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peat as equally applicable to every other goverument. It should not meddle too often with the affairs of the resident merchants. They have been accustomed to an odd mixture of constraint aud liberty, and would not willingly hare the one taken from them and the other left. But above all, it should ever keep in view, that Great Britain 'can gain nothing, even by ruling China, beyond free commercial intercourse.' If these be the true interests of the British nation, the Cominission will be inost careful never to overleap them. Remembering that it is not new territory that is wanting, but new fields for industry, it will not. awaken the jealousy of other states, by seeking exclusive privileges, nor renew even in distant causation, the series of usurpation which make up the history of European conmerce with the East.'
That the Merchant does not mean to forbid “the resort to force, in extorting concession from the government of China,” under all circumstances and without any exceptious, is further evident froin the fact that he approves of the late voyages along the coast.
We do not mean to insinuate that, in the prosecution of those voyages, there has been an unlawful resort to force. But how have those en. terprises been conducted ? Were not the Lord Amherst and the Sylph well manned and armed? And wherever they went, were not the local authorities set at defiance? How did the voyagers gain admittance to the taoutae's great hall of justice in the city of Shanghae? And what was the result of all this experience ? Compliance begets insolence; opposition and defiance produce civility and friendly profession." Suppose now, (what we have reason to fear will soon take place,) that ships, 'well manned and armed,' but without able interpreters, and not under the command of the most humane officers, find their way into the northern ports; and that collision takes place, homicides occur, and innocent persons are seized by the Chinese authorities; what will be the consequences? If we were sure that foreigners, thus coming in contact with the Chinese, would always act justly, we should have less fear as to the results of voyages and collisions; and should not be so desirous that a well regulated intercourse should be immediately substituted for the present system of sinuggling, carried on in defiance of the Chinese
We have only one more topic to notice, and then we will lay aside the pamphlet before us. “ After having disclaimed for the American government,” says the Merchant,
any part in the affairs of E:stern Asia, we must be allowed to reserve to the American people, the right of coöperating there, in every laudable enterprise, with the people of Great Britain.” Again be says: “So far as improvement with China is to be effected by the influence of any government, its accomplishment rests with the government of these [the British) islands. The other nations of Europe, Russia excepted, have little or no intercourse with that empire. And nature has interposed justiperable barriers between Russia and China, in the shape of lofty mountains and vast deserts. The American merchants may be
thought formidable as commercial competitors; but the government of the United States is strictly principled to domestic policy. Its measures will soon be decided, all of them, on the banks of the Mississippi.” And yet again: "We turn now with pleasure to the wide fields of the eastern commerce, as those from which England may derive new means of real and relative greatness. We ask her to take for hersell, the first fruits and the best fruits, but to leave to the merchants of other nations, some gleanings of the abundant harvest." But why invite England '10 take, for herself, the first fruits and the best fruits,' from the wide fields of eastern commerce?
And why disclaim, 'for the American government,' any part in the affairs of Eastern Asia ? Let those who can, answer these questions.
We turn now to the brief notice of China, given by the “ author of Polynesian Researches," as an introductory essay to the journals of Mr. Gutzlaff. As a whole, the notice is well executed ; and exceedingly well fitted for an introduction to the Journals. There are two points in it, however, which are not very strictly accurate ; one of which elevates the Chinese above, the other sinks thein below, their proper rank.
“As a nation," he says, " unacquainted with those models of benevolence and kindness which the Bible presents, and those motives of peace on earth aud grod-will among men which it implies in the heart, they exhibit an urbanity of manners and a courtesy of behavior, highly commendable; and in some respects, a degree of refinement and civilization, beyond what has been attained by the most intelligent and powerful nations of the earth." Again : “ According to Nieuhoff and Kircher, quoted by Mr. Fisher in the 'Gentleman's Magazine,'—who states that the Chinese have evidently been for centuries in advance of the nations oi' Europe,-education is more general, and in some respects, better conducted in China than it was when the account was written , or is not in any other country." And again, speaking of the system of public literary examinations, he says : “ This has created such a general competition for literary distinction, thal the public reading of essays, prepared for this purpose by those by whom they are read, is an exhibition of almost constant occurrence, and takes place at least troice in every month in all the principal towns of China."
In what respects the 'refinement,' 'civilization, and education, of the Chinese are beyond what has been attained by any other nation, we are utterly unable to conjecture. The only public reading of essays in China, of which we have any knowledge, ooght indeed, according to the laws, to take place "twice every month in the principal towns;" but at present it is wholly neglected, except in the 'provincial cities,' or capital of each of the provinces. Besides, the 'essays' read on those occasions are not prepared by those who read them; but are selections froin the 'Sacred Edict,' a part of which was written by the emperor Kanghe, a part by his son Yungching, and a part by a 'salt inandarin' of Shelise. Nor, even in the provincial
cities do the people often attend “this political proaching of the mandarins.” Such was the opinion expressed not long ago by the late Dr. Morrison; and we know it to be correct. And so too his opinion on education, as quoted by Mr. Ellis, that not more than one half of the community is able to read,” we believe to be correct; and the counter opinion, that even now,' education is more general, and, in some respects, better conducted in China than in any other country, we believe is very erroneous.
Infanticide is the other and last topic, which we have now to notice. “This practice is carried to such an extent, that it may almost be said to be patronized by the government, which does not interfere to prevent it, and therefore may be said to give it countenance. It is, according to Barrow, tacitly considered a part of the duty of the police of Peking, to employ certain persons to go their rounds at an early hour in the morning with carts, in order to pick up the bodies of such infants as may have been thrown out into the streets in the course of the night. No inquiries are made; but the bodies are carried in a common pit without the city walls, into which all those that are living, as well those that are dead, are said to be thrown premiscuously. The Roman Catholic missionaries attended at the pit daily, for the purpose of rescuing some of the victims, and brioging then up in the Christian faith. Mr. Birrow observes, that those of the missionaries with whoin he had daily conversation during a residence of five weeks within the einperor's palace, assured hiin that the scenes sometimes exhibited were such as to make the feeling mind shudder with horror. Dogs and swine are let loose into the streets of the capital at an early hour, before the carts go round.” Barrow gives the average number of deaths as about twenty-four daily, or nearly nine thousand for the capital annually, aud supposes an equal number are thus destroyed in other parts of the empire. This number is reduced by the fact, “that in Peking, infants who have died or are still-horn, are exposed," to avoid the expense of burying them. This, Mr. Birrow"
supposes may reduce the number of murdered infants to four thousand in the capital.” We have made many inquiries with a view to learn the truth relative to this statement; but cannot ascertain that the crime is more prevalent in the capital than it is in the other great cities of the empire. Froni the situation and character of the people in Canton, there is reason to suppose that infanticide must be as frequent here, according to the oumber of inhabitants, as in Peking. But in this city such exposures are very rarely seen. We will never knowingly conceal aught of the cruelties and sufferings of the Chinese ; but until we have better evidence than that adduced by Mr. Birrow, and quoted without contradiction in the book before its, we cannot believe that dead infants are carried out of Peking in cart loads daily; or that dogs and swine are let loose in the streets in the morning (to devour them), before the police carts go around !
ART. III. Negotiations with China : relative rights and duties
among nations not acknowledged by the Chinese ; tvils of the present state of intercourse ; duty and interest of the western nutions with regard to China ; remarks on the course the Bri
tish and other nations ought to pursue. DURING the long period which has elapsed since an intercourse was commenced between Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, France, England, and other nations of the West on one side, and the Chinese on the other, negotiations, becoming the character of great and independent nations, seem never to have been undertaken. Numerous envoys, legates, ambassadors, &c., have been sent from Europe to the court of China. They have been fitted out at great expense, and have usually been men of great abilities : but they have always been considered by the Chinese as kung sze, 'tribute bearers ;' have frequently been treated with neglect aud indiguity; and after all have effected little or nothing for the benefit of those who sent them, or for the world. Two or three of these missions will afford us a tolerably correct idea of the whole.
lu 1655, a Dutch embassy was sent from Batavia to the 'great khân? Peter de Goyer and Jacob de Keyser, merchants,' were chosen for that purpose. Their train consisted of fourteen persons; viz. two merchants, six writers, a steward, a surgeon), two interpreters, a: 'trumpeter,' and a 'drumnier.' They took with them also two other merchants, to take care of the traffic at Canton, while they were gone to Peking. Their presents,' i. e. kung muh, or 'tribute,' consisted of several rich pieces of woollen cloth, fiue linen, several sorts of spices, coral, little boxes of wax, perspective and lookingglasses, swords, guns, feathers, armor, &c. The object of their mission was to establish a 'firm league' with the emperor, and obtain a 'free trade' for the Dutch throughout his dominions. Having arrived safely at Canton, after some months' delay and severe extortions here, they were graciously permitted to go up to Peking; but were not admitted to the emperor's presence till they had perfornied the niue prostrations before the dragon throne.' At length, they were adınitted to the palace, where they waited all night in an open court, in expectation of seeing His Majesty early the next day. In the morning, the Emperor niounted the throne, and after sitting in state for a quarter of an hour,' the ambassadors were ordered to withdraw from his presence, without his having spoken to them a word. They were then presented with some gifts of silver damask,''cloth of gold,' &c., and forthwith ordered to repair to the Court of Ceremonies to receive the emperor's letter to the Governor-general of Batavia. This ceremony was performed in great silence, and throughout the whole no mention was made of ‘ Dutch negotiations.'
The Emperor's letter was as follows: “The king sends this letter tu John Maatzuiker, the Dutch Governor-general of Batavia. Our
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territories being as far asunder as the east is from the west, it is with great difficulty that we can approach each other, and from the beginning to this present, the flollanders never came to visit us. But those who sent Peter de Goyer and Jacob de Keyser to me are a brave and wise people, who in your name have appeared before me, and brought me several presents. Your country is ten thousand miles distant from mine, but you show your noble mind in remeinbering me; for this reason my heart doth very much incline to you ; -therefore I send to you—[here the gifts are enumerated] You have asked leave to come to trade in my country by importing and exporting commodities, which will redound very much to the advantage of my subjects; but as your country is so far distant, and the winds on these coasts so boisterous as to endanger your ships, the loss of which would very much trouble me; therefore if you do think fit to send hither, I desire it may be but once every eight years, and no more than an hundred men in a company, twenty of whom may come up to the place where I keep my court, and then you may bring your merchandise ashore into your lodge, without bartering it at sea before Canton. This I have thought good to propose for your interest and safety, and I hope it will be well liked of by you; and thus much I thought fit to inake known to you."
The ambassadors having completed their 'negotiations' at the court, came back to Canton, where they were obliged to submit to fresh extortions from the local officers, were insulted by the populace, and one of their interpreters was murdered. After a remonstrance from the ambassadors, the following ultimate decree' was published by the emperor : “To the kingdom of Holland, health and peace, which out of its cordial love to justice has subjected itself to us, and has sent ambassadors through the wide sea to pay us tribute; we, nevertheless, weighing in our mind the length of the voyage, with the dangers incident thereto, do heartily grant them leave to como once every eight years to pay their tribute to this court; and this we do to make known to the universe our affection to the people of the remotest parts." Noways dispirited by their ill success in ' negotiations at Peking, and by their expulsion from Formosa in 1662, a
magnificent embassy' was dispatched to the emperor Kanghe, in 1664. The lord Peter van Hoorn, privy counselor and chief treasurer of Indii, was chosen ambassador. His suite consisted of a chief counselor of the embassy, a factor, and master of the ceremonies, a secretary, a steward, six gentlemen, a surgeon, six men for a guard, two trumpeters, and one cook. 'The reception of this splendid enibassy,' and the forms observed in the negotiations with the Chinese ministers, were nearly the same as those already described ; nor was their success any better. -Mr. Auber, from whom we quote these particulars, remarks that the lords of the council at Peking asked Goyer and Keyser if they were allied to their prince, for that no foreign anıbassadors could be admitted to an audience, if not akin to the prince who sent them: This difficulty, however, was easily 'surmounted.'