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The works for the lighting of the buildings at the Palais Boyal by electricity, inoluding the Theatre Franoais, have been inaugurated. Provision baß been made for lighting 14,000 lamps. The current year presents a mathematical cariosity that ia exotadingly rare. The num. ber 1889 is not divisible by any single figure. The memorable year 1789, of whioh this is the anniversary, presented the eame peculiarity. A oompany has been formed in Fiji to erect oil mills, and the maohinery is now about ready for work. This will shift the copra market from Europe to the spot, and ought to make a considerable difference to the planters.

On the occasion of the recent grass fire in the Forks district the Chairman of the School Committee wrote to the' Board of Eduoation recommending that pome remuneration should be given to those persons whose exertions had saved the school premises from injury. The Board deoided to reply that they had no funds available for the purpose.

Chinese Imperial astrologers deolare that the iecent fire m tho Emperor's palaoe at Pekin was an evil omen, intended as a warning against the approaches of Western inventiopß. As a result of this declaration, an imperial do.orqe ha^ been issued prohibiting the further extension of the Tientsin railway.

Two young women, disguised as men, were arrested the other day while pillaging the the apartments of a painter in the Montn}artre quarter, Paris. When taken they were armed Ayij^h rpvohora and knuck'e-dusters, but on being askod jthejr nayen gave those of Jeanne and Pauline. Jt appeared that they had put on men's clothes the botter to acoomplish their robberies.

A railroad is being oonstruoted in Baltimore tile speed upon whioh is expeoted to be 300 miles an bour. It is not for passenger trafiic, however, but for parcels. The oars will be driven through a tube 2 ft in diameter, and are expeoted to be perfectly under the control of the operator. If the experimental line now building should be a success, a line will be built, probably between Baltimore and Washington.

Mr Elston tells rather a tall story— for the truth of whioh, however, he vouchee — as illustrative of the sagacity of his well-known brown mare. It appears that tho entranoo to her paddook is olqsed by a bar whioh is kept in its place by an iron Jbplt au,d np^ fcuc potwitbstanui"g t&at tbo . latter bo.s been tightly sorewed home by a spanner, the bar &as been frequently found down and the mare jnippJDg. A watoh being set it was discovered that the mare deliberately and skilfully unsorewed the nut with her teeth— a feat the difficulty of which will be appreciated when we state that it takes thirteen turns on the thread of the bolt to sorew it home, and tbas it pannot be unsorewed with the fingers.

I The visitors at Scott's Bungalow, Waiotapu Valley (says the " New Zealand Herald " of Monday last) were fortunate in witnessing a most peculiar phenomenon that momiDg. Lake Botowhero, whioh is usually of a beautiful green i tint, completely changed its appearance. Ono half had turned iq a bright reddish yellow, tho other remaining in' its vivid green shades. The division of color was most qlear and djetjoot. Another little " ~'nao pro&imUy, usually of a coffeelake id .. " ~<*«a<L to sn apple green in and-milk color, ciiu n , " •-- « etouV* 'had one portion. At Botowneio " "'--S

evidently been an upheuval of the brigm „.,. day wbioh forms tho bed and shores of this lake, and this seems also to bavo affected the other one, but how it should have turned green when its bed is of a deep obrome oolor ia a mystery.

tjtader the heading of ■■ Cycling Extraordinary " we find the following in the " Irish Times":— The habitues of Grafton . street were the other day startled by the appearanoe of a huge cycle about 40 feet in length, and rmounted upon it no less than ten ridera, while attaohed to it was a large baggage waggon. The leviathan threaded its way through the traffio with surprising eaeo and precision. The maohine— a Viotoria, made by Singer and Co.— prooeeded along the Rook road to Dulkoy, and everywhere exoited the greatosfc attentfon. At Blaokrook the band waa visited, and aa long as tho maohine romainfld in tho precincts (he rausioianß woro deserted. Tho ton-in-lmnd has boon Rot over by J. Meoredy for tho Irish Cyclists' tour. A tont will bo carried and cooking utenails in the baygago waggon, and tho party will oarap out and prepare their own victuals.

The cultivation of the tea plant on an extensive scale is about to be undertaken in various islands of the Fiji group. The Alpha plantation, containing 340 aoros, together with nn adjoining b'ook of 280 aoroa of virgin bush land, and the Quilaootton and coooanut plantation, forming the estate of the late Mr J. E. Mason, was recently purchased at auction for £6186 by the New Zealand Loan and Meroantile Agenoy Company. The Oompanv is also about to change its Selia Levu Buoar plantation into a tea estate. The cultivation of oane is not to be wholly abandoned, but the manager's onergiea are to bo devoted chiefly to tea oulturo. Extensive clearinc contraots have been already entered into and operations will bo pushed forward vieor' ously until not fewer than 300 aorea will bo planted out. The Company has a lorce nursery of young planie to drawn from on the Alpha estate, and it is expected that there will be a considerable aoreage to pick from e«ly in. 1890, *

Lord Brassey will probably visit Australia again shortly in his yaoht Sunbeam.

The Oomte de Paris advised the Royalists to remain neutral, but in any oase not to vote against General Boulanger.

An exchange says that the sheep killed by the Wellington Meat Export Company this season have averaged 131b eaoh more than those slaughtered by the Oompany last season* The death-rate of the globe is oomputed to be 67 a minute, 96,480 a day, and 35,214,200 a year; and the birth-rate 70 a minute, 100,800 a day, and 36,772,000 a year. I Franoa oontains a far greater proportion of grown-up persona than any other nation in Europe, and a greater number of personß attain old age there than in any other oountry An advertisement elsewhere states that admission to the rink, for ladios, this evening and on following Fridays will be free, in order to give opportunity for the praotioe of the grand maroh and other movements for the coming oarnival. To-morrow night the handicap mile race for a pair of skates takes plaoe. The ekates whioh are valued at two guineas are a very handßome pair. Attention has been called in somg of the Parisian papers to the itartling resemblance presented by the electoral adreases of General Boulanger to the manifestoes issued by Louis Napoleon on the eve of the coup cV etat. In eaoh oase the appellant to the suffrages of the people has offered himself as a rallying point to those who wißh to avoid anarchy ; and in both instances there is a profuse profession of disinterested affeotion for the country. Ten years ago, says Sir John Pender, the eleotria light was merely experimental; it has now become almost universal. It is not more than twenty-five years since submarine telegraphy was first introduced ; there are now £40,000,000 sterling at the bottom of the sea, paying u fair dividend, thus showing we do not know to what extent eleotrioity may be carried ; but this we know, that the time has oome when eleotria lighting is beooming the light of the future. The " London Daily Telegraph " says :— A statement having recently been made in a Dublin newspaper that the swords in. the possession of the sth Dragoon Guards, at present stationed at the Boyal Barraokß, Dublin, were defeotive, and were, in faot, similar to those with whioh the Husßars were armed at Suakin, an official inspection has been made, and the result was announoed as follows:— Broken on striking, 25; slightly defective, bent, etc, 31 ; perfect, 363 j, total examined, 419. ■3-A gentleman who has returned from the South informs, the " Anokland Herald " that a better tone ia most observable in all the cities and oountry districts of Canterbury and Otago, and it ia quite evident that prosperity is rapily returning. Everybody is doing well, and no grumbling is to be beard. As showing the improved state of things in the agricultural districts, he mentions that the agent for a Home firm sold this year 200 reapers and binderß, and has cabled Home for 300 more to be supplied for next season. A strange death has ooourred in the family of Mr Flaxton, an old resident of Stawell, Vioioria, His youngest son (William), aged 17, waß recently playing oricket, and during tho game a bat was thrown by one of the players, or slipped from bia hands, and flew in the direction of the lad. He put up hia hands to ward off the danger, and a large splinter entered hiß right hand under the thumb nail. The accident was not thought muoh of at the time, but towards the end of last week the symptoms beoame serious and lookjaw ensued, terminating fatally.

Another big land boom has come to an untimely end. It will be remombered that a few xnogthg ago there, was conaideraqle exoite* ment about the flourishing state of the Los Angeloa- distriot in Southern California. Several Wairarapa settlers left this colony for that glittering land of promise. An Auckland gentleman forwards to the "New Zealand Herald " the following extract from a letter received from Los Angelos :—•• Our boom is obbiag into infinitesimal nothingness* Farewell, a long farewell to all •my greatness,' eaoh real estate agent can now Bay with Wolßey, and with fully as muoh truth. You have no idea of the tightness of tha money market. People whom we used to trust to the extent of thousands have now their aooounts very closely Borutinised when they treaob on -a couple of hundreds. Some blame all this |to the Presidential eleotion, while others lay the fault at the boom'a doorWhatever the oause is, however, the faat ia there stariug us In the faoe that things are in a very disagreeable position.'

Our Melbourne correspondent writing of candidates speeches at the general eleotion now going on in Viotoria says: —"The oratory at these gatherings is frequently peculiar. Probably this is beoause the average oandidate, unused to the position, takes the pteoaution ol writing out his speeoh before delivering it and committing it to momory Insuouoasnit is most likely that when he faoßß the meeting he can reoolleot nothing more tjjan toe few opening sentences of b ; 8 address and any attempt to oolleot' nig thoughts 18 frustrated by interruptions and questions, upon which ho did not oount It tbereforo happens that after getting rid of his opening remarks, usually oouched in high flown terms, ho flounders along in ridiculous attempts to Bpeak upon the Beveral questions of the bour and fails miserably, but gathering oonndenoe as he proceeds, he is able to remember the peroration whioh he penned as a brilliant finish to his speeoh. This » the moat unfortunate oirouuis'tanceof all," for the flowery language with' whioh he concludes produces nothing but a ludicrous effect, and the agitated oandidate meohanioally resumes his seat with the overpowering faeling that be has made a horrible mesa of the whole Affair."

Writing of Mr Jameß Maloney, wjio opposed Mr Grtlheß as a candidate for East Melbourne our own correspondent writes ;— ln Mr Jamea Maloneyj tho opponepta of fylr Gillies b'aye Beoured an able and talented candidate. Mr Maloney is quite a young man of superior attainments, and an eloquent speaker, who will, doubtle&s, in time develop into a distinguished orator. He is native born and Jiiberal in thought, an advooate of the system of proteption, but with a dosire to see a free interchange of coHJitnodftioo between all the Australian oolonies. It is oertain that He will run the Premier very close on polling day, and quite on the cards that he will defeat him. The " Age," with that disregard to all the usages of fair play, for whioh it ia eminently distinguished, has attempted to injure §lr Malohey's candidature in a cowardly manner. Not content with preserving a discreet silence with regard to his very enthuaiastip and successful meeting at gew the other evening, the journal in question published an untruthful paragraph to the fe&efit £b(it the paiidi^a'tc is the nominee of •••■■.••ii anjl pgbjipan ipterests, aud thas the Oaiuo... -■ ■ i.nd gijaraftteed him the licensed vituauuio ' -'''^iftijil his election expenses. This in an intuu.

maljoious misrepresentation. Mr Maloney pays his own expenses, he comes forward in the Liberal interest alone, he eupporp the principles of Looal OptioD, and is an ardent advooate of the Eduoation Aot, free, secular, and compulsory. The truth is that finding out how powerful an opponent to the Conservative Premier Mr Malocey is going to prove, the Liberal "Age" has resorted to these taotios for the purpose of throwing dußfc in the eyes of the eleotors.

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LOCAL AND GENERAL., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2097, 29 March 1889

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LOCAL AND GENERAL. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2097, 29 March 1889

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