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139 Penal Laws.—Barbarous Customs at Tongabatoo. 140 141 Barbarous Customs of the Islanders of Tongaiaboo. 142
that man who has shewn a disregard for the life of another. Against such all nature rises in arms; but it is not so against him who steals my property. Natural law gives me no right to take away his life, as by that, the horse he steals, is as much his property as mine. If, then, I have any right, it must be from a compact made between us, that he who deprives the other of his horse shall die. But this is a false compact; because no man has a right to barter his life, no more than take it away, as it is not his own. And besides, the compact is inadequate, and would be set aside even in a court of modern equity, a3 there is a great penalty for trifling convenience, since it is farbetter that two men should live, than one man should ride. But a compact that is false between two men, is equally so between a hundred, and a hundred thousand; for as ten millions of circles can never make a square, so the united voice of myriads cannot lend the smallest foundation to falsehood. It is thus that reason speaks, and untutored nature says the same thing—
"Savages, that are directed by natural law alone, are very tender of the lives of each other; they seldom shed blood, but to retaliate former cruelty.
"Our Saxon ancestors, fierce as they were in war, had but few executions in times of peace; and in all commencing governments that have the print of nature still strong upon them, scarce any crime is held capital.
"It is among the citizens of a refined community, that Penal Laws, which are in the hands of the rich, are laid upon the poor. Government, while it grows older, seems to acquire the moroseness of age; and as if our property were become dearer in proportion as it increased, as if the more enormous our wealth, the more extensive our fears, all our possessions are paled up with new edicts every day, and hung round with gibbets to scare every invader.
"I cannot tell, whether it is from the number of our Penal Laws, or the licentiousness of our people, that this country should show more convicts in a year, than half the dominions of Europe united. Perhaps it is owing to both; for they mutually produce each other. When by indiscriminate Penal Laws, a nation beholds the same punishment affixed to dissimilar
degrees of guilt, from perceiving- no distinction in the penalty, the people are led to lose all sense of distinction in the crime, and this distinction is the bulwark of all morality: thus the multitude of laws produce new vices, and new vices call for fresh restraints.
"It were to be wished then, that power, instead of contriving newlaws to punish vice, instead of drawing hard the cords of society till-a convulsion come to burst them, instead of cutting away wretches as useless before we have tried their utility, instead of converting correction into vengeance, it were to be wished that we tried the restrictive arts of Government, and made Law the protector, but not the tyrant of the people. We should then find, that creatures whose souls are held as dross, only wanted the hand of a refiner: we should then find, that wretches, now stuck up for long tortures, lest luxury should feel a momentary pang, might, if properly treated, serve to sinew the state in times of danger; that as their faces are like ours, their hearts arc so too; that few minds are so base, as that perseverance cannot amend; that a man may see his last crime without dying for it; and that very little blood will serve to cement our security."
If these invaluable considerations were duly attended to, I feel confident some plan might be devised which would lessen the frequency of crime, and which would tend to ameliorate the present severity of our Penal Code. That they may meet the eyes of some who having the will, possess also the power of giving them effect, is the sincere wish of, Sir, your most obedient servant, E. W.
Liverpool, 11*71 Dec. 1820.
Barbarous Customs, formerly practised among the Islanders of Tongataboo in the South Seas.
The following facts are taken from the first Missionary Voyage to the Pacific ocean in 1797. To several of oar readers, no doubt they are already known; yet a far greater number, we are induced to believe, are ignorant of the moral degradation which human nature exhibits in a state of savage darkness. But it will be pleasing to all to learn, that, through the missionary exertions which have been made,
the light of civilization and of the gospel having dawned upon them, they have assumed a new character, substituting in no small degree, humanity and reason in the room of savage ferocity and brutal superstition.
"Moomooe, (an aged chief,) was now incapable of turning himself, and appeared to be hastening fast to dissolution; nevertheless he desired us to send him a cuckoo clock, and a few of onr number to sing psalms for him.
"We were greatly shocked with the behaviour of Tbogahowe, who two days ago had caused a young man, his younger brother, to be strangled, that his father might recover. The victim he had buried within a few yards of the house where we were, and he now came to mourn over him, which he did by sitting upon the grave with his elbows upon his knees ; and, covering his face with his hands, remained a long time in silence, and then departed very thoughtful.
"The unhappy youth, who thus fell asacriflce to the barbarous superstition of the islanders, had lived at some distance from Noogollifva where his father lay sick, and by order of whom he was sent under a pretence of having his little fingers cut off, (a custom here exceedingly common) with a view to appease the anger of Odooa, that the sick might recover, but, in fact, that he might be strangled.
"Upon the arrival oiColelallo, forthat was his name, he was saluted in a cordial manner by his elder brother Tbogahowe, and soon after went to see his father, whose attendants seized him with a view to strangle him instantly ; when he, guessing their intention, said, if they would use gentler means he would submit to his father's 'ill; but they continuing their violence, he by great exertions beat them off. Three feejee men were then called, and these being joined by a sister of the unfortunate Colelallo, they accomplished his death."
But these inhumanities were found insufficient to prolong the life of the dying chief, or to avert that destiny to which both civilized and savage must inevitably submit. His death took place a few days afterward, which was attended with the following barbarous ceremonies, connected with his funeral
solemnities. "April 2i»h 1797.—Foonogge paid
us a visit this morning, and after him
came our friend Mytyle, who informed us that Moomooe had departed this life about four o'clock this morning. The people who passed from Noogollifva, with their faces bruised, and blood running down their cheeks, were numerous: instead of cloth they wore matting round them, and a twig of the chesnut-trce about their necks: this, it seems, is their mourning dress. About one o'clock Toogahowe arrived; and soon after Ambler, accompanied by brother Bowel, went to see him. • He was sitting in a small neat house, giving orders to several chiefs who sat around him, concerning the procuring the vast supplies of hogs, &c. that will be consumed at the funeral. About three o'clock the body of the deceased king was carried past our house, at a small distance from the beach; it was laid on a kind of bier made of the boughs of trees, and supported by about twenty men: several relatives of the deceased preceded the corpse in their mourning dresses, as above; some of them had cut their heads with shark's teeth, and the blood was running in streams down their faces. Behind the corpse was a multitude of people of both sexes.
"A female chief called Fefene Duatonga, who is very corpulent, was carried on a kind of frame made of two long bamboos, between which she sat on a piece of matting, and was borne by four men. Near her Futtafaihe walked; and next them two women, who were devoted to be strangled at the funeral: one was weeping, but the other appeared little concerned; they both were wives of the deceased. Some of us followed them to the fiatooka, near which they deposited the body for the present, in a house carried thither for tlte purpose, and which was hung round with black cloth. This fiatooka is situated on a spot of ground about four acres. A mount rises with a gentle slope about seven feet, and is about one hundred and twenty yards in circumference at the base: upon the top stands a house neatly made, which is about thirty feet long, and half that in width. The roof is thatched, and the sides and ends left open. In the middle of this house is the grave, the sides, ends, and bottom of which, are of coral stone, with a cover of the same: the floor of the house is of small stone?. The cloa and other trees grow round the fiatooka.
143 Barbarous Customs of the Islanders of Tongatahoo. 144
"To the left of the tomb, and without the enclosure, sat about four hundred people: the major part of them were men, for whom yava was brewing. Opposite to these were placed five large roasted hogs, twenty baskets of roasted yams, and about one hundred pieces of mai (or mahie,) the sour paste. A few paces from the provisions sat seven or eight men, who who were tabooed, and exempt from cutting themselves. One of these gave orders concerning the disposal of the hogs, yams, and yava; all that drank of the latter were mentioned by name, by a person appointed to that office by Fefene Duatonga, who now seemed to have the management of the funeral. They did not forget us; but in dealing out the liquor sent us each a part, which we gave to the natives that sat by us. Persons of both sexes seated themselves in different parts of the ground, beating their faces dreadfully; and after having emptied two bowls of yava, dispersed.
"May 2d.—The crowd in our neighbourhood is prodigious, and alarming to us; and we are informed they are likely to make a stay of two or three months, in which time He alone who reigns on high knows what excesses they may run into towards us.
"As the funeral was to take place to-day, brother Bowel went with Ambler to Bunghye to see the ceremony, and found about four thousand persons sitting round the place were the fiatooka stands. A few minutes after our arrival we heard a great shouting and blowing of conch-shells at a small distance; soon after about an hundred men appeared, armed with clubs and spears, and rushing into the area, began to cut and mangle themselves in a most dreadful manner: many struck their heads violently with their clubs; and the blows, which might be heard thirty or forty yards off, they repeated till the blood ran down in streams. Others who had spears, thrust them through their thighs, arms, and cheeks, all the while calling on the deceased in a most affecting manner.
"A native of Feejee, who had been a servant of the deceased, appeared quite frantic; he entered the area with fire in his hand, and having previously oiled his hair, set it on fire, and ran about with it all on flame. When they had satisfied themselves with this manner of torment, they sat
down, beat their faces with their fists, and then retired. A second party went through the same cruelties; and after them a third entered, shouting and blowing the shells: four of the foremost held stones which they used to knock out their teeth; those who blew the shells cut their heads with them in a shocking manner. A man that had a spear run it through his arm just above the elbow, and with it sticking fast ran about the area for some time. Another, who seemed to be a principal chief, acted as if quite bereft of his senses; he ran to every corner of the area, and at each station beat his head with a club till the blood flowed down his shoulders. After this brother Bowell, shocked, and unable to bear the scene any longer, returned home. Futtafaihe also came to our dwelling and stayed about two hours.
"At two o'clock in the afternoon four of us went to the fiatooka, where the natives of both sexes were still at the dreadful work of cutting and mangling themselves. We had not been long there before we heard at a dis-' tance, low but expressive sounds of the deepest sorrow and lamentation: this was a party of about one hundred and forty women marching in single file, bearing each a basket of sand; eighty men followed in the same manner, with each two baskets of coral sand, and sung, as they marched, words importing, " This is a blessing to the dead;" and were answered in responses by the women. Another company of women brought a large quantity of cloth, and answered in their turn to the above responses. Thus these three bands walked towards the tomb, filling or covering that part of the mount between the house and the place where the corpse lay, and the grave, with fine mats and cloth; after which, seven men blew conch-shells, while others sung in a doleful strain, expressive of the most heart-felt grief. The corpse was now conveyed to the grave upon a large bale of black cloth, with which, and fine mats, they covered it. The bearers, as they went, walked stooping low, and carrying the bale in their hands.
"Whilst these services were performing, a company of men and women came into the area, and cut themselves dreadfully. After them another file of females, nineteen in number, brought
each a bag of their most valuable articles; and twenty-one more had each a fine mat in their hands, all of which they deposited in the tomb, being, as they call it, a present for the dead; and immediately after came a present from Toogahowe, consisting of thirtyfive bales of cloth, each bale carried by four men on a frame. After the presents, another party of mourners entered the area, sixteen of whom had recently cut their little fingers off: these were followed by another party with clubs and spears, who beat themselves as before described, and disfigured their faces with cocoa-nut husks fixed on the knuckles of both hands. We noticed that those who had held offices, or were related to the deceased, were the most cruel to themselves; some of whom thrust two, three, and even four spears into their arms, and so danced round the area, and some broke the ends of the spears in their flesh. The grave was covered with a hewn stone about eight feet long, four broad, and one thick: this stone they had suspended with two large ropes, which went round two strong piles drove into the ground at the end of the house, and thence led to the area, where about two hundred men held by them; and whilst they lowered it slowly, women and children wept aloud, or sung words importing, " My rather, my father! the best of chiefs," tec. More cloth was then brought to be put into the tomb; and another party entered, and abused themselves as before. After these paroxysms of grief they sat awhile in silence; and when they had pulled the rope clear off the stone which covered the grave, those on the mount gave a great shout, which was answered by a general tearing of the leaves from the necks of all present; after which they dispersed."
OBSERVATIONS HISTORICAL AND DESCRIPTIVE RESPECTING LIVERPOOL. [Con/otMcd from col. GO.]
The commerce of Liverpool is too vast and complicated to admit of particular detail in this general sketch; nor can we presume to trace its progressive movements from the commencement that we have noticed, to its present state of unrivalled prosperity.
On this extensive subject our observations must be confined to a few prominent particulars.
We have already noticed, that at a very early period a communication was opened between Liverpool and Ireland. This circumstance induced many industrious adventurers to quit their native country, and take up their residence in this rising town. This gave an extension to the general commercial plans that had been concerted, and laid the foundation of several mercantile houses of great respectability, while the intercourse held with strangers contributed much to form the local character and manners of the inhabitants.
Speculative men, prepared for every enterprise, were not inattentive to the trade by which Bristol had been enriched; and although they were not in a capacity to become its rival, they knew how to share in the advantages, of commerce, by following an example which it was honourable to imitate. Availing themselves of the facilities which their port afforded, they freighted their vessels with such articles as were constantly in demand in the West Indies, and success crowning their exertions, urged them to undertake new adventures, and inspired them with perseverance.
The vicinity of Liverpool to the flourishing town of Manchester, secured to its harbour those advantages which from its geographical situation it had a right to claim; and the improvements which were constantly making in the manufactures of Manchester, enabled them to extend their commercial connections, and to hold a respectable rank in the foreign markets to which their merchandise was consigned. Prior to this period, the Liverpool merchants had procured from Scotland a variety of articles, which the manufacturers of Manchester thought they could render equal in quality and at a reduced price. A trial was made, and the experiment succeeded; nor was it long before the checks, stripes, osnaburghs, and handkerchiefs of Manchester, obtained such a decided preference as to gain for the merchants of Liverpool a monopoly of coarse goods in the markets of the West Indies. Hence in the short space of fourteen years, from 1709 to 1723, the number of ships belonging to this port had increased from 84 to 131. In 1720 its 147
Historical Observations respecting Liverpool.
population amounted to about 10,440. —Another circumstance which tended to promote its prosperity, was an act which passed in the latter year for making the rivers Mersey and Irwell navigable as far as Manchester, and for opening a communication with Northwich and Winsford bridge by means of the Weaver. But these advantages were inconsiderable when compared with the benefits resulting from a contraband trade that was opened with Spanish America.
The goods exported from Old Spain on their arrival at Vera Cruz, Porto Bello, Mexico, Lima, and Quito, by means of a privileged company, were charged three hundred per cent, upon the inhabitants more than they had been accustomed to pay. The complaints of the oppressed were heard in our West India islands, and vast quantities of Manchester goods were smuggled from Jamaica by Spanish merchants to such ports as they found accessible. This branch of commerce was carried on to such an extent, that according to B. Edwards, in his history of theWest Indies, British manufactured goods, to the amount of a million and a half annually, found a market in the Spanish territories. This trade continued in full vigour from 1722 to 1740, when the vigilance of the Spanish cruisers rendered the advantages precarious; and after suffering a gradual decline, thistrade was totally abolished by the British legislature.
Scarcely had this trade begun to decline, before Liverpool engaged, on the coast of Africa, in a traffic which is a dishonour to human nature, and put into.her treasury the price of blood. London, Bristol, and other seaports, participated in the same nefarious commerce; but this, instead of furnishing any palliative of the enormity, only serves to discover the extent and magnitude of an evil, which seemed to appeal to heaven for vengeance. In 17C4 Liverpool cleared out 74 ships for the African trade; and to such a height had this traffic advanced, that upwards of one fourth of all the shipping belonging to the port, sailed for the Coast,
"To buy the muscles am! the bones of man."
It has been estimated that one twelfth part of all the shipping of Britain is at present navigated by Liverpool ; that it lias one fourth of her foreign
trade; one sixth part of her general commerce; and one half of the trade of the city of London. In the slave trade, prior to its abolition, it is said to have had five eighths of the African trade of Britain, and three sevenths of all the African trade of Europe.
The increase of population in Liverpool kept pace with its increasing commerce. We have already noticed, that in 1720, the inhabitants were estimated at 10,440. In 1773 they were augmented to 34,407: in 1790, to 56,732: in 1810, to 77,653: in 1812, to 94,376: and at present the total amount of population is estimated by some at 110,000, and by others at 120,000 souls.
As the inhabitants advanced in wealth and power, their habitations increased also both in number and respectability. From the year 1680 to 1765, the area of the town was enlarged 770,000 square yards; and from 1765 to 1790, 2,816,000 additional square yards augmented its dimensions. Of these square yards, some portions still remain unoccupied, but a considerable extent is covered with buildings.
It is impossible to form any just conception of a large seaport, famous throughout the world for its shipping and commerce, without turning our attention to its Docks and Harbours. The tides which wash the wharfs and quays of Liverpool that are erected near the shores, flow with a considerable degree of rapidity ; and sometimes, with particular winds, the force of the tempest is but too conspicuous on the surface of the agitated waves. On occasions like these, the harbour would afford to the numerous ships which frequent the port, a very doubtful security. A commercial navy thus crowded thickly together, must have been exposed to imminent hazards, and wrecks and damage must have been the inevitable consequence. In addition to this, as the ground near the shore is always dry when the tide retires, numerous vessels must every day have lain on the sands, if no other place of security had been provided for their reception. The Docks therefore, which are open with every tide, for the entrance and departure of vessels, have been erected both from necessity and expediency.
So early as the reign of Elizabeth, a mole had been constructed for the lay