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436
A LADY'S VISIT TO THE HERZEGOVINIAN INSURGENTS.

which rarely kill. It may be perfectly true that our last cruise on the Baltic was "less sanguinary" than that which concluded in Copenhagen. But we shook hands with the Danes after fighting them, and the differences between us were ended: while our expensive contemplation of the defences of Cronstadt leaves us still in daily dread of an inspection by the Russian of those of Calcutta.

It is true that the ingenuity of our inventors is far from being exhausted, and that in a few years more, we may be able to destroy a regiment round a corner and bombard a fleet over the horizon; but I believe the effective result of these crowning scientific successes will only he to confirm the at present partial impression on the minds of military and naval officers, that their duty is rather to take care of their weapons than to use them. "England will expect" of her generals and admirals to maintain a dignified moral position as far as possible out of the enemy’s sight: and in a perfectly scientific era of seamanship we shall see two adverse fleets affected by a constant law of mutual repulsion at distances of two or three hundred miles; while, in either squadron, an occasional collision between the leading ships, or inexplicable foundering of the last improved ones, will make these prudential manœuvres on the whole as destructive of the force, and about ten times more costly to the pocket, of the nation than the ancient, and, perhaps, more honorable tactics of poorly armed pugnacity.

There is, however, one point touched upon in "P. S. C.'s" letter, to me the most interesting of all, with respect to which the data for accurate comparison of our former and present systems are especially desirable, though it never seems to have occurred to your correspondent to collect them — the estimates, namely, of the relative destruction of civil property.

Of wilful destruction, I most thankfully acknowledge the cessation in Christian warfare, and in the great change between the day of the sack of Magdeburg, and that of the march into Paris, recognize a true sign of the approach of the reign of national peace. But of inevitable destruction — of loss inflicted on the peasant by the merely imperative requirements and operations of contending armies — it will materially hasten the advent of such peace, if we ascertain the increasing pressure during our nominally mollified and merciful war. The agricultural losses sustained by France in one year are estimated by your correspondent at one hundred and seventy millions of pounds. Let him add to this sum the agricultural loss necessitated in the same year throughout Germany through the withdrawal of capital from productive industry, for the maintenance of her armies; and of labor from it by their composition and, for third item, add the total cost of weapons, horses, and ammunition on both sides; and let him then inform us whether the cost, thus summed, of a year's actual war between two European States, is supposed by military authorities to be fairly representative of that which the settlement of political dispute between any two such powers, with modern instruments of battle, will on an average, in future, involve. If so, I will only venture further to suggest that the nations minded thus to try their quarrel should at least raise the stakes for their match before they make the ring; instead of drawing bills for them upon futurity. For that the money-lenders whose pockets are filled, while everybody else's are emptied, by recent military finance, should occultly exercise irresistible influence, not only on the development of our — according to your contributor — daily more harmless armaments, but also on the deliberation of cabinets, and passions of the populace, is inevitable under present circumstances and the exercise of such influence, however advantageous to contractors and projectors, can scarcely be held consistent either with the honor of a senate or the safety of a State.

I am, Sir,
Your faithful servant,
J. Ruskin



P.S. — I wish I could get a broad approximate estimate of the expenditure in money, and loss of men by France and Prussia in the respective years of Jena and Sedan, and by France and Austria in the respective years of Arcole and Solferino.




From The Cornhill Magazine.

A LADY'S VISIT TO THE HERZEGOVINIAN INSURGENTS.

RAGUSA.

It is difficult to imagine, when walking down the Corso of Ragusa, that one is on the Dalmatian coast, and in an Austrian town. The old loggia, the market-place,