Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[graphic]
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Drawn by I. Allan

me tu i cha

[ocr errors]

es que long

PUNISHMENT OF THE TCHA,

41

with the genius of that religion whose tender and merciful spirit ought to be apparent in all our institutions.

The instrument used in the punishment of the Tcha or Cangue, is a heavy wooden framework, formed of two parts, which parts are united to each other at one end, by a hinge, and at the other, by a lock, or screw. The neck of the culprit passes through a hole in the centre, and his hands pass through smaller apertures on each side. Sometimes he is indulged with the freedom of one hand, which he employs in relieving the weight of the cangue from his galled shoulders.

Over the screw which secures the parts inclosing the offender's neck, a paper is generally pasted, to which is affixed the seal of the committing mandarin ; and over another part of the apparatus, is a placard setting forth the crime which is visited by this degrading punishment.

The weight of these moveable pillories is from sixty to two hundred pounds avoirdupois, and the time of endurance is proportioned, according to the judgment of the magistrate, to the magnitude of the offence. A criminal has been known to endure a heavy cangue for half a year, passing his nights in the dungeons of Ting-hai, and being led by a chain, at break of day, to the most frequented of the city-gates. The keeper, armed with a thick bamboo, or large thong-whip, conducts him to some place where he may recline against a wall, and ease his shoulders of their ponderous load. If both the culprit's hands be confined, he cannot, of course, raise food or drink to his mouth; and in that case his attendant feeds him with the wretched jail allowance; or it may be, some compassionate occupants of the houses near to which he happens to be placed for the day, supply him with refreshments. One great aggravation of the suffering caused by this collar of infamy, is the ridicule to which the wearer, in consequence of his inability to feed or otherwise help himself, is exposed from the idle urchins who crowd the streets, and who, in China as elsewhere, are but too apt to insult the fallen.

The offended majesty of Chinese law is not on all occasions appeased by the imposition of the cangue; sometimes the mandarins think proper to inflict upon the liberated wearer, a number of blows with the bamboo; sometimes banishment from the district is added; and should the offence be deemed unpardonable, though still not deserving of capital punishment, the offender is sentenced to perpetual exile from the empire. The accompanying plate exhibits with painful fidelity the nature and distressing effect of the Tcha.

[blocks in formation]

42

THE PRINCESS OF CAP U A.

BY A. BAILLIE COCHRANE, M.P.

Why is thy heart so sad,
And thy voice, once blithe and glad,

Pensive and low ?
Why dost thou mournful pause,
Why sometimes without cause

Will warm tears flow?

Sorrow it cannot be,
Not grief, at least, for thee,

Whom all things bless;
Friends who but kinder grow,
If a dark cloud should blow

Moment's distress.

Oh! strange indeed! I weep
Because my soul doth sleep

Too happily here;
Because I feel no more,
As I have felt before,

Darkness and fear.

Awful mysterious things,
Angels with golden wings,

I still believe in,
But this belief is cold,
And my heart hath grown old,

Silent and grieving.

I do not tremble now
When the night-wind bloweth low

The storm through the vale;
My spirits do not sink
When the day is on the brink,

And the bright world grows pale.

[graphic][merged small][ocr errors]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »