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these commands exercise no civil authority or political function; and that in the case of a nomination to a higher command being vested exclusively in the Governor in Council, without the recommendation of the Commander-in-Chief, the Governor should be directed to consult with the Commander-in-Chief in making the selection.

* It would be very desirable to leave a latitude by law to the Governor in Council, to promote officers for meritorious service, at the recommendation of the Commander-in-Chief, out of the usual regular routine, as well as to pass over officers guilty of misconduct. This might be done by giving the Governor in Council the power to promote such officers, by brevet, in the first instance, who should succeed to the first vacancies in the rank to which they should have been promoted in the regiment to which they should belong.

It is then clearly the Duke's opinion that three distinct native armies ought to be maintained ; that they must be officered by persons belonging exclusively to the native service; that all authority, civil and military, must be vested in the Governor in Council of each of the three Presidencies, to whom the Commander-in-Chief of each Presidency must be subordinate. Indeed, the Duke appears to have had in view the strict maintenance of the existing system, the spirit of which is strikingly shown by the fact that, while the European officers held commissions from the Crown also, all officers, whether European or native, in the Indian military service, held commissions from the Governor in Council of the Presidency to which they belonged. A complete reversal of all this is now intended.

Although in the present day uniformity is so favourite a principle that it is difficult for those who do not admit that it is the best thing under all circumstances to obtain a hearing, still we may venture to remark that the great evil in the state of things before the mutiny was, that so very large an amount of power had been committed to a single class of men, open to the same influences and sympathising warmly with each other; and that it will be a repetition of this blunder if we shall adopt a similar uniformity of composition and organization in remodelling our native military forces. Would it not be wiser to imitate the latest improvements in material art, and to construct our army, as it were, in compartments, so that all shall not have precisely the same organization, the same hopes and fears, be disgusted by the same measures, and perverted by the same influences ?

We have heard of a new policy towards native princes, inaugurated by Lord Canning, which is to generate or to revive loyalty and attachment to us in their breasts. Until we know more fully and distinctly in what that policy consists, we cannot pro

* Wellington Despatches, vol. viii. p. 614, ed. 1837.



nounce on it as a whole. Meanwhile, however, as to one part of it, we must express our surprise at the announcement that henceforth our Indian Government will not exercise the office—hitherto always appertaining to the paramount power in India, when such a power, whether Mogul or English, has existed-of recognizing, or refusing to recognize, the adopted son of a native prince as heir to his dominions. Such a prerogative, no doubt, is susceptible of abuse; but the moderate, honest, and beneficent exercise of it is also possible; and we have reason to apprehend that the native princes, generally, do not regard the abnegation of it as a boon generously conferred on them, but rather ascribe that unexpected proceeding to weakness and timidity, and look upon it as a downward step from the summit of that imperial greatness to which, by the will of the Almighty Disposer of empire, the British power in India has been raised.

Further, it is said, we do not know whether correctly or not, that the native princes are to be courted by withdrawing the friendly intervention and superintendence by which we deavoured to correct, or at least mitigate, in the interests of justice and humanity, the evils which so commonly mark the rule of Eastern princes. While those princes retain their thrones by our support, the withdrawal of our guiding and restraining hand may deliver over a native community to much oppression and suffering, and foster in the princes a dangerous ambition. We take from the people all chance of righting themselves by insurrection, the natural corrective of Eastern tyranny, while we do not secure for them that mild and just government which makes insurrection unnecessary.

We trust that it is not intended to pursue a course of recession. Prudence and enlightened benevolence alike forbid it. The British Government is, in fact, paramount in India. Throughout India that Government holds, and must continue to hold, the power of the sword; from which power, permanently possessed, empire is inseparable. Nor is empire without inseparable obligations. And it should never be forgotten, that among the duties of those who have supreme political authority, none is more imperative than to see that the people of no country within the range of that authority are without what may reasonably be deemed to be at least a tolerable administration of their affairs.





The returns of the iron manufacture for the past year have been completed ; and they present a result to which we earnestly desire to draw public attention.

In the year 1840 the iron manufactured in the United Kingdom was estimated at a little more than 1,396,000 tons, and of this the • hot-blast' amounted to 625,000 tons, the cold to more than 771,000. In 1860 the total · make' had reached the enormous sum of 4,156,858 tons.* But the distinction between hot and cold blast has ceased to be noticed in the returns, and it is from other sources we have ascertained that of this total the portion of cold-blast cannot exceed the odd 156,858 tons. For many purposes, it is true, the cheapest iron is good enough. In earlier days the best materials were squandered on the commonest uses. But there was no such waste of power in 1840. If twenty years ago the supply of 771,000 tons of cold-blast was not more than sufficient, how far can one-fifth of that amount go towards satisfying the wants of the present time, when iron has been applied to so many new uses? It is evident that inferior iron must be used for many purposes to which only the best should be applied.

We hear with satisfaction that a commission has been appointed by Government to investigate the merits of the different qualities of iron. The commissioners, we understand, are men whose names justly claim our confidence, and we look forward to their Report with much interest; but they have no easy task before them ; for in a matter wherein the experience of different districts gives such various results, and the causes which bias the opinions of the witnesses are so numerous, the most conflicting evidence may be expected.

As an argument in favour of constructing iron vessels by private contract, Sir James Graham seems to rely (see · Times, March 25th) on the greater certainty which is attainable, in the case of iron as compared with wood, that proper materials have been used. We wish this were the case. As matters are now managed, we know of no security that the Government possesses against the possible fraud or ignorance of a contractor for ironwork. When work is projected, the contractor is reduced by competition to the lowest possible estimate. He, to secure the

Edwin Sparrow,

* Blast Furnaces in Great Britain, January 1, 1861. Birmingham.



contract, fixes a price which excludes the use of the best materials. He can buy pig-iron at prices varying * from 45s. to 105s.; and his first consideration is how much bad iron and how little good he can safely employ. In all probability the matter is further complicated by the intervention of middle-men, whose profits are virtually so much subtracted from the quality of the material. The contractor calculates that intermixture of the inferior qualities of iron will do much towards correcting their respective defects. But too much reliance must not be placed on this resource. It is certain that by no combination of the inferior qualities can a superior quality be produced. Manipulation, indeed, brings out the quality of all kinds of iron. But the limit is soon reached beyond which the inferior sorts cease to be improved by it; and they would be rendered absolutely worthless by the processes which are required to bring the superior to perfection. There is also a point beyond which the best iron deteriorates with further working. The horseshoe, made originally of the toughest merchant bar, is brought to the smithy again and again, till at last it breaks in two beneath the horse's foot.

It was for this reason, among many others, that we objected to the employment of scrap-iron for armour plates. But we have lately heard that the term "scrap-iron' has received a dangerous extension of meaning ; that old rails have been included in the definition, and thus under a new name (such is the potency of words) a most unfit material has been introduced. No man who values his reputation would work up old rails (manufactured as they have been, for the most part, ot cinder-iron) into merchantbars; nor is there any process by which such a material can be fitted to resist the shock of an eneing's broadside.

The opinion which we ventured to express that “rolling armour-plates was preferable to the more laborious and expensive method of hammering them, has been confirmed by further inquiry. The 'pile' to form the rolled plate is heated by a single process, while the hammered plate is formed by the successive addition of slabs; and as at each addition the whole mass is replaced in the furnace, by these repeated heatings the quality of the earlier portion is damaged. Again, the rolled plate is subjected only to the equable and uniform pressure of the rolls; whereas, when the hammered plate is turned on its side and its edges are submitted to the action of the hammer, the force of the blows acting at a right angle to its previous direction has a tendency to disturb the welding, especially at the centre of the plate, which retains the heat longest. "It is true that the greater solidity

See Edwin Sparrow's Iron Trade Price Current, Birmingham. Published monthly.


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or portrait aina!! of the hammered plate is more likely to resist penetration ; but by the repeated action of the fire and that of the hammer it is rendered more

brittle. The question, however, can be settled oply, by experiment; and we are glad to hear that some important firms have received orders for rolled armour-plates. Whether the plates be rolled or hammered, true economy would be consulted by em

ploying only the best iron, and we believe the efficiency of the plates would be increased by diminishing their size. If a long plate is struck by a ball, the reaction at the extremities is increased by its length, and moreover the increased size of the pile increases the difficulty of welding, whereas the smaller plate is not only more cheaply made, but more readily repaired. The method of grooving the plates, which is tedious and expensive, also adds much to the difficulty of repairing them, and should be abandoned.

The railway accidents of the last winter had no small effect in attracting public attention to the importance of quality in iron. But as far as regards the frequent breakage of the axles, it is by no means certain to what extent the iron was in fault. At the point where the axle of a railway carriage is immovably fixed in the wheel (for in railway carriages the axle revolves with the wheel, and not the wheel on the axle), the vibration of the axle suddenly ceases, and, where vibration ceases, crystallization and brittleness begin. This effect cannot be prevented by any quality of the iron

; but it takes place much sooner when the quality is inferior." This is an obscure subject to which we beg earnestly to call the attention of scientific engineers, but thus much at least is certain : if it be desired to ascertain the original quality of the crystallized iron, the infallible test is to heat it red hot and allow it to cool naturally. If after this process it does not regain its toughness, we may safely pronounce it to have been bad from the first.

The great draw back on the payment of railway dividends is the necessity which presses on niost of the companies of prematurely relaying their lines. And the question is now, Shall the mistakes of their predecessors be repeated ? or will the directors have the courage to propose and the shareholders the self-denial to sanction that which is required by the permanent interests of the company? It will no doubt be a great sacrifice to avoid reworking the old rails of cinder-iron ; but cinder-iron is a material unfit for the construction of rails, whether the heads or wearing surface of the rails be of steel or not. Cold-blast iron, indeed, can be got only in quantities sufficient for a

doctor ;' but good 'hot-blast' made of all mine' (that is to say, ironstone, without any admixture of cinder) may be obtained in abundance, and will make an excellent rail-bar.



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