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possible. It is the policy of the sovereigns of all these nations to degrade, as much as possible, all foreigners in the eyes of their subjects, thinking thereby to elevate themselves and add to their own dignity by comparison.
It took them twenty hours to reach the mouth of the river that leads to Hué. Though narrow without the bar, it spreads out within to a vast lake; it is, in fact, an estuary with sandy and barren shores, on which were several hundred boats lying in front of small miserable fishing villages. A little farther up, however, the appearance of the country was wholly changed.
• The scenery becomes now very interesting. Islands, covered with cultivation, are visible at a distance; several vast rivers appear to pour their waters into one basin. Thousands of boats are seen returning from, or proceeding to sea. There were wonen in all the boats, and they seemed to have more than their due share of whatever labour was going forward. The superior politeness which we had reinarked amongst these people has not ameliorated the condition of females in society. - p. 342.
When they had advanced about nine miles, they were ordered to halt, and a boat from the · Mandarin of Elephants,' came alongside and conveyed them to their destined lodging, which was ample and convenient; but the place was every where thickly surrounded by armed soldiers, who never for a moment lost sight of a single individual of the mission. Compared with the native troops of India,' says Mr. Finlayson, and of the king of Siam, the soldiers we saw here made a very respectable ap
A messenger now came to demand the letter for the king, which was given up with the Chinese translation; but the next day it was brought back, as containing expressions not fit to be laid before his majesty, with an observation that the governor writes as though he was writing to his equal.' It took the Cochin-Chinese scribe and Mr. Crawford's interpreter a whole day to concoct a new translation to the taste of his Cochin-Chinese majesty. They were now carried about six miles farther up the river, to wait on the Mandarin of Elephants. The country was every where intersected with streams and canals, and it was agreed, that the banks of the river Hué presented the most beautiful and interesting scenery of any river we had seen in Asia. The villages were numerous and comfortable; the neatness and cleanliness of the houses most remarkable; and the grounds and little gardens round the houses were adorned, with considerable taste, with flowers and ornamental trees; the natives themselves seemed cheerful, contented, and lively.
A question was asked by the Mandarin of Elephants, if the envoy had any thing to communicate beyond the matters contained in
the letter to the king; and Mr. Crawford having replied, 'only' a few words on commercial matters,' the Mandarin observed, as he of Saigon had done, that the ports of Cochin-China were open to all nations; that the duties f late had been diminished, and that the affairs of traders would always meet with proper attention.' Mr. Crawford then asked when he might expect to have the honour of obtaining an audience of the king ? • We were little prepared,' says our author, ‘ for the answer to this; '—'that the business of the envoy being entirely of a commercial nature, it altogether precluded the possibility of his being admitted to the presence of the king. This was indeed a severe and unexpected blow to the hopes of the envoy, who pleaded the hardship of his having come from so distant a country to cement the bonds of friendship between the two nations, and to congratulate the king of Cochin-China on his 'accession to the throne—that the determination was wholly unaccountable, of not receiving the envoy of the Governor-general of India,' a man,' says Mr. Crawford, of the most exalted rank, the intimate friend of his sovereign, looked up to by all the world, and holding correspondence with the, greatest kings of the east'--but all would not do. To put an end to the discussion, the music was ordered ' to strike up, and the players to come in; but, in the present temper of their minds, the party found the performance of the one so ridiculous and unmeaning,' and of the other. so abominable,' that they asked permission to retire.
Mr. Crawford certainly ought to have known, for hic has written and published largely on all the countries in the east, that the Chinese (and the Cochin-Chinese are the same people, using the same laws and language) consider merchants and traders as a degraded class, and place them accordingly in the lowest rank of the community. He should have kept to himself his conimercial views till after the audience, and never have put them forward as the main object of his mission. This, however, was not the last of his mortifications; he had scarcely got home when the same old man who had taken the letter to the king came to say that the presents could not be accepted; that, with regard to the ceremony, it was necessary that all the court should be in full dresses; and that such state was reserved for the envoys of kings; that had Mr. Crawford come from the king of England he would have been received; but that, as it was, the governor of Saigon might just as well send an envoy to his sovereign.
Hitherto they had seen nothing of that wonderful work which encompasses the city of Hué, built under the direction of some French engineers, and described by us in our review of Captain White's Voyage;' but on their return, accompanied by the only
two surviving officers, Messrs. Vannier and Chaigneaux, (since returned to Europe,) who held the rank of mandarins, and assisted at the conference, they passed up an arm of the river which brought them as suddenly as unexpectedly,
ubi nunc ingentia cernes Mænia, surgentemque novæ Carthaginis arcem. In short they found themselves immediately in front of one of the quadrangular sides of this newly fortified city. But here again our author differs from Captain White, or rather the Frenchman from whom he had his description; thus instead of nine it is about six miles in circumference; the walls, instead of sixty, are from twenty to thirty feet high; the ditch thirty instead of one hundred feet in width; and instead of twelve hundred the walls are capable of mounting eight hundred pieces of cannon. Our author found it, however, both within and without, an extraordinary work of great beauty, regularity, and strength. The granaries, storehouses, magazines, barracks, arsenal for artillery, were all well and substantially built, and most of them erected on the margin of a navigable canal that traverses the city.
At a meeting of mandarins our envoy was doomed to receive additional vexations from these experienced diplomatists. They produced a letter addressed to the Governor-general, not from the king, but from one of his ministers, and a list of presents, consisting of a few cattees of cinnamon, some aguila wood, two rhinoceros' horns, and some sugarcandy. The envoy, however, declined receiving them without a letter from the king himself. One of the mandarins observed tható whatever might be the custom in Europe, it was quite contrary to their notions of propriety to open a letter intended for the king, and that the letter from the Governor-general of Bengal to the king of Cochin-China had been opened at Saigon. This was rather too much; for although it might be imprudent in the envoy to give it, we doubt not that if the governor of Saigon had not obtained it from him he would have been deprived of his situation. After this a Jittle mandarin from Turon started up and said, 'You come from the governor of a province; you offer presents to a great king; he does not receive them, and now you reject the presents which he has deigned to offer. In short, after much useless discussion, it was finally determined that even the letter for the Governorgeneral (though only from one of the ministers) could not be delivered, unless the presents were also accepted. Matters being thus finally and unfavourably settled, the old mandarin at once laid aside his distant and formal state, laughed and talked in the most familiar manner, called in four or five of his children, of whom, he said, he had thirty-six then in his house, the survivors
of fifty-four, and, though sixty-six years of age, he expected to have many more. They now sat down to a feast of which fat pork and rotten eggs are said to have been, to the taste of the mandarins, the most delectable dainties; if the latter contained young birds so much the better, and better still if they were full grown. The defeated envoy, however, appears not to have enjoyed the feast.
A hint was now given that the sooner they departed the more agreeable; and the offer was made of their returning either by land or by water: as the winter season had set in, being near the end of October, they preferred returning to Turon Bay by land. It became the more necessary to hasten their departure, as, in the true spirit of their neighbours, the Chinese, a marked change immediately took place in the manner of their treatment. They descended,' says Mr. Finlayson, to acts of petty meanness, which were altogether contemptible, and much more calculated to excite contempt, derision, and pity, than any hostile feeling. Accordingly, the envoy and his suite set out the very next day, in two boats, with a third containing an armed guard, and proceeded along a fine canal, which at the distance of eight or nine miles opened into a large estuary, appearing like an inland lake; beyond which they crossed a hilly country in palanquins, each carried by a couple of men, whose good humour, strength, and agility are highly commended. The kind disposition of these poor people was evinced in their extreme attention to the persons
and property entrusted to their care; and in their readiness, as they proceeded, to collect for them such flowers and fruits as attracted their notice. The great beauty of the country and the variety of its scenery are described as objects worthy of admiration. Rice appeared to be the chief article of cultivation both in the plains and uplands. The numerous villages on the road were neat, clean, and comfortable. On the fourth day they descended the hills to Turon Bay, and, having rejoined their ship, set sail for Calcutta.
Thus ended this ill-concerted and luckless mission, much in the way that any one acquainted with the nature of the people to whom it was sent, and the object to be attained, would have anticipated; but which, by a little management, and a more firm and dignified line of conduct on the part of the envoy, might at least have commanded a greater degree of respect than was shown to the representative of the man’ who is looked up to by all the world,' and who holds correspondence with the greatest kings of the east.'
Art. y.-), Narrative of an Ercursion to the Mountains of
Piemont in the year 1923, and Researches among the Vaudois or Waldenses, Protestant Inhabitants of the Cottian Alps. With Maps, 8c. By the Rev. William Stephen Gilly.ed edit.
London. Syo. 1825, 2. The History of the Christian Church, including the very inte
resting Account of the Waldenses and Albigenses. By William
Jones, % vols. 4th edit. 3. A Brief Sketch of the History and Present Situation of the
Vaudois. By Hugh Dyke Acland, Esq. London. 8vo. 1825. THE
HE Vaudois have recently been called seditious fanatics in a
publication of Dr. Milner's, not more remarkable for truth in its statements, than for charity in its spirit and courtesy in its style.
These, who gave earliest notice, as the lark
Fell Obloquy pursues with hideous bark.--Ilordsworth. Unluckily for Dr. Milner and for other Romish writers who, like him, are repeating calumnies which have been again and again confuted, a faithful account of what the Vaudois were and continue to be, has been laid before the public in one of the most interesting volumes that has recently appeared.
Mr. Gilly, the author of this volume, happened to attend a meeting of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, on the day when a letter was read from Ferdinand Peyrani, one of the pastors of the ancient Protestant church of the Waldenses. The pastor stated the numbers at that time existing in the valleys of Piemont as amounting to 18,000, divided into thirteen parishes; he represented their clergy as in the greatest poverty, the churches in want of books, the people exposed, since peace had been restored, to fresh injuries from the Romanists, and even the continuance of their church in danger, not from any want of attachment in its members, but because the stipends of the clergy were so low that they could not by any exertions support the expense of bringing up their children to succeed them in the ministry. " Mr. Gilly, who had then only an imperfect general knowledge of what related to the Vaudois, was so much inpressed by this affecting representation, that the subject, he says, took complete possession of him. He immediately made the