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rr 0 W IT TALK.

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SUMMARY Of PASSING EVENTS. A CASE of considerable importance to the public at the present time, when disease amongst cattle is so prevalent, has been decided before a London magistrate. Francis Cousins, a sausage maker, residing in Hackney, was brought up at Worship- street, charged by the Medical Officer of Health and the Inspector of Nuisances with preparing for sale meat which was unfit' for food. The defen- dant denied that it was his intention to sell the meat, asserting that it was only used for pigs' food. The magistrate, however, took a different view of the matter, and fined the defendant £ 5, with costs. MR. CHARLES SPRAGUE, the surgeon who was charged with attempting to poison his wife and her mother and father, and a servant-maid, at Ashburton, has taken his trial at the Devon Assizes. It will be remembered that the four persons named suffered severely from a presumed poison, afber partaking of a rabbit and steak pie, p into which, it was suggested) the prisoner put atrophine. It was contended in defence, and supported in evidence that there was no proof that he had mixed the poison with the food. The jury, after a few minutes consideration, acquitted the prisoner, who was warmly congratulated by his friends on the verdict. IN America the work of reconstruction goes on apace. The new President is pardoning all those who are desirous of submitting to the new order of things. Almost all the men of note in the South have prudently made submission to the Govern- ment, and taken the oaths of allegiance. Several generals have been released upon these terms. The only prisoners of any note who are now awaiting their trials are Mr. Stephens, formerly Vice-President of the Confederacy; Mr. Regan, who was Postmaster of the South; and the officer who held the post of commandant of the Con- federate prison at Andersonville. The soldiers of both North and South who have returned from the wars are unsettled. Their business habits have been forgotten, and there is a thirst for ex- citement. It is reported that returned soldiers and civilians have been fighting in Philadelphia, Chicago, and other Northern cities, and through- out Tennessee the Confederate paroled men have been carrying on a kind of social warfare. In Charleston the New York Zouaves mutinied in consequence of the late disturbances with the negroes. The regiment has been disarmed, the officers have been sent to gaol, and many of the men are placed in durance vile. These are some of the difficulties that the new Government have to contend against. Meanwhile there is a deter- mination to carry out freedom to the fullest extent. Mr. Secretary Stanton has issued a decree placing white and coloured people on the same footing as regards military restrictions and punishments, and nullifying such as have been contrary to this rule. THE unfortunate accidents which have over- taken the Atlantic cable during the process of laying, have been received with one universal feeling of regret; a regret for the non-success of ao great and important an undertaking, and a sympathy for the enterprising men who have at- tempted to carry out so great a scheme with their money, time, and scientific knowledge. THE French Government appears to be satis- fied with the result of the municipal elections, which, for the most part, have been against the Powers that be. The Minister of the Interior, however, praises the" admirable tranquillity" with which they were conducted, and adds that the Government does not regard any party as vanquished or victors," but receives all re-elected or newly-elected with the same cordiality. The Official proceedings at these elections monly regarded as a proof that the Emperor of the French desires to extend further political liberties to the-nation. AT the opening of the Portuguese Parliament the King was able to congratulate the assembly on the success of his mediation between Great Britain and Brazil. He was also in a position to pronounce the financial condition of the country to be satisfactory. But that which will please philanthropists the most is the announcement made by his Majesty that a strict law will be brought forward for the sanction of the represen- tatives to abolish slavery throughout the Portu- guese dominions. The calm and steady progress of this nation'in material wealth,-political free- dom, and general civilisation is something to re- joice over. As far as home politics are concerned, there is always a lull after a General Election, more espe- cially if there be a long vacation before the new Parliament meets; but we may refer to a circum- stance which has led Mr. Gladstone to read a severe lecture on social morality to a class of persons whom we think have been brought fairly under his lash. During the contest for South Lancashire a clergyman stated that the Chan- cellor of the Exchequer had built a church at Liverpool, which brought him a revenue of .£700 a year, whilst the minister received the paltry sum of < £ 120 for doing the work. Mr. Gladstone when informed of it first replied by telegram that it was totally untrue, bat by next post transmitted the following letter,raferring first to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for the truthfulness of his denial, and continued:—" I think that grave censure attaches to those who, by speech or writing, pub- lish on the authority of rumour, or any anony- mous authority, statements injurious to" private character, and who hold up to blame matters of personal and private conduct without having had the courtesy—I might say the decency—to give the person inculpated a prior opportunity of ex- planation and defence. Bad in all cases, it appears to me that these proceedings become worse when thev are carried on for political purposes at the time of an election. It is possible that the heat of the party or that the exclusive devotion to particular and limited objects which so effectually closes the mind against the view of broader and larger ones, may have led to the course of which I complain. And if it be due to inconsiderateness only, I shall very gladly forget it." This is manly and straight- forward, and will be appreciated by all parties. BUT speaking of politics reminds us of a melan- choly circumstance connected with a member of the Government—Mr. Frederick Peel, son of the late and brother of the present Sir Robert, known as a hard-working man as Secretary to the Trea- sury. He anticipated his re-election for Bury as certain; and when a strong opposition was in- augurated against him, he entered into the excite- ment of the proceedings, though in a condition of health utterly unsuited to such work. He was de- feated, and afterwards fell seriously ill. He was most diligently and tenderly nursed by his wife- the granddaughter of the late poet Shelley. This devoted lady, only in her thirtieth year, in consequence of her over exertions, was seized with diphtheria and died, to the inexpressible grief of her hasband, who, recovering under her care, is again prostrated by the unhappy affliction. It is said that he will retire from public life altogether, and already have the political prophets suggested who shall take his place. Let us hope, however, that Mr. Peel will submit to the wise decrees of Providence, and again take his part in the affairs of the nation, whether as a Government officer or in the Opposition side of the House. IN regard to the late Volunteer review at Wimbledon, his Royal Highness the Commander- in-Chief has addressed a letter to the Secretary of War, expressing a general approval of the effi- ciency displayed by the volunteers, but avoiding unnecessary flattery. He makes some suggestions which the several corps that took part in it will do well to lay to heart. He expresses regret that the volunteers upon. such occasions do not put forth all their strength, and that as a rule they do not arrive on the ground at an earlier period of the day, the consequence of which being that the evolutions are delayed to so late an hour as to be performed in undue hurry. We can endorse every word of this, for the Duke of Cambridge, with his ordinary punctuality, was on the ground at the appointed time, five o'clock, whilst not a corps was present, and fully an hour elapsed before one appeared. His Royal Highness was exceed- ingly patient, bat, as his report states, in conse- quence of this delay, everything was hurried. Let it not be for a moment supposed, however, that the nation at large is not proud of the noble volunteers. Every week we have evidence of their efficiency. At Shoeburyness the volunteer artil- lery have displayed a competency equal to any paid force in the world, whilst the Cheshire volun- teers, a few days ago, were reviewed by Colonel M'Murdo on the Chester racecourse, and their military proceedings, including a mimic fight and the construction of a pontoon bridge across the Dee, was acknowledged by the reviewing officer to be equal to anything that could be performed by regular soldiers. THE disease which has carried off so many cattle in London appears to be extending, and, according to the last accounts, it has broken out in the south of Scotland. From instructions issued by the Privy Council, it appears that the disease is analogous to that which has recently carried off so many thousands of cattle in Russia, Austria, and the eastern parts of Europe; and though amenable to medical treatment, the Privy Council recommend that diseased animals should be at one destroyed and buried, and that new stock should by every new purchaser be kept by them- selves for a few days-made to perform quaran- tine, in fact-before being placed with healthy cattle. The remedy proposed by Professor Gam- gee, who declares that there are "very few cases of indirect contagion," is, that "farmers and cow- keepers must not allow diseased cattle to approach their stock." A letter from the Privy Council contains a complete code of instructions for the treatment and the detection of the disease, to which we would refer our readers. It is perhaps useful to tell alarmists that there is little chance of this disease affecting the milk. One of the first symptoms 01 the disorder is the "total loss of the supply of milk, and medical men state that it is almost impossible that the lactean liquid could be affected. It is further stated that the disease cannot be communicated to human beings. At the same time every precaution should be used to prevent the spread of the disease.


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