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ment, and Heaven only knows which way the Babus were pointing their guns, when suddenly we came on the tiger. There it lay on its right side straight ahead of us-breathing stertorously, and we pulled up an elephant's length away amid great gabble from the mahouts and the Babus and the sub-inspector. Where was it hit? Was it shamming? The Babus were for giving it a broadside. The sub-inspector desired target-practice from a distance. Only the chuprassie, -a small and faithful soulwished to get down and kick it. His Sahib had shot it. Therefore it must be dead, or very badly wounded. If by any chance it turned upon him, his Sahib would give it one more bullet. The skin must not be spoilt. The Collector chose that the chuprassie should not risk being spoilt either, and the eager little man was hauled up by the sub-inspector just as he was slinging himself down by the elephant's tail. At that moment the tiger gave a choke and half-rose, but sank again; and at the sub-inspector's very earnest request the Collector put another bullet in its head. So a little later the great cat died, having killed and eaten many cattle in its time; and stretched out, lithe and massive, and suggesting even in its death its strong and incomparable vitality, it evoked my sentiment. There seemed a strange waste in the destruotion of a creature so full of life and beauty. One can rejoice in the death of a crocodile or a shark-such things are re

pulsive to man. The cat-tribe is not. Between us there is not the same cold-blooded element. The heat and fierceness of the tiger's is not so different from our own. I suppose St Francis could have said "Brother Shark," but a mere ordinary sinner could almost say "Brother Tiger."

Well, we sometimes go for our brothers heartily enough, and I have to confess that my humane sentiment did not amount to much, and was succeeded by that previous and much less humane feeling that I might with luck have shot it myself and hadn't. "I do think," I said reproachfully to the Collector, "that you need not have finished my first tiger with your first shot."

He also is a humane man, but he only grinned.

"Sorry," he said. "I wish you'd got it, of course. It's just as well it was dropped, though. A wounded tiger's a nuisance, especially when it comes roaring for your elephant."

"I daresay," I said grudgingly, for some experiences are worth having, and this would have been one.

Our elephant had been taken up to the tiger's body, and its waggling trunk, as it snuffed it from head to tail, proclaimed that the chuprassie might with safety descend. Already, as if by magic, the little wood was filled at a respectful distance with villagers, and as the chuprassie took his proud stance by the body, they crowded up jabbering till the glade was like a parrot-house. The bolder spirits smacked their

dead enemy, or dipped a finger in his blood, and the chuprassie watched with jealous eyes lest any one should try and steal a hair of its whiskers. These and the claws are 80 highly esteemed for charms that there is scarcely a Bengali who can refrain from abstracting them if he gets the chance. In this instance the whiskers were solemnly counted. I forget what they numbered, but I could see the chuprassie going over them again at intervals until the bullock-cart, which in some mysterious way was hauled up through the trees, arrived to take the body into camp to be skinned. The procession thereupon formed was a triumphant one, and must have numbered some hundreds, some on foot, some on the small ponies of the country. I particularly remember one aged man, in a bright mauve robe on a white pony, who hastily galloped up for the purpose of spitting at the dead tiger and saying, "Ho, ho, you thought you were a great tiger that could frighten us. But you nothing but ఒ weak little jackal-how could you kill a Cow?"


Unfortunately our time was limited. These are not days when the official can take a week off as he pleases for the hunting of tiger, and we had to move on that same afternoon. But the Collector said that he would return some day to that part of his district, and that meantime the subinspector had better keep a record of the tiger's movements, and also of the movements of dacoits, some of whom it would be well for him to catch.

About a month later, when we were back in the station, a young police superintendent -a Scotsman-came round to the bungalow. He too had been visiting the same outpost in the course of his duties two days before-that is to say, rather more than three weeks after the tiger was shot. soon, he said, as he rode up, the sub-inspector came bustling out with smiles upon his face, and in answer to the question what report he had to make, said delightedly


"Sir, I have to report that the Collector has shot a tiger." "And are what about the dacoits ? demanded that official.

This was a figure of speech, of course, for it measured exactly eight foot eleven, which is medium for a tiger. Certainly it was not the eight-foot-high creature, bigger than a horse, which the sub-inspector had promised us. That one, he now vowed, was still at large, and would make even better hunting for his Honour, if his Honour would only wait and go after

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"Well, he's looking for them. But he's so pleased about the tiger still, and thinks you are, that they've rather taken a second place."

"I'll make him think," said the Collector grimly, and the young policeman winked at me.

"Shows how jolly incorruptible we have to be out here," he said. "The price of Empire what?"

R. E. V.


but this dissatisfaction is not discomfort. Mr Balfour is more content than most people to live in a state of suspended judgment.

MR BALFOUR's versatility satisfaction in current doctrine, leaves his admirers panting far behind. After nine consecutive months of Parliament, months congested with technical discussion and enlivened with personalities, he has the mental vigour to go down to Oxford and discourse for an hour or more on a highly intricate point in æsthetics. The Romanes Lecture is usually a carefully composed essay read before the most critical of audiences: Mr Balfour, with cheerful audacity, chose to make it a kind of thinking aloud. He expounded the difficulties in the way of any theory of criticism, the hiatus in our conceptions of art and beauty. It was a practical discourse, for he left abstract speculation severely alone, and asked only for a rational account of common artistic appreciation and ordinary critical practice. We understand Mr Balfour's choice of a subject. To a mind a little bored with the emphatic platitudes of politics philosophic doubt is a true relaxation. The sphere of art is far distant from the sphere of increment value and super-taxes, and after so many dusty certainties a mistier landscape is welcome. Besides, to Mr Balfour, there is always pleasure in discrediting pretentious dogmas. The fact of artistic beauty is as clear as day, but he will have none of the cruder theories about it. He tells us he can find no

Most of his difficulties are familiar ones. The first task of good critics is "to sweep away the rubbish of their critical predecessors." In most branches of human knowledge there is an inherited body of truth on which new workers can build, but in criticism each generation has to lay the foundation anew. If we make up a body of rules from the practice of our predecessors, we will find most of them speedily out of date. Art, the subjectmatter of criticism, is always altering its modes and content, and it will wither if restrained by the dead hand of the past. Aristotle furnishes a suggestive instance. The 'Poetics is probably the most brilliant critical work in existence, but three-fourths of the 'Poetics' has no modern application. Aristotle got his rules by generalising from the literary practice of his age, and since he included Polygnotus and Agathon among his authorities, as well as Eschylus and Sophocles, he was bound to lay down many dogmas which were not only partial in their application, but had no bearing at all upon the essential excellence of art. We can see throughout the history of criticism a tendency to a kind of

artistic scholasticism a tendency to prescribe rules which have no general validity. The doctrine of the "Unities" is a classic instance. It was & generalisation from certain good dramas, but it was not of the essence of all drama. We may conclude, then, that dogmas based on former practice will not give us much critical support.

Nor is it any use to bring in rules from some other province, such as religion or ethios. It is not criticism to complain that a novel "has not enough of the Gospel in it," or that a play preaches an awkward political moral. A work must be judged by the canons of its own province, and if we find difficulty in grasping these canons it will not help matters to import others from a very different sphere. It may be perfectly right to apply political, moral, religious, and historical criticism to a work of art; but let us always remember that it will not be artistic criticism. We can comment


the accuracy of Shakespeare's history, the political value of 'Les Miserables,' the ethical significance of "Don Juan," and our comments may be legitimate for the purpose of history, morals, and politics. But they have no direct bearing for the purpose of art.

Supposing, however, we limit ourselves strictly to æsthetic criticism, and declare that the sole criterion of value is "the feeling of the beautiful aroused by a work of art," Mr Balfour asks, "Whose feelings?" Obviously those of the mass are

no guide, for the mass cares very little about the art of the past, and is apt to prefer in the art of the present that which is blatantly non-artistio. If we are to go by the feelings of the artist himself we shall find that in all ages he is apt to set too high to set too high a value on technical merits, such as the skill in handling a difficult medium. He judges too much from the standpoint of the craftsman. What of "the feelings of men of trained sensibility"? No doubt from such men we shall get a tolerably accurate judgment of past work, for "the great heart of the world is just," and there is a real consensus of opinion on what has stood the test of years. But for contemporary art we find that the ranks of culture are not so serried as they seem to be. We know that Sir Walter Scott thought that one of his best songs was much inferior to those of Joanna Baillie; that Ruskin put the oleographic landscapes of the late Mr William Black on a level with his own; that an eminent Quarterly' reviewer considered that the unreadable epics of Dean Milman were "assured of whatever immortality the English language can bestow." We shall get no absolute rule from oultivated judgments. Besides, there is this difficulty. What appeals with tremendous force to the men of one epoch will have little effect upon those of another, since the technique of the art may have developed, and the faculty of appreciation become in consequence

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more sophisticated. Mr Balfour illustrates this from the famous case of Greek music. We know that harmony and part-writing among the Greeks were rudimentary. Yet

"I do not believe any impartial person can read the views entertained by Greek critics, Greek philosophers, poets, or anybody else with regard to the impression which music produced upon them, and not feel that the music produced upon them relatively as powerful aesthetic impressions-I believe I am putting it very mildly as it produces under

modern conditions."

If we make cultivated judgment our criterion, we shall have to revise our whole scheme of values and put the Greek lute-player_on a level with Beethoven. But we can not make cultivated sensibility a criterion, for another reason which Mr Balfour discussed at length. The more cultivated a man is the more he looks at technique, the more his enjoyment has a scientific element in it. He admires the skill of it all, the way in which the game is played under selfimposed limitations. "As discrimination grows there is no evidence that sensibility grows with it; indeed, I think there are cases in which the increase of powers of discrimination is accompanied by a waning of æsthetic sensibility." The criterion of enjoyment, therefore, will be apt to fail the critic as he advances in what we ordinarily call critical


But is there no standard of artistic value, independent of the individual critic, which he

can master and apply? This question carries us into the hazy dominion of aesthetic theory. We have had a host of philosophers, from Aristotle Hegel, who have developed a philosophy of art. Mr Balfour thinks that most of them-the Idealists in particular-have thrown upon æsthetic a metaphysical burden which it is impossible for it to bear. "I don't at all feel that I am assisted further by the idea that aesthetic is the meetingpoint of reason and understanding, or is a sensible expression of the Idea, or is the expression of an unconscious will.” We cordially agree. Whatever the merit of this or that philosophical explanation of the place of the aesthetic feelings in the scheme of the universe, it gives us no help in actual critical practice. Many eminent men have attempted to deduce

partly from a historioal survey of art and partly from philosophical theory-a set of rules which they claim to represent an "objective standard" in art. Taine was the founder of the school, but if the reader will consult its extreme development in the works of the late M. Hennequin, who constructed a kind of mathematical calculus for artistic values, we believe he will not be impressed with its success. It is only a more elaborate form of the attempt we have already rejected, to make up a body of rules from the work of the past.

Things seem to be in a bad way with criticism, and it looks as if we should be "handed over to a kind of anarchy of

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