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compass, the property of the magnet having been welt known to them, as it would appear, ages before the discovery of it in Europe,
their navigation is still confined to the practice of coasting from one headland to another: they have no sea charts. In contrary winds or stormy weather, their chief trust is in the goddess of the sea, who is named Matsoo-po, and with whose image every vessel is furnished. Carefully shut up in a shrine, and before it a lamp perpetually kept burning, cups of tea, and other offerings, are daily ministered. The care of the goddess is intrusted to the priest, who never ventures to appear before her with his face unwashed. The gross superstitions of the seamen, in which they have been educated, may admit of palliation; but the worthy missionary's account of their immoral character and conduct places them in a most disgusting point of view :
The Chinese sailors are, generally, from the most debased class of people. The major part of them are opium-smokers, gamblers, thieves, and fornicators. They will indulge in the drug till all their wages are squandered; they will gamble as long as a farthing remains ; they will put off their only jacket and give it to 'a prostitute. They are poor and in debt; they cheat and are cheated by one another, whenever it is possible ; and when they have entered a harbour, they have no wish to de part till all they have is wasted, although their families at home may be in the utmost want and distress.'-p. 61.
Gutzlaff describes his cabin as a hole only large enough for a person to lie down in, and to receive a small box. His sit fellow-passengers were all gamblers, opium-smokers, and versed in every species of villany. The principal officers of the ship were also in a constant state of stupor from inhaling the fumes of opium. It is only surprising that any of these floating machines, considering the ignorance, the confusion, and disorder that are said to prevail therein, ever arrive at their place of destination; no wonder that vast numbers of them are wrecked every year. The one in question, however, succeeded in coasting up to the Tartarian gulf of Leau-tong, and returned in safety. On reaching Namoh, on the coast of Fokien, the following heart-sickening scene was exhibited :
“As soon as we had anchored, numerous boats surrounded us, with females on board, some of them brought by their parents, husbands, or brothers. I addressed the sailors who remained in the junk, and hoped that I had prevailed on them, in some degree, to curb their evil passions. But, alas! no sooner had I left the deck, than they threw off all restraint; and the disgusting scene which ensued, might well have entitled our vessel to the name of Sodom. The sailors, unmindful of their starving families at home, and distracted, blinded, stupified by sensuality, seemed willing to give up aught and every thing they possessed, rather than abstain from that crime which en
tails tails misery, disease, and death. Having exhausted all their previous earnings, they become a prey to reckless remorse and gloomy.despair. As their vicious partners were opium-smokers and drunkards by custom, it was necessary that strong drink and opium should be provided; and the retailers of these articles were soon present to lend a helping hand. Thus, all these circumstances conspired to nourish vice, to squander property, and to render the votaries of crime most unhappy.'-p. 88.
Mr. Gutzlaff, however, consoles himself, in some measure, that, amidst such abominations, the feeble voice of exhortation was not entirely disregarded, and that some individuals willingly followed his advice-penetrated with a sense of guilt, and covered with shame. His visitors were very numerous: to some he distributed medicines, and to others the word of life. On shore, he observed most of the inhabitants in a state of great poverty, and many famishing for want of food, who greedily seized, and were thankful for, the smallest quantities of rice. Many, again, urged on by extreme poverty, had no other resource left than to become pirates, with whom the whole coast of China is infested, and who, during the night, frequently rob. and plunder the trading junks in the harbours. We could not have imagined that anything so deplorable could exist in the general condition of the people in the maritime provinces of this great empire, along such a great extent of coast-an empire in which, according to the often-quoted eulogy of the Jesuit missionaries, 'the hungry are fed, the naked clothed, the aged honoured ; and wherein all is happiness and harmony, under the most wise and benevolent government on the face of the earth, whose rulers watch over the people committed to their
charge with parental solicitude. The authors of the Encyclopédie · des Connoissances Humaines, carried away by the florid and lau
datory reports of the Catholic missionaries, persuaded themselves, or wished to persuade the world, that
the Chinese, who, by common consent, are superior to all the Asiatie nations in antiquity, in genius, in the progress of the sciences, in wisdom, in government, and in true philosophy, may, moreover, in the opinion of some writers, enter the lists, on all these points, with the most enlightened nations of Europe.' .
The sagacious Pauw of Berlin, however, took a very different view of the Chinese character; and the embassy of Lord Macartney stripped it of much of that false glare which had been thrown around this paragon of nations by the Jesuit missionaries at the court of Pekin.
If tried only by the single test of their conduct and feelings with regard to the softer sex, the Chinese, on this ground alone, could not be considered in any other light than as barbarians.
The higher classes are in the habit of purchasing females, who have previously been educated for sale, to serve as concubines, and to live under the same roof with their legitimate wives; but neither the concubines nor the wives are allowed to sit at the same table with, or even to appear in the presence of, their lord and master, either in the company of friends or strangers. Among the lower classes, the females of the most savage nations are not doomed to more degrading and slavish labour than are those of the Chinese. Like the females of savages, they are, moreover, as we have seen, frequently hired out by their fathers and husbands to the seamen of the junks that frequent the ports so frequently, indeed, that it occurred at almost every place where the vessel that carried Mr. Gutzlaff stopped-one alone excepted —where, he says, there was not, in the whole place, nor even in the circuit of several English miles, one female to be seen.' Being rather surprised at so curious a circumstance, he learned, on inquiry, that the whole female population had been removed by the civil authorities, with a view to prevent debauchery among the many sailors who annually visited this port.' Its name is Kin-chow, in the gulf of Leau-tong, on the coast of Mantchou Tartary.
The Chinese have long been accused of carrying the horrid practice of infanticide to a frightful extent. At the 'beach of Amoy,' says Gutzlaff, we were shocked at the spectacle of a pretty new-born babe, which shortly before had been killed. We asked some of the bystanders what this meant; they answered, with indifference, “ It is only a girl."' He says— .
It is a general custom among them to drown a large proportion of the new-born female children. This unnatural crime is so common among them, that it is perpetrated without any feeling, and even in a laughing mood; and to ask a man of any distinction whether he has daughters, is a mark of great rudeness. Neither the government nor the moral sayings of their sages have put a stop to this nefarious custom.'--p. 174. .
Mr. Ellis speaks of a Chinese philosopher, who, in writing on the subject of education, and alluding to the ignorance of their women, and the consequent unamiableness of wives, exhorts husbands not to desist from instructing them; for, 'says he, with a naïveté that marks the estimation in which he at least held the intellectual character of the sex,
even monkeys may be taught to play antics-dogs may be taught to tread a mill-rats may be taught to run round a cylinder-and parrots may be taught to recite verses. Since, then, it is manifest that even birds and beasts may be taught to understand human affairs, how much more. so may young wives, who, after all, are human beings.' ,
What a concession from a Chinese philosopher! It would seem, however, that there are places in China where the ladies are determined to exercise a freedom of action even beyond the usual privileges of the sex in more enlightened nations. At Ke-shan-so, a port in the province of Shan-tung, Mr. Gutzlaff tells us, the people seemed fond of horsemanship; and while we were here, the ladies had horse-races, in which they greatly excelled. This is so novel and so refreshing a feature in the female condition generally of China, that we could not forbear wishing the worthy missionary had been less costive in his narrative of so unusual a practice, and entered into some little detail of this branch of female art, such as the mode of training, riding, betting, and other important matters connected with the female turf-club of China,
There are, however, among the lower orders of Chinese some redeeming qualities. Froin a country so overflowing in population, where thousands annually perish for want, emigration takes place, to a great extent, to the several islands of the Indian Archipelago, to Siam, Malacca, Prince of Wales's Island, and Singapore. The affection of these poor people for their homes and their kindred is as strong as that of the Swiss; neither time nor distance can withdraw their attention from the beloved objects they left behind in their native land. A part of their hard earnings is carefully hoarded and annually remitted to their kindred left behind. If an emigrant can send but a dollar, he will do so, and will fast in order to save it. Every letter he writes must be accompanied by some token, however trifling. These favourable traits are particularly dwelt upon by Mr. Gutzlaff.
On the banks of the river Pei-ho, which leads to the neighbourhood of the capital, Mr. Gutzlaff's attention was drawn to the miserable condition of the trackers of the barges, which is described to be just the same as that in which they were found by the embassies of Lords Macartney and Amherst-ragged, halfnaked, and half-famished. • They were very thinly clothed, and seemed to be in great want; some dry rice, that was given to them, they devoured with inexpressible delight. The houses, whether of the rich or the poor, along the banks of this river are built of mud; those of the latter are miserable hovels of one apartment, most commonly having no other door but a screen of matting. “I had much conversation,' says Gutzlaff, ' with these people, who seemed to be rude but hardy, poor but cheerful, and lively but quarrelsome. The number of these wretched beings is very great; and many, it is said, perish annually by the cold of winter' yet it is under 40° of latitude. ... The vessel proceeded up the river as high as Tien-sing, near which are noticed those large and innumerable stacks of salto
an accumulation sufficient to supply the whole empire. While here, our missionary says he had thoughts of proceeding to Pekin; and why he did not afterwards at least attempt this is not clearly stated. A visit to the capital of the Chinese empire, he tells us, was an object of no little solicitude ; but he seems to be in doubt how this visit might be viewed by the Chinese government. Hitherto, he says, they had taken no notice of him, but it was expected the local authorities would now interfere. - Almost friendless, with small pecuniary resources, without any personal knowledge of the country and its inhabitants, I was forced to prepare for the worst.' We soon find him, however, in the Gulf of Petche-lee, on the frontiers of Tartary, distributing his tracts and his medicines among the natives, who appear to have been more kind and civilized than in the lower parts of the coast.
On the night of the 9th of November the wind changed to the north-west, and in a few hours the rivers and creeks were frozen up. The sailors consoled themselves with fighting quails, and smoking opium day and night. At length they bent their course to the southward, and in about three weeks arrived in safety at Canton. The long personal inconveniences and perils, the poverty and scantiness of food, consisting almost entirely of rice and salted vegetables, endured by this honest missionary, and his determined perseverance to spread the Scriptures among this heathen people, are the strongest tests of his sincerity ; ' it has long been,' he tells us, the firm conviction of his heart, that, in these latter days, the glory of the Lord will be revealed to China.'
The second voyage of Mr. Gutzlaff was in the ship Amherst, with Mr. Lindsay, some account of which we gave in a former Number,-on · The Free Trade with China. The first voyage brought him chiefly among the lower class of Chinese and Chinese seamen; but the second introduced him more largely into the society of mandarins and merchants. Among the latter there was a strong disposition to encourage commercial intercourse with strangers ; while the former used every means, open and concealed, to prevent it, and were generally successful. This aversion, however, did not proceed from any dislike to foreigners, but from the fear of loss of office, or other punishment, should any complaint reach the court of Pekin ; a circumstance which actually occurred, and the consequence was degradation and loss of place in two or three instances, where the officers did not succeed in driving away the barbarian ship.' Those persons hold their offices, their fortunes, and even their lives, at the mercy of their superiors; and the consequence is, that their whole conduct is but too generally a tissue of falsehood, hypocrisy, and duplicity. Every step they take is