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encouraging sign if this spirit would manifest itself in the student body in an increased feeling of individual responsibility. So the first plea of the TUFTONIAN, as it welcomes back those to whom our little world of struggle and achievement is a familiar one and extends a greeting hand to those who approach the spot for the first time, is for a better realization of some of the responsibilities of the members of a little community like ours. Progress of any sort is alone possible where the individual realizes the duties which are his in the communal life. When the responsibility of undertakings for the common good falls upon the shoulders of a few men, nothing worthy can be achieved. The TUFTONIAN is not making a plea in its own behalf, for it has received better treatment than the most of the student interests. An increased feeling of responsibility for our welfare would indeed be encouraging, but for this in particular we shall not plead. Our demand is a general one, – that Tufts students realize more keenly the importance of combined effort in the encouragement and financial support of the athletic interests of the college, that they see the necessity of contributing their small share to the support of the reading-room, that they view in the light of privileges any opportunities to aid by their personal attention and encouragement any interest which is for the common good of the study body. Our plea is not an unreasonable one. Every man who is allied with the college is benefited by the student organizations and ought, therefore, from a sense of justice to his fellows, to do his share toward supporting them. Our community is a small one, but a proper individual support of athletics, the reading-room, and kindred interests would produce results worthy of the progressive institution which Tufts College has shown herself to be.
Much inquiry is heard regarding the disposition made by the trustees of the petition signed by many of the upper classmen last year requesting that the amount of the dues of the athletic association be added to the term bills of all the students in the college. Those who are afraid that they will be called upon to pay twice for the support of athletics are assured that the charge will not be made this year on the term bills. As it was impossible upon so short a notice to make the payment obligatory upon every member of the college, it was decided best to continue the old method for another year.
Athletics at Tufts are thus dependent for a time longer upon voluntary contributions of the students, and it becomes necessary to make a final appeal for a generous support. And yet it ought not to be necessary to more than point out to the students the urgent need of contributing to the support of our athletics. No argument is needed to convince any sensible man that he is benefited indirectly by the maintenance of winning ball teams in the college. It ought to be equally evident that such teams cannot be supported without the acitve co-operation of every man. The new athletic field is ready for use, and the manager of the football team has arranged for some good games to be played at the hill this year. He will be seriously handicapped in his plans if the membership of the athletic association is not a large one. Let every man remember that besides contributing to the support of the college athletics he is, by paying his five dollars to the association, entitled to free admission to all base-ball and foot-ball games on the Hill and to the use of the tennis courts. The appeals of the collectors ought to meet with a cheerful response.
A professor was heard to remark to a student returning after the summer vacation that one who in times past had been familiar with the Hill and its buildings almost needed a guide book this fall, to explain the numerous additions and improvements that have been accomplished at College Hill during the summer months. There certainly have been important changes in the appearance of the grounds. The Commons Hall, with its spacious dining-hall, its post office and bookstore, has been completed. Metcalf Hall, the new home for ladies, a building attractive in appearance and well suited to its object, has been finished. The new Chemical building, constructed as a temporary arrangement, to be used until a substantial laboratory can be built, is almost finished, as is also the west wing of the Barnum Museum. Of the Hill the delightful residence of Professor Anthony and the commodious society houses of Delta Upsilon and Heth Aleph Resh deserve to be mentioned, for they contribute not a little to the attractive appearance of our college community. On the whole the summer has been marked by an unusually large number of improvements which
will be permanent, and some of which will stand for years as a monument to the generosity of benefactors and to the progressive spirit of the college.
It is a pleasure to call the attention of TUFTONIAN readers to the contents of our advertising columns. It is seldom that a college paper can boast of an advertising patronage of more real merit than that represented in the TUFTONIAN this year. The aim of the management has been to solicit the favor of only such firms as could be without hesitation recommended to the students of the college as reliable houses of established reputation. We are therefore pleased to be able to call the attention of our readers to the advertising pages, and to suggest that where it is possible the houses represented in our columns should receive the generous patronage of the students and alumni of Tufts College.
In the subject of this sketch we have a man whose characteristics James
widely differ from the majority of other writers of this time. Peculiarly Whitcomb original, with a fund of rich humor as well as of the more serious
element common to all writers; with a never-ending and constantlyRiley.
deepening appreciation of nature, men, and all associations connected
therewith; with a keen faculty for character-reading; and with a fondness for the simpler -- and what appears to be the more popular — form of verse and story, James Whitcomb Riley is marked among the rising young writers of the day. Whether his genius is sufficient to win him the title of « The American Burns” is yet an open question ; whether his works will survive the present generation or not remains to be seen. Certainly his works prove very readable, and, published as they are in popular form, attract more or less attention from the mass of people.
Perhaps the chief characteristic of Riley's poems is their Rileyism. By this is meant, they are peculiarly his own. He borrows wonderfully little, and shows very little evidence of wide acquaintance with other writers; and besides this, the peculiarities of his verse are exhibited in a manner which is bound to excite in most cases an approving interest.
His verse is divisible into ordinary and dialect verse. The first might be characterized by the expression, “ delicate and sweet.” So dainty in thought, and so pretty and delicate in expression, the ordinary verse holds the reader in rapt attention, forcing him to eagerly read on to see if the next thought be daintier or sweeter than the preceding. This is true of most of his ordinary verse. The term “ beautiful” could hardly be so applicably applied to this, as the words “ pretty," or “sweet.” This might be illustrated by a verse from “The Brook Song.”
“ Little brook, sing to me :
Sing about a bumble-bee
Because he wet the film
Of his wings, and had to swim,
Also by a verse from “ The South Wind and The Sun.”
" And the sun had on a crown
Wrought of gilded thistle-down,
And a raveled-rainbow gown ;
Tossed and lost upon the air,
Than any anywhere."
His dialect verse might be called rollickingly good-natured. Dealing with simple topics of ordinary Hoosier life, using its colloquialisms and oddities as freely as we might imagine the Hoosier himself to use them, Riley proves himself a skilled workman with the tools with which he works. His poems in dialect are unusually spicy and pithy. The thoughts are finely arranged. He never anticipates, but presenting gradually more and more of his purpose, he suddenly launches out the point of the whole poem.
This might well be illustrated by a quotation from “ Nothin' to Say.”
Twenty year! and as good a gyrl as parent ever found !
This is a happy way of handling dialect verse, and while he does not confine himself to this method, he uses it to some extent. In this respect he resembles Burns, and doubtless his aptitude in handling dialect, being somewhat analogous, has perhaps justly won for him the title before alluded to, « The American Burns.”
In both forms of verse, ordinary and dialect, Riley is very melodious. Fine alliteration, a musical swing, a clearness and daintiness of expression which is not evident in other writers of to-day, is present here. Indeed, because of its “jingle,” much of his best verse would not commend itself to the careful reader. And some of his verse, which contains the most serious thought, is the most jingling in sound. This seems to be a fault of his.
This seems to be a fault of his. He is apparently borne along on the current of his thought as a boat is borne along the current of a river; and he writes both serious and funny thought with the same “lilting melody.” The verses seem, to some extent, to be cast in the same mould, and because of this, the careful reader, while pleased by the fine thoughts, becomes easily wearied by the monotonous swing.
Riley's range of subjects varies to considerable extent. They seem to be mainly three : on nature, in the treatment of which he is especially good; on pathetic stories ; and on rollicking fireside topics. In the latter, he deals with the simplest and most ordinary occurrences or experiences, and proves himself a master workman. His
sketches are intended in the main to be humorous, treating of ordinary events of farm or town life with a vividness of detail and ease of style. Interesting and engaging, one feels it a pleasant amusement to read from the sketches, but fails to grasp anything of permanent value. These are manifestly inferior to his verse.
There is one quality in the works of Riley which has not yet been mentioned, and which renders the verse of more interest. To explain : when you open an old locker which has for years remained untouched, an aroma of lavender or rosemary leaves often rises to greet you. It is refreshing. But besides that, it carries you back, in mind, to the time when the leaves were placed there, and the associations which are brought up are often delightful to reflect upon. Just so it seems to be with
many of Riley's poems. There is an aroma rises to greet you and refresh you, and with it come up old associations and events which are simply delightful. The aroma carries one back to days of old, to the years when he was a youth, and its delight makes him in memory live over his boyhood again. The thoughts may be old, but all they contain, and all that accompanies them, render them of value, as was the sweet odor from the old locker. The spirit of much of Riley's verse carries one back to the freedom and pleasure of boyhood, one of the happiest times in life, and in dreams one finds solace from the cares of this work-a-day world.
Considering the works of Riley as a whole, it is not yet evident whether he will be ranked among the masters of verse-writing. That his verse is very popular to-day is quite evident, though but comparatively few of his seven or eight small volumes of verse and story are sold.
More than this, only a small number of his many poems are known or liked by the people. The difficulty seems to lie in the fact that he allows his lighter self to outweigh' his heavier self — his lighter thought to ponderate his more serious thought. Some of his works are of too fighty a nature to be of interest for more than one reading, though a poem like “Little Orphant Annie, because of its peculiar interest to children, will live long. Still, Riley is yet a young man, being but forty-two, and with the many years he is likely to live, he can show that his work will assume a more serious aspect, will be of more literary value, and consequently more lasting.
C. H. W.
Cause of War The present war between Japan and China about the Corean
matter is of great interest to the world. To discuss the matter between Japan
intelligently it is necessary to learn something of the past relations
of the countries involved. and China. Empress Jin-Ko, fourteenth dynasty of Japan, conquered Corea
and established the dominion, but about twenty-seventh dynasty gave up her domain, having found that the income from Corea did not pay the expense of the outpost of troops to keep the Corea in order. Though Corea got out of the Japanese yoke, yet, fearing Chinese invasion, she made an alliance with her and paid occasionally her tribute to China. Thus Corea remained until sixty years ago, administering her own affairs herself.
In 1884 ten or more attachees of the Japanese legation were killed in Seoul, the capitol of Corea, by a mob of natives, whereupon Japan sent troops to protect her interests.
China, fearing lest Japan might gain a foot-hold in Corea, likewise sent troops and prevented Japan from amicably settling the difficulty. Japan then demanded of China that if she claimed Corea as under her protection she should become responsible for the acts of the people of Corea.
China refused to become responsible and suggested, as a compromise, that both the Japanese and Chinese troops be withdrawn. This was agreed to by Japan, and the treaty Tien-Tsin resulted, promising that neither country would send any troops to Corea without consent of the other. Accordingly, the troops of both countries were withdrawn, but the very next day Chinese soldiers to the number of about two hundred returned to Seoul, disguised as merchants, while Japan kept only a few policemen to guard the embassy and control the Japanese that resided in Corea. China also had police to the number of one hundred to protect and guard her own people. This conduct on the part of China was more extraordinary considering that there were only twenty-five hundred Chinese in Corea and about ten thousand Japanese. This state of affairs has existed from 1884 to the present year, hindering Japanese interests in commerce and politics in various ways.
The government of Corea is monarchial in form. The last king was king in name only. The actual power was in the hands of his maternal uncle, the prime minister; he was commander of the army and appointed the governors of the eight provinces into which Corea is divided. Almost all of these governors were near kinsmen of the prime minister. They ruled with great severity and cruelty. They put to death without trial, levied taxes, confiscated property, and were, in short, almost absolute monarchs.
The middle and intelligent classes of the nation have long been dissatisfied with their condition, and have sought to have reforms instituted in the government and the officers removed; and so in early spring of the present year these rebels, or “reformers," as they would be called in this country, attacked the government troops and defeated them and marched within fifty miles of the capitol. Yuen, the Chinese embassy to Corea, suggested asking China for aid. China immediately sent troops, without regard to the provisions of the treaty of 1884, and simply informed Japan that she sent her troops to Corea Japan then sent eight thousand troops and took possession of the capitol. China then suggested again that both countries withdraw their troops as they did in 1884. Japan refused to do this and asked China to join with her in settling the Corean difficulty. China refused and continued to send more troops. Japan then felt that an amicable settlement of the trouble was impossible and that China wanted to control Corea.
The subsequent events, the sinking of the transport carrying Chinese troops, the formal declaration of war, and the progress of the reformation of the Corean government are matters of common knowledge.
TWILIGHT AT MT. DESERT.
In the dusk the pale light glimmers
On the mountain top so high,
At the rosy western sky;
And the cooling evening air,
Knitting up the sleeve of care.
In accordance with the wishes of the late James Russell of Arlington,
the annual lecture bearing his name was delivered on the first Sunday Lecture. of the college year, before the student body.
The large audience was particularly favored this year in the selection of a loyal son of Tufts as the lecturer, the Rev. T. E. Busfield, '80, of Utica, New York, a minister of the Baptist denomination. His subject, “ The Influence of Christian Faith and Belief in the Formation of the Character of the Good Man and the Good Citizen,” he declared to be especially appropriate to the needs of young men just entering college, and deserving of their most thoughtful consideration.
“ There is nothing more useful and lasting a college man can acquire ; nothing the community more needs, and demands that he should acquire, than character.” He spoke of physical and mental attainments as admirable, but " for worth, real and continuing, goodness transcends physical vigor and mental culture, for goodness is the strongest strength and the greatest greatness.
“Wealth and civic honors may make their possessors dangerous plutocrats like Jay Gould, or public nuisances like Altgelt, but the man of character has something of the eternal, and the immutable, and the ever beneficial, for the character is God-like and divine. Beauty fades; bodily vigor perishes; intellectual power may be controlled by an evil will, and work only harm; riches, if they take not wings and Ay away, may corrupt those that have them ; but character is unfading, and abiding, and, as in God's eternal sunshine there is light, and heat, and the chemistry of life, so character enlightens, and warms, and vivifies, and that unceasingly. To beauty and strength and to mind and wealth there must be added the grace which comes from Christus Salvator.”
“We must pronounce every man good who, in singleness of purpose, has the dominant desire to be right with God and engaged in his service.
“ As the ripest scholars are ever inviting the students on the lower slopes upward to their own vantage ground, where all that is now known may be perceived and enjoyed, so the good man elevates the standard of living for all other and less good men to follow, and thus from the good man continually flow rich blessings into the life of others.
“Character is of superlative value, and it is character, and not intellectual ability or financial success, that makes the good man. To advance a step further, it is the good man that makes the good citizen.
“Men are set in families, and families in communities, and the aggregation of communities is the state.
Every man therefore exerts an influence on the commonwealth. This important truth is frequently forgotten, and it is to this forgetfulness that we must ascribe a large number of social ills.