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an actual majority, (as has occasionally been asserted,) at any rate of a large proportion of the purely English population, have been. found constantly voting with the majority of the Assembly against what is called the British party." But he considers that such results have been chiefly produced by temporary and local causes; and that the tendency of the English population has been constantly increasing towards the support of the Government, the ancient English leaders of the popular party, one by one, falling off from the majority, and every election in the eastern townships adding to the "English minority." It should here be observed, however, that Lord Durham is not able, even in these townships, removed," as he styles them, "from all contact with the French," to give to the Government party any other designation than "the English minority." The "insurrection," as he terms it, "of 1837, has completed the division; and since the resort to arms the two races have been, he says, distinctly and completely arrayed against each other, no portion of the English population being backward in taking arms in defence of the Government, and no portion of the Canadian population being allowed to do so, from the certainty that they would turn them against it.
The report then proceeds to draw a general outline of the long civil struggle of parties, based, as he states, on the ground of this national animosity-a ground which both parties, he says, disclaim, as "too revolting to the notions of good sense and charity prevalent in the civilized world." And Lord Durham undertakes to draw a nice distinction, to which it is very difficult to yield assent, between the means and the objects of the respective parties. The French Canadians, he says, "being a majority, have invoked the principles of popular control and Democracy, and appealed with no little effect to the sympathy of liberal politicians in every quarter of the world. The English, finding their opponents in collision with the Government, have raised the cry of loyalty and attachment to British connexion, and denounced the republican designs of the French, whom they designate, or rather used to designate, by the appellation of Radicals." "The French majority asserted the most Democratic doctrines of the rights of a numerical majority. The English minority availed itself of the protection of the prerogative, and allied itself with all those of the colonial institutions which enabled the few to resist the will of the many. But," continues the Report, "when we look to the object of each party, the analogy to our politics seems to be lost, if not actually reversed; the French appear to have used their Democratic arms for Conservative purposes, rather than those of liberal and enlightened movement; and the sympathies of the friends of reform are naturally enlisted on the side of sound amelioration, which the English minority in vain attempted to introduce into the antiquated laws of the Province."
What is this, but the old threadbare excuse of all aristocracies and oligarchies for resisting the demand of popular reform?
The instance which he cites in illustration of this assertion, is the Assembly's refusal to establish registry offices, and to commute the feudal tenures; yet at the same time he acknowledges that it was among the ablest and most influential leaders of the English that he found some of the opponents of both the proposed reforms; that the leaders of the French were anxious to disclaim any hostility to these reforms themselves, the reluctance heretofore exhibited by the Assembly to entertain these questions being but the result of the "extraordinary influence" over it of Mr. Papineau; that the mass of the French population strongly desired them, and that these very reforms were among the prominent objects held out as popular inducements by the leaders of the late insurrectionary movements. From these double "inconsistencies" Lord Durham does not derive the inference, that the representations by which he found himself surrounded, of the anti-liberal character of the policy of the popular party, might possibly be unjust; but merely an evidence and illustration of the favorite idea which he has (very erroneously in our opinion) made his point of departure. "I cannot but think," he remarks, "that many, both of the supporters and the opponents, cared less for the measures themselves, than for the handle which the agitation of them gave to their national hostility; that the Assembly resisted these charges chiefly because the English desired them; and that the eagerness with which many of the English urged them was stimulated by finding them opposed by the French."
He describes the main body of the English population as enterprising, industrious, intelligent, active, and, though constantly professing a somewhat extravagant loyalty and high prerogative doctrines, yet as composing "a very independent, but very manageable, and sometimes a rather turbulent Democracy"-" very determined on maintaining in their own person a great respect for popular rights, and singularly ready to enforce their wishes by the strongest means of constitutional pressure on the Government." And with respect to the comparative national conditions of the two, he says:
"The ascendency which an unjust favoritism had contributed to give to the English race in the government and legal profession, their own superior energy, skill, and capital, secured to them in every branch of industry. They have developed the resources of the country; they have constructed or improved its means of communication; they have created its internal and foreign commerce. The entire wholesale, and a large portion of the retail trade of the Province, with the most profitable and flourishing farms, are now in the hands of this numerical minority of the population."
He represents the Canadians as "an utterly uneducated and singularly inert population, implicitly obeying leaders who ruled them by the influence of a blind confidence and narrow national prejudices"-" mild and kindly, frugal, industrious, and honest; very
sociable, cheerful and hospitable, and distinguished for a courtesy and real politeness, which pervades every class of society;" but an uninstructed, inactive, unprogressive people"-"an old and stationary society, in a new and progressive world." At the same time, he ascribes the responsibility of this state of things, so far as it may be true, to "the continued negligence of the British Government," which "has left the mass of the people without any of the institutions which would have elevated them in freedom and civilization"-which "has left them, without the education, and without the institutions of local self-government, that would have assimilated their character and habits, in the easiest and best way, to those of the Empire of which they became a part.” There exists among them a remarkable equality of properties and conditions. "A few seignorial families possess large, though not often very valuable properties; the class entirely dependent on wages is very small; the bulk of the population is composed of the hard-working yeomanry of the country districts, commonly called habitans, and their connexions engaged in other occupations." Among these he says, that "it is impossible to exagge rate the want of education." "The common assertion, however, that all classes of the Canadians are equally ignorant, is perfectly erroneous"—for, he says, he knows no people among whom the higher kinds of elementary education are really extended to a larger proportion of the population; so that on a comparison of the two portions of the population it has resulted, even now, that, although the leaders of the British party possess "a practical sagacity, tact, and energy in politics," in which their opponents are said to be "deplorably deficient," yet "the greater amount of refinement, of speculative thought, and of the knowledge that books can give," the Report is forced to admit, "is, with some brilliant exceptions, to be found among the French"*-the countrymen and brethren of these much
In this place we take pleasure in recording a passing tribute of admiration to the distinguished accomplishments of a gentleman who has been made the object of a great deal of flippant and ignorant abuse by the English portion of our American press-and our readers need not be told to how large a proportion of the Whig press, especially of our commercial cities, this designation is properly applicable. We refer to Mr. PAPINEAU, who by common consent may be regarded as the representative of the French Canadian population. From some considerable opportunity of knowledge and personal judgment, we are fully justified in saying, that Mr. Papineau is one of the first men of the times. Amiable, polished, and courteous, his acquisitions are on a par with his eminent natural power and capacity of intellect. It is difficult to start a subject of conversation, in any department of literature, science, or politics, on which he does seem peculiarly qualified to shine—and that not by the slightest seeming effort or desire for display, but as luminous bodies shine, in all directions, simply because such is the law of their nature. His language is (in the English, as much as his native tongue) remarkably elegant, precise, and forcible, while perfectly easy and natural; rendering him; with the vigorous clearness of the tide of thought which flows transparently through his conversation, one of the most eloquent and persuasive of speakers. When to these attributes we add
abused Canadians. For this, little thanks are due to the British Government; but to "the piety and benevolence of the early [French] possessors of the country," who founded in the semineries and colleges established in the cities, and in other central points, institutions of which the well-endowed means have been actively directed, in the hands of the Catholic clergy, to the promotion of education, and which turn out every year between two and three hundred highly educated young men. Almost all of these are members of the family of some habitan, selected for superior quickness for a superior education; who return to their families, and (the military and naval professions, and every avenue of civil ambition, being closed to the colonist-) contribute to swell the already vastly over-stocked professions of advocate, Rotary and surgeon. In this state of things he finds the solution of what he terms "the extraordinary influence of the Canadian demagogues,"
"Thus the persons of most education in every village belong to the same families and the same original station in life, as the illiterate habitan whom I have described. They are connected with them by all the associations of early youth, and the ties of blood. The most perfect equality always marks their intercourse, and the superior in education is separated by no barrier of manners, or pride, or distinct interests, from the singularly ignorant peasantry by which he is surrounded. He combines, therefore, the influences of superior knowledge and social equality, and wields a power over the mass, which I do not believe that the educated class of any other portion of the world possess. To this singular state of things I attribute the extraordinary influence of the Canadian demagogues. The most uninstructed population any where trusted with political power is thus placed in the hands of a small body of instructed persons, in which it reposes the confidence which nothing but such domestic connexion, and such a community of interests, could generate. Over the class of persons, by whom the peasantry are thus led, the Government has not acquired or ever labored to acquire influence; its members have been thrown into opposition by the system of exclusion, long prevalent in the colony; and it is by
great simplicity and kindness, both of character and manners-a perfect purity of domestic life-a rare generosity and philosophic candor towards his opponents, as remarkably transparent in his conversation under circumstances little calculated to foster such a tone of sentiment-an earnest patriotism--an incorruptible integrity, both of private and public character-all the severe virtue (to quote an expression of one who was no blindly partial judge) of a Cato, with a mind deeply imbued with the spirit of the liberal political philosophy of the age-we shall not be surprised at what Lord Durham styles "the extraordinary influence" such a man has been able for many years to exert in the Assembly of Lower Canada; though it by no means follows that these qualities which have made him so consummate a parliamentarian should make the same individual exactly the man for a physical revolution. It was the remark of a distinguished American S nator, founded on an acquaintance dating many years back, that he had never met with a foreigner so thoroughly conversant with the history, the literature, the principles and the men of our American politics, as Mr. Papineau; and we may here allude, in passing, to the fact that Mr. Papineau's opinions fully sustain and sympathize with the general policy of the late and present Democratic Administrations, with which ke is very familiar, and especially in the great struggle for a financial reform, vitally important to the best interests, moral and material, of the country, in which both have been so deeply engaged.
their agency that the leaders of the Assembly have been enabled hitherto to move as one mass, in whatever direction they thought proper, the simple and ductile population of the country. The entire neglect of education by the Government has thus, more than any other cause, contributed to render this people ungovernable, and to invest the agitator with the power which he wields against the law and the public tranquillity."
On this subject of education, the testimony of Lord Durham fastens a scalding responsibility on the long course of British Colonial misrule, which has produced a result of general popular ignorance so little in accordance with either the natural tendency or capacity of the native population. That the Canadians are not in fault, is evident from his own admissions. "The people themselves," he says "are not indifferent, or opposed to such a scheme," (the establishment of a general and sound system of education.) "I was rejoiced that there existed among the French population a very general and a great desire to provide means for giving their children those advantages which had been denied to themselves," and "the population of either origin would be willing to submit to local assessments for this purpose." The following is all the credit which he is able to give the Government for what it has done towards the discharge of this highest of the duties of legislation:
"I am grieved to be obliged to remark, that the British Government has, since its possession of this province, done or even attempted nothing for the promotion of general education. Indeed the only matter in which it has appeared in connexion with the subject, is one by no means creditable to it. For it has applied the Jesuits' estates, part of the property destined for purposes of education, to supply a species of fund for secret service, and for a number of years it has maintained an obstinate struggle with the assembly in order to continue this misappropriation."
The following extract sheds a strong light upon the origin and growth of that "national hostility" of which he treats, again casting on the "British ascendancy" a disgraceful responsibility for all the consequences of disorder, with even the mutual errors and wrongs on points of detail which naturally grow out of such civil discussions:
"Among this people, the progress of emigration has of late years introduced an English population, exhibiting the characteristics with which we are familiar, as those of the most enterprising of every class of our countrymen. The circumstances of the early colonial administration excluded the native Canadian from power, and vested all offices of trust and emolument in the hands of strangers of English origin. The highest posts in the law were confined to the same class of persons. The functionaries of the civil government, together with the officers of the army, composed a kind of privileged class, occupying the first place in the community, and excluding the higher class of the natives from society, as well as from the government of their own country. It was not till within a very few years, as was testified by persons who had seen much of the country, that this society of civil and military functionaries ceased to exhibit towards the higher order of Canadians an exclusiveness of demeanor, which was more revolting to a sensitive and polite people than the monopoly of power and profit: nor was this national favoritism discontinued, until after repeated complaints and an angry contest, which had excited passions that concession could not allay. The races had become enemies ere a tardy justice was extorted: and even then the Government discovered a mode of