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or otherwise, by those under his command. This
is a very singular fact; and is all the more
curious, inasmuch as young men will move
heaven and earth to obtain nominations to the
army, and will afterwards avoid as much as they
possibly can ever showing themselves in public
in the distinctive dress of their profession. To
hear an English officer talk about the annoyance
of having to wear his full dress (the scarlet
tunic) for a few hours, you would imagine that
this full dress consisted of a heavy suit of
ancient armour. In the main, English officers
perform their duty strictly and well; but their
uniform they dislike and avoid.

The soldiers and non-commissioned officers in
the cavalry are well dressed, but the infantry
are not. They still wear the long trousers, which
have been abolished in the ranks of nearly every
European infantry. And yet, curious enough,
the English volunteer corps wear short trousers
(called knickerbockers), which, with their leather
leggings, is the best marching dress I have seen.
It is better than what is now worn in our
infantry, for it is not so heavy, and is much easier
to put on.

In France we have an idea that in the English
army the soldiers are tyrannised over by
their officers. This is a great mistake. It is
true that one seldom, if everI should perhaps
say neversees an English officer talking with
a soldier or non-commissioned officer, as is often
the case in our army. The customs and rules
of their service forbid it, and in their ranks
there are seldom to be found private soldiers of
the same social standing in civil life as
themselves. This is not the case with us. I have
known many instances where one brother would
be a lieutenant or a captain, and the other a
private, or corporal, or sergeant, in the same
corps. In England this would never be. But
still there is a very great deal of good feeling,
and even of liking, between the different ranks;
and the officers spend freely, from their own
pockets, considerable sums for the amusements
of the men.

There is one thing which I greatly admire in
the English army, and that is the readiness with
which their troops embark for long years of
colonial service. Our men would go singing to
an attack at which two-thirds of their number
most in all probability be swept away by the
enemy’s cannon; but they never would go for
ten or twelve years to India, the Cape of Good
Hope, or New Zealand, as the English soldier
does, without a murmur. The regiment of
hussars which I saw the Prince of Wales
review at Colchester, had among its officers
several men of large fortune, and yet, although
they might have exchanged into other corps
remaining at home, they were all about to
embark in a body for India, where, as I was told,
they would have to do duty for ten years. A
French regiment would have done this gladly, if
there had been any prospect of active service, or
promotion, or glory, but they would never have
done it merely from a stern sense of duty.
This is but another instance serving to show
what a very fine army might be made of British
troops, if a few wholesome changes were
introduced into their system.


DID any one ever see a real human face? I
who ask this question am not a maniac; neither
am I blinder than my neighboursindeed not
so blind as some who persist in taking scarecrows
for heroes, and a bundle of rags for royal
robes of the deepest purple; but though not
insane and not blind, I affirm in sober earnestness
that faces are not to be seen as an everyday
sight in this world, and that what we do
see are for the most part masks, when they are
not blanks.

Is it a face, do you think, that you look at,
when Old Velvetpaws shakes you cordially by
the hand, and congratulates you on your success
in obtaining that appointment which he has
been straining every nerve to secure for his
youngest sonas yet found eligible for nothing?
Old Velvetpaws has the biggest and brightest
black eyes in the worlda pair of lips that
seem to travel up to the very roots of his hair,
so mobile, so expressive, so rich in play of line
and facility of muscle as they are, and a smile
that affects even the tips of his ears, it is so
general and so expansivehe shows a row of
small, white, even teeth when he laughs, and
he laughs long, loud, and oftenbut, bless
your heart! Velvetpaws, though looking all
face, never showed his true physiognomy to
living man since he was a youngster at school,
and got a caning for telling the master he was a
muff. That was a lesson on the value of not
saying all he thought which Velvetpaws never
forgot; and from that day he began the manufacture
of the mask which, with him, does duty
for a human face. For what you see is only a
bit of gutta percha, say, moulded into the likeness
of a jolly, cheery-natured man full of the
milk of human kindness with a grand heading
of cream, and whose heart is an engine working
by centrifugal forceflying outwards in
general love for the whole family of man.
Velvetpaws wears for his mask unselfishness and
universal love: love so universal, and unselfishness
so entire, that he can even congratulate a
successful rival who has carried it over his son,
while fingering a handful of that same son’s
I O Us in his pocket, which he himself will have
to pay if Whitecross-street is to be shunned.
But the real face underneath wears as its signs
the pallid cheek of disappointment, the swollen
brow of anger, the fiery eyes of hate, and the
lifted lip of envy; and when he says, “My dear
boy, I am so very glad of your success! so
deucedly well deserved!” as he presses your
hand with quite paternal cordiality, adding,
Come and take your chop with us to-morrow;
my wife and the girls will be enchanted to see,
you,” he has simply drawn on a mask, and is
speaking through the metal mouthpiece.

If you accept his invitation and go to the

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