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horror ; but, as it is, the slaves of luxury and vanity drop out of life unobserved and uncared for, as the stream of travellers disappeared one by one through the bridge of Mirza."
“O let those cities that of plenty's cup,
And her prosperities, so largely taste,
The misery of Tharsus may be theirs.” The moral of the eastern tale of Nourjahad is practical and pertinent. He delivers himself up to luxury and riot. He forgets that there are wants and distresses among his fellowcreatures. He lives only for himself, and his heart becomes as hard as the coffers which hold his misapplied treasures. But before it is too late he is awakened to remorse, and looks back with shame and horror on his past life. What shall he do to expiate his offences ? One thing at least is within his power, and that will he do at once : expend his riches in the relief of want-nor rest until he has found out every family in Ormuz whom calamity has overtaken, that he may restore them to prosperity. Henceforth he spends his days in his closet, laying plans for the benefit of his fellow-creatures. Ben Jonson's Sordido promises the like amendment :
“Pardon me, gentle friends, I'll make fair 'mends
For my foul errors past. ...
. . . . . O how deeply
No life is blest that is not graced with love." So again with the rich man in one of Crabbe's Borough sketches from life; that rich man, to wit, who
“ built a house, both large and high, And entered in and set him down to sigh ;
And planted ample woods and gardens fair,
WIND, EARTHQUAKE, FIRE, AND STILL SMALL
W H ILE Elijah stood upon the mount before the Lord,
VV there arose a great and strong wind that rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks; but the Lord was not in the wind : and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake : and after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire : and after the fire a still small voice. We are not told that the Lord was not in the still small voice. We find that He was. And with that voice He addressed Elijah, reasoned with him, admonished, sustained, and directed him. May it not be said, in applying and adapting the narrative, which things are an allegory ? The import of the narrative sublimely anticipates the homely fable
of sun and wind. Wind, earthquake, and fire, are mighty agents; but they may pass by without tangible result as regards real influence on the spirit of man; whereas the gentle influence of a still small voice speaks home to it at once, and it responds to the strain, and is subdued by the spell.
The drift of the present annotations, in their applied sense, finds expression in Ben Jonson's reminder :
“ There is
Fear works on servile natures, not the free." In Landor's Parable of Asabel, the angel's gentleness wrought upon that turbulent, refractory spirit, “even as the quiet and silent water wins itself an entrance where tempest and fire pass over.” It is written that other angels did look up with loving and admiration into the visage of this angel on his return; and he told the younger and more zealous of them, that whenever they would descend into the gloomy vortex of the human heart, under the softness and serenity of their voice and countenance its turbulence would subside.
Plutarch tells us of Fabius Maximus, that he thought it hard that, while those who breed dogs and horses soften their stubborn tempers, and bring down their fierce spirits by care and kindness, rather than with whips and chains, he who has the command of men should not endeavour to correct their errors by gentleness and goodness, but treat them in even a harsher and more violent manner than gardeners do the wild fig-trees, pears, and olives, whose nature they subdue by cultivation, and which by that means they bring to produce very agreeable fruit. *
* Plentiful illustrations might be drawn from Plutarch to the same effect. There is Mutius Scævola, for instance, addressing Porsenna: “Your threatenings I regarded not, but am subdued by your generosity.” There is Porsenna himself, who, as Publicola found, could not be quelled by dint of arms, but whom he converted into a friend to Rome, by “the gentle arts of persuasion." There is young Alexander, afterwards to be, or to be called, the Great, whose astute father saw that he did not easily submit to authority, because he would not be forced to anything, but that he might be led to his duty by the gentler hand of reason ; and therefore, as
We read of the distinguished Spanish author and statesman, Fermin Caballero, that while under the care of a kind and judicious instructor, he, as a boy, made rapid advance in the study of classical literature; but that on being removed from this tutor, and subjected to harsh and grinding discipline, he lapsed into idleness and obstinacy beyond all control. Not the least wise of the maxims to be culled from the pages of Terence is that in which satius esse credit Pudore et liberalitate liberos retinere, quam metu. Southey insists that no man was ever more thoroughly ignorant of the nature of children than John Wesley, as when he enjoins : “Let a child from a year old be taught to fear the rod, and to cry softly; from that age make him do as he is bid, if you whip him ten times running to effect it.” If Wesley had been a father himself, urges that tenderest of fathers, Robert the Rhymer, “he would have known that children are more easily governed by love than by fear.” And as with children, so with men, who are but children of a larger growth; and especially so with women, if we may take the word of one of Shakspeare's most winsome women for it:
“ You may ride us
a wise father, who knew his own son, Philip took the method of persuasion rather than of command.
What Plutarch says of the gentler hand of reason, reminds us of Swift's account of the Houyhnhnms, that “they have no conception -how a rational creature can be compelled, but only advised or exhorted.” And by the way, Swift remarks in a letter on England's harsh rule over the Irish, "Supposing even the size of a native's understanding just equal to that of a dog or a horse, I have often seen these two animals civilized by rewards at least as much as by punishments.”
But to return to Plutarch. There is his Flaminius, again, whose appointment to the command in the war with Macedon, he calls very fortunate for Rome, since what was required was “a general who did not want to do everything by force and violence, but rather by gentleness and persuasion.” As Claudian says, Peragit tranquilla potestas quod violenta nequit.
Fear, observes Adam Smith, is in almost all cases a wretched instrument of government, and ought in particular never to be employed against any order of men who have the smallest pretensions to independency. “To attempt to terrify them, serves only to irritate their bad humours, and to confirm them in an opposition which more gentle usage perhaps might easily induce them, either to soften, or to lay aside altogether.”
So with Landor's Filippa, on whom harsh treatment and compulsory measures are simply thrown away :
“Rudeness can neither move nor discompose her :
A word, a look, of kindness, instantly
Opens her heart and brings her cheek upon you.” And as with men and women, so with peoples, who are made up of men and women. And yet, although, as the author of the “Wealth of Nations” expresses it, management and persuasion are always the easiest and safest instruments of government, as force and violence are the worst and most dangerous ; such, it seems, is the natural insolence of man, that he almost always disdains to use the good instrument, except when he cannot or dare not use the bad one. Not that nations are without diversities of character, and so of susceptibility to diverse modes of government. Gibbon apologises, as it were, for Diocletian's utter destruction of those proud cities, Busiris and Coptos, and for his severe treatment of Egypt in general, by the remark, that the character of the Egyptian nation, insensible to kindness, but extremely susceptible to fear, could alone justify this excessive rigour. The tone is that of the courtier Crispe, to Phocas, in Corneille's “Heraclius :"
“Il faut agir de force avec de tels esprits ...
La violence est juste où la douceur est vaine." And Coke maintains that if they are the best whom love induces, they are the most whom fear restrains : Si meliores sunt quos ducit amor, plures sunt quos corrigit timor. La Fontaine's fable of the fishes and the flute-playing shepherd, intimates the sheer futility of wasting sweet sounds on ears not to be so caught. There are men, sententiously quoth Dr. Tempest, in the “ Last Chronicle of Barset,” who are deaf as adders to courtesy, but who are compelled to obedience at once by ill-usage.
Educationists must provide for the contingency of having to deal with abnormal natures of this crabbed and distorted kind. But as exceptions only. The Jesuits are confessedly masters of the arts of education; and the rule of the Jesuits is to lead