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REVIEW. POLYNESIAN RESEARCHES.
"Tis yours to wreathe with fresh-blown flowers
But give to me the Mission scene, Ifmild Philanthropy be there, I'll quit the garden, grove, and green, To chant the bymn, and pour the prayer. And there I'll weep o'er heathens lost, Or glance earth's gloomy, moral map; Reflect what ransom'd millions cost, And stand like Moses in the gap; Nor mouru to leave the vernal bloom, Though it were soft Italia's May, So I may pagan minds illume, And wipe the churches' blot away! To weave a wreathie for heathen land, And draw them by the floral tie, Is charity sublimely grand, And worthy of a seraplı’s joy ; The lily, violet, and rose, (A truce to party) here may blend ; Love no polemnic warfare knows, When all have one delightful end! Muse, dip thy pen in youder bow, Or nature's a zure, gold, and green; Then to the groves for garlands go, W bere oft the vernal bard bath been; And bring the Rose of Sharon thence, Or else what boots the vernal bloom, "Tis but a paradise of sense, A nosegay scatter' o'er the tomb. No seasons in their annual round, 'The winter snow, the vernal morn, Nor Summer, by Pomona crown'd, Nor Autumn, with her wine and corn, Can vie with deeds that spring from love, Benevolence, illumin'd prayer ; Nor gems below, nor stars above, Have aught so beautiful and fair. Go drop commiseration's tear! Go symbolize with heathen woes! "Tis brighter than the dew-drop clear, “And sweeter than the virgin rose." This only gives the heart its spring, Joy enters not so bright a sign; There's not a plume in Fancy's wing, Nor vernal vista half so fine. 'This sheds a fragrance ever yoling, Tints with a beauty always new, Surpassing all that Thomson sung, Or Claude in landscape ever drew : It gives anew the golden age, It strings the prophet's lyre again, For every seraph, saint, and sage, Hail, blest Messiah's promised reign. Then meet and plead, ye good and wise! Though sceptics may deride your zeal; Let all who truth and mercy prize, Unite for weeping Zion's weal : She weeps to see the heathen lie, Wrapt in stern Winter's cheerless gloom; She weeps to see the millions die, With not a hope to gild the tomb i Alas, they have no vernal day! No tree of life was ever theirs ; That plant of Eden fair and gay, No fruit in their dark region bears: No passion-toweret ever smil'd, No lily love adorns the vale, But sin's dread aspect wide and wild, Spreads death with every passing gale. Oh, what a charnel-bouse is there! Of all deform'd and hideous things, The vestibule of dark despair, Where Satan to his einpire clings; And rules the darkness of the age, Yea, rules it with an iron rod, Keeps back the truth-inspired page, And bars the heathen world from God! Rise, men of Israel, in your night! Dash the usurper from his throne ; Rise ! wave the cross, dispread the light From isle to isle, from zone to zone : Rise in the might of faith and prayer ! That lever never failed yet ; Your love by golden deeds declare, And pay the heathen world their debt!
REVIEW.-“ Select Library.” Vol. 1.
Polynesian Reseurches. By William
446. Fisher and Co. London. 1831. We are informed in an advertisement prefixed to the first volume, that it mencement of a series, to be entitled, The SELECT LIBRARY. This series will consist principally of valuable and interesting works of a religious tendency, hitherto issued from the press, in an expensive form, that has frequently placed them beyond the reach of
These volumes, now published at six shillings each, neatly printed, and embellished with many engravings, cannot fail to extend their circulation, and to enhance their utility. Of this series, the volumes of Polynesian researches form an auspicious commencement, which, we doubt not, will be followed by treatises of correspondent merit.
This production of Mr. Ellis having already obtained an extensive circulation, comes not before the world to seek a character, but to diffuse more widely the valuable and interesting information which it contains. The reputation which it has acquired by universal consent, places it high on the pinnacle of fame; but what is still more honourable, its station is not less elevated, when measured by the standard of general usefulness. Combining, in one view, the varied and numerous objects which it embraces, it may be justly pronounced, without any exaggeration, to contain the most luminous, diversified, and interesting account of the islands in the Great Pacific Ocean, of their productions and inhabitants, that ever has been presented to the eye of Europe.
Until this work made its appearance, our acquaintance with the natives of these remote and insulated regions was very vague, questionable, and indistinct. Voyagers, who occasionally touched on their shores, could have but a transient opportunity of estimating the character of these untutored children of nature; and even allowing the estimate
to be correct, their observations must have entertained respecting an hereafter, the fol-
. This also was the religious conditions and relations, and that abode or resort of the gods, and those deified spirits not for a few days, but through a series of
that had not been destroyed. What their precise
ideas of a spirit were, it is not easy to ascertain. years, that their principles might be traced
They appear, however, to have imagined the shape in their varied effects, and the operations of or form resembled that of the human body, in
which they sometimes appeared in dreams to the their passions watched in their excitements
survivors. and ebullitions. But neither time, nor in- “When the spirit left the body, which they called tercourse, nor both combined, without dis- unuhi te rarua ete atua, the spirit drawn out by
the god, (the same term, unuhi, is applied by them cernment to notice, and diligence to record
to the drawing a sword out of its scabbard,) it was passing occurrences, would have been suf- supposed to be fetched, or sent for, by the god. ficient to collect an adequate history of the
They imagined that oramatuas, or demons, were
often waiting near the body, to seize the human novel varieties which might be reaped in spirit as it should be drawn out (they supposed)
from the head and, under the influence of strong the Polynesian field. It was reserved for
impressions from such superstitions, or the effects Mr. Ellis to occupy this desirable situation, of a disordered imagination, when dyin to be favoured with all the facilities which creatures have sometimes pointed to the foot of the
mat or the couch on which they were lying, and time and circumstances could afford, for
have exclaimed, “ There the varua, spirits, are collecting materials—to be blessed with a waiting for my spirit : guard its escape, preserve
it from them," &c. peculiar degree of alertness to “ catch the
“ On leaving the body, they imagined it was manners living as they rose,” and with seized by other spirits, conducted to the po, or talents to imbody them in the most interest- state of night, where it was eaten by the gods ; not
at once, but by degrees. They imagined, that ing publication respecting the natives and
different parts of the human spirit were scraped productions of the South Sea Islands, that with a kind of serrated shell, at different times;
that the ancestors or relatives of the deceased per. has ever been given to the world.
formed this operation ; that the spirit thus passed It would appear from the preface to the through the god, and if it underwent this process first volume, that Mr. Ellis visited the re- of being eaten, &c. three different times, it became
a deified, or imperishable spirit, might visit the gions which he has so ably described, in world, and inspire others. the character of a Missionary, under the “ They had a kind of heaven, which they called
Miru. The heaven most_familiar, especially in auspices of the London Missionary Society
the Leeward Islands, is Rohutu noanoa, sweet. that, during a residence of eight or ten years, scented Robutu. This was situated near Tama. he explored the greater portion of the islands hani unauna, glorious
Tamabani, the resort of
departed spirits, a celebrated mountain on the which he mentions—that most of his time was
north-west side of Raiatea. The perfumed Rohu. spent in familiar intercourse with the natives tu, though invisible but to spirits, was somewhere --that he made copious notes of much that Tipaehapa on the north side of Raiatea.
between the former settlement and the district of came under his notice that while residing in described as a beautiful place, quite an Elysium, the South Seas, be kept a daily journal, and where the air was remarkably salubrious, plants that since his return to England, in 1826, perpetual blooin.
and shrubs abundant, highly odoriferous, and in
Here the Areois, and others he has received regular accounts from his
raised to this state, followed all the amusements colleagues, still officiating on the islands;
and pursuits to which they had been accustomed in
Here was from which sources he has been enabled to food in abundance, and every indulgence. It is form the present work.
worthy of remark, that the misery of the one, and The first volume contains fifteen chapters,
enjoyments of the other, debasing as they were,
were the destiny of individuals, altogether irrewhich, among other articles, furnish histori- spective of their moral character and virtuous cal notices of the islands, a general survey
conduct. The only crimes that were visited by
the displeasure of their deities were, the neglect of of their vegetable and animal productions, some rite or ceremony, or the failing to furnish and a detailed account of the manners,
required offerings. I have often, in conversations
with the people, and sometimes with the priests, customs, genius, dispositions, wars, idolatry, endeavoured to ascertain whether they had any traditions, and pastimes of the inhabitants. idea of a person's condition in a future state being
connected with his disposition and general conduct Amidst this great variety, their traditions
in this; but I never could learn that they expected, respecting the origin of man, and the pre- in the world of spirits, any difference in the treatvalence of a general deluge, are particularly
ment of a kind, generous, peaceful man, and that of
a cruel, parsimonious, quarrelsome one. remarkable, from their conformity to other however, inclined to think, from the great anxiety accounts communicated by savage tribes,
about a future state which some have evinced when
near death, that natural conscience, which i be. living in distant sections of the globe, and in
lieve pronounced a verdict on the moral character several respects from their resemblance to of every action thronghont their lives, is not always the records of holy writ.
inactive in the solemn hour of dissolution, although
its salutary effects were neutralized by the strength In reference to the views which the natives
The second volume of these Researches is times upon the face of the letters; this he did, and not less interesting than the first. A con
then placing a sheet of clean paper upon the parcs.
ment, it was covered down, turned under the siderable portion of its contents having an press, and the king was directed to pull the handle. mmediate bearing on the natives, places
He did so, aud when the paper was removed from
beneath the press, and the covering lifted up, the their general character in a most interesting chiefs and assistants rushed towards it, to see light. We behold them under the dominion what effect the king's pressure had produced. of idolatry, the slaves of a bloody supersti
When they beheld the letters black, and large, and
well defined, there was one simultaneous expres. tion, offering human victims to the san- sion of wonder and delight. guinary deities, and addicted to the perform.
“ The king took up the sheet, and having looked
first at the paper and then at the types with atten. ance of hateful ceremonies connected with tive admiration, handed it to one of his chiefs, and pagan rites. In another view we perceive them expressed a wish to take another. He printed two
more; and, while he was so engaged, the first sheet breaking the chains of their mental captivity, was shewn to the crowd without, who, when they and emerging into light, beaming from hea- saw it, raised one general shout of astonishment ven on their minds, and awakening their
and joy: When the king had printed three or four
sheets, he examined the press in all its parts with intellectual energies. But these, and other great attention. On being asked what he thought phenomena, will best appear in the author's
of it, he said it was very surprising ; but that he
had supposed, notwithstanding all the descripown language.
tions which had been given of its operation, that The erection of a printing-press in Tahiti, the paper was laid down, and the letters by some the strong sensations which it excited in the
means pressed upon it, instead of the paper being
pressed upon the types. He remained attentively king, the chiefs, and the people at large, watching the press, and admiring the facility together with the bursts of admiration which
with which, by its mechanism, so many pages were followed its first achievement, Mr. Ellis left us; taking with him the sheets he had thus interestingly describes :
printed, to bis encampment on the opposite side of
the bay.”-p. 223. “ Pomare, who was exceedingly delighted when Of heathen worship, superstition, and he heard of its arrival, and had furnished every assistance in his power, both in the erection of the sanguinary rites, the following picturé canbuilding, and the removal of the press, types, &c. not be contemplated without horror. But from Papetoai, where they had been landed, was not less anxious to see it actually at work. He
it is pleasing to add, that both infanticide, had for this purpose visited Afareaitu, and, on his and the practice of offering human victims return to the other side of the island, requested that
to the Polynesian Moloch, has for several he might be sent for whenever we should begin. A letter having been forwarded to inform him that years been totally discontinued throughout we were nearly ready, he hastened to our settle- the islands. ment, and, in the afternoon of the day appointed, “ Raiatea is wot only the most important island of came to the printing office, accompanied by a few the Leeward group, from its central situation and its favourite chiefs, and followed by a large concourse geographical extent, but on account of its identity, in of people.
tradition, with the origin of the people, and their pre"Soon after his arrival, I took the composing
servation in the general delnge. It has been distin. stick in my hand, and, observing Pomare looking
guished as the cradle of their mythology, the birth
place and residence of Oro, their principal god, the with curious delight at the new and shining types, region to which disembodied spirits resorted, the seat I asked bim if he would like to put together the of their oracle, and the abode of those priests whose first AB, or alphabet. His countenance was lighted predictions for many generations regulated the exup with evident satisfaction, as he answered in the pectations of the nation. It is also intimately conaffirmative. I then placed the composing-stick in
nected with the most important matters in the tradi. his hand ; he took the capital letters, one by one,
tionary history and ancient religion of the people.
Opoa is the most remarkable place in Raiatea; of its out of their respective compartments, and, fixing
earth, according to some of their traditions, the first them, concluded the alphabet. He put together pair were made by Tii or Taaroa, and on its soil the small letters in the same manner, and the few they fixed their abode. Here Oro held his court. It monosyllables composing the first page of the small was called Hawaii; and as distant colonies are said spelling-book, were afterwards added. He was to have proceeded from it, it was probably the place at
which some of the first inhabitants of the South Sea lsdelighted when he saw the first page complete,
lands arrived. It has also long been a place of celebrity, and appeared desirous to have it struck off at
not only in Raiatea, but throughout the whole of the once ; but when informed that it would not be
Society Islands, It was the hereditary land of the printed till as many were composed as would fill a reigning, family, and the usual residence of the king sheet, he requested that he might be sent for
and his household. But the most remarkable object whenever it was ready. He visited us almost
connected with Opoa, was the large marae, or temple, daily until the 30th, whén, having received intima.
where the national idol was worshipped, and humari
victims were sacrificed. These offerings were not tion that it was ready for the press, he came,
only brought from the districts of Raiatea and the ad. attended by only two of his favourite chiefs. They jacent islands, but also from the windward group, were, however, followed by a numerous train of and even from the more distant islands to the souih his attendants, &c, who had by some means heard
and south-east. that the work was about to commence. Crowds “The worship of Oro, in the marae here, appears of the natives were already collected around the
to have been of the most sanguinary kind; human
immolation was frequent, and, in addition to the bones door, but they made way for him, and, after he
and other relics of former sacrifices, now scattered and his two companions had been admitted, the
among the ruins of the temple, there is still a large door was closed, and the small window next the enclosure, the walls of which are formed entirely of sea darkened, as he did not wish to be overlooked human skulls. The horrid piles of skulls, in their by the people on the outside. The king examined,
various stages of decay, exhibit a ghastly spectacle. with great minuteness and pleasure, the form as it
They are principally, if not entirely, the skulls of
those who have been slain in battle. A number of lay on the press, and prepared to try to take off
beautiful trees grow around, especially the tamanu, the first sheet ever printed in his dominions. callophyllum inophyllum, and the aoa, ficus prolira, Having been told how it was to be done, he resembling, in its growth and appearance, one of the jocosely charged bis companions not to look very varieties of the banian in India."-p. 316. articularly at him, and not to laugh if he should
We must now take our leave of these two not do it right. I put the printer's ink-ball into his hand, and directed him to strike it two or three very pleasing and instructive volumes, re2D. SERIES, no. 4.- VOL. I.
148.- VOL. XIII.
it convenient to invest it in the garments of Review. The Manual for Invalids. By disguise, and to erect his temple in the em- a Physician. 12mo. pp. 378. Buli. pire of romance.
London. 1829. In its fictitious department, we find a
The author informs us in his preface, that strange combination of historical delinea- his object in writing this manual is, to tion and flights of imagination, that might instruct his fellow-creatures first to know in furnish entertainment to a company of what health consists; to lead their judgArabian knights. It is a strange com
ment to the care of it while it is in their pound, in which truth and fancy are curi- possession, and to the regaining of it when ously mingled together ; where we are led
disease may have deprived them of it. onward in pursuit of an object that generally Secondly, by his advice, to enable the invacontrives to elude our grasp, and yet never retires from our sight. For this disappoint- farther: here I can assist my health, and
lid to say, thus far should I go, and no ment the author endeavours to make some
here I should consult my physician. compensation, by the extravagance of his
In these preliminaries the author appears episodes, and the wildness of his imagina- with fair promises, and we are glad to find tion, and in many instances his efforts are
that in his details we are not left to mourn crowned with success.
over disappointed hopes. From a general In its historical allusions, we find much
survey of the bodily structure, he proceeds vigour of intellect, many profound philoso
to describe the distinct and combined uses phical reflections; and judicious observa
of each in the coniplicated system of human tions on bondage, freedom, wealth, civilization, government, and law. The effects duct, and supplies, needful to preserve the
economy. He then advances to the conof tyranny, war, superstition, credulity, in- animal machine in proper order, adverting dustry, idleness, prudence, and economny,
to the pernicious consequences of excess, are depicted with a masterly hand. The
and on all occasions strongly enforcing the author 'thus furnishes the rough materials, necessity of caution, prudence, and modeand leaves his readers to erect the building; ration. he gives permanence to delineation, and
Of late and hearty suppers the author consigns to others the task of making the
thus delivers his opinion :application. In the following observations we find no obscurity :
“ Effects are constantly attributed to wrong canses :
we are continually bribing our judgments to justify “A king is a man of business. Call men of our inclinations. In a great proportion of the sudden business to your service, and with such on your deaths which are continually happening, two-thirds right hand, and on your left, administer the affairs
at least, are found dead in their bed in the morning. of your empire solely on those common, intelligible,
In these cases, the victim is prevented from relating long-tried, and indisputable principles, which the
a detail of the sufferings, or his opinion of their
cause ; but a large portion of cases of gout, asthma, good sense of the mass of mankind approves. hæmorrhoids, apoplexy, and many other diseases, may not too impatient of things confessedly imperfect : be fairly attributed to late and hearty suppers ; for old and familiar errors are less dangerous often they happen very often among that class of persons than young truths. Revise, amend, corroborate, who give themselves this indulgence. A light suppress towards the better ; but be slow to renovate, per, of easy digestion, no meat, and an early retireAct more than meditate."
ment to rest, give the best promise of repose upon the
pillow, and the best security that you will awake With many parts of these volumes we with renovated powers, and rise like a giant refreshed have been highly pleased ; with some we
in the morning."-p. 162. have been amused; and with others we For early rising the author is a strenuous have been astonished. In their great and and faithful advocate. The quantity of predominant feature, the trappings of fancy sleep necessary to preserve health, he obwave around us in wild exuberance, and serves, though certainly various in different with their unexpected glare too frequently persons, may, perhaps, be laid down as a eclipse the sentiments, for which, in the eye general rule, at not less than six hours, and of sober reason, this work can alone be con- not more than eight. sidered as truly valuable.
Active exercise he also strongly recomThe author's name no where appears; mends, not to produce languor by excess, but but whether he resides in the moon, or in the to give due motion to the muscular energies, land of Utopia, he is a man of splendid which will eventually facilitate all the natural talents, of vivid imagination, and one who functions of the body in their respective possesses an extensive acquaintance with the branches of operation. affairs of nations, and with the strength and To his various lessons of advice we have weakness of mankind. On past events he little doubt that multitudes will assent in engrafts modern follies, and thus teaches us theory, who will never reduce his admonito laugh at the absurdities of ancient times, tions to practice. He seems to be deciwithout allowing us to perceive that by só dedly of opinion, that were that care which doing we condemn ourselves.
is within the reach of every one, taken of our bodily health, as it stands connected
REVIEW.-TEMPLE OF MELEKARTHA.
the analysis before us is intended to furnish such precision as to satisfy all parties, and all the information that can be reasonably to obliterate either too much or too little, required.
is only to create a ferment which may not Independently of the amusement which speedily subside. Perhaps the wiser plan the records of tradition can always supply, will be to let the tares and the wheat grow it is both pleasing and profitable to explore together until the harvest. the sources of customs and observances From the distinct characteristics of each, which time has rendered familiar to our which this volume furnishes, an estimate of views. In these, we sometimes perceive, their proportions may be easily formed ; that reason gave birth to what has since and of these no one can doubt that the exbecome a degenerate offspring ; while cellent are by far the most numerous. To others, rendered venerable by the lapse of trace these customs, to explore their sources, time, can boast no higher lineage, than that and supply the history of individuals and of having been generated by ignorance and events, must have been a work requiring papal superstition, in the dark and gloomy much time and attention. These Mr. ages of adulterated Christianity.
Martyndale has brought to the subjects of In several of the explanations given, his inquiry; and the success, attendant on some valuable fragments of history are in- his researches, derives an additional value troduced, deriving elucidation from occur- from the variety of topics which this volume rences, seasons, and circumstances, which comprises, and the narrow compass, as well peculiar exigencies rendered remarkable in as respectable manner, in which the whole the calendar of time. There can be little is presented to the reader. doubt, that many of these memorials have outlived the occasions of them, and no loss would be sustained, either in church or
Review.– The Temple of Melekartha, state, if they were to be obliterated from the
in Three Vols. 8vo. pp. 358-301-328. columns in which they now appear. But
Holdsworth and Ball. London. 1831. in all national concerns, reformation is ge- This very singular performance is of such nerally distinguished by the tardiness of its a romantic character, that we scarcely know movements.
whether its delineations belong to the inhaIt must be obvious, however, to every bitants of our planet, or to those of another; observer, that to these rites, feasts, fasts, or if, from some peculiarities of description, and customs, whether originating in piety or we allow it a place on our sphere, we know superstition, no undue veneration or sanctity not if the antediluvian, or the postdiluvian is attached; nor is there the most distant world can lay the strongest claim to the probability, that in this country they will scenes and manners with which the author ever be used as fulcrums, either by states- seeks to amuse his readers. In his preface men or priests, to heave the public mind. he readily admits that he has darted on the The evils of commemoration seem, on the wing of imagination into some very distant contrary, to be more ominous from an op- region, and some very remote period, that posite quarter. So far as they secure any he may then and there unfold his bales of attention among the people, they encourage wisdom, which are to reward us for our idleness, drunkenness, and dissipation, and journey in following him :may therefore be considered as the innocent
"A word of apology should, perhaps, be offered causes of many pernicious effects.
to the reader, who, contrary to the usages of Standing, however, in the calendar of long a journey as into the regions of remote anti
modern novel-writers, is asked to undertake so our Establishment, they are no more than quity. The author can only say, that it was not dead letters, which appear as memorials of until he saw himself separated by the interval of
mariy centuries from all the well-known forms of what has been, or as buoys floating on the false religion, that he felt quite free from serious stream of time, to mark the spot in which
difficultics, and disagreeable entanglements, while
endeavouring to imbody the essential characters given superstitions sunk and disappeared. of certain delusions that infect human nature As buoys, landmarks, or beacons, they are alike inevery age.”-p. vii. not unworthy of preservation, and as inof- For what definite purpose we are carried fensive monuments of antiquity, care should back into those remote periods of antiquity be taken that they are not demolished with which speculation alone has visited, and unhallowed zeal.
directed to expatiate in regions which the That
many of them are insignificant, and eagle's eye hath not seen, we are not exeven contemptible, in themselves, no rea- pressly informed, though it may not be sonable person can for a moment doubt. difficult to conjecture. The author seems But to distinguish the useless from the use- to have an object in view, which he is un. ful, is an exceedingly difficult task. No. willing to touch in its native abode, and one can draw a line between them with unadulterated colouring; he therefore finds