For the latest news from Scotland see our ScotNews feed at:

Electric Scotland News

It’s time for you Tory Brexiteers to grow up
By Kathy Gyngell in

It’s just over a year now since we published Michael St George’s warning that the Brexit Movement must re-constitute itself, and fight the Brexit battle all over again, if the referendum result were not to be betrayed. He was right, and it hasn’t (yet). Which is why we are republishing his prophetic article in full today.

The sad fact is that the Brexiteers (many from the original Vote Leave campaign) have continued to make one catastrophic error after another. That they were divided and jealous from the start didn’t help, nor did their belief that the Referendum result meant job done and they could pack up, go home and just carp from behind the scenes as they saw it all go pear-shaped, when they should have been working together on a road map for the clean Brexit that the people voted for. That this itself allowed the ‘remainer’ May to ’implement’ Brexit has proved catastrophic. So, too, has the startling naivety of many of these long-term Euro-sceptics in thinking that the EU, for whom Brexit is indeed an existential crisis, would ever agree to anything other than a punishment beating for our defiance. Which is what of course the Withdrawal Agreement is, however much Mrs May so brazenly spins and sugar-coats it.

The time is very much overdue for a reconstituted Leave campaign, but it is still not too late. Tory MPs and the party’s veteran Euro-sceptics have one last chance to redeem themselves and save the country, before they find themselves for ever on history’s Wall of Shame.

First, together they need publicly to repudiate the Withdrawal Agreement outright, (they can no longer kid themselves there is any room for negotiation or that the self-declared intransigent Mrs May has any intention of budging) and together announce unequivocally that they WILL vote against it. They need to stop waffling (savaging a dead sheep is what I’d call this) and explain in language that resonates – that this is a divorce that no sane couple would agree to for example – the terrible straight-jacket the Prime Minister would tie her country in. The public need to hear their deep dismay that any British Prime Minister knowingly, in a legally unprecedented move, would lock the country into an agreement with no way out.

Second, together they must start promoting a No-Deal (or WTO deal) fast. For, as Melanie Phillips explains,

‘The result of their farcical havering over whether or not to bring down the Prime Minister has allowed two potentially disastrous things to happen.

‘Rather than being seen correctly as someone who is about to betray the people and sign the death warrant for national self-government, Mrs May is now being viewed sympathetically as doggedly carrying on in the face of bullying by both her fellow Tory MPs and the EU’s negotiators.

‘And while the Brexiteers have been marching themselves up the hill and down again over Mrs May, they have allowed the view that no-deal would be a disaster to go unchallenged.

‘In fact, the only realistic way in which the UK will be able to leave the EU is through no-deal. Yet the majority in parliament – and possibly in the country – are so thoroughly spooked by no-deal they oppose it. But there are good, cogent, evidence-based arguments why no-deal would not be a disaster but would be entirely manageable.’.

OK, there may be some loss of face – David Davis might have to finally acknowledge that Canada Plus isn’t happening. IDS may have to accept that his former position of party leader holds no sway with May and that all she’s done is use him and run rings around all of them.

That is the truth of it, unless they want Mrs May taking them for fools through or even beyond the next election, it’s time to abandon their illusions and face the truth. Which is this: the only deals in town are her dreadful deal, or a No-Deal. Making the public case for for the latter – a No-Deal that never was anything to fear – is now, as Melanie writes, ‘a matter of the utmost urgency’. And the case for it needs to be made ‘as loudly and thoroughly as possible’.

David Davis, Dominic Raab, Boris Johnson, Iain Duncan Smith, John Redwood, Bernard Jenkin and Co have a very short time to step up to the plate – they really are in the last chance saloon for Brexit and electorally – and demonstrate for once in their political lives they can transcend ego, do this and act as a team. And, instead of forever testing the wind to see which way power in the party is blowing, put their country before their party.

If there was truly a time for them to grow up, it is now.

And the article discussed above is.... Why we need to fight the Brexit battle all over again, by Michael St George which you can read at:

And I will add that in my view far too many British people seem defeatist in their view of Britain. We can see Germany wanting to win another world war but this time through economics. I am sure the two world war armed forces are turning in their graves over this capitulation to Germany and the EU. As for France... albeit the Auld Alliance was to France's benefit and not Scotland's they are still wanting to hit the UK with Macron recent rant on how he'll tie us into the EU for ever if he doesn't get his way on fishing rights. And then Spain trying to bully us over Gibraltar.

Why have we no pride in Britain? We know for a fact that our useless Prime Minister is a liar and thus a traitor to our country as is our Finance Minister and the Bank of England Governor, albeit a Canadian, has constantly got his projections wrong. All their fear projections have proved to be lies. You simply can no longer trust them. And as for the majority of MP's.. they have shown their ego's are far more important to them than doing what is right for the country. Not one cabinet minister has the guts to stand up for Britain. None of them should even be considered as a future Prime Minister for sure!

And frankly I am of the opinion that our current Prima Minister is mentally damaged. She continues to lie to us and if you simply look at her letter to the British people it's beyond belief that anyone can believe her.

A no deal scenario is now the only way we should leave the EU and that should happen in March next year and we'll just trade on WTO terms. No transition period is needed we just leave and get on with it. And let us remember that dealing with the Commonwealth countries, USA and China is the way forward to make us a successful and profitable nation.

We must take back control from the MP's that can't support Britain and deselect them at the next election. The future is in our hands if we only have courage and belief in Britain.


The oldest documented family history with dna matching in the UK is Fleming Buccleuch which takes you back to the 11th century.


Here is the video introduction to this newsletter...

Scottish News from this weeks newspapers
Note that this is a selection and more can be read in our ScotNews feed on our index page where we list news from the past 1-2 weeks. I am partly doing this to build an archive of modern news from and about Scotland as all the newsletters are archived and also indexed on Google and other search engines. I might also add that in newspapers such as the Guardian, Scotsman, Courier, etc. you will find many comments which can be just as interesting as the news story itself and of course you can also add your own comments if you wish.

Iron Age Celtic Chariot Unearthed - Amazingly Decorated
The chariot could be 2,500 years old, and while there is some speculation that a chieftain or queen would have been buried with it, no human remains have yet been found

Read more at:

Why LBC has the BBC rattled
The former head of BBC Television News, Roger Mosey, is becoming required reading in the New Statesman. His latest piece explains why the startling growth of the London-based talk radio station LBC, along with the punchiness of its editorial proposition, is ‘unsettling’ the BBC.

Read more at:

European Curling Championships
Scotland beat Sweden to secure gold medal

Read more at:

Parliament cannot simply ‘block No Deal’ as some are claiming it’s the default option
Nor is it possible to surmise how the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer can plausibly make the case that there is a good chance of a No Brexit.

Read more at:

HMS Duncan: Scots-built Royal Navy warship swarmed by unprecedented Russian jets in new footage
Dramatic footage is being released of the moment a Scots-built warship was swarmed by 17 Russian jets as she led a Nato fleet through the Black Sea.

Read more at:

The female shipbuilder cast aside after the war
Janet Harvey worked on some of the biggest battleships built during World War Two but when the conflict was over she was cast aside as the men took over once again.

Read more at:

Trump says Brexit agreement may hamper U.S.-British trade
U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday the agreement allowing the United Kingdom to leave the European Union may make trade between Washington and London more difficult

Read more at:

Fact-checking the dubious Withdrawal Agreement arguments being put to MPs
Over the past few days, we have been made aware of some extremely dubious arguments being made to try and convince wavering Conservative MPs to vote in favour of the draft Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the EU

Read more at:

Dandie Dinmont breed sees light at end of tunnel
The Dandie Dinmont terrier - named after a Sir Walter Scott character - has been described as Scotland's forgotten breed

Read more at:

The Staircase lawyer David Rudolf backs not proven verdict
US lawyer David Rudolf, who features in the documentary series The Staircase, finds Scotland's unique three-verdict legal system fascinating.

Read more at:

Outlander: The real Highlanders of North Carolina
The new season of Outlander follows lead characters Claire and Jamie Fraser as they make their new life in North Carolina during the mid 18th Century.

Read more at:

Australia's wild weather floods Sydney; fans deadly bushfires
Torrential rain and gale force winds lashed Australia’s biggest city Sydney on Wednesday causing commuter chaos, flooding streets, railway stations and homes, grounding flights and leaving hundreds of people without electricity.

Read more at:

Brave Scots in the New World
Marcy Leavitt Bourne's Television

Read more at:

Here is the location of Edinburgh’s singing Christmas postbox
The sound of sleigh bells or a jolly message from Father Christmas will greet anyone sending mail at the special postboxes in the coming weeks

Read more at:

This Edinburgh chippy is selling deep fried Christmas puddings
Popular East End chip shop, Cafe Piccante, is now advertising the deep fried dessert on a poster in its window.

Read more at:

These Islands
A podcast with Kevin Hague the Chokka Blog guy.

Listen to this at:

UK and US agree post-Brexit flights deal
The arrangement means airlines would continue to fly from the UK to the US after Brexit, the Department for Transport (DfT) said.

Read more at:

The Bank of England’s Brexit forecasts aren’t just wrong. They’re absurd
Paul Krugman - no fan of Brexit - has accused the Bank of England of motivated reasoning in its forecasts

Read more at:

Electric Canadian

Mining Review
Added the volume for 1922 at:

The Canadian Horticulturist
Added volume 4, published by the Fruit Growers Association of Ontario.

You can read this at:

Canadian Archive Reports
Added the 1884 report.

You can read this at:

Intercepted Letters to the Duke de Mirepoix, 1756
Before his resignation from the Commission, Dr. Douglas Brymner, Archivist of the Dominion of Canada, selected from the materials under his command the following letters, and had them copied for the Commission (pdf)

You can read these at:

The Jamaica Maroons
How they came to Nora Scotia — How they left it (pdf)

You can read this at:

Mineral Resources of Canada
To Celebrate The Visit of the British and Continental Mining Engineers and Metallurgists to Canada in the Summer of 1908 published by the Canadian Mining Journal (1908) (pdf)

You can read this at:

Monograph of the Déné - Dindjié Indians
By the Rev. E. Petitot, Oslay Missionary, translated by Douglas Brymner (pdf)

You can read this at:

The Twa Mongrels
A Modern Eclogue by Tummus Teeddles (1876) which you can read this at:

Electric Scotland

Lady Jean
The Romance of the Great Douglas Cause By Percy Fitzgerald, F.S.A. (1904)

You can read this at:

A Little Book of Christmas
By John Kendrick Bangs (1912) (pdf). Great wee stories which I'm sure you will enjoy.

You can read this book at:

Andrew Young of Edinburgh (1807-1889)
I got sent in a picture of his wife with some notes which I've added to his page. You can get to this at:

The Catholic Highlands of Scotland
By Dom. Odo Blundell, O.S.B., FSA SCOT in two volumes (1909). Added links to these volumes towards the foot of the page.

You can read this at:

Ancient Catholic homes of Scotland
By Dom. Odo Blundell, O.S.B., FSA SCOT (1907)

You can read this at:

Scott and Scotland
By Leitch Ritchie (1835) (pdf)

An interesting book which offers some interesting slants on Scottish history and you can read this at:

The History of the Scottish Society of Indianapolis (1983-2018)
By Carson C. Smith, FSA Scot (pdf)

You can read this at:

History of the Church of Scotland
From the Introduction of Christianity to the Period of the Disruption in 1843 by the Rev. W. M. Hetherington, A.M. (1851) (pdf)

A really excellent one volume book on the church's history and you can read this at:

The Naval History of Great Britain
From the Declaration of War by France in 1793 to the Accession of George IV by William James, a new edition with additions and notes, Also an account of the Burmese War and the Battle of Navarino by Captain Chamier, R.N. in six volumes (1837)

You can this at:

The Story

This is a story taken from Tait's Edinburgh Magazine in 1851...

Queen Victoria in 1851

The present year is the fifteenth of the reign of Victoria; and after the experience of a period which may be said to embrace a generation, it may not be deemed premature or irrelevant if we now take a brief view of the character and demeanour of the existing Sovereign of this mighty empire. We do not wish to anticipate the labour of a future Pepys or Macaulay. We have no friend at Court to give us palace scandal or royal gossip, and if we had, we respect the sanctity of domestic life too much to propagate information of such questionable propriety. Nor, on the other hand, do we wish to make any contribution to State history. Our sole object is to treat of the public and palpable principles on which our present monarch discharges the duties of her exalted office. The constitutional maxim, that the Sovereign can do no wrong, seems in our day to be in one sense reversed. The Queen can do no wrong, so that we are denied the privilege of accusing her; and as a corollary, the nation seems to be of opinion, that although she does good, the elevation of position which absolves her from responsibility is such as prevents her subjects from expressing their satisfaction with, and gratitude for, her virtues. Beyond censure, we conclude that she is above praise. One of the misfortunes of royalty is its pedestal exaltation, as it removes it from the ordinary sympathies of nature, and makes that which may be really cordial assume the aspect of constraint and formality. It is not enough that the people vote supplies to the Sovereign, or give them hat and lip applause when royalty appears in public. Most, if not all, of the chief magistrates of this nation have been accustomed to services and compliments of these descriptions, so that money and street popularity have long since ceased to be peculiar exponents of popular gratitude to the throne. Charles II., despite the assertion of Dr. Johnson, was not one of the best of kings, and yet Parliament voted or connived at his receiving about a million a-year, whilst Queen Victoria’s civil list is 385,000Z.; and making eveiy allowance for the relief granted in modern times to the purse of the Crown, still the pecuniary gratitude of the country to the “ merry monarch” was greater than has been awarded to the Queen. And as to out-door plaudits, Charles was as well received in the streets of London as ever Victoria has been. The divinity that hedges a king does indeed produce remarkable effects. George IV., about the time of the trial of Queen Caroline, did much which one would think was calculated to cool the loyalty of his subjects, but the instant he visited Edinburgh and Dublin the bagpipe and the harp sounded their highest notes to bid him welcomed just as cordially as if his reputation had never received a stain.

Mere personal popularity, then, as applied to a Sovereign, means little; its absence would be a serious matter, but its existence does not indicate great depth of feeling. In chemistry there is a latent heat which thermometric measurement cannot tell; and so in like manner, as we are equally benignant to our crowned potentates, whether good, bad, or indifferent, there must, during the present reign, be an amount of devotion to the throne which neither parliamentary supplies nor huzzas can adequately express. Our motto is, “ Honour to whom honour is due.” The Queen has received nothing from us that her predecessors have not received before, but we have received that from her which we did not receive from her predecessor’s; and therefore we are bound to give due expression to our convictions on this point. There are perhaps some who may regard these as strange opinions to emanate from the Liberal school of politics, but a thorough going Liberalism must be just, and honest, and fearless. We are Liberal, Radical, if you will, but not Republican. A monarchy exists among us, whether by divine right or not we shall not curiously inquire; that monarchy has, for the last fifteen years, been so conducted as it never was before—been so conducted as to give the fullest scope for the development of Liberal principles; and we were cravens did we hesitate frankly to acknowledge our obligations to the illustrious lady to whom we are in such large measure indebted for these important results.

We have had three Parliaments and three Administrations since Victoria ascended the throne; and she has held tho reins so steadily that no one can tell whether her leanings be in favour of Whiggism or Toryism. She has not intrigued for the downfall of one administration in order to make way for another. No sooner does a Minister tender Ins resignation than he is asked, “Who should be sent for ?” The party suggested is sent for. If he accept office, it is well—the royal favour is extended to him, and all goes smoothly; if he do not accept office, and if a third decline office, the first incumbent resumes his functions, and still all is smooth; and this we regard as impartiality of the highest type. The king or queen who heads or supports any given section of politicians ceases to be a Sovereign in the large sense of the term, and becomes a mere partisan. George III. and George IV. were continually interfering in the internal affairs of the state, and rival parties regarded them as personal combatants, and not as dignified arbiters in the impending struggle. Queen Victoria, on the other hand, wields the sceptre in an atmosphere of calm serenity, recognising the principle that the Government of this country substantially rests with the people, and that her sphere is administrative more than legislative ; she waits till the feuds of contesting parties subside, and then gives effect to prevailing influence. It is indeed true, that the gradual although almost imperceptible progress of constitutional government has practically diminished the prerogatives of the Crown and the House of Lords, and silently augmented the potency of the House of Commons; but this does not invalidate the credit to which Victoria is entitled as a constitutional Sovereign. National liberty would have advanced in our day, although a queen opposed to liberal opinions had sat on the throne, but the cause could not have made such rapid or smooth and agreeable progress as it has done under the auspices of Queen Victoria. When the late revolutions broke out on the Continent, the ground-swell reached Britain, but our constitutional system, like a mountain bulwark, opposed its massive slope to the onward tide, and its waters swelled in vain. Had Ernest, King or Elector of Hanover, been our liege lord, we shall not venture to predict whither those waters might not have gone. We do not wish to speak disparagingly even of the anointed of the Orange Lodges, but, during the crisis in question, we should not have felt as secure under his sway as we did under that of his niece. Nay more, there are many Gf our dukes and nobles wise in their generation, who make speeches and otherwise essay to rule the nation, whom we are < glad to know do not belong to the royal line, as we : are very confident that had they wielded the sceptre < something more than the repeal of the com-laws would have been added to their afflictions.

It were a mistake to conclude that this absti- j nence from active participation in the game of politics arises from indifference or facility of dis- : position, because if this were the case one party or other would gain the ascendancy at Court, or failing that, the royal influence would vacillate between the contending sections. Indifferentism would allow the strongest party to ride triumphant, and facility would in turn veer to all points of the compass. A steady sustained neutrality is not a negative quality; it is, on the contrary, something that is eminently positive. It is a something that must resist the encroaching as well as support the retiring. It is a something that requires a clear eye, a steady hand and a bold heart; for amidst the clamour of contending parties it requires some discretion to ascertain in what neutrality really consists, and having ascertained it, it requires moral courage to preserve this strict neutrality intact. The tendency to grasp at power is instinctive ; Queen Victoria must have had many opportunities to augment hers, but has wisely resisted.

One sometimes is enabled to see truth more clearly by contrasting small things with great, and we shall attempt that method on the present occasion. We all know about mayors in London and the provinces, and how, when those functionaries assume their high offices, they dilate in magniloquent terms on the dignity of impartiality, and signify their rigid determination to be the burgomasters, not of any sect or party, but the Syndics of the whole community. How many mayors or borough reeves keep their pledges? Do they not drag the ermine through the mire before they are in office for a few months ? And are they not to be found scrambling amongst their constituencies as keenly as the most violent partisans in the whole district ? The example oi the Queen never seems to have occurred to these magnates, and much are we afraid that even royalty itself will continue to fail in impressing them in this respect, until the corporative mind assumes a higher altitude of reflection. The town-councils of o® cities have water-pipes and policemen, corn-note and races, to disturb their equanimity; and yet, with such petty elements of discord, their dnefe cannot bear the mace aloft but must sink the magistrate in the borough politician.

During the fifteen years that the crown of Great Britain has pressed on the brow of Victoria, we have had revolts in Canada, Afghan and Sikh wars, Chinese wars, boundary-disputes with the United States, revolts in Ireland, Papal Aggressions, Chartist riots, com and navigation citations, &c., not to speak of European revolutions. On all these matters, and in their numerous collateral ramifications, although doubtless holding her own peculiar views, the Queen’s voice has not been heard; her Ministers, as the representative of the people, have done all. The prerogatives of monarchy centre in her person, not dormant because unexercised, but simply waiting until required to be called forth by some extraordinary emergency-In that slow but sure gravitation towards the strong government of the people which causes the three great powers of the country to work harmoniously, few things occur which require to be placed in category of the extraordinary. Industry well developed, the people intelligent, the rulers versed w diplomacy, what can occur to call forth the veto of the Throne or the summary dissolution of the Parliament? What if continental kings are frightened into giving constitutions to their people, we have been taught by our National Debt to mind our own affairs and to intermeddle not with those of our neighbours. If Irish rebellions are got up in cabbage-fields, we can safely leave a railway-guard to collar the ringleader, and the thing is at an end. Or if Chartist rioters threaten the peace of towns, we have only to put batons into the hands of our intelligent mechanics, and there is no more disturbance. The Queen’s prerogative is as much in desuetude as the State axe in the Tower. But was it so in her grandfather’s time? It was not: the current of Liberalism began to flow in his reign; he resisted It, and the Throne became a seat of thorns. The Regency and reign of George IV. were a repetition of the same tale.

To be respected, high functions must not often be exercised. The Papacy was never so much despised as when it was continually fulminating and pouring forth its anathemas, and parading bell, book and candle; and so, in like manner, if we see a king exercising his veto and dissolving Parliament almost every other year, as was the case with James I., Charles I., Charles II., and James II., we may rest assured there is little wisdom at Court, and that ruin or revolution is close at hand. Speculative Monarchists would say that powers allowed to fall into abeyance are apt to become extinct; and they would probably plead for a more active exemplification of royalty than we have been eulogising. But they would be wrong. The foundations of monarchy during the wildest days of divine right were never so strong as they are at the present moment, when the masses look on monarchy as a hereditary institution, an expedient arrangement, or a something which has its foundations so stable that all attempts to undermine it were useless. We hear Chartists laughing at the House of Lords and grumbling at the House of Commons, but we never hear a word against the Throne, except in the most abstract shape, and never a syllable against the Queen personally. Indeed, if we except our American visitors, who have a morbid aversion to crowns and sceptres, and who apparently are annoyed that we do not enjoy the triennial luxury of their presidential contests, we are tware of no dass, home, colonial, or foreign that loos not rejoice under the mild and intelligent Wray of Queen Victoria.

No one can read the history of England as repealed in biography and other internal sources without observing that in all the leadings of the day there was a Court side. A young senator entering Parliament bed with the hope of rising to high office, him being told by a whipper-in on the ht that he is called on to give an important "If you vote so-and-so you will offend the part.” What a stumbling-block this to virtue! lawyers and clergy, they too must walk circumectly; and as at one period judges were paid rectly by the Crown, there can be little doubt that dice has often been deaf as well as blind. From this we have been delivered during the rein of Victoria; we were beginning to shake ourselves clear in the days of King William IV., but good church-building Adelaide was too Conservative in her notions to allow full development. Now, however, we may be said to be free from Court fear. People may do this or that to gain the smiles or avoid the frowns of Lord John Russell or the Minister for the time being, but the insulation of the Queen is so thoroughly complete that reward or revenge at her hands is not considered as falling within the range of probability. Even in personal matters the royal composure does not appear to be affected. It will be recollected that immediately after her Majesty’s marriage, Lord John Russell introduced a bill regarding the allowance to be made to Prince Albert. Sir Robert Peel supported an amendment that a smaller sum than the one named by Lord John should be voted; and backed by Mr. Hume and the economists, as well as by numerous Conservatives, the smaller sum carried the day. But we never heard that her Majesty or her Consort resented this movement. The sum proposed would doubtless have met with the approval of Lord John Russell, himself a Whig, and by necessity careful in the administration of the national finances; whilst the Opposition must have borne the ungracious aspect of economising economy, and of defeating a Liberal Administration on its own ground and with its own weapons; but, as we have just remarked, the sin does not appear to have been visited on Sir Robert Peel, unless we are prepared to trace a connexion between the celebrated “ bed-chamber plot,” and the stem parsimony of the ex-Minister. The promised “ Memoirs of Peel ” may throw some light on this as well as on more important matters; but as human nature does not generally suffer great evils to be inflicted and passed over in silence, we are fairly entitled, in the absence of public remonstrance, to infer that Sir Robert Peel was not seriously interfered with by the Crown in his abortive attempts to form an Administration.

In ordinary circumstances the marriage of a lady is nobody’s affair but her own; but one of the penalties attached to the office of Queen of England is, that a tie in which the meanest of her subjects is free to use her wildest discretion, the Sovereign is and most be trammelled by numerous relative considerations. Her own happiness and the welfare of the country require that the publie character and station of her intended consort must be taken into account to an extent that may trench harshly on that freedom which ever should guide in forming the marital relation. State marriages furnish many instances where domestic felicity has been sacrificed for supposed public good; whilst the subsequent history of those ill-judged connexions has resulted in more damage to public morals than any political benefit could ever atone for. Queen Victoria’s marriage has afforded a happy illustration of how public and private interests may meet and be subservient and beneficial to each other. The Queen might have given her hand to a British nobleman or commoner; but it is obvious that any individual having sufficient pretension to entitle him to such distinction must have occupied a place so conspicuous with the one great political party or the other, that from thenceforth the Queen’s name would have been a tower of strength to Whig or Tory. Passing from a British to an ultramontane husband, it was competent for her Majesty to have formed an alliance with a despotic power such as Austria or Prussia, with an intriguing one such as France, with a powerless and needy heir-apparent such as some of the smaller States of Germany. One or other of these courses was open to her; wealth of choice is said to make wit waver, and like Queen Elizabeth and other ladies embarrassed by a like cause, she might have abstained from matrimony; but in this view it is obvious that, considering who would have succeeded to the throne had she remained unmarried, the nation would have viewed with anxiety any declaration of celibacy on the part of the Queen. The exact end was gained by affiance with Prince Albert, her Majesty's cousin and second son of the reigning Duke of Saxe-Cobourg Gotha. The consanguinity of the parties added no new foreign connexions to the Court of St. James'; while from the circumstance of the Prince being only the second son of the ducal house, there was no danger of his being summoned to assume the sovereignty, or to have his thoughts engrossed by the Duchy of Saxe-Cobourg Gotha.

As to the character of Prince Albert, there can be but one opinion. Possessed of undoubted talent, he maintains a dignified seclusion; and instead of pushing himself forward to preside at public meetings, or to take part in the proceedings of learned societies, as many noblemen and gentlemen of less ability are constantly in the habit of doing, he has in almost every one of his public appearances been solicited, or rather urged, to come forward. His public appearances have not been numerous, but they have always been successful. His speeches at the meeting of the Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge and at the Servants’ Institution, were models of what addresses of the kind should be. And as to his share in the Great Industrial Exhibition, we should probably have been disposed to say more on that head were it not that the subject has become hackneyed. All classes of men have swelled the chorus of his praise, from the unvarnished prose of Messrs. Fox and Henderson, the contractors of the building, up to the prose run mad of the author of the " Lily and the Bee.” And we are afraid of saying one word more, in case we should be thought guilty of joining in what seems likely to swell into a hymn of flunkey adulation. We believe the greatest merit of the Prince to have consisted in his untiring perseverance at the outset of the undertaking, and that in the face of discouragements of no ordinary kind. We have reason to believe that men high in office pooh-poo fad the idea of the Crystal Palace, that they looked on |t as a whim of the Prince

Consort, and tried by that "faint praise” so well known in criticism to strangle the bantling before I it had well begun to draw breath. To overcome ’ such obstacles would to movement-men have, perhaps, been no great difficulty; but to one who, holding an exalted position, had from the first made conscience of not prostituting it to political purposes; to one who, amidst the numerous party strifes incidental to a nation popularly governed as this is, had resolved to stand aloof from such contests ; to one who, consistently with his principles, had no Court influence to offer; to one, in short, who had adopted and chimed thoroughly in with the State policy of Queen Victoria—to such an one the objections made to the Exhibition in Ixhom must have presented themselves in a shape more formidable than the public at large may be wffing to believe. Industrial progress appears to haw been the only argument used, and it carried the day. The alleged difficulties vanished one by one, and the Exhibition became a great fact That much social enjoyment has been one result is undeniable ; and as to effects on arts and manufactures, time alone will develops them. America, which at first was said to have so signally foiled in its contribution to the World’s Fair, gave the mother-country several home lessons before that Fair came to an end; and if the display has only the single effect of making us speak more respectfully of our transatlantic brethren, and of causing us to emulate their success in those artistic efforts where their skill is superior to ours, an important end will be gained. As to the alleged effects of the Exhibition on trade and commerce we are not disposed to lay much stress. Traffic has its ehte and flows, arising from causes too remote to be distinctly appreciable by the masses, who are too apt to ascribe stagnation to the first tangible object that presents itself; and during the present lull the Exhibition is at once, and without much inquiry, made the scape-goat.

Wealth and station indispose all men to exertion ; and accustomed as we are to whole races of nobility who pass before us in stately pagmntiy without doing aught to distinguish themselves from the fathers who wore their coronets before, or thrir sons who will don them after, we are hard to relieve that a prince can be possessed of any ability-but in the case now under consideration we bear in mind that, reared in a humbler Court, and with no great expectations before him, F®66 Albert’s was just the species of mind that «s likely to improve under the liberal and expansive culture which characterises German education ® our day. The political may be stinted, but in other respects the training in Germany is second to none in Europe; and however it may have read counter to our preconceived notions, no question as to the fact that, born and in a continental state, Prince Albert has not we found unsuitable to occupy the second position of one of the freest nations in the world.

The biography of Queen Victoria will be written in due time; and if there be defects, they will record them and posterity will not ignorant of them; but in the meantime we are warranted in saying that no grave contemporary charges can be advanced: and that is a circumstance of no mean significance. The affair of Lady Flora Hastings was a very unfortunate matter; but few will venture to ascribe personal blame to her Majesty. The “bed-chamber plot” may bring out, when Sir Robert Peel’s “Life” is published, some curious palace secrets; but as yet we know nothing of them, and may safely suspend our judgment till then. Mr. Birch’s resignation as tutor to the Prince of Wales may give rise to some Court gossip, although, had the incident occurred in any other family than the Royal Family, it would never have been heard of, or, being heard of, would have excited no attention. The explanation hinted at by a Puseyite organ, that the tutor to the heir-apparent may have been shocked by the countenance given by her Majesty to the Presbyterian form of worship while resident in Scotland, is one which, if correct, will not find much sympathy out of the diocese of Exeter.

We have no means of accurately knowing, but so far as rumour goes, we are not aware that the Queen has influenced appointments, or, at all events, leading ones, in Church or State. We have indeed heard that it is to royal connexion that the present Chancellor owes his custody of the Great Seal. It may be so, and we are not in a position to say yea or nay to the assertion. Queen Elizabeth was captivated by the dancing of Sir Christopher Hatton, and thereafter raised to the woolsack a personage with whom no one would think of comparing Lord Truro. It is possible, however, that his lordship may have to thank some other cause than the royal sunshine for his good fortune. There is to be a partition in the duties of the Chancellorship ; and when the new legal Chancellor makes his appearance, we may then see through more of the mystery; or possibly there may have been other claimants for the honour of such nicely-balanced qualifications so that the selection of a third candidate, less qualified than either, became a matter of imperative necessity; such things have happened before and will occur to the end of time. So that, on the whole, no case can be made out founded on any of those counts. We are not prying for matters of accusation nor searching for apologetic explanations when they are mooted; we are dealing with the public, state, and ascertained history of the Queen; and we maintain that the calm observer will find that it is not more exalted than it is pure, patriotic and unchallengeable.

Her Majesty gave up her privilege of free postage when Rowland Hill's system was introduced ; and it is right that her numerous correspondents should know that when their communications are not prepaid, the royal purse must pay double postage just as ordinary mortals must do. The yielding up of this immunity was a graceful acknowledgment of the importance of a great social improvement; and if her Majesty continue to pursue the course indicated by a step like this, and refuse her royal countenance to such items of expenditure as erection of stables for the Prince of Wales before his Royal Highness can possibly require such accommodation, the people will continue to bless her and hail her as the Sovereign who, of all others, has entered most profoundly into their feelings and sympathised with their hopes and struggles. The million is naturally disposed to reverence the throne; and if our present remarks tend to deepen mere conventionality, when the Queen's health is proposed, or the Queen's anthem is performed, our end shall be served. The people are rising every day, and the higher that they rise the higher does the Sovereign rise; for the chief jewel in the crown is, that it symbolises rule over a free as well as loyal community.

And that's it for this week and hope you have a great weekend.