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is yet far from ripe ; even the materials that now lie within reach are rough and unfit, without much more revision and rearrangement, to be worked up satisfactorily.
But let the English Church appreciate her position in this matter—a position such as no Church ever held before for undertaking this work ; let her lay the whole world under tribute ; let her rejoice in being able to take as she will of the soft utterances of Asia, and the deep teaching of the Greek odes, the terse diction and subdued fire of the Latins, and the bold energy of the Germans, and to weld them together with the fervent raptures of those at home who have wandered from her fold, and the chastened devotion of her more dutiful children. It is a great work; it is a great opportunity; we cannot but long for its accomplishment; yet we dread a failure. There is just so much already at hand as to tempt us into action; there is just that amount of half-preparedness to make us act in haste, and repent at leisure. There is a proverb—and we would write it over this subject— Wait a little, and make an end the sooner.' It is unbecoming the dignity and high character of our Church to be ever making and unmaking her formulas; let her bishops and doctors then begin, if they will, at once, but with the determination to spare neither labour nor time, even if years pass away before they can with confidence lay before us a Hymnarium' worthy of our history and our language; thoroughly consonant with the tone and teaching of our Prayer-book ; and such that the Church of our time may set to it her seal, and hand it down to posterity, a ktíua eis åèì to future generations, and a lasting monument of the present.
ART. III.—1. Papers relating to Administrative and Financial
Reforms in Turkey. 1858-61. 2. The Turkish Empire in its Relations with Christianity. By
R. R. Madden. 2 Vols. London, 1862.
wonder well stirred within us. Life, in a physical point of view, is excitement. Emotions of wonder, by exciting our curiosity, quicken the consciousness of existence, and nothing is more productive of wonder than ignorance and mystery. Was ever country, for instance, more talked of, and written about, than Turkey? Yet in some respects, and those not the least important, Japan and New Zealand are better known to us than the Sultan's Empire.
Geographically, we have a fair notion of its outline by sea and by land. Historically, we are not without the means of learning by what succession of events, and by what inspiration, the Turks acquired so immense an extent of dominion. Commercially, we are acquainted with the principal products of Turkey and with those foreign articles which enter most into the consumption of its inhabitants. We possess even a general idea of the religious tenets and national usages which give more or less a peculiar form and colour to that complicated texture of races, creeds, languages, and costumes, which is pictured on our mind's eye as often as we think of the Levant. But when some passing occurrence, some political movement, forces our attention into a closer examination of the actual state of Turkey-of the relations, for instance, in which the Sultan and his people, the several classes of society, the Government and foreign Powers stand, respectively, towards each other—we find it no easy matter to obtain a clear insight into these various departments of so extensive and complicated a subject. Have we occasion to appreciate with correctness the causes of weakness, disturbance, and decay, which operate so powerfully on the Ottoman Empire, or the character and extent of those undeveloped resources on which the advocates of Turkish regeneration rest their hopes, we are sadly at a loss for information sufficient to enlighten our minds and enable us to fix our opinion on solid and practical grounds.
Our marked deficiency in these respects can hardly fail to expose us to serious errors.
We are liable in consequence to form a mistaken estimate of the great interests which may at any moment be irretrievably compromised by our ignorance; and we are led to neglect the timely adoption of measures which might avert, or at least indefinitely postpone, a dangerous and threatening contingency.
As a proof of the extreme need of better information and more patient thought upon this subject, we are tempted to adduce the following passages (which we quote with the brevity prescribed by our limits), as giving a fair specimen of the temper in which this subject has been treated by Mr. Madden, not a stray occasional writer upon Turkey, but one who professes to appreciate the importance of the questions connected with the Turkish Empire, and has dedicated to them a fresh offering of two highly fatted and garlanded volumes, in addition to sundry minor antecedent publications :
'It is indeed a terrible calamity for mankind that the most powerful nation of the world, the one that could exercise by far the greatest amount of influence in favour of the interests of humanity in every
quarter * The Turkish Empire, &c., vol. ii. pp. 17 et seqq.
quarter of the globe, should be disposed to adopt a policy, in its relations with Turkey, that its rulers dare not attempt to justify to themselves or to the world.
• The cause of Turkey is, however, espoused, the character of its. institutions vindicated, the tolerant spirit of its government extolled, the injured innocence of its religion in all its relations with the condition of rayahs strenuously contended for by Ministers of State -alas! for Christianity, even by ministers of religion, asserted in Parliament and in the Press, on the plea that British interests, which are those of civilization, are presumed to be indissolubly connected with those of the Turkish Empire. That maxim of haute politique was first propounded in the British Parliament by Mr. Pitt at the time of an apprehended rupture with the Empress Catherine; reduced to an official formula, in which all State wisdom devoted to our policy in the East is concentrated, it has been adopted ever since Mr. Pitt's administration by each successive government, to the great injury of the true interests of England and civilization.
'It is high time, I say, for the people of England to determine that they will no longer suffer their understanding to be imposed on and insulted by the miserable sophistry and unmeaning jargon of the policy which this formula professes to express; to resolve they will not approve, and can no longer acquiesce in, statements made even by the ablest veteran statesmen of our times—that it is necessary for Great Britain, for the sake of the interests of civilization, to defend and maintain-and in that just and necessary defence and maintenance to fight for-the Turkish Empire.'
Now we are not disposed to quarrel with Mr. Madden for having brought into strong relief the antichristian tendencies of Islamism, the personal vices of its founder, and the corrupt oppression which it has practically engendered wherever it has become the law of the land. But still less are we inclined to delve with him into the accumulated rubbish, the testacean hill, of antiquated prejudices and barbarous atrocities, which, even when they raged, were by no means confined in practice to the followers of Mahomet, and which the progress of civilization, and sounder notions of international interest, have at least thrown into abeyance. We cannot close our understandings against the natural innovations of time. The Turkish Empire has freely and formally taken its place among the civilized nations of Europe. Can we then in reason deny it those means of improvement to which even the remote regions of China and India are becoming from year to year more evidently accessible? If it be true, as we believe, that Christianity is the religion of civilization, are not its doctrines more likely to obtain a footing amongst the Mahometans when friendly intercourse
with them is conducted on principles of mutual advantage ? Exposed as those of Turkey are to dangers and frequent collisions both within and from without,-insulated, moreover, by their creed when taken as the guide of their policy,—whither is a blind obedience to their traditional maxims calculated to lead them? When they shall have reached that stage of weakness and confusion which would infallibly tempt the ambition of powerful neighbours, where should we find a shelter for our commercial or political interests in that quarter, or how should we avert the war which duty, policy, and humanity would then concur to force upon us ?
We should not deal fairly by the public if we pretended to supply the amount of knowledge required to enable them to comprehend in all its details the condition of the Turkish Empire. We can only hope to bring more prominently and distinctly into view such circumstances in the state of Turkey as are essential to a clear apprehension of the subject, and to place in their proper light those leading considerations which are best calculated to settle our judgment as to the affairs of that country.
We are stimulated by recent events to undertake this task, particularly by the death of Sultan Abdul Mehjid, and his brother's accession to the Ottoman throne. These unexpected changes have more than ever attracted public attention towards the seat of power in Turkey, and it is by no means improbable that a crisis of vital importance to ourselves, and to all Europe, may eventually arise out of their consequences.
The Turks are separated from us by so many barriers that, when we are summoned to give them a thought, our first impression is one of surprise that we should have any interests in common with them, or that we should entertain any wish either to press our advice upon them, or to step forward, at our own cost and peril, in their defence. Why, it may naturally be asked, even by those who can think more calmly than Mr. Madden, should a Christian state concern itself about the welfare of a people whose rule of action is the Koran? Why should those who live under a free constitution desire the maintenance of an empire governed on despotic principles? Why should a nation whose Saxon literature embraces the whole circle of knowledge, ally itself with a horde of Tartars—for such the Turks originally were-whose written idiom is almost exclusively confined to tracts and commentaries steeped in bigotry and alien from our conceptions of truth?
Yet, obvious and rational as these impressions may in appearance be, we cannot with prudence or safety adopt them as the ground of our national policy in the Levant. Long before we had acquired any territorial footing in the Mediterranean, that spirit of trade and navigation, which belongs so emphatically to the British Isles, impelled us into commercial intercourse with the shores of Turkey. Those who embarked in the trade with that country required protection for their persons and properties against the violence of a despotic government, the cupidity of local authorities, and the prejudices of a fanatical population. We are indebted to one and the same great Princess for the Levant and East India Companies, which in their day, though now consigned to the common resting-place of human inventions, rendered good service to the State on no common scale of magnitude. It was in connection with the former of those companies, and in support of its establishments, that our first ostensible engagements with the Porte were contracted under the name of Capitulations. These and some additional treaties, which are still in vigour, constitute the legal securities of our countrymen for the enjoyment of justice and friendly treatment wherever the Sultan's power is practically maintained.
The charter of the Levant Company, though it originated in the year 1581, dates in its improved shape from the reigns of James I. and Charles II. The Capitulations, as now existing, date from the year 1675, but refer in several of their preliminary clauses to earlier periods, beginning with the reign of Elizabeth. The trade, which, thus protected, took root and gradually spread through the Levant, has, we all know, of late years taken much larger proportions. It now comprises the transit trade with Persia, and altogether stands at a high figure in our table of imports and exports, as annually presented to the two Houses of Parliament. It also includes our traffic in grain and other important articles of produce with the Danubian provinces and the neighbouring districts of Russia. The shipping employed in conveying such articles of export from those quarters, as well as the corresponding articles of exchange manufactured in Great Britain, must of necessity thread its way through the narrow, well-fortified channels of the Bosphorus and Dardanelles. No inconsiderable portion of our trade with Hungary, and in general with the States of Austria, inclines to follow the same direction, and that tendency can hardly fail to be increased by the new and shorter lines of communication which, as in the recent instance of Kustandjee, promise to facilitate our means of commercial intercourse on that side, whether by rail or by canal.
MacCulloch in his valuable work, the Dictionary of Commercial Navigation,' remarks that the trade between England and Turkey is of much greater value and importance than is