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a less masculine order, or beneath the The best-known, deservedly the most roof of a friend's or relative's domicile popular, not less than the most sucin town. It is also to be remembered cessful of latter-day hostesses, the unithat, by the men, whose personal versally-lamented Madame de Falbe, tastes have exercised an abiding intlu- based her social arrangements on ence on the hospitable arrangements frank recognition of this development. ef the London season, political re- Nobody ever understood better the unions in private drawing-rooms. were polite spirit of her age. At her own not regarded with much favor. The home, to the great good of her poorer Society into which went Mr. Glad- neighbors, she seemed almost to have stone was academic, theological, liter- taken as the motto for her daily life ary, but, for choice, as little political the opening words of Mr. Disraeli's as possible. Mr. Disraeli's idea of So- Manchester speech, which, a generaciety something that diverted tion since, everyone was quoting: him. The latest of his writings con- "Sanitas Sanitatum, omnia Sanitas." tain the most instructive contrast ever The two opposite tendencies of prac. drawn between the dull place, which tical beneficence, and social enjoythe early Victorian London was, and ment met together in the parties now the very amusing city which in later spoken of; for the very smartest set of years it had become.
smart Society, thanks to such infu. The facts now reviewed may ex- ences as those of the late Duchess of plain why, during the London season Teck and of our whole Royal Family, of 1900, so many political houses have while on one side it is bounded by the been closed. One after another, the ladies' lawn or the racecourse, on the existing representatives of whole dy- other stretches into the province of nasties of traditional hostesses cause it philanthropic reform. Smart Society, to be known that they have ceased to to use the phrase to-day on so many give political parties. In the sense that lips, may, perhaps, be said to consist it is no longer organized upon a politi- of good-looking and well-dressed young cal basis, Society, therefore, has ceased women, and their friends; beauty, to exist; its place is already taken by whether in music, art, decoration, or gangs. The present Bishop of Lon- dress and general appearance, is one don, writing of fourteenth or fifteenth- of the notes by which these coteries century life, has remarked that then may be recognized, so, too, are a sysEurope, as one knows it now, had not tematic restlessness and absence of all come into being; from the Black Sea conventionalism. Neither the thing it. to the Atlantic there was one order of self, nor the expression, would hare Society; of nearly the same composi- been so much heard of, but for the tion in all countries, which lived for fashionable ascendancy of late acpleasure or excitement, for war or for quired by the Transatlantic element in sport; there was another class of a polite life. very different kind, which struggled When Thackeray wrote “Pendennis" to exist. Between the Danube and the -for many years indeed, after that-a Thames may now be found something certain province known as Bohemia, like a reproduction of the older experi- with well-defined limits and a distinct ence. As an agency for uniting into population of its own, had a place in one social interest the comfortable the social map of London. The tastes classes of all Europe, not less than of and attributes, of which this region England, the Turf has long since taken may have been the earliest home, precedence of politics or diplomacy. leaven to-day more appreciably than has ever before been the case the whole of the political sort. The new book, social mass; the district itself no dealing with a later period, shows the longer boasts a geographical and inde- reader the social forces dominating the pendent existence of its own. Bobe
new epoch. Their interest consemia, once a place, is now an ubiqui- quently, though social throughout in tously penetrating influence or fashion. everything outside public affairs, is litA like fate has long been overtaking erary or scientific rather than political. the political province of social life on During the years now covered by Sir the Thames. An active interest in the Mountstuart Grant Duff there existed issues, aims and conflicts of states- in Hertford Street, Mayfair, an host manship to-day to an extent never and hostess of that new order reflected known before, is diffused through all in Sir Mountstuart's pages. Of this pair classes and all neighborhoods; an ex- Sir William Priestley has, to the loss clusively political Society is therefore of science in Parliament and to the renearly a thing of the past. Hence the gret of his personal friends, just disappearance of the political host or passed away. Those who knew his Lonhostess. In that sense only is Gre- don house during the years now looked ville's generalization verified by back upon will always connect its culevents. As a fact, the whole body poli. tured and graceful hospitality with the tic, high or low, seems, in the manner infusion into London society of some now described, to be a gainer by the among those ideas and interests which substitution of non-political for the have reorganized, upon the non-politipolitical divisions which once sep- cal foundation described by the somearated the social sections. The disin. time Governor of Madras, the social tegrating movement has long been system which, to Greville, had neither operative in the party system at West- meaning nor attraction, save in referminster. That movement is less revo- ence to politics. lutionary, and more of a reversion to The transition from the older régime our earlier constitutional use than is to that now existing has involved cersometimes remembered. One need not, tain organic changes, worthy indeed of therefore, be surprised if while in Par- some notice, though by no means so liament a party system is held in solu- serious as they have been occasionally tion, its social organization in Bel- represented. The antagonism between gravia or in Mayfair be in a state of the old acres and the new wealth now suspended animation also. As a whole, scarcely survives even on the stage, In English Society never contained more real life those whose social ascent is elements of varied and vigorous vital. supposed to have been by a golden ladity than it possesses at the present der during several generations have day. In due time the gangs will give been thoroughly imbued with all the place to new and perhaps better amal- tastes, fancies, prejudicesfortes and gamations than the old.
foibles, social or political, of aristocThe organization of the polite world racy. The fusion, since 1863, when the for social purposes on other than politi- Prince of Wales was established at cal bases is, as we have seen, instruc- Marlborough House, effected between tively not less than entertainingly il- the two traditionally hostile elements lustrated in the last instalment by Sir has long been so complete as to leave Mountstuart Grant Duff of his notes small trace of an independent existence from a diary. The earlier volumes on the part of either. abounded in life-like sketches of social On the other hand, the growing costreunions and of social leaders, largely liness of fashionable London tends to
exclude from its most modish circles a are the dinners and suppers at the class that could perhaps ill be spared. smart restaurants, which, since the That phenomenon, however, is not pe- closing of the famous Boulevard cafés, culiar to the capital. It is to be found seem to have been transported from in all parts of the provinces; it is but the Seine to the Thames. These places one of the many indications of the are found by the country cousin of the changes inseparable from the substitu- better sort to be, not only intolerably tion of commerce for land as a founda- costly, but invidiously exclusive. Our tion of national prosperity. Every country gentleman, up for Ascot week, where the class of smaller country enters one of such caravanserais to find gentlemen complains of being elbowed all the best places taken a week in adout of the way by retired traders vance by some Amphitryon whose very whose rural ambitions and whose lib- name is as strange to him as those of eral offers constrain the squires with the South African kopjes which puzzle heavily dipped estates to let their fam. him in The Times. If he secures & ily seats with all shooting rights to the seat at another of these establishbanker or brewer who has grown rich ments a little farther down Piccadilly, in the country town. County society at the next table to his there will be in most parts of England retains to- a party of golden youth, spending on day the same tone and color that it had their menu and wine card what, in his before County Councils and District generation, sufficed the middle-aged Boards were the creations of Parlia. visitor from the shires for a year's almentary statue. So it is with that so- lowance at Christ Church. ciety in the Metropolis, whose founda- Thus, two movements of a mutually tion is spoken of as plutocratic instead opposite character may be noticed in of aristocratic. No new chapter in our those regions now dealt with. On the polite development really bas been one hand the disappearance of the opened. It is the
London, political hostess and of much which whether in town or out of it, which that fact implies has given place to a Charles Greville, George Payne, Alfred social organization more varied, more Montgomery knew. But while Society truly reflecting the business, the pleashas in this way, become more nation- ures, the interest and pursuits of con. ally representative, indescribably more temporary life, for which every reason. cosmopolitan, and, as Lord Beacons- ably qualified aspirant is eligible--field found out, vastly more amusing, without any voucher from great ladies its entertainments have grown in ex. or other persons of quality, such as pense, while the introduction of certain used to bar the entrance to Almack's, Parisian ways have further increased or to less historic and more modern rethe financial burdens of the summer sorts. If the political hostess were, as on the Thames to a figure prohibitive she long continued to be, the sole or to whole orders which, in earlier years the dominant representative enter. of the Queen's reign were seldom ab- tainer, the Society of the period might sent from the capital between the be in danger of losing much of that meeting and rising of Parliament. The present salt which acts as an antisepsingle item of flowers for the dining- tic to certain forms of vulgarity as table or drawing-room seems to-day a well as of decay. A price like that just consideration only less serious than indicated has indeed to be paid for was once a season's rental of a little this variety. But when one remembers house conveniently situated for St. the amount of philanthropic work of Stephen's and Hyde Park. Then there perennial as well as practical interest in the welfare of all classes, and in all always operated as a force invigoratefforts for national improvement, but ing alike the varied interest and inthinly veiled by the surface frivolity, dividuals constituting the complex few will think there is reason to regret whole known as Society. That stimuthe division and subdivision of the lating instinct of the English people is polite world into those sets which Gre- not less active now than in past years. ville called gangs, but which really Greville, as has been seen, recognized testify to new modes of social life, an- the natural leader of Society in the imating, for the most part not un- wearer of the crown. During the healthily, the whole constitution of the present reign the monarchy has bebody politic. As a man of fashion and come a synonym for all those manifesof society, Greville was a cynosure of
tations of social beneficence which his day. No man was less of a trifler, have attracted, the
of or really looked at life in a more seri. Madame de Falbe shows, the smartest ous light. It was this inborn earnest- society itself, and by doing so have ness of the Anglo-Saxon race which made superficial frivolity a serious in. colored Greville's social ideas that has strument for national well-being.
T. H. 8. Escott. The Fortnightly Review.
DERWENT FINDLAY, Q.C.
Derwent Findlay, Q.C., fifty and fur- correctly written out on a sheet of rowed, poked the fire into a blaze and brief-paper, plans which for twentytook down an old pipe from the shelf. four years he had carried out conscienHis window looked into Planetree tiously. There was a sheet of briefCourt, but the curtains were drawn paper on the table, but it was blank and the perspective of gaunt houses except for the heading, very neat and with the dusty windows saying exact, like all of his work, "My "Chambers” as plainly as their plain plans." faces could, the uneven flags of the He drew his dressing-gown round court, the consumptive trees gathering himself sharply, and the tobacco jar dust and smoke, the consumptive cats, towards him. To do this he had to and the old pumps were all blotted turn, and in turning he saw the extent out.
of his room-study, smoking-room, din. Next day the long vacation would ing-room, in one-for with worldly proscommence. There were no briefs in the perity he had deviated in no way from blue bag under the table, the judge had the style of living he had practised as been jaunty on the bench in full view a junior. The room was neat and preof a round of country visits, th cise with the neatness and precision of juniors had been noisy, and there had a well-drilled charwoman. It looked been the air of approaching holiday comfortless, and he saw it for the first which had dimly hastened his pulse time. He filled his pipe quickly, rose for the last twenty-five years.
and stepped over to the lamp smoking Findlay, Q.C., had won his case, had on the table, lit his pipe by it and added to a long list of victories gained turned the wick down. Then he went by his peculiar doggedness, had earned back to his easy-chair, and thrust his his rest, had indeed everything that slippered feet towards the fire. It had should have made him content-but he been raining, and although midsumwas not. His fire-poking was pettish, mer the night was chill and cheerless. his pipe seemed tasteless, the lamp “Fifty years old-and at twenty-five smoked unwarrantably, he was I was doing just the same, living in conscious that the red and green dress- the same rooms, prosing in the same ing-gown he had purchased fifteen courts, going to the same club, eating years ago in an Indian bazaar was at the same restaurant in the Strand. growing faded.
Twenty-five years—dear me, what & “Hullo, Findlay, going abroad?” long time, what a very long time. And Mervyn had asked-Mervyn, the an- all this time I have been quite content tagonist always pitted against him in to be a machine, getting a little older patent cases, and his most intimate every year, but otherwise exactly the crony of private life, and he had an- same for twenty-five years. Now I am swered shortly
beginning to wake up. Oh, it's pre“Don't know. Plans not made yet.” posterous!-I am an old fogey, a con
That was the difficulty, he could not firmed old bachelor. 1-dear me, it's settle any point as to his movements. very curious how her face haunts me. Twenty-four long vacations had found Nineteen years old. Quite a child. him prepared with plans neatly and Why, God bless my soul, I gave her a