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low, cheap form of publication, by which I should ruin all my rising hopes; and how right my friends turned out to be, everybody now knows.'
The effect of such discouraging opinions was considerably counteracted by the success of Pickwick," which was real and everywhere noticeable. 'Judges on the bench and boys in the street, gravity and folly, the young and the old, those who were entering life and those who were quitting it, alike found it to be irresistible.' Thomas Carlyle told Mr. Forster the anecdote of a solemn clergyman who had been administering ghostly consolation to a sick person, and who, as he left the room, heard the sick person ejaculate, Well, thank God, ' Pickwick' will be out in ten days, any way!" Mary Russell Mitford, in a letter to a friend advising her to borrow the "Pickwick Papers," informed her that "Sir Benjamin Brodie takes it to read in his carriage, between patient and patient; and Lord Denman studies Pickwick' on the bench while the jury are deliberating." Lord Chief Justice Campbell once told Dickens that he would prefer the honor of having written that book to the honors which his professional exertions had obtained for him; and Harriet Martineau considered it to be scarcely surpassable in humor.
During the twelve years succeeding the novelist's death more than four million volumes of his works were sold in England alone, and a long way the first on this astonishing list stands "Pickwick''! Nor has Mr. Pickwick's popularity been confined to English-speaking people; for translations have been published, from time to time, in France, Germany, Italy, Russia, Sweden, Hungary, Holland, Denmark, and probably in many other European if not Asiatic countries. In 1838, the year following the completion of the first English edition, it was pirated in Van Diemen's Land, and there issued with litho graphed copies of the original illustrations. In England, "Pickwick" has gone through many editions, the cheapest being that recently offered to the public by an enterprising firm of stationers at the price of one penny! The first issue is naturally the rarest and most valuable, and a perfect set of the
twenty parts, as issued, fetches an almost prohibitive price. The sum of £28 was recently paid, in the salerooms, by an enthusiastic collector for such a copy, which is nearly unique in respect to condition and general perfection.
An examination of a number of copies of presumably first editions of "Pickwick" results in the discovery that each varies somewhat from the other. This is especially noticeable in the illustrations; and it can be readily understood when it is explained that the enormous demand for impressions necessitated the re-etching of the plates, which showed signs of deterioration after a certain number had been printed. When "Phiz," for this reason, reproduced his designs, he availed himself of that opportunity of improving them, both in composition and detail. The first impressions may be distinguished from those which followed by the absence of engraved titles, and collectors must be careful to observe that the original parts should contain the Seymour and Buss plates as etched by those artists, and not merely the reproductions by Phiz."
In concluding this brief résumé of the history of Pickwick,' we cannot resist noting the various changes in our social life which have occurred during the half-century that has elapsed since the completion of the work, nor fail to observe how the physiognomy of the London streets, as described in its pages, differs from the London of today. In the interests of the study of the history of civilization," writes Mr. Sala, "it is well worth the while of the inquirer-leaving, for the nonce, the literary merits of the performance entirely on tirely on one side one side to plod carefully through the pages of 'Pickwick,' and mark the many and important changes which have taken place in our national manners since the book made its appearance. It is the fashion to decry Dickens, and to predict that "Pickwick," in consequence of these alterations in our social customs, will lose its hold upon public favor; but we venture to agree with Mr. Sala, when he says that there are people who, like the face of the Queen on the postagestamps, never grow older. They are eternal; for they are the children of Genius; and it matters little if the por
trait of Mr. Pickwick were surmounted by a towering periwig, or encircled by an Elizabethan ruff, or draped in a Roman toga, it would still be one of those por
traits which break Time's heart, and make Death gnaw his bony digits in despair."-Temple Bar.
BY E. GÉRARD.
Though each of these half-dozen races is as virtually different from the other five as an Englishman is unlike a Frenchman, or a Pole differs from a Spaniard, though each, in possessing its own religion, customs and superstitions, its individual interests and aspirations, well deserves the attention of any ethnologist, there are two which seem to me of peculiar and paramount interest, as embodying the spirit of the past and of the future in sharp and effective contrast. In the one we have the memory, in the other the promise of a noble manhood, for if the Saxons were men but yester day, so the Roumanians will be men to-morrow; and while the former are rapidly degenerating into mere fossil antiquities, physically deteriorated from constant intermarriage, and morally opposed to any sort of progress involving amalgamation with the surrounding races, so the latter will be at their prime a few generations hence, when they have had time to shake off the habits of slavery and have learned to recognize their own value.
These Saxons, whom we find to-day living in isolated colonies all over Transylvania, appear to have come hither about seven centuries ago at the invitation of the Hungarian king, Geysa II. In thus summoning German colonists to replenish the scantily peopled land, the Hungarian king displayed wisdom and forethought far in advance of his time, as was proved by the result. It was a bargain by which both sides were equally benefited, and consequently induced to keep the contract, for while the Germans obtained freedom which they could not have in their own country, so their presence was a guarantee to the monarch that this province would not be torn from his crown.
The question of what precise part of the German Fatherland was the home of these outwanderers is enveloped in some obscurity. They have retained no certain records to guide us to a conclusion, and German chroniclers at that time make no mention of their departure. Doubtless the Crusades, which were then engrossing every mind, caused these emigrations to pass comparatively unnoticed. Only a sort of vague floating tradition is preserved to this day in many of the Transylvanian villages, where, on winter evenings, some old grandam, shrivelled and bent, sitting ensconced behind the blue-tiled stove, will relate to the listening grandchildren crowding around her knees, how many, many hundred years ago their ancestors once dwelt on the sea-shore, next to the mouth of four rivers, which all flowed out of a larger and mightier river. In this shadowy description, probably the river Rhine is to be recognized, the more so that in the year 1195 these German colonists are, in a yet existing document, referred to as Flanderers. The name of Sachsen (Saxons), as they now call themselves, was only much
later used as their general designation. Although the Hungarian kings kept their given word to the emigrants right nobly, yet these latter had much to suffer, both from Hungarian nobles jealous of their privileges, and from the more ancient inhabitants of the soil, the Wallachians, who, living in the mountains in a thoroughly barbaric state, used to make frequent raids down into the plains and valleys, there to pillage, burn and murder whatever came in their way. If we add to this the frequent invasions of Turks and Tartars, it is a positive marvel how this handful of Germans, brought into a strange land and surrounded by enemies on all sides, should have maintained their independence and preserved their individuality under such combination of circumstances. They built churches and fortresses, they founded schools and guilds, they made their own laws and elected their own judges; and, in an age when Hungarian nobles could scarcely read or write, these little German colonies were so many havens of civilization amidst a howling wilderness of ignorance and barbarism.
Whoever has lived among these Transylvanian Saxons, and has taken the trouble to study them, must have remarked that not only seven centuries' residence in a foreign land has made them lose none of their identity, but that they are in fact plus catholiques que le pape-that is to say, more thoroughly Teutonic than the Germans living today in the original Fatherland; and it is just because of the adverse circumstances in which they were placed, and of the opposition which met them on all sides, that these people have kept themselves so conservatively unchanged. Feeling that every step in another direction would be a step toward an enemy, finding that every concession they made was in danger of becoming the link of a captive's chain, no wonder they clung stubbornly, tenaciously, blindly, to every ancient custom and superstition, to each peculiarity of language and costume in a manner which has probably not got its parallel in history. Left on their native soil, and surrounded by friends and countrymen, these people would undoubtedly have followed the current of time, and have changed as
other nations have changed. Their isolated position and the peculiar circumstances of their surroundings have kept them what they were. Like a faithful portrait taken in the prime of life, the copy still goes on showing the bloom of the cheek and the light of the eye long after Time's destroying hand, withering the original, has caused it to lose all resemblance to its former self; and it is with something of the feeling of gazing at such an old portrait that we contemplate these German people, who dress themselves to-day like old bas-reliefs of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, and continue to hoard up provisions within the fortified church-walls as in the days when besieged by Turk or Tartar.
From an artistic point of view, these Saxons are decidedly an unlovely race, having something unfinished and wooden in their general appearance. Looking at them, I always felt myself irresistibly reminded of the figures of Noah and his family out of a cheap-a very cheaptoy Noah's ark. Nor is their expression an agreeable one, something hard and grasping, avaricious and mistrustful, characterizing them as a rule. this is scarcely their fault, their expression, like their character, being but the natural result of circumstances, the result of seven centuries' stubborn resistance and warfare. The habit of mistrust developed almost to an instinct cannot so quickly be got rid of, even if there be no longer cause to justify it. This defensive attitude toward strangers manifested by the Saxons makes it, however, difficult to feel prepossessed in their favor. Taken in the sense of antiquities, they are, no doubt, extremely interesting, but viewed as living men and women they are not attractive, and though one cannot help admiring the solid virtues and independent spirit which have kept them what they are, yet somehow they contrive to make these very virtues disagreeable, and to appear to disadvantage beside their less civilized, less educated, and less scrupulous neighbors the Roumanians.
It is interesting to trace by what means these Saxons have contrived to keep themselves intact from all outward influences. Not without difficulty, as we see by ancient chronicles, has their costume been kept thus rigidly un
changed, for here, like elsewhere, even among these quiet, practical, prosaic, and unlovely people, the demon of vanity has been at work, and much eloquence was expended from the pulpit, and many severe punishments had to be prescribed, in order to subdue the evil spirit of fashion threatening to spread over the land at various times. So in 1651 we find a whole set of dress regulations issued by the bishop of one of the Transylvanian districts, of which here are a few samples :
1. The men shall wear neither blue nor yellow boots, nor shall the women venture to approach the holy sacrament or the baptismal font in red shoes; and whosoever conforms not to this regulation shall be refused admittance to church.
2. All imitations of the Hungarian dress in the matter of waistcoats, braids, galloons, etc., are proscribed to the
5. The women shall avoid all that is superfluous in dress, nor shall they make horns upon their heads. Rich veils shall only be worn by such as are entitled to them. Neither shall any woman wear gold cords beneath her veil, not even if she be the wife of a gentleman. Silk caps with gold stars are not suitable for every woman. More than two handsome jewelled pins shall no woman wear; and if she require more than two for fastening her veil, let her take small pins. Not every one's child is entitled to wear corals round its neck. woman copy the dress of noble dames, for it is not suitable for us Saxons.
6. Let the Herren Töchter (gentle
*This would seem to be an allusion to the Roumanian fashion in certain districts of twisting up the veil in the shape of two horns. NEW SERIES.-VOL. XLV., No. 5
men's daughters) not make the use of gold braids over common, but let them content themselves with honorable fringes. The serving-girls shall go without broad fringes, nor may they purchase silk cords of three yards' length, else they will be stripped off their heads and nailed against the church wall. Nor is it allowed for peasant maids to wear crooked (probably puffed) sleeves.
Apparently these stringent injunctions had the desired effect of keeping female (and male) vanity in check for a time; but scarcely a hundred years later we find a new set of dress rules delivered from another pulpit, and up to this day the undue length of a ribbon, or an excessive number of head-pins, is matter for reproof in every Saxon community.
Another characteristic feature Saxon peasant life which has much contributed to their rigid conservatism, are the different associations or confraternities existing in each village. These consist of the Bruderschaft (brotherhood), the Nachbarschaft (neighborhood), and the Schwesterschaft (sisterhood).
To the first-named institution, Bruderschaft, belong all young men of the parish from the date of their confirmation up to that of their marriage. This community is governed by laws in which the respective duties of its members as citizens, sons, brothers and suitors are distinctly traced out. In their outward form these brotherhoods have some resemblance to the religious confraternities in Catholic countries, and most probably they originated in the same manner; but while these lat-ter have degenerated into mere outward forms, the Saxon Bruderschaften have retained the original spirit of these institutions, which principally consisted in the reciprocal guard their members kept. over each other's morality. The head of the Bruderschaft is called the Altknecht. He is chosen every year, but can be deposed in the interval if he prove unworthy of his post. It is his mission to watch over the other members, keep order and dictate punishments, but when he is caught erring himself the Altknecht incurs a double forfeit. The finable offences are numerous, and are taxed at ten, fifteen, twenty kreutzers and upward, according to the heinousness of the offence. Here are a few of
the delinquencies which are subject to penalty :
1. Carelessness and slovenliness in attire, every missing button having a fine attached to it.
2. Bad manners at table, putting the elbows on the board or striking it with the fist.
3. Irregularity in church attendance. 4. Misbehavior in church, such as yawning, stretching, etc. Also falling asleep during the sermon, a very heavy fine being put upon snoring.
5. Having worn colored hat ribbons, or whistled loudly in the street on a fast day. *
Also the relations of the young men to the fair sex, and the etiquette of dancing and spinning meetings is accurately chalked out for nowhere is village etiquette more strenuously observed than among these Saxon colonists-and there are countless little forms and observances which to neglect or transgress would be as grave as to reverse the respective orders of claret and champagne at a fashionable dinner-party, or for a lady to go to Court without plumes. The laws of precedence are here every whit as clearly defined as among our upper ten thousand, and the punctilio of a spinning-room quite as formal as the ordering of her Majesty's drawing
No youth is permitted to enter the spinning-room in his week-day clothes, and the exact distance the men are allowed to approach the spinning-wheel of any girl is in some villages precisely defined by inches. A fine of ten kreutzers (twopence) is attached to the touching of a maiden's breast-pin, while stealing a kiss always proves a still more expensive amusement.
Dancing usually takes place on Sunday afternoon, either in the village inn,
* After concluding this article I learn from a current newspaper that the late king of Bavaria, whose tragical death was lately in every mouth, attempted to revive in Munich these German brotherhoods such as they used to be in the Middle Ages. He constituted himself the head of the confraternity, and chose the costume to be worn by the members on grand occasions.
These medieval figures, with their wide flapping hats, their pilgrim staffs and cockle shells, were among the most noteworthy figures at the royal funeral.
or in the open air in summer at some convenient spot, under a group of old trees, or a rustic shed erected for the purpose; the permission to dance having each time been formally requested of the pastor by the head of the brotherhood. The couples are often settled beforehand by the Altknecht, and it is not allowed for any youth to refuse the hand of the partner assigned to him. However hot be the weather the men must retain their heavy cloth coats during the first round dance, and only when the music strikes up for the second time does the Altknecht give the signal for lightening the costume by laying aside his own coat and permitting the girls to divest themselves of their uncomfortable high stiff caps.
On his marriage each youth ceases to be a member of the Bruderschaft, on leaving which both he and his bride must pay certain taxes in meat, bread and wine to the confraternity. In some districts it is usual for the young couple to attend the village dances for a period of six months after their marriage, but more usually dancing ceases altogether with matrimony. In one or two villages there prevails a custom of the married women dancing every fourth year only.
After his marriage a man becomes a member of the Nachbarschaft, or neighborhood. Every village is divided into four neighborhoods, each one governed by a head called the Nachbarvater. This second confraternity is regulated much in the same manner as the Bruderschaft, with the difference that the regulations thereof apply more to the reciprocal assistance which neighbors are bound to render each other in various household and domestic contingencies. Thus a man is only obliged to assist those that belong to his Nachbarschaft in building a house, cleaning out wells and extinguishing fires. He must also contribute provisions on christening, wedding, or funeral occasions, and lend plates and jugs for the same.
The Nachbarvater must watch over the order and discipline of his quarter, and enforce the regulations issued by the pastor or by the village maire or Hann, as he is here called. tends even to the interior of each houseThis authority exhold, and he is bound to report to the pastor the names of those who absent