Chapter 5: London
1837-1843. AETAT 31-38.
Life in London—Spiritual condition—English friends—The Carlyles—Lamennais and George Sand—Literary work—Decay of Young Italy—The Italian School at Hatton Garden—Appeal to working men.
Early in 1837 Mazzini and the Ruffinis came to London. The determining cause was the inability of the latter to bear the privations of a life of hiding. They travelled by slow diligence stages through France, the French government, which was only glad to get them out of Switzerland, giving them every facility for the journey. In London at all events they were free men, able to live under their own names and move where they liked, untroubled by the police. But the change from the snows and sunsets and silences of Switzerland to the squalor and noise of a back street in London added to Mazzini's desolation. In this "sunless and musicless island," with the dreary stretches of houses and the wearing din, he pined for the peace of the Alps, where nature had brought him an occasional respite from his heart-ache. "We have lost," he writes, "even the sky, which the veriest wretch on the Continent can look at"; and in time the desolate walls across the street worried him, till he would not go to the window. The one thing in London that appealed to him was the fog. "When you look up, the eye loses itself in a reddish, bell-shaped vault, which always gives me, I don't know why, an idea of the phosphorescent light of the Inferno. The whole city seems under a kind of spell, and reminds me of the Witches' Scene in Macbeth or the Brocksberg or the Witch of Endor. The passers-by look like ghosts,—one feels almost a ghost oneself." The half-glimpses of the buildings, harmonising with their sombre colouring, gave him a sense of mystery and indefiniteness, that redeemed London of "the positive and finite" of a Southern town, and responded to his growing faith in the poetic and unseen.
For a few weeks he lived at 24 Goodge Street, Tottenham Court Road, with the Ruffinis and two other exiles, who had helped him in the Marseilles days. In March the quintet moved to 9 George Street, near the Euston Road, where they suffered many things from the maid-of-all-work, who no doubt did much as she liked with the five inexperienced males, only two of whom could speak English at all well. Here they lived for three years, on the whole a very miserable household. Mazzini himself was "an angel of kindness and good-temper and enthusiasm," ever ready to sacrifice himself to others' whims and comforts. But the unhappy mystic was no cheerful companion, he was unpractical and dogmatic, probably sometimes peevish, half-lost in the empyrean of his ideals, beyond the ken or sympathy of the others. Agostino Ruffini's petty selfishness and ungovernable tongue were the source of frequent scenes, which one day brought Mazzini to tears, "tears which nothing else could have drawn from him," as he writes plaintively to Agostino's mother. At bottom young Ruffini recognized Mazzini's worth and devotedness, and swore himself on paper to keep his temper, with other salutary resolutions, to be read over three times a week; but he was quite incapable of reaching to Mazzini's mind, and he longed to enjoy himself in a freer life, where the gospel of duty was never heard. Giovanni was more equable, and knew Mazzini better, but he too had small belief in the gospel, and there was little except old associations and the common love of his mother to bind him to his transcendental friend. The general irresponsiveness at home bitterly hurt and saddened Mazzini. "I love no one and want to love no one," he writes of his English surroundings; and in his letters to his friends in Italy and Switzerland, he returns again and again to the lack of sympathy around him, as the heaviest trial of those unhappy days.
There was nothing to distract him from the sordidness of the bickering household in George Street. He seldom went out of doors, except to the British Museum. He had no money to buy books and complains that nobody would lend them. He saw few besides a few exiles, as poor and perhaps as unhappy as himself. He was "lost in a vast crowd of strangers, in a country where want, especially in a foreigner, is a reason for a distrust, which is often unjust and sometimes cruel." In common with his companions, he was miserably poor, often living on potatoes or rice. His father advanced him money to speculate in olive oil; naturally he lost it, and after an angry letter from the hard old man, refused for several years to accept help from home. He tried to find employment as a proof-reader, but in vain. He had an offer of work at Edinburgh, but the Ruffinis would not leave London, and he felt himself tied to them. Literary work came in very slowly, and for a year or two his articles in the English reviews brought in little profit, when the translator had been paid. The income of the rest of the household was not much larger, and the bad house-keepers found that in England "francs were little better than sous." Mazzini, as ever, could not shut his purse to the needy exiles, who importuned him and, as Agostino grumbled, "in the name of this chimera of human brotherhood thought they had a right to make themselves at home in his house." His few possessions soon found their way to the pawn-shop. He pledged his mother's ring, his watch and books and maps; his cloak went to buy cigars, "the one thing I don't think I can do without." On one black Saturday he pawned a pair of boots and an old waistcoat to find food for the Sunday. One winter he risked his health by giving away his only overcoat. His mother, finding that good clothes got sold at once to buy suits for his friends, thought it better to send several suits of cheaper garments, so that he could keep one at least for himself. Sometimes his wardrobe was so depleted, that he had to stay at home, and could not go to the British Museum to carry on his literary work. His generosity was well-known to his better-off friends, and it is not surprising that their patience in lending him money was exhausted. He tried a few years later to negotiate a loan on the security of yet unwritten manuscripts; but the ingenuous scheme met with no better success. Once some friends at Paris lent him £120; another by a ruse persuaded him to accept what was practically a gift;  but when towards the end of his first residence in England a proposal was made at Turin to raise a subscription for him, he obstinately declined it, partly because, if it reached his mother's ears, she "would have died of shame." There were thus only two roads open to him, suicide or the money-lenders. The thought of suicide came to him again and again, but he put it away as a coward's act and for his mother's sake. So more and more he fell into the money-lenders' hands, borrowing at thirty or forty or sometimes nearly one hundred per cent. from loan societies, that "rob the poor man of his last drop of blood and sometimes his last rags of self-respect." Year after year he plunged desperately in the morass, and though £320 seems to have been the limit of his indebtedness, it was a crushing sum for one so utterly destitute. It was the common lot of the exiles, and some of them fared worse. In the midst of wealthy London, with men of means all round them, who shared their political views and made speeches for their cause, Karl Stolzmann, the Polish leader, one of Mazzini's nearest friends, went sometimes literally without food, and Stanislaus Worcell, born a rich Polish noble, was saved from a pauper's burial by an English acquaintance.
Apart, however, from money troubles, Mazzini's external life gradually brightened. In 1840, after a short stay at 26 Clarendon Square, not far from their George Street house, where happily Agostino left them for work in Edinburgh, he and Giovanni moved to 4 York Buildings, which then stood in the angle between King's Road, Chelsea, and Riley Street. He came there to be near the Carlyles, and escape from London gloom and noise and importunate visitors. An Italian artisan, an exile from Perugia, kept house with his English wife, who proved an excellent housekeeper and saved them from servant-girl worries. In those days there was a hay-field on one side of the house and market-gardens on another, some trees in view "of a very sombre green, but still trees," and not far off the Thames, "equally sombre with its muddy dirty-yellow water, but beautiful at night, when its colour is lost in the dark, and the water shines silver in the moonlight, and the barges go down, black, silent, mysterious as ghosts." After a year Giovanni left him after a violent quarrel, and went to Paris. They were never really reconciled again, and Giovanni repaid his friend's devotion with a coldness and contempt almost as unworthy as his brother's, though he did something to atone for it by the sympathetic picture of his old comrade as the Fantasio of his Lorenzo Benoni.
Uncomfortable as his relations with them had been, Mazzini felt the loss of the Ruffinis. With them or without them, the early years of his English life were, if anything, more utterly forlorn and miserable than his worst days in Switzerland. His intellect, indeed, was safe now, though there are indications still of a mental weariness and strain, that bordered on hallucination. There was no longer any fear of a spiritual collapse, like that which had threatened a year or two ago to wreck his moral faith. But he was more wedded to his misery, more desolate, alone in "the solitude of a damned soul." "A man cannot live alone," he writes, "and I have nobody who cares to know what I am thinking of and what I want." His heart sank, when he came home from the British Museum to his bare, dark room, where there was no friend or woman to welcome him, and Agostino's querulous temper to add to the loneliness of it all. More and more the want of response around him made him seal up his thoughts and aspirations. His friends' ingratitude, the desertion of his followers added to the "terrors" of his spiritual solitude. It seemed to him "an age of moral dissolution and unbelief, an age like that in which Christ died." The sense of failure still lay heavy on him, a brooding, unhealthy feeling that his work had been in vain, that it was his doom to bring ill-fortune to his friends, that he had sacrificed himself and made no one happier by it. He felt like "one irrevocably condemned, though without fault." "Pray for me," he writes to one of his best friends, "that, before I die, I may be good for something."
Two things saved him from despair, perhaps from suicide. In the crisis in Switzerland he had put away, once for all, any thought of personal happiness. Sometimes still the natural man rebelled. "Do you think," he writes of Madeleine, "that in my hours of desolation I would not, if I could, seek a breast on which to lay my brow, a loving hand to place upon my head." But he knew that to look for happiness led imperceptibly but certainly to selfishness, that "sacrifice was the one real virtue," that duty "to God, and humanity, and country, and all men" was the only law of life for the true man. And what he had worked out once in cold philosophy, now mellowed into religion, mystical sometimes, but beautiful and saving. Jacopo Ruffini and his own dead sister were praying for him, watching over him, inspiring him with strength and love. Life was an expiation, to purify the soul for another stage, where friends would meet again, and misunderstandings pass, and love reign over all. And even in this world, though sorrow might be the portion of the individual man, Humanity, the great collective being, would go ever forward to new knowledge, and new hopes, and nobler rules of life.
Perhaps, even more than by his faith, he was saved by his intense affections. True that they centred on ever fewer persons. He had hardly a real friend left among his old political associates. For the men and women, whom he was coming to know in England, he felt as yet gratitude but little more. His love for Giuditta Sidoli was fading into a sincere but unpassionate esteem. Madeleine was an impossible dream, that he resolutely shook away. But the dear ones of his boyhood,—Madame Ruffini, his mother, his unmarried sister, even his dour father,—were loved with an affection that was pitifully, almost morbidly sad, but ever more intense. It was the only sunshine in his clouded life. "I feel God's power and law more every day," he wrote to Madame Ruffini, "but He cannot weep with me or fill my soul's void for I am a man still and tied to earth. I worship Him more than I love Him, but you I love." And he pours out, in words that read extravagant but came in truth from his inmost being, all that reverential love, which he felt for her, who had been more than mother, but whose affection for her devotee was cooling all too quickly. Agostino did his best to damage his friend in her eyes; there seems to have been friction between her and Madame Mazzini; and no doubt she sided with her own sons, when the estrangement with them came. At the beginning of 1841 Mazzini's correspondence with her appears to have abruptly ceased.
To his parents he turned yearningly in a new sorrow, that was bowing them down. His one surviving unmarried sister died. She had been his favourite, the one of the family who had sympathized most with his political schemes, and encouraged him in his work, and pleaded for him with his father. Her death obsessed him with an unhealthy depression; but he felt most for his parents, left in the solitude of old age, bereft of the one who had been a needed link between them, for the father had grown morose, and there was evidently some want of harmony between the old people. Then the father himself fell very ill and recovered with difficulty. His son brooded over the thought that he had not been enough to his parents while he was with them, that the life he had chosen for himself had been the cause of all their trouble. Plans for their comfort worked in his mind "like a never-resting wheel." He would have risked the death-sentence that still hung over him, and gone to live with them in hiding, but he knew that the dread of discovery would only have added to their cares. It seems indeed that in 1844 he paid a visit to them in disguise. 
The gloom lifted somewhat, as he began to make friends in England. He was not yet, it is true, in sympathy with English life. He found little liking here for his transcendentalisms, his big indeterminate generalizations; and English love of facts and suspicion of theories seemed to him "materialism incarnate, pure critical analysis," fatal to spiritual or philosophic thought. "Here," he writes, "everybody is a sectarian or a materialist"; and now, as always, he never understood or valued Protestantism. He had a poor opinion of English statesmen, especially of the Whigs, who irritated him by the folly of their attempts to put down Chartism. Nor did he think much better of the Chartist leaders, who were "Englishmen, which means materialists, utilitarians, Benthamists par excellence, with no principle except that of the greatest possible happiness." The severance between the middle and working classes portended, he thought, an imminent and terrible revolution. But he came by degrees to recognize the better side of English life. He admired its tolerance, its insistency and tenacity, the "unity of thought and action, which never rests till it has carried each new social idea into practice, and when it has taken a step, never retraces it." He watched the Chartist movement sympathetically, and contrasted its great following with the scanty disciples of the French socialists. Though he cared little for its doctrines, he saw in it something that rose above "the narrow egotism, which characterizes English politics," and he especially approved, when the Chartists put aside national prejudices and sent their good wishes to the Canadian rebels.
Gradually he came to feel more at home in England. "There," he says, "friendships develop slowly and with difficulty, but nowhere are they so sincere and lasting." "Never," he wrote in after days, "shall I forget, never without a throb of gratitude shall I mention the land, which became a kind of second country to me, where I found friendships that brought an enduring balm to my weary and unhappy life." After a year or two his circle widened almost too rapidly, for clothes and bus fares and the drain upon his time made society an expensive matter to him. One of the first English persons who took an interest in him, was Mrs Archibald Fletcher of Edinburgh. A few months after he came to England, she met him, "a young, slim, dark man of very prepossessing appearance," who could not speak English and wanted admission to a public library. So profoundly unhappy he seemed, that the kind old lady feared suicide and wrote to gently warn him. Mazzini replied that no one but "a man, who wished only to enjoy and has made that his chief thought, will destroy his life as a child does its play-thing."
His first close English friendship was with the Carlyles. "They love me as a brother," he wrote in 1840, "and would like to do me more good than it is in their power to do." For Carlyle he had for several years a very sincere liking. "He is good, good, good; and still, I think, in spite of his great reputation, unhappy." He respected Carlyle's sincerity, his freedom from insular narrowness, his outspokenness. "He may preach the merit of 'holding one's tongue';—to those, in truth, who do not agree with him, are such words addressed,—but 'the talent of silence' is not his." He welcomed him as one "who served the same God" as himself, "though with a different worship"; his ally in the attack on utilitarianism, in the exaltation of the spiritual. "His motive is the love of his fellow-men, a deep and active feeling of duty, for he believes this to be the mission of man on earth." Their common love of Dante, no doubt, too, helped to draw them together. But in his criticisms of his books he condemned, however gently and respectfully, his individualism, his hero-worship, his depreciation of the great common march of the race, his ineffectiveness and timidity, when he came to practical political applications. And the antagonism grew on him, till in time they seemed to be "diametrically opposed." "Why," he said long afterwards to a girl, who had been reading and admiring Carlyle, "you are fast drifting down the road to materialism. You are lost. Carlyle worships force, I combat it with all my might. Carlyle is the sceptic of sceptics. He is grand, when he pulls down, but incapable of reconstructing something [anything] fresh. If instead of loving and admiring nations and humanity, you only love, admire, and reverence individuals, you must end by being an advocate of despots." Carlyle on his side had little sympathy with Mazzini's opinions, which to him were "incredible and (at once tragically and comically) impossible in this world." He was impatient with his "Republicanisms, his 'Progress' and other Rousseau fanaticisms."  He valued him none the less for "a most valiant, faithful, considerably gifted and noble soul." Once the Piedmontese minister spoke lightly of Mazzini in his presence. "Sir, you do not know Mazzini at all, not at all, not at all," Carlyle angrily replied and left the house. At the time of the Bandiera episode, though they had recently been quarrelling, he wrote to the Times, "Whatever I may think of his practical insight and skill in worldly affairs, I can with great freedom testify to all men, that he, if I have ever seen such, is a man of genius and virtue, a man of sterling veracity, humanity, and nobleness of mind, one of those rare men, numerable unfortunately but as units in this world, who are worthy to be called martyr souls; who in silence, piously in their daily life, understand and practise what is meant by that." Mazzini, mindful of their late coolness, was much touched by the defence. "That I call noble," he said of it to a friend.
For Mrs Carlyle Mazzini had a warmer feeling; and she reciprocated it not only with an intense personal confidence, but for a time at all events by sharing his political beliefs. Gradually she came more to her husband's view of these; and Mazzini and she had "warm dialogues," when he unfolded some wild design of throwing away his life in Italy. "Are there not things more important than my head?" he asked her. "Certainly," she replied, "but the man, who has not sense enough to keep his head on his shoulders till something is to be gained by parting from it, has not sense enough to manage any important matter." But "to the last," says Carlyle, "she had always an affection for him"; in 1846 she came to him for advice on her troubled married life, and he appeals to her to "send her ghosts and phantoms back to nothingness" and make it bearable by communion with her dead parents and work and love. "Get up and work. When the Evil One wanted to tempt Jesus, he led Him into a solitude."
Mazzini was a frequent caller at their house; coming in all weathers, "his doe-skin boots oozing out water in a manner frightful to behold" upon her carpets. Sometimes he would come with any story that he could think of to amuse her; sometimes he would discuss Dante with John Carlyle, who was then writing his translation of the Divina Commedia, till Carlyle grew weary of the talk and reminded both that the last bus was starting. Margaret Fuller has left a description of an evening spent with the trio; how Mazzini turned the conversation "to progress and ideal subjects, and Carlyle was fluent in invectives on all our 'rose-water imbecilities,'" how his flippancy saddened Mazzini, and Mrs Carlyle said to Margaret, "these are but opinions to Carlyle, but to Mazzini, who has given his all and helped bring his friends to the scaffold in pursuit of such subjects, it is a matter of life and death." On another occasion Carlyle, after monopolizing the talk while he passed in long review the silent great ones of earth, turned to Mazzini, saying, "You have not succeeded yet, because you have talked too much." The contests between them became more frequent and painful. They would argue, so the tradition has been handed down, the one courteous, deeply moved, pleading with his whole heart, eloquent in his rather broken English; the other exaggerative, splenetic, scornful in the wild flow of his language. All the time Mazzini would sit pale and quiet in his chair, sometimes excited almost to tears, nervously smoking his small cigar; while Carlyle with his long clay pipe shifted restlessly, as he stormed out his sentences.  None the less Mazzini's intimacy with them went on unbroken, at all events as far as Mrs Carlyle was concerned, through all his first stay in England. When he left for Milan in 1848, he told her with a kiss to be "strong and good until he returned"; and when he came back aged and worn, she sadly stroked his grey beard. She found lodgings for him; she went to comfort him, when prostrated by his mother's death. But the severance between him and her husband gradually widened, till two or three years later they completely parted, to respect each other's character and detest each other's opinions to the end. Once more they met, years afterwards, and "talked in a cordial and sincere way with real emotion on both sides." "Mazzini," Carlyle noted at the time, "is the most pious living man I now know." Even for his politics he had at last some tolerance. "The idealist has conquered," he confessed, "and transformed his utopia into a patent and potent reality."
With the Carlyles, however, even in the days of his closest acquaintanceship, he was never at home as he came to be in other English households. His best friends in the forties were the Ashursts of Muswell Hill. They were, he says, "a dear, good, holy family, who surrounded me with such loving care as sometimes to make me forget I was an exile." W. H. Ashurst was a solicitor, who had been a friend of Robert Owen, and who made Mazzini's acquaintance at the time of the letter-opening episode. To Mrs Ashurst Mazzini, forgetful of Madame Ruffini's expired title, gave the name of "second mother." One daughter married James Stansfeld; the other, at this time "the favourite of his English sisters," afterwards became Madame Venturi, and has left the best English memoir of him. Both they and their brother for long years after gave him much quiet help in his work. Through the Ashursts he came to know the Stansfelds and Peter Taylors, but his intimate friendship with them belongs rather to the time of his second residence in England. Among his other friends were William Shaen, whom the Italian refugees knew as their angelo salvatore, Joseph Toynbee, the father of Arnold Toynbee, Joseph Cowen, afterwards member for Newcastle, and George Jacob Holyoake. J. S. Mill wrote of him as "one of the men he most respected." Margaret Fuller, who had come to England prepossessed against him, lost her prejudices when she visited his school for organ-boys, and began the friendship which was to be renewed in the days of the Roman Republic. "She is," he writes of her to a friend, "one of the rarest of women in her love and active sympathy with everything that is great, beautiful, and holy." He had some intercourse with the two, next to himself, most notable Italian exiles in London at that time, Gabriel Rossetti and Antonio Panizzi. Mazzini interested Rossetti in his school, and they had common acquaintances among the exiles; but they never came into close touch, and Mazzini tried in vain to persuade him to help in his patriotic work. At a later date political differences completely sundered them. Panizzi was already Keeper of Printed Books at the British Museum. He had been a Carbonaro in his Italian days, and he and Mazzini had common ground in their cult of Dante and Foscolo. He backed Mazzini warmly in the incident of the letter-opening a few years later; but they disagreed on Italian politics, and they saw little of one another, though they seem to have been never entirely estranged. Among other foreigners that he met were Prince Napoleon ("Plon-Plon"), then busily conspiring against the Orleanists, and Conneau, afterwards Louis Napoleon's doctor and a general go-between for the Emperor and the Italian patriots. But he hated anything that tasted of fashionable society. The mistress of a famous London salon once persuaded him to come to her house, but when he found that she wanted him to adorn her society and not from any interest in his cause, he refused to go again.
He came at this time much under the influence of Lamennais. They began to correspond soon after the Words of a Believerwere published, and once at least they met. Mazzini saw a kindred soul in this "priest of the Church Universal," who "preached God, the people, love, and liberty"; this man "whom I saw but lately," so he writes in 1839, "so full of sweetness and love, who weeps like a child at a symphony of Beethoven, who will give his last franc to the poor, who tends flowers like a woman, and steps out of his path rather than crush an ant." He recognised how much Lamennais' teaching had in common with his own in its reaction against the sceptical, destructive school of the Revolution, in its belief in tradition and humanity, in its appeal to duty as the principle of life. In some degree, perhaps, Lamennais' Words of a Believer inspired his own Duties of Man. He had his own plans for him. He saw in him "a Luther of the nineteenth century"; he hoped, though not very confidently, that he would come frankly forward as a teacher of the religion of humanity, and he urged him to "do something better than write books," and become the missionary of the new faith. Lamennais replied, that though Christ could preach in the highways, four persons could not meet now in a field to speak of God and humanity without being taken up by a policeman. Mazzini was grievously disappointed at the refusal, and he felt that Lamennais regarded him with some diffidence, as indeed was natural enough. He "loved him as a friend and revered him as a saint"; but he felt that Lamennais returned his love "as it were in spite of himself." "This good Mazzini, one cannot help loving him," Lamennais once said in his hearing; and the phrase left an unhappy sense in Mazzini's mind.
Lamennais and "George Sand" were in his judgment "the two first living writers of France" at this time, and he looked to the latter too as one of his own faith. At the time of his mental crisis in Switzerland he read her Lettres d'un Voyageur (he always thought it her best production), and the book was "sweet to him as is the cradle song to a weeping child." He corresponded with her, and in 1847 visited her in the Vallée Noire. She impressed him above all, as she did Matthew Arnold the year before, by her simplicity. "Madame Sand," he wrote back to England, "is just as we wanted her to be; good, noble, candid, simple, calmly suffering, even more than can be seen in her books." He warmly defended her in England; not that he thought that all her books were to be lightly put into everybody's hand; but "the evil she has portrayed is not her evil, it is ours," and her realism was informed by a passionate moral purpose. Genius, he said, can in the long-run do nothing but good, and it is bound to make itself heard. "You may sound your alarm against her in your old Quarterly, and forbid your youth to read her: you will find some day, without well knowing how, the best places in your library usurped by her volumes." He saw in her "an apostle of religious democracy"; he responded to her sense of the Divine, her belief that the decay of the old creeds restored allegiance to the true Godhead, her faith in a future which should be built on love. He delighted to repeat her words, "there is but one virtue, the eternal sacrifice of self." And he saw in her, too, the voice of down-trodden womanhood; "thank God," he says, "she is a woman," and her books were a revelation of the "inward life of woman," a woman's pleading for justice and equality. At this time few writers appealed to him more; but her later works and her acceptance of the Empire alienated him, and afterwards he "sadly and unwillingly" convinced himself that what he had hailed as the sincere and conscious "utterance of a high priestess," was but the artist's passive echo of a faith that was not hers.
Slowly, besides making friends, Mazzini began to find work. The difficulties were great. He was at first too worn-out and unhappy to care to write. He could not yet write in English, and the expenses of translation absorbed a large part of the remuneration. It was a painful effort to trim his pen to the likings of the English public. "My ideas and style frighten them," he says. "What is old to us is new to them. One cannot talk to them of mission or humanity or progress or socialism." One editor refused an article in praise of Byron, "because Byron was an immoral poet." Kemble, the editor of the British and Foreign Review, politely declined his articles, after some experience of them, on the ground that the English public were "conceited asses," who could only gradually be broken in to listen to generalizations. Mazzini sometimes promised to do his best, but the effort came unwillingly, and it was only the pressing need of money and his resolve to ask no more from home, that made him write in an alien style on subjects that often had little interest for him. To an English reader, however, the discipline appears a salutary one; and his English articles have a precision of thought that his earlier writings lacked. His literary out-put was considerable. Some of his articles were more or less pot-boiling; thus he wrote on Fra Paolo Sarpi in theWestminster Review, on Victor Hugo and Lamartine—brilliant and suggestive essays—in the British and Foreign Review, on contemporary French literature in the Monthly Chronicle. He put more heart into those on English subjects,—his masterly criticisms of Carlyle in the British and Foreign Review and the Monthly Chronicle, and his papers on Chartism in Tait's Edinburgh Journal. But what he cared for most was to bring Italy or his own religious faith before English readers. He wrote for the love of it, when he discoursed on Dante's Minor Works in the Foreign Quarterly and on Lamennais in the Monthly Chronicle, or when he wrote on Italian politics for the same magazine, and on recent Italian literature, and probably on Italian art, for the Westminster Review. In the People's Journal under John Saunders' editorship he began the Thoughts on Democracy in Europe, which were afterwards expanded into I sistemi e la democrazia,—a very able criticism of the utilitarian and earlier socialist schools; in his own Apostolato Popolare he wrote the first six chapters of the noblest of all his writings, The Duties of Man. He seems to have written a novel, which never saw the light.
He found one literary task very near his heart. From the days of his early studies at Genoa, he had had a supreme admiration for Ugo Foscolo, as the one modern Italian writer, besides Alfieri, who had a virile political teaching for his countrymen. While in Switzerland, he had planned to write his life, and made researches for his manuscripts and rare and scattered publications. His interest strengthened, now that he was living close to where Foscolo's bones lay in Chiswick churchyard. He knew that Pickering, one of Foscolo's English publishers, possessed the manuscript of his unfinished notes on the Divina Commedia, already published, but with many inaccuracies, in 1825; and in a dusty corner of Pickering's shop he found the proof of part of Foscolo's Lettera apologetica, a kind of political testament, which apparently had not been published. Mazzini undertook the task of getting both re-published with more zeal than candour. Pickering would not sell the Letteraapart from the Dante manuscript, and asked £420 for the two. Mazzini "cursed his bookseller soul, and would have stolen them without scruple, if he could." A Tuscan lady, Foscolo's donna gentile, lent the money for the proofs; and Rolandi, the Italian publisher in Berners Street, was disposed to buy the Dante notes. Mazzini found that the notes were very incomplete, and feared that Rolandi would not buy, if aware of the deficiencies. He concealed the fact, and with immense labour completed the notes and the revision of the text. Rolandi, who, it seems, did not discover the pious fraud, bought the manuscript, and in 1842 published the edition in four volumes with an anonymous introduction by Mazzini, who took no pay for his known and unknown labours. The edition had its value at the time, though its interest now is historical only. Meanwhile he discovered the remaining manuscript of the Lettera apologetica in an old trunkful of Foscolo's papers; and thanks mainly to his friend, Enrico Mayer, the educationalist, this and others of Foscolo's political writings were published at Lugano in 1844. Mazzini gave much assistance to Le Monnier, the Florentine publisher, in the complete edition of Foscolo, which he brought out a few years later. But the life remained undone. For years with the true student's fever he hunted up every letter and record of Foscolo, to which he could find a clue. But as time went on, politics and social work commanded him again, and the biography, on which so many cares had been spent, was never written.
Gradually he returned to political work. At first the moral prostration produced intense lassitude; and he found it as difficult to settle down to politics as to literature. There were moments indeed of nervous reaction, when his brain teemed with "daring projects, titanic presentiments, limitless conceptions." But generally the struggle with depression used up his strength, and he felt too weary and discouraged to revive Young Italy. He seems, a few months before he left Switzerland, to have taken some sort of formal step to abdicate leadership. But where no actual organization survived, and there was no one to step into his place, the retirement meant nothing. Young Italy was so completely himself, that the society was non-existent, till he took up the reins again. There had been something of a stampede among its members. In Italy many had made their peace with the governments; others were nourishing their faith in silence; few carried on the work, at least in the old spirit. Conspiracy, it is true, was not quite dead; but the few secret societies, that still lived on, mostly harked back to Carbonaro traditions, or turned to an agrarian and free-thinking agitation, which was as hateful to Mazzini as apostacy itself. It was no better among the exiles. "There are not two of us," he complained, "who think the same on any single subject." "You cannot find one Young Italian among us." Many took advantage of the Lombard and Piedmontese amnesties to return home. Gioberti was attacking the society. Even those nearest to Mazzini had little faith in its methods or hopes, and Mazzini would compromise on no tittle of his creed to win them. In his high singleness of purpose he could not understand or tolerate the faintness of men, who had sworn to fight for an idea, but deserted at the first defeat. If his countrymen had not responded, that was only an argument for renewed and yet more strenuous effort. It was all so pitiful to him,—this want of faithfulness unto death. "When I write in favour of Italy," he says, "I feel myself blush, as if I were lying." For a time, though, he himself felt powerless to act. He was tempted to go to Italy, and throw away his life in some desperate act of protest. But he had too fine a nature to be long content with inaction or despair. "If you only knew," he writes early in 1839, "how this absolute uselessness of existence weighs on me." He dreaded dying with his work undone. Jacopo Ruffini's memory was ever present with him, and he felt that he was dedicated to the cause for which his protomartyr had died. He had taken on himself a task "in the face of God and Italy and himself"; he thought of himself as blasphemer and hypocrite, if he slackened in it; and though he knew that his enthusiasm had gone, sometimes too his confidence in Italy and himself, yet duty still remained, and he could trust in God and the righteousness of his cause. "I know," he wrote, "that Jacopo is not dead, that he and we are forerunners, not of a new policy, but of a new faith, which we perhaps shall see not, but whose advent no human force can stop."
It was not however till the summer or autumn of 1839,  that he decided to return to active political work "with an almost fierce resolve." At first he had no definite plan, except to accentuate the popular side of his programme and appeal more than he had yet done to the working classes. He had at present little means of reaching those at home, but he could do something among the Italian population in London, the shopkeepers and organ-grinders and hawkers of terra-cotta casts. Hitherto he had been little in contact with his working-class compatriots; now in the whirl of a foreign city he came to know them. It began with his intense feeling for suffering, that for the remainder of his life made him happiest when relieving individual cases of misery. About this time, going out one winter morning, he found a young girl on the doorstep worn out with cold and hunger. With the sympathy for forlorn womanhood, which he had in common with the greatest of English statesmen, he took her in and put her in his landlady's charge. When the girl afterwards married, and was deserted by her husband, he undertook the education of her children, and for many years devoted to it a large share of his scanty income. The same charity now drew him to the waifs of his own land. Talking to the Italian organ-boys, who went about the streets of London with a barrel-organ and its squirrel or white rat, speaking a patois half Comasque half English, he learnt the details of the "white-slave traffic," how a few Italians living in London brought over poor peasant-boys under contracts, which promised high pay and good living, but which had no validity in England; how when the boys got there, they were beaten and half-starved and cowed. He brought the worst offenders to justice, and did something to frighten the masters into better treatment of their victims. But he cared more to influence the boys themselves. In 1841 he opened a school at 5 Hatton Garden (afterwards removed to 5 Greville Street, Leather Lane), where the boys came in the late evenings to learn the three Rs and some elementary science, and on Sundays had lessons in drawing and Italian history. The school was very dear to Mazzini, and the boys, says an English observer, "revered him as a god and loved him as a father." One of them, returning to Italy, travelled to Genoa expressly to tell Madame Mazzini what her son had done for him. Italian and English friends (Joseph Toynbee among them) taught gratuitously, and the annual supper was a great event for him and his circle. Mario and Grisi sang at concerts to help the school's finances. The school flourished in spite of the noisy opposition of a neighbouring Italian priest,—an opposition, which Mazzini repaid by his first angry attack on the Papacy.
Already, before the school was opened, he had started a political society for the Italian workmen in London, and was publishing a paper, the Apostolato Popolare, which came out at intervals till 1843. In it he makes his appeal to the working-men of Italy. He felt more strongly even than in his Marseilles days that a revolutionary movement must depend for its main support on the working classes and have their good for its ultimate goal. English life had brought him into touch with the social thought of the time, and he felt that political movements were dwarfing beside the question of the condition of the masses. He began to speak of the Italy to-be as the "Italy of the People." It was the people, he wrote, who suffered most from her dismemberment and misrule. While other classes had their compensations, there were no distractions for the unknown poor, no true home life, no intellectual interest. He tried to rouse them from their provincialism, their self-absorbed indifference to politics. He appealed to them to be patriots and republicans, proud of their country's glorious past, working for its future and their children, and remember that God would judge them not by what wages they earned but by what they had done for their fellows. But however much he laid stress on the democratic side of his agitation, on working-class organization and social reform, he was careful to safeguard Young Italy from becoming a class movement. It was at this time and in his papers for working men, that he first began the crusade against socialism, which he continued, sometimes with less discernment, to the end of life.