Ginx's Baby
Edward Jenkins?

Part 1 out of 2

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His Birth and other Misfortunes
{by Edward Jenkins?? 1838-1910??}

CRITIC.--I never read a more improbable story in my life.

AUTHOR.--Notwithstanding, it may be true.

I. Ab initio
II. Home, sweet Home!
III. Work and Ideas
IV. Digressive, and may be skipped without mutilating the History
V. Reasons and Resolves
VI. The Antagonism of Law and Necessity
VII. Malthus and Man
VIII. The Baby's First Translation

I. The Milk of Human Kindness, Mother's Milk, and the Milk of
the Word
II. The Protestant Detectoral Association
III. The Sacrament of Baptism
IV. Law on Behalf of Gospel
V. Magistrate's Law
VI. Popery and Protestantism in the Queen's Bench
VII. A Protestor, but not a Protestant
VIII. "See how these Christians love one another"
IX. Good Samaritans, and Good-Samaritan Twopences
X. The Force--and a Specimen of its Weakness
XI. The Unity of the Spirit and the Bond of Peace
XII. No Funds--no Faith, no Works
XIII. In transitu

I. Parochial Knots--to be untied without Prejudice
II. A Board of Guardians
III. "The World is my Parish"
IV. Without Prejudice to any one but the Guardians
V. An Ungodly Jungle
VI. Parochial Benevolence--and another Translation

I. Moved on
II. Club Ideas
III. A thorough-paced Reformer--if not a Revolutionary
IV. Very Broad Views
V. Party Tactics--and Political Obstructions to Social Reform
VI. Amateur Debating in a High Legislative Body

The Last Chapter

I.--Ab initio.
The name of the father of Ginx's Baby was Ginx. By a not
unexceptional coincidence, its mother was Mrs. Ginx. The gender
of Ginx's Baby was masculine.

On the day when our hero was born, Mr. and Mrs. Ginx were living
at Number Five, Rosemary Street, in the City of Westminster. The
being then and there brought into the world was not the only
human entity to which the title of "Ginx's Baby" was or had been
appropriate. Ginx had been married to Betsy Hicks at St. John's,
Westminster, on the twenty-fifth day of October, 18--, as appears
from the "marriage lines" retained by Betsy Ginx, and carefully
collated by me with the original register. Our hero was their
thirteenth child. Patient inquiry has enabled me to verify the
following history of their propagations. On July the
twenty-fifth, the year after their marriage, Mrs. Ginx was safely
delivered of a girl. No announcement of this appeared in the

On the tenth of April following, the whole neighborhood,
including Great Smith Street, Marsham Street, Great and Little
Peter Streets, Regent Street, Horseferry Road, and Strutton
Ground, was convulsed by the report that a woman named Ginx had
given birth to "a triplet," consisting of two girls and a boy.
The news penetrated to Dean's Yard and the ancient school of
Westminster. The Dean, who accepted nothing on trust, sent to
verify the report, his messenger bearing a bundle of baby-clothes
from the Dean's wife, who thought that the mother could scarcely
have provided for so large an addition to her family. The
schoolboys, on their way to the play-ground at Vincent Square,
slyly diverged to have a look at the curiosity, paying sixpence a
head to Mrs. Ginx's friend and crony, Mrs. Spittal, who pocketed
the money, and said nothing about it to the sick woman. THIS
birth was announced in all the newspapers throughout the kingdom,
with the further news that Her Majesty the Queen had been
graciously pleased to forward to Mrs. Ginx the sum of three

What could have possessed the woman I can't say, but about a
twelvemonth after, Mrs. Ginx, with the assistance of two doctors
hastily fetched from the hospital by her frightened husband,
nearly perished in a fresh effort of maternity. This time two
sons and two daughters fell to the lot of the happy pair. Her
Majesty sent four pounds. But whatever peace there was at home,
broils disturbed the street. The neighbors, who had sent for the
police on the occasion, were angered by a notoriety which was
becoming uncomfortable to them, and began to testify their
feelings in various rough ways. Ginx removed his family to
Rosemary Street, where, up to a year before the time when Ginx's
Baby was born, his wife had continued to add to her offspring
until the tale reached one dozen. It was then that Ginx
affectionately but firmly begged that his wife would consider her
family ways, since, in all conscience, he had fairly earned the
blessedness of the man who hath his quiver full of them; and
frankly gave her notice that, as his utmost efforts could
scarcely maintain their existing family, if she ventured to
present him with any more, either single, or twins, or triplets,
or otherwise, he would most assuredly drown him, or her, or them
in the water-butt, and take the consequences.

II.--Home, sweet Home!

The day on which Ginx uttered his awful threat was that next to
the one wherein number twelve had drawn his first breath. His
wife lay on the bed which, at the outset of wedded life, they had
purchased secondhand in Strutton Ground for the sum of nine
shillings and sixpence. SECOND-HAND! It had passed through, at
least, as many hands as there were afterwards babies born upon
it. Twelfth or thirteenth hand, a vagabond, botched bedstead,
type of all the furniture in Ginx's rooms, and in numberless
houses through the vast city. Its dimensions were 4 feet 6
inches by 6 feet. When Ginx, who was a stout navvy, and Mrs.
Ginx, who was, you may conceive, a matronly woman, were in it,
there was little vacant space about them. Yet, as they were
forced to find resting-places for all the children, it not seldom
happened that at least one infant was perilously wedged between
the parental bodies; and latterly they had been so pressed for
room in the household that two younglings were nestled at the
foot of the bed. Without foot-board or pillows, the lodgment of
these infants was precarious, since any fatuous movement of
Ginx's legs was likely to expel them head-first. However they
were safe, for they were sure to fall on one or other of their
brothers or sisters.

I shall be as particular as a valuer, and describe what I have
seen. The family sleeping-room measured 13 feet 6 inches by 14

Opening out of this, and again on the landing of the third-floor,
was their kitchen and sitting-room; it was not quite so large as
the other. This room contained a press, an old chest of drawers,
a wooden box once used for navvy's tools, three chairs, a stool,
and some cooking utensils. When, therefore, one little Ginx had
curled himself up under a blanket on the box, and three more had
slipped beneath a tattered piece of carpet under the table,
there still remained five little bodies to be bedded. For them
an old straw mattress, limp enough to be rolled up and thrust
under the bed, was at night extended on the floor. With this, and
a patchwork quilt, the five were left to pack themselves together
as best they could. So that, if Ginx, in some vision of the
night, happened to be angered, and struck out his legs in navvy
fashion, it sometimes came to pass that a couple of children
tumbled upon the mass of infantile humanity below.

Not to be described are the dinginess of the walls, the smokiness
of the ceilings, the grimy windows, the heavy, ever-murky
atmosphere of these rooms. They were 8 feet 6 inches in height,
and any curious statist can calculate the number of cubic feet of
air which they afforded to each person.

The other side of the street was 14 feet distant. Behind, the
backs of similar tenements came up black and cowering over the
little yard of Number Five. As rare, in the well thus formed,
was the circulation of air as that of coin in the pockets of the
inhabitants. I have seen the yard; let me warn you, if you
are fastidious, not to enter it. Such of the filth of the house
as could not, at night, be thrown out of the front windows, was
there collected, and seldom, if ever, removed. What became of
it? What becomes of countless such accretions in like places?
Are a large proportion of these filthy atoms absorbed by human
creatures living and dying, instead of being carried away by
scavengers and inspectors? The forty-five big and little lodgers
in the house were provided with a single office in the corner of
the yard. It had once been capped by a cistern, long since rotted

* * * * *

The street was at one time the prey of the gas company; at
another, of the drainage contractors. They seemed to delight in
turning up the fetid soil, cutting deep trenches through various
strata of filth, and piling up for days or weeks matter that
reeked with vegetable and animal decay. One needs not affirm
that Rosemary Street was not so called from its fragrance. If
the Ginxes and their neighbors preserved any semblance of health
in this place, the most popular guardian on the board must own it
a miracle. They, poor people, knew nothing of "sanitary reform,"
"sanitary precautions," "zymotics," "endemics," "epidemics,"
"deodorizers," or "disinfectants." They regarded disease with
the apathy of creatures who felt it to be inseparable from
humanity, and with the fatalism of despair.

Gin was their cardinal prescription, not for cure, but for
oblivion: "Sold everywhere." A score of palaces flourished
within call of each other in that dismal district--garish, rich-
looking dens, drawing to the support of their vulgar glory the
means, the lives, the eternal destinies of the wrecked masses
about them. Veritable wreckers they who construct these haunts,
viler than the wretches who place false beacons and plunder
bodies on the beach. Bring down the real owners of these places,
and show them their deadly work! Some of them leading
Philanthropists, eloquent at Missionary meetings and Bible
Societies, paying tribute to the Lord out of the pockets of dying
drunkards, fighting glorious battles for slaves, and manfully
upholding popular rights. My rich publican--forgive the
pun--before you pay tithes of mint and cummin, much more before
you claim to be a disciple of a certain Nazarene, take a lesson
from one who restored fourfold the money he had wrung from honest
toil, or reflect on the case of the man to whom it was said, "Go
sell all thou hast, and give to the poor." The lips from which
that counsel dropped offered some unpleasant alternatives,
leaving out one, however, which nowadays may yet reach you--the
contempt of your kind.

III.--Work and Ideas.

I return again to Ginx's menace to his wife, who was suckling her
infant at the time on the bed. For her he had an animal
affection that preserved her from unkindness, even in his cups.
His hand had never unmanned itself by striking her, and rarely
indeed did it injure any one else. He wrestled not against
flesh and blood, or powers, or principalities, or wicked spirits
in high places. He struggled with clods and stones, and primeval
chaos. His hands were horny with the fight, and his nature had
perhaps caught some of the dull ruggedness of the things
wherewith he battled. Hard and with a will had he worked through
the years of wedded life, and, to speak him fair, he had acted
honestly, within the limits of his knowledge and means, for the
good of his family. How narrow were those limits! Every week he
threw into the lap of Mrs. Ginx the eighteen or twenty shillings
which his strength and temperance enabled him continuously to
earn, less sixpence reserved for the public-house, whither he
retreated on Sundays after the family dinner. A dozen children
overrunning the space in his rooms was then a strain beyond the
endurance of Ginx. Nor had he the heart to try the common plan,
and turn his children out of doors on the chance of their being
picked up in a raid of Sunday School teachers. So he turned out
himself to talk with the humbler spirits of the "Dragon," or
listen sleepily while alehouse demagogues prescribed remedies for
State abuses.

Our friend was nearly as guiltless of knowledge as if Eve had
never rifled the tree whereon it grew. Vacant of policies were
his thoughts; innocent he of ideas of state-craft. He knew there
was a Queen; he had seen her. Lords and Commons were to him vague
deities possessing strange powers. Indeed, he had been present
when some of his better-informed companions had recognized with
cheers certain gentlemen,--of whom Ginx's estimate was expressed
by a reference to his test of superiority to himself in that
which he felt to be greatest within him--"I could lick 'em with
my little finger" --as the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the
Prime Minister. Little recked he of their uses or abuses. The
functions of Government were to him Asian mysteries. He only
felt that it ought to have a strong arm, like the brawny member
wherewith he preserved order in his domestic kingdom, and
therefore generally associated Government with the Police. In
his view these were to clear away evil-doers and leave every one
else alone. The higher objects of Government were, if at all,
outlined in the shadowiest form in his imagination. Government
imposed taxes--that he was obliged to know. Government
maintained the parks; for that he thanked it. Government made
laws, but what they were, or with what aim or effects made, he
knew not, save only that by them something was done to raise or
depress the prices of bread, tea, sugar, and other necessaries.
Why they should do so he never conceived--I am not sure that he
cared. Legislation sometimes pinched him, but darkness so hid
from him the persons and objects of the legislators that he could
not criticise the theories which those powerful beings were
subjecting to experiment at his cost. I must, at any risk, say
something about this in a separate chapter.

IV.--Digressive, and may be skipped without mutilating
the History.

I stop here to address any of the following characters, should he
perchance read these memoirs:
You, Mr. Statesman--if there be such;
Mr. Pseudo-Statesman, Placeman, Party Leader, Wirepuller;
Mr. Amateur Statesman, Dilettante Lord, Civil Servant;
Mr. Clubman, Litterateur, Newspaper Scribe;
Mr. People's Candidate, Demagogue, Fenian Spouter;
or whoever you may be, professing to know aught or do anything in
matters of policy, consider, what I am sure you have never fairly
weighed, the condition of a man whose clearest notion of
Government is derived from the Police! Imagine one who had never
seen a polyp trying to construct an ideal of the animal, from a
single tentacle swinging out from the tangle of weed in which the
rest was wrapped! How then any more can you fancy that a man to
whose sight and knowledge the only part of government practically
exposed is the strong process of police, shall form a proper
conception of the functions, reasons, operations, and relations
of Government; or even build up an ideal of anything but a
haughty, unreasonable, antagonistic, tax-imposing FORCE! And how
can you rule such a being except as you rule a dog, by that which
alone he understands--the dog-whip of the constable! Given in a
country a majority of creatures like these, and surely despotism
is its properest complement. But when they exist, as they exist
in England to-day, in hundreds of thousands, in town and country,
think what a complication they introduce into your theoretic free
system of government. Acts of Parliament passed by a
"freely-elected" House of Commons, and an hereditary House of
Lords under the threats of freely-electing citizens, however pure
in intention and correct in principle, will not seem to him to be
the resultants of every wish in the community so much as
dictations by superior strength. To these the obedience he will
render will not be the loving assent of his heart, but a
begrudged concession to circumstance. Your awe-invested
legislature is not viewed as his friend and brother-helper, but
his tyrant. Therefore the most natural bent of his
workman-statesmanship--a rough, bungling affair--will be to tame
you--you who ought to be his Counsellor and Friend. When he
finds that your legislative action exerts upon him a repressive
and restraining force he will curse you as its author, because he
sees not the springs you are working. Should he even be a little
more advanced in knowledge than our friend Ginx, and learn that
he helps to elect the Parliament to make laws on behalf of
himself and his fellow-citizens, he will scarce trust the
assembly which is supposed to represent him. Will he, like a
good citizen and a politic, accept with dignity and self-control
the decision of a majority against his prejudices: or will he not
regard the whole Wittenagemote with suspicion, contempt, or even
hatred? See him rush madly to Trafalgar Square meetings, Hyde
Park demonstrations, perhaps to Lord George Gordon Riots, as if
there were no less perilous means of publishing his opinions!
There wily men may lead his unconscious intellect, and stir his
passions, and direct his forces against his own--and his
children's good.

Did it ever occur to you, or any of you, how many voters cannot
read, and how many more, though they can read, are unable to
apprehend reasons of statesmanship?--that even newspapers cannot
inform them, since they have not the elementary knowledge needed
for the comprehension of those things which are discussed in
them; nay, that for want of understanding the same they may
terribly distort political aims and consequences?

Might it not be worth while for you, gentlemen--may it not be
your duty to devise ways and means for conveying such elementary
instruction by good street-preachers on politics and economy, or
even political bible- women or colporteurs, and so to make clear
to the understanding of every voter what are the reasons and aims
of every act of Legislation, Home Administration, and Foreign
Policy? If you do not find out some way to do this he may turn
round upon you--I hope he may-- and insist on annually-elected
parliaments, and thus oblige ambitious state-mongers, in the
rivalry of place, to come to him and declare more often their
wishes and objects. Other attractions may be found in that
solution: such as the untying of some knots of electoral
difficulty, and removing incitements to corruption. Ten thousand
pounds for one year's power were a high price even to a
contractor. Think then whether at any cost some general
political education must not be attempted, since there is a
spirit breathing on the waters, and how it shall convulse them is
no indifferent matter to you or to me. Everywhere around us are
unhewn rocks stirred with a strange motion. Leave these chaotic
fragments of humanity to be hewn into rough shape by coarse
artists seeking only a petty profit, unhandy, immeasurably
impudent; or dress them by your teaching--teaching which is the
highest, noblest, purest, most efficient function of Government,
which ought to be the most lofty ambition of statesmanship--to be
civic corner-stones polished after the similitude of a palace.

V.--Reasons and Resolves.

Ginx has been waiting through three chapters to explain his
truculence upon the birth of his twelfth child. Much explanation
is not necessary. When he looked round his nest and saw the many
open mouths about him, he might well be appalled to have another
added to them. His children were not chameleons, yet they were
already forced to be content with a proportion of air for their
food. And even the air was bad. They were pallid and pinched.
How they were clad will ever be a mystery, save to the poor woman
who strung the limp rags together and Him who watched the noble
patience and sacrifice of a daily heroism. Of her own
unsatisfied cravings, and the dense motherly horrors that
sometimes brooded over her while she nursed these infants, let me
refrain from speaking, since if as vividly depicted as they were
real, you, Madam, could not endure to read of them. Her poor,
unintelligent mind clung tenaciously to the controverted
aphorism, "Where God sends mouths he sends food to fill them."
Believing that there was a God, and that He must be kind, she
trusted in this as a truth, and perhaps an all-seeing eye reading
some quaint characters on her simple heart, viewed them not too
nearly, but had regard to their general import, for, as she
expressed it, "Thank God! they had always been able to get

In the rush and tumult of the world it is likely that the summum
bonum of nine-tenths of mankind is embraced in that purely
negative happiness--to get along. Not to perish: to open eyes,
however wearily, on a new morning: to satisfy with something, no
matter what, a craving appetite: to close eyes at night under
some shadow or shelter: or, it may be, in certain ranks to walk
another day free from bankruptcy or arrest: Thank Heaven, they
are just able to get along!

Convinced that another infant straw would break his back, Ginx
calmly proposed to disconcert physical, moral, and legal
relations by drowning the straw Mrs. Ginx clinging to Number
Twelve listened aghast. If a mother can forget her sucking child
she was not that mother. The stream of her affections, though
divided into twelve rills, would not have been exhausted in
twenty-four, and her soul, forecasting its sorrow, yearned after
that nonentity Number Thirteen. She pictured to herself the
hapless strangeling borne away from her bosom by those strong
arms, and--in fact she sobbed so that Ginx grew ashamed, and
sought to comfort her by the suggestion that she could not have
any more. But she knew better.

VI.--The Antagonism of Law and Necessity.

In eighteen months, notwithstanding resolves, menaces, and
prophecies, GINX'S BABY was born. The mother hid the impending
event long, from the father. When he came to know it, he fixed
his determination by much thought and a little extra drinking.
He argued thus: "He wouldn't go on the parish. He couldn't keep
another youngster to save his life. He had never taken charity
and never would. There was nothink to do with it but drown it!"
Female friends of Mrs. Ginx bruited his intentions about the
neighborhood, so that her "time" was watched for with interest.
At last it came. One afternoon Ginx, lounging home, saw signs of
excitement around his door in Rosemary Street. A knot of women
and children awaited his coming. Passing through them he soon
learned what had happened. Poor Mrs. Ginx! Without staying to
think or argue, he took up the little stranger and bore it from
the room----

"O, O, O, Ginx! Ginx!!"

She would have risen, but a strong power called weakness pulled
her back.

* * * *

The man meanwhile had reached the street.

"Here he comes! There's the baby! He's going to do it, sure
enough!" shrieked the women. The children stood agape. He
stopped to consider. It is very well to talk about drowning your
baby, but to do it you need two things, water and opportunity.
Vauxhall Bridge was the nearest way to the former, and towards it
Ginx turned.

"Stop him!"


"Take the child from him!'

The crowd grew larger, and impeded the man's progress. Some of
his fellow-workmen stood by regarding the fun.

"Leave us aloan, naabors," shouted Ginx; "this is my own baby,
and I'll do wot I likes with it. I kent keep it; an' if I've got
anythin' I kent keep, it's best to get rid of it, ain't it? This
child's goin' over Wauxhall Bridge."

But the women clung to his arms and coattails.

"Hallo! What's all this about?" said a sharp, strong man,
well-dressed, and in good condition, coming up to the crowd;
"anothe r foundling! Confound the place, the very stones produce
babies. Where was it found?"

CHORUS (recognizing a deputy-relieving officer). It warn't found
at all; it's Ginx's baby.

OFFICER. Ginx's baby? Who's Ginx?

GINX. I am.


GINX. Well!

CHORUS. He's goin' to drown it.

OFFICER. Going to drown it? Nonsense.

GINX. I am.

OFFICER. But, bless my heart, that's murder!

GINX. No 'tain't. I've twelve already at home. Starvashon's
sure to kill this 'un. Best save it the trouble.

CHORUS. Take it away, Mr. Smug, he'll kill it if you don't.

OFFICER. Stuff and nonsense! Quite contrary to law! Why, man,
you're bound to support your child. You can't throw it off in
that way;--nor on the parish neither. Give me your name. I must
get a magistrate's order. The act of parliament is as clear as
daylight. I had a man up under it last week. "Whosoever shall
unlawfully abandon or expose any child, being under the age of
two years whereby the life of such child shall be endangered or
the health of such child shall have been or shall be likely to be
permanently injured (drowning comes under that I think) shall be
GUILTY OF a MISDEMEANOR and being convicted thereof shall be
liable at the discretion of the court to be KEPT IN PENAL
SERVITUDE for the term of three years or to be imprisoned for any
term not exceeding two years with or without hard labor."

Mr. Smug, the officer, rolled out this section in a sonorous
monotone, without stops, like a clerk of the court. It was his
pride to know by heart all the acts relating to his department,
and to bring them down upon any obstinate head that he wished to
crush. Ginx's head, however, was impervious to an act of
parliament. In his then temper, the Commination Service or St.
Ernulphus's curse would have been feathers to him. The only
feeling aroused in his mind by the words of the legislature was
one of resentment. To him they seemed unjust, because they were
hard and fast, and made no allowance for circumstances. So he

GINX. D---- the act of parliament! What's the use of saying I
shan't abandon the child, when I can't keep it alive?

OFFICER. But you're bound by law to keep it alive.

GINX. Bound to keep it alive? How am I to do it? There's the
rest on 'em there (nodding towards his house) little better nor
alive now. If that's an act of Parleyment, why don't the act of
Parleyment provide for 'em? You know what wages is, and I can't
get more than is going.

CHORUS. Yes. Why don't Parleyment provide for 'em? You take
the child, Mr. Smug.

OFFICER (regardless of grammar). ME take the child! The parish
has enough to do to take care of foundlings and children whose
parents can't or don't work. You don't suppose we will look
after the children of those who can?

GINX. Jest so. You'll bring up bastards and beggars' pups, but
you won't help an honest man to keep his head above water. This
child's head is goin' under water anyhow!" --and he prepared to
bolt, amid fresh screams from the Chorus.

VII.--Malthus and Man.

Two gentlemen, who had been observing the excitement, here came

FIRST GENTLEMAN. This is our problem again, Mr. Philosopher.

Mr. PHILOSOPHER (to Ginx). You don't know what to do with your
infant, my friend, and you think the State ought to provide for
it? I understand you to say this is your thirteenth child. How
came you to have so many?

This question, though put with profound and even melancholy
gravity, disconcerted Ginx, Officer, and Chorus, who united in a
hearty outburst of laughter.

GINX. Haw, Haw, Haw! How came I to have so many? Why my old
woman's a good un and----

In fact, after searching his mind for some clever way of putting
a comical rejoinder, Ginx laughed boisterously. There are two
aspects of a question.

PHILOSOPHER. I am serious, my friend. Did it never occur to you
that you had no right to bring children into the world unless you
could feed and clothe and educate them?

CHORUS. Laws a' mercy!

GINX. I'd like to know how I could help it, naabor. I'm a
married man.

PHILOSOPHER. Well, I will go further and say you ought not to
have married without a fair prospect of being able to provide for
any contingent increase of family.

CHORUS. Laws a' mercy!

PHILOSOPHER (waxing warm). What right had you to marry a poor
woman, and then both of you, with as little forethought as
two--a--dogs, or other brutes--to produce between you such a
multitudinous progeny--

GINX. Civil words, naabor; don't call my family hard names.

PHILOSOPHER. Then let me say, such a monstrous number of
children as thirteen? You knew, as you said just now, that wages
were wages and did not vary much. And yet you have gone on
subdividing your resources by the increase of what must become a
degenerate offspring. (To the Chorus) All you workpeople are
doing it. Is it not time to think about these things and stop
the indiscriminate production of human beings, whose lives you
cannot properly maintain? Ought you not to act more like
reflective creatures and less like brutes? As if breeding were
the whole object of life! How much better for you, my friend, if
you had never married at all, than to have had the worry of a
wife and children all these years.

The philosopher had gone too far. There were some angry murmurs
among the women and Ginx's face grew dark. He was thinking of
"all those years" and the poor creature that from morning to
night and Sunday to Sunday, in calm and storm, had clung to his
rough affections: and the bright eyes, and the winding arms so
often trellised over his tremendous form, and the coy tricks and
laughter that had cheered so many tired hours. He may have been
much of a brute, but he felt that, after all, that sort of thing
was denied to dogs and pigs. Before he could translate his
thoughts into words or acts a shrewd-looking, curly-haired
stonemason, who stood by with his tin on his arm, cut into the

STONEMASON. Your doctrines won't go down here, Mr. Philosopher.
I've 'eard of them before. I'd just like to ask you what a man's
to do and what a woman's to do if they don't marry: and if they
do, how can you honestly hinder them from having any children?

The stonemason had rudely struck out the cardinal issues of the

PHILOSOPHER. Well, to take the last point first, there are
physical and ethical questions involved in it, which it is hard
to discuss before such an audience as this.

STONEMASON. But you must discuss 'em, if you wish us to change
our ways, and stop breeding.

PHILOSOPHER. Very well: perhaps you are right. But, again, I
should first have to establish a basis for my arguments, by
showing that the conception of marriage entertained by you all is
a low one. It is not simply a breeding matter. The beauty and
value of the relation lies in its educational effects--the
cultivation of mutual sentiments and refinements of great
importance to a community.

STONEMASON. Ay! Very beautiful and refining to Mr. and Mrs.
Philosopher, but I'd like to know where the country would have
been if our fathers had held to that view of matrimony? Why,
ain't it in natur' for all beings to pair, and have young? an'
you say we ain't to do it! I think a statesman ought to make
something out of what's nateral to human beings, and not try to
change their naturs. Besides, ain't there good of another kind
to be got out of the relation of parents and children? Did you
ever have a child yourself?

GINX (contemplating the Philosopher's physique). HE have a
youngster! He couldn't.

CHORUS. Ha! Ha! Ha!

STONEMASON. I don't believe in yer humbuggin' notions. They
lead to lust and crime;--I'm told they do in France. If you
yourself haven't the human natur in you to know it, I'll tell
you, and we can all tell you that as a rule if the healthy
desires of natur ain't satisfied in a honest way, they will be in
another. You can't stop eating by passin' an act of Parleyment
to stop it. And as for yer eddication and cultivation, that
makes no difference. We know something here about yer eddicated
men;--more than they think. Who is it we meet about the streets
late at night, goin' to the gay houses? Some of 'em stand near
as high as you, but that don't alter their natur. They have
their passions like other men; and eddication don't keep 'em
down. Well, if that's the case, how can you ask people of our
sort to put on the curb, or make us do it? Are we to live more
like beasts than we are now, or do what's worse than murder? I
don't see no other way. Among us I tell you, sir, three-fourths
of our eddication, is eddication of the heart. We have to learn
to be human, kind, self-denyin', and I think this makes better
men, as a rule, than head-larnin'; tho' I don't despise that,
neither. But you don't suppose head-citizens would fight for
their country like men with wives and children behind 'em; why
they don't even at home work for daily food like a man with wife
and babies to provide for!

The stonemason was above his class--one of those shrewd men that
"the people called Methodists" get hold of, and use among the
lower orders, under the name of "local preachers;" men who learn
to think and speak better than their fellows. The Philosopher
testified some admiration by listening attentively, and was about
to reply, but the Chorus was tired, and the women would not hear

CHORUS. Best get out o' this. We don't want any o' yer
filhosophy. Go and get childer' of yer own, &c., &c.

The Philosopher and his friend departed, carrying with them
unsolved the problem they had brought.

VIII.--The Baby's First Translation.

The stonemason had been the hero of the moment; now attention
centred on our own hero. Ginx hurried off again, but as the
crowd opened before him, he was met, and his mad career stayed,
by a slight figure, feminine, draped in black to the feet,
wearing a curiously framed white-winged hood above her pale face,
and a large cross suspended from her girdle. He could not run
her down.

NUN. Stop, MAN! Are you mad? Give me the child.

He placed the little bundle in her arms. She uncovered the
queer, ruby face, and kissed it. Ginx had not looked at the face
before, but after seeing it, and the act of this woman, he could
not have touched a hair of his child's head. His purpose died
from that moment, though his perplexity was still alive.

NUN. Let me have it. I will take it to the Sisters' Home, and
it shall live there. Your wife may come and nurse it. We will
take charge of it.

GINX. And you won't send it back again? You'll take it for good
and all?

NUN. O, yes.

GINX. Good. Give us yer hand.

A little white hand came out from under her burthen, and was at
once half-crushed in Ginx's elephantine grasp.

GINX. Done. Thank'ee, missus. Come, mates, I'll stand a drink.

A few minutes after, the woman of the cross, who had been up to
comfort the poor mother, fluttered with her white wings down
Rosemary Street, carrying in her arms Ginx's Baby.



I.--The Milk of Human Kindness, Mother's Milk, and the
Milk of the Word.

The early days of his residence at the Home of the Sisters of
Misery, in Winkle Street, was the Eden of Ginx's Baby's
existence. Themselves innocent of a mother's experiences, the
sisters were free to give play to their affections in a novel
direction, and to assume a sort of spiritual maternity that was
lucky for the changeling. He was nestled in kind serge-covered
arms: kisses rained upon him from chaste lips. A slight scandal
thrilled the convent upon the discovery of his sex, which had of
course been a pure matter of conjecture to Sister Pudicitia when
she rescued him; but enthusiasm can overcome anything. The
awkward questions foreshadowed in the discovery were left to be
considered when their growing importance should demand upon them
the judgment of the archbishop. Visions of an unusual sanctity
to be fostered in the pure regions of the convent, and to be sent
on a mission into the world to attest the power of their
spiritual discipline, began to haunt the brains of the
sequestered nuns. Might not this infant be an embryo saint,
destined for a great work in the heretical wilderness out of
which he had come? How little healthy food the brains must have
had wherein these insane dreams were excited by our innocent
baby! Hardly did the sacred spinsters forecast what was in store
for them when he should be teething.

But Ginx's Baby was in a religious atmosphere, and that is always
surcharged with electricity. His lot must have been above that
of any other human being if he could long have remained in such a
climate unvisited by thunder. The mother had been permitted to
attend at the Home with the same regularity as the milkman, to
discharge her maternal duties. Then with the rise of the
visionary projects just mentioned the gravest doubts began to
agitate the fertile and casuistic mind of the Lady Superior. The
holier her ideal St. Ginx of the future, the more to be deplored
was any heretical taint in the present. Holy mother! Was it not
perhaps eminently perilous to his spiritual purity that an
unbeliever like Mrs. Ginx should bring unconsecrated milk into
the convent to be administered to this suckling of the Church!
In her uneasiness she appealed to Father Certificatus, the
conventual confessor. He gave his opinion in the following

"The very grave question you have put to me has given me
much anxiety. It could not but do so since it occupied, I knew,
so fully your own holy reflections. I pondered it during the
night while I repeated one hundred Aves on my knees, and I think
the Blessed Virgin has vouchsafed her assistance.

"I understood you to say you thought that the physical health of
the infant, so singularly and miraculously thrown upon your care,
required the offices of his heretic mother, and yet that you felt
how inconsistent it was with the noble future we contemplate for
him, that he should receive unorthodox lacteal sustentation. In
this you are but following the usage of the Church in all ages,
for She has ever enjoined the advantage of infusing Her doctrines
into Her children with the mother's milk.

"Three courses only appear to me to be open to us. First, we may
try to work upon the mother's feelings, and on behalf of her
child induce her to avail herself of the inestimable privileges
of the Church in which he is fostered. Secondly, should she
repel us--and these lower class heretics are even brutally
refractory--we might at least allure her to allow us to make with
holy water the sign of the Cross upon the natural reservoirs of
infant nourishment each time before she approaches the infant.
This, besides overcoming the immediate difficulty and securing
for the child a supply of sanctified food, might open the way for
the entrance into her own bosom of the milk of the word.
Thirdly, should she reject these proposals, I see nothing for it
but to forbid her to have access to her infant, and, commending
him to the care of the Holy Mother, to feed him with pap or other
suitable nourishment, previously consecrated by me in its crude
state, and prepared by the most holy hands of your community.
Thus we may hope to shield the young soul in its present
freshness from contact with carnal elements.
"Your loving Father in, &c.,

On receiving this letter the Superioress conferred not with flesh
and blood, but sent for Mrs. Ginx. That worthy woman was not
enchanted with her child's position. I have hinted that her
faith was simple, but in proportion to its simplicity it was
strongly-rooted in her nature. 'Tis not infrequent to find it
so. Lengthy creeds and confessions of faith are apt to extend
the strength and fervor of belief over too wide a surface. In
the close frame of some single article will be concentrated the
whole energy of the soul. The first formula, "Repent and believe
in the Lord Jesus Christ," was maintained with a heat that became
less intense, though more distributed, in the insertion of an
Athanasian creed. Mrs. Ginx's creed was succinct.


I believe in God, giver of bread, meat, money, and health.

This she maintained, with indifferent ritual and devotional
observances. But there was to Mrs. Ginx's faith a corollary or
secondary creed, only needed to meet special emergencies.


1. I believe in the Church of England.
2. I believe in Heaven and Hell.
3. (A negative article) I hate Popery, priests, and the Devil.

When her husband made his fatal gift to the nun, this third
article of his wife's belief, or unbelief, stirred up and waxed

Said the Lady Superior, "My good woman, your child thrives under
the care of Holy Mother Church."

"Yes'm, he thrives well," replies Mrs. Ginx, repeating no more of
Sister Suspiciosa's sentence, "an' I've 'ad more milk than ever
for the darlin' this time, thank God."

"And the Holy Virgin."

"I dunno about her," cries Mrs. Ginx emphatically, perhaps not
seeing congruity between a virgin and the subject of

"And the Holy Virgin," repeated the nun, "who interests herself
in all mothers. She has thus blessed you that your child may be
made strong for the work of the Church. Do you not see a miracle
is worked within you to prove Her goodness? This, no doubt, is
an evidence to you of Her wish to bless you and take you for Her
own. I beseech you listen to Her voice, and come and enter Her

"If you mean the Virgin Mary, mum, I ain't a idolater, beggin'
yer parding," says Mrs. Ginx; "an' tho' I wouldn't for the world
offend them as has been so kind to my child, an' saved it from
that deer little creetur bein' thrown over Wauxhall Bridge--an'
Ginx ought to be ashamed of hisself, so he ought-- I ain't
Papish, mum, and I ain't dispoged, with twelve on 'em there at
home all Protestant to the back bone, to turn Papish now, an' so
I 'ope an' pray, mum," says Mrs. Ginx, roaring and crying, "you
ain't agoin' to make Papish of my flesh an' blood. O dear! O

The Lady Superior shut her ears; she had raised a familiar spirit
and could not lay it. She temporized.

"You know your husband has given the child to us. It will be
called the infant Ambrosius."

"Dear, dear!" sighed Mrs. Ginx, "what a name! "

"We wish him to be kept from any worldly taint, and by-and-by his
saintliness may gain you forgiveness in spite of your heretical
perversity. I cannot permit you to give him unconsecrated milk,
and as we wish to treat you kindly, the holy Father Certificatus
has allowed me to make an arrangement with you, to which you can
have no objection--I mean, that you should let me make the sign
of the cross upon your breasts morning and evening before you
suckle your infant. You will permit me to do that, won't you?"

Conceive of Mrs. Ginx's reply, clothed in choice Westminster
English: it asserted her readiness to cut off her right hand, her
feet, to be hanged, drowned, burned, torn to pieces, in fact to
withstand all the torments ascribed by vulgar tradition to Roman
Catholic ingenuity, and to see her baby "a dead corpse" into the
bargain, before she would submit her Protestant bosom to such an

"No, mum!" she said; "I couldn't sleep with that on my breast;"
and cried hysterically.

This lower class heretic WAS "brutally refractory." So thought
the Superioress, and so gave Mrs. Ginx notice to come no more.
She went home rather jubilant--she was a martyr.

II.--The Protestant Detectoral Association.

Ginx's baby was now fed on consecrated pap. But his mother was
not a woman to be silent under her wrongs. From her husband she
hid them, because the subject was forbidden. She poured out her
complaint to Mrs. Spittal and other Protestant matrons. Thus it
came to pass that one day, in Ginx's absence, the good woman was
surprised by a visit from a "gentleman." He was small, sharp,
rapid, dressed in black. He opened his business at once.

"Mrs. Ginx? Ah! I am the agent of the Protestant Detectoral

Mrs. Ginx wiped her best chair and set it for him.

"By great good fortune the secretary received only half an hour
ago intelligence of the shocking instance of Papal aggression of
which you have been the victim."

To hear her case put so grandly was honey to Mrs. Ginx.

"Well now," continued the little man, "we are ready to render you
every assistance to save your child from the claws of the Great
Dragon. I wish to know the exact circumstances--let me
see--(opening a large pocket book) I have this memorandum: the
child was carried off from his mother's bedside in broad daylight
by a nun accompanied by two priests and a large body of Irish: is
that a correct version?"

"Law, no, sir, it warn't quite like that," said Mrs. Ginx.
"We've 'ad so many on 'em that Ginx was for drownin' the

--The little man opened his eyes----

"An' he went and gave it away, sir," said she crying, "to a nun,
sir--ah! ah! ah!-- they won't let me see the darlin' now, sir--
ah! ah! ah! because I won't let Missis Spishyosir mark me with
the cross, sir, an' me with as fine a breast o' milk as ever was
for 'im, sir--ah! ah! ah! "

"Hem!" said the little man, "that's different from what I

He was quite honest, but who does not know how disappointing it
is to find a wrong you wish to redress is not so bad as you had

However, it looked bad enough, and might be made worse. It was
the very case for the Protestant Detectoral Association.

"Would Mr. Ginx not join in an effort to recover his child?"

"No, sir; I should think not: he went an' gave it away."

"I know; but he is a Protestant?"

"I don't think he be much o' anything, sir. I know he hate
priests like pison, but he don't care about these things as I

"Oh! I see." Writes in his memorandum book--husband indifferent.

"But don't you think he would help you to get the child back

"No, sir. I wouldn't speak of it to him for the world. He'd
knock any one down if they was to mention the child to him."

The little man mentally determined not to see Ginx.

"Well; would you like to have your child back?"

"You see, I couldn't bring it 'ere, sir. Ginx won't 'ave it; but
I'd like to see it took away from them nunnerys."

"Ha! very well then. We can perhaps manage it for you. You
would be content to hand it over to some Protestant Home, where
it would be taken care of and you could see it when you liked?"

"O yes, sir," cries Mrs. Ginx, brightening.

"Then we'll have an affidavit and apply for a Habeas Corpus."

It was impossible not to be satisfied with such words as these,
whatever they meant and Mrs. Ginx was cheered, while the little
man went on his way.

III.--The Sacrament of Baptism.

Mother, or "Mrs." Suspiciosa, fed Ginx's Baby with holy pap. It
seemed proper now that he should be christened and formally
received into the Church. No small stir was made by this
ceremony, for which all the resources of the convent were called
into action. The day selected was that sacred to St. Ambrosius.
The chapel was decorated with flowers. Mass was celebrated,
candles flamed upon the altar surrounding a figure of the Infant
Jesus, incense was burning around the baby, sisters and novices
knelt in serried rows of virginity

"like doves
Sunning their milky bosoms on the thatch. "

Mother Suspiciosa carried the infant, clothed in a pure white
robe, with a red cross embroidered on its front. In the absence
of the natural parent a wax figure of St. Ambrosius did duty for
him, and another wax figure stood godfather: but I dare not enter
into details of matters that may be looked at as awfully profane,
or awfully solemn, by different spectators. These things are a

I have no hesitation about describing the impious behavior of
little Ginx. Whatever swaddled infant could do in the way of
opposition, with hands, and legs, and voice, was done by that
embryo saint. The incense made him cough and sputter; the
lights and singing raised the very devil within him. His cries
drowned the prayers. He frightened his conductress by the
redness of his face. He ruined the red cross with ejected
matter. You would have taken him for an infant demoniac. Mother
Suspiciosa, though annoyed, was encouraged. She looked upon this
as an evident testimony to little Ginx's value. The devil and
St. Michael were contending for his body. At length he was
baptized, and carried out. Credat Judaeus. He instantly sank
into a deep sleep. It was a miracle: Satan had yielded to the
sign of the cross!

IV.--Law on Behalf of Gospel.

In the moment of Sister Suspiciosa's triumph, the enemy was
laying his train against her. The little man made his report to
the secretary of the Protestant Detectoral Association. This
gentleman was well-born and well-bred; moved to work in this
"cause" by an honest hatred of superstition, priestcraft, and
lies; now giving all his energies to the ambitious design of
pulling down the strongholds of Satan. In any other matter he
could act coolly, and with deliberation; in this he was an
enthusiast. He had a keen Roman nose. He could scent a priest
anywhere in the United Kingdom. He could smell Jesuitry in the
Queen's drawing-room, a cabinet council or convocation, though he
had never been at either. His eye was beyond a falcon's; he saw
things that were invisible. It penetrated through all disguises.
He knew a secret emissary of the Pope by the cock of his hat, or
the color of his stockings. At least, he thought so, and
thousands of persons acted on his estimate of himself.

"This case," said he to the little man, when he had concluded his
report, "though not in its first incidents so grave as we were
led to expect, is, in another point of view, very serious. Here
is a man, as you have expressed it, 'indifferent' to his child's
life-- animal and spiritual. The mother, with a true Protestant
heart, and a fine breast of milk, is longing to nurture her
child, and to deliver it from the toils of the Papacy. But the
husband, what's his name? . . . . Ginx-- Ginx? a very bad name
for a case, by the way--GINX'S CASE!--this Ginx has given up his
child to the Sisters of Misery. How are we to get it away again,
without his cooperation? . . . . Well, we must try."

The solicitor of the Association was forthwith summoned. When
the matter had been laid before him, he expressed doubts, offered
and withdrew courses of action, and ended by suggesting that he
should take the opinion of counsel.

"Mr. Stigma, I suppose?" said he to the secretary.

"Oh, yes, Sir Adolphus Stigma is one of our principal supporters,
and his son's heart is thoroughly with us."

Messrs. Roundhead, Roundhead and Lollard, drew up a case to be
submitted to Mr. Stigma. I will only transcribe the latter

Mr. Ginx being indifferent, and Mrs. Ginx being ready to assist
in regaining the custody of her child, to be conveyed to a
Protestant Home,


"1. Whether a summons should be taken out before a magistrate
against the Lady Superior of the convent, for enticing away or
detaining the infant, under the 56th sect. of 24 and 25 Vict., c.
100 Or,

"2. Whether the proper remedy is by a writ of Habeas Corpus?
and, if so, whether it is necessary that the father should be
joined in the proceedings or his leave obtained to prosecute
them? Or, failing these,

3. Whether counsel is of opinion that this is a case within
Talfourd's Act, and an application might not be made to the Lord
Chancellor, or the Master of the Rolls, on the mother's behalf
for the custody of her child? And,

"4. To advise generally on behalf of the infant."

Mr. Adolphus Stigma took ten days to consider. Meanwhile, the
infant Ambrosius continued to thrive on conventual pap. Then Mr.
Stigma wrote his opinion. It was a model for a barrister. You
took the advice at your own peril--not his. Therefore I
transcribe it.


'I have given to this case my most careful attention; and it is
one of great difficulty. Having regard to the questions put to
me, I think--

"1. Section 56 of the Act of 24 and 25 Vict., c. 100, appears at
first sight to be directed against the stealing and abduction of
children for marriage, or other improper purposes. It provides
that 'Whosoever shall UNLAWFULLY, either by force or fraud, lead
or take away, or decoy, or entice away, or detain any child, &c.,
with intent to deprive ANY parent, &c., of the possession of such
child'--shall be guilty of felony. It is perfectly clear, that
in the case before me, the infant was not, 'by force or fraud,
led or taken away, or decoyed, or enticed away.' The statute,
however, uses the word 'detain;' and this, it appears to me, has
much the same force and intention as the previous words. It is
to be noted, however, that it is separated from them by the
disjunctive 'or;' and, therefore, it might be argued with some
plausibility that any act of forceful or fraudulent detention,
after notice, by persons who have originally acquired a child's
custody in a lawful way, came within the section. The point is
new, and of great importance; and if the Protestant Detectoral
Association feel disposed to try it, they would do so under
favorable circumstances in the present case. Should they decide
to do so, a written demand should be served upon the authorities
of the convent, by the mother, or some one acting on her behalf,
to give up the infant.

"2. The second question is also involved in difficulty. Were the
father to be joined in the proceedings, the writ of Habeas Corpus
would be the correct remedy. But his probable refusal
necessitates the inquiry whether the mother can alone apply for
the writ. The general rule of law is, that the father is
entitled to the custody and disposition of his children. In
Cartlidge and Cartlidge, 31, L. J., P. M. & D. 85, it was held
that this rule would not be generally departed from by the
Divorce Court; but in Barnes v. Barnes, L. R. I, P. & D. 463, the
court made an order, giving the custody of two infant children to
the mother, respondent in a suit for a dissolution of marriage,
on the ground that the mother's health was suffering from being
deprived of their society, and that they were living with a
stranger, and not with the father. These cases were, however, in
the Divorce Court, and do not apply. But, as there seems to be
much ground in the peculiar circumstances here, for arguing that
the mother should have the custody of the child, or, at least,
that it should not be left to that of persons of a different
religion from both parents, an application might be made to the
Queen's Bench to try the question.

"3. Should the common law remedies fail, resort may perhaps be
had to the powers in Chancery under Talfourd's Act, but on this
point I should like to confer with an equity counsel before
giving a decided opinion. It has been decided under this Act
that the court has power to give the custody of children under
seven to the mother. (Shillito v. Collett, 8, W. R. 683-696.) As
this infant is but six weeks old it comes within that case.

"4. I have no general advice to give on behalf of the infant.
"9, Plumtree Court."

If none of the courses suggested by Mr. Stigma was very decided,
Messrs. Roundhead, Roundhead and Lollard were not sorry to have
three strings to their bow. The Detectoral Association
were good clients; most of their funds went into their lawyers'
pockets. It was part of their policy to be litigious. Thereby
the world was kept alive to the existence of Papacy within its
bosom. Who shall say the Association were wrong? Some healthy
daylight was occasionally let in upon the mysteries of Jesuitism,
and there are people who think that worth while at the risk of a
chance injustice. Though the Devil should not get his due, few
would give him any sympathy.

The solicitor at once instructed Mr. Dignam Bailey, Q.C., to
apply with Mr. Stigma to a magistrate for a summons. Mr. Bailey,
Q.C., was not chosen for his partialities. In religious matters
he was a perfect Gallio; but he was like St. Paul in one
particular, he could be all things to all men.

V.--Magistrate's Law.

The personnel of the magistrate to whom Mr. Dignam Bailey, Q. C.,
(with him Mr. Adolphus Stigma), applied in the case of re an
infant, exparte Ginx, is not material to this history. He was
like his fellow stipendiaries --mild as to humor, vigilant in his
duties, opinionated in his views, resenting the troublesome
intrusion into his court of a barrister, apt to treat him with
about one-eighth of the courtesy extended to the humblest junior
by the Queen's Bench, and curiously unequal both with himself and
his brother magistrates in adjusting punishment. It will be most
convenient to insert the report of the Daily Electric Meteor:--

"Mr. Dignam Bailey, Q.C., (with whom was Mr. Adolphus Stigma),
applied for a summons against Mary Dens, commonly called Sister
Suspiciosa, of the convent of the Sisters of Misery, in Winkle
Street, for abducting and detaining a male child of John Ginx and
Mary his wife.

"Mr. D'ACERBITY. On whose behalf do you apply?

"The learned counsel stated that he was instructed by the
Protestant Detectoral Association to apply on behalf of the
mother. The case was also watched by the solicitors of the
Society for Preventing the Suppression of Women and Children.

"Mr. D'ACERBITY. Does the father join in the application?

"Mr. BAILEY. No, sir.

"Mr. D'ACERBITY. Why? He ought to be joined if living.

"Mr. BAILEY. Perhaps you will allow me, sir, to state the case.
The circumstances are peculiar. The fact is----

"Mr. D'ACERBITY. I cannot understand why the father should not
be represented if the child has been abducted. Where was it
taken from?

"Mr. Bailey proceeded to state that the child had been taken by a
nun from No. 5, Rosemary Street, without the mother's consent,
and was now imprisoned in the convent. The father appeared to be
indifferent, or to have given a sort of general acquiescence.
This was Mrs. Ginx's thirteenth child, around whom gathered the
concentrated affections

"Mr. D'ACERBITY (interrupting the learned gentleman). We have
no time for sentiment here, Mr. Bailey. If the father consented,
can you call it abduction? It looks like reduction. (Laughter.)

"Mr. Bailey called attention to the consolidated statutes of
criminal law, and said he was going for illegal detention rather
than abduction, and argued at great length from section 56. At
the conclusion of the argument, after refusing to hear Mr.

"Mr. D'Acerbity said that the case clearly did not come within
the section, and he was afraid the learned counsel knew it. The
father had been a consenting party, on the counsel's own
statement, to the child's removal, and no suggestion had been
made that he had withdrawn his consent. He should refuse a

"Mr. Bailey endeavored to address the magistrate but was stopped.

"Mr. D'ACERBITY. I have no more to say. You can apply to the
Queen's Bench. I have no sympathy with you whatever."

Mr. D'Acerbity's law was good, but--what has justice to do with
"sympathies?" Surely the day after this report appeared the
magistrate must have had a letter from the Home Secretary?

VI-Popery and Protestantism in the Queen's Bench.

The application to the magistrate was far from satisfactory.
There had not even been an exposure, and the Windmill Bulletin
gayly bantered the Detectoral Association. Meanwhile had
happened the grand christening, of which a circumstantial account
was in the hands of the council of the Detectoral Association
shortly after the ceremony had been performed. Here was a
monstrous indignity to a Protestant child! The account was at
once printed, together with a verbatim report of the application
to the magistrate as well as one of "a conversation held with the
mother by an agent of the Association." Board-men paraded the
great thoroughfares carrying this appeal:--

Abduction Of an Infant!
Assault on the Liberty of the Subject!
Mysterious and Awful Proceedings!
Baptism of a Protestant Child in a Convent!

Upon the Nation by Foreign Mercenaries!
Every Father and Mother is Invited to Co-operate in
Maintaining the
The Sanctity of Home, and the Inviolability of

If there was no coherency in this production, it should be noted
how little that is of the essence of popular appeal. The
metropolis was in an uproar. Meetings were held, subscriptions
poured in, dangerous crowds collected in Winkle Street. When Mr.
Dignam Bailey, Q. C., went down to Westminster, to move the Court
of Queen's Bench, multitudes besieged it. Protestant champions
and Papal ecclesiastics vied in their efforts to get seats. The
writ had gone from judge's chambers returnable to the full court.
Sister Suspiciosa, bearing the infant Ambrosius, and supported by
two novices and Father Certificatus, had been smuggled into court
through mysterious passages in its rear. Mrs. Ginx also, brought
from Rosemary Street by the little man who provided her with a
bonnet trimmed with orange-colored ribbons, sat staring with red
eyes at her child, now enveloped in a robe that was embroidered
with little crosses.

Why need I tell you, how dead silence fell upon the Court after
the stir caused by the entrance of the judges; how everybody knew
what was coming when a master beneath the bench rose, and called
out, "Re Ginx, an infant, Exparte Mary Ginx!" How the Chief
Justice, fresh and rosy-looking, then blew his nose in a delicate
mauve-colored silk handkerchief: how he tried and discarded
half-a-dozen pens, amid breathless silence; how in his blandest
manner he said: "Who appears for the Respondent?" and Mr. Dignam
Bailey, Q. C., and Mr. Octavius Ernestus, Q. C., rose together to
say that Mr. Ernestus did!

Mr. Ernestus was a Catholic. He was assisted by half-a-dozen
counsel. He riddled the affidavits on the other side, and read
voluminous ones on his own; bitterly animadverted upon the
absence of an affidavit by the father; held up to the scorn of a
civilized world the course pursued towards his meek and gentle
clients by the "fanatical zealots of the Protestant Detectoral
Association;" in moving tones referred to the shrinking of "quiet
recluses, from the gaze of a rude, unsympathizing world;" cited
cases from the time of Magna Charta, down; called upon the Court
to vindicate Protestant justice, ending his peroration with the
aphorism of Lord Mansfield, Fiat justitia ruat caelum.

One cannot do Justice to Mr. Dignam Bailey's argument, when after
lunch he rose to reply. He was logical and passionate,
vindictive and pathetic by turns. He inveighed against the Lady
Superior, against her attorneys, against Father Certificatus,
against Ginx,--"craven to his heaven-born rights of political and
religious freedom,"-- against the Roman Catholic religion, the
Pope, the Archbishop of Westminster, the Virgin Mary. The Court
knew, and every one else knew, that this was pure pyrotechny, and
Mr. Bailey knew that best of all; but, though the Bench is swift
to speak, slow to hear, it felt obliged, in a case of this public
interest, to sit by, and be witnesses of the exhibition. Mr.
Bailey concluded by a play on the aphorism cited by his learned
friend. "He would say that if such justice were to be done, as
his friend had urged, the Kingdom of Heaven in England would rush
to its fall."

The Court at once decided that, as the father had confided the
custody of the infant to the Sisters of Misery, and did not
appear to desire that it should be withdrawn, they, disregarding
the religious clouds in which the subject had been too carefully
involved on both sides, gave judgment for the defendant, with

As they passed out of Court, Mr. Stigma said to his clients,
"Quite as I anticipated; you remember I told you so in my

VII.--A Protestor, but not a Protestant.

The infant Ambrosius and his conductors could scarcely reach the
convent in safety. The building showed few windows to the
street, but they were all broken. What might have happened in a
few days, but that Ginx's Baby took the matter into his own
hands, none can say.

The treatment to which the little saint was subjected soured his
temper. His kind nurses had choked him twice a day with incense,
and now he had inhaled for seven hours the air of the Queen's
Bench. On his return to the convent he was hastily fed, and
carried to the chapel to give thanks for the victory of the day.
Wrapped in a handsome chasuble, they laid him on the steps of the
altar. In the most solemn part of the service he coughed, and
grew sick. The chasuble was bespattered. When the officiating
priest, to save that garment, took the child in his arms, he
nefariously polluted the sacerdotal vestments and the altar
steps. Then he kicked toward the altar itself, roared lustily,
and finally went into convulsions in Sister Suspiciosa's arms.
Like most women, the Lady Superior required her enthusiasm to be
fed with success. She began to think that she had been cozened:
Ginx's Baby was too evidently a spiritual miscarriage. He must,
like the rest of his family, be, indeed, "Protestant to the
backbone." Father Certificatus agreed with her. His robes and
best chasuble were befouled.

"Let us not risk a repetition of this conduct," said he; "let the
child be given up. He is baptized, and cannot be severed from
the Church. He will return after many days."

Next morning the solicitors of the Protestant Detectoral
Association received a letter from their opponents. In this they
said that--presuming Messrs. Roundhead, Roundhead, and Lollard,
intended to apply to the Master of the Rolls, the authorities of
the convent had decided, after having vindicated themselves in
the Queen's Bench, to give up the child, which would be, for
twenty-four hours, at the order and disposal of the Association,
and afterwards of his parents. "We are instructed by our
clients," they added, "to ask you to bear in mind that the child
has been admitted, and is a member of the Catholic Church, owing
allegiance to the Holy Father at Rome, a bond from which only the
Papal excommunication can absolve him."

VIII.--"See how these Christians love one another."

A mass-meeting of Protestants had been summoned for three o'clock
on the day designated in the letter of the Papist attorneys, to
be held in the Philopragmon Hall. That was the favorite centre
of countless movements, both well-meant and well-executed, and of
others as futile as they were foolish. Yet one could not say
that a larger proportion of the latter were connected with the
Hall than existed in as many other human enterprises of any sort.
The concession of the Romanists at first dashed the managers of
the demonstration. Their grievance was gone. Still there
remained topics for a meeting: they would rejoice over victory,
and consult about the future of the Protestant Baby.

The Secretary was an old hand at these meetings. He planned to
import into this one a sensation. Ginx's Baby, brought from the
convent, stripped of his papal swathings and enveloped in a
handsome outfit presented by an amiable Protestant Duchess, was
placed in a cradle with his head resting on a Bible. I am afraid
he was quite as uncomfortable as he had ever been at the
convent. When, at the conclusion of the chairman's speech, in
which he informed the audience of their triumph, this exhibition
was deftly introduced upon the platform, the huzzas, and
clappings, and waving of handkerchiefs were such as even that
place had never seen. The child was astounded into quietness.

Mr. Trumpeter took the chair--believed by many to be, next to the
Queen, the most powerful defender of the faith in the three
kingdoms. I never could understand why the newspapers reported
his speeches--I cannot.

When he had done, Lord Evergood, "a popular, practical peer, of
sound Protestant principles," as the Daily Banner alliteratively
termed him next morning, rose to move the first resolution,
already cut and dried by the committee--

"That the infant so happily rescued from the incubus of a
delusive superstition, should be remitted to the care of the
Church Widows' and Orphans' Augmentation Society, and should be
supported by voluntary contributions."

Before Lord Evergood could say a word murmurs arose in every part
of the hall. He was a mild, gentlemanly Christian, without
guile, and the opposition both surprised and frightened him. He
uttered a few sentences in approval of his proposition and sat

An individual in the gallery shouted-- "Sir! I rise to move an

Cheers, and cries of "Order! order! Sit down!" &c.

The Chairman, with great blandness, said: "The gentleman is out
of order; the resolution has not yet been seconded. I call upon
the Rev. Mr. Valpy to second the resolution."

Mr. Valpy, incumbent of St. Swithin's-within, insisted on
speaking, but what he said was known only to himself. When he
had finished there was an extraordinary commotion. On the
platform many ministers and laymen jumped to their feet; in the
hall at least a hundred aspirants for a hearing raised themselves
on benches or the convenient backs of friends.

The Chairman shouted, "Order! ORDER, gentlemen! This is a great
occasion; let us show unanimity!"

There seemed to be an unanimous desire to speak. Amid cheers,
cries for order, and Kentish fire, you could hear the Rev. Mark
Slowboy, Independent, the Rev. Hugh Quickly, Wesleyan, the Rev.
Bereciah Calvin, Presbyterian, the Rev. Ezekiel Cutwater,
Baptist, calling to the chair.

A lull ensued, of which advantage was taken by Mr. Stentor, a
well-known Hyde Park orator, who bellowed from a friend's
shoulders in the pit, "Mr. Chairman, hear ME!" an appeal that was
followed by roars of laughter.

What was the matter? Why the proposal to hand over the baby to
an Anglican refuge stirred up the blood of every Dissenter
present. It was lifting the infant out of the frying-pan and
dexterously dropping him into the fire. But the chairman was
accustomed to these scenes. He stayed the tumult by proposing
that a representative from each denomination should give his
opinion to the audience. "Whom would they have first? "

The loudest cries were for Mr. Cutwater, who stood forth--a weak,
stooping, half-halting, little man, with a limp necktie, and
trousers puffy at the knees--but with honest use of them, let me
say. It is quite credible that if Dr. Watts's assertion be true

"Satan trembles when he sees
The weakest saint upon his knees,"

that arch-enemy was unusually perturbed when Ezekiel Cutwater was
upon his. On these he had borne manly contests with evil. Two
things--yea, three--were rigid in Ezekiel's creed; fire would
never have burned them out of him: hatred of Popery, contempt of
Anglican priestcraft and apostolic succession, and adhesion to
the dogma of adult baptism and total immersion. Whoso should not
join with him in these let him be Anathema Maranatha.

His eye kindled as he looked at the seething audience. "Sir,"
said he, "I beg to move an amendment to the motion of the noble
lord. (Cheers.) That motion proposes to transfer to the care of
the Established Church this tender and unconscious infant
(bending over Ginx's baby), just snatched from the toils of a
kindred superstition. (Oh, oh, hisses and cheers.) I withdraw
the expression; I did not mean to be offensive. (Hear.) This is
a grand representative meeting--not of the English Church, not of
the Baptist Church, not of the Wesleyan Church--but of
Protestantism. (Cheers and Kentish fire.) In such an assembly
is it right to propose any singular disposition of a
representative infant? This is now the adopted child, not of
one, but of all denominations. (Cheers.) Around his, or her--I
am not sure which --cherubic head circle the white-winged angels
of various Churches, and on her or him, whichever it may be----"

The Chairman said that he might as well say that he had authentic
information that it was HIM.

"Him then--concentrate the sympathies of every Protestant heart.
Let us not despoil the occasion of its greatness by exhibiting a
narrow bigotry in one direction! Let us bring into this
infantile focus the rays of Catholic unity. (Loud cheering and
Kentish fire.) To me, for one, it would be eminently painful to
think--what doubtless would occur if the motion is adopted--that
within a week of his entrance into the asylum of the society
named in it, this diminutive and unknowing sinner should go
through the farce of a supposititious admission into the Church
of Christ. (Oh!) Yes! I say a farce, whether you regard the
age of the acolyte or the indifferent proportion of water with
which it would be performed. (Uproar, oh, oh! and some cheering
from the Baptist section.) But I will not now further enter into
these things," said Mr. Cutwater, who knew his cue perfectly
well, "I can hold these opinions and still love my brethren of
other denominations. I move, as an amendment, that a committee,
consisting of one minister and one layman to be selected from
each of the Churches, be appointed to take charge of the physical
well-being and mental and spiritual training of the infant."

By this proposition, which was received with enthusiasm, Ginx's
Baby was to be incontinently pitched into an arena of polemical
warfare. Every one was willing that a committee should fight out
the question vicariously; and, therefore, when Mr. Slowboy
seconded the amendment, it was carried with loud acclamations.

But they were not yet out of the wood. On proceeding to nominate
members of the committee, the Unitarians and Quakers claimed to
be represented. The platform and the meeting were by the ears
again. It was fiercely contended that only Evangelical
Christians could have a place in such a work, and many of the
nominees declared that they would not sit on a committee
with--well, some curious epithets were used. The Unitarians and
Quakers took their stand on the Catholic principles embodied in
the amendment, and on the fact that Ginx's Baby had now "become
national Protestant property." Mr. Cutwater and a few others,
moved by the scandal of the dispute, interfered, and the
committee was at length constituted to the satisfaction of all
parties. It was to be called "The Branch Committee of the
Protestant Detectoral Union for promoting the Physical and
Spiritual Well-being of Ginx's Baby. "

A fourth resolution was adopted, "That the subject should be
treated in the Metropolitan pulpits on the next Sabbath, and a
collection taken up in the various churches for the benefit of
the infant." This promised well for Master Ginx's future.

The meeting had lasted five hours, and while they were discussing
him the child grew hungry. In the tumult every one had forgotten
the subject of it, and now it was over, they dispersed without
thought of him. But he would not allow those near him at all
events to overlook his presence.

Some, foreseeing that awkwardness was impending, slipped away;
while three or four stayed to ask what was to be done with him.

"Hand him over to the custody of the Chairman," said a Mr. Dove.

"I should be most happy," said he, smoothly, "but Mrs. Trumpeter
is out of town. Could your dear wife take him, Mr. Dove?"

Mr. Dove's wife was otherwise engaged.

The Secretary was unmarried--chambers at Nincome's Inn.

In the midst of their distress a woman who had been hanging about
the hall near the platform, came forward and offered to take
charge of him, "for the sake of the cause." Every one was
relieved. After her name and address had been hastily noted, the
Protestant baby was placed in her arms. My Lord Evergood, the
Chairman, the clergy, the Secretary, and the mob went home
rejoicing. Some hours after, Ginx's Baby, stripped of the
duchess's beautiful robes, was found by a policeman, lying on a
doorstep in one of the narrow streets, not a hundred yards behind
the Philopragmon. By an ironical chance he was wrapped in a copy
of the largest daily paper in the world.

IX.--Good Samaritans, and Good-Samaritan Twopences.

At every breakfast-table in town next morning the report of the
great Protestant meeting was read, and a further report, in
leaded type, of the discovery of Ginx's Baby at a later period of
the evening by a policeman. A pretty comment on the proceedings!
The Good Samaritan put his patient on his ass and carried him to
an inn; while the priest and the Levite, though the latter looked
at him, at least let him alone. To have called a public meeting
to discuss his fate before deserting him, would have been a
refinement of inhumanity. The committee were rather ashamed when
they met. Instant measures were taken to recover the child and
place him in good hands. The duchess again provided
baby-clothes. The next Sunday sermons were preached on his
behalf in a score of chapels. The collections amounted to L 800,
a sum increased by donations and subscriptions to the handsome
total of L 1360 10s. 3 1/2d.

It will be seen hereafter what the committee did with the baby,
but I happen to have an account of what became of the funds.
They were spent as follows, according to a balance sheet never
submitted to the subscribers:--

Pounds s. d.
Committee-rooms . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 0 0
2 Secretaries employed by the
Committee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120 0 0
Agents, canvassing, &c . . . . . . . . . . 88 6 2
Printing Notices, Placards,
Pamphlets, a "Daily Bulletin of
Health," "Life of Ginx's Baby,"
"Protestant Babyhood, a Tale,"
"The Cradle of an Infant Martyr,"
"A Snatched Brand," and other
Works issued by the Committee . . . . . . 596 13 5
Advertisements of Meetings,
Sermons, &c . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 261 1 1
Legal Expenses . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . 77 6 8
Stationery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 10 0
Postage, Firing, and Sundries . . . . . . . 27 19 2
Total Pounds 1251 16 6

This left L 108 13s. 9 1/2d. for the baby's keep. No child could
have been more thoroughly discussed, preached and written about,
advertised, or advised by counsel; but his resources dwindled in
proportion to these advantages. Benevolent subscribers too
seldom examine the financial items of a report: had any who
contributed to this fund seen the balance sheet they might have
grudged that so little of their bounty went to make flesh, bone,
and comfort for the object of it. A cynic would tell them that
to look sharply after the disposal of their guerdon was half the
gift. Their indifference was akin to that satirized by the

"Prodigus et stultus dedit quae spernit et odit."

In an age of luxury we are grown so luxurious as to be content to
pay agents to do our good deeds for us; but they charge us three
hundred per cent. for the privilege.

X.--The Force--and a Specimen of its Weakness.

Ginx's baby had been discovered by a policeman swaddled in a
penny paper, distressingly familiar to metropolitan travellers by
rail. To omit the details of his treatment at the hands of that
great institution, "The Force," would be invidious. The member
thereof who fell in with him was walking a back street, sighting
doors with his bull's-eye. He was provided with massive boots,
so that a thief could hear him coming a hundred yards off; he was
personally tall and unwieldy, and a dexterous commissioner had
invented a dress designed to enhance these qualities--a heavy
coat, a cart-horse belt, and a round cape. He had been carefully
drilled not to walk more than three miles an hour. He was not a
little startled when the rays of his lamp fell upon a struggling
newspaper, out of which, as from a shell, came mysterious cries.
He took up a corner of the paper and peeped in upon the face of
Ginx's Baby; then he occupied a quarter of an hour in
embarrassing reflections. A nearly naked child crying in the
cold ought to be housed as soon as possible, but X 99 was ON HIS
BEAT, and those magic words chained him to certain limits. This,
of course, was the rule under a former commissioner, and every
one knows that such absurd strategy has been abolished in the
existing regime. At that time, however, each watchman had his
beat, to leave which was neglect of duty, except with a prisoner,
and then it was neglect of all the householders within the magic
compass. Had X 99 heard the baby crying across the street, which
was part of the beat of X 101, he would have passed on with a
cheery heart, for the case would have been beyond his
jurisdiction. Unhappily the baby was on his beat, and he was
delivered from the temptation of transferring it to the other by
the appearance of X 101's bull's-eye not far off. What was he to
do? The station was a mile away--the inspector would not arrive
for an hour--and it would be awkward, if not undignified, to
carry on his rounds a shouting baby wrapped in the largest daily
paper. If he left it where it was, and it perished, he might be
charged with murder. He was at his wits' end--but having got
there, he resolved on the simplest process, namely to carry it to
the station. No provision was made by the regulations of the
force to protect a beat casually deserted even for a proper
purpose. Hence, while X 99 was absent on his errand of mercy,
the valuable shop of Messrs. Trinkett and Blouse, ecclesiastical
tailors, was broken into, and several stoles, chasubles,
altar-cloths and other decorative tapestries were appropriated to
profane uses.

At the station the baby was disposed of according to rule. Due
entry was first made in the night-book by the superintendent of
all the particulars of his discovery. Some cold milk was then
procured and poured down the child's throat. Afterwards, wrapped
in a constable's cape, he was placed in a cell where, when the
door was locked, he could not disturb the guardians of the peace.

The same night, in the next cell, an innocent gentleman, seized
with an apoplexy in the street but entered in the charge-sheet as
drunk and incapable, died like a dog.

XI.--The Unity of the Spirit and the Bond of Peace.

When the committee met, every one discovered his incongruity with
the rest. Each was disposed to treat Ginx's Baby in a different
way--in other words, each wished to reflect the views of his
particular sect on the object of their charity. They were a new
"Evangelical Alliance," agreed only in hatred to Popery.

Finding at their first meeting that the discussion needed to be
brought into a focus, the committee appointed three of their
number to draw up a minute of the matters to be argued. This
committee reported that there arose, respecting the child, the
following questions:--

"I. As touching the body:

a. Wherewithal he should be fed and clothed?

b. In what manner and fashion that should be done?

II. As touching the mind and spirit:

a. Whether he should be educated? If so,

b. What were to be the subjects of instruction?

c. What creed, if any, should be primarily taught?

d. Should he be further baptized? If so,

1. Into what communion?

2. By what ceremonial?"

This programme, it appeared to its concoctors, embraced
everything that concerned Ginx's Baby except his death by the act
of God or the Queen's enemies. No sooner was the report made
than adopted. Then a member, eager for the fray, moved the
postponement of the first division of questions until the others
had been determined. Why should apostles of truth trouble
themselves to serve tables? These were very subordinate
questions to them--though, I think, of first importance to Ginx's
Baby. It was decided to discuss little Ginx's future before
considering his present.

The ball was opened by the Venerable Archdeacon Hotten, who, amid
much excitement, contended that from the earliest buddings of
thought in an infant mind religion should be engrafted upon it;
there could be no education worth the name that was not
religious. That with the A should be taught the origin, and with
the Z the final destiny and destruction, of evil. To separate
education from religion was to clip the wings of the heavenly
dove. He asserted that the committee ought at once to have the
child baptized in Westminster Abbey, though he was rather of
opinion that the previous baptism was canonically valid; that he
should be taught the truths of our most holy faith, and since
there could be no faith without a creed, and the only national
creed was that of the Church of England, the baby should be
handed over to the care of a clergyman, and then be sent to a
proper religious school. He need not say that he excluded Rugby
under its then profane management.

The Church was, however, divided against itself, for the Dean of
Triston said he would give more latitude than his very reverend
brother. You ought not to define in an infant mind a rigid
outline of creed. In fact, he did not acknowledge any creed, he
was not obliged to by law and was disinclined to by his reason.
He would rather allow the inner seeds of natural light--the
glorious all-pervading efflorescence of the Deity in all men's
hearts, to grow within the young spirit. The Dean was assuredly
vague and far less earnest than his brother cleric.

The "Rev." Mr. Bumpus, Unitarian, met the suggestions of the
Archdeacon with the scorn they merited. It was impossible to
apply to a representative child of an enlightened age theories so
long exploded. The Dean had certainly come nearer the truth with
that broad sympathy for which he was noted. He himself proposed
that the child should be made a model nursling of the liberalism
of a new era. Old things were passing away;--all things had
become new. Creeds were the discarded banners of a mediaeval
past, fit only to be hung up in the churches, and looked at as
historic monuments; never more to be flaunted in the front of
battle! The education of the day was that which taught a man the
introspection whereby he recognized the Divine within
himself--under any aspect, under any tuition, whether of Brahma,
Confucius, or Christ. Truth was kaleidoscopic, and varied with
the media through which it was viewed. As for the child, every
aspect of truth and error should be allowed to play upon his
mind. Let him acquire ordinary school learning for fifteen
years, and then send him to the London University.

Here the Chairman, and half-a-dozen members of the committee,
protested that the said University was a school of the devil, and
several interchanges of discourtesy took place.

Mr. Shortt, M. P., begged to suggest, as a matter of business,
that for the present the child was not capable of receiving any
ideas whatever, and might die, or prove to be dumb, or an idiot,
and so require no education. Ought they not to postpone this
discussion until the subject was old enough to be worth

It was Mr. Shortt's habit to show his practical vein by
business-like obstructions of this kind. He had been able a
score of times to demonstrate to the House of Commons how silly
it was to consider probabilities. In fact, he was opposed heart
and soul to prophetic legislation; he would live, legislatively,
from hand to mouth.

But the committee would not allow Mr. Shortt to run away with the
bone of contention.

The Rev. Dr. M'Gregor Lucas, of the National Caledonian
Believers, had been silent too long to contain himself further.
This man needs some particular description whenever his name is
made public. Nay, for this he lives, and by it, some think. At
all events, he appears to be equally eager for rebuke and
applause; they both involve notoriety, and notoriety is sure to
pay. Few absurdities had been overlooked by his shallow
ingenuity. Simply to have invested his limited mental endowments
in trying to make the world believe him a genius, would have been
only so like what many thousands are doing as to have absolved
him from too harsh a judgment; but he traded in perilous stuff.
Cheap prophecy was his staple. It was his wont to give out about
once in five years, that the world would shortly come to an end,
and, like Mr. Zadkiel, he found people who thought their
inevitable disappointment a proof of his inspiration. Had you
heard the honeyed words dropping from his lips, you would have
taken him for a Scotch angel, and, consequently, a rarity. Could
such lips utter harsh sayings, or distil vanities? Show him a
priest, and you would hear! The Pope was his particular born
foe; Popery his enemies' country--so he said. It was safe for
him to stand and throw his darts. No one could say whether they
hit or did not; while most spectators had the good will to hope
that they did. How he would have lived if Daniel and St. John
had dreamed no dreams, one cannot conjecture. As it was, they
provided the doctor with endless openings for his fancy. Since
no one could solve the riddle of their prophecies, it was certain
that no one could disprove his solutions. Yet these came so
often to their own disproof by lapse of time, that I can only
think that the good doctor hoped to die before his critical
periods came, or was so clever as to trust the infallibility of
human weakness.

I describe Dr. Lucas at so great a length, because it will be
easier and more edifying to the reader to conceive what he said,
than for me to recount it. He showed the Baby to be one of seven
mysteries. He was in favor of teaching him at once to hate
idolatry, music, crosses, masses, nuns, priests, bishops, and
cardinals. The "humanities," the Shorter Catechism, the
Confession of Faith, and "The whole Duty of Man," would, in his
opinion, be the books to lay the groundwork in the child's mind
of a Christian character of the highest type.

Mr. Ogle, M. P., here vigorously intervened. Said he:--

"I can't, with all deference, agree to any of these suggestions.
They involve hand-to-hand fighting over this baby's body. No one
of us is entitled to take charge of him. Else why did we all
unite to rescue him from the nunnery? He will be torn to pieces
among contending divines! I think a purely secular education is
all that as a committee we should aim at. We have, but just
withdrawn the child from the shadow of a single ecclesiastical
influence--would you transfer it to another? Every Protestant
denomination is contributing to his support, how can you devote
their gifts to rearing him for one? You would have no peace;
better at once treat him as the man of Benjamin treated his wife,
cut him up into enough pieces to send to all the tribes of
Israel, summoning them to the fight. I say we have nothing to do
with this just now; let him be educated in a secular academy, and
let each sect be free to send its agents to instruct him out of
school hours as they please."

The Rev. Theodoret Verity, M.A., rose in anger.

"Surely, sir, you cannot seriously propound such a scheme! Would
you leave this precious waif to be buffeted between the
contending waves of truth and error, in the vague hope that by
some lucky wind he might finally be cast upon a rock of safety?
I protest against all these educational heresies--they are
redolent of brimstone. Truth is truth, or there is none at all.
If there be any, it is our duty to impart it to this immortal at
the outset of his existence. Secular education! What do you
mean by it? Who shall sever one question from another, and call
one secular and the other religious? Is not every relation and
every truth in some way or other connected with religion?" &c.
&c. Mr. Verity has been saying the same thing any time these
forty years.

"Forgive me," replied Mr. Ogle, "if I say that this is very vague
talking. I have not proposed to sever one question from another.
I only propose to do in a different way that which is being done
now by the most rigid of Mr. Verity's friends. It is impossible
to comprehend what is meant by such a statement as that every
truth is somehow connected with religion. It may be
that the notion--if it really is not, as I suspect it to be, mere
verbiage and clap-trap, used by certain fools to mislead
others--means that there is some such coherency between all
truths as there is, for instance, between the elements of the
body. I would admit that, but is not blood a different and
perfectly severable thing from bone? Each has its place, office,
relation. But who would say that one could not be regarded by a
physicist in the largest variety of its aspects apart from the
other? Yet the physicist comes back again to consider with
respect to each its relations to all the rest! The separate
study has rather prepared him for more profound insight into
those relations. Thus it is with the body of truth. In spite of
Mr. Verity I affirm that there are truths that have not in
themselves any element of religion whatever. The forty-seventh
proposition of Euclid will be taught by a Jesuit precisely as it
is taught in the London University; geography will affirm certain
principles and designate places, rivers, mountains--that no faith
can remove and cast into unknown seas. These subjects and others
are taught in our most bigoted schools in separate hours and
relations from religion. What then do you mean by affirming that
there can be no secular education of this child--apart from
religious teaching? We are not likely to agree, if I may judge
from what I have seen, on any one method of religious instruction
for it, therefore I wish first to fix common bounds within which
our common benevolence may work. Well, we all go to the Bible.
We agree that between its covers lies religious truth somewhere.
If you like let him have that--and let him have some kindly and
holy influences about him in the way of practice and example,
such as many of our sects can supply many instances of. Give him


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