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treasury. The head of the executive department of finance and account is the comptroller and auditor-general, in whose office all the accounts of the country are brought together and compiled, who is responsible for the proper working of all the account departments throughout India, and is also the final authority for the disposal of all departmental or interprovincial differences of account. The comptroller-general is also the currency commissioner, and in this capacity exercises the functions which are performed for the British Government by the Bank of England.

The civil accounts of each province are dealt with by an accountant-general, with one or more deputies and assistants, who also conducts the detailed audit of all the civil expenditure. The proceedings of the accountant-generals are supervised by traveling inspectors, who report to the comptroller-general.

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The post-office, an imperial service under the finance department, is administered by a director-general. Under him come the postmaster-generals of provinces, either civil servants or departmental officers advanced for good service, who form one body for the purposes of promotion and are available for transfer from one province to another. The Indian postal rates are the cheapest in the world. A letter can be sent from one end of the country to the other—from Peshawur to Mandalay (3,000 miles)—for half an anna, value a halfpenny.


II. The department of revenue and agriculture, which deals with the business denoted by its title, administers also the following departments:

Survey of India department. This carries on three great branches of survey: (1) The great trigonometrical survey, or general measurement of the country. This has been practically completed within India, but is now being carried on to the extensive regions on the northwest frontier and in Burma which have recently come under British rule. (2) Various topographical surveys. (3) The revenue survey, for recording superficial areas and tracts as the basis of land-revenue settlements.


III. This department, which, with that of revenue and agriculture, is administered by the available civilian member of the governor-general's council, deals with all the business coming up to the government of India other than the special affairs already detailed and public works, and is the general medium of communication with the provincial governments and secretary of state, as well as the department in which all business relating to the government collectively is dealt with, as, for example, rules for the conduct of business between the departments.


IV. Public works, the administration of which forms another department of the Supreme Government, includes construction of roads and canals, supervision of railways, etc. This department also administers the telegraph department (with a director-general at the head). This is a more appropriate arrangement than to place it, like the post-office, under the home department. The telegraph lines being carried in many parts through uninhabited forests and over wild mountain ranges, their construction and maintenance present greater difficulties than the transmission of messages.


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Sir W. W. Hunter, in his 1892 edition of The Indian Empire, says of the details of administration in India:

Alike in regulation and nonregulation territory, the unit of administration is the district-a word of very definite meaning in official phraseology. The district officer, whether known as collector-magistrate or as deputy commissioner, is the responsible head of his jurisdiction. Upon his energy and personal character depend ultimately the efficiency of our Indian government. His own special duties are so numerous and so various as to bewilder the outsider, and the work of his subordinates, native and European, largely depends upon the stimulus of his personal example. His position has been compared to that of a French préfet, but such a comparison is unjust in many ways to the Indian district officer. He is not a mere subordinate of a central bureau, who takes his color from his chief and represents the political parties or the permanent officialism of the capital. The Indian collector is a strongly individualized worker in every department of rural well-being, with a large measure of local independence and of personal initiative.

As the name of collector-magistrate signifies, his main functions are twofold. He is a fiscal officer, charged with the collection of the revenue from the land and other sources; he is also a revenue and criminal judge, both of first instance and in appeal. But his title does by no means exhaust his multifarious duties. He does in his smaller local sphere all that the home secretary superintends in England and a great deal more, for he is the representative of a paternal and not of a constitutional government. Police, jails, education, municipalities, roads, sanitation, dispensaries, the local taxation, and the imperial revenues of his district are to him matters of daily concern. He is expected to make himself acquainted with every phase of the social life of the natives and with each natural aspect of the country. He should be a lawyer, an accountant, a surveyor, and a ready writer of state papers. He ought also to possess no mean knowledge of agriculture, political economy, and engineering. * * * The municipalities at present existing in India are a creation of the legislature; indeed, a recent branch of our system of administration. Their origin may be traced, not directly to the native panchayat, but to the necessity for relieving the district officer from certain details of his work. The panchayat, or elective council of five, is one of the institutions most deeply rooted in the Hindu mind. By it the village community was ruled; the headman being only its executive officer, not the legislator or judge. By it caste disputes were settled; by it traders and merchants were organized into powerful guilds, to the rules of which even European outsiders formerly had to submit. By a development of the panchayat the Sikh army of the khálsá was despotically governed when the centralized system of Ranjit Singh fell to pieces at his death.

The village organization was impaired or broken up under Mughal rule. Municipal institutions have developed under the British rule in place of the old Hindu mechanism or rural government, which had thus worn out. Police, roads, and sanitation are the three main objects for which a modern Indian municipality is constituted. In rural tracts these departments are managed (in different proyinces) by the collector, or by one of his subordinate staff, or by a local fund board. Within municipal limits they are delegated to a committee who, at first, derived their practical authority from the collector's sanction, implied or expressed. Except in the larger towns the municipalities can scarcely be said as yet to exhibit the attributes of popular representation or of vigorous corporate life. But the local government acts, which received a new impulse during Lord Ripon's viceroyalty, have strengthened the rural and municipal boards. Às education advances, they will be further developed. In 1882–83 the municipalities in British India, exclusive of the three presidency cities, numbered 783, with 12,923,494 inhabitants. In that year the municipalities of Calcutta, Bombay, and Madras governed a population of 1 millions; the members of the three municipal bodies numbered 171, of whom 93 were elected. Increased life and vigor has been given to municipal institutions in India by the extension of the elective principle under the local self-government acts (1882-1884). In important places the majority of the municipal bodies are elected by the local taxpayers, but in certain small towns all, and in every town some, of the administrators are nominated by the Government or have seats ex officio. In Upper Burma alone there are no elected members in the 16 municipalities, which, despite the recent date of the annexation, have already been constituted. The 758 municipalities, excluding the presidency towns, of which British India consisted in 1890–91 of 10,585 members, of whom 5,848 were

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elected and 4,737 nominated ex officio. But this does not fairly exhibit the advance made by the elective principle, for the nominated municipal commissioners of small towns or in backward provinces are included. It is more instructive to point out that in the 107 municipalities of the Northwestern provinces there were 1,218 elected to 317 nominated members, and that in the 145 municipalities of Bengal the proportion was 1,151 to 914. Out of the aggregate number of municipal commissioners, concerning whom information is available, 6,790 were natives and 839 Europeans. The population within municipal limits was, according to the census of 1891, no less than 15,024,308, of whom 1,580,715 resided in the three presidency towns. The larger the town and the more vigorous the municipality, the greater is the power of local administration conceded to it, and the larger the proportion of elected members. The establishment of rural self-government has been undertaken later than that of urban self-government, and presents peculiar difficulties, owing to the nature of the population and the distances to be traversed to attend meetings. Nevertheless district and rural boards have been formed in every province except Burma to administer and allot local taxation. The principle of election has been admitted as far as possible, and in the Northwestern provinces and Oudh 1,284 out of 1,564 members of the district boards were elected, and in Bengal 323 members out of 793. The greater part of the expenditure of these rural boards is devoted to local roads, but as the idea of local self-government develops they receive charge of primary education and sanitation. It is more difficult to get members to attend these boards than in municipalities, but with increased responsibility and powers it is hoped that this difficulty will lessen. * * * Excluding the village watch, still maintained as a subsidiary police in many parts of the country, the regular police of all kinds in British India in 1890 consisted of a total strength of 150,591 officers and men, being an average of 1 policeman to about 6 square miles of area and to about 1,468 of the population. The total cost of maintenance was Rx. 2,583,983,1 of which Rx. 2,418,973 was payable from the imperial or provincial revenues. The former figure gives an average cost of Rs. 26, 13, 8, or (at the old rate of exchange of 2g. to the rupee) of about £2 133. 8 d. per square mile of area, and of 1 ana 9 pies, or (at the old rate of exchange) about 2 d. per head of population. The average pay of each constable was Rs. 7 a month, or £8 Ss, a year. In 1890 the total number of places of confinement in British India, including central and district jails and lockups, was 746; the total number of prisoners adınitted during the year or remaining over from the previous year was 495,820; the daily average was 88,353. The places of transportation for all British India are the Andaman and Nicobar islands, where there are two penal establishments, containing in 1890-91 a daily average of 11,804 convicts.

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The government in Java is administered by a small body of carefully trained officials sent from Netherlands for this duty, who, by a skillfully devised and elaborate system, obtain the cooperation of the native chiefs in carrying into execution the laws and regulations, which are made by the Dutch Government in Netherlands and Java in combination. In Netherlands the colonial department is under the direction of a member of the council of ministers, corresponding with our term cakżnet, and through him are submitted to the Sovereign the more important of the laws and regulations framed by the Governor-General and his council in Java.

The Governor-General, appointed by the home Government, who is located in the island, exercises supreme control over the different branches of the general administration, issues ordinances and regulations, declares war, makes peace, and concludes treaties with the native princes; appoints civil and military employees, and watches over and protects the interests of the natives. He is aided by a council composed of five members, whose advice, however, he is not bound to follow, these officials being known as directors and subject to the control of the governor. These directors are in charge, respectively, of finance, public instruction, industries and worship, justice and public works, and the department of the interior. The commanders of the army and navy are the heads of their respective departments. Meetings of these department chiefs are called by order of the governor-general, and they form what is known as the "council of directors."

The island is divided into twenty-two provinces, at the head of which are European officers, who are as powerful in their provinces as the governor-general in the colony. These officials, or “residents,” are appointed by the governor-general. Each resident, who is a European, is aided by an assistant resident and comptrollers, whose duty it is to see that the laws and regulations are carried out throughout the province. All of these European officials must have received a careful training, either in the institutions maintained for that purpose in Netherlands, or in the island, or both.

The agency through which the resident and his aids carry out the details of the government in the province, or residency, as each district is called, is the regent, or “younger brother,” as he is called, who is always a native functionary belonging to one of the highest families of the country, and frequently of princely birth, and who receives a high compensation for his services in the administration of government among the natives. The families from which these “younger brothers” are selected, having been for preceding generations the rulers of the natives, their directions of the details of the government are the more readily accepted by the natives; and this is especially true by reason of the fact that the real ruler, the European resident, masks his authority under the title of "elder brother.” The regent, or younger brother, is paid a larger salary than the resident himself; has the right of precedence over all European functionaries except the resident; is surrounded by princely pomp, holds court where, according to Leclercq, “all the natives, even of his own family, approach him on their knees only;" has a numerous retinue, and exercises his control over all the native chiefs of the regency and through them over the people as a whole.


"The system of administration in Java," says Henry Scott Boys, whose long service in British India renders his view of government in Java especially valuable, “was, under the native sovereigns, almost identical with that of Akbar in India. The headmen of the villages were, as in India, chosen by the villagers themselves. The rulers of the subdistricts and provinces were appointed, and all held office at the pleasure of those who nominated them. With their duties as revenue collectors they combined the offices of criminal and civil judges, being assisted by the Musselman law officer and legal counselor, who was the expounder of local customs, which regulated much the dispensing of justice. The parallel between the Javan and Indian systems is curiously exact. When the Dutch made good their footing in the island they made no attempt to undertake its government. So far as the natives were concerned, they left them and their management entirely to their native rulers. They insisted on certain articles of commerce being kept close monopolies for themselves. They demanded from each district a forced contingent of rice, leaving the regents to levy it from the villages in whatever manner they pleased; compelled the regents to supply whatever labor they required, and after they had started the coffee plantations, required the regents to see that every cultivator planted, nurtured, and plucked a certain number of coffee trees. * * * Java and Madura are now divided into twenty-five residencies, which comprise seventy-eight regencies, each of which latter divisions is ruled by a native regent, assisted by an 'assistant resident,' who has as his lieutenant in the work a 'comptroller.' At the headquarters of each residency is a resident, with powers of supervision over the officers in charge of the regency. The work of administration is supposed to be done by the native regent, and all orders to the people are issued through him. The actual rulers are, of course, the Dutch, but it is their settled policy to carry, if possible, the native upper classes with them in their administration, and they endeavor to secure this object, even at the risk of much inconvenience and ineffectual government, which but too often results from this dual rule. The regency is again divided into small districts, each under immediate orders of a 'wadena,' who, like the regent, is a native of high family, with 'mantries' under him. These mantries, who are officials corresponding to the petty officers of police in India, are the relations, generally, of the regent and wadenas. In each village there is a headman, who is elected by the villagers. This man collects the land tax, allots the rice fields, keeps the roster of men at work on the plantations or roads, sees to the supply of gratuitous provisions for the mantries and others, and tells off the villagers as watchmen in their turn. He settles small disputes, and, being chosen by the people, is trusted by them, and is really a protection to them. The principle upon which the courts are based is the conferment of very limited powers upon both European and native officers sitting alone, even the regent being unable to inflict a severer punishment than ten days' imprisonment, while the joint court, 'laisdraad,' in which the resident and regent, with one other native of high rank, sit together, can inflict the penalty of death, subject to the confirmation of the supreme court at Batavia. The landraad is the principal civil and criminal court for natives. The resident, regent, and wadena exercise petty civil jurisdiction when sitting alone. No Europeans, however, are subject to any other than purely Dutch courts.

1 Rx.=10 rupees: present exchange value of the rupee, about 33 cents.


Mr. W. Basil Worsfold, in his A Visit to Java, published in 1893, describes the system of administration as follows: "The Netherlands India, as the Dutch possessions in the East are officially styled, includes the whole of the Malay archipelago, with the exception of the Philippine Islands belonging to Spain, part of Borneo in the possession of the North Borneo Company, and the eastern half of New Guinea, which is shared by Germany and England. The total area is officially stated to be 719,674 square miles, and the total population 29,765,031. It is administered by a governor-general, a government secretary, and a council of state consisting of five members, who are appointed from among the chief Dutch residents in the island of Java. As all matters of general policy are controlled by the secretary for the colonies, who is a member of the home Government, the functions of the colonial government are mainly executive and consultative. So close is the connection that the colonial estimates for revenue and expenditure have to receive the approval of the home Government before they can be carried out. Moreover, the various government officials scattered through the archipelago are responsible to the secretary for the colonies. There are colleges established both in Holland and Batavia in which the young men intended for the colonial service can receive a suitable training.

“The physical sanction upon which the Dutch authority rests is an army of 30,000 men, composed of Dutch, German, Swiss, Italians, and native, but officered exclusively by Dutchmen, and a navy of 50 ships. Of these troops, a large proportion (amounting in 1891 to 16,537) are native. The headquarters of the army is fixed at Batavia. There are barracks at Weltevreden, and at Meester Cornelis in the capital, and additional accommodation has been recently provided at Buitenzorg. The fleet is stationed at Soerabaya, a town which possesses the best harbor in Java, and which is conveniently situated at the other end of the island. There are, however, a few ships always stationed at Batavia. The greater portion of the fleet is composed of the ships of the Netherlands Indian navy, which is permanently stationed in the archipelago; but there are among them some ships belonging to the Dutch navy, which are relieved every three years.

"At the present time (1892) the chief occupation of the colonial forces is the establishment of the Dutch authority in Sumatra. Since 1874 the natives of Achin have successfully resisted the Dutch, and the Achin war has proved so costly and so disastrous that the home Government have ordered the operations of the troops to be confined to such as are purely defensive. Acting under these instructions, the colonial forces have retired behind a chain of forts, and all attempts to advance into the interior have been abandoned. Last year (1891) Baron Makay, the secretary for the colonies, was able to assure the States-General that 'excellent results were expected from the blockade system' now adopted, and that the Achinese were already beginning to feel the inconvenience of being cut off from their supplies of necessaries, such as opium and tobacco.

“Java is by far the most important of the islands of the Malay archipelago. Its population is four times that of the remaining Dutch possessions in the East. This population is divided as follows (1890): Europeans, 48,783; Chinese, 237,577; Arabs, 13,943; other Orientals, 1,806; natives, 22,765,977; total, 23,068,086.

"With the exception of the Chinese, the great retail traders of the Malay countries, almost the entire population of the island is native.' This term includes various branches of the Malay race, of which the chiefs are the Javanese and Sudanese, Occupying, respectively, the east and west of the island. Separate dialects are also spoken by the people of Bantam and Madura. There is little to distinguish the two chief races, except that the Javanese are more warlike and spirited than the Sudanese, who are somewhat more dull and almost entirely agricultural. Speaking generally, the native population of Java is but little inferior in intelligence to the native population of India, while in some respects—in particular in the readiness shown by the native princes to assimilate European learning and customs, and in a certain artistic sensibility manifested by the whole people—they resemble the inhabitants of Japan.

"The majority of the Javanese natives are employed in the cultivation of rice; in work on plantations, sugar, coffee, cinchona, and tea, and in various lesser industries, such as the making of mats and weaving of sarongs. They are also by no means unskillful as workers in clay, wood, and metals, and as artisans generally, and are successfully employed by the Government in working the railways and posttelegraph services. For purposes of administration the island is divided into twenty-four residencies. Each residency is further divided into districts, and finally into campongs or townships. It will be remembered that when, at the end of the eighteenth century, the Dutch Government took over the island from the East India Company they received possession of the soil, subject only to such limitations as the company had already imposed upon their ownership. Since that time the colonial government has pursued a policy in Java similar to that pursued by the British in India, by which the native princes have been gradually induced to part with their territorial rights and privileges and to accept in return proportionate monetary compensations. At the same time the services of these 'princes' have been utilized in the work of government. As a result of this latter, the sums paid originally as incomes equivalent to the revenues derived from the rights surrendered have now come to be of the nature of official salaries. Most of these regents, as the native princes are called, receive from 2,000 to 3,000 florins a year; but some one or two, such as the sultan of Djokja and the regent of Bandong,

No. 9— 8

receive as much as 70,000 or 80,000 florins. The Dutch have wisely employed, as much as possible, the social organization which they found in existence, and native authorities and institutions have been supplemented by European officials. In each residency there is, therefore, a double set of officials, European and native. First of all there is the resident, who resides at the chief town, and is the head of all officials, European and native. Under him there are assistant residents, controleurs, and assistant controleurs. The controleur is an official more especially connected with the Government plantations, and the regulation of the industrial relations between the planters and the peasants or coolies is an important duty which he fulfills. The regent is the head of the native officials, but, of course, inferior in authority to the resident, whom he calls his “elder brother. Under him is an officer called a patih, and then wadenas, assistant wadenas, and ultimately the village chiefs or loerahs. In addition to these there is a further official called a jaksa, who ranks above the wadenas, and receives information of any offenses committed. In the villages the loerahs act as policemen, but in the towns there are regular native policemen called oppas, who also attend on the wadenas. In each residency there is a court of justice consisting of a president, who is a paid legal official, a clerk of the court, and a pangoeloe or priest for administering oaths. In this court the jaksa sits

uperior courts at the three great towns, Batavia, Samarang, and Soerabaya, and a supreme court at Batavia. Murder and crimes of violence are generally rare, but small thieving is common throughout the island.”


M. Jules Le Clercq, in his excellent work, Un Séjour dans l'ile de Java, published in 1898, describes the Dutch system of government in Java as follows:

The administration of the colonial possessions is exercised in the King's name by the minister of colonies, and each year a detailed report is presented to the States-General on the situation in the colonies. The government of the Dutch Indies rests no more, as in the time of the famous Dutch India Company, in the hands of a commission, but is vested now in one man, a functionary of the King and responsible to him for the proper discharge of his office. This responsibility finds its sanction in the power granted to the King and the second chamber of the States-General to impeach him.


This royal officer has the title of governor-general. He is the commander of the land and sea forces of the Dutch Indies; he exercises supreme control over the different branches of the general administration; he issues ordinances on all matters not regulated by law or royal decree; he declares war, makes peace, and concludes treaties with the native princes; he appoints civil and military employees; he has the right of amnesty, clemency, and no capital punishment can be executed without his sanction. One of his most important duties is the protection of the natives; he watches that no cession of land violate their rights, and issues rules and regulations relating to the “government cultures;” he fixes the kind and extent of the forced labor and sees to the proper execution of all ordinances pertaining to this matter; he has the power of expelling all foreigners who disturb the public order. In a word, the representative of the King is vested with all the powers; he is, in the Empire of the Indies, almost the King in the absolute sense of the term.


To be sure, by his side, or rather under him, there is an India council meeting under his chairmanship and constituted of a vicepresident and four members, but this is a mere consultative body whose opinion he takes without, however, being bound to follow it. True, in certain cases specified by law he is bound by the decision of a majority of the council, but as the council is not responsible for the conduct of the Government, the governor-general, even in such cases, has the right of appeal to the King, and, pending this appeal, he has the right, even against the advice of the council, to take such measures as he regards opportune when he thinks that the general interest of the colony would suffer from the delay which an appeal to the King involves. As a matter of fact, the governorgeneral possesses all executive and legislative powers.


There are no secretaries or ministers at the head of the civil administration but officials, five in number, who hold the modest title of directors. These officials are subject to the order and supreme control of the governor, who in reality is the prime minister. There is a director of the interior, one of finance, another of public instruction, religious worship and industries, a director of justice, and one of public works. The commanders of the army and navy are the heads of their respective departments. The meetings of these different department chiefs, called by order of the governor-general, form the council of directors. To what extent the affairs of this council are almost family affairs may be best seen from the fact that sometimes the directors are chosen from among the brothers of the governor.


The machinery of the local administration, even better than that of the central administration, reveals the ingenious scheme by means of which a very small number of functionaries rules the densest population of the world. The island of Jaya is divided into twenty-two provinces, at the head of which are European officials who are as powerful in their provinces as the governor-general in the colony at large; but just as the chiefs of the departments have but the title of director, these provincial governors or prefects call themselves modestly 66 residents,” and their provinces, very often containing over a million souls, are called “residencies.” The “resident” appointed by the governor-general is in his province the representative of the government, and as such the chief of the civil administra. tion, the finances, justice, police, and he has the right to wear the payong, or gold parasol, which, in the eyes of the Javanese. is a mark of the highest rank. He is assisted by the assistant residents, who in turn have subordinates in the persons of the comptrollers, who see to the proper observation of the regulations relating to the natives, visit periodically the villages of their districts, listen to com. plaints. oversee the plantations of the government, and form, so to say, the link which connects the native administration to the European administration.


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The following features of the Dutch colonial service in Java show best its skillful organization. The mechanism consists partly in concealing the true motors of the machine under the network of pure display, by leaving to the native princes the illusion of power and veiling the actions of the European rulers. Each residency comprises one or more regencies, and alongside of each resident there are one or more regents. Now, while the resident is always a European official, the regent, on the other hand, is always a native functionary belonging to the highest families of the countries and frequently of princely birth, who bears, according to the importance of his rank, the title of “Raden Adipati,” or “Mas Toemenggoeng,” or even that of “Pangeran” (prince).

The natives are subject to the regent, their natural chief; the resident, although the real holder of power, does nothing except through the medium of the regent. In order to conceal his authority, he allows himself to be regarded in the eyes of the natives as the

u nthor of the recent and gives his orders to his brother in the form of recommendations. This formula, which would be


regarded meaningless with us, has quite an importance with the Javanese, since in their eyes the elder brother, in the absence of the father, is the chief of the family, respected by the younger brothers, but still regarded always as brother, and not as official chief. Being a brother merely, the regent enlightens him with his counsel. The European official is even held to take the advice of the native functionary, whenever the interests of the native population are at stake. The younger brother is the intimate counselor of the elder brother in all cases where the latter has to be enlightened on the condition of the people; but once a resident has made his decision, after having heard the opinion of the regent, the latter, as a good younger brother, has to submit whatever the decision be.

In order to leave to the natives the illusion of autonomy, the Dutch not only permitted them to keep their rulers, “wedonos” (village chiefs), but even their emperor. The territory of the Vorstenlanden, the central province which occupies the fifteenth part of the area of Java, constitutes actually a small empire, the last fragment of the Kingdom of Mataram. The Vorstenlanden are divided between two princes, the soesoehoenan and the sultan, the first residing at Solo or Soerakarta and the latter at Djokjakarta. These two capitals are even now the centers of Javanese life, and it is here that one can best form an idea of what Java has been in the past. Formerly the Vorstenlanden formed but a single province under a single soesoehoenan, but during last century the Emperor Hamangkoe, despairing of quelling a Chinese insurrection, called to his aid the Dutch and ceded to them some land in return for their services. Hardly freed from the Chinese, he met with the claims of his brother, who insisted upon his right to share the throne. Hamangkoe, in order to escape new struggles, applied for arbitration to the Dutch, who put an end to the dispute by a decision quite in conformity with the policy inspired by the principle. “divide ut imperes” (divide and rule). They divided the kingdom into two provinces, which was the best means to weaken a powerful State. The greater part of the two divisions formed the province of Soerakarta and fell to the share of soesoehoenan; the other division was turned over to the brother of the Emperor, who became sultan of Djokjakarta. The present Emperor and sultan are descendants of these two princes. The former bears the title of “soesoehoenan,” which means "his highness." He also has the titles of "The Nail of the World," "The Commander of the Armies," "The Servant of the Charitable," "The Master of Worship,” “The Regulator of Religion.”



The French colonies are, for the details of governmental methods, divided into two classes: (1) Those in which limited powers of legislation are granted to a local legislature, in a few cases wholly elected, in others partly nominated by the home government and partly elected; (2) those in which the government is conducted by decrees. These provisions do not include, however, tariff laws and other important measures, which are regulated by general legislation of the home government. In French Indo-China a large share of the government is conducted by decrees, though a local body partly appointed and partly elected chiefly by French citizens has very limited legislative powers. Under this general term of French Indo-China are included Cochin China, Tonkin, Anam, and Cambodia, whose united area is 263,000 square miles, with a population of 22,000,000. Cochin China, Anam, and Tonkin are inhabited chiefly by Anamites, who had a well-defined system of government when the French took possession. Under that system the country was divided into districts known as “communes,” in which the representatives of the ruling element formed a communal council and elected one of their number as the head of the commune, and this officer, as representing the commune, carried on the government, raised taxes, and under his general management order was maintained within his province or commune. The French have, in a limited way at least, adapted the details of the native form of government in much of this great section. Under existing French law with reference to colonies, the French executive not only administers colonial affairs, but issues general decrees for their government. This system is the result of the failure to complete legislation begun in 1854, by which a system of government for the French colonies in America was framed and the Emperor empowered to legislate for the others by decrees until a plan of government for the remainder should be framed. This plan has never been completed, however, and consequently the President and head of the colonial department direct the management of French Indo-China and other French colonies of this class by decrees.

The chief official of French Indo-China is a governor-general, appointed by the Government of France usually upon the recommendation of the department of colonies. The military and naval forces are subject to his orders, and all civil officers in the colonies are his subordinates, most of them appointed either by him or upon his recommendation. In Cochin China there is a lieutenant-governor, and in Tonkin, Anam, and Cambodia each a resident superior, each of whom is subject to the general direction of the governor-general. These in turn are assisted by residents and vice-residents, who carry out the details of the work through the existing communal machinery above described, on a plan somewhat similar to that of the Dutch in Java, relying for those details largely upon the native officials. These leading officials are paid sufficient salaries to assure the Government that they will cooperate faithfully, and, through their influence and knowledge of the people, administer the government in a manner which will be accepted by the natives. The tariff laws, however, are made by the French Government, and more of the details managed at the seat of the home government than is the case in the British or Dutch colonies, already discussed. The colony is represented in the French Chambers by a deputy elected chiefly by the Frenchmen residing in the colony, though natives may become French citizens if they desire and participate in such election. A colonial council also exists, which consists of two members named by the privy council, two by the Saigon Chamber of Commerce, six elected by Frenchmen residing in Cochin China, and six elected by a college of delegates chosen for this purpose by the nobles of each municipality. This council sits twenty days in each year, but is prohibited from debating political matters, its only duties being to issue decrees regulating private property, discuss finance and taxation, express its opinion upon tariffs and taxes already established, and send protests to the ministry in France.


The French system in French Indo-China is described by Prof. Henry E. Bourne, in a copyrighted article in the Yale Review, May, 1899, reproduced by permission, as follows:

* * * Indo-China is not mere territory containing a negligible quantity of inhabitants. The people, Anamites or Cambodians, have a developed civilization, with fixed customs and laws; but, unlike the Philippine situation, outside of Sulu there has been, both in Anam and Cambodia, a monarchy, through which the French leaders could organize a subjection of the people by treaties, usually negotiated at the point of the bayonet. It has not been necessary to deal with the vague multitude and to rule chaos. Still, on the whole, there is hardly a phase of the Philippine problem not already illustrated in the history of Indo-China.

Although in the sum of French possessions, Indo-China is almost an empire, like British India, it is ruled by a governor-general. It is not a unity, either in race or in institutions or in the development of the French administration. Tonkin and Cochin China, the deltas of the Red River and of the Mekong, are connected by the long and narrow Anam, of which the inhabited portion is crowded between the mountains and the sea, so that the group resembles, as the Anamites themselves say, a long pole with a bag of rice on each

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