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two independent versions, made by two different &c., I carried off. Their cities I burned with fire, persons, without any communication with each other, destroyed, and overthrew. such agreement must indicate that the versions Hincks.-At that time I went to a disaffected part had at least truth for their basis. The inscription of Qummukh, which had withheld the tribute by selected for the purpose, a cylinder recording the weight and tale belonging to Assur, my lord. I achievements of Tiglath-pileser,* was exceedingly well subdued the land of Qummukh as far as it extended. suited for a comparison of this description, as it treats I brought out their women, their slaves, and their of various matters, changing abruptly from one to the cattle; their towns I burned with fire, threw down, other, and abounds in proper names, and statements and dug up. of specific facts.
Oppert.-In these days I went to the people of Upon the receipt of this communication, the council Dummukh, the enemy who owed tributes and gifts to of the Society resolved that immediate measures should the god Asur, my lord. I subdued the people of be taken to carry into effect the comparison suggested Dummukh for its punishment (?). I took away their by Mr Talbot, but on a more extended scale. With captives, their herds, and their treasures; their cities this view, it was determined to request Sir Henry I burnt in fire; I destroyed, I undermined them. Rawlinson, Dr Hincks, and Dr Oppert to favour the The mere verbal expression of the purport of the Society with translations of the same inscription, to above versions is certainly as close as could reasonbe sent, like Mr Talbot's, under a sealed cover, so that ably be expected from four different translations of all four might be simultaneously opened, and compared any modern language. In some instances, however, by a committee appointed for the purpose. Applica- the translators admitted that certain passages were tion having been made to the above-named gentlemen, obscure, and, indeed, the values of several common and they having heartily responded to the views of Assyrian words still remain to be established. Thus, the Society, a committee, consisting of the Dean of where Pileser records his hunting exploits, Rawlinson St Paul's, Dr Whewell, Sir Gardner Wilkinson, Mr makes the game wild buffaloes ;' Hincks, wild Grote, Mr Cureton, and Professor H. H. Wilson—than elephants ;' while Talbot, not venturing a translation, whom none better adapted could have been chosen, retains the original word, .amsi.' But in the general were requested to examine, and compare the four sense of killing or taking alive wild animals of some versions of the same inscription made by four different kind or other, they are all agreed. In a dead language, persons, in distant places, without mutual communi, and more especially in one like the Assyrian, where cation; and to determine how far these versions agreed symbolic signs are frequently used instead of phonetic in their general sense, and in the specific meanings letters, it is only natural to suppose that some words assigned to the words.
and names of persons, animals, or objects would be The four translations having been forwarded to the uncertain. Still, the occasional differences among the Society, and carefully examined by the committee, the four translators, in the mode of interpreting certain latter, having strictly compared them, certified that words and sentences, may be accepted as a guarantee the coincidences between the translations, both as to -if such were required—of the complete fairness of the general sense and verbal rendering, were very the undertaking, particularly when we find that those remarkable.' In most parts, they found a strong differences are uniform; the words or sentences so correspondence in the meaning assigned, and occasion- varying, having the same meaning assigned to them ally a curious identity of expression as to particular wherever they occur. A fair example of agreement words. Where the versions differed very materially, and disagreement will be found in the following several each translator had, in many cases, marked the passage translations of the closing paragraphs of the inscripas one of doubtful or unascertained signification. In tion, in which imprecations are denounced upon any the interpretation of numbers, there was throughout a future monarchs who may in any way deface the singular correspondence.'
stone-engraven records of the mighty Tiglath: By all the translators, the inscription was under- Rawlinson.—Whoever shall injure my tablets and stood to relate to King Tiglath-pileser, to his cam- cylinders, or shall moisten them with water, or scorch paigns, building and consecration of temples, and other them with fire, or expose them to the air, or in the royal acts ; campaigns against nations bearing names holy place of God shall assign them a position where mostly analogous to those known from the sacred they cannot be seen or understood, or who shall erase writings, and from other ancient authorities; temples the writing and inscribe his own name, or who shall to deities with appellations bearing the same resem- divide the sculptures (?), and break them off from my blance to those found in other quarters. There was a tablets, Anu and Vul, the great gods my lords, let constant recurrence of these words, names, and titles, them consign his name to perdition; let them curse yet a sufficient variety of words to test, to a certain him with irrevocable curse ; let them cause his degree, the extent of the knowledge claimed by the sovereignty to perish; let them pluck out the stability translators of the sound of the words, and of the of the throne of his empire. language to which the words are supposed to belong. Talbot.—But he who my stone tablets and my As a specimen of the inscription, and a fair average memorial records shall injure, or shall destroy them : sample of the general concurrence existing among the with water shall efface them : or with fire shall confour translations, the following versions of the same sume them: or shall deface the writings: or shall passage, with the names of the translators, may not write his name (instead of mine): or shall cut away the be altogether devoid of interest to the reader:
emblems : or who shall break in pieces the face of my Rawlinson.-Then I went on to the country of tablets : May Anu and Yen, the great gods, my lords, Comukha, which was disobedient and withheld the utterly confound him; may their curses fall upon him; tribute and offerings due to Ashur my lord; I con- may they sweep away his kingly power; may his quered the whole country of Comukha. I plundered enemies carry off his royal throne. their movables, their wealth, and their valuables. Hincks.He who shall hide or obliterate my tablets Their cities I burned with fire, I destroyed and and my floors shall wander on the waters, shall be ruined.
suspended in the fires, shall be besmeared with earth, Talbot.--I then advanced against Kummikhi, a land shall be assigned by adjudication an unpleasant place in of the unbelievers who had refused to pay taxes and the excellent house on high. He shall survive few tribute unto Ashur, my lord. The land of Kummikhi years, and shall write his name where some enemy shall throughout all its extent I ravaged. Their women, speedily deface it, and shall have it (that is, the tablet
containing it) broken against my tablets! May Anu * 2 Kings, xv. 29; xvi. 7, 10.
and Iv, the great gods, my lords, energetically punish him! and may they curse liim with a destroying curse! | at a given time, and at a cheap rate, our sashes and May they depress his kingdom! may they remove mantel-pieces receive their due. the throne of his dominion.
The south-western counties supply a goodly proOpperl.--He who hides or defaces my tablets, and portion of our Christmas ; a considerable quantity my angular stones, who throws them into the water, comes even from Wales ; large quantities from the who burns them with fire, who spreads them to the neighbourhood of Bromley, Seven Oaks, and Maidwinds, who transports them to the house of death, to stone. The weald of Kent also furnishes its quota; a place without life, who steals the cylinders (?), who railways are called to lend a hand; and at length the engraves on them his name, and . . . . who injures mighty mass arrives at market, fresh, and but few my tablets : May Anu and Ao, the great gods, my berries the worse. lords, load his name with infamy; may they curse him Market-gardeners, and others connected with London with the worst imprecations ! May they subdue his markets, tempted by the certain sale, keep a watchfal sister ; may they deport the districts of his kingdom. eye during the year on all shrubberies, ready at a.
Upon the whole, the result of this very curious moment's notice to drive a bargain; and at the same experiment--than which a fairer test could not, in all time, in all probability, from prudent thinning, to probability, be devised-may be considered as estab- improve the hedge. lishing, almost definitely, the correctness of the valu. Small hucksters range the country some time before ation of the characters of the Assyrian cuneiform Christmas, and bargain for holly, as it stands, to be inscriptions; and though it be quite possible that cut and cleared at their convenience. These, in their further researches may find something to alter or to turn, sell to larger dealers, who consign to their London add, still the greater portion, if not the whole of those customers; and thus, through divers channels, and remarkable records, may now be read with entire wheels within wheels, we decorate our sashes and our confidence. The almost invariable concurrence of the mantel-shelves. translators in the general sense, proves that they are It is holly-morning at Covent Garden. The Tuesday agreed to give the same interpretation to the greater before Cliristmas is sacred to the work. During the portion of the vocabulary. At the same time, the whole of the preceding night, wagons have been pourdifferences shew that a good deal remains to being in from all quarters, until every avenue to the effected ere the sense of every individual term can be market is choked up. Bedford Street and James confidently rendered. Where so much, however, has Street are alone set apart for the vehicles of buyers. been accomplished in so short a period, and under such Every other nook and corner is jammed and crammed extraordinary difficulties, there surely is every reason with carts and wagons, piled up as high as the to hope that the remaining uncertainties will ultimately second-floor windows with stacks of green-stuff
. and speedily be overcome. At all events, the ancient In some parts, to save space, wagons are backed to Assyrian language, with its grotesque, arrow-headed the kerb, and are wedged together the whole length character, so inexplicable but a few years past, is, at the of the street; and with other contradictory arrangepresent time, nothing more than an unravelled mystery. ments, and no arrangements at all, a stranger, once
within the meshes of the evergreen labyrinth, has THE MISLETO E-BOUGH.
but one thing to care for--and that is, how to find his EVERY occupier in London, whether of house, floor, St Paul's clock has chimed four-in a pitch-dark or attic, strains a point at Christmas to adorn his morning and the ball opens in earnest. The eager sashes and mantel-pieces with holly; and the hook in salesmen stalk round the green stacks, flashing links the ceiling, suggestive of a chandelier, but generally fixed to the top of twelve-feet poles, and loudly used to support the fly-trap, bears at this season descanting on the quality of their loads. Compared the misletoe, and renders even the otherwise drear with theirs, the cloquence of Cheap Jacks and George and chilly two--pair back a scene, for the time, of Robinses sink into insignificance. They are assisted cheerfulness and mirth.
by two small boys, indispensable to every load, who As to the demand and supply, no one troubles him- are perched aloft on the stacks, and whose business self to consider from whence these masses of green it is to fish up, with long sticks, tempting bunches, stuff come. If the question is asked, the reply is which they hold out on end, with loud yells, and prompt: ‘Petty larceny and the suburbs of the metro- so serve to illustrate the florid statements of the polis.' This appears to be the conviction of all. Now, salesman below. Amongst the buyers are found a the larceny must be pretty extensive, as well as the large sprinkling of the fair sex, and these in nowise suburbs, to supply our wants in this respect; and if the most incapable of driving shrewd and hard even the churches alone depended on these sources, bargains. At this time of the year, shops open later ill-fated Clapham and Haverstock Hill would have a than usual. Husbands have taken the late trade and rare time of it, and Leicester Square would soon shutting-up business, whilst wives retire early, and surpass them in rural appearance and verdure. take the morning market.
But if we give the subject a moment's consideration, The bunches are bundled and weighed, and both our curiosity will be awakened, and we shall be sent the quantity of berries ascertained and the consefurther afield, in quest of more extensive areas from quent freshness of the stuff; and it would excite no whence to draw our Christmas garnishings than small surprise in the mind of a novice to see the amount those so commonly suggested. Our supply of holly of hard bargaining involved in the sale of that which and misletoe does not come promiscuously ;' it is a many people believe may be had for the trouble of matter of commerce, and, as such, is regulated by asking. the same rules and precise arrangements as the other Loads of misletoe come to market worth thirty pounds branches of our conimercial economy. Our require- each. The retail price ranges from one shilling and ments in this particular are as surely anticipated and sixpence to three half-crowns per bunch; holly from carefully calculated as any other of our social wants ; ninepence to three shillings per bundle. Prices vary, and the metropolitan supply of what is generally of course, each season, dependent on the abundance or described by the general term of Christmas,' is as scarcity of the articles. The present season has been zealously cared for as the providing of our Christmas a prolific one, and prices have ruled accordingly. beef or summer strawberries. No deficiency is ever It is now near seven o'clock, and the exhortations of felt—no residue is left. The supply is adjusted to the the salesmen, the yells of the boys, the murmur of the demand, and the trade is of sufficient importance to crowd, and the imprecations of the porters as they engage men of capital and business minds; and thus endeavour to urge their heavy loads through the living
masses, are by this time halt wearisome and half at-that fact could not be questioned—and by some appalling, and the stranger finds it desirable to escape one, whom my follower--under the uncertain light of from the scene.
the gloomy forest, and blinded by his fears--had taken Nine o'clock, and the masses of evergreens have for Yellow Jake. Of course this was a fancy-a melted away; an hour or two later, and our houses are mistake as to the personal identity of our unknown decorated with their Christmas,' and the faces of the enemy. There could be no other explanation. busy Londoners brighten into smiles as they find Ha! why was I at that moment dreaming of himthemselves once more under the misletoe-bough. of the mulatto? And why such a dream? If I were
to believe the statement of the black, it was the very
realisation of that unpleasant vision that had just OG EOLA:
passed before me in my sleep.
A cold shuddering came over me-my blood grew
chill within my veins--my flesh crawled, as I thought CHAPTER XXV.-WHO FIRED THE SHOT?
over this most singular coincidence. There was some‘Yellow Jake?' I repeated, in the usual style of thing_awful in it--something so damnably probable, involuntary interrogative-of course without the that I began to think there was truth in the solemn slightest faith in my companion's statement. “Saw allegation of the black; and the more I pondered upon Yellow Jake, you say?'
it, the less power felt I to impeach his veracity. Yes, Massr George,' replied my groom, getting a Why should an Indian, thus unprovoked, have little over his fright: 'sure as de sun, I see 'im-eytha singled me out for his deadly aim ? True, there was 'im or 'im ghost.'
hostility between red and white, but not war. Surely Oh, nonsense! there are no ghosts : your eyes it had not yet come to this? The council of chiefs deceived you under the shadow of the trees. It must had not met---the meeting was fixed for the following have been an illusion.'
day; and, until its result should be known, it was not * By Gor! Massr George,' rejoined the black with likely that hostilities would be practised on either side. emphatic earnestness, 'I swar I see 'im—'twant no Such would materially influence the determinations of daloosyun, I see—'twar eytha Yell’ Jake or 'im ghost.' the projected assembly. The Indians were as much • Impossible!'
interested in keeping the peace as their white adver*Den, massr, ef’t be unpossible, it am de troof. saries—ay, far more indeed—and they could not help Sure as da gospel, I see Yell’ Jake; he fire at you knowing that an ill-timed demonstration of this kind from ahind tha gum-tree. Den I fire at 'im. Sure, would be to their disadvantage--just the very pretext Massr George, you hear boaf de two shot ?'
which the removal' party would have wished for. True; I heard two shots, or fancied I did.'
Could it, then, have been an Indian who aimed at "Gollys! massr, da wa’nt no fancy 'bout 'em. my life? And if not, who in tle world besides had a Whugh! no-da dam raskel he fire, sure. Lookee motive for killing me? I could think of no one whom da, Massr George! What I say? Lookee da!' I had offended-at least no one that I had provoked to
We had been advancing towards the pond, and were such deadly retribution. now close to the magnolia under whose shade I had The drunken drovers came into my mind. Little slept. I observed Jake in a stooping attitude under would they care for treaties or the result of the the tree, and pointing to its trunk. I looked in the council. A horse, a saddle, a gun, a trinket, would direction indicated. Low down, on the smooth bark, weigh more in their eyes than the safety of their I saw the score of a bullet. It had creased the tree, whole tribe. Both were evidently true bandits—for and passed onward. The wound was green and fresh, there are robbers among red skins as well as white the sap still flowing. Beyond doubt, I had been fired ones. at by some one, and missed only by an inch. The But no; it could not have been they? They had leaden missile must have passed close to my head not seen us as we passed, or, even if they had, they where it rested upon the valise-close to my ears, could hardly have been upon the ground so soon? We too, for I now remembered that almost simultaneously had ridden briskly, after leaving them; and they were with the first report, I had heard the wheep' of a afoot. bullet.
Spence and Williams were mounted; and from what • Now, you b'lieve um, Massr George ?' interposed Jake had told me as we rode along in regard to the the black with an air of confident interrogation. Now past history of these two rowdies,' I could believe you b’lieve dat dis chile see no daloosyun?'
them capable of anything—even of that. • Certainly, I believe that I have been shot at by But it was scarcely probable either: they had not
seen us; and besides they had their hands full. ‘Yell' Jake, Massr George! Yell' Jake, by Gor!' Ha! I guessed it at last; at all events I had hit earnestly asseverated my companion. 'I seed da upon the most probable conjecture. The villain was yaller raskel plain's I see dat log afore me.'
some runaway from the settlements, some absconding *Yellow skin or red skin, we can't shift our quarters slave-perhaps ill-treated—who had sworn eternal too soon. Give me the rifle : I shall keep watch while hostility to the whites; and who was thus wreaking you are saddling. Haste, and let us be gone!' his vengeance on the first who had crossed his path.
I speedily reloaded the piece; and, placing myself A mulatto, no doubt; and, may be, bearing some behind the trunk of a tree, turned my eyes in that resemblance to Yellow Jake-for there is a general direction whence the shot must have come. The similarity among men of yellow complexion, as among black brought the horses to the rear of my position, blacks. and proceeded with all dispatch to saddle them, and This would explain the delusion under which my buckle on our impedimenta.
companion was labouring; at all events, it rendered I need not say that I watched with anxiety—with his mistake more natural; and with this supposition, fear. Such a deadly attempt proved that a deadly whether true or false, I was forced to content myself. enemy was near, whoever he might be. The suppo- Jake had now got everything in readiness; and, sition that it was Yellow Jake was too preposterous. without staying to seek any further solution of the I, of course, ridiculed the idea. I had been an eye- mystery, we leaped to our saddles, and galloped away witness of his certain and awful doom; and it would from the ground. have required stronger testimony than even the solemn We rode for some time with the beard on the declaration of my companion, to have given me faith shoulder ;' and, as our path now lay through thin either in a ghost or a resurrection. I had been fired I woods, we could see for a long distance behind us.
A FRONTIER FORT.
No enemy, white or black, red or yellow, made his Fancy, then, such a stockade fort. People it with appearance, either on our front, flank, or rear. We a few hundred soldiers—some in jacket uniforms of encountered not a living creature till we rode up to faded sky-colour, with white facings, sadly dimmed the stockade of Fort King ; * which we entered, just with dirt (the infantry); some in darker blue, bestriped as the sun was sinking behind the dark line of the with red (artillery); a few adorned with the more forest horizon.
showy yellow (the dragoons); and still another few in the sombre green of the rifles. Fancy these men lounging about, or standing in groups, in slouched
attitudes, and slouchingly attired - a few of tidier The word 'fort' calls up before the mind a massive aspect, with pipe-clayed belts and bayonets by their structure, with angles and embrasures, bastions and sides, on sentry, or forming the daily guard-some battlements, curtains, casemates, and glacis--a place of half-score of slattern women, their laundress-wives, great strength, for this is its essential signification. mingling with a like number of brown-skinned squaws Such structures have the Spaniards raised-in Florida --a sprinkling of squalling brats--here and there an as elsewhere—some of which are still standing,† while officer hurrying along, distinguished by his dark-blue others, even in their ruins, bear witness to the grandeur undress frock* - half-a-dozen gentlemen in civilian and glory that enveloped them at that time, when garb-visitors or non-military attachés of the fortthe leopard flag waved proudly above their walls. a score less gentle-looking-sutlers, beef-contractors,
There is a remarkable dissimilarity between the drovers, butchers, guides, hunters, gamblers, and colonial architecture of Spain and that of other idlers—some negro servants and friendly IndiansEuropean nations. In America, the Spaniards built perhaps the pompous commissioner himself-fancy all without regard to pains or expense, as if they believed these before you, with the star-spangled flag waving that their tenure would be eternal. Even in Florida, above your head, and you have the coup d'æil that they could have had no idea their lease was to be so presented itself as I rode into the gateway of Fort short-no forecast of so early an ejectment.
King. After all, these great fortresses served them a purpose. But for their protection, the dark Yamassee, Of late not much used to the saddle, the ride had and, after him, the conquering Seminole, would have fatigued me. I heard the reveille, but not yet being driven them from the flowery peninsula long before ordered on duty, I disregarded the call, and kept my the period of their actual rendition.
bed till a later hour. The United States has its great stone fortresses; but The notes of a bugle bursting through the open far different from these are the “forts' of frontier phrase- window, and the quick rolling of drums, once more ology, which figure in the story of border wars, and awoke me. I recognised the parade music, and sprang which at this hour gird the territory of the United from my couch. Jake at this moment entered to States as with a gigantic chain. In these are no grand assist me in my toilet. battlements of cut rock, no costly casemates, no idle Golly, Massr George !' he exclaimed, pointing out ornaments of engineering. They are rude erections of by the window : 'lookee dar! dar's tha whole Indy-en hewn logs, of temporary intent, put up at little ob tha Seminole nayshun-ebbery red skin dar be in expense, to be abandoned with as little loss-ready to ole Floridy. Whugh!' follow the ever-flitting frontier in its rapid recession. I looked forth. The scene was picturesque and
Such structures are admirably adapted to the impressive. Inside the stockade, soldiers were hurrypurpose which they are required to serve. They are ing to and fro--the different companies forming for types of the utilitarian spirit of a republican govern- parade. They were no longer, as on the evening ment, not permitted to squander national wealth on before, slouched and loosely attired; but, with jackets such costly toys as Thames Tunnels and Britannia close buttoned, caps jauntily cocked, belts pipe-clayed Bridges, at the expense of an overtaxed people. To to a snowy whiteness, guns, bayonets, and buttons fortify against an Indian enemy, proceed as follows: gleaming under the sunlight, they presented a fine
Obtain a few hundred trees; cut them to lengths of military aspect. Officers were moving among them, eighteen feet; split them up the middle; set them in distinguished by their more splendid uniforms and a quadrangle side by side, flat faces inward; batten shining epaulets; and a little apart stood the general them together; point them at the tops ; loophole himself, surrounded by his staff
, conspicuous under eight feet from the ground; place a staging under large black chapeaus with nodding plumes of cock's the loopholes ; dig a ditch outside; build a pair of feathers, white and scarlet. Alongside the general bastions at alternate corners, in which plant your was the commissioner-himself a general-in full cannon; hang a strong gate—and you have a frontier government uniform. forti'
This grand display was intended for effect on the It may be a triangle, a quadrangle, or any other minds of the Indians. polygon best suited to the ground.
There were several well-dressed civilians within the You need quarters for your troops and stores. Build enclosure, planters from the neighbourhood, among strong block-houses within the enclosure-some at the whom I recognised the Ringgolds. angles, if you please ; loophole them also—against the So far the impressive. The picturesque lay beyond contingency of the stockade being carried; and this the stockade. done, your fort is finished.
On the level plain that stretched to a distance of Pine-trees serve well. Their tall, branchless stems several hundred yards in front, were groups of tall are readily cut and split to the proper lengths; but Indian warriors, attired in all their savage fineryin Florida is found a timber still better for the pur- turbaned, painted, and plumed. No two were dressed pose—in the trunk of the cabbage palm.'I These, exactly alike, and yet there was a similarity in the from the peculiarity of their endogenous texture, are style of all. Some wore hunting-shirts of buckskin, less liable to be shattered by shot, and the bullet buries with leggings and moccasins of like material-all proitself harmlessly in the wood. Of such materials was fusely fringed, beaded, and tasselled; others were clad Fort King.
in tunics of printed cotton stuff, checked or flowered,
with leggings of cloth, blue, green, or scarlet, reaching * Called after a distinguished officer in the American army. from hip to ankle, and girt below the knee with beadSuch is the fashion in naming the frontier posts.
† Forts Picolata on the St Johns, Fort San Augustine, and others at Pensacola, St Marks, and elsewhere.
* An American officer is rarely to be seen in full uniform-still Chamorops palmetto.
more rarely when on campaigning service, as in Florida.
embroidered gaiters, whose tagged and tasselled ends silent. It is not their character to be so; for the hung down the outside of the leg. The gorgeous Seminole is as free of speech and laughter as the wampum belt encircled their waists, behind which clown of the circus ring; even the light-hearted negro were stuck their long knives, tomahawks, and in some scarcely equals him in jovialty. instances pistols glittering with a rich inlay of silver- It was not so now, but the very reverse. Chiefs, relics left them by the Spaniards. Some, instead warriors, and women-even the boys who had just of the Indian wampum, encircled their waists with forsaken their play-all wore an aspect of solemnity. the Spanish scarf of scarlet silk, its fringed ex- No wonder. That was no ordinary assemblagetremities hanging square with the skirt of the tunic, no meeting upon a trivial matter—but a council at adding gracefulness to the garment. A picturesque which was to be decided one of the dearest interests of head-dress was not wanting to complete the striking their lives—a council whose decree might part them costume; and in this the variety was still greater. for ever from their native land. No wonder they Some wore the beautiful coronet of plumes—the did not exhibit their habitual gaiety. feathers stained to a variety of brilliant hues; some It is not correct to say that all looked grave. In the 'toque' of checked bandanna ;' while others that semicircle of chiefs were men of opposite views. wore shako-like caps of fur—of the black squirrel, the There were those who wished for the removal—who bay lynx, or racoon-the face of the animal often had private reasons to desire it—men bribed, suborned, fantastically set to the front. The heads of many or tampered with-traitors to their tribe and nation. were covered with broad fillets of embroidered wam- These were neither weak nor few. Some of the pum, out of which stood the wing-plumes of the king- most powerful chiefs had been bought over, and had vulture, or the gossamer feathers of the sand-hill crane. agreed to sell the rights of their people. Their treason A few were still further distinguished by the nodding was known or suspected, and this it was that was plumes of the great bird of Afric.
causing the anxiety of the others. Had it been otherAll carried guns—the long rifle of the backwoods wise-had there been no division in their ranks—the hunter, with horns and pouches slung from their patriot party might easily have obtained a triumphant shoulders. Neither bow nor arrow was to be seen, decision; but they feared the defection of the traitors. except in the hands of the youth-many of whom The band had struck up a march-the troops were were upon the ground, mingling with the warriors. in motion, and filing through the gate.
Further off, I could see tents, where the Indians Hurrying on my uniform, I hastened out; and took had pitched their camp. They were not together, but my place among the staff of the general. scattered along the edge of the wood, here and there few minutes after, we were on the ground, face in clusters, with banners floating in front-denoting the to face with the assembled chiefs. different clans or sub-tribes to which each belonged. The troops formed in line, the general taking his
Women in their long frocks could be seen moving stand in front of the colours, with the commissioner by among the tents, and little dark-skinned "papooses' his side. Behind these were grouped the officers of were playing over the grassy sward in front of them. the staff, with clerks, interpreters, and some civilians
When I first saw them, the warriors were assembling of note-the Ringgolds, and others-who, by courtesy, in front of the stockade. Some had already arrived, were to take part in the proceedings. and stood in little crowds conversing, while others Hands were shaken between the officers and chiefs ; strode over the ground, 'passing from group to group, the friendly calumet was passed round; and the as if bearing words of counsel from one to the other. council at length inaugurated.
I could not help observing the upright carriage of these magnificent men. I could not help admiring their full free port, and contrasting it with the gingerly step of the drilled soldier! No eye could have looked upon both without acknowledging this superiority of First came the speech of the commissioner. the savage.
It is too voluminous to be given in detail. Its chief As I glanced along the line of Saxon and Celtic points were, an appeal to the Indians to conform soldiery-starched and stiff as they stood, shoulder to peaceably to the terms of the Oclawaha treaty-to shoulder, and heel to heel--and then looked upon the yield up their lands in Florida-to move to the west plumed warriors without, as they proudly strode over to the country assigned them upon the White River the sward of their native soil, I could not help the of Arkansas-in short, to accept all the terms which reflection, that to conquer these men we must needs the government had commissioned him to require. outnumber them!
He took pains to specify the advantages which would I should have been laughed at had I given expres- accrue from the removal. He painted the new home sion to the thought. It was contrary to all experience as a perfect paradise-prairies covered with game, elk, contrary to the burden of many a boasting legend of the antelopes, and buffalo-rivers teeming with fishborders. The Indian had always succumbed ; but was crystal waters, and unclouded skies. Could he have it to the superior strength and courage of his white found credence for his words, the Seminole might antagonist? No; the inequality lay in numbers— have fancied that the happy hunting-grounds of his oftener in arms. This was the secret of our superiority: fancied heaven existed in reality upon the earth. What could avail the wet bowstring and ill-aimed On the other hand, he pointed out to the Indians shaft against the death-dealing bullet of the rifle ? the consequences of their non-compliance. White men
There was no inequality now. Those hunter- would be settling thickly along their borders. Bad warriors carried the fire-weapon, and could handle it white men would enter upon their lands; there would as skilfully as we.
be strife, and the spilling of blood; the red man would The Indians now formed into a half-circle in front be tried in the court of the white man, where, accordof the fort. The chiefs, having aligned themselves ing to law, his oath would be of no avail ; and therefore so as to form the concave side of the curve, sat down he must suffer injustice! upon the grass. Behind them, the sub-chiefs and Such were in reality the sentiments of Mr Commore noted warriors took their places, and still further missioner Wiley Thompson,* uttered in the council of back, in rank_after rank, stood the common men of Fort King, in April 1835. I shall give them in his the tribes. Even the women and boys drew near, own words: they are worthy of record, as a specimen clustering thickly behind, and regarding the movements of fair dealing between white and red. Thus spoke he: of the men with quiet but eager interest. Contrary to their usual habits, they were grave and
* Historically true.