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town talk,


town talk, BY OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. Otw røders wtH understand that we do not hold ourselves Pffpon- riblefor our able Correspondent's opinions. I love to give the whole name," says Gold- smith, parenthetically, when speaking of that virtuous lady, Miss Carolina Wilhelmina Amelia Skeggs. "The Garibaldi Mutual Life Assurance and Sick Fund Friendly Society bears a name somewhat longer, and a charaeter, if possible, worse than the young lady in the Vicar of Wakefield." The conduct of Mr. Tidd Pratt in exposing the above society is highly applauded in some quarters, while other persons say that he only did his duty, and that in a case where his duty was remarkably easy. They would like to see that gentleman fly at higher game; there are other societies just as rotten, but which it would not be quite so easy to crush. Look at the advertisement sheet of a daily paper: will you not find it full of the puffs of doctors who have no diploma, and societies whose reservefundisamyth ? Thevery name of the above society sounds sensational and suspicious. If you forget all the noble qualities of the great general, and think only of his boldness and daring, there is a certain fitness in the use of Garibaldi's name by a society, whose trustees are fictitious, and which, with £ 49 in bank, declares that it has a reserve fund of X25,000, and offers .£100 to any one who can name an instance in which it has not paid its claims. It would be well if similar swindles, of the existence of which there cannot be a doubt, were exposed. It is revolting to contemplate such attempts to trade on the prudence of the poor man, and cheat his virtue of its reward. You have read Dr. Russell's narrative of the expedition to lay the Atlantic cable. It reads as interesting as the first book of the Æneid. The attempt of human thought to permanently invade the silent depths of the Atlantic has again failed. But the failure is such as to fill those interested in the Atlantic telegraph-and who is not interested in it?—with the utmost confidence in its ultimate success. It would be highly unreasonable to suppose that in an expedition of such risk and magnitude human skill could have provided against every contingency. The cable has been carried to within 600 miles of its destination, it has been grappled for with partial success, in a depth which it is hard to realise; and people look forward to being able, a twelvemonth hence, to send their thoughts thrilling through the oozy valleys of the Atlantic. The manner of picking up the cable is certainly capable of im- provement; and if the suggestion of Captain Anderson be followed out, such accidents as that through which the cable finally came to grief will be effectually guarded against. People are still talking about the fStes at Cher- bourg. Remembering the history of the two nations, it is a remarkable and suggestive thing to see the French and English fleets meeting in the same harbour, not to blow each other to the moon," but to express mutual sentiments of friendship and goodwill. It shows how greater intercourse has crushed the respective prejudices of Englishmen and Frenchmen, while it is in keeping with the spirit of an age whose tilting ground is the workshop, and whose tournaments are industrial exhibitions. It is not surprising, therefore, that some persons were desirous of making theses a means whereby they may argue against the expense to which we have gone in strengthening our fortifications and augmenting our navy. On the one hand it is asked, What are the terms on which we are with France? Louis Napoleon had no hostile intentions < towards us." How do you know ? is the reply of otherswho take an opposite view. How oft the sight of means to do ill deeds makes ill deeds done," say they. Friends are always most willing to assist when their assistance is not needed. The man on whose lip a repartee is ever ready is seldom made the subject of a jest, and the nation whose three-deckers are well manned, and whose army is kept up at high fighting mark, is, probably, more likely to have good allies and preserve its peace than a nation whose assistance in any enterprise must be small, and whose unde- fended wealth may seem an easy prize to the greedy and unscrupulous. There is nothing antagonistic to peace in being ready for war; and we have seen at Cherbourg, that the cannon may boom "Peace and goodwiil, goodwill and peace, Peace and goodwill to all mankind." The cattle disease is still a subject of conversa- tion, and is, I fear, likely to be for some time. There is as much difference of opinion as ever as to its origin, and whether it can be cured, &c. There are quacks, of course, with infallible remedies, whose immodest boldness win the confi- dence and the money of the ignorant. But there is no eure, and there seems to be no hope of any, on which dependence can be placed. The cognate subject of cholera begins to excite some alarm. It is wonderful that notwithstanding all that has been said and written about the im- portance of cleanliness, so much filth fs allowed to exist in some parts of London. For instance, the hot smell from which one suffers in walking up St. Clement's-lane is awful. And near Clare- market there are places where cats'-meat is boiled, and where black-puddings, and tripe, and other delicate dishes are prepared, the stench from which is as bad as that from any dissecting room in the kingdom. These are cases where the autho- rities might fairly interfere. Such places ought not to be allowed to exist in the heart of a large population. Some open space in the suburbs would be the proper site for an establishment of this sort. Forward's career has turned attention to the subject of gambling, and the number of persons who must make a living by sharping. Some have been inclined to pour forth a lamentation over the degeneracy of the age, and point to the wide- spreading evil of gambling. It is, I fear, true that this vice is more general than formerly; but it is by no means carried to the extent amongst the aristocracy it was in the time of our fathers and grandfathers. Perhaps, however, the loss, to a poor man, of a few shillings might be more felt than hundreds or thousands of pounds would be by the wealthy. You may see, even when the rain is coming down fast and heavy, a crowd on the "Euins," in Farringdon-road, with umbrellas and betting-books you may aho see ladies at the races taking and giving the odds in kid-gloves and half-sovereigns; and I grant you there are black-legs in every billiard-room and every club; but who will say that gambling pre- vails to the extent that it did when Hogarth drew the Cock-pit," or when Charles James Fox lost 200,000 pounds in one night; or, to come nearer I to ourselves, when Rawdon Crawley and Becky Sharpe played their little game ? A lesson may be learned from the highly virtuous way in which Forward and gambling are discussed by gentlemen while looking down on the world from their club windows; many of these are not without spot or blemish, nevertheless, they discuss the greater crimes of others with a kind of disgust, whilst they consider their lesser ones harmless, forgetting that one false step leads to many. Even the crimes of that miserable felon will not be without their use if they impress on these gentlemen and on the world at large, the great truth that sin begets sin, and crime beckons on crime, and one passion overgrown assumes leadership of the rest, and drags all into wild revolt. Z.


Cholera and its Remedy.

Locking the Doors of Railway…

The Cattle Plague.

Close of the New Zealand War.