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grave were hustled in alive, in order to add to the sport or solemnity of the scene. Upon the death of a king's brother, four thousand victims were thus sacrificed. These ceremonies are often repeated, and hundreds slaughtered at every rehearsal. Upon the death of a King of Ashantee, a general massacre takes place, in which there can be no computation of the victims.
At their “Yam Customs," Mr. Bowditch witnessed spectacles of the most appalling kind. Every caboceer or noble, sacrificed a slave as he entered at the gate. Heads and skulls formed the ornaments of their processions. Hundreds were slain ; and the streaming and steaming blood of the victims was mingled in a vast brass pan, with various vegetables and animal matter, fresh as well as putrid, to compose a powerful Fetiche. At these Customs the same scenes of butchery and slaughter occur. The king's executioners traverse the city, killing all they meet. The next day desolation reigns over the land. The king during the bloody saturnalia looked on eagerly, and danced in his chair with delight!
The King of Dahomey paves the approaches to bis residence, and ornaments the battlements of his palace, with the skulls of his victims; and the great Fetiche Tree, at Badagry, has its wide-spread limbs laden with human carcases and limbs. There the want of chastity is no disgrace, and the priests are employed as pimps. Murder, adultery and thievery, says Bosman, are here no sins.
The case of Quaque, given by our author, shows how vain is the hope of effecting a national regeneration by the education of Africans to the Christian ministry. In fifty years residence at Cape Coast Castle, he gained over not one of his countrymen --and dying, showed his confidence still reposed in his Fetiche and not in Christian rites. Well might Mr. Beecham remark, that “the case of this individual furnishes matter for grave consideration on the part of those who are anxious to promote the enlightenment and elevation of Africa."-(p. 258.) The English chaplains that succeeded Quaque soon died. So, the Danish Missionaries have all died. The English are all the time dying, or going home for their
health. Mr. Dunwell, the Wesleyan Missionary, died. Mr. and Mrs. Wrigley soon died. Mr. and Mrs. Harrop soon died. Mr. and Mrs. Freeman succeeded-the latter soon sickened and died, and Mr. Freeman was compelled to visit England for his health. He recovered and returned to the scenes of his labours, and to him we are indebted for much of the information contained in Mr. Beecham's book.
A Fetiche man, named Akwah, is mentioned, who would make a most distinguished table-mover and spirit-rapper. He could pound up beads into powder and instantly restore them. He could thrust his finger through a stone; and he could make people believe bim, for he was dexterous in substituting one thing for another. He could call apes from the bushes and make them talk. This he could do in the night, but not in the day. Daylight did not suit his Fetiche. It preferred darkness. He took people into the bush and deceived them. Boys were sent out in the dark for the purpose of detection, and deposited bottles of rum. The monkeys smelt the rum and drank of it so freely that they were soon taken, and proved to be other boys disguised and instructed for the cheat. "Father, father, it is not an ape; 1 have caught a boy.”' “ Hold fast," and before they could be brought to the light, old Akwah had taken to his heels and was never more seen at Cape Coast Castle. This broke the spell. So, no doubt, inight some of our spells be broken. But Judge O'Neall would not consent to give “ a little rum,” even to detect an imposter, and gentlemen, like Coffee, will still continue to believe. Rum is, no doubt, a potent finder out of other spirits.
One decided improvement and step towards advancement, Beecham thinks, is evident at Domonasi, where some of the Africans actually begin to wear European clothes, and beg for a fresh supply! Wonderful indeed! as if every savage on earth would not do the same? Has Mr. Beecham ever read Catlin's Indians of North America? We remember reading, sometime since, the travels of some young British officer, who visited Hayti in the course of a voyage, and was sent into the country from Port au Prince, to visit at his country residence some black general to whom he had
letters. Passing an extensive prairie with mountains on the back ground, he saw some object approaching, which, for bis life, he could not comprehend. In a short time he came up with the very general of whom he was in search, and to his astonishment found the black gentleman upon a mule, without an article of clothes upon him, but a straw hat and a pair of spurs. Now, this general, according to Mr. Beecham, though one of the distingúés, or great men of Hayti, must have been much less civilized than another gentleman whom he met, who had on nothing but a cast-off short-tail European cavalry jacket, and was extremely elegant in his bows. Thinking of the We'el done cutty sark" of Burns, we conceive, at a moment, bow appropriate would be the presence of such civilized gentry, at a witch's festival or a devil's feast, such as they had in New England, when Cotton Mather was an oracle, and such as they may still have on the weird summits of the Brocken.
A great mass of the negro territory is still an immense and impenetrable forest. The soil in many parts is extremely fertile, as is proved by the immense population it supports, for nowhere are these natural advantages less improved by
A hoe, a little spade, with which he scratches the ground, is the highest degree of his agricultural advancement in Africa. There is no such thing as property in land. Mr. Henry Carey's theory of rent cannot prevail there. Manufacturing industry ranks still lower, though the producer and consumer lie down together--the wife being the producer and the husband the consumer; the happiest of industrial conditions. Notwithstanding, however, no trea" sury there can be filled but by the slave trade, and it is not thereby abolished, as Mr. Carey would suppose. Though a magnificent country for cotton, we need not fear their rivalry, as they have been brought here that the advantage might be mutually enjoyed of having the producer and consumer placed side by side. But the king wishing to replenish his treasury, instead of resorting to the "Loom, the Anvil and the Plough,” fixes upon some village in his own or neighbour's territory, surrounds it in the night and sets fire to it. Attempting to escape, the wretched inhabitants are seized
and hurried off. The trial by ordeal, or “ swearing liquor," " already spoken of, prevails to a peculiar extent. It is impossible to name any region tolerably peopled, so illiterate as the African. They have neither alphabet, hieroglyphic, picture or symbol. Their villages are mere dog-kennels. Their family brawls, and the wranglings incident to their thousand wives, may well be conceived, and are only subdued and kept down after the failure of scolding and beating, by the terrors of Mumbo-Jumbo, the bugbear of the African ladies, and detector of adultery. Summoned before Mumbo-Jumbo, the unhappy one dares not disobey. Appearing before him, she is stripped naked in the presence of the bulk of her fellow-citizens, and undergoes a severe whipping, inflicted by the rod of Mumbo-Jumbo! And Mumbo-Jumbo is never known to grant a divorce.
In Dahomey, the greatest nobles cannot approach their king without throwing themselves flat on the ground, and laying their heads in the du-t. The belief is instilled into them that their lives belong entirely to their sovereign. Human skulls and putrifying carcases ornament their temples and their dwellings. Even the king's sleeping apartment is paved with human skulls. The Jaggas, represented for their extreme barbarity and ferocity two hundred years ago, retain still the same characteristics without any change. The same may be said of all those nations which inhabit that vast country called the Coast, from Senegal to the Cape of Good Hope. But, we must cease the disgusting picture of a people, whose savage and shocking barbarities, and loathsome habits, and horrid crimes, are supposed to establish a condition so preferable to that of slavery to the white man, that the fleets of civilized Europe and America, are employed to maintain and perfect them in it. D. J. M.
ART. IV.-NAPOLEON BONAPARTE AND SIR HUDSON LOWE. History of the Captivity of Napoleon at St. Helena, from
the Letters and Journal of the late Sir Hudson Lowe, and Official Documents not before made public. By WILLIAM FORSYTH, M.A., author of Hortensius, &c. 3 vols. Murray.
The uncertainty of history has become a proverb. Richard Ill., Shakspeare's bloody hunchback, has been demonstrated to be an Apollo Tonans; in the words of Blake, the Seer, “harsh but handsome, terrible to look upon,” and the fascination which won so suddenly the repugnant Lady Ann, abundantly accounted for. Robespierre, the grim embodiment of the “ Reign of Terror," stands before us in the picturesque pages of Carlyle, as "the sea-green incorruptible," a steady but gentle denouncer of tyrants and tyranny ; to say the worst of him, “the mildest mannered man,” like Byron's Lambro, " that ever scuttled ship or cut a throat." While Whately, in his “ Historic Doubts,” has thrown the shadow of question over the very existence of Napoleon Bonaparte, the Rev. Mr. Abbott, of Harper's Magazine, has washed away every stain upon the character of that personage, supposing him to have existed ; and has proved him a meek disciple, a true lover of the people and of the people's rights; utterly averse to war, and indifferent to conquest; careful of human life, absolutely unselfish, and entirely innocent of all ambitious aspirations. It must not surprise us to meet with a formal defence of Nero, upon whose tomb, indeed, as Suetonius tells us, some unseen hand strewed flowers," or a laboured eulogy upon Caligula. Doubtless, these personages had enemies who hated them ; their friends were overwhelmed with them, and have never obtained a hearing. We may yet be called on to regard them as martyrs.
Public opinion, if it ever settled down upon any topic, ancient or modern, may be said to have been, for nearly half a century, unanimously of accord as to the imprisonment of Napoleon at St. Helena. His escape from Elba