« ForrigeFortsett »
Madame une telle; the wife of Monsieur un tel, exclusiveness are gone by in England; baron et banquier.'— Trollope, vol. ii. pp. 215, 216.
and though it is obviously impossible to At least, however, they are free from prevent any given number of persons morgue in their own circles, when every from congregating and attempting to rebanking plebeian animal, that might come establish an oligarchy, we are quite sure between the wind and their nobility, is that the attempt would be ineffectual, and shut out. Alas! those who indulge in that the sense of their importance would such illusions need only turn to Mrs. Trol- extend very little beyond the set. 'I lope's chapter on La Crème—an inner cir- banish you from Sinope— ' And I concle of exclusives who hold themselves demn you to stay in it.' ineffably superior to the rest.
Mrs. Trollope says, that'an almost preA lady of very noble birth and large ternatural exaltation of the voice into a fortune tells an acquaintance of Mrs. sharp shrill scream in addressing each Trollope's that she would gladly pay one other,' is the great external symbol of the third of her income to ensure her only clique, to which the ladies appear to atdaughter admission to La Crème. Ano- tach the highest importance ; yet in the ther, similarly situated, makes the author- teeth of this and her other revealings she ess her confidante :
declares, «« I would consent,” said she, almost with tears in “In no society can there be found a tone more enher eyes,—“I would consent to do anything that tirely and beautifully devoid of affectation than in that could be proposed to me, could I at once see my of Vienna.'-vol. ii. p. 288. daughters de la crême. Ah! c'est impossible
At the same time we think it proper to pour une étrangère d'imaginer ce que c'est!"-vol. ii. p. 284.
declare that our comments are directed An · animated clever young man' of the rather against Mrs. Trollope's description set asks “a lovely and high-born damsel, of this society than the society itself: we not belonging to it, to dance. Three mid cannot allow a false standard, injurious to dle-aged married dancing ladies, crême de our own countrymen and countrywomen,
, la crême, rush upon
to be set up; but our own conviction is,
that the Viennese nobility are really dis"" Have you asked the Countess **** de **** to tinguished by that high-bred ease and indance ?" inquired one of them. “Yes, I have!" dependence of demeanour which their pewas the bold reply. “ You positively must not dance with her!" cried the three creamy fair ones in a
culiar position is so well adapted to conbreath—" at least, if you do, you will cease to be one fer; and we suspect that Mrs. Trollope of us."
has been the subject of a mystification in ““What am I to say to her ?” “Say to her!" ex
more instances than one. For example: claimed one of the trio,-- a short round lady of thirtysix, pitted with the small-pox, and of very doubtful
'A young lady, who for the first time in her life credit of any kind, excepting crême credit—"What was enjoying the honour of dancing in the presence are you to say to her ?—say that you are engaged to of the empress, but who had not been elected crème, dance with me.” The young man looked enchanted in the thoughtless and undiscriminating gaiety of her of course, muttered something about a mistake to heart presented her outstretched hands to a gentlethe fair young girl, and the next moment felt himself man who was. in possession of the full-blown honour and glory of He stared at her for a moment in unmeasured spinning round the room with one of the ugliest wo-, amazement, and then dropped his eyes, and remained men in it.'-vol. ii. pp. 285, 286.
motionless as a petrified statue. The poor blushing The very same thing happened a few girl turned to a second, but for her sins, poor child
he too was crême of crême. years since at a watering-place in the west
Moi!” he muttered with a sort of hysteric laugh, of England. The gentleman was a half- and, turning away, sheltered himself in earnest conpay lieutenant, the lady the curate's versation with the lady of the clique who stood next
to him.'--vol. ii. p. 286. daughter, and the cream' was principally composed of the families of two broken- We shall have her next mistaking the down baronets, a lieutenant-colonel on dos-à-dos figure in a quadrille for conhalf-pay, a retired wine-merchant, and an tempt. The dance in question was the ex-apothecary who had dubbed himself cotillon; and the supposed coldness or M. D. In most of our provincial towns rudeness of the cavalier a piece of playful the same absurdities are rife: even the coquetry. Her other dancing story is devoted district of Bloomsbury has its open to an obvious objection. On the cream : and so all-pervading is the taste continent everybody dances with everyfor such distinctions, that we fear it is in body, without regard to rank or the cere the very nature of mankind to try and in mony of an introduction ; but the actrench themselves within the ideal circle quaintanceship ends with the dance. No of a caste. But the decline of Almack's objection therefore could be made to a is a clear proof that the palmy days of man's dancing with a girl on the ground VOL. LXV.
pp. 315, 316.
of her not belonging to his set; for the forgiven now, both for the sake of the words, which
to my mind have much wisdom in them, as well as be simple reason that it would mean nothing.
cause the speaker is one of those who must submit The chief defect in Mrs. Trollope's ad- to have what they atter remembered. mirable book on America was a tendency While talking of some of the strange blunders that to mistake peculiarities of language and had occasionally been made by politicians, he said, as manners, common to every country in a he conversed with me in French), “I believe that given state of civilisation, for national the science of governinent might be reduced to prin
She has been guilty of the same ciples as certain as those of chemistry, if men, instead error here:
of theorising, would only take the trouble patiently
to observe the uniform results of similar combinations You must not, however, imagine that, because of circumstances." -vol. ii. pp. 10. 11. there is much of aristocratic exclusiveness here, the society is afflicted by the mildew of ceremonious There is a fatality about Mrs. Trollope stateliness. You could not adopt an opinion more in this book. Her descriptions, as well as foreign to the truth. The general tone, on the corn: her theories, are almost invariably conmember anywhere. All the ladies address each other tradicted by her facts; and if Lawrence's by their Christian names; and you may pass evening portrait had not familiarised us with the after evening, surrounded by princesses, countesses, prince's regular, expressive, finely-chisel&c., without ever hearing any other appellations than led and genuinely aristocratic face, we “Therese," " Flora,” “ Laura,” or Pepé." '- vol. ii.
should expect, after her flattering sketch, The simplicity of this remark reminds to see a dumpy, square-featured, vulgarus of the traveller who expressed his
looking man. If the above be a fair spetonishment at finding that even the little cimen of his colloquial excellence or pochildren in France spoke French. Mrs. both is over : but it is quite impossible
litical sagacity, our illusion regarding Trollope may depend upon it that English that he could have recommended governduchesses and countesses are in all these
We would as particulars exceedingly like their sisters ing men in this manner. of Vienna. It is recorded indeed, by an
soon credit his telling her that the best American traveller, with wonder near akin mode of killing fleas is to take them by to Mrs. Trollope's, that on the most splen- down their throats, as lately recommend
the nape of the neck and pour prussic acid did day of the Eglintoun tournament the Queen of Beauty, on her throne and in ed in the Charivari. “Instead of theoristhe very height of her magnificence, was
ing, observe the uniform results of similar distinctly called “Georgy' by a lady' who combinations ;' and then do, what ?—why had not even the excuse of relationship Mrs. Trollope does not, that combinations
theorise! Prince Metternich knows, if for the audacity.' Far the most prominent figure in the
of circumstances never are similar, any
more than human faces are alike. He is social group is Prince Metternich ; and
very last man in Europe to entertain tune to be honoured with a great deal of such doctrines; yet she coolly, though we his society. The scene of her first inter
believe unconsciously, fixes on him the view is the English ambassador’s :
very worst conceits of a Bentham or a
Sièyes. Bentham's proposal for reducing ‘At some word or signal given, Sir Frederick the credibility of witnesses to a science Lamb left the room and returned with a very lovely woman on his arm, followed by a gentleman whom was based on the same fallacy; and Sièyes the least observant eye that ever served to gnard actually supposed himself to have effected its master 'gainst a post” could not mistake for an or- what Prince Metternich is represented dinary mortal. I had expected to see not only a ds. propounding as a novelty. One day,' being so on his brow, and neither the seeing nor hear- says Dumont, 'after breakfasting with Ní. ing Prince Metternich can ever have disappointed de Talleyrand, we were walking together any one; his whole person, countenance, and de- in the Tuileries : the Abbé Sièyes was meanour are indicative of high station, commanding more communicative than usual; he was intellect, and very finished elegance. He led me to dinner, and I had the advantage of his conversation
in a fit of familiarity and openness, and, while it lasted; for the table was not only as round, after speaking of many of his works, his but as large as King Arthur's, rendering general con- studies, and his manuscripts, he made this versation of course impossible. Were I to tell you remark, which struck me:-“La politique what I thought of the quality of his conversation, you might perhaps say that my admiration was the natu- est une science que je crois avoir achevée.' ral result of listening to opinions I approved: so I If he had but measured its forms—if he will for the present enjoy the recollection of all I had but conceived the extent and difficulheard in silence. Nevertheless, there was one observation that I am tempted to record, despite my ty of a complete system of legislation—he usually firm resolution of never repeating " table would not have held this language: pretalk" unless the names be withdrawn: but i must be sumption in this line, as in all others, is the surest sign of ignorance.'*
Second Reading of a Bill for the better acquit Prince Metternich of any presump
Administration of Justice in the Court tion of the sort.
of Chancery. Ibid. 1836. In Mrs. Trollope's grand political con- 3. Letter to Viscount Melbourne on the clusion we perfectly agree. Though such
Court of Chancery, and the appellate Jua state of things may do very well for risdiction of the House of Lords. By A. Austria, it does not follow that it would do Lynch, Esq., M.P. 1836. very well, or do at all, for England ; and 4. Suggestions for a Reform of the Prowe are by no means anxious to barter our ceedings in Chancery. By W. A. Garbirthright for a mess of pottage, even with ratt, M.A., Barrister. 1837. the best possible securities for being al. 5. On the Unsatisfactory State of the Court lowed to finish it in peace. The epicure- of Chancery. By G. Spence, Esq., Q. an philosophy is an exceedingly pleasant C. 1839. philosophy, but it is not the most elevat- 6. First Address to the Public on the Court ing-Epicuri de grege porcus-and life of Chancery. By the Same.
By the Same. 1839. has higher objects than the gratification 7. Second Address. 1839. of the senses, or the calm, unexciting, un. ambitious enjoyments of society. Milton, The works whose titles we have transcribBacon, Shakspeare, Dante, Newton-ed would seem to demonstrate, if they do. these are a few of the products of popular nothing else, the existence of a general institutions and stirring times. Would it conviction amongst well-informed and be better for the world if they had been able men, that considerable reforms are clipped or pressed down to the dead level required in our courts of equity, and that of mediocrity ?
the time is fast approaching when some Let Austria, then, plume herself as attempt to carry them into effect must be much and as long as she pleases on her made by the legislature. Indeed one tranqnillity-we have no wish to part with should think that it was only necessary to our juries, our parliaments, our public lay the actual state of the matter before meetings, and our press, dearly as we the intelligent people of this country, in have been obliged to pay for some of order to ensure success to almost any them since Reform ministries began tam- measure for curing or even mitigating the pering with the machinery; nay, despite evils which exist. Yet we are by no of Whiggery and Chartism, we do not means confident that this will be the case; hesitate to say that even revolutionary for it is one of the remarkable features of disturbances and disturbers have their our times, that whilst men are in a state of use. In times of public corruption (to feverish anxiety for alteration, they disborrow the beautiful simile of Lord Ers- regard those real, practical improvements, kine), they act like the winds, lashing be- which are to the people the weightier fore them the lazy elements, which, with matters of the law,' busying themselves out the tempest, would stagnate into pes- about the mint, anise, and cummin' of tilence; in times of factitious excitement political measures, the only object of and unhealthy craving like the present (to which is to aggrandise one party at the borrow the equally beautiful illustration expense of the other. And even in those of Lord Mansfield), the shock may serve institutions of the country to which their to rouse the better part of the nation out attention is directed, they seem, perverseof their lethargy, and bring the mad part ly enough, to select such as, upon the back to their senses, as men intoxicated whole, best effect their original purposes, are sometimes stunned into sobriety. whilst they utterly neglect those which
require, and are really susceptible of much improvement. We believe that this disease of the body politic arises principally from the neglect of that which ought to
be the cardinal maxim"in all reforms, viz. Art. IX.--1. Onthe Present unsettled Con. never to make any alteration at all till
dition of the Law and its Administration. you are not only prepared, first, to show By John Miller, Esq., Q. C., of Lin- defects in the existing system requiring
coln's-Inn. London, 8vo. 1839. amendment; but, secondly, also to pro2. Substance of a Speech by Henry Lord duce another plan with its details arranged, Langdale, in the House of Lords, on the which, if carried into effect, will be liable
to fewer objections, and be a material im• Souvenirs sur Mirabcau, fchap. iii. provement upon the old one. The reformers of our day take only the first and gether to remove. And we now proceed more easy branch of the proposition. to the consideration of these remedies. They begin, and, ordinarily speaking, Those of our readers who take an inthey succeed well enough in showing de- terest in this subject are aware that in the fects in our institutions—for what hu- year 1824, King George IV. was advised man invention is free from them ?-but to issue a Commission for inquiry into they seldom touch upon the second part some of these matters. Those commisof it, or, if they do, it is only to demon- sioners made a report in 1826 ; and that strate, by lamentable failure, their capacity report, which undoubtedly contained many for destruction, and their total incapacity useful suggestions, was afterwards acted for producing anything rational in the upon by Lord Chancellor Lyndhurst's place of what they would destroy. We orders, in 1828 ; by the Acts of Parliapropose in the present article to bind our- ment i Wm. IV. c. 36, 2 Wm. IV. c. 58, selves by this test, and in doing so we and 3 and 4 Wm. IV. c. 94, and subsehope to point out, not, indeed, a plan with quently by Lord Chancellor Brougham's all its details, but a course by which the orders of December, 1833. details of a plan can be arranged, so as to But that Commission laboured under accomplish at all events a better system of the capital defect that it was of too limitpractice in our equity courts.
ed a nature to be capable of attacking the The two great defects in these courts real evils of the court. It was pointed to are expense and delay; both great, and the practice of the court alone, and to the both increasing. It is difficult to present question whether any part of the business these properly and candidly to the con- of equity could be properly transferred to sideration of the public. Many of the other tribunals. It had no authority to complaints are made by persons who are amend the pleadings or the mode of takreally ignorant of the true cause, although ing evidence, or the delays arising from they are acutely sensible of the incon- the introduction of unnecessary parties, venience, and they often, in consequence, or those occasioned by intermediate appropose remedies, which, if acted upon, peals and rehearsings. Its real effect, we would be far worse than the disease. believe, has been somewhat to facilitate Lord Langdale well observes that delay the arrival of the cause at the stage of cannot always be avoided, and that it is not being set down for hearing ; and this may always to be imputed to the court in which perhaps account for the increased and init occurs. There are, he says, cases in creasing arrears in the paper of causes which unnecessary delay to a great extent before the present judges, as compared may be imputed to the neglect or miscon- with their predecessors. But this Comduct of the parties or their agents. There mission which was a failure, may serve at are also cases in which the truth cannot be least to show how inefficient any plan of investigated and ascertained without the reform in courts of equity must be which consumption of a great deal of time- shall not give proportionate efficiency to cases of long pending accounts—of intri- each part of the court. If you
facilitate cate transactions-cases of complicated the preliminary stages of the cause, and and artfully concealed fraud--cases of trust, do not provide additional facilities for the execution or breach of which may ex- hearing it, you only alter the place where tend over a long series of years. Now all the delay occurs--without remedying the these are cases of delay; and these are the delay itself
. And again, if you increase cases above all others which are generally the judicial establishment ever so much, found to be the subject of declamatory leaving the Masters' offices in their preattacks on the Court of Chancery, and sent state, you will do nothing towards cited as proofs of unnecessary delay there. the real object--which ought to be the But admitting most fully, as we do, the termination of the suit, and the adjusttruth and force of these observations, we ment of the rights of the respective par. believe it will still be found--and the ties, within a reasonable time, and at a noble judge whose opinion we have cited reasonable expense. will, we are quite sure, be the first to allow The reform of the common law was —that there are real and effective causes conducted on different principles; and it of both expense and delay -- unnecessary is important to bring these into contrast, delay and unreasonable expense, we mean that it may be seen whether the applica--existing in our courts of equity, which tion of them to the courts of equity would it is in the power of the legislature to di- not be productive of much advantage. minish, and, as to some of them, alto. The commissioners of common law were empowered "to inquire into the course gratitude of those who are now ready to of proceeding in actions from the first perish.' process and commencement to the termi- Upon these subjects, the present Masnation thereof, and into the process, prac- ter of the Rolls, in his evidence before tice, pleading, and other matters connect the Chancery Commissioners, says, this ed therewith, and to inquire whether any Unnecessary delay, vexation, and exand what parts thereof might be conve. pense, may be ascribed to the established niently and beneficially discontinued, al practice of the court, to the established tered, or improved; and what, if any, system of pleading, to the established alterations, amendments, or improve. mode of obtaining evidence. He adds, ments, might be beneficially made there. in another place, an instance showing the in, and how the same might be best car. evil of making all persons interested
parried into effect, and whether and in what ties to the cause ;—that on one occasion, manner the despatch of the general busi. where fifty or sixty persons were inteness in the said courts might be expe. rested, and were all made parties to the dited.”
suit, the case, after an ineffectual litigaThe original commissioners made three tion of some years, was obliged to be setreports, and many of their suggestions tled by a private arrangement on account were carried into effect by Lord Tenter- of the difficulty of bringing it to a hearden's bills. The process of the courts was ing. Persons not acquainted with the made uniform and simple—the practice practice of the court will hardly believe regulated and made uniform by orders of this; but it is easily explained. The the judges—the necessity for bills of in- death of each party causes the suit to terpleader and for commissions to exam- abate, till the representative of the deine witnesses almost put an end to—and ceased becomes a party in his stead. lastly, a power, limited as to time and Now suppose the cause set down for degree, was given to the judges by act of hearing-a death occurs-all proceedings parliament for amending the pleadings, are thereupon stayed-he leaves an exewhich has been acted upon greatly to the cutor-it becomes necessary to prove the advantage of the suitors, and which, hav- will in the Ecclesiastical Court; when ing expired by efflux of time, was last this has been done, a supplemental bill year renewed to them for five years becomes necessary to make this executor longer, and will probably, as it undoubt- a party ; he must put in his answer-and edly should, be made perpetual at some by the time all this has been accomplishfuture period.
ed, some other person dies, and the saine We believe that much might be done process has to be renewed :—the Court in the Court of Chancery if such a plan of Chancery thus realizing the punishwere applied to it. Very few persons, ment of Sisyphus in the infernal region we believe, doubt that the pleadings in to its unhappy suitors, who roll the cause equity may be shortened ; or that the up the hill of the chancellor's paper with mode of taking evidence is most expen- labour and sorrow, and just as they arrive sive and utterly ineffective; or that the within sight of his lordship’s wig, down rule requiring all persons, however re- goes the stone rattling away to the botmotely interested, to be made parties to tom of the precipice. According to our a bill—the most fertile source of delay parliamentary returns, the average morand expense in the whole proceeding tality in England amounts annually to at may be advantageously modified ; or that least one in fifty persons ; so that in a the inconvenience and waste of time and suit in which there are fifty persons enexpense arising from interlocutory ap- gaged as parties, it is almost impossible peals should at least be restrained by to arrive at a decision. some additional regulations.* It would What, then, is the practical conclusion be something to remedy these evils; and which we would draw from all this? if nothing more were done, the commis- Simply this, that it is expedient to give a sioners would entitle themselves to the power, not merely of deliberation, but of
legislation, to some body of persons on * In the case of Townsend v. Champernoune in these and other such subjects. And we the Exchequer, there were three interlocutory ap. think, upon the whole, that it would be peals to the House of Lords between the original de. best to follow the precedent already made, crec in 1821, and the hearing of the cause on fur and to vest in the Lord Chancellor, the ther directions in 1839. It is now compromised, or else there would undoubtedly have been a fourth Master of the Rolls, the Vice-Chancellor, appcal.
the Lord Chief Baron, the Equity Baron