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Bloemfontein army.

army. But where was the equipment? We had held the Modder since the battle of that name, fought in the closing days of November, and, during the course of an occupation of over three months, had piled up a great amount of stores. We had held Nauuwpoort on the line, soon to be opened from the south, ever since the opening of hostilities, with the exception of a very few days of withdrawal. If wagons could go from Bloemfontein, three days' journey, and fetch the sick and wounded from Driefontein, could they not have fetched equipment from the Modder ? But Boer raids were to be feared. Then could not the field hospitals have carried equipment across with them on the march with the troops ? But they had no transport of their own. Why not, if the New South Wales hospital had its own transport on the same march from Enslin? If personnel and equipment had been ready south of the Orange River, could they not have marched by road, as we read was done by a portion of the Irish hospital presided over by Sir William Thomson ? Or why not by train, as soon as the line was opened ? Because it must be entirely used to feed the troops. Not so, since it was utilised not only to feed the troops, but to prepare stores for a future advance. If there were twelve trains a day, could not a few trucks have been set apart? Or was it rather that down south there was disorganisation ? No. 8 General Hospital did appearat least its tents did, but apparently not its equipment for a fortnight later; while No. 10 also arrived with its staff, but not its equipment. All these are questions which suggest themselves or have been suggested. Writing in May from Bloemfontein to the 'British Medical Journal,'t Sir William Thomson, surgeon-in-chief to the private Irish hospital, uses these remarkable words : The wagon equipment of

the Irish hospital, fifteen ambulances, has been found of • inestimable advantage to the local medical authorities. No other hospital here, except the Australian, is supplied with such means of transport. We have carried hundreds

of sick and wounded for the various hospitals which have 'no efficient means of conveyance.' No efficient means of conveyance for the sick and wounded of an army corps of the richest and most generous nation that the world has ever seen!

Certain other very instructive or suggestive lessons are

• British Medical Journal, June 2, 1900, p. 1370.
† Ibid., p. 1371.

also to be learnt, as regards medical arrangements in the field, from the experiences and practice of the Colonial Division, organised by the authority of Lord Roberts and Lord Kitchener soon after their arrival at Capetown in January, and placed under the supreme control of BrigadierGeneral Brabant, with Colonel Hartley, V.C., as the principal medical officer. Early in the war the Imperial authorities, being short of the necessary staff, had taken over the volunteer bearer companies of the Cape Medical Staff Corps, and in December were calling for recruits to that body. Nor was this all. Owing to the pressure upon them, they had further absorbed into their organisation a majority of the rank and file of the medical staff, who are regulars, of that fine body, the Cape Mounted Riflemen. Consequently, when orders came to raise the Colonial Division in the Eastern Province, Colonel Hartley found that besides himself and one sergeantmajor there was no medical staff whatsoever in existence. Our well-wishers, however, in that patriotic district clubbed together and subscribed for medicines, ambulances, and medical comforts. Advertisements were issued, and a mysterious and multifarious medley of some eighty persons assembled under the denomination of Brabant's Ambulance, while some fifteen medical officers were chartered, all of whom had practised in the colony and understood the nature of its ailments. On mature consideration, and after experience of the earlier months of the campaign, a departure from the practice of the imperial army was instituted which, as we have arrived upon the subject of bearer companies, it may be well to notice. It should be said that, in order to assist the regimental doctor and regimental stretcher-bearer in a day of battle, a bearer company consisting of three officers and fifty-eight men is attached to every brigade of a corps. It is the business of this company to supply first aid to the wounded, having collected them out of the zone of fire; then, having carried them to the dressing station either by hand or by ambulance, to place them in the ambulances for conveyance to the field hospitals. On a day of battle one sees men carried in, some dying and some already dead, lying on all sides among stained tunics and rifles thrown away. They pass rapidly through the hands of the surgeons and disappear. But as soon as the action is over this large and valuable body of bearers seems to have few or no duties assigned to it. Thus, while the staff of the field hospital may be overworked, the members of the bearer company may be idle till the hour of the next engagement arrives. It accordingly occurred to the organisers of the medical department of the Colonial Division that the only rational way out of this difficulty is to make the bearer companies an integral part of the field hospital, in order that men of the bearer companies might be given other duties than those already described. A day or two after the relief of Kimberley by General French on February 15 the colonial troops had their first engagement at Dordrecht, to be followed by others at Labuschagne's Nek and on the line of the Orange River. In March heavy rains broke out, and fever, diarrhea, and dysentery ran their course among the troops. But they coped with all their difficulties of sick and wounded in practical, if rough and ready, colonial fashion by utilising at every point every assistance that a school-house, a public building, or private aid could supply, making use also of the civil hospital at Queenstown as a base hospital. The next event of medical as well as military importance in their history was the siege of Wepener in April, and again they pulled themselves out of their difficulties by availing themselves of the churches, schools, dwellings, and medical stores of Mafeteng and Maseru. Colonel Hartley followed up these measures later by forming small colonial hospitals as occasion demanded at such places as Thabanchu, Rouxville, and Ficksburg. Are not some of these things written even for our own learning ? Are they not illustrations of the primary principle that an active organisation of stationary hospitals, wherever and whenever it is humanly possible, is the great secret of medical policy in time of war?

Such, then, stated without fear or favour, is the truth. Such also are the lines on which we trust that her Majesty's Government will undertake to remodel the Royal Army Medical Department. The officers of that great service have had to endure the most arduous labours; they have had to battle with all the difficulties of an imperfect organisation. May it be for the last time!

ART. XI.-1. The Third Salisbury Administration, 1895

1900. By H. WHATES. With maps, treaties, and other

diplomatic papers. London : Vacher & Sons, 1900. 2. Liberalism and the Empire. Three Essays by FRANCIS W.

HIRST, GILBERT MURRAY, and J. L. HAMMOND. London:

E. Brimley Johnson, 1900. 3. Address of the Marquis of Salisbury to the Electors of the

United Kingdom. Published in the Daily Papers, Sep

tember 24, 1900. Since household suffrage was accepted as the basis of the

electoral system of the towns eight general elections have taken place, five of them since the extension of that franchise to the whole country; and we have now, therefore, sufficient evidence before us to indicate how far the hopes or the fears of those who took part in the great struggle of 1866 and 1867 have been justified by the event. The genuine terror with which men like Mr. Lowe and the Adullamites regarded the Americanising of the British Constitution, the establishment, as it seemed to them, of the rule of the ignorant and propertyless many over the wiser and better instructed and propertied few, seems to all of us now almost as exaggerated and fantastic as it seemed at the time to the Reformers a generation ago. Property in this country at the present day is at least as safe (we might easily put it higher) as in any other country of the world, or as in our own country at any previous time in its history, Even our country gentlemen, with their long line of

ancestry behind them and their posterity before them,' in spite of the direst predictions, are with us still; and as for the Tory Party, instead of having been extinguished, it claims to have ruled the country, with the exception of a very short interval, for the last fifteen years, and to have at its back at the present time, and in the new Parliament, as it had in the late Parliament, such majorities of the House of Commons as can be compared only with the sweeping Liberal majority which followed the Reform Bill of 1832.

Yet, in truth, our political institutions have been democratised or Americanised, if that expression be preferred. Indeed, it was necessary that they should be, if they were to continue to fit a social condition which circumstances were rendering more and more democratic. No man, who is not deceived by mere party names or party clap-trap, would think of measuring political progress in the last half

century merely by the test of which party prevailed at the polls. When the Conservative party embraced the policy of what used to be called ' the Bright Clauses' in dealing with Irish land, when it made education free, and when it substituted in the government of counties a representative • system for the old privileged administration of local affairs, it was conclusively established that no prejudiced attachment to the ways of the past would prevent Conservative statesmen from leading their countrymen in the paths of political progress according to the exigencies and requirements of their own day.

What, we wonder, would Mr. Lowe have said to the third item of the references at the head of the present article ? How comes it that Lord Salisbury issues an address to the electors of the United Kingdom ? Lord Salisbury is a Peer, and in Mr. Lowe's time, and long afterwards, were a Peer to have requested the electors of any particular constituency to record their votes for any special candidate, the Commons of the Realm would almost have been in arms at the aggression upon their dearest privileges. Even now we take it that, were, say, the Duke of Devonshire in Derbyshire, or Lord Salisbury himself in Herts, to issue an address to the electors of those counties warning them of the danger to their party of abstention from the poll, and urging them to record their votes for the Government candidates, so novel a step would be keenly resented by each constituency, and would produce little benefit locally to the Unionist cause.

It is, however, not chiefly as regards the relation of a Peer to the electorate that Lord Salisbury's action is of interest. It is as Prime Minister that he appeals to whole people in language directly addressed to them; an appeal which, with the exception of his own similar appeal in 1892, is, we believe, in form without precedent. When the Prime Minister has been a member of the House of Commons it has been usual to regard and to describe his address to his own constituency as a manifesto to the country at large. When a Peer is Prime Minister a similar object has been attained in a different way. Thus Lord Beaconsfield's famous letter of 1880 to the Duke of Marlborough, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, was intended as an address to the country, and it was accepted by the public as a manifesto of policy from the head of the Government to the people as a whole. In constitutional theory the Government depends upon the support of Parliament, not on the direct vote of the electoVOL. CXCII. NO. CCCXCIV.

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