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a person — certainly has not solved it. She the reading of educated men, but one has tried very hard, with apparently most which we should by no means recommend upright intentions, and she has failed, either for households indiscriminately. The aubecause she has allowed some littérateur to thoress, as we bave said, is clearly honest, write out her own experience in his lan- and desirous only to state facts, and has a guage, or because she has simply mistaken wish not only to make those facts enticing, the easiest mode of conveying the impres- but to make them as unsavoury as she well sion she nevertheless desires to convey. "It is can, but she does not know precisely how to quite advisable, it is even at this moment ne- do it. Instead of being very direct and cessary, that the inside of the harem lite of very simple, she is very plain and not very Mohammedan Asia, the home life of a fourth simple, but addicted to shrouding statements of mankind, should be faithfully and honestly quite needsul to her objects in language described, as faithfully and honestly as the which arouses the very sense of annoyance interior life of Europe has been by a thou- she wishes to avoid. We wish we could sand pens. The world is less fixed in its give the best and easiest proof of her misbelief in the superiority of monogamy than management in this respect, but perhaps a it should be, and can derive only benefit still better proof is that we hesitate. Writfrom a plain statement of the results of the ing for educated men, and not for girls, we rival system. A clear and distinct account cannot accuse ourselves of over prudery, of the social meaning, the true drist and and with adequate reason to assign would working, of the Asiatic system, would be a set the conventional laws very distinctly at distinct gain not only to ethics, but to the defiance. And nevertheless, the fact that permanent convictions of civilization. It upon one of the simplest points of manners would seitle, for instance, one way or the and hygiene Oriental civilization differs abother, the latent doubt of the highest Eu- solutely from Western civilization, is in ropean caste whether monogamy is not an this book so clumsily stated that we decline idea, an acceptable idea no doubt, or even to quote the statement as it stands. Upon an essential idea where pedigree is impor- another question our refusal is more absotant, but still an idea, and not a principle, lute. The whole of the allusions to the liable to be overridden for the sake of con- " guardians of the harem” have obviously venience, or even of enjoymemt. Unfortu- and certainly been written by a man, and nately, for English readers at all events, to are in the very worst possible taste, in one or describe harem life, i. e. polygamy in its two passages almost disgusting. The fact ultimate and indeed necessary form, it is ne- of the employment of these men is really cessary to state certain facts which it is very important, as displaying the grand secret of hard to state in any form which is not, to Eng- Oriental life, that the restrictions upon lish ideas, slightly or gravely, according to an women do not arise in the faintest degree infinitely varying opinion, mischievous. The from the sentiment which in the West is only mode of accomplishing the feat is to called modesty, but the fact is sufficient be very plain and very simple, making the without the, to say the least, annoying repefacts as clear as possible, and also as little tition in this book. Two or three parasuggestive. Lady Duff Gordon has in her graphs besides have a sort of nursery plainleiters from Egypt succeeded in doing this, ness, quite harmless but not usual in English, succeeded, that is, in giving the truth of a and on the whole, while availing ourselves civilization whose laws upon all sexual sub- of the author's experience, we recommend jects differ from our own. though they are her book only to those careful to know the laws, without writing an objectionable book. bad side of Oriental polygamy. Of the Mrs. Lott - we assume from internal evi- good side she says nothing and saw nothing, dence that the “ English governess is mar- nor are we acquainted with any book which ried — has not so completely succeeded. really describes it, except perhaps The Her book is thoroughly honest and upright. Camp, the Mission, and the Zenana, and There is not in it a sentence which is not of the accomplished authoress of those much itself well-principled, or is calculated to abused volumes errs as much upon the side harm any human being not brought up in of reticence. the belief that ignorance is innocence. It Mrs. Lott was employed for some months would strike a French woman, or still more by Ismael Pacha as governess to his son, an Italian woman, of the better class, as a or rather as English teacher, and in that slightly realistic but absolutely unobjection- capacity accompanied his household on a able record of a very unusual and there- visit to Constantinople. Of course she saw fore very valuable experience. It is a the interior of harem life, and her imprescoarse book nevertheless, one well worth sion of it is what the impression of a nurse
ry governess slightly above the average which matched the hangings of each apartwas sure to be, that it was very magnifi- ment. cent, very uncivilized, a little disgusting, and unbearably uncomfortable. There There are twenty or thirty descriptions were jewels without end and without end like this alternated with others of filthy jealousies, glorious halls and squalid bed-rooms, bad food, and that kind of squalor rooms, infinite wealth and nothing fit to eat, which seems peculiar to Asiatics, the squalluxury of a kind beyond measure and no or, namely, which is indulged in as a relief civilization. This, for instance, is a de- from oppressive splendour. The ladies of stription of one chamber, or rather apparte- the harem, for example, never received ment -- curious tbat English has no equiva- their lord except in the richest attire, but lent for that word — in one of the many they lived by themselves dressed in a medViceregal palaces in Egypt.
ley of morning wrappers and diamonds,
and their chief, the first wife, whose rule “As soon as I had joined the little Prince, was absolute, superintended her laundresses, who waited patiently while I explored the shoeless, stockingless, with her hair hangchamber, we opened a door on the right hand, ing loosely about, and the sleeves of her passed through a small marble paved hall in which stood four life-size statues, each holding shoulders and there tied.”
dirty cotton wrapper tucked up to the gilt lamps in their hands, which led us into the Viceregal Bedchamber. It was a noblelooking room, covered with a handsome Brus- “One morning, when I returned from the sels carpet, with black ground and thickly stud- gardens into which I had been strolling for a ded with bouquets of variegated flowers of almost short time, I entered the Grand Pacha's recepevery hue. The whole was scrupulously clean. tion room, and there I beheld one of the most The gilt-iron bedstead was surmounted with extraordinary scenes imaginable. It was one gilded knobs, as also the foot and head plates of those nondescript tableaux to which only a The mosquito curtains were of fine crimson silk Hogarth could have done justice. My feeble gauze bespangled with gold crescents. The pen-drawing must necessarily fall very short of washhand-stand was of pure white marble, the original; for there were their Highnesses with ewer, basin, and the other usual append the Princesses, squatted on the carpet amidst a ages, of beautifully painted Sèvres china, the whole pile of trunks, most of which were much bouquets on which were artistically executed, deeper than carriage imperials — a host of portand matched the carpet admirably. A large manteaus and carpet bags of small and large dipier-glass hung down from the ceiling. The mensions-jewel cases and immense red leather divan (which was rather diminutive in compari- sacks capable of holding from six to eight son to those generally placed in the apartments mattresses. They were all attired in filthily of Turkish dwellings) and chairs were covered dirty crumpled muslins, shoeless and stockingwith crimson silk bespangled with gold cres- less, their trousers were tucked up above their
The toilet-table, on which were placed knees, the sleeves of their paletots pinned up His Highness's toilet requisites, all of solid gold, above their elbows, their hair hanging loosely inlaid with most valuable precious stones, was about their shoulders, as rough as a badger's covered with a similar cloth. The ebony cabinet back, totally unencumbered with nets or handwas inlaid with gold, and costly jewels, on each kerchiefs, but, pardon me, literally swarming side of which stood two silver branch candelabras with vermin ! no Russian peasants could posholding a dozen transparent coloured wax can- sibly have been more infested with live anidles; and in the centre was placed His High- mals. In short, their tout ensemble was even ness's jewel casket, a perfect gem of the same
more untidy than that of hardworking washermaterial, richly inlaid. The walls were cov
women at the tubs ; nay, almost akin to Bil. ered with crimson paper, embossed with gold lingsgate fishwomen at home, for their convercrescents. The ceiling was beautifully painted sation in their own vernacular was equally as with Turkish and Egyptian landscapes. The low. They all swore in Arabic at the slaves chimney piece was of white marble, and the most lustily, banged them about right and left handsome, elegant bronze stove on the spotless with any missile, whether light or heavy, white marble hearth was constructed in the which came within their reach. form of a kiosk. Then we proceeded through a door that was left wide open into another The same lady, however, revelled on State chamber similarly fitted up, except that the occasions in rings with diamonds in them furniture was of yellow satin bespangled with almost as large as the Koh-i-noor since it silver crescents, which was invariably occupied has been cut," and our fairer readers will by that Ikbal, ' favourite,' whom the Viceroy thank us for this minute description of the from time to time delighted to honour. This was the guests' chamber, and the history of its State dress worn by the second wife on her occupants would form a singular addition to the visit to the Sultan's barem : annals of Egyptian history. The beds in both these roons were encased in richly figured satin, “Her Highness the Princess Epouse wore a
most superb thick white moiré-antique silk and commode, and her impressions before robe, with a long train, trimmed with hand- and after her frank reception among the some point Alençon lace, having rich ruches ladies of the harem were as unfavourable of tulle and pink'artificial daisies all around as those recorded in this extract: it. The body and sleeves were also trimmed with silver ribbon and daisies. The bertha was composed of rich lace, ribbons, and daisies. “ There I was, totally unacquainted with eiHer slender waist was encircled with a ceinture ther the Turkish or Arabic tongues ; unaccuscomposed of sapphires and diamonds. On her tomed to the filthy manners, barbarous cusarm she wore diamond bracelets. Around her toms, and disgusting habits of all around me; neck was clasped a superb diamond necklace. deprived of every comfort by which I had alHer head was adorned with a tiara of dia- ways been surrounded; shut out from all ramonds, arranged in the shape of Indian wheat, tional society; hurried here and there, in the the weight of which was very great. An im- beat of a scorching African sun, at a moment's mense branch, forming a geranium flower in notice ; absolutely living upon nothing else but full blossom, composed of opals, diamonds, dry bread and a little pigeon or mutton, barely emeralds, rubies, amethysts, formed the stom- sufficient to keep body and soul together. Comacher of her dress. & pink satin Turkish pelled to take all my meals but my scanty cloak, with sleeves and cape, was placed on her breakfast (a dry roll and cup of coffee) in the shoulders. Her face was covered with a rich society of two clownish, disgusting, German Brussels lace veil, one end of which was placed peasant servants; lacking the stimulants so esover the head, and the other end crossed over sentially necessary for the preservation of the mouth and nose, passed round the back of health in such a hot climate; stung almost to the neck, and tucked down behind the cloak. death with mosquitoes, tormented with flies, Her feet were encased in white silk stockings, and surrounded with beings who were breeders white satin shoes, richly embroidered with of vermin; a daily witness of manners the coloured silks, pearls, and gold and silver most repugnant, nay, revolting, to the delicacy thread, with high gold heels, over which she of a European female - for often have I seen,
a pair of yellow morocco papooshes, in the presence of my little Prince, slippers.' In her hand she held a rich pink silk parasol, lined with white satin, trimmed «« A lady of the Harem, not more forward with a deep silver fringe, with a gold han
than all the rest, dle, inlaid with a great variety of precious On her fingers were a large yellow
Well versed in Syren's arts, it must be condiamond and a beautiful sapphire ring. Her
Shuffle off her garments, and let her figure Grand Eunuch held over her head a handsome
stand revealed large pink silk umbrella.”
Like that of Venus, who no charms con
cealed!' The odalisques are seldom educated, are in an English woman's opinion fearfully indelicate, though some of this must be set not only despised me because I was a Howadji
Surrounded by intriguing Arab nurses, who down to the cardinal rule of Oriental but hated me in their hearts because, as a Euspeech — "Nothing natural can be indeli- ropean lady, I insisted upon receiving, and cate,”
- are incessantly intriguing against most assuredly I did receive, so far as H. H. the each other and the wives, and are, strange Viceroy and their H.H. the Princesses, the three to say, hungry for money, of which some of wives were concerned
proper respect. The them possess large sums. They were kind bare fact of my being allowed to take preceenough to the English governess when they dence of the inmates of the Harem, even of the understood her, and made her a sort of uni- and there is no doubt but they were at that versal referee upon Frankish customs, and time inwardly resolved to do their utmost to of course the lower women followed their render my position as painful as possible, nay, example. Indeed, though Mrs. Lott com- even untenable. Then my only companions
plains repeatedly of her treatment, she re- were the ladies of the Harem, whose appearI cords frankly a little incident which to any ance I have already described as being totally one acquainted with the East speaks vol- at variance with that glowing myth-like picture umes as to her position.
The Heir Appar
that Tom Moore gives of retired beauty, so ent's head nurse never took a backshish erroneously supposed to be caged within the without compelling her to accept three- precincts of the Abodes of Bliss, in his exqui
site poem of Lalla Rookh ; for therein I failed to fourths, without assigning her, that is, the find rank a gouvernante would hold in a European royal family. Her orders seem latter
“Oh, what a pure and sacred thing ly never to have been disobeyed, yet she
Is beauty curtained from the sight was compelled, as she repeatedly complains, Of the gross world, illumining to fight for a European chair, bedstead, One only mansion with her light!'
They were composed of the old Ikbals, favour-comfortable as is the body in wearing anothites of Ibraham Pacha, and some of those who er person's dress. Either it will not fit behad ceased to rank as such, or, as the slaves cause it was meant for persons of different fig. emphatically termed it, to please the ‘Baba Ef- ure and height, or if it fits, it will not suit, endimir.'"
because the worsted or flannel which keeps She rather liked the little Prince, however,
one person in a comfortable glow chafes the who had the making of a man in him, ruin- skin of another into a fever. So it is also ed by early absolutism. No order he gave like poets, make their own, as silkworms
with the poetical dress of those who do not, at six years old was ever resisted. He tlung red-hot coals in slaves' faces with the most
weave their own cocoons. Teachers canperfect impunity, and tore out the lips of not bear to use another person's selection one of his half-sisters with no consequence
of poetry, nor even readers to see pieces save a sudden order from his mother that they do not care for, or dislike, extracted the sufferer should kiss the hem of his robe. at great length, while their own private His favourite pursuit was to play at bank- treasures are ignored. But the curious ing and drilling the little slaves, two games thing is that though they cannot satisfy curiously illustrative of the unique position themselves with other persons' selections, occupied by the Pachas of Egypt, the great- they almost always start with the purpose est merchant princes on the globe. He and of making other persons love their own; his sisters ate with gold spoons and their and in order to do this will even sacrifice to fingers out of a tray, which looked after some extent that dominant taste of theirs wards like the tray of remnants carried out which led them to prepare a special selecof a dirty cook-shop. The badness of her tion for their separate use. Thus the edidiet ultimately drore Mrs. Lott out of the tor of the beautiful selection of poems called, harem, just as she had become reconciled somewhat artificially we think, Poems of the to a position which was, we imagine, not
Inner Life, admits that he has included a without considerable pecuniary profit. The number which he would not otherwise have impression left by her whole book is that a
included, and excluded of course in consesplendour and squalor, luxury and discom; "I have purposely avoided applying any great Asiatic harem is a microcosm of Asia, quence some of his own more special favour
ites, on the false idea of being catholic. fort, adventure and monotony, licence and slavery, so inextricably commingled that no the whole contents of the volume too close
very rigid personal test, that might make account ever reveals more than half the truth.
ly conformable to my own especial taste and feeling." In other words, he has purposely avoided applying strictly the only principle of unity that he had to apply. If he were to include all poems to which a cul
tivated taste could assign a real merit bearFrom the Spectator.
ing on spiritual thoughts and feelings, his
collection would have been made, we supPOETICAL SELECTIONS.*
pose, in ten thick volumes instead of one The strong impulse which almost all peo- thin one. The only sort of sifting principle who love poetry, and are not themselves ple he had to apply was the sieve of personpoets, feel to select their own selection of alliking, and 'he feared to apply it poems is curious enough. The dislike to thoroughly, lest it should result in not gainusing the selections of others, even when ing the wide suffrage for his book which he They are as indisputably good as the Golden desired. That is, he included some poems he Treasury of Mr. Palgrave, or the Children's did not very much care for, as a sort of bait Gurland of Mr. Coventry Patmore, is not to people who do not care very much for his unlike the dislike to wearing another per- own favourites to read them and learn to like son's coat, or gown, or under-garments. them. “You shall have this dirge of Felicia Men's and women's imaginations weave for Hemans',” we can imagine him saying to themselves a sort of poetical vesture that himself, “ which is, however, not really very suits their own wants and expresses their good, as a tribute to your own private preown hearts; they search in vain in the col- \ judices, in order that it may inspire you lections of others for the poems that strike with some respect for the editor's taste, and the most musical chord in their own minds, so lead you to admire this one of Henry and not finding it, they fret and are as un- Vaughan's, which I myself enjoy above
* Poems of the Inner Life. Selected chiefly from everything.” We must say we think the Modern Authors. Sampson Low.
editor has made a mistake in a selection of
this sort in not applying rigidly the only We should add that the volume is beautest he had to apply. It was not as if the tifully printed, and that the little ornamenvolume were meant for use in religious ser- tal vignettes at the close of the poems are vices. Then no doubt a much more ex- full of grace and spirit. ternal test - the test of general acceptance
would have been legitimate. But such selections as these exist in abundance, and the only raison d'être of a new one, is the existence of a new intensity of personal love for the poems it includes. It is most
From the Saturday Review, 13 Jan. likely that “ R. C. J.” has not only sacri
AMERICAN SYMPATHIES. ficed his own judgment wherever he has included a poem as a bait to the popular We have lately been favoured with sevtaste which he did not himself particularly eral expositions of the sentiments with which admire, but done so without succeeding in Americans generally, regard the nations netting so many admirers for his book as of the Old World. In the last number of he would otherwise have had. However, the Fortnightly Review, Mr. Conway has the selection is unquestionably a fine one, given a curious picture of their view of the and includes many poems that are not relative merits of France and England. familiar to ordinary English readers. As a The result at which he arrives cannot be matter of course, the present reviewer called satisfactory, The Americans might, resents the inclusion of some, and feels pro- he says, be forced into a war in order to foundly how much better the space would turn the French out of Mexico; but it would have been occupied by others that are neg- be a war to which the whole current of lected; but there are none without some popular sentiment would be opposed. On the beauty, and a large number, if not most of other hand, should any circumstances prothem, are really fine poems. Here is one voke a war with England; they would go little known to the English public, and with into it with enthusiasm. It would gratify the a dash of mysticism in it, but which has whole body of the nation, with the excepalways struck us as worthy of a poet of the tion of that class — insignificant in number first order. It is by the late Mr. W. C. in all countries — whose policy is dictated Roscoe :
rather by reason than by passion. The great
majority would snatch, with unmixed pleas• SYMBOLS OF VICTORY.
ure, at any pretext for fighting and, if possible,
humiliating England. This amiable temper " Yellow leaves on the ash-tree,
has of course been aggravated, and in some Sofo glory in the air,
classes produced, by our attitude in the late And the streaming radiance of sunshine, On the leaden clouds over there.
contest. Whatever ground they may have
had for the belief, Americans undoubtedly “At a window a child's mouth smiling,
did believe that Englishmen all but unaniOverhung with tearful eyes
mously rejoiced in the dangers of the great At the flying rainy landscape
Republic, gloated over their misfortunes, And the sudden opening skies.
and were generally convinced that those
misfortunes were only a righteous punish“Angels hanging from heaven,
ment for their manifold shortcomings. It A whisper in dying ears,
might bave been more Christian to forgive And the promise of great salvation Shining on mortal fears.
such feelings, supposing them to have exist
ed, but it was certainly more natural to re“A dying man on his pillow
taliate them. And, whether right or wrong, Whose white soul #ed to his face,
we must be prepared for the simple fact, Puts on her garment of joyfulness
that a good many grudges have been accuAnd stretches to Death's embrace. mulated against this country in the last
few years, which our scrupulous neutrality Passion, rapture, and blindness,
was unable to avert, and which Americans Yearning, aching, and fears,
would be only too glad to satisfy before they And, faith and duty gazing
have had time to die out. At the same time, With steadfast eyes upon tears.
a similar contrast between France and “I see, or the glory blinds me
England had been familiar to the popular Of a soul divinely fair,
mind in America long before the war. Peace after great tribulation,
There was a certain vein of sentiment, And victory hung in the air."
which was worked principally to obtain ma