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1. more gained its independence, was visited by CÆSAR FREDERICK,
a merchant of Venice, who spent eighteen years in travelling in the East. He describes the houses as made of canes, and covered with leaves or straw; but the king's palace (he says) resembled a walled castle, gilded all over, and rising into lofty pinnacles. His majesty had four white elephants kept in the greatest state, having
their meat served in gold and silver dishes, and their feet washed . in silver basins; he had, beside, four thousand war elephants, with
wooden castles on their backs, twenty-six crowned kings as vassals, and an army of a million and a half! This traveller gives us also a long description of the pagodas, and the gigantic images dedicated to the worship of Boudh.
In 1583 GASPARO Balbi, another Venetian, visited Pegu. On vis delivering a present to the king, his Majesty could not do less than
inquire after the health of his brother of Venice; but on being told that there was no king, the state being a republic, he burst into such an immoderate fit of laughter as to be unable for some time to utter a word. This light-hearted monarch, suspecting his nobles of intriguing with the King of Ava, collected them together with their wives and children, to the number of four thousand; and having ordered the whole to be placed on a spacious scaffold, set it
on fire: our author, who witnessed this horrid scene, ventures to observe, how grievous a thing it was that little children, without any fault, should suffer such a martyrdom !'
Having thus cursorily run over a few of the most remarkable of the early travels in the east, down to the commencement of the se
century, we are only tempted to transgress that limit from the circumstance of no modern having traversed a part of Asia, to which our attention has more than once been ansiously directed We speak of the countries bordering on the immense chain of the Himalaya Mountains. It has been supposed, that these mountains were crossed for the first time by any European a few years ago, when Mr. Moorcroft penetrated into the plains of Tartary through the Nitee pass. This, however, would appear not to be the case.
In 1621, ANTONIO ANDRADA, a Jesuit missionary resident at the court of the Mogul, left Agra privately, with some others, with the view of proceeding to Thibet. He arrived at Serinagur, where he was detained for some time under the suspicion of being a spy, but was at length suffered to depart. The road up the mountains is described as extremely difficult and dangerous; but the bands of pilgrims journeying to the holy shrines near the fountain-head of the Ganges, enlivened the dreary route. The good fathers, however, were greatly annoyed with the cries of the worshippers of Badrinath and of the jogues (yogis), whom they considered as ministers of the devil; one, in particular, is described with hair and
nails so overgrown, and with a face so hideous, that they grievously suspected him to be Satan himself in propria persona. Andrada mentions the lofty pines, pear-trees, rose-bushes, and other European plants, on the mountains; the rope bridges, and the vaults of snow from which the river issued near Badrinath, where the boys were observed to suck it like sugar.
Here they were told that the passage over the mountains could only be effected two months in the
year. Andrada however was impatient, and set out on the journey. The party had not proceeded far when the guide was overtaken by three mountaineers
, sent after them by the King of Serinagur, who informed him, that his wife and children had been thrown into prison, and that nothing but his immediate return could save their lives. The departure of the guide, however, did not damp the ardour of Andrada, who, after some inquiry as to the route, determined to proceed.
The sufferings endured during this journey are described as almost beyond human endurance. The snow took them up usually to the knees, sometimes to the breasts and shoulders, and they were often obliged to throw themselves along as if swimming, that they might sink less deep. This toil, and the laborious leaps which it was needful to make, covered them with cold sweats. At night, having only snow 10 sleep upon, they laid one cloak below and two above; but the spor fell so thick, that though touching, they could not see each other, and they were obliged to be always shaking their coverlets, that they might not be buried beneath it. The wind, at the same time, blew superla
. tively cold. They had a mortal loathing at food, such as they had never experienced in any disease, and wbich made eating be felt as a thing impossible ; yet it was above all things necessary that they should eat something, otherwise the cold could never be resisted. At length all feeling was lost in the hands and feet, so that when an accident struck off a piece of Andrada's finger, he knew it by the bleeding only
, not by any sense of pain : and afterwards, hot cuals were applied to the feet without being felt. Andrada being the only one who re: tained any portion of vigour, he was obliged to dress and undress bis companions, to cover and uncover them, and even put the meat into their mouths.
* At length, through all these sufferings and privations, they reached the summit of the Himmaleh, and saw beneath their feet a great lake (probably the Mansarowar), which they supposed, though by mistake, to be the common source of the Ganges, and of another great stream that flowed through Thibet. The mountains were now passed, and the immense plain of Thibet lay stretched before them. But what was their horror, when, instead of any patent or accessible track, they saw, far as the eye could reach, only one unbroken sheet of snow. They had no longer any signal by which their course could be guided. Wherever they turned their eyes, they saw no path, no land-mark, nothing but an unvaried and boundless white. At this spectacle, their hearts died en
tirely within them. Andrada saw at last that it was vain to attempt dragging through his companions, but proposed that they should return, leaving him to search a way for himself. “At this proposal, he says, all the three began to cry like children. They appealed to himself whether it was possible for them to travel a day without his aid. He agreed therefore to return, and they made their way back through a train of similar hardships, somewhat mitigated, however, by the approach of a more genial season. Before reaching the village, they met persons who informed them that the King of Sirinagur had sent permission for them to proceed. Some rest, however, was necessary after such horrible fatigues; and they made use of this interval to send a messenger to the King of Thibet, announcing their intended visit. The king, hearing they were a sort of persons quite different from any he had yet seen, gave notice that they would be welcome. They made their journey in the company of the caravan.'—vol. i. pp. 431-433.
M. Provost, in the French collection of voyages, (servilely following the compiler of the work known under the name of Astley's Voyages, who as servilely follows Bentinck,) attempts to throw discredit on the travels of Andrada, because he mentions the lake on the other side of the Himalaya, as the common source of the Ganges, and the other great stream flowing through Thibet
whereas, it is well known,' says the sagacious critic, that the Indus and all the other rivers of India (except the Ganges) have their sources in India itself. The extract which we have given places the authenticity of the narrative beyond the possibility of doubt.*
A bolder undertaking than even that of Andrada was the journey of Grubber and Dorville, two Jesuit missionaries, who, leaving Pekin in the summer of 1661, proceeded, by Tangut, Lassa and Nepal, to the court of the Great Mogul. Their route is not easily traced; but, after leaving Lassa, they came to the foot of the mountain Langur, which is described as the loftiest in the world, and the air on its summit so subtle as to be almost unfit to breathe: the road was tremendous, and impassable either by wheel carriages or cattle. On descending the other side, a journey of five days brought them to the first town of Nepal, and five days more to Catmandu, the capital. Thus, there can be no question of these daring adventurers having crossed that part of the Himaleh behind
The last we shall mention are HippoLITO, Desideri, and MANUEL FREYE, who left Delhi in 1714, on a mission to Thibet. After scrambling up rugged mountains and crossing rapid torrents, over which they were frequently dragged by being made
The work is now become rare. Its title is • Novo Descobrimento de grao Cattayo en dos Reinos de Tibet.' Printed in Lisbon in 1626.
fast to a cow's tail, they reached Cashmere, where Desideri fell sick: on his recovery they again set forward, in the month of May, and crossed the lofty mountain of Kantel, covered with snow: of this passage, the dangers of which, Desideri says, he never could contemplate without horror, such a dreadful account is given as fully to justify his feelings.
Thus we have instances of this formidable barrier being crossed at three several points, and, we have little doubt, it may be crossed in many more. Indeed we have before us an account of a most interesting journey by Lieutenant Gerard, of the Bengal Infantry, who has recently penetrated through the Busscher country into Thibet by a pass named Brooang, not very distant from the ravine of the Sutlej, the crest of which he found by his barometer to be more than fifteen thousand feet above the level of the sea : and in corroboration of the anomaly which we have had frequent occasion to notice as taking place in these elevated regions, we may mention that he found the blue-bell (campanula) growing, in full flower, at this extraordinary elevation, in lat. 31° 23'. On reaching the first Tartar villages on these plains, the simple inhabitants viewed the stranger with the utmost astonishment, having never before seen an European. At a small town, called Shipké, the party was waited on by some Chinese officers, who brought them presents of provisions ; but at the same time the principal officer showed them a roll of paper, with Chinese characters, as his instructious to suffer no strangers to enter the country; and plainly intimated that, if they persisted, the loss of his head would be the consequence. Mr. Moorcroft too is engaged in a second attempt to cross the Himaleh ; he had arrived at Badrinath, and prevailed on the officiating Brahmins to allow him to send down to Calcutta four large sheets of copper, covered with small deep-cut characters, of a language which he was wholly unacquainted with, but which he was willing to suppose might contain a history of the temples, and, perhaps, some account of the worship of Budh : the Brahmins were wholly ignorant of their meaning.
We shall not detain our readers longer with the progressive knowledge of the Asiatic continent and islands. Suffice it to say, that from the moment it was discovered that the Eastern world was approachable by sea from the Atlantic, and that our adventurous countrymen had passed through Russia to Persia, and from clience to India, the great geographical outline of Asia began to assume a correct shape, which has, since the commencement of the seventeenth century, been progressively and uninterruptedly tilling up. To the Jesuit missionaries, who established themselves in China, the highest praise is due for the admirable chart of this vast empire, constructed by them after a laborious survey of ten years;
the neighbouring empire of India, however, the correct geography is wholly due to our countrymen.
What yet remains to be obtained, is a knowledge of the line of country extending from the extreme point of the Malayan peninsula, El near the equator, directly north to the 40th parallel of latitude,
in the country of the Eleuth Tartars. It comprehends the countries of Arracan, Ava, Pegu, Siam, Tsiompa, Cambodia, all intersected by immense rivers, that, rising in the mountains of Great
Thibet, and extending to the north-west, along the frontier of a China, pour their fertilizing streams through every part of that 1: iminense empire. Among the numerous islands of the Eastern
Archipelago, Borneo, (next to New Holland in size,) Celebes, and : Papua may be considered as utterly unknown; and we see little prospect at present of any useful researches being extended into the interior of these fertile and, we believe, populous regions.
Art. IV. A Treatise on Adulterations of Food and Culinary
Poisons, exhibiting the fraudulent Sophistications of Bread, Beer, M'ine, Spirituous Liquors, Tea, Coffee, Creum, Confectionary, Vinegar, Mustard, Pepper, Cheese, Olive Oil, Pickles, and other Articles employed in Domestic Economy, and Methods of detecting them. By Frederick Accum, &c. &c. &c. pp. 371. 12mo. London. 1820. I
HOLD,' says Sir Thomas Brown, that there is a Phyto
gnomy, or Physiognomy, not onely of men, but of plants and vegetables, and, in every one of them, some outward figures which hang as signes or bushes of their inward forms. Through the whole course of our critical labours, we have never yet had occasion to review the outside of a book; sometimes, indeed, we are facetiously told that we do not read the inside; but the exterior of the present volume forces itself upon our attention : it carries death and destruction on the blue cover, and within
arsnike, Vitriol, Salttartre, Argale, Alkaly, and a thousand other hideous and unutterable things.
If our author is not acquainted with the works of a certain noted chemist Selden, which (no offence to his reading) we rather suspect to be the case, his natural wit has taught him that 'to preach long, loud and damnation,' is the way to attract notice. The stag who canuot be enticed into the snare with the ordinary baits, is frightened into it by loud shouts and a formidable string of feathers, and those who would not, perhaps, be induced to purchase Mr. Accum's book by the simple annunciation of its