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The Diplomatic and Official Papers of Daniel | terminated.” -But—" Our past history, how
Webster, while Secretary of State. New ever, will be unprofitable if it do not teach us York: Harper & Brothers, 1848.
that unjust pretensions, affecting our rights and
honor, are best met by being promptly repelled This volume contains the papers comprising when first urged, and by being received in a the history of the North-eastern Boundary spirit of resistance worthy the character of our Treaty of 1842; correspondence with Lord people and of the great trust confided to us as the Ashburton, relative to Maritime Rights, Im- depositories of the freest system of gorernment pressment, Inviolability of National Territory, which the world has yet witnessed. He then case of the Caroline, etc.; the case of McLeod; goes into his view of the question of the Right letters with Mr. Everett and Lord Aberdeen of Search, and concludes by stating in subrelative to the Right of Search; correspondence stance his reason for having demanded his rewith Mr. Cass previous and subsequent to his call :—"I now find a treaty has been concluded retirement from France; the Boundary Treaty between Great Britain and the United States, and Mr. Webster's great speech in desence which provides for the co-operation of the latthereof; papers concerning our relations with ter in efforts to abolish the slave trade, but Mexico, Spain, etc. etc.—the whole being pre- which contains no renunciation by the former faced by an Introduction giving a full account of the extraordinary pretension, resulting, as of the settlement of the Treaty.
she said, from the exigencies of these very efAt the conclusion of the introduction, it is forts; and which pretension I felt it my duty very justly remarked, that “although the pa to denounce to the French Government." From pers contained in the present volume probably this it is very clear that had Mr. Cass officiated form but a small portion of the official corre at that time as negotiator, the “ pretensions” spondence of the Department of State for the of Great Britain would have been met by “ a period during which it was filled by Mr. Web- spirit of resistance worthy, etc. ;” and that we ster, they constitute, nevertheless, the most im- should before this time have been, very possiportant part of the documentary record of a bly, involved in a war considerably more experiod of official service, brief, indeed, but as pensive and perhaps less glorious than our rébeneficial to the country as any of which the cent struggle to protect the national honor from memory is preserved in her annals.” Respect the insults of the haughty Mexicans ! ing the settlement of the boundary Treaty, to But Mr. Cass was not aware that the whole which the most important papers in the volume question of the right of visit and of search had chiefly refer, the writer also adds: “Much is been gone over in a letter from Mr. Webster due to the wise and amiable negotiator who to Mr. Everett, and discussed in so masterly a was dispatched on the holy errand of peace ; manner that nothing of what Mr. C. is pleased much to the patriotism of the Senate of the to style" pretension” has been heard of from United States, who confirmed the treaty by a that time to this or ever will be again, it is larger majority than ever before sustained a probable, so long as the world shall endure. measure of this kind which divided public opin- The silence of Lord Aberdeen, in reference to ion; but the first meed of praise is unquestion- | that dispatch, is an admission of the legality of ably due to the negotiator. Let the just meas Mr. Webster's views, which are, that unless ure of that praise be estimated by reflecting by express treaty, no such thing as a right of what would be our condition at the present day, visit, or search, exists between nations in time if instead of or in addition to the war with of peace; that such visit is therefore trespass ; Mexico, we were involved in a war with Great but yet that no flag can shield pirates-thus Britain."
firmly declaring the ocean to be in law what it One of the most interesting documents in is often styled by a figure—the great highway the collection is the elaborate and severe, yet of nations—where all have free right of pas. well merited rebuke of Mr. Cass, for writing sage without let or molestation except those of from Paris a letter expressing dissatisfaction whom it must be presumed that the party interwith the Treaty, after it had been concluded, fering with them has perfect knowledge that and after he had demanded his recall. Mr. they are felons or outlaws. That these must Cass took the liberty of informing the Depart- be regarded as now settled principles of interment of State that no one rejoiced“ more sin- national intercourse, the agreement of the two cerely than he at the termination of our diffi- governments after so many years in which the culties with Great Britain, so far as they were subject has been pending, the fact that four
years have elapsed since they were laid before nople—which would not encourage, rather than the British Ministry from our Department of rebuke, the free expression of the views of their State, and that during this time they have been representatives in foreign countries." P. 207. suffered to remain, although presented in the course of a correspondence having special ref
To which Mr. Wesbter stri kingly and conerence to the subject, without confutation, must
clusively answers :be deemed conclusive evidence. Surely the
“ What other construction (than as a protest or spirit in which Mr. Webster so well laid
down remonstrance) your letter will bear, I cannot perthe law has proved more happy in its results ceive. The transaction was finished. No letter than that which Mr. Cass would have had our
or remarks of yourself, or any one else, could un government manifest on the occasion. Discus- do it, if desirable. Your opinions were unsolicitsion and concession-a desire, to use a homely ed. If given as a citizen, then it was altogether phrase, “ to do what is right,” are much better unusual to address them to this Department in an calculated to promote those amicable relations official dispatch; if as a public functionary, the on which depend the welfare of nations, than whole subject-matter was quite aside from the that “ spirit of resistance” which Mr. Cass duties of your particular station. In your letter deems “ worthy the character of our people.” you did not propose anything to be done, but ob
The contrast between Mr. Cass's policy and jected to what had been done." P. 214. the course of Mr. Webster is placed in strong
Like all citizens of the republic, lights in the course of the correspondence here you are quite at liberty to exercise your own published. Mr. Cass writes from an impetuous But neither your observations nor this concession
judgment upon that as upon other transactions. and choleric temper, that does not permit him to see how.often he commits himself. Under public minister abroad, it is a part of your offi
cover the case. They do not show that, as a Mr. Webster's clear examination, ail he ad- cial functions, in a public dispatch, to remonstrate vances resolves itself into mere presumptuous against the conduct of the government at home wrongheadedness. Thus, for example, in the in relation to a transaction in which you bore no reply to the letter from which we have above part, and for which you were in no way answeraquoted, Mr. Webster says :
ble. The President and Senate must be permit
ted to judge for themselves in a matter solely * Your letter appears to be intended as a sort within their control. Nor do I know that, in of protest, a remonstrance, in the form of an offi- complaining of your protest against their procial dispatch, against a transaction of the govern- ceedings in a case of this kind, anything has been ment to which you were not a party, in which
done to warrant, on your part, an invidious and you had no agency whatever, and for the results unjust reference to Constantinople.” P. 216. of which you were no way answerable. This would seem an unusual and extraordinary pro struck with the extreme propriety and elegance
In reading this passage, one cannot but be ceeding. In common with every other citizen of the republic. you have an unquestionable right of Mr. Webster's diplomatic style. His mind to form opinions upon public transactions, and
seems to select from a hundred points of view the conduct of public men; but it will hardly be
the precise one which best illustrates a subject, thought to be among either the duties or the privi- and he gives it in language which, though leges of a minister abroad to make formal re careful, grave, and dignified, is yet natural. monstrances and protests against proceedings of For this quality we admire these letters more the various branches of the government at home, | than his early orations. upon subjects in relation to which he himself has Dot been charged with any duty or partaken any responsibility.” P. 195.
Angela. A Novel. By the Author of “Emilia
,” 6 Two Old Men's Tales," etc. Mr. Cass, in reply, says that his letter is not New York: Harper & Brothers. 1848. “a protest or remonstrance," and defends himself as follows:
In moral bearing, and so far as we have
been able to examine it, in the conduct of the "Is it the duty of a diplomatic agent to receive story, this tale is unexceptionable. But the all the communications of his government, and to characters are elaborated with a minuteness that carry into effect their instructions sub silentio, is not sustained by depth of thought, and in a whatever may be his own sentiments in relation style not poetic and elevating, but too intense, to them? Or, is he not bound, as a faithful rep- and too close an imitation of the language of resentative, to communicate freely, but respect- real life. The tale is probably intended, and fully, his own views, that these may be considered and receive their due weight in that particular readers. But we dislike to believe, either that
will be generally recommended for young lady case, or in other circumstances involving similar considerations? It seems to me that the bare it will be very popular with them, or that we enunciation of the principle is all that is neces have grown so old and wise as to be no longer sary for my justification." P. 106. * * “ And able to judge of what interests them. I may express the conviction that there is no gov In the first chapter we have a description of ersument-certainly none this side of Constanti a young man reposing under “that wild,
straggling hawthorn, where the huge twisted What a love of an animal! How delightful! branches, hoary with age, have assumed almost But not half so poetic as Amanda Fitzalan in the character of those of a forest tree.” This is the Children of the Abbey. interrupted by an apostrophe to the “ teens," from which we extract the following:
" He lay-lounged, I should say—under this
old, twisted hawthorn tree, upon a bank covered “ The teens! Oh what a gush of promise is with that green branching moss which is so soft there in that first burst of fervent life into and so beautiful; and the harebell and the flower! But the wind of the desert has passed lichens, and the little white starwort were growover the blossoms, and where are they? ing, with a few lingering primroses and violets “ What is the summer to this spring ?
in the shaw (how intensely Saxon!) which · Alas! alas!
stretched behind and beside him. This hawthorn "Most deeply, deeply pathetic sight !
tree stood out by itself a little in front of the “ He was like the rest of them, dear, earnest, shaw (O pshaw ?) which stretched along the field delightful young creatures”.
upon that side in front of a very high and thick
hedge of hawthorn and maple, traveller's joy How much of such writing must a critic (new plant) and brambles, honeysuckles and read in order to form a respectable opinion upon | eglantine, such as our youth loved in his heart." it? If twenty pages, there is one that must resign the profession.
The London Critic ranks this authoress "at On turning over the leaves we find that the the head of female novelists ;" the London whole book is paragraphed as in the extract Spectator thinks her “ Norman's Bridge surabove.
passes everything" this writer or perhaps any Whence has arisen this fashion of making chef d'æuvre; the John Bull thinks her humor
other writer has done, if we except Godwin's each separate sentence stand by itself?
From imitating Tupper,cockney philosopher? approaches that of Molière and Addison.
The American Review begs to be excused Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights are print- luctantly compelled to admit that the above
from perusing this, her last work, and is reed in this fashion also.
Was it invented by printers to save labor in specimens of puffing, bad as they are, cannot the correcting of proof? They have lately make it think more lightly of the opinion of the taken in hand our orthography. A boy who, London press than it did already. The novel at school
, should persist in spelling theatre is well enough, perhaps, as a sofily book—God " theater," as the Messrs. Harpers do now in
forbid we should be thought angry with it, their books, should be reprimanded, and if that but it is not to be compared with any of Mrs.
Austen's or a hundred others. did not suffice, chastised, until he amended.
Possibly this overmuch paragraphing was invented by the printers; but very plainly, The Seat of Government of the United States
. however it came into use, it is only a new device of the enemy of souls, who wills not that
By Joseph B. VARNUM, Jr. New York: men should love what is beautiful, but delights
Press of Hunt's Merchant's Magazine. 1848. to have them running into all manner of foolishness.
This is a full history of the City of WashBehold how easy it is to follow his sug- contains a review of the discussions in Con
ington, and view of its present condition. It gestions ! men and ladies be watchful not to fall into vul- including a particular notice of the Smithsonian But let all earnest, delightful young gentle- / gress and elsewhere on its site, and plans and
minute descriptions of its public works, &c., gar and degrading affectation. It is the pecu- | Institution, with a map. It is published in a Tiar literary vice of our time. Often, when we consider how it infects and spoils our
pamphlet form, and must necessarily, from the whole literature, we fancy that we have fallen
interest of the subject and the industry and upon dry days-days when the truly poetic is good sense which is manifest in the work, no longer sought for or felt when found.
command a very extensive sale. One more paragraph has caught our eye, which is so nice it must be given :
ERRATA. “ He was a tall, fine young man-not very tall,
In the article on the “ Adventures and Conneither, for he was beautifully proportioned—a quests of the Normans in Italy, during the Middle very model—the very ideal of the English Ages,” in the June number, the following errors youth. His eye so sweet, so ingenuous, so almost occurred, in consequence of inability to send a child-like in its truth and innocence, yet so deep, proof to the author :80 thoughtful, so full of indistinct meaning and On p. 619, for Mons Fovis read Mons Jovis. hidden melancholy (bad grammar); his mouth On p. 622, et seq., for Malfi read Melfi. was rather full, and the soft, silken moustache On p. 627, for Palermo read Paterno. just gave character to the upper lip."
On pp. 629, 630, for Barajgoi read Bapágygos
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THE AMERICAN REVIEW:
JAMES D. WHELPLEY, EDITOR: WITH The AssistaNCE, IN THE POLITICAL
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Colton, its former proprietor and Editor, a number of the leading Whig Members of the Twentyseventh Congress (1845-6.) subscribed their names to the following resolution :
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