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Pekin.)

CHINESE FUNERALS.

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by buffoons, and torch-bearers, and a motley crowd of friends and acquaintances. The religious ceremony consists in the bride and bridegroom worshipping together before the spirit-tablets of the bridegroom's ancestors. After a day spent in feasting, complimenting the bride, and general merriment, at the last moment the bride's veil is removed, and the two contracting parties see each other's face for the first time.

Funerals of adult Chinese, and especially of parents, are made the occasion of many extravagant and expensive ceremonies. Great care is taken as to coffins, and they are even treasured by the living, in readiness for the fatal event. For a son to present a handsome coffin to his father is by no means an unpleasant hint, but is looked upon as a very commendable proof of filial regard. When a Chinaman is deposited in his coffin, clad in rich robes, amidst the chanting of priests, the lighting of candles, and offering of incense, his friends must all come and pay their respects, and are legally liable to penalties if they neglect this duty. For weeks, sometimes for months, the coffin, in which cotton and quicklime have also been placed, is kept in the house ; then, on a multiple of seven days from the death, a procession of men and women, clad in coarse white garments, follow, and the men-mourners have to wear a white badge on their queues for months. The massive coffin is borne along by some twelve, or even twenty men. The mourning is something terrible ; generally the near relatives have to be supported by friends on each side, and now and again some one is overcome with convulsive grief, and a carpet is spread on the ground, on which the mourner may roll for a few minutes, and get over his violent agitation. Those who can afford it procure hired mourners, in addition to doing the utmost they can themselves. Ever and anon persons connected with the procession burn paper imitations of money, which, according to some authorities, is intended to purchase for the departed immunity from molestation by evil spirits who may happen to be passing. By the lavish display and extravagance of their funeral ceremonies families often embarrass themselves considerably, and, indeed, have been known to reduce themselves to poverty rather than that a parent should be consigned to the grave without due honour.

The environs of Pekin contain many objects of interest. The department of Pekin is not naturally fertile, consisting for the most part of broad sandy plains; but in some portions near the capital, by building terraces and transporting vegetable earth, and by constant irrigation, smiling landscapes have been created.

The European cemeteries, without the walls, naturally possess great interest for the foreign visitor to Pekin. The Jesuit burial-ground, near one of the western gates, contains, in large white marble tombs, the bodies of many of the Roman Catholic missionaries who took such a conspicuous position at Pekin in bygone times. The stones are about ninety in number, bearing inscriptions in Latin, Chinese, or Manchoo. Ricci, Schall, Verbiest, are among the historic names recorded on these monuments. There is also a large monument of white marble in honour of Francis Xavier, the Apostle of the East, and another in honour of Joseph, the husband of Mary. The Russian burial-ground, to the north of the city, derives a melancholy interest from the small plain monument “sacred to the memory” of Captain Brabazon, Lieutenant Anderson, and eleven others, all victims to Chinese treachery. There is also a French cemetery, containing a monument to the memory of the officers and soldiers who died during the campaign in China in 1860.

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There are several temples outside the walls. The spacious Altar to Earth is near one of the northern gates, where, surrounded by groves of trees and a moat, is the double-terraced altar on which the Emperor annually sacrifices. The Altar to the Sun and the Altar to the Moon show similar arrangements : the latter is approached by a broad avenue a quarter of a mile in length. There is also a Lama Temple of great celebrity outside the An-ting Gate, containing a colossal monument of white marble, entirely covered with carvings forming a pictorial epitome of the birth, life, and death of the founder of Buddhism. The principal object of interest in the environs of Pekin has been for centuries the Summer Palace of the Emperors, enclosed by a wall six miles in length, situated ten miles to the north-west of the capital, and approached by a road paved with slabs of granite. It has long been the principal residence of the Emperor and his Court, the palace at Pekin only being used occasionally. Within the enclosure were no less than thirty-six palaces and a large number of pagodas, kiosks, and temples, which in 1860 were pillaged, and to a large extent destroyed, by the Allied Forces. The invaders were amazed at the interminable succession of pagodas, temples, white marble palaces, and fantastic towers, containing treasures and curiosities of untold value. Some of the principal objects were taken possession of by the generals in the names of France and England respectively; the officers and soldiers loaded themselves with as much as they could lay hands on; and finally the whole place was set on fire, as a retributive measure in consequence of the murder of the thirteen prisoners above referred to. considered that the Chinese Government would be thus taught that they could not with impunity treacherously scize and cruelly torture persons who put faith in their professions of peace. It seems probable that in this very royal residence the tortured victims had been exhibited for the amusement of the residents, as the clothes of the victims, soiled and stained with blood, were found in the palace.

To reach the Great Wall of China from Pekin is a journey of about forty miles. In the year 240 B.C., Che-wang-te, the first Emperor of the Tsin dynasty, began this stupendous work. It is fifteen hundred miles in length, but is not uniform in strength for the whole distance. The task was evidently performed in a much more perfunctory manner at a distance from the capital than in its immediate neighbourhood, where the work could be readily inspected by the Emperor. In some parts it is a mere terrace of earth, that can be crossed and re-crossed on horseback. Near Pekin it consists of two walls of brick or masonry, several feet apart, with the intervening space filled in with earth. Square towers forty feet in height rise at frequent intervals, and at every important pass there is a strong fortress.

The great canal system of China has been justly extolled by travellers. The noblest work in the series is the Grand Canal, starting near Pekin, of which Barrow writes :"I may safely say that, in point of magnitude, our most extensive inland navigation of England can no more be compared to the grand trunk that intersects China than a garden fish-pond to the great lake of Windermere.” This canal is 1,000 miles in length, and occupied 200,000 men for years in its construction. It is now greatly out of repair, and in some parts almost completely filled up.

Pekin.]

THE RED OR PROHIBITED CITY.

263

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crossing a small stream. From the enclosure, three doors, two for mandarins and a central one for the Emperor alone, conduct to the largest of the palace courts, surrounded by magazines, containing the Imperial treasures, precious stones, robes, arms, etc.

The Imperial Hall, or Hall of the Great Union, stands in this court—a square edifice about 150 feet in each direction, adorned with sculptured panels and golden dragons, and paved with marble. The throne occupies the centre of the hall. Two adjoining halls on the same raised foundation are used as a saloon and robing-room.

From the court of the Imperial Hall a marble staircase leads to the Gate of the Kien-tsing-tung, or Tranquil Place of Heaven. Very special permission is needed even for courtiers to enter here. It is used as a council-chamber. Beyond it is the special domain of the Empress, and beyond this lies the Imperial Garden, with its flower-beds and pavilions, its hanging gardens, lake, and fountains.

The eastern division of the Prohibited City contains the offices of the Privy Council and Treasury, also the Library, and the Temple of Intense Thought, in which offerings are made to Confucius and other sages of old time. Here, also, are the temple in which the Emperor adores his ancestors, and numerous palaces inhabited by princes of the blood and their retainers. The Hall of Distinguished Sovereigns, the printing office, and other State buildings occupy the western division. The Prohibited City also contains barracks and stables, capable of containing 15,000 men and 5,000 horses, so that it is in itself a fortress, defended by the two outer cities, which are fortresses also.

A broad avenue leads from the southern gate of the palace enclosures to the Tatsing Gate of the Yellow City. On each side are large parks, enclosing ancient and abandoned bronzeries. Close to the Ta-tsing Gate are vast caves for the storage of wood and other fuel. We must briefly allude to a few other objects of interest in the Tartar City, without attempting to localise them, before proceeding to speak of its Chinese neighbour. The Temple of the Tower is a famous one, with a large Buddhist convent of great renown attached to it. The Grand Place is remarkable for little but its extent and regularity. In the centre a fountain springs from a marble basin, and on each side of its octagonal area rise symmetrical palaces. The Imperial Pagoda of Kwang-min-tien stands in a pleasant park, and is one of the most beautiful in Pekin. The body of the edifice is of polished red bricks, the roof of brilliant blue tiles, and at the various projecting corners hang flags and lanterns, and little bells that tinkle to every passing breeze. In the interior are gilded idols, and pictures of gods and genii. The once famous elephant

, . stables are now only ruins. The Ming Emperors kept thirty elephants as a part of their royal state. The Manchoo Emperors despised these symbols of Asiatic despotism, and gradually suffered the establishment to decline. At the time of the Allied Expedition of 1860 there was but one elephant in the stable—a feeble veteran more than a century old, white with age and powerless for offence or defence, and blind of one eye.

The Peh-tang and Nam-tang are the two most important of the four Roman Catholic mission stations of Pekin. The former is in the Yellow City, and consists of a series of pavilions and large courtyards, and an ancient chapel with a tower, from which there is a splendid view. Many of the photographic views of Pekin sold in Europe have been taken

. from this point. The surrounding park is so large that the Chinese call it a forest.

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thousands of the inhabitants were massacred. But from the smoking ruins a goodly city again rose, and several Roman Emperors made it their temporary abode. Constantine was staying here when summoned to assume the imperial purple. When the Roman Empire began to break up, the Northern hordes swept down upon Lyons. Julian (afterwards the apostate Emperor) annihilated the first bands; but after his departure, to fulfil his destinies on a wider field, fresh swarms successively appeared, and about the middle of the fifth century Attila, the “scourge of God,” sacked the city, and almost all the memorials

, of its ancient glory perished. For a time it was owned by the Visigoths, then by the Burgundians, whose king, Chilperic, made it the capital of his kingdom in 476. For awhile it enjoyed something like tranquillity ; but its returning prosperity was soon again checked by inundations and pestilence and wars. From the sixth to the ninth century it belonged alternately to France and Burgundy. The history of Lyons at this period resembles that of Paris-feeble kings, with maires-du-palais controlling everything; coalitions of barons for putting down this man and setting up that; an absence of law or any public force capable of preventing excesses; and the murder of the wise and generous men who (chiefly from the ranks of the Church) occasionally came forward on behalf of the mass of the people.

In 571 the Lombards crossed the Alps, ravaged Burgundy, and pillaged the city of Lyons. But in 715 an invasion took place of a far more terrible character. The Saracens, masters of Spain, swarmed into the southern provinces of France, spreading ruin and devastation in their track. Lyons was taken and completely overthrown, its churches destroyed, and when the conquerors rode away with their plunder only a heap of ruins remained.

Under Charles Martel and Pepin le Bref the Saracens were hurled back into Spain, and Lyons slowly rose from its ashes. The slopes of its two bills and the banks of its two rivers were again covered with buildings when Charlemagne appeared on the scene. He had united in his powerful hands the whole French Monarchy and its dependencies, had overcome all resistance from within and from without, and was now applying the whole force of his genius and his will to the advancement of civilisation and the establishment of law and justice. While retaining absolute authority in his own hands, he acted through royal commissioners, who carried out his plans. The commissioner at Lyons was Bishop Leydrade, under whose wise and beneficenû rule a career of prosperity again set in. Building went on apace; a whole new quarter, La Juiverie, was added to the city to attract the Jews, of whose mercantile instincts Lyons felt she had need ; churches, monasteries, and public edifices rose from their ruins; art and commerce flourished. Charlemagne wanted to spread education ; Leydrade alone seemed to comprehend and to strive to second the imperial wishes. He opened public schools in the city, and when, in the dark age that succeeded, the people and nobles of France were alike stupidly ignorant, it was a common thing in Lyons to know how to read, calculate, and sing.

After some further changes, Lyons found itself, towards the end of the ninth century, under the dominion of the Archbishops and Chapter of St. John ; first as feudal barons of the German Empire, and afterwards as independent lords. Against these ecclesiastical rulers the city revolted in the thirteenth century. Fierce struggles ensued till, in 1312, Philip le Bel annexed the city to the realm of France, but confirmed it in its local

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Lyons.)

SITUATION OF THE CITY.

277

government by two consuls, who continued to exercise a respected judicial power till the eighteenth century.

Having briefly traced the history of Lyons from its first colonisation to the period of its final incorporation into the French kingdom, we need only add such further details as may suggest themselves in connection with the various sites and monuments. To the

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early introduction of Christianity into the city and the heroic sufferings of its martyrsto the religious wars of the sixteenth century and the revolutionary struggle and massacres of the eighteenth—and to some other events of importance, we shall have occasion to refer in the course of our survey.

The Lyons of to-day is a stately city, splendidly situated at the junction of the Rhône and Saône. It occupies the tongue of land about three miles long and three-quarters of a mile broad between those rivers, and also a portion of the opposite banks. Seen for the first time, from one of the neighbouring heights, it presents an imposing spectacle. Upon the peninsula between the two rivers are the districts of Perrache, Bellecour, St. Clair, and

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