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concession we can safely offer in return for Germany's co-operation towards the restoration of silver. By the Latin Union our support would be construed as seconding the efforts of those Powers who will only act eagerly and promptly when confident in the strength of our moral adhesion to their views. A trifling modification in our currency laws would ensure the necessary alteration being carried out without any friction. On behalf of the Indian Government, a pledge might easily be tendered assuring the unrestricted coinage of silver by every Indian mint, concurrent with the strict fulfilment of the provisions of an International Convention which has already been referred to in an earlier part of this paper. It may not be amiss to observe that the pledge would only be--having regard to India's silver mono-metallism-a sort of nominal concession, but it is the moral worth of the promise that would give it a bonâ-fide force.

But there seems no valid objection to Parliament granting an inquiry with a view to the appointment of an International Convention, to find suitable meaus for the restoration to silver of its former stability. Most of the chambers of commerce are practically agreed as to the necessity of Government inquiring thoroughly into the question.

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In former times autocratic governments did not scruple to tamper with the currency of a nation. We have Professor Jevons' authority for apprehending that the danger lies quite in the opposite direction: that popular governments will not venture upon the most obvious and necessary improvement of the monetary system without obtaining a concurrence of popular opinion in its favour; while the people, influenced by habit, and with little knowledge of the subject, will never be able to agree upon the best scheme.'

It will not appear that the views held by our Bi-metallists generally are either ambitious in scope or pretentious in character, and, bearing in mind the absence of any desire to tamper with the recognised legal-tender qualities of either metal, it may be hoped that public opinion will not consider the proposals in any querulous, grudging spirit; particularly when the matter comes to be clearly placed before them, and its importance pointed out. Our co-operation would tend to the establishment and promotion of a friendly understanding, which would add immensely to the chances of a solution meeting with general acceptance and favour. Such a solution of the Battle of the Standards, based on the principle of compensatory action, would (the Bi-metallists claim) materially conduce to

1. The economising of the gold supply and consequent diminution of pressure on it.

2. The decreased wear of our gold coins (a waste of wealth not sufficiently realised).

3. The raising to a figure that will admit of profit to producers the prices of commodities, by counteracting the serious appreciation of gold.

4. The stimulus to our manufactures.

5. The much-sought-for relief to agriculturists from the present unhealthy competition.

6. The employment of a greater number of hands, and the check to overcrowding in large towns.

7. The elimination of the disturbing element in the world's currency.

Circumstances are daily and visibly forcing the merits of an equilibratory system of currency prominently forward. The notions concerning the merits of silver as a standard of value generally held here, and our attitude of insular abstention in respect to it, will, it is hoped, thaw before the fast-advancing warmth of enlightened and cosmopolitan views.

Then, again, the wage-earners, after well revolving the matter in their minds, will furnish a steady phalanx of advocates to press the altered condition of affairs on the consideration of our rulers. Facts and figures are stubborn materials to resist, and they can be shown to prove that a money metal which has, from time immemorial, ministered to the needs of two-thirds of the nations of the globe, and to a large portion of the rest (we mean bi-metallic nations) naturally recoils from its treatment as a quantité négligeable. Bi-metallism is not a fad, it is a living force. It claims to restore to silver its legitimate and undisputed position of usefulness, from which it is now sought to oust it. The covert sneers and assumed contempt of gold crotchet-mongers will serve only to incite the advocates of silver to greater and sustained exertions. The vitality of the cause scorns holding an equivocal position-one which may be compared to that illustrated by Stephenson's well-known reference to the coo.'

It may be interesting here to allude to the remarkable declaration of Lord R. Churchill's, in his speech at Manchester-a declaration important from the fact of its being the first speech of its kind coming from a distinguished statesman, as also from the enlightened interest which he, as the late Secretary of State for India, brought to bear in the consideration of the question of affording a fair degree of stability and steadiness to Indian Budgets. His lordship said:

It will be for you in Lancashire to turn your attention most anxiously to the dark and apparently unfathomable question of the relative value of silver and gold, and to endeavour to ascertain by your ingenuity and by your experience whether some policy in the nature of fixing permanently the relative value of these two metals may not possibly bring not only security to Indian finances, but may be a real remedy for decaying trade, and may be the means of reviving British commerce and enterprise.

We are sensible, in conclusion, of the elementary style in which we have tried to throw light on the various bearings of the question; but we were persuaded that if anything is to be done to raise the question from the slough of theory to the domain of practical discus

sion and ultimate action, it was necessary so to handle it. We trust that comprehensiveness has not been sacrificed on the altar of simplicity. If any apology is due, it must be the expression of a regret that the nature of the subject precluded an interesting or inspiriting treatment. We trust, at the same time, that no proposition has been advanced and no conclusion deduced in any dogmatic spirit; and if any collateral issue has been overlooked, or any point not thoroughly sifted, we must invoke Montesquieu's dictum-It is not always advisable so completely to exhaust a subject as to leave nothing to be done by the reader; the important thing is, not to be read, but to excite the reader to thought.'

EDWARD ALBERT SASSOON.

WOMEN AND POLITICS.

SINCE the passing of the second reading of the Women's Suffrage Bill, the discussion has been somewhat hotly carried on as to whether or no women themselves really desire to have votes, and on what grounds they can demand them. The argument for or against has been made to turn almost exclusively on the advantages women might secure from the change, and on the assumption that a hostile principle inherent in man has, since the beginning of the human race, been struggling to overcome another and antagonistic principle inherent in woman. The good government of the state and the general progress of mankind ethically and spiritually appear to be left very much out of consideration.

The question of women's influence in politics should not be approached from the point of view of Women's Rights, if by the ex-pression Women's Rights is meant the right of women to be treated as the duplicate, and not the complement, of man in the scheme of humanity. Men and women have each their special attributes and characteristics, and the two points to be considered by an impartial observer are, whether the possession of voting power by women would be of advantage to the community, and whether the effect would be to alter materially their present social position and character. At the same time, the two are so closely bound together that it is very difficult to consider them separately; they cross and recross continually in the discussion.

There are not a great many politicians who seriously object to enfranchise all ratepaying women, and the general feeling seems to be that if they really desire a vote, there is no very valid political reason against their possessing it. An intelligent and educated woman who pays rates and taxes is quite competent to have a voice in the government of her country; her interests in the State are identical with those of men, and woman's suffrage is the logical outcome of the extension of the franchise. The general argument for the admission of ratepaying women to the franchise of course excludes the idea of married women having votes; and although, no doubt, married women's views may be adequately represented by their husbands, it seems very desirable that some means of procuring votes should be put at their disposal if the measure is to pass into law.

The political subjects in which women's knowledge might be of advantage to the State are more especially connected with their experience of home life; and the influence they might bring to bear upon their unmarried sisters would be derived from a wider and more complete view of human affairs, while all exaggerations would be kept in check by their more intimate acquaintance with the men of their family. There is no reason why they should not, if they please, hold household property in their own hands, which should entitle them to a vote; or might they not be placed on the register, if they desired it, by some arrangement of a lodger franchise? There is nothing unwomanly in recording a vote by ballot, and between man and wife it would make no more difference than does the fact that a woman may now hold separately property of her own.

In the democratic tendency of the day, the theories of government by the people and by the absolute majority have superseded the theory that government is to be conducted by the enlightened and capable—the aristocracy in the strict sense of the word-for the benefit of the masses. One of the political results of the admission of women to the suffrage might be to show the fallacy of these modern doctrines, and somewhat to weaken the belief in the wisdom of purely popular government. Men who regard women as incapable of political thought would perhaps have their confidence shaken in their idol, the will of the people; for women are in a majority, therefore women would govern, which would seem to them manifestly absurd. This would not be the real result. As regards ordinary political questions women would continue to be guided by the men amongst whom they live to just the same extent as before. They act and react upon each other, and are dependent on each other. There is no antagonism between them; men have not one set of political opinions and women another; and patriotism, justice, and desire of good government may well be considered principles common to both. Women would never become as deep thinkers as men, and so long as the stronger being has the stronger intellect, so long would he continue to govern the State. Not that women are more ill-educated or ignorant than men. Both in the upper and lower classes this is distinctly not the case. In the middle class there is, perhaps, more tendency on the part of Englishmen to treat women as inferiors, and unfitted to form opinions political or otherwise, chiefly from a not irrational belief that in a well-organised society one set of duties belong to men and another to women. The higher the education of woman, in its true sense, the greater will be her capacity to appreciate distinctions, and to understand exactly the extent of her powers without usurping those of man, or claiming an impossible equality. Each would fit into the right place the round brick into the round hole, and the square into the square. In one sense women's minds are more practical than men's, while in another they are more romantic and

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