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philosophic, mess-tables to which he was welcomed. The traveller may be pardoned for being biassed by the opinions of society so hospitable, manly, and intelligent as that of the Anglo-Indians. In previous numbers of the Examiner we have spoken of the English in India with admiration. This admiration was appropriate when Englishmen, taken by surprise in the midst of their lordly and luxurious living, the claret circulating and the punkah swinging, were the next moment at their posts to prove, by achievement and endurance, that England could be as grand and heroic under Havelock and the Lawrences, as ever before under Wellington and Marlborough, the Henrys and the Edwards. But English heroes, as well as all other heroes, have their faults, which must be mentioned, since justice to Asiatics requires it. It now turns out that the barbarities of the Hindus, proclaimed so loudly throughout the civilized world, were greatly exaggerated, and that the subsequent barbarities of the English were greater and less excusable. Furthermore, it now appears that English insolence was one of the chief causes of the revolt. Evidence of these statements has been furnished abundantly by the English press and Parliament. Not as a digression, but in order that we may remove some of that prejudice through which the Hindu and Mohammedan civilizations are commonly viewed, we shall give a few quotations, to show that the enlightened world was too hasty in concluding that cruelty and barbarism had died out of Christian civilization, and lived only in heathen. We are not without hope that the tide is beginning to turn, and that, in a generation or two more, Europeans and Americans will look upon Asiatics with candor, and Christians judge of Pagans and Mohammedans with charity. Yet perhaps we are too hopeful; it has been truly remarked, that “as our civilization and refinement increase, we · look with more abhorrence upon any departure from our confirmed habits and prejudices.” The London Quarterly Review, in an able article on British India, (July, 1858,) says:
“Young men [Indians] who have received an education, and have passed an examination scarcely inferior in the variety and difficulty of its subjects to those of our English Universities, are treated with haughty contempt, or, at best, with condescending civility, by a youth
fresh from an English school, who has just managed, by cramming or interest, to get an Indian appointment, and who is taught, the moment he puts his foot on Indian ground, to look upon the niggers' as of a race so inferior in every respect to himself, that contact with them amounts almost to contamination. And yet these "niggers' are men of very subtle intellect, of great reasoning powers, and of extraordinary aptitude for acquiring knowledge. No race, perhaps, shows a higher intellectual development than the Brahmins of Western India, or the higher castes of Bengal. Their thirst after knowledge — whether for its own sake or for the object of obtaining employment — is unbounded. ..... Our English mode of life, our dress, our food, and our habits are neither suited to the climate nor the people. ..... There is no sympathy between us; we have no common interests, affections, or pleasures; we treat them with an overbearing insolence, a haughty contempt, or an insulting indifference. They are too generally addressed in terms of the grossest abuse. ..... The oft-repeated AngloSaxon assertion, that natives are unfit, by the absence of the necessary intellectual and moral qualities, to take a share in the government of the country, is rendered absurd, as much by the instances of the great men who ruled India under the ancient native dynasties as by those of Dinker Rao, Salar Jung, and other living statesmen, who have shown no less integrity in administration than wisdom in legislation.” — pp. 130, 129, 132.
These quotations we make not to cast reproach upon the English, — very far otherwise. Americans in the same circumstances would be no better, and in somewhat similar circumstances, where slavery prevails, often dishonor our common human nature by worse manifestations. Bad systems — despotism and slavery — will make even high-minded men brutal.
That our proofs may not be confined to one period or to one phase of things, we go back for a moment in our quotations to the evidence given before Parliament in 1813, when Sir Thomas Munro, that great statesman and good man, who drew to himself the affection and reverence of the multitudes of Asiatics and Europeans who knew him, bears the following strong testimony to the character and civilization of the Hindus:
“If a good system of agriculture, unrivalled manufacturing skill, a capacity to produce whatever can contribute to either convenience or luxury, schools established in every village for teaching reading, writing, and arithmetic, the general practice of hospitality and charity amongst each other, and, above all, a treatment of the female sex full of confidence, respect, and delicacy, are among the signs which denote a civilized people, — then the Hindus are not inferior to the nations of Europe; and, if civilization is to become an article of trade between the two countries, I am convinced that this country will gain by the import cargo.” — Mill and Wilson's India, edition of 1858, p. 371.
Warren Hastings, on the same occasion, said:
“Great pains have been taken to inoculate into the public mind an opinion, that the native Indians are in a state of complete moral turpitude. I affirm by the oath that I have taken, that this description of them is wholly unfounded. ..... They are gentle, benevolent, more susceptible of gratitude for kindness shown them than prompted to vengeance for wrongs inflicted, and as exempt from the worst propensities of human passion as any people upon the face of the earth; they are superstitious, it is true, but they do not think ill of us for not thinking as they do. Gross as the modes of their worship are, the precepts of their religion are wonderfully fitted to promote the best ends of society, its peace and good order. ..... They possess in a very high degree the principles of gratitude, affection, honor, and justice.” — Ibid., p. 372.
The North British Review, which on points of religious orthodoxy will be received as good authority, says: “ The Hindus can no longer be regarded as mere ignorant and fanatical worshippers of stocks and stones. In this country Christian writers have not hitherto done justice to heathenism.” Sir Charles Napier said of the Indian army: “If these sepoys were not the best men in the world, they would give their commander much trouble.” He could never think of them but with respect and admiration." He calls “the manners of both armies” — the Queen's and the Company's — “ toward natives of all ranks, a vulgar bahaudering.” Such deeds were done as made him wonder that England held India a year. Lutfullah, a Mohammedan gentleman of India who travelled in Europe, remarked, with Asiatic keenness, that “the more you proceed on toward England, the more you find the English people endowed with politeness and courtesy."*
We come now to quotations fitted to make the.ears of Anglo
Saxon Christians tingle. Captain Hervey, in 1850, speaks of “ the harsh measures of all classes of Europeans towards natives. The very brutes are not so treated. To maltreat a native is considered a meritorious act.” He quotes the remarks of respectable natives in regard to our religion: “You call yourselves Christians, you profess temperance, soberness, and chastity; you preach against idolatry. Where is your temperance ? you are always drinking! Where is your chastity ? Whom do you worship ? Not God surely. Your belly is your God; vanity and self-indulgence your worship; and your religion is nothing.” The Calcutta Conference of Missionaries, in 1855, say: “ The ryots generally believe that the Christian religion consists in having no caste, that is, no selfrespect, in eating and drinking freely, and in trampling upon the social, political, and religious rights of the niggers.'”*
After the taking of Delhi, an officer wrote to the Bombay Times :
“Many will be glad to learn that women and children are suffered to go unmolested. This was a stretch of mercy I should not have been prepared to make, had I a voice in the matter. ..... All the city people found within the walls when our troops entered were bayoneted on the spot, and the number was considerable, as you may suppose, when I tell you that in some houses forty or fifty persons were hiding.
These were not mutineers, but residents of the city, who trusted to our well-known mild rule for pardon. I am glad to say they were disappointed.”
And this in the nineteenth century of Christ, among the most Christian of the Christian nations! Let us not speak of Asiatic cruelty, of heathen bloodthirstiness. Mr. Ludlow himself says:
“A relation of mine wrote to me from India only the other day, that he had known a European officer who kept an orderly for the sole purpose of thrashing his native servants; that another was recently tried for beating his orderly because he did not thrash his servants hard enough. Another relative of mine, an officer in a Bombay regiment, wrote lately in terms of just disgust at the conduct of the young officers of his corps towards their native servants, — maltreating them, leaving their wages unpaid for a twelvemonth, - and yet some of these men were so faithful, that they would pawn their own clothes to procure grain for their master's horses.”
* For this last quotation, and for several others, we are indebted to the valuable Lectures of J. H. Ludlow, Vol. II. pp. 355 - 365.
Another witness declares :
“ If a man who left India thirty years ago were now to revisit it, he would scarcely credit the change he would universally witness in the treatment of the natives, high and low. The English were not then absolute masters everywhere. Now they are.”
Alas! it is a fearful thing for any of us to be intrusted with unlimited power. Besides, the Anglo-Saxon race, wherever found, manifest a peculiar scorn of the dark races and their peculiarities. Whatever advantages of race or culture or religion we may possess, freedom from prejudice is not among them. We persist in holding that all good things are of one kind and fashion, and that our own. We cannot easily admit that there may be more than one good color for the skin, more than one good form of government, more than one style of beauty, more than one good religion, more than one commendable routine of manners and customs. Even in food we have our prejudices. This was ludicrously shown in the case of an English lady, long absent from England, who, on returning, wept to find she had lost the taste for roast-beef. Lesson upon lesson we must have before we can so far rid ourselves of prejudice as to do justice to Asiatics. And when we partially succeed in curing ourselves of this prejudice, we are suspected of degeneracy. Strange to say, the prejudice of race and religion seems strongest among those who hold it as a sacred dogma, that all races originated in Adam, and that all the sound morality and theology found among the Chinese, Hindus, and Persians came, in some way, from our Bible. It should seem to be a legitimate inference from such a creed, that all men are brethren, and that all religions are related, and therefore to be treated tenderly, — at least fairly.
The basis of Hindu civilization is broader than that of the Chinese. Besides agriculture, manufactures, and commerce, which belong to the two in common, to an extent not equalled in Europe till the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the Hindu civilization has been eminently aided by