in the fourteenth century—were washed in blood at the revolution. The crimes and sufferings spread over a century were surpassed in a day. And now these chambers of blood resound with the careless laugh and merry vaudeville of the young soldiery. A French barrack is worth seeing. The beds appear particularly good. Each private had a bed to himself on an iron bedstead. In our service, two and even three men are laid in one bed. The French peasantry, even in the lowest condition, are accustomed to good beds. A high pile of bedding seems a kind of ornamental furniture indispensably necessary in their ideas of housekeeping; and you see even in the singleroom households of the poor, a kind of display in the neatness and quantity of bedding. This taste has probably spread so widely as to act upon the military accommodation. Each bed had a brown cloth covering neatly covering the bed-clothes, and the sheets and mattresses were as clean and nicely done up as in any hospital. In this barrack it struck me as characteristic of the good relation between the officers and men, that on the inside of the door was stuck up a notice, that it would not be reputable to be seen in certain

streets mentioned, on account of houses of ill-fame in them.

A great quantity of very good wit, which might have served the owners for any of their lawful occasions, was expended some years ago upon the subject of cookery. The French began with their Science Gastronomique, their Almanacs des Gourmands, their saucepans and gridirons of honour, and a thousand equally witty sayings and doings. Our manufacturers of roast and boiled, and printed paper, our Kitcheners, Udes, and Glasses, were not behind, and mixed up their flour and melted butter with wit and philosophy as well as their neighbours. The subject is not quite so ridiculous as it has been made. The food of a people, and its preparation, are closely connected with their industry and civilisation. The female half of the human species do little other work in most communities but cook and much more than half of all the work of the other moiety is applied to the direct production of the materials for cooking. The least observant and least hungry of travellers abroad is struck with admiration at the readiness with which a dinner of eight or ten dishes of various eatables makes its appearance in foreign inns, and remembers with no patriotic feeling the neverready perpetual mutton-chop and mashed potatoes of the English road. Yet much of our national prosperity and wealth, much of the capital and productiveness of our labouring and middle classes, and especially of the industrious who are in a state of transition from the one class to the other, may be ascribed to the greater simplicity and frugality of diet among us: and particularly to the great saving of time and labour in its preparation. A working man, tradesman, or man in the labouring or middle class in ordinary employment, sits down abroad to a much better dinner than a man of good realised capital and in a thriving way, with us. The three or four well-dressed dishes, principally of legumes or other cheap materials, cost the foreigner

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