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were also rung the next day, but she could not say how many times; and sometimes they had been rung continually both on Sundays and week-days. Chimes were also rung on the Sundays. The small bell was rung at 5 in the morning, and then a larger bell was rung at \ to 7. At 7£ the small bell was rung again, and then the large bell rung at 1 to 9. The effect of this continued ringing was to cause such a confusion and noise in her master's house that they did not know what they were about; and they could not hear when the house-bells were rung. The plaintiff is an elderly gentleman; and his family consists of a daughter, two sons, and three grandchildren. The daughter is in ill health, and she has been removed to Uxbridge. The largest bell was the worst of all; it made a very dreadful sound.
Many witnesses gave evidence to the effect that the bells are generally regarded as a local nuisance; and Mr. Gadsden, of the firm of Musgrove and Gadsden, gave his professional opinion that the value of the plaintiff's house would be depreciated by the bells, on a new letting, from the present rent of 130*. a year to the reduced rent of 80/. a year.
Mr. Bramwell said, that the religious association of which the defendant was the superior, was established for the purposes of beneficence, not of committing a nuisance. He denied on their behalf any desire to annoy their neighbours, or to arrogate to themselves any rights which the law did not accord to them. They denied that there had been any nuisance created, or that there had been any infringement of the law. No British jury would say
that those acts which were believed to be necessary by the defendants for properly and decorously carrying out the ceremonials of their religion amounted to a nuisance. The question which they had to decide was, whether the existence of a nuisance had been proved? He should submit with great confidence that it had not. The mere fact of ringing a bell, or a peal of bells, once a day, or several times a day, if they pleased, was not enough to constitute a nuisance. It might be very annoying to a person of nervous temperament, but that did not constitute a nuisance in the eye of the law. This was the very first occasion he had ever heard of where the bells of a church were sought to be made out a nuisance. Ever since the establishment of Christianity bells had been rung in their churches; and he could not help saying that it appeared to him a very extraordinary proceeding to be taken in the nineteenth century, to attempt to show that the ringing of church bells was a nuisance. He feared that these proceedings had arisen out of the recent excitement from the acts of the Pope. He did not wish to throw any blame upon the plaintiff for the proceedings he had taken. He had no doubt that he was perfectly sincere; but he was fearful that religious feelings had been the instigation of the present action, and that if those bells had not belonged to a Roman Catholic place of worship the action would never have been heard of.
The Chief Justice said that the real questions at issue between the parties were very short and simple. The case was one of very great importance, and, speaking for himself, he would say that he deeply regretted it had ever been brought into court, because it appeared to him to involve matters of a character that ought never to be introduced into a court of justice. He felt assured, however, that the jury would perform their duty apart from all religious feelings, and that they would not allow any prejudice to prevail so as to induce them to return a verdict that was not warranted by the facts of the case. He would now tell them what, in his opinion, the law was with regard to the question before them. First, with regard to the right of using bells at all. By the common law, churches of every denomination had a full right to use bells, and it was a vulgar error to suppose that there was any distinction at the present time in this respect. At the same time, those bells might undoubtedly be made use of in such a manner as to create a nuisance, and in that case a Protestant church and a I Roman Catholic one were equally liable. The mere fact of ringing bells so many times in the day did not in itself constitute a nuisance; the nuisance must be of an enduring and substantial character, not such as would give offence and annoyance to a nervous mind, but which was calculated to cause permanent inconvenience and disturbance to men of ordinary mind and nerve. The jury would say whether the evidence satisfied them of this in the present case; but he could not help observing that, with regard to the first bell that was put up in 1848, he hardly thought that the ringing it in the way described ought to be considered to amount to a nuisance. The learned Judge then proceeded to comment upon the material parts of the evidence.
The jury were in deliberation about two hours, when they gave a verdict for the plaintiff—damages, 40s.
Notwithstanding this decision, the defendants renewed the nuisance, and the plaintiff applied to the Court of Chancery. The Redemptorist Fathers attempted to defeat the motion, by alleging that the nuisance, if it was one, was a public nuisance, and in that case, the prosecutor must be the Attorney General, not the person injured; and that the nuisance was not proved. However, ViceChancellor Kindersley overruled both objections, and granted an injunction.
14. Dreadful Earthquakes In Italy.—The southern Neapolitan territory has been shaken by an earthquake which has dealt destruction over the Italian peninsula from Point Cam pan ell a below the Bay of Naples, along the whole range of the Apennines, through the upper portion of the Basilicata and the whole length of the Terra di Bari on the Adriatic coast. At Sorrento, on the western extremity of the line of disaster, several houses were destroyed; at the eastern extremity, the town of Bari is said to be "completely destroyed." "All the houses had been either reduced to ruins or swallowed up, with the loss of hundreds of lives. But in the upper Basilicata, which is in the centre of the perturbed district, the catastrophe has been immense in extent, and terrible in degree." A letter from Naples, dated the 24th of August, says :—
"I have received several details relative to the dreadful disaster which occurred on the 14th instant in the province of Basilicata, in this kingdom, and about 100 miles from the capital. A list of more than 50 villages is given in which greater or less damage was done; in more than one place the principal buildings having been destroyed, and in all several lives having been lost amidst the ruins of fallen houses. The greatest sufferer, however, was the town of Melfi, a place containing 10,000 inhabitants: three-quarters of the city are a mass of ruins; the cathedral, six churches, five monastic establishments, the archbishop's palace, the college, the municipality, the barracks, and the police-station, having been all levelled to the ground. The known deaths amount already to 700, besides 200 wounded, among whom the principal families count victims. I have not time this morning to give all the minute details, but it is sufficient to say that a rich and populous district has been completely destroyed, and the loss of life has been immense. It does not appear that the ground opened, but all the injury was done by the houses falling from the repeated shocks of the earthquake, the rapidity of which was such that the persons in the houses and passing in the streets had not time to escape."
A medical officer, dispatched by the Neapolitan Government to the scene of the earthquake in the upper Basilicata, says:—
"The village of Bavile has actually disappeared. I found all about this district large fissures, partly filled up with houses, A 'man who escaped told me it appeared to him that for a minute he was being tossed about in the air; the earth appeared, as it were, endowed with a breathing power, md then came a different move
int—a shaking to and fro. Here
some military had arrived to excavate. There was a strong stench of decomposing bodies. This place was really deserted by the inhabitants, at least I saw very few. How shall I give you an idea of what was once the town of Melfi? The cathedral is down, as are the college, the churches, the military depot, and 163 houses—98 are in a falling state, and 180 pronounced as dangerous. The .military have arrived, and are working away. Our medical staff is by no means strong enough. More than 1000 bodies have already been dug up: I not need not add, all dead. The wounded are over 600, and present every variety of flesh-wound and fractures. Sixty-five boys of the College of Melfi are supposed to have perished. The calamity took place when most of the population were sleeping, as is the custom in Italy, after dinner.
"Up to this day (the 27th of August) the returns of dead bodies dug out of the ruins from all towns and villages is 857; but the excavations have only commenced."
16. Fire At Richmond. — Between the hours of 1 and 2 in the morning, the town of Richmond, in Surrey, was thrown into a state of the utmost alarm and confusion, in consequence of the sudden outbreak of a fire which did extensive
This disaster originated in the premises belonging to Mr. Andrews, a fancy bread and biscuit baker, situate in Upper Hill Street, being about half-way up the rise. The street at this part consists of shops; but immediately behind them, up the Vineyard, are two large chapels, adjoining each other, one of the Independents, the other of the Roman Catholics. The country engines were soon on the spot, and did what they could to extinguish the flames; but the fire speedily reached the premises of Mr. Luckett, a carver and gilder, and in a very short space of time his workshops presented a general blaze, and the flames, being wafted by a stiff breeze, were forced through the side windows of the Independent Chapel into the midst of the edifice. The moment the pews became ignited the flames travelled over the whole area, and finally penetrated the roof, when they rose so high in the air as to light up the country for miles. Mounted policemen were dispatched to London for assistance, and two brigade engines were sent; but before they could arrive, the premises of Mr. Andrews, Mr. Webster, and Mr. Luckett, and the Independent Chapel, were totally destroyed.
16. Shipwreck, Massacre, And Captivity. — The overland mail brings a distressing account of the wreck of the Larpent, of Liverpool, the massacre of a part of her crew, and the dreadful captivity of the survivors. The American opium clipper Antelope, on her passage to Shanghai, was lying becalmed off Formosa, on the 1st of May last, when she observed a boat with three men in her pulling towards her. Taking them for the ferocious pirates who infest that coast, she fired at them, when they hailed in English, and she took them on board: they were the sole survivors of the crew of the Larpent. This unfortunate vessel, which was of 614 tons burden, and had a crew of 31 men, sailed from Liverpool for Shanghai on the 18th of May, 1850. She passed Botel Tobago Xima, an island off Formosa, on the 12th of Sep
tember. Soon after she struck on a rock, and on the following day it was apparent she would founder. The officers and crew therefore took to the boats, intending to make for Hongkong, upwards of 400 miles distant. The captain landed in the quarter-boat on Formosa for the purpose of obtaining water; but his party wrere never more heard of, whether massacred or kept in captivity is unknown. At daylight on the 14th, the launch having rounded the extreme point of Formosa, the crew landed on a shelving beach, surrounded by bushes, intending, before proceeding any further, to do their best to repair the boat. About 8 A.m., almost without any previous warning, they found themselves in the midst of a deadly fire of matchlocks. Young Mr. Bland, a passenger, was observed to spring a great height into the air and fall flat on his face, dead; those who could swim immediately took to the water; whence the savages were seen, with long knives, stabbing those who were wounded, and immediately cutting off their heads, which, to the number of nineteen, were then thrown into a terrible heap. Blake and Hill, a boy, two of the survivors, escaped by swimming across a wide bight, and escaped to the mountains, where they remained until the 19th. Exhausted nature could hold out no longer; and at a time when Blake says the feelings of a cannibal had arisen in his breast, and he insanely thought of partaking of his comrade's blood rather than remain longer without food, they wandered into a field where some villagers were at work. From them they obtained a meal of rice and shelter; and were afterwards' made to work with the village labourers from daylight till dark —sometimes in boats, diving for large shell-fish, at others with hoes about the paddy-ground. Beris, the third survivor, and another, had landed at a different place, whence they tried to reach a junk, in which one of them, Harrison, succeeded, but was almost immediately shot and decapitated in sight of his comrade. Beris appears to have subsequently joined Blake and Hill; the latter of whom, being unable to do so much work as the others, was subjected to very severe treatment, and had been left sick at Shanghai. At the expiration of five months, the kind-hearted villagers sold them to some neighbours for six dollars apiece; the purchasers proved to be of a more friendly disposition than the original holders. When the Antelope approached the shore they got into a boat and rowed to her, having endured a captivity of upwards of seven months.
Loss Of H. M. S. Reynard.— By the same mail we learn the loss of Her Majesty's screw steam sloop the Reynard, Captain Cracroft, on the Prata Shoals.
The Reynard left Hongkong for England on the 28th of May, with orders to go in the first instance to the Prata Shoals, about 160 miles from Hongkong, and assist Her Majesty's brig Pilot in rescuing a part of the crew of the wrecked merchant-brig Velocipede. The Prata Shoals have been surveyed, but no accurate knowledge has been obtained of the strength and irregularity of the currents prevailing there. Early in the morning of the 31st of May, while the greatest vigilance was exeraud when, according to all
their different means of reckoning, it was supposed that they were at least 30 miles from the point of danger, the Reynard struck on the shoals. The sea was smooth, the water deep, and nothing gave the slightest indication of the proximity of danger. All endeavours to get the vessel off failed; and the wind getting up, with a heavy sea, she soon became bilged and a perfect wreck. A month's provisions, but no bread, were got into the boats, and the crew prepared a raft of the spars, gratings, &c. The vessel was now breaking to pieces, but the crew passed the night on board. On the following morning they were removed on to the raft; unfortunately it had caught a rock and would not rise, so that some of the men passed the night up to their middle in water, with nothing to eat but raw pork, a little water, and half a gill of rum apiece. On the 2nd of June the whole crew were landed in safety on the inhospitable island of Prata, where tents were erected, wells sunk, and every precautionary measure taken for the welfare of the men. In the meanwhile, the Pilot was in the offing, unable to render assistance on account of the reefs. Fortunately, after two days' sojourn on the island, the crew of the Reynard got on board her by means of the boats. The crew of the Velocipede were also rescued.
16. Execution Of The Cuban Invaders.—The following is the Spanish account of the execution of the 50 "pirates," part of General Lopez's expedition, who were captured in the boats. They were sent to the Havannah as pirates captured in flagrante delicto, and publicly executed without any form of trial.