MUSSET

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MUTSUHITO

mussel of salt water (Mytilus), living along the shores of the northern Atlantic, is often eaten in Europe, but rarely in America. It is abundant between high and low water marks, and is usually anchored by a tuft of yellowish silken filaments (Lyssus) spun from glands in its body. The common freshwater clam is the fresh-water mussel. These mollusks belong to the group of Lamellibran-chiata.

Musset ( mii'sa' ), Alfred de, was born at Paris, Nov. 11, 1810, the son of an officer in the war-office. At 19 he published his Tales of Spain and Italy, a volume of unequal verse. In 1833 appeared two of his greatest works, the tragical comedies, André del Sarto and Marianne's Caprices. Next followed the famous poem of Rolla. He always was as unsteady in character as in genius, and the feverish activity that sometimes seized him spent itself in splendid plans and unfinished poems. In 1840 his health broke down, and he wrote but little. As Heine said, he was "a young man with a splendid past ;" he felt himself an old man at 30. The success of his play, A Caprice, in 1847, put life into him for a short time. He died at Paris of heart-disease, May 1, 1857. The Night of May and The Night of October are perfect and undying lyrics. As a poet of passion he comes close to Byron in power. His plays have not their equals in 19th-century literature for originality, wit and real dramatic genius. His largest prose-work was the famous Confession of a Child of the Age; but greater are his short stories and tales, as Emmeline, Pierre and Camille, Mademoiselle Mimi Pinson and Margot. De Musset's whole work fills but ten small volumes, but they include some of the finest poetry, greatest plays and best short stories in French literature.

Mus'tard, species of Brassica, a genus belonging to the mustard family. The genus contains about 100 species of herbs, natives to north temperate regions. To the same genus belongs the cabbage, with its cauliflower and kale varieties, rape, rutabaga and common turnip. The true mustards are B. alba (white mustard), B. nigra (black mustard) and B. juncea (Chinese mustard). Table mustard is the flour formed from grinding the seeds, mostly from black mustard, though the white and Chinese mustards are also used. The white and black mustards often become widely distributed weeds. The large, soft, basal leaves of these forms are also frequently used for "greens." The pale yellow flowers of the black mustard are very familiar; they bloom all summer on a many-branched plant from three to six feet high, the half-inch-long pods filled with dark-colored, pungent seeds The seeds of the white mustard are light-colored, flowers yellow. In England mustard is planted for forage and cut before the seeds are ripe.

Mutsuhito (moot'sob-he'to), Emperor of Japan. With the "Era of Enlightened Peace " of Japan, which dates from 1868, will always be associated the name of the pres-ent emperor whose reign coincides with the renaissance of the empire. Cromwell, Washington and Diaz refused crowns, but to Mutsuhito belongs the singular distinction of resigning despotic power. In all recorded his-

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MUTSUHITO

tory there is no other instance of voluntary relinquishment of an autocracy held in one family for 25 centuries. The constitution of Japan is a gift from the throne, in a time of peace, under no pressure of revolution or external coercion, to a people who were deliberately educated in the proper understanding and use of it.

The story of Mutsuhito's life is one of wildest romance. He was born on November 3, 1852, in the temple-palace of Kioto. This old sacred capital of Japan is an inland city near the southern extremity of Nippon Island, 250 miles from Yedo (Tokyo) where the shogun had his court and citadel. Hemmed in by streams and mountains, walled and forbidden, it was an isolated city of palaces, temples, shrines and pleasure-gardens, inhabited by nobles of imperial ancestry. The emperor's palace stood in a great walled park guarded by nobles, Shinto priests and royal samurai. Here, in the middle of the 19th century, the crown-prince Mutsuhito grew up in such hermit-seclusion as surrounds only the Grand Llama of Tibet in the monastery palace of Lhasa to-day. He was the 123d of a royal line that (it is alleged) ran back to Emperor Jimmu, 600 B. C, and was the living representative of gods who created Dai Nippon for a throne in the sea. He was a sacred person into whose presence only a few of exalted rank could be admitted. For two centuries and a half the emperors had lived thus, "behind the screen," leaving the task of governing and defending the empire to the military chieftain or shogun. The shogunate had become hereditary in the Tokugawa family and a despotic military dictatorship established over the empire. To the common people their emperor was an invisible, semi-mythical deity to whom they addressed prayers in Shinto temples. No murmur of the civil wars that raged in Japan for more than two centuries penetrated the imperial hermitage; no foreign wares of the Portuguese and Dutch who traded in Nagasaki in the 16th century were