[PUNCH.] A FACT FOR NATURALISTS.—Young Housewife: Dear me what very small egg3 for twopence- halfpenny each It seems quite extravagant to take them!" Affable Dalrywoman (who has always a conclusive reply for complaints): Well, yes, ni'wij so it does. But I ve always noticed that new-laid eggs are small "IN VINO VEUITAS."—Bailie Verintosh, mem- ber of School Board (who wished to address the children after luncheon): "Noo, bairns, aw'll jeest tall ye, we're a' like sheps-some's en poarrt!—some's awa'oot i' med ocean!—some's uear the haven Ye're just leaving poarrt! A.sh f'me, aw thenk a'wm aooot hauf sheash over." [Agreed, nem. eon.] Two SIDES TO A QUBSTIO:oq-It's all very well to talk of sticking to your old friends, whether they be prosperous or the reverse! But what if they resemble Billy Scatcherd, for instance ? You aak B. S. to dinner to meet your respected father- in-law (the dean), and General Jenkinson, and the member for Hornsey, and, worst of all, Sir Georgius Midas and Mrs Ponsonby de Tomkyns- not to mention the better halves of these impor- tant people—and dear old Billy, who hates hum- bug and-scorns worldly success, and still pawns his watch to pay his rent, insists on reminding you across the table of the good old days when you used to do the same and, as a piquant set- off against your present splendour, tells that capital story of how you managed to go tick for a whole twelvemonth at a certain tripe and trotter shop in Drury Lane, and then settled the bill with a hat and coat your grandmother lent you to go to your grandfather's funeral—and all this with the servants in the room—confound him !—and that spiteful little Eoheinian minx, Mrs Scatcherd, gobbling away for the week before and the week to come, and revelling on your wife's black looks at you
[JUDY.] 'Arry remarks that it's a great pity Primrose Ill can't be removed to the Vale of 'Elth. Mrs Allen's Hair Restorer is not the gentleman who is always advertising for next of kin. Why are the children of a gentleman addicted to acts of petty larceny like certain conical articles of combustible perfumery? Because their pa steals (pAstilles). PRECISELY.—Jones says he can't for the life of him, think how it is that birds always seem so happy, seeing that they are mostly always" up a tree." AT IT AGAIN !—A truly shocking occurrence is reported; it is stated that the Lord Chamberlain has been nearly thrown into a fit on being informed that several highly respectable shop- keepers in the immediate vicinity of his office have left- off clothes." DIVISION OF LABOUR.—The Captain (to stable lad, who is mounted on a newly-purchased animal) Well Tim, how's he go ? Tim (whose mount pulls a bit) Oh, well, yer 'onner, well; and shure, don't he ought ? for if he carries me I carries his great 'ead, and i' faith I've been thinkin' as his is best half of the bargain."
[FUN. ] Varnish works-Lord Beaconsfield's speeches. If forty poles make a furlong, how many Russians would it take to do it ? MUMPT AND Gurmpy.-Firf;t Boy: "Hallo, Billy, got the mumps?" Second Boy:" Yes, an' a wish you'd got 'em as bad." Mr M'Mullen has recovered from the L. C. & D. Railway the sum of £4,500 as compensation for injuries received in the Sittingbourne accident. It is not everyone who recovers so well from an accident. A CONTENTED MIND.—Lady: "They tell me your cow never gives any milk, Betty ?" Old Betty No, mum, she don't give hardly any. But bless 'er 'eart, she'll eat as much as two o' them good milkers! The Globe shows itself possessed of extraordinary cleverness in tracing causes. It says: An explosion of gas occurred last evening in the vestry room of the Congregational Chapel in Robert-street, Grosvenor-square. It arose from anescapeofgas^
A new play in two acts, by the Laureate, has been accepted during last week by Mr Irving for performance at the Lyceum. Its subject is for the present to remain untold. Mr Cecil Brooks, a son of the late Mi. Shirley Brookes, has turned printer and publisher, having bought the business of Mr E. Curtice, of Catherine-street, London. The life of Mr John T. Delaine, on which liis brother-in-law, Sir G. W. Dasent, is engaged, will, we understand, be published by Messrs. Macmillan and Co. in the course of the autumn. Below the Liberal Gangway is the title of a series of sketches commenced in the Congrega- tionalist for March, the subject of No. 1 being Mr Joseph Cowen. A new monthly is announced tooppear shortly, The Conservative Review, "whose animating spirit will be impartiality, and whose resolute aim Con- servatism." It wi)l be edited by Mr Percy Wash- ington. With last week's Graphic appeared as a special supplement a large and splendid engraving of portraits 'of the Prince and Princess of Wales, from a photograph by Messrs Turner and Drink- water. On the 26th ultimo Victor Hugo reached his seventy-eighth birthday. In honour of the occasion Mr Swinburne has written a birthday ode, of some 500 lines in lenth, which will be published immediately. Mr Ruskin will contribute to a forthcoming number of the Theatre some remarks on Mr Irving's Shylock. In a preliminary note on this subject, which appears in the current number of that magazine, he says—" I did, and do much admire Mr Irving's own acting of Shylock but I entirely dissent (and indignantly as well as entirely) from his general reading and treatment of the play." By a letter from the West Coat of Africa we learn that Mr Stanley has founded the first Belgian station at Vivi, on the Coug j, about a hundred and thirty miles from the coast, and five miles below the Yellala Falls. The position chosen is the summit of a hill, about a hundred and fifty feet above the river, and here an iron and a wooden house have already been erected. Mr Stanley makes this place his head-quarters, but is constantly starting off without notice on expeditions into the surrounding country. Mr Stanley includes in his programme the thorough exploration of the Western Congo and the countries on both banks, after he has once reached the Luulaba. The expedition is stated to have taken the title of the Societe d'Etudes du Haut Congo. The question of who was the inventor of printing, was, it seems, by no means settled by van der Linde's Life of Gutenberg" and his claim for that German worthy as the long- sought inventor. The well-known incunabulist, Mr J. H. Hessels has been patiently examining Dr. van der Linde's supposed proofs of Gutenberg's claim, and finds them almost as ill-supported, al. most as much founded on forgeries and documents with faulty pedigrees, as Dr. van der Linde found that Coster's claim and the Haarlem Legend were. Mr Hessel's series of articles on Gutenberg and what may be called the Metz Legend will appear in monthly instalments in our excellent coupon! rary, the Printing Times, published by Miners.Vyman, of Great Queen-street. Every document of importance in the cortroversy will be translated and commented upon, the forgeries exposed, and the copies of the copies of supposed oripina^f h,.vp n".vcr been produced, and Whose where abouts has never been ascertained, ■wi i be st own to be as valueless as they really are; gt least, so we are iniormea.
MUSICAL NOTES. I The grand complimentary concert, to be given on the 31st inst. to Sir JulhtB Benedict in Liver- pool, will doutless bring together one of the largest and most fashionable audiences of the season. Madame Albani, Miss Lilian Bailey, Madame Trebelli, Mr Shakespeare, Mr Frederick King, and Herr HeniBehell, are announced as vocalists, Mr John Thomas as solo harpist, Mr W. T. Best as organist, and Miss Dora Schirmacher and Lady Benedict (on this occasion only) as solo pianists. The full band and chorus of the Philharmonic Society will also assist. A concert of more than average excellence took place last Thursday evening,- Me-rch 4th, in the Lecture Hall of St. Peter's Church, High Park- street, Liverpool. In addition to a carefully and well-trained chorus, Miss Jones (who has had the honour of singing before her Majesty the Queen) Miss Leather, and other equally competent vocalists were engaged for the occasion. A numerous full audience testified by its applause to the unmistakeable abilities of the performers. Mr Fred. J. Foxley, both as pianoforte soloist and accompanist, was eminently successful. His ren- dering of Rockstro's brilliant fantasia, "Lysia," was enthusiastically redemanded, and his crisp and artistic style obtained the same cordial recogni- tion after his performance of Ambroise Thomas' gavotte from "Mignon." Mr William Arvon Parry, as conductor of the choral forces, displayed much judgment and skill, and in that important capacity contributed materially to the enjoyment of the evening. Herr Richter, the great German conductor, is expected in London towards the end of April to superintend his rehearsals. His concerts are to be given at St. James' Hall, London, on Mondays and Thursdays, from May 10th to June 14th in- clusive. Besides the nine symphonies of Beethoven, will be heard a symphony of Haydn, the sym- phony No. 3 in D minor by Schumann, the great symphony in C (No. 9) of Schubert, and also a symphony by Brahms and Mozart. The band will number this year 100 performers. Herr Hermann Franke will again lead the ordhestta, and the choral reharsals have been placed under the direction of Herr Theodor Frantzen-
Up to the present time there is nothing very decided in the change of fashions from winter to spring, though we are rapidly approaching the time when a change of costume is necessary and spring costumes required. Some of the new fab- rics introduced for spring wear are very pretty and effective though they are not to be seen in any great variety. The only difference seemingly in the designs from those of former months is the small- ness of the patterns on the floriated or brocaded goods, which if rather an improvement than other- wise. Most of the new spring dresses are made with basque bodice, and double skirt. Short dress-, es are the most worn on account of their great convenience. The deep kilt to the* knee is still worn, with the over-skirt draped closely over the front, and the back looped rather lower down than usual. Another style for walking dresses is, to have the skirt cut quite round without any train, and very scant; the edge ornamented with small kiltiugs, above which the material is 3lightlygathered over the fronts and sides, divided at each gore with panels of fancy material. At the back the skirt is still draped. very much, or has a second d'apery at the back in polonaise fashion. The bodices are mostly cuirass e shaped in front and some postillion pleated at the back. Combination of materials, one plain, and one figured, seems indispensable in all the spring costumes in some cases 3 and 4 are used, but of courfe it need hardly be said that such a variety must have all the colours well and carefully chosen. The panier arrange- ment does not seem to be gaining much ground; it is really only becoming to very slight figures, and slight figures apparently have no desire to be made stout-looking, consequently the panier is not much in favour. Some few -dresses are trim- med rather more about the hips than formerly, but still not in a very prominent manner. We have seen a very neat-looking costume for a young lady, which quite took our fancy. For the benefit of those of our readers who may have the same taste as ourselves, we will describe it. The material was Indian cashmere, a dark shade of claret, with trim- mings of broche, old gold being the predominating shade. The short skirt was kilted quite deep, that is abov the knees; laid over the hem of the skirt was a broad band of the broche. A short panier arranged over the front, raised towards the left front, with a rosette of broche; the back fell in two pointed ends, with bows of brocaded ribbon. The basque bodice was pointed in front, and pos- tillion pleated at the back. The bodice was open at the neck, and shaped with shawl revers of the broche, showing a full gathered vest, also of the broche. The tight coat-sleeve was ornamented with a double cuff of the two materials.
HOUSE OF LORDS.—FBIDAY. Their Lordships went into committee on the Local Courts of Bankruptcy (Ireland) Bill, all the elapses of which were agreed to. The repoit of amendments on the Relief of Distress (Ireland) Bill was agreed to after some con- versation, in which Lord Emly and the Earl of Kimberly protested against some remarks made by Mr Lowther, in a speech he delivered at Kendal some weeks since, with regard to the condition of Ireland. Lord Emly said the Chief Secretary's language, as applied to the whole of Ireland, was not justified by the facts, and it was calculated to produce a bad effect in that country at a time when it was very desirous that a tone of conciliation and goodwill should prevail. HOUSE OF COMMONS. -FulDA-T. An interesting conversation, which almost rose to the dignity of a debate, took place on the subject of private executions. Mr Hibbert asked whether the attention of the Home Secretary had been called to the stringent con- ditions laid down by the High Sheriff of Lan- cashire for the admission of reporters to Kirk- dale prison during the execution on Tuesday last. Mr Cross replied that the High Sheriff had told him that he was perfectly willing that representatives of the press should be present, but there was a very strong feeling that nothing could be more injurious than those descriptions of executions that had appeared in newspapers during past years. The object of the Private Execution Act was to prevent demoralising scenes outside the gaol, but the mischief would be increased ten-fold if such descriptions were allowed to be published throughout the country. These matters were entirely in the hands of the sheriff, and he did not think he ought to in- terfere. He had no objection to an independent person boing present, but the difficulty was to find one willing to attend. He would, however, communicate with some of the High Sheriffs and the visiting committees, and enquire if any arrangement could be made. Mr John Bright observed that a witness before the commision which recommended private execution expressed the opinion that the change would very. soon lead to the abolition of capital punishment, because the public would never stand such a monstrous state of things as that criminals should be strangled in private. He believed that the feelings of the public were outraged by these occurrences. A very lively debate followed, but the house eventually proceeded to the ordinary business without coming to any decision. Sir Wilfrid Lawson afterwards moved his local option motion in a speech which bristled with wit and good sense. He was followed by Mr Burt, who seconded the motion, and by Mr Gladstone. The right honourable member for Greenwich in his speech seemed to oppose the motion on the ground of its impracticability, and because the country was not "ripe" for it. The debate was continued by M* Wheelhouse. vriia, -.A. course, OPPCIie.41 tho motion by moving an amendment. Mr Bright was one of the subsequent speakers, stating that he should vote cordially for the resolution, though he was still as strongly opposed as ever to the principle of the Permissive Bill. Public opinion was con- stantly advancing to the point at which the house would be compelled to deal with the question. The Marquis of Hartington altogether objected to dealing with a subject of that kind through the medium of an abstract resolution. After further debate a vote was taken, the figures being-For the motion, 134; against, 248; majority against, 114. HOUSE OF LORDS.—MONDAY. In the House of Lords," the Earl of Beaconsfield announced in a single sentence that Parliament would be dissolved when the Chancellor of the Exchequer had made his financial statement. HOUSE OF, COMMONS.—MONDAY. In a comparatively thin House, which had assembled in placid ignorance that any sensational announcement was in store for it, Sir Stafford Northcote stated that ber Majesty's Government had decided to advise the Queen to dissolve Par- liament at Easter. This determination was no doubt agreed upon at the Cabinet Council held the same morning at Lord Salisbury's private resi- dence. In informing the House of the decision of the Government, the Chancellor of the Exchequer said there were three periods in every Session- from its commencement to Easter; from thence to Whitsuntide; and'from'Whitsuntide to the close. The Government had chssen Easter for a disso- lution because an autumn election would interfere with the harvest, while if they dissolved at Whit- suntide it would be too late for the new House to take up important measures which required attention. The principal business—so Sir Stafford Northcote seemed to say—for the present Session was legislation for alleviating the distress in Ire- land, and that business had been practically accomplished. As to what remains to be done between now and-Easter, the only event of import- ance will be the Budget, which is to be introduced on Thursday. Sir Stafford, who once said that finance wast he stxcwg.pqin.t of the present Govern- ment, is particularly anxious that the Budget proposals of the Government should be known to the country before the election. The Vacant Seats Bill, which the Government pledged them- selves to deal with before the dissolution, is not even to be introduced, although, as Sir Stafford Northcote was only prevented by an unexpected prolongation of Committee of. Supply from bring- ing it forward pn Thursday night, it may be taken for granted that the Government would have per- sisted in their proposals if they had considered them, upon reflection, to be tenable. As to the London Water Bill, the Home Secretary, when challenged by Sir 0. Dilke, threw this measure over also with apparent. equanimity. All, he said, the Government intended from the outset to do was to prepare a scheme mau^h a. manner that it might go before a'Select Committee, who could decide upon it. It is shrewdly suspected on all sides that the sudden determination of the Govern- ment to dissolve has even more to do with the extraordinary unpopularity of this measure than their desire to avoid any interference with harvest operations. There were few. Liberal leaders in the House when Sir Stafford Northcote made his statement. In the absence of Lord Hartington, Mr Forster expressed the great satisfaction Jolt by the Opposition at the resolve of the Government to go to the country. HOUSE OF LORDS.—TUESDAY. Lord Houghton raised, in the Upper House, a discussion on the admission of reporters at executions. The noble lord referred approvingly to the conduct of editors of Liverpool newspapers in declining to. accept, in the case of the receiit executions at Kirkdale, conditions which would have made their representatives "officials of the High Sheriff." His lordship concluded by pro- posing a resolution. declaring it to.be advisable, in the opinion of the House, that other than official persons should be present at inter-mural execu- tions. Lord Sidmouth raised the old argument that the presence. of. reporters on these occasions abrogated to a great extent the measure which put an end to public executions, and went so far as-to declare that in his' opinion It would be well for the Legislature to pass an Act altogether excluding newspaper representatives. After the discussion had been continued • by Lord Fortescue and Lord Beauchamp, Lord Aberdare reminded the aoáe' that High Sheriffs were selected not for their moral or intellectual worth, but en account of their wealth. Lord Cranbrook objected to the resolution because it laid down a hard and fa^t rule, and argued that the presence of the chaplam, gaoler, and officials, and the subsequent inquest, secured all the publicity that was required.. The motion was ultimately negatived without a division. HOUSE OF COMMONS.—TUESDAY. In the course of a long list of questions, the Chancellor of the Exchequer fixed Friday morning for the debate on the question of the payment of the Afghan war expenses." Sir J. M'Keathft brought forward his motion for the appointment of a Select Committee to inquire into the incidence of. Imperial taxation. The hon. member contended that the gross revenue raised in Ireland wa^larger in proportion than that raised from its richer English neighbour. Sir #H. Selwin-Ibbetson-re- sisted the motion on behalf of the Government, but on a division it was only rejected by a major- ity of two votes. Mr Raikes afterwards brought forward his resolution on the subject of the com- pensation of railway servants, to which Sir E. Watkin moved an amendment declaring that, while it might on the eve of a general election serve party purposes in some boroughs to single out railway industry for exceptional legislation, such a course was contrary to precedent. The House was counted out while the debate was pro- ceediiag. Mr Cross on Tuesday formally completed the withdrawal of the London Water Bill, which he was understood to practically abandon on Monday. HOUSE OF COMMONS.—WEDNESDAY. Mr Andetson, moved-,the, second reading of ilis bill to remedy hardships in the present state of the law of patents for inventions, with the view of enabling inventors to reap a fulbr benefit from their discoveries. The hon. member proposed to bring down the initial cost of the patent to zelo, and to extend the term for which protection is given from fourteen to twenty-ene years. The Attorney-General oddly urged that the matter should be left in the hands of the Government, because they had repeatedly introduced bills on the subject. As their efforts have been confined to introducing bills, and they have not been able to carry any, it seems almost time for some efficient private member to take the matter up, The Attorney-General was good enough to promise that if the present Ministers were in power in the next Parliament, as in all probability they would be," he would do his best to deal with the subject again. The order for the second reading of the bill was ultimately discharged. Mr Plunket's measure for so amending the Irish Church Act as to give redress out of the existing funds to incum- bents and curates who received annuities calculated at less than JE200 a year was withdrawn, and the House went into Committee of Supply. Sir H. Selwin-Ibbetson proposed a supplementary vote of credit of 11,225,000 to cover the expenses of the war in Zululand.; but Mr Rylands, Mr Courtney, and Sir C. Dilke pressed for definite information as to what proportion of the charge the South African Colonies would contribute. Sir H. Selwin- Ibbetson could only reply that he believed that the receipt from the Cclonies of a considerable portion of the expense "was almost a matter of certainty," and as the House was not content with this vague assurance, progress was reported. It is worth remembering that the charge made upon the exchequer in connection with this miserable Zulu squabble, of which, according to Mr Osborne Morgan, the only result has been to make Cetewayo wear clothes, amounts to £ 4,500,000. The Attorney General introduced a bill to amend and continue the Acts relating to election petitions and to the prevention of corrupt practices at Parliamentary elections. On the motion of Mr Raikes, a resolution was passed enabling the private billi" not com- pleted this session to be taken up at the uext Par- liament. The House adjourned at twenty minutes to five o'clock.
Lord Beaconsfield has surpassed himself for tactical ingenuity. It was long an open secret that there would be a Dissolution this Spring but it was not expected till the Whitsun holi- days. But resistance to Home Rule seemed a good current cry with which to go to the country. Is it struck our Premier, who is no mean judge of human nature, and is equally shrewd in gauging the weak points of the average Englishman. He has probably not miscalculated his forces this time, and Imper- ialism at home and abrcad will be a good hack to win the race with. The Governor of Tobago or Trinidad would have been no suitable a channel through whom to make public the decision to Dissolve as the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, but for one reason; but that reason was decisive with so shrewd a judge of English character as our Premier. It is remarkable how a man without prei udices himself, or a spark of what I should call pat- riotism as well understands where John Bull's weak point is, and how he can play upon it. It will soon be seen whether this new appeal to Jingoism will succeed. The Dissolution secret was so well kept that up to the last moment even those who were in the secrets of the Cabinet were completely in the dark. It is amusing to remark that as the first announcement was received with cheers and counter-cheers from Ministerialists and the Opposition so there are rival notes of satis- faction sent up by the Liberal and Conservative press. It is impossible to forecast the future. Much will depend on the reception given to the Budget; but the general impression is that the Opposition is less prepared to take advantage of the appeal to the country than it t, has been for some time. It is like a large army badly lead against an inferior host, but under an able tactician. We have only to glance at the war of the North and South to guess the result. Mr Cross has not been able to carry his Wattr Bill. Indeed opposition to it increased at such a rate that he was compelled to abandon it, as it may virtually be said to have done. The remarkable circumstance is that the loudest opposition came from the Conservative side, and he was told in the plainest lallguage that no Conservative member for a Metropolitan borough would be safe by daring to support a measure which on the face of it was a job and muddle to boot. In fact, Mr Cross has not shown himself a man of business. He wants firmness, and has allowed himself to be talked round perhaps in the interest of the three paid members of the future Water Trust. The present Government are obtaining an unenviable notoriety for interfering with the Press. War correspondents have been prac- tically excluded from Afghanistan, the Indian Vernacular press has been placed ulider a cen- sorship, and now reporters are to all intents and purposes forbidden to represent the public at the execution of criminals. The reasoning of Mr Cross upon this last point is a little singular. Sensational newspaper-reports, he says, are ten times more injurious than public executions and the latter have been abolished. There were newspaper reports in the days of public executions, and undoubtedly in those days the reports were sensational enough. But the sen- sation was connected with publicity. Private executions are frightful spectacles enough, but the very fact that the spectators are so few robs the scene of the chief essentials of blood and thunder" description. On the other hand, whatever degree of confidence we are prepared to PI see im sheriffs, there ia a wide-spread feel- ing that the presence of reporters is a valuable safeguard against negligence and unnecessary cruelty in the performance of capital punish- ment. Lord Houghton, although failing to convince the Lords, has done good serviee by his prottfct. The Government have made less capital out of their attack upon Obstruction than they anticipated. If the Opposition had demurred to their measure as too severe, it would un- doubtedly have damaged them in the eyes of the country. If they had merely acquiesced in the Chancellor of the Exchequer's resolution, still Conservatives would have had the credit of saving the reputation of Parliament. But by urging a more stringent course upon the Government the Opposition took out the wind from the Tory sails. And, whereas it has hitherto been asserted that Obstruction was indirectly aided by the apathy of the Liberals, it will now go to the country that but for Conservative dilatoriness the mischief might have- been met long ago. Whether the Government resolution will succeed remains to be seen. The general opinion is that it will not. The Home Rulers are-credited with some desperate design for rendering it migatory. Their tactics during the debate have been closely watched. Their frequent change of front, or rather, the contradictory character of their successive speeches, has puzzled and alarmed the Ministerialists. In point of fact, there was little or no design in their conduct. They are, as yet, confused and divided in opinion. The party never had any real cohesiveness, and until the return of Mr Parnell, beyond making themselves generally obnoxious, they will have no determinate line of strategy. Mr Parnell's quarrel with the editor of the New York Herald has cost the latter a jour- ney to this country. The Americans, who wished to subscribe in aid of the suffering Irish, but who objected to Mr ParnelFs mode of ad- vocacy, sent in their contributions to Mr Gor- don Bennett, who, as a Roman Catholic, naturally took a warm interest in the distress of the Roman Catholic peasantry of Ireland, and who himself subscribed a magnificent sum towards their relief. The New York Herald Fund has reached the noble figure of XlUO,000, and Mr Gordon Bennett has come over to this country in order to provide for its due adminis- tration. Col. King-Harman, the Conservative Home Ruler and Lord Lieutenant (whom, by the way, Mr Gladstone considers such an in- significant person that he pretends not to know whether his name is King-Harman or Harman- King), is to have the chief direction and management of the money. Is it a hoax or a goak-an invention, that is, of the enemy or a practical joke on his own reputation-which Dr Parker, of the City Temple, is going to play off on us ? He is announced as about to stand for the City at the next Dissolution, and I wish him joy of the adventure. Not that I object to Dissenting ministers changing their renue, and giving up the chapel for St. Stephen's. There are Mr Dale and Guinness Rogers, both of whom I should be glad to see in the House. They would be stronger men than either Mr Miall or Mr Richard, both of whom were preachers first and politicians afterwards but Dr Parker i -well, he is Dr Parker, and represents himself. For that reason he had better stick to his.marble tub. I should like to have been at Goschpnen to witness the distribution of some three thousand seven hundred medals to the workmen-Swiss, Italian, and German-who have successfully pierced the St. Gothard Tunnel. It was a graceful idea to present the men with a medal, and suggests that decoration should in future be bestowed in the battles of industry. I remember passing over the St Gothard when the first band of workmen were opening the adit to the tunnel eight years ago, and it has been completed within a month of the time arranged for. In fact, the only mistake was a trifling miscalculation of a few dozen yards, which, as in the contractor's favour, has enabled him to open it sooner than he other- wise would have done. It was said of Lamartine when he entered the Chamber of Deputies he was scornfully asked whether he would sit on the right or left. He answered, "An Plafond" ("On the ceiling.") It would seem that Victor Hugo's place is on the political ceiling at present. He always was sky-high in his dreamy politics, but now more than ever. His last remonstrance against France giving up Hartmann, the Russian Nihilist, is a case of sitting on a ceiling and playing the god to mere mortals. Any- thing more unpractical and purely mischievous even Victor Hugo could not desire. It is the very way to complicate matters and bring on a breach with Russia, the end of which it is easy to foresee. Brompton may well be "passionate," since it is situated in the vicinity of "aesthetic" South Kensington. The Great Exhibition of 1851 stamped its site for ever as the home of Art and Industrial Education, just as Belgravia is the head-quarters of fashion, and the Temple the head-quarters of law. Block after block of buildings — more magnificent truly in their proportions than elegant in design-is rising round the South Kensington Museum-itself of no mean dimensions—the object of which is in some shape or other to instruct the taste and educate the handicraft of the nation. The Trustees of the Exhibition of '51 have just decided to grant a piece of land near the museum to the City and Guild's Technological Institution for the erection of their proposed central building. The institution undertakes to spend Y,50,000 over the building and to provide X5,000 a year towards its support. It is satisfactory to find a part at least of the huge city endowments appropriated to so worthy an object. If ten times the amount were devoted to kindred subjects, the Guild's would stand in much less imminent danger of disestablishment and disendowment. The Sunday League are engaged in me- morializing her Majesty against the action of her Chamberlain in forbidding the Sunday Entertainments at the Connaught Theatre, consisting of scientific lectures followed by sacred music. As far as her Majesty's private opinions are concerned, no doubt she would quite coincide with the views of the me- morialists for the head of the Church of England is quite Lutheran in her views of the mode of keeping Sunday. In the meanwhile the Sunday Lecture Society announce a series of lectures on Sunday afternoons at St. George's Hall, Langham Place. The lecturers are all learned and eminent men; but it must be confessed that the subjects announced are too dry to be at all likely to draw those for whom they are chiefly designed, or to form a counter attraction to the public-house. Besides the Sunday Lecture Society there has recently been formed a Literary Monday Afternoon Association." This Association has sprung up under the auspices of the Inter- national Literary Association," which has been so signally unsuccessful in enlisting the support of English men of letters, although it did obtain the adhesion of Victor Hugo, whose profound ignorance of anything English pro- bably deceived him as to the literary position of the chief promoters of the Association. I don't exactly see what class of people are to have their literary aspirations provided for by Monday afternoon lectures. Since the St. Monday" movement fell through, ordinary people are hard at work as a general thing on Monday afternoons. London is teeming with educational institutions formed for the sole benefit of young ladies with nothing to do. The meetings are to be held fortnightly, and the first was held at Steinway Hall last Mon- day, when Mr Edward Jenkins read Ginx's Baby to a tolerably good audience. If auth- ors must make themselves ridiculous by exhibit- ing themselves and their literary wares to the public in this manner, of course they may as well do it on a Monday afternoon as at any other time of the week but it is difficult to see any practical good in organizations of this kind.
We do not necessarily identify ourselves with the sentiments of our correspondents. THE PATENT LAWS. SIR,-The Lord Chancellor has recently given a decision which is of considerable importance to inventors and patentees, and of which they will doubtless be glad to hear. In May, 1869, the then Lord Chancellor (Lord Hatherley) decided that if two applications were made for a patent for the same invention, the one who used the greatest diligence and first obtained his Great Seal, should be held to be the real inventor, and that his grant of Letters Patent must be a bar to the grant of Letters Patent for the same invention to another applicant, even thoueh the latter was earlier in point of date in obtaining his Pro- visional Protection. This decision, which has been followed in several cases, has borne rather hardly on inventors who, have been compelled to push on with their patents oftentimes before they were certain of their practical value. In the case just settled, "ex parte Derring," Lord Cairns expressed his dissent from Lord Hatherley's decision, and says he has never acted upon it, and from the first could not understand it. He considers the Legislature intended the patentee to have the full term of his protection (six months) for working out the details of his invention and perfecting his specification, and in the case now under con- sideration ordered the first applicant's patent to be sealed, though the later one who had got his seal first opposed him. It would therefore appear, that at all events, as long as Lord Cairns occupies the Woolsack, inventors may avail themselves of the full term of their Provisional Protection without danger of losing their patents from the greater activity of later rivals.—We are, &c., HUGHES AND SON. Patent Office, 123, Chancery Lane, London. THE HOLYWELL SCHOOL BOARD. SIR,-In your account of the last meeting of this board, I find that a certain portion of Mrs Emma Parry's report has reference to Mrs Pierce and mvself. I would not have taken any notice whatever of the matter had not Sunday evening for a special purpose been mentioned. On this very Sunday evening I was out of Holywell, aad my wife was unable to leave the house; it wis therefore impossible for either of us to be guilty of what we have then been charged with. Most complete testimony can be brought at any time to bear out this statement. The attendance of the week so bitterly complained of was 53. whereas for the following week it was only 53.1, that is, but one-tenth of an attendance more. A differ- ¡ ence/in itself not likely to mark out the week so prominently from the rest as to call for any serious explanation. To prevent any unfair con- clusions to which the public may have been led it may be well here to note that only two boys and two girls attended from the Infant School on the Monday morning, all of whom were of age to be drafted.—Yours, &c., Holywell, March 8th, 1880. D. PIBBCE. THE ELECTION OF GUARDIANS. DEAR SIR,—Lest it should be forgotten in the turmoil of the General Election, I beg, with your permission, to remind the ratepayers of the ap* proaching time to nominate new guardians. In Carnarvon there has for some time been a desire that there should be some new blosd introduced into the board, With a view of avoiding tfaemany irregularities which have of late taken place. The ratepayers should show their sense of indignation at the jobbery of the "oontract question" by electing new members who would insist upon the business of the board being done in an upright and straight-forward manner, without respect to a man's religious convictions or relationship with any members of the board. I hope those that are first in their complaints against the present board will loose no time in organising a new list of can- didates, and making such arrangements' as will lead to their return. I should be pleased to know from any corres- pondent whether it would be competent for any committee that may take the matter, up, to sub- scribe towards defraying the cost of the election. There are many who would generously subscribe towards this in order to avoid being taunted "With "throwing the parish to the expense" of an elec- tion.—Yours, &c., AN INTENDING CANMDATB. THE CARNARVON TOWN COUNCIL AND THE NEWS-ROOM. SIR,—The reasonable application made to the abeve council to allow the use of the corporation gas gratis to the useful institution attached to the Guild Hall, has been again rejected. Mr Alder- man G. Rees, true to his Tory instincts that the world is governed by phrases," has made the dis- covery that the grant would be illegal. He will allow me to doubt his dictum and until fortified by chapter and verse, I refuse to believe fit the truth of his assertion. Had it been illegal I imagine the Town Clerk would have been the first to enlighten the members upon the point. Does it occur to Mr Rees that it is illegal to allow the use of gas for Eisteddfod committaes, Bible So- ciety, and other meetings ? Whence comes" this newborn zeal for legality in a matter which does no injury to anyone, and in erniiection with an institution which is destined to be of considerable use and benefit to the rising generation ? It may come under the category of the epithets which the worthy alderman applied to temperance reformers some time since at the same board, which places him at once beyond the pale of practical reason- ing. We certainly require reforming at the council. Men of diffei ent stamp, and having regard to what is right and proper, independent of party, might bring forth different results -?■ Yours* &c., IMPROVEMENT. March 7, 1880. THE WATER SUPPLY OF fiENLLASr. SIR,—At a public meeting held at Henllan some four years ago, over which air Chambres, of Llys- meirchion, presided, the eminent public services of Dr Pierce were gratefully recognised, and it was resolved to erect, as a testimonial to him, drink- ing fountains in the village, plentifully supplied with water. Mr Foulkes, of Bryn, Henllan, was appointed treasurer, and subscribers were re- requested to send P.O. Orders and cheques to him. The drinking fountains have not been erected. In the course of a discussion in the Denbigh Town Council Chamber last week, Mr Foulkes clumsily asserted that Dr Pierce had "put his foot in" the proposal in question, and the bubscribers would therefore not carry it out. As Mr Foulkes went thus far he will perhaps go furthur, and kindly explain, after studying an elementary grammar for a day or two, why the project was abandoned, and what has been done with the money which was subscribed. How much money was subscribed, and how was it disposed of ? It is a well-known fact that Dr Pierce did not interfere in the mat- ter at all, and that his only desire was to see water brought to the village without respect to any fountains. If Mr Foulkes' "Vanity "will permit him to explain, he will confer a favour on AN OPPONENT OF "ENVY, HATRED, AND ALL UNCHARITABLBNB«S."
Information was received at Dundee on Tuesday, that the barque Strathnaim, of Dundee, bound from London to Melbourne, had been run down on the 13th inst., 37 miles west of Ushant, by the steamer Edith Hough, of Liverpool, which arrived at Malaga on Tuesday. The crew of the Strathnaim, 18 in number, were all lost. The Strathnaim was a wooden vessel, 698 tons, built at Dundee, four years ago. She was commanded by Captain White, of Tayport, who had two sons on board. The remainder of the crew were shipped at London, and mostly belonged to the south of England. As the V- C. was making his eggs-it on Friday an egg-cited man, with a countenance eggspressive of eggscessive eggasperation, hurled an egg at the eye of the eggcellent Judge. Eggceedingly bad aim was taken, and the egg eggsploded eggainst the wall, the contents eggsuding. Eggatraordinary eggcitement ensued, and the man was eggspeditiously arrested and placed before the V. C. for eggsaminatibn. He did not eggsculpate himself, and' the Judge eggspeditiously put an eggstinguisher on him, and eggsiled him from his presence to eggspiate his crime by his eggsertions at Holloway. After which there was a general Eggsodus. The act was considered in the light of an ora-tion. We are glad to learn that the Church Missionary Society have received, via Zanzibar, reassuring intelligence regarding the" safety of the Nyanza mission. Messrs Pearson, Stokes, and Copplestone left Rubaga, King Mtesa's capital, for the south in June, but did not get clear of Uganda till August 28, and only reached Kagci on the south shore of Lake Victoria on September 24. Mr Pearson was to return to Rubaga at once, but the other two went on to Uyui. There appears good reason to believe that King Mtesa's temporary hostility was mainly due to his suspicion that the reinforcements sent to join the mission by way of the Nile were secret emissaries of the Egyptain Government, of whose encroachments he is in great dread. Mr Hormuzd Rassam's account of his recent explorations in Nineveh and Babylon was read at a meeting of the Victoria Institute last Monday. The printed copy is a lengthy pro- duction, largely taken up with a description of the different routes from England to Babylon, with personal details, and edifying comments on the fulfilment of prophecy. One sentence, however, deserves to have as much publicity given to it as possible, and we trust that the point|o £ view which it represents will be earnestly advocated in high quarters. The discovery of this obelisk [of Assur. nazir-pal] and the large Sardanapalus cylinder makes me very often wonder how an explorer might miss a most valuable record of the past by merely digging a foot or even a few inches from either side of it; and this fact leads me to hope that, before England abandons the researches in Ass.t ri i and Babylonia altogether, where she has been so marvellously successful in her explorations, she will have the mounds of Koyunjik and Nim- roudjlaid bare that is to say, have them thoroughly examined, by beginning at one end and finishing at the other. I feel confident that if .the work was continued for the next hundred years in the same style in which we have been carrying it on for the past 35 years, still, at the end, we might perhaps miss a relic which would be ruott invaluable to both religious and scientific research*?' a