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though in general remarkably accurate, communicate nothing new to an English reader. His conclusions respecting the merits of our Indian rule are highly favourable :

The more I learn of England's mode of government here, the more I am compelled to admire the talent of the English for colonization. It is an error to suppose that the British power in India has attained its meridian height; on the contrary, there are everywhere indications of a further development, founded on duration and stability; but it may be affirmed, with equal confidence, that this immense empire is very far from having attained its concen. trated form, and reached its extreme boundary. It is not in the power of the English to say, “So far will we go, and no further;" the necessity of securing their own existence will compel them to make the Indus, or rather the Soliman mountains and the chain of the Himalaya, their boundary, and entirely to subdue the kingdoms in the interior. Want of nationality among the Indians, the despotic government of their princes, and the degenerate morals of their courts, will favour the attainment of this end, and the more gradually it is done, the less will be the sacrifices and the more inconsiderable the dangers.

With this extract we take leave of the work, which is written in a sober tone, and a pleasing style, and is disfigured by neither pedantry nor foppery.

The Bokhara Victims. By Captain GROVER, Unatt., F.R.S. London,

1845. Chapman and Hall. The history of the “ Bokhara Victims” will be regarded in aftertimes, as well as now, as a highly interesting incident in our transactions with the East. In its various features it combines the pleasing and the painful. The circumstances which conducted the two officers into the hands of the tyrannical Ameer; the fortitude with which they appear to have borne their sufferings, and the magnanimity with which they met their doom; the strange mystery so long overhanging their fate, and the chivalrous efforts made to ascertain it, so highly honourable to Captain Grover and Dr. Wolff, make an almost romantic tale.

This work contains a narrative of the adventures of Colonel Stoddart at Bokhara; some parts of which, particularly his first imprisonment, for two months, in the “dark well," are now for the first time made known. In this dungeon, his fellow-prisoners were two thieves and a murderer, and the place swarmed with ticks and disgusting vermin, especially reared to annoy the prisoners. “Many of the indignities my unfortunate friend was subjected to in this wretched prison,” observes Capt. Grover, “ were of such a horrid nature, that I have not ventured to publish them.” During his imprisonment, the executioner visited him with an order to put him to death if he did not embrace Islamism. Colonel Stoddart, his body and mind weakened by the sufferings he had undergone, to save himself from certain destruction, made the required profession of faith. When removed from the prison, he openly announced that he was a Christian, and that his avowal of Islamism was forced from him.

After he had been detained three years at Bokhara, Captain Conolly, then at Kokan, was induced to visit that city, where he arrived in November, 1841. The following month Captain Conolly was sent to prison with Colonel Stoddart, and they were both put to death, according to Dr. Wolff, who reports the fact from the mouth of the Ameer himself, in July, 1843, Saleh Mahomed having stated that their deaths had taken place in June, 1842. At the time, therefore, when Captain Grover began to agitate on behalf of his friend, these unfortunate officers were, as he supposed, alive.

: A large portion of Captain Grover's work is employed in exposing the alleged misconduct of the Foreign-office in this matter. He asserts that the British Government abandoned these officers to their fate, and he has very severely animadverted upon the Earl of Aberdeen for some part of his proceedings with reference thereto. We think that Captain Grover has taken an erroneous view of this subject, and that, even in the matter of the guarantee and bill of exchange, Lord Aberdeen never intended that his offer should bear the construction put upon it. However, every gentleman must be the judge in what concerns his own honour, but we could have wished that Captain Grover had been more abstemious in what he has published upon this head.

Adventure in New Zealand, from 1839 to 1844; with some Account of

the beginning of the British Colonization of the Islands. By EDWARD JERNINGHAM WAKEFIELD, Esq. Two vols. London, 1845. Murray.

To those who feel an interest in the foundation of a new settlement, -perhaps of a new empire,—these volumes will yield a fund of entertainment. Independently of the descriptions they contain of the manners and characteristics of wild races, shewn in contrast with those of civilized men, whilst the parties are engaged in the barter and purchase of the independence of one of them, they present remarkable adventures, extraordinary individuals, and human nature in positions and phases to which the occurrences of our own society offer nothing analogous. The history of the occupation of New Zealand is a new, and we may happily say an improved, edition of that of the conquest of America.

Savage life exhibits the same mixture of opposite characters which we witness in the life around us ; the pictures of the selfish, cruel, ambitious Rauperaha, and the bullying Rangihaeta, are relieved by those of the generous E Kuru, and the mild and courteous Puaha. It is mortifying to confess that, bad as are some of the blacks, worse examples are found amongst the whites with whom they come in contact, and that the ferocity of the savage is not moderated but increased by his intercourse with some of our countrymen, “the oppressors and brutalizers of the New Zealanders,” who teach them degrading vices of which they were before ignorant. We lament to read, too, in Mr. Wakefield's work,

many incidents related which tend to hold up the missionaries in these islands to censure, more especially the native teachers. The course taken by Mr.

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Wakefield (a young man), upon this head, was not in our opinion judicious. He says (vol. i. p. 173):

The conduct of the native teachers caused great indignation in my mind. I began to believe that this continued opposition to our proceedings really originated from the white missionaries; and being now able to make myself understood pretty well, told the natives my candid opinion of the unchristian tendency of these underhand proceedings. But I took care to tell them that the rangatira, or “chief” missionaries, would come out with the settlers, and behave very differently from those who incited them against us. I also explained to them that many of these bad missionaries were shoemakers or tailors, who received money from people in England to preach the gospel to them, but not to make them enemies to white people, and that the clergymen who were to accompany the settlers would preach to them and the white people together in one church.

“ Disputes between missions” and “missionary calumnies” are head ings in his book. The Protestant converts are excited against the Roman Catholics, or Pikapo, as sure to cut their throats;" in short, Christianity, in these islands, according to Mr. Wakefield, is unaccompanied by a Christian spirit.

Colonel Wakefield appears to have conducted the affairs of the company very skilfully throughout the trying negotiations with the native chiefs, with the missionaries, and those who from missionaries had be come land-jobbers,-or, as he calls them, “land-sharks,”—and lastly, with Governor Hobson. The unfortunate affair at Wairau, Cloudy Bay, which it was at one time apprehended would “overthrow a noble experiment to civilize and Christianize the aborigines on a comprehensive and statesmanlike plan,” is very minutely narrated.

Into the disputes between the New Zealand Company, and the behaviour of the present governor, Capt. Fitzroy, we have neither space nor inclination to enter. Those who may not share the opinions of the author with respect to these points, or the proceedings at Wairau, will still find enough in these volumes to enchain their attention and to gratify them.

Royal Asiatic Society. A meeting of this Society took place on the 15th of March; the Earl of Auckland in the chair.

A communication from Dr. Stevenson, of Bombay, on the Anti-Brah. manical Worship of the Hindus, in continuation of former papers on the same subject, was read. He commences by remarking upon the difficulties which surround any attempt to give a general view of the religion of India, or of arranging the deities composing the Hindu pantheon in a systematic form before the student of Hindu mythology. In his opinion, modern Hinduism is founded upon three different systems of religious belief,—the ancient Brahmanical, the Buddhistic, and the rude idolatrous worship of the aborigines of India. The great principles of the two first-mentioned systems are the same, namely, the importance ascribed to the Swabháva, or nature; the metempsychosis; and

final absorption. A triad of gods, Dr. Stevenson says, is altogether unautho rized by the ancient hymns of the Rig and Sama Vedas, the most ancient of the Brahmanical sacred books; that is, no three gods are there described as flowing immediately from deity. The only notion of a triad that appears in the Vedas is that of the three sacrificial fires which are lighted in the performance of sacrifice; the god of fire, Agni, being supposed preside in them all : in one, as the vivifying heat that supports the world; in another, as the sacred flame that licks up the sacrifice, and carries it forwards to the gods; and in the third, as the guardian deity of the sacrificer. There is no evidence that Siva was worshipped by the ancient Brahmans. The place that deity occupies in the Saiva system, and that of Vishnu in the Vaishnava system, were held in ancient times by Soma and Indra. It is not possible to trace any connection between the symbol of the linga, under which Siva is usually adored, and any of the ancient Brahmanical emblems. There is, indeed, an obscure intimation in the Linga Purána itself, that that worship was introduced at a late period. From these, and other considerations brought forward, Dr. Stevenson concludes that the worship of Siva is derived from the aboriginal Hindus, modified and adopted by the Brahmans for the sake of gaining an influence with the tribes who were previously addicted to it.

A meeting took place April 5th, Professor Wilson, the director of the Society, in the chair, when Frederick Schönerstedt, Esq., and Robert Garstin, Esq., were unanimously elected resident members.

Among the donations to the library laid upon the table at this meeting was a copy of the great Armenian Dictionary, printed under the auspices of the Armenian College at Venice, in 1836 and 1837; in two thick vols. 4to. It was presented to the Society by the archbishop of the College.

Mr. Norris, assistant secretary to the Society, laid before the meeting a reduced copy of the Kapur-di-Ghari inscription, prepared by him after minute collation of various copies and impressions brought to England by Mr. Masson; and the special thanks of the meeting were voted to Mr. Norris for his laborious and successful industry in producing so clear a transcript of that interesting record.

The honorary secretary brought before the meeting a dried specimen of a phosphorescent plant, sent to him, for the Society, by J. C. Morris, Esq., of Madras; accompanied by letters from General Cullen and Mr. White, of the medical establishment, giving some account of the plant and its habits. General Cullen states that this and several other specimens were brought to Trivandrum by a Tahsildar, who, being obliged to take refuge for the night under a large mass of rock, in the jungles, was surprised to observe all the grass in the vicinity exhibiting a vivid phosphoric light. The Brahmins of Trivandrum declared that the grass is described in their sacred books. A couplet in the Kumara Sambhava runs thus : “ To husbands who rove about the Himalaya mountains with their wives, and enter its caves, these plants serve in the night, at times of courtship, as lamps; burning without oil.” It is called Jyotish Mati, the ‘shining plant;' which appears to be the Cardiospermum Halicacabum of Linnæus. Two species are figured in Wight's Icones ; but they seem to be shrubs and climbers, while that described by the Tahsildar was a grass.

The root, on being well moistened with water, still retains the extraordinary property above mentioned; shining in the dark, with a pale white light, similar to that given out by stale fish. It possesses no smell.

The reading of a paper by W. Jameson, Esq., of the Bengal medical service, describing the great salt mines near Jelalpore, in the Punjab, was commenced.

19th April.— The Earl of Auckland in the chair. The reading of Mr. Jameson's paper on the Punjáb was concluded.

Dr. Hugh Falconer addressed the meeting in reference to the great inundation of the Indus (in 1841), to report on which the Indian Government had deputed Mr. Jameson to proceed to the Punjab, but who, in consequence of the disturbed state of the country, had not been able to reach within 150 miles of the place where the supposed stoppage in the river which caused the flood had taken place. Dr. Falconer thought it very desirable that all the facts relative to this remarkable occurrence should be collected and recorded. At present, very little was known of the causes which produced this great food. It appeared that, early in 1841, the stream of the Indus was observed to de. crease ; the decrease kept going on for more than two months; and above Attock, the bed of the river became dry. But all at once, without any previous warning, an enormous body of water came rolling onwards from the north, sweeping away every thing in its course. The town of Attock was at once destroyed, with hundreds of its inhabitants; and such was the force of the current, that even artillery guns were carried away by it. The inundation continued for six weeks, and brought down many bodies which were supposed to belong to the people of Little Thibet. When Dr. Falconer was in the last. mentioned country, he had learned from Achmet Shah that periodical floods occurred there in consequence of accumulations of ice; but the flood under dis. cussion did not appear to have arisen from such a cause. In his opinion, the great flood of the Indus resulted from the effects of an earthquake's having caused a landslip somewhere above Chinglee, which had stopped the course of the river, and formed a huge lake, the walls of which, however, had not been of sufficient tenacity or thickness permanently to withstand the force of the waters: hence the lamentable destruction which ensued. Dr. Falconer made some further observations on the extensive bed of rock-salt, underlying, in his opinion, the whole of the strata between the Hindu Kúsh and the Himalayas, passing under the Sewalik hills. This opinion was strengthened by the fact, that the same geological characteristics existed at the two points mentioned, especially the absence of coal, and the presence of bituminous shale and petroleum.

Professor Wilson announced the receipt of a communication from Major Rawlinson, accompanied by that gentleman's translation of the Bisitún Inscription, in the arrow-headed or cuneiform character, and comprising an edict of Darius Hystaspes. A précis of the contents of this inscription had been sent to the Society so long ago as 1840; but urgent political duties had hindered the major's investigations; he hoped now, however, to be able to conclude them. The translations sent were not intended for immediate publication ; but Major Rawlinson was anxious to have them publicly noticed, in order that he might secure to himself and this country the honour of the discovery.

Portions of the translation were then read to the meeting, by the honorary secretary; and the thanks of the Society were voted to Major Rawlinson for bis valuable communication.

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