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is, the raven mates for life; home ties are very dear to him. Twenty-nay, fifty years hence, if all goes well, this valley will harbor the same pair of ravens. A long pull, half scramble. half climb, takes the cragsman to within a yard or two of the nest, which was descried some time ago resting on an overhung ledge-a great basketful of bleached sticks, harmonizing to perfection with their environment. A big effort carries him right up to it, and, breathlessly, he takes stock of the six beautifully marked eggs-a big clutch, a real prize! Evidently this betokens great plenty of food on the hills; possibly it promises a rare lambing season, for there is little doubt that the number of eggs a bird lays depends somewhat on the probable abundance or paucity of provender for the expected young.
Let the cragsman examine his prize with care; it is not every one's lot to study a raven's belongings in the sanctuary of his home. Let him note how smoothly the rugged cradle is packed with hair-tufts and wool; the lining is smooth to slipperiness. The eggs are slippery, too, and it behooves him to handle them cautiously. Let him take one, if he will; the ravens will not frustrate him after so toilsome a climb. The Gentleman's Magazine.
Besides, in days to come, when limbs are cramped and thews no longer supple, it will serve to remind him of halcyon times in a pleasant land, when youth and strength thought nothing of the terrors of precipice and giddy summit. Both ravens are now full of fight. The male settles on a peak only a few yards distant, affording a delightful spectacle. His muscles, tense as whipcord, can be imagined rippling beneath his black mantle; his elongated neck-feathers, suggestive of hackles, flutter in the breeze, and his great beak croaks out the call of imminent battle. There he stands gruffly defiant, as much as to say, "How dare you be here? Back to your lowlands!" Then he dashes close past his unwelcome guest, the crackle of his broad pinions rustling like the swish of a silk skirt. Truly it is worth going miles to see the anger of a
Well, enough. The fisherman grudgingly relinquishes his rocky quarters and seeks his rod and creel. He surveys the latter critically. What! only three small trout, and a perfect fishing day! But there is no regret in his heart for time lost; trout he will find in many places-ravens in comparatively few.
COMMERCE IN WAR AND THE HAGUE CONFERENCE.
Mr. Atherley-Jones's book on “Commerce in War"-a title, by the way, which reminds one of Mr. Castle's work, published some thirty years ago, "Law of Commerce in Time of War"appears opportunely. It ranges over all the chief English authorities. It contains copious extracts from the judg ments of English and American courts as to contrabrand, blockade, the right
of search, and the law of prize. those whose library of reports is small, the volume will be most useful. When the author states his own opinion, which is seldom, he is generally on the side of progress. When he is silent as to the merits of the rules which he expounds, he does not gloss over their defects. It is a pity that the book, admirable in many respects, is
out of touch with modern Continental literature. Calos and Hontefeuille, who are quoted, are the old-world authorities. They do not express the ideas to-day dominant in France and Germany among those likely to be the advisers of foreign Governments as to "commerce in war."
It is not fair to criticize a good book, written with great industry, and with one distinct purpose, because it is not written with another. I am anxious not to fall into this error, while I say how much it is to be regretted that at this time, when the rights of neutrals are about to be considered at the Hague Conference, no one has given that which is so much needed, a critical examination of the rules affecting commerce in time of war in the light of modern necessities; an examination juridical, economical, and moral. There have been some such critical inquiries; but one must go back to the eighteenth century, with its lucid reason and wide outlook, to find an examination which did not start from the assumption that the necessities of war must always be supreme. The critical examination here suggested, which would assume the supremacy of the interests of peace, would be of great value as a guide to diplomatists. would enable them to appraise accurately the rules described in this volume a collection of odds and ends, the survivals of past ages, the outcome in great part, of a policy under which those "cursed neutrals" (to quote a famous English Admiral's phrase) had a bad time of it. "Ye Laws of Land Warfare" are a collection of rough compromises agreed to by States of nearly equal weight-one result, it may be said, of the Balance of Power. The rules in force at sea in time of war have not this merit; they are largely the outcome of the naval predominance of one or two Powers, and they retain elements of barbarism which
have been expelled from other parts of international law. Three men of a high order of intelligence-Stowell, Portalis, and Story-labored to rationalize and systematize these rules-but not to much effect; they still bear trace of their origin in a time when commerce was of small account, and its rights were feebly and timidly asserted. They were interpreted and expounded in the courts of belligerents by judges who unconsciously looked at most questions from the point of the interests of belligerents. Among all
the judges who presided in the chief Prize Courts, I can think of only one, Pemberton Leigh, who was adequately impressed by the gravity of the interests of neutrals. The best-known of those judges, Stowell, had all Blackstone's propensity for finding lofty reasons in the nature of things for any accidental practice of his time. devoted his great acumen to supporting, in a style more Johnsonian than Johnson's, rules, some of which now seem absurd and unjust. He meant to be fair. But he meant also to be patriotic. His Court was worth to his country, one cannot doubt, several ships of the line; and, in reading some of these haughty or disdainful sentences, in which he rejects neutral clauses, one can understand the animosity still felt towards him by foreign jurists, who, acknowledging his commanding talents, believed that the interests of neutrals and of commerce suffered much at his hands.
Such a critical examination as I have indicated would help to guide nations to a reasonable solution of some of the questions discussed by Mr. AtherleyJones and of others-for example, the position of wireless telegraphy and the laying of submarine mines-which he does not deal with, but which are likely to be mooted at the Hague. It is now too late to expect such a guidance. But it is not too late to avert a
serious mistake which there is danger of committing. In the eighteenth century, our rules of warfare at sea were framed with reference to our fears of France. A little later, we had the United States chiefly in view; we insisted upon exercising the right of search with exasperating harshness. Russia was, for a time, the object of alarm; and now, if we are to credit some rumors, no small part of our programme is to be framed with distinct reference to the contingency of a war with Germany. Rights which would give up if we had to consider only France, Russia, and the United States, we are asked to retain, because they might be helpful in a struggle with Germany. Under any circumstances, the policy would be perilous; it would seem to be a blunder, in view of the objection of Germany to discuss the subject of limitation of armaments. It is this distrust of principles, this undisguised opportunism, which gives plausibility to the criticisms of foreign Governments as to England bending rules to meet her interests; which prompts M. Fontin, for example, in his recently-published "Guerre et Marine," to say: "L'Angleterre a toujours fort bon marché des règles du droit international."
One other suggestion, partly prompted by Mr. Atherley-Jones's volume, may be made. There are points in the law of "Commerce in War" as to which Continental rules and practice differ from ours; they chiefly relate to contraband, blockade, and convoys. It is scarcely worth while discussing the question whether the Continental precThe Nation.
edents are more respected than ours; in most cases neither are perfect. It is to be hoped that the instructions of the English representatives will permit them to make large concessions as to all these points; concessions which will involve no real sacrifice, but which will be prized abroad, because, for generations they have been the cause of fierce controversies not always confined to paper, between England and Continental Powers.
I do not expect that at the second Conference the whole body of law as to commerce and war will be put upon a reasonable basis. The technical advisers of our Government, and of other Governments also, may oppose strong objections to many changes which must come when the interests of peace receive full attention. But there is no room for discouragement. We shall see, in all probabilitly, an assertion of the Drago doctrine, and an end thereby of the bullying of small States which do not perform their obligations, a policy seen at its worst in the conduct of England in the Don Pacifico case. An ugly chapter in international history will be closed, let one hope, for ever. For the first time, so far as I know, in the history of diplomacy, there will be an opportunity of fully presenting the claims of neutrals. I say nothing of the larger questions, which the Prime Minister has luminously and impressively discussed in these columns-I have in view only "Commerce in War"-in expressing the belief that something will be accomplished and that much will be begun next June at the Hague.
1 The Living Age, March 23, 1907.
THE POET OF "LES HABITANTS."
It is customary to compare the late W. H. Drummond with the creator of Hans Breitmann, and there is no denying that they possessed the rare gift of psychical mimicry in an equal degree. Indeed, in this respect the author of "A Burgher Don Quixote" is the only rival of the twain. But the literary rule-of-three-as Leland was to the German-Americans. SO was Drummond to the French-Canadianswhich is a commonplace of Transatlantic criticism, is seen to be valueless when we remember that Leland's variant of Panurge was not an American type at all. He was not of the soil as were Parson Wilbur and Hosea Biglow, or even the Yankees invented by Judge Haliburton. He was altogether an alien immigrant; a flamboyant foreigner, in physique, philosophy, habits, ideals, and language. The macaronic jargon of the Hans Breitmann ballads has not the slightest resemblance to Pennsylvania Dutch, or the various forms of Germanized English sometimes heard in Milwaukee, Cincinnati, and the other GermanAmerican cities. In point of fact, it' is a mechanical combination of German, English, and American slang which was the invention of Leland himself. On the other hand, the quaint medium in which Drummond works is a living patois, the everyday language of the habitant or small farmer of Quebec who thinks French before he tries to express his thoughts in English. In a manner of speaking, it is the result of chemical combination between the two Canadian languages. Nor is the verse of Drummond dominated by a single personage comparable with the big, fat, metaphysical, beer-drinking German who solves the infinite "ash von eter
which are out of tone with the effortless simplicity of his verse, and seem at first sight to be the author's conceits, invariably represent old local proverbs slightly adapted to suit the metrical form.
To nine in ten English-speaking Canadians the genesis of Drummond's work, and the perfect self-abnegation (which is lack of originality from one point of view) of the artist, are unknown and unappreciated. To such critics he is merely a popular humorist who wins the laugh, which is not an intellectual thing, by means of verbal trickery. Some of his humorous pieces-"Mon Choual [= Cheval] Castor," "M'sieu Smit'," and "The Wreck
De captinne walk on de fronte deck,
De cook she's name was Rosie,
It is recorded that an English lady re-
But it was not as a token of gratitude for these laughter-provoking rhymes that Dr. Louis Fréchette, the Poet Laureate of the Dominion, handed on to Drummond the complimentary phrase, “path-finder of a new land of song," which Longfellow had given to him. "Qu'il mette en scène," says the one French-Canadian poet who is read in France, after paying this pretty compliment, "le gros fermier fier de son bien ou de ses filles à marier, le vieux médecin de campagne ne comptant plus ses états de service, le jeune amoureux qui rêve au clair de la lune, le vieillard qui repasse en sa mémoire la longue suite des jours révolus, le conteur de légendes, l'aventurier des pays d'en haut,' et même le Canadian exilé qui croit toujours entendre résonner à son oreille le vague tintement des cloches de son village; que le récit soit plaisant ou pathétique, jamais la note ne sonne
faux, jamais la bizarrerie ne dégénère
W'isky Jack, get ready, we drink you!
Or echo the wish of the eldest Jean
But leetle Bateese! Please don't forget