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nature than any modern philosopher will fathom. The man who has nothing to learn from his wife is simply a stolid blockhead, who will never learn anything from anybody.

Concerning the marriage of completion, these things may be affirmed. The man, becoming a husband, becomes simultaneously a creator and a father; he creates a new soul in his wife; he exerts over her paternal authority and protection. Similarly the woman, on entering wifehood, is at once a mother and a teacher ; she begins immediately to nurse and foster and educate. The terms husband and wife contain within themselves all other expressions of relationship; including these, they include much more than these. It is impossible to do more than indicate this fertile theorem, which will yield infinite significance to those who study it carefully. I merely repeat that in the supreme relation between two human beings all other relations are involved. Hence the marriage of completion completes not only the characters and destinies of the two persons concerned, but likewise all their conceivable functions. Comedies and novels are laughed at for ending with marriage ; but the artist's unconscious instinct is true. To marry aright is to read the riddle of the world.

CHAPTER V.

POLITICS.

Beware of beans! Pythagoras.

The right thing to do, if only possible, is to avoid politics altogether. Matters political are more satisfactorily treated in England than anywhere else that I know of: yet can a gentleman look at the work of a contested election in an English borough, or enter the lobby of the House of Commons, without a feeling of immeasurable disgust ? And in the House itself what contemptible motives are patent! In the Times report of today I find it stated that Professor Fawcett told the Prime Minister of England that he retained a majority merely by holding over his supporters the threat that if defeated he

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would dissolve or resign. I fear the erudite professor was quite right. The Premier likes office-I refer to no particular Premier—and his supporters like the pleasantest club in London'—and an election is confoundedly expensive. Hence a government of fatuity may continue to exist in this country long after public opinion has utterly condemned it. The brains may be out, but the man won't die. It seems to me that for some time the brains have been out of our English political organisation : that we go on without much harm is due to the imperturbable common sense of ordinary Englishmen.

Mr. Disraeli, in one of his incomparably brilliant books, has stated his opinion that English politics are too parochial. I agree with him that they are parochial—but I think it eminently fortunate. England is a huge parish. In a parish we naturally select the dullest and vainest fellows for churchwardens and overseers: this is precisely what occurs in our parliamentary representation. Is there any constituency in England (even Greenwich not excepted) that does not contain a man far abler, far fitter to represent it, than its actual representative? Why should first-class men be compelled to political drudgery? Select six hundred and fifty persons from any civilised part of England on any principle ... because they all have red hair, or all have the same name, or are all teetotallers, or are all six feet high, or all suffer from rheumatism, or all like Bass's ale, or all know the Greek alphabet ... and I suspect they would compare favourably with any parliament since the days of Simon de Montfort. The truth is that the best Englishmen will not be troubled about politics. And I think them wise. With such rapidity does public opinion act in these days, that a minister who had committed a long series of small follies without any punishment save universal ridicule, would be pulled up very short if he committed a very great folly.

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