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have given it as our opinion that, in spite of the assurances from correspondents in Japan, in spite of the fact that the Japanese have held funeral rites for a specified number of departed souls, we cannot believe that an organisation so crafty and careful in its dissemination of military news would have gratuitously handed to its enemy a correct statement of its losses. We will refer the reader, who may be sceptical of the truth of our assertions, to the quotation which we have used from the Japanese officer who was with Nogi on Kuropatkin's right flank. You will note that he states that the battalions in his division were reduced to the strength of companies. There is one point that we notice in a consecutive study of Japan's methods of conducting operations which is here worthy of comment. It is the remarkable manner in which their staff manages to equally distribute the stress of battle through every unit in the army. Therefore we may take it as granted that the officer whom we have already quoted did not belong to a division which during the battle of Mukden was engaged to a degree out of proportion to other units in the entire army. This reflection, coupled with the verbatim expression of opinion of expert European soldiers who were present at the battle, leads us to believe that the success at Mukden cost the Japanese in casualties at least as much as it cost their enemy.
On March 10 the Japanese officially entered Mukden. On the same date Kawamura, instead of falling from the skies and overwhelming Linievitch, entered Fu-shun. With the occupation of Mukden, the ancient capital of the Manchu dynasty, it may be said that the military campaign ended, since the recent conclusion of peace has rendered it impossible either for the Russians to reestablish their military prestige or for the Japanese to add to their laurels on land. This being the case, it will not be necessary to follow in much detail the events which followed the battle of Mukden. On March 16 the Japanese, after one unsuccessful attempt, occupied Tieling, the Russians having evacuated before them. On the following day Kuropatkin was relieved of his command, and his place taken by General Linievitch, and on March 21 the Japanese occupied Chang-tu-fu. This latter occupation, to all military intents and purposes, marks the limit of the Japanese military occupation in Manchuria.
From the moment that they lost Mukden, the whole of the Russian hopes for the time being centred in their fleet, which, under Rojdestvensky, had arrived on March 17 at Nossé Bay. The history of this fleet and its disastrous voyage to the Far East, culminating with its total annihilation in the Straits of Tsushima, have already been dealt with in these pages.
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IT may be accepted as a be well fitted to hold the general truth that the states- highest office, whenever the man, like the poet, is born and opportunity should arrive. not made. When Wolsey left Born in 1759, that year of Ipswich for Oxford, he had stress and glory, which saw neither thought nor prospect the triumph of our English of governing his country and arms in Canada, which boasted his king. It was native genius, the victories of Clive and Coote not training, which placed in India, which witnessed the Oliver Cromwell at the head splendid achievement of Hawke of affairs; and Chatham him- in Quiberon Bay, William Pitt self was a cornet of horse grew up an ardent, acquisitive before he found his true career boy, in an atmosphere of learnin politics. But William Pitt ing and patriotism. Not even the Younger was made as well ill-health availed to check his as born a Minister. From progress, and he gained so easy his earliest childhood he was a mastery over Greek and educated to achieve a certain Latin that, in the words of end, to fulfil a definite purpose. his earliest tutor, "he never His natural gifts for literature seemed to learn, but only to and politics were assiduously recollect." The method which encouraged by his ambitious his father persuaded him to father, who was determined follow in his studies was far that his favourite son should in advance of his time. He VOL. CLXXVIII.-NO. MLXXXI.
read the classics, not as exercises in philology, but as examples of the greatest poetry and the loftiest eloquence; and the epics and histories of old were as real to him, from his youth upwards, as they were to Montaigne. But in his father's eyes it was not enough for the boy to understand Virgil and Thucydides; he must use their works as a means to acquire readiness of speech and a quick faculty of selection in his own tongue; and Lord Chatham would urge him to turn passages from whatever book he was studying into English, without premeditation. That he might learn to declaim, he was set to recite pages from Milton and Shakespeare; and, when yet a child, he was trained to act upon the stage of the drawingroom, though all the training in the world could never endue him with his father's histrionic talent. It is not strange, therefore, that his first, and almost his only, experiment in literature was a tragedy in five acts, called "Laurentius, King of Clarinium"; nor was he content to write it - he played a part and spoke the prologue. The earliest attempts of great men to express themselves in words are not infrequently prophetic of their careers. The essay which Napoleon wrote at school is an eloquent denunciation of ambition, "a violent, unreflecting madness"; and Pitt's play, composed when he was thirteen years of age, seems to have been written with an eye fixed intently upon the future.
"The tragedy is bad, of course," said Lord Macaulay, who was fortunate enough to have seen it, "but not worse than the tragedies of Hayley. This piece is still preserved at Chevening, and is in some respects highly curious. There is no love. The whole plot is political; and it is remarkable that the interest, such as it is, turns on a contest about a regency. On one side is a faithful servant of the Crown; on the other an ambitious and unprincipled conspirator. At length the King, who had been missing, reappears, resumes his power, and rewards the faithful defender of his rights. A reader who should judge only by internal evidence, would have no hesitation in pronouncing that the play was written by some Pittite poetaster, at the time of the rejoicing for the recovery of George the Third in 1789." In a brief fifteen years Pitt was asked to enact the same play in grim earnest, and it is among the strangest ironies of history that he thus rehearsed in sport a most difficult crisis of his life.
William Pitt was never 8 boy, but had he been, the stern instruction of his father would surely have checked the careless rapture of boyhood. It seems to have been part of Chatham's design to treat him always as a grown man. When he was no more than eleven we find Chatham sending him a letter by Junius, "as a specimen of oratory"; and with the same purpose he recommended him to study the works of Barrow, a copious author by whose ex
ample the father was far better fitted by nature to profit than the son. It is not remarkable, therefore, that when Pitt was entered at Pembroke Hall in 1773 he was superior in wisdom and attainments to the most of his older contemporaries. A child in years, he was already a man in judgment, and prepared to take advantage of all the scholarship which the University could afford. What manner of boy he was his father has himself set down in a letter addressed to Mr Turner, senior tutor of Pembroke Hall, which in no way exaggerates Pitt's marvellous qualities. It is dated at Burton Pynsent, October 3, 1773, and thus it runs :
Apprehensions of gout, about this Season, forbid my undertaking a journey to Cambridge with my Son. I regret this more particularly, as it deprives me of an occasion of being introduced to your Personal Acquaintance, and that of the gentlemen of your Society, a loss, I shall much wish to repair, at some other time. Mr Wilson, whose admirable instruction and affectionate
Care have brought my Son, early, to receive such further advantages, as he cannot fail to find, under your eye, will present Him to you. He is of a tender age, and of a health not yet firm enough to be indulged, to the full, in the strong desire he has to acquire useful knowledge. An ingenious mind and docility of temper will, I know, render him conformable to your discipline, in all points. Too young for the irregularities of a man, I trust he will not, on the other
hand, prove troublesome by the Puerile sallies of a Boy. Such as he is, I am happy to place him at Pembroke; and I need not say how much of his Parents' Hearts goes along with him.-I am, with great esteem and
regard, Sir, your most faithful and
most obedient humble servant,
"Such as he is," says his father, and he was such as no other boy was before or since has been. Precocity in the
arts which are nourished at the fire of genius, is less uncommon than in those pursuits whose success demands study and patience. We are not
surprised that Pope lisped in numbers; we confess our amazement that Rancé should have published an edition of Anacreon at twelve years of age. Pitt's achievement resembles Rancé's more nearly than Pope's. At fourteen he was already something of a scholar, and very much of a politician. During the seven years which he spent at Cambridge, he devoted himself to the study of the Classics with an ardour which not even illhealth could abate. He read everything in Greek or Latin that he could lay hands upon, and he translated Lycophon at first sight with an ease, says Pretyman, "which, if I had not witnessed it, I should have thought beyond the compass of human intellect." The only encouragement that ever he needed was an encouragement to idleness, and this his father gave him in his own magniloquent style. "All you want at present,' wrote he, "is quiet; with this, if your ardour ἀριστεύειν can be kept in till make noise enough, you are stronger, you will How happy the task, my noble, amiable boy, to caution you only against pursuing too much all those liberal and praiseworthy things, to which less happy natures are perpetually
to be spurred and driven!... You have time to spare; consider there is but the Encyclopedia, and when you have mastered all that what will remain? You will want, like Alexander, another world to conquer." It was not long, indeed, before he wanted this other world, and he found it, where his father had bade him seek, in politics.
But it was not merely for their own sakes that Pitt devoted himself to the study of Greek and Latin. In his time the Classics were regarded as the highway to statesmanship. The historians and orators of Athens and Rome were wisely thought to contain the best inspiration for the modern politician, and, since no speech was perfect without a classical quotation, Virgil and Horace were added to the simple curriculum. In the latter half of the eighteenth century few men rose to eminence in Parliament who were not deeply tinctured with learning. The third Duke of Grafton found a yet better solace in the Classics than in the society of Nancy Parsons. Fox beguiled the enforced leisure of opposition by reading Porson's editions of Euripides' "Orestes" and "Hecuba." Our universities knew no more elegant or more finely polished scholar than Lord Mornington.1 And William Pitt was in no way inferior to the best of his con
temporaries. Yet party spirit, eager to conceal the truth, has declared that Pitt was ill-versed in Greek and Latin. The evidence on the other side is overwhelming, and the libel may fittingly be refuted here. "Lord Grenville (himself an excellent Grecian) has often told me," wrote Wellesley to Croker, "that he considered Mr Pitt to be the best Greek scholar (not professional) of his time. Mr Pitt was perfect master of Demosthenes, of whose orations I have repeatedly heard him recite whole pages, dwelling on all the grand bursts of thunder and lightning." Pretyman, whose testimony on such a point is above suspicion, is in perfect agreement with Wellesley. He tells us that Pitt had an intuitive quickness in the interpretation of difficult passages. "I am persuaded,” said he, "if a play of Menander or Eschylus, or an ode of Pindar, had been suddenly found, he would have understood it as soon as any professed scholar." That which his friends assert receives an efficient corroboration from his own speeches; and though the exigent demands of practical life perforce diminished Pitt's interest in literature, he carried away from Cambridge a better knowledge of Greek and Latin than belonged to many whose scholarship was their career, and he could meet even such redoubtable opponents as Charles
1 Among the papers preserved at Dropmore is a letter from Lord Mornington to William Grenville, perfectly characteristic of the men and the time. "I am glad you have returned to Latin and Greek," writes Mornington. "I hope when I come to London to form some plan with you in that way which may be pleasant and serviceable to us both."