The Contributors' Club

LONGER ago than it is important to state, we found ourselves, after our first trip on the Rhine and a pleasant visit to Wiesbaden (that was before it was converted and died), in the station at Frankfort, on our way to Baden-Baden.

There were four of us in the compartment of the railway carriage, the other two being French. Looking out upon the platform on which people who were late comers were running about anxiously hunting for seats, I thought I saw a face that could not be mistaken. Stepping to the door, it seemed only an act of politeness to say to the person who had drawn my attention, " If you are looking for a seat, you will find room in here.” With a hearty “ Thank you ! ” he at once got into our compartment, and made himself comfortable in two seats.

Our last comer was not of a particularly remarkable appearance, per se. Rather heavy and massively built, well up in years, of a ruddy complexion and a knowing look, he foreshadowed that he might not be an unpleasant traveling companion. Excepting his defective nose, he strongly reminded me of that genial and whole-souled man and writer, Dr. John Brown, of Edinburgh, author of Rab and His Friends, upon whom I once had the impudence to call, unprovided with a letter of introduction. The defective nose of our last comer was a blemish on his fine face, but if it could have been re-formed or mended the world would have been dissatisfied, for it was one of the marks by which it knew William Makepeace Thackeray. Some English writer has remarked that he found Americans in their own country and on their travels inclined to be taciturn. I have seen it repeated indefinitely that the English traveler on the Continent is worse than taciturn. I have not found it so, whether it be in Russia or Africa. Still, it might be said that there was some risk in inviting any Englishman, possibly Thackeray, to a tête-à-tête, for. that’s what my action amounted to. If I had known what I afterwards learned from a friend, that Thackeray, in crossing the Atlantic, held everybody at arm’s-length, probably my alacrity in attempting something like an “ interview ” would have been very much less. But on that score there was nothing to regret. I really don’t know what is said about Thackeray’s moods. He had a life-long sorrow, and was frequently, like Balzac, driven to write to distract his mind. At this time, in any event, we were in luck. With a courage (if it was not something else) that we have never ceased to wonder at, we suppressed (perhaps did not feel) any movement indicating that we felt overshadowed by the presence of a greater than a king. Perhaps his behavior was a direct recognition of the civility shown him ; at any rate, a capital lunch, ample for two, and an Englishman besides, completed his conquest ad HocHeimer.

When I saw Mr. Thackeray pass our carriage door I knew him, and therefore captured him. Desirous of making way for him, I remarked to my fellowtravelers, a Frenchman and his wife, “ I would like to make a place for Mr. Thackeray.” The fact that I named Mr. Thackeray made no impression, apparently, upon my French friends. I annotated my remark by saying, “ Mr. Thackeray, the celebrated English author.” Same indifference. Having hailed Mr. Thackeray and got him installed, as a preliminary remark I referred to my effort to explain his status to my neighbors, and to the impression I had made. He laughed, and said, “ Oh, it takes fifty years for an English reputation to travel to France.” (Indeed, something strongly confirming that view happened only last year. To a congress of literary men called to meet in Paris, invitations were sent out to foreign authors of distinction to he present, and among them to Thackeray and Dickens!) He discussed the reasons for the American Revolution, — claiming that the resistance of our ancestors to the Stamp Act was unjustifiable. I am afraid the case for the defense was weak, for at that time, being a college graduate, I think I had studied almost everything a man ought to know for his literary salvation except American history. The interest of the conversation centred on his treatment of women in his works. It being represented that he took a low view of female character, his reply literally was, “ Would you have me describe them other than they are?” That of course provoked a discussion as to the facts. He became communicative about himself ; he spoke of his candidacy for Parliament, what it cost him, — a large amount of money, which he named. He stood for the University of Oxford, and was beaten by Sir Robert Walter Cardwell, who was afterwards, I believe, unseated for bribery. I asked him how they took his treatment of the Georges in England, in those killing lectures. He said the aristocracy had cut him. He spoke particularly of Lord Wensleydale, the Baron Parke of the lawyers. He and Wensleydale had long been friends, “ but after the lectures,” said Thackeray, “ he cut me completely.” It may be recollected that Wensleydale was of obscure origin, and was made a “ law ” lord. An attempt was made to make him a life peer only; but that step raised an outcry on account of the innovation. The matter was bridged over by making him a full peer, and as he had only a daughter it amounted to about the same thing.

I remarked to Mr. Thackeray that he had ventured no criticisms upon our people after his return home ; and that I should be glad to know what displeased him most in our ways. He replied promptly, “ The abuse heaped by the newspapers on one another ; and it was n’t cleverly done, with the exception of a Philadelphia editor, and I told them to keep watch on him.” If Mr. Thackeray could come again, what would he say ? The remarks which were, perhaps, of the deepest interest related to the style of authors. One sentence can never be forgotten : “ If I were to write as I would like, I would adopt the style of Fielding and Smollett; but society would not tolerate it.” He went on to say that Sir Walter Scott had done much to vitiate public taste by his romantic style.

The discussion now going on between realism or naturalism and sentimentalism or idealism is here foreshadowed. Of course we have to condemn much that Fielding and Smollett wrote, and what Zola writes, because they speak too plainly, grossly, if you like ; but it remains essentially true that their style, as a style, is now fighting for recognition with some chance of success.

Thackeray has, to my mind, not only been influenced in his style by his models, Fielding and Smollett, but by the style in which fiction is treated by the best French authors. The condensed, incisive, epigrammatic, and natural style of Thackeray is clearly characteristic of the modern French school of fiction.

When the time came for us to change cars, he going south, we stopping at Baden-Baden, Mr. Thackeray was kind enough to say that he regretted the separation, and that he would be glad to meet us again.

— What shall we say of the much behandled Bartlett, who includes among his Americanisms “by the skin of his teeth ” ? Connecting it with the Book of Job, may we not call it rather an Uzism ? “ Don’t indulge in slang, my dear,” I recently heard a careful mother say to her daughter, as the young lady expressed her satisfaction in having escaped an evil by the " skin of her teeth.”

— A peculiar feature has appeared in various retail trades which may be regarded as an encouraging symptom of the artistic growth of the country. Formerly, when a frugal housewife bought a pound of tea, she had nothing in view save carnal gratification and the stimulation of sisterly good-fellowship. A tea-store at the present day offers an aspect widely different from that of similar establishments in by-gone years. You will see chests and Chinese paraphernalia if you examine closely ; but these vulgar details are eclipsed by pictures flaring with color, framed as samples, and unframed for customers. The frugal housewife of A. D. 1860 buys her tea by the quantity, and sweetens it with a chromo. This is a familiar illustration, and undoubtedly the fact will be conceded that the average retail dealer studies not so much how to procure the best wares, but, subordinating earthy considerations, strives only to tickle the æsthetic palate of the community. The tendency is, however, still confined within retail limits. Probably it will ascend into the wholesale departments, and in time commercial quotations will be given not in commodities, but in chromos. None but stubborn conservatives will have any misgivings concerning this new phase of business activity. Taking it for a text, an essayist with the true German spirit in his soul might show how we are rapidly approaching a state of general culture which, in popular reverence for beauty, shall surpass that of the Athenians.

Perhaps it was from analogy that a similar innovation gave a new impulse to one branch of religious work. Time was when canvassers for Sunday-schools led a hard and bitter life. Fortunately their compensation was in no wise dependent upon capita results, but was fixed and as certain as many worldly things. Nevertheless, they toiled and took little. Vainly they threw out scraps of Hebrew history as bait; the scattering of crumbs broadcast instilled no appetite for the rest of the loaf.

The skilled missionary of the present day in the first place chooses his season. He does not address himself to the inborn craving for the marvelous, but is content with a single, forcible argument. Upon the distended retina of juvenile imagination he imprints an intoxicating vision, — a tree, tall and green and fragrant, that blossoms with light and bears strange fruit in late December!

The energetic preaching of this argument has met with great success, and, if one selects the proper time to happen into one or two of our mission Sundayschools, he will be convinced that they are in a very healthy and vigorous condition. It is true, the story is related that of a class of eight boys who had been studying the biography of Jezebel during the month of December, and left her at the height of her success, only one was in at her death early in January, when she got her deserts. The other seven probably never heard what became of her. Perhaps they formed an erroneous and harmful impression that that wicked woman lived peacefully to a good old age.

But with those whose function ends with the actual gathering in, facts of this nature have no significance, and the only question is one of intrinsic morality. In the subject first alluded to this question, happily, does not arise. It is certainly unobjectionable to appeal to the higher instincts of mankind as a persuasion to proper regard for more homely wants and desires. But, when you come to the converse of the operation, tender consciences may well pause and hesitate in the decision. It might even be said that the offering of sensual allurements as an inducement to religious observance is essentially Mohammedanism. But perhaps a sufficient answer is that such inducements are the only ones that will avail with Arabs of all nationalities.

— A few days ago I happened to pick up an old and well-nigh forgotten tale by George Sand, entitled Lavinia. It opened in a very spirited fashion, but had somehow a curiously familiar air. I could not rid myself of the impression that I had read it all before, and yet I was positive that the story under its present title had never come to my notice. I had not progressed far, however, before the mystery was solved: it was Owen Meredith’s Lucile in French prose. The names, to be sure, had been metamorphosed, but the characters, whom they served as thin and ineffectual disguises, were essentially the same. Lord Alfred Vargrave in Lavinia is named Lionel, and his betrothed, whom he is just about to marry, Miss Margaret Ellis instead of Miss Darcey. The convenient cousin John is with George Sand the cousin of the heroine, and not of Lionel, but he is the same easy-going, devil-may-care fellow, though he is masked with the name of Henry. Even the situations are, with few exceptions, conscientiously copied and whole pages of the most animated epigrammatic dialogue are plagiarized, word for word, except where the exigencies of rhyme or metre require a deviation from the French original.

The first chapter in both books opens with a letter from the heroine, who has formerly been engaged to the hero, demanding that her letters be returned. In both cases ten years have elapsed since their last meeting, and it is needless to add that the result of the perilous rendezvous is the same. To convince the reader how daring the plagiarism is, I choose at random the scene in which Lord Alfred comes to fulfill Lucile’s demand in regard to the old love-letters, and print side by side George Sand’s French and Owen Meredith’s English text: —


Cette chambrette blanche et parfuinee avail, cu vérité, et comme à son insu, un air de rendezvous ; mais elle semblait aussi le sanctuaire d’un amour virginal et pur. Les bougies jetaient une clarté timide; les fleurs semiblaient farmer modestement leur sein à la lumière; aucun vêtement de femme, aucun vestige de coquetturie ne s’était oublié à trainer sur les meubles; seulement un bouquet de pensées fletries et un gant blanc decousu gisaient cote a côte sur la che-

minée. Lionel, poussé par un mouvement irrésistible, prit le gant et le froissa dans ses mains. C’était comine 1'étreinte convulsive et froide d’un dernier adieu. Il prit le bouquet sans parfum, le contempla un instant, lit une allusion amère aux flours que le composaient, et le rejets brusquement loin de lui. Lavinia avait-elle posé la ee bouquet aver. le dessein qu’il fût comments par son ancien amant ?

Lionel s’approcha de la fenêtre, et dcarta les rideaux pour faire diversion, par le spectacle de la nature, à l'humeur qui le gagnait de plus en plus.



This white little fragrant apartment, ’t is true

Seemed unconsciously fashioned for some rendezvous ;

But you felt by thh sense of its beauty reposed, ’T was the shrine of a life chaste and calm. Half unclosed In the light slept the flowers; alt was pure and at rest;

All peaceful; all modest ; all seemed self-possessed,

And aware of the siNo vestige nor trace Of a young woman’s coquetry troubled the

place; Not a scarf; not a

shawl; On the mantel-piece merely

A nosegay of flowers, all withered,or nearly, And a little white glove that was torn at the wrist.

Impelled by an impulse too strong to resist, Lord Alfred caught, with a feverish grasp,

The torn glove, and flung it aside with a gasp; It seemed like the thrill of a final farewell,

He took up the nosegay, without bloom or

smell, And inaudibly, bitterly muttered or sighed Some rebuke to the flowers ore he laid it aside.

Had Lucile by design left, the dead flowers there ?

The torn glove ? I know nothing, I cannot declare.


He turned to the window.

A cloud passed the sun; The breeze lifted itself, etc.

I flattered myself that I had been the first to discover this unacknowledged relationship between Lucile and Lavinia ; and I was duly conscious of ray importance at the thought that I held the fate of so exalted a personage as the late viceroy of India in my hands. A friend, however, who is crammed with bibliographical lore, relieved me of this dread responsibility by informing me that the discovery had already been made in England, several years ago, but had for some reason failed to make a sensation. The public and the press seemed rather anxious to hush up the affair; perhaps because it impeached the honor of a British peer, and thus reflected remotely upon the national character. At all events, I have ascertained that on this side of the ocean Lucile is yet generally admired as an original production. Among the many to whom I have communicated my discovery not one was aware that it had been previously made ; and some were even inclined to question the correctness of my conclusions, alleging that in all probability the resemblance was only remote and accidental.

— It is said to be a matter of speculation with naturalists why a turkey flies at a red rag, and bulls are inspired with fury at that splendid color. When they explain this fact, perhaps I shall find out why certain words exasperate me to an equal extent with these weak-minded animals when they see the tint I love best of all. I am supposed to be amiable to the point of folly, but when I encounter the expression “ boyhood days ” my amiability vanishes ; “ olden days ” has the same effect; and if ever I commit murder it will be on some newspaper editor who persists in saying “ an enjoyable time,” and talking of “ mine host” or “ Mr. Smith and lady.”

— In the November Atlantic, somewhere in one of those delightful Letters and Notes from England, Mr. White is surprised to find Madame de Pompadour’s picture with blue eyes and fair hair. He says, “ I had always thought of the haughty, brilliant, scheming favorite of Louis XV. as a tall, dark-haired, dark-eyed woman.” A rather long observation of human beings has driven me to another conclusion. I have found the worst feminine qualities almost invariably allied to the blonde style; not the green or gray eyed blonde, with straight, abundant hair and fresh coloring, but the sallow or pallid being, with light blue eyes and limp or waving hair, — an innocent-looking creature, with feline manners, patte de velours, and such claws ! These are the women who delude and destroy men ; who never forgive an injury or forget a slight; who smile and talk sweetly, and put on airs of meek piety or high art and refinement, but under all are scheming, unprincipled, false to the core. Did not Lucrezia Borgia have golden hair ? Was not Lady Macbeth a Scottish woman, presumably with lint-white locks ? Two of the worst and most brilliant women I ever knew had this style of complexion, and the lovely being whose picture was my childish adoration, who sat simpering over the library shelf in dear old uncle W.’s house, robed in satin and sables, her gold hair curling like a child’s, her sapphire eyes as inscrutable as a deep spring, her rosebud lips soft and fresh as a baby’s, and her taper white fingers crossed in her lap, was a virago, a drunkard, a woman without a symptom of principle, —the mystery and the curse of the old and honorable family she married into. Black-haired and darkeyed women are quick-tempered, electric, generous, jealous probably, but full of relenting, and capable of being coaxed into or out of anything. Weak as to their affections, snappy as to their temper, warm of heart and hot of head, they are never very bad or very good, and are the delightful torment of every man who loves them and whom they do not love too much; but love makes slaves and fools of them, and they are ridiculously constant. It is the clear gray eye, the thick, soft hair of flaxen or brown tint, the bloom of a tea-rose on a delicate skin, that inscribe the certificate of womanly perfection, — “ a sweet assurance given in looks ” that here is the real and ideal wife and mother.

— As to men marrying women older than themselves, are not modern storywriters a little responsible for this ? I believe Dickens’s Dora, to begin with, and a thousand repetitions of the same type, scare young men from giving their lives and homes into the hands of untaught girls, who have no idea of economy or comfort. Perhaps, again, the solution lies in the remark of a certain wicked deacon, who advised one of his friends to marry an old maid because she would always be so grateful!

After all, there is another point : age is not a matter of years altogether, any more than fascination is necessarily beauty; there are some people who never grow old. I have seen one of them, well over sixty, dancing a jig in the nursery, to the screaming delight of her grand-children ; and I have seen, too, a young person of twelve with the forecast and management of sixty even about her paper dolls.

— The masculine world has been racked of late by the breaking of a financial bubblein Boston. It is not, of course, that misplaced confidence and culpable gullibility have never before fallen victim to fraudulent schemers, for “ man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands mourn,” and those who most loudly bewail this latest development can hardly have escaped in person some experience of pecuniary loss from such sources, to say nothing of the “ countless thousands ” of sufferers within their knowledge. In this case the special sting seems to be that the fraud emanated from and entrapped women. It is to be hoped that this legitimate, if somewhat disproportioned, horror will work reform of a pestilent evil in our households. The Nation, in one of the best articles called forth by the Boston catastrophe, makes the schools responsible for the ignorance of these recent sufferers. This is just, so far as the schools go or can be made to go, but is there not back of the schools a certain responsibility so inwrought with the very essence of paternity that it can never be righteously cast off upon our teachers, or clergymen, or statesmen ?

In this matter of “ financial education ” (as in those other weighty matters of morals and manners which we are glad to see begin to insist on their rightful place in the curriculum of our schools) the uttermost that can be done by the most skillful teacher will be disappointing in its results unless backed and supplemented by home - teaching and home-practice. How our common schools, with their twenty minutes’ recitations, can meet the obvious deficiencies of our common homes, in these particulars, is not an easy although an indispensable question for decision in this our day. Many a boy and girl recites glibly in the school-room not alone the Essentials of Grammar, but its most eccentric vagaries, who at home uniformly doubles negatives and divorces substantive and verb. Perhaps nothing short of genius in the teacher and special inspiration in the pupil can suffice to reveal to a child who hears only incorrect and rude speech at home that the rules of his grammar and rhetoric have the remotest connection with the language of his own daily life ; and it would be passing strange if a similar obtuseness as to the practical application of manuals of morals, manners, and finance should not prevail were these to be added to the list of text-books. But it is in behalf of the better half of our households that this plan is offered, — better in wealth and intelligence and moral sense.

“ I am amazed at the presumption of parents,” cried the principal of a famous young ladies’ boarding-school. “ They send me their children again and again with the cool demand, ‘ Make my daughter orderly,’or ‘ truthful,’ or ' gentle ; ’ requiring from me during six months or a year of less intimate association and hampered opportunity what they have failed to accomplish for her in sixteen years or more of closest contact, and with every advantage of supreme authority and interest ! ”

But confining ourselves to the subject of financial education among our better families, where can it be so safely and thoroughly taught as at home and by the father, who, either as the custodian of inherited wealth, or the alert maker of his own fortune, has hourly opportunity not only to instruct theoretically, but also to point the moral and adorn the tale? It will require thoughtfulness and long patience to impart trustworthy theories, and much anxiety and occasional loss in subjecting them to the test of illustrative experiment, but surely the result will more than justify the outlay. It is easier for the husband and father not only to withhold this effort, but to confide all his business affairs solely to the grim silence of his safe and bank-book, and to lavish or dole (according to his natural disposition or passing mood) money for family bills without any word of instruction therewith; but he often purchases with this momentary ease to himself sad complications for his unenlightened family after his death, if not for himself through their ignorance beforehand. A man has no right to bring into such a world as this, and leave behind him when his own life ends, beings to whom money will he a necessity, without doing his uttermost to assure to them not only a competence, but the requisite knowledge and practice to keep and expend it wisely. Yet from thoughtlessness, misapprehension, or deliberate design the majority of men act all their lives on the plan of concealing from wife and children their true financial condition, and cherishing ignorance of money matters in these limp dependents, as if that very ignorance were the Palladium of their safety !

Surely a man should not dare to make any woman his wife and the mother and trainer of his children who, though she may come to him ignorant through her parents’neglect, has not sufficient capacity to receive and profitably exercise his wise instructions in regard to the intrinsic value and proper use of money. If she be too dull or too treacherous to share his confidence in pecuniary affairs, alas for him and for those who shall be born of them in every graver concern of their joint lives ! —

“ What boots it at one gate to make defense,
And at another to let in the foe ? ”

But not a few men who would not think of affirming that " a mare could not be taught to pace,” and do not really doubt woman’s capacity and loyalty, yet act as if they so doubted in money matters at least. Their own families know less than the merest acquaintance of the amount and disposition of their property until death or financial ruin reveals all the past, and thrusts upon wife and child frightful, because unfamiliar, duties in the present and dread responsibilities for the future, for all of which they are utterly unfitted by previous education and habit. Not seldom in these last years of multiplied bankruptcy and defalcation has the bitter cry been wrung from the women of the stricken household, " If I had only known that we were living beyond our rightful income ! ” and again and again have these women, who were not trusted nor instructed financially in prosperity, taught themselves speedily, in adversity, lessons of thrift and the wise exercise of talents which if earlier learned and employed might have saved husbands and homes.

Sometimes through arbitrariness,— the determination to keep the reins of power in his own hands, — but oftener through mere short-sightedness and thoughtlessness, the majority of well-todo men seem to go on through life ridiculing the stupidity and recklessness of women in business concerns, and yet never vouchsafing the least effort to make the women of their own households otherwise minded in these vital particulars. Suddenly death or hopeless insanity snatches the head of the family away, and the wife whom he had never allowed the least independent action in the investment or expenditure of funds, nor taught even how to draw a check or balance accounts, has thrust upon her, at a time when she is bewildered and broken by the loss of her husband, the entire burden of his property and liabilities. It seems at best a cruel kindness for one deliberately to make his wife executrix of property in regard to which, during their long life together, he has not made her the intelligent confidant and well-advised partner.

If your wife is incapable or incorrigible in money matters, it may or may not be your fault, but you cannot shirk the responsibility of your children’s education to better opinions and practice. Better for your beloved daughter will it be to learn (even at the cost of some fortune and comfort on your part, and of much blundering and loss on hers), by practice under your watchful eye, how to expend a fixed income, with wise adjustment of all claims, personal, social, and charitable, than to let her go blindly on into a far more lavish inheritance without such instruction and practice. Let our schools teach the forms and minute technicalities of finance as indispensably as the multiplication-table, but let every able and loving father make sure, as the prosperous days go on, that his heirs thoroughly understand this wisdom of the schools, and most of all his own object-teaching at home.

— One of the most curious transformations which have come over the spirit of English fiction is the change in its attitude toward Americans. Time was when an American who ventured into an English novel did so only to be sneered at, or at best to cut a grotesque figure: he was welcome in a low-comedy character to make fun, but as the heroic leading man making love he would be insupportable. This is all done away with, and the comic American has been thrust into the background, although he has not yet wholly disappeared. The favorite American now in English fiction is an American lady, and she is an example to all her British sisters. She is young and lovely and clever and highly cultivated and exquisitely dressed and immensely rich, and altogether charming. In Mr. Trollope’s latest novel she plays a chief part; in Miss Amelia B. Edwards’s Lord Brackenbury, where she is less important, she triumphs over the ill-mannered and antiquated representative of the English aristocracy; she has even come forward on the stage in Mr. H. J. Byron’s slight but amusing comedy, An American Lady, and in an English adaptation of M. Sardou’s Rabagas. Curiously enough, the corning of this amiability of the English novelist toward the American lady has been almost simultaneous with an extreme and growing discourtesy on the part of the American novelist toward the English gentleman. In Mr. Howells’s novels and Mr. James’s, and even in the photographic Confessions of a Frivolous Girl, the Englishman is pilloried for his ill-breeding. This is one of the sore points which Mrs. Sutherland Orr dwelt upon in her essay in the Contemporary Review on Mr. Howells and the International Novelists. From a study of the current fiction of the two countries, one might almost think that an English author describes an American whenever he wishes to evoke a charming vision, and that an American author. whenever he has need of a character without manners or with bad manners, unconsciously makes him an Englishman. The especial charge against the English traveler here seems to be that while he is here he “ makes himself at home,” — doing things, indeed, that he would hesitate to do at home; and that when he is at home, and his American host happens to be in England also, he is forgetful of his obligations and scarcely courteous. This accusation, that the traveling Briton, when once he gets him home again, is careless about requiting the hospitality shown him when abroad, is nothing new ; I fancy that dozens of instances could be found scattered throughout the pages of English literature during the past century ; but we doubt if the accusation has ever been more plainly presented than it is in Smollett’s Humphry Clinker, which, it may be well to recall, was originally published in 1771. The passage is as follows: —

“ Certain it is, we are generally looked upon by foreigners as a people totally destitute of this virtue [hospitality] ; and I never was in any country abroad where I did not meet with persons of distinction who complained of having been unhospitably used in Great Britain. A gentleman of France, Italy, or Germany who has entertained and lodged an Englishman at his house, when he afterwards meets his guest in London, is asked to dinner at the Saracen’s Head, the Turk’s Head, the Boar’s Head, or the Bear, eats raw beef and butter, drinks execrable port, and is allowed to pay his share of the reckoning.”

Surely here is a frank confession, and a century old, too; even the Englishman we are told of in the International Episode did not behave worse than this. — Several of my books are in the Tauchnitz Series, and this remark has more than once been made to me : " Does the law leave you helpless in this matter ? Is there no way to keep Tauchnitz from pirating your books ? Can’t he be compelled to pay for them ? ” And when I reply, “ Baron Tauchnitz never pirates anybody’s books; never publishes a book without first getting the consent of the author or the author’s heir ; and publishes nobody’s book without paying for it,” the inquirer always seems surprised, and generally a little incredulous. But he has heard nothing but the truth, nevertheless. Tauchnitz is rigid about paying for every book he uses, and about having consent to publish. And more, the great German publisher not only pays for a book once, but — gird up the loins of your credulity, and prepare, for I am going to apply a good deal of a strain to it — there have been occasions when he has asked leave to pay for it a second time! Try to conceive of that, now, in this castiron commercial age ! I received a letter from him lately, in which he says, “ Your last book having sold more largely than I had calculated upon, I have the pleasure of forwarding to you my check for an additional amount.” He had bought the book six or eight months before, and paid for it: in adding fifty per cent. to the original amount, he was paying what he conceived to be a moral debt. Legally, he owed me nothing. This is a man who should be spared harsh names and hasty conclusions.