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nation, and neither the Government nor the public had in any way the least control over such appointments. Fortunately, (thanks to the new act) it is not the case now, for proper, and competent officers are appointed to examine masters and mates, and to shew the necessity of having such examinations, seventeen candidates offered themselves for masters and mates at the North era ports last week, and only two could pass for masters, and four for mates; a proof that some laws were wanting to oblige persons, who have such a charge, to qualify ; consequently, when the new act is fully understood, I beg again to remark that to merchants, shipowners, and the public, it has an especial claim, and will prove a very great boon to the Mercantile Marine of England.

W. JI. II.


45, Prince Street, Bristol, March, 6th, 1851, SIR.—There are several methods by which the day of the month may be found at sea, if lost under any circumstances resembling those recorded in your last number, as befalling the brig Ocean, of Liverpool. The two most simple are, first, the taking the apparent distance of the sun, a star, or planet, and finding from pages 13 to 18 of the month, in the Nautical Almanac, the date when this lunar distance would occur, which will be the required day. The second method is by finding the latitude of the ship by the meridian altitude of a star, which as the annual variation in declination is but a few seconds would not be sensibly affected by date. The difference between this latitude and the meridianal zenith distance, of either sun or moon, will give the declination of the object. The date found in the Nautical Almanac when the object has this declination will give the day, if the sun be observed, and if the moon, the hour.

The following example will illustrate both modes. On the day of convalescence, let the sun's meridian passage be observed, and his zenith distance ascertained, suppose it to be 20° 27' N.

Suppose that shortly after 7 P.M., the apparent angular distance of Aldebaran from the moon's centre was observed to be 40° 12' E., by referring to the Nautical Almanac, I find this lunar distance recorded both on the 7th Feb., and the 6th March, one of which must be the day required. I decide on the latter, because the time shewn by the almanac is between 6b. and 9h. P.M., nearly agreeing with my time of observation, whilst the time on Feb. 7th falls between noon and 3h P.M. However to be more sure as I find Sirius nearly south, I observe his meridian passage which I find occurs about 7th. His altitude is 57° 59' S. The true time of this star's passing the meridian on the 6th March, I find to be 7h, 29m. P.M., nearly agreeing with my time ; on Feb. 7th the passage takes place at 9h. 21m. P.,M. thus giving the same date as the lunar. But as there is a possibility of this difference of time being caused by a difference of longitude, from the meridian altitude of Sirius I find the latitude of the ship to be 15° 30' N. Suppose the ship to have made 50' N., difference of latitude since noon, this will give the latitude for that time 14° 40' N., the difference between which and the sun's zenith distance gives the sun's declination 5° 47' S., which also agrees with the 6th March. Having thus obtained the day of the month, the time and longitude may be found in the manner usually employed for these problems,

If, sir, you deem the foregoing observations worthy of a place in your

valuable publication, I hope, many of your nautical readers will derive amusement in verifying the practicability of the problem ; and trust none will be compelled to practise the directions from necessity. To the Editor N.M

JNO. Sgaton. We hope the Commander of the Ocean, will now see how he might have found his date and position, without resorting to the clumsy method of going to Sierra Leone to be told it.ED.)

CELEBES.* The island of Celebes is, according to the existing administrative disposition, as set forth in the Dutch report, divided as follows:

1. Residence of Menado.- It forms a separate division of government, under the higher authority of the Governor of the Moluccas, and will thus be treated of under that government.

2. The territory of the Sultan of Ternate on the east coast of Celebes.This also is placed under the government of the Moluccas, and belongs to the residency of Ternate, under which head it will be described.

3. Government of Celebes and the dependencies.—This great division includes the whole remaining part of the Celebes, and the surrounding islands, besides the island groups south of it to and including Sumbawa, where amongst others the Sultan of Biema is established, whose powers also extend over the western half of the island of Flores, called Mangaray.

The kingdom of Goa or Makassar had extended its power over almost the whole of Celebes in the middle of the 17th century by its weapons. In the beginning of this century our Company had already established a factory at Makassar, which having at one time been broken up was again re-established. With an eye to her interests in the Molucca Archipelago, and faithful to her principles of state policy, she at last established herself as protector of the kingdoms subject to Goa. Bloody wars followed, which in 1669 finally put an end to the predominance of Makassar. The possessions of Ternate in the north and east of Celebes, were restored to that kingdom. Different districts and smaller states on the west and south coasts of the island were ceded to the Company. The other kingdoms, by the conclusion of treaties, were united by it in a general confederacy under its protection ; whereby the kingdom of Boni was established as a counterpoise to the power of Goa, and placed in the same position as the last. The ceded district of Makassar was declared the chief possession, to the town of which the name of Vlaardigen was given and to the fort that of Rotterdam. The kingdom of Boni, thus raised from its state of depression, by degrees so increased in importance, that the difficulties since experienced are principally to be ascribed to its presumption. Makassar was, in terms of the capitulation of Java, delivered up to the English government in 1812. The pretensions of Boni compelled the British inter-government to send an expedition against that kingdom in 1814 which only had a momentary influence. In consequence of the London convention of 1814, Makassar returned under the Dutch government in the end of 1816, but in a state of disorder and misgovernment, that finally in 1824 and 1825 required to be put an end to by stringent military measures.

New treaties strengthened our disavowed rule; but it is only since the return of Boni in 1838 to the general confederacy, that we can consider order and peace as having been established in this government.

* From the Report of the Minister of Colonies to the Second Chamber of the States General of Holland.

A many sided ramified feudal system, bound up in one by the rights of the local chieftains, and moreover by an union of the authority exercised by the same, coupled with the existence of other smaller subordinate associations, constitutes the basis of the regulation of the native government, the natural oppression of which is often increased by the rivalry between Goa and Boni. The operation of the Dutch power is here threefold. The direct authority of government extends over the following subdivisions : the district of Makassar with the dependant islands ; the southern districts ; the northern districts, or Maros, Bulecomba and Bonthian, and Saleyer with the surrounding islands, and the south-eastern and south-western groups of smaller islands stretching from thence.

Under the indirect authority of government stand, according to special treaties, the feudal states of Kajeli, Tanette, Telle Wajo and Luwu.

All the other countries and kingdoms in this government form, according to the existing contracts, a general confederacy, of which the princes of Boni and Goa are the principal members, and at whose head is placed the Dutch government as protectors, clothed with the principal attributes of supremacy. Under its protection are placed the princes of the island of Sumbawa and the Sultan of Buton, but the last only belongs to the confederacy.

The Governor has his seat of government at the chief place Makassar. An assistant-resident is established at Maros, and manages the northern districts, as European functionaries do the divisions of the southern districts, Bulecomba and Bonthian, and of Saleyer, with the dependent islands. A similar functionary is placed at Biema on the island of Sumbawa.

The distinctive character of the inhabitants of this government is that of being enterprising seamen and traders. Only in the interior and on the south west side of the island is the agriculture, and that principally rice cultivation, of any consequence worth mention. The population is divided into two great races, who however have much similarity in manners and customs. They are, in the west the Makassars, of whom the prince of Goa is the principal, and to the east the Bugis, of which Boni or Bugie forms the most powerful state. The first are par excellence hardy tishers, who prosecute the search for tortoiseshell and tropang in the Molucca Archipelago even to New Guinea and New Holland. The last, amongst whom principally the Wajurese, are the great traders of the Archipelago, and as such are spread far and wide.

The total number of the population of this government is conjectured to amount to about 3 millions; that of the chief place is reckoned at 24,000, while the rest is placed at-in the northern districts 120,000, in the southern districts 70,000, Bulecomba and Bonthian 30,000, and Saleyer and the dependencies 40,000.

Makassar has been a free port since 1st January, 1847.


We are glad to find that the Board of Admiralty have issued an order prohibiting officers from smoking in the public streets, while in uniform; or in boats, while on duty.

This smoking of tobacco, is one of these acquired tastes which has often perplexed us to imagine the advantage of undergoing the ordeal.

However there is no accounting for taste, and we must confess we have as great a horror of the “weed" as honest Old Stowe, who, in his Chronicles NO. 4,--VOL XX.

2 E

of England, in speaking of tobacco, calls it “that stinking weede so much abused to God's dishonour, was first brought into this land by Sir Walter Raleigh, or by Sir John Hawkins, as some say, about the year 1565, but not used by Englishmen in many years after, though at this day, 1631, commonly used by most men, and many women."

In the Harleian Miscellany, there is a curious paper on the natural history of tobacco. “ I am confident" says the writer, “it is of the poisoness sort, for it intoxicates, inflames, vomits and purges, which operations are common to poisoness plants ; besides, every one knows that the oil of tobacco is one of the greatest poisons in nature; a few drops of it, falling upon the tongue of a cat, will immediately throw her into convulsions, under which she will die.”

The writer then describes at length the various modes of using it in different countries. Of the Irish he says " they do most commonly powder their tobacco, and snuff it up their nostrils, which some of our Eoglishmen do, who often chew and swallow it."

"As for the qualities, nature and use of tobacco, they may be very considerable, in several cases and circumstances, though King James himself has both writ and disputed very greatly against it, at (xford, and Simon Pauli, has published a very learned book against it. Some anatomists tell us most terrible stories of sooty brains and black lungs which have been seen in the dissections of dead bodies, which when living, had been accustomed to tobacco.

In 1734 to guard against fire, an order appears to have been issued by the Admiralty to the following effect:

“Such as smoak tobacco, are to take it in the forecastle, and in no other place, taking all possible care to prevent accident from fire. And by an order of the Navy Board, 5th November 1697. “ Tobacco was not to be smoaked in the yard nor in ships afloat, but over a tub of water."


YONDER is Africa, with one hundred and fifty millions of miserable, degraded, ignorant, lawless, superstitious idolaters. Whoever has stood upon her sands, has stood upon a continent that has geographical and physical peculiarities, which belong to no other of the great divisions of the globe. The latter appear, upon the face of them, to have been adapted to draw out the energies of the natives in their inequalities of temperature, soil, and surface, inviting the ingenuity and enterprise of man to overcome them, and in the varieties of their products tempting the interchanges of commerce ; thus affording ample encouragement to the progress of civil and social improvement. But Africa is still, as of old, a land of silence and of mystery. Like the interminable dreariness of her own deserts, her moral wastes of mind lie waiting for the approach of influences from abroad. No savage people have ever advanced to a civilized state without intercommunication with others. All the continents of the world, have in their turn, been occupied and civilized by means of colonies: but in no one of them did it appear so inevitably necessary, from a previous examination of circumstances, as in that of Africa. It is plain to the very eye, that Africa is a land to which civilization must be brought. The attempt has been made over and over again by devoted missionaries and others to penetrate that land, and seek to impart the blessings of civilization and christianity to her savage hordes. But the labour has been spent in vain. The white man cannot live in Africa. The annals of the Moravians, of Cape Colony, Sierra Leone, of Liberia, contain the records of the sacrifice of some of the best men that have lived to grace the pages of any people's history, in the vain attempt to accomplish something for her redemption through the instrumentality of white men. Who then is to do this work?

Let now any calm, reflectiag spectator of the present state of the world be asked to look at Africa, and then, from among the nations, point out the the people best calculated to do this work, and when his eyes falls upon the descendants of the sons of that continent now in America, will he not say * These are the people appointed for that work".-Colonization Herald,

THE BOSPHORUS-Screw Steamer.

Much interest has been lately occasioned by the remarkable performances of merchant screw-steamers, especially those which are designated Auxiliary.

These vessels are completely masted and fitted for sailing, as full rigged ships, or otherwise; however assisted, when necessary, by the screw.

The principle on which they act, is to sail whenever there is wind enough to give them a certain average speed (say eight or nine knots an hour) near their course; and to use steam only when the wind is light, or during calms; or in occasionally helping the vessel to make good way, while working to windward close-hauled.

Regular winds, such as the trades, are crossed as speedily as possible, with a full sail, just as in regular sailing vessels.

The screw-steamers do not usually make direct courses by the very shortest route, like full power steamers, lightly rigged; nor can they, when only provided with auxiliary power, equal their speed under steam alone; but as their consumption of coal is very small, and they sail faster than any vessel hampered with paddle boxes and wheels, they are not obliged to coal frequently, and by sailing much, and well, they actually beat the full power paddle steamers, on long voyages, while, from their greater capacity for carrying cargo, and their small consumption of fuel, they are sailed very much more economically, and of course return a larger profit.

The speedy return of the Bosphorus from the Cape of Good Hope is a proof of this statement, although that screw steamer, being a first experiment on a long ocean voyage, did not take the best course for demonstrating the problem, (of combining speed with economy,) so strikingly as her successors will, especially those of much larger tonnage.

The Bosphorus did not take the best course, nor did she follow the general rule of keeping “a full sail ” when there was a good breeze, though not a fair one, nor did she steer so as to avail herself to the utmost of known favourable winds, or to avoid currents that retarded her progress. Her course was nearly that of a full power paddle-wheel steamer, instead of being (as it ought to have been) nearly that of a regular sailing ship. Moreover she was not provided with the best fuel, some of her coal being so bad that it was thrown overboard as useless waste.

This ship, and her sisters, the Hellespont and Propontis, are exactly similar, in all respects; they are fitted with shifting or feathering screws; their builders' measurement is 536 tons, and their power nominally that of 80 horses, respectively.

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