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EPITOME OF NEWS, BRITISH AND FOREIGN. Her Majesty the Queen has conferred the honour of knighthood on Mr. Francis Ronalds. Roupell, the ex-M.P.. is now an assistant to the surgecn in the Portland Prison Infirmary. A street crowd in London was recently greatly amused when the carriages of a wedding-party were blocked in a narrow street by two loads of cradles and baby waggons. The New York papers express a hope that the vic- torious Cambridge crew will visit the United States and race against the Harvard Crew. The Irish emigration season has now fairly set in, and large numbers of emigrants are leaving Queenstown for the United States by every steamer. Miss Morgan, an English lady, has proceeded to the degree of M.D. in the Uaiversity of Zurich. Her thesis was read before an audience of over tour hundred people, and was received with loud applause. "Wanted, by a gentleman, a housekeeper, with a view to matrimony, about 25 enclose carte.—Address Ran- dolph, Post Office, Sheffield."—Advertisement in Manchester Examiner. A staff assistant surgeon on board her Majesty's ship Royal Adelaide has been sentenced by a court-martial at Devonport to be dismissed from his ship and to lose two years' seniority for drunkenness while on duty. A French bishop, in a sermon, recently ministered a phillippic to crinoline wearers. Let women beware," said he, while putting on their profuse and expansive attire, how narrow are the gates of Paradise." The county of Cambridge has dismissed all its pro- fessional inspectors, and placed the whole inspection of cattle in the county in the hands of the police. Rear-Admiral Dacres, the chief constable of the county, has been ap- pointed chief cattle inspector. Accounts have been received at Des Moines, Iowa. that twelve men were frozen to death in the north. western portion of the State during the severe snowstorm of the 15th inst. Six others were missing, who were supposed to have also perished. The Scotsman understands that the letter to Mr. Gladstone, urging that the Government should take up, dur- ing the present session, the question of the ballot, has been signed by upwards of two hundred members of the House of Commons. It appears that cattle diseases have greatly de creased in intensity in Norfolk. The official returns made up to Monday show that last week there were only teven cases of pleuro pneumonia, and twenty two cases of foot- and-mouth disease throughout the county. The corporation of Beverley have determined to oppose the bill for the disfranchisement of the borough, and the Parliamentary Committee of the Corporation have been authorized to take the necessary steps for the purpose. A man named Cockell, described as a drysalter, committed suicide on Friday last; in Regent's Park, London, by taking a dose of poison. It was stated at the inquest that deceased had recently suffered from pecuniary difficulties, and a verdict of suicide while labouring under temporary insanity was returned. The Chancellor of the Exchequer refrained till the last moment on Monday evening from telling his hearers that he proposed to absorb the greater part of his surplus, exceeding tour millions, in reducing the Income Tax by a penny in the pound, and in taking 011 half the Sugar Duties." —The Times. A conference of the papermakers of Lancashire, Cheshire, and other counties, was held in Manchester, last week, at which it was resolved to raise the price of all k inds of paper 10 per cent. This step, they say, is rendered neces- sary by the increase which has taken place in the cost of raw material. Prince Christian presided, on Saturday evening, at the dinner on behalf of the Royal Society of Musicians of Great Britain, at the Freemasons' Tavern, London. It was stated that during last season over AS, 000 were expended in carrying out the objects of the society, which has funded property to the amount of £70,000. About a thousand colliers in the Rhondda Valley have struck work. By this step eight pits are temporarily stopped, and the result will prove very disastrous to the locality in which the strike has occurred. The cause of the cessation of work is the refusal of the masters to grant the required advance of 10 per cent before the 1st of May. The assignees of Beniamin Higgs, late clerk in the service of the Great Central Gas Company, and who it will be remembered absconded from London some moutha ago, have succeded in realising upwards of £2,000, and there are hopes that the creditors will ultimately be paid in full. The Gas Company, however, claim to prove against the estate for £71,000, the amount of Higgs's defalcations, and this has not yet been disposed of. Sir Henry Rawlinson was one of the witnesses examined on Monday before the Diplomatic Service Com- mittee. He entered into detail with regard to the necessity of making presents to, and otherwise obtaining influence over despotic rulers in the East, which he remarked was not understood in Downlng-street. In Sir Henry's opinion the service in Persia sheuld be under the control of the Indian office. The Gaviois says that the difference between the ex- Queen of Spain and her husband has been settled, according to the Emperor's suggestion, without recourse to the legal tribunals. Don Francis d'Assizes demanded that the com- mon fortune should be divided; but his demand was not granted by the arbitrators, and he has only obtained a pen- sion of 200,000 francs, which is the amounteettled upon him under the marriage contract. The children's portion Is to be placed beyond reach of every kind of accident." The share of the Prince of the Astnrias appears to amount to 4,00(^000 fraucs. The separation de corps et de biens having been thus decreed, Don Francis has already taken bachelor's apart ments in the Rue des Ecurles d'Artois. A paper written by Major Montgomerie, R. E., was read at the Geographical Society in London, on Monday evening. The essay stated that a Pundit who had been trained to explore the table lands of Thibit had discovered there prolific gold mines, and vast plains of soda and salt. Sir Roderick Murchison, in expressing his praise of the paper, said enough had been said in it to cause the starting of two or three public companies within the week. Mr. Gladstone, he added, had lately remarked that tbe labours of the Geographical Society would shortly come to an end. there were no more worlds to conquer. Major Montgomerie's evidence proved the reverse of that, for it showed that in Central Asia alone there were vast and valuable regions, which for many yeaza yet to come could only be explored by Pundits. Don Enrique de Bourbon, when on his way to the duel which proved fatal to him, turned to one of the atten- dants and related the following storyThere was an old voman te whom he had been in the habit of giving alm8. One day, when ne was passing out of church, this person met him, and falling on her knees begged him to hear her. Touched by the emotion she exhibited, he invited her to speak, never doubting that she had some request to make. She at once rose, and with the air of an inspired prophetess, said: Monseigneur, never fight a duel i If yeu do, you will instantly be killed." "Till this day," added the Prinoe, I had quite forgotten the prediction of the sorceress. I know not what now brings it to my mind." It is to be hoped the old woman derives some satisfaction from the fact tha& her prophecy has been so exactly fulfilled. A serious colliery accident, which has resulted in the death of seven men, occurred on Saturday, near Edin- burgh. The scene of the disaster is in the vicinity of Bath- gate, the centre of a large colliery and oil distillery district; and the cause of the lamentable occurrence is attributed to the wood-work of the lbaft of the pit having caught fire at a time when fifty-six men were at work. By the exertions of those on the surface forty-nine men were with difficulty drawn up through the flames. Owing to the smoke, how- ever, it was impossible to tell when the cage containing the rescued men had arrived at the surface, and in one instance one of the colliers was brought up twice in what is described as a red-hot cage. After the fire had been extinguished, the remaining seven men were found dead at the bottom.ofthe P»t» The Bishop of Moray and; Ross has declined^ the offer of translation to the bishopric of Edinburgh. In the notice of a review the following suggestion ia made by a contemporary"the volume contains six articles and would have been improved, we think, if half-a-dozen of them had been struck out." Earl Spencer, if we may credit the Dublin Mail, will resign the Lord-Lieutenancy of Ireland after Easter; and it is not improbable Mr. Chichester Fortescue win succeed, with an English peerage. A number of London compositors are now out on strike, in Aosequeuce of three large firms having ignored the payment by the scale mutually agreed upon in 1866 by a joint committee of masters and workmen. The New York Herald authorised its agent in London to expend no less a sum than £800 in specialcorrespondenoe and special ocean telegrams when sending an account of the Oxford and Cambridge boat race to America on Wednesday last. The Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery-office calculates that in the year ending the 31st of March, 1870, the consumption of pens in the public offices supplied by him amounted to 15,030 gross of steelpena and 553,797 quill pens. Their cost amounted to £3,039. "A young French lady who has be«n by accident vaccinated from the lymph taken from a Zouave, has ever since, to the distress of her family, given herself up to smoking, fencing, absinthe, dancing a la militaire-which is very expressive in action of feet and legs."—Court Journal Mr. Disraeli's new novel Lothair will be published on the 2nd of May. The event has excited considerable interest. It is reported that a proposal was made to the author of £10,000, and another offer of £4,000 for its use in a periodical. The Limerick Farmers' Club have passed a vote of confidence in their chairman, Mr. Bolster, of whom Mr. G. H. Moore, M.P., recently spoke so disrespectfully. Mr. Bolster, in expressing his thanks, called Mr. Moore a "puppy;' but this expression he afterwards said he was willing to with- draw. One of Prince Pierre Bonaparte's witnesses was a butcher named Le Chantre. His evidence was quite at varience with his previous depositions. The presioent de- manded, "How do you explain these divergencies!" "M. le President," returned the respectable Le Chantre, "I am here to swear, and not to give explanations to these gentle- men The announcement (says Herepath) is made that the Dowlals works are about to change hands, Sir Ivor Guest, Bart., M.P., having determined te rid himself of the great responsibility of carrying on such a vast establishment. Dowlais, according to general belief, are the largest iron works in the world, and the purchase money is reported to be about one million. Active steps are being taken by the Roman Catholic clergy and laity of the metropolis to convene an aggregate meeting in the week after Easter, in St. James's Hall, to protest against the inspection of conventual and monastic institutions. At the Sheffield Town Hall, on Saturday, two men were charged with having assaulted a non-unionist collier, named Samuel Thorpe, who resides at Westwood. Evidence was given proving that prosecutor had been most brutally lll-UBed, kicked, &c., the affair arising out of the Thorncliffe dispute. The Bench decided to commit the prisoners for trial at the next assizes, bail being allowed. Mr. Odger is noways cast down. He is prepared 5 to contest the flrst large borough seat that falls vacant, and keep on at the seat till he gets into the House somehow. A fabulously wealthy colonist has not long ago come home, having realised.' He has taken an immense fancy to George,' and has determined that he shall be in Parlia- ment."—Court Journal. A fund is being raised on behalf of the widow and children of the late Mr. Dixon, the well-known writer on agricultural and sporting subjects. Mr. Dixon leaves behind him a family of eight children, for whom, owing to his long- continued illness, no adequate provision has been made. The Duke of Devonshire, president of the Royal Agricultural Society, heads the list of subscribers with a donation of twenty-five guineas. Major Palliser writes that the amount spent by him in hard cash for experiments since the date of the introduction of his chilled projectile has been £8.250 and he has received a return from Government of £7,600. It will thus be seen that he has been a considerable loser by the introduction of his guns. The Archbishop of York, preached on Sunday night last, a sermon under the dome of St. Paul's to an overwhelm, ing congregation. He selected for his text "Art thou a King then1" (St. John, xviii. ch., 37th v.), and gave an able expo- sition of the principles of the Christian faith. At a meeting of the Cambridgeshire Chamber of Agriculture on Saturday a discussion took place on local taxation, when it was resolved that a petition be presented to Parliament praying that the injustice under which the landed interests in this country labour, in being farai for imperial as well as local purposes, in respect of their property, may be remedied. Father Ignatius endeavours to rival the monks of old in their importunity upon their flocks. Acoording to the South London Courier, he told his congregation the other Sunday evening, in the course of his sermon, that "after clearing expenses there was only sixteen shillings left. Ladies with rings up o the first joint of their fingers gave three- penny pieces. If he knew who put the threepenny piece* in the bags he should go round and return them." An agitation Ihas for some time past been going on in the columns of many of the Paris and French provincial journals against the stamp duty imposed upon newapapera, which is objected to as valueless as a source of revenue, while being in many cases 33 per cent, of the selling price, it serlouSly impedes the circulation of the papers which are sub- ject to the impost. One night last week a fatal accident happened to an old woman in her 102nd year, named Sarah Mason, residing in Birmingham. She was in the act of getting into bed, when her night-dress caught fire. Her cries brought asaistanoe, and the fire was extinguished, and deceased was conveyed to the General Hospital. It was found that deceased was severely burnt on the legs and thighs. The usual remedies were applied, notwithstanding which deceased gradually sank, and died early next morning. Another batch of forty-three South London trades men were fined last week for having short weights and measures in their possession. The list comprised twelve chandlers; beer retailers and publicans, and general dealers, six of each; four bakers, three each of greengrocers and cooked meat sellers; two each of cheesemongers, grocers, and butchers; and one each of whitening manufacturers, fishmongers, and provision dealers. The total amount of the fines was jMS 12s. 6d. The Church Review understands that in the event of any fresh ecclesiastical prosecution being instituted against any member of the High Church party, several laymen have resolved that the flagrant breaches of the Rubrics committed by certain of the bishops shall no longer be allowed to pass unnoticed. It is felt that there is no reason why the same measure of justice which is meted to the poor inenmhimt should not be dealt out to the wealthy prelate. An important conference on the Education Bill took place in London, on Saturday, between a number of members of Parliament, members of the league, and representatives of various associations of schoolmasters. It was "understood" by Mr. Dixon that the Government were likely to yield to the wishes of the League so far as to fix religious teaching either at the commencement or close of school hours. The general opinion of the schoolmasters, however, was that the "religious dimculty" was no difficulty" at all off the platform and never appeared within the school walls. It appears that Mr. Justice Blackburn, who parsed sentence upon Robert Hardiment on his conviction for bribery at the last Norwich (Eighth Ward) Municipal Elec- tion, has declined to make an order placing him in the first class of misdemeanants. The prisoner has consequently been relegated to the prison dress, and is treated as aa ordi- nary misdemeanant. As he is a man who has been accus- tomed to the comforts of life, having been a tradesman In a fair way of business, Hardiment has been much mortified by his new position; and his friends propose to obtain, If pos- sible, a mitigation of his sentence. Admiral James Thome, nearly ninety years of age, and one of the oldest admirals on the retlred»iist, Is before the Bankruptcy Court, in London. It appears that he is in receipt of j6456 per annum halt-pay, and the case stood over at a previous meeting in the absence of the bankrupt, and with the view to a portion of his income being appropriated for the benefit of his creditors. It was stated that the Admiralty had sanctioned the payment of £160 for the first year, and £100 per year afterwards to the official 88tenee for the benefit of the creditors, and the further hearing was adjourned sine die. A solicitor made an application to a London magis- trate for a summons against two persons connected with the society formed to secure the proper observation of the Lord's Day. It was alleged that the accused themselves acted as "common informers," and thereby broke the Act which the society undertook to preserve from infringement. The magistrate declined to sanction the summons; but said that the applicant, if he was in earnest in the matter, might obtain one through the action of the Qlleen's Bench. The inquiry into the loss of the Normandy terminated on Monday. In giving judgment, the court found the Nor- mandy solely to blame for the disastrous collision. The ground on which this decision was come to was, that con- trary to the regulation for preventing collisions at sea, the Normandy was not slowed after entering the fog. The court laid no stress on the allegation that the Mary did not show a masthead light, it being equally the duty of the other steamer, whether the Mary were a steamer or a I&Ui.n¡ ahIp to keep out of her way. Captain Stranack's certificate was therefore returned to him. The court were of opiuion that more lives might have been saved but for the irresolute con- duct of the second mate. No valid reason had been given for his returning to his own ship after he had been ordered to proceed to the Normandy. On Saturday afternoon, Mr. Morley, M.P., pre- sided over a conference of Liberal members of Parliament and a body of school teachers belonging to the Nonconfor- mist, Church of England, and WMleyan schools in the metropolis, at which the religions diftlcultr" in the educa- tion question was fully discussed. On two points the ieacben were nearly, if not quite, unanimous, viz —that the present system of Bible teaching in the metropolitan schools had not prevented parents from sending their children to be taught, and that a time table for religious instruction ought not to be adopted. A general belief was expressed that it would be practicable to work a conscience clause in school hours, so that any child might be put to other lessons whilst the religions teaching was in progress, it the parents so desired.