Front Page Titles (by Subject) chapter xxiv.: gallican liberty.—spreading of liberty. - On Civil Liberty and Self-Government
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chapter xxiv.: gallican liberty.—spreading of liberty. - Francis Lieber, On Civil Liberty and Self-Government 
On Civil Liberty and Self-Government, 3rd revised edition, ed. Theodore D. Woolsey (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott & Co., 1883).
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gallican liberty.—spreading of liberty.
Having considered Anglican liberty, it will be proper for us to examine the French type of civil freedom, or Gallican liberty.
In speaking here of Gallican liberty, we mean, of course, that liberty which is characteristically French, either in reality, if we shall find that at any period it has taken actual root, or in theory, if it have remained such, and never practically developed itself. Liberty has sprouted in France as in other countries. People have felt there, as all over Europe, that the administration of justice ought to be independent of the other branches of government. The separation of the three great functions of government was proclaimed by the first constituent assembly. But the question here is, whether any of these or other endeavors to establish liberty have been consolidated into permanent institutions, whether they have been allowed to develop themselves, and whether they were or are peculiar to the French, or were adopted from another system of developed civil liberty, as we adopt the whole or parts of an order of architecture or a philosophical system; and, if we find no such institutions or guarantees peculiar to the French, whether there be a general idea and conception of liberty which pervades all France and is peculiar to that country.
In viewing the French institutions which have been intended for the protection of individual rights or the preservation of liberty, I can discover none which has had a permanent existence, except the court of cassation or quashing. It is the highest court of France, possessing the power of annulling or breaking1 the judgments of all other courts of justice, whether in civil or criminal matters, on account of faults and flaws in the judicial forms and procedure, or of misapplications of the existing law. It has no power to examine the verdict. It resembles, therefore, the court of Westminster, in England, when the assembled judges hear questions of law, or our supreme court of the United States on similar occasions, and the supreme courts or courts of appeal or error in the different states. The court of cassation must necessarily sometimes judge of certain procedures of the government against individuals, and declare whether individual rights, publicly guaranteed, have been invaded. Thus it showed its power to some extent when Paris was declared in a state of siege and the whole city was under martial law. But the high attribute of pronouncing upon the constitutionality of the laws themselves, which we cherish in our supreme courts, does not belong to it, nor can its power be vigorously and broadly exercised in a conflict with the supreme power, since this power bears down everything in a country so vast and yet so centralized as France, and in which the principle of development, independent of the executive or central power, is not acknowledged in the different institutions. The court of cassation has at the same time a supervisory authority over the judges of other courts, and can send them before the keeper of the seals (the minister of justice) to give an account of their conduct. It is likewise an object of the court of cassation to keep the application of the law uniform in the different portions of the country. This is a necessary effect of its power to quash judgments.
The institution of the justice of the peace ought to be mentioned here, although it can only be considered as indirectly connected with liberty. The French justice of the peace differs from the English officer of the same name in this, that his function is exclusively of a conciliatory character. Courts of conciliation have existed in many countries, and long before the present justices of the peace were established in France by the first constituent assembly; but, as we see them now there, they must be called a French institution. It has proved itself in France, as well as in other countries, of the highest value in preventing litigation, with all the evils which necessarily attach themselves to it.1
No one, I suppose, would expect the senate, first established by Napoleon I. and then called the conservative senate, that is, the senate whose nominal duty it was to conserve the constitution, and now re-established by Napoleon III., to be enumerated as an institution for the support of liberty. It has no more connection with liberty than the Roman senate had under the emperors. Its very origin would lead no one to expect in it a guarantee of liberty. On the contrary, the French senate has been a great aid to imperial absolutism, by giving to comprehensive measures of monarchical despotism the semblance of not having originated with the absolute monarch or of having received the countenance of a high and numerous political body. In this respect the French senate seems to me worse than that of Russia. The Russian senate is nothing but a council, leaving all power and responsibility with the czar, in appearance as well as in reality.
That which after careful examination must be pronounced to be Gallican liberty is, I take it, the idea of equality founded upon or acting through universal suffrage, or, as it is frequently called by the French, “the undivided sovereignty of the people” with an uncompromising centralism. As it is necessarily felt by many, that the rule of universal suffrage can, practically, mean only the rule of the majority, liberty is believed in France, as has been said, to consist in the absolute rule of the majority.2
Every one who has steadily followed the discussions of the late constituent and national assemblies, who has resolutely gone through the debates of the first constituente, and studied the history of the revolution, and who is fairly acquainted with French literature, will agree, I trust, that the idea of Gallican liberty has been correctly stated. There are many Frenchmen, indeed, who know that this is not liberty, that at most it can only be a means to obtain it; but we now speak of the conception of liberty peculiar to the French school.
Institutions, such as we conceive their necessary character to be, that is, establishments with the important element of self-government, and of a system of guarantees beyond the reach of daily change, do not enter as necessary elements into the idea of Gallican liberty. Self-government is sought for in the least impeded rule of the majority. It has been seen, however, that, according to the Anglican view, the question who shall rule is an important question of liberty indeed, but only one about the means; for if the ruler, whoever he be, deprives the ruled of liberty, there is of course no liberty. A suicide does not the less cease to live because he kills himself; and two game fowls nearly matched, as the parties in a nation may be, do not symbolize liberty, because at one time the one may be uppermost, and at another time the other.
There seems to be in France a constant confusion of equality and democracy on the one hand, and of democracy and liberty on the other; now, although equality largely enters as an element in all liberty, and no liberty can be imagined without a democratic element, equality and democracy of themselves are far from constituting liberty. They may be the worst of despotisms: the one by annihilating individuality, as the communist strives to do; the other—if it means democratic absolutism—by being real sweeping power itself—not power lent, as that of the monarch always must be—power without personal responsibility. It acts; but where is the actor, who is responsible, who can be made responsible, who will judge?
It is with reference to this rule, and this mistaken view of liberty, that one of their wisest, best, and most liberty-loving men, Mr. Royer Collard, has said:1 “It is nothing but a sovereignty of brute force, and a most absolute form of absolute power. Before this sovereignty, without rule, without limit, without duty, and without conscience, there is neither constitution nor law, neither good nor evil, nor past nor future. The will of to-day annuls that of yesterday, without engaging that of to-morrow. The pretensions of the most capricious and most extravagant tyranny do not go so far, because they are not in the same degree disengaged from all responsibility.”
Where any one, or any two, or any three, or any thousand, or any million, can do what they have the mere power to do, there is no liberty. Arbitrary power does not become less arbitrary because it is the united power of many.
Napoleon said: “The French love equality; they care little for liberty.”2 Napoleon certainly mistook the French, and mankind in general, very seriously in some points, as all men of his stamp are liable to do; there are some entire instincts wanting in them; but we fear that he was right in this saying with reference to a large part of the French people. Present events seem to prove it.3
This equality is again very generally mistaken for uniformity, so that it would naturally lead of itself to centralization, even if the French had not contracted a real passion for centralization ever since the reigns of Richelieu and Louis XIV. It has increased with almost every change of government It is the love of power carried into every detail, and therefore the opposite of what we call self-government;1 it is the exceeding partiality of the French for logical neatness and consistency of form, strikingly manifested in the fact that the word logical is now universally used in French for consistency of action or natural sequence of changes—it is this mathematical enthusiasm, if the expression be permitted, applied to the vast field of political practice.
It seems that we can explain the cry of République démocratique et sociale, so often repeated by the most advanced of the democrats during the late government without a king, only on the ground of equality being considered the foundation of all liberty. Indeed, it is considered by many a requisite which lies beyond liberty, and the banners of socialists bore the motto Equality and Fraternity, or Equality, Fraternity, Industry, the word Liberty having been altogether dropped from that once-worshipped legend: Liberty, Fraternity, Equality. I have never been able to find an explanation of the watchword, Democratic and Social Republic, given by those who use it, but it seems to bear no other interpretation than this: Democratic republic signifies that republic which is founded upon the total political equality of its members, carried to its last degree, and social republic must mean a republic based on equality of social condition. Whether this be possible, or desirable if it were possible, cannot occupy us at present. The frequent use of this term by a very large part of the French nation has been mentioned here as one of the evidences showing the prevailing love of mere equality among the French.
Still, it is not easy to say what the French exactly mean by equality, or what Napoleon meant by it when, at St. Helena, he said that he had given equality to the French, and that this was all he could give them, but that his son would have given them liberty. How he knew that his son would have done it, we certainly do not know; but how did he give them equality, when it was he who re-established the ancient orders of nobility? So there are, in spite of all the love of equality, no people who more universally love uniforms and an order with a ribbon, than the French. This inconsistency is a political misfortune. In theory, equality and democracy, carried to the utmost, are demanded, while the habits, tendencies, and desires of the people have a different bent. There is in this respect, it seems, an intellectual and psychical dualism with antagonistic elements in France, similar to that which we frequently observe in individuals in regard to liberty and despotism.1
It is evident how nearly allied this desired equality and uniformity, together with universal but uninstitutional suffrage, and that kind of sovereignty which is in addition confounded with absolute power, are to those political extravagances which strike our eyes in present France.
They are the natural effects of the one or the other, strictly carried out, however inconsistent they may appear with one another. Equality absolutely carried out leads to communism; the idea of undivided sovereignty leads to Mr. Girardin's conception of having no legislature, no division of power—nothing but a succession of popular sultans; the idea of seeking all liberty in universal suffrage alone leads with the greatest ease to a Napoleon—a transfer of everything to one man, and of all future generations to his descendants, thus actually realizing the fearful theory of Hobbes; and the absence of a love of institutions leads to a remarkable tendency to worship one man, to centralization, or, in some cases, to the very opposite—a desire to abolish all government and establish the “sovereignty of the individual.” All extremes in politics meet.
There is no greater error than the idea of making the vote or election the sole basis of liberty—of believing that, with the establishment of an extensive or universal suffrage, we set up liberty, however true it is that liberty stands in need of election. Absolutism may rest on this as on any other basis. The deys of Algiers were elective, but, once elected, they were unbounded masters, in the oriental sense of the term. The generals of nearly all, I believe of all, the monastic orders are elective, but, once elected, the vow of obedience of every monk, and the distinct renunciation of liberty, make the general master. No order, no human association, has carried the doctrine of absolute obedience to a more frightful extent than the Jesuits, whose founder demands that the inferior shall be in the hands of the superior ut baculum, like a mere staff, and whose distinctly expressed principle it is, that every command of the superior shall be like a commandment from on high, even though sin be commanded. Yet the government of the order is founded on election. Mr. Guizot, in speaking of the monastic orders,1 says: “As regards the political code of the monasteries, the rule of St. Benedict offers a singular mixture of despotism and liberty. Passive obedience is its fundamental principle; at the same time the government is elective; the abbot is always chosen by the brothers. When once the choice is made, they lose all liberty, they fall under the absolute domination of their superior. Moreover, in imposing obedience on the monks, the rule orders that the abbot consult them. Chap. iii. expressly says, ‘Whenever anything of importance is to take place in the monastery, let the abbot convoke the whole congregation, and say what the question is; and after having heard the advice of the brothers, he shall think of it apart, and shall do as appears to him most suitable.’ Thus, in this singular government, election, deliberation, and absolute power were coexistent.”
The pope is an elective monarch over the States of the Church. No one has ever maintained that on this account liberty has a home in that country. Nor would the case be altered if the pope were elected, not by the college of cardinals, but by a more numerous body of electors, or by all male adults, or even by the whole population, male and female. The high priest or president in the polity of that stupendous outrage called Mormonism is elective, and the Mormons themselves call their government a theo-democracy;2 yet a greater absolutism has never existed, indeed, we may fairly say, none equal to it. It unites democracy and communism, which is absolutism, with continuous and permanent revelations of the deity, not only on dogmatic points, but on every measure of weight. It is a jus divinum such as the ancients did not even dream of when they derived their kings from the loins of the gods, and it is a communism such as Mohammed never dared to embody in his politico-religious system.
The unicameral system must be mentioned here as a feature of Gallican liberty, because it is held by all those persons who seem to be the most distinct enunciators of this species of liberty, a necessary requisite if they allow the principle of representation at all. They consider that the bicameral system of representatives is aristocratic, or else, as one of their writers expresses it, that two houses can never be reconciled except by money or by blood. The partiality for a legislature of one house is a necessary consequence of the French idea of unity in the government or the unity of the state, and actual abhorrence of confederacies.
The Anglican wants union in his general government; the Gallican, unity. He wants his government to be a solid unit.1 He wishes to deprive every institution, as much as possible, of the principle of self-government and independence, and the only question which remains is, who shall be the ruler and receive that power which government gives? To this subject, as to many others on which I have touched, we shall return when I shall treat more fully of the institutional government and its opposite.
It is not likely that people who speak with derision of parliamentary government, by which nothing is meant but a government in which a deliberative and representative legislature forms an integral part, and of parlementarism, as the new phrase is, would treat the legislature as an institution with self-government and a necessary degree of independence. According to their idea, the safeguards which we believe are found in a mutually moderative contrivance ought to be done away with. Speedy energy, absence of opposition and of results which are the products of mutual modification and mutual toleration, unity of ideas, not consisting in collective effects but in a merely logical carrying out of some abstract principle; these are the main objects, according to Gallican views. The United States are far from being favorably looked upon by the French people, and they are viewed with real ill will by the Red Republicans on account of our decentralization. Rousseau seems to have harbored a positive ill will toward the representative system, and his followers have a still stronger antipathy against federal governments, and self-government which may be said, in one point of view, to be a minute application of the federative principle.
The Spaniards, the Portuguese, the Neapolitans, have made the trial of copying the French, but have succeeded with the system of one house no better than the French themselves, and have passed over to the bicameral legislature, or abolished representation altogether.
There are governments in which the medieval principle of estates still exists. But it may be fairly maintained that this is a remnant of the middle ages, at variance with the changed state of modern society. Nowhere do they present themselves as a system of civil liberty—it is rather a system (and rarely even this) of privileges or liberties. In Sweden the estates still exist, namely the clergy, nobility, citizens, and peasants, and a high degree of liberty is enjoyed. But in examining the constitution of Sweden we cannot fail to observe that modern liberty is rather superinduced or engrafted on the system of states, than evolved out of it. The constitution of Norway, on the other hand, is clearly of the character of that liberty which we have designated as Anglican.1
Frenchmen would probably point out their national guards as an element or guarantee of Gallican liberty. They were established during the first revolution, and have always been diminished in number and restricted in power in those periods in which the government made war upon liberty. They cannot, however, be considered a valid guarantee in so concentrated a government as the French, and in a country in which the army is so gigantic. It was chiefly as a popular force against the king, that the national guards appeared as an important element of liberty in the first French revolution; but they cannot be called a real guarantee of civil liberty, especially when no institutional guarantees of self-government exist.
It must have plainly appeared that liberty seems to me efficiently secured only by the Anglican system. Other attempts in modern times have been but very partially successful, and of these there are only a few. The question arises at once, are those persons in the main correct who roundly assert that no people are fit for liberty except the Anglo-Saxons? For thus they call the English nation, and those who have descended from it. Or is it correct to say that whoever wishes to enjoy liberty must copy the main institutions of Anglican liberty? On these and some cognate subjects so many startling errors exist, that the remarks on the different types of liberty may be appropriately concluded by some observations on these misconceptions. They have a practical bearing, and influence large masses.
It is doubtless true that the greatest amount of liberty is at present enjoyed by the Anglican race, whose institutions and guarantees seem to form the only extensive and consistent, as well as practical, system of civil liberty, the only one in which liberty and law have become firmly interlocked, and by which it has thus become possible to establish, as a practical reality, what Tacitus held to be impossible—the union of libertas and imperium. It is true also that the Anglican division has had a greater influence than any other tribe on the whole white race, and that other nations seem to have enjoyed liberty or advanced on the path of freedom, in recent times, in the same proportion only in which they have adopted the main principles and chief institutions elaborated by this portion of our race; and it is equally true that we enjoy so great an amount of freedom because we are accustomed to liberty and a government of law, and because our race has perseveringly developed it for centuries. But it must not be forgotten, on the one hand, that other nations and races may possibly develop certain principles in a manner peculiar to their character and circumstances; and, oh the other hand, that it is the rule of all spreading advancement of humanity that the full amount of what has been gained by patience, blood, or fortunate combinations is transferred to other regions and distant tribes.
The missionary—from St. Paul, when he went to Rome, to those who now embark for the Pacific—does not demand the neophyte to pass through the dispensations of the Old Testament, and all the experience of the early church, before he begins to teach the dispensation of the New Testament, and to establish churches according to the government and the theology which exist at his home.
There are many persons who pretend to admire liberty, but withhold it from the people on the plea that they are not prepared for it. Unquestionably, all races are not prepared for the same amount of liberty, and many are not yet fit for any real liberty at all. But two things are certain, that all nations, and especially those belonging to our own civilized family, prove that they are prepared for the beginning of liberty, by desiring it and insisting upon it, and that you cannot otherwise prepare nations for enjoying liberty than by beginning to establish it, as you best prepare nations for a high Christianity by beginning to preach it.
There are persons even among ourselves who, observing how many and sad failures have taken place with other nations, bluntly assert that none but the Anglo-Saxons are fit for liberty, and that it cannot be enjoyed by others. That some nations are fitter for the elaboration or peaceful enjoyment of liberty than others, according to their character, which makes them perhaps less fit to excel in some other branches of civilization, cannot be denied. So was the Greek more fit for the fine arts than the Roman. That some tribes appear on the stage of history, act their part, and vanish again without having made any progress in civil liberty, or ever having become conscious of it as an element of advancing civilization, is equally true. But do we hold any nation, once fairly entered upon the path of civilization, unfit for science or the arts, or a stable government, or a literature, or for Christianity? That in, which man rises highest, and manifests himself most intellectually—Christianity—is believed to be meet for all; but should liberty be restricted to a tribe or a single nation? It is not likely. I have admitted that some nations are fitter for the one or the other. All will not equally cultivate all branches; each cannot originate every branch; but all will partake of every element of civilization; and while it may be proper for the historian to say such a nation has not been able to act with originality in this or another branch, it is not becoming to the philosopher to say that such a portion of our race will not be able to do so. When the Greek scholars from Constantinople carried the last embers of Grecian civilization and intellectuality over the West; when the restoration of letters prepared the way for still higher achievements, no one said that the English, or French, or Germans were unfit to partake in the humanizing blessing, although the Italian soil, still bearing the effects of former culture, was the first to bring forth delectable fruit. When Gothic architecture had been elaborated by some, it was not believed that other nations could not raise cathedrals in the same style, and enjoy it and develop it in their own way.
On the other hand, we meet with the very reverse. Anglican liberty is opposed on the ground that it is not indigenous, and that it is both inexpedient and unworthy to adopt it. Large numbers in France, both communists and imperialists, treat “parliamentarism” in this manner; and the emperor said, when he had assembled the senate and the legislative corps, soon after the restoration of the empire, that France for “the first time enjoyed the happiness of possessing institutions exclusively French and original.”1 As to the originality, we would only observe that they are fac-similes of what Napoleon I. had established, and that he copied the senate, as he did the eagle, the title and idea of emperor, the name of legion, of prefect, from Rome, unfortunately at her worst period, for the Roman senate during the better time was part of the proud Senatus Populusque Romanus; and the corps législatif, if there be any element of a representative legislature in it, is not of French origin; if it be a mute body, however, there is no originality in it either. Even if it were as the emperor proclaimed it, there would be nothing in it to be rejoiced at. The law of all spreading civilization is emigration, transmission, and addition. Ought the French to reject the Grecian orders of architecture because they are not French, or ought our medical students not to go to Paris because the French science of medicine is not ours? Has modern music been rejected by all the nations except the Italians and the Germans because it is of native growth with these nations? Ought the French to reject saving-banks because they were first established and developed in England, and ought the English to discard Jacquard's loom because invented in France?
The son of Sirach said, that wisdom was hovering like the clouds until it “took root in an honorable people”1 —the Israelites. It is thus with all wisdom, all great ideas and comprehensive systems. They take root with “an honorable people,” that develops them. After that come the winds of heaven and carry the seeds far and about. Patriotism and national vanity are not the same. Patriotism is excellent so long as it is the love of its own to such a degree that it is ready to make any sacrifice and to do all for its benefit; it is not a virtue when it consists in being enamored with itself. Narcissus is not the symbol of patriotism, but Lycurgus and Solon are, travelling far in order to gather knowledge for their own country.
At all great and distinct periods of modern history, there are a general idea and certain adequate forms pervading the whole. Such was the papal period at the beginning of the middle ages; such was the universal feudal system; such the period of universities springing up everywhere; such the periods of art; such the periods of Abelard and scholastic philosophy; such the rising of free cities in all active parts of Europe; such the ardor of maritime discovery and enthusiasm for “cosmography;” such the period of monasteries; such Protestantism; and such is, I believe, the present period of civil liberty, which, for centuries to come, will be essentially of the Anglican type. To learn liberty, I believe that nations must go to America and England, as we go to Italy to study music and to have the vast world of the fine arts opened to us, or as we go to France to study science, or to Germany that we may learn how to instruct and spread education. It was a peculiar feature of antiquity that law, religion, dress, the arts and customs, that everything in fact, was localized. Modern civilization extends over regions, tends to make uniform, and eradicates even the physical differences of tribes and races.1 Thus made uniform, nations receive and give more freely. If it has pleased God to appoint the Anglican race as the first workmen to rear the temple of liberty, shall others find fault with Providence? The all-pervading law of civilization is physical and mental mutual dependence, and not isolation.
Many governments deny liberty to the people on the ground that it is not national; yet they copy foreign absolutism. There is doubtless something essential in the idea of national development, but let us never forget two facts: Men, however different, are far more uniform than different; and most of the noblest nations have arisen from the mixture of others.
[1.]Casser is the French for breaking; hence the name of the court.
[1.]We have seen that courts of conciliation have attracted renewed attention in England since Lord Brougham's proposition of an act for the Farther Cheapening of Justice, in May, 1851. An instructive article on this important subject, and the excellent effects these courts have produced in many countries, shown by official statistics, can be found in the German Staats-Lexicon, ad verbum Friedensgericht.
[2.]I have given my views on the subject of the nature of sovereignty and the way it acts, at length in the first volume of the Political Ethics. If I have not succeeded there in mastering the subject, I should not be able to do it here; if I have succeeded, I cannot in fairness repeat a long discussion.
[1.]Royer Collard's Opinion, or October 4, 1831.
[2.]Words spoken to Lord Ebrington, in his exile on the island of Elba.
[3.]Rousseau expressed the political idea of equality, the aversion to representative governments and institutional politics, and the disapproval of private property, boldly and clearly in his Social Contract, a masterly written work, which has exercised an incalculable effect on French affairs. It was the favorite book of the leading men of the first revolution, and continues largely to influence the French. Yet Rousseau only pronounced more clearly, and boldly carried farther, the ideas of unity, concentration, and equality, that had been gradually growing stronger in the French mind long before him. They can be traced not only in politics, but in all spheres.
[1.]I have given some remarkable instances of interference on the part of modern absolute governments, in the Political Ethics. I shall add the following recent instance: I am sure that no one accustomed to Anglican self-government considers such details trivial, however well he may be acquainted with the fact in general, that government in those countries tries to guide, direct, manage, initiate, and complete everything that seems of any importance. Some years ago a German king ironically called, in a throne speech, constitutions Paper Providences. The expression was every way most unfortunate. It seems to me that it is these very governments of centralized mandarinism that play at Providence, in which they closely resemble the communists, as indeed all absolutism contains a strong element of communism.
[1.]Nothing is more common than men with a decided intellectual bent towards freedom and an equally decided psychical inclination towards absolutism. Their intellect admires the grandeur of liberty, their reason acknowledges the principles of justice; their desires are for free action, and yet their souls resent every opposition. They appear, therefore, often as hypocrites, without being such in reality. There is a dualism within them whose two elements are at war, very similar to that which, without hypocrisy, makes many persons sincerely preach peace and charity abroad, but act at home as domestic tyrants.
[1.]History of Civilization in France, lect. xiv., sub fin.
[2.]Theo-democracy does not contain a contradiction, however novel and, at first sight, startling the term may appear to us. If democracy necessarily expressed the idea of liberty, then indeed the name theo-democracy would be senseless, for all theocracy or sacerdotal rule is a negation of civil liberty. It immures in dogma.
[1.]The extent to which this idea is occasionally carried out is, almost inconceivable to us, accustomed as we are to so essentially different a system and train of political thoughts. A few years ago the minister of the interior had given some new directions regarding the quarantine regulations. They were more in conformity with the opinions of scientific men on the contagiousness of the plague. The people of Marseilles, who still keep the terrible plague of the last century in vivid remembrance, disapproved of these orders from the central government, and a meeting of certain persons was called together. Whereupon most newspapers took part with the government, and charged the citizens, with whom this little germ of self-government had shown itself, with the hideous sin of federalism, the crime for which many had lost their heads in the first revolution. This was in the times of the so-called republic, before the second of December, and the few papers which took side with the citizens were legitimist papers, thus furnishing, by the way, another instance of the fact that all sorts of things are possible under peculiar circumstances. It was the Tories who resisted the septennial bill abolishing triennial parliaments in 1716; it was the Jesuits who first enunciated the doctrine of the sovereignty of the people, in order to get a fulcrum against heretical monarchs; it was a Spanish Jesuit who defended regicide under Philip II.; and here we have legitimists, working for a descendant of Louis XIV., who took side for a principle of self-action against the central government!
[1.][In 1866 the four estates of Sweden were converted into two houses, of which the first or upper consists of one hundred and twenty-five members, who represent the noblesse, other landed proprietors, and the clergy, and are elected by landsthings or provincial assemblies, and the second, of one hundred and ninety-one members, represents the towns and rural districts. The term of office of the upper house is, we believe, nine years. In Norway the storthing, or legislature, chosen by electors chosen by the qualified citizens, holds office for three years, and divides itself on assembling into two houses,—the odalsthing, having three-quarters of the whole body for its members, and the lagthing, composed of one-quarter. AH projects of laws or acts originate in the odalsthing; and if the lagthing rejects them twice over, the storthing meets and legalizes the project only by a vote of two thirds.]
[1.]This idea has been, since, carried much farther. A large number of persons, and, it would seem, all imperialists, love to dwell upon the idea that imperialism represents Latin civilization, opposite to Teutonic unwieldy, uncentralized, barbaric freedom. When thus Latinism is taken as a distinctive mark, Roman imperialism is meant, not of course Republican Roman self-government The French, in trying to renovate Latinism, seem to fall, as to principle, into an anachronism not dissimilar to that into which the Germans fell as to language when they officially called their empire, down to its dissolution, the Holy Roman Empire of the Germans.
[1.]Ecclesiasticus, xxiv. 12.
[1.]The mutual influence of different literatures is daily extending. Take as an instance the literature of England, France, Germany, and the United States, and add the mutual influence of the journals of these nations. Then consider how many of the elements of civilization are not national, but common to all—the alphabet, the numeric signs, with the decimal system, musical notation and music itself, commercial usages and bookkeeping, international law, social intercourse and laws of politeness; the visiting-card, the railway, the steamboat, the post-office, the institution of money, the bill of exchange, insurance—indeed, it is impossible to enumerate all the agreements of nations belonging to our race. I shall only add the dress, the furniture, and even cookery.