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Italy.

The ministry of Signor Giolitti still remains in office. One notable change, however, has taken place. Ever since the formation of the kingdom a military officer has always had the charge of the War Department; on the resignation, however, in December last a civilian has been appointed. For the first time the military forces are brought into subordination. The present position of the army is said to be critical. Frontier defence has been neglected. Sufficient recruits to fill the cadres cannot be found. Discipline is poor, dissatisfaction and unrest exist as well among the officers as the men. Officers criticize their superiors in magazines and newspapers. Modernism, in fact, has invaded the Italian army.

Throughout the country too, and not merely in the army, widespread dissatisfaction is felt. The Socialists are gaining greater influence, reckless labor agitations are fomented, while the authority of the State is being defied by many revolutionary anarchical groups. The assassin of King Humbert has been publicly glorified in the streets of Rome. The government is apathetic or sides with the most violent and least reasonable party.

Portugal.

The awful crime which has been committed in Portugal has made that kingdom the chief centre of interest for the past few weeks. No words, of course, can express a sufficiently strong condemnation of the brutal deed, nor does it fall within the scope of these notes to describe it in detail. The events which take place in Fortugal are, as a rule, so much outside of the movements to which the attention of the world is given, that a complete account of their sequence is difficult. No special correspondents are considered necessary to record them for the benefit of the students of current events. So far as we can learn, politics have for a long time been in a very bad way; both parties were equally corrupt; all the politicians were self-seekers and known to be such. The public debt was increasing, the public finances in confusion, education neglected, and all the efforts which were made by the King and the few public-spirited men in the country were nullified and frustrated by an obstructive Cortes. The King, about nine months ago, was persuaded by Senhor Franco, a man who was

seriously anxious for real reform, to entrust him with a temporary dictatorship to set aside the parliament and to govern by decree. The country acquiesced quietly enough for the time being, in the hopes of good results, and many real reforms seem to have been effected. But as time went on Senhor Franco's methods became more drastic, and although a date had been fixed for the election of a new Parliament, newspapers were being more and more frequently suppressed, prominent politicians sent to prison, and a great number of malcontents arrested. Even municipal institutions were assailed, being taken over by commissions. On the very day of the murder judicial functions had, by decree, been given to the executive. In fact a feeling seems to have got abroad that the dictatorship was to be made permanent. This strengthened the hands of those who wished to establish a Republican form of government, and inflamed the passions of those who wished to destroy all government. And so persons willing to commit the atrocious crime were found.

The result has been the abolition of the dictatorship. A new sovereign has ascended the throne, called thereto by the constitution which he has sworn to observe and to cause to be observed. All parties have rallied round the youthful monarch; but an immediate change of ministers was demanded. Senhor Franco resigned and fled at once from the country. The new ministry, as an emergency measure, suspended all constitutional guarantees, and proclaimed martial law throughout the country. The next step which it took was a wiser one-it annulled all the decrees of the dictator by which the Press was controlled and those under which summary procedure was taken against political offences, and many of the political prisoners were at once released. The new King has declared in the clearest terms his purpose to remain ever faithful to the Constitution, and under no circumstances to have recourse to a dictatorship. A good lesson has been learned, but at an awful cost.

ARDINAL LOGUE presided at the Dublin meeting of the Catholic Truth Society, when the following paper on Voices of Irish History was read

by T. B. Cronin, a young literary light of great promise:

The human mind never soars to such sublimity as when wrapped in the spell of many voices calling from the spaces of the past. The deeds and thoughts of other days never die. They live on as memories, and we accept them as our heirlooms, and veil them in the gauze of fancy, and raise them up above our heads and hail them as aspirations. If a land had not a long and shining line of memories to light it at its work, it would toil on in the gloom forever unillumined by wisdom, unrevered by time, and frowned upon by destiny. And this rare old land of ours is a land of memories. Spirits of epochs that are dead are under our crumbling gables and hovering over our broken shrines. And these memories all have voices.

What message has our music for us? The old, old message of life and death-the life that filled the courtyard of Emania with snorting steeds; that welled up serene and beautiful in the cultured cloisters of Lismore; that shone in the harp and manuscript that glorified a hundred halls of Banba; and overflowed in the pining love that brought drown the sorrowed exile into the green graves of Gaul and of Spain. And the death which our music breathes of! Oh, in all the world there is no death like unto that of a once proud and powerful nation. Winding through every crevice of our civiliza tion, through music, song, and dance, through patriotism, virtue, and renown, through blood and tears and jubilation, is the passionate appeal of our ancient language for a lofty place in the thoughts of the men and women of to-day.

What say the voices that rise so fast and thick upon each other's tracks, out of the blood-strewn wastes and desert places of Erin's story? They speak of grand things that were and are to be. They say, too, that of all lands laying under the great, all-seeing eye of heaven, there is no land so bright, so inspiring, or so true as this. They say, too, that each of us must toil on with our eyes forever fixed on the realization of a nation's dreams. There is a legend which has come in the wake of these ever-crying voices from out the white soul of the ages, and it whispers that dark-haired Rosaleen shall reign again a queen when there is esteem of the olden language of the Gael.

There was never a more intense Irishman on American soil than the first Bishop of Charleston, though his name, John England, might give a contrary impression. He was born at Cork on September 23, 1786, and died at Charleston, on April 11, 1842. He has been called the light of the American hierarchy. His far-reaching intellect saw the imperfect organization of the American Church-its bishops far apart, and battling with poverty and countless other difficulties. He wrote to his brother prelates, urging upon them the necessity of assembling and taking counsel for united action. He lived to see this cherished desire of his heart accomplished, and his solid and brilliant mind shed its rays of light and wisdom on the first Councils of Baltimore.

There was no part of the Church in which his influence was not felt. He was constantly consulted by bishops, priests, and laymen from every part of the country. At Rome his influence in Church matters was very great. In compliance with the invitations of the bishops and priests of other States, this extraordinary man often went to herald the truths of the Church, or to appeal in behalf of the poor and afflicted in his own matchless style. In the summer of 1830 he lectured in Cincinnati Cathedral, and a writer of the time says that a new impulse was thus given to the inquiry for religious truth.

Bishop England was the reviver of classical learning in South Carolina. With the object of providing a clergy of his own for the diocese he opened at Charleston a classical school, in which aspirants to the ministry were made teachers while they pursued their theological studies. This school received numerous scholars from the best families in the city, and yielded a sufficient income to support the theological students while preparing for the priesthood. His great aim was to present the Catholic Church, her doctrines and practices, in all their truth and beauty and grandeur, before the Ameri can people. In his efforts to do this his labors, perhaps, have never been equalled by any other man. It was with this object he established the United States Catholic Miscellany, in 1822.

On his arrival in America he found the Church comparatively defenseless; but he soon rendered it a dangerous task to attack or villify the faith of his fathers. Many who ventured on this mode of warfare were glad to retreat from the field before the crushing weapons of logic, erudition, ard eloquence with which he battled for his Church, his creed, and his people. He was the real founder of Catholic journalism in the United States. He saw that the Catholic religion was regarded with contempt; and to him fell the splendid work of changing the current of public opinion and of giving the Church a status in the Republic. He perceived at a glance the value of the press, and set about employing it.

Among the Southern poets of the Civil War period two are entitled to enduring fame. One was the Rev. A. J. Ryan; the other was James R. Randall. The death of Mr. Randall, which occurred January 14, will cause deep sorrow. He was imbued fully with the spirit of the old South. He was in absolute accord with all its aspirations. He had been in touch with the men-soldiers and statesmen-who molded its destinies in the days that tried the souls of the strongest and most resolute. In the period following the civil strife Mr. Randall's pen was devoted to the advancement of the South. He was loyal to the last-ever ready, and even eager, to render service to the people among whom his lot was cast.

Mr. Randall was born in Baltimore, January 1, 1839. On his mother's side he was descended from Rene Leblanc, the gentle notary in Longfellow's Evangeline. He was educated at Georgetown University, traveled in South America, settled in New Orleans, and became a contributor to the Sunday Delta and professor of English literature at Poydras College.

The account given in the Delta of the invasion of Maryland by the Mas sachusetts troops as they passed through Baltimore, April 19, 1861, so excited Mr. Randall's feelings that he could not sleep. He was anxious to co something that might cause his native State to join the Confederacy, and at midnight left his bed, and by candle light wrote Maryland, My Marylard. The metre is similar to James Clarence Mangan's Karaman, O Karaman. He read it to his students next day and they praised it so highly that he sent it to the New Orleans Delta. It was widely copied throughout America and Europe. Oliver Wendell Holmes said: My only regret is that I could not do for Massachusetts what Randall did for Maryland.

A few days after the poem was written Miss Hetty Cary, of Baltimore, heard it declaimed by a friend and began singing it to the classic melcey of Lauriger Horatius. Words and music were thus united in Mr. Randa's native city, and from that time on it was sung in every Southern camp and in

thousands of Southern homes.

Mr. Randall wrote other poems and war ballads, among them The Lore Sentry, There's Life in the Old Land Yet, and The Battle-Cry of the South. He never collected his poems in book form. In 1866 he married Miss Kath erine Hammond, of Summer Hill, S. C. After the close of the Civil War Mr. Randall engaged in newspaper work, and for twenty years was editera writer on the Augusta Chronicle, and later Editor-in-Chief of the New Orlears Morning Star. He was an exemplary Catholic.

M. C. M.

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