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wise specified the modes of cultivation which he observed on his course; but he gives us no information on the manufactures of the country, and no statistical accounts, unless we take as such the enumeration of the inhabitants of some of the towns. One farming establishment he seems to have visited with considerable attention. We quote what he says of it, as a favourable specimen of his mode of communicating agricultural details:
“ It was my fortune to fall in with a very intelligent man, a considerable land-owner and farmer, who was very communicative, and appeared to be remarkably accurate. He accompanied me to the large village, or rather town of Aranagoen, where he resided, and where he invited me to see his premises. I learnt from him, that the usual course of cropping on the farms between the spot where the rich meadows ceased, and his estate, was the following. The land when cleaned was manured, and sowed with buck-wheat; after that, a second dressing of dung is administered, and after a single ploughing, rye is sowed. The rye is usually harvested in July, when turnips are sowed after a single ploughing. They have thus regularly three crops in
every years. The produce of the buck-wheat on an average of years, is a last, or 104 quarters to four malts, or two morgens of land; or from twenty to twenty-two of our bushels to the acre.
The rye is estimated to produce about two more of our bushels to the acre than the buck-wheat; but this year, as is the case in England, rye falls considerably below an average crop. The turnips are the worst, because the most neglected of the three crops. The seed instead of being of one kind, was red round, white round, tankard, and some other species, with which I was not acquainted, all mingled together. The plants were healthy, and quite as thick as was necessary; but though the bulbs were formed, they had not been hoed, nor had even the harrows been drawn through to thin them. It is therefore impossible they should become a tolerable crop, This was the only deficiency I noticed, either on my companion's land, or in the track which we had spent two hours together in passing over. As far as I could judge, the portion of manure administered before the buck-wheat and rye, was small. I could not hit on any measure with which my companion was acquainted, that enabled me to reduce his quantities to cubic yards, or our common cart-loads; but I was led to guess that not more than seven or eight of our Surry and Kent cart-loads were applied to the acre. My informant, in a language between Dutch and German, but very intelligible to me, remarked, speaking of manure, The farms in Holland are in general small, varying from fifty to a hundred acres. The price of land is about 601. per acre, including the farm houses and other necessary buildings; and the rent, according to Mr. Jacob, gives a return of 21, 22, or 3 per cent. From facts, however, which he himself states, it would appear that the profit of money invested in land is higher than this. Land which may be bought for 800 guilders, lets at 36, and what cost 500, at 21; that is, there is a return of 41 or 4 per cent. on the purchase money. The landlord, we admit, has the land-tax of 25 per cent. to pay; but this, though a most weighty consideration to the proprietor in the calculation of his income, is not to be taken to account in ascertaining the profit of a particular application of capital.
wenig und ofters ist besser als fiel und selten;" a little frequently is better than much and seldom. I observed the farm-yards, and the hogsties, were well bedded with a fine sand, but that
little straw was applied to be converted into manure. There can be no doubt but such sand will imbibe and retain the fæces of the animals ; but it
may be doubted, if so much ammonia is administered to the land by this mode as by the putrefactive fermentation which is produced by the abundance of straw, that is trodden in with the exuviæ in our English farm-yards." (P. 48-50.)
The operation of draining, and the maintenance of the dykes, are two main circumstances in the agricultural economy of Holland. As there is little or no declivity to carry off the water, recourse is had to the aid of numerous and powerful windmills. By ancient custom each district has its windmill, to which every occupier of land pays certain duties. The proprietor of the mill is on his part obliged to keep it in repair, and the government exercises a superintending power, to see that he does not neglect his duty. The dykes are a still more important
“ The road I had hitherto travelled was on the top of the dykes, which confine within the canals the whole water of the country. As far as my eye could determine, these dykes are on the side towards the fields, about thirteen or fourteen feet in height, but varying according to the elevation or depression of the land. The slope from the top to the bottom forms an angle of about forty-five degrees. I thought them about twenty-four feet wide at the top, and if both sides sloped equally, they would be somewhat more than double that width at the bottom. The inner side, however, borders a canal, which is usually from four to six feet in depth. The bottom of the canal must, consequently, be from six to eight feet higher than the level of the surrounding fields. From this situation of the water above the land, it will be readily conceived, that great solicitude must exist to maintain the dykes in good condition; and that the expense of clearing the fields of the floods, by pumping the water to such height must be enormous. The dykes are formed, and kept in repair, by bundles of willows interlaced, so as to form a slanting wall, and the interstices are filled with earth well puddled, and thereby rendered compact. The expense of maintaining the dykes is supported by a tax laid on the surrounding lands, which is levied by commissioners, according to long established usage, in such a manner as to create little discontent, and scarcely any suspicion of unfairness. The expenditure in human labour is great, but is much exceeded by the cost of the willows, though they grow near the places where they are wanted, in very ex tensive plantations.” (P. 15.)
A part of this passage is not intelligible. It is stated that on the inner side of the dyke there is a canal four or six feet deep, and it is inferred that the bottom of the canal must therefore be six or eight feet above the level of the country. The inference may be true as a matter of fact, but does not follow from the premises. It may easily be conceived that the failure of any part of these dykes is attended with the most destructive consequences.
“ One of the richest tracts of country in the vicinity of Arnhem has been often exposed to tremendous inundations. These are frequently felt at the breaking up of a long frost; but in no instance so calamitously as in the winter 1808-9. A violent tempest from the north-west had raised the waters of the Zuyder sea, some feet above the highest mark of the spring-tides, and the waves beat with unusual violence against the dykes, constructed to break their fury. The thaw, on the Upper Rhine had increased the quantity and the force of its waters, which brought down masses of ice fourteen feet in height, and more than half a mile in length; to which the embankments, softened. by the thaw, and somewhat injured, presented an insufficient barrier. A breach made in one part soon extended itself, and the torrent quickly covered the country, bearing before it by its force, the villages, the inhabitants, and the cattle. The height of the Zuyder sea prevented the water from finding an outlet; and it consequently remained on the ground for a long period, in spite of the exertions of the surviving inhabitants. By this event, more than seventy houses were totally destroyed, a far greater number irretrievably damaged, and of nine hundred families, more than five hundred were rendered utterly destitute ; more than four hundred dead bodies were left on the borders of the current, and at the city of Arnhem, five hundred persons, mostly women and children, with many hundred head of cattle, were rescued from a watery grave, by the hazardous heroism of the inhabitants, who ventured in boats to their rescue.” (P. 57, 58.)
The whole expense of maintaining the drains, dykes, and roads (exclusively of the very heavy tolls on the latter), amounts to about one-eighth of the rent. It is borne by the occupiers, of lands.
Mr. Jacob is of opinion that the agriculture of Holland has been improved since its occupation by the French. He is most probably in the right; for, after the country had lost all its colonies, and all its foreign commerce, much capital must have been forced into agriculture, not as a preferable employment, but as the only channel which was open. The amelioration of the agricultural aspect of the land may have been the result of general misery and ruin. Some of the circumstances, however, on which our traveller forms his opinion of the improvement of Holland, are of a dubious character:-“ The signs of recent, if not of present, prosperity,” says he, “were very distinctly to be, seen in every walk around this city, and the number of houses of public entertainment which are decorated with the marks of improvement, are evidences of a degree of ease in the circumstances of many of the inhabitants at least.” An increase in the number and elegance of houses of public entertainment is no sure sign of increasing prosperity. It may often be a proof of nothing more than a change in the public manners. "The houses of public resort are, with reference to the comparative population of the two cities, and comparative luxury of the two countries, much more numerous and elegant in Paris than in London; not because there is more wealth in the former than in the latter, but because the habits of life in these two capitals are dissimilar. A Frenchman finds his happiness away from home, an Englishman at home. The circumstance specified by Mr. Jacob may be nothing more than the result of the introduction of less domestic habits than formerly prevailed in Holland.
It is pleasing to find, that the religious character of the Dutch has not been contaminated by the example of their rulers and oppressors. They still continue true to the faith and worship of their fathers. No one can preserve a decent character in society without attending regularly the public service of the sect to which he belongs. The consequence is, that on Sunday the churches are crowded with attentive audiences.
Nothing is of more importance to national morality than this. The labouring classes must have a day of repose; but the period of repose becomes too often a period of vicious indulgence. They can be saved from depravity only by the regular practice of attending the public rites of religion on the day of exemption from toil. It is to be regretted that with us public opinion does not exert its influence more decidedly on this point.
A circumstance which at first struck us as remarkable is, that in Holland Catholics are preferred as domestics both by their own sect and by Protestants. The reason assigned is, that they are supposed to be more honest, because their priests will not absolve them till they have made restitution. The cause, we apprehend, ought to be expressed more generally. The Catholics are not the predominating sect; they cannot number among their votaries many of the higher ranks; as their conduct is thus more liable to remark and reproof, it becomes necessary for the priests to keep a stricter watch over the actions of their flocks, than is exercised by the ruling religion.
Neither the French language nor French literature, in spite of all the efforts of the revolutionary government, has made much progress in Holland. The books, which Mr. Jacob observed in the shops, were chiefly translations from the English, some from the German; only a few from the French. This we hail as an
auspicious symptom of public feeling, public taste, and public principle.
Holland is suffering under a distress similar to that of which we complain,
though much higher in degree. During the operation of the Continental system, a considerable portion of the soil was employed in the growth of tobacco. Since the renewal of intercourse with America, that article is imported cheaper and better in quality than that which is produced at home. Thus the tobacco cultivators have been ruined. To add to their distress, all other agricultural produce has so fallen in price as to afford little or no profit. In vain do they turn their attention to commerce; the prospect in that quarter is equally dreary; for, in their ports, all is still and idle. By our recent restrictive laws they are deprived of that market for their cheese and butter, which they were accustomed to find in England. Their transit corn trade is likewise at an end; for our ports are generally shut, and it is impossible to foresee, at a sufficient distance of time, when they will be open and when they will remain closed. At the same time, the taxes are heavier than under the French usurpation, not from any fault of the government, which is confessedly economical, but merely in consequence of a very obvious law of all human society-that the institutions for the public administration and defence of an independent state must
cost more than the government of a province of a large military empire. Displeased at paying more than formerly, the people, without attending to the reason of the case, are dissatisfied with the government which makes them pay. The general discon
tent is exasperated among particular classes by particular causes. The commercial part of the community, for instance, accuses the government of undue partiality, because some of the burdens on agriculture have been lightened, and replaced by taxes that affect trade. They forget the enormous direct contribution of 25 per cent. paid by the proprietors of land, and do not call to mind that the minute taxes on the other classes must be
very numerous, to equal this one imposition. Such is the state of Holland. The administration of a country so situated is a dif.ficult and delicate task; and what renders it still more arduous is, the difference of the national characters, and the supposed contrariety of the interests of Holland and Belgium. The difference of character is delineated by Mr. Jacob in one of the best expressed passages of his book.
“ In the Seven Provinces, which are usually distinguished by the name of Holland, from the most important of the number, there is still kept alive a chivalrous spirit of independence; there exist recollections and associations, which recall the patriotic minds to the periods when their ancestors resisted the power of Spain in its zenith, con