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NOTES OF THE WELK. The Permissive Bill advocates in Wrexham have agaiu triumphed iu the local police court, thanks to those magistrates who appeared there to act upon their suggestions. The battle of the Walnut Tree Hotel license application has become an annual one for some years, and has bU engaged the attention of the Good Templar fraternity that their despicable system of espionage has been applied almost exclusively to that house. When the application was last year submitted to the Bench asd refused by a majority of one magistrate, it was accepted as an indication of success this year. If there were then no justifiable objections to it, there were certainly none in the evidence which was produced on Monday. The Permissive Bill advocates, we will do them the justice of say- ing, ha.ve relieved the ordinary policemen from putting in an appearance in court to speak to the conduct of the hotel. They spared no trouble in hunting up "cases" likely to damage the character of the house and its ocoupier. Their statements were therefore not likely to be shorn of anything that would influence the Justices on their behalf. But as the leading advocate proved to the court, there was not a particle of evidence to show that Mr Wilson conducts his bouse loosely or tolerates drunkenness. On the other hand, the scrutinising inquiries of the teetotal witnesses having so lamentably failed, is positive proof that the Walnut Tree" is conducted in a most satisfactory manner. Upon this point alone the opponents to the application based their chances of frustrating the ends of justice. There was no denial to the fact that there is an absolute necessity in the populous district of Rhosddu that spirituous liquors should be retailed there for the public convenience. With such evidence before them, it is astonishing bow those magistrates who vetoed: the application could have formed their conclusion. The time has not yet arrived for the abolition of public-houses, and until it does,—if ever—our duty is to see that those who hold the licenses are respectable and trustworthy persons. If we im- prove the status of the publicans, we shall indirectly diminish drunkenness; and to give a respectable beer-seller a spirit license is to make his position more important and of greater worth, and con- sequently to increase the responsibilities of his office. Some of our local magistrates think other wise, and prefer pleasing ill advised teetotallers to taking a statesmanlike view of the question before them. To those of our readers who attended the lectures by the Rector of Marchwiel on the Assyrian dis- coveries, the announcement of the death of Mr George Smith will be received with considerable regret. The greatest of Assyrialogists, as he was styled by one of the best German cuneiform scholars, died at Aleppo, on the 19th ult, in the flower of his days. He was born on March 26th, 1840. of humble but estimable parentage, it is said in the parish of Chelsea. His parents gave him the best education they could afford, but he used to say that his schooling was over by his loth year. He was apprenticed soon after leaving school to learn the art and mystery of bank-note engraving and printing. Before he bad served out half his seven years it was no uncommon practice with him to snatck a large slice from his dinner hour for a stolen visit to the British Museum. Here he became deeply interested in the Assyrian sculp- tures and inscriptions, and obtained leave to make casts of some of the cunel slabs ami tablets for the purposes of study. Through the kind intervention of Sir Henry Rawlinson, who saw that he was a pushing young scholar, Mr Smith was engaged by the Trustees of the British Museum to assist in the work of preparing a new volume IIf the Cuneiform Inscriptions of Western Asia. He suosequently made important contributions to textual Assyriology which include papers with the cuneiform texts subjoined, printed in the volumes of "Transactions" of the Society of Biblical Arcbssdogy. It was in. the same" Transations" that the first fragment of the Chaldean account of the Deluge was printed in a translation, but it attracted no attention whatever until 1872, when Mr George Smith's name sudJenly became a house- hold word. In the following spring he started on bis first mission of exploration to Nineveh in search of an important missing fragment of this extra- ordinary text. He found it and returned. But this sudden termination of the enterprise did not satisfy everybody, and in the next spring be went out agaiu under the auspices of the British Museum to ransack the trenches he had already opened, but which he had been compelled to abandon. This mission turned cut a great success, although treasures were still left behind which he had hoped to bring home, as part of the spoils of that third and last expedition which has just terminated so fatally. The good folks of Devonshire have been indulg- ing in a. laugh at the expense of one of their members of Parliament who has just got bis own foot into some mud which he had diligently scraped together for a political opponent to tumble in. Sir Thomas Acland, who represents North Devon in the Liberal interest, in a speech in Parliament near the close of the session drew a picture of the sad persecutions with which wicked Church Tories vex mild and long-suffering Dissenters. In his part of Devonshire, he Said, property was held under restrictions which prevented Dissenting tenants from worshipping God according to their con>cienceS. True; and Sir Thomas, the Liberal member, was of all men the one who might best have kno^n such to be the case. For, fOl tll with Sir Thomas Aland's own leases are brought to light, and there, eure enough, is a clause which Bays that the tenant "shall not let, assign, or otherwise part with the possession of the said premises, or any part thereof, or permit the same to be used or ocsupied as a couventicle or place of meeting for the purposes of religious worship, or as a shop or other place for the sale of beer, cider, or any other spirituous liquor whatsoever, or carry on or permit to be carried ou therein any danger- ous or offensive trade or business whatever." These leases are signed by Sir Thomas's own hand. So we have the amusing exhibition of this stout champion of Dissent pronibitiug the existence on his estates of couveuticles, beer-shops, or auy offensive trade,"—these institutions being men- tioned together in one sentence and all alike iorbiuden. The worthy Baronet's Nonconformist patrons are of course greatly incensed at the exposure of their representative's inconsistency, and have not beeu put into a better temper by a long letter of explanation which he has written, in which he not only backs out ol the position winch tie took up in the House of Commons against the Church, but also adds something that tells to the discredit of Dissent, viz., that in some in the West, young persons have beeu I hindered from presenting themselves for confirm- ation by a threat of dismissal from their situations." How Sir Thomas will make peace agaiu with his Dissenting constituents after tuis double offence, we do not know. But our advice to him is not to pay court to Dissenters and Radicals any more, but to be true to the Church of which he professes himself a member. Then he will be independent of the applause or censure of Nonconformist Church-haters, and will be in every respect a happier and more useful man.


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