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Full text of "Letters from Sarawak : addressed to a child..."

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Ex Libris 
C. K. OGDEN 



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LETTERS FROM SARAWAK; 

3utnm>eli to a Cfjito. 

EMBRACIKG 

AN ACCOUNT OF THE MANNERS, CUSTOMS, AND RELIGION OF 

THE INHARITANTS OF BORNEO; THE PROGRESS OF THK 

< HURCH MISSION, AND INCIDENTS OF MISSIONARY 

MFE AMONG THE NATIVES. 

BY 

MRS. M C DOUGALL. 



FOURTH THOUSAND, 
WITH ILLUSTRATIONS BY THE AUTHOR. 



LONDON : 
GRANT AND GRIFFITH. 

(SUCCESSORS TO NEWBKRY AND HARRIS.) 
CORNER OF ST. PAUL'S CHURCHYARD. 

M.DCCC.LIV. 



LONDOX: 

.1. WERTHEIMF.R AND CO., PRINTERS, 
CIBCUS PLACE, FINSBURY. 



PREFACE. 



ALL Parents whose fate separates them from their little 
ones, during their early years, must feel anxious to lessen 
the distance which parts them, by such familiar accounts 
of their life and habits as shall give their children a vivid 
interest in their parents' home. With. this view the fol- 
lowing letters were sent to my little boy, during the last 
two years we were parted from him, when he was old 
enough to understand their contents; but I am induced 
to publish them at the instance of my friends, in order that 
the Mission, in which we are engaged, may become bet- 
ter known and more appreciated. 

Sarawak has, for the last seven years, furnished a ro- 
mance to the English Public, which, for a time, made its 
Rajah a favourite hero; such a feeling, and the demon- 
strations it called forth, were as creditable to them as just 
to him ; for it is well that the people of England should 
sympathize with their countryman in his really great work 
of civilising and humanising a nation, which has already 
proved itself worthy of the effort. While, therefore, peace 
and a good government ensure to the Malays and Dyaks 
all the fruits of their industry while they learn arts and 
manufactures, and imbibe a taste for luxury and refine- 
ment, let their kind friends in England join with their 
Rajah at Sarawak in giving them also the gospel of 
Christ's kingdom, through which alone all these acquire- 
ments can be made effectual to their happiness. 

1G75382 



i v PREFACE. 

The Mission at Sarawak was invited there by Sir 
JamesBrooke, to assist him in his schemes of philanthropy 
for Borneo. The funds at first furnished for its support, 
in answer to his appeal, were raised by the exertions of a 
few private individuals, with the assistance of grants from 
the Christian Knowledge Society, and the Society for the 
Propagation of the Gospel. After five years this money 
was entirely expended; and the Mission must have fallen 
to the ground had not the Society for the Propagation of 
the Gospel come forward to its support from the 1st Jan. 
1853. But although the venerable Society has undertaken 
this new work on its own reponsibiiity, its income is fully 
pledged to existing Missions, and there being no surplus 
fund, it must look entirely to the enlarged bounty of 
Churchmen, to enable it so to increase the force, and 
complete the organisation, of the Mission to Sarawak, 
that the Church may be planted in the purity of Gospel 
truth and the perfectness of Apostolic order in a land 
where the glad news was never before made known. 
Shall not England have the honour of building up this 
young and vigorous nation of Sarawak in the faith, which 
it is willing to embrace, and thus be the means of en- 
lightening and gathering the millions of Borneo, and the 
adjacent islands, into Christ's Church ? 

H. M'D. 

London, December, 1853. 

** Subscriptions to a special fund for erecting a Bishopric, 
founding a College, and sending more Missionaries to Borneo, 
are received at the Society's Office, 79, Pall Mall. 



CONTENTS. 



LETTER I. Voyage out 1 

LETTER II. Singapore . . . . .11 

LETTER III. Arrival at Sarawak 19 

LETTER IV. The Malays 30 

LETTER V. The Religion of the Malays . .41 

LETTER VI. The Productions of Borneo . . .50 

LETTER VII. The Dyaks Their Religion .. . .60 

LETTER VIII. The Dyaks Their History, Manners, and 

Customs ... . 69 

LETTER IX. The Pirates 79 

LETTER X. The Animals of Sarawak . . . .91 

LETTER XI. Life in the Court House . . . .102 

LETTER XII. The Mission House and Church . .112 

LETTER XIII. The Chinese at Sarawak . . . .126 

LETTER XIV. Journal of a Trip up the Rejaiig . . 138 

LETTER XV. Continuation of Ditto .... 151 

LETTER XVI. Conclusion of Ditto 161 

LETTER XVII. Malacca 170 

LETTER XVIII. Life of Sir James Brooke , .179 



LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 



LETTER I. 

THE VOYAGE OUT. 

January, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

I purpose, now that we are settled in our 
Sarawak home, writing you a letter once a 
month, which you must consider as coming from 
both Papa and Mama, for we shall take an equal 
interest in them, as going to our boy in England. 
You are now no longer a baby, but are beginning 
to enjoy life, to observe what you see and hear, 
and to feel interested in the world in which you 
live. You also know something of time and 
space; and can understand, that, if it takes 

nearly a whole day to travel from W to 

London, although nearly all the way by steam 
carriage, it must take six weeks' constant travel- 
ling by steamboat, by the overland route, to 

B 



2 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

reach the other side of the round earth, and four 
months in a sailing vessel, which only goes on 
when the wind blows. Papa, and I, and your 
baby brother, Harry, embarked in the Mary 
Louisa, a barque of 400 tons, on the 30th of 
December, 1847, for Singapore, on our way to 
Borneo. This barque was laden with coals and 
gunpowder, and there were five passengers 
besides ourselves. Sometimes, when storms of 
lightning and thunder burst upon us in those 
hot latitudes, where coals will even catch fire of 
themselves, I could not help picturing to myself, 
what a bonfire we might make on the open sea 
if the lightning struck us ! how those casks of 
gunpowder might send us, with one cry of horror 
and agony, to our last home, without any witness 
to our fate, except God Himself! But, in His 
mercy, He kept us through all the dangers of 
fire and water, and brought us to the " Haven 
where we would be," after a five months' voyage. 

I kept a journal of all that happened to us 
during those five months; and, on looking over 
it, I see that we had many pleasures, although I 
have since looked back on that time as the most 
weary and monotonous of my life. A fortnight 
after we left Gravesend we found ourselves sail- 



THE MEDUSA. 3 

ing into pleasant summer weather, which, after 
the cold winds and rough sea of the Channel, was 
a delightful change. One night Papa brought 
in, on his fish-hooks, some sea-weed, with phos- 
phoric insects in it, which appeared to be little 
transparent maggots, but in the dark, when 
touched and excited, were like glittering green 
flame. When the sea was rough these little 
ocean-stars danced round our ships, sometimes 
gleaming on the foam of the waves, and some- 
times floating in the dark hollows of the water. 
Some were as large as my fist, and their light 
like a lamp. Now and then a shoal of porpoises 
played games of leap-frog, and ran races within 
sight, and amused us very much. In calm 
weather curious little Medusae, which the Captain 
called Portuguese men-of-war, with shells of a 
dark blue colour, and feelers spread out, like 
sails, to catch the air, floated about us; and I 
have seen the pink Nautilus, too, from the 
window of my cabin, scudding away just out of 
reach, as if it laughed at me, when I brought my 
net, and stretched out of the port-hole to catch 
it. 

One day the sailors caught a dolphin, and we 
watched it change from one colour to another, as 

B 2 



4 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

it died on the deck : it varied from green to blue, 
from blue to pink, and, lastly, to silver, with 
patches of dark blue. South of the Cape, we 
fished up a bucket full of thick yellow looking 
stuff, which had appeared like streaks on the 
water for some days, and which Papa pronounced 
to be the food of the whale, a mass of animalculae : 
some were quite colourless, except a yellow spot 
at the tail; others were blue, with horns, and 
these carried bunches of eggs on either side of 
their tails, which we could see without the help 
of the microscope. While becalmed, off Java, a 
great whale sported about us, amidst a shoal of 
little fish, and a flock of men-of-war hawks kept 
soaring overhead, looking out, doubtless, for a 
tiny fish to snap up for their breakfast. 

Besides fishes, we had visits from birds of 
various kinds, when we were in the cold lati- 
tudes, south of the Cape the most notable of 
which was the Albatross, a gigantic bird, mea- 
suring ten feet and more from tip to tip of his 
wings. On the water, with their long curved 
wings outstretched, they looked as graceful as 
swans : but, when drawn on deck by a line and 
hook, baited with salt pork, they sat helpless and 
clumsy, their enormous hooked bills being the 



THE ALBATROSS. 5 

only formidable part of their appearance. If 
one was shot and wounded, while following the 
ship, his companions at once attacked him, and 
killed him outright, uttering hoarse cries. Papa 
preserved the head and feet of one he fished on 
board, and the sailmaker ate his flesh, which our 
nurse, Elizabeth, declared tasted like beef: but I 
think she must have been very hungry, to taste 
meat which smelt so rank. The head and breast 
of the Albatross are snow white, as well as the 
bill and feet, the upper part of the wings is of 
a dark grey, white underneath. These birds, 
with their greediness for lumps of salt pork, 
furnished us with several days' entertainment; 
and flocks of them, hovering, with their long 
wings, over the rolling billows of that troubled 
Southern Ocean, their white breasts rising and 
falling with the billows, made many a picture 
which an artist might have copied. Wha.t a 
contrast to these great ferocious birds were the 
little flying fish, which in sunnier latitudes 
sported near us, sometimes making a grand mis- 
take in falling on the deck, when we caught 
them, and, after painting a copy of their bright 
blue bodies and gauzy wings, had the barbarity 



6 v LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

to roast and eat them ! They were very delicate 
morsels, but not often to be caught. 

Notwithstanding these varieties, Charley, we 
lived the most monotonous life on board the 
Mary Louisa. We breakfasted at eight, and at 
ten all met together, to chant the Psalms for the 
day, or, if it were a Saint's day, for divine ser- 
vice. Part of the morning was occupied in 
studying the Malay language, and I embroidered 
some linen cloths for the Communion Service 
during the voyage, setting myself a certain task 
each day. At four we dined, and, when the 
evening closed in, we sat on deck, either talking, 
or singing hymns, in which the sailors would at 
last join us. 

When it was moonlight, these evenings were 
very pleasant. The moon is truly the Mariner's 
delight. She plays at bo-peep with you behind 
the towers of white sails, transforming the dull 
decks into fairy land. The expanse of water 
only looks vast when the moon, sailing among 
clouds, varies its surface with long shadows and 
lakes of light ; or when, on a cloudless night, the 
stream of brilliancy, from the horizon to the 
vessel, reminds you of Jacob's ladder, uniting the 



DIVINE SERVICE ON DECK. 7 

sky and the little portion of earth which a ship 
represents. When we reached the southern 
hemisphere we busied ourselves with the new 
stars, which gradually made our acquaintance 
one of our party, with a book and a dark lantern, 
helping the rest of us to read Heaven's map out- 
spread. The glorious star Sirius was always our 
starting point. We were rather disappointed 
with the Southern Cross, and fancied we saw 
many a more regularly formed cross in other 
constellations; yet, when you have once seen the 
real Cross, you can never mistake it. On Sun- 
days, if the weather allowed, we had divine 
service on deck. A flag, spread over the cuddy 
light, made the reading-desk : all the sailors were 
gathered together on the duck-coops, and we 
passengers sat on the chicken-coops. Papa or 

Mr. W , the other clergyman of our party, 

preached. Papa and Mr. W took great 

pains in instructing the sailors during these five 
months ; and, as Papa was also the physician to 
their bodily ailments, they all looked up to him 
with love and reverence; and we have found 
since, that, with many, the memory of his good 
advice did not pass away with the voyage. A 
ship is a parish within the compass of a very 



8 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

short walk, and, although English sailors have 
the character of being a most godless race, I be- 
lieve that there are not many men more impres- 
sible, more grateful for kindness, more open to 
religious convictions. Their very superstitious" 
fancies show how firmly the belief of a spiritual 
world works upon them ; and I have no doubt 
that their comparative solitariness, during those 
long night-watches, when they are all by turns 
alone, as it were, with the sky and their own 
consciences, makes this disposition inevitable in a 
sailor. 

My letter promises to be as long as our voy- 
age ; but it is time it should conclude. So you 
may now fancy us, on the third of May, 1848, 
espying land, the coast of Java not Java Head, 
the point of land we ought to have made, but 
far, far to the east, where we got into an unlucky 
current, which set us back in the night, as far as 
the light breeze took us on in the day, about 
thirty-six miles. At first we were puzzled to 
find that every morning the same high hill stood 
before us, when we thought, as night closed in, 
we had bidden it adieu ; and we named it " Hill 
Difficulty," for it seemed as if we could not pass 
it. But the current explained this. The heat, 



ANGER STRAITS. 

during the ten days we lay on this coast, was 
very hard to bear. The land shut off the breeze ; 
the sun poured down on our heads, and made the 
decks too hot to touch ; the sky looked like a 
brazen shield, under which the sea seemed to 
sicken and die; for there was not one ripple on 
its surface, but a kind of scum, on which slimy 
sea-snakes and unwholesome little creatures were 
crawling. Every night the air seemed charged 
with electric fluid. We had bright lightning and 
heavy thunder ; but scarcely any rain came from 
the shore, where the peak of Hill Difficulty was 
lost in clouds. But on Friday, the 12th, we re- 
joiced in a fine breeze, which carried us along 
that odious coast, past Java Head, and into 
Anger Straits, the same night. We passed along 
a lovely coast of hills and forests, the gales so 
scented with spicy fragrance, that all our senses 
were delighted at once. We anchored off Anger, 
and were soon surrounded with little boats, 
bringing fowls, turtles, fruit, parrots, and Java 
sparrows. Here the dark skinned Malay, so in- 
teresting to us, was seen for the first time ; and 
the busy chattering Chinese, making always the 
best bargain for his wares, amused us beyond 
measure. Indeed, from that time, until we 



10 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

dropped anchor in Singapore harbour, on the 
evening of the 23rd, we could scarcely sleep for 
excitement. Every new island and coast in that 
beautiful sea, to our delighted eyes, so long 
accustomed to gaze on a blank of water, looked 
lovely and romantic. The little huts, which 
nestled among the trees, seemed the abode of 
peace and luxury; and even the great flying 
foxes, which passed us at night in troops, as they 
flew from their hiding-places, to feast on the 
fruit-trees of the jungle, had a friendly look to 
our indulgent eyes. We did not leave the ship 
until the morning of the 24th, and then as we 
rowed toward shore amidst the ships of all 
nations lying in that harbour, from the English 
man-of-war of 1200 tons, to the Chinese junk 
with its great eye painted in the stern, to keep 
it from evil chances the hearty " one cheer 
more for Mr. M'Dougall," fell on our ears like a 
blessing, sending us on our way, with cheerful 
hearts, to our new home, and untried work. 
Good bye for the present, my little boy, 

From your affectionate Mother, 

H. M'D. 



LETTER II. 

SINGAPORE. 

February, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

My last letter told you how gladly we 
landed at Singapore, after our five months' voy- 
age in the Mary Louisa. The island of Singa- 
pore lies close to the Malayan Peninsula, and is 
about twenty-seven miles long, and fifteen broad. 
It commands a lovely view of sea and wooded 
islets, with the hilly outline of the coast in the 
distance. The ground rises in gentle hills from 
the sea-shore; and these rising grounds are 
covered with plantations and gardens, and 
crowned with pretty English Bungalows look- 
ing so cool, with their white walls and green 
verandahs, that the whole place seems a plea- 
sure ground. You see two handsome churches 
from the bay, as you approach : one is the 
English, the other the Roman-Catholic Church. 
In front of the sea is a carriage- drive and es- 
planade, and a well-kept green enclosure, where 



12 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

there are cricket matches, and where the military 
band plays at certain times, when the regiment, 
stationed in the Straits, is fortunate enough to 
possess one. Handsome houses, with gardens 
about them, overlook this esplanade, and a flag- 
staff surmounts the Government Hill, in front of 
the Bungalow where the Governor lives. 

Singapore is certainly a pretty spot, and as, 
during several visits there, Papa and I have met 
with much kindness from many excellent people, 
we regard it with affection, and as a little peep 
into the busy world, now and then, from the 
calm solitude of our Sarawak home. We had to 
wait for a month at Singapore, until the schooner 
Julia could take us to Sarawak, during which 
time we lived at an hotel on the beach ; and it 
was amusement enough to me to watch the 
passers by, thronged, as Singapore is, by people 
of all nations. First you may see some Chinese, 
in their loose blue trousers, white jackets, and 
white straw hats, with a long plaited tail of hair 
hanging down behind then some Parsees, in 
flowing white dresses, and a curious cap on their 
heads, shaped something like a bishop's mitre, 
and looking as if it were made of oil-cloth. 
Next comes a Bengalee, with his black skin, tall 



THE BAZAAR. 13 

slight form, and white muslin garments, and a 
great scarlet, or white, turban on his head. 
After him may follow a Jew from Armenia, 
richly dressed in fine shawl, turban, and sash, 
with long robes, and with a form and face 
equally handsome. Besides these, Portuguese, 
Germans, French, and English, Malays, and wild 
people called Orang Laut, who live in boats, and 
wear scarcely any clothes at all, present them- 
selves one after another. The Europeans dress 
entirely in white, with pith hats, to shield them 
from the sun, which, as Singapore is only eighty 
miles from the equator, is the most dangerous 
enemy to brains undefended by the thick skull 
and thicker head-dresses of eastern nations. 

There is a Chinese town, and a Kling, or 
Indian, town. The shops on either side of the 
streets are called the Bazaar. In one street you 
see only vegetables and fruit for sale in another, 
pork in another, cakes and sweetmeats, which 
do not look at all tempting to English palates, 
being more like cakes of yellow soap, or lumps 
of dirt (or mud pies, Charley, such as you manu- 
facture sometimes of Suffolk clay), than any- 
thing fit to eat. They are compounded of rice- 
flour, coarse sugar, cocoa-nuts, and oil. Some 



14 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

stalls are full of pine-apples, cut into curious 
shapes and slices great green water-melons, 
with pink watery pulp, very pleasant to thirsty 
people Jack fruit, so large that a man cannot 
carry more than two at a time, slung over his 
shoulders, and the pulpy seeds of which are very 
rich and high flavoured, but also very strong- 
scented. These last are, however, delicate, com- 
pared to the Durian, the famous fruit of the 
Straits, which, Papa says, tastes like a mixture 
of rotten eggs, sugar, and onions: I can only 
say that it smells detestable, for I have never 
tasted it. Far different is the Mangosteen, 
another fruit peculiar to the Straits, which has a 
purple rind, and a fruit lying inside, trans- 
parent as a large opal, and as pleasant to the 
taste as it is pretty. So much for the fruit- 
market. There is also a bazaar for glass, crock- 
ery, cottons, muslins, and silks, and where you 
may see all sorts of odd things, more curious 
than beautiful. Scattered here and there, 
amongst these bazaars, you see little shabby 
houses, with curtains hung before the windows, 
and " Opium Shop " written over the door ! 
These places are frequented chiefly by the Chi- 
nese, who smoke opium ill they are quite tipsy 



TIGERS. 15 

or insensible. The more they smoke, the less 
they care for anything else. They grow thin, 
and have a care-worn, miserable look, which, if 
they indulge much in this habit, you cannot 
mistake, and it kills many of them at last. 

The heat, noise, and bustle, of these bazaars 
are not very pleasant. We were always glad to 
escape from them, into the more airy roads out 
of town, along which, if you drive far enough, 
you get into the wild woods, which have not yet 
been cut down and burnt, and may even chance 
to see a tiger spring across the road. There are 
many tigers in the island of Singapore, still 
lurking in the jungle, or even in the copses near 
English plantations. The poor convicts, who 
work on the roads in the interior of the Island, 
are often frightened, and sometimes carried off, 
and eaten, by these savage beasts. The Malays 
make deep pits with sharp sticks at the bottom, 
to catch and impale tigers ; or they bait traps, 
like cages, with a dog or monkey : for the Sing- 
apore Government pays fifty dollars for a tiger's 
head, and the merchants add fifty more, to in- 
duce people to hunt and kill them. It is said 
that 360 human lives are lost in the course of 
the year, by the depredations of these monsters; 



16 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

and many are the tales told of narrow escapes in 
the jungle, where the Chinese clear ground, and 
plant gardens of vegetables, sirih, coffee, or 
gambier. During our last visit to Singapore, 
two Chinamen cleared a space in the woods for a 
garden ; but, being mightily afraid of tigers, one 
worked, while the other beat a metal drum called 
a gong, the noise of which they thought would 
scare them away. One day the working man 
heard the gong cease, and, looking up, he beheld 
man and gong both carried off by a large tiger. 
Papa, one day, joined a party of friends, in 
climbing a hill called Bukit Timah before sunrise, 
that they might see the view from thence. Papa 
was a little behind the rest of the party on a 
pony, when he smelt a tiger close to him. 
Having no weapon in his hand, and the peons 
with muskets being on before, Papa galloped 
after them, and told them he was sure there was 
a tiger in the thicket; which, indeed, was true 
enough, for, as they returned, the marks of his 
great paws were indented across the road, just 
where Papa smelt him, and very close he must 
have been, but he did not venture to show him- 
self. 

The country houses at Singapore are all sur- 



PLANTATIONS. 1 7 

rounded by plantations of spice-trees, cloves, 
cinnamon, and nutmegs, especially the latter. 
The young plantation has a stiff formal appear- 
ance, as the shrubs are planted at equal dis- 
tances, with a little shed over each to protect 
them from the weather; but, as the nutmegs 
grow tall, the sheds are dispensed with, and then 
I do not know a more beautiful shrub. It re- 
sembles a laurel in its leaf, and the fruit hangs 
in clusters like half-ripe apricots: the shell 
cracks, and you see the bright red mace peeping 
out, which holds the kernel wrapped up in its 
folds. The cinnamon trees are of a paler green, 
the new leaves soft pink and most fragrant ; and 
the clove trees very nearly resemble the nutmeg, 
except that they are smaller. Every day ser- 
vants go round the plantations, picking up the 
fallen nuts, which are very valuable. They dry 
the mace in the sun, when it loses its bright red 
colour; the shells are boiled down with sugar, 
and make a fine jelly, which AVC eat, instead of 
red-currant jelly, with roast mutton. These 
spice plantations have made many fine fortunes in 
the Straits: but it takes twelve years' outlay and 
patience, before the trees begin to yield; and 
meanwhile they require a great deal of care and 

c 



18 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

labour bestowed upon them. They certainly 
give the ground a very garden-like and culti- 
vated appearance. I must not close my letter 
about Singapore, without telling you that it was 
first settled, as an English colony, by Sir Stam- 
ford Raffles, in the year 1819, and by him made 
a free port for the ships of all nations ; by which 
I mean, that merchants pay no public customs or 
taxes, for any kind of goods landed there. 
This has made it such a favourite harbour for 
merchant ships, and such a thriving trading 
colony, that it has for many years past proved 
the foresight and wisdom of the founder. 

There is one little spot at Singapore, more 
dear to Papa and me, than all the plain besides. 
This is the English Cemetery, a beautiful garden 
on the side of a hill, where was buried our dear 
child Harry. He died at Singapore, at the age 
of three years, in 1850. A cross of granite 
marks the grave, and a jessamine bush, trans- 
planted from our garden at Sarawak, grows 
beside it. 

Good bye, Charley, 

From your loving Mama. 



LETTER III. 

ARRIVAL AT SARAWAK. 

MY DEAR BOY, March ' 1851 ' 

We embarked in a schooner called the 
Julia, on the 19th of June, 1848; and, after ten 
days' tedious sailing under a hot sun, we en- 
tered the Marotabas river, which leads into the 
Sarawak. You must now get the Atlas, and 
find the great island of Borneo, the largest in 
the Eastern Archipelago, and, indeed, in the 
world, except Australia. Its area is larger than 
that of France, and its shape is a kind of square. 
You will perceive that, considering its size, there 
are not many names of places marked on it, 
except along the coasts. What is known of the 
island is principally from ships visiting the 
mouths of the rivers: for, although both the 
English and Dutch have taken possession of 
different parts of the coast, the English have not 
ventured far inland, and the Dutch, who have 
explored it more, have kept their discoveries 

c 2 



20 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

very secret, lest the riches of the country should 
excite the cupidity of others; so that all which 
is known of the interior, is from the accounts of 
the natives themselves. They say that there are 
beautiful lakes lying amongst the mountains, and 
that the inhabitants are so numerous, that a man 
may walk across the country, and sleep in a 
fresh village every night. Perhaps you will 
wonder why no European has yet tried to do 
this; and so used I to do, till I knew how im- 
passable a new country is. If you ascend a high 
hill, from which you can see for many miles 
round, a great mass of forest stretches itself 
below your feet. The tops of the trees, growing 
close together, make one flat green mass without 
a break; except where the rivers, like silver 
threads, wind their way among the trees, and on 
their banks you may spy, here and there, clusters 
of huts, or blue smoke curling up in the air, 
which marks a human dwelling. The Dyaks, or 
inhabitants of the country, do indeed make a, 
way through the jungle, from one village to 
another, by laying down trunks of small trees, 
and clearing away the boughs on either side of 
this path : but it is very difficult walking for any 
but native feet. The poles, which they lay 



I) YAK BRIDGES. 21 

down, are round and slippery; the path, thus 
made, is not more than a foot wide, and often 
there are gaps, so that it requires a succession of 
jumps from one pole to another, rather than a 
steady pace ; and, if you miss your footing, you 
are very likely to go plurnp up to your waist in 
the swampy ground on either side. The Dyaks 
are so used to it, that they carry great weights 
over these slippery paths without difficulty, and 
over their bridges too, which are even worse 
than the paths. Imagine a few canes of bamboo, 
swinging in the air over a chasm, with perhaps 
a torrent of water roaring beneath, and nothing 
to ensure the safety of your footing, but, now 
and then, a thin bamboo, fastened to the rocks or 
trees, on either side, for a balustrade, to take 
hold of and you have a Dyak bridge. You 
must walk across it with your feet well turned 
out in the first position, and neither looking 
down at the perils below, nor nervously grasping 
your bamboo balustrade, which is not meant to 
be pulled at, but only to give a more comfortable 
look to the bridge. A Dyak would not think of 
touching it ; his feet lay hold of the bamboos 
like leather suckers, and he stalks across with a 
heavy laden tambuk (native basket) on his back, 



22 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

laughing at the poor Englishman, in shoes and 
stockings, behind him. 

The readiest way of exploring such a country 
as this is by ascending the rivers in boats. The 
rivers are many of them so large, that ships of 
great burthen might go up for many miles. In 
some of them, nature has placed an obstacle to 
this, by a great bar of sand, which stretches across 
the mouth of the river, and over which a ship can 
only float at high tide. In the Sakarran, Sa- 
dong, and other rivers, there is another danger 
to boats and small vessels, which we call the Bore, 
and the natives, Benna. It is an enormous wave, 
twelve feet high and more, which comes up with 
the first flood tide, and, with irresistible force, 
sweeps all before it. At Sakarran, there are only 
two places of refuge from this great wave known 
to the natives ; and it is highly dangerous for any 
boat to go up without a guide. Many lives have 
been lost, even amongst the Dyaks themselves, 
from carelessness about the Bore and its follower, 
a smaller wave, which they call Anak Benna, the 
child of the Bore. Just before one of Papa's visits 
to Sakarran^ two Dyak boats, ascending the river, 
were racing against one another. They had 
waited until both the Benna and Anak Benna 



FORESTS IN BORNEO. 23 

had passed by, and thought themselves quite safe. 
But Dyak boats, paddled at racing pace, are very 
swift, and, before they were aware of their danger, 
both boats were hurried into the vortex of the 
little Bore, and sucked under its waters, not one 
of the twenty men, who were on board, escaping 
with life. At the north of Borneo, we know 
that there are fine open plains, with herds of wild 
cattle on them. In another part Elephants have 
been seen; the natives bring their tusks for 
barter, which they find shed in the jungle. And, 
no doubt, there are many wonders of nature in 
parts where European foot never trod. There is 
something sublime in the thought of wide forests, 
plains, and rivers, where no human being lives 
where evil deeds never cursed the ground for 
man's sake and where the songs of birds, the 
chirping of insects, the rush of waters, and the 
sighing of the wind amongst the trees, are the 
only sounds which have broken the stillness of the 
air for hundreds of years, if not since the very cre- 
ation of the world : even such nooks there may be 
in this large island. But how much better it would 
be, if the voices of men, women, and children 
made these solitudes echo with songs of praise, 
or the longings of their hearts after Him who 



24 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

made them if words of kindness, and acts of 
mercy made the angels of God rejoice over the 
place ! Such blessings may one day dawn on the 
vast land of Borneo, when good men, with the love 
of God in their hearts, leave their Christian homes, 
for the sake of extending Christ's Kingdom all 
over the earth when they teach the native tribes 
to cultivate the good land which God has given 
them, and to turn the jungle into fields, pastures, 
and orchards, towns and villages, with churches 
and school-houses amongst the trees. 

"Well, as I said before, we entered the river of 
Sarawak on the 29th of June. Papa and the 
Captain of the Julia, got into a boat and rowed 
immediately up to the town, leaving us in the 
schooner to pursue our way more cautiously ; for 
there are several ugly rocks to be avoided, and 
the river winds so much, that it requires careful 
navigation. In some parts the scenery was very 
pretty. Trees grew down to the water's edge, 
some in flower, some in fruit. Here and there 
the trees were cut down, without the stumps 
being rooted out, that paddy (rice in the husk) 
might be planted. These clearings became more 
frequent as we approached the town, and cottages, 
built of wood and palm leaves, with plenty of 



THE FORT. 25 

little dark-skinned children peeping out, looked 
very snug by the river side. Then, over the trees, 
blue hills would rise so high, that they wore a 
nightcap of clouds, and lower wooded heights gave 
us a pleasant idea of the undulations of the ground. 
You may be sure our eyes strove to find beauties 
as we approached our new home ; and I never felt 
more contented, than when we turned the last 
corner of the reach before the town, and there lay 
Sarawak before us. 

The first object is the Fort, a white building 
with six formidable cannon, peeping out from the 
port-holes; and a soldier, pacing up and down the 
gravel in front, hails every arriving boat. He 
did not challenge us, however. We had been 
long looked for, and, at that time, the schooner 
'Julia' was the only means of regular monthly 
communication between Sarawak and Singapore. 
We were kindly welcomed at the house of Sir 
James Brooke, our English Rajah, although he 
was then at Singapore. How cool and airy the 
rooms of that wooden Bungalow seemed, after 
the hot close cabins of the schooner ! The roses 
and jessamines, which greAV luxuriantly under 
the verandahs, perfumed the air, and the flights 
of cooing blue and white pigeons, which had their 



26 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

dovecot near the house, gave us a gentle greet- 
ing. 

The town of Sarawak is so called after the main 
river on which it stands : but its proper name is 
Kuching, from a streamlet or feeder, which enters 
the Sarawak just below the fort, and bears this 
name Kuching, which in Malay means a cat why, 
I cannot say, except that the inhabitants are as 
fond of fish as cats generally are. On one side of 
the river is the Chinese Town, the Kling Bazaar, 
the Mosques, or Mahometan houses of prayer, 
the Court of justice, and most of the native dwell- 
ing-houses. On two gentle rising grounds, farther 
away from the river, now stand the Church and 
the Mission-house; but these grounds were co- 
vered with j ungle, when we reached Kuching. On 
the other side, amidst gardens, and fruit trees, 
stands the Rajah's house, and several other pretty 
Bungalows, belonging to English gentlemen, and 
in the back ground is a fine belt of jungle, and 
the blue hill of Santubong, nodding its head to 
the Rajah's house. There is no bridge over the 
river. Every body keeps boats, and every native 
can paddle himself or herself up or down the ri- 
ver, with their little short broad-shaped oars or 
paddles. Even little children, smaller than you, 



BO AT-K AGING. 27 

can jump into a boat and paddle; and, if the boat 
upsets, which it often does, with restless boys in 
it, the urchins swim by the side, until they can 
turn the boat right-side up, bale the water out, 
and jump in again. I hope you will learn to 
swim one day : it is not only a healthful exercise, 
but gives safety and confidence on the water. 

While I am talking of boats, I may as well 
give you an account of the annual boat-races 
here. They take place on the 1st of January, 
and are encouraged by the Rajah and all the 
English, as a good amusement and exercise for 
the Malays and Dyaks. For months before 
they are busy building racing-boats. There are 
always some new ones, but sometimes a boat 
gets a reputation for being a winner, and then 
she is in great request. Early in the morning, 
on that day, you may see boats, newly painted, 
with a few men in them, beating little gongs, 
which are sounded to collect the rowers. The 
largest boats are allowed to have any number of 
rowers sometimes as many as forty or fifty. 
The man, who sits at the stern, uses his paddle 
to steer with, as they have no rudder. By 
eleven o'clock all the crews are collected. Each 
Datu, or Officer of State, has his boat manned 



28 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

by his dependants, and those who live in his 
campong (or cluster of houses) : but the great 
men themselves are only spectators ; they do not 
row in the boats. They are all arranged in line 
abreast the Rajah's house, where a flag is flying, 
and from which a cannon fired gives the signal 
for starting. The distance is marked by a boat 
decked with flags, moored off the fort, in the 
middle of the river. Round this boat they have 
to turn, and the goal is the Rajah's wharf. As 
the clock strikes twelve the cannon is fired, and 
off set the boats at a wonderful pace. The 
paddles throw such a cloud of spray as to con- 
ceal the rowers. The men shout ; the lookers-on 
cry out, first to one, then to the other; some- 
times a boat runs foul of another, which fills 
with water, and you see thirty or forty men all 
sprawling in the river ; but, though by this they 
lose the race, they are soon all in the boat again, 
and ready for another start. When the winning 
boat arrives at the Rajah's steps for the prize- 
money, the men all throw up their paddles in 
the air, and yell ; I cannot call it a shout it so 
little resembles an English hurrah but it means 
the same thing. After this race of large boats 
succeed many others, with smaller and smaller 



BOAT-RACIKG. 29 

crews, until the last is a race of tiny sampans 
with one man in each. The final one, however, 
is another trial for all the big boats, which lost 
the first race. One man will often pull in several 
races; and, considering how little hard work a 
Malay is capable of, it is plain that more skill 
and dexterity, than strength, is employed in 
paddling: but they use all they have on this 
occasion. I have been twice present at these 
races, and admired the perfect good humour 
with which our Malays either win or lose; 
although they esteem the credit of winning as 
much as an English boat's crew would do. This 
day's sport serves to talk of throughout the 
year, and the winning boat is looked upon with 
great respect. 

Good bye, dear child, 

Your loving Mama, 

H. M'D. 



LETTER IV. 

THE MALAYS. 

MY DEAEEST CHAKLEY, April > 1851> 

Not many years ago, the very name of a 
Malay suggested the idea of a bad, cruel, and 
revengeful man, who, always wearing a sharp 
knife, called a cm, at his girdle, did not scruple 
to plunge it into the heart of any one who 
offended him. That great and good man, Sir 
Stamford Raffles, from his intimate knowledge of 
the Malays of Java and Sumatra, may be con- 
sidered as the first who set their character in a 
just and true light; and our own Rajah, Sir 
James Brooke, who treats all men, Malays, 
Dyaks, or Europeans, as brothers, has taught 
the world that a " Malay has as kind and suscep- 
tible a heart as an Englishman, and that, when 
well governed, and living at peace, they are 
amiable, fond of children, courteous to strangers, 
and grateful for kindness." It is true that they 
have some cunning in their disposition, and 



NEGLECT OF CHILDREN. 31 

that, occasionally, a Malay gives way to passion, 
till he becomes almost mad; and then, seizing 
any sword or cris that lies in his way, he will 
rush from his house, and maim, or kill, as many 
people as he meets. But this madness, which is 
called Amok, or, in English, " running a muck," 
is now very rare at Sarawak, since the Malays 
have been well governed. Formerly, injustice 
and oppression drove them to despair and des- 
perate actions. There is also, T think, another 
reason for this peculiar trait in the Malay cha- 
racter. The Malays indulge their children ex- 
cessively. I do not think they love them better 
than other parents, for true love does not lead to 
foolish indulgence: but they are an indolent 
people, and will not take the trouble of correct- 
ing their little ones; so that, if a child has 
naturally a violent temper, it is never checked, 
and, growing worse and worse, becomes at times 
a madness. I have seen a little Malay girl, in 
her rage, twist her hands in her mother's long 
hair, and pull it till the woman cried out with 
pain : yet, when I released her, she did not 
punish the naughty child, but kissed her, and 
indulged the very whim which caused this out- 
break of temper. Another day I saw a little 



32 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

boy in such a passion that he threw himself into 
the river, and there kicked and screamed, till I 
thought he would be drowned. But, when his 
father at last persuaded him to get into a boat, he 
did not rebuke him for his passion. Such chil- 
dren as these, if they grow up to be men and 
women, might be expected, if much offended, to 
run a muck ; for they have never been taught 
self-control. The Scripture says, " It is good for 
a man to bear the yoke in his youth." Be 
thankful, therefore, my dear child, that you are 
under the wise and gentle restraints of a Chris- 
tian education. 

The Malays live in houses made of the leaves 
of the nepa palm, and perched on poles, to take 
them off the ground or the water, for they are 
very fond of building where the tide will run 
under the house. This is one of their lazy 
habits; for the flooring of their rooms is made 
of an open lattice of laths, laid across beams 
through which they can sweep all the dirt of the 
house, and the tide, washing up, carries it away. 
Some of the rich men's houses, however, are 
better than these, since the Rajah has taught 
them to build with planked walls, to use sub- 
stantial posts instead of riibong palm stems, and 



HABITS OF THE MALAYS. 33 

shingles of balean, or iron-wood, which look 
something like English slates, instead of leaf- 
roofs. But, inside, most of the houses are very 
comfortable. You must not fancy that a house 
in this country is wretched, because it is made of 
leaves. On the contrary, it is cool and pleasant ; 
we want no shelter here, except from rain and 
sun, and nepa attaps keep both these out. The 
Malays use no heavy furniture: tables, chairs, 
bookcases, or bedsteads, are unknown wants to 
them. Nice white mats, spread on the floor 
piles of cushions to sit and lie on a few shelves 
perhaps and a great calico mosquito curtain, 
with very gay trimmings round the top, to sleep 
under are the extent of their wants. They 
have boxes to keep their clothes and treasures in 
wooden and brass trays, with lids gaily painted, 
to carry food pieces of bamboo to carry water. 
The bamboo is a large hollow cane, with a di- 
vision at every joint; so that it has only to be 
cut into lengths, to make all sorts of useful 
things. 

Kound their houses, the Malays plant a few 
cocoa-nut trees, and Pinang or Betel nuts. The 
Cocoa-nut gives them oil and milk. If they want 
milk from it, they grate the nut and mix it up 

D 



34 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

with water, until the water has a white milky 
appearance ; if oil, they boil this milk until the 
oil rises to the top, when they skim it off. This 
oil they burn for light, and fry their fish and 
cakes in it : they also steep sweet-scented flowers 
in it, to anoint their hair and their skins. Before 
the nut is ripe, and the kernel formed, it is 
full of a sparkling and most refreshing water, 
which all people, whether Malays or English, 
enjoy, as a cooling draught, on a hot day. The 
Betel Nut, which is a very tall and graceful 
palm, has a great bunch of yellow-husked nuts 
under its crown of leaves. The natives chew 
these nuts with lime, tobacco, and a hot aromatic 
leaf, called Sirih, which mixture turns their 
mouths of a bright red colour, like blood. It 
has a strong smell, but, I believe, a very sooth- 
ing effect ; and it is the occupation of all their 
leisure time, and the amusement of all their 
social parties, to chew it. But it is a nasty 
habit ; for a Malay, chewing Sirih, is constantly 
squirting red juice out of his mouth, and his 
upper lip is pushed out of shape by a lump of 
tobacco all which, added to a curious custom 
they have, of filing their teeth very short, and 
staining them black, makes his mouth as dis- 



MALAY FISHERMEN. 35 

agreeable a feature as it can well be. They like 
smoking tobacco, too, rolling it up in a strip of 
palm leaf; but they never drink wine, beer, or 
spirits. They are very moderate and simple in 
their food, living on rice, fish, vegetables, and 
fruits. Wild leaves out of the jungle furnish 
them with acid, or bitter salads, which they like : 
but the flesh of deer, goats, or chickens, is only 
an occasional delicacy. Pigs, ducks, and all 
creatures which the Jews were taught to con- 
sider unclean, are their abhorrence : if they wish 
to taunt another, they say, " He eats pork ;" and 
to be called a pig is a great insult to them. 

As the Malays live so much on fish, you may 
be sure they are clever fishermen. In the river 
they use a casting-net for this purpose. I have 
often watched them engaged in this graceful 
exercise. One man paddles the boat, while 
another stands at the prow, with the large fine 
net gathered in his hands. When he comes to a 
likely place in the river he poises himself so as 
to keep a firm footing, and throws the net, which 
falls in a wide circle on the water, and entangles 
everything within its space. Then he immediately 
begins to draw it in again, picking out the fish, 
or prawns, as he meets with them. Out at the 

D 2 



36 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

mouth of the river the Malays erect fishing- 
stakes, which they visit at every low tide, to take 
the fish caught in the net of rattan, which is 
spread between them. But, about twice in the 
year, there is a kind of fishing festival, which 
the Malays enjoy beyond everything, and in 
which the English do not hesitate to partake: 
this is called a tuba fishing. 

Tuba is the root of a climbing plant, which 
has a narcotic, stupifying property. The Malays 
collect a quantity of this root, and take it in 
their boats to the mouth of some river, two or 
three days before full moon, when there is a 
spring tide, that is to say, when there is the 
lowest and highest tide in the month. While 
the tide is ebbing, they are very busy mashing 
the tuba root in water, at the bottom of their 
boats. It makes a milky-looking fluid, which, 
just before the tide turns, they throw into the 
river. The flowing tide, bringing up the fish 
from the sea into the river, meets this strong 

' O 

dose of opiate, and the little fishes immediately 
float, stupified, on the surface of the water. 
Gradually the tuba sends the larger fish also into 
a trance; and, as soon as they float, the Malays 
dart upon them with long spears, transfix them ; 



MALAY CLOTHING. 37 

and throw them into their boats. This causes a 
most animated scene. The fish, feeling the 
wound of the spear, half wakes out of its 
lethargy, and plunges along the water, sometimes 
dragging the man out of his boat. Little boys, 
as small as you, Charley, are active in this sport ; 
and Papa saw a child run his spear at so large 
a fish, that he could not draw it into his boat ; 
but, after a grand battle, he jumped into the 
water, fairly clasped the big fish in his arms, and 
carried it off. A Malay will often catch from 
thirty to fifty good-sized fishes, besides smaller 
ones of all sorts, as one boat's prize; and, as 
there may be seventy boats at one fishing, you 
may imagine the number caught. The little 
ones are brought up in baskets full, and not 
counted. Then ensues a grand salting and dry- 
ing of fish in the sun. Their dose of tuba does 
not make them in the least unwholesome as 
food. 

The clothes worn by the Malay men and women 
are very graceful, and suitable to the climate. 
The men use a handkerchief of some dark colour, 
edged with gold lace or fringe, twisted into a tur- 
ban, round their heads loose trousers, of striped 
cotton or silk, according to the wealth of the 



38 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

wearer a white calico or silk jacket and a sa- 
rong or long scarf, sewn together at the ends, 
which the Malay women weave in pretty checks 
or tartans, gathered in graceful folds round the 
waist and, sticking up from this last, is the cm, 
without which no Malay gentleman would con- 
sider himself dressed, though the poorer sort 
sometimes wear a parang or long knife, for cut- 
ting jungle, in its stead. They use neither shoes 
nor stockings, nor feel the want of them in this 
warm climate; for the soles of their feet get as 
thick as the soles of our shoes, from continually 
walking on them. I have often envied them the 
ease, with which they go with bare feet over 
slippery places, holding on with their toes, which 
are like another set of fingers to them. Never- 
theless, I must confess, that the exposure of the 
feet to rough walking sometimes gives them sad 
cracks in the thick-skinned sole and heel, which 
are very tedious to cure, and painful, too, to bear. 
So, after all, our civilised ways are best. 

The Malay women often wear very gay dresses 
of purple satin, and bright silk sarongs inter- 
woven with gold thread. Their jackets are 
almost covered in front with gold ornaments, and 
the sleeves with gold buttons, made like flowers. 



APPEARANCE OF THE MALAYS. 39 

As for the children, until they are five or six 
years of age, they only wear clothes on great oc- 
casions, unless a string of silver coins, or silver 
anklets, can be called clothes, However, a little 
girl is quite dressed enough, if she has a sarong 
fastened round her waist ; and a boy, if he wears 
cotton trousers. This light clothing, so suitable 
to the climate, saves them a great deal of trouble. 
They constantly jump into the water, and have a 
swim or game of fun, without fear of spoiling 
what they wear. Men, women, and children, are 
all great bathers; some of their prayers are re- 
peated, as they stand in the river, washing their 
faces, noses, teeth, &c. : for by this means Maho- 
met, their Lawgiver and Prophet, ensured the 
cleanliness of his disciples, which is even more 
necessary in a warm country than in England. 

In appearance, the Malays are not much fa- 
voured by nature. I remember thinking them 
very ugly when I first arrived at Sarawak ; and 
that the Orang-Utans, of whom they are so fond, 
must be first cousins of theirs, from their resem- 
blance. However, I wronged the Malays; for 
they have nearly all well-shaped heads, and wide 
foreheads, which no kind of monkey can possess. 
They have also a gentle and intelligent expres- 



40 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

sion ; their noses are rather flat and too small, 
and the lower jaw advances, which gives them 
somewhat of the Orang-Utan look. Their figures 
are slight, but they walk well, and the higher 
classes are graceful and dignified in their move- 
ments : indeed, the manners of all are free from 
rudeness, and even the poorest boatmen or fisher- 
men are as light-hearted and merry as children. 
They enjoy a joke, and, being all in easy circum- 
stances, with all the necessaries and some of the 
luxuries of life, and no hard toil either for their 
heads or their hands, I think we may consider 
them a happy people. In my next, I will tell 
you about their religion. 



LETTER V. 

THE RELIGION OF THE MALAYS. 

May, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

The Malays are by religion Mahometans. 
A Mahometan believes in the one True and Great 
GOD ; but he thinks that our Saviour JESUS CHRIST 
was only a Prophet, like Daniel or Isaiah, and 
that Mahomet was the last and greatest of all 
Prophets, who wrote a book, called the Koran, 
which they read and believe, as we do the Bible. 
Mahomet gave them a great many laws in the 
Koran, some good, some bad amongst others, 
the directions about food, drink, and bathing, 
which I mentioned in a former letter : these were 
certainly good on the whole, for strong drinks, 
and indulgence in eating, are very unhealthy, es- 
pecially in a warm climate, such as Arabia, where 
Mahomet lived, or Sarawak, where we live. The 
Malays have a house of prayer, or Mosque, at 
Sarawak, and the Klings, who are Mahometans 
of another sect, have one also. They are much 



42 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

more attentive to their religion, since we came 
here, than they used to be before. Some years 
ago, the Mosque had almost fallen to decay, and 
the people were not at all disposed to give money 
to build it up again ; but now the Mosque is quite 
a good-looking building, and they have lately 
surmounted it with a great brass ball, which 
glitters in the sun, and draws all eyes to it. Since 
our church-bell has called the few Christians in 
the place twice every day to public worship, the 
Hadjis, or Priests, have insisted on their people 
also attending daily service in the Mosque, and 
fined them in rice and fowls, if they failed in the 
due observance of their stated hours of prayer; 
and now you hear, before and after sunrise, and 
before and after sunset, a man calling from the 
top of the Mosque, in Arabic ' It is the hour of 
prayer : there is but one God, and Mahomet is 
His Prophet.' This is their confession of faith, as 
the Apostles' Creed is ours. 

At sunset, you may see the Malays, who hap- 
pen to be on the river at the time, praying in their 
boats, kneeling down on their praying-mats, pros- 
trating their foreheads, and rising again several 
times, their faces turned towards Mecca, where 
is the sacred tomb of their prophet. Meanwhile, 



RELIGION OF THE MALAYS. 43 

rhey repeat Arabic prayers, which by the bye, 
they do not understand, nor the Koran either, 
except such parts as the Hadjis have learnt to ex- 
plain to them ; for it was one of Mahomet's laws, 
that the Koran, being written in the purest Ara- 
bic, could not be translated into other languages, 
without being spoilt. What a contrast to our 
Holy Scriptures, which are, perhaps, the only 
Book in the world, which is beautiful in all lan- 
guages, and applicable to every nation of man- 
kind, as we might expect God's message to be ! 
Mahomet taught his religion first to his own peo- 
ple, the Arabians ; but he told them not to keep 
it to themselves, but to become missionaries all 
over the earth. So, after his death, as they were 
a very strong and warlike people, they over-ran 
all the neighbouring countries, and obliged their 
inhabitants, whom they overcame in battle, to 
embrace their religion, at the edge of their sharp 
swords. Their prisoners only escaped with their 
lives, by becoming converts to their faith 'There 
is one God, and Mahomet is His Prophet.' 

Any man, who has made a pilgrimage to Mecca, 
a city in Arabia where Mahomet lived, and has 
there learnt certain forms of prayer and passages 
of the Koran, becomes a Priest, or Hadji, and so 



44 LETTEKS FKOM SARAWAK. 

the teachers are often nearly as ignorant as the 
scholars. This pilgrimage to Mecca is another 
of Mahomet's laws, which he intended to be uni- 
versal ; but it is easy to see, that, when countries 
far from Arabia embraced his faith, the in- 
habitants could not all make such a distant and 
fatiguing journey : the poor would want money, 
the sickly strength, to perform it, and the occupa- 
tions of many would prevent so long an absence. 
Thus when men make laws in religious matters, 
they are sure to become hard and painful 
penances; but God's 'yoke is easy and His burden 
light.' Mecca was, even before Mahomet's time, 
considered a 'holy place, and had a Caaba, or 
temple, in it, which was said to have been built 
by Abraham and his son Ishmael. There is a 
black stone in this temple, on which they pretend 
to show the print of Abraham's foot, and here too, 
they say, Abraham offered his son as a sacrifice, 
in obedience to God's command : only they think 
that Ishmael, not Isaac, was the beloved son 
offered. This tradition arises from their being 
descendants of Ishmael, and therefore wishing 
to do him honour. It is astonishing how many poor 
Mahometans manage to make the pilgrimage to 
Mecca. They endure the greatest hardships 



RELIGIOUS FASTING. 45 

from heat and starvation, in little wretched ves- 
sels, to reach this blessed place. Many of them 
die of want or disease : but those, who live to re- 
turn to their own land, are treated with respect, 
and constitute, as I said before, the schoolmasters 
of the children, and teachers of their religion. 
They marry, bury, and circumcise, as our clergy- 
men marry, bury, and baptize. They conduct 
the prayer-meetings, and preside at the great 
feast, which takes place once a year, when the 
month of fasting is over. This holy month of 
fasting and prayer is one of the most important 
rites of the Mahometan religion, and very strictly 
observed : no person, arrived at man's estate, is 
allowed to taste food or drink, while the sun is 
above the horizon. 

At Sarawak, the sun rises at six o'clock and 
sets at six o'clock, with only a few minutes' va- 
riation throughout the year. We have no long 
and short days, no hours of twilight, as you have 
in England ; because we live just at the middle, 
or broadest part of the earth, which always shows 
the same face to the sun. (You will understand, 
one day, what is meant by living near the Equa- 
tor. ) For these twelve hours, from six to six, 
our Malays eat nothing, nor drink even water, 



46 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

nor chew their favourite Betel-nut and Sirih, nor 
smoke. How they watch for the sunset, you 
may fancy ! Last summer, Papa, some friends, 
and I, went an excursion up the river during 
the fasting month. We had two boats, one 
pulled by nine boys, the other by seven men. 
The boys did not fast, but ate fruit, and drank, 
when they were thirsty ; but the crew of men 
tasted nothing, and, by the time we reached the 
Battu Tikus (rat stones) by the river's side, where 
we staid the night, these poor fellows were quite 
exhausted. They began to get their food ready 
long before they might eat it ; and, when the pots 
of rice were cooked, and the fish, and little 
messes they ate with it, all prepared, they sat on 
their heels round the feast, watching the sun. I 
was also sitting with my watch in my hand, 
ready to call out when it told six ; and it was a 
pleasure to see them eat their meal, having, as 
they thought, fulfilled the day's painful duty. 
They rose again before the sun, to eat another 
slight meal, and so get through the next day. 
But you may always see that the men get thin- 
ner and paler, even through their dark skins, at 
the end of the fasting month ; and Papa says that 
at that time many. come to him for physic, whose 



MALAY PRAYER MEETING. 47 

ailments are entirely owing to their rigorous fast- 
ing. Besides fasting, during this month, they 
have frequent prayer-meetings at night. The 
men all stand round the room or rnosque, where- 
in the meeting takes place ; the Hadji stands in 
the middle. Then he begins to say slowly, in 
Arabic, the name of God "Allah-il- Allah." The 
men all repeat with him r but they gradually say 
it faster and faster, till, at last, the words are not 
audible, only a kind of jerk in their voice : they 
never stop, until quite exhausted, and some even 
fall on the floor insensible from fatigue. What 
senseless prayer is this ! It reminds one of the 
priests of Baal, in Elijah's time, who called upon 
the name of their God, from morning until even- 
ing ; and in their excitement cut themselves with 
knives, so that the blood gushed out upon them : 
"but none answered" nor can we think that such 
prayers are pleasing to God, who looks at our 
hearts. 

There is one more peculiarity in the Mahome- 
tan religion, which I must mention, because it 
influences their character very much. They be- 
lieve that every thing that happens to them, 
sickness or sorrow, good or bad fortune, was 
decreed before the world was made, and t at 



48 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

nothing that they can do will change it. This 
makes them consider all exertion, or painstaking, 
useless ; and their whole religion only a submis- 
sion to God's unbending will. The other day, 
one of the Datu's children was taken ill in the 
night, and in a few hours it died. The Datu 
was very grieved ; but when he was asked, why 
he did not take the child to the doctor, or try 
any remedies for it, he said, "What was the use? 
no doubt God had called the child, and he must 
go." It is, indeed, true, that God orders all that 
happens to us, of joy and grief. But He does so, 
to make us act for ourselves, that by our exer- 
tions, our prayers, our faith in Him, we may 
turn our sorrows to blessings, and wake our slow 
hearts from the sleep of selfishness to the ac- 
tivity of love. The Mahometans repeat prayers 
five times in a day. One of these prayers is 
called the "prayer of Jesus," but it is not what we 
call the Lord's Prayer. They say that Christ is 
to come again at the end of the world, and judge 
all men, and that, after the judgment, all man- 
kind will believe the true religion, or Islam. 
Here we see a glimmering of truth ; for we are 
told in the Bible, that the time will come, when 



RELIGIOUS FASTING. 49 

'the Earth shall be full of the knowledge of the 
Lord as the waters cover the sea'. 

Before I close this letter, I must tell you how 
the Mahometans may become examples to us. 
I think we must admire 1st, their constant re- 
collection of God in frequent prayer; 2nd, their 
self denial in the Fasting Month; 3rd, their 
charity, for they consider it a great duty to give 
alms to the poor. Mahometans have often had 
cause to say of Christians living amongst them. 
' These men neither pray nor fast ; such duties 
are evidently no part of their religion.' I trust 
this will never be said at Sarawak. "We have 
now a beautiful Church, and the bell calls us 
there, to worship God, at six o'clock every morn- 
ing, and at five every evening. Neither is there 
anything, in this quiet happy place, to prevent 
us from thus living in God's presence ; for we are 
out of the hurry and bustle of the world, and 
can so apportion our time, as not to be overbur- 
dened by the cares, or the pleasures, of this life. 
When you are older, you will like to read the life 
of Mahomet, and the history of his followers, 
who were great warriors, and some of them great 
and noble men. 

E 



LETTER VI. 

THE PRODUCTIONS OF BORNEO. 

July, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

Borneo is a country rich in some of the 
most valuable productions of nature. In the 
hills there are mines of iron, tin, and antimony- 
ore, a valuable and scarce mineral, used chiefly 
in the manufacture of type for printing. There 
are, no doubt, stores of gold, too, in the hills; 
for the mountain-streams wash down gold-dust, 
and small fragments of the pure metal, into the 
plains, where the Chinese collect it, by washing 
the soil in little ditches, which carry off the 
lighter earth, and leave the gold at the bottom 
of the ditch. 

Diamonds are constantly found. Most Malays 
wear diamond rings on their fingers, and the 
rich men present their wives with a set of dia- 
mond studs for their jackets, or with earrings 
made like studs, to fasten into the ear by a little 
screw nut. A favorite mode of borrowing money 
amongst the Malays, is to pawn their wives' gold 



TREES OF BORNEO. 51 

and diamond ornaments, which they redeem 
when the trading venture proves successful. 
They constantly pay for goods in gold-dust in- 
stead of money. The mode some Dyaks adopt 
of measuring an amas of dust, value one dollar, 
is by stuffing one nostril with it, which they 
then dexterously blow out again; their wide 
open nostrils make this an easier operation than 
we should find it. 

Besides these valuable minerals Borneo fur- 
nishes a peculiar kind of camphor, which is use- 
ful in medicine. It is found in the stem of a 
large forest tree, and the Chinese are willing to 
pay an enormous price for it. The rattan, which 
makes the bottoms of chairs and sofas, is a 
climbing palm, growing in Bornean forests, and 
sent by ship-loads to Europe. But the king of 
the jungle is the tapang tree: its magnificent 
stem is often more than 150 feet high, before it 
branches; and the natural buttresses, at the 
bottom of the stem, are thick enough to furnish 
planks of sufficient size to make a billiard table. 

Mr. C has a table, made out of one of these 

planks, which will dine fourteen people comfort- 
ably. The wood is like dark old oak, and takes 
a high polish. 



52 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

The Dyaks, however, do not often fell the 
tapang trees ; for on their summits the wild bees 
build their nests : from whence they can overlook 
the fields of flowers, which the lower trees of 
the jungle spread before them continually, and 
which help them to make, I think, the finest fla- 
voured honey in the world, and this honey, and 
the bees-wax, are great articles of commerce. The 
Dyaks mount these enormous tapang trees, and 
rob the nests of honey and wax quite regard- 
less of the stings they get in the operation. 
Indeed, it is considered a good exercise for the 
courage and endurance of the Dyak boys, who 
are as proud as little Spartans of bearing the 
pain without complaint. Before they ascend the 
tree they make a blazing fire underneath ; for, 
say they, " the bee is fond of gold, and, when he 
espies the flames and sparks, he thinks a hoard 
of treasure is beneath the tree, and leaves his 
nest to fetch it." Doubtless, the wood smoke 
drives the bees out of their nest. 

Large quantities of bees-wax are exported 
from Borneo every year, passing from the hands 
of the Dyaks to the Malays, who give them in 
exchange salt, or brass rings, gongs, etc. The 
Sago Palm, which grows luxuriantly in the 



GUTTA PERCHA. 53 

forests, furnishes us with wholesome food. Sago 
is the pith of this tree, taken out before it 
flowers and fruits; for the flower exhausts the 
nourishing pith, and 1 the tree decays when the 
fruit is ripe. Having cut out the pith, and 
washed it, the natives pack it up in little pottle- 
shaped parcels, and bury them in the mud by 
the sides of the rivers. Here it undergoes a 
process of fermentation, which would make most 
people, who smelt it, fancy it was no longer fit 
for use. Not so, however. After a time the 
packets of sago are sent to Singapore, where 
they are thrown into troughs of water, and 
washed over and over again, until the seemingly 
rotten mass becomes a pure powder, which is 
then forced through sieves, and falls into the 
little round grains, which are called Pearl Sago, 
and which often make you a nice pudding. Some 
Dyak tribes, in the interior of the country, live 
on cakes made of sago, in preference to rice. 

Gutta Percha, which is useful in making 
waterproof pipes, surgical splints, picture frames, 
and all sorts of ornamental furniture, is the gum 
of a fine forest tree in Borneo. The tree is 
obliged to be cut down, to get at the Gutta, 
which is inside. When the hill was cleared, on 



54 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

which our church now stands, one of these beau- 
tiful trees was left for a time; it took five people, 
with their arras spread out, to encircle its trunk ; 
and I hoped we might make a seat around it, 
whence we could watch the carpenters building. 
One evening, after Papa and I had been walking 
round our favourite tree, and considering whether 
it would endanger the people working at the 
church, a fearful storm of lightning came on, 
and, as we stood admiring the bright flashes, we 
saw one strike the Gutta Percha tree, making a 
cleft in it all down the stem. After this, we 
dared not leave it standing so near the church, 
lest another storm should bring it down on the 
building; so we had it felled. Its downfall dis- 
turbed a number of curious bats, with little 
trunks like elephants, who lived in a hollow part 
of it. It was well we cut it down, for the inside 
was much decayed, and it could not have stood 
long. 

Tortoise Shell is another article of commerce, 
which Europeans value, and which is found on 
our coasts. But, besides these things, there 
are some treasures in Borneo, which are only 
esteemed by the Chinese, but which are no less 
articles of commerce for our Malays. Such is 



EDIBLE NESTS. 55 

the edible swaUoufa nest, which the Chinese buy 
for its weight in silver or twenty dollars a catty 
(pound and a quarter). These little birds build 
in large communities in the interior of caves. 
Their nests are fastened against the walls of the 
caves, and are collected by the Dyaks twice a 
year. They are like woven isinglass; some al- 
most as clear and transparent looking, which are 
then termed white nests others more dirty and 
mixed with tiny feathers, which are less valuable 
and called black nests. You remember, Charley, 
my sending you one of these delicate little nests, 
in a letter; but I fear it did not reach you in 
good preservation. The Chinese make them into 
soup, which they imagine to be more strengthen- 
ing than any other food : but, as it has no fla- 
vour, it is not especially prized by the English. 

There is also a certain sea-slug, called trepang 
which the natives collect, and sell to the Chinese 
for soups. And another favourite article of com- 
merce is blacham, a condiment, which both Chi- 
nese and Indians esteem as a flavouring for their 
meals of rice, and which consists of shrimps and 
small fish, dried in the sun, and mashed in a 
mortar to a paste. It tastes like the strong 
caviare, which the Greeks are so fond of. Our 



56 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

Malays buy all these precious things, and many 
others, which I cannot remember, of the country 
people, or Dyaks. They then freight their ves- 
sels, and carry them to Singapore, or Java, or 
Bruni, and bring back, in exchange, china, glass, 
brass vessels, gongs, and musical instruments, for 
which the Javanese are famous. 

Indeed, the Malays have quite a genius for 
trading. Two or three Nakodas, as the mer- 
chants are called, join together to build a large 
boat. When finished, a great many of their 
friends volunteer to accompany them, in a tra- 
ding voyage; each man brings some goods, or 
gold dust, which he wants to barter or sell, until 
a sufficient cargo is collected. For the privilege 
of trading in her, the men give their services as 
sailors, and bring their provisions for the voyage ; 
so that the owners have no expenses of manning 
or victualling their ship. Every Malay knows 
something of the sea, and the simple manage- 
ment of their mat sails. They seldom venture 
far out of sight of land. The seas are dotted 
with islands ; and these, and the stars, serve as 
guides for their voyage. 

The first year we lived at Sarawak, two Xako- 
das built a larger vessel, than had yet been at- 



THE S'REE SARAWAK. 57 

tempted by native workmen. She was called the 
* Beauty of Sarawak,' (S'ree Sarawak,) and Papa 
often paid her a visit, while building giving the 
Malays the benefit of his advice and criticism. 
When she was finished, the Nakodas made a 
feast, and invited the English of Sarawak on 
board, where they were entertained with cakes 
and sweetmeats ; as I did not go, they sent me a 
tray of sweetmeats afterwards. Papa made 
Nakoda Mahomet, and Nakoda Sie a present of a 
telescope ; and I copied them a map of the coast 
of Java, whither they directed their first voyage. 
We were much interested in the success of this 
vessel, which has since made the fortunes of these 
two merchants. But there are now many others, 
even better built and larger, (the S'ree was about 
150 tons burthen,) for Sarawak is becoming a 
thriving place. Last year the value of its exports 
amounted to 150,125 dollars; and vessels from 
Singapore, the Natunas Islands, (whence we get 
Cocoa Nuts and oil,) the Dutch Settlements of 
Sambas, Pontianak, Java, Bali, the North-west 
coast of Borneo, Labuan, Rhio, and Tringanu, 
imported, to Sarawak, goods to the value of 
197,166 dollars, under British, Dutch, Native 
and Sarawakiari flags. 



58 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

The Sarawak flag is a red and purple cross, 
out of Sir James Brooke's armorial shield, on a 
yellow ground, yellow being the royal colour of 
Borneo. It was given by the Rajah to his people, 
on his return from England, in 1848, and I re- 
member well, what a grand occasion it was. 
H. M. S. Meander was at Sarawak at the time, 
and their band played 'God Save the Queen,' as 
the flag was, for the first time, hoisted on the 
flag-staff before the Rajah's house. All the 
English were assembled there, and a great crowd 
of natives, Malays and Dyaks, whom the Rajah 
addressed in the Malay language, telling them 
that the flag, which he had that day given them, 
would, he hoped, be their glory and protection, 
as the flag of England had long been hers. He 
said that, by the help of his native country, he 
would engage to clear the seas of the Archipe- 
lago of the pirates, who prevented their trading 
vessels from venturing along the coasts, and, 
when this was accomplished, he trusted to see 
Sarawak become a rich and thriving place, with 
all the blessings of peace, civilisation, and re- 
ligion. A great deal more than this, and much 
more to the purpose than I can remember, our 
Rajah said that day to his people; for his heart 



PIRATES. 59 

was full of desires for their welfare, and hope 
and trust in the English Government, to aid 
him in the accomplishment of his designs. The 
Malays listened with love and reverence to his 
wortls, and, from my house across the river, I 
could hear their acclamations. Since then, the 
Sarawak flag flies, not only at the Fort at the 
entrance of the town, but at the mast of many 
a vessel, laden with Bornean treasures, on all the 
coasts of the Archipelago. I must tell you in a 
future letter about the pirates, who, in 1848, 
were a constant terror to our little trading ves- 
sels, and to those of all other native states, and 
how the Rajah fulfilled his promise to his people, 
of punishing these sea robbers, and forcing them 
to live at peace with their neighbours. 

For to day, good bye. 



LETTER VII. 

THE DYAKS THEIR RELIGION. 

August 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHILD, 

You know as well as I do, that God made 
all men, as well as all creatures and things. We 
should feel sure of this, even if the Bible had 
not told us all about it ; because our common 
sense assures us that nothing can make itself, so 
that, what men are not wise and strong enough 
to make, must have been created by some Person 
more wise and powerful than any man. You 
know that " to create," means " to make some- 
thing out of nothing ;" and that is what no man 
can do. He may join created things together, 
or he may even discover some new substance by 
doing so ; as, for instance, clear transparent glass 
is made by melting sand, flint, and the ashes of 
sea- weed (potash), in a hot fire; and so, too, 
paper is made by washing old rags in water : but 
without the sand, flint, and potash, no man could 
make glass; and without the rags, or something 
like them, paper could not be made. 

We may also find out, that some things in the 
earth are made, as it were, by other things. 



DYAK RELIGION. 61 

Thus, coal is known to be old forests, which 
have been covered with water for many ages. 
Sand is the dust of stone, worn by the action of 
the water. The fine black mould, which lies on 
the surface of the earth, and nourishes the roots 
of trees, flowers, and grasses, is made by a mix- 
ture of all sorts of dead vegetables and animal 
matter, and the effects of sun, rain, and air 
upon them. But, though I might add to these 
many other things, which Nature makes and 
man cannot, there must always remain some, 
which have been created, some time or other, by 
God. Such are light, heat, air, water, all living 
creatures, and man. 

Savage nations, who have no learning, and 
never heard of the Bible, know this, and they 
call God " The Great Spirit," " The Creator," or 
by some other word, which means that He made 
them, and all they see. The Bible explains this 
to us ; for it says that, when God made man, 
" He breathed into him, and man became a 
living soul." The voice of God's Spirit speaks 
of Him, to the soul of every one : so that, if we 
lived in a wild country, without a book to teach 
us, we should sometimes feel obliged to look up 
to Heaven, and worship our Maker: we should 
feel that, as He made us, He can take care of us, 



62 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

and do us good or harm as He wills ; and these 
feelings we call natural religion, because Nature 
without, and God's voice within, teach it to us. 

The religion of the Dyaks, by which name we 
call the numerous tribes of people, who inhabit 
this island, and about whom I now intend to 
write to you, is chiefly this. They know that 
some great Spirit made them, and the country 
they live in; they feel sure that the rice, fruit, 
fish, and animals, which form their food, are 
His gifts ; therefore they pray for His blessing 
when they sow the seed in their Paddy fields. 
They call God Tuppa, Jeroang, or Dewatah, 
which is a very old word belonging to the San- 
scrit language a language so ancient, that it is 
no longer spoken by any nation in the world, 
except that some learned people of India use it 
in arguing, as formerly learned Europeans did 
the Latin language. But there are still many 
books to be found written in Sanscrit, and from 
it most eastern languages are derived. 

Thus far the religion of the Dyaks is right, 
and even farther; for they have a firm belief in 
evil spirits (antoos), to whom they ascribe all 
the sickness and misfortune which happen to 
them. But at this point they depart from the 
truth, and become superstitious : for they do not 



HEAD-TAKING. 63 

know that God is stronger than the devil; so 
they make offerings and prayers to the antoos, to 
avert their wrath, and keep them in good temper. 
From this false, cowardly, fear of evil spirits or 
devils, no doubt arises the Dyak custom of head- 
taking. If a man loses his wife or child, he 
puts on a kind of mourning, of common coarse 
clothes, and sets out to take as many human 
heads as he thinks an equivalent for his misfor- 
tune; thus he hopes to propitiate the evil spirit 
of death. Before he has sown the seed in his 
farm he seeks more heads, which he brings home, 
fastened about his own neck, to rejoice over 
when his harvest is reaped. The evil spirits 
they think are pleased with blood. When a 
journey or any enterprise is to be undertaken, a 
fowl is killed, and all those to be engaged in it 
are touched with the blood of the sacrifice. At 
a feast, the white fowl's blood is sprinkled on the 
posts of the house, reminding one of the houses 
of the Israelites, which the avenging angel passed 
over, when sprinkled with the blood of the 
Paschal Lamb. 

When the Dyaks build a new house, the first 
post to support it is driven through the body of 
a live fowl, and they say that, some generations 
back, a young girl was thus horribly empaled 



64 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

instead of a chicken, to insure the prosperity of 
the new house and its inmates. As I said before, 
the custom of head-taking was, no doubt, derived 
from the notion of propitiating the evil spirits 
by blood. But now the Dyaks consider a head 
taker in the same glorious light? with which we 
regard a successful warrior. This ghastly pre- 
sent of a human head, is the favourite love- 
token which a young man lays at the girl's feet 
whom he desires to marry, and which she accepts 
with favour : for an old legend of the Sakarrans 
tells her, that the daughter of their great ances- 
tor, who resides in heaven, near the Evening 
Star, refused to marry until her betrothed 
brought her a present worth her acceptance. 
The man went into the jungle and killed a deer, 
which he presented to her; but the fair lady 
turned away in disdain. He went again, and 
returned with a mias, the great monkey who 
haunts the forest ; but this present was not more 
to her taste. Then, in a fit of despair, the lover 
went abroad, and killed the first man that he 
met, and throwing his victim's head at the 
maiden's feet, he exclaimed at the cruelty she 
had made him guilty of; but, to his surprise, she 



DYAK WEDDING CUSTOM. 65 

smiled, and said, that now he had discovered the 
only gift worthy of herself. 

To this day the women of this tribe incite the 
men to this horrible practice. It matters not 
whether the head be of man, woman, or child, 
enemy or stranger; but a head they must have 
for a wedding present. You see, my child, how 
far astray from goodness, gentleness, and mercy, 
mankind have wandered when they have for- 
gotten the Great God their Maker, and wor- 
shipped Evil instead of Good. 

Not long ago Papa paid a visit to the Lundu 
Dyaks, whom we consider the most intelligent of 
the Sarawak tribes. The wife of the Orang 
Kaya's (chief's) son was very ill, and both she 
and her little infant were in great danger of 
dying. Papa told Kalong, her husband, that he 
could relieve her, and give her physic : but the 
old women, who seem to be the doctors of the 
tribe, said, " they must drive the antoos away 
first." So they commenced a horrible noise 
with gongs and drums, shrieks and yells; they 
then rushed on the roof of the house, to drive, 
as they said, the antoos off the premises ; and it 
was not until the baby died, and the poor mother 
grew worse and worse, and exhausted by the din 

F 



66 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

they made, that they admitted Papa to give her 
any assistance. Besides these antoos Papa has 
heard the Dyaks talk of spirits they call Triu, 
who, they fancy, inhabit the jungle, and espe- 
cially the summits of the hills and mountains. 
If an Englishman wishes to make an excursion 
to the top of a high hill, he has great difficulty 
in persuading a Dyak to accompany him. Should 
he consent to go, however, he will not help to 
cut down trees there, nor cook food, nor throw 
stones down the hill, lest he should offend the 
spirits, who, he believes, live there, and who, he 
vainly imagines, will assist him in war, if he 
does not disturb them, by appearing in the shape 
of Dyak men, and fighting at his side. Mingled 
with these Triu, they suppose, are savage, malig- 
nant spirits, called by them Kamang, who also 
accompany them to their wars, for the purpose 
of enjoying the carriage. They are believed to 
drink human blood, and to inspire those who 
worship them with desperate valour. These 
Kamang are, however, enemies of the Triu. 

Beside these, the Dyaks have endless super- 
stitions about charms and magic. They will not 
sow their paddy until the voice of a certain bird 
is heard in the woods ; and, when they go on any 



DYAK SUPERSTITIONS. 67 

expedition, if one of these omen birds sings 
behind them, they return, convinced that misfor- 
tune will overtake them if they proceed. On 
each of their farms they cultivate a certain white 
lily, over which they build a shed, and to which, 
as to something sacred, they present offerings of 
fruit, rice, etc., fancying that their paddy will 
not grow well unless they do so. They can give 
no reason for this, and many other foolish cus- 
toms, except that " such was the custom of their 
ancestors." Notwithstanding all these ignorant 
fancies, the Dyaks retain their belief in one 
Great God and Father of all men ; they acknow- 
ledge that they are foolish and ignorant, and 
that the religion of the white men, as they call 
Christianity, is a truer and better one than their 
own. They are, with the exception of the pirate 
tribes, a gentle, kindly people, simple as children, 
and inclined to love and reverence all men whom 
they see to be wiser and more civilised than 
themselves. I will tell you, in my next letter, 
something of their houses, dress, and manners. 



F 2 



LETTER VIII. 

THE DYAKS THEIR HISTORY, MANNERS, AND 
CUSTOMS. 

September, 1851. 

MY DEAREST BOY, 

The Dyaks are supposed to be the Abori- 
gines, or first inhabitants, of Borneo ; when they 
came there they do not know, nor from whence. 
They have, doubtless, for many generations past, 
followed exactly the same manners and customs ; 
for they have a great reverence for their ances- 
tors, and consider it reason enough for many a 
foolish habit, that such was the custom of their 
forefathers. We generally divide the Dyaks into 
Land and Sea tribes, but the Orang-Laut (people 
of the sea), do not allow that they are Dyaks at 
all, by this name designating only the inland 



DYAK COSTUMES. 69 

tribes. Besides this distinction they must be 
divided into tribes, according to the locality in 
which they live. Thus the country of Sarawak 
possesses as many as thirty-two tribes of Dyaks, 
each tribe having a chief, or rich man, as the 
title Orang-Kaya signifies. This chief is elected 
by his people, and, although the dignity is gene- 
rally hereditary, he may be deposed, if such is 
the will of the tribe. Each tribe has its own 
territory and particular farms, which they culti- 
vate by turns, allowing them to lie fallow in the 
intervening years: for in that country, where 
there is room and to spare for the inhabitants, 
they know nothing of the rotation of crops. 

Rice is the food of all, and a little Indian corn, 
or millet, may be added by way of luxury. 
Some of them grow tobacco, of which they are 
very fond; and cotton, which they dye, and 
weave into the thick jackets and scarfs of which 
their dress consists. A Dyak man's working 
dress is only a long scarf of this cotton, or the 
bark of a tree, beaten into a kind of cloth, 
wound about his body. On his head another 
piece of bark-cloth is twisted, sticking up on 
either side like ears. The scarf hangs down like 
a tail before and behind, so that I have no doubt 



70 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

old stories of wild men with tails, which may be 
found in some travels, have originated from this 
costume. These two articles of clothing are 
common to all Dyaks ; but the various tribes are 
distinguishable by their different ornaments. 
Thus the Sakarrans wear a bracelet of white 
shell round the upper part of the arm; the 
Sarebas, a great number of brass rings along the 
shell of their ears; our Sarawak tribes value 
white beads as necklaces ; some wear brass rings 
all the way up both the arm and leg, leaving 
only the elbow free : others have many twists of 
rattan, stained black or red, round their waists; 
the women a kind of basket-stays of this mate- 
rial. The inland tribes are many of them tat- 
tooed. Their wardresses consist of a jacket of 
the native thick cotton, closely wadded, a head- 
dress of feathers of the rhinoceros hornbill, and 
tufts of hair dyed, of various colours, which ore 
set in a kind of coronet of beads. They use, as 
weapons of war, spears, the points of which are 
hardened by fire; swords, made some for the 
right, and some for the left hand ; and the sum- 
pit an, a long blow pipe of wood, which throws 
poisoned darts, to a distance of thirty or forty 
yards. They also carry wooden shields to de- 



HOUSES OF THE DYAKS. 



71 



fend themselves from the spears of their ene- 
mies. 




DYAK BLOWING SUMPITAN. 



When I send you Papa's journal of his trip 
up the Rejang river, you will there find more 
minute descriptions of the costumes of the Dyaks. 
They do not live in cottages, or separate houses, 
but as many as fifty or a hundred families in one 
house, or rather barrack. These houses are 
built on long poles, with a very deep verandah 
in front, on which all the business of the day is 
transacted the cooking, mat and basket making, 



72 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

&c., in which men and women are employed. 
Under the house reside the pigs, and their food 
is thrown to them through the floor. This is 
certainly an improvement on the Irish custom, 
of having the pigs in the same apartment : still 
it is not very sweet. In the interior of the 
house, are the sleeping rooms of the married peo- 
ple, and women and children : but the unmarried 
men sleep all together, in a house which is also 
used to keep the dried heads of their enemies. 
The heads hang from the roof, the bachelors sleep 
on the floor, and, if any visitors come to the 
tribe, this house is generally appointed for their 
quarters. But I am happy to say that, with 
our Sarawak Dyaks, the head-house is no longer 
such an important place, as it used to be : this 
vile custom is against the laws of our Rajah's 
Government, and will die out by degrees, as the 
people learn better habits, and the Christian law 
of love. 

Both Dyak men and women are better looking 
than the Malays. The tribes vary in appearance. 
Some, that have been much oppressed, either by 
their Malay masters, or the piratical Dyak tribes, 
are stunted in figure, and very subject to a skin 
disease, which looks disagreeable, and causes 



PERSONAL APPEARANCE OF THE DYAKS. 73 

them much discomfort no doubt arising from 
exposure to the weather, and want of proper food. 
But, when the tribe is well off, and enjoying the 
blessings of peace, they are fine well-proportioned 
men, with fairer skins than the Malays, and finer 
features. Their eyes are particularly bright and 
intelligent. The women are rather small, but 
often pretty when young, although the hard work, 
which they do in the rice-fields, makes them 
old-looking at an early age. I have seen little 
Dyak children as fair and pretty as English 
children. In my school, I have a little Sarebas 
Dyak girl, who, when brought to me, was quite 
an infant. Her father was killed in battle, and 
her mother had cast the baby into the long grass, 
and fled into the jungle. The poor orphan was 
brought to Sarawak, and given to me. She had 
long golden hair, and large brown eyes. I 
thought her as sweet a baby as I had ever seen. 
She is now nearly five years old ; but I cannot 
say that she is any longer pretty, although she 
is a gentle nice child, and sings like a little bird. 
The Dyaks are fond of pork, but they will eat 
monkeys, squirrels, and, in fact, any thing they 
can catch in the jungle, except deer, and this 
some tribes object to, as a meat likely to make 



74 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

them timid and faint-hearted, arid therefore only 
allowable to women and children. This is an 
old tradition of their forefathers; and I think the 
Malays do not discourage it, as they are very 
fond of venison, and like to keep the game 
for themselves. 

There is a certain slimy clay, which the Sakar- 
ran Dyaks always provide themselves with, when 
they make their excursions in their boats, and 
which they suck when their stock of rice is ex- 
hausted : they say it is very nutritious. Twice 
a year, when the rice-harvest is gathered in, the 
Dyaks make a great public feast. Papa hap- 
pened to visit the Miradang tribe once, just as 
their harvest-home feast was being ended. As 
the tribe all live in two or three great houses, 
there was no difficulty in collecting them to- 
gether. Being all assembled, they feasted for 
three days, during which they consumed 700 
fowls, 500 bushels (pasus) of rice, 300 pasus of 
cakes, made of rice, flour, and sugar, rolled as 
fine as vermicelli, and fried in cocoa nut oil, and 
70 jars of arrack, with which they made them- 
selves very tipsy. It is only on such occasions 
they get tipsy; but they have not yet learnt, 
that it is a shame and disgrace to be so. This 



THE SUNTAH DYAKS. 75 

tribe numbers at least 2000 men, women, and 
children. I do not remember how many pigs 
they ate at this feast a great many, of course. 
Besides eating and drinking, they had public 
games, a greased pole to climb, surmounted by a 
brass ball, and with two arms of wood, from 
which depended the prizes of fowls, which be- 
longed to whoever could reach them. On the 
pole, were carved images of lizards, and croco- 
diles, to measure how high each man could as- 
cend. This tribe, living on the Quop river, is 
very prosperous. 

Last year, Papa accompanied the Rajah, in a 
visit to the Suntah Dyaks. This tribe used to 
be a prey to the Sakarran and Sarebas pirates, 
who had so often destroyed their houses, and 
farms, and stolen their wives, children, and 
goods, that, when Sir James Brooke first lived 
at Sarawak, they were reduced to a very small 
number, and robbed of their possessions. The 
chief appealed to Sir James for protection, and, 
since then, they have lived securely, and cultiva- 
ted their paddy-farms in peace, growing richer 
from year to year ; as they sell the paddy they 
do not want to eat, to purchase clothes, gongs, 
brazen vessels, and other things they value. 



76 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

They were delighted to receive a visit from the 
Rajah, to whom they owed so much. The chief 
walked down the hill, on which they lived, to 
meet him, and as they entered the principal 
house, guns were fired off as a salute. The old 
women of the tribe stood ready to receive them, 
dressed in curious long jackets, embroidered 
with figures of lizards, crocodiles, and other hid- 
eous monsters, made of small shells called cowries. 
These old women made yells of welcome, and 
stroked their visitors' arms and legs; for they 
fancy there is some goodness or virtue to be rub- 
bed but of white people. They then washed their 
feet in cocoa-nut water, and set aside the water 
to steep their seed paddy in, imagining it would 
help it to grow. At night, when, tired with 
their long walk, the Rajah and Papa laid them- 
selves down to sleep on the floor, the Dyaks 
feasted and drank in honour of their visit ; and 
these silly old women stood over Papa, whom 
they knew to be a Doctor, and constantly woke 
him, by stroking his limbs, and swaying their 
arms about, close to his face. They thought 
him a very reverend person, no doubt, but I 
think he could gladly have dispensed with so 
much attention. 



CUSTOMS OF THE DYAKS. 77 

Another custom of theirs is almost too nasty 
to speak of. They brought portions of cooked 
rice on leaves, and begged the Englishmen to 
spit into them, after which they ate them up, 
thinking they should be the better for it. The 
day will come, I trust, when these simple people 
will know that " God made man of one flesh, in 
all the nations upon earth ;" and will regard the 
white men as His ambassadors, to teach them 
heavenly wisdom. This is the only light in 
which our Rajah, or Papa, would wish to be 
reverenced. But we cannot wonder at their 
superstitious love of the Rajah. He has deli- 
vered them from the exactions of the Malays, 
and the dread of the pirates, who made them the 
poorest, and the most miserable, of human beings, 
and kept them in constant fear of death for 
themselves, and starving for their wives and 
children. 

It is time that I should tell you something 
about these pirate tribes, as I have so often men- 
tioned them in my letters ; but I will not begin 
to-day, as my sheet is full. 



LETTER IX. 

THE PIRATES. 

October, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

When your little cousin Harriette was 
asked "what is a pirate?" she said, " a great 
rogue of the sea;" and perhaps I could not give 
you a better definition of these bad men, who 
have, for centuries past, been the terror of all 
native trading vessels, in the seas of the Eastern 
Archipelago. " It is in the Malay's nature," 
says a Dutch writer, " to rove on the seas in his 
prahu, as it is in that of the Arab to wander 
with his steed on the sands of the desert." Be- 
fore the English and the Dutch governments 
exerted themselves to put down piracy in this 
part of the world, there were communities of 
these Malays, settled on various parts of the 
coast of Borneo, who made it the business of 
their lives to rob and destroy all the vessels they 
could meet with, either killing the crews, or 
reducing them to slavery. Eor this purpose, 



THE PIRATES. 79 

many still go out in fleets, of from ten to thirty 
war boats or prahus. These boats are about 
ninety feet long; they carry a large cannon in 
the bow of the vessel, and from three to four 
lelas (smaller brass cannon), on each broadside, 
besides about twenty or thirty rifles or muskets. 
Each prahu is rowed by sixty or eighty oars, in 
two tiers, and will carry from eighty to a hun- 
dred men. Over the rowers, and extending the 
whole length of the vessel, is a light, flat roof, 
made of split bamboo and covered with mats : 
this protects their ammunition and provisions 
from the rain, and serves as a platform on which 
they mount to fight, and from which they fire 
their muskets, and hurl their spears. These 
formidable boats skulk about, in the sheltered 
bays of the coast, at the season of the year 
when they know that merchant vessels will be 
passing laden with rich cargoes for the ports of 
Singapore, Penang, or to and from China. A 
scout boat, with but few men in it, which would 
not excite suspicion, goes out to spy for sails. 
They do not generally attack well armed large 
vessels, though many a Dutch and English brig, 
which has been becalmed, or enticed by them 
into dangerous and shallow water, has been over- 



80 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

powered by their superior numbers. But it is, 
usually, the small unarmed vessels they fall upon, 
with fearful yells, binding those they do not kill, 
and, when they have robbed them, burning the 
vessels, to avoid detection. They then carry 
their prisoners to some Malay town, whose inha- 
bitants, or, at any rate, the rulers and great men, 
connive at their wickedness, and buy their booty 
and slaves. While the fair wind, or south-west 
monsoon blows, the pirates do not return to their 
homes, but lurk about in uninhabited bays and 
creeks, until the trading season is over. But 
when the north-east wind begins to blow they go 
back to their settlements, often rich in booty, and 
with blood on their hands, only to rejoice over 
the past, and prepare themselves for another ex- 
cursion. 

There are still nests of pirates, in the north of 
Borneo, who are as yet unsubdued by the forces 
which English, Dutch, and Spaniards have sent 
against them. But the Malay towns in the 
Straits which used to encourage the pirates, by 
buying their slaves, etc., do not now dare to 
deal with them so openly; as the Europeans 
have made them promise to assist them in extir- 
pating this great evil. This is the case at Bruni, 



SUPPORT OF THE PIRATES. 81 

the capital of the Malay power, on the north of 
Borneo, where the Sultan lives. The Sultan is 
a bad man, and used to enrich himself by allow- 
ing the pirates, from the countries and islands 
further north, to trade with him and his Pange- 
rans (nobles), and to pay him tribute in slaves 
and presents for the permission. The Sultan of 
Sooloo, has also been obliged to withdraw his 
countenance from the pirates who infest the 
groups of islands to the north of Borneo. 

When Sir James Brooke first visited Sarawak 
the Malay nobles there, who were subjects of the 
Sultan of Bruni, used to follow the evil example 
of their master, and encourage the piratical 
Dyaks of Sarebas and Sakarran to pay them 
tribute, for allowing their raids-on the defenceless 
inhabitants of the coasts, thus impoverishing the 
very country they ruled, and preventing all 
native trade, for their own individual profit a 
very short-sighted, as well as wicked policy. 
But now the state of things is altered at Sarawak; 
and no pirate boat dares to lurk near the d \vell- 
ing of an English rajah, who is their determined 
foe, and who, by teaching his subjects the benefits 
of a good government, and the certain riches of 
industry, has made them as averse to piracy as 

G 



82 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

himself. The Dyaks of Sarebas and Sakarran 
have been taught piracy by the Malays, who 
have settled amongst them. They were always 
head-hunters, and used to pull the oars in the 
Malay prahus, for the sake of the heads of the 
slain, which were alone valuable to them, where- 
as the Malays coveted the booty; thus the Malays 
made use of them at first, as the monkey used 
the cat's paw, to take the roasted chestnuts off 
the fire. But, in course of time, the Dyaks 
became expert seamen. They built boats, which 
they called bangkongs ; and went out with the 
Malays, in fleets of 100 war-boats, devastating 
the coast, and killing Malays, Chinese, Dyaks, or 
Europeans, wherever they could get them. The 
Dyak bangkong, or war-boat, draws very little 
water, and is both lighter and faster than the 
Malay prahu; it is 100 feet long and nine or ten 
broad. Sixty or eighty men, with paddles, make 
her skim through the water as swiftly as a 
London race-boat. She moves without noise, 
and surprises and overwhelms her victims with 
showers of spears, in the dead of the night; 
neither can any vessel, except a steamer, catch a 
Dyak bangkong, if the crew deem it necessary to 
fly. These boats can be easily taken to pieces ; 



CRUELTY OF THE PIRATES. 83 

for the planks are not fastened with nails, but 
laced together with rattans, and caulked with 
bark, which swells when wet: so that, if they 
wish to hide their retreat in the jungle, they can 
quickly unlace their boats, carry them on their 
shoulders into the woods, and put them together 
again, when they want them. 

When we first lived at Sarawak no merchant 
boat dared go out of the river alone, and un- 
armed; and we were constantly shocked with 
dreadful accounts of villages on the coast, or 
boats at the entrance, being surprised, and men, 
women, and children, barbarously murdered by 
these wretches. I remember once a boat being 
found with only three fingers of a man in it, and 
a bloody mark at the side, where the heads of 
those to whom the b boat belonged had been cut 
off. Sometimes the pirates would wait until 
they knew the men of a village were all away, 
working at their paddy-farms, and then they 
would fall suddenly upon the poor defenceless 
women and children, kill some, make slaves of 
the rest, and rob their houses. Sometimes, 
having destroyed a village and its inhabitants, 
they would dress themselves in the clothes of 
the slain, and proceeding to another place, would 



84 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

call out to the women, " The Sarebas are coming, 
but, if you bring down your valuables to us, we 
will defend you, and your property ;" and many 
of the poor women fell into the snare, and be- 
came a prey to their enemies. 

There is no action too cruel for a pirate. If 
they attack a house when the men are at home it 
is in the night. They pull stealthily up the 
river in their boats, and, landing under cover of 
their shields, they creep under the house, which 
you know stands on very tall poles. They then 
set fire to dry wood, and a quantity of chillies 
which they bring with them for the purpose: 
this makes a suffocating smoke which hinders 
the inmates of the house from coming out to 
defend themselves. They commence cutting 
down the posts of the house, which falls, with 
all it contains, into their ruthless hands. 

In the year 1849 the atrocities of the piratical 
Dyaks were so frequent that the Rajah applied 
to the English Admiral in the Straits, for some 
men-of-war to assist him in destroying them. 
Remonstrances and threats had been tried again 

o 

and again. The pirates would always promise 
good behaviour for the future, to avert a present 
danger; but they never kept these promises 



EXPEDITION AGAINST THE PIRATES. 85 

when an opportunity offered for breaking them 
with impunity. There is no good faith in bad 
men, and cruelty and falsehood are generally to 
be found together. In consequence of Sir James 
Brooke's application, H. M. S. Albatross, com- 
manded by Captain Farquhar, H. M. sloop 
Royalist, Commander Lieutenant Everest, and 
H. E. I. C. steamer Nemesis, Commander Cap- 
tain Wallage, were sent by Admiral Collyer to 
Sarawak. Then the Rajah had all his war-boats 
got ready to join the English forces. There was 
the Lion King, the Royal Eagle, the Tiger, the 
Big Snake, the Little Snake, the Frog, the Alli- 
gator, and many others, belonging to the Datus, 
who, on occasions like these, are bound to call on 
their servants, and a certain number of able- 
bodied men, in their campongs, to man and fight 
in their boats: this is their service to Govern- 
ment, instead of paying taxes, as English people 
do. The Rajah supplies the whole force with 
rice for the expedition, and a certain number of 
muskets. The English ships were left, the 
Albatross at Sarawak, and the Royalist to guard 
the entrance of the Batang Lupar river; but 
their boats, and nearly all the officers, accom- 
panied the fleet, and the steamer Nemesis went 



86 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

also. On the 24th of July they left us, as many 
as eighteen Malay prahus, manned by from twenty 
to seventy men in a boat, and decorated with 
flags, and streamers innumerable, of the bright- 
est colours, the Sarawak flag always at the stern. 
For the Tiger I made a flag, with a tiger's head 
painted on it, looking wonderfully ferocious. It 
was an exciting time, with gongs and drums, 
Malay yells and English hurrahs; and our fer- 
vent prayers, for their safety and success, accom- 
panied them that night, as they dropped down 
the river in gay procession. They were after- 
wards joined by bangkongs of friendly Dyaks, 
300 men from Lundu, 800 from Linga, some 
from Saraarakan, Sadong, and various places 
which had suffered from the pirates, and were 
anxious to assist in giving them a lesson. We 
heard nothing of the fleet until the 2nd of Au- 
gust, when I received a little note from the Rajah, 
written in pencil, on a scrap of paper, on the night 
of the 31st of July, and giving us an account of 
how they fell in with a great balla (war fleet), 
of Sarebas and Sakarran pirates, consisting of 
150 bangkongs, and caught them returning to 
their homes, with plunder and captives in their 
boats. The pirates found all the entrances to 



DEFEAT OF THE PIRATES. 87 

the river occupied by their enemies the English, 
Malay, and Dyak forces, being placed in three 
detachments, and the Nemesis all ready to help 
whenever the attack should begin. The Singha 
Rajah sent up a rocket when she espied the 
pirate fleet, to apprise the rest of their approach. 
Then there was a dead silence, broken only by 
three strokes of a gong, which called the pirates 
to a council of war. A few minutes afterwards 
a fearful yell gave notice of their advance, and 
the fleet approached in two divisions. But, 
when they sighted the steamer, they became 
aware of the odds against them, and again 
called a council by beat of gong : after another 
pause a second yell of defiance showed that they 
had decided upon giving battle. 

Then, in the dead of the night, ensued a fearful 
scene. The pirates fought bravely, but could 
not withstand the superior forces of their ene- 
mies. Their boats were upset by the paddles of 
the steamer; they were hemmed in on every 
side, and five hundred men were killed sword in 
hand ; while two thousand five hundred escaped 
to the jungle. The boats were broken to pieces, 
or deserted on the beach by their crews ; and the 
morning light shewed a sad spectacle of ruin and 



88 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

defeat. Upwards of eighty prahus and bang- 
kongs were captured, many from sixty to eighty 
feet long, with nine or ten feet of beam. 

The English officers, on that night, offered 
prizes to all who should bring in captives alive : 
but the pirates would take no quarter; in the 
water they still fought without surrender, for 
they could not understand a mercy which they 
never extended to their enemies. Consequently, 
the prisoners were very few, and the darkness of 
the night favoured their escape to the jungle. 
The peninsula, to which they escaped, could 
easily have been so surrounded by the Dyak and 
Malay forces, that not one man of that pirate 
fleet could have left it alive. This blockade the 
Malays entreated the Rajah to make; but he 
refused, saying, that he hoped they had already 
received a sufficiently severe lesson, and would 
return to their homes humbled and corrected. 
Our Rajah has always endeavoured to teach his 
people that a great warrior is as merciful as he is 
brave. He, therefore, ordered his fleet to pro- 
ceed up the river, and the pirates returned to 
their homes. 

After this the Rajah hoped that the Sarebas 
and Sakarran tribes would forswear piracy for 



THE SAKARRANS. 89 

the future. They have indeed made many pro- 
mises of amendment, and the Sakarraris have 
suffered an English gentleman, Mr. Brereton, to 
live amongst them for two years, and to build a 
fort on the bank of the river, to prevent armed 
boats from going out. He has sought to govern 
them with gentleness and kindness, and to in- 
duce them to turn their attention to trade and 
agriculture, leaving their former evil habits ; and 
they have consented to receive a missionary, 
Mr. Chambers, as their teacher. Let us hope 
that this change for the better will ripen into a 
lasting peace, and lead to the dawn of Chris- 
tianity amongst them. But I have little faith in 
them, Charley, unless the English men-of-war in 
the Straits pay them an occasional visit, to re- 
mind them of the past. 

This is a long letter : so adieu until the next 
mail. 

Note. A Sakarran Dyak told Papa, since this letter was 
written, that he led a detachment of the pirate boats on the 
night of the 31st of July, sent by the fleet to board the 
Nemesis. " We thought," said he, " that it was a long gun 
boat we saw on the water, and had she not been a steamer, 
and overturned us with her paddles, we should have taken 
her in five minutes, and had every head on board." 



LETTER X. 

THE ANIMALS OF SAEAWAK. 

November, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHAKLEY, 

Papa and I have just returned from a 
pleasant row down the river to Tanah Puteh 
(white earth). I wish you had been with us, 
for there are some fruit trees now in bearing by 
the water's edge, and a number of monkeys were 
running up and down the boughs, getting their 
supper. What a chattering they made, and how 
they swung themselves from branch to branch, 
making the trees quiver and bend, as if they 
would snap in two ! They did not heed us in 
the least, though our boat lay close to shore, and 
Papa landed to look for some wood he wanted 
for building. The Malays get a fine clay from 
this place, with which they make tiles, and jars, 
and pots (chatties as they call them), to cook 
their food in. But to return to the monkeys, 
at Tanah Puteh; we call them long-nosed mon- 
keys ; they grow to a great size ; and have more 



ANIMALS OF SARAWAK. 91 

human features than any other animal. The 

other day Mr. C caught one and brought it 

home. He soon became tame, and I paid him 
several visits. " Nosey," as we named him, stood 
more than four feet high, and his limbs were 
wonderfully strong ; his face was free from hair, 
his eyes hazel, his nose hung down over his 
upper lip; round his neck nature had given him 
a fine fur tippet of light brown, and round his 
waist the hair was white, so that he had quite a 
clothed appearance. He was very amiable, and 
allowed any one to pull his marvellous nose: 
but he did not live long in captivity ; his appe- 
tite was enormous, and he devoured so much 
curry and rice, that it brought on an inflamma- 
tion of which he died. Papa sent his skin to 
England. I have seen many of this species of 
monkey since, but their noses were more turned 
up, and not so long as " Nosey's." Monkeys are 
not favourite pets of mine, or I might indulge 
myself with several interesting varieties which 
are common at Sarawak. 

Here is the Wawa or long-armed ape, which 
makes a melodious noise in the jungle early in 
the morning, like the bubbling of water out of a 
long necked bottle. It is a gentle creature, 



92 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

black with a white face. But the monkey, which 
is most esteemed, is the Mias or Orang-Utan 
(wild man of the woods). These are very large, 
and disgustingly like human beings : they have a 
melancholy expression and manner, and get very 
fond of their owners. A large female monkey of 
this kind, which we called Jemima, and which 

lived a long time at Mr. R 's, was quite fond 

of Papa, would kiss his hands, and fret if he did 
not notice her. There is a Mias in the Zoologi- 
cal Gardens, which came from Sarawak. 

I am thankful to say that we are not troubled 
with the fear of wild beasts at Sarawak. No 
lions or tigers roar in our jungles; the worst 
enemy you are likely to meet, if you walk into 
the depths of the forest, is a small bear, who 
would be more afraid of you, than you need be 
of it. We have kept several of these bears. 
They are black with a patch of white or tan, co- 
lour on their chest; their heads and feet are 
large in proportion to their bodies, which are no 
bigger than that of your Skye terrier. But they 
are the most ill-tempered creatures imaginable. 
The first we had would never eat his rice with- 
out sugar. One day on my offering him his din- 
ner without the sweet sauce, he went into a great 



ANIMALS OF SARAWAK. 93 

rage, and, seizing a knife on the ground between 
his teeth, he cut his mouth with it. After this, 
he would not touch food of any kind, but sulked 
until he died. Mr. Brereton kept one of these 
bears in the fort at Sakarran ; it used to run 
about the house like a dog, and was quite tame. 
One day it made its way into the store-room, 
where stood a tall jar, full of brown sugar, with 
rather a narrow mouth. Bruin dipped his paws 
into the jar, and ate all he could get at ; then, find- 
ing there was still a great deal in the jar beyond 
his reach, he proceeded to let himself down into 
it. For four days no one could imagine what 
was become of the bear; they began to fear he 
had strayed into the jungle, when some one, 
opening the store-room door, heard curious 
grumbling sounds issuing from the sugar jar; 
and there sat Bruin on his hind legs, having 
eaten all the sugar, and thus having let himself 
down too deep to be able to get out again. These 
bears live very much on honey in the jungle. 

Soon after our arrival at Sarawak, I had a 
beautiful little snake brought me, which is called 
the Flower snake. It was of a bright green co- 
lour, with a delicate stripe of lilac down each 
side. The Malay man, who sold it to me, said 



94 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

that he had taken out its poisonous fangs ; but I 
do not believe it ever had any. It was quite 
harmless, and looked very pretty, twining itself 
round the furniture in the room, and climbing 
about to catch flies. One day it coiled itself on 
the top of a very high door, and, the wind mov- 
ing the door on its hinges, the snake fell suddenly 
to the ground and broke its back which soon 
killed it. 

My pets generally come to some sad end. The 
merriest I ever had was a squirrel, of which I 
sent you a little picture. He' was a very hand- 
some fellow, and used to tumble head-over-heels 
by the half-hour together, as if he had been 
taught to turn a whirl-a-gig; but it was pure 
fun on his part. I kept him in a cage, but let 
him out now and then, as he only ran up and 
down my arms, over my neck, and then into his 
cage again. Once he ran away a large bird of 
the Parrot kind was put into his cage, and he 
was so frightened, that he jumped out over the 
roof of a house below, and into the river, in a 

minute. I thought he was lost, but Mr. P 

got into a boat and went after him; and, when 
he was tired of swimming, he ran up the oar into 
the boat, and so came home again. Perhaps this 



ANIMALS OF SARAWAK. 95 

little trip gave him a taste for liberty ; as, soon 
after, when we moved to our new house on the 
hill, he escaped to the jungle, and I never saw 
him again. 

After the squirrel was gone, I had a Malacca 
thrush, a bird with a very fine voice, who learnt 
to whistle any tune it was taught. It could ac- 
complish 'Highland Laddie,' and part of 'the Bri- 
tish Grenadiers,' before it died, and would have 
sung more, if I could have whistled to it ; but I 
liked its natural notes best. It lived on grass- 
hoppers or flies, which I dare say, in its wild 
state, it caught flying, for it had a wide mouth, 
rather like a goat-sucker. This bird is common 
in our jungles: the Malays call it Burong Boya, 
or th$ alligator-bird, and tell this story about it. 
The ancestors of the Burong Boya owe a large 
debt to the alligator; and every year the alliga- 
tor comes, and asks the bird to pay this old debt. 
Then the bird, perching itself on a high branch, 
shakes its wings and sings, 'How can I pay ? I've 
nothing but my feathers, nothing but my fea- 
thers :' so the alligator is obliged to go away till 
next year. This Malay story arises from the 
thrush always shaking his wings when he is in 
full song. Poor Dick died just before I left 



96 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

Sarawak last year. My school-children were very 
sorry ; they used to find him grasshoppers in the 
grass about the house, and the Rajah used to 
send them bottles of sugar plums, which I dealt 
out, in exchange for the grasshoppers. 

The birds at Sarawak are very beautiful 
bright parroquets, green and pink pigeons of 
many varieties, one of which they call the 
wounded heart, because it is white, with a rose 
coloured stain on its breast. Little delicate doves 
of sober colours, which live in nutmeg trees, and 
are therefore called nutmeg doves, are very 
plentiful. There are also tiny birds with long 
tongues, who eat the honey from the flowers like 
bees, and are not many times larger. Some of 
these are of brilliant colours. The boys kill 
them with a little surnpitan or blow-pipe, which 
throws a tiny dart ; for they are easily knocked 
down, and shot would spoil their plumage. 

There are beautiful fire-back pheasants, often 
caught in the snares the Malays set in the jungle 
so called on account of the bright flame co- 
loured feathers on their backs ; and the cryptonix, 
or jungle partridge is a pretty bird, the male a 
dark purple with a fine red crest on his head, 
the female green and without a crest. But it 



ANIMALS OF SARAWAK. 97 

would take more time than I have to spare, to 
describe all the wonders and beauties, which 
have their homes in our woods ; neither could I 
tell you the names of many, as the natives have 
given them none. I had for some time a little 
mouse deer (Plandok), which grew tame in the 
chicken-house. This tiny creature is smaller 
than an Italian greyhound; it has large dark 
eyes, like all the gazelle tribe, and its legs are as 
thin as your little finger. It eats the buds and 
flowers of the Paga-shrub; and you may fancy 
how small and delicate a creature it is, when I 
tell you that it died in consequence of a chicken 
pecking its head. There are much larger kinds 
of deer to be found in the country the Kejang, 
or roebuck, and the Rusa, a fine large deer but 
these are not easily tamed, nor often met with 
near the town. Wild pigs abound. 

Sometimes we have an unwelcome visitant in 
a cobra snake, whose bite is certain death; but 
they cannot be very numerous, as I have not 
heard of one person being bitten, since we lived 
at Sarawak. When we first occupied our present 
house, the ground had been newly cleared, and 
the snakes, I suppose, missed their former hiding 
places: so they walked into the house to look 

H 



98 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

for them, and got knocked on the head for their 
pains. 

One day Papa was walking up the hill which 
led to the church. He had a book in his hand, 
and was reading as he went along, when suddenly 
he heard a loud hissing, and, looking up, saw 
one of these black cobras standing on the path 
before him, with his hood puffed out (for they 
inflate a hood of loose skin over their heads 
when angry). Papa had no stick in his hand, 
so he stood still, with his eyes fixed on the snake, 
and called to the carpenters at work in the 
church to come with some sharp tools to his 
help, which they did, and despatched the snake. 
But I think Papa owed his escape to his presence 
of mind; for, had he attempted to run away, 
the creature would have darted at him. There 
are many other kinds of snakes ; the natives are 
fond of telling wonderful stories of their adven- 
tures with them in the jungle; but I do not 
believe all they say. No doubt, however, there 
are large boa constrictors to be met with some- 
times. A Malay man, whose word I can rely 
on, once told me, that he was in the jungle cut- 
ting wood, and, being tired, was going to sit 
down on what he took for part of the twisted 



ANIMALS OF SARAWAK. 99 

roots of a great tree ; as he looked at it, it began 
to move, and then he saw it was a huge snake, 
partly coiled on the ground, and partly up the 
tree. He immediately assailed it with his parang, 
and cut it in two; it was quite inert and stupid, 
for inside he found a large deer which it had 
swallowed, and which he affirmed to be as large 
as an ox as, if it was a Rusa, it doubtless was. 
One more creature I must tell you about, though 
my paper is" nearly full. We have, as in all 
warm countries, plenty of lizards, from the little 
Chic-chak, which runs on the ceiling catching 
mosquitoes, and sometimes falls down plump into 
your plate at dinner, leaving his tail in the gravy, 
to the land crocodile or iguana, which eats the 
chickens and ducks in the farm yard. When we 
were building our Mission House, a certain kind 
of lizard, called a Tokay, got into the roof 
between the timbers. There he lived and made 
a most disagreeable noise, like the bark of a little 
hoarse dog. He settled himself over the library, 
and it was impossible to read or think, with the 
creature yapping close over your head ; your little 
brother Harry was quite frightened at a noise 
for which he could see no living cause. At last 
Papa offered two dollars to any one who would 

H 2 



100 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

kill it, and the carpenter managed to shoot it 
with a pistol. It was rather more than a foot 
long, of a dark grey, with a loose skin ; its back 
was arched and furnished with a saw-like edge, 
and the natives say it bites fiercely. The Sia- 
mese have a legend about the Tokay. They say 
that he was once set as a sentinel to guard the 
gates of a paradise, belonging to one of their 
heroes, named Ismara. Nontheak, an enemy of 
Ismara, taking advantage of his absence, one day 
presented himself at the gate; there he found 
Tokay, who told him that he could not enter 
without learning certain magic words. How- 
ever, Nontheak flattered and threatened the lizard 
till he taught him the magic words; and, when 
Ismara returned to his paradise, he found his 
enemy in possession. He managed to turn him 
out, being the more powerful of the two; and 
then, to punish the lizard, he doomed him to 
a perpetual liver complaint, and an occasional 
visit from a little green lizard, who was to run 
down his throat, eat up his heart and liver, and 
run out again. 

What child's tales ! You must not believe them, 
Charley. 



LETTER XL 

LITE IN THE COURT HOUSE. 

December, 1851. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

After we had spent a week at the Rajah's 
house, on our first landing at Sarawak, the 
30th June, 1848, we removed to the Court 
House, just across the river. This house was 
built by a German Missionary, the year before. 
He intended to have a day school in the rooms 
below, and to live in the upper story; but 
before he had finished the house, he was 
recalled to Germany, and the Rajah converted 
his school-rooms into a Hall, for the adminis- 
tration of Justice, and allowed us to live in 
the upper rooms, until we could build a Mission 
House on the land, which he gave us for the 
purpose. In the Court-House, therefore, we re- 
mained rather more than a year. It had, like 
most other places, its pleasures and disagreeable 
points : I liked it for being in the town, and on 
the river, where I could see and hear all that 



102 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

went on, and, even at night, did not feel lonely, 
as the fishermen in their boats, under our win- 
dows, kept up a perpetual talking. We were so 
surrounded by the Malays, too, who were always 
in and about the house, that we had better oppor- 
tunities of learning their language, than if we 
had lived in a more retired spot. The first step 
towards gaining influence with a foreign people 
is to become acquainted with their language, 
manners, and customs, that you may not only 
know how to talk to them, but may avoid offend- 
ing any of their national peculiarities. Papa 
was soon at home with the Malays; he studied 
the language during his voyage from England, 
and quickly caught the pronunciation, In a 
little room, next the Hall of Justice, he had a 
dispensary for medicine, and the people soon 
learnt to value the physic and medical aid, which 
was there given to them. This little room was 
often crowded with patients and visitors ; and I, 
sitting overhead, could hear a great deal of talk- 
ing and laughter going on beneath. Then Papa 
would bring his visitors up to me, to hear a little 
music, and look at the pictures we brought from 
England with us, especially those of the Queen 
and Prince Albert, which interested them exceed- 



LADIES OF SARAWAK. 103 

ingly; but they were rather puzzled to under- 
stand how Prince Albert could be the Queen's 
husband without being the King. 

The Malays have not as yet learnt to give 
women their right place in society. They are 
still in a measure their slaves, or at best their 
dolls, whom they like to see handsomely dressed, 
and employed in embroidery and cooking. Until 
I went to live at Sarawak, and the Rajah en- 
couraged the chief men of the place to allow 
their wives and daughters to receive European 
visitors, they were scarcely ever seen out of their 
own apartments. The higher their rank, the 
less they were allowed to appear in public, and, 
consequently, they were as silly and ignorant as 
children, and did not consider themselves capable 
of learning anything. They are, however, not 
at all deficient in quickness and intelligence; 
many of them can read and write Malay; they 
weave and embroider very cleverly, and are inge- 
nious confectioners. I think they would gladly 
welcome an English lady who would visit them 
in their homes, and teach them geography, his- 
tory, and general knowledge, music and singing ; 
these they would like to learn : and the respect 
with which they listen to a white lady would 



104 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

gain their attention to any lessons on morality 
and religion, which she might give them. I have 
never had either health or leisure to devote 
myself to the Malay ladies ; yet many of them 
are my friends, and pay me frequent visits, 
often following my advice, with a docility which 
surprises me, as it is contrary to their long-esta- 
blished superstitions and customs. They like to 
visit me in the evening, as they are then less 
seen on their way to and from the house. Ac- 
cordingly the head of the family enquires the 
day before whether he may bring his wife to see 
Mem Padre. Of course I consent, and some- 
times have the magic lantern prepared for their 
amusement, and some little presents of orna- 
ments, needle-books, or work-bags, ready for 
them. About seven o'clock I 'see a long pro- 
cession, by torch-light, approaching the house. 
They generally choose moonlight nights, but the 
torches are carried partly for ceremony. First, 
the master of the house walks in, and after him 
come his wife, and his children, and as many of 
her relations, dependents, and slaves, as can be 
mustered for the occasion. There are often as 
many as fifty women, all drest in their best, or 
they borrow fine garments for the night. Their 



LADIES OF SARAWAK. 105 

hair is decorated with white or yellow flowers, 
which they pick without the stalks, and string 
into garlands on thread; they are constantly 
arranging their dress or hair, which they like you 
to admire and notice. I do not attempt to talk 
to all my visitors. The Datu, or whoever the 
husband may be, introduces his wife to me, and 
she calls the slave to bring the children, who are 
always carried on the servants' backs, and are 
generally very shy, and begin to cry, till I give 
them sweetmeats, or toys, to reassure them. 
The principal women sit on chairs, and the rest 
on the floor, which is their usual custom, and 
therefore more comfortable to them. Sometimes 
they like to play at chess. The pieces being 
arranged on the board, they divide themselves 
into two parties, and each party consults together 
what the move shall be. Their game very nearly 
resembles ours. I never saw them lose their 
temper over it, yet they play very \vell, and like 
to win. Sometimes they ask me to shew them, 
on the terrestrial globe, where England is, and 
Sarawak, and Mecca, and " Room," as they call 
Constantinople. This is the extent of their 
geography. They generally petition me for soap, 
or whatever I use to make my skin white, as 



106 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

they would like to be fair also. I assure them 
that God made our skins of different colours, 
and that their dark skin is quite as pretty as 
mine; but I generally give them some soap, as I 
should like them to learn how useful it is for 
cleanliness. 

They are never tired of hearing me sing and 
play, and are especially amused to see that I read 
the music from a book, and that I stop if they 
shut it up. They are a merry set, and always 
make me wish I could see more of them, and 
know them better when they visit me. I hope 
that one day they will become intelligent wives 
and mothers, and a blessing to their country. 
This will scarcely be while the men buy their 
wives for money, and are allowed to have more 
than one. I cannot say that this is very common 
unless a man is rich ; still it is permitted by their 
religion and customs; therefore the wife does 
not feel herself the friend and companion of her 
husband, but his property and household furni- 
ture. Our Datu Patinghi, or head magistrate, 
has two wives: they have separate houses and 
establishments, which he often complains of, as a 
heavy expense to him. One of these wives is 
said to be the favourite. After the Rajah had 



SCHOOL. 107 

built himself a wooden Bungalow, the Datu had 
a new house built, in imitation of the Rajah's, 
for this wife, Mina. Then the other wife and her 
daughter Fatima said to the Datu, " We must 
also have a new wooden house like Mina's, why 
should she be better off than we are?" "I 
cannot afford," said the Datu, " to build two 
new houses: my purse is empty; you must wait 
until it is refilled." " No, no ! we will not wait; 
we will give you no peace till you begin a new 
house for us. See, we will take a parang, and 
chop down a post of this old tumble-down house 
every day; then in time it will fall, and you 
must give us another." So the Datu, shrugging 
up his shoulders at the expense and trouble of 
having two wives, was forced to build another 
wooden house; but he now always recommends 
the Malays to be content with one wife. 

While we lived at the Court-House, Papa esta- 
blished a day-school for the Malays, where I 
used to go for two hours in the morning to teach 
any girls or women who presented themselves, 
while a schoolmaster in another room taught the 
boys and men. Sometimes there were a good 
many scholars, sometimes scarcely any; the 
women liked to bring their bajus, and sew, 



108 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

chatting to me meanwhile; but I soon found 
that the poorest and least respectable women 
came, and that it was mere curiosity on their 
part to see the English Mem, by which I did not 
gain in the opinion of the better sort, so I gave 
up the women's department. At this time, how- 
ever, we took four little orphan children, two 
boys and two girls, to live with us, and they 
were my constant scholars. They were baptized 
by Papa on Advent Sunday, 1848. Peter was 
the eldest, five years old; Mary and Julia, five 
and four ; Tommy, two and a half. They were 
very pleased to have pretty new frocks, and sit 
by me in church that day on a cushion on the 
floor. " What beautiful praying dresses these 
are," said Julia, when she saw them making. 
They soon learnt their letters : I used to take a 
picture alphabet to school, and, strewing some 
letters on the floor, say, " Who will bring me 
A, B," etc. ; so they all ran and looked for them. 
One Sunday, little Tommy, sitting by me in 
church arid peeping over my book, called out, 
" Ah there's great A " however they were very 
good and quiet during the service. Of course 
they knew nothing when they first came to us : 
I had to teach them that God made them and all 



MALAY CHILDREN. 109 

things. One day I took them some pine apple 
tartlets, saying, " Who was so kind as to make 
these tarts for my children?" Little Mary look- 
ing very grave, said, " Perhaps God in heaven;" 
but they soon knew better than this. We after- 
wards took another boy, a little older, whose 
father was a Portuguese, his mother a Malay. 
Dominick was the boy's name, his age about 
seven. I asked him how old he was the day he 
came, and he answered, " About a hundred." 
To these children were soon added little Dyak 
Polly, the Sarebas baby I told you of, and a little 
Malay boy, son of Pangeran Dout, a Malay 
nobleman, who had fallen into poverty from his 
habit of gambling; and having more children 
than he knew how to feed, was glad to give me 
one. John Dout was a pretty child with a 
round moon-like face and fine black eyes ; he had 
a sweet voice and good ear for music, so that 
when I taught the children to sing hymns and 
little songs, John was always the leader. It 
was a great pleasure to these children to sit of 
an evening on the steps of the verandah, and 
sing " Twinkle, twinkle, little star," as the sky 
darkened and the stars peeped out one by one. 
But all this was later than when we lived in 



110 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

the Court House. I must go back to that time, 
to tell you how Papa had the jungle cleared from 
the hill on which our Mission House was to be 
built, and then the top of the hill levelled for 
the foundation. Malays and Chinese were the 
labourers ; but the Chinese, although they worked 
harder than the Malays, liked to do it their own 
way. They could not be persuaded to make use 
of wheelbarrows, but carried the earth from the 
hill in little baskets slung over their shoulders; 
and as these baskets hold not a quarter as much 
as a wheelbarrow, and they had to carry the 
earth some distance, their work was very slow. 
Nevertheless, in time the foundation was ready. 
Meanwhile, the timbers were squared and fitted 
by the Chinese carpenters, in a field near the 
Court House. A wooden house is joiners' work : 
all the great sleepers, as they call the foundation 
timbers, are fitted into one another, and the posts 
stand in them like the bottom and posts of a 
great bed ; so that all the skeleton of the house 
can be made, and laid by ready, and set up so 
quickly, that it seems to rise out of the earth 
like a fairy palace. Every evening I and my 
children used to walk up the hill to see how the 
house progressed; we sat down on the great 



VIEW FKOM THE HILL. 



Ill 



timbers, and drew the letters of the alphabet on 
the glistening white sand, which covered the hill. 
Sometimes we took flowers, seeds, and cuttings 
of roses, and jessamines, or young fruit trees, 
and planted about the house, that they might 
grow to a good size by the time the building was 
finished. The view is so lovely from thence ; the 
winding river ; the busy town, the pretty English 
Bungalows, with their fine back-ground of 
jungle trees, and the blue mountains on either 
side, make as pleasant a medley of nature's re- 
pose and man's activity as can well be fancied. 




LETTER XII. 

THE MISSION HOUSE AND CHURCH. 

January, 1852. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

The first week in August, 1848, our new 
house on the hill, " College Hill " as we called 
it, was sufficiently completed for us to remove 
there; and Sunday, the 12th, we had divine ser- 
vice in our large dining-hall, instead of in the 
lower room of the Court House. A wide stair- 
case outside the front of the house, with a pretty 
little porch at the top, leads to this hall. Over 
the porch hangs a great bell, which rings at cer- 
tain hours of the day to set us all to our various 
employments; it calls the Malays to their work 
at six; the Chinese at seven; at eleven it rings 
for their two hours to rest ; at one that they may 
begin work again; at five to say that work is 
over for the day. At one time, when we had no 
longer workmen in our employ, I thought the 
bell, and our ears too, might have a little rest 
from its frequent ding-dong, but the townspeople 



DYAK HOSTAGES. 113 

petitioned it might go on as usual, for they were 
so accustomed to time their hours by it, that 
they should feel quite at a loss without it. 

While we were removing to the Mission House, 
the Rajah, and nearly all the English were away 
on the expedition up the pirate rivers, which I 
told you about some time ago. On the 24th of 
August, however, they returned, and a great 
rejoicing took place; our house was filled in 
every corner with officers from the ships of war, 
who enjoyed a few nights on shore, and espe- 
cially on our cool breezy hill. 

On the evening of the 26th, six Dyak women 
who had been made captives, and were kept and 
brought to Sarawak, as hostages for their hus- 
bands' good behaviour, arrived, and the Rajah 
asked me to take care of them; he wished to 
shew them how differently Christian people treat 
their prisoners to what pirates do, consequently 
these poor women were astonished to receive new 
clothes, and plenty of good food, and anything 
they desired. There were several children with 
them, and I tried hard to persuade them to give 
me these little girls to bring up, but they would 
not hear of such a thing. In vain I displayed a 
pretty pink frock and white cap, which should 



114 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

belong to the little girl who would come to school ; 
I do not know whether they took me for an 
ogress, but at last they went to the Rajah, and 
made him promise them I should not have the 
children. I was glad to see how fond they were 
of their little ones, though they little knew the 
blessings they refused for them. These women 
were sent back to their country when the Sare- 
bas and Sakarran people submitted, laden with 
presents, except one, who chose to marry a China- 
man and settle at Sarawak. 

As soon as we had removed to College Hill 
Papa began to build the church. On the 28th 
of August the summit of the next rising ground, 
near the house, having been cleared and levelled, 
a large shed was built over the ground, which 
the " Albatross " sailors and our workmen 
adorned with gay flags and green boughs. The 
Rajah walked there from our house, dressed in 
full uniform, as Governor of Labuan; then 
came Papa, the English residents, the .Naval 
officers, and a number of Malays and Chinese, to 
witness the ceremony of laying the first great 
block of wood in the foundation of the Church 
of St. Thomas, Sarawak. A little hollow place 
in the block had some silver coins put into it, 



CHURCH AT SARAWAK. 115 

and your brother Harry added a new silver four- 
pence his aunt Sophy had sent him ; then, after 
some prayers had been read by Papa, the Rajah 
lowered the wooden block into its place, and we 
all returned home. From that day the church 
began to rise out of the earth with the same 
seeming magic as the house had done, for the 
great timbers were already prepared. It was 
most interesting to us every arch, every mould- 
ing, each pillar in that church, was a subject of 
thought and discussion. , I had to draw sketches 
of every part, and Papa often to make models of 
them for the Chinese carpenters, before they 
could understand. We had a German overseer 
for the Chinese ; he was ship carpenter in the 
Mary Louisa, and followed us to Sarawak, when 
she was wrecked, because he hoped Papa would 
employ him for the house and church, which in- 
deed we were very glad to do. 

When we were at Singapore during the winter 
of 1849, Papa had a pulpit and reading-desk, 
chairs, and a painted glass east window, made 
with the cross of the Sarawak flag, deep blue 
and red, on a yellow ground, for the centre light. 
These pleased the Malays ; indeed they admire 
our house and church immensely, and always 

i 2 



116 



LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 



assure us, as do the Dyaks also, that they know 
we could not have built either, unless spirits, or 
genii (antoos), had helped us. Well, God gave 
"wisdom and understanding to Bezaleel and 
Aholiab, and every wise-hearted man " among 
the Jews when the tabernacle was to be made ; 
and so, doubtless, it is His good Spirit which in- 
spires men with all knowledge, and the skill of 
the craftsman, for " every good and perfect gift 
comes from above." The baptismal font in our 




CHURCH AND MISSION HOUSE, SARAWAK. 

church is, I think, particularly pretty. It is a 
very large white shell ; so large that a baby could 
be dipped into it if need be. It stands on a 



CHINESE. 117 

wooden pedestal, which I meant should be carved 
like a branch of coral, but the carpenters could 
not manage it, so it is only a fluted column; but 
it was Papa's idea to put old father ocean to 
contribution. The church was not finished until 
January, 1851, when the Bishop of Calcutta 
paid us a visit, and consecrated it ; but a great 
many events happened in the meanwhile. 

In August, 1850, there was a war at Sambas, 
between the Chinese, who were friendly to the 
Dutch, and who were settled at Penankat, and the 
Montrado Chinese (with the Dyaks of the country, 
to help them,) who rebelled against the Dutch 
Government. The Montrados beat the Penankat 
Chinese, and they fled from the place, carrying 
with them their wives and children, and what- 
ever goods and property they could cram into 
their boats. The boats were overladen, and 
many of them perished at sea, but some reached 
Tanjong Datu. On the 26th of August, 400 of 
these poor creatures arrived at Sarawak, saying 
there were 3000 more starving on the sands at 
Datu, who would follow as soon as they could ; 
and, in course of time, most of them did find 
their way up the river, though Papa and the 
magistrates in charge of the government at 



118 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

Sarawak, did their best to persuade them to 
make a town at Santubong, the entrance of the 
Sarawak river, and settle there; but the gold 
workings up the river were too great a tempta- 
tion to them, and every day brought boats, full 
of Chinamen, into the place. Our Rajah fed 
these poor people for months with rice, and gave 
them tools that they might clear the ground, and 
make gardens in the jungle. At first, before 
they could build themselves houses, the whole 
place seemed upset by them, many lived in their 
boats, every shed and workshop in the town was 
full. One night Papa walked into the church, 
then unfinished, to see that all was safe there, 
for it was a great temptation to these poor people 
to steal the planks, which were piled ready for 
building. All was quiet ; but, by a stray moon- 
beam, Papa perceived that the boarded east end 
of the church was full of mosquito curtains, and 
they as full of sleeping Chinamen. Such a 
thing could not be allowed nails knocked into 
the polished walls, to tie the curtains to; tobacco 
perfuming the place, sirih juice squirted about, 
to say nothing of a considerable allowance of 
bugs, which Chinese people always carry about 
with them. Papa jumped straight into the 



INFLUX OF CHINESE. 119 

middle of the canvass curtains, with a shout, 
and, amidst a hubbub of Chinese tongues, yaw, 
yaw, and laughter, bundled them all out into 
the workmen's shed, close by, where they could 
sleep safely amongst the shavings, and do no 
damage. Even walking in the main strait of the 
town, at that time, I have seen mosquito curtains 
set out in the open air, so full to overflowing 
were the houses. Of course amongst such a 
number of people, who had undergone so many 
hardships, there was a great deal of sickness. 
Papa had so many patients that he asked the 
Rajah to build a hospital, which he did, a tem- 
porary place at first, and afterwards the upper 
part of the fort was appropriated to this purpose. 
Our good Rajah supplies all the medicines for 
the inmates of the hospital, as well as for all the 
sick in the place; he allows them food, and a 
servant to wait on them ; Papa is their doctor, 
and teaches the missionaries to assist him. The 
first day the hospital was opened twenty beds 
were occupied. It will hold twenty-eight, and 
these have all been filled sometimes. It occurred 
to Papa, when all these Chinese strangers came 
to Sarawak, that some of them would be glad to 
have their children brought up with our seven 



120 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

little orphans. He went therefore to Aboo, the 
Chinese magistrate, and offered to take ten chil- 
dren into our house, to be brought up as Chris- 
tian children, baptized and educated for ten 
years. 

The Chinese know something of the value of 
education, and were very glad to give them to 
us. I shall never forget sitting in the porch one 
morning to receive my new family. Often neither 
parents nor children could speak any Malay; 
they walked up the steps leading a little boy or 
girl, nodded and smiled at me, then put the 
child's hand into mine, as much as to say " there 
take it;" then I called one of my Chinese ser- 
vants who could interpret to me in Malay, and 
made him tell the Papa and Mama what I would 
do for their child, and how, if I took it, it must 
be really mine, until it was grown up. In this 
way we took Sunfoon, and Salion, Chinzu, Quy- 
fat, Assin, Unique, Achim, boys; Achong, Mok- 
moy, Poingzu, girls. None of them could speak 
any language except Chinese. When they came 
to us it was necessary to have a Chinese servant 
always with them, to tell us what they said and 
wanted. Then the Chinese tailor, and Elizabeth 
and I, were all busy making them new clothes 



SCHOOL AT SARAWAK. 121 

and mosquito curtains. In the course of a week 
they were all clean and neat their heads nicely 
shaved, with their long tail of hair plaited 
smoothly behind, and tied with red and black 
silk; wide blue cotton trousers fastened round 
their waists; and blue jackets, adorned down the 
front and at the wrist with little ball brass 
buttons. The girls dressed just like the boys, 
except that their jackets reached to the knee. 

On Sunday they had white jackets to wear at 
church, and every evening to walk out in, and 
round wide straw hats fastened under the chin, 
with a string of beads, the colour of which tells 
which child it belongs to. These ten children 
soon learnt to talk Malay: then we took five 
more, and after that, one now and then, until our 
school numbered twenty-seven with our seven 
little orphans. I scarcely think twenty-seven 
English children would have been so soon and 
easily reduced to order as our little foreigners ; 
their ages varied from eighteen months to twelve 
years; only six were girls, yet they were docile 
and obedient, and followed each other like a flock 
of sheep. And now I will tell you how my 
children spend their day they rise at half-past 
five, which is as soon as the day dawns : the little 



122 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

boys, with their towels and soap in their hands, 
go down to a little stream, about a hundred 
yards below the house in the jungle, and bathe. 
They have a servant with them, who sees that 
they wash themselves properly. The little girls 
bathe in Elizabeth's bath-room in the house. 
Then the great boys run to church, and, when 
the bell in the porch gives them notice, they 
ring the church bell for early service. It goes 
for ten minutes ; and then, all the rest of the 
children having eaten a great slice of cold rice 
pudding for their early breakfast, attend the 
short morning service. It takes about twenty 
minutes, when they sometimes have a walk, if I 
am with them, and the morning is not too hot ; 
but more often they return home, and sit down 
to learn their lessons. By seven o'clock there is 
quite a buzzing of conning lessons down stairs at 
the long table of the school-room, which goes on 
till half-past eight, when the cook brings in an 
immense red earthern jar of boiled rice, and 
another smaller jar of fish, and vegetables cur- 
ried; a pile of plates and spoons, and little tin 
mugs and a teapot. The books are all cleared 
away, and two boys (they all take it by turns), 
set the breakfast, the plates and spoons all down 



MEALS OF THE SCHOOL. 123 

the table, and the tin mugs, and the children in 
their places before them. Elizabeth then comes 
in, and the two boys bring her the plates to be 
filled with rice, and have a proper quantity of 
curry juice, fish, and vegetables put over it. No 
one begins till all are served, then they sing a 
grace " We thank the Lord who gives us food, 
and all things else we have of good." A great 
clatter of spoons follows, and there used to be a 
great deal of talking, until I made a point of 
going down when I heard the grace sung, and 
sitting at the head of the table, when, if any 
little tongue began, I took up the plate, and 
threatened to remove it; once or twice I really 
took it away, and they soon learnt that a good 
breakfast was better than empty talk. 

When all have finished they repeat a thanks- 
giving grace, the fragments are collected on one 
plate for the dogs, and two boys sweep the room 
out for school. From ten to one they are at 
lessons; the three eldest girls come up to me, 
the boys and little ones have an English school- 
master, and two Chinese masters, to teach them 
English and Chinese reading, writing, arithmetic, 
and geography. At one they have some more 
rice pudding and a little play. From two to 



124 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

four lessons again, and the girls sewing; half- 
past four dinner, which is a repetition of the 
breakfast, only that they have sometimes fowls 
or pork curried, and sometimes eggs; at five 
they go to church for afternoon service, and, 
when that is over, I give them a singing lesson 
to the harmonium, which they like very much ; 
they have learnt many simple chants and hymns, 
and sing in good tune, now they have learnt 
some time, but the Chinese are not a musical 
people. The lesson over they take a walk two 
and two in the public road, and when they meet 
the Rajah or Captain Brooke, off go all the hats, 
and they all cry out, " Good evening, Sir." 
The Rajah takes the kindest interest in these 
children : he always stops to speak to them, and 
sometimes he comes to the house to hear them 
sing; at others he sends for them all to come 
across the river to his house, and gives them a 
feast of fruit and cakes, and lets them play in 
his garden ; he is constantly making presents to 
the school, and gives the children all the rice 
they eat, which is not a little. 

On Sundays the children put on their best 
clothes, they leam their catechism in Malay and 
Chinese, and English hymns. After morning 



SCHOOL-HOURS. 125 

church they have a luncheon of cakes, made of 
rice flour, and cocoa-nut, and sugar, and often 
fruit, pine apples and plantains; then they come 
up to me, and I let them have picture books to 
look at in the verandah and dining-hall. Their 
dinner is always curried fowls, which they like 
best, and they have a long walk in the evening 
after Malay service is over in church. At half- 
past seven they all stand round Elizabeth, and 
sing the Evening Hymn, then they kneel down, 
and the Chinese children say the Lord's Prayer 
in Chinese, the Malay children repeat the same 
in Malay : then altogether they say a little prayer 
I taught them in English. The little ones then 
go to bed, and the eldest boys soon follow; the 
little boys sleep in one long room, with a row of 
little beds in it, the eldest boys in a smaller room, 
the girls in a room out of Elizabeth's, on a great 
platform, made into a tent, by a mosquito cur- 
tain, and the youngest in a little crib beside it. 
What peace reigns in the house when they are 
all asleep. 



LETTER XIIT. 

THE CHINESE AT SAKAWAK. 

February 1852. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

After all I told you about our family of 
twenty-seven children, in my last letter, you will 
see that ours is a busy household. There is not 
much inducement to lie in bed in the morning, 
in a climate where the early hours are the fresh- 
est, most cheerful part of the day : consequently 
we rise, not with the lark, for larks we have 
none, but with the wawas and wood pigeons, 
whose soft voices are heard with the dawn, and, 
after a cup of tea, we go to church. Our short 
service over the bell rings again to call the 
Chinese congregation. When I left Sarawak 
there were twenty Chinese adult converts bap- 
tized, and received into our Church. I think 
their attention was first turned to Christianity 
by their children being taken into our school ; 
then Papa sent for a Christian Chinese teacher 
for the school, from Penang, and twice a week in 
the village, and twice a week at the hospital, 
gave public instruction to any Chinese who came 



CHINESE. 127 

to hear Ayoon translating into Chinese what 
Papa said in English or Malay. When Mr. Fox 
came from Calcutta to help Papa these lectures 
fell to his share, and he is learning Chinese, that 
he may be more independent of Ayoon's transla- 
tion. Soon after this a learned Chinese came 
from Sarebas, to set up a scho.ol at Sarawak. 
Papa engaged him to teach our children Chinese 
reading and writing, and employed him also to 
help Ayoon to translate some prayers into Chi- 
nese for our Christians. This led to many con- 
versations with Singsong, as he is called, which 
ended in his desiring to be a Christian himself, 
and having his two little children baptized, and 
his wife instructed in Christianity. 

Our Chinese converts increased, arid their 
heathen neighbours began to mock at them, 
which is generally a good sign that the Devil is 
angry at not having all his own way. At that 
time Papa was very lame with rheumatism in 
his knee, and was obliged to use crutches ; the 
Chinese carpenters told one of their Christian 
companions that it was a punishment inflicted 
upon Mr. M'Dougall by the Chinese gods, for 
interfering with their religion. " He is no longer 
a man," said they, " but obliged to go on four 
legs, like a beast." 



128 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

The Chinese religion is not very well under- 
stood by the people at Sarawak. They think 
there is a Great God, " Lord of Heaven," who, 
having made the world, takes no further notice 
of it. But there are inferior deities, and evil 
spirits innumerable; they also worship their an- 
cestors, and once a year make a great feast, 
which they spread out of doors before the Joss- 
house (place of worship), and a number of gar- 
ments cut out of coloured paper, trousers and 
jackets, which they present to the ghosts of their 
forefathers, to wear till the day comes round 
again ; I have often asked how it was that the 
ghosts never came either to eat the feast or 
claim the paper clothes, although they were called 
by a stunning noise of gongs and drums, and a 
kind of clashing cymbal, which is deafening to 
mortal ear. " Well, they do not come, so we eat 
the feast ourselves." This, I suspect, is the rea- 
son why it is still offered. The dishes are most 
curious sucking pigs baked and standing in the 
dish on their four legs, with a lime in their 
mouths; fowls and ducks roasted, and their 
feathers stuck on again, placed in every imagin- 
able attitude. The Chinese in reality worship 
their stomachs, or, as a man once said to me, 



CHINESE FESTIVALS. 129 

" their God likes to see them eat." One curious 
notion they have, which shows their consciences 
are still awake. In every house stands an altar 
a table gaily decorated with coloured paper, 
and tinsel, and on which perfumed sticks are 
burnt every day, and prayers offered. A god, 
they say, on this altar listens to, and records, all 
that is done in the house, and just before the 
new year he goes up to give his account to a 
greater Deity in heaven; he stays some days 
away, and if the Chinese think that he has not 
returned on the right day, they call him with 
their noisy music, and, taking a little image of 
him into the street, they throw dirt at it, and 
abuse him for neglecting his duties. 

The new year is the grand festival of the 
Chinese, it falls in February. They are obliged 
to pay up all their debts on that day, and so 
great is the disgrace incurred, if they do not, 
that they sometimes take a strange way of doing 
it, by breaking into other people's hpuses, and 
committing most daring robberies; so as the 
debts are paid, it matters not where the money 
comes from. The English at Singapore, where 
the Chinese are numerous, are obliged to be very 
watchful over their property about the time of 

K 



130 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

the new year. A lady there told me, that as 
she was sitting in her drawing-room one morn- 
ing, a Chinaman walked in, took the French 
clock off the side table, tucked it under his arm, 
and walked out again. She was so astonished at 
his audacity, and the quickness with which he 
did it, that before she could call to the servants, 
thief and clock had both vanished out of the 
compound, and she never saw them again. They 
are clever thieves ; a natural cool impudence and 
great ingenuity fits them for this accomplishment. 

The last time I was at Singapore, the Chinese 
of the place built a new Joss-house, and con- 
secrated it by a wonderful procession, which cost 
them 40,000 dollars, nearly 9000. I believe 
there was not a poor Chinaman, however low 
his wages, or wretched his condition, who did 
not subscribe towards it. 

The procession was at night, by torchlight, 
and passed all through the town. I sat outside 
the shop of one of the principal Chinese mer- 
chants, with many other ladies, and saw it to 
advantage, for, out of respect to this merchant, 
every curious or beautiful thing made a pause 
before his door. It took two hours walking past, 
and was a complete masquerade; birds, beasts, 
fishes, butterflies, and flowers, were all repre- 



- CHINESE PROCESSION. 131 

sented ; some as lamps, most delicately made and 
painted, some alive and in motion. The most 
striking was an enormous sea-serpent, ingeniously 
contrived by drapery thrown over cushions ; un- 
der each cushion walked a man, concealed by the 
hanging cloth, who managed to move the cushion, 
so as to resemble the spinal bone of an immense 
serpent undulating in mid-air; the head, with 
huge open jaws, and a great red tongue lolling 
out, was carried by a man who flourished it from 
side to side of the crowded street, as if it would 
devour the bystanders, while another man walk- 
ing backwards, held a long spear, with which he 
pretended to attack the monster, and deter him 
in every dash he made at the populace. This 
serpent extended the whole length [of two long 
streets, and was the most striking feature of the 
procession. There was also a monster elephant, 
but not so well made. Numbers of young chil- 
dren, dressed in the richest costumes, and with 
their faces painted, acted pantomimes on stages 
carried by porters, some were on horseback. No 
one could explain this procession to me, but I 
think all the ranks and grades in China, and every 
profession and calling, down to the humblest 
water-carrier, was there represented as taking 
K 2 



132 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

part in the homage to the god of the new Joss- 
house. There were Mandarins of all sorts of 
buttons, designating their various ranks; military 
and civil officers, trades, manufacturers, and ar- 
tizans, fine ladies and poor women, and even mad 
people and idiots imitated by the most clever 
pantomime. The embroidered banners were 
beautiful pieces of work; indeed, the procession 
must have cost the labour of months, as well as 
the outlay of a great sum of money. When will 
our English people show such an unanimous zeal 
for their religion? When will all ranks and 
classes of men, high and low, join together to do 
homage to the God who pours His benefits upon 
them ? When they all know and feel that their 
happiness and peace of mind in this world de- 
pends upon their consecrating all they have to 
God's service. There is no station in life so 
high that it is not ennobled by devotion to God, 
nor any so mean, that He will not accept its con- 
secration to Him. I thought so when I saw the 
barbers, the carpenters, the water-carriers, and 
lamp-lighters, in the procession of the Singapore 
Joss : yet it must be a great change for a China- 
man to give up this gaudy, noisy, sensual reli- 
gion, for the heart-worship of Christianity. It 
is delightful to see our poor Chinese coming 



DYAK CHINESE. 133 

twice a day, after morning and evening service, 
to say their prayers in church. On Sunday, 
besides the usual prayers, they have a lecture on 
the gospel for the day, or some portion of scrip- 
ture from Papa, translated into Chinese by Sing- 
song, sentence by sentence. 

The population in China is so numerous that 
the men are obliged to emigrate in large numbers 
to other countries ; it is, however, contrary to 
the law of the land, that any woman should 
accompany them ; so the poorest men leave their 
wives, to make their fortunes elsewhere, hoping 
always to return some day to their families, and 
meanwhile sending all the gold they acquire to 
their mother country. But though this is gene- 
rally the plan, there are exceptions. The Chi- 
nese who originally settled in the Dutch territo- 
ries of Borneo married Dyak women, and their 
children again grew up and married Chinese, 
until there is a sturdy race of Dyak-Chinese in 
the country. Many of these people are now 
settled at Sarawak, and, as they are very indus- 
trious, being the gardeners, carpenters, and 
smiths of the place, we are very anxious that 
they should become Christians, and carry the 
good news of the gospel with them, should they 
ever return to their own country. 



134 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

There are now three clergymen besides Papa 
at Sarawak, or rather one resides there, and the 
other two are teaching the Dyaks at Lundu and 
Linga ; so that Papa can often leave the place 
for a time, and visit the Dyaks up different 
rivers, without the church services or duties at 
Kuching being stopped, during his absence, on 
these occasions. Papa takes a medicine chest 
well stored, with him, a box of tobacco, and 
various presents for his wild friends ; a few pairs 
of spectacles^ generally, among the number; for 
they think so much of the Englishman's eye 
physic indeed, the difficulty is to persuade 
them that there is any illness Papa cannot cure 
if he tries. I have often heard him say to old 
people, whose sight is gone from age, or who, for 
the same reason, are cramped with rheumatism, 
" Your ailment is age, I cannot cure it." " Very 
true," say they ; " but God will let you make us 
better if you try." 

I am now going to send you in the next few 
letters extracts from Papa's Journal, during a 
month's excursion he took, with Captain Brooke, 
up the Sakarran and Rejang rivers. Papa was 
ill and lame at the time, but he thought the 
change of air would do him good, and that, 
meanwhile, he .could be doing good to others. 



RESTRAINTS ON THE PIRATES. 135 

He had a large boat, paddled by thirty men, and 
a little room built in it, shaped like a tent, and 
painted blue and white. This room just held a 
little couch, for Papa to lie on, and his clothes 
and stores. The expedition was undertaken to 
make peace between certain principal Dyak tribes 
who had long been at war, and to build a fort on 
the Rejang river, similar to the one at Sakarran, 
where an Englishman, Mr. Steel, and some Malays 
were to live, and prevent the neighbouring tribes 
from going past with pirate fleets. These rivers 
do not belong to our Rajah, as do the rivers of 
Sarawak, Lundu, and Samarahan. But, by 
means of his great influence with the natives, 
and the wholesome fear of an English steamer, 
he has hitherto been able, since the last punish- 
ment at Sarebas, to restrain these people from 
piracy, and induce the well-disposed amongst 
them to assist him in so doing. These expedi- 
tions, the building of forts, and storing them 
with arms and ammunition, is a great expense to 
the Rajah; but he has always devoted himself 
and all he has to the good of those within his 
influence, and would think himself richly re- 
warded for all his outlay, if he could see these 
wild people laying aside their fierce, bad habits, 



136 LETTEES FROM SARAWAK. 

and becoming as happy and peaceful as his own 
subjects at Sarawak. 

On the 17th of April, 1851, Captain Brooke, 
the Rajah's nephew, and representative in his 
absence, accompanied by Mr. St. John and Papa, 
set off for Sakarran, on their way to the Rejang, 
and two of the Malay Datus, in their large war- 
boats, went also. Captain Brooke was in the 
" Jolly Bachelor," the Rajah's gun boat. Papa 
in the Layang (Swallow) ; there was also a cook- 
ing-boat, under the command of Cassim, a Malay. 
The little fleet only got part of the way down 
the river the first day. They stopped at a vil- 
lage to have the sides of their boats raised, by 
the addition of attaps, or mats made from the 
Nepa Palm, which grows all along the banks of 
the rivers, near their mouths, where the salt tide 
comes up from the sea. We will leave them 
there while I tell you all the uses this palm is to 
the natives. The leaves make the thatch of 
their houses, and also the walls, when they are 
sewn together with split rattans. From the 
juice of the tree they make a fermented drink, 
something like sweet beer, and also good brown 
sugar. The young shoots are eaten in curries 
and salads. The fruit makes a good preserve and 
pickle. But the most valuable production of a 



KEPA-SALT. 137 

Nepa Palm to a Dyak is the salt they make from 
the ashes of the leaves : to obtain this they first 
burn the leaves and stem of the tree, and care- 
fully wash the burnt ashes in water; this water 
is then boiled until it is evaporated, and the salt 
it has washed out of the Nepa leaves remains at 
the bottom of the pot. It is nasty black-looking 
stuff, and has a bitter taste, but the Dyaks 
esteem it far superior to bright white sea-salt, 
and will pay a great price for it. If you ask 
them why they like it, they say, " it is a fat salt." 
Papa visited an establishment for the making of 
this salt, at a village called Sibow, on the Rejang 
river. 



LETTER XIV. 

JOURNAL OF A TRIP UP THE REJANG. 

March, 1852. 

MY DARLING BOY, 

Papa's boat was so deeply laden, and the 
sea so high outside the mouth of the Sarawak, 
that he determined to remove to the Jolly 
Bachelor, until they were in still water again. 
So they ran out to sea, and a fine wind carried 
them into the Batang Lupar, a beautiful river, 
which, fifteen miles from the mouth, is four 
miles across, with pretty wooded islands, standing 
here and there in the deep stream. Just before 
they anchored, seven bold pigs swam by, crossing 
the river. These pigs live in great numbers in 
the jungle, and think nothing of a swim of four 
miles to the places where they know there are 
trees laden with ripe fruit. Papa says, " About 
sunset a sow and family of wild pigs passed us; 
we jumped into a boat and gave chase: hard 
work we had of it, with five fellows paddling, to 
come up to them, they swim so very fast. We 
speared and sabred six, one an enormous brute. 



SEKVICE IN THE BOATS. 139 

The Lingas say, that within these last two months 
they have taken three hundred pigs." They cer- 
tainly are a different species from the Indian hog 
or European boar: they have enormous heads, 
and are capital jumpers; I have known them at 
Sarawak leap a fence nearly six feet high : they 
stand high on their legs, and the males are very 
shaggy on the head and neck : some are black, 
and some are white. 

At Linga they anchored about sunset, and 
found Mr. Brereton and a party of Sakarrans, 
who were come on purpose to agree with the 
Lingas about their treaty of peace. The next 
day was Sunday. Papa had service on board the 
" Jolly," and preached to his little congregation 
of five Englishmen. The Sakarran chief, Gila 
Brani, and many of his followers sat on deck, 
watching in respectful silence the progress of the 
service ; they were much struck with Papa's cas- 
sock, and the responses made by the English. 
Papa adds, " I am sure our daily prayers and 
services, while on these excursions in our boats, 
which are necessarily in public, have a great and 
good effect upon ourselves and upon the native 
mind; and I am most thankful that all our Eng- 
lish, at Sarawak, are always ready to join and 
assist in them. 



140 LETTERS PROM SARAWAK. 

" Last night I had one of those remarkable 
escapes which have once and again, in the course 
of my life, plainly shewn the preserving hand of 
my Heavenly Father in saving me from death. 
I came upon deck about one in the morning, and 
was sitting over the stern enjoying the moonlight, 
and watching the rushing of the fearfully rapid 
tide, when the crutch of the boom, to which I 
was trusting for support, gave way, and over the 
stern 1 went, expecting to be carried under the 
boats and drowned. Though a good swimmer, I 
should have had very little chance in such a race 
of water; while, had I managed to escape that 
danger, I might have been taken by Some shark 
or alligator, with which the river abounds. I 
had seen a large shark swimming round us that 
morning during service. But God, in His mercy, 
ordered better for me ; the swing of the vessel, 
at the moment I fell, brought the dingy or 
schooner's boat, which, a few minutes before, was 
distant the whole length of its painter or rope, 
close under the stern, so that I fell across her 
bows, and received no injury except a bruise on 
the arm from the keel on which I fell, and by 
which I hauled myself into the boat. * Praise 
the Lord, my soul, and forget not all His 
benefits; who redeemeth thy life from destruc- 



JARS OF PEACE. 141 

tion ; and crowneth thee with mercy and loving- 
kindness.' ' 

The fleet had to wait in the Linga river for 
several days, until the Balow Dyaks could fetch 
the jars they meant to exchange with the Sakar- 
rans as a sign of peace. I do not remember 
having told you anything about these jars. Every 
Dyak tribe possesses some, according to their 
riches and importance. They are large brown 
coloured jars, with handles at the sides, and 
sometimes figures of dragons on them. No one 
would suppose, from their appearance, that they 
were worth more than the common earthen water- 
pots we use in our bath-houses, but to the Dyaks 
they have the value of remote antiquity. They 
say their ancestors bequeathed them to them, as 
the property of the tribe, therefore they never 
part with them, except by exchange for similar 
ones, as tokens of amity with other tribes. The 
Chinese have often had jars made so closely to 
imitate them, that they have hoped to sell them 
to the Dyaks for large sums; but they have 
never yet deceived them. They detect a difference 
where no European or Chinese eye can, and at 
once pronounce them of no value ; yet forty dol- 
lars is the price they put upon their least esteemed 
tajoivs, and the more rare ones could not be pur- 



142 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

chased for hundreds of dollars. These jars 
remind me of a story of a little Dyak child, who 
was taken prisoner in the expedition of 1849, 
against the Sarebas pirates. His father was 
killed, and the boy, who was about eight years 
old, was brought to the Rajah. For several days 
the little fellow seemed happy in his captivity; 
but then he begged to speak to the " Tuan Rajah," 
and told him confidentially that he knew a place 
in the jungle where certain valuable tajows, be- 
longing to his tribe, were secreted, and, if he 
would land him with a party of Malays, he would 
point out the place. The Rajah believed the 
child, the jars were found, and taken on board 
the boat ; then the boy again went to the Rajah, 
and bursting into tears, he said, " I have given 
you the riches of my tribe, and now in return, 
give me my liberty, set me doAvn in a path I will 
shew you in the jungle, give me some food, and 
in two days I shall reach my home and find my 
mother." The Rajah answered, " My poor child, 
I would willingly do as you ask me, but I fear 
you will be lost in the jungle, and will die before 
you reach your home ; for how can such a child 
as you know the way ? " However, the boy per- 
sisted, and the Rajah gave him whatever he 
wished for a china cup, a glass tumbler, a gay 



TAILED-MEN. 143 

sarong, and some food, and the little fellow 
set off, on the jungle path, with his bundle 
on his back, joyful enough; and, as we after- 
wards heard, rejoined his mother and friends in 
safety. 

Now some more of Papa's Journal. " While 
at breakfast this morning, one of the men told 
me he had seen the people with tails, who are so 
much the objects of curiosity with us. They live 
fifteen days up a river in the interior of Bruni 
(a Malay or Dyak always measures distances by 
so many days' journey, as we find distances 
measured in the Old Testament). It is a large 
river, but in some places runs through caverns, 
where they can only pass on small rafts. He 
was sent there by Pangeran Mumeem to get 
goats, as these tailed gentry keep a great many 
of them. He says their tails are as long as the 
two lower joints of his middle finger, fleshy and 
stiff. They must be very inconvenient, for they 
are obliged either to sit on little logs of wood 
made on purpose, or to make a hole in the earth 
to accommodate their tails, before they can sit 
down. These people do not eat rice, like most 
Dyaks, but sago cakes baked in an iron pot. In 
their country, he says, is a great stone fort, with 
nine large iron guns, of which the people can 



144 LETTERS FKOM SARAWAK. 

give no account, not knowing when or by whom 
it was built. 

" After dinner, when the men sit round me, 
and smoke cigars which I give them, they soon 
enter into conversation; without this sign of 
friendship and good will, they would not open 
their mouths, but sit round like mutes. We 
spoke a good deal to-day on the subject of re- 
ligion, the difference between Christianity and 
Mahometanism, and above all, the absurdity of 
their repeating the Koran like so many parrots, 
without understanding one word of what they 
say, and the real irreverence of addressing God 
in words they do not understand, and in which 
their hearts and feelings can take no part. They 
agreed with me, that it would be desirable to 
understand God's law for themselves, and not 
trust merely to the Hadjis, who are often as 
ignorant as they are. A respectable old Bruni 
man, in speaking of the separate races of people, 
Avhite, black, and yellow men, all coming from 
one parent, said that he had visited a tribe of 
white people, who lived on a high hill, a few days 
in the interior of Bruni, and had seen them many 
times ; they are very white, the women beautiful, 
with light hair, and the blue veins shewing in 
their skin. The men wear a chawat (waist cloth) 



DYAK FABLE. 145 

like the Dyaks ; the women, a long black robe, 
tight at the waist and puffed out at the shoulders. 
The tradition of their origin, which he learnt 
from them, is as follows : A long time a^o, an 

' O O 7 

old man, who lived on this mountain, lost him- 
self in the jungle at the foot of it, and at night, 
being tired and afraid of snakes and the evil 
spirits of the wood, he got up into a tree and fell 
asleep. He was awoke by a noise of ravishing 
music, the sweetest gongs and chanangs and 
voices, over his head ; the music came nearer and 
nearer to the place where he was, until he heard 
the sound of those sweet voices under the tree, 
and looking down, he beheld a large clear foun- 
tain opened beneath it, and seven beautiful white 
females bathing. They were all of different sizes, 
like fingers on a man's hand, all naked, and they 
sang and sported in the moonlight. He watched 
them a long time, and thought how much he 
should like to get one of them as a wife for his 
only son ; but being afraid of descending amongst 
them, he made a noose with a long rattan, lowered 
it gently, and slipping it over one of them, drew 
her up into the tree. She cried out, and all the 
rest disappeared with a whirring noise. The 
girl he caught was very young, and cried sadly 

L 



146 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

because she had no clothes on. Nothing would 
quiet her, until he rolled her in his chawat, she 
was then still; and he immediately heard the 
gongs at his own house, which he had thought 
was a long way off, so he got down and carried 
his prize home. He and his wife took the greatest 
care of the girl, and brought her up as a daughter, 
until she was old enough to marry their son. 
She was very good and sweet-tempered, and 
everybody loved her. In course of time she had 
a son, white like herself. One day her husband 
was in a very violent temper, and beat her; she 
besought him not to make her cry, or she should 
be taken away from him and her child, but he 
did not heed her, and at last pulled off her jacket 
to beat her; immediately another jacket was 
dropped with a great noise from the sky upon 
their house; she put it on, and then vanished 
upwards, leaving her child, who was the ancestor 
of the present tribe. Who would have thought 
of a Dyak Undine ? " 

While the Malay was telling Papa this story 
they were waiting in a sheltered nook of the 
Sakarran river for the bore to pass, before they 
dare venture up to the fort. They listened for 
its rushing, with thrilling interest, and then, fol- 



CONFERENCE. 147 

\ 

lowing in its wake, got up to the fort about 
eleven o'clock at night. " Found," Papa writes, 
" Brereton in council with his Dyaks. These 
Sakarrans are fine fellows, and will, I think, 
really reform when peace is concluded, and if 
we can place a missionary in these rivers, good- 
will and Christianity may be established among 
them." 

The next few days were taken up with hearing 
all the Sakarrans and Lingas had to say about 
their claims on one another. They had long 
been at war; and six years before, when the 
Rajah prevailed on them to make peace, they 
made and broke it the same day, each finding 
fault with the other on the occasion. But there 
could be no comfort for either tribe, until they 
left off taking each other's heads; the Lingas, 
lying lower down the river, could cut off the 
Sakarran trading boats, one by one, and the 
Lingas dare not venture up the river for the 
same reason. At last matters were arranged, . 
and a platform being made under a spreading 
banyan tree, on a piece of neutral ground, Cap- 
tain Brooke and the English who were with him, 
the Malay Datus and the Dyak chiefs assembled 
there, and Captain Brooke made a speech to 

L 2 



148 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

them and the multitude who stood around. He 
described the evils of piracy and war, and said 
he had come from the Rajah to make them 
brothers, and that, when peace was made, who- 
ever broke it should be accounted the enemy of 
the Rajah, as well as of the offended tribe. He 
then presented the chief of each tribe with a jar 
a spear, and a Sarawak flag, as a present from 
the Sarawak Government, and a witness of their 
good-will to one another. Papa adds : " Nothing 
could be more picturesque than the whole scene, 
the surface of the river dotted all over with the 
formidable, sea-serpent-like bangkongs, gaily 
painted, and adorned with streamers and flags of 
all colours, contrasting with the solemn jungle 
back-ground. A hopeful sight it was to behold 
these wild children of nature, to whom piracy 
and war has been hitherto a glory, almost a vir- 
tue, throwing aside revenge and mutual hatred, 
and, against all their customs and all the prompt- 
ings of their evil natures, listening to the few 
words of the Englishman, and then determining 
to live henceforth in peace. Gassim and Gila, on 
the part of Sakarran, and Tongat Langit (Staff 
of heaven), the Linga chief, joined hands, and 
each tribe killed a pig with great ceremony, the 



VISIT TO A CHIEF. 149 

necessary feat being to strike the head off at one 
blow. Then they feasted and rejoiced together." 
" Thursday, April 24th. Started early in the 
morning to visit Gassim, at his farm-house, where 
we breakfasted. Captain Brooke dispensed pre- 
sents of looking-glasses, etc., to the women, and 
I physic to the sick. The house had about 
twenty doors (which means that twenty families 
were living in it), and all the people look well- 
fed and contented, and more or less good-looking ; 
their houses clean and comfortable, furnished 
with beautiful mats. They all seem well-off, 
easy, independent people, frank and manly in 
their demeanour. I saw no heads, but I did not 
ask for any. A raised seat was made for Cap- 
tain Brooke, and we sat round it. Gassim's 
house must be seventy or eighty miles from the 
sea. The river here is about as wide as the 
Thames at Chertsey. After staying as long as 
we could, on account of the tide, the people 
followed us down to the boat, expressing their 
disappointment at our leaving so soon. The 
main body of the tribe live two days and a half 
higher up the river. Still farther in the interior 
are a race of men who build no houses, but live 
in trees, and subsist by the chase. I hope to 



150 LETTEBS FROM SARAWAK. 

visit them some day. Both Gassim and Gila, on 
my leaving, represented to me their desire of 
following Tuan Padre's brother (the missionary 
who was promised them) ; when he came, they 
said, they would build him a house, and take 
care of him, and make their children and people 
learn what he would teach them. On our way 
down the river we stopped for a time at the fort, 
then bade adieu to Willie Brereton, whom may 
God preserve, and give a right judgment in all 
things in his important charge." We will leave 
Papa on his way from the Sakarran river to the 
Rejang, where we shall hope to follow him in 
our next letter. 



LETTER XV. 

CONTINUATION OF THE JOURNAL OF A TRIP UP 
THE REJANG. 

April, 1852. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

Captain Brooke, and his little fleet, pro- 
ceeded down the Sakarran river into the Batang 
Lupar again, and from thence to the Rejang, a 
magnificent river, thirteen fathoms deep close to 
the bank, and not troubled with a bore. The 
boats' crews paddled at the rate of from twenty- 
five to thirty miles a day; and they were four 
days getting as far as the Kenowit river, on the 
banks of which, at its junction with the Rejang, 
the new fort was to be built. Papa describes 
the scenery of the Rejang, during these four 
days, as follows : 

"April 28th. Brought up in a magnificent 
reach of the river, which is here eighty miles 
from the sea, half a mile broad, and very deep 
up to the banks; wild nutmegs and a great num- 
ber of jungle fruit-trees grow on either side, and 
greatly excite my men as we pass by. They are 
like boys in England coveting apples, and when 



152 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

I do let them land, they yell and screech for joy. 
They scramble up the trees like monkeys, and in 
an incredibly short time, every fruit-bearing 
bough is lopped crff by the parangs of the climbers ; 
while those beneath gather the fruit as it comes 
down. They are most destructive to the trees, 
and rather than lose an inaccessible morsel, down 
comes the whole tree in no time. They brought 
me, this afternoon, a fruit in colour, size, and 
shape like an Orleans plum, but tasting just like 
a mango buahrowa they call it, and another 
green fruit, with a thick fleshy skin, tasting like 
a green almond; they eat both skin and kernel, 
but say that if given to a dog or cat, it kills them. 
We saw some beautiful orchideous and other 
flowers to-day, indeed, these banks are enchant- 
ing. Earth, water, and air seem to have com- 
bined together to bring forth the greatest variety 
of the grand, elegant, and fantastic in form, 
fashion, and colour, that vegetable nature can 
produce; from the finest grasses to the graceful 
waringa, and lordly tapang trees; and the ear 
and smell are as much pleased as the sight, by 
the full joyous note of the burong boya, and the 
delicious fragrance of the flowering trees and 
plants." 

Again, on the 29th, when they were at Sibow, 



SUGAR-CANES. 153 

the Nepa salt manufactory " The soil here and 
all along the river is magnificent. The vegetables 
and fruit growing in the gardens at this place, 
which have no culture, but are left entirely to 
themselves when planted, are most luxurious. 
A man in the next boat is sucking a stick of 
sugar-cane, which cannot be less than two inches 
and a half in diameter. There could not be a 
finer country for growing sugar and cotton." Do 
you know, Charley, we Sarawak folks are as fond 
of sucking sugar-cane, as a little boy I know is of 
sugar-candy. When my children walk out of an 
evening, some kind Chinaman often cuts them a 
bundle of canes to take home ; then we cut them 
into short lengths, pare the skin off, and sit down 
to our feast, which I confess is rather a mess, 
for the juice runs down your fingers faster than 
you can swallow it, and all the stringy texture of 
the cane has to be put out of your mouth again : 
but it is very pleasant and refreshing when you 
are thirsty. 

To return to Papa. " The whole of our way 
to day, the river was like a lake, often a mile or 
more broad, with a succession of beautiful islands. 
Ships of the largest burden might sail up and 
down this river for more than one hundred miles, 
without a single danger, and small vessels very 



154 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

much farther. To day I shot a beautiful crested 
falcon. 

" May 1st. Arrived at Kenowit. A tribe of 
Milanows have been induced to corne here and 
settle quite lately by the Rajah. Within the last 
few weeks they have built two long and substan- 
tial houses, raised thirty feet from the ground, 
on trunks of trees, some two feet in diameter. 
There are in all sixty doors or houses. The 
tribe furnishes three hundred fighting men, and 
numbers from fifteen hundred to two thousand. 
The bachelors, as with the Dyaks, have a separate 
dwelling. Tanee's tribe, who are returning to 
Sibow on the Rajah's promise of a fort at Ke- 
nowit, are of the same tribe, and number about 
three hundred men. They speak the Milanow 
language, and have the same customs of burial. 
The men and some of the women are tattooed in 
the most complicated and grotesque patterns. 
When you look at them closely, the invention 
displayed in them is truly remarkable ; but at a 
distance, they give a dusky, dingy appearance to 
the men, as if they were daubed with an inky 
sponge. Nature having denied them beards, 
they try to make up for the deficiency by the 
quaintest serpentine curly locks tattooed along 
their faces, and always bordered by a vandyke 



KENOWIT CHIEF. 155 

fringe, which must task their utmost ingenuity. 
The common dress of the men is like the Dyaks ; 
but instead of a number of small rings in their 
ears, the lobe of the ear is itself stretched into a 
ring, so as in many cases to reach the shoulders, 
and to this the women hang large heavy brass or 
tin ornaments. The poor little infants' faces are 
horribly distorted by the discomfort and weight 
of these masses of metal, which they are obliged 
to wear at the earliest age, or their ears would 
never arrive at the desirable state of deformity 
so much admired by their parents. Tanee, who 
has followed us with some of the warriors of his 
tribe, is the very exquisite of a Kenowit. He is 
made like a Hercules, and is proud of shewing 
his strength and agility, whenever an opportunity 
oifers. He piques himself upon having the best 
sword, of fine Kyan make and native metal, and 
the strongest arm in his tribe. He sits most of 
the day sharpening one or another of these 
swords, feeling and looking along its edge, to see 
that the weapon is in perfect order, then to prove 
it he seeks for a suitable block of wood, as thick 
as his arm, severs it with a single blow, gives a 
yell, and with a grin of delight returns the 
weapon to its sheath. His jacket is of scarlet 
satin, his long hair is confined by a gold em- 



156 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

broidered handkerchief; his chawat is of fine 
white cloth, very long, and richly embroidered, 
the ends of which hang down to his knees. He 
wears behind an apron of panther's skin, trimmed 
with red cloth and alligator's teeth, and other 
charms ; this hangs from his loins to his knees, 
and always affords him a dry seat. Most of the 
Dyaks here wear mat aprons of like sort ; they 
say they are a great comfort in paddling. 

Tanee's boat is a long tamooee, made out of 
one tree, like out river canoes, but much lighter 
and faster. His cabin is a raised platform, in 
the centre of the boat, covered with a mat, which 
is hung all round with weapons and trophies of 
war, Kyan fighting coats of bear and buffalo 
hides, having bead or shell head-pieces attached, 
shields, and spears, all gaily decked with argus 
feathers, or human hair dyed red." All the time 
Papa was travelling in his boat from one Dyak vil- 
lage to another, he was busily employed as a doctor. 
" Had a young man brought to me, with a deep 
cut about four inches above his ancle. I strapped 
and bandaged him, and he appeared very grate- 
ful." Another day, "as usual, held my levee; for, 
as soon as the people see I am up and have bathed, 
without waiting for me to dress, they come with 
the sick and ailing, and much impede the pro- 



RELIGION. 157 

gress of my toilet. May 1st. I remained in my 
boat most of the day, and had plenty to do in 
administering to the sick, who came to me in 
boat- loads. Finding myself so beset with patients 
in my boat, that I could get no peace, I told the 
chief of the Kenowit village, Sikali, that he might 
come for me in the afternoon, and I would see 
the sick at his house. Accordingly I went, took 
my medicine chest, and had an afternoon's hard 
work at dispensing. 

" Sunday, 4th. Brooke, St. John and I, landed 
from our boats, and took up our abode at Pala- 
bun's house, at one end of the verandah. After 
breakfast I physicked the people, and then we 
had the morning service, much to the surprise of 
the natives, who, however, did not disturb us. 
They sit round us all day, hearing and asking us 
questions. I had a long talk with Sikali about 
religion. It is plain that neither he nor his 
people have any. They seem to be a mixed race, 
between the Kyans and Milanows, speaking the 
Milanow language, and using the dress, arms, 
tattooing, and boats of the Kyans. 

" The Kyans of the interior are just now in 
great dread of the small pox. Cum Nipa, a 
great Kyan chief, whom we hoped to visit during 
this excursion, and who has sent messages of 



158 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

friendship and presents to the Rajah, has, we 
hear, lost two of his children by this fatal disease ; 
and he and his tribe have left their houses, and 
taken to the jungle, until it abates. It will pro- 
bably kill half of them." Since this was written, 
Papa has sent vaccine to Mr. Steel, who has been 
in charge of the fort at Kenowit, and he has vac- 
cinated numbers of the natives, a blessing they 
can well appreciate, for the terror with which they 
regard small pox makes them neglect everything 
when it appears amongst them ; their crops are 
unsown or unreaped, their occupations discon- 
tinued, even the sick are neglected, and they live 
on what roots or fruit they find in the jungle, 
until it has passed away. 

" Cum Nipa's people live much further up the 
river; they say it would take us six days to get 
there in a fast Kyan boat, and at least ten in our 
own, as there is a heavy fresh down the river at 
this time. The river there, they tell us, is as 
large as the Sarawak at Kuching. The Kyan 
houses are planked, and roofed with balean attaps, 
and have raised seats of polished wood round the 
rooms ; this is a great improvement on a common 
Dyak house, with mat walls and open lath floors, 
on which you must sit cross-legged. Palabun's 
people are larger than the Dyaks, with straighter 



RESPECT TOWARDS THE RAJAH. 159 

hoses, and look very like wild Irishmen; the 
women have peculiar long oval eyes, and are tall 
and well made, but, like the men, dirty and dingy 
looking, and by no means so prepossessing as the 
sleek, shiny skinned, upright, agile Sakarrans. 

" Our old friend Pa Jenna, the Dyak Orang 
Kaya of Poe, who was kept a prisoner at Sara- 
wak, to frighten him and his tribe from piracy, 
came down to see us; he has evidently a great 
liking for us, and does not forget that, instead of 
being killed for a pirate when he was taken pri- 
soner, as he expected, he was well and kindly 
treated at Sarawak. This has had a very good 
effect ; he has now the greatest confidence in us, 
and says he will follow the Rajah in all things, 
and gladly learn our religion, if we will send 
some one to teach him, as he and his people know 
nothing of God." 

Pa Jenna paid me a visit at Sarawak, soon 
after this. The Rajah was in England, but Pa 
Jenna coming into my sitting room, immediately 
espied his picture hanging against the wall. I 
was much struck with the expression of involun- 
tary respect, which both the face and attitude of 
this untutored savage assumed as hestood before 
the Rajah's picture: he raised the handkerchief 
from his head, and saluting the picture with a 



160 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

bow, such as a Roman Catholic would make to 
his patron saint's altar, he whispered to himself, 
1 Our great Rajah.' This is not the only time, 
Charley, that I have seen how deep, in the hearts 
of the natives, lie love and reverence for Sir 
James Brooke the least occasion calls it out. 

When our Rajah last left us to spend a year 
in England, we established a custom of invari- 
ably seasoning our glass of wine after dinner, 
with a wish for his welfare and speedy return to 
us. One day the old Orang Kaya of Lundu 
came in with his followers just before our usual 
toast, and we gave him a glass of wine, saying, 
" To the Rajah " he raised the glass in both 
hands, " Peace to our Rajah," said he then, 
tossing off the wine, he continued, with folded 
hands and bowed head, to pray that " God 
would be with him and bless him in all his ways." 
It was a heartfelt prayer and solemn blessing on 
one who had indeed been his friend and bene- 
factor, but there was not a person in the room 
nor in Sarawak who would not heartily have 
said " Ainen." 



LETTER XVI. 

THE CONCLUSION OF, THE JOURNAL OF A TRIP UP 
THE REJANG. 

May, 1852. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

I will now continue Papa's Journal. 
" At the junction of Kenowit with the Rejang is 
a point of land commanding both rivers; this 
was the building site for the fort which is to 
prevent the Dyak fleets coming down the Ke- 
nowit, for piratical excursions, and to protect 
the Kenowits and all peaceable traders. The 
men of our flotilla of twenty boats, from seven 
to eight hundred, have all landed to pull down 
the temporary fort already erected by the Ke- 
nowits, and to cut wood to build it on a larger 
scale. It is to have four guns, besides swivels, 
on the turrets or parapet, and iq to contain a 
house within for Abong Duraup, the present 
commandant, our Patinghi's brother and his men, 
and a powder magazine. It is to be built chiefly 
of balean, and roofed with balean attaps. Seriff 

M 



162 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

Messour with five prahus, came from Serrekei to 
help to build the fort: he says he reads the 
Malay Bible I gave him last year, and likes it. 

Monday 5th. Captain Brooke called a coun- 
cil to-day, at which the Orang Kayas that had 
come to meet us were present Garingei, Lang, 
Nawi, Pa Jenna, Palabun and Sikali. They were 
told that the fort was building for their good, to 
prevent their fighting with each other, or going 
out in fleets to pirate, but now they could trade in 
safety, get their salt and all things cheaper; and 
if they lived at peace and encouraged trade, 
they would become rich and comfortable, and 
their countries full of people. In the afternoon 
there was a great commotion in the house, and 
all the women set up the most dismal howlings 
imaginable, news having arrived that Palabun's 
brother, who had left two years ago with a party 
of fourteen, to visit a friendly tribe in the inte- 
rior, near the Pontianak waters, had been killed, 
with six of his companions, in a most treacherous 
way ; the people that he and these six men lived 
with asked them to go out in the war path to 
take some heads, and while they were out, for 
whatever reason, they killed the whole party: 
perhaps they could get no heads, and rather than 



MOURNING FOR A CHIEF. 163 

return without any, took those of their friends ! 
or, what is more likely, they quarrelled among 
themselves. Palabun's brother is said to have 
been a very high-spirited, brave young man. 
Palabun himself is dreadfully distressed at his 
death, and swears vengeance, but we hope to 
pacify him before we leave. The whole tribe 
goes into mourning for three months ; the women 
cut their hair, lay aside all their ornaments, and 
wear bark clothes. They keep up their howling 
also during that time. All the property of the 
deceased is collected and launched forth in a 
boat, no one of the tribe daring to touch any- 
thing that belonged to a dead man. 

Tuesday 6th. The women kept up dismal 
weepings during the night. In the morning I 
went to see the young chiefs things laid out 
preparatory to their being sent on their fruitless 
journey after him. They were all arranged 
under a canopy, made of his sarongs, two were 
of rich gold cloth (value about fifty dollars each), 
and the rest of his wardrobe was disposed under 
it, so as to represent a corpse on a bier ; the gold 
ornaments alone, consisting of large buttons, a 
breastplate, and a very rich and handsome kris 
handle of ancient Javanese, or Indian manufac- 
M 2 



164 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

ture, representing a figure of Buddha, cannot be 
worth less than two hundred dollars: besides 
this there were gongs and two brass guns. Two 
women were lying by the bier on either side the 
effigy, and the father, a very old man, sat beside 
it watching; the women every now and then 
raising a mournful howl. In three days these 
things will be launched down the river in a boat 
made for the purpose, and if any one were known 
to touch it he would be slain. If the body had 
been recovered, it would have been launched 
with its former property in the boat. This is 
the invariable mode of burial with the Milanows. 
The general fate of these funeral barks is to get 
capsized, when the things all go to the bottom; 
but should a Malay happen to fall in with such a 
treasure, he would not scruple to appropriate it, 
and of this Palabun was doubtless aware, as he 
took care not to send away Iris brother's property 
until we had left the river. 

This foolish custom, of which they can give no 
account, except that they received it from their 
fathers, prevents any valuables or heir looms re- 
maining in the tribe. For, when a man dies, all 
he possesses is, they say, sent after him, lest he 
should want it hereafter; yet they can give no 



WAR-DANCE. 165 

account of their ideas of a future life. May they 
soon know, and have the hope of, a happy eternity 
through Jesus Christ our Lord. The fort was 
finished building to-day, and, when the guns 
arrive from the gun boat, we shall return. Be- 
fore dinner we were entertained with a Kenowit 
pantomime war-dance. Two men appeared, fully 
armed, supposed to be on the war path looking 
for heads, keeping time to the beat of the torn 
toms. They seemed to go through all the mo- 
tions of looking out for an enemy, watching 
behind a tree, palling out the ranjows from the 
path (these are sharp pieces of cane, stuck into 
the ground, with their points upwards, to wound 
the feet of their enemies). At length they de- 
scry one another, dance defiance, and, flourishing 
their swords and shields in the most agile man- 
ner, they commence the attack. It was most re- 
markable to witness the nimbleness and skill 
with which they managed their shields, covering 
their bodies so that it was impossible to get a 
stroke at each other. They say that, in a real 
combat, to strike the shield is certain death, for 
the sword sticks in it, and cannot be withdrawn, 
before the man whose sword is free rushes in. 
After a time one of the combatants fell wounded, 
and covered his body with his shield. The other 



166 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

danced round him triumphantly, and. with one 
blow, pretended to cut off his head; then, with 
the head in his hand he capered about with the 
wildest gestures, expressive of the very ecstasy 
of savage delight; but, on looking at his trophy 
closely, he recognised the head and features of a 
friend, and, smitten with remorse, he replaced it 
with great solicitude; then moving with slowly 
measured tread, he wept, and, with many sighs of 
grief, refixed and adjusted the head the greatest 
care; caught rain in his shield, and poured it 
over the body; then he rubbed and shook the 
limbs, which, by degrees, resuscitated, and be- 
came invigorated by his mesmeric-like passings 
and chafings, from the feet upwards ; each limb, 
as it revived, beat time to the music, first faintly, 
then with more and more vigour, till he came to 
the head, and, when that nodded satisfactorily, 
and the whole body of his friend was in motion, 
he gave him a few extra shakes, lifted him on his 
legs, and the whole scene concluded by their 
both dancing right merrily. This dance is quite 
characteristic of their habits of attacking indis- 
criminately the first person they meet when they 
go out on the war path to take heads. 

A few years ago it would have been very dan- 
gerous for us to have been with these people, 



MANNING THE FORT. 167 

when the news of the young chief's death arrived. 
They are in the habit, on these occasion of be- 
reavement, of making a vow to go forth and kill 
the first persons they meet ; and like Jeptha's, 
their rash vow often brings desolation to their 
own household. Sikali, the chief of the next house, 
a few years ago lost a child and brother, he went 
out with his followers, met a party of his own 
tribe returning home, and slew them all. Tanee 
did the same on a like occasion. Palabun, per- 
suaded by Captain Brooke, gave up his ideas of 
retaliation for his brother's death, on condition, 
that Captain Brooke, should endeavour to get 
satisfaction, through Cum Nipa's influence, from 
the Kapuas people. 

The guns arrived last night ; they were moun- 
ted at the fort before breakfast, and a garrison of 
70 men, under Abong Duraup and Galo, ap- 
pointed to guard it. At midday there was an- 
other council, at which the Sakarrans and Keno- 
wits expressed their purpose to abide by the Ra- 
jah's injunctions, and not to pirate again. After 
this, the flag was hoisted at the Fort and saluted. 
I dispensed a stock of medicine to my patients 
with directions how to use it ; one of the head 
men, Henion, is, from last week's treatment, 
almost restored to sight, and will be quite so, if 



168 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

he perseveres in following my advice. After this, 
I had again a talk with Palabun, about becoming 
a Christian, and he repeated his earnest desire of 
having a Missionary sent to him and his people. 
There cannot be a more favourable position for 
one. 

Thursday 9th. At sunset we pulled after the 
"Jolly," caught her at the Serrekei River, got on 
board, and sent our boats to make the best of 
their way to Sarawak we hope to be there first. 
After our month's cruize to the River Sakarran 
and other pirate haunts, how wilfully ignorant 
and blind appear to us the tirades of some people, 
who pretend that these tribes are not piratical 
If they could see the desolation of fertile tracts of 
country, the insecurity of life and property, the 
precautions against attack, and the continual fear 
and dread in which the well-disposed people live 
within reach of the pirates if, in these pirates' 
houses, they could see the piles of smoked heads 
of Malays, Dyaks, and Chinese, and the traces of 
plunder, and hear them recount their past prowess 
in the fights they have won, and the heads they 
have taken, they would certainly doubt no longer. 

One of the Sakarran chiefs, Rentab, has in his 
house two brass guns, taken from a Dutch armed 
boat, which put out after him, when he was 



RETURN HOME. 169 

making a raid on the Sarebas coast ; she got a- 
head of the others in the chase, and kept firing 
into the Dyak balla, when a ball killed a son or 
nephew of Rentab, which so enraged the Dyaks, 
that they turned round upon her, boarded, and 
killed every man in the boat, forty, and took their 
heads. Even old Gassim's eye lights up, when 
he talks of his former exploits. He once attacked 
Sirhassin, one of the Natunas islands, and has 
often ravaged the Chinese, and other settlements, 
on the Dutch parts of the island." 

Thus ends Papa's Journal, and I cannot tell 
you Charley, the joy, with which on Sunday, 
May llth, when I was sitting reading after church, 
the sound of gongs, arid boat music, fell on my 
ear, and my servant Quangho, running in, infor- 
med me, that " our Tuan was coming," we all ran 
down to the wharf, to welcome, and bring them 
home. 



LETTER XVII. 

MALACCA. 

June, 1852. 

MY DEAKEST BOY, 

On Feb. 19th, 1852, I left Singapore in 
the little steamer " Hooghley," to visit Malacca 

and our kind friends, Dr. and Mrs. T , who 

live there. Twenty-two hours' voyage brought 
us to our destination ; and when I looked out of 
my cabin window, early on the morning of the 
20th, I saw that we were at anchor, but a long 
way off the shore, for mud and sand-banks have 
gradually accumulated in the harbour, until it is 
impossible for any vessel deeper than a small 
schooner to run near the land. So we got into 
a boat, and enjoyed the pretty view of Malacca 
as we approached it. If you look at the map, 
you will see tha.t the town is situated on the 
narrow tongue of land called the Malayan Pe- 
ninsula. Six centuries ago, a Malay Prince, 
called S'ri Iscander Shah, was driven from Sin- 
gapore by his enemies, the Javanese. He and 
his followers wandered about in their boats till 



ACCOUNT OF MALACCA. 171 

they carne to this coast, where they landed. The 
Prince stood under the shade of a fine tree, while 
one of his dogs roused a white mouse deer, or 
Plandok; but the deer stood at bay, and drove 
the dog into the water. " This is a fine place," 
said the Rajah, " the very Plandoks are full of 
courage; let us found a city here." Accordingly, 
they did so, and called it Malacca, which was the 
name of the tree under which the Prince stood 
on first landing. This is the Malay story ; and 
they add, that the city prospered and increased 
so much that, at the end of a hundred years, the 
colony contained 190,000 inhabitants. 

In the year 1561, a fleet of Portuguese, led by 
the famous Alphonso Albuquerque, conquered 
Malacca, and drove the Malay Rajah to Johore, 
a country near the extreme point of the Penin- 
sula. So the Portuguese held Malacca for more 
than a hundred years, and built forts on the hills, 
the ruins of which are still standing. Then the 
Dutch made friends with the Malay Rajah, who 
lived at Johore, and offered to help him to recover 
his former kingdom ; but, when they had beaten 
the Portuguese, they kept Malacca for themselves. 
The natives, indeed, were but badly treated, by 
either the Portuguese or Dutch ; and it was a 
happy day for them when an English fleet sailed 



172 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

into the harbour, in the year 1795, and made the 
Dutch surrender to the British flag. Since that 
time the Dutch have had the place again, for a 
few years ; but the English at last gave them the 
fine island of Sumatra, in exchange for a few 
little settlements on the coast of India, of which 
Malacca is the most important; and, as before 
this, the English had destroyed all the forts 
which the Portuguese and Dutch had built to 
defend themselves against the natives, I. dare say 
the Dutch thought themselves well off in the 
bargain. 

The inhabitants of Malacca, from the place 
having passed from the hands of one European 
nation to another, are a curious mixture of races 
Portuguese, Malay, Dutch, and English, are 
so intermingled, that you may go into a gentle- 
man's house, and see an old Malay grandmother, 
dressed in her sarong and baju ; and if you know 
her language, she will introduce you to her son, 
a dingy Portuguese man or thickset Hollander, 
whose half-English wife will tell you that her 
daughter, Rose, must go " home to be educated." 
While you are wondering whether the " home " 
is Johore, Lisbon, or Amsterdam, you hear that 
it is England, which place neither parents nor 
grandparents most likely ever saw. 



HILLS NEAR MALACCA. 173 

On the hill of St. Paul are the ruins of an old 
convent, " Our Lady of the Mount," built by 
Albuquerque, and they say visited by St. Francis 
Xavier, a Roman Catholic missionary of great 
fame. One of the pretty hills in the neighbour- 
hood is called by his name, and several Romish 
saints are buried there. I have twice walked up 
this hill at sunrise; the view from it is lovely, 
for the country of Malacca is one vast garden of 
fruit trees and cocoa-nuts, and waiving plains of 
paddy, which at this season reminds one of our 
English harvest. The grain resembles oats, and 
is cultivated in immense fields, bounded by 
groves of trees, and watered by small ditches, 
which you cannot see when the corn is high. 
This beautiful prospect is varied by the blue sea 
on one side, dotted with little wooded islands, 
and the fine mountains of Ophir inland. On the 
top of the hill of St. Xavier is a clump of An- 
senna trees, growing in the midst of the old fort, 
which you may trace round the top of the hill. 
Indeed, every hill seems to have been crowned 
by its fort, except St. Paul's, on which stood the 
convent. Now, the hills are Chinese burying 
grounds. There is a large colony of Chinese in 
Malacca : and so' fond are they of the place, that 
many Chinese, who grow rich, and spend most of 



174 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

their years at Singapore, Penang, or other settle- 
ments, buy their places of buria], and build their 
tombs at Malacca. This converts the country 
about the coast into a great cemetery, which, as 
you drive past, does not supply you with many 
cheerful ideas, especially if you happen to meet 
any signs of their miserable devil worship, scraps 
of riband or gilt paper scattered over the grass, 
to keep away the antoos. The Dutch made the 
nave of the convent church into a churchyard 
for themselves, and the English have converted 
the chancel into a powder magazine. A flagstaff, 
on the summit of this hill, tells the people of the 
town all about the ships at sea. The flags of 
different colours and patterns which they hoist, 
shew whether it is a steamer, ship, brig, or 
schooner which is passing, where she comes from, 
and whither bound. All this is very interesting, 
in such a quiet, dull place as Malacca, where it 
is not often that a large vessel puts in, on account 
of the bad harbour. We have spent part of our 
time here, at a Bungalow fifteen miles from the 
town, which is called Ayer Panas (hot water), 
from its vicinity to a hot spring in the midst of 
a paddy field, so hot, that you cannot bear your 
hand for a moment in the spring, and it smells 
of rotten eggs, from its having sulphuretted hy- 



POLICE STATION. 175 

drogen gas always bubbling up through the water. 
Papa, had a little shed built over the spring, and 
a bath put in it, where he used to sit for an hour 
every morning, besides drinking the nasty hot 
water, to cure his rheumatism, which became so 
much better from this treatment, that at the end of 
a week he could walk with us of an evening in 
the fine jungle, which surrounded the house. The 
little Bungalow, in which we lived, was a police 
station, placed there to watch the country round, 
and especially the settlements of Chinese who 
were employed in working the tin mines, about 
two miles further in the jungle, and who were 
sometimes very unruly. While I was at Malacca 
several murders were committed, in the constant 
quarrels between these Chinese miners and their 
Malay neighbours. Fifteen or twenty Peons, 
Malay policemen, slept in the lower part of the 
Bungalow, and we lived in the upper story. At 
night these men lighted an immense wood fire 
before the door, to frighten away tigers, for the 
jungle of that country is infested by these savage 
beasts; and the night before we arrived, they 
said there were two prowling about the house. 
The knowledge of this often made us quicken our 
steps, if the beauty of our evening walk led us 
so far from home, that the twilight began to close 



176 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

round us before we reached it ; but I never felt 
in any danger except once, the last evening before 
we left Ayer Panas. 

Papa and I set off as soon as the heat of the 
day abated, to visit the tin mines in the jungle- 
It was broad day -light, and I laughed at the per- 
tinacity of a tall Malay Peon who insisted on fol- 
lowing us close, with a sword at his side, lest a 
tiger should cross our path. What a lovely walk 
it was ! the fine trees of the deep woods were 
peopled by birds and monkeys, who seemed 
calling to us to know what we wanted in their 
domain the bright branches of the orange- 
coloured Ixora, and delicate blue Justicia; the 
pink Kammunting (mountain gooseberry), and 
the lilac Melastoma, made the pathway gay as a 
garden. We walked on, scarcely speaking and 
half- dreaming, as one feels disposed to do in such 
a still evening scene, till we heard the fall of the 
pump at the mines, and presently the voices of the 
Chinese. Then Papa said " You had better not 
go amongst the miners, they are a rude uncouth 
set ; sit down on a bank, the Peon shall guard you, 
and I will just go and look at the workings:" so 
I, glad of a rest, sat still and amused myself with 
the antics of some great monkeys, at a little dis- 
tance, who were getting their supper and playing 



RUNNING A RISK. 177 

games in a high tree. I soon heard Papa and 
the miners laughing very heartily, and felt sure 
he was making friends with them, as Papa knows 
how to do with most people. But after a time 
the voices ceased, the light began to fade out of 
the sky, the monkeys finished their supper then. 
I turned to the Peon, and said " You must go to 
Tuan and tell him to return, it grows late and 
will be dark before we reach home; I will walk 
slowly along the path, so that you may overtake 
me." To tell the truth, I was anxious at Papa's 
staying so long amongst the Chinese miners, for 
whom I had no great respect; but it was not 
until I had proceeded some little distance along 
the wood, that it occurred to me how near a tiger 
might be in the thicket beside the path, and how 
utterly defenceless I was, should he spring out- 
then the turn or fall of every leaf in that silent 
wood, made me start, and it was with no small 
pleasure that I saw our servant coming to meet 
me, and heard Papa's voice behind, and the Peon 
with him, whose sword I no longer despised. We 
reached home, thank God, in safety, although it 
was quite dark, and my friend, who was putting 
her baby to sleep in the house, looked quite 
alarmed at the risk we had run. 

N 



178 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

The tin ore looks something like emery powder, 
and is mixed with a quartzose sand. The Chi- 
nese smelt it, until it is a pure metal, and cast it 
into long blocks, in which state they sell it for 
nineteen dollars a hundred-weight, and it is sent 
to Europe. There is much gold found by the 
Chinese at Mount Ophir, in the interior of the 
country, but Papa was not well enough to explore 
where there were no roads, or he would have 
ascended this fine hill. 



LETTER XVIII. 

THE LIFE OF SIR JAMES BROOKE. 

November, 1853. 

MY DEAREST CHARLEY, 

The life of a great man is a spring of 
good actions arid generous impulses to others, 
and cannot be too well known and studied ; for 
in proportion to our love and sympathy for what 
is excellent, we become capable of the virtues 
which we admire. For this reason I now pro- 
pose writing you a short history of Sir James 
Brooke, our English Rajah; for, although you 
are well acquainted with him personally, and his 
name is to you a household word, there are many 
of my young friends who will read these letters 
who may be rather puzzled at the frequent men- 
tion of an Englishman possessing such a foreign 
sounding title, and who may wish to hear how 
he became an Eastern sovereign, and how he 
gained such influence over the half-civilized 
Malays and the wild Dyaks. God gives to every 
one of us the capability of excelling if we add 

N 2 



180 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

our own endeavours to His gifts in the path 
which he marks out for us in this life. We are 
all fashioned differently ; to some He gives one 
talent to others ten. Some are called to public 
life, where the eyes of all men scan and judge 
their actions ; some live so obscurely, that the 
narrow circle of their friends and relations seems 
alone to notice or care for them. But all are 
alike watched by God : it is not a man's grandeur 
or his talents which make him approved by his 
Maker, whose gifts these are; but whether he 
steadily and perseveringly, in the face of all 
difficulties and temptations, follows the path of 
duty, and patiently takes up the crosses which 
lie in his way. This patience and perseverance 
are the qualities which you, even child as you 
are, may imitate in the Kajah's character. James 
Brooke was the son of a gentleman in the Indian 
Civil Service, and was born in India on the 29th 
of April, 1803 : while still a little boy he was 
sent home to England for his education, and thus 
had the disadvantage which belongs to all Indian 
born children, of not knowing his parents in his 
early years. When he was fourteen his father 
and mother returned to England; and it has 
often comforted me to hear the Rajah say that he 



THE LIFE OF SIR JAMES BROOKE. 181 

loved and reverenced his mother, as much as if 
he had been brought up at her side. She was of 
a most gentle and superior nature, wise enough 
to gain the strongest influence over his wayward 
youth, and to encourage him in the love of travel 
and adventure which she saw was most likely to 
develop his character and talents. At the age of 
sixteen he went to India as a cadet, and was 
engaged in the first Burmese war, where he so 
distinguished himself by his gallantry (he fell, as 
was supposed, mortally wounded), as to receive 
the thanks of government. At last he was 
obliged to ask leave of absence and return to 
England to recover from a serious wound which 
he had received in his lungs, and which for a 
long time endangered his life. Little things 
often shew the strength of a person's mind, and 
I think it is worth mentioning, that the Rajah 
has told me he thought his constitution recovered 
its tone by his daring to take a cold bath every 
morning through a severe winter; when many 
thought he was going into a consumption he 
jumped out of bed into his ice-cold bath, and 
became strengthened both in frame and in pur- 
pose by the exertion. 

But I must hasten to the more important 
events of his life. He did not continue in the 



182 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

Indian army after 1820, but travelled in various 
countries, and often retired to some quiet country 
place where he could read and study without 
interruption. In 1830 he made a voyage to 
China, and then saw, for the first time, the islands 
of the Eastern Archipelago; he was struck with 
their beauty, the importance they might be to 
English commerce, and the neglect which had 
hitherto prevented any settlements on their 
shores. When he returned home he could not 
forget that vast island of Borneo, abandoned to 
savages, or the solitude of nature, with the ex- 
ception of a few small Dutch factories on the 
coast. He therefore determined to explore the 
country himself. About this time his father 
died, and Mr. Brooke, having succeeded to a good 
fortune, he purchased a yacht, the Royalist, 140 
tons burthen, and chose and trained her crew of 
twenty men, with the greatest care, during a 
cruise in the Mediterranean; for he said, "I felt 
that it was necessary to form men to my purpose, 
and, by a line of steady and kind conduct, to 
raise up a personal regard for myself, and attach- 
ment for the vessel, which could not be expected 
in ordinary cases. In following this object I 
was nearly three years in preparing a crew to my 
mind, and gradually moulding them to consider 



THE LIFE OF SIR JAMES BROOKE. 183 

the hardest fate or misfortune, under ray com- 
mand, as better than the ordinary service in a 
merchant vessel." 

We cannot suppose that Mr. Brooke had more 
than a general idea at the time he was preparing 
his vessel and her crew for this long voyage, as 
to his object in making it. " I go," said he, " to 
awake the spirit of slumbering philanthropy 
with regard to these islands." Circumstances 
were to decide how this was to be accomplished. 
On the 1st of June the Royalist anchored at 
Singapore. He there learnt that a Malay Rajah 
was then resident at Sarawak, who was friendly 
to the English, and had shewn kindness and 
generosity to the crew of a merchant vessel 
wrecked at the entrance of the river, and to him 
he resolved to pay his first visit. On the 15th 
of August the Royalist anchored abreast the 
town of Kuching, which was described as "a 
collection of huts, erected on piles, and contain- 
ing about 1500 persons." 

What was then a miserable village, is now a 
well built town, containing as many as 20,000 
inhabitants : such is the effect of peace and good 
government. Muda Hassim, the Malay Rajah, 
received Mr. Brooke's visit very graciously. 
There is a great deal of formality about the 



184 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

courts of Eastern Princes, and a number of 
speeches are made at first, which mean nothing, 
before they begin to say anything to the purpose. 
Muda Hassim made all the display he could, and 
was very polite and delighted to see his English 
friend ; and when Mr. Brooke inquired whether 
the war, in which he had heard that he was en- 
gaged Avith his subjects, proceeded favourably, 
he replied, that there was no war, but merely 
some child's play among his subjects, and so the 
conference ended. But this " child's play " 
proved a very serious affair to Muda Hassim 
who at last applied to Mr. Brooke to help him 
with his handful of Englishmen. One vigorous 
charge from this little band sufficed; for the 
warfare of the rebels had hitherto consisted in 
, building forts, from which they could throw 
missive weapons; and Muda Hassim's forces, led 
by corrupt and cowardly chiefs, had never dared 
to attack them. 

Having conquered the rebels, Mr. Brooke pro- 
mised to save their lives, by asking their pardon 
from their Rajah. It was with great difficulty, 
however, that he obtained this mercy for them. 
" I only succeeded," says Mr. Brooke, " when, at 
the end of a long debate, I soliciting, he deny- 
ing, I rose to bid him farewell, saying, that if 



THE LIFE OF SIR JAMES BROOKE. 185 

after all my exertions in his cause, he would not 
grant me the lives of his people, I could only 
conceive that his friendship for me was at an 
end. Upon this he yielded." After this im- 
portant event Muda Hassim begged Mr. Brooke 
to live at Sarawak, and help him to govern his 
subjects, at the same time employing a schooner 
to trade between Sarawak and Singapore. 

The government of Sarawak was as bad as 
the weakness of Muda Hassim and the wicked- 
ness of his nobles could make it. They were 
surrounded by a number of followers whose only 
pay was their being screened from punishment 
by their masters ; these men oppressed the Dyaks 
in the most shameful manner ; they levied heavy 
taxes upon them, and, if they could not pay, 
they took their wives and children as slaves. 
Sometimes they would take a boatload of gongs, 
brazen vessels, etc., to a Dyak tribe, and desire 
them to give them in exchange enormous quan- 
tities of rice, birds' nests, honey, etc. ; it mattered 
not whether the Dyaks wished to buy these 
goods, they were obliged to do so, and at the 
price fixed by the Malays. If a good harvest 
had seemed to ensure them food for the season 
they found it wrested from them, and all the 
fruits of their industry only served to feed the 



186 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

greediness of their oppressors: nor was there 
any remedy, for the courts of justice at Sarawak 
could see no faults in the nobles or their follow- 
ers. No one who is unacquainted with the 
double dealing of eastern courts can imagine 
what a difficult part Mr. Brooke had to play to 
protect the oppressed, and, at the same time, 
maintain his influence over the oppressors. His 
own life was once and again threatened^ and 
Muda Hassim, if he had the will, had not the 
power to defend him. The yacht was several 
times fully armed, and prepared to make what 
resistance she could, when some act of tyranny 
or treachery forced Mr. Brooke to expostulations 
with Muda Hassim. At one time both the yacht 
and the Swift, the merchant schooner, were 
absent; one on an errand of mercy, to demand 
some shipwrecked English from the Sultan of 
Bruni, who was detaining them as prisoners, the 
other at Singapore. Mr. Brooke with only three 
Englishmen remained at Kuching, steadily pur- 
suing his schemes of reform and protection he 
knew no fear, and his whole soul was bent upon 
remedying the evils he saw around him. Mr. 
Brooke agreeing to live at Kuching, Muda Hassim 
built him a house in the town, when just as he had 
taken possession of it, a large force of Sakarran 



THE LIFE OF SIR JAMES BROOKE. 187 

and Sarebas Dyaks with one hundred war boats, 
and not less than two thousand five hundred 
men, came up the river and requested the Rajah 
to allow them to attack a hostile tribe in the 
interior. Muda Hassim gave them leave, know- 
ing full well that their purpose was really to 
destroy all the weak tribes in their way, and 
take the heads of his own subjects. The Chi- 
nese and the Dyaks were in the greatest terror, 
but Mr. Brooke instantly quitted his house and 
returned on board his yacht, sending to the 
Rajah to know whether he had granted the 
pirates such a permission. At the same time 
the guns of the Royalist were prepared for 
action ; and such was the effect of this remon- 
strance, that the pirates, sulky enough, were 
obliged to take their departure. By such acts 
as these Mr. Brooke won the hearts of the people 
of Sarawak, and the respect of its rulers. He 
listened to the sad tales of the poor Dyaks, 
which brought tears to his eyes, and awoke 
within him the most earnest desires to help 
them. " Unhappy people," he says, " who suffer 
for the crimes of others ; God knows I will aid 
you to the utmost of my power;" and his power 
grew daily : for the constant exercise of firmness 



188 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

and justice, with the greatest patience, could not 
but influence all parties. 

I could tell many tales of this trying time, 
when the strong will of one Englishman stemmed 
the wickedness of this eastern court, and sheltered 
its subjects, but my letter would be too long, and 
you must read for yourself Mr. Brooke's Journals 
when you are older. At last Muda Hassim, un- 
able to carry on the government, resigned it into 
the hands of Mr. Brooke; and on the 1st of 
August. 1842, the Sultan of Brtini signed and 
sealed the compact, which gave the province of 
Sarawak to Mr. Brooke and his heirs for ever. 
" I hope," he says, " that this day, so important 
to me, will be marked with a white stone in the 
annals of Sarawak." I wish the Dyaks, whom 
their English Rajah has rescued from slavery op- 
pression and poverty, could tell how well this wish 
has been fulfilled; and that the Malays, who are 
now contented and happy under just laws, justly 
administered, could add their testimony to the 
character of a ruler, who has won them to the 
paths of virtue and industry by unwearied kind- 
ness, firmness and patience. I have known the 
time, when, night after night, the Rajah has sat 
surrounded by his native subjects, drawing out 
their confidence by listening to their histories, 



THE LIFE OF SIR JAMES BROOKE. 189 

and in return instructing them, and amusing 
them by tales and facts, which to them are more 
wonderful than fiction. At night, and under the 
influence of a cigar the Malay is wide awake; he 
tells you long stories, and lets you into all his 
secrets, but there are not many Englishmen who 
have sufficient kindness and patience to be inter- 
ested, and give them all the sympathy their 
hearts require. 

I have, in a former letter, told you the efforts 
which Sir James Brooke has made during his go- 
vernment of Sarawak, to put down piracy, not only 
amongst his own subjects, but the neighbouring 
Dyak tribes ; so I will not repeat the tale. It has 
been hard work to teach savages good faith, mercy, 
and peace ; but, though some of the pirate tribes 
still threaten an outbreak, I believe the day will 
come, when even they will bless his memory, as 
their true friend, for now opposing their evil 
courses, and teaching them to be quiet and in- 
dustrious, even though an occasional chastisement 
be necessary to enforce the lesson. Meanwhile, 
we may hope that the Missionaries, who are now 
stationed near them, may gain sufficient influence 
to win them, by God's grace, to a true faith in 
Him and our Lord Jesus Christ. Then they will 



190 LETTERS FROM SARAWAK. 

" turn their swords into ploughshares," and build 
churches instead of bangkongs ; then instead of 
the terrible war-yell, we shall hear divine songs 
and musical church bells echoing through the 
woods, and the beautiful country and rich soil 
will yield a glad return to the labour bestowed 
upon them. Let us not only pray, but labour, 
for this happy day, for which our good Rajah has 
toiled and waited these ten years, and devoted 
his fortune and health to accomplish. Already 
the dawn of it appears, for there is a strong party 
of men of peace amongst the Sarebas, and at Sa- 
karran they are, I hope, being brought to a better 
mind, by the labours and teaching of a young 
Englishman, Mr. Brereton ; who, by following the 
example of Sir James Brooke, has won the hearts 
of many thousands of the wild Sakarrans. 

" Lives of great men all remind us 

We can make our lives sublime, 
And, departing, leave behind us 
Footprints on the sands of time." 

THE END. 



J. WertheimerSc Co., Printers, Circus Place, London Wall. 



ORIGINAL JUVENILE LIBRARY. 



A CATALOGUE 

OF 

NEW AND POPULAR WORKS, 

PRINCIPALLY FOR THE YOUNG. 




PUBLISHED BY 

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(SUCCESSORS TO SEVTBERY AND HARRIS), 

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LONDON. 

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The Year : its Leaves and Blossoms ; 

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Aphorisms of the Wise and Good. 

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The Wisdom of Solomon ; 

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Light for the Path of Life ; 

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NEW WORKS PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 



NEW AND POPULAR WORKS. 



NEW WORK BY JOHN TINIBS. 

Ancestral Stories and Traditions of Great Families. 

Illustrative of English History. By JOHN Turns, F.S.A. With 
Frontispiece. Post 8vo., price 7*. 6</., cloth elegant. 

NEW WORK BY BARBARA HUTTON. 

Heroes of the Crusades. 

By BARBARA HDTTON, author of " Castles and their Heroes." Illus- 
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NEW WORK BY CAPTAIN DRAYSON. 

Adventures of Hans Sterk. 

The South African Hunter and Pioneer. By CAPTAIN DRATSOX, 
author of " Tales of the Outspan," etc. Illustrated by ZWECKEB. 
Post 8vo., price 5s. Cloth elegant, 5s. 6</., gilt edges. 

NEW ILLUSTRATED EDITION. 

Trimmer's History of the Robins. 

Written for the Instruction of Children on their treatment of Animals. 
With 24 beautiful Engravings from Drawings by HARRISON WEIB. 
Price 6s. Cloth extra, 7s. 6<f. Cloth elegant, gilt edges. 

NEW WORK BY KAY SPEN. 

Our White Violet. 

By KAY SPF.X, author of " Gerty and May," with Illustrations by T. 
S. WALE. Super Royal IGmo., price 2s. 6d. cloth elegant, 3s. 6</. 
coloured, gilt edges. 



NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 



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The Little Gipsy. 

By ELIE SAUVAGE. Translated by ANNA BLACKWELL. Profusely 
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6s. gilt edges. 

Neptune. 

The Autobiography of a Newfoundland Dog. By the aathor of 
"Tuppy," &c. Illustrated by A. T. ELWES. Super Royal 16mo., 
price 2s. 6d. cloth elegant, 3s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 

NEW WORK BY MRS. DAVENPORT- 

Constance and Nellie; 

Or, the Lost "Will. By EMMA DA YEN-PORT, author of " Our Birth- 
days," &c. Frontispiece by T. S. WALE. Fcap. 8vo., price 2s. 6d. 
cloth elegant, 3s. gilt edges. 

NEW WORK BY CAPTAIN MARRY AT'S DAUGHTER. 

Stolen Cherries; 

Or, Tell the Truth at Once. By EMILIA MARRYAT NORRIS. Illus- 
trated by F. A. ERASER. Super Royal 16ino., price 2s. 6d. cloth, 
3s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 

NEW WORK BY HOOD'S DAUGHTER. 

Tales of the Toys. 

Told by Themselves. By FRANCES FREELING BRODERIP. With 
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3s. Gd. cloth elegant, 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 

Alice and Beatrice. 

By GRANDMAMMA. With Illustrations by JOHN ABSOLON. Super 
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Corner Cottage and its Inmates ; 

Or, Trust in God. By FRANCES OSBORNE. With Illustrations by 
the Author. Fcap. 8vo., price 2s. 6tf. cloth elegant, 3s. gilt edges. 

Sunbeam, a Fairy Tale. 

By MRS. PIETZKER. With Illustrations by ALEXANDER CHARLE- 
MAGNE. Small Post 8vo., price 3s. 6<f. cloth elegant. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 



NEW WORK BY CHARLES H. ROSS. 

The Book of Cats : 

A Chit Chat Chronicle of Feline Facts and Fancies ; Legendary, 
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Ross. With Twenty Illustrations by the Author. Post 8vo, price 
4s. (id. cloth ; 5s. gilt edges. 
" A valuable contribution to cat history." Court Journal. 

NEW PICTURE BOOK. 

The Attractive Picture Book. 

A New Gift from the Old Corner, containing numerous Illustrations 
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NEW WORK BY MISS CRAIK. 

Cousin Trix, 

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" Bright and lively, with a well concealed moral." Guardian. 

Castles, and their Heroes. 

By BARBARA HUTTOX With Illustrations. Poet Svo, price 4s. 6J. 
cloth; 5s. gilt edge>. 
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NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 



The Early Start in Life. 

By EMILIA MARRTAT NORRIS 
Post 8vo, price 5s. cloth elegan 

" Mrs. Norris has established her own fame, and her paternity is clearly prored by the 
knack in story telling she inherits from her father.' " Art Journal. 



By EMILIA MARRTAT NORRIS. With Illustrations by J. LAWSON. 
Post 8vo, price 5s. cloth elegant; 5s. 6d. gilt edges. 



NEW WORK BY JAMES GREENWOOD. 

The Bear King : 

A Narrative Confided to the Marines by JAMES GREENWOOD. With 
Illustrations by ERNEST GRISET. Printed on toned paper, Small 4to, 
price 3s. 6d. cloth; 5s. coloured, gilt edges. 

" More than amusing." Saturday Review. 

" Ably supported by Grisot's drawings." Afltenccum. 



Upside Down : 



A Series of Amusing Pictures from Sketches by the late W. 
MCCONNELL, with Verses by THOMAS HOOD. Coloured Plates 4to, 
price 2s. &d., fancy boards. 

" Ludicrous and amusing." Illustrated Times. 

The Little Child's Fable Book ; 

Arranged progressively in words of One, Two, and Three Syllables, 
With Sixteen Page Illustrations by GEORGINA BOWERS. Small 4to. 
price 3s. 6d. cloth; 5s. coloured, gilt edges. 

" Will be a boon to every nursery." Court Journal. 



The Young Vocalist : 

A Collection of Twelve Songs, each with an Accompaniment for the 
Pianoforte, selected from Mozart, Weber, Mendelssohn, Sphor, &c., by 
Mrs. MOUNSET BARTHOLOMEW, Associate of the Philharmonic 
Society. 4to, price 2s. paper cover; or 3s. &d. cloth extra, gilt edges. 

" These Lyrics are selected and composed for children who are too young to sing operatic 
or romantic songs, or too old for those founded on nursery tales. The melodies are all of 
a suitable compass, so that the yoices may not be injured by practice at an early age." 
Extract from Preface. 

" Arranged with the best possible taste and skill." Musical World. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 



The Confessions of a Lost Dog, 

Eeported by her Mistress. FRANCES POWER COBBE. "With a Photo- 
graph of the Dog from Life, by FRANK HAES. Super-royal 16mo 
price 2s. cloth, gilt edges. 

His Name was Hero. 

Frontispiece from a Painting by SIR W. CALCOTT.R.A. Price 1* 
sewed. 

BY THE SAME AUTHOR. 

The Grateful Sparrow. 

A True Story, with Frontispiece. Fifth Edition. Price Gd. sewed. 

How I Became a Governess. 

Third Edition. With Frontispiece. Price 2*. cloth, 2*. Gd. gilt edges. 

Dicky Birds. 

A True Story. Third Edition. With Frontispiece. Price 6rf. 

My Pretty Puss. 

With Frontispiece. Price &d. 

The Adventures of a Butterfly. 

From the French of P. J. STAHL. Seven Engravings. Price 8<f. 

The Hare that Found his Way Home. 

From the French of P. J. STAHL. With Frontispiece. Price Gd. 

CHARLES BENNETT'S LAST WORK. 

Lightsome and the Little Golden Lady. 

Written and Illustrated by C. H. BENNETT. Twenty-four Engravings. 
Fcap. 4to., price 3s. Gd. cloth elegant; 4*. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 



aa " Ure * PUt * me toUCh f * P culiar S 8 " 1 " 8 toto whatever 
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Lady Bountiful' s Legacy 

To her Family and Friends: a Book of Practical Instructions and Duties, 
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fail of being fully appreciated." Morning Post. 

" There is something to be found in this volume about everything which concerns the 
household . ' ' Churchman. 

Nooks and Corners of English Life. 

Past and Present. By JOHN TIMBS. With Illustrations. Post 8vo, 
price 6s. cloth; 6s. 6rf. gilt edges. 

" There is not a chapter in the whole work in which instructive matter is not found. 1 ' 
London Review. 

"A book which ought to find a place in one of the nooks and 'corners' of every 
library." The Reliquary. 

Strange Stories of the Animal World; 

A Book of Adventures and Anecdotes, and curious Contributions to 
Natural History. By JOHN TIMES. Illustrations by ZWECKEK, 
Post 8vo., price 6s., cloth, 6s. &d., gilt edges. 

" Among all the books of the season that will be studied with profit and pleasure, there 
is not one more meritorious in aim, or more successful in execution." Atlienceum. 



Casimir, the Little Exile. 

By CAROLINE PEACHEY. With Illustrations by C. STANTON. Post 
8vo., price 4s. 6d. cloth elegant; 5s. gilt edges. 

" The tone of ' Casimir ' is healthy, and the story will be found no less beneficial than 
interesting." AthentEum. 

Lucy's Campaign; 

A Story of Adventure. By MART and CATHERINE LEE. With 
Illustrations by GEORGE HAY. Fcap. 8vo, price 3s. cloth elegant; 
3s. Qd. gilt edges. 

" The adventures ' Lucy ' goes through are detailed in a remarkably agreeable manner." 
The Queen. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 



Gerty and May. 

By the Author of" Granny's Story Box," and " Our White Violet" 
Illustrated by M. L. VIMNG. Price 2s. 6d. cloth; 3*. 6d. coloured, 
gilt edges. 

" A charming book for children. Though the story is full of fun, the moral is never 
1 ost sight of." Literary C/iurcfitnan. 

Nursery Times; 

Or, Stories about the Little Ones. By an Old Nurse. Illustrated by 
J. LAWSON. Price 3s. 6<l. cloth; 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 

Animals and Birds; 

Sketches from Nature by Harrison Weir, for the use of the Young 
Artist. Eoyal 4to., publishing in parts, price Is. each. 
%* Parts I. and IL now ready. 

BY THE HON. MISS BETHELL. 

Helen in Switzerland. 

By the Hon. AUGUSTA BETHELL. With Illustrations by E. WUYMPEB. 
Super-royal 16mo, price 3s. 6rf. cloth extra; 4*. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" A pleasant variety of local legend and history, mingled with the incidents of travel." 
The Spectator. 

Echoes of an Old Bell ; 

And other Talcs of Fairy Lore, by the Honble. AUGUSTA BETHELL. 
Illustrations by F. W. KEYL. Super royal 16mo., price 3s. 6d. cloth, 
4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" A delightful book of well-conceived and elegantly-written fairy tales." Literary 

Churchman. 

The Surprising Adventures of the Clumsy Boy 

CRUSOE. By CHARLES II. Ross. With Twenty-three Coloured 
Illustrations. Imperial 8vo, price 2s. 

Infant Amusements; 

Or, How to Make a Nursery Happy. With Hints to Parents and 
Nurses on the Moral and Physical Train ing of Children. By W.ILG. 
KINGSTON. Post 8vo, price 3s. 6rf. cloth. 

" We urge parents most strongly to obtain this book forthwith ; we l:now of no book 
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book." Our tireiide. 



10 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 

Taking Tales for Cottage Homes; 

in Plain Language and Large Type. In Twelve Parts, each 
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Complete m Four Volumes, cloth, Is. 6<f.,or 2 vols. extra cloth, 3s. Gd 
each. 

" The terse Saxon terms employed are level to the capacity of the humblest." Bagged 
School Magazine. 
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Featherlancl ; 

Or, How the Birds lived at Greenlawn. By G. "W. FEXN. With 
Illustrations by F. W. KEYL. Super-royal 16mo., price 2s. Gd., cloth, 
3s. 6d., coloured, gilt edges, 

" A delightful book for children. There is no story, but the happiest perception of 
childish enjoyment is contained in fanciful sketches of bird-life." Examiner. 

The Australian Babes in the Wood; 

A True Story told in Rhyme for the Young. Wilh Illustrations 
by HUGH CAMERON, A.R.S.A. ; J. MC\VHIRTIE; GEO. HAY; J. 
LAWSON, &c. Imperial 16mo. Is. Gd. Boards. 2s. Cloth, gilt edges. 

Trottie's Story Book; 

True Tales in Short Words and Large Type. Eight Illustrations by 
WEIR. Price 2s. Gd., cloth, 3s. Gd., coloured, gilt edges. 

Tiny Stories for Tiny Readers in Tiny AVords. 

With Twelve Illustrations by HARRISON WEIR. Third edition. 
Price 2s. Gd. cloth, 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

"Work in the Colonies ; 

Some Account of the Missionary operations of the Church of England 
in connexion with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in 
Foreign Parts. With Map and Sixteen Illustrations. Royal 16mo. 
price 5s., cloth. 

Early Days of English Princes ; 

By Mrs. RUSSELL GKAY. Illustrations by JOHN FRANKLIN. New 
and Enlarged Edition. Super-royal 16mo., price 3s. Gd., cloth, 4s. f>d., 
coloured, gilt edges. 

Pictures of Girl Life. 

By CATHARINE AUGUSTA HOAVELL. Frontispiece by F. ELTZE. 
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" A really healthy and stimulating book for girls. "Nonconformist. 

Pages of Child Life; 

By CATHARINE AUGUSTA HOAVELL. With Three Illustrations. Fcap. 
8vo., price 3s. Gd. cloth. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAIM. 11 

The Four Seasons. 

A Short Account of the Structure of Plants, being Four Lectures 
written for the Working Men's Institute, Paris. With Illustrations. 
Imperial 1 6mo. Price, 3* 6<f. cloth. 

" Distinguished by extreme clearness, and teeming with information of a useful and 
popular character." Guardian. 

Fun and Earnest; 

Or, Rhymes with Reason, by D'ARCT W. THOMPSON. Illus- 
trated by CHARLES H. BENNETT. Imperial IGmo., price 3s. cloth, 
4s. 6</. coloured. Cloth, Elegant gilt edges. 

" Only a clever man with the touch of a poet's feeling in him. can write good children's 
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Nursery Nonsense; 

Or Rhymes without Reason, by D'ARCT W. THOMPSON, with sixty 
Illustrations, by C. H. BENNETT. Second edition. Imperial 16mo., 
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" The funniest book we have seen for an age, and quite as harmless as hearty." Daily 
Review. 
" Whatever Mr. Bennett does, has some touch hi it of a true genius." Examiner. 

Spectropia ; 

Or, Surprising Spectral Illusions, showing Ghosts everywhere and of 
any Colour. By J. H. BROWN. Fifth edition. Quarto. Coloured 
Plates. Price 2s. 6</. fancy boards. 

" One of the best scientific toy books we have seen." Aflieneeum. 
"A clever book. The illusions are founded on true scientific principles." ChrmicaiXeiri. 

WORKS BY LADY LUSHINCTON. 

Almeria's Castle; 

Or, My Early Life in India and England. By LADT LUSHINGTON, 
with Twelve Illustrations. Price 4*. 6rf., cloth, 5s., gilt edges. 
" The Authoress has a very graphic pen, and brings before our eyes, with singular 
vividness, the localities and modes of life she aims to describe." London Renew. 

Hacco the Dwarf; 

Or, The Tower on the Mountain ; and other Talcs, by LADT LTTSH- 
INGTON. Illustrated by G. J. PINWELL. Super royal 1 6mo., price 
3s. 6rf. cloth, 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 
" Enthusiasm is not our usual fashion, but the excellence of these stories Is so greatly 

above the average of most clever tales for the pUy-room, that we are tempted to reward 

the author with admiration. "Athenteum. 

The Happy Home ; 

Or the Children at the Red House, by LADT LUSHINGTOH. Illustrated 
by G. J. PINWELL. Price 3s. Gd. cloth, 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 
" A happy mixture of fact and fiction. Altogether it is one of the best book* of the 
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12 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 

BY MRS. HENRY WOOD. 

William Allair; 

Or, Running away to Sea, by Mrs. H. WOOD, author of " The Chan- 
nings," etc. Frontispiece by F. GILBERT. Second edition. Fcap. 8vo., 
price 2s. Gd., cloth, 3s. gilt edges. 

" There is a fascination about Mrs. Wood's writings, from which neither old nor young 
can escape." Sett's Messenger. 

WORKS BY MRS. DAVENPORT- 

The Holidays Abroad; 

Or, Right at Last. By EMMA DAVENPORT. With Frontispiece by 
G. HAY. Fcap. 8vo., price 2s. Gd. cloth extra; 3s. gilt edges. 
"Its tone is healthy and natural."' Churchman. 

The Happy Holidays; 

Or, Brothers and Sisters at Home, by EMMA DAVENPORT. Frontispiece 
by F. GILBERT. Fcap. 8vo., price 2s. Gd. cloth, 3s. gilt edges. 

Our Birth Days; 

And how to improve them, by Mrs. E. DAVENPORT, Frontispiece by 
D. H. FRISTON. Fcap. 8vo., price 2s. Gd. cloth, 3s. gilt edges. 
" Most admirably suited as a gift to young girls." British Mother's 'Magazine. 

Fickle Flora, 

And her Sea Side Friends. By EMMA DAVENPORT. With Illus- 
trations by J. Absolon. Price 3s. Gd. cloth; 4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges 

Live Toys; 

Or, Anecdotes of our Four-legged and other Pets. By EMMA DAVEN- 
PORT. With Illustrations by HARRISON WEIR. Second Edition. 
Super Royal 16mo. price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
" One of the best kind of books for yonthful reading." Guardian. 



DEDICATED BY PERMISSION TO ROSSINI. 

Little by Little. 

A series of Graduated Lessons in the Art of Reading Music. Second 
Edition. Oblon 8vo., price 3.9. Gd. cloth. 

" One of the best productions of the kind which have yet appeared." Charles Steggall, 
ttus. D.. Cantab. 

Memorable Battles in English History. 

Where Fought, why Fought, and their Results. With Lives of the 
Commanders. By W. H. DAVENPORT ADAMS. Frontispiece by 
ROBERT DUDLEY. Post 8vo. price 6s. extra cloth. 

"Of the care and honesty of the author's labours, the book gives abundant proof." 
Athenceum. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 13 



The Loves of Tom Tucker and Little Bo-Peep. 

Written and Illustrated by TOM HOOD. Quarto, price 2s. Gd. 
coloured plates. 
" Full of fun and of good innocent humour. The Illustrations are excellent." Tht Critic. 

WORKS BY M. BETHAM EDWARDS- 

The Primrose Pilgrimage. 

A Woodland Story, by M. BETHAM EDWARDS, illustrations by T. R 
MACQUOID. Price 2s. Gd. cloth, 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" One of the best books of children's Terse that has appeared since the early davs cf 
Mary Howitt." Xonconjormitt. 
" The Poems are full of interest, and the Illustrations charming."-- .4r< Journal. 

Scenes and Stories of the Rhine. 

By M. BETHAM EDWARDS. With Illustrations by F. W. KEYL. 
Price 3s. Gd. cloth; 4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
" Full of amusing incidents, good stories, and sprightly pictures." Tfte Dial. 

Holidays Among the Mountains; 

Or, Scenes and Stories of Wales. By M. BETHAM EDWARDS. Illus- 
trated by F. J. SKILL. Price 3s. Gd. cloth; 4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 



Nursery Fun ; 

Or, the Little Folks' Picture Book. The Illustrations by C. H. 
BEXXETT. Quarto, price 2s. Gd. coloured plates. 
" Will be greeted with shouts of laughter in any nursery." The Critic. 

Play-Room Stories; 

Or, How to make Peace. By GEORGIANA M. CRAIK. With Illus- 
trations by C. GREEN. Price 3*. Gd. cloth; 4*. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

"This Book will come with 'peace' upon its wings into many a crowded playroom.*' 
Art Journal. 

The Faithful Hound. 

A Story in Verse, founded on fact. By LADY TUOMAS. With Illus- 
trations by H. WEIR. Imperial IGmo, price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3*. Gd. 
coloured, gilt edges. 

Jack Frost and Betty Snow ; 

With other Tales for Wintry Nights and Rainy Days. Illustrated by 
H. Weir. Second Edition. 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
" The dedication of these pretty tales, prove by whom they are written ; they are inde- 
libly stamped with that natural and graceful method of amusing while instructing, which 
only persons of genius possess." Art Journal. 



14 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 

BOOKS FOR BOYS. 

With Illustrations, Fcap. 8vo. price 5s. each cloth. 

Luke Ashleigh; 

Or, School Life in Holland. By ALFRED ELWES. 
" The author's best book, by a writer whose popularity with boys is great." Atheneeum. 

Guy Rivers ; 

Or, a Boy's Struggles in the Great World. By A. ELWES. 

Ralph Seabrooke; 

Or, The Adventures of a Young Artist in Piedmont and Tuscany. 
By A. ELWES. 

Frank and Andrea; 

Or Forest Life in the Island of Sardinia. By A. ELWES. 

Paul Blake ; 

Or, the Story of a Boy's Perils in the Islands of Corsica and Monte 
Christo. By A. ELWES. 

Ocean and her Rulers ; 

A Narrative of the Nations who have held dominion over the Sea; 
and comprising a brief History of Navigation. By ALFRED ELWES. 

Lost in Ceylon ; 

The Story of a Boy and Girl's Adventures in the Woods and Wilds 
of the Lion King of Kandy. By WILLIAM DALTON. 

The White Elephant; 

Or the Hunters of Ava. By WILLIAM DALTON. 

The War Tiger; 

Or, The Adventures and Wonderful Fortunes of the Young Sea-Chief 
and his Lad Chow. By W. DALTON. 

" A tale of lively adventure vigorously told, and embodying much curious information." 
Ilustrated News. 

Neptune's Heroes : or The Sea Kings of England; 

from Hawkins to Franklin. By W. H. DAVENPORT ADAMS. 

"We trust Old England may ever have writers as ready and able to interpret to her 
children the noble lives of her greatest men." Athenceum. 

Historical Tales of Lancastrian Times. 

By the Rev. H. P. DUNSTER, M.A. 

" Conveys a good deal of information about the manners and customs of England and 
France in the 15th Century." Gentlemen's Magazme. 

The Fairy Tales of Science. 

By J. C. BROUGH. With 16 Illustrations by C. H. BENNETT. New 

Edition, Revised throughout. 

" Science, perhaps, was never made more attractive and easy of entrance into the 
youthful mind." The Builder. 

" Altogether the volume is one of the most original, as well as one of the most useful, 
books of the season." Gentleman's Magazine. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 15 

WORKS BY THOMAS HOOD'S DAUGHTER. 

Wild Roses; 

Or, Simple Stories of Country Life. By FRANCIS FREELING BEODEBIP. 
Illustrated by ANELAT. Post 8vo, 3s. 6rf. cloth 4s. gilt edges. 
" Written with tlic grace and truthfulness which the daughter of Tom Hood knowi so 
well how to impart." Art Journal. 

Mamma's Morning Gossips ; 

Or, Little Bits for Little Birds. Containing Easy Lessons in Words 
of One Syllable, and Stories to read. With Fifty Illustrations by 
TOM HOOD. Foolscap Quarto, Us., cloth, 4*. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

Merry Songs for Little Voices ; 

The words by Mrs. BRODERIP; set to music by THOMAS MURBT, 
with 40 illustrations by TOM HOOD. Fcap. 4to., price 5*. cloth. 

Crosspatch, the Cricket, and the Counterpane ; 

A Patchwork of Story and Song. Illustrated by TOM HOOD. 
Superroyal 16mo. price 3s. 6d. cl., 4s. 6<f. coloured, gilt cdi^s. 
" Hans Andersen has a formidable rival in this gentle Udy." Art Journal. 

My Grandmother's Budget 

of Stories and Verses. Illustrated by TOM HOOD. Price 3s. Kd. cloth; 
4s. 6rf. coloured, gilt edges. 

" Some of the most charming little Inventions that ever adorned the department of 
literature." Illuttrated Timu. 

Tiny Tadpole; 

And other Tales. With Illustrations by TOM HOOD. Price 3s. 6<f. 
cloth; 4s. 6<f. coloured, gilt edges. 

" A remarkable book, by the brother and sister of a family in which genius and fun are 
inherited." Saturday Review. 

Funny Fables for Little Folks. 

Illustrated by TOM HOOD. Price 2s. 6d. cl. ; 3s. 6c7. col., gilt edges. 

BY CAPTAIN MARRYAT'S DAUGHTER. 

With Illustrations by various Artists. Super-royal 16mo, price 2*. 6d. 
each cloth elegant, 3s. 6rf. coloured, gilt edges. 

The Children's Pic Me, 

And what Came of it. 

What became of Tommy ; 

By EMILIA MARRYAT NORRIS. 

A Week by Themselves ; 

By EMILIA MARRTAT NORRIS. 

" Our younger readers will be charmed with a story of iotne youthful Crusoes. written 
by the daughter of Captain Mjirryat."--Gittwrfiun. 

Harry at School ; 

By EMILIA MARRTAT. 

Long Evenings; 

Or, Stories for My Little Friends. Second Edition. 



16 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 

LANDELL'S INSTRUCTIVE AND AMUSING WORKS. 

The Boy's own Toy Maker. 

A Practical Illustrated Guide to the useful employment of Leisure 
Hoars. By E. LAXDEIJA. With Two Hundred Cats. Severn "- 
tion. Royal 16 mo, price 8*. 6d~. cloth. 
- A new nd Tahable torn cf 



The Girl's Own Toy Maker, 

And Book of Recreation. By E. and A. LAXDELIA. Fourth Edition. 
With 200 Illustrations. Royal 16mo. price 2*. 6<f. cloth. 
" A perfect magMine f i 



Home Pastime ; 

Or, The Child's Own TOT Maker. With practical instructions. By 
E. LASDELLS. New and Cheaper Edition, price 3*. 6dL complete, with 



%* By this norel and ingenious "Pastime," Twelve beautiful Models can 
be made' by Children from the Cards, 



The Illustrated Paper Model Maker; 

Containing Twelve Pictorial Subjects, with Descriptive Letter-press 
and Diagrams for the construction of the Models. By E. LASDELLS. 
Price 2*. in a neat Envelope. 



THE LATE THOMAS HOOD. 

Fairy Land; 

Or, Recreation for the Rising Generation, in Prose and Verse. By 
THOMAS and JAXE HOOD. Illustrated by T. HOOD, Jnn. Second 
Edition. Super-royal 16mo; price 3*. 6U. cloth; 4t. <k coloured 
gilt edges. 

r^:' ;: "IH :"' ti^ Xir;cr7. ~5 r?cc~~e"il 3,'.. JT:~~ 



The Headlong Career and "Woful Ending of Preco- 
cious PIGGY. Written for his Children, by the late THOMAS HOOD. 
With a Preface by his Daughter; and Illustrated by his Son. Fourth 
Edition. Post 4 to, fancy boards, price 2s. 6</., coloured. 
" TW Dhatratioig are mtfBMlr hmuuuium. m TI>c Critic. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAIM. 17 

BY THE AUTHOR OF " TRIUMPHS OF STEAM," ETC. 

Meadow Lea; 

Or, the Gipsy Children; a Story founded on fact. With Illustra- 
tions by JOHN GILBERT. Fcap. 8vo. price 4t. 6d, cloth; 5*. gilt edge*. 

The Triumphs of Steam; 

Or, Stories from the Lives of Watt, Arkwright, and Stephenson. With 
Illustrations "by J. GILBERT. Dedicated by permission to Robert 
Stephenson, Esq., M.P. Second edition. Royal I6mo, price 3*. 6dL 
cloth ; 4s. 6</., coloured, gilt edges. 
" A most delicious volume of examples." Art Journal. 

Our Eastern Empire; 

Or, Stories from the History of British India. Second Edition, with 
Continuation to the Proclamation of Queen Victoria. With FOOT 
Illustrations. Royal 16mo. cloth 3*. 6d.; 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 
" These stories are charming, and convey a general view of the progress of oar Empire in 
the East. The tales are told with admirable clearness." Atkeiutum. 

Might not Right; 

Or, Stories of the Discovery and Conquest of America. Illustrated 
by J. Gilbert. Royal 16mo. 3*. 6tL cloth; 4s. 6<f. coloured, gilt edges. 
" With the fortunes of Columbus, Cortes, and Pizarro, for the Maple of these stories, the 
writer has succeeded in producing a very interesting volume." lUuitrated Xcvt. 

Tuppy; 

Or the Autobiography of a Donkey. Illustrated by WEIB, Price 
2s. 6d. cloth; 3*. 6 J. coloured, gilt edges. 

" A very intelligent donkey, worthy of the distinction conferred upon him by the artist.*' 
Art Journal. 

Rhymes and Pictures. 

By WILLIAM NEWMAN. 12 Illustrations. Price <x plain, It. 
coloured. 2s. 6</. on linen, and bound in cloth. 

1. The History of a Quartern Loaf. 

2. The History of a Cup of Tea. 

3. The History of a Scuttle of Coals. 

4. The History of a Lump of Sugar. 

5. The History of a Bale of Cotton. 

6. The History of a Golden Sovereign. 

%* N os. 1 to 3 and 4 to 6, may be had bound in Two Volumes. Cloth 
price 2s. each, plain; 3s. Cd. coloured. 

Hand Shadows, 

To be thrown upon the WalL By HEXRT BCRSILL. 1st & 2nd Series 
each containing Eighteen Original Designs. 4:<>.2< each plain ; '2s.6d. coL 
" Uncommonly clever some wonderful effects are produced." TV Preu. 

Old Xurse's Book of Rhymes, Jingles, and Ditties. 

Illustrated by C. H. BEJTXETT. With Ninety Engravings. New 
Edition. Fcap. 4 to., price 3*. 6dL cloth, plain, or 6*. coloured. 
"The illustrations are all so replete with fun and imagination, that we scarcely know 
who will be most pleased with the book, the good-natured grandfather who gives it, or the 
chubby grandchild who gets it, for a Christmas-Box." A'oto a*d Qveriet. 



18 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 

Home Amusements. 

A Choice Collection of Riddles, Charades, Conundrums, Parlour 
Games, and Forfeits. By PETER PCZZLEWELL, Esq., of Rebus Hall. 
New Edition, with Frontispiece by PHIZ. 16mo, 2s. Grf. cloth. 

Clara Hope; 

Or, the Blade and the Ear. By Miss MJLNER. With Frontispiece 
by Birket Foster. Fcap. 8vo. price 3s. 6 d. cloth; 4s. Qd. cloth elegant, 
gilt edges. 

"A beautiful narrative, showing how bad habits may be eradicated, and evil tempers 
subdued." British Mother's Journal. 

BY W. H. C. KINGSTON, 

Our Soldiers; 

Or, Anecdotes of the Campaigns and Gallant Deeds of the British 
Army during the reign of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. By W. H. G. 
KINGSTON. With Frontispiece from a Painting in the Victoria Cross 
Gallery. Second Edition. Fcp. 8vo. price 3s. cloth; 3s. f>d. gilt edges. 

Our Sailors; 

Or, Anecdotes of the Engagements and Gallant Deeds of the British 
Navy during the reign of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. With Frontis- 
piece. Second Edition. Price 3s. cloth; 3s. Gd. gilt edges. 
" These volumes abundantly prove that both our officers and men in the Army and Navy, 
have been found as ready as ever to dare, and to do as was dared and done of yore." 



W. H. C. KINGSTON'S BOOKS FOR BOYS- 
With Illustrations. Fcap. 8vo. price 5s. each, cloth. 

True Blue; 

Or, the Life and Adventures of a British Seaman of the Old School. 

" There is about all Mr. Kingston's tales a spirit of hopefulness, honesty, and cheery 
pood principle, which makes them most wholesome, as well as most interesting reading." 
Era. 

"With the exception of Capt. Marryat, we know of no English author who will compare 
with Mr. Kingston as a writer of books of nautical adventure." Illustrated News. 

Will Weatherhelm ; 

Or, the Yarn of an Old Sailor about his Early Life and Adventures. 

Fred Markham in Russia; 

Or, the Boy Travellers in the Land of the Czar. 

Salt Water ; 

Or Neil D'Arcy's Sea Life and Adventures. 

Mark Seaworth; 

A Tale of the Indian Ocean. Second Edition. 

Peter the Whaler ; 

His early Life and Adventures in the Arctic Regions. Third Edition. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 19 



Distant Homes; 



Or, the Graham Family in New Zealand. By Mrs. I. E. AYLMER. 

With Illustrations. Price 3s. Gd. cloth ; 4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
" English children will be delighted with the history of tlie Graham Family, and be 
enabled to form pleasant and truthful conceptions of the ' Distant Humes' inhabited by 
their kindred." Athenaeum. 

The Adventures and Experiences of Biddy Dork- 

ING and of the FAT FROG. Edited by MRS. S. C. HALL. Illustrated 
by H. Weir. 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
" Most amusingly and wittily told." Morning Herald, 

Historical Acting Charades ; 

Or, Amusements for Winter Evenings, by the author of " Cat and 
Dog," etc. New Edition. Fcap. 8vo., price 3s. Gd. cloth gilt edges. 
"A rare book for Christmas parties, and of practical value." lUuttratedNewt. 

The Story of Jack and the Giants : 

With thirty-five Illustrations by RICHARD DOYLE. Beautifully printed. 

New and Cheaper Edition. Fcap. 4to. price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. 

coloured, extra cloth, gilt edges. 

" In Doyle's drawings we have wonderful conceptions, which will secure the book 
place amongst the treasures of collectors, as well as excite the imaginations of children." 
Illustrated Tii/tet. 



Granny's Wonderful Chair; 

And its Tales of Fairy Times. By FRANCES BROWNE. Illustrations 
by KENNY MEADOWS. 3s. Gd. cloth, 4s. Gd. coloured. 

" One of the happiest blendings of marvel and moral we have ever seen." Literary 
Gazette. 

The Early Dawn; 

Or, Stories to Think about Illustrated by H. WEIR. Second 
Edition. Price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

Angelo ; 

Or, the Pine Forest among the Alps. By GERALDINE E. JEWSBPRY, 
author of " The Adopted Child," etc. Illustrations by J. AUSOLON. 
Second Edition. Price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
" As pretty a child's story as one might look for on a winter's day." Examiner. 

Tales of Magic and Meaning. 

Written and Illustrated by ALFRED CROWQUILL. 4to. ; price 3s. Gd, 

cloth; 4s. Gd. coloured. 

" Cleverly written, abounding In frolic and pathos, and Inculcates to pure a moral, that 
we must pronounce him a very fortunate little fellow, who catchea these ' Tales of Magic,' 
as a windfall from ' The Christmas Tree'." Athenaeum. 



20 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS. 

Peter Parley's Fagots for the Fire Side; 

Or, Tales of Fact and Fancy. Twelve Illustrations. New Edition. 

Fcap. 8vo.; 3s. (id., cloth; 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 
" A new book by Peter Parley is a pleasant greeting for all boys and girls, wherever the 
English language is spoken and read. He has a happy method of conveying information, 
while seeming to address himself to the imagination." The Critic, 

Letters from Sarawak, 

Addressed to a Child ; embracing an Account of the Manners, Cus- 
toms, and Religion of the Inhabitants of Borneo, with Incidents of 
Missionary Life among the Natives. By Mrs. M'DOUGALL. Fourth 
Thousand, with Illustrations. 3*. Gd. cloth. 
" All is new, interesting, and admirably told." Church and State Gazette. 

Kate and Kosalind ; 

Or, Early Experiences. By the author of " Quicksands on Foreign 
Shores," etc. Fcap. 8vo, 3s. Gd. cloth ; 4s. gilt edges. 

" A book of unusual merit. The story is exceedingly well told, and the characters are 
drawn with a freedom and boldness seldom met with." Church of England Quarterly. 

" The Irish scenes are of an excellence that has not been surpassed since the best days 
of Miss Edgeworth." Fraser's Magazine. 

Clarissa Donnelly; 

Or, The History of an Adopted Child. By GERALDINE E. 
JETVSBURY. With an Illustration by JOHN ABSOLON. Fcap. 8vo, 
3s. 6rf. cloth; 4s. gilt edges. 

"With wonderful power, only to be matched by as admirable a simplicity, Miss Jewsbury 
has narrated the history of a child. For nobility of purpose, for simple, nervous writing, 
and for artistic construction, it is one of the most valuable works of the day." Lady's 
Companion. 

The Discontented Children ; 

And How they were Cured. By M. and E. KIRBY. Illustrated 
by H. K. BROWNE (Phiz.). Third edition, price 2s. Gd. cloth; 
3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" We know no better method of banishing 'discontent ' from school-room and nursery 
than by introducing this wise and clever story to their inmates." Art Journal. 

The Talking Bird; 

Or, the Little Girl who knew what was going to happen. By M. and 
E. KIRBY. With Illustrations by H. K. BROWNE. Second Edition. 
Price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

Julia Maitland; 

Or, Pride goes before a Fall. By M. and E. KIRBY. Illustrated by 
ABSOLON. Price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" It is nearly such a story as Hiss Edgeworth might liave written on the same theme." 
The Press. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 21 

COMICAL PICTURE BOOKS. 

Each with Sixteen large Coloured Plates, price 2s. Qd., in fancy boards, 
or mounted on cloth, Is. extra. 

Picture Fables. 

Written and Illustrated by ALFRED CROWQUILL. 

The Careless Chicken; 

By the BARON KRAKEMSIDES. By ALFRED CROWQUILL. 

Funny Leaves for the Younger Branches. 

By the BARON KRAKEMSIDES, of Burstenoudelafen Castle. Illustrated 
by ALFRED CROWQCILL. 

Laugh and Grow Wise; 

By the Senior Owl of Ivy Hall. With Sixteen large coloured 
Plates. Price 2s. 6<f. fancy boards; or 3s. 6rf. mounted on cloth. 



The Remarkable History of the House that Jack 

Built. Splendidly Illustrated and magnificently Illuminated by THE 
SON OF A GENIUS. Price 2s. infancy cover. 
" Magnificent in suggestion, and most comical in expression ! "Athenaum. 

A Peep at the Pixies ; 

Or, Legends of the West. By Mrs. BRAY. Author of " Life of 
Stothard," "Trelawny," etc. With Illustrations by Phiz. Super- 
royal 16mo, price 3s. 6d cloth; 4s. 6d. coloured, gilt edges. 



iur imLuie, iinu iivr retu ueiigm in iiury lore, nave given a iresimess 10 me lime volume 
we did not expect. The notes at the end contain matter of interest for all who feel a 
desire to know the origin of such tales and legends." Art Journal. 

A BOOK FOR EVERY CHILD. 

The Favourite Picture Book; 

A Gallery of Delights, designed for the Amusement and Instruction of 
the Young. With several Hundred Illustrations from Drawings by 
J. ABSOLON, H. K. BROWNE (Phiz), J. GILBERT, T. LANDSEEU, 
J. LEECH, J. S. PHODT, H. WEIR, etc. New I^dition. Royal 4to., 
bound in a new and Elegant Cover, price 3s. 6 d. plain ; 7s. 6t/. coloured; 
10s. Gd. mounted on cloth and coloured. 

Sunday Evenings with Sophia ; 

Or, Little Talks on Great Subjects. A Book for Girls. By LEONORA 
G. BELL. Frontispiece by J. ABSOLON. Fcap. 8vo, price 2. 6</. doth. 



22 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 

Blind Man's Holiday ; 

Or Short Tales for the Nursery. By the Author of " Mia and Charlie." 
Illustrated by ABSOLON. 3s. Gd. cloth; 4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

NEW AND BEAUTIFUL LIBRARY EDITION. 

The Vicar of Wakefield; 

A Tale. By OLIVER GOLDSMITH. Printed by Whittingham. With 
Eight Illustrations by J. ABSOLON. Square fcap. 8vo, price 5s., cloth; 
7s. half-bound morocco, Roxburghe style; 10s. Gd. antique morocco. 

Mr. Absolon's graphic sketches add greatly to the interest of the volume : altogether, 
it is as pretty an edition of the ' Vicar ' as we have seen. Mrs. Primrose herself would 
consider it ' well dressed.' " Art Journal. 

" A delightful edition of one of the most delightful of works : the fine old type and thick 
paper make this volume attractive to any lover of books." Edinburgh Guardian. 

The Wonders of Home, in Eleven Stories. 

By GRANDFATHER GREY. With Illustrations. Third and Cheaper 
Edition. Eoyal 16mo., 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" The idea is excellent, and its execution equally commendable. The subjects are well 
selected, and are very happily told in a light yet sensible manner." Weekly News. 

Cat and Dog; 

Or, Memoirs of Puss and the Captain. Illustrated by WEIR. Eighth 
Edition. Super-royal 16mo, 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" The author of this amusing little tale is, evidently, a keen observer of nature. The 
illustrations are well executed ; and the moral, which points the tale, is conveyed in the 
most attractive form." Britannia. 

The Doll and Her Friends ; 

Or, Memoirs of the Lady Seraphina. By the Author of " Cat and 
Dog." Third Edition. With Four Illustrations by H. K. BROWNE 
(Phiz). 2s. Gd., cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

Tales from Catland; 

Dedicated to the Young Kittens of England. By an OLD TABBY. 
Illustrated by H. WEIR. Fourth Edition. Small 4to, 2s. 6<f. plain; 
3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" The combination of quiet humour and sound sense has made this one of thepleasantest 
little books of the season." Lady's Newspaper. 

Scenes of- Animal Life and Character. 

From Nature and Eecollection. In Twenty Plates. By J. B. 4to, 
price 2s., plain; 2s. Gd., coloured, fancy boards. 

" Truer, heartier, more playful, or more enjoyable sketches of animal life could 
scarcely be found anywhere." Spectator. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 23 

WORKS BY THE LATE MRS- R- LEE- 

Anecdotes of the Habits and Instincts of Animals. 

Third Edition. With Illustrations by HARBISON WEIR. Fcap. 8ro, 
3*. &d. cloth ; 4s. gilt edges. 

Anecdotes of the Habits and Instincts of Birds, 

REPTILES, and FISHES. With Illustrations by HARRISON WEIR. 

Second Edition. Fcap. 8vo, 3s. 6d. cloth ; 4s. gilt edges. 
" Amusing, Instructive, and ably written." Literary Gazette. 

"Mrs. Lee's authorities to uanie only one, Professor Owen are, for the most part 
fi r t-rate .' A'Jiencnun. 



Twelve Stories of the Sayings and Doings of 

ANIMALS. With Illustrations by J. W. ARCHER. Third Edition. 
Super- royal IGmo, 2s. 6d. cloth; 3s. 6<f. coloured, gilt edges. 

Familiar Natural History. 

With Forty-two Illustrations from Original Drawings by HARRISON 
WEIR. Super-royal 16mo, 3s. 6d. cloth; 5*. coloured gilt edges. 
%* May be had in Two Volumes, 2s. each plain ; 2s. 6d. Coloured, 
Entitled " British Animals and Birds." " Foreign Animals and Birds." 

Playing at Settlers; 

Or, the Fagot House. Illustrated by GILBERT. Second Edition. 
Price 2s. 6rf. cloth; 3s. 6<i coloured, gilt edges. 

Adventures in Australia; 

Or, the Wanderings of Captain Spencer in the Bush and the Wilds. 
Second Edition. Illustrated by PROUT. Fcap. 8vo., 3s. Gd cloth; 4s. 

gilt edges. 

The African Wanderers; 

Or, the Adventures of Carlos and Antonio; embracing interesting 
Descriptions of the Manners and Customs of the Western Tribes, and 
the Natural Productions of the Country. Fourth Edition. With Eight 
Engravings. Fcap. 8vo, 3s. 6rf. cloth; 4s. gilt edges. 

" For fascinating adventure, and rapid succession of incident, the volume u equal to any 
relation of travel we ever read." Britannia. 

ELEGANT GIFT FOR A LADY. 

Trees, Plants, and Flowers; 

Their Beauties, Uses and Influences. By Mrs. R. LEE. With beau- 
tiful coloured Illustrations by J. ANDREWS. 8vo, price 10*. 6t/., cloth 
elegant, gilt edges. 

" The volume is at once useful as a botanical work, and exquisite as the ornament of a 
boudoir table." Britannia. " As full of interest aa of beauty." Art Journal. 



NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 



WORKS BY THE AUTHOR OF MAMMA'S BIBLE STORIES. 

Fanny and her Mamma ; 

Or, Easy Lessons for Children. In which it is attempted to bring Scrip- 
tural Principles into daily practice. Illustrated by J. GILBERT. Third 
Edition. 16mo, 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 
"A little book in beautiful large clear type, to suit the capacity of infant readers, which 
we can with pleasure recommend." Christian Ladies' Magazine. 

Short and Simple Prayers, 

For the Use of Young Children. With Hymns. Sixth Edition. 
Square 1 6mo, Is. cloth. 




Mamma's Bible Stories, 

For her Little Boys and Girls, adapted to the capacities of very young 
Children. Twelfth Edition, with Twelve Engravings. 2s. Gd. cloth; 
3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

A Sequel to Mamma's Bible Stories. 

Sixth Edition. Twelve Illustrations. 2s. Gd. cloth, 3s. Gd. coloured. 



ure Histories for Little Children. 



Script 

With Sixteen Illustrations, by JOHN GILBERT. Super-royal 16mo., 
price 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

CONTENTS. The History of Joseph History of Moses History of our 
Saviour The Miracles of Christ. 

Sold separately : Gd. each, plain ; Is. coloured. 



The Family Bible Newly Opened ; 

With Uncle Goodwin's account of it. By JEFFERTS TAYLOR- 
Frontispiece by J. GILBERT. Fcap. 8vo, 3s. Gd. cloth. 

"A very good account of the Sacred Writings, adapted to the tastes, feelings, and intel- 
ligence of young people." Educational Times. 



Good in Everything; 



Or, The Early History of Gilbert Harland. By MRS. BARWELL, 

Author of " Little Lessons for Little Learners," etc. Second Edition. 

Illustrations by GILBERT. 2s. Gd. cloth; 3s. fid., coloured, gilt edges. 

" The moral of this exquisite little tale will do more good than a thousand set tasks 

abounding with dry and uninteresting truisms." Bell's Messenger. 



PUBLISHED BY GRIFFITH AND FARRAN. 25 

THE FAVOURITE LIBRARY. 

A Series of Works for the Young; each Volume with an Illustration 
by a well-known Artist. Price 1*. cloth. 

1. THE ESKDALE HERD BOY. By LADY STODDABT. 

2. MRS. LEICESTER'S SCHOOL. By CHARLES and MABY LAMB. 

3. THE HISTORY OF THE ROBINS. By MRS. TRIMMER. 

4. MEMOIR OF BOB, THE SPOTTED TERRIER. 

5. KEEPER'S TRAVELS IN SEARCH OF HIS MASTER. 

6. THE SCOTTISH ORPHANS. By LADY STODDABT. 

7. NEVER WRONG; or, THE YOUNG DISPUTANT; and "IT 

WAS ONLY IN FUN." 

8. THE LIFE AND PERAMBULATIONS OF A MOUSE. 

9. EASY INTRODUCTION TO THE KNOWLEDGE OF 

NATURE. By MBS. TRIMMER. 

10. RIGHT AND WRONG. By the Author of " ALWAYS HAPPY." 

11. HARRY'S HOLIDAY. By JEFFERYS TAYLOR. 

12. SHORT POEMS AND HYMNS FOR CHILDREN. 

The above may be had Two Volumes bound in One, at Two Shillings cloth. 

Glimpses of Nature ; 

And Objects of Interest described during a Visit to the Isle of Wight. 
Designed to assist and encourage Young Persons in forming habits of 
observation. By Mrs. LOUDOJT. Second Edition, enlarged. With 
Forty-one Illustrations. 3s. 6d cloth. 

" We could not recommend a more valuable little volume. It is full of information, con- 
veyed in the most agreeable manner." Literary Gazette. 

Tales of School Life. 

By AGNES LOCDON. With Illustrations by JOHN ABSOI.ON. Second 
Edition. Royal 16mo, 2*. 6< plain; 3.6<f. coloured, gilt edges. 



ese reminiscences of school days will be recognised as truthful pictures of erery-day 
ence. The style is colloquial and pleasant, and therefore well suited to tboM lor 



"Tlv 
occurrei 
whose perusal it is intended." 



Kit Bam, the British Sinbad ; 

Or, the Yarns of an Old Mariner. By MARY COWDEN CLARKE, illus- 
trated by GEORGE CHUIKSIIANK. Fcap. 8vo, price 35. f>d. cloth; 
4s. gilt edges. . 



26 NEW AND INTERESTING WORKS 



The Day of a Baby Boy ; 

A Story for a Young Child. By E. BERGER. With Illustrations by 
JOHN ABSOLON. Third Edition. Super-royal 16mo, price 2s. 6oL 
cloth ; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

" A sweet little book for the nursery." Christian Times. 

Visits to Beech wood Farm ; 

Or, Country Pleasures. By CATHERINE M. A. COUPER. Illustrations 
by ABSOLON. Small 4*o, 3s. Gd., plain ; 4s. 6d. coloured ; gilt edges. 

Stories of Julian and his Playfellows. 

Written by His MAMMA. With Four Illustrations by JOHN ABSOLON. 
Second Edition. Small 4to., 2s. Gd., plain; 3s. fjd., coloured, gilt edges. 

The Nine Lives of a Cat ; 

A Tale of Wonder. Written and Illustrated by C. II. BENNETT. 
Twenty-four Engravings, price 2s. cloth; 2s. Gd. coloured. 

" Rich in the quaint humour and fancy that a man of genius knows how to spare for the 
enlivenment of children." Examiner. 

Maud Summers the Sightless : 

A Narrative for the Young. Illustrated by ABSOLON. 3s. Gd. cloth ; 
4s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

London Cries and Public Edifices 

Illustrated in Twenty-four Engravings by LUKE LIMNER; with descrip- 
tive Letter- press. Square 12mo, 2s. Gd. plain; 5s. coloured. 

The Silver Swan; 

A Fairy Tale. By MADAME DE CHATELAIN. Illustrated by JOHN 
LEECH. Small 4to, 2s. Gd. cloth ; 3s. Gd. coloured, gilt edges. 

Always Happy; 

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PARSING SIMPLIFIED: An Introduction and Companion to all 
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WRITING, gradually advancing from the Simple Stroke to a superior 
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