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ment of him as their sovereign. The prince of Lewchew haughtily replied, that he would own none as his superior. A fleet with ten thousand men was now fitted out from Amoi and the ports of Fokien, which force, overcoming the efforts of the islanders, landed at Lewchew; and the king, who had put himself at the head of his people to repel the enemy, being killed, the Chinese burned the capital, and, carrying off five thousand of the natives, as slaves, returned to China. From this, until 1291, the Lewchewans were left unmolested, when Chit-soo, an emperor of the Yuen family, reviving his pretensions, fitted out a fleet against them from the ports of Fo-kien; but, from various causes, it never proceeded farther than the western coast of Formosa, and from thence returned unsuccessful to China. In the year 1372, Hong-ou, emperor of China, and founder of the Ming dynasty, sent a great mandarin to Tsaytou, who governed in Tchon-chan, the country being at this period divided, in consequence of civil disturbances, into three kingdoms, who, in a private audience, acquitted himself with such address as to persuade the king to declare himself tributary to China, and to request of the emperor the investiture of his estate.

"Having thus managed by finesse what arms had been unable to effect, the emperor took care to receive, with great distinction, the envoys sent by their master. They brought offerings of fine horses, scented woods, sulphur, copper, and tin, and were sent back again with rich presents for

the king and queen; among which was a gold seal.

"The two kings of the other districts, Chan-pe and Chan-nan, followed the example of Tchonchan, and their submission was most graciously received. Thirtysix Chinese families were sent to live in Cheouli, where grants of land were conceded to them; here they taught the Chinese written characters, introduced Chinese books, and the ceremonies in honour of Confucius. The sons of the Lewchewan grandees were also sent to Nankin to study Chinese, and were educated with distinction, at the expense of the emperor.

"The reigns of Ou-ning and Tse-chao, the son and grandson of Tsay-tou, presented nothing extraordinary; but that of Changpa-chi was marked by the reunion of Chan-pe and Chan-nan with Tchon-chan into one kingdom, and the government has since continued in the hands of a single chief. Lewchew is said henceforth to have had considerable intercourse with China and Japan in the way of commerce, much to her advantage, and to have even mediated between those two powers when misunderstandings had occurred.

"The famous Tay-cosama, however, emperor of Japan, whom the Chinese call ambitious, piratical, irreligious, cruel, and debauched, because he had pillaged their coasts, sent a haughty letter to Chang-ning, commanding him to transfer his homage from China to Japan, which Chang-ning, as firmly refused. Notwithstanding the death of Tay-cosama, the Ja


panese fitted out a fleet at Satsuma, made a descent on Lewchew, took the king prisoner, and carried him off, having plundered the palace, and killed one of his near relations, who also resisted the acknowledgment of the Japanese. During a captivity of two years, Chang-ning acquired the admiration of the captors by his unyielding firmness and constancy in refusing to swerve from his first allegiance, and they generously sent him back to his states.

"The Tartar dynasty, soon after this, was placed, by conquest, on the throne of China, and made some alteration in the nature of the tribute to be paid, stipulating that envoys, in future, should be sent to Pekin only once in two years. Cang-hi paid much attention to the welfare of Lewchew; and his memory to this day is much respected by the people. It is said to be nearly a thousand years since the bonzes of the sect of Fo introduced their mode of worship into these islands, which has continued to the present time.

"When they make a vow, it is not before the statues or images of their idols; but they burn incense, and, placing themselves in a respectful attitude before certain consecrated stones, which are to be seen in various public situations, they repeat some mysterious words, said to have been dictated by the divine daughters of Omomey-kieou. They have also among them a set of holy women, who worship certain spirits deemed powerful among them, and who visit the sick, give medicines, and recite prayers. This seems to have given rise to the accusation of an old missionary at Japan, who said

they practised sorcery and witchcraft. Cang-hi likewise introduced among them the adoration of a new deity, under the name of Tien-fey, or Celestial Queen. Polygamy is allowed here, as in China, but seldom practised. Men and women of the same surname cannot intermarry. The king can only take a wife from one of three great families, who always hold the most distinguished posts: there is also a fourth, of the highest consideration, but with which the princes cannot form an alliance, because it is doubtful whether that family is not itself of the royal line. Their chiefs are generally hereditary, but not always; for men of merit are promoted, and all are liable to be degraded for improper conduct. The king's

revenue arises from his own domains; from imposts on salt, sulphur, copper, tin, and several other articles; and from this income he defrays the expenses of the state, and the salaries of the great officers.

"These salaries consist nominally in a certain number of bags of rice; but they are paid generally in silks, and various other necessary articles of clothing and food, in proportions equal to the value of so many bags of that grain. All their interior commerce or marketing is performed by the women and girls at regulated times. They carry their little loads upon their heads with singular dexterity, consisting of the usual necessaries of life and wearing apparel, which they exchange for what they more immediately want, or for the copper coin of China and Japan. The men are said to be neat workmen

in gold, silver, copper, and other metals; and there are manufactories of silk, cotton, flax, and paper. They also build very good vessels, quite large enough to undertake voyages to China and Japan, where their barks are much esteemed. They have adopted the Chinese calendar with respect to the division of the month and year. This island produces rice, wheat, and all sorts of vegetables, in abundance. The people of the coast are expert fishermen, and the sea and rivers are well furnished with fish. They are famous divers, and obtain shells and mother-of-pearl, very much esteemed in China and Japan.

"They possess many woods proper for dying; and one tree in particular yields an oil which is held in great repute. They have likewise a great variety of most delicate fruits, oranges, citrons, lemons, long-y-ven, lee-tchees, grapes, &c. Wolves, tigers, and bears, are unknown; but they have many useful animals, such as horses, water-dogs, black cattle, stags, poultry, geese, peacocks, pigeons, doves, &c.

"The camphor, cedar, and ebony, are among the number of their trees; and they have also wood well fitted for ship-building, and for public edifices. They are represented as disdaining slavery, lying, and cheating. They are fond of games and amusements, and celebrate, with much pomp, the worship of their idols, at the end and commencement of the year; and there exists much union among the branches of families, who give frequent and cheerful entertainments to each other."

The dress of these people is as

remarkable for its simplicity as it is for its elegance. The hair, which is of a glossy black, (black anointed with an oleaginous substance, obtained from the leaf of a tree,) is turned up from before, from behind, and on both sides, to the crown of the head, and there tied close down; great care being taken that all should be perfectly smooth; and the part of the hair beyond the fastening, or string, being now twisted into a neat little top-knot, is there retained by two fasteners, called camesashee and usisashee, made either of gold, silver, or brass, according to the circumstances of the wearer; the former of these having a little star on the end of it, which points forward. This mode of hair-dressing is practised with the greatest uniformity, from the highest to the lowest of the males, and has a very pleasing effect, whether viewed singly, or when they are gathered together. At the age of ten years the boys are entitled to the usisashee, and at fifteen they wear both. Except those in office, who wear only a cap on duty, they appear to have no covering for the head, at least in fine weather. Interiorly, they wear a kind of shirt, and a pair of drawers, but over all a loose robe, with white sleeves, and a broad sash round their middle. They have sandals on their feet, neatly formed of straw; and the higher orders have also white gaiters, coming above the ancle. quality of their robes depends on that of the individual.—The superior classes wear silk of various hues, with a sash of contrasting colour, sometimes interwoven with gold. The lower orders make use of a sort of cotton stuff, generally



of a chesnut colour, and sometimes striped, or spotted blue and white.

There are nine ranks of grandees, or public officers, distinguished by their caps; of which we observed four.-The highest noticed was worn by a member of the royal family, which was of a pink colour, with bright yellow lozenges. The next in dignity was the purple; then plain yellow; and the red seemed to be the lowest.

On the female attire we could make but little observation.-The higher ranks are said to wear (and some indeed were seen with) simply a loose flowing robe, without any sash; the hair either hanging loose over the shoulders, or tied up over the left side of the head, the ends falling down again. The lower orders seemed to have petticoats scarcely deeper than a Highlander's kilt, with a short, but loose habit above. One lady, who very frequently promenaded at the nearest village, in front of the ships, appeared to have her robe richly embroidered.

The island of Lewchew itself is situate in the happiest climate of the globe.-Refreshed by the seabreezes, which, from its geographical position, blow over it at every period of the year, it is free from the extremes of heat and cold, which oppress many other countries; whilst from the general configuration of the land, being more adapted to the production of rivers and streamlets than of bogs or marshes, one great source of disease in the warmer latitudes has no existence: and the people seemed to enjoy robust health; for we observed

no diseased objects, nor beggars of any description, among them.

The verdant lawns and romantic scenery of Tinian and Juan Fernandez, so well described in Anson's Voyage, are here displayed in higher perfection, and on a much more magnificent scale; for cultivation is added to the most enchanting beauties of nature. From a commanding height above the ships, the view is, in all directions, picturesque and delightful. On one hand are seen the distant islands, rising from a wide expanse of ocean, whilst the clearness of the water enables the eye to trace all the coral reefs, which protect the anchorage immediately below.

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To the south is the city of Napafoo, the vessels at anchor in the harbour, with their streamers flying; and in the intermediate space appear numerous hamlets scattered about on thebanks of the rivers, which meander in the valley beneath; the eye being, in every direction, charmed by the varied hues of the luxuriant foliage around their habitations Turning to the east, the houses of Kint-ching, the capital city, built in their peculiar style, are observed, opening from among the lofty trees which surround and shade them, rising one above another in gentle ascent to the summit of a hill, which is crowned by the king's palace: the intervening grounds between Napafoo and Kint-ching, a distance of some miles, being ornamented by a continuation of villas and country houses. To the north, as far as the eye can reach, the higher land is covered with extensive forests.

About half a mile from this


eminence, the traveller is led by a foot-path to what seems only a little wood; on entering which, under an archway formed by the intermingling branches of the opposite trees, he passes along a serpentine labyrinth, intersected at short distances by others. Not far from each other, on either side of these walks, small wicker doors are observed, on opening any of which, he is surprised by the appearance of a court-yard and house, with the children, and all the usual cottage train, generally gamboling about; so that, whilst a man fancies himself in some lonely and sequestered retreat, he is, in fact, in the middle of a populous, but invisible village.

Nature has been bountiful in all her gifts to Lewchew for such is the felicity of its soil and climate, that productions of the vegetable kingdom, very distinct in their nature, and generally found in regions far distant from each other, grow here side by side. It is not merely, as might be expected, the country of the orange and the lime; but the banyan of India and the Norwegian fir, the tea-plant, and sugar-cane, all flourish together. In addition to many good qualities, not often found combined, this island can also boast its rivers and secure harbours; and last, though not least, a worthy, a friendly, and a happy race of people.

These islanders are represented as being remarkable for their honesty and adherence to truth, and to this character they appear to be fully entitled. The chiefs informed us that there was little probability of their stealing any thing; but, as iron implements

were a great temptation, they begged that none might be left carelessly about.-Although, however, the rope machinery and other articles remained, for many nights, unguarded on the beach, and their opportunities on board were numberless, yet not one theft occurred during the whole of our sojourn among them.

That proud and haughty feeling of national superiority, so strongly existing among the common class of British seamen, which induces them to hold all foreigners cheap, and to treat them with contempt, often calling them outlandish lubbers in their own country, was, at this island, completely subdued and tamed by the gentle manners and kind behaviour of the most pacific people upon earth. Although completely intermixed, and often working together, both on shore and on board, not a single quarrel or complaint took place on either side during the whole of our stay; on the contrary, each succeeding day added to friendship and cordiality.

Notwithstanding it was an infringement of their established rules for strangers to land upon their coasts, yet they granted every possible indulgence, and conceded the point as far as they could; for their dispositions seeined evidently at war with the unsocial law. When any of the officers wandered into the country beyond the bounds prescribed, they were never rudely repulsed, as in China or Morocco, but mildly entreated to return, as a favour to those in attendance, lest they should incur blame; and, as this appeal was powerful, it was never disregarded.

They erected little temporary


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