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The little pitted speck in garnered fruit
minds of the taught from subjects which individuals, while in our educational sysmight be more congenial to them to sub- tem it affects our rising generation. It is jects which are not so congenial, but like which, as the saying is, are more "paying." It would, indeed, require much originality in a child to overcome the inclination to cultivate the more "paying "We are now gathering the fruits of the things and to overcome at the same time labors of our forefathers, and to extirpate the objections of teachers to travelling "the little pitted speck" that moulders outside the ordinary routine subjects. them should be one of our first duties.
C. B. ROYLANCE KENT.
From Blackwood's Magazine.
THE SCENE OF THE RIOTS IN CHINA:
Thus, the result is to produce uniformity of mind both at our schools and at our universities. Professor Max Müller says: "Now, my young friends seem all alike, all equally excellent, but so excellent that you can hardly tell one from the other." Thus, we see, our present system of edu cation tends to destroy individuality in the TWELVE HUNDRED MILES ON THE YANGTZEmethods of education itself and also in the minds of those whom it educates. And, as this affects our rising and future generations, the importance of the matter can hardly be exaggerated. Looked at from this point of view, that part of the tendency to uniformity which we have called the educational part is more important than either the political or the economic part. Even as it is the most subtle, it is the most potent in its consequences.
Here, again, it is not denied that many advantages have been derived from our present system of education; and, indeed, it would seem as though examinations (within certain limits) were a necessity. Nevertheless, the system is not an unmixed good, as the considerations we have stated clearly show.
RISING in the eternal ice-fields of the Tibetan plateau, draining, but little lower in its course, a considerable portion of the Kuenlun range of mountains, - for from these distant peaks the three rivers of Nameitu, Toktani, and Ketsi flow into the main stream, augmented by the many torrents and rivers of Se-chuen, and in its lower course the recipient of hundreds of tributaries, one of which alone, the Han River, though it mixes its waters with the Yangtze at a spot six hundred miles from the sea, is itself navigable in summer for six hundred miles, the Yangtze-Kiang, or, as it is often called by the Chinese, the Ta-Kiang, or great river, holds a place second to none in the rivers of Asia. In length three other Asian rivers surpass it, the three so little known, the Yenesei, the We have traced the tendency to uni- Lena, and the Obi. Yet, in spite that it formity to its three sources, and we have ranks only fourth of the rivers of its confound in each some elements that contrib-tinent in size, the area drained by it is so ute more or less to produce that very evil against which Humboldt protested, and Mr. Mill thought so inimical to liberty in the fullest sense of the term. It is a humiliating thought that our civilization should have placed us in danger of an evil that is really subversive of civilization. For, as Emerson says, the "ceasing from fixed ideas" is a great part of civilization. But the tendency is for us more and more to become the slaves of "fixed ideas," and any statesman or thinker who will devise means to wipe away this reproach will earn the gratitude of his countrymen. There is pressing need that something should be done quickly, for, while we write, the evil which we have indicated is like a canker, eating at the roots of our national life. We have seen that in our politics it affects us as citizens, and that in our business and commercial pursuits it affects us as
large and of such vast population, while the traffic upon its waters, in a country where there are no railways, and where roads are but few, owing to the enormous number of canals and streams that have to be crossed, is so important, that it may be stated without exaggeration that regarding its utility to the natives of China, and the facility rendered by it to trade and travel, it can compare with any other river in the world.
The recent outbreak against Europeans has turned Western attention prominently towards the towns on the Yangtze; and very soon after the voyage up its course, which I am now going to describe, several of the towns which I visited were invested with a painful interest through the illtreatment inflicted upon European residents by the Chinese mobs; and among the victims of their atrocity were some
who were my fellow-passengers on the rin, to be addressed as "boy." I trembled ! cruise.
The clock in the great club at Shanghai told us it was time to embark; for although our steamer was not to leave the landing-stage on the bund before the early morning tide, yet we had made up our minds on the recommendation of friends to sleep on board, rather than have to leave our comfortable beds and embark at the unearthly hour of between two and three o'clock in the morning.
The club porter hailed two jinrikshas, for our luggage had been already sent on board. A dozen long and lanky betailed Chinamen galloped up to the door, rattling their jinrikshas behind them. Longer and lankier than ever appeared the sober Celestial under the white glare of the electric light. The bund was deserted, except for the little group round the club door, and here and there a native policeman or a European hurrying home from a dinner at a smart walk, for the night was cold. A jinriksha rattles down the street, otherwise Shanghai has gone to bed and to sleep. We settle ourselves in our handcarriages, the coolies raise the shafts, the porter tells them where to go to, and we are off, breaking the silence of the still autumn night with the rattle of the wheels. What a scurry down the bund, with its merchants' palaces and banks on one side, and its wide walk, shaded by trees and the river, on the other, and with the electric light throwing its unnatural glare over
The jetty! Our coolies stop with a jerk; we alight. There is no difficulty to be experienced in finding our steamer. From the landing-stage we step straight on board. On the gangway we are met by a most respectable creature, a wizened Chinaman, who might, judging from his appearance, be any age from fifty to a hun dred, with a small, round black cap on his head, and tortoise-shell spectacles, large enough, one would suppose, to see all the world through, on his nose. On the crown of his black cap he wears a red button. He is therefore ennobled. My companion, A., with that delightful gift of casual indifference to everything, which he possesses to perfection, not being read in the mysteries of the ratios of Chinese rank to colored buttons, accosted this lofty Celestial with an insurpassable sang froid:
Boy! where are our cabins?"
My one hope was that he did not understand English. He, the lofty manda
A.'s familiarity, not to say almost vulgar way of addressing the potentate, took my breath away. He had got us into the scrape, and no doubt it would fall to me to drag us both out again. Imagine my relief when I discovered that, probably following the old adage that the exception proves the rule, A. had made no mistake, and that this was the steward. being ennobled was later explained to me. He had passed the lowest of the literary examinations, had been presented with the rank represented by a red button, and made a contract with the steamship owner to run the catering department at so much per head for each passenger. Whether owing to his literary attainments, or to the fact that the stewards under him whom he had to provide by his contract were as near perfection as one could imagine servants to be, I know not; but certain it is that a most excellent steward he was, and his whole department on board was managed with extraordinary success.
The Yangtze steamers leave nothing to be desired, unless it is longer passages in them. They steam fast, almost too fast; the cabins are light and airy, and all on deck; the food is of the very best, and above one's bunk are hung innumerable arms, rifles, cutlasses, etc., in case of an attack by pirates, a precaution about as useful as the fastening of cork belts to the roof in the cabins of some of the large mail-steamers. These boats are for the most part three-deckers, and many are built with the old-fashioned beam-engine, which takes the form of a gigantic seesaw, protruding from the uppermost deck.
So quietly we left the jetty at Shanghai that neither A. nor myself woke, and when we rose the following morning the sun was shining brightly, and we had left the Hoang-pu River and the Woosung forts at its junction with the Yangtze far be hind, and were steaming at the rate of some fourteen knots an hour, in spite of the strong tides and current, through the muddiest water I think it has ever been my lot in life to look upon. So thick did the concoction appear that it seemed almost a possibility to get out and walk on its surface. Before the days of my initiation into the regions of Chinese rivers I had been wont to think the Thames dirty in London; but now I can lean over the bridges and almost imagine I can see the dead cats and empty tins at the bottom, in comparison to the Yangtze.
We were a hundred miles from the sea, and yet all the view to be obtained of the
river-banks was a far-away bank of mud that had got too thick to run. But a change came during the morning, the banks began to close in as we proceeded on our way, but offered no attractive scene, consisting for the most part of dense reedy swamps, beyond which one could now and again with difficulty descry cultivated land and villages.
they render unnecessary any deepening of the river, but also in the case of riots. which are so common, unfortunately, all along the river's course, they afford a more secure retreat than many of the houses ashore, as by raising the gangways the hulks can be entirely cut off from any direct communication with the land; while. being very high out of the water, any successful attempt, skilful as are the Chinese in any work of the kind, to gain an entrance from the boats would be almost impracticable. It is almost sad to recog
No places of importance were passed until late in the evening, although once or twice during the afternoon we stopped off some village to pick up a boat-load of passengers who had been waiting in mid-nize in these old hulks the remains of the stream for the steamer's arrival. The reedy shore had given place now and again to steep mud-banks fringed with green grass, and it was generally opposite a collection of huts upon the summit of the stiff clay that these stray passengers were picked up.
Toward evening, however, we arrived at Chin-Kiang, the first of the larger towns, and although it was already sunset by the time we had made fast, A. and I were not to be deterred from going ashore, and under the guidance of her Britannic Majesty's consul we visited the British Consulate, which in 1888 was destroyed in the riots that took place in this town, when also the houses of the European missionaries were burned. The riots were said to have been occasioned by an Indian policeman in the service of the British government having, in arresting a scoundrel, been obliged to use force, upon which the native population, as ready as gunpowder to burst into flame, rose en masse. Fortunately no lives were lost, but the European residents had to fly by night from the town and seek a place of hiding and safety in the open country. But of Chin-Kiang there is a far more tragic story to be told. When in 1842, after the quelling of the Tai-ping rebellion, the allied troops retiring from Nanking entered Chin-Kiang, they discovered the place to be in very truth a city of the dead, for, rather than fall into the hands of the soldiers of the "foreign devils," the men of the city had murdered their wives and children and then committed suicide - a most unnecessary precaution, for no attack was intended upon their town. It was a pity they did not live long enough to regret their hastiness.
As at most of the Yangtze ports, the steamers at Chin-Kiang are moored alongside a hulk, floating a little way out in the river, and connected by the mainland with large gangways. The hulks answer their purpose exceedingly well; for not only do
once famous clipper-ships, whose races to land the first cargoes of tea in England once caused so much excitement. Even now with the steamers much competition still exists, and many means are resorted to by ships' captains and agents to make the voyages successful. The captain of one rather old and slow steamer, finding that he would have to be a long time in China before he received a full cargo of tea, and would have probably to return largely in ballast, began, to every one's astonishment, to say that, owing to the repairs that had been done to his engines, he hoped to make a racing passage. Then, still more to the astonishment of the captains of the fast steamers and the world at large, he commenced to back himself to make the fastest passage home. In such very considerable sums of money did he wager that people began to think there was something in it, and the merchants sent their tea almost entirely to his ship, arguing that, as the captain stood to lose £500, the repairs to his steamer's engines had probably put him in a position to bet almost on a certainty. Of course the steamer, whose greatest speed was eight knots an hour, arrived in England weeks after the others, and the captain lost his £500; but instead of having to lie in China waiting his chance of cargo coming in from the interior- a probable delay of weeks — he had cleared, in a few days, after his bets became known to the public, with a full ship, thus recouping to his owners, who of course paid his betting losses, a considerable number of thousands of pounds profit.
Chin-Kiang owes its importance more to the reason that it is the principal port of the province of Kiang-su than to any other fact, and the shipments of rice and tea made yearly are very considerable. The town much resembles any other Chinese city, being full of gilt sign-boards, pigs, and dirt, with a prevalence of a variety of unpleasant smells in every street.
The European quarter is, as is the case in almost all Chinese cities, separate from the native city, and is pleasantly situated on the banks of the river, with a shady bund stretching its whole length, many of the houses possessing pretty gardens. Near Chin-Kiang is the one terminus of the Great Canal, by which the Yangtze is connected with the Ho-hang-ho, one terminus of the second largest river of China. During the night we passed Nanking, but on our way down a few weeks later were able to see a little more of this historical old city, in associations second to none in China. The town itself is situated a little way back from the river, but a port has grown up on the very banks of the Yangtze, enclosed itself within the long walls of the capital further inland.
habitants, and those there are for the most part missionaries, who possess the largest house and garden in the place, and one of the smallest churches, probably, in the world. Any comparison between the house of God and the residential buildings is very largely in favor of the latter. Near Wu-hu the Yangtze formerly turned in a more southerly direction, and it is only in geologically recent times that it has followed its present course. A huge river winding through level plains is always liable to eccentric deviations, and one city formerly on the Yangtze, between Hankow and I-chang, and doing a most flourishing river trade, suddenly found itself with nothing before it but a muddy empty channel. The superstitious inhabitants, believing that offence had been given to the waters, spent a fortune in flags and crackers of propitiation, and held a great festival to the honor of all the local deities, but in vain, for the Yangtze, having found a shorter passage to the sea, utterly refused to approach within fourteen miles of the town in question.
The pleasure of travelling on the great water-way of China does not altogether centre in the towns on its banks. The river teems with life, both animal and celestial, the former principally wild-fowl, the latter of the human kind, though in this case the term Celestial is applied in its more generally understood sense in regard to China than with any attempt at using it literally. It is not, I believe, generally known that the name Celestial is not applied by the Chinese to themselves.
For a long time Nanking was the largest city in the world, when the seat of the emperors of the Ming dynasty, the last before the accession of the present Manchu reigning house. At the fall of the Chinese emperors and the succession of the Tartar rule, Nanking lost much of its importance, though still a flourishing centre, until the leader of the Tai-ping rebellion, in the flush of success, made it his capital, with the intention of once more raising it to the position of the most important city in China. At his overthrow the city fell into the hands of the government, and is now the residence of the viceroy of Kiangnan, and is celebrated chiefly for its manufacture of satins, which has taken the place to a large extent of its famous pottery-works, though the Yangtze can still boast of the largest pottery manufacturing cities of China, -one Kiu-kiang, situated on the river itself, the other two, Nam-gether in an uncouth manner, sometimes chang and King-ho-chew, lying some little way back, the former being in direct communication with the river by means of the Poyang lake, to the east of which it is situated. The most beautiful monument of China once stood within Nanking namely, the celebrated porcelain pagoda, destroyed at the time of the Tai-ping revolt; but still it can make some boast of antiquities, curious if not beautiful, in the tombs of the Ming emperors, standing without the city walls, and carved into the strange forms of elephants, camels, tortoises bearing columns on their backs, and many other varieties of shape.
In the morning we tied up alongside the hulk at Wu-hu, where there is not very much to see, though the place is important, owing to the exceedingly large amount of tea and rice shipped from there. There are but few European in
Strange junks float down or sail up the river, sometimes mere planks nailed to
built in the regular river-junk fashion, and well built too, of varnished wood, with raised deck-houses high above the stern, and sails of matting; and not seldom some bepainted and bespangled mandarin boat is passed, covered with gold dragons in contortions, and resembling more the advertisement van of some second-rate circus than anything else. Yet they are most picturesque; the grotesque animals, whose protruding necks form the bow, and whose open jaws are filled with scarlet teeth, are a marvel; but they are not alone in their glory, for the whole ship is a mass of tangled reptiles and beautiful but mythical birds and beasts. The cabin, with its gay awning and brilliantly painted walls, stands on the deck like a Paris bonbonnière, while from above fly a multitude of flags, long, narrow pennants bearing the mandarin owner's name and titles, flags with curly
consigned to the river mud by being dropped overboard. Wu-hu is left behind, and once more the steamer is making her way up-stream. The river has narrowed considerably, and at this part, to a great deal higher up, is about a mile in breadth, though by being often broken up into numerous channels and islands one cannot always realize the fact.
dragons - flags, in fact, of every color and every design. Every day we were passing these boats, and each was a picture. The decks from which the sailors row are very low to the water, and on one occasion the wash of our passing steamer caused such a strain upon the heavy oars that two of a crew were washed overboard. We saw them picked up again, and then proceeded on our way, the gaudy and infuri ated mandarin cursing us volubly from the roof of his cabin. All Chinese boats have one delightful peculiarity in common-an eye painted on the bows; for, argues the simple-minded Celestial, "No got eye, no makee see; no makee see, no can go." A treatise on ships by a Chinaman would be very good reading. I am told that they firmly believe that the size of a ship is in ratio to the number of her masts, and that the smallest of our three-masted gun-in the smooth surface of the river, lighted boats is considered to be larger than our biggest one-masted ironclads. "Him very big ship," says Ah Sin; "three piecee bamboo stick have got."
The villages passed offer but little variety or beauty. Usually they are composed of rude hovels of timber, plastered over with mud, and at the time of our visit were nearly all half flooded, owing to the summer rise in the river having been so extreme. Altogether a Chinese village on the plains of the lower Yangtze is about as melancholy a picture of desolation as one could imagine. Even the pigs look depressed. But happily now and again there is a change, and hills, in some cases high hills, run parallel with the river a few miles inland, or a pagoda rears its head, and breaks the monotony of the dull flats. The island of Pantski is a charming spot for instance, with its curious "josshouses" or temples, and its half-ruined pagoda. "Joss," by the by, so far from being, as I amongst others always imag. ined, a Chinese word, is merely the mispronunciation of the Spanish dios, God. The discovery of this fell heavily upon me. It reduced my knowledge of Chinese from two words to one; but I have learned several since, but will not write them here, as I do not know what they mean. A. and the writer both started with the determination of studying Chinese, and the writer let A. buy a grammar; but on discovering that the single letter i had one hundred and forty-five ways of being pronounced, and that each pronunciation had an entirely different meaning, we said that there was no poetry about the Chinese language, that it was not worth learning, and A.'s grammar was secretly
Very early in the morning following our departure from Wu-hu, we arrived at Ngan-king, and as the moon was very bright, one could see the place tolerably well, and it looked more picturesque under the refining influences of night than it would otherwise have done. This city is the capital of Ngan-hwei, and is situated on the north bank of the river. It stretches far along the water's edge, and ends on the east with a fine pagoda. This reflected
by a brilliant moon and a myriad stars, formed a lovely picture. This, indeed, was China of one's childhood. It wanted but little imagination to believe that all was built of porcelain, like the palace of the emperor in Hans Christian Andersen's tale of the "Nightingale and the Emperor of China." How calm and still everything was! Just as we saw the pagoda on the river-bank against the vault of heaven, so it was reflected on the water, till a boat passing by shattered its mirrored form into a hundred thousand fragments, as if it really had been porcelain. A gentle breeze blew from the shore, bearing us the homely odors of China, opium, man, and pig-especially pig. But in spite of the beauties of Ngan-king by night, it is specially and indelibly fixed in the writer's mind by the fact that the morning after he had become the proud and sole possessor of a cold, which he afterwards, in a fit of conscientious generosity, handed over to A. for a week or two.
Above Ngan-king is a charming spot, a solitary rock standing in the centre of the stream, and known by the poetic name of "The Little Orphan." The tiny island, a sugar-loaf in form, is crowned by a low pagoda, while clinging to its side is a Buddhist monastery, the whole forming a lovely picture. Thousands of birds build their nests every spring on its steep preci pices, for the most part cormorants, which a violent shriek from our steam whistle sent flying in every direction. A little higher up on the south side is the entrance to the great Poyang lake, through which in the far away can be seen another solitary rock, larger than that already passed, and known as "The Great Orphan." On