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The Evening Star TUESDAY. AUGUST 6, 1889.

Tin’ House seems to be all the better for the stonewalling epiJ )ut ?* i 1 !“\ Tt, is at least in n> « g QO( | i uimor now, and it has settled to work in an exemplary manner. Some of the small borough representatives are, to be sure, slightly out of tune, owing' to the loss of the large percentage they thought they had secured ; but as there is no chance of their doing anything against the Representation Bill they will doubtless reconcile themselves to the inevitable with the best grace possible. Political sorrows do not sink very deep into the heart, and the House as a whole is in excellent spirits, just as if it had been out for a holiday. The House did some, very good worklast night. The clause in the Representation Bill providing for the amalgamation of the city constituencies was carried by 48 to 15. This division marks a great change—we may say a great advance —in the opinion of honorable members, when it is remembered that last session the proposal was rejected. Public opinion has been maturing rapidly of late. Even during the brief stonewalling period this process went on at a quite perceptible rate in regard to several important questions—notably that of the reduction of the number of members, and of the amalgamation of the city constituencies. It is said in the lobbies that a considerable number, perhaps a majority, of honorable members would vote for keeping the representation at its present figure. This, however, may well bo doubted. The manner in which the country has recently expressed itself on the subject would deter all hut utterly reckless members from giving such a vote. The question is, in fact, definitely settled, and will not need the protection of the Upper House. Public opinion with regard to the amalgamation of the city electorates lias also hardened very much of late, and Mr Eisn must have known that ho was leading a forlorn hope when he divided the Committee on the clause. Another bit of good work done last night was the abolition of plural voting. Sir George Grey has thus succeeded in carrying one of his favorite proposals, and that without the suspension of the Act of 18S7. The only representative of the old Tory feeling was Captain Rcsselr, who in this matter is decidedly behind the age. He contended that it was most unjust that property should be deprived of all its privileges in respect to representation. But such a contention does not accord with the dominant democratic principles, whether these principles bo in accord with abstract justice or not. Any privilege, however, which the plural vote gives to property Is so inappreciably small that it is more than counterbalanced by the insidious feeling which it excites in the popular mind. Sir George Grey’s amendment will neither do much good to the people nor much harm to the propertied class; but it wall remove a slight cause of discontent from our electoral laws, and help to round off our political constitution according to the democratic idea. The House is certainly to be congratulated on last night’s work.

The battle of Toski ought, in a small way, to prove one of the The Soudan decisive battles of the Campaign. world. After such a severe defeat and disastrous rout it would seem impossible for the Dervishes ever to think of trying conclusions with a Jlritish Egyptian force again. But they have been so often crushed in similar encounters before that it would be rash to infer that their fanaticism has been at length subdued. For the present, at any rate, there is no longer any fear of their invading Egypt. The lighting at Toski seems to have been of a desperate character, but there can be no doubt as to the result. The overthrow of the Mahdi’s followers was complete : their force, indeed, appears to have been almost annihilated. General Grenfell captured 1,000 prisoners; 1,500 were left dead on the field ; and the rest, hundreds of them, no doubt, mortally wounded, yyere driven into the desert to die of hunger or thirst, go, at least, says the telegram. Common humanity inspires the hope that the survivors may not all perish. The slaughter whiph takes place in these Soudan campaigns shocks the modern humanitarian sentiment. It was said that the very soldiers, after Teb or Tamanicb, sickened at the horrid work, and ciamorqd to be sent elsewhere. In fprmer days, savage nations were nearer an equality with civilised in the matter of fighting. Now they are nowhere. The wonderful perfection tp .which the implements

iof destruction have been brought places them at an absolute disadvantage. But for this, the heroic little army which Bir Herbert Stewart led across the Bayudah Desert would never have seen Metemneh. Man for man the Soudanese warriors are a match for any soldiers in the world; but what is a force of the bravest men against the latest rifles and Maxim guns 1 Such fighting as that in the Soudan can thus scarcely be called war, although there is always danger in the tremendous onset of the Dervishes. In one of Graham’s battles in the Eastern Soudan one of his squares was broken, and for a minute or two victory seemed to be declaring for the enemy. The steadiness and discipline of the British soldiers retrieved the clay. In an incredibly short time the broken form was restored, and their deadly weapons soon ended the conflict. It may, indeed, be said that the Soudanese are the only warriors in the world who could perform such a feat; but expei ience shows that, with ordinary care and skill on the part of the British commanders, even the fanatical followers of the Mahdi are now little more than material for slaughter. The telegram says that the battle of Toski lasted for several hours; that the Dervishes were driven from hill to hill, fighting desperately as they were forced back; and that they were charged repeatedly by the cavalry while valiantly attacking the Egyptian right. And yet General Grenfell had only seventeen killed and 100 wounded. The Dervishes, in a word, were simply slaughtered. It is the first time since the Bouthan troubles began that a British general has captured a, large number of prisoners. What will General Grhxi-tell do with his 1,000 Dervishes'! He will scarcely send them down to Cairo, to be kept in prison ; and it would not do for the British Government to be art and part in reducing them to slavery, even if that were practicable. The probability is that they are liberated by this time —let go, to live or perish, as the case may be. The Mahdist leader committed a great mistake in venturing into the narrow Nile Valley. His only chance of victory in an encounter with an Egypto-British force was in the open desert. Thither, however, no Egypto-British force would have followed him. It is not likely, after this further terrible experience, that the Mahdists will again attempt a descent on Egypt; and if the battle of Toski should have the effect of putting an end to these shocking Soudan conflicts, the 1,1)00 savage heroes whose corpses are now exposed to the fierce African sun will not have fallen in vain.

The Alameda left San Francisco on the 27th ult., and is due nt Auckland on the 17th inst. Major-general Edwards, who is now engaged in Australia inquiring into the efficiency of the colonial defence and military forces, arrives at the Bluff on September 0, and will hold volunteer parades at all centres in .New Zealand. To-day’s cablegrams report that Captain Hansby (of the e.s. Bupleix, and formerly of the Hawea) met with a shocking deatli at Sydney last night. While, entering a. tram he fell, and the wheels passed over him, crushing him to death. MrJ. Cornerly, writing in the ‘Matin,’ sees in the increase of foreign cardinals a great chance of a foreign J’ope. There can be no doubt that in France there exists a secret ecclesiastical movement to push forward at the next conclave a non-Italian cardinal. Three more members of the Sacred College arc now French; and Cardinal Lavicerie is at the head of the movement. The general opinion, however, is that neither France nor Germany can at present fulfil tho conditions required in a foreign I’opc, and tho choice must eventually fall upon an English or an American cardinal—possibly Cardinal Manning.

Yesterday morning judgment was given by the Chief Justice on the motion for a change of venue in the actions which have been brought against Inspector Thompson and Detective Chrystal, the clerk of the District Court in Invercargill, and others, by Hay. for damages for alleged illegal arrest in Wellington a few weeks ago. Last week the Chief Justice decided that the man had not been legally apprehended, as the warrant was not in the hands of those who effected the arrest. Hay then instituted proceedings against those who had been concerned in his arrest, and an application was made by defendants for a change of venue from Wellington to Invercargill. His Honor refused the motion on the ground that the cause of action had arisen in Wellington, but intimated that in the case of the clerk of the Court the refusal was without prejudice. In the Magistrate’s Court at Wellington yesterday Hume and Sons sought to recover from the Union Steam Ship Company LI 2s, described as anticipated profit upon a shipment of Hour which had arrived by one of the company’s steamers in a damaged, and consequently unsaleable, condition. The flour had been returned to the company, who paid the actual cost of the flour, but denied plaintiffs’ claim for anticipated profit. After hearing evidence and argument, His Worship gave a verdict for the defendant, holding that the company’s rules as to the responsibility for goods entrusted to their care applied to the case, and was a perfectly reasonable one. Costa of court and counsel, amounting to LI Os, were also given against plaintiff.

The Princess’s Theatre was last night packed to the doors downstairs, while the circle also was well patronised, when another change of programme was made by the Buffalo Minstrels. The opening scene represented a drawing-room, with the members of the company seated on lounges, chairs, etc., while the Spanish Students assisted the orchestra in the opening overture. Mr D. Skeats sang a pretty ballad,_‘The old home,’ in a pleasing manner, while the respective contributions of Will Hugo, Misses Warren and Verne, and Dan Tracey were loudly applauded. Miss Tessie Cleveland’s waltz song ‘ Venita ’ was the feature of tho programme, and she had to respond to an undeniable encore. The second part contained a varietyofsongs,sketches,and instrumental selections. In a double song and dance Messrs Wadley and W. Hugo were thoroughly at home, being followed by Miss Priscilla Verne and Dan Tracey in character impersonations, which, although somewhat edd, were received with favor by the audience, The’Spanish Students were enthusiastically recalled for the admirable rendering of selections from Scottish airs, and Senor Gatzambide replied with his ‘Tambourine waltz, ; for which ho also was encored. It is needless to say that C. Hugo caused roars of laughter the merriment commenced with his appearance pp the stage. A domestic sketch by Miss C. Deveroux and Mr D. Skeats, a duet by Misses Cleveland and Warren, and musical selections by Messrs Gollyer and Godfrey proved acceptable items, while the Irish recitation ‘O’Reilly’sFenian Cat-’ by Tom Thumb (Mr W. Robinson) capsed much amusement, Miss Verne repeated her “London character sensation ” entitled ‘ .O’er the bridge,’ which proved very enjoyable, and will bear repetition. The farces ‘ Bribery ’ and ‘ Waiting,’ in which Messrs Hugo and Robinson provide the major portion of the fun, served their purpose, and caused roars of laughter. The same programme will be repeated this evening, and on Thursday night a novelty is announced in the shape of a ballad-singing contest, for which a trophy will be given to the successful competitor.

All the cases set down for hearing at the Resident Magistrate’s Court to-day were either struck out or adjourned without hearing. We are informed by Mr D. Wishart that by a letter dated Brisbane, July 24, he is advised that Mr Charles Santley will reach Dunedin about Christmas, and will give a aeries of six concerts in this City. Mr Eden George, photographer, a candidate at the recent election for Christchurch North, brought an action for L2OO damages in the Supreme Court yesterday against Mr Meers, another photographer, who issued a cartoon representing Mr John Ollivicr as “Dignity” and Mr George in a dissolute appearance as “ It.” The defendant had obtained a negative of Mr George’s photo, from a former of plaintiff. Judgment was given for defendant without costs, the Judge remarking that the cartoon was inoffensive; defendant to return the negative and not print more copies.

A private letter received in town states that the roads from Shannon (near Strath Taieri) leading to Outram are extremely bad, and all but prevent traffic of any description other than foot. Scarcely any rain has fallen this winter, but the extraordinarily heavy frosts which have prevailed for some months are the cause of the roads being in such a state. Residents are anxiously waiting for a change in the weather, which at present prevents anything like satisfactory work being done on the stations. The frosts aro said to be the heaviest experienced for some considerable time.

In conversation with a newspaper interviewer at Napier, Mr W.’L. Bright, M.P., said;—“ Both Mrs Bright and myself were charmed with the magnificent scenery and the wonderful Hot Lakes. I never had such an enjoyable trip in my life. The snowy range you see after leaving Taupo is equal to anything I have seen in Switzerland. The conch service is excellent, and everybody we met has becu most hospitable and agreeable, I shall have a very good word for New Zealand when I get Home. The colony’s all right as far as I can see; you only want more population, With a climate like you’ve got here, and land, New 'Zealand is bound to prosp> r. Any extravagance that has been in the past < to teach the colonists to be more prudent. There’s a prosperous future before the colony, in ray opinion.” A delicious story, for the accuracy of which wo can vouch (writes the ‘ Pall Mall Gazette), is going around anent Mr Irving’s and Miss Ellen Terry’s visit to Sandringham. It appears that all was going beauti fully with ‘ The Merchant of Venice’—Her Majesty seated in front, stick in hand, and all attention—until Miss Terry’s time came as Portia to deliver her great speech about “Mercy.” We all know how she does it, advancing towards the Jew and making a marked and peculiar pause before delivering her oration. The Queen, who was all attention, and had probably been carefully instructed in her own youth by the Duchess of Kent or her pood governess in Shakespeare’s “tit-bits,” was eagerly following the gifted actress, but quite mistook the pause for some sudden failme of memory. Fancy Ellen being overawed by Her Majesty into forgetting her part! So the Queen began prompting her quite low “The quality of mercy,” etc., but Miss Terry did not take the cue, and Her Majesty then repeated rather more loudly and encouragingly “ The quality of mercy is not strained.” This was almost too much for Miss Terry, but, with a violent effort to suppress her twinkling merriment, she controlled herself, and gracefully accepted her cue from her Sovereign. Good Queen Bess, wo know, used to shout at the preachers, and correct them openly in theology when they preached before her, but this is probably the first time that an actress has ever been honored by having a Queen and Empress as stage prompter. The following characteristic letter from an Auckland member has been received by an Auckland resident:—“ Business in the House is in an unhappy plight. The country is requiring the most tender political care; many of its inhabitants distressed ; while their representatives are squabbling and beating the air over matters that ought to cause little trouble between parties willing to meet each other in a sincere effort to bring about a reasonable compromise. To speak plainly, I feel us if this session is a huge and costly farce. Estimated by the good we are likely to do, the honoraria and the cost of assembling us would do the taxpayers more service if spent in the erection of much needed school buildings. Our House is curiously mixed. Perhaps because of ray ignorance of Parliamentary tactics, or that I have expected too much from myself and my fellow members, I am disappointed. with my political experiences. Platform ami hustings pledges have become receding echoes, while we present the spectacle of a political blend, incapable of doing such work as the best of our people know to be necessary, and yet wc are not bad enough to make them denounce our shortcomings as they ought. While the people of New Zealand are content to form a Parliament having such an incoherent mixture of political sentiment, political notion will necessarily be vague ami utterly wanting in the power to break through the rigid barriers with which the governing traditions of Wellington have guarded themselves against inconvenient reforms. During the past week a wonderful talking power has been evolved from our city brothers. Ido not mean to suggest that there has been in the slightest degree a Pentecostal touch affecting their hearts when I say that men usually silent have become as those filled with new wine. Some of the speeches have been good, but in the main the quality of qur spouting diarrhom has been as mixed (minus the gold and silver) as the material composing the imago that troubled the dreaming Nebuchadnezzar.”

The ordinary monthly meeting of the Gaelic Society will be held to-morrow evening in the Oddfellows’ Hall, Stuart street. The Palace Rink has been closed for a couple of days for a thorough renovation and reorganisation, and is to be reopened to-raor>'ow night under the management of Mr Davie Aldrich, who is recently from Home, and is said to possess ranch business capability and tact. As he contemplates making some desirable reforms, and having everything connected with the rink under his personal supervision, his instalment as manager should be welcomed by the patrons. The following new patents have been applied for: -W. W. Ilolford, Picton, for an improved method of d.-easing New Zealand flax or other fibrous substances; Richard Carnall, Dunedin, for a side-fastening shirt; William M’Kcgan, Wellington, for an improved automatic feeding, scraping, and washing flax machine ; Thomas Lewis, Raugitati, for the better and more expeditious method of date stamping and printing letters, tickets, and other things; J. H. Kuibbs, Sydney, for an improved fire escape ; John M'Gregor, Roslyn, photographer, for an enamel for coating wood for preserving butter for export or for keeping-; Jolm Brown, Thomas Hodges Jones, and J. <l. Oakman, all of Sydney, for an improved combined railway buffer and automatic coupling.

The following persons are inquired for in ‘Lloyd’s Weekly Florence Ayers, who in IBS 1 ! wrote from the General Post Office, Aucklaid, hj requested to write to her father. Alfred Huxford, gardener, who three years ago was at Parnell; his brother Robert asks. George Bush, last heard of in Dunedin; bis mother is anxious. Jo-oph Young, who sailed for New Zealand in 1884, is requested to write to his mother. John Beaton, formerly of Poole, Dorset, who twenty-five years ago left the Loyal Engineer to goto Auckland, is sought by his sister. Archibald Bradley, who last wrote “Care of Captain Kiddey, Star and Garter Hotel, Barhadocs street, Christchurch,” is requested to write to his sister. John and Mrs Clarke and Robert Hellyer, who went to New Zealand in 1883 ; their brother George is anxious. Fred James Savage, who went to Auckland in 1884; his mother is anxious. Thomas Streater, who twelve years ago was residing with Charles Adams, Greendale, Selwyn, Chnstohuroh; his brother seeks him. Arthur Green, who last wrote from Westport; his sister seeks him. Obarles Tilley, last heard of in 1883 at New Plymouth, is inquired for by Ids sister Ellen. Henry C. Ward, formerly of Walworth, last heard of in New' Zealand nine years ago ; his mother is anxious. George Warner (Jackson', aged forty-throe, who was heard of at Wellington, is begged to write to his mother. Barry Brown, seaman, is sought by his mother; he last wrote in 1887, from New Zealand. Catherine Owen, who sailed fot New Zealand in 1870, is asked to write to her sister. William Rushton, formerly of Sheffield, and in 1881 was working at Springfield, Christchurch; his mother makes inquiries.

Presbytery of Dunedin will meet in First Ohuich to-morrow evening. Drawing-room entertainment in All Saints’ Schoolroom on Thursday evening—tableaux vivants and music.

The fourth of the series of Saturday concerts will take place in the evening this week or. account of the Maori football match coming off in the afternoon. On this occasion the gallery of the Choral Hall will be thrown open to the public. The programme will include, besides p : ano duets, solo and vocal items, a trio for clarionet, piano, and viola, and also one for violin, piano, and cello; Signor Fernandez, one of the Spanish Students, having been engaged for Saturday. He will also play a cello solo.

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The Evening Star TUESDAY. AUGUST 6, 1889., Issue 7978, 6 August 1889

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The Evening Star TUESDAY. AUGUST 6, 1889. Issue 7978, 6 August 1889

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