Political and Literary essays, 1908-1913

Political and Literary essays, 1908-1913

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The Project Gutenberg EBook of Political and Literary essays, 1908-1913 by Evelyn Baring This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net Title: Political and Literary essays, 1908-1913 Author: Evelyn Baring Release Date: December 16, 2005 [EBook #17320] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1 *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK POLITICAL AND LITERARY ESSAYS *** Produced by Taavi Kalju and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net (This file was produced from images generously made available by The Internet Archive/Million Book Project) Character set for HTML: ISO-8859-1 POLITICAL AND LITERARY ESSAYS 1908-1913 BY THE EARL OF CROMER MACMILLAN AND CO., LIMITED ST. MARTIN'S STREET, LONDON 1913 MACMILLAN AND CO., LIMITED LONDON · BOMBAY · CALCUTTA · MELBOURNE THE MACMILLAN COMPANY NEW YORK · BOSTON · CHICAGO · DALLAS · SAN FRANCISCO THE MACMILLAN CO. OF CANADA, LTD. TORONTO [Pg v] PREFACE I have to thank the editors of The Edinburgh and Quarterly Reviews , The Nineteenth Century and After , and The Spectator for allowing the republication of these essays, all of which appeared originally in their respective columns. No important alterations or additions have been made, but I should like to observe, as regards the first essay of the series—on "The Government of Subject Races"—that, although only six years have elapsed since it was written, events in India have moved rapidly during that short period. I adhere to the opinions expressed in that essay so far as they go, but it will be obvious to any one who has paid attention to Indian affairs that, if the subject had to be treated now, many very important issues, to which I have not alluded, would have to be imported into the discussion. CROMER. September 30, 1913. [Pg vii] CONTENTS PAGE "THE EDINBURGH REVIEW" I. THE GOVERNMENT OF SUBJECT RACES II. TRANSLATION AND PARAPHRASE 3 54 77 107 127 141 156 177 204 214 226 237 250 264 277 287 298 307 317 227 340 351 361 372 407 416 427 439 449 459 "THE QUARTERLY REVIEW" III. SIR ALFRED LYALL "THE NINETEENTH CENTURY AND AFTER" IV. ARMY REFORM V. THE INTERNATIONAL ASPECTS OF FREE TRADE VI. CHINA VII. THE CAPITULATIONS IN EGYPT "THE SPECTATOR" VIII. DISRAELI IX. RUSSIAN ROMANCE X. THE WRITING OF HISTORY XI. THE GREEK ANTHOLOGY XII. LORD MILNER AND PARTY XIII. THE FRENCH IN ALGERIA XIV. THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE [Pg viii] XV. WELLINGTONIANA XVI. BURMA XVII. A PSEUDO-HERO OF THE REVOLUTION XVIII. THE FUTURE OF THE CLASSICS XIX. AN INDIAN IDEALIST XX. THE FISCAL QUESTION IN INDIA XXI. ROME AND MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT XXII. A ROYAL PHILOSOPHER XXIII. ANCIENT ART AND RITUAL XXIV. PORTUGUESE SLAVERY XXV. ENGLAND AND ISLAM XXVI. SOME INDIAN PROBLEMS XXVII. THE NAPOLEON OF TAINE XXVIII. SONGS, PATRIOTIC AND NATIONAL XXIX. SONGS, NAVAL AND MILITARY INDEX "THE EDINBURGH REVIEW" [Pg 3] I THE GOVERNMENT OF SUBJECT RACES[1] "The Edinburgh Review," January 1908 The "courtly Claudian," as Mr. Hodgkin, in his admirable and instructive work, calls the poet of the Roman decadence, concluded some lines which have often been quoted as applicable to the British Empire, with the dogmatic assertion that no limit could be assigned to the duration of Roman sway. Nec terminus unquam Romanae ditionis erit. At the time this hazardous prophecy was made, the huge overgrown Roman Empire was tottering to its fall. Does a similar fate await the British Empire? Are we so far self-deceived, and are we so incapable of peering into the future as to be unable to see that many of the steps which now appear calculated to enhance and to stereotype Anglo-Saxon domination, are but the precursors of a period of national decay and senility? A thorough examination of this vital question would necessarily involve the treatment of a great variety of subjects. The heart of the British Empire is to be found in Great Britain. It is not proposed in this place to deal either with the working of British political institutions, or with the various important social and economic problems which the actual condition of England presents, but only with the extremities of the body politic, and more especially with those where the inhabitants of the countries under British rule are not of Anglo-Saxon origin. What should be the profession of faith of a sound but reasonable Imperialist? He will not be possessed with any secret desire to see the whole of Africa or of Asia painted red on the maps. He will entertain not only a moral dislike, but also a political mistrust of that excessive earth-hunger, which views with jealous eyes the extension of other and neighbouring European nations. He will have no fear of competition. He will believe that, in the treatment of subject races, the methods of government practised by England, though sometimes open to legitimate criticism, are superior, morally and economically, to those of any other foreign nation; and that, strong in the possession and maintenance of those methods, we shall be able to hold our own against all competitors. On the other hand, he will have no sympathy with those who, as Lord Cromer said in a recent speech, "are so fearful of Imperial greatness that they are unwilling that we should accomplish our manifest destiny, and who would thus have us sink into political insignificance by refusing the main title which makes us great." An Imperial policy must, of course, be carried out with reasonable prudence, and the principles of government which guide our relations with whatsoever races are brought under our control must be politically and economically sound and morally defensible. This is, in fact, the keystone of the Imperial arch. The main justification of Imperialism is to be found in the use which is made of the Imperial power. If we make a good use of our power, we may face the future without fear that we shall be overtaken by the Nemesis which attended Roman misrule. If the reverse is the case, the British Empire will deserve to fall, and of a surety it will ultimately fall. There is truth in the saying, of which perhaps we sometimes hear rather too much, that the maintenance of the Empire depends on the sword; but so little does it depend on the sword alone that if once we have to draw the sword, not merely to suppress some local effervescence, but to overcome a general upheaval of subject races goaded to action either by deliberate oppression, which is highly improbable, or by unintentional misgovernment, which is far more conceivable, the sword will assuredly be powerless to defend us for long, and the days