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and mellow tenor. The counter may be supplied from the deepest voices of females and those of elder boys; while the treble in its purity can be contributed only by the clear voices of females and children." It is then that each person will employ his “gift” in accordance with the design of the Creator, and yield his share to the excellence and benefit of congregational Psalmody. Again: “I want,” writes Mr. Wesley, “the people called Methodists to sing true the tunes which are in use among them.” This expression is in the preface to “ Select Hymns, with Tunes annexed," second edition, 1765. This was designed, doubtless, to aid the Methodist congregations to “ sing with the understanding;” so that each family might have in their pew a copy of the music as well as the hymns used by the congregation, an idea which has been fully realized in the “ Companion to the Hymn-Book” recently published.
Further: that Mr. Wesley desired, and even provided, that every individual should endeavour to obtain an intimate acquaintance with such parts of his selections of tunes as are best adapted to his own voice, so that he may be qualified to join with musical propriety in the public praises of God, there is abundant proof. At the Conference of 1765, Mr. Wesley asks, “What can be done to make the people sing better ?” Answer: “Teach them to sing by note, and to sing our tunes first." This answer is also embodied in his directions to Ministers, thus: “Why should not the Assistant (Superintendent) see that they be taught to sing in every large society, and do it in such a manner as to obviate ill effects?” “ Certain it is,” writes Mr. Watson, “that since the airs in the sacred harmony have been suffered to fall into neglect and oblivion, the character of our congregational singing has not generally improved. One great reason of this evil, has been the inattention of Ministers themselves to this part of the service of the sanctuary; for what primitive Bishops (Ignatius, Basil, Ambrose, Chrysostom, St. Augustine) and General Councils did not think it unimportant to regulate or improve, has been too often left among us to the leaders of tunes and to choirs of singers." All the preceding rules respecting singing are committed to the Ministers, that they may fully carry them out into practice ; and Mr. Wesley requires them to be conscientiously exact in the whole Methodist discipline. To this there is allusion in the answers to his questions: “How shall we guard against formality in public worship; particularly in singing ?” “By preaching frequently on the head.” “By suiting" (therefore choosing)“the tune to the hymn," &c. At the Conference, 1805, it was asked, “ Are any regulations necessary with regard to singing?” Answer: “Let no Minister suffer anything to be done in the chapel where he officiates, but what is according to the established usages of Methodism; knowing that he is accountable to God for whatever he does or permits to be done, during the time he is in possession of the pulpit. Let no Minister, therefore, suffer his right to conduct every part of the worship of Almighty God to be infringed on, either hy singers or others; but let him sacredly preserve and calmly maintain his authority: as he who sacrifices this, sacrifices not only Methodism, but the spirit and design of Christianity." In 1815, the Conference again directs, “Let our rules respecting singing, and especially those which restrict the use of instrumental music in our public worship, be uniformly enforced.” The Conference requires that organs, &c., shall be considered as under the control of the Superintendent, or of the officiating Minister for the time being, whose right and duty it is to conduct every part of the public worship of God. From what has now been said, it will doubtless appear to many somewhat strange and unaccountable, that for so many ages the Christian church should have held it to be the duty of her members to sing the praises of God, and yet that she should have neglected the use of means to qualify them for the right performance of this duty. It is certainly high time that some ample and well-digested plan of instruction should be adopted, and put into extensive and efficient operation, for the purpose of training all young persons to sing with accuracy and intelligence. The grand essentials of good Psalmody, to use the words of a before-quoted writer, are piety and skill. Without the latter no person can sing with propriety, and they who are destitute of the former are unable to sing devotionally. The cultivation of both these for use in the sanctuary is the duty of every Christian, as it is presented to our attention in the sacred Scriptures. Psalmody is a part of divine worship which requires for its due performance the best exercise of the voice, the understanding, and the heart. It consists not simply in singing, nor even in singing praise, but in “singing praises to God; singing with grace in the heart to the Lord; singing with the spirit and the understanding also.” Whoever will consider the nature of this sublime ordinance may be assured that a right observance of it is conducive to the health of the body, the delight of the soul, the edification of the church, and the glory of God. As an intellectual and devotional engagement, Psalmody presents numerous and important subjects of discourse, which every Minister will do well to urge upon the serious and frequent attention of his hearers. As a vocal exercise, it demands the careful study of every individual, and will abundantly compensate for all the labour and time devoted to its improvement. The voices and musical talent of all the children in our congregations and Sunday-schools should be early and diligently cultivated, that they may be enabled to contribute their full share to the praises of the family and the sanctuary. There are many thousands of our Sundayschool Teachers, both male and female, who are fully qualified to give valuable instructions in Psalmody, to the children of their classes, and to others who may be invited to join them. Among the persons who now lead the praises of our congregations, may also be found many who are competent to superintend classes of adults. There is also a numerous and highly valuable class of individuals whose talents have been hitherto unemployed, but who are able to render most important service to this cause ; namely, the persons who have made sacred music their study, and to whose musical knowledge are added station, intelligence, and piety. Let such no longer be permitted to content themselves with silence or complaint, while ignorance and bad taste so often unblushingly preside over our worship; but let them be immediately and unanimously called upon to stand forward and consecrate their talents to the service of the sanctuary; let them resolve in the fear of God to obey the call of their Ministers and the church, and use their efforts to lift Psalmody from its degradation, and to make it such as God designed it to be,-intelligent, harmonious, and devout. With this hearty co-operation, and under the wise superintendence of the ministry, a power will be created which will be adequate to the correction of every evil, and the full restoration of our Psalmody to the model which Wesley left for his societies.
Finally : Delightful as this service is, Mr. Watson justly remarks, it has its corresponding dangers. The very means we take to engage our hearts with ardour to "give thanks unto God," may, by its appeal to our senses, steal away our attention, and leave our worship as sounding brass and a tinkling cymbal ; while, if rightly performed, nothing is more acceptable to God our Saviour. Wonderful, indeed, is his condescension, that, when the “sons of the morning” still sing together, and surround his throne with hallelujahs, he should say to a child of earth, “ Let me hear thy voice, for it is pleasant !” “ Whoso offereth praise, glorifieth me.” The reader is referred to an “Address to Wesleyan Methodists, on Congregational Singing," by James Gill.
THE NIGER EXPEDITION.
THE EDEEYAHS OF FERNANDO PO—HOUSES, FOOD, DAINTIES,
MUSICAL DIALOGUES. We found (says our author) the natives at George's Bay civil and inoffensive, as in all other parts of this singular island. Their habitations are indeed the rudest of the rude, being nothing more than a coarse mat of palm-leaves thrown over four uprights, and open to all the winds of heaven. A little block of wood for a pillow, an earthen pot to boil yams, and a rude wooden pipe for smoking, were the only articles of comfort or luxury any of them seemed to possess. Yet they looked happy and healthy, and proffered us a portion of their simple fare, as also eggs, which are never eaten by them, on account of some religious prejudice. The yams are abundant, and probably the finest in Africa, forming the chief article of food to the unsophisticated Edeeyah.
Occasionally they have as a bonne bouche, a stew of bush-rat, porcupine, snake, or venison. Fish is also plentiful at certain seasons, particularly a species of Clupea, about the size of an English sprat, and having very much its flavour. During some months, the land-crab is a favourite luxury, and the capture of them affords employment late in the evening, at which time they venture out from their habitations in the sand. Towards dusk there were numerous lights moving about on the beach, where the Bubis were actively engaged catching their prey for supper. With the exception of such spirituous liquors as the natives receive in exchange for their oil; topi, or palm-wine, is the common beverage. This exudes from the palm-tree on incision; is of a pleasant slightly acid flavour; very wholesome in the morning when first drawn, but more or less intoxicating towards evening, according to its state of fermentation. A tumblerful of it was frequently given to each of our men at daylight. About three or four pints may generally be extracted each day; but it gradually ceases after the seventh or eighth. The total quantity for each tree averages about four gallons ; but this depends on the size and age.
We had a visit from two Edeeyah hunters, bringing various specimens of monkeys, squirrels, &c., &c., which they had killed with slings. They were accompanied by their wives, two of the most beautifully formed and symmetrical figures we have ever seen. Notwithstanding the disfigurement of the face by large incisions, and the clay-bedaubed hair, they looked remarkably pretty, nay, even interesting; their gentle and modest demeanour contrasting strangely with the almost naked and unadorned state of their persons.
These were first wives, and had only recently come forth from the seclusion which they are obliged to undergo, prior to the public acknowledgment of the marriage contract among the tribe.
As we had often heard that the natives could hold musical dialogues even at great distances, by means of little gourd flutes, we prevailed on them to
separate, while by an interpreter one of them was desired to convey certain sentences to those at a distance. To our surprise we found, on cross-examination, that everything had been perfectly understood. They said they could communicate with one another, even at the distance of some miles, where the locality was favourable to the resonance of the sounds. This facility of musical correspondence is not confined to these people alone, since that distinguished traveller, the late Mr. Bowdich, mentions a similar practice among the Ashantis, and he was also informed of its existence in the district of Accra. That the Cameroons people have also tutored their hearing with a similar result, we had an instance in the pilot Glasgow. He was in Captain Allen's cabin one day, answering some queries relating to the river ; suddenly he became totally abstracted, and remained for a while in the attitude of listening. On being taxed with inattention, he said, “You no hear my son speak?” As we had heard no voice, he was asked how he knew it. He said, “Drum speak me, tell me come up deck." This seemed to be very singular; so Captain Allen desired him to remain below, and privately sent several messages to the performer in the boat alongside, who executed them by a variety of taps on his wooden drum; and these Glasgow interpreted in a way that left no doubt of his having understood perfectly all that the “ drum spoke.” He also said they could communicate by this means at very great distances, by the “ war-drum,” which is kept in every village to give and repeat these signals; so that there is intimation of the danger long before the enemy can attack them. We are often surprised to find the sound of the trumpet so well understood in our military evolutions; but how far short that falls of the result arrived at by these untutored savages !
This method of communication is no doubt employed by slave-dealers, to give notice of the movements of our cruisers.
SNAKES. Snakes were numerous in the dry grass : one very large black one put several of our Krumen to flight. These noxious reptiles are said to be very common all over this part of the country. They are much protected by the natives, who look on them as Ju-ju, or sacred. The venomous centipede (Scolopendra morsitans) was also frequently met with among decayed leaves : it has forty-two feet; the jaws are strong and horny, each furnished, like the sting of the scorpion, with a small tube and aperture, through which the poisonous fluid issues. Its bite produces violent inflammation, difficult of removal, though not often fatal. A less common, though more dangerous, insect is the African scorpion (Scorpio Australis). The body is brown, the legs reddish, the claws are long and filiform. Its sting causes a painful and troublesome wound, which occasionally terminates in a partial slough or mortification.
In addition to the enervating fever, we seem to be threatened with another and more singular visitation, not less dreaded by the seamen. For the last two nights, the little tenement on the starboard sponsor—which, having been comfortably fitted up by Lieutenant Strange for some of the blacks, went by the name of Kru-Town-had been disturbed by unwelcome intruders in the shape of snakes, which were now abundant in the waters, being driven off the high grasses on the inundated islands. The fear of these, as some of them were said to be venomous, was certainly one of the horrors, and in all the vessels several were killed at night, having either
twisted themselves up by the cable, or by the paddle-wheels. While we lay aground at English Island, they were seen frequently coiled round the tops of the reeds which appeared above water; and one of the officers of the Amelia tender absolutely practised with a pistol at a bunch of these reptiles, collected in that way near the vessel. On questioning a native on the subject, he gave a very satisfactory explanation. During the dry season, when the river is low, much of the land, now overflowed, is quite exposed and connected with the banks, and the grass soon springs up luxuriantly, affording a sunny and open resort for the numerous insects; snakes then come out of the surrounding woods of these localities; and when the water rises, cutting off large patches, like islands, communication is prevented with the banks. As the river gets still higher, they are obliged to take refuge on the reeds; and when these are submerged, they swim off, attaching themselves to the first object they meet in their course which may afford a refuge : in this way several must have accidentally come in contact with the vessels in the stream. Whenever a noise was heard in Kru-Town, the people used to say, “Another snake come.” One of a very venomous character was killed on board the Soudan.
FAILURE OF THE EXPEDITION—MOURNFUL RETROSPECTS. Before leaving Fernando Po, we visited for the last time the small locality appropriated as a burying-ground, where so many of our brave companions had found a last resting-place. It is a little outside of the town; a narrow winding footpath leads to it, through paths of guava and other dark-leaved trees, and near it a murmuring stream pursues its downward course. On reaching the sequestered spot, we stood once more beside the lofty cottontree, at the broad base of which is the tumulus marking the grave of Richard Lander. Near that enterprising traveller is deposited all that was mortal of the talented and amiable Commander Bird Allen, and on the right and left, those of Lieutenant David Hope Stenhouse, and Mr. W.C. Willie, mate; while around are commingled the remains of Doctor Vogel, botanist; Mr. G. B. Harvey, master ; James Wood and Horatio Collman, assistantsurgeons; W. H. Wilmett, clerk; Louis Wolf, seaman schoolmaster; Robert Milward, purser's steward; Morgan Rinson, marine ; John M'Clintock, Peter Fitzgerald, and Christopher Bigley, stokers.
How quiet, solemn, and how full of melancholy interest did that little place appear, draped with the sombre and almost impenetrable underwood, which nature in her luxuriance had already begun to throw around. It was not eight months since all these our friends, companions, fellow-labourers, had been laid there, and now each mound was mantled with a vegetation which almost obscured them from view: yet still the mighty bombax, with its stupendous branches, overshadowed them, sprinkling around the silken cotton from its pendent seeds; the broad-leaved banana, disturbed by the squirrel in his evening gambols, moved slowly to and fro; while on high the graceful palms reared their drooping plumes, and lent their trailing dependents, the parasitic orchidaceæ, to scatter their blossoms, and diffuse their odours, over a spot sacred to the memory of the philanthropist, the man of science, and the “friends of Africa.”—Extracts from Captain Allen's Narrative.