Infomotions, Inc.Round the World / Carnegie, Andrew, 1835-1919



Author: Carnegie, Andrew, 1835-1919
Title: Round the World
Publisher: Project Gutenberg
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Title: Round the World

Author: Andrew Carnegie

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ROUND THE WORLD

BY ANDREW CARNEGIE




PREFACE


It seems almost unnecessary to say that "Round the World," like
"An American Four-in-Hand in Britain," was originally printed for
private circulation. My publishers having asked permission to give
it to the public, I have been induced to undertake the slight
revision, and to make some additions necessary to fit the original
for general circulation, not so much by the favorable reception
accorded to the "Four-in-Hand" in England as well as in America,
nor even by the flattering words of the critics who have dealt so
kindly with it, but chiefly because of many valued letters which
entire strangers have been so extremely good as to take the
trouble to write to me, and which indeed are still coming almost
daily. Some of these are from invalids who thank me for making the
days during which they read the book pass more brightly than
before. Can any knowledge be sweeter to one than this? These
letters are precious to me, and it is their writers who are mainly
responsible for this second volume, especially since some who have
thus written have asked where it could be obtained and I have no
copies to send to them, which it would have given me a rare
pleasure to be able to do.

I hope they will like it as they did the other. Some friends
consider it better; others prefer the "Four-in-Hand." I think them
different. While coaching I was more joyously happy; during the
journey round the World I was gaining more knowledge; but if my
readers like me half as well in the latter as in the former mood,
I shall have only too much cause to subscribe myself with sincere
thanks,

Most gratefully,

THE AUTHOR.




  "Think on thy friends when thou haply see'st
   Some rare, noteworthy object in thy travels,
   Wish them partakers of thy happiness."




ROUND THE WORLD.

NEW YORK, Saturday, October 12, 1878.

Bang! click! the desk closes, the key turns, and good-bye for a
year to my wards--that goodly cluster over which I have watched
with parental solicitude for many a day; their several cribs full
of records and labelled Union Iron Mills, Lucy Furnaces, Keystone
Bridge Works, Union Forge, Cokevale Works, and last, but not
least, that infant Hercules, the Edgar Thomson Steel Rail
Works--good lusty bairns all, and well calculated to survive in
The struggle for existence--great things are expected of them in
The future, but for the present I bid them farewell; I'm off for
a holiday, and the rise and fall of iron and steel "affecteth me
not."

Years ago, Vandy, Harry, and I, standing in the very bottom of the
crater of Mount Vesuvius, where we had roasted eggs and drank to
the success of our next trip, resolved that some day, instead of
turning back as we had then to do, we would make a tour round the
Ball. My first return to Scotland and journey through Europe was
an epoch in my life, I had so early in my days determined to do
it; to-day another epoch comes--our tour fulfils another youthful
aspiration. There is a sense of supreme satisfaction in carrying
out these early dreams which I think nothing else can give, it is
such a triumph to realize one's castles in the air. Other dreams
remain, which in good time also _must_ come to pass; for
nothing can defeat these early inborn hopes, if one lives, and if
death comes there is, until the latest day, the exaltation which
comes from victory if one but continues true to his guiding star
and manfully struggles on.

And now what to take for the long weary hours! for travellers know
that sight-seeing is hard work, and that the ocean wave may become
monotonous. I cannot carry a whole library with me. Yes, even this
can be done; mother's thoughtfulness solves the problem, for she
gives me Shakespeare, in thirteen small handy volumes. Come, then,
my Shakespeare, you alone of all the mighty past shall be my sole
companion. I seek none else; there is no want when you are near,
no mood when you are not welcome--a library indeed, and I look
forward with great pleasure to many hours' communion with you on
lonely seas--a lover might as well sigh for more than his
affianced as I for any but you. A twitch of conscience here. You
ploughman bard, who are so much to me, are you then forgotten? No,
no, Robin, no need of taking you in my trunk; I have you in my
heart, from "A man's a man for a that" to "My Nannie's awa'."

       *       *       *       *       *

PITTSBURGH, Thursday, October 17.

What is this? A telegram! "Belgic sails from San Francisco 24th
instead of 28th." Can we make it? Yes, travelling direct and via
Omaha, and not seeing Denver as intended. All right! through we
go, and here we are at St. Louis Friday morning, and off for Omaha
to catch the Saturday morning train for San Francisco. If we miss
but one connection we shall reach San Francisco too late. But we
sha'n't. Having courted the fickle goddess assiduously, and
secured her smiles, we are not going to lose faith in her now,
come what may. See if our good fortune doesn't carry us through!

       *       *       *       *       *

OMAHA, Saturday, October 19.

All aboard for "Frisco!"

A train of three Pullmans, all well filled--but what is this shift
made for, at the last moment, when we thought we were off? Another
car to be attached, carrying to the Pacific coast Rarus and
Sweetzer, the fastest trotter and pacer, respectively, in the
world. How we advance! Shades of Flora Temple and "2.40 on the
plank road!" That was the cry when first I took to horses--that
is, to owning them. At a much earlier age I was stealing a ride on
every thing within reach that had four legs and could go. One
takes to horseflesh by inheritance. Rarus now goes in 2.13-1/4,
and Ten Broeck beats Lexington's best time many seconds. I saw him
do it. And so in this fast age, second by second, we gain upon old
Father Time. Even since this was written more than another second
has been knocked off. America leads the world in trotters, and
will probable do so in running horses as well, when we begin to
develop them in earnest. Our soft roads are favorable for speed;
the English roads would ruin a fast horse.

We traverse all day a vast prairie watered by the Platte. Nothing
could be finer: such fields of corn standing ungathered, such
herds of cattle grazing at will! It is a superb day, and the
russet-brown mantle in which Nature arrays herself in the autumn
never showed to better advantage; but in all directions we see the
prairies on fire. Farmers burn them over as the easiest mode of
getting rid of the rank weeds and undergrowth; but it seems a
dangerous practice. They plough a strip twenty to thirty feet in
width around their houses, barns, hay-stacks, etc., and depend
upon the flames not overleaping this barrier.

Third night out, and we are less fatigued than at the beginning.
The first night upon a sleeping-car is the most fatiguing. Each
successive one is less wearisome, and ere the fifth or sixth comes
you really rest well. So much for custom!

       *       *       *       *       *

SUNDAY, October 20.

All day long we have been passing through the grazing plains of
Nebraska. Endless herds of cattle untrammelled by fences; the
landscape a brown sea as far as the eye can reach; a rude hut now
and then for a shelter to the shepherds. No wonder we export beef,
for it is fed here for nothing. Horses and cattle thrive on the rich
grasses as if fed on oats; no flies, no mosquitoes, nothing to
disturb or annoy, while the pellucid streams which run through the
ranches furnish the best of water. There can be no question that our
export trade is still in its infancy. The business is now fully
organized, and is subject to well-known rules. At Sherman we saw the
large show-bills of the Wyoming County Cattle Raisers' Association,
offering heavy rewards for offenders against these rules, and the
Cheyenne _Herald_ is filled with advertisements of the various
"marks" adopted by different owners. Large profits have been made in
the trade--the best assurance that it will grow--but from all I can
gather it seems doubtful whether the experiment of exporting cattle
alive will succeed.

We saw numerous herds of antelope to-day, but they graze among the
cattle, and are altogether too finely civilized to meet our idea of
"chasing the antelope over the plain;" one might as well chase a
sheep. As night approaches we get higher and higher up the far-famed
Rocky Mountains, and before dark reach the most elevated point, at
Sherman, eight thousand feet above tide. But our preconceived
notions of the Rocky Mountains, derived from pictures of Fremont _a
la_ Napoleon crossing the Alps, have received a rude shock; we only
climb high plains--not a tree, nor a peak, nor a ravine; when at the
top we are but on level ground--a brown prairie, "only this, and
nothing more."

       *       *       *       *       *

TUESDAY, October 22.

Desolation! In the great desert! It extends southward to Mexico
and northward to British Columbia, and is five hundred miles in
width. Rivers traverse it only to lose themselves in its sands,
there being no known outlet for the waters of this vast basin.
What caverns must exist below capable of receiving them! and
whither do they finally go?

At the station we begin to meet a mixture of Chinese and
Indians--Shoshones, Piutes, and Winnemuccas. The Chinamen are at
work on the line, and appear to be very expert. At Ogden we get
some honey grapes--the sweetest I ever tasted. It is midnight
before we are out of the desert.

We are up early to see the Sierras. My first glimpse was of a
ravine resembling very much the Alleghany Gap below
Bennington--going to bed in a desert and awaking to such a view
was a delightful surprise indeed. We are now running down the
western slope two hundred and twenty-five miles from San
Francisco, with mines on both sides, and numerous flumes which
tell of busy times. Halloa! what's this? Dutch Flat. Shades of
Bret Harte, true child of genius, what a pity you ever forsook
these scenes to dwindle in the foreign air of the Atlantic coast!
A whispering pine of the Sierras transplanted to Fifth Avenue!
How could it grow? Although it shows some faint signs of life,
how sickly are the leaves! As for fruit, there is none. America
had in Bret Harte its most distinctively national poet. His
reputation in Europe proved his originality. The fact is,
American poets have been only English "with a difference."
Tennyson might have written the "Psalm of Life," Browning
"Thanatopsis," but who could have written "Her Letter," or "Flynn
of Virginia," or "Jim," or "Chiquita"? An American, flesh and
bone, and none other. If the East would only discard him, as
Edinburgh society did his greater prototype, he might be forced
to return to his "native heath" in poverty, and rise again as the
first truly American poet. But poets, and indeed great artists as
a class, seem to yield their best only under pressure. The grape
must be crushed if we would have wine. Give a poet "society" at
his feet and he sings no more, or sings as Tennyson has been
singing of late years--fit strains to prepare us for the disgrace
he has brought upon the poet's calling. Poor, weak, silly old man!
Forgive him, however, for what he has done when truly the poet. He
was noble then and didn't know it; now he is a sham noble and
_knows_ it. Punishment enough that he stands no more upon the
mountain heights o'ertopping the petty ambitions of English life,

  "With his garlands
   And his singing robes about him."

His poet's robes, alas! are gone. Room, now, for the masquerader
disguised as a British peer! Place, next the last great vulgar
brewer or unprincipled political trimmer in that motley assembly,
the House of Lords!

The weather is superb, the sky cloudless; the train stops to allow
us to see the celebrated Cape Horn; the railroad skirts the edge
of the mountain, and we stand upon a precipice two thousand feet
high, smaller mountains enclosing the plain below, and the
American River running at our feet. It is very fine, indeed, but
the grandeur between Pack Saddle and San Francisco, with the
exception of the entrance to Weber Canon and a few miles in the
vicinity, is all here; as a whole, the scenery on the Pacific
Railroad is disappointing to one familiar with the Alleghanies.

At Colfax, two hundred miles from San Francisco, we stop for
breakfast and have our first experience of fresh California grapes
and salmon; the former black Hamburgs not to be excelled by the
best hot-house grapes of England; and what a bagful for a quarter!
We tried the native white wine at dinner, and found it a fair
Sauterne. With such grapes and climate, it must surely be only a
question of a few years before the true American wine makes its
appearance, and then what shall we have to import? Silks and
woollens are going, watches and jewelry have already gone, and in
this connection I think I may venture to say good-bye to foreign
iron and steel; cotton goods went long ago. Now if wines, and
especially champagne--that creature of fashion--should go, what
shall we have to tax? What if America, which has given to mankind
so many political lessons, should be destined to show a government
living up to the very highest dictate of political economy, viz.,
supported by direct taxation! No, there remain our home products,
whiskey and tobacco; let us be satisfied to do the next best thing
and make these pay the entire cost of government. The day is not
far distant when out of these two so-called luxuries we shall
collect all our taxes; and those virtuous citizens who use neither
shall escape scot-free. Although these sentences were written
years ago, now since we approach the threshold of fulfilment I am
not sure that upon the whole the total abolition of the internal
revenue system is not preferable. We should thus dispense with
four thousand officials. In government, the fewer the better.

No greater contrast can be imagined than that from the barren
desert to the fertile plains below; oleanders and geraniums greet
us with their welcome smiles; grapes, pears, peaches, all in
profusion; we are indeed in the Italy of America at last, and
Sacramento is reached by half-past ten. Since the great flood
which almost ruined it some years ago, extensive dykes have been
built, walling in the city, which so far have proved a sufficient
barrier against the rapid swellings of the American River, that
pours down its torrents from the mountains; but if Sacramento be
now secure against flood, it is certainly vulnerable to the
attacks of the not less terrible demon of fire. Such a mass of
combustible material piled together and called a city I never saw
before: it is a tinder-box, and we are to hear of its destruction
some day. Prepare for an extra: "Great fire in Sacramento; the
city in ashes;" but then, don't let us call it accidental.

What a valley we rush through for the hundred miles which separate
Sacramento from San Francisco! It is about sixty miles wide, and as
level as a billiard-table. Here are the famous wheat fields: as far
as the eye can reach on either side we see nothing but the golden
straw standing, minus the heads of wheat which have been cut off,
the straw being left to be burned down as a fertilizer. Fancy a
Western prairie, substitute golden grain for corn, and you have
before you the California harvest; for four hundred miles this
valley extends, and it is wheat from one end to the other--nothing
but wheat. Granted sufficient rain in the rainy season--that is,
from November till February--and the husbandman seeks nothing more;
Nature does all the rest, and a bountiful harvest is a certainty. In
some years there is a scarcity of rain, but to provide against even
this sole remaining contingency the rivers have but to be properly
used for irrigation; with this done, the wheat crop of the Pacific
coast will outstrip in value, year after year, all the gold and
silver that can be mined. Douglas Jerrold's famous saying applies to
no other land so well as to this, for it indeed needs only "to be
tickled with a hoe to smile with a harvest."

We reached Oakland, the Jersey City of San Francisco, on time to
the minute; the ferry-boat starts, and there lies before us the
New York of the Pacific: but instead of the bright sparkling city
we had pictured, sinking to rest with its tall spires suffused by
the glories of the setting sun, imagine our surprise when not even
our own smoky Pittsburgh could boast a denser canopy of smoke. A
friend who had kindly met us upon arrival at Oakland tried to
explain that this was not all smoke; it was mostly fog, and a
peculiar wind which sometimes had this effect; but we could
scarcely be mistaken upon that point. No, no, Mr. O'B., you may
know all about "Frisco," the Chinese, the mines, and the Yosemite,
but do allow me to know something about smoke. We reached our
hotel, from the seven days' trip, and, after a bath and a good
dinner with agreeable company, were shown as much of the city as
it was possible to see before the "wee short hour ayont the
twal'."

       *       *       *       *       *

PALACE HOTEL, SAN FRANCISCO, Wednesday Evening, October 23.

A palace truly! Where shall we find its equal? Windsor Hotel,
good-bye! you must yield the palm to your great Western rival, as
far as structure goes, though in all other respects you may keep
the foremost place. There is no other hotel building in the world
equal to this. The court of the Grand at Paris is poor compared to
that of the Palace. Its general effect at night, when brilliantly
lighted, is superb; its furniture, rooms and appointments are all
fine, but then it tells you all over it was built to "whip all
creation," and the millions of its lucky owner enabled him to
triumph. It is as much in place in San Francisco as the Taj would
be in Sligo; but then your California operator, when he has made a
"pile," goes in for a hotel, just as in New York one takes to a
marble palace or a grand railway depot, or in Cincinnati to a
music hall, or in Pittsburgh to building a church or another
rolling mill. Every community has its social idiosyncrasies, but
it struck us as rather an amusing coincidence that while we had
recently greeted no less a man than Potter Palmer, Esq., behind
the counter in Chicago as "mine host of the Garter," we should so
soon have found ourselves in the keeping of Senator Sharon, lessee
of the Palace. These hotels do not impress one as being quite
suitable monuments for one who naturally considers his labors
about over when he builds, as they are apt apparently to prove
rather lively for comfort to the owners, and we have decided when
our building time comes that it shall not be in the hotel line. We
got to bed at last, but who could sleep after such a day--after
such a week! The ceaseless motion, with the click, click, click of
the wheels--our sweet lullaby apparently this had become--was
wanting; and then the telegrams from home, which bade us Godspeed,
the warm, balmy air of Italy, when we had left winter behind--all
this drove sleep away; and when drowsiness came, what apparitions
of Japanese, Chinese, Indians, elephants, camels, josses! passed
through our brain in endless procession. We were at the Golden
Gate; we had just reached the edge of the Pacific Ocean, and
before us lay

   ... "the wealth of Ormus and of Ind,
   Or where the gorgeous East, with richest hand,
   Showers on her kings barbaric pearl and gold.

To every blink the livelong night there came this refrain, which
seemed to close each scene of Oriental magnificence that haunted
the imagination:

   "And our gude ship sails ye morn,
    And our gude ship sails ye morn."

Do what I would, the words of the old Scotch ballad would not
down. Sleep! who could sleep in such an hour? Dead must be the man
whose pulse beats not quicker, and whose enthusiasm is not
enkindled when for the first time he is privileged to whisper to
himself, The East! the East!

   "And our gude ship sails ye morn."

       *       *       *       *       *

HARBOR OF SAN FRANCISCO, Thursday, October 24.

At last! noon, 24th, and there she lies--the Belgic at her dock!
What a crowd! but not of us; eight hundred Chinamen are to return
to the Flowery Land. One looks like another; but how quiet they
are! Are they happy? overjoyed at being homeward bound? We cannot
judge. Those sphinx-like, copper-colored faces tell us no tales.
We had asked a question last night by telegraph, and here is the
reply brought to us on the deck. It ends with a tender good-bye.
How near and yet how far! but even if the message had sought us
out at the Antipodes, its power to warm the heart with the sense
of the near presence and companionship of those we love would only
have been enhanced. In this we seem almost to have reached the
dream of the Swedish seer, who tells us that thought brings
presence, annihilating space in heaven.

We start promptly at noon. Our ship is deeply laden with flour,
which China needs in consequence of the famine prevailing in its
northern provinces, not owing to a failure of the rice, as I had
understood, but of the millet, which is used by the poor instead
of rice. Some writers estimate that five millions of people must
die from starvation before the next crop can be gathered; but this
seems incredible. And now America comes to the rescue, so that at
this moment, while from its Eastern shores it pours forth its
inexhaustible stores to feed Europe, it sends from the West of its
surplus to the older races of the far East. Thus from all sides,
fabled Ceres as she is, she scatters to all peoples from the horn
of plenty. Favored land, may you prove worthy of all your
blessings and show to the world that after ages of wars and
conquests there comes at last to the troubled earth the glorious
reign of peace. But no new steel cruisers, no standing army. These
are the devil's tools in monarchies; the Republic's weapons are
the ploughshare and the pruning hook.

For three hundred miles the Pacific is never pacific. Coast winds
create a swell, and our first two nights at sea were trying to bad
sailors, but the motion was to me so soft after our long railway
ride that I seemed to be resting on air cushions. It was more
delightful to be awake and enjoy the sense of perfect rest than to
sleep, tired as we were; so we lay literally

  "Rocked in the cradle of the rude imperious surge,"

and enjoyed it.

To some of my talented New York friends who are touched with
Buddhism just now and much puzzled to describe, and I judge even
to imagine, their heaven, I confidently recommend a week's
continuous jar upon a rough railway as the surest preparation for
attaining a just conception of Nirvana, where perfect rest is held
the greatest possible bliss. Lying, as I did apparently, upon air
cushions, and rocked so softly on the waves, I had not a wish;
desire was gone; I was content; every particle of my weary body
seemed bathed in delight. Here was the delicious sense of rest we
are promised in Nirvana. The third day out we are beyond the
influence of the coast, and begin our first experience of the
Pacific Ocean. So far it is simply perfect; we are on the ideal
summer sea. What hours for lovers, these superb nights! they would
develop rapidly, I'm sure, under such skyey influences. The
temperature is genial, balmy breezes blow, there is no feeling of
chilliness; the sea, bathed in silver, glistens in the moonlight;
we sit under awnings and glide through the water. The loneliness
of this great ocean I find very impressive--so different from the
Atlantic pathway--we are so terribly alone, a speck in the
universe; the sky seems to enclose us in a huge inverted bowl, and
we are only groping about, as it were, to find a way out; it is
equidistant all around us; nothing but clouds and water. But as we
sail westward we have every night a magnificent picture. I have
never seen such resplendent sunsets as these: we seem nightly to
be just approaching the gates of Enchanted Land; through the
clouds, in beautiful perspective, shine the gardens of the
Hesperides, and imagination readily creates fairy lands beyond,
peopled with spirits and fays. It is not so much the gorgeousness
of the colors as their variety which gives these sunsets a
character of their own; one can find anything he chooses in their
infinite depths. Turner must have seen such in his mind's eye. "I
never saw such sunsets as these you paint," said the critic of his
style. "No; don't you wish you could?" was the reply. But I think
even a prosaic critic would feel that these Pacific pictures have
a spiritual sense beyond the letter, unless, indeed, he were
Wordsworth's friend, to whom

  "A primrose by a river's brim
   A yellow primrose was to him,
   And it was nothing more."

He, of course, is hopeless.

       *       *       *       *       *

THURSDAY, October 31.

We have been a week at sea. Can it be only seven days since we
waved adieu to bright eyes on the pier? We begin to feel at home
on the ship. The passengers are now known to each other, and
hereafter the days, will slip by faster. I went down with the
doctor and Vandy to see the Chinamen to-day. What a sight! Piled
in narrow cots three tiers deep, with passages between the rows
scarcely wide enough for one to walk, from end to end of the ship
these poor wretches lie in an atmosphere so stifling that I had to
rush up to the deck for air. So far three have died, and two have
become crazy. My foolish curiosity has made the voyage less
satisfactory, for I cannot forget the danger of disease breaking
out among this horde, nor can I drive the yellow, stupid-looking
faces out of mind. The night of the day in which I had gone below
we were playing a rubber of whist in the cabin when the port-hole
at my head was pushed open, and a voice in broken English shouted,
"Crazee manee; he makee firee, firee!" I jumped round and saw a
Chinaman. Such an expression--Shakespeare alone has described it--

  "And with a look so piteous in purport,
   As if he had been loosed out of hell
   To speak of horrors."

Fire! that epitome of all that is appalling at sea, the danger
each one instinctively dreads, but no one mentions. One ran one
way and one another. The doctor (a real canny Scot, who sings "My
Nannie's awa'" like Wilson) was over the rail and down the hold in
a moment. I ran to Captain Meyer's room on the upper deck and
roused him. He too was down and in the hold like a flash--brave
fellows that they are, these "true British sailors." I waited the
result, knowing that if fire had really started, a general
stampede of Chinamen would soon come from the hatches; but all was
still. How long those few moments seemed! In a short time the
captain returned, looking, in his night-clothes, like a ghost. One
of the crazy men had broken loose from his chains, and the
Chinamen were panic-stricken. The watchman wanted the most
startling alarm, and found it, undoubtedly, in that word fire. It
is all over; but when he next has to sound an alarm let him "take
any form but that."

We have a reverend missionary and wife, with two young lady
missionaries in embryo, who are on their way to begin their labors
among the Chinese. They are busily engaged learning the language.
Poor girls! what a life they have before them! But apart from all
question of its true usefulness, they have the grand thought to
sustain them, and ennoble their lives, that they go at the call of
what seems to them their duty. We watch the Chinese eating and
laugh at their chopsticks, but we forget that one reason why John
Chinaman prides himself upon being at the pinnacle of civilization
is that he uses these very chopsticks. (None of the races of Asia,
and until recently he knew no other, have ever got beyond
chopsticks, the use of which was first taught China, while most
of them don't even have them yet.) Let us not forget that our
ancestors were using their fingers--barbarians that they
were--when the Chinese had risen, centuries before, to the
refinement of these sticks, for the fork is only about three
hundred years old. Shakespeare probably, Spenser certainly, had
only a knife at his girdle to carve the meat he ate, the fingers
being important auxiliaries. We must be modest upon this chopstick
question. It costs the ship eleven cents (5-1/2 d.) per day a head
to feed these people, and this pays for a wholesome diet in great
abundance, much beyond what they are accustomed to.

While on the subject of the Chinaman I may note that of course we
did not get through California without hearing the Chinese problem
warmly discussed. It is the burning question just now upon the
Pacific coast, but it seems to me our Californians' fears are, as
Colonel Diehl would put it, "slightly previous." There are only
about 130,000 Chinese in America, and great numbers are returning
as the result of hard times, and I fear harder treatment. There is
no indication that we are to be overrun by them, and until they
change their religious ideas and come to California to marry,
settle, die, and be buried there, it is preposterous to believe
there is any thing in the agitation against them beyond the usual
prejudice of the ignorant races next to them in the social scale.

I met the owner of a quicksilver mine, whose remarks shed a flood
of light upon the matter. The mine yields a lean ore, and did not
pay when worked by white labor costing $2 to $2.50 per day. He
contracted with a Chinaman to furnish 170 men at one-half these
rates. They work well, doing as much per man as the white man can
do in this climate. He has no trouble with them--no fights, no
sprees, no strikes. The difference in the cost enables him to work
at a profit a mine which otherwise would be idle; and to such as
talk against Chinese labor in the neighborhood, he replies, "Very
well, drive it off if you please, but the mine stops if you do."
The benefit to the district of having a mine actively at work has
so far insured protection. This is the whole story. Our free
American citizen from Tipperary and the restless rowdy of home
growth find a rival beating them in the race, and instead of
taking the lesson to heart and practising the virtues which cause
the Chinaman to excel, they mount the rostrum and proclaim that
this is a "white man's country," and "down with the nigger and the
Heathen Chinee," and "three cheers for whiskey and a free fight!"
The Chinese question has not reached a stage requiring
legislation, nor, if let alone, will it do so for centuries to
come--and not then unless the Chinese change their religious
ideas, which they have not done for thousands of years, and are
not likely to do in our time.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY, November 1

We saw flying-fishes to-day for the first time. The captain had
been telling us as we approached the 3Oth degree of latitude that
we should see these curiosities, and, sure enough, while standing
on the bridge this morning, looking toward the bow, I saw three
objects rise out of the water and fly from us. One seemed as large
as a herring, the others were like humming-birds. They have much
larger wings than I had supposed, and shine brightly in the sun as
they fly. We have on board a gentleman connected with the Dutch
Government, who visits their out-of-the-way possessions in the
Malay Archipelago. He has been where a white man never was
before--in the interior of New Guinea--and has seen strange
things. He tells us that the birds of paradise take seven years to
develop. The first year male and female are alike, but year after
year the male acquires brighter feathers, until it becomes the
superb bird we know. Some one remarked that it is just the reverse
with the birds of paradise in man's creation. Here our Eve puts on
gayer plumage year after year until finally she develops into a
still more superb bird, while the male remains the same
sober-suited fowl he was at first; but this was from a bachelor,
I think.

We are in a new world, and the talk is all of people and islands and
animals we never heard of. Do you know, for instance, that such a
potentate as the Sultan of Terantor exists? and, ambitious ruler
that he is, that he now claims tribute from the whole of New Guinea?
Then, again, let me tell you that the Sultan of Burnei gets $6,000
per year tribute from Setwanak, and, like a grasping tyrant, demands
more; hence the wars which rage in that quarter of the globe. The
Setwanaks have appealed to the "God of Battles," and are no doubt
shouting on all hands that "Resistance to tyrants is obedience to
God;" and "Millions for defence; not a cent for tribute." Look out
for their forthcoming declaration of independence; and why shouldn't
they have their "_Whereases_" as well as your even Christian? The
only trouble is that when monarchs fight nothing is settled as a
rule; what one loses to-day, he tries to win back to-morrow, and so
the masses are kept in a state of perpetual war, or preparation for
war, equally expensive. If Herbert Spencer had never formulated
anything but the law underlying these sad contentions between man
and man, he would have deserved to rank as one of our greatest
benefactors. "When power is arbitrarily held by chief or king, the
military spirit is developed, and wars of conquest and dynasties
ensue; and just in proportion as power is obtained by the people,
the industrial type is developed and peace ensues." Therefore the
greatest thinker of the age is a republican. I quote from memory,
but the substance is there, and it is because this law is true that
there is hope for the future of the world, for everywhere the people
are marching to political power. England is yet the world's greatest
offender, because she is still ruled by the few, her boasted
representative system being only a sham. When the masses do really
govern, England will be pacific and make friends throughout the
world instead of enemies, "and sing the songs of peace to all her
neighbors."

The Dutch have 35,000,000 under their sway in Java and the other
Malay Islands; as many as Great Britain has within her borders.
The world gets most of its spices and its coffee from these
people. So the Dutch are not to be credited only with having taken
Holland, you see.

Another Chinaman is reported gone to-day: all have to be embalmed,
of course, and the doctor gets as his fee $12.50 for each corpse.
He complained to me the other day that these people would not take
his medicines, and, Scotchman--like, didn't see the point I
made--that they might naturally hesitate to swallow the potions of
one whose highest reward arose from a fatal result. The Heathen
Chinee is not a fool. The coffins of the dead on the wheel-house
begin to make quite a show; they are covered with canvas, but one
will sometimes see the pile. Not one of these men could ever have
been induced to leave his home without satisfactory assurance that
in case of death his remains would be carried back and carefully
buried in the spot where he first drew breath. I remember reading
in MacLeod's "Highland Parish" that so strongly implanted is this
sentiment in the Highlanders that even a wife who marries out of
her clan is brought home at her death and buried among her own
kith and kin. I confess to a strange sympathy with this feeling
myself. It seems to agree with the eternal fitness of things, that
where we first saw day we should rest after the race is run. Yes,
the old song is right:

  "Wherever we wander in life's stormy ways
   May our paths lead to home ere the close of our days,
   And our evening of life in serenity close
   In the Isle where the bones of our Fathers repose."

One of our company has kindly shown me "some things in waves"
which I have always passed over before. Hereafter they will have a
new interest and a new beauty for me. I now watch by the hour for
some rare effect and colors to which I was before stone-blind.
Some of the rarest jewels are rated by comparison with the emerald
and aqua-marine tints shown by the pure waves of the ocean.
Thanks, my fellow-traveller, for a new sense awakened.

The albatrosses, which follow us in large numbers, are a source of
pleasure. These are not the sacred birds of the Ancient Mariner,
but are of the same species. They excel all other birds, I think,
in power and gracefulness of flight. It is rather a glide than a
fly, as they appear scarcely ever to flap their wings, but sail on
as it were "by the sole act of their unlorded will." No wonder
such woe befell the Ancient Mariner through killing one. They are
too grand to destroy. Last evening I had a treat in seeing these
birds gathering for the night on the waters in the hollow of a
deep wave. A dozen were already in the nest as our ship swept
past, and others were coming every moment from all directions to
the fold; probably thirty birds would thus nestle together through
the long night in the middle of this waste of waters. I was glad
for their sakes, poor wanderers, that their lonely lives were
brightened at night by the companionship of their fellows.

Our second Sunday at sea. As I write, the bell tolls for church.
Our missionary will have a small congregation, for there are only
twenty-two passengers. I trust he will be moved to speak to us,
away in mid-ocean, of the great works of the Unknown, the mighty
deep, the universe, the stars, at which we nightly wonder, and not
drag us down to the level of dogmas we can know nothing of, and
about which we care less. The sermon is over. Pshaw! He spent the
morning attempting to prove to us that the wine Christ made at the
marriage feast was not fermented, as if it mattered, or as if this
could ever be known! and I was in the mood to preach such a
magnificent sermon myself, too, if I had had his place. No; I
shall never forgive him--never!

It is an even chance that this missionary will one day inflict
such frivolous stuff upon the heathen as part of the divine
message; for of the majesty, the sweetness, and the reforming
power of Christ's teaching and character, he seems to have not the
faintest conception. To the enquiry one constantly hears in the
East, why churches send forth as missionaries such inferior men as
they generally do, whose task is to eradicate error and plant
truth--there is this to be said: churches must take the best
material at their disposal, and men who have the ability to
influence their fellows through the pulpit find their best and
highest work at home. This leaves the incapables for foreign
service. The other class from which missionaries must be drawn are
the over-zealous, who have plenty of enthusiastic emotional
fervor, but combined in most cases with narrow, dogmatic
views--the very kind of men to irritate the people to whom they
are sent, and the least likely to win their hearts or reach their
understanding. There are notable exceptions, able men who still go
at duty's call; but such generally see that they can be ill spared
from more pressing home work.

       *       *       *       *       *

MONDAY, November 4.

Our course is the southerly one, 5,120 miles to Yokohama, some
five hundred miles farther than that of the great circle; but for
the increased distance we have full compensation in the delightful
weather and calm seas we experience. The water is about 72 deg., the
air 73 deg., so that it is genial on deck. We are really in summer
weather--something so different from Atlantic sailing that I get
accustomed to it with difficulty. Last night at ten o'clock we
passed the half-way point ten days and eight hours out. The
captain showed us his chart to-day, and it was reassuring to see
that to-morrow we shall pass within 120 miles of land--the Midway
Islands. Upon one of this coral group the Pacific Mail Company has
deposited 3,000 tons of coal and a large amount of mess pork as a
reserve supply in case any steamer should be disabled. We passed
the Sandwich Islands, not more than 450 miles to the southward,
when one quarter of the way over, and the Bonin Islands occupy
about the same relative position in our course to the eastward, so
that the immense distance between San Francisco and Yokohama is
finely provided for in case of accident. You have but to sail
southward and find a port of refuge. Indeed, there is along this
entire parallel of latitude a new strip of land under process of
manufacture. A good chart shows islands dotting the South Pacific
Ocean, all of coral formation; these millions of toilers are hard
at work, and it is only a question of time when our posterity will
run by rail from the Sandwich to the Philippine Islands, always
provided that the work of these little builders is not interfered
with by forces which destroy. Thus the grand, never-ending work of
creation goes on, cycle upon cycle, revealing new wonders at every
turn and knowing no rest or pause.

Gone, November 5th, 1878, a _dies non_, which never was born.
Lost, strayed, or stolen--a rare diadem, composed of twenty-four
precious gems--some diamonds bright, some rubies rare, some jet as
black as night. It was to have been displayed at midnight to an
admiring few who nightly gaze upon the stars, but when looked for
it was nowhere to be found. A well-known party, familiarly known
as Old Sol, is thought to be concerned in the matter, but chiefly
is suspected a notorious thief who has stolen many precious
jewels--Old Father Time. Oh! many an hour has that thief stolen,
but this gobbling up of a whole day and night at one fell swoop
seems out of all reason. Yet he has done it! We have no 5th of
November. An amusing story is told of some clergymen returning to
America, in which case a day is gained, and it is necessary to
have two days of the same date instead of omitting one, as in our
case. The line was crossed on Sunday, and the captain, never
thinking, called out to the chief officer to make another Sunday
to-morrow. One of the clergymen was Scotch, and Presbyterian at
that. "Mak a Sawbath--mak the holy Sawbath; ma conscience!" The
order had been given, however, and two Sundays were observed; but
our scandalized friend could never be reconciled to the captain
who had presumed to have a holy Sabbath of his "ain making."

       *       *       *       *       *

THURSDAY, November 7.

These nights were not made for sleep, nor these days either, for
that matter; but of all the nights I have ever seen I think this
one excels. The moon is overhead and at the full, casting her
mellow light around, suffusing with a soft glory the heavens
above, and lending to the dancing, foaming waves a silvery
shimmer. Jupiter is on the western horizon, fading out of sight,
but how lustrous! Lyra, Arcturus, Aldebaran, seem of gigantic
size. All sails are set, and a fair, balmy wind from the sweet
south makes the Belgic glide through the rushing waters. We are
only twenty miles from the Morrell Islands. How I long for a
deckful of my friends to exult with me in this delight! Nothing
but Byron's lines will do it justice. They are too long to quote
here, but here are a few lines, which I must repeat:

                     .... "for the night
   Hath been to me a more familiar face
   Than that of man; and in her starry shade
   Of dim and solitary loveliness
   I learned the language of another world."

One does feel in such moments, when beauty and sublimity are so
overpoweringly displayed, that there are worlds and life beyond
our ken, or should be such, for this short day on earth surely
should be but the foretaste of a sublime existence which such
moods indicate as our congenial home.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY, November 8.

I know I went to bed some time early this morning, but after
reading last night's effusion in the cold, sober light of day, it
strikes me I must have been rather enthusiastic. However, as I
intend these notes to be an honest record of my feelings, I shall
not attempt to modify the outburst. I know I recited poetry all
the evening as I trod the deck, and therefore was in the mood for
anything. The captain told me to-night that in all his voyages at
this season he had never had one so fine as this. Of course he
hadn't. Just our luck, you see. He never had one who enjoyed a
trip more--that he is free to confess. I fairly revel in the sea,
and pity poor Vandy, who is never quite up to the mark on
shipboard. Some far-away ancestor, some good Scotch "deil ma
care," who took to smuggling instead of the more fashionable
occupation of cattle-stealing, for most of the carles

  "Found the meat that made their broth
   In England and in Scotland both,"

must have implanted in the Carnegies the instinct of the salmon
for the sea. I should have been a sailor bold, and sailed the
"sawt, sawt faeme," a pirate with a pirate's bride captured _vi
et armis_, and all the rest of it.

I am up late again to-night, but, fortunately, there wasn't a soul
on deck to hear me trying to sing

  "Up, up with the flag; let it wave o'er the sea,
   I'm afloat, I'm afloat, and the Rover is free!"

The officer on the bridge halloaed to me once, and asked if I
wanted any thing; but I forgave him. He could only hear my roaring
at his distance; had I been nearer, the melody would no doubt have
reached his ears, and he would have known I was singing a tune.
Still I thought it politic to affect not having heard him, and
quietly stepped down to bed. I shall avoid friend Ryan in the
morning, as it would be embarrassing to be asked, especially
before the young ladies, who or what I was howling at last night.
Some people have no tact, and he might be one of these and fail to
comprehend. With the exception of the officers, our crew, sailors,
stewards, and all, are Chinese, and in all and each of these
capacities they excel. They stand the heat of the furnaces better
than any other people, and as stewards are models.

       *       *       *       *       *

SUNDAY, November 10.

Our third Sunday at sea. The past week has been unbroken sunshine,
moonlight, and smooth seas. So far not a ship has been seen. I
have read carefully eleven of Shakespeare's plays during the spare
hours of the voyage, and have enjoyed those most with which I was
least familiar, while some passages in even the best known I
wonder greatly at not having long ere this committed to memory, to
live there with the rest, and come at my call to minister to me.
They are such gems. I have them now, and feel as if I have made
new friends, whose angel visits will do me good in days and nights
to come. Byron affected to disparage the master, but I note two
other gems, beside many I knew of before, for which he stands
indebted. The idea in his celebrated lines in "Mazeppa"--

  "Methought that mist of dawning gray
   Would never dapple into day"--

is from _Two Gentlemen of Verona_, and the "Bright,
particular star" from _All's Well that Ends Well_. But of
course I do not intend any reflection upon Byron. Such was, and
is, the all-pervading, transcendent nature of Shakespeare's
genius; it was, and is, and shall be for ages yet to come, simply
impossible for any writer to avoid drawing from that fountain, for
every thing has its "environment," and Shakespeare is the
environment of all English-speaking men.

       *       *       *       *       *

WEDNESDAY, November 13.

Four hundred and fifty miles from land! To-day we have had the
only taste of Neptune's power he has favored us with: it began to
blow at midnight, and today we have a grand sea. I have just come
from the deck after witnessing the Pacific in its fury, and no one
would believe that one ocean could differ as much from another as
this does from the Atlantic. The waves here move in immense
masses. It is an acre of water in motion, as one solid lump,
instead of a few feet square dashed into foam. One says
instinctively,

  "What care these roarers for the name of king?"

I have noticed that even in the smallest waves cast aside by the
ship formations are different from those of other seas. It is
midnight, and we are only 125 miles from Japan. Not a passenger
except myself on deck, but I cannot sleep. Vandy would be with me,
I know, poor fellow, were he able to crawl, but the storm has
settled him for the present. How strange that none feel sufficient
interest to stay awake and watch with me! They would be amply
repaid. The phosphorescent sea shows forth its wonders now--not
alone in the myriads of small stars of light, which please you in
the Atlantic, but at every turn of the foam dashed from the bow
and sides of the ship masses of glittering phosphorescence as
large as my travelling cap. What creatures these must be which can
emit light in such clusters! I leave the deck with the cheery
"All's well!" ringing in my ears as the ship dances before the
wind which brings to a close our long flight across the Pacific.
How we have longed for this last night, and yet how often in after
life are we to sigh for a return to the glorious nights we have
lived at sea! Where we have

  "Mingled with the universe to feel
   What we can ne'er express,
   Nor cannot all conceal."

Good-night, my band of dear, dear friends, now in the midst of
your daily toil--for it is yet day with you--racking your brains
that the holiday wanderer may revel as he is now doing. In the
earnest hope that the day may not be far distant when to you may
come similar enjoyment when he is the toiler, he goes at last to
bed.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY, November 15.

Land ahoy! The islands of Japan are in sight, and the entrance to
the bay is reached at 4 P.M. The sail up this bay is never to be
forgotten. The sun set as we entered, and then came such a sky as
Italy cannot rival. I have seen it pictured as deluging Egypt with
its glory, but this we have yet to see. Fusiyama itself shone
forth under its rays, its very summit clear, more than 14,000 feet
above us. The clouds in large masses lay east and west of the
peak, but cowering far below, as if not one speck dared to rise to
its crown. It stood alone in solitary grandeur, by far the most
impressive mountain I have yet seen; for mountains, as a rule, are
disappointing, the height being generally attained by gradations.
It is only to Fusiyama, and such as it, that rise alone in one
unbroken pyramid, that one can apply Schiller's grand line,

  "Ye are the things which tower,"

Fusiyama _towers_ beyond any crag or peak I know of; and I do
not wonder that in early days the Japanese made the home of their
gods upon its crest.

It was nine o'clock when the anchor dropped, and in a few minutes
after small boats crowded alongside to take us ashore. Until you
are rowed in a sampan in style, never flatter yourself you have
known the grotesque in the way of transportation. Fancy a large,
wide canoe, with a small cabin in the stern, the deck in front
lower than the sides, and on this four creatures, resembling
nothing on earth so much as the demons in the _Black Crook_,
minus most of the covering. They stand two on each side, but not
in a line, and each works a long oar scull-fashion, accompanying
each stroke with shouts such as we never heard before; the last
one steers as well as sculls with his oar, and thus we go
propelled by these yelling devils, who apparently work themselves
into a state of fearful excitement. We land finally, pass the
Custom House without examination, and with sea-legs which are far
from steady reach our hotel. A bite of supper--but what fearful
creatures again to bow and wait on us! More demons. We laugh every
minute at some funny performance, and wonder where we can be; but
how surprisingly good every thing is which we eat or drink on land
after twenty-two days at sea!

       *       *       *       *       *

TUESDAY, November 19.

We have been three days in Japan, and all we can tell you is that
we are powerless to convey more than the faintest idea of that
which meets us at every turn. Had we to return to-morrow, we
should still feel that we had been fully compensated for our
journey. Though we have seen most of the strange and novel which
Europe has to show, a few hours' stroll in Yokohama or Tokio has
revealed to us more of the unexpected than all we ever saw
elsewhere. No country I have visited till now has proved as
strange as I had imagined it; the contrary obtains here. All is so
far beyond what I had pictured it that I am constantly regretting
so few of my friends will probably ever visit Japan to see and
enjoy for themselves. Let me try to describe a walk. We are at the
hotel door, having received the repeated bows, almost to the
ground, of numerous demons. A dozen big fellows rush up, each
between the shafts of his "ginrikshaw" like a cab-horse, and
invite us to enter, just as cabmen do elsewhere. But look at their
costume, or shall I rather say want of costume? No shoes, unless a
mat of straw secured with straw strings twisted around and between
the big toe and the next one may be called a shoe; legs and body
bare, except a narrow strip of rag around the loins; and such a
hat! it is either of some dark material, as big as the head of a
barrel (I do not exaggerate), to shelter them from sun and rain,
or a light straw flat of equal size. These are the Bettoes, who
will run and draw you eighteen miles in three hours and a quarter,
this being the distance and time by "ginrikshaw" to Tokio. We
decline their proffers and walk on. What is this? A man on stilts!
His shoes are composed of a flat wooden sole about a quarter of an
inch thick, on which the foot rests, elevated upon two similar
pieces of board, about four inches high, placed crosswise. about
three inches apart. On the edges of these cross-pieces he struts
along. A second has solid wooden pieces of equal height, a third
has flat straw shoes, a fourth has none. Look out behind! What is
this noise? "Hulda, hulda, hulda!" shouted in our ears. We look
around, and four coolies, as naked as Adam, one at each corner of
a four-wheel truck, pushing a load of iron and relieving
themselves at every step by those unearthly groans. Never have we
seen that indispensable commodity transported in that fashion
before. But look there! A fishmonger comes with a basket swinging
on each end of a bamboo pole carried over the shoulder--all single
loads are so carried--and yonder goes a water-carrier, carrying
his stoups in the same manner, while over his shoulders he has
flung a coat that would make the reputation of a clown in the
circus. The dress of the women is not so varied, but their painted
lips and whitened necks, and, in the case of the married women,
their blackened teeth, afford us much cause for staring, although
I cannot bear to look upon these hideous-looking wretches when
they smile; I have to turn my eyes away. How women can be induced
to make such disgusting frights of themselves I cannot conceive,
but Fashion--Fashion does anything. The appearance of the children
is comical in the extreme. They are so thickly padded with dress
upon dress as to give them the look of little fat Esquimaux. The
women invariably carry them on their backs, Indian fashion. Here
are two Japs meeting in the middle of the street. They bow three
times, each inclination lower and more profound than the preceding
one, infinite care being taken to drop the proper number of inches
befitting their respective ranks, and then shake their own hands
in token of their joy. We soon reach the region of the shops.
These are small booths, and squat on the floor sit four or five
men and women around a brazier, warming their hands while they
smoke. All the shops are of wood, but a small part is constructed
of mud, and is said to be fire-proof. In this the valuables are
instantly thrown when one of the very frequent fires occurs. The
floors are matted, and kept scrupulously clean. No one thinks of
entering without first taking his shoes off. The shop floors are
raised about eighteen inches above the street, and on the edges
purchasers sit sidewise and make their bargains. The entire street
is a pavement, as no horses are to be provided for. We visited the
tea factories at Yokohama. Japan has become of late years an
exporter of tea to America, no less than five thousand tons being
shipped last year. Tea when first gathered is tasteless, but after
being exposed to the sun it ferments like hay. It is then curled,
twisted, baked, and brought to the dealers, who again pick it over
carefully and roll it into the form in which it reaches us. We saw
many hundreds of women and girls in the establishment of Messrs.
Walsh, Hall & Co. rolling rapidly about with their hands a
quantity of the leaves in large round pots under which a small
charcoal fire was burning. And now, for the benefit of my lady
friends, let me explain that the difference between black and
green tea is simply this: the former is allowed to cure or ferment
in the sun about fifty minutes longer than the latter, and during
this extra fifty minutes certain elements pass off which are
thought to affect the nervous system; hence green tea has a
greater effect upon weak nerves than the black, but you see the
same leaf makes either kind, as the owner elects. But here comes
in a strange prejudice. Green tea of the natural color could not
be sold in the American market. No, we insist upon having a
"prettier green," and we are accommodated, of course. What can a
dealer do but meet the imperious demands of his patrons? The
required color is obtained by adulterating the pure tea with a
mixture of indigo and gypsum, which the most conscientious dealers
are compelled to do. But we saw used in one case Prussian blue,
which is poisonous--this, however, was not in Messrs. Walsh, Hall
& Co.'s--and I was told that ultramarine is sometimes resorted to.
These more pernicious substances produce even a "prettier green"
than the indigo and gypsum, and secure the preference of ignorant
people. Moral--Stick to black tea and escape poison. For all of
which information, and many kind attentions, I have to thank Mr.
Walsh, our banker.

One hears very often in Japan during the night a long, plaintive
kind of whistle, which, upon inquiry, I found proceeded from blind
men or women, called shampooers, who are employed to rub or pinch
those suffering from pain, and who cure restlessness by the same
means. It is a favorite cure of the Japanese, and some foreigners
tell us they have employed it with success. I suppose, this
climate being productive of rheumatism and kindred pains, the
people are prone to fly to anything that secures temporary relief;
but it is a new idea, this, of being pinched to sleep.

We live well at the hotels here. Japan abounds in fish and game in
great variety. Woodcock, snipe, hares, and venison are cheap, and
all of excellent quality. The beef and mutton are also good, as
are the vegetables. Turnips, radishes and carrots are enormous,
owing, I suppose to the depth and fineness of the soil. Vandy
measured some of each, and reports: "Radishes, eighteen inches,
and beautifully white; carrots, twenty inches, and splendid."

       *       *       *       *       *

WEDNESDAY, November 20.

We started this morning from Yokohama for Tokio, the great city of
the Empire, which contains 1,030,000 inhabitants, according to a
census taken last year. Until within a few years past Japan had
two rulers--the Mikado, or spiritual, and the Tycoon, or secular
ruler, although, strictly speaking, the former was theoretically
the supreme ruler, the latter obtaining his power through marriage
with the family of the former. The seat of the Mikado was at
Kioto, a fine city near the centre of the island, while the Tycoon
resided at Tokio, or Yeddo, as it was then called. The Mikado was
invisible, being the veritable veiled prophet, none but a
privileged few being ever permitted to gaze upon his divine
person. A few years ago it was decided to combine the two powers,
and make Yeddo the only capital. The Mikado was carried to Yeddo
closely veiled, in triumphal procession, and the vast crowds,
assembled at every point to see the cavalcade, prostrated
themselves, and remained with eyes bent upon the ground as the
sacred car approached. An eye-witness describing the entry into
Tokio says that few dared to look up as the Presence passed.
Lately, the same Mikado has made a royal progress through the
country, meeting the principal men in each district, and
travelling in view of the entire population, so rapidly have
manners changed in Japan. When the Mikado was elevated to supreme
power, the feudal system, which had existed up to that time, was
abolished, and we now see no more of the Samuri, or two-sworded
men, or of the Daimios, the petty princes who formerly promenaded
the streets in gorgeous dresses, accompanied by their military
retainers. The soldiers, sailors, policemen, and all the official
classes are dressed in European style. It is the reigning fashion
to be European, and even furniture after our patterns is coming
into use. It is the same with food. The hotel where we are
rejoices in a French cook, expressly imported, and every night we
have parties of wealthy Japanese dining at this Tokio Delmonico's.
Last night we had a party of the most celebrated actors enjoying a
dinner to commemorate the successful completion of a new piece
which had enjoyed a great run. I amused myself trying to select
the Montagu, Gilbert, Becket, and Booth of the party, and
succeeded well, as I afterward heard. Actors are held in
estimation in Tokio, and these attracted great attention as they
dined. Matters are much as with us, I fancy. Our interpreter, in
his broken English, told us in regard to the two young lovers,
"Very high thought by much high ladies--oh, very high!" I do not
think European dress improves the appearance of the Japanese
gentlemen; they are very short, and--I regret to report
it--generally quite crooked in the legs, and their own flowing
costumes render them dignified and graceful. Indeed, after a
residence in the East for a while one agrees with the opinion he
hears often expressed there that our costume is the most
unpicturesque dress in the world.

We were fortunate in having as shipmates Captain Totaki, of the
navy, and a young lady, Mlle. Rio, who had been in America several
years, and had acquired an English education. They were
excessively kind to us during our entire stay, and much of the
pleasure derived is due to them. The captain gave us one evening
an entertainment at a fashionable tea-house, and introduced us to
the celebrated singing and dancing girls of Japan, of whom all
have heard. We were shown into a large room, the floor of which
was covered with bamboo matting laid upon some soft substance. Of
course our shoes were laid aside at the door of the house. There
were neither chairs nor furniture of any kind, but subsequently
chairs were found for us. The salutations on the part of the
numerous women servants were most profound, each prostrating
herself to the floor, and touching the mat with her forehead every
time she entered or left the apartment. Velvet mats were carried
into the room by a servant and placed around a brazier of
charcoal. In a few minutes servant after servant entered,
prostrating herself to the ground, and placing before us some
Japanese delicacy. One served soup in small lacquer bowls, another
fish, a third cakes, a fourth tea in very tiny cups, and others
various things, and finally saki, the wine of the country, was
produced, served in small cups like the tea. Then came the girls.
Seven approached, each carrying a musical instrument of queer
construction. They bowed profoundly, but I noticed did not touch
the mat with their foreheads, their rank being much superior to
that of the servants, and began to play and sing.

No entertainment is complete without a troop of these Gahazi
girls, and such entertainments form about the only social
amusement of the Japanese. And now for the music. Please
understand that the Japanese scale is not like ours, and nothing
like melody to our ears can be produced by it. They have a full
tone between each first and second note, and a semitone between
each third and fourth, and yet the same feelings are awakened in
them by their music as in us by ours, so that harmony itself is
simply a matter of education after all, and the glorious Fifth
Symphony itself, "Lohengrin," or "Scots wha hae," played or sung
as I have heard them, would convey no more meaning to these people
than so much rattling of cross-bones; but imagine the Fifth
Symphony on any scale but ours! I cannot reconcile myself to the
idea that we have not the only scale for such a theme; but one has
to learn that there are different ways for every thing, and no one
who knows much will assume that he has the best. Owing to the
change of the scale, I suppose I missed the sentiment of every
piece performed. When I thought they were giving us a wail for the
dead it turned out to be a warm welcome, and an assurance on the
part of those pretty maidens of their happiness in being permitted
the great honor of performing before such illustrious visitors.
Our companion, Mile. Rio, took one of the instruments and played
and sang a piece for us, but I was not more fortunate in my guess
with her. It was a wedding chorus, which I was willing to wager
was the Japanese "Miserere"; but this error may have its
significance after all. To us, in short, the music was execrable.
A falsetto, and a grinding, singsong falsetto at that--the most
disagreeable sound I ever heard in music--is very common, and
highly esteemed. The instruments resemble banjos, and there is a
harsh kind of drum accompaniment; but there is one larger string
instrument, the Japanese piano, upon which much older women play,
the younger girls not being sufficiently skilled to perform upon
it.

After a few songs had been sung, several of the girls laid down
their banjos, and after obeisance prepared to dance. Instead of
being a sprightly performance to, lively music, "first ae caper
syne anither," Japanese dancing is a very stately and measured
performance, the body instead of the feet being most brought into
requisition. With the aid of the indispensable fan the girls
succeed in depicting many different emotions, and all with
exquisite grace. It is the very poetry of motion. Each dance
illustrates a story, and is as well known by name as is the
"Highland Fling" or the "Sailor's Hornpipe." Here there was no
difficulty in following the story. Unlike music, acting is a
universal language, and in its domain "one touch of nature makes
the whole world kin." There are no different scales for the
expression of feeling. Love, in some of its manifold forms, as was
to have been expected, is the theme of most of these dances. I
redeemed my reputation here as a guesser, I think. I could give a
very fair report to Mlle. Rio of most that took place in the
dances, and we enjoyed this portion of the entertainment highly.
To a Japanese, how stupid our people must appear whirling round a
room until fatigued or dizzy, all for the fun of the thing!

The dresses of the girls were of the richest and most fashionable
description, the quietness of the colors surprising us, and their
manners those of high-born women. Indeed, they set the fashions,
and are the best educated and most accomplished of their sex.
These girls are sent for to furnish entertainment for an evening
just as we would engage a band for a party. They are said to be
highly respectable as a class, invariably reside with their
parents, who educate them at great expense, and often make, we
were told, very favorable marriages. The contrast between them and
their less accomplished sisters is so great as to strike even us,
who have been here only a few days, and must be held ignorant of
style.

The most wonderful sights of Tokio are the temples and the famous
tombs of the Tycoons. There is much similarity in the latter, but
that of the sixth Tycoon, at Shibba, is by far the most
magnificent. It has been rendered familiar by photographs and
engravings, and at any rate no description would convey a just
idea of it. It is gorgeous in color, and the extreme delicacy of
the gold is surprising; upon it, too, are found the finest known
specimens of the old lacquer. But these tombs totally failed to
impress me with any feeling akin to reverence; indeed, nothing in
Japan seems calculated to do so--the odor of the toyshop pervades
everything, even their temples. As for their religious belief, it
is hard to tell what it is, or whether they have any. One thing is
sure, the educated classes have discarded the faith of the
multitude, if they ever really entertained it, and no longer
worship the gods of old. The ignorant classes, however, are seen
pouring into the temples with their modest offerings, and asking
for prayers in their behalf. It is in Japan as it was in
Greece--one religion for the masses, and another, or rather none
in the ordinary sense, for the educated few.

As in Catholic countries, some shrines are esteemed more than
others. The Temple of the Foxes is the most popular in the Empire.
It is adorned with statues of Master Reynard in various postures.
His votaries are numerous, for the sagacity of the fox has passed
into a proverb, and these people hope by prayers and gifts to move
the fox-god to bestow upon them the shrewdness of the symbol. The
fox may be justly rated as the most successful preacher in Japan:
he draws better than any other, and his congregation is the
largest; but he has a rival not without pretensions in the
favorite goddess "Emma." We found her to be a large, very fat
woman, sitting in Japanese style, and surrounded by images of
children. Babies cluster like cherubs around the principal figure,
while an attendant sells for a cent apiece ugly painted ones made
out of clay, many of which have been placed by worshippers before
the goddess. As we approached, a young woman--married, for her
teeth were black, and respectably but not richly dressed--was on
her knees before the goddess so earnestly engaged in prayer that
she appeared wholly unconscious of our presence. There was no
mistaking that this was sincere devotion--a lifting up of the soul
to some power considered higher than itself. I became most anxious
to know what sorrow could so move her, and our interpreter
afterward told us that she asked but one gift from the goddess. It
was the prayer of old that a man-child should be born to her; and,
poor woman! when one knows what her life must be in this country
should this prayer remain unanswered, it saddens one to think of
it. A living death; another installed in her place; all that woman
holds dear trembling in the balance. How I pitied her! I also saw
men praying before other idols and working themselves into a state
of frenzy. Indeed I saw so much in the temples to make me unhappy
that I wished I had never visited any of them. It gives one such
desponding hopes of our race, of its present and of its future,
when so many are so bound down to the lowest form of superstition.

At one of the principal Shinto temples I saw the sacred dance with
which that great god is propitiated. In a booth two stories high,
in front of the temple, was a small stage upon which sat three old
priests. One beat a drum, the second played a flute, while the
third fingered a guitar. To this music a very pretty young
daughter of a priest, gorgeously arrayed in sacred robes, postured
with a fan, keeping time to the music. This was all. But, like the
tom-tom beating of the Buddhist which we heard at the same moment
from an opposite temple, the dance is thought to dispose the gods
to receive favorably the gifts and prayers of the devotees. We saw
at the same temple a large wooden figure which is reputed able to
cure all manner of diseases. So much and so hard had this figure
been rubbed by the poor sufferers that the nose is no longer
there; the face is literally rubbed smooth. The ears are gone, and
it is only a question of time when all traces of human form will
have vanished. It reminded us of the toe of St. Peter, in the
cathedral at Rome, which has been worn smooth by the osculations
of devout Christians.

Japan is rapidly adopting the manners and customs of European
civilization. There is at present a cry for representative
government, and one need not be surprised to hear by and by of the
Parliament of Japan. War-ships are building at the arsenal, which
are not only constructed but designed by native genius. A standing
army of about 50,000 men is maintained. Gas has been introduced in
some places, and railroads and telegraphs are in operation; and,
not to be behind their neighbors, a public debt and irredeemable
currency (based upon the property of the nation, of course,) have
been created. The currency is now at 22 per cent. discount as
compared with gold, and further depreciation is apprehended. (It
has since reached 50 per cent. discount.) It is modelled on our
American paper money, and is actually printed in New York. Let us
hope that Japan may soon be able to follow the Republic farther by
making it convertible--as good as gold. Notwithstanding its wide
"base"--in short, our greenbackers' "base"--it doesn't seem to
work here any better than at home.

Art in Japan is utilitarian; in no other country are articles of
common use so artistic. The furniture of a Japanese house is
scanty. We see no walls hung with pictures with showy gilt frames,
no portieres or curtains, none of the sofas, chairs, tables,
brackets, chandeliers, etc., which give our rooms so crowded an
appearance. The bareness of the rooms strikes one at once upon
entering, but when one examines the utensils in daily use even by
the poorer classes he sees that they are of uncommon beauty.
Surely this is of more moment than to have art confined to the
few, both as to articles and to persons. In Japan, art may be said
to be democratic; all classes are brought under its sway.

One thing must be said, however, about art throughout the East, in
China and in India as well as in Japan: up to this time it has
been content to remain solely decorative. The higher creative and
imaginative power has yet to be reached. Why this should be so is
an interesting question, and I resolve to read up the authorities
when opportunity offers and see how they account for it. May not
the poverty of the East have much to do with it? So very few are
rich; indeed, scarcely any are opulent in our sense, six thousand
dollars (L1,200) a year being considered a fortune in Japan, I am
told, and very few, even of the higher classes, possess as much.
In China and India it is much the same, a few rajahs in the latter
country excepted.

The start which religion gave to art in Europe is wanting in the
East, for the temples are mean and destitute of costly works. Rich
commercial and manufacturing classes do not exist in the East--as
wealth does not run into "pockets" as it does in Europe--especially
in England--and in America. I fear, therefore, that art in the East
will not advance much beyond the decorative stage for centuries
to come.

       *       *       *       *       *

SATURDAY, November 23.

Vandy and I walked to-day through the principal street of Tokio
from end to end, a distance of three miles. It is a fine, broad
avenue, crowded with people and vehicles drawn or pushed by men.
There is also a line of small one-horse wagons running as
omnibuses on the street--novel feature, unknown anywhere else in
the Empire. Our appearance attracted such crowds whenever we
stopped at a shop, that the police had to drive the gazers away.
The city is built upon a plain, and supplied with water by wells
only. Fires are of frequent occurrence. Japanese cities are such
piles of combustible material that I wonder they exist at all. But
fires are little used--only a brazier of charcoal now and then for
cooking purposes; and as most of the people eat at cook-shops,
there is never any fire at all in many of the houses. Long ladders
are erected as fire-towers, and upon these watchmen sit through
the night to give the alarm. It is only by tearing down or blowing
up surrounding houses that the progress of a fire can generally be
stayed. There is no such thing as insurance in Japan, the risks
being much too great.

The Japanese go to the theatre early in the morning and remain
until five o'clock in the evening. Doors open at five A.M., but
the rich classes do not appear before six or seven o'clock, at
which hour the performance begins. Breakfast is served in the
theatre about noon. The audience smoke, eat, sip tea, and enjoy
themselves as they choose. No seats are provided, but a small mat
is put down for each person as he enters, and beside it a box
filled with sand, in the middle of which are two pieces of glowing
charcoal, at which pipes are lighted. Ladies, as well as
gentlemen, be it remembered, invariably smoke in Japan. Every one
carries a small pipe with a long stem, and a tobacco-pouch
attached to it. At short intervals a little tobacco is put into
the pipe--just enough to give two whirls of smoke--after which the
tobacco is knocked out and the pipe again replenished. In no case
have I ever seen more than two very small whiffs taken at one
time. Even young ladies smoke in this manner, and to one who
detests tobacco, as I instinctively do, it may be imagined this
habit did not add to their attractiveness. A sweetheart who
defiled her lips with tobacco! "Phew!" Neither is it considered
disrespectful in any degree to begin smoking in the presence of
others. Deferential as the singing girls were, when at leisure
they lighted their pipes as a matter of course, wholly unconscious
that they were taking a liberty.

The marriage ceremony differs greatly from ours. The priests have
nothing to do with it, nor is there any religious ceremony. The
parents of a young man select a proper wife for him when he is
about twenty years of age, and manage the whole affair. They
consult the young lady's parents, and if the match is a
satisfactory one to them, writings are exchanged between the
parents of the young couple, the day is appointed, and the bride
and groom drink saki from the same cup; feasting and rejoicings
follow, sometimes continued for several days if the parents are
wealthy, and the marriage is consummated. In all cases the bride
goes to reside with the husband's parents, to whom, much more than
to the husband, it is necessary she should continue to be
satisfactory. Very often three generations live together, and an
amount of deference is paid to the oldest such as we have no
conception of.

The custom of blacking the teeth by married women, is the most
revolting practice I have yet seen. I have been in the houses of
fine people of Japan, and seen women, otherwise good-looking, who
had only to open their lips to convert themselves into objects of
disgust. I rejoice, therefore, to hear that fashion is setting in
against this abomination, and that some of the more recent brides
have refused to conform to the custom.

One readily gets used to anything, earthquakes included, and Japan
has many of these unruly visitors. One night we had three shocks
at Tokio, one sufficiently strong to wake me from sleep. My bed
shook violently, and the house threatened to fall upon us. The
same night we had a large fire in the city, and a hundred shrill,
tinkling bells, like so many cows in the woods, were rung to give
the alarm. The clapping of the night watchmen about our street
assured me, however, that it was all right with us, and I lay
still. The night watchmen here use two small square pieces of hard
wood which they strike frequently against each other as they go
the rounds as their "All's well" signal; but I think strangers, as
a rule, fail to appreciate the point in being awakened every now
and then simply to be assured that there is not the slightest
occasion for their being awake at all.

       *       *       *       *       *

MONDAY, November 25.

To-day we took a small steamer and visited the arsenal upon the
invitation of our friend Captain Totaki, Mlle. Rio being of the
party. It is finely situated on the bay about fifteen miles below
Yokohama, and is quite extensive, having good shops filled with
modern tools. Several ships have already been built here, and two
men-of-war are now upon the stocks--another evidence of so-called
civilization. Japan, you see, is ambitious. All the officials,
foremen, and mechanics, are natives, and these have proved their
ability in every department. The wages paid surprise us. All
branches are about upon an equality. Painters, moulders,
blacksmiths, carpenters, machinists, all get the same
compensation--from 25 to 40 cents per day, according to their
respective value as workmen; common labor, outside, 18 cents; shop
labor, inside, 25 cents; foreman of department, $80 per month. Work,
nine hours per day, every tenth day being a day of rest
corresponding to our Sunday. In addition to the two men-of-war under
construction, the machinery for which is all designed and
manufactured here, the Emperor is having built for his private use a
large side-wheel yacht, which promises to be magnificent. However
poor a nation may be, or however depreciated its currency, if it set
up an emperor, king, or queen, improper personal expenditure
inevitably follows. Even as good a woman as Queen Victoria, probably
the most respectable woman who ever occupied a throne--such a
character as one would not hesitate to introduce to his family
circle, which is saying much for a monarch--will squander thirty
thousand pounds per annum of the people's money on a private yacht
which she has used but a few times, and which is one of three she
insists upon keeping at the State's expense. It is the old story:
make any human being believe he is _born_ to position and he becomes
arbitrary and inconsiderate of those who have exalted him. Serves
the foolish ones right, I suppose is the proper verdict. But one is
not indignant at the worship of their emperor by the Japanese: he is
a real ruler, has power, and stands firmly upon divine right. The
Japanese are yet children politically; but the English should be out
of their swaddling-clothes, surely.

The captain being high in command, and this being his first visit
to the arsenal since his return from a tour round the world, he
was received by the officials with manifestations of delight. We
had another opportunity of seeing the bowing practice in its
fullest development. The various foremen as they approached bowed
three times almost to the ground, and in some cases they went
first upon their knees and struck the floor three times with their
foreheads. We were afterward informed that only a few years ago
these would have added to the obeisance by extending the arms to
their full length and placing the palms of the hands flat upon the
ground; now this is omitted, and I have no doubt, as intelligence
spreads, less and less of this deference will be exacted. But up
to this date it may safely be said Japan is in the condition of
Sir Pertinax MacSycophant, who, it will be remembered, admitted
that his success came from "booing." He "never could stand strecht
in the presence of a great man;" no more can a Japanese.

My writing has just been interrupted by another earthquake shock.
My chair began to tremble, then the house; I could not write, and
looking up I saw Vandy standing in amazement. For a few moments it
seemed as if we were rocking to pieces, and that the end of all
things had come. I shall never forget the sensation. The motion of
a ship rolling at sea transferred to land, where you have the
solid earth and heavy stone walls surrounding and threatening to
fall upon you, is far from agreeable; but it passed away, and old
Mother Earth became steady once more.

The way to buy in Japan is not by visiting the shops, for there
nothing is displayed, and a stranger has infinite difficulty in
learning where certain articles are to be found; but just intimate
to your "boy" what you wish, and at your door in a few minutes
stand not one or two merchants, but five or six, all bowing as you
pass in or out, and awaiting master's pleasure to examine their
wares. They leave any articles you may wish to decide upon, and
the result is that one's rooms become perfect bazaars. The most
unpleasant feature connected with purchasing is that everything is
a matter of bargain. A price is named, and you are expected to
make an offer. Vandy is a great success at this game, and seems to
enjoy it. I am strictly prohibited from interfering, and so escape
all trouble. It is always comforting to know that one's interests
are in much abler hands than his own, and I always have this
pleasure when Vandy is about.

Wherever we go, Fusiyama looks down upon us. What a beautiful cone
it is, and how grandly it pierces the heavens, its summit clad
with perpetual snow! No wonder that the Japanese represent it on
so many of their articles. Thousands of pilgrims flock to it
annually from all parts of the Empire, for it is their sacred
mount and the gods reward such as worship at this shrine. It was
once an active volcano; but there has been no eruption since about
1700, when ashes were thrown from it into Yeddo, sixty miles away.
The crater is nearly five hundred feet deep. Fusiyama stands alone
among mountains, a vast pyramid rising as Cheops does from the
plain, no "rascally comparative" near to dispute its sway.

       *       *       *       *       *

WEDNESDAY, November 27.

We sail to-day for Shanghai, leaving Yokohama with sincere regret;
nor shall we soon forget the good, kind faces of those who have done
so much to make our visit to Japan an agreeable one. Had it been
possible to remain until Saturday I should have been greatly tempted
to do so to accept an invitation received to respond to a toast at
St. Andrew's banquet. It would surely have stirred me to hold forth
on Scotland's glory to my fellow-countrymen in Japan; but this had
to be foregone. At Kiobe the steamer lay for twenty-four hours, and
this enabled us to run up by rail to Kioto, the former residence of
the Mikado, reputed to be the Paris of Japan. The city itself
deserves this reputation about as well as Cincinnati does that of
our American Paris, which I see some one has called it. Kioto is
only a mass of poor one-story buildings, but its situation is
beautiful, and cannot probably be equalled elsewhere in the Empire,
and this one can justly say of Cincinnati as well, while the beauty
of Paris is of the city and not at all rural. There are more pretty
toy villas embowered in trees upon the little hills about Kioto than
we saw in all other parts of Japan. The temples at Kioto are much
inferior to those at Shibba. Our journey enabled us to see about
seventy miles of the interior, and we were again impressed by the
evidences on every hand of a teeming population. Gangs of men and
women were everywhere at work upon small patches of ground, six or
seven persons being busily engaged sometimes on less than one acre.
It is not farming; there is in Japan scarcely such a thing as
farming in our sense; it is a system of gardening such as we see in
the neighborhood of large cities. Compared with that prevalent
throughout the whole country, I have seen nothing equal to it in
thoroughness, not even in Belgium.

We are upon the old steamer Costa Rica, now belonging to the
Japanese Company, which recently purchased this and other boats from
the Pacific Mail Company. Among our cargo is a large lot of live
turkeys which some pushing Jap is taking over to Shanghai for
Christmas; and listen, you favored souls who revel in the famous
bird at a dollar a head, your fellow countrymen in China have to pay
ten dollars for their Christmas turkey. It is said the Chinese
climate is too damp for the noble bird; but it flourishes in Japan.
I wish the exporter who thus develops the resources of his country
much profit on his venture. But it strikes me that, instead of the
eagle, the more useful gobbler has superior claims to be voted the
national bird of America. "A turkey for a dollar!" repeated the
shipper as I told him our price; "a turkey for a dollar--what a
country!" The climate of Northern China is not favorable for
Europeans, and many take a run over to Japan to recuperate, a fact
which argues much for the future of Japan. Although our ship belongs
to the Japanese, the servants are generally Chinamen, and the agent
explains this by informing us that while the former do very well
until they arrive at the age of manhood, they then begin to develop
more ambitious ideas and cannot be managed, while with the Chinese a
"boy" (a servant throughout the East is called "boy") is always a
boy, and is constantly on the watch to serve his master. Again, the
Japs are pugnacious, a race of little game-cocks, always in for a
fight, especially with a Chinaman. The captain told us the other day
a great big Chinaman had complained to him that one of the Japs had
abused him. Upon calling up the belligerent, he proved to be such a
small specimen that the captain asked the sufferer why he hadn't
picked him up and thrown him overboard. The complaint was dismissed:
served the big fellow right. But some missionary should expound the
civilized doctrine to him, per revised edition, which reads: "When
smitten on the one cheek, turn to the smiter the other also, but if
he smites you on that, _go for him_." To-morrow is to be one of the
great days of our trip, for we shall enter the famous inland sea of
Japan at daybreak. Will it be fine to-morrow? is the question with
all on board. The signs are earnestly discussed. The sun sets
favorably, and I quote Shakespeare to them, which settles the
question:

  "The weary sun hath made a golden set,
   And by the bright track of his fiery car
   Gives token of a goodly day to-morrow."

Let to-morrow be fair, whatever we may miss hereafter. This is the
universal sentiment.

     *       *       *       *       *

SATURDAY, November 30.

What a day this has been! Many a rich experience which seemed
grand enough never to fade from the memory may pass into oblivion,
but no mortal can ever sail through the inland sea of Japan on a
fine day and cease to remember it till the day he dies. It
deserves its reputation as the most beautiful voyage in the world;
at least I cannot conceive how, taking the elements of earth,
water and sky, anything more exquisitely beautiful could be
produced from them. Entering the narrow sea at sunrise, we sail
for three hundred and fifty miles through three thousand pretty
islands,

  "Which seem to stand
   To sentinel enchanted land."

These divide the water, making, not one but a dozen pretty lakes in
view at once. It is the Lakes of Killarney, or the English or Scotch
lakes, multiplied a hundred-fold; but instead of the islands and
mountains being in pasture, they are cultivated to their very tops,
terraced in every form, in order to utilize every rod of ground. On
the shores cluster villages, nestling in sheltered nooks, while the
water swarms with the sails of tiny fishing boats, giving a sense of
warm, happy life throughout. These sail-boats add greatly to the
beauty of the scene. I counted at one time from the bow of our
steamer, without looking back, ninety-seven sails glistening in the
sun, while on the hills were seen everywhere gangs of people at work
upon their little farm-gardens. It is a panorama of busy, crowded
life, but life under most beautiful surroundings, from beginning to
end, and we all vote that never before have we, in a like space of
time, seen so much of fairy-land as upon this ever-memorable day. We
begin to understand how the thirty odd millions of the Japanese
exist upon so small an area. The rivers and seas abound in fish; the
hills and valleys under irrigation and constant labor grow their
rice, millet, and vegetables. A few dollars per year supply all the
clothing needed, and a few dollars build their light wooden houses.
Thus they have everything they need, or consider necessary, and are
happy as the day is long, certain of one established fact in nature,
to wit, that there is no place like Japan; and no doubt they daily
and hourly thank their stars that their lines have fallen in
pleasant places, and pity us--slaves to imaginary wants--who deny
ourselves the present happiness they consider it wisdom to enjoy, in
vain hopes of banquetting to surfeit at some future time, which
always comes too late.

On emerging from this fairy scene, we encountered a gale upon the
China Sea, which lasted for the few hours we were upon it before
reaching Nagasaki, the last port of Japan. Here, two hundred years
ago, the Dutch secured a small island, from which they traded with
Japan long before any other nation was permitted to do so. The
Catholics also had their headquarters here. They were so
successful in converting the natives that the government became
alarmed, and several thousand Christians were driven to the island
and all massacred. This was in the sixteenth century; but it is
only a few years ago that seven thousand native Catholics were
banished from this region. To-day all is changed. These fugitives
have been permitted to return, and there is entire freedom of
religious worship. Last month a return was made of professing
Christians (Catholics) in this district, and thirty-five thousand
were reported. Protestants are very few indeed.

As far as I saw in the East, here is the only real and
considerable advance made toward christianizing a people. At other
stations throughout my journey I saw only a few ignorant natives
who professed Christianity--sometimes a dozen or two, rarely
more. European residents invariably told me that these were the
dependants or servants of foreigners who held their places mainly
because of their conversion to the new faith. If dismissed, they
relapsed. One can readily see that the lowest and most
unscrupulous would be the first to fall before the almost
irresistible temptation, for a means of comfortable livelihood
seems the one serious concern of life in all the East to a degree
difficult for us in America, at least, to imagine.

I remember the dear, kind Catholic Bishop of Canton telling me
with such delicious simplicity that every workman engaged in
building the Cathedral--a work of many years and yet
unfinished--had by the grace of God been converted to Holy Mother
Church. The hotel-keeper told me afterward this so-called
conversion was a source of much amusement among the natives. Well,
be it so. I believe, myself, that the holy father is the victim of
misplaced confidence. But here in Nagasaki nothing like this can
be said. Thirty-five thousand professing Christians in a district
where there are not a hundred foreign Christian families, if half
so many, and where to be a Christian is to declare one's self of
the minority and so out of fashion, surely this does prove that
the Church has succeeded, and justifies it in hoping that ere long
this part of Japan at least will one day enter the fold.

One great reason for this undoubted success is probably that
neither the Government nor the people have the slightest objection
to missionaries, for their own religion sets but lightly on the
Japanese. With the Chinaman it is totally different. His own
religion is sacred to him, a vital force, and his gods must not be
defamed. He stands by his faith like a Covenanter. It touches the
most sacred feelings of his nature, and is everything to him. Mrs.
D. O. Hill's celebrated statue of Livingstone in Prince's Gardens,
Edinburgh, therefore, represents too truly the attitude of our
missionaries in the flowery land as well as in other so-called
heathen lands: the Bible in one hand and the pistol in the other.
In Japan the pistol is wholly unnecessary. The man of Japan
regards missionaries as harmless curiosities, and if not disposed
to trouble himself about their new ideas, he has not the least
objection to their being expounded.

There is now no established religion in Japan, Buddhism having
been abolished in 1874. The temples and priesthood are maintained
by voluntary contributions. The poor laws are simple: government
gives nine bushels of rice to every person over seventy or under
fifteen years of age, who cannot work, and the same to foundlings
under thirteen. Out of the total population of thirty-six
millions, there are only ten thousand and fifty paupers, and of
these more than a thousand are at Tokio in the workhouse.

       *       *       *       *       *

HARBOR OF NAGASAKI, MONDAY, December 2.

Vandy and I were off early this morning for the shore, and did not
return to the ship until late in the afternoon, having walked over
the high hills and down into the valleys beyond. We had a real
tramp in the country. It is here just as elsewhere, terrace upon
terrace, every foot of ground under cultivation; water carried by
men in pails, or on the backs of oxen, to the highest peaks, which
it is impossible to irrigate, and every single plant, be it rice,
millet, turnip, cabbage, or carrot, watered daily. What good
Mother Earth can be induced to yield under such attention is a
marvel. The bountiful earth has another meaning when you see what
she can be made to bring forth. Although we are in December, the
sun shines bright, and it is quite warm. I sat down several times
under the hedge-rows, and heard the constant hum of insect life
around me. Butterflies flitted about, the bees gathered honey, and
all looked and felt like a day in June. The houses of the people
which we saw were poor, and the total absence of glass causes them
to look like deserted hovels; but closer inspection showed fine
mats on the floors, and everything scrupulously clean. I counted
upon one hillside forty-seven terraces from the bottom to the top.
These are divided vertically, so that I think twenty-five feet
square would be about the average size of each patch; and as the
division of terraces is made to suit the ground, and hence very
irregularly, the appearance of a hillside in Japan is something
like that of a bed-quilt of irregular pieces. The terrace-walls
are overgrown with vines, ferns, etc., so that they appear like
low green hedges: and this adds much to the beauty of the
landscape. No wonder the cultivators of these lovely spots never
dream of leaving them. Animal food is not half as important to the
Japanese as the supply of fish--indeed the former is said to be
comparatively little used, while fish of some kind or in some form
is ever present at meals. The favorite fish is the _tai_,
which is red when taken from streams with sandy bottoms, but black
when caught at the mouths of the same streams, where the dark soil
of the sea begins. A curious parallel case is seen in the black
and red pines of this country: in sandy soils they grow red, while
in the softer black soil they are dark. Transplant the two
varieties and they change color. The same law, you see, with fish
and plant. We are all creatures of our environment. Therefore let
us choose our companions and surroundings well. To know the best
that has been said and done in the world is no doubt much; to be
planted and to grow among those who have done the greatest work
and who live up to the best standard in our day and generation is
surely equally important.

We had an alarm of fire oft the Belgic in mid-ocean, but this
morning we had the real article. I had just parted from the
captain at the stern of the ship, intending to go ashore, when,
walking forward, I saw dense volumes of smoke issuing from the
walking-beam pit, and in a few moments I heard the cry of fire
from below. All was in a bustle at once, but the crew got finely
to work. Fortunately, although there was no steam in the main
boilers, the small donkey boiler was full, and the pumps were put
to work. Meanwhile boats from the various men-of-war in the harbor
with hand fire-engines came to our assistance. The steamer is an
old wooden craft, and I knew her cargo was combustible. Were the
smoke ever to give place to flame, panic was sure to ensue, and
not one of the small native boats that had until now been
clustering around us could then be induced to approach; indeed,
they had already all rowed off. There was one lady on board, Mrs.
McK., a veritable Princess of Thule from the Island of Lewes, and
I decided that she had better be taken off with her sick child at
once; so, bribing a greedy native by the immense reward of a whole
dollar (a large fee here, small as it seems at home) to come
alongside, I grasped the baby and followed the mother down the
gangway, and remained at a safe distance until the danger was
over. A few minutes more, and the Costa Rica would have followed
her sister ship, the America, which some years ago took fire under
similar circumstances in the harbor of Yokohama, and was
completely destroyed. Fortunately we are about done with wooden
steamships; otherwise they should not be permitted to run as
passenger vessels.

The post-office department of Japan is of recent origin, having
been established in 1871; yet in 1881, after only ten years'
growth, it carried ninety-five millions of letters, newspapers,
books, etc. Thirty millions of these were post-cards. Three
millions of telegrams were also transmitted in that year. Perhaps
no statement will give one a clearer idea than this of the rapid
progress of this strange country in the ways of the West.

Japan has only two short lines of railway for thirty-six millions
of people--a population nearly equal to that of Great Britain: one
eighteen miles from Yokohama to Tokio, the other seventy miles
from Hiogo to Kioto. This seems a scanty allowance; nevertheless
it is not probable that more than a few hundred miles of rail will
be built for centuries. The habits and poverty of the people, and
in many districts the topography of the country, are such as to
render railways unsuitable. The main highways are, however, kept
in admirable order. I was amused with the classification of these.
Those of the first class are such as lead from the capital to the
treaty ports; of the second class those lines leading to the
national shrines. Commerce has thus usurped the first place. Both
the first and the second class roads are maintained by the General
Government as being national affairs. Various grades of roads
follow, some being maintained by large districts; others, of local
importance, by taxes upon a smaller area; but all under the strict
supervision of central officials at Tokio.

Not the least surprising feature in the revolution going forward
so peacefully in Japan is the prompt adoption of the newspaper as
one of the essentials of life. A few years ago the official
Gazette, read only by officials and containing nothing of general
interest, was the only publication in the Empire; to-day several
hundred newspapers are published, many of them daily. A censorship
of the press still exists, however, and leads to the usual mode of
evasion. Pungent political articles are conveyed under cover of
criticisms ostensibly upon the blunders of lands not so
enlightened as Japan. Here is a specimen: "In America during the
Civil War paper currency was issued and made legal tender. At
every successive issue the premium rose higher and higher till the
currency was not worth more than a third of its face. The Southern
States followed in the same path, but they kept on till their
issues were found to be good for about one purpose only--to line
trunks withal--such fools these Americans be. Happy Japan! blessed
with rulers of preeminent ability, who keep the finances of our
land in such creditable form."

The fact was that Japanese currency was then at 22 per cent,
discount and rapidly declining in value under successive issues,
just as it had done in America. Such articles are no doubt far
more effective than open, undisguised assaults could possibly be,
for the cleverness of the evasion gives additional zest to the
attack. The Press is a hard dog to muzzle, and, like dogs in
general, only vicious when muzzled. The Japanese will soon find it
safer to "let Truth and Error grapple" in the full face of day,
for they are not slow to learn.

       *       *       *       *       *

TUESDAY, December 3.

The turbulent China Sea has passed into a proverb. The Channel
passage in a gale, I suppose, comes nearest to it. We started to
cross this sea at daylight, and surely we have reason to be
grateful. It is as smooth as a mirror, the winds are hushed, and
as I write the shores of Japan fade peacefully from view. I cannot
help thinking how improbable that I shall ever see them again;
but, however that may be, farewell for the present to Japan. Take
a stranger's best wishes for your future.

Our cargo shows something of the resources of the country. It
amounts to eight hundred tons, comprising seaweed--a special kind
of which the Chinese are fond--ginseng, camphor, timber,
isinglass, Japan piece-goods, ingot copper, etc. Every week this
line takes to China a similar cargo, and the trade is rapidly
extending. This steamship company is worth noting as an evidence
of what Japanese enterprise is doing. The principal owner, the
Commodore Garrison of Japan, had a small beginning, but now runs
some thirty-seven steamers between the various Japanese ports.
Under the management of Mr. Krebs, a remarkable Dane, this company
beat off the Pacific Mail Company from the China trade, and
actually purchased their ships. There are many things found on
these vessels which our Atlantic companies might imitate with
advantage.

I believe I mentioned that Japan, not to be behind her Western
neighbors, had created a public debt, which now amounts to about
$300,000,000, but $250,000,000 of this was used in payment of the
two hundred and sixty-six daimios and their numerous retainers,
when government took over the land to itself. Each of these
potentates had vested rights in a certain proportion of the yield
of the soil of his district, and this was commuted by the
government into so much in its bonds, a fixed land tax being
substituted for the irregular exactions of former landlords. On
every side I hear that this has greatly improved the condition of
the population--made the people more contented, and at the same
time vastly augmented the products of the soil. Not less than
three millions of the population shared in this operation.

The nationalization of the land is under discussion in England,
and it is conceded that some change has to be made. Here is Japan
proving the results of nationalization, while Denmark shows what
private ownership of small pieces of land can do under a system of
cumulative taxation in proportion to the size of the estate held.
One of these two systems is likely to prevail in England some day.
Meanwhile, here is food for thought for the British tax-payer: out
of seventy-five million yens (L15,000,000) of revenue raised by
Japan, forty-three million comes from the land tax. The tax on
alcoholic liquors yields about seventeen millions more.

Since my visit to Japan an imperial decree has been published,
promising that a national assembly shall meet in 1890; so we have
the foundations of representative government almost at hand.
Surely no other nation ever abandoned its traditions and embraced
so rapidly those of a civilization of an opposite character. This
is not development under the law of slow evolution; it seems more
like a case of spontaneous generation. Presto, change! and here
before our very eyes is presented the strange spectacle of the
most curious, backward, feudalistic Eastern nation turning into a
Western one of the most advanced type.

That Japan will succeed in her effort to establish a central
government, under something like our ideas of freedom and law, and
that she has such resources as will enable her to maintain it and
educate her people, I am glad to be able to say I believe; but
much remains to be done requiring in the race the exercise of
solid qualities, the possession of which I find some Europeans
disposed to deny them. They have travelled, perhaps, quite fast
enough, and I look for a temporary triumph of the more
conservative party. But the seed is sown, and Japan will move,
upon the whole, in the direction of progress. And so, once more,
farewell, Japan; and China, now almost within sight, all hail!

       *       *       *       *       *

CHINA.

In one respect at least pilgrims from other lands must bow to the
empire we are about to visit. It is the oldest form of civilized
government on earth. While the English monarchy boasts its
uninterrupted course of eight hundred years, and America has just
celebrated its first century of existence, this remarkable people
live under a government which has been substantially unchanged for
four thousand long years. The first authenticated dynasty dates
from 2345 B.C., and what is now China has been under one central
government for nearly two thousand five hundred years. Even the
Papacy, the most venerable of existing Western institutions, is
young compared to this. There was something in the reply of the
mandarin to the boast of one of our people as to the superiority
of our system: "Wait until it is tried!" To a Chinaman a thousand
years or so seems too short to prove anything. Theirs alone has
stood the test of ages. That the Chinese are a great race goes
without saying. Four hundred millions (nearly one-third of the
human race) existing for thousands of years under one unchanging
government, riding out the storms which have overwhelmed all other
nations; nay, even absorbing into themselves the Tartar hordes,
who came as conquerors, and making them Chinese against their
will. Such a record tells a story indeed! At a date so remote that
Egypt and Assyria were the great Western powers, when Athens and
Troy had just been founded, and Rome was not even thought of,
these people were governed much as they are now, and since A.D. 67
have published a daily Peking _Gazette_, of which (thanks to
our intelligent "host of the Garter," Mr. Janssen) we have secured
a copy. We are all but of yesterday compared to the Heathen
Chinee, and it is impossible to sit down and scribble glibly of
such a people. In Japan there is no record. It is a new race
appearing almost for the first time among civilized nations. It
has given the world nothing, but how widely different here! It is
to China the world owes the compass, gunpowder, porcelain, and
even the art of printing, and to her also alone the spectacle of a
people ruled by a code of laws and morals embracing the most
minute particulars, written two thousand four hundred years ago,
and taught to this day in the schools as the rules of life. It is
an old and true saying that almost any system of religion would
make one good enough if it were properly obeyed; certainly that of
Confucius would do so. I have been deeply impressed with his
greatness and purity. Dr. Davis writes in his work on China:
"Confucius embodied in sententious maxims the first principles of
morals and of government, and the purity and excellence of some of
his precepts will bear comparison with even those of the Gospel."
In Thornton's History of China I find this noteworthy passage: "It
may excite surprise, and even incredulity, to state that the
golden rule of our Saviour had been inculcated by Confucius five
centuries before almost in the same words." If any of my readers
wish a rare treat, I advise him to add at least the first volume
of the Rev. Dr. Legge's Life of Confucius to his library
immediately, and let him not entertain the idea that the sage was
a heathen or an unbeliever; far, very far from that, for one of
his most memorable passages explains that all worship belongs to
Shangti (the Supreme Ruler); no matter what forms or symbols are
used, the great God alone being the only true object of worship.
But I must resist this fit of Confucianism, reserving, however,
the privilege of regaling you with more of it by and bye, for
really it is too good not to be scattered among you. Meanwhile,
remember well what Matthew Arnold says:

  "Children of men! the unseen Power, whose eye
   For ever doth accompany mankind,
   Hath look'd on no religion scornfully
   That men did ever find.

   Which has not taught weak wills how much they can?
   Which has not fall'n on the dry heart like rain?
   Which has not cried to sunk, self-weary man:
   _Thou must be born again!_"

       *       *       *       *       *

THURSDAY, December 5.

We reached Shanghai Thursday morning, and found excellent
accommodations at the Astor House, in the American settlement. The
Chinese Government has set apart for the accommodation of
foreigners a strip of land, about six miles long and one mile
wide, fronting the river. This is divided among the English,
French, and Americans. During the Taeping rebellion a few years
ago, thousands of natives flocked into this territory and found a
refuge under the foreign flags, and today it contains more than
seventy thousand Chinese, who do most of the retail business of
the city. The foreign population does not exceed two thousand. The
streets are broad, and as well cared for as in an English town,
and it is lighted with gas, has a fine steam fire organization,
and is thoroughly drained. It is here the natives of this district
are learning their first lesson of Western civilization, and at
length some impression has been made upon this hitherto immovable
mass and it begins to move. Mandarins come from the country to
enjoy a drive in the streets, for, let it not be forgotten, there
is not a street or road in the region, outside of the reservation,
in which a horse can travel; only footpaths, where a wheelbarrow
pushed by a man is the only possible vehicle. Now several wealthy
Chinese have set up their carriages, and may frequently be seen
driving; and I learn from many that when any are compelled to
visit their former residences elsewhere, they return to Shanghai
declaring that they could not live any longer in the old style.
But think of one-third of the race living at this late day without
a mile of railroad or of telegraph, or even of macadamized roads!
Communication in China is solely by means of the rivers, canals,
and small branches which have been led from the main channels to
every acre of ground for irrigating purposes, and by narrow
footpaths between the fields. But some of us will live to see this
changed. I saw in a newspaper an official notice permitting the
first telegraph line to be built. True, it is to be only a few
miles in length, extending from the sea to the port of Peking
(Tien-Tsin), but this is of course only a beginning. The question
of railroads is more serious, and what think you is the one
obstacle to their introduction? Graves--the "tombs of our
ancestors." China is one vast cemetery. Go where you will, in any
direction, the mounds of the dead intrude themselves upon you at
every step. There are no cemeteries or places set apart for burial
purposes; on the contrary, the Chinaman seems to prefer having his
dead buried on his own land, and as near to him as practicable. In
this neighborhood their mode of sepulture is revolting. The
coffins are not put into a grave at all, but are laid directly on
the surface of the ground and covered with but a few inches of
earth; and it is not at all uncommon for them to be wholly
exposed, simply laid out in the fields, and so close to the
roadside--I mean to the main roads built by Europeans near their
settlements--that you can almost touch them with the end of your
walking-stick as you pass. The stench from such coffins became so
offensive last year at the rifle range that the European
authorities had to enter complaint to the Chinese Mandarin. I was,
like all others, at first much shocked at the sight of these
evidences of mortality. One day I stood and counted a hundred and
thirty-four different mounds and exposed coffins within sight. I
am glad to say that in other parts of China this custom does not
prevail, the dead being buried in graves, and walls built above
them in the shape of a horseshoe. As is well known, the Chinese
worship their ancestors, and believe that much of their happiness
depends upon the respect shown to those to whom they owe their
lives. Cases have been known where successive afflictions have
been attributed to some defect in the resting-places of the dead;
their ancestors, "after life's fitful fever," were not sleeping
well, and at great expense the bones have been removed to another
place; but it is an extreme case when they venture to disturb the
dead. Every true son of the Empire of the Sun echoes the anathema
of Shakespeare,

  "And curst be he who moves my bones."

One special feature of the Flowery Land is, I think, the
repugnance of the people to debt, or to credits in any form. As I
have remarked, they have no banks of issue; no promises to pay for
the Celestials; they deal only in the coin itself. All debts must
be paid at the beginning of each year. The Chinaman who does not
settle every account and enter upon the new year without an
obligation is accounted either very unfortunate or very regardless
of the duties of life. This aversion to debt, perhaps, accounts
for the fact that these four hundred millions of people had not a
penny of national debt until four years ago. But they have just
made a loan of $12,000,000, I believe, the first ever made by
China in all its thousands of years' history. This may be taken,
perhaps, as another proof that the empire is influenced by Western
ideas, but one cannot help regretting that her long reign of
freedom from debt should at last be stained, even for so paltry an
amount. If I were a Chinese statesman, I would never rest until
the last farthing of this debt was paid off. The fashion nowadays
in America is to urge that it is paying off its debt much too
fast. I am sorry for this. What an example to all lands we shall
give when the last bond of the nation is cancelled at Washington
amid public rejoicings! A republic's part is to give less advanced
nations, still under the influence of feudal institutions, such
lessons as this will be. Do not let us, however, underrate
England's part in. such a work. She has reduced her public debt
wonderfully, and the next twenty years is to see seventy millions
sterling more extinguished, unless legislation now existing for
this end is interfered with.

The general government of China is a very economical one, its
total revenue being only about $125,000,000 (L25,000,000). Of this
$15,000,000 is spent upon the army, a sum which for 400,000,000
people compares very favorably with that expended by other
nations. China has outgrown the so-called heroic age, in which
England still dwells, and has little need of armies. A government
not worth thirty cents (fifteen pence) per year for each
inhabitant, which is the cost in China, is not worth having.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY, December 6.

In our stroll to-day Vandy and I came upon one of the gates of the
old city, of which there are six in a wall three miles in
circumference, and entered. It contains 300,000 people. We walked
some distance through its filthy, narrow alleys, and saw the poor
wretches in their dens working at all kinds of trades, from the
forging of iron to the production of Joss-money, but the
villainous smells soon overpowered me, and I had to get Vandy to
escort me out. He can go through anything of this kind without
flinching, and means to return; but I have seen enough of it, and
am sorry that human beings have to exist under such conditions.
The Chinese have no coined currency except a small bronze piece
worth one-tenth of a cent, called "cash." It has a hole in the
centre, and when a native goes to market he puts several lots of
them on strings, fifty or a hundred on each string, and throws
them round his neck; think of it, one thousand pieces, ten strings
of one hundred each, to make a dollar! Sometimes they are carried
in the market-basket. In larger operations Mexican and American
dollars are used, but away from the coast people decline to take
even these, insisting upon silver cast in the form of a horseshoe
and called "sice." This silver is hoarded here, and also in India,
and were it not for this its value would probably fall to a point
which would rule it out of the list of precious metals. The evils
of a silver currency are obvious to all here. Its value has
changed three times in one day since we have been in the country.
Business is seriously disturbed, and suffers from this cause, and
it is to such a plight that our misled silverites at home would
reduce us!

       *       *       *       *       *

SATURDAY, December 7.

To-day we walked through the fish and vegetable markets. It was
funny to see the people making their purchases. Each one carries a
small stick with a weight attached to it. This serves as a
weighing-beam, and every fowl, fish, and vegetable is carefully
weighed by the customer. No cheating of a brother Celestial by the
seller. We pass now and then a shop where nothing is dealt in but
Joss-money; hundreds in every place are engaged in its
manufacture. It is made out of thin gold and silver paper, in the
horseshoe ingot form of genuine "sice." I bought a box containing
eight pieces for thirty cents. Some of it also is made in
imitation of silver dollars. This bogus money is laid upon the
altars of the temples as offerings to the gods, who are supposed
to find as much use for it as if it were genuine; and no doubt
this is the case. It would therefore be a great pity, says the
Heathen Chinee, to waste the real article, although I doubt not
the priests would infinitely prefer it.

We attended a "paper-hunt" in the afternoon. Between forty and
fifty riders, all Europeans, on small horses, started across
country, the route having been previously laid down by means of
small pieces of white paper scattered at every point where one of
the innumerable little creeks was to be crossed. The finish was a
rare sight. The banks of the creeks were very muddy, falls were
numerous, and several of the riders came in besmirched from head
to foot. Europeans take to horses here, and a race-course is
maintained. The animals are a small breed from the north, which
are now known as Shanghai ponies. I do not think I could enjoy the
sport of paper-hunting here. The exposed coffins and graves one
has to gallop over from end to end of the hunt are not calculated
to enhance one's pleasure; but perhaps one would in time get used
even to them, though I doubt it.

It was sad to see the roadway which had been prepared for the
railroad from Woosung, at the mouth of the river, to this city, a
distance of about twelve miles. The rails had actually been laid
in some places when a decree from Peking ordered their removal. No
better location in the empire could have been found to prove the
advantages of railway travel, and I believe, if it had been
finished, the Chinese would have quickly appreciated the benefits
to be derived from it. Britain will some day find in China its
best field for railway enterprise. By the time we next visit
Shanghai we expect to see not only the rails restored to this
line, but also many other miles in successful operation.

       *       *       *       *       *

MONDAY, December 9.

We visited the ship-yard of Messrs. Boyd & Co., and found none but
native workmen employed. Blacksmiths receive about five dollars
per week, machinists six dollars; carpenters, sixty to sixty-five
cents per day. But this concern pays high wages, and requires its
men to equal Europeans, which I am told they do. Common gang labor
is contracted for with a head man, who engages to supply day by
day the number of coolies wanted at twenty cents a day per man.
Mr. Grant, the senior partner, told me he was buying Belgian iron
in large lots, assorted sizes, for L4 10s. per gross ton--just
about one cent per pound; ship plates at L6, equal to $29 per
gross ton, free on ship at Antwerp. Such figures prove the
severity of the struggle for existence among the iron
manufacturers of Europe.

The servants at the hotel pay a contractor two dollars per month
for food, they not being permitted to eat anything at the hotel. A
coolie's board costs about five cents per day. For this he gets an
abundance of coarse rice and cabbage spiced with pieces of dried
fish and pickles, and upon such a diet lives from year to year.
Clothing is estimated at two to three dollars per year. This is
the country of low prices, where one eschews luxuries and comes
down to first principles. Cab fare is five cents per mile for
ginrikshaws, which have been introduced from Japan, and are
generally used in Shanghai. At Tokio I remember cab fare was even
cheaper. We paid only eight cents per hour for a man and his
carriage, or seventy-five cents for the entire day. European
society here is quite extensive, and very pleasant and hospitable.
We are indebted to kind friends for numerous attentions. As
General Bailey, our worthy Consul-General, is a public official, I
may be permitted to express to him my special thanks. He was
unremitting in his efforts to render our visit agreeable. It is
from such men that America is to draw its trained diplomatists
when Civil-Service Reform has done its needed work.

We attended last night a very good amateur theatrical performance.
Shanghai society was present in force, and in full evening dress.
The preponderance of fine-looking young men, and the almost total
absence of young ladies, was most marked. The number of married
ladies was not great. In answer to my inquiry where the young
ladies were, I was informed that there were but few in town. One
was pointed out, but as she was engaged she scarcely counted. If
ladies will only be contented with unremitting attentions from a
crowd of handsome beaux, this is their paradise; but, as our lady
friend explained, none of these fine fellows can afford to marry:
they are clerks and assistants in the European houses, the
partners of which unfortunately are married already. I think it
but fair to mention this for the benefit of any of my fair young
friends who might otherwise think of visiting the East. The
absence of young ladies renders the taking of female parts by the
opposite sex a necessity. A splendid "singing chambermaid" of this
kind, dressed and looking the part to perfection, but with a deep
bass voice, caused peals of laughter every time he spoke. During
the evening there was a song cleverly introduced and sung by a
brawny Scot--a parody upon "May I like a soldier fall," beginning,

  "Oh! may I like a Scotchman fall
   Upon St. Andrew's Day."

It appears the Scotch residents had just been celebrating that
memorable night, having brought up from Hong Kong no less a
personage than the head piper of the Highlander Regiment to grace
the festival. But the pipes proved too much for the more
enthusiastic of the party, and capturing the piper about three
o'clock in the morning, they compelled him to march at their head
playing through the town. It may be readily surmised that

  "If no fou, they just had plenty."

As long, however, as the martial strains continued, they managed,
arm and arm, to keep upright and together, but, unfortunately,
from some cause or other not clearly explained, at the turn of the
street Donald himself lost his footing, the bagpipes ceased, and
then, surging one against the other, without the music to keep
them in step, the mass was laid low, yelling to the last, however,
the "March of the Cameron Men." "Oh, what a fall was there, my
countrymen!" The Central Hotel was fortunately not far off, and by
the aid of wheelbarrows they were safely conveyed thither and
taken care of until morning. Ah, well, let the censorious take
note. This is not the first time, as the world knows, when the
sound of the pibroch has kept Scotchmen shoulder to shoulder, "one
stepping where the other fell," when upon them lay the issue of
the fight; nor shall it be the last. Burke pardoned something to
the spirit of liberty, and shall we do less to the august shade of
St. Andrew? Heaven forbid!

While bemoaning the absence of foreign young ladies here and in
Japan, I may as well tell those at home something of the marriage
customs of the East, for Japan, China, and India all have much in
common here. First and foremost, then, please understand that the
couple about to be married have nothing whatever to do with the
affair. The match has been made by the parents, and as a rule
neither has seen the other until after the contract has been
closed; and in many cases it is thought advisable that they should
meet for the first time when the ceremony begins. It is considered
one of the most important duties of a mother to select a wife for
each of her sons as he arrives at maturity, as a failure to do
this might involve the fearful catastrophe of a break in the
worship of the family's ancestors, and indeed of her own and her
husband's ashes, for there might be no men to perform the sacred
rites over them. The parents of the young men take the initiative,
but how to propose is said to be even more embarrassing than it
would be to the son himself, as a refusal implies that the lady's
parents consider the proposal much beneath them. There exists,
therefore, a class of "marriage brokers," who keep themselves
informed of the eligible sons and daughters in their circle, and
can sound the parents, name the _dot_ to be given or
required, and suggest and finally bring about a satisfactory
alliance without wounding the family pride upon either side. The
Chinese are very superstitious, and no union takes place without
the astrologer's sanction. He must consult the stars and see that
there is proper conjunction. If all is favorable, the marriage
takes place.

But now, my lady friends, don't imagine that the happy pair set up
a separate establishment, as you expect to do when you marry. No;
the wife goes in every case to reside with her mother-in-law, to
whom, as also to her husband's father, she renders implicit
obedience. This obedience to parents is the most conspicuous duty
in their religion. Should the daughter-in-law be disrespectful,
even, to her husband's parents, these would be upheld in putting
her away, even against the wish of her husband; and unless the son
happened to have an independent income or means of support, which
is very rarely the case, his parents would select for him another
wife who knew her duty better. The deference exacted and bestowed
not only by children but by grown men and women to their parents,
is wholly inconceivable by Americans; but, remember, their
religion teaches them that those from whom they derive existence
are entitled to their worship. No priest is required at a
marriage. The ceremony always takes place at the man's house, the
bride coming from her parents in grand procession through the
streets in a sedan chair with its blinds closely drawn, the
presents being ostentatiously displayed by men carrying them in
front. We saw several of these processions. I cannot give a tithe
of all the customs observed; they would fill pages. But one is
significant; the bride is required to kneel before the husband's
family tablet, and to worship his ancestors, her own being from
that moment apparently of no account to her, and her father gives
her, as his parting injunction, the command to yield hereafter to
her new parents the obedience and reverence hitherto his due.

When the entire day has been spent in the ceremonies required,
dinner for the couple is announced, and they are left alone with
each other for the first time in their lives; but she may not
partake one morsel of the feast, and, harder still, perhaps, not
one syllable must she speak. Etiquette demands that she "sit in
silence, grave and dignified," and she cannot break fast upon her
wedding day. The woman's chief study is a book giving minute
instructions for her guidance through life. In this are prescribed
the three great duties of woman: 1, obedience when a child to her
parents; 2, obedience when a wife to her husband; 3, obedience
when a widow to her eldest son. The government of man is thus
secured for the weaker vessel from the cradle to the grave. No
Eastern man could be made to believe that the influence of the
masculine intellect is not absolutely essential for the well-being
of the female; and so it undoubtedly will be in the East as long
as woman is uneducated. It is in America we find woman in her
highest development, higher even than the English standard, simply
because in the best circles she receives an education nearer to
that of man than is given her elsewhere.

By many such curious customs is secured the entire absorption of
the woman, her total eclipse as a separate individuality; there is
nothing left of her as far as law and usage can destroy her
rights. This is the Eastern idea. But she has her triumph later.
As a wife she knows there is little for her. Divorce is almost
sure unless she bear a son; but when, in the language of
Scripture, "a man-child is born"--presto change! she is a mother,
supreme, invested with a halo of sanctity which secures rank and
reverence from all. She becomes by this the equal of her lord, and
must be worshipped like him, and jointly with him, by succeeding
generations, for Confucius enjoins upon every son the erection of
the family tablets, to father and mother alike. Nor is her rule
confined to her own children, but, as before stated, to their
children as well to the latest day of her life, and the older she
becomes the more she is reverenced as being nearer to heaven,
dearer to the gods; and it is considered of much moment to any
family to be able to boast a great-great-grandmother living.

Do not mourn too much over the sad fate of a young Chinaman
compelled to marry one whom he has never seen, for indeed there
seems little difference between the young ladies of China. Thousands
of years of seclusion, of unvarying customs, have at last moulded
women into the same form, mentally and physically, and anything like
individuality can exist only to a small degree, and in exceptional
natures. They are as like as peas, and one may as well marry one as
another. If the husband has not the joys of love, neither has he the
anxieties pertaining to that super-sensitive condition; for she is
not to be his constant companion, nor his companion at all if he has
not drawn a prize.

The position of woman would seem, therefore, to be almost entirely
different from what it is with us: in youth she is nothing there,
in old age everything; with us it is the opposite. The "just mean"
between the two would probably yield better results than either.
In China a man may marry more than one woman, but the first only
is recognized as his legal wife; all others are her servants, and
bound to wait upon and obey her; and should there be children,
these are considered as children of the legal wife only, and it is
her they must worship, and not their real mother. Among the masses
wives are invariably bought from the parents, about ninety dollars
being a fair market price among poor people. This sum is supposed
to recompense them for the outlay involved in rearing the young
girl. But this custom is valuable in this, that the possession of
so large a sum by a young workingman is the best possible
guarantee that the son-in-law has acquired steady habits, and is
competent to provide for his family. If a test of this nature
could be applied with us, I think paterfamilias would not regard
it as the worst of institutions. These Chinese have ideas that are
sometimes worth thinking over.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY, December 13.

Our intended trip up the Yang-tse has been interfered with by a
storm of rain and dense fog, but the days never seem long. We get
a little time to read up. Our book-table shows seven important
works on China and its people--all interesting. To-day is marked
by a notable invitation to dinner extended to us through General
Bailey. We are to have the honor--one not often bestowed upon
globe trotters--of dining with the Mandarin.

The dinner lasted more than three hours, and was composed of I
don't know how many courses. I depended upon Vandy to keep count,
but he found so much to wonder at that he lost the run when in the
teens. From birds'-nest soup, which, by the way, is insipid, to
shark's fin and bamboo shoots in rapid succession, we had it all.
I thought each course would surely be the last; but finally we did
get to sweet dishes, and I knew we were approaching the end. Then
came the bowl of rice and tea, which are supposed to be able to
neutralize the mess which has gone before. Our host pressed all to
drink frequently of a celebrated native wine, the champagne of
China, grown in his district, of the quality of which he seemed
very proud. Whenever he showed the bottom of his cup, guests were
expected to empty and replenish theirs. I did the best I could,
both as to tasting the compounds and drinking the wine, but I fear
I was voted not a great success in either. The natives were quite
hilarious, and smoked at intervals during the feast. They played
the ancient game of digits like Romans, and also a Japanese game
with the hands and arms, the loser in every case being compelled
to drain his cup. When tea was served, the Mandarin, through his
interpreter, addressed General Bailey, as the principal dignitary
present, thanking him for the great honor conferred upon his
humble self by those present having condescended to sit at his
table. The general's reply was equally polite and very happy, and
appeared to please our host greatly, who then hoped that the
illustrious travellers from America would be pleased with China
and return safely to their great country from their journey round
the world, adding that, having now got the telegraph, America and
China and all countries were brought nearer to one another, and
would know each other better. I replied that this was happily
true, and ventured to express the belief that as we knew each
other better we should also like each other more, and that as we,
and all modern nations, had learned so much from his country in
the past, I hoped that in return we might be able, to some extent
at least, to repay that debt by perhaps, showing China some things
which she could adopt with advantage. To this sentiment there was
a most cordial response.

Before rising from table the photograph of the host was presented
to each guest. I requested that his autograph be put upon ours,
that we could insert it in our albums among the eminent men we
met. He replied that he must then go at the very end, because he
had not on his Mandarin hat. But I asked the interpreter to assure
him that we in America did not care about the hat; "it was the
head that was in it" which had raised him so high. This appeared
to please the company inordinately, and we got the autograph, and
so ended our first, and, in all probability, our last, Mandarin
dinner. Vandy ate and drank of everything offered him, and this
morning, when I fully expected him to be as sick as a dog, and
with a head like to split, he surprised me by reporting himself as
all right, and telling me that in some respects Mandarin cooking
beats the world. I should mention that the politeness of our host
was overpowering. The first course he served himself to each
guest, his servants following him round the table and handing him
the dishes ("and I myself shall be your servant, sir, says good
Uncle Toby"), and upon entering, as well as upon retiring, he
stood in the open court outside of his threshold to welcome and to
bid farewell. The shaking of one's own hands instead of grasping
those of your friends is soon learned; but what a world of
pleasure the Chinaman misses by his mode!

Of course we saw none of the ladies of the household, nor were
they inquired for or referred to by any of us. If a Chinese
gentleman were asked how many children he had, he would probably
not count the girls at all, but at all events he would distinguish
thus: two children and a _girl_. When a boy is born the
father is overwhelmed with congratulations, presents are sent, and
rejoicing takes place. If the little stranger happen to be a girl,
the event is hushed up. No reference is ever made to the great
misfortune which has befallen the expectant father. Friends are
apprised of the result by advertisements carried through the
streets. Yellow strips of paper are used if the child is a boy;
_any other color_ means a girl. Among the poorer classes girl
babies are frequently drowned. Some estimate that in the Shanghai
district one-third are so destroyed; the excuse given by the
parents is that they cannot afford to rear a girl. Men monopolize
most of the occupations here, and a woman can earn little or
nothing; besides, a husband for every girl must be provided upon
some terms. After a certain age an unmarried woman is regarded as
disreputable, entailing something of disgrace upon her family; and
so China lacks that most useful, and, as far as my experience
goes, most unjustly maligned class--old maids.

A universal sameness prevails in China which soon becomes
monotonous. One street looks precisely like another. If a traveller
were set down in any city of China, he would be at a loss to tell
where he was. It might be Shanghai, Canton, or Peking. There are the
same rows of one-story, or, at most, one-and-a-half-story huts,
without the slightest attempt at ornament or variety. There are no
grand mansions scattered throughout the land, no city halls,
colleges or commercial exchanges, as with us, but one dead flat
level of low structures wherever you go. Probably the exactions to
which wealth is subject here has much to do with this; all are
concerned to hide their resources, but I am told the Chinese
educated mind has really reached the stage in which ostentatious
display is regarded with contempt. It seeks escape from ceremony and
show, in sweet simplicity of living, as most truly great men have
done and are doing more and more.

Life "_en grand seigneur_" has never been the foible of the
rich American, but as the seigneur is a species of recent growth
and has not yet had time to blossom into flower and show us just
to what his nature turns, we must watch his movements hereafter
with interest. So far, he seems endued with quiet tastes, as far
as personal parade is concerned. A few have built grand mansions,
but still live plainly in the matter of retinue and ceremonial.

Even in England one notes nowadays a general expression of
disappointment at the result of living up to one's rank, according
to the old standard. It is not altogether from lack of means to
maintain great style, although this is the real reason with the
majority, perhaps, who have abandoned former habits. Another cause
is operating, even with such as are wealthy: the squire or his
lordship is not the all in all of his district any more; and he is
educated now, in many cases, to enjoy intellectual pleasures,
which he finds incompatible with so much society and numerous
establishments with their endless staffs of servants to maintain.
Many of the stately homes of England, therefore, are for rent, and
their owners live more within themselves and in simpler manner
than before.

       *       *       *       *       *

SHANGHAI, Saturday, December 14.

We leave for Hong Kong, eight hundred miles south, by the mail
steamer which sails at daylight. Our usual good fortune attends
us. The monsoon blew us to port one night sooner than we expected.
A night saved was quite an object, as the Geelong is a small
craft, and her rocking means something. Vandy was very ill, but I
managed to report regularly at table as usual. We slept on shore
Tuesday night, and the morning revealed one of the prettiest
places we have ever seen in the East. Hong Kong is an island about
twenty, six miles in circumference, situated one mile from the
mainland of China, and just at the mouth of the river leading to
Canton. There is scarcely an acre of level ground upon it except
one little spot which does duty as a race-course, and is not level
either by any means. A narrow strip fronting the water is occupied
by the city of Victoria, which extends about three miles, but back
of this the ground rises rapidly, and houses cluster upon the
steep sides of the mountain. Nevertheless, public gardens have
been laid out with exquisite taste and skill upon the hillside,
and excellent walks reach to the very top of the peak, more than
eighteen hundred feet high. So closely does this crag overhang the
town below that a stone could be dropped into the settlement from
its crest.

It is the thing in Hong Kong to do the Peak, and we did it, but
not in a manner very creditable to our staying powers, I fear. The
fact is, we had been tossed for sortie days upon a small ship. It
was exceedingly warm. I We were very tired (conscience suggested
another word for tired); in short, there were a dozen
reasons--good, bad, and indifferent--why two strong, lusty fellows
should, under the circumstances, be carried up instead of
attacking the Peak on foot; and so each of us, in a sedan chair,
borne by four strong coolies, managed to get to the top and enjoy
the splendid view, coming down in the same novel manner. It was
surprising, after we had returned, to find how decided a
misunderstanding had arisen between us on the subject. I had not
pressed walking up on Vandy's account, while he had only denied
himself that wished-for pleasure in deference to my supposed
inability. You see, had this point been made clearer before we
started, we might have had the walk after all. As it is, the
credit of both is fairly maintained, and I do think that neither
of us regrets the unfortunate misunderstanding; one gets so lazy
in these latitudes!

More than a hundred thousand Chinese have come from the main land
to reside in Hong Kong and enjoy the benefits of British rule, and
the population, which in 1841 was only five thousand, is now a
hundred and forty thousand. So the good work of reforming China
goes forward by the surest of all means, good example. It is at
such points as Hong Kong--one of the keys of the world--that
England does her real work and lifts up mankind.

       *       *       *       *       *

THURSDAY, December 19.

We took the steamer for the Paris of the East, far-famed Canton,
distant ninety-five miles. The steamer is just an American river
boat, and we enjoyed the trip very highly. And here let me note
two strange customs which prevail in China. First, your passage
money generally embraces all the liquor, beer, or wine you choose
to consume on the trip. Such was the case to-day, and passengers
were free to call for anything they wished to drink at any time
(champagne excepted). The other custom is universal. There is no
coin in circulation but silver, and it is so heavy that Europeans
have adopted the habit of carrying none, giving for any debt
incurred I. O. U.'s, called "chits," which are sent in at the end
of each month for payment; a vicious custom, which leads to
deplorable excesses, especially in drinking and in gambling. Men
drink and gamble more freely when immediate payment is not
required, or when the chances of a lucky turn may recoup their
losses; besides, many who have no means to pay incur debts.
Indeed, so many cases of this kind have happened since "hard times
set in" that I am encouraged to hope the end of "chits"
approaches. The rule at the clubs now is that no chits can be
given beyond a trifling amount each month, and that they must be
promptly redeemed. Canton was reached by four in the afternoon,
and such a swarm of small boats as surrounded us was never seen
elsewhere. When we were a full mile from the wharf I saw the mass
begin to stir, and such a stir! and almost all rowed by women,
yelling and striving, and dashing one boat against another, in
their efforts to be first. One of the most active scrambled up the
guards and reached us on the upper deck almost before the boat had
stopped, and secured us as her spoil. How she and a young girl
handled our trunks, carrying them over intervening boats and then
coming back for us, giving us her hand to convey us to her craft!
No mistaking her business capacity, nor her ability to cope with
the strongest and most active man and capture two passengers to
his one. John is no match for a Canton boatwoman on water,
whatever he may be on land.

       *       *       *       *       *

CANTON, Friday, December 20.

We have just returned from our first stroll through the narrow,
crowded alleys of Canton. Pictures and descriptions had prepared us
for what we were to see, but, as is usual in the East, we knew
nothing until we had seen for ourselves. In most cases the more one
reads or hears about a certain locality the more confused he is when
he visits it. He was a traveller who first said, "The eye and the
ear are close together, but what a distance between hearing and
seeing!" This recurs to me constantly. But to revert to Canton. We
decided to walk instead of following the custom of Europeans, who
generally take sedan chairs and dash through, seeing nothing in
detail. We cross the river by one of the innumerable boats rowed by
women, and are in the city. For five hours we are guided through
streets varying from six to ten feet in width through one continuous
mass of Chinamen. As for Chinawomen, they are rarely or never seen.
A few men are in silks; numbers of coolies, with loads, are almost
naked, but more, of a slightly higher order, are in rags; for the
Chinese, unlike their scrupulously clean brethren of Japan, appear
to pile on one tattered, greasy cloth rag over another until they
are a bundle of filth, against which you fear at every step lest you
may be pushed. The shops or booths on each side of the narrow
streets are resplendent just now, preparatory to the New-Year
celebrations, and those which make temple decorations a specialty
are brilliant in the extreme. As every shop, house or boat contains
an altar, which, as well as those in the public temples, must be
freshly decorated at the beginning of every year, the extent of this
trade is surprising, and all that tinsel can do with the most
gorgeous coloring imaginable is seen in this branch to perfection.
One thing appears very strange: even in the principal streets
various manufactures are carried on, the workmen being so close that
you can touch them from the pavement with your cane. We saw to-day
glass-making in a space not more than fifteen feet square, iron-
forging and shaping, cloth-weaving, the making of coffins (such
massive affairs these are, too, in China!), of Joss-sticks and
Joss-money, firecrackers, and many other articles. The front part of
the building is usually occupied by the shop for the sale of the
product, the ornamental shrine serving as a kind of screen to shut
off the manufacturing department; but by stepping behind you see
crowds of almost nude workmen, hard at work, making by hand with the
aid of the rudest appliances almost every article known. The wages
of a tradesman--a carpenter, for instance--is fifteen cents per day;
in addition the master has to give him three times per day his rice,
etc., estimated to cost six to eight cents more. The workmen are fed
by the employer, and allowed to sleep in and about the premises
somewhere or somehow. We saw freely exposed for sale dogs, rats, and
mice, all nicely dressed and hanging upon spits to tempt the hungry
passers-by, while above a large pot from which the steam was issuing
was a card, which, being translated by our guide, read, "A big black
cat within; ready soon." The dogs which are eaten are fed especially
for the purpose, and are hung up in state with labels setting forth
their superior merits. As far as I should have known, they might
have passed for delicious young roasting pigs, delicate enough in
flavor to have satisfied gentle Elia himself.

Our guide, in answer to numerous questions upon the subject,
informed us that some of his countrymen had acquired a taste for
dogs, while others had succumbed to the sweeter attractions of
cats; others again found rats their favorite morsel, but in all
cases these penchants are indulged in on the sly. Upon no account
would a Chinaman think of taking either of these peculiar
delicacies home, for it appears that mesdames, much to their
credit, have serious objections to their use. They draw the line
here, and the husband must confine the indulgence of his uncanny
longings to restaurants, and say nothing about it, or his lady
friends might mark him as one of whom "'twas said he ate strange
flesh." Contrary to the statement of travellers, I find this food
is not confined to the poorer classes. The price of it is about
the same as that of pork, and far beyond that of hare or deer. How
strange these people are! The price of a black dog or cat is fully
double that of a white one, the superstition being that the former
makes blood much faster than the other, while rats are supposed to
make the hair grow.

We returned to our hotel in time for luncheon, and in the afternoon
called upon Captain Lincoln, the United States Consul, to whom
General Bailey had given us letters which secured us a cordial
reception. The European settlement at Canton is very pretty, with
its broad, well-shaded avenues, exquisite flower-garden, and
lawn-tennis and croquet grounds. Its club-house is a gem, comprising
a small theatre, billiard-room and bowling- alley--everything
complete. The colonel took us for a stroll about the settlement, and
pressed us to join a party he was just about taking over the river
to visit the best flower-gardens of the city. We could not decline
such a treat, and this gave us the pleasure of meeting Mrs. Lincoln,
who is so well known in China as to be regarded somewhat in the
light of an historical character. Her collection of teapots promises
to render her famous. She boasts already of more than two hundred,
no two alike in form, and the record grows day by day; and the
melancholy feature is that there is no end for the passion save in
death, a mania for "a bit of the blue" ranking first in the list of
diseases for which materia medico, boasts no antidote.

Almost everything seems to have been tried in China during its
thousands of years of national life. We read for instance that in
A.D. 841 the emperor, seeing the evils of monasteries and
nunneries, suddenly closed them all and sent the inmates back to
their families. So far, perhaps, so good; but he also shut up all
the temples and told the priests to turn their faces in the
direction from which they came. He was far too "thorough," and
when the next emperor was so favored by heaven as to become the
discoverer of a veritable bone of Buddha and brought it to the
capital with many solemn ceremonies, the people were quite ready
for the inevitable reaction, and Buddhism was again restored. This
is a comparatively modern instance. Away back two hundred and more
years B.C., we find the famous builder of the Great Wall
attempting an impossible task with no better result. He was a
great reformer--indeed the first universal emperor of all existing
China, which was consolidated by his genius. The privileged
classes, of course, opposed his reforms and gave him much trouble
by holding up to the admiration of the people the feudal times of
the past, and extolling the heroes of those days to the
disadvantage of those of the present. At last the emperor resolved
to break with the past altogether, and ordered that all books
should be burned except such as referred to his own reign, that
all who even spoke of other books should be put to death; that
those who spoke of the past as superior to the present should be
put to death, and their relatives as well. Soon after this order,
more than four hundred who had disobeyed it were ordered to be
executed. Even the books of Confucius were not exempt; indeed
these were chief offenders, for the sage was remarkable for such
worship of the past as has scarcely a precedent in history.

Of course such an order could not be carried out. The condemned
books were secreted and all the more venerated from the dangers
which surrounded their possession. To-day we are thankful that so
many books exist telling truthfully of the past--those good old
times which were very bad times indeed. The history of the past
should be studied carefully that we may learn not what to copy,
but what to avoid. Let all the records be preserved.

I take it that to many blessings for which we have to thank the
Heathen Chinee may be added our axiom: "Resistance to tyrants is
obedience to God." The Emperor of China is in theory the most
absolute of rulers, and holds in his hands the power of life and
death--"whom he wills he slays, and whom he wills he keeps alive."
So runs the edict. It is the duty of the subject to render
implicit obedience. But here follows another duty no less
imperative: He is bound to resist the emperor's authority if he
"ceases to be a minister of God for the good of his people."
Confucius distinctly teaches "the sacred right of rebellion," and
the next highest authority, Mencius, puts it in even stronger
terms. This seems a striking anomaly, for the whole theory of
government to-day, as thousands of years ago, is the patriarchal
one: as the emperor is the Son of Heaven, so his people are the
sons of the emperor, and he alone can intercede between his
children and heaven. It is his prayers and sacrifices to which
supreme importance is attached. Notwithstanding all this, as we
have seen, the Chinaman believes it to be his duty to dethrone a
bad emperor and even to put him to death. You see, my friends, a
Chinese emperor can do wrong, which follows from his having power
direct from heaven to do anything; therefore the right to
decapitate him upon occasion must be reserved to the people. It is
only in England that the doctrine that the king can do no wrong
can safely be accepted. It is quite true there, for these
Islanders have so managed matters as not to allow that ornamental
appendage to do anything beyond opening fancy bazaars or laying
foundation stones, where even an hereditary monarch cannot go very
far astray.

On the 8th day of the 12th month, in the reign of Man-Ti, A.D.
593, occurred one of the most remarkable events in the history of
our race. An edict was issued that the various texts then in
circulation should be collected and engraved on wood, to be
printed and published. Here began the art of printing, but it was
not till a blacksmith named Pe-Ching, three or four hundred years
later, invented movable types that the astounding possibilities of
the invention were seen. Off hats to the memory of that learned
blacksmith! Tall oaks from little acorns grow; but surely never
before nor since has the world seen such stupendous results from
so small a change as that of substituting little pieces of wood,
each with one character upon it, for larger pieces which contained
many. That blacksmith has revolutionized the world. I shall never
pass one of the craft again without honoring him as distantly
related to Pe-Ching by virtue of his calling. Vulcan has done much
in the past in his smithy, forging the thunderbolts of war, but
put all such weapons together and I will back the movable types of
Pe-Ching for victory.

China carries the principle of home rule to a greater extent even
than the United States do, for each province not only manages its
own local affairs and levies its own taxes, but also supports its
only army and navy. This would seem fatal to the organization of
solid, vital forces; but as the Chinese have passed farther beyond
the barbarous thirst for so-called "glory" (disgrace, rather) than
western nations, it is not essential that either army or navy
should be efficient. Indeed, the less so the better.

I trust, however, the Chinese cannot rob the Republic of the
credit of having the poorest navy and smallest army among the
nations, for this I consider perhaps the foremost evidence that
America gives to the world that she is worthy to lead our race to
nobler issues than those which have so largely occupied it in the
past.

       *       *       *       *       *

SATURDAY, December 21.

To-day has been devoted, like yesterday, to Canton sights; but as
we had several distant places to visit, we took sedan chairs, and
went shouting along, four coolies each, Indian file, through the
town, forming quite a cavalcade, with our guide in front. It was
the same interminable maze of narrow, crowded thorough-fares,
crammed with human beings, that we had seen for the first time
yesterday. A great commotion was seen ahead at one place, out of
which emerged several men in crimson robes, bearing banners,
clearing the way and shouting out the name and dignities of a
mandarin who was approaching. An ornamented chair, borne aloft,
came into view, on which his lordship, an official of the third or
fourth button, sat in state, followed by two servants on ponies,
the only species of horseflesh we have seen in Canton. It is with
considerable difficulty that even these small animals get through,
and their use is confined to escorting high officials.

At almost every corner we pass crowds of poor wretches gambling in
various modes, from fantan down to dice and dominoes. Children
participate, and stake their "cash" with the elders; indeed, a
young Celestial rarely spends his stray coppers in candy without
tossing with the stall-keeper, double or quits; the little scamps
begin early, and at every counter we noticed the dice lying ready
to facilitate the operation. Is it any wonder that the vice of
gambling seems inherent in the Chinese character? We saw rather a
funny illustration of this practice, at which we couldn't help
laughing. A class of venders keep a large pot boiling on the
pavement in some partially secluded place, in which is an
assortment of odds and ends. Such a mess of tidbits--pieces of
liver, chicken, kidneys, beef, almost every conceivable thing!
These the owner stirs up, taking care, I thought, to bring the
largest bits adroitly to the surface. You should see the longing
faces of the hungry beggars around. One risks a cash (one-tenth of
a cent), a rattle of the dice--the customer has won. The fork is
handed to him, and he has two dabs in the pot. What a prize! Down
go the _bonnes bouches_ one after the other, and back goes
the fork to the pot-boiler, who again uses it to stir up in the
pot prizes to tempt the lucky owner of funds sufficient for the
indulgence of this piece of extravagance. I really believe the
poor, miserable, hungry wretches lounging around the pot derived
satisfaction from the odor emitted. And as the lucky gamester
gobbled his prizes, I imagined every one around involuntarily went
through the motion of smacking his lips, as if he shared in the
inward satisfaction of his lucky neighbor. Vandy almost
overwhelmed one of these people by handing him a cash to try his
fortune; but he thinks his man was too hungry to risk the dice,
and took the sure thing. He probably considered one bite in the
mouth worth two in the pot; but he wasn't a representative
Chinaman by any means.

At one point our guide in advance called a halt, and upon our
dismounting he led us into a walled enclosure, and startled us
with the information that we were in the execution grounds. He
pointed out spots still damp with the blood of criminals, several
jars containing the heads of victims, the protruding hair matted
with the lime used to decompose the flesh more rapidly, and a rude
cross still remaining upon which a woman had recently been
crucified and cut to pieces while alive. Her crime was the gravest
known to Chinese law: she had murdered her husband. Poor wretch!
probably he had not illy deserved his fate were the whole story
known, for the provocation which would nerve a woman in China to
rise against her husband and owner must be beyond human endurance.
Instead of this spot being set apart and shunned by man, woman and
child, as defiled by the horrors enacted within its walls, the
area was filled with large clay jars, used as stoves, the product
of a manufactory adjoining, set out there in rows to dry. Men
moved in and around them unconcernedly, and at the entrance and
within the enclosure there was a temporary fantan gambling shop,
composed of bamboo poles and mats, in full operation, surrounded
by crowds of people. Of a surety the Heathen Chinee is peculiar.
The grounds are of course cleared of everything upon "execution
days," and I suppose the swarming masses of Canton see no reason
why even this acre of notorious ground should be permitted to lie
useless several days in succession. There is nothing which is not
put to use in China.

Our next visit was more to our taste; it was to the place of the
literary examinations, which are held every third year. Here the
grounds are kept in good order, and exclusively devoted to this
noble use. It is well known that each province in China has public
examinations for its students. Those who are successful become
eligible for the higher examinations, which are held at Canton and
at two or three of the other great cities. Candidates who pass at
these are permitted to enter for the final struggle at Peking,
where success brings rank, honor, and fortune. At Canton the ten
acres of grounds are covered with long rows of brick sheds,
divided into stalls about six by four feet, with neither door nor
window, and open at the back; a narrow footway permits entrance,
and a blank wall forms the front of the succeeding row, and so on.
The stalls contain no furniture, but a board extending from the
front, half the length of the stall, and working backward and
forward in grooves in the wall, is used as a seat; a smaller one
higher up at the foot of the stall makes a writing-table, and
these combined made a bed. A small lamp is furnished, and the
aspirant remains for three days and nights writing upon subjects
given to him after he has entered the stall. No chance for
cramming here. Out of ten thousand six hundred who competed last
year, only eighty-two were found worthy to appear at Peking. I
believe only a certain number can succeed throughout the whole
Empire, and the standard is, therefore, kept very high.

Amid much which causes one to mourn for the backwardness of this
country, here is the bright jewel in her crown. China is, as far
as I know, the only nation which has advanced beyond the so-called
heroic age when the soldier claims precedence. England and America
must be content to claim that

  "Peace hath her victories
   No less renowned than war,"

while here the triumphs of peace are held in chief esteem. No
general, no conqueror, be his victories what they may, can ever in
China attain the highest rank. That is held only by successful
scholars who have shown the possession of literary talent. When
the news reaches a town or village that a townsman has been
victorious at Peking, a general rejoicing takes place, and
triumphal arches are built in his honor to witness for centuries
how deeply they appreciate the honor conferred upon the town by
their illustrious fellow-citizen. Upon his return the whole
population turns out to meet and welcome him, and his career
inspires other young men to emulate his virtues. Henceforth his
life is one of honor, for from this class the rulers of China are
taken. These are the Mandarins, and there is no other aristocracy
in China. Nor are his honors hereditary. His sons, if they would
be ennobled, must outstrip their fellows in knowledge, as their
father did before them. An aristocracy founded upon learning, and
composed of those who know the most, is an institution with which
we have no serious quarrel. It is claims from birth which make my
blood boil. These are an insult to every commoner, and we must not
rest until every trace of hereditary privilege is swept from the
earth. Neither king, queen, prince, nor lord should live in our
native isle to insult us if I had my way--and my way may come ere
I depart if I get the three score and ten allotted to mortals by
the psalmist.

Our trip to-day had another surprise for us. We were taken to the
city court and prison. A poor naked wretch was on his knees as we
entered, his back a mass of blood caused by the blows just
inflicted with the bamboo which an officer, standing close behind,
still held over the victim, ready to use again at a word from the
judge. What a quivering, miserable spectacle the culprit was! As I
write this I can see him tremble. His reputed crime was stealing,
but he had denied it, and the judge, not getting satisfactory
answers to his questions, had ordered the bamboo to be applied.
Another poor soul sat under torture, laced by ropes against a
large flat board in some diabolical manner so that his features
were distorted by pain, while at a short distance from the door
many hardened-looking criminals, all chained to large balls of
iron, awaited trial and sentence. The most enlightened of the
judges here still urge that it would be impossible to administer
justice without torture or physical punishment in order to force
replies from the accused. If you can compel a culprit to answer
every question which a trained examiner is allowed to put, it is
not difficult to convict the guilty. With us we forego that
advantage by requiring no man to convict himself. Here he has to
prove his innocence in a measure; at least he must tell a straight
story; and this he would never do, it is said, in China, unless he
were held in fear of bodily chastisement or torture. It is an
effectual mode of getting answers, as I can testify. The judge
asks a question which goes to the very root of the matter. The
wretch hesitates an instant. I thought I could see from his
supplicating gesture that he felt the true answer would expose his
guilt. "Bamboo, attend--ready!" Another instant, and the blow
descends, the trembling man stammers out his reply, and his
sentence is pronounced. Another, who has been cleverly allowed to
witness the manner in which recusant parties are dealt with, is
dragged before the judge, his back bared, and he falls on his
knees to make answer. No skilful lawyers here to defend and throw
around the prisoner the safeguards of the law; but neither is
there any upon the side of the prosecution. The accused has only
to satisfy the judge by giving a true account of himself and his
doings. I should say an innocent man would prefer this mode, a
guilty one detest it; and this seems a strong argument in its
favor.

My room fronts on the river, and is upon the second story of this
strange little hotel. This gives me fine views of the unceasing
traffic of the stream, but it is not without its disadvantages as
a place of rest at night. The Chinese gods, or devils rather, have
a strong fondness for fire-crackers, and these are set off at all
hours of the night by the more devout of the boat-women right
under my windows. I waken with a start every now and then, as an
unusally large bunch is fired. It occurred to me last night that
some of the extra fees bestowed upon our woman and her bright
little sister may be responsible for part of this species of
devotion. It is very likely that some part of their extra earnings
is considered due to their gods. I write this at nine in the
morning, and there are two boats busily engaged in their prayers
just now, one battery of crackers responding to the other. One
would almost think a naval war upon a small scale was raging. I
must plead ignorance till now of this strange manner of
propitiating the supernatural powers. If I ever read of it, it has
passed away and been forgotten, like a thousand things one reads
of. Another custom which interferes with slumber is the noise made
by the night watchman, who walks backward and forward beating a
tenor gong with a hard stick. One, two, three, slowly, followed by
two quick taps, is the signal that all is well. Extraordinary
precautions have to be taken in the cities against theft. Almost
every block has its watchman, and gates short distances apart are
shut at nine o'clock, after which only those known personally to
him are allowed to pass. One provision struck me as putting an
effectual check upon mischief of all kinds: no one is allowed to
walk after night without carrying a lantern, and one found
disregarding this law would be held "suspect." Our landlord told
me that the watchman would be sternly dealt with if a robbery
occurred, as he is held responsible for the safety of his block.

The boat population of Canton is famous as being something unique,
but it exceeds all ideas I had formed of it. It is said that three
hundred thousand people live in boats ranging from the size of a
skiff to that of a yawl. I have seen a family of six huddled
together in one of the former size, but these were the poorest of
the poor. The usual passenger boat is twenty feet long by four and
a half wide--the size of the hotel boats we use. We got into one
this morning, and as the crackers were going off from numerous
boats on all sides, our woman explained that the unusually
vigorous fusilade was owing to this being "Joss day." "All people
go Jossee Temple this day." "Do you go?" "No; have got Jossee here
on boatee." "Where? Show us." With that one of the girls at the
stern pushed aside two small sliding-doors in the extreme end of
the boat, and revealed a little shrine with a lamp ever burning,
and Joss sticks in the incense bowl. The entire family burst into
laughter at our surprise, evidently tickled with the idea that it
was a decidedly cute thing to have their Joss cooped up "Jack-in-
the-box" style. Yesterday the Emperor, at Peking, after fasting
all the previous day, would ascend into the Temple of Heaven,
accompanied by two thousand of his highest officials, and worship,
while his subjects celebrate the event by this fire-cracker
carnival.

I was curious to see how a small yawl could be the residence of a
family, and examined several of them. The centre of the extreme
stern is occupied by the Joss temple, on either side of which
small dishes, cans, etc., are arranged; then comes an open space
extending across the boat, about four feet long, over which is
thrown a light board about six inches wide, upon which stands the
woman who sculls and steers the craft. A permanent bamboo roof is
built over about the next six feet of the boat, and around the
walls are hung a few ornaments, generally old-fashioned plates and
cheap prints from the English illustrated papers, while on a shelf
are those indispensable articles, the smoking pipes of the
family--large and curious affairs, with richly ornamented square
brass bowls about four and one-half by two inches in size. A tiny
china tea-set and various little "curios" are found in the best
boats. The next portion, where passengers sit, has nicely
cushioned seats running across the boat, and on each side as well,
and is also covered by the roof. Next to the bow is a platform
three feet deep, upon which stands the second woman, who rows or
poles the boat, as may be necessary. Under her feet is the
kitchen, and she has only to lift a board to show a small square
covered with clay, upon which a fire can be built. Pots and pans
are seen snugly stowed away around this, so that, by means of
movable platforms, trap-doors, etc., the entire boat is rendered
available to its very keel. At night, when the business of
carrying passengers is over, all the boards are made into a fine
flush deck, which is divided, in a very few minutes, into sleeping
apartments by means of bamboo poles and mats; and so it comes to
pass that what I was before disposed to believe almost impossible
is accomplished with a degree of comfort quite surprising. These
boat people live for less than ten cents a day. Rent there is
none; food costs about five cents per day for each person;
clothing does not cost two. From the child of eight to the great-
grandmother, all do something. When not otherwise engaged, they
sew, make Joss-sticks, slit bamboo, or do something or other, the
baby being strapped on the mother's back that her capacity for
work may not be interfered with; and her stepping backward and
forward as she sculls must be a soothing lullaby, for we haven't
heard a child crying yet in China. Upon such boats as I have here
attempted to describe, and many far smaller and destitute of
ornament, millions of the people of China live, move, and have
their being. Children-are born, old men die, upon them, and many
thousands of their occupants have never slept a night upon shore.

I was surprised to hear that there is no theatre at Canton. The
government had some time ago to prohibit night performances, as
they were constantly the scenes of disorder. The only amusement is
furnished upon large gayly decorated boats, where feasts are
given, at which girls belonging to the boats appear and sing. We
saw one of these, but it was a poor performance compared with our
experience in Japan.

       *       *       *       *       *

SUNDAY, December 22.

We allowed our guide to leave us for to-day, and strolled about
alone. In the early part of our walk we heard music--a harmonium
and a well-known old hymn tune--and on entering a building found
Rev. Dr. Hopper preaching in Chinese. We had entered at the wrong
door, and were among the women, who are separated from the men by
a high, solid wall; but Mrs. Hopper rose and conducted us to the
other side, and after service the Doctor came and greeted us
cordially. We spent an hour in their house, and were surprised to
hear that both were old Pittsburghers. There were at church that
morning about thirty Chinamen, all of the poorer classes,
principally servants and dependents of Europeans. In the afternoon
we stumbled upon the large Catholic cathedral, which is now almost
ready for use. It is a magnificent granite structure, three
hundred feet long and eighty-eight feet wide. If anything can
impress the Chinese mind it must be grand mass in such a temple,
with its vaulted roof, stained windows, the swelling organ, and
all the "pride, pomp, and circumstance" of Catholic worship. As we
stood admiring, the saintly bishop approached and greeted us with
exquisite grace. He could not speak English, but. his French was
the easiest to understand of any I ever listened to, and my little
knowledge of the language enabled us to carry on an interesting
conversation. When I told him I had been in St. Peter's at Rome,
and had seen the Pope when the assembled thousands fell prostrate
before him as he advanced up the aisle, carried upon his
palanquin, he seemed much affected, and pressed us to visit his
quarters, apologizing, as he showed us into a poor one-story
building, for the poverty of his apartments, but adding that the
true _pretre Catholique_ must needs dwell in poverty among
the poor of the earth. I asked if he did not expect to return to
France to die; but, laying his hand upon his heart, he answered
that he must not allow himself to think of France, since it had
pleased God to place him here. For thirty years he had labored
among these people, and among them he must die; it was the will of
God. There were only a table and a few chairs in this bishop's
palace, not even a mat or carpet on the floor; but he ordered a
servant to bring wine, of which he only tasted, while we drank
"_sa sante_." He subsequently took us to the orphanage, where
we saw eighty boys being educated. About an equal number of little
girls are in a separate building. If the Chinese are ever to be
reformed, this is the way to do it--get control of the young, and
teach them. As for the older generation, I fear it is too late to
do much with it. There are in and around Canton about five
thousand Chinese Catholics, mostly recruited, I understand, from
among the young, taken by these sagacious workers into their
schools and orphanages and other institutions, and educated as
Christians from their youth up.

When I told the good Bishop we spent our summers at Cresson, very
near Loretto, and often drove to Count Gallitzin's tomb, he
grasped my hand and gave me his benediction. Oh, blessed man! a
grand Catholic, Father Gallitzin!

Every one has heard of the great wall of China, which stretches
across the northern frontier from the sea to the westernmost
province, a distance of twelve to fifteen hundred miles. It is
fifteen to thirty feet high, with brick towers about forty feet
high at intervals along the whole route. This gigantic work was
begun in the third century before Christ by one of the greatest
rulers of men the world has ever seen, the Emperor Che Hwang, who
hoped that it would prove an insuperable barrier to the inroads of
the Tartar hordes. But a still greater warrior than he; Genghis
Khan, leader of the Mongols, showed in 1212 that it could be
overcome. To this day the Chinese dynasty is Tartar, but the four
hundred millions of people remain the same, having assimilated the
foreign element. The Tartars are fast becoming Chinese, although a
difference between the races is still clearly discernible. The
Heathen Chinee changes not. The Jews and the Scotch are perhaps
the races in Europe who preserve their types with the greatest
tenacity, but compared with the Chinese they must be considered
plasticity itself. Apart from their overwhelming numbers, which,
being of one unvarying type throughout, constitute a mass upon
which it is almost impossible to make much impression, one sees
how climate and conditions of life in China operate to bring to
the Chinese type all foreign elements, and to retain them there.
Mrs. McC. has just been explaining to me to-day how much trouble
she has to keep her children, for instance, from becoming young
Celestials. They are of pure Scotch parentage upon both sides, yet
are constantly alarming their fond mother by developing tastes
wholly opposed to hers in food, dress, habits, manners, language,
everything. It is just the same in India: the child of foreign
parents there must be taken home for years before he is seven or
eight years old, or he becomes a Hindoo. We have just such
differences at home in a less degree. If two brothers leave Boston
with their families, one for New Orleans, another for Chicago, the
differences in their grandchildren will be very noticeable. The
dream of some dreamer, that Englishmen can be grown in Hindostan
or Australia, or even in America (or in Ireland, for that matter),
will be rudely dispelled by a few weeks' residence in China or
India. The opening gowan transplanted from its Scottish glen loses
its modest charm and grows rank upon the prairies of the West even
in its second year. The shamrock pines away in exile beyond the
borders of its own Emerald Isle. Man, the most delicately touched
of all to fine issues, is also the creature of his surroundings,
even to a greater degree.

       *       *       *       *       *

MONDAY, December 23.

Now for a frank confession. Like Mark Twain's preacher with the
car rhyme, "I have got it, got it bad"--the "curio" malady in one
of its most virulent types. Ever since we were dropped upon that
uncanny land of Japan the symptoms of forthcoming disorder have
not been wanting. I had to succumb occasionally, but rallied in
time to preserve a tolerably clean bill of health. But if I have
one weakness more than another, it is for the harmony of sweet
sounds, and this the tempter knew right well. I met my fate in the
famous Temple of Hoonan, in which is the most celebrated "gong" in
China. I struck it, and listened. For more than one full minute, I
believe, that bowl was a quivering mass of delicious sound. I
thought it would never cease to vibrate. In Japan I had counted
one that sounded fifty seconds, and its music rang in my ears for
days. I asked "Ah-Cum" why the temple would not sell this gong and
buy another far cheaper; for my opinion is, and my experience too,
that there is nothing in China that money will not buy. However,
this was an exception. Well, does the priest know where there are
any temple gongs that can be bought? Yes, three that belonged to a
temple destroyed by the rebels some years ago, and which were
still in the hands of curio dealers. The address was obtained, and
off we set to see them. I wish I could describe the places we
visited in our search, the collections of curios we saw! No
antiquary outside of Canton ever saw a tithe of the strange old
things we examined. One might stumble upon a magic mirror, or an
Aladdin's lamp, in some of these recesses, and scarcely wonder at
it; all is so strange. But to the gongs. There is a little bit of
history connected with one of them which is significant. We found
we had to get from one of the priests a certain ticket before the
article could be delivered. I thought a moment, and then:

  "Oh, my prophetic soul, _my uncle_!"

It was even so. The priest had seen "his uncle," the curio dealer,
and in some moment of want or dire temptation had pledged the gong
of the temple for an advance. I got those which had a fairer record,
and told our guide I wanted the other if he could get it; but this
was impossible. Judge of my surprise, however, when the identical
gong reached me at Hong Kong. I have it, with the pawn mark
fortunately only partially obliterated, but so that the name of the
guilty priest is no longer legible. Ah-Cum must have bargained for
that ticket, the rogue, knowing I would pay the price; but really,
had that gong reached me while in Canton, and had it been possible
for me to return it to the right temple, I should not have thought,
under the circumstances, of carrying it off. It seems as if I were
in some degree a receiver of stolen goods; but as it only came to me
after we had reached Hong Kong, and I knew neither priest nor
temple, what could I do but decide to hold it myself until claimed
by the rightful owners? Therefore, my friends, one and all of you,
please take notice: whatever you may take a fancy to among my
curios, don't ask me for that gong. I don't feel my title quite as
clear as I could wish it, but I shall ease my conscience by agreeing
with myself to act as temporary custodian--only that and nothing
more. There are others beside temples' gongs, and I have to confess
to several (genuine "sous chows," all of them). Indeed to-day was
the curio day throughout. I cannot give even a partial record of the
spoils as our procession marched hotelward in the evening. I burst
into loud laughter as I eyed our party. In the advance was Ah-Cum,
the guide, bearing aloft a fearful idol, "the ugliest I could find
in China," this being Sister Lucy's characteristic commission; Vandy
followed with his pockets stuffed with "birds'-nests,"
"Joss-sticks," "temple money," and etceteras too numerous to
mention; then came two coolies, one after the other, naked as Adam
after he donned the fig-leaf, carrying the gongs, while I brought up
the rear with fans, vials, ivory carvings, and what-not. I cannot
tell what part of this maze of shops we had been in, but the curio
shops were so far from our hotel that not a man about them knew
where it was, although there is but one European hotel in the city,
consequently the coolies had to follow us. Vandy has just reported
that it will take nine boxes to hold our spoils from here. I
exclaim, Vandy, for goodness' sake let us get out of this
immediately and try to regain our good, hard common sense, and be
sound, practical men once more. Give me a _Pittsburgh Commercial_
and let me see the price of pig metal, and what is said of steel
rails and coke and manufactured iron, and all the rest of it; and
that monthly report of the Lucy Furnaces and of the Edgar Thomson,
both the largest upon record. Thanks! Ah! now I feel better. How is
it with thee, my friend? Fortunately Vandy felt the necessity for
keeping an eye upon me, and he never was in such danger himself. But
if any one can pass through Canton and escape a touch of the
Toodleian malady, which prompts one to buy everything one sees, I
warrant him sound to the core.

       *       *       *       *       *

HONG KONG, Christmas Eve.

We returned this afternoon from Canton. After retiring I heard a
well-known sound--the ubiquitous mosquito. It was rather odd to be
compelled to rise and ring for our "boy" to put up mosquito-bars
on Christmas evening, but it had to be done. We talked till late
of home, and speculated upon what our friends would all be about
away up there almost above our heads--"topside," as John Chinaman
always expresses it. So far we have only one paper from home; no
letters, these having been missed at Shanghai. The news of the
triumph of hard money views rejoiced us greatly, as proving once
more that in grave emergencies the good sense of the people of
America can always be depended upon. One has only to visit the
East to see what evils the silver basis entails upon a nation.

The economy practised in China is striking. A sweet potato is sold
in halves, or even in quarters, if required; ferriage across the
river in a boat--a stream as wide as the Ohio at Pittsburgh--costs
one-fifth of a cent, and you can engage an entire boat for
yourself for a cent, if you wish to be extravagant; poultry is
sold by the piece, as we sell a sheep, the wings, breast, legs,
all having their price, and even the very feet of a chicken being
sold for soup. Common iron nails are laid out in lots of six each;
these have been used and used again, no one knows how often; we
see the people at work straightening old nails at every turn. You
can buy one-tenth of a cent's worth (1 cash) of either fish, soup,
or rice. Verily things are down to a fine point here!

In one of our strolls we came upon a string of ten blind beggars
wandering through the narrow, crowded street, the hands of each
upon the shoulders of the one in advance, the leader beating with
his cane upon the stone pavement, and all beseeching alms. It was
a strange sight. The Chinese Government gives to every blind
person a small monthly pittance, and well-dressed passers, I
observed, generally bestowed a cash upon the gang.

I have not said much about the temples of Canton or of China, as
they are poor affairs compared with those of Japan; besides, one
becomes sated with temples which are for the most part copies of
one another; the pagodas are much more picturesque at a distance
than when closely inspected. The Chinese actually prefer all their
places to smack of age, and repair them reluctantly, so that all
have a dilapidated air, which gives a very unfavorable impression
to a stranger. At best, China has nothing whatever to boast of in
the way of architecture. We did not see a structure of any kind
which would attract a moment's notice, a few pagodas and temples,
perhaps, excepted; but even these are poor and mean affairs.

The only temple worthy of mention I saw in any part of China is
that of the Sages. In it we were shown tolerably good busts of
five hundred of the most famous characters known to Chinese
history--all the writers, statesmen, and rulers who have
distinguished themselves for thousands of years. Among them,
curiously enough, Marco Polo has by some means found a place.
Compared with the hideous monsters worshipped in other temples, I
regarded this deification of the illustrious dead with sincere
satisfaction. No man can erect a house superior to what his rank
or station in life justifies. A public officer prescribes the
limit of expenditure, after investigating the affairs of the
intending builder, as every one in China tries to conceal his
wealth, fearing unjust exactions by the State. It is easy to see
why no palaces are forthcoming. This is not "liberty;" but I
suspect several of my friends who have erected palatial structures
of late years have seen reason to wish that such a safeguard had
existed when they began to build.

       *       *       *       *       *

CHRISTMAS DAY.

Yesterday's papers announced that the Hallelujah Chorus was to be
performed in the English Cathedral this morning at eight o'clock.
I had been so long out of the region of music that I rose early
and went to church. The Japanese and Chinese music grated so on my
ears, I longed to hear an organ once more. I enjoyed the service
very much. The music was well performed, and as for the sermon--I
had to be back for breakfast, you know. It was specially pleasing
to see at church the detachment of British soldiers, the more so
as they were Highlanders. My heart will warm to the tartan. One
strange feature I shall not soon forget. Several soldiers, in
their scarlet uniforms, sang in the choir. I scarcely ever see
soldiers without being saddened by the thought that the
civilization of the race is yet little better than a name when so
much must still be done to teach millions of men the surest way to
destroy their fellows; but I take hope from this omen--these
mighty men of war engaged this morning chanting the seraphic
strains which proclaim the coming of the better day when there
shall reign "on earth peace, good-will toward men."

Whatever old China may be doing, young China is progressing, for I
saw in the park this morning several youthful Celestials, with
their pigtails securely tied and out of the way, hard at cricket
and baseball. Nor were they "duffers" either, although our wee
Willie and his nine could no doubt, in the way of a "friendly"
inning or two, show the lads a sweet thing, especially in the
"underthrow," for which my little nephew, I hear, is famous.

We are all creatures of prejudice, of course, but I could not help
being somewhat shocked on Sunday, as I strolled about the
Cathedral, to see some thirty odd sedan chairs on the one side,
and I suppose as many on the other, each with two, three, and some
with four coolies in gorgeous liveries in attendance, all waiting
the closing of prayers, lying in the shade, and some of them
improving the opportunity to enjoy a quiet gamble with dice this
fine Sunday morning. It did not seem to me to be quite consistent
for some of my Scotch friends who stand so stoutly for Sabbath
observance to keep so many human beings on duty, say three for one
who worshipped, just to save them from walking a few short squares
to and from church, for the town is small and compact. But custom
has much to do with one's prejudices, for, after all, how is this
worse than to roll in one's carriage to our Fifth Avenue temples?
Yet this never struck me as so much out of the way before, and I
think, unless the future Mrs. C. seriously objects, we shall walk
to church as a rule--when we go. Really, three men kept at work
that one may pray seems just a shade out of proportion.

I astonished Vandy this morning by getting up early; but I did not
care to explain the reason for this phenomenon, which was that I
had to catch the Canton boat to send a note back to Ah-Cum asking
him to get me certain additional curios after all. While at Canton
I had manfully resisted the temptation, but the thought of leaving
China without the treasures proved overwhelming, and now my only
fear is lest Ah-Cum should fail me. I confessed to Vandy, after we
had had a glass of good wine at tiffin, and I shall not soon
forget his quiet smile. "You've got it bad, haven't you?" 'Twas
all he said, but you should have heard the touch of infinite pity
in his tone. Yes, I have got it bad, I know, but to-morrow we
shall escape from this old curiosity shop forever.

The fire-bell rang just after we retired, and from eleven o'clock
until now (two this afternoon--fifteen hours) a disastrous
conflagration has raged, often threatening to consume the entire
settlement; indeed, nothing could have saved it but the splendid
conduct of the 74th Highlanders. They were everywhere, and fought
the fire the whole night long. The singers of the morning were the
intrepid firemen of that tempestuous night. It was only by blowing
up row after row of buildings that the flames were confined to one
district. I saw the brave fellows march into the buildings upon
the edge of the swirling flames to lay the fuse. A moment after
their return the bugle would sound; then came the explosion, and
the men were off to another building to repeat the work. All was
done by bugle call, with military precision. Ten thousand times
more "glory" in this march to save than in all the charge at
Balaklava. Had equal pluck been shown on the field of battle, the
flag of that splendid regiment would have blazoned with another
war-cry. Let them place this record on their banners, instead of
the name of a city destroyed: December 25th, 1878. Hong Kong
_Saved!_ They have no prouder triumph to commemorate, even in
their glorious history.

I have not yet mentioned that slavery, in its mildest form, exists
in China; but the children of a slave are free, and custom, which
is all-powerful there, requires a master to give up his servant if
the latter can repay the amount originally paid for him; and those
who own a woman-servant are expected to provide a husband for her
when she becomes of age. The purchase of boys and girls is, as a
rule, confined to those who wish in this way to be provided with
servants who shall become part of the household and can be relied
upon. In no case can a master or mistress require a slave to
engage in any disreputable calling unless the purpose for which
the sale is made is clearly set forth, in which event the cost is
fully doubled. Without special provisions in the bill of sale, it
is understood that the servant is to perform a servant's ordinary
duties and to be fairly treated, and to be required to do no wrong
thing.

The firing of firecrackers caused me to speak to our boatman one
day, as I was annoyed by the noise, having always had a dislike
for sudden explosions. "Why don't you worship something good and
beautiful," I said; "some god that would detest such things as
firecrackers?" "So we do," said he, "in our hearts, but this is
not worship; it is sacrifice to the bad gods, so they will be
pleased and do one no harm." "But won't the good god be displeased
and do you harm?" "No, the good god would never harm any one." His
words were, as near as I can recollect them, "He no do badee; no
can; always likee he; much goodee; by-by kill bad Jossee may be;"
and so they go, good lord, good devil; no saying into whose hands
one may fall, as the sailor had it. I gave it up, as the business
woman came on board and took command, the husband going off to his
work elsewhere. This woman Susan--Black-eyed Susan, as we have
dubbed her--and her bright young sister-in-law continue to
interest us more and more, they are such active, intelligent
women. The girl is ornamented with bangles and heavy anklets, and
her earrings are of blue-bird feathers; her hair is banged, and
everything about her evinces the care of really good, respectable
people. I told Susan if I were a boatman I should try hard to save
money enough to buy her sister-in-law, and asked her price. "No
sellee you; sellee goodee Chinaman two hundred dollars." This was
said as a great boast, as the ordinary price for one in her
station is only ninety dollars. Our guide turned up his lip in
scorn and whispered to me, "She talkee with mouthee too muchee;
ninety dollar plenty." Perhaps he had his eye upon the maid for
his son. If so, I put in a good word for her, telling him I was
reputed one of the best judges of young ladies in America, that I
could tell their qualities at a glance, and that it was certain
she would make an excellent wife; and, what I thought would weigh
as much with him, I added that for a business woman who could
please travellers and get lots of money I did not believe she had
her equal in Canton. One always likes to help on a match when he
can, and something may come of this; who knows?

I wish to bear my testimony to the grand work which is going
forward at various places in China by means of the medical
departments of missions. There are fourteen hospitals of this kind
in the country, and patients from all parts flock to them. In
diseases of the eye unusual success seems to have been achieved,
and stories are told of mandarins almost blind who have been
restored to sight; and in dealing with cutaneous disorders, which
are very common, the doctors have also done wonders. A small
mission hospital established in the Island of Formosa only a few
years ago has already treated ten thousand patients, and I am
informed that the Canton establishment numbers its beneficiaries
by the hundred thousand. Whatever objection the people make to
missionaries, doctors are ever welcome, and regarded as
benefactors. Nor must we forget that the entire credit of this
indisputably grand work is wholly due to those who consider it a
sacred duty to endeavor to force their religious views upon the
consideration of the Chinese. One can hardly find terms strong
enough to speak fitly of the good missions are performing in this
department of their labors; and while upon this subject we should
remember that it is also to missionaries alone we owe almost all
we know of China and its literature. Even Confucius was given to
the world in English by a missionary. I take special pleasure in
saying all I justly can for those who are so universally decried
throughout the East. With scarcely an exception--indeed I do not
remember one--every European or American engaged in the East
speaks disparagingly of missionaries and their labors. I believe,
myself, that trying to force religious views upon those who only
tolerate them because the cannon stands behind ready to support
the preaching is not the better way, and that many more converts
would be made by "the word spoken in season" by ministers of the
European congregations now scattered throughout the East, and by
doctors and others with whom the natives are daily brought in
contact, if the paid propaganda were withdrawn; but this should
not prevent us from crediting the missionaries with the collateral
advantages which are now flowing from another branch of their
efforts. They are on the right track now; the M.D. is the best
pioneer of the D.D. There is another powerful lever at work in the
_Herald_, a weekly paper published in Shanghai and
distributed throughout the Empire. It is obtaining an immense
circulation. It gives each week an epitome of the most important
events occurring in every country, and America, I saw, headed the
list. A Mr. Allen, formerly connected with missions, is the
publisher, and he is probably doing more to revolutionize China
than all others combined.

China, as everybody knows, grows a great deal of tea, but few are
aware how great a proportion of this indispensable article she
produces, and how much of it she uses herself. Here are the
figures I see printed: Total production of the world, 1,300,000
net tons; China's portion, 1,150,000 tons, being about nine times
more than all the world beside. But what is more wonderful is that
China uses 1,000,000 tons per annum, and exports only 150,000
tons. But every one in China, upon all occasions, partakes of the
cup which cheers and does not inebriate. Neither sugar nor cream
is used in it; a little tea is placed in the cup and boiling water
poured over it and it is drunk immediately. The strength of the
tea is drawn in a few moments after the water is poured upon it.
The coloring matter leaves it later. It is therefore a great
mistake to use a teapot and allow tea to remain in it, and equally
to use either sugar or cream--at least such is the verdict of
those here who should know best. We quite agreed with them, and
recommend our readers to try the Chinese plan, always provided
they are so fortunate as to have a good sound article of pleasant
flavor. With most of the tea found in England, and especially so
with that generally used in America, the sugar and cream are no
doubt necessary to drown the "twang." A Chinaman would put this
practice on a par with putting sugar in Chateau Lafitte. Tea is
the wine of the Celestial. A mandarin will "talk" it to you as a
gourmet talks wine with us; dilate upon its quality and flavor,
for the grades are innumerable, and taste and sip and sip and
taste as your winebibber does--and smack his lips too. We are told
of teas so delicate in flavor that fifty miles of transportation
spoils them.

It is popularly supposed that a small-footed woman must be one of
rank, but this is an error. It is a matter of family ambition,
even among the poor, to have in the family at least one such
deformity. Gentlemen marry only small-footed women, and their
child might make a good match. If large-footed, this would be
impossible; but such hopes are sometimes doomed to disappointment,
or after marriage reverses may ensue; and so it happens that many
small feet stamp about in poverty and try to eke out a living
under disadvantages from which their less genteel neighbors are
free. The most remarkable feature in the streets is the total
absence of women of any class except such as drudge alongside of
men, and even these are not numerous, for man appears to
monopolize most of the work, at least in the cities. Occasionally
we pass a sedan chair, or one passes us, closely covered up, which
no doubt contains a lady of position compelled to visit some
temple or relative; but I do not recall seeing in China any woman
in a costume above that of the working classes, so jealously do
Chinamen sentence their ladies to seclusion. A curious
illustration of this occurred on our passage out. On our ship was
one of the leading Chinese merchants of San Francisco with his
wife. Rather than have her seen, even among the few cabin
passengers, he engaged a portion of the steerage, had it closely
boarded up and confined her in it, and she was never seen by any
of us during the entire voyage. He and she took their meals
together in the box. It was said that now and then at night she
was carried secretly on deck for a breath of air; of course with
her small feet she could not walk.

The steerage had to be fumigated at intervals and every soul was
ordered on deck before the process began. This necessity had
evidently not been taken into account by the exclusives, and much
difficulty did our good doctor encounter with them. The husband
declared that rather than be exposed to the gaze of the crowd, his
wife would run the risk of being fumigated to death. The operation
was postponed until a small cabin could be provided and the veiled
beauty taken secretly to it.

A Chinese woman in China would hold it disgraceful to expose her
face to a strange man. Queen Victoria, sober, sage matron and pink
of propriety as she is reputed, would not consider a lady properly
dressed for her levee--where the more strange men to gaze the
better--who did not expose her face and neck and shoulders to full
view. Education, my boy, education! all things right and all
things wrong within a very wide range of affairs. Chinese women
pinch the feet, ours pinch the waist, and each pities the other
for their woeful lack of knowledge and their wickedness in marring
God's image--and for their bad taste, which is, I fear, equally
heinous to the female mind.

Our visit to the Celestial Empire is now at an end. We sail at
noon by the French mail steamer Pie Ho for Singapore, fourteen
hundred miles south. The more we see of China the greater it
grows. A country much larger than the United States, with eight
times the population, and not one mile of telegraph or railroad in
it, in many districts not even one mile of public road broad
enough for anything wider than a wheelbarrow--and yet a reading
and writing people, a race of acknowledged mental power, with a
form of settled government the oldest in the world--how
inconsistent all this seems to us! But the reason for this
paradoxical condition of affairs is, I think, that the unequalled
resources of the country, which give to the people every necessary
of life and almost every luxury, encouraged them in early days to
eschew intercourse with the poorer lands around them, and then
their superiority as a race to all their neighbors led them quite
justifiably to conclude that all beyond were outside barbarians.
They rested content with the advanced position attained, and as
each successive generation copied the past, change became foreign
to their whole nature, and in this path they have stubbornly
persisted until the once inferior races of the West have far
outstripped them. Among these outside barbarians must be ranked
our noble selves, for it isn't one thousand years, let alone two,
since our ancestors were running about dressed in skins and eating
raw flesh--perhaps eating each other, as some allege--as ignorant
of their A B C's as of the theory of evolution or the nebular
hypothesis, when these Chinese were printing books and sailing
ships by the compass. If my English readers will not be too
greatly startled at the illustration, I will suggest that the
conduct of China and its results suggest a danger for them which
their statesmen should not be slow to perceive and remedy. England
once stood as much in advance of other Western nations as China
did in comparison with other lands, and she has apparently rested
till now with equal complacency in the belief of her superiority.
It is fast passing away. The English-speaking race throughout the
world no longer looks to the parent land for political guidance,
for instance, where Britain once reigned supreme. What English-
speaking community would now study her antiquated political
devices, her throne, her church and state, her primogeniture and
entail, her hereditary chamber, unequal representation, or lack of
representation rather, except that they might surely learn how to
avoid them! Over the day when all English-speaking people turned
instinctively to my native land for political example "Ichabod"
must be written. They now look elsewhere, follow other ideals, and
have adopted other ideas of government and the rights of man.

It is not too late yet, however, for England to regain her proper
place in the race if she will only wake up, rub her dear old eyes,
and see what the youngsters are about. "There is life in the old
dog yet." The world is not done with the glorious little island,
nor the island done with the world either. But no nation can
indulge in a very long sleep in these days of progress the world
over. England must remember,

         "_To have done_, is to hang
   Quite out of fashion, like a rusty mail
   In monumental mockery."

Recent events have undoubtedly awakened the foremost minds of
China to the fact that they have been asleep, not twenty years
only like our Rip, but twenty generations. They have recently
begun to build steamships, a line of telegraph is authorized,
postage stamps are being printed, and, best of all, for our
comfort, at the principal cities there is generally at least one
dealer who adheres to fixed prices for his goods. A daily paper is
now published in Chinese at Shanghai, and the English school there
is well patronized. All these things convince me that at last
Western civilization is making an impression. The inert mass
begins to move, and China will march forward ere long. The most
convincing proof of this is found, perhaps, in the fact that the
government appropriated in 1872 nearly two millions of dollars to
maintain a hundred and fifty students in the United States. These
are to be educated in our colleges and afterward employed
officially at home. No action could prove more conclusively that
China is at last awakening from her long centuries of repose.

But without railroads the material resources of the country can
never be thoroughly developed. I fear this will be among the last
features of our civilization which China will adopt, although the
most important for her progress, because, as before mentioned, a
railway cannot be built without desecrating graves by the
thousand, and this every true Chinaman would view with horror. Our
guide, although a remarkably intelligent man, and favorable to
improvements of all kinds, took his stand here, inflexibly
opposing the introduction of railways. No matter what material
advantages might accrue, nor how much money he might be offered,
no earthly consideration would induce him to disturb his
ancestors, who have lain in one place in uninterrupted succession
for nearly seven hundred years. If my friends Messrs. Garrison,
Field and Pullman, who have so skilfully managed to give us
elevated railroads without disturbing proprietary rights below,
wish to enhance their fame, let them ask a concession in the
Celestial Empire for railroads "topside," guaranteed to dodge
every grave, and I do not doubt their success. Such inborn
superstition as is here depicted dies hard, but it must pass away
with the spread of knowledge; it will, however, take time.
Nevertheless, China has a great future before it, as it has had a
great past, and instead of having passed her climacteric, I
predict that she is destined to reach a position of paramount
importance in the Eastern world.

       *       *       *       *       *

TUESDAY, December 26.

The Pie Ho is a magnificent ship, and we are delighted at getting
under the auspices of a French cook once more, after the
experiences we have had in Chinese cookery. No doubt about the
preeminence of the French in regard to human food. Whoever sends
the raw material, the French send the cooks. The _table
d'hote_, now common in England at the hotels, and the French
service found in private houses, all so very different from the
practice even since I began to revisit England, show how rapidly
the world is bowing to the French cuisine.

We are scudding along before the monsoon, the temperature that of
June, an agreeable change from Hong Kong, where the nights have been
chilly. We are out of the region of cold weather now for the
remainder of our travels. We reached Saigon, the capital of the
French settlement in Cochin China, at six this morning, after
sailing forty miles up a branch of the Cambodia. Lower Cochin China
belongs to France, and is under the rule of a colonial governor,
French troops being scattered through the provinces. It is a
low-lying district, celebrated only for growing more rice than any
other part of the world. Our ship took on large quantities of it for
France, but this is exceptional, the scarcity of freights being
everywhere so great that steamers are glad to get anything to carry.
The Saigonites are the lowest specimens of humanity we have yet
seen--miserable, sickly-looking creatures, and without the faintest
regard for cleanliness. Their long, coarse black hair hangs over
their shoulders in thick, tangled masses which apparently have never
known a comb. Every one chews the betel-nut without intermission,
young and old alike, and this so discolors the teeth and mouth as to
render them extremely disgusting. We drove about the town for a few
hours, but it was so hot we were compelled to return to the ship.
This is the God-forsaken-looking region about which France is now
disputing with China. I cannot but wish that every deputy had been
with me during the few days of my visit, that he might see what kind
of a land and what sort of human beings his country expected to
derive credit from by superintending.

What I have said previous to the foregoing paragraph was written on
the spot, and therefore I cannot be accused of being prejudiced by the
recent action of France, which has caused me, as its well-wisher,
much sincere regret. Any power acquired by France over this portion
of the world can be but illusory--wholly so. The importance even of
Saigon is so small that it offers no inducement to any of the
regular steamers to call as they pass. The French line alone visits
it under a subvention from the home government. A few poor French
people manage to exist after a fashion by trading with the ignorant
natives, and a few soldiers and a ship- of-war give some semblance
of French authority. But just as certain as the sun shines, should
any considerable commerce arise in Cochin China, the English will
absorb nine-tenths of it, and this by a law from which there is no
escape.

When the French people forced the government to withdraw from
Egypt they gave us reason to hope that Herbert Spencer's law,
which creates pacific principles in proportion that power is held
by the masses, had received a significant vindication. Let us hope
the republican element will ere long put its veto upon foolish
interference in Tonquin.

The night we spent at Saigon the French governor gave a grand
ball, five hundred invitations; but out of all this number how
many ladies, think you? Society here musters but thirty-five,
mammas and grandmammas included, and only three young ladies.
Think of it, ye belles of Cresson, Newport and Saratoga (Cresson
first, Mr. Printer, is quite correct)! fifteen officers in
dazzling uniforms for every lady!

We have on board several English merchants and one American, who
are taking a run home for a visit. The latter regrets that his
countrymen should be induced to drink green tea abominations, and
I console him by stating that a reform is surely near at hand.
These gentlemen agree that the American cotton goods are taking
the market and driving the adulterated English goods out. The
trade is increasing so fast that it was welcome intelligence for
them to be advised by the last mail that another large mill in
Massachusetts was being altered to make exclusively Chinese goods.
I congratulate my friend Edward Atkinson upon this result. But is
this new business to be permanent? I think not. The day is far
distant, I hope, when either labor or capital in America will have
to be content with the return obtained in a populous country like
Britain; and unless we have superior natural advantages we cannot
hope to compete with her. In cotton manufacture for the East we
have not any advantage, as I find that the cheapest way of
reaching China from New York is to ship via London. England can
bring the raw cotton from New Orleans or New York, and send the
manufactured goods to market for certainly not more than the cost
of transportation from the American mills to market, and therefore
England can retain that trade whenever she adopts the latest
improvements in mode of manufacture; and this she is as certain to
do as the sun shines, and probably to improve upon them.

       *       *       *       *       *

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 1, 1879.

The clock strikes twelve. Good-bye, 1878; and you, 1879, all hail!
Be as kind to us as the departed, and we shall in turn bless your
memory. This midnight hour of all the hours of the year is reputed
the best for framing good resolutions, but somehow those I have
tried at this season hitherto have not been exceptionally
fortunate in bearing good fruit. However, I have never "resolved"
on a New-Year's night before while suffering from heat and
mosquitoes. I conclude to hazard one, so here goes antipodal
resolution No. I. See what you are good for. I record it that it
may be the more deeply impressed upon my mind, and, if a failure,
that it may in print sternly stare me in the face, and not "down
at my bidding."

To-day we make our first acquaintance with punkas. They extend
throughout the cabin, ominous of hot weather, which I detest;
Vandy, on the other hand, revels in it, and it is his turn now.
Vandy handed me today a string of Cambodia money, sixty pieces,
which cost only two cents, showing to what fractions they reduce
exchanges in Cochin China. I have been careful to collect coins in
every place visited. Sock No. 1 is now full, and I have had to
start bag No. 2. I have some rare specimens; of Japan the set is
complete, from the gold cobang, worth $115, oblong, five inches
long by about three wide, down to the smallest copper piece. I
have some Chinese coins shaped like a St. Andrew's cross, dating
before Christ. The mania for coin collecting is another inherent
tendency the presence of which has probably never been suspected
in my disposition. But collecting the coin of the realm, when one
thinks of it, isn't at all foreign to my tastes. The form of
manifestation is different, that's all--old coin for new--the
"ruling love," to use a Swedenborgianism, being the same; and the
ruling love must be acted out, so Aunt tells me, even in heaven.
"Oh!" said L., when she heard this, "I wonder what they'll get for
Mr.----to do in the other world; there are no dollars and cents
there; but there will be the _golden harps_ for him to trim
and weigh." So he would still handle the siller, and be in his
element. Some time afterward, when this was recalled to L., she
declared that it was impossible that she could have said it.
"Mr.----trim and weigh! He would never be satisfied unless he were
_boiling it down solid_."

       *       *       *       *       *

SINGAPORE, Saturday, January 4.

We reached Singapore at dusk. The drive through the town was a
curious one. Nowhere else can such a mixture of races be seen, and
each nationality was enjoying itself in its own peculiar
fashion--all except the Chinese, who were, as usual, hard at work
in their little dens. No recreation for this people. Work, work,
work! They never play, never smile, but plod away, from early
morning until late at night. The Chinaman's objection to giving
his creditor in New York a note was because it "walkee, walkee
alle timee; walkee, walkee, no sleepee." They seem to me to
emulate these objectionable obligations.

We saw in Singapore our first lot of Hindoos, moving about the
streets like ghosts, wrapped in webs of thin white cotton cloth,
which scissors, needle, or thread have never defiled. The cloth
must remain just as it came from the loom; no hat, no shoes, their
foreheads chalked, or painted in red with the stamp of the god
they worship and the caste to which they belong. They are a small,
slight race, with fine, delicate features.

I went out for a stroll before retiring, and hearing a great noise
up the street, followed and came up with a Hindoo procession. The
god was being paraded through the Hindoo portion of the town amid
the beating of drums and blowing of squeaking trumpets. The idol
was seated in a finely decorated temple upon wheels, drawn by
devotees, many of whom danced wildly around, while others bore
torches aloft, making altogether a very gorgeous display. Priests
stood at each side performing mysterious rites as the cortege
proceeded. It was my first sight of an idolatrous procession, and
it made a deep impression upon me, carrying me back to Sunday-
school days, and the terrible car of Juggernaut and all its
horrors.

I have had many experiences in beds, from the generous feather
cover of the Germans to the canopy of state couch of England, but
to-night my couch was minus covering of any kind. Calling to
Vandy, I found he was in the same predicament. Each had instead a
long, stiff bolster lying lengthwise in the middle of the
mattress, the use of which neither of us could make out. We soon
discovered that there was no need of covering at the Equator; but
this bolster must have some use, if we could only find it. Upon
inquiring next day we ascertained that it is composed of a kind of
pith which has the property of keeping cool in the hottest
weather, and that it is the greatest relief at night to cultivate
the closest possible acquaintance with this strange bed-fellow; in
fact, in Singapore, "no family should be without it."

The island of Singapore, which is included in the British Straits
Settlements, is nearly seventy miles in circumference, with a
population of about one hundred thousand, one-half of which is
Chinese, the remainder Malays, Klings, Javanese, Hindoos, and
every other Eastern race under the sun, I believe, and a few
Europeans. Here the "survival of the fittest" is being fought out
under the protection of the British flag, which insures peace and
order wherever it floats. In this struggle we have no hesitation
in backing the Heathen Chinee against the field. Permanent
occupation by any Western race is of course out of the question.
An Englishman would inevitably cease to be an Englishman in a few,
a very few, generations, and it is therefore only a question of
time when the Chinese will drive every other race to the wall. No
race can possibly stand against them anywhere in the East.

On Sunday, Major Studer, United States Consul, and his
accomplished daughter, drove us to the house and gardens of the
leading Chinese merchant of this region, Mr. Wampoo, who received
and entertained us with great cordiality. His residence is
extensive and filled in every part with curios; but his gardens
are most celebrated, and far surpass anything of the kind we have
yet seen. His collection of Victoria Regia plants is said to be
the best in the world. Unfortunately none were in bloom, but a
flower was due, I understood, in about ten years! The kind old
gentleman invited us back to see it, and we accepted; but since
writing this we have heard, alas! that he has ceased to play his
part upon earth.

The newspapers here sometimes give strange local items. Here is
one from yesterday's _Times_:

"Tigers must be increasing on the island; a fine big male one was
caught in a pit on Christmas eve at the water-works." The fellow
was probably on the track of a Christmas dinner, and ventured to
the very suburbs of the town.

We were driven one day, by the major and Miss Studer, some ten or
twelve miles in the interior, passing through groves of cocoa and
betel-nut trees, both in full bearing, to a tapioca plantation,
where we saw many trees and plants new to us--the fan and sago
palms and many other varieties, bananas, nutmeg trees, bread
fruit, durion, gutta-percha trees and others. We also saw the
indigo plant under cultivation, and passed through fields of the
sensitive plant as we walked about, while pine-apples were
everywhere. We are in a new world of vegetation here, within a
degree of the Equator; but, rich as it is, there is still a
feeling of disappointment because it is all green--no bright hues,
no coloring, such as gives Florida its charm, or lends to an
American forest in autumn its unrivalled glory! It is always
summer, and the moisture of the tropics keeps everything green.
There is another cause of disappointment to one accustomed to the
primeval forest and its majestic trees. These monarchs cannot
develop themselves in the tropics, and in their stead we have only
underbrush, the "jungle" of the tiger, which does not at all come
up to one's expectations.

About one thousand men and women are employed upon this tapioca
plantation. Married Hindoos get twenty cents per day, but the
greater number are Javanese unmarried men, who get only sixteen
cents; both find themselves. The Javanese are Mohammedans from
Java _en route_ to Mecca as a religious duty. They come here
and work and save for two years to get sufficient to pay their
passage and return to this point, when they work a year more for
funds to carry them home. How vital is the creed which brings its
adherents to such sacrifice! This drive gave us an excellent
opportunity of seeing just how the people live in the country.
Dress is confined to the rag worn about the loins, except that the
women wear in addition a small cloth over their shoulders. The
children wear nothing whatever, but we saw none that were not
ornamented by cheap jewelry in the most extraordinary manner.

The subject of clothes, as we all know from the days of "Sartor
Resartus," lies very closely at the roots of civilization. I think
every thoughtful person must admit that here the Heathen Chinee
shows that he has reached the best solution of that annoying
question. The every-day dress of the Chinaman is to-day just what
it was thousands of years ago. As there is no going out or coming
in of fashion, he wears his clothes till they can be worn no
longer. The heavy-overcoats which distress Americans and are a
weight even to the Englishman, our celestial friend escapes by
having three or four light coats all of one pattern and weight. It
is a one, two, or a three-coat day, according to temperature.
Again and above all he escapes the horrid starch entirely, neither
shirts nor collars nor cuffs, sometimes like thin sheets of iron,
irritating his skin.

Vandy and I seriously resolved to-day that we would never again
tolerate a starched thing about us; no matter what others did, we
would discard the vile custom and be free. In revising this I am
bound to admit our weakness: neither Vandy nor I have been strong
enough to contend against our mothers. I don't know exactly what
Vandy's experience was, but I know he fell soon after our return.
For my part I fought it out awhile and tried many ways to win; but
my flannel and frieze underwear which I brought from China soon
became unwearable, I was informed, from shrinkage, then they had
broken into holes, and so on. They were finally missed from my
wardrobe, and I compromised by stipulating that I should return to
the shirt and collars and cuffs, and agreed they might be all pure
white--provided that little or no starch should be used--this is
an improvement, but linen is the most uncomfortable material
known, used as we use it.

Vandy and I when in the East reduced the time for bathing and
dressing in the morning to seven minutes. Of course, we have long
since given up the folly of shaving. How one envies the man of the
East who has but four articles to slip on, and no pins required:
socks and low shoes (no lacing), one; breeches, two; undershirt,
three; coat, four; and there he is, ready for breakfast. The coat
buttons close to the chin, and has a small upright collar, and a
watch-pocket outside; no cuffs, collars or neckties. Why does not
some born reformer of our sex devote his life to giving his fellow
man such additional happiness in life? Hundreds waste their
energies upon objects which, if accomplished, would not be half as
fruitful.

Here is a description of a woman's jewelry, as taken from life by
Vandy: lobes of ears pierced with holes large enough to allow
one's thumb to be inserted; above these holes two small gold-color
rivets in each ear; in each nostril two gold pendants, inserted by
screwing in; through the centre of the nose a large silver ring;
on each wrist four bracelets; higher up the arm more rings; around
her neck a necklace; around each ankle a large silver ring; and
around her big toe and the next, on both feet, were rings. The
smallest children wore many similar jewels. Upon these every penny
they can save is squandered, and to secure them they are content
to live on a little boiled rice and fish--a bamboo hut of one
apartment their only home, and a piece of cotton cloth their
wardrobe.

We had the pleasure of meeting, at Major Studer's, Mr. Hornaday, a
young gentleman who travels for Professor Ward, of Rochester, New
York, whose museum is well known the world over. Mr. Hornaday's
department is to keep the Professor's collections complete, and if
there be a rare bird, beast, or reptile on the globe, he is bound to
capture specimens. He had just returned from spending four months
among the savages of Borneo, where alone a supply of orang-outangs
could be obtained. He returned with forty-two of these links, shot
mostly by himself. He came one day upon two very young ones, and
these he has brought here alive. They are suggestively human in
their ways, and two better-behaved, more affectionate babies are
rarely to be met with. Let no anti-Darwinian study young
orang-outangs if he wishes to retain his present notions. The
museum, Mr. Hornaday is advised, is now short of dugongs, and he is
off for Australia next steamer to lay in a supply. The recital of
his adventures is extremely interesting, and I predict that some day
a book from him will have a great run.

What an interest is awakened by one who is able to tell stories of
his own experience! No wonder that Othello won Desdemona with the
recital of his adventures. He was the hero who had been the actor
in all the scenes he depicted. Listening to Mr. Hornaday was a
source of rare pleasure to-night. His chief regret is that he
missed, during his visit to Borneo, the largest mias ever seen on
the island. The natives discovered a troop, all of which made off
except the leader. He showed fight, but soon ran up a high tree,
from which the native weapons were unable to dislodge him. He was
beyond their reach and there he sat. It was resolved to cut down
the tree and capture him as he fell; but as soon as they came to
close quarters with the monster, he proved so powerful, fierce,
and courageous that the natives ran away and he got off.

Mr. Hornaday reached the spot just too late. "Why didn't you send
for me? Didn't you know my rifle would have reached him?" he
asked. They gave him no reason for their conduct, but he suspected
that they feared he would not have paid them had he made the
capture. Mr. Hornaday is confident this mias exceeded the height
stated by Wallace as the maximum.

Mr. Hornaday was more successful with the largest tiger shot in
India for years. He was out after cheetahs, and having no more
expectation of meeting with the nobler game than of encountering a
lion, had not his tiger rifle with him. On coming to the banks of
a small stream he was greatly surprised to see a tiger's fresh
footmarks--a big foot, too. Making a sign to his attendants to
stand motionless, he glanced up the stream, then down, and saw,
not far from him, leisurely strolling along the edge of the creek,
seeking a convenient ford, the largest tiger he had ever laid eyes
upon, although he had shot many. "Shall I shoot with this gun?" he
thought. "If I miss he will certainly be upon us. He will attack
one of my colored attendants first, anyhow, and I'll get a chance
to reload. I'll do it!" A moment after, the monster, having found
a ford to his liking, turned his head and looked cautiously down
stream before entering the water. Finding all quiet in that
direction, he turned to glance up stream. For this moment Mr.
Hornaday had waited. There is one spot only to hit a tiger--right
between the eyes. He fired and the beast fell. No other shot was
fired, for holes spoil a skin. The animal writhed for several
hours, no one daring to approach him, until he finally sank
exhausted upon the sand. I think it was fifteen pounds Mr.
Hornaday received from Government for this exploit. I have secured
the skin of this very beast, properly preserved, full head, open
mouth, glaring eyeballs, and all, and I am ready to match tiger
skins with any one.

In the absence of other commercial intelligence, I may quote the
market in Mr. Hornaday's line: Tigers are still reported "lively;"
orang-outangs "looking up;" pythons show but little animation at
this season of the year; proboscis monkeys, on the other hand,
continue scarce; there is quite a run on lions, and kangaroos are
jumped at with avidity; elephants heavy; birds of paradise
drooping; crocodiles are snapped up as offered, while dugongs
bring large prices. What is pig metal to this?

The climate of Singapore, as of all places so near the Equator,
would be intolerable but for the dense clouds which obscure the
sun and save us from its fierce rays; but occasionally it breaks
through for a few minutes, and we are in a bath of perspiration
before we know it. No one can estimate the difference in the power
of the sun here as compared with it in New York. Straw hats afford
no protection whatever; we are compelled to wear thick white
helmets of pith, and use a white umbrella lined with green cloth,
and yet can walk only a few steps when the sun is not hid without
feeling that we must seek the shade. The horses are unable to go
more than ten miles in twenty-four hours, and our carriage and
pair are hired with the understanding that this is not to be
exceeded. Nothing could exist near the line if the intense heat
did not cause evaporation upon a gigantic scale. The clouds so
formed are driven upward by the streams of colder air from both
sides, condensation then takes place, and showers fall every few
hours in the region of Singapore.

One is not only in a new earth here, but he has a new sky as well.
As the tropics have nothing to compare with our more brilliant
colors in the vegetable world, so the southern sky has no stars to
equal ours. Indeed, with the exception of the four in the Southern
Cross, two in the Centaur, and two or three others, there is no
star of the first magnitude to be seen, and the constellations are
poor compared with those of our splendid northern skies.
Shakespeare's

  ". . . inlaid with patines of bright gold,"

must seem hyperbole to the Australian. I saw the Southern Cross
many nights while at sea, and it is certainly very fine, as far as
four stars can make a cross; for, as usual, much is left to the
imagination. It is really not a cross at all. These long ocean
trips furnish the best opportunity for observing the stars, and I
have rubbed up my early knowledge on the subject so far as to be
able to point out all the constellations and many of the principal
stars; but away down here the North Star even is not to be seen,
and we have to steer by Orion's belt if the compass varies.

       *       *       *       *       *

TUESDAY, January 14.

We left Singapore to-day at three P.M. by the English mail steamer
Teheran, parting with very sincere regret from Major and Miss
Studer, to whom we had been so much indebted for our week's
happiness. These partings from kind friends on our way round the
world are the sad incidents of the trip. People are so kind, and
they do so much to render our stay agreeable, that we become
warmly attached, and have many excursions planned, when some
morning up goes the flag, boom goes the signal gun, "Mail steamer
arrived!" all aboard at sunset! and farewell, friends! We see them
linger on the pier as we sail away, good-byes are waved, and we
fade from each other's sight; but it will be long ere many faces
vanish from our memory.

While still gazing Singaporeward I am recalled to the stern duties
of life. These two baby orang-outangs I told you of are going to a
naturalist in Madras. What a present! and Vandy and I have
promised to do what we can in the way of attendance upon them. The
butcher comes to ask me when they are to be fed, and how, and
what. This is a poser. I am not up in the management of orang-
outangs, but Vandy has skill in almost everything of this kind; at
least he is safer than I, there being a good deal of the incipient
doctor about Vandy, and I search for him in this emergency. The
fact is, while I have had varied experiences in the matter of
delicate charges of many kinds, these have generally been of our
own species--a youngster to be taken home to his parents, a
dowager lady afraid of the cars--even a blushing damsel to be
transported across the Atlantic to the arms of her _fiance_
has been entrusted to me before this, but this charge is decidedly
out of my line. These fearfully human-looking, human-acting brutes
furnish much amusement to the passengers; but at first every lady
whom we took forward to watch them was compelled to run away
laughing and exclaiming, "Oh, they are so much like babies! It's
just horrid to see these nasty, hairy things carry on so!"
Confirmation strong, I suppose, of our kinship, so do riot let us
neglect our poor relations even if the connection be somewhat
remote. Bananas are their favorite delicacy, but this morning not
even that fruit could tempt them. I gave one to the smaller of the
two, but it would not take it. Then I tried the larger one. He
took it in his paw, peeled it at one end and put it to his lips,
then looking up at me with a sad, puzzled expression, dropped his
prize, and resting his head on his paw laid slowly down on the
straw, telling us all as plainly as could be that he was sea-sick.
Such was indeed the case; but in a few hours the sea fell and he
was as sprightly as ever. Monkeys move spasmodically, by jerks as
it were; not so these dignified, stately creatures: they are as
deliberate in all their actions as staid, sober people. One day a
passenger had offered a banana to the little one, but as it put
forth its paw, withdrew it. The wee thing stood this several
times, and at last laid down on its face and cried like a child--a
wicked cry; nor would it be comforted, the banana when offered
being petulantly rejected. They are much too human.

We called at Penang, an island on the western shore of the
Peninsula, also belonging to Great Britain, and had time to drive
around the settlement. The place is not to be compared to
Singapore in size, but vegetation is even more luxuriant. It was
very hot, and we envied the governor his residence on a mountain
peak eighteen hundred feet above the sea, where, it was reported,
fires are actually required at some seasons night and morning.
Penang exports large quantities of tin, and we took on a lot for
New York. This valuable production seems about the only metal
America has now to import, but some lucky explorer is no doubt
destined to find it in immense quantities by and by. Having got
everything else, it doesn't stand to reason that America should
not be favored with this also. Nothing unusual occurred upon our
run across the Bay of Bengal. Even Vandy enjoyed the sea voyage
this time; something he had never before done in his life, nor
ever done since. It was smooth and quiet steaming all the way to
Ceylon. I had been humming "Greenland's Icy Mountains" for several
days previously, about all that I knew of Ceylon's isle being
contained in one of the verses of that hymn, which I used to sing
at missionary meetings, when a minister who had seen the heathen
was stared at as a prodigy.

And indeed the "spicy breezes blew soft o'er Ceylon's isle" as we
approached it in the moonlight. We found Galle quite a pretty,
quaint little port, and remained there one night, taking the coach
next morning for Colombo, the capital. The drive of sixty miles to
the railway which extends to Colombo, seventeen miles beyond, is
one of the best treats we have yet had. The road is equal to one
of our best park avenues, as indeed are all the roads we saw in
Ceylon; from end to end it skirts the rocky shores, passing
through groves of cocoa and betel-nut trees, and dotted on each
side by the huts of natives at work at some branch of the cocoanut
business. Every part of the nut is utilized; ropes and mats are
made from the covering of the shell, oil from the kernel, and the
milk is drank fresh at every meal. These trees do not thrive
except near the coast, the salt air laden with moisture being
essential for their growth, but they grow quite down to the edge
of the sea. The natives have been attracted to this main road, and
from Galle to Colombo it is almost one continuous village; there
is no prettier sea-shore in the world, nor a more beautiful surf.
Every few miles we come upon large numbers of fishermen drawing in
their nets, which are excessively long and take in several acres
of sea in their sweep. An artist who would come to Ceylon and
devote himself to depicting "the fishers of Ceylon's isle" (how
well that sounds! and a good title is half the battle) would make
a reputation and a fortune. I am quite sure there is no more
picturesque sight than the drawing of their nets, several hundred
men being engaged in the labor, while the beach is alive with
women and children in bright colors anxiously watching the result.

The dress of the Ceylonese women is really pretty: a skirt closely
fitting the figure, and a tight jacket over the shoulders--all of
fine, pure white cotton cloth or muslin and quite plain, with
neither frill, tuck, flounce, nor anything of the kind. Necklaces
and ear-rings are worn, but I am glad to say the nose in Ceylon
seems to be preserved from the indignity of rings. The men's dress
is rather scanty, their weakness being a large tortoise-shell
comb, which every one wears; it reaches from ear to ear, and the
hair is combed straight back and confined by it. Women are denied
this crowning ornament, and must content themselves with a pin in
the hair, the head of which, however, is highly ornamented. The
Buddhist priests form a strange contrast in their dress, which
consists of a yellow plaid, generally of silk, wrapped around the
body and over the shoulders.

I asked our Ceylonese guide to-day whether he had ever heard of
our most popular missionary hymn. "Here is the verse," I said,
"about your beautiful isle ":

  "What though the spicy breezes
   Blow soft o'er Ceylon's isle,
   Though every prospect pleases,
   And only man is vile!
   In vain with lavish kindness,
   The gifts of God are strewn;
   The heathen, in his blindness,
   Bows down to wood and stone."

"What do you think of that description?" I asked. He said he
thought "the writer was a fool," and asked if any one in my
country believed that there was a man, woman, or child in Ceylon
who did not know better than to bow down to any power but God.
"Yes," I said, "I once believed it myself, and millions believe it
to-day, and good boys and girls with us save their pennies to send
missionaries to tell these heathen who worship idols how very
wrong and foolish it is to do so, and how very angry the true God
is to have anything worshipped but himself." He said ours must be
a very curious country, and he should like to visit it and see
such queer people. I gave him my address and promised, if he would
come to see me, to take him to a great missionary meeting where he
would see the best and most religious people, all greatly
concerned about the idolaters of Ceylon.

The truth is there is scarcely in all the world a human being so
low in the scale as not to know that the object he sees is only
the symbol of the invisible power. What the cross is to the
Christian the idol is to the other, and it is nothing more. The
worship of both is to the Unknown beyond. I did my best to soothe
the wounded spirit of our guide by explaining the necessities of
poetic license. Still he would have it that Bishop Heber had
wronged his beloved Ceylon and did not know what he was writing
about.

The religion of Ceylon is Buddhism; indeed it is now the most
strictly Buddhist country in the world. One condition of the
cession of the sovereignty to Great Britain was that this religion
should be held inviolable with its rights and privileges, its
monasteries and temples and all pertaining thereto. In the
language of the greatest European authority, "although government
support is no longer given to it, its pure and simple doctrines
live in the hearts of the people and are the noblest monument to
its founder Gautama Buddha. The taking of the meanest life is
strictly forbidden, and falsehood, intemperance, dishonesty,
anger, pride, and covetousness are denounced as incompatible with
Buddhism, which enjoins the practice of chastity, gratitude,
contentment, moderation, forgiveness of injuries, patience, and
cheerfulness." The priests of Buddha are regularly ordained and
sworn to celibacy, and they are required to meet each other every
fourteen days for purposes of mutual confession. The lowest caste
is eligible to the priesthood, as with the Christian religion.

Ceylon is somewhat smaller than Ireland, and the population is a
little less than three millions, but it is rapidly increasing, as
are its exports and imports. Of all the places we visited it seems
to have suffered least from the wave of depression which has
recently swept over the world. This is undoubtedly owing to the
fact that the spicy isle enjoys somewhat of a monopoly in coffee
and some of the spices, cinnamon especially. Java coffee is
generally used, I think, in America, but in Ceylon it is deemed an
inferior article; Mocha, in Arabia, furnishes the best, but much
called Mocha is really grown here. In the coffee plantations men
are paid eighteen cents per day; women, fourteen cents. A disease
akin to that which attacked the vines in France some years ago has
raged among the plants for two years past; it promises this year
to be less destructive, although no effectual cure has yet been
discovered. We met several coffee planters, generally young,
pushing Englishmen who either own the estates, or are related to
those who do. They lead a pleasant life in Ceylon, the climate
being good most of the year, and those who are contented declare
that a European can live there and enjoy as good health as at
home. If the weather prove too warm in the summer there are the
mountains to run to. Scientific cultivation of coffee began in
Ceylon as late as 1824, and public attention was not directed to
it until 1834--only fifty years ago--yet to-day there are more
than twelve hundred coffee plantations, and the amount of coffee
exported exceeds twenty millions of dollars per annum. Tea
cultivation has been introduced recently, and the quality is said
to be excellent. There cannot be any doubt of this, because it
finds a ready market here. None has been exported. If it were not
a remarkably good article the foreign would be preferred, as we
all know a domestic article has a world of prejudice to overcome
at first. I shall watch the Ceylon tea question with interest, and
hope that at some not distant day the production of tea leaf may
rival that of the coffee bean.

I have no intention to enter into any political
question--certainly not into the merits of Free Trade vs.
Protection; but I must own I was surprised to find that one-fifth
of the total revenue of the island is derived from taxes upon the
daily food of the people, two-thirds of this from a tax upon
imported rice, and the other third from native grain.

Ceylon teaches many lessons. The liquor traffic, for instance, is
managed throughout the entire island as a governmental monopoly.
Distillation is restricted to a few specified distillers who can
sell their product at wholesale in open market, but the right to
retail is restricted to certain taverns, which are rented year by
year to the highest bidders, subject to stringent conditions. Pure
arrack only can be sold at fixed prices, and lessees are held to
strict account for drunkenness and disturbances. The liquor
monopoly yields L170,000, or about one-seventh of the whole
revenue, which in 1873 was L1,241,558 ($6,200,000); about ten
shillings per head, as against England's two pounds and more.

The main roads of Ceylon are equal to those of Central Park; so
they should be, for their cost has exceeded L2,000 per mile. Ten
thousand dollars!--we could almost build a railway in the West for
this. However, it is not as much as it costs in Britain to get the
right to begin to spend money on a railway; so we must
congratulate the Ceylonese upon getting a splendid return for
their investment. During our brief sojourn in the island (alas!
all too short as I write these pages) we travelled over every mile
of railway there. This sounds large to one who judges of a railway
system by that of the United States--a hundred and twenty thousand
miles; there were then only about a hundred miles in all
Ceylon--two short lines. To-day there are doubtless a hundred and
Fifty miles in operation, as the line under construction between
Colombo and Galle was expected to be opened in two years more.
This brings Japan and Ceylon about even upon the railway question,
though the population of Ceylon is only about one-twelfth that of
Japan.

       *       *       *       *       *

KANDY.

A railway has been built from Colombo, the shipping port, through
the mountains to the coffee-growing districts, a distance of
seventy miles, and this enabled us to visit Kandy, more than 1,600
feet above the sea, and the summer capital to which the government
repairs in hot weather. It is a beautiful little town, and gave us
the first breath of air with "ozone" in it that we had enjoyed
since we were on the Sierras. Our hotel fronts upon the square,
and is opposite the Buddhist Temple, celebrated as the receptacle
of that precious relic, "the sacred tooth of Buddha." A former
king of Ceylon is reputed to have paid an immense sum for this
memento of the departed. We were too near the temple for comfort.
The tomtom has to be beaten five times each day, and as one of
these is at sunrise, I had occasion to wish the priest and tooth
both far enough away. I wonder the Europeans don't indict this
tomtoming at unseasonable hours as a nuisance.

The Botanical Gardens here are rivalled in the tropics by those in
Java only, and upon seeing the display of luxuriant vegetation, we
fully understood how it had acquired its celebrity; but still all
is green. The great variety of palms, the bread-fruit, banyan,
jack-fruit, and others sustain this reputation. The chocolate tree
was the most curious to us; it has recently been introduced in the
island, and promises to add one more to the list of luxuries for
which Ceylon is famous. A fine evidence of the intelligence of the
Ceylon planters is seen in the fact that the association employs a
chemist to investigate and report upon the different soils and
what they are capable of producing; under his supervision various
articles are always under trial. Recently Liberian coffee has been
found to thrive in low latitudes unsuited for the Arabian variety,
which requires a higher district, thus rendering available for
this plant a large area, which has hitherto been necessarily
devoted to less profitable uses. Nothing nowadays can be
thoroughly developed without the chemist's aid, and the day is not
far distant when our farming will be conducted under his
instructions as completely as our steel manufacture is now.

Ceylon is noted for its pearl fisheries and its supply of rubies,
sapphires, and cats'-eyes as much as for its spices; and from the
hour the traveller lands until the steamer carries him off he is
beset with dealers offering precious stones, worth hundreds of
dollars in London or New York, for a few rupees; but those who
purchase no doubt find their fate in the story of the innocent who
bought his gold cheap. The government keeps the pearl fishery
grounds under proper regulations, and allows divers one half of
all they find, the other half going to the State Treasury. I was
told the value of the pearls found last year amounted to $400,000,
but the production seems to be falling off. In 1798 the fishery
was rented for L142,000 ($710,000). Now the government has to work
it and the net proceeds have never exceeded L87,000 in any year,
and have fallen as low as L7,200.

The government employed a naturalist to study the habits of the
pearl oyster. He labored for five years, but this time scientific
investigation seems to have failed and we know but little more
about the subject than before. Some genius will come, however, to
solve all questions. Science may be rebuffed twenty times, but it
never rests until the truth is known. This much is certain, that
these precious oysters leave their usual beds for years together.
There was no fishery once for twenty-seven years, from 1768 to
1796, and once before then it failed for about fourteen years.
When they do visit pretty Ceylon, their main residence is upon the
northwestern coast, sixteen to twenty miles from shore. It is
believed that the oyster reaches maturity in its seventh year,
when the pearl attains full size and lustre. If the oyster be not
secured then, it soon dies and we lose our pearl. Consider the
number of these jewels which fade away to their original elements
in the depths of ocean: for one we get, a million decomposed.

Did the poet know how true his words were when he said:

  "Full many a gem of purest ray serene
   The dark unfathomed caves of ocean bear."

The government brings the oysters to the beach and sells them to
the highest bidders in lots of one thousand. Can you conceive of a
prettier game of chance than this! Imagine the natives at work
opening the rough shells, expecting at every turn to find a pearl
worth a fortune!

The pearl fishers descend six to eight fathoms forty or fifty
times a day, and can remain under water from a minute to a minute
and a half. So much for practice. In the course of a million or
hundred million years, more or less, each successive generation
pursuing this calling, under the law of inherited tendencies,
these people might well return to the amphibious state and give us
an illustration of evolution, backward.

The pearl oyster is a large, round bivalve, sometimes twelve
inches in diameter. If Thackeray felt, as he said when he first
tried a Rockaway, as if he were swallowing a baby, what would have
been his impressions if he had tickled his throat with one of
these monsters? Sometimes a dozen, or even twenty pearls, are said
to have been found in a single oyster. I remember hearing in China
that a fresh water mollusc is made to grow pearls by the
introduction of foreign bodies within the shell. These produce
irritation which the shell fish seeks to allay by depositing
around them a layer of pearly matter, and thus pearls are formed.
It is a fact that the celebrated Linnaeus was paid $2,500 by the
Swedish Government for a plan he discovered for doing a similar
thing with the oyster. He bored through the shell and deposited
sand particles, between it and the mantle of fine tissues. It was
not a success; but some day the race will produce pearls from
cultivated oyster beds as we now get our eggs from chickens; that
is, provided the coming man is not to regard jewelry of all kinds
as barbaric--"_barbaric_ pearls and gold" are Milton's very
words, and great poets are prophets. The tendency is certainly in
that direction. The more ignorant the natives, the more ornamental
jewelry is worn, even if it be immense, heavy glass bracelets from
Birmingham. Already one says, how simple, how grandly simple she
was, with her hair plain, her ears unpierced, her head and neck
without a single ornament, save only a rosebud in the hair. Jewels
are to women what wine is to man--not recommended till after
forty; and a poor help at any age.

       *       *       *       *       *

COLOMBO, Tuesday, January 21.

Ceylon was originally settled in 1517 by the Portuguese, who
obtained the right to erect a small factory at Colombo for
purposes of trade. This soon grew into a fort, and naturally the
whole west coast became theirs. The Dutch drove them out a hundred
and fifty years later, to be in turn expelled by the English after
they had occupied the island for just about the same period. As
with all their colonies, the Dutch left their impress upon Ceylon.
New industries were introduced, great public works constructed,
and, better than all, the education of the people was well cared
for. The trade with Holland became a source of much profit.
England has been master since 1796, nearly ninety years now, and
certainly the work she has to show for the less than a century is
marvellous indeed.

The people are not yet done rejoicing at the restoration of their
ancient village institutions, which took place in 1871. Europeans
had rudely swept these away and substituted courts after their own
fashion. After many years trial, they were seen to be unsuited for
the country, and the ancient village tribunals were reestablished,
as I have said, a few years ago. It will not do to conclude, as
many do, that India, Ceylon, and other of the Eastern lands, are
left almost bare of just laws and fair administration, for nothing
could be farther from the truth. The village elders, chosen by the
people of Ceylon, for instance, administer laws which are the
outgrowth of centuries, and as such are far better adapted to the
real conditions which exist than any other system of laws, no
matter how perfect, which have been found suitable in other lands
under conditions wholly unlike. Here in this charming island, as
indeed throughout all India, villages, or groups of villages, are
authorized to frame rules having the force of laws, and which
natives construe and administer.

I am amused at the ignorance of the average Englishman or American
upon Eastern affairs. He is always amazed when I tell him that so
far as representative institutions are concerned, there is not a
village in India which is not farther advanced in this department
of politics than any rural constituency in Britain. The American
county, village, district and township system is of course more
perfect than any other with which I am acquainted, but the English
is really about the most backward. The experiment in Ceylon of
restoring the native system has been an unequivocal success, even
beyond the expectations of its warmest advocates, and in addition
to the advantages flowing from the native courts, it is found that
the village committees are beginning to repair and restore the
ancient tanks and other irrigation works, which, under the curse
of centralized and foreign authority had been allowed to fall into
disuse.

The new blood of home rule in local affairs has aroused local
patriotism and established numerous bodies throughout the country,
each a centre from which good influences radiate, organizations
into which good impulses flow, to crystallize into works of public
utility, while at the same time an _esprit de corps_ is
created which must tell more and more. Wait till this plan is
tried in England and Scotland, and, above all, in unhappy Ireland!
I shall never despair of Ireland until at least a generation has
had such local institutions as we find in Ceylon's Isle. If that
people cannot develop under self-government, they deserve to fall
away and give place to a better race; but they will not fail.

Caste exists in Ceylon, although it is not so strictly preserved
as in India. Still, every calling is a caste, down to the
scavenger. The several castes do not intermarry, nor is it
practicable for one who has reaped great wealth and has natural
tastes and abilities above his caste, to do in this small island
what is readily done in India, viz., emigrate and set up in
superior style in some other part of the crowded empire. The
wealthiest native in Ceylon to-day is a fisherman, and yet he
cannot gain admittance to the society of poorer natives about him
of higher caste. If he were in India, and socially ambitious, he
would change his residence. I was told by several Europeans that
the bonds of caste in India are slowly weakening, and that when a
wealthy stranger comes to a district it is held wise not to
inquire too curiously concerning his birth.

Of all the castes, the tiller of the soil stands at the head in
Ceylon; even the skilled worker in iron is away below him. The
rural laborer with us must be taught to hold his head up. He is A1
in Ceylon.

The position held by Ceylon in ancient days as the great granary
of Southern Asia explains the precedence accorded to agricultural
pursuits. Under native rule the whole island was brought under
irrigation by means of artificial lakes, constructed by dams
across ravines, many of them of great extent--one, still existing,
is twenty miles in circumference--but the system has been allowed
to fall into decay. I am glad to know that government has resolved
to undertake the work of repair. Proper sluices are to be supplied
to all the village tanks, and the embankments are to be raised and
strengthened through the labor of the village communities. We may
yet live to see the fertility of the country restored to that of
its pristine days.

We saw the new breakwater which government is constructing here at
great expense. When finished it is proposed that the Indian
steamers shall call here instead of at Galle, the harbor of which
is dangerous. This may be a decided improvement upon the whole,
but the tourist who does not see pretty Galle and enjoy the long
day's drive through the island to Colombo will miss much.

Iron ore exists in Ceylon in vast deposits and is remarkably pure,
rivalling the best Swedish grades. It has been worked from remote
times, and native articles of iron are preferred even to-day to
any that can be imported. If cost of transportation is to keep
growing less and less, it is not beyond the range of possibility
that some day Britain may import some of this unrivalled stone for
special uses. There are also quicksilver mines, and lead, tin, and
manganese are found to some extent.

       *       *       *       *       *

GALLE, Wednesday, January 22.

We reached here last night upon our return, stopping one night at
Colombo. Future travellers will soon miss one of the rarest treats
in Ceylon. The railway will soon be completed from Colombo to
Galle, and the days of coaching cease forever. We congratulate
ourselves that our visit was before this passed away, as we know
of no drive equal to that we have now enjoyed twice, and the last
time even more than the first.

During our trip down yesterday I counted within forty miles eleven
schools filled with young Cingalese. English is generally taught
in them, and although attendance is not compulsory, great
inducements are held out to parents to send their children. The
advantages of knowing the English language are so decided that I
am told parents generally are most anxious to have their children
taught. The school-houses are simple affairs, consisting only of
white plastered walls about five feet high, with spaces for
entrance. On this wall rest the slight wooden standards which
support thereof of palm-leaves, so that all is open to our view as
we drive past. The attention paid to this vital subject, evidences
of which are seen everywhere, is what most delights us. In 1874
there were 1,468 public schools on the island, attended by 66,385
scholars.

We were equally delighted to see numerous medical dispensaries,
where the afflicted natives can obtain advice and medicine free of
charge. On several huts we saw large placards denoting the
presence of contagious disease within. It is a great work that is
going forward here under English rule. By such means England
proves her ability to govern, and best confirms her sway against
domestic revolt or foreign intrigues. The blessings of good
government, the education of the people, and careful attention to
their health and comfort--these will be found the most effective
weapons with which to combat mutiny within, or Russian or any
other aggression from abroad. From all we saw in Ceylon we are
prepared to put it forth as the best example of English government
in the world, England herself not excepted.

       *       *       *       *       *

SATURDAY, January 25.

At ten tonight we sailed for Madras and Calcutta by the English
mail steamer Hindostan, and were lighted out of the intricate
harbor by flaming torches displayed by lines of natives stationed
at the buoys.

"Flashes of flambeaux looked Like Demons guarding the river of
death."

The last sight of Ceylon's isle revealed the fine spires of the
Catholic Cathedral, which tower above the pretty harbor of Galle.

       *       *       *       *       *

INDIA.

MADRAS, Tuesday, January 28.

We arose to find ourselves at anchor in the open sea opposite
Madras. There is not a harbor upon the whole western coast of
Hindostan. Government is engaged in constructing one, but it is
slow work, as the immense blocks of concrete used can be handled
and laid only in smooth seas, which seldom occur. Sometimes the
mail steamers find it impossible to land passengers or cargo, and
are compelled to carry both to Calcutta. The surf often sweeps
over the top of the iron pier, which is certainly twenty feet
high. Passengers are taken ashore in native boats twenty feet long
and five feet deep. Across the boat, on small round poles, sit ten
rowers, five on each side; another man steers, and in the bow
stand two boys prepared to bail out the water which sweeps in as
we plunge through the surf. Fortunately the sea was unusually
calm, and we had no difficulty in reaching dry land. When the surf
is too strong for even these boats to encounter, natives
communicate with ships by tying together three small logs, upon
which they manage to sit and paddle about, carrying letters in
bags fastened upon their heads. As the solid logs cannot sink,
they are safe as long as they can cling to them, and an upset is
to them an occurrence of little consequence. We saw many of these
curious contrivances, but one must have a good deal of the
amphibious in his nature, or full faith that he was not born to be
drowned, to trust himself upon them through the Madras surf.

India at last! How strange everything looks! Brahmans, Cullrees
and Banians, devotees of the three different gods, with foreheads
marked to denote their status, the white sandal-wood paste upon
the Brahman's brow. Our first glimpse of caste, of which these are
the three main divisions, to one of which all persons must belong
or be of the lowest order, the residuum, who are coolies. There
are many subdivisions of these, and indeed every trade or calling
constitutes a different order, the members of which do not
intermarry, or associate, or even eat with one another.
Generations pursuing the same calling, and only marrying within
themselves, acquire a peculiar appearance, and this effectually
creates a caste. Carpenters, masons, merchants, each are distinct,
and the occupation of a man can readily be known by his dress or
manner.

Caste! what is caste? whence did it spring? and what are its
effects today in India? Whatever story I tell about its origin,
some great authority will flatly contradict it. The beginning of
caste, like that of most existing institutions, is lost in
obscurity; but the most likely guess to my mind is that which
founds caste upon this natural train of reasoning.

Before men travelled much, when the race were serfs and all their
needs were supplied by those immediately about them, it was almost
inevitable that the son should be put to his father's handicraft.
He could be of service there at a much earlier age than if he had
to go to a stranger. Besides, he had a chance from his infancy to
become familiar with the work, and again, his father's reputation
would serve a purpose. Therefore, successive generations remained
bakers, smiths, carpenters, agriculturists, laborers, and
eventually this developed special aptitudes under the law of
inherited tendencies and each occupation became a caste.

Those who were in the highest employments being the best educated,
they soon took measures to secure their privileges, and in the
past ages nothing could rivet the chains so effectually as the
sanction of the gods. Therefore, we need not be surprised that in
good time a revelation came to this effect: "When man was divided
how many did they make him? What was his mouth? What his arms?
What his legs and feet? Brahma was his mouth, Kshatriya his arms,
Vaisya his thighs, and Sudra his feet."

This gives four grand divisions for the race, and their duties
toward the State and to each other are clearly defined by the part
of the "Grand Man" or "God" from which they sprang. The following
are a few of the principal items of the code which regulates these
classes: To the first, or Brahman, belongs the religious
department--he studies and expounds the sacred books, officiates
at sacrifices, and is the recipient of the "presents" offered to
the gods. These are modern clergymen. To the second, or
Kshatriyas, are given the war department, force, and criminal
justice. These are our human butchers, the military class, who are
yet not ashamed of the "profession of arms." To the third, or
Vaisyas, belong commerce and agriculture, and to the poor fourth
estate, or Sudras, are left the mechanical arts and service to the
other castes. The first three alone wear the sacred thread.

The Brahman is entitled by primogeniture to the whole universe. He
may seize the goods of a Sudra, and whatever, beyond a certain
amount, the latter acquires by labor or succession. If he slanders
any of the other castes he pays only nominal fines graduated
according to classes. Whatever crime he may commit his personal
property cannot be injured, but whoever strikes a Brahman even
with a blade of grass becomes an inferior quadruped for twenty-one
generations. He is the physician for men's bodies as well as for
their souls.

The one duty of the Sudra is to serve all the three superior
castes "without depreciating their worth." In administering oaths,
a Brahman swears only by his veracity--"his honor as a gentleman."
A Kshatriya swears by his weapons, a Vaisya by his cattle, while
the poor Sudra has to swear by all the most frightful penalties of
perjury.

A curious survival of this same idea lingers in England, where the
theory is that all men are equal before the law. Nevertheless
members of the Royal Family are still released from the suspicion
that they would not tell the truth unless they took an oath to do
so. They are not required to take an oath before testifying in
court. But imagine Herbert Spencer and the average Prince giving
evidence; whose word would go the farther the wide world over? Yet
the former would be insulted by being compelled to swear, while
the latter would be allowed to testify upon the "honor of a
prince," a very scanty foundation as princes have ever been and
must ever be. History seems to teach us that it has been difficult
to get this class to keep the oaths they did take. If I were an M.
P., I would move that this be changed. The Brahman,
notwithstanding his superior station, is nevertheless held to be
much more liable to pollution than the lower orders, and is
therefore required to bathe more frequently, and to be much more
watchful against the tempter. Our Brahmans at home might take a
lesson from this. A high authority has told us that

  "Life can be lived well,
   Even in a palace."

But Burns has the truth:

  "And certes in fair Virtue's heavenly road
   The cottage leaves the palace far behind."

I have given you the ideal of caste and its laws. Their
administration is a far different matter. It is no longer possible
for Brahmans to enforce strictly their claims. Caste crumbles away
before the progress of the age. Your railway is a "sure destroyer"
of all branches of inequality among men. The Press a still
greater; but ages will pass ere we have among the two hundred and
fifty millions of Hindostan anything approaching that degree of
equality and intermarriage of classes which even England
possesses, to say nothing of America. The marvel is that caste
took such root throughout India apparently in opposition to the
teachings of Gautama Buddha. But it is scarcely less strange than
that the fighting Christian nations found their system upon the
teachings of the Prince of Peace.

Here is the true doctrine of the Eastern Christ: As the four
rivers which fall into the Ganges lose their names as soon as they
mingle their waters with the holy river, so all who believe in
Buddha cease to be Brahmans, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas, and Sudras. The
same doctrine is beautifully expressed in the "Light of Asia."
Buddha asks for a drink of milk from a shepherd.

  "'Ah, my Lord,
   I cannot give thee,' quoth the lad; 'thou seest
   I am a Sudra, and my touch defiles!'
   Then the world-honored spoke: 'Pity and need
   Make all flesh kin. There is no caste in blood,
   Which runneth of one hue, nor caste in tears,
   Which trickle salt with all; neither comes man
   To birth with tilka-mark stamped on the brow,
   Nor sacred thread on neck. Who doeth right deeds
   Is twice-born, and who doeth ill deeds vile.
   Give me to drink, _my brother_. '"

Our friend in Madras gave us a rare treat by driving us out to see
the celebrated Madras tigers, for nowhere else in the world are
such tigers kept as here, and indeed I go so far as to declare
that until one has seen these grand animals he has no adequate
idea of what a tiger is. All that I have seen hitherto--and I do
not forget the "Zoo" in London--are but tame mockeries of the
genuine monster. I walked up to a large cage, but was startled by
such a fright. A tiger was in an instant flat against the cage,
and between me and it were only a few small iron rods which
rattled like reeds as he struck them. I thought the whole cage was
in pieces, and that beast upon me. Such glaring eyes, burning like
immense topazes in his head! and then when he found himself unable
to get at his prey, such a yell! but I was many feet from him ere
this came, I assure you. He had sprung from the back of his cage
against the bars, a distance of at least fifteen or eighteen feet,
the moment he saw me, and no doubt hurt himself as he dashed
against them. The keeper told us this one had only been caught a
few months ago. His stripes were glossy black, and his coat not
that sickly tawny color we are so familiar with, but a light fiery
brown. Compared with the tiger, it is impossible but that even the
noblest lion must seem tame and inert. We took no interest in the
lions, although there were some fine specimens. In the evening we
enjoyed hearing the Governor's band performing on the beach and
seeing Madras society congregated there, and for the first time
since we left America saw full-sized horses again. Several
gentlemen were riding animals that would pass muster in Central
Park. Thus far we have found only little ponies in use.

Our races have never been brought face to face with famine, but in
India the masses are always upon the brink of starvation; a little
too much, or too little, rain during the monsoon, and the lives of
millions are endangered. The miserable wretches--mere
skeletons--we saw to-day sitting on the dusty road sides
beseeching passers-by for a pittance, are traces which still
remain of the terrible famine of the years 1876 and 1877. Both the
monsoons of the former year failed, and the season of 1877 was
little better, although the government spent more than eleven
millions sterling ($55,000,000) in strenuous efforts to supply
enough food to render existence possible. More than five million
human beings, more than the entire population of the State of
Pennsylvania--far more than that of Scotland--were sacrificed from
want and disease resulting from the famine of these two years.
There is no doubt about the correctness of this startling
statement, for it is founded upon the increased death rate in the
afflicted districts.

It was while the shadow of this calamity, unparalleled since the
beginning of British rule in India, was over the land that the
most gorgeous "durbar" ever held in India was ordered for the
purpose of gratifying a whim of Queen Victoria, who had induced
Lord Beaconsfield to have her proclaimed Empress of India, or, as
is far more probable, which he had instigated her to accept. The
natives who spoke of this to us were outraged at the act, and
quoted it as proof that their lives and sufferings were held as
nothing by England. This does England gross injustice, for, as I
was able to tell them, English opinion was itself averse to giving
the Queen a title in India which they could not be induced to
tolerate at home, and only acquiesced because Victoria had really
done so much that was good during her long reign that they did not
wish to deny her what she had unfortunately set her heart upon;
and then after all the poor Queen probably did not know about the
famine. Her books show that her interest in life is confined
strictly to the petty details of her household and narrow circle
of satellites.

Today our Sunday-school recollections were again aroused by a
sight of the terrible car of Juggernaut. It is really an immense
affair, elaborately carved in bold relief, and on the top is a
platform for the priests. I should say the car is twenty-five feet
high and about eight by twelve at the base; it has six wheels,
four outside and two in the centre, the former nine feet in
diameter and the latter six, all of solid wood clamped together
with iron bands, and all at least two feet in width of tread. Such
a mass, drawn through the streets by elephants and accompanied by
excited devotees, its hundred bells jangling as it rolled along
where there was not another vehicle of any kind with which to
compare it, or a house more than one small story high, must have
appeared to the ignorant natives something akin to the
supernatural; and I can now well understand how wretches, working
themselves into a state of frenzy, should have felt impelled to
dash under its wheels. It is still paraded upon certain festival
days, invariably surrounded, however, by policemen, who keep the
natives clear of the wheels, for even to-day, if they were not
prevented, its victims would be as numerous as ever. Imagine, if
you can, with what feelings we stood and gazed upon this car,
which has crushed under its ponderous wheels religious enthusiasts
by the thousand, and which still retains its fascination over men
anxious to be allowed the glory of such self-immolation, at the
supposed call of God, who would be a fiend if he desired such
sacrifice.

We left Madras on Wednesday morning, and had a fine smooth sail
across the Bay of Bengal to Calcutta, the City of Palaces and
centre of the British power in India. Coming up the river we pass
the shipping in review, and never before have we seen so many
large, magnificent sailing ships in one port, not even in
Liverpool or London. The trade requires large clippers, and these
splendid vessels lie four and five deep for two miles along the
river, all in fine trim, flags flying, and looking their best. We
pass the palace of the old King of Oude, who was brought here when
deposed for his misdeeds. He is allowed a pension of $50,000 per
month, which seems a great waste of money, as it is mostly
squandered by the old reprobate. His collection of birds and
beasts is a wonderful one, for he pays any price for animals; last
month he paid $12,500 for two grand tigers, but they escaped a few
days afterward and swam across the river.

The first queer thing that strikes you at your hotel is that two
natives take you in custody without even saying "by your leave,"
and never while you are in Calcutta will you be able to get out of
sight of one or the other of these officers. One attends in person
to your room, brings you your tea and toast at six, prepares your
bath, takes your shoes to the proper "caste" man below (he
wouldn't black them for the world, bless you!), and plays the
valet while you dress. At night you find him stretched out across
your door, like a dog on the watch, and there he lies all night,
subject to master's call. I hurt my man's feelings one night by
gently stepping over his prostrate form and getting into my room
and going to bed without his aid. I turned the key when I got
inside, and not many moments after I heard him move. Missing the
key, he suspected something was wrong, and tried the door several
times; but as he met with no response he finally gave it over, and
lay down to sleep. The other attendant is our waiter at table and
out-door servant. You find these people curled up and lying at
every step through the halls, and are in constant danger of
stumbling over them. Every guest generally has two, although the
hotel professes to keep an efficient staff of its own. We hear
amusing stories told of servants in India, their duties being so
strictly defined by caste that one must be kept for every trifling
duty. Our friend the Major tells us, for instance, that upon a
recent occasion his wife wished to send a note to him at the Fort,
a very short distance from his residence. The proper messenger
happening to have been sent elsewhere, she asked the coachman to
please take it to master, but he explained how impossible it would
be for him to comply, much as he wished to do so. Persuasion was
useless; but madame thought of a remedy--order the carriage. The
grooms prepare and harness the horses, the coachman mounts the box
and appears at the door. "Now drive to master's, and, attendant,
deliver this note." All right. This brought it within the sphere
of his caste. He is bound to obey all orders connected with the
carriage. Incidents of this nature are too numerous to recount. It
is in India that political economists can best study the division
of labor in its most advanced stage of development. My friend Mrs.
K. kindly gave me her list of servants and their various duties,
They numbered twenty-two, although Mr. K.'s establishment is a
moderate one.

We find the Zoological Gardens very interesting. Here we saw for
the first time monkeys running about unfettered among the trees,
and a lion chained to a dog-kennel doing watch duty like a
mastiff. We also saw an entire house devoted to the display of
pheasants. These birds make a fine collection, for there are
numerous varieties, and some exceedingly beautiful. There are here
two full-grown orang-outangs and one child, the former even more
human than the pets we had recently been in charge of. The huge
crocodile in a large pond failed to make his appearance yesterday,
and while we were there five natives with long poles and two in a
small boat were detailed to stir him up and see what was the
matter. It was amusing to see these naked attendants as they waded
in a few feet and poked about, ready to jump back at every
movement of the water, and sometimes frightened at each other's
strokes; but all will agree with me that this business of stirring
up crocodiles at twenty cents per day yields no fair compensation
for the risks involved. There are good tigers here also, but
having seen the tiger of the world at Madras, all others are but
shadows. It is the same now with peacocks, which in these
latitudes are far superior to those with us, but the peacock is at
Saigon, in Cochin China, and we never see one without saying, one
to the other, "How poor!" We are in a few days to see the Taj, and
I suppose it will be the same as to buildings hereafter. Even
Walter Scott's monument at Edinburgh--my favorite piece of stone
and lime--must be surpassed by this marvel of perfection.

I have been considering whether it is more productive of pleasure
really to have seen or heard the admitted best of everything,
beyond which you can never expect to go, and as compared with
which you must actually hereafter be content invariably to meet
the inferior, or whether one had better, for the retention of
future interest in things, not see the very topmost and unrivalled
of each. I have met people whose ears, for instance, were so
cultivated as to render it painful for them to listen even to the
grandest music if indifferently performed; some who had
"atmosphere" and "chiaro-oscuro" so fully developed that copies of
even the "Madonna di San Sisto" were only daubs offensive to the
eye; others who, having seen Macready in Macbeth, find the tragedy
stale in others' hands. Now I don't believe this ensues where the
love of the art itself is genuine; and I rejoice to say that
having once listened to an oratorio at the Handel Festival with
four thousand selected performers, that oratorio becomes forever a
source of exquisite enjoyment, performed where or how it may be.
If poorly done, the mind floats up toward the region, if it does
not attain quite the same height, where it soared at the perfect
recital; the distinct images there seen, which Confucius justly
gives music the power of creating, come vividly again as the notes
swell forth. The priests who call are different, indeed, but the
gods who respond are one and the same. So having seen Janauschek
in Lady Macbeth, all other Lady Macbeths participate in her
quality. Having almost worshipped Raphael's Madonna, all other
Madonnas have a touch of her power. It is of the very essence of
genius that it educates one to find beauty and harmony where
before he would only have trodden over barren sands, and the
grand and poor performances of any masterpiece are not a contrast
to the truly receptive, but are as steps leading from the lowest
to the highest in the same temple. Because one has been
awe-stricken by Niagara's torrent, are the other waterfalls of the
world to be uninteresting? No; to the man whose soul has really
been impressed, every tiny stream that tumbles down in foam is
related to the greater wonder, partaking to some extent of its
beauty and grandeur. Having seen the Himalayas, are the more
modest but not less dear Alleghanies to lose their charm and
power? Never! Let me go forward, then, and revel without
misgivings in the highest of human and divine creations, as I may
be privileged to see or hear or know them. I do not fear that I
shall ever become a member of the extensive band we meet in our
travels who have become incapable of enjoying anything but the
best.

We paid a visit to the river one morning to see the Hindoos
performing the sacred rite of bathing, which their religion
commands. Crowds of men and women enter the water promiscuously
and pray together. What a mercy that Brahma thought of elevating,
personal cleanliness to the rank of the virtues! What thousands
are saved every year in consequence! What this crowded hive of
human beings in hot India would become without this custom it is
fearful to contemplate. I find our friends all regretting that
Mohammed was less imperative upon this point. His followers take
rather to sprinkling than immersion, for dipping hands and feet in
water is held by them as quite sufficient, and both are not
equally efficacious as purifiers in the tropics, however they may
be as religious ceremonies.

A Boston clipper ship was being unloaded of its cargo of Wenham
Ice as we strolled along the wharf in the warm early morning. The
great blocks were carried upon the heads of the naked Sudras, one
at a time, and even at this early hour the ice was melting fast,
the drops of cool water forming tiny rills on the soiled, dark
skins of the carriers, who no doubt enjoyed the rare luxury of
something really cold. The exportation of ice to the East was a
great Boston industry at that time; today it is wholly gone, the
artificial being now made and sold at every centre for one-third
the price commanded by the natural product. A slight improvement
in the mode of manufacture, and, presto! here at the Equator,
where the temperature is always at our summer heat, we make ice by
the ton and are able to sell it at prices which the poorest
population in the world can readily pay. Where are we going to
stop in the domain of invention?

One day we visited the temple sacred to the bloody goddess "Kali,"
from whom Calcutta derives its name. She took her rise, as many gods
have done, from her insatiable thirst for human blood. One powerful
giant alone was able for many years to withstand her arts, he being
secretly informed by a spirit that when she pursued he had only to
stand in water, and if one drop of his blood was spilled, other
giants would spring forth and devour "Kali" herself. This secret she
divined, however, and one day attacked him even in the water,
strangling him and sucking every drop of his blood without spilling
one. But her tongue grew so large and red that she was never
afterward able to get it back into her mouth, and now she stands
fixed in this temple, her big red tongue hanging out, a most
revolting sight. So powerful is she esteemed that pilgrims to her
shrine, who have spent months in coming hundreds of miles by
measuring their bodies upon the dusty ground, are sometimes seen
passing through the by-lanes of Calcutta. Lying flat, they mark
their length, rise, and lie down again at this mark, and go on this
way, never leaving the path day or night, and begging food and water
enough to sustain them as they proceed. I was told of one man who
travelled eight hundred miles in this manner. Imagine the strength
of the superstition which can so blind its dupes. But even this is
nothing compared with the self-inflicted torture practised by many
"who seek to merit heaven by making earth a hell." It is not rare
for fakirs to stand in postures that cripple them for life. One
elects to stand on one foot until it becomes impossible for him ever
to put the other to the ground. Another determines to raise his arms
to heaven, never taking them down. In a short time, after
excruciating pain, the joints stiffen so as to render any change
impossible, and the arms shrivel until little but bone is left. Some
let their nails grow into their flesh and through their hands. The
forms of these penances are innumerable, and those who undergo them
are regarded as holy men and are worshipped and supported by their
less religious fellows. Kali must still have her blood, and hundreds
of kids, goats, buffaloes, and other animals are sacrificed daily at
her shrine. We saw the bloody work going forward. Crowds of
pilgrims, numbering at least three hundred during our short stay,
came in bands from the country to propitiate the goddess. Each one
presents an offering as the idol is shown. It is the most disgusting
object I have ever seen, and a sight of it would, I am sure,
frighten children into crying. The business is skilfully managed. A
small dark hall, capable of holding about twenty-five worshippers,
occupies the space before the idol. This is filled with people and
the doors closed; then, amid the murmurs of priests and beating of
gongs, two sliding-doors are drawn aside, and the horrible
she-demon, with swollen blood-red tongue, comes into view for a
moment only, and the gifts are thrown at her. The crowd is excited
by fear and awe, but ere the figure can be closely scrutinized the
doors close, and the poor ignorant wretches seem stupefied with what
has been revealed. They pass slowly out, looking as if they had been
almost blinded with a glimpse of the forbidden mysteries, and
another batch crowds in to be similarly worked upon. We saw other
forms and figures of worship too gross to speak of. Nothing yet seen
can be called idolatry when compared with this, and I felt like
giving up all hope of improvement in these people; but then when one
sees the extent and character of the superstitions of the East he
cannot help having doubts of the advancement or elevation of the
species. There is, however, this consoling knowledge, that the
worshippers, such young girls and boys as we saw today excepted,
know that Kali is but the symbol of power, not the power itself.
Around this fact the forces able to overthrow superstition may be
evolved hereafter. The germ is there.

The hundreds of young, pretty, innocent children whom we saw
brought to-day to witness such rites by kind, dutiful, religious
parents--the most conscientious and most respectable of the native
race--were dressed with as much care and pride as a corresponding
number of young Christians would be when taken to the rite of
confirmation. How could I be otherwise than sad and murmur,
"Forgive them, for they know not what they do." Thus far is plain
sailing, for every one will agree with me; but when I denounced to
the priests the pools of clotted blood as offensive, even to
coarse men, and wholly unfit as a satisfactory offering to any
power to whom we can ascribe the name of God, they retorted by
saying this is also part of the Christian system: the God of
Abraham demands his sacrifice of blood also. It is in vain to
intimate that this day is past and that our Father in heaven no
longer takes delight in the blood of rams or of bullocks. I shall
never forget the malicious inquiry: "Does your God _change_,
then?" "No, certainly not; but our conceptions of him change year
by year as we gain knowledge." They smile, and I am troubled. Let
us pause and reflect before we rashly assail any form of religion
until we know that what we have to offer in its place is really
free from the errors we mourn over in others. In the progress of
the race such dreadful conceptions of God must apparently exist
for a time. Has not Herbert Spencer himself assured us that,

  "Speaking generally, the religion current in each age and among
   each people has been as near an approximation to the truth as
   it was then and there possible for men to receive."

I needed all this from the philosopher to restrain my indignation
at first and afterward to mitigate my sorrow. Even this was not
quite sufficient, but how much an anecdote will sometimes do, and
this one the philosopher above quoted told me himself. At times,
when disposed to take gloomy views of man's advance, and sickened
by certain of his still barbarous beliefs and acts, he had found
relief in the story Emerson tells of himself when in similar
moods. After attending a meeting--perhaps the one where he was
hissed from the platform for denouncing human slavery--he walked
home burning with indignation; but entering his grounds, and
wandering among the green grass and the flowers, silently growing
in the cool moonlight, he looked up at the big trees and the big
trees looking down upon him seemed to say: "What! _so hot, my
little sir!_" Yes, we must upon our "distemper sprinkle cool
patience." If all is not well, yet all is coming well. In this
faith we find peace. The endless progress of the race is assured
now that evolution has come with its message and shed light where
before there was darkness, reassuring those who thought and who
therefore doubted most.

General Litchfield, United States Consul, fortunately accompanied
us upon this visit, and he knew two of the officiating priests,
who spoke English perfectly. These escorted us round and told us
about everything. The history of these two natives is most
suggestive. They were educated by the government in one of its
colleges, and very soon saw the falsity of their religious tenets,
but failing to get suitable employment, they had to return to
their families, who owned a share in the Kali Temple, which is
still profitable property, held like any other building. The
revenues are now divided among a hundred priests, and maintain
these and their families, all of whom are of the same family.
Should another son marry he becomes entitled to a certain share,
and so on. They carry this imposture on simply as a matter of
business, and laughed at us when we said they knew it was all
humbug. If it be true that no religion can long retain vital force
after its priests know it to be false, then there is hope for the
speedy fall of idolatry in India; but I fear there will be no lack
of men who will, like these hypocrites, continue to preach what
they know better than to believe, as long as rich livings are at
stake.

In one of our drives General Litchfield pointed out the house
where Macaulay wrote some of his essays while here laying the
foundations of the law code which has proved such a boon to India.
I see one great tribute paid to this monument of his genius: the
codification of the law in England is urged forward by pointing to
the indisputable success of the Indian code.

India has also great capabilities in regard to another article of
the largest consumption--tea. In this it is not improbable she
will some day rival even China.
 We have been travelling for some days with a gentleman largely
interested in its cultivation in the Assam district, and learn
from him that the tea grown there commands a higher price than the
Chinese article. It also prospers in several other parts of India,
and the amount grown is increasing rapidly. The total export in
1878 was 34,000,000 pounds, while last year, 1883, it reached, it
is stated, 57,000,000 pounds, a large increase, while the tea
culture in China is about at a stand-still, the amount exported to
England in 1868, L11,000,000, exceeding that in any year since.
India, therefore gains rapidly upon China, and prophets are not
wanting who assert that as India was the original home of the
plant (as some authorities claim), so India is going to furnish
the world in future most of its tea. This may all be true and yet
the amount grown in India be a bagatelle to the product of China,
which consumes at home about nine times the amount exported.
Indian tea is pure, while that raised by both the Japanese and
Chinese is adulterated. It is also much stronger. I advise all to
give the Indian tea a fair trial.

India, you see, has great possibilities. She is distanced in
cotton, is a good second in wheat, and has a place in the race for
tea, with odds in her favor in the latter as far as export goes. I
think this describes her situation fairly.

There are very few really successful equestrian statues in the
world, but Calcutta boasts one of these--Noble's statue of
General Outram. The artist has taken a bold departure, and instead
of the traditional eagle glance of the hero, the general is
represented as just checking his impetuous speed and casting a
look behind; the body turned round, and one hand resting on the
horse's flank, while the other reins in the horse; his head bare,
as if in the attack he had outrun his troops, lost his helmet, and
was stopping a moment for them to overtake him. I liked this
statue much, and wished that some others of which I wot partook of
its merits.

We attended the Viceroy's ball on Wednesday evening, and enjoyed the
brilliant scene. The uniforms of British officers as well as those of
the Civil Service are gorgeous, and set off a ball-room effectively.
We saw more ladies here than upon all other occasions combined
during our travels, and their general appearance was certainly
better than elsewhere, showing the climate to be less severe upon
them. Lord Lytton is a small man of unimposing appearance, and
entirely destitute of style, but the Commander-in-Chief, General
Haines, seems every inch a soldier, as do many of his subordinate
officers. Native princes were formerly invited to these balls, and
their presence, attended by their suites in Oriental costumes, added
much to the brilliancy of the scene, but it was found desirable to
discontinue the practice; they could not partake of European
refreshments nor understand the appearance of women in public, and
especially their dancing, nor, I fancy, could they look with
becoming gravity upon dignitaries so engaged, as they employ people
to do their dancing. I confess it struck me as bordering upon the
farcical to see Lord Lytton, charged with the government of more
than two hundred millions, and General Haines, Commander-in-Chief,
with an active campaign on his hands, Sir Thomas Wade, Her Majesty's
Ambassador to China, and the Lieutenant-General, all in uniform, and
the two former in knee- breeches, "all of ye olden time," doing
"forward four and turn your partner" in the same quadrille. Imagine
President Lincoln, Secretaries Seward and Stanton, and General Grant
so engaged.

The Viceroy of India has certainly to do his part in the way of
ceremonial. Flaming handbills of an English circus announce that
the performances are under his direct patronage. "Victoria, the
Empress of the Arena," is to-night to perform her unparalleled
feats in the ring in the presence of His Excellency. This was the
only tribute we saw paid in India to Her Majesty's spick-and-span
brand-new title of Empress. We attended the performance, which was
really creditable, but the natives sat unmoved throughout every
scene; so different from the conduct of the Japanese, who scream
with delight like children under similar circumstances. The
Indians seem to take their pleasures sadly, like ourselves.

We did not fail to visit the famous banyan tree of Calcutta, by
far the largest in the world. Vandy and I started and paced it
around until we met, counting three hundred and thirteen steps,
or, say, three hundred yards; the main trunk is probably about
thirty feet in circumference, but from each main branch roots have
descended to the earth and become supporters of these branches,
allowing them to extend still farther. In this way a branch may
have in its course three or four supporters at intervals of twenty
or thirty feet; the leaves are thick, and much resemble those of
the rubber tree in size and character.

We see numerous native barbers engaged in shaving the people.
Victim and operator squat down in a corner on their "hunkers,"
facing each other, and the operation then begins, the utensils
being laid out upon a rag on the ground. It seems the most
unnatural posture in the world for shaving or hair-dressing, but
as it is the custom there must be some advantages in it which we
cannot even guess.

One morning we drove to the burning ghat, and from personal
examination of cremation, I am able to express my preference for
Christian burial. The business of burning the dead--for in India it
is a business like any other, and belongs to a low caste--is carried
on in the most heartless manner. A building is erected upon the
river-bank, about a hundred feet in length and twenty-five feet in
width, and open on the side toward the river. The dead are brought
there upon stretchers wrapped in a little cloth, and are first
shaved by the attendants, who open the mouth and pour down a vial of
the water of the sacred Ganges. The body is then bent into a sitting
posture, carried out to the middle of the building, and wood built
around it. We saw the embers of several piles which had just done
their work, and one pile blazing, through the interstices of which
parts of the body were plainly visible. It was all horrible to me as
conducted here, but I can conceive of the grand funeral piles of the
high priests being made most impressive; and so I am told they are,
but the cremation of the poor lacks every element of this nature. My
heart bled for a poor widow whose husband had just been taken to the
pile. She was of a very low caste, but her grief was heartrending;
not loud, but I thought I could taste the saltness of her tears,
they seemed so bitter; but she has this consolation to comfort her
after the outburst, that she insured the eternal happiness of her
mate by having his ashes mingled with the sacred river of God. No
one will touch or associate with the caste who dress and burn the
dead, nor could any one be induced, save one branch of this caste,
to furnish the fire which lights the funeral pile, for which
sometimes large sums are exacted, in case the relatives of the dead
are wealthy.

The absence of women, other than coolies, which has struck us
everywhere in the East, is if anything even more marked in India,
where, so far, we have scarcely seen one woman of high caste. The
Mohammedans do not permit their ladies ever to leave the house,
and upon rare occasions, when temples must be visited, they are
closely concealed from view and driven in a close carriage or
carried in a sedan chair. The Hindoos are not quite so strict, and
we have seen a few in secluded streets going a few steps, but
closely muffled up and with faces covered.

Do you remember with what laughter the sun-spot theory was
received? At least I know I laughed when I first heard of it--but
here in India, where the rainfall is the prime condition of
existence to millions and the sun is much more powerful than with
us, the Meteorological Department has just reported that there is
apparently a sure connection between the rainfall and its
distribution and the spots upon the sun. When these spots are at
the minimum there is a tendency to prolonged excessive pressure
over the land and an unusual amount and irregular distribution of
rain.

  "There is blood upon the moon,"

still stands as a poetic expression; but "there are great spots
upon the sun" must pass as presaging famine. There seems to have
been an element of truth after all in "the signs of the heavens"
of the astrologer, only the great law which governs them was
unknown.

       *       *       *       *       *

THURSDAY, February 6.

We left Calcutta for the Hindoo Mecca, Benares, tonight, and had
our first experience of Indian railway travel, which proved to be
very comfortable. We had all to ourselves a first-class carriage
compartment containing two sofas lengthwise of the car and one
across; above these were three upper berths, to be let down, if
necessary, and used as beds. A smaller compartment contained
dressing-room, etc., for all of which there is no extra charge.
Evidently there is no field here for my enterprising friend Mr.
Pullman. Our route lay through the opium-growing district, and the
white poppies were just beginning to bloom. I did not know before
that only the white variety is grown, but, curiously enough, the
red flower is not nearly so productive. This set us to thinking
that there may, after all, be something in the Chinaman's
preference for a black dog to one of another color. By all means
let us have the two kinds analyzed and see whether the blood be
just the same. The opium question has given rise to much angry
discussion upon which we do not propose to pass an opinion. My
readers may safely assume, I think, that the difficulties we
encounter in restraining or abolishing the use of liquor among
ourselves, also surround the opium question in the East. It is
their liquor. China grows most of what she consumes, and I believe
would grow it all if the Indian drug was not admitted. Its
exclusion by the Chinese would not therefore seriously lessen its
use. Still it places England in a false position before the world
to enforce its admission by treaty stipulations. The sum involved
to the Indian revenue exceeds seven millions sterling per annum
($35,000,000); that is the net yearly profit made out of the
growth of the poppy. It would not all be lost, and perhaps not be
seriously reduced, were China free to exclude it, for large
quantities would be smuggled in, and the people would have it. I
wish England's hands were entirely free from all stain in
connection with this business. China should not be compelled by
England to admit a drug which is considered pernicious.

The total exports this year were ninety-one thousand chests,
valued at thirteen millions sterling, most of it to China. The
growing of the poppy is a government monopoly in the Bengal
province (Calcutta). Each year government enters into contracts
with cultivators to devote so many acres to its cultivation--an
advance upon the expected crops is made and final settlements at
the end of the season according to amount and quality produced.
The drug is extracted at two government factories. In the other
district, the produce of which passes through the Bombay
presidency, the cultivation of the plant is free, but a duty is
collected upon the opium.

We are in the dry season, and where not irrigated the vast plains
of India are parched. The soil is a light brown clay, and turns
readily to fine dust, which seems to blow over everything and make
all of one hue. Even the scanty muslin clothing of the people
becomes of this dusty color. The houses are only mud huts one
story high and roofed with coarse straw; an opening in one side
serves as a door, but with this exception the hovel is closed;
neither window nor chimney appears, and when fires are made the
smoke escapes through all parts of the roof, and when the roof is
closer than usual, through the door. This dusty, dirty mud color
of soil, streets, houses, dress, and people gives one an
impression of a more squalid poverty even than that of the
overcrowded Chinese in Shanghai. These latter have more clothing
and no dust, and their dirtiness seems a less objectionable form
of dirt.

One remarkable difference between these people and the Chinese is
that we never see the former eating, while the latter eat
frequently. I am told that the Indians have but two meals a
day--at noon and at eight in the evening, with a bite early in the
morning. As is well known, the Hindoos are strict vegetarians,
neither meat, fish, poultry, nor even eggs being allowed. The
result of a vegetable diet, if they are to be taken as a fair
example, is not such as to favor its general adoption. The
Mohammedans, on the other hand, eat everything but pork; like the
Jews, they forbid this one article, and I am informed that the
Mohammedans are a far sturdier race than their neighbors the
Hindoos; but they should be superior, as the advance from
Hindooism, with its numerous gods and idolatrous worship, to
Mohammedanism with its one god is an immense one. The claims which
Mohammed has upon the gratitude of mankind rest upon a solid
basis, for he it was who proclaimed to the East that there is but
one God, and announced himself as his prophet only, instead of
demanding that he himself should be worshipped as divine; but he
performed another great service, for he abolished the abominable
system of caste, and thus it comes that the most popular religion
in existence hails all its disciples, from the peasant to the
Sultan, as of one brotherhood, as Christianity does with hers.
There are nearly fifty millions of Mohammedans among the two
hundred and fifty millions of India's population, and it is to
them we must chiefly look for the regeneration of the native
races.

As we pass through the country we are surprised at the crowds of
gayly-dressed natives waiting at the crossings to pass the line,
and at the stations to take the trains. All the colors of the
rainbow are to be seen in their wraps. It is the season of
idleness just now, their two months of rest in the country, and
the entire population seem to be running about in holiday attire,
forming a striking contrast to their fellows in the towns, who sit
in their hovels hard at work, one crowding another in his seat.
Before England established free dispensaries for these masses the
rate of mortality must have been something incredible; even now it
is very high, although last year in the two provinces alone no
fewer than eleven hundred thousand patients were treated or
prescribed for by these institutions, which we rejoice to see
scattered throughout the country wherever we go. Nor in all her
illustrious record do we know a brighter page than that which
chronicles the rise and progress of these truly English
organizations.

Manufactures in India are not profitable at present: during the
scarcity of cotton, owing to the American war, large quantities
were grown here and fortunes made in the business; eventually
cotton mills were built in Bombay and jute mills in Calcutta,
which prospered for a time, but now that America, under the system
of free labor, has demonstrated her ability to supply cheaper and
better cotton than India, these enterprises languish. I counted
thirty-eight spinning and weaving companies in Bombay, and twenty-
one cotton-press companies; the shares of which were quoted in the
market, and found that on an average these would not command to-day
one-half the actual capital paid in. It is much the same with the
seven Calcutta jute companies. Cotton, both as to growth and
manufacture, in India, I believe has no future, save one contingent
upon the interruption of the American supply, of which there does
not appear much danger. But it must be borne in mind that the fall
in the value of silver so far is a direct gain to native productions.
The planter and manufacturer alike pay in the debased currency and
sell the product as far as it is exported for gold, upon which they
realize a handsome premium. America needs a continuance of low rates
for transportation to counterbalance this advantage of her Indian
rival.

       *       *       *       *       *

BENARES, Saturday, February 8.

We started from our hotel early this morning to see the Hindoos
bathing in the sacred waters of the Ganges. Benares is to the
pious Hindoo all that Mecca is to the good son of the Prophet, and
much more beside, and he esteems himself happy if it is vouchsafed
him to die in sight of this stream and this city. Pilgrims flock
here from all parts of India, and thousands are carried from long
distances, while dying, that their eyes may behold, ere they
close, the holy city of God. At the junction yesterday, six miles
out, we came upon our first band of pilgrims, for they now
patronize the rail freely, men and women, each with the inevitable
bundle of rags which serves as his bed _en route_ and as a
change of clothing, to be blessed by washing in the Ganges. It
requires about a month to worship at every temple and do all that
the priests persuade these pilgrims to be essential for their
salvation, every ceremony, of course, producing revenue for this
class. Each Rajah of India has his temple upon the bank of the
river, and it is these handsome structures, situated on the cliff
which overhangs the river, that give to Benares its unparalleled
beauty. In each temple a priest is maintained who prays constantly
and bathes every morning as a substitute for his master, the
Rajah, but the latter comes in person also for one month each year
to perform the sacred rites. We were fortunate this morning in
seeing the Rajah of Nepaul at his devotions. He has a small
covered boat of his own, and we found him on his knees, in front
of it, gazing upon the sun, as we pulled slowly past in our boat,
his staff standing behind him in reverential attitudes. For one
full month this intelligent ruler, who speaks English fluently and
is well informed of the views Europeans hold of his religious
ideas, will nevertheless work hard, visiting daily the temples,
going through various exercises, and bathing every morning in the
Ganges. One other Rajah is here, and others are shortly to come
and do likewise. It seems so strange that these men still remain
slaves to such superstitions; but how few among ourselves succeed
in rising beyond what we happen to have been taught in our
childhood! It is very different, I am told, with those who have
received English ideas in their youth at the government colleges.
They make quick work of the Hindoo idols; but so far every one
here agrees with the Rev. Dr. Field when he says: "It needs very
little learning to convince the Hindoo that his sacred books are a
mass of fable. But this does not make him a Christian. It only
lands him in infidelity, and leaves him there." The
_Encyclopedia Britannica_ says that "the progress of
Protestant missions amounts at present to almost nothing." In Dr.
Mullen's report, down to 1871, the "whole force of English
missionaries--579, and of native preachers, 1,993--had produced a
native Christian population of only 280,600. There was probably a
much larger number in the south of India about the middle of the
eighteenth century." I heard everywhere corroborations of this
statement.

The wife of the Rajah, we heard, had yesterday performed the most
sacred of all the ceremonies under conditions of considerable
popular excitement. The sacred well, the stairs leading from it to
the river, and the bathing place at the river, were all covered
in; the crowd could only see the sedan chair which carried the
queen to the well, but the spectacle attracted great numbers. This
well is simply a trench about twenty-five feet long and not more
than three feet wide, but it must be thirty feet below the
surface. Broad steps lead to it from all sides. In this well every
Hindoo of good caste is permitted to wash, and there are always
many in it. The water is foul and offensive, yet such is its
reputed sanctity that no sin can be committed so heinous that it
cannot be washed away by it. The ceremony, fortunately, is
incomplete until one, rising from its stench, walks to the pure
water of the Ganges and bathes there. I think the ceremony must
typify man before purification, foul with sin, and then cleansed
by bathing in the pure Jordan afterward; but no one could give me
any information upon this point. At all events it was into this
sink that the Rajah's wife bravely immersed herself yesterday, and
it is here, too, the Rajah himself must come before he
leaves--poor man!

The place where the dead are burned was pointed out as we drifted
past in our boat, but it was then unoccupied. As we returned,
however, one body was in the hands of the attendants, who had
taken it into the river and were just in the act of pouring the
sacred water down the throat preparatory to the final scene. One
woman alone sat on the shore weeping, and two small children at
her side seemed not to understand why. It was still early morning,
and all was quiet. Our guide pointed out some who were evidently
friends, in conversation with men on a parapet above. They were
bargaining for the sacred fire to light the funeral pile.
Government prohibits the burning of the forlorn widow with her
husband's body, as was formerly the custom, but it is said many
widows wish this privilege even yet, nor can I blame them much.
I'm sure I don't see why, beyond the mere instinct of self-
preservation, they should have a wish to live on. Those educated
people among us who commit suicide have prospects before them
which might be called blissful compared with what confronts poor
widows in India.

We visited the principal temples and shrines in succession, but I do
not propose to rehearse their names and special virtues. There is a
great sameness about them, but the Monkey Temple differs from the
others in having several hundred monkeys running over it in every
direction. Like the rest, this is owned by a number of people, and
its shares are marketable property. Dr. Lazarus, the chief of the
medical department, tells us that the "river people," a term
embracing those who own the temples on the stream--just as we would
say the "steel rail" or the "pig metal" people at home--are very
much depressed, complaining bitterly that the revenues have fallen
away. One owner in the Monkey Temple, probably the most prosperous
of all, had some time ago asked what this trouble meant. He was
advised to sell his monkey stock as soon as possible, but up to the
present day he has found no one willing to invest in the property.
One of the high priests of another sacred shrine said to my
informant that he had seen in his day three ages--one of gold, one
of silver, and now he had reached the age of copper, and was only
thankful when he saw a few pieces of that. "The people still come as
of old, to worship, which costs nothing," he said, "but they don't
pay the gods more than a pittance. I wonder what we are coming to?"
While great allowance has to be made for the changed condition of
affairs throughout the world, which has seriously affected the
revenues of religious establishments everywhere, and which India has
had to share, aggravated by the loss of her cotton industry, still
it can hardly be doubted that Hindooism as a vital force is
crumbling slowly to pieces, and that the priests are losing their
sway over the masses. Caste also goes slowly with the tide of
change, and Brahmans are now occasionally found taking employment
below that of their caste; and while a high-caste Hindoo some years
ago would have considered himself defiled if even the garments of a
low-caste person touched him, he now rushes into the same railway
compartment among the general crowd and struggles for a seat with
various castes, and says nothing about it. One stand the English
home Government took, in deference to English ideas as opposed to
those of the Anglo-Indian authorities, which alone dooms caste,
sooner or later, to extinction: it would not permit different
classes on the railways to be established for Hindoos or
Mohammedans, or for castes of the former. Many residents in India
feared that this would prevent the natives from using the lines, but
the result has wonderfully belied these fears and vindicated the
sagacity of those who ventured to inaugurate this system; and now
one sees Hindoos and Mohammedans, high caste and low caste, jostling
each other in their efforts to get desirable seats in the
third-class compartments, where, by the way, they travel for less
per mile than anywhere else in the world, third-class fares in India
being uniformly one-half of a cent per mile. First-class fares, with
such sleeping-car luxuries as I have before described included, are
just about our rates with sleeping-cars not included--viz., three
cents per mile.

While Hindooism is thus passing away, but little progress is made
with Islam. The fifty millions of Mohammedans stand to-day where
they have stood for ages, and cry from their mosques morning and
night, "There is but one God, and Mohammed is his prophet." No
idols, no drunkenness, no caste. The contrast between their faith
and that of Christians is therefore much less marked, and our
guide says to us, with evident pride, "Hindoos believe many gods,
worship idols. _I believe like you_, one God, no idols."

India is thus in a state of transition, her caste and religion
both passing away. The work before this generation and probably
the next is to pull down and destroy. It will remain for those who
come after to begin the more difficult labor of building up.

We met at Benares strings of water-carriers, carrying brass
vessels on each end of a pole borne over the shoulder. These come
here for hundreds of miles on foot, and take back to their
customers in the country the sacred water of the blessed river. It
is a regular business, and furnishes employment for thousands of
men. Upon no account must this water be carried by railway and
deprived of its healing powers by being handled by unbelievers. It
must be carried by Hindoos of the proper caste on foot, or it has
no virtue.

Science invades everything nowadays, and the officials have
recently had the water of one of the sacred wells analyzed by a
chemist--audacious dog of an infidel--and here he comes with his
CO2 and all the virtue of this water of life is gone. It is found
unfit for human use, and the well is ordered to be closed. The
chemist, in the eyes of the ignorant natives, has sacrificed
spiritual for physical health; preferred the welfare of their
bodies to that of their souls, as is the custom with these wicked
scientists.

We pass booths in which native jewellers sit hard at work
fashioning rings, brooches, and other articles of personal
adornment. Their dexterity is marvellous; without elaborate
appliances of any kind, with only a small blow pipe and a few rude
tools, they will take a gold coin from you and before your eyes
shape it into any form selected. But it is said they must have a
model to copy from; no original design emanates from them. The
booths, or little shops, are curious affairs. They are built of
mud, with neither window nor door, the floor on which the artisans
sit being about four feet above the narrow street level.

I never was more thoroughly impressed with the position of the
European of India than to-day when pushing through the crowded,
narrow lanes of Benares. Our native guide went before us carrying
a whip which he cracked and brandished among the crowd, calling
out "Sahib! Sahib!" and the people, casting one glance behind, at
once hurried out of our way, making a clear track for our august
person supposed to represent the conquering race. The respectful
salaams, as we caught the eye of one native after another, their
deferential, not to say obsequious, attitude as we passed--all
this tells its story. That "all men are born free and equal" will
not enter the Hindoo mind for centuries--not till England has
brought it up to the standard of self-government, which it is
gradually doing, however, by its schools and colleges.

Benares has been famous for centuries for its manufacture of gold
and silver embroideries. I remember that Macaulay speaks of them
in his essay on Warren Hastings as decorating alike the court of
Versailles and the halls of St. James. We went to the native
village and saw the work carried on. How such exquisite fabrics
come from the antiquated looms situated in mud hovels it is hard
to understand, but they do. We saw one man who had no less than
thirty-three different tiny spools to work from in a piece not
more than a yard wide. All of these he had in turn to introduce in
the web, and pass through a greater or lesser number of threads,
the one starting in where the other left the woof, before one
single thread was complete from end to end of the warp and could
be driven into the pattern. The people of Benares also excel as
workers in brass.

To-day we had a unique experience indeed, being carried through
the principal streets of Benares on State elephants, kindly
provided for us by the Rajah of Benares. Mr. H., of New York, whom
we have met on his way round the world, and Vandy and I were the
riders. We were driven to the palace, and found there two huge
animals, gayly caparisoned, awaiting our arrival, surrounded by
servants in resplendent liveries. The elephants very kindly got
upon their knees, which rendered a short ladder only necessary for
us to mount by. The motion is decidedly peculiar, and, until one
becomes used to it, I should think very fatiguing; but we enjoyed
our elephant ride greatly, and the Rajah has our hearty thanks.

We are in the land of the cheapest labor in the world. It is
doubtful if men can be found anywhere else to do a day's work for
as little as they are paid in India. Railway laborers and coolies
of all kinds receive only four rupees per month, and find
themselves; these are worth just now forty cents each, or, say,
$1.60 (6s. 6d.) in gold for a month's service. Upon
this a man has to exist. Is it any wonder that the masses are
constantly upon the verge of starvation? Women earn much less, and
of course every member of a family has to work and earn something.
The common food is a pulse called gran; the better class indulge
in a pea called daahl. Anything beyond a vegetable diet is not
dreamed of.

Before leaving Benares I must speak again of the scene at the
river, which far excels any representation I have seen of it or
any description I have read. Photographs cannot be made to convey
a just idea of its picturesque beauty, because the view is
enlivened by such masses and combinations of color as Turner alone
could do justice to. Indeed, my first thought as I saw the
thousands on the ascending banks--one tier of resting-places above
another, culminating in the grand temples' towering at the
tops--was that I had seen something akin to this in a dazzling
picture somewhere. Need I say that it is in the Turner Gallery
alone where such color can be seen? He should have painted the
"Hindoo Bathers at Benares," and given the world one more gem
revealing what he alone, in his generation, fully saw in the
mind's eye, "the light which never shone on sea or shore." We have
voted this scene at Benares the finest sight we have yet
witnessed.

       *       *       *       *       *

LUCKNOW, Tuesday, February 11.

We reached Lucknow at night. The moon was not yet shining, but the
stars shed their peaceful halo around this spot, to which the eyes
of the civilized world were so long directed during the dark days
of the mutiny. At the hotel upon arrival a lady's voice was heard
singing the universal refrain which nearest touches all English
hearts in India and expresses the ever dominant longing, "Home,
Sweet, Sweet Home."

There is no trace here of the massacres which have made this
region memorable. But is the past to be repeated? Who can assure
us that these bronzed figures which surround us by millions may
not again in some mad moment catch the fever of revolt? This is
the anxious question which I find intruding itself upon me every
hour. Truly it is a dangerous game, this, to undertake the
permanent subjection of a conquered race; and I do not believe
that after General Grant sees India he will regret that the
foolish Santo Domingo craze passed away. If America can learn one
lesson from England, it is the folly of conquest, where conquest
involves the government of an alien race.

Our first visit was to the ruins of the Residency, where for six
long months Sir Henry Lawrence and his devoted band were shut up
and surrounded by fifty thousand armed rebels. The grounds, which
I should say are about thirty acres in extent, were fortunately
encompassed by an earthen rampart six feet in height. You need not
be told of the heroic resistance of the two regiments of British
soldiers and one of natives, nor of the famous rescue. Hour after
hour, day after day, week after week, and month after month, the
three hundred women and children, shut in a cellar under ground,
watched and prayed for the sound of Have-lock's bugles, but it
came not. Hope, wearied out at last, had almost given place to
despair. Through the day the attacks of the infuriated mob could
be seen and repelled, but who was to answer that when darkness
fell the wall was not to be pierced at some weak point of the
extended line? One officer in command of a critical point
failing--not to do his duty, there was never a fear of that--but
failing to judge correctly of what the occasion demanded, and the
struggle was over. Death was the last of the fears of these poor
women night after night as the days rolled slowly away. One night
there was graver silence than usual in the room; all were
despondent, and lay resigned to their seemingly impending fate. No
rescue came, nor any tidings of relief. In the darkness one
piercing scream was heard from the narrow window. A Highland nurse
had clambered up to gaze through the bars and strain her ears once
more. The cooling breeze of night blew in her face and wafted such
music as she could not stay to hear. One spring to the ground, a
clapping of hands above the head, and such a shriek as appalled
her sisters who clustered round; but all she could say between the
sobs was: "The slogan--the slogan!" But few knew what the slogan
was. "Didna ye hear--didna ye hear?" cried the demented girl, and
then listening one moment, that she might not be deceived, she
muttered, "It's the Macgregors gathering, the grandest o' them
a'," and fell senseless to the ground. Truly, my lassie, the
"grandest o' them a'," for never came such strains before to
mortal ears. And so Jessie of Lucknow takes her place in history
as one of the finest themes for painter, dramatist, poet or
historian henceforth and forever. I have been hesitating whether
the next paragraph in my note-book should go down here or be
omitted. Probably it would be in better taste if quietly ignored,
but then it would be so finely natural if put in. Well, I shall be
natural or nothing, and recount that I could not help rejoicing
that Jessie was Scotch, and that Scotchmen first broke the rebels'
lines and reached the fort, and that the bagpipes led the way.
That's all. I feel better now that this is also set down.

Lucknow, so rich in historical associations, is poverty itself in
genuine architectural attractions, magnificent as it appears at a
distance. It is a modern capital. About a century ago a king of
Oude, in a moment of caprice, I suppose, determined to remove his
capital from Fyzabad to Lucknow. Palaces on a great scale were
hastily erected of common bricks and covered with white plaster.
These look very fine at a distance, but closer inspection reveals
the sham, and one is provoked because his admiration has been
unworthily excited. Several other kings followed and carried on
this imposture, each building his palace and tomb in this
untruthful way. What could we expect from kings content to lie in
such tombs but lives of disgusting dissipation? A simple marble
slab were surely better than these pretentious lies: anything so
it be genuine. However, retribution came, and the dynasty is
extinct, the present king living as a prisoner in Calcutta.

The bazaars of Lucknow are well worth seeing, with their native
jewellers, brass-workers, and other artificers, working in spaces
not more than six feet square. We begin to see persons and modes
which remind us of scriptural expressions--the water-carrier with
the goat-skin filled, "the hewers of wood and drawers of water,"
the latter usually working in gangs of five. An earthen incline is
built, leading up to the top of the wall which surrounds the well;
the well-rope passes over the shoulders of the drawers, and in
marching down the incline they raise the bucket. We came to-day
upon a lot of women grinding the coarse daahl. Two work at each
mill, sitting opposite one another, pushing around the upper stone
by means of upright handles fastened into it.

  "And two women shall be grinding at the mill, and one shall be
   taken and the other left,"

saith the Scriptures of old, but our coming revised and corrected
edition, I could not help hoping to-day, as I saw this picture for
the first time, will note an error, or at least intimate a doubt
of the correct translation of this passage; or, if not, the age
may require some commentator "more powerful than the rest" to
console us with the hope that while at the first call one was
indeed left, there would be a second, yea, and a third, a seventh,
and a seventy times seventh call, in one of which even she would
participate.

We have been this afternoon among the tombs of heroes--Lawrence
and Havelock, Banks and McNeil, Hodson and Arthur--men who fell in
the days of the mutiny. Lawrence's tomb is most touching from its
simplicity--a short record, no eulogy, only

  "Here lies Henry Lawrence,
   Who tried to do his duty."

"I have tried to do my duty," he said, as he breathed his last,
and this is all his tomb has to say of him; but isn't it enough?

One day in our drive we came upon our first elephant and our first
camel camp, hundreds of the latter and nearly two hundred of the
former being attached to the transportation department of the
army. They are said to perform work which could never be done by
other animals in this climate. Bullocks are the third class used
as carriers; these are taught to trot, and do trot well. I
remember one day in Ceylon one of them in a hackery gave us in the
mail coach quite a spirited race for a short distance, but it was
only to-day that I learned that camels are also so trained and
used as mail or despatch bearers where speed is necessary, and the
gait of a really good trained camel is said to be quite easy. If
development goes forward in this line, our posterity may be using
the camel in trotting matches with the horse. He would possess the
advantage over that favorite animal which the Chinaman has over
the European; he could go longer between drinks, and that counts
for much.

The quarters for troops at Lucknow are models; the officers'
quarters are surrounded and in some cases almost embowered by
vines and flowers; lawn-tennis courts, cricket grounds, ball
courts, and a gymnasium are provided for the private soldiers, and
are finer than we have seen elsewhere, and serve to make Lucknow,
with its beautiful gardens and long shady avenues, the one really
pretty rural spot we have seen in India.

       *       *       *       *       *

WEDNESDAY, February 12.

We are on our way to Agra by rail, and expect to arrive in time to
drive out and see the Taj by moonlight. I have been reading more
carefully than before some descriptions of it, and keep wondering
whether this gem of the world is to prove a disappointment or not.
Most things which have been heralded like the Taj fail to fulfil
expectations at first, and how can stone and lime be so formed as
to justify such fulsome praises as have been bestowed upon this
tomb? One writer, for instance, exclaims, "There is no mystery, no
sense of partial failure about the Taj. A thing of perfect beauty
and of absolute finish in every detail, it might pass for the work
of genii, who knew naught of the weakness and ills with which
mankind were afflicted." The exact and prosaic Bernier had to
express doubts whether "I may not be somewhat infected with
'Indianisme,' but I must needs say I believe it ought to be
reckoned amongst the wonders of the world." Bayard Taylor exhausts
eulogy upon the Pearl Mosque, calling it "a sanctuary so pure and
stainless, revealing so exalted a spirit of worship, that I felt
humbled as a Christian that our noble religion had never inspired
its architects to surpass this temple to God and Mohammed;" but
when he comes to the Taj itself he is lost in rapture. There is
nothing, however, which the critics--those men who have failed in
literature and art--will not venture to attack, and I thought it
advisable to tone down my expectations by taking a dose of carping
criticism. Unfortunately for me, however, when I had got fairly in
with a writer who assures me "the design is weak and feeble," the
"shadows are much too thin," this misleader left me in a worse
condition than ever, for succumbing at last to the sweet
overpowering charms of the structure as a whole, and apparently
ashamed of himself for ever having dared to say one word against
its perfections, he adds--just after he had bravely done the
"design" and the "shadows"--"but the Taj is like a lovely woman:
abuse her as you please, the moment you come into her presence you
submit to her fascinations." Pretty criticism this for one who
wishes the faults of this beauty clearly set forth! I put this
lover of the Taj aside at once and try another writer, who does
indeed give me a page of preventive, well suited to one in my
condition, but upon turning over the page he too falls sadly away,
for here is his last line:

  "The rare genius of the calm building finds its way unchallenged
   to the heart."

Well, then, gentlemen, if all this be so, what's the use of your
petty criticism? If this marvel, before whose spell all men, even
you yourselves, must bow, has a "rigidity of outline," an "air of
littleness and luxury," a "poverty of relief," and if "the inlaid
work has been vulgarly employed," and the patterns are "meagre in
the extreme," wasn't it the highest aim that its builder could
probably have had in view, to entrance the world and give to it a
thing of beauty which is indeed a joy forever? and doesn't the Taj
do this so far beyond all other human structures that no one
thinks of naming another in comparison? And should not this
incontrovertible fact teach you a lesson--just a little bit of
modesty? No, gentlemen; it isn't the Taj that must be changed,
either in its outline or shadows, to conform to your canons of
criticism, but your canons of art that must be changed to embrace
the Taj, or rather to set it apart, as a stroke of original
genius, and consequently above and beyond the domain of criticism;
for criticism, like science, works solidly only upon what is
absolutely known, formulating its fixed decrees upon the past. All
great geniuses have encountered the critics of their day. How
Shakespeare violated the unities! and didn't Napoleon win battles
which he should have lost? Let these people then be silent, and
know that when a transcendent exhibition of original genius wins
success beyond the reach of measurement by their plumb and line
and square and compass, the higher law governing the seeming
miracle will be duly revealed: and the Taj is just such a miracle,
from all I can learn of its power.

The evidences of the intense summer heat are seen everywhere. The
railway carriages have false tops, leaving an air space of a foot
between the roof and the cover. Awnings cover the windows outside,
and there are posted up directions for the use of the cooling
apparatus applied to each first-class compartment; the frames for
punkas are seen in the railway waiting-rooms, and we notice in the
army regulations that during the hot season soldiers are required
to stay in-doors between the hours of eleven and three. We are
told of revolving fans being used to cool rooms, and that it is
very common to fill doors and windows with thick mats of scented
grass, which are kept constantly wet; the wind, passing through
these, is cooled to about ninety degrees, and large banana leaves
furnish a cool bed in extreme cases, from all of which, "Good
Lord, deliver us!" We thank our stars every day that we are doing
India when the heat, though great at midday, is not unbearable. We
are five hundred and fifty miles north of Calcutta, and find the
temperature much cooler. The people look stronger, and necessarily
wear more clothing, which means that another piece of coarse
bagging is wrapped around their shoulders. We are at the best
hotel in Agra, and I notice as remarkable, in the printed list of
prices, that a man to pull the punka in one's bedroom
 all night can be obtained for the sum of three annas, or six
cents in silver. Washing costs two cents per piece, but while
these strike us as cheap, the next item tells us that each guest
during the hot season is chargeable with twenty cents per day for
ice used at table etc. It is very sparingly used, but yet the
little bit of ice you see costs as much as the labor of three men
all night. All the employees of the railways in India are required
to join the volunteer forces, and to drill under the supervision
of regular army officers, appointed by the government for this
purpose. An excellent auxiliary force numbering many thousands is
thus secured at trifling expense. One significant announcement
posted at stations attracted my attention, and gave me an insight
into one department in which India is in advance of us. This
placard set forth that certain employees having been found under
the influence of liquor while on duty, the district court had
sentenced them to six months' imprisonment. This betokens a
decided step forward, I take it, and one which it would be
advisable for us to follow. A captain, pilot, engineer, railway
conductor, or any one directly charged with the care of human
lives convicted of being drunk while on duty should be held guilty
of a criminal offence and punished by the State.

I have been admiring all through India three magnificent vines,
now in full bloom. One, the Begonia, resembles our honeysuckle,
but the flower is larger and hangs in large clusters; the second,
called the Bouganviella, is purple in color and like our morning-
glory, and the two are often seen climbing together up tall trees
almost to their very tops, covering them with a mass of flowers.
The third favorite, Poinsetta, is a leaf of rich magenta color.
These three are the special glories of India. Some of our own
flowers do tolerably well in this region, and the inherent love of
the English for flowers and plants is seen in the numerous pretty
plots and gardens.

Life in India is only rendered tolerable by the opportunity people
have to enjoy things which would be beyond their reach at home
without fortunes. All residences have grounds connected with them,
more or less extensive, and laid out in fine gardens. Lawn-tennis
and croquet grounds are the rule. Horses and carriages, or at
least a vehicle of some kind, are indispensable, and no one who
strolls around the European quarters in early morning and sees the
large staff of servants lounging about the spacious verandas,
awaiting the call of "Sahib" or "Mem Sahiba," can be at a loss to
account for the disappointment often experienced by those who,
after years of longing, at last go home to enjoy themselves in
their fancied Elysium. Alas! ten times the sum that supports them
here in style would not suffice in England. Here Sahib awakes and
drawls out, "Qui hi" (you of my people who are in waiting). There
is a stir among several servants who have lain the whole night
long at his door, to be in readiness, and the moaning reply comes,
"S-a-h-i-b," and he is surrounded by those who minister to his
slightest wish all day, leaving him again at night only to repeat
the performance on the morrow. When he drives his gig to town one
servant stands at his back to wait upon him, and Madame appears in
the afternoon upon the Mall in her grand equipage, two on the box
and two standing behind, as if she were a duchess. As a European
walks the streets he is salaamed by every native he chances to
look at. He moves about, one of a superior race and rank. As he
approaches a crowd, to look at a passing sight, a clear lane is
made for him; and if he steps into the post-office to ask for
letters, the natives instinctively fall back until Sahib is
served. All this spoils a man for residence at home, where "one
man is as good as another and a good deal better," unless a
tremendous fortune is at one's back to purchase precedence, which
nowadays is scarcely obtainable at any price even in England where
traces of by-gone days linger longest: and so it falls out that
many who have prayed for long years for the day to come for their
return to England, find the coveted change but Dead Sea fruit when
it is gained at last. A few even return to the land they had so
long prayed to be allowed to leave, and take up their final abode
among the hills. For these people I cannot help feeling deeply
sorry. It is impossible that their lives can be full and rich to
overflowing here. A tone of sadness, of vain regret, must pervade
the mind. The prize so ardently struggled for has been found
unsatisfactory, and at best their lives must draw to a close
tinged by a sense of partial failure.

How many human beings can the land maintain to the square mile?
About three hundred and fifty in Europe say the authorities,
provided the soil is fertile and climate good. This is close upon
the English and Belgian standard; but some parts of India are
cursed with more than double this number; indeed one district has
nearly eight hundred to the square mile. This seems to be the
limit even for India, as population does not increase beyond it,
and female infanticide begins to protrude its monstrous form
whenever population becomes so dense. In the Punjaub, for
instance, the males exceed the females sixteen per cent.--a
fearful revelation; but it is just the same in many parts of
China. All authorities agree that male children are tenderly cared
for, and even desired. This is especially so in China, for no
greater evil can befall a Chinaman than the absence of sons to
keep unbroken the worship. of ancestors. Death is nothing if he
passes away with dutiful sons around his bedside ready to perform
the sacred rites. To die without these is to send his soul forth a
wanderer without claims upon his gods. The commercial aspect,
however, has mostly to do with the question in India. Where is
food for the little mouths, to come from, and how can a girl be
reared by a family who live from day to day upon the brink of
starvation, even when every member labors like a slave?

One morning we drove to the jail--one of the sights of India--and
were fortunate in meeting the Inspector-General, Mr. Walker, an
authority on all matters relating to prison discipline, and Dr.
Tyler, the Chief for Agra. These officials kindly conducted us
through the vast establishment. The prison labor is not, as
generally with us, contracted out--a vicious plan which
necessitates the intercourse of outsiders with the criminals and
invariably leads to bad results. Here the prisoners deal with none
but their keepers; but what pleased me most was the admirable
system of rewards and promotions for good conduct which has been
established. Marks are given and worn upon the clothes which
shorten one's sentence from one day up to several, and it is
possible for a prisoner in this way to acquire marks enough to
take as much as one tenth from his imprisonment. The best behaved
of all can rise to the position of wardens. Several hundreds have
reached this prize, and are distinguished by better clothing, and
also by ornamental badges. These wardens are placed over the other
malefactors, and there is no difficulty experienced in enforcing
the strictest discipline through them. Foremen of shops and of the
various departments are all appointed from among the prisoners
themselves, and, with the exception of the one in charge of the
complicated machinery, there are no others employed in such
capacities. The armed guards are, however, not of this class. In
ordinary years the cost of maintenance per person is one rupee a
month (40 cents gold); clothing 75 cents a year, including cost of
supervision and all expenses of the jail department; prisoners in
India thus cost only about $14 per year each. This prison
maintains itself by the labor of its inmates, and last year showed
an actual profit of about $40,000. Twenty-three hundred prisoners
were confined within its walls when we were there. The total
number of inmates of the jail in this and the Northwest Province
is just now 39,000; but last year, owing to the famine, the number
rose to 42,000. This seems a great number, but I am informed that,
taking the population into account, it is not quite up to the
average in England. We saw the prisoners working the celebrated
Agra jail carpets and rugs, for which there is such demand that
orders given to-day cannot be filled for many months. A new
building has just been erected and filled with looms to increase
the supply. Native dyes and materials alone are used, and one can
thus rest assured that a carpet obtained here is genuine
throughout. France takes the finest qualities, and we saw some so
fine that the day's task of men sitting as close as they could the
entire width of the web was only one inch per day. These carpets,
which are really works of art, cost here $10 gold per square yard,
and certainly not less than double that when retailed in Paris. Of
the inmates about one hundred were women, their special crime
being that of child-stealing, which is very common in India, the
ornaments worn by the little ones being a strong temptation. We
saw two young lads sentenced for life for this crime. They had
stolen and robbed a child, and afterward thrown the body into a
well. We left Messrs. Walker and Tyler strongly imbued with the
feeling that we had seen the model prison of the world in Agra
jail.

India gives us valuable hints upon the land question. There is no
private tenure; at least it is not general, for when one speaks of
a continent with two hundred and fifty millions of people
possessed of different customs it is unsafe to say that anything
does not exist. Speaking generally, the land of India belongs to
village communities in which every family has its right. The State
first taxes a certain portion of the produce. Akbar the first
Mogul fixed it at one-third of the gross amount, which the head
man of each village was required first to set apart for
government. The remainder was divided among the community. For
untold generations these village communities have preserved intact
their traditions, which neither anarchy nor conquest have
abolished. Unfortunately the English in the early days were
disposed to introduce their system of landlord and tenant, and in
the Bengal province this has led to infinite trouble. Men had
arisen there who undertook the collection of the land tax of a
district and paid the government an agreed-upon sum. They were in
fact contractors (Zemindars); this was certainly the easiest mode
for the British Government to obtain the revenue, but in
recognizing these contractors it raised them virtually to the
position of landlord. The poor cultivator could not reach the
government at all. He was in the power of the Zemindar, who alone
dealt with the authorities. As was to have been expected, the
result was just as it has been found in Ireland. The Zemindars
squeezed every penny out of the poor farmer which he could be made
to yield, until finally the government was compelled to embark
upon that perilous sea, land legislation, tenant rights, judicial
rents, and all the rest of it.

In the Bombay presidency, however, wiser councils have prevailed.
The cultivator deals directly with the government; has a lease as
it were subject to revaluation every thirty years. In time the
poor cultivator will no doubt rise to the advantages of this
system by a process of natural selection. It was certain that many
unfit occupiers would be found, and this has been the case so far.
The plan is bound, however, to develop and sustain the most
competent, and this means that it is the right plan. The land
yields the government twenty-two millions sterling per annum
($110,000,000). Had the land owners of England not released
themselves while acting as M. P.'s of the tax under which till
then land was held by them, England would be in position to-day to
remit many taxes which bear heavily upon the people.

We had a talk to-day with an officer of the forest department of
India, which vainly strives to save the forests from wandering
tribes who practice nomadic agriculture, reaping indeed where they
sow, but rarely sowing twice in the same place, which is the
difficulty. These tribes inhabit the hills of India, and depend
for food solely upon crops grown in the forests. They make a
clearing by burning the timber and scatter the seed, rarely taking
the trouble to turn up the soil, although some tribes scratch the
surface with sticks. The virgin soil yields forty and fifty fold of
rice as a first crop. This is gathered and off go the gypsies to
another locality for next season. The destruction of timber upon
these small clearings is nothing, as our friend explained, compared
to that caused by the spread of the fires. The government imposes
heavy penalties upon these nomads, if discovered, but vast, tracts
remain where no restraint is possible. He was on his way to solitude
among the hills, which he preferred to even the plains with their
crowds. But England, England some day! was his dream. Ah, poor
fellow! the chances are that he will fall and lie in his Indian
forest; or, sadder yet, should fortune reach him and he realize his
dream, that he would find life in England intolerable and return to
die here a disappointed man. We have met several such, and for no
class am I so profoundly sorry. Never to realize one's life dream is
bad enough, but to have it sent you and then find it naught--that
seems to me the keenest thrust which can enter the soul of man.

Among the attractions of Agra are the palaces and tombs of the
Great Moguls, and we have been busy visiting them day after day.
This was the capital during the most brilliant period of that
extraordinary family's reign. The founder, Baber, lies buried at
Cabool, which was the chief place before the invaders penetrated
farther south. Six of these Moguls reigned, and no dynasty in
history has six consecutive names of equal power to boast.
Hereditary genius has strong support in the careers of these
illustrious men; besides this, Baber was a lineal descendant of
Tamerlane himself, on his father's side, and of a scarcely less
able Tartar leader on his mother's side. So much for blood.

The greatest of the six was Akbar, who proved to be that rare
combination, soldier and statesman in one. He, Mohammedan by
birth, dared to marry a Hindoo princess as an example for his
people to follow, but which, unfortunately, they have failed to
do. It is strange to remember that the Moguls were seated on their
thrones only three hundred years ago, Akbar being contemporaneous
with Henry VIII., and ruling India when Shakespeare was still on
earth.

Six successive generations of great men, like the Great Moguls,
cannot be matched, I think, elsewhere; but it would not be fair to
attribute this unbroken line altogether to the doctrine of
hereditary genius. Much lies in the fact that upon each of these
rulers in turn, depended the maintenance and success of his
empire. The Moguls were real powers, indeed the only powers, and
not only reigned but governed. Had the doctrine of the divine
right of kings been overthrown in India during the reign of even
the ablest of the six, and the heir to the throne been debarred
the exercise of power; taught from his infancy that his role was
to be wholly ornamental, a sham king whose chief end and use was
the opening of fancy bazaars or the laying of foundation stones,
he too would have developed into something suited for the purpose
in view, just as heirs apparent have done elsewhere. It was the
continual exercise of high functions which made the race great and
kept it so. To _play_ the part of king when one knows himself
the political valet of his prime minister, would soon have taken
manhood out of Akbar himself, if we can imagine such a man willing
to play the part.

I am not going to give a catalogue of what is to be seen in Agra,
having no notion of writing a guide-book or of filling notes with
long passages from such sources, as I see many writers have done;
but I must speak of three or four structures which have pleased me
most.

The "Fort" is a most impressive pile of masonry, a Warwick Castle
upon a large scale, the ramparts being one and a quarter miles in
circumference. This was Akbar's principal palace, or rather series
of palaces, for it embraces the Pearl Mosque, Public Audience
Hall, and Jessamine Tower, all of which are within its walls.

The tomb of her father, built by that rare woman, Noor Mahal, she
who sleeps in the Taj, is a marble structure of exquisite
proportions, and quite unlike others because of the great number
and extent of the perforated screens of marble of which it is
principally composed. Up to the time we had seen this I think I
liked it the best of any; but then Noor Mahal had built it for her
father, and I was predisposed to like this proof of her filial
devotion.

There is one romantic and perfect love story concerning her in the
annals of the Moguls. Akbar's son, the future ruler, fell
desperately in love with a young lady, but for reasons of state
she was not eligible, and the emperor quietly provided a husband
for her in the person of one of his generals. The young heir only
knew that she was married and he condemned to take to wife the
woman provided for him. Two years after he had become emperor the
husband of his first love died, and although she was then a
middle-aged woman, he, the emperor, sought her out and not only
married her (she could have been his slave), but raised her to the
throne with himself, stamping her image with his own upon the coin
of the realm. Such an unbounded influence did this capable and
high-spirited woman acquire over not only her devoted husband but
the circle of the court, that she became the constant adviser in
all important affairs; and that she might not be less thoroughly
feminine, I am glad to see it recorded that she introduced
improved modes of dress and manners among her ladies. The emperor
told his priests one day that until he had married this paragon he
had not known what marriage meant. But her grandest achievement is
yet to be told. The emperor had previously been dissolute,
probably from his first pure dream of love having been so cruelly
dispelled--who knows?--but Noor Mahal lifted him into higher
regions, and made him a better man. She loved him fervently, and,
on more than one occasion, when the emperor was attacked, she
imperilled her own life to save his. As they grew old they became
more and more to each other, and at her death was it any wonder
the emperor ordered that a tomb should rise excelling all previous
tombs as much, if possible, as Noor Mahal excelled all other
women? This tomb, the Taj Mahal (Diadem Tomb), is said to have
cost more than two millions sterling, which is equal to an
expenditure of fifty millions of dollars with us to-day. Truly a
costly monument, you say. No doubt, but if it has given to mankind
one proof that the loftiest ideal can be wrought out and realized
in practice, the Taj would be cheap even if its erection had
emptied the Comstock lode; and there are men--wise men too--who
affirm that it performs this miracle and inspires them with the
pleasing hope that in the far ages yet to come the real and the
ideal may grow closer together. The emperor built no tomb for
himself, as was customary, but as the kind fates decreed, he was
placed side by side with her who had been to him so much, and they
rest together, under the noblest canopy ever made by human hands.
Taking into account the degraded position accorded to women, and
remembering to what Noor Mahal raised herself, I think she must be
allowed to rank as the greatest woman who ever reigned, and
perhaps the greatest who ever lived, for no one has climbed from
such a depth to such a height as she, as far as I know. Assuming
that Cleopatra was all that Shakespeare has made her for us, a
human being of whom it could be truly said

  "Age cannot wither nor custom stale her infinite variety,"

yet the Egyptian was born to the purple, a queen recognized by her
nation, and entitled to rule from the first. What was this
general's daughter in India? A woman, to begin with, which in
India meant an inferior being, and yet she rose to equality with
the Mogul and was consulted upon affairs of state--not simply
because she was, in a bad sense, the ruler's favorite, but by the
inherent force of her own abilities.

Akbar's Tomb amazes one by its gigantic size, which dwarfs all
other tombs. The amount of inlaid work, composed of jasper,
carnelian, and other precious stones, seen at every step, inclines
one to believe that it cost the fabulous sum stated. It should be
remembered that it was the custom among these monarchs always to
erect during their lives a palace in which great ceremonies took
place while they lived, and which became their tomb at their
death. A similar custom prevailed in Egypt, where each ruler began
a pyramid when he began his reign. It was in this way that so many
splendid structures were built. Akbar did not live to see this
vast building completed, but his son carried on the work. The
stern simplicity of Akbar's tomb, which is in the centre of the
building and under ground, pleased me. It is a plain solid block
of marble, without one word upon it, or mark of any kind; as if it
would say to all time, What need to tell the world that the great
Akbar lies here?

Speaking generally, the palaces and tombs of Agra are far finer
than I had imagined them to be, and the relief experienced in
getting away from the plaster shams of Lucknow--cheap
magnificence, to genuine grandeur at Agra--can be easily imagined.

Our train having been delayed in reaching Agra, we had arrived too
late to visit the Taj by moonlight; and in deference to the strong
remonstrance of every one we have met here, we have not yet
attempted to see the wonder. "Oh! don't think, please don't think
of seeing the Taj until the very last, because, if you do, every
thing else will seem so coarse," has been in substance the
exclamation of every friend. But now we are through with all else,
and we start, two o'clock P.M., February 14th, 1879. Vandy has
just come to announce that our carriage is ready. Good-bye! Am I
to be disappointed? Of course I am. I have made up my mind to
that, and having just had tiffin, and drank a whole pint of bitter
beer, I feel myself quite competent to criticise the Taj with the
best of them, and especially well fitted just now to stand no
nonsense. We met an American who was travelling as a matter of
duty, and had found, as far as travel was concerned, I suspect,
that he belonged to the class represented by the grumbler in
paradise, whose "halo didn't fit his head exactly." He had found
nothing in India, he said, but a lot of rubbish, but checked
himself at once, "except the Taj. Now that building--that
is--perfectly satisfactory," as if he had ordered a suit of
clothes from his tailor and had nothing to find fault with. On the
other hand, I have just come across a statement "that stern men,
overpowered by the sight of it, have been known to burst into
tears." It is this miracle of inanimate matter we are now to see.
But here comes Vandy again. "Come on, Andrew; carriage waiting."
I'm off--particulars in our next.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY NIGHT, February 14.

We have seen it, but I am without the slightest desire to burst
into rapturous adjectives. Do not expect me to attempt a
description of it, or to try to express my feelings. There are
some subjects too sacred for analysis, or even for words, and I
now know that there is a human structure so exquisitely fine, or
unearthly, as to lift it into this holy domain. Let me say little
about it; only tell you that, lingering until the sun went down,
we turned in the noble gateway which forms a frame through which
you see the Taj in the distance, with only the blue sky in the
background, around and above it, and there took our last fond sad
farewell, as the shades of night were wrapping the lovely jewel in
their embrace, as if it were a charge too sweetly precious not to
be safely enveloped in night's black mantle, till it could again
shine forth at the dawn in all its beauty to adorn the earth. Full
in its face we gazed. How kindly it seemed to look upon us! And as
one parts for the last time from one whose eye glistens at his
glance, we turned never to look upon the Taj again, hiding our
eyes as the carriage rolled away, lest by any mischance a partial
view should intrude to mar the perfect image our mind has grasped
to tarry with us forever. We had been so deliciously sad, and at
the same time so thrillingly but yet so solemnly happy for hours,
and now came pain alone, the inevitable finale to all our joys on
earth--the parting forever. But till the day I die, amid mountain
streams or moonlight strolls in the forest, wherever and whenever
the mood comes, when all that is most sacred, most elevated, and
most pure recur to shed their radiance upon the tranquil mind,
there will be found among my treasures the memory of that lovely
charm--the Taj.

We had engaged to meet some friends at the club as we drove
homeward, but was it any wonder that neither of us remembered this
until the stoppage of the carriage at our hotel awoke us from our
reveries! What was to be done? Vandy's reply expressed our
condition exactly: "Go out to enjoy myself when I feel that I want
to go and put on mourning! I couldn't do it." And we didn't. Our
friends will please accept this intimation.

In reading these pages at home so long after the visit one can
bring one's self to be a little prosaic in regard to this marvel,
and tell his readers just what the Taj is. As before stated, it is
the structure erected by the Emperor Jehanghir in memory of that
paragon Noor Mahal. That a tomb should be erected at all for a
woman in India is of itself significant, to begin with, and the
Roman Emperor who put his horse's head upon the coin and who is
supposed to have consulted him in political affairs did not take a
much wider departure from custom than did this true lover when he
put upon the coin a woman's image with his own.

The Taj is built of a light creamy marble, so that it does not
chill one as pure cold white marble does. It is warm and
sympathetic as a woman. One great critic has finely called the Taj
a feminine structure. There is nothing masculine about it, says
he; its charms are all feminine. This creamy marble is inlaid with
fine black marble lines, the entire Koran in Arabic letters, it is
said, being thus interwoven.

The following description is condensed from Fergusson: The
enclosure, which includes an inner and an outer court, the whole
about a fifth of a mile wide, extends along the banks of the Jumna
River one-third of a mile. The principal gateway, opening into the
inner court, is a hundred and forty feet high by a hundred and ten
feet wide. The mausoleum stands in the centre of a raised marble
platform, eighteen feet high, and exactly three hundred and
thirteen feet square. At each angle of this terrace rises a
minaret, a hundred and thirty-three feet high, and of exquisite
proportions, "more beautiful, perhaps," says Ferguson, "than any
other in India." The mausoleum itself is a square of one hundred
and eighty-six feet, with the corners cut off to the extent of
about thirty-four feet. In the centre is the principal dome,
fifty-eight feet in diameter, and eighty feet high, and at each
angle is a smaller dome surmounting a two-story apartment, about
twenty-seven feet in diameter.

The light to the central apartment is admitted through double
screens of white marble trellis-work of the most exquisite
designs. In any climate but that of India this would produce
darkness within, but here, in a building constructed wholly of
white marble, it serves to temper the glare of the blinding light.
No words can express the chastened beauty of that dim religious
light, the unearthly effect of the subdued sunshine, sparkling now
and then upon the brilliant stones of which the graceful mosaics,
vines and flowers are composed. Twenty thousand workmen are said
to have been employed upon this marvel for twenty-two years. I
would think the time and labor and money bestowed upon it well
spent had it been twenty times--aye, a hundred times--as great.
There is no price too dear to pay for perfection.

The mosaics of the interior are exquisitely graceful. Flowers and
fruits are represented by precious stones, formerly genuine
stones, but these having been stolen by the Jats and others, have
been replaced by glass, colored to represent the originals. In the
centre of the dome lie Noor Mahal and Jehanghir side by side, this
being, I believe, the only instance where any emperor of India has
condescended to be buried by the side of a woman. The sweetest
echo in the known world answers a call at the side of this tomb.
Of course the architect could not have had this attraction in view
when he planned the structure, and the natives who throng this
unique gem of architecture do well to ascribe this apparent voice
from heaven to the continual presence and approval of the good
gods who like to linger over the tomb of true lovers.

The guide steps forward without a word of warning and raises the
cry, "Great is God, and Mohammed is his prophet! Allah! Allah!" At
first three distinct musical notes are heard in the echo; I mean
different notes upon the musical scale, as distinct from each
other as "do, sol, do." These reverberate round the dome and
ascend until they reach the smaller dome, where they reunite and
escape from the temple as one tone. Some readers may recall the
echo in the baptistery at Pisa, as we did when we heard this new
delight in the Taj, but that echo compares with this, well, say as
the Taj compares to Milan Cathedral--and now I repent me for
comparing the Taj to any other material structure. It is not
proper to do so. We shall say as the piano compares with the
organ.

If I am ever sentenced to hard labor for life for some unlawful
outburst of my wild republicanism, I will make one request as I
throw myself upon the mercy of the court: Let me be transported to
India, and allowed to perform my daily task in beautifying and
preserving the Taj. This would be a labor of love, and I should
not be unhappy with my idol to worship, doing my part to hand it
down untarnished to future generations.

The Taj is really a very large temple, yet such is its grace, its
exquisite proportions, its unapproachable charm--it never occurs
to the beholder that it is of such great size. It is neither big
nor little, nor heavy nor light--it is simply perfect. You can't
tell why it is perfect, and you don't want to. You stand and look
at the gem through the great gateway which serves as a frame for
the picture, for the Taj is directly in front of the arch,
probably five hundred yards distant. A narrow walk, lined on both
sides with the choicest Indian plants, leads to it, but it is many
minutes before you can be induced to advance. Never before have
you gazed upon stone and lime which you deemed worthy of being
called beautiful. All you have seen becomes mean, coarse,
material; this alone is entirely worthy. There is grace and beauty
brought down to us from above, the realization of the ideal; it
really seems an inspiration. Vandy and I separated instinctively
without a word. You want to be with the Taj alone, for it leads
you captive and invites to secret communion. I wandered around
many hours, gazing at every turn, deliciously, not joyously happy;
there was no disposition to croon over a melody, nor any bracing
quality in my thoughts--not a trace of the heroic--but I was
filled with happiness which seemed to fall upon me gently as the
snow-flakes fall, as the zephyr comes when laden with sweet odors.
I sat down at length in the garden in full view of the Taj, but
had not rested long before an Englishman approached, and something
in our faces telling that we were both in the blissful state and
the worshipful mood, he came and sat down quietly, without
speaking a word, but with a slight and slow nod of recognition,
and broke out without one word of introduction--partly as if
talking to himself--as follows:

"I stayed away from this in England as long as I could. It is seven
years since I was here before. I have been here for two weeks
wandering about the grounds; I must tear myself away to-morrow and
my great grief is, that I know that I cannot take and carry with me
a perfect image--of _that_--and so I may have to return again." I
said that my feeling was the reverse, for I felt that its image
could never leave me. He envied me that, he said. I have often
regretted that I did not get the name and address of this worthy
devotee, but under the spell of the spirit neither he nor I cared
much for other companionship; but should this ever meet his eye
surely he will address me and perhaps we may shake hands in silence
over the memory of our idol.

It began to grow dark at length, and I thought of finding Vandy to
tell him--for no apology seemed necessary--that I could not
possibly resist the spell which had carried me away even from him
all the afternoon. I was at once relieved, for I found him in the
archway. He was first to speak. "A. C.," he said, "I'm very sorry.
I know I ought to have looked for you long ago, but really I could
not leave this spot. Look! there is no place like this." So it was
all right. When one is called upward by the spirit, even the
dearest of humanity must be left behind. But Vandy was in the
right place certainly for one to take his farewell. If ever an
inanimate object spoke to man, the Taj did to me when I said
farewell; the tear was not alone in the eye of the beholder as he
took his last fond look, for that spiritual face of the Taj seemed
to beam kindly in return. It said--yes, smile, reader, if you
will--I know it said, "This is not farewell, for we understand
each other." There never is a farewell between souls completely
sympathetic. They live forever in the bonds of a sacred friendship
which separation cannot break.

       *       *       *       *       *

DELHI, Sunday, February 16.

Delhi at last--he Rome of Asia! Baber established his capital in
Agra, a hundred and forty miles south, and therefore farther into
India, but his son Humayun returned to Delhi because the summer
heats of Agra were found to be insupportable. But it had before
been the principal seat of the Pathans or Afghan kings, and, back
of them, of several Hindoo dynasties. There are ruins of palaces
and forts here dating to one hundred years before Christ, and for
eighteen hundred years we have the ruins of the structures of the
kings of Delhi and their most noted subordinates, comprising prime
ministers, favorite slaves, barbers, architects, etc. For eleven
miles along the Imperial Way, on both sides, these ruins stretch,
ending in the Kuttub Minar, the glory of Delhi, as the Taj is of
Agra. This is a tower standing alone, two hundred and forty feet
in height, fifty feet in diameter at the base, and tapering to
nine feet at the top. But pictures and photographs have made all
familiar with this superb monument. It and the tomb of Humayun,
father of the great Akbar, alone remain vividly impressed upon my
memory. A ruin now and then is acceptable, but eleven miles of
them in one or two days are rather embarrassing, and it is
impossible to examine them in detail and retain interest in the
work; besides this, a great similarity pervades the mass. It seems
to me the entire population must have been oppressed to the last
degree, and every surplus penny secured in some way to be expended
in the erection and maintenance of these palaces, and for the
support of the classes who occupied them.

One most important department of government in the management of a
conquered race is that of its police and intelligence bureau, and
this is admirably administered in India. A special department was
organized years ago, and specially gifted officers of the army
placed at its head. To the present chief, Major Henderson, whose
face we see in all the photographs of the Prince of Wales's party,
we are deeply indebted for Indian items. This department has
almost succeeded in stamping out the Thugs, and it is very seldom
that murders are now committed by these religious fanatics. Their
goddess Kali demanded blood, but she was fastidious; nothing but
human blood would meet her tastes, and so her devotees strangled
and waylaid and shot the victims marked out for sacrifice. Some
Thugs confessed to between seventy and eighty murders, and one to
the incredible number of one hundred and ninety-two (what saints
they would make!). The members of the sect-were classified into
spies, stranglers, and grave-diggers, the spies being in the first
stage and not ranking with the two more advanced degrees. Assuming
usually the garb of merchants or pilgrims, they often craved the
protection of their intended victims. Their favorite instrument
for strangulation was a handkerchief, in the use of which they
were most expert. The secret that these wretches were linked
together as a religious fraternity, bound by all the hopes of
future bliss and the terrors of eternal damnation as they
satisfied or failed to satisfy the craving of their horrible gods
for human blood, was not discovered until about a half century
ago. The government purchased the secret with the names and
address of every member and relative of a member of the sect,
arrested them all in 1837 and colonized them at Jubbulpore, where
they were taught trades. Their names and those of their
descendants remain on the list of persons suspect, and should
Thugism ever show its head again, the presence of any member near
the scene of the offence would be held almost conclusive evidence
against him.

The Major's department has on its records the names and
descriptions of more than four thousand of these people, and also
of nearly nine thousand professional gang robbers. Murder has been
done when the booty did not exceed six cents. But the systematic
 hunting down of these dangerous classes is fast ridding India of
this curse. If a man will murder another for a sixpence he can be
induced to betray his fellow-murderers for a moderate sum. Is it
not a blessing for the race that evil disintegrates? Only for good
ends can men permanently combine; then no feared betrayal works
dismay. As great movements, whether for good or evil, require many
supporters, society has its safe-guard; nothing really good can be
destroyed by conspirators.

The fort at Delhi resembles in its general features that of Agra,
but is famous as having been the receptacle of the Peacock Throne,
which was valued by a French jeweller at not less than six
millions sterling, say thirty millions of dollars. On such a
precious pedestal as this the Moguls sat and ruled this land. The
throne was plundered of its jewels by the Persians, but its frame
is still shown in the local museum. The fort remains in an
unusually good state of preservation, making it by far the most
satisfactory specimen of the gorgeous residences of the Moguls
that we have seen. The walls are of marble, inlaid in the interior
with genuine precious stones of various colors worked into the
forms of vines and flowers for a height of about six feet. The
floors are similarly decorated. The upper portions of the walls
have the same patterns, but these are painted, not inlaid. Every
part is gilded in the most elaborate manner, and, in short, here
alone of all places that I have seen, one could fancy himself
wandering through the resplendent wonders of the Arabian Nights.

Of course we did not neglect the many places rendered historical
by the mutiny. These are seen upon every side in this district,
but none was more interesting to me than the Cashmere Gate. The
rebels held the fort, and it was determined to assault it. Here is
the record of the men who volunteered to lay the train to the
Gate:

"Salkfied laid his bags, but was shot through the arm and leg, and
fell back on the bridge, handing the portfire to Sergeant Burgess,
_bidding him light the fuse_. Burgess was instantly shot dead
in the attempt. Sergeant Carmichael then advanced, took up the
portfire, and succeeded in the attempt, but immediately fell
mortally wounded. Sergeant Smith, seeing him fall, advanced at a
run, but finding that the fuse was already burning, threw himself
into the ditch."

The age of miracles is admittedly past, but it is certain that the
age of heroes existed in 1857.

The finest mosque in Delhi, and one of the finest in the world, is
the Jumma Musjid. We happened to visit it just as the priests were
calling the faithful to prayer, which they do by ascending to the
foot of the minarets and turning toward Mecca and there chanting
the call. Numerous worshippers came, and having washed in the
pool, went to the Mosque and began their worship on their knees.
Our guide was a Mohammedan, and I asked him what a good man is
required to do daily in the way of external worship. Here is the
programme as he gave it to me: Five times each day he washes hands
and feet and prays; first in the morning when he rises, and then
at one, four, after sunset, and before he goes to bed, repeating
the prayer to Allah and some words from the Koran, and touching
the ground with his forehead no less than thirty-eight times
during the day. This must be done every day, Saturday and Sunday
alike. The prayers are simple exclamations reciting the greatness
of God and the insignificance of his servants, and _ask for
nothing_. How very close to their daily lives must this
constant appeal at short intervals, through each day, bring the
Unknown, unless, as is said to be the case, it becomes a more
matter of form, familiarity breeding contempt.

       *       *       *       *       *

SAUGOR, GREAT PENINSULAR RAILWAY, February 19.

We are now _en route_ to Bombay from Delhi, a distance of
about thirteen hundred miles. We have been two nights in our
sleeping-car, and shall spend the night on the line and reach
Bombay in the morning. General Grant just passed us going toward
Calcutta, but there was no chance for us to get at him to shake
hands in India. This is the Pacific Railway of India, connecting
Calcutta and all the eastern portion with the western coast, upon
which Bombay is situated. The time between Calcutta and England
has been shortened almost a whole week by its construction. The
railways of India, of which there are at present about nine
thousand miles in operation, were principally constructed under a
guarantee of five per cent, by the Indian Government, and some of
them yield more than that already. In a short time there will be
none that will remain a charge upon the revenues. The government
retained the right, at intervals of twenty or twenty-five years,
to acquire possession and ownership of these lines upon certain
terms, and at no distant day will enjoy large revenues from its
railway property. If the days of guarantees and subsidies be not
hopelessly gone with us, here is an idea worth considering by our
government. Fancy what the ownership of the Union and Central
Pacific lines would mean as recompense for the amounts advanced.

The government has established several model farms in different
provinces, for the purpose of testing articles thought suitable
for cultivation in India, and of diffusing among the natives
improved methods of agriculture. Such farms under able scientific
management must eventually bring to the country what it is best
calculated to produce. The success attendant upon the growth of a
substitute for cinchona is significant. India must have quinine in
large quantities as a preventive of malaria. Experiments prove
that while the genuine article does not thrive here, a kindred
species, possessing nearly the same properties, although to a less
degree, will grow well. This has been cultivated in large
quantities, and I notice that the medical chief orders it to be
used in all dispensaries where quinine has hitherto been required,
although the medical officers are permitted in extreme cases to
order the dearer drug.

We are now traversing a level plain, and as this region was
blessed with rain in season, it seems much more fertile than some
other portions of the country; but the poorest harvests I ever saw
in any part of America would be rated as abundant here. We have
seen everywhere herds of buffaloes, bullocks, and sheep grazing in
fields which seemed to us entirely destitute of everything; not a
green leaf of any kind to be seen, and we could not understand how
animals could even get a mouthful of food in the brown parched
lands. But I am told they do nibble away at the short stalks and
roots of corn or sugar-cane left in the ground when the crop was
cut, and in this way manage to eke out a scanty existence. They
are at best little but skin and bone. When it is merely a question
of keeping life in the body, man and beast alike prove that but
little is required.

While everything about us partakes of a dusty clayey hue, we must
not forget that we see the plains of India in the winter. Let the
blessed Monsoon burst, and these fields, now so parched and dead,
are covered at once "as if the earth had given a subterranean
birth to heaven." As Roderick Dhu's host rose up at the blast of
his bugle, vegetation springs forth, and the land we now wonder at
is no longer barren, but teems with tropical luxuriance. Then come
the snakes and insects to poison and annoy. Last year, sixteen
thousand seven hundred and seventy human beings were reported
killed by snakes, while eight hundred and nineteen only were
killed by tigers.

One has difficulty in imagining such a change in any land as is
implied by these startling figures, for to-day as we travel not a
fly nor insect of any kind is to be seen. If it were not for the
intense heat, which I know I could not endure, I should like to
spend a summer in India, snakes notwithstanding, just to see so
complete a reversal of conditions, for no matter what reflection
may do to tell, as we see India only under winter conditions, we
shall always have a bias to rate it as the miserable, barren land
it appears to us. Travellers should be on their guard against this
tendency, for it leads to many false conclusions. If both sides of
a question need to be considered, all seasons of a country must be
experienced before a true judgment can be passed upon it. This is
especially true of India, where the change is, as it were, from
life to death.

We see wood-gatherers entering the cities, each with a bundle of
sticks, or twigs rather, on his head, the result of the day's
gathering--scarcely one of the sticks thicker than one's finger,
and the great bulk of the bundle composed of mere switches, so
closely is everything shaven in crowded Hindostan. To-day we stood
and looked at a native who had led his goat into the country to
pick up a meal. He bent the boughs of small trees one after
another so that the goat could strip them of their leaves. The
poor skeleton was ravenous. Nothing goes to waste in India, nor
anywhere in the East. Garbage and sewage have value, and all is
swept clean and kept clean in every hole and corner in
consequence. This simplifies life very much. Our elaborate system
of underground pipes, our sewers, drains, and modern conveniences
of all kinds, and our sanitary arrangements which are of such
prime importance to health, and to which we are fortunately giving
so much more attention--these the East wholly escapes. We have to
cure; they have prevention. Human labor at four or five cents per
day (2 to 2 1/2d.) changes the conditions of existence. It pays to
do so many things which, under our rates for labor, cannot be
thought of. I have mentioned that in Japan the refuse of all kinds
from a residence is not only taken away at any hours each day one
fixes, but a small sum is actually paid for it, which the servants
of the establishment consider a perquisite.

       *       *       *       *       *

BOMBAY, Thursday, February 20.

We reached this city on time this morning, feeling not in the
least fatigued by our three nights in the train. In the evening we
were fortunate enough to stroll down to the pier, where the band
was playing. Nowhere have we seen so varied a concourse of people.
The drive at Calcutta has long been noted as excelling any other
scene in the gorgeousness of its oriental coloring, but this of
the pier at Bombay surpasses by far what we saw there. Calcutta
can boast no wealthy native Parsees, who attend here in large
numbers in fine equipages with servants in livery. The Parsee
ladies especially are resplendent in jewels and color; and the
rich turbaned Mohammedan adds to the variety. The assemblage moved
to and fro among the carriages and along the edges of the broad
pier chatting gayly, while the music seemed to set everything in
motion. Native boatmen in their picturesque garbs passed now and
then plying their trade, carrying a Sahib's portmanteau or a
lady's bundle. I sat down and imagined myself in the midst of all
that I had seen of pretty seaports in grand opera, the ship scene
in L'Africaine, the landing of Desdemona in the Isle of Cyprus,
the fishermen in Masaniello, and I thought I had never seen
anything of this description so pleasing. I lost Vandy in the
crowd, and sat drinking it all in till dark. Certainly among the
fine things in the East is to be ranked the music upon the Apollo
Bunder, Bombay.

       *       *       *       *       *

FRIDAY, February 21.

We rose early, and were off before breakfast for a drive to the
"Tower of Silence." This is the mountain top where the Parsees
give their dead to be torn by the vultures. We shudder at
cremation, but the sacred fire of the funeral pile as it flames to
heaven has something awe-inspiring about it. Man sprung from the
dust mingles at last with the purer element of fire, and "vanishes
into air, into thin air," leaving no trace behind. But
deliberately to throw our dead out to be torn in pieces and
devoured by vultures--who can endure the thought! And yet many of
the inhabitants here would be most unhappy if denied the
consolation of believing that their bodies were to be served in
this manner. Nor are these poor and ignorant; on the contrary,
next to the English they are the best educated and the principal
merchants in the city. It is simply that they have been taught in
their youth that the earth must not be defiled by contact with the
dead. They cannot bury, therefore, neither can they burn, because
fire, one of the elements, is sacred; neither can they cast their
dead into the sea, for it, too, is holy. There seems to them no
way but this--of getting the birds of the air to come and take the
flesh. We were received at the foot of the mound by a Parsee
guide, who conducted us through every part. The towers, of which
there are five, are approached by long flights of easy stairs. We
entered a door at the top, and the first objects which struck our
eyes were the vultures. They sat motionless, as close together as
possible, on top of the wall of the round tower, with their tails
toward us and their beaks toward the centre of the tower where the
bodies are placed. The wall is about twenty feet high and fifty
feet in diameter. There did not appear to be room for one more
bird upon it, every inch of it being occupied, their bodies almost
touching each other. What a revolting coping they formed to the
otherwise plain round wall. More birds were perched on trees, and
on the other towers; and indeed everywhere we looked these
disgusting objects met our view. At ten o'clock every morning the
dead are taken from the dead-house, rich and poor alike being
previously divested of clothing; and were we to revisit the spot
at that hour, we are told the quiet stillness which pervaded the
grove would be found no longer. We inwardly congratulated
ourselves that the dreaded heat of a Bombay sun had sent us to
this place at so early an hour--ere the repast began--and rapidly
withdrew. It isn't much, yet I would not be robbed of it--such a
disposition of our dead as would still render it possible for us
to say with Laertes:

  "_Lay her i' the earth_;
   And from her fair and unpolluted flesh
   May violets spring."

Hard times are everywhere, and produce some strange changes. The
Banyan caste of Suerah has just resolved to abolish caste dinners
after funerals, but if a wealthy Hindoo still wishes to indulge in
these affairs he is permitted to do so after one year has elapsed.
I fear many of the dear departed will never be honored by the
feast after this interval. At marriages hereafter only one feast
is to be given, instead of four, which were formerly considered
the thing. Retrenchment is the word even where caste customs of
long standing are involved.

I note that yesterday a native was fined ten rupees for driving a
lame horse. What a singular race he must think these English!
Before their day he could have done what he liked with horse or
servant, male or female, "because he bought them," and now he
can't even be the judge when to use his horse. The more I see of
the thoroughness of the English Government in the East--its
attention to the minutest details, the exceptional ability of its
officials as evinced in the excellence of the courts, jails,
hospitals, dispensaries, schools, roads, railways, canals,
etc.,--the more I am amazed. I had before no idea of what was
implied by the government of India. It would have been madness for
any other people than the English to undertake it. Not that we
have not in America a class of men of equal organizing power, but
these have careers at home open to them, and could not be induced
to leave their own land. Even if this were not so, America
requires an improved civil service to bring its ablest men
forward. I am sure no such body of officials exists as that
comprising the civil service of India, whether judged by its
purity or its ability.

The British army has been reformed of late years in India to a
degree beyond popular knowledge of the subject. Every one agrees
in attributing the spread of the great mutiny to the fact that
there were at two or three critical points superannuated veterans,
unable to take before it was too late the most obvious measures
for its suppression. In short, it was here just as it was in
Washington when the Civil War began. I remember seeing General
Scott, the commander-in-chief, when Bull Run was lost, carried or
assisted from his carriage across the pavement to his office, he
being too old and infirm to walk. There were others scarcely less
feeble in charge of departments. It was just so in India; but now
mark the change. No man can retain the command of a regiment in
the British army more than five years, nor can generals serve
longer. These officers retire on pensions, and the next in
seniority takes his turn, always provided he passes successfully
the most searching examination at each successive promotion. I was
told that upon a recent examination only two officers out of
thirteen passed. No favoritism is shown, and I have met young men
related to the highest officials to whom it has been kindly
intimated that another career than the army had better be sought.
I have met many officers, and the impression made upon me is an
exceedingly favorable one. I do not believe that in case of war
now the blunder of those in command would have to be atoned for by
the superior fighting qualities of the rank and file, as was
notoriously the case during the Crimean War. The promotion of
General Wolseley means business. The Duke of Cambridge, because he
is a royal duke, is allowed to reign, but Wolseley is to govern.

I was struck with the full length portraits of the real man and
the sham in last year's Royal Academy. General Winfield Scott in
all his glory was not more brilliant than the duke, military hat
in hand with its white waving plumes, booted and spurred, his
breast a mass of decorations, "Old Fuss and Feathers" over again.
Beside him was a man in plain attire, about as ornamental as
General Grant; but this was the man of war, one of those very rare
characters who does what there is to do--in Egypt as in
Abyssinia--and never fails.

Bombay and Calcutta are again rivals for supremacy. Bombay Island,
upon which Bombay City stands, another of the keys of the world,
was given to Britain by Portugal as part of the dower of Catherine
of Braganza when she married Charles II. Think of a woman giving
anything for the privilege of marrying such a wretch! but so
little was it esteemed that the government gave it in 1688 to the
East India Company for a rental of L10 per annum. It was
subsequently made the principal seat of their power, but it had no
access to the interior, and Calcutta, which stands at the mouth of
a river system of inland transportation rivalled only by that of
our smoky Pittsburgh, soon eclipsed it. There was no chance for
Bombay against this natural advantage, and she had to succumb; but
now, since railways have penetrated the interior, and especially
since the opening of the Suez Canal route has brought Bombay so
very much nearer to Europe, the struggle for supremacy has begun
anew. The European traffic now goes mainly to her, and Calcutta
gets her portion by rail through her ancient rival. In 1872 the
exports and imports of Bombay were L50,000,000, and those of
Calcutta L54,000,000; so you see it is not going to be a walk over
for Calcutta, though her population still exceeds that of her
challenger by about a hundred thousand. It is water _vs_.
rail on a large scale, and the result will be looked for with
interest. I think the former capital, once dethroned, will
eventually regain the crown; but there is plenty of room for both,
and the rivalry between them should be a generous one.

Bombay is by far the finest city in the East, but it has been
inflated more than any other, and is now undergoing severe
contraction. Its public buildings would do credit to any European
capital. Government concluded to sell the land fronting on the bay,
which had been used as the site of an antiquated fort, and such was
the rage for speculation at the time that five million dollars'
worth of land was disposed of and enough retained to give Bombay a
beautiful little park and a long drive along the beach. Government
took the money and erected on part of the land retained the
magnificent buildings referred to. We met one gentleman who had
bought one hundred thousand dollars' worth of the new lots, for
which he admitted he could not get today more than twenty thousand
dollars. But Bombay is only learning the universal lesson which the
world seems to need to have repeated every ten or twelve years. It
is fortunate that this city is our last in India, because it so far
excels any other. Nowhere else is such oriental richness to be seen.
The colors of the masses as they move rapidly to and fro remind you
of the combinations of the kaleidoscope. The native women of the
lowest order work in gangs, and it is their dress which chiefly
brightens the scene. A dark-green tight-fitting jacket, a magenta
mantle festooned about the body and legs in some very graceful
manner and reaching to the knees, the feet and legs bare to the
knees, a purple veil on the head but thrown back over the
shoulders--this is the dress as well as I can describe it. The habit
of carrying loads upon the head makes them as straight as arrows,
and as they march along with majestic stride they completely eclipse
the poor-looking male, who seems to have had his manhood ground out
of him by generations of oppression, while his companion has passed
through subjugation without losing her personal dignity.

It seems homelike to see street railways, of which there are
several prosperous lines here. For this enterprise an American
gentleman has to be thanked. All classes ride together, and caste
in Bombay gets serious knocks in consequence. From Bombay as a
centre civilization is destined to radiate. A palpable breach has
already been made in the solid walls which have hitherto shut
India from the entrance of new ideas, and through this gate the
assaulting columns must eventually gain possession; but it will
not be within the span of men now living, nor for several
generations to come. The Sailors' Home and the hospitals of the
city are highly creditable, and among the charitable institutions
I must not forget the Hindoo hospital for wretched animals, where
some of each kind are tenderly cared for, to signify the reverence
paid by this sect to all kinds of life, for the meanest form is
sacred to them. We had a curious illustration of this while in
Benares examining the richest specimens of the delicate
embroideries for which that city is celebrated. A little nasty
intruder showed itself on one of the finest, and a gentleman with
us involuntarily reached forth to kill it, but the three Hindoos
caught his arm at once, and exhibited great anxiety to save the
insect. One of them did get it, and taking it to the window set it
at liberty. It was Uncle Toby and the troublesome fly over again,
as immortalized by the genius of Sterne: "Get thee gone, poor
devil! there is room enough in the world for thee and for me,"
quoth Uncle Toby. And does not Cowper say--

  "I would not enter on my list of friends
   (Though graced with polish'd manners and fine sense,
   Yet wanting sensibility) the man
   Who needlessly sets foot upon a worm."

Well, these Hindoos wouldn't do it either. Let them be credited
accordingly, heathen though they be.

It begins to grow too hot here; I could not live one season in
India--that I am convinced of. The tropical sun has no mercy,
piercing through thick pith helmet, white umbrella, and driving
one into the house. We are to leave none too soon. This evening we
were surprised to see, as we strolled along the beach, more
Parsees than ever before, and more Parsee ladies richly dressed;
all seemed wending their way to the sea. It was the first of the
new moon, a period sacred to these worshippers of the elements;
and here on the shores of the ocean, as the sun was sinking in the
sea, and the slender silver thread of the crescent moon was
faintly shining in the horizon, they congregated to perform their
religious rites. Fire was there in its grandest form--the sun--and
water in the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean outstretched before
them. The earth was under their feet, and wafted across the sea
the air came laden with the perfumes of "Araby the Blest." Surely
no time nor place could be more fitly chosen than this for lifting
up the soul to the realms beyond sense. I could not but
participate with these worshippers in what was so grandly
beautiful. There was no music save the solemn moan of the waves as
they broke into foam on the beach,

  "With their ain eerie croon
   Working their appointed work,
   And never, never done."

But where shall we find so mighty an organ, or so grand an anthem?
How inexpressibly sublime the scene appeared to me, and how
insignificant and unworthy of the Unknown seemed even our
cathedrals, "made with human hands," when compared to this looking
up through Nature unto Nature's God! I stood and drank in the
serene happiness which seemed to fill the air. I have seen many
modes and forms of worship, some disgusting, others saddening, a
few elevating when the organ pealed forth its tones, but all poor
in comparison to this. Nor do I ever expect in all my life to
witness a religious ceremony which will so powerfully affect me as
that of the Parsees on the beach at Bombay. While I gazed upon the
scene I stood conscious only that I was privileged to catch a
glimpse of something that was not of the earth, but, as I
sauntered homeward, Wordsworth's lines came to me as the fittest
expression of my feelings. The passage is too long to quote at
length; besides I have to confess I cannot at this moment recall
it all. But he tells first how in his youth Nature was all in all
to him, "nor needed a moral sense unborrowed from the eye," but
later the inner light came; and hear him in his maturer years:

                      "For I have learned
   To look on Nature, not as in the hour
   Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
   The still, sad music of humanity,
   Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
   To chasten and subdue. And I have felt
   A Presence that disturbs me with the joy
   Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
   Of something far more deeply interfused,
   Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
   And the round ocean and the living air,
   And the blue sky, and in the mind of man;
   A motion and a spirit, that impels
   All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
   And rolls through all things."

"The still sad music of humanity!"--it was that I heard sounding
in the prayers of those devout Parsees and in the moan of that
mighty sea. Sweet, refreshing it was, though tinged with sadness,
as all our more precious musings must be, "since all we know is,
nothing can be known."

In one of my strolls along the beach I met a Parsee gentleman who
spoke excellent English. From him I learned that the disciples of
Zoroaster number only about two hundred thousand, and of those no
fewer than fifty thousand are in Bombay. They were driven from
Persia by the Mohammedans and settled here, where they have
prospered.

They do not intermarry with other sects, believe in one God, and
worship the sun, moon, earth, and stars only as being the visible
angels of God, as he termed them. In themselves these are nothing,
but are the best steps by which we can ascend to God. Good men will
be happy forever; bad men will be unhappy for a long time after
death, and very bad men will be severely punished. But I was
delighted to be assured that no one will be punished forever, all
life being sacred to God because he made it, and all life must
eventually be purified, return to its Maker, and be merged in Him.
Parsees cannot burn the dead, because fire should not be prostituted
to so vile a use. They cannot bury, because the earth should not be
desecrated with the dead, neither should the sea; and therefore God
has provided vultures, which cannot be defiled, to absorb the flesh
of the dead. I said to him that the mere thought of violence offered
to our dead caused us to shudder. "Then what do you think of the
worms?" he asked. This was certainly an effective estoppel. "It
comes to this," he continued, "a question of birds or worms." "You
are right" (I had to admit it), I said; "after all, it's not worth
disputing about." When I had asked him a great many questions, I
suppose he thought turn-about was fair play, and he began to
cross-examine me upon many points of Christian doctrine, which I did
my best to put in the proper form. We finally agreed that no good
men or good women of any form of religion would be eternally
miserable, and upon this platform we said good-bye and parted.

On looking around, I saw that we had become the centre of quite a
circle of Parsees, Hindoos, and Mohammedans, who had been
attracted by our conversation, their earnest bronze faces,
surmounted by the flaming red turbans, so very close to mine,
forming with the gorgeous colors of their flowing robes, a picture
I shall not soon forget. They opened a way of egress, and Sahib
passed out of the throng amid their salaams, evidently an object
of intense curiosity.

Our excursion to the Caves of Elephanta was very enjoyable. They
are decidedly worth seeing. Here is the strongest contrast to the
grand open-air worship of the Parsees, for the Hindoos sought to
hide their worship in caves which shut out the light of day, and
to seek their gods in the dark recesses. The carved figures and
columns of the Temple are fine, the principal idol being of great
size--a huge representation of the Hindoo Trinity of Brahma,
Vishnu, and Siva, which make the three-headed god. The effect of
such a monster, seen dimly by the lighted torch, upon ignorant
natures, could not but be overpowering. When examined closely
there is nothing repulsive in the faces; on the contrary, the
expression of all three is rather pleasing than otherwise, like
that of Buddha. It is evident that the gods of the Hindoos are
good natured, kind, and disposed to forgiveness.

       *       *       *       *       *

BOMBAY, Monday, February 24.

We sailed at six in the evening by the splendid Peninsula and
Oriental mail steamer Pekin. The city was bathed in the rays of a
brilliant sunset as we steamed slowly out of the harbor, and we
bade farewell to India when it looked the fairest.

And now for something on the great Indian Question, for it would
never do for a traveller to visit India and not to have his
decided opinion upon matters and things there, and his clearly-
defined policy embracing the management of the most intricate
problems involved in the government of two hundred and fifty
millions of the most ignorant races known, and all founded upon a
few weeks' hurried travel among them. There is, however, a much
more extensive class who are even more presumptuous, for they have
just as complete a policy upon this subject, although they have
never seen India at all.

The vast country we know as India, then, is held and governed, not
as one country, but district by district. One province, for
instance, has a native ruler with whom England has nothing
whatever to do except that, by right of treaty, she sends a
political agent to his court, supported in some cases, and in
others not, by a certain number of soldiers. This Resident is
expected to confer with and advise the Rajah, and keep him and his
officials from outrageous courses. Especially are they prevented
from warring upon neighboring States. In extreme cases, when
counsel and remonstrance avail not, the government has had either
to depose the ruling Rajah and substitute another, as in the
recent affair of the Rajah of Baroda, or to confiscate the
province and merge it in the Empire, as in the case of the King of
Oude. But what must be borne in mind is that no two native rulers
govern alike. Laws and customs prevailing in one province are
unknown in another. Land is held by one tenure in one place, and
by an entirely different system in another. India is therefore not
one nation, but a vast conglomeration of different races and
principalities, each independent of the other, differing as much
as France does from Germany, and much more than England does from
America. Add to this the fact that the people of any one district
are not a homogeneous community, but subdivided into distinct
castes, which refuse to intermarry or even to eat with one
another, and a faint idea of the magnitude of the Indian question
will begin to dawn upon one.

It is this mass which England has to rule and keep firmly in order
with her sixty thousand troops, and which constitutes the
government of India the most difficult problem with which, I
believe, statesmen have to deal. The amount of knowledge,
statesmanship, tact, temper, patience and resource absolutely put
in requisition by the men who rule India equals, I feel sure, that
required for the government of the whole of civilized Europe
combined; for it is always easy to govern a homogeneous people,
the rulers being of the people themselves, and having the good of
their respective countries at heart. It seems to me that an
unnecessary element of danger arises from the fact that these
Rajahs are permitted to maintain no fewer than three hundred
thousand native troops, mainly to swell their importance. The
question of enforcing reductions in these armaments is now under
consideration, I observe, but I should decidedly say with Hamlet.

  "Oh! reform it altogether."

I would not allow a Rajah to keep more than one hundred armed
troops, except as a body-guard, beyond the number actually
required to enforce order. Upon this point I have decided views.

The existence of Rajahs is perhaps a necessary evil. They are
maintained in consequence of a well-grounded reluctance on the
part of the government to assume the task of governing more
territory. It is to be regretted that it has been necessary to
extend the sway so far already; nevertheless, the day will come
when the petty courts must be swept away, as they have been in
Japan and Germany, and the whole country given the benefits of
uniform rule. It is estimated that the Rajahs tax the people to an
extent equal to the revenues of the government--about $300,000,000
per annum: of this much is squandered in upholding their state--a
grievous exaction from so poor a country. This will soon be one of
the burning questions of India.

The Rajah of Jeypoor draws from the people $6,000,000 per annum,
and one or two others exceed this sum. Poor fellow! the other day
he had to marry his tenth wife--a sister of two of his previous
wives, for whom no suitable husband could be found. There were but
two families in the realm, I believe, of the proper rank, and
neither happened just then to have a nice young man on hand. The
disgrace of having an unmarried woman in the family was not to be
borne, and the old Rajah had to husband her, as he had her other
sister some time ago. Although so well provided with wives, he has
never been blessed with an heir, and at his death his first wife
will adopt a son, who will be his successor.

What do I think of India? is asked me every day; but I feel that
one accustomed to the exceptional fertility and advantages of
America--a land so wonderfully endowed that it seems to me more
and more the special favorite of fortune--is very apt to underrate
India. We saw it after two years of bad harvests, and a third most
unpromising one coming on. Judged from what I saw, I can only say
that I, as a lover of England, find it impossible to repress the
wish that springs up at every turn, Would she were safely and
honorably out of it! Retiring now is out of the question; she has
abolished the native system in large districts, and must perforce
continue the glorious task of giving to these millions the
blessings of order.

Her withdrawal would be the signal for internecine strife, and
such a saturnalia of blood and rapine as the world has never
known; but were the question whether Britain should to-day accept
India as a gift, and I had the privilege of replying, then,
"Declined with thanks;" and yet it is the fashion just now to call
India "the brightest jewel in the crown." The glitter of that
jewel may be red again some day. I have heard only two reasons
advanced in favor of India as an English possession. The first is,
it furnishes official station and employment for a large number
who would otherwise have no field; but I think there is yet plenty
of unoccupied territory in which these gentlemen can find work if
they can hold their own in the struggle for existence. Besides,
the official class requires less protection, not greater, than it
has hitherto been favored with, if the true interest of England is
to be considered.

The second reason is a commercial one, and it is pointed out that
the trade of England is thereby extended; to which it may be said
in reply that the occupation of foreign countries and the
subjugation of foreign races are in no measure required by the
demands of trade. The possession of small islands at proper points
secures all this. Hong Kong and a small strip at Shanghai and one
or two other ports, afford all the facilities required for England
to obtain the trade. Penang on the west of the Malay Peninsula,
Singapore at the south end, do the same. All of these have the
precious silver thread surrounding them, and can be held easily by
Britannia against the world without and native races struggling
within for independence, as they are bound to do some day.

There is another view to be taken of this question by a well-
wisher of Britain which cannot be ignored. She, the mother of
nations and champion of oppressed nationalities, necessarily
occupies a false position in India; there she must assume the
_role_ of the conqueror. I do not speak of this to disapprove
of it, or even of the Press Laws recently adopted; to avert still
greater evils she is compelled to go to any length. Nevertheless,
it is a false position; the stars in their courses fight against
it, and sooner or later England will retire from it. In short, the
pole-star of Indian policy is to bend every energy to the sowing
of seed which will produce a native class capable at first of
participating in the government, and which will eventually become
such as can be trusted with entire control, so that England may
stand to India as she stands to-day to Canada and Australia. There
is one course for England, and one only, and this let her adopt
speedily. Let her call around her Indian government the best men
of India, explain to them her aim and end, show them how noble her
aspirations are; point to Canada and Australia as proofs of her
colonial system, and say, To this condition we hope to bring your
country. Can you resist our appeal to come and help us?

Since all this was written the Ilbert bill question has arisen. It
will be understood at once that such a measure is believed by me
to be emphatically a step not only in the right direction, but in
the only direction, if grave dangers are to be avoided in India.
Let me tell my English readers that, travelling as I did, an
American, and not, in Indian parlance, as one of the governing
class--one of the usurpers--I had many opportunities of hearing
educated natives speak the thoughts of their hearts, which to an
Englishman's ears would have been treason. Such trustworthy
indications of the forces moving under the crust should be
considered as invaluable by the rulers of India. While, therefore,
educated natives give assent to the claims made for English rule,
that it keeps order and enforces justice as far as its courts can
reach, they are yet antagonistic to it. It is the old story: You
have taught people to read, and placed before them as types of
highest excellence our rebels, Cromwell, Hampden, Sidney, Russell,
Washington, Franklin. In so far as a native Indian dwells
contentedly while his country is ruled by a foreign race, by just
so much do we despise him in our heart, for loyalty to England
means treachery to his country, and one cannot depend upon
traitors.

If India were told that the chief delight of England was not to
hold dependencies but to bring forth nations competent to govern
themselves--a much grander mission--and were England slowly, but
steadily to introduce, little by little, the native element in
government whenever practicable--and that it is practicable to do
so in every department to a greater or less degree I am
convinced--then I should feel that sufficient pressure had been
relieved to give hope that peace would reign there. The greatest
danger England will have to contend with in every measure taken
toward this great end will be the violent opposition of the Anglo-
Indian. It will be difficult to carry reform against the advice of
The only class which seems competent to advise, viz., such
Englishmen as have had experience of India. I hold such to be
Totally incompetent as a class to take proper views of Indian
problems--such men as Sir Richard Temple are the exception. His
articles upon India seem to me most salutary and to denote a
statesmanlike grasp of a subject of paramount importance to
England. The reason why the Englishman in India is likely to be
entirely wrong in his views of Indian government is because he
sits on the safety valve of the terrible boiler. He hears every
now and then the sharp rush of the confined steam, which startles
the ear as it passes. When it is proposed to relieve the pressure
and allow more steam to escape he is frightened, and protests that
his position would thereby become unendurable.

But we who stand afar off and know the play of the forces in that
boiler, as I know them from sources sealed to him, see that the
steam must be allowed vent in constantly increasing volume if a
terrible catastrophe is to be averted. John Bright, of all English
public men of the first rank, seems to me to understand the Indian
problem best; hence the interest he takes in it--an interest which
every public man would share did he realize the situation England
occupies in Hindostan.

I have before referred to the fact that the Anglo-Indian
authorities protested against railway travel being conducted
without special reference to caste, and that they were overruled
by the Home Government. The result is that more impression has
been made upon caste, and is made daily and hourly, by the rush of
every grade to get the best seats in the same carriage, than by
all other influences combined. The Home Office judged more wisely
than those who were too close to the problem to get a clear view;
and so it must be in every measure calculated to elevate the
people of India to a higher stage of civilization. In my opinion
England can scarcely move too rapidly in the imperative task of
attaching able natives, as these arise, to her side, and giving
them power--at least the danger is that she will move too slowly
rather than too fast.

The business of colonizing, as a whole, does not appear to me to
pay. As a mission there is none so noble or to be compared with
it, next to governing well at home; but beyond this England's
share of the material good looks small. If the colony is rich and
prosperous it sets up for itself; if weak and unsuccessful, it
becomes a Natal, and calls upon the generous-hearted mother for
assistance. The gain to the colonies is obvious; nothing could be
finer for them; and if it be clearly understood that England
elects to play the tender nurse and receive her reward in the
consciousness of doing good--all right. Let her continue! But if
it be thought that these dependencies enhance her own power and
promote her prosperity, the sooner the books are balanced the
better. Only one prayer, May heaven keep America from the
colonizing craze! Cuba! Santo Domingo! avaunt, and quit our sight!

From another point of view one keeps inquiring whether all the
advantages flowing from the introduction of English ideas, as far
as these can really be introduced in the government of subject
races--whether, after all, the result is, upon the whole, for the
real permanent good of these inferior races. To the uninformed
man, who has never been beyond his own island, it seems fanciful,
perhaps, to raise this question. English civilization, freedom,
civil and religious liberty, order, law, Christianity--these not
beneficial, think you! Softly, my friend, softly. These may be
growths admirable for English-speaking people who can assimilate
them, but yet unsuitable for the Hottentot. You press man's food
upon babes to their injury, may be. The true evolutionist must
regard these attempts with sorrow.

Speaking broadly, I do not believe that it is in the power of
England--and of course much less of any other country--to confer
upon another race benefits which are not more than cancelled by
the evil which usually follows from her interference. Rob even the
lowest people in development today of the necessity of governing
themselves, take this responsibility away from them, as
interference does take it away, and the natural growth of that
people is not only checked, but it is diverted into channels
foreign to it.

If colonization can follow occupation it is a different matter--
the interference is temporary, and Australians, Canadians and
Americans soon come forth and govern themselves, the native-born
soon grow patriotic, and work out their own destiny. In such
cases England's share is her glory, a glory of which no other
nation partakes, for she alone is the grand old mother of nations,
God bless her! It is different with India. No one pretends that
Our race can ever obtain a foothold there. Conquerors the English
are, and conquerors they must remain as long as they remain at
all, which I ardently trust may not be long; not longer than the
natives are willing to accept the task of self-government.
Meanwhile surely no further rash responsibilities should be taken
upon herself by England. She can do most good by example. The
little islands of Hong Kong and Singapore, and the other Straits
Settlements, Shanghai, and even Ceylon, which is not too
big--these teach the races of the East what western civilization
means, and serve as models to which they can move with such
differentiation as circumstances require and without losing the
inestimable advantages of thinking and acting for themselves. Even
Christianity will make more progress from such examples than if
through the efforts of a paid propaganda we try to _force_ it
upon people. Rob them of this freedom to act, to accept, and to
reject, and all that England can give in return will not atone for
the injury she inflicts. A nation should have much to offer in
exchange, more than I see that any nation has, which stifles in
the breast of the most ignorant people in the world the sacred
germ of self-development.

The total acreage under wheat in India is not much, if any, less
than that of the United States, and the average yield about the
same--thirteen bushels per acre. The quality is excellent. America
cannot afford to ignore this potential rival. The cheaper labor of
India is quite an element in her favor, but cheap labor is not
always cheap. One educated Minnesotan, with his machinery, must
count for many spindle-shanked Hindoos with their wooden rakes.
India's remoteness from Europe and the lack of inland
transportation facilities, give America the vantage-ground. The
present low price of wheat in Liverpool today, however, warns our
western friends that there are other great sources of supply.
Until 1873, only ten years ago, an export duty was laid upon
Indian wheat. The amount exported in that year was valued at only
L167,000; last year, 1882, the exports were L8,869,000
($45,000,000), more than one-third as much as the United States
exported in that year ($112,000,000), to which, however, should be
added $35,000,000 worth of wheat flour exported, making the total
United States export $157,000,000. It must be remembered that
India has scarcely yet entered the race with us for the supremacy
in this department, for while we have 110,000 miles of railway
with 55,000,000 of people, she has 250,000,000 of people with only
10,000 miles of rail. This may seem alarming to the untravelled
Yankee, but let him possess his soul in patience. It is a very
safe wager that notwithstanding this seemingly uncalled-for
disparity in railway facilities, the American railway system is
still to increase at a far greater ratio than the Indian. Last
year only three hundred and eighty-seven miles of line were built
in India as against our six thousand, and even my friend, William
Fowler, M.P., in his most interesting article in the
_Fortnightly Review_ for February, 1884, "India, Her Wheat,
and Her Railways," to which I beg to refer such of my readers as
are specially interested in this subject--even he only suggests
that twelve hundred miles should be built every year in India; to
secure which he urges the government to give a guarantee upon
$50,000,000 per year, in order to obtain the necessary capital,
which he admits cannot be obtained otherwise. This the government
is not likely to do until the people rule England and sweep away
the privileged classes, who live mainly through wars, and would be
relegated to obscurity were the resources of England once spent
for peaceful development, as those of Republican America are.
Friend Fowler will get a vote to add millions to England's burden
by an Afghan or Zulu war, or even to squander her means upon
worthless members of a more than useless royal family and its
dependents of the court long before he will get a pound for his
Indian railways. The Republic will hold control of the world's
wheat market for a hundred years and more, but prices must rule
lower in consequence of India. Beyond that let posterity wrestle
with the question.

As to cotton, of which America holds a firmer grasp upon the
world's supply than it appears she does of wheat, India is not an
impossible second if from any cause the American supply were
forced to extreme prices. During the civil war in the United
States, cotton cultivation in India, as I have before said,
reached an extraordinary development. In 1866 the exports amounted
to thirty-seven millions of pounds sterling, $185,000,000; now the
average has fallen to about $40,000,000 per year. If the staple
were equal to the American, India would be formidable as a rival,
but it is not, and consequently the growth of cotton in the South
seems sure to increase as rapidly as ever.

After six days' delightful sail we had our first glimpse of Arabia
this morning, and are now skirting the Arabian coast. Aden was
reached Sunday morning, and we drove out to the native town and
saw the tanks said to have been constructed thousands of years
ago. It rains only once in every year or two, and a supply of
water is obtained by storing the torrents which then flow from the
hills. A more desolate desert than that which surrounds the city
surely does not exist. Aden itself illustrates how the whirligig
of time revolves. Before the discovery of the passage round the
Cape of Good Hope it was the chief entrepot for the trade between
Europe and Asia. It fell into insignificance when the stream of
traffic left for the new route around the Cape of Good Hope; but
now the Suez Canal, which restores the original route via the Red
Sea, to its former supremacy, once more raises Aden to her former
commanding position. The population, which in 1839 had dwindled to
fewer than a thousand, now numbers nearly thirty thousand.

Aden is just one of those natural keys of the world which England
should hold, and I doubt not will hold to the last. The town
stands upon a narrow peninsula composed of desolate volcanic
rocks, five miles long from east to west, and three from north to
south, connected with the main land by a neck of flat sandy ground
only a few feet high. The town itself is surrounded by precipitous
rocks, which really make it a natural fortress impregnable against
attack. All that I urge against conquest in general is
inapplicable here, and I say let England guard such spots. As long
as she does she is mistress of the sea. Her influence at such
points is always for good. The thirty thousand natives of Aden,
for instance, may now be considered subjects of Britain by their
own act. They have flocked to the town attracted by the advantages
to be derived from a residence there, just as the Chinese have
done at Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore. There is no coercion in
the matter. One foreigner electing to come under the British flag
is worth ten thousand held down by force, whether considered as an
element of strength to the Empire, or as conducive to its glory.

This is the market of the world for ostrich feathers. We saw
droves of the birds wandering about Aden and its suburbs at home
in the sand. The natives keep ostriches as their chief dependence,
and we are besieged at every turn with offers of rare
feathers--feathers--feathers--nothing but feathers.

Our trip on the Pekin was the most delightful we ever had at sea;
even Vandy was well, and gained by the journey. We had very
agreeable company on board, and were especially fortunate in our
neighbors, Mr., Mrs., and Miss G., of Edinburgh, at table. The
ship was crowded with officers and officers' wives and children
returning from India to England, for children must be taken home
out of the climate of India. Nothing can exceed the discipline and
general management of the Peninsula and Oriental ships. Promotion
from the ranks is the rule, and they certainly are served by a
class of men which it would be difficult to equal elsewhere. The
Cunard line is probably the only counterpart of the Peninsula and
Oriental line in existence.

This was our first experience of life upon a vessel crowded with
various ranks of English people. On the Atlantic our steamer
acquaintances are with few exceptions Americans. The contrast is
great in one respect: the tendency of the English passengers is to
form themselves into a great number of small cliques. No doubt
this tendency prevails to some extent upon the Atlantic also, but
then congenial tastes and education form the divisions there and
every one is in his proper sphere. Upon the Pekin we found that
rank and position formed a strong element in the case--regardless
of merit. Vandy and I being republicans, not caring a rap about
either birth or position, and without social status in England,
seemed to be the only cosmopolitans on board. From the major-
general and family down to the clerk of a mercantile house and his
nice wife and children, we had the free run of the ship. But when
we met intelligent and interesting people in one or the other
grade, and proposed to make them known to others, as, had both
parties been Americans, would have given much pleasure, and from
whose acquaintance mutual benefit would have resulted, we found
that the miserable barriers of artificial distinction stood in the
way.

I wished two young ladies to know each other, for they were akin
in education, manners, feelings, and accomplishments, and one
morning I said to the one who surely was not the less desirable
acquaintance: "You and Miss----should know each other; would you
not like to make her acquaintance? If so, I shall ask her, and I
am sure she would be pleased to make yours. Both will be the
gainers."

"Mr. Carnegie, excuse me, but she is a major-general's daughter,
the advance must come from her. If she ever expresses a wish to
know me, then you come to me and I'll tell you. This is the proper
thing, you know."

Happy American young ladies, into whose pretty heads the thought
would never enter that another would be so silly as to stand upon
position, and if by any chance it did momentarily arise, it would
be scouted as inconsistent with one's own self-respect as a woman.
England will never be truly homogeneous till throne and
aristocracy give place to the higher republican form.

India claims many victims. We had yesterday a young man near us
who had been in India only a short time, and who was returning
invalided. Poor fellow! He lay in the hatchway in his easy-chair
from morning until night, gazing wistfully over the sea toward his
beloved England. There he would soon get well. Only last night as
I passed to bed I stopped to encourage him, telling him how finely
we were dancing along homeward. At dawn I heard the pulsations of
the engine cease for a few moments only, but in those moments he
had been cast into the sea. Scarcely any one knew of his death
except the doctor and a few of the crew; not a soul on board knew
anything of him; he was an entire stranger to all. But think of
the mother and sisters who were to meet him on arrival and convey
him "to the green lanes of Surrey!" See them hastening on board
and casting anxious glances around! No one will know them, but
every one will suspect who they are, and what their errand, and
instinctively avoid them--for who would be the messenger to strike
a mother down with a word? The death and burial were sad--sad
enough; but the real tragedy is yet to be played in Southampton,
when the living are to envy the fate of the dead, who, "after
life's fitful fever," sleeps so well in the depths of the Indian
Ocean.

       *       *       *       *       *

SUEZ, Friday, February 28.

We reached Suez at six o'clock in the morning, and anchored within
the bay. An enterprising sailboat captain came alongside and
offered to take us across the bay to the town in time to catch the
only train leaving for Cairo for twenty-four hours. It was two
long hours' sail, but the breeze was strong, and Vandy and I
resolved to try it, bargaining with the captain, however, upon the
basis of no train no pay. The few passengers on deck at that early
hour gathered to give the adventurers a farewell cheer, and we
were off. We made it just in time, and grasping a bottle of wine
and some bread at the station--for we had had no breakfast--we
started for Cairo.

The railway runs parallel to the Suez Canal, which, by the way,
was a canal in the days of the Pharaohs, but, of course, much
smaller and only used for irrigation. We saw the top-masts of
several steamers above the sandy banks as they crawled slowly
through the desert. How great the traffic already is and with what
strides it grows is well known. Its capacity can at any time be
doubled by lighting it with electricity, but at present vessels
are compelled by rule to lie still after sunset. All is dead
through the night. In a few years this will be changed; and indeed
the canal must be widened ere long and made a double track
throughout to accommodate the continual stream of ships plying
between the East and the West. At present it is just like one of
our single-track railways with sidings or passing places. The
distance from end to end is only about a hundred miles, but ships
sometimes take three and even four days to squeeze through. This
must be remedied. Twenty-four hours seems to be about the proper
time-table. When past Ismailia, the line leaves the canal and runs
westward through the land of Goshen. After the parched plains of
India, it was refreshing once more to look upon "deep waving
fields and pastures green." We were within the regions watered by
the Nile, and the harvests resembled those of the carse of Gowrie.

We reached Cairo on time, and our first inquiries were about our
friends, Mr. H., Miss N., and party, who were expected there from
their three months' excursion upon the Nile. Fortunately, we found
their dalbeah anchored in the stream, and we drove to it without
delay. Sure enough, as we reached the bank, there lay the Nubia,
that little gem, with the Stars and Stripes floating above her. We
were rowed on board only to find that our friends were in the
city. However, we made ourselves at home in the charming saloon,
and awaited their return. Unfortunately, some sailor on shore had
told them of two strangers going aboard, and there was not the
entire surprise we had intended; but if there was no surprise
there was no lack of cordial welcome, and we realized to the
fullest extent what a world of meaning lies in the quaint simile,
"as the face of a friend in a far-off country."

This reunion at Cairo was one of the fine incidents of our tour.
Many months ago we had parted from Mr. H. and family, and half in
jest appointed Cairo as our next meeting-place. They went in one
direction, we in another, and without special reference to each
other's movements it had so turned out that we caught them here.
It was a narrow hit, however, as they were to leave next day for
Alexandria; and had we remained on the Pekin, as all the other
passengers did, and not undertaken the sail across the bay, we
should have missed them. We grasped hands once more and sat down
to dinner, the Nile gurgling past, the Pyramids with their forty
centuries looking down upon us, and here was one more happy band
drawing more closely to each other since separated from friends at
home, enacting over again such scenes as the famous river has
witnessed upon its bosom for thousands of years--one generation
going and another coming, but the mysterious Nile remaining to
welcome each succeeding host; and thus,

  "Thro' plots and counterplots--
   Thro' gain and loss--thro' glory and disgrace--
   ...still the holy stream
   Of human happiness glides on!"

Today sight-seeing was subordinated to the rare pleasure of
enjoying the company of our friends, but we all drove through
Cairo streets and saw one memorable sight--the great college of
Islam, where more than ten thousand students are constantly under
preparation as priests of the Prophet. We saw them in hundreds
sitting on their mats in the extensive open courts, all busily
engaged in learning to recite the Koran to masters, or listening
to professors who expounded it. Their intense earnestness soon
impresses you. From this centre radiate every year thousands of
these propagandists, scattering themselves over Arabia and to the
farthest boundaries of Islam, and even beyond, warring upon
idolatry and proclaiming the unity of God. No one can fail, I
think, to receive from such a visit as we paid a much higher
estimate of the vitality of Mohammedanism, and, having seen what
it has to supplant, we cannot refrain from wishing these
missionaries God-speed. The race rises step by step, never by
leaps and bounds. Upon this point I am much impressed by a
paragraph from a lecture delivered by Marcus Dodd, D.D., at the
Presbyterian College, London, which seems to me to take a wider
and sounder view than one usually finds from such a source, and is
therefore specially pleasing. He says: "The great lesson in
comparative religion which we learn from the connection of Judaism
and Christianity is that men are not always ripe for the highest
religion; that there is a fulness of time which it may take four
thousand years to produce. The Mosaic religion, imperfect as it
was, compared with Christianity, was better for Israel during its
period and preparation than the religion of Christ would have
been." Then, referring to the Mohammedan religion, he says: "It is
not denied that this religion did at once effect reforms which
Christianity had failed to effect. It accomplished more for Arabia
in a few years than Christianity had accomplished for centuries.
It abolished at a stroke the idolatry which Christianity had
fought in vain." It is to such men as Mr. Dodd that we are to look
to keep religion abreast of the age.

Max Mueller says: "In one sense every religion was a true religion,
being the only religion which was possible at the time, which was
compatible with the language, the thoughts, and the sentiments of
each generation, which was appropriate to the age of the world."
The Brahman has found the same truth. "Men of an enlightened
understanding well know," says he, "that the Supreme has imparted
to each nation the doctrine most suitable for it, and He,
therefore, beholds with satisfaction the various ways in which He
is worshipped." In other words, religion is the highest expression
of which a people is capable. There is no reason why we should not
try to prepare a people for a better one, but note this, _they
must be prepared_. To _force_ new religions upon any race
is a sad mistake. In a late address on missionary methods in
India, Rev. Phillips Brooks said: "That which makes people
distrust foreign missions is the testimony that the Europeans in
India will not trust the Christianized Indian. It is not strange
that some poor creature should bring discredit on the religion he
professes. He worships in strange houses and in a strange way. He
kneels in American-style churches and is taught by men full of
American ideas. Christianity will never be the religion of India
until it comes there imbued with the spirit of the day. In time
there must come forth an Indian Christianity, rich, full of power
and goodness. The missionaries want this, and are perfectly aware
it must come. The influence that now goes to India carries with it
the curse as well as the blessing. Let the divisions of church
creeds be kept at home, and _let the Indian religion be
developed from within_."

We visited several mosques, but they are such poor affairs
compared to those of India that we took little interest in them.
While the other countries we have thus far visited have all
appeared stranger than expected, this is not so with Egypt.
Everything seems to be just as I had imagined it. We know too much
about the land of the Pharaohs to be taken thoroughly by surprise.
Perhaps there is something in our having seen so much that our
perceptions are no longer as keen as when we landed in Japan. The
appetite for sight-seeing becomes sated, like any other, and I
fear we are not as impressionable as before. So we decide not to
visit Turkey and Greece upon this trip but to take these when
fresh. The crowds of squalid wretches who surround us at every
turn, clamoring for backsheesh; the mud hovels in which they
manage to live, and the coarse food upon which they exist; the
mass of greasy, unwashed rags which hang loosely upon them--such
things no longer excite our wonder, or even our pity. We have seen
so much of such misery before that I fear we begin to grow
callous.

Cairo, as a city, is most picturesque, with its commanding
citadel, and its hundreds of mosques with their slender spires and
conspicuous minarets; while surrounding all this in the desert lie
the ruins of older cities and of tombs and temples innumerable.
The Desert of Sahara reaches to the very gates of the city on the
east. The city lies between that and the Nile; then comes a narrow
strip of green about ten miles in width, and after that the
boundless Libyan Desert. The Pyramids stand upon the very edge of
this desert, so that it is sand, sand, sand! everywhere around the
city of the Caliphs, save and except this little green border
along the Nile. But indeed the whole of Egypt is only a narrow
green ribbon stretching along the river for some six hundred
miles, and widening at the delta, where the waters divide and
reach the sea by various channels. All the rest is sand. Egypt has
not more cultivable soil than Belgium, and would not make a fair
sized State with us.

The Khedive Ismail was determined to make Cairo a miniature Paris,
and we see much that recalls Paris to us. The new boulevards, the
opera-house, circus, cafes, new hotel--all show how much has
already been done in this direction; but he is in hard straits
just now, and the cry there, as elsewhere, is for retrenchment and
reform. The new streets are Parisian, but it is in the old, narrow
streets of the city that one sees oriental life distinctively
Egyptian in its character. Indeed these are sights of Cairo which
I enjoy most. Muffled ladies pass by, resembling nothing I can
think of so much as big black bats as they sit man-fashion on
their donkeys, wrapped in black silk cloaks; men in gorgeous
silks, also on donkeys, ride along, while laden camels and asses
carrying large panniers of clover slowly pick their way through
the crowd. Harem ladies, too (there is the weight which pulls
Egypt down), roll slowly by in their covered carriages, preceded
by the running Lyces. I never saw such a miscellaneous throng in
any street before.

The great event of a visit to Cairo is Pyramid Day. The Pyramids
are eight miles distant, and an early start has to be made to
insure a return in season. Yesterday was our day. These wonders do
not impress one at first--few really stupendous works ever do; and
even when at their base you think but meanly of their magnitude,
so much so that you never hesitate as to whether you will ascend
Cheops, the largest. Three Arabs, whose duty it is to assist you,
are at once assigned to you by the Sheikh; two of these take your
hands, while the third stands behind to "boost" you up at the
moment the others pull. It is a hard climb even when so assisted,
and many who start are fain to content themselves with getting up
one third the distance. I think I rested three times in making the
ascent, and each time I found my feeling of disappointment growing
beautifully less; while by the time the shout came from my Arabs
announcing that they were on the top stone, I was filled with
respectful admiration for Cheops, I assure you, and whatever one
may say about the equator, I feel sure no one will ever hear me
speak disrespectfully of the Pyramids.

They are without doubt the greatest masses ever built by man.
Cheops is four hundred and fifty feet high, and covers thirteen
acres at the base, tapering to the top, which is only about thirty
feet square, where one false step would be certain death, as,
contrary to my opinion at first, I saw that one in falling could
not possibly rest on any of the layers of projecting stone. I do
not like high places, and I felt, while on the top, I would give a
handsome sum just to be safe on level ground again. But I got
down, or rather was taken down by my three attendants, without
much difficulty, and after luncheon we went into the centre of the
pile--a work of considerable trouble--and saw the sarcophagus.
Attempts have been made to invest the Pyramids with some
mysterious meaning, but, I take it, there will be no more of this,
since an explanation is now given which meets every objection.
They are simply the tombs of various kings, and differ in size
because the kings ruled for different periods of time. The mode of
procedure was this: When a king came to the throne he began to
build his tomb; perhaps this was an excellent way of keeping
before him the fact that he also must surely die, and that ere
long; successive courses of stone were built around the pile, one
course per year, and when the king died the building ceased, his
successor taking care to finish the course under progress at the
death of his predecessor; hence the great size of Cheops, for the
monarch who constructed it reigned forty-two years and built his
forty-two courses. This Pyramid is either sixty-five hundred or
five thousand years old, according as you decide for one or
another mode of computation. Either date will, however, entitle it
to the honors of a hoary old age. The old Arabian proverb, "That
all things fear Time, but Time fears the Pyramids," holds good no
longer, for "the tooth of Time" is slowly but surely
disintegrating even these masses. The entire finishing course of
huge stone blocks, from top to bottom of Cheops, has already
crumbled away, and lies in dust at the base. This is also the case
with the second in size, except that a portion still clings around
its top; this will fall some day, and leave it stripped like its
greater neighbor.

Our Arab guide told us, as he pointed to the numerous monograms
carved on the top of Cheops, that a lover who cuts the initials of
his adored there, and calls upon Allah to prosper his suit, is
certain to win her. Would you believe it, soon after this I saw
Vandy secretly carving away.

The Sphinx--the mysterious Sphinx--which has baffled all
inquisitive inquirers for centuries without number, stands in the
sand only a. short distance from Cheops. Imagine, if you can, with
what feelings one gazes upon it. It is as old as the Pyramids,
perhaps older, and there it still looks out upon the green and
fertile banks of the Nile with the Libyan Desert behind. Its
countenance has the same benignant cast, but it tells neither of
sorrow nor of anger, neither of triumph nor of defeat. It tells
you of no human passion, and yet seems to tell you of all--_the
end of all_--and yet it is not a sad face. It is every thing
and yet nothing. I never was so utterly unable to vivify an image
with at least some imaginings. It could be made one thing or
another, but no sooner had I thought it indicated one sentiment
than a second look made the idea seem absurd. Like so many
countless thousands before me, I gave it up. You cannot extract
anything from that face. I thought the lesson might be in its
position, and I pleased myself with drawing one from that. There
this mystery stands, gazing only upon what is rich and fertile and
instinct with life, the life-giving Nile rolling before it, and
the fields of golden grain in view. Its back turned resolutely to
the dreary sandy waste of death behind; and so it said to me as
plainly as if it could speak, This is your lesson: let the dead
past bury its dead; look forward only upon that which has life and
grows steadily towards perfection. It is upon the bright things of
life we must fix our gaze if we would be of use in our day and
generation.

When in Alexandria we visited with deep interest the site of the
famous Alexandrian Library, in which lay stored the most precious
treasures of the world. Had it escaped destruction, how many
questions which have vexed scholars would never have arisen, and
how much ground which it has been necessary for genius to
reconquer would have come to us as our heritage!

The Cleopatra's Needle now in New York, the counterpart of the one
in London, was still in Alexandria when we were there. Seventeen
hundred years before Christ this huge monolith, which is cut out
of solid rock, was erected at Heliopolis, and it was transported
thence several hundred miles to its present site. It measures
sixty-eight feet in height, and is not less than eight feet square
at its base--one solid shaft of granite; but this is exceeded by
the one still at Thebes, which is a hundred feet high. It struck
me as a notable coincidence that the ingenious Frenchman who first
proved the truth of the supposed hieroglyphic alphabet should have
done so by assuming that the name repeated so frequently upon a
certain stone extolling the virtues of Ptolemy Soter, must be that
of the famous Cleopatra, and so it proved. Thus this extraordinary
woman, who filled the world with her name during her life, and for
centuries after, once more renews her tenure by linking herself
with the world's history two thousand years after her death.

The museum in Cairo is said to comprise more Egyptian antiquities
than are possessed in the world besides. It is filled with
mummies, sarcophagi, jewelry, coins and statues, one wooden statue
shown being no less than four thousand six hundred years old.
Anything less than five thousand years of age one gets to consider
rather too modern to suit his taste. Upon some of the lids of the
tombs the inscriptions are as fresh as if cut yesterday. Egypt
furnishes the earliest records of our race, because the dry sands
of the desert on each side of the Nile, blowing over the cities of
the past until these were completely buried, hermetically sealed
them, and this preserved them from decay, and would have done so
for ages yet to come. Is it any wonder that this narrow strip,
filled with buried cities, should have given rise to a body of men
who devote themselves to the search for rich spoils of the past
and to deciphering the inscriptions? You meet occasionally an
Egyptologist, and seem to know him instinctively.

But grand as is Egypt's past, and varied as her fortunes have
been, it may surely be said that never during all her misfortunes
has she occupied a position as deplorable as that which saddens
the traveller of today. If any one wants to see what personal rule
in its fullest development is capable of producing, let him visit
Egypt. The condition of its finances is notorious, but we did not
expect to witness such convincing proofs of insolvency.

The Khedive has been maintaining a standing army of sixty thousand
men, but it has not been paid for more than two years.
Retrenchment having been insisted upon by England and France, it
was resolved to reduce the force to some eight thousand, and
orders of dismissal were accordingly issued. But about two hundred
officers who were in Cairo and had not yet been paid, entered the
Prime Minister's chambers a few days before our arrival in the
city, clamoring for their dues, and refused to leave until paid.
Some slight violence was even used toward that functionary, and
the English agent, who came manfully to his assistance, was
roughly pushed about. It was finally arranged to pay all dismissed
soldiers two months of their arrears. The train upon which we
travelled from Cairo carried many of these men to their homes.
While the army is not paid, we see on every hand unmistakable
proofs of the Khedive's reckless personal extravagance. Here lies
his grand steam yacht rotting in the harbor. In the station we
noticed the imperial cars stowed away; on the river his large
summer boat; and every other remarkably fine house in Cairo seemed
to be one or another of the Khedive's palaces or harems. The man
does not seem to have had the faintest idea of what was due to his
country, or, even worse, what was due to himself. But take the
greatest and best man in the world, surround him by people who
assure him morn, noon and night that he differs from other men,
and has a born right to their obedience--make a khedive, or czar,
or king out of him--if kind nature has not made a fool of him at
the start, men will do it, and if he has brains, brutality will
soon be added to his folly. If he hasn't brains, then he becomes
the fool pure and simple. George Washington himself would have
been spoiled by royal notions in less than six months--good as he
was and sound republican to boot.

One becomes indignant with a people so supine as to endure such
waste and oppression. Everything is taxed, and the masses of the
people are ground down to the lowest stage compatible with mere
animal existence. England and France have been compelled recently
to take strong measures in order to prevent impending ruin. The
Khedive not long since dismissed the only one of his ministers who
seemed to comprehend the state of affairs, but I see the faint
remonstrance of these powers has sufficed to reinstate him; in
other words, the Khedive has been told he is a figure-head, to
reign, not to govern, and we may hope for an improvement in
consequence. The population is only five millions, and it is
estimated that at least two millions more could be supported by
the country; so it seems that only good government is required to
restore Egypt to prosperity.

The tenure of land is an important question just now, and men's
minds are disposed to give the subject consideration. Mr. George's
exciting book has attracted surprising attention. "Thou shalt not
sell the land of the Lord thy God for ever," seems likely to prove
correct. Egypt has a land history of much significance. Anciently
the land was the property of the priests, and of the king and the
military class. Although there were no castes, still the fact that
the son usually followed his father's occupation, served the
purpose of caste. Even Joseph did not purchase the land of the
priests when he bought all the rest. Before the time of Mehemet
Ali, say up to about a hundred years ago, a kind of feudal system
prevailed, but by the massacre of the Mamelukes the feudal system
was destroyed. Mehemet Ali seized almost all the landed property,
and gave the owners pensions for life. There is scarcely such a
thing as private tenure of land now in Egypt.

This little bit of cultivated land has actually borrowed in the
last fifteen years no less than L80,000,000 sterling
($400,000,000). Twelve hundred miles of railway have been built,
and numerous canals, harbors, and lighthouses constructed; but the
amount spent in useful works bears but a small proportion to that
squandered. The greatest item of all, however, is the discount
paid upon the five successive loans by which funds were obtained.
None of these loans cost less than 12 per cent, per annum, while
the one for railways cost 26 per cent, per annum. These rates, I
believe, are calculated upon the issue prices; what commissions
the bankers received is unknown. A report upon the finances states
that the Government received only about one-half the amount of the
loans.

I have referred to the discontent which had shown itself in the
army during our stay in Cairo. How rapidly events have travelled
since then! The rise of a popular leader, Arabi, who possessed the
confidence, or at least, who was accepted by the people as their
only instrument of reform,--effectually put down by the English
Government, which surely was misled by its agents in Egypt.

Now that England has been so foolish as to interfere, but two
courses are open. She must either rule Egypt as she does India,
or, what would be infinitely better both for Egypt and for
England, retire, and allow the people of Egypt to undertake the
management of their own affairs. This would be unfortunate for the
bondholders, no doubt, but it would sooner or later secure for
Egypt those institutions for which she is suited. I am convinced
that England is to see the day, and that ere long, when she will
bitterly repent ever having thrown her power in the scale against
men who revolted at a state of affairs against which revolt was
meritorious, and gave to the world the best proof that sufficient
sound timber existed in Egypt to form the nucleus of firm national
institutions. England's position in Egypt is all wrong. She of all
nations should know that there are stages in the life of nations
where oppression can be overthrown only by violent means. Ah! John
Bright proved himself here once more the true statesman. Had his
advice been followed, how different might have been the result!
But ere the Egyptian question is settled we may see stranger
events still than those which have surprised us.

The cry from the moment you set foot in Egypt until the steamer
sails is "Backsheesh! Backsheesh!" Give! give! give! Crowds
surround you at every place, and from child to withered eld it is
an incessant chorus. If one is weak enough to give a piastre he is
done for; the crowd increases, and the roars of the beggars with
it. There is no place in Egypt which can be enjoyed, owing to this
nuisance; even on the top of the Pyramid the evil is unabated.
Travellers must be to blame for such an annoyance. For our part we
resolved never to give anything to a beggar, and adhered strictly
to the rule, which preserved us from many a fierce attack; but the
objects begging were sometimes piteous-looking enough to haunt
one.

The surest means of obtaining a livelihood as a beggar in Egypt is
to feign idiocy, which, I am told, is frequently done. Idiots are
regarded as saints, and are never restricted in their movements,
maniacs alone being confined, and they are often met with in the
streets. My Swedenborgian friends might account for the absence of
sense being held proof positive of the saintly character by urging
that idiots were certainly free from one of the worst evils of
this generation denounced by the Swedish Seer as "self-derived
intelligence."

The never ending work of creation is finely illustrated in the
remarkable depression of the northern shore of Egypt, which is
continually going on, notwithstanding the vast deposits from the
many mouths of the Nile annually discharged upon it, while on the
southern shore, near Suez, a contrary phenomenon is observable.
The consequence of this movement is seen in the ruins of places on
the Mediterranean shore, and the drying up of large portions of
the Gulf of Suez. Indeed the bed of the Red Sea may be traced for
miles north of the town of Suez, which is now at the head of the
gulf, and places far north of the town were on the coast in
historic times. An equally remarkable change is observable in the
level of the Nile. Two thousand years B.C. it is found that at
Semneh the mean height of the famous river was twenty-three feet
greater than it is to-day. Imagine what results would flow from a
change of the level of the Mississippi twenty-three feet higher or
lower than now! It would change the continent. While such
startling changes are found right under our own eyes, surely we do
not require the "doctrine of catastrophes" to explain the creation
of this little ball--the earth! The silent, irresistible,
unchanging laws of Nature suffice.

We arrived too late to get a run up the Nile, as the boats had
ceased to ply for the season. There remained but Cairo and
Alexandria to visit, and a few days spent at each place exhausts
the sights; but we concluded that nothing could be more enjoyable
than a three-months' sail upon the Nile, in one's own boat,
breathing the remarkably pure and dry air as it comes from the
desert, moving day by day from one to another scene of the far
past, and at night enjoying the unequalled sunsets, when it seems,
as some one has beautifully said, that "the day was slowly dying
of its own glory." This is the trip of trips for an invalid, or
for one overtaxed by work or oppressed with sorrow; and for a
bridal tour--to give the lovers plenty of time and opportunity to
become thoroughly acquainted with each other--it can be highly
recommended.

The rapid rise of our western rivers is very different from the
gradual swelling of the Nile, which begins at Khartoum, at the
junction of the White and Blue Niles, as early as April each year,
but which is not felt at Cairo until after the summer solstice,
while the greatest height is not reached till autumn. A good flood
gives a rise of forty feet at the first cataract, and about
twenty-five at Cairo; a scanty rise is when only between eighteen
or twenty feet occurs at Cairo. The inundation is good if it is
between twenty-four and twenty-seven feet; if beyond the latter it
becomes a destructive flood. Upon such a narrow margin--the rise
of a few feet more or less in the Nile--depends the entire crop of
Egypt! Once for a period of seven years (A.D. 457-464), the rise
failed and seven years of famine ensued. A great engineering work,
designed to regulate the inundation by means of a _barrage_
across both branches of the river below Cairo, was begun some
years ago, but, I believe, has been abandoned. When Egypt reaches
good government from within herself, not through foreigners, one
of its first works should be to complete the barrage. Surplus
water will then be allowed free escape, and inundations prevented.
When the flow is scanty, egress at the river mouths will be
retarded, and thus Egypt will be secured regular harvests. We
watch men at work everywhere raising water from narrow ditches to
higher levels, that all parts may be irrigated from the fruitful
Nile. We could get no estimate of the amount of water which one
man can raise in a day; but when human labor is so cheap, we
guessed that it was, upon the whole, an economical mode. At all
events a complete revolution in the management of land, and
probably of its tenure, must precede the general use of machinery
for this purpose. The "shadoof" of today is the same in form as
that used by the ancient Egyptians. Two columns of mud, or brick,
erected at the side of the ditch, support a beam of wood, across
which is a pole with a weight at one end, and a rude wooden bowl-
shaped bucket, suspended by a stick, at the other. A man stands
under the bucket and pulls it down into the water. The weight
helps him to push it up to the ditch above, where it is emptied.
The operation is very quickly performed, and the bucket kept
constantly going. It would be hard to beat these ancient Egyptian
shadoofs by any device requiring human labor where the amount of
water required is small. Water-wheels, driven by bullocks or cows,
and sometimes by one animal only, are sometimes used. There is
also a double shadoof worked by two men, and even steam pumps are
used in extreme cases where the volume of water desired is
unusually large. Steam, no doubt, is ultimately to drive out the
shadoof, ancient as it is. We had a strange meeting at Cairo upon
entering the breakfast-room the morning after our arrival. Whom
should we be placed opposite to but my friend the Rev. Mr. D., of
Dunfermline, my aunty's minister, nae less! He was _en route_
to the Holy Land with his father-in-law; but we had several days
together at Cairo, and talked upon many subjects, from theology to
town affairs. I had received a telegram the day of his departure
which told me my mother was to sail from New York that very day to
join me in Scotland, as had been arranged, and we drank her health
and wished her _bon voyage_ in good style.

Before bidding farewell to the East, I wish to indulge in just a
few general reflections. Life there lacks two of its most
important elements--the want of intelligent and refined women as
the companion of man, and a Sunday. It has been a strange
experience to me to be for several months without the society of
some of this class of women--sometimes many weeks without even
speaking to one, and often a whole week without even seeing the
face of an educated woman. And, bachelor as I am, let me confess
what a miserable, dark, dreary, and insipid life this would be
without their constant companionship! This brings everything that
is good in its train, everything that is bright and elevating. I
cannot satisfy myself as to what the man of the East has to
struggle for, since he has dethroned woman and practically left
her out of his life. To see a wealthy Chinaman driving along in
his carriage alone was pitiable. His efforts had been successful,
but for what? There was no joy in his world. The very soul of
European civilization, its crown and special glory, lies in the
elevation of woman to her present position (she will rise even
higher yet with the coming years), and this favor she has repaid a
thousand-fold by making herself the fountain of all that is best
in man. In life, without her there is nothing. Much as the lot of
woman in the East is to be deplored, that of man is still more
deplorable. The revenge she takes is terrible, for she drags down
with her, in her debasement, the higher life of man. I had noted
the absence of music as one great want. Not an opera nor a
concert--not even a hand-organ. Scarcely a sweet sound in all our
journey. When we found an English church or a regimental band, we
rejoiced. I went to hear the organ upon every occasion, and was
seldom absent when the band played; but were women there as with
us, wouldn't music spring forth also! so that even this want I am
disposed to attribute to the first cause.

The absence of a regularly recurring day of rest ranks next in
importance, I believe, in the list of causes which keep the East
down in the scale of nations. With few exceptions, the race is
doomed to a life of unremitting toil--from morning till night, and
every day without respite; for festival and fete days recurring at
long, irregular intervals are no substitute for the one regular
day to which labor looks forward with us. The prospect of one day
of rest frequently intervening gives a toiler something bright to
look forward to, without which his life must stretch before him as
one unceasing, unvarying drag. In this one blessed day his slavery
ceases, the shackles fall. He is no longer a brute--fed and
clothed solely because of his physical powers, his capacity to
bear burdens--but a higher being, with tastes, pleasures, friends.
Life becomes worth living. The man puts on his best clothes--and
there is much in this--the woman gives her cottage an extra
brushing up. Something extra is prepared for dinner--there is a
great deal in this, too--and, in short, the day is marked by a
hundred little differences from those of labor--a stroll in the
fields, a visit to relatives, or a meeting with neighbors at
church, all in their best; and then the swelling organ and the
choir--these things lie closely at the root of all improvements;
and if ever the race is to be lifted to a higher platform--and who
shall dare doubt it?--the weekly day of rest will prove itself an
agency in the good work only second to the elevation of woman.

The best mode of improving its most precious hours for the toiling
masses is therefore a question of infinite moment, apart
altogether from the question of its divine character, and viewed
only as a human enactment of the highest wisdom. It would seem
clear that to make this only respite from manual labor a day
exclusively set apart for the mournful duty of bemoaning our
manifold shortcomings--which must at best give rise to gloomy
thoughts--would defeat the purposes I have indicated. I want a
compromise--church service in the morning, with a sermon "leaning
to the side of mercy," as Sidney Smith suggested, which meant that
it should not exceed twenty minutes, for, as one wit says, "a
minister who can't strike ile in twenty minutes should quit
_boring_"--and then the fields and streams for the toilers
who are cooped up in factories and workshops all the week long, or
a visit to picture galleries, museums, or to musical concerts of a
high order in huge centres--for in London and a village it is not
the same question at all--to anything that would tend to brighten
their existence. I am now convinced that there is an important
change to be made in the mode of keeping our Sundays--the
cessation of labor, as far as it is possible, to remain a cardinal
point, but better facilities to be provided for cultivating the
higher tastes of our poor workers, that the day may be to them
indeed "the golden jewel which clasps the circle of the week."

One more observation upon the East and I am done: the work that
England is doing there. You know that she has in one way or
another obtained the keys to the East. Some islands she owns; some
small strips of the mainland she also has acquired and governs; at
Shanghai, Hong Kong, and other points in China; at Singapore,
Penang, Ceylon, Aden, Malta, and indeed all through our journey,
we stand now and then on British soil. And wherever the meteor
flag floats, there you find order, freedom, schools, churches,
dispensaries, clean streets, hospitals, newspapers, justice; and
under that flag you will find thousands of Chinamen and Malays,
Indians, Cingalese, Arabs--indeed men of all races--settled and
enjoying the blessings of good government. No revolution there, no
slavery, no arbitrary arrest, nor forced levy. As a native lawyer
in India said to me--he talked freely because of our American
look--"There is between natives under English rule perfect
justice; but," he added, "every one must behave himself. There is
no war nor plundering when one settles under them, for these
English _won't stand any nonsense, and they will have
peace_."

England, therefore, has planted throughout the East small models
of perfectly governed little States, enjoying all the blessings of
the highest civilization. Daily and hourly these teach their
lesson to the native races, and when they do acquire this
lesson--and who that believes in the progress of mankind can doubt
but the day must come?--they will look westward with grateful
hearts and say, "All this we owe to thee, noble England!"

But while this is true, there is another phase of England's work
to which I have referred in my remarks upon India. The source of
England's good work springs from example. It is where the native
races are drawn to her standard, as at the many points named,
where their freedom is not destroyed, that great results can alone
be looked for. This is the very reverse of England's position in
India. She stands there as the destroyer of native institutions,
and forces her views upon an unwilling people wholly unprepared to
receive them, instead of resting, as at Hong Kong, Singapore,
Aden, and such places, saying to the natives, "Come, try our
system, and, if you like it, remain and share its benefits."
Nothing but good can result from the latter, and nothing really
good can flow from the former; the injury done must more than
absorb any temporary gains. Force is no remedy; and some of these
years, unless the ablest natives are induced to participate in the
government of India, and soon allowed the chief control, England
will rise to a rude awakening.

       *       *       *       *       *

ALEXANDRIA, Friday, March 14.

Off at nine this morning for Naples, taking Sicily _en
route_. The voyage was a smooth one, and we landed at Catania
upon the morning of the fourth day. As we stepped ashore we felt
in a moment that we were once more within the bounds of
civilization. What a difference between this and the East! And
there frowned Mount Etna, ten thousand feet above the sea level,
thirty miles distant, and yet seemingly so near we thought that we
could almost walk over to its base after breakfast. We ascended a
small hill in the centre of the city--which, by the way, has a
population of a hundred thousand--and there lay Sicily spread out
before us in all its wondrous beauty. Lemon and orange groves in
full bearing, and fields of vines just budding; and in the town
clean paved streets and pavements, which are unknown in the East;
people with shoes and stockings on; statues and fountains, and a
good old cathedral; harps and violins, and the chime of church
going bells. Ah! Western civilization is not a mistake, nor a
myth, nor a thing of doubtful value, as we can testify. At least
so thought two happy travellers in Sicily that bright balmy
morning, as they felt how blessed a thing it was to be once more
in a civilized country.

The pretty island of Sicily (Sechelia, as the Italians pronounce
it) contains nearly three millions of people--nearly as many as
Scotland--and supports them almost entirely by the produce of the
land, for manufactures are little known. The olive and the vine
are everywhere, and the crops of oranges and lemons go to most
parts of the world. An English gentleman told us he had bought
oranges in the season for one cent per dozen. There is one item of
export of rather peculiar character--sulphur--which is obtained
from the volcano. We saw it drawn through the streets in large
blocks.

Only two hundred years ago an eruption of Mount Etna took place,
and 27,000 people were buried by the lava. We saw where the stream
had rushed down from the crater through part of the town, and far
into the sea--almost a mile in width, and thirty miles from its
source, bearing destruction to everything in its course, and yet
to-day fine new houses stand upon the cold lava, and away up and
along the sides of the volcano for miles are to be seen cottages
clustering thickly together, the inmates busily engaged in
cultivating their vineyards. It was only a few days ago--the
monster gave a warning and shook these houses; but they still "sit
under their vine and sing the merry songs of peace to all their
neighbors"--these merry, light-hearted Sicilians!--as if they had
Mount Etna under perfect control.

The railway skirts the shores of the island for its entire
length--some fifty miles--and a more beautiful ride is not to be
seen in all the world. It is a succession of fine old castles, in
perfect ruin, upon every petty promontory, and we go through
nothing but orange and lemon groves and vineyards. We pass at the
base of Mount Etna; but although all was smiling in the valleys
below, its top was enveloped in dark clouds and busy with the
thunder and the storm.

Messina is a very quaint Italian city. The funeral services of a
distinguished lady were in progress when we stepped into the
cathedral, which was illuminated with hundreds of candles--I think
I might say almost a thousand--the interior being one mass of
light, which shone with strange effect upon the rich black velvet
with which the walls were draped. A lady in our party counted the
carriages as they passed, and told us there were fifty-three, most
of which would compare favorably with those of New York or London.
This will give you some idea of the richness of Messina, which we
had thought to be an unimportant town.

The Sicilians are strict Roman Catholics and completely under the
dominion of that faith. There is scarcely a trace of dissent to be
found. When we were about to sail from Messina for Naples a priest
walked upon the deck and collected contributions from the devout
passengers, for which in return he was expected to give to our
good ship the august protection of Holy Mother Church. We noticed
that all the passengers contributed and received his blessing with
much solemnity. Faith is still there. They were going to
sea--probably a first experience to most if not all of them, and
were naturally apprehensive. Should we have a stormy night, no
doubt, notwithstanding their bargain with the priest, some will
resolve with good Dame Partington that under like circumstances
if ever she set her foot on dry land she would never again trust
herself "so far out of the reach of Providence." But my mother
remembers well that when a member of the congregation was about to
start from Dunfermline to London, a rare event in those days,
though not so very long ago, that his safety was always prayed for
in church. I mentioned this to Vandy when he was deploring the
ignorance and, as he thought, the impiety of the Sicilians. We are
not entirely free from superstition ourselves, and were in the
last generation where the Sicilians are in this.

The scene in "The Tempest," the enchanted isle, must have been in
the neighborhood of Sechelia, and surely no fitter region in all
the world could be found; indeed I found sweet Sechelia so
enchanting that I voted it the very spot, and selected my
Prospero's Cave on the glittering shore within sight of Mount
Etna.

       *       *       *       *       *

BAY OF NAPLES, Thursday, March 20.

Early morning! Yes, my dear friends, it is round. Here stands
Mount Vesuvius in full view this morning, making for itself pure
white clouds of steam, which float in the otherwise clear,
cloudless sky of Italy. No entering the crater now as we did
before, for the volcano is no longer at rest. Vandy and I shake
hands and recall our pledge made in the crater years ago, and say,
"Well, that is now fulfilled, and may life only have for us in its
unknown future another such five months of unalloyed happiness
(save where the dark shades of death among friends at home have
saddened the hours) as those we have been so privileged to enjoy."

It is well never to be without something to look forward to, and
speculate upon; and by a happy chance Vandy and I have hit upon
our next excursion, when we shall have earned another vacation by
useful work. The very thought of it already brings us pleasure.
And so, all hail, sunny Italia! What a picture this Bay of Naples
is! We sail past our former haunts, Capri and Sorrento, and are
soon in our hotel at Naples, where we are delighted to rejoin our
friends.

From this time forth it is impossible but that a change must occur
in the character of these notes. There is a first time to
everything, and it is first impressions which I have endeavored
honestly to convey; but my first impressions of Europe were
obtained years ago. The gloss and enthusiasm of novelty are
wanting. The sober second thought is proverbial; but there is a
sober second sight as well, and it is this I am about to take.
Besides this, Europe is more familiar to everybody than the East.
Many know it through personal experience, and I shall therefore
content myself with giving the salient features of our homeward
progress from this point.

We find Naples, Sorrento, Capri, and all the pretty spots around
the bay much improved since our last visit. The people seem to us
to be remarkably fine-looking, but perhaps this is mainly owing to
the miserable races we have been seeing lately. The museum which
contains the principal treasures found at Pompeii and Herculaneum
is greatly improved, and one has no difficulty now in determining
just how the people of those cities lived. There are even models
of the houses shown. The frescoes and sculptures are far finer
than I had remembered them, and indeed there are so many articles
of furniture and domestic utensils that one cannot help admitting
that those who argue that man travels in a circle just as the
world goes round, and never advances, have some ground for their
theory in these remarkable productions of the first century. We
are in the land of music, sure enough!--Here is the list of operas
to be performed to-night, apart from numerous dramatic
performances: "Norma," "Sonnambula," "La Belle Helene," "Martha."
You will please take it for granted that our nights here, with few
exceptions, will be spent hearing one or another opera, for of all
the pleasures of civilized society which we have missed most in
our travels, we rank first after the absence of refined women the
total absence of music. We hunger for sweet sounds.

We were fortunate this time in getting into the Blue Grotto--the
sea being quite smooth. The reflections upon the rocky roof were
not as fine as we expected; but Miss N. pronounced the water "the
prettiest blue that ever was," and she is an authority upon color.
While at Capri we ascended to the villa of Tiberius, on the edge
of a perpendicular cliff nearly two thousand feet high. It was
from this rock that ruler was wont to throw his victims into the
sea. He found they never troubled him again. And now I write amid
the orange groves of Sorrento, where we have been spending a few
days.

We have just finished, in company with our friends, a three-days'
excursion to Paestum, embracing the famous drive along the coast to
Amalfi. Certainly I know nothing of the kind in the world equal to
this road in grandeur, and if any of you ever visit Naples I advise
you to let nothing interfere with your going to Amalfi. At Sorrento
we joined our friends, Mr. H. and party, and our Windsor Hotel
delegation was further and happily augmented by Mr. and Mrs. I. and
family. Can you wonder that our daily excursions were delightful?

       *       *       *       *       *

ROME, March 26.

Rome once more! What a change! A miniature Paris has been added to
old Rome since we first saw it, and even old Rome itself is
modernized completely. Much of the picturesque is lost, but well
lost, since it brings us clean streets, improved dwellings, and
all the accompaniments of progress; but, notwithstanding its now
greater likeness to modern cities, it is not with these Rome vies.
Her empire is not of to-day, but over the mighty past she alone
holds undisputed sway, and the spirit of ages gone still infuses
itself into everything in Rome. I thought even modern structures
were unlike their fellows elsewhere, as if the mere fact that they
stood in Rome invested them with a peculiar halo of classic
dignity and importance. Then Rome still has to boast of so many of
the best things which the world has to show. No other cathedral is
so grand as St. Peter's nor so beautiful as St. Paul's; no other
"bit of color" is equal to the Transfiguration; no other heroic
statue is to be compared with the Augustus; nowhere else is so
sweet a girl-face as the Cenci; no other group is to be named with
the Laocoon, no other fresco with the Aurora; and where is there
another Moses, or Apollo Belvedere, or Antinous, or where is there
vocal music so heavenly as that of the Pope's choir? Nowhere. And
so it comes that the world still flocks to Rome, and must continue
its pilgrimage hither to this Mecca for a thousand years to come;
and artists by the score, day after day, multiply copies of these
wonders of art, the recognized "best" in their various classes
which man has yet brought forth. All these works, and others
unmentioned, I returned to with enhanced pleasure. They all seemed
greater and finer to me than when I saw them before. I had not
forgotten them, while the mass of mediocre works had left no
trace.

It is thus that the true fire of genius vindicates its right to
immortality. Generations may come and go, fashions and tastes may
change, but "a thing of beauty" remains "a joy forever." While the
statues and pictures of Rome, therefore, gave me far greater
pleasure than before, I have to confess that the historical
associations gave me much less. When in Rome before I was
overflowing with Shakespeare, Byron and Macaulay, and would wander
away alone and recite to myself on the appropriate sites the
passages connected with them. This time I fear our friends proved
too congenial. We dwelt too much in the happy present to give
ourselves up to the historical past; but I do not think one gets
the sweetest juices out of Rome unless he gives way to the
melancholy vein now and then, and "stalks apart in joyless
reverie."

Another reason for the difference suggests itself. One fresh from
Egypt, where he has been digging among the five thousand years
B.C., and lost in amazement at what the race was even then
producing, must experience some difficulty in getting up a
respectable amount of enthusiasm for structures so recent as the
time of Christ; the "rascally comparative" intrudes to chill it
with its cold breath.

There is a third reason, perhaps--and reasons do seem as plenty as
blackberries, now that I begin to write them down--we are so near
home the echoes of business affairs begin to sound in our ears. We
snuff the battle as it were afar off. It is impossible to become
so entirely absorbed in the story of the Cenci as to prevent the
morning's telegram from home intruding, and so it came about that
this time we did less moralizing than before. We were fortunate in
being in Rome during Easter Week, which gave us an opportunity to
hear the best music; and certainly there is no choir for vocal
music which can rank with that of the Pope. It is the only choir I
ever heard which I felt the finest organ would spoil. It produces
a strange and powerful effect, the music itself seeming to be of a
peculiar order unlike any other. One of our young ladies,
describing her feelings to a friend, said that at one time she
felt she was really in heaven; but when the "Miserere" broke
forth, she knew she was only a poor sinner struggling to get
there.

We visited, with our friends, the various studios. In painting
there does not appear to be a high standard of excellence. The
Roman school does not stand well, but in statuary it is better. A
young American artist, Mr. Harnisch, seemed to me to be doing the
most creditable work. His busts have already given him reputation,
and he has a figure now in plaster, "Antigone," which I rate as
the best classical statue in process of completion which we saw.
This young artist is not probably as good a manager as some of his
more pretentious countrymen, and, I fear, we are to wait some time
before a Congressional committee can be induced to give him a
commission; but in the opinion of real Italian sculptors he is an
artist. There are those who have "adorned" our public edifices
with huge works to whom certainly no one outside of America would
apply the name. We shall hear of Mr. Harnisch by-and-by; he is
young, and can wait. I was highly gratified at making the
acquaintance of Dr. Smiles, author of "Self-Help," and that
favorite of mine, "The Scotch Naturalist," and other valued works.
He is a most delightful companion and a true Scotchman, and hadn't
we "a canny day thegether" at Tivoli! Through him I met Mr.
William Black, who is a small, young man, with a face that lights
up, and eyes that sparkle through his spectacles. Mr. Petty, R.A.,
and he were doing Italy together, and no doubt we are to see
traces of their travels in their respective lines ere long.

       *       *       *       *       *

FLORENCE, Wednesday, April 9.

We spent a few days in Florence, but it rained almost continually,
as indeed it has done all winter. This has been the most
disagreeable season ever known in Italy, we hear from every
quarter. Sight-seeing requires sunshine: but we nevertheless did
the galleries, and were delighted with the masterpieces for which
the city is famed. The statuary, however, is much inferior to that
of Rome. In the way of painting I was most interested in comparing
the numerous Madonnas of Raphael, and seeing how he, at last,
reached "the face of all the world" in the San Sisto. He seems to
have held as loyally as a true knight to his first love. His
Madonnas have all the same type of face. You could never hesitate
about their authorship. Emphatically they are one and all
"Raphael's Madonnas," and very much alike--even the one which the
Grand Duke loved so fondly as to take it about with him wherever
he travelled is only a little sweeter than the rest. It is a
strange fact that it was not by painting Madonnas at all the
master obtained his inspiration. He painted the portrait of a
lady, which is still seen in the Pitti Palace, from whose face he
drew the lacking halo of awe and sublimity. He idealized this
woman's face, and the San Sisto came to satisfy all one can
imagine about the Madonna. But the face of Christ! Who shall paint
it satisfactorily? No one. This is something beyond the region of
art. A divine-human face cannot be depicted, and all the efforts I
have seen are not only failures which one can lament, but many are
caricatures at which one becomes indignant. I was greatly pleased
that a true artist, Leonardo da Vinci, realized this, and painted
his Christ with averted head. Every great painter in older times
seems to have thought it incumbent upon him to paint a Christ, and
consequently you meet them everywhere. As for the "Fathers"
(_i.e._, Jehovah) one sees, these seem to me positively
sacrilegious. I wonder the arms of the men who ventured upon such
sacred ground did not wither at their sides. To paint old men with
tremendous white flowing beards--a cross between Santa Claus and
Bluebeard--and call them God! Here is materialism for you with a
vengeance. These audacious men forgot that _He_ was not seen
in the whirlwind, neither in the storm, but never seen at all;
only _heard in the still_, small voice.

Of course I visited Mrs. Browning's grave in Florence. I had the
melancholy satisfaction of hearing, from one who knew her
intimately, many details concerning her life here. Mr. Browning
left Florence the day after she died, leaving the house, his
books, papers, and even unfinished letters, as they were when he
was called to her bedside the night before, and has never
returned; nor has he ever been known to mention her name, or to
refer to the blow which left him alone in the world. He seems to
have been worthy even of a love like hers. We stayed over two days
at Milan to see friends, and while there ascended to see once more
the celebrated cathedral. It is finer--I do not say grander--but
much finer, especially as seen from the roof, than any other
building in Europe.

From Milan we went to Turin, and spent a day there, as we had
never seen that city. It is prettily situated, very clean, with
regular streets, but without any special objects of interest. The
splendid view of the snow-clad Alps, and the fertile valley of the
Po, as seen from the monastery, fully repaid us for the day given
to Turin. We leave Italy in the morning. It is impossible not to
like the country and to be deeply interested in its future. While
it has made considerable progress since the genius of Cavour made
it once more a nation, still its path is just now beset with
dangers. A standing army of six hundred thousand and all the
concomitants of royalty to maintain, and a large national debt
upon which interest has to be paid--these require severe
taxation, and even with this the revenues show a deficit. That
last resort, paper currency, has been sought, and now the
circulating medium--although "based on the entire property of the
nation," as our demagogues phrase it--is at a discount of ten per
cent., which threatens to increase.

But the chief trouble arises from the religious difficulty--that
sad legacy from the past, of which, fortunately, a new land like
America knows nothing. The Pope and all strict Catholics stand
coldly aloof from the government, ready to give trouble whenever
opportunity offers. But I have faith in Italy. She will conquer
her enemies, and once again be a great power worthy of her
glorious past. All her troubles, however, are not to seek.

       *       *       *       *       *

PARIS, Thursday, May 1.

Now comes somewhat of a return to the more prosaic side of life.
We made an excursion to the famous iron and steel works of the
Schneider Company at Creuzot. What a concern this is, and how
small we all are upon the other side of the Atlantic! Fifteen
thousand five hundred men are employed here. We saw fifteen steam
hammers in one shop. The mill for rolling only is 1,500 by 350
feet, filled with trains. The giant, however, is the 80-ton steam
hammer, with its huge appliances. Masses of steel 35 tons in
weight are handled as readily as we move a rail ingot. One ingot
of steel weighing 120 tons was shown to us. This monster hammer is
required only for armor plate and guns--war material. The happier
demands of peaceful industry are met with ordinary machinery. Long
may it be, therefore, before America can boast an engine of even
half the size. Our visit to Creuzot was both interesting and
instructive. Mr. Schneider and his officers were most cordial and
attentive to us.

We spend a few days in Paris, which shows even more than the other
cities we have revisited the march of improvement. It is farther
beyond competition in its line than it ever was. I appreciate its
attractions more than I have done upon previous visits; but one
must be exceptionally strong who can persist in leading an earnest
and useful life here, where so much exists to persuade one that
after all amusement is the principal thing to be sought for. Most
of the American residents seem to me to sink naturally to the
level of thinking most--or certainly talking most--of the newest
opera, or even the best ballet, or where is to be found the best
_table d'hote_; but, after all, what can a man do who leaves
his own country, and the duties incumbent upon him there, to
become a man about town here, with no work in the world to do.
Good Americans come here when they die, it is said. I think it
would be well for most of them if they did postpone their journey
until then.

As we have travelled through France bands of the "Reserves" have
been constantly seen repairing to their camps. Every Frenchman
now, without exception, must serve as a soldier and drill at least
one month every year. No substitutes are allowed. Soldiers!
soldiers everywhere! Not a petty town at which we have stayed over
night but has its barracks--its troops who parade its streets
every morning. The entire male population is being trained so as
most skilfully to murder, upon the first favorable opportunity,
such of their fellow-Christians who may happen to be called
Germans, while in Germany a similar state of affairs is rendered
necessary to prevent the success of their "brothers'" intention.
You see there was a frontier that was not "scientific," and it was
"rectified" a few years ago; but these rectifications, of all
things in the world, never remain rectified, and so we are to
awake some fine morning to find the "civilized" Christian (!)
nations (save the mark!) nobly engaged in butchering each other,
even if this is the nineteenth century and we all worship Christ
and have the same Father in heaven. That thoughtful educated
people, even in England and America, can still deliberately send a
son "to the army," to be taught the butchering trade, his victims
being human, always saddens me when I think of it. The progress of
the world has not only been slow but small, till the profession of
arms, as it is called, is held to be unfit except for men of
brutal natures.

In Italy it is much the same. She has 600,000 men under arms, and
is drilling others, while Russia has just ordered an addition to
her hosts exceeding five-fold the entire American army. England's
war expenditure this year exceeds that of only five years ago by
$30,000,000, which is more than America spends for her army
altogether. And so the whole of Europe is armed and arming, as if
conscious that a storm is about to burst, or at least that such a
stupendous drain upon her productive resources has to be endured
to insure safety. Happy America! she alone seems to occupy a
position free from grave and imminent dangers.

       *       *       *       *       *

LONDON.

Our next step brought us to monster London, where we attended the
interesting meeting of the British Iron and Steel Institute, and
being called upon as the only representative of American iron and
steel manufacturers present, I had to venture a few remarks.
Whatever England may be justly chargeable with in the past for her
neglect of scientific methods and the improvements of the day, it
is evident she now occupies the van in this respect.

No one could be present at these meetings without being impressed
with the amount and thoroughness of the scientific knowledge now
engaged in the iron and steel manufacture of Great Britain. Not
less remarkable seemed to me the willingness upon the part of all
to report and explain every advance made in the various processes
to their fellows. The old idea of trade secrets seems thoroughly
exploded, and a free interchange of practice and theory is now
seen to be the best for all. I cannot but believe that had the
manufacturers of America adopted this policy years ago, many
millions squandered in the erection of works at unsuitable
locations would have been saved. It struck me as strange that no
less a personage than Earl Granville, who has had charge of her
Majesty's foreign affairs and been leader in the House of Lords,
should have been in attendance and participated in these meetings.
The company also had the attendance of two dukes; but these were
Lord Granville's compeers only in title. All of the three,
however, rightfully claim to rank with us as iron-masters. The
Bessemer medal was presented this year to Peter Cooper, of New
York, much to the honor of the donors, I think.

For one shilling, any one curious to know something of the sights
of this London, can do so by purchasing a good-sized
volume--Dickens's London. A look at it will soon satisfy one how
true it is that compared to London all other cities are but
villages. It will very soon count four millions of people under
its sway. Every year one hundred thousand are added to the mass,
and not even depressed times seem to limit this increase. The
reason for this is patent; there is everything here that there is
elsewhere, and much that can be found nowhere else; in every
department of life, for earnest work in any special line, or for
amusement--for sight-seeing, study, or fashion--it is here that
the very best of everything is concentrated; the very cream of all
the world is here, because no other place is large enough or rich
enough to support it. To know the best that has been said and done
in the world of the past is no doubt much, as Matthew Arnold says,
but there is also much in seeing and living where the best of
to-day is said and done, and if possible in the company of those
who have said or done any of the best things in any line. Life
with godlike men on earth must be the best preparative for
companionship hereafter. This is possible in Britain only in
London, for the celebrities and their works are centred here. An
unusually large proportion of the population is of the wealthy
classes, for the height of the average Briton's ambition is, in
addition to the essential estate in the country, to be in
possession of a mansion in London. After these are acquired, and
his wife and daughters have been presented at court, any after-
successes may be regarded as details which ornament the solid
edifice of position attained; and truly, as far as I have seen
human life in any part of the world, I know of no state which in
itself seems capable of affording so much pleasure--were happiness
dependent upon external circumstances--as that which rewards
successful Britons when with their usual good sense they retire
from business.

If the owner of a large estate in Britain with its hundreds of
people, who are as it were, under his care, its pretty quaint
villages and honeysuckled cottages, its running brooks, its hedge-
rows and green fields, all giving him scope for change and
improvement--if such a man is not happy and does not enjoy life,
let him seek for some more favorable conditions in some other
planet than this, say I. I must not attempt to follow our steps
through England and Scotland, nor to tell you of the cordial
welcomes and thousand kind attentions bestowed upon us. We spent a
very, very happy month among dear kind friends, and never enjoyed
Merrie England more. My mother and Miss F. joined us in London,
and took care of us until we sailed for New York, which we did by
the new Cunard steamer Gallia, June 14th, reaching New York on the
24th, exactly eight months from the day we sailed out of the
Golden Gate. And now, June 25th, I write these lines at Cresson,
on the crest of the Alleghanies, having reached our starting point
and earned our right to fellowship with the favored fraternity of
globe-trotters.

The voyage round the world should be made sailing westward from
London or New York, as this gives the traveller the prevailing
winds in his favor; at least after he reaches New York, for the
Atlantic is never quite blessed with steady winds from the west.
The trade-winds waft the traveller on his way when he goes toward
the west; should he take the contrary direction and start via
England to the East, he must experience many rough days and nights
upon the sea. We saw the steamers from England battling against
the monsoon, which only served to push us steadily and smoothly
on. Let all my readers make due note of this--westward, not
eastward. Another even greater advantage, at least to those who,
like myself, are affected by heat, is obtained by taking the
westward course: the various countries can be visited in months
during which no extreme heat is possible. The best time to start
from San Francisco is early in September, so that Japan is reached
about the first of October, which is a delightful month in that
pretty toy-land, neither too hot nor too cold. A month will enable
the tourist to see all that is specially interesting--Yokohama,
Yeddo, Kiobe, Kioto, Osaka, Nagasaki, and some of the notable
inland sights. This brings him to China (Shanghai) the middle of
November. After a few days there, a trip up the Yangtse, on one of
the excellent American style of river boats, some six hundred
miles to Hang-Kow, should not be missed, as one gets by this the
best possible look at the Chinese at home. Hong Kong, the next
stage, is reached, say early in December. Here you do Canton,
Macao, and other interesting points, and reach Singapore, almost
at the equator, and eat your Christmas dinner directly below your
friends at home. If the reports from Java are favorable, a
tempting excursion to that interesting island can be made from
Singapore; but when we were at Singapore Europeans were being
brought there from Java, and hurried north to cool places as the
only cure for maladies contracted in that island. Therefore we
abandoned our intended trip thither.

The traveller can decide whether to take steamer from Singapore
via Bankok, Siam, and do that coast of Asia, and reach Calcutta
from the west, or to follow our course via Ceylon. If he has
plenty of time, the former may enable him to see more of India;
but our experience was that there is more to see by any route than
can be properly taken in upon one journey. If the wanderer follow
us to Ceylon, we advise him to cross from Colombo to Southern
India by steamer to Philipopolis, and go up through Southern India
by land to Madras, as this will give him an opportunity to see the
strange architecture and many customs peculiar to that region. We
did the principal sights of India, but we advise any of our
readers who make the journey, instead of returning from Delhi as
we did, to go further north to Amritsir, and as far toward Cabool
as the rail may extend. Simla upon the hills should also be
visited. We often regret that we had not a week or two more to
spend in India. We were rather late in the season, and Bombay was
getting hot--indeed, it is always rather hot anywhere at the
equator--but with the exception of a few hours at midday no great
inconvenience was found, and the nights and the mornings were
pleasant.

By the time the traveller has reached Egypt, and seen Alexandria
and Cairo, he will be disposed, if our condition be any guide, to
rest and be thankful, consigning any further extended travels to
some future time when he has fully digested what he has gathered
in his wanderings, and is fresh. When he touches pretty Catania,
on his way west, he will feel for the first time that he is once
more, as it were, at home among his own kith and kin, and has been
quite long enough among strangers. Going round the world yields
one exquisite pleasure which cannot be experienced upon any other
tour. Our way over the long seas has not to be retraced. The
farther we go, the nearer we come to home; every day's journey
away from those we love, is also one day's step nearer to them. I
think, also, that no amount of travel in detached portions of the
world enables one to contemplate the world and the human race as a
whole. One must traverse the ball round and round to arrive at a
broad, liberal, correct estimate of humanity--its work, its aims,
its destiny.

Go, therefore, my friends--all you who are so situated as to be
able to avail yourselves of this privilege--go and see for
yourselves how greatly we are bound by prejudices, how checkered
and uncertain are many of our own advances, how very nearly all is
balanced. No nation has all that is best, neither is any bereft of
some advantages, and no nation, or tribe, or people is so unhappy
that it would be willing to exchange its condition for that of any
other. See, also, that in every society there are many individuals
distinguished for traits of character which place them upon a par
with the best and highest we know at home, and that such are
everywhere regarded with esteem, and held up as models for lower
and baser natures to emulate.

The traveller will not see in all his wanderings so much abject,
repulsive misery among human beings in the most heathen lands, as
that which startles him in his civilized Christian home, for
nowhere are the extremes of wealth and poverty so painfully
presented. He will learn, too, if he be observant, that very
little is required after all to make mankind happy, and that the
prizes of life worth contending for are, generally speaking,
within the reach of the great mass.

Did you ever sum up these prizes and think how very little the
millionaire has beyond the peasant, and how very often his
additions tend not to happiness but to misery! What constitutes
the choice food of the world? Plain beef, common vegetables and
bread, and the best of all fruits--the apple; the only nectar
bubbles from the brook without money and without price. All that
our race eats or drinks beyond this range must be inferior, if not
positively injurious. Dress--what man, or rather what woman
wears--is less and less comfortable in proportion to its frills
and its cost, and no jewel is so refined as the simple flower in
the hair, which the village maid has for the plucking. All that
women overload themselves with beyond this range is a source of
unhappiness. To be the most simply attired is to be the most
elegantly dressed. So much for true health and happiness in all
that we eat, and drink, and wear.

If we extend the inquiry to the luxuries and adornments of life,
is there any music--which of course comes first--comparable in
grandeur to that of the wave, stirring the soul with its mighty
organ tones as it breaks upon the beach, or any so exquisitely
fine as that of the murmuring brook which sings its song forever
to every listener upon its banks, while above birds warble and the
zephyr plays its divine accompaniment among the trees! We spend
fortunes for picture-galleries, but what are the tiny painted
copies compared to the great originals, the mountains, the glens,
the streams and waterfalls, the fertile fields, the breezy downs,
the silver sea! These are the gems of the universal gallery, the
common heritage of man, the property of the humblest who has eyes
to see, and as free as the air we breathe. We have our
conservatories and spend our thousands upon orchids, but which of
nature's smiles ranks with the rose and the mignonette, the daisy
and the bluebell, and the sweet forget-me-not blooming for all
earth's children, and which grow upon the window-sill of the
artisan and which the laborer blesses at his cottage door!

If we go higher still in the scale, we find that the companionship
of the gods is not denied to the steady wage-receiving man, for
Shakespeare and our Burns and our Scott can be had for sixpence
per volume. In this blessed age in which we are privileged to live
even the immortals are cheap and visit the toiler. We see the rich
rolling over the land in their carriages, but blessed beyond these
is the man who strolls along the hedge-rows. The connoisseur in
his gallery misses the health-giving breeze which brings happiness
to the devotee who seeks the original afield. The lady in her
overheated conservatory knows nothing of the joyous rapture of her
more fortunate sister who gathers the spoils of the glen. Ah, my
friends, ponder well over this truth: the more one dwells with
her, the more one draws from her, the closer one creeps to her
bosom, the sweeter is nature's kiss. From man's neglect of her for
meaner substitutes come most of the disappointment and unhappiness
of life. The masses of mankind are happy all round the world
because their pleasures are drawn so largely from sources which
lie open to all. The rich are not to be envied, for truly "there
is no purchase in money" of any real happiness. When used for our
own gratification, it injures us; when used ostentatiously, it
brings care; when hoarded, it narrows the soul. Nature has not
provided a means by which any man can use riches for selfish
purposes without suffering therefrom. There is only one source of
true blessedness in wealth, and that comes from giving it away for
ends that tend to elevate our brothers and enable them to share it
with us. Nature is gloriously communistic after all, God bless
her! and sees that a pretty fair division is made, let man hoard
as he may. The secret of happiness is renunciation.

Another advantage to be derived from a journey round the world is,
I think, that the sense of the brotherhood of man, the unity of
the race, is very greatly strengthened thereby, for one sees that
the virtues are the same in all lands, and produce their good
fruits, and render their possessors blessed in Benares and Kioto
as in London or New York; that the vices, too, are akin, and also
that the motives which govern men and their actions and aims are
very much the same the world over. In their trials and sufferings,
as in their triumphs and rejoicings, men do not differ, and so the
heart swells and the sympathies extend, and we embrace all men in
our thoughts, leaving not one outside the range of our solicitude
and wishing every one well. The Japanese, Chinese, Cingalese,
Indians, Egyptians, all have been made our friends through
individuals of each race of whom we have heard much that was good
and noble, pure lives, high aims, good deeds, and how can we,
therefore, any longer dwell apart, believing our own land or our
own people in any respect the chosen of God! No, no; we know now
in a sense much more vivid than before that all the children of
the earth dwell under the reign of the same divine law, and that
for each and every one that law evolves through all the ages, the
higher from the lower, the good from evil, slowly but surely
separating the dross from the pure gold, disintegrating what is
pernicious, consolidating what is beneficial to the race, so that
the feeling that formerly told us that we alone had special care
bestowed upon us gives place to the knowledge that every one in
his day and generation, wherever found, receives the truth best
fitted for his elevation from that state to the next higher, and
so

  "Ilka blade of grass keps its ain drap o' dew,"

and grows its own fruit after its kind. For these and many other
reasons, let all thoughtful souls follow my example and visit
their brethren from one land to another till the circle is
complete.

The unprecedented advance made by western nations in the past and
present generations, upon which we continually plume ourselves, is
shared by the world in general. Wherever we have been, one story met
us. Everywhere there is progress, not only material but intellectual
as well, and rapid progress too. The oldest inhabitant has always
his comparison to offer between the days of his youth and the
advantages possessed by the youth of to-day. Matters are not as they
were. We saw no race which had retrograded, if we except Egypt,
which is now in a transitional state, and will ultimately prove no
exception to the rule. The whole world moves, and moves in the right
direction--upward and onward--the things that are better than those
that have been and those to come to be better than those of to-day.
The law of evolution--the higher from the lower--is not discredited
by a voyage round the world and the knowledge of what is transpiring
from New York round to New York again gives us joy this morning as
we sum it all up.

The trip has been without a single unpleasant incident. We have not
missed one connection, nor ever been beyond the reach of all the
comforts of life, nor have we had one unhappy or even lonely hour.
Every day has brought something new or interesting. And sitting here
in our quiet mountain home this morning, I feel that there is
scarcely a prize that could be offered for which I would exchange
the knowledge obtained and the memories of things seen during my
trip. One of the great pleasures of travel in the East is the
unbounded hospitality--excessive kindness--everywhere met with. Will
the numerous kind friends to whom we are so deeply indebted--a host
far too great to name--please accept this general acknowledgment as
at least a slight evidence that their goodness to us is not
unappreciated? At every stage of our travels I have been struck with
the cheering thought, that notwithstanding the indisputable fact
that a vast amount of misery seems inseparable from human life,
still the general condition of mankind is a happy one. Even the
Hindoo in India, or the Malay in the Archipelago--and these seem to
exist under the worst conditions--each of these constantly sees
cause to bless his good fortune and render thanks--sincere,
heartfelt thanks--to a kind Providence for casting his life in
pleasant places, and not in damp, foggy England, or amid American
frosts and snows. We have their sincere sympathy, I assure you. Nor
is patriotism a peculiarly western virtue. No matter who or what he
is, the man of the East in his heart exalts his own country and his
own race, and esteems them specially favored of the gods. And indeed
it is with nations as with individuals: as none are entirely good,
so none are entirely bad. The unseen power is at work in all lands,
evolving the higher from the lower and steadily improving all, so
the traveller finds much to commend in every country, and seeing
this he grows tolerant and liberal, and able more heartily to sing
with Burns--

   "Then let us pray that come it may--
      As come it will, for a' that--
    That sense and worth, o'er a' the earth,
      May bear the gree, for a' that;
    For a' that, and a' that,
      It's coming yet, for a'that,
    That man to man, the warld o'er
      Shall brothers be, for a' that."

In which hope, nay, in the confident and inspiring belief in the
sure coming of the day of the Brotherhood of Man, I lay down my
pen and bring to a close this record of my tour round the world.






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Colophon

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