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attempts to preserve the monopoly of the clove and nutmeg trade should be regarded as a beacon to prevent us from splitting upon the same rock. They were anxious to engress the trade in these articles; it is our interest, exclusive of the produce of our own settlements, to reduce the cinnamon annually exported. They discovered that cloves and nutmegs were not confined to the islands and establishment which owned their sway. We know that, although Ceylon produces cinnamon of a quality unequalled, yet we also know that the plant abounds in the eastern islands, and that they afford large quantities of a secondary quality. We have also strong reasons to believe that these is lands would afford cinnamon which would rival the finest on Ceylon, were an equal attention extended to its culture and preparation.
The Dutch used every means in their power to limit the produce and diminish the exportation of cloves and nutmegs. This was done to increase the value of these articles. These restrictive measures led to smuggling the cultivation of cloves and nutmegs in different countries, and to voyages to ascertain whether they grew in islands and situations which had not been sufficiently explored.
We, on the other hand, have not collected and exported all the cinnamon which we might have done; and in so far as we have from inattention or indifference, omitted to supply the demands of Europe and America with Ceylon cinnamon, this neglect has contributed to encourage the impor
tation of cinnamon from China, which is now very generally substituted for the finest Ceylon cinnamon.
The means adopted by the Dutch to obtain the exclusive trade in cloves and nutmegs are worthy of attention, because, from the similarity of our prospects, their failure may teach us to avoid the same ineffectual or hurtful measures, and perhaps open our eyes to a more liberal, and not improbably to a more efficient and advantageous policy. Shortly after they had established themselves in the Moluccas, they attempted to confine the growth of the clove trees to the islands of Amboina, Honimoa, Oma, and Noussalant; and the nutmeg tree to the island of Banda. To carry their intentions into effect, they employed extirpators to destroy the clove and nutmeg trees that grew in the neighbouring islands which owned their sway; and they paid an annual tribute to the kings of Ternate, Tidor, and Bonton, to permit and assist the extirpators to destroy the trees which abounded in the Archipelago, of which they were masters. When the crop of cloves and nutmegs was abundant, they burned large quantities, sometimes in the islands where they were produced, and sometimes after they had been landed in Holland. contraband trade between the spice islands and the large island of Celebes they never could prevent. The English had generally an establishment, either on the main land of Borneo, or some of its dependencies; by which means they were always readily supplied by the na tives with whatever spices they
required, as they paid a higher price for them than the Dutch.
Captain Forrest ascertained that the nutmeg tree grew in New Guinea, and transplanted a number of plants to the Philippine islands. The French have succeeded in introducing the clove and nutmeg trees into the isles of France and Bourbon. They have likewise introduced them into Guiana and Cayenne. In the year 1785 there were 10,416 clove trees on the Isle of France. The English also have cultivated the clove tree in the West India islands. Martinico in the year 1797 imported into London 380 lb. and the year following 200 lb.; St. Kitt's, 2981 lb.
The extreme cupidity of the Dutch eventually ruined their own prospects. Had they been contented with moderate profits, the incitement to a contraband trade would have been much diminished, and foreign nations would have had fewer incentives to incur much expense and labour in cultivating spices in their own establishments. Our situation with regard to the cinnamon trade is in many respects similar to that of the Duch in the commerce of cloves and nutmegs we have too long gazed with a frigid indifference upon the rapidly increasing cinnamon trade of the Chinese, and treated with contempt their commerce in this article. Should it not rather have excited us to adopt effectual means to supply the demands of the western world from our own establishments? Even admitting that the cinnamon exported from China is inferior to the produce of Ceylon, its quality however is such as to serve as a substitute, and may
eventually rival the best we can produce. The third quality of the Ceylon cinnamon is by many considered equal, if not superior, to that brought from China, and could in all probability be supplied at as low, if not a lower, price. This quality of cinnamon might in Ceylon be collected to an almost unlimited quantity. A large importation of this sort into the London market, and sold at a moderate profit, would in all probability soon lessen the demand for that imported from China.
By the London price current of Jan. 10, 1815, we find the different qualities of cinnamon quoted at from 8s. 3d. per lb. to 13s. 3d. The finest quality is becoming lower in price. In the same price current casia is quoted at from 40l. to 451. per cwt. or from about 7s. to 8s. per lb. Inferring that the third sort of Ceylon cinnamon is of as good a quality, and will fetch as high a price as the Chinese cinnamon, the purchasers of the rejected Ceylon cinnamon must have found a good market, and have at least lately made a profitable speculation. Cinnamon oil is quoted at from 25s. to 26s. per oz. To procure an ounce of cinnamon oil about 11 lb. of cinnamon are required. While the oil fetches this price only, the Ceylon government cannot, considering the expenses incurred, realise much more than 1s. 6d. per lb. for the cinnamon used in distillation; and it will evidently appear that when 2s. per lb. can be obtained, there is in general very little encouragement to expend much cinnamon in making oil.
The most certain, and undoubtedly
edly the most avowable means of acquiring or preserving a monopoly of an article of commerce is to furnish it in abundance, at a comparatively cheap rate. The exportation of the third quality of cinnamon would very considerably contribute to this desirable end. Great part of the small quantity which has been exported has found its way into Europe and America under the denomination of casia. The duty levied upon that which has in trade been styled casia, should be the same as is levied upon cinnamon; or the duty upon the third quality of cinnamon should be reduced to that which is paid upon the importation of the casia of commerce. The exportation of cinnamon of this quality to England would at any time have been of importance to the trade of Ceylon; but in consequence of the recent entire subjugation of the interior of the islands, this measure becomes of infinitely greater consequence. By the fortunate termination of the Kandian war, the sources and opportunities for collecting and preparing cinnamon are greatly increased. The enlarged quantity procurable will, however, be chiefly of the third sort; and without some means be adopted for collecting and exporting this quality of cinnamon, it will appear like neglecting one of the many advantages which promise to follow this very important acquisition. With the exception of the narrow indented valleys which intersect the hills and mountains, great part of the interior of Ceylon is covered with lofty trees and low brushwood in the most luxuriant degree of vegetation. The most
rugged and difficultly accessible mountains and situations abound more with large trees than those hills or eminences whose declivity is more gradual, and whose surface is more even. This arises chiefly from the chena or dry grain cultivation, which is much practised upon the most accessible of the hills in the interior. Chenas are cultivated by cutting down a number of the large trees and all the brushwood upon the declivity or top of a hill. The trunks and branches of the large trees and the shrubby bushes are burned, and the ashes spread upon the ground, which is eventually sown with dry grain. The roots of the trees and bushes are allowed to remain. One crop only is reaped. The spot of partially cleared ground becomes in a few years covered with underwood and young trees. The space of from 15 to 20 years elapses generally before the ground is again cleared, and another crop sown. This statement will readily account for a circumstance confirmed by the chalias, that on the rugged and difficultly accessible hills large cinnamon trees, which afford cinnamon of coarse quality, are found,
and that cinnamon plants of an age well adapted for yielding fine cinnamon are obtained upon the recently cultivated chenas. These patches of high ground cultivation form, however, but a small proportion, when compared to the uncultivated and uncultivable, rugged, and precipitous mountains, with which the interior of the island abounds. It may likewise be mentioned that the cinnamon plant is less hardy than many of those which grow in the same jungle with it; and that
when its shoots are cut, and the young scions only permitted to remain, the plant becomes less, and less able to resist the encroachments of the surrounding underwood, by which means it not unfrequently becomes choaked and overgrown.
Another, and not an unimportant concern, demands the attention of government-the collection and preparation of the receptacle of the embryo seed of the cinnamon plant, the casia bud of commerce. The full grown trees of the interior will afford them in great abundance. They are frequently substituted for the more expensive cinnamon, and fetch a good price. The collection of them in Ceylon might be extensive, and effected at a very small expense. Labour, which is all that is required, is cheap. They could be collected by boys and the drying, sorting, &c. of them might be entrusted to females. We might soon be able to rival the Chinese monopoly of this article. The Dutch, however eager they were to extend the exportation of colonial produce, seem to have entirely neglected the preparation of this important article of trade. Indeed I have not been able to learn that they were aware of the fact that casia buds are the produce of the cinnamon plant. The native headinen now employed in the cinnamon department, and who were in the same situation under the Dutch, express their entire ignorance of the circumstance.
In the London New Price Current of Jan. 10, 1815, casia buds are quoted at from 321. to 371. per cwt. or from about 5s. 6d. to 6s. 6d. per lb. The profit upon this arVOL. LIX.
ticle might be considerable. The more carefully and extensively we consider the subject, we shall, I think, be the more convinced that we must trust chiefly to the plantations for cinnamon of the finest quality, and that notwithstanding the recent important acquisition of the interior of the island, we should prosecute the cultivation of cinnamon with unabated zeal and perseverance.
ON THE GREENLAND OR POLAR ICE.
By W. Scoresby, jun. M.W.S. (From Memoirs of the Wernerian Natura! History Society.]
Greenland is a country where every object is strikingly singular, or highly magnificent. The atmosphere, the land, and the ocean, each exhibit remarkable or sublime appearances.
With regard to the atmosphere, several peculiarities may be noticed, viz. its darkness of colour and density; its frequent production of crystallised snow in a wonderful perfection and variety of form and texture; and its astonishing sudden changes from calm to storm,-from fair weather to foul, and vice versa.
The land is of itself a sublime object; its stupendous mountains rising by steep acclivities from the very margin of the ocean to an immense height, terminating in ridged, conical, or pyramidal summits; its surface, contrasting its native protruding dark-coloured rocks, with its burthen of purest snow; the whole viewed under the density of a gloomy sky, forms a picture impressive and grand. Its most remarkable inhabitant is the White or Polar Bear, which 2 M
indeed also occurs on the ice. This ferocious animal seems to be the natural lord of those regions. He preys indiscriminately on quadruped, fowl, reptile, and fish; all behold him with dread, and flee his presence. The seals signify their fear of him by their constant watching, and betake themselves precipitately to the water on his approach. Carrion, therefore, (of which the carcase of the whale is at a certain season the most plentiful), affords him a passive, sure, and favourite food. His sense of smelling is peculiarly acute: in his march, he is frequently observed to face the breeze, to rear his head, and snuff the passing scent, whereby he can discover the nearest route to his odorous banquet, though the distance be incredibly great.
The water of the ocean is not the least interesting of the elements, particularly as affording the bed, and partly the materials for the most prodigious masses of ice. Its colour is peculiar. Its products are numerous, and of particular importance. It is here that the huge Mysticetus, or Whalebone Whale, takes up his residence, and collects his food ;it is here that he sports and astonishes, by his vast bulk and proportionate strength;-and it is here that he becomes the object of maritime adventure, and a source of commercial riches.
Ice, an interesting production. Of the inanimate productions of Greenland, none perhaps excites so much interest and astonishment in a stranger, as the ice in its great abundance and variety. The
stupendous masses, known by the name of Ice-Islands, FloatingMountains, or Icebergs, common to Davis' Straits and sometimes met with here, from their height, various forms, and the depth of water in which they ground, are calculated to strike the beholder with wonder: yet the fields of ice, more peculiar to Greenland, are not less astonishing. Their deficiency in elevation is sufficiently compensated by their amazing extent of surface. Some of them have been observed near a hundred miles in length, and more than half that breadth; each consisting of a single sheet of ice, having its surface raised in general four or six feet above the level of the water, and its base depressed to the depth of near twenty feet beneath.
The various kinds of Ice described,
The ice in general is designated by a variety of appellations, distinguishing it according to the size or number of pieces, their form of aggregation, thickness, transparency, &c. I perhaps cannot better explain the terms in common acceptation amongst the whale-fishers, than by marking the disruption of a field. The thickest and strongest field cannot resist the power of a heavy swell; indeed, such are much less capable of bending without being dissevered, than the thinner ice which is more pliable. When a field, by the set of the current, drives to the southward, and being deserted by the loose ice, becomes exposed to the effects of a ground swell, it presently breaks into a great many pieces, few of which will exceed