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“The islands,” said he, “that lie so fresh and green bcfóre thee, are the mansions of good mén after deàth, who, according to the degrée and kinds of virtue in which they excélled, are distributed among these several islands, which abound with pleasures suitable to the relishes and perfections of those who are settled in them; every ísland is a paradise! accommodated to its respective inhàbitants. Are not thèse, O Mirza, habitations worth conténding for? Does Life appear miserable, that gives thee opportunities of earning such a reward? Is Death to be feared, that will convey thee to so happy an existence? Think not man was made in váin, who has such an eternity resèrved for him."
I gazed with inexpressible pleasure' on these happy islands. At léngth, said I: "Show me now, I beseech thee, the sècrets that lie hid under those dark cloúds which cover the ócean' on the òther side of the rock of adamant.” The Genius making me no ánswer, I turned aboút' to address myself to him a sècond time, but I found that he had lèft me. I then turned again to the vision' which I had been so lòng contemplating; but instead of the rolling tide, the arched bridge, and the happy íslands, I saw nothing but the long hollow valley of Bagdad, with òxen, sheep, and cámels' grázing upon the sides of it.
THE VOICE AND PEN.
Oh! the orator's Voice is a mighty power
Than the murderous cannon's roar.
And brightens the captive's den?
"Tis the fearless Voice and the Pen of PowerHurrah! for the Voice and Pen!
Hurrah! for the Voice and Pen!
The tyrant knaves who deny our rights,
And the cowards who blanch with fear,
Your hills are ours; with our forts and towers
Though your horsemen stand with their bridles in hand, And your sentinels walk around
Though your matches flare in the midnight air,
And your brazen trumpets sound;
Oh! the orator's tongue shall be heard among
And they'll quickly say, "Why should we slay
When the Lord created the earth and sea,
The Godhead spoke, and the universe woke—
Let a word be flung from the orator's tongue,
And the chains accursed asunder burst,
Oh! these are the swords with which we fight,
Which no tyrant hand will dare to brand
Which time cannot dim or rust!
When these we bore, we triumphed before-
And the world will say, "No power can stay
Hurrah! for the Voice and Pen!
D. F. M'CARTHY.
EFFECTS OF MACHINERY.
FOUR hundred years ago, all the books in use were written with pen and ink, and the labour of making a book was very great indeed. Books were also very expensive, for the writers of them—scribes, as they were called—were scarce, as so few persons could write, and the large amount of time taken up in writing had to be well paid for. But when the art of printing was invented, it was found that a man with a printing press and types, could produce hundreds of times as many books with his machinery, as could the scribe with his pen. As the cost of a printer's labour was no more than the cost of the same amount of a scribe's labour, and the printer's labour was so much more productive, printed books could be sold much cheaper than those that were written. For if a scribe could write one book in a week, a printer could print at least five hundred of them, with the same amount of labour, and could, therefore, sell each of them for very much less. Accordingly, when books began to be printed, so great was the difference between the costs of production by writing and by printing, that the scribes stood no chance of living, and very soon lost all their work. The material also was made more productive by the use of machinery for printing. The same quantity of paper that made only one written book, was enough to make many printed books, so that there was a saving of materials as well as a saving of labour. The cost of producing books having been so much reduced by the use of printing machinery, owing to their taking so much less material and labour to make them, their price was gradually reduced; and now a better Bible can be bought for a shilling, than could at one time be bought for fifty pounds.
In the manufacture of cotton goods also, the use of machinery has produced wonderful differences in price, because it has so much lessened the cost of production. Seventy years ago, cotton-spinners, with their machines, spun fine cotton threads that could not have been spun at all by hand, and which then sold at twenty guineas a pound. Since that time, the use of better machines has so much
decreased the cost of producing these fine threads-or yarns, as they are called-that the same quality of yarn can now be sold at fifteen shillings a pound.
Before the stocking loom was invented, a good pair of stockings cost five shillings, because of the amount of labour required to make them; by the same amount of labour with the stocking loom, a woman can make so many pairs, that each pair can be sold for a shilling. Within the last few years, farmers have begun to use reaping and thrashing machines, because they find that, after adding together the cost of the machines, and the cost of the labour required to work them, it costs much less to reap and thrash the wheat by these machines than to do it by the hand.
A sewing machine has lately been invented, by which a woman can do twenty times as much work as with her needle; it has made the labour of sewing twenty times as productive as before. This being the case, the cost of the labour of sewing with it, is only one-twentieth of the cost of the labour of sewing with the needle; and even after adding the greater cost of the machine, the cost of producing goods by the sewing machine is so much less than the cost of the same goods sewn with the needle, that they can be sewn at a much lower price. When more tailors, shirt, shoe, and dress makers, make use of these machines, we shall get clothes cheaper than we now do.
Now it is quite plain that all consumers benefit by the use of machinery, as they get commodities at a lower price in consequence. The only persons who are thought to lose by the use of machinery, are the work people, some of whom are sometimes thrown out of work by the use of a new machine, which requires fewer persons to attend it. But even these lose for a time only, because the increased demand for the cheapened articles, always in the end, gives employment to a larger number of people than were employed before the machine was used. This has clearly been the case with the use of machinery for printing. When this was first used, all the scribes lost their employment, but before long there was more than enough employment for them at
the printing presses, because of the greatly increased demand for books. Within a very few years, there were twenty times as many printers employed, as there once were scribes; and there can be no doubt but that there are now hundreds of times as many persons employed in producing books, as there would be if books were written. Ninety years ago, a cotton-spinning machine was invented that enabled one man to do the work of twenty, and so threatened to turn out of work nineteen out of every twenty hand-spinners. This caused them to be alarmed, to cry out against the use of these machines, and even to go about the country breaking them up, as they were thought to be the greatest enemies to the spinners. And so for a time they were, but it was not long before the decrease in price, that followed the use of this machine, so greatly increased the demand for cotton yarns, that there were many more persons wanted to attend to the new machines, than were before wanted to work the spinning-wheels. So much has the demand continued to increase, that for every cotton-spinner at work ninety years ago, there are now a hundred; yet people said that the use of machinery would ruin the work people. Twenty years ago, when passenger railways were coming into use, there was just as great an outcry against them, it was said that they would ruin all the people who owned coaches and coach horses, as they would all be useless. But that was soon found to be a mistake, and now it is well known that there are many more horses and coaches of different kinds employed in taking people to railway stations, than were employed before the railways were made, to say nothing of the numbers of people employed on railways. Altogether it may safely be said, that for every person employed in carrying people and goods, just before railways were made, there are now fifty employed.
Thus we have seen that the use of machinery, by reducing the cost of producing commodities, benefits all. It benefits the consumers, by enabling them to buy at lower prices; and it benefits the producers, by giving them more employment. As the producers are consumers also, it benefits them in two ways.