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to Tokio to protest against the policy of some of the present Ministers."

There are, it seems evident, just causes of complaint against the Imperial Government, which is entirely despotic, and, at present, unchecked by any representative assembly. These grievances were referred to in a weighty memorial from the Risshisha of Josa, to which reference was made by a correspondent in the North China Herald, writing under date of August 11, 1877. "When the Daimios," said this writer, "yielded up their territorial rights, and their provinces were placed under a Central Government, they were promised certain definite compensations. The hopes that were raised when the change was made were referred to (in the memorial from the Risshisha of Josa), and the fact was stated broadly and clearly that these hopes have been disappointed. We read, and there is a sad confirmation of the truth of the statement, internal strife and disaffection among the agricultural classes and the Samurai keep the country in a state of constant uneasiness, while we cannot claim to exercise an external influence equal to foreign Powers. Neither the Government nor the people are freed from anxiety for a single day.' Then comes the real trouble, and there is no doubt that the memorialists have hit the true blot. 'It is our opinion that all these evils arise from the fact that your Majesty's Ministers exercise a power solely despotic, the administration being carried on entirely without reference to the opinion of the nation.' This is extremely bold writing; and when we reflect how few years have passed since Japan was using the abject forms of Oriental subjection, we are struck by the courage of the change. What follows is still more to the purpose. It is clear, then, that the oath of the Emperor should be strictly observed, and a representative assembly established, in order that people may have a voice in the affairs of the nation, and that they may aid the Ministry in promoting the welfare of their country.' This demand is striking at the root of the matter, and shows that the people have learned lessons of the highest importance from their intercourse with foreign nations. If we could only get a House of Representatives in Japan we should have some hope of the removal or abatement of the evils under which the country is groaning. These evils are patent enough, and the memorial sets them forth under eight heads. The first grievance is the action of the Cabinet in imposing its own oppressive measures without in any way respecting the will of the Mikado. The second is the random and confused manner' in which the Government is conducted. The third evil is that the power of the country has been too largely concentrated in the Central Government. The fourth grievance is the general conscription."

The Budget estimates, for the financial year 1876-77, calculate the total revenue as 62,995,643 yen or 12,599,128l., and the total expenditure at 62,993,347 yen or 12,598,6691.

The Imperial army does not exceed 80,000. The navy of Japan

at the end of June 1877 comprised one iron-clad frigate, two ironclad corvettes, two wooden corvettes, three schooners, one gunboat, one transport, one yacht. The iron-clad frigate-the "Foo-soo"-was built in England by Samuda Brothers; and the second largest ship-the iron corvette, called the "Kon-go" (designed by Edward J. Reed)-is likewise British-built. The armament consists of twelve Krupp guns. The Japanese navy was manned, at the same date, by 1,200 sailors, including 67 artillerymen and 260 marines. English officers were employed to give naval instruction.





THE third volume of the "Life of the Prince Consort," by Theodore Martin, appeared at the close of the year. It begins with the negotiations and preparations on the eve of the Crimean War, and is mainly engrossed with the Eastern Question of two-and-twenty years ago and the relations of Russia with Europe. We see the Prince Consort playing his part as an Englishman and a statesman, while the Queen is keenly alive to the complicated difficulties of the situation and the grave responsibilities that devolve on her as the head of a Constitutional Government. At the same time nothing in the former volumes represented her in a more amiable light than the sympathy we see her showing to her subjects and servants who had been the victims of the war in one way or another; while among the more rare domestic incidents we have the betrothal of her eldest daughter to the future heir of the Empire of Germany. At that time Prussia stood lower in the consideration of Europe than she had done at any time since she trafficked for Hanover and saw her armies shattered at Jena. The King and the Court party were the complacent dependants of the Czar, and content to sacrifice the national interests and aspirations to the policy Nicholas was urging with all the force of his character. But even then our ambassador at Berlin recognised that their humiliating subserviency was partly dictated by the definite ambitions which have since been realised. Lord Bloomfield wrote to Lord Clarendon, in February 1854 :

"It is impossible to make these people understand the duties and responsibilities of a great Power, and their chief thought in this question appears to be the chance of playing a great card hereafter in Germany, when the war shall have lasted a few years."

We advert to this not only on account of the important influence that the attitude of Prussia exercised on political events, but because it shows how thoroughly Prince Albert had formed himself to his position as the first subject of the British Empire. His sympathies were always in great measure with the great Northern German Power, but although he always seems to judge its action dispassionately, he judges it from a distinctly English point of view.

It was a strong sense of these grave public obligations which first inclined the Queen and her Consort to respond to the advances of the Emperor of the French. While Austria was vacillating from day to day, and Prussia had subsided into the creature of the Czar, a cordial understanding between the Western Powers was absolutely essential to English interests. The chief of the "conspirators of the Elysée" was ostensibly the

choice of the French people, and at all events he actually controlled its policy and vast military resources. His desire for an alliance of the countries was no doubt largely due to his anxiety to form close personal relations with the English Court; and, in compliance with his desire, Prince Albert went early in September 1854 for three days to pay a visit of inspection to the army at St. Omer.

In the early spring of 1855 her Majesty and the Government were threatened from abroad with a grave embarrassment. The Emperor of the French had taken it into his head that he could serve himself or further the common cause by placing himself in chief command of the allied armies in the field. Lord Clarendon, under the guise of a friendly visit, undertook a mission to the camp at Bologne, and succeeded in dissuading Napoleon from a project which had never been approved either at Paris or by his army; but, as it was desirable to soothe the susceptibilies of the master of so many legions, it became matter of policy, as well as hospitality, to encourage his proposition of a visit to England. Her Majesty, in her diary, describing the reception at Windsor, owns to some sense of the same emotions which had agitated the Emperor when he had done the honours of Boulogne to the Prince. "I cannot say what indescribable emotions filled me-how much all seemed like a wonderful dream. These great meetings of sovereigns, surrounded by very exciting accompaniments, are always very agitating." Then a little later in the diary comes a charmingly natural domestic touch. "We presented the princes and our children (Vicky, with very alarmed eyes, making very low curtsies)." The Queen took a fancy to her guest from the first. She remarks, after having sat by him at dinner, "he is so very quiet; his voice is low and soft; and il ne fait pas des phrases." He remarked on the all-engrossing topic of the war and the siege, "J'avoue que je crains un grand désastre, et c'est pour celà que je voudrais y aller,” as he thought that our Generals would take nothing on themselves." The next day her Majesty found him as before," very quiet and amiable, and easy to get on with. . . . Nothing can be more civil or amiable than the Emperor's manner," so full of tact. "The Empress was as eager as himself that he should go to the Crimea. . . . She takes the warmest interest in the war, and is all for the Emperor's going. She sees no greater danger for him there than elsewhere-in fact, than in Paris. . . . She said she was seldom alarmed for him except when he set out quite alone of a morning. . . . She is full of courage and spirit, and yet so gentle, with such innocence and engouement, that the ensemble is quite charming. With all her great liveliness, she has the prettiest and most modest manner." When the Queen and her Consort had taken the opportunity of the Paris Exhibition to pay a return visit of ceremony to their French Majesties in their capital, these favourable impressions were only confirmed.


The volume will be found to contain a good deal of graphic and pleasant incident. There is a charming account of the bonfire at Balmoral, lit up by the Prince's own hands on the taking of Sebastopol; and there are also very pleasant extracts from the Queen's diary concerning the Emperor's visit here and her own visit to Paris. The following extract from the Queen's diary contains one of the most picturesque touches in the book. It is the account of the arrival of the Emperor and Empress at Windsor in 1855 :

"News arrived that the Emperor had reached London at ten minutes to five. I hurried to be ready. . . and went over to the other side of the

castle, where we waited in one of the tapestry rooms near the guard-room. It seemed very long. At length, at a quarter to seven, we heard that the train had left Paddington. The expectation and agitation grew more intense. The evening was fine and bright. At length the crowd of anxious spectators lining the road seemed to move, then came a groom, then we heard a gun, and we moved towards the staircase. Another groom came. Then we saw the avant-garde of the escort; then the cheers of the crowd burst forth. The outriders appeared, the doors opened, I stepped out, the children and princes close behind me; the band struck up 'Partant pour la Syrie,' the trumpets sounded, and the open carriage, with the Emperor and Empress, Albert sitting opposite to them, drove up and they got out."

After the fall of Sebastopol, when the mysterious inactivity of the Allied Generals and the general uncertainty as to the course of events were causing intense anxiety among all classes in England, the Queen and Prince found some distraction in an interesting family event. Prince Frederick William of Prussia had come over to offer his hand to the Princess Royal. "Victoria is greatly excited," the Prince writes to Baron Stockmar, 'still all goes smoothly and prudently. The Prince is really in love, and the little lady does her best to please him." He adds, in a subsequent letter :

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"She (the Princess) manifested towards Fritz and ourselves the most child-like simplicity and candour and the best feeling. The young people are ardently in love with one another, and the purity, innocence, and unselfishness of the young man have been on his part equally touching."

We can now make only a passing reference to the curious autograph correspondence between the Queen and her French ally when the terms of the peace were being arranged. Her letters, which were, of course, submitted to her ministers and sanctioned by them, show a marvellously clear comprehension of the subjects on which the policy and interests of the French and English Governments coincided, as of the points where they diverged. While signifying her readiness for certain concessions and compromises, the Queen made it perfectly evident at the same time to the shrewd intelligence of her correspondent that there were matters on which we must necessarily take our stand without giving reasonable cause of offence. The best proof of her clearness of head and the ability of her frank practical diplomacy is to be found in the replies of the Emperor and in the results at which the negotiations arrived.

In the earlier volumes, the unfortunate differences between the Court and Lord Palmerston, which created no little ill-feeling at the time, and left many ranklings of heart behind them, were dwelt on at some length. Now we are glad to call attention to the letter-it is to be found near the end of the volume-in which the Queen, in gracious and kindly terms, expressed her satisfaction with the zeal and ability Lord Palmerston had brought to the arrangement of a treaty which maintained the honour and interests of England, and intimated her desire to signify her sense of his services by the bestowal of the Order of the Garter.

The present volume concludes with the subscribing of the map of the limits of the new Russian frontier by the Plenipotentiaries at the Paris Conference; and that forms also the closing 'entry of the Prince's diary for the year-"The Protocol about the Russo-Turkish frontier is signed in Paris, and thus is the Bolgrad question solved. Thank God!" Mr. Martin mentions, in his opening dedication to her Majesty, that when he presented her

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