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will lose most by its application. The Quarterly Reviewer also accepts the idea of a uniform grant (p. 183), and says that the attempt to graduate the sum allotted to meet the amount previously paid to the school in fees “would be obviously unstatesmanlike, as it would be giving much to those who needed it least and little to those who most required it.” It is a source of satisfaction to find this amount of consensus on one of the practical points necessarily raised in any plan for Parliamentary aid in lieu of fees.
Should it be optional with managers to retain their fees, or to accept the grant? The Quarterly Reviewer concludes that if the grant is accepted the school must be freed throughout, but holds it only just to leave it optional with the managers to make the change or to continue to receive fees,“ provided one important condition is attended to, and that is that every child should have a free school within reach.” The result of this would be, according to the Quarterly Reviewer, that most of the village schools would be free, whilst in towns only some schools need be free. We might agree with this proposition slightly modified. In the rural districts practically all the schools would have to be free. In the towns a few of the schools would be permitted to charge fees. This solution would only afford us a temporary resting-place. There are many towns, especially in Lancashire, where, with the exception of the Roman Catholic schools, nearly all the schools would desire to continue to charge fees. In Preston, Burnley, Stockport, and Birkenhead the average fee, including Catholic schools, is 155. 3d., 16s, iod., 199. 2d. 155. 3d., and if those who want free schools are to have them in these towns the Department will have to judge what schools shall be allowed to retain the fee, what schools shall be made free. It would be very invidious in a town where the demand for free schools would only permit of one school charging a fee for the Department to have to decide whether the high fee'd Church school or Wesleyan school shall go to the wall. Thus, in Stockport, according to the return of the School Attendance Committee for 1890, in the Brentnall-street Wesleyan School 465 scholars out of 904 pay a fee of 6d. and upward. In the Portwood Wesleyan School 337 scholars out of 788 pay 6d. and upward. Mr. Mundella's recent return, Elementary Education, August, 1890, gives for these two Wesleyan schools an average attendance of 1,468, with an income from fees, excluding books, of £1,639, and for St. Thomas's National School, Stockport, an average attendance of 1,335, with an income from fees of £1,541.
Thus the Wesleyan schools have a fee income apart from books of about £ I 25. 4d. per scholar, the Church school an income of £I 3s. Id. per scholar; and freeing these schools would imply a loss in the one case of more than 12s., in the other of more than 13s. per scholar, or about £870 in the case of the Church school, and about £880 in the case of the Wesleyans. As the subscriptions to the Church school were only £22 12s.6d., and to the two Wesleyan schools £3 155. 6d., it is hard to see if these schools were made free how the deficit of income would be met, and the Department would be very reluctant to adjudicate in such a case. No doubt schools with a low fee, such as id. or 2d. per scholar, would be glad of a grant from the Treasury of ios, a head. But if such a grant be made, these schools can no longer be allowed their present meagre curriculum and inadequate staff, which they have excused on the ground of the poverty of their resources.
We may now sum up our conclusions as to the general principles which should be applied as far as possible in the settlement of this question. Schools receiving this additional grant from the State should accept public representative management to such an extent that the power of appointing and removing the teachers should belong to the representatives of the community. Schools accepting the Government grant must be free throughout, and no charge should be permitted for books, school material, &c. All public elementary schools must be free unless the Education Department expressly sanction a fee to be approved by them, where there is an ample supply of free school accommodation for all who demand it. The Parliamentary grant in lieu of fees should not exceed the average fee collected throughout the country. The Department should require an increased standard of efficiency in premises, staff, and curriculum above the minimum now accepted as sufficient.
E. LYULPH STANLEY.
SHAKESPEARE'S IGNORANCE ?
MONG the curiosities and anachronisms with which the
Winter's Tale abounds, the puzzling “Coast of Bohemia' has ever exercised critics and commentators. Some have seen in the introduction of Bohemia as a seaboard proof of Shakespeare's lack of culture, of his ignorance, without considering that an error of this kind could hardly escape being brought to his notice when the play was performed, and that it was very easy to rectify. All he had to do, for instance—the suggestion is not new—was simply to substitute Bithynia for Bohemia. Others, again, think the poet was doubtless well aware of the blunder, but chose to leave it uncorrected because in the case of a purely fictitious piece, which deals with the realm of myth and the age of fable, one does not look for strict conformity to fact.
A third group, lastly, foremost among them Simrock, have pointed to Pandosto, or the Triumph of Time, a romance of Robert Greene's, as the source whence Shakespeare's Winter's Tale was drawn. That very popular story, of which the editions since 1588 form a long series, and which, after the artificial fashion of its day,
a presents a medley of myth and pastoral romance, begins with the words: “Before Christianity had appeared in the world, there reigned in Bohemia a King called Pandosto.” Bohemia, then, was already established in people's minds as the scene of the transaction, having from the outset been designated as such by Greene. Now the opening of any ready-made narrative becomes for the adapter who takes it in hand a standpoint he is loth to shift. It is the part sure to fix itself firmest in the memory of a reader or hearer, and where deviation would threaten most to provoke dispute. This seems a not unlikely reason why Shakespeare, who altered every
proper name that occurs in Greene, may have thought well, nevertheless, to retain that of Bohemia.
But all this fails to solve the problem of the “coast of Bohemia,” and merely pushes it a stage further back—from the drama to the
Simrock is of opinion that although certain legendary features are interwoven with Greene's story-for example, the exposure and subsequent finding of the child—yet in the main the subject is an invention of his own and does not rest upon tradition. But although we do not know of a traditional foundation, it may nevertheless exist.
Tales of a Romance origin, which before and during Shakespeare's time had an extensive circulation in England, and were the wellspring of numerous dramatic and epic productions, cover a wide field, which is far, as yet, from having been thoroughly explored. Nor has the literature of fiction which grew up in England under this influence been tracked to its ultimate sources. Thus it was not until the accidental discovery of a copy of Greene's Pandosto, bearing date 1588, that a long current assumption was dispelled, which had affiliated the story to Shakespeare's play. The circumstance that the most important alteration devised by Shakespeare —the preservation of Hermione (whom Greene kills off in good earnest)-vividly recalls the rescue and recovery of Lucina in the story Apollonius of Tyre, whence Shakespeare obtained the plot of his Pericles, Prince of Tyre, will hardly convert many to the view taken by Simrock, that the poet was at no pains to do more than reproduce in the fate of Hermione that of Lucina. Indeed, if once we stray into the region of speculation, the very fact of a semblance of repetition would favour the idea that here, as elsewhere, Shakespeare's creative fancy yielded to a tradition handed down from some other and older source than Greene. The search for such a remoter source by no means looks a hopeless enterprise, and even slight indications may in some measure serve as finger-posts.
On this account I venture to offer a small contribution towards the solution of the vexed question from which we started. My studies for a recently published volume, The History of Sugar, having led me to consult extremely learned work by R. Röhrichts—German Pilgrim Journeyings in the Middle Ages-I
came upon a passage that bears on our geographical dilemma. It is borrowed, the author kindly informs me, from Tschamser's Annals of the Barefooted Friars of Thann, and records that “in 1481 fourteen pilgrims returned from their pilgrimage after having been attacked by pirates, from whom in the end they luckily contrived to escape; they had landed somewhere about Bohemia' and they kept their promise to the Church of St. Theobald at Thann by a votive offering of solb. of beeswax.” So here again we find ourselves confronted by the "coast of Bohemia,” but are not left in the dark as before, for after the word Bohemia we read in parenthesis, “ hereby is meant Apulia.” This narrative, all the more telling because the simplicity and preciseness of the chronicle exclude the possibility of confusion or mistake, suggests the inference that there must have been a time, a time, too, not so very distant from the age of Greene and Shakespeare, when the southeastern seaboard of Italy was known by the name of Bohemia. Now, if we provisionally take the correctness of this inference for granted, and if we try to interpret the “ Bohemia ” of the Winter's Tale and of Pandosto by its light, we shall find that the explanation throughout dovetails just as we could wish with the given circumstances.
A favourable wind swiftly bears King Egistus home to Sicily; a storm of two days' duration blows the little craft of Faunia (Perdita) from Bohemia to Sicily; a three-days-long hurricane lands the lovers, who have fled from Sicily, on the Bohemian shore, where they first set foot in a village at some little distance from the capital ; Bohemian traders, who travel to Sicily, betray to Egistus the whereabouts of the young couple, and it takes the Royal ambassadors three days to sail from Bohemia to Sicily.
It might seem a weak spot in the argument that Dorastus (Florizel), wishing to take refuge in Italy with Faunia (Perdita), deems his purpose thwarted when it turns out they have landed in Apulia. But there is no real discrepancy here. Evidently “ Italy” stands for the coast of the peninsula opposite to Sicily and most speedily attainable from it; and in reference to Apulia, moreover, Italy is habitually spoken of as a “foreign country.” This stumbling block counts for no more than the embassy to the Isle of Delphos in