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they have no idea of a Creator, or of a future existence.'* Similarly there is no doubt that what are called the Customs of Dahomey,' instead of decreasing, have greatly increased in horror since North Guinea was first visited by the Portuguese. After allowing for all exaggerations, at least a thousand men and women, being criminals or prisoners of war, are annually sacrificed at the Grand Custom'-and five hundred persons in ordinary years. The punishment of supposed witchcraft in Northern Guinea has been growing more and more brutal within recent years. Infanticide is thought nothing of. Colonel Long, on Colonel Gordon's staff, says that when he was received by a native prince a number of his subjects had their heads struck off to commemorate the honour of his visit. He was afraid to interfere, lest his own head should be struck off as well.

The picture is dark enough. As we gaze upon it the gloom gathers in intensity. But happily we are not obliged to sit down content with the pessimist view. There is no lack of evidence to show that there is good material in the Africs from which good results may be confidently expected. We may confidently contrast with the sweeping language of Sir Samuel Baker the simple authentic narratives of Livingstone and Stanley. Those who have known the African longest and best speak most kindly of him, and seem privileged to indulge the highest hopes of his future. One of the greatest of the massive services rendered by Livingstone to humanity was the testimony which he bore to the fidelity and affection of the sable children of Africa. They reciprocated his services, and with the sagacity of love, contrary to the unwise advice of his well-intentioned countrymen, bore his beloved form to the sea, and so enabled it to rest within the tender gloom of the great Abbey. It is impossible, with Livingstone's journal, and opinions confronting us, to acquiesce in so sweeping a condemnation. Mr. Stanley, like Livingstone, speaks with the highest gratitude of the devotion and goodness of his band. What a long, long and true friendship was here sundered! What a noble fidelity these untutored souls had exhibited in every scene of strife with man and nature through which these poor men and women had borne me company, and solaced me by the simple sympathy of common suffering, came hurrying across my memory!' It has been said,' wrote Mr. Stanley to the Royal Geographical Society, that the African is unimprovable and irredeemable, but that I utterly deny.' Mr. Rowley, who has *Angolo and the River Congo,' i. 247.

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carefully studied the religious nature of the African, can draw some crumbs of comfort even from their superstition and debasement. He argues that although their spiritualism may represent the lowest stages of religious conception, yet, in the primary idea of a sympathy between the natural and the supernatural, there are the possibilities of the highest spiritual advancement. Christianity is not simply a religion of precepts, but a spiritual life system, and the religion of the Africans is based upon a belief in the existence and agency of the spiritual world. On this basis a living structure may yet be built. We may compare also Livingstone's words. It is part of their original faith to ascribe everything above human agency to unseen spirits. Goodness or unselfishness impresses their minds more than any kind of skill or power. They say, "You have different hearts from ours; all black men's hearts are bad, but yours are good." The prayer to Jesus for a new heart and right spirit at once commends itself as appropriate.'

Moreover, it must be said that the general language of hopeless denunciation is altogether unscientific. We often find in those who use such language an utter want of discrimination between the east and the west, the north and the south. They confuse the races of Africa just as they used to confuse the races of Hindostan. The country has an astonishing variety of linguistic systems. The populations may be said to arrange themselves in zones with a kind of mathematical accuracy. The whole of the north of Africa, to the southern borders of the Sahara, belongs to the Caucasian race, and these have been reinforced by European settlers. Behind the Desert, extending from the Atlantic to the Southern Nile, are the great masses of negro population. They are divided into two leading groups, and then break up into various unities. Many of these interior races are altogether superior to what is called 'the typical negro.' Livingstone in his last journal writes, "I would back a company of Manyuema men to be far superior in shape of head, and generally in physical form too, against the whole Anthropological Society.' Lastly, hemmed in by the Boers and the European colonies, we have the exhausted race of the Hottentots and the Bechuanas, who, from the evidence of language and the remarkable ruins discovered by ancient travellers, appear to have lapsed from a higher estate. The traveller Barth tells us that he has noted the ruins of admirable structuers, and vast territories are now howling wildernesses which were once in the highest state of cultivation.

We cannot believe that there is any branch of the great human family to which the words of the everlasting gospel, arranged as they are in the simplest forms of human speech, can be delivered altogether in vain. Richard Cecil once said that the gospel had once tamed the man tiger, the New Zealander, and the man fish, the Esquimaux. In Africa we already find a native bishop, many ordained clergy, and very many native congregations. We find also genuine records of martyrdom which recall the glorious records of the native church of the neighbouring island of Madagascar. In many colleges of Europe and America, negroes are found partaking of the highest culture of our time, and holding their own among their white associates. We have alluded to the increasing presence of Europeans in search of new lands, and when once means of locomotion are provided from the coasts to the central regions, we may expect that these fertile lands will afford an enormous field to the increasing European populations shut up within inexorable geographical limits. Above all, the missionary spirit, which constitutes the very law of the vitality of churches, is now concentrated upon Africa in a way which has never before happened, except, perhaps, in the days of Cyprian and Augustine. Wherever the cross is raised, all things harmful begin to fade away, and all the precious fruits and flowers of human life flourish beneath its benignant shadow. In the sacred Hebrew phrase, Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God.' 'The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them, and the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose.'


ART. VIII.-The Practice of an Architect.

FEW achievements of artistic skill in Western Europe can surpass those which were accomplished during the four hundred years which began with the twelfth and closed at the end of the fifteenth century, by the men who created Gothic architecture. The study of their buildings has been earnestly, almost passionately, pursued during the present century, in order that we might clothe our own constructions in the forms which they present. This pursuit has been crowned with as much success as perhaps can attend any revival, and has been followed till some of those engaged in it have become so dazzled by the magnificent works of ancient art upon which they have concentrated their attention as to seem half

blinded when they try to look round at this busy modern world in which they and we live.

One symptom of this purblind state is the serious advocacy of the idea that those conditions under which the work of ancient architecture was done can be brought back, and the assertion that great advantages would ensue.

When we build as the monks and the freemasons are supposed to have built, then our architecture, we are told, will be worthy to succeed theirs. Vain hope and deceptive illusion! It is indeed true that the buildings they erected are matchless as works of art; and could we go back to the conditions under which books were reproduced in the first few years after the invention of printing, or, better still, to those prevailing in the last few years before that invention, how far superior would each volume be, as a piece of typography or of calligraphy, to that which the reader has in his hand! The one change is just as impracticable as the other. Happily for England we shall never revert to the conditions which prevailed during the middle ages in our conduct of matters, religious, political, social, or commercial; nor can we do so in our art or our manner of building.

These observations and those which follow are called forth by an article which recently appeared in this Review under the title of The Profession of an Architect.'* Had the writer confined himself in that article to an eulogy of the works of the best bygone age or to an advocacy of what he considers to be the true means to restore the departed glories of the past, no kind of exception would have been taken. Unfortunately he has written under the impulse of a discontent so profound that he has launched out into an unfair and unfounded attack upon the whole profession of architects, of which the bitterness is only equalled by its utter want of candour.

The courtesy of the Editor having afforded me an opportunity of saying something on the other side of the question, the attempt will be made in this article to state the most important of the actual circumstances under which buildings are at the present day designed and executed, to describe some of the features of modern architectural practice as now carried on, and to show that they are the legitimate outgrowth of those circumstances, and that as long as our social and material conditions remain what they are, architects must continue to work much as they now do. This, it is hoped, may, in passing, dispose of the idea that working men can le *British Quarterly,' No. cxlii.

entrusted with the design and direction of building operations, but it is undertaken in order to vindicate the profession from some of the changes so recklessly brought against it. At any rate, such a paper is more likely to be of service to the readers of this Review than one in which the attempt were made to follow The Profession of an Architect' step by step, and to correct all that I believe to be erroneous in its statements. I must, however, here say once for all that I unhesitatingly challenge the truth of almost every assertion made in that article to the detriment of the profession to which I have the honour to belong. I believe myself to be in a position to know thoroughly the truth of what I am writing, and I have appended my name as a proof of good faith.

Before going further, it may be well to add that the present article refers to architecture as a profession rather than a fine art; and that throughout reference is intended to the practice of architects of respectable repute, regularly educated for their profession in the manner approved by the general body of its members. That the writer of The Profession of an Architect' had the same class of men in view is abundantly clear, both by what he says and by the references given through woodcuts or otherwise to the works of architects of the highest eminence. He has adroitly avoided introducing names, but he has produced sketches of statues representing the late Sir Charles Barry and the late Professor Cockerell, and has appended to them singularly unfair and inappropriate descriptive epithets. He has given incorrect illustrations of portions of work by the late Mr. Edward Barry and the late Sir Gilbert Scott, and coming at last to one living architect, he has fallen foul of a prominent work now in hand by Mr. Waterhouse. There need be little hesitation, therefore, in assuming that the attack made on the character and honour, as well as the artistic ability of architects, is intended to apply to the leaders of the profession and to those with whom they associate cordially as colleagues. It is perhaps on another ground necessary to premise thus much, for architects as yet require no diploma in order to permit them to practise their profession, and so the title is from time to time assumed by men who are not fit, either by personal character or by professional training, to hold it; and if these do things worthy of reprobation, by all means let them be exposed. The cause of men of this sort is not advocated here, nor is it their character which it attacked in The Profession of an Architect;' and it is the conditions under which men of respectable standing have to work which we propose now to examine.

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