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382
Lord Amherst's Embassy to China.

(VOL. 2 some neat piece of sewed work, or white finished their supper, the meat was resatin, with three pillows at her back, moved, and in an instant every one fiew covered with the same, she in full dress, to the sweetmeats to pocket them, on with a lappet head-dress, and a fan in her which a scramble ensued, chairs overhapd. Having informed her acquain- turned, and every thing on the table

, tance what day she is to see company, wrestling and pulling at one another with they all come and pay their respects to the utmost noise and violence. When her, standing or walking a little through all was quiet, they went to the stoups the room, for there are no chairs; they (for there were no bottles for wine,) of drink a glass of wine and eat a piece of which the women had a good share; for, cake, and then give place to others. though it was a disgrace to be seen Towards the end of the week all the drunk, yet it was none to be a little infriends were asked to what was called toxicated in good company. A few the Cummerfealls; this was a supper days after this

, the same company were where every geðtleman brought a pint of asked to the christening, which was wine, to be drank by him and his wife. always in the church, all in high dress, a The supper was, a ham at the head, and number of them young ladies, who were a pyramid of fowls at the bottom, hens called maiden cimmers; one of them and ducks below, partridges at top; there presented the child to the father. After was an eating posset in the middle of the ceremony, they dined and supped the table, with dried fruits and sweet- together, and the night often concluded meats at the sides. When they had by a ball.”

From the Literary Gazette, Nov, 1817, ELLIS'S JOURNAL OF THE LATE EMBASSY TO CHINA.

CONCLUDED.

OUR
UR last

Number brought the Chi- Deum cole keeps no pace with the Renese Embassy to that condition gem serva among these paltry slaves. which in military movements is called Their superstitious legends are however retrograding, and which in the present gross and absurd enough to obtain a case might be called retro-tracking. zealous belief (for zeal is generally in They had seen Pekin, resisted the plea- proportion to incredibility,) and they sant ceremony of having their heads have many temples : several of these bumped against the ground, shammed Mr. Ellis visited, and we copy what is Abra'm, and were ordered to go home most curious from his narrative respectagain without the joy of viewing the ing them. At Tong-chow celestial presence. Sailing along a ca « The Miao or Temple, occupied by nal, with an occasional walk upon its Lord Macartney, is now the residence banks, is not the best mode of acquiring of the Koong-yay. I went yesterday information respecting a country ; but morning to a smaller temple, which had still where every thing is curious, there nothing remarkable on the outside ; in is a good deal of amusing information to a small apartment on the left of the enbe picked up even in this way. We trance, there were four figures, two male shall accordingly proceed with our trave and two female, all gorgeously drest

, the ellers to Canton, and note the memora- male as warriors ; in the hands of one bilia on their way.

of the females there was a leaf of a plant : Polytheism in the most exterled within the inner and larger ball there sense is the Chinese faith, though it ap- were several figures ranged on each pears that with all their gods there is less side, some with crowns and others with regard paid to religion in this country fillets. The principal objects of adora. than in almost any other at all removed tion were two figures standing in a recess, from barbarism. Priests and people are fronting the entrance of the hall, a male alike indifferent to the worship of supe- and a female, the latter bolding the fruit rior intelligences; the former indeed of the water-lily in her hand ; these perform a few idle ceremonies, but the were still more richly drest than the oth

TOL. 2.]

Ellis's Journal. -Chinese Images and Temples.

383

ers.

Some bundles of feathers were Devil Star's Chamber." A temple to hanging before them, and pots for in- Chung-wang-bai, a full-bearded god cense were placed on the table. The upon a throue, the entrance to whose male figures were short and thick ; this presence was guarded by two figures of may therefore be considered the Chinese men in armour, apparently of stone, standard of beauty, man being usually standing near horses ready accoutred, disposed to attribute his notions of per- was the next object of curiosity. At fection to the form under which the Sang-yuen, the god Fo with eight arms, Deity is portrayed."

exactly similar to the idols of the HinAt Tien-sing, another small temple, doos, occupied a temple, and several dedicated, as stated, to the God of Fire, colossal figures of warriors were reprewas inspected,

sented as statues of distinguished ManHis igneous godship was a short darins. Another is thus describedfigure seated on a throne, holding a “ In the largest Miao, the most redrawn sword in one hand and a serpen- markable object I observed was the motine* ring in the other ; two dwarf-like del of a Pagoda or Paou-la, about fourfigures stood near him, each with rings: teen feet high, of thirteen stories ; each there were three other figures, less per- story was filled with small gilt figures, fect, on the side of the building. 'l'his not ill executed, in wood. The princiMiao was under repair, and the work- pal figures were also wooden, but imita:men were cooking their victuals in the ing bronze ; in general the colossal fig. very saoctum. Religion seems to sit ures are baked clay. Notwithstanding very easily on the Chinese. In their the coarseness of the materials, the orfeelings on this bead they resemble the naments of the drapery are represented ancient Pagans; the worship of the gods with great fidelity and minuteness ; one forms part of civil institutions and daily of these temples was used as a stable, habits, but never deeply influences their and the other as a farın-house." passions. It would be wrong to attribute Near Kei-kho-chin, at the junction of the late edicts against the Christians to re. the river Wun-kho with the canal, the ligious persecution; they arose from an al- boats offer up sacrifices at the Loongleged connexion with the malcontents, wang-Miao or Temple of the Dragon not, I understand, without foundation.” King; the first at which Mr. Ellis, as

On the 6th of September, a Mahome- he strangely expresses himself, saw " the dan mosque, of which there are several business* of religion going on.” The in the province through which the mis- boatmen burnt some incense before the sion was then passing, was seen : Mr. idol, and prostrated themseives, while Ellis thinks that Mahomedans are eligi- the priests struck upon the gong, and ble to all offices in China.

received a few copper coins for their Another temple was visited on the 9th. ouble. Dragons surrounded the idol. It was dedicated to

But not to detain our readers longer "The Eternal Mother or principa!Chi- among the temples than is necessary to nese female divinity. The figure of the afford a tolerable idea of them, we shall goddess had a white cloth thrown over it, conclude with the description of only and a crown on the head ; in her hand one other, namely, that of Ning-niang, she held a leaf : there were two attend- which may be taken as a sample of the ant figures, of smaller size, in the same most perfect and celebrated. shrine ; some other figures were placed “ It was, as usual, divided into courts, Dear the wall on one side.”

four in number, the two inner appropriIt is observed that religion seems to ated to the priests. The first contained be on the decline, as all these buildings, two square pavilions, with richly decothe temples, are going to ruin.

rated roofs ; on the several pinnacles The next which was inspected was were small figures of animals; the frieze saia to be dedicated to Kwae-sing, and looked like green enamel, and had a bore the extraordinary name of “ The very pleasing effect ; the tiles were of

• Serpentine, we suppose, means here formed of a • In another place he talks of the “ professional terpent, and not waving.

eraft” of the priesthood.

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Elis's Journal. -Chinese Images and Temples - Population. (vol. ?

bright yellow. In these pavilions were also common, and of fruits the mee tree, large slabs of black marble placed up- bearing a sort of small cherry, and the right on pedestals, on which were in- wild-fig climbing up the walls like ivy. scriptions. Galleries on each side con- To these we may add the tollow tree, tained the usual figures of civil and mili- which resembles a maple, and is beautitary Mandarins. At the very extreme ful in its foliage and berries in their difof this court was a colossal statue of the ferent stages, some with the outward dragon king. Having passed through husk still green, some brown, and others, the first court, we entered that contain- freed of the covering, of a pure white

, ing the divinity, representing the Empe- and the size of a large pea, called by the ror's mother, to whom the Miao is dedi- Chinese “Skin-oil-fruit,” from which cated ; she was seated with two attends the tallow is obtained by compression in ants standing near her, a yellow robe a mill, and sold in large cakes: the was thrown round the body, and on her camphor tree, evergreen and handsome: head was a crown or large bonnet : the the varnish tree, cultivated as plantations, figure was richly gilt. The cross-beams not higher than a young fruit tree, leaves of the ceiling were decorated with golden laurel-shaped, of a light green and dowdragons on a bright blue ground. Round ny feel, but producing sores if bruised; the roofs of the temple were ornaments the varnish from this tree is extraoted by resembling spears and tridents. A lus- slitting the bark : and the wax bush, tre, composed of horn lanterns and which resembles the thorn, and bears a strings of coloured glass beads, hung crop of wax deposited upon its branches from the centre : two large horn lan- by a tribe of insects. Of pasture land terns were on each side of the altar, with very little was seen ; cows and buffaloes polished metal skreens near them, used were feeding on grass very closely grazed

. as reflectors to increase the brilliancy The population of China Mr. Ellis when the whole are lighted. Every thinks much overrated in European statepart of the roof was richly carved and ments. Their own writers do not pregilt, and surrounded by a frieze varie- tend to more than 200 millioos, and this gated with green, red, and black deco- is probably a great exaggeration. The rations. In the open area of the court, finances are dreadfully deranged; bat a metal vessel, shaped not unlike a la or the lower orders, in the opinion of the pagoda, was placed, where incense is writer, whose acquaintance with Persia, kept burning ; the gongs, drums, and Turkey, and the parts of India not Britother instruments belonging to the tem- ish, renders him a competent judge of the ple, corresponded to the superiority of fact, are comparatively more comfortable the rest of the edifice, We found the than the natives of these countries. priests very well disposed to do the hon In their dealings the copper Tchen is ours, and they were perfectly satisfied the only coin in circulation, the precious with an offering of a dollar.”

metals being received according to the A statue of Confucius in another tem- weight and fineness as an article of barple gave the legislator with African fea- ter rather than as a circulating medium. tures !

Dollars have only a fixed value as rep. Dragging along at the average rate of resenting a certain quantity of silver, and about twenty-five miles a day, the travel- the tael, or ounce of silver, is an imaginlers could only observe a few of the cus. ary coin for keeping accounts; its value toms, and little of the arts, as they are is 6s.8d. ster. During the Ming dynasty

, cultivated by the Chinese. On the it is stated that paper was in circulation. banks of the rivers and canals which Their music is of the most miserable formed their route, (the Peiho, Euho, kind, noise being the substitute for meloYellow, and Yan-y-tse rivers, the Po- dy. Yet the attraction at an evening wang Lake an inland sea, the Shan-kho, place of entertainment consisted of a &c. river) they noticed the cultivation band of blind musicians. The principal of millet, tobacco, cotton-plant, buck- played on a complicated instrument conwheat, hemp, and a small species of bean. sisting of a box about two feet long and Willows and poplars prevailed; but one broad, with two bridges, over which oaks, shaddock, and orange trees were were stretched some strings, while others

VOL. 2.] Chinese Visiting Vehicles-Boat SacrificesWarlike Implements. 385 passed underneath : it had two circular which are also appropriated to propiapertures about the middle, and the per- tiate " the evil spirit.' former used two small rods in touching One of the polite ceremonies of Chithe strings. It seemed the simplest form na consists in wearing a cap of the same of the harpsichord, and with a guitar and description with that of a superior. fiddle made tolerable harmony. Thus, though the authorities of Yang

Among their other customs we may choo-foo had put on their winter caps notice the wheeling of women in wheel- before the Embassy arrived in their probarrows, as a visiting conveyance. In vince, they immediately resumed their one instance Mr. Ellis saw two well- summer caps when they found that dressed, one on each side of the wheel ; Kwang (a Chinchae ! !) still wore his. in another there was also a boy in the The time of cap-changing in every district machine. The women, except the poor- is regulated by the chief person; at Pekin est, are all painted, and instead of roses the Emperor is “the glass of fashion" and lilies they lay a strong carnation all to regulate this momentous affair. over their faces, which imparts to their Of the military we have in this volangular-shaped but sparkling eyes still ume various notices. The Chinese bad greater brilliancy. The beggars were heard of the fame of Wellington, whom numerous and importunate to their coun- they seem to consider a great General, trymen, but luckily scorned to ask alms not only on account of his exploits, but of such persons as our Embassy. They because his name is so easy of pronungo about with a bell or a horn, and a ciation to them. Wee-Ling-Tong is basket; and establishing themselves in a accordingly a hero in China, as he is all shop, they ring the one or blow the oth- over the rest of the globe, and were he er, till the basket is filled. An English not a foreigner, might be promoted to thorough-paced pauper going to the pa- divine honours, as the Mandarin Quangrish for relief, could not act with more foot-zer, to whose auspices the suppresperfect assurance.

sion of the late rebellion is attributed, We have already noticed one of the has been by the Emperor. sacrifices offered by the boatmen : these It would require such another as the frequently occurred during the transport British Warrior to make any thing of the of the Embassy. On one occasion soldiers of China. In the northern parts

A cock was killed early in the they seem to be an undisciplined rabblemorning, and the bows of the boat “ Of all arms, matchlocks, bows and

sprinkled with the blood ; it was after- arrows, swords, shields, and quilted - wards roasted, and spread with other breast-plates. Their bow is shaped like

eatables, consisting of boiled pork, salad the Persian bow, that is, not a continuand pickles, upon the forecastle, before a ed arch ; but, unlike the latter, it resheet of coloured paper : a pot of sham- quires little strength to draw them 3 shoo (a spirit distilled from rice,) with their arrows are deeply feathered, more two small cups, and a pair of chop-sticks, than three feet long, with a pointed blade were placed near the provisions. The at the end not barbed. Chinese matchson of the master of the boat officiated locks (continues Mr. Ellis) are the worst a3 priest, and the ceremony consisted in I have ever seen ; originally of ill conthrowing two cups of the liquor and a struction, they are kept in such bad orlittle of the provisions overboard ; some der, that they must become perfectly gilt paper was then burnt, and two strings useless. The swords are short and of crackers discharged; the remainder well-shaped, being slightly curved, and of the provisions were carried away to do not seem bad weapons. The bowfeast

upon. While this ceremony was string rests against the thumb, and for carrying on, on the forecastle, the wo- that purpose a broad ring of bone or men on board were burning paper and in- some hard substance is worn to protect cense before the idol that always stands in the skin.” a shrine in the aftermost part of the boat.” The public executioners sometimes

The autumnal full moon was wor- acted as a police, and kept off the popushipped with similar offerings, part of lace with long whips: these wore co

3B ATHENEUM. Vol. 2.

386 Military Tactics in China— Doctors of War— Funerals, &c. [rol 2 nical caps, the soldiers things like clouts strike these marks successively with the wrapt round their heads. When mili- arrows, the horses being kept at full tary bonours are decided, the men kneel speed. Although the bull's-eye was not to fire the salute, utter a dismal shout, always hit, the target was never missed; and a band of music (the concord of the distance was trifling, not exceeding whose sweet sounds is likened to a my- fifteen or twenty feet. It appeared to riad of cracked penny trumpets) strikes me, that the skill was most displayed in up an air of national triumph.

charging the bow without checking the The Chinese archers were exercised horse. The candidates were young to gratify Lord Amberst, at Kua-choo, Mandarins, handsomely drest; their

“ They shot tolerably well at a tar- horses, trimmings, and accoutrements get about the height of a man, using were in good order; the arrows were much gravity and ceremony in handling merely pointed without barbs, to pretheir bow and arrow; the distance was vent accidents, the spectators being withforty yards. This was followed by a in a few yards of the marks.” few matcblock-men, who kept up a run The funerals in China are, like every ning fire, round a man, upon whom they thing else, very ceremoniously performwheeled and advanced as the pivot. ed. The mourners display violent and The movements resembled those of light regular grief. The women attend in troops, and not ill executed: they load. chairs covered with white, the mourning ed aud fired quicker, and with more colour, and with caps on their heads, precision, than was expected from their like the working caps of mechanics in unmilitary appearance in line. All these England. . The coffin, in the instance evolutions were performed to the beat of seen by our countrymen, was plain ; a drum. It is not unusual at the milita- but the frame that supported it was gilt, ry posts to have the places where each and made of immense beams of timber; file is to stand chalked, to secure their some figures of women, nearly as large keeping equal distances.”

as life, and full drest, were carried in Towards Canton, the soldiers were the front. found to wear armour ; and we shall Our travellers saw the fish-vulture conclude our extract respecting the mili- employed : these birds, about the size tary, with an account of an examination of Muscovy ducks, are trained to dive of students for a licentiate's degree in and catch fish for their masters. the art of war.

It may be observed that We have noticed, that on great occathis is the middle step between Bache- sions there is a particular ceremony in lor and Doctor. Our punsters about the handing round tea. That used is a Canon law would be quite at home here, small-leafed, highly-flavoured green tea,

The place might be called a stadium called yu-tien. In the cups of the prinof about 200 yards in length : at the cipal persons is a thin perforated silver upper end, a temporary hall had been plate, to keep the leaves down, while the erected, with an elevated throne or seat; infusion passes through. The cups used a row of Mandarins, in their full dresses, by Mandarins of rank resemble coffeeoccupied each side ; but the distance cups, and are placed in a woodeo or at which I stood did not enable me to metal saucer shaped like the Chinese ascertain whether the raised part was boats. occupied by some Mandarins, or by a At all the movements of the Embassy, representation of the Imperial presence, the profusion of painted lanterns, some. At the extremity opposite to the hall, was times glittering on the banks, or illumia wall of masonry, intended as a butt for nating the buildings, or floating down military practice; and, at a short dis- the stream, had a fanciful and splendid tance in advance, a py-loo, from which effect. We observe little notice of the the candidates, on horseback, armed with fine arts. Two horses in stone, in a a bow and three arrows, started; the stubble-field, were extremely rude in marks at which they fired, covered with execution, but the saddles and housings white paper, were about the height of a were in better style. Several paintings man, and somewhat wider, placed at in- on glass were remarked for the great tervals of fifty yards; the object was to brilliancy of their colouring: the desigas

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