FACTS AND FANCIES. I A CORK tree is fifty years old before it pro- duces bark of a commercial value. FULLY 800,000 domestic animals, valued at 200,000, are annually devoured by the wolves in Russia. A MAHKIAGB market is held annually near Mo scow, and it is said that over 1,000 marriages are arranged there each year. AT WHAT AGE ABB WE STRONGEST? I The muscles, in common with all the organs iof the body, have their stages of development and decline; our physical strength increases up to a certain age, and then decreases. Tests of the strength of several thousands of people have been made, and the following are given as the average figures: The lifting power of a youth of seventeen years is 2801b.; in his twentieth year this increases to 3201b.; and in the thirtieth ,And thirty-first years it reaches its height, 3651b. -At the end of the thirty-first year the strength begins to decline, very slowly at first. By the fortieth year it has decreased 81b., and this diminution continues at a slightly increasing rate mntil the fiftieth year is reached, when the figure Mis 3301b. After this period the strength fails more and more rapidly until the weakness of old age ,,i-is reached. It is not possible to give statistics of -the decline of strength after the fiftieth year, as tit varies to a large extent in different individuals.
OLD-TIME HINTS FOR TRAVELLERS. I How different the modern guide-book is from its predecessor of old times may be judged from < Edward Leigh's "Hints for Travellers," pub- lished at the end of the sixteenth century. Only those who speak Latin should travel, he says; and everyone should be well grounded "in the -true religion," lest he be perverted abroad. "Travellers should know their own country be- fore being allowed to leave it. Before his voy- age the traveller should make his peace with Cod, receive the Lord's Supper, satisfy his creditors if he be in debt, pray earnestly to God to prosper him in his voyage, and to keep him from danger; and if he be sui juris, he should toake his last will and wisely order all his .affairs, since many that go abroad return not &ome."
LEGENDS OF THE ROSE. I The Romans were fond of roses. The beauti- ful and celebrated Cleopatra received her lover Anthony at one of her magnificent entertain- ments in a chamber which was deeply carpeted -with rose leaves; and Anthony, in his last mo- ments, begged to have roses scattered on his 'tomb. The Roman Generals who had achieved .i,any remarkable victory were permitted to have roses sculptured on their shields. Rose water was the favourite perfume of the Roman ladies, and the most luxurious even used them in their baths. In the East the rose has always been a favourite with the poets. They represent the nightingale as sighing for its love, and many 'beautiful verses are derived from the idea. In a curious fragment, by the celebrated Persian poet, Atter, entitled "Babul Nameh, the Book of the Nightingale," all the birds appear before Solo- x mon, and charge the nightingale with disturbing their rest by the broken and plaintive strains which he warbles forth all the night, in a sort lof frenzy and intoxication. The nightingale is summoned, questioned, and acquitted by the -wise king, because the bird assures him that his -rehement love for the rose drives him to dis- traction, and causes him to break forth into those passionate and touching complaints which are laid to his change. The Turks believe that iroses sprang from the perspiration of Mahomet, for which reason they never tread on a rose leaf, or suffer one to lie on the ground. J
ABOUT EYESIGHT. I The best eyesight is possessed by those people whose lands are vast and barren, and where the obstacles tending to shorten the sight are few. Esquimaux will detect a white fox in the snow at a great distance, while the Arabs of the de- serts of Africa have such extreme powers of vision that on the vast plains of the desert they irill pick out objects visible to the ordinary eye at ranges from one to ten miles distant. The reason why defective eyes are so much on the increase in America and in Europe lies in too much study of books in early life and in badly lighted rooms.
THE HARVEST Mooir. I AS many people know, our satellite, in its journey round the earth, moves a certain dis- tance every day to the eastward. This move- ment naturally makes it rise later every night, and the mean difference of its rising is about fifty minutes. Whether the difference is greater or less than fifty minutes depends on the posi- tion of the orbit. The moon has to accomplish its diurnal journey eastwards in any case, and if the orbit should be almost perpendicular to the eastern horizon, it is manifest that the moon will rise at much greater intervals than if the orbit were more nearly parallel with the horizon. The latter event occurs, and is most notice- able, at the time of the September full moon- the Harvest Moon. The result of this "easting" in so slanting a direction is, of course, that the moon for several nights reaches the horizon and comes into view in our latitudes at very short intervals. There is little doubt that country people have in the past regarded the phenomenon as a pro- Tidential act to enable them to continue their harvesting after sunset; and doubtless advantage is taken in that respect nowadays of the useful series of moonlit evenings. But whether any farmer clings to the old belief that the Harvest Moon whitens his oats, is more uncertain.
THINGS JACK TAB MUSTN'T Do. I Who would imagine that it is a crime in some parts of his Majesty's dominions to whistle the Dead March in Saul" and even the National Anthem itself? Nobody, surely; and yet both these airs are prohibited in a man-o'-war, unless they are played by the band, says the writer of an article entitled "Things 'Jack Tar' Mustn't Do," in Cateell's Saturday Journal. Funny in- deed are some of the minor offences in the King s Navy. Except under certain conditions- at a specified spot and stated hours, and by per- mission of an officer-J ack must not throw a bit of orange peel or a banana skin overboard, and if he smokes out of the hours allotted for the purpose he does so at his peril. Cells, loss of pay, or degradation of rank may result from the indulgence. Nor must he have a button missing from any part of his uniform, or the fciees of his trousers baggy, if he wishes to keep his record clean. Conscientious objections to this, that, and the other, also, are not offici. ally recognised. A bluejacket has no business with such a luxury as a conscience. Not long ago, for instance, a man was put in irons for twenty-four days for refusing to be vaccinated, and finally, as he remained obdurate, dismissed the service. Literary aspirations, moreover, must be kept strictly under control on the lower deck, as a young bluejacket recently discovered shortly after he had published a description of a voyage, for he, like the anti-vaccinationist, was Promptly expelled from the Navy. Then if any young bluejacket attempts to cultivate a moustache however frail and tender, he soon fk9 an<^ a month's pay to boot. He can be «ither bearded or clean-shaven; but any com- between the two extremes is strictly for- bidden. Naval punishments are as odd as naval crimes. For expectorating on the deck, or in some other prohibited place, a man has been made to carry an enormous spittoon suspended round his neck during smoking hours till he caught somebody else offending in like manner. Equally ludicrous is the penalty for washing articles of wearing apparel at improper times- holding them aloft till dry on the end of a boat- hook. And there is something grotesque in that common punishment for minor offences, "facing the paint, as it is called. The bluejacket has to stand with his face to the bulwarks, for all the world like a disobedient child who has been w nipped and put in a corner.
USK. I COUNTY COURT, THURSDAY. I Before His Honour Judge OWEN. J A QUESTION OF BENT. I Mrs M. J. Davies. of CTsk, sued H. Hopkins for 16a. 8d., a month's rent due.—It appeared that in November last plaintiff gave defendant six months' notice to leave, but he wanted her to take the house at once, and left during the month.-His Honour told defendant he was really liable for a quarter's rent, and plaintiff was letting him off very easily.—Judgment for the plaintiff. SHBBP KILLED BY Doa., I John Cowles, farmer, Rama Cottage, near TJsk, sued John Lanman and John Smith for 12s. 6d. each, the value of a sheep killed by the defendants' dogs worrying it.-It appeared that Smith had paid 5s. on account, and Lanman had paid the amount claimed into Court.—Judgment accor- dingly for plaintiff, one witness (Mrs Cowles) allowed. COMPENSATION FOR THB LOIS OF AN ETB. I Thomas Strong, labourer, sued Mrs Williams, of Coed-y-paen Farm, for compensation for the loss of an eye while hedging. Mr F. H. Dauncey, solicitor. Newport, defended on behalf of the Insurance Company interested, and stated that be had received a notice stating that defendant's solicitor would not appear for him. He (Mr Dauncey) was willing to submit to a declaration of liability, but urged that plaintiff had been paid all that wi sdue to him. His clients wished to know how plaintiff made up his wages. It appeared that Strong, in his claim, stated that his average wages were 20s. per week. His Honour said thi was an arbitration under the Compensation Act of 1890. Plaintiff said he was a general labourer. He met with the accident on the 21st February last, whilst hedging for Mrs Williams, and lost his eye. He was engaged there at 6s. per week, with board and lodging during the winter. Formerly, he had been engaged as a labourer underground at 20s. per week, but for five years he had been a general labourer above ground. He fixed his average wages at 7s or 8s a week, with board and lodging. During the summer Mrs Williams had been paying him 8s. per week. His Honour said he supposed plaintiff wanted a lump sum, but that he could not give him under the Act; be would be very glad if he could. Mr Dauncey: That is the difficulty; he thinks he ia entitled to a lump sum. In reply to his Honour, Mr Dauncey said his in. structions would not allow him to promise a lamp sum. Plaintiff said that last summer he got 12s a week. His Honout said the largest amount he could give was 4s a week. In reply to Mr Dauncey, plaintiff said he was 41 years of age, and he gave particulars of his engage. ment by Mrs Williams.J Mrs Williams stated that she had paid Strong £ 4 19s 6d, and he was now in her employ at 8s per week, with board and lodgings. Hie Honour said all he could give plaintiff was half his wages. or the difference between what he could earn before and what he could earn now and in the result made a declaration of liability against defendant and awarded Strong .£3, with costs on that amount. Plaintiff said his other eye was failing faat. His Honour said if that failed, and ho could not follow his usual employment, he could come there again.
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ABERGAVENNY. I COUNTY COURT MONDAY. I Before His Honour JUDGB OWBX. I CLAIM FOR BOOTS.-MeBBrB. Cash and Co., claimed 16s lOd, "from John Evans, baker, Abergavenny, for bootB supplied.-An assistant in plaintiffs' employ, stated that defendant had acknowledged the debt by paying 10s, and explained that defendant's daughter had received the goods and obtained credit. Evans swore that he never gave his daughter authority to procure the boots from Messrs. Cash, and knew nothing about the debt.—Judgment for defendant. BROKEN WINDOWS.—Mrs Eliza Jones, of Aber. gavenny, sued Mr Haynes, manager for Maasrs. Bell's Stores, for 7s 6d, the value of ten panes of glass which were broken whilst defendant was in possession of her house. Haynes did not appear, and his Honour gave judgment for the amount claimed. SEBVICH FBB.—Mr D. M. Storrar sued J Matthews, a collier, for two guineas, the fee for the service of a thoroughbred horse.—Judgment for plaintiff for two guineas. A GBOOM'S CLAIM.—William Lane, a groom, claimed 15a, from John Jones, by whom he was formerly employed .-Plaintiff stated that he was in Mr Jones' service as a groom. He went into his service on the 1st May, his wages being 14s a week for the first month, and 16s afterwards. He was discharged by defendant on the 22nd July, after a proper notice.—Mr Jones denied that he agreed to pay plaintiff 16a a week after the first month. His Honour gave judgment for defendant. POLICE COURT, WEDNESDAY. I Before Major W. WILLIAMS (Mayor), J. O. I MARSH, Esq., and A. G. ATTWOOD, Esq. OCCASIONAL LiciNcj&s.-Ocessional licences were granted for the horse show at Bailey Park, and for the luncheon in the Town Hall, on the occasion of Lord Roberts' visit, and for the military tournament in Bailey Park. No INDBX PLATE.—William McBean, mechanic, in the employ of the Abertillery District Council, was charged with having a motor trailer without: an index plate at Abergavenny.—Defendant pleaded not guilty.—P.O. Woods stated that he was in Cross-street, in company with: P.S. Ash. Defendant was riding a motor bicycle, behind which was an ordinary bicycle on which there was no index plate. A man who was riding on the bicycle was holding a rope in his hand, and was thus being "towed" along.—Defendant ado itt d this and stated that he had ridden all around Newport and Pontypool and had never beeu stopped. He held that. 8 the bicycle wall not attached to his motor, he had not committed an off ence.-urciereu to pay lile cost. 5a.
CHEPSTOW. j PETTY SESSIONS, TUESDAY. I A LICENSES FiNED.-Bertha Birrell, licensee of the Bell Hotel, Chepstow, was summoned for selling whisky to a drunken man on the 31st ult.— Mr Lyndon Cooper, for the defence, pleaded that Mrs Birrell had no knowledge that the man was druuk,-Fined JE1 and 9s 6d costs.
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I. The Unemployed Bill. I Writing upon this Bill, The Hospital says We have more than once pointed out that the compulsory requirement of education by the State, or, in other words, the expenditure of public money upon the children of private individuals, carries with it, as a natural consequence, the acquire- ment of a certain public property in these children, and a right to watch over them in such a manner as to secure, as far as may be possible, that the expenditure is not wholly wasted. The same principle, we hold, applies to the relief of poverty. Our forefathers decided, centuries ago, that our poor should have a legal claim to BARE MAINTENANCE, I to the absolute necessaries of life, and from this principle, even if we wished to do so, we cannot now recede. The law about to be passed will assert, in principle if not in words, that the deserving poor shall have a legal claim greater than this, a claim to be assisted in times of trouble to preserve a station from which they would otherwise be likely to fall, and the standard of desert, which even at the first will not be an exalted one is almost certain to be lowered as time goes on. Even at the first, a man is likely to be classed as deserving who, at certain seasons of the year, has worked at his trade; even although this trade was one which, like that of builders or out-door painterp, is necessarily subject to alterations of good w ages and of compulsory idleness, and although the individual in question may have failed to make, during the former periodp, any sort of provision for the in- evitable occurrence of the latter. The inter- vention of the state, although for ihe present it be only in the form of private benevolence organised under legal sanction to relieve him from I THE NATURAL CONSEQUENCES [ of his improvidence, seems to carry with it a right to demand that his assisted house- hold shall not, in relation to disease, become a source to public danger; and hence to imply that the local authorities should pos- sess a dominion over him which they might not in other circumstances be justified in assuming. The right of those who confer benefits to exact conditions is one that, in the interests of public health and safety, should clearly be exercised by the State in the case of the unemployed.
A Labour Candidate for the Monmouth Boroughs. It is announced by a contemporary that everything now seems in proper order for Mr James Winatone to become the adopted Labour Candidate for the Monmouth Boroughs, and that the next step will be for him to lay his political views before the general body of the Labour party, with a view to his adoptionr A later account says Mr James Winstone has definately announced that he will contest the Mon- mouth Boroughs as a Labour candidate,
Cambrian Archaeological Association. I The fifty-ninth annual meeting of this Associa- tion is being held this week at Shrewsbury, and daily exoursions are made. The business of the week commenced with visits to Pitchford' Hall and Church, Aoton Burnell Church, Castle, and Parliament House, Langley Chapel, and Condover Church and Hall. Pitchford Hall is a splendid specimen of a black and white mansion of the sixteenth century, and Acton Bur- nell is of especial interest, apart from its archfeolo- gical merits, as the place at which Edward I. assembled his Parliament for the trial of David, Prince of Wales, who. after the fall of Llewelyn the Last, had kept the flickering lamp of Welsh independence burning for a short period. Mr Edward Laws, of Pembrokeshire, presided in the absence of the president, Mr. J. W. Willis-Bund. On Wednesday the party drove a distance of over 30 miles to Much Wenlock Abbey, Buildwas Abbey, and Uricoricum, where a long stay was made, this being the Roman city of Wroxeter. .t:
Russian Concession. New York, Friday. Russia is willing to cede, Saghalien, provided Japan pledges herself not to fortify it.
Russian Minister Resigns. Paris, Friday. The Echo St. Petersburg cor- respondent says that Count- Lamsdorff, foreign minister, has; handed his resignation to the Czar who has not yet accepted it.
Late General Sir Montague Gerard. St. Petersburg, Friday. The body of General Sir- Montague Gerard, the British Military Attache, who died at the front, has reached here.
I Chinese Boycott. Washington, Friday. Mr Conger is returning to Chinar especially charged to remove the boycott on American goods.
I Anarchist Plot Discovered. Constantinople, Thursday. An anarchist plot has been dis- covered in Smyrna. Many bombs, have been seized and persons arrested. Constantinople, Thursday. Several of those arrested in con- nection with the anarchist plot at Smyrna are Bulgarians.
I Death of an M.P. Sir James Haslett, M.P., for North Belfast, who has been ill for some time, died this morning. «4SSS===SS=S £ SSS=S9*
I Rain Stops Cricket. Rain is stopping nearly all cricket matches.
Stocks. Stocks quiet, hesitating. W Printed and Published by "THE COUNTY OBSERVES," NEWSPAPER and PRINTING COMPANY, Limited, by JAMBS HENRY CLARK, at their officesp Bridge Street, Usk, in the County of Monmouth, Saturday- August 19th, 1905.
THE RED BOOK OF LYNN. I What is believed by antiquarians to be the I noldest paper book in existence is the Red Book ;I()f Lynn," an ancient register belonging to the corporation of King's Lynn. This volume is Tcnown as the Red Book" from its original binding having been of that colour. The first > entry is a, transcript of the will of Peter de ♦Thorndon, burgess of Lynn, dated 1309; the latest entry is on folio 100, and is dated 15 Richard II. Some fifty years ago it was re- -paired and rebound, and the leaves, which age nad reduced to a loose, fibrous substance, wer* .arefully resized as an aid to preservation. •
MONMOUTH. I COUNTY COURT, TUESDAY. I Before His Honour Judge OWBN. I CLAIM FOR 'ROAD DAMAGE.-Monmouth R.D.C. sued Malcolm Charles David, gentleman, Fernside House, Whitebrook, for X44, cost of repairing a road at Fernside, which collapsed in December last. The plaintiffs alleged that the removal by defendant of the pieees of wall which acted as a lateral support to the supporting wall of the road had caused it to collapse. Defendant had a counter-claim for X100 damage to some fish- farming tanks caused by the road falling on them.—Mr Corner was for the plaintiffs," and Mr Sankey for the defendant.-His Honour said he was satisfied that at the time the road wall fell in the walls removed by defendant did not give any support to the supporting wall of the road, and gave judgment for defendant, with costs. The counter-claim was withdrawn.
MERRYWEATHER ON WATER SUPPLY AND FIRE PROTECTION of COUNTRY MANSIONS. EXPERTS SENT TO ALL PARTS TO Report on EXISTING Arrangements. WRITE FOR PAMPHLETS: MERRYWEATHER & SONS, 63, LONG ACRE, LONDON, W.C.
NEWPORT. I POLICE COURT, SATURDAY. I MOTOB-CAH PROSBCUTION. I George Biagood, of Park Place, Cardiff, a chauffeur for the South Wales Electrical Power Company, was summoned for driving a motor-car on the highway on July 28th in a manner dangerous to the public. Mr H. S. Lyne appeared for the police. Mr Thomas Thorne, farmer, of Pontllanfraith, stated that he was driving along the road near the Victoria Gardens towards Newport, when he saw the motor-car coming along at a tremendous rate. He shouted to the driver and held up his hand, but the car came on. The horse shied, and the car hit the trap up into the hedge, throwing his three daughters and himself out over the hedge. When they got up the defendant, who pulled up about twenty or thirty yards away, came back, and on being asked why he did not stop replied, I have just stopped for a restive horse, and I can't be pulling up all day." Defendant said that when he first caught eight of Mr Thorne's trap. Mr Thorne put up his hand, shouted, and attempted to get out of the trap. Defendant ran up the bank as far as be could, but the horse, frightened by the shouts and the car, shied to the opposite bank, and backed the trap into the road. The speed was not dangerous. The Bench fined defendant 40s, and ordered I him, in addition, to pay the court fees and a guinea special costs.
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PONTYPOOL. I POLICE COURT,: WEDNESDAY. I AN ARMBD BURGLAR. I On Wednesday, William Peel (49), a respectably dressed man, and a stranger to the district, was brought up in custody charged with breaking and entering the residences of Mr A. J. Hock, milk vendor, "The Green way"; Mr Henry Foster, mechanic, "Greenhill"; and Dr J. O'Keefe, "GlangariS," and stealing therefrom several snms of money, stamps, purses, and other articles. Early on Wednesday, P.S. Watkins received -information of the burglaries, and arrested the prisoner at 6.30. On being conveyed to the police- station at Griffithstown, a number of the stolen articles, together with a six-chambered revolver fully loaded and seven cartridges, were found, it is alleged, in prisoner's possession. Entrance had been gained to each of the houses by forcing back the catches of the windows with a table knife. Peel was remanded in custody till Saturday. POLICE COURT, SATURDAY. I FAMILY SQUABBLES.—A Cwmyniscoy family figured in eleven cases. The summonses were as followJames Jones and Jane Jones (husband and wife), for being riotous William Jackson for using threats towards Richard Jones; James Jones koon of Richard Jones), for assaulting Jackson; Elizabeth Jones, for assaulting her sister-in-law, Jane Ann Jones Annie Eliza Groves and Jane Ann Jones for assaulting their sister-in-law, Elizabeth Jones; Mary Ann Price (sister-in-law), for using threats towards Bertha Watkins; James Jones. for assaulting Bertha Watkins. for using threats towards Nash Baker, and for damaging Baker's window to the extent of 10s. Five informations had been laid against James Jones, who did notoappear. In the result, a warrant was ordered to be issued for James Jones the summonses against Jane Ann Jones for riotous conduct, and that against Elizabeth Jones for assaulting Jane Ann Jones were dismissed; Jane Ann Jones and AnDie Eliza Groves were each fined 108 for assaulting Elizabeth Jones; and Mary Ann Price, and Bertha Watkins were bound over. A HOKSB-SLAT7QHTBREB CHABGBD. I Charles Court, horiie-slaughterer, Mamhilad, was summoned for neglecting to slaughter a horse within three days after it had been delivered for the purpose of being slaughtered; also with permitting a horse to leave his premises which had been brought there for the purpose of slaughter, to be employed by Thomas Stephens, at Mamhilad, on June 6th. Mr. W. J. Everett, Pontypool, appeared for defendant, and pleaded not guilty. P.S. Sheddick said that on the date named he visited the Craig.yr-air Farm, Llangeview, and there saw a horse at work haniling hay. The animal was in a shocking condition. It was quite worn out and covered with sores. It was also lame in three legs. Witness found that the landl rd of the farm (Thomas Stephens), had borrowed the horse from Court. P.C. Hughes, Usk, said that on July 27th he visited Court's premises and asked him" hr he lent the horaa in question to Stephens. He replied, About three weeks ago a man named Matthews asked me to lend him a horse to do some hay hauling because he had a youngf one he was afraid I to work. A week last Thursday, Thomas Stephens came aud begged me to let him have a hursa. I I. told him I had not got a horse, except the one I lent to Matthews, which he could have if he fetched it." Court then took witness to his stable and showed him the animal, remarking I bought this horse and two others from the South Wales Colliery, Cwmtillery, on June 6th. I gave JE1 each for them. I slaughtered the otheri. but kept this one to do some work. It was fairly good then, and I worked it myself." When witness called to see Court on June 31st he told witness that the horse fell into a tank, and he (Court) had had to kill it. Mr Everett submitted that there was no case to answer, as the charges had not been made within a month, as required by the statute. The Bench, however, overruled the objection. Mr Everett put in a letter from Mr T. J. Williams, agent to Messrs. Lancaster, Spear and Co., Cwmtillery, in which it was stated that the three horses were sold to Court to do what he thought fit with." He submitted that no offence had been committed. The Bench also overruled this objection, and after a legal argument between Mr Everett and the Clerk (Mr A. E. Bowen), Court was called for the defence. He said that on June 6th he bought three horses from the South Wales Colliery Co., Cwmtillery. Two of them were fit for light work, but the other was unfit for work, and was killed on June 6th. Witness had since sold one of the animals to a farmer. Henry Hanney, farrier at Cwmtillery Colliery. said two of the horses were fit for light work. The Bench adjourned the case for the attendance of a responsible official of the Colliery Company. F
I Professional Philanthropy. I In one of the current magazines attention is drawn to the existence of schemes which bear charitable and philanthropic titles, but which are either absolutely fraudulent, or are so managed that the bulk of the money collected goes to provide commissions for collectors or salaries for officials. The motive of the article, says The Hospital," is to suggest that those who have money to spare for charitable purposes should take trouble to discover the true from the false, and should not allow themselves to be misled by mere loud-sounding names and pretensions. The particulars which the writer supplies fully support his contention and advice. Thus one society, which pro- fesses to meet the case of poor children," more especially in reference to the provision of a summer holiday, shows in its last annual report the collection of a sum of over Y,4,000, and of this only Y,1,608 was expended in charity, whilst £ 2,270 was necessary to cover the } COST OF COLLECTION AND MANAGEMENT. I The significance of this last item will be appreciated when it is remembered that the charges under the same head in the Chil- dren's Country Holiday Fund, which deals with an annual income of some £ 29,000, were less than £ 1,500. That is to say, whilst the Holiday Fund conducts its business at the cost of less than 5 per cent. of its income, the Poor Children's Society spends for a similar purpose more than fifty per cent. of its total receipts. Other associations and societies show a parallel state of affairs, and thus, avoiding altogether schemes which are fraudulent, it is obvious that the donor who wishes his money really to be used for the cause he has at heart had need scrutinise with care the business management of the charity he proposes to support. Religious professions and scrip- tural texts are sorry substitutes for a detailed balance-sheet and the guarantee of a professional auditor, and institutions which attempt the substitution should be scrupulously avoided. pq
CURRENT TOPICS. I SAGHALIEN. I The island of Saghalien, of which a good deal has been heard this week, can scarcely be described as a favorite residential locality. It is a barren, desolate place, which the Russian Government intended to convert into a great penal colony. To this island only criminals, as distinct from criminal of- fenders, have been sent. Convicts intended for Saghalien were formerly conveyed thither by road, marching over the whole Continent of Asia, but during the past few years arrangements have been made for transporting them by water. The settle- ment can scarcely be described as a success, for a Russian official has said of it4< The life led by the convict exiles at Saghalien is a frightful nightmare. It is a medley of debauchery, insolence, and impudence, co- existent with true suffering and indescrib- able privations." The only bright spot in its history is the conspicuous devotion of the convicts' families, many of whom have voluntarily accompanied the prisoners into exile. For ordinary uses the semi-arctic island cannot be of much value to anybody except perhaps for its undeveloped mineral wealth, but a reference to the map will shew that for strategic purposes its posses- sion would be a matter of great importance to Russia, and might easily be made a constant menace to the islands of Japan. BRITISH COOKING. I The visit of the French fleet naturally evoked some comparisons. between the naval methods of the two great nations. It ap- peared to be generally agreed that more money was spent on the British ships than on the French, and that for that reason they ought to be more efficient, but it was by no means certain that in all details the British methods were superior to those of the visitors. In all probability, the French seaman's meals cost less than those served on board our ships, but they are more palatable, and the inexpensive resources of civilisation are requisitioned to enable him to eat them in comfort. In this respect we are far behind our neighbours, nor is the inferiority confined to the arrangements on board our vessels of war. We are only just discovering that it costs no more to give our soldiers wholesome meals, properly cooked and decently served, than it cost to spoil the food in the cooking, and serve it in a manner which might have suited the ancient Britons, but is not at all likely to be appreciated in the twentieth century. Again, Boards of Guardians devote some care to the making of contracts for the supply of provisions, but in many cases no attention is given to the qualifications of the cook, with the result that a large part of the food which he produces is fit only for the pig-tub. It would be a happy thing for our people if one of the results of the cC entente cordiale" were the education in making the most of the materials which they have for a meal.
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Monday the Crucial Day. New York, Friday. The discussion on crucial points at the Peace Conference will probably not be reached until Monday.
Peace not Expected. Paris, Friday. The Matin St. Petersburg cor- respondent asserts that peace will not be concluded and the Govern-- ment is not reckoning upon it.
I Attempted Murder: Suicide. A painter who had been out of work murderously assaulted his, wife and step-daughter at Slough this morning, and then committed suicide by cutting his throat. *HHH5BSaBS9SSBfc.
Rainy Weather. The Meteorological office forecasts rainy weather.