Imágenes de páginas

Father), with a sublime demureness of expression, as one who would say, "Let me at least render honour where honour is due." Hardly, however, have I gone twenty yards farther when he he changes his tune, and (I thought it was coming) raises a tentative cry of "Foreign Devil!" and waits to see the result, like a nervous rider striking a strange horse. Encouraged by his impunity, others take up the cry, and in a few minutes a crowd of little imps are dancing along behind me, albeit at a respectful distance, to a chorus of "Fan Kwi, 'E! Fan Kwi, A ah!" It is impossible to be angry with them, they are so intensely happy. Their faces simply dance with pleasure; while their clattering wooden shoes, their little loose breeches and flapping sleeves, all seem electrified into an ecstasy of merriment. Even the red tags of incipient pigtails bob up and down, as if they too must get a peep at this extraordinary phenomenon. At last we find refuge in our inn.

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You may know it is an inn, because there is absolutely nothing to buy in it. The landlord greets me with a "Good day, boss!" and insists on shaking hands, such lore of barbarian customs has he acquired during a ten years' stay in the Gold Mountains. Has he tea or rice? No, he has nothing; but he can buy. So we pass through the dirty shop, and dirtier passage, into a kitchen in possession of a weak-backed sow. At the farther end is a straw loft or platform, raised six or seven feet above the ground. Gaining this coign of vantage, I appeal to mine host to clear the house of the crowd that has followed me. He courteously goes so far as to swear lustily at large, but without result. A Chinaman's house em

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phatically is not his castle. The public considers a wandering foreigner as public property, and would deeply resent any attempt at monopolising him. Being thus thrown on my own resources to quiet the hubbub, I resort to strategy. Pulling out my telescope, I direct it on the crowd below, and, in the lull caused by this manœuvre, seize the opportunity of observing that, if there is any more noise or pulling about of my things, I shall decline all intercourse with this people. This produces an excellent effect. There is a general chorus of "Hush, hush! Pulling his things about! A reverend stranger, too! . . Such bad manners! and comparative quiet reigns, of which I take advantage, and try to reply categorically to the spitting fire of questions. Some one well up in theology first puts me through my facings. No; I am neither a Soul's Father (Catholic) nor a Guardian Master (Lutheran); neither a Frenchman nor a German. "What are you, then?" I reply, with much dignity, that my nation is the nation of Great Yin (of which most of them have heard), and that I am a mandarin in a foreign land (I translate the word magistrate, and if they are filled with an exaggerated sense of my importance, that is not my fault). I cannot say I find their country very good, for the Hundred Surnames (the masses) lack reverence. Having thus exalted my office, I proceed to explain that my stockings are made of sheep's wool, and even condescend to let them be felt, legs dangling, a second Tappertit. I have not come to teach them religion; I am not a grandfather, though I have a beard; I am not in the least afraid, thank you; I have a surname; I cannot see as far as

below the surface of the

I am released from this by the arrival of my I eat à la Chinoise, p, using the chop-sticks or beak-wise to extract salmon from its tin. as it may seem to good o live at home at ease, d of feeding is adopted f those whom fate has Fe off the beaten track owery Kingdom-that lining in public. ring and bursts of conlaughter are quite ruin a man's digestion, e addition of such com"Look at his fork all n!" 'No, it's silver." e's spiked a bit of his --cow-meat!" "He'll Ongue." "So curious!"


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d beast being satisfied, t again, escorted by the s far as the gates, on atches of sugar - cane, roduce, and tobacco. es more barley, varied ls by brown hillocks th graves, where goats e browse unmolested. the graves of the com. In choosing a favouror a grave, where the f wind and water shall ous, lies much virtue. there you may see one ombs, set like a white ne lofty mountain-spur y spot where the geos discovered a curving ack, in conjunction with Tiger, among the surills; or a view of windsuch as will comfort the he dead, and win his on behalf of his pious S. But this is a great Our Hakka peasants canrule, afford such luxuri

ous insurance, and have to content themselves with faith and what hillock of waste land may belong to their clan. A stone tablet set in an arch of masonry, and let into the slope of the rising ground, marks the resting-place and tells the name of the deceased; while the approach thereto is enclosed by a low stone wall of horse-shoe shape. But, lofty or humble, the grave of his ancestors is of the essence of a Hakka's religion. It is hard for a stranger to appreciate the depth of his feeling for it. You may sneer at Confucius and laugh at the Buddhist priesthood; but do not try with a lightning-conductor or weather-cock to divert the luck of a graveyard, or there will be trouble.

By good fortune we come on a party paying their annual visit of respect at one of these graves. It is a pretty sight, and one worth stopping for. Nor need we fear to intrude. By the token that your Hakka does not hesitate to invade your room at an inn, you may understand that European notions of privacy are foreign to him. A Tsi Fun, or Sacrificing at the Tomb, is perhaps the nearest Chinese equivalent to a picnic. From early day all the male descendants of the departed have been assembled at his sepulchre, from the white-haired grandfather (soon himself to be an object of worship) to the children playing knucklebones with the shells of exploded crackers. All the morning they have been cooking the cakes and sweetmeats laid out on the cement threshold before the tablet; and now kneeling one by one in their long blue gowns of ceremony, they give each other and taste the wine-cup, bowing, bowing before the grave till their foreheads touch the ground, amid discordant too-tooing of horns and popping of bombs. They pray for

health, wealth, long life, and male issue, the good souls, much as other people use. Let us recognise the touch of nature and bid them a hearty farewell, leaving the cheap sneer to professional iconoclasts.


A picture of Chinese scenery must have its pagoda. Without which none other are genuine, as the advertisements say. So it is worth while to leave the path and scramble up a hill in pursuit of one, even at the end of a day's march. It is the traveller's duty to carry sextant and yard measure in his pocket; so let me record that this pagoda of mine is an octagonal seven-storeyed tower of stone, a hundred feet high, with walls twelve feet thick, into which a winding staircase is built. There is, however, nothing to be seen in any of the storeys after the first The others have been left unfurnished, and the ship is spoilt for the want of a penn'orth of tar. The ground-floor is an octagonal room sixteen or eighteen feet in diameter. Opposite the door there is an altar or throne on which the effigy of a former emperor sits, fatuously smiling through a thin black beard, flanked by attendant ministers, in the midst of a mass of tawdry paper ornaments, dusty lanterns, tinsel, and flummery. Before this altar obeisance is made and incense burned by devotees. Human patience has its limits; sympathy the most cosmopolitan can hardly find interest in such nonsense. The occupant of the second floor is a small individual with squint eyes, a ghastly harelip, and a swollen lolling tongue. He is known to fame as having been so hideous that, though his essays were on two occasions far the best sent up, the examiners declared he was really too ugly to qualify. However, the third time they had to give way, and

he passed triumphantly. At his death he was canonised, and is now worshipped by students. The sculptor has gilded his homely features, perhaps to typify his merits; and impelled by a mistrust (quite uncalled for) in his ability to devise a sufficient atrocity of countenance, has accentuated the effect by representing the demi-god as standing with one knee pressed into the pit of his stomach, while he fiercely brandishes a pen rather bigger than himself. But these are mere superfluities. The object of the pagoda is engraved on the slab of marble, which, fallen from its niche in the wall, lies among briers and rubble at its foot. It seems to have been built A.D. 1800, at a cost of 10,000 dollars, to retain the luck of the neighbourhood, but more especially to preserve those who travel by land and by water in the Barbarous Outland. If our good miners in the Perak Tin Hills can remember the old country, as the tea-house showed, it seems that they in turn are not forgotten.

But now night is falling, and brings a cold rain with it. As we plod stiffly over the last mile, the fields have become deserted, save where two enthusiasts, man and wife, are still wading in a padi - nursery sowing the rice. Covered back and front with rainproof coats of palm-leaf, with legs bare from the thigh downward, and red with cold, they look like some unwieldy species of waders

or cranes.

But at last our inn! I have asked but a small boon from the Fates, that it shall not prove to be market-day, and my prayer is heard. Rice is to be had for man, and bean-stalks for beast. And so gladly to supper and to bed.



THE brilliance of the intellectual Renaissance in Italy, the potency of its effect upon the philosophy, literature, and art of Western Europe, and the renown attained by the foremost men at all stages of the movement, have blinded us to the eminence of thinkers and writers who lived before the close of the middle ages. Apart from and besides the imperfection of such records as remain, the attention of succeeding generations has been diverted from the silent labour of earlier students by the intense and sudden vitality awakened in those of the fifteenth century. Just as, standing before a great conflagration on a dark night, the spectator beholds none of the objects in the landscape immediately beyond the blaze, so in order to view the operations carried on in the civilised world during the thirteenth century, one must pass to one side of the centre of action, and disregard, for the moment, the stir and tumult in the foreground. And even then, in estimating the proportions and nature of the different figures disclosed, allowance must be made for the glare reflected on them from the nearer flames.

It was the age of princes and of priests. Military force and ecclesiastical power alternately strove for mastery and allied themselves for rule. The titles of kings and cardinals of that time are associated with great works of art, while of those who wrought them, even the names have perished. No one who has traced the development of Gothic architecture from the sturdy Saxon translation of Roman building through the masculine beauty of the Norman, down to


its consummation in the honest splendour of the thirteenth century, can fail in the conviction that great intellects were untiringly at work during all the rigours and perils of these four hundred years -nay, that in the matter of noble building, neither in this country nor in Germany or France have their equals since been seen. The most ambitious efforts of modern architects are no more than copies of the old masterpieces.

Take the most complete expression of the intellectual energy of the thirteenth century which we possess, the only great building designed and completed during the noontide of Gothic art and unaltered since, the Cathedral of Salisbury, and you may read that it was founded by Bishop Poore in 1220, that the cloisters and chapterhouse were built forty years later by Bishop de la Wyle, and that the tower and matchless spire were completed by Bishop Wyville, more than a hundred years after the foundations were laid. But you shall learn nothing about the minds that conceived, or the hands that carried out, the noble designs: only the bare names of these perfect workers may here and there survive in the account - books of the Chapter. Nevertheless, their works remain, testifying that men thought and wrought mightily before the revival of learning.

The coincidence that Roger Bacon bore, in a time before surnames had come into general use, the same surname that was to be carried to fame four centuries later by "the wisest, brightest, meanest of mankind," has cast into deeper eclipse the reputation of one of the most penetrating thinkers who

have from time to time revolted against false teaching and unsound systems of science. Hardly for every hundred persons who have a general idea of the life and works of Francis Bacon of Verulam shall one be found who could give an outline of those of Roger Bacon the Franciscan. Yet with the fruit of four additional centuries of learning and civilisation at his command, the secret of the later Bacon's philosophy was none other than the earlier Bacon had imparted to ears that would not hear that the road to knowledge lay, not through scholastic argument and self-confident routine, but by way of cautious induction and patient experiment.


There exists one other hindrance to popular familiarity with Roger Bacon's teaching, inasmuch there hangs over his writings the veil of a dead language. A very small part of them have been translated out of the original Latin, nor is there, indeed, any pressing reason for undertaking this at the present day. It is pathetically interesting to follow the workings of a powerful mind tearing at the trammels woven by generations of mysticism and scholasticism, and sympathy is deeply stirred for the dauntless spirit suffering persecution at the hands of prejudice and vanity; but the battle has since been fought and won, the truths contended for are now so unquestionable, the knowledge so painfully strained at has been brought within such easy reach of all who care to possess it, that, except as a study of faithful human endeavour, these writings are not now of great profit to the general reader.

But it is otherwise with the

author of them. It is well worth calling to mind the earnestness, patience, and courage of the humble Franciscan friar.

M. Emile Charles, who has written by far the best monograph extant on Roger Bacon,1 complains of the conspiracy of silence which wrapped his memory for more than two hundred years after his death. When in the sixteenth century human intelligence was pouring through channels reopened by the Renaissance, men became aware that a prophet had been allowed to pass away without honour, and John Leyland set himself to collect the scattered remains of Bacon's writings. But there was no remembrance of the philosopher's life, nor hardly any written record, save fragments of narrative and disconnected allusions in his own works, slender materials out of which to compile a biography. Anthony Wood says he was born a younger son of a good family near Ilchester in Somerset; there is evidence under his own hand to show that this must have been about the year 1214. Early in his teens, perhaps in the year 1228, he went to study at Oxford, where he came immediately under the influence of a learned namesake, Robert Bacon, probably a near relative of his own. It was in the company of this individual that Roger first flashed into public notice. Matthew Paris records how Henry III., then at the beginning of his political troubles, visited Oxford in 1233, in order to meet his malcontent barons. Robert Bacon, having been appointed to preach before the king, had an interview with Henry after the sermon, and told him roundly that there was no chance of peace

1 Roger Bacon, sa vie, ses ouvrages, ses doctrines. Par Emile Charles. Paris,


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