——— ——— —————— CURRENT SPORT. Considering the admirable indifference with which Mr. Jephson, the Surrey captain, treated the out- break of bad manners on the part of the crowd at Sheffield last week (remarks a writer in the Morning Post) it would be unwise not to follow his example in referring to a discreditable, if somewhat trivial, occurrence. At the same time, without wishing to labour the poir t, one feels bound to protest against what appears to be a growing delusion on the part of many people, namely, that the first and last duty of the players generally and severally is simply to please the noisier and mure ignorant section of those who have paid their money to watch the match. Mr. Jephson, in full accord with the umpires, whose duty it is to decide points of the sort, found the murky atmosphere at Brat-tiall-lane so abominable as to render cricket impossible for a time. The crowd, conceiving doubtless, that they were being robbed of a fraction of their sixpences, howled disapproval, not only when the teams were waiting in the pavilion for the light to improve, but f also while Mr. Jephson, under very trying condi- tions, was continuing his most admirable innings. So loud was the clamour that Mr. Ernest Smith, the Yorkshire captain, chivalrously offered to withdraw his team from the field until the shouting roughs around the ropes should have quieted down. Mr. Jephson, however, had no wish to punish the crowd; he preferred to punish the bowling to the tune of 109 and meantime the uproar had ceased I At the Oval again, on Saturday after- noon, it was necessary for Mr. Alcock and other officials, supported by police officers, to visit a certain part of the ground and warn a few loud-lunged sportsmen who were guying Mr. E. JR. Wilson, as he played a steady, stonewall game, which enabled his side to turn almost certain defeat into a draw. Utter ignorance of all but the most obvious points in the game is probably at the root of these occasional exhibitions of larrikinism." Several first-class cricket matches were brought to a definite issue on Saturday. At Hull, Yorkshire inflicted a crushing defeat upon Hampshire by an in- nings and 271 runs, Rhodes having the fine record for the match of 14 wickets for 66 runs. Middlesex sustained their fifth reverse of the season at Ton- bridge, where the all-round form of Mr. J. R. Mason had a deal to do with Kent's victory by 152 tuns while at Worcester the home team beat Leicestershire, after an exciting finish, by 10 runs ,only. Thanks to a fine contribution of 120 by Mr. r. L. Taylor, Cambridge University just escaped defeat by Surrey at Kennington Oval, the home side having nine wickets in hand, and requiring but 29 runs. A capital all-round display enabled Lan- cashire to beat Somerset at Taunton by an innings and 17 runs, but the match at Eastbourne between Sussex and Essex was left drawn, the latter, with five wickets in hand, requiring 38 runs. Meadagainbowled with great success for the visiting side. No play was possible at Glossop, the Derbyshire and Warwick- shire macch having to be abandoned as a draw. At .Lord's the West Indians provided some exciting cricket. Not only did they avert the expected innings defeat from the Gentlemen of the M.O.C., but they put the latter in a. second rime to obtain 107 runs, five wickets going down in the process. This was due to a remarkable ninth wicket stand from the Colonials by W. L. Constantine and Burton, no fewer than 162 being added in 65 minutes, the amateur compiling 113. The Scottish A. A. Championships were decided at Powderhal Grounds, Edinburgh, on Saturday in fine weather. The features of the day were the triple win by W. H. Welsh and the dual honours secured by J. Paterson. Details: 100 Yards-Final heat: W. H. Welsh, Edinburgh University, 1; J. McLean, Black- heath H., 2; and R. L. Watson, Longport H., 3. Won by half a yard, a yard between second andthird. Time,10-35sec. Two Hundred and Twenty Yards: W. H. Welsh, Edinburgh University, 1; J. McLean, Blackheath H., 2; and R. L. Watson, Longport, 3. Seven ran. W(yn by two yards. Time, 23sec. Quarter Mile: W.H.Welsh, Edinburgh University, 1; R. L. Watson, Longport, 2; and R. Halkett, Bedford A.C., 3. Won by six yards. Time, 51 3-5sec. Half-Mile J. Paterson, Watsonians, 1; R. A. Hay, Edinburgh, 2; and H. C. D. Paton, Edinburgh Harriers, 3. Won easily. Time, Imin. 59 3-5sec. One Mile: J. Paterson, Watsonians, 1; J. C. Macdonald, Edin- burgh H., 2; and G. Stevenson, Ayr F.C., 3. Won by two yards. Time 4min. 37 2-5sec. 120 Yards Hurdles R. S. Stronach, Glasgow Academicals, I; and G. C. Anderson, Edinburgh University, 2. Won by a yard. Time, 16 4-5sec. High Jump: J. B. Milne, Dundee, 5ft. 9in., 1; and 1-t. G. Murray, Clydesdale EL, 5ft,. Sin. 2. Broad Jump: H. Barr, Clydesdale II., 21ft. 10in., 1 and G. C. Anderson, Edinburgh University, 20ft. Sin. 2. Throwing the Hammer: M. N. Mclnnes, Edinburgh University, 108ft. lOin., 1 and D. J. Macrae, Aberdeen University, 106ft. 4in. 2. Putting the Weight: D. J. Macrae, Aberdeen University, 38ft. lOin., 1; and M. N. Mclnnes, Edinburgh Uni- vesity, 38ft. nin., 2. Four Miles Race: A. R. Gibb, Watsonians, 1 D. W. Mill, Clydesdale H., 2; and J. Ranker, Bedford A.C., 3. Won by six yards; eight yards between second and third. Time, 20min. olsec. The annual Naval and Military Athletic gathering was brought to a conclusion at Portsmouth on Saturday. Lieut. E. Grace, R.N. (son of Dr. W. G. Grace) won the 100 yards and quarter mile races for officers; Sub.-Lieut. Forbes, R.N., was success- ful in a two mile bicycle races for officers; Lieut. Macdonald, R.A,, took the obstacle race; and Royal Marine Artillery were easy winners of the tug-of-war. In the Five Mile Bicycle Race Championship Army and Mavy, Southern District, Corporal Waterman, R.M.A., beat Sub.-Lieut. Stone, R.N. (2) and Engine- ;room Artificer Charnock (3) after a smart race; and the Half-Mile Championship Flat Race was won by Able-seaman Cotton, H.M.S. Duke of Wellington. On the Grangetawn track near Middlesbrough, on Saturday, before a large attendance, the first batch of this year's N.C.U, Championships were decided in fine weather, with the following results: One Mile Professional: Final heat: F. W. Chinn, Midland A.C., 1; J. Platt-Betts, Crystal Palace, 2; and H. Howard, Putney, 3. Won by two lengths. Time, 2min. 28 4-5sec. An objection against Chinn for running out at the corners was dismissed. Quarter Mile Amateur: Final heat: A. S. Ingram, Polytechnic C.C., 1 J. W. Long- staff, Sunderland, 2; S. Holloway, Midland C. and A. C. finished first, but was disqualified for boring. Time, 33sec. One Mile Amateur, final heat: W. Edmunds, Bristol, 1; T. Childs, Sunder- land, 2 and E. Smith, Sunderland, 3. Won on the post, a bad third. Time, 2min. 43 4-5sec. Quarter- mile Professional, final heat: J. Camp, London, 1; and H. Reynolds, Dublin, 2. Won by 2ft. Time. 32'3-5sec. Five Miles Professional: H.B.Howard Putney, 1; J. Platt-Betts, Crystal Palace, 2 and H Reynolds, Dublin, 3. Seven started. Won easily Time, 13min. 31 l-5sec. The northern lawn tennis championship meeting was successfully concluded at Aigburth, Liverpool, em Saturday, when the challenge rounds were decided flfore a record crowd. E. R. Allen made a big to wrest the Singles Championship from Smith, the Stroud player only retaining the title aftel a long 8trrnggle. In the Ladies' Championship another good contest was witnessed, Miss Martin, who had but to win on this occasion to become abs& lute possessor of the cup, succumbing to Mrs. Hill- yard. The Doubles challenge round was also keenh fought and resulted in a win for the brothers Doherty, Hillyard and Cazalet playing up well against the champions. The only tame match ol the day was that for the All-England Mixed Doubles Championship, Cazalet and Miss Robb beirl<' verv 'beaten by H. L. Doherty and Miss C. Cooper. ° On Saturday Mr. Quy Crosland, of Huddersfield. and Mr. E. A. Lassen, of Ravenscliffe, Bradford, met in the final of 36 holes for the amateur golf championship of Yorkshire. It was soon seen that the two players were very evenly matched, and a cloae and interesting contest was witnessed by a targe gathering of onlookers. Mr. Lassen had the «etter start in the first round, and won the first hole, with a brilliant two at the short third hole Crosland squared, and at the eighth he was 2 up, Lassen being fclrfi lTi aPPr°aching and putting. Crosland failed oaaiy at the ninth, and the match turned 1 up in hia w^i r,etriainder of the round was very even, Out at the finish Lassen was 1 up. The second round was an even closer match, Lassen finishing in 81. There was never more than a hole between the player* until Lassen won both the 13th and 14th. Hisoppo- nent, howevor, got tl'Etll back by winning the 15th and 16th, &nd the 17th being halved in 5 the match was all square with the 18th to play. A sensational 2 by Lassen ended the game in his favour, he win- ning by 1 up. The score fairly represented the cha- racter of the play. Lassen drove a long ball, but Crosland approached very accurately. Rainy weather again interfered with cricket on Monday. The matches at Lord's between M.C.C. and Ground and London County, at Kennington Oval, between Surrey and Oxford University, and at Bir- mingham, between Warwickshire and Gloucester- shire, could not be begun at all. At Derby, Derby- shire took first innings against Yorkshire, but, on a soft pitch, could do little, and were all out for 69. The visitors also found run-getting difficult, and at the close of the first day's play had lost seven wickets for 101. At Nottingham, Notts on Monday opened a match with Lancashire, and com- piled the moderate score of 135, while Lancashire, when play ceased for the day, had got 93 at the cost of two wickets. Middlesex visited Leicester to play Leicestershire, who batted first, and, in the time available for play on Monday, obtained 154 for six wickets. At Brighton no beginning could be made in the match between Sussex and Cambridge Uni- versity until late on Monday afternoon, when the home team went in and hit up 122 at the cost of two wickets. Cricket all over the country was free from rain 011 Tuesday. At Lord's, Alec Hearne, in scoring 142 for the M.C.C. against London County, compiled his first century of the season. Batting first on a soft wicket, Marylebone ran up a total of 353, but the visitors collapsed badly before the bowling of Alec Hearne and Young, all being out for 55. Sussex gained a big advantage over Cambridge University, at Brigh- ton, as after scoring 345, they closed their innings, and then dismissed the Light Blues for 132, Bland's bowling proving very deadly. Yorkshire, thanks to a timely stand by Tunnicliffe and Rhodes, led Derbyshire on the first innings by 126. The Derby wicket was by no means difficult, but the home batsmen could do little with the destructive deliveries of Rhodes and Haigh, and had to acknowledge de- feat by an innings and 24 runs. At Birmingham, Warwickshire scored 285 against Gloucestershire, the batting of the brothers Quaife being the feature of the innings. The visitors lost two wickets in com- piling 94. At Kennington Oval, V. F. S. Crawford hit up 121 for Surrey against Oxford University, this being his first century of the season for the county. Surrey declared at 361, and then dis- missed two of the Universitv batsmen for 92.
THE SLOUGH ACCIDENT. The Queen sent a quantity of fine grapes and the freshest strawberries from the Royal gardens at Frogmore on Saturday to the Windsor Infirmary for the passonge-ra who were injured in the recent acci- dent at Slough. The fruit, with which the patients were greatly delighted, was distributed by the matron and nurses among the sufferers, each of whom re- ceived a basket of strawberries and plate of grapes, Miss Russell Davis, of Balham, who sustained a broken collar-bone and arm and serious injuries to her head, as well as severe mental shock, was taken home 3n Sunday in an ambulance saloon. All the other patients remaining at Slough and in Windsor In- firmary are making satisfactory progress. The funeral of Mr. Edwin B. Jackson, who was killed in the collision at Slough, took place on Saturday after- noon. The neighbourhood of Mr. Jackson's resi- dence in Southampton-street, Strand, was thronged with crowds of persons engaged in Covent-garden r Market. The interment took place at St. Pancraii Cemetery at Finchley.
I WAR OFFICE CONTRACTS. At Tuesday's sitting of the House of Commons Committee, Lord Deerhurst, colonel commanding the 2nd Volunteer Battalion Worcestershire Regi- ment, stated that his regiment sent a company to South Africa, and a contract was made with Messrs. Samuel Brothers for the supply of boots, clothing, and accoutrements. On February 5 he went to Aldershot and saw the boots. He never saw such things he could put his finger through the sole of most of them. The soles were made up with shreds of leather; there were no pegs or screws in them at ail. He complained to the con- tractors, who sent a man down to Aldershot to in- spect the boots, and he believed that 150 pairs out of 226 were condemned. The contractors had pro- mised that they would supply the regulation Govern- ment boots. From other evidence given it appeared that the contractors obtained the boots from Messrs. Cave (Limited), Rushton, Northamptonshire, and paid 6s. 9d. per pair for them. The committee ad- journed.
I THE ASHANTI RISING. I ADVANCE OF RELIEVING FORCE. The final advance to open up communication wib, Coomassie was to begin (says a Prahsu telegram on Sunday), sufficient supplies having at last been col- lected. On the road from Ashanti to Kwahon an three villages which together can muster about 2000 fighting men. The natives report that this people have taken to fetish worship and have pledged them- selves to help the Ashantis. About 360 men of the West African Regiment left Prahsu on Sunday under Colonel Burroughs, and a 75 millimetre gun under Sergeant-Major Bosher, 01 tho; West. African Frontier Force, for Futi-isu. A hundred and fifty men of the West African Frontiei Forcq have also been landed at Cape Coast Castle.
MURDER AND SUICIDE AT I HORNSEY. On Saturday afternoon a murder and suicide were committed at Hornsey. About eight weexs ago two men belonging to the labouring class, named Barcham and Bette, took lodgings at a house in Pakeman- street, Hornsey-road. The supposed murderei was Alfred Barcham, aged 45, and the murderec man, Richard Frederick Betts, aged 23. Tht men occupied separate rooms. So far as can bi ascertained, Betts had returned home from hi< ordinary work in a very tired condition, and was lying down when Barcham entered the room. Sud- denly the reports of three revolver shots were heard coming from the room in which Betts was resting. Those in the house at the time went to the room at once and found both men lying dead, the floor and bed beinp stained with blood. A revolver lay on the floor. The police were sent for, and the police surgeon for the division at once pronounced life in both cases to be extinct. Examination showed that Betts had been shot through the mouth and the right side, while the other man had -blowa out his own brains.
ENGLISH FRUIT PROSPECTS. The crop of Englillh fruit and vegetables coming to Covent Garden promises to be unusually abundant this year. The quantity of gooseberries already in the market is so great that the sale prices are lower than they have been for many years. Kent straw- berries have begun to arrive in London, besides which the other day so many came up from South- ampton that prices dropped one-half. The supply will be regular and daily expanding for the next few weeks. The price already reached is so low as to render further importation of the French fruit un- profitable. When the heigh; of the harvest arrives it is anticipated that strawberries will be obtainable at an unusually low figure.
WHAT ARE THE CUCKOO'S NOTES? What are the notes of the cuckoo, which just now may be heard in every suburb and at almost any time of day? A correspondent of the Daily News, who writes from Finchley, finds, by the aid of a re- cently-tuned piano, that they are F natural and D flat, and, assuming there to be more than one cuckoo in the neighbourhood, finds no variation in the notes of different bitds. The experiment of find- ing these notes on the piano was, however, com- menced more than a month ago, when, he declares, the cuckoo was singing F sharp and D natural. This leads him to believe there is considerable meaning in the following old rhyme about the cuckoo: In April, Come he will. In the month of May, He comes to stay. In the month of June, Sings out of tune. In July, Prepares to fly. In August, Go he must. In Beethoven's pastoral symphony, Scene am Bach," the cuckoo's notes are given as D natural to B flat-two tones lower than the correspondent's cuckoos are now singing. It is significant that the distance between the two notes is the same in every case.
LONDON MONASTIC VAULTS. While workmen were digging the foundations for commercial buildings to replace old tenement houses in Ireland-yard, a narrow passage near Doctors'- commons, they came upon several vaults literally packed with human bones. The mouldings of an Early English window and a well-preserved Norman column and capital, of which the London and Middlesex Archreological Society has taken drawings, were also discovered. The human remains have been handed over to the City Medical Officer, Dr. W. S. Saunders, who gave it as his opinion that the remains, which were those of about 1000 people, dated from the 13th century. The site is supposed to be that of an old churchyard, and at one time it may have been included in the grounds of the monastery of Black- friars, which stood near at hand.
THE LATE DR. HEAP. In some reminiscences of the late Dr. Swinnerton Heap, "Musicus," writing in the Slieffield lndepev- dent, alludes to the fact that Dr. Heap was con- ductor of the Birmingham Festival, and says he tested the elder members of the festival chorus prior to their inclusion in the crack body of the Mid- lands. admitting none if they were not up to the high standard which the doctor fixed. Musical know- ledge counted for nothing if the voice was lacking. I hear (says the writer) that some of the old members were tried with their part in a chorus from the Messiah "—to wit, Their sound is gone out." This would almo3t indicate a sense of humour in the examiner, but it is open to doubt whether the humour would be relished by those who had little sound to emit. The suggestion was certainly more pointed than polite.
RUSH FOR WEALTH. It is estimated that from 50,000 to 60,000 men and women-most of whom are to be disappointed-will land at Cape Nome this summer in the mad rush for gold. Yet the whole coast and the vast tundra in- land is a treeless, moss-covered waste. Not a tree is in sight, and in most places not even a shrub," says the St. Paul Globe. Altogether it is a bleak and for- bidding land, and its gold deposits will probably D exhausted this season, and then the interest will be transferred to some other district, for some folks, like these gold-seekers, can be fooled all the time."
A PSEUDO-WORKMAN'S HEAVY HAUL. A workman, generally asserting that he is electric light," or gas," has just been going about the West-end of London to considerable profit. Gaining admission to houses and flats on thd pretext indicated (he carries a bag of tools, all complete) he uses his opportunity to annex jewellery. The Mail declares that some 20 robberies are down to his credit, and that he has had about £ 10,000 worth of jewellery, not one item of which has been traced.
Tm: dead body of a fashionably-dressed man was on Sunday found in the Warren, Folkestone, with a revolver by his side. Deceased, in whose body there was a bullet wound, is believed to be a visitor, and is about 35 years of age, of medium height, full-faced, with a fair moustache. THE London County Council have decided upon art important public' improvement in St. Luke's, at a "ost of E77,750, providing that the local vestry con- tributes £ 12,500. This is the widening of a narrow ;horoughfare known as Central-street a continuation of the improved Golden-lane, and running parallel with Goswell-road. The improvement would con- siderably relieve the traffic of Goswell-road, and will be discussed ai a meeting of the Vestry very shortly. The General Purposes Committee recommends the outlay if the L.C.C. will lend the 912,500 for 60 years. FOUR torpedo-boat destroyers for the Russian Black Sea Fleet will shortly be launched at the Franco-Belgian shipbuilding yard at Nicolaieff. Two Viennese citizens have made a wager of £ 20C that they will roll a big barrel, containing 150 gallons and weighing 4cwt., from Vienna to Paris in 50 days. A REGIMENT of Highlanders is being organised in Hamilton, Ontario. One company will consist of men all over 6ft. in height. As a means of showing how far the world is from being over-populated, economists assert that the en- tire population of the United States could live com- fortably in the single state of Texas. A COMMISSION of Russia and Roumanian delegates for the purpose of arranging regulations respecting fishing for that, part of the river Dantibe lying within Russian and Roumanian territory, is being held at Odessa. SALT has practically ceased to be imported into Afghanistan from India. Only 62 ca-el loads left Peshawar last year, against 2885 during the previous year. GENERAL DE GALLIFFET, French ex-Minister of War, declares that he has given up public life, never to re-enter it. IT is estimated that the Kaffirs in the diamond mines at Kimberley, South Africa, steal E250,000 worth of diamonds a year. IT takes something like -35 a year to keep a rail- way carriage in proper working order in the British Isles. MR. CHARLES BIRCH CRISP, stockbroker, Angel- court, London, has been selected to contest Oldham along with Mr. Winston Spencer Churchill in the Conservative interest at the General Election. MR. S. POULTER has been appointed mineral mana- ger of the Great Eastern Railway. THERE is, perhaps, no man in the Transvaal, with the exception of the President, whose influence has been greater in recent years than that of Mr. Smuts, Dr. Leyds's successor as State Secretary. Mr. brants, who has barely emerged from the twenties, is a young man whose appearance is at least as unimpressive as his name. Following in the steps of Mr. Schreiner, he was educated at the Cape University and at Cam- bridge, and returned to South Africa a qualified English barrister. His effort to establish a practice in the Cape Courts was almost pathetically futile, and after a period of journalism he migrated to tha Transvaal, where he quickly rose to high office. Mr. Smuts is now one of the most rabid of all Boers, and his hatred of the British as a people is only eclipsed by his detestation of Mr. Cecil Rhodes, his first bene- factor.
? I EPITOME OF NEWS. Seven rats knotted together by their tails and forming what is vulgarly called the King of Rats* were found at Courtalain in France last November, ihis curious occurrence is known to science, but it rarely found. How and why the rats tie themselver together in this way is a mystery; but they are usually nourished by the others. At Altenburg, one of 27 rats is preserved, and others have been found at Bonn, Selinepfenthal, Erfurtb, Frankfort, Lindenau, &c., in Germany. ACCORDING to Mr. R. H. Thurston in Science if the cast portions of the engines for torpedo-boats, motor cars, and fiving machines were made of magnesium- their weights would be halved. Aluminium has already been employed in making light portable dynamos, but magnesium is lighter still, and has greater tenacity. Its cost would fall if there was an increasing demand for it. THE Gardener's Magazine recently bad a photo- graph of the remarkable yews of Bedfont, a quaint village about 13 miles from London on the road betw een Hounslow and Staines. They are cut into the form of peacocks, and according to a tradition, represent two proud ladies who rejected the hand of a local magnate. The yew at Buckland, about a mile from Dover, is mentioned in Doomsday Book, and is over 1000 years old. BONE caves have been discovered at the "Bains Romains," a few miles from Algierg. They contain bones of the rhinoceros, hippopotamus, and flint implements of the mousterian," or leaf-like type of th Qmtternary epoch. The Algerian coast was then very different from what it is now. ^„1T is a peculiar fact that Lord Kitchener gained his first experience as a soldier under the French flag. At the outbreak of the war of 1870 he offered himself aa a volunteer to General Chanzy, com- mander of the army of the Loire. On returning to England, after the fall of Paris, he obtained a com- mission in the Royal Engineers. AT Wavertree, Liverpool, just beyond the tram terminus, there is a curious inscription cut in the wall, Qui non dat quod habet, dtemon infra ridet, 1414," which, ireely translated, means that if a man does not give when he can, the demon below smiles. It appearn (says the Liverpool Daily Post) that at one time this Atone stood above a well, and that all who stooped to drink were admonished not to leave the spot without having given an alms. If they carelessly omitted to do so, a devil, who was chained at the bottom of the well, burst into laughter. THE juice of the green and growing pineapple is accredited in Java, the Philippines, and throughout the Far East generally with being a blood poison of a most deadly nature. It is said to be the substance with which the Malays poison their kreeses and daggers, and also the "finger-nail" poison formerly in use among aboriginal Javanese women almost universally. These women, says Science Siftings, cultivated a nail on each hand, to a long sharp point, and the least scratch from one of these was certain death. THOUGH the comprehensive scheme which is under- stood to be under consideration at Simla for strength- ening the transport available for the use of the army in India is not yet through, a good deal is being done in a quiet way to keep what exists up to at leatit full strength. The last step taken in this desirable direc- tion has been the reengagement by the Government of India of 1500 hired camels, which had accumulated in the Punjaub command in excess of immediate re- quirements. IT is interesting to note at the present moment, when rumours of Sir Richard Conch's retirement are rife, that he was president of the Commission that was appointed to inquire into the charges of gross misgovernment made against the Gaekwar of Baroda, the predecessor of the ruler who is at pre- sent a visitor to our shores. Sir Richard occupied some high positions on the Indian Judicial Bench, and several of his judgments have recently been severely criticised. A reticent man, not given to many words, he was never popular; but his patient and painstaking methods earned him great respect and confidence. TIIE Earl of Ellesmere has again arranged a three days' cricket match to be played in August on the ground of the Worsley Cricket Club, which is but a short distance from his Lancashire seat. His lord- ship's team will include seven or eight well-known county men, and will, as usual, be opposed by Mr. Stanning's eleven or twelve. On Lord Ellesmere's side Lord Brackley, the Hon. Wilfrid Egerton, and Mr. G. Kemp, M.P., who generally assist, will pro- bably be missing, as all three are still engaged in the Transvaal War. BELIEVING that railway carriages are greatly re- sponsible for the spread of consumption, the German Health Department has resolved on making a reform, which is equally needed and would be just as useful in this country. The ceilings of the carriages are to be varnished, and all corners likely to harbour dust are to be abolished. The tapestry is to be of plain material and devoid of embroidery, the favourite haunt of dust and microbes. The cushions will be movable so that they can easily be changed from carriage to carriage, which will enable the floor to be properly kept clean. Sleeping carriages will be dis- infected after each iournev. A CANINE constable has been added to the police force of Dewsbury borough in the shape of a rough- coated Airedale terrier, who nightly goes the rounds with the men. He formerly belonged to a Mr. Williams, but displayed such a predilection for the police force that the owner turned him over to the chief constable, who obtained a collar identifying the animal with the constabulary. He goes abont town all night with the men, visiting them imparti- ally, and recognises none but members of the force in uniform. He recently followed the men to church. IT has been estimated that the usual trade horse costs about 3d. an inch each week for food-that in, it costs as many shillings a week as it stands hands high. The trade horses of London alone are valued at £ 1,500.000, and their food costs almost £ 1,000,000 yearly. The Pickford Company possess the greater number, keeping some 4000 in the stables, while the South-Eastern Railway Company have only 500. The usual price given for a railway horse, when buy- ing, is E60, but the company rarely receives more than £ 10 or R12 for one at their sale of five-year workers. AN ingenious address was recently placed on a letter forwarded to this country from Pietermaritz- burg by a private in the East Surrey Regirflent. The letter bore on the envelope the presentment of a wheel followed by the letter R. Then the picture of a cottage. Beneath was a roughly-drawn bridge to which led a road flanked by trees. Finally, there was the head of a young woman. The postman took the letter rightly to Mr. Wheeler, of Elder Cottage, Bridge-road, Maidenhead. DURING the past year we consumed over 81,000,0001b. of tobacco, or very nearly 21b. per headr and the amount of tobacco introduced into the country was very nearly 9,000,0001b. more than the year before. Sixty years ago we only smoked about 13oz. per head of the population, or some 23,000,0001b. in all, so that the consumption has very nearly quadrupled in the Queen's reign. It is satis- factory to know that English tobacco is absolutely pure, and that the only samples which were adul- terated were smuggled tobacco. THE remains of a widow named Margaret Marsh have just been interred at Workington. She was in her 90th year she had a sister (the mother of the present Vicar of Ennerdale) who lived to be 99 years of age, and another who Jreached 97. Mrs. Marsh was a distant relation of the Australian millionaire Tyson. She was a letter-carrier at Workington for over a quarter of a century. THERE are in France 45,000,000 hens, which, at an average price of two francs 50 centimes per head, represent a value of 112,500,000 francs. One-fifth of the stock is annually consumed as food, and is sold for about 22,500,000 francs, or £ 937,500. THE German Empress is an exceptionally skilful amateur photographer, and she "has a most interest- ing collection of pictures. The Empress takes snap-shots at the Court festivities, and she has secured a photograph of the Crown Prince when he appeared for the first time on parade as a full officer of the, Guards. IT is stated that the object of King Leopold of the Belgians' visit to Gastein is to see the Countess Lonyay (nee Princess Stephanie of Belgium), Ititt daughter, with whom his Majesty's relations are at present very strained. MR. LACEY, secretary of the M.C.C., thinks that to improve fielding—-in which English cricket is palpably inferior to Australian—in this country it ought to be taught at the schools, and that for this purpose there should be more scratch matches and less net practice. THE medical officer for Limehouse says that poverty is responsible, for the low marriage rate of the district last year, which was 14'5 per 1001). spinet 18,4 fer all Lonccm.
I THE KHEDIVE. I HIS HIGHNESS'S THROAT TROUBLE. Placing on one side all sorts of theories which have no sort of foundation, save in imagination and in inference, there is really very little which needs !o be said (remarks the Times correspondent at Port Victoria) with regard to the Khedive's illness beyond that which is contained in the bulletins. The first of them was issued on Saturday over the signatures of Sir Felix Semon, Sir Douglas Powell, Dr. Bankart, and Kautski Bey. It ran thus: "The bacteriological examination has confirmed the diagnois of septic sore throat. His Highness is progressing favourably, and will probably come to town early next week." Monday's bulletin confirmed Saturday's in a nega- tive no less than in a positive way. It was signed only by Dr. Bankart and by Kautski Bey, from which fact it, was an obvious inference that it was not thought necessary to bring down the specialists, and it ran thus: The Khedive has passed a very fair night. His temperature is lower and both the local and general symptoms have improved." Beyond that there was really nothing to say except that Colonel the Hon. W. Caririgton had gone up to London, that the Khedive's brother, Prince Mahomet Ali, went up to London on Saturday night with Sir Rennell Rodd and returned on Sunday, and that a Marine sentry guarded the royal yacht from all intrusion. Colonel the Hon. W. Carington returned to Port Victoria on Sunday evening. The Khedive (said a message sent off late on Sunday evening) is convalescent, the fever having left him. He has been able to pass most of the day up and dressed, He is in good spirits, his appetite is good, and he sleeps well. The Queen does not wish his High- ness to be hurried. In answer to an inquiry on behalf of the e, tizens of London as to the condition of the Khedive's health his Highness has telegraphed to the Lord Mayor: I am happy to be able to announce that the state of my health is improved. I thank you for your message and hope soon to be able to enjoy the hospi- tality of the great city.-ABBAS." Prayers for the speedy recovery of the Khedive to health have been offered at the Liverpool mosque, and subsequently Abdullah Quilliam, Shiek-ul-Islam of the British Isles, telegraphed to the Khedive Bis. mallah Irrahman Irraheem. The British Moslems cordially welcome your Highness to England, and in Jumma Musjid to-day have prayed Allah foryout speedy restoration to perfect health." Sheik Ab- dullah Quilliam, who is a Manxman by birth and a solicitor by profession, received in reply a telegram in French from Chafik, the Khedive's secretary stating that his Highness was very much touched bj the amiable telegram from the Mussulmans of Liver- pool and by the prayers made for his recovery. HIS HIGHNESS BETTER. The Khedive remained on board the Royal yacht at Port Victoria on Monday, but he continued to make satisfactory progress, and a bulletin issued in the afternoon announced that his Highness was then fully convalescent and intended to proceed to London on Wednesday.
PRINCE EnWARD OF YORK, the eldett son of the Duke and Duchess of York, was six years old on Saturday. In celebration of the event a children's party was given at Marlborough House. THE German Emperor has ordered that each member of the crew of the gunboat Luchs, which is the first to leave Germany for China, shall receive V(1 one of the photographs of his Majesty and the crew, taken on board that boat. TIIB steamer Shenking, which is lying off Taku, has been engaged by the British Government as a transport and hospital ship. THE death is announced at Hastings of Major- General John Granville Harkness, who carried the colours of the 55th Regiment at the battle of the Alma.
IMPERIAL PARLIAMENT. HOUSE OF LORDS—JUNE 25. THE ROYAL ASSENT. The Royal Assent was given by commission to the Uganda Railway Act, the Public Health (Ireland) Uganda Railway Act, the Public Health (Ireland) Act, and a number of private Acts which had been agreed to^by both Houses of Parliament. NEW PEER. Lord O'Brien (Sir Peter O'Brien, Lord Chief Justice of Ireland) took the oath and his seat, and subscribed the roll on his elevation to the peerage. BILLS ADVANCED. The Poor Removal Bill and the Union of Benefices Act, 1860, Amendment Bill were read a second time. The Reserve Forces Bill, the Military Manoeuvres Bill, the County Surveyors (Ireland) Bill, and the Naval Reserve (Mobilisation) Bill passed through Committee. HOUSE OF COMMONS. THE CRISIS IN CHINA. Mr. Brodrick stated, in reply to Sir E. Ashmead- Bartlett, that there had been no communication between her Majesty's Government and the Chinese Government since the crisis in China became acute. In a general review of the situation he said that the Government had received no definite information from Tien-tsin since last Friday and that they were still without news from Admiral Seymour's force and the Pekin Legations. He read the last telegram received from Rear-Admiral Bruce at Taku, in which that officer said that Tien-tsin had been fighting for its life and idded that it had been learned from other sources ;hat the attempt made on Thursday by Russian and American troops to open communications between Taku and Tien-tsin had been frustrated. Since then she Hong Kong troops had arrived and about 3000 Japanese, 1000 Germans, and 2000 French troops, but nothing was known as to any operations which might have been undertaken. CHILDREN AND INTOXICANTS. Mr. Balfour, answering a question put by Sir H. Campbell-Bannerman, declined to give special facili- ties for passing the bill for prohibiting the sale of intoxicating liquors to children under 16 years of ige, the reason for his refusal being that the measure was a controversial one and contained principles which must lead to considerable discussion. THE AUSTRALIAN COMMONWEALTH. The Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Bill was considered on report, and after a purely verbal amendment had been agreed to was read a third time amid general cheers, on the motion of Mr. Cham- berlain. HOUSING OF THE WORKERS. The Housing of the Working Classes Act (1890) Amendment Bill was then debated in Committee, and on the first clause, which enables local authori- ties to establish or acquire lodging-houses for the working classes outside their districts, an amend- ment was moved which would have entitled county councils to acquire and hold land for the possible future needs of their localities, as well as for their immediate needs. The amendment was pressed to a division, and was negatived by 204 votes against 132. The clause was then agreed to. On Clause 2, which provides that the council of any rural district may, with the consent of the county council, adopt part 3 of the Housing of the Working Classes Act, 1890, and supply house accommodation for the working classes, Sir W. Foster moved the omission of the subsection setting out the considerations which should guide the county council in giving or withholding its consent. Mr. Chaplin, who opposed the amendment, dis- puted the contention of the mover that undue delay would be caused by requiring the county council to consider the points to which the subsection directed attention, and on a division the amendment was negatived by 165 votes against 105. A proposal to include Ireland within the operation of the bill was negatived by 120 votes against 69. Mr. Chaplin having intimated that this legislation was not required, the clause was then agreed to. A new clause, proposed by Mr. Hazell, with the object of extending the time for the repayment of loans raised by local authorities for the purchase of land to 100 years and for the erection of buildings to 70 years, was defeated on a division by a majority of 72 votes, and a majority of 66 disposed of an attempt to introduce the principle of the compulsory hiring of land into the measure. Mr. Whitmore brought forward a new clause enabling a local authority which had purchased land for housing purposes to lease it to anyone who would undertake to build and maintain the requisite lodging-houses. He urged that in some cases it would be desirable to relieve in this way the local authority from the responsibility of erecting and main- taining the buildings; and Mr. Chaplin, who expressed agreement with the views of the hon. member, called attention to the safe- guards which the clause contained against abuses. Lord E. Fitzmaurice and Mr. Stuart fearing that under the plan which the President of the Local Government Board had accepted there might be jobbery and jerry-building, opposed the clause, but it was carried on a division by 165 votes against 84. A clause moved by Mr. Channing and providing that when land was acquired otherwise than by agreement the price should be determined by a single arbitrator and that no addition should be made because the purchase was compulsory was resisted by Mr. Chaplin and negatived by a majority of 83. The bill was then reported to the House as having passed through the Committee stage. HOUSE OF LORDS.—JUNE 26. COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. The Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Bill was brought up from the House of Commons, and on the motion of Loild Selborne, wa.s read a first time. SECONDARY EDUCATION. The Duke of Devonshire presented a bill relating to secondary education, and prefaced the explanation of its provisions by an account of the changes made under the Board of Education Bill which was passed last, year. The object of that measure was to unite in one office the two educational departments then in existence—viz., the Education Office and the Science and Art Department—and at the same time to bring under the administration of the Board of Educa- tion some of the duties hitherto discharged by the Charity Commissioners and the Board of Agricul- ture. Last year he thought it would be desirable to establish a third branch of the Education Office for the purpose of dealing with secondary education, but since then various reasons had induced him to modify his views on this subject. He now intended to revert to the dual organisation of the office. The permanent Secretary would be responsible for the administration of the whole department. Under the permanent secretary there would be cwo principal assistant secretaries, entrusted respectively with the duties in connection with elementary and secondary education. It was intended to abolish the name of the Science and Art Department, which would be merged in the secondary in I y education branch of the office. In place of the third division lormerly contemplated he now proposed to give to the principal secretaries for education two additional assistant secretaries, one of whom would be chiefly charged with the supervision of literary instruction, and the other with the supervision of technological instruction. Sir G. W. Kekewich had become the permanent principal secretary of the new board, and would be responsible to the Government for the administration of the department as a whole. The principal secretary for secondary education was Sir William Abney, and under him the assistant secre- tary chiefly concerned in the literary side of instruc- tion was Mr. Bruce, who was an assistant commis- sioner of the Charity Commission under the Endowed Schools Act. The assistant secretary for techno- logical studies had not yet been appointed. Passing on to a description of the bill, the noble duke ex- plained that the measure was based upon founda- tions which already existed and that it contained very little beyond the proposals which were embodied in the bill of 1896, as far as that measure re- lated to secondary education. The existing local authorities were invested under the Technical Instruction Act of 1889 and the Local Taxation Act of 1890 with limited powers of aiding and super- vising technical and manual instruction, as far as secondary education was concerned. The resources possessed by those bodies were the proceeds of a penny rate and a sum which they derived from the local taxation account and which now amounted to over ESOO,000 a year. At present the County Councils and the County Borough Councils were alone the recipients of these sums. The bill would make the application of the local taxation to educational pur- poses compulsory instead of optional, and it would likewise enable the local authority to apply both the funds and the rates to purposes of secondary education generally, without being limited to technical or manual instruction. The extended powers would be given to county councils and county boroush councils only, leaving to the minor authorities the power they already enjoyed in regard to secondary instruction. The bill proposed to reconstitute upon a more formal and recognised basis the educational committees which already existed,andtherewas aclause which allowed the rate to be raised from Id. to 2d. As to the denominational difficulty, the bill contained a provision simply prohibiting aid to any schools in respect to the religi- ous instruction given therein. In conclu- sion, the noble duke said he entertained little hope that the bill, which might give rise to a considerable amount of controversy, could be passed into law during the present session. Lord Kimberley thought the arrangements of the office were a very great im- provement upon the plan which the noble duke laid before them last year. The bill was read a first time. I HOUSE OF COMMONS. THE SITUATION IN CHINA. Several questions were put to Ministers with refe- rence to the crisis in China. Mr. Goschen, being asked for information as to the composition of the naval force with Admiral Seymour, stated that it consisted of men drawn from the Centurion, the Endymion, and the Aurora. Mr. Brodrick, replying to Sir H. Campbell-Ban- nerman, who asked for the latest intelligence, stated that no direct news had been received from the Legations, Admiral Seymour's force, or Tien-tsin but that the officer in charge at Wei-hai-wei had re- ported that 3000 men of the relief force were en- camped within nine miles of Tien-tsin on Saturday evening, and that information had since come from private sources that the force subsequently entered the town and marched north. From various Chinese sources statements bad been received to the effect that the Legations were unharmed on the 20th inst. COMPANIES BILL. Mr. Ritchie, in moving the second reading of the Companies Bill, said that, although there was a p'ima facie case for amending the law, there ought to be no unnecessary interference with companies in the management of their business, and the law ought not to be made so oppressive as to deter the best kind of business men from engaging in company work, for it would be a great evil if the management of companies were to pass into the hands of professional directors. Explaining the salient pro- visions of the measure, he said that it dealt with the position of directors who acted without a qualification or took gifts or paid-up shares, and provided against bogus or fictitious subscriptions. The minimum subscription on which directors would go to allotment was to be stated in the prospectus, and a company was not to commence business until shares had been allotted to an amount not less than the minimum subscription and until three-fourths of the amount payable on application and allotment had been received. Companies would thus start with adequate capital. Another provision was that a return of the allotments should be made to the re- gister within seven days, so that investors would have an opportunity of seeing who their co-partners were. In order to prevent secret payments to vendors or promoters, it was arranged that the prospectus should contain a statement of the amounts paid to them and of the consideration for the pay- ments. With regard to the underwriting of shares it was provided that the public should be told what had been paid and the amount of the shares that had been underwritten. All mortgages of the assets of a company were to be registered with the Register of Joint-Stock Companies and be open to public inspection, and mortgages not registered were to be invalid. There were also classes relating to chemists and druggists and prohibiting a company from carrying on a medical practice, but he did not think that these provisions were germane to the measure, and it would be for the House to decide in Committee whether they should be proceeded with. There was one clause in the bill which he should not ask the House to retain. It proposed to give a preference to trade creditors in respect of debts incurred within three months of the winding up of a company, and would therefore encroach seriously on the rights of debenture-holders. Refer- ring to an amendment on the paper which declared that Clause 25 of the Companies Act of 1867 ought to be repealed, he expressed a hope that it would not be pressed. He admitted that the bill did not deal with all the abuses of company promoting, but he affirmed that it was an honest attempt to remedy some of the more glaring imperfections of the pre- sent law. Mr. Bryce, while supporting the bill, suggested that it would be improved by the reintroduction of thfi definitions and declarations as to the duties and liabilities of promoters, directors, managers, and auditors which were contained in the measure pre- pared by the departmental committee in 1894. In the discussion which ensued Sir A. Rollit, Mr. Lawson Walton, Mr. Atherley Jones, Mr. C. McArthur, and other members took part, the views expressed being, on the whole, favourable to the measure, which was read a second time without a division. A motion for referring it to the Grand Committee on Trade was resisted, but carried by 138 votes against 52. MONEY-LENDING. The adjourned debate on the Money-lending Bill was then resumed by Mr. Marks, and after speeches by Mr. Butcher and Mr. Lawson Walton, Mr. Bal- four replied to the critics of the measure. He dis- puted the contention that the machinery provided for dealing with harsh and unconscionable bargains would interfere unwarrantably with freedom of contract, and combated the argument that the task which would be imposed upon the Courts of the country was one which they were not competent to discharge. He renewed the assurance that the Government had no intention of reviving the usury laws in any form, and said that their only desire was to prevent gross acts of tyranny by money-lenders. With a legitimate money-lending business the bill would not interfere. In reply to Mr. Beckett, Mr. T. W. Russell intimated that in Committee the Government would withdraw the schedule, which, it wrz alleged by the opponents of the bill, fixed the rate of interest tha could be charged on loans. The bill was then read P-cond time, and after a division wa3 referred to the Grand Committee on Trade.
8 a younger woman the Queen constantly attended Deeside christenings and weddings, as well as funerals; but now she contents herself with send- ing for her humble friends to the Castle, or in speaking to them from her carriage. The Queen never goes to Balmoral without taking with her cases full of small presents. This year these gifts were, for the moat part, purchased in Dubtin.