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it behoved them, as good stewards, to see
to the administration of strict justice to all
classes of their Indian fellow-men, down to
the most humble. There have been good
deputy-chairmen delivering the very same
sort of well-meant, properly-punctuated
orations, for the last half century; yet Indian
ryots have been all the time starving, and
dying, and rotting on dunghills, like so many
slaughtered jackals.

Whilst the bulk of the Indian population
remain thus degraded and helpless, it is worse
than idle to expect them to undertake new
agricultural projects. Why should those poor
wretches grow cotton for our factories?  What
would they gain? It is a mockery to talk of
giving them railroads to Bombay and
Calcutta, when they have no footpath to common
justice. What is steam to them, who
dare not eat the very food they grow, lest the
great zemindar should find one grain the less
within his ample store! What need have
they of cotton cloths from Manchester, or
wares from Birmingham? And yet these
millions, if they took but half the goods from
us which South Americans consume, would
want each year not less than forty millions
sterling worth beyond their present purchases.


NOUGHTENBOROUGH is a promising city on
the banks of the Salmon, surrounded by a
goodly neighbourhood of fair fields and pleasant
walks, and open in all directions to clear
sun and air. It is half-commercial,
half-fashionable.There is a sprinkling of good
families, who live reputably, and give pleasant
parties without seeking to " make a dash "
above their neighbours. Hence, there is
sufficient demand for blanc-mange and cracker
bonbons to enable a pastrycook to pick up a
snug fortune in twenty years or so. Alderman
Cracknell was that fortunate pastrycook. He
had amassed a very pretty property; insomuch
that nobody was surprised when he
became the Mayor of Noughtenborough.

But Cracknell was not merely a pastrycook
and a mayor he:was a conscientious
and kind-hearted man. He had several
children, and those who saw him heading the
family procession to the old parish church on
a Sunday, or reading the Bible to the same
little assembly every evening before bed-time,
could not but respect the steady industry
that had surrounded his children with every
comfort, and the still higher sentiment that
directed their feelings of gratitude to its proper
object. "Only a pastrycook," or " Risen from
nothing," were expressions of envy he did
not care a bun about.

Our Mayor gave away much that people
knew of, and a great deal more that no one
but the receiver ever heard of. He was liberal,
also, in matters connected with church
repairs; although he had not the smallest
anxiety about mediaeval revivals. The one
great wish he had at heart was the education
of the poor. He had already built one or two
schools, almost at his own expense, and he
looked sharply after everybody connected with
them. Every poor boy or girl in the place
knew the Mayor, we might almost say,
personallya knowledge which neither the livery
of an alderman nor the title of mayor had
ever tended to distance.

Nor was this taste for education a mere
joining in a popular cry, or the result of
a desire to depress the higher classes by
elevating the low; for Mr. Cracknell, in his
earlier and humble capacity of assistant to
the old firm of Gun & Co., Belgravia, London,
had always been a seeker after a better class
of knowledge than two years at a day-school
could have furnished. Because his time and
opportunities had been small, his employment
of them had been more earnest; and, as his
position gradually bettered, when he
embarked, after much struggling and rigid
economy, in business " on his own account," he
kept increasing his application with his
leisure. Hence, at the age of fifty-one the
Mayor of Noughtenborough was a man of
varied and useful information, as well digested
as acquired, and with powers of thought and
intelligence which, while they had never
raised him " above his business," had made
him the sought companion of many men
moving in a superior class. His retirement
from business had now broken down every
prejudice, even on the part of many families,
who had only associated the name of Cracknell
with wedding breakfasts, lent plate, and
pound-cake hedgehogs.

The Mayor was not a deep linguist. The
small smattering of Latin which he had picked
up at Park-house " Commercial and Classical"
Academy, had not been suffered to dwindle
away, and he had scrambled together some
French at an evening class, and had
subsequently learnt to write, read, and speak that
language thoroughly well. But he was an
encyclopaedia of general social knowledge and
anecdote. Furthermore, he understood the
law more perfectly than a great many of its
practitioners; but on " Church Antiquities "
he was tremendous. It was his pet subject,
and his knowledge of the law was rather

sought with reference thereunto. He was

pathetic on the desecration of old cathedrals;
and indignant that places destined for the
worship of God should be degraded into show
places for the emolument of the lay or clerical
proprietors. He could not conceive why
a few dozen people, crammed into a narrow,
ill-warmed, ill-ventilated " choir," formed a
fitting congregation in a building constructed
to hold thousands. He could not help
wondering why there were grand organs in many
of the London churches, which were confined
and ill-adapted to display the power of the
instruments; while those in many of the
cathedrals were small, out of repair, and

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