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restrictions of commerce have been removed, and, by the adoption of Free Trade, those separate interests which divided nations have been happily bridged May the Almighty, of His infinite goodness, grant to the omen a happy completion. Joseph Cubitt, engineer."

Whilst on the whole I think London has greatly improved, it is rather lamentable to observe how certain districts, formerly full of well-to-do workers, have entirely changed their character-Bethnal Green and Shoreditch are cases in point. This, of course, is due to the overwhelming triumph of the factory system.

Here, in former days, the descendants of the old French weavers carried on a prosperous trade, now but a memory of the past.

My friend, the Reverend Mr. Osborne Jay of Holy Trinity Vicarage, Shoreditch, who does such excellent work in this part of London, has given me many interesting details of its past history.

Even thirty years ago a large number of the long windows known as "weavers' windows," filling almost a side of a house, were to be seen in some of the streets, but now only a few remain.

Though the majority of French Huguenots have been absorbed in the general population and drifted away from the district, French names are still not uncommon, such as Delieu, Polaine, Delarey, and the like. One family-Cockneys of the fourth generation



which bears the name of Ogilby-must originally have migrated to France from Scotland and probably experienced many strange vicissitudes before settling down in this part of London. What romance and tragedy would reveal themselves were one but able to discover the true history of some of the French families whom the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes drove from their fatherland, the language of which a number jealously retained up to comparatively recent times.

Mr. Gladstone once told Mr. Jay that forty years ago his predecessor had a weekly celebration in the French language; the attendance, however, even then was not large.

A few of the old looms, including, I believe, one handloom which was brought over from France and set up by Huguenot refugees, are still in existence, though it has been said comparatively few weavers remain-the majority having migrated to Braintree. In course of time the descendants of the Huguenots spread from Spitalfields into Bethnal Green, Mile End, and Old Ford, whilst becoming Cockneys of a most pronounced type. These, like almost all the very poor, are for the most part utterly ignorant of their own history. The whirligig of time produces many strange changes; few surely can be more striking and pathetic than the evolution, or rather retrogression, of the stern, dignified old Camisards-the stanch old fighting men of the Cevennes, who held the dragoons of the Roi Soleil at bay-into inhabitants

of the poverty-stricken London East End, the majority of poor, indifferent physique, drifting aimlessly along, submerged amongst that vast section of the population which just contrives to live.

There is at present, it is said, some prospect of a revival of the weaving industry in Bethnal Green owing to the interest taken by Queen Mary in fabrics of English manufacture, and her patronage of the Spitalfields Silk Industry. The general condition of the district, as on my visits to Mr. Jay I have been glad to observe, has, owing to his admirable and self-sacrificing efforts, greatly improved within recent years a different state of affairs from the early Seventies of the last century, when the descendants of the old weavers were described by a great newspaper as "Sickly mothers nursing sickly babies, sickly girls toying in a sickly manner with sickly weaver boys." "Dreadful old women as ugly as sin, who looked as if they supported nature on a diet of lucifer matches and gin." The late Mr. George Augustus Sala, who wrote the article in question after a visit to the district, together with the paper in which his article appeared for the time being, attained great local unpopularity; but there can be little doubt that the exposure of the sad and miserable state of affairs which then prevailed ultimately produced nothing but good.

Considering the admirable work which Mr. Jay is doing, he should receive greater support from the wealthy West End. Unfortunately unobtrusive and



really beneficent philanthropy in these days of blatant advertisement seldom obtains its due share of appreciation.

How few of the wealthy West End butterflies, I wonder, realize the self-sacrificing efforts of those who live and work amongst the poor, and what noble self-sacrifice and devotion is displayed in nursing the poverty-stricken sick. I have come thoroughly to realize this from constantly visiting the London Hospital, a practice I still keep up; there is little that interests me so much as a talk with the matron-Miss Lückes, a most admirable organizer.

In all our vast metropolis there is no charitable institution more worthy of support and encouragement than the London Hospital. Situated as it is in the heart of the most densely populated as well as the poorest parts in London, it is more in need, perhaps, than any other of funds. other of funds. Its position enables it to benefit immediately those who are most in want of help, and consequently it has at times been obliged to exceed its income, and to depend upon the benevolent to carry out its noble work. In this it has been eminently successful, as may be gathered from the fact that since the opening of the hospital, in 1740, several millions of patients have received help and relief; but the enormous increase of the population of the district has rendered the utmost exertion on the part of those who have had the management of the hospital necessary to keep pace

with the requirements of the time, and the history of the various additions which have been made to it from time to time, so as to enlarge its sphere of usefulness to the utmost, has been the history of one long struggle.

When first built, the hospital, like St. George's, stood quite in the fields, and the patients looked out of their windows upon a calm scene of sylvan beauty, which has been gradually transformed into closely packed bricks and mortar.

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