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other, prevailed on the British representative to agree that the opening of the gates should be postponed for two years, to the 1st of April, 1849. As the time approached for the fulfilment of this engagement, the difficulties in the way appeared to increase. As early as November 1848, the popular feeling in and about Canton had made itself manifest, in a mode which could not be mistaken. Various circumstances, connected with the internal condition of the country, have combined to give to the expression of the popular will of the city and province of Canton a degree of importance, which is unknown in oriental monarchies. The people of this district, the most warlike and turbulent of all the divisions of the Empire, are said to be generally opposed to the Tartar dynasty; and the descendants of the ancient Chinese princes, we are informed, are still looked upon with a degree of reverence almost approaching to loyalty. The influence of habit, and some fear of the ulterior strength of the Government, have alone kept the people of the province from actual rebellion: but the Brother of the Sun and Moon has frequently been made to feel that the swords of his Tartar soldiery, and the buttons of his Tartar Mandarins, would be of little avail against the vengeance of an exasperated mob. The triumphs of the British, and the consequent exposure of the real weakness of the Empire, appear to have sapped the foundations of the Imperial authority and it was felt that another scene of humiliation, like that which was enacted at Nankin, would probably terminate the reign of the existing dynasty. Even in China, new ideas have sprung up; and the wish for change has made itself felt through all the Chinese "struldbrug civilization." Any declared opposition to the will of the mob at Canton, or any decided attempt to coerce the people, would have produced an outbreak, which, it was felt by the Imperial Court, would prove dangerous, if not ruinous, to its authority. The behests of the populace thus became law in the palace of the Tartar Viceroy. When, therefore, the great and important 1st of April arrived, the Imperial Commissioner Seu declared his determination not to allow the entrance of any foreigners, merchants or others, into the city of Canton. It was necessary, however, before a final refusal was given, to make a reference to the Emperor himself; as otherwise Seu felt that subsequent events might induce his master to throw the whole responsibility of the transaction on his shoulders, and possibly to remove his head from them by way of expiation. In due time the Imperial rescript arrived; and a more cautious and diplomatic missive was never concocted by Talleyrand himself Seu was directed to conciliate at once the foreigners and the people,
and to rely upon his own judgment for the mode in which this was to be done-but, above all things, to avoid embroiling the Government with the populace. This was simply to allow Seu to take what course he pleased, without reference to any thing but his own responsibility. Thus emboldened by his master's letter, he repeated his refusal; and, as the crisis appeared to involve the possibility of a war, Mr. Bonham, the Queen's representative, deemed it expedient to make a reference to England. Fortunately some very strong statements appeared, in the English and Indian Journals, of the danger and inutility of a forcible entry into the city; and the Ministry determined to waive the right which they had obtained by the second treaty. There was, moreover, another motive for the concession. In England there appears to have been, from time immemorial, a vague respect for the greatness of the Chinese Empire. Its vast extent, the indistinctness of our information concerning its resources, and the apocryphal stories of its advance in civilization and refinement, have not been without their effect on the minds even of statesmen. They totally forgot that Queen Anne, whose generals had conquered half Europe, felt precisely the same undefined dread of the great Mogul. The publications of that day frequently teemed with stories of the immeasureable magnificence of the Great Court, now pensioned by a company of Merchants. This dread of collision, combined with the complicated state of European politics, induced the Ministry to pocket the insult, which the Chinese Government had offered: and their determination has met with general approbation.
The satisfaction of the Emperor, at this termination of his difficulties, has been expressed in a very remarkable state paper: and as this document, and the proclamation of the people of Canton, are of some importance in estimating the real spirit of the Chinese Government and nation, we have given them in full. The following is the Emperor's proclamation:
"It is now ten years since the commencement of our affairs with the barbarians. The sea coast was troubled and distressed, vast treasure expended, and our army harrassed. Of late years, although they have been somewhat pacified; yet, on calm consideration, the best means of guiding them, whether this be rigour or mildness, cannot be determined: and the evils, which flow, are the more extraordinary as they increase. We have deeply feared that the people on the sea board would suffer the calamities of those who are trampled under foot in flight; and we have patiently borne all this, for it is an incontrovertible principle of reason that a small wrong must have ample redress.
Yesterday successive memorials were received from Seu-kwang-tsin, Governor-General of Kwangtung, on account of the English barbarians having again sent a request to enter the city of Canton, reporting that he had settled the affairs as most expedient and proper: and this day a courier
has brought a memorial, stating that the merchants and populace of the said place, being deeply imbued with high principles, have contributed funds to ward off the insult; and, the gentry and literati having really exerted themselves to assist, the question of entering the city was already set at rest. The said barbarians are to have free trade as of old; and both natives and foreigners will live in peace. Not a soldier has been killed, nor an arrow discharged. The said Governor-General, and Lieutenant-Governor, have tranquillized the people, and soothed the barbarians,-in every point maintaining the interests of main importance. They have caused the said barbarians to submit quietly, and not offer the least violence; and this settlement must be of permanent duration.
"Our feelings of congratulation and pleasure it would be hard fully to express; and it is fitting that we bestow liberal rewards to encourage such eminent merit. Let Seu kwang-tsin by our favour be rewarded with the title of Tsze-tseoh (Viscount), the same to be hereditary; and let him also be rewarded with a double-eyed peacock's feather. Let Yeh-ming-chin (Lieut.Governor) by our favour be rewarded with the title of Nau-tseoh (Baronet), also hereditary, and let him also be rewarded with a double-eyed peacock's feather. Thus will our kind reward be displayed. Let the two peacock's feathers be sent off, to be respectively received by the parties. Let Mun-zegan, Woolawtai-Coh-gar-tunga, Iang-ming-beang, and Tseang-lin, who all joined their efforts in fulfilling their duty, be by our kindness rewarded by the Board according to the rules for military merit. Let the Taoutai expectant, Heu-tseang-kwang, by our favour be entered in the new official List; and appointed to the first vacant post, whether it be one of greater or less busiLet the Sing-chung expectant, Woo-tsung-yoon, by our favour have the diploma of a Taoutai conferred upon him; and let the Board select him for employment without delay. Let these two officers be also rewarded with Buttons of the third rank. Let Seu-kwang-tsin also select all the other civil and military officers in Kwangtung, who exerted themselves most conspicuously in the business, and, on due consideration of their respective merits, individually recommend them to us, when we will afterwards bestow our favour upon them.
As to my people of Kwangtung, they have always been called brave and spirited, but of late years they have been deeply imbued with high principles-possessed of bravery, and enlarged discernment, indubitably arising from the spirit of renovation instructing them aright, and which is also the enlarged liberality of a heavenly disposition. It would be hard to find such thousands of people, who grudge not their wealth, and are stedfast in their minds. Pondering on the merits of their tranquil awe, can we but sympathize with them? or can our heart remain unmoved?
"Let Seu-kwang-tsin publish our words, that they be known to every family, and constantly increase a desire to exertion for the public weal, and devotion to us. All will then enjoy the happiness of a quiet life, and rejoice in their estate. Let the said Governor-General bestow rewards, according to the merits of the parties, and confer Tablets with inscriptions, that their glory may be manifested. Let not our favours be in the least retarded, and thus will our mind be consoled. Let the rest be all settled as agreed upon. Respect this."
The next is the proclamation by the people of Canton, in honour of their brave governor, and their braver selves :—
"Honorary Tablet erected to their Excellencies Seu and Yeh, by the gentry and literati. From of old there were no well-contrived plans for ruling the foreigners: for, if they were strictly governed, then strife arose; while con
tempt was the consequence of treating them kindly. Their dispositions are perfectly avaricious and presumptuous: as ravenous after gain, as the Leviathan rushing on its prey, if they be disappointed in their profits, they become ten times, yea, a hundred times, more outrageous, and cannot be appeased. It was said by Tang Kingchuen of the Ming dynasty, China and foreigners are like a great family, neighbours to a gang of robbers, whose proximity is more dangerous than their violence; for then there is no period when they must not be guarded against; while they are all the more able to observe every opening to their advantage.'
"The country having long enjoyed peace, our civilians have become negligent of the public welfare in their eagerness after their own advancement; and our military officers have kept quiet in order to secure their own safety. At the first rumour of robbers, they start with fear, and, seeing the storm from afar, scatter in amazement; ere they have come to the brunt, the spirit of the battalions is already affected, if not even extinct. There is perhaps some explanation for the unbounded violence and exactions of the foreigners; for in former times they had only Macao, one little corner on the extreme south, as a trading-spot: but now they sail here and there into every port, just as they please, building foreign houses, bringing foreign women, and obtaining all they ask for, to their heart's desire. Moreover, they boast saying, we are a match for the Chinese officers. Why should we not go into the city here at Canton, and pay our respects to the authorities, just the same as is done at Fuhkien, Chekiang, and Kiangnan?'
The Imperial envoy [Keying] unavoidably complied with the necessities of the case, and memorialized the Court, setting the period of three years, after which this might be allowed; but he shortly after retired from office and His Excellency Seu, an officer deep in counsel, and bold in action, was raised from the governorship to the rank of Governor-General; and, after about a year's possession of the post, he has fully learned that the spirit of the people of Canton can be depended on, and that the enthusiasm of the troops can easily be aroused. When the time arrived, the chiefs of the nations came in their vessels requesting an interview; when His Excellency accorded them a personal meeting, at which he firmly rejected ten or more things besought by them. Perceiving that the commissioner was immovable, the chiefs again put forth their request to enter the city; when His Excellency said, 'I will refer the matter to Court, to see whether or no it can be allowed.' They exclaimed. Well, well! We will hear the mandate.'
"Meanwhile the provincial officers generally thought His Excellency would not be able to arrange the matter amicably, and that native vagabonds would take advantage of the occasion to excite disturbance, which even his utmost energy could not overrule; but he never showed the least discomposure (at this threatening prospect), and, in conjunction with the Fuyuen Yeh, exerted all his wisdom and energy in making preparations for a resort to arms. At the same time, these two officers sedulously collected horses, and enlisted men, put in order the cannon and other military equipments, and laid in a store of provisions. They stimulated the enthusiasm of officers, by exciting their emulation and love for glory; they roused the courage of the soldiery, by holding out rewards, and by threatening certain punishments; they excited the patriotism of the gentry and literati, by circulating energetic remonstrances, setting forth in the plainest manner the happiness or calamity which would result from their conduct; and, by stopping the trade of the merchants and shopmen, they stirred up their indignation, and obtained their co-operation. By all these means, they prepared the people to protect themselves, every household making itself ready
for the struggle; so that spears and arms glittered in every street, the clangour of drums made the welkin ring, and the combined action of the many myriads of brave spirits in the city paralyzed the heaven-daring pride [of the foreigners], and terrified their slavish hearts.
'The Imperial rescript having arrived, His Excellency issued a proclamation that the popular indignation could not be opposed; and the question of entering the city was accordingly dropped. For about ten years, since 1839 and 1840, when troops were drawn out, and mutual hatred was stirred up, they have trodden down at will the coast of our country, seizing and destroying our people and our women, penetrating every where through our inner and outer waters; and the inhabitants have universally complied with their inclinations, as if they had been bewitched. Nobody could or would hear of any man, or any plan of action, adequate to oppose their intentions, or check their encroachments; only we of Canton at Sunyuensli have ever destroyed them, and at Hwang-chuh-ke cut them to pieces. Even tender children here are desirous to devour their flesh, and sleep upon their skins."
Soon after, another occurrence threatened to embroil us with a different power in China. On the 7th of June 1849, a young man of the name of Summers, a missionary, stopped in the streets of Macao to observe a procession of the Host: but either through ignorance, or a conscientious feeling, refused to take off his hat, as it passed. Perhaps Macao is, of all cities in the world, the most remarkable for the extreme bigotry of its inhabitants and their rulers. Even the Inquisition still exists in the town; and the clergy, it is said, seldom scruple to make use of means, more substantial than their spiritual weapons, to convince heretics that the bosom of the church is at least safer than heresy. The priests complained to the Governor, who was near the spot; and a message was sent to the young Englishman, with a request to him to comply with the customs of the place. Mr. Summers, not being able to understand the language of the request, still kept on the offensive hat. He was therefore summarily arrested, and thrown into prison; whence he wrote an account of the affair to Commodore Keppel, the officer in command of the Queen's vessels in the harbour, who demanded the missionary's release, which was peremptorily refused. He then determined to effect the object by force. The Governor was absent at a regatta : and the Commodore, landing a party of sailors and marines, passed through the town, and liberated Mr. Summers from jail. Unhappily one life was lost: and the Governor ordered the soldier to be buried, and made proclamation that he had been assassinated by order of Captain Keppel, Commodore of Her Britannic Majesty's fleet in those seas.
A singular question of international law has arisen out of this apparently insignificant affair. Macao has been in the possession of the Portuguese, ever since 1586, i. e. for more than two hundred and fifty years: but it has never been