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against the study of war. The seed that was sown in 1839 by giving a wrong direction to the higher education at the Portsmouth College was harvested at the Greenwich College in 1873, and has since been reaped annually. In 1902 a great opportunity presented itself, but was missed. The control was still in the hands of the same school. They failed to recognise that a thorough practical training at sea is of the first importance, and that on it should be superposed a higher education. They did not understand that this higher education should be based on the idea that, as a subject of study for the naval officer, war is more important than the ship herself. Still imbued with a sense of the importance of the matériel, and believing that instruction is inseparable from ships and dockyards, they are now undermining the war course "-started with so much difficulty-by removing it from the Greenwich College to the Home ports. They do not realise that the study of war requires concentrated attention, and is not to be prosecuted with success by men whose thoughts are continually diverted to the care of their ships.
Changes in the Navy are necessary; but if they are to be real reforms, they must be of the right kind and properly directed. It is of the greatest importance to distinguish a reform from a mere innovation or change. The distinction can only be de
termined by correct thinking. Until there be correct thought there cannot be right action, and when there is correct thought right action will follow. Up to the present great confusion of thought has been manifest in the minds directing naval reform. The action of the Admiralty and the various official memoranda presented to Parliament- more especially that on the entry and training of officers dated 16th December 1902-are proofs of the correctness of this assertion. Take, for instance, the following statement: "In the old days it sufficed if a naval officer were a seaman. Now he must be a seaman, a gunner, a soldier, an engineer, and a man of science as well." A more erroneous idea has been rarely conveyed in two sentences. Was Drake only a seaman? He was one of the greatest warriors of the age, and the trusted councillor of his sovereign. Were Anson, Hawke, and St Vincent only seamen? They were members of the Cabinet, and trusted by the nation. Nothing is more certain than that the great admirals have always been
much more than mere seamen. It is astonishing and regrettable that a memorandum issued from the Admiralty should imply otherwise. Again, since the days of the Armada, has not the gun been the principal weapon, and has not the knowledge of its use been always of primary importance? Could any modern captain give more attention to the gunnery
efficiency of his crew than did Broke of the Shannon? It is difficult to understand why a naval officer should be more of a soldier now than were Drake and Nelson in the past. War has not changed, as we have shown in the pages of 'Maga' for June and July. As to his being an engineer, our whole argument has tended to show that the modern officer should have as intimate knowledge of his ship as had his predecessor. If he controls and manages the motive power, he will do no more than did the seamen of the Elizabethan age and the Nelsonian era. We hold that the division between the military and engineer branches in the
sea-going navy is a source of weakness, and should gradually cease.
Our space does not permit us to discuss other points raised equally superficially in the memorandum referred to; but it is evident that if our arguments are sound, the Admiralty proposals, adopted hastily and without adequate discussion in 1902, are far from meeting the necessities of the case, and will require considerable revision. The future of naval education is still uncertain, and it behoves every man of experience, as far as in him lies, to assist the Admiralty to form clear ideas. It is with that object we have written.
THE VROUW GROBELAAR'S LEADING CASES.-VIII.
BY PERCEVAL GIBBON.
"I Do not think," said the Vrouw Grobelaar, looking at me with a hard unwinking eye, "that idle men should have pretty wives. Though Katje will lose that poppy red-andwhite when she begins to grow fat. Still'
Katje made an observation. "Her mother," pursued the Vrouw Grobelaar, still holding me fixed, "spent seventeen years in one room, because she could not go through the door; and when she died they took the roof off and hoisted her out like a bullock from a well. But as I was saying, it is not well that idle men-1 -those with leisure for their littlenesses, like schoolmasters and doctors and Predikants-should have pretty wives, or they tend to waste themselves. A man with real work and money matters and the governing of cattle and land and Kafirs to fill his day, for such a one it is very well. Her prettiness is an interval, like the drink he takes in the noonday. But for an idle man it becomes the air he breathes. He is all-dependent on it, and it is a small and breakable thing.
"Look how men have been wrecked upon a morsel of pinkand-white, how strong brains have scattered like seed from a burst pod for a trifle of hunger in a pair of eyes. I remember many such cases
which would make you stare for the foolishness of men and the worthlessness of some women. There was the Heer Mostert, Predikant at Dopfontein, who fell to blasphemy and witchcraft when his wife Paula was sick and muttered emptily among her pillows."
The old lady shifted in her wide chair and took her eyes from me at last.
"She was pretty, if you like," she said. "A tall girl, with a small red mouth, and hair that swathed her head like coils of bronze. The Predikant, who had more fire in him than a minister should have, and more fulness of blood than is good for any man, spent the half of his life in the joy of being near to her. She was full in the face and slow with a sleek languor, but on his coming there was to see a quickness of welcome spread itself in her. She would flush warmly, and her eyes would cry to him. Their loved glowed between them; they were children together in that mighty bond. So when a spring that came down with chill rains smote Paula with a fever, and laid her weakly on her bed, the Predikant was a widower already, and walked with a face white and hard, drawn suddenly into new lines of pain and fear.
"Women are strange in sick
Some are infants, greatly needing caresses and the neighbourhood of one tender and familiar. Others grow bitter, with an unwonted spite and temper, venting their ill-ease on all about them. But after the first, Paula was neither of these. The sense of things left her, and she lay on her bed with wide eyes that saw nothing and spoke brokenly about babies. For she had none. The doctor, a man of much brisk kindness, whose face was grown to a cheerful shape, frowned as he bent above her and questioned her heart and pulse. Paula was very ill, and as he looked up he saw the Predikant, tall and still, standing at the foot of the bed, gazing on the girl's face that gave no gaze back; and there was little he could say.
"Speak to her,' he told
“The Predikant kneeled down
beside her, and took her hand, that pinched and plucked upon the quilt, into his.
"Paula!' he said gently. 'Wife!' and oh! the yearning that shivered nakedly in his
"Little hands,' moaned Paula weakly-'little hands beating on my breasts. Little weak hands; oh, so little and weak!'
"The Predikant bowed his head, and the doctor saw his shoulders bunch in a spasm of grief.
"Paula!' he called again. 'Paula, dear. It is I-John. Don't you know John, Paula? Won't you answer me, dear?' "With eyes shut tight, he
VOL. CLXXVIII.—NO. MLXXX.
lifted a face of passionate prayer.
"Say daddy!' said Paula, crooning faintly. 'Say daddy.' "The doctor passed his arm across the Predikant. "Come away,' he said gently. This does no good. Come away, now. There is plenty of hope.'
"He led him outside, rocking like a sightless man. When he sat down on the edge of the stoep, he stared straight before him for a little while, fingering a button on his coat till it broke off. Then he flung it from him and laughed-laughed a long quiet laugh that had no tincture of wildness.
"Look here,' said the doctor,
unless you go and lie down, you'll not be fit to help me with Paula when I need you. Lie down or work, whichever you please. But one or the other, my man.'
"Suppose,' said the Predikant quietly-'suppose I go and pray?'
"That'll do capitally,' answered the doctor. But pray hard, mind. It might even do some good. There's nothing
certain in these cases.'
"I have just been thinking that,' said the Predikant, turning to him with a face full of doubt. 'But we can try everything, at anyrate.'
"We will, too,' said the doctor cheerfully; and then the Predikant passed to his room to pour out the soul that was in him in prayer for the life of Paula.
"It was a great battle the doctor fought in the dark room in which she lay. When late
ingly, and the Predikant crept out again.
"The doctor sat beside the bed and watched the sick woman, and heard her weak murmur of children born in the dreams of fever. It was a still night, cool, and hung with
that night the Predikant, his face dull white in the ominous gloom, came again to the rail at the foot of the bed, his hand fell on something soft that hung there. It was Paula's long bronze hair they had cut off for coolness to her head. "The doctor did not wait for a white glory of stars, and the the question.
point at which life and death
"There will be a crisis be- should meet and choose drew fore day,' he said.
"What does that mean?' asked the other. The doctor explained that Paula would rise, as it were, to the crest of a steep hill, whence she would go down to life or death as God should please.
"But what can we do?' demanded the Predikant.
"Very little,' replied the doctor. 'Beyond the care I am giving her now, the thing is out of our hands. We can only look on and hope. There is always hope.'
"And always hopes betrayed,' said the Predikant. 'But is she worse now than she was this afternoon when she babbled of the little
"Yes,' answered the doctor. "But I prayed,' said the Predikant, with a faint note of argument and question.
"Quite right, too,' replied the doctor. 'Go and pray again,' he suggested.
"The Predikant shook his head. 'It is wasting time,' he whispered, and turned to tiptoe out. But at the door he turned and crept back again.
"It is my wife, you see,' he said mildly-'my wife, so if one thing fails we must try another. You see?'
"The doctor nodded sooth
quickly near. There was this and that to do, small offices that a woman should serve; but the doctor had ordered the women away and did them himself. He was a large man, who continually fell off when he mounted a horse, but in a sick-room he was extraordinarily deft, and trod velvet-footed. So in the business of leading Paula to the point where God would relieve him time went fast, and presently he knew the minute was at hand.
"He was sitting, intent and strung, when he heard from the garden outside the house a bell tinkle lightly. He frowned, for it was no time for noises; but it tinkled again and yet again, louder and more insistent, while a change grew visibly on the face of the sick woman, and he knew that the issue was stirring in the womb of circumstance. Then, brazenly, the bell rang out, and with an oath on his breath he rose and slipped soundlessly from the room.
"When he reached the garden all was still, and he loosed his malediction upon the night air. But even as he turned to go back the bell fluttered near at hand, and he dived among the bushes to silence it. He nearly fell over