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and very young. Time was when we had many children ; but we had the pain of seeing them fall by the spear, the devouring flame, and the ravages of hunger. Our elder children, therefore, are no more ; but those born since our arrival here must be educated : they are a new generation ; let them be taught those things now proposed.'"
Chaka was one of the most cruel and despotic Chiefs that ever attained to dominion in South Africa. He could bring into the field about fifteen thousand warriors. Among his own people his word was law, and the terror of his name caused him to be obeyed. He would condemn hundreds to execution out of mere caprice ; and his orders would be faithfully fulfilled. “ The misery inflicted by the wars of this barbarian upon the Kaffir and Bechuana tribes,” says Mr. Thompson, “is incalculable, and is far from being confined to the massacre and destruction directly occasioned by his arms. By plundering and driving out the adjoining nations, he has forced them to become plunderers in their turn, and to carry terror and devastation through the remotest quarters of South Africa.”* It is seldom that the despot dies a natural death. Chaka was assassinated by his younger brother, Dingaan, who, on assuming the Chieftainship, became equally tyrannical, and, in his turn, met with a similar fate; when Panda, the present Chief of the Zulus, rose to power. Who can describe the miseries of Africa? In a state of hostility one with another, have the Hottentot, Kaffir, and Bechuana tribes been living, perhaps for ages ; nor can any conception be formed of the amount of wretchedness which their wars with each other have originated. The pen of the historian has not chronicled one-tenth of the calamities of war in Southern Africa. Could they be related, they would form a narrative even more appalling than those of some of the most deadly national conflicts of ancient or of modern times : for, of all wars, those of savage tribes are generally the most terrible; wars of almost utter extermination, men, women, and children being often slaughtered without mercy. But, thanks be to God, the standard of the Cross, which is everywhere the sign of fraternity and peace, has been planted in the land ; and already is its influence beginning to be felt, insomuch that these intertribal conflicts are becoming much less frequent; and, in several instances, the din of war has been hushed by the still small voice of the Gospel. I am bold to affirm, that, through the influence of Christian Missionaries, feuds and quarrels between different tribes of Kaffirs have been often healed, and an amount of human suffering prevented, of which those only who have witnessed the effects of native wars can form an adequate idea. And if Immanuel lift up an ensign to the people, if the Gospel be more zealously and extensively proclaimed, even Africa shall cease to mourn for her slain, and her sable sons, hitherto distinguished for their sanguinary deeds, shall take up the song of praise, and cry, “ War is no more.”
The tribes thus driven from their territory by Chaka, having rallied their forces, poured down upon the Bechuana and Griqua tribes, like a sweeping rain; by the latter of whom, who were armed with guns, they were defeated, in a battle which took place at a distance from the town of Lattakoo, in the year 1823. These hordes were called by the Bechuanas Mantatees, or Invaders. Their numbers were computed at fifty thousand. On their retreat before the victorious Griquas, they appear to have separated into two divisions, one of them taking a north-easterly direction, and the
* Travels in South Africa, by G. Thompson, Esq., vol. i., p. 359.
other proceeding southwards towards Kaffraria and the Colony. Upwards of one thousand of them are said to have entered the Colony in a state of extreme destitution, where they found a refuge, and became servants to the colonists; and another portion of them made their way into the territory of Hintza, the great Chief of the Amakosæ nation. Here they were received with apparent kindness. Hintza and his people professed sympathy for them. They were permitted to “sit down ;” and now they began to hope that they had found a resting-place and a home. But treachery and deceit are constant characteristics of savage life. Hintza, like another Pharaoh, made bondmen of them, calling them his dogs ; and his people, to prevent their increase, used every means to oppress and to destroy them. For alleged crimes, of which they were innocent, their cattle were confiscated, their crops seized, and their daughters forcibly taken from their parents, and carried off they knew not whither. But at length the day of their liberty drew near. In the war of 1835, Sir Benjamin D'Urban, having conquered the tribes on the colonial frontier, crossed the Kei, entered the territory of Hintza, and set the captives free. On the arrival of Sir Benjamin at Butterworth, the Fingoes, to the number of nearly one thousand, threw themselves on his protection, and became allies of the colonial forces. With their wives, children, and cattle, and such other property as they then possessed, they left the territory in which they had been enthralled, and, under the protection of the British troops, proceeded towards the Colony with songs of rapture and of joy. The multitude numbered two thousand men, five thousand six hundred women, nine thousand two hundred children, and twenty-two thousand head of cattle, covering a space of eight miles in length, and one and a half in breadth. The scene exhibited at the passage of the Kei is said to have been remarkably imposing. The bed of the river is low, and the banks on either side are steep and rugged. It was early in the morning when the cavalcade began to move. From the heights above was observed a long and continuous line of waggons, winding through the bushy path, from the beginning of the descent down to the water's edge. Hosts of Fingoes accompanied them on either side, driving herds of cattle and goats, the women and children carrying on their heads mats, baskets, skins and bags of corn, all that they possessed; whilst many a mother had an infant slung at her back, whose little head was scarcely visible beneath the folds of the kaross in which it was enveloped. A veil of mist, now dense, and now more rarefied and clear, hung over the valley, and for a moment or two obscured the scene, which again burst forth upon the sight, as the vapour cleared away. “The group passing the stream," says an officer who was present, “ feeling their way with their sticks, as well as keeping their balance against the power of the current; the wading of children; the slow motion of the waggons; the plunges in driving the cattle; the timid bounds and rests of the sheep ; and the slipping and falling of the goats, as they passed the drift; was truly a picture worth beholding. The scene was bounded on the opposite height by the white clouds that hung over the valley of the Kei, from which were seen issuing forth the advanced guard and the first of the waggons. The latter began to arrive at noon, and it was only with the close of the day that the last finished the journey.”
It was undoubtedly a glorious deliverance. Sir Benjamin won no fairer laurels in the Peninsular campaigns than he won that day. To liberate the captive is a nobler work than to conquer an enemy in the field. The war of 1835 was in many respects calamitous, as indeed war must ever be ; but this event in connexion with it, gave joy to many a bleeding heart. The liberated Fingoes were, shortly after their arrival, located in a tract of country in the ceded territory, and were declared British subjects, the principal Chiefs taking the oaths of allegiance to the British crown. Here many of them have been brought under religious instruction, and not a few have experienced the renovating influence of the Gospel. Their freedom from civil bondage has been followed by their freedom from the yoke of Heathenism and sin; and, lifting up their heads above their enemies round about, they can bear testimony to the fact, that whom the Son makes free, they are free indeed.
Considerable numbers of these people reside in various parts of the Colony; and in Graham's-Town there are two large kraals or villages of them, one at the east of the town, the other at the west. Between these two villages there is a remarkable difference; the inhabitants of the former, who call themselves “ Missionary Fingoes," being accustomed to attend the Christian sanctuary, and having for the most part renounced the practices of the Heathen, whilst those of the latter, to whom, by way of distinction, the title “ Government Fingoes” has been given by the others, are seldom or never seen at the school or chapel, and still retain their former habits. In the dwellings of the one may be often heard the songs of Zion and the voice of prayer: in the other, the silence of the midnight hour is often broken by the noise of a heathen dance. The indirect influence which the Gospel produces on the mind of the barbarian and the savage is invaluable. If in many instances it fails to convert, yet it corrects the habits, elevates the conceptions, and refines the passions of mankind. You will perceive in the Kaffir or the Fingoe, who attends the house of God, though he has not believed with his heart unto righteousness, an evident superiority to others, as though he had been cast in a different mould. You can see that conscience is at work. There are indications that the man is sensible of the truth of Christianity. He knows that there is a God. He is conscious that he has a soul. You can appeal to his honour, to his dignity, to his fear of retribution; and his heart will oft respond. Thus it was with many of the “ Missionary Fingoes.” Some had embraced the truth, and were walking in its bright and cheering beams : others had not advanced so far, but, actuated partly by the example of the pious, and partly influenced by the instruction they had received, were evidently raised above their former state ere the light dawned upon their minds, and the tidings of the Cross sounded in their ears. The results of Missionary efforts are not to be estimated by the number of conversions that take place. These may be comparatively few ; but, meanwhile, other indications of good present themselves. Inquiry is awakened. Men begin to think. The dormant faculties of the mind are quickened. There is a noise in the valley of vision; the region is no longer one of unbroken silence; the bones of the dead begin to move.
Our native chapel was the one formerly occupied by the English congregation ; an humble building, covered with thatch, but, at the time of its erection, the largest in the town, and, in the estimation of the settlers, quite a treasure. It was here that I first heard the hum of a Missionary school, and here that I first witnessed a native Christian congregation. How animating the scene! Two or three hundred persons, once inhabitants of the forest and the wilderness, and but little elevated above the beasts that perish, were sitting at the feet of the Ambassador of Christ, clothed in European apparel, and listening with earnestness to the words of life and peace. To this congregation I was accustomed to minister in turn. It was originally composed of Fingoes, Bechuanas, Hottentots, and emancipated slaves; but the number of hearers gradually increased, so that the chapel was wont to be crowded to excess, and it was found necessary to separate the different classes, and to form distinct congregations of each. The service was conducted in Dutch or Kaffir. On the morning of the Sabbath, an abridgment of the Liturgy was read, the people repeating the responses with the greatest readiness and propriety. A liturgical service, or form of prayers, is admirably adapted to the state of such a congregation, as it tends to awaken attention, to excite interest, and, by its frequent repetition, to fix truth upon the mind. I subjoin in a note, as a specimen of the Kaffir language, the Te Deum, “We praise thee, O God,” &c. ; * in the glowing strains of which many of the once-barbarous sons of Africa have learnt to celebrate Jehovah's praise. To hear such words from the lips of such persons, their children likewise joining in the song, is sweeter music to the Christian's ear than the softest tones of the most admirable instrument, even though the language should be strange to him, and only the sentiments be known.
When addressing the native congregation, I was accustomed to propose certain questions, in order to preserve attention, and to ascertain how far the subject of discourse was understood. Sometimes an answer would be returned by one, sometimes by several, and occasionally by the greater portion of the assembly. I sometimes made inquiries relative to the condition of the people prior to their being visited by Christian Missionaries, to the
following effect :-“Before you heard the great word, what did you know respecting God?” The reply would be, “ We were dark, we knew nothing." “ Did you not know that there is a God?” “No: no one told us of him." “ By whom then did you think the world was made ?” “ We were stupid, we did not think at all !” “Did you believe that the rain-makers could bring rain?” “Yes.” “Do you believe this now ?” To this inquiry a hundred voices would answer, “No.” “Who then sends the rain ?” “ U-Tivo.” (God.) Thus did it appear that the ignorance of the native tribes in relation even to the elements of religious truth was most profound. But light is now beginning to dawn. The Day-spring from on high hath arisen upon South Africa. No more can Satan hold the dominion of the land in peace. His empire there, though mighty, has had a shock from the powerful battery of the Gospel, from which (if the churches that have sent forth their messengers be faithful in sustaining them) it cannot possibly recover. As yet, however, (for the whole truth must be told,) the noble warfare against barbarism in those regions is but just begun; and, instead of relaxing in the enterprise, it must be prosecuted with still greater earnestness and zeal.
Ofttimes a considerable measure of spiritual influence seemed to rest upon the congregation. A Kaffir or a Fingoe thinks it unmanly to weep; but I have seen many weep,-some who were not Christians, but stout-hearted unbelievers, and had come to the house of God by chance. One Sabbath morning the power of God was specially manifested; and as I descended from the pulpit at the close of the service, the Christian Chief Kama, who was present, and who can speak a few sentences in Dutch, took me by the hand, and said, Het is goed, Mynheer. Het is al te goed, Mynheer. But it is not prudent to appeal much to the passions of such an audience. All semi-barbarous tribes are susceptible of very strong feelings, which, when highly excited, it is difficult to control. Hence, the Christian Missionary should use caution, and be careful, when addressing a heathen congregation such as he meets with in South Africa, to appeal to the judgment, conscience, and understanding. It is a mistake to suppose that a Kaffir cannot reason. He can, and sometimes most acutely, even on religious questions. And the soundest converts to Christianity are always those who have obtained the best acquaintance with its truths. We had several individuals united with us in church-membership, whose piety was remarkably intelligent, and who held the offices of Class-Leaders, Local Preachers, or Teachers in the Sabbath-school. With an excellent female, whose name was Hannah Nokwenti, I was often greatly pleased. She was the Leader of a class that met in a room on my own premises; and though she lived at a considerable distance, she was ever at her post, in foul weather as in fair. Her class flourished considerably, and she gained accessions to it alınost every month. At the conclusion of the service she would bring to me her book, and the money paid by her members, which she collected regularly; and the greater the amount the greater was her pleasure and her joy. Hannah was always happy. Her very countenance bespoke the Christian, and the excellence of her deportment was observed by all.
The spirit of liberality begins to manifest itself wherever the influence of the Gospel is experienced. On the minds of barbarians, Christianity produces the same effects as it does on those of the civilized and refined. It melts the icy selfishness of the heart. It enkindles the divine affection of benevolence. It expands the soul, and teaches it to feel for the wants and woes of others. You will nowhere meet with so avaricious a character as