Imágenes de páginas


of woe,

But where you urge the gay cam. as himself, by laying before them the paign,

means of his own prosperity. It was No tears the cheek of friendship too with the much superior hope of stain,

relieving the poor slaves from a part No Abercromby dies! p. 254. of their burdens and sufferings, and

of rendering them more healthy, more happy, and more virtuous than can

be expected from their present conTO GEORGE ROMNEY, ESQ.

dition and treatment.Pref. p. ll. Written at Eartham in 1792. By the

The major part of these letters is late W. Cowper, Esq.

occupied with minute instructions for Romney! expert infallibly to trace

the cultivation and management of a On chart or canvass, not the form sugar estate, interspersed with hints alone

for the relief of the negroes in their laAnd semblance; but, however faintly bour; and the latter part of them is shewn

applied to the circumstances of the The mind's impression too, on every in his twenty-second letter thus in.

slaves particularly, which the author face. With strokes that time ought never

troduces the subject. “But the to erase !

path which I have exhorted you to Thou hast so penciled mine, that tho' pursue, is most unfrequented and Town

solitary. No body of men, scarce The subject worthless, I have never

does any single man, assiduously, and known

disinterestedly, toil for those who are The artist shining with superior grace: subject to his power; of whose conBut this I mark that symptom none

cerns and welfare he is the deposi.

tary; for whose happiness he is acIn thine incomparable work appear: countable; and whose misery fixes Well! I am satisfied it should be so,

on him a stigma, that the loudest apSince on maturer thought the cause is plause, and the most splendid reclear,

nown, in vain attempts to efface. For in my looks what sorrow couldst

“ Not that instances of benevolent

and untired anxiety for those comWhile I was Hayley's guest, and sat mitted to their care are unknown to thee : p. 343.

among planters. Examples of such great and rare virtues are to be found in this order of men; but nerer

among others, whose fellow creatures LXXXVIII. LETTERS on the Culti- lie at their mercy; never among men

vation of the Otaheite Cane; the invested with a nation's power, or Manufacture of Sugar and Rum; the executing a nation's trusts. By such saving of Melasses; the Care and the people liave been always pillaged, Preservation of Slock; with the At- or sacrificed; generally botls ; first. tention and Anxiety which is due to robbed, and then seduced or driven Negroes. To these Topics are aided, to slaughter. a few other Particulars analagous “Such was the conduct of the great to the Subject of the Letters; and also Frederick, whose secretaries fell a Speech on the Slave Trade, the most asleep at his side, while he, awake important Feature in West Indian and watchful, planned the augmenCultivation. By CLEMENT CAINES, tation of his despotic power, and Esq. Svo. pp. 301.

traced the route of his invading ar

mies. While he converted his hapCHIS work is divided into thirty py, peaceful villages into sleepless

letters, five additional Papers, alarm posts. While he made his flouSpeech on the Slave Trade, and a Pro- rishing cities barren garrisons, bis spectus of a work to be published, kingdom a camp, and his whole peoby subscription, entitled, The History ple a consuming soldiery. of the General Council and General “ Such was the great reformer, the Assembly of the Leward Islands. Czar Peter, who killed 1500 of his

The author's design in this publi- subjects' children, that he måght try a cation is thus expressed. “ It was naval experiment; who sacrificed with the hope of rendering other 13,000 of his faithfullest gusirds to the West India cultivators as prosperous indulgence of his vague and bloody

thou see,



sáspicions; who buried the popula- station requires of him that he may tion of an immense city, in laying the join or receive a noisy drunken party foundations of his new and capricious at a muitton or turtle feast. Like an capital.

unworthy son of the church, who • In England too, what is now pass. hurries over her service that he may ing? Not forcibly, indeed, and by quit her precincts; that he may violence, but legislatively, and by act leave the house of God, and seat of parliament. The rich are de- himself at the edge of a dinner table; prived of comforts, the poor of ne- thal he may cease to be a minister of cessaries, that the trade of death, the heaven, to become the glutton of a casting of cannon, and the prepara- sirloin, or the epicure of a haunch of tions for murder may not stop for venison." p. 139, 140. want of funds--that no delay may Medicine, suitable food in sickness, occur in expeditions to distress the and proper nursing under the immeenemy - expeditions in which the diate eye of the inaster, are next resea-sickness of the troops inflicted coinmended. The peculiar diseases more misery on the British, than de- to which slaves are incident are scent and invasion did on the French named, and the method of cure which -expeditions in which the nation's the writer found successful, and which blood has been spilled abroad that her he exemplifies in particular insuccesses might be vaunted at home. stances.

* This is a subject, my dear, on which A particular attention to the mo. I cannot write either with coolness or rals of negroes is enjoined by the aubrevity. The unseasonable objections thor, especially on the Lord's day, which it has extorted from me you which being a day of rest, he observes, may, however, turn to account,' by the slaves take the opportunity of applying them to the situation of the perpetrating every vice. Drunkenslaves subjected to your authority. ness is a crime to which they are By acting the reverse of political much addicted ; and he therefore masters in their treatment of the enforces the necessity of the watchful people ; by respecting the rights, and eye of the master at this time which consulting the feelings of the negroes is considered the most effectual reunder your command, in proportion straint. as they are destitute of redress from The improper conduct of managers, your injuries, and incapable of appeal is particularly noticed, and thus in, irom your power.” p. 131-134. troduced. “It is very extraordinary

Leiter XXIll. recommends to the that no man should be conscientious planter the quality and quantity of or moral in situations where his confood his slaves should have, which, the science ought to be most awake, and writer says, ought to be distributed his morality most strict. But strange three or four tiines a week, and con- as this assertion may seem, itexpresses demos the practice of those who give one of the most universal truths. to their slaves the provision for a that ever was uttered: a truth which week at one time; remarking, “ that embraces all ranks in the state, is apthese inconsiderate gormandizing plicable to all professions, and veri, Creatures will devour, or dissipate, tied by every individual in his busia Whatever is given to them before half ness and calling. And although gethe time is expired, for which it is neral rules are said to be contirmed destined to be their support. Dur- by exceptions, this admits of fewer jog the remainder of it they are ob- exceptions than any general rule that liged to struggle with all the wretch- can be laid down. edness of hunger and want. To balance " The offences too, by whose per. these dreadful evils, endured by the petration conscience is not roused, slaves, what is the gain of the hard which she witnesses without emo? hearted master, who inflicts them. tion, and sees without noticing, are He avoids the repetition of a task not only most atrocious but most that humanity would delight to per- aggravated. The murders, which she form and repeat. He saves a few contemplates with indifference, are contemptible minutes in the discharge always aggravated by breach of trust; of a duty that a good man would be so too are the robberies and the happy to protract. And for what is falsehoods. All shocking crimes : he guilty of this pernicious saving, simply and of themselves sufficient to

unfeeling desertion of what his make nature shudder; yet conscience


Vol. I.


beholds them, and their most hei- he is greedy of tythes, and addicted nous aggravations, unmoved.

to gluttony; it is indeed as a clergy“ The motive for appointing kings, man, that he sets an example of every or rather the only inducement for vice, against which he has vowed to submitting to the charge of their state God that he would caution and guard and continuance, is the good of their others. subjects. Whenever a whole people “Stillit must be acknowledged, that shall concur in the persuasion that out of the sphere, in which it is pecumonarchy is hostile to their well- liarly incumbent on all these characbeing, the monarch is no more. The ters to practise virtue and honesty; good of the nation is the condition of where they know no other than the the tenure by which he holds his ordinary inducements, which percrown. And yet how sew kings scru- suade men in common to be just and ple to break the engagement, while good, they are scrupulously just and they retain the consideration; to eminently good keep the throne, and act in opposi. “ The superiority of clergymen to tion to its duties; to dissipate the laymen, in the general course and fortunes, and sacrifice the lives of tenor of their lives, is undeniable. their subjects, instead of being con- Lawyers are as punctual in dischargsiderate and tender of both. It is, ing iheir debts, and fulfilling their however, over the commission of contracts, as any order in the state. such crimes that the consciences of No man is more alive to the imprese kings slumber, and to their atrocity sions of feeling and sympathy for cannot be awakened.

objects that occur out of the ordinary “ Are the great councils of a nation, line of his practice, than the medical or the representatives of a free coun- man.--He who plunders from a natry, guilty of fewer or inferior crimes, tion's stores the vilest refuse, would when they sanction unnecessary wars, not lay his finger on an ingot, or impose unnecessary taxes, and give touch a bar of gold, in the coffers of advice or votes in which the mouth a private person. The false counselbelies the heart, and pronounces a lor, or false representative of a trustcalumny on the sentiments it ought ing people, would scorn the appearto utter? yet among them, whose ance of insincerity in any concerns conscience starts at the sins which he but those of his country.—The most commits, or the breach of trust that rapacious inonarch, whose taxes tear heightens their malignity?

from his starving peasants the wages • In the transactions of office, it is which should buy them bread, who the property confided to his care that would cast their last farthing into a the ihief, without a conscientiousness scoundrel cannon ; yet he, even this of guilt, purloins.

remorseless plunderer, would restore * The doctor too, whose indiffer to the richest grandee of his kingence or carelessness protracts, or suf- dom a purse that had been dropped, fers to become fatal, the disease, which although it were filled with diahis assiduity might have cured, adds monds. p. 182-186. cruelty to murder, and practises both After this politicaldigression, which on those who put their trust in his sufficiently discovers the spirit and attention and skill.

sentiments of the writer, he returns “ The lawyer is eminently faithful to to the management of West Indian those who employ him. But then he estates. is an impugner of justice, candour, The papers added to the letters good faith, and fair testimony, where- are intended to prevent the waste and ever they are hostile to his cause, or peculation by which the proprietors interfere with his client.

of sugar estates are greatly injured ; “The clergyman is a traitor to hea- and to remedy the evil

. 'To render ven; for it is heaven that has con- the estates productive, he recomfided to him the propagation of hu. mends a plaii which he has adopted, mility and self-denial, a contempt of of giving to managers a liberal sti. worldly honours and riches. Yet it pend, and premiums in proportion is as a clergyman, that his port and to the increase of produce, cattle vestment bespeak pride; it is as a and slaves, and completely abolishing clergyman, that he seeks prefer- all perquisites. The choice of attor ments, and dignities falsely named mies. Remedies and treatment in spiritual; it is as a clergyman, that diseases. And the means of keeping;

[ocr errors]

with facility and 'exactness, an ac- on the present day, and in the precount of every transaction upon a sent meeting, have stood up an ad. West Indian estate.

vocate for abolishing the slave trade. Many of our readers will, we doubt But, blessings on my eccentricity, it not, be gratified to find in a West would not suffer me to see and to India planter an advocate for the think like other men, nor to speak in immediate and total abolition of the union with their contented apathy." slave trade, and which is contended p. 256, 257. for with much energy of argument in

“ The horrors of a separation from the speech at the end of this work, the country in which the Africans and which originated in the follow- are born, this trade certainly is the ing resolution, entered into by the parent of. But consider, Mr.Speaker, General Council of the Leeward how unmitigated their horrors are, Islands, and sent to the General As- how aggravated beyond the example sembly for their concurrence, the 7th of every other exile. of March, 1798. “ Resolved, that an “ The wretched African has no inabolition «f the slave trade, (suppos- terval allotted, previous to his deing it to be practicable) a trade sanc- parture, in which he can make a tioned, as it has been by repeated preparation for his journey, or prostatutes and royal proclamations, and vide a defence against the evils of forming, as we affirm it does, the the way. No tender adieus, no convery basis of our colonial system, solatory leave-takings set him forwould be oppressive to the British ward on his road, or beguile the teplanter, destructive to the sugar colo. diousness of the passage with recolnies, and consequently to the British lections that soothe while they pain. revenue ; and of no benefit to the Banishment is mercy to his lot. He Africans themselves." p. 249. is not banished; he is literally torn

In speaking to this resolution the from his country, and from every author states his opinion to be, that thing which it contains that is dear * the slave trade ought to be abo- to him. lished-It ought to be abolished im- “ Children at play are caught up mediately-li ought to be abolished by those who steal men. The weary for the sake and benefit of the plant- labourer is bound while asleep, and er." p. 251.

awakes to captivity from competence That our readers may form an opi- and freedom: Wives in vain stretch nion of the author's reasoning, we out their arms after their husbands; extract the following paragraplis as and the eyes of the husband in vain specimens of the whole.

linger for the grief and form of his * Could I, like other men, have wite. beheld the wretched Africans ex- “ Not that all are free who are posed to sale by bundreds, in our brought to the West Indies from Guinea-yards, and satisfied myself Africa. Many are slaves in their with saying, it is so, and it must be own country.

But some are not so; 50-could I have reflected on the and so su ceptible is wretched man of misery which they sutfer, when torn misery, that a single free born Afrifrom the country where they were can may realize in bis individual boborn, and the greater misery of their som greater woes than all I have depassage across the ocean, which se- scribed.p. 258, 259 parates them from it for ever--could “ I have directed, Mr. Speaker, four I have witnessed their deaths, which Africans, purchases lately made by almost glue the grave, after their arri- myself, to be brought here to-day. val among us, and the melancholy The first is a huge skeleton, who worse than death which mark their lives in my kitchen, and wallows in path to il-could I have witnessed victuals ; but neither plenty nor exthe barrenness of our Creole women, cess can put an ounce of tiesh upon whose forins are inoulded to fecun- his bones. The second has never dity, the loss of our children at the raised his head, or smiled, since I instant of their birth, the mortality purchased him.' There he is. Meamong our ablest slaves, their decay lancholy has marked him for her and death in the tiine of manhood own. The third is a woman - the could I have witnessed all this, and sickly victim of obstructions created have satistied myself with saying, it during her passage, lest the value of is 50, and it must be so, I should not her purchase should be dimiuished,

[ocr errors]

These, and an experience which bours ; ravaged her fields, sacked her the grave now corers, determine me towns, and let her inhabitants welnever again to contribute to this lior- tering in their blood. Tid trade. So may the great Father “ Such were the dire effects of the of mankind prosper those who are African trade on St. Domingo: and dearest to me, so may he bless my in the Leeward Islands, Mr. Speaker, children, as I here swear, I will not! it is the same trade which menaces us

“ The fourth, Mr. Speaker, is a boy: with the same horrors. For it is his father, who had a numerous oil this trade, with its dangerous facility spring, and but little clothes to give of procuring slaves, and the treachthem, sold bim in exchange for a erous submission of their deineanour, piece of cloth. Youth, thoughtless that has inultiplied the lurking assas. ness, the frame of an infant Hercules, sins, till they swarm wherever the render hin superior to the evils of planter turns his eyes; - it is this slavery. If this shocking trade is trade, that has excluded from his still persevered in, it should then be employment, and driven from bis confined to children, who are too society. his white brethren;- it is young, and too inconsiderate, to this trade which bas cut him od froin brood on the reverse which has succour and from hope, when deovertaken them. But no, it must be struction is at hand: when death abolished. Though the father sold stares him in the face, and indignities him, who knows the pangs the mo- worse than death threaten to precede ther felt at their separation. Chil- it. dren leave behind them miseries and “Hear then, thou thoughtless plantregret equal to what the grown exile er, these indignities which aggravate carries with him, and in his bosom. the pangs of death, and shudder at the This trade must, Mr. Speaker, he horrid trade which engenders them, abolished, unless every tender fibre although thou dost not lear to die. of the human heart is to be explored, For it is true, that heroism, nay ob. that toriure may be lodged in it.” stinacy, can endure, despise, and P. 265, 266.

provoke all that savages can inflict The writer states that advantages on ourselves, when they make a sport will accrue to the planter from the of pain. But there are other suiterabolition of the slave trade, and thus ings, there are wounds which can be concludes his speech.

indicted through those we love, and “ That the consequences of this have reared, which pierce our noblest trade are such as have been describ- principles and most cherished sentied

must acknowledge, A1r. inents before they reach ourselves, Speaker, if we connect effects with and such wounds agonize beyond causes, and trace the calamities endurance. What hero, nay, what which the West Indian world has savage, could endure to see the endured, and with which we are massacre of his children, or the disthreatened, to their source.

honour of his wife, to be taunted " It was the eager and boundless pro- with, and called on to witness the secution of the African trade, which, foulest of stains, and the most afflictin St. Domingo, filled with negroes ing of cruelties, at the instant that every situation that ought to have he was expiring. But such has been been occupied with men complex, frequently, and recently has been the ioned like the planter:- that stationed fate of the West Indian planter in a conspirator wherever an ally ought consequence of the African trade, in to have been found :--that crowded consequence of his being encom. with enemies every avenue through passed with blacks, whom his African which succour could arrive in time of purchases had gathered round him. aların and danger. It was in St. Do- “ Let him then abandon this dan. mingo, that the standard of revolt gerous and horrid trade, if he wishes was first uplifted; that it waved over not to be crushed by the calamities the most flourishing colony upon thai bang over him; if he wishes earth, and gave the signal to her not to sink into the grave childless mass of blacks to fall upon and and dishonoured; if he wishes to die butcher the whites. Instantly they in peace, and in the arms of his faset at nought her twenty thousand mily.” p. 285-288. inilitia, bid defiance to her regular Subjoined to this volume are proforces, and the shipping in her har- posals, for printing by subscription,


« AnteriorContinuar »