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SIR JULIUS VOGEL'S NOVEL

The correspondent of the Sydney "Telegraph" writes :— Hi« novel is as remarkable as the man himself. I bave not bad an opportunity of seeing the complete work, bat Sir Jallas was., good enough to read to me an abstract of it, ; from which I gather that if the book is as effective In execution as it is striking m design, it should command a very large measure' of attention m the literary and political world. It would not be fair to the author to give any description of the plot, or rather narrative, of the book, but it will be of general interest and may stimulate some to read the work when published if I briefly sketch a few of the striking ideas embodied m U. la the. first place, it should be underatond that it is not a novel In the ordinary tense, but la a oaratlve of oertain soolai •nd political events of a more or less sensational obaraoter which are supposed to happen la the next oentary. It opens with a prologue, m which there is a meetlog of Australasian, Canadian, and South Afrioan Premlire, who demand of the Prime Minister of England the immediate settlement of the Irish question on the bii.li of a concession of Home Rule Government similar to that enjoyed by the colonies. An impertinent answer from the English Prime Minister irritates the colonials, who promptly take measures to force the hands of the English Government, and tbos secure the carrying out of tbeit demands. The year m wbioh this event Is supposed to happen Is, I think, 1920, from wbloh I infer that Sir Jnlius Yogel 1> not hopeful of seeing Mr Gladstone resl'se his ambition of settling the Irish question before he dies. Tbe narrative then jumps into the year £000, and describes a series of striking events. The dream of Imperial federation has bean realised, although Id a much more ptsotioal way than the present advocates of that scheme contemplate, and the result U a magnificent English-speaking territory, with the balance of power transferred to the Antipodes. .The reigning mosaxch is a king, but the Prime Minister of. the Empire is a woman, and the leader of the Opposition is of the same stx Equal political rights are enjoyed by the sexev, but the dominating pirtiei In the State are controlled by women, who are supposed to show superior adaptability for political work. From this we m&y readily gather that Sir Julius V gel, like Mr Gladstone and Sir Henry Parkes, shares that " dream of fair women" of the future, In wbloh the perfect equality of the sexes, serially, politically, and commercially, will be recognised. I fancy he even goes fatyond most of as In this respect, for he •xpretsed his aonvlotbn to me In aonversatlon that the experience of tbe future would prove women <o be the best fitted for . intellectual administration and men for the performance of executive work* Not that he looks tinon pbjs csl labor as one of the conditions of the future centuries . On tha contrary, he holds — and I think there are not many ths>oghtful people who will not ■gree with him — that the forces of nature •apply the world with as muoh physical power M we oan possibly utilise, and that ft Is the function of mankind to- furnish the Intelligence necessary for the control of these great forces. -Physic*). labor .he very properly holds to be a condition of mankind In the transition stages from barbarism to perfect civilisation —from the state of existence In which all mankind won Its bread by tbe sweat of its brow, to tbe stat« when mankind, with highly developed intelligence, holds In control wind and wave, and light and heat, and all the multitudinous phases of nature's forces, and utilises them at will to do the work of the world; This does not,. ln Sir Julias' view, Imply any condition of Idleness, for m the days of which he writes it will be regarded as a term of reproach to be called Idle. la those bsppy days, slio, there is to be no poverty, for it shall be tbe duty of the State to provide every human oreatnre with the necessaries of life In the way of food aad clothes and habitation, but those who are tie recipients of this bounty are to be marked out frrm the rest of the community by uniform a* vagabond* content ta.eat the bread of idleness. There Is to be no more recovery for debt. If one man Is m debt to another he • may be proceeded agtinst In the Courts of law, hot the limits of the functions of the Court In such oases shall be to determine the aim nut of the debt and to post the debtor as a defaulter- -a reproach from wbloh he Bhall not hs free until he has discharged tbe debt. T bnow there are a good many people who think aome such plan as this capable of Immediate adaptation to oar oommnclal life, Wekno«r that "debts of hgnor " ere now more pcompt'y met than the leegally-recoverable debts of trade, and that many men who think It no blemish npon therr character to pass through the bankruptcy oourtt would bang their heads m shame if the were " posted " at Tattormil's as defaulter*. The taxation of tbe future, aooordlng to Sir Jullqs, will be simply Income and •ucoession duties. In the Inoome tax the first £500 will go free, above that amount at tax of 25 par cent is imposed. Upon tbe same principle In the succession du'ies the first £10,000 is to esospe, but all above that amount is to be levied upon to fhaj extent cf 25 per cent. There are to be no Customs duties within tbe British dominions, but prohibitory duties on all imports fiom foreign oountrief, the reason being that In tbe estimation of the State the British dominions are absolutely self*sastalning within themselves. The navy is to be national, bat the land forces, are to bs local and on t, volunteer basU, the rank of volunteer being In the. popnlar estimation more honorable than that of a regular or paid ■oldler. In the «olent!6o world there are to be such wonders as aerial ships, for Sir Jrjlius sharee with the poet tbe distinction of prophesying that our grand-children , , . . the Heavens fill with commerce, argosies of magic sails, Pilots 'of the purple twilight, dropping down with costly bales. The United gta'es-Oanadlan disputes are to be settled by the combined forces of Britain and O.sntda invading the United States, annexing the States of New England and New York (on the Alsace tad Lorraine principle) and transferring the eipftal cf Canada to the. city of New There Is maoh more of the same kind m this very interesting book, but ac I have no more Intimate knowledge of Its contents than I derived from a single reading of this tbitraot, I cannot pretend to give note than a rough and imperfeofc sketch of Its contents. . . The disappearance of tbe white moss rose JB notioed m England. One florist claimt that a rpie which for more than thirty jean has blossomed white m his garden baa anddenly pat out red roses. The only cause oi Ibis sorpming change WM tba enrichment ol tt»Mts<

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18881120.2.15

Bibliographic details

SIR JULIUS VOGEL'S NOVEL, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 1992, 20 November 1888

Word Count
1,225

SIR JULIUS VOGEL'S NOVEL Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 1992, 20 November 1888

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