« PreviousContinue »
made at the station during the year in afforded by the visit of a trader, British inanuwhich Mr. Moffat was at Cape Town getting | factures were eagerly purchased. his translations printed, and acquiring al For a long period, when a man was seen to
make a pair of trowsers for himself, or a woman knowledge of the art of printing, which, to
a gown, it was a sure intimation that we might gether with that of the blacksmith, the ma
expect additions to our inquirers; abandoning son, the carpenter, &c., was now brought to the custom of painting the body, and beginning the station. A small hymn-book was first to wash with water, was with them what cutting printed there. We are told
off the hair was among the South Sea islanders, Among the treasures brought with us from the
a public renunciation of heathenism. colony, was a box of materials for clothing, for the The garments were, and probably still encouragement of such as were making efforts to are, awkward, grotesque, and incongruous clothe themselves. This was the first supply of enough according
supply enough, according to European ideas; but the kind, and nothing could be more seasonable to
what an advance from the grease and ochre a people just beginning to emerge from barbarism, the impoverished remains of scattered tribes, but | besmeared persons and filthy customs of the first-fruits of the Gospel among the Bechuanas. I former times! The needy were supplied, and many a heart was
Our congregation now became a variegated made glad.
mass, including all descriptions, from the lubriMr. Moffat contends that "evangelization cated wild man of the desert, to the clean, commust precede civilization.” Among his con
fortable, and well dressed believer. The same
spirit diffused itself through all the routine of verts they seem to have gone hand in hand.
household economy. Formerly a chest, a chair, It was either made a condition or was a de
a candle, or a table, were things unknown, and cent custom observed, that those who were supposed to be only the superfluous accompanibaptized should previously procure decent ments of beings of another order. Although clothing. How much of happy change to they never disputed the superiority of our attaina whole people is comprehended in the fol. ments in being able to manufacture these super
fluities, they would however question our comlowing passage.
mon sense in taking so much trouble about them. Hitherto, a sewing school had been uncalled They thought us particularly extravagant in sor, the women's work being that of building
burning fat in the form of candles, instead of houses, raising fences and cultivating the ground, rubbing it on our bodies, or depositing it in our while the lords of the creation, for their own con- stomachs. venience and comfort, had from time immemorial added to their pursuits the exercise of sew
A bunch of home-made candles hanging ing their garments, which, from their durability from the wall of a hut was now often to be and scanty supply, was any thing but a laborious seen; and afforded the missionary more work. It was a novel sight to observe women gratification than the most charming pic. and young girls handling the little bright instru- ture; as an indication that instead of mop: ment, which was scarcely perceptible to the
ing over the embers, unable to see what touch of fingers accustomed to grasp the handle of a pickaxe, or to employ them to supply the
they were eating, or each other, the inmates absence of trowels. But ihey were willing and could now read, work, and converse by the Mrs. M., in order to encourage them, engaged to steady light of a candle. “We have been meet them as often as her strength would per- I like the beasts," the poor Bechuapas would mit. She had soon a motley group of pupils, now exclaim ; "what shall we do to be very few of the whole party possessing either a saved ?" frock or gown. The scarcity of materials was The lovers of Natural History, and juve. a serious impediment to progress; and living as we did far beyond the reach of traders, and six
is nile readers, will find much to gratify their hundred miles from a market town, it was next tastes in this volume, wbich abounds in an. vto impossible to obtain them, at least just when ecdotes of lions, elephants, baboons, hyenas, wanted. The same Gospel which had taught buffaloes, &c.; and of the dangers incurred them that they were spiritually miserable, blind, in numerous encounters with them, while and naked, discovered to them also that they the missionary was travelling through the needed reform externally, and thus prepared arid deserts. The perils and adventures of their minds to adopt those modes of comfort, cleanliness and convenience, which they had
Mr. Catlin among the Red Indians, and the been accustomed to view only as the peculiarities
buffaloes and bisons of the Far, far west," of a strange people. Thus, by the slow but are not nearly so stirring as those of the certain progress of Gospel principles, whole missionary Moffat, in the wilds of Africa, families became clothed and in their right mind. I while bivouacking or seeking food for him. Ornaments which were formerly in high repute, self and his attendants in the chase. And he as adorning, but more frequently disfiguring their persons, were now turned into bullion to pur
appears to have handled a rifle quite as chase skins of animals, which being prepared bravely and as skilfully as a text. One almost as soft as cloth, were made into jackets, night, when sorely in want of "a collop," trowsers, and gowns. When opportunity was he went with two of his company, to watch
at a place where wild cattle were likely to fit with roaring congratulation. In vain I shouted come to drink, resolving to shoot whatever that it was not dead : a dozen spears were thrust into first appeared, rather than be, next day, ex
ther than he next day e lit, when up started the animal in a fury, and tearposed to the burning sun, on an arid plain,
ling up the ground with his horn, made every one
an, Ay in terror. These animals were very numerous in bunting for food. The hunters lay in alin this part of the country : they are not gregari hollow place, close by the fountain.
ous, more than four or five being seldom seen toIt was half moonlight, and rather cold, though gether, though I once observed nine following each the days were warm. We remained for a cou
other to the water. They fear no enemy but man, ple of hours, waiting with great anxiety for an
and are fearless of him when wounded and pursurBomething to appear. We at length heard a
Caled. The lion flics before them like a cat ; the loud lapping at the water, under the dark sha
mohohu, the largest species, has been known even dowy bank, within twenty yards of us. “What lo kill the elephant, by thrusting the horn into his is that?" I asked Bogachu. «Ririmala." (be ribs. silent,) he said; “there are lions, they will hear ! On another occasion, when Moffat was us." A hint was more than enough; and thank
traversing the desert, bound on a distant
over ful were we, that, when they had drunk, they did not come over the smooth grassy surface in expedition, he relatesour direction. Our next visitors were two buffa- Our journey lay over a wild and dreary counloes, one immensely large. My wagon-driver, try, inhabited by Balalas only, and but a sprinMosi, who also had a gun, seeing them coming di. kling of these. On the night of the third day's rectly towards us, begged me to fire. I refused, journey, having halted at a pool, (Khokhole,) we having more dread of a wounded buffalo than listened, on the lonely plain, for the sound of an of almost any other animal. He fired; and inhabitant, but all was silent. We could discothough the animal was severely wounded, he ver no lights, and, amid the darkness were unastood like a statue with his companion, within a ble to trace footmarks to the pool. We let loose hundred yards of us, for more than an hour, our wearied oxen to drink and graze, but as we waiting to see us move, in order to attack us. were ignorant of the character of the company We lay in an awkward position for that time, with which we might have to spend the nighi, scarcely daring to whisper; and when he at last we took a firebrand, and examined the edges of retired we were so stiff with cold, that fight the pool to sec, from the imprints, what animals would have been impossible had an attack bren were in the habit of drinking there, and, with made. We then moved about till our blood be- terror, discovered many spoors of lions. We imgan to circulate. Our next visitors were two mediately collected the oxen, and brought them giraffes; one of these we wounded. A troop of to the wagon, to wbich we fastened them with quaggas next came; but the successful instinct the strongest thongs we had, having discovered of the principal stallion, in surveying the pre-in their appearance something rather wild, indicincts of the water, galloping round in all direc- cating that either from scent or sight, they knew tions to catch any strange scent, and returning danger was near. The two Barolongs had. to the troop with a whistling noise, to announce brought a young cow with them, and though I danger, set them off at full speed. The next recommended their making her fast also, they was a huge rhinoceros, which, receiving a mor- very humorously replied that she was too wise tal wound, departed. Hearing the approach of to leave the wagon and oxen, even though a more lions, we judged it best to leave; and alter lion should be scented. We took a litile supper, a lonely walk of four miles through bushes, hy- which was followed by our evening hymn and enas and jackals, we reached the village, when prayer. I had retired only a few minutes to my I felt thankful, resolving never to hunt by night wagon to prepare for the night, when the whole at a water-pool, till I could find nothing to eat of the oxen started to their feet. A lion had elsewhere. Next day the rhinoceros and buffalo seized the cow only a few steps from their tails, were found, which afforded a plentiful supply and dragged it to the distance of thirty or forty
yards, where we distinctly heard it tearing the The thrilling adventures of Mr. Moffat, animal, and breaking the bones, while its bel and other travellers in Africa, throw the lowings were most pitiful. When these were feats of our lion-tamers of the theatre into over, I seized my gun, but as it was too dark to the shade.
see any object at half the distance, I aimed at the In another place our hunter relates
spot where the devouring jaws of the lion were
heard. I fired again and again, to which he When I had occasion to hunt, in order to sup- replied with tremendous roars, at the same time ply the wants of myself and people, a troop of men making a rush towards the wagon, so as exceed would follow, and as soon as a rhinoceros or any ingly to terrify the oxen. The two Barolongs other animal was shot, a fire was made, and some engaged to take firebrands, advance a few yards, would be roasting, while the others would be cut- and throw them at him, so as to afford me a ting and tearing away at the ponderous carcase, degree of light, that I might take aim, the place which is soon dissected. During these operations being bushy. They had scarcely discharged shey would exhibit all the gestures of heathenish them from their hands, when the flame went out, jny, making an uproar as if a town were on fire. I and the enraged animal rushed towards them do not wonder that Mr. Campbell once remarked with such swiftness, that I had barely time to on a similar occasion, that from their noise and ges- turn the gun and fire between the men and the tures he did not know his travelling companions. lion, and providentially the ball struck the ground Having once shot a rhinoceros, the men surrounded limmediately under his head, as we found by examination the following morning. From this the marvellous, with which the tales of some trasurprise he returned, growling dreadfully. The vellers are said to abound. I give it as received men darted through some thorn-bushes with from men of God, and men who had been expecountenances indicative of the utmost terror. It rienced Nimrods too. The old lion, when in was now the opinion of all that we had better company with his children, as the natives call let him alone if he did not molest us.
| them, though they are nearly as big as himself; Having but a scanty supply of wood to keep or, when nunbers together happen to come upon up a fire, one man crept among the bushes on game, the oldest or ablest creeps to the object, one side of the pool, while I proceeded for the while the others crouch on the grass ; if he be same purpose on the other side. I had not gone successful, which he generally is, he retires from far, when, looking upward to the edge of the his victim, and lies down to breathe, and rest, small basin, I discerned between me and the for perhaps a quarter of an hour ; in the mean sky four animals, whose attention appeared to time, the others draw around, and lie down al a be directed to me, by the noise I made in break- respectful distance. When the chief one has ing a dry stick. On closer inspection, I found got his rest, he commences at the abdomen and that the large, round, hairy-headed visitors were breast, and after making havoc with the tit-bits Jions; and retreated on my hands and feet of the carcase, he will take a second rest, none of towards the other side of the pool, when, coming the others presuming to move. Having made to my wagon-driver, to inform him of our dan- a second gorge, he retires, the others, watching ger, I found him looking, with no little alarm, in his motions, rush on the remainder, and it is soon an opposite direction, and with good reason, as devoured. At other times, if a young lion seizes no fewer than two lions, with a cub, were eyeing the prey, and an old one happens to come up, us both, apparently as uncertain about us as we the younger retires till the elder has dined. were distrustsul of them. They appeared, as This was what Africaner called better manners they always do in the dark, iwice the usual size.than those of the Namaquas, (who abandon their We thankfully decamped to the wagon, and sat aged parents. down to keep alive our scanty fire, while we lis- Passing along a vale, we came to a spot tened to the lion tearing and devouring his prey. where the lion appeared to have been exercising When any of the other hungry lions dared to himself in the way of leaping. As the natives approach, he would pursue them for some paces, are very expert in tracing the manœuvres of aniwith a horrible howl, which made our poor oxen mals by their footmarks, it was soon discovered tremble, and produced any thing but agreeable that a large lion had crept towards a short black sensations in ourselves. We had reason for stump, very like the human form; when within alarm, lest any of the six lions we saw, fearless about a dozen yards, it bounded on its supposed of our small fire, might rush in among us. The prey, when, to his mortification, he fell a foot or two Barolongs were grudging the lion bis fat iwo short of it. According to the testimony of meal, and would now and then break the silence a native who had been watching his motions, with a deep sigh, and expressions of regret that and who joined us soon after, the lion lay for such a vagabond lion should have such a feast on some time steadfastly eyeing its supposed meal. their cow, which they anticipated would have It then arose, smelt the object, and returned to afforded them many a draught of luscious milk. the spot from which he commenced his first leap, Before the day dawned, having deposited nearly and leaped four several times, till at last be the whole of the carcase in his stomach, he col-placed his paw on the imagined prize. On anolected the head, backbone, parts of the legs, the iher occasion, when Africaner and an attendant paunch, which he emptied of its contents, and were passing near the end of a hill, from which the two clubs which had been thrown at him. juited out a smooth rock of ten or twelve seet and walked off, leaving nothing but some frag-high, he observed a number of zebras pressing ments of bones, and one of my balls, which had round it, obliged to keep the path, beyond which hit the carcase instead of himself.
it was precipitous. A lion was seen creeping up When it was light we examined the spot, and towards the path, to intercept the large stallion, found, from the foot-marks, that the lion was a which is always in the rear to defend or warn large one, and had devoured the cow himself. I the troop. The lion missed his mark, and while had some difficulty in believing this, but was the zebra rushed round the point, the lion knew fully convinced by the Barolongs pointing out to well if he could mount the rock at one leap, the me that the foot-marks of the other lions had not next would be on the zebra's back, it being come within thirty yards of the spot, two jackals obliged to turn towards the hill. He fell short, only had approached to lick up any little leavings with only his head over the stone, looking at the The men pursued the spoor to find the fragments, galloping zebra switching his tail in the air. He where the lion had deposited them, while he re- then tried a second and a third leap, till he succeedtired to a thicket to sleep during the day. I had ed. In the mean tinje two more lions came up, and often heard how much a large, hungry lion could seemed to talk and roar away about something, eat, but nothing less than a demonstration would while the old lion led them round the rock, and have convinced me that it was possible for him round it again ; then he made another grand to have eaten all the flesh of a good heiler, and leap, to show them what he and they must do many of the bones, for scarcely a rib was left. next time. Africaner added, with the most per and even some of the marrow-bones were broken fect gravity, They evidently talked to each as if with a hammer. . . . . . Much has other, but though loud enough, I could not unbeen written about African lions, but the half derstand a word they said; and, fearing lest we has not been told. The following trait in their should be the next objects of their skill, we crept character may not be intrusive, or partaking of away and left them in council.”
At an earlier period, and in another part of On one occasion I was remarkably preserved the country, the following circumstance when all expected that my race was run. We had occurred, and formed Mr. Moffat's first in reached the river early in the afternoon, after a
dreadfully scorching ride across a plain. Three of troduction to the companionship of lions: 1
my companions, who were in advance, rode forward One night we were quietly bivouacked at a to a Bushman village, on an ascent some hundred small pool on the 'Oup River, where we never yards from the river. I went, because my horse anticipated a visit from his majesty. We had would go, towards a little pool on a dry branch, just closed our united evening worship, the book from which the flood or torrent had receded to the was still in my hand, and the closing notes of the larger course. Dismounting, I pushed through a song of praise had scarcely fallen from our lips, narrow opening in the bushes, and lying down, when the terrific roar of the lion was heard: our took a hearty draught. Immediately on raising oxen, which before were quietly chewing the myself I felt an unusual taste in my mouth, and cud, rushed upon us, and over our fires, leaving looking attentively at the water, and the temporary us prostrated in a cloud of dust and sand. Hats fence around, it flashed across my mind that the and hymn books, our Bible and our guns, were water was poisoned for the purpose of killing game. all scattered in wild confusion. Providentially, I came out, and meeting one of our number, who no serious injury was sustained; the oxen were had been a little in the rear, just entering, told him pursued, brought back, and secured to the wagon, my suspicion. lor we could ill afford to lose any. Africaner, seeing the reluctance of the people to pursue in ! He recovered, after great suffering, and a dark and gloomy ravine, grasped a firebrand, tellsand exclaimed, “ Follow me !” and but for this promptness and intrepidity we must have lost I was deeply affected by the sympathy of some of our number, for nothing can exceed the poor Bushmen, to whom we were utter strangers.
a lion. When they saw me laugh, they deafened our ears Though they may happen to be in the worst
with expressions of satisfaction, making a croaking condition possible, worn out with fatigue and
and clicking, of which their language seemned to be hunger, the moment the shaggy monster is per
made up. And these barbarians to the lette! ceived, they start like race-horses, with their
"showed us no little kindness," for they gave us tails erect, and sometimes days will élapse before some meat of zebras, which had died from drinking they are found.
the same water on the preceding day. This was
very acceptable ; for having fasted that day, we While travelling with the ambassadors of were all ready for a meal; and, though the poi, Mokhatla, the chief or king mentioned/ soned water had partially blunted my appctite, I above, he relates
enjoyed a steak of the black-looking flesh mingled
with its yellow fat. As we were retiring to rest one night, a lion! On leaving the next morning, I gave these poor passed near us, occasionally giving a roar, which people a good share of our sınall stock of tobacco, softly died away on the extended plain, as it which set them all dancing like Merryandrews, was responded to by another at a distance. Di- blessing our visit with the most fantastic gestures. recting the attention of these Balala to this sound, It grieved ine that, froin the want of an interpreter, and asking if they thought there was dan. I could say but little to them about Him who came ger, they turned their ears as to a voice withio redeem the poor and the needy. which they were familiar, and, after listening for These people had come down from the desert a moment or two, replied, " There is no danger; on the north in search of water, and were subsist. he has eaten, and is going to sleep.” They were ing by the chase, by catching a solitary animal in right, and we slept also.. Asking them in the a pit-fall, or else destroying it with water poisoned morning how they knew the lions were going to by an infusion of bulbs, or other roots. They were sleep, they replied, “ We live with them; they evidently living in some fear of the Corannas on are our companions."
the opposite side of the river, whose cattle form a
tempting wait to these hungry wanderers. Think. There is greater loss of human life from
ing, and justly too, that some part of the earth's the hyenas entering the towns and villages surface must be theirs, they naturally imagine that by night, and lying in wait at the pools if their game is shot, and their honey pilfered, they. whence the women and children fetch wa. have a right to reprisals, according to natural law, ter, than from the “ monarch of the wild," and therefore cannot resist the temptation of seizpon one occasion Mr Moffat ran more doning the property of their more wealthy neighbors,
when it lies within reach. ger from what are considered very ignoble animals—from baboons, than he ever had river called Quis or' Kwees, from which we in
Very gnoble On the seventh day we reached that part of the done from the lion. The whole passage is tended to go in a direct course to Griqua Town, full of beauty, and shows the author to be a leaving the Orange River far to the right. We · man who really need not fear to preach be- | had previously made inquiries about the country fore the most cultivated audience that Cape which lay between : some said there was water ; Town or any other town could furnish.
The others, that we should find none. We had eaten
a small portion of meat that morning, reserving When travelling towards Griqua Town, and only
own, and only enough for one single meal, lest we should Dear the Orange River, he had the following 1 yet no more ; and drank freely of water, to keep animating series of adventures:
I the stomach distended; and felt tolerably com
fortable. At night we came to some old huts, resolved to ascend a steep, where, from a precipice, where were remains of tobacco gardens, which had we might pelt liim with stones; for we had only a been watered with wooden vessels from the ad. couple of balls left. On dragging ourselves and joining river. We spent the evening in one of horses up the steep, we found the supposed refuge these huts; though, from certain holes for ingress too uneven for å standing place, and not one fragand egress, it was evidently a domicile for byenas, ment of luose stone to be found. Our situation and other beasts of prey. We had scarcely ended was now doubly dangerous ; for, on descending to our evening song of praise to Him whose watchful the path, the query was, on which side is the lion ? care had guided and preserved us through the day, My companion took his steel and flint, to try, by when the distant and dolorous howls of the hyena, striking them, if he could not discover traces of and the no less inharmonious jabbering of the he lion's paws on the path, expecting every mojackal, announced the kind of company with which ment that he would bound on one of us. The terwe were to spend the right; while, from the river, ror of the horses soon told us that the object of our the hippopotami kept up a blowing and snorting dread was close to us, but on the right side, wame. chorus. Our sleep was any thing but sweet. Only, in our rear. We instantly remounted, and con. the addition of the dismal notes of the hooting owl, Linued to pursue the track, which we had someone of our men remarked, “We want only the times great difficulty in tracing along its zig-zag lion's roar to complete the music of the desert." | windings, among bushes, stones and sand. The “ Were they as sleepy and tired as I am," said dark towering cliffs around us, the deep silence of another," they would find something else to do." which was disturbed by the grunt of a solitary ba. In the morning we found that some of these night boon, or the squalling of some of its young ones, scavengers had approached very near the door of added to the coloring of the night's picture. our hut.
We had not proceeded very far before the lion Having refreshed ourselves with a bath and a gave a tremendous roar, which, echoing from predraught of water, we prepared for the thirsty roadcipice to precipice, sounded as if we were within we had to traverse; but, before starting, a council a lion's den. On reaching the egress of the defile was held, whether we should finish the last small through which we had passed, we were cheered by portion of meat, which any one might have devour. the waning moon, rising bright in the east. De ed in a minute, or reserve it. The decision was scending again, we would gladly have laid our to keep it till evening. We sought in vain for ixia weary limbs down to rest; but thirst, and the posbulbs. Our only resource, according to the custornsibility of the lion's resolving to make his supper of the country, was to fill ourselves with as much on one of us, propelled our weary steps, for our water as our bodies could contain. We were horses were completely jaded. obliged to halt during the day, fearing our horses! We continued our slow and silent march for would give up, from the excessive heat. When hours. The tongue cleaving to the roof of the the evening drew on, we had to ascend and de- mouth from thirst, made conversation extremely scend several sand-hills, which, weary and faint difficult. At last we reached the long-wished for from two days' fasting, was to us exceedingly fa.“ waterfall," so named because, when it rains, tiguing. Vanderbyle and myself were somewhat water sometimes falls, though in small quantities; in advance of the rest, when we observed our three but it was too late to ascend ihe hill. We allowed companions remaining behind; but supposing they our poor worn-out horses to go where they pleased, staid to strike light and kindle their pipes, we and having kindled a small fire, and produced a thoughtlessly rode forward. Having proceeded little saliva by sinoking a pipe, we talked about our some distance we halted, and halloocd, but received lost companions, who happened for their comfort to no reply. We fired a shot, but no one answered. have the morsel of meat, and who, as Jantye We pursued our journey in the direction of the thought, would wander from the position in which high ground near the Long Mountains, through we left them towards the river. We bowed the which our path lay. On reaching a bushless plain, knee to Him who had mercifully preserved us, and we alighted, and made a fire : another shot was laid our heads on our saddles. The last sound we fired, and we listened with intense earnestness; I heard to soothe us, was the distant roar of the lion, but gloomy, desert silence reigned around. We but we were too much exhausted to feel any thing conversed, as well as our parched lips would allow, like fear. Sleep came to our relief, and it seemed on what must be done. To wait till morning would made up of scenes the most lovely, forming a glowonly increase the length of our suffering to retrace ing contrast to our real situation. I felt as if enour steps was impossible :- probably they had wan-gaged, during my short repose, in roving among dered from the path, and might never overtake us: ambrosial bowers of paradisaical delight, hearing at the same time we felt most reluctant to proceed. sounds of music, as if from angels' harps ; it was We had just determined to remain, when we the night wind falling on my ears from the neighthought we would fire one more shot. It was an- boring hill. I seemed to pass from stream to swered-by the lion, apparently close to the place stream, in which I bathed and slaked my thirst at where we stood. No wood was at hand to make a many a crystal fount, flowing from golden moun fire, nothing but tufts of grass ; 60 we ran, and retains enriched with living green. These Elysian mounted our horses, urging them on towards a range pleasures continued till morning dawn, when we of dark mountains, the gloom increasing as we awoke, speechless with thirst, our eyes inflamed, proceeded; but as our horses could not go much and our whole frames burning like a coal. We above a walking pace, we were in dread every mo- were, however, somewhat less fatigued, but wanted ment of being overtaken. If we drew up to listen, water, and had recourse to another pipe before we his approach in the rear was distinctly heard. On could articulate a word. reaching the winding glen or pass through the My companion then directed me to a project mountains, despairing of escape from our enemy, we / ing rock, near the top of the hill, where, if there