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that their inhabitants, and in some fertility of the soil may serve to measure those of the shores of account for the extensive populathe surrounding continents also, tion of Java, compared with that were mariners by necessity. Water of the other islands; and, when, expeditions therefore were soon to the peaceable and domestic found most commodious for car- habits of an agricultural life, are rying off spoil. The Greeks, added the facilities for invasion moreover, in their more barba- along an extensive line of coast, rous state, became acquainted accessible in every direction, it with the precious metals; for, will not have been surprising that the Phænicians, whose industry, she should have fallen an easy ingenuity and adventurous spirit prey to the first invader. She of commerce led them early to appears to have lost, by these inexplore the further shores of the vasions, much of that martial Mediterranean, and even to risk spirit and adventurous enterprize the dangers of the ocean beyond, which distinguishes the populadiscovered mines of gold and tion of the other isles; but, at silver in some of the islands of the same time, to have retained, the Ægean; and, on its northern not only the primitive simplicity coast they formed establishments of her own peculiar usages, but in several of the islands, and all the virtues and advantages of Thasus, which lay convenient the more enlightened institutions for communication with the most which have been introduced at productive mines, became the seat different periods from a foreign of their principal factory. Thus
At all events, when we was offered the most powerful in- consider that her population cancentive to piracy, in a sea whose not be less than four millions, innumerable islands and ports and when we witness the chaafforded singular opportunity for racter and literature of the people the practice. Perhaps the con- as it is even now exhibited, we duct of the Phænicians, towards must believe that Java had once the uncivilized nations among attained a far higher degree of whom the desire of gain led civilization than any other nation them, was not always the most in the southern hemisphere. upright or humane; hostilities
JAPAN. would naturally ensue, and hence might first arise the estimation You will, however, expect from of piracy which long prevailed me some notice regarding Japan among the Greeks as an ho.
" that celebrated and imperial nourable practice.”
island," which, to use the words Java has long been advanced of Sir William Jones, bears“ a beyond that state in which piray pre-eminence among eastern kingand robbery are held to be ho- doms, analogous to that of Brinourable in the eyes of men ; but tain among the nations of the the picture will be found pretty west ;” and, however slender may correct of those islands strictly have been the information prodenominated Malayan.
cured, such as it is, I venture to The superior and extraordinary submit it to you, nearly as I reVol. LVIII.
ceived it from the verbal commu- nervous, vigorous people, whose nications of Dr. Ainslie.
bodily and inental powers assimiIt may be satisfactory and gra- late much nearer to those of Eutifying in the first place to ob- rope than what is attributed to serve, that every information Asiatics in general. Their feawhich has been obtained, tends to tures are masculine and perfectly confirm the accuracy, the ability, European, with the exception of and the impartiality of Kæmpfer, the small lengthened Tartar eye, whose account of Japan is per- which almost universally prevails, haps one of the best books of and is the only feature of resemthe kind that ever was written, blance between them and the considering the circumstances Chinese. The complexion is perunder which he was sent. I am fectly fair, and indeed blooming; assured that there is not a mis- the women of the higher classes representation throughout; he being equally fair with Europeans, was a man of minute accuracy and having the bloom of health and felicity of talent, who saw more generally prevalent among every thing as it was, and not them than usually found in Euthrough the mist or medium of rope. any preconception. The Japa- For a people who have had very nese observe of him, that he is, few, if any external aids, the Jain his History “the very apostle panese cannot but rank high in of their faith," from whose works the scale of civilization. The alone they know even their own traits of a vigorous mind are discountry. Their first enquiry was played in their proficiency in the for a copy of Kæmpfer ; and, en- sciences, and particularly in metadeavouring to evince the estima- physics and judicial astrology. tion in which this author was The arts they practise speak for held by them, their observation themselves, and are deservedly literally was, that "He had drawn acknowledged to be in a much out their heart from them, and higher degree of perfection than laid it palpitating before us, with among the Chinese, with whom all the movements of their go- they are by Europeans so frevernment, and the actions of their quently confounded; the latter men!"
have been stationary at least as Referring you therefore, to the long as we have known them, works of Kæmpfer for an account while the slightest impulse seems of their history, institutions, and sufficient to give a determination acquirements, as the genuine data to the Japanese character, which on which this interesting people would progressively improve until may be appreciated, I need only it attained the same height of cioffer a few notices on the cha- vilization with the European. racter which they appeared to Dr. Nothing indeed is so offensive to Ainslie to display, during a resi- the feelings of a Japanese as to dence of four months, and as far be compared in any one respect as he had an opportunity of with the Chinese, and the only judging
occasion on which Dr. Ainslie They are represented to be a saw the habitual politeness of a
Japanese ever surprized into a rent coldness, like the stillness of burst of passion was, when, upon the Spanish character, and dea similitude of the two nations rived nearly from the same causes, being unguardedly asserted, the that system of espionage, and that latter laid his hand upon his principle of disunion, dictated by sword!
the principles of both governThe people are said to have a ments; are represented to be strong inclination to foreign in- eager for novelty, and warm in tercourse, notwithstanding the their attachments; open to stranpolitical institutions to the con- gers, and, abating the restrictions trary; and perhaps the energy of their political institutions, a which characterizes the Japanese people who seem inclined to character cannot be better eluci- throw themselves into the hands dated, than by that extraordinary of any nation of superior intellidecision which excluded the world gence. They have at the same from their shores, and confined time a great contempt and disrewithin their own limits a people gard of every thing below their who had before served as merce- own standard of morals and hanaries throughout all Polynesia, bits, as instanced in the case of and traded with all nations the Chinese. themselves adventurous naviga- This may appear to be contrators.
dicted by the mission from Russia There is by no means that uni- in 1814, under Count Kreusenformity among them which is ob- stern ; but the circumstances unserved in China, where the im- der which that mission was placed pression of the government may should be considered. From the be said to have broken down all moment of their arrival they were individuality and left one Chinese under the influence of an excluthe counterpart of another. Un- sive factor, who continued to rain like the Chinese, the women here upon them every possible ignoare by no means secluded—they miny which can be supposed to associate among themselves, like have flowed from the despotism the ladies of Europe. During of Japan, through the medium of the residence of Dr. Ainslie, fre- an interested and avaricious man, quent invitations and entertain- who dreaded competition or the ments were given ; on these oc- publication of his secret. The casions, and at one in particular, warehouse in which the Russian a lady from the court of Jeddo mission had been lodged was is represented to have done the pointed out to Dr. Ainslie, who honours of the table with an ease, observes, that, as the rats were elegance, and address that would let out the Count and his suite have graced a Parisian. The were let in, where they remained usual dress of a Japanese woman for six long months, with scarce of middle rank costs perhaps as room to turn; the mark of obmuch as would supply the ward- loquy to the Japanese, and the robe of an European lady of the laughing stock of the European same rank for twenty years.
factory." So lively, indeed, was The Japanese, with an appa. the impression of the occurrence, "
2 M 2
that the chief Japanese officer you laugh at the benediction of a asked the English commissioner Pope; but the blessing of an old if he too would condescend to man can do you no harm;" and, play the part of the Russian so saying, laid his hand on his count !—the officer answering to head, and blessed him. his own question, “ No, I trust The massacre of Samebarra is not."
by the Japanese attributed to Eu. The mistaken idea of the illi- ropean intrigue; and even Kæmpberality of the Japanese in reli- fer notices that the European gious matters, seems to have been ships of war formed the practicable fully proved; and the late mission breach, through which the Japaexperienced the reverse in a de- nese entered, and perpetrated that gree hardly credible, and little massacre, to which it would apexpected by themselves from the pear they had been originally representations previously made prompted by others. to them. The story of the annual That the negotiations from test of trampling on the crucifix, England on a former occasion at Nanggasaki and the other im- should not have been more sucportant cities, is a story derided cessful than the late attempt from by the Japanese priesthood. On Russia, may easily be accounted visiting the great temple on the for, when we reflect on the pos. hills of Nanggasaki, the English sibility of the favoured factor commissioner was received with having said to them, Forty marked regard and respect by the years ago your throne had been venerable patriarch of the north- all but overturned by the intrigue ern provinces, eighty years of of these heretics ; this embassy age, who entertained him most comes from the king who has sumptuously. On showing him married the daughter of the head round the courts of the temple, of that caste; and from whom one of the English officers pre- you can expect nothing less than sent heedlessly exclaimed in sur- an irruption still more fatal to prize, Jasus Christus ! The patri- your tranquillity.” Such an ararch, turning half round, with a gument, pushed by a narrowplacid smile, bowed significantly minded and interested factor, expressive of “We know you are could not but carry weight with Jasus Christus; well, don't ob- the Japanese, accustomed to retrude him upon us in our tem- spect and to place all confidence ples and we remain friends;" and in their western visitors. so, with a hearty shake of the They are not averse to the inhands, these two opposites parted. dulgence of social excess ; and, This leave-taking reminded Dr. on these occasions, give a latitude Ainslie very forcibly of the story to their speech which one would Dr. Moore tells so well of the hardly suppose they dared to do Duke of Hamilton and himself, in Japan. taking leave of the Pope. The It is an extraordinary fact, that Pope, who had conceived a regard for seven years past, since the for the young Duke, on the latter visit of Captain Pellew, notwithmaking his congé said, “I know standing the determination of the empire not to enter into foreign geographical and statistical decommerce, the English language scription of the country. has, in obedience to an edict of In a word, the opinion of Dr. the Emperor, been cultivated with Ainslie is, that the Japanese are a considerable success by the younger people with whom the European members of the College of Inter- world might hold intercourse preters, who indeed were found without compromise of character. eager in their inquiries after Eng. For the Japanese themselves, they lish books.
are wonderfully inquisitive in all While the commissioner was points of science, and possess a at Nanggasaki, there arrived a mind curious and anxious to relarge detachment of officers of ceive information, without inquirrank, who had been out nearlying from what quarter it comes. four years and not yet completed In the same spirit let us hope, one-fourth of a survey on which that now, when they were engaged. These officers
That spell upon the minds of men were attended by a numerous and
Breaks, never to unite again, splendid retinue, and were employed in making an actual sur-. no withering policy may blast vey of every foot of the empire the fair fruits of that spirit of and the dependent isles. The research which has gone forth survey appeared to be conducted from this hall; nor continue, on a scientific principle, to be under any circumstances, to shut most minute and accurate in its out one half of the world from the execution and to have for its ob- intelligence which the other half ject the completion of a regular may possess.