Oceana: Or, England and Her Colonies

By James Anthony Froude | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XIII.

Alternative prospects of the Australian colonies--Theory of the value of colonies in the last century--Modern desire for union--Proposed schemes--Representation--Proposal for colonial Peers--Federal Parliament impossible--Organised emigration--Dangers of hasty measures--Distribution of honours--Advantages and disadvantages of party government in colonies--Last words on South Africa.

WE had now seen all that our limits of time would allow us of Australia and the Australians. New South Wales and Victoria are vast territories, and ours had been but a glimpse of a small part of them; but a stay indefinitely prolonged could have taught me no more than I already knew of the opinions of those who were guiding the destinies of Australia, and of the alternative possibilities of the future. If those colonies remain attached to the mother country, a great and prosperous destiny seems, in human probability, assured to them. If fate and official want of wisdom divides us asunder, they will also, I suppose, form eventually a great nation, or several nations, but they will have to pass through the fire of affliction. Trials await them of many kinds, as certain as the disorders of childhood, some made by fate, some by human wilfulness. Nations cannot mature, any more than each in. dividual of us, without having their school lessons drilled into them by painful processes. ἖νπάθειυαεU+096 + ̑ν is the law of human progress, from the growth of the schoolboy to the growth of the largest community. The Australians, being of English blood, will probably pass successfully through their various apprenticeships. It is possible, on the other hand, that they

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