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workmen from Europe, can work in the of their present life will ensure to them a open air, and exposed to the sun, why spiritual liberty in Heaven; but the greater should not white men be employed in part are bought at an age too late to learn all sorts of labour? But what then is French, and our missionaries do not underto become of the proprietors of these stand the language of the country. Morelands? I answer, they would become the over, those who have been baptized are not richer by this means. An inhabitant as yet better treated than the rest. would live at his ease were he to employ “ The planters add, that the Negroes twenty farmers : possessed of twenty slaves, merit the vengeance of Heaven for the he struggles in vain with an insurmounta- traffic they carry on. Are we then to take ble poverty. The number of slaves here upon us to be their executioners ? Let us are computed at 2,000. A yearly recruit leave the destruction of kites to the vulof an eighteenth part of that number is tures. found absolutely necessary. Hence we see, “ I am concerned to see that philoso that the colony left to itself would, in phers, who enter the lists with so much eighteen years, be extirpated. So true is alacrity to combat other abuses, scarcely it that, without liberty and property, po- speak of this slavery of the Negroes bepulation must decrease; and that injustice yond a degree of pleasantry: indeed, it is and good husbandry are incompatible. a subject they seem desirous of avoiding. “ The Code Noir is said to be made for
They speak massacre of Paris, and the relief of slaves : be it so; yet does of the Mexicans by the Spaniards, as if the the cruelty of the masters exceed the pu- crimes of our days, and in which the half nishment it permits, and their avarice of Europe are concerned, either as princiwithholds the food, the rest, and the re- pals or accessaries, were not equal to them. wards it decrees. If the poor wretches Can they believe the iniquity of murder. complain of this infringement, to whom ing a number of people of a different perdo they seek for redress? To judges, who suasion than ourselves, to be greater than are, perhaps, the tyrants under whose op
that of bringing misery and torment of the pression they languish.
severest nature upon a whole nation, to “ But, say they, these people are not whom we are indebted for those delicacies to be restrained but by severities; punish- which our luxury has rendered necessary ments must be inflicted, iron collars with
to us? Those beautiful rose and flamethree points, whips, fetters for their legs, colours in which our ladies are dressed; and chains of iron for their necks, must cotton, of so general use, coffee, and be made use of: they must be treated like
chocolate, now the only breakfast admitted savage beasts, or the white people could to polite tables ; the rouge, with which the not live like men. From this principle, pallid beauty gives new bloom to her comso grossly unjust, no consequences can be plexion ; all these are prepared by the indeduced but what are equally unjust and dustrious hand of the enslaved and opinhuman; nor does it suffice that these poor pressed Negro. Ye women of sensibility Negroes are victims to the avarice and and sentiment, who weep at the affecting cruelty of the most depraved of men, but story of a novel, or the representation of a they must also be the sport of their sophis- tragedy, know, that what constitutes your tical arguments.
chieftest delight, is moistened with the “ Our priests tell them that the slavery tears and dyed with the blood of men!"
RUNJEET SINGH, AND THE NORTH-WESTERN FRONTIER
OF THE BRITISH POSSESSIONS. To the utter ignorance of the circulated in this country respecting British public respecting the Sikh na- military movements in that quarter. tion, which forms the north-western Runjeet Singh, the King of the Sikhs, boundary of our Indian Empire, may was represented as a mighty conbe attributed in some measure the queror, who had subdued his warlike portentous rumours which were lately neighbours, and established an extensive and powerful empire. It was alluded, we regard its present sovereign natural, from such premises, that the as an extraordinary individual. He rumour should go on to say, that he has doubtless succeeded in assuming was advancing with an overwhelming kingly, though not despotic power. force to invade the British territories. But a very cursory glance at his his
We stated briefly, in our last num- tory, will sufficiently prove that his ber, the sum total of his successes; government has been that of a restless viz. that he had obtained possession of prince who dared not remain at peace, the fort and district of Peshawur, His early career, from 1805 to 1808, through the treachery of the Afghan was a series of unremitted endeavours governor, and that he had subsequently to obtain a predominance over his beaten the Afghans in a general en- brother chiefs, whether by craft or gagement. This is literally all ; for force. He was well aware, however, even the victory, decisive as it appears of the character of his subjects, and to have been, has by no means left has ever since contrived to find them him in the secure possession of his employment, by leading them against newly-acquired territory.
the neighbouring Afghan Princes, from In point of fact, our countrymen at whom he generally extorted tribute home know nothing of Runjeet Singh, for leaving them in their respective the Sikhs, or the Afghans; it is by no
The non-payment of means surprising, therefore, that a few the tribute was a continual pretext for indistinct reports should suddenly hostilities, and the prospect of plunder have affected the price of India stock. a never failing stimulus to his restless
We have formerly declared, not troops. It is pointedly stated in only that we entertain no serious ap- several of the native Ukbars, that the prehensions of formidable invasion principal chiefs of his nation were from either of our north-western either induced or compelled to accomneighbours, but that we even regard pany him, whenever he undertook an them as the best possible safeguard to expedition which led him but a trifling the British frontier. The Sikhs and distance beyond the frontiers of his the Afghans are each a warlike people: dominions. Moreover, he is continubut they are rather internally strong ally on the move in his own territhan formidable to their neighbours. tories, and hastily returns to his capiFrom the nature of their country they tal from any expedition he may bave are naturally independent. They may undertaken, without allowing himself acknowledge a single chieftain, but his sufficient time to follow up his sucrule will never be despotic, and his
When these circumstances tenure must always be precarious. are considered in connexion with the Both the Sikhs and Afghans are com- general character, and the feudal and posed of numerous tribes. In both na- religious institutions of the nation he tions the superior ability of a principal governs, we think it may be fairly chief has at times enabled him to assume argued that his own authority is at a degree of authority beyond that best precarious, and that his death which the national character would will, in all probability, occasion a total willingly concede. Such sovereigns dismemberment of the government he have occasionally aimed at foreign con- has consolidated. quest, but have invariably found it The most distant expedition in necessary to return after a short ab- which he has been hitherto engaged, sence, to subdue the turbulent dispo- was that which terminated in the consitions of their own subjects.
quest of the celebrated valley of CashConsidering the peculiar character This was a bait sufficiently of the Sikh nation, beyond even the tempting to excite the cupidity of the independent spirit to which we have subordinate chiefs in a more than
usual degree. With this exception, as to endanger the security of our however, bis military operations have Indian Empire. been invariably directed against the In point of fact, however, Runjeet petty Princes whose territories bor- Singh is on the best possible terms dered on his immediate frontier. The with the British Government. Several Nabobs of Moultan and Buhawulpoor years ago he was apprehensive and were objects of repeated attack on the jealous : but a friendly intercourse was southern side of his dominions, while opened with him, and we believe that on the northern the independent spirit he is perfectly satisfied that we are of the mountain chiefs has continually likely to entertain no hostile designs furnished him with excitements to against him. That he has none toaggression. He has been threatening wards ourselves we are equally peran attack upon Peshawur for several suaded : be is too conscious that he years, but never ventured upon the would necessarily be a loser in the undertaking. The treachery, however, contest. In the course of the late of the Governor has just given him Pindarrie and Mahratta war he was possession of that province, and the urged by the Durbar of Holcar to join European discipline which he has in- in the general confederacy against the troduced into his army has enabled British. Not only did he positively him to defeat the Afghans in a general decline, but he even recommended battle.
peace to the very powers which It is possible that this latter cir. sought his alliance. cumstance, viz. the establishment of
Mr. Moorcroft, now on his return an efficient standing army, may enable from his expedition beyond the Hima. him to assume a position hitherto be- laya range, is at present residing at the yend his reach; in plainer language, court of Runjeet. He was treated by that it will render him more despotic him with great kindness in his proat home and more formidable abroad: gress outwards, was furnished with an but even this can never secure to him abundance of every thing requisite for the permanent subjection of count- his journey, and specially exempted Jess tribes of independent warriors from being taxed with the usual duties broadly scattered over mountainous payable on the transit of merchandize.* districts,
In a word, the present sovereign of Fierce in their native liardihood of soul, the Sikhs appears, by his general conTrue to imagined rigtit, abeve controul. duct, to be desirous of cultivating
The kingdom of Cabul has been in friendly relations with the British Goa very distracted state for many years.
vernment: and we sincerely hope that The Prince who occupied the throne
a similar course of policy will be purwhen Mr. Elphinstone undertook his sued towards himself, by our Indian embassy has been long an exile, and authorities. we believe is now residing in the Bri- We have already said that we extish territories. The kingdom is also pect the dismemberment of the Sikh divided between two other competi- empire, notwithstanding the introtors, who have long been carrying on
duction of a standing army. The a rancorous hostility. If even from Europeans engaged in the service of such a state of things Runjeet Singh Runjeet are natives of various counhas hitherto found himself unable to tries, and must be expected to regard profit beyond the successes we have each other with some degree of naalready mentioned; if the possession of tional jealousy, if not animosity. Here Peshawur remains precarious even
then are ample materials for faction after a signal victory; there is much * We trust that we shall shortly be enabled 10 indeed to be accomplished before he
furnish our readers with very interesting details
respecting the discoveries of this enterprizing can appear in so formidable a character traveller.
and intrigue. Nor is this all : is it tion; and we hope also that the Tarlikely that the principal native officers tars of these districts are gradually in the Court or the army of Runjeet, acquiring more settled and social will look with a favourable eye upon habits. foreign adventurers ? So small, how- In our number for February 1822, ever, are our apprehensions of dan- we published a rumour, which was at ger from the increasing power of the that time circulated in India, respecting nation, and such, on the contrary, a chieftain styled Shah Moorad, who our regard for it as an interested ally, had just established an Usbek empire most happily situated for our own pro. of no trifling extent immediately on tection, that we sincerely hope our the northern side of the range of expectations of dismemberment may Hindoo Coosh. It was stated that he not be realized, but that the Sikh had subdued the following countries nation may continue to improve in within the space of eight months : vigour, consistency, and strength. Budukshan, Balkh, Kertageen Koolab,
On a former occasion, we laughed at Inderab, Khoos, the district of the the rumours that were then afloat of Hazarehs, and the province of Little a projected invasion from Russia, and Kashkar. As this newly-established endeavoured to point out the insur- empire, however, is only separated from mountable difficulties attendant on the territories of Runjeet Singh by the such an enterprize; and we may add, Hindoo Coosh, we cannot but think in our present reflections, that we are it probable that we should have derived equally persuaded that there is nothing subsequent intelligence respecting it to be dreaded from the Persians or the through the Lahore Ukbars, if it had Afghans. There are nations, how. really become so formidable as the ru• ever, which in former ages have swept mour to which we refer so pompously the earth with the besom of destruc- represented. tion; which have burst from their na- On these, and other topics relating tive plains with the force of an over- to these inland regions, we anxiously whelming torrent, and extended their look to Mr. Moorcroft for copious exterminating ravages to the western and accurate information. shores of Europe. The Tartars of To conclude our remarks; we repeat Central Asia, are a people to be feared. that the Sikhs and Afghans, from their Such has invariably been the celerity peculiar institutions, the independence of their movements, that their history of their character, and the general inand their power have been equally un- hospitability of the districts they reknown, until their armies have over- spectively inhabit, are the best outrun the world. It is true that, of late works for the protection of the Briyears, inquiry has been more alert tish territory we could possibly derespecting them; but the knowledge sire. The course of wisdom, on our we possess is very scanty. The most part, is clearly to allay their jealousy accurate and extensive information has and to cultivate their friendship; been obtained by the Russians, who studiously avoiding interference in have latterly had commercial, and, in their mutual animosities or internal some measure, political relations with government; and while we command: one or more of the Tartar Govern- their respect by our national strength, ments. At present there appears to to set them an example of good be no predominating Khan to unite government as productive of the blesthe various tribes for general devasta- sings of security and peace.
Review of Books.
The Slavery of the British West-India as copious supplies for our consumption of Colonics, delineated as it exists, both
sugar, in return. We might soon so far
reduce the commodity in price, as not only in Law and Practice, and compared to extend its consumption here, to the with the Slavery of other Countries, great increase of our revenue, but to unancient and modern, Vol. I.; being a
dersell every foreign rival that raises it by Delineation of the State in point of continent. We might thus ultimately put
slave labour, in all the markets of the Law. By James STEPHEN, Esq. an end to slavery in the new world, through London. 1823.
the competition of free labour, aided by We do not consider it remote from
British enterprize, in the old. Europe
and Asia, combining their commercial the character of our Journal, or likely faculties under the British flag, might deto prove uninteresting to the bulk of liver Africa from the slave trade, and our readers, to enter upon the subject America from its pestilent fruits. The of Colonial Slavery. Some of our rea- wiped away by the beneficent band of
foulest reproach of commerce might be sons will be collected from the follow
commerce herself, and the mistress of the ing extract from Mr. Stephen's pre- seas might obtain a new title, to be hailed face. He is alluding to the vapid and
as the benefactress of mankind in every
region of the globe. ridiculous menaces latterly held out to the Mother-country, by some of the
Certainly we do not go to the same West-Indian assemblies.
length in our expectations, as the eloThey will assert their independence of quent author of this passage. Our us!!! Then I trust they will allow us wishes however, are not inferior to also to become independent of them; and his; and we do think, that the prea rich boon it would be. The people of sent situation of the Western World, England would be punished by saving two millions a year, which we now pay in the the extensive revolutions of which it price of sugar, through their monopoly of has latterly been the scene, the imour markets, after every pretence of reci- proving character of its inhabitants, and merchants of England would be their progress in knowledge, in strength, further punished, by reaping a copious and in commercial importance, and harvest in every foreign region in which more especially the continued deprasugar is produced. They would no longer vity, hard-heartedness, and obstinate have to abandon to rivals on the European continent, or in the United States, the adherence to antiquated and exploded copious supply of Cuba, and in a great notions of self-importance, and white measure of Brazil
. By taking returns in privileges, which distinguish that small sugar, we should nearly monopolize the import trade of both. I am far from re
and degraded class, the planters of our comiending, indeed, our so encouraging colonies, will ere long lead to a crisis the agriculture of countries which still in all our West-Indian'islands, similar to adhere to the slave trade; but it is proba- the revolution in St. Domingo, though, ble that the boon of supplying the British for the sake of their British connexions, markets might effectually second our instances with them for the renunciation of we trust it will be widely different in that commerce.
We might also regain, its circumstances. and engross, the very valuable commerce of Hayti, which, in complaisance to Ja
In such a case, unquestionably, our maica, we have foolishly renounced. East-India possessions will assume a Above all, we should be enabled to culti- still more important character in their vate in the East the richest field that ever was opened to a manufacturing and com
political and commercial relations with mercial people; to reap the best fruits of
the Mother-country, than they even our vast Indian empire ; and greatly to now enjoy. And if any apology is strengthen its foundations. The looms of thought necessary for the present arEngland would be in full requisition to clothe the natives of Hindostan, and their ticle, this view of the subject will willing agricultural industry would give afford it to us. us full freights for our shipping, as well What is not very common in a work Asiatic Journ.--No. 99.
Vol. XVII. 2 M