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greatly improved by the changes, wnile others have I do not know what mode of punishment ought suffered sadly. One of the worst that we have to be prescribed for such offences as these against ever met with still continues in successive editions taste and poetry, to say nothing of the rights of of Worcester's Watts' and Select Hymns : authors, and the feelings of those who have so long Jesus ! and shall it ever be,
been familiar with the original, that they have a A mortal man ashamed of thee!
personal interest in them as they stand, and would Ashamed of thee, whom angels praise,
rather sing them as they have always sung them Whose glory shines through endless days. than to have them improved. They are ready to This is a beautiful verse, and the hand must have say with Rolla, in the play, “ We seek no change, been very profane that altered it so as to read as it and least of all such change as these men bring us.”' does in the book referred to :
The story has been told, and it is a good one, of
a chorister in the city of New York, who set some Jesus ! and shall it ever be, A mortal man ashamed of thee!
music of his own to one of the Psalms of Watts, in Scorned be the thought by rich and poor ;
which occur these lines : O may I scorn it more and more!
O may my heart in tune be found, Was ever such an anti-climax perpetrated? What
Like David's harp of solemn sound ! a specimen of genuine bathos !
Calling on his pastor, the chorister asked his apPerhaps the same thinker substituted this line,
probation of a new version of these lines, which When Christ, the mighty Saviour, died,
would render them more readily adapted to the for the original,
music he had composed. He suggested to read
them as follows : When God, the mighty Maker, died.
O may my heart be tuned within, Both the alterations were made to modify the
Like David's sacred violin ! ascriptions of Deity to the Son of God: both of them are unpardonable.
The good pastor had some internal tendencies to
laugh in the singing man's face, but maintaining his My willing soul would stay
gravity as well as he could, he said that he thought In such a frame as this, And sit and sing herself away
he could improve the improved version, admirable To everlasting bliss.
as it was. The delighted chorister begged him to
do so, and the pastor, taking his pen, wrote before There is beauty and poetry in the idea of the soul the eyes of his innocent parishioner these lines: “ singing herself away ;'' but the prosaic improvers must make it read,
O may my heart go diddle, diddle,
Like Uncle David's sacred fiddle !
A good lesson from this may be learned by all Can anybody give the reason for the change of a iar use. Let well enough alone.
who would improve the psalıns and hymns in familsingle word in the last verse of the seventeenth
OLD HUNDRED. Psalm, by Watts ?
Then burst the chains with sweet surprise, OVER-PRAYED HIMSELF.—We have heard a good is altered so as to read,
many ancedotes in connection with the Virginia Then burst the chains with glad surprise.
negroes, and the cholera, but the following appears
to be one among the best : A decided misimprovement, and the destruction of During the prevalence of the epidemic in that the author's idea, whatever may be the critic's. state last summer, the negroes on the different Every Christian reader has felt the force of that plantations became dreadfully alarmed, and thought third verse of Cowper's, “O, for a closer walk with they would certainly die with it. Among others, God!”
in one of the upper counties, was a negro boy, What peaceful hours I once enjoyed !
who, having heard his father say that the cholera How sweet their memory still!
would soon be along their way, left his work one But they have left an aching void,
day and betook himself to the woods. Here he The world can never fill.
was found by his overseer, soon after, fast asleep. Could words be chosen more precise and expres- he excused himself on the ground that not being
Being taken to task by him for leaving his work, sive? What then must be the effect of such an improvement in the third line
“prepared to die," he had gone to the woods to
“meditate.” “But," said the overseer, “how But now I feel an aching void ?
was it that you went to sleep?"-"Well, I don't as if the victim had a sudden sense of goneness, or know, Massa, how dat was 'zactly”—responded the an attack of the colic. Another of Cowper’s most negro; “ but I speck I must over-prayed myself !” precious hymns has suffered even more cruelly than Buried For Two THOUSAND Years.-Lord this, the alteration being at once barbarous and un- Lindsay, in his travels, writes, that while wanderpoetical, though made to render it more readily ing amid the pyramids of Egypt, he stumbled on a adapted to the music :
mummy proved, by its hieroglyphics, to be at least There in a nobler, sweeter song,
two thousand years of age. In examining the I'll sing thy power to save,
mummy, after it was unwrapped, he found in one When this poor lisping, stammering tongue of its closed hands a tuberous or bulbous root. Lies silent in the grave.
He was interested in the question, how long vegeThe last two lines, slightly altered, have been table life could last, and he, therefore, took that placed first, and the whole stanza is thus presented : tuberous root from the mummy's hand, planted it When this poor lisping, faltering tongue
in a sunny soil, allowed the rains and dews of heavLies silent in the grave,
en to descend upon it, and in the course of a few Then in a nobler, sweeter song,
weeks, to his astonishment and joy, the root burst I'll sing thy power to save.
forth and bloomed into a beautiful dahlia.
From Chambers' Journal. Williams, armorer, together with six natives, their THE PITCAIRN ISLANDERS IN 1849.
wives, and the native wives of the Europeans.
But now none of the men remained alive but Smith. There are few persons unacquainted with that The whole population amounted to thirty-five, who romance of naval history, the “Mutiny of the acknowledged Smith as their chief. They all Bounty." Yet, as we have some fresh information spoke English, and had been educated by him in to give respecting Pitcairn's Island, and the de- a moral and religious way. scendants of the mutineers, even those acquainted It is somewhat singular that these facts did not with the story will not object to be reminded become known till five years later-namely, till of it.
1813. The succeeding year Sir T. Staines, of his In 1789, his majesty's armed vessel Bounty, majesty's ship Briton, in company with Captain Piwhile employed in conveying the bread-fruit-tree pon of the Tagus, both still in ignorance of Folgar's from Tahiti to the British colonies in the West visit, accidentally approached the island. They Indies, was taken from her commander, Lieutenant were not a little astonished, on nearing what ihey William Bligh, by a part of the crew; who, head- believed to be an uninhabited place, to behold plan- . ed by Fletcher Christian, a master's mate, mutinied tations regularly laid out, and huts more neatly off the island of Tofoa, and put the lieutenant, with constructed than those on the Marquesas islands. the remainder of the crew-in all nineteen persons When about two miles from the shore, some natives -into the launch. After a passage of 1200 leagues, were observed bringing down their canoes on their they arrived at a Dutch settlement on the island shoulders, dashing through a heavy surf, and of Timor. The mutineers, twenty-five in number, paddling off to the ships ; but their astonishment were supposed, from some expressions which es- was unbounded on hearing one of them, on apcaped them when the launch was turned adrift, to proaching the ship, call out in the English lanhave made sail towards Tahiti. As soon as this guage, “ Won't you heave us a rope now?'' circumstance was known to the Admiralty by the The first man who got on board the Briton was arrival of Bligh and his companions in England, Thursday October Christian," the first born or Captain Edwards was ordered to proceed in the the island, and son of Fletcher Christian. His only Pandora to that island, and endeavor to discover dress was a piece of cloth round his loins, and a and bring to England the Bounty, with such of the straw hat ornamented with the black feathers of crew as he might be able to secure. On his ar- the domestic fowl. “ With a great share of goodrival, in March, 1791, at Matavai Bay in Tahiti, humor,” says the captain of the Tagus, we were four of the mutineers came voluntarily on board the glad to trace in his benevolent countenance all the Pandora to surrender themselves; and, from infor- features of an honest English face. I must mation given by them, ten others (the whole num- confess," he continues, " I could not survey this inber alive upon the island) were in the course of a teresting person without feelings of tenderness and few days taken; and, with the exception of four compassion.” His companion was George Young, who perished in the wreck of the Pandora near a fine youth of seventeen or eighteen years of Endeavor Strait, were conveyed to England for age. If the astonishment of the two captains was trial before a court-martial, which adjudged six of great on hearing their first salutation in English, them to suffer death, and acquitted the other four. their surprise and interest were not a little increased
It became known to the commander of the Pan-on Sir Thomas Staines taking the youths below, dora before he left the Pacific that the mutineers and setting before them something to eat, when remaining in the Bounty were reduced by desertion one of them rose up, and placing his hands before to no more than nine, and that they sailed away him in a posture of devotion, distinctly repeated, with several Tahitian men and women, each having with a pleasing tone and manner, “ For what we taken one of the latter as his wife, on the 22d are going to receive, the Lord make us truly September, 1789, intending to seek out some unin- thankful.” habited island, and having established themselves The two captains accompanied these young men on it, to break up the Bounty, so that all trace of on shore. With some difficulty, and a good wetthem should be lost.
ting, and with the assistance of their conductors, This was managed so securely, that all Captain they accomplished a landing through the surf, and Edwards' attempts to gain information of the Bounty were soon after met by Smith, alias John Adams, and her crew, at the numerous islands at which the a man between fifty and sixty years of age, who Pandora touched, failed, and nothing was heard of conducted them to his house. His wife, who was the mutineers for twenty years afterwards. In blind with age, accompanied him. He was at 1808, the American ship Topaz of Boston, Captain first alarmed lest the visit was to apprehend him; Folgar, touched at Pitcairn's Island, in latitude 25° but on being told that they had been till that moe' south, and 130° west longitude, and to his sur-ment perfectly ignorant of his existence, he was prise found it inhabited by the offspring of the relieved from his anxiety. Being once assured mutineers, headed by Alexander Smith, who had that this visit was of a peaceable nature, it is changed his name to John Adams. It was ascer- impossible to describe the joy on seeing those tained that among those who originally landed were whom they were pleased to consider as their besides Christian and Smith-Young, a mid-countrymen. Yams, cocoa-nuts, and other fruits, shipman, M'Coy, Mills, and Quintal, seamen, and with fine fresh eggs, were laid before them; and
the old man would have killed and dressed a hog another wife-an unreasonable request, which for his visitors, but time would not allow them to could not be complied with except at the expense partake of his intended feast.
of one of his companions; but Williams persisted The colony had now increased to about forty-six in his threat, and the Europeans, not willing to persons, mostly grown-up young people, besides a part with him, on account of his usefulness as an number of infants. The clothing of the females armorer, constrained one of the blacks to bestow consisted of a piece of linen reaching from the waist his wife upon the applicant. The rest of the to the knees, and generally a sort of mantle thrown .nale natives, outrageous at this act of flagrant loosely over the shoulders, and hanging as low as injustice, made common cause with their comthe ankles : but this covering appeared to be in- panion, and matured a plan of revenge upon their tended chiefly as a protection against the sun and aggressors. weather, as it was frequently laid aside, and it is Their plot was revealed to the wives of the not possible to conceive more beautiful forms than Europeans, and these ladies naturally, in such a they exhibited. They sometimes wreathed caps desolate place, set too inuch value on their husor bonnets for the head in the most tasteful man- bands not to give warning. The method in which ner, to protect the face from the rays of the sun ; they apprized these men of their danger is very and though, as Captain Pipon observes, they only characteristic and primitive, bringing to mind a had the instruction of their Olaheitean mothers, scene in the “ Lady of the Lake.” They intro“our dressmakers in London would be delighted duced into one of their songs the following words: with the simplicity, and yet elegant taste, of these Why does black man sharpen axe? To kill untaught females."
white man." But the warning was unheeded, Their native modesty, assisted by a proper sense and all but three of the party were murdered, inof religion and morality instilled into their youth- cluding Christian. ful minds by John Adams, had preserved these After this, things went on pretty smoothly, till interesting people perfectly chaste, and free from M'Coy who had been employed in a distillery in all kinds of debauchery. They all labored, while Scotland, tried an experiment with the tea-root, young, in the cultivation of the ground; and when and succeeded in producing a boulle of ardent possessed of a sufficient quantity of cleared land and spirits. This induced Quintal to "alter his kettle of stock to maintain a family, they were allowed into a still," and the natural consequences ensued. to marry ; but always with the consent of Adams, Like the philosopher who destroyed himself with who united them by a marriage ceremony of his his own gunpowder, M'Coy, intoxicated tu frenzy, own.
threw himself from a cliff and was killed ; and Such was the scanty information given to the Quintal, having lost his wife by accident, deworld of this interesting colony till Captain Beechy manded the lady of one of his two remaining comvisited it in the Blossom in 1825. Not till then panions. This modest request having been rewere the romantic adventures of the mutineers fused, he attempted to murder his countrymen ; after leaving Tahiti reduced to writing. They but they, having discovered his intention, agreed were taken from Adams' own lips, and signed by that as Quintal was no longer a safe member of him. The well-known “ Narrative” of Captain their community, the sooner he was out of the Bligh, and Byron's poem of “ The Island, or way the better; accordingly, they split his skull Christian and his Comrades," have since made with an axe. Adams and Young were now the them familiar to most readers.
sole survivors out of the fifteen inales that landed It appeared that Christian, after having pos- upon the island. They were both, and more parsessed himself of the Bounty, and while sailing ticularly Young, of a serious turn of mind; and it away from Tahiti, advisedly selected Pitcairn's would have been wonderful, after the many dreadIsland for his destination on reading Captain Car- ful scenes at which they had assisted, if the soli. teret's account of it,* which was in the library of lude and tranquillity that ensued had not disposed the Bounty. On January, 1790, he reached it, them to repentance. During Christian's lifetime and landed all the stores from the ship, intending they only once read the church service; but since to destroy her, and with her all trace of the his decease this had been regularly done every whereabouts of himself and his companions. Sunday. They now, however, resolved to have Once established on the island, they felt their con- morning and evening family prayers; to add afterdition comfortable even beyond their most san- noon service to the duty of the Sabbath ; and to guine expectation ; and everything went on peace-train up their own children, and those of their late ably and prosperously for about two years, when unfortunate companions, in piety and virtue. In Williams, who had the misfortune to lose his the execution of this resolution, Young's education wife about a month after his arrival, by a fall from enabled him to be of the greatest assistance; but & precipice while collecting birds'-eggs, became he was not long suffered to survive his repentance, dissatisfied, and threatened to leave the island in having died soon after. Adams steadily and sucone of the boats of the Bounty unless he had cessfully continued the good work which he and
his late companion had begun. * Carteret discovered Pitcairn's Island in the corvette, The children acquired such a thirst after Scripthe Swallow, in 1766. An account of his voyage was afterwards drawn up, together with Cook's first voyage, tural knowledge, that Adams in a short time had and published by Hawkesworth.
little else to do than answer their interrogatories, and put them in the right way. As they grew weeding, &c.; and, when not busily employed, up, they acquired fixed habits of morality and they generally meet in the morning, and, if the piety; their colony improved, intermarriages oc- weather is favorable, go fishing; while on Saturcurred, and they soon formed a happy and well-days they go out hunting for the Sunday's dinner. regulated society-the merit of which belongs to The Sabbath is still kept most strictly. Adams, and tends to redeem the errors of his for- The females usually assist in the cultivation of mer life. He died, honored and respected, on the the ground, preparing thatch for the houses, and, 4th March, 1829, aged sixty-five.
in fact, are more employed than the men ; they Such was the information obtained by Captain are generally very strong, many of them being Beechy. He found, on surveying the island, that able to carry a barrel of potatoes down to the it was no more than about seven miles in circum- landing-place, the path to which is very rugged ference, the abrupt rocky coast rising to about and steep, and in the rainy season very difficult to 1050 feet above the sea. The population had then ascend or descend. augmented to eighty persons, who, being descend- The food of the inhabitants is chiefly yams and ants of Europeans and native women, still form an potatoes, animal food two or three times a week. interesting link, in person, intellect, and habits, Fish is becoming scarce. Bedclothes are generbetween the European and Polynesian races. ally manufactured by the females from a species They are tall and robust, with black glossy hair. of mulberry. Wearing apparel they obtain from Since Captain Beechy's visit, ships are constantly the whale ships, in exchange for the produce of touching at the island.
the island. Cotton cloth is much wanted, and We now come to the most recent account of the amongst the other scarce articles are blankets, little colony. This, singularly enough, is supplied woollens, and soap. by the successor of the first ship sent out to seek The jurisprudence of this primitive community the Bounty-namely, the Pandora, which arrived is exceedingly simple. On the first day of each at Portsmouth only a few months ago. She year a chief magistrate and councillor are elected; touched at Pitcairn's Island in July, and found all persons, male and female, over sixteen years that its population had increased to 149 souls ; of age, being voters. The chief magistrate then seventy-five males, and seventy-four females. Of chooses his counsellor or secretary. His duty is these we have seen the following interesting to convene meetings, and to preside over courts analysis :—The “oldest inhabitant” is a Tahitian assembled to settle disputes. These, after the woman, aged eighty, widow of Edward Young, hearing of each side, are referred to a jury of five the midshipman. There are also two men of the persons, who return a regular verdict. In crimfirst generation- -one of them a son of John Adams, inal cases, the punishments are either labor or named Arthur ; and the other a son of Matthew fines. If in civil disputes the decision of the jary Quintal, named George. There are also seven is not satisfactory to both parties, they are allowed females of the first generation, of whom three are to appeal to the commander of the first of her daughters of Adams, and the rest of Fletcher majesty's ships of war which may touch at the Christian, Young, Mills, and M'Coy. The re- island. A reference made to Captain Beechy mainder are children of the second and third gener- while there, less on a judicial matter than on a ation. There are eight marriageable males, and point of conscience, is a touching instance of the seven marriageable females.
scrupulous regard these people have for a vow, Other information brought by the Pandora re- even when inconsiderately made :-wives, it may veals that, during the last five years, one fifth of be imagined, are very scarce, as the same restricthe population have been born. The healthiness tions with regard to relationship exist as in Engof the climate may be judged of from the low rate land. George Adams, son of the patriarch, in of mortality. Since 1831 there have been only his early days had fallen in love with Polly sixteen deaths : four of them accidental, four of Young, a girl a little older than himself; but fever, one of disease of the ear, one of the heart, Polly, probably at that time liking some one else, one of cancer, one of consumption, two of influenza, and being at the age when young ladies' expectaone in childbirth, and one in infancy. The dis- tions are at the highest, had incautiously said she eases most prevalent are asthma and catarrh, never would” give her hand to George Adams. which prevail mostly among the females ; bilious He nevertheless indulged a hope that she would attacks are frequent, but slight, and easily give one day relent, and to this end was unremitting way to treatment. Influenza had visited the island in his endeavors to please her. In this expectaduring the last seven years, and caused two tion he was not mistaken ; his constancy and deaths.
attentions as he grew into manhood, his handsome The inhabitants are industrious, especially the form, softened Polly's heart into a regard for him, females. They all rise with the sun, and retire and had nothing passed before, she would willingto rest very early. The men are occupied chiefly ly have given him her hand. But the vow of her in cultivating the ground and carpentering; sev- youth was not to be got over, and the love-sick eral of the young men are good at cabinet-work couple languished on from day to day, victims of and as blacksmiths. From August to November the folly of early resolutions. The weighty case they have plenty of employment, digging yams, was referred for Captain Beechy's consideration ; also planting them, with bananas and potatoes, J and the fears of the party were in some measure relieved by the result, which was, that it would
From Chambers' Journal. be much better to marry than to continue unhappy,
LONDON GOSSIP. in consequence of a hasty determination made
December, 1849. before the judgment was matured. They could LEt rural folk say what they will, we Londonnot, however, be prevailed on to yield to this de- ers do contrive to make our winters very comfortcision, and the Blossom left them unmarried. able and agreeable: if the atmosphere be murky Love, however, eventually proved too strong for without, within doors we have bright sea-coal overwrought principle; and a letter from Pit- fires, happy faces, and no end of entertaining recairn's Island, dated 19th March, 1830, stated that laxations, which grow heartier and warmer as the George Adams was married to Polly Young, and word goes from mouth to mouth-Christmas is had two sons.
coming. It would do your eyes good, in going Since Captain Beechy's visit, the average along our streets just now, notwithstanding the number of ships which anchor off the island has mire, to see the display in the shops—magazines been eight or nine per annum, mostly Americans, and mourning, books and bonnets, cakes, carpets, who, it is satisfactory to state, are reported to cashmeres, and confectionery. In strife or peace, behave well without exception. The last vessel prosperity or panic, on it goes, the great and multhat touched there was an English brig from New tiplex life-whirl of this busy metropolis : nothing Zealand, bound to California with emigrants, seems to disturb it but a deadly epidemic. there being eight English women amongst them. Not only business, but bodies corporate show On the arrival of a ship on the island, no one is signs of reänimation with the coming on of winter ; allowed to go on board before the pilot, who takes and all our learned societies (and the unlearned charge of the boats when landing, and provides ones too) are shaking off their vacation dust. for the captain when on shore ; each family in The Geographicals are all alive with reports from rotation furnishing a pilot, or providing a substi- and about travellers, and if the propositions thrown tute, who always expects a small remuneration out can be accomplished, we shall soon know from visitors for his service.
something more of the interior of Africa and other We have also gleaned the following particulars unknown regions. The Chemicals are talking of of the soil, culture, and meteorology of Pitcairn's acids, and alkalies, organic and inorganic bodies, Island :—The soil is very rich, but porous ; a and the “ metamorphosis of dicyanometaniline,” a great proportion decomposed lava, the other a rich, mysterious process about as easy to comprehend black earth and clayey ground. The climate is by the uninitiated as metaphysics. The Zoologitemperate ; the thermometer from 59 to 89 decals are discussing (not devouring) the birds and grees in the shade. The spring commences in animals, and whatever subjects of natural history August, which is harvest-time, and yams and may come before them at their meetings; where potatoes are dug; and of potatoes there are two the frequent introduction of new specimens affords crops a year, which are planted in February and a significant hint that we have not yet got to the July, and dug in June and November. There are end of animated nature. The Society of Arts no regular trade-winds : in the summer months have read papers on a new principle for suspenthe wind prevails mostly from east-south-east to sion-bridges and piers—which was suggested to north. Northerly winds are generally light, often the author's mind by his seeing lines of cobwebs accompanied with rain or fog. When the wind one day stretched across a street, and a spider is north, it invariably goes round to the west- working on them--and on flexible breakwaters and ward, from which quarter, and south-east, the lighthouses, another attempt at what has been so strongest gales prevail. With wind from south- often tried—open piles; but in this instance with west, it is generally clear weather with moderate a system of counterbalancing weights. The Civil breezes. In winter the prevailing winds are Engineers have survived the listening to the subsouth-west to east-south-east. The animal and jects of coffer-dams, as exemplified by the huge vegetable productions of the island are-goats, structure (1500 feet long) in use at Grimsby hogs, and poultry ; yams, sweet potatoes, the api- Docks, which famous works it is said will by and root and tano in small quantities; plantains, pines, by come into spirited rivalry with those on the melons, oranges, bread-fruit, sugar-canes, limes, other side of the Humber at Hull. The Dean of and the Brazilian plum. The only grain is maize. Westminster, Dr. Buckland, was present at one
From its distance from any other of the islands of the meetings, and suggested the propriety of in Polynesia, Pitcairn's Island is perhaps the engineers becoming geologists, so as to be able to most isolated place in the world. To this may make surveys without falling into error about be ascribed the gratifying tenacity with which strata. Shrewd advice on the part of the dean. the people preserve their simple virtues and mod- The Literatures have been occupied with memoirs esty. May the day be far distant when the vices on Egyptian antiquities, and on Mount Sinai ; and of other nations find their way among them! the Asiatics, as usual, are busying themselves We augur nothing favorable, however, from the with Sanscrit inscriptions and sculptures, extractvisit of the ship on its way to California—10 and ing facts useful to the historian or ethnologist out from which it is not much out of the main track. of matters seemingly the most intractable ; even It is to be hoped that the crimes of the “ diggings” as bees suck honey from nettle-blossoms. The may never be imported among the descendants of Antiquaries, among other matters, have been treatthe crew of the Bounty.
ing themselves to details on the boundaries of