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49nr Janban Cumspoitaf. t We deem it right to state that we do not at all times identify H*90|Des with our correspondent's opinions.] There is a rumour that it is the intention of our good Queen to hold a court at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday next, for the reception of a number of the English nobility. If this rumour be true it certainly gives encouragement to the belief that her Majesty will gradually assume that position which, whether rightly or wrongly, we expect from the Queen of this country. The most desperate opponent of monarchial government cannot affirm that any of the important State duties that appertain to the Queen have been neg- lected—and indeed since the death of the Prince Consort many official labours have fallen on her Majesty from which she was free while he lived, but still the continued seclusion of the Queen has caused a painful feeling in the public mind, and it was with general pleasure therefore, that the long official account of the recent Court at Buckingham Palace was read, many people dwelling with delight on the details of her Majesty's dress, which indicated some approach to the habits of former times. The rumour to which I have alluded, coming after the reception of the foreign ambassadors, &c., has been received with very general satisfaction. The Oicl, which strangely jumbles its presumed facts and its intentional jokes and witticisms, very often succeeds in giving us a pleasant or unpleasant bit of news. It is to be hoped that its announcement or prophecy, whichever it is—that the Prince of Wales will open the Dublin Exhibition in state, — will prove correct. The Irish are good at grumbling (although no people take real misfortune more good humouredly) but they certainly have some cause .to grumble at the continued absence of royalty, even though they have the counterfeit presentment in the shape of a Lord Lieutenant with his sham court. Were the Prince to go in state to open the Exhibition it would mightily please our brothers and sisters of the Emerald Isle, and go somewhat towards reconciling them to the favour which her Majesty shows for Scot- land. Political parties have not yet been thrown into sufficiently direct antagonism to evoke any public ex- citement. In theatrical parlance, first old men and heavy business, appear to go well together, and occupy the stage to the exclusion of the light or the low comedian. Seeing that the latter is generally as- sociated with an indefinite amount of buffoonery, I canno see that this fact is much to be regretted. Some useful measures, however, have been brought under the consideration of the House. Mr. Locke did good seivice when he asked by what authority prisoners on remand were treated with harshness in Newgate. It is undeniably the fact, that this has been the case, even to an exceptional degree in the instance of the brothers Barry; but possibly had they not been in so good a commercial position, we might have heard nothing on the subject in the House of Commons. The debate on Mr. Newdegate's motion concerning Conventual establishments, went far to redeem the dullness of its predecessors. The strong speeches of Messrs. Hennessey, Whalley, and Scully, the second of whom, provoked the laughter of the House, have been, and will be read with interest as showing the arguments adopted by the two great religious parties. It is rumour-ed that a further attempt will be made to bring the subject before the House, and this time in the form of a bill for the authorisation of the inspec- tion of convents. That the whole subject will be kept before the notice of the public, by the ultra-Protestant party, is sufficiently shown by the renewed rea monstrances of the Protestant Alliance, which is a body not likely to be snuffed out, even by Mr. Layard. It is to be hoped that, as the Under-Secretary remarks, the Government are taking all fit and proper measures with regard to the case of Mary Ryan, who was carried off to a Belgium lunatic asylum, for the public mind is by no means satisfied on the matter. A fall of Id. per lb. in cotton, and of between 4 and 5 per cent in the quotations of thtf Confederate loan, followed the receipt of the news of the evacuation of Charleston. Thi3 historic town has been called "the cradle of the rebellion, and the hotbed of slavery pro- pagandism." Without attempting to support or refute this hard language, it is certain that the evacuation of the town and its occupation by the Federals, are rather startling and suggestive facts. There are those who be- lieve that the fall of Charleston is but a prelude to the Confederates succumbing entirely. To prophecy such a result is comparatively easy; to give adequate reasons for such a belief, and at the same time to foreshadow the course of events, is quite another matter. But in any case the most ardent friends of the Federals can scarcely be- lieve that any peace which might be patched up, with- out a radical settlement of the points in dispute, will be lasting. We are apparently on the eve of important events. Would that this long and sanguinary struggle might issue not only in lasting peace, but in freedom to the slave. The world of literature not alone, but society generally, has its attention now directed to th& magnum opus of the Emperor of the French, the Life of Caesar." Not that the world generally now cares much about Julius Csesar, save as an historic personage who looms dimly through the mist of past ages but it is felt that the book is a grand apology for the Napoleonic regime. Caesar is the nominal hero, but Napoleon the First, the central figure—Caesar the prototype, Napoleon the antetype, and the "cno Roman hand of the imperial author, clearly traceable through the whole book, is everywhere devoted to magnify the systeme Napoleon. The hand indeed is the hand of Jacob, but the voice is the voice of Esau. In reading the History of Caesar, therefore, the reader feels that he is "under the shadow of a great name" but under the reality of a greater power for, as had been well observed, the third Napoleon is an active agency in our midst, he has done a great deal more in the past 18 years he may do a great deal more in the next 18 years; and a hundred millions of people are eager to master his ideas, to penetrate his designs. Where will the blow fall next ? He has destroyed two republics. He has humiliated two empires. He has weakened the Temporal Papacy. What next, and Dext ?" The book is indeed remarkable for its authorship, but it is remarkable in itself as being the most elaborate work on one of the foremost men the world has seen. It is remarkable too, inasmuch as it is made so by the ponderous criticisms of the press. When all the leading journals and literary periodicals devote column after column to the book it must needs be considered a great work. But in vain we look for a fair criticism of the work in the columns of the French newspapers they are im- perially, "cabined, cribbed, confined," and dare say nothing, unless in praise. I am Sir Oracle," says the imperial author, and when I ope my mouth let no dog bark." And yet the Emperor Napoleon must sometimes think that full and fair criticism would on the whole be best for himself. His magnificent work would bear any amount of unprejudiced examination, and Napoleon would then have the inestimable advan- tage of knowing what his contemporaries and country- men think of him as an author as well as a sovereign. Literary men, artists and actors—representatives of which classes form so large a proportion of the Garrick Club—are much excited by the rejection by "black- ball of a gentleman proposed by Mr. Charles Dickens, and seconded by Mr. Wilkie Collins; a rejection which has resulted in the retirement of the mover and seeonder. It is not fair to mention the name of. the rejected, as his friends consider the refusal to admit him—arising from no moral cause—would be mis- onstrued. It is said that a gentleman, the son of Mr. James, C.E., who claims to be "the founder of the present railway system," has invented a new mode of transit, whereby passengers may be conveyed 10J miles for Is., at 100 miles an hour, and with more safety and comfort than under the present system. A hundred miles an hour for a shilling It almost takes one's breath away to read it. We now get a telegram from India in eight hours. Suppose we have the Atlantic cable in working order. And then—what next? And meanwhile, shall we be the better for this increased speed? Sup- pose some one improves on Mr. James, and invents something that will take us a 1,000 miles an hour for 6d. ? Eh? Suppose our grandchildren talk of the old railway days, as we now talk of the old coaching days —what then ? Like Brutus, I pause for a reply.

CURIOUS MASQUERADERS.

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LETTER FROM A PENITENT SCHOOL-BOY.

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