Abbildungen der Seite

same neighbourhood conveys the disagreeable intelligence of several hundred men having assembled near the banks of the Jumna for the sake of plundering." The same paper, however, acknowledges that much has been done by the police battalions, and especially the portion consisting of Major Ferris's Affghans (who fought so gallantly under him in Affghanistan), in hunting out and bringing to justice several of the more atrocious followers of the Jeitpore rajah.

Of the local incidents at the presidencies we can select few that are worthy of such a distinction. Entertainments were rather numerous during the month; besides that to the late Governor-General at Calcutta, a splendid dinner was given by the society of Simla to the Commander-in-Chief, on the 19th July, the anniversary of the last and most brilliant action fought in China, and the capture of Cheang-kwang-foo; and a grand ball and supper at Bombay to Sir Henry Pottinger, August 23rd. Upon the latter occasion, the chairman, Mr. Crawford, senior member of council, gave a sketch of the services of Sir Henry, in which he took occasion to deny in emphatic terms the statement, put forth by "dissatisfied spirits, interested, it was to be feared, in the maintenance of evils which it had been Sir Henry's endeavours to put an end to," that the Government at home disapproved of his conduct; whereas he had received "the entire and unqualified approbation of her Majesty and her confidential advisers of all his acts." We regret to have seen in the Hong-kong papers some remarks upon the administration of Sir Henry, discovering a very bitter spirit; and still more to observe this hostility referred in a Bombay paper to private motives. If Sir Henry Pottinger has, in the proper execution of his very difficult and invidious office, provoked the enmity of individuals, the public will protect him from its effects-it is a testimony to his resolution and his honesty.

The Bombay papers contain a long report of a very long trial of eighteen Parsees for the murder of one of their own nation, on account of a grudge arising out of some disputes connected with their newspapers. It appears that the Chabook, conducted by Nowrojee Dorabjee, and the Jami Jamsheed, edited by Pestonjee Manuckjee, are the organs of two factions, which are on terms of deadly hatred. Muncherjee Hormusjee, the deceased, was employed in the office of the Chabook, and the act was a savage, cold-blooded, meditated assassination, perpetrated in the open day, by twenty or thirty men, armed with clubs and knives, and in the presence of many others, who made no effort to rescue the victim, or call in the police. What is still worse, the greatest difficulty was experienced in obAsiat.Journ.N.S.VOL.IV.No.19.


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

taining witnesses, and those who were induced to come forward, including Parsee priests, were guilty of the most unblushing perjury, avowing that they swore falsely through apprehension of the prisoners and their friends. Such were the bulk and contradictory nature of the evidence, that the Chief Justice occupied twelve hours in summing it up. The jury consulted for two hours, and found ten of the prisoners guilty of wilful murder. Sentence of death was immediately passed upon four; the other six were condemned to transportation for life. After the sentence, however, petitions were presented to the Chief Justice,-one by the counsel, suggesting legal doubts, and another from 2,000 natives, denying the facts stated by the witnesses. In consequence, examinations were taken, affidavits made, and disclosures volunteered, and the Judge was induced to respite the sentence of all the culprits except one; and, from the depositions, it is very doubtful whether it would be safe to punish any of the other nine convicted prisoners!



گفت روباه بچه با روباه

ده آگاه كاي ز مكر سكان

بازيي كن كنون مرا تعليم که بدان از سگم نباشد بیم

گفت ازان بازيي نه بینم به که تو در دشت باشي او در ده

چشم وي بر تو چشم تو بر وي
نه افتدت در پي
بکشد گر نه حق شود یاور


پوستینت زپشت و پوست ز سر



IN first turning over the six numbers of Dr. von Siebold's Archive, we flattered ourselves that they contained a genuine specimen of Japanese literature, translated by Dr. Hoffmann, collated with and tested by Mr. Medhurst's English translation of a Corean version of the Japanese original. It turns out, however, that the work, entitled the Book of a Thousand Words, is a well-known elementary Chinese work, translated into Corean and Japanese; the Corean by Mr. Medhurst, and the Chinese original by Dr. Hoffmann, using the Japanese and English versions to test his own accuracy. It is, therefore, needless to notice this book, which, though prodigiously admired in Dai Nippon, is no specimen of the literary genius of the Japanese. Dr. Hoffmann says:

"Respecting the age of the Book of a Thousand Words, we find conflicting opinions. According to Japanese history, the Chinese scholar Wang-shin, who was invited from the Corean peninsula to the Court of the Mikado, as the primary teacher of the language and literature of the central empire, brought the book to Japan A.D. 285. Its unknown author is supposed to have lived during the reign of Han-Chang-te (from A.D. 76 to 88). According to another view, imported long afterwards from China, the origin of this book is of much later date, and it is ascribed to a certain Chen-hing-sze, who lived during the reign of Leang-Woo-te (from A.D. 502 to 549), and wrought it out from a sketch of the erudite Wang-shin; a contradiction which Sansi, an old Japanese translator of this work, strives to reconcile by the assertion that there have been two books of the same name, and that the last has entirely superseded the first. The plan of the book is an anthology from the oldest Chinese literature. It consists of metrical rhymed propositions, of four and four words each, put together with such poetic audacity, and often so elliptically, that some familiarity with Chinese literature, and with the favourite ideas of this nation, is requisite in order to arrange logically complete, and render intelligible, such detached or broken propositions. One Japanese editor of this work (one of many Japanese translations) announces at the conclusion thirty other various editions."

We have another translated work, but as it is historical, we think as much of the geography, or rather statistics, as can interest the general reader, may conveniently precede it. In this paper, the doctor confines himself to the island of Kiusiu, and all details chiefly to the principality of Fizen, as best known to the members of the factory.

Kiusiu is of volcanic formation, and has four craters; they nevertheless produce annual earthquakes, besides the indications of hot springs, &c. Fizen is very mountainous; to it belongs the Wunzen volcano; indeed its name, Fizen, expresses the position of the land relatively to the volcanic fire ;* but it is, notwithstanding, very fertile,

* Asiatic Journal, vol. xxix. p. 189.

the steepest mountains being cultivated to a very considerable height. For this purpose they are formed into terraces, supported by walls, in which rice is grown, as the precipitous banks of the Rhine are built into vineyards. Irrigation is accomplished by a skilful diversion of mountain rills to supply these rice-fields with the due quantity of inundation. Whether the acknowledged superiority of the Japanese rice be owing to this singular mountain-cultivation, is not stated. Fizen owes part of its wealth to its shape; it is all promontory and bay, besides the 1,016 islands comprised within its limits, and its coast abounds in fish, especially the valuable awabi (Haliotis). It is the shell of the awabi, and not ordinary mother-of-pearl, that is employed in the glittering parts of Japanese lackerwork, and the fish itself, accounted, when dried, a prime dainty, is exported to China to the value of £3,000 per annum.

The inhabitants of Fizen, as of Kiusiu generally, Siebold divides into two almost distinct races. Those of the coast and islands, fishermen and sailors, of course, he describes as comparatively small and dark, with black hair, curly, and often nearly woolly, and a more highly Tartar physiognomy, modified by a touch of the Negro. Corporeally they are adroit; mentally, persevering, bold, frank, good-humoured, and obliging, even to servility. The inland-born, mostly agriculturists, are larger and fairer, with a slight tendency to red hair. They are temperate, industrious, devout, good-natured, generous, and hospitable; but, like their betters, intolerably ceremonious. The upper classes in all the cities, except Miyako, are pretty much alike, because they all are, and must be, educated at Yedo, whence they possess the high polish of the capital. Even second-rate officials, having there begun their career in inferior posts, have acquired a considerable portion of its polish, and more of its corruption; since they live through their youth in that paradise of the Yedoites, the notorious Yosihara street, returning premature old men to their native provinces. The sons of considerable merchants are usually educated at Ohosaka; where, as the Swede Thunberg, nearly three-quarters of a century ago, called it a second Paris, we may conjecture that they find similar resources, if inferior in style; but we may also be permitted to hope that the destined traders are earlier called home from this island of Circe or Calypso to attend to business.

But this observation does not apply to Miyako, which possesses ample means of educating all her children at home. "At Miyako, simple manners still prevail, maintaining freshness of mind and purity of heart, whilst they foster the arts and sciences, which especially flourish in the Mikado's own city."

In glaring contrast to this pleasing picture stands Nagasaki, the most corrupt and the least national city in the empire. The character of Nagasaki has suffered from the infection of Chinese cunning and rapacity, and the coarseness of European sailors; and is further debased by the throngs of the craftiest traders in Japan, who are naturally attracted to the only seat of foreign commerce. Even the language

has not escaped these baleful influences; it is so interlarded with Chinese, as to be well nigh unintelligible to visitors from Nippon and Sikok. Much of Chinese manners, whether for the better or the worse, has likewise been gradually adopted: the lantern-festival is Chinese, and in Japan pretty nearly confined, it should seem, to Nagasaki, where more flesh meat is consumed than in any other city of Dai Nippon.

The principality of Fizen appears to comprise some smaller principalities, as well as some lordships held immediately of the Ziogoon; but what authority, if any, the prince of Fizen exercises over them, is not explained. His revenue amounts to nearly as much as all theirs together, being £357,000 sterling a year. Kokura, where the Dutch embark for Nippon, is the residence of the prince of Buzen, whose principality is quite independent of, and unconnected with, Fizen, though inferior to it in power and magnitude. But our perplexity concerning the relative positions of the prince of Fizen and his minor princes is certainly not relieved by discovering in Buzen, besides the reigning prince, whose income amounts to £150,000, and a prince of Omi, his relation, with an income of only £10,000 a year, a prince of the house of Satzuma, the power and wealth of which house have appeared in former papers.* And this prince, who holds his court in the second city of the principality, and enjoys an income of £100,000 a year, proves to be the very individual who was indulged with the Dutch name of Frederik Hendrik, and therefore a son of the reigning prince of Satzuma, and a brother-in-law of the Ziogoon.t

We now proceed to the historical portion of these numbers, in which Siebold has given us both the Japanese original and a German translation of a work which seems to partake both of a chronological table and an historical abridgement. The author's name is Asiya Yamabito, and that of the work Wa nen kei, of which title we have two translations; at the head of the German version it is rendered "Historic Tables," upon the title-page of the original "Succinct Japanese Annals." This is, we imagine, about the newest Japanese historical work, since it comes down to the year 1822. To censure it as dry, were altogether supererogatory, that being implied in what has been already said of its nature; but still we may shew its character by selecting from the wearisome series of brief entries such as refer to points in Japanese history and manners worthy of notice :

Years B.C.

667. Zin mu marches with his army from the west. This prince, who in his lifetime bore the name of honour, Fiko Fobodeni (as a child, his name had been Sano), was the fourth son of Fiko Nakisatake Ukaya fuki avasezuno mikoto, by Tamayori fime (the last pair of terrestrial gods), born in the seventh year of the thirty-third Chinese cycle. On account of his brilliant qualities, he was chosen as heir to the throne in his fifteenth year; married Afira tsu fime, and resided, to the age of forty-four, in a palace on the mountain Takatsifo, in Fiuga (a province of Kiusiu).

*Asiatic Journal, N.S, vol. xxx. p. 95, and vol. xxxi. p. 116.

† Id. vol. xxix. p. 283.

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »