Imatges de pÓgina
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growing age, was pretty nearly slow murder in the long run. They did not let girls go to school with any persistency after they were twelve or fourteen. After they were twenty, they might study what they chose.

"But the main difference between our schools and yours," said he, "is that your teacher is only expected to hear the lesson recited. Our teacher is expected to teach it also. You have in America, therefore, sixty scholars to one teacher. We do not pretend to have more than twenty to one teacher. We do this the easier because we let no child go to school more than half the time; nor, even with the strongest, more than four hours a day.

"Why," said he, "I was at a college in America once, where, with splendid mathematicians, they had had but one man teach any mathematics for thirty years. And he was travelling in Europe when I was there. The others

"What do you do in your off-terms?" only heard recitations of those who said I,-"go fishing?" could learn without being taught." "I was once there," said I.

"No, of course not," said he, "except Strep, and Hipp, and Chal, and those boys, because their fathers are fishermen. No, we have to be in our fathers' offices, we big boys; the little fellows, they let them stay at home. If I was here without you now, that truant officer we passed just now would have had me at home before this time. Well, you see they think we learn about business, and I guess we do. I know I do," said he, "and sometimes I think I should like to be a Proxenus when I am grown up, but I do not know."

I asked George about this, the same evening. He said the boy was pretty nearly right about it. They had come round to the determination that the employment of children, merely because their wages were lower than men's, was very dangerous economy. The chances were that the children were overworked, and that their constitution was fatally impaired. "We do not want any Manchester-trained children here." Then they had found that steady brain-work on girls, at the

THE boat's repairs still lingered, and on Sunday little Phil. came round with a note from his mother, to ask if I would go to church with them. If I had rather go to the cathedral or elsewhere, Phil. would show me the way. I preferred to go with him and her together. It was a pretty little church, - quite open and airy it would seem to us, excellent chance to see dancing vines, or flying birds, or falling rains, or other "meteors outside," if the preacher proved dull or the hymns undevout. But I found my attention was well held within. Not that the preaching was anything to be repeated. sermon was short, unpretending, but alive and devout. It was a sonnet, all on one theme; that theme pressed, and pressed, and pressed again, and, of a sudden, the preacher was done. "You say you know God loves you," he said. "I hope you do, but I am going to tell you once more that he loves you, and once more and once

more."

The

What pleased me in it all

was a certain unity of service, from the beginning to the end. The congregation's singing seemed to suggest the prayer; the prayer seemed to continue in the symphony of the organ; and, while I was in revery, the organ ceased; but as it was ordered, the sermon took up the theme of my revery, and so that one theme ran through the whole. The service was not ten things, like the ten parts of a concert, it was one act of communion or worship. Part of this was due, I guess, to this, that we were in a small church, sitting or kneeling near each other, close enough to get the feeling of communion, not parted, indeed, in any way. We had been talking together, as we stood in the churchyard before the service began, and when we assembled in the church the sense of sympathy continued. I told Kleone that I liked the home feeling of the church, and she was pleased. She said she was afraid I should have preferred the cathedral. There were four large cathedrals, open, as the churches were, to all the town; and all the clergy, of whatever order, took turns in conducting the service in them. There were seven successive services in each of them that Sunday. But each clergyman had his own special charge beside, - I should think of not more than a hundred families. And these families, generally neighbors in the town, indeed, seemed, naturally enough, to grow into very familiar personal relations with each other.

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he will be removed at once. ernment will appoint a temporary substitute, and order an election of his successor."

"Do you mean there is no fixed election-day?”

"None at all," said Philip. "We are always voting. When we stopped just now I went in to vote for an alderman of our ward, in place of a man who has resigned. I wish I had taken you in with me, though there was nothing to see. Only three or four great books, each headed with the name of a candidate. I wrote my name in Andrew Second's book. He is, on the whole, the best man. The books will be open three months. No one, of course, can vote more than once, and at the end of that time there will be a count, and a proclamation will be made. Then about removal; any one who is dissatisfied with a public officer puts his name up at the head of a book in the election office. Of course there are dozens of books all the time. But unless there is real incapacity, nobody cares. Sometimes, when one man wants another's place, he gets up a great breeze, the newspapers get hold of it, and everybody is canvassed who can be got to the spot. But it is very hard to turn out a competent officer. If in three months, however, at all the registries, a majority of the voters express a wish for a man's removal, he has to go out. Practically, I look in once a week at that office to see what is going on. It is something as you vote at your clubs."

"Did you say women as well as men?" said I.

"O, yes," said Philip, "unless a woman or a man has formally withdrawn from the roll. You see, the roll is the list, not only of voters, but of soldiers. For a man to withdraw, is to say he is a coward and dares not take his chance in war. Sometimes a woman does not like military service, and if she takes her name off I do not think the public feeling about it is quite the same as with a man. She may have things to do at home."

"But do you mean that most of the women serve in the army?" said I.

"Of course they do," said he. "They wanted to vote, so we put them on the roll. You do not see them much. Most of the women's regiments are heavy artillery, in the forts, which can be worked just as well by persons of less as of more muscle if you have enough of them. Each regiment in our service is on duty a month, and in reserve six. You know we have no distant posts."

"We have a great many near-sighted men in America," said I, "who cannot serve in the army."

"We make our near-sighted men work heavy guns, serve in light artillery, or, in very bad cases, we detail them to the police work of the camps," said he. The deaf and dumb men we detail to serve the military telegraphs. They keep secrets well. The blind men serve in the bands. And the men without legs ride in barouches in state processions. Everybody serves somewhere."

"That is the reason," said I, with a sigh, "why everybody has so much time in Sybaris!"

BUT the reader has more than enough of this. Else I would print my journal of " A Week in Sybaris." By Thursday the boat was mended. I hunted up the old fisherman and his boys. He was willing to go where my Excellency bade, but he said his boys wanted to stay. They would like to live here. "Among the devils?" said I.

The old man confessed that the place for poor men was the best place he ever saw; the markets were cheap, the work was light, the inns were neat, the people were civil, the music was good, the churches were free, and the priests did not lie. He believed the reason that nobody ever came back from Sybaris was, that nobody wanted to.

The Proxenus nodded, well pleased.

"So Battista and his brother would like to stay a few months; and he found he might bring Caterina too, when my Excellency had returned from Gallipoli; or did my Excellency think that, when Garibaldi had driven out the Bourbons, all the world would be like Sybaris?"

My Excellency hoped so; but did not dare promise.

"You see now," said George, "why you hear so little of Sybaris. Enough people come to us. But you are the only man I ever saw leave Sybaris who did not mean to return."

"And I," said I,-"do you think I am never coming here again?"

"You found it a hard harbor to make," said the Proxenus. "We have published no sailing directions since St. Paul touched here, and those which he wrote- he sent them to the Corinthians yonder neither they nor any one else have seemed to understand."

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"God bless you! Good by." And I sailed for Gallipoli.

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THE PIANO IN THE UNITED STATES.

TWEN

WENTY-FIVE thousand pianos were made in the United States last year!

This is the estimate of the persons who know most of this branch of manufacture, but it is only an approximation to the truth; for, besides the sixty makers in New York, the thirty in Boston, the twenty in Philadelphia, the fifteen in Baltimore, the ten in Albany, and the less number in Cincinnati, Buffalo, Chicago, St. Louis, and San Francisco, there are small makers in many country towns, and even in villages, who buy the parts of a piano in the nearest city, put them together, and sell the instrument in the neighborhood. The returns of the houses which supply the ivory keys of the piano to all the makers in the country are confirmatory of this estimate; which, we may add, is that of Messrs. Steinway of New York, who have made it a point to collect both the literature and the statistics of the instrument, of which they are among the largest manufacturers in the world.

The makers' prices of pianos now range from two hundred and ninety dollars to one thousand; and the prices to the public, from four hundred and fifty dollars to fifteen hundred. We may conclude, therefore, that the people of the United States during the year 1866 expended fifteen millions of dollars in the purchase of new pianos. It is not true that we export many pianos to foreign countries, as the public are led to suppose from the advertisements of imaginative manufacturers. American citizens—all but the few consummately able kings of business allow a free play to their imagination in advertising the products of their skill. Canada buys a small number of our pianos; Cuba, a few; Mexico, a few; South America, a few; and now and then one is sent to Europe, or taken thither by a Thalberg or a Gottschalk; but an inflated currency and a war tariff make it impossible for Americans

to compete with European makers in anything but excellence. In price, they cannot compete. Every disinterested and competent judge with whom we have conversed on this subject gives it as his deliberate opinion that the best American piano is the best of all pianos, and the one longest capable of resisting the effects of a trying climate; yet we cannot sell them, at present, in any considerable numbers, in any market but our own. Protectionists are requested to note this fact, which is not an isolated fact. America possesses such an astonishing genius for inventing and combining labor-saving machinery, that we could now supply the world with many of its choicest products, in the teeth of native competition, but for the tariff, the taxes, and the inflation, which double the cost of producing. The time may come, however, when we shall sell pianos at Paris, and watches in London, as we already do sewing-machines everywhere.

Twenty-five thousand pianos a year, at a cost of fifteen millions of dollars! Presented in this manner, the figures produce an effect upon the mind, and we wonder that an imperfectly reconstructed country could absorb in a single year, and that year an unprosperous one, so large a number of costly musical instruments. But, upon performing a sum in long division, we discover that these startling figures merely mean, that every working-day in this country one hundred and twelve persons buy a new piano. When we consider, that every hotel, steamboat, and public school above a certain very moderate grade, must have from one to four pianos, and that young ladies' seminaries jingle with them from basement to garret, (one school in New York has thirty Chickerings,) and that almost every couple that sets up housekeeping on a respectable scale considers a piano only less indispensable than a kitchen range, we are rather inclined to

The trade in new pianos, however, is nothing to the countless transactions in old. Here figures are impossible; but probably ten second-hand pianos are sold to one new one. The business of letting pianos is also one of great extent. It is computed by the wellinformed, that the number of these instruments now "out," in the city of New York, is three thousand. There is one firm in Boston that usually has a thousand let. As the rent of a piano ranges from six dollars to twelve dollars a month, cartage both ways paid by the hirer, it may be inferred that this business, when conducted on a large scale, and with the requisite vigilance, is not unprofitable. In fact, the income of a piano-letting business has approached eighty thousand dollars per annum, of which one third was profit. It has, however, its risks and drawbacks. From June to September, the owner of the instruments must find storage for the greater part of his stock, and must do without most of his monthly returns. Many of those who hire pianos, too, are persons "hanging on the verge " of society, who have little respect for the property of others, and vanish to parts unknown, leaving a damaged piano behind them.

wonder at the smallness than at the ing American instrument. The best largeness of the number. London square piano, in plain case, is sixty guineas, almost exactly half the American price. Two thirds of all the pianos made in England are low-priced uprights,- averaging thirty-five guineas, which would not stand in our climate for a year. England, therefore, supplies herself and the British empire with pianos at an annual expenditure of about eight millions of our present dollars. American makers, we may add, have recently taken a hint from their English brethren with regard to the upright instrument. Space is getting to be the dearest of all luxuries in our cities, and it has become highly desirable to have pianos that occupy less of it than the square instrument which we usually see. Successful attempts have been recently made to apply the new methods of construction to the upright piano, with a view to make it as durable as those of the usual forms. Such a brisk demand has sprung up for the improved uprights, that the leading makers are producing them in considerable numbers, and the Messrs. Steinway are erecting a new building for the sole purpose of manufacturing them. The American uprights, however, cannot be cheap. Such is the nature of the American climate, that a piano, to be tolerable, must be excellent; and while parts of the upright cost more than the corresponding parts of the square, no part of it costs less. Six hundred dollars is the price of the upright in plain rosewood case,

England alone surpasses the United States in the number of pianos annually manufactured. In 1852, the one hundred and eighty English makers produced twenty-three thousand pianos, --fifteen hundred grands, fifteen hundred squares, and twenty thousand uprights. As England has enjoyed fifteen years of prosperity since, it is probable that the annual number now exceeds that of the United States. The English people, however, pay much less money for the thirty thousand pianos which they probably buy every year, than we do for our twenty-five thousand. In London, the retail price of the best Broadwood grand, in plain mahogany case, is one hundred and thirtyfive guineas; which is a little more than half the price of the correspond

fifty dollars more than a plain rosewood square.

Paris pianos are renowned, the world over, and consequently three tenths of all the pianos made in Paris are exported to foreign countries. France, too, owing to the cheapness of labor, can make a better cheap piano than any other country. In 1852, there were ten thousand pianos made in Paris, at an average cost of one thousand francs each; and, we are informed, a very good new upright piano can now be bought in France for one hundred dollars. But in France the average

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