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Title:      Views and Reviews
Author:     Havelock Ellis
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Hawkes Point, Carbis Bay, 1897

A Selection of Uncollected Articles

Boston and New York

Printed in Great Britain

IN these volumes are brought together a collection of essays, reviews, and some minor writings, covering a period of forty-eight years, from 1884 to 1932. They are not to be regarded as merely the sweepings of a literary workshop, for they are carefully selected from a larger mass of writings as having some kind of interest, either in relation to the time when they were written or in relation to to-day. They are so various in character that they could not easily be classified, and the order in which they here appear is chronological. What they have in common is that it has never proved possible to fit any of them into my books, so that, for the most part, they have been reprinted for the first time.
They are reprinted as they were originally printed. A few slight and unimportant omissions have been made, but not a word has been added, nor has a word been changed (except by the correction of misprints), even when details are obviously far out of date. It is indeed because a document "dates" that it becomes interesting. I feel, for my own part, the less desire to make any changes since, so far as substance and spirit are concerned, I still find myself nearly always at one even with the earliest of the writings included in these series.

CRITICISM . . . .19
BIOGRAPHY " . . . . 135

XV. BOVARYISM. . . . .179


viii C O N T EN T S

ERN EUROPE .... 280


This article appeared in TO-DAY for October, 1884, as by H. Havelock Ellis. TO-DAY was then edited by H. H. Champion, Labour and Socialist leader, and in it Bernard Shaw's early novel, AN UNSOCIAL SOCIALIST, was then coming out as a serial. My paper here appears as originally printed, except that I have restored a phrase concerning "the charming naivete of a modern Isaiah," which Champion--whether out of consideration for Bebel or for Isaiah I now knotv not--had deleted.
AUGUST BEBEL, whom it is unnecessary to introduce to the readers of To-day, has lately written a book in which he endeavours to set forth the position which women will occupy when society shall have been "socialised." Die Frau in der Vergangenheit, Gegenwart und Zukunft deals a little with the past, a very little with the future, much with the present. Beginning with a brief historical sketch, Bebel treats of the sexual instinct, of marriage as it at present exists, of the numerical proportion of the sexes, of prostitution as a necessary element in the present system, of the industrial position of women and their intellectual capacity as compared with men, of their legal position, and of their relation to politics. There are also some chapters of a purely Socialist character, with one on over-population. It will be

Views and Reviews
seen, therefore, that this book, succeeds in covering, however imperfectly, a very large field. In so far as it is a record of historical facts it shows to some extent the influence of that method which a German writer generally adopts when he comes in contact with facts, probably to escape from those tendencies which most easily beset him in thought. That is to say, he plunges them all into his book together, in a fit of fine careless rapture, trusting, apparently, that by some process of natural selection, the fittest will ultimately somehow float up to the surface. At the same time Bebel fails to adopt this method quite stringently ; perhaps he is scarcely at home as a recorder of scientific facts. An English critic has, however, little right to judge hypercritically a work on this subject, for we in England have produced scarcely any contributions of value to the scientific literature of woman. It may be that that charming prudery which has distinguished our nation during this century, but perhaps not before, and which has proved so delightful and so strange to French visitors, from Madame de Stael and De Stendhal down to Taine and Max O'Rell, has stood in the way of any frank and precise treatment of this subject. Certainly, even so grave an historian as W. E. H. Lecky, who at the end of his History of European Morals has inserted a chapter on the position of women, cannot speak of some of the most important questions that affect women without a wearisome and almost offensive iteration of

Women and Socialism
apologies. And in the English translation of so learned a work as Max Duncker's History of Antiquity--published in six large volumes at I am not certain how many guineas--it has been found advisable to omit passages which, it is assumed, are unsuited for the modest English student of civilisation. A similarly uncalled for process of excision was adopted in the editing of Buckle's Commonplace Book. Bebel's book may be found of value because it presents in a clear and outspoken, if rather rough and extreme form, what are, I conceive, certain distinct tendencies of modern feeling in regard to women; and an English translation would deserve a welcome.
The old question that moved men's minds was of religion. Now that "for the first time in the world," as Mill said, "men and women are really companions" there comes before us, with the larger issues of social reorganisation, a new and definite question, the "woman question" with all the economical, social and ethical problems that centre round that question. If we have not yet settled the religious question, we are at least on the way to its settlement; we have caught a glimpse of new ideals and the old crusade of mere destructive energy has been rendered unnecessary. It is true that, like a whale's teeth that have no longer any useful function to perform, a few enthusiasts still survive to raise the outworn warcries and tilt courageously against the corpses and ghosts of faith. But putting these aside, as

Views and Reviews
well as those ardent young people who have not yet emerged from their Sturm und Drang period, and for whom orthodoxy is still a very real foe, there are no longer any signs worth heeding to show that the religious question is still attracting the energy which it formerly absorbed. There are other problems now which slowly but very surely approach us, and round the woman question in its largest sense one of the next great fights will centre. Bebel's fundamental assertion seems to be that the woman question can only be solved in the solution of the larger social question.
Now there are at present, as he tells us in his Introduction, two schools of thought regarding this question. According to the first there is no woman question; nature has called woman to be a mother and a wife and has made the home her peculiar sphere. For the champions on this side, the argument is a very simple one, and they appear to be little troubled when told that millions of women are not in a position to follow this so-called command of nature and bear children and look after households, and that other millions, to whom this avocation has been vouchsafed, have dragged wearily through lives that have been as the lives of slaves. But there is another school that cannot shut its eyes and ears to these facts. It admits the inferior position of women when the general development of the race is considered, and that it is necessary to improve the condition of those who, not having reached the haven of marriage,

Women and Socialism
are thrown upon their own resources. Those who belong to this school desire that all occupations for which woman's strength and capacity are adapted should be thrown open to her, so that she may enter into competition with man; that she should be permitted to follow art, science, medicine. A small minority also demand political rights. But Bebel points out that not only would this agitation, if successful, simply serve to make competition rage more fiercely and so lower the income of both sexes, but that it is partial, being, indeed, chiefly carried on by women of the higher classes, who only perceive the special needs of the women among whom they live. The dominion of one sex over another, the material dependence of the vast majority of women, and their consequent slavery either through our present marriage system or prostitution, would remain unchanged.
Into these two classes Bebel finds Germany divided on the woman question, and it is possible that even in England--the Paradise of women as it was called three hundred years ago--there are not wanting representatives of these views. It is in opposition to both schools that Bebel sets forth the individualist--or, as he prefers to call it, Socialist--proposition that "a Woman has the same right to develop her mental and physical capacities that a man has." This is not possible --and here we touch the central point of Bebel's book--in the present condition of society. "The full and complete solution of the woman question

Views and Reviews
--by which must be understood not merely equality in the face of the law, but economic freedom and independence, and, so far as possible, equality in mental culture--is, under the present social and political arrangements, as impossible as the solution of the labour question."
Bebel endeavours to trace this out through several chapters of his book. Marriage and prostitution are the obverse and reverse of the sexual relations as at present constituted. And while marriage on the one hand oppresses the unmarried woman, it equally oppresses the married woman, prostitution affecting both. The married woman, Bebel considers, is regarded as, above all, a mere object of enjoyment; she is economically dependent; she is made to be a mother and an educator, the most difficult of all positions, when she has not been in the slightest degree prepared for so important a function, and is often placed under physically abnormal conditions. Alexandre Dumas says in Les Femmes qui tuent that a distinguished Roman Catholic priest told him that, out of one hundred women who married, eighty came to him afterwards and said that they regretted it. And this is scarcely strange.
It is even less necessary, Bebel proceeds, to point out the position of the ordinary unmarried woman under present conditions. She is shut out from what is considered a woman's career and other careers are only to a limited extent open to her. It is worthy of remark that Bebel is not

Women and Socialism
afraid to deal frankly with the question of chastity as it affects women. He quotes the opinions of various medical authorities in Germany as to the effects of celibacy on women and repeats approvingly the words of Luther: "A woman can no more dispense with a husband than with eating, drinking, sleeping, or other natural necessities. Nor can a man dispense with a wife. The sexual instinct is as deeply rooted in nature as eating and drinking." He would have those words carved over the doors of every Protestant Church.
Therefore both the women who marry and the women who do not marry are, under the present conditions of society, almost equally oppressed. The existing system, says Bebel, is neither "sacred" nor "moral." And against it he sets his own ideal. Marriage, he asserts, should be a private contract, not effected through the medium of any functionary. It should be "the contract of two persons of different sex who are attracted by mutual love and regard, and who together, according to the admirable saying of Kant, form the complete human being."
Further, argues Bebel, a necessary element in the present system is prostitution. It is the reverse of the medal. "Nothing shows more strikingly the dependence of women on men than the fundamental difference in the judgment regarding the satisfaction of the same natural impulse in the two sexes." He points out how prostitution with its one-sided way of regarding

Views and Reviews
men and women, giving rights to one sex which it denies to the other, is in reality as fundamental a part of the existing state of society as the Church and standing armies. "Remove prostitution," as St. Augustine said, "and you render all life turbid with lust." There is, however, nothing that is fresh in Bebel's way of dealing with this subject. Poverty and the crushing of the natural life under existing conditions are, he repeats, the great causes of prostitution, and these can only be altered by a fundamental change in the social order.
The historical sketch at the beginning of the book is necessarily too brief and fragmentary to be of much value. Bebel, who is, however, always prejudiced when he has to speak of Christianity, points out how even the Church, which is generally said to have done so much for women, could scarcely attain even to a sense of the spiritual equality of the sexes. At the Council of Macon in the sixth century the question as to whether women have souls was discussed and only affirmed by a small majority. He also shows how the minnesingers of the feudal ages, who sang so extravagantly of women, were the representatives of an unreal and unnatural ideal, and he calls Luther the classical interpreter of the healthy sensuality of the Middle Ages. A very short and unimportant chapter is devoted to women in the future. Towards the end of the book several chapters are interpolated that are quite

Women and Socialism
unconnected with the general scheme, being a general exposition of that time when society shall be socialised. With the charming naivete of a modern Isaiah, Bebel sings of the coming days when there will be no immorality; children will not be unruly; the seeking after coarse pleasures which is called forth by the unrest of domestic life will be ended; there will be no demoralising books; no appeals to sensual desire. All these and many other evils will be avoided without compulsion and without tyranny. "The social atmosphere will make them impossible." Furthermore there shall be a central cooking establishment; a central washing establishment on a mechanico-chemical system; a central clothing manufactory; central heating and central lighting; central hot and cold baths. There shall be no more maid servants, and vegetarianism (it is not quite clearly explained why) shall be done away with.
At this point of jubilant exaltation it may be well to leave the general consideration of Die Frau in der Vergangenheit, Gegenwart and Zukunft, and to touch briefly on two or three of the points which are intimately connected with the whole question and which must necessarily be more or less considered by everyone who undertakes to discuss the social functions of women. Whoever asserts the equality of the sexes has to face the arguments of those who bring forward what they consider the scientific" aspects of the case. One hears, for instance, allusions of a more or less vague character
B 9

Vieivs and Reviews
to a supposed difference in the brain-development of man and woman. Although our knowledge of cerebral organisation is at present too imperfect for very precise conclusions, Bebel brings forward a few of the facts relative to the size of the brain in the two sexes, as that men of most highly developed intellect have sometimes had brains not greater in weight than the average woman's brain, and that among savages, when men and women are placed under more equable conditions, the difference between the male and female brain is comparatively slight. As Vogt pointed out, the male European excels the female in cranial development more than the negro excels the negress. Bebel fails, however, to point out, as he might have done, that notwithstanding the absolute difference there is no such clearly defined relative difference. According to at least one series of investigations there is even a slight advantage on the side of women. It is a remarkable fact that not only is there less difference between the brains of a negro and negress and those of a civilised man and woman, but that the difference varies in civilised countries in a very significant way. The difference is greatest in Germany, least in France. Germany, it is scarcely necessary to say, is undoubtedly the country in which women are treated with least regard; it is the country which, it has been said, supplies half the world with prostitutes; and as regards the education of women it is behind every country in Europe, except Poland.

Women and Socialism
In France, on the other hand, women have played a larger part and possessed more influence than anywhere else. When we try to think of the names of great European women we think above all of French women. The inference is that if women were placed under conditions equally favourable to development they would in a few generations be at no point behind men. Bebel insists on this because it is related to the underlying and fundamental assertion of scientific Socialism. The individual is dependent firstly on the material conditions of his life, then on his social and economical circumstances, which again are influenced by climate and the fertility and physical conformation of the earth. It is this assertion which gives Karl Marx his scientific strength, and it is allied to the teaching of Buckle and to some extent, it is claimed, of Darwin. It is thus that, as the Socialists of Bebel's school urge, Darwinism leads to Socialism.
The element of truth in this fundamental assertion of scientific Socialism is intimately connected with the question of education. The general importance of education in relation to the position of women has long been recognised. But it may be doubted whether the great significance which it possesses in regard to the relations of the sexes has yet been adequately realised. A recent scientific writer has asserted that "man has advanced less in knowledge as to the proper mode of viewing the

Views and Reviews
true principles that should regulate the ethical feelings existing between the sexes than in any other branch of knowledge." And such knowledge is not only rendered more difficult of attainment, it is made incapable of finding a practical outlet, so long as artificial barriers are placed between the sexes. Bebel therefore rightly insists on the education of the sexes together, and brings forward some of the evidence as to the satisfactory character of its results, from an intellectual and moral standpoint, which comes from America. He easily disposes of the arguments, of a still weaker nature, which are brought forward against the admission of women as medical students with men, and in Paris, as well as in Sweden, students of both sexes sit side by side in the medical schools with no ill results. Bebel refers to the healthy tone of feeling which existed in Greece when boys and girls were not carefully hidden from each other, and the physical conformation and special functions of the organs of one sex were not made a secret to the other sex; each could possess a delight in the other's beauty, and sensual feeling was not as with us artificially over-excited.
The position of women in Greece, putting aside the old Homeric pictures, was in many ways a degraded one, but though in England we may have little in general to learn concerning the physical education of boys, in this respect at all events they have something to teach us and it is worthy of remark that in Sparta, where women had a better

Women and Socialism
physical education than elsewhere, they also possessed greater honour and influence. It is possible that modern feeling in regard to the body will again develop a directness and simplicity somewhat akin to the Greek feeling. "All the superficial objections to the public activity of women," says Bebel, "would be impossible if the relations of the sexes were natural and not a relation of antagonism, of master and slave, involving separation even from childhood. It is an antagonism which we owe to Christianity which keeps them apart and maintains them in ignorance of each other, hindering free intercourse and mutual trust. It will be one of the first and weightiest tasks of society, when founded on a reasonable basis, to heal this division of the sexes and to restore to nature her violated rights, a violation which begins even in the school." Though here, as ever, a little unjust when Christianity is concerned, Bebel sees how the exaggerated influence of Christianity has tended to overthrow the balance of healthy feeling, to distort and render morbid a whole field of human life.
There are two ideals of the union of the sexes, one or other of which has always had its adherents. They may be conveniently called the Greek and the Christian ideal. The one demands the most complete freedom for the sensuous and passionate elements; it seeks after a sunny openness, the spontaneous play of impulse. The other ideal,

Views and Reviews
which has been closely though not necessarily connected with Christian feeling, finds its satisfaction in the exclusive union of two individuals, for ever seeking new inner mysteries of joy, new bonds of union. Among modern poets Schiller and Mrs. Browning have sung the one ideal, while Goethe represents the other. Everyone according to his temperament is attached to the one or the other of these ideals, but whichever it may be that we are approaching one thing at least may be demanded: there must be no artificial hindrances in the way of human development; there must be complete freedom for man's deepest instincts to have free play. It is scarcely probable that either the Greek or the Christian ideal is sufficiently large to engage by itself all the complex emotional activities of modern men and women.
Bebel appears in this matter to tend towards the Christian ideal. I doubt, however, whether he clearly realises the ethical bearings of the questions he decides so courageously. The most striking point about all sexual questions is precisely the deep way in which they enter into such problems; and it is impossible to ignore the wide relations of any fundamental change to the moral feelings. From failing to insist sufficiently on the larger bearings of the marriage question it seems that Bebel's assertions, though true, are sometimes too partial. It is true that, as he maintains, "the satisfaction of the sexual desires is a thing that concerns the individual alone." But it must be

Women and Socialism
remembered that it is also a thing that concerns the race, that is bound up with the advance of human life; since it may be physiologically demonstrated that it is not possible for one-half of the race to be oppressed and undeveloped and the other not be dragged down too. The sexual relations of the individual, therefore, concern not only the individual himself in all his relations, but they concern more than the individual. And the chief ethical demand on the sexual relations to-day is that these larger bearings should be recognised; that the sexual relations should be finally rescued from the degradation into which they have fallen; that they should be treated with a full consciousness of their wide human bearings for the individual and for the race. "The power of a woman's body," it has been said, "is no more bodily than the power of music is a power of atmospherical vibrations." And when a man touches a woman he arouses that which is best or worst in her; it is not her body that he touches, it is her whole mental and emotional nature. When two human beings come near to each other, and one is little more than an ignorant and capricious child, it is scarcely surprising that the results should seldom be quite satisfactory. That is why the sexual relations cannot possibly be a matter of indifference. And that is why all social progress is hindered while these relations also are not recognised in their wider bearings on life.
An English writer, James Hinton, who in

Views and Reviews
writings as yet unpublished has dealt more boldly and more earnestly with the questions of the sexual relations than any other recent English writer I know, considered that when the question of women was settled the whole social question would be settled. It would not be possible, he said, for women to be placed in a true and natural position without a correlated change in the whole social life. Bebel, as we have seen, asserts that the woman question cannot be settled except as an item of a general socialisation. Whichever solution we may be inclined to adopt we may be assured that the first thing necessary is to assert the equal freedom and independence of women with men. For it has been the fate of woman to suffer from those who wished to do her honour. Till the reign of George III women were burnt alive for all treasons, because, as Blackstone explained, it would be indelicate to expose their bodies. "One cannot avoid a smile," Buckle remarks, "at that sense of decency which burns a woman alive in order to avoid stripping her naked." But to those who have studied the history of woman through the past and who have seen how often women have been impaled on an ideal created for the most part by men, that explanation of Blackstone's has a certain pathos and significance.
Once upon a time, a monkish chronicle tells us, an eloquent and beautiful English girl appeared in Bohemia, declaring that the Holy Ghost was

Women and Socialism
revealed in her for the deliverance of women, and was eventually, as usual, decently burnt. That was six hundred years ago now, and though we do not know what "message" it was that that girl had to deliver, the same spirit that found a voice in her still speaks to-day; in literature and in life it is ever finding more adequate expression. In America, Walt Whitman, who has so magnificently set forth his modern ideal "Of Life immense in passion, pulse, and power," has deeply realised the equality of men and women and the purity and dignity of the sexual relations. In England, struggling to regain its old position as the Paradise of women (and where the Towards Democracy of an enthusiastic friend and disciple of Whitman is too little known), greater progress has been made on the whole regarding women, says the American editor of a very interesting volume of essays on The Woman Question in Europe just published, than anywhere else in Europe. The ideal womanhood in England is ceasing to be, as it was once defined, "a sort of sentimental priesthood." And while in Germany Bebel has been exercising his vigorous and outspoken polemics, one of the foremost of European poets, Henrik Ibsen, has in the compass of a short play, Nora, thrown into a perfectly artistic form the whole (or almost the whole) question of the independence of women as it is presented to us to-day. There cannot be, Ibsen teaches us (although, as a true artist, he always anxiously disclaims any attempt to teach),

Views and Reviews
a truly intimate and helpful relation except between a man and a woman who are equally developed, equally independent. He has wrought out Nora with a keenness of insight into the most subtle recesses of the soul that is almost marvellous, and in Ghosts, a work of still greater genius and audacity, which there is reason to hope may soon be translated, he has again illustrated his fresh and profound way of dealing with the almost untouched ethical problems of the modern world. He has realised that the day of mere external revolutions has passed, that the only revolution now possible is the most fundamental of all, the revolution of the human spirit. If it is true that there is still much progress to be made in all that concerns the most intimate and vital of human relationships, if even so original and bold an investigator as Mr. F. Galton becomes timid when he approaches that central problem of what he calls "eugenics," the question of the breeding of men and women, we may still trace, faintly but distinctly, the tendencies of thought and life. For it is now gradually beginning to be recognised that the new ideal of human life is only possible through the union of the old Hellenic and Christian ideals with a third which is the outcome of to-day and is bound up with the attainment of equal freedom, equal independence and equal culture for men and women. It is towards that ideal that our modern life, not without pain and seeming failure, is slowly but surely moving.


The "Present" here means some forty-six years past. The paper was first sent to the FORTNIGHTLY REVIEW, accepted by the then editor, T. H. S. Escott, and almost immediately returned without explanation; the editor himself disappeared from the REVIEW soon after. The article was published in TIME in December, 1885. I never reprinted it as it soon ceased to express accurately my opinion; especially I felt I had placed Symonds too high and Pater too low, though with the low estimate many to-day will be content. The paper is here reprinted exactly as it appeared in TIME.
THERE is something so uncertain and so various in the methods and results of criticism, that a review of its present position would be best begun by asking: What is criticism? Such a question, however, would probably be considered a profitless and scholastic exercise, and the critic of criticism has to content himself with admitting that at present it is not quite certain what criticism is. Yet we are not entirely without definitions of criticism. A distinguished English critic and a distinguished French critic have each given us a definition of criticism. According to Matthew Arnold's well-known formula, criticism is "a disinterested endeavour to learn and propagate

Views and Reviews
the best that is known and thought in the world." Taine says: "The critic is the naturalist of the soul. He accepts its various forms; he condemns none and describes all." Neither of these definitions, one notes, can be said to err on the side of undue modesty, and Mr. Arnold's labours under the disadvantage of not being founded on any definite conception. It is clearly formulated for the benefit of that English middle class among whom he desires to be an evangelist. Taine's definition is that of a critic who is a philosopher first, and a critic afterwards. A clear and distinct scientific conception underlies it. He is the naturalist of the soul as it appears in literature and art; it is there that he finds his documents sig-nificatifs. For the individual as an individual, as a distinct personality with its own character and idiosyncrasy, he cares little. He is not satisfied unless he can refer the qualities of the individual back into his environment. The vitality and fruitfulness of this method have been attested by its results. Taine has had an influence which has ' reached throughout Europe. The naturalistic school has adopted his aesthetics; Zola prefaced to an early novel a characteristic utterance of the master: "Le vice et la virtu sont des produits comme le vitriol et comnie le sucre." In Italy his influence has been great; in Denmark he has, in great measure through the influence of his disciple, the well-known critic, Georg Brandes, profoundly awakened intellectual life. It is true, indeed, that,

The Present Position of English Criticism
as one of the best of the young French critics has said of him, he represents that religion of science which is peculiar to the second half of the nineteenth century. But notwithstanding that perfect honesty and devotion to principle which has enabled him to face unshrinkingly the disapprobation which the Origines de la France Contemporaine has aroused, he has himself exhibited, in the most startling manner, the imperfection of his own definition of criticism. The critic describes, he tells us; he does not condemn. But it would be difficult to find a more severe condemnation of the French Revolution than the Origines. The naturalist of the soul cannot avoid a moral judgment; he is dealing with the very stuff of morals. The fact is, that a purely objective method of criticism, founded on general principles, cannot be reached even by a Taine. So long as we ignore the individuality of the critic, the personal equation of criticism will never come out right. Perhaps every critic ought to prefix a criticism of himself to his writings. We need to know his mental history, all the influences he has come under; we need details of his parents, of the peculiarities of his race as exhibited in his brothers and sisters; we must have clearly stated his prejudices, his partialities, his limitations. When that is done, we possess the terms of our personal equation; we can attain a true critical appreciation; and the critic's merit is great in proportion as the deductions we have to make are small.

Views and Reviews
How completely, for instance, we might by this method justify the idiosyncrasies of Matthew Arnold's judgments! Even so imperfect and partial a self-criticism as Renan's delightful volume of Souvenirs forms an introduction to Renan's work of the very highest value. Till this is done we are not in a position to define criticism, or to measure the success of the critic's work which is, practically, to find out what is really essential and significant in the artistic product before him, and to subordinate, or classify, that product in accordance with the largest number of its most significant characteristics, with most sureness and with least caprice. When Ruskin spoke of The Mill on the Floss as "a study of cutaneous disease" he illustrated admirably the nature of a false subordination in criticism. The more one attempts to justify this judgment by evidence, the more untenable it becomes. When Mr. J. A. Symonds spoke once of Walt Whitman as "more truly Greek than any other man of modern times," the classification was to most people perhaps as little obvious as the other, but we have only to bring forward the evidence, to reveal the caracteres essentiels of Whitman, and we find that it is justified.
While Taine, with an imperfect conception of criticism, has been influencing continental thought, Matthew Arnold, with an equally imperfect conception, has had a wide influence on English thought. If his definition of criticism is quite

The Present Position of English Criticism
untenable from a scientific point of view, he is yet one of the earliest and most popular of the modern English critical school, and he is largely responsible for its merits and its defects. English criticism is fairly catholic, fairly sympathetic, but a little too literary and too superficial; perhaps a little too bourgeois. If it is scarcely serious enough, it is inquisitive, appreciative, even subtle. Matthew Arnold's aim has been to fly from flower to flower, gathering sweets from each, never staying, so that he may bring to his middle-class countrymen the honey he has collected--" the best that is known and thought in the world." These flowers are, for the most part, exotics; in Essays in Criticism, his best and most popular critical volume, not one essay is concerned with an English writer. And that brings us at once to one of the defects of Mr. Arnold's critical work. He is a moralist. Macau-lay asserts grandiloquently that English literature is supreme. "I dare say this is so," observes Mr. Arnold wearily, "only, remembering Spinoza's maxim, that the two great banes of humanity are self-conceit, and the laziness that comes from self-conceit, I think it may do us good "to say that it is not so. That is scarcely the true critical temper. Mr. Arnold is constantly oppressed by his own contentious and rather awkward formula that "conduct is three-fourths of life." His delight in moralising is, indeed, one of his most marked psychological features. And everyone knows with what peculiar unction Mr. Arnold quotes the

Views and Reviews
amiable platitudes of a certain Bishop Wilson. How characteristic is this passage for instance: "What an antidote to the perilous Methodist doctrine of instantaneous sanctification is this saying of Bishop Wilson: ' He who fancies that his mind may effectually be changed in a short time deceives himself'!"
The curious limitations of Matthew Arnold's power, as revealed in occasional calm and arbitrary failures of judgment--the note of provincialism, as he would himself call it--are so obvious, and to many people, so irritating, that they have frequently aroused ample discussion, and need not be alluded to here. Nor is it necessary to speak of his habit of inventing a catchword, and then repeating it in varying tones and inflexions of voice, as if endeavouring to impress some new meaning on the word, a trick which has been caught by some of those whom Mr. Arnold has influenced. Professor Seeley, for example, not long ago undertook to tell us that Goethe is a serious writer--a serious writer. Sainte-Beuve, from whom many of Matthew Arnold's best qualities derive, was singularly free from such peculiarities of method. In the preceding critical generation he was, as his English disciple said, "the prince of critics." One wishes sometimes that Mr. Arnold possessed something of Sainte-Beuve's freedom from prejudice. There is, however, another and more fundamental weakness in his critical work, a weakness which is, I think,

The Present Position of English Criticism
connected with that impression of superficiality which he often gives. The literary qualities of style are not so widely diffused in England that we can well afford to quarrel with them when, as in Matthew Arnold's prose, we find them so exquisitely, so charmingly developed. It would be hard to overrate the marvellous qualities of this style--its delicacy, its lucidity, its irony, its vital and organic music--but it remains true that an intense preoccupation with style is almost invariably detrimental to the finest criticism. The critic's business is not to say beautiful things. It is his business to take hold of his subject with the largest and firmest grasp, to express from it its most characteristic essence. But it is part of Matthew Arnold's method, if method it may be called, "to approach truth on one side after another, not to strive or cry, nor to persist in pressing forward, on any one side, with violence and self-will." One of his best-known essays, that on Heine, is an admirable instance of what can and cannot be obtained by this method. At the time it was written Carlyle was accepted as an authority on German literature, and Carlyle is said to have referred to Heine as "that pig." Here, as usually Mr. Arnold was on the side of true criticism. He shows a delicate appreciation of the obvious aspects of things--especially the more un-English aspects--a sure sense of the artistic perfection of Heine's verse, though not of his prose, an adequate delight in his wit, a total failure
c 25

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to understand his humour, the usual irresistible tendency to moralise which prompts him to sum up by saying that Heine produced nothing but "a half result." But Heine is peculiarly difficult to criticise. How many books and essays have been written about him, and how little true criticism they contain! Perhaps, indeed, the time has not yet come for a really wide and deep appreciation of his marvellous individuality. At present the only fairly complete critical account of Heine that I know of in England is contained in a careful and rather dull paper which appeared in the Contemporary a few years ago, and which was written by a Mr. Charles Grant. Let us, then, look at Mr. Arnold's article on "Keats" in Ward's English Poets. Who has not heard of Keats' "natural magic"? Here, in the shortest compass, Mr. Arnold displays all the charm of his most exquisite literary style. And yet his unhappy tendency to moralise, his resolve "not to persist in pressing forward," but to enjoy merely the superficial aspect of things, make it impossible to say that these pages, delightful as they are, bear on them the stamp of true critical insight.
After all, we must never forget all that we owe to Matthew Arnold. M. Bourget says of Renan that he is "1'homme superieur." Matthew Arnold is the English "homme superieur," though not in quite the same sense. It is the superiority voulu of a pedagogue. If, however, he appears to possess the hereditary instincts of a schoolmaster,

The Present Position of English Criticism
and in a stern yet half-encouraging manner deals out reproofs to Ruskin, Stopford Brooke, and others who have not yet learnt what measure is, what style is, what urbanity is, still it is true that the reproofs were called for, and Matthew Arnold himself seldom forgets what those things are. One would prefer, when charitably disposed, that one's contemporaries should fall into his hands rather than, let us say, be reached by Swinburne's reckless sledge-hammer. It is no mean distinction to have been one of the foremost poets of an age, one of its chief prose writers, and its most typical critic. This may console Mr. Arnold when he sometimes finds arrayed against him the weapons which he has himself forged. When a writer has become popular and influential it is profitable, Mr. Arnold would himself tell us, to meditate on his defects. The influence which Matthew Arnold has exercised on recent English critical work may be seen both in its better qualities and in its lack of thoroughness, its tendency to degenerate into the mere literature of style. Not long ago Mr. F. W. H Myers published two volumes of essays which were largely of a critical character. These well-written essays were received with all the applause which they deserved, an applause which was unanimous, and seems to indicate that they may fairly be accepted, both in their merits and defects, as an example of the popular conception of criticism. The influence of Matthew Arnold's method may, I think, be well traced in the essay on Renan.

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Mr. Myers is concerned not to get to the heart of his subject, but to give us charming and interesting passages, stimulating and profitable suggestions--"the best that is known and thought in the world." There are luminous points of criticism here and there, but they are not frequent. It is a pleasant essay, it is not criticism. It might be said that Mr. Myers is writing of a foreign author, not, like M. Bourget, of a native writer, with whom he could suppose his readers to be well acquainted, or, like Georg Brandes, who writes avowedly for all Europe. Let us turn, then, to his essay on "Rossetti and the Religion of Beauty." I have read this essay several times since it first appeared in the Cornhill; there is something so charming about it that it is by no means difficult to read; but I must confess that every time I reach the end of it no definite impression remains on my mind. It is witty sometimes; it is carefully written; I frequently feel that Mr. Myers is about to touch the heart of his subject; but he goes round and round, and never seems to get any nearer. He beats the bush with admirable dexterity, and the reader looks on expectantly, but nothing appears. There are certain flames in literature--Heine, Rossetti, Whitman--into which the critical moth in England loves to dash, and Mr. Myers, like the rest, appears to singe his wings with great satisfaction.
Another English critic, Mr. Theodore Watts,
has dealt with Rossetti much more successfully.


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Notwithstanding his fine sense for artistic form, his keen faculty for mere literary analysis, Mr. Watts sees clearly the nature of the critic's ultimate task. He is fully aware that the critic is concerned with criticism, not with the mere production of literature. In an article called, with some failure of good taste, "The Truth about Rossetti," which appeared in the Nineteenth Century about two years ago, he has produced a criticism of Rossetti which is likely to be final for some years to come. If we regard the present state of English criticism, it is difficult to praise such work too highly for its grasp of a very wonderful individuality, for its keen perception of the relations of that individuality to imaginative art generally. The accurate criticism of a great, and hitherto unappreciated personality (with which, also, the critic has come closely in contact), is a peculiarly difficult task. Swinburne's criticism of Rossetti was a lyrical rhapsody. Mr. William Sharp, with all his talent, with his devoted and laborious enthusiasm, has written a volume of some four hundred pages about Rossetti, which contains perhaps some dozen lines of genuine criticism. And when the enthusiasm and the laboriousness are both wanting, the result may be even more disastrous, as anyone may have observed who happened to witness a pathetic attempt at the criticism of Rossetti by the late Principal Shairp. Such criticism as that of Mr. Watts becomes, therefore, very precious, and it is a matter for regret that he has not more

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strenuously devoted himself to criticism of such
serious and enduring quality.

I have alluded to another writer who has been singularly fortunate or unfortunate in attracting the attention of critics. It would be difficult even to name the critics who have attempted to gauge the depth or shallowness of Whitman's genius, for the most part, not even excepting an interesting attempt of Professor Dowden's, in a somewhat ineffectual manner. Strange to say, it is in the prophet's own country, and from a writer who is not pre-eminently a critic, that the most adequate appreciation of Whitman has so far proceeded. In an essay, entitled too fancifully The Flight of the Eagle, John Burroughs shows very remarkable precision of judgment, and power of synthetic criticism. His range of criticism, though narrow, is true within its own limits. Narrowness of range marks some of our best critics. Mr. Pater, if he has nothing else in common with Burroughs, is a true critic within an almost equally narrow range, and with a similar synthetic method. Mr. Burroughs' range is that of large, virile, catholic, sweet-blooded things; he is half on the side of Emerson, but altogether on the side of Rabelais, of Shakespeare, of Whitman. Mr. Pater is not, indeed, on the side of "Zoroaster and the saints"; but there is no room in his heart for the things that Mr. Burroughs loves. For him there is nothing so good in the world as the soft, spiritual aroma--telling, as nothing else tells, of the very

The Present Position of English Criticism
quintessence of the Renaissance itself--that exhales from Delia Robbia ware, or the long-lost impossible Platonism of Mirandola, or certain subtle and evanescent aspects of Botticelli's art. To find how the flavour of these things may be most exquisitely tasted, there is nothing so well worth seeking as that. Even in Marius the "new Cyrenaicism" in reality rules to the end. Joachim du Bellay is too fragile to bear the touch of analytic criticism, but certainly it would be impossible to do more for him than Mr. Pater has done by his synthetic method. For Mr. Pater the objects with which aesthetic criticism deals are "the receptacles of so many powers or forces" which he wishes to seize in the most complete manner; they are, as it were, plants from each of which he wishes to extract its own peculiar alkaloid or volatile oil. For him "the picture, the landscapes, the engaging personality in life or in a book, La Gioconda, the hills of Carrara, Pico of Mirandola, are valuable for their virtues, as we say in speaking of a herb, a wine, a gem; for the property each has of affecting one with a special unique impression of pleasure." This was an ingenious and almost scientific theory of criticism, and had not Mr. Pater seemed to swoon by the way over the subtle perfumes he had evoked, he might, one thinks, have gone far.
If, however, the area which Mr. Pater occupies with his herbs, and gems, and wines is small, however choice, that is but saying that he is not

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a critic of the first order, and that critics of the first order are rare. With so definite, and apparently fruitful a method, one might have thought that all things were possible for Mr. Pater. But a fairly catholic critic like Sainte-Beuve--for with all his cynical caution Sainte-Beuve was catholic--rarely has a definite method, a method to which he adheres. However it may be in the future, the critic, in his largest development, hitherto has been a highly-evolved and complex personality, whose judgments have proceeded from the almost spontaneous reaction of his own nature with the things with which he has come in contact; and so long as that is the case, the main point is to ascertain the exact weight and quality of the factor which the critic himself brings. In that way, while we shall still be nothing less than infinitely removed from the realisation of so primitive a conception of the critic's function as Matthew Arnold's--"to see the thing as in itself it really is"--can we only at present truly attain a sound criticism. Mr. J. A. Symonds, among English critics, possesses, I think unquestionably, the most marked catholicity. He has not, like Mr. Pater, the advantage or disadvantage of a definite method. He lives and moves in "the free atmosphere of art, which is nature permeated by emotion." This allows him at once a large scope, both for analytic criticism and for mere description. Description, it is scarcely necessary to say, is not always criticism; and Mr. Symonds,

The Present Position of English Criticism
especially in some volumes of magazine essays--the litter of his workshop--gathered together and published--it is not, from a critical point of view, quite easy to say why--is by no means sparing in this respect. His power of fluent description, his wealth of exact analogy from all domains of art, are sometimes almost oppressive. He can tell you how a particular poem is like a particular picture, or a particular picture like a particular fugue of Bach's. But a capacity for profuse and minute analogy, however rich and poetic--and Mr. Symonds' analogies often are rich and poetic; for instance, "the beautiful Greek life, as of leopards, and tiger-lilies, and eagles "--is not necessarily a surer guide in paths of criticism than in paths of philosophy. In his more solid and mature work Mr. Symonds has freed himself from these defects of his manner. In the chief subject with which he has dwelt--the Italian Renaissance--his method of uniting description with analytic criticism is seen at its best. Notwithstanding the emotional extravagance to which he is sometimes (though not at his best) inclined, Mr. Symonds' deepest quality is his keen and restless intellectual energy. This profoundly inquisitive temper of mind may be seen in his sonnets, with their subtle and searching dialectical power. To this wide-ranging intellectual force is united a certain calm breadth and sanity which marks all Mr. Symonds' best work. Taine, whose eager, inquisitive, intellectual force is greater still, fails to give any impression

Views and Reviews
of underlying sanity and calm. One can always see the restless passion that throbs beneath the iron mail of his logic. Mr. Symonds, also, is free from the limitations of the specialist critic. His account of Shelley in the "Men of Letters" series is, on the whole, the best that has yet appeared; in Ward's English Poets he has written a short criticism of Byron which sums up admirably whatever makes Byron great and significant. It is rare to find a critic who is equally receptive to these two so diverse artistic individualities. Taine, with all his ostentation of scientific apparatus, has his well-marked proclivities. When one thinks of Taine one thinks of the things that are most exuberant, elemental, bitter, that burst forth from the lowest depth of the human consciousness--of Rubens, of Shakespeare, of Swift. We see his insatiable passion for all that is fiercest and most concentrated in the elemental manifestations of human hatred and revenge in his Revolution. Mr. Symonds, with a much less definite method, has less definite prejudices. But he also takes peculiar delight in a certain order of individuality. Like Taine, he is attracted by the manifestations of elemental passion; his intellectual energy is satisfied by the bold, strong, unemotional imagination of the Italian novellieri, or the same imagination with its profound moral and emotional reverberations in the Elizabethan dramatists.. Perhaps, however, it is the natural rather than the fiendish aspects of passion to which he is attracted,

The Present Position of English Criticism
the aspects that are lovely and yet masculine. That wonderful Kermesse of Rubens in the Louvre is the perfect embodiment of all that most fascinates Taine. Mr. Symonds prefers Tintoretto's Bacchus and Ariadne. It is the broad, masculine, sympathetic personalities that he seems most to care about: Pontano, with his large, healthy sensuality, his tremulous tenderness for sorrow and childhood in the seventeenth century; Whitman, with his vast tolerance, his audacity in the presence of all things natural and human, in the nineteenth. What Mr. Symonds tells us more explicitly of his philosophy of life harmonises with this bias. The motto of the Studies of the Greek Poets is Goethe's famous saying:--
"Im Ganzen, Guten, Schoenen
Resolut zu leben."

And in the suggestive and characteristic essay at the end of the first series--"The Genius of Greek Art"--he declares that there is but one way to make the Hellenic tradition vital--to be natural. Science, he adds, will place the future man on a higher pinnacle than even the Greek; for it has given us the final discovery that there is no antagonism, but rather a most intimate connection between the elements of our being. It is largely because Mr. Symonds is so resolute to live in this conception of the whole, that his work is so sound and so stimulating, and that he represents to-day whatever is best in English criticism.

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It is doubtful whether Mr. Symonds possesses the dangerous gift of a keen intuition. A piercing and apparently instantaneous insight into the heart of his subject, sometimes uncertain, as in Coleridge, sometimes certain, as in Heine, frequently marks the discursive and catholic critic. Carlyle had a faculty as uncertain as Coleridge's, as keen as Heine's, for cutting into the core of a thing. It is possible that one of his main claims to remembrance will be found to lie in the portraits he has given us of his contemporaries. From this point of view the Reminiscences are peculiarly valuable. Carlyle was Aristophanic, it may be, and his portraits have sometimes even a faint gleam of the Greek's lyric loveliness on them; but for criticism of the piercing, heliocentric sort there is often nothing to be compared to them, although, wherever prejudice or partiality comes in, it is always liable to go hopelessly astray. In criticism of this kind Swinburne is now, without any rival, the chief English representative. More purely literary than Carlyle, his intuitions are also, on the whole, accompanied and held in check by a more exact knowledge. At the best they are keen, vital, audacious, springing from a free and genuine insight. But Swinburne also is not reliable where his sympathies or antipathies are too strongly called forth. He is better worth listening to when he speaks of Ford and the Elizabethan dramatists generally, than when he speaks of Hugo or De Musset. For all that is keen and intense his

The Present Position of English Criticism
perception is vivid; he criticises admirably what is great in the Brontes; his failure to appreciate George Eliot is almost complete. Swinburne has also another difficulty to contend with. Sometimes his prose style is a very flame of power and splendour. At other times it is singularly awkward, and clanks behind him in an altogether hopeless and helpless fashion. What way of describing things can be more stale, flat, and unprofitable than this discovered without much search--"the great company of witnesses, by right of articulate genius, and might of intelligent appeal against all tenets and all theories of sophists, and of saints which tend directly or indirectly to pamper or to stimulate, to fortify or to excuse, the tyrannous instinct or appetite," etc.? One scarcely recognises there the swift hand of the poet.
If a brief review of English criticism in its higher aspects reveals the fact that our critics are but a feeble folk--with exceptions, indeed, that are brilliant, though, even then, for the most part, erratic--it is still worth while to make that review. It is well to call them before us, and, for our own private guidance, try to define to ourselves what it is and what it is not that they have to give us; where we may follow them, and where we should forbear. Criticism is a complex development of psychological science, and if it is to reach any large and strong growth, it must be apprehended seriously in all its manifestations.

This review of Edward Carpenter's TOWARDS DEMOCRACY was published, unsigned, in PAPERS FOR THE TIMES of February, 1886. Carpenter himself was interested, and seemed even a little surprised, to find himself here ranked among the mystics.
THE form of literary expression which has found its chief exponent in Walt Whitman has received an important adherent in Mr. Edward Carpenter, whose Towards Democracy, published two years ago, has just been re-published with many additions. Whether, as some enthusiasts loudly assert, this new form of art is to supersede the stricter metrical forms--a very unlikely result --or not, it has fully established its right to exist as a flexible and harmonious vehicle for imaginative conceptions which scarcely admit of adequate expression in the more orthodox forms. It is not, however, really correct to speak of this as a new form; it is one of the first in which the human imagination found voice, and it formed the medium for the relatively ancient Hebrew psalms and prophecies:--
"Come on, therefore: let us enjoy the good things that are present, and let us speedily use the creatures like as in youth.

"Towards Democracy "
"Let us fill ourselves with costly wine and ointments, and let no flower of the spring pass by us. Let us crown ourselves with rosebuds before they be withered.
"Let none of us go without his part of our voluptuousness; let us leave tokens of our joyful-ness in every place. For this is our portion and our lot is this."
One might almost mistake these words of The Wisdom of Solomon for a passage from Leaves of Grass, and many parts of Isaiah and Ezekiel reach a much higher rhythmical level.
Let us, however, turn from the form to the substance of Mr. Carpenter's book. It must be said at once that the democracy towards which we are advancing, according to Mr. Carpenter (as it is needless to tell those who are acquainted with the admirable little tracts he has published from time to time, such as Desirable Mansions and England's Ideal), is far from having much resemblance to that huge beast whose advent Renan, Scherer and Maine contemplate with doleful emotions. "A black and horned Ethiopian," indeed, he calls it, but the freedom and equality he announces is that of the soul, "for which the heroes and lovers of all ages have laid down their lives," and of which political freedom and institutions are only the outward but necessary shadows. Democracy, he finely says, is that "which first expresses itself in the flower of the eye or the appearance of the skin."

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"I conceive a millennium on earth--a millennium not of riches, nor of mechanical facilities, nor of intellectual facilities, nor absolutely of immunity from disease, nor absolutely of immunity from pain; but a time when men and women all over the earth shall ascend and enter into relation with their bodies--shall attain freedom and joy."
It need scarcely be said that Mr. Carpenter is keenly sensitive to the contrast between such a millennium and the England of to-day. It is, indeed, as frequently happens, through his perception of the wrongness of our modern life that he rises to a perception of a coming righteousness; the optimism springs out of pessimism.
"O England, do I not know thee?--as in a nightmare strangled, tied and bound. Thy poverty, when through thy filthy courts, from tangles of matted hair, gaunt women with venomous faces look upon me;
"When I turn from this and consider throughout the length and breadth of the land, not less but more hateful, the insane greed of wealth--of which poverty and its evils are but the necessary obverse and counterpart;
"When I see deadly respectability sitting at its dinner-table, quaffing its wine, and discussing the rise and fall of stocks;
"When I see the struggle, the fear, the envy, the profound infidelity (so profound that it is almost unconscious of itself) in which the moneyed classes live;

"Towards Democracy "
"When I see avenues of young girls and women, with sideway flopping heads, debarred from work, debarred from natural sexuality, weary to death with nothing to do (and this thy triumph, O deadly respectability discussing stocks!);
"When I look for help from the guides and see only a dead waste of aimless, abject, close-shaven, shabby, simpering, flat, pompous, pecked, punctilious faces:
"O England, whither--strangled, tied and bound--whither, whither art thou come? "
But from the contemplation of the England of to-day we are gradually led up to a vision of the higher Democracy, and the poem ends in a paean of joy that grows almost delirious:--
"Radiant health!
"O kisses of sun and wind, tall fir trees and moss-covered rocks! O boundless joy of Nature on the mountain tops, coming back at last to you!
"See! the Divine Mother goes forth with her babe (all creation circles round). God dwells once more in a woman's womb, friend goes with friend, flesh cleaves to flesh, the path that rounds the Universe.
"O every day sweet and delicious food! Kisses to the lips of sweet smelling fruit and bread, milk and green herbs. Strong, well-knit muscles, quick healing, glossy skin, body for kisses all over!
"Radiant health! to breathe, O joy! to sleep, ah! never enough to be expressed!
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"For the taste of fruit ripening warm in the sun, for the distant sight of the deep liquid sea; for the touch of the air on my face, or creeping over my unclothed body, for the rustling sound of it in the trees, and the sight of thin tall stems springing so lightly from the earth.
"Joy, joy, and thanks for ever! "
Like Walt Whitman, Mr. Carpenter has a profound sense of the mystery and significance of the body: he cannot see any salvation for man till he is able to enter into pure and frank relation with his own body, the latest and best gift of nature, so long concealed; it is by his body, he insists, that man ascends and knows himself and he cannot treat it too reverently. "The body is the root of the soul."
"Recurved and close lie the little feet and hands, close as in the attitude of sleep folds the head, the little lips are not yet parted;
"The living mother-flesh folds round in darkness, the mother's life is an unspoken prayer, her body a temple of the Holy One.
"I am amazed and troubled, my child, she whispers--at the thought of you; I hardly dare to speak of it, you are so sacred;
"When I feel you leap I do not know myself any more--I am filled with wonder and joy--Ah! if any injury should happen to you!
"I will keep my body pure, very pure; the sweet air will I breathe and pure water drink; I will stay out in the open, hours together, that my

"Towards Democracy "
flesh may become pure and fragrant for your sake;
"Holy thoughts will I think; I will brood in the thought of mother-love. I will fill myself with beauty: trees and running brooks shall be my companions;
"And I will pray that I may become transparent --that the sun may shine and the moon, my beloved, upon you.
"Even before you are born."
Our first thought on opening this volume for the first time is that we have come across a weak imitation of Leaves of Grass; but on growing familiar with Towards Democracy we find that we have here a distinct individuality, with, indeed, points of contact with Whitman, and using the same mode of expression, but a new and genuine voice nevertheless, not a mere echo. Even the form is not quite the same; it is flowing and eloquent rather than with the massive Aveight of Whitman's interrupted elephantine steps. There is a strenuous vitality in Whitman; his voice is like a trumpet; he radiates life and energy from a vast centre of vital heat; he is the expression of an immense dilatation of the individual personality. But in this volume the bounds of personality are, as it were, loosened; and we have instead the soothing voice of an almost impersonal return to joy. Mr. Carpenter on the whole does not strive nor cry; he lifts up, rather, a tender voice of love and healing. It is the note of

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Consolation rather than the stimulating "barbaric yawp" that we hear.
"As long as you harbour motives, so long are you giving hostages to the enemy--while you are a slave (to this and that) you can only obey. It is not you who are acting at all.
"Brush it all aside.
"Pass disembodied out of yourself. Leave the husk, leave the long, long prepared and perfected envelope.
"Enter into the life which is eternal. Pass through the gate of indifference into the palace of mastery, through the door of love into the house of deliciousness.
"Give away all that you have, become poor and without possessions--and behold! you shall become lord and sovereign of all things." For this messenger of the new Democracy is a mystic; it is the bold and gentle spirit of St. Francis that we hear anew; and the modern man, too, as he looks at the horse and the cat, and the ant on the grass by the barn door asks: "Do you not know your mother and your sister and your brother are among them?" The human heart still cries out for consolation and the old oracles with ever new voices still utter their responses.
We have been looking rather at the democratic and religious aspects of Towards Democracy than at its artistic or poetic aspects. There are, however, many passages full of poetic charm, of large and gracious imagery, of tender and delicate

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observation of nature. Of the shorter poems which form the larger part of the book, "York Minster," "In the Drawing Room," "After Long Ages," are among the best. "High in my Chamber," and passages in "After Long Ages," reveal Mr. Carpenter's command of his form; there is a swift and sustained melody in them which is unlike anything that Whitman has done. "Squinancy Wort" is a brightly expressed fancy. "Have Faith "is a brief and pregnant compendium of mystical philosophy, such as found in Eckart one of its chief exponents; and like Eckart, Mr. Carpenter asserts the perilous doctrine that "whoever dwells among thoughts dwells in the region of delusion and disease." "On an Atlantic Steamship" is a true and vivid fragment of observation. This book--with its revolt against the overweighted civilisation of our lives, with its frank reverence for the human body, with the clinging tenderness of its view of religious emotion--must not be accepted, however startling its thesis may sometimes appear, as an isolated fact. On the one hand it represents in a modern dress one of the most ancient modes of human thought and feeling. On the other hand it is allied to some of the most characteristic features of the modern world. In America Emerson long since upheld in his own lofty and austere fashion a like conception of life and the soul. Walt Whitman has sought to represent such an ideal in action in the living world. Thoreau, the finest flower of the school of Antisthenes, felt

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an irresistible impulse to reduce life to its lowest terms, and he did so with a practical wisdom which saved him from approaching the tub of Diogenes. "Our life," he has well said, "is but the soul made known by its fruits the body. The whole duty of men may be expressed in one line: make to yourself a perfect body." In England, from many various and indeed opposite directions, the same cry is raised in the presence of the heavy burden of modern civilisation. Mr. William Morris, who has identified himself with the cause of Socialism, is never weary of proclaiming that for life's sake we have lost the reasons for living. Dr. Richardson, a vigorous opponent oT Socialism, tells us the same thing, that health of body and mind is the only standard of wealth, that the extreme wealth of the rich and the extreme poverty of the poor ultimately reduce richest and poorest to the same level--leaving them alike in physical and mental weakness, in selfish indifference to the suffering of others. And now Mr. Carpenter would have us consider whether men do well "to condemn themselves to pick oakum of the strands of real life for ever." Probably his chief distinguishing characteristic is that element of mystic religion to which reference has more than once been already made, and which is most distinctly marked in his latest work. The mystic element in Whitman is kept in check by his strong sense of external reality and multiplicity. Tired of the hopeless wretchedness of life, the mystic finds a

"Towards Democracy "
door of deliverance within his own heart. It is idle to rebel, as some would have us do, against this impulse towards freedom and joy, although it has led to superstition, to unbridled licence, to long arrests of human progress. We are compelled to regard it--after the sexual passion which is the very life of the race itself--as man's strongest and most persistent instinct. So long as it is saved from fanaticism by a strenuous devotion to science, by a perpetual reference to the moral structure of society, it will always remain an integral portion of the whole man in his finest developments.


Published in the PIONEER for October, 1889, and signed H.E. At this period Paul Bourget had not yet become the champion of an anti-modern reactionism, but it would seem that I detected in his work the germs of later developments which for me were of little significance, and I read nothing of his after 1889. But at that time he was still, above all, the author of the ESSAIS DE PSYCHOLOGIE CONTEMPORAINE, a work, though in late editions he has toned down some of its- utterances, memorable and almost epoch-marking.
OF the younger generation of French writers Paul Bourget--successively poet, critic, novelist--is the most prominent and perhaps the most interesting. Even in England his name at all events is well known; it would not be safe to assume that his books are also well known; and yet they are marked by certain qualities which make them worth the study of anyone who desires to know the best that young France has to give, and also to understand a very important phase of the modern spirit.
Bourget first appeared as a poet; he has at intervals published several volumes of poems. In poetry he has been described as un lakiste Parisien, an expression which at all events indicates his peculiar complexity; but his poetic work also

A Note on Paul Bourget
reveals influences from Baudelaire, from Shelley, from Poe (whose love of mystery appeals strongly to the imagination of modern France), and from less known poets.
These poems, especially, perhaps, the volume called Aveux, clearly indicate Bourget's dominant tendency from the first to restless and unceasing self-analysis; they are full of the struggle between life and the ideal, of the immense thirst for life and the irresistible tendency towards the dreams of the ideal, the sense of the sterility of passion and the impotence of life--that pessimism, in short, which was very far from being the exclusive property of young Bourget. "This Satan," he wrote in his first volume, "takes my passions and kills them, and then exposes the mangled limbs of my ideal body--just as a surgeon does with a hospital corpse--and yet, as I see him do it, I feel a strange fascination, rather than anger."
This is youthful, undoubtedly; Bourget's poems are chiefly interesting because they help us to understand the man's personality. As a poet there is a certain ineffectual effort about him; even as a novelist, he fails to leave a feeling of complete satisfaction. It is as a critic--in the volumes of the Essais de Psychologic Contemporaine--that Bourget reaches his full development. He has ceased to talk openly of his "membres dechires" and to lament the sterility of life; his restless and sensitive spirit has at last found adequate occupation in, as he explains it, indicating the examples

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which "the distinguished writers of to-day offer to the imagination of the young people who seek to know themselves through books." So that in his sympathetic and searching examination of these writers, Bourget's Satan is still really analysing, in a more heightened form, the elements of his own nature: this gives a peculiar meaning and personal impress to his work.
In these two volumes, in which there is not a page without some keen critical insight, some fine suggestion for thought, Bourget deals, then, with the psychological physiognomy of certain leading literary figures, chiefly belonging to modern France, and with the psychological atmosphere which has made them possible--Renan, Baudelaire, Taine, Flaubert, Beyle, Tourgueneff, Dumas, Le-conte de Lisle, the De Goncourts, Amiel. His aim is thus explained in the Preface: "The reader will not find in these pages what may properly be termed criticism. Methods of art are only analysed in so far as they are signs, the personality of the authors is hardly indicated, there is not, I believe, a single anecdote. I have desired neither to discuss talent nor to paint character. My ambition has been to record some notes capable of serving the historian of the moral life during the second half of the nineteenth century in France." Each figure is treated with reference to the current influence which it represents; thus in writing of Taine, Bourget deals with the slowly penetrating spirit of science; Dumas, the dramatic moralist,

A Note on Paul Bourget
serves to introduce a subtle discussion of some of the modern problems connected with love; Flaubert, and that style of imperishable marble in which he slowly carved his great creations, is a text for some singularly keen observations on the profound significance of style. The essay on Renan is probably the finest; Renan is peculiarly amenable to Bourget's delicate feminine methods of analysis; the characteristics of Renan's spirit and manner are set down with insurpassable felicity. On the other hand the account of Taine is probably the least satisfactory; Taine's virile (perhaps extravagantly virile) methods, his strong, direct positive grip of things, does not easily lend itself to the sinuous sympathetic methods of Bourget's analysis.
There are at least two points, on which Bourget especially insists, which help to explain his attitude and also much in that contemporary "moral life" which he has set himself to analyse. The first of these (introduced in the essay on Baudelaire) is the theory of decadence. Bourget uses this word as it is generally used (but, as Gautier pointed out, rather unfortunately) to express the literary methods of a society which has reached its limits of expansion and maturity--"the state of society," in his own words, "which produces too large a number of individuals who are unsuited to the labours of the common life. A society should be like an organism. Like an organism, in fact, it may be resolved into a federation of smaller

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organisms, which may themselves be resolved into a federation of cells. The individual is the social cell. In order that the organism should perform its functions with energy it is necessary that the organisms composing it should perform their functions with energy, but with a subordinated energy, and in order that these lesser organisms should themselves perform their functions with energy, it is necessary that the cells comprising them should perform their functions with energy, but with a subordinated energy. If the energy of the cells becomes independent, the lesser organisms will likewise cease to subordinate their energy to the total energy and the anarchy which is established constitutes the decadence of the whole. The social organism does not escape this law and enters into decadence as soon as the individual life becomes exaggerated beneath the influence of acquired well-being, and of heredity. A similar law governs the development and decadence of that other organism which we call language. A style of decadence is one in which the unity of the book is decomposed to give place to the independence of the page, in which the page is decomposed to give place to the independence of the phrase, and the phrase to give place to the independence of the word." A decadent style, in short, is an anarchistic style in which everything is sacrificed to the development of the individual parts. Apuleius, Petronius, St. Augustine, Tertullian, are examples of this decadence in ancient literature;

A Note on Paul Bourget
Gautier and Baudelaire in French literature; Poe and especially Whitman (in so far as he can be said to have a style) in America; in English literature Sir Thomas Browne is probably the most conspicuous instance; later De Quincey, and, in part of their work, Coleridge and Rossetti. The second point (discussed in relation to Renan) is indicated by the word dilettantism. Like decadence this is not a fortunate word; it has been identified in our minds with those defects of frivolity and superficiality into which the dilettante spirit most easily falls, just as the style of decadence sometimes tends to represent what Baudelaire called "la phosphorescence de la pourriture." At the best it is marked by its universality of sympathy and by its striving after wholeness. The typical dilettante is Goethe. "Dilettantism is much less a doctrine," Bourget remarks, "than a disposition of the mind, at once very intelligent and very emotional, which inclines us in turn towards the various forms of life, and leads us to lend ourselves to all these forms without giving ourselves to any. It is quite certain that the ways of tasting happiness are very varied--according to epochs, climates, age, temperaments, according to days even, or hours. Usually a man makes his choice and disapproves of the choice of others, hardly understands it even. Sympathy is not sufficient; a refined scepticism is necessary, and the art of transforming this scepticism into an instrument of enjoyment. Dilettantism becomes

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then a delicate science of intellectual and emotional metamorphosis. ... It seems that humanity experiences a deep repugnance to dilettantism, doubtless because humanity understands instinctively that it lives by affirmations, and would die of uncertainty. Among the famous dilettantes » whose fame it has tolerated while marking it with visible disfavour, we may range that adorable Alcibiades who delighted to play such various parts, and that mysterious Caesar who embodied in himself so many persons. Dilettantism was the favourite condition of the great analysts of the . Renaissance, of which Leonardo da Vinci with his universal aptitudes, the incomplete complexity of his work, his strange dream of beauty, remains the enigmatic and delightful type. Montaigne also, and his pupil Shakespeare, have practised this curious art of exploiting their intellectual uncertainties for the profit of the caprices of their imaginations. But the creative sap still flows charged with energy in the veins of these children of a century of action. Only at a later period in the life of a race, when extreme civilisation has little by little abolished the faculty of creation, to substitute that of comprehension, does dilettantism reveal all that poetry of which the most modern of the ancients, Virgil, had a presentiment, if he really let fall that saying which tradition has transmitted to us: ' One grows tired of everything, except of comprehending.'" Bourget refers to the disfavour with which the dilettante spirit has

A Note on Paul Bourget
always been received. This disfavour is not without reason; it is true that just as the "decadent" style exhibits the most ardent and elaborate search for perfection, so the dilettante spirit is the realisation of those aspirations for which we are always striving, but from its very perfection, its breadth and universality, it has no to-morrow. It is the style of Raphael; when we have reached it there can be no further progress on those lines: a fresh start has to be made. These are two of the problems which Bourget develops in these fascinating Essais, finding, as he tells us, sometimes an answer of sorrow, sometimes one of faith and hope, most often the former, for his temperament is strongly tinged with pessimism; and for him the two great forces of the modern world, Science and Democracy, have dried up the old sources of the moral life, and furnished none that are fresh.
Bourget's novels are by no means the least interesting part of his work. In novel-writing his style is very simple, very delicate and precise: except for its almost scientific exactness it has nothing of the naturalistic school's burden of elaborate detail. His method, as we should expect, is above all psychological and very sincere. The range of characterisation is not wide; there is usually a man of fairly simple nature, and a background formed of several almost characterless persons. The chief personage is always a woman. In his treatment of these women--Noemie, Claire,

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Therese--lies the strength of Bourget's novels. When he turns to them he is at once at home; his own essentially feminine nature enables him to unravel with perfect insight and sympathy the complex and unharmonised natures with which he has endowed them.
Let us take Cruelle Enigme which Taine is said to have declared to be the best novel produced during recent years. The central figure is Therese de Sauve, a young married woman of twenty-five, whose face has the serene and gracious beauty, the mysterious smile, of Luini's Madonnas. Her husband is described as a coarse and sensual man who has failed to gain any influence over her heart, and who now leaves her to herself. She has had two lovers since her marriage, but in each case has been speedily disillusioned. She now meets and loves Hubert Liauran, three years younger than herself, who has spent all his life at home with his mother and grandmother. Of course he yields her all the fresh devotion of his young heart. He satisfies the purest and sweetest instincts of Therese's nature, and she yields him, not indeed, complete sincerity, but tender and almost maternal love. In response to the usual craving of lovers to be alone together in a foreign land, she crosses the Channel to Folkestone, where Hubert joins her for a couple of days, and they afterwards find a place of meeting in Paris. But there is another side to Therese's nature; there is a craving for strong sensuous impressions, an instinctive

A Note on Paul Bourget
fascination in the presence of great sensual vitality. She is staying at Trouville, away from her husband and Hubert, and there meets a man who is noted for his power over women. He is merely a fine animal, but Therese yields to him almost at once; in a few days, however, realising what she has done, she suddenly leaves Trouville and returns to Paris. After a time a rumour reaches Hubert; he will not believe it, but he repeats it to Therese, who still loves him and will not conceal what she has done. He rushes wildly away; for weeks he broods alone; at length he meets Therese to bid her a last farewell over the ruins of his dearest illusions; at the moment, however, of touching her hands, the old passion returns and he falls into her arms. But it is not the same love; he no longer has any right to reproach her.
This--crudely and briefly stated--is the story of the cruel enigma, if it is an enigma, which Bourget presents to us. One scarcely thinks of calling the story a work of art, it is told with such simplicity, such sincerity; the interest, which is always sustained, appears as much that attaching to a psychological "case" as to a novel; at every turn we find traces of a singularly fine and delicate observation. Bourget writes with full consciousness that the great novelists of his country--men like Beyle, Balzac, Flaubert--have never hesitated to analyse, keenly and boldly, all the mysteries of passion; he is aware that his own task is a modest one. But how unlike the average English novel!
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To realise this let us for a moment compare Cruelle Enigme with a typical English novel which appeared at the same time, and was received with great applause, a novel which deals with a situation superficially the same as that of Bourget's, but with an entirely different set of characters and from an entirely different standpoint. Colonel Enderby's Wife, written by a lady who calls herself "Lucas Malet," is a careful and powerfully told story of an unhappy marriage. Colonel Enderby comes of a race of commonplace country gentlemen of the type of the homme moyen sensuel, but he is, we are told, a "doubtfully successful exception to this general type," a true and simple-hearted man. Jessie, his young wife, is described as a faun-like survival from the old world; she has no human passion; she cannot love; she shrinks from the presence of pain and disease. When the Colonel discovers that he is suffering from heart-disease, which demands constant care and rest, if his life is to be preserved, he realises that he will be an object of dislike and contempt to his wife, and resolves, knowing all that it means, to lead his ordinary life and satisfy all the caprices of Jessie, who is indifferent and seems to be flirting with other men. This narrative is marked in the telling by a certain horror of being ridiculous, by an ostentation of cynical materialism--this is a curious characteristic of the English novel in general as compared to the French--combined with a profound sense of what conventionality

A Note on Paul Bourget
demands. Lucas Malet has an artistic conscience, but one feels that it is raised on a conventionally moral, not, as with the French novelist, on a psychological basis; she calls the novel "a moral dissecting-room." It is evident that Therese's relation to Hubert is regarded as scarcely less than ideal; M. de Sauve is practically non-existent; even Hubert, though he has been brought up religiously, has only a passing compunction at Therese's adultery. Again, Jessie's failure to love her husband is not, like Therese's failure to be true to Hubert, due to passion; it is described as due to the absence of passion. Jessie excites comment in her circle because she dances frequently with a young neighbour, but he dances well--that is all; for the rest she thinks him a bore. The ordinary English novelist would find it hard to paint Jessie as passionate without taking from her even that charm that she has; Therese never fails in womanliness; she is always lovable. We are not likely to see in England, at present, any successful union of the French and English novel, because our great English novelists have not touched the facts of life with the same frankness and boldness, and their conception of normal life is unduly restricted. Cruelle Enigme could not be written in England with Bourget's moderation and simplicity; it would be felt to be a little "outrageous," and the recent English novelists who have been touched by French influence constantly offend by their crude and vulgar

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extravagance. Few of them possess even the degree of artistic earnestness and consistency which marks the best work of Mr. George Moore, such as much of the Mummer's Wife. But Mr. Moore can scarcely be called English at all, except in the occasional exaggerations of his work. English novels are still for the most part what at one time French novels were, romantic; they are feebly struggling after a new ideal. We need, as it has been well said, a synthesis of naturalism and romanticism; we need to reconstitute the complete man, instead of studying him in separate pieces; to put a living soul in the clothed body. It is because they have to some extent done this that the great Russian novelists--Dostoieffsky, Tourgueneff and Tolstoi--are so significant; and Bourget, with his more limited means, seems to be striving towards the same ideal.


This article appeared in THE LANCET for August 13th, 1892, and was followed up next week by a vigorous plea on the same lines from Charles Roberts, F.R.C.S., who at that period was actively promoting the study of anthropology. He pointed out that botany in its pure form had already disappeared from the medical curriculum and might well be followed by much anatomical, physiological, and especially microscopical work, to make room for the more directly human and practical study of anthropology, which, in addition to the claim I had made for it, would be of high value in public health work. But, so far, our arguments have been in vain.
VIRCHOW, who adds to his other claims to fame that of being the first of living anthropologists, has recently confessed that his attention was directed to the science of anthropology by the difficulties he encountered in the study of the insane. Charcot, again, frequently impresses on his pupils the importance of studying the healthy nude, and of an acquaintance with anthropometric canons, as an aid to the diagnosis of abnormal conditions. These utterances of two of the most honoured of our teachers in very different fields suggest that there is a defect in our medical courses, as they exist at present ill

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England, which demands, at the least, some consideration. As evidence of the close relationship between anthropology and medical practice, it is enough to mention that in spite of the difficulties we at present place in the way, with a few exceptions (in which zoology alone led up to anthropology), the chief anthropologists of the last half century have been medical men--in not a few cases very distinguished in the profession; at the least, they have started as students of medicine. It is sufficient to mention in France Broca, Topinard, Lacassagne, Manouvrier, Collignon, and Letour-neau; in Germany, around and below Virchow, Ranke, Schaeffhausen, Ploss, Bartels and many others; in Italy, Mantegazza, Lombroso, Sergi; in our own country, Galton, Beddoe, Sir Wm. Turner, Flower, and Garson, while to a somewhat earlier period belong the great names of Prichard and Thurnam. While every medical man would find a slight acquaintance with anthropology some help in practice, there are certain branches of practice in which some knowledge of anthropology is of especial assistance; for example, practice abroad and asylum practice. No country sends out so large a body of medical men into all parts of the world, but the amount of scientific work done among the races of our great empire by these men is so small that it is scarcely perceptible. French medical men have done far more for their few colonies, and the medico-legal and anthropological studies which have come from the Lyons

Anthropology in Medical Education
school, under the inspiring influence of Lacassagne,
are especially worthy of honour.

What is true generally of the English medical man abroad is equally true of the English alienist at home, and must be so, since the study of anthropology is largely the study of the manifestations of the brain and nervous systems. In the practical treatment of the insane England stands before every other country; in the scientific study of the insane no leading country is so backward. Elsewhere the exact study of madness is making rapid progress; it is beginning to be recognised that the great truth that knowledge means measurement (scire est mensurare) fully applies to the brain and nervous system. But in this country the rule-of-thumb method still reigns nearly everywhere. In the hands of a master in psychiatry the rule-of-thumb method more often than not leads to perfectly reliable conclusions as to the mental status and condition of the subject before him, but it has two obvious disadvantages: it can only be trusted in the hands of a master; while even a master's mere impressions, however trustworthy, add nothing to the common stock of scientific knowledge. In actual practice, with our present knowledge of neurology, it is becoming a great advantage to the alienist to be able to demonstrate that his subject is twisted in anatomical structure and perverted in physiological action; while, so far as science is concerned, in the end it is only accurate observation that counts,

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All that can be said as to the state of psychiatry generally in England applies in even a stronger degree to that special branch of it which deals with the criminal. During a period of nearly twenty years no contribution to criminal anthropology of any value appeared in this country, and although of late there may be said to have been some revival of the science among us, it is still in an infantile stage. Of this a striking proof is furnished by the non-appearance of English representatives at the International Congresses of Criminal Anthropology which have been attended by delegates from all parts of the world. Maudsley and others have, indeed, preached concerning the desirability of an exact study of criminals; but while in Italy Lombroso, Marro, Ottolenghi and Rossi have alone examined according to modern scientific methods over 3,000 criminals, English alienists have been content to leave the first tentative practical efforts to a prison chaplain. It would, however, be unjust to put this down merely to apathy. It is largely due to ignorance. My own extensive correspondence with prison surgeons (as well as with medical officers of asylums) has shown that they often possess genuine scientific interest in the phenomena presented to them, but that they do not know how to observe rightly and record the facts that come before them, and would gladly receive hints that would enable them to bring forward results of value to scientific medicine. It should be part of the business of medical education to give these hints.

Anthropology in Medical Education
We are often told that the medical student of to-day is overburdened with study; and, although it must be remembered that the period of his studies is now being enlarged, there is no doubt truth in this statement. It becomes the more necessary, on the one hand, to place in a period antecedent to medical studies proper the preliminary scientific courses; and, on the other hand, to cut away without remorse those branches of knowledge which have ceased to possess any close connection with modern medicine. In certain directions it is probable that the studies of medical students might with advantage be abbreviated or rendered optional. The study of botany, however valuable and fascinating, no longer possesses any special advantage as a preparation for medical practice, now that the physician is very clearly differentiated from the herbalist and "medical botanist." An exact knowledge of the pharmacopoeia also, which once embraced almost the largest part of the doctor's work, may now safely be left to the medical antiquarian. If it is necessary to make room for anthropology by the omission or contraction of other preliminary courses, it is not difficult to put one's finger on studies which for the student of medicine have come to possess a value which is merely traditional.
The point at which anthropology comes into medical study is very clear. Human anatomy and comparative anatomy both lead directly up to it.

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The study of human anatomy we cannot afford to contract. The comparative anatomy course, however, might well be arranged so as to afford a general view of the province of anthropology, while passing lightly over those earlier stages of animal life which have less concern for the medical man. With these lectures should be associated a brief course of practical demonstrations. We can scarcely expect at present that individual medical schools should be at the expense of fitting up laboratories of physical anthropology. This point would be much simplified if the excellent suggestion of Sir Andrew Clark was adopted--namely, that there should be a common centre for the teaching of the non-medical branches of medical education. In the meanwhile there are existing centres which by arrangement might no doubt be utilised. There is Gallon's Anthropometric Laboratory in active operation; there is the Anthropological Institute, which might become a centre of work; and, above all, there is the Museum of the College of Surgeons, so rich in objects of anthropological interest, and which has not seldom been presided over by eminent anthropologists.
The time seems to have come when some small preliminary step in the direction here indicated should at length be taken. In Paris the anthropological Musee Broca, with its active laboratory and the Anthropological School, has long formed part, as it were, of the medical schools. It is not necessary for the medical man of to-day to know

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much of the lower animal forms; still less necessary is it that he should have any thorough knowledge of plants. But it is increasingly necessary that he should understand the science of man.


This appeared in the ATLANTIC MONTHLY for March, 1893.
MANY books have been written about genius. Usually they have been constructed by heaping up anecdotes of more or less dubious authenticity; or else by bringing to the front those unhappy subjects of genius who, like Tasso and Rousseau and Cowper, have been the victims of insanity. Within the last few months, under the inspiring influence of Lombroso, a new step has been taken, and an attempt made to measure accurately the physical capacities of genius. A dozen or more Italian scientists and artists obligingly lent themselves to minute ophthalmoscopic and other investigations, without startling results; and later on, no doubt, the man of genius, like the criminal and the lunatic, will be systematically examined and measured.
Little attention has, however, been given to the interesting study of the elements that go to the making of genius, to what we may call its etiology, and which must be sought for mainly before birth. How did the shiftless Stratford tradesman come to be Shakespeare's father, and Micawber the father of Dickens? To what extent can the facts of the

The Ancestry of Genius
parentage of genius be reduced to law? That this question has not yet been seriously considered is due in part, no doubt, to its complexity, in part to the extreme difficulty of obtaining reliable and precise information; insurmountable, indeed, in the case of an individual who lived several centuries ago. Even in fairly recent times, the most elementary facts regarding the mothers of many men of genius are quite unknown; and in estimating the race to which men of genius belong, it is not unusual to disregard the mother, although, it is scarcely necessary to say, modern investigations in heredity lead us to regard the mother's contribution of tendencies as of absolutely equal value with the father's. It is only by the patient collection of facts that we can hope to throw light on the causes that determine genius, and I propose to bring forward a portion of the results of investigations I have lately made into this subject. I select a small but interesting group of facts bearing upon a single aspect of the matter: the ancestry of some of the chief English poets and imaginative writers of recent years, with reference to the question of race.1
Let us, first of all, take the five English poets whose supremacy during the last quarter of a century is universally acknowledged, Tennyson, Browning, Swinburne, Rossetti, and Morris. What
1 The information on which this article is founded has in most cases been obtained from the writers in question. I am indebted to them for the readiness with which they have answered my questions. Only in the case of Browning, among the English writers brought forward, have I been unable to add to the information already made public.

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is to be learned from an inquiry into the races, or combinations of races, that have gone to the making of these men?
Tennyson was one of the most English of English poets. He came of a family long established in the most Scandinavian county, and that contains the fairest-featured people to be found south of the Humber; and the name itself (Tonnesen) remains to-day purely Scandinavian.
"The Tennysons," writes Lord Tennyson, "come from a Danish part of England, and I have no doubt that you and others are right in giving them a Danish origin. An ancestor of my mother's, a M. Fauvel, or de Fauvel, one of the exiles at the time of the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, is French." He adds, "I have myself never made a study of my ancestry, but those who have tell me that through my great-grandmother, and through Jane Pitts, a still remoter grandmother, I am doubly descended from Plantagenets (Lionel, Duke of Clarence, and John of Lancaster), and this through branches of the Barons d'Eyncourt." These remoter interminglings are, however, of slight interest. Taken altogether, we see a predominantly Scandinavian stock of Tennysons mingling with the Fytches, Lincolnshire people, also, but with the foreign Huguenot strain.
Swinburne's ancestry, from the point of view of race, has, with some important differences, a general resemblance to Tennyson's. That is to say, the foundation is Scandinavian, but in this

The Ancestry oj Genius
case the more emphatic and turbulent Scandinavian of the north country, modified by distinct foreign Celtic and other influences. As Swinburne himself clearly expresses it, "The original root, of course, is purely Scandinavian, modified (possibly) by repeated exile in the cause of the Stuarts, and consequent French alliances." His great-grandfather, for instance, married a wife from the family of the Auvergnat Princes of Polignac. It is to this alliance that there is allusion in the "Summer in Auvergne," in the second series of Poems and Ballads, when the poet gazes on the ruin
"Of the old wild princes' lair
Whose blood in mine hath share.

Dead all their sins and days;
Yet in this red crime's rays
Some fiery memory stays
That scars their land."

With William Morris we reach a totally different district of England, and a new combination. He belongs to the Welsh border; and a border country, it may be noted in passing, is as favourable to the production of genius as it is to the production of crime. Both on the father's and the mother's side he belongs to Worcestershire, the home of a varied and well-compounded race, perhaps predominantly Saxon,1 though Mr. Morris is predominantly Welsh. The paternal grandmother,
1 Dr. Beddoe says that the physical type in East Worcestershire
"seems to be a cross between the Saxon and the Iberian."


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however, came from the Anglo-Danish county of Nottingham. "My father's father was Welsh, I believe," Mr. Morris writes, "and my mother's mother, also. My name is very common all along the border. The name," he adds, "is undoubtedly Cymric." It is certainly remarkable that the poet who, of all English poets of the century, has most closely identified himself with the Scandinavian traditions of the race should have, apparently, so little blood relationship with the north.
It is equally remarkable that Rossetti, a poet whose imagination has appeared to many critics distinctly and intimately English in character, should be English only on the side of one grandparent; the English blood, that is, being numerically equivalent only to twenty-five per cent. Gabriele Rossetti, the father, came of a family which throughout the eighteenth century, at all events, had lived on the Abruzzi coast, at Vasto. When an exile in London, Rossetti married the daughter of Gaetano Polidori, a Tuscan, who had married Anna Maria Pierce, who seems to have been of unmixed English blood, and who belongs to a family some of whose members attained to a certain amount of distinction. Her mother's name is believed to have been Arrow. It is worthy of note that the name Rossetti seems to indicate a fair and ruddy northern race. Gabriele Rossetti used to say that the original name of his race was Delia Guardia (families of that name still live at Vasto), but that, ruddy hair and complexion

The Ancestry of Genius
having been brought into the family, the generation of Delia Guardia children on whom it became impressed came to be known as the Rossetti, a name which stuck to that branch of the race, and became its actual surname. Two of Gabriele's brothers (to say nothing of himself) were counted as local celebrities. His mother's surname was Pietrocola.1
In Browning's case we are able to go back a considerable distance, and to ascertain his component races with fair precision. The Brownings belonged to Dorset, and the poet's great-grandfather, Thomas Browning, was, as his name shows, of West Saxon stock, modified considerably, no doubt, by the old dark British blood which is plentiful in that neighbourhood. Thomas Browning married a Morris. This union produced a Robert Browning, who came up to London, entered the Bank of England, and played a successful though not brilliant part in the world. He married Margaret Tittle, a Creole, born in the West Indies. The poet himself, it may be added, was in early life of "olive" complexion, and liable to be mistaken for an Italian. In after life he became lighter. Robert Browning, the poet's father, was a versatile and talented man, though not so able an official as his father. He was a good draughtsman and a clever verse-writer. He married Sarianna Wiedemann, of Dundee. This was
1 For much of the information given above I am indebted to Mr, W. M. Rossetti.
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an entirely new departure, and united the dark southern stock to the fair northern race; for Sarianna Wiedemann's father was a German, said to belong to Hamburg, and her mother was Scotch. Browning's ancestry is very significant. If the Browning race had consciously conspired to make a cumulative series of trials in the effects of crossbreeding, they could not have chosen a more crucial series of experiments, and the final result certainly could not have been more successful. Browning himself was true to the instincts of his race when he carried the experiments one step farther, though on quite different lines, and married the chief English woman poet of his time.
When we turn from these five poets to contemporary writers whose claim to very high rank is not universally conceded, it is no longer easy to choose, and one is liable to the charge of admitting only those cases which seem to support a theory. I will bring forward a small but very varied group, containing the best-known living English imaginative writers (beyond those already mentioned) of whose ancestry I have detailed knowledge. There is, however, no reason to suppose that the addition of other names of equal rank would alter the character of the results. The list includes Mr. Coventry Patmore, Mr. Austin Dobson, the Hon. Roden Noel, Miss Olive Schreiner, Mr. Walter Pater, Mr. Baring Gould, and Mr. Thomas Hardy. It will be observed that there are here several writers of prose, but these are in their best work

The Ancestry of Genius
essentially poets. The most questionable figure is Mr. Thomas Hardy, whose poetic and yet delicately realistic work serves as a transition from the work of writers like the authors of Mehalah and The Story of an African Farm to that of essentially prosaic writers, like the authors of All Sorts and Conditions of Men and A Mummer's Wife. Mr. Coventry Patmore is English on the father's side, Scotch on the mother's, and one of his great-greatgrandfathers (Beckmann, the painter) was Prussian. Mr. Austin Dobson belongs to a Devonshire family on his mother's side, and his father was born in France, of a French mother. Mr. Roden Noel, who (as Lord Tennyson was also supposed to be) is descended from the Plantagenets, and who claims the Sidneys and Shakespeare's Earl of Southampton among his ancestors, inherits on both sides very various strains, recent and remote. These include an Irish (purely Celtic) element, Scotch Douglases, and Dutch Bentincks. Miss Schreiner is German, English, and Jewish. On her mother's side she belongs to an English family of Lyndalls, and on her father's to a Wurtemberg family in the neighbourhood of Stuttgart. The German paternal element (associated with dark brown hair and grey-blue eyes) by no means necessarily involves a marked Teutonic strain. Wurtemberg is the home of a brachycephalic race (very carefully studied from the anthropological standpoint by Von Holder), which is much more closely related to the typical Celts than to the

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typical Teutons; and Swabia, unlike the genuinely Teutonic regions of northern and eastern Germany, which have produced few or no poets, has always been a land of song, the birthplace of Schiller and Victor von Scheffel, and the richest nest of singing birds that Germany has to show. The maternal Lyndalls came from Scandinavian parts of England, and the name is Scandinavian. But the physical characteristics of the Lyndalls are not Scandinavian; they have very dark hair, and large dark eyes which impress strangers as Jewish. It is somewhat remarkable that this strongly marked element which has been so persistent is rather remote, and was introduced in the person of a Jewess, who was a great-great-grandmother to Miss Schreiner.
Mr. Pater, as the name indicates, comes of a family that on the father's side was originally French. Mr. Pater believes that the family is that to which the painter, J. B. Pater, belonged; not, however, descended from the painter, who had no children. The Paters certainly came from the same neighbourhood; that is, from Flanders, somewhere near Valenciennes. They were lace-makers and Catholics, and Mr. Pater's great-greatgrandfather settled in the very Anglo-Danish neighbourhood of Norwich. The family then took root in Buckinghamshire, where one branch of it, still Catholic, possesses considerable property. Watteau also belonged to Valenciennes, and it is curious to observe how faithfully Mr. Pater, with

The Ancestry of Genius
his subtle and delicate art, has preserved the
instincts of his Belgic race.

Mr. Baring Gould's interesting account of his ancestry I will give in his own words: "My family have held property in Devon for three hundred years and more, and have intermarried almost wholly in the Devon families, till the heiress married Charles Baring, son of John Baring of Exeter, son of Dr. Franz Baring of Bremen. But Charles Baring's mother was an Exeter woman. The Barings were pure Saxons. Before that, among the Goulds, the hair was dark and the eyes were hazel, judging from their pictures; after that, fair hair and blue eyes. My mother was a Bond, a Cornish family; my grandmother, a Sabine, and partly Irish; that is, in seventeenth century in Ireland, after that settled in Herts." One traces here very clearly the influence of race and its effects on one of the most singularly brilliant and versatile writers of our time. Mr. Thomas Hardy belongs to a Dorset family, which has not, apparently, encouraged foreign alliances, although the Hardys at a remote period are believed to have been a French family who emigrated from Jersey. Of Mr. Hardy's four grandparents, all belonged to Dorset except one, who came from Berkshire. His paternal great-grandmother, Mr. Hardy believes, was Irish. On the paternal side, also, a black-haired ancestor left very distinct traces, while on the mother's side the race was fairer, and closer to the ordinary Wessex-Saxon type.

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From the examination of these two groups of imaginative writers, chosen without reference to the question of heredity, the interesting fact emerges that, of the twelve persons cited, not one can be said to be of pure English race, while only four or five are even predominantly English. A more extended investigation would bring out the same result still more clearly. England is at the present time rich in poets. A general knowledge of a considerable number of them enables me to say that very few indeed are of even fairly pure English blood; the majority are, largely, or predominantly, of Irish, Gaelic, Welsh, or Cornish race, as a single glance, without any inquiry, is often enough to reveal.
If we turn to the rich and varied genius of France, we shall find similar results brought out in a way that is even more remarkable. In France, we meet with very various and distinct races, and we see the interaction of these races, as well as the commingling of remote foreign elements, from the negro blood which it is still easy to trace in the face of Alexandre Dumas, in certain aspects, to the Iroquois blood in Flaubert. French genius, from the point of view of race, is a large and attractive subject; but as I am dealing with it elsewhere, I will leave it untouched here. However, it is worthy of notice that the two imaginative French writers of this century who have attained widest fame, and have exercised the most revolutionary influence on literature, Victor Hugo and

The Ancestry of Genius
Zola, are both marked examples of the influence of cross-breeding. Hugo belonged, on the father's side, to the tall, fair, powerful Germanic race of Lorraine, where his ancestors cultivated the soil in the Vosges; on the mother's side, he belonged to the Breton race of the opposite end of France, a race with widely different physical and spiritual characteristics. Zola is the son of a distinguished Italian mathematician, born at Venice; his mother came from the central Beauce country of France: he has Italian, French, and Greek blood in his veins. The only living imaginative writer besides Zola who is exerting international revolutionary influence on literary art is Ibsen, another example of complex racial intermixture. His great-grandmother was Scotch, his paternal Scandinavian stock has received repeated infusions of German blood, and his mother was of German extraction.
In many of these complex combinations, we come upon the result not only of accretion of power due to cross-breeding, but of the fascination exerted by a startlingly new and unfamiliar personality. Ronsard, that brilliant child of the French Renaissance, whose name has scarcely yet lost its charm, though so few know his work, came of Hungarian or Bulgarian stock allied with the noblest families of France. St. Thomas, the one saint who for three hundred years charmed the cautious and sturdy English race, was the son of a French father, possibly also of a French mother. Pushkin,

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whose personality was as delightful to his contemporaries as his poetry, bore one of the proudest of Russian names, and in his veins ran the blood of an Abyssinian negro. A whole nation would never have gone joyfully to destruction under a leader they had themselves chosen, if that leader had not been Napoleon--the result of the mixture of two very distinct races, the Tuscan and the Corsican--who carried about him the charm of the unknown. Boulanger, who for a short time exerted an attraction that seemed so unaccountable, was the son of a Scotch lady, whom he was said to resemble, and to whom, doubtless, more than to his father, the Breton notary at Rennes, he owed his power of fascination.
The evidence I have brought forward as to the frequency of racial mingling in men of imaginative genius has been confined to a few particular groups; it could easily be increased, and I have made no use of the materials in my possession concerning Spanish, Italian, and Russian poets. It is clear that the proportion of mixed and foreign blood in the groups dealt with is much greater than would be found in a similar group of average persons. Anyone may test this by writing down at random the names of a like number of his acquaintance of average ability, and then investigating their race. In England, in such a group of seven ordinary persons, it is rare to find more than one of decidedly mixed race. But in the groups we have been considering the proportion of such individuals

The Ancestry of Genius
varies, at a moderate estimate, from fifty to seventy-five per cent., and the mingling is usually most distinct in the men of most distinguished genius.
I believe that if we take other groups of somewhat similar character, eminent painters, for example, we shall find the proportion smaller, though still marked. Among notable scientific men we should find the proportion of those with mixed blood lower still. Mr. Galton, who made a long list of contemporary British scientific men of ability, remarks that, "on an analysis of the scientific status of the men on my list, it appeared to me that their ability is higher, in proportion to their numbers, among those of pure race." The Border men come out exceedingly well, but the Anglo-Welsh and the Anglo-Irish would on the whole rank last. While we have found that among twelve eminent British imaginative writers no less than ten show more or less marked traces of foreign blood, and not one can be said to be pure English, Mr. Galton found that out of every ten distinguished British scientific men five were pure English, and only one had foreign blood. Among successful politicians, again, mixture of race appears to be still less common. It is worth while, however, in this connection, to quote an utterance of the most distinguished of living English politicians. "Now, you must know that I am a Scotchman," said Mr. Gladstone to an interviewer, "pure Scotch. In fact, no family can be purer than

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ours, which never mixed with extraneous blood except once in the seventeenth century." As a matter of fact, Mr. Gladstone unites, on his father's side, the Saxon Lowlander of the south of Scotland with, on his mother's side, the typical Highlander of the north, two utterly distinct races, although by accident confined within the same country. We always have to guard against these fallacies, but as a rule, no doubt, politicians of ability are of comparatively pure race. It has generally been believed by those who have concerned themselves with the philosophy of art that poetry is the highest and most complex form of human expression, and the result indicated by the evidence before us seems in accordance with that conclusion.
Looking at the matter somewhat broadly, and omitting minor variations, it may be said that two vigorous but somewhat widely divergent races (or groups of races) now occupy Europe and the lands that have been peopled from Europe. The one race is tall, fair, and usually long-headed; the other, short, dark, and usually broadheaded. Since the dawn of European history, at least, and with special vigour about a thousand years ago, the tall, fair, energetic race has been shed as a seminal principle from the north-east of Europe over a great part of the continent held by a darker and perhaps more civilised race. The physical characteristics of Europe have been very favourable to the spread and fusion of these fine races, and the

The Ancestry of Genius
outcome has been the strongest and most variously gifted breed of men that the world has seen. Wherever the races have remained comparatively pure we seldom find any high or energetic civilisation, and never any fine flowering of genius. Sweden, where the tall, fair, long-headed race exists in its purest form, has produced no imaginative genius. Auvergne, where the dark, broad-headed race may be found in great purity, has, in like manner, produced a vigorous but an undistinguished breed of men. Corsica and the Pyrenees-Orientales, where a fairly unmixed race of dark, long-headed men live, have, unlike Sicily or Gard, produced no poets. Wherever, on the other hand, we find a land where two unlike races, each of fine quality, have become intermingled and are in process of fusion, there we find a breed of men who have left their mark on the world, and have given birth to great poets and artists. Such are the men of Sicily, a race compounded of the most various elements from east and south and north, which has produced, and is to-day producing, so large a share of the genius of the Italian peninsula. Such are the fair and tall but broad-headed men of Lorraine, a cross between Celt and Teuton. Such are the Lowland Scotch, on the borderland between Gael and Saxon. Such well-tempered breeds have been yielded by Normandy and Tuscany and Swabia. We know little of the physical anthropology of the ancient Greek, but it is certain that one of his most characteristic types

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was the tall, fair man we know in the north; and the geographical and geological characteristics of Greece present in perfection the conditions which enable varying races to settle and develop in the closest proximity to one another.
Great Britain and Ireland were placed, by a happy chance, broadside on to the invasion of the fair race. The elongated islands thus presented the maximum of opportunity for intercourse between the two races. Even at the present time the process of fusion is still going on. The comparatively fair race extends along the east coasts of both islands, and the comparatively dark race along the west coasts. The islands form, therefore, a well-arranged pair of compact electric batteries for explosive fusion of the two elements. Both races are necessary for the production of imaginative genius, at all events, for it is a mistake to suppose that high imaginative genius is a characteristic of the unmixed dark races. In Dr. Beddoe's map of the British Isles, showing what he terms the index of nigrescence, one solitary islet of the dark race only may be seen in England, east of the Welsh border, and apparently at one time joined to it. This islet is in Warwickshire; that is, in the county of Shakespeare. Milton's family belonged to a neighbouring county, and Milton himself, we know, had Welsh blood in his veins. Out of the play of these two races has come all that is finest in English imaginative genius.
It need scarcely be said that this cross-breeding

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Is not the only factor in the causation of genius.
If that were so, genius would be much more com-
mon than it is, while it would be the rule, instead
of a rare exception, to find it shared by brothers
and sisters. There are other influences that tend
to produce genius, and various conditions that
promote its development. I have here simply
tried to indicate one of the factors in the determin-
ation of imaginative genius.



I am uncertain of the exact date of this OPEN LETTER, though I believe it was 1896. It presents my impressions while completing the preparatory work for A STUDY OF BRITISH GENIUS, and I sent it to the editor of the NEW REVIEW, who returned it. Then I put it aside, and it has only been printed, many years later, as an appendix to Dr. Isaac Goldberg's book, HAVELOCK ELLIS, though it is now also issued by Mr. Joseph Ishill at his Oriole Press, Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, U.S.A.
DURING recent years I have spent many silent
hours in your company. These hours have
passed more or less pleasantly. It is because
I can only look back upon them with mingled
satisfaction that I venture to address you now.

Let me explain, in the first place, that I sought your society as a student of that rare and marvellous human variation which we vaguely call "genius"; I desire to collect, so far as this may be possible, the material which will enable me to state some fairly definite conclusions concerning the complex nature and causes of genius. You will observe that I may thus be described as your

An Open Letter to Biographers
ideal reader. I come to you, not to pass away my idle moments, nor because I look up to this religious leader or follow that politician or am the devotee of any musician or painter or poet; I come to you with the challenge to produce your finest revelation concerning a certain unique personality in whatsoever manner that personality may have been manifested. For you all profess that you are striving to set forth such unique personalities, and I have sought from you in vain the greatest revelation of all, "The Life of an Average Man." You undertake to tell me of these unique lives, and with my head full of questions I take up my pencil to note down or underline your answers.--I have often flung away that idle, superfluous pencil.
This is why I venture to approach you collectively now. I have long listened to you in respectful silence. The years have rendered my respect somewhat critical, and I trust you will pardon the remarks with which I now break my silence.
You do not, I have said, tell me a fair portion of the things I desire to know. That fact I shall try to drive home later. I wish first to point out that you do tell me a great many things that I have no desire to know. You will tell me the lives of the men your hero knew; you will tell me his common-place remarks concerning the common-place people he met, and the towns he sojourned in; you are seldom tired of telling me in fullest detail of the honours that were showered

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on his declining years. But all this is not biography. And there is a more subtle error of commission into which you frequently fall headlong. You assume the function of the historian. Now a biographer is not a historian. It is quite true that men make history. But we cannot study the individual man in the same way as we study the product of many men's activity. The method which is best fitted for investigating the Reformation is not best fitted for studying Luther's portrait; the adequate biographer of Laud will scarcely be the adequate historian of the English Revolution. The better equipped a writer may be for the one task, the more badly equipped he will be for the other. The whole tone and touch must be different, and much practice in the one medium will no more give skill in the other than practice on the organ will make a man an accomplished pianist. But it is by practice on the organ of history that the most conspicuous among you have usually come to the piano of biography. And you often forget that you are not at the organ still. Some of you are now engaged on the Dictionary of National Biography. It is a useful and fascinating task; when complete there will be no such delightful work of its size in the language. But, in any volume of it, I can turn from "biography" to "biography" which contains not one line of genuine biography to the page; instead you have given us slices of mis-placed history. Clearly you have seldom asked yourselves: WHAT IS

An Open Letter to Biographers
BIOGRAPHY? You have simply assumed that it is the part a man plays in the history of civilisation. But that is to stultify both biography and history. In history we can never see truly from the standpoint of a single actor, and biography is thus made mere bad history. Undoubtedly any great man bears with him the mat eriaux pour servir in the making of the history of civilisation--whether in his deeds or his discoveries or his art-products--but the cataloguing of these is something beside the purpose of biography, just as the description of the face of the earth is beside the astronomer's purpose, however intimately the earth may hang to the sun. True, it is not impossible to trace the life and soul of an artist in his work. But this is only done by a special keen precision of touch such as Leynardi has expended on the dissection of the Divina Commedia, and not by the methods of the commentator who tells me all about every person or place Dante has mentioned for no better reason than because Dante has mentioned it. To write history, whether of a nation or of civilisation, is to write a complex whole in which the products of many men's activities have fermented together to yield something which is as far from the minds and lives of the men who made it as Christianity is from the mind and life of Jesus. To describe the products of a single man's activity, whenever it is worth doing at all, is to write prolegomena to history. To describe the birth and growth of a great man as he was in his real nature, physical
G 89

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and psychical--as a grape-cluster on the tree of life and not as a drop of alcohol in the vat of civilisation--that is biography.
I have it against you, then, that you who are charged with this high task are perpetually seeking to merge it in a lower or at all events a different task. But I would content myself if, after all, you really enabled me to gain a picture of the man. I would gird up my loins, fling to right and to left the extraneous matter that you pile up around me and make straight for the vital facts. But they are not there! Many and many a voluminous so-called "biography" I can compress into a couple of pages, and likely enough even these pages will reveal less than the vivid laconic portraits that Carlyle set down as by lightning flash of the men he but passingly met. Thus the authorised and only life of Young, not published until many years after his death, so far as really salient and pregnant facts are concerned can be compressed into six lines; the one supremely illuminative fact in it is the reproduction of his portrait. Now here is one of the most brilliant and versatile heroes of science that this country ever produced, a man who ranks with Harvey and Newton and Darwin, and the best that you can do is to lose to us for ever the chance of knowing the manner of man that he was in body and spirit: there remains only the image of the beautiful childlike face, with the sweet mouth and the large eager eyes, as Lawrence painted it. In every man

An Open Letter to Biographers
of genius a new strange force is brought into the world. The biographer is the biologist of this new life. I come to you to learn the origins of this tremendous energy, the forces that gave it impetus and that drove it into one channel rather than into another. I will gladly recognise that nowadays you generally tell me of the hero's ancestors; formerly you told me nothing of the mothers of great men, seldom even the name, and that is one of the most hopeless lacunae in the right understanding of genius. How gladly would I know more definitely the race and nature of the mother of that saint who for so many centuries won the love of Englishmen and whose shrine is furrowed deep by the knees of Chaucer's pilgrims! And yet while race and family are certainly an enormous factor in the making of every man, I would wish to point out to you that they are not omnipotent --for then the hero's brothers and sisters would always be heroes too--so that you need not trouble yourselves or us with the trivial details of the lives of these ancestors. But it would be well if you could tell us something of the stars that shone in the making of the individual life. We desire to know the influences, physical and moral, which surrounded the period of his conception, the welfare of his pre-natal life, whether he was born naturally and in due season. All the facts were once known in the area of the hero's family circle; some at least among you could have told them to us and so have made many things plain which

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now remain obscure. Rarely indeed have you done so, rarely even have you recognised that such questions are a part of knowledge. Yet the fate of all of us is in large measure sealed at the moment we leave the womb. Next in importance comes the curve of life that has its summit at puberty and ends with the completion of adolescence; whatever else there is to make is made then. The machine has been created; during these years it is wound up to perform its work in the world. What follows after counts for something but always for less. You cannot tell us too much real biography--the description of life--concerning these youthful years. Even the detailed account of the games and amusements devised by the young hero, such as Nietzsche's sister and biographer has written down for us, are welcome when obtainable; for the after-life of the man is often little more than the same games played more tragically on a larger field. After the age of twenty your task becomes easier and more obvious; after thirty, if so far you have fulfilled that task, what is there further left to tell? The rest is but the liberation of a mighty spring, the slow running down of energy. The man recedes to give place to his deeds, whether such deeds be the assault of great fortresses or the escalade of mighty sentences. There is the same heroic effort and achievement, whether on the walls of Jerusalem when Godfrey scaled them or on Flaubert's sofa at Rouen.
But, as I have already tried to point out, mere

An Open Letter to Biographers
chatter about the deeds is not what we come for to you the biographers. If the deeds are real they will speak for themselves in history or verse or other shape that men will not let die. When I want to see Velasquez's pictures I go not to you but to Madrid. But if you could only tell me how he came to paint them! When you are dealing with the adult hero in the midst of his work the one great service you can do, and that which is your most proper function, is to tell us, not about this work, but about the conditions under which it was achieved. If you have so far done your task we know the nature of the force; now we need to know by what channels it was manifested. I have it against you here that--save incidentally, partially, often hypocritically--you seldom attempt this part of your task. You find it so much easier to ramble on about the work and its reception than to describe the man's method of doing it, and what hindered or helped him in the doing. Often enough you like to represent him as doing it in a coat of mail impervious to the shafts of human weaknesses. You are well content when you have taken some real man--let us say, old Abraham Lincoln, a real man if ever there was one--and in the course of a ponderous authorised biography bleached and starched and ironed him into a tailor's dummy. You seem to me like the proverbial valet for whom his master is no hero. The hero on the battlefield may be a coward to his dentist; the man who has faced a revolution of socialistic thought may be

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too timid to walk down Lisson Grove.1 These things do not attenuate heroism; they are part of it. You cannot have force in two places at the same time; and you must know a man's weakness before you truly know his strength. It is often in the "weaknesses "--as the valet-moralist counts weakness--that the source of the hero's strength lies, the weakness which, as Hinton used to put it, was the path of least resistance through which the aboriginal energy of Nature passed into the man. The recital of the weaknesses in detail you can spare if you see good reason--and there is good reason why a biography should not be a chronique scandaleuse--but if you refuse to note them you are false to any intelligible conception of a biographer's function, and you have produced a lie which is as immoral as every untrue picture of life necessarily is. Michael Angelo's Platonic affection for men went to the chiselling of his sculpture, Victor Hugo's hollow domestic life was not unconnected with his ideals of celestial purity, literature is full of the unavowed confessions of opium-eaters and wine-bibbers, and so all along. It corrupts the tree of life at the core to deny such associations, to point only to the leaves and flowers that men call "moral," to ignore the roots which--through your hypocrisy, it may well be--they call dirty and "immoral." Nothing shall induce you to admit that your Achilles had a vulnerable heel?--And yet, if you rightly consider the matter, without
1I had a real man in mind--a distinguished thinker.

An Open Letter to Biographers
that heel Achilles would have been no hero at all. I have referred once or twice to the "biographer's function." Sometimes I wonder how many of you have ever considered what a biographer's function is. With what equipment have you usually come to your task? Even the question I feel you may regard as an insult. Yet, consider. The novelist only attains skill in his work after failure, perhaps a long series of failures like Balzac or Zola, rarely indeed at a bound. The novelists whose force has developed in a night have perished in a night. In the matter of biographies we possess what we should possess in the matter of novels if few novelists produced more than the early bungles of their prentice hands. And yet a novelist has undertaken the incomparably easier task of recording the lives of the simple puppets of his own brain. Remember, again, that biography does not stand alone as a branch of research. Beside biography, the life of an individual, we have ethnography, the life of a community. To the making of a great ethnographer--an Adolf Bastian, let us say--there are needed preliminary training in biology and psychology, an immense knowledge of literature, laborious research during journeys among remote savage peoples, perpetual attention to petty details. But should a biographer willingly admit that the life of a community is better worth serious study than the life of its greatest man? Go to the British Museum or the Anthropological Institute and look at those admirable series of

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photographs in which Mr. Portman has reproduced every step in the processes of life among the Andamanese, for instance in the fashioning of a bow and arrow; or see, if you can, the delightful photographs in which Mr. Ini Thurn has caught the beautiful brown-skinned Indians of Guiana in every stage of their work and especially their play. Is not the fashioning of a lyric to pierce the hearts of men for ever as well worth study as the making of an arrow? The child of genius gathering shells on the shores of eternity as interesting as the games of savages? Yet few have thought it worth while to inquire how Burns achieved his songs or Newton his theories. It was enough to utter the blessed word "Inspiration!" and lean comfortably back. Not so have the physiologists solved the mystery of physical respiration.
Biography, then, is strictly analogous to ethnography, the one being the picture of the life of a race, the other the intimate picture of the life of a a man. Now both the one and the other are branches of applied psychology, a strict method of scientific research. There was a time not so long ago when psychology was not a strict method of research and when any arm-chair philosopher sat down to write the history of the general soul as light-heartedly as the biographer still sits down to write the history of the individual soul. So far as pure psychology at least is concerned, those days are past. With the establishment by Wundt some twenty years ago of the first psychological

An Open Letter to Biographers
laboratory, psychology for the first time became a science; and in Germany and the United States --the two countries to which we now look for light on this new science--the work of men like Munster-berg, Preyer, Stanley Hall, Jastrow, and Scripture has taught us how to obtain by exact methods a true insight into the processes of the average human mind. No man now ventures to call himself a psychologist unless he is familiar with the methods and results of these workers. A few psychologists in Italy and France have pushed such methods into the investigation of exceptional men, and like Ottolenghi have examined the visual field of certain complacent men of genius, or like Binet have traced out with remarkably interesting results the ways in which certain dramatists--Dumas, Goncourt, Sardou, Meilhac and especially De Curel--conceive and write their plays. But how often does any such attempt, on however imperfect material, to bring us near to the heart and brain of a great creative personality form part of what the biographer presumes to call "Life "? How many biographers so much as know that they are--may the real students forgive me!--psychologists, and that the rules of their art have in large part been laid down?
I am quite sure, my dear sirs, that you will instinctively feel that this is stuff and nonsense. You have your duty to the public who pay you handsomely for doing it speedily, for the public has an uneasy feeling that the great man's fame

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will turn sour if not consumed off-hand. And then you have your duty towards your hero's personal friends and relations who will only help you on condition that you produce a figure that is smooth, decorous, conventional, bien coiffe, above all, closely cut off below the bust, such a figure as we may gaze at without a blush in the hairdresser's window. And at bottom, you may admit at last, you distrust both yourself and your audience, and will not publicly dare to take any bull by the horns.
Well, there is no doubt truth in this; I must needs believe there is, since you so solemnly and constantly repeat it between the lines of your books. Yet, after all, there are a few men whose fame has not died in a night, and who remain alive after their friends and relations have turned to dust. It is in the case of such men that I question the wisdom of sacrificing the interests of the world to the interests of a fleeting generation. Is it not worth while to wait five years, or even fifty years, or for the matter of that five hundred years, and at the end to possess the everlastingly inspiring record of a master spirit? Is it not worth while to be accounted a fool for a century, like the man who wrote according to his means the best of biographies, and to become immortal at last? It is the man who is a valet at soul who shudders at the possibility of possessing Boswell's Life of Jesus, or Eckermann's Conversations with Homer or Froude's edition of Shakespeare's Reminiscences

An Open Letter to Biographers
and who creates an atmosphere which renders such achievements immensely difficult. At the same
time this atmosphere renders possible a kind of
hero so rare in the world, the Hero as Biographer.
That is the final point on which I bring this letter

to a conclusion. The writing of a biography is no facile task; it is the strenuous achievement of a lifetime, only to be accomplished in the face of endless obstacles and unspeakable prejudice. I beg you to consider it. Then the ideal reader of coming centuries will not sigh so wearily as I sigh when he hears that Mr. So-and-So is being engaged on a biography of our eminent poet, novelist, or philosopher, This, That, or The Other; that every endeavour will be made to bring out this biography while the sense of the loss we have sustained is still so strongly felt; and that it is confidently expected that the large first edition will be bought up before publication.--Not so was any great book born into the world.


After living during the greater part of seven years at Carbis Bay in Cornwall--a county which I had previously never visited--I resolved to set down my impressions of the people among whom I had settled. The result was the following essay, published in the NEW CENTURY REVIEW for April and May, 1897.
THE river Tarnar divides from the rest of Great Britain an ancient land, small in extent but strong in its individuality. The first impression which Cornwall makes on the traveller who enters it by rail is that of a semi-French country; he passes stations with names of totally foreign complexion, St. Germans, Menheniot, Doublebois; and when he reaches his destination the names of the streets confirm this suggestion--thus, Street-an-Pol indicates a French rather than an English method of denomination. The language the people speak also scarcely sounds English to the stranger. I know a lady who immediately after arriving in Cornwall was addressed by a Cornishwoman in words that were unintelligible, but in tones that sounded so French that before realising where she was she spoke in French, The

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inflection of the Cornish voice is very characteristic; it rises in a musical wave to a climax reached about the antepenultimate syllable. To the dweller in Cornwall who returns after an absence amid the level harshness of English voices, this soft inflection breaks as gratefully as the ripple of the Cornish summer sea on the rocks. In certain details the Cornish pronunciation is nearer to the French than the English; in Cornwall they avoid the English u (ew) sound, and they like to transform the English e; thus my own name, pronounced "Hellis" by the genteel Cornish person anxious to ape "up-along" folk, is "Alis" to the true old-school Cornishman, as it is to the Frenchman. In the general physical and mental characteristics of the race, as will be seen later on, there is much to remind the dweller in Cornwall that he is not very far from France.
There is good reason for the presence of this pervading impression. The Cornish, with the Welsh on one side of them and the Bretons on the other, constitute altogether a compact group of peoples, intimately related to each other, distantly related to the Irish and the Highlanders outside the group. On the whole, as we should expect, the Cornish seem more closely related to the Bretons than are the Welsh.
"By Tre, Ros, Pol, Lan, Ker and Pen,
You may know most Cornishmen,"

the saying runs. The evidence of language is not altogether conclusive, but we may find all these

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prefixes among the people and places of Brittany, where, indeed, we even find a region called Cor-nouaille. In Wales the names have deviated from the primitive shape to a much greater extent. The most marked resemblance in names between the Cornish and the Welsh is the prevalence among both alike of Richardses and Williamses and Thomases, and so on. The very numerous Cornish saints indicate the relationships of the people; the saints of the Lizard district belong to Brittany, those of North Cornwall to Wales, while West Cornwall was converted by the Irish, with whom the Cornish have a distinct, though more remote, affinity. In many details of custom, also, the Cornish who preserve ancient ways recall their various Keltic neighbours. Again, the Cornish-man is distinguished from the English by the spade which he uses everywhere, and for all purposes, and cannot be persuaded to abandon. The common Anglo-Saxon spade is well known; it is a short, powerful implement with a large oblong blade, and a cross-piece at the end of the handle, not an elegant instrument, but well adapted to obtain a maximum output of energy from arms and back and legs. The Cornish spade--also found in Wales and Ireland--is often as long as its owner, with a slender, slightly curved handle and a small heart-shaped blade; it is a graceful instrument, adapted to the shallow soil of Cornwall, adapted also to the lithe, slow, free movements of Cornish-men, who possess a characteristic which has been

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lovingly described by a child of the land as a "divine laziness." Such are a few of many traits which bring the Cornish much nearer to the Welsh and the Bretons, even to the Irish, than to the Anglo-Saxon English.
For the sake of convenience I have called the Cornish Kelts. There is no doubt whatever that the language was purely Keltic, but the modern ethnologist is inclined to demur when the race is called Keltic. He points out that there were people in Cornwall before the so-called Kelts came, and that there is no reason to suppose they were annihilated by the Kelts, while it is very certain there have been immigrations of other races since. There is no doubt about this; it is indeed because the Cornish are a race well compacted of various elements that they have been able to show such vigour and versatility in spite of the small home they occupy in the world. But while it cannot be said that the Cornish are pure Kelts, it must be remembered that the Kelts form a considerable element in the race, leaving more distinct traces here than in any other part of England. There is, therefore, little impropriety in continuing to speak of the Cornish as Kelts, provided we duly understand the limited sense in which the word must here be used.
The dweller in Cornwall comes in time to perceive the constant recurrence of various types of man. Of these, two at least are well marked, very common, and probably of great antiquity and

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significance. The man of the first type is slender, lithe, graceful, usually rather short; the face is smooth and delicately outlined, without bony prominences, the eyebrows finely pencilled. The character is on the whole charming, volatile, vivacious, but not always reliable, and while quickwitted, rarely capable of notable achievement or strenuous endeavour. It is a distinctly feminine type. The other type is large and solid, often with much crispy hair on the face and shaggy eyebrows. The arches over the eyes are well marked and the jaws massive; the bones generally are developed in these persons, though they would scarcely be described as raw-boned; in its extreme form a face of this type has a rugged prognathous character which seems to belong to a lower race. The women are solid and vigorous in appearance, with fully-developed breasts and hips, in marked contrast with the first type, but resembling the women met with in Central and Western France. Indeed, the people of this type generally recall a certain French type, grave, self-possessed, deliberate in movement, capable and reliable in character.
I mention these two types because they seem to me to represent the two oldest races of Cornwall, or, indeed, of England. The first corresponds to the British Neolithic man--as described by Garson and other cautious investigators of recent date--who held sway in England before the so-called Kelts arrived, and who probably belonged to the

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so-called Iberian race; in pictures of Spanish women of the best period, indeed, and in some parts of modern Spain we may still see the same type. The second corresponds to the more powerful, and also, as his remains show, more cultured and aesthetic Kelt, who came from France and Belgium, driving the Neolithic man into the fortified hill-dwellings which abound in West Cornwall as well as in some other parts of Southern England. Here the Neolithic people may have dwelt until they adopted the language and higher civilisation of the sturdier Kelts, or perhaps until they were reconciled in the face of common foes. When craniologists assert that Cornish heads sometimes show French affinities, sometimes Spanish, we must put this fact down, not, as is sometimes done, to recent accidental crossing, but to the survival of two aboriginal elements in the population. When these types of individual are well combined, the results are often very attractive. We then meet with what is practically a third type: large, dignified, handsome people, distinguished from the Anglo-Saxon not only by their prominent noses and well-formed chins, but also by their unaffected grace and refinement of manner. In many a little out-of-the-world Cornish farm I have met the men of this type, and admired the distinction of their appearance and bearing, their natural, instinctive courtesy, their kindly hospitality. It was surely of such men that Queen Elizabeth thought when she asserted that all Cornishmen are courtiers.
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I do not wish to insist too strongly on these types
which blend into one another, and may even be
found in the same family. The Anglo-Saxon
stranger, who has yet had no time to distinguish
them, and who comes, let us say, from a typically
English county like Lancashire, still finds much
that is unfamiliar in the people he meets. They
strike him as rather a dark race, lithe in movement,
after the manner of sailors and fishermen, and
their hands and feet are small. Their hair has a
tendency to curl, and their complexions, even
those of the men, are often incomparable. This
last character is due to the extremely moist
climate of Cornwall, swept on both sides by the
sea-laden winds of the Atlantic. In the same way
the traveller southwards through Provencal France,
when at length he reaches the Mediterranean, is
impressed by the fresh, fair cheeks of the Mar-
seillaises; and I have never anywhere in the
world so fully realised the loveliness of a fair
complexion as in the faces of Englishwomen
newly arrived among the dry, harsh skins one
sees in rainless Australia. More than by this,
however, the stranger accustomed to the heavy,
awkward ways of the Anglo-Saxon clodhopper
will be struck by the bright, independent intelli-
gence and the facility of speech which he finds
here. The work, as one finds later, may be ill
done, it will certainly be done with deliberation,
but the worker is quick-witted, and, rightly or
wrongly, he retains a certain superiority over his


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work. No disguise can cover the rusticity of the English rustic; on Cornish roads one may often meet a carman whose clear-cut face, bushy moustache, and general bearing might easily add distinction to Pall Mall.
A very marked trait of the Cornish is their independence. Far more innately than the inhabitants of any other part of England, these people are democrats. They may not hold more advanced political views, but they have a more instinctive dignity and self-respect, a more natural and matter-of-course sense of equality. It may be seen in little matters; the use of the obsequious "Sir" (a matter of inflection, be it noted, for we have the contemptuous "Sir" of Dr. Johnson, the American's non-committal "Sir," the Frenchman's purely courteous "Monsieur ") as well as the touching of caps, so widespread in England generally, are not prevalent in Cornwall. The Cornish-man, if possible, always addresses you by your name. Democracy in the Anglo-Saxon is often a mere blustering revolt against servility. He asserts his equality with the mere snobbish assertiveness of the man who has no sense of equality in his soul. The Cornishman's sense of equality is so deep-rooted that nothing can perturb his friendly courtesy to social superiors, and when the shocked middle-class Anglo-Saxon stiffly draws back, the Cornishman puts it down to the eccentric pride of "up-along" folk. It is noteworthy that the conception of democracy as

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a spiritual grace, not to be found by much seeking, has throughout inspired a distinguished Cornish-man of to-day, Edward Carpenter, in writing his Towards Democracy. This democratic instinct is a very ancient trait in the Cornish character. The American who visits England is impressed by the persistence of the feudal spirit. That spirit, undoubtedly, with the servile dependence and swaggering revolt from dependence which it engenders, is the great enemy of democracy. But feudalism with difficulty penetrated into Cornwall, never took root there, and faded away at an early period. The temper of the race, while not opposed to voluntary communistic co-operation, as we may still see among the fishermen, is distinctly averse to the subordination and unquestioning obedience of patriarchal feudalism.
The special characters of the race are often vividly shown in its women. I am not aware that they have ever played a large part in the world, whether in life or art. But they are memorable enough for their own qualities. Many years ago, as a student in a large London hospital, I had under my care a young girl who came from labour of the lowest and least skilled order. Yet there was an instinctive grace and charm in all her ways and speech which distinguished her utterly from the rough women of her class. I was puzzled then over that delightful anomaly. In after years, recalling her name and her appearance, I knew that she was Cornish, and I am puzzled no longer.

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I have since seen the same ways, the same soft, winning speech equally unimpaired by hard work and rude living. The Cornish woman possesses an adroitness and self-possession, a modulated readiness of speech, far removed from the awkward heartiness of the Anglo-Saxon woman, the emotional inexpressiveness of the Lancashire lass whose eyes wander around as she seeks for words,
perhaps completing her unfinished sentence by a snap of the fingers. The Cornish woman--at all
events while she is young and not submerged by the drudgery of life--exhibits a certain delightful volatility and effervescence. In this respect she has some affinity with the bewitching and distracting heroines of Thomas Hardy's novels--for instance, the little schoolmistress of Under the Greenwood Tree----doubtless because the Wessex folk of the same south coast are akin to the Cornish. The Cornish girl is inconsistent without hypocrisy; she is not ashamed of work, but she is very fond of jaunts, and on such occasions she dresses herself, it would perhaps be rash to say with more zeal than the Anglo-Saxon maiden, but usually with more success. She is an assiduous chapel-goer, equally assiduous in flirtation when chapel is over. The pretty Sunday-school teacher and leader of the local Band of Hope cheerfully confesses as she drinks off the glass of claret you offer her that she is but a poor teetotaler. The Cornish woman will sometimes have a baby before she is legally married; it is only an old custom of

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the country, though less deeply rooted than the corresponding custom in Wales. After she has married, her man perhaps leaves her to go to America or the Cape, and disappears; in a few years she may marry again. One sometimes wonders how far the volatile and mercurial element in the Cornish woman, the delightful inconsistency of the race generally, may not be associated with the climate of this land of sunshine and shower, with its perpetual rainbows hovering over the waters, and its heady Atlantic winds from the west. These mighty winds that rise up at night to howl, and whistle, and roar, have much to answer for in the physical conformation of the land; they have swept the soil until the rocks are bare, they have made the life of the woods impossible for all but the smallest and hardiest trees, they have piled up the sea-sand into dunes that have buried churches. The wind in Cornwall is a more powerful factor in life than elsewhere. Sudden changes in the wind here strangely stimulate and exhaust the nervous system, both in the natives and in strangers. The people themselves, realising this, regard the wind as a cause of disease; the wind has got into his head (they say), or his throat, or his belly, as the case may be.
Vivacious and intelligent as the Cornish people are, they seem to be, for the most part, inapt for strenuous intellectual effort. Cornwall has no famous thinkers to set against the Abelard, the Descartes, and many another only less famous,

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produced by an allied soil and allied race in
Brittany. Sir Humphry Davy was scarcely a
philosopher, but his name is the chief that comes
into the mind. With his impressive personality,
his eloquence, his brilliant and many-sided ver-
satility, Davy is typical of the Cornish spirit at its
finest, just as his contemporary, Dalton--rough,
simple, unaffected, untiringly patient and plodding
--represents the northern Anglo-Saxon. One other
name Cornwall has to show in the highest sphere of
science: Adams, the astronomer and mathemati-
cian, who is for ever associated with the stupendous
feat of discovering Neptune. In general literature,
on the other hand, especially what used to be called
belles lettres., the Cornish show very well. George
Borrow was only half a Cornishman, but the whole
temper of the man and his work--the brave and
cheerful adventurousness, the happy insight into
varied and morbid moods, even the unconscious
incongruity of the religious element--are very
Cornish indeed. Trelawney was a true Cornish-
man in every sense, and his Adventures constitute
the ideal history of the typical Cornishman.
"Peter Pindar," again, represents the Cornish
adventurer in literature under his least amiable
aspects, while Praed shows him under pleasanter
aspects. Among greater men Keats is sometimes
mentioned in connection with Cornwall; it is not,
indeed, definitely known whether the father of
Keats came from Cornwall or Devonshire, but if
not of Cornish he was evidently of allied race. The


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genius of the Bronte family is always associated with the eccentric Irish father; it must be added that the genius was not made manifest until the Irish was blended with Cornish stock. In our own day it seems to me that the characteristics of the Cornish spirit are well exemplified in a young poet and critic who is of purely Cornish race, Mr. Arthur Symons. Mention must also be made of the group of novelists--such as Mr. Quiller-Couch, Mr. Lowry, and Mr. Pearce--who have devoted themselves with delicate artistic fidelity to the delineation of their land and its people.
The Cornishman possesses various artistic aptitudes, but on the whole they are not of the plastic order. A certain amount of taste in trivial detail, a love of colour, may be noted, but no great painters come from Cornwall as from East Anglia and other more Scandinavian parts of Great Britain. Reynolds, indeed, belonged to Plymouth, just over the border, but Opie, the portrait painter, and Bone, the miniaturist, seem to be the only Cornish artists to be found until recent times. Brittany is similarly bare of great painters. Nor is there much to say for Cornish architecture. Now and again one meets with an old house that has its charm of fitness, but on the whole they are far less common than the old farmhouses of the North with their grave simplicity and harmony; nor is there anything to compare with the cheerful

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felicity which the art of domestic architecture reached in West Surrey and Hampshire. The cause of this lack lies doubtless in material. In the absence of stone, wood, and tiles, the Cornish have had to wrestle with the problems offered by so rebellious a substance as granite. There are not even many notable churches in this land of saints; Launceston church-tower is an exception. St. Buryan's, in its austere simplicity, impresses the traveller as he circles around it in his progress through the Land's End district. The noblest and most satisfying fragment of ecclesiastical architecture in Cornwall is, without doubt, the tower of Probus church, near Truro. The church itself is insignificant, but the tower, built in Elizabethan days though reminiscent of an earlier period of art, is admirable at every point. One vainly seeks to know how so insignificant a village acquired so stately a possession. I have many times spent weeks beneath its shadow, and from afar or near I have never failed to thrill with pleasure as I caught sight of its large and gracious proportions, its fitness of detail, the soft grey tones of its delicately diapered walls.
An aptitude for music and singing is the most characteristic artistic faculty of the Cornish, and there is even some reason for supposing that the greatest of English composers, Purcell, belonged to Cornwall. We must certainly connect this aptitude with the beautifully modulated speech of the people, the unconscious tendency to soften and

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broaden ordinary English, and their gift of
eloquence; for like the Welsh and the Irish--
though to a less extent than these latter--the
Cornish are speakers and preachers. Certain parts
of the county, like Zennor, have an ancient
reputation for beauty of voice; the fame of
Incledon lives to our own time, and various noted
singers of to-day are of Cornish race. This musical
endowment is radical in the race. Up to the
seventeenth century miracle-plays remained very
popular in Cornwall, as various open amphi-
theatres on the hillsides remain to testify. The
Cornish Mysteries are held to differ from those of
other parts chiefly by their superiority in form, in
accuracy of rhythm and rhyme, and in adaptability
for lyrical expression; so strong, indeed, is the
musical element that they are usually, it has been
said, the libretti of religious operas, while instead
of closing with a Te Deum, as is customary in
English and French Mysteries, they end by direct-
ing the minstrels to "pipe diligently that we may
go to dance." Musical antiquaries hold that the
modern carol--which is really a choral song some-
what less serious than a hymn, and accompanied
by a dance--is a relic of the choruses sung between
the acts of miracle-plays. In most English towns
the carol has degenerated into some vulgar modern
jingle, some "'Ark! the 'erald angels sing," hastily
yelled by small ragamuffins anxious for a copper.
In Cornwall it remains a more serious matter. The
young men of the village, for some time before


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Christinas, practise together the traditional part-songs, which are very quaint and delightful to listen to. When Christmas Eve conies they go round singing from house to house, and the poorest Cornish householder gladly pays his shilling--a considerable sum here--in return for this little concert outside his door.
The Cornish love of music, and also of dancing, appears in various old rites and customs that have not yet died out. Furry day, which is celebrated at Helston, in the Lizard district, during the first week of May, is perhaps the most remarkable of these festivals. On this day the inhabitants of the town, including the Mayor and "best families," dance along the open streets and in and out of a large number of the houses, all knocking at the door as they dance in. The dance is a sort of polka, and the accompanying town-band plays a very lively traditional air, which, it is said, may also be found in Brittany and Wales. For two hours this dance continues without intermission beneath the warm sun which is not unknown to a Cornish May. Watching the perspiring actors in this quaint survival from the antique world, I can well believe the statement I overheard one young lady among them make, that it was the hardest day's work she had ever done. It would, however, be a mistake to suppose that this now meaningless celebration is kept up from any sense of duty. It is the buoyant nervous excitability of the race which makes the people of Helston cling to a

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festival which is unparalleled in any English town.
The volatility of the Cornish, however exuberantly effervescent, rarely passes into the rowdyism and horseplay which are still so painfully common among the true-born English. Even the Cornish Mysteries, it appears, are singularly free from the coarse buffoonery which usually characterised those clerical productions. When Cornish lads to-day ramble abroad you will not find them engaged in creating the maximum of noisy mischief. And when you lie in your bed in the West End of London, and are awakened in the early hours of Sunday morning by ugly voices howling discordantly the noisiest music-hall song to the cackling accompaniment of reckless laughter, you may be fairly sure that these people were not born in Cornwall. This is one of the characters which bring the Cornish near to the French; it may merely indicate difference in nervous texture, but it adds to the amenity of life.
The genius of the race--its volatility and its power of speech--is well-fitted for the actor's profession. The tendency may be seen among village lads, who will sometimes organise a nigger-minstrel company, in elaborate costume, to go from house to house performing variety entertainment. Foote, a famous actor of old time, once called "the English Aristophanes," belonged to Cornwall, and the greatest English actor of our own day, Sir Henry Irving, though not actually born in Cornwall, belongs to the county, both by

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race (on the maternal side) and by the fact that he
spent his early youth there.

It would be a mistake to imagine that the favourite avocations and amusements of the Cornish are all effeminate. No one who is acquainted with Cornish wrestling will rush to that conclusion. Nowadays, indeed, wrestling in Cornwall is dying out, and I have not often had an opportunity of witnessing it, but it is by no means extinct. I know a village, far removed from railway stations and the currents of modern life, where it may be well studied. Behind the chief inn in the village is a large field. Here, on a certain day every year, several hundred people assemble and seat themselves on chairs and benches, forming a large ring left free for the wrestlers, who strive the whole day long in round after round to throw one another according to the rules of the art. They are practically naked above the waist, for the strong loose canvas jacket is easily lifted over the shoulders. It is a graceful and vigorous performance, not without a certain solemnity befitting a survival from the early world. No one is hurt, however decisive the falls, for there is nothing of the reckless barbarity of football, so dear to the hearts of the northern English countrymen. There are no women present, though a few may be seen flitting in the background and gazing on furtively. Beer is passed round from time to time to the onlookers, who sedately discuss the performance with the air

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of connoisseurs, applaud the victors, and quietly
disperse in the evening.

The stranger in Cornwall is quickly impressed by something wild and primitive in the land and the people. To a large extent this is a correct impression. The general contours of the country --huge fantastic rocks lashed by angry winter seas, gorse-covered moorlands with but rare luxuriant valleys--are savage and uncivilised. The prehistoric remains--the frequent monoliths, the "quoits" as cromlechs are here called, the mysterious circles of stones--confirm the impression and recall the grander relics of primitive rite and sepulture in Brittany, while the quaint wayside crosses scattered so profusely along western Cornish roads recall the simple piety of early days. The people themselves also often retain a certain element of savagery, as apt when irritated to break out in bursts of violent anger as their shallow soil to reveal the hard rock underneath, or their sudden gales to lash the sea into white fury. They have a primitive instinct for religion, though perhaps to a less extent than the Welsh or the Bretons; they were ardent Catholics in days of old, they never took kindly to a State Church as invented by Henry VIII, but when Wesley came among them and made a spiritual faith once more possible they became ardent Methodists. They have also been devoted wreckers, fervent smugglers. Even now it is possible to point to men who in their early days, it is said, lured vessels to

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destruction on the rocks. They carried their smuggling audacity so far as in one case at least to use a church for storing the smuggled spirits, carefully removing them on Saturday nights in preparation for the religious rites of the Sunday. Doubtless these things have died out, and nowadays the Cornish display their fervour in rescuing life at such times as the fierce winter gales turn the dangerous coasts around the Lizard and Land's End into seething cauldrons of death, in which the lifeboat cannot live and the rocket cannot pierce the wind to bring rescue to the sailors who drop one by one from the rigging to their death, within a few yards of land. The man who would once have been a wrecker is perhaps the man who now spends days and nights in searching for dead bodies along the coasts. To live on the Cornish coast breeds a certain familiarity with death, and also that terror of the devouring sea which is deeply rooted in the people, and a little surprising to the careless summer pleasure-seekers who bathe all day long in these clear sparkling waters and cool mysterious caves. But the natives see it differently, and in many districts there are few women who have not lost one of their men--a son, a father, a husband, sometimes drowned beneath their eyes. The life of the people, and perhaps their racial instincts, are primitive also in their attachment to superstitions. All sorts of pagan survivals may be found in Cornwall: holy wells are numerous; every district has its population of

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ghosts, and many are the natives who have seen or heard them. Witchcraft was of old strongly rooted in Cornwall, especially in particular spots, such as St. Ives. It is not yet extinct, and the witch-doctor still mutters her spells for the benefit of those who seek her advice. I know of a respectable citizen of a Cornish town who found his orthodox doctor's remedies too slow, and went off to a famous witch-doctor who uttered her spells over him; he was perfectly satisfied with the results. This man made no secret of the course he had adopted, apparently regarding his preference for the powers of darkness over the powers of potions as justified by more speedy results. There must certainly be a far larger number of persons who resort to these same powers in secret. While the Cornish are truly primitive in the sense that they still retain traditions, habits, arid customs now unknown to the rest of England, it must be added that they have little of the profound conservatism of the Welsh, which has kept the old Keltic tongue alive and vigorous within a few hundred miles of London, just as they lack also the intense moral fervour of the Breton. In the Cornish rustic there is even a certain eagerness for novelty; you may see his whole body astir with delight at some new spectacle at which the Anglo-Saxon would only gape in wonderment. What seems to us the primitiveness of the Cornish is largely, it appears to me, an organic character of the race which civilisation can scarcely be expected

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to efface, a radical matter of temperament. The Anglo-Saxon character comports a certain exterior awkwardness, a more or less genial ruffianism, beneath which you find on cutting into it--though this may not be easy to effect--a reliable depth of juicy beefiness. When you scratch the gentle surface of the Cornish soul you may, perchance, strike on some unexpected resonant resistance, even with ugly sparks of fire, just as when you penetrate the shallow soil of Cornish land you strike on hard metalliferous strata. I do not wish to insinuate that either of these tempers is of higher quality. The one is not quite so smooth as it looks, the other not quite so rough. In the world of character it is not so easy, as it is in the world of zoology, to assert that the creature which carries its skeleton inside is more highly organised than that which carries it outside. But the ready responsiveness of the Cornish temperament, its unexpected recoils and resistances, its apparent contradictions, are fascinating, and constitute a character which appeals to us as primitive.
In a last analysis, perhaps the most distinctive and interesting element in the Cornish character is its adventurousness. Here the restless, nervous energy in the race, and the underlying sturdiness --Cornish gales and Cornish granite--are combined and displayed in splendid achievement. It is a mistake to imagine that the Anglo-Saxon race is adventurous in a conspicuous degree. The Englishman is an excellent colonist, no doubt,
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solid and tenacious, but not quick to "trek" on into the unknown until well convinced that his present state is intolerable. The Scotch, the Irish, and the Cornish have been the chief pioneers, leading forlorn hopes to 'outposts which the more stolid English have afterwards held and maintained. The names of great travellers, adventurers, and pioneers are enough to indicate that we English, in the narrow sense of the word, do not greatly predominate among them, and the same fact is clear to anyone who has ever lived in any outpost of English-speaking civilisation. The Cornish seaports--Fowey, Falmouth, St. Ives, Padstow--have sent out numberless sailors and adventurers in Elizabethan days and after. During the last half-century these have been joined by the men who are cast adrift through the decay of Cornish mining. Cornishmen are found to-day in all parts of the world--in America, Australia, and Africa. South Africa is especially the resort of the Cornish, and the Cornishman at home pronounces with far more familiarity the name of Johannesburg than that of London, a remote city, mentioned, perhaps, with some condescension, and not bulking so largely in the Cornishman's eyes as Plymouth, the great seaport of emigration, which lies almost within his own boundaries. The Cornish often settle abroad, but they return more frequently than do the Anglo-Saxon English, who, if less keen to go, are also less keen to return. In every part of Cornwall you find men who have

The Men of Cornwall
wandered through the world, and have come back, with or without a small competency, to end their days in their own land. The joy of adventure is dearer to the Cornish heart than the accumulation of wealth. It is this adventurousness which has given the Cornish the felicity of playing so large a part in the history of English civilisation. The Welsh have never reconciled themselves to conquest, the Irish have never even recognised their conquest, the Cornish have riot seldom put themselves at the head of their conquerors. There are many Cornish families, like the Killigrews and the Godolphins, who have attained distinguished preeminence in every department of practical affairs, statesmanship, diplomacy, divinity, law. Great soldiers and sailors Cornwall has produced in abundance. Sir Richard Grenville--whose exploits were celebrated by his like-minded kinsman, Sir Walter Raleigh, and in a later day by Tennyson --is one of the first among English heroes; the same exuberantly heroic family yielded Sir Bevill Grenville, "the Cornish Bayard." Sir John Eliot, the revolutionary patriot and orator, was also a Cornishman When times changed, Cornwall sent out missionary adventurers like Henry Martyn, and explorers like Richard Lander, while in still later days the daring of the Cornish has been chiefly shown in the creation of new ideals in literature and morals. The long list of Cornish worthies is little more than a series of pioneers into the physical and spiritual worlds.


Published in 1899 in the UNIVERSITY MAGAZINE AND FREE REVIEW, edited and published by Dr. de Villiers who had taken the FREE REVIEW over from the (now) Right Hon. J. M. Robertson, and in the previous year had published the first volume of my STUDIES IN THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SEX. De Villiers, the son of a German judge, was an extraordinary man who, it ultimately appeared, lived a life of mystification passing over into criminality, though by no means an ordinary criminal. Finally, to avoid arrest, he sought refuge in a concealed room of his house in Cambridge, and there committed suicide with the aid of poison he had long carried about in a ring he wore.
THERE is no form of literature so fascinating
and so instructive to the student of human
nature as autobiography. The confessions
left by Augustine, Bunyan, Cellini, Casanova,
Rousseau, can never lose either their interest or
their psychological value. Novels become un-
intelligible, histories need to be re-written, but
the intimate record of the soul's experiences is
always new.

La Possession de la Mere Jeanne des Anges, Superieure des Religieuses Ursulines de Loudun (known in the world as Mlle de Belcier) cannot be said to stand in the first rank of great autobiographies. Yet it is singularly interesting and

Soeur Jeanne des Anges
instructive. There is perhaps no other document in existence--not even the Life of Saint Theresa--which shows how large and tragic a part in human affairs may be played by hysteria. Since hysteria, in its myriad forms, is just as prevalent in the nineteenth as in the seventeenth century, and plays an equally prominent part in life, it may not be out of place to call the reader's attention to the existence of this autobiography, discovered a few years ago in the Communal Library at Tours, and admirably edited, under the superintendence of Charcot, by Drs. Legue and Gilles de la Tourette. Mile de Belcier was born in the Chateau of Cozes, in Saintonge, on February 2nd, 1602, being the daughter of a great seigneur, Messire Louis Belcier, Baron of Cozes. She was a puny child, ill-developed physically, of bizarre temper, and at the age of ten was sent to be educated at a convent where her aunt was prioress. But here her conduct was so unbearable, and her tastes so ill-regulated, that when she had reached the age of fifteen her aunt sent her home in despair. At home neither good advice nor severe punishment were spared on the rebellious daughter, and growing weary of both at last she resolved to take the veil. The lack of vocation appeared absolute, but no doubt the parents welcomed this caprice as a solution of their difficulties, and sent their daughter to the Ursulines, who had just established a house at Poitiers. Here the young novice showed somewhat excessive zeal. She was,

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for instance, attracted to diseased persons, and liked to dress the most repulsive wounds. During her noviciate she lost six of her brothers and sisters, one of them being killed by the English at Rhe, and her parents tried to induce her to return to their desolate home, but in vain, the final vows being pronounced in 1623.
At the same time, however, the religious community in which she lived began to perceive many defects in Jeanne de Belcier's character. She was fantastic, vain, dissembling. But all remonstrances remained without effect; they only served to make Soeur Jeanne think of leaving the convent, and as the convent was poor, and Soeur Jeanne was rich, the sisters endeavoured to reconcile themselves to her caprices. When it was proposed to establish a new Ursuline house at Loudun she succeeded in being nominated one of the eight founders. At Loudun, Sceur Jeanne surprised all her companions; she was submissive, even humble; wholly pre-occupied with the idea of being made superior of the convent. Before long she was successful, and at the age of twenty-five she found herself at the head of a convent of constantly growing importance. Having thus achieved the object of her ambition, she quickly fell into her old habits, threw off all restraint, and gave a free rein to her whims. Her pride and intolerance made the lives of the sisters unbearable, while she spent whole days in the convent parlour enjoying the scandal of the town. No one at

Soeur Jeanne des Anges
Loudun was so well informed as Soeur Jeanne. At that time a priest named Urbain Grandier--the history of whose tragic fate has been recorded in full detail--chiefly occupied the scandal-mongers of Loudun. Proud, handsome, sensual--and giving free rein to his sensuality--he was yet a man of marked intellectual ability, and gifted with persuasive eloquence. Such a man especially fascinates and subdues the imagination of women. Jeanne, with her passionate and unwholesome curiosity, could not fail to experience the magic charm of Grandier, and she resolved to find some opportunity of entering into relationship with him.
Jeanne herself was not without powers of seduction. She was small, indeed, and her shoulders were deformed--though she showed skill in disguising this deformity--but her face was beautiful, her eyes bright, and she was proud of her beauty. Moreover, the charm of her conversation was notable. She set herself to obtain Grandier as spiritual director of her convent. The reply was a direct refusal, and Jeanne had little difficulty in placing the responsibility for this reply with Madeline de Bron, Grandier's favourite mistress. Jeanne's next step was to obtain as spiritual director a priest who was violently hostile to Grandier. We may note that, notwithstanding her pre-occupation with Grandier's personality, Jeanne had never seen him.
A few months later she fell into a state of severe anaemia, and showed signs of nervous affection,

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aggravated by the reading of many mystical books. She was now subject to nocturnal hallucinations, and seemed to see Grandier approaching her, radiant with a fascinating beauty, overwhelming her with caresses and amorous proposals. She finally confided these visions of the night to her companions, being careful to add that she had courageously resisted the solicitations of the tempter. To overwhelm the tempter with more certain defeat, several of the nuns, with Jeanne at their head, prayed and fasted, and administered to themselves corporal discipline. The result was that in a few days several nuns experienced similar visions. Then the honest but superstitious spiritual director--whose hostility to Grandier has already been mentioned--began to suspect the influence of Satan, and to talk of demoniacal possession. All the enemies of Grandier were apprised of what was going on among the Ursuline nuns, and it began to be noised abroad that Grandier had bewitched them. Exorcism was attempted; wild terror ruled in the convent, and this nervous excitement brought on a violent convulsive attack. Hitherto Jeanne had shown little more than a marked congenital predisposition to hysteria. Now the seal of the demon was definitely set upon her. Great was the consternation of the community at so visible an eruption of Satan, and the nuns who witnessed the scene were one by one swept into the same whirlpool of erotic delirium and convulsion. The convulsions soon

Soeur Jeanne des Anges
ceased after the Archbishop of Bordeaux had wisely put a stop to the exorcisms, but now Jeanne suffered much from haemorrhages and anemia, which naturally aggravated her hallucinations. At night she and the other sisters might be seen, like bacchantes, possessed by erotic mania, rushing through the alleys of the convent garden, haunted by the image of Grandier whom they had never seen.
Then a relation of Jeanne's, Laubardemont, a man described as the genius of evil and a creature of Richelieu's, whose ear he possessed, arrived upon the scene. He witnessed the turbulent manifestations at the convent; he learnt that Grandier had opposed certain schemes of Richelieu which Laubardemont had been appointed to execute. In a few weeks, by Richelieu's orders, Grandier was in prison. The exorcisms were re-established, and, of course, the demoniacal manifestations were re-doubled, Jeanne standing out prominently by the obscenity of her language and conduct, when under the evil spirit's influence. It was in vain that Grandier proved his absolute innocence; the precise testimony of Satan himself, through the mouths of Jeanne and her companions, could not be gainsaid. At five o'clock on the morning of August 18th, 1634, the commission, presided over by Laubardemont, condemned the unhappy priest to be burnt alive on that same day. He was first conducted to the torture chamber where two monks, the Reverend Fathers

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Tranquille and Lactance, themselves hammered in the wedges to break the legs of the victim--who behaved throughout with admirable courage and resignation--and then accompanied him to the stake in the market-place, where they forbade the execution of the merciful rule of first strangling the victim, and themselves lighted the fire. It is a sad satisfaction, for the honour of humanity, to learn that these two reverend fathers, together with several magistrates, surgeons, and others concerned in this affair, died insane.
Jeanne's hysterical condition was, however, radically established, and the death of Grandier merely served to change its manifestations which she has herself fully recorded. At one stage it was again resolved to apply exorcism, and the choice of the exorciser brings another element, of almost ludicrous pathos, into the narrative. Surin, the Jesuit father selected, was about the same age as Soeur Jeanne, now thirty-two, and was himself also profoundly hysterical, suffering from continual severe headache, together with many of the same nervous symptoms which Jeanne displayed, including the temptations of the same demon of impurity, Isacaaron. Thus was Satan appointed to cast out Satan.
Father Surin left Jeanne no rest day nor night. He made her appear before him completely naked, and with the object of chastising Isacaaron, ordered her to flagellate herself. These orders Jeanne duly executed, feeling nothing of the

Soeur Jeanne des Anges
flagellation, and scarcely knowing what was said or done, except that a confused memory remained with her that she had undressed and dressed herself.
This Jesuit father was no ordinary victim of hysteria. He was a mystic whose literary «vorks --especially his Spiritual Guide to Perfection and his Triumph of Divine Love--have been devoutly reprinted even in the present century. The contact of two such persons, both of unusual ability, both wrought up to the highest pitch of nervous exaltation, could not fail to be without result: a period of miracles began.
Father Surin, however, won no credit for the inauguration of this new era. The only immediate result of his spiritual attentions was a distinct further injury both to his own health and Jeanne's, and he was speedily superseded by another Jesuit. Then it was that, apparently suffering from severe pleurisy, for which she was repeatedly bled, she seemed at the point of death. Extreme unction was administered, and while the bystanders were awaiting her last moments, the dying woman suddenly sat up, her face radiantly beautiful, and exclaimed that she was cured. She had had a vision in which St. Joseph appeared to her bearing a balm of exquisite odour. He would not himself apply it to her side "on account of his well-known modesty," but Jeanne's guardian-angel, having, we are told, no such scruples, rubbed the balm on to the affected part, producing immediate relief,

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In proof of this, five large and deliciously perfumed spots were found on Jeanne's shift. (It may not be out of place to mention that Jeanne was specially skilful in the manufacture of ointments, and spent considerable time in preparing them.) The shift was cut in half horizontally by the Ursulines a few days later, the lower and less sacred portion being thrown away, and the upper half, having first been suspended by a thread near the five odoriferous spots to keep that portion out of the water, carefully washed and preserved, to play a large part in Jeanne's subsequent career.
That career lasted for twenty-seven years longer, but gradually changed its character. Jeanne is now no longer the mere victim of Satan; she is something of a saint, and she travels triumphantly through France, bearing pity and healing with her. She exhibits the holy shift to the reverent eyes of the King and Cardinal Richelieu, and even the Queen (Anne of Austria) vainly implores from her the gift of one of those sacred grease-spots.1 Wherever she goes thousands come forth to meet her, and everywhere miracles are effected. Jeanne, in addition, now bore about on her body another
1 Soeur Jeanne gives a full account of the interview with the great cardinal. He was in bed suffering with hemorrhoids and also from a tumour in the arm. "On seeing the fragment of shift on which was the unction," she writes, "he was touched with respect and expressed great sentiments of piety, for before taking it in his hands, though he was ill, he uncovered his head, smeJled it and kissed it twice, saying: ' That smells perfectly good.' He made it touch a reliquary which he had at the head of the bed, and while he was holding the shift with respect and admiration, I narrated to him how I had been cured by the power of St. Joseph and the application of the unction." But no beneficial effect was produced either on the haemorrhoids or on the tumour,

Soeur Jeanne des Anges
proof of the miraculous interference of heaven. Father Surin, after two years' absence from Loudun, had returned, and had succeeded in expelling from Jeanne, Behemoth, one of the devils who possessed her. As a proof of his submission, Behemoth was commanded to write the names of Jesus, Mary, and others on Jeanne's hand. This suggestion, as sometimes happens in the hysterical, was successful, and for a long period these names were constantly renewed, to the admiration of the devout and the confusion of the sceptical.
All these events, and many others which are full of instruction, alike for the student of human nature, of history, and of the phenomena of hysteria, are recorded in detail by Jeanne herself, with a full sense of the importance of the manifestations in which she had played the chief part, but simply and sincerely, honestly attempting to distinguish what seemed to her to be her own share in events, and what was attributable to the influence of bad or good spirits. As time wore on, her hallucinations became changed in character; she dreamed of union with Christ. The carnal temptations still appeared from time to time, and she vainly sought to subdue them "by rolling on thorns and hot coals, without relief." She was re-elected prioress, and in later years her rule was very severe. She became paralysed and died on January 29th, 1665. A few months later, Father Surin, overwhelmed by physical infirmities,

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committed suicide. It was rumoured that Jeanne died in the odour of sanctity. The sisters deposited her head in a superb reliquary, and for more than a century this little head, that had been the seat of such intense nervous activity and had enacted so many tragedies and comedies in the world, received the veneration of the devout who travelled to Loudun. After that the Ursu-lines of Loudun fell upon days of misfortune and disrepute, and were finally suppressed by the Bishop of Poitiers, a few years before the Revolution. Then the relics, head and shift alike, disappeared, and the most careful researches of recent days have been fruitless to ascertain either their present resting-place or their fate. Even Jeanne's history has been forgotten, passionately as it once moved the emotions of men and moulded their fates, only to be reconstructed by the erudite from forgotten treatises and mouldy manuscripts. As reconstructed, it is a pathetic record, and a symbol of those unwholesome mists of the brain by which, now as much as ever, men seek to shut out themselves and others from the eternal sunshine.


This paper consists of critical reflections on THE DICTIONARY OF NATIONAL BIOGRAPHY suggested by the careful study of that DICTIONARY which I made in preparation for my STUDY or BRITISH GENIUS, published in 1901. The present paper was published in the ARGOSY for November, 1900.
THE issue of the sixty-third and concluding volume of the Dictionary of National Biography brings to an end a literary task of imposing magnitude. The extent of the work may be estimated from the fact that two supplementary volumes have been necessary in order to gather in those great Englishmen who have had time to die in the long interval which has elapsed in the progress from A to Z. With these additional volumes the Dictionary will be brought down to the close of the nineteenth century and will cover altogether about fifteen hundred years. It may be indeed that there is a tendency to overestimate the magnitude of this great work--so happily begun under the inspiration of Mr. Leslie Stephen and now so happily completed under the direction of Mr. Sidney Lee--and to regard it as a unique literary achievement. This it can scarcely claim

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to be. Not to refer to the endless task, perhaps too often mentioned as a supreme monument of erudition--the Bollandists' Acta Sanctorum--one may remark that the Dictionnaire Encyclopedique des Sciences Medicates is a vaster and more wide-ranging work; while, confining ourselves to our own country, the series of translations of religious texts edited by Professor Max Mueller, though somewhat smaller in extent, is of more original conception and epoch-making importance, and the English Dictionary now being edited by Professor Murray represents a greater amount of labour and minute erudition. At the same time the Dictionary of National Biography is a sufficiently great literary monument to be able to dispense with extravagant laudation; a very necessary and laborious piece of work has here been accomplished, and we now possess an adequate and interesting summary of the achievements, in every field, of the sons and daughters of Great Britain.
This Dictionary, indeed, for the first time enables us to form any reliable estimate of the special qualities of the English genius, and the precise contribution which the men and women of Great Britain have made to civilisation. Its worth can only be realised by one who has investigated it from this point of view. As I have selected the Dictionary as a convenient basis for a psychological study of the greatest English men and women, and with this object have read most of the longer articles with careful scrutiny, I am probably in

"The Dictionary of National Biography"
a better position than most to appreciate the strong points and the weak points of this great undertaking.
I do not purpose to summarise here the results
of this study of the genius of Great Britain. I
estimate the number of really eminent persons
included in the Dictionary--eminent that is by
virtue of a high degree of inborn ability and not
through the accident of birth--as about eight
hundred. Very few of these are women; to every
hundred eminent men there are only about four
eminent women. As regards distribution through-
out the United Kingdom (eliminating individuals
of mixed ancestry) it is found that 74 per cent,
are English, nearly 16 per cent. Scotch, 5 per cent.
Irish, over 3 per cent. Welsh, and 2 per cent.
Cornish. As regards the social class from which
they spring (so far as the evidence allows us to
determine this) we find that even when we leave
out of account the large number who are sons of
peers, no fewer than 21 per cent, still clearly belong
to the small number of people who can be said to
be of "good family," and in reality the proportion
is still larger. The professional classes (often
merging into the previous higher social class) claim
over 41 per cent., a very large proportion, but here
we are able to determine its full strength; a very
extraordinary fact about the contribution of the
professional classes is that, although lawyers,
doctors, engineers, military and naval officers, etc.,
are included under this head, no fewer than half


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of the eminent persons furnished by these classes are the children of clergymen and ministers, who have thus exerted with marvellous effect the privilege, accorded to them at the Reformation, of adding to the genius of the country. Only 15 per cent, belong to the trading or commercial classes, though these range from bankers and manufacturers to publicans, and 6 per cent, to the farmer and yeoman class. The craftsman and artisan classes (closely allied to the trading class, but involving a real manual training, and including weavers, smiths, millers, saddlers, etc.) are, however, responsible for 15 per cent. The unskilled workers--the great mass of the population--have furnished scarcely 2 per cent, of our eminent and ruling men. Nothing could show more clearly than these figures the peculiarly oligarchic basis on which English civilisation has been built up. It may be of interest to present these rough figures; to analyse adequately all the results which emerge from a study of the Dictionary would require far more space than I can here dispose of. I merely refer to them here to show how valuable and instructive this great work becomes when intelligently used.
At the same time the value and charm of these volumes for most readers lie on the surface; we have here a series of often fascinatingly interesting narratives, sometimes embodying new research, and usually accompanied by an estimate of the subject's special achievement, on the whole written

"The Dictionary of National Biography"
by men who are admirably competent to form a sane judgment of their subjects. The first editor of the Dictionary, Mr. Leslie Stephen, himself possesses a special aptitude for such narratives--unbiased, shrewd yet sympathetic, intent on placing a man in true relation to his times and to the history of ideas. It is true that these special qualities, clearly dominating the early volumes,1 were accompanied by their defects. I do not propose to discuss the minor defects of the Dictionary; there are many minute errors and discrepancies which, it is easy to say, could have been avoided by more careful editing, but it must be admitted--even by a writer who is himself an editor--that even an editor is human, and that it is human to err. I refer to a certain general indifference to accurately precise biographical detail, a tendency to slur over definite yet often very significant facts because they have no obvious bearing on the more abstract interest of the subject. In a great many cases it is thus difficult to disentangle the family history, even when the facts are really known; too often the antiquated custom is perpetuated of ignoring the female element in a family. Again, we are often not told whether a man ever had children or even whether he was married. We have a right to expect the statement of so interesting and significant a fact; yet in not less than 10 per cent, of the long biographies (i.e., those extending over three pages) the point is not so much as mentioned, and we are left in the dark

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as to whether the writer was himself ignorant, whether he knew the facts so well that he forgot to mention them, or whether he thought them too trivial to mention at all. We are thus driven back for information on so important a point to more original sources of information.
There is another general charge to be brought against the national biographers,. They have frequently failed to realise where biography ends and history begins. Even if no names were appended to the articles we should know that, in many cases, the writers were historians masquerading in the disguise of biographers, and not always disposed to take their parts very seriously. Over and over again we are compelled to trudge through the same round of historical events until we are inclined to think that the work should really be called the Dictionary of National History. Yet history and biography are two quite different processes and demand quite different methods. Properly considered, great personalities constitute only one of the elements in the complex web which it is the historian's task to disentangle. It may be his business to find such personalities, but, when found, their further study belongs to the biographer, who is not concerned with the general course of history. Certainly it is an advantage for the historian to possess some skill and insight as regards the personal factors in history, just as it is an advantagefor a physiologist to be acquainted with physics. But the tasks of historian and

"The Dictionary of National Biography "
biographer remain different and involve different methods. In the history of the seventeenth century, for instance, the historian comes upon Cromwell, and he has learnt to recognise the exact weight of this personal factor in seventeenth-century affairs. But it is not his business to ascertain why it was Cromwell, and no other, who played this special part in those affairs; he is not called upon to investigate the intimate facts which made Cromwell what he was, the special qualities of his Welsh and English ancestry, or the precise influence on his character of the morbid mental affection from which he suffered in early life. These intimate and private facts the historian must largely take for granted, just as the biographer must take for granted the general course of public affairs on which these facts had so important a bearing. Such distinctions are fairly elementary, but one may well doubt whether our national biographers have always realised them; otherwise they would not so often have deluged us with the same stream of history, to the neglect of their own business, nor devoted so disproportionate a space to insignificant persons around whom some eddy of history has chanced to whirl.
So far I have spoken of the Dictionary largely as it began and developed under the influence of Mr. Leslie Stephen. It must not be forgotten, however, that about half of the work has been carried out under the editorial influence of Mr. Sidney Lee. It is evident that Mr. Lee is an editor whose mental

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qualities are very unlike those of Mr. Stephen. He is not a philosophic thinker; he is clearly not mainly preoccupied with ideas and their currents, nor much concerned to sum up a personality in a happy formula. But, on the other hand, he possesses certain qualities which Mr. Stephen has never been able to acquire. His precision of statement is admirable (though I cannot add that the latter part of the Dictionary is peculiarly free from errors and misprints), and he has a laudable passion for facts; both these qualities are of the first importance in a dictionary, where one may or may not desire to find views and opinions, but certainly desires to find the greatest amount of reliable and significant facts in the smallest amount of space. I would point to Mr. Lee's article on Sterne as a masterpiece in these respects; every essential fact is concisely stated, there is nothing superfluous, with the result that in those few pages we have a more vivid picture, and even a larger amount of biographical material, than may be found in lives of Sterne occupying several volumes. There are even indications that Mr. Lee would gladly have introduced greater method into the Dictionary; his article on Shakespeare is unique in the work by the adoption of marginal titles for each paragraph. Any uniformity of method and order in the contents of the articles it was, however, clearly impracticable to adopt at so late a stage.
Yet this question of method is fundamental, and
a lack of method is the most serious charge which


"The Dictionary of National Biography "
a student of biography can bring against this Dictionary. The method, so far as it has any, is essentially antiquated; the scientific modes of thought developed during a century have been ignored; and the founders of the Dictionary, for all that their methods show to the contrary, might have been the contemporaries of Johnson.
Why drag in, it may be asked, any question of "scientific methods "? What has science to do with biography? The answer must be that it has everything to do with it. The very word "biography" itself indicates that we have left the vague and romantic regions of history to enter the circle of the biological sciences. Biography is, or should be, at least as much of a science as ethnography; it is a description of the life of an individual just as ethnography is the description of the life of the race. It is a science in which, when we approach it seriously, both anthropology and psychology are found to have their concern; and though the data with which the national biographers had usually to be content could not satisfy a scientific mind, the recognition of scientific methods would greatly have aided their work.
It may be said, and with truth, that when the Dictionary was planned, such methods, as applied in these fields, were less developed and less widely known than they are now beginning to be, and that the tendency to greater precision in the later volumes represents the only attempt that remained possible to gain recognition for scientific methods.

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It may well be; yet one may point out that every serious student would have been immensely aided in using this Dictionary if, at the outset, it had been planned with some regard to its unquestionable relationship to the human biological sciences. It can only rarely happen that the student who consults an article in a biographical dictionary desires an undigested mass of confused facts, through which he must painfully work his way in order to find the one definite fact he needs. There are a very large number of personal facts he may desire to see stated on the best available authority, and the ideal dictionary of biography--in so far as it deals with persons of undoubted genius or talent --would present all such primary personal facts in so clear and methodical a manner and in so invariable an order, that they could be discovered at a glance. When the writer of a biographical article is allowed to stir up all his facts into a stodgy mass, it is difficult, even for himself, to discover what he has put in and what he has left out, and this lack of method is an inevitable source of perplexity and inconvenience to the readers who consult his work. Let us take, for instance, the personal appearance of a great man. It is of considerable significance, from various points of view, to know the exact manner of man that an eminent personage appeared in the flesh to his contemporaries; few things, indeed, are more interesting to know. It is never, however, quite easy to find any personal description in these articles,

"The Dictionary of National Biography "
and when found it is usually excessively brief; in 50 per cent, of the cases, as regards the most eminent persons, it is not found at all. It may be said that in many cases nothing is known of a great man's personal appearance. But a remarkable point about the national biographers is that the less is known the more carefully they often record it, and that when much is known they often record nothing. In a considerable proportion of the articles written by intimate personal friends there is not a single word to indicate that the writer had ever seen his subject in the flesh, or had any conception as to what he was like. So extraordinary a failure would have been rendered impossible even by the simplest attention to method. Moreover, it is not only important to know, definitely and reliably, the available personal facts; but to know also, with equal definiteness, what facts are not available. The untrained literary man cannot do this without a pang; it is never pleasant to state mere bald negative facts. It is evident, however, as one realises after spending much time over this Dictionary, that in order to attain the highest possible degree of serviceable-ness, the articles, so far at least as all persons of eminent genius are concerned, should be largely made up of sections and paragraphs, each with its definite heading, the order in which these follow being invariable, decided by the editors at the outset after the most careful consideration. Doubtless an omnivorous schoolgirl, for whom all facts

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are new and equally important, may prefer this Dictionary as it is; but for more serious students so unmethodical a method leads, and must lead, to much weariness and labour. Excellent as the articles generally are in their antiquated and purely literary way, they do not enable the reader to put his finger, at a glance, on the fact he is searching for, and--still more unfortunately--when the fact is absent they do not enable him to decide whether it is unknown or whether the biographer has simply overlooked it. The dates of birth and death are always treated in this Dictionary with methodical and scrupulous care; when we have a work which shall treat in order with the like scrupulous method every essential fact in an eminent life we shall possess an ideal dictionary of national biography.
It may seem both a thankless and an unthankful task to criticise the methods of a series of volumes so fascinating in their interest, a work on which so much skill and research have been expended, the only work of the kind which most of us can ever hope to see. In its admirable achievement, however, the Dictionary reveals the possibility of still higher achievement, and itself helps to inspire the ideal which will mould the work of its successors in a future generation. In the meantime we shall certainly return again and again to a work which is not only one of the noblest monuments of English literary activity in the nineteenth century but an unfailing source of instruction and delight.


I have on three occasions written of Nietzsche. The first was in the SAVOY during 1896, and my essay, reprinted in the following year in AFFIRMATIONS, was probably the first comprehensive study of Nietzsche in English ; in 1917 I wrote, by editorial invitation, the article on Nietzsche for Hastings' ENCYCLOPAEDIA OF RELIGION AND ETHICS. Between these two came the shortest and slightest of the three, in the Paris WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW for April 30th, 1903, here reprinted.
THE nearly simultaneous publication of an English translation of Morgenröthe (The Dawn of Day) and a study in German by Dr. Möbius on the pathological aspects of Nietzsche, suggests many reflections concerning the variegated progress of Nietzsche's fame. The young professor of philology in the University of Bale, who was compelled by ill-health at the beginning of his career to retire on a pension, spent nearly the whole remaining period of his active life in wandering among the health resorts of the Tyrol and North Italy, and in writing books, which attracted no attention, and gradually became stranger and more extravagant as the characteristic exaltation of general paralysis permeated his brain. At last, in 1888, Nietzsche was "discovered" ; Brandes,

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the most alert and the most catholic of European critics, chanced to meet with the now considerable series of books which had thus appeared and recognised that a new and powerful personality had come into literature. Almost at this moment, after a period of unusually intense literary activity --a final flaring-up of the dying intellect--Nietzsche's mind was extinguished. At the beginning of January, 1889, Brandes received a brief and enigmatic note, written in a large handwriting on lines ruled in pencil, unstamped, wrongly addressed, and signed "The Crucified One." On the day on which this was probably posted Nietzsche was found helpless in the streets of Turin. From that moment he never regained complete consciousness of himself or of his surroundings. His intelligence had fallen to the level of a little child's, and so remained till his death more than ten years later.
During recent years several of Nietzsche's books have been translated into English, but with an enthusiasm which was, to say the least, injudicious. The English publishers exclusively brought forward the latest, the most extravagant, the most insane portions of his work, and it is not surprising that, except among those extravagant persons to whom extravagance naturally appeals, Nietzsche has until lately found few English readers. Now at length one of the sanest and most truly characteristic of his books has appeared in a translation which, if it fails to render the strength and beauty

The Genius of Nietzsche
of the original, is at all events careful and correct, and at last, even in England, Nietzsche is beginning to find appreciators and admirers.
The tragic irony of Nietzsche's fate has, however, brought it about that, at the moment when he has at last gained serious recognition in England, Dr. Mobius, an alienist of recognised position in Germany, has for the first time ascertained and published all the facts in Nietzsche's life, as well as in his work, which demonstrate his insanity and its slow and insidious development, facts which cannot always be clearly traced in the otherwise admirable biography which Nietzsche's sister is publishing. Dr. Mobius, it should be said, is not one of those who are bent on proving at all costs the universal insanity of genius; he is a sympathetic student of genius for its own sake, and not for the sake of enlarging the frontiers of psychiatry. Until the period when he wrote Zarathustra, Dr. Mobius very reasonably concludes, Nietzsche must be regarded as sane. Dr. Mobius has, however, succeeded in showing--what could not be gathered from the biography--that on both sides he probably inherited a slight but definite strain of nervous disease. Every acute reader, even of his earliest works, must indeed feel that here is a writer too abnormally sensitive to enable one to count him with any probability among the general mass of healthy, well-balanced humanity. But with Zarathustra, the malady of general paralysis that had already

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taken possession of him, showed its first marked eruption. The pace at which this work was written, and the writer's mental exaltation at the time, alone indicate the morbid nature of the activity at work. And with this new stage of acute mental disorder emerge all those ideas which the disciple of Nietzsche most easily assimilates--the doctrine of the privileged "over-man," the statement of "immoralism," the violent assertion of the evils of sympathy, the command, "Be hard," which is only rightly understood when we recognise it as a counsel of perfection addressed to the teacher's own over-sensitive brain. At the same time, as Dr. Mobius already recognises, even in Zarathustra and the other works written during the last four years of his intellectual activity, it can by no means be said that the genius has departed. On the contrary, it is in many respects heightened. Excessive, fantastic, perverse, obscure, this later work often is, but in force and splendour of diction, in imaginative vision, in what he might himself have termed halcyonic wit, it often surpasses his earlier, more sane, and balanced work. It is not strange that in the face of so irritating a mystery the critical mind has often been torn in two, on the one hand taken captive by the accomplished artist in psychological analysis, on the other hand, relentlessly stiffening itself against the acceptance of sheer insanity.
The doctrine of the insanity of genius, notwith-
standing many thorough-going champions, may be


The Genius of Nietzsche
said to be finally discredited. It suffices to select any hundred men of genius at random to find that while certainly one or another has been insane, that is also the case among the general population taken at random. Still the proportion remains extremely small. Moreover, when we investigate the individuals who make up the small proportion we find that the manifestations of their genius are not even parallel with the manifestations of their insanity; when they displayed most genius they were sane. The exceptions are extremely few, far fewer than is commonly supposed. They do, however, occur. In Christopher Smart, the poet, whose one masterpiece was written in an asylum, we see quite clearly how the ferment of mania, on this occasion, mingled happily with his small genius and raised it to a height of vague imaginative splendour--however perilously close to the abyss of incoherence--which, without that ferment, he never attained, and never could attain. In Rousseau, again, we see how beneficially insanity may stimulate genius. During all his life Rousseau was mentally morbid, during his later years he was unquestionably insane, the victim of delusions of persecution. The insane belief that he lived in the midst of enemies who were perpetually plotting his ruin, wrought his tortured brain to that pitch of heroic self-defence which alone could enable him to write the intricate self-revelation of the Confessions. In recent times there has probably been no more remarkable instance of

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the same combination than we see in Nietzsche. His insanity distorted the equipoise of his fine and subtle intellect, but at the same time he owed to the torturing sting of that malady a poignant sensibility, a penetrating impulse to reach the core of things, and an imaginative atmosphere, which, without it, he could never have reached. In Nietzsche are thus realised many of the traditional sayings concerning genius, which are usually so far astray. Here the madness of genius is a real and definite fact; here there is indeed a consuming flame which flares up fatally and irresistibly until one of the finest brains of the century was reduced to little better than a heap of ashes in the healthy body of a child.
When we understand the rare combination that took place in Nietzsche, we may see our way to a sound critical estimate of his work, and at the same time realise why it is that such an estimate has been so difficult to reach. To accept him as a great teacher of morals, to reject him as the victim of insanity, have been fairly obvious alternatives which alike reveal a lack of critical discernment. We see a man who was in touch with the finest culture of his time at nearly every point--it cannot be said at quite every point, for the plastic arts never existed for Nietzsche--and who seeks to probe to the bottom the most essential questions of life. Slowly the acuteness of that search is intensified by the development of a disease which has its seat in the searching intellect itself. More

The Genius of Nietzsche
and more the man becomes absorbed in an intellectual struggle with his malady, and the thoughts and images he fashions become, more and more, merely the weapons of his personal warfare. For this reason they cannot be of much use to the average citizen, but the spectacle of that heroic struggle, and even much that resulted from it up till the last, still remains helpful and stimulating. The progress of the struggle is recorded, mostly as pensées strung together at random, in Nietzsche's works. These pensées are not of equal value, they are frequently conflicting, sometimes obscure, even outrageous. There are many pearls here, as Dr. Möbius truly remarks, but they are not all pearls. It may be added that as we gaze at them we realise how the most beautiful things in the world may sometimes grow around a point of disease.


This essay on Frederick van Eeden was published in the WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW of May 28th, 1903. Since it was written, Van Eeden has pursued his physical and spiritual Odyssey in the Old World and the New, through various phases, the last of which known to the world led him into the Catholic Church.
TWELVE years ago, when Kennan's book on Siberia was attracting wide attention, a young Dutchman appeared before the public of Europe as the writer of an open letter to the Czar of Russia on the treatment of political prisoners. It was a somewhat insulting letter written with a certain ironic eloquence; as the writer himself acknowledged, he was made of that sonorous kind of metal which cannot help vibrating, like a bell, under the stress of outside impulses, however futile the sound given forth may be. The writer of this letter was a young doctor and literary man, called Frederick van Eeden. Although little over thirty years of age, Dr. van Eeden had attained a wide reputation--in his own specialty one may even say throughout Europe--as an authority on the curative applications of hypnotism, which he had

A Dutch Tolstoy
studied in their headquarters at Paris and Nancy and was actively applying at Amsterdam in association with Dr. van Renthergem. In his own country he was chiefly known as the author of three or four comedies which had been successful on the stage, and as one of the founders of De Nieuwe Gids. For this review--still existing though he is no longer connected with its direction --Van Eeden wrote a number of essays which show a very wide interest in European literature, and are now collected in three volumes of Studies. He has also published several volumes of poems. The first of Van Eeden's books which can, however, be said to possess any real significance as the revelation of a new personality is Little Johannes, which appeared in 1885. There is a certain superficial fairy-tale element in this book, and for the English translation it seemed on this account proper to invite Mr. Andrew Lang to write an introduction. The introduction was written, but Mr. Lang wisely confined himself to the topic of fairy tales in general and said not a word regarding the book to which his essay was prefixed. Little Johannes is anything but a fairy tale. It is true that it begins with a wonderfully sympathetic account of the life and surroundings of a child who wanders into Elfin-land, and this machinery of the story is more or less maintained to the end. But very soon we realise that the device has been adopted merely in order to show human life at a new and belittling angle; we are

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presented with successive visions of the most vital problems of the human world, concerning which the author shows himself as a sceptic refusing to accept the most sacred words among men and briefly sketching a kind of pantheistic philosophy of his own.
A few years later appeared the book by which Van Eeden has so far attained his chief reputation in Holland, Johannes Viator. It is the most complete expression he has reached of his vision of the world, of his gospel of life. This book, however, will shortly appear in an English translation, and it would be out of place to attempt to anticipate the judgment which the English reader may pronounce upon it. Another and still more recent book, Van de Koele Meren des Doods--now widely known to English and American readers as The Deeps of Deliverance--must not be passed over, for it is in this novel that we may best observe Van Eeden's methods as an artist.
It is the story of the whole life of a young girl of somewhat morbid temperament, born with a refined but rather sensuous nature, who by her very innocence and ignorance is led into a marriage which is no marriage, and so, by equally natural and imperceptible steps, falls into the hands of a lover, and ultimately, under the degrading influence of morphia, to still lower moral depths, finally recovering her balance, and leading the few remaining years of her life in peaceful retirement among the poor country folk of her native place.

A Dutch Tolstoy
In sympathetic insight, in delicate perception of character, this picture of a sensitive, loving, degraded, fine-souled woman--a more common type than we are perhaps always willing to admit --could scarcely be surpassed. It suffices to place Van Eeden in all but the first rank of contemporary novelists. One cannot fail to see that the seven years of therapeutical hypnotism in the Amsterdam clinique have not been without advantage for the novelist; it is such women as Hedwig that the doctor whose specialty is nervous disease most easily learns to understand and to feel pity for. It may indeed be gathered from a remark made in the course of the novel that the author founded his story on a real case. But all the clinical documents in the world will be of no artistic use to the doctor who is not an artist.
As a novelist, Van Eeden may be said to represent that modern reaction against naturalism which is yet willing to profit by the lesson that naturalism has taught. The methods of Zola belong to the past, but they have at least served to make it possible for all who come after to give easy and simple expression to the most veracious presentation of life. The methods of naturalism sought to lay bare to the coldest vision the minutest details of life, not indeed as such methods were practised by Zola--for Zola was too much devoted at heart to the romanticism he struggled against, ever to be able to lay bare anything--but at all events in the hands of the greater artists with

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whom he was more or less associated. Those hard and minute details no longer seem to us very precious. But we never cease to be drawn towards a truly intimate vision of life. In such a book as this of Van Eeden's we see how the expression of crude, precise, physical details may fall away as without significance, while yet the novelist sets forth every vital fact that seems to him truly significant, with a quiet simplicity and courage that is never really offensive, though it must take away the breath of our average English novelists who know how to be impossibly romantic, and know indeed also how to be offensive, but cannot be simple and veracious in face of the deepest facts of life. It may even be said that so great a master as Tolstoy is at this point at some disadvantage; he grasps firmly the great spiritual facts; he throws in at times crude touches of physical realism; the modern direct naturalistic vision of life he is too old to acquire.
A man of Van Eeden's temperament is, however, hardly content with an artistic medium of expression, however veracious. We learn this easily from the strong element of mysticism that emerges in the course of Hedwig's history, objectively as it is introduced. Like Tolstoy he has written little pamphlets on the meaning of existence; like Tolstoy, also, he believes in a more or less communistic life, and in 1899 founded a community on this basis at Bussun, called, after Thoreau's book, Walden. He believes in the

A Dutch Tolstoy
collective possession of the land, and has founded a society, now numbering some three thousand persons, for the realisation of this project; while he has lately started a weekly paper for the furtherance of the same object, and is at present engaged on a book which will set forth his views on social questions.
It may seem an injustice to this modest and comparatively young Dutchman to compare him with the great Russian whose pen is so far mightier and more skilful than his own, the most famous of living authors. It is unjust not merely because Van Eeden is still young, but also because he is by no means a disciple of Tolstoy; as an artist he represents more modern methods, while as a social reformer his views are not marked by the impossible extravagance of Tolstoy's. He is, moreover, distinctly and essentially a Dutchman, with that special mixture of realism and idealism, of humanity and mysticism, which marks the traditions of his race. But, both alike, they are at once artists and teachers and both as artists and teachers they have something to say. The combination is not perhaps altogether happy; it may certainly be of use to a teacher to be an artist; it is less certainly of use to an artist to be a teacher. But however that may be, the combination is in its finest manifestations sufficiently rare. Van Eeden is one of the few living writers who is still worth listening to, whatever we may think of his art or of his message.


This essay on Browning appeared in the WEEKLY CRITICAL
REVIEW for August 21th, 1903.

TO the philosophic spectator of literary criticism--if such there be--the spectacle presented by Browning's critics must be puzzling. They are all clearly anxious, even eager, to admire Browning, they are all certain that there is something to admire; but as to what that something is, the most various opinions prevail. If one attempts to sum up the estimates of critics it would, on the whole, appear that Browning is an artist and poet of the very first order, who has discovered new forms of poetic art and opened up new horizons of poetic energy; that he is, in addition, a writer who merits our admiration on account of his extraordinary erudition and scholarship; that, moreover, we have to recognise in him a psychologist of the highest order; that, further, he was a philosophic, or, at all events, theological moralist, with a new message to humanity; that he was, finally, one of the supreme amateurs of the world, in the higher sense of that much-abused word.

Browning's Place in Literature
Everyone who is anxious, and even eager, to admire Browning and to place him justly--as indeed we all are--cannot fail to find here an amply satisfying conception. A man who combined the varying qualities of a Shakespeare, a Herbert Spencer, a St. Paul, and a Leonardo must certainly be regarded as a unique personality. Yet even on this calm acclivity to which the critics of Browning have so skilfully conducted us, it is inevitable that, however sympathetic we may remain, certain reflections should arise. It may not be altogether useless to give expression to these reflections in order.
For the moment, indeed, we may put aside the first point, in regarding Browning as poet and artist. We may assume, as a working hypothesis, that he was, even essentially, a poet and artist, while for the present not attempting to determine the precise quality or degree of his poetic art.
First, then, there is that erudition and scholarship to which the critic of Browning never fails to direct our admiring attention. It can scarcely be claimed that erudition is more than a subsidiary aid to the psychologist, the moralist, or even the amateur, and, indeed, it is in connection with Browning as poet that this vision of immense learning is evoked. Here, it must first be pointed out that, in reality, every poet--every poet, that is, who goes beyond the simple swallow-flights of personal lyric song--is learned. Learning is a necessary part of a poet's stock-in-trade, of his

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raw material. Homer, when we rightly understand his relation to his time, appears as a very learned poet; Shakespeare was appallingly learned. Keats was learned. The truly notable point about the learning of Browning is not its existence, nor even its extent, still less its accuracy--he was in no proper sense a scholar, and never professed to be--but the fact that it was united with an extremely retentive memory. Homer and Shakespeare and Keats do not impress us by their learning; to repeat a famous simile, in their learning they were like workers in the diamond mines of Golconda: they only sought for jewels; Browning's absorbant memory was like a sponge that sucked up diamonds and mud alike, and with the native energy of his temperament, he squeezed them out alike. His learning was thus more conspicuous; we need not too hastily conclude that it was greater or more admirable.
The point may be easily yielded; but Browning's position as a great psychologist remains unaffected by any considerations as to the precise quantity and quality of his learning. It is claimed that Browning's special distinction is the invention of the dramatic lyric, and the distinctive character of this literary species lies in its psychological insight, its casuistical skill, its ability to present in all ramifications the mental attitude of a person quite other than the dramatic lyrist himself. "Bishop Blougrom's Apology" is commonly regarded as one of the most accomplished examples

Browning's Place in Literature
of this species. It so happens that we can go behind Bishop Blougrom; Browning stated definitely that in Blougrom he had in mind Cardinal Wiseman, and that, moreover, he was not moved by any hostile motive; he was really writing an "apology" for Cardinal Wiseman.
In the absence of any intimate personal knowledge of Wiseman--an absence of knowledge which it is fairly certain that Browning shared--we must fall back on the biography of Wiseman, which presents us with a completely intelligible and, so far as can be judged, veracious portrait of a man whose sincerity was beyond question, and who bears scarcely any resemblance to Blougrom. Browning's psychological defence of Wiseman has, therefore, no real relation to the man he is defending; it is even without that kind of value which belongs to a felicitious caricature. As a psychological analysis it breaks down altogether; its value must be estimated on an artistic basis. It is not difficult to see why the claim of Browning the psychologist cannot be maintained. As Mr. Chesterton, the latest and one of the most discriminating of his critics, quite truly observes, Browning was not an "intellectual." He had not that sensitive, supple, receptive temperament--such as Renan possessed in so high a degree--which enables a man to put aside for the time his own convictions and his own point of view, to shift his standpoint, to enter imaginatively into another man's skin. Browning's defective psychological

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insight is reflected in his defective critical insight. The attraction he felt for insignificant personalities in art has always been noted, but it is usual to slur over the fact that, in many cases certainly, Browning himself by no means regarded them as insignificant. His critical estimates were, even in his own day, already passing out of date. In two of the happiest and most effective of his poems it is easy to read between the lines that he regarded Andrea del Sarto as a painter who narrowly escaped reaching the highest summits of art, and Fra Lippo Lippi as the painter of mere feminine prettiness. Browning's dramatic lyric is really a distorted personal lyric, and the distinction involves an important difference. We are not really being led into the intimate recesses of another man's soul, we are simply being told how one Robert Browning--a sturdy, conventional English gentleman, endowed with an extraordinarily vigorous mind, and very pronounced views on morality and religion--would feel if by some mysterious fate he had himself become a scamp, a coward, or a humbug. Browning evidently delighted in inventing difficult exercises of this kind, and was justified, for they constituted a gymnastics peculiarly suited to his athletic mind. But they have no very close connection with psychology and not much with casuistry.
The critic of Browning becomes indifferent alike to his erudition and his psychology when he turns to Browning the moralist and theologian. The

Browning's Place in Literature
profound sincerity of Browning's moral and theological convictions cannot be questioned. They were all the more fundamental, and not the less genuine, because they were temperamental. Indeed, one may almost say they were inherited. Little as Browning had in common with his father, the thorough-going eighteenth-century optimism which his father had imbibed from Pope, and the nineteenth-century Liberal Nonconformity which he had added to it, were accepted intact by his son, whose native energy of character merely made the optimism more aggressive--so aggressive, indeed, that it sometimes almost persuades us of the beauty of pessimism--and the Liberal Nonconformity more comprehensive, as his restless mental fertility played around them. But in essentials they never moved very far from the starting point. "Merely man, and nothing more"--but for Browning a "man" was a sturdy, conventional, British, Liberal Nonconformist, middle-class gentleman. Thus Browning represented admirably one aspect of the religious thought of his time, just as Tennyson, with his more gracious, but perhaps less radical, Broad Church Anglicanism, represented another. But let us turn to one of the great masters--to Shakespeare. Here also we find, as well as a great poet, a moralist grappling with the problems of life and of death. But we always find Shakespeare above or below the plane on which the definitely circumscribed groups of believers are fixed. It is a curious fact, all the

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more notable since it is clearly not due to any trimming caution, that Shakespeare never offends the most sensitive free-thinker, the most devout Catholic. It can scarcely be said of Browning. Whether we are able to enter the little chapel at Camberwell, or whether we only listen outside, we cannot fail to feel the stimulating magnetism of this strident preacher's voice, with its unfailing theological optimism. But it is not thus that we approach Goethe or Shakespeare.
But, after all,what have scholarship, psychology, theology, to do with literature? It is with Browning the poet and artist that the critic is finally and centrally concerned. That Browning possessed the fundamental temperament of the poet, and that he strenuously strove to be an artist, may fairly be taken as facts that are beyond argument. It is when an attempt is made to define his precise position and to estimate its significance that the difficulty comes in. Mr. Chesterton has truly said that the general characteristic of Browning's form at its point of greatest originality is its dexterous use of the grotesque, more especially as used to express sublime emotion, and that the underlying source and meaning of this grotesqueness is energy. In other words, Browning is the poet of energy artistically expressing itself in the grotesque. This seems admirable. Then Mr. Chesterton goes on bravely to argue that grotesque energy is a form of art which has been reached at the highest moments of human inspiration. But here we

Browning's Place in Literature
pause, and, once again, we begin to reflect. Certainly, energy is very fundamental in Browning; it was ingrained in the nervous texture of the man, in his loud voice, his emphatic gestures: "I was ever a fighter." And the man is reflected in his work. He cannot easily talk without shouting, or walk without running; if the humour should take him to dance it could surely be nothing less athletic than a bolero. He presents in a supreme degree the quality which Coleridge termed Nimiety, the quality of Too-muchness, and certainly a man of this temperament is naturally attracted to the grotesque. The man of exuberant energy craves to come in touch with the material aspect of things; he wants to handle strange, rough, unfamiliar shapes. The grotesque, one may point out, always gives the impression of unconquered material, of matter not yet subdued by spirit, it must always be unfamiliar. This last characteristic was clearly realised by Browning himself, and he describes those strange and quaintly-shaped sea creatures "which only the fisher looks grave at." To the man who truly knows them they are not grotesque. Many persons can probably remember when as children they first heard a violin; the player may have been a master; but the impression produced by the unfamiliar sound of the instrument was exquisitely grotesque.
When we really understand a grotesque thing, when it has become luminous to intelligence, it is no more grotesque than is any ordinary "two-legged

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bird without feathers" to his fellow men. It
will be seen that we have struck on the reason
why it is that to exalt unduly the poetry of the
grotesque reveals a certain mental confusion, a
certain defect of critical insight. The searching
inquisitive artist is interested in the grotesque;
Leonardo, as his note-books show, was eagerly
interested in the grotesque, but there is nothing
grotesque in the art of Leonardo; he treated the
grotesque as crude material of art, and in passing
through his searching brain it ceased to be gro-
tesque. The poet of energy, however, delights in
exercising his energy in the manipulation of the
crude material of art; he loves to pile up the raw
strange chunks, with all the sharp points sticking
out, into fantastic edifices. He strives to embody
the maximum amount of natural material in his
art. No doubt there was a real organic reason
why Browning adopted this method: it was the
method that suited him best. Mr. Chesterton
observes that Browning was a poet who stuttered.
There is real insight in this remark. A person who
stutters is expending an immense amount of articu-
latory energy, but he has forgotten the less obvious
but equally essential necessity for harmonious
breathing. His failure is strictly analogous to
that of the young violinist who puts so much
energy into his bow-hand that he forgets his
string-hand. Browning's poetry is a stutter, an
idealised stutter, in its perpetual emphasis, its
strenuous combative energy, possessing so Titanic


Browning's Place in Literature
a quality as to induce even the critic who has acutely pointed out this characteristic to place Browning in the front rank of the world's poets and artists.
Yet let us turn to the great artists, whose mastery is universally acknowledged; whatever the form of their art may have been the grotesque has fallen away to an altogether subordinate place; there are no heavy chunks of unworked material, no sharp points sticking out; even energy is no more visible, being absorbed in securing the perfect adjustment of each part to the whole; string-hand and bow-hand are working together in absolute harmony. "I was ever a fighter"--that saying was never heard from the lips of any supreme artist. Look at some fragment of sculpture by a Greek, or by Rodin, and it seems as light as foam and almost as translucent; listen to some piece of music by Mozart, its felicity is divine, but there is nothing in it; stand in the room that holds the Meninas of Velasquez, and you seem to see a vision that has come miraculously, effortlessly, which in another moment may cease to be. Or take the art we are here immediately concerned with, and on whatever scale of magnitude you please: Shakespeare or Verlaine; we no longer hear the strenuous, insistent voice of the stutterer, we seem only conscious of a breath, on which the meaning aerially floats. It is idle to argue that Hudibras may be placed beside the Canterbury Tales, and the Alchemist beside Lear. Browning
M 169

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belongs to the same circle in the Paradise of Art as Butler and Ben Jonson; as an artist his ambitions were greater than Butler's, his achievements scarcely less; as a personality and a poet he is not unworthy to be named with Ben Jonson. We do him an injustice by comparing him to Chaucer or Shakespeare; with the divine masters he can never be, but his place in our literature remains a noble and assured place.


This article was published in the WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW for September 17th, 1903. Since then the notable name of Henry Handel Richardson is to be added to the foremost writers of Australian fiction.
THE prevailing aspect of the Australian bush is commonly said to be of monotony and melancholy. That is the aspect emphasised by Marcus Clarke in an impressive passage which has often been quoted, and not seldom imitated. In the interesting Preface to a collection of short Australian stories reprinted from the Sydney Bulletin, the most natively characteristic of Australian journals, Mr. A. G. Stephens protests, not without reason, against the prevalence of this belief in the melancholy of the bush; it is, he says, a misconception fostered by Englishmen; yet in the typical Australian stories to which his remarks are prefixed, there are few descriptions of the bush which fail to confirm the impression Mr. Stephens states to be false. It is not difficult to see why those who attempt to describe the bush usually fall back so easily on the epithets "weird" and "melancholy." A land in which the predominant

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tree, the eucalyptus, has the fantastic habit of shedding its bark in great sheets, and where man has rendered these trees over vast areas still more uncanny by ring-barking them to death, a land in which the cries of birds and other living things are for the most part shrill or mournful, and where the appearance of the animals as well as of the trees is peculiar and primitive to an extent unknown elsewhere, is a land that may well seem hideous and melancholy to those who arrive in it as exiles from home, or even to its own children in the impatient eagerness of youth. And yet the Australian bush is full of exquisite beauty. One who comes to it, not as an unwilling exile, but content to live for six months at a time without approaching within twenty miles of the little townships which are themselves only about the size of small English villages learns to see its gracious beauty better than its sadness. The gently undulating hills bathed in eternal sunshine and peace, the exhilarating air, the loveliness of spring when the wattle--the Australian acacia--flings its trailing golden blossoms over the land, the strange exotic products of this primitive continent, all these things have a life-long charm for one to whom they have once revealed their beauty.
Just as the Australian novelist delights to describe the melancholy aspects of the scenery of his native land, so also he insists on the melancholy aspects of the life of its inhabitants. Of all themes

Fiction in the Australian Bush
none seems to attract him so much as the lugubrious deaths of lost wanderers in the parched deserts of the interior. His appetite for tragedy, for robbery, rape, murder, almost equals that of the early Elizabethan dramatists. It is a crude and youthful taste, doubtless, but the love of strong sensation which frequently marks the beginnings of art is not necessarily morbid and may only be a sign of young and vigorous life. Even when he is dealing with those inhabitants of the land, the bushmen, drovers, shepherds and so forth--whose occupations are necessarily peaceful and who can seldom be brought into contact with tragedy--the Australian story-teller delights to dwell on their uncouth roughness, and revels in the effort to suggest to the reader the unspeakable character of their language. For one who knows the true average Australian of the bush, the sons of the settlers who went out to the land in the great immigration movements of the middle of the nineteenth century, it requires an effort to pass from the Australian bush-inhabitants of fiction to those of real life. When I recall the quiet Australian farmer who, as he once acknowledged to me in a sudden moment of expansion, would often at sunrise ascend the hill, near which he was born and around which his own children were growing up, to become lost for an hour at a time in the beauty around him, and when I think of the innumerable traits of humanity and refinement one meets with throughout the bush, I realise that the

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semi-imbecile swagsman and the drunken swearing drover are not the most important products of Australia, and may even be ignored altogether.
Among the younger writers of Australian fiction, --leaving out of account those who have more or less severed themselves from Australia and chosen to write mainly for an English public--Lawson has attracted attention, and deservedly, for while he makes no claim to distinction and his ideals of artistic perfection are humble, he is yet an accom-, plished writer who knows how to present the real condition of bush life in a sympathetic and human fashion. The special charm of Lawson's work lies in its unambitious simplicity and veracity. Dor-rington, a young writer of English birth who is, however, exclusively connected with Australia, has published a volume of short stories, Castro's Last Sacrament, which makes a higher challenge. Dor-rington is a conscious artist and knows that a writer can be great and tragic within small space. A competent critic has stated that his book contains the most brilliant stories that have yet been produced in Australia. Brilliant they certainly are, and they would be finer still if in his effort to attain tragic intensity Dorrington had not often fallen into mere violence. In every kind of art, violence is the mark of weakness rather than of strength; it is the strained effort of the man who wants to be stronger than he can be; strength, indeed, the violent man may have but he is living

Fiction in the Australian Bush
on his capital, and always near the end of it. The consciousness of this strain frequently spoils the reader's enjoyment in Dorrington's certainly remarkable stories.
There is another form of fiction that we may reasonably expect from a new country: the novel of the young and ambitious woman who dreams of the large world beyond the loneliness and pettiness of her own narrow life. A novel of this kind, My Brilliant Career, was produced a year or two ago by a young writer who calls herself "Miles Franklin." It is a vivid and sincere book, certainly the true reflection of a passionate young nature, impatient of the inevitable limitations of the life around her. Such a book has its psychological interest, the interest that belongs to the confessions of a Marie Baschkirtseff of the bush; but something more than emotion is needed to make fine literature; and here we miss any genuine instinct of art or any mature power of thought, and are left at the end only with a painful sense of crudity. Miles Franklin is ardently devoted to Australia, but to a remote ideal Australia, and in the eagerness of her own embittered and egoistic mood she tramples under foot the things that really make Australia. One feels that My Brilliant Career was inspired by the same impulse as another youthful book written from the recesses of another continent, Olive Schreiner's Story of an African Farm, but in intellectual force and artistic perception the two writers cannot be compared.

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In a little volume of short stories that has been published recently, the Bush Studies of Barbara Baynton, we seem to find a writer who, though with something of the artistic crudity of Miles Franklin, yet reveals a genuine native force, a more than merely emotional or temperamental energy, that one is less sure of in the other young Australian writers of fiction. The distinction of Barbara Baynton's work is not simply that it is objective--a characteristic indicated by the title of the book--but that it reveals an intensity of vision which is of the real stuff of art and more than redeems the writer's sins in the minor matters of literary style. In Barbara Baynton, as in Miles Franklin, there is the same unsympathetic attitude towards the life of the bush, the same haughty and bitter impatience with the stupidities and platitudes of a commonplace environment. But Barbara Baynton has, notwithstanding, the essential artist's eye for the picturesque aspects of this environment. When the plain young woman with the muddy complexion in "Billy Skywonkie," one of the best of these stories, begins her long and miserable journey to the lonely bush station where she has accepted the post of, as she believes, housekeeper to the boss, and the train drags its way through the hot shelterless barren land, "She closed her eyes from the monotony of the dead plain. Suddenly the engine cleared its throat in shrill welcome to two iron tanks, hoisted twenty feet and blazing like evil eyes from a vanished

Fiction in the Australian Bush
face. Beside them it squatted on its hunkers, placed a blackened thumb on its pipe and hissed through its closed teeth like a snared wild cat, while gulping yards of water." And in "Scrammy 'And," doubtless the most powerful of these studies--which tells with the minute concentrated energy of this writer how an old shepherd who had been left alone in his hut with his dog is murdered for his money--we perpetually find the same vivid, if sometimes rather confused, vision of the life of the bush. The murderer seeks to unpen the sheep in order to distract the dog from the defence of his master; "but the hurdles of the yard faced the hut and the way those thousand eyes reflected the rising moon was disconcerting. The whole of the night seemed pregnant with eyes." A writer who visualises so intensely, almost instinctively, the scenes she paints, certainly has the makings of a fine artist.
It is always interesting to study the literature of a young race, the offshoot of an old race living under the influences of an absolutely new environment. The interest of such work is often out of all relation to its absolute literary quality, because every time, whether in Spanish South America or English Australia, we see the outcome of a new combination of influences and ideals, a combination which has never exactly come about before. Even the fact that in every such young literature we can always trace the influences of ancient Europe, even something of the corruptions and

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refinements of the most civilised modernity, by no means destroys the interest, but even adds to it. We recall the figures of those Goths whom Sidonius tells us of, the greasy, good-natured giants who lolled on the silken cushions of Gaulish and Roman palaces, filled with the intoxicating wines of Italy. In a land like Australia where a predominantly northern and British race, brought into closer contact with the sunshine, has become accustomed to find the extremes of luxury and hardship almost side by side, and is more naturally apt than in the. home of its fathers to worship the ideals of physical culture, a young nation runs the risk of becoming rotten before it is ripe. That is a risk which the Australians may happily escape, as for the most part their ancient Gothic relations escaped it, and the beginnings of their national literature will one day, we may be sure, be a subject of reverent study.


This sketch of the earlier stage of the philosophy of Jules de Gaultier appeared in the WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW for October 1st, 1903. / have presented some later stages in THE DANCE OF LIFE.
TO the philosophic critic of literature Flaubert is irresistibly attractive. His genius is at once so profound and so impersonal, so deliberately disinterested in the face of all the ideas and emotions which commonly move mankind, that the thoughtful explorer is impelled to let his plummet down into these limpid depths to see if he cannot find bottom and map out a philosophic chart. This happened to M. Jules de Gaultier at what appears to have been the outset of his career, and twelve years ago he published a notable pamphlet entitled Le Bovarysme. In every man, whether in fiction or in real life, there are, as this critic assumed, two main aspects, one physiological, the other psychological. In the first aspect a man is born with a nature, fixed by heredity, which has imparted to him certain aptitudes, and deprived him of other aptitudes. In the other aspect he has been brought into an environment, he has been submitted to an

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education, he has acquired ideas, which may possibly have no relation whatever to the natural impulses and aptitudes he possesses by heredity. Hence the possibility of conflict between the more or less artificial psychological man and the hereditary physiological man. And hence the ability we all possess to conceive ourselves other than we are. All the comedy of the world, and its tragedy, rest on this ability. The power of conceiving ourselves other than we are, M. Jules de Gaultier found illustrated in all Flaubert's chief characters, and after the heroine in whom it is most tragically represented he called it, perhaps not very happily, "le Bovarysme."
But after the publication of this pamphlet its author became acquainted with the works of Nietzsche, just then beginning to become known in France. He at once perceived that Nietzsche's later doctrines, more especially in Beyond Good and Evil, had a very distinct bearing on that conception of Bovaryism which he had founded on Flaubert's novels and that, indeed, they enlarged it so greatly as to transform it altogether. As it originally stood, Bovaryism indicated that an unhappy fiction had placed man in opposition to the tendencies of his own real nature and rendered him comic or tragic accordingly; he suffered for accepting a fiction rather than the truth of his own nature. But Nietzsche had applied his relentlessly dissolving analysis to this very question of "truth" and "fiction" in life, and he had shown

that we are justified in regarding life as more final and ultimate than even truth, which is its servant and not its master ; and that fiction may be truth in so far as it truly serves life. In a subtle and thoughtful philosophic study, De Kant à Nietzsche, M. de Gaultier discussed this question of the nature of truth and fiction, in reference to life and morals, arguing against the sterilising influence of Kant's later attitude, and emphasising the fruit-fulness of Nietzsche's conception.
Having realised the narrow and imperfect character of his early view of Bovaryism, and the immensely increased range and significance which it possessed when fertilised by Nietzschian ideas, M. de Gaultier's next task was to re-write and enlarge his early study of Le Bovarysme, which accordingly reappeared last year among the publications of the Mercure de France. Here Bovaryism, no longer regarded as simply the method whereby a great artist showed the course of human failure in life, assumed its full development as the universal process by which men not only fall but also rise, by fashioning themselves to the model of their conceptions, the process indeed by which whole communities and civilisations evolve the conceptions which are life-giving, and when they no longer subserve life replace them by others. Bovaryism thus became an original view of the whole process of evolution.
Now M. de Gaultier has published another book, La Fiction Universelle, in which the same conception

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is pushed still further and admirably exemplified. No radically new modification has been introduced--though the author has availed himself of some of the ideas and illustrations in M. Remy de Gourmont's remarkable book, La Culture des Idées--but on the whole it may be said to present M. de Gaultier's conception in its most attractive as well as its most developed form. Unlike the earlier books, it is not mainly made up of philosophical or psychological analysis. The author now uses his conception as a method of applied critical study, and he presents a good example of his method in the study of the Gon-courts regarded as symbols of the Bovaryism of culture. The limitations of the art of the Gon-courts, and the achievement possible within these limitations, could not be more clearly set forth. The author represents the Goncourts as becoming artists not, as has sometimes been the case, from exuberance of life, but from defective vitality, from inaptitude for life, and turning to art as to religion, with the ascetic renunciation of intellectual saints. The poverty of their initial gift, apparently most marked in Edmond, was in large measure compensated by the religious ardour with which the idea of art moved them ; heroic Bovaryism here found its justification, and the Goncourts moulded themselves into the artists they were not made, though only at the cost of perpetual suffering. They were indeed aided by two secrets--the emotion produced by their own experiences as men of

letters, and the discovery of the pathological element as an influence in life--but on the whole the sense of life was never revealed to them, their Bovaryism could never attain the specific characters of humanity. They remained strictly spectators of the world, passing through life as travellers in a strange country, for whom every smallest detail is new and noteworthy. Even the siege of Paris seemed to them nothing but matter for art, just as, M. de Gaultier observes, some skilful craftsmen of Islam, when enrolled for the holy war, might see nothing in the slashed flesh of the dying but suggestions for the arabesque of a carpet.
In a study of Ibsen, entitled Dramatic Transub-stantiation, the author makes an altogether different application of his method. In all arts, he remarks, the artist's world is separated from the real world by the fact of transubstantiation. That is to say, that whether the artist is using words, pigments, marble, sounds, the material of his medium is not the material of that which he embodies; he always represents one substance, whether spiritual or material, through the medium of another substance. But in theatrical representation the material which the dramatist places on the stage is the very material of the real world which he is embodying; he is like a landscape painter compelled to use twigs and leaves instead of pigments; the substance remains the same. Here is the problem of the great dramatist, and

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M. de Gaultier considers that at no point has Ibsen shown himself so supreme a master of his art as in his solution of this problem, a problem, he points out, which is by no means solved by putting a thesis into a play after the manner of the younger Dumas. "I do not know what he is thinking of," says one of Ibsen's characters, "but he seems to be thinking of something different from what he is saying." This is what we see throughout all Ibsen's plays. On a higher plane, above the actual intrigue which is brought before our eyes, Ibsen represents the play of forces which are of vastly greater significance than the mere creatures of flesh and blood on the boards below. It is thus that he attains the transubstantiation of great art. M. de Gaultier seeks to interpret some of the symbolism he finds in Ibsen's plays. This symbolism, as we know, is vague, and M. de Gaultier is far too subtle a thinker to fall into the credulous mistake of supposing that he is rendering Ibsen's exact thought. But he realises that in every consummate artist's work there are threads that go out into an infinite that is beyond even the artist himself, threads which we may follow up in accordance with the measure of our insight, and the skill of our intellectual grip.
M. de Gaultier applies his philosophic method of criticism in a quite different and still more interesting way in a subsequent study of the poet Jean Lahor and the modern Buddhist renaissance. Again he shows how the fictions of Bovaryism may

work out for good. Between the ultimate ideals of the East and the West there is a radical antagonism; the Eastern ideal is that of renunciation and nirvana, the Western that of combat and ever more exuberant life. Yet from time to time, notably by the adoption of Christianity, and more recently by the revived interest in Buddhism, we European Barbarians have ardently adopted the Eastern ideals. Nietzsche in his later days thought that this Eastern influence was altogether damnable. But M. de Gaultier points out that this has not been so. The extreme violence of the Western spirit would lead to self-destruction if maintained; the ideal of renunciation which we adopted with Christianity has not been attained, but it has served to temper, in a very necessary manner, our native Western violence; it has fortified rather than enfeebled it. It has acted like those narcotics which in large doses are indeed poisons, but in moderation are beneficial sedatives. In the same way the Eastern hatred of sex and glorification of chastity really aided to re-people the Western world. Rome died for lack of men. But any moralist who at Rome had preached in a straightforward and logical manner the necessity of marriage and large families would have been unheard. The Christian monks came, and by preaching to men to trample sex under foot they really turned its energy into the channel of marriage, and indirectly and unintentionally re-peopled the failing Western world. M. de Gaultier
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delights to point out how throughout life we are led by roads that seem to lead in one direction to ends that lie in a totally opposed direction. Our Bovaryisms are fictions, but they are fictions that Life uses to lead us to goals we never desired to attain. M. de Gaultier might have taken as his motto the words with which Goethe summed up the experiences of Wilhelm Meister: "You seem to me like Saul, the son of Kish, who went forth to seek his father's asses and found a kingdom."
It is unnecessary to follow M. de Gaultier further. Enough has probably been said to show that he is a thinker whose books cannot fail to be fascinating to those who interest themselves in the philosophic criticism of life and of art. We are easily prone to direct our attention so closely to the technical details of our own little field of study that we fall into spiritual provincialism, and, like children absorbed by the search for treasure among the rocks, we do not see that the rising sea is fatally cutting us off from the great earth. We owe a debt of gratitude to writers like Jules de Gaultier who, whatever the intrinsic value of their philosophic conceptions may be, show us the tracks that run from our own small district to the larger world, and in so doing render more vital and profound even our possession of that small district.


This article was suggested by the writings of Lean Bazalgette, who died two years ago, regretted by many and best known outside France as a pioneer in making known Whitman to French readers, a work to which he devoted much of his life, and was inspired to undertake--as he told me and as I am pleased to recall--by an essay in my NEW SPIRIT. The article appeared in the WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW for October 22nd, 1903. To-day one reads it with a surprised smile. Neither inside nor outside France is the Frenchman individually or France collectively regarded as in urgent need of the gospel of strenuousness which Bazalgette was preaching thirty years ago. Indeed some nowadays think that the Frenchman has taken almost too seriously Bazalgette's injunction to "enlarge his country's activities."
OF recent years various able writers in France have proclaimed very emphatically the decadence of the so-called Latin nations and the inferiority of the French compared with the Anglo-Saxons. Among these writers M. Leon Bazalgette occupies a distinguished position both on account of the clearness and decision of his attitude and the very faithful manner in which he deals with his fellow-countrymen. M. Bazalgette first proved his right to an opinion on this question in a volume of essays, L'Esprit Nouveau, published some years ago, in which he discussed in a highly

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intelligent and sympathetic manner various modern questions of art and life. Two years ago followed the book, A quoi tient l'Infériorité Française, with which his name is most closely identified. Now in Le Problème de l'Avenir Latin he presents us with the most definite and comprehensive statement of his views on the past, present, and future of the Latin peoples generally, but more especially of France. One cannot pay a better compliment to his book than to say that it evokes reflections on the most fundamental questions concerning the precise nature of the genius of France.
M. Bazalgette's statement of the historical evolution of France is not difficult to summarise. He is well aware that there is no Latin race, and that we are only dealing with civilisations, but on this basis he distinguishes a Latin and a Germanic world, the former including all those territories which were reduced by Rome to provinces (the special case of Great Britain being reserved), by the latter those barbarous countries which refused to submit to Roman dominion ; the first group still remain Roman in religion, the second group showed its hereditary resistance to Rome by becoming Protestant. Racially, M. Bazalgette regards Gaul as substantially identical with the Germanic lands at the outset; its ultimate dissimilarity from the German nations he attributes solely to Latin domination. The fall of Imperial Rome made no difference to this domination, for

The Genius of France
Roman Christianity flowed into the channels of
the Empire, and Latin influence persisted. France made two great but unsuccessful efforts, however, to obtain that individuality which the German peoples found it more easy to preserve: the first at the Reformation, the second at the Revolution. The German nations, preserving more of the primitive strength and being nearer to Nature, have succeeded; France and other Latin nations, having been morally castrated in childhood, have remained inferior. These statements M. Bazal-gette regards as unquestionable facts.
We must be allowed, however, to point out that these facts of M. Bazalgette's are by no means so unquestionable as he seems to believe. We cannot admit that the Romans found in Gaul a people who were identical with the Germans. Caesar remarks that the manners and customs of the Gauls differed widely from those of the Germans, and it is clear from his narrative that in matters of war the Gaulish tribes situated nearest to German territory, and, therefore, most nearly related to them, were the most powerful, so that we are not entitled to assume that Roman influence rendered the Gauls weak in resistance. The rapidity of the Roman conquest shows that the difference existed at the outset, and Strabo's picture of the Gauls brings before us a people not notably and essentially different from the modern French. Nor can we agree that the Reformation in France represented a recrudescence of the

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crushed Germanic spirit. It is true that Calvin sprang from the people occupying that district which Caesar found most warlike, and which we may regard as most Teutonic, but the great Protestant district of France has always been in the south-west, the region which is least Germanic. Nor, again, can we regard the Revolution as a Germanic upheaval; among the complex movements which led up to that crisis Roman ideals and examples played a large part as well as the more Germanic influences of Rousseauism, and men of the South were as active as men of the North.
Even, however, if we could accept M. Bazal-gette's facts it would still be necessary to demur to his interpretations. It would ill become an Anglo-Saxon to speak ill of individualism, but it has to be recognised that, precious as individualism is, it is still not a quality to be sought at all costs, nor is it by any means the only constituent of high civilisation. There is no country in Europe in which racial and temperamental characteristics vary so widely as in France. France is, indeed, the microcosm of all Europe. Moreover, the mobility and the vivacity of the race have attracted attention from the first. It may not unfairly be said that so far from lacking in individuality, there is no country in which human individuality has been carried so far as in France. In the absence of those cohering elements of Roman civilisation which, to M. Bazalgette's regret, Gaul adopted so

The Genius of France
eagerly and clung to so persistently, France has always tended to suffer from the divergent individuality of its various parts. It was so before the Romans came; again, in the darkness of the ninth century, described by Salvianus, before the Church had re-established Roman influence, the same tendency to strife and dissolution is found; and, without desiring to look on the Revolution as a mere manifestation of "the red fool fury of the Seine," it is still permissible to find in it an illustration of the violence of French individuality unrestrained by the Latin spirit. It is very difficult, indeed, to see how a great and coherent civilisation could have developed from elements so highly individual, so sensitively unstable, if it had not been for the restraining influence of those Latin traditions of order and form, of fine convention, of clear reasonableness, which have served to limit --however unfortunate we may think this limiting influence to be in special cases--the splendid and various genius of France. On this matter the greatest rulers who have moulded France, the Germanic Charlemagne and the Italian Napoleon, were at one. The finest manifestations of life, indeed, always develop under restraint; we have but to look at the capsules of flower-buds or the fronds of ferns. Nature can only form her most exquisite children under the pressure of the hard and firm womb, and by destroying the ensheathing capsule we would also destroy the fruit. It is not otherwise in the world of the spirit.

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While, however, we cannot accept M. Bazalgette as either historian or philosopher without much questioning, as a moralist he is more acceptable, and it is, perhaps, as a moralist that he chiefly desires to be accepted. His polemic against Latinisation, then, becomes the appeal of the preacher of righteousness to his fellow-countrymen to make to themselves stronger bodies and more energetic minds, to work more strenuously for the enlargement of their country's activities, and to learn all that may be learnt from the example of other countries. How well able M. Bazalgette is, notwithstanding the impossibly heroic nature of some of his remedies for the evils of France, to reflect wisely on the character and fate of nations, we may observe in the concluding chapter, entitled "Optimisme," in which he clearly recognises that every nation, like every individual, has a life-history and can never hope to be always young or always vigorous. In one of the best pages in his book he recognises how, with all the defects that he finds in her, France still to-day possesses the prestige of "the great field of idealism in the world," of a consummate knowledge in the art of living, that she is the world's playground of art, a "monde-femme" with the seduction of all the things that are apart from the brutalities of rough virility, yet with the charm of extreme maturity, of long culture and tradition, with the haunting perfume of the past. These things--with others of at least equally serious import which might well

The Genius of France
have been added--are of the very essence of civilisation, and we scarcely need to waste vain lamentations over a Latinisation which has helped to achieve them.


This essay was published in the WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW
for January 15t/t, 1904.

An intelligent critic of Mr. George Bernard Shaw's Man and Superman--without doubt the author's most notable and mature book --entitled his article "The New St. Bernard." There was a certain felicity in this emphasis of the resemblance between Mr. Shaw's attitude and that of the great saint with whom he is so closely connected. The famous Christian ascetics of mediaeval times, and very notably St. Bernard, delighted to disrobe beauty of its garment of illusion; with cold hands and ironical smile they undertook the task of analysing its skin-deep fascination, and presented, for the salutary contemplation of those affected by the lust of the eyes, the vision of what seemed to them the real Woman, deprived of her skin. In the same spirit Mr Shaw--developing certain utterances in Nietzsche's Zarathustra--has sought to analyse the fascination of women as an illusion of which the reality is the future mother's search of a husband for her child; and hell for Mr. Shaw is a place where people talk about beauty and the ideal,

The Prophet Shaw
While, however, it may be admitted that there is a very real affinity between Mr. Shaw's point of view in this matter and that of the old ascetics--who, it may be remarked, were often men of keen analytic intelligence and a passionately ironic view of life--it seems doubtful whether on the whole he is most accurately classified among the saints. It is probable that he is more fittingly placed among the prophets, an allied but still distinct species. The prophet, as we may study him in his numerous manifestations during several thousand years, is usually something of an artist and something of a scientist, but he is altogether a moralist. He foresees the future, it is true--and so far the vulgar definition of the prophet is correct--but he does not necessarily foresee it accurately. The prophet is so profoundly convinced that his fellow-countrymen are on the morally wrong road that he foretells for them a goal of damnation unless they repent ; whether he has foretold the truth depends considerably on the accuracy of his diagnosis of the present ; but whether this diagnosis is right or wrong in no way interferes with his nature and function as a prophet. The prophet is a moralist, and a passionate and revolutionary moralist ; for as Renan remarked in his Histoire du Peuple d'Israël, even the old Hebrew prophets were the sort of people whom we nowadays call Socialists and Anarchists.
It has always been a great--one may even say a fatal--difficulty in the prophet's path that he is

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bound to be an artist. He is bound to be an artist because it is essential that he should have hearers, and not be merely vox clamantis in deserto. He must have listeners, and to secure them he must be charming, witty, epigrammatic, he must insinuate his anathemas against society into a stream of beautiful eloquence. Only on this condition will he be heard. But the unhappy prophet soon discovers that it is the artist who is heard, not the moralist. Jeremiah realised this with bitterness several thousand years ago: "And now am I become unto them," he complained, "as one that hath a pleasant voice and can play well on an instrument." Another prophet in a later age, St. Jerome, was wont to lament the eloquent style by which he merely charmed his readers when he sought to transfix them with the arrows of his indignation. Of Mr. Shaw it is commonly said that he is an Irishman, and therewith his hearers excuse themselves for greeting the moralist with a smile. There are not, however, so many Irishmen as is commonly supposed, and without knowing anything concerning his ancestry, one may suspect that on examination Mr. Shaw might turn out to be not so very much more Irish than another and greater "Irishman," Swift. One would be by no means surprised to find behind Mr. Shaw a long array of stolid, Puritanical, God-fearing Englishmen. It may or may not be so, but in any case, we may be sure, the prophet's reception would be the same. Mr. Shaw pines to be dragged to the

The Prophet Shaw
stake, but the public only hears the pleasant voice and the well-played instrument. "Bravo! Encore!" That is always the prophet's tragedy.
It is not alone the conflict between the artist and the moralist that brings the prophet to disaster. There is an inevitable conflict between the scientist and the moralist which also leads the prophet astray. He is bound to be in some degree a scientist, whether he would have it so or whether he would not. It is of the very essence of his function as prophet that he should possess a keen and penetrative vision into his own time, the man of science's power of analysing its conditions. His moral remedies must rest on a preliminary diagnosis which has revealed evils where to other men are no evils. To this extent the prophet is necessarily a scientist. But a dominant impulse to moralise will not work in harness with the scientific instinct, which is solely concerned with striving to see things as they are and not in hastening to declare what they ought to be. We have here therefore a contradiction at the prophet's central core. He is certainly anxious to see things as they really are, but the prophetic impulse leads him to strike at them and buffet them and cast them down from their pedestals, and in so doing it is impossible for him to see them as they really are. "We read the satires of our fathers' contemporaries," Mr. Shaw remarks, "and we think how much better we are"; he would have us read his satire of us and realise how bad we are. If,

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however, we look into the matter from a point of view other than the moralist's, we may realise that, in the one case and in the other, satire tells us very little. Those of us who have had occasion to look into, let us say, the private records and documents of the much-abused eighteenth century have learnt to discern a life very different from that which alone becomes visible in satires. There is not the slightest reason for supposing that the satires on ourselves are any more reliable than those on our fathers. The ordinary life of mankind with its everyday virtues and everyday vices is too commonplace for the purposes of literature; it is inevitably exalted, and more often degraded, in the most accomplished hands. Moliere was an artist-moralist of the highest order and his pictures of the "Precieuses" and of "Tartuffe" are counted immortal. But Moliere gives us no hint that the "Precieuses" whom he ridicules were engaged on a reforming task of the first importance, and modern investigation shows that "Tartuffe" belonged to a brotherhood which was really of unblameable rectitude. Such discriminative considerations do not, however, appeal to the prophet, and for the good of our souls he lashes us unmercifully with the scorpions of his wrath. Mr. Shaw never fails to point the finger of scorn at the rotten morality of England, but one perceives that it is always the moralist that is speaking and not the careful critic who has weighed England in the balance with other lands and decided at what

The Prophet Shaw
precise points it is that she falls short. This leads
to a certain kind of undesigned insincerity.

The scene of Man and Superman is partly laid in Spain. It is evident from many little indications that Mr. Shaw has visited Spain, at all events Granada, of all Spanish cities, be it noted, the most Anglicised. The Spanish people have been called by one who knows them well, the best people in the world, and here, one might suppose, the moralist has at last found rest and peace, but to suppose any such thing would involve ignorance of the prophet's nature. One searches Mr. Shaw's I pages in vain for any perception of the special I qualities of Spain. He describes truthfully enough the little boys at Granada who--taught by English tourists--hold out their hands automatically for coppers, but he has not met the more typical Spanish beggar, who, when you give him a penny, insists that you shall accept from him a farthing in return. We speedily realise that if Mr. Shaw should ever feel it his duty to shake from off his feet the dust of this doomed English land and settle in Spain, he would soon begin to pine for the country he had left. He would never be able to forget that, with all her shortcomings, England is still the sacred home of Fabianism, of vegetarianism, of anti-vivisectionism, of anti-vaccinationism, of who knows how many other of those "isms" so dear to the prophet's soul, and even by the waters of Seville he would hang up his harp and weep.

Views and Reviews
The moralist in the prophet must not only have a people to preach at, he must have a doctrine to preach, and here again his morality comes into conflict with his science. For many years past Mr. Shaw has zealously preached a great many social doctrines which, with growth of years and a deeper insight into the nature of man and the structure of society, have more and more seemed to him merely to touch the surface of life, and in his latest book he has plainly declared that these doctrines of his youth are little better than illusions. Now, he declares, he has no illusions on the subject of "education, progress, and so forth "; the "mere transfiguration of institutions" is but a change "from Tweedledum to Tweedledee." In this matter Mr. Shaw is true to the universal tradition of the prophet, who always tends to exhibit a growing discontent with those changes which merely touch the surface of life and an ever more passionate desire to get to the roots of it; and on these questions Mr. Shaw says many wise and profound things which we should do well to lay to heart. But in the sweeping away of illusions the prophet can never go to the bitter end, for if there were no illusions left, he would find himself in an atmosphere of quietism in which no prophet could live. However relentless his scientific realism may be, the prophet, to be a prophet, must always remain an idealist at heart.
Mr. Shaw has flung away many illusions but only
in order to entrench himself more firmly on one


The Prophet Shaw
remaining illusion, the "Superman." It is a vision that, from the time of Isaiah and earlier, has always floated before the prophet's eyes and has always proved irresistibly attractive to him: the supreme future man, the Messiah who will build up a new Earth, and whose path it is our business to make straight. There has never been a prophet who was not inflamed by that vision.
Let us be cautious, however, how we use the word "illusion" here. Mr. Shaw will have it that love--and a fortiori the virtues ascribed to human institutions--are illusions, while the "Superman" is a piece of solid reality. When the doctrine is so stated, it is necessary to point out that this verity will not resist critical analysis any better than the others, and that it is by no means difficult to flay the "Superman" even before he is born. It is enough to say in passing that, granting to Mr. Shaw that "our only hope is in evolution," the line of evolution has never been straight; in the natural course of things the successor of man would spring from a form lower than man; but as we have checked the lower forms of life at every point, we have effectually killed the "Superman." If he were to dig again into that Nietzschian mine whence he extracted the "Superman," Mr. Shaw might find another doctrine very much to the present point, the doctrine, that is to say, of the justification of "illusions" in so far as they are vitally woven into the texture of life and have aided in upholding humanity on its course. Love
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is such an "illusion," the most solid reality in all the world, and without love, hard indeed will be the struggle "to replace the man by the Superman."
It is so common for Mr. Shaw's critics to treat him as a superior bufibon that the reader may possibly be puzzled, or even shocked, when asked to place him among the prophets. But we have here no paradox. This confusion between prophet and buffoon has always been made, and for the excellent reason that underneath it there is a real fusion. No one can question the tremendous earnestness of the old Hebrew prophets, yet many of their doings hardly bear repetition to modern ears. None of our latter-day prophets has been more simple-minded and zealous than Carlyle, yet in Carlyle's writings there is no species of literary buffoonery which you will not find exemplified. In the Middle Ages indeed we may say that there was no refuge anywhere for the prophet except under the jester's cap and bells, which served him as a protection against the wild beasts he bearded in princes' courts. One way or another our Daniels have frequently had to make their homes in lions' dens, and the jester's cap has been found to exert a useful hypnotic influence on the beasts.
A prophet is not an entirely satisfactory person to the artist or to the scientist or even to the moralist. He is, as Mr. Shaw observes, "a most intensely refractory person." He is a medium through which we are forced to see the world at a

The Prophet Shaw
new and extreme angle, and we rebel at this refraction of our comfortable every-day vision. But even in our rebellion our hold of the world becomes more vital. It is no accident that the most vitally and tenaciously alive people that ever appeared on the earth has produced the most prophets.
England is poor in prophets and we need to
cherish them whenever they appear among us.



This was published in the WEEKLY CRITICAL REVIEW for
February 19th,

ALTHOUGH prophets are nowadays rare among us, Mr. Bernard Shaw is not absolutely alone. We have others, and among them not one is better worth listening to than Mr. H. G. Wells. As we have seen, a prophet may be defined as a person who is something of a scientist and something of an artist and altogether a moralist. In science, while Mr. Shaw has occupied himself with political economy, Mr. Wells has had the advantage of a training in physical and biological work ; as in art, just as Mr. Shaw has amused himself with writing plays, Mr. Wells has developed a singularly original kind of fiction, and thereby attained a wide reputation, not only in England, but also in France, being indeed the only Englishman so far assigned a place in the "Célébrités d'Aujourd'hui" series. As a moralist, Mr. Shaw is more brilliant and accomplished, for from the outset he has clearly held before him this most conspicuous part of the prophet's duty. Mr.

Another Prophet: H. G. Wells
Wells has here been somewhat shy and reticent; though he has frequently put a certain amount of morality into his fiction he has usually been anxious that it should only be visible to those who know how to find it; even a prophet must live, he seems to have said to himself; it is only within the last few years, in the maturity of his power and reputation, that he has boldly stepped into the public arena conspicuously enfolded in the prophet's mantle. With these points of resemblance in the two men there are yet very marked differences, founded on essential divergences of temperament. If the analogy of the bull-fight were not too irreverent for the occasion, it might be said that Mr. Shaw performs his prophetic functions in the spirit of the banderillero; he approaches the stolid British bull with graceful bravado, not anxious to conceal from us the tremendous personal risks he is running, he brandishes his darts before the creature's eyes, and having adroitly planted them in its hide he retires, well satisfied that he has goaded it to fury and precipitated its final destruction. Mr. Wells, on the other hand, it is evident, emulates the methods of the matador; there is no airy aggressiveness here (unless, indeed, when he takes the animal before him to stand for the British schoolmaster), his manner is simple, seemingly placable, he holds his weapon behind his back, and he seeks to make the stroke of it direct, downright, decisive. Then let the New Republic be proclaimed forthwith! It is thus that Mr.

Views and Reviews
Wells comes before us in his recent and extremely able book, Mankind in the Making.
It scarcely seems to me that this "New Re-public" of Mr. Wells's is quite a happy term. He uses it in no genuinely political sense, while its literary associations, from Plato to Mr. Mallock, do not greatly help him. The "New Republic" of Mr. Wells has no relation to any existing party or faction. The New Republican has absorbed the modern conception of evolution, and the only social and political movements in which he is interested are those that "make for sound births and sound growth." His creed is thus expressed: "We are here to get better births and a better result from the births we get; each one of us is going to set himself immediately to that, using whatever power he finds to his hand." We live in a land, as Mr. Wells puts it, into which there may be said to be a spout discharging a baby every eight seconds. All our statesmen, philanthropists, public men, parties and institutions are engaged in a struggle to deal with the stream of babies which no man can stop. "Our success or failure with that unending stream of babies is the measure of our civilisation."
The problem with which Mr. Wells seeks to deal --whether or not we care to adopt the "New Republican" label--is certainly of the first importance. To those few of us who reached this same standpoint many years back, and are trying to work towards the elucidation of the problem, it

Another Prophet: H. G. Wells
is a genuine satisfaction to find this question brought into the market-place so vigorously, so sanely, so intelligently. If a few critical comments have occurred to me as I followed Mr. Wells in his discussion of this tremendous problem, I set them down with no ungracious wish to minimise the value of his services in the cause he has undertaken to preach, which is, after all, the cause of all of us. To survey life and to reorganise it, on so broad and sweeping a scale as Mr. Wells attempts, necessarily brings him into a great many fields which have been appropriated by specialists. Mr. Wells quite realises the dangers he thus runs, but it can by no means be said that he has altogether escaped them. In this way he sometimes seems to be led into unnecessary confusions and contradictions. One may observe this in the discussion of heredity which is inevitably a main part of his theme. Mr. Francis Gallon has proposed that we should seek to improve the human race as we improve our horses and dogs, by careful breeding, in order to develop their best qualities. Mr. Wells argues, quite soundly in my opinion, that this will not work out, that we do not know what qualities we want to breed, nor how we are to get them. But Mr. Wells rushes to the other extreme when, without exactly proposing it, he suggests that there may be nothing unreasonable in mating people of insane family with "dull, stagnant, respectable people," in the hope that the mixture will turn out just right. We do certainly know,

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that as a rule mad people are most decidedly not examples of "genius out of hand," but, on the contrary, people who have got into a monotonous rut that they cannot lift themselves out of; they are far more dull and stagnant than the respectable people, and the suggested mixture is scarcely hopeful. Again, Mr. Wells argues that, before we can make progress with this question of breeding desirable qualities, we require to be able to weed out those human qualities which are "preeminently undesirable," and then he proceeds to cast contempt on the study of criminology. But criminals represent exactly those stocks in the community which possess most of the pre-eminently undesirable qualities, and if we wish to weed such qualities out we cannot study criminology too carefully. It is certainly true that many foolish things have been said in the name of criminal anthropology, but so sagacious a thinker as Mr. Wells can have no difficulty in realising that it is unnecessary to pour away the baby with the bath. Another more fundamental criticism occurs as we read Mr. Wells's pages, and one that more closely touches his prophetic mission. He appears before us as the apostle of Evolution; he states briefly, as a self-evident proposition, that "man will rise to be overman"; the New Republican is always to bear that in mind. But while such a belief is certainly an aid to an inspiring gospel of life, it can by no means be admitted that it is self-evident. On the contrary, from an evolutionary

Another Prophet: H. G. Wells
point of view, there is not the slightest reason to suppose that man will ever rise to be overman. Evolution never proceeds far in a straight line, and while it is undoubtedly true that intelligence is a factor in evolution, it is by no means true that a very high degree of intelligence is specially likely to lead to the evolution of its possessor, it may even hinder it. Many species of ants are highly intelligent and "civilised"--in some respects more so than various human peoples--yet we do not hear of the "super-ant," nor is it likely that we shall. As regards man it might be plausibly maintained that the typical Man reached his fullest and finest all-round development, as the highest zoological species, in the Stone Age some ten thousand years ago, that the Superman really began to arise with the discovery of writing, the growth of tradition and the multiplication of inventions some six or eight thousand years ago, and that we have now reached, not the beginning of the Superman but the beginning of the end of him. All we know of the "evolution" of man in historical times is that each nation in turn has had its rise and its fall, breaking like a wave on the sands of time, but no man can say that the tide itself is clearly rising; as likely as not it is at the turn, for there are not many new nations left. We only know that there is movement, a little constant oscillation, that for all we know may be backwards and forwards in equal measure. No man can definitely say that France has produced

Views and Reviews
finer persons than Greece, or England than Rome. We have all had a good conceit of ourselves; each of us in turn has believed that "we are the people." It is a belief that has helped us to make the best of ourselves.
And here we are led to the only remaining criticism of the New Republic that I have to offer. One feels throughout Mr. Wells's prophesyings a certain note of what I may perhaps venture to call without offence, parochialism. The evolution of man, if it means anything, must affect the whole species, and not a single section. Mr. Wells confines himself exclusively to the English-speaking lands, and through a great part of his book he is very much occupied with tinkering at some of our cherished English institutions. The preacher who set out by proclaiming salvation for mankind invites us to contribute to the fund for the new organ. Not only is Mr. Wells's "mankind" thus narrowly limited, he even objects to the study of other nations. Ancient languages he taboos altogether; a knowledge of modern languages he regards as "a rather irksome necessity, of little or no educational value." He rightly insists that the pressing business of education is "to widen the range of intercourse," yet he fails to see that the possession of a key to the unfamiliar thoughts and feelings of an unknown people is the one effectual method by which such an end can be attained. It is vain to say that of most good books there are more or less good translations. The educational

Another Prophet: H. G, Wells
value of a language lies less in the statements contained in its literature than in its own untranslatable atmosphere, which brings us into a new sphere of influences and places us at a fresh point of view. The contradiction in Mr. Wells's attitude is still further emphasised by the fact that he very rightly insists on the importance of a thorough knowledge of the English language and literature. Yet it may safely be said that, putting aside a very few exceptional men of genius, there have been no great masters of English who were without insight and knowledge as regards at least one or two foreign languages, while the people whose ill-treatment of English arouses Mr. Wells's indignation will rarely indeed be found to know any language but their own. It could scarcely be otherwise, for the man who can never look at his own language from the outside and estimate by comparison its exact structure and force is unlikely ever to become a master of it. Mr. Wells carries his insularity so far that he will not even admit any decency or virtue to the lower human races; the savage, he says, is simply a creature who smells and rots and starves. Mr. Wells is scornful of his "untravelled" fellow-prophets in the eighteenth century, who held up the savage for imitation. But our travelled modern prophet has been a little unfortunate in his experiences, nor was the eighteenth century by any means untravelled. It was, indeed, the opening up of the Pacific at that time and the quaint accurate narratives of

Views and Reviews
Cook, Bougainville and the other great navigators that enabled Rousseau and Diderot to use the Polynesian for the purposes of edification as effectively as Tacitus used the German.
If, however, Mr. Wells is sometimes led into unwarrantable extremes of statement, it is generally easy to see that he is so led by his moralising purpose, and that he is legitimately exercising the prophetic function. How admirable a moralist he is may be clearly seen in the chapter entitled "The Cultivation of the Imagination." Here he deals with the question of the methods by which the boy or girl should be initiated into the knowledge of all that makes manhood and womanhood. It is a delicate question, but it could not well be discussed in a more sane, wholesame, frank, and yet reticent manner. In such a discussion Mr. Wells is at his best; he enables us to realise that we are perhaps advancing beyond "that age of nasty sentiment, sham delicacy, and giggles," as he calls the Victorian era; it is here that he shows how significant a prophet he is of the twentieth century.


This paper on problems of food and drink was written at the request of the editor of THE DAILY GRAPHIC, and published on October 2nd, 1905.
THE question of diet is one of those questions which are so fundamental that we seldom realise their importance or devote much time to their serious discussion. The instinct of nutrition thus resembles the only other great instinct whose roots are equally deep within us, the instinct of reproduction. We need not, however, fall back on the familiar German witticism that what a man eats a man is (" Man ist was er isst") in order to realise the pervading influence of diet on our activities or on our happiness.
Yet there is a certain rightness in the general indifference to doctrinal statements in the matter of diet. There are no general rules that will hold good for all men. One man's meat, according to the ancient saying, is another man's poison. Indeed, the people who preach the rightness of special methods of diet usually do so on altogether non-dietary grounds. Such and such a diet, they tell us, is good, not because it suits us, but because it conforms to that of man's ape-like

Views and Reviews
ancestors, or because it is what we may conceive to have been the food of Paradise, or because it is what we may, for humanitarian or other reasons, guess that the coming and perfected man of the future will eat. No doubt, within certain limits, it will happen that what we persuade ourselves is good will actually tend to suit us; but all these are considerations which, from the strict point of view of diet, we ought to waive aside.
It must, indeed, always be remembered that there are certain facts of our nature with which all our theories and habits must be made to fit. It is the proud pre-eminence of man to be more nearly omnivorous than any other animal. No other animal is prepared to eat such a variety of things in such a variety of shapes, and to benefit so greatly by the variety. But all these things must be digested in ways that are not easily modifiable. Each special constituent of our diet --albuminous, starchy, or fatty--has its own special processes to go through with special glandular organs that are adapted to it, so that there is a large field of physiological chemistry now devoted to the study of digestion, the results so far attained in this field being well and fully set forth by the late Dr. Lockhart Gillespie in his Natural History of Digestion.
In this way it comes about that, for everybody, it is not advisable to take much liquid with solid food, since thus the digestive fluids are unduly

Fare and Welfare
diluted (for this reason much thin soup is objectionable), that bread must be masticated with much greater care than meat, since it requires saliva for its digestive transformations (it is interesting to observe how the dog, realising this in practice, will painfully chew bread, though he calmly swallows large lumps of meat or bone), that a certain amount of rest, both for muscle and brain, is always desirable immediately after a meal, or otherwise the blood stream is diverted from the main task before it at the stomach.
When, however, these and other general verities are accepted, as they must be, it remains true that diet is very largely a matter for individual experience and judgment. The digestive system is complex and extensive, it exhibits all sorts of individual variations, it is subject to the influence of habit, and anyone who carefully observes himself will find that at some point or other his experience differs from what he has always been taught to expect. In matters of detail, therefore, it is impossible to lay down rules of diet for the world at large. Whatever may be said in favour of a universal fashion in clothing--and probably it is not much--there is nothing to be said in favour of a universal fashion in diet.
One of the main points on which marked differences of opinion have been expressed is concerning the rival merits of what may be called the old English and the Continental order of meals. The first, the diminuendo system, involves

Views and Reviews
a very hearty breakfast, a substantial dinner soon after midday, a tea meal, and a light supper. The Continental, the crescendo system, begins with coffee and roll, followed by a moderately substantial meal at or before midday, and ends with a more or less elaborate dinner. It is argued in favour of the English system that the heartiest meal should be eaten in the morning, when the energies are most fresh and vigorous, and if we wish to devote ourselves entirely to eating that argument is doubtless sound. But it is precisely because the energies are freshest in the morning that it may be thought well to reserve them as much as possible for work, leaving the chief meal to the time of day when our nervous energies are no longer distracted by mental work, and many of us find that this is the order of meals which best suits us, though it is not always practicable to follow it in England. The English method of eating needs very robust digestive powers, and many of us, especially if we work with our heads and cannot always live much in the open air, greatly prefer the Continental method. I should myself be inclined to say that the best meals are to be found in Paris (I do not say all France), in some parts of Italy, and in Spain (where the cookery must not be judged by hotels which cater for the foreigner). English meals are too often dull, heavy, monotonous, unattractive, and, with all their seeming simplicity, very expensive. I write these lines during a ramble in Suffolk, and

Fare and Welfare
my fare has usually been eggs and bacon for breakfast, bread and cheese and ale for lunch, cold meat for dinner, and, under the influence of the outdoor life, the bright air, the charm of ancient inns, such fare becomes delicious. But I am well aware that in many European countries I can live, not only far more luxuriously, but far more wholesomely, for half the sum I pay here. It is a mistake to suppose that simplicity is of necessity either cheap or easy. Our old English living is the ideal for ploughboys, but in proportion as our work and our method of life strain our nerves rather than our muscles, we may wisely attempt to fashion our modes of diet somewhat more after the best Continental models, though by no means blindly or indiscriminately. Good cooking must always need a little money, a considerable amount of skill, and a very large amount of intelligence. It is not a matter of which anyone need disdain to have some knowledge.
A word as to the question of drinks. Nowadays alcohol and tea are alike fiercely assailed. But in this matter we must exercise discrimination and steer clear of the faddist. In a hot country there is no more delicious drink than water; but in a land where earth and air are too often soaked with water, of a very inferior quality, it seems less delightful. A little light French or Rhine wine, taken only with meals, is one of the best of drinks. It is important to remember that alcohol is not,
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as was formerly supposed, strictly a stimulant.
Even if it were, stimulants of all kinds are a
mistake, and, as Fere has recently shown in his
fascinating work, Travail et Plaisir, stimulation
of every kind, whatever sense it is applied to,
produces a sudden rise in capacity for work which
is always more than compensated by a rapid fall.
Alcohol, however, is really a sedative and a
narcotic, and its value is that it agreeably lulls
an over-worked or excited brain, and thus in-
directly, and to some extent even directly, aids
digestion. Good light wines are not, however,
always easy to obtain in England at a reasonable
price, and probably the best substitute, especially
in summer, is lager beer. This, as made in
Germany, is not only very slightly alcoholic, but
has been found to contain a valuable digestive
ferment, so that it may be drunk with advantage
by many who find English bottled beers almost a
poison. Spirits are better avoided, except with
some special object (when other drugs would act
as well), and the recent craze for whisky--of
which, as now manufactured, we know little or
nothing--is somewhat foolish. Coffee, in England,
is usually taken after dinner but not after lunch.
It would be better to reverse that custom, if black
coffee is only to be taken once a day, for we need
our mental activity in the afternoon more than at
night. Tea is undoubtedly greatly abused among
us in England, and there is little to be said in
favour of a tea meal, for three good meals a day


Fare and Welfare
are amply adequate. There is, however, much to be said for the habit of taking tea alone in the course of the afternoon, but it should be pure China tea, made very weak (as so little is required it is not really more expensive than Indian tea), and drunk with a slice of lemon in the Russian fashion. There is no more refreshing beverage, and it is perfectly harmless in any amount. Moreover, if little is to be drunk at meals, an opportunity is thus afforded for absorbing the fluid which is needed to purify the body, and which always has an exhilarating influence on the nervous activities. Sir Lauder Brunton has truly pointed out that in England women especially--unlike their French sisters, who better understand the art of living--usually drink far too little.
It will be seen that the general drift of these remarks is in favour of some approximation to the best Continental methods of eating and drinking--not, indeed, from the ploughboy's point of view, but certainly for people who exercise their nervous systems and are too often conscious of the process of digestion. But in the end it must again be emphasised that in this matter variety is excellent. We must be shy of the faddists--though, like the new sect of the chewers, their practices often embody a counsel of perfection which we may do well to bear in mind--and even if we hold to a very strict and narrow regime, an occasional orgy is desirable, if only on moral grounds. Our diet

Views and Reviews
ought to be the outcome of our own individual experience and observation and skill and taste. Our final ideal may well be simplicity, but in the art of eating, as in other arts, there is nothing in the world so hard to attain as simplicity.


This review of Forel's comprehensive work, DIE SEXUELLE FRAGE, afterwards translated into English, appeared in the JOURNAL OF MENTAL SCIENCE in 1906.
PROFESSOR FOREL has always taken a catholic view of the alienist's functions. Throughout his career he has occupied himself with the most various psychic phenomena, from the aptitudes of ants to the mysterious workings of the subliminal consciousness. Nor has he at any time shirked the responsibility of the physician to declare fearlessly the claim of medicine to be heard in the reasonable ordering of social institutions. Now, in old age, having come to the conclusion that every man ought to set forth his beliefs in regard to so vitally important a problem as that of sex, he has written this book, which he describes on the title-page as "a biological, psychological, hygienic, and sociological study for cultured people," and dedicated it to his wife. It is without doubt the most comprehensive, and, taking into account its many-sidedness, perhaps the ablest work which has yet appeared on the sex question. This seems to have been understood in Germany, for, although the book can

Views and Reviews
scarcely appeal to any but very serious readers, 25,000 copies have already been sold, and this fifth edition appears within a few months of the original issue.
The author is undoubtedly well equipped for the gigantic task which he has set himself. A doctor of philosophy and of law, as well as of medicine, he is able to take a very wide view of the problem he approaches, while even on the medical side his interest in human life generally saves him from approaching questions of sex too exclusively from the basis of his asylum experience; and his sound and able discussion of pathological sexuality occupies a duly subordinated place. There are certainly serious disadvantages in Professor Forel's ambitious scheme, and it cannot be said that he has escaped the defects of his methods. The various aspects of the sex problem are now highly specialized, and it is impossible even for the most versatile person to be at home in all these specialities. Thus the author disclaims all competence in the field of ethnology, and in the chapter devoted to the evolution of the forms of marriage he avowedly follows Westermarck. He could not choose a better guide; but, as Dr. Westermarck would be the first to admit, the History of Marriage was written some years ago, and needs to be considerably re-written in the light of many important contributions to knowledge which have appeared since. In any case, a mere summary of another man's work is somewhat

Forel on the Sexual Question
out of place in a book like Die Sexuelle Frage, which relies so much on its author's vigorous intellectual independence. Dr. Forel shows his independence in his attitude towards other writers on the same subject. He explains at the outset that he makes no reference to the work of others in this field, but is only concerned to set forth his own results. This attitude, however, he is unable to maintain, and it thus happens that while some authors receive an exaggerated amount of attention in his pages, others of at least equal importance are not so much as mentioned.
It is certainly in the independent personality of the author, and in his wide and mature outlook on life, that the value and interest of the book mainly lie. While it is scientific intone and temper, it can scarcely be said to bring forward any really novel contribution to scientific knowledge. The sociological section seems the most fundamental part of the book, and the author puts forward many striking and courageous suggestions in matters of social reform, more especially with reference to the influence which the growing sense of the importance of heredity and of the future of the race should exert on actual practice. Thus he does not hesitate to suggest that when a wife is sterile it should be possible for the husband, without the dissolution of the marriage, to form another recognized relationship; and he likewise argues that a healthy woman should be free to become a mother, even outside marriage, should

Views and Reviews
she so desire. He wishes to confer on women many rights and privileges which they do not now possess; the wife should be recognized as supreme as the man, her right to the children should always be regarded as stronger than the father's, and the children should take the mother's name. The author is an uncompromising champion of neo-Malthusian methods, though by no means opposed to large families where the parents are able to breed and bring up healthy children. He is a fierce antagonist of alcohol, from its influence on heredity, and he denounces the money basis of sexual relationships, not only in prostitution but in marriage, as a potent cause of the deterioration of the race. Many of his proposals, it will be seen, are likely to arouse not merely doubt, but very decided dissent. It is, however, impossible not to recognize that the book is the work of a vigorously intellectual, courageous, and practical physician who desires reforms which are by no means always so rash and hasty as a bald statement of them may suggest. He looks forward to no Utopia, and expects that in the future, as in the present, human passion and human meanness will still continue to be manifested. He believes, nevertheless, that a day will come when much that now flourishes almost unquestioned will be looked back upon in the same spirit as we look back on the burning of witches, the doings of the Inquisition, and the instruments of torture preserved in our museums. In so far as we have

Forel on the Sexual Question
aided to bring about that time our children's children will weave a wreath in our honour, "though they will wonder how it is they sprang from such a barbarous stock, and have to count so many drunkards, criminals, and blockheads among their ancestors."


This article, suggested by the trial of Harry Thaw for murder, a famous case of that day, appeared in the DAILY DISPATCH for February 20th, 1907.
IT is seldom that we see the defects of our
judicial methods so vividly illustrated as by
the trial of Harry Thaw for the murder of
Stanford White, now proceeding in New York.
The illustration is all the more effective because
of the extraordinary contrast between the con-
spicuous position which this forensic drama occu-
pies in the eyes of the whole English-speaking
world, and the unimportant bearing of the issue
on the interests of that world.

Even as a drama it lacks interest; there are no leading facts in dispute, no fascinating mystery to be probed, no spotless victim whose wrongs can be redressed. The simple question merely is whether a highly excitable and neurotic man, who has adopted an anti-social method of avenging a private grievance, should, on the one hand, be executed or, at least, imprisoned; or, on the other, be placed in a lunatic asylum, or, at least, a sanatorium. It makes very little difference to New York or the world which alternative is adopted,

Insanity and the Law
But observe how this simple problem is met. In the first place, the murderer himself, his friends, his legal advisers, and the uninvited public generally are allowed to discuss and decide--quite independently of the prisoner's real mental condition --which of these alternatives they desire to accept. The facts being indisputable, they naturally choose the plea of insanity; if they had not done so we should have heard nothing of any insanity, however real its existence.
Then a jury must be brought together, and this, even in one of the largest cities in the world, is a long and difficult matter, for both sides have to be pleased, and to have read about the case, or casually expressed an opinion on it, is a disqualification for the jury box. A whole day is needed to select two jurors, who may perhaps, be dismissed the day after as ineligible. A due amount of public time and money having thus been expended, the expert witnesses must be brought forward to prove the insanity.
In the legal sense "insanity," being based on the science of a century ago, involves a very complete degree of mental disintegration, and expert witnesses for the defence in cases of this kind are usually expected to assert, and are sometimes badgered into asserting, that the prisoner at the time of the offence was unable to know the nature and quality of his deed.
One, at least, of these ex-parte experts in the present case seems to have illustrated in a

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lamentably clear manner the weakness such evidence may reveal when a medical witness who, if left to himself, might probably have formed a sensible opinion, is forced, in the hands of a clever counsel well primed with methods of medical diagnosis, to confess ignorance of the technical details of his own profession, and to contradict his own chief statements.
The evidence in the case has, however, to be pushed beyond this more or less scientific aspect, and the past history of the parties concerned is diligently raked up and brought, clearly or dimly, into the glare of day, while the young girl who was the motive of the deed is forced to confess, into the ears of the whole world, the vulgar details of her own seduction.
At this point the judge intervenes to introduce a new aspect into the case, and excludes ladies from the court, much to their indignation, for as the whole case revolves round a woman they imagined--and not unreasonably--that it concerned women at least as much as men. But two hundred reporters (including lady reporters) are still left in court, and these amply vindicate the rights of the excluded public. The newspapers of America are filled with details of a nature, we are told, unprecedented even in American journalism.
Having secured the details they craved, the public thereupon proceeds to trample on those who have ministered to its needs. The Postmaster-General who, in the United States, is the supreme

Insanity and the Law
censor of all literature, against whom there is no appeal, is set in motion; mass meetings are called even in remote parts of the country; the clergy in the pulpits are requisitioned, not to warn their flocks of the dangers of entering the paths of sin, but to denounce the awful iniquity of too explicitly referring to those paths in print. And so it is, that by the co-operation of all persons and parties concerned or unconcerned in the question, a colossal, many-headed, and world-wide scandal is manufactured out of the simple and unimportant problem: Shall Harry Thaw be placed in a prison or a sanatorium?
If the Thaw trial had been invented by a clever advocate for the reform of judicial procedure it could scarcely have brought together in a more felicitous manner the glaring incongruities of our judicial system from a modern standpoint. The reductio ad absurdum is all the more convincing because it is quite free from the element of "miscarriage of justice" which always appeals so powerfully to popular sympathy; the question of procedure is supreme.
It must be borne in mind that, however American the details of the case may be, the American system of administering justice is substantially the English system, magnified in its various proportions by an enterprising, progressive, and emotional people. It is this magnification which makes the trial so instructive to us in England. The old English communities who devised our system found

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it adequate to their simple needs; they were not worried by technical and psychological problems, nor battered by waves of emotion proceeding from millions of their fellow-creatures. But the system that answered their needs is scarcely adequate to the conditions of a more complex civilisation, and the old machine creaks ominously when subjected to strains it was never meant to bear.
When a man chooses to avenge his real or fancied grievances by shooting his enemy at sight he is clearly acting in a lawless and anti-social manner. Whether we decide that he is sane or insane--and the dividing line is often difficult to draw--he is not fit to be at large. In such a case, under modern conditions, the ancient dilemma, "Guilty, or Not Guilty?" has no such thrilling and tragic import as it once possessed.
We are slowly reaching the conclusion that fundamentally there is but a slight difference between criminals and the insane; that our prisons and our asylums must alike become places in which certain abnormal people are confined in their own interests and those of society; not for punishment, but for treatment. Thus from the modern standpoint the alternative of prison or asylum, of "Guilty" or "Not Guilty," is becoming if not exactly an alternative of tweedledum and tweedledee, at all events, a matter which need not arouse the passionate interest of the multitude.
It by no means follows that the expert will have

Insanity and the Law
to be abolished. On the contrary, the very fact that the barriers between the great classes of "criminals" and "lunatics" are falling away makes it all the more essential to determine the precise psychological characteristics of each individual, and the treatment to which he should be subjected. This cannot be done by allowing experts to become the tools of contending parties. The function of the expert must be made subordinate to the judicial function. Doctors proverbially differ, but if we had a body of approved experts (at present anyone may pose as an expert) reporting directly to the judge or judges (for there should be more than one judge in serious criminal cases), or acting as assessors under their direction, we should have a solid, accurate, and powerful instrument on the side of justice and humanity, and the dignity and credit of our law courts would be placed on a higher level.
The practical realisation of modern conditions in these matters will have an indirect bearing on that question of publicity which has aroused so much feeling in regard to the Thaw trial. The freedom of the Press is a precious possession, and any attack on that freedom is jealously and rightly resented. But there is ceasing to be any good reason why the problem whether a high strung and morbid man is to be placed in a prison or an asylum need arouse the curiosity of millions as to every detail of his life. Such unwholesome and unreasonable curiosity is merely the outcome

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of our theatrical and antiquated forensic methods, and will die out as they are reformed.
To sum up: If our judicial methods are to be brought into line with modern knowledge and modern social standards, we need to strengthen the judicial, and reduce the forensic element in our courts. Counsel will probably tend to be diminished in number, and judges to be increased. The jury, in cases where something more than common sense and common knowledge of the world are demanded, will tend to play a more subordinate part, and experts, carefully chosen and removed from the position of partisans, will play a larger part. There is no reason why our law courts should be made cheap substitutes for the theatre and the circus, or even the prize ring.
The entertainment they may thus supply is unsatisfactory at best, and a little too dearly bought. The public energy and public emotion here expended will be free to be transferred to other problems now beginning to shape themselves to the twentieth century, problems of infinitely greater concern to the present and coming generations, and quite as fascinating as those presented in the law courts.
Whatever scandal it may have caused, the Thaw trial will not be without its uses if it helps us further along the road of judicial reform.


This letter was addressed to Miss Mary Gawthorpe on
September 18th,
1912, but I doubt if it has been printed.

I AM in receipt of your letter appealing for sympathy on behalf of Mrs. ------ and Miss ----. As one who has for over twenty-five years been an avowed advocate not only of woman's suffrage but of the complete social equality of men and women, I hold strong views regarding the attempt to arouse public sympathy on behalf of Mrs. ------and Miss ------ and thus to identify what I regard as a noble cause with vulgar criminality. It may well be that these ladies are persons of more than average high personal character. But the general public is not concerned with their private character but with their public actions. Law makes some rough attempt to distinguish the responsible offender from the irresponsible offender. But it is far too crude an instrument to distinguish motives. Why should it? An act does not become less criminal, less anti-social, less dangerous because the motives behind it happened to be good. Apart from such general considerations, there are more specific reasons why any clear-headed person--whether or not resenting the attempt of
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Mrs. ------and Miss ------ to drag a good cause into
the mud--should refuse to sign the proposed petition.

In the first place, random incendiarism is not a political crime, and has never been so regarded, any more than burglary, even when the burglar claims to be politically an anarchist. To rank such crimes among political offences would be disastrous, for there would no longer be any general sympathy with political offenders and it would soon become impossible to claim any special privilege even for legitimate political offenders.
In the second place, it is difficult to see how any objection can be raised to the severity of the sentence. If the prisoners were so densely ignorant, so feeble-minded, that their sanity were questionable there would be good ground for a revision of the sentence. But to claim that the prisoners are educated, sane, intelligent, and responsible, is surely to assert by implication that they are fit subjects for the heaviest sentence that may lawfully be imposed.
There remains the question of forcible feeding. Here you have a very strong point. Forcible feeding, there can be no doubt, is thoroughly objectionable and attended by serious risks. But to whom ought the petition against forcible feeding be addressed? Certainly not to the officials, for they are already as much opposed to forcible feeding as you or I, but to Mrs. ------ and Miss ------.
Yours faithfully,


This protest against the view that the reasonable care of the future child merely belongs to the sphere of Utopian "ideas" was published in THE NEW AGE for April 11th, 1908. The movement I championed is now, a quarter of a century later, justified by the fact that the importance of such problems has become generally recognised, and even to a considerable extent embodied in practice. In Soviet Russia, and now in Spain, the "illegitimate" child has been abolished ,' institutions, often more or less under state or municipal control, are set up in various countries of the New World and the Old to aid the prospective as well as the actual mother! while the increasing recognition of contraception and sterilisation places in the hands of the intelligent population a practical instrument of selective breeding. I would like now to add that my paper on "Eugenics and St. Valentine," here mentioned and later included in THE TASK OF SOCIAL HYGIENE, encouraged Sir Francis Gallon, as he told me, to push on his eugenic proposals, and that it was at my suggestion that he agreed to the popular edition of his INQUIRIES in Everyman's Library.
IN his "Open Letter" (New Age, March 7th)
Mr. Eden Phillpotts asks why we should not
have a state Department for the Unborn.
The Department, he suggests, would be entirely
devoted to the interests of the next generation;
it would have nothing to say concerning marriage,
but as soon as men and women set about becoming


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mothers and fathers they would have to reckon with this Department. They would repair here as they repair to a life insurance office; they would find the best scientific and sociological knowledge of the time; their personal and hereditary qualities would be investigated, and they would be informed whether the child of their union would be likely to raise the level of Man--if not help on the Superman--or whether in deliberately bringing a child into the world they might not be committing as grave a crime as if they had deliberately put a child out of the world.
Mr. Phillpotts brings forward this scheme merely as an "idea," the irresponsible suggestion of an artist in fiction, at the best as a new plank for a Utopian platform resting on the air. I hoped that someone would come forward to protest. As no better qualified person has done so, I trust I may be allowed to point out that selective control in the breeding of the future generaton is a proposal which, far from resting on the air, definitely lies on our horizon. It slowly began to take shape throughout the nineteenth century, and during the few years of the present century the pace of our progress towards it has been considerably accelerated.
In modern times--for it is needless to go back to the imaginary Republic of Plato or the real Republic of Sparta--the question of controlling the future generation, or even of socially safeguarding the young of the present generation,

The Care of the Unborn
never presents itself until industrial conditions of life predominate over agricultural conditions. In States that are fundamentally agricultural the production of children occurs automatically, almost involuntarily, without question or anxious comment. There is always food for another mouth, and another "hand" is always welcome; children are "sent by God." It is true that often, as in Russia and Austria-Hungary to-day, they die off with almost the same facility as they are born; but since the conditions that kill them are to superficial observation natural conditions, there is no obvious call for active interference.
All this is altered when agricultural life gives place to industrial life, and a factory system takes away men and women alike into its service, but ignores entirely the question of the production of new men and women. Home life is then reduced to its barest and sordidest minimum; reproduction, still left to chance, is now carried out under actively unfavourable influences; and children, abandoned at birth to the bottle administered by the hand of strangers, either die with greater rapidity even than in less prosperous agricultural communities (compare the high infantile mortality of England with the low infantile mortality of Ireland), or else grow up stunted, defective, nervously unstable.
That is a state of things which soon begins to attract attention, because, unlike earlier conditions, it is quite obviously unnatural. It was the

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origin of a series of more or less inadequate measures, beginning during the Victorian period, and still continuing, which were once described as "humanitarian," because they were looked upon as a sort of charity to outcasts, and not as necessary measures of social hygiene carried out by a community in its own interests. Thus, it is that we acquired our farcical factory legislation, which, in order to salve wounded humanitarian feelings, ordained, for instance, that women shall rest for four weeks after confinement and yet provided not a penny for their support during that period of enforced rest, the result being that employer and employee every day tacitly conspire to break the law and deteriorate the new generation, while the State sanctimoniously winks. In Germany this matter of rest after confinement is covered by the general compulsory insurance scheme. In France a private company has even set a superb example to the State; and at the famous Creuzot works the expectant mother not only rests during the latter half of pregnancy, but has her salary raised; she suckles her infant, and must produce a medical certificate of fitness before returning to work. The results are said to be admirable as regards both mother and infant.
The question of suckling is of primary importance from several points of view, not least because the mortality of bottle-fed infants is usually double that of breast-fed infants, which is why the enterprising town of Leipzig has lately resolved to

The Care of the Unborn
subsidize those of its mothers who suckle their babies. In England an evil state of things has sometimes been favoured by the well-meant efforts of local authorities to facilitate the supply of cow's milk. The young English working man, it has been said, nowadays often only marries a part of a woman, the other part being in a chemist's shop window in the shape of a glass feeding-bottle; she not only fails to suckle her child, but she is becoming unable to do so. Thus it is that we have to-day in England an immense infantile mortality, which shows no real tendency to decrease although our general mortality is decreasing, and although half of it is admitted by the best authorities to be easily preventible. It is a problem we are beginning to grow alive to, as is shown by the recent National Conference on Infant Mortality, as well as by the excellent Schools for Mothers now springing up among us, mainly suggested by the "Consultations de Nourissons" founded by Budin in Paris in 1892.
It is not enough, however, to realize the risks of the child after birth; the problem is soon pushed farther back, and we understand that it is just as necessary to watch over the child before birth, for while it is still in its mother's womb its fate may be determined. Here we in England have as yet done nothing. We may say in the words of Bouchacourt that among us "the dregs of the human species--the blind, the deaf-mute, the degenerate, the imbecile, the epileptic--are

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better protected than pregnant women." It is from France that the finest inspirations and initiations come. To Budin, who lately died, and Pinard who are among the chief pioneers of human progress in our time, we owe not only a more systematic care for the infant, but the inception of the new movement for the care of the unborn child and a precise knowledge of the reasons which make that necessary. Masses of data have now come into existence showing that it is only by resting during the later months of pregnancy that a woman can produce a fully-developed child, and that without such rest confinement tends to occur prematurely, such prematurity being the chief cause of the enormous infantile mortality. In England, it is stated by Ballantyne, the greatest British authority, that 20 to over 40 per cent, of all children born are premature, the estimate varying according to the standard of maturity adopted. In France there is now an active demand for the State recognition of this need of rest during the last three months or, at the very least, four weeks, of pregnancy, and during the past twenty years also a number of excellently managed municipal Asiles have been established in which pregnant women--married and unmarried on a footing of complete equality--may secure this necessary rest, while movements are also on foot to furnish advice to pregnant women at home and to relieve them in their household work. One little spot in France--Villiers-le-Duc

The Care of the Unborn
--has acquired an almost classic fame. In this village of the Cote d'Or any woman may claim support during pregnancy, as well as the gratuitous services of doctor and midwife, the result being that both infant and maternal mortality have been almost abolished. In England we are too "practical" for so thorough a recognition as this of the fact that prevention is better than cure. Yet Villiers-le-Duc has been a source of inspiration even for England, for here it was that Mr. Broad-bent, the Mayor of Huddersfield, came and resolved to establish what has since become generally known as the Huddersfield system, the basis of the Notification of Births Act which came into force this year. That Act, with all its imperfections and its merely permissive character, is yet I the most important event which has happened in this country for a long time past. It represents the recognition of the fact that the infant, even from the moment of birth, must be the object of the State's care, and that recognition cannot fail to be very fruitful in consequences.
The care for the child, however, the recognition of the infant, the demand of rest for the pregnant and suckling woman--these are steps which, so far from covering all the ground, only seem to lead us slowly but surely back to the yet more fundamental question of conception. A wise care for the welfare of the products of conception leads to care in the causation of conception. That, indeed, is a step that began to be taken a very

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long time back, and it is idle now for American Presidents or English Bishops to discuss whether it is good or bad. It will be time to discuss the wisdom of increasing our diminished output of babies when we have learnt how to deal with those we have. It is quite certain that the limitation of offspring--voluntary or involuntary--has always been bound up with all human progress; indeed, one may say with all zoological progress. The higher the organism the lower the offspring.
But to be on a sound basis, human or zoological, the progeny diminished in quantity must be increased in quality. Unfortunately, that is not what is happening with our own diminished output of babies. On the contrary, the quality has diminished as much as the quantity. That was inevitable, for the decrease has not been caused by any deliberate selection of the best parents or the best conditions for parenthood, but has rather been effected by the restraint of the better elements in the community.
It has thus happened that along a number of lines--in England, in France, in Germany--attention is being more and more directed to that great central problem of human race-building: How can we compensate the inevitably diminished quantity of babies by raising their quality? Mr. Philipotts is by no means alone in asking why it is that, though even savages carefully weed their gardens, we not only tolerate our weeds, but even put them under glass.

The Care of the Unborn
In 1883 Francis Galton--who, as befits one who devoted himself to the interests of future generations, is still alive and active among us, the sole survivor of the intellectual giants of his time--put forward a book entitled Inquiries into Human Faculty and Its Development, in which, summarising his own earlier investigations, he dealt with "various topics more or less connected with that of the cultivation of the race, or, as we might call it, with ' eugenic ' questions--that is, with questions bearing on what is termed in Greek, eugenes, good in stock, hereditarily endowed with noble qualities."1
For some years eugenics was generally regarded less as a subject of supreme social importance than as a butt for witticism; at the best it seemed an amiable scientific fad. That is no longer the case. To-day Galton's work is the recognised starting-point of a new movement in favour of Nalional Eugenics; elaborale scienlific invesligations are being carried on in order to enlarge our defective knowledge of the laws of heredity; ihe University of London officially recognises ihe subject of eugenics, and ihe versalile Professor Karl Pearson is at the head of a laboratory for exploring that great field of Biometrics which is definitely based on ihe life-work of Galton. During ihe past few weeks, also, the Eugenics Education Sociely has been established wilh ihe double
1 This book has lately been reprinted in the invaluable "Everyman's


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object of increasing popular knowledge and interest in this field and of promoting the ends which make for the better breeding of the race.
At the same time there has been of recent years a real change of attitude towards this question on the part of the general public. As Dr. Clouston, the distinguished Edinburgh alienist, lately remarked, nowadays people not only ask medical advice about marriage and procreation, but they even follow it, and many physicians can bear similar testimony. When any reasonable exposition of eugenic principles is now put forward it is received not with amusement, but with serious and sympathetic attention.1 We are all agreed now that it is necessary, as Mr. Phillpotts puts it, to "turn off the bad blood at the meter," and the only question is as to how that may best be effected. Greater technical knowledge is, for one thing, needed, but also a higher general standard of individual responsibility, for it is idle yet, and altogether premature, to clamour for compulsion. In educating the community, as by helping on the existing movements for the realisation of eugenic ideals, all may assist to bring us nearer to that conscious care for the race which Mr. Gallon believes will be the religion of the future.
What I have here sought to show is that Mr. Phillpotts' scheme is not an idea in the air which
1 I recall, for instance, the comments aroused in the Press by an article of my own on "Eugenics and St. Valentine," published in the Nineteenth Century two years ago.

The Care of the Unborn
may be discussed in a merely academical fashion. It is the inevitable outcome of a movement which, on the social as well as on the scientific side, has been slowly prepared during a hundred years. It is not indeed the immediately next step. We have first to grapple more closely with the problem of the neglected infant and the ignorant and overworked pregnant and suckling woman, for it is idle to spend care on good breeding if the results of our care are to be flung to destruction at or before birth. But when that problem is solved, the eugenical problem is immediately upon us. We may help its progress; we cannot stop it, though we may hinder it. We hinder it when we fritter away so much time and energy in chattering about the education of children and about what religion they shall be taught. Let them be taught the religion of the Bantu or the Eskimo, of New Guinea or of Central Brazil, whatever it is we may be reasonably sure they will be usually sickened of it for life. Education has been put at the beginning, when it ought to liave been put at the end. It matters comparatively little what sort of education we give children; the primary matter is what sort of children we have got to educate. That is the most fundamental of questions. It lies deeper even than the great question of Socialism versus Individualism, and indeed touches a foundation that is common to both. The best organised social system is only a house of cards if it cannot be constructed with sound individuals,

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and no individualism worth the name is possible unless a sound social organisation permits the breeding of individuals who count. On this plane Socialism and Individualism move in the same circle.


This essay appeared in the NEW STATESMAN for May 30th 1914. As will be seen, I felt that the novelist's work was losing its original fine quality; from that date I ceased to take an interest in it, however fit it may have been for the international popular audience it was gaining. The literary disparagement of Blasco Ibanez has indeed been widespread and carried much too far, since it has led to a neglect of his early work. Moreover, whatever may be said of him as an artist, he remains a splendid representative of the Spanish spirit, and so fearless a champion of the Revolution he was not destined to see, that he was compelled to spend the last years of his life outside his own country. Now that his ideals have been realised, his memory will doubtless receive, in Spain at all events, the honour due to him.
IT is only recently that the novels, even the name, of Blasco Ibanez became known to English readers. A few years ago the list was long of his translated books in more than half a dozen languages, not one of them in English. Now that The Cathedral, Sonnica, The Blood of the Arena, have been published in England and America, and that other translations are announced, it can no longer be said that the best known and the most typically Spanish novelist of to-day is only unknown to English readers.

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Even the reader of these translations, however. --well as they are executed--may easily receive an inadequate idea of the scope and nature of this novelist's work. An author's latest works, usually the first to be translated, are not always the finest examples of his quality. Moreover, every novelist who is marked by vital exuberance must be considered to some extent in the mass before he can be appreciated. Blasco Ibanez has published nearly twenty volumes in twenty years, and it is necessary to take a survey of many of these to gain a fair notion of his quality and position. He began as a regional novelist with stories of the tragic and laborious life of the Valencian peasantry among whom he had lived from childhood. Arroz y Tartana, Entre Naranjos, Canas y Barro, Flor de Maya, La Barraca---none of them published in English--belong to this group. These books are vivid and pungent; they spring naturally out of the writer's experience; they describe persons evidently studied from life and they bring before us in detail a peculiar picture of rural life. They perhaps remain the best books Blasco Ibanez has written. The vision is narrower than in any of his later books, but its depths and the richness of the sympathy behind it gives them universal interest. One may refer, for instance, to La Barraca, published in 1898. This is not only, as it has been called, the finest masterpiece among Spanish regional novels. The struggle of man with the soil, the devotion of the peasant to that

Blasco Ibanez
soil, the tragic contest between the tenant and the landlord, have never, probably, been so vehemently and poignantly presented in any literature. As a contrast to the monotonous intensity of La Barraca may be placed Canas y Barro, published four years later, a picture of life in the malarious rice-fields of the Valencian Lake Albufera, and of the varied types to be found among the workers in this region.
By 1903 Blasco Ibanez had established his fame as a novelist and at the same time exhausted his personal impressions of Valencia. He now sought to give expression to his spirit of social revolt by studying special aspects of life in Spain generally. We thus have what are termed the "novels of rebellion," including La Catedral, La Bodega and La Horda, all fighting books, manuals of revolutionary propaganda rather than serene works of art.
La Catedral, in which a struggle between the renovating spirit of modern anarchism and the decaying spirit of conservatism is played out in the cloisters of Toledo Cathedral, is the most translated of all the novelist's books and the first to appear in English, but it is perhaps the least satisfactory. That at all events is its author's opinion; it is too heavy, he confided to a friend, and there is too much doctrine. It is difficult to dispute this verdict. La Bodega, a book of similar method, may be regarded as a better example of this group; it presents a vivid picture of
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the wine industry at Jerez and the invasion into this sphere of the modern labour spirit; the Anarchist Salvoechea is here introduced under a pseudonym as a kind of modern Christ. In El Intruso, which has as its background the iron mines and manu-facturies of Bilbao, another and more modern phase of Spanish religion is brought forward and the power of the Jesuit set forth. Finally, La Horda, the last novel of this group, deals with the parish life of the slums of Madrid.
The later novels of Blasco Ibanez, beginning with La Maja Desnuda in 1906, are freer and more varied in character; they are more deliberately analytical and psychological than the books of the first period, more artistically impartial than those of the second class. The novelist has become more agile and more self-conscious, to some of us, perhaps, less interesting. In most of these books the author chooses a special panorama and a definite theme which he analyses disinterestedly and indeed often admirably. Thus we have Sangre y Arena in which bull-fighting is presented as a problem in the national life of Spain. Again, we have Los Muertos Mandan (shortly to be published as The Tyranny of the Ancestors), in which, on the background of the lovely Balearic Islands, is presented the great question of tradition, the iron rule of the dead over the living. It is doubtless one of the most vivid and masterly of the novelist's works. Recently Blasco Ibanez, a great traveller, has

Jilasco Ibanez
been visiting South America and studying the new aspects of life there presented. They form the subject of his most recent books.
The man behind these books is no ordinary man of letters. He is a personality, and that fact it is which imparts so much more interest to his work than its purely literary qualities--though these are not negligible--would warrant. The abounding vitality and energy of the books is, we feel, a reflection of the aboundingly vital and energetic person behind them.
Vicente Blasco Ibanez was born in Valencia in 1867 of parents who kept a modest provision-shop. More remotely the family sprang from Aragon, and it is certainly the bold, obstinate, firm-fibred Celtiberian stock of that region which we feel predominantly in this man's work. The young Vicente was a turbulent youth, intelligent but rebellious to discipline, and more fond of sport than of books. He began life as a law student and speedily acquired a profound distaste for law and for lawyers, whom he regards as among the chief agents of social evil. At seventeen he finally abandoned the law, and ran away to Madrid, to become a journalist. A year later he wrote a revolutionary sonnet against the Government and for this offence was sent to prison for six months. Such treatment was not calculated to exert a soothing influence on a youth of Vicente's

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temper. The next years were full of agitation, of republican propaganda, and of conflicts with law and authority. In 1890, having been condemned to prison for speeches and agitation against the Conservative Government of the day, Blasco thought it best to flee to Paris, about which he wrote a book. A few years later he again fled, hurriedly, in a fisherman's boat, to Italy, on account of a collision between the people and the police in the agitation over the Cuban war. On his too reckless return he was seized by the police, handcuffed, and taken to Barcelona, then under martial law, and condemned by the Council of War to a convict prison. The tribunal neglected, however, to deprive him of civil rights, and in a few months--to the astonishment of all Spain--the city of Valencia, which he had done so much to transform into a great revolutionary centre, liberated him from prison by sending him to Parliament as their deputy. As a counterblast to this anti-clerical declaration, the clergy resolved on a demonstration at Valencia by choosing that port for the embarcation of a national pilgrimage to Rome. The pilgrims duly arrived at the quays under the superintendence of ten bishops, but Blasco Ibanez and a few faithful followers were prepared, and to the horror of the faithful he ordered the ten prelates to be flung into the sea, whence they were speedily and safely rescued in small boats which the revolutionary leader (this is a characteristically Spanish trait) had humanely

Blasco Ibanez
placed in readiness. Such at least is the recorded story.
At this time Blasco Ibanez was approaching the age of thirty and was yet scarcely known as a novelist. As a youth he had indeed published a story of wild adventure, which he afterwards bought up and destroyed. He reached the novel indirectly, through journalism. As a deputy he desired to spread his ideas through Spain, and therefore founded a newspaper, El Pueblo, into which he threw so much energy that it rapidly acquired wide influence. A feuilleton was, however, indispensable, and as there was no capital wherewith to pay a novelist, the editor resolved to write his own feuilleton. It was in this way that all the earlier novels--the group of vivid pictures of Valencian life based on early personal impressions --first appeared, attracting little attention even when published separately until the French discovered and translated La Barraca under the title of Terres Maudites. Soon afterwards Blasco Ibanez had become a famous novelist whose reputation was growing world-wide. He was henceforth content to devote his energies exclusively to the work of novel-writing.
How immense this man's energies are may be sufficiently divined even from this brief sketch of his early life. We may see him characteristically in the full-length portrait (exhibited in London a few years ago) by another famous Valencian, Sorolla, whose work, in a different medium, has

Views and Reviews
so much of the same quality as his friend the novelist's. Here we see Blasco Ibanez in the full vigour of maturity. He stands facing the spectator with a cigarette between his fingers, a grizzled, solid figure with high receding domed forehead, slight beard and moustache, a strong, sagacious man, assured of his power, who is taking your measure, calmly, critically, self-confidently, with a jovial, humorous smile. He is, you perceive, a man planted firmly on the earth, with a close grip of the material things of life, a man of great appetites to match his great energies. We may miss here any delicate sense of the spiritual refinements of life or the subtleties of the soul. But we are unmistakably aware of a man with a very vivid sense of humanity, with a powerful aptitude for human adventure, human passion, human justice, even human idealism. That is Blasco Ibanez.
Blasco Ibanez has sometimes been called the Spanish Zola. It is certain that the French novelist has influenced the later development of the Spanish novelist and that in general methods of approaching their art there are points of resemblance between the two writers. Yet the differences are fundamental. Zola was a man of the study who made novel-writing his life-work from the outset; for every book he patiently accumulated immense masses of notes (in which, as he

Blasco Ibanez
himself admitted, he sometimes lost himself), and in a business-like and methodical manner he wove those notes into books of uniform and often impressive pattern, which becomes the more impressive because it was inspired by a novel doctrine of scientific realism. Nothing of this in the Spanish writer. However revolutionary his social and political outlook may be, he is not revolutionary in methods of art; he has scarcely even mastered the traditional methods; the habits of journalism have taken strong hold of him and his more severe Spanish critics deplore the frequent looseness and inaccuracy of his style. There are passages of splendid lyrical rhapsody, and there are often the marks of a fine and bold artist in the construction of a story or the presentation of a character, but in the accomplished use of the beautiful Castilian tongue Blasco Ibanez is surpassed by many a young Spanish writer of to-day. Nor has he any of Zola's methodical fervour of laborious documentation. In his early novels he adopted the happy method of drawing on his own vivid early memories of Valencian life and character. More recently his method has been to soak hmiself, swiftly and completely but for the most part very briefly, in the life he proposes to depict. A week may suffice for this, and the novel itself may be written in a couple of months. Thus for writing Sangre y Arena it sufficed him to visit Seville in the company of a famous matador, and the preparation for Los Muertos Mandan was a boating expedition

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round the Balearic coast, in the course of which he was overtaken by a storm, and forced to shelter on an islet where he remained for fourteen hours without food and soaked to the skin. Nor are the notes for his books written down; he relies exclusively on his prodigious memory and his intense power of visualizing everything that impresses him. His robust and impatient temperament enables him to work at very high pressure, oblivious of every attempt to interrupt him, even for eighteen hours at a stretch, sometimes singing as he writes, for he is a passionate melomaniac whose idols are Beethoven and Wagner. It is clear that a worker with such methods has little need of sleep; he is, however, a great eater, and feels, indeed, Zamacois tells us, a great contempt for people who cannot eat well; but when he is approaching the end of a novel all such physical needs are disregarded; he writes on feverishly, almost in a state of somnambulism, even, if need be, for thirty hours, until the book is completed, when it is perhaps sent to the printers unread, to be corrected in proof.
Such is the figure behind these powerful and impetuous books which have made so much noise in the world. It is the figure of a typical representative of the Spanish spirit, which has sometimes shown itself more refined and distinguished, but is ever of very firm fibre, of well-tempered individuality. And these books are not merely faint reflections of the man

Blasco Ibanez
who has so carelessly flung them at the world; they are the most interesting documents we can easily find to throw light on the social and industrial questions which are stirring Spain to-day.


The following review of Edward Carpenter's book of this name appeared in the OCCULT REVIEW in 1914.
IN a previous book, The Intermediate Sex, Mr. Edward Carpenter set forth the claim for recognition of persons of homosexual and bisexual constitution, as entitled to a fitting place and sphere of usefulness in the general scheme of society. It cannot be said that such a plea is without justification, for careful investigation in various countries has shown that nearly everywhere homosexual persons constitute over 1 per cent, of the population, and bisexual persons at least 4 per cent.; so that in our own country alone the number of persons of this type probably run into millions. Moreover, they are found in all social and intellectual classes, not only in the lowest, but also in the highest.
In the present volume Mr. Carpenter takes up a special aspect of the same subject, and deals with it in detail, which was not possible in the more comprehensive earlier book. He seeks to investigate the part played in religion and in warfare by the "Intermediate" types of "Primitive" days.

"The Intermediate Types Among Primitive Folk"
A verbal criticism intrudes itself, indeed, as the author himself admits, at the outset. The vague term "Intermediate," while it may fairly be applied to many sexual inverts, will not satisfactorily cover them all, for not all male inverts approximate to the feminine type, nor all female inverts to the masculine; some even, Carp