« PoprzedniaDalej »
and its Tributaries,” is the following account of a slave party he met with in the valley of the Shiré :
“ The slave party, a long line of manacled men, women, and children, came wending their way round the hill and into the valley, on the side of which the village stood. The black drivers, armed with muskets, and bedecked with various articles of finery, marched jauntily in the front, middle, and rear of the line, some of them blowing exulting notes out of long tin horns. They seemed to feel that they were doing a very noble thing, and might proudly march with an air of triumph. But the instant the fellows caught a glimpse of the English, they darted off like mad into the forest ; so fast, indeed, that we caught but a glimpse of their red caps and the soles of their feet. The chief of the party alone remained, and he, from being in front, had his hand tightly grasped by a Makololo! He proved to be a well known slave of the late commandant at Tette, and for some time our own attendant while there. On asking him how he obtained these captives, he replied he had bought them; but on our enquiring of the people themselves, all save four said they had been captured in war. While this inquiry was going on, he bolted too.
“The captives knelt down, and, in their way of expressing thanks, clapped their hands with great energy. They were thus left entirely in our hands, and knives were soon busy at work cutting the women and children loose. It was more difficult to cut the men adrift, as each had his neck in the fork of a stout stick, six or seven feet long, and kept in by an iron rod which was riveted at both ends across the throat. With a saw, luckily in the Bishop's baggage, one by one the men were sawn out into freedom. The women, on being told to take the meal they were carrying, and cook breakfast for themselves and the children, seemed to consider the news too good to be true; but, after a little coaxing, went at it with alacrity, and made a capital fire by which to boil their pots, with the slave sticks and bonds, their old acquaintances through many a sad night and weary day. Many were mere children, about five years of age and under. One little boy, with the simplicity of childhood, said to our men, The others tied and starved us, you cut the ropes and tell us to eat. What sort of people are you? Where did you come from ?' Two of the women had been shot the day before, for attempting to untie the thongs. This, the rest were told, was to prevent them attempting to escape. One woman had her infant's brains knocked out, because she could not carry her load and it; and a man was despatched with an axe, because he had broken down with fatigue.”
Our next witness is Reuten, one of the party of eight Sepoys sent from Bombay with Dr. Livingstone, who, overcome with terror, deserted the traveller in the interior, and joined themselves to the slave gang of one Suleiman, an Arab chief. After accompanying them to the coast, the Sepoys found their way to Zanzibar, and the following is the deposition of the Sepoy, made to Mr. Seward, the British Consul there. He says :
“We left Mataka with the slave-caravan of one Suleiman, an Arab. His band numbered 300 slaves, besides porters and servants, but there were many other smaller bands varying in number; altogether there started about 900. It seemed one great regiment.
“ The slaves were yoked together in line, with forked sticks, their hands bound; women and children were simply bound.*
“We set out at daylight, and pitched camp at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon.
“ The slaves were compelled to sleep either in rows, head to head, under a central bar, to which the ends of their forked sticks were lashed; or they were arranged in groups of from five to ten, in such a manner that their sticks could all be brought together in the middle of the group and lashed.
“ They had to sleep upon their backs, their wrists bound before them, helpless and unable to move.
“ They were fed once a day with boiled jowarree and water.
“ They were cheap: an adult cost two yards of common cotton cloth, a child one yard.
“They were urged forward on the march like cattle, beaten about the face and head. We witnessed many murders—many deaths; and the path was strewn with the bodies of those who had been killed.
“ When we passed up with Dr. Livingstone, the road stank with the way-side corpses; it was so again when we passed down.
“Every day we came upon the dead, and certainly we witnessed not less than a hundred deaths.
“Men were either killed by the club, or the dagger, or strangled.
“I with my own eyes (Reuten says) saw six men (at different times) choked to death: the victims were forced to sit leaning against a tree; a strip of bark or a thong was looped around the stem of the tree, pulled taut from behind, and the slave strangled.
“I saw not less than fifteen slaves clubbed to death by heavy blows between the eyes (which bespattered their faces with blood) or upon the head.
“Children were felled in this way, and put out of life by repeated blows on the head.
“I have seen a porter in mercy carry a sick slave, t but some who were so thin and worn that they could not walk, and whose death was certain, were tossed aside into the bush.
“ Others who had been so mercilessly beaten that but little life remained in them, were unyoked, and with a kick and an oath thrown aside to take their chances in the wilderness.
“An infant, not long born, was torn from its mother's breast, and pitched screaming into the bush. She was dragged relentlessly along.
“These things were done by the servants of the Arab owners, but always by the Arab's order. One Arab was very cruel. We saw his cruel nature in his face.
* “2446 slaves have reached Zanzibar since the 11th of October, date of Sepoy's arrival : it is now the 24th of October."-See Cover of Livingstone's Book,
† N.B.--Possibly one of some promise as a speculation.
“ The large and valuable tasks were not carried by the slaves, they were borne along by porters or servants of the Arabs; the small tusks, so light that they could easily be carried in one hand, were carried by a few, not all, of the slaves."
“ The Naigue of the Sepoys gave much the same account as Reuten, but he declares to more numerous murders. In addition to the club and the noose, he saw the dagger used to despatch victims who either could not or would not move along with the caravan.”
“ These atrocities,” says Mr. Seward, “occurred after the gang began their march: but what of the crimes that waited upon their original capture ?”
We have now accompanied the "merchandize” to the coast. We may think the worst is over. Many gangs, no doubt, are taken at once to Quiloa, and there sold; but many also have to await a favourable chance for shipment, so as to elude the Zanzibar market, and be smuggled off at once to their destination; and for these poor wretches are reserved the horrors of the slave barracoon. Again we have an eye-witness to relate to us details of the sickening scene. Monsieur Ménon, of the island of Réunion, who was formerly engaged in promoting what he calls African Emigration to the French co lonies, describes the following scene on the river Lindie, on the Eastern coast:
“An Arab chief told us he had, in the forest at some leagues' distance, a depôt of 800 men, whom he would bring to us the next day. I asked the chief to conduct us to his depôt, and at first he stubbornly refused. But when I promised him a rifle musket, which he eagerly desired to get, he consented and led us thither. After three hours' march we arrived, but could see nothing. Where are they lodged ?' we asked ; and he pointed to a palisade of bamboo, open to the sky, where they were exposed, at the worst season of the year, to a fiery sun, alternating with torrents of rain and sometimes of hail, without any roof to cover them.
“A man of tall stature, with his spear in his hand and a poignard in his belt, pulled up three posts which served for a gate to this enclosure, and we entered. There they were, naked as in the day of their birth; some of them with a long fork attached to their neck —that is, a heavy branch of a tree (une grossière branche d'arbre) of fork-like shape--so arranged that it was impossible for them to step forward, the heavy handle of the fork, which they could not lift, effectually preventing them from advancing, because of the pressure on the throat; others were chained together in parcels (paquets) of twenty. The word which I underline is a trivial one, but it exactly expresses the idea. The keeper of this den utters a hoarse cry (pousse un rugissement); it is the order for the merchandize to stand up; but many of them do not obey. What is the matter? Our interpreter, who has gone among the groups, will tell us : listen
to him. “The chains are too short; the dead and the dying prevent the living from rising. The dead can say Dotzing: bat what do the dring sas? They say that they are doing-of langer.
- But let us leave the consideration of this trader's picture as a whole; and let us look at some of the detais. Who is this creature who holds tightly in her arms a shapeless obiect covered with filthy leaves ? On looking close, you see that it is a woman, hing in the mud, and holding to her dried up breast the child of which she has just been delivered. And those little girls who letter as they strive to rise, and who seem to ask for pity, on what are they leaning? On a dead body! And this man who is working with his hands a piece of mud, which he is continually placing on his ere, what is the matter with himn ? Our guide tells us, 'He is a troublesome fellow, who set a bad example by throwing himself at my feet this morning, and saying with a loud voice, I am dying of hanger; and I gave him a blow which barst his eye; he is henceforth good for nothing;' and he added with a sinister look, 'He won't be hungry long.'
To the question addressed to the Arab chief, why he dealt thus with the men, his reply was, “I do as my father did before me."
(To be concluded in our next.)
Christ and the Controversies of Christendom. By R. W. Dale,
M.A., Author of Week-Day Sermons, 8c. London : Hodiler and Stoughton. 1869.
It is under this title that the address delivered by Mr. Dale, from the chair of the Congregational Union of England and Wales, at their annual meeting, has been published, and we have no hesitation in expressing our opinion that it deserves, and will amply repay, a careful perusal. Mr. Dale begins his Lecture with a general survey of the existing condition of Christendom, and of the perplexing problems involved in the relations of the Church to the political organization of society. We do not think that he has at all over-rated the magnitude of the crisis in the religious life of mankind, which he represents as now impending over Christendom at large, and over our own country in particular, or that he has in any wise misrepresented the real issue of the contest, when he describes it as being reduced to the single enquiry, “Is Christendom to believe in Christ, or no?" Having briefly reviewed, in search of an answer to the question, « What are we to do?" the endless
one absoale proceedubled and ng Christ, sed, but for
variety, and the intricate perplexity of the various theories and controversies which are rife in the world and in the Church ; having observed that life is too short for their investigation, and that even if Christian ministers generally were equal to their discussion, their congregations would lack both ability and disposition to listen to them, Mr. Dale continues thus :-"Again therefore, I ask, “What are we to do ?' It appears to me that our true course is plain and direct. We have one duty to discharge, which includes all others. We have no new Gospel to preach; we must preach the old Gospel still, and preach it to all men. Christ is the Prince, and Christ is the Saviour of the human race. That is just as true to day as it ever was. It is not for us to rescue either individual men or nations from the doubt, from the misery, from the confusion, or from the sin by which they are distracted and oppressed, but for Christ. I want to show that by preaching Christ, we shall best discharge our duty to this troubled and restless age.” (p. 10.)
Mr. Dale proceeds to observe that it is in dealing with this one absorbing theme, and with this only, that Christ's minis, ters need entertain no fear of wearying those whom they address. The world, he writes, “ wearies of everything else, but it never wearies of Christ;" and he ascribes to this cause, more than to all the force of genius, and beauty, and originality, which are displayed in them, the wondrous success of those two publications-different, as they are, in all besides the identity of their subject-the “Life of Jesus,” by Renan, and the “Ecce Homo,” Mr. Dale proceeds to show how this one remedy for the ills and divisions of the Church needs to be applied specially, at the present day, to the prevailing errors of scepticism and of Romanism. With reference to the latter of these two forms of error, he writes thus:--"And the Romish theory of the priesthood, and the Sacraments will be destroyed, not by argument, but by Christ. If logic could have destroyed it, it would have perished centuries ago. It has its roots in a region of our nature into which logic cannot penetrate. Give men the alternative of obtaining forgiveness by believing in a creed, or by confessing to a priest, and there are vast numbers who, without hesitation, will turn to the priest. The priest stands before them as the personal representative of Christ; it is far more natural to trust in the priest than to trust in a set of theological propositions. Give them the alternative of securing salvation through a doctrine or through a sacrament, and they will cling to the sacrament. In the Eucharist, they are assured that Christ is personally present; they feel far more certain of securing eternal life by receiving Christ Himself, than by receiving a doctrine about Him." (pp. 25, 26.) And again, with reference to the real strength of the theory of TransubVol. 68.-No. 382.