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were observed. It appeared, indeed, to our visitors that all their ancient customs were fast giving way, under the advice and instruction of the missionaries, who are justly blamed for carrying their austere principles and system of reform, in some respects, too far for a people just emerging from a state of barbarism; but more of this hereafter.

Karaimoku's complaint was the dropsy. The preservation of this man's life, at the present crisis, being considered of the utmost importance to the welfare of the islands, during the minority of the young king, the surgeon of the Blonde volunteered a proposal to tap him, as the only means of prolonging his days. It required some address, however, to convince the chiefs, that boring a hole in a man's belly, which they consider as the seat of life, could be done without danger; but Karaimoku, on being asked if he felt any objection to the operation, answered, No; my life is in your hands, do as you may think good.' When the water had been drawn off, during which the regent frequently exclaimed, 'maitaî, maitaî,'-' good, good,'-the wonder and delight of the chiefs were unbounded, they having seriously expected to see his highness's breakfast issue through the aperture.

A few days after this, a national council was summoned for the purpose of investing the young king with the insignia of royalty, and Lord Byron was invited to attend it. All the governors of the islands and other chiefs, male and female, were present, and most of them delivered their opinions in set speeches on the occasion, expressing their resolution to do all in their power to amend the laws, to live according to the precepts of the new religion, and to promote reading and writing. The heroic Kapeolani then said, that on the lands belonging to herself and her husband, Nahi, she had used every endeavour to establish laws for prohibiting robbery, murder, and, especially, drunkenness, adultery, infanticide, and that, on the whole, she had been tolerably successful. A subsequent visit to her district fully confirmed this: In her domains,' says Mr. Bloxam, the son inherits his father's property, without even an appeal to the chief. Theft is punished, murder almost unknown, and infants enjoy all the benefits of parental love. The decency, cleanliness, and even elegance of the house, and the dresses of Nahi and Kapeolani, give earnest of a speedy improvement among all classes of these well-disposed islanders, and entitle these two chiefs to a very high rank among the benefactors of their country.'


But to return to the council.-Lord Byron, being now called on to speak, delivered a paper containing a few hints for their consideration, which, if approved, they might, he said, adopt as their own; but not as the dictates of the British government,

which had no wish whatever to interfere between them and their customs, as they must be the best judges of what suited the people. The paper contained the following hints:

1. That the king be the head of the people.


2. That all the chiefs swear allegiance to the king.


3. That the lands which are now held by the chiefs shall not be taken from them, but shall descend to their legitimate children, except in cases of rebellion, and then all their property shall be forfeited to the king.


4. That a tax be regularly paid to the king to keep up his dignity and establishment.

5. That no man's life be taken away, except by consent of the king, or the regent for the time being, and of twelve chiefs.


6. That the king, or regent, can grant pardons at all times.

7. That all the people shall be free, and not bound to any one chief. 8. That a port duty be laid on all foreign vessels.'-pp. 156, 157.

These suggestions are, it can scarcely be denied, simple, intelligible, and even practicable; and as such we are willing to believe they will be considered by most of our readers as reflecting credit on Lord Byron: others, no doubt, will regret the loss of a noble opportunity for favouring the inhabitants of the Sandwich Islands with a complete constitution, and code to match, ready cut and dry from the workshop of Mr. Jeremy Bentham, or some other lawgiver of the like authority-and even desiderate the programma of a liberal university at Owhyhee, the professors of course to be chosen indiscriminately from the Christian and Pagan parts of the population.-But to proceed with our story:

All matters of public concern being now settled, the officers of the Blonde amused themselves by making excursions in the island, and particularly to the great volcano of Kairauea, which we have already described; and after many exchanges, purchases, and gifts between them and the natives, the ship, abundantly stored with presents of fruit and fresh provisions, stood out to sea from Honoruru bay. The two brothers, Boki and Karaimoku, remained on board till she had reached some distance from the harbour. It was evident, that both felt a deep regret at the departure of their English friends, with whom they had so much reason to be satisfied; and when the moment of parting came, and it was necessary they should quit the ship, Boki, pressing Lord Byron's hands, repeatedly exclaimed, 'Aroha! aroha! nui, nui, aroha !'-'Blessing, blessing, great, great blessing!' 'We saluted them,' says the narrator, 'with fifteen guns, as they rowed towards the shore; and so took a final leave of two men, who, considering the state of civilization in which they were born, are among the most remarkable of their time.' Nor did Lord Byron part with his friends without


emotion. It is due to him to say that from the moment of their embarkation in England to his quitting the islands, his attention to his guests, and his anxiety to satisfy every want and wish, were unabated; he took an interest in everything that concerned them, and by the kindness and simplicity of his manners and deportment, during the passage and his stay on the islands, secured the personal affection of every chief with whom he had to deal.

There was one point, however, on which Lord Byron appears justly to have felt some uneasiness, and this was the tone, manner, and line of conduct of the American missionaries, particularly one of the name of Bingham. The influence which this man had acquired over the simple natives, and his uncalled for interference in petty concerns wholly unconnected with his mission, were but too manifest on several occasions-but never more openly, nor more offensively, than when Boki, one Saturday evening, expressed a wish to entertain his countrymen with an exhibition of phantasmagoria. The young king and his sister, with many of the chiefs and people, had assembled to see the show, when, behold! a message was received from this Bingham, 'that on so near an approach of the Sabbath, prayer was a fitter employment!'-and such was the ascendancy which this man had gained, that the two poor children were carried off in tears, and many of the chiefs and people followed to the missionary meeting.' Mr. Stewart, another of the missionaries, ashamed of the indecency of such conduct, was anxious to explain the matter, by saying that they followed the Jewish mode of reckoning, and considered Sunday to begin on Saturday at noon.

It is greatly to be feared, indeed, that these (we doubt not, wellintentioned) men are creating much mischief among these simpleminded islanders. They have so little judgment, and are so little acquainted with the human heart, as to let their zeal out-run discretion on many occasions and in many shapes; and this we knew to be the case before now. But certainly we were not prepared for such amazing absurdity as the attempt to force the darkest and most dreary parts of puritan discipline upon these poor people, whose character and habits make it so clear that an exactly opposite course ought to be adopted, by those who wish to win them to the pure faith of Him who, with his own lips, proclaimed his burden to be easy.

By Mr. Ellis's own account, the subjects usually chosen for the discourses of these missionaries are the most unsuitable to be addressed to an uneducated multitude that can possibly be imagined-such, for instance, as the Virgin Mary and the immaculate Conception-the Trinity and the Holy Ghost: these and other mysterious doctrinal points,-which the preachers


themselves, from the nature of their education, are unfit to handle, -draw from their simple hearers remarks and questions that puzzle their teachers not a little for an answer. They hold out to their disciples little or no encouragement, either by precept or example, to industrious habits. The shoemaker who may have left his stall, and the tailor who has escaped from the shopboard to commence evangelical preaching, would think it degradation to instruct those poor islanders in the use of the awl or the needle. According to their rule, the more time that is spent in preaching, praying, and singing, the better. The least that is required from the naked, or half-naked, converts of Owhyhee, &c. is to attend at church five times every day. On Sundays they are strictly prohibited from cooking any kind of victuals, or even making a fire. Boki was refractory on this point, and protested strongly against a taboo of this rigid nature, insisting on having his tea on Sunday mornings as he was accustomed in London; the English, he said, were as good and religious a people as they were, and yet he saw thousands walking and riding about in the parks on Sundays; and saw no sign of the Sunday dinner being worse than the Saturday.

Indeed, we cannot help thinking that the progressive spread of Christianity would be greatly promoted and hastened if the good people of England, who raise such vast sums annually for the maintenance of evangelical preachers, would send out, in lieu of them, an equal number of the brethren of the Moravian church, whose simplicity of manners, and readiness to instruct the people among whom they are placed in the various trades and occupations of civilized society, are admirably calculated to inspire confidence and give encouragement to barbarous nations to follow their example; by such means the progress of civilization and Christianity would go hand in hand.

The ill effects of a contrary system would appear to have but too clearly shown themselves in the Sandwich Islands. The continued malady and incapacity of Karaimoku had thrown the infant king wholly under the control of Mr. Bingham. We have seen some letters of Captain Beechey, who visited these islands in May last, on his way to Behring's Straits, in which he says, The efforts of the few zealous missionaries are tending, as fast as possible, to lay waste the whole country, and plunge the inhabitants into civil war and bloodshed. Thousands of acres of land, that before produced the finest crops, are now sandy plains. Provisions are so extremely scarce, that not long since the king sent to beg a little bread of the American consul; the fishery is almost deserted, and nothing flourishes but the missionary school.' The reason is obvious enough. The poor simple natives are con




tinually threatened with eternal punishment if they neglect the one thing needful;' they are told that the morrow will take care for itself; that lilies grow without toiling or spinning, &c. met two pious scholars,' says Captain Beechey, with a slate covered with writing, on their way to school, and asked them if they thought it right to pray all day instead of working; to which they replied, that praying was much better than working.' To be sure it is; and so would the West India negroes think, in spite of all that our free-labour philosophers and philanthropists can say to the contrary. So long as an uneducated man, in such a climate as that of the Sandwich Islands, where nature has provided him with simple food without the exertion of labour, can bask at his ease in the sun, loll in the shade, and loiter away the time in a parrot-like repetition of prayers and psalms, (which, of course, such an eternal repetition must soon come to be,) it would be strange indeed if he did not think that such an easy life was much better than working.' Mr. Ellis, after giving an account of their severe athletic exercises, at the exhibition of which several thousands attend, says, that the missionaries having expressed their surprise that they should labour so arduously at their sport, and so leisurely at their plantations and houses, were generally answered, that they built houses and cultivated their gardens from necessity, but followed their amusements because their hearts were fond of them.'


The apprehension of civil war, expressed by Captain Beechey, appears to be owing to the misapplication of another text of scripture, which says, that in the kingdom of heaven none is before or after another, none is greater or less than another;—which, as the American teachers apply and expound it, is exactly to tell these poor creatures, that all men are equal,'—a doctrine which Mr. Bingham's countrymen are more ready to preach than to practise. The effect it had produced in lowering the authority of the chiefs was visible enough. Boki complained grievously that where two thousand of his tenants once willingly worked for him a certain number of days, at seed-time and harvest,—which is the condition (something like our soccage-tenure) on which they hold their lands, he could scarcely now prevail on ten to comply with the old custom. No doubt, therefore, this idleness will increase, so long as the islands produce, with little or no cultivation, the bread-fruit, the banana or plantain, the cocoa-nut and the rose-apple, the sweet potato, the arum or mountain taro, and the sugar-cane. Something of the same sort, it appears, has taken place at Tahaité, even to a greater extent. This island, Captain Beechey says, is still the beautiful, fertile country it has ever been represented; but it is lamentable to observe the change that



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