Memoirs of the Life and Correspondence of Henry Reeve, C.B., D.C.L.
John Knox Laughton
Part 4 out of 8
which I should treat it; but my object was, first, to know whether it was
open, and if you would be disposed, other things harmonising, to entrust it
to me. I will not say, as was my first impulse, that your own intention of
taking up the subject is quite sufficient answer for me; for, of course,
you are the best judge in that respect, and I am really anxious to have
an opportunity of saying my say, with gravity and pains, on a matter so
I entirely agree with you in your opinion of Mr. Mill's theory of marriage
and the relations between men and women. I think it is not only fallacious,
but a strangely superficial way of regarding a question which is made
only the more serious by the fact that a great deal of suffering and much
injustice result, not from arbitrary and removable causes, but from nature
herself, and those fundamental laws which no agitation can abrogate.
My own idea is that woman is neither lesser man, nor the rival of man, but
a creature with her share of work so well defined and so untransferable, as
to make it impossible for her, whatsoever might be her gifts and training,
to compete with him on perfectly fair terms. There may or may not be
general inferiority of intellect--I have no theory on the subject; but
intellect, in my opinion, is not the matter in question. Could the burdens
of maternity be transferred, or could a class of female celibates be
instituted, legislation might be able to do everything for them. But beyond
this, I do not see how we can go, except in the case of such measures as
those you refer to for the protection of the property of married women,
which has already been anticipated by ordinary good sense and prudence, and
thus been proved as practicable as it is evidently needful.
I am disposed to accept gratefully such safeguards of practical justice,
and also every possibility of improved education, though I put no great
faith in the results of the latter; the great difficulty in the case of
every female student being, in my opinion, not the want of power, or
perseverance, or energy, but the simple yet much more inexorable fact that
she is a woman, and liable, the moment she marries, to interruptions
and breaks in her life, which must infallibly weaken all her chances of
success. This is the line I should take in any paper on the subject; and
as few people could speak more fully from experience, I think perhaps my
contribution to the discussion--from within, as it were, and not from
without--might be worth having. Believe me, truly yours,
M. O. W. OLIPHANT.
And, on the lines here indicated, Mrs. Oliphant wrote the article on 'Mill
and the Subjection of Women' in the October number of the 'Review.'
On August 24th, Reeve with his wife started for Scotland; but the grouse
had been nearly exterminated by the disease, the shooting was everywhere
very indifferent, and a month was passed in a number of friendly visits, of
which little trace is left beyond the bare names. On September 21st they
returned to London, where, in preparing for a contemplated journey to
Portugal, he had to arrange for the sittings of the Judicial Committee
immediately after his return. The following shows the kind of difficulty he
had to contend with:--
_From Lord Cairns_
_September 27th_--I am very sorry that I shall be unable to take part in
your sittings after Michaelmas Term. I have arranged to give up November to
that dreadful arbitration of the London, Chatham, and Dover, which, in a
weak moment, Salisbury and I undertook; and, after that, I go to Mentone,
where I have taken a house for the winter.... I should regret very much to
dissever myself from the sittings of the Judicial Committee, which I
have always found agreeable, both from the interesting character of the
business, and from the pleasant composition of the tribunal; and I hope in
next year to be able to afford more service than I have in this; but for
the next sitting I must not be reckoned on. I hope you will enjoy your run
This contemplated tour was, no doubt, mainly for the pleasure and interest
of visiting a country still unknown to him, but with a slight pretext of
business, as chairman of the Lusitanian Mining Company. A few days before
his departure he received the following from Lord Clarendon:--
_The Grove, October 3rd_--You will not find Murray at Lisbon, as he is
on leave; but a letter shall be written, and to Doria, the _chargé
d'affaires_, to render you any service in his power. Do you want one to the
consul at Oporto?
I am glad you approved what I said at Watford. I never dreamt of the speech
making a sensation, but it has; and as there was nothing remarkable in it,
it is a proof that people were looking for an assurance from somebody that
a policy of spoliation was not meditated.
I can't say I got much good from Wiesbaden, where mental torpor, and not a
dozen red boxes per day, is required.
* * * * *
And so, accompanied by his wife and daughter, and armed with these letters
of introduction and 'a Foreign Office bag, more,' wrote Mrs. Reeve, 'to
give us importance, I suspect, than to convey despatches,' Reeve started as
soon as his work was cleared off and the October number of the 'Review' was
fairly out of his hands.
THE FRANCO-GERMAN WAR
For some reason best known to himself, Portugal is not a favourite
hunting-ground of the tourist; and the country--though almost at our door,
though bound to us by alliance in war and friendship in peace for more than
two hundred years, though possessing beautiful scenery and the grandest of
historical associations--remains comparatively unknown. So far as he was
concerned, Reeve had long wished to dispel this darkness, and the fact of
his being Chairman of the Lusitanian Mining Company gave him the desired
opportunity. His Journal of the tour is here, as on former occasions,
elaborated by extracts (in square brackets) from Mrs. Reeve's.
_October 9th_--Started for Portugal on board the 'Douro' from Southampton.
Fine passage. Landed at Lisbon on October 13th. Hôtel Bragança. Kindly
received by Pinto Basto. Excursion to Cintra on the 14th.
_15th_.--Dined with Pinto Basto and met Fonseca. 16th, to Caldas. 17th,
to Alcobaça; then drove on to Batalha, and slept at Leiria. These great
monasteries, now deserted, with their architecture and their tombs, are of
the highest interest.
_18th_.--From Leiria to Pombal, and thence by rail to Coimbra [armed with
letters of introduction from Count Lavradio, including one to the 'Rector
Magnificus,' described as 'homme aimable et fort instruit, surtout dans les
[The buildings of the University are not remarkable either way. The Rector
received us very courteously; showed us himself the splendid view from the
tower, the Salle where degrees are conferred, and allowed us to peep into
a gallery and through a window to see the lecture-rooms; then, making his
bow, sent us with an attendant to the chapel, where we were joined by the
Professor of German, Herr Dürzen, clad in the ample cape or cloak and with
the black jelly-bag cap which is the academic costume. He took us to the
library, a large and striking saloon with carved and gilt pilasters and
galleries.... There are about 900 students, of whom a large proportion
comes from the Brazils. They look very picturesque in their floating
drapery and hanging headgear; but the cape must be always impeding the free
use of arms and legs, and the cap--now that its original use as a begging
purse has ceased--might well be exchanged for a 'sombrero.' Herr Dürzen
accompanied us to the Botanic Gardens, where his friend and countryman,
Götze, showed us a splendid magnolia, Australian pines, and a great variety
of eucalypti.... We then drove to the entrance of the footway leading to
the Penedo da Saudade, a walk much affected by the Coimbrese. Then to the
Quinta da Santa Cruz, the summer residence of the monks. Truly they had
made them lordly pleasure-grounds, orange groves, hedges like tall walls
of arbor-vitae, terraces leading to fountains and cascades, azulejo-lined
benches surrounding marble floors, shaded by grand old laurels.... The
Quinta now belongs to a rich butter factor, who lets everything ornamental
go to wreck and ruin, or just clears it off for farm purposes.... The
butter factor's dogs came out barking and biting as we left the garden.
Henry made a timely retreat; the professor showed fight, and came off
second best, with his mantle torn. Then to the Church of Santa Cruz and to
the monastic buildings attached....]
_20th_.--Coimbra to Mealhada, then to Luso, and walked to Busaco. Convent
of Busaco. Scene of battle. Rail to Estarreja [which we reached at 6 P.M.
A splendid full moon lighted our drive to Palhal. Mr. Cruikshank met us at
the station, and drove Henry in his dog-cart; Hopie and I, with our bags,
went in the _char-à-banc_ which had been procured from Aveiro. The distance
is about eight miles, seven of which are a gentle ascent, and then a steep
pitch down of one mile. Flags were flying in honour of the arrival of
the chairman of the 'Lusitanian Company,' and after dinner a display of
fireworks. Mr. and Mrs. Cruikshank are a pleasing and intelligent young
Scotch couple. Three of their children are at Granja, a little bathing
village two or three stations further, and Mrs. Cruikshank and her eldest
little girl came back to receive us.]
_21st_.--[The mine at Palhal yields copper ore; that of Carvalhal lead ore.
The Pinto Basto family have the concession of the mines, and own much
of the surface. From five to eight hundred persons are employed--all
Portuguese, except the three mining captains, the dresser of the ores, a
carpenter, and a blacksmith. The English colony consists of about thirty
souls; there is a school for the children, and on Sundays they meet for
Divine worship after the manner of Wesleyans. The wages of these Cornishmen
are eight, ten, twelve pounds a month, and there are very tidy houses
on the property, with a large cottage, or house, for the agent--Mr.
Cruikshank. The works are in the ravine below the house, and the Caima
furnishes ample water power.... Many women and girls are employed preparing
the ores, some of them remarkably good-looking.... Their wages are from two
to three shillings a week. The scenery--pine-clad hills, streams on the
hill-side, ravines, and burns--reminded one of Scotland; but oranges and
camellias in the gardens, arbutus, myrtle, laurustinus, cistus, all wild,
tell of a different climate.... We explored Palhal on Thursday, and
Carvalhal on Friday; Henry and Mr. Cruikshank going into details at the
works, whilst we went, with Mrs. Cruikshank, to call on the wives, visit
the school, &c.... On Friday evening we took the train at Estarreja, and so
_25th_.--Adolph Pinto Basto [a nephew of our Lisbon friends] gave us an
entertainment in a boat on the Douro, and a collation at Avintes. Dinner at
the Crystal Palace, Oporto.
_26th_.--Drove to Carvalho with Elles.
_27th_.--Drove to Leça do Balio with Oswald Crawford, the consul.
Interesting Templars' church.
_28th-30th_.--By rail from Oporto to Madrid, thirty-six hours by Badajos,
_31st_.--Madrid. Gallery. Bull-fight for the benefit of 'El Tato.' [We
had seen him at Valencia, nine years ago, in the pride and bloom of his
career--a career cut short not so much by the fury of the bull as by
the ignorance of the surgeon. Presently the chief door of the arena was
unbarred, and an open carriage, with three men in the dress of matadors and
'El Tato' in the 'plain clothes' of a peasant drove round. Great was the
sensation. The men shouted, the women wept, the old lady at my elbow shed
floods of tears; cigars and hats were flung to him; he bowed, kissed his
hand, wiped his eyes. Then the regular work of the day commenced.] Very
_November 2nd_.--Left Madrid for Avila, passing the Escorial.
_3rd_.--Avila and then on to Burgos.
_4th_.--Burgos. Cathedral. Monuments.
_5th_.--Reached Biarritz at 10 P.M., and so to Paris.
_8th_.--Paris. Saw Désclès in 'Frou-frou.' Great actress.
Home on the 9th. A well-spent month.
_From the Comte de Paris_
York House, le 11 novembre.
Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,--Mon oncle Aumale et moi nous vous remercions des
paquets que vous nous avez envoyés ce matin; mon oncle me charge de vous
dire qu'il n'a pu vous écrire aujourd'hui, étant fort occupé des soins à
donner à la Duchesse d'Aumale, qui est toujours dans un état assez grave,
mais que vous lui ferez grand plaisir si vous voulez venir passer au
Woodnorton la semaine du 22 au 29 novembre; il y aura quelques chasses à
Je viens de mon côté vous demander de nous faire le plaisir de venir, avec
Madame et Mademoiselle Reeve, déjeuner ici dimanche prochain à midi et
demie; c'est le seul jour où je puisse vous voir, car je pars lundi matin
pour le Worcestershire.
Veuillez me croire votre bien affectionné,
As to which the Journal has:--
_November 14th_.--Breakfasted at York House. The Duc d'Aumale came, but the
Duchesse was ill, and on December 6th she died.
The Comte de Paris telegraphed the news to Reeve the same evening, and
wrote the next day asking him to charge himself with sending a little
notice of it to the principal newspapers--a thing Reeve readily undertook
to do. Before receiving the request, he had already written expressing
his wish to attend the funeral, and the Comte de Paris acknowledged both
letters at the same time.
_From the Comte de Paris_
York House, le 7 décembre.
Mon cher Monsieur Reeve,--Je m'empresse de vous remercier de vos deux
lettres et de la manière dont vous avez répondu à ma demande.
Mon oncle Aumale est bien touché de l'intention que vous exprimez de venir
vous associer à sa douleur le jour des funérailles de ma tante. Elles son
fixées à vendredi prochain. La première cérémonie aura lieu à Orléans House
à 9-1/2h du matin, après quoi nous conduirons le corps à Weybridge, pour le
déposer dans le caveau de famille. Nous y serons vers midi, ou peut-être un
peu plus tard, car il est difficile de calculer très exactement l'arrivée
de ce triste convoi. Ce ne sera en tous cas pas avant midi.
Je termine en vous priant de me croire
Votre bien affectionné,
'I attended her funeral on the 10th'--Reeve noted in his Journal--'and went
in an immense procession from Twickenham to Weybridge.'
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, November 21st_.--I never had any taste for travelling. I would
willingly go a hundred miles for an hour's conversation with such or such a
person; but the miles themselves have little interest for me. However,
your tour in Portugal, as you describe it, would have tempted me. I like a
country which is different from all others. Still, I am quite sure that,
after having amused yourself in Portugal, you are very glad to be back in
Lord Clarendon may be quite easy; no difficulty affecting his department
will come from here. Country and Government are equally inclined to peace.
As to our home affairs, which alone have any interest just now, I am a
little sad, but not uneasy. We are returning--quietly, ignorantly, and with
tottering steps--into the right path, the parliamentary system. The country
is coming back to it. The Emperor does not, and will not, offer any serious
resistance to it. We shall make blunders, both in our procedure and
debates, but shall, nevertheless, make sensible progress. What we are in
want of is the men.
_From Lord Westbury_
_Hinton St. George, November 25th._--Mrs. Reeve, when I had the pleasure of
seeing her at Hinton, gave me an assurance that I should not be troubled
this year with any request to attend the Privy Council. Your letter,
therefore, is an act of _gross domestic insubordination_--a kind of petty
treason. Formerly it was the act of the husband that bound the wife; _mais
nous avons changé tout cela_; the act of the wife binds the husband. I
appeal unto Caesar. It is very easy for Lord Chelmsford and yourself, who
have your town houses in order, your servants, horses, carriages, and whole
establishments, not omitting the _placens uxor_, to talk of the 'patriotic
duty' of attending the Privy Council--having nothing else to do, and
wanting amusement; but my house is thoroughly dismantled, having been under
repair; I have not a room to sit down in with comfort, nor servants to
attend to me, nor a cook to cook my dinner, nor any of those _solatia_ or
_solamina_ which you have in profusion. Yet you, with great unconcern,
desire me to quit my family, and all my amusements and enjoyments, that I
may come to town to endure complete wretchedness, and have a bad dinner
and an indigestion everyday, _ut plebi placeam et declamatio fiam_. If
you think this reasonable and right, I am sure you have left all sense of
reasonableness in Lusitania. Besides, have you not a plethora of judicial
wealth and power? Have you not the Lord Justice, who has little else to do;
and the Admiralty Judge; and that great Adminiculum, the learned and pious
man whom, _honoris causâ_, I call Holy Joe? [Footnote: Probably sir Joseph
Napier, nominated to a place on the Judicial Committee by Disraeli in March
1868.] But to speak more gravely. Had I had the least conception that I
should have been wanted--that is, _really_ wanted--I would have made other
arrangements than I have done.... We shall now have a house full of people
until December 20th, and I cannot, without much offence, relieve myself
from these deferred engagements. A little while ago I was thrown out of my
shooting-cart; I injured my arm, which has brought on rheumatism, and I am
not in a condition to come up to a solitary and dismantled house in London
without anything requisite for the comfort of an old man. On January 20th,
until the beginning of appeals in the Lords, I will, if you need it, sit
and dispose of all the colonial and admiralty appeals. When will you come
down and shoot?
_To Lord Derby_
62 Rutland Gate, December 19th.
My dear Lord Derby, [Footnote: For some years Reeve had known him as Lord
Stanley. He had succeeded to the title on October 23rd.]--I cannot without
emotion address you by your present name. Although I never had the honour
of much personal acquaintance with your father, he has been, for the last
thirty years, an object of familiar interest even to those with whom he was
not familiar. His high spirit, his splendid eloquence, his public services,
have endeared him to thousands whom he hardly knew, and caused them to
share the feelings with which you, in a far higher degree, must regard this
great loss. I have no doubt, however, that you will support and increase
the honour of a name so illustrious, and I know no one more fit to bear
it.... Mrs. Reeve begs to join with me in again presenting to you our very
sincere regards, and I remain,
Very faithfully yours,
Of social engagements, the Journal mentions--
To Farnborough for Christmas, and thence to Timsbury till the end of the
year. I called at Broadlands, now occupied by the Cowper Temples.
_January 5th_, 1870.--To Hinton. Vice-Chancellor Stuart there. Lord
Westbury very amusing. Shooting every day. In Cudworth covers killed 192
The following letter from M. Guizot refers to an incident which caused a
tremendous sensation at the time, and--judged by the later events--may
be considered as a portent of the downfall of the Empire. Prince Pierre
Bonaparte had challenged M. Henri Rochefort, the editor of a violent
Republican journal which had published a scurrilous and abusive article.
M. Grousset, the writer of the article, took the responsibility, and, on
January 10th, sent his friends, Victor Noir and Ulric Fonvielle, to wait on
the Prince at his house in the Rue d'Auteuil. The Prince said his challenge
was to M. Rochefort; to M. Grousset he had nothing to say. A quarrel and a
free fight followed. Each man drew his revolver, and Victor Noir, mortally
wounded, broke out of the room, staggered into the street, and fell dead.
Fonvielle escaped uninjured. He and the Prince were the only witnesses of
what took place, and their stories directly contradicted each other. The
Prince was tried on a charge of murder, but was acquitted. On a civil trial
he was sentenced to pay 1,000 £ damages to the father of Victor Noir, as
compensation for the loss of his son's services.
_Val Richer, January 12th_.--I do not yet rightly understand the tragic
incident at Auteuil. I am inclined to think that Prince Pierre Bonaparte
was threatened and assaulted before using his revolver; the probabilities
are that he acted in self-defence. The trial will be curious. In any case,
it is a great misfortune for the Imperial Government, more so than for the
new Cabinet, which will certainly not be wanting in courage, and will be
supported by whoever is anxious to practise 'economy of revolution,' as a
friend of mine says.
I have friends in this Cabinet, honourable, liberal-minded, and sensible
men. Will a leader be found among them? We shall see. Hitherto organisation
has been everywhere wanting; in the Legislative Body, as in the Cabinet. I
see no reason to change the opinion I formed some time since, and perhaps
already mentioned to you; I am sad, rather than uneasy, for the future of
my country. She will not fall into the abyss; but, for want of political
foresight and firmness, will allow herself to be dragged along the edge of
it. Men's minds and characters are narrowed rather than corrupted.
In connexion with which the Journal has:--
_January 16th_.--Dined at Lord Granville's, with Lavalette, the new French
ambassador. The Emperor had just formed a more liberal ministry, with Daru
and Ollivier, which soon broke down owing to Buffet's _entêtement_.
_26th_.--Dinner at Clarendon's, to meet the Queen of Holland.
_From M. Guizot_
_Paris, January 31st_.--I have just read the article on Calvin with a real
and lively satisfaction, complete, so far as I am concerned; I am very
grateful to Mr. Cunningham (I think that is the author's name) for his kind
words, and for his sympathy with my description of Calvin and his time. Be
so good as to thank him for me; it is a pleasure to be so well understood
and set forth. As to Calvin, Mr. Cunningham does full justice to his
merits; I ask a little more indulgence for his faults, which belonged to
the time quite as much as to the man. Very few, even among superior men,
admitted the rights of conscience and liberty. Marnix de Ste.-Aldegonde
bitterly reproached the hero of the Reformation, William the Silent, with
tolerating Catholics in Holland. Melanchthon unreservedly approved of
the burning of Servetus. Catholic Europe was covered with stakes for the
Protestants, and, if Servetus had had the upper hand, I doubt if Calvin
would have received from him any better treatment than he received from
Calvin. I do not on that account detest the burning of Servetus any the
less; but I do not count it as a fault personal and peculiar to Calvin. In
every-day life and in systematic theology he ignored the rights of freedom.
The twofold error was enormous; but his policy and philosophy were equally
sincere, and, of all the eminent despots of history, he was, I think, one
of the least ambitious and most disinterested. He was almost forced into
power against his will, and he wielded it harshly, tyrannically, but
without seeking any personal gain, and he was still more severe to himself
than to those whom he treated so severely....
The Journal goes on:--
_March 5th_.--Visit to the Watneys, at Leamington, and to
Stratford-upon-Avon. Beautiful effect in the church, the organ playing
'Rest in the Lord.'
_12th_.--Evening at Lady Cowley's, for Queen of Holland.
Went to Isle of Wight with W. Wallace at Easter. The Bishop of Winchester
preached in Ventnor Church on April 24th (first Sunday after Easter).
_From M. Gulzot_
_Paris, April 7th_.--... It is curious to watch France, and I am also
curious as to the possible consequences of what is happening in England.
France has never been so liberal and so anti-revolutionary at the same
time. England is making a thoroughly liberal reform in Ireland, and at the
same time a severe law of repression for the defence of order. I wish and
hope for your success in both. I also hope that our attempt at quiet and
liberal reform will not fall through. But both for you and for us there
are rugged paths yet to traverse; the future is still darkly clouded. Even
after the success of our respective undertakings, Ireland will not be
pacified, and political liberty will not be established in France. There
is no need to be discouraged, the best of human works are incomplete and
insufficient; but there is need to beware of illusions, to be prepared for
disappointments, to be always ready to begin again. I moralise on politics.
Good sense is the law of politics, and what I have learnt from history,
above all, is that good sense is essentially moral. You will, therefore,
not be surprised that I mix morals and politics....
_From Lord Westbury_
_April 13th_.--How shall I thank you for your inspiriting letter, which was
as the sound of the trumpet to the aged war-horse! I fear my contemporaries
have taken a more accurate measurement of my power, and that I shall never
fulfil any such glorious destiny as you hold before my eyes. It is true of
many men that _possunt quia posse videntur_; and that they accomplish many
things simply because they are not fastidious. I should never do anything,
simply because I should tear up one day what I had written the preceding.
It would be Penelope's web. Our education is too aesthetical. Unless a
cultivated taste be overpowered by personal vanity, it is very difficult
to complete any composition. I can most truly say that I have never done
anything, speaking or writing, of which I could say, on the review, _mihi
We have a great difference of opinion in the members of the Digest
Commission. Many think that the work should be handed over to two or three
very able men (not judges or Emeriti Chancellors), who should be well paid;
and that to them, with a staff of subordinates, all the work should be
committed. Others think that there should be added to this establishment
some presiding power, consisting of one, two, or three distinguished
judges, to whom all questions should be referred, and whose duty it
should be to give an _imprimatur_ to the work. So we cannot agree on a
recommendation to the Government; and when we shall do so, but little
weight will attach to it.
The Journal here notes:--
_May 6th_.--Mansfield came back from India.
At the time of the Russian war, Reeve and Mansfield had been on terms of
intimacy, and, in fact, it was largely through Reeve's interest with Lord
Clarendon that Mansfield had been sent to Constantinople in 1855, as
military adviser to Lord Stratford de Redcliffe. Since then the intimacy
had been interrupted by Mansfield's absence in India, where he had served
with distinction during the Mutiny, and afterwards in command of the Bombay
army and as commander-in-chief since 1865. In the following year he was
raised to the peerage as Lord Sandhurst. The Journal notes:--
_May 26th_.--The King of Portugal made me a Commander of the Order of
Christ; but this was solely as chairman of the Lusitanian Mining Company.
The Duc d'Aumale, Mansfield, Lord Dunsany, Lord Northbrook, Stirling
Maxwell, Lady Molesworth dined with us.
_From the Marquis of Salisbury_
40 Dover Street, June 1st.
Dear Mr. Reeve,--It is my pleasing duty to inform you that the University
of Oxford wish to express their sense of your literary services and
attainments by conferring on you an honorary degree at the approaching
commemoration. I trust that it will not be disagreeable to you to accede
to their wishes in this matter, and that you will be able without
inconvenience to attend at Oxford to receive the degree. The day on which
they will be conferred will be on Tuesday, the 21st inst.
Believe me, yours very truly,
The Journal notes:--
_June 3rd_.--Excursion to Malvern, Hereford, and Worcester. Xavier Raymond
came to Bushey [Duc de Nemours']. I breakfasted there on the 10th. [On the
11th the Duke wrote]:--
Cher Monsieur Reeve,--Je lis ce matin en tête des colonnes du journal le
'Times,' un charmant premier article sur mon fils aîné, et portant même son
nom pour titre. Cet article inspiré par un bienveillant sentiment envers
lui et ma famille en général, met dans un brillant relief les services que
mon fils vient de rendre à son pays d'adoption. Cela a donc été pour moi
une extrême satisfaction que de le voir placé en première ligne dans le
journal le plus répandu du monde.
Je sais qu'il n'est pas permis de s'enquérir du nom de ceux qui écrivent
dans la presse anglaise. Mais si à vous le nom de l'auteur était connu,
dans ce cas-ci, cher Monsieur Reeve, et si vous appreniez aussi à qui est
due l'insertion de cet article, je vous serais très reconnaissant (dans le
cas toutefois où vous le jugerez convenable) de faire connaître à l'une et
à l'autre de ces personnes combien j'en ai été heureux et touché.
Plein du bon souvenir de votre visite d'hier, je vous renouvelle ici, cher
Monsieur Reeve, l'assurance de mes bien affectueux sentiments.
_From Mr. Delane_
_June 13th_.--I return the Duke's letter with many thanks. The story of
the Brazilian article is curious enough to be worth telling. At the
Rothschilds' ball on Wednesday last I was by an inadvertence placed at
supper next but one to the Duc de Nemours, and next to a beautiful young
lady. I had long been honoured by the Duc d'Aumale's acquaintance, but had
never before met his brother, and I only slowly became aware who were my
neighbours. Then, actually at the supper, among ortolans and peaches, it
occurred to me that the Comte d'Eu, of whose exploits I had been reading
that morning, and whom I had stupidly regarded as merely a Brazilian
general, must be the brother of the beautiful young lady next me, and
therefore a personage in whom the European public would take a very
different sort of interest from any that Marshal Coxios could command,
that, in short, as an Orleans prince, he would be worth an article, though
no one would have cared for a mere Brazilian general.
_From the Due de Nemours_
_Bushey Park, 15 juin_.--J'ai à la fois des remercîments et des
félicitations à vous adresser pour avoir pris la peine de chercher de qui
émanait l'aimable article du 'Times' sur mon fils aîné, et pour l'avoir si
bien découvert. Le compliment est assurément de très bon goût, et j'y suis
très sensible. Il augmente seulement encore mon regret de n'avoir pu, moi
aussi, faire à ce même bal la connaissance de l'auteur de cette aimable
_From Lord Westbury_
_June 17th_.--I read with 'perfect horror' last night the return of
business before the Judicial Committee which you were so good as to send
me. There are 350 appeals in all, of which 248 are from India. I do not
think less than two days can be allotted to each of these Indian appeals,
taking the average; that will require 496 days of sitting, being more than
two years; for you cannot, if the committee sat every day the Court of
Chancery does, exceed more than 210 days in the year. Now if to this amount
of duty for the Indian appeals be added the time required for the remaining
102 appeals, you cannot attribute to them less than 102 days, making in all
598 days, being at least three years' work for a committee sitting every
Whilst these arrears are being disposed of, a new crop of appeals to at
least the same amount, will be mature. What shall we do? 'Hills over hills
and Alps on Alps arise.' I shall mention the subject to-night. Pray, send
me this morning any suggestions that occur to you.
_June 18th_.--I am engaged to leave town for a short cruise at sea,
to-morrow early. I shall remain until Sunday evening. But it is for the
best that I cannot see you to-morrow, because I hope to 'interview' you on
Wednesday, after your return, with that renovation of genius and accretion
of knowledge which will accompany you on your return from Parnassus, after
having bathed in the fountain of the Muses. You must bring Mrs. Reeve a
faithful copy of the eulogistic speech of the public orator, and I will
translate it to her.
My notice is for Thursday. I shall propose the immediate creation of three
judges, the giving Colvile and Peel fitting remuneration--2,000 £. a year
each--and a large addition to the salary of the registrar.
The Journal then has:--
_June 20th_.--To Oxford, to stay with the Dean of Christchurch, on the
accession of Lord Salisbury. Went down with Sir E. Landseer.
_21st_.--Received the degree of D.C.L. from the University, in the
Sheldonian Theatre. Lord Salisbury greeted me as 'Vir potentissime in
republicâ literarum,' at which I looked up and laughed. Dined afterwards in
All Souls' library with the Vice-Chancellor.
* * * * *
Among the other distinguished persons who received the honorary D.C.L. at
the same time were Admirals Sir Henry Keppel and Sir John Hay, Sir William
Mansfield, and Sir Francis Grant, the President of the Royal Academy.
Mansfield gave the 'Gallery' some amusement by wearing a cocked hat and
feathers with his red doctor's gown, instead of the regulation academic
_From Lord Westbury_
_June 22nd_.--O vir doctissime et in republicâ literarum potentissime! So
said or sung the Chancellor of the University of Oxford, in violation of
all the traditions of the place; for Oxford never used before the phrase
'respublica literarum' which words and the thing signified she has ever
repudiated and abhorred; and to be _potentissimus in republicâ_ are jarring
and incoherent things. But let this hypercriticism pass, and when I see
Mrs. Reeve I shall tell her that the words were chosen with singular
felicity, and that they are not more remarkable for their truth and justice
than they are for their elegant latinity; but I will not say that you are a
doctor only _honoris causâ_, which are most emphatic words, and are cruelly
made to accompany the dignity; for, when translated, they mean: 'Oh,
doctor, do not presume to teach by virtue of this _semiplena graduatio_,
for it is only _honoris causâ_, or merely complimentary; and do not boast
this title as evidence of skill or erudition in laws, for they are
sounding words that signify nothing. How easy it is for envy and malice to
I hope Mrs. Reeve and your daughter were there, because it is something fit
and able to give genuine pleasure; and if I had been there I would have
answered with stentorian voice to the well-known question: 'Placetne vobis,
Domini Doctores? placetne vobis, Magistri?' 'Placet, imo valde placet.'...
It is difficult to tell the Government what ought to be done; for, first,
there should be great alteration in the Courts in the East Indies, and,
secondly, it is clear that the colonists and Indians will not be satisfied
unless the Privy Council is presided over by a first-chop man; and I am
assured that transferring three puisne judges from the Common Law Courts
would not be satisfactory. Can you call at my room in the House of Lords
to-morrow, at a few minutes after four?
Yours sincerely, and with deeper respect than ever,
I don't suppose you will now miss a single bird.
_From Senhor D. Jose Ferreira Pinto Basto_
_Lisbon, June 18th_.--The Portuguese Government do not present those on
whom the orders of knighthood are conferred with the decorations they are
entitled to wear. These consist, for a commander, in a placard, which is
worn on the coat over the left side of the breast; a large cross hanging
from a wide ribbon fastened round the neck; and a small cross, fastened by
a narrow ribbon to the upper button-hole, on the left side of the coat.
The crosses corresponding to the degree of commander are, for the Order of
Christ, the same as those allowed to simple chevaliers, but having a heart
over them for distinction, and the ribbons are red. The large pendant cross
is scarcely ever worn, unless it be on a very solemn Court day, and even
then not generally; and the small cross, which was formerly in constant
use, when the pendant one was not worn, is now out of fashion, and either
entirely left off or, at the most, substituted by a small ribbon on the
coat buttonhole, when no other decoration is worn. What is generally worn
on ceremonial occasions is simply the placard, such as I now send you; if,
however, you should wish to have the other insignia, please to let me know
it, that I may send them. These insignia are, of course, made more costly
with diamonds and rubies, to be worn on great festivities; but even then,
and for general use, they are usually in silver and enamel, as the placard
I don't think there is any need of your directly expressing to anyone here
your thanks for the distinction conferred upon you; the more so since you
have already expressed them through the Portuguese Minister in London.
It is here that the Journal mentions the death of the friend whose letters
have occupied such a prominent place in these pages:--
_June 22nd_.--Fête at Strawberry Hill. Lord Clarendon was there, looking
very ill, and on the 27th he died--'Multis ille flebilis occidit, nulli
flebilior quam mihi.'
To 'Fraser's Magazine' for August Reeve contributed a graceful article, 'In
Memory of George Villiers, Earl of Clarendon,' in which, recording his many
public services, he especially dwelt on the very important service he had
rendered to his country during the period of his being Lord-Lieutenant of
Ireland, and on the fact that this service had had the singular honour of
being directly referred to in the Queen's Speech on proroguing Parliament
on September 5th, 1848, which concluded, 'The energy and decision shown by
the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland deserve my warmest approbation.' Reeve was
told by Lady Clarendon that her husband 'regarded these emphatic words as
the most enviable distinction of his life.'
At the same time another article, 'In Memoriam,' appeared in 'Macmillan's
Magazine.' This was by Reeve's colleague at the Privy Council Office, Mr.
Arthur Helps, whose acquaintance with Lord Clarendon had been by no means
so intimate. His appreciation was thus written from general repute rather
than from personal knowledge, but it contains one remarkable passage that
may be repeated in order to emphasise it:--
'He--Lord Clarendon--was a man who indulged, notwithstanding his public
labours, in an immense private correspondence. There were some persons to
whom, I believe, he wrote daily; and perhaps in after years we shall be
favoured--those of us who live to see it--with a correspondence which will
enlighten us as to many of the principal topics of our own period.'
Whether Reeve was one of the persons Helps alluded to must remain doubtful.
In the strict sense of the words, Lord Clarendon did not write to him
daily; but at times he wrote not only daily, but three times a day,
[Footnote: See _ante_, vol. i. pp. 296-7.] and the letters, or extracts of
letters, now printed, form but a very small portion of the great number
which Reeve preserved.
The Journal then mentions:--
_July 3rd_.--Breakfasted at Orleans House with Prince Philip of Würtemberg.
Matters looked threatening abroad, and on the 14th the rupture took place
between Franco and Prussia. On the 18th war was declared. On the 25th we
dined at York House. I said to the Comte de Paris, 'How is the Emperor to
attack Germany?' Nobody thought at first that the war would be in France;
but we were soon undeceived, and I speedily discovered the danger. The
Duc d'Aumale wrote to me, 'Vous avez deviné ma pensée de Français et de
I had hired a small moor at Ballachulish from Cameron, the innkeeper there.
Maclean of Ardgour, to whom it belonged, lent me a keeper and some dogs.
The hills were steep, the shooting bad; but the life there most agreeable.
I went down on August 3rd. W. Wallace was with us; and on the 5th we were
installed at Ballachulish for six weeks. They were spent in shooting,
sea-fishing, boating, &c. Fairfax Taylor [Footnote: Son of John Edward
Taylor; see _ante_, p. 117.] came, and Longman. The Trevelyans Fyfes, and
Forsters were at the hotel on the other side of the ferry. We were there
forty-five days. I went back to town by Greenock on September 21st.
Meanwhile the course of the war was most eventful. On August 6th the battle
of Wörth was won by the Prussians, followed by a series of French defeats.
On September 2nd Macmahon and the Emperor capitulated at Sedan. William
Forster was at Ballachulish, and, as despatches were sent from the F. O. to
cabinet ministers, we learnt the fact from him at 8.30 P.M. on September
3rd. Gladstone, though prime minister, volunteered to write an article in
the 'Review' on the war, which he did. I kept the secret, but it leaked
out through the 'Daily News' on November 3rd, and made a great noise. The
'silver streak' was in that article.
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, July 29th_.--Among the many bad actions described in history,
there is one which is very rare; it is the artifice of a tempter who throws
the blame of his attempt at seduction upon the person who rejected it,
perhaps after listening to it. But this is what Bismarck has done. You have
probably not forgotten what happened in 1868, and what I wrote about it at
the time, in the 'Revue des deux Mondes' of September 15th. I take pleasure
in here quoting my own words:--
'It is said that M. de Bismarck attempted to engage France on the side of
Prussia; and, in order to tempt the Imperial Government, offered to remodel
Europe as well as Germany, and to give France a large share in this
redistribution of nations. I do not know how much truth there was in these
rumours, which so deeply moved Belgium and Holland, amongst others; I will
not stop to discuss reports and suppositions. However this may be, if such
offers were really made, Napoleon III. did wisely in refusing them; he did
not raise himself to the throne as a victorious warrior, and France has no
longer a passion for conquest. But did he, in refusing, do all he could to
stop or restrain Prussia in the ambitious course into which M. de Bismarck
was forcing her, and to influence the reorganisation of Germany according
to the legitimate interests of France? I do not think so; but I put this
question also on one side,' &c. &c.
I need not say that I did not lightly credit the rumours of the overtures
made by Bismarck to the French Government; they were not only widespread
and believed by those who had the best information, but my friends in
Holland sent me precise details, and I immediately got the 'Journal des
Débats' to publish an article which treated this attempted temptation as it
deserved, and pointed out the honourable and pacific policy which France
ought to follow on this occasion. I have reason to think that men of good
sense in the French Government, who were trying to make the policy of law
and peace prevail, congratulated themselves on being thus loudly upheld and
Never forget, 'my dear sir,' what the position of the friends of law and
peace is in our general policy. You must some time have read Bürger's
ballad of the 'Wild Huntsman,' founded on the legend of a certain nobleman,
on the banks of the Rhine, a great hunter, who, if I mistake not, could
never mount his horse for the chase without being accompanied, on either
side, by a good and a bad angel, one urging him to follow the beaten track,
and respect the rights of property, the other urging him to rush across the
fields, trampling down harvest, gardens, and passers-by, careless of what
injury he inflicted.
For a long time France, both as to her Government and her people, has been
in the position of this hunter, always accompanied by the two angels; all
that has happened in France and in Europe during the last eighty years has
put us in that position, and it is sometimes the good angel, sometimes the
bad, which has made itself heard, and has seemed on the point of becoming
the hunter's master. There is not a right-minded and sensible man in Europe
who has not endeavoured to help the good angel and defeat the efforts of
the wicked tempter.
In my opinion, the Imperial Government was wrong in not accepting the
withdrawal of the candidateship of the Prince of Hohenzollern; a withdrawal
announced by the Prince himself, accepted by the King of Prussia, and
accepted and officially communicated to France by the Spanish Government.
This was held to be insufficient satisfaction for France, though I think
neither necessity nor prudence called for a second demand, which offended
the pride of all parties; and the manner in which it was rejected has
destroyed the last chance of peace. Till that moment, the good angel had
prevailed; but now the bad angel is speaking. But if there is one man in
Europe who cannot avail himself of this blunder to rid himself of the
responsibility of war, that man is surely the tempter of 1868....
_To Mr. Dempster_
_Ballachulish, August 14th_.--As it is entirely to you that we owe our
residence in this enchanting place, it would be very ungrateful not to tell
you how much we are enjoying it. I think it is by far the most picturesque
spot in all Scotland; and ever since we arrived, ten days ago, the sea has
been as blue as the Aegean, and the hills as clear as the isles of Greece.
Not one cloud or shower in ten days, but the heat so great that we find
shooting arduous work. There is not much game, but I am better off than
most of my neighbours, who complain loudly. I think I can insure any day
five or six brace. It certainly is not a good year, nor is this a grouse
country.... I think, whatever else this war may bring about, it has
finished the Empire and the Emperor, and so far I rejoice; but I confess I
have no sympathy at all with the Prussians.
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, September 10th_.--I am just up, my dear Sir, having been in
bed for a fortnight. Grief and indignation are unhealthy at eighty-three. I
am better, and only wish I was as sure of the convalescence of France as of
my own. It is true that France has before her more time for recovery than I
I will say nothing of the fallen Empire. I should say more than is seemly
and less than is true. Never was fall more deserved, more necessary, and
Neither will I say anything of the new Government. It is what it professes
to be, a power pledged to defend the country. A national constituent
Assembly has just been convoked, and meanwhile everything will be done to
preserve the honour and integrity of France. This, for the present, is the
one idea and the one passion of the whole country, especially of Paris. I
hope that the deeds will correspond to the passion.
There are two points on which, in spite of my present weakness, I wish
to give you my opinion at once, so as to awaken your interest, and the
interest of all the friends of European order and of France now in England.
There is much to be regretted in the general policy of Europe since 1815.
Many faults have been committed which might have been avoided, many
improvements which might have been made have been miscalculated or have
passed as dreams. But throughout this age, and for more than half a
century, rising above all faults and blunders, royal or popular,
diplomatic or parliamentary, one great and novel fact has dominated the
policy of Europe--there has been no question of a war of ambition and of
conquest; no State has attempted to aggrandise itself by force at the
expense of other States; [Footnote: Guizot's enthusiasm or patriotism here
led him into a somewhat reckless assertion. In point of fact, there was
not one of the great Continental Powers which, during the previous fifty
years, had not 'attempted to aggrandise itself by force,' and,
necessarily, 'at the expense of other States.' With the exception of
Austria, they had done more than 'attempt'--they had effected the
aggrandisement.] respect for peace and the law of nations has become a
ruling maxim of international policy. When internal revolution in any
State has rendered territorial changes necessary, these changes have been
recognised and accepted only after the examination and consent of Europe.
Belgium and Greece have taken rank as European States only by the putting
on one side all the yearnings of French, Russian, or English ambition. And
when, in 1844 and 1848, the Emperor Nicholas, in his familiar interviews
with your ambassador at St. Petersburg, proposed that Russia and England
should act in concert, and by joint conquest, as he said, put an end to
the decrepitude of the Ottoman Empire, two English ministers, Lord
Aberdeen and Lord John Russell, to their great honour, rejected any such
idea, as an outrage on the law of nations, and the peace of Europe.
I have no hesitation in affirming, my dear Sir, that this is the greatest
and most salutary feature of the first half of this century, and has
contributed more than anything else to the revival of principles of equity
and justice in the relations between governments and their people, to
the increased prosperity of different nations, and to the progress of
civilisation in the world. And, new as its rule yet is, this fact has been
sufficient to stop, or at least to check in their evil developements, the
noxious germs of an ambitious and violent policy, revivified in Europe
by the revolutionary crises of 1848. Temptations have certainly not been
wanting to governments and parties since that date. But in 1848 the French
Republic respected the peace of Europe and the law of nations; in 1852 the
French Empire hastened to declare that it was peace; and when, leaving
that, she threw herself into the Italian war, is it credible that she would
have been contented with Nice and Savoy as the price of the support she
gave to the Italians if she had not been restrained by the good modern
principle of European policy, the condemnation of the spirit of ambition
and conquest? [Footnote: Not to speak of the chance of having to deal with
Prussia. Cf. _ante_, p. 27.]
It is this legitimate and guiding principle which is at present ignored,
attacked, and in great danger. I have no intention of entering here upon
the question of German unity, or of inquiring how far the consequences of
Sadowa are to be attributed to the real and spontaneous effort of national
sentiment amongst the Germans. I waive all discussion on this point.
I do not suppose anyone will say that in this great German event Prussian
ambition had no share, or that force and conquest did not act side by side
with the impulse of national sentiment. But I do not now meddle with what
has been done in Germany; that has nothing in common with the present
pretensions of Prussia to Alsace and Lorraine. Have these provinces given
any manifestation, any appearance, of a desire to be included in the German
unity? Is not the Prussian policy in this openly and exclusively a policy
of ambition and of conquest, such as would have been followed, from more or
less specious motives of royal or national selfishness, by Louis XIV. in
the seventeenth, by Frederick II. in the eighteenth, by Napoleon I. in the
nineteenth century? such as the modern publicists and moralists have so
often condemned and fought against? such, in fine, as all nations, in all
ages--and especially Europe in our own times--have so cruelly suffered
from? I say no more. I should be ashamed to insist upon what is so clear.
I have nothing to do with Utopian ideas. I do not believe in perpetual
peace, nor in the absolute rule of the law of nations as affecting the
rivalries of governments and the facts of history. I know that ambitious
intrigue and violent enterprise will always have a part in the destinies of
nations. I only ask that ambition and force shall not be permitted to take
that part, controlled only by their own will. At least they ought to be
recognised for what they are, and called by their right names; their
claims, and the results of them, ought to be placed face to face with the
policy of peace and the law of nations; and, lastly, it ought not to be
forgotten that this, the only durable and good policy, has prevailed in
Europe for half a century, and that it would be shameful and unfortunate to
allow it to fall undefended before the first success of the old policy of
ambition and conquest.
In the severe and dangerous trial which she is now undergoing, France may
strengthen herself with the thought that her present and personal policy
is in exact agreement with the European policy of peace and the law of
nations. France has no ambition, no remote designs or secret aim; she asks
for nothing; she is defending her rights, her honour, and her territory.
Will the Powers, who have hitherto proclaimed their neutrality, assist
her by assisting to maintain the European policy of peace and the law of
nations? I shall be surprised if they do not, the more so as they could
do it without seriously compromising themselves. If their intervention by
force of arms were necessary, it would undoubtedly be at once effective;
but any such necessity is quite out of the question; the neutral Powers are
stronger than they themselves are perhaps aware, and their moral strength
is amply sufficient. Let them plainly assert their disapproval of this
attack on the territorial integrity of France; and in support of their
disapproval, let them declare that, in any case, they will not recognise
any change in the territory of France which France herself will not accept.
It is my deep and firm conviction that this would be sufficient to put an
end to any such attempt, and to check the policy of ambition and conquest,
without which the peace of Europe cannot be re-established. Is France to be
left alone to sustain this great and good cause at all risks? or will the
neutral Powers, without any great risk to themselves, give her such support
as will ensure her triumph? It is for the Powers to answer this question. I
am very old to be surprised at anything; and yet I should be surprised if
England did not see the greatness of the part she is called upon to play
under existing circumstances. For many years she sustained in Europe, by
war, the policy of respect for the laws of nations; will she not uphold it
to-day by peace?
Adieu, my dear Sir, je suis fatigué. Je vais me coucher, et tout à vous,
Should you think proper to make any use of this letter, either by privately
showing it to anyone, or by giving it a wider publicity, I have no
objection. I leave the question of fitness and opportunity in England to
you. For my part, my only wish is that my opinions and sentiments in this
important crisis should be well known both in France and England.
The following note is endorsed by Reeve 'Due d'Aumale on the capitulation
of Sedan,' which took place on September 2nd. It is, however, impossible to
suppose that the Due d'Aumale did not hear of an event so astounding till
three weeks after it had happened, and the note probably refers more
immediately to the occupation of Versailles by the Prussians under the
Crown Prince, on September 20th, or the reported arrival on the 23rd of
General Bourbaki at Chislehurst, to consult with the Empress about the
surrender of Metz. The endorsement was most likely written some time
afterwards, and in momentary forgetfulness of the date.
_From the Due d'Aumale_
Orleans House, 23 septembre.
Cher Monsieur,---Jamais je n'aurais cru que je vivrais assez pour voir un
pareil jour. Vous devinez tout ce que mon coeur éprouve.
Vous êtes du bien petit nombre de ceux avec qui il m'est possible de causer
en ce moment, et vous me ferez du bien si vous venez déjeuner ici dimanche
prochain, 25, à midi 1/2. Mille amitiés,
_From Lord Granville_
Walmer Castle, October 2nd.
My dear Reeve,--I was very sorry to miss an opportunity of seeing you twice
last week. Our hours are late, while you adopt the judicious maxim of
Charles Lamb. I thought the article [Footnote: Gladstone's article (see
_ante_, p.178) which was published in the October number of the _Review_.
Lord Granville saw the proof slips.] excellent and very instructive; not
always quite judicial. It will be read with immense pleasure on its own
As far as we have gone we have surely adhered to the declaration made to
Parliament--'Neutrality, with as friendly relations as is compatible with
impartiality; exercise of the duties and maintenance of our rights, as
neutrals.' We have protected Belgium with minimum risk to ourselves. We
have given advice when it was acceptable and effective, such as that which
led to the meeting of Favre and Bismarck. We have not obtruded advice when
it would have been impotent excepting for harm. We hae reserved complete
liberty of action for any contingency. All the neutral nations have been
at our feet, anxious to know what we would do, professing to be ready to
follow our example. One of the belligerents has already come to us for
assistance. Those who think we have done nothing of course consider it an
easy and inglorious task; but it requires a little firmness to resist not
only the complaints of belligerents and the cajoleries of neutrals, but
also the changeable gusts of public opinion at home. Yours sincerely,
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, October 2nd._--I understand you, my dear Sir; 'you' meaning
your Cabinet. You want to see if France will defend herself energetically
enough, obstinately enough, to warrant the neutral Powers saying to
the Prussians, 'What you attempt is impossible; you are stirring up an
interminable contest, which is becoming an evil and a peril for Europe.'
Until that moment comes, your Cabinet does not think that the intervention
of the neutral Powers in favour of peace could be effective.
Many reasons, some good, some plausible, may be adduced in support of
a waiting policy. But take care! it often aggravates the questions it
postpones. Consider what is actually taking place at the present moment.
Prussia puts forward her claims more and more distinctly; France is
exasperated and rejects them more and more positively. You can have no
idea of the effect produced throughout France by the conversation of M. de
Bismarck with M. Jules Favre. Bismarck, indeed, seems to have some
notion of it, for he attempts to extenuate what he said or allowed to be
understood. Evidently the result of this interview has been to leave the
belligerents mutually more embittered than they were before; and the
intervention of the neutral Powers at the present time is thus rendered
I now put this incident on one side, and am going to the root of the
matter. You want to see if France will defend herself energetically
and obstinately. Look at what she has done already. The Prussians have
certainly obtained great successes. They have beaten two of our regular
armies. At this moment they are before Paris. Is Paris terror-struck?
Do the Prussians enter it? I am not trusting to child's talk and vulgar
boasting. My son William, and my son-in-law Cornelis de Witt, are now
both in Paris, both in the National Guard, both clever, sensible men, not
credulous, not given to boasting, and good judges of what is going on
around them. They both write that Paris is able and determined to defend
itself obstinately. And among the most cautious of my friends, those who
doubted it at first are now of the same opinion as my sons. By the last
balloon from Paris I received a letter, dated September 21st, from a
simple, obscure citizen. He writes:--'Our Paris, bristling with bayonets,
is a splendid sight; perfect order, glowing patriotism, and a resolve to
fight to the death. The insolence of Bismarck's reply to Jules Favre has
enraged and electrified all hearts. The Prussians will pay dearly for their
blunder in condemning us to heroism or despair. Yesterday was a good day;
in two places, Villejuif and St. Denis, we attacked the Prussians and
I do not know if this degree of ardour and confidence is to be accepted
as general. I quote it as an illustration of the feeling in Paris on
the seventh day of the siege. The fighting is at present round the
fortifications; later on it will be on the ramparts, and then in the
streets. First the detached forts; then the _enceinte_; then the
barricades. And when it comes to these--if it ever gets so far--independent
of the organised forces of all kinds, there will be the populace, the Paris
mob, intelligent and bold men, who fight well on the barricades for the
very fun of it.
How long will this defence of Paris last? I do not know, and am not going
to prophesy. But what I do know, what I hear from all sides, is that it
will last long enough to excite a patriotic and warlike sentiment through
the whole land. France is not peopled with heroes; there are the bold and
the timid, as in every other country; but there are heroes enough--and
others will arise--to keep the nation in a state of fever, and consequently
Europe in a state of alarm inconsistent with true peace, with the
prosperity of the nations and the security of European order.
The Prussians, and, as I am told, Bismarck himself, have reckoned, and are
perhaps still reckoning, on our internal dissensions and quarrels, kept
alive by the traditions and the hopes of the old parties. It is a natural
error, but made in complete ignorance of the actual state of things.
National sentiment has overcome the old discord. One sole, universal and
absorbing passion dominates all parties--the passion of defending the
soil and honour of France. Two of the most illustrious Vendéens, MM. de
Cathelineau et Stofflet, have asked for and received from the Government
an authorisation to assist them against the Prussians. MM. Rochefort and
Gustave Flourens, formerly the most ardent democrats, have joined the
government of General Trochu, and are preparing barricades, to maintain a
fierce struggle against the besiegers at the gates and in the streets of
Paris, if it should ever be necessary.
7 P.M.--My letter was interrupted by the arrival of the evening papers,
and a letter from my daughter Pauline, dated September 25th, brought by a
balloon. I copy the following, _verbatim_:--
'After being on guard the day before yesterday, for twenty-six hours,
without anything worse than repeated alarms, my husband and son returned
and are somewhat rested. Yesterday we went to Montmartre--a very populous
and stirring quarter. I cannot tell you often enough how well Paris is
behaving; enthusiasm and unanimity prevail everywhere; the good and the
wise have silenced the fools. This will raise up France; it is a balm for
many sorrows. I can assure you the country is not demoralised. I do not
know how long the trial will last, but we shall be the better for it.'
Admit that if this conduct is maintained, if Paris--which in June 1848
suppressed the revolutionary anarchy in her own bosom--in 1870 stops a
foreign invasion, and holds it at bay before her ramparts, it will be a
great deed, worthy of esteem and sympathy. If in presence of such a fact,
your neutrality should continue cold and inert, the friends of European
peace and of the good understanding between France and England would have
great cause for astonishment. It is for this reason that I conjure England
and her Government to give the matter their serious consideration.
The Journal here gives a short sketch of a month's holiday:--
October 12th.--Started for Ireland. Crossed in a gale. To Dunsany on the
14th. 15th, drove with Lord Dunsany to Trim; saw the castle; Larachor,
Swift's living; Dangan, now quite ruined; and back by Lord Longford's.
17th, to Dartrey. Met the Verulams there, and Lady Meath. 21st, drove to
Coote Hill fair. 24th, to Belfast and Clandeboye. Some days with Lord
Dufferin at Clandeboye. Professor Andrews came over from Belfast. 30th,
back to Dublin to stay with Mansfield, who was now commander-in-chief
in Ireland. Saw Lord Spencer--lord-lieutenant. November 1st, crossed to
Holyhead and went to Teddesley, where Christine joined me. Back to town on
_From Lord Stanhope_
_Chevening, October 11th_.--I have been reading with much interest the
article on Queen Anne in the 'Edinburgh,' and I hope you will allow me to
express to you how much I am gratified at the favourable view which it
takes of my performance. The reviewer and I, as I am glad to find,
often agree in our views of men and things; and whenever we differ, our
difference is expressed in terms that cannot but give great pleasure to any
The reviewer, in this case, has certainly one main advantage over some of
my other critics. They seem to have no knowledge of Queen Anne's reign
except what my book imparted to them, and they therefore criticised my book
on its own merits or demerits alone. Here, on the contrary, the writer is,
I see, most deeply versed in all the memoirs and published records of those
times, which he can bring to bear with great effect upon any passage that
he desires either to controvert or to confirm.
It strikes me very forcibly, from my acquaintance with your style, that the
writer of this article is no other than yourself. [Footnote: The article
was by Herman Merivale (d. 1874).] If so, pray accept my sincere thanks; if
not, pray convey them from me to the critic unknown.
Lady Stanhope and I have been to North Wales and Devonshire, but settled at
Chevening ten or twelve days ago. From here we went without delay to call
upon the Empress at Chislehurst; as indeed we were bound to do, having in
former years received great kindness from them, and been their guests for
a week at Compiègne. Nothing could be more touching and gracious than her
manner. She had tears in her eyes all the while we were with her, and her
voice was often choked by emotion; yet she did not let fall a single word
of invective or personal reproach against her enemies in France. She told
me that her first wish on reaching England had been to proceed with her
son to the Emperor at Wilhelmshöhe; but on applying to the Prussian
authorities, she could obtain no assurance that she and her son should not
be treated as prisoners of war; and under these circumstances the Emperor
forbade her to come.
Poor, poor Paris! when shall you and I ever see it again?
_From Lord Westbury_
_Hinton, November 11th_. I kept myself free from engagements during the
first three weeks of November, thinking I might be called on to do suit and
service at the Judicial Committee; but I have not made any provision for
December, as I thought it was fully understood (certainly by me) at the end
of last session, that, from the end of Michaelmas term until Christmas, the
Lords Justices would have charge of the Judicial Committee for the whole
of each week, or certainly four days in every week. We calculated that the
most important business on the appeal side in Chancery would be so reduced
by the two courts of appeal during Michaelmas term that the Lord Chancellor
alone would suffice for all necessities during December. I have therefore
postponed every engagement here until December. My house will be full; I
cannot therefore give you any aid; but I am not sorry for it, for if the
arrears were at all reduced, _nothing would be done_ in the appointment
of a permanent tribunal, with a proper staff of judges. You must still be
Atlas staggering under the weight of your huge _Orbis Causarum_. Around
your feet must be millions of Hindoos, crying aloud for justice. It is only
this spectacle for gods and men that will move the Government to do its
It would be easy for me to attend if my establishment and family were
in town. But if I promised you a fortnight in December, I must put off
numerous engagements and remove my servants, horses, &c., to London, only
to bring them down again here for Christmas; or, at the risk of being ill
as well as wretched, I must go to London alone, into a cold deserted house,
with the attendance at most of two female servants. No; you must get as
much as you can out of the Lords Justices, who must begin the task of
learning Hindoo and Mahomedan law. Besides, if I disposed of twenty Indian
appeals in December (a most unlikely thing), it would be the signal for
adding forty more to the list, and so you would be more encumbered than
ever. It is useless to make these poor spasmodic efforts. The thing must be
done effectually. You are hopelessly bankrupt, and the driblets of aid you
solicit will not enable you to stave off ruin.
An article by Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen on the 'Business of the House of
Commons,' published in the 'Edinburgh Review' for January 1871, was
submitted in proof to the Speaker, Mr. Denison, whose comments drew from
the writer the following reply:--
_From Mr. E. H. Knatchbull-Hugessen_ [Footnote: At this time
under-secretary of state for the Home Department: created Lord Brabourne in
1880; died in 1893.]
_Smeeth, November 23rd_.--The Speaker knows more than I do, if he knows
that it is an understood thing 'that a committee shall next session be
appointed to consider the present mode of conducting the public business.'
It is not generally known; and I doubt the policy of alluding, in an
article which may be read by the public generally, to that which is only
known to a privileged few. You, however, must be the best judge, and of
course I have no objection to insert a sentence or two of allusion to this
fact (?) [Footnote: The (?) is Mr. Knatchbull-Hugessen's.] if you wish it;
but if pressing business--or war--postpones this committee, the 'Review'
will look rather foolish.
When you say the article is 'rather too multifarious,' I quite agree that
it might be condensed and curtailed. But even had I time to go through it
again with this intention, I frankly own that I should doubt the expediency
of doing so. I wrote it _currente calamo_, and my object was to attack the
existing system upon many points at once, in order to carry some--just as
an army besieging a town may make half a dozen attacks, of which three,
being feints, give a better chance of success to the other three. You
will observe that I do sum up the four prominent points: 1, _clôture_; 2,
limitations of motions for adjournment; 3, public bill revision committee;
4, restrictions upon counts-out.
I quite agree with what the Speaker writes about our 'absurdly late hours.'
I have no strong feeling upon the Wednesday question, and perhaps the
Speaker is right, although I think the point is alluded to in a manner not
too strong nor too 'disparaging' to the fixed hour, as I only recommend
that a division, instead of an adjournment, either upon main question or
adjournment, should take place compulsorily at the fixed hour.
I return you the Speaker's letter. I don't know whether you could
conveniently run down here on Saturday and spend a quiet Sunday. You would
find my wife and me alone, excepting Godfrey Lushington, who is coming to
discuss highway bills. We could have a talk over the matter then. If you
cannot manage it, write me word how you wish the article altered, and I
will do it. I confess, however, that I think, as a preliminary attack
upon abuses which will require closer and more detailed grappling with
hereafter, it had better not be much altered.
_From the Queen of Holland_
Hague, December 26th.
My dear Mr. Reeve, [Footnote: The Queen of Holland seems to have laid down
a somewhat curious rule in regard to her correspondence with Reeve: when
she was in Holland, she wrote to him in English; when she was in England,
she wrote in French.]--Your most interesting letter reached me a few days
ago. Ever since, I have been trying to get some of the papers relating to
the Luxembourg question; however, the one enclosed is the only one I have
been able to obtain. Such is the fear of the kingdom of the Netherlands
to be involved in any of the impending Luxembourg difficulties, that
everything relating to that part of the world is scrupulously ignored; and
if the papers are not claimed at Luxembourg, where the most jealous of men,
Prince Henry, governs, you cannot obtain the real truth. The fact is, Mr.
de Bismarck _a cherché une querelle d'Allemand_, first to obtain a free
passage through the Luxembourg railroads; in the future, to annex the
little grand duchy, to close the frontier on that side entirely.
This, however, is still kept for a few months hence, as Mr. de B. would not
be put quite on the same line with Prince Gortschakoff, though they are
perfectly of the same opinion.
It is a sad time, a very bad symptom, when principles, engagements,
treaties, are all _à la merci_ of two or three unscrupulous men.
Forgive the haste in which I am compelled to write, this time of the year
being particularly busy. Remember me kindly to Mrs. Reeve, and believe me,
dear Mr. Reeve, very sincerely yours,
The Journal here has:--
The French artists being driven over by the war, Millais gave a dinner, on
December 20th, to Gérôme and Heilbuth--interesting. I took Gérôme to see
Herbert's Moses in the House of Lords, but it was invisible from a fog.
We all dined with Lady Molesworth on Christmas Day, and ended the year with
the Van de Weyers at New Lodge.
January 3rd, 1871.--We had a small dinner to Sir William Mansfield and Lord
Elcho. On the 5th to Aldermaston (Higford Burr), with Bruce, [Footnote:
Afterwards Lord Aberdare.] Colvile, [Frank Buckland], &c.
Professor Sybel was not one of Reeve's frequent correspondents, and the
following extract is from the only letter of his which has been preserved,
probably the only one ever written. The primary cause of it was some
trifling business connected with the exchange of publications--the
'Edinburgh Review' and Sybel's 'Historische Zeitschrift;' but, having
settled that, the course of events tempted him, as a German and an
historian, to continue.
_From Professor von Sybel_
Bonn, January 9th.
Hochgeehrter Herr,--... What a change in our circumstances since I had last
the pleasure of seeing you! To us, Germans, it would often appear as a
dream, did not our sacrifices and our efforts bring the reality vividly
before us. The desire for a speedy conclusion of the war is general; but, I
am proud to say, no less general is the determination to fight and to bleed
till we have brought it to a satisfactory issue. We are resolved not to be
attacked again as we were in July, and on that account we will move our
frontier to the Vosges. We will fight until the French acknowledge us as
having rights and position equal to their own, till the organs of their
Government cease from their New Year animadversion, such as the 'Siècle'
has published, and we will crush everyone who calls in question our place
as one of the Great Powers of Europe; and in thus rooting out this boast of
supremacy, we believe we are earning the gratitude of all Europe.
Hochachtungsvoll und ergebenst
H. v. SYBEL.
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, January 16th._--I received the 'Edinburgh Review' yesterday,
and read your article at once. It is excellent--the language of a profound
observer, and of a true friend of France. There are pages I should like
all my countrymen at all able to understand them to learn by heart, among
others from these words (p. 22): 'The life of man is so short,' to these:
'the collective strength of a nation may be sensibly diminished by it.' You
have here laid your finger on the great evil of our democracy: 'It readily
sacrifices the past and the future to what is supposed to be the interest
of the present.' If I were in Paris, I should like to have a translation of
nearly the whole article [Footnote: 'France,' in the _Review_ for January
1871. The article was republished in _Royal and Revolutionary France_, with
the title 'France in 1871.'] published in our newspapers. But I am not
there; the Prussian shells go in my stead.
I am told that the opening of your Parliament is fixed for February 8th. I
will wait until you can let me know this with certainty, and will then send
you the letter I mentioned. But I must beg you not to forward it to its
address till my translator--Miss Martin--reports to you that it is ready.
It seems to me very desirable that the translation should be published as
soon as the letter itself has been delivered. I understand that, on this
condition, the 'Times' will give the whole of it, which will ensure it
the widest possible publicity in England, where its publicity is the most
important. The French edition will not appear till after the translation
has been published in the 'Times.'
_From the Queen of Holland_
Hague, January 17th.
Dear Mr. Reeve,--I have received your letter. I have received the
'Edinburgh Review.' I did not glance over the pages, I read and re-read
them; and I thank you for the real enjoyment they have afforded me. True in
thought, admirable in expression, there can be but one judgement on both
your articles, and I will certainly endeavour to have them translated into
Dutch, to spread the truth. Allow me only to regret the great severity with
which you treat the fallen Empire. I put aside every personal feeling, but
I remain convinced that posterity will be more lenient in judgement than
the present in the raging storm. There were faults in the system, inherent
and inherited. As to the head of the system, few men have been more
naturally kind and good. He had the weakness of these natures--wishing to
content everyone. No question of principle seemed to him worthy of the
inestimable enjoyment of peace. Avec les différents partis il se laissait
aller à des paroles, à des engagements contradictoires; de là une apparence
de dissimulation, bien éloignée de sa nature. The prisoner of Wilhelmshöhe
belongs to the past. To those that have known and loved him falls the task
of obtaining justice for him. I cannot talk of the present events, of the
destruction of Paris. I bow my head and I hope in God's justice.
Will you remember me kindly to Mrs. Reeve? and believe me, with real
gratitude, truly and sincerely yours,
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, February 7th._--I have received from Mr. Gladstone a letter
dated January 30th, as friendly as possible towards myself, but vague and
evasive in respect to the policy of the Cabinet in the present situation.
Not only does he postpone every measure, every indication of his intentions
till after the election and the opening of the National Assembly, which is
very natural, but he gives no hint as to how far his Government will insist
respecting the conditions of peace. It is, of course, impossible for me to
argue the point with him--such a discussion would be unbecoming both on
his part and mine. I understand his reserve, but I can neither accept the
reasons for it nor its results. It is therefore to you that I address my
further observations in support of my letter of January 18th, begging you
to communicate them to Mr. Gladstone, who will quite understand why I do
not address them to himself. I should also be glad to know if he would
object to the publication of his letter of January 30th, and of that which
I am now sending you? For my part I wish this publicity, in both England
and France; but I will not authorise it without his approval.
If this should be agreed on, pray let me know your opinion as to publishing
it in the 'Times.' I am sure that, in this case, Miss Martin would
undertake the translation.
The Journal notes:--
_February 18th_--Pleasant dinner at Mansfields', though Mansfield himself
was carried off by the Prince of Wales.
_26th_.--Dinner at Lord Granville's, to meet the Duc de Broglie, who came
_From M. Guizot_
_Val Richer, March 4th_.--Your sad predictions were well founded; the
painful abscission has been made; we bore it at least with good sense and
dignity. Without discussion or delay, the National Assembly has accepted
the peace imposed upon it; and the population of Paris left the Prussian
corps to parade through one single quarter of the town in solitude and
silence. The Prussians have not seen Paris, and Paris did not go to see the
Prussians. Their triumph had no spectators. Their present policy is one
more example, after so many others, of the insolent and blind folly of
victors who sow the seeds of war at the moment they are making peace. You
can have no idea of the passionate sentiment of sorrow and anger which
fills the soul of France, in all classes and in every part of the country.
It is impossible to say when and under what form the future will mark this
feeling, but it is written. One cannot tire of repeating the last words of
the Chancellor Oxenstiern to his son when starting for the tour through
Europe: 'Ito mi fili et inspice quam parvâ sapientiâ mundus regitur' ...
The Journal continues:--
_March 16th_.--Dinner at home to the Duc de Broglie, the Dartreys, Mintos,
Houghton, and Lady Molesworth.
_April 1st_.--Went to Draycott on a visit to the Cowleys. The Lavalettes
there and the old Duchess of Cleveland. Went on to Bath to try the waters
there. Bath, however, did no good to the gout, of which I had, all this
spring, repeated attacks. Saw Wells Cathedral, Glastonbury, and Longleat.
Over to Bristol, and then back to town on April 15th.
No sooner was the siege of Paris ended and peace signed, than the frightful
insurrection of the Commune broke out in Paris; the city was for many
weeks in complete possession of the mob; Thiers and the army retired on
Versailles, and recommenced the siege of Paris by French troops. The
Archbishop and other hostages were murdered, and at last the city was set
on fire. Nothing even in the First Revolution equalled the madness of this
period. What a curious contrast to the even tenour of London life! I find
in my diaries no trace of these tremendous catastrophes.
_May 1st_.--International Art Exhibition opened. I went in my doctor's
robes and orders; the only time I ever wore them.
_From M. Guizot_
Val Richer, 4 juin.
My dear Sir,--La destruction a atteint son terme, l'oeuvre de
reconstruction commence. Elle sera très difficile, mais je n'en désespère
pas, et j'y prendrai quelque part sans sortir de ma cellule. Quelle vie que
la mienne! Mon plus ancien souvenir politique est d'avoir vu de loin, du
haut d'une terrasse de la petite maison de campagne où ma mère s'était
réfugiée pendant la Terreur, en 1794, les Jacobins poursuivis et assommés
par la réaction contre Robespierre au 9 thermidor. La scène se passait sur
les boulevards de Nismes. J'assiste en 1871, de la campagne aussi, à la
chûte des nouveaux Jacobins, vrais héritiers et élèves de la Terreur. Et
que n'ai-je pas vu, en fait d'événement, dans cet intervalle de 77 ans!
Sur ce je vous dis adieu. Je me porte assez bien, malgré mes 83 ans et ces
spectacles Shakspeariens. La France est, depuis 1789, une immense tragedie
Tout à vous,
Reverting to the Journal:--
Mr. Grote died on June 18th. I attended the funeral in Westminster Abbey on
the 24th. John Mill and Overstone were among the pall-bearers.
At The Club dinner, on June 20th, the Duc d'Aumale took leave of us before
returning to France. There were present: the Lord Chancellor (Hatherley),
Master of the Rolls [Romilly], Duke of Cleveland, Lord Salisbury, Lord
Derby, Sir H. Holland, Dean Stanley, W. Smith, and self.
About this time I was made a Companion of the Order of the Bath. Lord
Ripon, then Lord President, had asked them to make me a K.C.B., but
Gladstone wrote me word that it was a rule that men should pass through the
third grade to arrive at the second. [Footnote: That there was such a rule
has been very fully proved by numerous exceptions.] Arthur Helps and
William Stephenson were made C.B.'s at the same time, and afterwards
K.C.B.'s. I was gazetted a C.B. on June 30th.
The following from Lord Granville refers to a conversation in the House of
Lords on the constitution of the Appellate Court of the Judicial Committee.
The Marquis of Salisbury had said that in his opinion it should be a court
of fixed constitution.
At present it was often difficult to discover who were the judges in the
particular case. He believed the President of the Council in every case
appointed the judges; but, as he understood, it was practically done by
a gentleman for whom all had the greatest respect, Mr. Henry Reeve, the
Registrar. This did not seem a satisfactory state of things for a tribunal
dealing with matters which excited people's passions and feelings to
the highest degree, and on which parties were angrily divided. Nobody
conversant with the matter could harbour the unworthy suspicion that
the Court was ever packed for the trial of a particular case--he had no
apprehensions on that score; but it was because the action and constitution
of the Court should be above all suspicion that he would urge the noble and
learned lord on the woolsack to provide some fixed constitution, so that
the Court should not be constituted afresh for each particular case it had
Lord Granville replied in the sense of his letter to Reeve, except that he
said 'Mr. Reeve invariably consulted _the Lord President_, who, on some
occasions, called a Cabinet Council.' The Lord President at that time was
the Marquis of Ripon. Granville was followed by Lord Cairns, who said:--
He could testify from considerable experience to the way in which Mr. Reeve
performed his duties. The fact was that there was a great unwillingness
to attend, and undergo the great labour and responsibility of hearing
important cases. Mr. Reeve, knowing this, and having an earnest desire
to perform the duties of his office effectively--no public officer could
discharge them better--was in the habit of making himself acquainted with
the arrangements of those who might be expected to attend, with a view--not
to decide who ought to attend to hear particular cases--but as to whose
services were obtainable, in order that some kind of Court might be
constituted.... It ought to be understood that no person had any power of
selecting some and excluding others, and that the Registrar's endeavour to
procure the attendance of individuals had merely arisen from anxiety lest
there should be no quorum. [Footnote: Hansard, 1871, June 22nd, cols.
_From Lord Granville_
16 _Bruton Street, June 23rd_.--I see the report in the 'Times' is
defective. I stated that the Lord President was undoubtedly responsible for
all that you did. I paid a high tribute to your services to the Judicial
Committee (which was cheered by the law lords); I said the difficulty was
often great to collect sufficient members to attend; that you took great
pains, by ascertaining the wishes and possible dates, to ensure this; that
for ordinary meetings of the Court you acted on your own judgement; but
that in all cases where there was a possibility of party or personal
feeling being made a cause of want of confidence in the composition of the
Court, you had always consulted me; and I had, on some occasions, not only
consulted the Home Office, but the Cabinet, in order to do that which would
ensure public confidence. I should not be sorry if you could show that I
was not in the wrong. I was delighted to hear of your C.B. None could be
The Journal records:--
_July 7th_.--I dined with Mrs. Grote; one of the first persons she saw
after Grote's death.
_8th_.--A banquet was given at the Crystal Palace to the members of the
Comédie Française, who had been driven over to London by the siege of Paris
and the Commune.
This 'banquet' was of the nature of a lunch, beginning at two o'clock.
Lord Dufferin was in the chair, supported by Lords Granville, Stanhope,
Powerscourt, Lytton, Houghton, Mr. Disraeli, Tennyson, Macready, and
others. When 'the desire of eating was taken away,' the chairman, speaking
in French, proposed the health of the guests. M. Got responded. Horace
Wigan, too, spoke; and Lord Granville, 'whose fluent command of extempore
French excited general admiration,' gave 'The Health of the Chairman,' and,
with a neat reference to the 'Letters from High Latitudes,' then 14, not
41 years old, said: 'L'accueil que vous avez donné à son discours doit
rassurer Lord Dufferin et lui faire même oublier les succès oratoires
que--Latiniste incomparable, et voué au purisme Cicéronien--il a obtenus
dans les régions plus septentrionales.' To this chaff Lord Dufferin replied
in English: 'Lord Granville has been good enough to allude to what he is
pleased to describe as an oratorical triumph in a distant country; and I
would venture to remind you--and you may take the word of an experienced
person in confirmation of what I am about to say--that when anybody wishes
to make a speech in a foreign language, he will find it much more easy to
do so after dinner than at an early hour in the morning.'
For Reeve this wound up the season. A few days later, July 23rd, he, with
his wife, started for Germany.
THE GREVILLE MEMOIRS
Dr. de Mussy had recommended Reeve to drink the water at Carlsbad, so to
Carlsbad they went, and stayed there twenty-four days. The manner of life
at Carlsbad may be very wholesome, but no one has ever ventured to speak
of it as jovial. The Reeves thought it 'dull enough,' and left it with a
feeling of release, on August 23rd. On the 24th they were at Dresden,
and reached home on September 3rd. And then came a curious reaction; a
disagreeable experience of the Carlsbad treatment. 'Henry,' wrote Mrs.
Reeve a few days later, 'who had been quite well and quite free from gout
all the time, had a tendency thereto on leaving Hamburg, which, on landing
at Gravesend, was a sharp attack in the right hand. He cannot hold a
pen.... His doctor and some fellow-patients all say that after Carlsbad
waters such attacks are frequent, and that they in no way imply that the
waters did not suit.' The Journal goes on:--
_September 16th_.--To Gorhambury [Lord Verulam's] with Christine. On
leaving the house on the 18th to go to the station, the horse in the fly
ran away. We were overturned near the park gates, and had a narrow escape.
Nobody was hurt, and we drove on [in another fly] to Lord Ebury's at Moor
_October 2nd_.--To Scotland on a visit to Moncreiff at Cultoquhey; thence
to Minard (Mr. Pender's) on Loch Fyne; thence to Edinburgh; Ormiston on
the 21st; the John Stanleys there and Lord Neaves. [Footnote: A lord of
justiciary, one of the foremost authorities on criminal law in Scotland,
and for more than forty years a regular contributor of prose and verse to
_Blackwood's Magazine_.] Lady Ruthven to dinner.
_26th_.--To Auchin, and home on the 28th.
A bill had passed at the close of the last session for the appointment of
four paid members of the Privy Council. They were Sir James Colvile, Sir
Barnes Peacock, Sir Montague Smith, and Sir Robert Collier. These judges
began to sit on November 6th of this year. The Court, from that time, sat
continuously. I obtained an additional clerk, and also an addition of 300 £
a year to my own salary, which was fixed at 1,500 £.
Pleasant visit to New Lodge (Van de Weyer's) in November. Shooting at Lithe
Hill in December.
The Prince of Wales's serious illness. He very nearly died on December 6th.
_December 20th_.--The Broglies dined with us, to meet Beust and the
_22nd_.--Mrs. Forester asked us, at my desire, to meet Disraeli and Lady
Beaconsfield, at a small party. There was nobody else there but Lord and
Lady Colville. It was very interesting and agreeable.
1872.--The year opened in Paris, where I had gone after Christmas; the
first time I had been there since the war. M. Thiers was President of the
Republic. I went to Versailles to see him on January 3rd, and found him in
the Préfecture--the room that had been occupied just before by the German
Emperor. M. Lesseps was there that evening, and we returned to Paris
together. He and his friends were apparently very anxious to sell the Suez
Canal. I dined with Thiers on the 6th also.
M. Thiers's conversation on the war, the Commune and the siege was very
interesting. He said to me: 'Certainement je suis pour la République! Sans
la République qu'est-ce que je serais, moi?--bourgeois, Adolphe Thiers.' He
described the withdrawal of the troops from Paris, which was his own act.
Then the siege, which he claims to have directed, the battery of Mouton
Tout, adding, 'Nous avons enterré, en entrant à Paris, vingt mille
Dined at Mme. Mohl's on the 5th with M. de Loménie and M. Chevreuil, who is
The Duc d'Aumale had opened his house in the Faubourg St.-Honoré; reception
_January 8th_.--Dined with the Economists to meet the Emperor of Brazil. I
was presented to him, and made a speech in French on the maintenance of the
commercial treaty, which was applauded. Back to London on the 9th.
Reeve had already proposed to Mr. Longman to publish a volume of his
articles from the 'Edinburgh Review.' He now wrote to him:--
_C.O., January 11th_.--I find that the French articles I wish to collect
and publish amount to _twelve_. I enclose a list of them. They make about
380 pages of the 'Edinburgh Review' form. How much will that make if
printed in a smaller form? The title of the volume is an important matter.
I have thought of 'Royal and Republican France,' or 'A Cycle of French
History;' but I may think of something better. If you will make the
arrangements, I shall be able to supply copy very soon. The introduction
can be printed afterwards, I suppose?
I conclude you will publish on the half-profit plan, though my past
experience of that system does not lead me to regard it as the road to
fortune. Of our military volume about 650 copies were sold, and Chesney and
I made 2 £. 3_s_. 0_d_. apiece!
To this Mr. Longman replied:--
_From Mr. T. Longman_
_January 14th_.--I will have the calculation made of the articles you
mention. I conclude you would wish to print in the usual demy 8vo. form,
like Macaulay's Essays and all the other reprints from the 'E.R.'
The plan of a division of profits has been usual in such republications;
and it seems peculiarly adapted to them, as neither the contributor nor
the publisher can republish separately without the consent of the other.
Whether that plan of publication may be a road to fortune or not depends on
the demand for the book. I had once the satisfaction of paying 20,000 £ on
one year's account, on that principle, to Lord Macaulay. I certainly had
no expectation of a fortune from the republication which produced you 2 £
3_s_. 0_d_.; but had I purchased the right of separate publication for 100
£, I hardly think you would have been satisfied that fortune should have so
favoured you at my expense. It seems to be the fashion to decry that mode
of publication; but there will always be books that can be published on no
other terms, unless at the cost and risk of the author.
_From Lord Westbury_
_Hinton St. George, January 12th._--I am glad to find that you have
returned in safety from Paris with your oratorical honours [Footnote: Of
the French speech in Paris on the 8th.] rich upon you. I do not think that
even Cicero ventured on making an oration in Greek, in Athens; but you have
charmed fastidious Paris with your pure accent and your classic French. I
was in despair when I found your eloquence imputed to another name; but I
heard the error was so generally corrected that you may count on your fame
descending unchallenged to posterity.
I should agree with you that Franco was to be despaired of, if France were
to be considered as subject to ordinary rules. But she is, and has ever
been, so anomalous, that ordinary moral reasoning from history is wholly
inapplicable to her. At present, one would think she had reached the lowest
depth of moral degradation. She might be usefully touched to the quick,
if she could only believe that she is becoming ridiculous in the eyes of
Not that _we_ can expect a much better fate. When the Treaty of Washington
was published, I strove to awaken in the minds of several leading men a
full sense of its folly, and of the calamitous consequences that would be
sure to follow from such an act of foolish, gratuitous submission; but I
made no impression; not even as to the absurdity of introducing new
and ill-considered rules, and giving them a retrospective operation. I
succeeded with no one. I therefore concluded I must be in the wrong. Now,
however, the American indictment bears testimony to the accuracy of my
forebodings. I entreated Lord Granville not to permit the arbitration to go
on upon such a basis, which it was never intended that the reference should
cover or include. It is a fraudulent attempt to extend the reference most
unwarrantably; and if the arbitration is permitted to proceed on such a
claim, the consequences will be most disastrous. It is a sad spectacle to
see a once gallant and high-spirited nation submitting tamely to be thus
bullied. If not firmly protested against, and resisted _in limine_, you
will have an award which England will repudiate with indignation; and war,
the fear of which has made us submit to these indignities, will be sure to
The relative attitudes of England and the United States in 1896 and 1897
have not materially differed from those of 1872. The policy which has been
persistently followed by this country has not yet resulted in war, but it
seems to many now, as it did to Lord Westbury then, extremely likely to do
so. Peace between two such countries can only be assured when it rests on
mutual respect and a community of interests. We may persuade ourselves
that, in the main, our true interests are identical; but the recent
diplomatic correspondence from the States does not tell of much respect.
But as to the point at issue in 1872, Reeve wrote in reply to Lord
Westbury, about January 15th:--
I agree very much with what you say of the Treaty of Washington, and have
never been able to prevail on myself to say a word in its favour. The
result is that the fate and honour of this country are placed in the hands
of a Swiss and a Brazilian referee, neither of whom knows a word of the
English language! Lord Lyons told me so last week in Paris.
The Journal notes:--
_January 22nd_.--Visit to the Archbishop of Canterbury at
Addington--pleasant; but in going up from Croydon on the 23rd, I was nearly
killed by a runaway _hearse_, which struck my cab and knocked it over. I
was not hurt, but two accidents in a year made me nervous. [Footnote: See
ante, p. 201.]
_From Mr. H. F. Chorley_
18 Eaton Place West, February 8th.
My dear Reeve,--I send you what I have done _in re_ Hawthorne. I offer a
character rather than a review, proved by extracts; since had I gone on _in
extenso_ I don't know where I should have stopped. Nothing but my strong
wish to get my subject before the public could have made me carry out my
article, poor as it is, seeing that I have written it half a leaf at a
time, and with a weak, weary hand, the end of which will not impossibly be
palsy. But I think as a character, when duly corrected, my work may not
come out amiss. Ever yours faithfully, HENRY F. CHORLEY.
_Endorsed_--Chorley's last note. He died about a week afterwards [suddenly
on February 16th. The article had apparently not been finished, and was not
From the Journal:--
_January 24th_.--Went to see the Sandhursts at Brighton, but gout came on
worse, and I was ill for some weeks. I presided at The Club, however, on
the 27th, the Thanksgiving Day for the recovery of the Prince of Wales, and
proposed his health.
_March 14th_.--I published a collection of my articles on French history
and affairs under the title of 'Royal and Republican France.'
_From Lord Derby_
23 _St. James's Square, March 15th_.--Many thanks for your book on France.
Most of the articles were familiar to me, but all will bear reading again.
You here show up the weakness of French public life and the faults of
French parties as no one else has done; and I do not recollect to have seen
anywhere else pointed out the intimate connexion between the social state
of modern France--with every old tradition destroyed, and the continuance
of a family, as we understand the word here, rendered impossible--and the
political condition, in which every public man is either fighting for
his own personal interest and nothing else, or for the triumph of his
particular theory of politics, which, if successful, is to be enforced
despotically by all the power of a centralised administration. I have never
thought so badly of the French future as now--no energy except among the
Reds, no power of united action; general apathy even as to the present, and
utter indifference to the future.
The Journal continues:--
_March 31st_.--Came down to Bournemouth for the first time with Hopie and
_April 8th_.--Rode to Hengistbury Head and saw for the first time the
Southbourne estate. Dined with Lord Cairns. Back to town on the 9th.
_17th_.--Dined at Lord Derby's. Sat next Lady Clanricarde, who, _à propos_
of Sir H. Holland's 'Past Life,' talked about her father [Footnote: George
Canning, _d_. 1827.] and his last illness. She said that in truth Holland
saw Canning very little at Chiswick, and that it was Sir Matthew Tierney
who really attended him; and then she told me the following story of
Tierney:--News came from Clumber that the Duke of Newcastle was dangerously
ill with typhus fever. Tierney was sent down as fast as post-horses could
carry him. It was about 1823, in the pre-railway days; and when he arrived
he was informed that the Duke had been dead about two hours. Shocked at
this intelligence, he desired to see the corpse, which was already laid
out. At his first glance he thought he was dead. At the second he doubted
it. At the third he cried out, 'Bring me up a bucket of brandy!' They tore
the clothes off the body and swathed it in a sheet imbibed with brandy, and
then resorted to friction with brandy. In rather more than an hour symptoms
of life began to manifest themselves, and in two hours the Duke was able to
swallow. He recovered, and lived twenty-five years afterwards. Certainly
this triumph over death beats even Dr. Gull's nursing of the Prince of
Wales. It is the myth of Hercules and Alcestis.
_May 4th_.--Visit to Drummond Wolff at Boscombe. A further look at
Southbourne. I chose the site I afterwards purchased.
_8th_.--The King of the Belgians presided at the Literary Fund dinner.
Disraeli made a capital speech.
_18th_.--Visit to Mrs. Grote at Sheire. Called at Albury. Many London
The Bennett case was heard at this time by the Judicial Committee. Long
deliberation on the judgement at the Chancellor's on June 1st. It was
delivered on June 8th. [Footnote: See 'The Bennett Judgement' in _Edinburgh
Review_, October 1872.]
_From Lord Westbury_
_June 1st_,--I am going to Oxford, and fear I may be late at the committee.
There are very important subjects in which we wish to examine you;
especially the danger, if not the illegality, of attempting by new
legislation to create a new Appellate Jurisdiction for the Colonies.
_From Mr. E. Twisleton_
3 Rutland Gate, June 6th
Dear Reeve,--I send you herewith Francis's translation of Pinto on Credit,
together with the original French work of Pinto. The attack on Pombal is in
Francis's concluding observations. Some of the notes are very interesting,
as illustrating the feeling of national superiority among the English, and
of national depression among the French, between 1763 and the American War
of Independence--see pp. 52, 66, 166. My impression is that the French felt
more humiliated during that period than during an equal number of years
after 1814. The loss of Canada and their expulsion from America wounded
their national feelings of pride _then_ nearly as much as the loss of
Alsace and part of Lorraine wounds those feelings now. A hundred years ago
there were very exaggerated ideas, both in England and in France, as to the
strength which a nation derived from colonies.
Yours very truly,
P.S.--In Francis's Fragment of Autobiography he speaks of this translation
as his own; and says that upon accepting his appointment to India he
surrendered all his papers to Stephen Baggs, 'in whose name the translation
had been published.' See 'Memoir of Sir P.F.' vol. i. p. 366.
The Journal notes:--
_June 28th_.--Assembly at Grosvenor House. July 2nd, assembly at Lansdowne
House. July 3rd, Queen's ball--a very brilliant season.
_From Lady Smith_
Lowestoft, July 9th.
Dear Mr. Reeve,--In one of your friendly letters to me, after the decease
of our valued friend Emily Taylor, you kindly hinted that you would
occasionally favour me with a note; but, knowing the demands upon your pen,
I should not have reminded you of this kindness but for an incident which
occurred last evening when my niece, Ina Reeve, came in to me, saying she
had read such a severe and bitter review of your late publication as quite
surprised her. As she brought the 'Saturday Review' with her, she read it
to me, and perhaps, dear friend, you may have read it, and perhaps guess
its author. To me it seems he is not so angry with your books as with
yourself. Mr. Reeve floats uppermost in almost every line, and 'tis you he
hates. I perceive he cannot endure you, and makes use of your books only
to insult you. I hope you will take care how you come in his way, for I am
sure he will do you a mischief. Beware of the evil eye! He talks of your
ignorance of the New Testament. I could not help thinking how little he is
acquainted with its spirit.
I also read with much concern of the treatment by Mr. Ayrton of that
admirable Curator at the Kew Gardens--Dr. Hooker. Cruel it will be to
science and the public if he is driven from the position he is so competent
to fill with good results.
I have read at present only a part of your first volume, which I much
enjoyed. Sir James was in Paris about two or three years before the Great
Revolution began, but the fermentation was beginning. 'Tis time to relieve
you from my imperfect writing, for my sight is not very perfect, and by
candlelight I can neither see to read or write. About two months go I
completed my ninety-ninth year; but I have health and a new source of
happiness in my nephew James and his dear daughter, who are come to reside
at Lowestoft. _She_ is a daily friend to me, a second self; as our taste in
literature, in poetry, and in morals agree. Only think, the Dean of Norwich
sent me his defence of St. Athanasius' Creed!
I am your dear friend,
The next entry in the Journal introduces us to the place--a site on the
Southbourne estate already spoken of--where, two years afterwards, Reeve
built the house in which so much of the last twenty years of his life was
passed. It will be seen that for some time he hesitated between this and
the neighbourhood of Ascot where, in the autumn, he inherited a small
_July 13th_.--To Christchurch, with Parker and Cockerell, [Footnote:
Frederick Pepys Cockerell, one of a family of distinguished architects, and
himself of a high reputation. He died at the age of 45, in 1878.] about the
house at Foxholes.
_17th_.--Dined at Duke of Argyll's. 20th, three days at Strawberry Hill.
27th, party at Aldermaston: Otway, Layards, H. Bruce.
Having taken Loch Gair House for the season, went there by Greenock on
August 2nd. I paid about twelve guineas a week. [Loch Gair--wrote Mrs.
Reeve--is a tiny, land-locked bay on the west shore of Loch Fyne. Park-like
grounds, with a pretty burn rushing down, skirt this loch. There is a
small kitchen garden, and a dairy of six cows. The best fishing is in Loch
Clasken, about a mile and a half west. There is a boat on the loch. The
house is a square structure, three stories high, and with underground
larders, dairy, &c. and attics for servants, so that there is ample
accommodation. I think Henry will enjoy the serene beauty of the place, the
balmy air and fragrant odours, and idleness, delicious because earned by
The Penders being at Minard, we had the benefit of their society and his
yacht. Roland Richardson, Frank Hawkins, Mr. Dempster, the Worsleys, Edmund
Wallace, Fairfax Taylor, Sir A. Grant, the Colebrookes, came to stay
with us; and Colvile. The Derbys and Sir W. Thomson, [Footnote: Now Lord
Kelvin.] Rawlinson, Massey, C. Villiers and the Lowes, staying at Minard.
[Of this time Mrs. Reeve wrote:--The sun is again ruling the day and the
moon the night, to the very great glory of Loch Gair. On Sunday (August
18th) the whole Minard party, seventeen in number, came over to tea, much
to the amusement of Mr. Dempster, to whom we talked of seclusion, and who
did not expect a cabinet minister, a very 'swell' admiral, and sundry fine
ladies. Mr. Dempster's was but a short visit, to our regret; and on Monday
I took him in the dog-cart to meet the 'Iona' at Ardrishaig.]
_October 2nd_.--Left Loch Gair. Visit to Orde's at Kilmory; then to
Invergarry (E. Ellice's) by the Caledonian Canal. Deer shooting. 11th,
to Keir; 16th, to Ormiston; then to Abington--shooting there. To town on
Miss Handley died in October. She left me the Winkfield portion of the
Bracknell estate, which was afterwards confirmed by a decree of the Master
of the Rolls.
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