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tion as the splinters; if, therefore, a man be close enough to the place of burst to be killed by the gas, he would also be cut to pieces by splinters, so that in the open the gas does not add to the number killed, though it doubtless increases the moral effect. In an enclosed space the gas, being confined, does much more damage; and a shell actually bursting in a trench would send its gas flying along the trench with fatal results for, say, 30 feet or more. But even with lyddite it is not easy to get a shell from a gun to injure men in trenches. It is impossible to get the shell into a trench, and if it bursts on the parapet outside, it will not do much harm. The only thoroughly efficient lyddite shells from guns are those which skim the top of the parapet, bursting as they do so. But to attain such a result the minutest accuracy is necessary, and such accuracy is quite unattainable except at very short ranges, such as 1000 yards or less, where the gunners would stand no chance against the rifles of the defence.

When the gun fails the howitzer comes in. A howitzer is to the gun what the pistol is to the rifle a short light weapon firing a heavy projectile with a small charge: thus the 4.7-inch gun is 16 feet long, weighs 45 cwt., and carries a 45-lb. shell. The 5-inch howitzer is 5 feet long, weighs 9 cwt., and carries a 50-lb. shell. The charge for the 47inch gun is 97 oz. of cordite, that for the 5-inch howitzer from 11 oz. down to 33 oz. of cordite. The latter tiny charge

is used at short ranges, and though only 1-26th of the charge of the gun, it will send the heavy 50-lb. shell 1500 yards; whilst with the 111⁄2 oz. charge the range of the howitzer is 5000 yards. A howitzer differs from a gun in being fairly effective at its extreme range. No practical man ever troubles himself about the extreme range of a gun, as a gun becomes useless some time before the extreme range is reached.

But the howitzer in question is really a substitute for the field-gun, which weighs 7 cwt. and has a 14-lb. shell. It is, however, considerably heavier, and the ammunition is very cumbrous; it is therefore less mobile. Still, it can be moved and worked in the field almost like a field-gun. The howitzer fires at high elevations, in the hope of dropping its shell into the enemy's trenches, where they would be burst by percussion-fuse. Or the howitzer can drop shell over a hill which protects those encamped beneath it from gun - fire. With the howitzer, as with the gun, the great difficulty is the observation and correction of the fire. Accuracy is also of supreme importance. The accuracy of our field-howitzer is such that at 3000 yards about one shell in twenty can be dropped into a trench 6 feet broad. This does not appear to be particularly good, but a trench 6 feet broad is a tiny mark. The howitzer would easily hit a lawn-tennis court two miles off every other shot, always supposing it could be clearly seen where the shells are falling; but then a dozen trenches could

be placed side by side in the length of a lawn-tennis court.

A howitzer can use shrapnel if the enemy appears in the open, and shrapnel even from a howitzer are more formidable in the open than are lyddite shell; but a howitzer-battery is hardly a match for a fieldbattery, as the latter, especially if it has the quick-firing equipment, would silence the former by a rapid shrapnel-fire. The rôle of the howitzer is almost exclusively the attack of troops under cover: it is not well suited to fighting in the open. Its projectile is therefore essentially the lyddite shell.

The conditions of the present war, where intrenchments have played such a large part, are in all probability exceptional. Weapons suited to fighting in the open must in the future,

as in the past, form the principal armament of our troops; and though the deadliness of such weapons is in great measure checked immediately an enemy intrenches, no campaign can be won by always remaining on the defensive.

Improvements in projectiles will certainly continue to be made in the future as in the past, and there is no doubt that the rate of fire, especially from artillery, is likely to be increased. But there is no present indication that we are at all likely to see any very revolutionary changes in the weapons at present in use in South Africa; nor is there any reliable evidence that our guns or projectiles have in any way failed to produce those results which could reasonably be expected from them.


IMPERIAL battles' last avengers stand:
Death with a robe of fire and direful Fear
On the dim edge of space; moaning and drear,
The steep wave-clouds roll onward in grey band
Like thunder-wolves beneath; up from the land
Comes a perfume, an odour sere, and Death,
Catching the smoke of blood and failing breath,
Wheels down in vulture flight with eager hand.

With folded wings borne through the trembling air
Riseth like bubbles from the muddy deep
A mist of many spirits: a bloom of sleep
Compels awhile, yet is high God aware,

And looking down shall heave up from their dust
A blade whose brightness Time shall never rust.

R. L. A.


IN affairs of State, the Englishman, luckily for the world as for himself, is guided by political instinct. It takes at least a revolution to make us produce a political theory. Our love of practical order has little to do with our intellects-though our particular respect for decency sometimes leads us to provide a cloak of dogma for the nakedness of accomplished fact. Our cataclysms are not arranged for us by political philosophers, nor even by the interpreters of political philosophy, the Edisons and Huxleys of that learning, but by the free play of economic conditions. We have never builded on the sand-bank of ideas, to be shifted by every current of doctrine. Our "dark foundations" rest on hard prejudice, on slow-grown institutions: the roots of our polity, rather, lie deep in the hereditary fabric of the British mind.

But though to politise in advance is foreign to our nature, too protracted a deference to exploded and inapplicable dogmas is dangerous to our interests. It is worth while, therefore, to explain to the people, and to their busy legislators, that Liberalism is very dead indeed.

National character, and national success, are results of a binding polity. A tight polity, says Bagehot, gives us in time a sense of "prescriptive governability," which is the sentiment of order. The most successful nations are those which, like Eng

land, can maintain in general a balance between the sense of order and the delicate principle of progress. The Romans, in the thick crust of their legality, kept hidden a little seed of adaptiveness which gave them their empire. Like ourselves, they were capable of growth, and were saved the dioramatic sceneshifting common to communities whose intelligence overrides their traditions. The folly, or crime, of our Liberals of the earlier part of this century was that, for commercial and occasional purposes, they set themselves to loose the bands of the national polity altogether. Misled by the very completeness of our acquired "governability, and by the comparatively high standard of civilisation which it had produced, they assumed that the time had come when we could dispense, for most purposes, with the political organism itself. Government, henceforward, was to be a mere matter of police. Internationally, even police would be unnecessary. Civilisation would make war impossible. Money-getting, the one motive recognised by political economy, was the only passion possible to civilised man. And, as is still the custom of enthusiasts whose ignorance of the past gives them dreams of an instant millennium,-though theirs was but a sordid millennium for millionaires,-they flung aside the idea of duty; applied themselves to a greedy enjoyment of the present; and

left it to posterity to repair their mistakes and to remedy the destruction they effected.


In the study and the lectureroom it is understood, of course, or explained, that the conclusions of political economy, based on data from which the main factors of human life are eliminated, are not to be applied forthright to politics. But in Parliament, and in politics, they were the mainstay of Liberal doctrine and a pseudo-science, which was no more than an illdigested accumulation of statistical half-facts, selected from too narrow a field of phenomena by poorly-educated and not over-wise doctrinaires, was used by noisy and interested adventurers to justify the pre-determined sacrifice of the land to the pecuniary ambitions of the manufacturer. Under the guidance of the landed class, England had beaten Europe off the seas. The French war had been profitable to commerce, and it left the world open to the manufacturer. In the peace which followed, the control of the carrying trade, and special advantages in the possession of available coal and iron, together with our lead in the matter of railways and steam shipping, left us free, given cheap labour and unlimited markets, to manufacture for the world. And therefore England sacrificed the landed class. The agriculturist, to begin with, was cajoled or threatened into the appearance of a bargain. Lord John Russell pledged the Reformers to a removal of burdens from the occupiers of land in compensation for the Repeal

of the Corn Laws. But the bargain was never intended to be kept. The real end in view

the exploitation of labour by the manufacturers-was to be secured by the ruin of the landed interest. The Tories were be-mused in Parliament by the specious clamour of the doctrinaires. The Chartists were batoned, at Manchester and elsewhere, into a sense of what was good for them by the young men of the manufacturers and their Irish mercenaries. And the cry for a cheap loaf was adroitly raised to set the two classes, the producer and the consumer, the agriculturist and the artisan, by the ears - to the profit of the political successors of the one and masters of the other. of the other. Cobden, a peculiarly unscrupulous representative of the manufacturers, who openly gloried in his power to mislead both Parliament and the masses, battled for cheap food, as he himself declared, simply for the sake of low wages-and invested his own money in the protected monopolies of Algeria. He was the apostle of the economic department, Judas who a manded to the last the admiration of his fellow - disciples. Bright, who attended rather to the political side of Liberalism (a more genuinely complacent prophet, the reversal of whose every prediction has made him of actual service to the nation as a species of Quaker helot, a warning against the very fatness of middle-class ignorance, an ensamplar of how not to predict), yet proclaimed for adulteration as a form of com

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petition-an ingenious portmanteau of the ideals of free trade and cheap food. Liberalism and the Free-Trade dogma were invented, in reality, to cover low wages and an export trade. But they came into power on the cry for a big loaf; and on the strength of the contention, since demonstrated false by experience, but still justified by the economists, and still clearly true to the wage-earning intelligence, that no duty on corn means cheap bread. For the purposes of their private and immediate interests, therefore, the manufacturers, who thenceforward for some time were to control the national policy, set themselves to show that, philosophically, absolutely, and for ever, it was to the advantage of the State that manufacturers, and the servants of manufacturers, should obtain their raw products duty free. They bluffed the country, Parliament, and themselves, and they attempted to bluff the world, into a conviction of the abstract righteousness of Liberalism, and the demonstrable advantages, in all circumstances, of free-trade. The foreigner did not argue: he took silent and persistent advantage of the situation. The debtor countries (and our colonies) in two generations ruined our agriculture by exporting their agricultural produce to pay the interest of our loans. The consumer was satisfied: manufacturers prospered, for a time. But now that the period of our commercial and manufacturing monopoly has passed, he debtor countries are threat

ening to ruin our manufacturers also, by paying the interest of our loans in manufactured articles. And consequently the modern manufacturer, who discovered some time since that Liberalism had served its turn, is crying out, halfashamedly, for one form or another of tentative protection. This is the real, or economic, history of the Liberalism that is dead, though it has left its dogmas to intimidate and befog our politicians, who were brought up on them in their youth. With its plausible cosmopolitan side, its hostility to the commonwealth, its sentimental attempt to loose the bands of our body politic, we are not, for the moment, concerned.

Coincidently with the loss of their markets abroad, the manufacturers lost political control at home. Left, by their own policy, in face of the proletariat, they showed the characteristic weakness of the middle class-which, though producing capable administrators, is unfit to rule. The wage earning classes, having gained their share of political power, and being, in spite of a deteriorated physique,

the result of adulterated food, and too little of it, in the period of Liberal predominance, which has given us a generation showing more signs of a continued want of nourishment than you shall find in any other civilised people,-more intelligent than their fathers, have asked for, and obtained, from a half-comprehending Conservative party, an economic reformation;-to the gradual undoing of Liber

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