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of arbitration is not to supersede but to supplement the method of negotiation, not to lower the character and weaken the influence of the negotiator, but, with a court of appeal at his side, to moderate bis patriotism and diminish his responsibility.
When all negotiation has failed, and all mutual concessions become unavailing—when the negotiators part in sullen civility, and with ferocious intent-when letters of marque are about to be issued, to sink or to seize the commercial treasures that are floating on the deep, to consign our fathers or our sons to a watery grave or a hostile dungeon-to demolish or to burn the castle or the cottage home that Providence has placed on our shores,-in such a crisis the friends of peace ask for the security of a written obligation, that the miserable question—perhaps one of false honour, perhaps one of filthy lucre-shall be settled by arbitration. They ask not that the Arbiter shall dispossess the Ambassador: He is to replace neither the soldier nor the sailor who defend their country, but the pirate and the burglar who disgrace it. The man, however, for whom Providence has reserved the noble destiny of the world's peacemaker, has still to assume the functions of a minister. The ideal, however, is but truth in the distance, and its living representative has not yet breathed among the senators of Europe. On the world's dial, indeed, the sun of peace and of knowledge has not yet culminated,—it has but gilded our mountain tops with its auroral beam; yet, in its diminishing shadows and growing brightness we trace its upward path, and believe in its meridian destination.
“ We see the war-crushed nations stand
To catch the noontide blaze in turn;
The bright, but struggling glory burn:
Kindles the altar with its ray,
She speeds it on its sparkling way.” In confirmation of these hopes and views we have only to state, and we state it in triumph, that Mr. Cobden's motion, though negatived by a majority of ninety-seven, was supported by the votes of seventy-nine independent members of the House. What a glorious contrast does this result exhibit to us, and what hopes does it not inspire, when we recollect that the first proposition for repealing the corn-laws was supported in the House of Commons by only fourteen votes !
The Second General Peace Congress assembled in Paris on the 22d August 1849, and held its sittings for three days, under the presidency of M. VICTOR Hugo, equally distinguished as a statesman and a poet. M. Dufaure, the minister of the interior, had readily given his authority for a meeting which he characterized
Congress in Paristhe Archbishop of Paris a Member. 13 as philanthropic, and as having a high character of international utility; and he at the same time exempted 500 of the English members from the necessity of obtaining passports and submitting their baggage to examination. M. Lacrosse, the minister of public works," applauded most heartily the efforts which the Congress were making for the propagation of the noble idea of universal peace;" and he expressed his “sincere desire to behold the time of, at least, its partial realization,” which " he hoped might be hastened by the numerous international relations which were being daily created by the vast development of the means of communication all over the face of Europe.” M. F. Lesseps, ex-minister plenipotentiary at Rome, MM. Thierry, Tissot, and Barthelemy Saint-Hilaire, all members of the Institute, became members of the Congress, and numerous professors from every university in Europe and America, and many clergymen, followed in their train. The National Assembly sent to the Congress some of its most distinguished members, and the Catholic Church its learned and its pious primate. M. Marie Dominique Auguste, Archbishop of Paris, would have accepted the presidency of the Congress had his health permitted, and he in vain requested the permission of his physician to attend one of its sittings. In announcing himself as a member of the Congress, he declares, “ that war is a remnant of ancient barbarism, and that it is accordant with the spirit of Christianity to desire the disappearance of this formidable scourge from the face of the earth, and to make strenuous efforts to obtain this noble and generous end;" and in the following year, when he had witnessed the state of feeling in France, this noble prelate addressed the president of the Congress at Frankfort in the following words :
“Myself, a man of peace, minister of a God who has said of himself that he was 'meek and lowly of heart,' I applaud these efforts of the friends of peace to establish concord on the earth, and to banish wars and divisions. This is a grand object; an object essentially Christian. We cannot yet attain it, but there is a strong tendency towards its attainment. These public manifestations, expressed by these Congresses, prepare and form opinion, which is always the queen of the world. When public opinion shall be decidedly pronounced against violence and brute force, to terminate the differences which arise among nations, their rulers will be obliged to consider among themselves what to do, and wars will become more and more rare.
“ But above all, by the development of this Christian spirit among men of peace, when it shall be solidly established on the earth, when humanity shall form only one family, when men shall look upon one another as brothers, when the Church shall have only faithful children, and the passions be subdued, when feelings of selfishness shall give place to those of justice and charity, then will peace descend to the earth ; there shall be peace on earth and good will among men.
“ We shall in vain, Monsieur le Président, seek for combinations founded on reason and on the material interests of man. They are impotent. It is the heart of the people which must be changed. This great and salutary revolution on the earth cannot be effected except by the aid of a fulcrum taken from heaven. May all the friends of peace, therefore, be, above all, the friends of Christianity! Let them promote its operation on and among themselves. It is the sole means of real efficacy to attain the end proposed, and which we are all engaged to promote. May God supremely bless our common efforts, and incline the hearts of the people toward gentleness and love, which are, indeed, at the foundation of all religion !"
Under auspices like these, where religion, and science, and literature, and political wisdom, had united their torches in one common flame, the proceedings of the Congress were conducted with affectionate unanimity, with brilliant eloquence, and with the inspiration of a living faith in their cause. The ideal passed into the real; the imagination and the judgment proclaimed the same truths; and in the ignorance, the inhumanity, and the anarchy of the past, earnest men, whose convictions neither bigotry nor self-interest could shake, saw the dawn of enlightened times, the downfal of bloody institutions, and the blessed millennium of universal peace.
These interesting features, so seldom exhibited in the discussions of men of all nations and creeds, shone pre-eminently in the inaugural address of the president, M. Victor Hugo. We regret that we can find room only for some of its separate paragraphs.
“Gentlemen, this sacred idea, universal peace, all nations bound together in a common bond, the Gospel for their supreme law, mediation substituted for war-this holy sentiment, I ask you, is it practicable? Can it be realized ? Many practical men, many public men grown old in the management of affairs, answer in the negative. But I answer with you, and I answer without hesitation,—Yes! and I shall shortly try to prove it to you. I go still further. I do not merely say it is capable of being put into practice, but I add that it is inevitable, and that its execution is only a question of time, and may be hastened or retarded. The law which rules the world is not, cannot be different from the law of God. But the divine law is not one of war—it is peace. Men commenced by conflict, as the creation did by chaos. Whence are they coming? From wars—that is evident. But whither are they going? To peace--that is equally evident. When you enunciate those sublime truths, it is not to be wondered at that your assertion should be met by a negative; it is easy to understand that your faith will be encountered by incredulity; it is evident that in this period of trouble and of dissension the idea of universal peace must surprise and shock, almost like the apparition of something impossible and ideal; it is quite clear that all will call Eloquent Speech of M. Victor Hugo.
15 it Utopian; but for me, who am but an obscure labourer in this great work of the nineteenth century, I accept this opposition without being astonished or discouraged by it. Is it possible that you can do otherwise than turn aside your head and shut your eyes, as if in bewilderment, when in the midst of the darkness which still envelops you, you suddenly open the door that lets in the light of the future?”
After referring to the time when the various provinces of France, now in peaceful union, were engaged in contest and bloody wars, he anticipates on similar grounds the pacification of Europe.
“A day will come when you, France--you, Russia-you, Italy you, England-you, Germany-all of you, nations of the Continent, will, without losing your distinctive qualities and your glorious individuality, be blended into a superior unity, and constitute an European fraternity, just as Normandy, Britanny, Burgundy, Lorraine, Alsace, have been blended into France. A day will come when the only battle-field will be the market open to commerce and the mind opening to new ideas. A day will come when bullets and bomb-shells will be replaced by votes, by the universal suffrage of nations, by the venerable arbitration of a great Sovereign Senate, which will be to Europe what the Parliament is to England, what the Diet is to Germany, what the Legislative Assembly is to France. A day will come when a cannon will be exhibited in public museums, just as an instrument of torture is now, and people will be astonished how such a thing could have been. A day will come when those two immense groups, the United States of America and the United States of Europe, shall be seen placed in the presence of each other, extending the hand of fellowship across the ocean, exchanging their produce, their commerce, their industry, their arts, their genius, clearing the earth, peopling the deserts, improving creation under the eye of the Creator, and uniting, for the good of all, these two irresistible and infinite powers, the fraternity of men and the power of God. Nor is it necessary that four hundred years should pass away for that day to come. We live in a rapid period, in th most impetuous current of events and ideas which has ever borne away humanity; and at the period in which we live, a year suffices to do the work of a century.
“But French, English, Germans, Russians, Sclaves, Europeans, Americans, what have we to do in order to basten the advent of that great day? We must love each other! To love each other is, in this immense labour of pacification, the best manner of aiding God! God desires that this sublime object should be accomplished. And to arrive at it you are yourselves witnesses of what the Deity is doing on all sides. See what discoveries are every day issuing from human genius-discoveries which all tend to the same object-Peace! What immense progress! What simplification ! How Nature is allowing herself to be more and more subjugated by man! How matter every day becomes still more the handmaid of intellect, and the auxiliary of civilisation! How the causes of war vanish with the causes of suffering ! How people far separated from each other so lately, now almost touch! How distances become less and less ; and this rapid approach, what is it but the commencement of fraternity! Thanks to railroads, Europe will soon be no larger than France was in the middle ages. Thanks to steam-ships, we now traverse the mighty ocean more easily than the Mediterranean was formerly crossed. Before long, men will traverse the earth, as the gods of Homer did the sky, in three paces! But yet a little time, and the electric wire of concord shall encircle the globe and embrace the world. And here, gentlemen, when I contemplate this vast amount of efforts and of events, all of them marked by the finger of God—when I regard this sublime object, the wellbeing of mankind-peace, when I reflect on all that Providence has done in favour of it, and human policy against it, a sad and bitter thought presents itself to my mind.”
After asserting that the nations of Europe expend annually for the maintenance of armies a sum of two thousand millions of francs, (a hundred millions sterling nearly,) he thus proceeds :
“ If for the last thirty-two years this enormous sum had been expended in this manner, America in the meantime aiding Europe, know you what would have happened? The face of the world would have been changed. Isthmuses would be cut through, channels formed for rivers, tunnels bored through mountains. Railroads would cover the two continents; the merchant navy of the globe would have increased a hundred-fold. There would be nowhere barren plains, nor moors, nor marshes. Cities would be found where there are now only deserts. Ports would be sunk where there are now only rocks. "Asia would be rescued to civilisation ; Africa would be rescued to man; abundance would gush forth on every side, from every vein of the earth, at the touch of man, like the living stream from the rock beneath the rod of Moses. Misery would be no longer found ; and with misery, what do you think would disappear?- Revolutions. Yes, the face of the world would be changed! In place of mutually destroying each other, men would pacifically extend themselves over the earth. In place of conspiring for revolution, men would combine to establish colonies! In place of introducing barbarism into civilisation, civilisation would replace barbarism."
When M. Visschers, the President of the Brussels Congress, had given an account of the progress of the
Peace cause during the last year, the president presented to M. Bara a case containing bank-notes of the value of 1000 francs ; and he announced that a prize of 500 francs would be awarded to the author of the best collection of extracts from ancient and modern authors, upon the horrors and evils of war; and that the Société de la Morale Chrétienne would give a prize of the same value for the best collection of extracts upon
the benefits of peace. In discussing the proposal for international arbitration, an ex