Page images

parts of that extensive tract than in employing native terms. At page 81, others. They would not appear, how- for instance, when describing the

great ever, to be very numerous anywhere ; square in Khatmandu, he tells us that and though a considerable portion of the it'" is well paved, and contains the Kuchår is subject to the Ghoorkalis, the Chinese pagoda, composed entirely of Nepaulians procure the Kustoora principally from the vicinity of Neyat, Dhy: wood, from which it is said the town boon, and one or two other places. This

derives its name.' We should have animal is most usually caught by means expected him to know that Khatmanof a snare, made of a particular kind of du, or Kathipore, means “the town mountain bamboo, of which it is reported of wood,” (the original material of that the whole species is occasionally its construction,) with the name of blasted at once, not a single tree remain- which the temple has neither more ing that does not rapidly decay. The nor less to do than any other wooden blight, however, never happening till the edifice in the place. We are rather annual seed has fallen into the ground, curious to kuow where Mr Oliphant the plant is abundantly renewed in due picked up the remarkable piece of course of production. Very little pure information with which, a few lines musk is to be obtained at Khatmandu ; further on, he presents his readers : and there is still less exported from Nepaul. Indeed, I have been assured that

“ In Nepaul it is a rule that the death even the musk contained in the nâfeh, or

of one great animal should be immediately bag, still attached to the body of the followed by that of another ; and when animal, is not always found unadulterat

a Rajah dies, a rhinoceros is forthwith ed, and that its purity can only be relied killed to keep him company." on when the Kustoora is received directly as a present from some person on whose Surely some waggish Oriental has lands it has recently been caught." been amusing himself at the expense

of the smooth-faced Feringee. Having read this description of the Any reference to blunders naturally small animal which supplies the pre- reminds us of Captain Smith, whom cious perfume in niggard quantities, we left some pages back, clipping we hunted further, but in vain, for paragraphs from Kirkpatrick, and some mention of the musk-elephant, sticking them into his own dapper of which we had never before heard. duodecimos. After a while he lays We thought how delighted would be aside Kirkpatrick, turns to the NeMr Atkinson of Bond Street, and Mr Paul Blue Book, and from it concocts Smyth, of the Civet Cat, and other à sort of history of the Nepaulese proprietors of similar sweet-scented This fills about two hundred establishments, at this sudden and pages, and gets him well on into his enormous augmentation of their rc- second volume. “Nepaul, since the sources, for which they were doubtless war,” is dismissed in sixteen scanty indebted to the zoological zeal of the pages. Brief as these are, they young Cingalese jurist. Presently, abound in mistakes. Khatmandu is however, on examination of the con- printed Estnordoo; Mr Brian Hodgtext, our fragrant illusions were dis- son is Mr W. Hodgson ; the ex-king pelled. We had already been puzzled, of Nepaul is stated to be dead, which whilst reading Captain Egerton, by must be very recently, for only a few that officer's repeated mention of " à months ago he was all alive. But rogue elephant;" and it now struck us perhaps the Captain has been conthat the naval commander's “rogue," sulting a somnambulist. With his and Mr Oliphant's “musk," were in- opportunities, as political assistant tended to designate the state of sexual in Nepaul for five years, how easy madness in which an elephant is said ought it to have been for Captain to be must. We cannot sufficiently Smith to have produced a really laud the playful and exquisite delicacy good and useful book, which should of the sea-captain, at the same time have worthily succeeded Kirkpatrick that we admonish the proctor to rub and Hamilton. We hope some day up his Oordoo, and to correct, in any to witness the appearance of such future edition of his book, the not a work. Nepaul and Khatmandu unfrequent errors he has committed are far-off places and outlandish when writing names of places and names, known until lately but to




few; yet they are not without in- ries, we cannot but anticipate, that at terest to all who heed the prosperity no very distant date, when Jung Baand progress of our Indian empire. hadoor shall perhaps bave passed It is an ancient tradition-and in away from the scene-victim of fierce the minds of all Hindoos the belief insurrection or bloody feud–Nepaul, still lurks — that from Nepaul will the Switzerland of the East, shall proceed the liberation of India from acknowledge, like its neighbours, the the European yoke; that thence will supremacy of Britain. The prospect, be struck the first blow at English even if remote, of such a continpower in the East. We smile at gency, gives unquestionable interest the absurdity of the notion as we and importance to that rich and fercompare a map of India in Warren tile region; and should stimulate to Hastings' time and one of Arrow. the task of its description writers smith's of the same regions at the more competent, careful, and conpresent day; and whilst noting the scientious, than the majority of those vast spread, in the interval, of the with whose works we to-day have " British pink” defining our territo- had to deal.

THE CELESTIALS AT HOME AND ABROAD. THE greatest social phenomenon of at this critical period of its starving the present day is Emigration; and and discontented masses, society itself the myriads of the human race who would perish in the convulsion? And are now precipitating themselves from does not the attractive glitter of Gold one region of the world to another, direct this Exodus, as the pillar of rival in number and outvie in power cloud and fire guided the Israelites of even the countless hordes who from age yore, away from the old seats of civito age, in early times, submerged the lisation into the desert-places of the mighty empires of the South. " Time world, there to accomplish the Diwas, time is, and time shall be again,” vinely ordained mission of our race, was the oracular response of the to “replenish the earth and subdue Brazen Head of Friar Bacon ; and it?” The age of Gold, like the age now the cycle of ages has brought of Emigration, has again dawned upon round again the Emigrating Era of the world ; an age how different from mankind. But how different is the that dreamed of by the poets! but an modern phenomenon from that which agency more grand and world-widemarked its track of yore in characters more fraught with present changes of blood and fire! In ancient times and future blessings-than any which the flood of emigration rolled from the poetic imagination has ever conthe Desert, but now from the heart ceived. The golden legend first whisof Civilisation ;-then it dashed its pered to wondering ears on the banks barbaric waves against all that man, of the Sacramento, has now filled the by long centuries of toil, had achieved wide world with its fame. The golden in power and knowledge ; but now it Apparition that first was seen standdiffuses itself peaceably, everywhere ing, beckoning from afar, by the lone spreading abroad the crowning know- shores of the Pacific, has now drawn ledge to which our race has hitherto all men after it, and established an attained ; – then its object was to empire where four years ago there plunder the wealth of man, now it is was a solitude. And what was the to develop the riches of nature. great design of this Californian dis

To the reflecting eye, the working covery, but to empty the labour-marof that mighty Hand that guides the kets of the Eastern States of the world was never more observable in Union in order to make room for the human affairs than now. Is it need- starving myriads of Ireland, who, in ful to say why Gold and Emigration their turn, left an opening in the now stand out prominently as the Emerald Isle for the energy and Promoving impulses of mankind? Is it testantism of the Anglo-Saxons. It not evident that Europe is labouring opened a ready asylum in the New in the throes of a mighty social expe- World for the proscribed, ruined, or riment, and that unless it were relieved frightened refugees from the Revolu

tions of Europe ; and, as if in antici- in a little island of the West, has pation of some still greater crisis yet come to throw its mighty arms around to come, Australia, groaning under a the whole world ? plethora of new-found wealth, starv- But Providence ever attains the ing Crasus-like in the midst of her greatest ends by the simplest means ; gold, cries aloud to Europe for men and the same agency of Gold wbich is to till her fields, to tend her flocks, or so remarkably influencing the destito satiate their restless energies by nies of Europe, promises to accomplish the exploration of her fifteen hundred a phenomenon, less important, it may miles of auriferous mountains. That be, but even more astounding, for the her call is already being answered, Asiatic world. The disasters resultany one may see at a glance. What ing to China from its late war with city of our own country but is now us,—the increase of taxes—the injury sending forth her hundreds, what to commerce and employment in certown her tens, what village or hamlet tain provinces of the Empire—and the of the land but has some family or general unsettling of large masses of individual bound for the land of pro- the people, as well as the partial infumise ? And, what is worthy of notice, sion of European ideas in the maritime the emigration-fever-like all fevers districts,-have greatly broken up the when they become epidemic-has now apathy and stay-at-home spirit of the mounted from the lower classes to the Celestials; and no sooner did news of higher; and the same relief seems the gold-discoveries reach Canton, about to be afforded to our world of than the mania seized upon them also; clerks, and milliners, and better arti- and the remarkable spectacle was sans, as has already relieved the pres- witnessed of a nation which had kept sure, and kept up the wages, of our itself apart from the rest of mankind suffering peasantry.

since the Deluge, coming forward to There is one remarkable and signi- compete with its fellow-races_for ficant fact connected with the recent the spoils of the earth. The Hergold-discoveries. They have all been mit Nation came forth from its cell made “ in the uttermost parts of the into the world, to wonder and be earth," and within the bosom or on wondered at—but above all, to work, the shores of an ocean of all others and to show that there is an industry the least whitened by the sails or and intelligence in the population of cheered by the presence of civilised China which some even of the Euroman. Although abounding with islands pean nations would do well to acquire. and archipelagos transcendent alike “Quite a large number of the Cefor beauty and productiveness—where lestials," said a Californian journal a Nature has been enriching the soil by year ago," have arrived among us of the fall of the leaf throughout five- late, enticed bither by the golden and-forty centuries, where sun and romance which has filled the world. breeze, wood and water, shore and Scarcely a ship arrives here that does sea, present endless prizes to the not bring an increase to this worthy enterprise of civilisation,-nomaritime integer of our population ; and we power, no sea-loving people, has hear, by China papers, and private ever arisen upon the shores of the advices from that empire, that the Pacific Ocean. From the dawn of feeling is spreading all through the history, that longest of the earth's sea-board, and, as a consequence, sea-boards has sent forth no navy to nearly all the vessels that are up for explore, and occupy, and reclaim the this country are so for the prospect fertile isles and semi-continents which of passengers. A few Chinamen compose that sixth division of the have returned, taking home with them globe which we now entitle Oceanica. some thousands of dollars in CaliforDoes it not seem as if those vast nian gold, and have thus given an ocean-realms have been reserved by impetus to the spirit of emigration Providence until now, in order that from their fatherland which is not they might become the empire of that likely to abate for some years to free Anglo-Saxon race, which, cradled


* Daily Alta California, May 12, 1851.

Hitherto, the Chinese who left and of such labour China is both their own country generally found willing and anxious to yield an uutheir way in native vessels to Borneo, limited supply. An experiment to Siam, and the Straits, where their test the practicability of importing situation has not always been safe or Chinese labourers into Cuba was satisfactory, and their junk voyages made about four years ago, when almost invariably attended with great there were introduced into Havanna risk, as well from pirates of divers 581 Coolies from Amoy-638 having nations as from the common perils of embarked there, and 57 having died of the sea. Despite these difficulties, on the passage and in quarantine. however, for several years past a large These labourers were distributed and rapidly increasing emigration of among various planters as apprenChinese labourers has taken place tices, receiving four dollars each ato different parts of the adjoining month. At the commencement, several islands and countries, amongst others of the masters were dissatisfied with to Singapore, -the emigration to which them, but experience soon proved dependency of the British Crown was their value; and recently, a number chiefly conducted in the following sin- of the most intelligent proprietors in gular manner:—The owner of a native Cuba, consulted by the local authojunk engages with a number of free rities, declared that they had found but penniless Chinese to convey them the Chinese in their service “laborito Singapore, upon the understanding ous, robust-almost as much so as that, on their arrival at that port, the best Africans,—more intelligent, they will each engage with such resi- and sufficiently docile, under good dents as are in want of servants or management.' They moreover exlabourers, to work for them for a cer- pressed themselves desirous that imtain period without other remunera- migration should be encouraged, and tion than board and lodging, the par- ready to take a certain number into ties so engaging them paying as an their employment; and some of them equivalent the amount of their pas- deem it quite possible to cultivate sage-money from China; the length their properties with Chinese excluof servitude thus freely, and on both sively. In consequence, a contract sides cheerfully, bargained for, being has been made a few months ago by dependent on the relative state of an English house (Syme, Muir, & Co. supply and demand. This mode of of Amoy) to introduce eight thousand obtaining labour by private enterprise Coolies into the island, and the entire has proved quite successful, and has number is by this time subscribed for been carried on, to some extent, for – the planters engaging to pay the many years, with the sanction of the importers at the rate of 125 dollars British authorities, and to the satis- a-head- the Coolies to be apprenfaction and profit of shipowner, em- ticed for eight years, and to receive ployer, and employed.

four dollars a-month each during the The reports of those Chinamen who time of their service. We understand first returned from California to their that there is every prospect of such own country, of the good reception emigration assuming a permanent and they had met with there, and of the increasing character, and one of the perfect security of the voyage when best-informed of our English firms made in the ships of the Foreigners, (W. P. Hammond & Co. of London) gave an incalculable impulse to the entertain "great hopes that the doemigration-fever of the Celestials; and cility and usefulness of the free agrithey are now finding their way, in cultural labourers of the province of great and increasing numbers, not only Fokhien, in China, will be the means to California, but to Australia, Cuba, at no distant time of entirely superand our West Indian colonies. To seding slavery in the great island of these latter, a supply of labour suited Cuba." to a tropical climate is a desideratum A desire to avail themselves of a of primary importance, if we would similar arrangement has already been not see those magnificent islands irre- evinced by the planters in British mediably relapse, as they are fast Guiana, and in other of the West India

state of wilderness, - colonies; and the avidity with which the Chinese would embrace such an number of free labourers than the opportunity of honest industry, may, whole west coast of Africa could furperhaps, be best evidenced by the nish of slaves. Moreover, an immense following extract from the private proportion of the Chinese contrive to letter, dated in March last, of a British exist only by means of the most hard merchant settled at Amoy :


and unflagging labour,- living from “ We have just despatched a vessel

hand to mouth, and devouring everywith 410 labourers for Honolulu, Sand- thing, however unclean in our eyes, wich Islands. They were all fine, strong, which can conduce to the keeping able-bodied young men, engaged for three together of soul and body. A bad to five years at three dollars per month, season, or an overflowing of their with food, &c., for men, and at two to canals and rivers, reduces millions to two-and-a-half dollars per month for absolute starvation, from which all boys. “The only sorrowful parties were those

the efforts of the Imperial Governwhom we were compelled to reject from myriads perishing, from such causes,

ment are insufficient to extricate them disease or deformity. These we placed a distinguishing mark upon, but this they every fourth or fifth year. It is a removed, and presented themselves for work, then, of pure benevolence to selection three or four times. We were both the Chinaman and the Negro, if obliged to send them from alongside in you can at once relieve the hunger of hundreds, and the last day the rush was the former and preserve the freedom so great we thought they would have of the latter,-if you can convey the almost taken the vessel from us. This one to those fields of remunerative demand for labour is a most providential industry which are to him a Paradise, thing for this prorince, the pocerty and and retain the other in his cherished destitution of which is incredible.

deserts from which there is so little Here, then, we have, on the one temptation to remove him. hand, a starving population of Celes- Australia is another field to which tials craving for employment, and, on Chinamen have begun to flock, and the other, valuable estates capable of where their services are almost equally adding to the wealth of the British desirable. They have a most acute Empire by the production of immense scent for anything in the shape of quantities of sugar, cotton, coffee, &c., money, and the temptation of the aurialmost going out of cultivation, and ferous Blue Mountains of Sydney was their formerly affluent proprietors more than Chinese nature could resist. praying for the very labour which is so In the Australian intelligence conearnestly asking for employment; and tained in the Times of 19th March is it possible that prejudice or a mis- last, we read, that “many cargoes of taken philanthropy will be allowed to Chinamen have been sent for, and step in and prevent an interchange of one shipload had just arrived. They benefits so mutually desirable? We will be employed at good wages as cannot think it. Any one who does shepherds, while thousands of honest not believe in the Voltairian doctrine families in England are yearning for that the world is ruled by Chance, the means of procuring the same admust be struck with the cheering coin- vantage, and that, not as paupers, cidence that this very period, when but with a feeling that they would for the first time the final extinction of faithfully make repayment.” The the African slave-trade seems almost hardship to our own countrymen so within our reach, should be the season correctly expressed by the Times is at which Providence is throwing open now greatly removed, by the steps to the world the immense supplies of recently taken to facilitate their paslabour which for thousands of years sage to the sheepwalks and gold-fields it has been rearing secinded in a dis- of our Antarctic possessions; and no tant corner of Asia. China Proper and one can doubt their great superiority its dependencies contain some three to the Chinese, — not, perhaps, in hundred and sixty millions of inhabi- patient industry and thriftiness, but tants—considerably above one-third in most of the qualities which characof the whole population of the globe- terise a good subject and citizen in a and could furnish, out of its mere free state. floating population, a much larger Australia, with her unrivalled stores

« PreviousContinue »