Saturday, November 06, 2010

02Mar1874, The Tichborne Verdict

HOLKER, Monday, March 2nd, 1874.
—The magnificent summing-up of Lord Chief Justice Cockburn ended on Saturday, and the jury in half an hour's time brought in a verdict of Guilty on both counts ; and miserable Arthur Orton stands at last stripped of all his shams and masks, in native baseness. He is sentenced to penal servitude for 14 years. His counsel Kenealy is gibbeted by judges and jury for abominable slanders and false accusations: and people say he must be disbarred. It is some comfort to perceive that the very mob have lost faith in their hero and he was taken off to Newgate without disturbance.

20Feb1874, A Great Five Years

LONDON, Friday, February 20th, 1874.
Uncle W. picking up his spirits already; but he is deeply indignant with the party—says there is no one point on which they would act together, and calls his 2nd fiddle election his "disgrace." Declaimed about it all a good deal; but after all Mr. Leveson was right t'other day when he said no Government ever went out with cleaner hands and a more glorious past. It has been a "great five years."

17Feb1874, Disembodied Spirits

LONDON, February 17th, Shrove Tuesday, 1874. —
To London. Saw the Gladstones before dinner. He had just come from the Queen, and was looking upset and sad; he had no expectation of anything like such a crash, and, with all his longing for rest, the mighty defeat cannot but be heavy to bear. She, poor dear, is very wretched about it.

We went to their tail after dinner—saw Argylls, Ld. Granville, Ld. Wolverton, Charles, and many "disembodied spirits," as Uncle W. calls the unseated members.

12Feb1874, We Came Out Triumphant

BRADFORD, Thursday, February 12th, 1874.
—We came out triumphant, 3 cheers! F. at the head, Mr. Wilson only 23 behind him — majority over 800. In brighter days it would have been 2,000; but this ain't amiss. It is a great delight and gratification. I "put in" the time of suspense pretty well, skating with the Law girls in Peel Park.... Our news came at 4.30.... I much feared I should kiss Mr. Law, dear man, or Mr. Wilson, or both; but it was happily averted.

11Feb1874, Pollingday

BRADFORD, Wednesday, February 11th, 1874.
—Pollingday. We should be delightfully confident, if it were not for the general rout of the Liberal party which is taking place all over the country, the causes of which are not every easy to determine. Probably many causes combine. Uncle W.'se government has been economical, with the grand result of national unbounded prosperity; but various "interests" have suffered in their pockets, and are furious against him; the Licensed Victuallers and publicans are all up in arms; and there is a universal sense of weariness and wish for letting things alone. And I believe the Secularists, and their tools the Irreconcileable Dissenters, have thoroughly frightened the country, which has plenty of strong attachment to the Church Establishment and Religious Education; and this must have a deal to do with the reaction. The Liberation and Birmingham League return very few representatives, and the party is paying the price of its wretched disorder and splits, and suffering for its innumerable hobby-riders and crotchet-mongers, who, like dogs on a racecourse, prance wildly about the field and get under the feet of the great champions of the great cause—breaking their own stupid backs in the process, and spoiling the race. Frank, Cavendish, Willy, Mr. Leveson are in, but Uncle W. himself is but a miserable 2nd at Greenwich and Eddy is beaten with Sir J. Shuttleworth in N.E. Lancashire. He turned up to dinner here last night.

06Feb1874, The Tichborne Trial

BRADFORD, Friday, February 6th, 1874.
—All this while the Lord Chief Justice Cockburn has been summing up in the Tichborne trial. The Spectator truly says that he must have felt as a 1st-rate singer would do, when, on striking up, all the children in the house began to squall! His speech beginning with the General Election. The Claimant is being clearly tho' gradually unravelled, and an unspeakably mean monster of fraud, lying, perjury, and all uncleanness he must be.

02Feb1874, Like Tragedy and Comedy

ESHTON, Monday, February 2nd, 1874.
—The meeting was in the Keighley Mechanics' Institute, at 8. The fine big hall was crammed in every corner. F. spoke with rather less effect than at Halifax, confining himself almost entirely to finance, but the people listened famously well, and I enjoyed the sight of their keen, shrewd faces. At first there were symptoms of opposition, from Tory, extreme Radical, and Republican (! ! !) sections, but all this seemed to dwindle away. My proudest time was during the questions, in which my old Fred does certainly excel. He is thoroughly up upon all the subjects and one could see growing respect and confidence in the faces below. Jolly old Mr. Wilson followed suit with unbounded good-will and pluck, but not quite with all the knowledge of the various matters one could wish; occasionally taking wild Radical flights, occasionally coming out rather old Tory than otherwise; but always with straightforwardness and bonhomie. What with F.'s profound earnestness and his humorous hitting, they are a good deal like Tragedy and Comedy. The meeting ended with splendid enthusiasm, and was all but unanimous, barely 6 hands being held up against us.

28Jan1874, The Irreconcileables and Sir Salt

BRADFORD, Wednesday, January 28th, 1874.
F. came home late, and a good deal harassed. He has no wish to attempt to conciliate the Irreconcileables; but the best class of dissenters who are supporting him and earnest against splitting up the party, have sat upon him to make some concession, and he has written to Sir Titus Salt (a typical man of the sort) to re-state his determination against excluding religion from Board Schools, and his opinion that taking away the liberty of parents in the choice of schools will greatly hinder compulsion, but promising eventually, rather than ruin the whole cause by Liberal strife, to vote for the repeal of the clause, should the bitter feeling continue. I can hardly think him right; but I daresay I am no judge of the duty of concession in the matter.

27Jan1874, Mr. Forster's Election

BRADFORD, Tuesday, January 27th, 1874.
—We came to Bradford, F. having left London at 6, I at 12. Good staunch friends (albeit Independent), the Laws, put us up. The town is wild over Mr. Forster's election, and we shan't be much thought of till that's over. The miserable 25th clause of the Education Act is made the battle-ground by the frantic section of the Dissenters, as I prophesied, but I should fancy nowhere so vehemently, or with so little common sense, as here. Here, where the rates paid on behalf of children whose parents could not afford to pay fees have amounted in the whole year to the interesting sum of 30s.!! the Irreconcileables mean to oust Mr. Forster after his years of stout Liberal service; and they may very probably do it, by splitting the party.

24Jan1874, The Duke of Edinburgh Marries

LONDON, Saturday, January 24th, 1874.
—By some mysterious process the Tory newspapers have the news, Uncle W.'s address and all! tho' it was only sent late last evening to the Times. The address is more a manifesto and mighty long, but excellent and forcible, with the grand plum of abolition of the Income Tax, on the strength of a great surplus of £5,000,000 and promised reduction of indirect taxation. General stir and bewilderment. F. is certain to have a sharp contest for the first time since he became an M.P., 8½ years ago; he plunged into his address....
Yesterday the Duke of Edinburgh married the Grand Duchess Marie Alexandrovna of Russia with all the gorgeous Eastern ceremonial, and the English Service besides; the Duke, by the account in the paper, received the Sacrament (at least the Cup) which I can hardly believe (No; it was not the Eucharist Cup, but a simple ceremony), as I know Mrs. Helbert was refused when in one of her phases she wished to communicate in the Greek Church, at St. Petersburg. The Dean of Westminster celebrated the English rite, and must have been in his glory. A magnificent Russian choir sang at both services.

Friday, November 05, 2010

23Jan1874, Parliament to be Dissolved!

LONDON, Friday, January 23rd, 1874.
—An extraordinary thunderclap exploded this evening, after a long Cabinet Council: Parliament is to be dissolved at once! Various important elections during the recess have been going against Government, and the state of things ever since Dizzy refused to take office after the Irish University defeat has been very creaky and unsatisfactory ; Government greatly weakened. So what should Uncle William hatch as he coddled his cold but this spirited move! In bed he wrote a fine eloquent address to the Greenwich electors, which is to burst upon the astonished world to-morrow. F. told me on Wednesday that we were on the brink of a volcano, but not till just before dinner to-night did he tell me what was up. It was a complete dead secret and will take Liberals as much by surprise as Tories.

31Oct1873, Lay of the Last Minstrel

HOLKER, Friday, October 31st, 1873.
William and Fritz actually love the "Lay of the Last Minstrel"!!! The illustrations first attracting them: they make me read bits of it, and can spout "Yes! I am come of high degree," "Nine and twenty knights of fame," etc. Cavsh. went late.

30Oct1873, Wild Wind and Rain

HOLKER, Thursday, October 30th, 1873.
—Except school (where we 3 are taking the religious teaching of the 1st class), no outing: wild wind and rain.

16Oct1873, Teaching the Dear Boykins

HOLKER, Thursday, October 16th, 1873.
—Had a fine galloping ride on Republic, with F., on the sands. Grey mild day. Uncle Dick came. I do Bible and hymns, and reading, and am beginning a little adding and counting, with the dear three eldest boykins before breakfast. Only Victor reads.

15Oct1873, Visiting in Raike

HOLKER, Wednesday, October 15th, 1873.
Emma and the girls and I went to Raike to see Mesd. Abbotson and Kelly; Mr. Jodrell came.

14Oct1873, A Bit of Spitting by Dizzy

HOLKER, Tuesday, October 14th, 1873.
—Very lovely with glorious views; walked with Emma up Byland Scarr, and to see Mesdames Telfer and Mackreth. The Howards came late; it is 4 years since they were here and must be very sad to poor At. Fanny. Another Govt. victory at Taunton; this little turn of the tide is perhaps to be attributed to an extraordinary bit of spitting on the part of Dizzy, who has written a letter (for publication) to Ld. Grey de Wilton savagely calling the Govt. names, and dubbing their whole career "plundering and blundering." This must disgust lukewarm Liberals.

10Oct1873, Catholics of Prussia

HOLKER, Friday, October 10th, 1873.
—The old Catholics of Prussia have now a Bishop duly consecrated and a constitution; also they have just been recognised by the State—a notable event which seems to give them a position such as the English Church acquired after the Reformation, only they have cleaner hands and, I suppose, if possible, a more urgent cause ; inasmuch as Papal aggression and the worst abuses of religion are less intolerable than Papal infallibility, and new falsehoods imposed as articles of Faith. God preserve them in His Truth, steadfast to the end!

Alas, Mrs. Helbert has gone over to Rome, dreaming, in the face of all these things, of unity and purity and peace there!

09Oct1873, Lauching the Duke of Buccleuch

HOLKER, Thursday, October 9th, 1873.
—Went with F. to Barrow for the launch of the Duke of Buccleuch, one of the new E. Indian "Ducal Line." I named her and made a splendid smash of the champagne bottle, to the joy of all beholders. Having never seen a launch before, I was delighted and rather throat-lumpy at the fine rush and plunge into the sea of the poor brave ship, little knowing what may be before her !

06Oct1873, Mrs. Polly's Horrible Ordeal

LONDON, Monday, October 6th, 1873.
—Eastward! Less work than in the summer. Cd not talk to my poor Mrs. Polly, as she was brought in all wretched and senseless with chloroform from one of her innumerable hideous operations and aftds fell asleep. She is a dear, tidy, nice-minded woman, wife of a respectable country gardener. It is a horrible ordeal for her.