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of any hostile power, either going to or returning from that country: we should become formidable neighbours to the Dutch and to the Spaniards, and in the event of a war with either of them, attack with advantage their most valuable settlements. In short, all the arguments in favour of a settlement at Balambangan may with much more propriety be urged for one in Cochin China

Should any thing that has been said, appear sufficiently wellgrounded to induce the Company to form a settlement in Cochin China, it may be effected on principles strictly just and at a small expense. Several of the royal family, besides the Mandarines who were in Bengal, with many officers of the late government, urged me to use my endeavours with the government of Bengal to induce it to afford them assistance, promising a powerful support whenever we should heartily engage in their cause: to restore their lawful sovereign to the throne, would be now a measure so popular, that the sincerity of their offers cannot be doubted. To relieve an unhappy people groaning under the weight of the most cruel oppression would be an act worthy the humanity of the British nation. Fifty European infantry, half that number of artillery, and two hundred seapoys, would be sufficient for this and every other purpose. The natives of Cochin China are infi

nitely below the inhabitants of Hindustan in military knowledge; I have however no doubt that a body of them well disciplined and regularly paid,, would prove as faithful to us, and contribute as much to the security of any possessions which we might acquire to the eastward, as the sepoys do to our territories in India. In case of any distant expeditions, they would be found superior; being entirely free from all religious prejudices, and having no objection to the sea.

While Cochin China remains in its present distracted state, a favourable opening is presented to the first European nation that may attempt to obtain a footing in the country. Three years ago, the French sent a frigate to Turon Bay, and from the pains taken to be informed of the produce and political state of the country, there is strong reason to conclude some such design was in agitation. Since that period, the accurate accounts Mr. Chevalier must have received of Padre Loreiro during his residence with him at Chandernagore, added to the loss of all their settlements in India, will most probably induce them to resume it. If they do not, some other power may adopt the scheme. Should the Company therefore entertain a design of making an establishment in Cochin China, no time should be lost in carrying it into execution. 1778.

POETRY.

352

POETRY.

PARADISE AND THE PERI.

From Moore's "Lalla Rookh," an Oriental Romance.

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"Mid flowers that never shall fade or fall!
Though mine are the gardens of earth and sea,
"And the stars themselves have flowers for me,
"One blossom of Heaven out-blooms them all!

Though sunny the Lake of cool CASHMERE, "With its plane-tree Isle reflected clear,

"And sweetly the founts of that Valley fall; Though bright are the waters of SING-SU-HAY, "And the golden floods, that thitherward stray, "Yet-oh 'tis only the Blest can say

"How the waters of Heaven outshine them all!

"Go, wing thy flight from star to star,
"From world to luminous world, as far

"As the universe spreads it flaming wall;
"Take all the pleasures of all the spheres,
"And multiply each through endless years,

"One minute of Heaven is worth them all!"

The

The glorious Angel, who was keeping
The gates of Light, beheld her weeping;
And, as he nearer drew and listen'd
To her sad song, a tear-drop glisten'd
Within his eyelids, like the spray

From Eden's fountain, when it lies
On the blue flow'r, which-Bramins say-
Blooms no where but in Paradise!
"Nymph of a fair, but erring line!".
Gently he said " One hope is thine.
"'Tis written in the Book of Fate,
"The Peri yet may be forgiven
"Who brings to this Eternal Gate

"The Gift that is most dear to Heaven!

"Go, seek it, and redeem thy sin;

"'Tis sweet to let the Pardon'd in !"

Rapidly as comets run

To th' embraces of the Sun :-
Fleeter than the starry brands,
Flung at night from angel hands
At those dark and daring sprites,
Who would climb th' empyreal heights,
Down the blue vault the PERI flies,

And, lighted earthward by a glance
That just then broke from morning's eyes,
Hung hovering o'er our world's expanse.

But whither shall the Spirit go
To find this gift for heav'n?" I know
"The wealth," she cries, "of every urn,
"In which unnumber'd rubies burn,
"Beneath the pillars of CHILMINAR ;—
"I know where the Isles of Perfume are
"Many a fathom down in the sea,
"To the south of sun-bright ARABY ;-
"I know too where the Genii hid

"The jewell'd cup of their King JAMISHED,
"With Life's elixir sparkling high-

"But gifts like these are not for the sky.

"Where was there ever a gem that shone

"Like the steps of ALLA's wonderful Throne ?

"And the Drops of Life-oh! what would they be
"In the boundless Deep of Eternity?"

While thus she mus'd, her pinions fann'd
The air of that sweet Indian land,

Whose air is balm; whose ocean spreads
VOL. LIX.

29

O'er

O'er coral rocks and amber beds;

Whose mountains, pregnant by the beam
Of the warm sun, with diamonds teem;
Whose rivulets are like rich brides,
Lovely, with gold beneath their tides;
Whose sandal groves and bowers of spice
Might be a Peri's Paradise !

But crimson now her rivers ran

With human blood-the smell of death
Came reeking from those spicy bowers,
And man, the sacrifice of man,

Mingled his taint with every breath
Upwafted from the innocent flowers!
Land of the Sun! what foot invades
Thy Pagods and thy pillar'd shades-
Thy cavern shrines, and Idol stones,
Thy Monarchs and their thousand Thrones?
'Tis He of GAZNA-fierce in wrath

He comes, and INDIA's diadems
Lie scatter'd in his ruinous path.-

His blood-hounds he adorns with gems, Torn from the violated necks

Of many a young and lov'd Sultana;
Maidens, within their pure Zenana,
Priests in the very fane he slaughters,
And choaks up with the glittering wrecks
Of golden shrines the sacred waters!

Downward the PERI turns her gaze,
And, through the war-field's bloody haze
Beholds a youthful warrior stand,

Alone, beside his native river,—
The red blade broken in his hand

And the last arrow in his quiver.

"Live," said the Conqueror, "live to share
The trophies and the crowns I bear!"
Silent that youthful warrior stood-
Silent he pointed to the flood

All crimson with his country's blood,
Then sent his last remaining dart,
For answer, to th' Invader's heart.

False flew the shaft, though pointed well;
The Tyrant liv'd, the Hero fell!-

Yet mark'd the PERI where he lay,

And when the rush of war was past,

Swiftly

Swiftly descending on a ray

Of morning light, she caught the lastLast glorious drop his heart had shed, Before its free-born spirit fled !

"Be this," she cried, as she wing'd her flight, My welcome gift at the Gates of Light.

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Though foul are the drops that oft distil "On the field of warfare, blood like this, "For Liberty shed, so holy is,

"It would not stain the purest rill,

"That sparkles among the Bowers of Bliss!

"Oh! if there be, on this earthly sphere,

"A boon, an offering Heaven holds dear,

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'Tis the last libation Liberty draws

'From the heart that bleeds and breaks in her cause I'

"Sweet," said the Angel, as she gave
The gift into his radiant hand,
"Sweet is our welcome of the Brave
"Who die thus for their native Land.-
"But see-alas!-the crystal bar
"Of Eden moves not-holier far

"Than ev'n this drop the boon must be,

That opes the Gates of Heav'n for thee!"

Her first fond hope of Eden blighted,
Now among AFRIC's Lunar Mountains,
Far to the South, the PERI lighted;

And sleek'd her plumage at the fountains
Of that Egyptian tide,-whose birth
Is hidden from the sons of earth,
Deep in those solitary woods,
Where oft the Genii of the Floods
Dance round the cradle of their Nile,
And hail the new-born Giant's smile!
Thence, over EGYPT's palmy groves,

Her grots, and sepulchres of Kings
The exil'd Spirit sighing roves ;
And now hangs listening to the doves
In warm ROSETTA'S vale-now loves

To watch the moonlight on the wings

Of the white pelicans that break
The azure calm of Moris' Lake.
"Twas a fair scene-a Land more bright
Never did mortal eye behold!

Who could have thought, that saw this night
Those valleys and their fruits of gold

2Q2

Basking

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