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sarily be imitated by that of France, as the adherence to the treaty of Milan became imperative on the French government the moment that England stood forward in the cause of civilization and right. At the present day, no sovereign, whose power is in any way subject to the control of popular opinion, can remain behind in the race when his rivals start for the goal of enlightened freedom and the welfare of mankind. The more the number of sovereigns, subject to such control, can be augmented, the better for their peaceably-disposed neighbours. But an instantaneous advantage would result from a line of policy which should establish the freedom of the minor German states from the oppressive leadership of their too-powerful colleagues in the Confederation. This would be the attaching of Switzerland to a body with which it has so many powerful sympathies. The moment the freedom of the Germanic states is proclaimed, and the power of the Frankfort Diet limited to concerting measures of defence against external aggression, in that instant Switzerland has become an honorary member of the league, by the influence of that identity of interests which is so much more powerful in consolidating alliances than the wisdom of statesmen or the calculations of cabinets. This power, so feeble while it stands alone, that it is buffeted about by its mighty neighbours, France and Austria, who have not scrupled to threaten the extermination of its liberties, would at once assume the rank of a powerful member of a powerful confederation, whom it would be bad policy to taunt, because it was secure from injury. Instead of being reduced to defend refugees, at the risk of their independence, the Swiss would then belong to the party whose influence in Europe would thenceforward be such as to make it essential to cultivate their esteem, and therefore wise to treat them with courtesy. But it is not Switzerland alone that would benefit, besides ourselves, by the establishment of a powerful confederation of free states in Germany. Belgium, whose inhabitants are at heart more German than French, would likewise find a support for her newly-acquired and dearly-bought independence. Every country in which a German dialect is spoken would be able to claim the sympathies of the rest; and the

a representation in the Diet through their lord, as duke of Courland*, would form a part and portion of a real and imposing league. The dreams of the conquest of Hanover, with the addition of the Hanse-towns, once dispelled from the brains of Prussian statesmen, the influence of public opinion would regain its importance in Prussia. The Prussians would hail the boon of security against the aggressions of France and Russia as a valuable exchange for distant visions of conquest. The reduction of their army, which is only possible under these circumstances, would throw a fund of industrial resources into the hands of the population, and the true power of that state would begin to show itself, based upon the strong foundation of national prosperity. member of the confederation, Prussia would be then the chief support, instead of acting the part of oppressor, of the liberties and civilization of Germany; and all Europe would hail the tardy realization of the hopes which the proposal for the establishment of a confederation of free Germanic states excited at the Congress of Vienna.

As a

* Under this title the emperor of Russia sought last year to be admitted into the German confederation as a member-nearly at the same moment that he by an imperial ukase compelled the German provinces of Russia on the Baltic to adopt the Russian as their language, and, by his regulations as to mixed marriages, laid the foundation for the extirpation of the Protestant religion in those provinces. The Protestants in those countries are either Lutherans or Calvinists, and have consequently little sympathy to expect from the king of Prussia. Are they to expect any from the British nation ?


1. Recent Measures for the Promotion of Education in Eng

land. Ridgway. Tenth Edition. 1839. 2. Reports of the National Society for Promoting the Education

of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church.

1838 and 1839. 3. A Letter to T. D. Acland, Esq., M.P., on the System of Edu

cation to be established in the Diocesan Schools for the

Middle Classes. By the Rev. R. HUSSEY. 1839. 4. Report of the Exeter Diocesan Board of Education. Ja

nuary, 1839. Exeter. We approach with unaffected diffidence the discussion of a question, which has been embittered with so much political rancour, and mingled with so much pretension and prejudice, since we last devoted some of our pages to a survey of the progress and condition of the education of the lower classes in England. But, notwithstanding the outbreak of violent animosities, and the clamour of party which dins upon the public ear, these present evils are certain signs of the advancement of a good cause. They are in fact a solemn recognition of the national importance of the subject. They are the concomitants of active exertion. They announce the passage of the question from those abstract discussions and philanthropic aspirations in which it lay so long and closely locked, to the field of open debate. The conflict between new systems which seek to found, and existing institutions which seek to maintain, their authority, will not be resolved by the promises of the former or the claims of the latter, but by the practical forces they will bring to bear on the subject. The daily thoughts of men are commonly so far below the idea which they are unconsciously serving, and means occupy so much more of the world's attention than ends, that the extent and importance of principles themselves are rarely discerned till they have been tested by time, and brought by experiment within the ken of ordinary observers. But if there men's controversies--if there were no high ends to be promoted by us for times after us, the drama of life would become a contemptible jest, and we should turn from the strife of public discussion to the pleasures of lettered ease and abstract speculation.

Constituted as we are, both in our individual and our national capacity, it is a necessary consequence of our education and our institutions, that the signal to act should be invariably accompanied by a thousand differences as to the means of action. Parties are so engaged in these disputes that they know. little more of the fate of the main battle than a regiment in the midst of dust and smoke knows of the fate of a campaign. It is a peculiar characteristic of the English people, that they, of all mankind, are most energetic in the attack and defence of questions of detail, and least used to act from general motives on a general survey of the whole question. But this very quality of the English character has imparted a strength to English institutions, which no ingenuity or speculative contrivance could ever have conferred on the productions of the most gifted minds. Nothing springs up in England with the sudden vigour of tropical vegetation ; but while the soil is turned a thousand times about the root, the trunk of our oak continues its sturdy growth.

We look down on the ebullitions of narrow minds, the mis. chief of party, the virulence of polemics, and the coarseness of transient motives with indifference, because our belief in the existence of more enduring and more noble elements amongst us is unshaken : if we have alluded to the existence

these disorders, which force themselves on our notice, it is chiefly to disclaim all sympathy with them-nay, more, to protest against the discouraging construction which some men put on their proximate consequences. In our last number we drew a melancholy picture of abortive exertions and increasing evils, in our notice of the present state of the African Slave-Trade; but we do not for a moment question that the moral assertion of the iniquity of slavery, and the great moral battle fought by the Abolitionists, has raised the tone of national feeling, touched the conscience of England with a deeper sense of her duties, and achieved results of a moral



importance hardly secondary to that main object of the suppression of the Slave-Trade, which is unhappily still so remote. In like manner, the objects of the most enlightened friends of education may be far from their accomplishmentperhaps they will never be completely attained; but already we find cause for rejoicing in the effects of these discussions. Within the last few years, and especially within the year which has just expired, we have seen the revival of a spirit in some of our institutions which gives us the best assurance of their safety, and the best promise of their extension and improvement. We have seen, especially in the Church, symptoms of that best kind of reform, which starts from a return ad principia; and we can pardon much of her jealous hostility to all external interference, in consideration of the knowledge she shows of her position, and the readiness with which she meets the exigencies of it. It is the peculiar characteristic of a country blest with wise institutions, that however they may be overgrown with the rusts of time, they are susceptible of applications, of which their authors—if any can be called the authors of what has grown with our growth-never dreamed.

With particular reference to the Education-question, the position of the State, or rather of the administration in whose hands the exercise of the powers of state reposes, is at present in many respects less favourable than the position of the Church. The Church exists in the country mole suá, and as long as it exists at all, its course of action is prescribed and its powers are determined, not so much by the men who compose it, as by the nature of its constitution. A political board on the contrary, can hardly meet to discuss any question without asking itself whether it exists at all. Its powers may be great to-day; they may be transferred to other hands tomorrow; and the solidity of the measures of statesmen depends, of course, on their sense of their own security. But however unequal and dissimilar may be the resources and elements of the two bodies, we have recently seen them both obey the great necessity of the time, and turn a serious attention to the improvement and extension of schools for the people. We belong to those (if there be any who are con

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