Sayfadaki görseller

Exertions of the British Government.

501 bearance of a conquering horde. The necessities of a native

. prince might tempt him to break his promises and treaties, to seek to impose new and onerous conditions, and to repudiate his plighted faith. Under these circumstances the Company could only place dependence on themselves. They found it necessary

. to create a power of their own, and that power has been extended by force of arms. But the more the Company has extended its territories, the more it has strengthened itself and improved the condition of India. This applies to the Afghan war, produced by the intrigues of Russia in Persia and Afghanistan, to the Sikh and Scinde and other wars, which resulted in the victories of Meanee, Moudki, Feroseshah, Aliwal, Sobraon, Chillianwallah, Googerat, &c. Wherever our arms succeeded, we generally found c

, the people abject, false, degraded, and wretched; and we have uniformly raised them up and befriended them by rescuing them from the plundering tyranny of their native princes. They have acknowledged the prestige of our superior wisdom and strength, and the Sikh, the Mootlanies, the Ghoorkas, and the other hill people, ten years ago our enemies, are now our stanch friends and allies against Mussulman and Hindoo. This satisfactory fact is stated in a letter from Lieutenant-Colonel Edwardes, C.B., written from Peshawur on the 6th of July. With the British troops so aided, we shall hold our own against Delhi and the Mogul, and against far worse adversaries. Though the mutineers of Lahore, Sealcote, Peshawur, Ahmedabad have two millions in their hands, and fight with desperation, we shall destroy them root and branch, and regain a great portion of the booty they have plundered. As Colonel Edwardes says, disorganized fragments of rebel regiments never can contend successfully with the well-appointed battalions of our army led by English officers.

We must in justice say that the exertions of the Government have been most praiseworthy. The Army Estimates of this year provide for twenty-four regiments of Infantry and four of Cavalry; and since the 27th of June, we repeat, more than 30,000 troops have been sent to India. Fifteen thousand militia have been already called out, and are now exercising on stated days, and fifteen second battalions of the Line have been formed instead of the regiments embarked for India Independently of this, the regiments at home or on colonial service have been raised from 810 to 1000, and an additional force has been added to the Artillery. The force in Bengal is commanded not by a soldier of the drawing-room school, selected like the late Commander-inChief, General Anson, for his aristocratic connexion, but by an energetic and vigorous pupil of Wellington and Napier, who has seen more service in the field in every country in the world than any living commander--need we say we refer to Sir Colin Campbell, the architect of his own good fortune. Sir Colin Campbell will not be found up the country at Simla, like his predecessor, while work is to be done in the field. On the contrary, he will be found in the midst of the troops, partaking of their dangers and sharing in those triumphs which are only deferred to be rendered more certain.

We wish we could say that we repose full confidence in the Governor-General or in his Council. Lord Canning is an amiable, honourable man; but he possesses not the talents of his father, and wants energy and firmness. Like all the party of the late Sir R. Peel (one wonders how any one bearing the name of Canning could have become a Peelite), he lacks courage and conviction, and has low views of trimming and expediency. Without thinking so meanly of him, or his advisers the Council, as the author of The Mutiny of the Bengal Army, we believe there is not among them one man of superior energy or ability. Messrs. Dorin, Grant, Low, Birch, and Beadon are persons of merely average capacity, and Mr. Peacock, though an excellent pleader under the old system, and a man of subtle intellect, is about as qualified to command before Delhi as to advise in Council. In truth, it must be stated that the average of Governors General, of Commanders-in-Chief, and of military and civil servants, has of late years fearfully deteriorated. There are now no GovernorsGeneral like Hastings, Wellesley, Moira, and Ellenborough, no Commanders and military officers like Lake, Wellesley, Napier, Monro, Malcolm, Sale, and Nott-no civil servants like Elphinstone, Colebrook, Metcalfe, and Holt Mackenzie. The late Governor-General of India was an industrious clerk, of good business-like abilities, but without statesmanlike qualities; and he governed by cliques and favouritism. His predecessor, Lord Hardinge, was an industrious, clear-headed, painstaking man, but without high qualities of mind. To govern India we should

. send a first-rate statesman, or a first-rate soldier, or a man combining political ability with military knowledge, such as Cornwallis and Moira. A statesman or a man of genius would, in Lord Dalhousie's place, have foreseen and provided against this mutiny. It was foretold by Napier, by Jacob, and by Metcalfe; but the great red-tapist of the Board of Trade, proud in his own conceit, would not read coming events by any light but his own patent composite three-inch taper. While there is a hardy soldier in India as Commander-in-Chief, it matters little who is Governor-General; but when we have not a thorough soldier to handle the army in India, we should have a first-rate statesmana man with the abilities of a Hastings or a Wellesley.

A Change in the Government imperative.


As to the double Government of India, it is in itself doubtless a great evil; but, practically, the Government may now be said to be in the hands of the Crown, though the Company is also accountable. The East India Company undoubtedly consists of men of integrity and good intentions, but it is questionable whether men of their traditions and training can govern in India otherwise than as traders and merchants. Can they administer India wholly with a view to the general good of Hindostan and the empire, or can they honestly endeavour to proceed with those measures which would benefit all the inhabitants of India ? The conscientious discharge of this high duty can alone strengthen us against future trials. A selfish, a narrow, an insincere, or a mercantile policy adopted now may place us in inextricable future difficulties. In the government of India we must henceforth look, as was said in this journal four years and a half ago,* to higher objects than mere administration--we must look to great, broad, and philanthropical principles, such as have been accepted by real statesmen, such as are approved by those under the dominion of right feeling and right reason. To those higher objects and principles the attention of the gentlemen in Leadenhall-street has not always been thoroughly directed. The Directors are not as much amenable to the public opinion of a great and enlightened nation as the Ministers for the time being, whether Whig or Tory; and this alone is a sufficient reason for making some change in the future government. The country is now awakened to the magnitude of the crisis, and we believe there is an honest desire among enlightened men to meet the necessities of the case. India must no longer be governed as a country for the exercise of the patronage of twenty-four or twelve Directors, but must be governed as a mighty empire, whose interests are identical with those of Great Britain. A central authority, for the most part permanent, but always responsible to Parliament, would seem to be now indispensable. We would not have a Bill for the future government of India proceed on the assumption of Fox's Bill, that the Company had betrayed their trust, mismanaged their affairs, or oppressed the natives; or on the scheme of Pitt's Bill, which did not seek to destroy but to control, and which neither stripped the Company of its privileges nor divested it of territorial rights. The times in which we live require a different arrangement--an arrangement based on fuller data and longer experience, unprejudiced at once and fearless. We must seek to advance the people's happiness, to foster knowledge, and to become in a greater degree than we have ever the disinterested

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instruments of the elevation of two hundred millions of men. How we are to accomplish these purposes can be best decided after the mutiny is finally subdued. Meanwhile it will be necessary to direct public opinion to the consideration of the question of the future government of India. While a British army is engaged in re-establishing tranquillity, and the Governor-General in Council is reconstructing the army, British Members of Parliament, politicians, and statesmen would do well to turn their minds to the consideration of the future form of government of an empire which we are bound to rule upon enlightened, just, and conscientious principles. If this double-government cannot be made to work without allowing A to throw the blame of any amount of disaster upon B, and B to throw the charge back again upon A, then assuredly there must be an end to that policy. If there are to be blunders in the future, there must be no room for mistake or hesitancy as to whence they have come.




WHEN Cæsar invaded this island, its population could hardly have exceeded some three millions. And those millions were little skilled in the arts of civilization. But the force in the military stations of Britain rarely fell so low as 20,000 men. In times of danger it sometimes rose to 50,000, with an Emperor as commander.

We English are sometimes said to be, beyond any other people, successors to those old Romans. If so, it is a pity we should have been so slow in learning some of the lessons which our great precursors have left to us. The races of Hindostan are possessed of a civilization more ancient than that of Rome itself, and they number two hundred millions. But we have been expecting to govern the two hundred millions of Hindostan by means of an army little greater than that which the Romans deemed necessary to ensure obedience from the three millions of rude tribes in ancient Britain. True, we have had a large native army—but to confide in a native army to subjugate natives, has been a piece of wisdom altogether from ourselves. We did not learn that from the military history of the Romans.

Never, since England has been a nation, has English feeling been so outraged, and English blood so atrociously shed, as in these Indian mutinies. But even the miscreants at Delhi and Cawnpore have their semi-apologists among us. Yes, and were the contents of the Bottomless Pit let loose upon us, the same parties could soon make it appear that the universe would never have had a Bottomless Pit but for the English.

The precious lives which have been sacrificed by the weakness—the obstinate, weakness which has prevailed somewhere, can never be restored. But compensation, to the utmost extent possible, to the sufferers who survive should be exacted as being no more than simple justice. To be content with anything short of that would be to say let the innocent suffer, and let the guilty go free. NO. LII.


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