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By elisee reclus 


By A. H. KEANE, B.A. 





J. S. VIRTUE &: CO., Li.AriTED, 294, CITY ROAD 

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The Oceanic HEjnspHEEE 1—39 

Extent and Fonnation of the Oceanic Basins, p. 1. The Antarctic Lands, p. 4. 
Oceanic Exploration, p. o. Cook's Voyages, p. 10. Exploration of the Antarctic 
Waters, p. 12. Bathymetric Researches, p. 16. Atmospheric Currents, p. 20. 
Marine Currents, p. 23. Drift Ice, Icebergs, and Floes, p. 25. Volcanic Agencies, 
p. 2S. Coralline Formations, Atolls, p. 30. Oceanic Flora, p. 34. Inhabitants 
of the Oceanic Regions, p. 37. 

II. The Mascaeenhas — Reiwion, MATmiTrtrs, Rodeigites 40 — 03 

Flora and Fauna, p. 41. .Inhabitants, p. 42. Mauritius, p. 43. Reunion, p. 46. 
Rodrigues, p. 52. The Keeling Islands, p. o4. Christmas, Amsterdam, and St. 
Paul, p. 56. The Austral Islands, p. 59. Marion, Prince Edward, the Crozets, 
and Kerguelen, p 60. Macdonald and Heard, p. 63. 

III. Indonesia (The Eastern Aechipelaoo) 64 — 242 

Oeneral Survey, p. 64. Historic Retrospect, p. 67. Progress of Exploration, p. 69. 
Climate, p. 70. Flora, p. 71. Fauna, p. 73. Inhabitants, p. 76. Sumatra and 
Neighbouring Islands, p. 79. Phy.sical Features of Sumatra, p. 80. Krakatau, 
p. 87. Rivers of Sumatra, p. 90. The "West and East Sumatran Islands, p. 92. 
Flora and Fauna, p. 94. Inhabitants, p. 95. The Battas, p. 90. Tlie Menangkabaoa 
and other Sumatran Malays, p. 101. The Nias and Mentawey Isl.ands, p. 103. 
Topography of Sumatra, p. 106. Administration, p. 115. Sunda Islands between 
Sumatra and Borneo, p. 115. Bangka, p. 117. BiUiton, p. 119. Borneo, p. 120. 
Exploration, Political Divisions, p. 121. Physical Features, p. 123. Rivers, 
p. 126." Climate, p. 130. Flora, p. 131. Fauna, Inhabitants, p. 132. Dutch 
Borneo, p 137. Brunei and British Borneo, p. 142. Labuan, Sufaw.ak, p. 144. 
North Borneo, p. 146. Java and Madura, p. 149 Volcanoes, p. 150. Rivers, 
p. 162. Climate, Flora, Fauna, p. 164-5. Inhabitants, p. 166. Topography, p. 182. 
Administration, p. 193. Bali, p. 196. Lombok, p. 201. iSambawa, p. 203. 
Flores, Solor, Allor, p. 206. Sumba, p. 208. Timor and Rotti, p 209. Serwatty, 
p. 215. Tenlmber and Kci, p. 216. Celebes and Adjacent Lslands, p. 219. 
Chmate. Flora, F.auna, p 224, Inhabitants, p. 224. The Southern Moluccas: 
Burn, Coram Amboyna, Banda, p. 229. The Northern Moluccas : Obi, Bat jan, 
Tidor, Temate, Halmahera, Morotai, p. 235. 

IV. The Philippines and Strnj 243—273 

Climate, Flora, Fauna, p. 252. Inhabitants, p. 253. Topography, p 261. 
Administration, p. 270. 

V. Micronesia 274 — 292 

The Mariana (Ladronc) Islands, p. 274. Pelew (Palaos), p. 277. The Caroline 
Islands, p. 280. 



CHAP. f-ion 

VI. New Guinea and Adjacent Islands (Papuasia) 293 — 317 

Progress of Discovery, p. 293. Physical Features, p. 297. Rivers and Islands, 
p. 300. Climate, Flora, Fauna, p. 301. Inhabitants, p. 303. Topography, p. 306. 
British New Guinea, p. 311. German Possessions in New Guinea, p. 315. 

Melanesia 318 — 351 

Admiralty Islands, Bismarck Archipelago, Solomon Islands, p. 318. Physical 
Features, p. 319. Climate, Flora, Fauna, p. 323. Inhabitants, p. 324. Santa 
Cruz and the New Hebrides, p. 330. Inhabitants, p. 333. New Caledonia and the 
Loyalty Islands, p. 337. Climate, Flora, Fauna, p. 341. Inhabitants, p. 343. 
Topography, p. 347. 

VIII. Atjstkalia and Tasmania 352 — 420 

General Sirrvey, p. 352. Progress of Discovery, p. 353. Physical Features, 
p. 358. Rivers and Lakes, p. 365. Climate, p. 368. Flora, p. 371. Fauna, p. 374. 
Inhabitants, p. 375. Economic Condition, p. 387. Western Australia, p. 395. 
South Australia, p. 398. Queensland, p 403. New South Wales, p. 407. 
Victoria, p. 414. Tasmania, p. 418. 

IX. New Zealand and Neiohboueinq Islands 421 — 456 

Physical Features of South Island, p. 424. Physical Features of North Island, 
p. 430. Climate, p. 437. Flora, p. 438. Fauna, p. 439. Inhabitants, p. 440. 
Topography, p. 448. 

X. The Fiji Islands 457—465 

General Survey, p. 457. Climate, Flora, Faima, p. 459. Inhabitants, p. 460. 
Topography and Administration, p. 464. 

XL Equatoeial Polynesia 466 — 488 

General Survey, p. 466. Climate, Flora, Faima, p. 473. Inhabitants, p. 474. 
Tonga, p. 483. Samoa, p. 483. Tahiti, p. 485. Tuamotu, the Marquesas, p. 487. 

XII. Hawad (The Sandwich Islands) • . 489—497 

General Sm-vey, p- 489. Mauna-Loa, p. 490. Maui, p. 492. Flora, Fauna, 
p. 494-5. Inhabitants, p. 495. Topography, p. 497. 

Appendix • 498 

Index 505 



Equatorial Africa ...... 1 

Sunda Strait 184 

Australia, Tasmania, and New Zealand . . 352 


Sydney and Environs 408 

New Zealand and the Smaller Polynesian 

Groups ....... 456 


Group of Natives, North Queensland Frontispiece 

View taken at Tasman Peninsula Tofacepmje 8 

Port Moresby, South Coast of New Guinea 

Louis-Philippe Land, Antarctic Ocean 

Port Louis — Statue of Boui'donnais 

Piton D'Enchein, Reunion 

Saint-Denis, Reunion .... 

Island of St. Paul — View taken from the 


Dayak DweUings on the Rejang, West Borneo 
Palombang- — View taken near the Kraton in 

the Sacred Grove ..... 

Dayak Women, Borneo ..... 

The Bromo Volcano, Dasar District, Java 
Street View in Bata\-ia ..... 

Village of Tjimatjan, near Tjanjui', Java 

View taken from the Genting Bridge, Surabaya 1 9'i 

General View of Mcnado .... 22S 

Amboyna ....... 232 

Banda-Niera and Great Banda . 234 

General View of Mount Mayon . . . 24G 
Pueblo of Civilised Natives, Manilla District . 252 
Port of Manilla — General View 
Village of Saypan— Mariana Islands 



Group of Koyari Chiefs, South-East New 
Guinea . . . .To -face page 

Tambu and Group of Santa-Ana Natives, 
Solomon Archipelago 

General View of Noumea, taken from the Ar 
tHlery Barracks .... 

View taken in the Blue Mountains, Australia 

View taken at Middle - Harbom', Sydney 

Victoria Scenery — Forest near Eemshawe, 
North-East of Melbourne 

General View of Sandhurst (Bendigo), Vic- 
toria ...... 

General View of Hobart, Tasmania . 

General View of Launceston, Tasmania . 

Sources of the Waimakariri, New Zealand 

The Pink Terrace of Roto-Mahana before the 
Eniptionof 1886 .... 

Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu 

General View of Lo^^J^a, Fiji Archipelago 

Landscape in the Tuamotu Archipelago . 

View taken at Moorea, imder Mount Rutui, 

View of Waimca, Kauai Island, Hawaii , 










The Great Oceanio Hemisphere (Western 


The Great Oceanic Hemisphere (Eastern 

Explorations of the Paciiii 
Fii-st Circumnavigation of the Globe from 

West to East and East to West 
Dates of the Cliief Discoveries in Oceania 
Explorations in the South Polar Waters 
Northern Promontory of the Antarctii 

Mainland ..... 

Depths of the Austral Seas 

Ice Field traced by Dumont D'UrviUe 

Volcanoes of the Pacific 

Zone of the Coralline I.slands 

Mauritius ...... 

Port Louis ..... 

The Grand Brule .... 

The Three Cirques .... 

The Maeina of St. Denis 

St. Pierre 

Rodiigues ..... 

Keeling Islands .... 

Amsterdam . : . . . 

St. Paul 

Kerguelen ..... 

Indonesian Submarine Plateau . 
Comparative Areas of Holland and the 

Dutch East Indies .... 
Parting Line of the Indonesian Faimas 
Inhabitants of Indonesia . 
PuLO Brass Liohthouse, Sumatka . 
The Merapi Volcanic Range 
Krakatau and Neighboiu-ing Islets befon 

the Eruption .... 
Krakatau and Neighbouring Islets after 

the Eruption . 
Range of Dispersion of the Ivrakatau Ashes 
Steamek boene on the Keakatau Wave 


Alluvial Plains of the Musi Basin 

A Stxmatean Jungle — View taken in the 

State of Deli 
Okano Batta .... 
Orang Atjeh .... 
Lake Toba and the Batta Country 
Inhabitants of Simiatra 
Kota-Raja and Olch-leh . 
Padang and Environments 
Highlands East of Padang 
DeU . 

Riouw Archipelago 
Barito Delta 

Scene in Bokneo, neas Sarawak 

Navigable Streams and Chief Routes of 

Explorers in Borneo .... 

















































Dayak Types, Borneo . 
Banjermassin ..... 

On the RrvEK Amandit, Dutch Bokneo 
Lower Course of the Mahakkam 
Brunei ...... 

Sarawak ...... 

Sandakan. ..... 

Chief Volcanoes in Java . 

Gede Volcano ..... 

Javanese Landscape — Mount Gede . 
Dieng ...... 

Gunong Sewu ..... 

South- West Slopes of Kelut 

Tengger and Semeru 

Lemongan ..... 

Nusa Kembangan . 

Inhabitants of Java .... 

Empeeoe and Empeess of Sukakarta 
Comparative Increase of Poijulation in Java 

and Holland ..... 
Coffee Plantation, Java 
Zones of Wet and Dry Rice Fields and 

Coffee Plantations on Mount Sivmbing 
Teak Forests, Selnarang and Siu'abaya 
Railways in Java .... 

Steamship Lines in Indonesia . 
Batavia in 1628 .... 

Batavia and Port of Tanjong Priok . 
Semarang. ..... 

Magelang and Bmni-Budhur . 
Merapi and Jokjokarta . 


Surabaya and Madura Strait . 
Administrative Divisions of Java 



















Palace of the Sultan of Bulelano, Bali 

Lombok Strait .... 

Central Part, of Sumbawa 

Larantuka Strait 

Timor and Neighbouring Islands 

View in a Foeest near Kupang, Timoe 

Kupang .... 


Explored Regions of Celebes 

Saleyer .... 


The Tondano Cascade, Minahassa 

Macassar and South Region of Celebes 

Administrative Divisions of Celebes 

Burn ..... 

Port of Amboyna 

KUwaru ..... 

Banda Group ..... 
Empires of Temate and Tidor . 
Teniate, Tidor, and Dadinga Istlmius 
View taken at Teenate . . 
Den.sity of the Population in Dutch 

Indonesia ..... 
PoUtical Divisions of Indonesia 



The thi-ee Issthnmses of Indunesia and the 






Southern Part of Lui!on .... 




Central Part of Luzon .... 




Lake Bombon ...... 




Earthquake of 1880 .... 




Geoup of Neqeitoes .... 




Chief Inhabitants of the Philippines 




lFuo.iO Indian 








EnvTTons of Manilla .... 




Samar and Leyte 




Do -Do and Strait of Gnimaras 




Sulu Archipelago 




Density of Population of the Philippines . 




Provincial Division.s of the Philippines . 




Mariana jVrchipelago .... 




Pelew Islands . . ... 




Geneeal View of UAiAU 




Ruk Islands 








Ponapo . ■ . 








Marshall Archipelago .... 




Chief Explorations on the Coasts and in the 


Interior of New Guinea 


1 88. 


Lacustkine Village of Tupuselei, Motu 


Tereitoey, New Guinea 




Mountains of New Guinea 




MacCluer Inlet and Onin Peninsula 




Waigeu, Batanta, and Salwaty 








Port Moresby ...... 






New Guinea 




Astrolabe Bay 




White Bay 




San Cristobal 




Neu-Lauenburg (York) Island 




Vanikoro ....'.. 




New Hebrides 




Geoup of New Hebeibes Natives 




New Caledonia 




Native of Maee, Loyalty Isles . 




Native of Maee, Loyalty Isles . 




New Caledonian Man .... 




New Caledonian Woman 








Dwelling of a Native Chief, New 






Isle of Pines 




Comparative Areas of Australia and the 


British Isles 




Chief Routes of Australian Explorers 




MacDouall's Itineraries .... 




Australian Alps . . ... 




Bass Strait 




Torres Strait 




The Great Barrier Reef .... 




Isothermals of Alistralia .... 




Rainfall of East Australia 




Inhabitants and Languages of Australia 


about 1850 




Lalla Rookh, the Last Tasidinian 



Density of the Australian Population . 386 
Increase of the Australian Population . 387 
Encampment op Austealian Squattees . 389 
Gold Mines of South-East Australia . 390 
Australian Railways at the End of 1887 . 392 
Australian Colonies ..... 393 
King George Sound ..... 394 
Perth and its En\-irons . . . .396 

Adelaide 400 

Adelaide, Spencer and St. Vincent Gulfs . 401 
Port Darwin ...... 402 

Brisbane and Moreton Bay . . . 405 

Botany Bay 40S 

Sydney in 1802 409 

Newcastle . . . . .411 

Norfolk Island 413 

Melbouene, View in Boceke Steeet . 415 
Melbourne and Hobson's Bay . . .417 
Hobart and the Derwent River . . 420 

View taken at Antipodes Island . .423 
Tasman Glacier ..... 426 
Fiords of South- West New Zealand . 428 

Breaksea and Dusky Sounds . .429 

Cook Strait 431 

Lake Taupo 433 

Lake Tarawera ..... 435 
Tattooed Maoei Chief .... 442 
King's Country ..... 444 
Railways of New Zealand . . . .447 
A Sheep Pen, New Zealand .448 

Auckland ...... 449 

Kaipara 450 

Christchurch and Akaroa Peninsula 452 

Port Chalmers . . . . - 453 

Chatham Island ..... 464 

Pro^-inces of New Zealand . . 455 

Fiji Islands . . . . . .458 

The Royal Family, Fiji . . .461 
Suva and Lcvuka ..... 4G5 

Trend of the Polynesian Islands . . 467 
Volcanic Islands of Eastern Polynesia . 468 

Tonga-Tabu 460 

Samoa ....... 470 

Gambler Archipelago . . .471 

The Marquesas . . . . .472 

Easter Island 475 

Tattooed Native, Marquesas Islands . 476 

Samoan Women 477 

Religions of Oceania . . . .479 
Inhabitants of Oceania .... 480 
Equatorial Polynesia, by Tupaia . .481 
Movements of the Oceanic Populations . 482 

Apia 481 

Tahiti and Moorea ..... 485 

Papeete 486 

Nuka-Hiva 487 

Political Dirisions of Oceania . . . 488 
Hawaiian Islands ..... 490 

Craters of Mauna-Loa and Kilauea . 491 

, Lava Steeams of Kilauea . . 492 

Ceatee of Kilauea, Hawaii . . . 493 

Hawaii ....... 494 

Honolulu . . . .495 

General View of Honolulu . . . 497 



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OMPARED with the collective body of marine waters, the Atlantic 
Ocean may be regarded as a mere " Mediterranean," or Inland 
Sea. As the "boundless" expanse on which the Greek mariners 
first timidly ventured was found to be a " closed sea," or simple 
landlocked basin, according as seafarers gradually explored its 
contracted seaboard between Europe and Africa, in the same way the more for- 
midable Atlantic itself, only four centuries ago still held to be limitless, has in its 
turn proved to be a mere winding valley between the two halves of the con- 
tinental lands constituting the Old and the New Worlds. Northwards this deep 
trough is separated by Greenland and Iceland from the cavities of the polar 
waters ; east and west the shores of Europe and North America, as well as those 
of Africa and South America, roughly correspond in the contours and indentations 
of their coastline, which at the narrowest point, between Carabane and Cape 
St. Roque, are separated only by an interval of 1,800 miles. But southwards the 
Atlantic spreads out broadly, here merging in the greater oceanic basin which 
encompasses the whole periphery of the globe. 

Extent and Formation of the Oceanic Basin. 

Excluding the Atlantic with its lateral inlets and the island-studded and ice- 
obstructed Arctic waters encircled by the Asiatic and American seaboards, the 
VOL. xiv. n 


great oceanic depression covers about one half of the surface of the earth.* South 
of the three continental extremities — Cape Horn, Cape of Good Hope, and 
Tasmania-^the belt of waters stretches uninterrujDtcdly in a circuit of 15,000 to 
16,000 miles. Moreover, the marine depression extends far to the north beyond 
the equator, developing to the east of Africa the vast basin of the Indian Ocean, 
and east of Australia and A.sia the stUl more extensive basin of the Pacific Ocean. 
If the continental masses, taken collectively, be compared to a half crater, whose 
contour, beginning at the Cape of Good Hope and terminating at Cape Horn, 
comprises the Ethiopian highlands, the Himalayas, and the Andes, the " Great 

Fig. 1. — The Great Oceaxic Hemispheke (Western Section). 

Ocean," as Fleurieu calls the united Indian and Pacific waters, will be found to 
completely flood this immense semicircle. The total sweep of this semiciicle of inner 
shores exceeds 24,000 miles, that is to say, the length of the terrestrial circum- 
ference at the equator. Edward Suess has brought into full relief the striking 
contrast presented by the Atlantic and Pacific, the former presenting no lofty 
coast range round its periphery, while the latter washes with its abysmal waters 
the very foot of the encircling escarpments. But is this writer not mistaken in 

Total oceanic area, according to ICriimmel 
Great ocean, with Atlantic and Arctic Seas 
Area of dry lands 

148,000,000 square miles. 


comparing the formation of the Atlantic with that of the Indian Ocean, with its 
elevated coastHnes of Java and Smnatra, of the Arrakan highlands, the submerged 
chain of the Maldives and Laccadives, the Ghats, the Persian and Madagascar 
uplands ? 

The vast oceanic basin is by no means a boundless expanse destitute of reefs, 
islands, and insular groups. Like the Atlantic it has its upheaved lands, not only 
such as, lying in the vicinity of the continents, might be regarded as detached 
fragments of the African, Asiatic, and American mainlands, but also archipelagoes 
of all sizes strewn over the wide expanse of waters at great distances from the 

Fig. 2. — The Gke.\t Oce.isic Hemispheee (Eastern Sectiox). 

surrounding co;istliues. iSomc of the islands scattered over the oceanic hemi- 
sphere of the globe are even so extensive that they have been regarded either as 
the remains of a past or else the first corner-stones of a future continent. Mada- 
gascar, the Comoros, and the Seychelles have been treated by many naturalists as 
the surviving fragments of a vanished world, which from a tj-pical branch of its 
now dispersed fauna has received the name of " Lemuria." In the great Pacific 
Ocean farther east, thousands of islands, cone-shaped or disposed in circular groups, 
seem to form part either of a submerged continent or of a new world in process of 
formation. The insular region which stretches south-east of Indo-China from 



Sumatra to Tasmania, also constitutes, notwithstanding its present fragmentary 
character, a continental division somewhat analogous to Afiica and South America. 
The various divisions of the globe are disposed in twos along three parallel axes, 
an arrangement best seen in the symmetrical disposition of North and South 
America. But the same dual grouping may also be detected in the great divisions 
of the Old World. Here Europe, formerly separated from Asia by the Caspian 
and Aral Seas, and other lacustrine depressions, forms with Africa the western 
group. The eastern, still more irregular in its general disposition, comprises the 
vast Asiatic continent and all the innumerable islands which are crowded together 
in the south-eastern waters between the Indian and Pacific Oceans. These 
extensive lands are obviously a continent reduced to fragments, and forming an 
extension of Further India into the southern hemisphere. Hence, not without 
reason, some writers have suggested the expression " Insul-India " for the 
equatorial regions which form a southern continuation of Indo-China across the 
Great Ocean. The vast island of Australia, with continental dimensions, together 
with the surrounding lands, has similarly received the general designation of 
" Australasia," and this term itself has been extended by Wallace and others to 
the whole of the insular world sometimes known as Oceania. Australasia thus 
comprises the Eastern Archipelago, with the Philippines, Australia, and adjacent 
islands, New Guinea, New Zealand, and all the South Sea Islands (Melanesia, 
Micronesia, and Polynesia), and in this wide sense it is taken as the title of the 
present volume. 

The Antarctic Lands. 

Yet another continent probably exists in the immensity of the Southern Ocean. 
The antarctic polar region, still unexplored for a space of about 6,500,000 square 
miles, assuredly comprises vast stretches of dry land, which by many geographers 
have already been traced on the maps as forming a continuous mainland sweeping 
round the south polar circle. Thus to the "open sea" supposed to encompass 
the North Pole would correspond an ice-bound continent about the South Pole. 
But, however this be, the vast masses of ice-floes met by navigators venturing into 
the antarctic waters attest the existence of high land stretching southwards. 
Moreover, the sounding instruments have fished up fragments of granites, schists, 
sandstones, and limestones recently broken off ; while at certain isolated points 
explorers have really seen, or thought they have descried through the mists, the 
outlines of long, ice-covered southern ranges. 

Without including the antarctic lands lying beyond the sixtieth degree 
south latitude, all the islands and half-continental lands in the Indian and Pacific 
Oceans comprise a total superficial area far greater than that of Europe. Of the 
hundreds of scattered insular groups, some are altogether uninhabited, while others 
are very thinly peopled. Nevertheless, the collective population of Australasia 
exceeds that of South America, and its average increase is rapid, notwithstanding 
the depopulation of several oceanic archipelagoes. The total area of all the dry 
land has been estimated at about 4,600,000 square miles, with a probable popula- 


tion of forty-four millions, coucentratel chiefly iu llie Eastern Archipelago and 
the Philippines. 

Progress of Oceaxic Exploratiox. 

With the exceptiou of the islands more contiguous to Asia, all the regions of 
the oceanic hemisphere remained till the present century almost entirely severed 
from the economic and commercial life of the civilised world. But the rapid 
colonisation of Australia and Xew Zealand, the occupation of the Polynesian 
archipelagoes, the establishment of a regular system of steam navigation between 
the chief centres of trade in the Pacific and Indian Oceans have, so to say, 
annexed this half of the planet to the other half, of which West Europe occupied 
the central point. 

Thus the world, hitherto incomplete, has as it were been suddenly revealed in 
its entirety, and universal history, in the strict sense of the term, henceforth begins 
for all the races and peoples of the earth. Nothing is now wanting to the vast 
stage on which throbs the great heart of humanity, already awakening to self- 
consciousness and henceforth united, at least in all its material relations. This 
enlargement of the civilised world cannot fail to be attended by consequences of 
far-reaching importance. The earliest national cultures, which had been cradled 
in the great fluvial vallej-s of Egypt and Mesopotamia, were followed by the more 
comprehensive culture of the peoples dwelling round about the Mediterranean 
basin. Then came, with the discovery of the New World, the era of Atlantic 
civilisation, exceeding that of the Mediterranean " in the same ratio that the square 
of the axis of the inland exceeds that of the oceanic basin." And now the whole 
world becomes the theatre of busy life for the civilised peoples. Henceforth the 
earth knows no limits, for its centre is everywhere or anywhere on the planetar}' 
surface, and its circumference nowhere. 

At the same time, in the complexity of known and habitable lands, some more 
favoured regions stand out, which, thanks to the beautj' of their scenery, the 
mildness of their climate, or other physical advantages, have in a special manner 
attracted the stream of human migration. Amongst these privileged lands can any 
be named that excel certain Pacific islands in the marvellous harmony of their 
outlines, the charm of the encompassing waters, the softness of the atmosphere, 
the fecundit}' of the soil, the even course of their seasons, the rhythmical movement 
of all their natural phenomena ? The eminent naturalist. Bates, has hazarded the 
opinion that, if mankind has been able to attain a high degree of culture through 
its struggle with the inclemency of the cold regions, in the equatorial lands alone 
the perfect race of the future will enter on the complete fruition of its magnificent 

For ages Egyptians, Arabs, andPhojnicians were acquainted with the Erythraean 
Sea, that is, the Indian Ocean. Their ships had even already penetrated in the 
direction of the coastlands, whence came frankincense, ivory, and gold, when iu 
their turn the Greeks, during the Alexandrian expedition, also found the highway 
leading to those southern waters. At first following the coastline, and keejiing 


always within sight of land, they nevertheless advanced far towai'ds the east. But 
before the first century of the vulgar era, tradition makes no reference to the 
great discovery of the regularly alternating movement of the trade winds and 
monsoons, by means of which mariners were first enabled boldly to venture on the 
high seas, running fearlessly before the wind from the African and Arabian 
seaboard to that of the Indian peninsiila. There can, however, be little doubt that 
these alternating aerial currents were already well known to the Arab and 
Phoenician navigators and utilised by them in their distant expeditions to the far 
east. But the merit of the discovery was attributed to Hippalos, the Greco- 
Egyptian pilot, whose name was even given to the two regular easterly and 
westerly winds. 

During the Roman epoch the islands and the Asiatic peninsulas of the Indian 
Ocean were better known than twelve centuries later, that is, on the eve of Vasco 
de Gama's expedition. The Western traders were well acquainted with Taprobana 
(Ceylon), and the Golden Chersonese (Malay peninsula), as well as the island of 
"Barley," the present Java. Their commercial relations reached as far as the 
Moluccas, for the clove had already made its ai^pearance on the tables of wealthy 
Romans. During the night watch mariners beguiled the hours with narratives of 
marvellous adventures, in which the flights of fancy became intermingled with 
more or less truthful descriptions of j)eoples, animals, and plants actually seen by 
the relaters on their travels. From the seafarers of diverse nations, who traded 
in the service of Rome, these tales passed in a more or less modified form to the 
Arab mariners of mediaeval times, and from this source, with its germ of truth, 
were developed many of the marvellous stories embodied in the Thousand and One 

The modern era of exploration for the oceanic regions coincides with that of 
the New World. In 1498, Vasco de Gama, after rounding the Cape of Good 
Hope, crossed the Indian Ocean straight to Calicut on the Malabar coast. Two 
years afterwards Diego Dias, brother of the other Dias who had first doubled the 
same cape, discovered S. Lourenco (Madagascar), whQe others, pushing still 
eastwards, reached the shores of Further India. In 1509 Malacca had already 
become a centre of Portuguese dominion, and henceforth all the Asiatic vessels 
calling at that emporium were obliged to accept the services of a Portuguese 

The Eastern Archipelago, which had already been visited by the Italian, 
Bartema, was soon embraced by the commercial empire of Lisbon ; but once 
masters of the valuable Spice Islands, the Portuguese mariners seldom ventured 
into the unknown waters farther east. To another nation, represented, however, 
by the Portuguese, Magellan, fell the glory of first completing the circumnaviga- 
tion of the globe, across the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean. Following the 
western route round South America, instead of the eastern taken by Vasco de 
Gama, Magellan traversed in 1520 the strait that bears his name, and first of 
Europeans penetrated into the South Pacific, sailing in search of the easternmost 
Portuguese factories. By a strange accident his ships traversed an open space of 


110 less than ten thousand miles, touching only at two uninhabited islets to the 
east of the yet undiscovered Low Archipelago, thus avoiding all the innumerable 
clusters strewn over the South Seas. The first group met by them was that of the 
Ladrones, or Mariannas, in 1521, after which, continuing his westerly course, 
Magellan reached the Philippines, and perished in an encounter with the natives 
on the island of Mactan, a small member of that archipelago. The lands discovered 
by him for a long time justly bore the name of Magellania. 

Fig-. 3.— Explorations of the Pacific. 

Scale 1 : 200,000,000. 

The companions of the Portuguese navigator continued their voyage, at first 
towards Borneo, then to the Moluccas, beyond which, on the homeward journey 
across the Indian Ocean, the Basque, Sebastian el Cano, in command of the only 
surviving vessel, discovered an islet by him named San-Pablo, but at present 
known as Amsterdam. Of the two hundred and thirty-seven men who had 
started from Seville, eighteen only returned, amongst them Pigafetta, historian of 
the memorable voyage of circumnavigation. " I do not think," he wrote, "that 
anyone will in future undertake a similar journey." Nevertheless, within six 
months of Magellan's expedition, another Spanish squadron, commanded by 
Loyasa, also penetrated through Tierra del Fuego into the Southern Ocean, and 


on the long route to the Ladrones Archipelago met only a single island of insig- 
nificant size. One of the ships, driven b}' a storm to the coast of Mexico, was the 
first to circumnavigate South America. 

Many generations passed before the Pacific was traversed in the opjoosife 
direction, so as to achieve the circumnavigation of the globe in the reverse way, 
from west to east. Navigators had in vain attempted to beat up against the trade 
winds which set regularly in the Pacific, although their efforts were attended by 
numerous discoveries of islands and archipelagoes, such as New Goiinea, the 
Carolines, the Marshall, Pelew, and Bonin groups. But after struggling for 
weeks and months against the marine and aerial currents, the explorers one after 
the other confessed themselves baffled, and put back to the Philippines or the 
Moluccas. At last the Augustinian friar, Andres de Urdaneta, found, or rather 
guessed, the eastward route across the Pacific. Reasoning by analogy, he con- 
cluded that the atmospheric laws must be the same in the Atlantic and Pacific 
basins ; consequently, that the south-west winds of "West Europe must be balanced 
by currents setting in the same direction in the temperate latitudes comprised 
between Japan and California. The meteorological anticipation was completely 
justified in 1565, when Urdaneta himself, nearly half a century after Magellan's 
voyage, sailed from the Philippines and Ladrones northwards as far as the forty- 
third degree of latitude in the Japanese waters, then turning to the south-east, at 
last gained the Mexican port of Acapulco. The voyage lasted altogether one 
hundred and twenty-five days. 

Henceforth, regular communication was established across the Pacific between 
Mexico and the Philippines. The route was carefully determined by pilots, and 
for two himdred years was strictly followed by the Spanish galleons. After 
leaving Acapulco, skippers were able to sjjread sail and run before the wind 
without tacking all the way to the Philippines. But on the return voyage they 
first made for the Japanese waters about 35° north latitude, keeping under this 
parallel till within sight of the California coast, and then following the seaboard 
to the starting-point. So closely was this beaten track adhered to, that scarely 
any discoveries were made to the right or the left. Nevertheless, indications of 
land are figured on the Spanish charts in the region occupied by the Sandwich 

The very stillness of the atmosphere, combined with the infrequeucy of storms, 
maj' perhaps have been one of the causes of the long-prevailing ignorance 
regarding the oceanic lands of the northern hemisphere. The great ocean well 
deserves the name of " Pacific " given to it by Magellan. The expression " South 
Sea," applied in a more general way to all the waters comprised between Asia and 
America, was at first restricted to the regions lying to the south-west of Mexico 
and Central America. In this sense it was used by way of contrast with the 
" North Sea," whence the Spanish exi^lorcrs had penetrated southwards. The 
now forgotten term, " Sea of Our Lady of Loretto," was adopted by the Franciscan 
missionaries, in the belief that the vast ocean bathed lands which were all destined 
one day to be peopled only by Christian neophytes. 





Beyond the zone of navigation utilised by the Acapulco galleons, nearly all tlie 
cquatoiial archipelagoes of the South Sea were at least sighted by the Spanish 
mariners during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. In 1567 Mendana de 
Neyra saw the groups at present known by the name of the Ellice and Solomon 
Islands ; in 1595 Hurtado de Mendoza discovered the Marquesas ; in IGOG Queiroa 
sailed through the Low Archipelago, visited the New Hebrides, and skirted the 
Australian seaboard, which he claimed to have first observed, although his voyage 
to these shores had been anticipated by the Portuguese pilot Godinho de Eredia, 
and in 1531 even \>y the Provencal Guillaume le Testu.* Lastly, Torres, who had 
accompanied the Queiros expedition, successfully navigated the dangerous laby- 
rinth of reefs and islets separating Australia from New Guinea. His name has 
been justly given to the strait which, with rare boldness and seamanship, he 
traversed from sea to sea in the space of two months. 

But Spaniards and Portuguese had no longer the monopoly of these oceanic 
regions, which had been shared between them by the famous Bull of Alexander VI. 
The illustrious English seafarer, Francis Drake, repeated fifty-seven years later 
the exploit of Magellan, first circumnavigator of the globe, and after him the 
routes of the Pacific were further surveyed by Cavendish and some Dutch 
mariners. By the close of the sixteenth century Dutch traders had even already 
founded factories in Java, whence their power gradually spread from island to 
island, everywhere displacing that of the Portuguese. In their turn the Dutch 
sailors took up the work of discovery in the southern waters, Tasman especially 
enlarging our knowledge of the Austral lands. Thus were revealed to the 
western world the west coast of Australia as far as Torres Strait, Tasmania with 
its basalt headland, New Zealand and its active volcanoes. But such was at that 
time the intensity of international rivalries between the chief trading peoples, 
that the discoveries already made by the Spanish or Portuguese pioneers remained 
unknown to or overlooked by the Netherlandish explorers. Although Torres had 
actually demonstrated the existence of a passage separating Australia from New 
Guinea, Tasman maintained forty years later that both lands belonged to the 
same continent. 

The second half of the eighteenth century was the decisive epoch in the scientific 
exploration of the South Sea Islands. Henceforth exploring expeditions were no 
longer undertaken in the interests of a single nation, or of some powerful trading 
company, but rather for the benefit of the whole of the civilised world. At 
the same time the more accurate observations now made imparted far greater 
authority to the reports of the explorers themselves. The longitudes in the 
southern waters were for the first time determined by the method of lunar dis- 
tances by Wallis in 1766. Thenceforth the enormous errors of the early seafarers, 
with discrepancies of from one thousand to two thousand miles, became impossible, 
and mariners were no longer doomed to beat about for weeks and months together in 
search of large archipelagoes already reported by their predecessors. Owing to this 
uncertainty, numerous explorers had to abandon the attempt to sight the Solomon 

* Major. Juin-iia! of /!„• R.„j,(l Geui/riiphirn/ Surh-I,/, IST'i. 



group discovered by Mendana de Neyra. Its very existence was questioned, and 
the Spanish sailor's account was attributed to fantastic apparitions, clouds on the 
horizon simulating the outlines of reefs, coastlands, forests, or villages. On the 
other hand, other groups became decomposed, and the same island was sighted in 
apparently different places, thus receiving several names from successive observers. 
At last the application of astronomical processes put an end to this bewildering 
fluctuation in the oceanic insular regions. 

Cook's Voyages. 

The epoch of methodic exploration in the South Sea, begun bj- AVallis, may be 
said to have closed in 1827 with the discovery of the two great Fijian islands by 


Scale 1 : 450,000,000. 


Dumont d'Urville. During the intervening sixty years, rendered memorable by 
the voyages of Carteret, de Bougainville, Cook, Vancouver, and Laperouse, the 
geographical work of oceanic research was completed in all its main features. 
Thenceforth nothing remained and nothing still remains to be done, except to fix 
more accurately the position of the island groups, to trace their outlines more 
carefully, indicate all the reefs, survey the doubtful landmarks, and efface those 
that had been erroneously inserted on the official charts. 

Amongst the explorers of the last century, the first place belongs unquestion- 
ably to Cook. The year 1769, when the illustrious navigator began his net- 
work of researches in the Pacific, may be said to rank next to 1521, date of 
Magellan's voyage, as the chief turning-point in the history of oceanic discovery. 
Landing at Tahiti, Cook began his gigantic labours with his memorable observa- 



tions on the transit of Venus, thus determining a precise longitude in the centre 
of the Pacific. He then completely circumnavigated the two great islands of 
New Zealand, surveyed the east coast of Australia, and rediscovered Torres 

In his second voyage he explored more especially the Austral seas on both 
sides of the polar circle, but advancing in the opposite direction from that taken 

-Dates of the Chief Discotekies in Oceania. 



3 1567 

'' StrJ768 
CJ77-f T JSxJ C.//7S 




M. 1521. Magellan, Guafian, Philippines. 

Me. 1526. MeDezes, yew Guinea. 

S. 1528. A. de Saavedra, Carolines. 

S. 1529. A. de Saavcdra, ilarshall. 

G. 1531. Goillaume le Testu, Australia. 

V. 1543. Villalobos, Carolines, Ptlem. 

Md. 1567. Mendana, Ellice, 1-olomon, ^andicich. 

Md. 1595. Mendaoa, Marquesas, Sta. Cruz. 

Q. 1606. Queiros, Loto Islands. Fakao/o,Xew Bt 

T. 1606. Torres, Torres Straits. Louisiades. 

L. M. 1616 Lemaire, -Viun/u, yew Ireland. 

H. 1616. HarlOff, Endraehtsland. 

E. 1619. Edel, Edelsland. 

L. 1622. Leeawins, Leeuwinsland. 

N. 1627. Norts, Xuytsland. 

W. 1628. Witts, Wittaland. 

T. 1642. Tasman, Tasmania, Xew Zealand. 

T. 1643. Tasman, Tonga, Fiji, Xew Britain. 
T. 1644. Tasman, Tasmanland, Carpentaria. 
D. 1699. Dampier, Xew Guinea. 

B. 1765. Byion, Gilbert Island. 
Wa. 1767. Wallis, Tahiti. 

Ca. 1767. Carteret, Pitcairn, Carteret, low /; 
Bo, 1763. Bougainville, Samoa, Solomon. 

C. 1769. Cook. Austral IshnJs. 

C. 1770. Cook, Xew Zealand, Australia. 
C. 1773. Cook, Bervel/ Islands. 

C. 1774. Cook, Savage Island, Xew Caledonic 
La. 1787. Lap^roiise, Sawaii. 

Br. 1791. Broughton, ( halham Island. 
Ba. 1798. Bass, Bass's Strait. 
Ha. 1810. Hazelburg, Macquarie. 
Wk. 1811. Walker, Campbell. 

D. U. 1827. Dumont D'Urville, Fiji. 

by all previous circumnavigators. He was thus the first to make the circuit of 
the globe from west to east, according to the rotation round its axis. This event 
took place over two hundred and fifty years after Magellan's circumnavigation 
from east to west, following the regular course of the trade winds. 

Cook's third expedition was directed towards the northern waters, where 
he penetrated through the strait separating the two continents of Asia and 
America. He then rediscovered the Sandwich Islands, where he was first received 


as a god, but soon after murdered under circumstances that have never been 
satisfactorily explained. 

Cook's researches had the effect of once for all exploding the theoretic fancy 
that on the surface of the globe the dry land should occupy exactly the same space 
as the oceanic basins. Since the time of Hipparchus the most eminent geo- 
graphers accepted as an established dogma the perfect equilibrium between land 
and water ; and it was under the influence of this idea that Ptolemy had traced 
across the southern part of the Indian Ocean a continental coastline connecting 
Africa with India. This shadowy seaboard, continually receding from the eager 
eve of navio-ators, was successively identified by them with New Guinea, New 
Holland, and New Zealand; and later, every island sighted in more southern 
latitudes was supposed to be some headland of the long-sought-for continent. 

Cook, who himself firmly believed in the existence of this Austral world, jjlaced 
its shores far to the south of the waters reached by his predecessors ; but in any 
case we now know that the Antarctic continent, or insular group, must be of 
slight extent compared with the boundless waste of circumpolar waters. When at 
last convinced of the absence of continental lauds in the regions traversed by 
Cook, his companion Forster advanced the hypothesis that nature had readjusted the 
etiuilibrium between the two hemispheres of the planetory orb by depositing on 
the bed of the Antarctic Ocean rocky masses of greater density than elsewhere. 


Although in the pride of his immense triumphs, Cook placed limits to the 
genius of man, declaring that no future navigator would penetrate farther south- 
wards, his record has already been beaten, and since his time the known siirface 
of the ocean has been enlarged in the direction of the South Pole. The lands 
discovered in some places are sufficiently contiguous to each other to be regarded 
as very probably forming a continuous seaboard. They would thus collectively 
constitute one of the largest islands on the surface of the globe. 

The most extensive mass of dry land in the Antarctic Zone occurs to the south 
of Australia. In 1839, Ballenyhad already discovered an archipelago of volcanoes 
in the immediate neighbourhood of the polar circle. According to his estimate 
the insular cone of Young Island, which is completely snowclad, would appear to 
attain an elevation of at least 12,000 feet. Another much lower island was seen 
to eject two columns of vapour. But the valleys and ravines between the peaks 
are everywhere filled with ice or glaciers, so that the bare rock is visible only 
where the action of the waves has revealed the black lavas of the cliffs and 
headlands surmounted by a covering of white snow. No creeks occur, nor even 
any strand, except here and there a narrow beach strewn with ashes and shingly 
scoriae. Sailing to the west of this archipelago, mainly about the sixty-fifth degree 
south latitude, Balleny thought he sighted land in two places, and even gave the 
name of Sabrina Land to some high ground dimly seen from a distance. 

The following year the French navigator, Dumout d'Urville, and the Americun 



Wilkes, were attracted to itese waters in the hope of here fixing the exact position 
of the south magnetic pole. They again visited the seas explored by Balleny, 
and both unhesitatingly asserted that they sighted true land, and not merely 
continuous bands of floating ice. D'Urville gave the name of Adelia to the 
rugged coast from 3,000 to 4,000 feet high, which he observed to the south and 
followed westwards across some ten degrees of the meridian, without, however, 
lauding at any point. Farther west Wilkes also sighted land in four places, and 

Scale 1 : 100,000,000. 

Supposed Coutiaent, 

all the elevated ground, whether scattered islands or continuous land, has received 
the general designation of Wilkes Land. 

Nevertheless James Ross, who followed a different track, threw some doubts 
on the reports of the three navigators who had followed each other in this oceanic 
region. Nothing, in fact, is more deceptive than the hazy horizons of these 
southern waters, where the rays of a low sun are refracted on the ice, and where 
the most practised eye is needed to distinguish between a real rocky crag and a 
"crystalline mountain detached from some distant glacier." Except at one point, 


where he'came close to the bhick rocks of a line of cliffs, Wilkes kept everywhere 
at a distance of about twelve miles from the ice-fringed land, which appeared 
to be everywhere covered with hoar-frost. East of the Balleny Islands, he 
reported a mountain mass on the very spot where James Ross, sailing in an open 
sea, afterwards failed to touch the bottom with a sounding-line 1,000 fathoms long. 

But whatever view be taken of the true character of Wilkes Land, it is certain 
that east of the Balleny Archipelago the sea extends much farther southwards. 
James Ross explored these waters in 1841 and 1842, each time penetrating nearer 
to the South Pole than any previous or subsequent navigator. In 1842, the 
expedition specially equipped for piercing the ice floes reached 78° 9 30", which, 
however, is still over 800 miles in a bee-line from the South Pole, or nearly 400 
miles short of the corresponding point reached in the Arctic Zone. During his first 
voyage, Ross followed southwards the east coast of a region which he named 
Victoria Land, and which is lined by imposing mountains such as the glittering 
ice-capped peak of Sabrina (10,000 feet), and the still loftier Melbourne, rising to 
an altitude of considerably over 13,000 feet. 

At the point where the expedition was compelled to turn back, there towered 
above the ice-bound waters the twin volcanoes of Erebus (12,000 feet) and Terror 
(11,000 feet), the former of which emitted volumes of smoke, murkj' during the 
day and ruddy at night. The navigators, who had succeeded in getting ashore at 
two places on this Austral continent, were prevented from landing near the 
volcanoes bj' a wall of ice nearly 350 feet high, which formed the escarpment ' 
of a vast plain at least 300 miles broad. 

East of Victoria Land the expeditions of Cook and Bellingshausen have revealed 
the existence of no Antarctic mainland south of the East Pacific waters, or of any 
land at all, except a doubtful islet reported by Cook, and by him named Stone 
Island. But in the region south of America, facing Cape Horn and the neigh- 
bouring archipelagoes, the islands or perhaps the coasts of a great Antarctic land 
have been seen at several points in the neiglibourhood of the polar circle. Here 
Bellingshausen discovered Alexander Land, which is probably continuous with the 
hilly coast of Graham's Land observed by Biscoe in 1832, and more carefully 
indicated by Dallman in 1874. Then to the north-east of this elevated ground 
stretch parallel chains of numerous islands, comprising Louis-Philippe and de Join- 
ville Lands, discovered by 'Dumont d'Urville, the Shetland Isles and Southern 
Orkneys, already sighted by the English and American whalers, and perhaps even 
by the Dutch vessel Van Geerifs in 1598. All these are mountainous masses 
encircled by deep waters where the sounding-line records hundreds of fathoms 
Avithin a few cable-lengths of the shore. 

But immediately to the east of these archipelagoes, Captain Weddell, in 
command of a whaler, forced a passage in 1823 through the floating ice and 
entered a perfectly open sea, where he penetrated southwards beyond the seventy- 
fourth degree of latitude. This is the southernmost point yet reached in the waters 
stretching south of the Atlantic. Farther east — that is, in the direction of Wilkes 
Land — the only dry land yet seen are the coasts of Enderby and Kemp, extending 



to the south of the polar circle. Biscoe, who discovered Enderby in 1831, in vain 
attempted to land on the island, being everywhere prevented by the masses of 
ice at a distance of 18 or 20 mUes from the shore. Nevertheless, a whaler subse- 
quently succeeded in reaching this point. TheYictoria and Louis-Philippe mountains, 
which of all the Antarctic regions advance farthest northwai'ds, are situated, the 

Scale 1 : 3,300,000. 


1,000 Fathoms 
and upwards. 
60 MUes. 

former over against New Zealand, the latter opposite tbe southern extremity of 
America. Thus mountain ranges and volcanic chains face each other on either 
side of the Antarctic waters. 

Since the voyages of Ross — that is to say, for nearly half a century — no scientific 
expedition has penetrated beyond the polar circle. In 1874 the Challenger 
approached without crossing it. It is surprising that in these days of daring 


enterprise the serious prosecution of the work of exjiloration should have been 
suspended for so many years, more especially as research has been greatly 
facilitated by the progress of maritime enterprise and the thousand resources 
offered by modern appliances. Hence it is with a certain feeling of shame that 
geographers have to record the enormous gaps still occurring along the line of 
antarctic navigation, and well may ask for volunteers to resume the work of 
Cook, Ross, d'Urville and other illustrious navigators. At one time it was hoped 
that the next expedition might have been fitted out in Australia, which lies 
nearest to the south polar lands, and whose inhabitants are most interested in 
investigating the meteorological and glacial phenomena of those frigid regions. 
Between the southernmost point of Tasmania and the coast of Wilkes Land the 
distance is not more than 1,600 miles. But a scheme advocated in 1888 came to 
nothing owing to the parsimony of the British Government, which refused to 
grant the modest sum of £5,000 required to meet the preKrainary expenses. The 
question, however, has now been taken up by the Germans, and there are some 
prospects that the influence of Dr. Neumayer may induce the Reichstag to grant 
a sufficient sum to defray the expenses of a German antarctic expedition. 

Bathvmetkic Researches. 

In the f)art of the ocean whose surface has already been surveyed, the 
exploration of its depths has long been begun, and the density of the marine 
waters may even be said to be ascertained, at least in a general way. The Indian 
Ocean presents as a whole a tolerably regular bed, with a somewhat uniform depth 
of over 2,000 fathoms. As revealed by the soundings of the Challenger and 
other more recent expeditions, the submarine escarpments of the continent and 
large islands enclosing this basin on three sides fall rapidly down to the oceanic 
abysses, so that almost everywhere a depth of 1,000 fathoms occurs within 130 
miles of the coasts. Towards 40° south latitude a body of equal depth floods the 
sill which forms the southern limit of the Indian Ocean, properly so called. 

Within this normal bathymetric curve of 1,000 fathoms, which is disposed 
nearly parallel with the continental seaboards, the line of 2,000 fathoms describes 
a large number of sinuosities, at least to the west and north round about 
Madagascar, the Mascarenhas, the Seychelles, and the Laccadives. The Chagos 
archipelago also rises in the midst of abysses flooded by from 2,000 to 2,500 
fathoms of water. The mean for the whole Indian Ocean is estimated by 
John Murray at about 2,100 fathoms, or 450 more than Otto Kriimmel's 

The greatest cavities hitherto revealed by the sounding line in this basin occur 
in the regions lying between the north-west coast of Australia and the islands of 
Java and Sumatra. Here the vessels engaged in laying the submarine cable have 
recorded depths of from 2,600 to 2,800 fathoms, and to this abyss Kriimmel proposes 
to give the name of the " Lemurian Depression." It is a remarkable fact that the 
deepest chasms in the Indian Ocean have been found at relativelv short distances 



from the shore, and in the vicinity of the most actiye volcanic area in the Sunda 
Islands. Along nearly the whole coastline of the Antarctic lands south of the 
Indian and Pacific Oceans the waters appear to be much shallower, judging at 
least from the results of the few soundings that have hitherto been taken. It 
would almost seem as if the greater cavities had been gradually filled in by the 
ice-borne debris from the austral regions. Nevertheless, an enormous abyss does 
apparentlj' occur under the Antarctic polar circle to the south-east of the Southern 

Fig. 8. — Depths of the Austkai. Seas. 
Scale 1 : 100,000,000. 

Orkneys, where James Eoss failed to touch the bottom with a sounding line 
over 4,200 fathoms long. This solitary record, however, will have to be verified 
by fresh observations. 

Compared witb the Indian Ocean, which is destitute of islands in its more 
central parts, the Pacific, everywhere studded with archipelagoes, presents an 
extremely irregular bed. In many places occur elevated submarine banks, which 
would be transformed to islands or peninsulas were the sea-level to be lowered a 

vo].. XIV. c 


few hundred fathoms. The three great Indonesian islands of Sumatra, Java, and 
Borneo, together with' the Malay peninsula, all rest on a vast flooded plateau, 
where the water is scarcely anywhere more than forty fathoms deep. The two 
great oceanic basins are here separated by a sill some 900 miles broad. Australia 
and New Guinea may in the same way be regarded as forming upheaved portions 
of a common submarine bank, which also comprises Tasmania in the south, and in 
the north several insular groups contiguous to Papuasia. 

But the two regions of the Eastern Archipelago and Australia are separated by 
a trough over 500 fathoms deep skirting the east side of Timor, while depths of 
over 2,000 fathoms have been recorded to the south of Ceram. 

In the Pacific properly so called most of. the archipelagoes with their dependent 
chains of reefs also rest on elevated banks, which like that of Central America are 
nearly all disposed in the direction from north-west to south-east. In the vast 
semicircle of continental lands sweeping round from the Cape of Good Hope to Cape 
Horn, the archipelagoes of the Pacific would thus appear to be the scattered frag- 
ments of a circle resting eastwards on the American seaboard. The disposition of 
these outer and inner curves maj^ be compared to" that of many large breached 
craters, within which have been developed regular craters of smaller dimensions. 

The deep cavities limited on either side by the elevated banks have received 
from the English and American explorers names which recall either the vessels 
employed in the hydrographic surveys of the South Seas, or else the naturalists who 
have laboured with the greatest zeal in these bathymetric operations. Thus the 
circular cavity to the west of Tasmania over 2,000 fathoms deep has been named 
" Jeffrey's Trough." Here the line recorded at one spot a dejjth of no less than 
2,600 fathoms. On the east side of Tasmania in the direction of New Zealand 
occurs another chasm of larger size and equal depth (Thomson's), which is con- 
tinued in the north towards Queensland by that of Patterson, thirty or forty 
fathoms deeper. Those of the Gazelle, running parallel with the general axis 
of the oceanic islands, that Is, in the direction from the north-west to south-east, 
are somewhat shallower, nowhere exceeding 2,300 fathoms. At their western 
extremity they are connected with those of Carpenter, which begin at Torres Strait 
and Papuasia, and terminate between New Caledonia and the New Hebrides. At 
the deepest point the plummet here recorded 2,630 fathoms, or about three miles, 
and an equal depth occurs in the Nares pit to the north of New Guinea and New 
Britain. The cavities are still deeper towards the east, where those of Hildgard 
and Miller have 3,080 and 3,305 fathoms respectively. 

North of the Carolines the Pacific waters are far less obstructed by insular 
groups, and, as might have been expected, are proportionately deej)er than those of 
Polynesia properly so called. The cavities named from the ChaUenger, to which 
we are indebted for so many important researches in oceanic physiography, offer 
the enormous depth of 4,575 fathoms between the Carolines and the Marianne 
group, while farther east in the direction of the Marshall Islands other chasms 
have disclosed depths of considerably over 3,000 fathoms. Lastlj% the whole of 
the North Pacific region between Japan and California presents a vast elliptical 


trough encircling a shallower central area, whose axis is formed by the Sandwich 
Islands and the reefs continuing them towards the north-west. The pits named 
from Wyman (3,300), east of Hawaii, as well as those of Belknap (3,100) and 
Ammen (3,094), south and west of the same group, belong to this circular depres- 
sion, which farther west towards Japan takes the name of the Tnscarora, the 
American ship which here revealed the greatest depth yet recorded in any oceanic 
basin. This chasm of 4,650 fathoms, sinking nearly as low as the highest moun- 
tain rises above sea-level, is situated about 240 miles to the east of the southern 
extremitj- of the Kurile Archipelago. 

As in the Indian Ocean, the greatest depths would thus seem to occur also in 
the Pacific in the neighbourhood of igneous areas, that is, along the line of active 
volcanoes which curves round from Japan to the peninsula of Alaska. These 
chains of burning mountains may thus be said to represent the true coastline of 
the North Pacific basin. Beyond them the waters are comparatively very 
shallow, except in one part of the Bering Sea, where depths of 500 and even 
1,000 fathoms have been recorded. The projecting mainlands of North-east Asia 
and North-west America rest on a common submarine base, which approaches very 
near to the surface. In Bering Strait itself the mean depth is little over 20 
fathoms, and nowhere exceeds 30 fathoms. Between these shallows, here scarcely 
separating the two continents, and the profound abysses of the North Pacific the 
transition is verj^ sudden. At some jooint the soimdings have revealed precipitous 
inclines which would be regarded as steep slopes even in Continental Alpine regions. 

Except in the neighbourhood of California the Eastern Pacific waters have been 
less carefully surveyed than the Australasian seas. The whole space, some 
12,000,000 square miles in extent, comprised between the Polynesian archi- 
pelagoes and the American seaboard from Mexico to Chili, was still unsounded 
before the expedition of the Italian vessel, the Vettor Pisani, in 1885. Now 
however, we possess a series of thirteen soundings between the coast of New 
Grenada and the Sandwich Islands, where 3,140 fathoms was the greatest depth 
recorded by this expedition. Allowing for the irregularity of the intervals 
between these soundings, the mean depth of the marine bed in this part of the 
East Pacific Ocean would appear to be about 2,300 fathoms. Before the Vettor 
Pisani expedition the velocity of the waves caused by great seaquakes was the 
only available means for determining the depth of the waters in this section of 
the oceanic basin. 

The .specimens brought to the surface during the various exploring expeditious 
present on the whole a remarkable uniformitJ^ In the vicinitj' of the land, and 
especially about the great fluvial estuaries, the mud and claj's of the marine bed 
are formed by deposits of terrestrial origin mingled with fragments of shells and 
corals. Farther seaward, in depths ranging from 500 to 1,500 fathoms, the sedi- 
mentary matter consists of triturated shells and the calcareous remains of animal- 
culas. The mud dredged in these waters contains from ninety to ninety-five per 
cent, of carbonate of lime. But according as the depths increase this proportion 
diminishes, and in aby.^ses of 2,000 to 2,500 fathoms the prevailing formation is 



everywhere a clay formed of foraminifera, radiolaria, diatoms, and other remains 
of minute organisms mixed with particles of pumice and various decomposed 
products of volcanic origin. Neither gravel nor the bare rock has anywhere been 
discovered on the deep bed of the Indian Ocean. 

The slight proportion of carbonate of lime in clays lying at great depths is 
due to the carbonic acid present in the water. The countless calcareous organisms 
falling as dust from the upper marine waters become completely dissolved before 
reaching the bottom. But sharks' teeth and the skeletons of cetaceans occur 
abundantly in the argillaceous deposits, from which the remains of extinct and 
living animals are often fished up together. Nodules of iron of cosmic origin arc 
also found interspersed in the same clays. 

Atmospheric Currents. 

As attested by the very name of " Pacific," given to the great ocean by its first 
discoverers, storms are less frequent in this basin than in the Atlantic, at least in 
the tropical latitudes with low tides. This is due to the vast uniform surface 
presented by an immense extent of the South Sea far from the neighbourhood of 
continental seaboards, which owing to the great differences in their reliefs give 
rise to abrupt changes in the climate and the course of the winds. The waters are 
usually the least ruffled and navigation safest in the Eastern Pacific regions, 
where vessels sail for thousands of miles without meeting a single island. Here 
also the trade winds blow with the greatest uniformity. Those from the north- 
east prevail with great constancy in the^troiDical zone some 7,000 miles broad 
comprised between the Revilla-Gigedo and the Marianne groups. The south- 
eastern trades have a less extensive range of about 3,000 miles between the 
Galapagos and the Marquesas. 

But the course of the atmospheric currents is interrupted and frequently turned 
backwards by the thousand independent centres of attraction formed by the insular 
groups, some mountainous, others scarcely rising above the surface, which 
are scattered over the West Pacific equatorial waters. The normal trades are here 
often replaced by the alternating winds, which follow in the track of the sun. 
During the winter of the southern hemisphere the south-east trades are most 
regular ; but in summer their ascendency is contested by northern and north- 
eastern breezes. Frequently also dead calms set in, while occasionally the con- 
flicting currents give rise to cyclonic movements. 

A remarkably mild temperature usually prevails in the oceanic archipelagoes, 
surrounded by waters which are subject to less vicissitudes of heat and cold even 
than the atmosphere itself. Between the hottest and coldest month on either side 
of the equator within the tropics the mean temperature of 72° to 77° F. has an 
extreme range limited to from four to eight degrees. Nevertheless, the oscilla- 
tions for the whole year range from twenty-eight to thirty-six degrees according 
to the position of the insular groups. 

The rainfall also shows discrepancies of as much as tenfold and upwards, accord- 



ing as the slopes of the islauds are exposed to the moist or dry wiuds. Thus while 
certain valleys enjoy a copious and even an excessive annual supply of moisture, 
certain low-lj'ing islands in the neighbourhood of the equator receive scarcely a 
single shower except at long intervals. 

"West and south-west of the PoljTiesian islands properly so called, the vicinity 
of the great insular masses, such as New Guinea, Australia, Celebes, and Borneo, 
attracts the aerial currents more powerfully in the hot seasons than at other times. 
Hence are developed here, not merely gentle breezes, as in Eastern Oceania, but 
regular monsoons of longer or shorter duration, according to the diverse conditions 
of the environment, the extent of dry land, the altitude of the highlands, the super- 
ficial area of spaces destitute of vegetation. In these regions the south-east trades 
prevail during the winter season of the southern hemisphere ; but in summer the 
normal currents set from the west or nortt-west, and are usually accompanied by 
moisture-bearing clouds and heavy downpours. Thus the normal meteorological 
system is regulated by two uniformly alternating currents setting in contrary 
directions, and of essentially different character, one bringing fair the other foul 
weather. Nevertheless, the endless intricacies of creeks, bays, inlets, straits, and 
channels cause numerous irregulai'ities and local breezes, by which the whole 
system is in many places greatly modified. 

On the very verge of the range of the monsoons the atmospheric currents are 
deflected from their regular path. The waters of Torres Strait between New 
Guinea and Australia, obstructed by innumerable shoals and reefs, and averaging 
not more than some 10 or 12 fathoms in depth, are heated by the tropical suns to 
a much higher degree than the deep oceanic basins to the east and west. The 
consequence is a considerable increase of temperature in the circumambient 
atmosphere, which thus becomes a focus of attraction for all the surrounding- 
currents. The north-east trades veer round so as to set directly up the strait, where 
they blow with great violence during the winter months. On the other hand, 
the summer monsoons, which prevail especially in December, January, and Feb- 
ruary, cease to set in the direction of the south-east and are deflected towards the 
strait about Port- Moresby, thus depriving the York peninsula of its due share of 

In the centre of the labyrinth of islands between New Guinea and Borneo the 
aerial sj'stem is so disturbed b}- the various modifying conditions of the environ- 
ment, that it is not always possible to determine with certainty the true character 
of the current, whether a trade- wind or a monsoon, or to decide to which should 
be attributed the moisture-bearing clouds. Here the annual rainfall is generally 
very copious, in some islands, such as Sumatra, exceeding 160 inches. The aver- 
age temperature (78° to 82° F., according to the aspect of the seaboard) is also 
higher than in the South Sea Islands ; it is also more uniform, varying not more 
than four or five degrees between the hottest and coldest months. The yearly 
range is, in fact, less than the daily variation between the morning and afternoon. 
Owing to this equable regime the Eastern Archipelago has been called the 
" hothouse " of the great terrestrial botanical garden. 


West of Borneo and the Philippines the meteorological conditions are again 
modified by the dijfferences in the outlines and elevations of the great insular 
masses. Here mariners no longer speak of trade winds, and recognise the 
monsoons alone. That of the south-west, sweeping over the Sunda Strait and 
Sumatra, prevails somewhat regularly from the middle of April to the middle of 
October, in the more open waters stretching awaj' to Formosa. But it is occasion- 
allv interrupted by the south-eastern winds, and on the insular and continental 
seaboards its course is fringed by lateral breezes, eddies, and back-currents, which 
enable sailing craft to beat up against the monsoon. 

This south-west wind which prevails in summer is followed in winter by the 
north-east monsoon, which is in fact the normal polar current. Like the south- 
west monsoon it blows throughout half the year, although most intensely in 
December and January. Both seasons are accomjjanied by rains, as well as by 
sudden gales and storms. But the terrific cyclonic movements of the China Sea, 
here known as typhoons, that is, Un ftmg, or " great winds," occur chiefly during 
the south-west monsoon in June or July, or else towards the September equinox 
when the normal annual currents are reversed. These fierce whirlwinds, which 
are generally developed in the east, move with spiral action in the direction of the 
west or north-west. They are usually more intense in the vicinity of the land 
than on the high seas, and fall off rapidly towards the south. Hence the 
typhoons rarely extend their range towards the equatorial regions in the waters 
stretching south of Lucon, largest of the Philippine Islands. 

Beyond the Sunda Archipelago, that is, in the open sjDace presented by the 
Indian Ocean as far as the Mascarenhas and Madagascar, the winds are less 
influenced by insular or continental seaboards, and consequently here acquire a far 
more regular course. The zone of the south-east trades, which occupies the 
section of the ocean comprised between Australia, Madagascar, and the equator, is 
uniformly displaced northwards and southwards according to the alternation of the 
seasons themselves. Thus it is shifted to the north of the equator with the 
movement of the sun towards the northern hemisphere, while at other times its 
range seldom extends much beyond the 5° of south latitude. 

But round about the central part of the ocean, dominated by the regular 
system of the south-east trades, there stretches the vast semicircle of lands between 
South Africa and Australia, which are fringed by a zone of alternating monsoons 
setting landwards during the hot and seawards during the cold season. In no 
region of the globe have the monsoons a more regular course than in the northern 
section of the Indian Ocean between Somaliland and Sumatra. The south-west 
monsoon with its escort of thunderstorms and rains prevails from the middle of 
April to the middle of September throughoiit the Arabian Sea and the Bay of 
Bengal. It is followed by that of the north-east, that is, the polar current, which 
lasts from the middle of October to the middle of March. But in the southern 
hemisphere the atmospheric system is less regular on the coasts of Australia, 
Madagascar, and the African mainland; nor is the contrast between land and 
nater so sharply marked in this region. Here also, as in the China Sea, the clash 


of the conflicting winds at times gives rise to tremendous hurricunes, especially at 
the change of the monsoons and during the summer heats. These disturbiiuces 
are most disastrous in the neighbourhood of the Mascarenhas, although they 
also occasionally spread havoc over the waters of the Gulf of Aden and the Bay of 

On their outer borders in the direction of the poles the region of the trade 
■winds is skirted by zones of variable currents, the mean result of which generally 
takes the direction from west to east. Being enclosed towards the north, the 
Indian Ocean has naturally one only of these zones comprised mainly between 28° 
and 60° south latitude. But the Pacific, as well as the Atlantic, has its two 
systems of variable winds, one in the northern the other in the southern hemi- 
sphere, the latter merging westwards in that of the Indian Ocean, eastwards in 
that of the Atlantic, and thus completing the circuit of the globe. The discovery 
of these oceanic regions dominated b}- the western currents, that is by the counter 
trade winds, has been of paramount importance in the history of maritime research. 
Guided by his knowledge of the Atlantic winds, Urdaneta was thus enabled to 
direct vessels across the Pacific towards the shores of the Jfew World, while by fol- 
lowing the corresponding zone of variable winds in the southern hemisphere Cook 
successfully accomplished the circumnavigation of the planet in the contrary 
direction to that followed by Magellan. 

Marine Currents. 

The movement of the marine corresponds to that of the aerial currents in the 
great oceanic basin, but the former, belonging to a more stable element, are 
naturally of a more constant character than the latter. They represent, so to say, 
the fly-wheel of the great terrestrial mechanism. Hence the rythmical displace- 
ments of the waters across the boundless oceanic spaces have been of even greater 
moment than those of the atmosphere in the history of human progress. If the 
trades and coimter-trades have enabled European navigators the more easily to 
traverse the ocean between the Old and the Xew TTorld, and thus hastened the 
work of exploration amongst the oceanic islands and austral lands, to the marine 
currents was largely due the dispersion of mankind and gradual peopling of half 
the globe. 

The prominent feature in the vast system of oceanic movements is the great 
stream which in the equatorial seas sets in the same direction as the apparent 
course of the sun between the shores of the New World and those of New Guinea 
and the Philippines. The liquid volume which thus trends from east to west has 
a mean breadth of probably over 3,000 mUes, for it is occasionally observed 
ranging from 26^ south to 2-1° north latitude, but with a reflux or a zone of calm 
waters in its central parts. The whole body of equatorial seas moves with a 
velocity varying from 20 to 40 miles a day according to the seasons and the 
surroundings, and to a depth which certainly exceeds 750 fathoms in the axis of 
the stream. And this prodigious moving mass traverses nearly one-half of the 


circumference of the planet. Compared with such an oceanic current all the 
rivers flowing from the continental regions seawards sink into insignificance. 
The discharge is at least 70,000 millions of cubic feet per second. 

This vast central current, main branch of the system of secondary streams 
developed in the rest of the ocean, gives rise to two great lateral backwaters, one 
in the North Pacific, the other in the Southern Ocean. Taking the same course 
as the monsoons of the Caroline Archipelago, the waters of the equatorial stream 
are deflected towards the north-west in the direction of Japan ; then on approaching 
the Chinese seaboard they follow the coast towards the north-east, and under the 
name of Kuro-Sivo, or " Black Stream," expand into a vast curve across the North 
Pacific. Although gradually losing the character of a current in the strict sense 
of the term, it sets slowly along the coasts of British North America, the United 
States, and Lower California, ultimately rejoining the equatorial current. 

To this gieat stream in the northern corresjjonds another in the southern 
hemisphere. South of the equatorial seas a liquid mass passing east and west of 
New Zealand turns south to the austral waters, and by a curve symmetrical with 
that of the Kuro-Sivo merges west of Chili in a littoral current, which skirts the 
American coast till it becomes again absorbed in the equatorial stream. An 
analogous movement takes place in the Indian Ocean, where the waters of the hot 
zone also set slowly in the direction of the west. At Madagascar they ramify into 
two branches, which flow southwards, and in the Antarctic regions form a junction 
with a return current, which after coasting the West Australian seaboard rejoin 
the equatorial waters. 

But although analogous in their main features these three great movements 
present many striking differences in their details, according as they are affected 
by the course of the winds, the depths of the seas, the form and disposition of 
the neighbouring lands. In many places the more sluggish waters quicken their 
speed, and in the very heart of the sea is thus developed a sort of river, whose 
water is distinguished from that on either side both by its colour and velocity. 
The friction against its liquid banks causes it to oscillate in short waves like those 
of a fluvial rapid, while the conflict of waters of varying temperature gives rise to 
fogs spreading over vast spaces. Such phenomena are observed chiefly about the 
Kuro-Sivo of Japan and its eastern extension across the North Pacific. 

Each counter current has also its lateral streams, which penetrate into the 
straits and inlets, as well as its tribiitaries of cold water flowing from the polar seas. 
An incessant interchange goes on between the tepid floods of the equatorial regions 
and those of low temperature coming from the frigid zone. These polar waters 
move bodily in the direction of the equator, in order to replace the losses caused by 
evaporation under the tropical latitudes. According to the course of the winds, 
the form of the marine bed and of the seaboards, this collective displacement 
becomes decomposed in secondary and more rapid streams, some of which flow by 
the side of those setting in the contrary direction from the equator, while others 
passing underneath them continue their course at lower depths. 

At first sight it might be sujjposed that all the polar streams, being colder and 


consequently relatively denser than the equatorial, should in all cases plunge 
beneath the more tejjid waters with which they come in contact. But some, being- 
less saline, owing either to their slighter evaporation or to their mingling with 
the fresh water of the melting icebergs, are in fact lighter than the surrounding 
warmer masses, and consequently rise to the surface. Naturalists engaged in 
exploring the oceanic depths endeavour to detect the course of these super- 
imposed currents setting in opposite directions by ascertaining the temjaerature at 
certain intervals along the line of soundings. This is one of the most delicate of 
marine operations, the full significance of the recorded phenomena being itself at 
times very difficult to appreciate. But by carefully comparing the results of 
observations taken in different places they are able gradually to arrive at trust- 
worthy conclusions. 

The normal sequence of temperatures from the surface to the bottom has already 
been determined. The upper layer being in contact with the atmosphere, its tem- 
perature coincides with that of the local isothermals, while the deeper waters are 
scarcely above freezing-point, the intermediate spaces showing a regular transition 
between the two extremes. All anomalies in this gradual transition, all abrupt 
changes are assumed to indicate the presence of disturbing currents. Thus in the 
austral seas, between 34° and 66° south latitude, the gradation of temperature is 
modified by the neighbourhood of floating ice. At from 500 to 1,100 feet below 
the surface a cold layer intervenes between the upper strata heated by the summer 
suns and the lower waters whose temperature decreases normally downwards. 
This cold layer, which oscillates about the freezing point, is evidently due to the 
melting of the enormous icebergs always present in these latitudes. 

Of the special cold currents either setting from the poles or rising from the 
lower depths, the most remarkable for its influence on the climate of the coastlanda 
is the stream named from Humboldt, and known also as the Peruvian Current, 
which skirts the western shores of South America, and which is from 20° to 
22° F. colder than the neighbouring waters. The North American seaboard is 
also washed by a frigid stream, which flows southward to the equatorial seas. 
A small part of this stream may perhaps in Bering Strait intersect a branch 
of the tepid water setting towards the Arctic Ocean ; but the great mass of the 
cold water trending southwards comes from the Alaska seas and other inlets of the 
North Pacific. 

The marine waters are thus being everywhere constantly displaced, and in this 
way the southern floods with their corresponding flora and fauna are carried 
northwards, while the regions of the torrid zone are tempered by contact with 
the polar currents. The climates of the two different zones blend in a new 
climate, thanks to the intermingling streams, or else flow side by side in opposite 
directions, since to every displacement corresponds an opposite movement. Even 
the great equatorial stream has its counter-stream, which answers to the atmo- 
spheric zone of calms, and which, especially from June to October, sets in the 
direction from west to east, that is, from New Guinea to Equador. It is precisely 
in the axis of the equatorial stream, and especially south of the line, that this 



general backward movement of the oceanic waters malces itself felt. It has an 
estimated mean breadth of three hiindred miles ; but it follows a somewhat 
irregular course, and in many places merges in lateral backwaters. 

The Indian Ocean has also its counter equatorial stream skirting the north side 
of the current which sets towards the west. Students of historical migrations 
attach the greatest importance to those parallel currents flowing in ojDposite direc- 
tions, and thus facilitatiug the movement of peojjles from continent to continent. 

Drift Ice — Icebergs and Floes. 

Round about the Antarctic ice-cap the approach to the islands and mainland is 
obstructed by continuous streams of drift ice and floes, which are constantly drifting 

Fig. 9. — Ice Field traced by Ditmont D'Ueville. 
Scale 1 : 1,330,000. 


about, in one place grouped together in the form of gulfs or marine inlets, in 
another disposed like projecting headlands, elsewhere developing long narrow 
passages into which navigators cannot venture to penetrate without extreme cau- 
tion. Ranging in height from 10 to 14 feet, but here and there interspersed with 
irregular groups or " bunches," resembling erratic boulders, these masses no longer 
present an insurmountable obstacle to mariners provided with the powerful appli- 
ances of modern mechanics, and with vessels specially constructed to resist the 
impact or pressure of floating ice. 

Beyond these shifting barriers stretch comparatively open spaces which are 
occupied only by great icebergs, either isolated or accompanied by a cortege of 
lesser blocks. Explorers who have penetrated into these Antarctic seas about the 
polar circle, or even bej'ond 70° south latitude, have observed that these icebergs 


drifting northwards with the current differ both iu their form and origin. Some, 
which break away from steep upland valleys, present a great diversity of outline 
and appearance. According to the lines of fracture or the tilt of the glaciers 
shooting them seawards, they rise above the surface in the form of domes, peaks, 
or needles. Others again, which are usually of vast size, take the shape of rect- 
angular blocks with almost level upper surface. These are not of glacier origin, 
but have been detached from the icy barrier skirting the flat coastlands at varying 
distances. They do not melt even in summer. During the fine seasons of 1841, 
1842, and 1843, Ross found that only on eighteen days the temperature rose three 
or four degrees above freezing point. Some were fringed with transjDarent stalac- 
tites, which this explorer was unable to explain, as he had never observed the ice 

As far as can be judged from the few observations hitherto made, the frozen 
masses, 160 to 180 feet high, are simply the land ice gradually impelled seawards 
by the pressure of the more or less inclined masses covering the interior of the 
continent. Owing to their specific gravity thej' project for distances of even 
10 or 20 miles beyond the coastline, while still adhering to the rocky bed. In the 
neighbourhood of the barrier Ross found a depth of 250 fathoms, which is precisely 
the depth at which icebergs rising 180 or 200 feet above the surface must, so to 
say, " lose their footing," and float away freely. The weight of the icebergs being 
about nine-tenths of that of marine water, nine-tenths of their volume must neces- 
sarily remain .submerged ; but the mass being generally broader at the base than 
the summit, the depth of the submerged walls must be estimated at seven or eight 
times the height of the exposed clifl's. 

Once detached from the continental sheet of ice by some rectilinear form of 
breakage, the huge flotsam sets out on its long journey towards the equatorial seas. 
Some of the blocks present a regular wall 5 or 6 miles long with arched openings 
at the base. They look almost like some street frontage gone adrift, at times 
sparkUng in the sun, but more frequently wrapped in vapour, like some misty 
phantom of the brain. A nearer view reveals a frowning stronghold, faced by 
mighty bastions ; embattled ramparts or gloomy recesses where the angry waters 
disappear amid the flanking towers ; overhanging cornices with snowy draperies 
pendent from the summit. The icy cliffs, standing out at a distance with even surface 
of uniform duU colour, are now resolved into an endless variety of tints and outlines. 
Throughout the whole thickness of the walls follow the parallel parting lines of the 
successive snowy layers crystallized by pressure and the weather, drawing continu- 
ally closer with the superincumbent weight, here and there warped to serpentine 
curves or else fractured with sharp fissures. The prominent parts are of a dazzling 
whiteness, others shaded in blue, each slope, each crystal aperture the loveliest azure, 
and at night the floating mass is all aglow with an opal phosphoi-escence. It drifts 
slowly with the current, incessantly lashed by the waves breaking against it, as 
against some rocky shoal. The crews of passing vessels often hear the continuous 
thunder of the waters rushing through its cavernous recesses and dashing against 
the inner walls. Then the sustaining pillars at last give way, the arched vaults 


break with a crash, and the scattered fragments of the crystalline mountains lose 
that tabular form which is so characteristic of the soutliern as compared with the 
northern icebergs. Gradually breaking into smaller pieces, the debris floats away 
in long convoys, where it is no longer possible to distinguish those of marine from 
those of glacier oi'igin. 

According to the quantity of the drifting ice and the velocity of the currents 
the fragments advance to a greater or lesser distance northwards, as a rule, 
however, seldom penetrating much bej^ond the 55° of south latitude. Yet they 
have not unfrequently been met much nearer the equator, especially to the 
west of New Zealand and in the South Atlantic, where they have been seen as 
far north as Tristao da Cunha, and off the Cape of Good Hope under the thirty- 
fourth parallel. On an average the austral advance 240 miles nearer to the 
equator than the northern icebergs. The largest observed by the Challenger 
was about 250 feet high ; but Cook recorded one over 330 feet, while several 
fully one-third higher were measured by Wilkes. They range as a rule from 
1,500 to 3,000 feet in breadth, yet none of those seen by the naturalists of the 
Challenger carried any fragments detached from the rocky mountain slopes, 
although such cases were frequently observed by Ross, Dumoiit d'Urville, and 
other explorers. A sketch by John MacNab, who accompanied Balleny's ex- 
pedition of 1839, represents an iceberg bearing a black rock embedded between 
two cr\ stal nijjpers. Another huge mass seen by Weddell was so covered with 
blackish claj' that at a distance it would certainly have been taken for a cliff. 

Volcanic Agencies. 

Drift ice thus contributes in some measure to raodifj' the form of the continents 
by transporting debris of all kinds to the islands scattered for thousands of miles 
over the ocean, or depositing them on the marine bed and in this way perhaps 
laying the foundation for future barrier reefs. But other ageucies are also at 
work, in one place enlarging, in another diminishing the contours of the oceanic 
lands. The researches of naturalists have shown that during the course of long 
ages these agencies have accomplished considerable changes in the geograjjhy of 
the Pacific islands. In the work of modification the chief jjart has been played 
by the submarine igneous forces, and the coralline " island builders," which strew 
the seas with their marvellous structures. 

Volcanoes are far more numerous and energetic in the Pacific basin and sur- 
rounding continental seaboards than on the opposite shores of the Old and New 
World washed by the Atlantic. The fires of Iceland, the Azores, the Canaries, the 
Cape Yerd Islands and West Indies, pale before those which follow at intervals 
around the vast semicircle formed by the coasts of the mainlands sweeping round 
from Cape Horn to the Cape of Good Hope. The craters are reckoned by hundreds 
in this "fiery circle " some 20,000 miles in extent, which reaches from the northern 
island of New Zealand to the southern shores of Chili. Here the chain of burn- 
ing mountains, occasionally interrupted by wide intervals, especially north of New 



Ze;ilanrl, compTises the active cones of tlie Xew Hebrides, the Santa-Cniz and Solo- 
mon groups, the chain of the Philippines, and of Japan, where Milne reckons 129, 
of which thirty-fiTe are active, the Kurile Archipelago with sixteen, the Aleutian 
Islands with thirty-four, of which ten are active. Through the Alaskan peninsula 
the series is connected with those of the west coast of America, which are continued 
southwards to the Bridgeman and other cones and westwards to the New Shet- 
land Islands. Here rises the breached crater of Deception Island with its circular 
haven IS or 20 miles round and oOO feet deep, whose flanks consisting of alternate 

Fig. 10. — Volcanoes of the Pacific. 
Scale 1 : 200,000,000. 

strata of ice and ashes discharge rivulets of thermal waters. Lastly, this focus of 
activity is connected by the arc of a circle passing by the south pole with the three 
lofty cones of Erebus, Terror, and Melbourne, the first of which still casts a lurid 
light over the dreary waste of snow. Between these giants and Xew Zealand the 
vast circuit is completed by a succession of islands and headlands, partly at least 
composed of lavas. 

Within the circuit itself occur the lines of faults, through which have been 
vomited mountains of scoriae or ashes, and most of these cones run in parallel lines 


or are disposed iu curves. The Mariannas, the Tonga and Samoan archipelagoes 
have all their volcanoes, and towards the centre of the circuit of North Pacific 
burning mountains rises the group of stupendous Hawaiian craters. 

Beyond the circuit towards the Indian Ocean, a formidable igneous chain, 
beginning to the west of New Guinea, comprises a line of islands west of Timor, 
Flores, Sumbawa, Sombok, and Biili, together with Java with its forty-five cones, 
of which twentj^-eight are still active. West of Java the volcanic chain no longer 
runs westwards, but is intersected at a sharp angle by another line of fracture 
traversing Sumatra with its sixty-seven cones, of which five are still active. On 
the opposite side of the Indian Ocean rise the insular cones of the !Mascarenhas 
and Comoro group, while Madagascar itself is studded with hundreds of extinct 
craters. Others, such as those of St. Paul and Amsterdam, follow in the austral 
waters, here rising amid the surrounding ice floes. 

New Zealand, the Sunda Islands, Japan, the Kuriles and Hawaii are amongst 
the regions that have been most profoundly modified by igneous agencies, at least 
during the historic period. But the most active centre on the surface of the globe 
is probably the Sunda Strait, which marks the precise spot where the two volcanic 
axes of Java and Sumatra intersect each other on the edge of the submarine bank 
separating the Sunda plateau from the deep abysses of the Indian Ocean. Here 
is situated the famous island of Krakatau, which lost two-thirds of its area during 
the eruption of 1883, when other islands rose to the surface, and the atmosphere 
became charged with volcanic dust wafted by the winds round the periphery of 
the globe. 

Coralline Formatioxs. — Atolls. 

The changes caused by the coral builders, although accomplished at a much 
slower rate and without any sudden convulsion of nature, are none the less even 
more important than those due to igneous agency. In the Pacific alone Dana 
enumerates two hundred and ninety coralline islands, which with the inner lagoons 
cover a total ai'ea of no less than 20,000 square miles.* If to these be added, 
surfaces large enough to afford space for a village or clump of cocoauut palms, 
the islands and islets must be reckoned by mmy thousands which have been 
constructed by the polypi in the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and especially in 
the central and western parts of the South Sea. These organisms aie unable 
to carry on their operations in waters whose winter temperature is less than 68° or 
70° F. But the zone where they find the necessary thermal conditions offers on 
either side of the equator a variable breadth, in some places exceeding 3,500 

Everj^ where within these wide limits, living colonies are able to establish them- 
selves on the shores and shallows flooded to depths of 130 to 150, and under certain 
conditions of from 300 to 320 feet. But they are unable to live in waters too 
highly charged with sedimentary or alluvial matter, and the barrier reefs are cou- 

* United Stales Exploring Expedituin, vol. x. 



sequently interrupted bj' large fluvial estuaries. Nor can they secure a footing on 
too rapidly shelving rocks. Hence certain coasts which vre should expect to be formed 
of "living" coral are found to consist only of " dead " matter. The work is also 
hindered or arrested altogether in certain storm-tossed seas, where the deeper and 
colder waters are churned up and driven landwards. Thus may perhaps bo 
explained the absence of corals along a great part of the arid and parched seaboard 
of Somaliland. 

But apart from these few interruptions, the shores and islands of the equatorial 
zone are everywhere fringed or encircled by coral reefs. Besides the polypi, or 
true coral builders, of which there are numerous species, other organisms also 
secrete calcareous matter, and thus contribute towards the enlargement of the di'v 
land. Account must also be taken of the seaweeds, algaj, nulUpores, and the like. 

Fig. 11. — Zone of the Coeaxline Islands, 
Scale 1 : 12ii,oiX»,000. 






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■ MsfJS/7/T£S r ^ , 

,<•• '■'- '-' Ma^3^^// f 

* ' /'■'■■'' ^?'' ""'- ''■ 

Pb/sw Cewo/ifjes ^« ' a"*** "' 

* ** ■ *?». 


° .. . \ ^"?T-,, » 

g, ^ 







f -f^ ^, Ne« eUt/st/amo •> 

•<■!* * 

" oV 

' ' • ''- 

. TifJ^/a/ 

Merldlar.oF IflO-Greerw 



AtoUs. Barrier Eeefs. Upheaved Lamia. 

— ^^— ^— — ^— . l,8iX) Miles. 

some of which develop a solid crust on the rocky surfaces, like the lichens in 
northern latitudes, while others accumulate in thick deposits on the beach. Being 
thus gradually raised by the petrification of successive generations, the reefs con- 
tinue to grow with the new Hfe destined to disappear and become fossilised in its 
turn. This growth of the living rock proceeds as a rule at an extremely slow rate, 
not more than 38 or 40 inches in two hundred or three hundred years ; but the 
field of operation is limited only b}- the boundless extent of the marine waters, and 
the yearly result consequently represents hundreds of millions of cubic yards added 
by all these zoof)hytes to the solid crust of the globe. 

Even islands situated in an area of depression and slowly subsiding when com- 
pared with the surrounding sea-level may be fringed by a band of reefs growing at 
a more rapid rate, and thus gradually rising above the surface of the water. The 


polypi flourii-h best as a rule on the outer rim of tlie reefs, where they are exposed 
lo the fresh currents and wash of the tides, and here their buildings most rapidly 
rise to high-water level. Then their further growth above the surface and trans- 
formation to islands or continental seaboards is the work of storms. Huge blocks 
detached from the encircling reef are thrown together in rude heaps, and gradually 
consolidated by additions. Then the dry surface is weathered and prepared 
for the reception of the seeds brought by wind and water. Here the seafowl build 
their nests, the gei'ras strike root, grasses and shrubs spring up on the new land 
thus born of the tempest. 

The form and appearance of the upheaved coral structures differ greatly accord- 
ing to the regions where they have been Constructed. The least noteworthy are 
the barrier reefs which fringe the insular and continental shore lines, and which 
rest on a foundation of shelving rocks. But in many places the reefs are not in 
contact with the coasts around which they have grown up, but are developed at 
some distance seawards, leaving here and there a navigable passage, or at least 
a flooded channel between their inner edge and the mainland. Some of these 
formations extend for hundreds, and in the case of the Great Barrier Reef of 
Australia for over 1,000 miles along the coast. Others, such as the annular reef 
of New Caledonia, completely encircle the island, which remains as a central 
nucleus to the sj'stem. A slight upheaval would change to dry land the inter- 
mediate space between the island and the ring, thus doiibling or trebling the 
extent of the raised surface. 

Lastly, there are thousands of systems which have no central nucleus, and 
which consist of nothing but a perfect or fragmentary ring enclosing an inner 
lagoon either still communicatiug with or separated from the sea and gradually 
silting up with the accumulating sands and organic debris. Some of these lagoons 
have even been transformed to freshwater basins by the slow action of the rains. 
To all annular reefs has been extended the term afo/l from those of the Mal- 
dive Archipelago, the most regular and numerous group found in the whole 

Every possible transitional form occurs between the barrier reef skirting the 
mainland and the perfectly circular atoll lashed on its outer rim bj^ the stormy 
seas, and enclosing an inner lagoon of smooth water. Most of the forty thousand 
rocks and islets in the Maldive Archipelago are so disposed as to form atolls 
within atolls, that is to say, each fragment of a ring is itself a ring. 

The study of the coralline reefs led the illustrious Darwin to form some bold 
generali.-ations on the slow oscillations of the terrestrial crixst. Finding that the 
barrier reefs and outer walls of the atolls rise in many places above deep waters, 
he concludes that these rocks were entirely built by the same polypi who are still 
piling up similar structures. But as they can work only in the surface waters 
where the ceaseless ebb and flow brings them the materials of their edifices,' the 
great elevation of so many coralline rocks would seem to attest a gradual subsi- 
dence of the marine level. The first colonies began their operations within about 
120 feet of the surface ; but according as the structures rose the ground sank, and 


so the reef continually subsiding at the base and rising at the summit, grew to a 
far greater thickness than 120 feet. 

Thus was explained the formation of barrier reefs at great distances from the 
shore. At one time they fringed the coast, which slowly sank with the general 
movement of subsidence, while the reefs continued awash, thanks to the incessant 
labour of their coralline inhabitants. The mainland, which formerly served to 
supjDort the superstructure, gradually sank deeper and deeper, thus continually 
retiring from the outer barrier of the steadily rising coral reefs. The passage 
also became gradually enlarged, and by the disappearance of the central nucleus 
itself the inner waters were at last transformed to a lagoon. Certain archi- 
pelagoes, such as the Low Islands, are compared by Dana to a vast cemetery, 
where every atoll marks the site of an engulfed land. 

According to this theory it would therefore be easy to determine the character 
of the oscillating movements to which the oceanic islands are subjected. The 
reefs raised to great heights above the sea would thus indicate an area of upheaval, 
the fringing coralline rocks would imply a state of comparative stability on the 
seaboards, while the barriers and the atolls might be likened to floats placed on the 
sites of submerged lands. Most of the Pacific islands — that Is to say, all those that 
foUow from Pitcairn In the Low Archipelago to the Philippines along a Hne 
passing north of Tahiti and Samoa — would thus belong to a zone of depression, and 
these scattered groups might be regarded as fragments of a vanished continent, 
stretching across the south side of the North Pacific Ocean. 

Such is Darwin's theory, which, however, can scarcely be applied with any 
probability to all the oceanic lands girdled by coral reefs. "Wherever the rocky 
pedestals supporting the superstructures of living polypi themselves consist of 
calcareous secretions to any great depth, there can be no doubt that subsidence has 
really taken place. But verifications have hitherto been made only at a limited 
number of points, and in the absence of direct observations It would be rash to do 
more than regard subsidence as very probable wherever the outer walls of the 
coralline Islands plunge rapidly — as, however, they rarely do — Into abysmal depths. 
Thus near Enderbury, In the Phoenix Archipelago, the soundings reveal 1,800 
fathoms within 3 miles of the shore, 900 fathoms at 1,400 yards from Danger 
Island, near Vanikoro, while one of the reefs at Tahiti Indicates a seaward slope of 
72 degrees. 

On the other hand, observations made in the vicinity of certain coralline islands 
show that at the foot of an escarpment less than 200 feet high, there stretch vast 
platforms where fragments of volcanic origin have been found scattered amongst 
crumbling blocks of coral. In this case it is qiilte possible that eruptive cones 
eroded by the waves to a slight depth below the marine surface may have served 
as foundations for the coral-builders, or else that their structures have been raised 
on rocks entirely formed by other organisms working at considerable depths. But 
many protracted observations must still be made before the diverse coralline Islands 
can be classified according to their origin and history. Several groups, such as 
the Low Archipelago, Fiji, the Pelew, Solomon, and Tonga Islands, supposed by 



Darwin to occuiiy a zone of subsidence, are on the contrary now known to belong 
to an area of ujjheaval. 

Oceanic Flora. 

An oceanic basin coTering over half of the planetary surface from Behring 
Strait to the Antarctic regions must naturallj^ present everj' gradation of climate, 
and consequently also a great diversity of animal and vegetable life. In the 
neighbourhood of the continents the oceanic islands partake more or less of the 
adjacent floras and faunas. Nevertheless the Eastern Archipelago is the only 
insular group which can be regarded as forming part of the Old World from the 
standpoint of its natural history. The Indian flora, scarcely arrested by the inter- 
vening shallow waters, continued to advance from island to island towards the 
south-east. In this insular region it has even developed a marvellous wealth of 
forms, rivalled only in some few privileged districts of the neighbouring main- 

Thanks to the periodical return of the monsoons, the currents and counter- 
currents, the Indian flora has also spread to the clusters of small equatorial groups, 
some of which contain an extremely limited nvimbor of endemic plants. On the 
surprising resemblance presented by the native vegetation of remote islands 
certain naturalists base a strong argument in favour of a former vast expansion 
of oceanic lands, which are at present broken into a thousand scattered fragments. 

But while widely separated lands offer a great analogy in their plant life, 
others again lying in close proximity often present the most startling contrasts. 
Thus Madagascar possesses an independent flora, and in this respect is by no means 
an African island, as might be supposed from its geographical position. More 
than half of the local species hitherto discovered are absolutely indigenous. The 
volcanic Mascarenhas group also possess such a large number of peculiar forms, 
that these islands may be regarded as so manj^ distinct botanical stations. 

In the Pacific Ocean the Hawaiian Archipelago also constitutes a separate 
vegetable zone ; of all tropical insular groups it jDossesses the relatively largest 
mmiber of endemic plants. In the Galapagos group also more than half of the 
species are of local origin. Although this arcliipelago lies near the American 
mainland, and is exposed to the direct influence of the equatorial current setting 
from the coast of Ecuador, each of its six islands to some extent even constitutes a 
special centre. Thickets of plants belonging to a single genus and growing on 
analogous soils are nevertheless formed of different species in the different 
members of this remarkable group. 

The flora of the AustraKan continent is one of the most characteristic on the 
globe, although its northern and north-western shores approach close to the islands 
forming part of the Indian vegetable zone. The contrast is very marked between 
York peninsula in north Australia and the south coast of New Guinea, yet the 
shallow intervening strait is studded with islands, by which plants might with 
apparent ease have migrated to and fro. Nor is Australia altogether destitute of 
species of Indian origin, for in the forests of the north-western regions no less 

# .^1'.' k 





than a hundred different trees are found which have come from the Asiatic 
continent. But the typical forms are the same throughout the whole of Australia, 
where the vegetation everywhere jDresents a great uniformity of aspect. In 
the woodlands the prevailing tj'pes are those of the eucalyptus, acacias, casuarinas, 
and trees with slightly developed foliage or leaves pointing vertically downwards. 
The open stepj^es are overgrown chiefly with diverse kinds of scrub and brush- 

The Australian indigenous flora is extremely rich in forms, in this respect 
yielding only to that of the Cape regions. New Caledonia, although lying 800 
miles from the coast of Queensland, offers in its vegetation a surprising resem- 
blance to that of Australia ; yet the distance is too great to assume any consider- 
able interchange of species. On the other hand the New Hebrides, lying 
immediately to the east and north-east of New Caledonia, are connected with the 
Indian zone by their luxuriant tropical flora. 

Norfolk Island, also in the East Australian seas, is distinguished by its endemic 
vegetation, which includes one of the finest species of araucarla, a palm, some 
thistles and tree-ferns. It forms a transition between Australia and New Zealand, 
which differ altogether in the character of their respective floras. According to 
Grisebach, that of New Zealand shows more afiiuity with the Araucanian of South 
America than with that of the neighbouring continent. Its evergreen woodlands 
are the richest in the world in tree-ferns, and consequently give a better idea 
than any others of the aspect of nature in the geological epochs when the great 
crj'ptogamous plants prevailed. But on the whole this flora is comparatively poor, 
which is doubtless due to the isolated position of the archipelago in the South Sea. 
Notwithstanding its proximity to the Chilian seaboard, the island of Juan-Fernandez 
is connected with the New Zealand zone through the high projiortion of its tree- 

The impoverished floras of the oceanic islands south of the forty-fifth degree of 
latitude scarcely deserve mention when compared with those of the corresponding 
latitudes in the northern hemisphere. Although lying as far from the south as do 
Havre and Cherbourg from the north pole, Kerguelen Island possesses only eighteen 
flowering plants, or about five times less than Spitzbergen. This poverty is due 
partly to its arid soil and isolated position, partly also perhaps to the extreme 
uniformity of the annual climate and to the deficient simlight in those foggy 
Austral regions. The lands lying nearer the antarctic snows still jdosscss a few 
stunted growths, although passing na\'igators might suppose their rockbound 
shores absolutely destitute of vegetation. The first explorers who ventured into 
the antarctic seas speak with a sort of awe and horror of these dreary wastes, and 
endless succession of bare cliffs, sands, and snows with peaks lit up by watery sun- 
beams or wrapped in mists, according as the clouds gathered or were dispersed 
by the boisterous winds. " Cursed lands ! " they exclaimed, " abode of everlasting 
Q-loom ! " 

D 3 


Oceanic Fauna. 

The oceanic -world has also its special faunas, although their distribution presents 
the greatest contrast, according to the direction of the atmospheric and marine 
currents, the greater or less isolation and accessibility of the insular groups. The 
seabirds of strong wing and keen vision, who sweep over the waters for hundreds 
of miles at a stretch, have a very wide range, limited north and south only by 
the climatic conditions. They accomplish long migrations as easily as the fish, 
and are able to spread from island to island, like the plants whose germs resist for 
months the action of the marine water. But apart from these aquatic fowl, who 
dominate the aerial spaces, most of the local animals are confined to their respective 
insular domains, their migration from one region to another being mainly due to 
the conscious or unwilling intervention of man, or else to the facilities occasionally 
presented by geological changes in the distribution of land and water. In no 
other way does it seem possible to explain the existence of species common to 
many remote islands as well as to these lands and the neighbouring continents. 
On the other hand, forms peculiar to a single island or archijjelago must be 
regarded as of strictly local origin or development. However they may have 
reached their present habitation, here their evolution into distinct forms has been 
accomplished. But such characteristic types are chiefly confined to the lower 
members of the animal kingdom. 

Madagascar, which almost ranks as a continent in virtue of its peculiar flora, is 
no less original in its fauna, which with one or two exceptions appears to be almost 
entirely local. The Mascarenhas also constitute an independent centre, which till 
recently comprised some birds badly equipped for the vital struggle, and conse- 
quently destined soon to disappear after the arrival of man. 

Notwithstanding its proximity to the Indian and Indo-Chinese peninsulas, the 
Eastern Archipelago cannot be regarded as a simple zoological dependency of the 
mainland. On the contrary, it appears to be itself the centre of dispersion for 
nimierous forms, the Malay peninsula and Indo-China having apparently received 
from the archipelago as many immigrants as they have sent thither. If the 
elephant, rhinoceros, and tiger have reached Sumatra from the continent, Borneo, 
or at least the region of which this island is a fragment, has given in exchange 
the orang-utan and several other peculiar insular forms. So rich is Malaj'sia in 
large mammals that this region should be regarded as still forming part of the 
Asiatic world. 

The parting line between the Malaysian and Australian zoological zones 
passes to the east of Celebes, which island forms a little centre of its own, very 
distinct in many respects from all its neighbours. 

Australia, the home of the marsupials, presents in its fauna, as in its flora, a 
character of antiquity which has led some geologists to regard it as one of those 
regions whose surfaces have never been re-moidded or seriously modified b}^ 
natural agencies. Nevertheless, comparatively recent Tertiary formations are now 
known to occupy a large extent of the continent. The marsupials, unknown in the 


Old World except ia the Indo-Chinese lands, which in this respect may be 
considered a dependency of Australasia, are here represented by no less than 
thirteen genera and over a hundred species. On the other hand, there is a total 
absence of apes, pachyderms, and riuninants, while the carnivora, rodents, and 
edentata are far from numerous. 

In its lower fauna Australia is no less original, its birds and Lizards being quite 
distinct from those of the Asiatic continent. New Zealand also forms a separate 
zone, which has long been destitute of any characteristic mammals except a rat, 
and perhaps one species of otter. On the other hand, it possessed two remarkable 
families of bu'ds, the apteryx and dinornis, which, Kke the dodo of Mauritius, have 
perished since the arrival of man. New Zealand had no less than fifteen species 
of these birds, which belong to the ostrich family. 

Farther east the Polynesian islands are completely destitute of mammals, beyond 
some small species of bats and rodents. Reptiles are also rare ; while bii'ds, thanks 
to their power of flight and natation, have been distributed in considerable numbers 
throughout the archipelagoes. In the same way man himself, passing in his light 
outriggers beyond the straits and broader marine channels, has gradually colonised 
nearly all the islands of Pol}Tiesia. 

Inhabitants of the Oceanic Regions. 

Before the arrival of the Europeans, the oceanic islanders had already estab- 
lished communication with each other, and long migrations had taken place, in 
one direction towards Madagascar, in the other towards the remote eastern islands 
of the Pacific. The populations of diverse origin occupying the Eastern Archipelago, 
who are connected either by affinity or by commercial relations ^^'ith the people of 
South-east Asia, have long played the part of agents in promoting the intercourse 
that has been maintained from one extremitj' of the ocean to the other. The 
natives of Madagascar are at least partly related to the Malays of the Eastern 
Archipelago, who have gradually spread their domain from island to island east- 
wards, everywhere intermingling with the aborigines, or else colonising unoccupied 
lands. Nearly all the idioms spoken throughout this vast domain, from Madagascar 
to Easter Island, from the African to the American waters, are regarded as more or 
less closely related members of the one great Malayo-Polynesian linguistic family. 
Nevertheless the extreme branches of this widespread family present profound 
differences, while from the connection must be altogether excluded all the 
Australian and extract Tasmanian languages, and many also current amongst the 
Papuan and Negrito inhabitants of New Guinea, the Philippines, the Andaman, 
Nicobar, and a few other groups. 

But while their common speech attests a general movement of migration 
throughout the whole extent of the Indian and Pacific Oceans, the marked contrast 
in their phj'sical appearance indicates such a great diversity of origin, that many 
writers have grouped the oceanic populations in fimdamentally distinct brown or 
dark races. But however this be, such physical differences between the inhabitants 


of the various insular groups, or of uplands and lowlands, may be largely explained 
by the intermingling of the two streams of ethnical migration. While one great 
wave gradually advanced along the line of the equator between Africa and America, 
another stream set in the transverse direction, between the south-east extremity 
of Asia and the Australian continent. Like the marine currents themselves, 
these waves of human migration intermingled or intersected each other in their 
onward movement across the oceanic lands. To the stream which followed the 
direction of the equator was due the diffusion of a common form of speech, while 
the transverse current passing from hemisphere to hemisphere across the narrow 
marine gulfs and inlets brought from the Asiatic mainland the populations differing 
in appearance and usages, and gradually displaced the different cultures. 

The various dark populations at present scattered over the oceanic islands 
originally followed the route of the Malay j^eninsula, possibly also that of land_s 
now vanished or flooded by the shallow waters of the Java Sea. But the same 
highway was afterwards taken by the Malays and other kindred people, by whom 
the dark races were displaced, absorbed, or driven to remote islands and upland 
regions of difficiilt access. The Samangs and Sakais of the Malay peninsula, the 
Andamanese Islanders, the Negritos of the Philippines, the New Guinea Papuans, 
and the Australians, although for the most part greatly differing amongst them- 
selves, are generally regarded as belonging originally to the same group as the 
black jjopulations of India — Santhals, Gonds, Kohls, Mundahs, and others. But how 
profoundly the primitive type must have become modified in this wide area during 
the course of ages, when the emigrants advancing southwards dwelt under diverse 
climates, exposed to difficulties of diverse nature, compelled to modify their manner 
of life in a thousand ways, brought into friendly or hostile contact with distinct 
peoples, and intermingling in different proportions with all these new elements. 

Wc arc separated only by a period of two thousand years from the dawn of 
historic times in the Eastern Archipelago ; yet this comparatively short period 
suffices to show the profound influence exercised on the southern maritime peoples 
by the civilisation introduced from Asia. At the beginning of this era the Hindus 
were the teachers of the popidatious of Java, Bali and Sumatra. Their influence is 
known to have even reached Borneo, and their far-reaching activity is well attested 
by nimierous moniunents, local names, writing systems, religious legends, and 
social visages. The Arabs who succeeded the Hindus, both as instructors and 
promoters of commercial intercourse, also commanded a large measure of success 
in this insular region, where many millions at present profess the Mohammedan 
religion, and where even Arabic family names are current from the Comoros to 

On the other hand, the action of the Chinese has been less direct and of more 
limited extent. They keep more aloof from the natives, and have never attempted 
any religious propaganda like the missionaries from India and Arabia ; yet in 
several districts the Chinese constitute the substratum of the population. The race 
has been incessantly renewed by the constant stream of immigration maintained 
for many generations from the Celestial Empire. 


At present the preponderating influence has passed to the peoples of Western 
Europe. All these lands inhabited by Malays, Negritos, Papuans, ^laoris, and other 
Polj'nesians, belong poKtically to one or another European power, or are already 
regarded as coming within their legitimate sphere of action or that of the United 
States. Thus like Africa, the oceanic world is almost entirely parcelled out amongst 
the Western nations. Commanding a thousand marine highways, including that 
through the Isthmus of Suez created by themselves, these nations have far out- 
stripped their Hindu, Arab, and Chinese forerunners in rapidity of action, material 
strength, and dominant civilising influences, while still increasing their hold of 
these regions at the ver)- antipodes of the European world. 

In this political, commercial, and ethnical expansion of the cultured peoples of 
the West, the foremost place belongs unquestionably to the Anglo-Saxon race, the 
British and American branches of which seem destined jointly to absoi-b the whole 
of the Pacific insular lands. The yoimg but vigorous colonies of Australia and 
New Zealand may be said already to constitute an oceanic Britain, forming a sort 
of equilibrium with that of the Northern hemisphere, and serving as a sure founda- 
tion for the futui-e spread of the English language, social and political institutions, 
throughout the Eastern seas, from Auckland Island to the Sandwich Archipelago, 
from Torres Strait to Easter Island. 

The great ethnical divisions of the people occupying the oceanic region 
correspond in a general way with the geographical distribution of the insular 
groups themselves. Madagascar forms a little world of its own, where the Malay 
imm i grants, and the aborigines of African descent have already been merged in a 
single nationality with absolute uniformity of speech. The Eastern Archipelago and 
the Philipjnnes are mainly inhabited by the Malays, closely related to those of the 
Asiatic peninsula to which they give their name. But amongst them still sui'vive 
isolated communities of different origin, dark and dwarfish peoples by many 
supposed to be of Dravidian or Kolarian stock. The Pelew, Marianne, Caroline, 
and Marshall groujis stretching north of the equator and of the Melanesian lands, 
and to which the collective term Micronesia has been fittingly applied, offer a 
mixture of races constituting an ethnical transition between the Malays, the Papuans, 
and the natives of the smaller insular dependencies of Japan, Farther south the 
expression Melanesia, indicating the black complexion of the great bulk of the 
inhabitants, has been similarly ajjplied to Papuasia, or New Guinea, ^vith the adjoin- 
ing groups of New Britain, Now Ireland, the Solomon Islands, New Caledonia, and 
the New Hebrides. 

Till recently the Australian continent also belonged to an aboriginal dark race 
of homogeneous type, with scarcely a trace of Malay blood except here and there on 
the north and north-west coastlands. Lastly all the eastern islands, from Hawaii 
to New Zealand, constitute the watery domain of the large brown Polijnesian race, 
which also preserves a remarkable imiformity of type, except in Fiji and a few 
other places, where it has been modified by intermixture with the aboriginal 
Melanesian element. 


Reunion — Maukitius — Rodrigues. 

HE term Mascarcnhas, origiually applied iu 1513 by the Portuguese 
navigator, Pedro de Mascarenhas, to the single island of Reunion, 
has gradually been extended to the whole group, which although 
geologically distract, presents great uniformity in its outlines, 
climate, productions, and history. Long united politically under 
the sovereignty of Franee, the different members of the archipelago still remain 
sister islands, at least in the homogeneous character of their white populations. 
After the conquest, however. Reunion alone was restored to France, England 
retaining possession of Mauritius, the most important if not the largest, together 
with its natural dependency, Rodi-igues. They have jointly a superficial area of 
1,600 square miles, and a population in 1888 of nearly 560,000. This gives a 
density of 350 to the square mile, although the hiUy districts are mostly unin- 

The two chief islands, of nearly equal size and configuration, are irregular 
oval cones of volcanic origin rising from great depths to considerable elevations 
above the surface. Reunion, the larger and higher, has alone a still active crater ; 
but in economic importance it is far surpassed by Mauritius, the north-eastern 
island, which has the advantage of a natural haven serving as a convenient 
harbour of refuge in those stormy waters. This port has consequently become 
the centre of an active export trade, and the headquarters of various industrial 
enterprises in Madagascar and other parts of the Indian Ocean. 

Being exposed to the same regidar south-east trade winds and land breezes, and 
equally well watered on the windward side, both islands are subject to the same 
climatic conditions. Thus the mean annual rainfall in Mauritius is about 150 inches, 
in Reunion 160 to 165 inches, while both are frequently devastated by the same 
destructive cyclones. These tremendous hurricanes, which are developed between 
5° and 10° S. latitude, sweep over the Indian Ocean in an oblique dii-ection towards 
the south-west. In the Mascarenhas waters, or farther west near Madagascar, 
they are deflected to the south and again to the south-east, thus taking the opposite 
direction to the regidar trades. Although occurring at every season, they are rare 



in winter, and most frequent between December and April, but especially to be 
dreaded in Februarj', when the waters are churned up, giving to the seas the 
appearance of a boiling caldron. Dui'ing the storm of February 26th, 1860, 
many vessels foundered, and cargoes to the value of £120,000 were swallowed up 
by the waves, while tweutj-- three thousand native huts were swept away by the 
still more terrific gale of 1868. Occasionally huge blocks of coral are torn from 
the reefs and borne by the raging waters far into the interior, looking as if hurled 
across the land by some tremendous submarine explosion. 

Flora and Fauna. 

Owing to their oceanic origin the Mascarenhas have an independent flora and 
fauna, differing not only from those of the Asiatic and African continents, but also 
from those of Madagascar and neighbouring islands. It is no longer possible to 
determine the exact nature of the local flora before the arrival of the first settlers, 
as since that time most of the forests have been cleared and cultivated plants intro- 
duced, while some three hundred wild species have supplanted the indigenous 
forms. Except the citron, Eeunion appears to possess no fruit-tree peculiar to 
itself. Nevertheless botanists still enimierate over five hundred endemic plants 
in the Mascarenhas and Seychelles. Of the forms common to other regions, the 
Asiatic are more numerous than those of African origin. Of twenty-two varieties 
of the pandanus, these islands possess as many as twenty, and of these nine 
are peculiar to Mauritius, four to Ileunion, three to the Seychelles, and two to 
Rodrigues. The large proportion of ferns and orchids imparts to the vegetation 
of the Mascarenhas a distinct place among insular floras. 

Most naturalists admit that all the mammals at present foimd in the island — a 
Madagascar lemurian and centetes, a wild cat, a hare, some rats and mice — have 
been introduced by the colonists. Some lizards, snakes, and frogs also occur ; 
while the land tui-tles, fonnerly so nimierous that they "paved" the beach, have 
been exterminated by the fishermen. The deer, still met in Mauritius but extinct 
in Reunion, were introduced by the Portuguese, and efforts have recently been 
made to acclimatise the ostrich. Strange to say, the islet of Ronde, about 16 
miles north of Mauritius, forms a separate biological kingdom, possessing one 
peculiar species of cabbage-palm, some lizards, two snakes, and relatively more 
monocotyledonous plants than any other region in the world. 

These islands were formerly noted for their large wingless birds, such as the 
dodo and the aphanapterix, the " solitary " {pezo2>haps solitaria), the giant water- 
fowl larger than a man, a species of lori, as well as many others, the non-fossilised 
remains of which have recently been discovered by Clarke in Maiu'itius. But a 
few decades after the arrival of the Europeans all these helpless birds, apparently 
dating from the Miocene epoch, had already disappeared, falling an easy prey to 
the rats, dogs, cats, and pigs of the settlers. Quite recently the aledorcenas nitidis- 
sima, a species of pigeon, has become extinct in Mauritius, just as the akcforcenas 
rodericana, another variety of the same genus, had already died out in Rodrigues. 



Like the Seyclielles and neighbouring insular groups, the Mascarenhas were 
completely uninhabited till the year 1616, when Pronis, governor of Fort Dauphin 
in Madagascar, transj)orted twelve mutineers to Reunion. But these, as well as 
a few French and Malagasy who established themselves at St. Paul in 1655, soon 
disappeared ; and the first permanent settlement, consisting of two Frenchmen and a 
few Negro slaves, was delayed to the year 1663. Living a free life in the midst of 
abundance, with no enemies to fight or governors to oppress them, the little settle- 
ment prospered, villages were founded in the midst of plantations, and trade was 
opened with the mother country. Then came the French East India Company, 
which monopolised the commerce of Bourbon (Reunion), while Cerne was seized 
by the Dutch and by them renamed Mauritius in 1598. But the Dutch settlement 
having been abandoned, Mauritius was occupied by the French of Boui'bon in 1715. 
These early settlers, mostly from Normaudj', Brittanj^ and Sautonge, were the 
ancestors of most of the white populations which now inhabit the Mascarenhas and 
Seychelles to the number of about eighty thousand. 

These islands of the Indian Ocean offer a remarkable instance of tropical lands 
where the European race has succeeded in establishing itself, although later 
intermixture makes it impossible now to determine the real proportion of whites 
amongst the present miscellaneous elements. But the French Creole families are 
known to be very fruitful, averaging about two hundred and fifty children to one 
thousand married women, or one-third more than in France. 

But the Europeans, including some English since the occupation of Mauritius, 
Rodrigues, and the Seychelles by Great Britain, constitute only a minority of the 
present population, which comprises the descendants of Malagasy, Kafir, and other 
African slaves emancipated by the French Republic. This measure, however, was 
successfidly resisted by the planters, and the blacks did not acquire their indepen- 
dence till about the middle of the present centmy. Although they are greatly 
inferior in number to the rest of the inhabitants, their French Creole jargon has 
become the common medium of intercourse for all — French, English, Chinese, 
Arabs, Malays, and Hindus. 

The abolition of slavery obliged the planters to introduce coolies from China, 
Malaysia, India, and especially Malabar, the term " Malabar " being now commonly 
applied to all the Hindus of whatever origin. Every precaution was taken to 
protect the freedom of these coolies, but on most of the plantations the old treat- 
ment of the Negro slaves continued to be appHed to the hirelings. The immigra- 
tion of the Indians, now more numerous in Mauritius than all the other elements 
combined, has also been carried out in violation of the natural laws. Owing to 
the scarcity of women but few families coidd be established, and polyandria became 
the rule on the plantations. The few children of these households were greatly 
neglected, and the excessive infant mortality had to be compensated by continuous 
fresh importations from China and India. To the Chinese was due the introduc- 
tion of leprosy, to the Hindus the so-called " Bombay fever," which in 1866-8 


swept away seventy-two thousand souls, or one-fourth of the popuhition of Mauritius. 
And although these epidemics have decreased, the general poverty is greater than 
ever, owing chiefly to the rapid growth of the population, in which the Hindus arc 
steadily acquiring the predominance over aU other sections of the community, in 
wealth and influence as well as iu numbers. 


Although forming a link in the great semicircular chain of islands, Mauritius 
appears never to have been connected with any other land, but to have been 
independently upheaved. Consisting entirely of basaltic rocks, it is probably older 
than Reunion, its coasts being much more indented, its hills more eroded, and its 
craters more obliterated. The great central mass is encircled by plains of reddish 
clay formerly clothed with dense forests, but now laid out in plantations and gardens 
and studded with villages. The central plateau is dominated by the Piton du 
Midi (2,000 feet), consisting exclusively of horizontally disposed columnar basalt, 
but exceeded in altitude by the Black River peak, cvdminating point of the island 
(2,730 feet). Above the picturesque hills in the northern district rises the remark- 
able obelisk- shaped Pieter Both (2,700 feet) sui-mounted by an enormous globular 
block, which adventui'ous cHmbers have occasionally scaled by means of ropes and 

The periphery is encircled by fringing reefs and islets with here and there a 
few navigable channels giving access to the harbours. Cliffs of marine origin 
now rising above the surface, show that Mauritius has undergone a change of level 
since its first upheaval. La Ronde, La Plate, Le Coin de Mire, and other islets 
near the north coast are covered with refuse which attest the former existence of 
an active volcano in these waters. 

Mauritius has become almost completely disafforested, all the magnificent 
timber, matted together with a network of creepers, as described by Bcrnardin de 
Saint-Pierre, having entirely disappeared. These clearances have had the usual 
result of disturbing the discharge of the streams, which are alternately flooded and 
nearly dry watercourses. At the foot of the hills are also formed temporary 
meres, whose deadly exhalations are diffused far and wide. The droughts are 
longer, the rains more sudden, more copious and irregidar, and extensive tracts 
formerly under cultivation are now barren -wastes. 

The only large town is the capital. Port Louis, on the east or leeward side, 
with a haven sheltered by coral reefs, and defended by forts and batteries. 
Founded by Matie de la Bourdonnais in 1735, to replace an older port on the 
south-east coast, Port Louis has gradually monopolised the whole trade of the 
island. But although presenting a pleasant aspect towards the sea, it lacks the 
splendour and elegance one would expect to find in one of the chief commercial 
centres in the Indian Ocean, with a population of over seventy thousand. Many 
of the suburbs, and even some of the busy quarters, being occupied by the Hindus 
and Malagasy, have a poverty-stricken and neglected appearance, while much of 



its former trade has been diverted elsewhere by the opening of the Suez Canal. 
Nevertheless, the exchanges still average considerably over £5,500,000 yearly; the 
port is always crowded with shipping, and connected by regular steam service 
with Europe through the Suez Canal, as well as with Madagascar and Reunion. 

Fig. 12. — Mabeitius. 
Scale t : 750,000. 

b.Tsb oF Oreen 

The staple produce and exports are sugar and rum, the island possessing over 
two hundred and fifty sugar mills, and forty distilleries, yielding on an average 
from fifty to eighty thousand tons of sugar, and five thousand gallons of rum, 
worti altogether from £160,000 to £200,000. Other articles of export are vanilla. 

h • 

, J 







^"^'^'eRSlTy of ILLINOIS. 


3H.I JO 



aloe fibre, and cocoanut oil, the imp orts being European wares, rice from Bombay, 
maize and cattle from ITadagascar. 

The whole island is intersected by railways connecting the capital with the 
chief groups of plantations and residences of the wealthy classes. On the north- 
east Kne, six miles from the capital, lie the sugar works of Pamplemousse, and close 
by the famous garden, founded in 1768 by Poivre, for the cultivation of tropical 
plants. Here are aome of the finest avenues in the world, and the place is still better 

Fig. 13. — Poet Locis. 
Scale 1 : 125,000. 

640 Feet and 

known as the scene of Bernardin de Saint-Pierre's " Paul and Virginia. " To the 
north-east lies the reef-fringed isle of Amber, where was wrecked the Saint-Giran, 
as related by this charming writer. Such also is the power of the popular imagina- 
tion, that travellers are shown the very graves of the two lovers. 

The railway running from Saint-Louis towards the south-east traverses the 
"Wilhelm's Plains, where Curepipe, lying about the geometrical centre of the island 
and 1,800 feet above the sea, has become the chief health resort in Mauritius. 
The experimental tea plantation of this district contained in 1887 over twelve 


thousand plants in good condition. The south-east line terminates on the east 
coast at MaJii-bourfj, marking the site of one of the earliest Dutch settlements. 

Mauritius is a crown colon}', whose governor, as well as the five members of the 
executive council, is named by the Queen. According to the modified constitution 
of 1884-5, eight of the twenty-seven members of the legislative council are ex-officm 
members, nine are appointed by the governor, and ten elected by citizens enjoying 
a certain income. The defensive forces consisted in 1887 of four hundred and 
forty-three men, and half of the military expenditure is defrayed by the home 
Government. The legislation, partly French and partly English, is extremely 
complicated, affording ample scojje for endless litigation, to the great benefit of the 
lawyers. Although there is no State religion, both the Catholic and Anglican 
Churches receive State aid, the latter out of proportion to its numbers. Grants are 
also given to a certain number of schools, which, however, are scarcely numerous 
enough to afford primary instruction to one-fom'th of the children. Mauritius 
possesses several scientific and literary institutions, and a considerable number of 
periodicals, as many as six daily papers appearing in the capital. The revenue, 
although exceeding £700,000, scarcely covers the expenditure, and there is a public 
debt of over £800,000. The official currencj' is the Indian rupee of ten to the 
pound sterling, and the metrical system is obligatory since 1878. 

With the exception of Sokotra, all the English islands in the Indian Ocean, 
including even the Chagos and other groups belonging geographically to India, 
depend administratively on Mauritius. 


The largest of the Mascarenhas, officiall}' designated as " He de la Reunion," 
but also still known by its old name of Bourbon, presents a smaller extent of 
arable land and is consequently less densely peopled than Mauritius. The surface 
consists chiefly of hills and steeply escarped plateaux, fringed by a narrow belt of 
plains and gently inclined slopes. Hence most of the central parts are nearly 
uninhabited, the population being confined mainly to a restricted zone of coast- 
lands. But although it has preserved its romantic aspect. Reunion, like Mauritius, 
has lost its primeval woodlands, which formerly descended to the water's edge, and 
earned for the island the title of " Eden." 

The main axis is disposed, not north-oast and south-west like that of Mauritius, 
but uorth-west and south-east, and in this direction are disposed all the higher 
crests. At the entrance of the gorges occur a few narrow alluvial or shingly plains, 
but elsewhere the escari^meuts rise everywhere abruptly from the water's edge to 
the plateaux occupying the interior of the island. In the central parts, where the 
land has been eroded by the running waters, the upland plains exceed 5,000 feet 
in mean height, the partiug line between the two slopes rising in some places even to 
an altitude of over C,500 feet, and culminating in the Piton des Neiges, about 
10,000 feet. Mount Cimandef ("Bonnet Pointu"), a regular pyramid forming a 
northern shoulder of this piton, although only 7,300 feet, seems to be the 



highest point of the island when seen from the north-'n'est between St. Denis 
and St. Paul. 

Towards the eastern extremity the erxiptive lavas have developed two masses, 
whose cre.sts exceed 7,600 and 8,000 feet. Here is situated the semicircular 
Grand Enclos, whose two outer ramparts stretching seawards completeh' enclose 
the Grand Brule volcano. The cirque, averaging from 800 to 1,000 feet, is 
perhaps the most regular formation of this kind in the whole world. It encloses a 
space of about 40 square miles in extent, the encircling walls having a total 
length of 28 or 30 miles. Farther west occur similar formations, and in recent 

Fi,?. 14.— The Gean-d Bcfxt. 

Scale 1 : 100,000. 

years a second "enclosure" has been developed within the first round about the 
central crater. 

Here eruptions are still frequent ; towards the end of the last centiuy thej- 
occurred at least twice a year, and between 1800 and 1860 as mauj- as twenty 
copious discharges were recorded by M. Maillard. The outbursts are at times 
accompanied by showers of ashes and other igneous matter, such as those slender 
threads of obsidian which the Hawaii islanders call the " hair of the goddess 
Pele." In many parts of the Grand Bride roofs of hardened scoriae conceal the 
hollow passages through which the Hquid lava streams were formerly discharged, 
and these incrustations, which easily give way, are a source of great danger to 
Tuiguarded wayfarers on the flanks of the volcano. 

Indications of upheaval to a height of 250 feet have been observed on the 


soutli-west side of Reunion, where old coralliae beaches are seen rising above the 
jiresent coastline. But owing to the great depth of the surrounding waters, coral 
reefs, such as. those that completely encircle Mauritius, are somewhat rare on the 
shores of the sister island. 

Besides its symmetrical volcanic formations. Reunion is also remarkable for the 
wonderful cirques formed by the erosive action of the tropical rains. On the west 
side occur three of these vast funnel-shaped basins with intervening narrow 
ridges radiating from the central mass of the Gros Morne, the whole being thus 
disposed " like a three-leaved shamrock." These deep chasms — Cilaos, Mafate, 
and Salazie — sources rcsjoectivelj^ of the rivers St. Etienne, Galets, and Mat, 
have each their thermal waters, of which the most efficacious is that of Mafate, 
which abounds in sulj^hur. In the neighbourhood rises the isolated mountain 
mass of the Piton d'Enchein, with a romantic lakelet at its foot. 

In their general disposition the insular streams present the character of Alpine 
torrents, destructive in their upper courses, and farther down depositing the debris 
produced by their erosive action. The vastness of these erosions may be judged 
from the fact that the Salazie cirque alone has been excavated to the extent of no 
less than 3,000,000 ciibic feet. The process of denudation is still going on, and 
even Increasing, owing to the destruction of the forests on the mountain slopes, the 
hand of man thus tcndmg to transform a naturally fertile Island Into a barren 

The dwarf bamboo {hainhusa alpina), locally known by the name of "calumet," 
forms on the hillsides a sharjjly defined vegetable zone between the altitudes of 
4,500 and 5,000 feet. Farther up the plateaux and higher summits are partly 
clothed with the hubertla, a large shrub with gnarled twisted stem, which throws 
off numerous smooth branches bearing large clusters of yellow blossom. 

As in Miiui'itius, the chief Industry Is the cultivation of the sugar-cane, combined 
with sugar refining and the distillation of rum. Since the wars of the Empire 
the sugar plantations have gradually supplanted all other cultivated plants on the 
coastland ujo to an altitude of from 2,800 to over 3,000 feet, jdelding an average 
yearly crop of thirty thousand to forty thousand tons. Formerly the annual crop 
was estimated at sixty thousand tons, but this industry has suffered much from 
various forms of blight as well as from the competition of beetroot sugar. During 
the last century coffee was the staple product in Bourbon, where a native variety 
{cqffca Mauriciana) had been discovered, but at present the only important coffee 
plantations are those of St. Leu and St. Pierre. The clove, which formerly 
contributed to enrich the island, has ceased to be grown, but on the other hand 
vanilla has become one of the chief articles of export, the yield amounting In 1887 
to about a hundred and fifty thousand pounds more than that of any other colony, 
and alone sufficient to supply the whole of Europe. Neither tea, the vine, nor 
cotton are grown, but cinchona has lately been acclimatised, and in 1888 as many 
as 20,700 of this valuable plant were already flourishing In the Island. 

But, as in Maiiritlus, the development of these plantations has been attended 
by a corresponding reduction in the growth of alimentary plants, and notwith- 

4t ■>*«#. .^, 







standing its fertility, the soil no longer yields sufficient corn, vegetables, or fruits 
for the local demand. Consequently these provisions, as well as cattle and other 
live stock, have now to be imported, chiefly from Madagascar, and rice for the 
coolies from Bengal. The extension of the plantations, owned by a few great 
proprietors, has also had the effect of driving the old settlers from their small 
holdings, which can no longer be worked profitably, and compelling them to swell 
the number of idle hands in the large towns. The great landowners have thus 

Fig. 15.— The Theee Cikques. 
Scale 1 : 200,000. 

gradually absorbed everything except a few ilcttcs or isolated plots in the upland 

The competition of European wares has hitherto prevented the development of 
any local manufacturing industries. No attempt has even been made to utilise 
the inexhaustible deposits of titanic iron thrown up by the waves on the beach at 
St. Leu, although these sands contain a mean proportion of over fifty per cent. 
of pure metal. Reunion has a small commercial fleet, but nearly all the foreign 

VOL, XIV, p 



trade is carried on under the French flag, and especially by the steamers plying 
regularly between the Mascarenhas and Madagascar. 

Topography of Reunion. 

Sf. TJciiis, present capital of the island, is not the oldest French settlement, 
having been preceded by St. Paid, founded by pioneers from Fort Dauphin 
(Madagascar), on the north-west coast. It occupies the northern extremity of the 
island between two small rivers, and is a fine European city of some forty thousand 
inhabitants, well laid out with regular streets and some handsome public buildings 

Pis'. Hi. — The Maeina of St. Denis. 

such as the governor's palace, town hall, barracks, hospital, lyceum, and museum. 
A large space in the very heart of the town is occupied by a beautiful botanic 
garden. But St. Denis, lying on the windward side of the island, is exposed to 
the full fury of the cyclonic gales, and as it possesses no large sheltered harbour, 
the shipping, on the approach of these hurricanes, is obliged to quit the open road- 
stead and take refuge on the high seas. Nevertheless a brisk trade is carried on, 
especially in sugar, of which nearly twenty thousand tons were exported in 1886. 

Till recently the safest, or rather the least dreaded, seaport on the west side of 
the island was Sf. Paid, lying " under the wind " some 28 miles from the 
capital, on a semicircular bay protected on the north by the triangular i^eninsula 





of Pohite des Galetn. But this place oifers few facilities for trade, and is moreover 
frequently exposed to the so-called " vent de St. Gilles," a sort of back-current 
from the regular monsoon, sweeping round from the east to the west side of the 
island. A harbour of refuge, however, has lately been constructed at a cost of no 
less than £2,700,000, to the north of St. Paul, under the shelter of the Pointe 
des Galets. The basin, which is accessible to the largest vessels frequenting these 
waters, has an extent of over forty acres, with a depth of 26 feet. This port is 

Fig. 17.— St. Pieree. 
Scale 1 : 12.000. 

conveniently situated towards the centre of gravity of the productive parts of the 
island, where it is least exposed to the violence of the cyclones. Some of the 
blocks used in constructing the sea-waUs weigh as much as a hundred and twenty 

South of St. Paul follow the half-deserted towns of St. Leu and St. Louis, 
and beyond them the prosperous seaport of St. Pierre, with a weU- constructed 
harbour and solid breakwater enclosing an outer basin 30 to 50 feet deep. 
Here is the terminal station of the coast railway, which describes a curve of 75 
miles round half the periphery of the island through St. Paul, the Pointe des 

E 2 


Galets, St. Denis, to Sf. Brnoif. This line is a remarkable piece of engineering 
work, abounding in deep cuttings, bridges, embankments, and tunnels. 

Beyond the villages of St. Joseph and St. Fhilippc on the south coast, the 
zone of inhabitable and fertile lands is interrupted by the eruptive rocks discharged 
from the Grand Brul^ and several secondary craters. But after passing St. 
Rose the main highway round the coast leads to St. Benoit, which may claim the 
title of a town, and which is approached by a handsome bridge here crossing the 
River des Marsouins. The railway from St. Benoit to St. Denis passes by 
Bras-Pown, one of the few places in the island which is not under the protection 
of some patron saint. 


Reunion is represented in France by a senator and two deputies, while the 
local administration is entrusted to a governor, assisted by a council, which is 
composed of the chief officials and two of the leading citizens. Thei'e is also 
a general council of thirty-sis members elected by the cantons, and judicial 
matters are controlled bj- a procureur-general. The mother country votes a 
yearly subsidy for the suj^port of the officials and of the garrison, numbering from 
three thousand to four thousand men. But public works and instruction are pro- 
vided for by the direct and indirect taxes, constituting a considerable local burden. 

The island is divided administratively into eight cantons and sixteen communes, 
tabulated in the Appendix. 


Within a recent period Rodrigues, the Diego Ra'is of the Portuguese, was 
supposed to be of diifcrent origin from other members of the Maseareuhas grou.p. 
Although it had been classed by Bory de Saint- Vincent and other naturalists 
amongst volcanic lands, Iliggin* had described it as a mass of red and grey granite 
underlying sandstones and limestones, and this erroneous description had sufficed 
to cause this island to be regarded as a remnant of the " Lemurian " continent. 
Rodigues, however, is not formed of granite rocks, but like Mauritius and Reunion, 
consists of lavas ejected from the depths of the sea. Here are even seen superb 
columnar basalts, amongst others those of Thunder Mountain, which rises on the 
north side, above the banks of Oyster River. The shafts of the columns in this 
place exceed 200 feet in height. 

The lava formations are continued seawards hy plateaux of cavernous reefs, 
which more than double the extent of the island, and which render Rodrigues 
inaccessible to shii^ping, except through narrow and dangerous passages. But on 
the other hand, the surrounding waters are exempt from cyclonic storms ; the 
south-east trade winds blow with great regularity, while the island is of too small 
extent to give rise to shifting currents. 

* /'rnren/iiir/x of the Iluijiit Ocoririiplncdl Socieh/, l.S4a. 



Rodrigues, which is administered by a commiissioner dependent on the governor 
of ^Mauritius, had in 18S6 a population of less than two thousand, a number 
relatively ten times less than that of the neighbouring island. Formed of 
disiutegrated volcanic rocks, naturally fertile, and abounding in water and fruits, 
the island was formerly covered with forests, which have been destroyed by 
conflagrations. Xothiag is now seen except brushwood and here and there a few 

Fig-. 18. — EODEIGTTES. 
Scale 1 : 135,000. 



clumps oipandanus cakoa. But although it no longer deserves the name of the 
" earthly paradise " given to it by Le Guat in the seventeenth century, Rodrigues 
might easily support large numbers of settlers. It even still exports considerable 
quantities of maize, haricot beans, fruits, fish, and cattle to Mauritius. The outlet 
for this trade is the little town of Port Mathurin, on the north coast. 

Ihe turtles which down to the beginning of the eighteenth centiu-y swarmed 


oa the banks of Rodrigues, have completely disappeared, driven away or exter- 
minated by the reckless way the fishery was conducted. About the year 1760, as 
many as thirty thousand were conveyed in eighteen months to Mauritius. 

Although visited from time to time by the Portuguese and Dutch, Rodrigues 
was not permanently occupied till 1691, when the Protestant refugee, Le Guat, 
resided here for over two years with seven companions. Before the abolition of 
slavery, a considerable Negro j)opulation was employed on the plantations ; but 
since then large numbers of the emancipated hands have withdrawn to Mauritius, 
distant about 880 miles. In 1843 the population had thus fallen to about two 
hundred and fifty souls, but since then it has again increased, mainly by the 
arrival of blacks, who find employment in clearing and reclaiming the land on 
the slopes of the hills. 

There are only two small centres of population, Port Mathitrin on the coast, 
and Gabriel in the interior, near Mount Limon (1,320 feet), culminating point of 
the island. On the southern slope are seen, at variovis elevations, old coralline 
beaches pierced with caves. In one of these grottoes were discovered the remains 
of the jWcsc^; /(//«, or " solitary," and of other birds belonging to extinct species. 

During the Napoleonic wars, Rodrigues enjoyed considerable strategic import- 
ance. After its seizure by the English, it was made the raUying-point of the 
expeditions organised in India against Mauritius, and thus contributed to the 
reduction of all the Mascarenhas Islands. 

The Keeling Islands. 

Beyond Rodrigues no lands are met in the direction of the Eastern Archipelago 
for a distance of some 2,300 miles, the expanse of waters being first broken by 
the small circular group of the Keeling Islands, so named from the English 
navigator who discovered them in 1609. They are also known as the Cocos 
Islands, from the cocoanut palms lending a fringe of bright verdure to these 
low-lying islets. 

Although lying about 600 miles from the Sunda Strait, the Keeling Archi- 
pelago had its origin, probably, in the same terrestrial movements that gave rise 
to the Asiatic islands, for it exactly faces the fissure now separating Java from 
Sumatra, and is disposed in a line with the volcanic islets in the middle of the 

Hence it may be assumed that the Keelings rest on an igneous foundation 
upheaved from the bed of the ocean. At little over a mile from the entrance to 
the atoll, Fitzroy failed to touch the bottom with a line over 1,000 fathoms 
long, so that the submerged slopes of the plateau must be inclined at an angle 
of little less than forty-five degrees. This atoll, visited by Darwin during the 
voyage of the Beagle, in 1836, has become in geographical literature one of the 
most frequently quoted examples in favour of the great naturalist's ingenious 
theory of subsidence and ujjheaval of the marine bed. According to this view, 
the circular group of islets may be regarded as the embattlemeuts of the lofty 



coralline tower, slowly built up by the polyps as the base of the structure slowly 
subsided. Since the preparation of the first chart of the group, indications of 
upheaval have been observed The beach has been raised and enlarged, some of 

Fig'. 19. — Keelino Isl/Ujd.s. 
Srale 1 : 135,000. 


Eosb ohGreenwlc 



Sands and reefs ex- 
posed at low water. 

6,400 Feet and 

the channels have been closed, and lagoons formerly communicating with the open 
sea are now inaccessible to shipping. 

The atoll, which is interrupted by numerous breaches, and which opens out 
broadly towards the north, consists of some twenty elongated islets occupying at 
high water a total space of about six square miles. The only spontaneous growths 


are the cocoanut palms aud about thirty other species, the germs of which have 
drifted with the current from Java, sweeping round by Australia. But numerous 
alimentary plants, as well as domestic animals and rats, now a formidable scourge, 
have been introduced by man. Hare, the first colonist, settled on the islands with 
about a hundred slaves. But at present the archipelago has become one large 
plantation, whose owner, who is also the governor, employs some five hundred 
Malays in working his vast palm-groves. All the inhabitants — men, pigs, 
poultry, and the very crabs — live mainly on cocoanuts. Water, of pluvial origin, 
is procured from wells, which are sunk in the sands and which rise and fall with 
the tides. 

Formerly the group was considered a Dutch possession ; but it was occupied 
by the English in 1856, and attached to the government of Ceylon. Since 1886, 
however, it depends on Singapore. 

Christmas Island. 

The triangidar island of Christmas, lying 240 miles south of the coast of 
Java, appears also to have risen like Keeling from the marine bed. Depths of 
over 3,000 fathoms have been recorded in the waters flowing between it and 
Java. But although also covered with cocoanut palms, Christmas is not an atoll. 
Almost completely encircled by fringing reefs, it is entirely of calcareous 
coralline origin. Three distinct shore lines at the respective elevations of 40, 
140, and 170 feet above the jjresent sea-level seem to indicate three succes- 
sive periods of upheaval. 

Amstekdam and St. Paul. 

Both of these islets, Ij'iug in the southern region of the Indian Ocean, about 
midway between the C'ape of Good IIoj)e and Adelaide in South Australia, are 
masses of eruptive rocks ejected from the abysmal depths and unconnected with 
any other lands. Neither plants, animals, nor fossils indicate any former 
connection with the Mascarenhas or Madagascar. Within five miles of St. 
Paul dej^ths have been recorded of 1,200 fathoms, so precipitous are the sub- 
marine escarpments. Although only forty-sis miles apart, the two islands 
themselves present great differences in their geological constitution, so that 
they most j^robably never at any time formed continuous land. They are 
considered to belong politically to Great Britain ; nevertheless fishermen from 
Reunion have often endeavoured to make them French territory, and in 1843 
a trading company landed some troops to take possession of these waifs in the 
name of France. 

On his return voyage after the death of Magellan, El Cano passed not far from 
"a very high island, situated under the thirty-seventh degree of latitude, which 
seemed uninhabited, without any trees and with a circumference of about six 
leagues," a descrij)tion answering very well to the island afterwards named New 
Amsterdam, or simply Amsterdam. 



The discoverer of St. Paid is unknown, although the name already occurs in 
a geographical document of the sixteenth century. At the beginning of the 
following centui'3' both islands wore well known to the Dutch navigators, and Van 
Vlaming was the first to land on them iu the year 1696. Since that time they 
have been frequently visited, too often unwillingly, by shipwrecked crews, and 
since 1841 St. Paul has been permanently occupied by a community engaged in 

Fig-. 20. — AilSIEEDAM. 

Scale 1 ; 90,000. 

77°3+-EasboP Greenwich 


124 Feet and 

fishing and otter-hunting. Recently, also, they have been the object of scientific 
expeditions, notably in 1874, when the French naturalists stationed at St. Paul 
to observe the transit of Venus utilised the occasion to study the geological 
structure and prepare charts of both volcanic masses. 

It has often been jjroposed to establish a port of call at St. Paul on the route 
to Australia. But under this latitude, although correspoutliug to that of I'alermo 



and Athens in the northern hemisphere, the climate is so inclement, the west 
winds blow at times with such fury, and the islands offer so few resources beyond 
fish, that a residence on them is always regarded as a painful exile. 

Amsterdam, which is much the larger of the two, attains an altitude of -3,000 
feet in its highest summit, which is nearly always wrapped in fogs. It has the 

Fig. 21.— St. Paul. 
Scale I : 4ri,000. 

East of G 

160 Feet and 

form of a somewhat regular rectangle, whose longest axis is disposed in the 
direction from south-east to north-west. On the west side have occurred extensive 
landslips resulting in precipitous cliffs over 2,500 feet high, against which the 
waves beat with great fury, so that it is seldom possible to land on this side. 
The summit, which has rarely been ascended, presents a boggy surface dotted 

V' ^ .1' 



iMIiiMiiimM I \"\ liililiill M^^^^^^^^^^^^^ V ^i 





over with cones from wliich lavas have been discharged. In 1792, at the time of 
d'Entrecasteaux's visit, the island was in flames, caused either by the burning 
of the dense mass of reeds growing on the plateaux, or b}^ the craters, possibly 
at that time in full activity. At present they are perfectly quiescent. 

St. Paul, which is live or six times smaller than Amsterdam, presents a 
typical instance of a breached marine volcano of perfectly regular form. The 
circular crater, now flooded by the sea, opens towards the north-east, and is 
enclosed by escarpments and taluses from 760 to 900 feet high. Thus is formed 
an extensive harbour of refuge completely sheltered and 240 feet deep, but 
barred at the enti-ance by two projecting peninsulas of debris, which shift 
their form with the waves, and which have at times been joined in a continuous 
rampart, preventing all access to shipping. Thermal springs abound on the margin 
of this basin, where by merely brushing aside the surface sands enough hot water 
may be collected to boil the fish captured close by. 

A comparison of the early descriptions with those of modern explorers would 
seem to show that the underground energies have greatly diminished since the 
discovery of the island. The thermal sjjrings are apparently cooler, the gas jets 
less abimdant, the hot spaces less extensive. Moreover the island is itself 
diminishing through the rapid destruction of its shores. Everywhere the coast 
is carved into cliJffs, and on both sides of the entrance to the flooded crater huge 
fragments have broken away from the flanks of the volcano. Towards the north- 
east the coast is fringed by several rocky islets, of which the most striking are 
La Quille, a horizontally stratified pyramidal mass, and North Island, a basaltic 
colonnade affecting the form of a circular temple. 

The flora comprises from thirty-five to forty species of mosses and lichens, and 
about fifteen of herbaceous growths. The trees planted by the fishermen and the 
botanists of various expeditions have not succeeded, while the vegetables, such as 
potatoes, sorrel, and carrots, have much degenerated. The cabbage alone thrives 
to a surprising degree, tending even to acquire arborescent proportions. A few 
butterflies, and even a bee, have been found, but no land-shells. The pigs let loose 
on the island survived only a few years, but the cats, mice, and rats have become 
acclimatised. "Thrown together by a common fate, they dwell peacefully in the 
same retreats." 

Amsterdam, less studied because less accessible than St. Paul, appears to 
have a richer flora and faima. It is even said to possess one or more small 
quadrupeds, including a weasel. Here the French expedition of 1874 discovered 
about fifty plants, of which as many as twenty-three were indigenous species. 
Amongst the larger growths is the phylica arborea, a shrub which had not previously 
been met beyond the Atlantic basin. 

The Austral Islands. 

Several insular groups follow eastwards in the regions of the Indian Ocean 
strewn with floating ice. liut these cold lands, girdled round by breakers and 


buffeted by fierce gales, are too inhospitable to afford a permanont home to man. 
Here shipwi'ecked mariners have often i^assed an anxious time daily sweeping the 
horizon in search of a friendly sail. Whalers have also established more or less 
permanent stations in the neighbourhood of the fishing-grounds. Lying on the 
ocean highway between Great Britain and Australia, in the track of the western 
trade winds, these islands are fortunately well known, and have even been 
carefully studied, especially by the naturalists of the Challenger expedition of 1874. 
All are of volcanic origin, rising above the surface of waters over 1,500 fathoms 

Marion, Prince Edavaed, and the Crozets. 

Marion, so named from the navigator who discovered it in 1771, is the highest 
of the western group, lying over 720 miles to the south-east of the Cape of Good 
Hope. It is exclusively of igneous formation, its central cone rising to a height 
of over 4,000 feet, and even in summer covered with a snowy mantle down to 
1,000 feet above sea-level. The periphery of this central cone is studded with 
secondary craters presenting the appearance of excrescences on its flanks, while 
heaps of red scorise, here and there moss-grown, descend to the water's edge. 

Prince Edward, so named by Cook, attains an altitude of 2,000 feet. The 
Crozets, also discovered by Marion, form an archipelago of several islands, one of 
which. Possession Island, exceeds 5,000 feet. Hog Island takes its name from the 
animals here let loose by an English captain to supply the whalers and shipwrecked 
crews ; but Rabbit Island would now be a more appropriate name, for the swine 
have been replaced by thousands of coneys, which make their burrows in the 
heaps of scoria). 


Kerguelen, by far the largest of all these groups, was discovered in 1772 by 
the French captain whose name it bears, and who again visited it the next year, 
when he found it to be an island, and not a peninsula of the great southern 
continent sought for by all navigators in the Austral seas. It was again explored 
in 1776 by Cook, who proposed to call it Desolation Land, a name which it 
certainly merits, to judge from the reports of the whalers, the naturalists of the 
Challenger expedition, and of those sent the following year from England, America, 
and the United States to observe the transit of Venus. 

Kerguelen, which lies near the fiftieth degree of south latitude, and which is 
surrounded by some three hundred islets, rocks, and reefs of all sizes, was 
formerly almost inaccessible to sailing vessels. Nevertheless it offers, especially 
on its cast side, a large number of deep bays, creeks, and islets, affording shelter to 
ships that have succeeded in threading the maze of outer channels and passages. 
These indentations on the seaboard present the same fjord-like formations as 
those observed on the shores of the north polar regions, which were at one time 
completely covered by an ice-cap. 




The Kerguelen mountains, all of igneous origin and either of columnar or 
terrace formation, are not disposed in any regular system, although the main axis 
runs on the whole in the direction from north-Tvest to south-east. According to 
the reports of the whalers, the underground forces are still active, and a 
mountain in the south-west is said to emit vapours. Mount Ross, the highest 
summit hitherto measured (6,100 feet), lies near the southern extremity of the 
island, while the eastern and south-eastern peninsulas are respectively occupied 
by Mounts Crozier (3,300 feet) and Wyville Thomson (3,200 feet). Glaciers 

Fig. 22. — Kebotjelen. 
Scale 1 : 1,600,000. 



descend from the upper valleys of these highlands, and at least at one point on the 
west side reach the seacoast. 

Towards the west the snows and ice covering the interior, and easily confused 
at a distance with the overhanging banks of white clouds, render an accurate 
survey of the craters, crevasses, and lava streams almost impossible. But near 
the seaboard are seen numerous volcanoes, whose craters are now filled with snow 
or water. The east side, where fair weather prevails, receives less moisture, and 
here the snow line is arrested at a mean elevation of 1,000 feet above the sea. 


Formerly the island enjoj^ed a very different and much milder climate, for in 
the valle}'s the argillaceous schists here and there overlie fossil wood at everj' 
stage of transformation, in one place almost still fresh, in another half petrified, 
or even changed to pure silica. In the cavities of the basalt rocks are also 
found layers of coal varying from a few inches to over a yard in thickness, and 
overlying more recent eruptive rocks. So numerous are these deposits that it has 
been proposed to convert Kergueleu into a coaling station on the ocean highway 
between England and Australia. Were the project realised, this now useless 
French possession might acquire a certain commercial value. There can be no 
doubt that cattle might also be reared on the island, where the sheep landed by 
the expedition under Captain Ross throve well. Sheep-farming has succeeded 
excellently on the Falkland Islands, which have the same climate as Kerguelen, 
and an analogous fauna and flora. 

The present climate of Kerguelen is very equable, varying little from winter 
to summer. According to Studer, the difference of temperature throughout the 
year is only 18° F., ranging from 32° in winter to 50° in summer, with a mean of 
39° or 40°. But there is an excess of moisture, and high gales are alwaj-s blowing 
either from the north or west, and are often accompanied by hail, snow, or rain, 
though at times also by clear, bright skies. Sometimes these gales are displaced 
by north-easterly winds bearing copious rains, fogs, and a higher temperature ; 
but the normal direction of the atmospheric currents is from the north-west. To 
these incessant storms the naturalist, Studer, attributes the fact that the local 
insects, esiDecially the flies and butterflies, are destitute of wings, which could lead 
only to their destruction, by exposing them to the risk of being blown seawards 
with no hope of return. Even the strong-winged albatross never builds on the 
north-west side of the island, which bears the brunt of the tempest and is 
wrapjDed in eternal fogs. His home is on the shores facing the clear blue skies. 

The Kerguelen flora is extremely poor, resembling that rather of an antarctic 
land than of an island situated in the temperate zone and corresponding in latitude 
to the valley of the Somme in the northern hemisphere. Hooker, who spent a 
winter on the island, failed to discover more than eighteen flowering plants, to 
which further researches have only added three, making twent3'-one altogether 
in a total of about a hundred and fifty species. Nearly two-thirds of the vegetation 
consists in fact of algas and mosses, and even of the phanerogams about one-third 
are monocotyledons, a proportion occurring nowhere else in the whole world. 
After traversing the zone of large algse {macrocystis pyriferd), some of whose rope- 
like stalks are 200 feet long, the observer comes upon a narrow zone of grass, 
followed by j)lants of the saxifrage type, mosses, and a few graminaceae sprouting 
in the cavities of the rocks. On the slopes of the hills azoreUa sekiyo develojas 
extensive beds saturated with water, where the exj)lorer sinks to his knees at 
every step. The onl}^ plant producing anj' effect on the landscape is a gigantic 
species of cabbage, whose botanical name {pringJea antiscorhutica) sufiiciently 
indicates its value to seafarers condemned to long periods of a coarse salt meat 
diet. This species is peculiar to Kerguelen, being found nowhere else in the 


Indian Ocean. The lijcllin, another flowering phmt, resembles an Andean growth, 
and three species also supposed to be indigenous in Kerguelen are so like their 
congeners in Tierra del Fuego, that botanists are inclined to regard them as simple 
varieties ; lastly, one of the local growths is of Australian origin. But on the 
whole, the Kerguelen flora is most akin to the Fuegiau, a fact doubtless due to the 
marine currents setting steadily eastwards. 

The only bii'd peexiliar to Kerguelen and the Marion and Crozet groups is the 
chionis minor, about the size of a pigeon, and not unlike an allied species common 
to the Falkland Islands and Tierra del Fuego. There are no land mammals, 
reptiles, or batrachians, and the fur-bearing seals and other cetaceans stiU swarm- 
ing in the Kerguelen waters at the beginning of the century have already become 
rare. In 1843 over five hundred whalers found occupation in these seas, but in 
18~4 not more than five or sis were employed in the capture of whales. The 
otters are also threatened with extermination, and have already become so scarce 
that they are no longer regularly hunted. But a number of vessels are stUl 
engaged in the capture of the huge sea-lions, one of whom yields as much as a 
ton of oU. These and other seals still find some shelter from their human enemies 
in the bays along the west coast, whither the fury of the elements prevents the 
fishers from following them. Some of these fishers, who had collected a vast 
quantity of oil on the south-west point of Kerguelen, had to wait for years before 
a single ship ventured through the breakers to take in a cargo, and growing 
impatient they at last set fire to their whole stock, whence the name of Bonfire 
Beach given to this part of the coast. 

The most frequented haven is Christinas Harbour, at the north-west extremity of 
the island, the position of which is indicated at a distance by a basalt rock 
assuming the apjjearance of an imposing triumphal arch. 

MacDoxai.d and Heard Islands. 

MacDonald, lying to the south-east of Kerguelen, is a mere rock fringed by 
breakers and inaccessible to fishers. But Heard is visited both by whalers and 
seal-hunters. Except at the black lava headlands, this island is entirely covered 
by a white mantle, two vast snow-fields concealing the hills round about Big Ben, 
the chief summit, which is said to be loftier than Mount Ross in Kerguelen. But 
although supposed to be over 6,000 feet high it was completely invisible at the 
time of the Chalknrjer expedition, all the heights above 1,000 feet being wrapped 
in dense fog. The climate of Heard is even more inclement and stormy than that 
of Kerguelen. The fierce south-east polar winds prevail very generally in these 
southern latitudes, and are miich dreaded bv mariners. 


General Sura'ey. 

/yVr^J^TlNDONESIA or Insiiliiidia, that is, " Insular India," as the Dutch 
-^ " T-^Xiii have rightly named this region, is better known to English readers 
as the Eastern, Asiatic, Malay, or East Indian Archijoelago, and 
sometimes by the simpler and somewhat more convenient expression, 
Malaysia. It constitutes, if not a political, certainly a well-defined 
geographical area. The submarine bank on which stand the two great islands of 
Java and Sumatra terminates abruptly towards the Indian Ocean in steep escarp- 
ments plunging into the very deepest abysses of the whole basin. Java is continued 
eastwards by a chain of smaller islands extending to the north-east of Timor, and 
evidently forming part of the same region ; the volcanoes traversing this long line 
of islands attest the action of the same geological forces. South of Paj)uasia the 
narrow igneous zone is deflected northwards, as if to mark the eastern limits 
of Indonesia proper. One of the lines of volcanic forces traverses the island of 
Halmahera (Jiloh), while another touches the north-east extremity of Celebes, 
thus enclosing this great island within the fiery semicircle sweeping round from 

Borneo, largest of all the Sunda Islands, and of almost continental proportions, 
is even more closelj^ connected with the same group than Sumatra and Java, for it 
stands entirely on the same scarcely submerged marine plateau. The three great 
islands are separated by shallow waters less than 50 fathoms deep, where vessels 
can everywhere ride at anchor. Thus an upheaval of about 40 fathoms would 
suffice to enlarge the Asiatic continent by an extent of nearly 1,500,000 square 

In many respects the Philippines might also be regarded as forming part of the 
same natiu'al region as Indonesia, for the semicircle of volcanoes is continued across 
this archipelago, while its two chief members, Mindanao and Luzon, are both 
attached to Borneo by chains of islands, islets, and shoals. But the Philippines 
already belong to a different climate, and they are almost everywhere washed by 
deep waters. The Sulu waters, flowing between Borneo and the PhiKppines, 
present abysses of over 2,200 fathoms. 





I.ndo-Malaya and Austro-Malaya. 

But Malaysia itself, as has long been shown by Wallace,* forms two perfectly 
distinct physical regions, the Indo-Malayan, comprising the three great islands of 
Sumatra, Java, and Borneo, connected by a shallow marine bad, and the Austro- 
Malayan, the twot chief members of which are Celebes and Jilolo, both rising 
above oceanic waters of great depth. Striking contrasts of climate, floras and 
faunas, as well as of human populations, are presented by these two main divisions 
of the Eastern Archipelago. Nevertheless both are characterised by certain 
common features, in virtue of which they may be regarded as collectively forming 

Fig. 23. — Indonesian Stxbm.^kine Plateau. 
Scale 1 : 48.000,000. 

T.^iV"^ .^-^ 


an oceanic world distinct from Asia, of which they constitute a south-eastern 

All these Indonesian lands have a total estimated extent of nearly 700,000 
square miles, or nearly six times the superficial area of the British Isles. But 
the oceanic region over which these lands are scattered is far more extensive. 
From the northernmost extremity of Sumatra to the last of the Tenimber islets, 
the distance across the Indian Ocean is no less than 2,800 miles ; while between 
Lombok and the north point of Borneo, Indonesia develops an extreme breadth of 
about 700 miles. Within this vast expanse are comprised one island larger than 

• The Malay Archipelago, the first edition of which appeared in 1808. 
t Excluding New Guinea, which is not here considered. 


France, anotlier exceeding Great Britain in size, two surpassing Ireland, seven 
more extensive than Corsica, and dozens bigger than Malta. The seas are every- 
where studded with countless tanahs, jmlos, or nusas, as the smaller islands and 
islets are variously called, some settled, others uncultivated, or thinly if at all 
inhabited. To the traveller lost in the maze of these innumerable insular groups, 
Indonesia seems a boundless oceanic world. Coasting the larger islands for days 
and weeks t'lgether in some native prau, he is bewildered by the constantly shifting 
tropical scenes, the endless varietj' of lauds and of peoples at all stages of culture, 
and whose very names are unknown to him. Headlands with extinct or still 
smoking volcanoes, coral banks, or insular forests, which seem to spring from the 
surface of the water, are landmarks that indicate his f)rogress through these inter- 
minable island-studded seas. 

As a region of transition between the Asiatic and Australian continents, 
Malaysia presents a strange contrast with the corresponding transitional region of 
the arid Arabian jDeninsula between Asia and Africa. In the richness of its 
insular development, the infinite variety of its landscapes, its brilliant vegetation, 
the number of its animal species, the diversity of its populations and abun- 
dant resources, the East Indian surpasses even the West Indian insular world 
itself. The Central American archipelago yields also to the Asiatic in historic 
importance, as well as in the economic value of the relations that have been 
developed between these two regions and the rest of the world. The relatively 
small island of Java alone has a larger population and more abundant products 
than the whole of Central America and the Antilles ; while numerous straits 
between the islands offer to interoceanic traflBc more extensile and commodious 
highways than the future Panama and Nicaraguan Canals can ever hope to 

Traversed in its entire length bj' the equinoxial line, Indonesia might well be 
called the garden of the world, not only, like the interior of Africa, because of its 
high annual temperature, but also and especially thanks to its fertile and 
copiously watered soil, its exuberant vegetation, and the costly and varied 
nature of its i^roducts. The very energy displayed by the igneous forces under 
the Sunda Islands and adjacent lands contributes to make this region one of the 
centres of terrestrial activity. Here the land quakes and is rent asunder even 
more frequentlj- than in the Central American and West Indian areas of volcanic 
disturbance. Java, the most densely peopled and one of the best cultivated and 
most productive islands in the world, is also the most violently agitated by iinder- 
ground convulsions as well as the scene of the most numerous active craters. 

These remarkable lands are not inhabited by independent native populations. 
A few unreduced tribes still find a refuge on the Sumatran plateaux, in the 
forests of Borneo and other islands ; but numerically they represent but a very 
small fraction of the Indonesian peoples. The more or less civilised Malayan 
populations, who have commercially exercised so much influence throughout the 
oceanic domain, and whose colonies have spread over an enormous expanse from 
Madagascar to Polynesia, have never been fused into a compact national body, 


and their conquests have been the work of one or another isolated group. 
Numerous petty Malay states have thus been founded, but the race has created 
no great empires. The diversity presented by their domain, divided into a 
thousand little insular mother countries, is thus reflected in their historic evo- 

But the political unity, which has failed to be spontaneously developed, is 
being accomplished under foreign supremacy. The Europeans, who have occu- 
pied the whole of America, two-thirds of Asia, and one-half of Africa, have 
also made themselves masters of the Eastern Archipelago. A single European 
power, and one of the least importance in a military sense, dominates almost 
exclusively in this vast insular world comprised between Indo-China and Aus- 

Historic Retrospect. 

Under the guidance of Arab pilots, the Portuguese navigators and Italian 
travellers appeared early in the sixteenth century in the Sunda waters, and in 
1511, Albuquerque, already master of the great city of Malacca, secured for his 
nation the political preponderance in the Malay world. The very next year the 
first consignment of nutmegs was shipped, in the Banda group, direct for Lisbon. 
In order more rapidly to explore every part of their new domain, the Portuguese 
resolved that all vessels, whether Malay, Chinese, or Javanese, trading with 
Malacca, should henceforth be commanded by a European captain. In this way 
the Eiu'opean mariners in a few years became familiar with the labyrinth of 
Indonesian maritime routes, thus securing for themselves the monopoly of the spice 
trade between the Moluccas and Lisbon. 

Doubtless the Spaniards, led by Magellan, soon appeared on the scene, in their 
turn claiming the exclusive right to the possession of the coveted " Spice Islands." 
In virtue of Alexander VI. 's famous bull, dividing the world recently dis- 
covered, or yet to be discovered, between the two Iberian powers, to Portugal 
fell all the lands situated in the far East. But Spain on her part claimed these 
same lands, as lying in the far West beyond the New World, and to put an end 
to these conflicts the Portuguese were fain to redeem by purchase the islands in 

Of these they remained peaceful possessors for nearly a century ; but in 1596 
the Dutch flag, which had been excluded by Philip II. from the direct trade with 
Lisbon, had already discovered the road to the East. The broad-beamed Dutch 
vessels made their appearance before Malacca and helped themselves to the spices 
of the native factories. Such was the commercial enterprise inspired by the two 
brothers Houtman, who bore the Portuguese a grudge for their imprisonment in 
Lisbon, that within seven years the Amsterdam and Antwerp shippers had 
equipped fifteen fleets for the Eastern Archipelago, comprising altogether sixty- 
five vessels. In 1600 the new arrivals secured a strip of territory in Sumatra, and 
in IGIO they obtained a footing in Java, where they erected a fort, afterwards 


replaced, despite the English, by that of Batavia, the central point of their future 
conquests. At this period the Portuguese had become too enfeebled to continue 
the struggle with Holland, which in 1609 had already wrested the Moluccas from 
them. At present, of their former vast empire in the Eastern seas, there remains 
nothing but the eastern half of Timor with a contiguous islet. 

Holland thus became a great political and military state, ruling over many 
kingdoms, disposing of considerable forces, with redoubtable admirals and brave 
captains at her service. Nevertheless, the trading company, to which the Nether- 
lands Government had in 1602 granted a monopoly of the commerce with Indonesia, 
found itself jjowerless to defend its vast possessions when its English rivals had 
become masters of the sea. At the end of the eighteenth century the Spice 
Islands, regarded as the most valuable of all colonial possessions, had fallen into 
the hands of England, and in order to prevent her from seizing the whole of the 
Malay Archipelago, the privileges of the company were purchased by the Dutch 

Fig. 24. — Comparative Areas of Hollajto and the Dutch East Indies. 
Sciile 1 : 48,000,000. 

East oP Gr 

States, then known as the Batavian Republic. But Java and its dependencies 
passed, none the less, into the power of the, by whom they were not 
restored till 1816, after the Napoleonic wars. 

Since that time Holland, notwithstanding her insignificant size compared with 
its Eastern possessions, has remained undisputed mistress of all the insular groups 
which she had acquired at the close of the last century. She has even extended 
her sway over several islands not previously claimed by her, while her effective 
control has been enlarged and strengthened in the interior of Sumatra, Borneo, 
and Celebes. 

The northern part of Borneo alone had hitherto remained beyond the influence 
of the Dutch, and this circumstance has enabled a British company recently to 
acquire a considerable portion of the great island. This new English domain, 
with the neighbouring priucipalitj' of Sarawak, acquired by a British soldier of 


fortune * some years ago, and the adjacent Sultanate of Brunei, togetlier with the 
Portuguese section of Timor, are the only regions in Indonesia which ai'e not 
regarded as officially dependent on the Netherlands. Nevertheless in the vast 
archipelago there still remain some unreduced tribes, and even nations, such as that 
of Atjeh, in the north of Sumatra. 

Since Germany has in her turn become a colonial power, she has acquired or 
claimed territories ou the African continent even more extensive than Indonesia. 
But their economic value may be estimated at zero compared with the Dutch East 
Indies, which many far-seeing politicians already regard as a not very remote 
inheritance of the German Empire. Possibly in anticipation of this future 
acquisition, the German Government has occupied a large part of New Guinea 
and neighbouring archipelagoes, with the view of extending eastwards this vast 
insular domain. 

Progress of Exploration. 

The already extensive historical and geographical literature relating to 
Indonesia is being constantly increased by new works. Explorers, either acting 
indejjendently or grouped in learned societies, are ceaselessly at work, investigating 
the material and moral conditions in the Malay world. Amongst the documents 
already published some are of the highest scientific value, for the Eastern Archi- 
pelago is one of those regions which most abound in interesting facts bearing on 
physical phenomena, the distribution of animal and vegetable species, human 
migrations, the evolution of mankind, and other problems connected with political 
and social economy. 

But what this encyclopaedic labour still lacks is the co-operation of the natives 
themselves. For the most part savage hunters, or toiling under hard taskmasters, 
they have but few representatives in the republic of letters, and those who do take 
part in the current of contemporary studies are not sufficiently unbiassed to judge 
of things as they really are. 

Thanks to the facilities of locomotion and free intercourse, the time has 
passed when privileged companies and Governments, jealous of their commercial 
monopolies, prevented geographers from publishing the charts and other results of 
their surveys. In the sixteenth century the Dutch and Spaniards made it a 
capital offence for any writer to publish the logs of their navigators. Copies of 
charts and maps acquired at great expense were entrusted by the Netherlands 
Government to their skippers, to be returned to the Admiralty archives after each 
voyage, the punishment of the lash, branding, or banishment being reserved for 
the traitors who disclosed them to strangers. Even in dangerous waters, where 
the perils of the deep were exaggerated by legendary reports, pilots were refused 
to ships in distress. 

But all this has changed, and at present certain parts of Indonesia are better 

* Sir James Brooke, better known aa Rajah Brooke, who purchased this territory from the Sultan of 
Brunei in 18-11. 


known, at least in their outward aspects, than many regions of Eastern Europe. 
But on the other hand the interior of several islands is delineated on our maps, 
not from accurate surveys, but from incomplete itineraries or vague native reports. 
Nevertheless, the geodetic network is gradually spreading from island to island 
across the Malay lands, and sooner or later the whole of the archipelago will be 
represented with the same accuracy and minuteness of detail as Java and some 
parts of Sumatra and even of Celebes, which are already figured on excellent 
topographical and geological charts. Meanwhile, as to the population, it is still 
impossible to give even a rough estimate of the actual numbers for the whole area. 
The official statistics distinguish for the different islands the number of inhabitants 
returned bj' the regular census, a systematic calculation or a more or less plausible 
estimate. Lastlj-, there are regions for which not even a conjecture can be hazarded. 


The Sunda Islands lie within the zone of the alternating trade winds and 
monsoons. But the normal course of the aerial currents is constantly modified by 
the shifting of the centres of attraction due to the returning seasons and to local 
phenomena. At Batavia, taken as the headquarters of the hundred and fifty-one 
meteorological stations scattered over the Archipelago, the " good monsoon," that 
is, the south-east trade wind, prevails during the northern summer months, and 
especially from June to September. At this time the atmosphere is usually drier 
than during the " bad monsoon," which mainly comprises the period from 
December to March, when a much larger quantity of moisture is precipitated. 

Nevertheless, this contrast of the seasons is not alwaj^s very sharply defined, 
especially in the interior of the large islands. No month is altogether rainless, 
and even during the so-called dry season the atmosphere along the seaboard is 
charged with 80 per cent, of relative humidity, while during the rainy season 
it is nearly at the point of saturation. For the whole of Indonesia the mean 
rainfall, according to Voyeikov, exceeds 120 inches. But in many regions it 
is very difficult to distinguish the true alternation of the seasons, and form a 
correct idea of the normal succession of wet and fine weather. Even to the east 
of Celebes the moisture is brought chiefly by the south-east trades, while the west 
monsoon is accompanied by clear skies. In a shifting and uncertain zone between 
Siimatra and Timor the two opposing currents are, as a rule, accompanied by about 
an equal quantity of moisture. On the other hand, in the endless labyrinth of 
islands, the normal direction of the lower winds and marine breezes is modified by 
every strait and streamlet. 

In a vertical direction also — that is, ascending from the sea-level to the 
mountain tops — considerable changes are observed in the general course of the 
winds. The western monsoon affects the lower atmospheric masses only, its 
thickness never exceeding 6,500 feet. Hence its force is mainly felt about the 
foot and lower slopes of the hills, as for instance at Buitenzorg (920 feet) in the 
western part of Java. In this district, one of the most abundantly watered in the 



whole of llalaysia, it often thunders every day for months together. So 
accustomed does one grow to the continual peals echoing from height to height, 
that the stillness of cloudless evening skies causes a feeling of surprise. But the 
higher aerial spaces belong entirely to the zone of the south-eastern trades, which 
sometimes rise, sometimes fall, and by clashing with the western monsoon 
occasionally produce extremely violent local cyclones. But in the higher regions 
they always pi-edominate, as shown by the smoke from the lofty craters, which 
invariably sets towards the west. No spectacle is more impressive than that of a 
western monsoon driving hard towards the east, while the long streak of volcanic 
vapours is seen through a break in the clouds to be setting in the opposite 
direction across a background of blue skies. In these upper regions the 
atmosphere is much drier and far less frequently disturbed than lower down. 

Analogous climatic changes take place in the direction from west to east. The 
western parts of Java are more humid than the eastern, and these receive more 
rain than Timor still farther east. The summer and winter temperatures also 
become less equable in the same direction. In the Sunda Islands the variation 
from month to month is less than 2^ F., the extremes being greater between day 
and night than between the hot and cool seasons. If the nights are colder and 
the days warmer in the dry months, compensation is afforded by the rainy months, 
when the temperature varies little throughout the twenty-four hours. At 
Batavia the rise and fall of the glass rarely exceeds 18° F. during the course of 
the year ; but in Timor the discrepancy is much greater, the eastern islands of 
Indonesia already coming within the influence of the Australian climate.* 


The Indonesian flora, comprising over nine thousand flowering plants described 
by Miguel, belongs to the same zone as that of India. But going eastwards it 
becomes gradually moditied, approaching more and more towards the Australian 
types according as the atmosphere becomes drier and the climate less equable. 
In Timor, for instance, the character of the vegetation is already far more 
Australian than Indian. Here the eucalyptus, casuarina, and acacia predominate, 
but instead of developing large forests they grow in open thickets, as on the 
neighbouring continent. 

In the western regions of the archipelago vegetable life is extremely vigorous. 
Despite the constant clearings and incessant struggle of the peasants against 

• Temperatures and rainfall in various parts of Indonesia according to observations varying from 
five to thirteen rears : — 




8. Lat. 





Padam (Sumatra) . 


79° F. 

81° F. (May) 

78° F. (Nov.) 

190 inches 

Palembang ,, . . 

2° 50' 



79° (Jan.) 

120 ., 

Banjermassin (Borneo) 




79° (Dec.) 

90 „ 

Batavia (Java) . . 

6° 11- 


79° (May, Oct.) 

77° (Jan., Feb ) 

78 ., 

Buitenzorg , , . . 

6° 37' 


76° (Sept.) 

7(5° (Feb.) 

ISO ,, 

Banjuwangie . . 

8° 17' 


81° (April) 

80° (Julv) 

Amboyna .... 

3° 41' 


81° (Feb.) 

77° (July) 

loO .. 


spontaneous growths, certain Javanese forests still maintain their ground, rivalling 
in splendour those of Brazil and Columbia. Vast districts in Java, probably 
occupying one-fourth of the whole area, are no doubt covered with savannahs, 
where nothing flourishes except the alang [imperata arundinaceu), in which horse 
and rider disappear together. In the midst of these boundless seas of a light- 
green herbaceous growth, little is seen except a few scattered clumps of trees 
But these savannahs are due to the action of man destroying the forests, either to 
clear the land or to destroy the tigers and snakes, and in any case the large 
timber, when left to itself, never fails to recover its lost ground. Forests of 
acacias and mimosas, which give little shade, also flourish on the slopes of the 
limestone hills. But on the moist and fertile coastlands and well-watered heights 
the surface is overgrown with a surprisingly vigorous vegetation. Here every 
stem is covered with epiphytes, their branches are matted together by the creepers ; 
while the tall palms, seeking light and air, burst through the surrounding foliage, 
forming, as it were, a forest above a forest. 

The Sunda Islands have their peculiar species of palms, amongst others, two 
varieties of the sago {metroxylon Ruinphii or sagus) and the corypha {gebaiig), which 
grows in a narrow zone at an elevation of about 450 feet, immediately above the 
coast forests. The liana-palms {rattan or rofang) twine round the other trees, 
hanging in festoons from top to top sometimes for a space of three or four 
hundred feet, and thus binding together whole forests in a compact mass into which 
it is impossible to penetrate without the aid of the axe or fire. Some species of 
bamboo also acquire the trailing habits of the lianas, occasionally growing to a 
length of 130 feet ; others are armed with thorns and form dense thickets shunned 
even by the wild beasts themselves. The marvellous development of the parasitic 
plants in the Sunda Islands is well seen in the blossom of Rnfflemi, which grows 
on the roots and branches of a species of cissKS. In Sumatra one variety bears 
enormous flowers over seven feet round. 

On the slopes of the mountains the various growths are disposed vertically 
according to the climate, ranging from the tropical zone of the coastlands to the 
temjDerate region of the topmost crests. Nevertheless, curious associations are 
sometimes observed amongst plants belonging naturally to different areas. Thus 
in Sumatra, the oak is found in company with the camphor-tree. On the same 
seaboard there are also met certain teaks, which in Java occur only at considerable 
altitudes on the flanks of the mountains. On the northern uplands of Sumatra 
are found certain pines intermingled with casuarinas. Here is the southern limit 
of those conifers, whose true home are the Himalayas. 

Amid this endless variety of forms each island of the archipelago has its own 
share of endemic growths. Thus in the Sumatran flora, comprising over two 
thousand six hundred known phanerogams, Miguel enumerates a thousand and 
forty-nine which are not met in Java, although separated from the larger island 
only by a narrow strait. Even the western and eastern divisions of Java itself, 
differing but slightly in their climates, present considerable contrasts in their 
local floras. Not only the Moluccas, long famous for their valuable sjiiccs, but all 


the other islands in the archipelago, possess plants which occur nowhere else on 
the surface of the globe. In three years the botanist Beccari discovered over two 
hundred absolutely new species in the single district of Sarawak, on the north- 
west coast of Borneo. In the same island the summits of the mountains form so 
many secondarj- islands, with independent growths recalling the types of remote 
lands in more temperate climates. At an elevation of 8,500 feet, on the flanks of 
Kina-Balu, in Xorth Borneo, are met certain forms belonging to genera which 
elsewhere occur only in Xew Zealand. 


Going eastwards the flora is gradually modified with the changing climatic 
conditions, whereas the transition from fauna to fauna are for the most part of an 
abrupt character. While the species in the western islands as far as Bali are of 
the Indian type, those of the eastern regions, beginning with Lombok, present the 
characteristics of Australian zoological life. Two worlds as different as Europe 
and America here lie side by side, separated only by a strait less than 20 miles 
broad. But the two islands of Bali and Lombok, composed largely of igneous 
rocks, are probably for the most part of comparatively recent origin. Hence 
what is now a narrow channel was formerly a wide branch of the sea. 

Nevertheless the striking contrast between two faunas on the same chain of 
islands presenting such great uniformity in their physical constitutions must still 
be regarded as a most remarkable phenomenon. One of the salient features of 
the terrestrial crust is this very range of volcanic islands evidently springing 
from the same fault in the submarine bed and stretching from the islet of Krak- 
atau to that of Xila for a distance of 2,200 miles. Yet this line of eruptive rocks 
is intersected precisely in the middle by an abrupt parting-line between two 
distinct faunas. The inference is irresistible that the formation of the Sundanese 
volcanoes is of relatively recent date. The sudden contrast of the Indian and 
Australian animal forms shows that here the distribution of land and water, as 
well as the planetary life itself, has greatly changed during the course of the later 
geological ejjochs. 

Between Borneo and Celebes, which however are separated by a much wider 
strait than that of Lombok, the contrast between the animal species is no less 
remarkable, nearly all the forms of the two regions belonging to distinct families. 
"VVe must therefoie conclude that here also the lands characterised by different 
faunas have remained disconnected since extremely remote geological times. But 
Celebes, unlike Lombok, formed no part of the Australian world. On all sides its 
isolation appears to be complete, dating evidentlj' from a period of vast antiquity. 

On the other hand both their fauna and their flora attest the ancient con- 
tinuity of the three great islands of Sumatra, Java, and Borneo, which are 
separated only by shallow waters from the Asiatic mainland. Wallace enumerates 
forty-eight species of mammals common to the continental and neighbouring 
insular ilalay lands. Sumatra, with its long mountain range disposed parallel 



witt the Malay peninsula, has a fauna which may be regarded as almost identical 
with that of the mainland. Borneo, being farther removed, already presents a 
certain originality in its animal forms. Still more marked characteristics are offered 
by Java, notwithstanding its proximity to Sumatra, with which it is farther 
connected by intervening islets affording resting-places to birds of passage. 
From the fact that Java possesses more endemic birds and insects than either 
Borneo or Sumatra, it may be inferred that it was the first to be detached from 
the mainland. Borneo doubtless still formed continuous land with Indo-China at 
a time when Java was already surrounded on all sides by the marine waters. 

Fig. 2.5. — Paetixo Line of the Indonesun Faujjas. 
Scale 1 : 32,500,000. 


Hence the zoological data formally contradict the Javanese tradition to the effect 
that the physical rupture between Sumatra and Java was quite a recent event, 
dating only from about the year 1000 of the new era. 

But the zoological exploration of Indonesia is still far from being concluded. 
The region best known to naturalists is the western section of Java, although 
much attention has also been bestowed on the district of Padang in Sumatra, 
those of Sarawak and Banjcrmassiu in Borneo, the island of Bangka, and certain 
peninsulas in Celebes. But all this forms biit a small fraction of the vast 
Indonesian domain, and the future doubtless reserves many surprises for the 


At the same time the explorations already made suffice to give some idea of the 
teeming animal life in the western parts of the archipelago. During six j^ears of 
research, Wallace alone collected over a hundred and twenty-five thousand zoolo- 
gical specimens. The Indonesian mammals comprise over one hundred and seventy 
species, amongst which twenty- four belong to the ajje fainily. In Sumatra and 
Borneo occur two species of the orang-utan, that "wild man" who has been so 
often described, and who, by his intelligence and moral qualities seems to approach 
nearest to civilised man. The si-amang, nearlj- as tall as the orang-utan, has his 
home in Sumatra ; while all the western islands have their long-armed gibbons 
and long- mouthed lemuroids. 

Sumatra and Borneo are still the refuge of a species of elephant, apparently in 
no way differing from the Indian variety, as well as of a tapir, which is also met 
on the adjacent mainland. Both islands have their rhinocoroses, and Borneo and 
Java their wild cattle resembling those of Siam and Burmah. The Sunda group 
has no less than thirty- three species of carnivora, amongst which are the roj'al tiger 
and the almost equally formidable leopard. There are also as manj' as fifty different 
kinds of the bat family, and a great number of rodents, the squirrels alone being 
represented by twenty-five species, nearly all distinct from those of the mainland, 
but outwardly not unlike the tupaias, or insectivora, of which about ten varieties 
have been observed, mostly peculiar to the archipelago. 

Besides those recently introduced by man, there are about three hundred and 
fifty species of birds, some of which, notably the parrakeets, are distinguished by 
their gorgeous plumage. The ophidians and other reptiles, somewhat rare in most 
oceanic lands, are, on the contrary, very numerous in Indonesia, where the estu- 
aries are infested by crocodiles, and the forests inhabited by pythons over thirty 
feet long, and by the much-dreaded spectacled snake. Hundreds of species of 
fishes swarm in all the rivers, while thousands and thousands of the insect order 
have already been collected and classified in the European museums. Such is the 
multitude of the butterflies, that Wallace speaks of them as forming a characteristic 
feature of the insular scenery. The "oruithoptera," which, thanks to their size, 
majestic flight, and brilliant colours, make a greater show than most birds, are met 
in swarms about the verge of the forests and cultivated lands. A morning stroll 
in the more fertile districts of Malaysia is almost sure to reveal three or four, and 
often as many as eight species of papilio, of which naturalists have already 
enumerated about one hundred and thirty kinds. Borneo alone possesses thirtj-. 
the largest number yet found in any single island. The diversity of these species, 
however, diminishes gradually going eastwards, while their size increases in the 
same direction. 

Such is the poverty of the fauna as we approach the Australian continent, that 
Timor offers no more than seven species of land mammals apart from fifteen kinds 
of bats. Passing from Borneo to Celebes, the naturalist is less struck by the 
reduced number of species than by their new forms. Celebes, having been longer 
isolated than the neighbouring lands, presents greater originality in the asjDcct of 
its fauna. Lying about the parting-line between the Simdanoe and Australian 


domaiiis, it forms in some respects a connecting link between botli ; but most of its 
species are altogether peculiar, so that this great island constitutes an independent 
zoological world. Of the three hundred and fifty kinds of birds inhabiting the 
Sunda group, ten onlj' have reached Celebes, where there are no less than eighty 
found nowhere else. Of its twenty-one mammals, including seven bats, eleven are 
also peculiar to the island, while the local butterflies are distinguished from all 
their congeners elsewhere by the outward form of their wings. 

The Moluccas, lying at the eastern extremity of Indonesia, resemble Timor 
and Celebes in the poverty of their mammals, of which they have only ten, not 
counting the ubiquitous bats, and of this number there is reason to believe that 
about half, amongst others the cynopithek, confined to the island of Batjau, have 
been introduced by man. The typical forms of this insular group approach those 
of Australia, being of the marsupial order, and comprising amongst others the heli- 
deus ariel, which outwardly resembles a flying squirrel. 

On the other hand, the Moluccas have a marvellous wealth of birds, their avi- 
fauna being richer than that of the whole of Europe. Although the exploration 
of this region is still far from completed, naturalists have alreadj' discovered two 
hundred and sixty-five kinds of birds, of which one hundred and ninety-five are 
terrestrial, and most of which, such as the parrakeets, pigeons, and kingfishers, 
rival in beauty of form and gorgeous plumage those elsewhere found in the 
tropical zone. The numerous insects also, and especially the butterflies, form the 
admiration of explorers by their size and the metallic lustre of their wings. The 
little island of Amboj-na alone contains more remarkable varieties of lepidoptera 
than many vast continental regions. Here, in fact, these animal forms may be 
said to have reached the highest possible pitch of develojDment. Most of the 
species are pecidiar to the Moluccas, while the genera and types connect this 
insular fauna with that of New Guinea. Although the Asiatic continent seems to 
be continued from island to island far into the Pacific Ocean, both Celebes and the 
Moluccas already belong zoologically to another region of the globe. 


The Eastern Archipelago is shared as well by different races of mankind as by 
different faunas, but the parting-lines do not coincide for the human and animal 
forms. While the zoological domains are separated by the Lombok Strait and the 
broad Macassar Channel, the limits of the Malayan and Papuan races, with the 
allied populations, have been shifted much farther towards the east : this line 
traverses the islands of Jilolo and Burn, and then trends south-westwards in the 
direction of Timor and Sumbawa. The inhabitants of the islands lying on either 
side of these limits again present considerable differences amongst themselves, 
either offering various shades of transition between the true Malaj's and intruders 
of other races, or else belonging to a really original type, the possible survivors of 
some primitive stock. At least fifty languages are current in the archipelago, and 
each insular group requires to bo studied apart with the territory occupied by it. 


In the Sunda Islands and Celebes, as well as in a part of the Moluccas, the 
dominant, if not the exclusive race, is the Malayan, which constitutes the bulk of 
the population, or which at least has absorbed and assimilated most of the other 
ethnical elements. But whatever resemblances they may present to each other 
throughout the archipelago, these Malayan peoples are everywhere divided into 
natural groups, according to the geographical environment, their diverse inter- 
minglings, their diet and different degrees of barbarism or culture. 

The Malays, properly so called, who closely resemble those of the neighbouring 
peninsula, and who have given their name to the whole race, occupy the coastlands 
of Sumatra and Borneo, with the intermediate islands. The Javanese, as indicated 
by their name, inhabit the greater part of Java, and have also spread farther east 

Scale 1 : 45,000,000. 


Malays of divers Indonesians ! Amianiites. Papuans- Negritos, 

nationalities. Batta, Dyak. 

Minahassa, Alfuru. 

to the two islands of Bali and Lorabok. The Sundanese dwell in the western 
districts of Java, on the shores of the Sunda Strait separating that island from 
Sumatra. The Bughis hold the south-western peninsula of Celebes as well as the 
north coast, and all the adjacent i.slands. Lastly, each separate land has its more 
or less pure or mixed populations, bearing an endless variety of tiibal names. The 
term " Alfuru," however, collectively applied in Celebes and farther east to all 
the wild tribes driven from the coastlands to the interior, has no racial significance. 
It simply indicates the social condition of the populations which have kept aloof 
from the Mohammedan Malays, some of which are of lighter complexion even 
than the Javanese, while others resemble in colour and aspect the dark Papuans 
of Xew Guinea. 


Amongst the Indonesians are still found savage peoples, such as the Battas of 
Sumatra, the Bornean Dyaks, the " Alfurus," that is "Free" or "Wild," of 
Celebes, and most anthropologists are iucliiied to regard them as a primitive 
population of light colour who occuj)ied the archipelago before the arrival of the 
Malays. To them is in a special manner applied the term " Indonesian," as if they 
were the representatives of the original masters of this oceanic region. 

But in the north-eastern islands near New Guinea and the Philippines, there 
occurs yet another ethnical element quite distinct both from the Papuans and 
Malaj's, characterised b}' black or blackish skin and crisp hair. These natives, 
who resemble the Andamanese and the Negritos of the Philippines, would appear 
to be the true autochthones, still older than the fair Indonesians of Sumatra, Borneo 
and Celebes. In the western islands they have been exterminated, in the eastern 
driven to the uj)lands of the interior, just as the Indonesians themselves have been 
encroached upon in the large Sundanese islands. 

This remarkable phenomenon of distinct human as well as animal species 
dwelling in contiguous islands, under the same or analogous phj'sical conditions, 
finds its explanation in the history of the jjlanet itself. Such contrasts are the 
outcome of different epochs, which are here placed, as it were, in juxtaposition. 
But during the course of ages all these heterogeneous elements must have long 
been subjected to like influences, for all, or nearly all, the current Malay, Papuan, 
Indonesian, and Negrito languages seem to constitute a single linguistic family, 
and this family itself has been affiliated by Hodgson and Caldwell to the Dravidian 
of Southern India. 

As commonly understood, the term " Malay " is practically synonymous with 
" Mohammedan." The Indonesian, whether black, bronze, or fair, who accepts 
the Moslem faith and acquires a knowledge of the Arabic letters, becomes ij'so 
facto a " Malay." Still, the great bulk of the population belongs probably to the 
same stock. Without j)rejudging the question of the origin of the Malay race 
now dominant in the archipelago, it may be asked where was its home in the 
times anterior to the historic period ? Did the Malays .reach this region through 
the peninsula named from them, or had they any other centre of dispersion, as 
for instance, the plateaux in the interior of Sumatra ? According to Van der 
Tunk, their very name, interpreted by him in the sense of "wanderers," " vaga- 
bonds," would indicate their foreign origin. In all the lands occupied by them 
the banks of the rivers are " right" and " left " not according to the course of 
the stream seawards, but in the reverse way, as if the colonists had in all cases 
penetrated from the sea against the current into the interior. Marked resem- 
blances have also been observed between the Malay houses and their praus, so 
much so that in man}' places their villages i^reseut the appearance of stranded 

The insular as well as the continental ]\Ialays, although short, or at most 
of average height, are of robust constitution, with a ruddy brown, at times olive, 
complexion, and in the women, who are less exposed to the sun, approaching 
nearer to a decided yellow. The hair of the head — for all are nearly beardless — is 


black, hard, ani coarse to the touch ; the face rather round than oval and somewhat 
flat, with small nose but wide nostrils, thick lips, prominent cheek bones, and 
black eyes. But for their complexion and dress they might often be taken for 
Chinese. The resemblmce is even closer to the Khmers (Cambojans), with 
W'hose language the Malaj' presents a great analogy even in its grammatical 
structure.* Physically the Malays are distinguished by their well-balanced frames, 
delicate articulations, small hands and feet. 

Like the members of all other human families, the Malays of the different 
islands present marked diversities according to their pursuits or professions. The 
corsair or the trader cannot be judged by the same standard as the mechanic or 
the peasant. But the great bulk of the natives, occupied with husbandrj', are 
sociable if somewhat taciturn, of a kindly disposition, ever ready to render each 
other mutual aid, extremely courteous and considerate for the privileges and 
feelings of others. The labourer is careful not to awake his fellow workman by a 
touch of the hand; the creditor hesitates to remind the debtor of his obligations; 
altogether the demeanour and conversation of the Malays are certainly superior to 
those of their white rulers and pretended " civilisers." 

But although in some respects highly cultured and for centuries possessing a 
written literature, the Malays do not appear to be as richly endowed intellectually 
as other nations, notably the Papuans, who are at present greatly their inferiors 
in civilisation. According to those travellers who have associated most intimately 
with them, their chief mental defect is a certain feebleness of understanding, a 
lack of boldness or vigour of apprehension. They are timid, without power of 
independent action, hence disposed to submit unresistingly to foreign influences. 
Thus the}' formerly accepted Buddhism and Brahmanism at the hands of a few 
Hindu missionaries. Then came the Arab traders, who soon persuaded most of 
the popiilations to adopt Islam ; and now a handful of Dutch officials, supported 
only by a few mercenary troops, suffices to hold thirty millions of human beings in 
a state of subjection little removed from slavery. 


Apart even from the adjacent archipelagoes geologically dependent on Sumatra, 
this island is one of the largest in the world, being exceeded in extent only by 
Neiv Guinea, Borneo, Madagascar, Australia, and the polar regions of Greenland 
and the antarctic lands. Its surface, which has not yet been regularly surveyed, 
is estimated at over 175,000 square miles, or thirteen times the area of Holland, 
to which it is politically attached, if not yet completely reduced. In the northern 
highlands and forests it is still occupied by independent populations, and the 
interminable war with Atjeh, begun in 1873, has taught the Dutch people what it 
costs to attemjit the subjugation of a brave nation determined to defend its 
autonomy against all odds. 

Until the island is completely "pacified" it will be impossible to obtain 
* Fontaine, Aynionnier, Keane {.iiistralasiti). 


accurate returns for the whole population. But from the partial statistics already 
taken in the conquered provinces, combined with the systematic estimates made 
for the independent districts, it may be inferred that the number of inhabitants, 
although still comparatively slight, has considerably increased since the middle of 
the present century. According to Veth, the population of Sumatra and the 
western islands in 1 869 was somewhat less than two and a half millions ; at 
present it certainly exceeds three and a half millions, and possibly even four millions. 
Were it peopled as densely as Java, which its fertile soil and abundant resources 
might enable it even to surpass, Sumatra would have a population of not less than 
seventy millions. 

Sumatra presents some features in common with Madagascar. Both are nearly 
of the same extent and outward foim, that of an elongated oval ; both have one 
nearly rectilineal coast, that facing towards the high sea, and another, washed by 
shallower waters, of irregular outline and indented with creeks and inlets. These 
two seas encircling Sumatra, the boundless ocean to the west, the shallow island- 
studded waters to the east, are said bj' some etymologists to have earned for the 
island its Sanskrit name of Samantara, that is, " placed between two ; " but there 
can be little doubt that its name is really derived from Samudra, which in Sanskrit 
simply means the "sea," but which was the designation of an ancient kingdom on 
the north coast. 

During the predominance of Hindu influences Sumatra shared with the adajcent 
island the name of Jam, being distinguished from its neighbour by the epithet of 
" Little," not as being thought smaller than the " Great Java," but because of 
its inferior commercial importance. The native names of Sumatra are Pertjeh 
and Andalas. It remained unknown to Europeans till the first years of the 
sixteenth century. Ludovico di Barthema visited the north coast in 1505, and 
four years later a Portuguese fleet made its appearance in these waters. The 
Dutch, present masters of Sumatra, did not present themselves till the close of the 
century, in 1598. 

Physical Features of Sumatra. 

As in Madagascar, the highlands and mountain ranges, largely composed of 
stratified rocks resting on a granitic foundation, are developed not in the centre 
of the island, but for the most part in the vicinity of the western or oceanic coast. 
The orographic system, however, is of far more regular formation than in 
Madagascar, running from one extremity to the other along a scarcely deflected 
axis, presenting in some places only a single main range, in others breaking into 
two or three parallel chains. These ranges are connected by secondary transverse 
ridges enclosing verdant plateaux and cirques diversified by tranquil lakes and 
winding streams. In these upland regions, at a mean altitude of about 3,000 feet, 
are grouped the largest villages, and here the fertile soil is turned to best account. 
Here also the climate, far cooler than on the coastlands, is suitable even for 
Europeans, so that the elevated Sumatran tablelands would seem to combine all 
the advantages destined to render a country populous, rich, and prosperous. 


The Siimatran mountain svstcm certainly forms a soutliern ami more reo-ular 

extension of the Arrakauesc, which, terminating- on the mainland in the lieadiaiul 
of Cape Negrais, east of the Irran-addi, afterwards describes the elongated curve of 

VUI,. XIV. r; 


the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The Barisan Mountains, as the Suraatran 
ranges are collectively called, begin to the north of Atjeh with the islet of Pulo 
Brass (2,300 feet), on which has been erected the beacon known to mariners as the 
"Sumatra Lighthouse." Eastwards stands the insular mass of Pulo Wai (1,370 
feet), beyond which on the mainland rises the volcanic Selawa Janteu (5,650 feet), 
known to the Dutch as the Goudberg, or " Gold Mountain." This imposing and 
almost completely isolated cone is followed along the north coast by other crests, 
for the most part less elevated, and indicating the border of the still unexplored 
Achinese plateau. The range terminates near Diamond Cape (Jambu Ajer) in a 
Tafelberg, or Table Mountain, whose highest terrace stands at an altitude of 5,300 
feet above the sea. Bej'ond the hills on the coast is seen the summit, 4,000 feet 
high, of the still unvisited Samalanga volcano. 

But the main range, which has its origin to the west of the Goudberg and of 
the Atjeh valley, develops a much loftier series of crests along the oceanic 
seaboard. Here the Abong-Abong and Luseh, said to be volcanoes but not yet 
explored, are reported to attain the respective elevations of 11,300 and 12,200 

South of these lofty summits, whose cones rest on a crystalline formation some 
3,000 or 4,000 feet high, the mean altitude of the highlands is considerably 
reduced, and here the system branches into parallel chains enclosing the Toba 
plateau, and tao, or " sea," of like name. This basin, called also Silalahi, forms a 
lake of clear water 500 square miles in extent, whose shores are studded with 
hundreds of Batta villages. In its waters are mirrored the cones of extinct or 
still active volcanoes, one of which, the Dolok Simanabum, emitted dense vapours 
in 1881. On its flanks, as well as on those of a neighbouring volcano, may be 
distinguished from below a broad belt of a golden colour, consisting probably of 
crystallised sulphur. The Pusuk Bukit, another cone on the western margin of 
the lake, also possesses extensive sulphur deposits, whence the Battas draw their 
supplies. The island rising in the centre of the basin was itself a volcano, which 
has been attached by eruptive scoria) to the mainland and to the Pusuk Bukit. 
Lake Toba stretches in the direction from north-west to south-east, parallel with 
the main Simiatran axis. Its overflow is discharged to the south-east, towards 
the strait of Malacca. 

The amphitheatre of hills, whose spurs branch off towards the east coast, again 
converges south of the Toba plateau in a single main range, which resumes its 
normal direction parallel with the west Sumatran seaboard. In this part of the 
Barisan highlands some volcanic or other peaks exceed 5,000 feet in height. 
From one of the cones are emitted wreaths of sulphurous vapours, and another 
is pierced by a crater whose walls are lined with a ycllo-\\- incrustation of 

The range is flanked on the west by superb lateral spurs, which from a 
distance seem to be the dominant summits. Such are the Malintang (5,000 feet), 
and the Pasomau, which European geographers have named Mount Ophir, not on 
account of its gold mines, which have no existence, but in allusion to the natural 



wealth of the great tropical island. Being completely isolated in appearance, and 
rising just five miles north of the equator, about the exact centre of the oceanic 
coast of Sumatra, Ophir stands out as the most conspicuous insular landmark for 
mariners navi^atino; the neio^hbourino- waters. Hence till recently it was 
supposed to be the culminating point of the island, and a far greater altitude 
was assigned to it than the 9,600 feet to which modern explorers have reduced 
it. Mount Ophir has two chief summits besides several partly obliterated craters. 
Farther on the main range proper is interrupted by the broad valley of ihe 

The Merai'I Voi.caxic Ran'oe. 
Scale 1 ; 730,000. 




LTsl oF Ureen 

320 Feet and 

river Masang, south of which a volcanic ridge trends west and east ou 
the border of the Padang uplands. The westernmost volcano of this system has 
lost its mountainous aspect, nothing remaining except the vast periphery of the 
base, which now forms a wooded enclosure. The crest has disappeared, doubtless 
blown away by some tremendous explosion, and about half of the old crater 
(1,520 feet) is now flooded with the oval-shaped Lake Maninju, called also Danau, 
or the " Sea." This basin, which discharges westwards to the Indian Ocean, 
is fed by a few slightly thermal and alkaline springs nuuh frecjuentcd by the 


natives. Gaseous eruptions take place from time to time in the depths of the 
lake, and then the atmosphere becomes charged with sulphurous exhalations, while 
the fish perish in thousands. 

East of this lacustrine basin, which greatly resembles the Italian Lake Bolsena, 
rises the still perfect Singalang volcano (8,800 feet), scarcely less imposing than 
its eastern neighbour Merapi, whose highest peak attains an elevation of 9,400 
feet. This volcano, as indicated by its very name (Moro Api, " destroying fire "), 
is the most restless of the seven or eight still active burning mountains in Sumatra. 
None other has discharged such copious lava streams over the surrounding 
plains, and even during the present century it has been the centre of numerous 
disturbances. Its summit, of a red colour and destitute of vegetation, terminates 
in a group of three craters, each encircled by recent lavas. The local Malay legend 
has converted Merapi into a sort of Ararat, whence their first parents descended as 
the flood- waters subsided. 

The Sago volcano (7,450 feet) stands out like a bold landmark at the north-east 
corner of the Padang uplands. This region is throughout its whole extent a 
mountainous terrace-land somewhat clearly marked off by two longitudinal ridges, 
on the west the main Barisan range, en the east that of Ngalau Saribu. The 
plateau is likewise skirted on the south by another transverse chain, which like 
the northern ridge has also its "corner stone," the Talang or Sulasi volcano 
(8,440 feet), rising immediately above the west side of the city of Padang. 
Thermal waters and sulphurous vapours escape in abundance from crevasses of this 
mountain, which, however, does not terminate in a crater properly so called. 
On its flanks are rich sulphur beds extensively utilised by the natives. 

The lowest depression of the quadrilateral of outer ridges enclosing the Padang 
uplands is flooded by a lake, whose long axis is disposed in the same direction as 
Sumatra itself and its mountain system. The Siugkarah Sea, as this basin is 
called, teems with fish, yielding an abundant supply for a large number of the 
surrounding populations. Its level has been lowered some three feet by the 
destruction of a rocky barrier at the head of its emissary, the river Umbilien, 
which is one of the main branches of the Indragiri. Three other lakes, one a 
tributary of Singkarah, are disposed in terraces on the south-east slopes of Mount 

South of Talang the Barisan chain presents only a single ridge skirting 
the seaboard at a mean distance of fifteen miles from the ocean. In this section 
of the system, but to the east of the normal line of crests, rises the isolated 
Korintji (12,200 feet), known also by the name of Indrajjura, or " City of Indra " ; 
for this peak, which contends with Luseh for the first rank amongst the Sumatran 
summits, was supposed, like the great mountains of India, to be the everlasting 
abode of the gods. Vapours are almost constantly emitted from its crater, a 

* Lakes of the Padang plateau : — 

Aie^i in Greatest 

Altitude. Square Miles. Depth. 

ManinJH 520 feet 40 510 feet 

Sing-kavah 1,100 ,, 45 890 „ 


chasm visited by Veth and Van Hasselt, aud by them described as developing a 
vast circumference and several hundred yards deep. 

Like the Padaug volcanoes, this majestic mountain has also its little lacustrine 
system in the vallej-s excavated at its base. Here rises a torrent, which after 
skirting the east slope of the volcanic chain falls into the danau or "sea" of 
Korintji, whence an emissary escapes towards the river Jambi. Farther south 
follow other volcanoes disposed in a line with the general axis of the island, but 
for the most part extinct. Kaba and Dempo, however, are still the theatre of 
frequent and violent convulsions. Kaba (5,500 feet), which is visible thirty 
miles to the north-east of Benkulen, towering above the Suikerbrood (" Sugar- 
loaf"), terminates in two craters, one inaccessible, and both rent by crevasses, whence 
issue jets of vapour. In 1875 Kaba entered on a period of activity, the eruptions 
lasting three years, and covering the surrounding hills and valleys with sand mixed 
with chemical substances fatal to plants and animals alike. Even now, whenever 
the sandy banks of the neighbouring streams give way the fish die in thousands. 

Dempo (10,560 feet), which rises some sixty miles to the south-east of 
Benkulen, is also the scene of constant disturbances. But Sawah, one of the old 
craters, no longer bursts into flames, so that the natives are able to ajiproach 
without danger and offer their sacrifices in the midst of tlie heaths and rhododen- 
drons. The new crater, named Merapi like the great Padang volcano, stands 8-iO 
feet higher up, and is the abode of the deta for whom the offerings are intended. 
Some sixty feet below the circular rim is seen a lakelet sparkling like a sheet of 
quicksilver ; presently a black speck in the centre of the glittering surface begins 
to expand and assume the form of a funnel, in which the water suddenly dis- 
appears. In a few minutes the rocks resound as with the rumbling of thunder ; 
the din grows nearer, followed by a flash as of lightning, and the water, trans- 
formed to vapour, issues in a dense jet from the crater, into which it again soon 
subsides. Thus every fifteen or twenty minutes the lake vanishes and reappears 
in the form of a magnificent geyser some hundred feet high. 

Farther south another ranau* or " sea," floods an elevated cirque (1,720 feet), 
which seems to have been an old crater, and which is encircled on three sides by 
extinct volcanoes. It is extremely deep in the centre, and in one place thermal 
.springs from the neighbouring Mount Siminung raise the temperature too high 
for animal life. 

Southwards the Barisan system again bifurcates, one branch continuing in the 
normal direction south-eastwards to Cape Tjina (China), where it merges in low 
hills over against Princes Island and the south-west extremity of Java. The 
other or volcanic branch trends more to the east, where it is indicated from afar 
by the lofty summits of Mounts Besagi, Sekinjau, Tebah, and Tangkamus (7,520 
feet). This last, better known as the Keizers Piek, or "Emperor's Peak," rises 
near the southern extremity of Sumatra, on the Bay of Samangka, and is probably 
connected by a submarine fault with the islet of Tabuan. On the mainland the vol- 

* RanaUy danati^ tao are various dialectic forms of the same word, meaning sea, or any large expanse of 



canic chain is continued by Mount Tangka (3,460 feet), round Lampong Bay to the 
south-eastern headland of Sumatra, and thence through a line of islets and reefs 
across the Sunda Strait, here only sixteen miles wide, to the opposite coast of Java. 
The extinct cone of Eaja Bassa (4,460 feet), southernmost member of the chain 
of sixty-six Sumatran volcanoes, does not lie in the normal direction of the main 
axis, and seems to have originally stood on an island afterwards attached to the 
mainland, either by upheaval or moi'e probably by a shower of scorias and ashes. 
Raja Bassa forms part of a transverse volcanic ridge, whose axis intersects that of 

Fig. 29. — Khaeatau and Neiqhbotjrixg Islets befoke the Eruption. 
Scale 1 : 150,000. 

the Sumatran system, for it runs in the direction from north-cast to south-west. 
To this scarcely perceptible ridge belong the two islands of Sebesi and Krakatau 
in the Sunda Strait, and the system is also perhaps continued under the Indian 
Ocean for some six hundred miles to the Keeling Islands, which lie in a direct line 
with Raja Bassa and Krakatau. 

But yet another volcanic fault intersects that of Sumatra and Krakatau in the 
Sunda Strait. This is the great Javanese system, running due west and east, and 
marked by so many formidable igneous cones. Thus at this focus of undei-ground 
forces the terrestrial crust is, so to say, starred with tremendous fissures, and here 
the destructive agencies have at times, and even quite recently, assumed a character 
of stupendous grandeur. 




Till recentlj' Krakatau, rising to a height of 2,270 feet, was hailed with joy by 
mariners crossing the strait, and vessels confidently rode at anchor under its 
shelter in depths of from 25 to ;30 fathoms. The last recorded outburst, that of 
1680, had already long been forgotten by the natives. But in the month of JNIay, 
1883, the fiery demon again awoke : on one of the northern shoulders the ground 
was rent asunder, flames burst forth, detonations and discharges of vapours and 
ashes followed in rapid succession. 

But so far the display differed in no respect from similar manifestations 

Fisr. 30. — Krakatau axd Neighboijeixo Islets after the Eeuptiox. 
Scale 1 : 150,000. 



80 to 320 

320 to 960 

960 i'cet and 

observed in so many parts of Indonesia, and excursionists from Batavia even 
landed on the island and approached the crater. But after three months of 
groanings and rumblings the volcano put forth all its strength, and in a few 
hours the whole topography of the Simda Strait was changed. At Batavia, 
90 miles distant, the uproar was so terrific that an eruption was supposed 
to have occurred in the immediate vicinity, and every moment the ground was 
expected to open. In all the surrounding waters, as far as the China Sea, in 
the Bay of Bengal, throughout half of the Indian Ocean as far as Rodrigues, 
the detonations were clearly hoard, and every wht re the people wondered 



what mighty fleets were engaged in deadly combat in the neighbouring seas. 
The commotion shook the atmosphere for a vast space, estimated at the four- 
teenth part of the planetary surface ; the underground mutterings heard in the 
American island of Caiman Brae, almost at the antipodes of Krakatau, may 
even have proceeded from the same source. The clouds of ashes ejected to a 
height of sixteen, or according to one report twenty-one miles, fell in dense 

Fig. 31. — Range OF Dispebsion of the Keakatau Ashep. 
Scale 1 : 15,000,000. 

c/f//vA seA. 

Essb oF 105° 

masses over a vast space round about the island, which had been blown to pieces. 
Within a range of nine miles the bed thus formed was over three feet thick ; in 
the interior of Sumatra, ninety miles off, some places were covered two or three 
inches deep, and the surface of the water was still powdered in the Indian Ocean 
beyond the Keeling Islands, a distance of 720 miles. The debris was wafted as 
far as the shores of Madagascar, and the displacement of rocks in the form of 



ashes and pumice was estimated at as much as 630 billions of cubic feet. The 
whole terrestrial atmosphere would even ajjpear to have been charged with the 
impaljDable volcanic dust as far as the upper limits of the aerial spaces, at least 
according to Norman Lockyer's theory, attributing the marvellous afterglows of 
the following autumn months to the igneous particles ejected by Krakatau on 
August 2Gth, 1883.* The seas also were agitated around the whole circumference 
of the globe, as attested by the readings of the mareographs at various oceanic 
stations, and in the Indian Ocean by the great marine wave which in thirteen 
hours was propagated as far as the Cape of Good Hope. 

The reports of the fugitives from the threatened villages and of the crews of 

vessels near the scene of the distui-bance created an impression that the field of 
destruction had even been still more widespread. But after the ashes were 
dispersed, and skippers could again venture into the Sunda Strait, the spectacle 
revealed to them seemed none the less harrowing and bewildering. The coast 
towns of Anjer and Tjaringi on the Javanese side, Beneawang and Telokh-Betong 
on that of Sumatra, had disappeared, while no trace remained of the numerous 
villages lately dotted along both shores. The cocoanut forests which fringed the 
seaboard to the foot of the hills had been swept clean away ; a huge wave 100 to 
120 feet high, caused by the sinking of the volcano, had dashed against the coast, 

* Times, December 8th, 1883. 


cariying away headlands and excavating new inlets. All the work.s of man were 
destroyed, and over forty thousand persons, overtaken during the terrible morning, 
" blacker than the night," were overwhelmed in the deluge of waters rolling in 
from the sea, or in the showers of mud and ashes falling from above. Within the 
limits of the strait one man alone, a solitary lighthouse-keeper perched on his 
watch-tower 130 feet above an isolated rock, escaped scatheless in the midst of the 
surrounding pother. So dense was the darkness that he failed to notice the 
mighty wave that submerged the lighthouse all but his lantern. 

Of Krakatau itself nothing remained but the southern volcano ; all the 
northern heights, or about two-thirds of the island, some eight or ten miles in 
circumference, had been blown to pieces, giving place to an abyss where the 
sounding-line a thousand feet long failed to touch the bottom. From the 
breached wall of the southern volcano rolled a continual avalanche of stones, while 
the dust from the crumbling remains rose in clouds to the sky. But if some lands 
had vanished, others, formed by vast heaps of pumice and ashes, were raised from 
the bed of the sea. The island of Verlaten was more than doubled in size, and 
heights appeared where the plummet had lately revealed depths of 230 feet. Other 
islands, such as Sebesi, which had recently been covered with forests and human 
habitations, now presented to the view nothing but a bare surface of whitish rock. 

To the new islands were added the floating masses of pumice, forming bars at 
the entrance of the baj's and for weeks and months blocking the passage to the 
shipping. Gradually the action of the waves and marine currents swej t the strait 
clear of these floating islands and heaps of emerged scoriaj ; but the submarine 
crater which was opened to the north of Krakatau had held its ground. The 
geological .studies made on the spot show that this crater hod previously existed, 
and that the northern j)art of Krakatau was on the contrary of recent formation. 
What remains of the volcano and adjacent islets of Verlaten and Lang are the 
three outer fragments — the tripod, so to say — of a mountain over 6,500 feet high, 
which at some former time rose above the present eruptive crater. 

Rivers of Sumatra. 

Although .slower than the underground forces in their geological work, the 
Sumatran rivers have been more powerful agents in modifying the aspect of the 
land. The territory shown by its horizontal alluvial formation to be the creation 
of the running waters may be estimated at nearly one-half of the whole island. 
The sedimentary rocks are seen disposed like strands along the base of the 
coralline limestone cliffs, which formed the primitive coastline on the eastern 
slope of the Barisan uplands. Over two-thirds of the eastern seaboard is of quite 
recent geological formation, and is still continually growing by the addition of 
fresh deposits. 

On the west side of the island the action of the streams is far less considerable. 
The catchment basins are not here of siiflficient extent to convey seawards any 
great quantity of sedimentary matter. Nevertheless, even on this slo^ie the 


alluvial lands are also of great extent. The enormous volume of rain water 
precipitated on both slopes of Sumatra explains the exceptional importance of this 
fluvial action. On an average Padung receives a mean annual rainfall of about 
150 inches ; Palembang, on the opposite side, is still more copiously watered, and 
all the heaviest downpours fall on the advanced slofies of the mountains, so 
that little is lost by evaporation or infiltration before the streams reach the 

The Asahan, which receives the overflow of Lake Toba, belongs to the eastern 
slope. Farther south follows the Rokau, which enters the strait of Malacca 
through two mudd}' estuaries. It has a course of about 120 miles, nearly half of 
which winds through low-lying lands created and levelled bj' itself. Both the 
Siak and the Kampar disembogue in the labj-rinth of marine channels washing the 
muddy shores of the archipelago lying to the west of Singapore. Although 
navigable for over 60 miles from their mouth, these two streams wind through 
almost uninhabited plains, whose climate is fatal to strangers. 

Beyond the Kampar follows the Indragiri, which like it rises near the west 
coast on the Padang jjlateau. After traversing Lake Singkarah it flows under 
the name of the Umbilien through early Tertiary formations rich in carboniferous 
beds. Farther on it escapes from a region of plateaux through a series of falls and 
rapids, and after running for some distance parallel with the Kampar, mingles its 
waters with those of Amphitrite Bay. Near its mouth the southern and much 
smaller basin of the Reteh also contains some carboniferous rocks. Vessels ascend 
the Indragiri for many miles inland, but not as far as the neighbourhood of the 

The Jambi, whose farthest headstreams rise north and south of Indrapura, 
culminating point of the island, has the largest area of drainage and rolls down 
the greatest volume of water. At the town of Jambi, 60 miles above its mouth, it 
is nearly 500 j^ards broad and over 16 feet deep, at low water, and during the 
floods its volume is more than doubled. Steamers drawing three feet ascend the 
Jambi and its main branch, the Hari, for 360 miles from the sea, while small 
canoes penetrate 100 miles higher up. 

The Musi, or Palembang river, which also rises on the uplands near the west 
coast, collects the waters of the eastern slope for a space of about 200 miles before 
entering the low-lying plains. Here it divides below the city of Palembang into 
several branches, which ramify into endless channels and backwaters amid the 
surrounding swamps. The Susang, or main branch, which falls into the Bangka 
Strait near its north entrance, preserves sufilcient water to give access to large vessels 
during the floods, and to smaller craft throughout the rest of the year. But the 
other branches all merge in other streams to the right and left, developing shallow 
lagoons, expanding into broad morasses, or mingling with marine waters through the 
dense mangrove forests. These half submerged, uninhabited and, for the most 
part, almost uninhabitable tracts cover a total area of some 5,000 square miles. 

According to the local traditions, which however maj- have been inspired by 
the undeniably rapid encro;:chments of the land on the sea, the whole of this 



region of the Musi delta has been formed during the historic period. Even the 
city of Palembang, now Ij'ing in the interior far above the estuary, is said to have 
been originally founded on the coast itself at the mouth of the river. The man- 
groves, by which these low-lying tracts are overgrown, contribute to the enlarge- 
ment of the dry land by arresting the sedimentar}' matter amid their branches. 

Fig. 33. — Alldtial Plains of the Musi Basin. 
Scale 1 : 4,000,000. 

— t" M JNT01<^-> n'"^- I 'I 

Old Shore -line. 

Recent formations. 

and by shedding their fruits beyond the river banks in the muddy waters, where 
they take root. 

The West and East Sumatran Islands. 

West of Sumatra runs a chain of islands disposed parallel with the west coast. 
Abysses over 1,000 fathoms deep separate this chain from the Nicobar Archipelago ; 
but with Sumatra it is connected by the incline of the now submerged intervening 
slopes. These islands form, so to say, an advanced coastline of the neighbouring 
mainland, and consist of the same Tertiary formations as those of the adjacent 
shores. Lying on a marine bed at a mean depth of not more than 60 fathoms, 
they stand on the very edge of the submai'ine Indonesian plateaux. Immediately 



to the west the oceanic bed sinks rapidly, and within 60 miles of the islands the 
sounding line reveals depths of over 2,500 fathoms. 

Beginning in the north-west with the island of Babi, the chain terminates in 
the south-east with Engano,* over 720 miles distant. The isolated islet of Christ- 
mas, 300 miles farther on, might also perhaps be regarded as belonging to the 

same system, lying as it does in a line with its axis, but this point is rendered 
somewhat doubtful by the distance and the great depths of the intervening waters. 
Excluding this rock, the western islands, which beyond doubt depend geographi- 
cally and geologically on Sumatra, have a total superficial area of about 6,000 

• Telanjang of the Malays, Taigoeka of the native.'), and probably the Engano, or • ' Deception 
Island," of the Spaniards. 


square miles, with a collective population estimated at three hundred thousand. 
On the other hand, the islands of the east coast, resting on the common Indo- 
nesian submarine plateau, are for the most part distinct from Sumatra, and 
require to be studied apart. The low-lying alluvial lands separated by shallow 
channels from the scarcely emerged f)lains which have been created by the 
Sumatran rivers, are certainl}' natural dependencies of the great island. Such 
are Rupat, Bengkalis, Padang, Eangsang, Rantau, and others lying about the 
mouths of the rivers. But those situated farther seaward, and of a hilly and even 
mountainous character, are of diiferent origin, belonging physically to the Malay 
Peninsula. Like that region, they are of granitic structure, with surrounding 
laterite beds. Moreover they lie exactly in a line with the main axis of the 
peninsula, of which they constitute a southern extension now broken into frag- 
ments by marine erosions. 

But while the sea destroys in one direction, the rivers reconstruct in another. 
They carry in solution the debris of the Sumatran highlands, depositing the 
sediment to the right and left in beds steadily advancing seawards, and thus 
gradually enlarging the great island towards the east. Unless the marine 
currents undo this work and keep the straits open by their scouring action, these 
must at last be silted up, and then the eastern archipelagoes of Riouw and 
Lingga, with Bangka and its satellites, will become attached to the Sumatran coast, 
lost as its were, like erratic boulders, amid the sands and clays of recent formation. 

Flora and Fauna of Sumatra. 

Like the rest of Indonesia, Sumatra lies within the zone of alternating mon- 
soons, the south-eastern or regular trade wind from Ma}' to Sej)tember, and the north- 
western, bringing most of the moisture, and prevailing from November to March. 

The Sumitran flora and fauna are distinguished from those of the adjacent 
lands by a large number of curious species. Such are the great raJfJesup, the 
gigantic arum {ainoyphophaUiis tiffejium^, growing to a height of over IG feet ; 
and those astonishing fig-trees, whose branches bury themselves in the ground, 
and then throw off their fruit, like so many small mushrooms. The character of 
the flora changes gradually southward. Thus, while the Merkus pine prevails in 
certain highland districts north of the Equator, no conifers at all are met farther 
south. Nevertheless, certain contrasts between Sumatran and Javanese floras on 
either side of the Sunda Straits are still striking enough to have attracted the 
attention of botanists. Characteristic of Sumatra, as compared with Java, is the 
great relative extent of the tracts overgrown with along and (jlaga, grasses over 
three feet high, which stifle the young arboreal growths, and exhaust the soil 
wherever they become predominant. In Java they are arrested at about 3,000 feet, 
but in Sumatra they descend to within 800 feet of sea-level, and during the 
historic period their range has been much increased by careless husbandry. 

Of all the Indonesian lands, this island abounds most in graminiferous species 
possessing great economic value. Here flourishes the majestic dnjahalanops 


camphor, for the produce of which the Chinese formerly paid its weight in gold ; 
from this region Europe also received its first consignments of gutta-percha {geta 
pertja), of which famQy there are scTeral varieties. Sumatra was also probablj- the 
centre of dispersion of the cinnamon j)lant, of which it possesses ten species, a 
larger number than occurs in any other region. 

The Sumatran fauna differs even more than its flora from that of the neigh- 
bouring island. It possesses the orang-utan, confined however to a district on 
the north-east coast, besides other remarkable apes, such as the galeopithecus, or 
flving lemur. The elephant, exterminated in Java, is still common in the 
northern jungle, where, according to the natives, two quite distinct species are 
found. The small species of rhinoceros met in the Sumatran forests also differs 
from the large Javanese variety ; but, notwithstanding the statement of Marsden, 
the hippopotamus does not appear to be a member of the Sumatran fauna, which, 
including domestic animals, comprises, according to Hagen, sixty species of 
mammals and one hundred and twenty of birds. 

Inhabitants of Sumatra. 

The Malay populations of Sumatra are diversely intermingled with other 
elements presenting considerable contrasts in the different pro^-inces in their 
social usages and degrees of culture. Thus the Achinese, or people of Atjeh, in 
the extrtme north, regard themselves as a nation quite distinct from the other 
islandei's. Their nobles claim Arab descent, and really seem to be of mixed origin. 
For the five centuries preceding the arrival of the Portuguese, the trade of 
Indonesia was largely in the hands of the Arabs, who intermarried with the native 
women. B3' the end of the twelfth century the kingdom of Atjeh had embraced 
Islam, and later became a centre of Moslem activity, with its theologians, who 
cultivated Arabic letters, and its sectaries, who preached a new pantheistic creed, 
dying for their faith like the martjTS of the western world. 

Although in recent times Arab influence has much diminished, the Achinese 
have preserved numerous usages introduced by their instructors ; and their Malay 
dialect, written in the Arabic character, has been affected by many foreign 
elements. The nobles wear the flowing robs and turban, like the merchants of 
Jeddah, although the women do not go veiled. 

The Achinese, to whom the virtues of courage and industry are not denied, 
are stigmatised as cruel and treacherous, like all peoples who dare to defend their 
liberties. Skilful agriculturists, they raise heavy crops of rice and sweet potatoes, 
deriving from the soU the resources which have enabled them to maintain the 
struggle against the Dutch for fifteen years. Like the Hindus and Indo-Chinese, 
they are said to have succeeded in taming the elephant, employing him as a beast 
of burden. They also display much skill in working the precious metals, and as 
silk and cotton weavers, and construct solid vessels with which thny carry on an 
extensive traffic with the surrounding lands, and occasionally scour the seas as 
dreaded corsairs. The chief centres of their trade bcvond Sumatra are Pcnau^ 




-Oeang Batta. 

and Singapore, whence they import the opium, of which they have become 
inveterate smokers. 

The Battas. 

South of Atjeh the hilly plateau is occupied by still independent peoples 
partly converted to Islam, such as the Gayus, of whom little is known beyond the 
name, and who are said to dwell on the banks of the freshwater lake Laut Tawar- 
Beyond them are the mj'sterious Alas, and the Batta or Battak* peof)le, centred 

about the Lake Toba 
basin. According to 
the missionary Nom- 
menscn, they num- 
ber altogether about 
three hundred thou- 
sand, divided into two 
distinct groups, the 
northern Battas, who 
trade with the Achin- 
ese, and the southern, 
whose relations are 
mainly with Deli and 
Sibogha. Beyond the 
lacustrine region, 
which they regard as 
the cradle of their race, 
they are widely spread, 
as far south as Mount 
Ophir and eastwards 
to the mouth of the 
Bila. The natives of 
the Tapanuli district on 
the western slope are 
also Battas, reduced 
by the so-called Padri 
or " Fathers," fana- 
tical Mussidmans, who gave them the choice of the sword or the Koran. 
Altogether the jDure or mixed Battas of the mainland, and exclusive of the Nias 
islanders, said also to belong to the same stock, are estimated at about a million. 

The pure Batta type resembles that of the Bornean Dyaks and " Alfurus " of 
Celebes, affiliated by most anthropologists to the primitive races allied to the 
Polynesians, who formerly peopled Indonesia, and who, after expelling or exter- 
minating the Negritos, were in their turn driven out or partly absorbed by the 
Malays. The Battas of the plateau are much fairer and taller, with more abun- 

* Batta, singular ; Battak, plui'al. 



dant hair and beard than the Malays of the coastlands, while the intervening 
populations present ever_v shade of transition between the two extremes. Although 
the national name has been referred to the Sanskrit Bhata, or " Savage," they 
must nevertheless be regarded as a civilised people, bearing even some resemblance 
in their carriage and features to their former Hindu instructors. But Indian 
influences, still active in mediaeval times, have been for the most part gradually 
replaced bv those of the Mohammedan Malays, and especially of the northern 
Achinese. Some Christian missionaries, especially Germans, have also been at 
work amongst them, 

1 i '.-1 Tiji li Fifc. 30.-Orano Atjeh. 

but with little result " 

beyond the sjjread of 
scepticism at the spec- 
tacle of so many con- 
flicting religions. 

In 1867 the Euro- 
peans first penetrated 
to Lake Toba, the 
heart of the Batta 
country. But when 
their visit was re- 
newed six years later, 
a national council was 
held to discuss the 
question whether the 
punishment of death 
should not be inflicted 

on the strangers by ^ 

whom their " holy ^ 

land " had been dese- *■ 

crated. Now, however, 
they have grown ac- sjj/^ 

customed to the ap- ' .= ~^ 

pearance of the whites, ' ',t F ^^^ffS^""'''^~i^' 

and no longer throw ^i""™ 

any obstacles in the 

way of their explorations. In 188-'3 the communities dwelling on the south side 
of Lake Toba were even obliged to yield submission to the Dutch arms. 

Despite these foreign Hindu, Moslem, and Christian influences, the Batta 
civilisation still preserves some remarkable original features. Although engaged, 
like their neighbours, with tillage, cultivating both rice and maize, they are specially 
distinguished as stockbreeders, and possess numerous herds of horses and buffaloes, 
besides goats and swine. These are fattened for the national feasts, the oidiuary 
diet being limited to fruits, com, and roots. The islanders eschew the use of 
betel, so dear to the other Malays, but they are great tobacco smokers, and masti- 

VOL. XIV. 11 



cute a mixture of lime and gambir leaves {loicaria gamUr). Tliey neither tattoo 
the body nor practise circumcision, but mark the arrival of the youth at the state 
of manhood by filing their teeth. 

The industries are well developed, the men being skilful workers in iron and 
jewellers, the women weavers and potters. They build elegant houses, some of 
which resembk Swiss chalets, with two stories rising above a ground floor reserved 
for the domestic animals. In soni« districts, when a man wants a house the whole 
communit}' len-ds a hand to build one, and in several jjlaces a number of families 

lUg. 37. — Laxe Toba and the Batta Countey. 
Scale 1 : 926,000. 

reside together under one roof, a sort of stronghold surrounded by palisades to 
prevent surprises. Each village possesses a sort of " town-hall," where all valu- 
able objects are kept and where strangers are publiclj^ entertained. Amongst the 
most carefull}^ preserved treasures are books and other records, carved on wood, or 
inscribed on bark or leaves, for most of the Battas can read and write. But unlike 
the coast Malays, who have adopted the Arabic characters, they still preserve the 
old alphabet introduced by the Hindus, but written from right to left on smooth 
bark, or from bottom to top on the bundles of reeds that constitute their archives. 


The language, which contains many Sanskrit words, diifcrs eor.sidprably from 
the coast Malay, and possesses a richer vocabulary. It moreover comprises special 
forms, such as the jargons of the women, magicians, and thieves. The young men 
and women correspond by letters written on foliage, and forwarded through a 
postal system which utilises as letter-boxes the bollow trunks of trees at the 
crossings of the highways. 

The Batta commune constitutes an autonomous group repre.'sented rather than 
administered by a rajah or pauuisiik, and deliberating in common. Village groups 
have also been developed, forming so many little rejjublics connected together by 
a federal union ; lastly, traces of an ancient kingdom seem to bave survived in the 
expressions of almost religious veneration till lately lavished on a prince resident 
at Bakara, a large village at the south-west end of Lake Toba, recently conquered 
by the Dutch. 

All the members of each community are supposed to be connected by the ties 
of kindred, although not holding equal social rank, and although the lower classes 
may even be pledged or sold by order of council for debts, crimes, or offences. 
The penal code is severe, beheading being till lately, and possibly still, the sentence 
pronounced for grave crimes, such as treason and armed revolt, but not simple 
murder or homicide. An extraordinary and altogether unique provision of the 
written code was that the outraged community should avenge itself by eating the 
criminal, who in some cases was even devoured alive. His nearest kin, as mem- 
bers of the commonwealth, had to share in the feast, and even supply the salt, 
lime-juice, and other condiments. But except as acts of justice, cannibalism was 
not practised, nor were women ever subjected to this treatment. At present the 
Battas assert that the custom has fallen into complete abeyance, but on this point 
their veracity is open to suspicion. There is reason to think that slaves are also des- 
patched, to attend their masters beyond the grave, and that they are obliged first to 
masquerade at the pit's mouth. According to Junghahn and otber writers, anthro- 
pophagy is of relatively recent introduction, a statement, however, which is at 
variance with the testimonj^ of the old writers. Arab tradition and the first Euro- 
pean visitors describe the Sumatran highlanders as cannibals devouring the infirm 
and aged. As soon as they felt themselves incapable of work, the " grandfathers " 
hung by their arms from the branch of a tree, while the family and neighbours 
danced round about, shouting, " ^Yhen the fruit is ripe it falls." And when it 
did fall they fell upon it, chopping it into " mincemeat." Such feasts were 
usually held in the season when the limes ripened. 

The least mercy is shown to prisoners of war, regarded as guilty of " rebellion 
against the conqueror." Most wars are, moreover, of a very sanguinary nature. 
The Batta jurisprudence not permitting a commime to be enslaved or deprived 
of its land, the only way of being revenged on it is by killing off a large number ; 
and the festoons of human heads decorating the rajahs' residences siifEciently 
attest the zeal with which the work of extermination is carried out. In several 
districts this internecine strife checks the growth of the population, which is 
farther reduced by the prevalent practice of abortion. Late marriages are the 

H 2 



rule, owing to the high price of the bride, although another form of union, of 
matriarchal origin, also exists, according to which the husband is purchased by 
the wife. Being regarded as merely so much movable property, he may even be 
seized for debt, and bequeathed as a legacy to the testator's heirs. 

Traces survive of the Hindu religions, for the Battas recognise a triune diety, 
Creator, Preserver, and Destroyer ; and also admit the existence of other divinities 
and genii, to whom they give the slightly modified Indian name of dipbata (devate). 

Fig. 38. — Inhabitants of Sumatra. 
Scale 1: 15,0fK100O. 

But religious worship enters very little into their daily life. They can scarcely 
be said to have any regular ceremonial, and there are only one or two temples 
in the country. The natives are mostly satisfied with invoking the little idols 
they always carry about with them in pouches, and are most concerned in circum- 
venting the evil spirits by ingenious devices. Family groups and whole com- 
munes have been known to secure the protection of some powerful patron by 
burying a child alive, under the belief that its spirit will henceforth watch over 
their plantations. Chiefs and nobles are supposed to survive in the after-world. 


On the d;iy of their death a rice-field is sown, and at the harvest, presided over by 
the corpse, a feast is given in honour of the dejjai-ted, now assumed to have taken 
his place amongst the benevolent genii. After the feast he is buried near the 
house of which he has become the guardian spirit. 

To the Batta family are generally supposed to belong the little wild tribes of 
Orang-Ulus and Orang-Liibus, who occupy the upland valleys north of Mount 
Ophir, and who appear never to have been brought within Hindu influences. 
They have been compared with the most savage inhabitants of Borneo, like them 
going almost naked, dwelling in huts made of branches or in the hollow trunks 
of trees, and armed with the blow-pipe and poisoned darts. They cultivate no 
arts, not even that of husbandry, living mainly on fruits, roots, snakes, and insects, 
besides the rice and salt deposited by the traders in certain fixed places in ex- 
change for the local produce brought thither by the " men of the woods." They 
have a large breed of dogs, who warn them of the approach of the traders, and 
scent out any tigers lurking about. 

The MEXAXGKAii\os axd other Simatean Malays. 

The ancient kingdom of Menangkabao, which succeeded the still older Hindu 
empire of Adityavarma, comprises south of the Batta country the most densely 
peopled part of Sumatra in the hilly region of the Padang uplands, and on the 
west slope of the island. The true form of the word is Mpnang-Karhau, or the 
" Victory of the Buffalo," which is explained by the local legend of a fight between 
a Suraatran and a JaA"anese buffalo terminating in the triumph of the former. 
This tradition may perhaps symbolise some conflict, or even a long struggle 
between the natives and the intruders from the neighbouring island. The natives 
ultimately triumphed, and their customs consequently prevailed over those of the 
Javanese and Hindus. They are at present regarded as Malays in a pre-eminent 
sense, and their speech is held to be the purest form of the Malay language. 

Despite their conversion to Islam and the conquest of Menangkabao by the 
Dutch, the old institutions of confederate village communes and of matriarchy 
still hold their ground. The population is divided into sulais or clans, each with 
its own chief, chosen from some privileged family, and its council, consisting of all 
male adults. All the village chiefs are again grouped in a district council, the 
district thus organised usually taking its name from the number of kotas or 
villages of which it is constituted — the " Seven," the " Nine," the " Ten," the 
'• Twenty," the " Fifty " Kotas, and so on. 

No man can marry within his own kota or sutu, so that unions are all essen- 
tially exogamous. The husband helps his wife or wi\es in the management of the 
household and in cultivating the land, but his children belong to the mother, and 
must remain in the maternal village to inherit the maternal propertJ^ The father's 
inheritance, on the other hand, goes to his sister's children in his native village. 
Such is the uii<l(Uifj-iiiid((it(j, or matriarchal law, and the survival of these institu- 


tioiis, so opposed to the spirit of Islam, shows what little influence is really 
exercised by the oiBcial religion of the country. 

Nevertheless, at the beginning of this century the rigid sect of the Orang 
Puti, or "White Men," also known through their proselytising zeal as " Padri," 
like the Portuguese missionaries, became powerful enough to overthrow the king- 
dom. About 1820 these eastern " AVahabites," whose reform consisted chiefly 
in iibstaiuiug from tobacco, betel, and strong drinks, reduced the high-priest and 
King of Menangkabao to such extremities that he was fain to call in the aid of the 
Dutch, at first allies, presently masters. 

The Jlalay inhabitants of the upland vallej's and plateaus south of Padang 
greatly resemble the Battas, without, however, showing any traces of cannibalism. 
The Korintjiors (Korinches) settled about Mount Indrapura; the Rejanges 
(Piejangs), " guardians of the frontier" between the provinces of Palembang and 
Benkulen ; the Pasumahs of the district dominated by the Dempo volcano ; lastly, 
towards the southern extremity of Sumatra, the Abungers, or " Highlanders," and 
the LamjDougers, or •' Lowlanders," all appear to have formerly enjoyed a high 
degree of civilisation. From their ancestors they have inherited a writing system 
derived, like that of the Battas, from the Sanskrit characters, and all can still read 
and write. 

In the forests here and there occur colossal statues, which, strange to say, 
present neither the Hindu nor the Malay type. Amongst several Rejang tribes 
the mothers flatten the nose and compress the skull of their children, and the 
practice of filing the teeth is very prevalent. According to Van Hasselt, the 
Lampong Abung peoples come from Menangkabao. Amongst them marriage is 
also exogamous, and the price of the wife is relatively so high that the husband 
takes years to work off the charge. But on the other hand she becomes his slave, 
and the jewels and coins with which she is decked on the wedding day all belong 
to him. Later he also indemnifies himself by the sale of his own daughters. The 
eldest brother is required to take over all the widows of the family ; but the 
women of the iijjper classes usuall3f marry, as in Menangkabao, according to the 
matriarchal system, and retain possession of the land and offsj)ring. In the coast- 
towns, where Islam has prevailed over the primitive heathendom, unions are 
contracted in the Arab fashion. The married alone are buried with honour, for 
they are the " parents of the people ;" all others are thrown to the bush. 

The natives of the Siak, Jambi, and Palembang districts, on the east coast, are 
for the most part immigrants from the neighbouring islands, being the descendants 
of traders who founded factories about the river mouths. On these coastlands 
Hindu influences long survived, thanks to the proximity of Java, whence colonists 
continued to settle in Palembang down to the middle of the sixteenth century. 
In general the usages on this seaboard differ little from the Javanese, and even 
the current speech retains many words introduced from the neighbouring island. 

In the interior dwell a few thousand Orang-Kabu, believed to represent the 
aborigines gradually driven inward from the coast. They lead a wandering life 
in the midst of the forests ; but physically they differ little from their Malay 


neighbours, except tliat they are more robust and of lighter complexion, and their 
superiors in the qualities of truthfulness, honesty, and courage. Armed with a 
simple stake they boldly attack the tiger, but, like the northern Orang-Lubu, 
avoid all personal contact with the Chinese and ^Sfalay dealers. The Kubu 
language is closely related to the current Malay speech. 

The Nias axd ME^•TA^\■EY Isi..a.nders. 

The natives of the West Sumatran islands are of diverse origin. Those of 
Simalu (Babi) in the north descend from Menangkabao immigrants mixed with 
Achinese blood. The Banjak islanders are also sprung from Malays and 
Achinese, who arrived from the mainland about two hundred years ago. Bangkara, 
the westernmost member of the group, is still uninhabited, and is even avoided, 
through dread of the " evil spirits " by whom it is supposed to be peopled. 

The Ono Niha, or "children of men," as the Nias islanders are called, number, 
according to Von Rosenberg, about two hundred and forty thousand souls, who, 
however, have not all been yet brought under the Dutch administration. Most 
writers agree with Junghuhn in regarding them as of Batta stock. But although 
the physical and moral resemblances are numerous, the contrasts are also very 
striking. Even the northern and southern Nias people themselves differ greatly 
in their usages, and do not recognise themselves as of common kindred. If the 
Ono Niha are really of Batta origin, the separation must have taken place in 
extremely remote times. 

Both branches of the Nias group are usually cheerful, agreeable, courteous, 
easily led by motives of self-love, always anxious to please, but extremely indolent, 
except in some of the southern districts, where war is not carried on, as elsewhere, 
by a system of ambuscades and nightly surprises. Hereditary hatreds are perpe- 
tuated sometimes to the utter extinction of one or the other of the hostile factions. 
The villages, especially in the north, attest the state of constant terror in which 
the people pass their lives. Nowhere is an isolated hut to be seen, all being 
grouped together on natural or artificial eminences encircled by ditches and 
palisades. The dwellings themselves are raised on rows of piles, amid which the 
pigs act as scavengers, thriving on the kitchen and other refuse. A ladder and 
trap give access to the house, which affects the form of a large oval basket with a 
high-pitched roof thatched with reeds, the projecting gables being everywhere 
decorated with the jawbones of hog.s, attesting the wealth of the owner. To these 
the southern village chiefs add the heads of their human victims, while the whole 
is protected bj' effigies of the tutelar deitj' against the machinations of the foe and 
the malevolent spirits. At one end of the village stands the smith's house, to 
which a magic virtue is also accredited, and for further security the entrance of 
the enclosure is guarded by lofty statues of the tribal god and his wife. 

The Nias islanders are clever artisans, as shown by their well-constructed 
houses and strongholds, their elegant and highly tempered weapons. They work 
copper with taste, weave and dye their textile fabrics, make highly prized malting 


and extract cocoanut oil for exportation. Gold, either in fragments or wrought 
into jewellerj', is their onlj- currency ; and the chiefs delight in decking their hair 
with golden plumes and attaching a golden crescent like a moustache to the upper 
lip. The southern districts are traversed by a few carefully paved roads skilfully 
constructed over the crests of the hills. But, unlike the Battas, they have not 
acquired a knowledge of Hindu letters, and their ancient usages have been slowly 
modified under exclusive Malay and Mussulman influences. 

At present their religious system has approached the vanishing point. The 
main function of the ere, priests or priestesses, usually chosen by the chief from 
his own family, is to invoke the bela, or intermediate spirits, who are familiar with 
both the good and evil genii, and who can therefore be enlisted as helpmates and 
accomplices in all undertakings. The priests also bless the nuptials by pressing 
together the heads of the betrothed and offering some flesh to the protecting deity. 
Marriages are exogamous and always a matter of purchase. But the price is 
generally so exorbitant that the husband often runs great risk of forfeiting his 
own and his children's freedom, especially as the amount of the debt is doubled every 
year. Whole families have thus fallen into slavery for a liability originally 
contracted by the purchase perhaps of a few pins or a coil of metal wire. The 
albinos, somewhat numerous among the southern Niassi, are accredited to some 
prowling demon, and usually badly treated. Adultery involves heavy fines and 
often capital punishment, while girls who have had an "accident" are strangled 
and thrown to the bush. 

The priests are above all medicine-men, that is, exorcists. For every ailment 
there is a wicked spirit, whom the infallible priest never fails to expel by his 
incantations, but who is replaced by other devouring genii, that is, whenever the 
maladj' persits and is followed by death. When the end approaches, the friends 
and kindred gather round the bed, howling and yelling till the patient breathes 
his last. In the south these wailings are followed by an honourable funeral, the 
body being borne through the village and the weapons of the deceased exposed 
along the route. At the extremity of the coffin is placed the effigy of a bird 
carved in wood ; then the bier is suspended beneath a canopy of foliage, and the 
friends lie in ambush along the wayside to surprise and behead a few passing 
men and women to the greater glory of the departed. In the case of a great 
chief custom requires at least some twenty heads, to raise which indiscriminate 
warfare is waged against the surrounding villages. Sometimes they are satisfied 
with slaves, who, however, must die a lingering death under torture in order to 
render the sacrifice more agreeable to the cruel demons. 

The inheritance usually passes from father to eldest son ; but the rule is not 
absolute, /md whatever child contrives by means of a reed to capture the dying 
man's last breath, or persuade the assistants that he has done so, becomes ipso facto 
a claimant for the fortune and paternal or political power of the deceased. Chiefs, 
all powerful in theorj^ are nevertheless often fain to share the sovereignty with 
their rivals, and, as a matter of fact, they rarely venture to decide in weighty 
affairs without consulting the notables, or even all freeholders. In the assemblies 


all speak freely, at times coming to blows. It is also usual to deliberate fasting, in 
order to guard against the violent scenes that might be caused by the abuse of 

Formerly an extensive traffic was carried on in Niassi slaves, whom hundreds 
of praus came to kidnap round the coasts of the island. Sir Stamford Raffles was 
even " censured " by the East India Company for obstructing this trade during 
the British occupation. At present many of the islanders emigrate to take 
service in Malay or European families, and amongst them are nearly always 
chosen the carpenters, masons, and thatchers. 

The natives of the Mentawey Archipelago are also " savages," differing 
greatl)', however, from the other west Sumatran islanders. According to Von 
Rosenberg, who visited them between the years 1847 and 18-j2, they are not 
Malays at all, but a branch of the East Polynesian race. Their idiom, remarkable 
for its softness and abundance of vowels, appears to differ completely from the 
dialects of Sumatra and neighbouring islands. Like the Polynesians, the Chaga- 
lalegats, as they call themselves, delight in waving plumes, foliage, and flowers. 
They deck their hair with bright corals, and cover the breast with tattoo markings 
in the form of shields, like the Tonga and other Pacific peofiles. Certain food is 
strictly tabooed for the women, while the profane are warned off from certain 
m3'sterious recesses of the forest. 

The Mentawey people do not blacken their teeth like most of the Malay 
tribes, but file to a point the front teeth. The youth of both sexes join together 
in all gymnastic exercises, but after marriage the women keep discreetly apart. 
Divorce is unknown and adultery punished with death. Like their neighbours of 
the Pagah group, the Chagalalegats are extremely pacific, never warring amongst 
themselves, nor fortifying their villages, which, however, they take care not to 
build on the coast, but always on the bank of some small inland stream. Till 
lately their arms were the bow and poisoned arrows. Although much dreading 
the evil spirits, they at times consult them in the depths of the forest, where the 
replies are uttered in a harsh, quivering voice. The souls of the dead, also greatly 
feared, are supposed to become demons, and a neighbouring uninhabited island is 
the special abode of these departed spirits. 

Even the little island of Engano, at the southern extremity of the insular chain, 
has its peculiar race, on insufficient grounds affiliated by some writers to the 
Papuan stock. These rude islanders were still in the stone age till the middle of 
the present century, when they learnt the use of iron. They went naked, whence 
the term Pulo Telanjang, or " Naked Island," applied by the Malay traders to 
their little territory. The Kerikjee, as they call themselves, were also un- 
acquainted with tobacco and strong drinks, but were, on the other hand, scru- 
pulou.-ly honest, theft being unknown amongst them. They bury their dead in a 
fishing-net, doubtless to enable them to continue to procure themselves food in 
the next world; but the fruit-trees, field, and garden-plot of the departed are laid 
waste, being henceforth useless to him. 


Topography of Sumatra. 

Being still destitute of easj' highways, and inhabited by diverse tribes and 
nations without any political cohesion, Sumatra has developed on its seaboard but 
few considerable towns, while in the interior the largest centres of population are 
little more than villages. Nevertheless several epochs have witnessed the growth 
of large kingdoms, whose capitals have successively been important commercial 

The old Atjeh empire, which, according to the chroniclers, arose about the be- 
ginning of the thirteenth century, was of considerable extent. At the time of its 
greatest prosperity, in the first decades of the seventeenth century, it embraced 
about half of the island, and held several secondary states in vassalage. From 
Egypt to Japan ruling princes sought its alliance ; its army comisrised hundreds of 
fighting elephants and disposed of two thousand guns. The sultan, who, despite 
his Arab name claimed descent, like so many other Eastern potentates, from 
Alexander of Macedon, exercised almcst absolute power, at least in the districts in 
the vicinity of his residence. 

At present the Atjeh frontiers, as arbitrarily laid down by the Dutch across a 
territory of which they are not even masters, includes only the northern extremity 
of the island, from south of Langsar Bay on the east, to Silekat Bay on the west 
coast. The island of Babi, with a few adjacent islets partly inhabited by Achinese, 
also forms part of the State. Although the population has been more than deci- 
mated during the long war with the Dutch, it is still believed to exceed half a 
million. The Achinese, properly so called, are divided into three clans, the 
"twenty-two," the "twenty-five," and the "twenty-six," aogi ot inuldms, that is, 
communes, each governed by two panglimas, or hereditary chiefs, who naturally 
check each other's power, while the whole body of the panglimas constitute the 
national council. Moreover, each village enjoys local self-government, being 
administered by its elders, without whom the chief can decide nothing. This 
independent communal life explains the astonishing vigour with which the natives 
have hitherto defended their liberties against the foreign aggressors. 

Since the first treaty of commerce, signed in 1509 with the Portuguese, the 
Achinese have always maintained either pacific or hostile relations with the Euro- 
peans. But about the middle of the present century the State had fallen into 
complete decay, and the Dutch had seized several places on the seaboard. In 1872 
the moment seemed favourable to punish the sultan for the piratical doings of his 
vassals, with whom he was probably in league. Thanks to a treaty with the English, 
yielding to them her possessions on the coast of Guinea as a set-off against any 
further claims on their part to the northern parts of Sumatra, Holland hoped soon 
to make an end of the Achinese ; but their first expedition ended disastrously. 
Further equipments, a regular camj^aign, and a siege of forty-seven days, were 
required to reduce the kraton, or chief native stronghold, which, however, was not 
followed by the submission of the sultan. After fifteen years of incessant warfare, 
which has cost Holland an expenditure of £20,000,000 and over one hundred 



thousand lives, and double that number to the natives, the inland districts still 
remain unreduced, and will probably maintain their independence until the country 
is opened up by good highways ramifying in all directions. 

The capital of Atjeh, formerlj- known as the Kofa-Rnja, or " Royal City," and 
now called Groot Atjeh, is built in the form of a regidar quadrilateral, three 
miles from the coast, at the entrance of an extremely fertile valley watered by the 
river Atjeh. Southwards rise two isolated bluffs, the " father and mother of the 
river," as the natives call them. Numerous villages are s«attered round the 

Fig. 39. — Kot.4.-Raja anii Oleh-Leh. 
Scale 1 : 120,000. 

2J MUes. 

80 Feet nnc 

enclosures, and the entrenched camp is defended by a ring of forts connected 
together by railways. Another line, the first constructed in Sumatra, also 
connects the city with its marine quarter, Oleh-kh, standing on a narrow beach 
between the sea and a sluggish backwater communicating eastwards with the Atjeh. 
Before the war, Kota-Raja is said to have had a population of thirty-five 
thousand; in 1882 it had already recovered much of its importance, and in 1886 
contained nine thousand four hundred natives, besides two thousand five hundred 


Chinese. Pepper, the lacla or piper nigrum, introduced from India, is generally 
cultivated in tlie district, yielding in times of peace as much as forty-five million 
pounds, or two-thirds of the quantity consumed in the whole world. According 
to Van der Tunk the native idea is that the Europeans, living in a cold and 
damp climate, stuff their mattresses with this spice to keep themselves warm at 

East of Atjeh, on the Arcca coast, as it is called, because it is fringed with the 
Areca or betel-nut palm, the Dutch hold two other stations, Segli, near the 
northern slopes of the Goudberg, and Edi, south of Diamond Point. In the 
neighbouring district of Pasei formerly stood the city of Sumadra, whence the 
island takes its name. On the west or "Pepper coast," which is subject to slow 
upheaval, the chief port is Kliirincj, noted for its vast caves frequented by myriads 
of edible-nest builders. Some 60 miles farther south lies the port at the mouth 
of the Tetiom where the British ship Nisero was wrecked in 1883, and the whole crew 
captured and subjected to great hardships in captivity. Three years previously two 
French travellers in search of gold mines had been assassinated on the same river. 
Yet within thirty miles farther south the little port of Malabnh (Ana/a/jii) is occupied 
by a Dutch garrison. To escape from foreign rule most of the natives have fled 
to the coast town of Waikih, between Tenom and Malabuh. The latter place, 
which has some gold-washings and coal-beds, is followed southwards by the port 
of Tnmpat Tutcan, which trades with the neighbouring island of Babi. 

Singkel, formerly capital of a kingdom and now the chief town of a division of 
the Tapanuli province, lies on an island at the mouth of a river surrounded hj 
pestiferous swamps. Nevertheless, the place is visited bj^ some Chinese traders, 
who take camphor, benzoin, and holothurias in exchange for opium and rice. 
Baros, lying in a more healthy district farther south, was also a royal residence 
before the arrival of the Dutch, and at present does a considerable trade with 
Giiming Sitoli, capital of Nias. Beyond it follows Sibogha, on an inlet of the deep and 
spacious Tapanuli Bay, one of the best harbours in the world, affording excellent 
anchorage close in shore. Sibogha is one of the points whence travellers penetrate 
inland to the Batta countrj'. On the eastern and south-eastern heights of the 
neighbouring plateaux lie several commercially and strategically important places, 
such as Sipirok, Padang Sidempiian, and Pcrtihi, noted for its Buddhist ruins. 
Southwards in the direction of Padang follow the little-frequented ports of Natal, 
AJer Bangis, and Priamau. 

Padang, the most flourishing place on the west coast, presents the aspect 
rather of a large park than of a great commercial mart. Except in the central 
quarter occupied by the public buildings, the only structures are the low dwellings 
of the Malays, Javanese, Chinese, and Niassi Islanders, overshadowed by cocoanut- 
palras and mangoes, and surrounded by gardens, ricefields, and plantations of all 
the tropical growths valuable for their bark, gums, flowers, and fruits. In the 
distance rises the smoking cone of Talang, and southwards, be3'ond the little river 
Padang, stands the Apenberg, or "Ape Hill," so named from the quadrumana who 
here dwell peaceably under the protection of the natives. The exports, averaging 



about £600,000 yearly, consist almost exclusively of coffee sliipped for the United 

But Padang owes its importance less to the fertility of the surrounding plains 
than to its favourable position at the converging point of the routes radiating 

Fig. 40. — Padaxo and Environments. 
Scile 1 : SS.OOO. 

32 Feet and 

towards the thickly peojjled and salubrious Menangkabao plateau, which serves 
as a health-resort for the Government officials. On these Padang uplands, where 
the Dutch have been firmly established for over half a century, the chief military 
station is the fortress of Kucl;, lying some 8,000 feet above sea-level at 



the foot of Mount Merapi iu the Agam district. In case of foreign invasion 
this place would at once become the strategic and administrative centre of the whole 
island. In the vicinity is the Karbawen-gat Gorge, whose rocky walls have been 
excavated to a depth of 500 feet in the thickness of the plateau. 

Padang-Pdujang, another large place, where most of the Dutch officials reside, 
occupies the edge of the plateau at the west foot of Merapi. On another slope are 
seen the ruins of Priangan, formerly capital of the Menangkabao empire. Pajn- 
Kombo, capital of the "Fifty Kotas," lies much farther to the east on the opposite 
side of Mount Sago. This district is the Sumatran " earthly Eden," where the 
cultivated plants of the temperate zone flourish side bj' side with those of the 
tropics. Here were also situated the gold mines, which at one time made 
Sumatra famous throughout the East, but which are now abandoned. The deposits 
of magnetic iron, however, are still utilised, which occur in the neighbourhood of 

41. — Highlands East of Padang. 
Scile 1 : 750,000. 


\ /^ 







— — 



^^^ — 



» ■■ _ w , 

. _- _:^_i.':-_ ^_;_ 

^^. _ iM 


L ^ . 



Forf Van dcr CapeUen. On the banks of the Umbilien, east of Singkarah, are 
extensive coal measures of excellent quality, the contents of which have been 
estimated at about twelve billion cubic feet. Mainly with a view to opening up 
these mineral resources, a line of railway has been projected to connect the plateau 
either with Padang or with the more southern Brandeirijn Bay. But the engineer- 
ing difficulties have hitherto prevented the execution of this costly undertaking, 
and it is now proposed to reach the coalfields from the opposite side of the island 
by the navigable river Hari, main branch of the Jambi, which flows within thirty- 
five miles of the locality. The slopes are crossed by excellent carriage roads, one 
of which connects Padang-Panjaug with the coa^t, passing by a jsrofound ravine 
whence are commanded some lovely prosjoects seawards. 

South of Padang follow the little ports of Paiiwn and Mol;ko-Moliko, and the 
decayed city of BcnkHhii [Baiighalnilii), capital of a Eesidencj'. According to the 



local saying, " Eenkulen is a small place with big houses, where small people bear 
big titles." From the end of the seventeenth centurj^ till 1824, it belonged to the 
East India Company, which had made it the capital of its Indonesian possessions. 
But the harbour has gradually silted up, and the local trade has withdrawn a few 
miles farther south, to the more Convenient Bay. The town is unhealthy, 
and in 1714 the English had already removed their residence to Fort Marlhorouijh, 
some miles farther north. The houses, injured by earthquakes, are often left 
unrepaired, and the neglected appearance of the place is increased by the genei'al 

Fig. 42. — Palembako. 
Scale 1 : 75,000. 

ta.b oF G 

poverty of its Malay and Chinese inhabitants. The surrounding district is not 
very fertile, and the neighbouring coffee plantations have been abandoned. 

Despite the excellent commercial position of the ports, lying in deep inlets at 
the southern extremity of the island, the local trade chiefly in pepper, and dammar 
resin, has been 'little developed. Even before the Krakatau eruption, which spread 
havoc along the seaboard, the region of the Lampongs, or " Lowlands," did not 
contain a single important town. At present the chief centre of population is 
Tvlul;h-Buluiiij, a group of eight villages skirling Lumpong Bay and a neigh- 


boiiring streiimlet. Numerous thermal springs of varying temperature LuLble up 
at the foot of the volcanoes in the surrounding distiict. 

The chief southern trading-place and the largest city in Sumatra, ia Palemhaiig, 
which lies on both banks of the ^lusi just above the delta, and at the converging 
point of all the main routes from the interior. Palembang covers a large surface, 
the thirty-six Kampongs, or quarters of the lUr, comprising a space of over five 
miles on the north or left bank, while the opposite side is occupied by sixteen other 
quarters, grouped collectively under the name of Ulu* The few European 
buildings are disjjosed on the north side, round about the kraton, or citadel, which 
the Dutch have gradually transformed to a residential palace. As in the Chinese 
city of Canton, many of the natives live permanently afloat, residing on rakit'i, or 
bamboo rafts, moored to the banks of the river, which is here 1,000 feet wide, and 
from 30 to 50 feet deep. Some of the rafts are large enough to bear houses, 
containing several families, and according to the local tradition, the first of these 
structures were built by the Chinese traders, to whom the sultan had refused 
permission to reside ashore. At present they are inhabited not only by the 
Chinese, Malays, Arabs, and Hindus, but even by some Eurojjeans, for the sake of 
the refreshing breezes, which blow alternately up and down the stream. Nearly 
all the shops are afloat, so that most of the business is conducted in small river 
craft, which glide along the narrow channels winding between the little houses, 
painted in bright colours, and surmounted by curved roofs. During the floods 
some of these dwellings break from their moorings, and drift with the current far 
below Palembang. Children also frequently fall overboard, and become a prey to 
the numerous crocodiles infesting the river. 

The inhabitants of Palembang, who claim descent from a Javanese colony of 
the fourteenth century, still speak an idiom difl'ering greatly from the Malay 
dialects of Sumatra, and resembling the current speech of Central Java. Their 
commercial relations are also chiefly with that island, to which they forward the 
tobacco, rice, india-rubber, gutta-percha, benzoin, and other produce floated down 
from Muivara Diia, Muwara Inini, Mmrara Bliti, Muwara Rupit, and other inland 
towns, usually situated at the Miiuriras, or confluences of the main stream with its 
tributaries. This produce is shipped in large vessels which ascend the Musi to 
Palembang, 60 miles from its mouth. The gold workings, whence Palembang 
takes its name, are now of little value, and the local industries are mainly confined 
to lacquerware and furniture, manufactured by numerous Chinese artizans. 

In the neighbourhood are the tombs of the sultans, amongst which Europeans 
are surprised to find that of Sikandar Alam, " Alexander the Great," the traditional 
ancestor of so many Eastern dynasties. 

North of the ancient kingdom of Palembang, the sultanate of Jambi, reduced 
by the Dutch in 1858, also possesses a considerable town, Mmcard Kompvh, situated, 
as implied by its name, at the confluence of the Kompeh with the Jambi. This 
important trading-place lies, like Palembang, above the fluvial delta, and 45 

* The two Malay tenns llir and Ulu, of such frequent ocourreiice on the maps of the Eastern Archi- 
pelago, hare the respective meanings of " lower," •• below," " left," and "upper," " above," " right." 





miles below Jambi, the administrative capital and residence of the sultan. Here 
also a portion of the population lives on rafts moored to the banks of the stream, 
and, as in the southern province, some Hind\i remains are still seen in the neigh- 
bourhood. Several petty states still maintain their independence in the upper 
part of the Jambi basin, the exports of which are directed almost exclusively to 

Ringat, capital of the ancient kingdom of Indragiri, whose southern frontiers 
are marked by the course of the Jambi, has lost all its former greatness and 
splendour, and is now reduced to a mere group of villages on the right bank of 
the Indragiri. Its communications with the sea are entirely cut off by the alluvial 
matter gradually deposited in Amphitrite Bay, at the mouth of the river. An 
analogous position is occupied on the river Kampar by Pitht Lawang {Palaktrang), 
which was also an ancient capital. Sialc, another old metropolis, now held by the 
Dutch, although 60 miles from the mouth of the river, still communicates freely 
with the sea. But trade is here centred chiefly in Pekan Banc, which lies above 
Siak, near the advanced spurs of the Barisan range. This place has been selected 
as the future terminus of the railway intended to connect the Ombilien coal-fields 
with the eastern slope of Sumatra. 

Several little ports on this seaboard, notablj^ Biikit Bain, have begun to take an 
increasing share in the local coasting trade. Bi'iigka/is, on the island of the same 
name, possesses the advantage of a perfectly sheltered roadstead, and promises to 
become a busy seaport, since these waters have been cleared of the pirates by 
whom they were till recently infested. 

On the Sumatran side of the Strait of Malacca the chief agricultural aud 
commercial centre is the group of villages and plantations which- takes the name 
of Deli, from a petty state occupying this part of the island. Since the sultan 
placed his territory under the protection of Holland in 1862, numerous planters 
have settled in the district, the soil of which is unusually fertile. The first 
European speculators directed their attention mainly to the nutmeg, pepper, and 
other spices ; but they have graduallj- abandoned these products, and now occupy 
themselves exclusively with the cultivation of tobacco for the Amsterdam market, 
where it is highly appreciated. The production has increased enormously during 
the last few years; but unfortunately most of the plantations have been bought 
up by a powerfiil financial company, to which the Government has granted several 
exclusive privileges, rendering all free competition impossible. Freehold plots 
cannot be obtained, and the Chinese and Hindus are expressly denied the right 
to purchase land in the district. The first plantations had been worked by slaves, 
whom the company has now replaced by " contract labour." But the Malay and 
Batta natives can no longer be procured in sufiicient numbers, so that over 25,000 
Chinese coolies have had to be imported. An attempt — not, however, attended by 
much success — has also been made to introduce Javanese from Samarang, and 
thus turn to the benefit of Sumatra a part of the yearly increasing surplus popu- 
lation supplied by the neighbouring island. Some Klings, or Kalingas — that is, 
Hindus from the Madras presidency, for the most part mixed with other races — also 




contribute to swell the niiraoer of half-enslaved gangs engaged on the Deli 

These plantations are continually advancing in both directions, northwards 
into the Langkat and Atjeh territories, southwards into the sultanate of Sirdang. 

Fig. 43.— Deli. 
Scale 1 : 650,000. 

: LbkMii 


The small breed of Deli horses coming from the Batta country are highly valued 
on the Singapore and Pulo Pinang markets. 

Labuait, the outport of the Deli state, lies near the mouth of the Deli, in a 
swampy district, and on a muddy inlet where the shipping has to ride at anchor 
tiree miles from the shore. A railway runs from Labuan up the river southwards 


across the numerous kampongs and plantalions belonging to the company. At 
Medan, central village and administrative capital of the Oostkust or "East Coast" 
province, a branch from this line penetrates westwards into the Upper Langkat 

Administration of Sumatra. 

A uniform administration has not yet been introduced into the island. The 
inland district of Atjeh, as well as the more inaccessible regions of Battalaud, still 
enjoy complete political independence ; while other provinces, such as Padang, 
Benkulen, and Palembang, are entirely reduced. Intermediate between these two 
extremes are several other territories governed indirectly through vassal princes, 
who pay to Holland the /lassi/, or fixed portion of the produce, but who still retain 
great personal privileges, as well as a considerable jJortion of the local revenue. 
Every degree of transition thus exists between the old regime of the Malay 
potentates and total subjection to the laws promulgated by the Dutch governor of 

The petty states situated east of the Padang plateau still follow the adaf, or 
"customs," of the ancient kingdom of Meuangkabau. Nearly all the kingdoms 
on the east slope have their more or less autonomous sultans and council of not- 
ables. The su/iKf:, or clans, have similarly their elected chiefs, who receive their 
investiture at the hands of the Government, and who serve as intermediaries 
between the people and the Dutch authorities. Several united sukus constitute a 
margn, or secondary groujj, tribe, or princijDality, corresponding to the French 
canton, and administered by district chiefs who act on the one hand as spokesmen 
for the people, and on the other as agents for the central power. Formerly every 
marga had its sj^ecial laws and customs recorded on bamboos or the leaves of the 
borassus, and jealously preserved from generation to generation. 

The main divisions of Sumatra, with their areas and estimated poiJulations, will 
be found tabulated in the Appendix. 

SuNDA Islands, between Sumatra and Borneo. "^ 

The Riouw and Lingga archipelagoes, which form a southern extension of the 
Malay peninsula, occupy a considerable area, but are far from rivalling in popidation, 
products, or commercial enterprise the little island of Singapore, detached by Great 
Britain from the Dutch East Indies, and by her developed into the chief centre of 
trade at the southernmost extremity of the Asiatic continent. Like Singajioro, 
both insular groups appear to be mere fragments of the adjacent mainland, and both 
are known to the Malays by the name of Tanah Salat, or " Land of Straits," from 
the numerous channels and passages winding between these groups of islands, 
islets, and reefs. Of all the channels, the most frequented is that of Riouw, which 
connects the roadstead of Singapore with the open sea stretching eastwards to 

Both archijx'lagoes contrast sharply with the alluvial islands on the Sumati-an 

I 2 



coast. Belonging geologically to the Malay peninsula, and like it consisting 
mainly of granite and sandstones, they rise in undulating cliffs, above wliicLi 
appear a few higher summits, or "mountains," as the natives call them. One of 
the eminences in Bintang attains a height of 1,700 feet, which is still 2,000 feet 
lower than the peak of Lingga (3,700 feet), culminating point in the island of like 
name, in the southern group. Notwithstanding their healthy climate, due to the 
absence of marshy tracts, a large number of the islands are still uninhabited, and 

Fig. H. — Riouw Ap.chipelago. 
Scale 1 : 1,640,000. 




Lasb or Green 




80 to 160 

leO Feet and 

an Milps 

entirely clothed with a dark forest vegetation. The neighbouring waters are even 
still imi^erfectly surveyed, and consequently avoided by the Malay seafarers. 

The primitive ijopulation of the islands consists of Malays, and the Lingga archi- 
pelago, which presents a tj'pe of remarkable purity, is even traditionally regarded 
as the cradle of the race. The Riouw dialect is one of the richest in literary 
products, such as chronicles, dramas, and poems. But in the Riouw, or northern 
group, the Malay stock is already largely intermingled -with diverse foreign 
elements — Javanese, who ruled over the islands when the Mojo-Pahit kingdom 
flourished; Bugi traders from Celebes, who occupy several villages ; Chinese, who, 
as in Singapore, have already acquired the numerical preponderance in mau}^ places. 

BANGKA. 117 

Both in the towns and rural districts these Chinese are divided into two distinct 
nations, each with its " captain," — the Chinese of Canton and those of Amoj-, the 
latter contrasting favourably with the former for their peaceful habits, love of work, 
and sobriety. 

This steady inflow of the " Celestials " is due to the development of trade, 
which is much more active in the Riouw than in the Lingga archipelago. The 
Chinese are here also occupied with the cultivation of tjamhir, of which Riouw has 
practically the monopoly. This product, called also terra japonica and catechu, is 
obtained from a decoction of the leaves of the uncaria, or imuclea gamhiroi botanists. 
The island of Bintan alone yields about sixteen million pounds yearly, forwarded 
chiefly to Batavia, ]\Iacassar, and Banjermassin, where it is used in the preparation 
of betel. Eiouw is also one of the most important pepper-growing regions in 

Some places have also deposits of tin, amongst others the two Karimon islets 
in the Strait of Malacca, and the large island of Singkep, in the southern archipelago 
south of Lingga. The straits j'ield large quantities of holothurians and of the agar- 
agar [fucus saccharinus), for which Chinese epicures pay a high price. 

Riomc, capital of the archipelagoes, and, till recently, of the East Sumatran 
Residency, is situated in the islet of Tanjang Pinaug, close to the west side of Bin- 
tang, largest member of these insular groups. The town, whose name is often 
extended to the two adjacent islands, stands on the east side of the Riouw Strait, 
the Rhio of the English charts. It comprises several distinct quarters, stretching 
around a shallow roadstead ; which, however, is well sheltered from all winds by the 
adjacent islets of liars and Sengarang. Although declared a free port in 1828, 
Riouw has not been able to compete with its British neighbour SingajDore, to which 
vast emporium it sends the tribute of all its exports by a regular line of steamers. 


The large island of Bangka, with an area of about five thousand square miles, 
and administratively constituting a Residencj' of itself, might seem at first sight 
to form a mere geographical dependence of Sumatra. Nevertheless it is entirely 
distinct from that region in its geographical constitution, forming, like the Riouw 
and Lingga groups, a fragmentary extension of the Malay peninsula. It is also 
disposed in precisely the same direction, from north-west to south-east, parallel with 
the main axis of Sumatra. The corresponding series of convex and concave curves 
presented by both sides of the tortuous and shallow strait separating Bangka from 
the alluvial lands of Palembang, is due not to a rupture produced between rocks 
of identical formation, but to the action of the alternating marine currents uni- 
formly distributing the sedimentary matter brought down by the Palembang 

Unlike Sumatra, Bangka has neither volcanoes nor igneous rocks, and is almost 
destitute even of thermal springs. The chief formations are granites, quartz, feld- 
spars, thrown together without any apparent regularity. The undulating hills are 



not disposed in ridges, but scattered in disorder over the surface, and nowhere 
attain 3,000 feet in height. Mount Maras, the culminating point (2,800 feet), 
rises above the south side of the narrow Klabat Bay, in the northern part of the 
island. But the steepest cliffs are those of the east coast, facing the high sea. 

Although presenting the same climatic conditions as those of the opposite 
Sumatran seaboard, Bangka already offers some marked contrasts in its flora and 
fauna. All lai'ge animals, such as the elephant and rhinoceros, and even the tiger 
and buffalo, are absent from its forests. The inhabitants, although very mixed, 
are mainly of Malay stock, as in the other Indonesian coastlands ; but here the 

Fig. 45. — Banoka. 

Scale 1 : 3,200,000. 




16 to 80 

80 Feet and 

— 60 Miles. 

Javanese element is less numerously represented than in the Palerabang district, 
being partly replaced by some scattered settlements of Malays from the north, and 
commonly known as Orang Sekat, or Orang Laut, that is, " Men of the Sea." They 
are akin to the Bajaus of Celebes, and the Orang Kwata, or " Men of the Estu- 
aries," who carry on a little trade with the East Sumatran coast. When at anchor 
they seldom leave their praus, eight or ten of which constitute a sort of floating 
kampong, or comraunitj', with its special customs and council of elders. 

The Orang Sekat live exclusively on fish and the species of fucus called agar- 
agar, and to this diet must be attributed the so-called yadiis, a peculiar malady to 
which they are occasionally subject. Having remaiued pagans, they are ofteu 

B ANOKA. 119 

accused by their Mohammediin neighbours of being addicted to piracy, whereas 
they are, on the contrary, strictly honest in all their deuKngs, depending for a 
livelihood solely on fishing and trade. The inland populations, known as Orang 
Gunang, or " Highlanders," resemble the Battas both in physical appearance and 

Of the Chinese, who form nearly a third of the whole population, about one- 
half are natives of Bangka, this section taking the name of Pernakan, and constitut- 
ing a group quite distinct from the Sinkee, or Chinese immigrants from Canton and 
Fokien. They mostly marry half-caste native women, and speak both Chinese and 
Malay, but on the whole preserve the original Chinese type. Since 1850 the popu- 
lation of the island has more than doubled, but is still slight, scarcely exceeding 
twelve persons to the square mile. Agriculture is almost entirely neglected, 
everything being sacrificed to the tin-mining industry, the most productive in the 
whole world. 

The valuable tin deposits, said to have been discovered about the beginning of 
the eighteenth century, belonged at first to the sultan of Palembang, master of the 
island. In 1740 the Chinese, already at that time exclusively employed to work 
the mines, raised about 1,550 tons, while the present annual yield of this state 
monopoly often equals the value of the capital invested. But the miners continue 
to be neglected, and have to be kept imder control by the Dutch garrisons stationed 
in the mining districts. 

The stanniferous beds, of which there are several hundreds, occur in all parts of 
the island, but are specially abundant on the north-east side, round about Mera- 
wang. As in the Malay peninsula, the ores are contained in the allu\'ial soil 
which, to a depth of from 14 feet to 35 feet or 40 feet, overKes the dark- 
coloured clays at the foot of the granite hiUs. Here and there the streams carry- 
ing down the alluvial matter have excavated deep ca^'ities or " pockets," in which 
the metal has accumulated in considerable quantities. Besides tin, Bangka also 
possesses deposits of silver, copper, lead, arsenic, and iron, none of which are much 
worked, except the last-mentioned, which is highlj' valued for the manufacture of 
small arms. 

Muntok, capital of Bangka, lies at the north-west extremity, over against the 
Palembang river delta. During the British occupation it was known as Miiito, in 
honour of the Governor-General of that name, but has since resumed its old Malay 
designation. Muntok, which comprises a strongly fortified European and a native 
quarter, with a total population of about 3,300, has the advantage of a well-shel- 
tered but somewhat shallow roadstead, which is the centre of a brisk trade with 
Sumatra, Riouw, and Singapore, 


BQliton, or Blitong, which is about one-third the size of Bangka, is connected 
with the south-east side of that island by about a hundred islets, rocks, and reefs, 
endangering the navigation of the intervening Cnispar Strait. It presents the 


same geological formation as its neighbour, and, like it, possesses tin-bearing 
alluvial deposits. Its culminating point, the twin-crested Tajem, has an altitude 
of 3,100 feet. 

Owing to the numerous corsairs infesting the surrounding waters, Billiton was 
till recently destitute of trade, and almost of inhabitants ; even in 1856 the popula- 
tion still numbered less than twelve thousand, or scarcely six persons to the square 
mile. But since the development of its tin mines, this number has been tripled, 
and the port of Tanjoiig Pcuidang, converging point of all the main routes, is now 
the centre of a considerable local trade, largely in the hands of the Chinese, who 
form about a fourth of the whole population. The output of tin, which in 1853 
scarcely exceeded forty tons, has since then increased a hundredfold, and yields 
enormous profits to the chartered company. As in Bangka, the miners work on their 
own account ; but they are obliged to sell the tin at a price fixed beforehand, and 
to purchase their supplies in the company's stores. Owing to this oppressive 
truck system, most of them are burdened with heavy debts to the end of their days. 
Since the formation of this company, Billiton has been an administrative province 
independent of Bangka, with an " assistant resident " stationed at Tanjong 

Islands in the Boeneo Sea. 

The Sea of Borneo, commimicating northwards with the China Sea, is sttidded 
with small archipelagoes, each comprising numerous islets, for the most part 
uninhabited. Such are Tamhclan, midway between Lingga and Borneo ; Anamhm, 
off the Malay peninsula ; Nafuna, in more open waters, equidistant from the Malay 
peninsula and Borneo ; Serasan, west of the principality of Sarawak, in Borneo. 
This last group is also known as the Pirates' Archipelago, although the people of 
the only inhabited island are now exclusively occupied with the preparation of 
cocoanut oil. 

Of all these islands the largest is Buiiguven, called also Great Natuna, which 
has an area of 640 square miles, and in Mount Ranay attains an altitude of 3,380 
feet. The inhabitants of the cultivated islands, estimated by Hollander in 1878 
at twelve thousand souls, are exclusively Malays, who trade with Singapore and 
Riouw, taking rice, hardware, and Eurojjean textiles in exchange for their fish, 
sago, and cocoanut oil. The people of Great Natuna build praus described by 
Laf)lace as of admirable workmanship. This group depends politically on Riouw 
and is administered by members of the sultan's family, vassals of Holland. 


The formerly powerfid kingdom of Brunei gives its name in a somewhat 
modified form to the great island of which it occupies the north-west coast. 
Kalamantin, or Klematan, is a native term current in some districts, and 
occasionally applied to the whole island. But Borneo is of such vast extent 
compared with all the surrounding lauds, that to its inhabitants it seemed almost 
boundless, and far too largo to be designated by any special name. Hence they 

BOENEO. 121 

distinguished the various prorinces alone by particular appellations, to which a 
more general meaning was afterwards given by foreigners. Excluding the con- 
tinental and polar regions, this island is in fact exceeded in size by New Guinea 
alone; but thanks to its more compact triangular form, it presents far more the 
appearance of a continent thnn does that elongated and deeply indented region. 

Borneo evidently constitutes the central nucleus of the former Austral-Indian 
land, which comprised Java and Sumatra besides the Malay peninsula and inter- 
vening shallow waters. The basin of these waters has, so to say, scarcely yet been 
excavated by the geological agencies, and still reveals the old form of the continent, 
over one-third of which is represented by its largest fragment, Borneo. With the 
adjacent islets, such as Maijang and the Karimata group, near the south-west coast, 
Pulo Laut and Seboku at the south-east corner, and a few others, it has a total 
area of nearly 300,000 square miles, or about two and a half times that of the 
British Isles. Excluding minor indentations, the coastline has a development of 
not less than 3,800 miles. 

This central region of Indonesia, although one of the most fertile, and 
abounding in all kinds of tropical produce, is nevertheless almost a wilderness, so 
slight is the population compared to its superficial extent. Java, seven or eight 
times smaller, exceeds it ten or twelve times in the number of its inhabitants ; even 
the thinly peopled island of Sumatra is more than twice as populous, at least, if any 
confidence can be placed in the summary estimates and conjectures of travellers. 
This relative and absolute disproportion must be attributed to the zone of swampy 
and malarious forests which encircles nearly the whole of the coastlands. Village 
communities could scarcely be developed in these insalubrious regions, where most 
centres of population have remained in a rudimentary state, lacking the elements 
of progress which are acquired by mutual intercourse and commercial relations. 
The riverain populations have risen little above the primitive social condition of 
fishers and hunters. The period of agriculture, properly so called, has begun only 
in a limited number of clearings, and in many districts such is the savage state of 
the natives, that the various tribal groujjs still regard each other simply as so much 
game. Head-hunting is the only object with which many tribes ajiproach their 

Exploration of Borneo. — Political Divisions. 

The social state of the people has naturally been a great impediment to the 
exploration of the country, of which down to the beginning of the present century 
little was known beyond the seaboard. Sighted by the Portuguese probably in the 
first years of the sixteenth century, Borneo remained unknown to history till 1521, 
when the survivors of Magellan's expedition round the globe pi-esented themselves 
before Brunei. Soon after this event, Jorge de Menezes established a factory on the 
west coast ; the Dutch made their appearance in 1598, and they were soon followed 
by the English. But all attempts at exploration were successively abandoned 
either for lack of means or owing to the opposition of the natives and Chinese 


Permanent European settlements on the coast were first made in 1812, when 
the English ocoujjied Pontianak and Banjermassin, which were two years later 
surrendered to the Dutch. These two stations, and those subsequently founded at 
other places along the seaboard, became the points of dejDarture for the various 
expeditions that have since been sent to the interior for military, geographical, or 
scientific purposes. No systematic survey has yet been undertaken ; but the 
different itineraries of independent explorers already intersect , each other at several 
points. Except the more central regions, nearly all the unexplored districts have 
also been at least viewed from a distance, and described from the reports of the 

The routes followed by travellers have mainly been the watercourses, which 
for the most part flow in a sufficiently deep and gentle current to be ascended in 
boats a long way from their mouths. These highways were taken by von Martens, 
and many others, who penetrated into the heart of the island from Pontianak ; by 
Schwaner, who traversed nearly the whole of the Barito, Kahajan, and Kapuas 
fluvial basins; by Karl Bock, who on the east side visited the "Land of Cannibals," 
watered by the Kutei River. Land journeys have been relatively more frequent in 
the northern parts, where the streams, being less developed, present fewer facilities 
for reaching the hilly regions of the interior. The memorable excursions of A. R. 
Wallace were made round about Sarawak, and since the British occupation of the 
northern territory, the network of itineraries has been extended over the whole of 
that domain. 

The Dutch, masters of all the rest of Indonesia, except the eastern half 
of Timor, have not had time to establish their rule over the whole of Borneo. 
They have, however, gradually reduced or annexed all the section lying south of 
the equator, as well as about half of the northern districts. But possession of the 
north-west and northern parts has been secured by the English, through various 
treaties with the Sultan of Brunei, former suzerain of the whole of this region. 
In 1846 the British Government obtained the absolute cession of the island of 
Labuan, at the entrance of Brunei Bay, despite the protests of the Netherlands. 
But the Sultan had already granted to James Brooke the principality of Sarawak, 
comprising the southern part of his kingdom. In return for a yearly subsidy, this 
soldier of fortune, commonly known as Rajah Brooke, thus became master of an 
extensive territory, which has since been gradually enlarged at the expense of the 
sultan's domain. 

On the opjjosite side of Brunei the sultan has also yielded the northern part of 
the island to a powerful British comjiany, which has already obtained a royal 
charter from the Crown of England. A part of this territory having also been 
claimed by the sovereign of the Sulu archipelago, that potentate, like his Brunei 
colleague, has been bought off by a pension. Thanks to this purchase of the land, 
Spain, which had meantime become the suzerain of the Sulu prince, has henceforth 
been excluded from all claim to the possession of any part of Borneo. Lastly, the 
sultanate of Brunei itself dei^ends for its very existence on the sufferance of 
England, and it is now jDroposed to unite it to the other territories of the two 


companies, under the direct protectorate of Great Britain. But a frontier question 
still remains to be settled between the Dutch Government and the North Borneo 
Company, arising out of a misunderstanding as to the identity of the river Sebuku, 
which is accepted by both sides as the boundary line. 

Physical Featl'res of Borneo. 

With the exception of Celebes and Halmahera, the Indonesian islands present, 
as a rule, extremely simple outlines. Some even affect the form of geometrical 
figures, such as parallelograms, ovals, trapeziums, and, as in the case of Borneo, 
triangles. At first sight the observer is struck by the contrast presented by these 
massive contours, comjoared to those of the eccentric island of Celebes, with its 
curiously radiating peninsulas. But a superficial study of the Bornean mountain 
ranges shows that a slight subsidence of the land would suffice to give the great 
island a coastline analogous to those of Celebes and Halmahera. Reduced to its 
framework of hOls, Borneo presents in the first place a main ridge, disposed from 
south-west to north-east, in the direction of the Philippines. But from the central 
part of this ridge branch off three divergent chains, terminatiug at the principal 
headlands of the island, and separated from each other by the alluvial j)lains of 
intervening fluvial basins. The primitive aspect of the island has thus been 
gradually modified by erosions and sedimentary deposits, which during the course 
of ages has rendered less and less distinct its original stellar formation. 

The main range begins some 30 miles from the Philippine waters in a superb 
mountain, culminating point not only of Borneo, but probably of the whole of 
Indonesia. Kina-Balu, or the " Chinese Widow," as it is named from a curious 
local legend, was first ascended by Low in 1851. Belcher's trigonometric 
measurements give it an altitude of 13,300 feet, although travellers who have 
apiproached nearest to the summit estimate its height at not much more than 
11,000 feet. Seen from one of the bays indenting the west coast, Kina-Balu seems 
to rise almost vertically above the surrounding heights, terminating in an irregular 
crest, which is surmounted by distinct prominences resembling towers. Formerly 
its slopes were clothed with dark forests up to a height of 10,000 feet ; but the 
woodlands have almost everywhere been cleared by the highland peasantry, the 
primeval brushwood surviving only on the more inaccessible precipices. The 
prevailing formations are granites and crystalline rocks, although according to 
Little, who ascended Kina-Balu in 1807, a crater of vast size opens on its flanks, 
while fragments of lavas are strewn over the surrounding granites. 

Till recently geographers spoke of a large lake situated at the east foot of the 
moimtain with a circumference of about 100 miles. But no such lake exists, nor 
is there anything to justify the report beyond a fen or morass flooded during the 
periodical inundations of a neighbouring stream. The belief in this pretended 
lake may possibly be due to the Malay ierva. danaii, that is, "lake," or "sea," 
applied to one of the surrounding districts. 

South of Kina-Balu the divide between the eastern and western slopes fulls 



ubruptly, the pass crossed by Witti being little over 2,000 feet high. But farther 
south this explorer failed to discover any pass lower than 3,900 feet, while some 
of the summits in this section of the chain attain elevations of over 6,500 feet. 
Towards the south-west the main range is still for the most part unexplored, 
nothing being known beyond the names of a few peaks visible from the sea. 

Fig. 46.— Kina-Balu. 

Scale 1 : 1,280,000. 


160 Feet and 

Everything is vaguely designed on the maps, except in the basin of the river 
Brunei, south and south-east of the capital, where Mounts Malu and Marud both 
exceed 8,000 feet in height. 

The central nucleus of the whole orographic sj^stem, whence flow south-west, 
■west, and east the upper affluents of the three great Bornean rivers, has not yet 
been visited by any Europeans, and is known onlj' by name. According to the 


natives the Batu Tabang, culminating point of this mountain group, is so high 
that "from its summit heaven might easily be reached." From a distance it is 
said to appear always " white," either because rising above the snow-line, or more 
probably because usually wrapped in vapour. However this be, the nearest 
mountains that have hitherto been explored are distinguished rather by their 
picturesque outlines and eccentric forms than for their great elevation. Accord- 
ing to Schwaner, none exceed 4,650 feet, while the ranges branching off towards 
the headlands on the seaboard would appear to be almost everywhere still lower. 
Even the Lupar chain, running south-west and west, completely disappears in 
some planes. Between the river of like name traversing Sarawak and Lake 
Sriang, in the Kapuas basin, the slopes are scarcely perceptible, whereas towards 
the north-east the horizon is bounded by the blue crests of the " Thousand and 
One Hundred Mountains." Farther on the western chain is again interrupted 
at several points ; but towards its extremity it develops a superb amphitheatre 
around the Sarawak country, terminating on the coast at the sharp headland of 
Tanjang Datu. The two loftiest summits of this waterparting are Penrisan and 
Pu, 4,750 and 6,000 feet respectively. 

South of the Batu Rajah, or " King Mountain " (8,300 feet), the range skirt- 
ing the east side of the Kapuas basin appears to have no peaks rivalling in altitude 
those of Sarawak and the central nucleus. It is continued southwards by a line 
of crests from 2,000 to 2,600 feet high, and thence between the Kapuas and Barito 
basins not by an uninterrupted chain, but by a series of groups separated from 
each other by broad depressions, aud thus forming so many isolated masses. The 
south-eastern range forming the divide between the Barito- and Mahakkam basins 
is somewhat loftier, the Batu Budang attaining, according to Schwaner, an eleva- 
tion of 4,550 feet. But southwards it falls rapidly, in its central parts presenting 
nothing but rounded hills, scarcely more than 600 or 700 feet high. One of the 
gaps in this chain is occupied by the Jallan-Batu, a chaos of limestone blocks of 
every form and size, covering a space several hundred square miles in extent. 
Trees have sprung up between the boulders, and here and there in their fissures 
or on their summits. The mountains of which these calcareous masses at one time 
formed part have been gradually disintegrated and carried away by the running 
waters, leaving nothing but these scattered fragments of more durable rocks. 

As it approaches the sea, sweeping round to the south-west of the alluvial 
Banjermassin plains, the range again develops an unbroken chain of crystalline 
formation, terminating in the promontory of Cape Satoi. In the same way the 
hills skirting the north side of the Mahakkam basin merge eastwards in the 
granite Lakuru chain, terminating in a bold headland on the coast. 

Besides the fully developed continuous ranges, Borneo is diversified with a 
large niunber of isolated groups dotted over the plains, like the archipelagoes in 
the surrounding waters. Most of these groups are of slight elevation, although 
some few rival in altitude the summits of the main ranges. Such are Mounts 
Balik Pippan and Bratus, in the Mahakkam basin, the latter, according to Bock, 
about 5,000 feet high. 


Several of the summits in Central Borneo consist of granite and other crystal- 
line rocks, as sufficiently attested by the debris washed down and strewn over the 
plains by the running waters. But in the regions near the seaboard nearly all 
the hills are of sedimentary formation. Of these the calcareous rocks are very 
prevalent, their innumerable caverns affording shelter to myriads of the esculent 
swallow. Other deposits of various ages contain rich beds of coal and lignite, 
and many parts of the island abound in thermal springs. Although surrounded 
by a semicircle of igneoxis islands, Borneo appears at present to contain no active 
volcanic centres ; but this region also had at one time its eruptive craters, and 
the scoriie and other traces of extinct tires may still be seen here and there, as in 
the neighbourhood of Kina-Balu and in the Montrado uplands. 

The outlines of the Bornean seaboard have frequently been modified. If there 
was a time when it formed continuous land with Sumatra and the Malay peninsula, 
it was also at other epochs reduced to the mere skeleton of its mountain ranges, 
destitute of the argillaceous, shingly, and alkivial plains at present filling iip the 
spaces between its divergent chains. It was probably during these epochs that its 
volcanic cones blazed above the neighbouring marine waters. Then also were 
deposited the horizontal beds on which are strewn the ferruginoiis pebbles washed 
down from the hills, and among which are collected the precious metals, gold, 
platinum, quicksilver, as well as diamonds of the purest water. Gold washings 
occur in most provinces — the British territory in the north, Sarawak, Montrado, 
the Pontianak and Banjermassin district. The Malays and Dayaks are moreover 
acquainted with numerous mineral deposits, which they jealously conceal, either in 
the hope of retaining a monopoly of the mines or else in order to keep the for- 
eigners from their territory. The diamond mines are usually found in pockets 
of argillaceous soil at some distance from the auriferous beds. 

Rivers of Borneo. 

Thanks to an abundant rainfall, Borneo is watered by a considerable number of 
broad streams flowing in all directions seawards. Nevertheless the north-west 
slope between the main range and the coast is too narrow for the development of 
any great watercourses. Here the most copious is the Brunei, or Borneo, which 
falls into the estuary at the capital of the state of like name. Farther south, but on 
the same north-west slope of the island, are the navigable rivers Eajang and 
Lupar, besides the Sarawak, which, although of small size, is better known from 
the town of that name situated on its estuary, the scene of so many stirring events 
in recent years. 

One of the three largest rivers in Borneo is the Ka2:)uas, whose catchment 
basin lies between the two south-western mountain ranges, and which flows mainly 
towards the south-west. The chain of large lakes which formerly marked its course 
have been gradually filled in by alluvial dejjosits, and are now represented only by 
so-called dandns, such as the Sriang and Luar, periodically flooded shallow lagoons 
occurring at intervals along the riverain plains. Before reaching the low-lying 


coastiands, the Kapuas contracts fo a narrow bed between two neighbouring hills, 
beyond which it ramifies into two main branches and numerous smaller channels, 
forming an extensive delta with a coastline of no less than 70 miles. This 
alluvial tract projects considerably beyond the original shore-line, and according 
to the local traditions mentioned by Temminck, has advanced several leagues sea- 
wards during the historic period. The island of Majang, opposite the southern 
branch of the delta, is already almost entirely connected with the mainland, while 
the sedimentary deposits continue to encroach upon the sea still farther southward, 
in the direction of the Karimata archipelago. The province of Pulu Petak was 
formerly an island, as indicated by its verj' name, which means an island destitute 
of all vegetation. 

The section of Borneo lying south of the equator is the most abundantly watered 
part of the country. Here follow in rapid succession the rivers Kotariugin, Pem- 
buan, Sampit, Katingan, Kahajan, and Barito, all, like the Kapuas, lined by 
occasionally flooded morasses, all steadily advancing beyond the normal coastline, 
and all presenting navigable highways far into the interior. Of these southern 
streams the largest is the Barito or Banjer, known also by several other names in 
the various districts through which it flows. Rising in the central nucleus of 
highlands, it first forces its way eastwards over a -series of falls and rapids, through 
deep and almost inaccessible gorges, beyond which it winds across the plains south- 
wards to the coast at Banjermassin. Swollen by a large number of affluents, it is 
everywhere navigable in this section of its coiirse, and aboiit 60 miles from the 
sea ramifies into two also navigable branches, of which the eastern receives the 
Negara and Martapura tributaries, while the western joins the Kapuas, which 
formerly reached the coast in an independent channel. But the alluvial matter 
brought down by both of these rivers has gradually filled in the intervening marine 
inlet, and this eastern Kapuas has thus become a tributary of the Barito, a fate 
which must also, sooner or later, overtake the Kahajan, or Great Dayak. 

The Barito delta has a superficial area of over 800 square miles, while 
the trenches enclosing it east and west are, in some places, considerably over 
half a mile wide. During the inundations the floodwaters of the Barito and 
Kapuas intermingle, converting the intervening plains into a vast sheet of water, 
estimated by Schwaner at no less than 13,000 square miles in extent. Like the 
Mississippi and other large rivers flowing through low-lying tracts, the Barito 
frequently shifts its course, forming new channels, especially at the sharp turnings, 
and thus gi\-ing rise to shallow lagoons and backwaters, analogous to the " false 
rivers " of the Mississippi valley. Here and there these c/aiiaus, or " seas," are 
again scoured by the recurring inimdations, and uniting with other lagoons or 
flooded meres, stretch away between their wooded banks bej'ond the horizon. 

In the east equatorial region the only large river is the Mahakkam, called also 
Kutei, from the vast plain which it traverses on its south-easterlj- course seawards. 
After escaping from the rugged uplands, it spreads out to the right and left in vast 
lagoons bounded by a fringe of forests, and in some places so broad that the oppo- 
site shores are invisible. These lacustrine basins, the remains of an ancient sea, are 



gradually diminisliing in extent, their muddy banks steadily advancing towards 
the central parts, which Karl Bock found to be still over 80 feet deep. Below 
the region of lakes, which are connected by narrow channels in an endless laby- 
rinthic sj'stem, the Mahakkam, after re-uniting with its chief affluent, continues its 
winding southerly course between low ranges of carboniferous hills. But beyond an 

Fig. 47. — Bakito Delta. 
Scale 1 : 1,400.000. 

abrupt bend to the east its two banks, diverging to a distance of one or two miles, 
acquire a completely alluvial character ; and here the nipa palm is the only arbo- 
rescent growth. Here also it becomes a tidal stream, flowing, so to say, beyond the 
mainland, and, like the Mississippi, ramifying into numerous " goose feet " amid 
the surrounding marine waters. An exceptional spring tide, some 5 or 6 feet 


Liglaer than usual, would suffice to ugain submerge the whole of this newly 

■ formed 

North of the Lakuru hills uoiie of the eastern streams, such as the Kelai, the 




Kiijang, the ScbuTrong, or the Kina-Batangan, are comparable in the extent of 
their catchment basins to the Mahakkam and other Large southern rivers. Never- 
theless all have a copious discharge, and all are navigable, although their estuaries 
are much obstructed by the coralline formations which abound on the north-east 

Few regions of the globe can compare with Borneo in the number of their 
navigable highways ; hence it is not surprising that hundreds of Malay and 
Chinese traders have, as in Sumatra, utilised these streams for their floating 
habitations, the materials for which are yielded in abundance by the surrounding 
forests. Erecting their little houses, and at times a whole village, on their firmly 
constructed rafts, they descend with the current, casting anchor wherever there 
are prospects of doing a little trade in honey, gums, skins or other local produce. 
After weeks or months of this wandering life they reach some larger emporium on 
the lower course, where they sell their wares, houses and all. If the venture has 
proved profitable, they again ascend the river in boats, build another floating 
domicile and renew their barter trade with the natives. 

Climate of Borneo. 

Although intersected by the equinoxial line Borneo has a far loss torrid 
climate than that of Aden and the coastlands on the Red Sea. Like the other 
Indonesian regions it enjoys the refreshing marine breezes, which are attracted 
from all quarters towards the centres of rarefaction. On the seaboard the glass 
seldom indicates 95° F. in the shade and usually does not exceed 90°, while the 
thermometer normally oscillates between 72° in the morning and 89° about two 
o'clock in the afternoon. Ilence the dangerous character of the Bornean climate 
is due not to its heat, but to the heavy night dews and to the malaria caused by 
the periodic inundations and decomposition of organic matters, especially in the 
interior, less exposed to the invigorating sea breezes. Here also there is little 
change of season, the winds being little regulated and rain-bearing clouds 
arriving from all quarters throughout the year. 

But on the seaboard the south-east trades prevailing from April to October, 
are regularly followed by the west and stormy north-west, north and north-east 
monsoons. But even here moisture is precipitated at all times, and at Sarawak 
the mean annual rainfall is estimated at from loO to 200 inches. Long droughts 

Cliicf Rivers of Borneo : — 

Brunei' or Limbanj 

Rcjang . 


Kapuas . 



Barito . 




Approsimate Length of Navifrable 
Area of Bnsin. Course with Affluents 
Square Miles. Mites. 





. 10,000 






. 30,000 


















also occasionally occur, as in the year 1877, when the great Sriang lagoon in the 


Scale 1 : 12.000,000. 

Kapuas basin was completely dried Tip. In the Kutei district Bock traversed 
forests killed by the heat, and destitute alike of vegetation and animal life. 


But these are rare exceptions, and on the whole Borneo may be described as 
one vast forest, so dense and contiuuous that, according to one observer, apes might 
pass from one extremity of the island to anolher by swinging from branch to branch. 
The forest growths are interrupted only in some few districts by tracts covered 
with the herbaceous alainj plant. 

Although differing little from that of the other large islands, the Bornean 
flora comprises a few peculiar forms, especially trees yielding good timber, gums 

K 2 


and rosins. On the flanks of Kiua-Balu, noted for its numerous varieties of the 
pitcher-plant, botanists have observed a remarkable intermingling of Indian, 
Malayan, and Australian species. On the muddy coastlands flourishes the valu- 
able sago tree {Mdroxi/lon sagus Ruiiiphii), which yields its nutritive sap in such 
abundance that the province of Sarawak alone supplies more than half of the 
sago exported from tropical lands. A single plant of average size furnishes a 
thousand cakes, with a total weight of about seven hundred pounds, a quantity 
sufiicient to support one man for a twelvemonth, yet not needing more than some 
ten days' easy labour for its production. 


Like its flora, the fauna of Borneo possesses several species giving it a peculiar 
physiognomy. Almost every island has some characteristic animal, and the con- 
trasts presented by these insular faunas has enabled naturalists to conjecture the 
relative ages when the islands became detached from each other. Thus Sumatra 
and Borneo must have still formed continuous land when Java was already a 
separate region. Hence the narrow Sunda Strait would appear to be older than 
the broad but shallow Sea of Borneo. This inference is confirmed by the con- 
formity of the faunas between Borneo and Sumatra, and their relative difference 
between the latter island and Java. 

Amongst the animals which appear to have originated in Boi'neo, the most 
remarkable is the mias, or orang-utan, that is, "man of the woods" [Simia sdtyrus), 
also met in North Sumatra. He is found in every part of Borneo, but all attempts 
to tame him have hitherto resulted in failure. Nearly all the captured specimens 
die of consumption, even when retained in the vicinity of their native forests- 
The Dayaks assert that the mias fears neither rhinoceros, tiger, nor wild boar, and 
that he will even face the crocodile and python. It was long doubted whether the 
elephant and rhinoceros formed part of the Bornean fauna, but although they 
have disappeared from the Dutch provinces, they are still met in herds near 
Sandakan, in British territory. The Bornean tiger is a distinct species, and here 
also occur two varieties of the crocodile found nowhere else, 


Mention is often made of a jjeculiar race of aborigines dwelling in the midst 
of the forests, and the natives themselves are fond of talking about the Orang- 
Buntut, or " Tailed Men," said to dwell in the central regions. Many Arab, 
Malay, and native travellers claim to have seen them, squatting on little stools 
with holes made for the convenience of inserting their caudal appendix. Even 
recently the explorer, Carl Bock, searched, though in vain, for these tailed people the inhabitants of the highlands, between the Barito and Pasir basins. 

But apart from these Buntuts, Borneo still harbours many absolutely savage 
peoples. Such are the Puans of the central regions, and the Njavongs of the 
Kahajan basin, who live in the forests unsheltered even by a screen of foliage 
from sun or rain. Their only garment is a loin-cloth, their weapon the blow-pipe, 



through which they shoot little darts poisoned with a mixture of nicotine and 
other ingredients. They shun Europeans, Malays, and Chinese alike, trading 
with them only through intermediate agents. Their complexion is lighter tluui 

Fiof. .')0. — r)AY.iK Types, Boen'eo. 


that of other Borneans, and the women especially, thanks to the shade of the dense 
forests, have clear skins of a somewhat greyish yellow colour. Their chief food is 
the flesh of apes, snakes, and frogs. But whether these or any other peoples of 
the interior are to be classed with the fair Indonesians or the dwarfish Negritos is 
still a moot point. 


The great bulk of tlie inland jjopulations are collectivel_y known as Baj'aks, a 
term the primary meaning of which appears to be "Men," "People," but which for 
the Malays has simply the sense of " Wild," or " Heathen." In any case, many 
tribes are certainly grouped under this general designation, which differ in their 
origin, physical appearance, and customs. The special names by which they are 
known to their neighbours are for the most part taken from the districts, moun- 
tains, or rivers inhabited by them. Thus have been named the Orang-Kapuas, 
the Orang-Barito, Orang-Mahakkam, Orang-Bukit, or " Highlanders," Ot-Danom, 
or " Uplanders ; " in the same way are distinguished the " Sea," " River," and 
" Land " Dayaks. 

Taken collectively the Dayak populations differ from the civilised Malaj's by 
their slim figure, lighter complexion, more prominent nose and higher forehead. 
In many communities the men carefully eradicate the hair of the face, while both 
sexes file, dye, and sometimes even pierce the teeth, in which are fixed gold 
buttons. The lobe of the ear is similarlj' pierced for the insertion of bits of stick, 
rings, crescent-shaped metal plates, and other ornaments, by the weight of which 
the lobe is gradually distended down to the shoulder. In several tribes the skulls 
of the infants are artificially deformed by means of bamboo frames and bandages. 

The simple Dayak costume of blue cotton with a three-coloured stripe for 
border is always gracefully draped, and the black hair is usually wrapped in a 
red cloth trimmed with gold. Most of the Dayaks tattoo the arms, hands, feet, 
and thighs, occasionally also breast and temples. The designs, generally of a 
beautiful blue colour on the coppery ground of the body, display great taste, and 
are nearly always disposed in odd numbers, which, as among so many other 
peoples, are supposed to be lucky. Amulets of stone, filigree, and the like, are 
also added to the ornaments to avert misfortune. In some tribes coils of brass 
wire are wound round the body, as among some African peoples on the shores of 
Victoria Nj'anza. 

The Daj'aks are much subject to skin diseases, due perhaps to the lack of 
salt in their diet. Victims of goitre also are as numerous in the Kutei basin as in 
certain Alpine and Pyrenean valleys. Even before the arrival of the Dutch the 
natives practised a sort of inoculation against small-pox, which in Borneo is of a 
very virulent character. 

The Dayaks believe in the existence of a supreme being, the Sang-Sang, who 
reveals his pleasure to the priests and communes with them in a " heavenly 
tongue." But the confidence of the people is chiefly in the bilians or priestesses, 
who understand how to conjure the evil spirits, dispel maladies, forecast the future, 
solve riddles and extempoiise songs. They are brought up from, infancy by 
the priests, and always chosen from the slave class, for they are common to all 
the married men of the community according to a fixed tariff. One of the 
marriage customs, probably of Chinese origin, is scarcely elsewhere equalled 
for refinement of cruelty. The wealthy Ot-Damons confine their daughters 
when eight or ten years old in a narrow, dimlj' lit cell, which they never leave 
for the next seven or eight years. During this period they are allowed to see 


neither parents nor friends, not even their own mother ; their only occupation is 
the weaving of mats, and their food is administered by a slave. When at last 
released from her prison, pale, emaciated, tottering on her small enfeebled feet, 
the maiden is considered a worthy prize for the wealthiest suitors ; a " piece of 
man," that is to say a slave, is immolated, and her person sprinkled with his 

Many Dayak tribes are still addicted to head-hunting, a practice which has 
made their name notorious, and which but lately threatened the destruction of the 
whole race. It is essentially a religious practice, so much so that no important 
act in their lives seems sanctioned unless accompanied by the offering of one or 
more heads. The child is born under adverse influences unless the father has 
presented a head or two to the mother before its birth. The young man cannot 
become a man and arm himself with the viandau, or war club, until he has 
beheaded at least one victim. The wooer is rejected by the maiden of his choice 
unless he can produce one head to adorn their new home. The chief fails to 
secure recognition imtil he can exhibit to his subjects a head secured by his own 
hand. No dj-ing person can enter the kingdom beyond the grave with honour 
unless he is accompanied by one or more headless companions. Every rajah owes 
to his rank the tribute of a numerous escort after death. 

Amongst some tribes, notably the Bahu Triugs, in the northern part of the 
Mahakkam basin, and the Ot-Damons of the Ujiper Kahajan, the religious 
custom is still more exacting. It is not sufficient to kill the victim, but before 
being dispatched he must also be tortured, the corpse sprinkled with his blood, 
and his flesh eaten under the eyes of the priests and priestesses, who perform the 
prefcribed rites. All this explains the terror inspired by the Dayaks in their 
neighbours, and the current belief that they are sprung from swords and daggers 
that have taken human form. 

A regidar head-hunting expedition is so much regarded as a pre-eminently 
religious act, that amongst the primitive tribes it must be preceded by a general 
confession. All sinners confess their shortcomings, submit to the pomali, that is, 
the taboo of the Polj'nesians, and do penance in the forests in order to be " restored 
to grace." When thus cleansed from all moral stain, they engage in their funeral 
dances, don their warlike costume of the skins of wild beasts, and put on their 
masks representing the open jaws of a tiger or crocodile. Thus disguised they 
sally forth to fall upon some distant tribe of friends or foes, and gather their 
harvest of heads or of victims reserved for the feast. The skulls of the enemy are 
usually held in the greatest respect; every attention is bestowed on them; at 
every meal the choicest morsels are placed in their mouth ; they are supplied with 
betel and tobacco ; they are treated as chiefs, in the hope that they may forget 
their own and attach themselves to the new tribe. " Your head is ours now ; 
help us to slay your former friends," is the language addressed to them. 

With the gradual spread of Islam the Daj^aks of the British and Dutch 
possessions are slowly abandoning their bloodthirsty usages. At the same time 
the head-hunters themselves, strange to sav, are otherwise the most moral 


people in the whole of Indonesia. Nearly all ai'e perfectly frank and honest. 
They scrupulously respect the fruits of their neighbours' labour, and in the tribe 
itself murder is unknown. For a period of twelve years imder the rule of Rajah 
Brooke only one case of homicide occurred in the principality of Sarawak, and in 
this case the criminal was a stranger adopted by the Dayaks. The natives also 
contrast favourably with the Malay, Chinese, or European immigrants for their 
temperance and forbearance. Although cheated and plundered on all sides, they 
preserve their good temper and cheerful disposition, indulge freely in merry- 
making, and display much ingenuity in inventing all kinds of games. 

Born artists, they not only" raise their dwellings on piles high above the 
periodical floods and bcj^ond the reach of nightly marauders, but also dispose the 
bamboo frames and gables in forms pleasing to the eye. They are eager collectors 
of porcelain and " old china," and to certain choice pieces are attributed divine 
properties. The tombs of their chiefs, and in some districts those of their dogs, 
are solidly constructed of iron-wood and embellished with carvings representing 
heads, birds, dragons' mouths, rivalling those of Bxirmah and Siam in delicacy of 
detail and instinctive harmony. 

In the centre of most villages stands the Imlai, or " chief house," a round or 
elongated building, erected, like all the others, on piles, but containing a vast 
apartment where the unmarried young men and all strangers pass the night, and 
which serves as an exchange, forum, and council chamber. Some of these Dayak 
palaces, occasionally treated as citadels, have a circuit of no less than 1,000 feet. 
Keppel saw one on the banks of the Lundu which was over 600 feet long, and 
which accommodated a whole tribe of four hundred souls. The natives also give 
proof of their engineering skill by throwing cleverly constructed bamboo bridges 
across rivulets, and sometimes even across rivers considerably over 300 feet 
broad. But they never lay down roads, and rarely even paths, almost their only 
highways being the water-courses. Their best tracks are made of the stems of 
trees placed endwise, over which they run rather than walk. At the least alarm 
the trees leading to their village are scattered and the track destroyed. 

The Sarawak Dayaks are good husbandmen, raising on the reclaimed land two 
crops in rotation, first rice, then sugar-cane, maize or vegetables. Then the grovind 
lies fallow for eight or ten years, during which it is again invaded by scrub and 
even forest growths. The granaries are a kind of basket fixed on high trees and 
approached by ladders or inclined planes of bamboo. The inland Dayaks are 
chiefly occupied in collecting the natural pi-oducts of the forest, ratan and gutta- 
percha for the European market, swallows' nests and bezoar stones for the Chinese. 
When absent from their homes in search of these objects, the women send little 
lamps of cocoanut shell adrift on the stream, as is also practised on the banks of 
the Ganges. These floating lights, burning in honour of the spirits of air and 
water, intercede with them for the absent toilers in the forests. 

Notwithstanding the almost inexhaustible natural resources of their fertile 
domain, even those half-civilised Dayaks who have given up the practice of 
head-hunting do not appear to increase in numbers. Their abundant crops 








j"ield ample both for their own wants and for a considerable export trade ; celi- 
bacy is unknown, all marrying in the prime of life ; yet their villages still remain 
scattered in small groups over vast spaces. This arrest of growth must be 
attributed partly to destructive epidemics, partly to the slight fecunditv of the 
women. The families average not more than from two to four, which, according 
to TTallace, is due to the life of hardships to which the women are condemned. 
Although otherwise highly respected by their husbands, all the hard work falls 
to their lot, and they thus become exhausted and prematurely aged. The 
consequence is that in the whole of Borneo the full-blooded Dayaks are estimated 
at not more than about a million altogether. 

The Mohammedan Malays, who are disseminating the tenets of Islam amongst 
the aborigines, are nearly all settled on the seaboard and along the banks of the 
rivers. Attracted by the profits of trade, they advance slowly from market to 
market towards the hilly regions of the interior, gradually transforming and 
assimilating the Dayaks by crossings and the influence of their higher cultiu-e. 
Although numerically inferior, they have already acquired the predominance, and 
every day adds to their ascendency. The Moslem element is also augmented bv 
Bugis and Bajaus from Celebes, by Javanese, Illanos from the Pliilippines, and a 
few Arabs. But more numerous than all together are the Chinese, who are settled 
chiefly in the seaports, and who even enjoy a monopoly of several industries, 
including that of gold- mining. The Europeans had scarcely established their 
permanent factories in Borneo when the Chinese made their appearance, and soon 
developed considerable settlements. From them the Dutch met with the most 
active resistance during their gradual conquest of the southern provinces. 

Of pure Chinese there are over thirty thousand, but with the half-castes thev 
may be estimated at about two hundred thousand, the great majority of whom 
have been settled in the island and intermingled with the Malays for several 
generations. The Dutch and English do not number more than a few hundred 
altogether ; but they hold the political power, in consequence of which thousands 
of the natives have begun to speak their languages and adopt their usages. 

DrxcH BoRXF.o. 

On the east coast Pontiaimk was the first town visited by its present masters, 
and it still continues to be the capital and commercial centre of the country. In 
18-56 it was ceded by the local sultan to the Dutch, by whom it has been made a 
free port. The wooden houses of Pontianak are disposed in two groups on either 
side of the Kapuas River, at the confluence of the Landak, about 10 miles from 
the coast. Some Hindu ruins, temples and statues, are seen here and there in the 
surrounding forests. 

North of Pontianak, in the petty states subject to the Dutch about the Sarawak 
frontier, the Chinese element preponderates. Attracted to Sambas and Moiitracfo 
by the rich gold and platinum mines, to Landak by its diamond fields, and now to 
the banks of the Kapuas by its coal deposits, they have gradually driven back the 



Daj^aks, and towards the middle of the present century had even constituted them- 
selves iu independent republics. In these kongui, or brotherhoods, the " elder 
brothers " and the " j'ounger " co-operated together, and pauperism was unknown. 

Animated by a common 

Fig. 51.— Banjekmassin. spirit of solidarity, they 

Scale 1 : 85,000. defended themselves 

with the greatest cou- 
rage, and exiDeditions of 
several thousand men 
were required to enforce 
submission to the Dutch 
rule. As in most other 
Chinese settlements, the 
staple trade of Sambas 
and Montrado is of 

Siikadana, situated 
on a lateral branch of 
the Kapuas delta, was 
formerly capital of one 
of the largest states in 
Borneo ; now it is a 
mere village facing the 
picturesque Kariiiiafa 
archipelago. These 

islands were at one time 
densely peopled, but are 
now almost uninhabited. 
The culminating peak of 
the chief island has an 
altitude of 3,310 feet. 

Between the Kapuas 
and Barito deltas every 
estuary has its market, 
every petty state its 
capital, where a Dutch 
official is now seated by 
the side of the descend- 

3,300 Yards. ant of the old sovereigus. 

But the coast population 

is so scanty that none of these places are now anything more than humble villages. 

Yet the upper valley of the Kahajan abounds in gold dust, which is collected by the 

Dayaks, who have hitherto prevented the Chinese from penetrating to their territory. 

Farther east the chief emporium is Banjennassin, or simply Banjer, capital of 


the south- westein provinces, and the largest city iu the whole of Borneo. Althouo-h 

commanding the entrance of the Barito, it does not stand on the estuary itself, but 
more to the east in a district intersected by a labyrinth of ever- shifting channels 


and backwaters. Here the Barito is joined by the Martapura, on which stands 
Banjermassin, the "Venice of Borneo," whose carved wooden houses line both 
banks for a space of over 2 miles. But these land residences are nearly every- 
where concealed by the rakits, or floating structures, anchored in mid-stream. The 
river is also animated by craft of all kinds, boats, canoes, gondolas, decked praus 
with raised cabins darting about in all directions. 

The Dutch occupy the island of Tatas, surrounded by the Malay and Chinese 
quarters, for all have their special districts, even the monkeys, who occupy the 
Isle of Flowers, where they receive the attentions of the natives. Banjermassin, 
which is accessible to vessels drawing 15 or 16 feet, is one of the busiest of the 
secondary ports in the Eastern Archipelago. Till recently it largely exported 
diamonds collected on the banks of the Martapura ; but since the discovery of the 
Cape mines this trade has ceased to be profitable, especially as the Sultan claims 
all stones of more than five carats. Yet such was the reputation of the Banjer- 
massin market that the local Chinese dealers imported crystals from the Cape to 
be afterwards exported as Martapura diamonds. In this district is also collected 
much gold dust, and the Pangaron coal mines above Martapura were lately yield- 
ing a yearly output of over 10,000 tons. Martapura was formerly the capital of 
the State, and the Sultan has still a palace in the place ; it lies 30 miles above and 
to the east of Banjermassin. 

The most thickly peopled and civilized region in Borneo is the basin of the 
river Bahan or Ncgara, where the Hindus appear to have first settled. Since the 
middle of the century the pojiulation of this small fluvial valley rose from 
60,000 to over 300,000 in 1878 ; consequently this part of Borneo is now rela- 
tively as densely inhabited as Java. Aniuiitai on the left bank of the Bahan, 
Negara and Margasari lower down on both banks, are all large trading and indus- 
trial places. The armourers of Negara were famous throughout Indonesia before 
the manufacture of arms was suppressed by the Dutch ; but the district still 
produces all the earthenware used in the country. 

Farther east some Javanese immigrants cultivate the fertile plains of the Ken- 
daiigan district, on the banks of the beautiful Amandit river. The new town of 
Mmcara-Bahan, ov Marahahan (Bekutnpai), at the junction of the Bahan and Barito, 
is the outport of the trade of Banjermassin with the Bahan basin. Its population is 
rapidly increasing, thanks to the spread of Islam amongst the surrounding Dayak 
tribes. Higher up, the only important place in the thinlj' peopled upper Barito 
valley is the village of Lnftintur {Lokhfon Tiior), at the Teweh confluence, 200 
miles from the coast. 

The various petty states on the south-east coastlands are still semi-independent. 
Pasir, capital of one of these states, is one of the chief places in Borneo. Lj'ing 
at the head of a delta navigable by small craft, Pasir, or the " Sands," as it is named 
from the surrounding dunes, carries on a brisk trade with the opposite coasts of 
Celebes, whence it has received numerous immigrants. 

Several important towns follow along the lower course of the Mahakkam in the 
kingdom of Kutei, which since 1844 has been half subject to the Dutch. Taiigarung, 




the capital, lies about GO miles above the estuarj- on the right bank of the Mahakkam, 
which is here a broad, tidal stream. But nearly all the trade of Kutei is centred 
in Samariiida, which lies lower down near the fork of the delta, where large Chinese 
junks ship the gutta-percha, rattans, timber, honey, edible birds'nests and other 
produce brought down on rafts from the upjjer regions of the Makakkam basin. 
Samarinda is the residence of the Dutch political agent, and of the Mohammedan 
imam, from whom the natives learn to write Arabic and recite verses from the 
Koran. Here the Bougis from Celebes have settled on the right bank, where thev 
have set up a strong republic, administering their own laws and enjoj'ing complete 

Fig. 53. — LOWEE COUESE of the MAHAKKAit. 
Scale 1 : 1,500,000. 

self-government. The Chinese and Malays occupy the left bank, residing either in 
floating houses or in dwellings raised on piles. Here are no roads or even tracks, 
all the communications between the different quarters being carried on exclusively 
by water. The town itself is one vast cemetery, headstones or carved boards 
marking the graves of the dead round about the abodes of the living. The few 
steamers touching at Samarinda find in the immediate neighbourhood, and 
especially at Pelarang, 5 or 6 miles farther down, a supply of coal in the rich 
mines, the property of the Sultan. Saiiga-Saiuja, at the head of the delta, was 
the royal residence before Samarinda. 


The little port of Sankolirang, on one of the inlets north of theMahakkam delta, 
is now a mere fishing village ; but to judge from the surrounding ruins it was at one 
time an important centre of Hindu culture in East Borneo. Samhiliinm, Gnnong- 
Telur, Bulangan and Tidung, petty states following north of Kutei as far as British 
North Borneo, are amongst the least known parts of the island. A few Dutch 
officials are stationed at two or three points along the coast, in order to maintain 
the right of possession against the pretentions of the Sultan of Sulu, the claims 
of Spain, and the further annexations by England. A large jjart of these territories, 
long harassed by corsairs, is almost uninhabited. 

Administration of Dutch Borneo. 

The Dutch portion of Borneo is divided into two provinces, that of the west 
with capital Pontianak, and that of the east with capital Banjermassin. As in 
Sumatra, the Dutch functionaries establish their direct authority very gradually. 
Sultans and rajahs are still at the head of the different states, although several of 
them, "protected" by a Dutch garrison, are practically mere pensioners of the 
government. Others, on the contrary, such as the Sultans of Pasir and Kutei, 
being more removed from the centre of authority, are still real sovereigns, although 
gradually sinking to the humble position of vassals. Even In the towns, where the 
Dutch have long been indisputable masters and strictly obeyed, they prefer to rule 
through native agency. The Chinese kap-thai and kapitan, the Malay panum- 
bahan, pangeran and tomongong, are held responsible for the conduct of their subor- 
dinates. The Dutch Resident abstains from direct interference in the local 
affairs of each nation, so long as it keeps the peace and pays the imposts regularly. 

The Dayaks of the interior are liable only to a poll-tax, although the chief 
charged with its collection contrives too often to levy it four or five times over. 
The sultans farm the opium crop and the customs, and according to Bock their 
surest source of revenue is usury. They lend to their subjects at exorbitant 
interests and on solid security. 

In the Appendix will be found a table of the Dutch administrative divisions, 
with their apjjroximate areas and populations. 

SijLtaxate of Brunei and British Borneo. 

During the first half of the century, nearlj^all North Borneo was still subject to 
the Sultan of Brunei, at that time the most powerful potentate in the Island that 
bears his name. At present his dominions have been enormously curtailed. Hope- 
less of resisting the demands of those more powerful than himself, he has gradually 
ceded most of his empire to the British. First went the island of Labuan, com- 
manding the approach to his capital ; then followed the southern region of Sarawak, 
surrendered to a soldier of fortune, and lastly the whole of the north handed over 
to an English financial company. What remains Is scarcely a fourth of his for- 
mer possessions, and even this is already under the effective suzerainty of England, 
pending its official annexation to the British Empire. 



Like most places on the coast, Brunei, the Sultan's residence, is an amphibious 
town, but presents a more singular aspect even than Pontianak or Banjermassin. 
The picturesque Malay structures are not here mingled with flat European houses. 
The stream, at this point considerably over a mile wide, is lined by long avenues 
of inhabited boats, while the neighbouring bay is crowded with Chinese junks and 
praus from Mindanao. After two years of navigation amid the oceanic wastes, the 

Fig. .54.— Behnei. 
Scale 1 : 35,000. 


32 Feet and 

.1,100 Yards. 

companions of Magellan were surprised at the spectacle presented by this great city, 
which, according to Pigafetta, at that time contained " twenty-five thousand 
hearths." The present inhabitants, reduced to about ten thousand, are described 
as mild and timid, impoverished, crushed by heavy imposts, all slaves of the 
Sultan. Their chief industry is the manufacture of arms and coppcrware. The 
neighbouring Kadyan and Murut tribes have already been partly converted to 



At the time of its cession to Great Britain in 1846, Lubuan, the island of the 
"roadstead," was completely uninhabited and covered by dense forest. But in 
annexing it to their colonial empire despite the claims of the Dutch, the English 
hoped it might become an important station on the highroad between Singapore 
and Hongkong. It lies, however, somewhat out of the direct track of shipping, 
while its coal mines, actively worked for some years, have been deluged by the 
tropical rains of those regions. They are of older formation than those of the 
mainland, which belong to the Jurassic and even more recent epochs. The island 
is inhabited chiefly by Malays and Chinese, and although j)rovided with a governor 
and legislative council, had onlj^ nineteen Europeans in 1884. Since the suspension 
of mining operations its trade has considerably diminished. 


The territory of Sarawalc, lying between the state of Brunei and the Dutch 
possessions, and skirted on the west by the main Bornean range, forms part of the 
British colonial empire only since the year 1888. It belongs to the Brooke family, 
which holds it as a fief, and the head of which takes the Indian title of Rajah. 
But these English vassals, more powerful than their Malay suzerain, have steadily 
enlarged their dominion since 1841, and Sarawak is at present more extensive, 
more densely peopled, and far more opulent than Brunei itself. But it is still 
very sparsely inhabited, containing perhaps not more than 300,000 souls in a total 
area of 36,000 square miles. A recent treaty secures to England the control over 
its internal administration. 

Like most other towns on the Bornean seaboard, the capital, Sarawak (properly 
Kuching) lies on a navigable river, some distance from the coast, and above the 
delta, whose two chief branches are accessible with difficulty to large vessels. 
Commanded by woodland heights and surrounded with gardens and orchai-ds, the 
town presents a pleasant aspect ; although its British residents regret that the 
capital has not been placed some 20 miles to the north-east, on the breezy and 
salubrious slopes of a headland at the entrance of the Moratabas river. But it is 
now too late to displace a town which possesses some fine buildings, warehouses, 
covered markets, docks, rich plantations, and quite a network of well-kept roads. 
Its Dayak, Malay and Chinese population is rapidly increasing both by immigra- 
tion and excess of births over the mortality, and Kuching, an obscure village in 
1850, has now over 20,000 inhabitants. 

Some antimony and quicksilver mines in the upper basin of the river formerly 
yielded large profits, but have now lost much of their value. They are, however, 
stiU occupied by Chinese miners, who also work the gold washings, and the 
diamond and coal fields of the Sadong valley. The most promising districts at 
present are those of Lundu, west of Sarawak, where the planters cultivate rice, 
gambler, and pepper. One of the baj^s on the Lundu coast is noted for its turtles, 



the fishing of which is strictly regulated, and a close season enforced for the 
collection of the eggs. 

East of Sarawak the broad and fertile Lupar valley, with its rich coalfields, has 
probably the brightest future prospects, thanks to its easy natural communications 
with the Kapuas basin and the interior of Borneo. SimaiLe/aiiff, its capital, is a 
large Malay village 80 miles above the estuary at the head of the fluvial navi- 

The Eejang basin, comprising the northern portion of Sarawak, has already 
developed a considerable export trade, especially in sago and bilian (iron wood). 

Fig. 00. — Saeawax. 
Scale 1 : 900,000. 

East oF Gr.e 


This trade, carried on by Chinese junks, is centred chiefly in the port of Rejang, 
on the southern branch of the delta. Sibu, another Malay town at the head of 
the delta, is the great market for the interior, and here the Government has built 
a fort to overawe the surrounding Dayaks. The Milanos, one of their most numer- 
ous tribes, have been partially converted to Islam. They are a repulsive race 
with coarse limbs, uncouth carriage, and milky-white, unwholesome complexion. 
The custom of treading out the sap of the sago-palm has given them broad, flat 
feet, while the heads of their children are deformed by means of boards, like those 
of the North American Flatheads. At the death of a rich Milano his sago plan- 
tation is cut down, so that his estate may accompany him to the next world. 

The increasing trade of Sarawak is furthered by about a hundred European, 
Chinese, and Malav vessels, besides a regular service of steamers plying between 
Kuching and Singapore. With the traffic the revenue also increases, leaving an 



annual surplus devoted to public works and instruction. The rajah exercises 
almost absolute power, choosing his own council of Europeans or Malays, and 
holding himself responsible to no man. By a slow process of extinction slavery 
died out with the year 1888. The regular army of about three hundred native 
soldiers draws its officers from a civil and military school attended by one hundred 
and fifty students. 

The territorial divisions of Sarawak, named from the chief rivers watering 
them, are, Lundu, Sarawak, Sadong, Batang Lupar, Saribas, Kalukah, Eejang, 
Mukah, and Bintulu. 

North Borneo. 

The British territory of Sabah, better known as North Borneo, has been con- 
stituted by successive acquisitions by purchase. In 1865 a United States consul 
had already obtained from the Sultan of Brunei the grant of a portion of this 
region, and founded an American company for its development. But these 
essaj^s ended in financial ruin, and an English corporation had little difiiculty in 
securing the privileges of the bankrupt American speculators. Fresh concessions 
made in 1877 and 1878 enlarged the area of the districts detached from Brunei and 
ceded to a small group of British capitalists, who also obtained from the Sultan of 
the Sulu Ai-chipelago the domains which he possessed or claimed on the mainland. 
By means of a few pensions they thus acquired a whole kingdom, for which ihey, 
moreover, procured recognition and a charter from the English Crown. 

The limits of the new state are fixed on the west coast by Mount Marapok near 
Brunei Bay, and on the east side by the course of the Sibuko River. Numerous 
travellers have been encouraged by the Company to explore the interior, to trace 
the rivers to their sources, scale the mountains and passes, study the mineral and 
agricultural resources of the land, and select the best sites for future ^plantations. 

Thanks to these explorations North Borneo is now known to be the finest, most 
picturesque, and promising region of the whole island, although at the time of the 
British occupation one of the least peopled. In the Kina-Batangan basin Pryer 
found only three villages and one isolated house for a space of two hundred and 
ninety miles, and the whole population, scattered along the coasts and river-banks, 
scarcely numbered one hundred and fifty thousand souls ten years ago. But the 
suppression of tribal wars and piratical expeditions, the introduction of vaccination, 
the arrival of Chinese immigrants, and the establishment of orderlj' government 
have been followed by a rapid increase of the free and enslaved inhabitants. By 
the terms of its charter the Company engages to prevent all foreigners, European 
or Chinese, from holding slaves ; but it is not bound to sujipress servitude amongst 
the tribes. 

In any case the social condition of the people cannot fail to be rapidly modified 
under the influence of the Chinese, who flock to the recently founded towns and 
take the management of all new enterprises. To the Chinese is even attributed the 
old Bornean civilisation, traces of which still survive here and there, and which is 

NOKTH B0E^^20. 


recalled by the names of Kina-Balu and Kina-Batangan. The local Dayaks are 
commonly designated by the collective terms, Dusun and Idaan. The Bule- 
Dupis tribe, near Sandakan Bay, appears to be distinguished from all the others by 
their almost white complexion and " European profile." They are regarded as 
almost pure representatives of the Indonesian type, but seem doomed to extinc- 

For their new capital, E/opiira, the English have selected a favourable site on 
the magnificent Sandakan Bay, an inlet on the north-east coast, the entrance of 
which is completely sheltered from all winds, and which ramifies for over 20 miles 
inland between sandstone cliffs terminating in wooded heights. On the silt at the 

Fig. 56. — Sandakan. 
Scale 1 : 900,000. 


oF Greenwich 


entrance there is a depth of no less than 26 feet at low water, and shipping can 
moor at the landing stage in 23 or 24 feet. In the course of eight j'eai-s Elopura, 
or Sandakan, as it is more commonly called, has become a flourishing little seaport 
with over 5,000 inhabitants, of whom two-thirtls are Chinese. In the immediate 
vicinity it possesses abundant elements of future commercial expansion — coal in 
the hills skirting the roadstead, ironwood and other natural products in the sur- 
rounding forests. Large tobacco plantations have been made on the opposite side 
of the port, and the sago-palm now thrives in this part of Borneo, where it was 
hitherto unknown. 

Through coast lagoons or backwaters Sandakan communicates dircctlj- with the 



mouth of the Kina-Batangan, the hirgest river in North Borneo, and navigable by 
steaniers a long way inland. At Malapi, the riverain port, the Chinese have a. depot 
for the edible nests collected in the caves of Mount Gomanton, lying some miles 
farther west. The entrance to one of these limestone caves rises to a height of 
900 feet, and in the evening the dense clouds of esculent swallows take three- 
quarters of an hour to pass through this vast portal to their roosting-places. The 
annual sale of the nests yields £5,000 to the Chinese dealers. Other caverns, 
occupied some by swallows, others by bafs, occur in all the spurs of the North 
Eornean ranges and especially in the river gorges, and all contain rich deposits of 
guano still untouched. 

The Segama basin, south of and parallel to the Kina-Batangan, also possesses 
gold-washings, which are said to be very rich, and already attract numerous 
Chinese miners. A carriage road has been constructed from Sandakan Bay to 
these mines. 

One of the vital points of the new colony lies at the southern extremity of 
Marudu Bay, where the river of like name reaches the coast. Here the village of 
Bongon, the commercial centre of the whole country and already surrounded bj' 
extensive tobacco and sugar plantations, is the natural emporium for North Borneo 
and the islands of Mallawalli, Banguey, and Balambangan, which form an extension 
of the mainland towards the Philippines. In 1773 the English had already 
founded a settlement in Balambangan ; which, however, lasted only two years. 
The port of Kudat, in Marudu Bay, although neglected till 1881, seems destined 
one day to become one of the chief commercial centres in the Eastern Archipelago. 
Formerly the two rivers Tampusuk and Tarawan were notorious resorts of the 
Illanos (Lanon, Lanun), pirates from Mindanao, against whom the English had to 
send several expeditions. 

On the west coast Gaya Bay, still more spacious than Kudat, offers one of the 
best anchorages in the China waters. The whole British fleet might here easily 
ride at anchor, and supply itself with coal from the beds in the surrounding cliffs. 
Yet the British settlement has been founded, not on this magnificent bay, but at 
Mempakol, facing Labuan. 

The rapid development of trade in North Borneo is mainly due to the tobacco 
plantations on the east coast. The Sagut and Labuk fluvial valleys yield a fine 
elastic leaf much prized, especially for wrapping cigars. In 1887, about 200,000 
acres were already planted, and in that j'ear 150,000 additional acres had been 
bought by speculators for the same purpose. Thanks to this rapid increase of 
productive land, the public revenues have also been considerably augmented, 
though still failing to balance the expenditure. There is no army properly so 
called, and only a few hundred police, raised chiefly amongst the Dayaks of other 
parts of Borneo. All the tribal chiefs are required to take an oath of allegiance 
to the Company and pay the poll-tax. 

The state is divided into the four administrative provinces of Dent and Keppel 
on the west coast, Alcocl; in the north-east, and East-Coast in the east and south- 
east. In the last-mentioned is situated the capital. 

JAVA. 149 

Java and Madura. 

In the Indonesian tropical world Java ranks only fourth for size ; but it 
contains over two-thirds of the whole population, while the relative value of its 
productions is still more considerable. For a period of at least twenty centuries it 
has surpassed all the other regions of the archipelago in jDopulation, abundance of 
resources, and the progress of civilisation. First visited and colonised by the 
Hindus, it soon became the centre of their influence in Indonesia, and from that 
period the Javanese have enjoyed a material and social pre-eminence in this region. 
Their tribes, to whom the Buddhist missionaries had brought the words of peace 
and universal brotherhood, became fused in a imited nationality, thus entering on 
a new historic era unattainable by the barbarous and savage inhabitants of the 
adjacent islands. Under the subsequent Arab and Dutch sway the imjjulse given 
by the first Indian civilisers made itself still felt by the Javanese populations. 

According to some authorities the very name by which the island is still 
designated is of Hindu origin. The term Jahadiit, known to Ptolemy, is merely 
the vulgar form Jara-jipa, the " Island of Barley," apparently so named by the 
Hindu immigrants from a cereal which looked like the barley of India, but which 
was probably millet {ixiniciim italiciini). Nevertheless other etymologists sought 
an explanation of the word Java or Javi in the native languages. The Sundanese 
of the western districts called themselves Jelma Bumi, that is, " Men of the Soil," 
designating their neighbours of the central and eastern jjrovinces as Tyang Javi, 
or " Foreigners," and the region itself as Tanah Javi, that is, " Foreign " or 
" Outer Laud." This hypothesis is strengthened by the fact that other outer 
regions, notably Sumatra and Bali, also bore the name of Java, and at the dawn of 
modern history, the Australian continent itself is vaguely indicated under the 
appellation of " Great Java." 

But at the close of the sixteenth century, when the first Dutch traders founded 
their factories in the present Java, it was already known by this name throughout 
its whole extent. It is the Zabej of the Arabs, and to it the term Nusa Eendang, 
or " Island of Great Mountains," seems also at one time to have been commonly 

At present this marvellous region is almost as well known as the lands of West 
Europe. The works relating to it are already numbered by the thousand, it has 
been studied from everj' point of view, and explored in all directions by eminent 
geologists, geographers, naturalists, anthropologists, historians, and engineers. Its 
triangulation has been completed since 1882, and its relief in all its details is figured 
on carefully prepared topographical charts. Each volcano has even been specially 
described in section, plan, and elevation, so that all changes of form may hence- 
forth be recorded with as much precision as those of Vesuvius and Etna. 

Java was formerly supposed to consist exclusively of eruptive rocks upheaved 
from the bed of the Indian Ocean. But we now know that about three-fifths of 
the sua-face is composed of sedimentary rocks, plains, and uplands, and that the 
whole island is continued northwards in the direction of Billiton and Borneo, and 



north-westwards towards Sumatra, by a level marine plateau covered by less than 
50 fathoms of water. Above this flooded plain rise a few low insular groups, 
such as the " Thousand Isles," north-west of Batavia, and the twenty-six islets of 
Karimon-Java, north of Semarang Bay. Bawean, with its fringing reef and cone 
2,000 feet high, is distinguished by its igneous origin from all the other 
islands in these waters. Farther east the Solombo group, about midway between 
Madura and Borneo, is very low, nowhere presenting any eminence, except on 
Great Solombo. 

Madura itself may be regarded as a simple dependence of Java, forming its 
north-eastern extension. On their north side both mainly consist of low-lying 
plains continued under the water by reefs and sandbanks. The south coast, on 
the contrary, is steep and rocky, plunging abruptly into the oceanic depths. Both 

Fig. 57. — Chief Volcanoes in Java. 
Scale 1 : 10,000,000. 





seaboards are indented by bays and inlets penetrating some considerable distance 
inland, although as a whole the island presents the almost geometrical aspect of a 
long quadrilateral, nearly parallel with the equator. West and east it extends 
from the Java-hoofd (Java head) in a straight line for 620 miles to Java's Oost- 
hoek (Java's East Point). But north and south the distance varies greatly, 
narrowing towards the centre to about half of its normal breadth. Excluding 
Madura and the smaller indentations, the coast-line has a total length of 2,100 

Volcanoes of Java. 

The western has a much greater moan elevation than the eastern section of the 
island, forming a plateau from 2,000 to 3,000 feet high. Here also the mountains 
are connected by lofty ridges or saddles, the former intervening valleys having 

JAVA. 151 

been to a great extent filled in by outflows of lavas and showers of ashes and scoriaj. 
Eastwards the island falls gradually nearly to the level of the sea ; but towards the 
extreme east the mountains again rise with a uniform slope from base to summit. 
The volcanoes, which follow from one end of the island to the other, are not 
developed in a continuous chain, and in many places are separated one from the 
other by a distance of 30 miles. 

But it is noteworthy that they are often grouped two, three, or four together, 
forming independent ridges, whose axes run, not parallel with, but obliquely 
athwart the main axis of the island. They are in fact disposed mainly in the 
direction of the axis of Sumatra, while by a remarkable contrast those of Sumatra 
itself run parallel with Java. Thus the crevasses through which the lavas were 
ejected appear to have been caused in both islands as it were by a sort of inter- 
change of the igneous forces. The underground energies are also about balanced, 
for the Javanese Semeru is only a few feet lower than Indrapura and Korinchi, the 
highest volcanoes in the neighbouring region. Altogether the mountains of Java 
are not inferior in mean altitude to those of Sumatra, while the absence of subja- 
cent terraces gives them a greater relative elevation above their base. 

Java also differs from Sumatra in the rarity of longitudinal valle3's between 
the parallel crests and in the absence of lacustrine basins. The mean altitude of 
the whole island is estimated by Junghuhn at somewhat less than 1,650 feet. 

Of the volcanoes, two near the north coast, Karang at the north-west corner, 
and Murio (Murya) in the peninsula east of Semarang Bay, appear to belong 
to an indejjendent igneous system. Both occupy isolated positions on the j)lains, 
so that a rise in the former case of 1,000, in the latter of 15 or IG feet above the 
present sea-level, would suffice to convert them into islands. Thej' are still sur- 
rounded by alluvial deposits which rest against the northern flanks of hills belong- 
ing to the tertiary age and disposed parallel with the main Javanese axis. In the 
same way the volcanoes on the opposite side skirt the northern base of other 
tertiary heights which run in a line with the south coast. Java in fact, according 
to Junghuhn, consists of two islands merged in one ; but the southern alone is 
intact, of the northern nothing remaining except fragments. It has disappeared 
between the provinces of Cheribon and Yajjara, where the seaboard develops a 
large marine gulf, and beyond which Madura is separated by a strait from the 
Javanese plains. 

Nevertheless, the original coastline may still be recognised, being continued 
eastwards by a series of small groups comprising the Sapudi, Kangean, and Pater- 
noster archipelagoes. Southwards is developed, like a vast breakwater, the parallel 
chain of large islands from Bali to Nila, forming an eastern extension of the main 
Javanese volcanic range. The terminal points of the disruptured northern island 
would appear to be Krakatau in the west, and in the east Gunung Api, or " Moun- 
tain of Fire," north of "\Yetter Island. 

Both Karang and Murio appear to be at present in a state of repose, the former 
alone with the twin Pidasari cone emitting some sul2)hurous vapours. But in the 
Southern chain, Salak, highest of the first volcanic group going eastwards (7,300 



feet) was still active in 1699, when streams of mud and sand were ejected in such 
vast quantities that some of the neighbouring valleys were completely dammed up 
and converted into temporary lakes. The main line of the Javanese railway sys- 
tem passes along the east foot of Salak, here crossing the Tjitjurug pass at a height 
of 1,700 foet. 

East of this pass follow the far loftier cones of Gede, or the " Great " (9,800 
feet), which gives its name to a whole group, and the neighbouring Mandala- 
Wangi, which exceeds it by 200 feet. The Gede, properly so culled, has frequently 

Fig. 58. — GrEDE Volcano. 
Snale 1 : 80,000. 

ejected scoriaB, and from its breached crater, about 4,000 feet in circumference, jets 
of vapour are still emitted ; sulphur is also deposited on the encircling walls, while 
copious thermal streams flow from the flanks of the mountain. Gede is connected 
by a narrow ridge with another and far larger crater, which from the Sala wall on 
the south to Panggerango on the north side has a circuit of about two and a half 
miles. It is wooded to the summit, terminating in an inclined terrace, whence 
numerous rivulets rapidly converge in a broad stream, which was till recently 
visited by the rhinoceros. From this terrace, the highest point of observation in 



West Java, a panoramic view is commauded of both seas, with the intervening hills 
and plains, forests, villages, and surrounding plantations. 

South of the Gede highlands the tertiary rocks, limestones, clays, and sand- 

stones attain their greatest development. Nearly everywhere carved into steep cliffs 
800 to 1,000 feet high, these white and yellowish formations rise in the Breng- 
Brcng Peak to an altitude of over 6,500 feet. But farther east they disappear 
beneath the talus of scoriaj and lava streams of the Patuha volcano (7,800 feet). 


Here the crater is flooded witli an " alum lake," tliat is, with water saturated with 
sulphur and alum, at the normal atmospheric temperature. But a few miles to the 
north-east, at the source of the Chi Widei, lies a cirque of hot mud emitting acid 
vapours of a sulj)hurous odour, which are disintegrating the surrounding rocks. 

East of Patuha the volcanic cones follow in great apparent disorder, connected 
with each other by elevated ridges, and enclosing upland valleys, whence the 
streams flow through narrow outlets to northern river basins. One of these volca- 
noes, the Malabar, or Rose Mountain (7,800 feet), no longer retains its conic shape ; 
its crater is almost effaced, and its former activity is indicated only by two thermal 
springs. But farther south. Mount "Wajang (7,200 feet) still preserves on its 
west flank a magnificent solfatara, a little geyser with a jet of 10 feet, recurring 
at intervals of two or three minutes, and a stream of sidphur and alum waters. 
Stdl more active is Papandajan, or the "Forge" (8,700 feet), whose breached 
crater contains nearly all the elements of volcanic laboratories, sulphurous swamps 
at boiling point, mud cones, snorting, groaning, and ejecting mud and stones, hot 
springs and jets rushing out with a hissing sound. All the voices of the volcano 
are merged in one deafening yet rhythmic uproar, suggesting a vast workshop with 
the voice of a thousand hammers mingling with its hissing jets of vapour. A 
rivulet which enters the " Forge " pure and limpid, emerges boiling and saturated 
with sulphur. In 1772, Papandajan was the scene of one of tie most tremendous 
eruptions of modern times, but at that time the district had been visited by no 
Eui'opean naturalist, and the reports of the natives are of a contradictorj^ character. 

North of Papandajan, but forming part of the same group, stands the Gunoug 
Guntur, or " Thunder Mountain " (7,450 feet), which, unlike all the other Java- 
nese mountains, is absolutely bare from base to summit. It forms a huge greyish 
black mass jDresenting a uniform surface broken only by the lava blocks half buried 
in the scoria. During eruptions the whole cone has been illumined by the burning 
ashes ejected from its crater, for Guntur ranks with Lamongan as the most active 
volcano in Java. The surrounding plantations have often been covered with the 
ashes ejected during its outbursts. In 1843 Junghuhn estimated at ten million 
tons the quantity of sands thrown to a height of 10,000 feet, and for a time darken- 
ing the face of the sun ; yet this was only a minor display. 

Galimgung, or the " Cymbal Mountain" (7,400 feet), although less active than 
Guntur, was the theatre of two terrific outbm'sts in 1822, when the din was heard 
over the whole island. The showers of stones and ashes were on both occasions 
accompanied by a deluge of mud, the pent-up reservoirs overflowing on the sur- 
rounding plains, and covering villages, rice fields, coffee plantations, and forests 
with a layer of greyish blue mud in some places 50 feet thick. All vegetation 
had disappeared for a space of over 12 miles, and 114 villages, with a total 
population of 4,000, were completely inundated. Magnificent forests have since 
I'esumed possession of the flanks of the volcano and surrounding district. A 
little to the west lies the Telaga Bodas, or " White Lake," where the sulphurous 
clays are kej)t at boiling point by incessant jets of vapour. In the neighbourhood 
is the famous Pajagalan, or "Field of Slaughter," which emits deadly exhalations, 

JAVA. 155 

and which is always strewn with the carcases of wild cats, squirrels, snakes, birds, 
and at times even tigers and rhinoceroses, suffocated by the carbonic acid, and pre- 
served from putrefaction. But the emanations vary considerably in quantity and 
even in quality, and occasionally the district may be traversed without risk. 

The other volcanoes of this region, such as Tjikurai (9,350 feet), and Sawal 
(5,860 feet), have been quiescent throughout the historic period, and no igneous 
phenomena occur on the chain of hills falling gradually eastwards down to the 
Tanduwi delta. 

The elevated Bandong plain, which stretches north of the Preang volcanoes, and 
in which are collected the headstreams of the Tarum, is dominated on the north by 
a volcanic system running west and east. Burangrang (6,840 feet), the first link 
of the chain, forms a truchytic mass whose eruptions were antecedent to all history ; 
but it is followed bj' Tangkuban Prahu (6,900 feet), which is still active. Tampomas 
(5,600 feet), at the eastern extremity of the system, seems to be also extinct, although 
some sulphurous gases still escape from a fissure in its flank. 

Gunong Tjerimai (10,200 feet), near Cheribon Bay, and also called Mount 
Cheribon from the town at its foot, has a perfectly regular crater some hundred 
yards deep, inhabited by thousands of swallows. Beyond this point Java is con- 
tracted between two gulfs, which forjnerly penetrated much farther inland than 
at present. Here the main waterparting falls to about 3,000 feet ; but in the 
neighbourhood Mount Slamat, a recent and perfectly regular cone, rises in isolated 
majesty to a height of 11,400 feet. Its sloj)es are forest-clad to within 2,500 feet 
of the crater, which ejects with the roar of a cataract a dense column of vapours, 
which the upper atmospheric currents alw^aj's carry westwards. 

The volcano, of which Prahu (8,420 feet) is but a lateral ruin, was in prehistoric 
times probably the culminating point of Java. But the upper cone was blown 
away during former eruptions, leaving nothing but fragments of its perifihery, 
Prahu on the north, Pakuoejo on the east and Wisma on the south side. All the 
intermediate space is occupied by the irregular plateau of Dieng, a term often 
applied to thewhole group. This plateau, on which stands the highest village in 
Java, in the midst of tobacco plantations, presents some of the most remarkable 
igneous phenomena in the island. Here are grouped in close proximity eruptive 
craters, lava streams, hot lakes saturated with chemical substances, solf ataras, thermal 
springs, rivulets of boiling water, gases and vapour jets. Here also, in a depres- 
sion between two streamlets, lies the Pakaraman, or Guwa Upas, that is, " Valley 
of Death," described by some travellers as a desolate plain, on which no one dares 
to venture except at imminent peril. Yet it is nothing but a simple cavity a few 
yards broad, whence is occasionally emitted a little carbonic acid gas. Its celebi-ity 
is doubtless due to the religious traditions associated with the Dieng plateau, 
which was formerly much frequented by the worshippers of Siva, god of destruc- 
tion. Even on the terminal crest of Prahu, not far from the summit, are still seen 
abandoned temples, while other sanctuaries are scattered round about. Structures 
have also been recognised which served as refuges for the pilgrims, besides a gigantic 
flight of steps by which the faithful reached the edge of the jjlateau, and an under- 



ground caual which diaiued a neighbouring marshy valley. In one of the caves 
Junghuhn even discovered a Hindu inscription, whicli, however, has not yet been 
decijjhered. The importance of the architectural works attests the presence of a 
co'nsiderable population in these uplands during the period of Sivaite civiKsation. 
But the volcanic eruptions, aided perhaps by the zeal of Mussulman propagandists, 
spread desolation over the Dieng plateau, which reverted to a state of nature till 
the beginning of the present century, when the first attempts were again made to 
bring it under cultivation. 

South of this district follow the superb cones of Siudoro (10,400 feet) and 

Fig. 60.— DiENO. 
Scale 1 : 00,000. 

Sumbing (11,000), known to navigators in these waters as the " Two Brothers." 
Siudoro, that is " Majestic," is the finest of all the Javanese volcanoes, with per- 
fectly regular outlines and truncated cone, as if the summit had been cleaved by 
the stroke of a sword. The lavas flowing uniformly down its flanks have pene- 
trated northwards into the breached crater of Telerejj, and southwards to the 
more precipitous slopes of Sumbing. Although higher than Sindoro, Sumbing is 
less symmetrical ; but it is specially distinguished by the surprising regularitj^ of 
the ridges radiating in all directions from the summit to the base with intervening 
ravines excavated by the running waters to depths of from 250 to 300 feet. The Two 
Brothers appear to be all but extinct, the only indication of activity being a few 



jets of vapour. Sumbing occupies almost exactly the centre of Java, and the 
neighbouring ilount Tidar (1,680 feet) is spoken of by the natives as the "nail " 
by which the island has been fixed to the surface of the globe. 

Telerep is connected by a low water-parting with Ungaran (6,800 feet). 
which is itself connected by a range of hills with the twin cones of Meibabu 

Fig. fil. — GtraoNO Sewtt. 

Scile 1 : 75,000. 

^- ... 'M 

S- '-' 

(10,320 feet) and Merapi (9,-jOO) facing Sindoro and Sumbing on the opposite 
side of the broad Kadu valley. Merbabu appears to have been in repose since 
1560, when the last recorded outburst took place. But Merapi, the "destroying 
fire," is in a continual state of restlessness, ejecting from its terminal crater a 
constant volume of white vapour, which sets with the trade-winds steadily towards 



the west. Nevertheless, the eruptions that have taken place during the historic 
period have been less terrific than those of some other Javanese volcanoes. Some 
of Merapi's trachytic walls have a columnar formation resembling that of the 
Staffa basalts. 

East of Merapi the igneous system is completely interrupted bj' the alluvial 
valley of the river Solo. In this part of the island the main range consists of 

Fig. 62. — South-West Slopes of Kelut. 
Scale 1 : 200,000. 


'/' i i^>/'/;l 

East oF Greenw ch 

^ V^\ i J..!^ 

milk-white limestone rocks known by the name of Gunong Sewu, or the " Thou- 
sand Mountains," and developing a long line of cliffs on the southern seaboard. 
The highest peaks rise to about 2,000 feet ; but most of the " thousand " 
eminences scattered over the plateau range from 100 feet to little over 200 
feet. They are separated by winding valleys shaded by the finest forest 
trees. Some of the narrow longitudinal dales, mostly overgrown with tall grasses, 

JAVA. 159 

are closed, at both extremities, the water which accumulates during the wet 
monsoon escaping through underground luirangit, or channels, seawards. The 
Gunong Sewn district is described by Junghuhn as the loveliest in Java, its 
shady avenues, gently sloping hills, grassy dells and villages surrounded by 
gardens recalling the sjdvan beauties of more temperate lands. 

North-east of the Gunong Sewu and of a more elevated semicircle of other 
sedimentary hills, the Gunong Lawu rises in nearly isolated majesty to an 
altitude of 10,800 feet. The three domes of this volcano, which was formerly 
venerated by the worshippers of Siva, are not pierced by craters; but vapours still 
escape from the deep crevasses on the south side. The Gunong Willis (8,500 feet), 
some 50 miles beyond Lawu in the same igneous range, no longer presents the 
form of a volcano. The supreme cone was probably blown away during some 
prehistoric explosion, and now nothing remains except a long, irregular, and 
craterless eminence. Thermal sjDrings and solfataras, however, still attest the 
existence of underground forces, both here and in the smaller Mount Pandan 
(3,000 feet), which stands out on the plains to the north of Willis. 

South of Surabaya and its fluvial delta, Java is occupied by a transverse system 
of other volcanoes, of which the Gunong Kelut (5,750 feet), lying nearest of 
Willis, is the most dreaded by the natives. Its crater, at least 650 feet deep, is 
flooded by a fresh-water tarn, whose contents were estimated by Junghuhn in 
1844 at 2,000 millions of cubic feet. During eruptions, when the igneous outlet 
lies below the lake, the liquid mass is converted into steam, which rises in dense 
volumes emitting flashes of light and then falling on the slopes in tremendous 
downpours of water mixed with the sands ejected by the volcano. Channels of 
trachj-tic scoriae furrowing the flanks of the mountain from summit to base recall 
the rush of these sudden torrents, which deluge the surrounding plains, sweeping 
away the crops, uprooting forest trees, and razing the villages to the ground. 
In 1848 the regular detonation of the gases which changed the lake into clouds of 
vapour, produced an uproar that was heard throughout nearly the whole of 
Indonesia. The Macassar people in Celebes, 500 miles off and under the lee of 
the explosion, were terrified by what seemed like the roar of artillery, and 
despatched vessels to scour the neighbouring seas. 

The other volcanoes of this system are extinct, or at least have retained but a 
feeble remnant of their former energy. The triple-crested Kawi, whose highest 
peak, the Butak, attains an altitude of 9,500 feet, has preserved no solfataras, and 
only a solitary thermal spring; the mighty Arjuno (11,000 feet), where the 
Sivaites formerly offered sacrifices, emits vapours only from one fissure, while 
Penanggimgan (5,500 feet), last of the chain south of Surabaya, appears to be 
completely quiescent. Nevertheless, in the main axis of the system, some 12 
miles from Surabaj'a, two mud volcanoes have made their appearance, which are 
about 30 feet high, and which are usually active at the turn of the tide. From 
one are ejected fragments of bricks, which must come from the Hindu structures 
of the ancient city of Mojo-Pahit, which formerly stood much farther to the 



-Tenggeb and Semeku. 
Scale 1 : 300,000. 

The Arjuno chain is connected by a ridge scarcely 1,650 feet high with 
another igneous grouj), comprising the Tengger and Semeru volcanoes The 
former has the largest crater in Java, while the latter, to the south of it, is the 
highest peak in the island (12,100 feet). From its crater was discharged in 1885 
a lava stream estimated at over 10,000,000 cubic feet, the first of the kind recorded 

in Java, where till recently 
the volcanoes were supposed 
to eject no molten matter, 
but only solid substances, 
such as ashes and stones. 
Semeru takes its name 
from the Indian Meru, the 
holy mountain at all times 
venerated by the Hindus and 
Tibetans. Tengger (9,000 
feet) is of extremely regular 
form, and from its summit 
are emitted at short intervals 
columns of vapour and scoria;, 
black by day, red at night. 
It was formerly probably as 
high as Semeru ; but of the 
ujtper part all "has disappeared 
except the outer walls, which 
form a vast enclosure about 
15 miles in circuit, here and 
there interrupted by gaps 
and breaches and rising in 
some places 1,650 feet above 
the inner plain. This level 
plain, which was formerly the 
crater, and which has a mean 
altitude of over 6,500 feet, 
bears the name of Dasar, or 
" Sea of Sand," mostly con- 
sisting of the finest dvist, 
^ ,,., movable in dry weather, but 

— ^■^— — ^^^^^— — ^— 6 Miles. •' 

changed by the rains to the 
consistency of clay. From the centre rise a few sandy hills, one of which, the Bromo, 
still constantly ejects smoke, and has at times been the scene of tremendous out- 
bursts. Its crater is alternately flooded by a small lake and filled by a mass of 
molten lava. The term Bromo is merely a corruption of Brahma. The last Javanese 
who professed the Hindu religion took refuge on the slopes of Tengger, and their 
descendants still celebrate feasts in honour of the Devo-Bromo, or "God Brahma." 


- . ' :^, 






A cliain of hills, crossed by a pass 830 feet high, connects Mount Lemongan on 
the east with another igneous system whose numerous peaks are collectively known 
by the name of Ajang. Before 1844 this hilly region, which also comprises a broud 
forest-clad plateau, was completely unknown ; but in that year it was discovered 
by Junghuhn, the indefatigable explorer of Java. Close to the summit of 
Argopura, the highest peak (10,200 feet), he noticed the ruins of a temple of Siva, 
and other structures scattered round about explain the name of this summit, 
which in the Kavi, or old Javanese, language means the "Mountain City." One 

Fig:. 64. — Lemonoan. 
So lie 1 : 150,0W. 





East oF Greenwich 

of the sanctuaries, corroded by the acid vapours, shows that during the last iive 
hundred years the quiescent volcano has been the theatre of at least one disturbance. 

The Gunong Ringgit (4,150 feet), which projects seawards at the north-east 
extremity of the Ajang range, is also at present quiescent ; but towards the close 
of the sixteenth century it was rent asunder ; enormous quantities of ashes were 
hurled in the air, and when the sun reappeared after three days of darkness caused 
bj^ the dense volumes of black clouds, it was found that all the surrounding 
villages had disappeared with their inhabitants. The traces of the eruption are 
still visible, although the mountain has now neither crater, solfataras, nor thermal 

Like the western extremity ol the island, the east coast facing Bali is also 
dominated by volcanoes. A circular plateau, which was formerly perhaps a vast 



crater, is encircled bj' a diadem of lofty peaks, such as the Rami (11,00U feet) on 
the south-west, Kendeng on the north-west, Kukusan on the north-east, Merapi 
and others on the south-east, often collectively known as the Gunong Ijeu, or 
"Isolated Mountain." The waters that collect on this plateau were formerly 
confined in a lacustrine basin, but now escape northwards through a gorge 
between Kendeng and Kukusan. The crater of Rann at the time of Jungbuhn's 
visit had a circuit of about three miles and a depth of no less than 2,400 feet, 
being the deepest of any yet explored in Java. But all these encircling volcanoes 
are now extinct or quiescent except Merapi, whose crater, like that of Kelut, is 
flooded by a freshwater lake, which, during eruptions, is changed to steam and 
precipitated in the same way on the surrounding district. During the outburst of 
1817, houses and inhabitants were swept awaj', and the strait flowing between 
Java and Bali contracted by the formation of new land. The south-eastern' head- 
land of Java, formerly an island, has thus been joined to the mainland by showers 
of scoriae, while the extinct Baluran (4,300 feet), at the north-east extremity, is 
separated only by a sill 50 feet high from the Gunong Ijen system. 

The island of Madura, close to the north coast, has a somewhat irregular 
surface of limestone rocks, the highest of which, Tambuku, at the east end, has an 
elevation of little over 1,500 feet. As in Java itself, Yerbeek's .survey shows that 
in Madura there is no trace of triassic, Jurassic, or chalk formations. 

Although the igneous are far less extensive than the sedimentary rocks in Java, 
this island receives its characteristic aspect from its forty-five conspicuous volcanoes 
with their lateral cones, lavas, and scoriae. As the mariner approaches its shores, 
his gaze is irresistibly attracted by these lofty symmetrical cones, towering above 
the wooded plains, now purpled in the solar rays, now of a jmle blue, standing out 
against the deeper azure of the sky, at times surmounted by a wreath of white 
vapours, at sunset flushed with pink like the snowy Alpine peaks. At different 
epochs, but especially during later tertiary times, all these burning mountains 
have taken part in the transformation of the island ; even during the historic 
p^iod more than twenty of them have contributed greatly to modify the profile 
and contours of the land, transforming what was before a chain of separate 
islands, like the Lesser Sundas, into one continuous insular mass stretching from 
]5ali to Sumatra. This action of the underground agencies appears also to have 
been aided by a process of slow upheaval, which is still going on ; in many places, 
the beach and coral reefs have thus been I'aised twenty, thirty, and even fifty feet 
above the present sea-level. ^ 

RivEKs OF Java. 

Owing to the position of the volcanic ranges, lying for the most part much 
nearer to the Indian Ocean than to the inland seas, the northern are far more 
extensive than the southern fluvial basins, scarcely any of which are navigable. 
The north-western plains about Batavia are watered by numerous streams, the 
largest of which is the Tarum, which rises on the slopes of the southern volcanoes, 


and, after escaping from the Randong plateau through a gorge iu the northern 
range, reaches the sea to the east of Batavia Bay after a course of about 140 miles, 
of which 50 are accessible to small craft. The observations taken on the spot 
show that its delta is encroaching on the sea at a mean rate of rather moi-e than 
22 inches yearly. 

But the main fluvial artery of the northern slope is the Solo (Bengawan, 

Fig. 6-5. — NusA Kembanoax. 
Scale 1 : 650,000. 

East oF Gr 


Sambaya), whose farthe.'^t waters rise in the " Thousand jMountains," within i 
or 8 miles of the Indian Ocean. After the confluence of the two chief branches 
north-east of Mount Lawu, the main stream pierces a rocky gorge, beyond-which it 
becomes navigable for vessels of a considerable draught. It would even be 
accessible to large sea-going ships but for the banks at its mouth covered only 
by 6 or 7 feet of water. In its navigable part, the Solo, which has a total 
length of 300 miles, flows first to the north-east and then to the east through tho 

M 2 


natural depression between the two parallel sections of the island to its delta in 
Surabaya Strait over against the western extremity of Madura. 

At its southern entrance this shallow passage receives another large river, the 
Brantas or Kediri, which, although ranking next in size to the Solo, is scarcely 
navigable except during the floods. The Brantas, which also rises very near the 
Indian Ocean south of the Kawi volcano, is remarkable for the quantity of 
sediment it washes down, and for the disproportionate size of its constantly 
increasing delta. 

On the southern slope of the island the chief streams are the Progo, whose 
farthest waters flow from the Sindoro and Sumbing volcanoes on the west, and 
Merapi and Merbabu on the east ; the Seraju, fed by numerous tributaries from 
the Sumbing, Slamat, and other volcanoes, and navigable in its lower course ; 
lastly, the Tanduwi, whose headstreams descend from the Sawal Mountains, and 
whose broad estuary is accessible to steamers. In its lower course the Tanduwi 
winds through a vast marine inlet, which has been transformed to a rawa, or 
marshy plain, by the alluvial matter washed down with the surrounding torrents. 
Of the original inlet nothing now remains except the shallow Segara Anakan, 
which is already nearly cut off from the high sea by the long rocky island of 
Nusa Kembangan. This island itself, which has greatly contributed to the silting 
up of the inlet by preventing the sedimentary matter from being carried sea- 
wards, is now separated from the mainland only by a narrow muddy backwater ; 
it may already be regarded as forming an integral part of Java, from which it 
was formerly detached by a broad intervening channel. 


The Javanese climate resembles that of the other western Indonesian lands. 
ofi:ering the same alternation of the two trade winds, which here assume the 
character of monsoons. Both are accompanied by a certain quantity of moisture, 
the western being as a rule the more humid and attended by the more stormy 
weather. Being partly sheltei'ed from the west winds by Sumatra, Java receives 
less moisture than the uplands of that island. The atmospheric currents are also 
modified by the disposition of the mountain ranges, running in the direction from 
west to east. The south-east trade frequently veers round to the south, while the 
west monsoon is shifted to the north. The northern and southern seaboards thus 
present a great contrast, due to the direction of these winds, and an analogous 
contrast is offered by the eastern and western extremities of the island owing to 
the gradual increase of dryness as we approach the Australian Continent. 

Other differences arise from local conditions, but most moisture falls everj^- 
where on the westei-n slopes exposed to the "bad" monsoon. Above 2,600 feet 
the alternation of land and sea breezes is no longer observed, and at 5,000 feet the 
west monsoon loses its strength. Still higher up a neutral zone prevails, while 
the highest summits are subject to the south-east trade alone. Several days 
seldom pass without rain on the uplands, and almost every evening has its local 


thunderstorm. The mean annual rainfall, as deduced from the records of a 
hundred meteorological stations for the last eight or nine years, would appear to 
vary from a little over 40 to nearly 200 inches.* 


The Javanese flora, as described by Miguel, comprises altogether over nine 
thousand phanerogams, of which three thousand have native names, a strong 
proof of the remarkable power of observation of the inhabitants. Thanks to its 
numerous volcanoes, following each other like islands in the sea, Java presents an 
endless variety of vertical vegetable zones, ranging from the perennial summer of 
the lower slopes and plains to the wintery, or at least autumnal upland regions. 
As a rule, the strictly tropical zone scarcely' rises above the 2,000 feet line, 
beyond which few palms are met. Nevertheless the areng {liomssus gomutua), 
which yields a fermented drink, sugar, cordage, foliage for thatching, and many 
other useful articles, is everywhere found in the interior as high as 4,600 feet. 
The finest trees flourish between 2,000 and 6,500 feet, their aspect becoming more 
European the higher they ascend. Here such western species as the oak, majjle, 
and chestnut, are found associated with the lakka {myristica inem) and the 
rasamala (liquidambar aUingiana), giant of the west Javanese woodlands. 

In the higher regions the vigour of the vegetation is gradually' diminished, 
the thickets consisting for the most part of shrubs and small plants, such as the 
myrtle, acacia, thorn, elder, woodbine, and especially the woody gnaphalium and 
the agapetes, a species of heath. Several of ' the volcanic crests, even when 
emitting no gaseous exhalations, are completely bare ; yet some ancient travellers 
attributed the noxious emanations to the presence of trees, such as the antyiar, 
to approach which was supposed to be fatal. But this plant {anfiaris to.ricaria) is 
in itself in no way dangerous, although it yields a upas, or poisonous sap. It is 
met in all parts of Java, as well as of other Indonesian regions, where it is used 
for poisoning arrow and spear heads ; it kills by paralysing the action of the heart. 

Next to the cocoanut, the areng and bamboos, one of the most valuable indigenous 
plants is the jati or teak (fecfoiiia granclk), which is not found in many other parts 
of the Eastern Archipelago, and the range of which even in Java has much 
diminished during the historic period. It is comparatively rare in the western 
provinces, and its true home lies between the Japara headland and Madura, in the 
Rembang residency, where it occupies more especially the drier districts on the 
plains and tlie slopes of the hiUs to a height of over 800 feet. But extensive 
teak forests also occur everywhere in the central and eastern provinces, and this 
valuable trefe has been planted along the highways and in unoccupied s])accs. 


Like Sumatra and Borneo, Java also presents some distinct animal species. Of 

• Mean rainfall of Situbondo, East Java, between 1879-8(i, 16 inches : of Buitenzorp, West Jara, 
195 inches. 


about a Iniiulved mammals five or six, and of two hundred and seventy kinds of 
birds, forty are peculiar to this island. But, strange to say, certain animals 
characteristic of the other large Indonesian islands are not met in Java ; here are 
neither the elephant, the tapir, nor the orang-utan, but instead the elegant dwarf- 
deer, a perfect miniature of the common European deer. Of the large mammals, 
the most remarkable are the rhinoceros and wild ox, but the former have become 
very rare and are already restricted to the western provinces. The tiger still 
infests the jungle in various parts of the island, and hundreds of human beings 
yearly fall victims to its ravages. As in India, when their teeth are worn they 
often become man-eaters, and in the province of Bantam whole villages have had 
to be displaced in consequence of their depredations. The crocodiles are also very 
dangerous in certain river.s, although causing fewer deaths than the tigers. The 
tokei, a lizard of gigantic size, is so named from its cry, which a stranger might 
fancy uttered by a human being. 

The insular dependencies of Java present some peculiarities in their faunas. 
Bawean especially almost constitutes a little zoological world apart, and even 
Nusa Kembangan, which is scarcely more than a peninsula of the mainland, has a 
woodlark {jiferopus aicrriinus) not found in Java. 


The natives of Java do not all belong to a common national group. The 
Malays, properly so-called, are represented only by immigrants, and are in the 
ascendant only in a section of the province of Batavia, whither they have been 
attracted by trade and political influ^ences. The rest of the island is occupied by 
the Sundanese, the far more numerous Javanese, and the Madurese, three groups 
distinguished chiefly by their languages. 

Excluding the Malay enclave of Batavia and the north coast, where the 
Javanese language has prevailed, the western part of Java is inhabited by the 
Sundanese as far as a transverse line drawn from Cheribon Bay to the mouth of the 
Tanduwi. The term Sunda given to this region is of very ancient date, and the 
Sundanese, or " Men of the Soil," that is, aborigines, thanks to the hilly nature of 
their territory, have better preserved their primitive usages than the other 
inhabitants of the island. They are as a rule taller, more robust, and healthier ; 
but they are regarded as relatively barbarous, and in the cohipany of Malays or 
Javanese, they are themselves ashamed of their dialect, which is looked on as a 
sort of rude patois. Less developed than the Javanese, it differs little from it in the 
primitive stock of words and structure, but it contains far fewer Sanskrit terms, 
Hindu influences having been relatively weak in the Sundanese highlands. Yet 
the people at onetime accepted Buddhism, and afterwards Islam. They have also 
suffered much from invasions, and the word pi'eaiig, which gives its name to the 
Preanger Regencies, is said to have the meaning of " Land of Extermination." 

In the upper Ujung Valley, near the western extremity of the island, about a 
thousand Sundanese, known by the name of Badui, still i^ractise pagan rites inter- 




miugled with traces oi: Buddhism. These highlanders are distinguished from their 
Mohammedan neighbours by their honesty and more correct morals. Amongst 
them murder, theft, and adultery are unknown, and visitors guilty of any mis- 
demeanoHr are banished from the commune, The heads of the villages take 
the names of " father " and " source of joy." 

The Javanese proper, representing over two-thirds of the population, occupy 
all the central provinces east of Cheribon Bay, as well as the northern seaboard 
between Cheribon and the Sunda Strait, and the whole of the south-east coast. 
Their ancient liturgical language, the Kavi, that is, " cultivated," contains a large 
number of Sanskrit words. It has been preserved from oblivion by old documents 
and inscriptions, and numerous traces survive, especially in Javanese poetr}'. The 
great scenes of Hindu mythology are still commemorated in the national legends, 
poems, theatrical representations, and those wajaiigs, or marionettes, in which the 
natives take such delig-ht. 

Fig. 66. — Inhabitants op Java. 

Scale J : 11,000,000. 

Sundanese. Malays. Javanese. Madurese. Tenggerese. 

Amid the Javanese populations, there still exists a communifj' of about three 
thousand fugitive Sivaites, who have preserved both their Ilindu practices and 
their ancient dialect largely affected by ' elements derived from the sacred 
language. These are the Tengger people, who have taken refuge on the plateau 
of that name. Here they occupy large houses where several families reside imder 
one roof, and where they keep alive the sacred flame, which has never been 
extinguished since it was brought ages ago from the shores' of India. 

Modern Javanese is divided into several provincial dialects, each of which, like 
the Sundanese, comprises two forms, the "high" and the "low" {Kiomo and 
Ngoko), the first used in addressing superiors or equals when treated ceremoniously, 
the second employed amongst friends or in addressing inferiors. The differences 
between the two forms are profound, affecting the Aocabulary, the phraseology, . 


and to some extent even the grammar. Intermediate between the two is the 
Madyo, current amongst intimate friends. 

The dialect of the island of Madura differs sufficiently from Javanese to be 
regarded as a distinct idiom. It is spoken not only in Madura, but also in the 
eastern parts of Java, where it is even encroaching on the Javanese, just as the 
latter is upon the Sundanese. All three are written with characters derived from 
the Indian Devanagari. 

Physically the Javanese are noted for their graceful forms and delicate 
features. They are rather below the average height, but always of sHm and 
supple figure, and even better proportioned than other Malays. The complexion 
varies from a pale yellow to a deep olive, according to occupation, diet, and 
locality. The nose, without being flat, is but slightly prominent, the mouth firm, 
the eyes broad and well opened, the face round, with a kindly courteous expression, 
often sad, plaintive, or resigned. Princes wear a moustache in the Hindu style. 

Altogether the Javanese are an extremely mild race, although by some accused 
of being fanatical, faithless, spitefid, and revengeful. Inhabiting a land well 
suited for tillage, they early became agriculturists, and long raised sufficient to 
supply the local demand. However rapidly the population increased, the produce 
was always superabundant in a region where a few hours' labour sufficed to procure 
three daily meals of rice with fish and a little buffalo meat, and where the climate 
enabled the natives to dispense with clothes, fuel, and even houses. Hence the 
Javanese naturally acquired the peaceful habits of the peasant, and a communal 
life became highly developed in the rice-growing districts where collective labour 
was required. 

On the other hand, a certain timidity of character was fostered by the 
tremendous energy of the natural forces by which they were surrounded — terrific 
thunderstorms, yearly fatal to hundreds and destructive to houses and villages ; 
volcanoes belching forth torrents of scoriae, molten lavas, and dense volumes of 
smoke and ashes turning day into night; igneous outbursts, by which whole 
populations with their dwellings and crops were at times swept away in a few 
hours ; inundations spreading havoc far and wide, and all these horrors increased 
by the wild beasts prowling about the habitations of man. 

But from man himself came still worse perils and plagues. The early history 
of the country following the stone age is wrapped in obscurity, but we know that 
for the last twenty centuries, the inhabitants of the island have always had foreign 
rulers or oppressors. The highland tribes may here and there have maintained 
their independence, protected by their rocky fastnesses, dense forests, rugged 
heights, or even the crater mouths themselves. But the agricultural lowlanders, 
scattered over a region with scarcely any natural bulwarks, were at all times 
exposed to foreign invasion, and had everywhere to bend the neck to the yoke of 
servitude. The very form of the island, a long parallelogram disposed in 
transverse avenues by volcanic ranges, prevented the development of a compact 
nation with a certain political cohesion and capable of presenting a firm front to 
• invading- hosts. 



At the dawn of Indonesian history, Hindu propagandists, arriving proliably 



liuiiiiah, Siani, and Caiuboja, were already at work converting the 


Javanese aborigines to Brahmanism. At the time of the visit of the Buddhist 
pilgrim, Fa-hian, early in the fifth century, the Brahman form of Hinduism 
prevailed throughout the island. Later, it was aliiiost everywhere replaced by 
Buddhist tenets, although the rites still practised round about a few inaccessible 
volcanoes recall the traditions of Siva'ism. Numerous Hindu states, whose names 
are preserved in hi.story or legend, and whose splendour is reflected in the mighty 
ruins of their cities and temples, were successively constituted, especially in the 
central and eastern parts of the island. 

During the period of Indian ascendancy, nearly the whole of Indonesia was 
twice, in the thirteenth and fifteenth century, reduced under the power of a single 
master. But the Arab Mohammedans were already contending with the Hindu 
dynasties for the supremacy in Java. In 1478, they destroyed the capital of Mojo- 
Pahit's empire, which stood near the present city of Surabaya, and during the two 
or three ensuing generations, they successively overthrew the petty Hindu princi- 
palities that had hitherto held their ground. 

But these conquerors were iu their turn soon replaced by others. The 
Portuguese, too weak to reduce the island, did little more than found a few 
factories on the seaboard, and take part as adventurers in the local civil wars. 
But the Dutch, who appeared on the scene in 1596, in a few years felt themselves 
strong enough to assume a dominant position in the coimtry. In 1619 they erected 
the fort of Batavia, centre of the sovereignty which gradually spread over the rest' 
of Java and the Eastern Archipelago. Notwithstanding some local insurrections 
and a war. of succession, which shook their power to its foundations, between the 
years 1825 and 1830, they have, on the whole, found in the Javanese perhaps the 
most svibmissive and resigned nation known to history. Cases are mentioned of 
unhajopy wretches who quietly submitted to take the place of their chiefs con- 
demned by the suzerain authority to imprisonment with hard labour. It is sur- 
I^rising that such a docile people, yielding so readily to bondage, should have never- 
theless preserved their gentleness, sense of justice, probity, and other good qualities. 

The rapid increase of the Javanese population is commonly appealed to in proof 
of their material and moral progress, and consequently of the beneficent results of 
the present administration. Assuredly, if the numerical growth of a people were 
an indication of prosperity, the Javanese would have to be regarded as amongst 
the happiest of nations. AVithin a century, apart from the Chinese and other 
immigrants, their numbers have augmented tenfold by the excess of births over 
deaths alone. In 1780, a series of exterminating wars had reduced them to little 
over two millions ; in 1888, they were at least twenty-three millions, and the annual 
increase now ranges from three hundred thousand or four hundred thousand fo 
half a million. The density of the population is already far greater than that of 
Holland and nearly equals that of Belgium ; and as two-thirds of the soil is still 
unfilled, there appears to be no reason why this density should not be tripled, 
when the whole island is reclaimed. 

Nevertheless there has been an occasional ebb in this steady flow of human 
vitality. In 1880, a famine, followed by a series of epidemics; reduced the popula- 


tiou of the jirovince of Bantam by one hundred and sixty eight thousand ; in 1848 
several districts of Semarang also suffered much from the same cause, while in the 
seven central provinces the population diminished by three hundred and fifty-four 
thousand in four years. But after periods of drought, the families again increase, 
and the gaps are soon filled to overflowing. 

A certain number of Javanese emigrate to Borneo, Sumatra, and other island?, 
but this outflow is greatly exceeded by the immigration, especially from China. 
The Cliinese already number over two hundi-ed and twenty thousand, the majority 
being Pernakans, that is, born in the island of Javanese mothers. But the paternal 
type is little modified by the crossing, and even after several generations the 
descendant of the Chinese may still be recognised under the Javanese national 
garb. The children receive a Chinese education from teachers either introduced 
from China, or who have passed their examinations there. In general, this 
element is much dreaded by the other inhabitants of the island. As brokers, 
contractors, farmers of monopolies, pawnbrokers, smugglers, and opium dealers, 













"^ 1 

; T"' 


i f>/ether/anc/s ' 






I8S0 1830 


IS50 1850 1870 


they appropriate the better part of the profits on all transactions. By loans and 
credit they forestall the very crops and legacies ; on their arrival they are your 
humble servant, but presently your master ; " they expand like the lotus," 
and in 1885 their estates in Java had a collective value of considerably over 
£11,000,000. The Europeans look on them as rivals in the wholesale trade, yet 
are fain to avail themselves of their services in acquiring a knowledge of men and 
things. Even the Dutch Government, while on its guard against their indepen- 
dence of character, their common national sentiment and secret brotherhoods, is 
compelled to employ them in numerous offices needing order and careful attention. 
Hence the decree of 1837, absolutely interdicting Chinese immigration, had soon to 
be revoked, although access to the island was still rendered difficult to the " Children 
of Han " by landing and resident charges, poll-taxes, passports, special imposts on 
the several industries, and other harrassing burdens. They have still to pay a 
special income-tax, and the result of this policy is that they increase at a less 
rapid rate than the Javanese. 


Although less munerous than the Chinese, the Arabs, being Moharainedans of 
the " chosen race," have a I'elatively greater influence, and those especially who 
have made the pilgrimage to Mecca are venerated as saints. Yet they follow the 
same pursuits as the Chinese, and as business agents and dealers live at the expense 
of the native peasantr-y. Till lately the Javanese Arabs were more or less mixed 
descendants of the former masters of the land ; but during the present century 
their numbers have been increased by direct immigrants from Hadramaut. The 
men, being engaged chiefly in the sale of European wares, all speak Malay, but 
in other respects they keep aloof from the natives, and in the family circle care- 
fully preserve their mother tongue. All learn to read and write, and some are 
regarded as well versed in questions of Mussulman theology, jurisprudence, and 

The European population, even comprising the Eurasi;ius, are a mere handful, 
lost, so to say, in this great sea of Oriental elements. But they are the ruling 
class, and consequently command an influence out of all proportion with their 
numbers. Officials who marry native women bring up their children with great 
care, and in the second generation the " nannas " or half-caste women are regarded 
as belonging to the white race. Their educatioij. is often provided for by the 
Government, as is also that of the signos or liplaps, as the half-bred men are here called, 
not without a slight touch of contempt. They receive appointments as notaries, 
clerks, surveyors, and are reputad to be intelligent, but indolent, effeminate, and 
excessively vain. Their families are said not to be very numerous, and appear to 
die out in a few generations, the fact being that they simply become absorbed in 
the surrounding populations. With them have alieady been merged the few 
Portuguese who arrived in the sixteenth century. 

European immigration was formerly discouraged by the Administration, which 
regarded the Dutch East Indies as a domain to be worked for the benefit of the 
(State, and not as a colony opened to private enterprise. According to the decree 
of 1818, which long remained in vigour, no European in any capacity had the 
right to settle in Batavia, or elsewhere in Java, without the special authorisation 
of the governor-general, and even then could not remove more than five or ten 
miles from his residence, according to the locality. But although access to the 
island is now no longer interdicted, few Europeans settle permanently in the 

The excessive mortality, which formerly earned for Java the title of " Cemetery 
of the Whites," is probably ten times less than in the last century. The maladies 
by which they were decimated are now better understood, while they have learnt 
to live more like the natives, and in accordance with sanitary principles. Their 
dwellings are built in salubrious places, and the health resorts are situated at 
various altitudes, so that the climate may be graduated for invalids and convales- 
cents. Nevertheless, the mortality is still high, and at times the colonial forces 
suffer terribly, especially from the so-called beri-ben, apparently a kind of low 
fever or anaemia. The immigrants also tend to lose their moral tone, becoming 
less vigorous and energetic after a protracted residence in the country. 



The first law for all Europeans is to uphold the prestige of their race, and to 
maintain their ascendancy' by a sort of religious terror. Till lately the natives 
would fall prostrate by the roadside at the approach of a white in his carriage ; 
those carrying an umbrella hastened to close it, at the risk of a sunstroke, and in 
the presence of an oiEcial the masses still preserve a solemn silence. For the 
same reason, no European could accept servile work, and when condemned for a 
breach of discipline the military were sent to Holland to undergo their sentence. 
Before 1864, no Javanese was allowed to learn Dutch, or send his children to a 
white school. An exception, however, was alwaj-s made in favour of the Malavs 
proper, whose language has long been the lingua franca of the Eastern Archi- 
pelago, as well as the official idiom for the transaction of public business and the 
administration of. justice. Till lately it was always written in Arabic characters, 
which are now being gradually superseded by the European orthographic system. 

The Dutch government also discourages the Christian missionaries, so that the 
Javanese, nominal Mohammedans, are still pagans at heart, worshipjDcrs of their 
ancestry and of the forces of nature, and attributing to the spirit world all the 
events of their daily existence. But they have also preserved numerous Hindu 
practices, while still celebrating the Mussulman feasts with ever-increasing fervour. 
Amongst them have sprung up some fanatical sects, notably that of the Xaksyi- 
bendi, and since they are now permitted to make the pilgrimage to Mecca, some 
thousands return yearly from the Prophet's shrine dressed as, and calling them- 
selves, Arabs. The Mohammedan schools are "continually more and more fre- 
quented, and most of the peasantry observe at least the evening devotions. 

Some Christian legends have also been introduced into the national mj'thology. 
Like their remote kindred, the Madagascar Hovas and the natives of the Moluccas, 
the Javanese would have embraced Christianity had their rulers commanded them 
to do so ; but the very opposite policy has been pursued, and missionaries, unless 
of Dutch nationality, have often been refused permission to settle in the country. 
Scarcely 11,000 Javanese are classed in thq census papers as members of any 
Christian church. 

In order to avoid all needless contact with the natives, the Dutch ofiicials carry 
on the administration largelj- through the agency of local chiefs. Certain Java- 
nese " Regents," descendants of princely families, have preserved a semblance of 
authority, upholding their rank and dignity by means of rich emoluments and a 
share of the public revenues. But in return they have to accept the advice of 
the Dutch " Residents " stationed at their courts. The action of the real rulers 
is thus masked from the natives, who have themselves no share in the choice of 
their ofiicials. They are, however, allowed to elect the village- chiefs entrusted 
with the distribution of lands, public works, statute labour, and salaries ; but these 
chiefs or communal mayors are liable to be removed at any moment, should they 
fail to satisfy the central authority. 


Economic Coxiiition of Java. 

Tlie slave trade was abolished in the Dutch East Indies at the end of the 
seventeenth century, and slavery properly so-called has ceased to exist in Java 
since 1860, when nearly five thousand slaves were emancipated. But can the 
rest of the people be regarded as freemen so long as tliey are subjected by 
Government to forced labour ? While the authorities were satisfied with collecting 
the taxes on the crops fixed by Sir Stamford Raffles during the British occupation, 
the results were financially bad, and the public deficit went on increasing from 
year to year. But in 1832, the Governor-General Van de Bosch received full 
power to modify existing arrangements, and the very next j'ear the people had to 
adapt themselves to the famous " sj'stem " of culture and taxation, which was 
largely modelled on that of the tobacco monopoly in the Philippines. Neverthe- 
less, the change was effected without causing a crisis, the Government edicts being 
largely conformable to the adat, or old customs observed by the native rulers. 

In virtue of this " system of culture," which was to rei^lace the land-tax by a 
sort of Government monopoly of the croj)s themselves, each agricultural circuit of 
the vast Javanese " farm," was placed under a controller, who reserved a fifth of 
the land for the public service. Here the Administration, or its grantees, in- 
troduced at its option the cultivation of economic plants, exacted throughout the 
commune every fifth working-day (later every seventh), and de facto regulated 
all the works, encouraged and coerced the workers. At the end of the 3-ear, it 
took over from the producers the various exports, coffee, sugar, indigo, tea, 
tobacco, cinnamon, pepper, " at the market price," after deducting two-fifths for 
the taxes, and a fixed sum for transit charges. 

But this " market price " has alwaj's been fixed by the Government far below 
the real value, and, according to official statistics, the Javanese peasantry have 
been defrauded, since the introduction of the " system,'' to the extent of some 
£80,000,000. On coffee alone, the " staple of the Dutch Colonial regime," the 
plunder of the natives to the benefit of the home budget amounted, between 
1831 and 1877, to the enormous total of £68,000,000. The real market price, 
after deducting the impost, has occasionallj' been three times in excess of the 
price officially announced to the natives. 

Hence it is not surprising that b}' the Minister Van de Putte and many other 
Dutch statesmen this wholesale plunder of the Javanese has been denounced as 
a " wretched system." On the other hand, an administration which yielded a 
considerable " colonial bonus " to the mother country, often over £2,000,000 
yearly, could not fail to find many admirers, although the bulk of the native 
population meantime remained poor and half famished. Certain political econo- 
mists have even ventured to hold up the procedure of the Dutch Government in 
Java as a model of political wisdom. 

However, the era of direct agricultural monopolies seems to have run its course. 
The Achinese war, followed by the ravages of insects on the coffee plantations 
and the necessary increase of the public expenditure, have brought about a 



deficit, showing once more that monopolies end in the ruin of states as well 
as of the plundered Of late years, the system has been gradually modified. 

Statute labour has been abolished, at least on paper, except for works of 
l)ublic utility, such as roads, harbours, canals and administrative buildings. 
Lands held bv the communes in virtue of hereditary right have been ceded to 


them absolutely ; the cultivation of tea, tobacco, iudigo, cochineal and cinnamon 
has been left to private enterprise, the Government retaining the monopoly only 
of sugar till the year 1890, and of coffee until the question is settled by legis- 

The system of forced labour, that is, of slavery in disguise, has had the natural 
consequence, of retarding the intellectual and moral progress of the people. The 
structures in different parts of the island dating from the Hindu epoch show 
that the knowledge of industrial, scientific and artistic processes has greatly 
deteriorated since those times. Doubtless the initiative came from the Hindus, 
but the works executed under their control attest the advancement made by their 
disciples. But decadence was inevitable under an Administration which for 
nearly three centuries closed the schoolroom to the natives, lest they should learn 
to think and thus attempt some day to bridge over the gap separating them from 
their masters. Even now, for a population o£ some twenty-three millions, Java 
possesses only two hundred native schools, attended by some forty thousand 

In the Javanese communes the land has remained unallotted, the sovereign 
being still regarded as the supreme proprietor, while the collective usufruct of the 
cultivated parts belongs to the peasantry. The cultivators thus form with the 
communal land an organic whole, the so-called dessa, and they can scarcely under- 
stand any other system of tenure. Efforts have in vain been made in some places 
to introduce that of private holdings amongst the poor cultivators of the plains. 
Doubtless there exist a certain number of plots inherited in the family ; but the 
communal organisation everywhere prevails. Even where the jungle is cleared by 
private enterprise, it lapses after a certain time to the commune, which, according 
to the adat, or " custom," is the true owner and collectively responsible for the 
taxes and the statute labourers. As in the Slav mir, each member of the dessa 
keeps his cottage and garden, while all have equal right to the woods and waste 
lands. But the tracts under tillage are distributed to the families either every 
year, or every two or three years according to the districts. 

Unfortunately the enormous increase of population during the present century 
has had the consequence of reducing to a mere fraction the portion assigned to 
each individual, in some places five acres or even less, while the government 
abstains from helping the communes by the grant of public waste or fallow lands. 
On an average, the Javanese cottage is worth about sixteen shillings, and the 
revenue of each family plot five pounds at the utmost. The peasant finds it 
diSicult to earn an equal sum on the Government plantations, so that the whole 
population sees its substance constantly diminishing, and itself threatened with 
still deeper poverty, although it at least contrives to live despite the imposts and 
forced labour. 

Would they fare better were the principle of private property established in 
the 40,000 communes, and were most of the holdings rapidly reduced to proportions 
too small for any practical purpose, or even bought up altogether, leaving the bulk 
of the peasantry without any property ? Would not the condition of Java then 


become aualogous to that of Ireland, and depopulation become inevitable ? lu the 
province of Bantam under the British administration the greatest impulse was 
given to the development of large estates, and here also the laud, belonging mostly 
to absentee owners, is the worst cultivated, here the indigent classes are most 
numerous, famines most frequent and often attended by bread riots. The famous 
novel of Max Ilairkiar, which deeply moved the public conscience of Holland, 
described in eloquent language the deplorable condition of the Bantam peasantrj', 
and since then there has been no change for the better. 

The staple crop is rice, which in many districts constitutes the exclusive food 
of the people. Hence, despite the enormous annual production, the export of this 
grain is slight compared with that of Burmah and Cochin China. The rice-fields 
exceed a total area of 5,000,000 acres, covering not only the marshy low-lying tracts 
and regularly irrigated slojaing valleys, but also the so-called Tcgah or drj' grounds, 
yielding the most nutritive varieties, as well as the flanks of the mountains to a 
height of over 4,000 feet, below the zone of coffee plantations. After the harvest, the 
ditches and reservoirs are emptied, and a second harvest made of the myriads of fish 
that swarm in these waters during the year. Fevers are endemic in the Saicah, or 
wet rice districts, but are less fatal than in other regions lying even farther from the 
equator. This is due to the fact that the Javanese do not allow the waters to stag- 
nate, but always keep up the current, and also jjlant a curtain of large trees round 
their villages. 

In Madura, where the surface is nearlj^ everywhere gently undulating, scarcely 
any rice is grown ; here the chief alimentary grain is maize. 

Although the Javanese peasantry never drink coffee, those residing in the pre- 
scribed coffee districts have to cultivate a strip of 600 feet, and to sujiplj' fresh plants 
in case of failure. It is from this source that Holland derives, or has hitherto 
derived, her " colonial bonus," and consequently to it the natives are indebted for 
the oppressive system of forced labour. The coffee plant was not introduced till 
towards the close of the seventeenth century ; yet Java produces from a 
sixth to an eighth of the 3-ield of the whole world, or an average of about 150 
million pounds, valued at £2,000,000. Since the end of the Napoleonic wars, 
when this island was restored to Holland, the yield had gone on increasing from 
decade to decade till recently. Now, however, although several private capitalists 
have entered into competition with the Government, it seems to be at a standstill, 
or rather to have entered a period of decline. In 1876, the destructive htmileia 
rastatrix, which had already wasted the plantations of Ceylon, made its appearance 
in Sumatra, and three years later attacked those of Java. Precautions have also 
to be taken against other paVasites, such as the xi/lotricus quadrupes, the combined 
attacks of which have reduced the Government crojj from nearly 80,000 tons in 
1879 to less than 18,000 in 1887. 

The Javanese cofifee-planters have now great hopes of the Liberian variety, 
which resists both the hemileia fungus and the xylotricus borer. But merely 
to replace over 200 million plants' would alone be tantamount to an economic 



Java ranks next to Brazil in the production of coSee, and also holds the second 
place in the markets of the world for that of sugar, in this product being exceeded 
by Cuba alone. The crop, which, however, varies greatly from year to year accord- 
ing to the rainfall and other climatic conditions, averages one-tenth of that pro- 
duced by the rest of the world. There are several local varieties of the cane, whose 
cultivation is one of the old industries of the island. In 1808, the yield rose to 5,800 
tons, but it did not acquire its present gigantic" proportions till the second half of the 
century. The share of the Government in this industry declines each year in virtue 

Fig. 70. — Zones of Wet and Dry Rice Fields and Coffee Plantations on Mount Sumbino. 

Soaie 1 ; 160,000. 

of the law obliging it to gradually abolish statute labour, and to grant concessions to 
private enterprise. Some of the plantaticms, especially in the Jokjokarta and 
Surakarta districts, are supplied with machinery in no respects inferior to that of 
the finest sugar mills in Euroj)e. 

The tea industry, introduced from Japan in 1826, has never acquired a 
development sufficient to enter into serious competition with the Chinese and 
Indian growers. The plantations laid out by Government in all parts of the island 
did not prove very profitable, and since 1865 the industry has been completely 



abandoned to piivate speculators. The yield averages about 6,000,000 pound.s ; 
but the leaf is of iudiffereut quality. 

Other economic j^lants, such as cacao, the clove, and cinnamon, are not extensively 
grown, and even pepper, formerly the chief resource of the province of Bantam, 
has ceased to be a profitable industry. Of the 25,000,000 cocoanut trees, about 
10,000,000 are fruit-bearing. 

Despite great commercial vicissitudes, tobacco has become one of the important 

Fig. 71. — Teak Fokests between Semarano and Suhabaya. 
Scftle 1 : 2,500,000. 

Easb of Greenwicli 

exports, besides supplying a considerable local consumption. This industry has 
also ceased to be a Government monopoly, and is now largely in the hands of Chi- 
nese speculators. But they are not allowed to cultivate opium, and have to pur- 
chase this drug from the Government, which imports it from India, Persia, and 
Asia Minor. Indigo, formerly one of the most jealously preserved mo opolies, is 
now also surrendered to free labour, and still continues to be an important article 
of the export trade despite the competition of the coal-tar dyes. Neither jute, 
cotton, nor any of the other textile plants are extensively cultivated. Amongst 

N 2 


these is the kapok or raudu [eriodendruii anfracluosum), the fruit of which yields a 
down utilised by the native weavers. 

The sarne plant is used for building purposes, but in this resj^eet a vastly more A'alu- 
able tree is the teak — the Jati of the Javanese, which still covers an extent of about 
2,500 square miles. Recently, also, some of the cleared spaces have been replanted 
with the no less valuable cinchona, first introduced from Reunion in 1852, and 
again directly from South America in 1854. Within nine years of that date, there 
were already 1,140,000 cinchona plants either in the nursery-grounds or the 
forests of Java ; but the variety selected was one of the least valuable, and it had 
even to be replaced by others of more medicinal value, notably the calmnja, which 
had been successfully introduced into the uplands of British India. In 1888, the 
Government enclosui-es contained over 3,700,000 of the best varieties, growing at 
different altitudes between 4,000 and G,500 feet. By careful selection and grafting, 
plants have been obtained whose bark 3'ields from 11 to 13 per cent, of quinine. 

Java lacks a suflScient number of domestic animals for agricultural operations. 
In the western province of Bantam, the proportion of horses, oxen, and buffaloes is 
only 94 per thousand of the population, but this proportion increases somewhat 
steadily eastwards until, in the extreme east, it rises to 830 per thousand. But 
everywhere the live stock has diminished during the second half of the present 
century, while the popidation has rapiidly increased. The Javanese horses of 
Arab stock have diminished in size, but not in mettle and staying power. The 
Cheribon trotters and the Kedoc cart-horses are highly spoken of, although none 
can compare with the Sumatran ponies in form or vigour. 

The produce of the fisheries, which employ about fifty thousand hands, is all 
required for the local consumption, except the sea-slugs and sharks' fins exported 
to China. Java also yields the very finest quality of edible birds' nests, also des- 
tined for the Chinese market. 

To the traditional industries, such as weaving, dj'eing, krisses, and other arms 
for which the Javanese have always been famous, the manufacture of heavy 
machinery has recently been added for the sugar refineries, the harbour works 
and railways. An ancient monopoly of the Jokjokarta regency are the gongs 
and musical instruments for the Gamclangs, or native bands, bells, cymbals, drums, 
and bars of copper or bamboo which the players strike with a hammer to accomjjany 
the theatrical representations and native ballets. The most skilled craftsmen are the 
Chinese, who are usually employed, especially by Europeans, wherever taste and 
execution are objects of consideration. 

The carriage roads are well planned and kept in excellent repair, and are 
often supplied with footpaths and supplementary avenues for heavy traffic, 
especially between the chief towns. The main artery is the great military route, 
780 miles long, running from Anjer, in the exti-eme west, to Banjuwangi, in the 
extreme east, and constructed by the terrible Daendels, still remembered by the 
natives as the " Master of the Great Thunder." The torrents and even rivers 
are crossed by ingeniously planned bamboo bridges, which, despite their frail 
appearance, are extremely solid works. The first railway, connecting Batavia 



■with Buitenzorg, was opened in 1872, and since then the network of lines, as 
originally planned and suggested by the configuration of the island, has been slowly 
developed. When completed, the S3'stem must obviously comprise two coast lines 
running from one end to the other, and connected at intervals by transverse lines 
through the valleys separating the volcanic ranges. But this system is far from 
complete, although the three great ports of Batavia, Semarang, and Surabaya are 
already connected with the rich inland districts. More than half of the railways, 
as well as all the telegraph lines, belong to the State. The latter are connected 
with the Indo-European system through Singapore, and with that of Australasia 
through Timor. 

The steam navigation companies, whose craft ply regularly between Europe 
and Batavia, as well as from port to port round the coast of Java and through - 

Fig. 72. — Railways in Java. 
Scale 1 : ll.OOO.OOn. 


■ Steam Tr.imways. 

out Indonesia, alread}' own over sixty steamers, with a collective capacity of 
nearly 100,000 tons. The largest share of the Javanese trade is still carried 
on with Holland, although the law of 1874 abolished all differential dues on 
foreign vessels touching at the insular ports. The entry and clearing charges were 
also, at the same time, greatly reduced on a large number of commodities. All the 
Government exports are shipped for Holland by the privileged Ilandrl- Matttschap2)ij 
(" Dutch Trading Company "), founded in 1824, and in the imagination of the 
people confounded with the State itself. The original Dutch East India Company, 
after realising millions by its long monopoly of the trade with Indonesia, became 
bankrupt at the end of the last century with a debt of £10,000,000. 

Since the declaration of free trade in 1874, the movement of the exchanges 
with Great Britain has acquired considerable importance. England takes especialU' 



raw sugars in exchange for cotton goods and hardware. China,, the United States, 
and France also share to some extent in the general export trade. The Javanese 
sailors are surprisingly daring and agile, swarming up the ship's shrouds almost 
with the nimbleness of the monkey. 


At the beginning of the seventeenth century, the chief outport was Bantam, 
situated near the north-west extremity of the island on a well-sheltered semi- 
circular bay, but obstructed by mudbanks. Here the Dutch founded their first 
factory in 1596 ; but it is now a mere village almost hidden by the surrounding 
foliage. Although Bantam has given its name to the province, the capital of the 

Fig. 73. — Lines of Steam Navigation in Indonesia. 

Scale 1 : 48,000,000. 


cp> 'i' '-y" 


'^ Ku(.»n| 

Lasb oF br-eenwich 

residency has been removed to the small town of Serang, some six or seven miles 
farther south, while the local trade has been diverted to Anjer, which was nearly 
destroyed by the Krakatau eruption of 1883. 

Bataria, the Jakatra of the natives, present capital of Java, and of all the 
Dutch East Indian possessions, occupies an area out of all proportion with its 
population, stretching from the harbour in a straight line for over twelve miles 
inland. The vast space, however, is not continuously built over, but rather 
occupied by several distinct quarters, connected together by canals, routes, and 
avenues. The old town had been founded in 1619 on the coast along the right 
bank of the Liwong, while the citadel with its four sharp bastions stood on an 
artificial islet at the entrance of the estuary. Batavia gradually acquired the 
aspect of a Dutch city with its canals and dykes, its many storied and gabled brick 
houses ; but a shower of ashes ejected from Mount Salak choked the canals, con- 




Fig. 74.— Batavia in 1628. 
Scale 1 : 20,000. 

verting the lower quarters into swamps and causing the land to advance seawards. 

Batavia thus became still more unhealthy than before, and at the same time lost the 

advantage of its marine position. At present it lies considerably over a mile from 

the coast and the canalized 

river has had to be extended 

the same distance to reach deep 


Leaving the old town to 
the Malay custom-house offi- 
cers and the teeming Chinese 
population, the Europeans have 
■ established their new quarter 
some miles farther south on 
more, elevated ground, every- 
where planting broad avenues 
and laying out gardens and 
shriibberies. The central 

quarter of Welterreden, com- 
prising the chief public build- 
ings and large hotels, combines 
the aspects of a fine city and 
magnificent park, where 
flourish most of the tropical 
plants distinguished b}' the 
splendour of their flowers and 
foliage. Round about this dis- 
trict and beyond the extensive 
grassy tract of Koning's Plein 
("The King's Plain") other 
quarters have sprung up on 
the western slopes, and these 
also are everywhere inter- 
spersed with gardens and 
shady groves, the favourite 

eveningpromenade of the Euro- ^.w Yards. 

peans. Northwards, a district 

of suburban residences,- skirting the canal, stretches away to Old Batavia, and is 
continued southwards as far as Mcester Conie/w, another group of scattered quarters 
separated administratively from Batavia proper, but all belonging to the same 
system. The whole is encircled by the palm-groves of the native kampongs. 

Batavia is the seat of the oldest and most flourishing learned societies in the 
Eastern Archipelago. It also possesses a medical school, libraries, a museum, and 
some periodicals of high scientific value. 

The maritime quarter of Tanjong Priok, also forming part of Batavia, is of 



quite recent foundation. Till lately Batavia had no harbour, and large vessels were 
obliged to ride at anchor in the roadstead, which, however, is perfectly sheltered 
by quite an archipelago of small islets. The canal was accessible only to small 
steamers and river craft, while the approaches were being yearly invaded by the 

Fig. 75. — Batavia and Poet of Tanjono Peiok. 
Scale 1 : 60,000. 

32 Feet i 
upwai c 

sedimentary matter brought down by the Liwong and Angkee rivers. Between 1817 
and 1874, the shore-line advanced at the rate of 35 yards a j'ear, so that it became 
necessary to remedy the evil by constructing piers in deep water. 

At first it was proposed to establish the port near the island of Onrust, north- 






Telolvli Betoen^ 





Jlaj'z.ej's JSaai • _ 

or Ba - 1 Sejnan^a 

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J . TitfiOCJU) 

. rwiJlmibii; 

East of Greenvricli 

_oaf' oJ JLajnpojig 


I , Sehoelsoe 


^^:::=^-^i=^- J.Sehesi W/ 




Dedpdi nmc 

J^j'iLSeji £Uajui 

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JsraJIoofd Pajnea^ 



Seaboard snept by the tvata cU\ 
IJie Uffhthjoiux 



Z50 f^^OO. 500 nfn^ardU. 

tJie e/iiption of Erakatau in 188 S. 
re mduMb^dbyred dvts. 





west of the roadstead, whicli already possessed a naval arsenal ; but after much 
discussion, the engineers at last decided in favour of the Tanjong Prick Point, which 
is distant only 6 miles to the north-east of the old town. Here the land, somewhat 
more elevated than the neighbouring coast, projects seawards towards a line of 
upheaved beds, which are continued in the direction of the east. Two immense 
stone jetties, 2,140 and 1,960 yards long respectively, now project from this point, 
curving round at their northern extremity so as to leave for shipping an entrance 
of about 500 feet. The space thus enclosed comprises nearly 500 acres, and affords 
good anchorage for the largest vessels. Repairing basins, graving and dry docks, 
and building yards complete the harbour works, which are connected with the rest 
of the city by a road, a railway, and a canal crossing the intervening marshy 

The two large towns of Tawjcrang and Bikasi to the east, both inhabited by 
Chinese, may be regarded as direct dependencies of Batavia. Bekasi is even 
connected by rail with the capital, of which it forms a suburban retreat ; but not 
a single descendant is now to be found of the Dutch Boers, who settled in the 
district about the middle of the eighteenth century. In Tangerang and neigh- 
bourhood some 40,000 or 50,000 peasants are occupied during the " dead season " 
in plaiting hats, mats and boxes of bamboo fibre, which are bought up by Chinege 
traders for the market of Paris. In 1887, the district of TjUongok alone exported 
about 1,200,000 hats, valued at nearly £f^0,000. 

Farther south the advanced spurs of the Gede volcano are resorted to by most 
of the Europeans, who can here breathe a pure and invigorating atmosphere. In 
1774, Buifenzorg, that is " Sans Souci," was chosen as the site of an official health- 
resort, and this place has by successive enlargements become a vast residence, now 
usually occupied by the Governor-Generals of the Dutch East Indies. Lying 880 
feet above the sea, on a wooded slope between the Liwong and Dani river valleys, 
Buitenzorg commands a superb prospect of the surrounding forest-clad gloomy 
gorges and undulating heights rising in one direction towards Mount Salak, in 
another towards Gede. Xowhere else in Java is the indigenous vegetation more 
exuberant or more varied than here, and no botanic garden in the world is richer or 
better organised than that of Buitenzorg, whose magnificent avenues wind round 
about the government palace. Here are cultivated no less than 9, -'300 different 
species of plants. 

But Buitenzorg is not sufficiently elevated to be regarded as a sanitarium. 
Hence invalids and convalescents usually prefer the station of SuHlang-Lnya, which 
stands at an altitude of 3,560 feet on the northern slope of Gede, near the vast 
nursery grounds of Tjibodas. This is said to be the most salubrious spot in the 
whole of west Java, and hundreds of soldiers stricken down during the Atjeh 
campaigns have here recovered their health. 

South of Buitenzorg the railway, after crossing the main insular watei'-parting, 
and leaving to the south thinly peopled districts sloping down to Wijnkoops Bai/, 
and the port of Plahuan-Ratu, passes eastwards by the important stations of 
Stikabumi Tjanjur, into the vast basin of the Tarum. Here is the port of Tjikao, 


which before the opening of the railway was the only outlet for the produce 
of the whole district. 

Farther east, at an elevation of 2,470 feet, stands Bandong, the picturesque 
capital of the " Preang regencies," almost completely concealed by the surrounding 
forest vegetation, and commanded northwards by the long crest of the Tangkuban 
Prahu ridge. 

At present (1889) the railway terminates beyond Bandong at TJitJalenlia, b\it is 
to be continued across the plateau down to the Manuk Valley, where it will throw 
off a branch south-westwards to the town of Ganif. Then climbing the eastern 
hills it will fall by long inclines down to TJilatJap, the most sheltered port on the 
south coast, and already connected by rail with the northern slope of the island. 
Even at low water there is a depth of 17 or 18 feet on the bar, and from 30 to 35 
in the harbour, which is protected by the island of Kembangan, and defended by 
fortified lines. 

East of Batavia the marshy coast, fringed by mangroves and mud banks, has 
no harbours west of Cheribon Bay. Indramaju, in the Manuk delta, which grows 
the best rice in the island, is a small riverain port accessible onl}' to vessels of light 
draught. The populous find productive province of Cheribon has a large number 
of small towns and large communes, but no cities of great size. Cheribon, the 
capital, which takes its name from the Tji-Ribon torrent on which it is situated, 
occupies only a secondary position amongst the commercial centres of Java. Tegal, 
capital of the province of like name, has a roadstead exposed, like that of Cheribon, 
to the north and east winds, so that vessels run some risk in shipping the produce 
of the interior brought down by the railways, connecting this place with Balapiiknig 
and Pangka. The largest town on the north coast between Batavia and Semarang 
is Pekalongan, which occupies both banks of the river of like name. Pekalongan 
formerly enjoyed a monopoly of the indigo trade, and the native women wove 
highly esteemed coloured fabrics. 

Semarang or Samarang, lying near the centre of the curve formed with the 
rest of the coast by the peninsula of Japara, is one of the three great ■ Javanese 
marts. At the close of the last century it stood first, and still rivals Batavia and 
Surabaya, exporting large quantities especially of sugar, coffee, tobacco, and indigo. 
Yet it has no harbour, and large vessels calling here are obliged to anchor consider- 
ably over a mile from the shore in waters exposed to the fury of the west nionsoon. 
Boats and steam launches alone can penetrate into the city through the Banjir 
canal to the west, and the canalised river to the east, on which have been erected 
the chief public buildings. If a harbour is constructed it will probably have to lie 
further west, near Krowelang Point, for at Semarang deep water of 25 or 30 feet 
occurs only some five miles from the coast. In the marshy plain between the 
canal and the river rises a star-shaped fort strengthened by bastions and a moat, 
and close by is one of the two artesian wells which supply the place with pure 

As in Batavia the inhabitants are grouped according to their nationalities, the 
Europeans, here numbering several thousands, being chiefly centred in the Bojong 






quarter, whicli lies above the low-lying tracts near the spurs of the hills to the 
south. Pleasure resorts are also scattered to the south-west at the foot and on the 
flanks of the Ungaran volcano, whose terraced slopes are crowned by the ruins of 
Hindu temples. 

Semaraug is abundantly supplied with means of communication, roads, railways, 
steam trams, canals, and steamers, one line of navigation connecting it with the 

Fig. 76. — SEMAEANa. 
Scale 1 : 60,009. 

ancient city of Japnra. During the Hindu epoch, Japara, whicn gives its name 
to a province, was a great emporium, and down to the close of the last century it 
was still frequented by shipping. But its port has been gradually closed by the 
coral reefs, and its trade having been transferred elsewhere, Japara is now nothing 
more than a dull administrative centre. In the rich valley stretching southwards 
one of the chief places is Demak, whose mosque is famous in the Mohammedan 
world as being the first erected in Java. 

Farther east follow the large markets of Kudm and Patti, and on a broad 



estuai-y accessible to ships of average size, tlie ancient city of Jawann or Joana. South 
of Semarang the railway gradually rises in the direction of Amhnrawn , which the 
Dutch have selected as their chief strategic station in the interior. Here the vast 
fortress of WiHem I., 1,G80 feet above sea-level, commands several natural routes 

radiating in all directions. 
Fig. 77. — Magelanq and Buru-Budhue. 
Scale 1 : 130,000. 

Towards the south east, on 
the first slopes of Mount 
Merbabu, stands the town of 
Sakdif/a, where in 1811 was 
signed the capitulation sur- 
rendering the Dutch East 
Indies to Great Britain. At 
present Salatiga is one of the 
chief health-resorts of Java. 
Mfif/elinifj, capital of the 
province of Kadii, occupies 
the centi'e of a magnificent 
plain watered by the river 
Progo and fertilized by the 
ashes of the surrounding 
volcanoes. Some nine or ten 
miles to the south of this 
enchanting spot a small 
eminence near the Progo is 
crowned by the pyramidal 
temple of Buru-Budhur, the 
finest Hindu ruin in Java. 
Standing on a square plat- 
form, 540 feet on all sides, 
the edifice rises in seven 
retreating storeys to the 
central dagoha, or dome, a 
solid mass of masonry tower- 
ing above thousands of 
sculptured stones and bas- 
reliefs, representing battles, 
hunts, shipwrecks, domestic 

^^^^»^_^_^^-^^^-^^^— »~ '6 Miles. , • 11 

scenes, triumphal proces- 
sions, in which is figured 
the elephant, an animal unknown in Java. At the angles of the terraces are 
monstrous carved idols, while at intervals are throned effigies of Buddha of 
the traditional solemn and conventional type. Thus are intermingled in these 
sculptures the cults of Siva and Sakya-Muni. This superb monument, which has 
been compared, for vastness of proportions and finish of details, to the Cambojan 

East oF Green V T 



temple of Auklior-Vat, has lost a lai'ge uumber of precious carvings, carried olf 
by native princes and officials to embellish their palaces and gardens. But enough 
still remain to give an idea of the prodigious architectural work executed in the 
eighth or ninth century by Javanese artists, under the guidance of their Hindu 
instructors. The discovery has recently been made that the base of the building 
is surrounded by a revetment, or stone facing, which masks inner walls richly 
carved and covered with inscriptions. Here archaeologists hojie to find valuable 
data on the historj' of the edifice and of the country. 

Lying on the southern slojje of the island, both Magelang and the equally 

Fig. "S. — Mehapi and Joejokaeta. 

Scale 1 : 500,0(10. 

. '''M/a^Vl 

I' ,0/ 

1 oV 

I 7' 

picturesque Piinrorcjo, capital of the j^roviuce of Bagalcn, have their natural outlet 
in the port of TjUatjap. Here the fertile and thicklj'-peopled coastlauds are 
traversed by a railway running parallel with the seaboard. North of this line 
lies Ba))Jumas, capital of the province of like name. 

But the central station of the insular railway sj-stem is the city of Solo, or 
Suralica-ta, the ancient Kartamirn, capital of one of the few remaining- native 
" regencies." In population Surakarta holds the second rank, and would even 
be the first were Batavia and Meester Cornelis regarded as forming two really 
distinct cities. Its numerous quarters, lining the banks of the Pepe, a western 



affluent of the Solo, occuj)y a vast space, in the centre of which stands the kraton, 
or royal palace. This structure, with its inner courts, harem, barracks, kiosks, 
and gardens, forms a town of itself, with a population of ten thousand within its 

Fig. 79. — Patjitan. 
Scale 1 : 100,000. 

::^:-7"'^^i-y«)\v-,-L «ri f~-~v^' *^" -r ■■•t- i ^ vxTF^ 

Easb oPGreenwich 



32 to 80 


80 Feet and 

— 33 Yards. 

enclosure. But close by is the Dutch citadel, whose guns command the Imperial 
court and all its surroundings. 

Jokjukarta, or Jokjo, capital of the sultanate of like name, takes at present 


oiilv the fiftL place amongst the Javanese cities ; but it has preserved its national 
character far better than Surakarta, or any other town subject to European or 
Chinese influences. Jokjokarta, which in tlie la^st century "bxrre <h« famous name 
of Mafaram, lies at the southern foot of Merapi, fifteen miles in a straight line 
from the south coast. Like Surakarta, it groups its various quarters round about 
a central kraton, covering nearly a square mile in extent, and occupied by the 
Sultan and his numerous household. A few ruins of Hindu temples are scattered 
over the surrounding district, and on a hill to the south-east stands the highly- 
veneraled necropolis of the Mataram princes. 

Although lying so near the coast, Jokjokarta has no port, and the projected 
harbour on the nearest creek [Manjietigan) has not yet been constructed. Mean- 
while the least remote port is that of Patjiton, which is formed by an indentation 
of the rock-bound coast, to the east of the " Thousand Hills." But this place com- 
municates with the inland towns only by means of rugged paths traversing a thinly 
peopled territory. The district, however, contains rich deposits of fine matbles. 

The elegant Sivaite temple of Brarabanan, situated to the north-east of Jokjok- 
arta, was the first discovered by the Dutch exjjlorers. It was brought to light in 
1797 by some engineers who found it buried beneath a mass of dense vegetation. 

Miidiuv, capital of the province of like name, lies like Surakarta in the Solo 
basin on the banks of the Madiun, a navigable affluent of that great water-course. 
Nya'ci, standing near the confluence, was formerly a vitally important strategical 
station on the frontier of the regencies, and is still a busy market. Bojonegoro, on 
the Solo, about the head of its delta, is also a considerable trading place, forward- 
ing most of the supplies for the maritime city of Tuhan, one of the most frequented 
ports on this coast. Although merely the chief town of a district, Tuban is u 
hu'ger place than Renibang, capital of the province, which lies farther west on a 
bay bounded b}' the two volcanic headlands of Murio and Lasem. 

Surabuj/a, metropolis of east Java, and for a time capital of the whole of Indon- 
esia, is one of the great marts and the chief naval arsenal in the island. As a sea- 
port it has taken the place of its northern neighbour, Gresik or Grisee, an old Arab 
settlement, whence Islam was propagated throughout the interior, and which 
became the residence of a powerful theocratic dynasty. The city of Surabaya 
proper stands on the left bank of the Brantas, its site having been gradually 
created by the deposits of this stream, which compelled the sea to retire some miles 
to the north. Here the strait of Trechter, separating Java from Madura, has 
preserved sufficient depth and width to give large vessels access to this perfectly 
sheltered and commodious roadstead. Certain quarters of Surabaya, intersected 
by canals in all directions, present the aspect of a Dutch town. But the com- 
mercial parts are encircled by the palm-groves of the native kampongs, while the 
European suburban villas of Sinipaiig are embowered in dense tropical foliage. 
The ancient tombs still standing in a neighbouring suburb recall the arrival of 
the " Legendary People," that is, the Hindus. To them the local tradition refers 
the foundation of the great Mojo-Pahit empire, a Brahman State, which the 
Mohammedans at last overthrew in the second half of the fifteenth century. 



The ruins of the Hiudu capital are still seen strewn over the plains watered by 
the Brautas some 30 miles south-west of Surabaya, aear the towu of Mujo-Kcrto. 
The decline of Javanese civilisation since the arrival of the Europeans is here 


Scale 1 : 160,000. 

Ease or Greenw ch 



illustrated in the perfect specimens of masonry seen in the remains of several brick 

Higher up the Brantas river traverses the magnificent province of Kadiri, one 
of the earthly Edens of Java, but also one of those regions where the wretched 
inhabitants, brutalised by servitude, are moreover physically degraded by the use 
of opium. The upper bend of the stream, sweeping r.ouud the Kelut and Kawi 
mountains, comprises the Making district, in which are situated the richest coffee 
and tobacco plantations in the island. At Siiu/osari, near Making, occur numerous 





remains of Iliiidu structures, while the spurs and terraces ot" these highlands are 
also crowned with the ruins of ancient temples, now, for the most part, enclosed 
within the grounds of the residences belonging to the large landowners. 

The village facing Surabaya on the opposite side of Madura Strait is the 
terminus of the steam ferry plying between Madura and the mainland. Bangkalan, 
the chief trading place in the smaller island, lies farther north on an open bay 
facing the high sea. This seaport is a much larger and richer town than Paitie- 
kasan, the ofBcial capital of Madura, which lies on a plain a few miles from Madura 
Bay. The chief industry along this coast is the preparation of salt for the Indo- 
nesian government. The Madurese cattle belong to an excellent breed highly 
valued throughout the Eastern Archipelago. 

The island of Bawean, lying farther north and depending administratively on 
Surabaya, appears from the local dialect to be inhabited by pcojile of Madurese 
stock. It has a brisk coasting trade, and yearlj^ sends thousands of peasants and 
artisans to find employment in Java. 

South of Madura Bay, Pasuruan is the first large Javanese town traversed by 
the railway beyond the old Mojo-Pahit gulf, which is now choked with alluvia. 
In this ancient Hindu settlement the customs of Indian origin are better preserved 
than in any other part of the island. The natives of the surrounding district still 
bring their offerings of foliage and flowers to the sources of the running waters, 
and worship the remains of sculptures in the ancient temples of Siva. Tosari, th(? 
chief health resort in east Java, stands 5,850 feet above sea-level on a sj^ur of 
Mount Tenggcr, whence a superb view is commanded of the surrounding waters, 
plains and highlands. 

East of Pasuruan, along Madura Bay, follow two other provincial capitals, 
Proholingo {Banger) and Bcnuki, both of whose roadsteads are very unsafe during 
the prevalence of the gliendeng, or stormy south wind, in the months of January and 
Februarj-. Still farther east, on the shore of a small inlet, lies Panarukan, which 
was formerly a great city and a chief centre of trade in the Eastern Archipelago. 
Here the Portuguese, under Affonso d'Albuquercj[ue, established their first factory in 
Java. Beyond Panarukan the main highway, sweeping round Mount Ruan, 
reaches the town of Baujuwcunji, or " Perfumed "Waters," which stands on the 
strait sej)arating Java from Bali. As a commercial mart this place has replaced 
Bhiiibangaii, which lies farther south on an estuary now choked with sands. 
Banjuwangi is the western terminus of the submarine cable connecting Indonesia 
with Port Darwin on the Australian mainland. The surrounding district, cut 
off from the rest of the island by trackless mountains, is the least densely 
peopled part of Java. 


The central authority enjoys almost absolute power in Java and the othci" 
islands, or " outer " possessions of Holland in Indonesia. The governor-general, 
representing the crown, is himself a sovereign, who has at his free disposal the 

VOL. XIV. o 



land and soa forces, who applies the laws passed by the Netherlands Parliament, 
and who even enjoys the privilege of issuing decrees in general conformity with 
the administrative provisions of 1854. His civil list, although recently diminished, 
still exceeds £13,000, besides travelling expenses. In his legislative work he is 
aided by a council of five members, who are proposed by him and nominated by 
the king, but who take no part in the executive. 

Public opinion both in Java and Holland has hitherto in vain demanded for 
Indonesia the approjjriation of its own budget, as well as some share in the 
administration. The natives retain nothing beyond a few tolerated rights in 
the management of the dcssa, or communal groups. A lai'ge section of the inha- 

Fio'. 81. — Adminisieative Divisions of Java. 

I. Bantam. 

II. Batavia. 
m. Pre.anger Regent- 

IV. Ktawang. 

V. Cheribon. 

VT. Tegal. 
VII. Eanjumas. 
VIII. Pekalongan. 
nX. Bagelen. 

XII. J.Ajokarb.. 

XIII. Surakarta. 

XIV. Japava. 
IXV. Eemtang. 

XVI. Mediun. 
XVII. Kediii, 

XVm. Sm'abaya. 
XIX. Pasunian. 
XX. Probolinggo. 
XXI. Bsukianapan- 

XXII. Madura. 

bitants still consists of the so-called maimmpanf/, that is, " houseless and home- 
less," with whom might till lately be comj)ared the class of the hcimathloscn in 

Surprise is often expressed that so many millions should obey the orders of a 
person who has at his disposal so few material forces. The army scarcely exceeds 
thirty thousand men, of whom only one half are Europeans, and even these 
include Belgian, German and other mercenaries or adventurers. ^Vhites and 
natives of diverse races, half-castes, Negroes, Arabs and Hindus, serve together in 
the same battalions, but grouped according to colour in distinct companies, and 
commanded by a relatively small number of European officers. In accordance 
with Eastern usage the troops may reside in the barracks with their permanent or 
temporary families, which at times even accompany them on short military 
expeditions. It is an exclusively colonial service, and even for the Atjeh war 
no Dutch troops have ever been despatched to the East Indies. But the better 
part of the fleet belongs to the untlonal navj'. 

The European element is directly administered by the governor- general, while 


for the natives the fiction is still maintained of a certain local rule by the 
descendants of their ancient princes. The various provinces are divided into 
regencies, whose " regents " or titular chiefs are members of the former dj-nasties. 
Although nominated by the crown, these adhipatti and tumengyung, that is, regents of 
the first and second class, have always the prestige commanded by wealth, for they 
enjoy stipends ranging from £800 to over £7,000, besides a share in the j)roducc 
of the land. But at their side are the Dutch residents and assistants — prefects 
and sub-prefects — who, although keeping more in the background, represent the 
real authority. Even in the secondary divisions the rcdono, or native officials, 
are held in check by European controllers, these Dutch functionaries numbering 
altogether about three hundred. They are even graduallj^ replacing the Javanese 
officials, who will doubtless sooner or later disappear altogether. 

In the two Vorsfcnlanden (" principalities ") of Surakarta and Jokjokarta, the 
old regime is still kept up with its primitive oiitward fonualities. Surakarta 
ofiicially obej^s a Susukunan ("emperor"), while Jokjokarta is ruled by a 
sultan ; but both alike are controlled by a Dutch resident, without whose sanction 
they cannot even leave their palaces for a stroll in the neighbourhood. The 
monopolies formerly enjoyed by them have for the most part been bought up by 
the Dutch Government. 

A supreme court of justice for the whole of the Dutch possessions has its seat 
in Batavia. Java itself is divided into three legal circuits, corresponding to the 
natural divisions of the land, and under these courts, located in Batavia, Semarang 
and Surabaya, secondary tribunals are established in the provinces, regencies and 
districts. Each resident, assistant, and controller is at the same time a magistrate 
who pronounces sentences in conformity with precedent and after formal consulta- 
tion with the Mohammedan assessors learned in the Moslem law and the local 
usages. The communal mayors also enjoy a certain discretional power for 
repressing crime and awarding penalties, and the same jn-ivilege, though to a less 
extent, is possessed by the heads of the Chinese communities, the maj-ors, cajitains, 
and lieutenants, as they are called, being charged with the maintenance of order 
amongst their fellow countrymen. 

Capital punishment, though not j-et removed from the colonial penal code, is 
rarely enforced. The native convicts are for the most part emjjloyed on public 
works, in the arsenals and dockyards, on the road and canals. Except in the large 
towns, there are no local police, the communes being directly responsible for the 
preservation of peace in their several jurisdictions. 

The " colonial " revenue, two-thirds of which is apj)lied to local purposes, is 
partly derived from the sale of the coffee raised by forced labour, the other chief 
sources of income being the sale of land and the opium and salt monopolies. 
About a third of the budget is applied to defensive purposes, and another third to 
the administration properly so called. The actual revenue is much larger than 
would appear from the official returns. Including the statute labour and estimat- 
ing this burden at the lowest rate, it amounts, according to Brooshooft, to not less 
than £10,000,000. 


Java and ^ladura constitute twenty-two ailministrative provinces, whicli with 
their capitals, areas and popuLitions will he found tahulated in the Appendix. 


Bali, or "Little Java," as it is often called, is in fact geologically a fragment 
of the great island from which it is separated bj^ a channel little over two miles 
wide, and in one place only 53 feet deep. Yet this narrow strait has sufficed 
to impart a certain local character to the flora and fauna, as well as to the native 
j)opulation. From the historic point of view Bali is, so to say, a fossil Java ; while 
the latter has become Mohammedan, the former has remained Hindu in religion, 
customs, institutions, and, to a certain extent, even in sjieech. Hence the his- 
torical and linguistic relations of Bali, owing to their unusual interest, have been 
carefully studied, somewhat to the neglect of its present material and social con- 
dition. No systematic census has yet been taken ; but according to official docu- 
ments this island, like Java, is one of the most densely peopled lands in the 
world, about 1,340,000 human beings being here crowded together in a space not 
exceeding 4,300 square miles. 

Bali presents the general outlines of an elongated triangle, with apex pointing 
towards Java and base turned towards Lombok. Hills of eruptive formation run 
west and east, disposed in ridges or isolated masses without any apparent regu- 
larity. Bakungan, the first of the volcanic peaks, rises to a height of 4,800 feet 
over against the Javanese town of Banjuwangi. The much more elevated Batu 
Kau (9,700 feet), occupies very nearly the geometrical centre of the island. Its 
central cone is enriched by a number of lakelets, and north-east of this point 
stands the still active Batur (6,420 feet), whose twin craters emit columns of 
vapour accompanied by a rumbling noise. Streams of molten lava flowing down 
its eastern flank have reached and nearly evaporated a lovely blue lake at its foot. 
According to the local legend Batur is the abode of a god, whose wife dwells in 
the waters of the lake. 

South-eastwards follow other volcanoes apparently extinct, such as the Gunong 
Abang (7,650 feet), and the Gunong Agung, that is, the "Great Mountain," 
called also the Bali Peak, whose bare yellowish cone rises 10,520 feet above the 
sea. At the eastern extremity of the island stands the Seraya volcino (4,125 
feet), now a vast ruin, whose crater and upper parts were blown away during a 
prehistoric eruption. Soiith of these igneous masses the plains are strewn with 
volcanic scorias, beyond which occur a few hills of tertiary formation, such as 
Badung connected by an isthmus with the mainland, and the insular Nusa Penida 
or Pandita, that is, " Isle of Priests." 

Despite an abundant rainfall Bali is too small to develop any important run- 
ning waters, and most of the rivulets even run drj' during the south-east monsoon. 
The surface water is almost entirely absorbed in irrigating the rice-fields, which 
are carefully cultivated by the native peasantry, and which cover nearly all the 
productive land. The primeval forests have entirely disappeared, and with them 



all rapacious beasts, excejjt a few tigers which still j^rowl about the briishwood on 
the mountain slopes. 

The Balinese, akin to the Javanese, are somewhat taller and more robust ; 
being also less inured to serfdom and freer from the direct control of their Dutch 
masters, they have a more resolute attitude and prouder glance. On the uplands 
goitre is very common, in some districts more than half of the population being 
afflicted by this affection, which, however, according to Jacobs, is here never 
accompanied by cretinism, as in the Alps and Pyrenees. 

Two quite distinct dialects are current, the " low " or primitive Balinese, 
differing greatly from Javanese and showing more affinity with the idioms of the 

Fig. 82.— Bali. 
Scale 1 : 1,6U0,000. 

t asl or urqen w ch 

500 Fathoms aud 

eastern islands, and the " high " Balinese, which differs from the " high " 
Javanese mainly in the large number of words it has borrowed from the Kavi, or 
sacred language, still spoken by the priests and men of letters. As in Java, the 
servile classes are obliged to use the high language in addressing their superiors, 
who reply in the low language. 

Hindu culture appears to have penetrated far more deeply amongst the 
Balinese than amongst the Javanese. The persistence of the Hindu religion in 
the smaller island may bo due partly to the immigration of refugees from the 
Mojo-Pahit empire in the fifteenth century, and partly to the arrival of settlers 
direct from the Coromandel coast. Officially, the whole population is still divided, 


ns in India, Into the foui- castes of the Bralimans, Ksliatryas, Yaisyas, and Sudras. 
But these primordial groups arc again subdivided into numerous sub-castes, while 
the ancient Balinese nobility constitutes a special class between the Vaisyas and 
Sudras. All these distinctions are maintained by inveterate custom with pitiless 
ferocity. The daughter of a Brahman marrying a man of lower position is thrown 
to the flames, and her lover sewed up in a sack and drowned. Even in the 
provinces under direct Dutch control, public opinion compels the magistrates to 
banish any J'oung persons violating the laws of caste. Brahmans have often been 
known to slay their own daughters guilty of this offence. Nevertheless, inter- 
crossings are frequent, both Brahmans and nobles having the right to take from 
the lower ranks as many wives as they like, the offspring of such unions inheriting 
the paternal caste. 

The Balinese are still worshij^pers of the Hindu trinity, and everywhere is to 
be seen the tricolour flag, rod, white, and blue, symbolising the Creator, Preserver, 
and Destroyer. But the efBgies of Brahma and Vishnu have for the most part 
been replaced by those of Durga and Ganesa, Buddhist influences also- persist 
under the outward forms of Brahmanism, and Siva, by far the most popular deity, 
is invoked as a beneficent god. In other respects the Balinese have little religious 
zeal, and display no intolerance towards those of other religions. Some thousand.? 
of the lower caste have even become Mohammedans, in order thus to improve 
their social position. But since the murder of a missionary in 1881, all further 
attempts to propagate Christianity have been discoutiuucd. The thousands of 
Hindu temples scattered over the island are obviously too numerous for the 
faithful, for many are in ruins and no one thinks of repairing them. The 
religious ceremonies observed with the greatest fervour are those connected with 
husbandr}^ These agricultural islanders delight in processions round their 
fields, in worshipping at the little bamboo shrines of the goddess of the crops, and 
crowning themselves with chaplets of flowers after abundant harvests. 

The religious jurisprudence is excessively harsh, and severe public penances 
are frequently imposed in order to avert any fancied forebodings Of evil. Till 
recently certain ill omens required the shedding of human blood, at times 
accompanied even with the most atrocious tortures. One of the hideous devices 
of the priests was to stretch their victims on the sharp points of young bamboos 
and leave them to linger for days until released by death from their unspeak- 
able agony. The wives of Brahmans and of princes were morally bound to perish 
in the flames kindled to consume the bodies of their husbands, and twenty 
years after the last case of suttee in India, Bali still had its holocausts of 

The Balinese live almost exclusively on rice, other cereals, and fruits, pork 
being the only flesh permitted by the priests, who, however, never touch it them- 
selves. The extensive cocoanut groves yield large quantities of oil, and domestic 
industries as well as agriculture are even more developed than in Java. The 
jewellers, metal-chasers, and armourers are very skilful, while the women weave 
and dye beautiful cotton and silk textiles. 


BALI. 199 

Public instruction stands at a high level, and, although there are no schools, 

most of the men and women of the upper castes can read and wrifo Ealineso and 


even Kavi. Thousands of books circulate amongst tlicm on history, theology, 
jurisprudence, ethics, poetry, and the drama. According to Van der Tuuk, who 
formed a rict library of tbis extensive literature, the Balinese poem of Tantrija is 
at least partly the original source of the Arabian Nightn. The people often gather 
of an evening to assist at theatrical performances, the subjects of which arc 
mostly Hindu and local mythologies. The actors, all of the Brahmanic caste, use 
the sacred language, as was formerly the case In Java, and in these " mysteries " 
the ancestors of the Balinese are figured as raJis/iasas, or giants. 

But the native civilisation has, for the last two centuries, entered on a period 
of decline. The early travellers speak of floui'isbing seaports, and well-kept 
highways connecting the large towns ; now trade has fallen oil, and the country 
is mainly traversed by rough tracks. This decadence must be attributed to tbe use 
of opium, now prevalent amongst all classes, to the constant civil wars, to the 
slave-hunting expeditions which have wasted the coastlands, and lastly to the 
degradation of woman, now reduced to a mere object of barter. 

Tiie two western provinces of Jembrana and Buleleng, lying nearest to Java, 
are subject to the direct administration of tbe Dutch. The town of Bulelcng, 
near the coast, is the chief residence of the officials, and ranks as the capital 
although destitute of any harbour. 

The seven remaining provinces have been left under the control of protected 
princes, who still enjoy certain sovereign rights, but whose military power was 
broken during the sanguinary wars of 1840 and 1849. Although deprived of all 
real power, they maintain the outward show of mighty potentates. They are 
approached with much prostration, and at their death all their subjects have to 
shave their heads in sign of mourning. They inherit some of the effects, of the 
women, and slaves of those dying without direct heirs, and of all criminals 
sentenced to banishment. But in these matters the princes themselves are the 
judges, and whenever it suits them, they have merely to mount their stately tri- 
bunal, and award to themselves any coveted estates. 

The principality of Barujli, which lies to the east of Buleleng, is the " Holy 
Land " of Bali, for here is situated the Batur volcano. But the province of 
KalinHj-Kmifj, on the south-east coast, ranks first in national importance. The 
chief, although now one of the least powerful in the island, is, nevertheless, the 
" Great Man," to whom all the other princes pay homage. 

Gijanyar, lying west of Kalung-Kung, is the most densely peopled territory in 
Bali ; its great fertility, generally flourishing condition, and relatively mild 
administration attract a constant stream of immigrants to this favoured princi- 
jDalify. The conterminous state of Baduug, on the south coast, was formerly the 
chief centre of trade, but is now almost destitute of inhabitants, the slave trade 
having converted it into a wilderness. The western principalities of Tahanan and 
Mcngui are both said to be thickly inhabited. The eastern jDrovince of Karang- 
Assem is included within the jurisdiction of the Rajah of Lombok. Since 1882, 
both Bali and Lombok belong to the same administrative division of the Dutch 



A table of all the provinces with their respective areas and populations will be 
found in the Appendix, 


This island, so called by the Europeans from a village on the north-east coast, 

Fi^-. Si. — LOITBOK SllbVIT. 

Scule 1 : 8i>i,f»H-i. 

600 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

is known to the natives by the name of Selaparang or Selaparan, and to the Malays 
as the Tanah Sasak, or Land of the Sasak people. It presents about the same 
superficial extent as Bali, but is less known owing to the more rugged character of 
the land, and the lower state of culture of its inhabitants. Since the middle of the 
eighteenth century it has been a political dependency of Bali, although the 
Balinese themselves form but a fraction of the popidation. 

202 AUSTEAI.AglA. 

The Strait of Lombok separating the two islands, altlioiigh little more ttan 
twenty miles broad at its narrowest point, has a deptb of no less than fire Inmdred 
fathoms. This apparently unimportant ehannel may thus be said to form the 
natural limit of the shallow Java Sea, which has an average depth of considerably 
less than one hundred fathoms. The current in the Strait sets with a mean 
velocitj^ of four miles an hour in the direction from south to north, and 
Wallace has shown that for the distribution of animal and vegetable species this 
passage forms in many respects the chief parting-line between the Indian and 
Australian domains. The Areng palm (areiiga sacrharifera) is not found in 
Lombok, which also lacks the teak, orchids, heaths, and mosses peculiar to the 
Javanese flora. 

In the animal kingdom the differences are still greater, Lombok possessing 
neither the tiger nor any other members of the feline family. Most of the 
Javanese and Balinese birds are also unknown in the neighbouring island, which 
on the other hand possesses several Australian species, amongst others the remark- 
able tncf/cqwdius gouldii, a species of turkey, which buries its eggs under a heap of 
earth and foliage 6 or 7 feet high and 40 in circumference. Here also are 
found the Australian cockatoos, which, however, reach as far west as the islet 
of Paudita (Penida), separated only by shallow water from Bali. But the 
transition of species may be followed from island to island, and according to 
Martin, the true parting- line between the Asiatic and Australian forms should be 
placed rather to the north-west of Timor. 

Like Java and Bali, Lombok is intersected by two parallel ridges, sedimentary 
in the south and volcanic in the north. The former, which scarcely exceeds 1,000 
feet in height, is continued both east and west beyond the coast-line, and is inter- 
sected at certain points by a few prominent masses of scorice. It is also connected 
with the northern volcanoes by some still older eruptive tufas, which form in the 
centre of the island a water-parting for the streams flowing in one direction 
towards Lombok Strait, in another to that of Alias. 

The volcanic chain begins over against Bali with Mount TVangsit (4,000 feet), 
which is followed eastwards by several other extinct cones. The system merges 
towards the middle of the range in the massive Renjani group, from the centre of 
which rises the peak of . Api, or " Fire," whence are still emitted wreaths of 
sul^Aurous vapour. The highest summit of this group, usually known as the 
Lombok peak, is one of the loftiest, if not the culminating point of Indonesia ; 
but this majestic cone has not yet been ascended, and its altitude is variously 
estimated at from 11,000 to 13,800 feet. 

The Sasaks, who form the great bulk of the population, differ physically but 
little from the Balinese and speak a language of the same stock, but approaching 
nearer to the Sumbawa dialect, although written with the Balinese alphabet. The 
natives are all Mohammedans, but disj^laj' little religious fervour, as is shown by 
the general absence of mosques. Politically they are subject to the Balinese 
intruders, who are represented by a colony of about twenty thousand scattered 
over the western parts of the island. 


Mataram, the capital of the kingdom, lies on a plain about four miles from the 
east coast. The neighbouring port of Amjmnan is a flourishing place composed of 
four Kampongs, which are inhabited by as many distinct nations : Malays, 
Baliuese, Bugis of Celebes, and Sasaks. Mataram, where the Balinese alone 
enjoy the privilege of riding on horseback, is a well-kept place with broad streets 
lined by shady banyans. A little to the south lies the Sasak village of Karang- 
Assem, which was the capital of Lombok before the Balinese conquest ; but since 
the year 1849 it has been subject to the foreign lajah. 

The rolling plains stretching east of Mataram towards the Sasan hills are 
described by "^Vallace as perhaps the most highly cultivated in the whole of 
Indonesia. For a space of some hundred square miles all the streams are dis- 
tributed with admirable art in a network of irrigating canals, which encircle the 
flanks of the hills, and rise from terrace to terrace like the seats of an amphi- 
theatre. " Each terraced plot consists in some places of many acres, in others of 
a few square yards. ^Ve saw them in every state of cultivation : some in stubble, 
some being ploughed, some with rice-crops in various stages of growth. Here 
were luxuriant patches of tobacco ; there cucumbers, sweet potatoes, yams, beans, 
or Indian corn varied with the scene." * 

The chief crops are rice and coffee, which arc shipped at Ampanau. The 
Sasaks also export a small but fiery breed of horses and a peculiar sjDecies of duck, 
which walk nearly erect like penguins, and which are locally known as "Baliuese 

In Lombok the penal code is very severe, theft and adultery being capital ' 
offences. In certain cases torture is even inflicted before death, and gamblers and 
opium smokers are punished with the bastinado. The rajah, who is represented in 
the Balinese province of Karang-Assem by a viceroy, maintains a force of about 
20,000 men, well drilled and supplied with the best fire-arras. 


Simibawa, the correct form of which is Sambava, is larger than Bali and 
Lombok taken together. It really consists of several distinct lands, which a 
slight subsidence would decompose into a small archipelago, and which a corres- 
ponding upheaval would connect with the neighbouring islets, such as Moyo in 
the north, Sido and Tengani in the south-east. Towards the centre Sumbawa 
contracts to a narrow isthmus scarcely twelve miles across, and here a broad inlet 
penetrates from the Sunda Sea far inland, ramifying here and there into lateral 
creeks completely sheltered from all winds. Farther east the coast is again in- 
dented by similar fjords, such as Tjempi Bay on the south and Bima on the north 
. side. 

The surface is for the most part mountainous, developing distinct masses of 
eruptive origin, and comprising altogether as many as twenty- two active or extinct 

Tht Malay Archipelago, fiftt edition, p. 161, 


craters. In tlie south, however, occur some sedimentary formations, which form 
an eastern continuation of the Javanese, Balinese and Lombok limestone system. 
The south-western extremity of the island also consists of a non-volcanic promon- 
tory terminating in a regular plateau, which, like so many similar formations 
elsewhere, takes the name of Tafelberg or Table Mountain. 

The Ngenges (5,370 feet) and Lanteh (5,260 feet) volcanoes in the west are 
succeeded farther east by the far more imposing Timboro (Tomboro, Tambora), 
which projects on the north side beyond the normal coast-Hue, its broad slopes 

Fig. 8.5. — Central Part of Sujibawa. 

Sc.ile 1 : 1,500,000. 



S2 to 320 

320 Feet and 
— 30 Miles. 

here completely filliug an extensive peninsula. At present its loftiest peak rises 
to a height of 9,900 feet ; but it is said to have had an elevation of over 13,000 
before the year 1815, when it still formed the culminating point of the Eastern 
Archipelago. But on the evening of April 5 th in that year, a tremendous explo- 
sion took place, which was heard as far as Celebes, Borneo, and Sumatra, and 
which was accomiDanied by a prodigious shower of ashes burying all the sur- 
rounding lands and waters in darkness for ten consecutive days. In the neigh- 
bouring seas the floating masses of pumice exceeded a yard in thickness, and 


these debris represented at least 100, aud accurdiug to some autliorities over 500, 
cubic miles of matter ejected or blown from the mountain on this occasion. The 
12,000 inhabitants of the surrounding district were all buried imdcr the rain of 
scoria; ; but probably as many as one hundred thousand perished during the 
famine and epidemics caused by the destruction of the forests, the loss of cattle, 
the ruin of the irrigation works and the general havoc spread over the adjoining 
islands by this terrific outburst. Over 40,000 Sasaks died of hunger in Lombok, 
and the population of Sumbawa, which in 1815 was about 170,000, was still only 
75,500 in 1847. Even at present the Timboro peninsula remains almost a com- 
plete desert. 

Throughout a great part of Indonesia the " night of ashes " was long con- 
sidered the chief event in history, and served as the starting point of a new 
chronological era. 

The eastern part of Sumbawa is often agitated by violent earthquakes, and 
here also are numerous volcanoes, such as Dindi (5,160 feet), Soro Mandi (4,570 feet) 
and Aru Hassa (5,550 feet) near the north coast, and towards the south-cast angle 
Sambon (4,130 feet), and Lambu (4,G50 feet). Lastlj- the islet of Sangeau, called 
also Gunong Api (6,900 feet), is still in a constant state of agitation, einittiug at 
short intervals jets of vapour and ashes. 

■ The Malayan inhabitants of Sumbawa have been much influenced by the cultured 
peoples of Celebes, with w'hom they carry on a large part of their trade, and by 
whom they have long been governed. The Bugi language of South Celebes is current, 
with other Malay dialects, in some districts of the north coast, while that of Macassar 
is the only literary standard in the island. Nearly all the natives profess Islam, 
but some groups of Orang Dongo, or "Highlanders," occupying the forests south 
of Moimt Aru Hassa, are still pagans, though preserving a few practices dating 
from the early visits of the Hindu missionaries to their moimtaius. They call the 
spirits by the Sanskrit name, dcra, and offer them fruits and flowers. At night 
torches alone are used, the light of lamps being regaixlcd as ill omened. The 
property of the departed is shared equally amongst all the kindred, a share 
being also reserved for the deceased. The cattle are sacrificed on their graves, and 
the other articles burnt or buried for their use in the other world. These high- 
landers keep aloof from all direct contact with Europeans, and their barter with 
the outer world is confined to certain clearings in the forests on the verge of their 

Sumhawa, capital of the western state which bears the same name, lies on a bay 
on the north coast exposed to the north-west winds. At the time of the Timboro 
explosion, only twenty-six of the inhabitants escaped alive, but at present it has a 
mixed population of natives and Celebes immigrants numbering altogether about 
six thousand. This place exports cotton, sandalwood, sajjanwood (cvsaJpinia, or 
" red wood '"), and an excellent breed of ponies. 

Bima, on the east side of the bay of like name, is almost the onl v market in the 
section of the island lying cast of Timboro. It is the capital of a native state 
which also comprises the old breached crater of Grili Banta, east of Sapi strait, the 


Koniodo group, a few other islets, and the Mangkarai district in the west part of 
Flores. Formerly the large island of Sumba also formed part of this state. The 
port of Bima is one of the best in Indonesia. The inlet, which here penetrates over 
fifteen miles inland, is no less than sixty-five fathoms deep at its entrance, and 
opposite the capital, where it expands to a land-locked lake, it affords large vessels 
perfect shelter in depths of from twelve to eighteen fathoms. The European 
merchants and the Dutch officials who keep the sultan under control, reside in a 
separate quarter known as the Kumpoiig Wolanda, or "Dutch Village." In the 
neighbourhood are some Hindu tombs, dating probably from the epoch when this 
part of Sumbawa was tributary to the Javanese Empire of Mojo-Pahit. Here 
also have been discovered some undecipherable inscriptions, whose origin is un- 

Flores, Solor and Allor Archipelagoes. 

These members of the "Little Sundas " constitute so many links in the long 
chain of volcanic islands which stretches eastwards to Timor, and then curves 
gently round north-eastwards to Nila. Flores and its eastern neighbours are 
entirely of igneous origin, lacking even the sedimentary limestones that are con- 
tinued from Java through Bali and Lombok as far as Sumbawa. The southern 
headlands of Flores are all volcanic mountains with extinct or still active craters. 

Although abovtnding in natural products of all sorts, these lands have hitherto 
been somewhat neglected by their European masters. The vast Indonesian Empire 
is too extensive to have yet been sj-stematically survej-ed and opened up through- 
out its whole extent. Till 1809 the Dutch and Portuguese were still contending 
for the eastern part of Flores and the adjacent -archipelagoes, and although all 
were then assigned by treaty to Ilolland, their exploration has since remained 
nearly at a standstill. No accurate returns have yet been made of the population, 
which is roughly estimated at about four himdred thousand for Flores and the 
Solor and Allor groups, which have a collective area of 9,000 square miles. 

Conspicuous amongst the chain of volcanoes stretching along the north side of 
Flores are Rokka, or Ombuu Soi-o (6,900 feet), and farther east, in the Endeh 
district, a name sometimes applied to the whole island, Gunong Keo, or Roma, 
believed to be the culminating point (9,200 feet). South of the village of Endeh 
(Ambogaga) rises the Gunong Api, and the natives report to the north of the 
same place the Gunong Kingo, which is said to have been the scene of several 
eruptions during the historic period. At the south-east corner of Flores stands 
the double-crested Lobetobi volcano, one of whose cones, the Laki-Laki, or the 
" Man " (7,160 feet), is always smoking, while the other, Perampuan, or the 
" Woman" (7,460 feet), is covered on the inner walls of its crater with incrustations 
of sulphur. 

The extinct Kabalelo (7,o00 feet) commands one of the passages of Larantuka 
Strait, facing the island of Solor ; the strait itself takes its name from another volcano, 
called also Ilimandiri (5, 180 tVet), at the north-east extremity of Flores. This moun- 



tain is at present quiescent, but at its foot are numerous thermal springs, tlirough 
which the subterranean heats still manifest themselves. Near the village of 
Geliting on the north coast, mention is made of another crater, which, however, has 
not yet been identified. 

South of the Tanjong Bunga, or " Promontory of Flowers," whence the Portu- 

Fig. 86. — Laeantitka Strait. . 
Scale 1 : 1,000,003. 

E,t;5 of: Greenwich 


100 to 1,000 1,000 Fatbcms 

Fathoms. and upwai-ds. 

guese term, Flores, a channel about l,-300 yards broad at its narrowest part sepa- 
rates this i.sland from the islet of Adonare, and farther south from Solor, which, 
although the smallest member of the group, gives its name to the archipelago 
stretching east from Flores. Adonare is much more poijulous as well as larger, 
and farther cast follows the still more extensive I.omblem. The two islands of the 


Allor group, Pautar iind Ombaai, visited by Pigafetta, companion of Magellan, and 
described by bim under tbe name of Maluva, are also larger tban Solor, while 
round about tbe cbief lands are scattered a large number of reefs and islets. All 
are billy and from many lava streams have been discharged. The highest cones 
are Lamahale (5,000 feet), in Adonare, and LobctoUe (4,900 feet), which forms the 
northern headland of Lomblem. 

. The inhabitants of Flores and of the neighbouring islands are of a mixed cha- 
racter. Those of the coastlands, who for the most part speak the Malay dialect 
of Biraa, belong to the same groujoas the natives of Siimbawa, and, like them, con- 
struct their dwellings in the Malay fashion on the solid ground, and not raised on 
piles after the manner of the Papuans. Nevertheless the natives of the interior 
both in Flores and Solor appear to have a darker complexion than those of the 
seaboard, and are said to betray both in their features and usages a marked affinity 
to the Papuan inhabitants of New Guinea. Like the peoijles of Sumbawa and 
Lombok, nearly all claim to be followers of the Prophet. But the Portuguese, who, 
down to the middle of this century, occupied the eastern jDart of Flores with the 
adjacent archipelagoes, displaj^ed far greater zeal than their Dutch successors for 
the conversion of their pagan subjects. Hence some of the Malays in these islands 
still call themselves both " Portuguese" and " Christians." They may even have 
some Portuguese blood in their veins, and priests from Timor pay occasional visits 
to their communities in order to baptise the children, solemnise marriages, and 
bless the graves of the departed. 

Larantuha, an old Portuguese stronghold at the foot of the volcano of like 
name and on the west side of Flores Strait, has become the capital of the Dutch 
possessions in these waters. The place is yearly visited during the north-west 
monsoon by a fleet of native craft from Celebes, returning with the south-eastern 
trade-winds, and exchanging textiles, pottery, and hardware for mother-of-pearl, 
sea-cucumbers, edible birds'-nests and other local produce. 

The Celebes traders also visit a few other seaports, such as Adonare, in the 
island of the same name, Lawaijaug, capital of Solor, and AUor KatjU, at the north- 
west extremity of Ombaai. These places with their archipelagoes all depend 
administratively on the province of Flores, while the district of Mangeraai in 
Flores itself is attached to Sumbawa. 


This island, called also "Sunda," although lying in the deep waters of the 
Indian Ocean outside the line of the Sunda Islands proper, forms a little world 
apart from the surrounding lands. Separated from Komodo and Flores by an arm 
of the sea some 60 miles broad and over 100 fathoms deep, its quadrilateral mass 
is disposed, not oast and west, parallel with the Little Sundas, but in the direction 
from north-west to south-cast. It possesses no active volcanoes, and igneous rocks 
appear to occupy but a small portion of its surface. Nearly the whole of the 
island, in fact, is believed to be of sedimentary formation. The south coast consists 

SUMBA. 209 

entirely of limestone cliffs pierced by caverns, which are frequented by myriads of 
edible-nest builders. Towards the centre the somewhat level surface presents the 
aspect of a plateau rising to a height of 2,000 feet above the sea, and develojDing 
ranges of hills and mountains only on the north side. 

Amongst the numerous names, such as Sumba, Chandana or Chindaua, given 
to this island, there is one, that of Sandalwood, which it scarcely deserves any 
longer, i'oi' this valuable tree, which formerly covered the coast-lands, almost 
entirely disappeared during a terrific explosion and is now found only in the heart 
of the island. There arc two v-arieties, the red and the grey, the latter being the 
more valued and much used in the powdered state as a cosmetic and medicinally. 
Sumba also f)ossesses some gold deposits, and was regarded as one of the legendary 
" Golden Isles." 

Notwithstanding the generally peaceful disposition of the natives, who are 
divided into numerous small communities, the interior is still little known. The 
estimate of the population, till recently ranging from 200,000 to 1,000,000, is at 
present about 400,000, a relatively large number for an area not exceeding 4,300 
square miles. The people are all of Malay stock, but speak a j)eculiar dialect 
unintelligible to the surrounding populations. Like their eastern neighbours of 
the Savu group, they have preserved the worship of ancestry mingled with rites 
and tenets which attest Hindu influence. Thus, they speak of a trinity of 
mysterious deities, the Good, the Protector, and Evil One ; but the offerings of 
the "elders " are made, not to these superior beings, but to the ocean waves, to the 
forest trees, to the rocky headlands and the graves of their forefathers. There 
are neither temples nor priests, unless the heads of families and the old men of 
the tribe can be regarded as such. In the Savu islands, however, the title of 
priesfis borne by the executioner, who beheads the criminals condemned b}' the 

Naucjamexni, on the north coast, where there is a small Arab trading settle- 
ment, is the chief maikct in Sumba, and from this port are forwarded hardy little 
ponies to all parts of Indonesia and even to Mauritius and Australia. This island 
jointly with the Savu group (Great Savu, Ranjuna, and Dana) constitutes an 
administrative district dependent on Timor. The population of Savu exceeded 
30,000 in 1869, when half of the inhabitants of the archipelago were swcjit away 
by an outbreak of small-pox. At present the population is estimated at 16,000 
in a total area of less than 200 square miles. According to AV^allace the natives 
resemble the Hindus or Arabs in physical appearance much more than they do the 

Timor and Rotti. 

Like Sumba, Timor, largest of the Little Sundas, lies beyond the line of 
volcanic islands. Disjjosed in the direction from south-west to north-east, it 
forms an acute angle with that chain, which, in crossing, it appears to have 
deflected from west and east to the same south-west and north-east direction 
parallel with itself. Hence the links of the Sunda volcanic chain lying farther 

\UL. XIV. 1' 



eust bend rouud to the north-east in such a way as to continue the axis of Timor 
as far as IVihi. It seems, therefore, probable that in the general modelling of the 
terrestrial crust, Timor and these islands have been subjected to a common process 
of folding in some remote geological eijoch. 

Like Sumatra and Madagascar, Timor presents towards the Indian Ocean a far 
more regular coast-line than towards the inland northern waters. Notwith- 
standing its geographical importance at the south-east corner of Indonesia over 
against Australia, it has been so little studied that the population can only be 
approximately estimated. Politically it is divided in nearly equal proportions 
between Portugal and Holland ; but the Portuguese half, which depends adminis- 
tratively on Macao, and which comprises fifty-four " kingdoms," some still com- 

JTig. 87. — TiMOB AND Nbiohbouking Islands. 
Scale 1 : 6,600,000. 


pletely independent, is said to have a population of half a million, while the Dutch 
section appears to contain scarcely half that number. 

• The Malay term Timor, that is, the " East," shows that this island long formed 
the eastern limit of navigation in Indonesia. According to tradition the natives 
were savages, ignorant of agriculture, and living only on the chase and fishing, 
when the first Malay immigrants landed on the south coast, where is now the petty 
state of Waiwiko-Waihali. These settlers, who introduced rice and maize and 
iron implements, are said to have come- from Teruate towards the close of the 

TIMOR. ■ 211 

fourteentli century, and soon made tbemselves masters, everywhei-e imposino- 
d3-nasties supposed to owe a certain vague allegiance to the Sultan of Ternate. 

The first European arrivals were the Portuguese, who appear to have secured a 
footing at Lifau, towards the middle of ihe north coast, about the year 1520. 
Soon after they raised a fort at Kupang, now the chief station or the Dutch, who 
first made their appearance in 1613. The desolating wars of the two rival powers 
and their native alKes were continued almost uninterrupted!}' down to the present 
century, when they were replaced by diplomatic negotiations, the treaty of 1859 
finally settling the question of the frontier line between the respective states. 

According to the partial explorations round the coast and in the interior, Timor 
seems to present a backbone of mountains and plateaus, consisting mainh' of schists, 
sandstones and limestones ; but on both slopes these older formations underlie 
chalks and argillaceous deposits of great thickness. The coral reefs fringing the 
south-west coast have gradually been upheaved several hundred yards above the 
present sea-level. In some places the rocks of the primitive system tower up 
above the surrounding formations in the form of obelisks and citadels, one of which, 
Mount Leeu, in the south-west, attains an elevation of 4,000 feet. Farther east 
follow stdl more lofty peaks, although within the Dutch or western province none 
of the summits reach an altitude of over 6,500 feet. 

In the Portuguese • division the surface is of a more rugged aspect, and here 
the Kabalaki peak, visited by H. 0. Forbes, exceeds 10,000 feet, while Mount 
Alias, close to the frontier and near the south coast, is said to rise 11,500 feet above 
the Indian Ocean. The existence of true volcanoes has not yet been placed 
beyond doubt, although mention is made of a Mount Ilun-bano in the west, which 
was the scene of an eruption in 1856, while Bibiluto in the Portuguese territory is 
said to have ejected ashes the following year. In several districts porphyries and 
serpentines have cropped out above the sedimentary rocks, and the islet of 
Kambing, between Samau and the south-west extremity, terminates in a sort of 
crater, ■within which are several mud volcanoes, 10 to 30 feet high, resembling the 
Sicilian maccahde. Mud volcanoes also occur in Landu, between Samau and 

In Timor the seasons are much more sharply defined than in the large islands 
of Western Indonesia. During the south-east monsoon, prevailing from May to 
October, the winds blowing from the neighbouring Australian continent bring no 
moisture, the vegetation withers, and wherever the slopes are covered with grasses. 
or scrub, they assume red, yellow, or greyish tints. The brooks and even the 
rivers run dry, and are not again flushed till the return of the western monsoon, 
when vegetation revives and the land resumes its verdant aspect. The northern 
slope of the island enjoys the most copious rainfall, and consequently here the 
streams are most voluminous, the forests most extensive, and the population most 
numerous and prosperous. But the southern slope is far from being so arid or 
unproductive as it has been described by travellers who have visited it only during 
the dry season. 

The same contrast between the two slopes is also presented by the respective 




Horas uud faunas. The side facing Austntlia abounds must iu forms characteristic 


of that continent, while the opjjosite side belongs more to the animal and 

TnroE. 213 

vegetable zones of the Sundas and Moluccas. But Timor is on the whole com- 
paratively poor in biological species, and in this respect forms joart rather of the 
Australian than of the Asiatic world. Here occurs the eucalyptus, a peculiarly 
Australian plant, while the vegetation of the interior often recalls the African flora. 

The only feline animal is a long-oared wild cat, and the largest quadruped is a 
species of deer resembling one found both in Java and the Moluccas. The only 
member of the simian family is the Cercopitheciis eijnomolguK, and t^^•o-thilds of 
all the mammalian species belong to the widespread bat family. The most 
dreaded animals are the green trigonocephalus and the crocodile, from whom the 
rulers of Kupang claim descent. At the accession of a new rajah, his subjects 
thronged to the waterside to render homage to his saurian relatives : the first that 
came to the surface was regarded as his Majesty's cousin ; a beautiful maiden, 
gaily decked and perfumed, was presented to him as his consort and devoured 
amidst (he applause of the multitude. 

The natives of Timor are not classed with the Malaj's properly so-called, and 
ajipear to be more akin to the Bornean Dayaks. Despite the statements of several 
writers, there are no dark or Papuan tribes in the island, all the inhabitants of 
which have the light, yellowish complexion of the Malay, and differ from each 
other rather in their dress and arms than in stature or features. They are divided 
into a large number of distinct clans or communities, speaking according to 
Crawfurd as many as forty different idioms. ' The largest ethnical group is that of 
the Ema-Velus (the Belunays of the Dutch), who occupy all the eastern section 
and a great part of the centre. They claim to have come from the Moluccas, and 
attribute the same origin to their western neighbours, the Timorese properly 
so-called ; whom, however, they also call Ema-"Davan, or " Javanese." 

Some Bugis, Chinese and European traders are settled in all the seaports, and 
a half-caste people, the so-called " Black Portuguese," have become established 
especially in the northern princijaalities of Ambenu, Okusse and Noimuti, forming 
a Portuguese enclave within the Dutch frontier. 

The natives who have not yet been brought under the influence of the 
Protestant and Catholic missionaries have a somewhat developed animistic form of 
religion. They worship Usi-Neno, " Lord of Light," who dwells in the Sim, and 
whose wife is the moon. The stars are the abode of an inferior order of deities ; 
but while paying reverence to these remote divinities, the Timorese address their 
supplications chieflj"- to the natural objects round about them, the mountains and 
rocks, trees, running waters, and the like ; they also make offerings to the souls of 
the departed; who are regarded as the indispensable intermediate agents for all 
communications between man and the higher divinities. 

The laws of pomaji or taboo are as intricate and as carefully observed as 
amongst the Polynesians and some Malagasy tribes. In fact the religious ideas 
pervading the oceanic regions are so uniform that thej^ can scarcely have been 
independently evolved, and point rather at a common civilisation at one time 
diffused throughout the whole area from Madagascar to the remote South-Sea 



In Timor every village has its temple bid away in some sacred grove and 
surrounded by a stout enclosure. Each petty state has its special sanctuary, a 
ballowed spot wbicb the profane dare not approach, for in it dwells the lulik, or 
tutelar genius, seated in the centre of the edifice on a stone cast down from 
heaven by the Lord of Light. There are also evil spirits, to which are sacrificed 
black victims, the animals with red coats being reserved for the protecting deitios. 

The Timorese tattoo various parts of the body with thorns, file the teeth to a 
point, and often dye them red " in order not to look like apes." The usages 

Fig. 80. — KuPANO. 
i-'oale 1 ; 30 '.000. 

connected with marriage and inheritance differ greatly in the different districts. 
In some places exogamous, in others endogamous rites prevail. In one tribe the 
succession is from father to son : in another through the female line. The young 
men in some communities can neither marry nor enter the public assemblies" until 
they have carried ofp one or more heads, as in Borneo, but only in open warfare or 
else at funeral ceremonies. The penal code is very severe, death being the 
penalty for most crimes ; but as ransom is allowed, the poor are the chief victims. 
As in many other places, the rulers, " children of the sun," never die, but only 

TIMOR. 215 

fall asleep, and are not buried till long after the beginning of the "trance." In 
some districts they are exposed in open coffins on the branches of the trees ; in 
others the wives have to keep them night and day for months together, until reduced 
to the state of dried muminies, and then buried with all their treasures beneath 
cairns corresponding in height to the rank of the deceased. They were formerly 
accompanied by an escort of slaves, as they still are by a dog to lead the way iu 
the region beyond the grave. To prevent their return, the route follo\\ed by the 
funeral procession is carefully blocked by a strong bamboo palisade. 

Kiqmng, capital of the Dutch territory and of the neighbouring islands, is one 
of the unhealthiest places in Indonesia. It lies at the south-western extremity of 
Timor, on the south side of a deep inlet too confined for the air to circulate freelj-. 
Yet its official position and safe harbour have made it the chief trading place in 
the island, with a motley population of about seven thousand Timorese, Mala3'8, 
Chinese and Europeans. Its principal exports are sandalwood, horses, excellent 
oranges and beeswax. The neighbouring fishing grounds and oj'ster beds j'ield 
great varieties of fish, besides pearls, tortoise-shell, sea-cucumbers and shark's fins 
for the Chinese market. The people of Rotti prepare large quantities of a much- 
esteemed palm wine, and rear an excellent breed of little ponies, " about the size 
of Newfoundland dogs." 

Afapupii, another seaport on the north coast near the Portuguese fioutier, lies 
in the province of Filarang, which is said to be one of the richest iu copper ores, 
though mining operations have scarcely yet been seriousl}^ begun. 

Dilli, administrative centre of the Portuguese territory, is a less important 
place than Kupang, and appears even to have entered on a state of decline, the 
population having fallen from over five thousand about the middle of the century 
to little more than three thousand in 1879. It is even a more unhealthy town 
than its Dutch rival, but has the advantage of a good roadstead, from which it 
presents a pleasant appearance. Its exports are chiefly coffee of superior quality,, 
wax, and sandalwood; rice being the c staple import. The wheat grown on the 
plateaux and slopes to a height of about three thousand feet is much esteemed. 
North of Dilli rises the steep rock of Kambing, the only islet be3-ond Timor which 
the treaties have left to the Portuguese ; it has a population of about two thou- 

The Zuid-Wester (Seewatty) Islands. 

These " South-western " groups, so-called because mostly Ij'ing to the south- 
west of Amboyna, their administrative and commercial centre, are better known by 
their English name Serwatty, which, in fact, is a corruption of the Dutch " Zuid- 
Wester." The southern and more numerous islands form an eastern extension of 
Timor, of which they are, so to say, merely scattered fragments. But the central 
chain, of which Wetter forms by far the largest link, belongs to the volcanic 
Sundanese system, while Gunong Api (the "Burning Mountain"), with a few 
scattered rocks farther north, are supposed by Junghuhn to constitute the eastern 


extremity of another igneous range indicated at intervals by a few islets rising 
above the surface. 

But however they maj' differ in their sedimentarj', volcanic, or coralline 
origin, the Serwatty groups resemble each other in their political and commercial 
history. The most striking in form and relief are naturally the igneous islands, 
conspicuous ardongst which is the superb but now smokeless cone of Gunong Api. 
Wetter (Wetta), facing the north coast of Timor, is traversed by a line of craters, 
amid which the timid natives have taken refuge. Kisser (Kissa), lying farther 
east and nearest to Timor, is also mountainous, and in the last century was chosen 
as the administrative centre of the whole group ; but it suffers fropi a deficient 
rainfall, and its inhabitants have often been driven by famine to emigrate to the 
surrounding lands. Eoma, which follows to the north-east, is on the contrary 
productive enough to export some of its superabundant produce. The chain is 
continued north-eastwards through Damma, with its smoking crater and thermal 
springs, to Nila, with a still active cone, and Sarua, the last eastern links in the 
Sundanese igneous system. 

The southern chain, stretching between Timor and Timor Laut, begins with 
Letti, most densely peopled of all the Serwatty Islands ; it is followed eastward by 
Moa, also very populoiis and noted for its peak, the "Buffalo," which looks like a 
reduced copy of Teneriffe. The neighbouring Lakor is a mere coral bank rising 
little more than twent_y feet above the surface. Luang is also fringed with reefs, 
where are taken the most highly prized sea-cucumbers in the whole archipelago. 
Sermatta, forming a long chain of steep hills with no accessible creek, is little 
visited by skippers, whereas Babber (Baba), with its numerous islets, including the 
lovely little AVetang, is much frequented by native craft. 

During the- last century, when the Company kept a factory and a fort in almost 
every island, the natives of Serwatty had mostly become Christians, adopting a 
dark costume and European names as an outward sign of their conversion. In 1825 
and 1826 the chaplain accompanying Kolff's expedition had scarcelj' landed in a 
village, when he was surrotmdcd by these "Christians," entreating him to solem- 
nise their marriages and baptize their children. Some could still read and write, 
and, as they were nearly everywhere looked on as a superior race, they had suc- 
ceeded in imposing a kind of slavery on those natives who had remained pagans. 
Their authority is now all the greater that they claim the title of Anak Compani, 
or " Children of the Company," on the ground of descent from European fathers 
and native women. But of late years Islam has made considerable progress in the 
Archipelago. The natives of several islands, especially Wetter and Kisser, are 
designated by the name of Alf uru ; a term, however, which has no ethnical value, and 
which is indifferently applied in many places to the indigenous inhabitants, what- 
ever their origin, that have hitherto resisted Mohammedan and Christian influences. 

The Soitth-Eastern GRours : Tenimher and Kei. 
These groups were named the " South-Eastern Islands " by the Dutch in refe- 
rence to Amboyna, their chief political and trading station in those distant waters. 



On the other hand the Macassar navigators gave to the largest of the Tenimber 
Archipelago the name of Timor-Laut, or "Seaward Eastland," to indicate its 
position in reference to Celebes. From the geographical standpoint they may be 
regarded as collectively forming the eastern limit of the Indonesian world; bej'ond 

Fig. 90. — Tenimeee. 
Scale 1 : 1,700,<X)0. 

tbem flows the Arafiira Sea, whose shores arc inhabited by Papuasian and Austra- 
lian populations. 

These thinly-peopled i.slands have not yet been thoroughly explored, and even 
the coasts are here and there still traced with iincertain lines. Till recentlv 


Tenimber (Taaah Imber) was siipijosed to stretch imiuterrupttdly to tlie southern 
extremity of the Archipelago, and this error still figures on most maps. Yet the 
natives are quite aware that their territory is divided into two distinct islands, to 
each of which ttey give a special name. Owen Stanley had already stated in 
1839 that Tenimber comprised several separate islands, and in 1878 the Egeron, a 
ship from Banda, traversed the channel between Yamdena and Selaru) varying 
from eight to forty fathoms in depth, and presenting several excellent havens on 
both sides. But the hydrographic survey of the group is still far from complete, 
and. so recently as 1888 a hitherto unknown island two miles long was discovered 
at the south-west extremity of the Archipelago. 

The two chief islands, consisting of limestone rock, are almost everywhere low, 
and the highest point of the whole group is the volcanic islet of Laibobar, off the 
west side of Yamdena, rising, according to Forbes, to a height of about two thou- 
sand feet. The islet of Larat, separated by the navigable Wallace Strait from 
Yamdena, is also low, but beyond it rises the precipitous islet of Verdate, at the 
northern extremity of the Tenimber group. The archipelago is skirted on the 
west side by a parallel line of islets and reefs, which, lying mostly in shallow 
water, are little accessible to shipping. 

Owing to tbe porous nature of the calcareous soil the rain-water almost every- 
where disappears without forming fertilising streams; hence, vast tracts have 
remained barren and uninhabited. Some of the slopes are, -nevertheless, clothed 
with dense brushwood, where the cattle, let loose by the early navigators, find a 
refuge from the native hunters. Large herds of wild boars infest the neighbour- 
hood of the villages ; but Tenimber, like most of the Moluccas, has no monkeys, 
and its fauna generally presents a New Guinea aspect. 

The natives recognise no rulers, although certain individuals claim the empty 
title of chief. In appearance they resemble the Malays much more than the 
Papuans, although they are evidently a mixed race. Both sexes slightly tattoo the 
forehead,, cheeks, breast, and hands, and the women deck themselves with bracelets 
and necklets of red glass beads. The wealthy natives convert into heavy rings 
and ear ornaments the gold coins they take in exchange for their holothurise and 
tortoise-shell ; in the decoration of their praus and dwellings they also display far 
greater artistic taste than their Malay neighbours. They have hitherto resisted the 
proselytising attempts of the Arabs and other Mohammedans.. Nevertheless they 
worship a supreme deity, Dwadilah, symbolised by a sacred post and other rude 
images set up in front of their dwellings. They also believe in a future state for 
themselves and all living beings, and the fisherman never fails to return to the sea 
a portion of his capture, so that the soul of the fish may swim away to the sjiirit 

The Kei (Ke) Islands were probably so named by the Portuguese, for the term 
appears to be identical with that of the Koys, that is, the Cayos, of Florida. Lying 
nearer to Banda and Amboyna than Tenimber, this group, to which the surrounding 
populations give the name of Evar, or Hog Islands, has been brought more under 
Mohammedan influences. They manufacture earthenware, and build excellent 

CELEBES. » 219 

praus, which are exported to all the neighbouring archipelagoes. Two-thirds of 
the inhabitants are centred in Great Kei, the largest member of the group ; but 
Dula, the most frequented station, lies in Little Kei, on a deep inlet well sheltered 
by a chain of insular hills. Recently some planters have settled in the islands, 
the chief products of which are holothuria; and tortoise-shell, both of excellent 

Celebes axu aojacext Islands. 

Celebes, which in extent tukes the third, in population and commercial impor- 
tance the fourth place in Indonesia, vies with Java itself for romantic beauty and 
the variety of its natural phenomena. It consists, so to say, of a framework of pen- 
insular ranges, radiating from a central nucleus, and enclosing extensive marine 
inlets, which, vmlike those of Borneo, have not yet been transformed to alluvial 
plains. Northwards the peninsula of Gorontalo and Minahassa sweeps round in a 
double curve to the north and east. In the centre two other peninsular masses 
project north-east to the Molucca waters and south-east to the Bauda Sea ; lastly, 
in the south is developed the ilacassar peninsula, stretching due south to the 
Flores Sea. Thanks to this extraordinary conformation Celebes, with an area of 
about 75,000 square miles, has a coastline of no less than 3,500 miles, excluding the 
secondary indentations. In other words, although little over one-third the size of 
France, it has a seaboard equal in extent to that of France and the Iberian Penin- 
sula taken together. 

This eccentric island, ever^-^'here so easily accessible from the sea, and, more- 
over, enjoying an extremely fertile soil and a superabundance of natural resources, 
is nevertheless almost destitute of inhabitants. Were it as denselj* peopled as 
Java, it would have a population of some thirty millions, whereas, according to the 
approximate estimates the actual population is little over three-quarters of a million. 
But although nominally under the Dutch rule, most of the interior is still occupied 
by Alfurus, that is, wild tribes for the most part living in isolated and hostile 
groups. In many places head-hunters still prowl about the villages, and till 
recently the neighbouring waters were infested by corsairs, continually sweeping 
down on the natives and carrying them off into slavery. Nor was the Dutch occu- 
pation effected without many sanguinary struggles, not always to the advantage 
of the invaders. The Europeans appeared first as guests, and the early conflicts 
were connected with questions of trade rights. Then the Dutch presented 
themselves as rivals of the Portuguese in 1660, when they seized the fort of 
Macassar, long their only possession on the coast. Later they concluded a treaty 
of alliance and a protectorate with several petty states in the south-western 
peninsula, and since that time they have omitted no occasion of strengthening 
their position in the island. Yet in most of the inland states they are still 
unrepresented by any officials,' and even the coast districts are visited only at long 

Celebes has not yet been completely explored, and some parts are known only 



in a general way. The Lutimojong highland.s, which form the cenfral nucleus, 
and from which flow the largest rivers, are one of the least known regions, and 
travellers have hitherto failed to form an estimate of the elevations. According 
to Schneider the main range, beginning at Cape Pales (Donggala) on the west 
coast, runs south-east towards the Latimojong mountains, beyond which it traverses 

Fig. ni. — ExpLOEED Regions of Cele£es. 
Soile 1 : 8,000,000. 


2,000 Fathom « 
and upwards 

The finished parts of the map represent the regions completely sui-veyed by the Dutch. 

the south-eastern peninsula. The framework of these highlands consists of gneiss 
and granites, which in some places crop out above the secondary and tertiary rocks 
of both slopes. A lateral ridge of gneiss, radiating from the central nucleus, forms 
the backbone of the Balante peninsula, while that of Macassar, traversed in 1888 
by Weber and Wichmann, is also dominated by crystalline or paleozoic ranges. 



Fig. 92. — Saleyee. 
Scile 1 : 9CX),0.;o. 

wLicb, however, are not disposed ijarullel with the coasts, but run in a tran.sveiso 
direction towards the south-west, one of them terminating in the granite headland 
of Cape Mandhar. Farther south rises the isohited mass of Dikbuik, better known 
by the name of Bonthain, or Bantaeng, from the town at its foot. Bonthain, 
which ^^as found by Weber and Wich- 
niann to be of volcanic origin, as already 
su.spected by Beccari, is the culminating 
point of Celebes (10,270 feet). 

The south-east corner of the Macassar 
peninsula is continued seawards by a few 
islets and the long, hilly isla-nd of Salayer 
(Saleyer), or Limbangang, with heights ex- 
ceeding 3,000 feet, and at one point attain- 
ing an altitude of 6,840 feet. A curious 
aud hitherto unexplained phenomenou is 
the glow of light observed in the evening 
at both extremities of Salayer during the 
prevalence of high winds. Salayer is itself 
continued southwards by other islets, such 
as Tambolongang, Pulasi, Rusa, Tanah 
Jampea, and Bonerate, which belong ad- 
miuistratively to Celebes, and whicli like 
Baton, at the extremity of the south- 
eastern peninsula, maj^ also be regarded 
as forming j^art of the same geological 

Although no volcanoes ha ye been dis- 
covered in the central parts, there can be 
no doubt that in remote times Celebes was 
the scene of considerable eruptions. In 
several districts, and especially near Maros, 
in the province of Macassar, the limestone 
formations rest on basalt rocks, which here 
and there even crop out above the sedi- 
nientarj' deposits. 

The northern peninsula, attached to the 

rest of the island by a low, narrow isthmus, [ 1 i i 

forms geographically and geologically a dis- o to 32 32 Feet and 

tinct region. East of Tomini, where the ^"" ''''^'""'" 

. IS Miles. 

isthmus IS contracted to a width of about 18 

miles, aud commanded by the lofty Mount Donda (!),o00 feet), the peninsula is 
traversed by chains of gneiss and aui iferous quartz hill.s, and at the poiut where 
it trends towards the north-east more recent lavas and scoria; have burst through 
the other formations. Here rises the Saputan volcano (0,170 feet), the theatre of 



several disturbances during the present century. In the neighbourhood are the 
thermal waters and still active mud volcanoes of Panghu. 

Towards the northern extremity of Minaliassa follow other volcanoes, such as 
the twin-crested Klabal (6,800 feet), the Duwa Sadera, or " Two Sisters " (4,550 
feet), and Lakon (5,570 feet), all visible as far as Ternate. This igneous system is 
continued in a northerly direction seawards, thus connecting Indonesia with the 
Philippines at the southern headland of Mindanao. Several of the intervening 

Fig-. 93. — MiNAHASSA. 
Scale 1 : 1,200,000. 

i.-tlets are still active volcanoes, and Duang (Ruang), west of Tagulanda, forms a 
cone 1,720 feet bigh, which emitted flames in 1856. Siao, lying farther north, is 
often wrapped in smoke, and in the larger island of Sanguir (Sangi) rises the 
superb volcano of Abu, which has been the scene of several disastrous eruptions 
during the last two centuries. 

The peculiar conformation of Celebes prevents the development of any large 
rivers. Nevertheless certain ranges are so disposed as to form longitudinal plains 
where the streams run for a considerable distance parallel with the coast before 



reaclnug the sea. Thus the Bahu Solo, rising in Lake Tafuti, traverses the south- 
Fig. 94.— The Tondano Cascade, Mixahassa. 

eustcm p.nin.ula for a distauee of about l.JU mik-s. The Sadang also, flowiu. 


between two ohlique mountaiu ranges in the Macassar peninsula, has a length 
of no less than 240 miles. On the eastern slope of the same peniasula the copious 
river Tjeurana, fed by several northern and southern tributaries and by the shallow 
Tempe (Tamparang) lagoons, is navigable for boats for some 60 miles from its 
mouth. Of the other lacustrine basins one of the most romantic is Lake Tondauo, 
which lies at an altitude of 2,000 feet near the northern extremity of Minahassa. 
After piercing a winding gorge the emissary of this basin suddenly plunges from 
a height of 490 feet into a* rocky cirque, whence it escapes through a broad valley 
northwards to Menado. 

Climate, Flora, and Fauxa of Celebes. 

Like Borneo, Celebes is crossed by the equator, which leaves the three 
southern peninsulas in the Austral, that of Minahassa in the northern hemisphere; 
hence the mean temperature is high, ranging from about 90"^ F. in the day to 
70° F. at night. But these extremes are usually temjiered by the alternating land 
and sea breezes, which prevail round the whole periphery of the island. The 
rain-bearing clouds brought b}^ the south-eastern and north-western monsoons 
being intercepted by the inland ranges discharge an abundance of moisture on 
both slopes, but especially in the Macassar peninsula, which is exposed to the 
"bad monsoon." Thus with a yearly rainfall varying from 40 to IGO inches, 
Celebes seldom suffers from drought, and in other respects enjoys one of the 
most salubrious climates in Indonesia. 

Its flora almost rivals in splendour and variety that of the Sunda Islands ; its 
forests even appear more beautiful, having to a large extent j)reserved their 
primeval aspect, especially in the wonderful Minahassa peninsula. But while the 
radigeuous flora is closely allied to that of the western islands, the fauna jji-eseuts 
considerable differences. Separated by deep waters from the surrounding lands, 
Celebes appears to have enjoyed its insular indeijendence long enough to impart 
an original character to its fauna. Lying midway between Asia and Australasia, 
it possesses some species belonging to both of these zoological areas ; but it also 
presents numerous forms quite distinct from either, and often more allied with 
African than with Indian or Australian types. Amongst these are the Cynopitheciis 
iiic/rescens, a baboon occurring nowhere else in Indonesia except the small island of 
Batian ; the Anoa depressicorius, with the horns of the antelope, but by man)- 
naturalists classed with the bovine familj^ and greatly resembling certain African 
species ; the famous Babirmsa, half pig, half deer, with four sj^iral tusks. There 
are no felines, but five varieties of the squirrel, and two marsupials, Celebes 
being the extreme eastern and western limit of the former and latter respec- 
tively. ■ • 

Inhabitants of Celebes. 

The native popvdations are usually classed as Malays and Alfurus ; a division, 
however, which is much more of a social than an ethnical character. The 



cultured coastlauders, -who speak or understand Malay or allied idioms, are 
regarded as members of the dominant Indonesian race, -n-hile the inland wild 
tribes, whatever their physical types and speech, are indiscriminately grouped as 
Alfurus. Hence this name is dropped when any of those tribes exchange their 
savage waj-s for a settled life on the coffee plantations. Many of these indigenous 

Fig. 95. — Maoassak and the South-West EEGIO^' of C'ei.ei3E3. 
Scale 1 : Sio.OOO. 


peoples betray undoubted traces of mixed descent, and individuals are often met 
■with the characteristic features and hair of the Papuans. 

One of the dominant nations are the Bugis, whose original home is the 
kingdom of Boni, in the south-western peninsula. From this region they have 
spread to the neighbouring provinces, and have even foimded settlements in many 
remote parts of the Eastern Archipelago. Like their Mangkassar (Macassar) and 
Wajo neighbours, the Bugis are of middle size, but robust, vigorous, and active, 



witli a complexion somewhat lighter than that of other Malays. They are a brave, 
haughty people, but very revengeful, and more addicted to " running amuck " 
than any other Indonesian communities. 

The Bugis have long enjoj-ed the reputation of being daring and enterprising 
mariners, and they have completely monopolised the local trade in many of the 
surrounding lands. Although they purchase no slaves, creditors reduce their 
defaulting debtors to a state of absolute servitude, regarding this law as the 
essential condition of their widespread commercial enterprise. Their women enjoy 
a certain liberty, practising the industrial arts, such as weaving and embroidery, 
and often even learning to read and write either Malay or Bugi, this idiom 
possessing, like the Mangkassar, a jDeculiar alphabet of Indian origin. Towards 
the middle of the seventeenth century the Bugis, yielding to the Mohammedan 
missionaries, abandoned their old animistic religion, which had been p)rofoundly 
affected by Hindu influences. They even still observe many rites connected with 
the worship of Siva, and the doctrine of metempsychosis explains the respect even 
now paid to the crocodiles swarming in the moats of their citadels. 

The Alfurus of the central districts are divided into many tribal groups, such 
as the Torajas, a term often applied collectively to all the pagan savages of the 
interior. The Toj)antunuasus, or " Dog-eaters," of the Lake Posso district, eat 
the brain and drink the blood of their enemies. Even some of the islands off the 
coast are still occupied by wild beasts in human form. Those of Peling Island, 
near the Balante p)eninsula, roam naked in the forests and take refuge at night 
amid the branches of the trees. 

But in the extreme north the civilised and confederate peoples of Minahassa, 
that is, " Brotherhood," vie with the Bugis and Mangkassars of the extreme 
south in the arts of peace and industry. The Minahassans and their western 
neighbours are distinguished above most Indonesians for their remarkably light 
complexion, many being quite as fair as Europeans and distinguishable from them 
only by their more prominent cheek-bones. Dumont d'Urville was struck by 
their surprising resemblance to the Tongans and Maoris of Eastern Polynesia. 
At the beginning of the present century most of the Minahassans were still 
head-hunters, and even devoured human flesh at their great feasts. But since 
then they have become quiet, peaceful citizens, very industrious and skilled 
artisans. The chiefs wear the European dress, and the pure Malay taught in 
the schools is gradually replacing the thousand local dialects. This remark- 
able change is mainly due to the cultivation of the soil, and especially to the 
coffee plantations, which since 1822 have been rapidly developed throughout 
the Minahassa districts. Besides coffee, the chief cultivated plants are sugar- 
cane, tobacco, kosso (Manilla hemp), the nutmeg, sago, rice and maize. This 
district also yields for export gutta-percha, wax, honey, mother-of-pearl, 
tortoise-shell, edible nests and algse. Nearly all the Minahassans have accepted 
Christianity, Avhereas most of the other cultured Celebians are followers of 
the Prophet. 


Topography of Celebes. 

The most famous city in Celebes is Mangkassar (Macassar), tlie UJitng Pandang 
of the natives, and by the Dutch often called Vtaardingen, from the fort of that 
name erected in the centre of the town. Xorth of this fort stretches the busy 
native quarter, with its crowded streets, shipping, and Bugi, Chinese, and Arab 
traders ; to the south lies the European quarter, with its avenues of large trees, 
and numerous shady gardens. Macassar, occupjing one of the most convenient 
positions for trade in Indonesia, had already been much frequented \>\ the Malays 
when it was seized by the Portuguese in 1538. The Dutch occupation dates from 
the erection of Fort \laardingen in 1665, after which trade rapidly increased tiU 
1846, when Macassar was declared a free port, to the detriment of its commercial 
prosperity. A chief item of the export trade is the lakalava extract from the pulp 
of the badu plant, long known in Europe by the name of Macassar oil. The 
roadstead is well sheltered from all winds hj the numerous chains of islets and 
reefs forming the Spermonde Archipelago. 

Although held by the Dutch for over two centuries, the province of Macassar 
has but few good roads. The most important is the route skirting the coast north 
and south of the capital, leading northwards to Maros, residence of a vassal prince, 
and running thence through several petty states to Tanette. Another highway 
running east crosses the rugged region north of Mount Bonthain, reaching the 
east coast at Sinjai and Baking JVipa. The southern route, after passing Goa 
{Gowa), residence of a former powerful sovereign, traverses Glisong, Takalar, and 
other coast towns inhabited by daring mariners. On the south coast of the 
Macassar penins-ula the chief place is Bonthain [Banfaeng), which has succeeded 
Bulakomba as capital of the district. 

"Other "kingdoms" occupy the eastern slope of Macassar and of the two penin- 
sulas radiating eastwards ; but their capitals are mere hamlets, like the numerous 
fishing stations on the creeks and sheltered straits of these waters. Bajoa, the 
port of Boni, at one time the most powerful state in Celebes, is an active centre of 
trade. But the eastern shores of Celebes present little but a monotonous succes- 
sion of headlands, inlets, and wooded tracts, mostly destitute of inhabitants, and 
visited onh* by the Orang-Bajo, the " Gipsies of the sea," in quest of trepang and 

Farther north the shores of the gulf of Tolo or Tomaiki, with all their natural 
advantages, present the same desolate aspect. Even most of the adjacent islands 
are deserted, and of the Sula (Xula) Archipelago the only inhabited islands are 
Sula Besi and Sula Taliabo. The Togean Archipelago also, which lies in the 
northern gulf of Tomini (Gorontolo), has a mixed joopulation of not more than 
four hundred souls. Parigi, at the neck of the northern peninsula, occupies a 
favourable position for trade at the narrowest part of the connecting isthmus, and 
within 21 miles of the Bay of Fains on the opjiosite coast. Palos itself, lying in a 
fertile district on a deep and well-sheltered bay, enjoys quite exceptional com- 
mercial advantages. 




North of Parigi tlic peninsula still continues (o contract between the Bays of 
Dondo and Tomiui. But the whole region is almost depopulated', and Tumini, 
which gives an alternative name to the vast Gulf of Gorontolo, is an obscure 
hamlet comprising some ten or twelve native cabins. Gorontolo [ITolontalo) which 
gives its name both to the gulf and to the northern peninsula of Celebes, lies in a 

Kg. 96. — Adiiinistkative DrrisioNS of Celebes. 

Sc.ile 1 : 12,500,«IO. 

Government of Celebes. 

Eesitlence of Menado 

Eesidence of Temate. Residence of Amboyna. 


Residence of Timor. 

Portuguese Territory. 
210 Miles. 

dried-up laevistrine plain at the mouth of a narrow valley watered by a torrent 
which issues from Lake Limbotto. Beyond this point the coast is almost unin- 
habited as far as the shores of Minahassa, where follow the two jDorts of Bclaixj 
and Kema. 

These places are connected by good routes across the i^eninsula with Menado, 
capital of the province, and northern rival of Macassar in political and commercial 





importance. Menado (Manado), tlie Wenang of the natives, lies on a spacious 
inlet open to the -west and sheltered on the north by several islets, one of which, 
Mcnado Tinea, or " Old Menado," marks the site of the old town, which was 
abandoned in 1682 for the present more secure position on the mainland. Here 
a pleasant little Dutch quarter gradually sprang up roimd about the foot of 
Kieuic-Ainsterdam. But the town itself is little more than a vast garden dotted 
over with rural dwellings and crossed by shady avenues, each terminating with a 
lovely view of sea, islands, and extinct or still smouldering volcanoes. 

The district is enriched by cultivated grounds, which have replaced the primi- 
tive forests, and which are traversed by good roads giving access to the magnifi- 
cent plateau of Tondano, with its coffee plantations, its woodlands, romantic 
winding lake, and waterfall of the river Menado. A little to the west of Tondano 
stands the village of Rurukau, 3,y00 feet above the sea, being the highest group 
of habitations in Minahassa, if not in the whole of Celebes. 

The political and administrative in no way correspond with the natural 
divisions of Celebes.' Thus Sumbawa, one of the lesser Sunda Islands, forms part 
of the Macassar " government," while the petty states on the Gulf of Tolo belong 
to the Sultanate of Ternate, and consequently depend politically on a remote 
eastern islet. The greater part of Celebes is still divided amongst local rulers, 
some classed as direct or indirect feudatories, others as allies, and others again as 
still completely independent. Thus the districts under direct Dutch administration 
occupy but a relatively small part of the territory ; and even here the old adminis- 
trative measures have been partly maintained, the authoritj- being exercised by 
native regents under the control of Dutch Eesidents or Assistants. The system 
of government varies also in the numerous native " kingdoms," most of which a^e 
electoral monarchies limited by custom, the authority of the notables, and priestly 
influence. Wajo, on the east coast of Macassar, is an oligarchy of powerfid families, 
with a prince elected as nominal chief, and a council of forty delegates, including 
some women. The various Bugi states constitute similar oligarchies, where the 
nominal sovereign merely executes the pleasure of his vassals. 

The Southern MoLrccAS : Bueu, Ceram, Amboyxa, Baxda. 

A submarine bed less than 100 fathoms deep connects Celebes and the Xula 
(Sula) Archipelago with Burn, westernmost member of the Moluccas. On the 
other hand this oval island forms a Knk in a chain disposed in the form of an 
arc comprising Ceram, Goram, sundry islets, and in the Kei group intersecting 
another chain of upheaved lands, the already described South-Eastern Islands. 
The chain of the Southern Moluccas, sweeping round some 450 miles first west and 
east, then south-east parallel with Xew Guinea, is well defined by deep waters 
both north and south. Thus Ceram is separated from the Korthern Moluccas by 
an abyss of over 1,500 fathoms, while on the opposite side the Banda Sea has a 
depth of 3,000, and at one point near the Banda volcano 4,280 fathoms. Precisely 
in the centre of this sea rises the submarine plateau of Lucipara, marked by a few 



reefs appearing above the .surface. Witli the exception of Amboyna and Banda, 
which do not lie along the general axis of the Southern Moluccas, all these islands 
are situated beyond the Indonesian volcanic zone. 

The small island of Amboyna, and the still smaller cluster of the Banda islets, 
formerly enjoyed a commercial importance far beyond that of the larger islands 
in these waters. They even still retain their political supremacy, though the 
centre of gravity will probably be eventually shifted towards Buru and Ceram, 

Fig. 97.— BuKU. 
Scale 1 : 2,000,000. 

127° East op Greenwich 


1,000 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

which have already outstripped them in population, and which also j)osses8 excel- 
lent havens. 

Despite its fertility and abundant natural resources Buru is still one of the 
least-known lands of Indonesia. Near its rock-bound west coast it culminates in 
the lofty Mount Lamandang, or Tomahu (8,540 feet), with which are connected 
other mountain masses falling gradually eastwards, but more elevated and precipi- 
tous along the southern than the northern side. The whole system is disposed 
in a semicircle with its convex side facing eastwards, and leaving in the centre of 
the island a large crater-like depression flooded b}' Lake Wakoholo, 1,900 feet 
above sea-level. The east coast is indented by the superb Bay of Kayeli, which is 
encircled by an extensive plain enclosed by an amphitheatre of hills. A geo- 
graphical dependence of Buru is the hilly and reef-fringed islet of Amblauw, off 
the south-east coast. 

The islets of Manipa, Eelang, and Bonoa, connecting Buru and Ceram, are 


mere geograpliical fragments of the latter. Amboyna with the Uliasser group 
(Oma or Haniku, Saparua, and Nusa Laut) all rest on the same submarine plateau 
as Ceram. Amboyna is formed as it were by two peninsulas, Hitu and Ley-timor, 
connected by a sandy isthmus little over a mile wide. Although regarded by 
"Wallace as of igneous origin, European residents deny the existence of any Tolcano 
in Amboyna. 

Ceram, or Serang, largest and loftiest of the Southern Moluccas, is covered by 
a dense forest on its western slope known as Howamul, or "Little Ceram." The 
island culminates in Mount Musaheli (9,710 feet) ; its preyailing formation appears 
to be granite. Its shores are encircled by fringing reefs, and the islands continu- 
ing the mainland south-eastwards are mainly formed of coralline Hmestones. 
Goram, one of the largest of these groups, consists of a rocky central nucleus, 
rormd which the polyps have constructed their coral reefs. But others, such as 
Manawoko and Matabello, arc composed exclusively of upheaved coral. 

The little Banda group presents a marked contrast to all the surrounding 
lands in its complete isolation, and the incessant activity of its Gunong Api, or 
"Bui-ning Mountain." Of the six islets of the cluster, three. Great Banda '(Lon- 
thoir), Banda Neira, and the Yolcano, are so disposed as to form the margin of an 
inner lake, probably representing an old crater of vast extent. Both Bandas are 
clothed with verdure to their summits, while the superb' cone of Api presents on 
its lower flanks a mere fringe of vegetation, and higher up nothing but heaps of 
rocks whitened with saline efflorescences. The craters emit constant wreaths of 
vapour, and all the Banda Islands are subject to frequent earthquakes. In this 
neighbourhood is best seen the curious phenomenon of the " Milky Sea," the water 
during the months from June to September appearing white at night and illumiaed 
by a strange phosphorescent glow. 

Lying between Indonesia and New Guinea the Southern Moluccas participate 
of both regions in their climate and animal and vegetable forms. But land mam- 
mals are almost completely absent, while on the other hand each island presents 
some original tj'pes. Noteworthy are the Marsupials (Ciiscus), allied to those of 
New Guinea ; the babirussa, which has reached Burn from Celebes, and especially 
the huge pythons which attack and devour man. The Moluccas are amazingly 
rich in birds, mostly resembling those of Papuasia. In Ceram alone Wallace 
enumerated fifty-five indigenous species, including a remarkable helmeted casso- 
wary five or six feet high, the wings being replaced by groups of " horny black 
spines like blunt porcupine quills." The surrounding waters also teem with every 
variety of marine life, and in the ports and creeks of AmbojTia alone Bleeker found 
no less than seven hundred and eighty species of fishes, nearly as many as occur in 
all the European seas and rivers. Amboyna also presents larger and more beautiful 
butterflies than ^ny other spot on the globe. Yet by a strange and inexplicable 
contrast the eastern part of Ceram, with all its wealth of vegetation, is extremely 
poor in animal forms. 

The "Alfurus," or uncivilised natives of the Southern Moluccas, are allied, not 
to the Indonesians of Celebes, Borneo, and Sumatra, but to the Papuans of New 


Guinea. Those of Burn, ab.surdly supposed by some to be the western home of 
the Eastern Polynesians, are of middle size, with deep brown complexion and huge 
" mop-heads." Most of their settlements are on the coast, where, as in Coram, the 
type has become largely modified by crossings with Malays and other immigrants. 
In Amboyna Hindu features are even said to occur, and here the language would 
seem to betray former Asiatic influences. 

Except in Ceram most of the Alf urus have discontinued head-hunting and 
their other ferocious practices. All believe in a Supreme Being, creator and pre- 
server of all things, great judge, rewarder of good and punisher of evil in this life 
and the nest. But he is honoured by no worshii?, prayers and incantations being 
reserved for the innumerable beneficent and malevolent spirits, who dwell in the 
rocks, the trees, the streams, and the wind. These are appeased by wizards and 
astrologers, who also heal maladies, make the crops prosper, and preserve mariners 
from the dangers of the deep. Marriages are exogamous, and the women as well 
as debtors are treated with remarkable kindness. In the interior Mohammedanism 
has hitherto failed to gain a footing, but on the coastlands its influence is predomi- 
nant, and steadily increasing with the ascendency' of the Malay intruders. On the 
other hand Christian missionaries from Amboyna have already bajjtized some 
thousands of Ceramese and other islanders. In some villages the Christians are 
in the majority, and on the coast of Ceram facing Amboyna all the natives are at 
least nominally Orang Sirani, or " N-azarenes." 

The general spread of Christianity is mainly the result of the early proselytis- 
ing zeal of the Portuguese, many traces of whose occupation still survive. In the 
first year of the seventeenth century the Dutch seized Amboyna and Banda, where 
they endeavoured to monopolise the trade in the famous spices " worth their weight 
in gold." They ordered the destruction of the nutmeg and clove forests every- 
where in their domain except Amboyna and Banda, and even here the number of 
plants was strictly limited by numerous decrees. For two hundred and fifty years 
Amsterdam was the only market in the world where nutmeg, cloves, and mace 
could be procured ; but this policy was followed by many evils, such as the depopu- 
lation of formerly flourishing islands, the spread of piracy, and the debasement of 
the natives condemned to forced labour on the plantations for half a year. All 
industries were sacrificed to the cultivation of the spice plants, and the monopoly 
itself became so burdensome and disastrous that it had at last to be abolished in 
1860. Since then the yield has been greatly reduced in Amboyna, but the Banda 
growers, favoured by the conditions of soil and climate, still compete successfully 
with those of other spice-growing lands. 

Amhoyua, the native Amhon, capital of the Eesidence of the Southern Moluccas, 
lies on the south side of the bay of like name at the foot of Mount Soj'a ; it 
comprises a central trading quarter and suburbs with broad shadj^ avenues 
stretching for some distance in various directions, with a total population of 
thirteen thousand. It is commanded by Fort Victoria, and is now a free port, 
where the largest vessels ride at anchor in ten or fifteen fathoms of water. 
Amboyna is the centre of the religious establishments for all the surrounding 






regions ; here resided Yalentijn, and here died Eumpliius, the pioneers of 
scientific exploration in Indonesia. 

The chief port in Burn oifers all the material advantages for a great centre of 
trade, but on this magnificent and ■well-sheltored harbour nothing is seen except 
the obscure village of Kaijcli, with a mixed population of about two thousand 

Fig. 98. — Poet of ^VxDOYN.t. 
Scale 1 : 80,000. 

Mussulmans, Christians, and Chinese. The shores of Ceram also present no centres 
of population beyond a few groups of cabins occupied h\ Malays, some Moham- 
medan and Christian Alfurus, and a few foreign traders. Of these groups, known 
as negerijcn, from the Hindu nagar, a town, the chief are Amahai, centre of the 
Dutch administration on the south side, and on the north Wahai, a fortified village 
with an extensive harbour. 

23 1 


The islet of Kilwaru, off the east point of Ceram and near the ring-shaped 
Gisscr, presents the aspect of a little " Malay Venice," where the pile-dwellings 
are so closely packed that the ground can nowhere be seen, and the whole island 
looks like a floating village. Lying on the only deep channel across the subma- 
rine banks of Ceram Laut, Kilwaru is a busy mart, the chief entrepot of the trade 
between Amboyna and New Guinea. 

East of Amboyna, the chief town of the Uliasser group is Sapania, in the 
island of the same name, near the shore of a good haven, and at the converging 
point of two routes which cross the island at its narrowest parts. But despite 

Fig. 99. — KiLWAEU. 
Scale 1 : 25,000. 

these natural advantages, Saparua has less than two thousand inhabitants, nearly 
all Christians. The surrounding plantations jdeld a larger quantity of cloves than 
Amboyna, though the crops are very precarious. A good harvest will exceed 
340,000 lbs. for the whole Amboyna group, while that of bad years will fall 
below 56,000 lbs. 

The fortified town of Bcnida, or Neira, in the island of like name, occupies one 
of the most picturesque positions in the Eastern Archipelago. It lies on the north 
side of Banda Bay, on the slopes of Mount Papenberg, amidst the loveliest nutmeg 
plantations in the world. The opposite island of Great Banda is almost covered 






■!NiVEPSlTY(if "'iNi 



with the same shmib, and M'ith others of larger growth planted for protection. 
'The light volcanic soil, the shade, and the natural moisture of the climate are all 
conditions most favourable for the nutmeg, which here grows almost spontane- 
ously, whereas in SingajDore, Pulo Pinang, and other places successful crops can 
be raised only by most careful cultivation. 

A fringe of cocoanut trees encircles the base of the neighbouring Grunong Api, 
which is inhabited by the descendants of immigrants from Buton. The islets of 

Fig. 100. — Banda Gkoup. 
Scale 1 : 115,000. 

Esstcr Greenwich 

250 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

Run and Eozengain are also occupied by small colonies of cultivators, descended 
for the most part from transported convicts. 

The residence of Amboyna is divided administratively into the four districts 
of Amboyna, Burn, the Uliasser group, Banda, and the three circumscriptions of 

The Noktherx Moluccas : Obi, B.\tjan, TinoK, Teenate, Halmahera, 


This northern group, of which Halmahera forms the centre, is completely 
enclosed on all sides by deep waters. On the west it is separated from Celebes by 


abj'sses of over a thousand fathoms ; on the north and north-west occur troughs of 
two thousand fathoms ; southwards, a chasm of fifteen hundred fathoms yawns 
between Obi and the Southern Moluccas ; lastly, towards the east, depths of five 
hundred fathoms, with a sill of over two hundred and fifty fathoms, mark the part- 
ing line between the insular world and the islands depending on Papuasia. The 
Northern Moluccas are mainly disposed longitudinally north and south, whereas 
the southern group runs east and west. The total area exceeds 6,000 square miles ; 
but with the exception of the so-called "Little Moluccas" (Ternate, Tidor, Mak- 
jan, Motir, Kayoa) none of the islands are thickly peoijled, while some even have 
no permanent residents at all. The two islands of Tifuri and Mayu, which depend 
politically on Ternate, may be included in this group, although rising in deep 
waters to the east of Minahassa. 

The term Molucos was originally restricted by the Portuguese to tJie " Little 
Moluccas " of modern geographers, but has gradually been extended to all the 
eastern islands producing spices. 

Igneous energy is far more active in the northern than in the southern group, 
and a whole range of active craters skirts the western edge of the archipelago. 
In the northern section of Batjan (Batchian) occur hot springs, and a gej'ser which, 
like those of Iceland, contains much silica. Farther north, beyond the basalt 
rocks of Kayoa (Kajoa) rises the Makjan volcano, which was partly blown away 
during the eruption of 1616. Motir also (1,020 feet) forms a burning mountain, 
which was still active down to the close of the last century. The southern por- 
tion of Tidor, a little farther north, consists of a perfectly regular cone, the 
highest in the Moluccas (5,720 feet), which emits vapours from time to time. Its 
neighbour, Ternate, somewhat lower and of less symmetrical form, is one of the 
most restless volcanoes in the whole of Indonesia ; from the Dutch occupation at 
the beginning of the seventeenth century down to 1862 no less than eighty-four 
eruptions were recorded ; the mountain is fissured in all directions, and vapours are 
constantly emitted from the seven craters opened on its flanks. Earthquakes are 
also frequent, and the town lying at its base has scarcely recovered from one 
disaster when it is overtaken by another. 

Farther north, the volcanic axis of the Little Moluccas strikes the projecting 
coast of Halmahera, and here also rise three eruptive cones visible from Ternate. 
In the same direction follow other centres of igneous activity, such as the Gunong 
Tarakan (Tafelberg), and Tolo, facing the island of Morotai (Mortai), whose scorioe 
forming barriers across the marine inlets have converted them into complete 
land-locked lakes. 

Halmahera, or the " Great Land," presents in its outlines a curious resemblance 
to Celebes, consisting, like that island, of four ' mountainous peninsulas rooted in 
a central nucleus, and all disposed in similar directions. The trachytic island of 
Morotai, with the adjacent clusters, which appear to have been formerly attached 
to the northern peninsula, also correspond to the Minahassa region of North 
Celebes, while the southern and south-eastern peninsulas are similarly prolonged 
by the islands of Damar and Gebe. 



Tlie Xorthern Moluccas, where tlic iiolitical ascendency is centred in tlie two 
volcanic islets of Tidor and Ternatc, are distinguished, even more than the southern 
group, by their i^eculiarly specialised local forms. Thus Morotai possesses charac- 
teristic birds unknown in Ilalmahera, from which it is separated only by an island- 
sluddcd strait twenty-four miles wide. The fauna, both of Morotai in the extreme 
north and of Damar in the extreme south, is much more allied to that of the remote 
Papuasia than the JMoluccas. Specially remarkable is the fauna of Batjan, in 

Fig. 101.— Ejipihes of Teen'ate issn Tidoe. 
Scale 1 : 20,0:0,000. 


taslj oFGreenwtcb 




of Tidor. 

of Batjan. 

Islands formerly 

divided between 

Temate and Tidor. 

whose spice forests is found the baboon-like cynopithecu.s, which here reaches its 
farthest eastern range. 

The dominant element in the Little Moluccas are the Malavs, who, after secur- 
ing a footing in Temate and Tidor, overran the whole archipelago. But inter- 
marrying. with the Alfuru women, their type has been variously modified. An- 
other intruding element are the Orang Scrani, that is, the Nazarenes or Christians, 
who are partly descended from Portuguese ancestors. But they have long forgot- 



ten, if not their origin, at least their language and even their Catholic faith ; they 
now speak Malay mixed with a few Portuguese words, and call themselves Protes- 
tants. Through crossings with the natives they have become as dark as the 
Papuans, and greatly resemble the Brazilian half-castes of the Amazons. The 
Orang Serani are almost the only natives of Indonesia who eat the " flying-fox," 
that huge bat which is at times seen suspended by hundreds from the branches of 
dead trees. 

The Alfurus, or aborigines, are now found chiefly in the central parts of the 
northern peninsula in Ilalmahera. Although many are as fair as the Malays, 

Pig. 102. — Teexate, Tidok, and Dadinoa Isthitos. 
Scale 1 : 600,000. 

E^sb oFG eenwch 


Wallace and others regard them as but slightly modified Papuans, with the 
coarse features, nearly aquiline nose, frizzly hair, and vivacity of the New Guinea 
natives. In other respects, and especially in their usages and social institutions, 
they resemble the Alfurus of Coram and Burn. 

The little island of Kayoa, north of Batjan, is occupied by a few hundred 
natives tributary to the Sultan of Ternate. The more fertile Makjan is also far 
more densely peopled ; in former times its importance made it a bone of contention 
between the rival sovereigns of Tidor and Ternate. Afterwards it passed succes- 
sively from the Spaniards to the Diitch, who ruined it by compelling the ruler of 
Ternate to destroy its clove plantations. 


Nearly all the Northern Moluccas are rliviclcd between the two sultanates of 

Tidor and Teruate, which are themselves for the most part now merged in the 



Dutch administrative division known as the Residence of Ternate. One of the 
most remarkable phenomena in the history of Indonesia is the extraordinary 
political importance acquired by these two insignificant islets. At the very time 
when the Italian republics of Venice, Pisa and Genoa were enjoying a marvellous 
prosperity, these eastern Malay communities were, under analogous conditions, 
acquiring vast colonial empires stretching far over the surrounding archipelagoes 
and continents. Trading settlements from Tidor and Ternate were founded in all 
the markets of Malaysia, and their ascendency was maintained as long as their 
operations were limited to trade. But decay set in as soon as their sultans became 
rich potentates surrounded by thousands of slaves, levying heavy tribute and 
plundering the surrounding regions' with their armies of mercenaries and piratic 

At present these sultans retain little beyond an empty title. The so-called 

Fig. lOi. — Density of the Population in Dutch Indonesia. 
Scale 1 : 45 noo.OOO. 


Iiihabit;mt8 to the Square Mile. 

□ B g H 

to 10. 10 to 20. 20 to 100. 100 to 300. 

Each square represents a population of 100,000. 

— ^-^— — ^— 600 Miles. 

" kingdom " of Tidor comprises the central part of Ilalmahera with its two eastern 
peninsulas, besides the western shores of New Guinea with the adjacent islands. 
To Ternate are nominally assigned the northern peninsula of Ilalmahera with 
more than half of the south, the Sula Archipelago and about one-third of Celebes. 
According to the local -chronicles a treaty of peace was concluded in 1322 
between the Molucca States, in virtue of which the first rank was awarded to the 
Kolano of JailoUo (Jilolo) in Ilalmahera ; but in 1380 the Sultan of Ternate 
acquired the ascendency under the title of Kolano Maloko, or " Prince of the 
Moluccas." Since that time the relations between the various local states has been 
modified by the wars between the Portuguese and Sj^aniards, and by the arrival of 
the Dutch. At present the Jailollo prince is a mere vassal of Ternate, which in 
its turn is fain to recognise the suzerainty of Holland. In 1879 all slaves were 
oiBcially declared free throughout the whole of these territories. 



The capital of Tidor is a mere village on the west side of the island ; but 
Ternate is a real tewn, although it has suffered much since the opening of the 
ports of Celebes to free trade. It is doubtless itsslf also a free port, but it has lost 
many of its Chinese, Bugi, and Arab traders, and has ceased to be the chief market 
for the feathers of the bird of paradise. The ruins of buildings overthrown by 
the earthquakes are scattered amid the modern dwellings, and the old Portuguese 
and Dutch forts have recently had to be rebuilt. Behind every stone houte is a 
second structure in light wood where the sleeping apartments are contained, and 
where little risk is run in case of any sudden shock. The slopes of the neigh- 
bouring volcano are covered with orchards, which yield the finest durians, mangoes, 
and other fruits. 

East of Ternate is developed the deep inlet of Dadinga Bay, by which the 
northern peninsula of Halmahera is nearly severed from the rest of the island. 
The connecting isthmus is commanded at its narrowest part bj' Fort Dadinga, the 

Fig-. lOJ. — PoLTTicAL Dmsioss OF Indonesh. 
Scile 1 : .511,000 000. 

strongest strategic point in the whole island, and the only place where the Dutch 
keep a garrison. Here the isthmus is scarcely two miles across, and although the 
route pre.'ients some difficulties, praus can be transported in three days from bay to 
bay, thereby saving a detour of 240 miles. North of Dadinga Bay follows that of 
Jailollo, formerly a flourishing capital which for a time gave an alternative name 
to Halmahera, now a mere hamlet surrounded by old cultivated tracts now over- 
grown with coarse grass and scrub. These regions, so popular and flourishing in 
mediaaval times, have been almost entirely depopulated by slavery and monopolies. 
Of the other villages in Halmahera the best known is Galela, which lies on an 
inlet in the north-east of the northern peninsula over against the island of 
Morotai. The Alfurus of the surrounding district, the most skilful and indus- 
trious peasantry in the whole island, are usually known as Galelas from the name 
of this place. Tabcllo, which lies farther south, and which is defended by 
numerous reefs and islets of difiicult access, was long dreaded as a dangerous nest 



of corsairs. In 1837 the Diitcli authorities removed four hundred of these pirates 
to the island of Saleyer, where they received allotments of land to cultivate. 

The large island of Morotai, which forms the north-east extremity of the 
Moluccas and of the whole of Indonesia, became entirely depopulated in conse- 
quence of the constant incursions of the corsairs. Thus the vast colonial empire 
of Holland, comprising over five hundred islands and too extensive for all its 
natural resources to be developed, terminates towards the Pacific Ocean in lands 
which were formerly thickly inhabited, but which are at present deserted. As 
shown by the statistical charts, Java, Madura, Bali, and Lombok are the only 
islands where the population is grouped in considerable masses. The eastern 
members of the Sunda group are far more sparsely occupied, while the other 
regions, such as Borneo, Celebes and the Moluccas, are relatively speaking almost 

In the Api^endix will be found a table of the Dutch possessions, with their 
administrative divisions, areas, and populations. 



HE term Magellania, given to the Philippine Archipelago in honour 
of its illustrious discoverer, has shared the fate of other denomina- 
tions, such as the Western Isles and the Archipelago of Saint 
Lazarus, all of which have yielded to the name conferred on this 
group by Lopez de Villalobos to flatter his master, Philip II. All 
these islands are also in a general way designated as the Spanish Indies, rivalling 
as the)' do the Dutch East Indies in extent, picturesque beauty, and the infinite 
variety of their natural resources. Luzon, the largest member of the group, has 
alone an area of 40,000 square miles ; Mindanao, next in size, is very nearly as 
extensive; five others are each over 10,000 square miles in extent, while round 
about these larger masses is scattered a vast labyrinth of no less than two thousand 
satellites of aU sizes. 

Luzon and its neighbours scarcely yield to Java, Sumatra or Celebes, in the 
splendour of their tropical landscapes. Perhaps they even offer greater variety 
from season to season, thanks to the more marked alternation of the monsoons, 
due to their greater distance from the equator. The vegetation of the seaboard, 
which comprises the same or corresponding species, is fully as dense and leafy as 
that of Indonesia ; the shores are everywhere deeply indented by bays and inlets; 
island-studded lakes reflect the surrounding woodlands ; the horizon is bounded 
by lofty crests and cones wrapped in vapours. The inhabitants also, whether 
aborigines, Malays, Chinese, or half-castes of every shade, present many curious 
ethnological studies, and appear on the whole to offer more originality than their 
kindred of Dutch Indonesia. The action of their Spanish rulers, however violent 
at times, has weighed less oppressively on the natives, whose primitive character 
has consequently been less profoundly modified than in the Sunda Islands. Some 
members of the vast archipelago, as well as the more remote districts in the larger 
islands lying beyond direct Spanish control, have even remained unexplored, wtile 
even the regions directly administered by Europeans are still but imperfectly 
known. No methodic and detailed study of the Philippines has yet been made ; 
the maps and charts are extremely defective, except for the seaboard, in the 
survey of which the leading maritime nations have co-operated. The oflicial 
returns themselves, being left to careless functionaries and parish priests, too 
often give superficial and even contradictory results, while for the uncivilised 

K 2 



natives not even approximate estimates are available. Nevertheless the present 
population may be fixed at not less than seven millions, or more than nine 
millions, in a total area of about 118,000 square miles. 

Although forming a group quite distinct from Indone.sia, from which they are 
separated by two marine abysses, one nearly two thousand five hundred, the other 

over two thousand five hun- 

Fig. lOB.^TiiE THREE Isthmuses of Indonesia and the 

Scale 1 : 18,000,000. 

dred fathoms deep, the Philip- 
pines are connected with the 
southern lands by three long- 
ridges, partly rising above 
the surface, partly covered 
by shallow water. Of these 
three isthmuses the north- 
western is the regular 
and best develoj)ed, being 
constituted for over half its 
extent by the long narrow 
island of Paragua. Between 
Mindoro and the north-west 
point of Borneo the deepest 
parts of the sill limited by 
Balabac and Bangney do not 
average more than twenty- 
five fathoms. Balabac Strait 
between Paragua and Borneo 
is occupied by reefs resem- 
bling in outline the alluvial 
islands of a delta, and formed 
under the influence of the 
marine current which, during 
the south-west monsoon, sets 
strongly towards the Sulu Sea. 
The second isthmus is formed 
by the Sulu Archipelago, 
which connects the north-east 
^ ^ point of Borneo with the 

' ' ^ ^J' western extremity of Min- 

to 1,000 l,noO to 2.000 2 000 Fathoms •' 

Fathoms. Fathoms. and upwards, dunuo. But here the shallow 

'""'"""'■ channel, through which the 

deep waters of the Sulu Sea communicate with the still deeper Celebes Sea, is 
traversed by a system of alternating currents over two hundred and fifty fathoms 
in depth. Lastly, east of the nearly circular trough of the Celebes Sea the penin- 
sula of Minahassa, with the Sanguir Archipelago and other islands, develop a third 
isthmus sweeping round to the southernmost point of Mindanao. This connecting 


ridge is also broken b}' numerous openings, the broiidcst and deepest of wlaich 
lies off the coast of Mindanao. As shown by the submarine explorations of the 
Challenijer, the two basins enclosed between the Philijipines and Borneo resemble 
the Mediterranean in the temperature of their lower depths. The cold waters of 
the oceanic depths are unable to penetrate across the intervening isthmuses into 
these inland seas, where the thermometer nowhere records less than 50^ F. 

These three lines of partly emerged, partly submarine, ridges, stretching from 
Indonesia towards the Philippines, continue their main axis in the interior of this 
archipelago, and constitute a great part of its relief. Mindanao, least kno\^n of 
the whole group, although one of the most remarkable for its volcanic phenomena, 
is formed, at least in the west and centre, by the prolongation of the two eastern 
ridges, indicated seaward by the Sulu and Sanguir Archipelagoes. The Sulu axis, 
whose normal direction is south-west and north-east, comprises all the western 
peninsula of Mindanao, while the Sanguir axis, running south and north, strikes 
the southern point of the same I'egion at the Saragani volcano. Beyond this 
point it first continues its northerly trend and then gradually sweeps round to the 
west. East of this mountain range another parallel chain occupies all the eastern 
section of Mindanao bordering on the Pacific Ocean. 

A broad survey of the whole orographic system shows in the same way that, 
from the southern point of Mindanao to the northern extremity of Luzon, the relief 
of all the islands is disposed in a line with or parallel to the southern isthmuses. 
Thus the coast range of the east side of Mindanao is continued north-west in a 
graceful curve through the islands of Leyte, Masbate, Ticao, and Burias ; in the 
east is developed a parallel curve formed by the island of Samar, the Camarines 
peninsula in Luzon, and the Isla del Polillo. On the other hand the islands of 
Bohol, Cebu, Negros, and Panay are disposed in a line with or parallel to the 
Sulu Archipelago, while Miudoro and the main section of Luzon form the north- 
eastern extension of Paragua and Borneo. In many places volcanic or other 
masses mark the points of intersection, and it is noteworthy that in Luzon, most 
rugged of the Philippines, all the cordilleras converge like the ribs of a dome in 
the culminating crest of Caraballo. Xorthof the Philippines the mountain ranges, 
interrupted by broad straits, are continued through Formosa and the Liu-Kieu 
group towards Japan. 

The whole surface of the Philippines is essentially mountainous, the only plains 
that occur being the aUuvial districts at the river mouths, and the spaces left at the 
intersection of the ranges. Most of the surface appears to be formed of old rocks, 
especially schists, and, in the north of Luzon, granites. Extensive coal-fields are 
found in the central islands, especially Cebu and Negros, and in many places these 
carboniferous beds seem to have been buried under more lecont lavas. Later 
Kmestones have also been developed by the coral-builders round all the seaboard, 
and there is clear evidence that along extensive stretches of the coastline these 
formations have been upheaved to a considerable height above sea-level. They 
form at some points broad horizontal tables round the headlands, and here arc 
found shells and other marine remains belonging to the same species still living in 


the surrounding waters. But about the Gulf of Davao, in South Mindanao, the 
contrary movement of subsidence has taken place, as shown by the dead or dying 
forests invaded by the sea. 

The Philippines abound in minerals. The natives collect gold in the alluvia 
of all the islands, but especially in the province of Benguet, Central Luzon, and 
about the north-east point of Surigao, in Mindanao. Copper is common in the 
Lepanto hills bordering on the same central district of Luzon, where from time 
immemorial the natives have extracted the ore and wrought it into implements 
and ornaments. The blacksmiths also have at hand an excellent iron ore for their 
arms and instruments. Cebu is said to contain lead-glance yielding nearly half of 
its weight in pure metal, while the solfataras of many extinct volcanoes have 
formed inexhaustible deposits of sulphur. 

Extinct or still active craters are relatively as numerous in the Philippines as 
in the Eastern Archipelago, and all seem disposed in regular axes coinciding with 
those of the islands themselves. In the islet of Dumaran, at the north-east end 
of Paragua, rise the two active cones of Alivancia and Talaraquin, and Sulu has 
also its burning mountain, which, however, appears to have been quiescent since 
the eruption of 1641. Sarangani, or Sangil, at the southern extremity of Min- 
danao, hasalso been at rest since the seventeenth century. On the range running 
thence northwards stands the Apo volcano, which was ascended by Montano in 
1880, and found to be the highest in the Philij^pines (10,-310 feet). The islet of 
Camiguin, belonging to the same coast range, forms another igneous cone, which 
was the scene of a violent outburst in 1871. 

West of Apo follow in the direction from south to north several cones, such as 
Sugut (Cottabato), Macaturin, and Malindang, all probably extinct, but apparently 
connected through the western islands with the Taal volcano in Luzon. Along this 
line occiirs the still active Malaspina or Canloon, in the northern part of Negros 
(9,0-40 feet). 

The eastern coast range in Mindanao, consisting mainly of basalts, appears to 
contain no volcano, unless the large and deep lake Mainit, near the extreme head- 
land of Surigao, is to be regarded as an old crater. The coast range is continued 
northwards through the island of Leyte, where the argillaceous soil, near the 
wooded crater of an extinct cone, yields about one-fourth of pure sulphur. 

But the igneous energy of the Philippines is concentrated mainly in Luzon, 
where the superb Bulusan volcano stands at the southernmost extremity connected 
by a narrow isthmus with the peninsula of Camarines. Farther north follow the 
craterless Poedal, and on the Gulf of Albay, the Albay, or Maj'on volcano, the 
most dreaded as well as one of the highest (9,000 feet ?) in the whole archipelago. 
Mayon, which is of almost perfectly regular form, covers at its base a circuit of 
over eighty square miles, its flanks are clothed with forests to a height of about 
two thousand feet, but higher up little is visible except deposits of scoria;, which 
are very difficult to scale. Nevertheless, both Jagor and Von Drasche reached the 
summit, the latter in 1876, when no trace could be detected of a crater properly 
so called During its frequent eruptions Mayon ejects little lava but prodigious 







quantities of ashes cover the surrounding districts fur and wide. In 1S14 the 
town of Daraga was buried and the ejected matter was wafted as far as Manilla, 
two hundred miles distant. 

Nazaraga (4,445 feet), a craterless dolorite cone, and JIalinao, which appears to 
have been quiescent for ages, continue the igneous chain northwards to Iraga, the 
scene of a disturbance in 1641, when the little Lake Buhi was formed by a sudden 

Pig. 107. — SoTJTHEKN Part of Luzon. 
Scale 1 : I,5(ju,000. 

100 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

landslip. East of this lake the Tihi valley presents the most remarkable group of 
thermal, sulphurous, and silicious springs in the whole archipelago. They are 
copious enough to develop a rivulet of hot water, which the people of the neigh- 
bourhood utilise for culinary purposes. The springs precipitate considerable 
quantities of silica, covering the surface with dazzling white incrustations, and one 
jet of water and vapour has a temperature of no less than 226" F. 

At the neck of the Caramuan peninsula stands the broad-based Ysarog (Isarog), 



whose slopes occupy the whole space between the buys of San Miguel aud Lagonoy, 
terminating in a regular cone, 6,450 feet high. Ysarog has been quiescent through- 
out modern times, and the only sign of former energy appears to be a spring of 
carbonic acid near the summit. 

The northern part of the Camarines peninsidais dominated by the two volcanic 
masses of Colasi and Labo (Tetas de Polantuna), which, however, have no craters, 
and apparently have been at rest since prehistoric times. Majayjay (6,500 feet) 
and San Cristobal (7,660 feet), south-east from Manilla, are also extinct. But west 
of them stands the volcano of Taal, which, although only 780 feet high, is one of 
the most remarkable in the Philippines. It occupies, with two other lesser cones, 

rig. lOS.— Centeal Past or Luzon. 
Scale 1 : ?,600 000. 



Fast oF G 

an islet in the middle of Lake Bombon, which is separated from the China 
Sea by a low narrow isthmus. Taal, whose flanks are furrowed by deep gorges, 
terminates in an enormous crater, out of all prof)ortion with its size. "Purgatory," 
as the natives call this crater, has a circumference of over 4,300 yards, and contains 
in its depths secondary craters, numerous crevasses emitting vapours, and two blue 
lakelets charged with sulphuric and hydrochloric acids in the proportion of over 
six per cent. Formerlj' the two other volcanoes in the island — the Great and 
Little Binintiang — ejected ashes alternately, and the bed of the lake itself was 
occasionally in a state of erujition ; but since 1749 all the underground forces 
have been centred in Mount Taal, which casts up showers of pidverised rock, but 



no lavas. The last outburst in IHHo destroyed all traces of vegetation in the 

Bombon, wbicli is nearly 640 feet deep, was probably a vast crater, of whicli 
the islet with its three volcanoes is merely the central cone, while the walls of tufa, 
over 600 feet high, encircling the north and east shores of the lake, arc the remains 

Fig. 109.— Lake Bombon. 
Scale I : 300,000. 



i^- { 

Lasb cF bf-eenwich 


of the original rim of the crater. But, like that of the island of Saint Paul, this 
crater was formerly open towards the sea, as shown by the present intervening barrier, 
which is entirely composed of eruptive scorias. The water of the old inlet, thus 
converted into a lake, is still somewhat saline, although constantly renewed by rain 
water, and although the overflow is carried off by an emissary running south-west 
to the coast. The marine fauna inhabiting the lake has gradually adapted itself 


to its modified environment. The great Lake Bay, or the Laguna, south-east of 
Manilla, was also probably an ancient marine gulf cut off from the sea by the 
narrow isthmus of recent formation on which stands the capital of the Philippines. 
According to Semper, the Laguna is inhabited by the shark and another sea-fish 
found in the neighbouring marine waters. The peninsulas and islets in the 
northern part of the Laguna, as well as the island of Corregidor, at the entrance of 
Manilla Bay, consist of igneous rocks, but all have been quiescent throughout the 
historic period. 

The contradictory statements of Spanish writers leave it doubtful whether any 
outbursts occurred in the seventeenth century at Mount Aringay, or Santo-Tomas 
(7,530 feet), which rises above the east side of Lingayen Bay. Data, lying to the 
north-east of Aringay, is certainly quiescent, although, like several other cones in 
this group, it is encircled by thermal springs and solfataras. No other volcano 
occurs between this district and the northern extremity of Luzon, where Cagud 
(3,920 feet), at the terminal headland, constantly emits wreaths of smoke. 
Beyond this point the igneous system is continued under the sea to the island of 
Camiguin (2,415 feet), which contains a productive solfatara. In the neighbour- 
ing Babuyan, an active volcano rose above the surface in 1856 ; four years later it 
had attained a height of nearlj^ 700 feet, and since then has continued to grow, its 
present elevation apparently being about 800 feet. The reefs of Dedica, on which 
the new volcano stands, would themselves appear to be the remains of an old 
burning mountain. In this vast igneous chain, which extends from Sangil for 
about 1,000 miles northwards, the last member is Babuyan Claro, whose fiery cone, 
over 3,000 feet high, lights up at night the dangerous waters of the Sea of Formosa. 
This great island is connected with the Philippines through the reefs and islets of 
the intervening Batanes (Bashee) Archipelago. 

Few regions are more subject to undergroimd disturbances than the Philippines. 
Despite the numerous "safety-valves" which, according to certain theories, are 
offered by the active volcanoes to the subterranean forces, this archipelago ma.y be 
said to be in a continual state of tremor. The seismographs of the Manilla Obser- 
vatory are constantly vibrating ; the crust of the earth is incessantly quivering 
with undulations, normally running in the direction from west to east, and few 
years pass without some disaster caused by these oscillations. The city of Manilla 
has been frequently wasted by such convulsions, and most of its public buildings 
and European houses built of stone were levelled to the ground by that of 1863, the 
most terrible on record. The no less violent shock of 1880 was far less disastrous, 
the edifices having in the interval been constructed on u plan better able to resist 
the effects of these oscillations. 

During the earthquake of 1880 Taal and several other volcanoes were in full 
eruption, and a submarine crater, between the island of Polillo and the east coast 
of Luzon, rose above the surface ; but the following year this heap of ashes had 
entirelj- disappeared, washed away by the waves. 

The disposition of the mountain ranges in parallel chains has afforded space for 
the development of some considerable streams both in Luzon and Mindanao. The 



most copious is the Cagaj'an, or Rio Grande, which after a course of over 200 miles 
between two Cordilleras in Luzon enters the sea through a broad estuary facing 
the island of Camiguin. The Agno, which reaches the coast on the south side of 
Lingayen Bay, receives the waters and auriferous sands of the Benguet Cirque, a 
limestone amphitheatre, supposed by some to represent an ancient uj)heaved atoll. 
The Pampangan, which traverses the vast plain of like name, after receiving the 

Fig. 110.— Earthquake of 1S80. 

Scale I : fi.SOO.OOO. 

C. Bo/saa/o/* 

/s/n a/' M/nJorv 

Ea^b oF Greenwich 

overflow of several lakes joins the sea on the north side of Manilla Bay, where it 
has developed a broad delta projecting beyond the old coast-line. The Pasig, 
which falls into the same bay, is only 12 miles long; but like the Russian Neva 
acquires great importance as the emissary of the Laguna, and because Manilla, 
capital of the Philippines, stands upon its banks; small, flat-boltomed steamers 
ply on the Pasig, between the lake and the sea. 

In Mindanao the largest river is the Agusan or Butuan, which is navigable for over 


60 miles from its mouth. Another stream, also known as the Rio Grande, is said 
to rise in Lake Magindanao, in the centre of the island, flowing thence south-west 
and north-east to lUuna Bay in the Celebes Sea. 

Ci.i.MATK, Flora, Fauna of the Philippixes. 

The climate of the Philippines is essentially maritime and trojiical ; in other 
words, the temperature, normally very high, oscillates within verj' narrow limits. 
Thus the heat, varj'ing little from month to month, is useless to distinguish season 
from season, and the year, as in Indonesia, is divided rather by the alternating- 
wet and dry monsoons.* The polar current from the north-east prevails from 
October to April, the moist south-west monsoon for the rest of the year. The 
change of the trade winds is always dreaded, being often attended bj' sudden 
bagnios or typhoons, which rise in the Pacitio, and sweep across the archipelago to 
the north of Mindanao, wrecking vessels by the dozen, demolishing villages, 
destroying thousands of lives, and spreading ruin far and wide. The typhoon 
that struck Manilla in 1882, the most terrific on record, travelled at the prodigious 
velocity of 140 miles per hour. At present a submarine cable communicating 
with Hong-Kong signals the approach of these storms, thereby greatly diminishing 
their disastrous eifects. 

Lying between Indonesia and Formosa, the Philippines present in their flora 
and fauna a natural transition between these two regions ; nevertheless they also 
possess a number of characteristic species, which in some cases are even confined 
to a single island. Mindanao, the least-known region of the archipelago, appears 
to be also the richest in special vegetable forms. The sixtj- species of large trees 
in its forests, yielding valuable timbers for ship-building, cabinet-work or carving, 
include a myrtacea {XantJiostcmum vcnlugonianum), an almost incorruptible wood 
whose range extends to Australia. The halete, or banyan, is very common through- 
out the archipelago, where it often attains enormous dimensions. Palms also are 
numerous, while the cinnamon, clove, and pepper grow wild in the southern forests. 
The tea plant has been discovered in Luzon, and is now cxiltivated in the botanic 
gardens with good results. In 1882 botanists had alreadj' recognised 1,163 
genera and 4,583 species of plants in the archipelago. 

No carnivorous animals occur except the ngiao, a species of wild cat, although 
the natives speak of a tiger or leopard in Paragua. Amongst the other mammals 
are the wild boar, dangerous in some districts, two sf)ecies of antelope, several 
varieties of the deer family, the Macacus cynomolgns and other apes. Birds are 
very nimierous, and the gallinaceae especially are represented by some siiperb 
foims, such as the labuijo and bulicsigay. The neighbouring seas abound in animal 
organisms of all kinds, and some of the rivers team with fish. Amongst these 
is the curious dalag, or snake-head {Ophiocfphalus), furnished with water-pouches 
on either side of the head, which enable it to remain long out of its natural 

* Mean annual temperature of Manilla from 1870 to 1880, 82' F. ; highest (September), 97° ; lowest 
(February), o9°; rainfall about 100 inehes. 





element ; it is met browsing far from the streams, and even climbing up tbe stems 
of palm-trees. All the venomous orders of snakes are rej^resented in the local 
fauna, and crocodiles grow to an enormous size, some having been met about 
30 feet long, at least according to De la Gironniere. 


The aborigines, graduallj' driven back or exterminated by the intruding 
JIalays, have disappeared altogether from some of the islands, and in the others 
are now met only in scattered tribal or family groups. The full-blood Aetas 
(Atas, Itas), as these Negritoes, or " Little Negroes," are collectively called, do 
not number at present more than twenty thousand in the whole archipelago ; but 
traces of Negrito blood may be detected in large sections of the population, which 
presents everj' shade of transition in physical appearance, culture, and usages, 
between the Negrito and Malaji elements. The pure blacks are most nirmerous in 
the island of Negros, but they are also found in all the other islands, excej)t the 
archipelagoes north of Luzon, and apparently Samar, Leyte, Bohol, and Sulu. 

The Negritoes fully deserve their name, for the average height is under five 
feet. The head is relatively large, with bright eyes, high forehead, abundant 
frizzly and at times almost woolly hair, slender extremities, calf almost absent, 
and great toe often standing wide apart. The wrinkles of the face combined with 
their projecting jaws give them at times quite a simian aspect. The Aetas speak 
Malay in their intercourse with their more civilised neighbours, but amongst 
themselves they use words of unknown origin, supposed to be derived from the 
primitive language which was still current in the seventeenth century. It 
appears, however, that many of their tribes must have been subject to Malay 
influences from very remote times, for the dialects spoken in some districts 
undoubtedly belong to the Malayo-Polynesian family, although the Aetas them- 
selves are sprung from a totally different ethnical stock. 

Most of the tribes practise tattooing ; circumcision is also very general, and in 
some parts the women artificiallj' deform the skulls of their children. Except in the 
vicinity of populous districts little clothing is worn beyond a loin-cloth hy the men, 
and a short skirt by the women. In some places they build huts of branches and 
foliage, and even pile-dwellings like those of the Malays ; but elsewhere their only 
protection from the inclemency of the weather are frail screens of pahn-leaves, 
which are placed against the .sun, wind, or rain. In the provinces where they are 
gradually becoming civilised, they clear and till the land, raise poultry and pigs, 
and enter into trading relations with the Malays. But being unable to reckon 
beyond four and five, they are easily cheated, and they have evidently a profound 
sense of their own inferiority, reserving the term irio, or " men," to the dominant 

Apart from the Negritoes, the Chinese settlers, the Europeans and half-castes, 
the entire population, at least north of Mindanao, is of Malay origin and speech. 
At some unknown, but certainly very remote epoch, the Malay ancestors of the 


present inhabitants effected a pcrinaueut footing in the archipelago. The term 

Fio-. 111.— Gkotjp of Negkitoes. 


balunyay, or boat, still applied to the villages, recalls the time when these mariners, 



encamping on tlie beach, continued to lead much the same lives as when scouring 

the high seas in their praus. As was the case with the sampans or junks of the 

more recent Chinese settlers, every balangay became the cradle of a Malay colony. 

In general the Philippine Malays resemble those of Indonesia, except that in 

Fig. 112.— Chief IxuABiTAXTs of the Philippixes. 
Scale 1 : 12,000,000. 

Vicols. Visaynsand Ilocanos, Zambalas and C.gavanes. 

jviuureu. Pagasinsnes, 

™ Qnn] E3 573 [Ti 

''"K^ilt' «---" nayaks. Ke^i.oes. Chinese. 

some places, and especially Luzon, a slight transition is presented towards tlie 
Chinese t^^.e. Thus the oblique eyes, rare amongst the southern Malavs is on 
the contrary a distinctive feature of the northern Malays. Independently" of then- 
special local characteristics and dialects, all are broadly grouped in thr;e classes 


according to their religion and pursuits. Those who have accepted the authority 
of the whites and the ministrations of the Catholic clergy are called Iiidios, or 
" Indians," and this class is gradually merging in a common nationality. 
of the south, who remain followers of the Prophet, are collectively knowu as 
Moros, or " Moors ; " lastly, the tribes that have maintained their independence, or 
submit impatiently to the foreign yoke and still practise their old pagan rites, 
form the class of Ixfieles, or " Infidels." 

Of the Indios the most civilised are the Tagals (Ta-Gala), who number 
1,500,000, and are steadily increasing, less by the excess of births over deaths than 
b^' the gradual assimilation of the surrounding tribal groups. The Tagal domain, 
which comprises all the central parts of Luzon, is slowly encroaching on all the 
other populations of the island. Thus in the north it has already absorbed the 
territory of the Pampangos and Pangasinanes, in the north-east that of the Aetas, 
in the south-east that of the Vicols, while the islands of Mindoro and Marinduque 
have also become " Tagalised." The Tagals are met everywhere along the sea- 
board, and are in fact the chief pioneers of European culture throughout the arclii- 
pelago. Be.sides them there are other groups of Indios, even in Luzon, such as the 
Ilocos or Ilocanos on the west coast north of Lingayen Bay, and the Ibanags or 
(Jagayanes in the extreme north and neighbouring islands. 

The Vicols, or Bicols, who occujiy the Camarines peninsula, with the islands of 
Catanduanes, Burias, Ticao, and half of Masbate, greatly resemble the Tagals, and 
like them were already somewhat civilised before the arrival of the Spaniards. 
They number at least 400,000, including the Cimarrones and a few other groups 
who still keep aloof in the more inaccessible hilly districts. The third great 
ethnical division of the Indios are the Visayas, or Bisayas, who are estimated at 
2,500,000, and who give their name to the cluster of islands comprised between 
Luzon and Mindanao. They have also formed several settlements on the coast of 
Mindanao itself, and to the same division belong the inhabitants of the Calamianes 
Islands and of Paragua, although their darker colour and wavy hair betray evident 
traces of Negrito blood. The Visayas had formerly the habit of " painting them- 
selves with fire," whence the term Pintados applied to them by the Spaniards. 
But since their submission and acceptance of Christianity, they have discontinued 
this practice, as well as that of head-hunting, formerly universal. 

The " Moors," who occupy the Sulu Archipelago and the southern shores of 
Mindanao, comprise, like the Indios, a considerable number of distinct tribes or 
nations, united by the common ties of their Mohammedan faith and social usages. 
Amongst them are groups resembling the Borneau Dayaks, the Bayos of Celebes, 
and other Malayan peoples. The aristocratic families are Arabs, or else from Bor- 
neo or Ternate, while traces of crossings with the Chinese and Spanish renegades 
may also be detected. The roving habits of these corsairs, who were continually 
carrying off the women from all the surrounding regions, have made the Moors 
one of the most mixed populations in the extreme East. 

Their essentially feudal institutions caused the whole social organization to rest 
on piracy. By the side of the sultans were their almost equally powerful vassals. 



the dafu, each of whom, with the reservation of the homage due to his suzerain, 
became projjrietor of the hmds conquered and wealth plundered by his retainers. 
The tao maraliai/, or " good men," that is, the free warriors, accompanied them on 
their predatory expeditions, while the sacopo, or lack-land class, were reduced to a 
state of serfdom. Like the Norman knights they issued forth in search of adven- 
ture, to do battle against the infidel in the name of the true faith, or to acquire 
renown by carrying off women, slaves, and treasure. In the early years of the 

Fig. 11.3. — Ifuoao 

sixteenth century they were beginning to overrun the Philippme Archipelago, 
and but for the intervention of the Spaniards there can be no doubt that the 
Tagals -woidd at present be Mohammedans. Piracy in these waters was not 
entirely destroyed till the latter half of the present century by the Spanish occu- 
pation of the Mindanao seaboard and the Sulu Archipelago. 

The pagan populations, often confounded by the Spaniards under the general 
name of Igorrotcs, still form a considerable section of the inhabitants both in Luzon 
and Mindanao. The Igorrotes, properly so called, dwell cast of the Ilocos, in the 

VOL. xiv, .s 


Eeiiguet Valley and surrounding- liilly districts. North of tliom are the Tingui- 
anes, whose Christianity is limited to the possession of crucifixes used as talismans ; 
eastwards the upper Cagayan basin is held by the Ilongotes, If ugaos, Catalanganes, 
Irayas, and other pagan tribes. The Tingiiianes, whose complexion is almost 
white, are regarded by most observers as half-castes of Chinese origin, whereas the 
Igorrotes appear to be Tagals, who have hitherto preserved their primitive religion 
and usages. They believe in a sujjreme God, and in other deities in whom are 
personified the phenomena of nature. To these they offer sacrifices, although 
their chief worship is that of their aiiifos, or ancestors, whose souls rustle in the 
foliage of the sacred tree planted at the entrance of every village. These anitos 
also appear at times in the form of animals, and in many parts of Luzon, as in 
Celebes, the fish ponds are stocked with eels which are tended by the natives with 
filial piety. 

Strict laws of solidarity bind together the family group, and all outrages must be 
avenged by death ; hence the hereditary feuds, and the prevalence of head-hunting 
amongst these tribes. The Ifugaos use the lasso to seize the passing foe and drag 
him suddenly under the sharp knife. Amongst the Igorrotes certain practices 
survive pointing at former Brahmanical influences, and the very term dicata, 
applied to the national deities, is of Hindu origin. 

In Mindanao, the " Infidels " comjjrise numerous communities, which are often 
grouped by the whites under the collective name of Jlanobos. But this term 
should properly be restricted to the natives of the north-east, who occupy the 
Agusau basin and the Surigao peninsula. Some of those dwelling near the coast 
have been conquered and converted by the Spaniards, others in the interior present 
the Malay type of the Yisayans more or less modified by Negrito crossings. But 
most of the tribes appear to be of the Indonesian stock, which is closely allied to 
the eastern Polynesian, and characterized by high stature, fair complexion, and 
well-proportioned figures. The lobe of the ear is usually pierced for the introduc- 
tion of bone and other ornaments ; the teeth of the young men are filed according 
to a different pattern for every clan ; the heads of the children are artificially de- 
formed in many communities, and various systems of tattooing prevail amongst the 
different tribes. 

The expres.sion "Land of Terror," ajiplied by Montano to the eastern regions 
of Mindanao, might with equal truth be extended to nearly the whole island. 
When the Manobos, led by their high priest with his divine talisman, have suc- 
ceeded in sui'pi'ising their sleeping enemies, they slaughter all the men and carry 
away the women and children into slavery. After the victory the high priest 
opens the breast of the victim with the sacred knife, plunges the talisman in the 
flowing blood, and eats the heart or liver raw. The Maudayas, who slay for 
honour, have a special term, hagani, to designate the hero who has cut at least 
fifty heads, and who has alone the privilege of wearing a scarlet turban. Yast 
territories have been transformed to solitudes by this incessant intertribal war- 

Of foreigners settled in the Philippines the most numerous are the Chinese. 


From time immemorial their colonies have fringed the seaboard, aud in uearlj' all 
the tribes traces may be detected of Chinese crossings. According to the imperial 
annals, the native princes sent envoys aud tribnte to the " Children of Heaven," 
and objects of Chinese workmanship found in the local graves show that trading 
relations had long been established between the two regions. Three times during 
the seventeenth century the Chinese of Luzon rose against their Spanish masters, 
and each time the revolt was quelled in torrents of blood. After all manner of 
harassing restrictions were imposed on these troublesome immigrants, they were 
expelled in mass or massacred in 1763, soon after the temporary occupation of 
Manilla by the English. But with them trade disappeared,, and despite the con- 
tempt of Europeans and the hatred of Tagals, they had soon to be recalled, so that 
at present every town in the archipelago has its Chinese quarter. In 1887, they 
were estimated altogether at fifty-three thousand, almost exclusively men, most of 
whom return to China after making their fortune, and generally leaving behind 
them a family of half-castes. These half-castes, who resemble the Chinese much 
more than the native type, found new homes in their turn, and, thanks to their 
surprising vigour, they constitute at present the majorit}- of the bourgeois class 
in most of the towns. 

Although the Spaniards made their appearance forty-four years after the death 
of Magellan, the conquest of the archipelago is still far from comijlete. Although 
by an abuse of language spoken of as a colony, it is really a military possession, 
in which the whites are mainly officials, who control the natives, but found no 
permanent settlements in the country. The Spanish Creoles, however, who have 
not maintained the purity of their blood, are perfect^ acclimatised, and become 
the heads of numerous more or less mixed families. The white element, in which 
are also represented some Peruvians and Mexicans, numbers altogether about four- 
teen thousand, a proportion not greater than that of the Dutch in Indonesia. 

Apart from the wild tribes in Mindanao and elsewhere, the inhabitants of the 
Philippines are amongst the most civilised in the extreme East. In most of the 
provinces the villages of the Indies are well kept and far superior, in many res- 
pects, to the irregular groups of cabins still to be seen in so many European lands. 
Each dwelling is isolated in the midst of a flowery garden, and separated from the 
adjoining plots by rows of palms and bananas. The houses are all raised on piles 
about seven feet above the ground, thus recalling the time when the natives dwelt 
on alluvial lands on the shores of lakes or the sea. The timber framework of 
these houses is carved with the greatest care and often with much taste ; while the 
well-swejDt and polished apartments are fitted with good furniture aud Chinese 

Except in the territory of the Ilocos and some other parts, each familj'^ has its 
little independent plot of land, and this system of small free lodgings prevails 
throughout most of the archipelago. Apart from a few Chinese half-castes nobodj' 
owns extensive domains, but all have enough, taking one season with another, to 
support their families and leave a little for the feasts and holidays. In the thickly 
peopled provinces the land is divided and subdivided into innumerable allotments 


for the cultivation of rice, sweet potatoes, and other alimentary produce. All the 
plots belong to the cultivators themselves, who sell only the surplus of their crops, 
and this surplus, bought up by Chinese and other middlemen, constitutes the 
great bulk of the commodities exported by the Manilla merchants. But the 
exports are still far less than they might be, for the cultivated lands are estimated 
at not more than 4,500,000 acres, or scarcely one-fifteenth of the whole <irea of the 

One of the last of the old government monopolies was that of tobacco, which 
was not abolished till the year 1882. This plant is cultivated chiefly in the 
northern provinces of Luzon, and especially in the Cagayan basin. Formerly the 
labourers on the plantations were little better than serfs. Every village was bound 
to deliver a certain quantity of tobacco at a price far inferior to the real value. 
The result was that the cultivators, oppressed by official rapacity, found no time to 
till their rice-fields, and, despite the great fertility of the soil, they were constantly 
threatened with famine. The monopoly tended also to impair the quality of the 
leaf, and the Manilla cigars, badly prepared by servile labour, became greatly 
inferior to those of Havana. At present the Philippines hold the fifth place for 
the production of tobacco, standing before Cuba and coming next after the United 
States, Turkey, Brazil, and Indonesia. The plantations suffered much from the 
ravages of parasites before the introduction of certain insectivorous birds from 

Sugar, which stands first on the list of exports, goes almost entirely to the 
United States and Great Britain. The crop is about two-thirds of that of Java, 
and is now valued at about £2,000,000. Coffee, much neglected after the Franco- 
German war, has again acquired some importance ; but cacao and other colonial 
produce contribute little to the export trade. An extensive local industry has 
been developed in connection with the Musa ahaca, commonly known as "Manilla 
hemp," from which are woven textile fabrics superior in strength and lightness to 
those made of the best Russian hemp. These articles are seldom exf)orted, being 
almost entirely bought up by the Chinese half-castes for the local consumption. 
The banana, which yields the fibre for this industrj^, flourishes best in the Cama- 
rines peninsula, where as much as thirty cwts. are raised on an acre of ground. 

None of the . other native industries have acquired any development, so that 
most manufactured wares have to be imported from abroad. During the last 
decade the movement of exchange has increased rapidly, thanks to the abolition 
of certain monopolies, the reduced customs dues, the free admission of foreign 
shipping, and the opening of new ports to trade. Regular lines of steam-packets 
ply now between Manilla and the two great British marts of Singapore and Hong- 
Kong, while smaller steamers maintain the communications between the cajjital 
and the chief seaports of the archipelago. But the great natural resources of many 
inland districts still lie dormant, owing to the almost total absence of good roads 
and of railways, beyond a short line running from Manilla northwards. 

On the other hand, the social position of the people is greatly superior to that 
of the Javanese and other populations under Dutch administration. Most of the 


Indies have learnt to read and ^\Tite Spanish, and even when emploj-ing their native 
idioms they substitute the Eoman for the somewhat rude and difficult characters 
of Hindu origin, which were in use before the arrival of the Spaniards. The 
civilised natives have also adopted the European costume, though in a modified 
form, wearing the shirt as a blouse, and the Chinese form of hat. 

Speaking generally, the Indies of the Philippines may be regarded as amongst 
the happiest populations in the world. They lead a pleasant, easy life in the midst 
of their fragrant gardens, under the shade of fruit-laden palms, and on the banks 
of babbling brooks. In many places they sow their rice in cadence, to the sound 
of violin or clarionette. But they yield too readily to indolent habits, and omit 
no opportimity of indulging in the national vice of gambling. Cock-fighting 
is a favourite sport on feast days, and the Eoman Catholic religion itself is for 
them little more than a succession of festive amusements. Troubling themselves • 
little with questions of dogma, they disjilay extraordinary zeal in the celebration of 
the pompous rites of the Roman liturgy, and a great part of their existence is 
thus passed in the observance of practices not greatly differing from those of their 
primitive cult. A domestic altar, with the images of the Madonna and saints, suc- 
cessors of the ancient anitos, occupies the place of honour in every household, and 
the humblest hamlet has its special feast, during which these sacred images, draped 
in embroidered silks and crowned with chaplets of flowers, are borne at the head 
of brilliant processions. The churches, built in the Spanish " Jesuit " style, are 
similarly decorated with rich hangings, bannerols and floral festoons, while every 
village has its band of musicians, who accompany the religious ceremonies with a 
flourish of trombones and cymbals. Actors also are frequently engaged to perform 
the " mysteries," and play comedies in which the sacred and profane are strangely 
intermingled, the feast days kept in honour of the saints usually winding up with 
a grand display of fireworks. 

The cure, especially if a Spaniard by birth, is the most influential person in the 
district, and to him the "Capitan" applies for advice on all serious occasions. 
The church bells announce the hour of his siesta, and on him far more than on 
troops and arms the government depends for the absolute submission of the con- 
verted natives. But the increasing relations with the outer world, the spread of 
education, the diffusion of profane literature daily penetrating more and more 
despite the censure of the press, all tend to bring about a new order of things, 
under which the Indios, while becoming more assimilated to their European 
master, must gain in independence and moral freedom. Hence the local clergy 
show themselves little favourable to changes threatening to diminish their influence 
over their congregations. They even see with reluctance the slow spread of the 
Spauish language amongst the natives. But this result is inevitable since the 
official decree that no Indio can henceforth exercise any remunerative or public 
function, even in the villages, unless he can read and write Spanish. 

Topography of the Philippines. 
Manilla, capital of the Philippines, lies on a spacious oval-shaped bay at the 



month of the Pasig emissary of tbo nciglibouriii g Laguna. The city properly so- 
callod, enclosed by a Hue of ramparts, occupies the site on the left or southern bank, 
which was chosen by Lopez de Lcgaspi in 1071 as the bulwark of Spanish power 

Fig. 114. — Manilla. 
Scale 1 : io.OOO. 

in the Eastern seas. Here are centred the administrative buildings, barracks, and 
convents, while trade and the industries have migrated to the quarters on the 
north side, which are connected by two bridges wilh "walled Manilla," as the old 





tovni is called. Extensive suburbs iilso stretch along- both margins of the Pasig, 
the whole place covering an area of about five square miles. 

The sanitary conditions are far from satisfactorj'. Thus the river, the water of 
which taken above the city is used for drinking purposes, is charged with all kinds 
of refuse floating up and do^^•n with the tides. The numerous canals derived from 
the Pasig, and ramifying through this "Tagal Venice," run dry for half the year, 
leaving deposits of fetid mud to poison the atmosphere. The fortifications also, 
now absolutely useless as defensive works, serve only to jDrevent the free circulation 
of healthy sea-breezes. Often shaken by earthquakes, Manilla possesses no public 
buildings of an imposing character, but here are centred the chief educational 
establishments, the observatory, a school of design, a small museum, and a public 

As a centre of trade Manilla occupies an admirable position at the outlet of an 
inland sea, and on a vast bay 120 miles in circumference, spacious enough to 
accommodate all the navies of the world. The approach to this roadstead is partly 
protected by the volcanic Corregidor island, while during the prevalence of the 
south-west monsoon ships of three hundred tons are able to ride at anchor in the 
Pasig estuary under shelter of a long joier. The inlet at Cavite, eight miles farther 
south, also affords a refuge at this season to small men-of-war, and a new port in 
course of construction off the old town will soon accommodate ships of the heaviest 
tonnage in its extensive basins. To its other advantages Manilla adds its com- 
manding position on the main routes of navigation between the Sunda Strait and 
the Yangtze-Kiang estuary. Laperouse asserted, perhaj)S with some exaggera- 
tion, that the capital of the Philij^jjines occupied the finest commercial site of any 
city in the world. Until the year 1811 it served as the chief intermediate station 
for the trade between Spain and her American colonies. 

Manilla is connected by a line of steam omnibuses with Malaboii, which, like 
the capital, lies on the shores of a gulf at the mouth of a river. Here is the 
largest cigar manufactory in the Philippines, emjiloying at times as many as ten 
thousand hands. Both Malabon and Buhtcaii, which stands a little farther north 
on a branch of the PamjDanga, may be regarded as industrial dependencies of 
Manilla. The same remark ajDplics also to the fortified town of Cavite, which 
lies to the south, and which, with its arsenal, docks, factories, and European build- 
ings, has the most Spanish aspect of any town in the archipelago. The neighbour- 
ing district of Inclan is noted for the prime quality of its coffee. 

The two pueblos of Pasig and Patcros, on the Lagiina, at the outlet of its emis- 
sary should also be considered as outer markets of the capital. For over three 
miles along the banks of the river nothing is to be seen except aquatic preserves 
for the ducks bred to supply the wants of the city. They are fed on shell-fish 
brought from the roadstead, and the eggs are artificially hatched at Pateros. The 
lake, Laguna de Bay, takes its name from a village on the south side of this 
inland sea ; on the same side but more to the north-west stands Santa-Cruz, capital 
of the province. Here are also the much-frequented thermal waters of BaJios, and 
the industrial town of Ltichan, which, with its sjDrings, grottoes, and cascades, 



occupies ono of the most romantic sites iu Luzon, not far from the San-Cristohal 
volcano. On the north side of the Laguna lies the riverain port of JToroii, also a 
provincial capital. 

In the basin of the copious Pampanga river, a northern affluent of Manilla 
Bay, are several populous towns, such as Gajxiii, near some gold and coal mines in 
the province of Nueva-Ecija, a more important place than its capital, San-Imlro. 
Tliis is one of the regions \^■hich suffered most from the earthquakes of 1880, when 

Fig. 11.5.— EiTOKONS OF Manilla. 
Scale 1 ; 300,000. 


32 Feet 
and upwards. 

vast tracts along the river bank were broken into more or less regular sections by 
yawning crevasses. Farther south is Bacolor, another provincial chief town, which 
was selected as the capital of the Spanish possessions during the temporary occupa- 
tion of Manilla by the in 1762. The steamers plying between Manilla 
and the Lower Pampanga stop at the station of Guagna below Bacolor. Calmnpit, 
an agricultural centre east of this place, stands at the confluence of the Pampanga 
and Quingoa rivers, in the most fertile district of the archipelago. 


Bahtnga, facing Manilla on the west side of the bay, is followed round the 
intervening promontory by the well- sheltered port of Mariveks, which gives its 
name to the neighbouring volcano. Beyond it is the harbour of Subig, said to be 
the safest in the Philippines, being protected on three sides by the southern head- 
lands of the Zambales Mountains. Iha, capital of the province, lies on a dangerous 
creek a little farther north. In the sjjacious Lingayen Bay are several excellent 
havens, notably that of Sxal, which, though now opened to international trade, is 
still little frequented by shipping. The rugged Zambales highlands and the lack 
of communications with the interior prevent trade from being attracted to this part 
of the Luzon seaboard. The large town of Lingai/cn, whence the bay takes its 
name, lies between Sual and the port of Bagupan, on a branch of the Agno Grande 
delta. In the interior of this basin, which comprises the three provinces of 
Benguet, Tarlac, and Pangasinan, the chief town is Smi-Migtiel de Camiling, where 
several tribes of distinct speech are conterminous. 

Along the north-west coast follow several considerable towns, such as Santo- 
Tomas, Ariiigai/, San-Fernando, and Vigan, this last in the delta of the Abra river. 
Laoag, near the north-west corner of Luzon, ranks next to Manilla for population, 
although it possesses no harbour, nor any resources bej'ond the agricultural pro- 
duce of the surrounding district. Beyond this point the seaboard is nearly unin- 
habited, the population of Luzon being mostly concentrated on the west side facing 
the Asiatic mainland. Even in the basin of the Cagaj'an, the most copious river 
in the Philippines, the only large towns are Tiigiiagaraoand LaUo, formerly Nueva- 
Segovia, which in recent times has acquired some importance as the depot for the 
best tobacco grown in the archipelago. Aparri, the port of this place, stands on 
the right side of the Cagayan estuary. 

Then for 420 miles along the northern and eastern coasts of Luzon no seaport 
occurs until Binangonan is reached, in about the latitude of Manilla over against 
the island of Polillo. The Babuyanes and Batanes groups between North Luzon 
and Formosa are almost uninhabited, although favourably situated near the ocean 
highway between Hong-Kong and Sydney. This route is longer but safer, and, 
consequently, more frequented than that of Torres Strait and the intricate waters 
of the eastern archipelago. 

Marlgondon, Baragan, and Taal, on the west side of Luzon below Manilla, all 
lie in extremely fertile and highly cultivated districts. Here also Batangas, one 
of the largest towns in the archipelago, occupies a position of vital importance at 
the entrance of San-Bernardino Channel, the great commercial highway between 
Luzon, the Yisayas Islands, and Mindanao. On the north side of Mindoro, nearly 
opposite Batangas, lies Calapnn, rovmd which are grouped nearly all the inhabi- 
tants of this island. 

Along the narrow Camarines peninsula follow several busy marts, such as 
Tayahas and Mauhan, on a roadstead well sheltered by the islet of Alabat. But 
here the population is concentrated chiefly in the basin of the river Vicol, where 
are crowded together the rural towns of Camalig, Guinohatan, Ligao, Oas, Polangul, 
and Libong, each with over twelve thousand inhabitants, though distant less than 



two miles from each other. Below Lake Batu, where it becomes navigable, the 
Vicol flows by Nabua and Nacja or Nuevn-Caceres, capital of the province of 
Camarincs-Sur, bej^ond which it falls into San-Miguel Bay opposite the fortress 
of Cahusao, and not far from Daet, capital of the province of North Camarines. 

Albay and its neighbour 
Fig. iiG.— SAiiAE AND Leytb. Dai'drja occupy a charming 

scale 1:2,500,000. p^^j^j^^^ ^^ ^^^^ f^^^ ^f ^^^ 

verdant lower slopes of the 
Mayon volcano. Daraga, 
officially designated Cag- 
sciiia, replaces an older town 
of this name which stood 
higher up on the flanks of 
the mountain, but which 
was destroyed by the erup- 
tion of 1814. The port of 
both towns is Legaspi, which 
is exposed to the full fury 
of the north-east monsoons, 
and consequently inacces- 
sible during the winter 
months ; at this season all 
the traffic is transferred to 
tSorsogoii on the west side of 
Luzon. Other ports in this 
region are Tibi and Tabaco, 
north of Albay, and Bulitmn 
at the east foot of Mayon. 

In the island of Samar, 
which forms a south-eastern 
extension of the Camarines 
peninsula, there are no large 
towns. The most important 
centres of population are 
Guinan near the southern 
extremity ; Borongaii on the 
east coast, like Guinan sur- 
rounded by vast forests of 
cocoa-nut palms ; and the 
capital Catbalogan on the west coast, on an almost inaccessible roadstead. 

Of the adjacent island of Leyte the capital and chief seaport is Taclohan, at the 
southern entrance of the channel separating the two islands. This channel, some 
twenty-four miles long, contracts in some places to a narrow defile, expands in 
others to a broad lake, and at certain points is only a few hundred yards wide. 


100 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

— — GO Miles. 



Both shores are frmgcd by priiueral forest, iutcrruptecl only by a few village clear- 
ings and their cocoa-nut groves. Here and there occur picturesque cliffs jjierced 
by caverns where the islanders formerly deposited their dead. In the vicinity of 
Basey on the Samar side opposite Tacloban the poisonous jilant known as Saint 

117. — Ilo-Ilo and Steait op GuiiiAEiS. 
Scale 1 ; 650,000. 

ion Fathoms 
and upwards. 

Ignatius' bean (Sfri/e/niofi Igiiatin amara) grows in the greatest i^rofusion. Another 
tree of the dicfcrocarpus species v'ields the balao or malapajo, a resinous oil, which 
is highly prized for its property of preserving iron from rust. 

Paniiy, situated about the centre of the archipelago, is relatively the most 


populous member of the whole group. Here are several more or less important 
places, such as Cajoiz on the north coast ; San Joae de Baenavistn and Antique on 
the west side ; Sihalon farther inland in the same district ; Concepcion in the north- 
east, and in the south-east Ilo-Ilo, on the well-sheltered channel separating Panay 
from the islet of Guimaras. Next to Manilla, Ilo-Ilo is the most frequented 
seaport in the Philipjjines. Since it has been thrown open to foreign trade, it has 
rapidly attracted to itself a large share of the export trade in sugar and other 
colonial produce, as well as of the import trade in European and Chinese wares. 
A little to the north of Ilo-Ilo lies the episcopal suburb of Jaro. 

Although Ilo-Ilo is the central emporium for the whole of the Yisayas 
Islands, Ccbu or Zebu, the chief place in the island of like name, ranks as the 
capital of the group, probably owing to the priority of its foundation. Its first 
buildings were erected by the conqueror Legaspi in 1571, just fifty years after 
Magellan had met his death on the islet of Mactan close to this spot. Cebu, 
which like Ilo-Ilo was thrown open to international trade in 1863, exports the rice 
of Panay, the abaca of Leyte, the wax, ratans, and mother-of-pearl of Mindanao, 
the sugar and tobacco forwarded from Taghilaran and Maribojoc, capital of the 
neighbouring island of Bohol. In the Cebu district are some carboniferous beds, 
which yield a coal of good qualitj'. 

The large island of Mindanao, stiU almost entirely occupied by independent 
tribes, has no Spanish stations except a few here and there on the seaboard. One 
of the most promising of these stations is Misamis, in an auriferous district on the 
north coast. Bufitan has the ad\-antage of being situated on the estuary of the 
great river Agusan ; Suriijao, at the northern extremity of the island, commands 
the chief channel opening eastwards In the direction of the Pacific ; BisUg, towards 
the middle of the east coast, possesses an excellent harbour on a seaboard exposed 
to fierce gales during half the year. Here is the only safe anchorage on the 
east side of the island south of Suragao. West of Vcrgara, recently founded on 
the spacious Gulf of Davao or Tagloc, the only settlements are Cottubafo and 
Folloc, in the fertile plain watered by the Rio Grande, and Zamboanga, an old 
station at the extremity of the south-western headland dating from the year 1635. 
This place, which exports the best coffee in the archipelago, is remarkably ' 
salubrious, notwithstanding its jDosition on a low-lying j)lain broken by brackish 
lagoons or swamps at the foot of wooded hills. Its inhabitants, nearly all half- 
breeds, are none the less proud of their Spanish descent, and speak Castilian with 
great purity. In the last centmy Zamboanga temporarily disa^jpeared under a 
shower of ashes from a neighbouring volcano. 

In the Sulu (Jolo) archipelago, since 1876 formally annexed to the Spanish 
colonial possessions, each of the larger islands has its military or naval station to 
keep the unruly inhabitants in awe, and guard the neighbouring seas from their 
piratical excursions. At Basilan, against which the French had sent an expedition 
in 1845 to avenge the murder of some sailors, the Manilla government fearing a 
permanent French occupation, has founded the town of Isabella, which, thanks to 
its excellent harbour facing Zamboanga, seems destined one day to acquire some 



importance. Unfortunately the climate is so unhealthy that some hundreds of 
convicts sent to clear the ground in the vicinity of the rising town all died of 

The ancient city of Sh/k, at the western extremity of the island of like 
name, has also become a Spanish station, and the descendant of the dreaded 
sultans who ruled the whole archipelago together with North Borneo, is now 
nothing more than an obscure pensioner of the Philippine Government. His 
capital has lost all its industries, and the famous krisses made at this place are 
now replaced by weapons of English or German manufacture. 

In the large island of Paragua or Palawan, Spain also maintains two military 

Fig. lis. — Si'LU Archipelago. 
Scale 1 : 2,250,000. 

y^. — .=^ 


stations : Tay-tay, near the northern extremity on a well-sheltered inlet, and 
Pucrto-Princesa, on a fine natural harbour on the east coast. The forests in the 
immediate neighbourhood of the latter station are still occupied by the Tagbanuhoy, 
wild tribes of Malay origin, and the mountains of the interior are inhabited by 
the Bataks, who are supposed to be of Negrito stock. 

In the island of Balabac, facing the Bornean archipelago of Banguay, the only 
centre of population is a mere village, while the islets studding the China Sea 
farther west are uninhabited. 


Administratiox of the Philippines. 

The Philippines are governed directly from Madrid by the Crown and Cortes ; 
hence, ■without being fundamentally changed, their administration is modified 
with the vicissitudes of political power in the Iberian peninsula. 

At the head of affairs stands the governor- general, who commands the military 
and naval forces, and personally administers the island of Luzon, the Yisayas 
group and Mindanao being placed under the authority of subordinate governors. 
The governor- general is himself assisted by an administrative council, the 
members of which are chosen by the central power. A sort of ministry, 
irresponsible except to this central power, is also constituted by some of the 
higher officials, including the government secretary, the head of the staff, the 
directors of financial and civil affairs. The governor- general is considered as the 
"vice-patron" of the church. 

The three governments of Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao are divided into 
provinces administered either by military governors or by civil alcaldes who are 
at the same time judges in the first instance in both the civil and criminal courts. 
In most of Luzon the civil system prevails ; but the regime is strictly military in 
Mindanao, and even in the Yisayas, although the popirlation of these islands is 
entirely civilised and almost as dense as in the industrial countries of Western 
Europe. Each province is divided into pueblos, a term which comprises both the 
district itself and its chief town ; hence some of these pueblos have a consider- 
able population, ranging from ten thousand to fifteen thousand, and even twenty 
thousand. Such are those in the neighbourhood of Ifanilla, in the southern 
regions of Luzon, in Panaj^, and some other members of the Visayas group, and 
each of these districts is administered bj' a (johcniadorciUo, or "little governor," 
who delegates his powers to tenieittcs, or "lieutenants," placed at the head of each 
village or hamlet in the pueblo. 

All the higher functionaries are exclusively Spaniards appointed directly from 
the mother country ; but the smaller officials of the pueblos are drawn from the 
half-caste or indigenous classes, and elected for three years by the leading citizens 
of the district. The gobernadorcillos, called also " captains," are at once mayors 
and judges ; but appeal is allowed from their decisions to the alcaldes and the 
audieneia, or supreme court of Manilla. The notables of the pueblos are collectively 
responsible for the taxes, which average about six shillings for every adult 
between sixteen and sixty years of age. 

The collection of these taxes constitutes the main function of the local officials, 
and the chief impost still retains the name of tribute, as at the time when the 
natives of the Philippines were still regarded as conguered pagans. This tribute, 
a kind of poll-tax, formerly about four, but at present exceeding ten shillings a 
year, is usually levied on the family group, and supplies the elements for the 
summary statistics of the population. Besides this tax, the men are required to 
give forty days' work to the government for the construction of roads and 
communal bvuldings. But such an apparently excessive extent of statute labour 



is but a slight burclcu amongst llie indolent populations of the archipelago, where 
every native may purchase exemption for a sum which in no instance exceeds 
twelve or thirteen shillings. The Chinese pay a tribute of twenty-five shillings, 
which for their mestizos is reduced to one-half, while all Europeans are entirely 

-Density of the Population or the Philippines. 
Scale 1 : 12,500,000. 

Inhabitants to the Square Mile. 



2 to 50. 50 to 200. 200 and upwards. 
Each square represents over 1,000 inhabitants. 
180 Miles. 

exempt from this poll-tax, which was originally a mark of subjection. Other 
chief sources of revenue are the taxes levied on industries and real property, the 
customs and navigation dues, the postal and telegraphic services, lotteries, excise, 
cock-fighting, and some other minor taxes. The cultivation of opium is interdicted 



and its iraportutiou restricted to certaiu Chinese traders. The yearly outlay, 
whicli includes the maintenance of the diplomatic service in China and Japan, is 
usually in excess of the income. 

Although the Inquisition has been abolished in the present century, the 

Fig. 120. — Peoyixcial Divisions of the Philippines. 
Scale 1 : 11,300,000. 

I fe^UE.Gre,n..,ch 

exercise of no public worship is tolerated except that of Catholicism, the State 
religion. A part of tho tribute is strictly reserved for the support of the clergy, 
who have also a right to exact direct contributions called ^j«e de altar, because paid 
by the faithful at " the foot of the altar." The Spanish secular clergy, com- 
prising a small number of ecclesiastics, reside chiefly iu the archiepiscopal city of 
Manilla, and iu the three bishoprics of Nueva-Caceres, Jaro and Cebu. The 


pueblos arc administered either by native priests, or by tlie different religious 
orders, such as Dominicans, Franciscans, Jesuits, and especially Augustinians, the 
wealthiest and most influential of all. According to their regulations, these 
missionaries are bound to reside at least ten years in the archipelago, and few of 
them entertain any hope of ever returning to the mother country. But they are 
not a numerous body, and the local clergy does not number altogether as many as 
twelve hundred persons. The native priests are educated in the large diocesan 

Public instruction, obligatory in the civilised districts, is under the control of 
the priests, who have established primary schools in nearly all the pueblos. Here 
the children learn to read and write Spanish, and although this language ia 
generally forgotten after they leave school, it is gradually becoming the idiom of 
the civilised classes, and reducing the native tongues to the position of provincial 
patois. Secondary instruction is provided for by two colleges, one directed by the 
Dominicans, the other by the Jesuits. The university of Santo-Tomas, founded in 
1645, is essentially a theological institution, although also comprising scientific 
and medical courses. The censure, however, still prohibits the introduction of 
most foreign scientific and literary works, and so recently as 1882 Bernardin de 
Saint Pierre's Paul and Virginia was specially interdicted ! The one Tagal 
and eight or ten Spanish periodicals are also subjected to the ecclesiastical 

The nucleus of the colonial forces consists of about 1,450 Spaniards, forming a 
regiment of artillery, the rest of the army being made up of some six thousand 
natives. These are enlisted for a period of eight j-ears; but substitution is 
allowed, the average price in time of peace ranging from £8 to £10 in the 
wealth}' provinces. A militia of cuadrilkros is occasionally enrolled for local 

The navy comprises about twenty corvettes, avisos and gun-boats, manned by 
two thousand hands, and stationed chiefly at Cavite, Manilla, Lingayen and 
Zamboanga. Seven seaports are oj)en to foreign trade : Manilla, Legasj)i and 
Sual in Luzon ; Tacloban, Ilo-Ilo, Cebu and Sulu in the other islands. 

A table of the fifty-four j^rovinces with their areas, poindations and chief 
towns will be found in the Appendix. 

VOL. xrv. 


I. — The Mariana or Lauroxe Islands. 

TIESE islands, j)olitically united to the Pliilif)pines for over two 
centuries, are also associated with them in the histoiy of maritime 
exploration. They were the first group met by Magellan in 15"31 
on his voyage round the globe, and ten days afterwards he had 
reached the Philippine island of Cebu and the adjacent islet of 
Mactan, where he met his death. Later, when the Spaniards had permanently 
occupied the Philippines and estabKshed the regular service of their galleons across 
the Pacific, the island of Guam in the Marianas became the indispensable station 
for their mariners between Manilla and Acapulco on the Mexican coast ; and when 
the aborigines of the Marianas had almost entirely disappeared this group was 
repeopled by immigrants from the Philippines, bringing with them new plants, 
usages, and language. 

The name of the Ladrones, or "Robbers," given to these islands by Magellan, 
has fallen into abeyance, and, like the Philippines, they are indebted to flattery 
for their more usual designation conferred on them in ho"nour "of the Spanish 
Queen, Mariana of Austria, wife of Philip. After their discovery by Magellan 
they vere explored chiefly by Anson, Byron, Wallis, and_ Freycinet. 

A space of about 1,200 miles going eastwards separates the most advanced land 
in the Philippines from' the first south-western island in the Mariana group, and 
this space is everywhere almost entirely free from islets or reefs of any sort. 
Nothing but a few rocks, such as Parece Yela, are visible in the north as the 
archipelago is approached from Japan, while some other lands announce the 
proximity of the Pelew Islands to mariners advancing from the south. Thus the 
chain of the Marianas is limited westwards by a perfectly open sea about 80,000 
square miles in extent, and in some places f;-om 1,200 to 1,-500 fathoms deep. 
Hence it is evident that this archipelago is in no way connected with the forma- 
tion of the Philippines, but belongs to an independent geological system. 

The disposition of the chain shows at a glance an obvious analogy with the 
volcanic ranges of the Kuriles and Aleutian Islands, describing as it does an 
arc of surprising regularity, as if traced with a compass with its fixed point resting 
on the north coast of Luzon. The Marianas also constitute a volcanic range, some 



121. — Maeiana Aechipelaoo. 
Scale 1 : 8,000,000. 

of whose cones rise many hundred feet above the sea, while others, failing to reach 

the surface serve as a foundation for a crown of coralline limestones rising above 

the surrounding wafers. The chain stretches north and south a total distance of 

about 600 miles, and the seventeen islands with their islets and reefs have a 

collective area, estimated by Agius at 

little more than 400, and by Behm and 

Wagner at scarcely 560 square miles. 

Guam, or Giiaban, the largest island, 

comprising nearly half the extent of the 

whole group, is continued southwards 

by the Rosa Bank, which lies on the 

northern edge of the deepest cavit}- in 

this part of the Pacific (2,475 fathoms). of this abj-'ss the soundings 

of the Challenger show everywhere depths 

of over 1,500 fathoms. 

Considered as a range of half-sub- 
merged mountains the Marianas begin 
with a few basalt and tufa crests, which 
in Guam attain a height of from 1,300 to 
1,600 feet, dominating the grassy or 
wooded plateaux, the sandy or argillaceous 
plains, and steep coastline of this pictur- 
esque island. Northwards ' the chain, 
interrupted at first by a channel thirty 
miles wide, reappears iu Mount Tempiii- 
gan and the rock-bound island of Rota or 
Sarpan. Then follow Aguij an; the charm- 
ing Tinian with its gently undulating 
hills ; Saj-pan with two extinct volcanoes 
at its northern extremity ; Alamagan, 
whose smoking crater is probably the 
culminating point of the archipelago 
(2,320 feet) ; Pagan, composed of two 
mountainous islands united at the base, 
bearing two active and one quiescent vol- 
cano ; Agrigan with an extinct cone ; and 
Assumption (2,100 feet), whose fissured 

flanks still emit vapours. The Uraccas, 120 iiiies. 

or Mangas, near the northern extremity 

of the chain, seem, like the Dedica islets off the north coast of Luzon, to be tlie 
remains of a circuit of marine craters, while Farallon dos Parajos, terminating the 
whole system, is a stiU active volcano 1,300 feet high. Altogether the chain 
appears to contain six not yet extinct cones. 

T 2 

M4° E. of Greenwich 146 

2,000 to 3 nrm 

3.000 fntlioms 

Fathoms, and u^jwaic 


Exposed during the so-called drj' seasou from October to May to tlie regular 
north-east trade winds, the Marianas receive their most abundant rains from the 
moist south-west currents, which prevail during the four summer months from 
June to September. But moisture Is precl23ltated at all times, and the streams are 
everywhere copious except where absorbed by the porous calcareous soil and volcanic 
scorlaj. The destruction of the forests has also reduced the rainfall and rendered 
the freshets more sudden and the droughts more protracted. 

The Indigenous flora, consisting chiefly of Asiatic species, has mostlj'' disap- 
peared, and the present vegetation has been malnlj' Introduced by man In recent 
times. Here, as in most tropical islands, the prevailing forms are the cocoa-nut 
palm and the rima, or bread tree. The only indigenous mammal is the large 
" Keraudren " bat, the flesh of which Is eaten by the natives, notwithstanding its 
disagreeable odour. There are but few species of birds, and the paroquets, so 
richly represented In the Moluccas, are totally absent. Even insects are rare, and 
the reptile order is limited to a few kinds of lizards and a single species of 

When first visited by Europeans the archipelago was found to contain a 
considerable poiDulation. The Chamorros, unjustly stigmatised by Magellan as 
Ladrones, or robbers, appear to have been akin to the Tagals at least In speech ; 
but the physical appearance of their few descendants would lead to the supposition 
that the aborigines were a half-caste Indonesian and Papuan race. These two 
elements may have been represented by the two distinct classes of nobles and 
people, between whom marriage and even contact were forbidden. But however 
this be, the Spanish conquest ended by reducing all alike to a common state of 

Long after the occupation of the archipelago the Chamorros continued to 
hold out valiantly against the oppressive measures of the authorities, and when all 
resistance ceased towards the end of the seventeenth century, it was found that of 
the fifty thousand or sixty thousand natives more than half had perished or 
escaped to the Caroline Islands ; over two-thirds of the 180 villages had fallen 
to ruins. Then came the epidemics, which swept away most of the natives 
of Guam, and when they were replaced by comijulsory immigration from Tinian 
nearlj-all the new arrivals iDerlshcd of inanition : Tinian had been entirely depopu- 
lated without any advantage to Guam. 

In 1760 the population of the Marianas had been reduced to 1,654 souls, 
and it was then that recourse was had to Tagal-colonlsts from the Philippines, 
\\ho absorbed most of the surviving aborigines. In 1875 not more than six 
hundred in a total population of nearly nine thousand were regarded as of more 
or less pure Chamorro stock. In Guam are concentrated six-sevenths of all the 
inhabitants, who have steadily Increased since the outbreak of measles in 1856. 
The northern islands are occupied only by a few families engaged in fishing ; 
Tinian has only a single village and a community of lejaers ; Eota and Suyan 
ha-ve each not more than a few hundred souls. 

The natives of the Marianas have fallen off in ciilture as well as in numbers ; 







although baptised and capable of reading Spanish they have forgotten the industries 
practised by their forefathers. Agriculture has greatly deteriorated, the art of 
pottery has disappeared, the woven fabrics are coarser than formerly, the perfectly 
symmetrical houses seen by Anson in Tinian are no longer constructed, and rude 
canoes have reijlaced the beautiful outriggers admired by the early navigators. 
Anson's crew calculated that this craft could make twenty^ knots an hour running 
before a brisk trade wind ; when driven from their proper route they often reached 
islands lying at great distances from the Marianas. 

Agcim, capital of the archipelago, on the north-west coast of Guam, contains 
more than half of the whole population, as well as all the political prisoners 
banished to this region. The port is accessible only to small boats, and the postal 
service with Manilla is made only once in the twelvemonth. 

The government of the Marianas is military, the garrison consisting of three 
hundred natives recruited by conscription. The clusters of islets, such as Parry 
and Volcano, scattered over the northern waters in the direction of the Ogasavara 
or Benin group belonging to Japan, are nearly all uninhabited. On many marine 
charts they are still designated by the collective name of the Magellan Archipelago, 
but their total area scarcely exceeds forty square miles. 

II. — The Pelew or P.\l.\os Isl.\xds. 

This archipelago is often regarded as belonging to the chain of the Carolines, 
just as Yap and the neighbouring islets have frequently been included in the 
Pelew group. The Sjjauiards, political masters in these seas, comprise all alike 
under the common designation of the Caroline Islands. Nevertheless they clearly 
constitute different systems, as shown by the disposition of the chains, the Caro- 
lines running west and east and then bending round to the south-east, while the 
Pelews ate disposed north-east and south-west. However, the geological constitu- 
tion of both groups is the same, all being formed of mountains of eruptive origin, 
trachytes or basalts, or else of coralline rocks, either as low atolls or upheaved to 
considerable heights by the oscillations of the ground. 

Collectively the Pelew Islands have an area of little over two hundred square 
miles, of which more than half are comprised in the single island of Baobeltaob 
(Babelthuup). From north to south they have a total length of about 550 and a 
breadth of over 240 miles at the widest point, being thus spread over an expanse 
of 40,000 square miles, and bounded east and west by abysses over 1,000 fathoms 
deep. The population is variously estimated at from ten thousand (o fourteen 

The northern islands, which were first visited by the Spanish navigators and 
which Yillalobos designated by the name of Arrecifes, form a perfectly distinct 
group, comprising Babelthuap with its south-western extensions terminating in the 
insular mass of Niaur (Ngaur), most fertile and healthiest member of the archi- 
pelago. The loftiest eruptive eminences lie near the west coast of Babelthuap, 
where one of the peaks rises to a height of 2,130 feet. This island is partly covered 



with timber, whence its Sj)anish name of Palos, afterwards cTianged to Palaos, and 
by English mariners corrupted to Pelcw. 

Although very poor in animal forms, the Pclcws have nevertheless some types 
not elsewhere found, such as the pmmafhia, a sj^ecies of bird, and a grey rat. 

122. — Pelew Islands. 

Scale 1 : 900,000, 


80 Feet, and 
upwal ds. 

T>oth the crocodile and the dugong, formerly numerous on the coast, have oecome 
extremely rare, if thsy have not already disappeared altogether. The first 
vertebra of the dugong is considered the most precious object that a chief can 
bestow on a subject, being a distinctive mark of an order of nobility. When a 
happy mortal is judged worthy of this honour, his fingers are bound tightly 


together, and the hand is then thrust by sheer force through the narrow aperture 
of the bone. The distinction is thus often purchased with the loss of a finger. 

The Pelew islanders have a darker complexion than the natives of the Marianas 
and Carolines, and most of them have crisp or frizzly hair. Although there has 
evidently been a mixture of Malay and Pohiiesian elements, the Papuan type 
predominates, and the southern islands lying nearer to the New Guinea coast 
belong ethnically to the Papuasian world. According to Semper many might bo 
taken for Jews, while others are distinguished by small eyes, flat nose, and 
massive jaws. Formerly all pierced the cartilage of the nose ; but this practice 
is falling into abeyance, although connected with a religious legend. The teeth 
are blackened by means of an earth which causes the gums to swell and prevents 
mastication for several da}'s. The body is also painted a bright j'ellow, and 
tattooed ; not so elaborately, however, as by the Caroline islanders. The practice 
is even falling off owing to the dangerous nature of -the operation ; nor has it any 
longer a sacred character. On the other hand some of the Pelew dames wear 
beauty spots, like the fashionable ladies of the eighteenth century in Europe. 

Wilson, being ignorant of the native language, fancied that the people had no 
form of belief. But although there are scarcely any religious ceremonies, their 
mythology is very intricate, and the kalifca, who act as mediators with the spirit 
world, are very powerful, often more so than the chiefs themselves. These 
magicians of both sexes can raise the souls of the dead, cure ailments, disjjel or 
evoke public calamities. Their powers are hereditary, and five of them enjoj' a 
supremacy over all their associates throughout the archipelago. The privileges 
of the kalites and of the chiefs combined with the belief in spirits have surrounded 
the existence of the natives with a multiplicity of prescriptions and observances. 
The life of each individual is regulated by strict' rules, and many places and 
things are moncjul, that is, tabooed. 

The women are respected and may even acquire authority whether as kalites 
or supreme chiefs. They form sisterhoods, whose privileges are recognised, and 
some travellers have reported that in criminal cases the}^ are judged by their 
peers. Traces of a former matriarchal system still survive. Thus power is 
inherited, not from father to son, but from brother to brother, and the sister ranks 
before the wife of the chief. The men also of the different "castes, noble or 
military, are grouped in brotherhoods, and possess special pai or " clubs," into 
which no one can penetrate without their consent. These clubs are relatively 
sumptuous edifices, which are carefully decorated with carved and painted figures. 
A symbolic group is set iip in front, and on the walls are disposed rows of wooden 
images painted in red, yellow and black, some representing religious myths, others 
recording social scenes and constituting a sort of national history. There is also 
a graphic system analogous to the Peruvian quippos, consisting of cords and 
strings, which serve to exchange ideas according to an elaborate method of 

In the Pelew Islands there are almost as many petty states as villages. But, 
thaaks to the support of Wilson after his shipwreck in 1783, the "king" of the 


island of Koroer, south of Babelthuap, acquired a sort of suzerainty over tis 
neighbours. His successors, however, have lost much of their ascendancy, and 
most of the other chiefs hold themselves as fidly his equals. These chiefs bear 
different titles, one of the most significant being tnad, or " death," meaning that the 
potentate's mere glance is fatal to his subjects. But associated with him is a J;rci, 
a sort of military " mayor of the palace," often more powerful than the mad him- 
self. Round him are grouped the rupalcs, or vassals, each with his suite of fierce 
retainers. "War, the essential occupation of this feudal system, is carried on with 
relentless cruelty, the victors sparing neither women nor children. The chief 
object of the hostile raids is to obtain skulls ; for " the great Kalite," say the natives, 
"likes to eat men," and the heads are consequently laid at the feet of the 
magicians, his representatives on earth. But even during warfare the rights of 
hospitality are still respected, and any fugitive who succeeds in penetrating to 
the house of the hostile chief has nothing further to fear. 

To this intertribal strife is mainly due the moral and material decadence of the 
islanders, who are no longer the simple, kindly people described by "Wilson at the 
end of the last century. Even Miklukho-Maklai, with all his sj'mpathy for 
inferior races, speaks of them as false and rapacious. Since the arrival of the 
Europeans the social conditions seem in other respects to have undergone a 
complete change. The natives are more civilised, at least outwardlj' ; they 
ornament their dwellings with engravings and photographs ; they possess iron 
implements, firearms, and even books ; many speak a little English or Spanish, 
while their mother tongue has been enriched by numerous European words, 
required to express the new ideas. The age of stone has passed away, or survives 
only in the local currency, which is of jasper or agate for the chiefs and nobles, of 
stones of less value, glass or enamelled beads, for the lower classes. 

But with all thi, .he population continues to decrease, having fallen from 
probably fifty thousand at the end of the last century to little over twelve 
thousand at present. 

III. — The Caroline Islands. 

The archipelago formerly known as the " New Philippines," and afterwards 
named the Carolines in honour of Charles II. of Spain, is spread over a consider- 
able expanse. From the westernmost island of Ngoli to "Ualan in the extreme 
east the distance in a straight line is no less than 1,800 miles, with a mean breadth 
of about 350 miles. Thus the Caroline Sea comprises an area of about 640,000 
square miles, where the total extent of some five hundred islets disposed in forty- 
eight clusters is estimated at no more than 500 square miles. The water, however, 
is very shallow, and several of the insular groups are enlarged by extensive reefs. 
The greatest depths occur at the western extremity of the archipelago, the 
'Challenger Trough" in the north, the "Nares Trough" in the south, with an 
intervening submarine bank connecting the Carolines with the Pelew group. 

The Carolines were discovered by the Portuguese in 1527, when Diogo da 


Eocha readied the western i.sland of Ngoli or ilatalotes. He was followed in 

1542 by Saavedra and Yillalobos, who traversed the Caroline Sea and sighted some 


of its islands ; others were seen hj Legaspi, conqueror of the Philippines. But 
their position not having been accurately determined, it was impossible to identify 
them, and every passing navigator laid claim to their discovery. The existence 
of the lands south of the Marianas was well known ; but instead of endeavouring 
to fix their position, mariners rather avoided them, owing to the dangerous shoals 
by which they were surrounded. 

No serious attempt was made at an accurate survey till about 1686, when the 
first " Caroline," from which all the rest were named, was discovered by the 
pilot Lazeano. This was perhaps Yap, or else Farroilep (Farraulep), which 
lies on the meridian of the Marianas some 340 miles south of Guam. Then 
Cantova prepared the first rough chart of the region round about Lamurek 
(Namurck) in the central part of the archipelago ; but the scientific exploration of 
the Caroline Sea was first undertaken by Wilson and Ibargoita towards the close 
of the eighteenth century. Between 1817 and 1828 occurred the memorable 
expeditions of Kotzebue, Freycinet, Duperrey, Dumont d'TJrville and Lutke, after 
which nothing remained except to fill up the details and explore the interior of 
the several islands. This work of exploration has been stimulated by the question 
of sovereignty lately raised between SjDain and Germany, and finally settled by 
papal arbitration in favour of the former power. 

The names of the islands, islets and reefs strewn over the Caroline waters 
are far from being everywhere clearly defined. Except for some of the larger 
lands, such as Yap, Ponape and Ualan, custom has not yet decided between the 
native appellations variously pronounced by the seafarers of different nation- 
alities, and those given to the difEerent groups by English, French, or Russian 

Most of the Carolines are of coral formation, upheaved some few yards above 
sea-level, and many lack sufiicient vegetable humus for trees to strike root between 
the fissures of the rocks. Some, however,, have gradually been clothed with dense 
verdure down to the water's edge, and here native settlements have been formed 
beneath the shade of the cocoanut palm, the bread-fruit tree and the dark green 
barringtonia. Some of the groups form perfectly regular atolls, where lagoons 
accessible to boats through narrow channels are encircled by a verdant fringe. 
Satoan, one of the circular islands of the Mortlock group, consists of no less than 
sixty islets, some a few miles long, others mere pointed rocks, but all disposed 
symmetrically round the periphery of the coralline enclosure. Others again, such 
as Ruk, Ualan, and Ponape .(2,860 feet), attain considerable elevations, and these 
are often clothed to their summits with magnificent trees of few species, con- 
spicuous amongst which are the superb tree-ferns. This evergreen forest vegeta- 
tion is supported by copious rains, which fall on the slopes of the hills especially 
during the south-west monsoon. 

The fauna, like that of the Marianas, is extremely poor, the mammals being 
represented only by a dog with pointed ears and long pendent tail, and a single 
species of rat, which is said to have taught the natives the art of obtaining palm- 
wino by gnawing the crests of the cocoanut palm to get at its sap. The vegetation 



also affords shelter to some lizards and iguanas, while the sandy beach is visited 
by turtles during the season. 

The population of the Carolines is variously estimated at from twenty thousand 
to thirty thousand souls, two-thirds of whom are concentrated in Ruk, Ponaj^e 

Fig. 124. — EiTK Islands. 
Smle 1 ; Sm.OOO. 

BOO Ftithoms and 

and Yap. Owing to its proximity to the Philippines, Yap has been chosen as the 
centre of the administration for the Western Carolines and the Pelew Islands. 
Although the great majority of the natives are of Indonesian stock crossed by 
sundry foreign elements, the various insular groups present considerable contrasts 


in their physical appearance. The western islanders with their fair complexion 
resemble the Yisayas and Tagals of the Philippines ; those of the central islands 
have a red coppery colour, while farther east the natives of the Seniavin group 
are almost black and like the Papuans. In TJalan they are still darker, with 
slightly crisp hair. The people of Nukunor and Satoan are descendants of 
Samoau immigrants, as is evident from their physique, language and usages. 
Lastly, in some of the islands the European element is already so strong that most 
of the children present a type approaching that of the whites. 

The population has certainly decreased since the arrival of the Europeans, but 
not, as has often been asserted, in virtue of some mysterious and inevitable law 
affecting inferior races. Epidemics little dreaded in the "West doubtless become 
terrible scourges in Oceania, and such is the terror caused by measles, for instance, 
that in Yap and elsewhere the people combine to attack the infected villages, 
and stamp out the plague by killing the victims and compelling the others to 
withdraw for some weeks to the interior. Nevertheless the maladies introduced 
by foreign sailors do not suffice to explain the disappearance of the race, which 
has suffered still more from the raids of these foreigners, who carry off the natives 
to work on the plantations in Fiji and other archipelagoes. After the Caroline 
Islanders have thus been swept away, philosophic travellers indulge in meditations 
on the fatality which dooms the so-called inferior races to perish at contact with 
the civilised whites. Nevertheless there are certain favoured spots such as Lukunor, 
" pearl of the Carolines," in the Mortlock group, where the population is even 
rapidlv increasing by the natural excess of births over the mortalitj', and where 
every inch of the land is carefully ciiltivated. 

Taken as a whole, the Caroline natives are a mild, hospitable, industrious, and 
peaceful race. They allow their women much freedom, treat their children with 
great tenderness and faithfully observe the laws of friendship, comrades becoming 
brothers by an interchange of names. In certain places, notably Ualan, the 
people had no weapons of any sort, no strife or warfare. They even still lead 
simple, peaceful lives, except in the neighbourhood of the factories and missions, 
where their habits have been modified by contact with Europeans. Tattooing is 
extensively practised, the systems varying greatly according to the localities, 
tribes, and social position. Some of the chiefs and nobles are further distinguished 
by badges such as the white shell worn on the hand by the aristocratic families in 
Yap, where combs of orange-wood and ebony are reserved for the free men. 

Their food consists chiefly of the rima or bread fruit, the taro {arum csculeiifHin), 
the sweet jjotato introduced from the Philippines, iish and other marine fauna. 
They cultivate no rice, which the j^lantcrs are said to have vainly attempted to 
introduce into the archipelago. The dwellings, in general much smaller and far less 
commodious than those of Melanesia and Papuasia, are in many places mere roofs 
of foliage resting on the ground and entered on all fours through openings afc 
both ends. But every village possesses one spacious and more carefully con- 
structed building, which serves at once as a boat-house, a hostelry for strangers, a 
refuge during rainy weather, and a playroom for the children. Although they 



purchase hatcliets, saws, and knives from tlie traders, tlie people Lave scarcely 
yet outlived the stone age, most of their implements still consisting of shells, fish- 
bones and the like. 

In the eastern islands the American missionaries, vrho arrived in 18-19, have- 

Fig. i2o. — Yat. 

Sc-Ue 1 : 350,000. 

Essb on G 

Submarine Reefs. 

converted some thousands of the natives ; hut hundreds have returned to their 
ancestral practices, while in the western groups the prevailing religion is still 
animism associated with the worship of trees, of mountains, of everything that 
lives and moves, the fear of the spirits of air, and homage paid to their forefathers. 


Mucli veneration is shown for the dead and for those animals, such as lizards and 
eels, into whose bodies they are supposed to have migrated. The Polynesians of 
Nukunor and Satoan are the only natives who have carved wooden idols before 
which they prostrate themselves in solemn adoration. But the religious rites vary 
greatly in the different islands, and in respect of customs and institutions the 
Caroline tribes are broken into endless fragments. Even some of the smaller 
islands are divided into " several kingdoms " incessantly at war, or else maintaining 
an " armed peace." Most of the chiefs succeed by hereditary right, while others 
are elected by their peers. They are usually regarded as owners of the common 
territory, and most of the produce is their property. 

Although since Eurojiean skijajjers have monopolised the trade of the Pacific 
islands, they have ceased to make distant voyages in their famous outriggers, the 
natives of the Carolines are still daring navigators, for whom the deep has no 
terrors. Their pilots are able to navigate the high seas guided only by the stars 
and the direction of the waves. Formerly they maintained schools of navigation 
and astronomy, where the young of both sexes were, taught the relative position of 
the constellations, the hours of the rise, azimuth, and setting of the stars, the 
revolutions of the planets, the course of winds and currents, the divisions of the 
circle, the direction of remote archipelagoes from the Philippines in the west to 
Hawaii in the east. The horizon was divided into twelve, and even twenty-eight 
and thirty-two arcs of a circle, and in some atolls there were sj)ecial names for 
thirty-three stars or stellar groups by which they- were guided on the boundless 
ocean. They visited the Marianas, over 250 miles distant, without any intermediate 
station and even against cross currents. The pilots of the Caroline and Marshall 
groups possess the so-called nieclos, a sort of chart ingeniously constructed with 
shells or pebbles to represent islands, and bits of stick for the equator, the meridian, 
the route to follow, the degrees or periods of navigation and the cross currents. 
They understand the compass almost at a glance, and soon learn to make long 
voyages by the magnetic needle. 

Tajj (Vap, Giiap), the large island lying nearest to the Philippines, is the most 
Europeanised in the archipelago. The centre of government for the Western 
Carolines and Pelew group is stationed at Tamil, near the chief roadstead ; here 
also are settled the foreign traders, mostly Germans, who export copra and 
beche-de-mer. The natives, formerly much given to trade, have lost nearly all 
their traffic, and profit little by the movement of exchanges. For currency they 
still use shells and other objects pierced with holes and strung together, like the 
Chinese coins. 

Ponape, largest and formerly most populous of the Carolines, is likely to 
acquire great importance as a re- victualling station for shipping ; several ports 
accessible through passages piercing the reefs are sheltered by the encircling 
barrier, and the foreign traders have already extensive plantations on the island. 
On the coralline clifEs near the east side are seen the remains of prehistoric struc- 
tures consisting of thick walls which are built of huge basalt columns placed 
horizontally, and measuring from 26 to 36 feet in length. The natives have no tradi- 



tions associated with these ruins, several of which are partly submerged, the land 
having subsided since the time of their erection. 

But the chief edifices raised by the former inhabitants of the Carolines are 
those found in Ualan at the eastern extremity of the archipelago, and especially in 
the adjacent islet of Lele. Here some of the walls, 20 feet high and over 12 broad, 
are formed of enormous basalt blocks brought from great distances. Several of 

Fig. 1-2S.— PONAPE. 
Scale 1 : 100,0130. 

Submarine EeefB. 

the ruins, now overgrown with vegetation, appear to rise above the reefs like 
verdant islets. 

Ualan is the central station of the American missionaries, whose posts are 
scattered over the surrounding groups. Although Catholicism is the only Christian 
cult permitted by the colonial administration, the Spanish Government has been 
compelled by a revolt of the natives to recognise the accomplished fact and to 
leave these converts the fi'ee exercise of their Protestant relic-ion. 


lY. — Eastern Micronesia : Marshall, Gilbert, and Ellice Archipelagoes. 

These gi'Ouj)S, which stretch east of the Carolines about 2,-500 miles trans- 
A'ersolj^ to the equator, all belong to the same geological formation, and are all 
disijosed in the same direction. From the geograiihical standpoint they should be 
studied together, although inhabited by different ethnical populations. The Ellice 
and part of the Gilbert Islands are in this respect Polynesian lands, while the 
more important Marshall groujj belongs to Micronesia. 

I'olitically also thej- form different areas, being already distributed ofEcially 
amongst two European powers. The Marshalls, whose trade is monopolised by 
Hamburg merchants, form part of the German colonial empire, whereas in 1886 
the Gilbert and Ellice Archipelagoes were declared to lie within the sphere of 
British interests. But were priority of discovery to confer any right of possession, 
all shoiild certainly be assigned to Spain. The San Bartolomeo sighted by Loyasa 
in 1525 was probably one of the Marshalls ; but in any case the " Jardines," so 
named by Alvaro de Saavedra in 1529, certainly belonged to this group, as did 
also the Pescadores visited by other navigators during tke sixteenth century. In 
1567 Mendana de Neyra also sailed through the southern Ellice group. None of 
these islands, however, were exactly determined before the systematic exploration 
of the Pacific two centuries later. 

In 1767 Wallis firsPsurveyed two members of the Pescadores ; then Marshall 
and Gilbert, returning from Port Jackson in 1788, traversed these regions of 
Eastern Micronesia, and studied in detail the position and form of tlie groups 
henceforth known by their names. Other designations, however, have also been 
given them, and the Gilbert, for instance, have been called the Kingsmill and the 
Line Islands. Marshall and Gilbert were followed by other English navigators, 
and then at the close of the Napoleonic wars Kotzebue and Chamisso made their 
memorable expedition through the Micronesian atolls on board the Russian vessel, 
the Iturik. In 1823 Duperrey also visited two important members of the Marshall 
group, and since then interesting memoirs have been jjublished by traders and 
missionaries long resident in various parts of these archipelagoes, whose collective 
area may now be estimated at about 350 square miles, with a total population of 
fifty-five thousand. 

Nearly all the islands in the three archipelagoes, which rest on a common 
marine bed less than 900 fathoms deep, are disjwsed in the direction from north- 
west to south-east. A moderate ui^heaval of this bed would unite them all with 
the Samoan Archipelago in a long narrow stretch of dry land. "With the excep- 
tion of three or four islands probably upheaved by igneous action, all the Marshall, 
Gilbert, and Ellice groups are of low coralline formation, rising little more than 
five or six feet above sea-level, except where shifting dunes have been formed by 
the winds. 

Some of these coral islands have been united by the marine alluvia in conti- 
nuous lands without break or lagoons. But most of them are atollts with an outer 
circuit of islets and reefs, and a central lagoon offering shelter to boats, and some- 




times even to large vessels. From the peculiar cliaracter of this formation the 
EUice group has even been called the " Lagoon Islands," and is habitually so 
named by the missionaries. Seen from a distance all generally present much the 
same aspect : below, the white zone of breakers ; above, a fringe of green foliage. 
In all these low-lying clusters the highest land is an eminence in Pleasant Island, 
one of the Gilberts, which is scarcely 230 feet high. 

Most of the Marshal' and Gilbert atolls are remarkable for their eccentric forms. 

Fig. 127. — Aehno. 
Scale 1 : 275,000. 

Eas'tor breenwicW 


Very few are circular, a fixct doubtless due to the irregularity of the igneous founda- 
tions on which the coral-builders have raised their structures. Triangles and 
trapezes prevail in the Marshalls, where Arhno resembles a bull's head and horns, 
while others are suggestive of such curious objects as shuttles, stirrups, or harps. 
Nearly all the atolls have continuous fringing reefs on the east side alone, the 
west side being traced only by a line of white surf. The reason of the contrast is 
not difficult to understand. On the west face the slow and sluggish waves roll 

VOL. XIV. u 



over the reefs without destroying them, whereas ou the east the far more furious 
breakers displace and heap up huge fragments, which are gradually bound together 
in a compact mass by the shells and sands. The seeds of plants drifting with the 
current strike root on the ground thvis prepared : shrubs spring up and in course 
of time the reefs are covered with dense forest. Of all these wooded atolls Maraki 

Fig-. 128. — Maeshall Aechipelago. 
Scale 1 : 8,fi5O.0OO. 


2,000 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

in the Gilbert group is the most picturesque. Seen from the mast-head it looks 
like a green garland floating on the blue waters ; here also nearly all the islets 
have become united in a single unbroken ring. 

The climate of the Marshalls is one of the most delightful in the oceanic world. 
Here the normal tropical heats are tempered by the north-east winds which pre- 
vail rrgu'arly from November to February, and which at other times are replaced 


by breezes from the east and south-east, or else internipted by calms. Storms are 
to be dreaded chiefly in October and November. Being also further removed 
from the continents than the Marianas and Carolines, the Marshall group eujoys a 
more oceanic climate. 

At the same time its flora and fauna are much poorer, although still compara- 
ti\ely rich for lands of coralline origin. To the fifty-nine species of plants found 
in the archipelago by Chamisso subsequent explorers have scarcely added any new 
forms; one alone seems jDeculiar to the Marshal'ls. The most useful plant is the 2)an- 
danus odonitmhnu^, of which there are some twenty varieties, and from which the na- 
tives derive their chief nourishment. Both the pandahus and the bread-fruit tree 
grow to greater perfection here than in any other oceanic region. There are also 
several distinct varieties of the cocoa-nut palm ; but this plant is less used for food 
since the development of the export trade in copra and cocoa-nut oil. 

There are no indigenous mammals or birds ; but the goats, jjigs, and cats intro- 
duced from Em-ope have multijjlied rapidly, and the domestic poultry have reverted 
to the wild state. 

The indigenous populations become gradually modified in the direction from 
north to south. Thus the natives of the Marshalls resemble those of the Carolines, 
and like them belong to the Micron'esian group, whereas the people of Ellice are 
of nearly pure Polynesian stock, Kke those of the eastern archipelagoes. Between 
these extremes stand the Gilbert islanders, of mixed descent but fimdamentally 
]Micronesians. They are the finest race in this oceanic region, tall, sometimes 
even gigantic, often with quite European features, and occasionally acquiring a 
somewhat Jewish cast from their slightly aquiline nose. Except in the remoter 
islands not yet vjsited by the missionaries the old dress — a loin-cloth and fringes 
— as well as the practice of tattooing have been abolished, and the few ornaments 
now worn are flowers or foliage inserted in the pierced lobe of the ear, bird's 
feathers and necklaces. 

In 1817, when Chamisso explored the Marshall group, the natives, still free 
from the influence of traders and missionaries, seemed to be possessed of high 
qualities, intelligence and enterprise. Everywhere was presented a picture of 
IJcace, love of work, and domestic harmony, combined with a strong sense of 
equality, even in the presence of the chiefs. Yet these pojiulations, which seemed 
to give promise of a prosperous future, are preciselj' amongst those that have most 
rapidly declined. The young are carried off by consumption ; all initiative is 
killed by the introduction of European wares ; there is no longer any necessity 
for exercising the faculty of thought, and listlessncss takes the place of an active 
life. In some of the islands not a single article of native manufacture is now to be 
found, and here the villages resemble the wretched suburbs of some American 

Traditions still survive of former cannibal i^ractices, at least in some of the 
groups. Other sanguinary rites also prevailed, as in the Ratak Isles, where the 
mother was allowed to keep her three first children ; if a fourth was born she had 
to bury it with her own hands. But much tenderness was shown for the 


survivors, who, in case of the mother's death, were at once adopted into other 
families. In general the wife was much, respected, the men performing all the 
hard manual labour, and leaving to the women notliing hut the preparation of 
food and the weaving of sails and matting. 

Their religion was little more than a kind of spirit-worship, and the temples 
were merely a square space between four stones, or under the shade of a rock or 
some high tree. The influence of the priests was but slight compared to that of 
the chiefs, most of whom enjoyed absolute power. Hager speaks of a ruler who, 
having learnt the alphabet, beheaded all those whose progress was more rapid than 
his own. The social hierarchy is clearly defined. Under the iroiij, or royal class, 
from whom are selected the kings in the female line, come the nobles, the land- 
owners, and last of all the j)oor, who may be deprived of the land they cultivate 
without compensation, and who are restricted to one wife. Amongst this proleta- 
riate class were till recently recruited the labourers for the plantations in Samoa. 
But in the Marshall archipelago the population has so greatly fallen off that 
scarcely sufficient hands now remain for the cultivation, of their own palm- groves. 
Even in the barren and relatively more populous Gilbert group the supply of 
living freights has been nearly exhausted. 

Since 1864 European traders have been settled in the Marshall Islands. 
Although mostly representing German houses, they have to compete with the 
missionaries, as well as with English, American, Hawaiian, New Zealand, and 
even Chinese dealers. In order to secure their commercial preponderance against 
these rivals, they induced the German government to extend its "protection" to 
the archipelago in 1885. To this protectorate were added the two little groups 
of the Brown (Eniwetok) and Providence Islets, which, according to the conven- 
tion with Spain, should rather have been included in the zone of the Caroline 

Jalitit has become the administrative centre of the German possessions, as it 
had already been the commercial centre of the Carolines, the Gilbert and all other 
groups in these waters. Plantations and factories have also been established in 
Milli, Namorek, Arhno, Majuro, Likieb, Ebon, and elsewhere. The religious 
stations are chiefly under the direction of Hawaiian missionaries, who are much 
disliked by the traders. Conflicting interests have given rise to dissensions, 
which have in aU cases been settled by the protecting power in favour of the 
Jaluit dealers. 

North of the Marshalls are scattered a few clusters, which should be regarded 
as belonging, if not to the same groups, at least to the same geographical zone. 
Such amongst others is Cornwallis or Gaspar Rico. The islets and reefs following 
in the direction of Japan are separated by abysmal depths from the subiuuriue 
bank above which rise the Marshall atolls. 

In the Appendix will be found a table of all these archipelagoes, with their 
respective areas and populations. 




^ HIS vast region owes the appellation of New Guinea, conferred on it 
by the Spanish explorer, Ifiigo Ortiz de Retis, in 1545, to the 
resemblance observed by him between its inhabitants and those of 
Guinea on the West African seaboard. Next to Australia it is 
the largest continental mass in the Pacific, and exceeds even Borneo 
in extent. From the north-west to the south-east extremity the distance in a 
straight line is nearly 1,500 miles, exclusive of the groups and chains of islands 
by which the mainland is continued in both directions. At the broadest part it is 
over 400 miles from north to south, and the total area is estimated at 314,000 
square miles, or 326,000 including the Aru Islands and other adjacent groups" 
scattered like fragments round a shattered continent. 

New Guinea, which is thus half as large again as France, seems destined to 
take an important part in the future evolution of the oceanic lands, for it is abun- 
dantly watered and rich in various natural resources. Hitherto, however, it has 
remained almost entirely excluded from civilising influences. The fringing reefs, 
marshy coastlands, dense forests, and even its very vastness have protected it from 
white intruders, while the scattered indigenous populations, divided into endless 
hostile tribes, have nowhere merged in a compact nationality. 

Progress of Discovery. 

But although still unexplored to any great extent, Papuasia has already been 
partitioned amongst three European powers. Holland, which had laid claim to the 
whole island for over half a century, is henceforth recognised as mistress of the 
western section as far as 14P east longitude, while the rest of the territory has 
been divided between England and Germany by the treaty of 1885. To England 
is assigned the south-eastern slope, facing Torres Strait ; to Germany the northern 
seaboard washed by the Pacific. 

The honour of having discovered New Gxiinea belongs to none of its present 
political rulers. A letter addressed bv the Florentine Corsali in 1515 to Julian doi 



Medici mentions the existence of a very extensive region stretching east of the 
Moluccas, and the reference was probably to Papuasia. But most historians 
attribute its actual discovery, or at least that of some of its contiguous islands, to 
the Portuguese Jorge de Menezes. The " good haven of Versiya," where this 
navigator wintered in 1526-27, was perhaps the present Warsai, near the north- 
west extremity of the mainland. But, however this be, there can be no doubt as to 
the direction followed by Menezes's immediate successor, the Spaniard Alvaro de 
Saavedra. In 1528 this explorer cast anchor near an " island of gold," which seems 
to be one of those situated in Geelvink Bay, and the following year he coasted a 
land south of the equator, which extended south-eastwards across several degrees 
of longitude, and which was certainly the New Guinea seaboard. Sixteen years 
later Retis gave this region the name it now bears, and took j^ossession of it for 

Fig. 129. — Chief Exploeations on the Coasts and in the Interioe of New Guinea. 
Scale 1 : 24,000,000. 

h?jsb oF Green 

the Spanish crown. At that time, however, it was still uncertain whether it was 
an island or a part of the Australasian mainland. Doubtless some charts dating 
from the sixteenth century already represent Papuasia as an island ; but on others, 
notably that of Valentijn, prepared in the eighteenth century, it still figures as a 
part of Australia. 

Yet its insular character had already been practically demonstrated in 1G06 by 
the Spanish pilot, Torres, who had penetrated into the dangerous strait named 
from him, and who had at the same time surveyed the south coast of New Guinea. 
But this discovery, carefully concealed as a state secret in the archives of Manilla, 
had at last been forgotten by the Spaniards themselves. It was again brought to 
light, however, by Dalrymplc during the temporary occupation of Manilla by the in 17(i2 ; and in 1770, Cook, resuming the itinerary of the Spanish navi- 
gator, traversed the strait which he supposed he was the first to visit. Henceforth 


the great island assumed on the charts a form somewhat approaching- its real outlines. 

.mm jr 

During the interval, various parts of the seaboard had been coasted by other 


mariners, such as William Jansz, who, in IGOO, reached Ihe Aru Archipelago and 
the south-west side of New Guinea. Ten years later, Le Mairc and Schoutcn 
discovered the Schoutcn Islands, north of Geelvink Bay, and in 1G23 Carstensz 
advanced as far as Valsche Kaap at the extremity of the island of Frederik 
Hendrik. Other seafarers, amongst whom Tasraan, also visited the north and 
south coasts : yet, at the close of the seventeenth century, Papuasia was still so 
little known that its western end was quite wrongly described by Rumphius, who 
even extends it to the north of the equator. 

Attention was again attracted to the great island by the fear that the English 
might succeed in founding settlements on the seaboard and deprive the Dutch 
Company of their monopoly of the spice trade. Dampier had, in fact, already 
coasted the north side, and determined the independent insular character of the 
New Britain and New Ireland Archipelagoes. Hence Wijland was despatched to 
the same waters, and the northern seaboard was traced to its eastern extremity, 
and even beyond it to the Massim or Louisiade Archipelago, which was at that 
time supposed to form part of the mainland. Yet old Spanish charts studied by 
E. T. Ilamy and carefully compared with the Dutch documents, show that Torres 
and his precursors in the sixteenth ccnturj^ had already determined, in a general 
way, the form of the eastern section of New Guinea. 

The era of modern exploration in these regions begins with Cook's expedition. 
Before the close of the eighteenth century, Forrest, MacCluer, and d'Entrecas- 
teaux si;/veyed long stretches of the seaboard. But the Napoleonic wars inter- 
rupted these peaceful operations, which were not resumed till the general pacifica- 
tion. Duperrey, Dumont d'Urville, and Belcher were amongst the first navigators 
who then found their way to the New Guinea waters. Kolff sailed through the 
strait between the island of Frederik Hendrik supposing it to be a river, and in 
1828, this explorer founded on Triton Bay, over against the Aru Archipelago, the 
first military station occupied by Europeans on the Papuan seaboard. Fort Bus, 
afterwards abandoned owing to the insalubrity of the district, was thus the com- 
mencement of the work of annexation, which has since been prosecuted slowly but 
irresistibly. In the same year, 1828, the Dutch Government officially announced 
the formal possession of the great island as far as 141° east longitude, substituting 
throughout that region the sovereignty of Holland for that of her vassal, the 
sultan of Tidor. 

Meanwhile the greater part of the interior remains still imexplored. Learned 
naturalists, such as Jukes, Wallace, Cerruti, Beccari, d'Albertis, Bernstein, Meyer, 
Raffray, and Forbes, have already penetrated at different points considerable dis- 
tances inland. But despite these isolated efforts, the physical features of the land, 
with its popidations, products, and natural resources, still remain almost less 
known than those of any other region of the globe. Long journeys are rendered 
extremely difficult, and often impossible bj^ the malarious climate of the coastlands, 
ihe total absence of stations on the breezy plateaux of the interior, and the often 
too well grounded hostility of the natives, who justly distrust the white strangers 
coming with a revolver in one hand and a bottle of brandy in the other. To complete 


tic work of disco vciT without friction, explorers are needed, such as Mikhikho !^^ak- 
lay, whose rule of conduct was to be ever discreet, forbearing, truthful in his dealings 
with the aborigines, and who, in the midst of imminent perils, alwaj's remained 
faithful to his resolutions. But such heroes are rare, and there are few who have 
" demonstrated by experience that in every part of the world man is still human, 
that is to say, a sociable being, possessed of good qualities, with whom it is right 
and possible to enter into relations on a footing of mutual justice and kindness." 
— {Letter of Tolstoi to Miklukho Mahlay.) 

Physical Features of New Guixea. 

New Guinea has nothing of the massive, form characterising the Australian 
continent, which it separates from the equatorial waters. It has been compared 
to a gigantic bird whose head is represented by the north-west peninsula, the neck 
b}- the narrow isthmus between Geelvink Bay and Etna Bay, the tail by the 
south-eastern prolongation fringed by numerous little parallel peninsulas resem- 
bling the plumage. The surrounding waters are so shallow on the south side that 
a sudden subsidence of some fifty fathoms would suffice to connect Papuasia with 
Australia ; while the Louisiade Archipelago would form a continuation of the 
mainland towards the south-east. But in other directions its shores are encircled 
by profound chasms of over one thousand fathoms, such as the Nares Trough on 
the north side, and the Carpenter. Trough (1,320 fathoms) between the Louisiades 
and the great Barrier Reef of East Australia. Even the narrow channel separat- 
ing New Britain from the north-east coast is over 500 fathoms deep. 

At the north-west extremity some islands of considerable size, such as Mysol, 
Salwaty, Batanta, and Waigiu, indicate the beginning of the relief which on the 
mainland rises to great elevations. The Arfak hills, which skirt the north side of 
the Berau Peninsula, terminate at the entrance of Geelvink Bay in a precipitous 
headland, 9,520 feet high. The Gulf of Berau, better known as MacCluer Inlet 
from the navigator who explored it at the end of the last century, penetrates 
over 120 miles inland, almost completely separating the north-western peninsula 
from the rest of the great island. The two regions are connected only by a 
narrow range of hills, and even these were recently supposed hj Strachan to be 
pierced at one point by a channel flowing between Geelvink Bay and Mac- 
Cluer Inlet. But the naturalist, A. B. Meyer, who had crossed from sea to sea, 
had already demonstrated the non-existence of any such communication. Accord- 
ing to the missionary Geiseler, who resided, in 1867, in a village on the isthinus, 
boats may cross from coast to coast by utilising two streams flowing in opposite 
directions between the rocky water-parting, which is, at one point, only "a quarter 
of a mile " broad. It is uncertain, however, whether the " mile " in question is 
German or English. 

South of JIucCluer Inlet the seaboard is indented bj- the deep Arguni Bay, a 
long, narrow, fjord-like formation winding between the steep escarpments of the 
surrounding: hills. The Onin Peninsula enclosed between these two inlets stands at 



a considerable mean elevation, though still lower than the Beraii uplands, with but 
few svimmits exceeding 3,500 feet. Farther east rise the superb crests of Genoffo 
(4,915 feet), at the entrance of Arguni Bay, and Lamansieri (2,450 feet), at the 
foot of which are the ruins of Fort Ikis. 

Beyond this point the coast-range is again interrupted by other inlets, such as 
Triton and Etna bays ; but farther cast it merges in the loftiest mountain range 
not only in New Guinea, but in the whole oceanic world. This system, which is still 
very imperfectly explored, begins at Cape Burn with the Lakahai headland (4,500 
feet), after which follow eastwai'ds a succession of crests continually increasing in 
altitude and rising even above the snow line, one of the glittering peaks having an 
elevation of 1G,750 feet. These snowy summits, to which has been given the 

Fig. 131. — Mountains of New Guinea. 

Scale 1 : 24,000,000. 

2,000 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

name of Charles Louis in ignorance of their native appellation, are probably con- 
tinued eastwards to the crests seen by d'Albertis to the north of the Fly Eiver 
basin, and are doubtless connected either by lofty plateaux or by other highlands 
with the ranges skirting the north coast. Here JMount Gaiitier or Tabi attains an 
altitude of 6,500 feet ; Moixnt Cyclops, farther east, is nearly as high, while the 
system terminates opposite New Britain in the mountains, 11,500 feet high, to 
which the French navigators have given the name of Finisterre. The last head- 
lands present in many places the aspect of regular fortifications, the step-like 
ramparts being formed of old coral beaches successively upheaved at various 
geological epochs. Earthquakes are of most frequent occurrence in this region of 
the mainland, which lies nearest to the volcanoes of Melanesia. 

The orography of tlie south-eastern peninsula has been more extensively eur- 



\oytcl, thanks partly to the proximity of Australia, and partly to the more con- 
tracted form of this region, rendering it accessible to explorers penetrating inland 
from both coasts. Here the highlands lying within the territory annexed to the 
British colonial possessions have received English names. The north-west chain, 
under the same meridian as the Finisterrc highlands, begins with the Albert 
range, followed south-eastwards by Mounts Yule (10,000 feet) and Owen Stanley 
(1 0,200 feet). This twin-crested mountain, which dominates the whole peninsidar 
system, was first ascended in 1888 by the Australian explorer, Martin. 

Eastwards, the range gradually diminishes in height, and then branches off 

Kg. 132. — JMacClxter Inlet A^•D 0^^N Pexinsula. 
Scale 1 : 4,000,0110. 

. _^ 


80 Feet and 

into two ridges forming the extreme south-eastern fork of New Guinea, and reap- 
pearing at intervals in the Moresby and Massim (Louisiade) archipelagoes. The 
channel here separating the mainland from ITayter and the other eastern islands 
has received from Moresby the name of China Strait, because it offers a direct 
route for vessels plying between Aiistralia and China. The shores of this channel 
present some of the most enchanting scenery in the whole of Melanesia. Owen 
Stanley was the first to determine, in 1848, the completely insular character of the 
eastern archipelago. 

East of the China Strait, the south-east extremitj^ of New Guinea is continued 


seawards by a chain of reefs and islets which terminate 300 miles farther on 
in the Louisiade groiip. All these lands are disposed from west-north-west 
to east-south-east in a line with the main axis of New Guinea itself. South- 
east Island, the largest member of the Louisiades, is surrounded by reefs also dis- 
posed in the same direction. In the north the Calvados rocks run parallel with 
South-east Island towards Rossel Island, whilst Saint- Aignan is similarly disposed 
in the north-west. 

The Entrecasteaux group, lying north of the terminal peninsula of the main- 
land, has the same conformation, and serves as the base to a semicircle of reefs 
which encloses one of the largest lagoons in the tropical seas, often known by the 
name of the Lusencay Lagoon, from one of its reefs. Above this reef rise the 
Trobriand, Grandiere, and other clusters of islets, all of which lands probably at 
one time formed part of the mainland. The peninsula now terminating at the 
eastern headland of the Finisterre range no doubt formerly extended through the 
intervening reefs eastwards to the island of Muyu or Woodlark. 

Rivers and Islands of Neav Guinea. 

Although lying so near the somewhat arid Australian continent. New Guinea 
being situated in the equatorial zone and traversed by lofty ranges, which intercept 
the moisture-bearing clouds brought by both monsoons, receives a rainfall sufficient 
to feed several large rivers. Of these the most copious appear to be the Amberno, 
or Mamberan, and the Fly. The former, to which the Dutch have also given the 
name of Rochussen, drains the snowj^ Charles Louis range, and reaches the coast 
east of Geelvink Bay, where it develops a vast delta with numerous branches 
fringed by the nipa palm and casuarina. For a long distance seawards the water 
is white or greenish, and the mouths of the Amberno are avoided bj^ shipping 
through fear of the surrounding shallows. 

On the southern sloj)e the chief artery is the Fly river, discovered bj' Black- 
wood in 1845, and named after his vessel. This voluminous stream has been 
visited by Jukes, MacFarlane, and d'Albertis, the last of whom ascended it for a 
distance of about 500 miles to a point within sight of the lofty highlands where it 
has its origin. All the branches of its delta have not yet been explored, and it is 
still doubtful whether the numerous channels flowing south of the Fly exactly 
opposite the York peninsula, Australia, are independent streams or only branches 
of the delta. 

Islands of alluvial formation project seawards at the mouths of the rivers, but in 
many places the coast is fringed by coral islands, for the most part clothed with 
vegetation. Jlany of these being eroded by the waves look at a distance like 
masses of verdure suspended in mid air. Off the seaboard are also several large 
islands, which should be regarded as forming part of the mainland. Such are 
Korrido, Biak, and Jobie in Geelvink Bay, and on the south side Frederik Ilendrik 
(Frederick Henry), which is little more than an island in appearance. It is 
separated from the Klapper-Kust ( " Cocoa-n\it Coast " ) merely by a narrow 


winding canal, wliich unglit easily be blocked, by a snag or a sandbank. Several 
islets, especially in Torres Strait, are disposed in such a way as to form natural 
harbours, a fortunate provision for shipping in the vicinity of a rock-bound coast 
with but few inlets, and for hundreds of miles destitute of a single sheltering 

According to Wallace the Aru Archipelago must also be considered, like 
Fredeiik Ilendrik, as a part of New Guinea, separated from the mainland only by 
shallow waters. The river-like channels by which it is intersected and disposed 
in regular blocks like the quarters of a city seem to indicate that this archipelago 
was formerly a marshy plain, whose channels represent the branches of the rivers 
by which it was traversed before its separation from the mainland by a slight sub- 
sidence of about 300 feet. " When the intervening land sank down we must 
suppose the land that now constitutes Aru to have remained nearly stationary, 
a not very improbable supposition, when we consider the great extent of the 
shallow sea, and the very small amount of depression the land need have undergone 
to produce it." * 

Climate — Flora — Fauna. 

Tlianks to its geographical position, under the same mean latitude as Sumatra, 
Papuasia is essentially a hot and moist region, without great oscillations of tempera- 
ture, without excessively prolonged rains or droughts. This region has neither 
the cold nor the sultry heats of Australia, and observers have recorded no tcmpera- 
tui-cs higher than 89° Fahr. or lower than 68° Fahr.f 

As in the eastern archipelago, the alternation of the seasons is regulated bj' 
the trade winds, which, for a portion of the year, set regularly from south-east 
to north-west, and at other times veer round to different quarters according to the 
various centres of attraction. The lofty ranges by which the island is divided into 
two precipitous areas of drainage also cause a sharp contrast between the succession 
of the seasons on either side. During the winter of the northern hemisphere, 
from November to April, when the vapoui's of the Pacific are brought by the 
north-east trade wind, the slopes facing northwards receive an abundant rainfall, 
while droughts, varied by a few occasional showers, prevail on the opposite side 
turned towards Australia. During the other half of the year the south-east trades, 
which are always accompanied bj^ rains, blow steadily on the south-east seaboard, 
that is, on all that part of the island which is not sheltered by the Australian 
continent. West of Torres Strait this continent again modifies the direction of 
the normal currents which come from the south-west and west, and which also 
bring a considerable quantity of moisture from the Indian Ocean. During this 

* A. R. Wallace, The Malay Archipelago, chap, xxxiii. 

t ObservatioDs made by Miklukho Maklay at Hermitage Point (5" 23' S. lat ; 145° 40' E. long.) : — 

Highest Temperature ...... 88° F. 

Lowest ,, 70° F. 

Mean „ 80° F. 

Rainy Days 150 

Rainfall 94 inches. 


period the phenomena are reversed on the northern slojjes, the lofty X)wen Stanley 
range completely interceijting- the south-east trade, and producing calms or 
variable breezes in the sheltered waters north of Papuasia. 

Half Australian in some of its aspects, New Guinea presents a less varied flora 
than Indonesia, although the western peninsula seems to belong to the same zone 
as the Moluccas. Here are found the nutmeg and other Moluccan plants, while 
the acacias and eucalyj)tus of the eastern regions recall the neighbouring continent 
of Australia. In general the two floras may be said to overlap each other in New 
Guinea, alternating with the dryness or moisture of the contrasting slopes. Where 
the slopes are exposed to droughts the prevailing forest trees are the eucalyptus 
and other Australian species, and here occur vast savannahs of the so-called 
" kangaroo grass," while the streams are fringed with the bread-fruit tree, the 
mango, pandanus, areca, and cocoa-nut palms. But there are also a large number 
of indigenous forms, and Beccari enumerated no less than fifty varieties of the 
palm peculiar to the great island. Amongst the more valuable local si^ecies is the 
sassafras goheianum, the bark of which yields the precious iiia^soi oil, so highly 
prized as a febrifuge in the Malay Archipelago. 

Notwithstanding the great diversity in their relief, climates, and general 
physical aspects. New Guinea and Australia jDresent remarkable resemblances in 
their respective faunas. On the one hand lofty mountains, rain-bearing winds, 
well-watered valleys, large rivers, vast ever-green woodlands ; on the other, 
boundless plains, whore waterless and stony tracts are varied by thorny scrub. 
Yet the mammalian fauna belongs to a common centre of dispersion, a fact which 
can be explained only by assuming a former continuity of land between both 
regions. The present Torres Strait by which they are now seiDarated is evidently 
a comparatively recent event in the history of the planet. 

The animals, however, have had to modify their habits in order to adapt them- 
selves to their different environments. Thus one of the New Guinea kangaroos, 
formerly a jumper, is now a climber. His tail has become smaller and covered 
with hair, his paws have been furnished with claws, and he moves from branch to 
branch with short springs. Instead of grazing he feeds on the rich foliage of the 
trees, but he is stiU rather awkward at climbing, and would soon be exterminated 
were the local forests infested by rapacious beasts. 

The whole mammalian fauna is limited to a pig, some bats, mice, and mono- 
tremes, with over thirty species of the characteristic marsupials, one of which is no 
bigger than a rat. The dingo, or wild dog, which everywhere accompanies the 
natives, came with them at some remote age from foreign lands ; like the Austra- 
lian dingo it never barks, it lives almost exclusivel}' on fruits and vegetables, and 
its flesh is said to be excellent. 

In its avifauna New Guinea partakes both of the Australian and Malaj^sian 
regions. In the north-west peninsula and neighbouring islands alone Wallace 
and other naturalists have enumerated at least two hundred and fifty species of 
land birds belonging to one hundred and eight genera, of which sixty-four are 
peculiar to the zone of Papuasia, the ^Moluccas, and North Australia. Some of 


these are remarkable for their beauty, original forms, and brilliant colours. Such 
are the (joura coronata, loveliest of the pigeon family ; the large black cockatoo 
and the nasiterna, the "giant and dwarf" of this tribe; lastly, the marvellous 
birds of paradise, called by the Malays the " birds of God," and formerly supposed 
to live always on the wing, ever-soaring heavenwards. They were also believed 
to have no feet, because the skins prepared for the Moluccan markets had the legs 
amputated, and even Linnaeus gave the name of puradisea upuda to the large 
variety. The cassowary is also found in New Guinea, but birds of prey are 
almost completely absent, and to this circumstance is due the development of so 
many other species with gorgeous plumage. Amongst the numerous reptiles occurs 
the curious chondropi/thon pukhcr, which forms the transition between the xVmerican 
boas and the pythons of Asia.. Although the exploration of New Guinea is still 
far from complete thousands of insects have been discovered, fully as remarkable as 
the birds for their surprising wealth of forms and genera. 

Inhahitants of New Guinea. 

The population of New Guinea, variously estimated at from half a million to 
two millions, comprises a very large number of groups differing greatly from each 
other in stature, complexion, shape of the skull and other physical features, as 
well as in their usages and mental qualities. Several tribes approach the Indo- 
nesian type, as found in Borneo and Celebes, while others resemble the Malaj's, 
and are described by travellers as belonging to this race. Wallace, Virchow, 
Hamy, d'Albertis, and other ethnologists also believe that the Negritoes are repre- 
sented in New Guinea as a distinct race, and not merely as degenerate I'apuaus, 
as supposed bj"^ A. B. Meyer and Miklukho Maklay. Communities of Polynesian 
origin are also numerous, especially in the south-eastern districts, and endless 
intermingUngs have taken place between contiguous groups. 

But, although there is no ethnical uniformity, as seemed probable from the 
reports of the early explorers, the Papuan element, whence the great island takes 
the name of Papuasia, certainly predominates over all others. This element is 
found almost unmixed on some parts of the north coast, and according to several 
authorities it even occurs in all parts of the Oceanic world. Formerly it reached 
as far as Hawaii and New Zealand, where it has been replaced by the Polynesian 

This term Papua, said by Crawford to be derived from the Malay expression 
pua-pita, that is, " black, black," is by most writers explained to mean " frizzl}'," 
from the natural texture of the hair, the trait by which most strangers are arrested. 
The natives give themselves no collective name, and the special appellations by 
which the various tribes are known are usually found to be of topographical origin. 
The languages, as niunerous as the tribal groups, are sufficiently distinct in many 
places to prevent the natives of neighbouring villages from understanding each 
other. According to Lawes no less than twenty-five idioms are current along the 
section of the southern seaboard stretchina' for about 300 miles to the cast of Torres 


Strait. The best-known native dialect is the Nofur (Nufor), of Dorey and the 
adjacent islands in Geelvink Bay. Some of those that have been hitherto studied, 
as, for instance, the Motu of the south-east coast, belong undoubtedly to the great 
]\Iala}'0-Polynesian linguistic family ; but it would be premature to assert that all 
the New Guinea languages are members of that widespread oceanic group. 

On the whole the Papuans are somewhat shorter than the Polynesians, the 
average height being about 62 to 64 inches. They are well-proportioned, lithe, 
and active, and display siirprising skill both in climbing trees and in using the 
feet for prehensile purjDoses. Most Papuans have a very dark skin, but never of 
that shiny black peculiar to the Shillvxks of the White Nile, the Wolofs of Senegal, 
and some other African peoples. The eyebrows are well marked, the eyes large 
and animated, the mouth large but not pouting, the jaw massive. Amongst the 
north-western Papuans, regarded by "Wallace as representing the type in its purity, 
the iiose is long, arched, and tipped downwards at the extremity, and this is a trait 
which the native artists never fail to reproduce in the human effigies with which 
they decorate their houses and boats. Another distinctive characteristic of nume- 
rous tribes is their so-called mop-heads, formed by superb masses of frizzly hair, 
no less abundant than that of the Brazilian Cafusos, and, as in their case, possibly 
indicating racial interminglings. But this feature is not constant any more than 
is the dolichocephalous, or narrow shape of the skull, although both are very gene- 
ral. In Mabiak and some other islands of Torres Strait the heads of the children 
are lengthened by artificial means almost to a point, and the young women of 
many tribes on the mainland carry loads supported by a strap round the forehead, 
which has the contrary effect of compressing the skull to a circular form. 

Some Papuans still go naked, but the majority wear at least a sort of bark loin- 
cloth or skirt of vegetable fibre, or else a rattan cane to which is suspended a 
shell or some foliage. Tattooing is not universal, nor do the Papuans, properly 
so-called, ever decorate themselves with designs and arabesques like the Poly- 
nesians. The tattooing is, moreover, generally effected by burns or incisions, and 
not by the pricking operation common amongst the mixed populations of the south- 
eastern districts. Bamboo combs are worn in the hair, little bits of stick or bone 
are passed through the cartilage of the nose, the body is also painted and orna- 
mented with earrings, bracelets, and pendants of bone, shells, polished pebbles, 
the vertebra) of fish, and even human teeth. In • sign of mourning they daub 
themselves in white, yellow, or black, according to the tribes, and the women of 
Katau, near the FI3' delta, express their grief by covering themselves from face to 
knees with a network of Kttle strings. 

Certain tribes on the shores of Astrolabe Bay studied by Miklukho Maklay are 
amongst the least civilised in Papuasia. Till recently they were unacquainted 
with metals, still using stone, shell, or wooden implements exclusively ; they were 
even incapable of producing fire, so that when the embers died out it had to be 
borrowed from the next-door neighbour. The old men assured the Russian 
traveller that till within a recent epoch fire was altogether unknown, and flesh 
was eaten raw, which caused scorbutic affections to prevail. Such is also probably 






still the state of culture amongst the iuland tribes cut off from all relations with 
the outer world ; but most of the populations dwelling on the seaboard, and visited 
by Malays, Bugis, or European and American seafarers, have long enjoyed a much 
higher degree of civili'sation. Some tribes are still exclusively hunters or fishers, 
whereas others till the land, making extensive clearings in the forests, where they 
plant the sago tree, surround their huts with bananas, sow maize, taro and tobacco, 
and even export their agricultural produce in exchange for European goods, 
especially arms and hardware. Till lately they used no weapons except stone- 
headed or poisoned darts and arrows, bamboo knives, bone daggers, wooden spears 
arid clubs. Some of the natives also possess musical instruments of primitive form, 
such as flutes, drums, and trumpets. 

However backward they may be in other respects most of the Papuans are 
2ndowed with a highly developed artistic feeling, and as carvers and sculptors they 
are far superior to most of the Malayan peoples. Having at their disposition 
nothing but bamboos, bone, banana leaves, bark and wood, they usually design and 
carve with the grain, that is, in straight lines. Nevertheless, with these primitive 
materials they succeed in producing extremely elegant and highly original decora- 
tive work, and even sculpture colossal statues representing celebrated chiefs and 
ancestors. Thanks to this talent they are able to reproduce vast historic scenes, 
and thus record contemporary events. Xumerous tribes have their annals either 
designed on foliage or depicted on rocks in symbolic writing. The skulls of the 
enemies slain in battle, which are carefully preserved to decorate the houses, are 
themselves often embellished with designs traced on masks made of wax and resin. 
On the banks of the Fly river these skulls are also used as musical instruments. 

All Papuan dwellings, even those of inland districts, are erected on rows of 
piles on the model of those insular villages which are surrounded by water at everv 
tide and inaccessible except by boats. These clusters of habitations, which from 
a distance look like upraised reefs of eccentric form, present a perfect picture of 
what the European lacustrine towns must have been some three or four thousand 
years ago. Stakes of unequal length sunk deep into the muddy bed of the shallow 
bays serve to support a flooring of planks interlaced with lianas and more or less 
polished with stone implements ; in the centre is the hearth formed by a bed of 
glazed earth, and in front runs a little verandah, serving as a playground for the 
children and a workshop for the fishermen. The houses are connected together 
by means of slight wooden galleries, along which the natives with their prehensile 
feet pass fearlessly, while underneath the crocodiles swim sluggishly about, 
attracted by the refuse of the kitchens. Now also European craft, and even small 
steamers, thread the mazes of these floating villages, casting anchor before the 
large building which serves at once as temple, hotel, exchange and market. In 
the interior the Papuans have preserved tbe same type of structure as on the sea- 

But the ingenuity of the natives is displayed above all in the construction of 
their boats. At the approach of bad weather they lash two, three, and even four 
of these praus in a single floating mass, which rises and falls with the waves with- 
voi.. xiv. X 


out ever founaering. Some of the latakoi, or tradiug craft, carry as many as six 
rectangular sails or large mats made with the bark of the sago palm, each sup- 
ported by two vertical masts springing from the gunwales of the praus. Other 
boats hoist only a single sail double the height of the mast, oval and hollowed out 
at top so as to leave two points, which at a distance resemble the horns of some 
prodigious animal gliding through the water. The natives also contrive to make 
simple canoes quite seaworthy by means of a platform which is attached at its two 
extremities to a pointed boom or spar serving the purpose of an outrigger. 

Although formerly much dreaded by passing seafarers, most of the New 
Gruinea peoples are of mild disposition and habits. The women are respected and 
the children treated with extreme kindness. The slaves, also, in the few districts 
where they exist, enjoy the same food and wear the same clothes as the free men. 
Homage is paid to the dead with flowers, songs, and ceremonies, but the funeral 
rites differ greatly in the different tribes. Some bury the deceased immediately 
after the "obsequies," others wait till the body has been dried by fire or the 
weather, while elsewhere the bones are distributed amongst the relatives, the son 
wearing his father's maxillary as an armlet. 

A very common practice is to sculpture the so-called kan-ars, that is, little 
figures representing the deceased, or rather the life that has escaped from them. 
At the son's death the karvar is planted on his grave, with his arms ; he is thus 
followed to the other world by his father's image, while he leaves his own to his 
children. The houses and boats, which serve as temples, are also decked with the 
effigies of their ancestors, the worship of whom, combined with that of the good 
and evil spirits dwelling in the trees, the rocks, the winds, and storms, constitutes 
the religion of all the aborigines. Mohammedanism, however, has already invaded 
the small archipelagoes off the west coast and even some parts of the mainland. 
Christian missionaries have also established stations at various points of the sea- 
board, which are at least becoming so many centres of civilising influences. 

Topography of New Goixea. 

The Dutch, as heirs of the Sultan of Tidor, who retains the nominal suzerainty 
without the right of levying tribute, are the ofiicial masters of west New Guinea 
as far as 141° E. longitude. But on this vast domain they do not possess a 
single town, whence their direct authority might be gradually extended over the 
interior. Thire are, however, a few ports of call visited aft more or less frequent 
intervals by their ships of war to protect the commercial operations of the few 
European traders, and especially to show their flag and maintain their authority 
in the eyes of the natives. 

At the north-west extremity of New Guinea the island of Walgpit, that is, 
" Land of Water," seems to be admirably situated to serve one day as a centre of 
trade for the insular populations of this region. The deep inlets indenting the 
south coast might afford shelter for whole fleets, while a magnificent roadstead is 
formed by the coralline islet of Gemien lying near the shore. Unfortunately 



T\'uigeu, although fertile and tliickly peopled, produces nothing for exportation. 
The natives, of mixed Malay and Papuan descent, are indolent, like all other 
islanders for whom the sago tree yields a superabundance of food with little effort 

Fig. 133. — Waiqeu, Batanta, and Salwatt. 
Scale 1 : 1,500,000. 

250 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

on their part. In the interior there are no independent Alfuru tribes, and all the 
inhabitants recognise the rajah, who resides at Samsam, at the head of the inlet by 
which the island is nearly divided into two parts. The isthmus of Fak-Fak 
connecting the two nearly equal sections is scarcely 200 feet high. But the most 

X 2 



frequented market in this western archipelago of New Guinea is Snniafe, at the 
north-east point of the ishmd of Salwaty. 

On the Dutch mainland the best-known and busiest station is Dorei, at the foot 
of the Arfak hills, at the entrance of Geelvink Bay. Close to the coast are three 

Fig. 134.— Dorei. 
Scale 1 : 900,000. 

50 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

pile villages sheltered on the north side by a wooded headland, and visited by a 
few Malay and European traders. Here is also a long- established missionary 
station ; but although well received by the natives, the preachers of the gospel 
have hitherto failed to form a small congregation of neophytes. 


The Papuans of Dorei are known by the name of JMafur or Nofur, a term 
supposed by some to have the same origin as the word Alf uru, which in Portuguese 
would have the meaning of "outsiders," or "savages." But Van Hasselt 
interprets it in the sense of " discoverers of fire," and these natives are justly 
proud of the sublime invention attributed by other peoples to the gods. The 
neighbouring highlands are occujiied by the Arfak people, much dreaded head- 
hunters, who have nevertheless given a friendly welcome to those travellers « ho 
ventured to visit them. 

West of Dorei on the north coast lies the station Amberhahen {Amherbaki) , that 
is, " Amber Land," which is inhabited by Papuans of the same stock as the 
Mafurs, and like them peaceful and friendly and even more skilful agriculturists. 
Their villages consist of very high cabins perched on the interlaced stems of the 
bamboo. The territory west of them is occupied by the Karons, one of the few 
New Guinea peoples who have not been unjustly accused. of cannibalism. They 
eat the bodies of their enemies slain in battle ; but they are probabU' not of 
Papuan race. Although averaging about 5 feet 4 inches in height, they would 
appear to belong to the same stock as the Negritoes of the Philippine Islands ; and 
according to the naturalist Raffray are characterised by robust, thick-set frames 
and limbs, large round head, very prominent superciliary arches, thick lips, broad 
flat features. They dress their frizzly hair in long tresses, which hang loosely over 
the temples and forehead, and practise a kind of tattooing with large raised welts. 

According to the Malays who have visited them, the Karons do not eat sago 
like the coastlanders, but feed on the sprouts of another palm that grows in a 
dry soil, and also devour all kinds of reptiles and insects. Thej^ are accused, 
though not on direct evidence, of eating their own offspring when all the slaves 
and captives have been consumed, leaving only two children to each family. 
Further south and more inland dwell the Gebars, who, like the peoples living on 
the shores of MacCluer Inlet, are also reputed cannibals. 

South of Dorei one of the most important coast villages is Wdirur, lying not 
far from the narrowest part of the isthmus, across which a portage might easily be 
established between the Geelvink and MacCluer Gulfs. This place is visited by 
Malay traders, who purchase the nutmegs here growing wild. Other stations 
follow round Geelvink Bay, such as Wandammen on the south and Arojjen 
( Waropen) on the east side. Then beyond the Amberno delta occur a few ports 
of call occasionally visited by Dutch skippers. But here the population is very 
scattered, and foreign trade has fallen off since the middle of the century. The 
dealers, following the usual plan of making advances to the natives in order to 
secure their produce beforehand at nominal prices, run the risk of being murdered 
by their debtors, and in some places do not venture even to land, but wait off the 
coast the arrival of the native craft laden with local produce. 

Humboldt Bay (Telokh Liutju), the easternmost inlet within Dutch territory, 
is inhabited by some of the rudest coast tribes in New Guinea. Such is their 
ignorance that they are even unable to extract the oil from the cocoanut.s that 
fringe all the western parts of the bay. 


Along the whole of this seaboard the mainland is less frequented than the 
adjacent islands. Those of Geelvink bay have each some busy markets, the most 
important of which is Aiisiis, on the south side of Jobi or Jappen. The inhabitants 
of the station greatly resemble the Mafurs of Dorei ; but the interior of the island 
is occupied by much-di-eaded savages, who are accused, rightly or wrongly, of 

On the Dutch territory facing the Moluccas the most frequented station is Sekaar, 
which stands on a small bay at the southern entrance of MacCluer Inlet. The 
traders from Ceram penetrate in this direction as far as the port of BJntuni in search 
of sago and nutmegs ; but they never venture to approach the northern shores of 
the gulf, whose inhabitants are dreaded as pirates and man-eaters. Here the most 
powerful "rajah" is the jDrince of Atti-Atti, an insular ■ group of some twenty 
houses lying west of Sekaar, and occupied by a motley population of nominal 
Mohammedans. The rajah of this place is the representative of the Sultan of 
Tidor in these waters, and the tribute of the villages along the coast is collected 
by him. Thanks to his intervention the Tidor suzerain and the Dutch Govern- 
ment itself have ceased to be myths for the natives of these districts ; in the 
Karas archipelago, in tjie Island of Adi, and as far as Namatotte and Aidiima, near 
the bay where formerly stood Fort Bus, the authority of the Netherlands is fully 
recogni.sed; but farther eastwards the power of the " Company " is no longer 
anything more than a name. The Papuans of these regions are said by travellers 
to approach the African Negro type more than any others ; formerly they carried 
on a trade in slaves, and according to the early exjilorers at times even sold their 
own children into bondage. 

The Aru, that is, " Mother-of-Pearl," Archipelago, lying about 90 miles south 
of the New Guinea coast, enjoys far greater commercial importance than the 
trading places on the mainland. Dohbo, the commercial centre of the group, 
commands a well-sheltered channel in the islet of "VVamma, one of the coralline 
rocks in the north-west of the archipelago. During the season from March to 
May whole fleets of praus assemble here from Ceram and the surrounding islands, 
from the Kei Archipelago and even from Macassar. According to Wallace the 
exports of Dobbo, chiefly mother-of-pearl, tortoise-shell, holothurite,- birds of 
paradise and edible birds'-nests, have a mean annual value of £18,000. During 
the busy period the houses are unable to afford accommodation to the numerous 
traders flocking hither from all parts of Western Indonesia ; but after the fair the 
place is completely deserted. 

The Aru Archipelago depends on the Ambnyna Residence, and usually once a 
year a Dutch commissioner comes round from the capital to make his general 
inspection and deliver judgment on pending cases. His intervention, however, is 
little needed, for during his absence the people administer their own affairs fairly 
well, having neither murders nor thefts to punish. According to von Rosenberg, 
some groups of Negritoes dwell near the fisheries in the eastern part of the 
archipelago. The Alivurus (Alfurus) of the Aru Islands claim descent from an 
ancestral tree, and are regM-ded by Riedel as of the same stock as the Australians 


of Xorth Queensland; others think they came from Timor and Tenimber, while 
"Wallace considers that they belong to the pure Papuan type. They eat the flesh 
of the dog, supposing that this diet will always keep them brave and strong ; 
but with their sago cakes they also take a few slices from the bodies of deceased 
relatives. The foreign religions, whether Christian or Mohammedan, have hitherto 
made scarcely any progress amongst these islanders. 

British New Guinea. 

Even before they became the official rulers of southern Papuasia, the English 
had already extended their jurisdiction over all the inhabited islands of Torres 
Strait to within sight of the great island. Hence the Australian colonists had 
only very narrow waters to cross in order to take possession of their new domain. 
The proximity of the Australian continent in fact gives quite an exceptional 
importance to this British territory. It is accordingly the best known, or rather 
the least unexplored region .in the whole of New Guinea ; here the itineraries of 
travellers reach farthest inland, and here attempts at colonisation have been 
essayed on the largest scale. Australian speculators are already demanding the 
concession of vast tracts to be converted into plantations and cultivated by native 
labour. Meantime the Government, fully alive to its responsibilities, has issued 
salutary measures tending to protect the aborigines from extermination or from 
the evils usualh' resulting even from peaceful contact with the white. The sale of 
fire-arms, or alcoholic drinks and of opium to the local tribes is absolutely forbidden, 
as is also the indiscriminate recruiting of the natives for the labour markets else- 

The portion of British territory conterminous with Dutch New Guinea seems 
to hold out the brightest prospects for future settlement and material progress. 
Here are the rich alluvial lands watered by the numerous navigable branches of 
the Fly River, and at the same time lying nearest to the Australian mainland. 
The intervening shallow and island-studded waters of Torres Strait are only about 
100 miles wide, reckoning from the mouth of the Baxter Eiver to Cape York at 
the northern extremity of the York Peninsula. Nevertheless the vast and fertile 
delta region is stiU. entirely held by Papuan wild tribes, and the nearest station 
of white traders and missionaries lies, not on the mainland but on the reef-fringed 
islet of Saibai, off the coast to the east of the mouth of the Mai Kasa. 

"When the syndicate of the Australian colonies sent an expedition in 1885 to 
establish British authority over the officially annexed territory, the site of the 
future capital was fixed at Fort-Moreshy, an inlet opening to the south-west of the 
superb Owen Stanley highlands, and sheltered by a chain of reefs from the fury 
of the surf during stormy weather. At this point white coralline cliffs take the 
place of the muddy mangrove-covered shores which skirt the mainland to the 
north-west. The basin of the roadstead, which is approached by a wide entrance, 
has a depth of from 24 to 40 feet almost close inshore. Here also is one of the 
largest and most salubrious native villages on the whole seaboard. Even at the 



time of the discovery in 1873, its double row of huts, shaded by cocoanut palin- 
groves, had as many as eight hundred indiistrious inhabitants occupied with 
agriculture, trade, and pottery, and doing a hirge traffic with the villages aloug 

Fi^. l;j.3. — POKT-MOEESEY. 

Scale 1 : iOO.OOt^, 



SO Feet and 

the north-west coast, which took the excellent Port-More.sby earthenware in 
exchange for sago. 

yiuce that time the native town has considerably increased in size, while the 


European quarter, which in 1885 had only a group of houses helonging to the 

Fig. 136. — KoYAKi DwEiiiNO, keae Poet-IIorksby, New Guinea. 

missionaries and the depots of a British trader, now boasts of its Governmont 


"palace," barracks, court-house, prison, and other structures symbolising European 
administration. Port-Moresby is the only haven in British New Guinea where 
foreign skippers are authorised to land their wares ; nor can any colonists settle 
in the place without special permission. It is already connected by a submarine 
cable with the Australian continent. 

In 1887 not more than about twenty whites, officials, traders, and missionaries, 
were resident on the mainland of the British territory. Most of the dealers carried 
on their operations with the natives from their ships without ever landing. The 
explorer and naturalist, 0. H. Forbes, had founded a small settlement at Sogere, in 
the interior, about 50 miles north-east of Port-Moresby, and it was from this point 
that he organised his expeditions to the surrounding highlands. Gold miners, 
hitherto attended with but little success, have also established a few camping 
grounds at some distance inland, and a white traveller may now wander alone 
without danger throughout most of the southern regions in British territory east 
of the Fly River. 

But it is chiefly through the action of native teachers trained by the mission- 
aries that European influence is slowly making itself felt amongst the highland 
populations. The Protestant seminary at Port-Moresby sends every year a certain 
number of young educated natives to the villages along the seaboard and in the 
islands, and thanks to them the languages current in this region are already well 
known. These teachers have been most successful especially as gardeners, and the 
enclosures of the villages are already in many places well stocked with vegetables 
and fruit trees till recently unknown in the country. 

Beyond Port-Moresby no European houses are anywhere to be seen except on 
the Hula headland some 60 miles south-east of the capital, and in a few islets near 
the coast. The Government, however, has acquired South Cape and Stacey Island, 
at the south-east extremity of New Guinea, in anticipation of a future strategical 
and commercial establishment in this region. Plantations have been recently 
begun in South east Island, the chief member of the Louisiade Archipelago. 
Here the Island of Vare, or Teste, has already become a station much frequented by 
skippers engaged in the coasting trade. 

On the whole the British is much more thickly peopled than the Butch section 
of New Guinea. In some districts, and especially on the shores of Papua Gulf 
between the Fly Delta and Yule Island, fhe population is very dense, large villages 
following in succession from creek to creek. The Aroma country, south-east of 
Port-Moresby, is also well peopled, while the Louisiade and Entrecasteaux Islands 
are fringed with hamlets round their poripherj'. The natives of these archi- 
pelagoes, however, are much dreaded, and seafarers shipwrecked on their shores 
have often been devoured by them. They have the reputation of being all 
powerful magicians, of whom it is related that they can tear out the eyes, the 
tongue, the heart and entrails of their enemies without the victims' knowledge. 

Some of the tribes are of Papuan origin, and closely resemble those of western 
New Guinea. These are for the most part agriculturists, while those engaged in 
trade and navigation appear to be half-castes, the Polynesian type predominating 



amongst many of them. To tliis mixed race belong the Motus of Port-Moresby, 
who manufacture and export vast quantities of earthenware, and whose language 
has become the lingua franca of the traders along a large part of the seaboard. 
Their complexion is relatively fair, not unlike that of the Tahitians, and in their 
attitude, physiognomy, and usages they also recall the eastern Polynesians. Of 
all the New Guinea peoples they practise tattooing to the greatest extent. The 
designs, with which they cover a great part of the body, bear a surprising resem- 
blance to Greek and Latin characters. At the sight of these fine torsos, which 
seem clothed with inscriptions, one feels involuntarily tempted to decij)her the 
writing, as if it contained the personal history of the bearers. 

The Koyari, who occupy the first slopes of the mountains back of Port-Moresby, 
have near their villages little dohos, or houses, perched on the tree tops, where they 
take refuge in case of danger, and whence the}' hurl stones on their assailants. It 
was perhaps these dobos that gave rise to the legend of certain Papuan peoples 
living in the trees, and springing from branch to branch like monkeys. The 
Kojari and the neighbouring Koitaj)u of kindred stock have a much darker com- 
plexion than the Motus. 

The aborigines of the British territory must be included amongst those popula- 
tions, who have developed no distinct form of government, all the male adults 
being practically equal. Doubtless each village has its so-called " chiefs," who 
owe this title either to age or to personal valour in warfare, or else to their superior 
skill and potency as magicians. But this moral ascendency gives them no authority 
over the tribe, and the consequence is that the British Government is unable to 
utilise them as officials in the way it would wish. All its efforts aim at giving 
the tribes a monarchical constitution, by appointing some distinguished member of 
the community to be henceforth a paid functionary, and at the same time the 
representative of his fellow-tribesmen, and responsible for their conduct. The 
general administration of British New Guinea has meantime been delegated by the 
home Government to the Australian colony of Queensland. 

The German Possessions ix New Guinea. 

The Gorman territory, officially designated by the name of Kaiser "Wilhelms- 
land, is not administered as a state colony by oificials from Berlin. Its manage- 
ment is simply left in the hands of a trading company, which, mider the protection 
and control of the Government, endeavours to make money by laying out planta- 
tions, establishing trading stations, and exporting local produce. Men-of-war visit 
these waters to give the German traders the necessary prestige, and, when 
required, to lend them active assistance. 

Numerous expeditions have revealed the form of the coast Hue in all its details, 
but the old French, English, and Russian names of the prominent headlands and 
other geographical featui-es have been gradually replaced by German appellations. 
Very little of the nomenclature given to this region by the first explorers now 
remains on the maps, and the natives no longer salute strangers by the title of 



" Monsieur," as they had learned to do from Dumout d'Uiville and other French 

The capital of the German possessions in New Guinea is Finhvli-lidfcn, so named 
in honour of the German explorer Finsch, who has surveyed most of the country 

Fig. 137.— Astrolabe B.\y. 
Scale 1 : 42D,uixi. 

and best described the hind and its inhabitants. Finseh-hafen lies near the 
extremity of the peninsida, which projects to the north of Huon Bay ; at this 
point the coast is deeply indented by a winding inlet, where large vessels can 
lide at anchor in 60 or 70 feet of water completely sheltered from all winds. 


The first liouscs of the settlement were erected towards the end of tlie year 1885 
on a round ishmd, which has been connected by an embankment with the main- 
land. Cisterns have also been constructed to husband the rain-water, there being 
a total absence of springs in the coralline limestones of the island and surrounding 

At the first arrival of the Germans the district was comparatively well-peopled, 
but most of the natives have since emigrated in order to avoid being obliged to 
work on the plantations of the whites. A Protestant mission has been established 
in the vicinity, and communication with the civilised world is maintained by a 
steamer plying between this station and the Australian settlement of Cooktown on 
the east coast of Queensland. 

In the Appendix will be found a table of the islands which may be regarded as 
geographical dependencies of New Guinea. The German islands off the north coast 
form part of the Melanesian Archipelagoes, while those of Torres Strait on the 
opposite side of the great island are attributed to Australia. 



LL the islands lying north-east of New Guinea as far as the equator 
have been declared German possessions by the treaty of partition 
with Great Britain. Towards the west the German waters are 
limited by the meridian of 141° east longitude, but eastwards the 
Pacific Ocean is left open for future annexations. Till 1885 the 
limit was indicated by 154° east longitude, but that limit was effaced the next year 
when the north-western members of the Solomon group, Bougainville, Choiseul, 
Yzabel, and all the neighbouring lands to the north of 8° south latitude, were pro- 
claimed German territory. The islands thus officially annexed to the empire have 
an estimated superficial area of over 30,000 square miles, with a population of pro- 
bably about three hundred and fifty thousand. Like the New Guinea possessions, 
these insular groups are assigned to a trading company, which at the same time 
exercises political functions. 

According to the terms of the treaty the southern section of the Solomon Archi- 
pelago falls within the sphere of British influence. 

I. — North Melanesia : Admiralty, Bismarck and Solomon Islands. 

These oceanic lands are amongst those that have longest remained unnoticed. 
In 1567 Mendana, guided bj' the pilot Hernando Gallego, landed on Yzabel, one 
of the large islands to which he gave the collective ' name of the Solomon 
Archipelago, doubtless with the hope or pretension of having here discovered that 
aurifei'ous " land of Ophir " whence the King of Judasa imported the gold for the 
Temple of Jerusalem. 

Mendana spent six months in exploring the islands, which he was at last obliged 
to leave through lack of provisions and water, after quarrelling with the natives 
whom he had come " to convert to the true faitb." Later he returned to colonise 
the archipelago which he had discovered, but died before reaching it. The route 
to the Solomon Islands was thus lost, and remained unknown for two himdred 
years afterwards. Its position had been too vaguely indicated to be followed with 
any certainty, while Gallego's report had been kept secret, lest he should direct 
the mariners of other nations to these islands henceforth claimed by Spain. The 
record of this route has only recently been discovered in the Spanish archives, and 
translated into English by H. B. Guppy. 


Two hundred years after Mendaiia's voj-age, Carteret, in 17G7, followed the 
next year hy Bougainville, and in 1769 by Surville, again sailed through the 
straits and channels discovered by the Spanish navigator, but without identify- 
ing them ; in fact, they fancied they had discovered new lands and accordingly 
gave them new names. It was reserved for Buache and Fleurieu, by patient 
investigation and comparative studies of the early itineraries, to restore to the 
Spanish mariners the glory of having first explored these Melanesian regions. 

But while navigators were in vain seeking the lost route to the Solomon group, 
they visited other lands lying nearer to New Guinea. In 1616 the Dutch sailors, 
Le Maire and Schouten, surveyed the " Twenty-five Islands," since Carteret's time 
known as the Admiralty Archipelago ■ they also discovered Birara or New 
Britain, which, however, they mistook for the northern seaboard of New Guinea 
fiinged with numerous islets. Tasman, who also visited these lands in 1643, fell into 
the same error, which was not corrected till the year 1700, when Dampier, passing 
southwards, penetrated into the strait that bears his name, and thus determined 
the insular character of the Admiralty group ; but much still remained to be 
done, and the systematic survey of these waters, begun in the last century by 
Carteret, Bougainville, and d'Entrecasteaux, and continued in 1827 by Dumont 
d'Urville, is only now being gradually completed. 

For the inland exploration of the islands little has hitherto been done. 
Missionaries, traders, adventurers, naturalists, such as Mildukho-Maklay, Finsch, 
Guppy, have visited various parts of the Melanesian groups and published the 
results of their studies ; but no methodical survey of the whole region was begun 
till the year 1884, when New Britain and New Ireland were occupied by the 
German Government. Unfortunately', one of the first official acts of that jiower 
was to change the geographical nomenclature, in which names of English and 
French origin prevailed. Doubtless, some of these arbitrary terms might with 
advantage have been suppressed, and replaced by those current amongst the 
natives themselves. But the maps have been modified in the spirit of a mistaken, 
or aggressive patriotism, without considering whether the new terminology could 
be justified by the physical aspect of the islands, the nature of the soil, 
population, or comparative geography. 

The chief insular group has thus become the Bismarck Ai'chijielago; Tombara, 
or New Ireland, is henceforth to be known as New Mecldenburg ; York Island 
has taken the name of New Lauenburg, and Birara, or New Britain, that of New 
Pomerania. Most of the mountains and ports have been similarly "re-baptised," 
with a cynical defiance of international etiquette and indifference to the fitness of 

Physical Features of North Melanesia. 

The North Melanesian lands are disposed in the form of two transverse curves. 
The northern, beginning with Tiger Island, about 100 miles north of the New Guinea 
seaboard, stretches eastwards through the groups of Ninigo or Exchequer, the 


Hermit and Admiralty to New Hanover, which is followed by the elongated 
island of Torabara, disposed in the direction from north-west to south-east, in 
common with all the members of the Solomon Archipelago. The southern curve 
runs at first parallel with the New Guinea coast, where the extreme limit of the 
chain is marked by Vulcan Island within ten miles of the mainland. The sj-stem 
is then continued at intervals b}' Dampier (Kar-Kar), Long and Rook, beyond 
which the curve, ceasing to follow the New Guinea coast south-eastwards, sweeps 
round through Birara (New Britain) east and north-east transversly to Tombara. 
Both curves thus converge and somewhat overlap about York Island in St. George's 

Like moat other insular chains disposed in the form of arcs of a circle, these two 
ranges of the North Melanesian islands consist in a great measure of volcanic lands. 
Vulcan, at the western extremity of the southern curve, forms a superb peak 
from which wreaths of smoke constantly issue. Its shores are festooned with a 
gai'land of plantations and its slopes clothed with forest growths to a height of 
over 3,000 feet, beyond which nothing is seen except a scanty hei-baccous vegeta- 
tion as far as the summit, 5,000 feet above the sea. 

Aris, near this smoking cone, is a long extinct breached crater ; but Lesson, 
lyino- farther west, is still active. These waters have often been the scene of 
violent commotions, and when Dampier penetrated through the strait bearing his 
name, the atmosphere was charged with vapours and ashes ; flames were reflected 
from the clouds, and the sea was covered far and wide by floating pumice ; but at 
present all the numerous igneous cones dotted over this maritime region are 

Birara, largest member of all the IMelanesian groups, is too little known in its 
central parts to determine the character of the rocks concealed beneath the 
uniform mantle of verdure clothing all the mountain slopes. But Cape Gloucester, 
at the extreme point overlooking Dampier Strait, is known to be a still active 
volcano, while round about rise numerous eruptive cones with an average height 
of about 6,500 feet. A low reef in the cluster of the French Islands scattered to 
the north of Birara is also an upheaved igneous mass, one of whose springs forms 
a geyser. Farther east a promontory on the mainland, 3,940 feet high, consti- 
tutes, with two less elevated crests, the group of still-burning mountains known as 
the "Father" and his two "Sons." Lastly, Blanche or "Wliite Bay, at the 
northern extremity of Birara, appears to be itself a ruined crater encircled by an 
amphitheatre of hills. In the midst of the waters, which present an almost 
lacustrine aspect, stands a steep circular eminence, while the peninsula enclosing 
the bay on the east is surmounted by another triplet of volcanoes, known as 
the "Mother" (2,100 feet) and her two "Daughters." In the neighbouring 
seas the water has often been seen to boil up, and some of the islets have even been 
l>artly blown away. 

Igneous energy seems to be less active in the western section of the northern 
curve forming the chief insular chain of North Melanesia. The Exchequer and 
Hermit groups are vast atolls resting on a rocky bed whose true character has not 



yet been determined. The Admiraltj- Archipelago consists mainly of coralline 
rocks, and here a mass, 2,970 feet high, occupying the centre of the large island 
of Taui, is alone said to be of plutonic origin. 

Among the less elevated hills in New Hanover, Tombara (New Ireland), and 

Fig. 138.- White Bat. 
Scale 1 : 170,000. 

Sands and Reefs 
exposed at low water. 

neighbouring islets no igneous cones have j^et been discovered, but the volcanic 
.system again reappears in the Solomon Archipelago. Here, the large island of 
Bougainville consists from one extremity to the other of a continuous igneous 
range describing a regular curve whose concave side faces north-eastwards ; Balbi, 
its culminating peak, has an altitude of 10,170 feet ; but Bagana, situated in the 



central part of the island, is the only cone which still ejects vapours and ashes. 
The upraised cones scattered over Bougainville Strait are also composed of lavas, 
but appear to have long been extinct. 

Choiseul, which forms the south-eastern continuation of Bougainville, and 
which rests on the same submarine bank, presents a greater expanse of lowlands, 
former marine and coralline beds. 

Yzabel and Malaita (Malanta), in the northern division of the Solomon group, 
also consist of igneous ranges whose culminating crests rise resiDCctively to 
altitudes of 3,900 and 4,270 feet. But the eruptive masses in both islands are of 
very ancient date, and have been modified to great depths by weathering. Up to 
a height of 500 feet the hills are encircled by calcareous terraces slowy deposited 
by the surrounding marine waters. 

The southern chain of the Solomons, running parallel with the northern, 
begins with Treasury (Mono) Island, lying some 60 miles south of Bougainville. 
Guppy describes this island as an anciently submerged volcanic peak covered by 
several hundred feet of deposits, then encrusted with coral reefs, and finally 
elevated above the sea to a height of nearly 1,200 feet. At one time it appears 
to have subsided to a depth of about 1,800 fathoms, so that, adding its present 
height, there must have been a subsequent upheaval of no less than 12,000 feet.* 

The groiip of islands stretching from Treasury in a south-easterly direction 
contains some not yet entirely extinct cones. Vela la Velha (Vella Lavella), 
3,000 feet high, has some fumeroles and a solfatara. Narovo, or Eddystone, is also 
furrowed by crevices whence escape sulphurous vapours. But on New Georgia, 
largest member of this cluster, nothing occurs except a range of quiescent or 
extinct crests. When the Spaniards first reached these waters, the islet of Savo, 
(Sesarga) at the north end of Guadalcanar, was in full eruption. Guadalcanar, 
largest of the southern Solomons, is covered with .supei'b cloud-capped moimtains 
rising to heights of from 6,000 to 8,000 feet. 

San Cristobal (4,100 feet) is also of volcanic origin; but all traces .of activity 
have disappeared, and the coast is now fringed bj' coralline headlands. Santa- 
Ana, at the southernmost point of the Archipelago, is, like Treasury, an ancient 
volcano, which, after subsiding some 1,500 or 2,000 fathoms below the surface, 
was again upheaved with a calcareous depo.sit encrusting its primitive eruptive 

Atolls and low islets are scattered over the Pacific to the east of the Solomons, 
forming an irregular chain of extensive surf-beaten reefs. Here the atoll of 
Ongtong-Java or Candelaria, called also Lord Howe or Leueneuwa, is especially 
dreaded by mariners, its oval circuit of reefs having a periphery of at least 120 
miles. The Solomons are also fringed in many places by barrier reefs, which 
rise above the surface in deep waters. East of Yzabel one of these coralline 
ramparts is repiorted to be considerably over 100 miles long ; New Georgia, 
Bougainville and Choiseul are similarly fringed with reefs, which render more 
than half of their seaboards inaccessible to shipping. The straits flowing between 

* T/ie Solomon Islands, i^. 102. 


these barriers and the islands have an average depth of from 350 to 400 fathoms. 
But the greatest cavity yet revealed in the Melanesian waters occurs towards the 
centre of the semi- circle formed by the Bismarck Archipelago between New 
Britain and New Ireland, where the sounding line plunged into an abyss of 780 

Climate, Flora axd Fauna of North Melanesia. 

The North ]Melanesian lands arc comprised entirely within the zone of the 
south-east trade winds. For more than half the year, from May to September, or 
even from April to November or December, the wind sets steadily in the normal 
direction ; then it yields to the west or north-west monsoon, a variable and 
shifting current, but still humid, like the trade wind, for it also traverses a wide 
expanse of water before reaching the islands. Hence there is at least one rainy 
day in three, at times one in two, throughout the year, and both the Bismarck and 
Solomon Archij^elagoes have a mean annual rainfall of not less than 150 inches in 
the immediate vicinity of the seaboard,* and far more on the higher slopes where 
the moisture-bearing clouds are first intercepted. According to GujDpy, the 
discharge aA'erages from 440 to 480 inches at heights of 6,000 to 7,000 feet in 
the upland valleys of Guadalcanar facing towards the south-east trades. These 
mountain slopes ajipear to be the most copiously watered of any oceanic lands, and 
are elsewhere surpassed in this respect only by the escarjjments of the Khasi Hills 
in the Brahmaputra basin. During a single downpour of ten hours Guppy 
recorded over 1 1 inches of rain in the neighbourliood of the coast. The least 
healthy season is that of the variable winds accompanying tlie west monsoon. 

Thanks to the abundant rainfall, the North Melanesian flora, which greatly 
resembles that of New Guinea, is both rich and varied. Even the low coral banks 
disappear in many places under the large trees, the seeds of which have been brought 
by the winds, the marine currents, and the birds. On the hillsides the forests 
extend in a continuous, impenetrable mass, their leafy canopies rising here and 
there over 150 feet above the ground. One of the most widespread of these foreign 
growths is the banyan fig, with its thousand pendent tendrils twining round and 
at last choking other species. This incessant struggle between the banyan and the 
other giants of the woodlands forms a familiar theme of many local legends. 

One of the most remarkable products of the cryptogamic flora in the Solomon 
group is a mass of vegetable matter which resembles the yam, but which is found 
resting upon the ground without roots or any connecting stems. Guppy dwells 
with admiration on the surprising knowledge displayed b}' the natives in 
botanical matters. They clearly distinguish between species almost identical in 
appearance, and in this respect show themselves far better naturalists than any 
educated Europeans except specialists. 

The North Melanesian fauna also greatly resembles that of New Guinea, but 

* Rainfall at Santa-Ana off south-east coast of San Cristobal in 1883, 125 inches ; at Ugi, east of 
San Cristobal, 14C-24 inches. — (Guppy). 



Polynesian are intermingled with Papuasian forms in the Solomon Islands, which lie 
on the borders of the two zoological domains. According to native report anthro- 
poid apes still survive in the large islands of Malaita, Guadalcanar and San 
Cristobal ; but they have never been seen by any European zoologists, who have 
mot no indigenous mammals except the pig, the dog, and a small species of rat4 
Of birds the pigeon is the most common and the chief agent in the dispersion of 
plants. Powell asserts that in the volcanic islands the megapodius (brush turkey) 
often lays its eggs in the fissures of the rocks emitting hot vapours. 

The reptiles, so poorly represented in most oceanic islands, are somewhat 
numerous in the Solomons, and several species are even peculiar to the Mela- 
nesian Archipelagoes. Specially noteworthy are the enormous toads, which were 
formerly worshipped with snakes in the island of Yzabel. Crocodiles, still 
venerated by the islanders, abound on the coastlands, and live both in salt and 
fresh water. They are little dreaded, and according to the local legend are 
dangerous only to unfaithful wives. The Solomon Archipelago marks the 
easternmost limit in the range of these saurians, which are not met again till 
the American continent is reached. 

Inhabitaxts of North Melanesia. 

The Melanesians belong undoubtedly to the same stock as the New Guinea 
Papuans, although representatives also occur amongst them both of the Malay 
and Polynesian types. A Micronesian enclave is also found in the little 
Exchequer group, consisting of some fifty isles and islets. San Cristobal, in the 
Solomon Archijielago, is probably the land pointed to as the cradle of their race 
in the legends of the South-Sea Islanders. This land of Pure, which was indi- 
cated to the pilot Queiros as the original home of the Oceanic tribes, and which 
Hale sought to identify with the island of Buru in the Moluccas, would seem 
much more probably to have been Baura, that is, the island whose name the 
Spaniards afterwards changed to San Cristobal. 

But however this be, the prevailing features amongst the inhabitants of the 
seaboard in the Admiralty, Bismarck, and Solomon groups are those of the 
Melanesian or Papuan type. The tribes of the interior, often spoken of as bush- 
men, are very little known ; but certain indications would seem to imply that the 
Negrito element is largely represented amongst them. The legend of tailed men 
said to live in the interior of New Britain is widespread. A great variety of 
idioms prevails throughout the archipelagoes, although, so far as is known, all 
would appear to be derived from a common source. 

The North Melanesians are for the most part of mean height and well-propor- 
tioned, with a deep brown or blackish complexion and abundant frizzly or crisp 
hair. The finest group are those of Bougainville, who surpass all the others in 
stature and strength, but who are also of a darker colour and distinguished by their 
brachycephalic or round heads. The same form of the skull, however, prevails 
amongst many other Melanesians, a fact first placed beyond doubt by Miklukho 






Maklaj' to the surprise of most ethnologists, who regarded the dolichocephalic 
or long shape of the head as specially characteristic of this Oceanic group. 

A large number of Melanesians, especially in the Admiralty Islands, have 
long teeth projecting beyond the mouth, a featiire which imparts to the phy- 
siognomy a somewhat ferocious and even bestial expression. But this feature is 
less conspicuous amongst the men, whose teeth are covered with a dark varnish 
from the habit of betel-chewing, than amongst the women and children, whose 
teeth are white. Some natives, especially of New Britain, are also met, the toes 
of whose feet are all connected together by a common membrane.* Ulcers under 
the soles are veiy general, and in the Solomon Archipelago at least two-fifths of 

Fig. 139. — SiN Ceistobax. 
Scale 1 : 1,700,000. 

East ofiGreenv 


250 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

the inhabitants are afflicted with large .sores caused by a parasite [tinea circinafa 
tropica) ; in some islands nearly the whole population has to entertain these 
troublesome guest.s. 

Skin diseases, also, are not less prevalent than amongst the Caroline islanders, 
while the baneful habit of eating argillaceous clay is common in the Admiraltj' 
group. Most of the old people are carried off by pulmonary affections, and when 
the mortality becomes excessive in a village, the inhabitants migrate to some other 
place declared by the magicians to be more propitious. As a rule the JMelanesians 
are less affected than the Polynesians hy the morbid influences caused by contact 
with the whites ; but on the other hand certain islands arc being graduallj- 
depopulated by the universal practice of infanticide. In Ugi, oft' the east coast of 

• Romilly, The JVcstcni Pacific and New Guinea. 


San Cristobal, nearly all the children of both sexes are killed by their parents, 
and the population is recruited by the purchase of young slaves on the neighbour- 
ing island ; on reaching the adult age these slaves become free. 

The Melanesians do not practise circumcision, and the jirevalence of this rite 
in any community is a sure proof of Polynesian descent. Tattooing is the rule, 
performed, however, by incisions with sharp stones, not by pricking, as amongst the 
South-Sea Islanders. In Santa- Ana, at the southern extremity of the Solomon 
group, the youths do not acquire the privileges of manhood until they have sub- 
mitted to this rite, and during the operation they are obliged to dwell apart and 
live on the blood of a sacred fish. In Bougainville, on the contrary, tattooing is 
interdicted to the young ; but after marriage both sexes embellish the person with 
rows of knobs in the form of peas, the number and disposition of which indicate 
the rank of the individual. 

Like most savages the Melanesians pay great attention to their toilet ; they 
daily spend hours in the water, rubbing the body and painting it red, excej)t in 
time of mourning, when bathing is forbidden. The hair is dressed in various ways, 
either as an enormous globe, or tower-shaped, or else fashioned by means of claj' 
and ochre into a compact red mass. Such is the labour required to keep the 
hair properly dressed that in Treasury Island some of the old women shave it 
off altogether in order to find time for their household duties. 

Instead of clothes some of the more savage tribes load themselves with orna 
ments of all kinds, necklaces, bracelets, fantastic trinkets, tufts of foliage and 
the like. The cartilage of the nose is generally pierced for the insertion of small 
boars' tusks, or else strings of shells, while bits of stick, bone, and other objects 
are introduced into the pierced lobe of the ear. Warriors distinguished for their 
prowess in the battlefield wear festoons of human teeth, vertebra) or finger joints, 
a thigh bone suspended on the breast completing their military decorations. In 
Matupi and many other islands the currency still consists of strings of shells, 
replaced elsewhere by dogs' teeth, and in the cannibal districts by necklets of 
human teeth ; empty bottles serve the like purpose in the Admiralty group. 

Incessant warfare prevails in certain islands not only between the seaboard and 
inland tribes, but also between the coastlanders themselves. This is due to the 
necessity of procuring heads to decorate the chief's house and the war canoes ; 
captives are also needed, to be slaughtered on certain solemn feasts, so that their 
souls may protect the plantations or bring success to the fishermen. Fiu'ther 
victims are required to grace the funeral obsequies of the chiefs. The body is 
placed erect in the grave, then buried up to the neck, after which a fire is kindled 
to consume the flesh, the skull being then carried off and set up in the canoe, 
serving the purpose of a temple. But the grave has still to be filled in with the 
youngest wife, a child, and the most valued treasures of the departed, together 
with the offerings of his friends. Then the miscellaneous contents are crushed, 
broken to pieces and covered with stones, while the assembled multitude utter 
cries of grief ; occasionally the very palm groves are felled, so that the owner's 
trees may share in the universal mourning, or else accompanj' him to the other world. 


As a rule the slaves owned by the chiefs are well treated ; but the terrible 
prospect constantly stares them in the face of being at any moment clubbed and 
eaten in honour of some tribal victory, the launching of a canoe or other festive 
occasion. According to Romilly one of the most appreciated dishes of the New 
Ireland cuisine is a mixture of sago, cocoanut and human brains. Cannibalism is 
probably nowhere more rampant than in Arossi (San Cristobal), where as many as 
twenty people are at times cooked and consumed in a single day. A chief visited 
by Brown had a cocoanut palm on which seventy- six notches indicated the number 
of human beings devoured up to that time (1883). 

Anthropophagy regarded as a religious rite is still almost universally practised 
in the Melanesian Archipelagoes ; in Santa-Ana, however, it has fallen into abey- 
ance ever since it was tabooed by the chief after an epidemic. In some other 
islands, also, the influence of the whites has caused it to disappear, and the natives 
who still indulge are at least so far ashamed of doing so that they deny it in the 
presence of strangers. Human remains are also being gradually replaced in many 
places by the bones of swine in the decoration of houses and war canoes. 

The Melanesian villages, mostly composed of two rows of huts built stoutly 
enough to stand the climate for five or six jears, jjresent every type of con- 
struction prevalent in the oceanic world. Isolated groups raised on jjiles are 
characteristic of one district, dwellings standing on the ground of another, while 
elsewhere, notably in Yzabel, the people live in fortified trees accessible only by 
ladders or notched beams. Everj' village has its tamhu, a sort of " town-hall," 
built with the greatest care, embellished with curious wood-carvings, and set apart 
for public assemblies, for the reception and entertainment of strangers, and for 
housing the chief's war canoes. In New Britain this mansion is at times decorated 
with statues sculptured in a chalky stone, which is .said to be cast ashore by the 
tidal and earthquake waves. 

Of all the large Melanesian islands New Ireland appears to be the most 
densely peopled, especially on the west side. Coasting along the seaboard, sea- 
farers everywhere observe the smoke rising from human habitations, and in some 
places the shore is thickly fringed by cocoanut palms, which supply the staj^le of 
food. The population may be roughly estimated by the number of these trees, twenty 
of which represent on an average one person. The cabin of every native is con- 
sidered as a sacred place by his neighbours, who dare not enter it except at the 
risk of their lives. 

Like some of the Micronesian islanders, the Melanesians construct admirable and 
highly decorated boats, most of which carry a square instead of a pointed sail as 
in Polynesia. Thej' are daring and skilful navigators, as well as intelligent 
husbandmen. In the forest clearings, generally at some distance from the villages, 
the fields planted with yams, sweet potatoes, taro, bananas, and sugar-cane are 
well tilled by the women. The produce of these plantations is supplemented by 
other alimentary plants, such as the sago, cocoanut palm, and bread-fruit tree. 
The women also weave the matting with, pandanus leaves, and make the earthen- 
ware, while the men manufacture the agricultural implements, clubs, spears, bows 


and arrows, and other weapons, whicli vary considerably in the different islands 
English is everj'where the language of commercial intercourse. 

Notwithstanding the murder of many whites, afterwards served uj) at the 
public banquets, Loth Catholic and Protestant missionaries have penetrated into 
many parts of the Melunesian Archipelagoes. A mission founded in San Cristobal 
having brought about a general massacre had to be removed to Woodlark Island ; 
but the priests were driven from this place also, and have now taken refuge in 
Rook Island, near Dampier Strait, at- the south-west extremity of New Ireland. 

The influence of the missionaries, more or less neutralised by that of unprin- 
cipled traders and mariners, has hitherto been little felt. The Melanesians still 
continue to worship their good and evil spirits, as well as the grand phenomena of 
nature. They also venerate those animals that thej' fear, in one jilace the shark, 
in another the crocodile. Little care is taken of the sick, who, in most of the islands, 
are even abandoned to their fate when all hope of recovery is lost — they are taken 
to the dead-house, a cocoanut is placed on their mat, and they are left to die 

The political systems differ greatlj^ in the various insular groups. In the 
Admiralty and Bismarck Archipelagoes the tribes have no chiefs, or rather those 
bearing this title owe it to the foreign traders. Here no one pi'esumes to dictate 
to his neighbour; all the members of the community are equal, and deliberate 
without the control of superiors on the common interests. On the other hand the 
power of the hereditary chiefs has been firmly established in most of the Solomon 
Islands. Although, as a rule, there are as many states as villages, some of the 
more powerful chiefs rule over whole clusters of islets and even over extensive 
tracts on the larger islands. Thus the " King " of Shortland in Bougainville 
Strait holds sway over all the islanders in that channel, as well as over the neigh- 
boviring tribes in Bougainville and Choiseul. The more powerful dynasties are 
generally constituted by the rulers of the smaller islands, whoso inhabitants are 
more restless and daring than the settled agricultural populations of the large 
islands. The policy of the German Government is at present directed towards 
consolidating the power of the more influential chiefs, and gradually transforming 
them to paid officials. 

There are no towns in German Melanesia. The " colony " of Port-Breton, 
founded in 1879 on the south coast of Tombara, in the most arid part of the island, 
has been completely abandoned by its French immigrants, to whom such golden 
promises had been held out, but who fonnd nothing but famine and sickness in 
" New France." Nothing remains of the settlement except a few sheds sheltering 
some merchandise from the weather. 

The political and commercial capital of the German Melanesian possessions 
occupies a perfectly central position between New Guinea and the Bismarck 
Archipelago. The first station was Mioko, in the still waters stretching south of 
York Island (New Lauenburg) ; but this port was abandoned in consequence of the 
fetid odours emitted by the neighbouring shoals which are exposed at low water. 
Choice wiis then made of the thickly peopled island of Jlrifiipi, which lies farther 




west, and which is nothiug but an upraised crater in the older crater of Blanche 
Harbour. But the village having been half destroyed by a volcanic eruption, the 
centre of the administration was again shifted, this time to the islet of Keraivara, 
which is situated south-west of Mioko, and which has the advantage of a roadstead 
accessible to the largest vessels. Not more than a thousand tons of copra are 
annually exported from this place. 

Fig. UO.— Neu-Lauenburg (Yoke) Island. 

Scale 1 : I7ii.ri.iii. 


25 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

3\ MUes. 

The officials of the trading company which represents the German power in 
these waters have hitherto been mainly occupied in superintending the emigration, 
or rather the transportation, of the natives carried off to work on the plantations of 
the whites. The slave markets have certainly been replaced by markets of "free 
labour ; " but the difference between the operations of all these labour vessels is 


little more than nominal, and thousands of natives " engaged " to work in remote 
places have perished of despair and hardships. Some German writers have 
advocated the establishment of a convict settlement in Melanesia. The islands in 
Dampier Strait, occupying a central position between the New Guinea coast and 
the northern archipelagoes, have been mentioned as the most convenient locality 
for this purpose. 

A table of the chief North Melanesian islands, with their extent and estimated 
population, is given in the Appendix. 

II. — South Melaxesi.\ : Santa-Cruz and New Hebrides. 

These two insular chains, although evidently belonging to the same geological 
system as the Solomons, are not disposed quite in the same direction, their longi- 
tudinal axis running north-north-west and south-south-east. The two clusters 
comprise some fifty isles and islets, besides countless reefs, and a few groups scat- 
tered over the eastern waters on the highways leading to Fiji and Samoa. Alto- 
gether Santa-Cruz and the New Hebrides, with the more remote Tikopia and 
Anuda, have a collective area estimated at from 5,000 to 5,500 square miles, with 
a total pojmlation approximately computed at about seventy thousand souls. 

The Santa-Cruz Archipelago was discovered in 1595 by Alonzo de Mendana, 
during the unsuccessful expedition undertaken to rediscover the Solomon group 
visited by him twenty-eight years previously. His companion, Queiros, when 
exploring the same waters in 1606, was the iirst to sight the New Hebrides. 
Casting anchor in a bay on the coast of Espiritu-Santo, he supposed he had 
reached the Australian continent, and accordingly gave to this " mother of so 
many islands " the name of Australia. It was in this island of Merena, or 
Espiritu-Santo, that he founded the "New Jerusalem," the city whence the true 
faith was to be spread over all the scattered lands of the Pacific Ocean. But 
Queiros never returned to this region, which remained unvisited for a himdred 
and fifty years till the time of Bougainville. But the very name of the " Great 
Cyclades," given to the New Hebrides by this navigator, shows that he made no 
systematic survey of this archipelago, which is disposed not in circles but in 

In 1774, six years after Bougainville, Cook visited the same group, which he 
studied more in detail, and to which he gave the name of the Scotch Islands, which 
has since been maintained in geographical nomenclature. After Cook's visit the 
coasts of the central islands still remained to be surveyed, and some more remote 
groups to be discovered. In 1789, Bligh, driven from his shij) by the mutineers 
of the Bounty, and compelled to make his way across more than half of the 
Pacific, had the good fortune to come upon the Banks Islands, lying to the 
north of the New Hebrides. The previous year Laperouse had navigated the 
same parts of the ocean ; but he never returned to announce his discoveries. 
His vessel was wrecked on a shoal off Vanikoro, the southernmost member 
of the Santa-Cruz group, though the scene of the disaster remained unknown until 




discovered thu-ty-uiae 3ears afterwards by Dillon. The fatal rock lies to the 
west of the island in one of the channels piercing the circuit of fringing reefs. 

Although now well known to mariners in the South Seas, and frequently 
visited by labour vessels and missionaries, neither the Santa- Cruz group nor the 
New Hebrides" have yet been annexed by any Eui-opeau power. The former 
come, no doubt, within the sphere assigned to British influence by the treaty 
concluded with Germany ; but the New Hebrides, which also seemed destined to 
become an English possession, have been disputed by France, and some of the 
islands have even been temporarily occupied by small French garrisons. Protes- 

Fig. Ul. — Vaxikoeo. 

Scale 1 : 375,000. 

S&'bo East oF Gne 

60 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

tant and Catholic missionaries, inspired by religious rivalries. New Caledonian and 
Fijian speculators in search of labourers for their plantations, clamoured for the 
intervention of their respective governments in favour of their particular interests, 
and for some years the political fate of the archipelago remained in suspense. 
This uncertain situation has even been indefinitely prolonged by a recent treaty 
which place's the group under joint British and French protection, a state of things 
which may probably, sooner or later, result in the partition of the archipelago 
between the two rival powers. 

Like the other insular chains in the "V\'estern Pacific, both archipelagoes arc of 



U2.— New Hebrides. 
Scale 1 : n sno.OOO. 

volcanic origin, as is evident from the regular cones strewn with ashes and lavas, 
which occur in nearly all these Melanesian lands. According to Dana, the almost 
total absence of coralline reefs must be attributed to the activity of the igneous 

forces; although lying between 
Ne\v Caledonia and Fiji, so rich in 
corals, neither Santa-Cruz nor the 
New Hebrides have a single atoll, 
and the only complete fringing 
reef is that which encircles the 
island of Vanikoro. Tinakoro, a 
northern member of the Santa- 
Cruz group, is in a constant state 
of eruption, while a volcano 1,870 
feet high, in the islet of Urepara- 
para, Banks Archipelago, shows a 
breached crater facing north-east- 
wards and now flooded by the sea. 
Copious thermal springs well up on 
the shores of Vanua-Lava, in the 
same neighbourhood ; both the 
island of Ambrym (3,590 feet), in 
the centre of the New Hebrides, 
and the precipitous Mount Lopevi 
(5,000 feet), culminating point of 
that group, are active volcanoes, 
as is also the wooded Mount Yasova, 
in Tanna (Tanna Aij)eri), near the 
southern extremity of the chain. 
Vapours, ashes, and lumps of lava 
are ejected from this crater at in- 
tervals of six or eight minutes, 
especially in the months of Jan- 
uary, February, and March. Port 
Resolution, an excellent harbour 
in Tanna, was tilled up by an earth- 
.quake in 1878. 

Submarine disturbances are of 
frequent occurrence in these waters, 
where vessels have occasionally to 
force their way through dense masses of floating pimiice. Besides the still restless 
craters a number of other insular cones were formerly the scene of igneous convul- 
sions. Many places show indications of comparatively recent upheaval, and Ormieres 
speaks of mangrove roots encrusted with shells lying some iO feet above the 
present sea-level. 

Easb'cf L-r,;,5n,-.,ch 170° 


•2,000 Fathoms 
and upwards. 
180 Miles. 


Climate — Flora — Favxa, 

The climate varies considerably in the different insular groups, which are 
scattered over a space of more than 12° of latitude (10" to 22° south latitude). 
Hence the mean temperature varies from 3° to 4° or 5° Fahr. between the two 
extremities of the archipelagoes. Nevertheless the movement of winds and rains is 
everywhere the same in these waters. The southern trade wind blows regularly 
during the summer of the northern hemisphere, from Jlay to October, while 
variable breezes alternate with the trades throughout the rest of the j-ear. Heavy 
rains, storms, and even cyclones visit the archipelagoes during the prevalence of 
the western gales. 

Owing to the abundant moisture the vegetation is dense and the mountains 
mostly forest-clad. For Europeans, the climate of the New Hebrides, and 
especially of the west or more humid side, is extremely insalubrious ; the same 
region appears to have also become less healthy for the natives themselves, who 
are now decimated by consumption. 

Thanks to the great fertility of the soil, the flora of these archipelagoes 
comprises a large number of forms not occurring elsewhere. Such are a species of 
myrtle, which gives a pungent odour and grows to a height of over 40 feet, and a 
variety of cedar, with olive-like foliage, which grows much higher and which 
might supply masts for large vessels. Nearly all the New Hebrides trees are 
highly resinous, and the white, transparent substance oozing from them is much 
valued by the few European manufacturers acquainted with its properties. In the 
New Hebrides sandalwood is mainly in demand for the export trade. 

In these archipelagoes the alimentary plants are chiefly of western origin. 
Although the Indian vegetable world is here still represented by a number of 
forms, the New Hebrides also belong to the New Zealand domain, as shown by 
the dammara, the araucaria and about a hundred varieties of ferns. With few 
exceptions, the fruit trees, such as the cocoanut, sago, bread-fruit tree and banana, 
are the same as those found in the other oceanic lands. But of all plants the 
most important is the yam, which constitutes the staple of food for the natives. 
The years are reckoned by the yam harvests, and for the hands carried off to work 
on the Queensland, Fiji, or New Caledonian plantations, the period of contract 
service, is estimated not by years but by j'ams. 

The indigenous fauna is extremely poor in mammals, the only primitive 
species being rats and bats. The pig has been imported, and even quite recentlj' 
the natives of Tanna and Mallicolo beheld with surprise the first dogs introduced 
from the Society Islands. The nutmeg pigeon is found also in Tanna. 


Santa-Cruz and the New Hebrides occupy a transitional zone between the 
Melanesian and Polynesian worlds, and their populations consequently present a 
great variety of types according to the extent of intermixture or the juxtaposition 
of the two races. Every island off'ers some contrast with its neighbours, and even 



on the same land the tribal groups often differ greatly in appearance, customs 

Fig. 143.— Group of New Hebkides Natites. 

and language. As in the Solomon and Bismarck Archipelagoes, the coast and 


inland populations form well-nuirkcd divisions, generally designated, in the 
" Pigeon English " of these- waters, bj^ the names of Man-saltwater and Man-bush. 
But according to Otto Finsch, the Melanesian is on the whole the dominant type 
even in the southern islands of Yate, Erromango and Tanna. 

Navigators have noticed that the natives of these southern islands are as a 
rule stronger, taller and better built than those of the northern section. But 
judged by our normal standard of beauty they cannot be considered handsome. 
The forehead is low and retreating, the face broad, with two prominent cheek- 
bones, the nose flat and the lips thick. In several islands the head of the children 
is deformed by means of boards, which have the eifect of lengthening the skull 
from back to front, while at the same time contracting and lowering it. To this 
artificial deformation is perhaps due the fact that, according to Professor Flower, 
the Vanikoro and Mallicolo islanders are the most dolichocephalous or long-headed 
of any known race. 

Hair and beard ai'e woolly, or frizzly, and the complexion almost black in the 
New Hebrides, where the people embellish themselves by piercing the lobes of the 
ears and the cartilage of the nose, by . gashing arms and breast, decking the head 
with shells, foliage, or tufts of grass, and embellishing the body with paintings in 
red ochre, lime, and diverse pigments. But tattooing in the strict sense of the 
term is somewhat rare, and in the southern islands absolutiily unknown. Many 
use wood ashes to impart a fine golden tint to the hair, which in Tanna the height 
of the fashion requires to be arranged in a multitude of small tresses tied at the 
roots with vegetable fibre. To complete this part of the toilet of a gay warrior is 
said to take no less than three or four j'ears. 

At the time of the discovery the natives went naked, or wore nothing beyond 
a strip of pounded bark, leaves, or cocoanut fibre. Some of the islanders described 
by Cook fastened the waist so tightlj' with a girdle of cordage as to look like 
large ants. At present most of the New Hebrides people have adopted European 
materials for all or part of their apparel. Their dwellings are not raised on piles 
like those of the Papuans and western Melanesians, but consist, for the most part, 
of simple roofs of palm-leaves suspended on four stakes. 

While the bulk of the popidation in both archipelagoes is evidently of Mela- 
nesian stock, the fine Poljmesian race is in almost exclusive possession of the more 
easterly islets of Anuda (Cherry Island) and Tikopia (Barwell). They are easily 
recognised by their tall stature, robust frame, long hair and bright countenance. 
The people of Futuna and Aniwa, the " Madeira " of the New Hebrides, towards the 
southern extremity of the group, are also Polynesians; the very names they have 
given to" their new homes are taken from the lands in the vicinity of the Tonga 
Islands. Judging from the description given of them b)' Queiros, it is highly 
probable that the natives of the Taumaco or Duff Islets, north-east of Santa- 
Cruz, also belong to the same family. Those of Nukapu, a chief member of the 
Santa-Cruz cluster, are the issue of a crossing between the two oceanic elements, 
for their language is essentially Polynesian, closely related to the Maori, while 
their usages connect them with the Melanesians. 


In the New Hebrides tlie women are as a rule very harshly treated. Many 
things permitted to the husband are declared " taboo " for the wife by the chiefs 
and priests. The latter are potent wizards, who control wind and rain, conjure 
or expel the spirits and ailments, hold converse with the ancestry, the gods of the 
tribe, and communicate their pleasure to the living. They formerly presided at the 
cannibal banquets, for anthropophagy, till recently more prevalent in eastern 
Melanesia than in any other oceanic' region, had assumed a religious character. 
Prisoners of war and the enemy slain in battle ■were devoured, in order to acquire 
their strength and courage ; but the taste for human flesh had also introduced the 
cu&tom of eating their own dead, or else exchanging them for those of friendly 

These practices could not fail to earn for the Santa- Cruz and New Hebrides 
natives a reputation for ferocity and wickedness. Nevertheless there can be no 
doubt that in the mutual relations between Melanesians and whites the latter have 
been far more treacherous and cruel than the former. If Bishop Patteson was 
killed in the island of Nukapu in 1871, he fell by the hand of a man who had 
just been robbed of his children. According to Markham, the natives of Erro- 
mango who murdered the missionary Williams make use of firearms only against 
the whites, whom they regard as kidnappers. In their local wars between 
kindred tribes they would consider it disgraceful to employ the new weapons. 

Cannibalism survives only in a small number of islands ; in the southern groups, 
the most frequented by Europeans, it has become a mere tradition. In point of 
fact, several of the New Hebrides, although not officially annexed by any European 
power, belong none the less to the whites, who govern the jDeople and make them 
work on the plantations, thus gradually reducing them to the condition of the 
proletariate classes in Europe. 

Anatom (Aneitium), lying nearest to New Caledonia, is exclusively in- 
habited by Christian converts who can both read and write. In some other 
islands, also, the Christian congregations already outnumber the pagan element. 
But Espiritu Santo, largest of the New Hebrides, despite the brilliant future 
predicted for it by its discoverer, Queiros, is one of those that have been least 
visited by Europeans, and that still possess but slight economic value. Its vast 
and perfectly sheltered "port" of Vera Cruz, where "four thousand vessels 
Hiight easily find room," has remained almost deserted ; nor has any planter yet 
settled on the banks of the " Jordan." 

In 1828 the discovery of sandalwood in Erromango gave rise to a nefarious 
traffic with China, which gradually ceased w:ith the disappearance of the forests. 
The traders added to the traffic in sandalwood that of "living ebony," and 
especially of women. 

The commercial centre of the New Hebrides is the island of Vat^, or Efat, 
better known by its English name of Sandwich. Some European settlers have 
established themselves near Fori Havammh and in other parts of the island, where 
they cultivate maize, rice, cotton, tobacco and coffee ; in 1882 the coffee planta- 
tions alone comprised one hundred thousand shrubs. But Sandwich, althoxi»h 



remarkably fertile, is one of the most insalubrious islands in the whole archi- 
pelago. The New Hebrides planters forward corn, fruits, pigs and poultrj^ to 
Noumea, capital of New Caledonia, and a large part of the archipelago is owned by 
a New Caledonian company. 

■ In the Appendix will be found a table of the Santa Cruz and Now Hebrides 
groups, with their areas and populations. 

III. — French Melanesia : New CALEnoxiA and the Loyalty Islands. 

New Caledonia, one of the largest oceanic islands east of Australia, has an area 
of nearly 7,000 square miles, and about 8,000 including the adjacent islets and 
the Loyalty group. It also enjoj's exceptional importance from its position on 
the great highway of nayigatiou between Sydney and San Francisco. But, what- 
ever be its present and future economic yalue, its notoriety has hitherto been mainly 
due to the part it has played as a French convict station since 1864, and especially 
since the fall of the Commune. So small has the earth become that no event can 
happen without being felt as far as the Antipodes. After having been a place of 
exile for thousands of Frenchmen involved in political and social storms, this 
Melanesian land has become the jail of other thousands condemned by the laws of 
their country, and subjected to experiments in a new order of penal treatment. In 
fact, New Caledonia is less a colony, as it is conventionally called, than a region 
affording .scope for philanthropy and criminal jurisprudence to test their respec- 
tive reforming and punitive systems. 

The political destiny of New Caledonia presents but few elements of permanent 
stability. Annexed to the French colonial empire in 1853, owing to a shipwrecked 
crew having been eaten by the nalives, this remote oceanic land has, so to say, no 
military or commercial basis to facilitate its retention as a French possession. It 
is over 4,000 miles distant from Cochin China, and nearlj' 3,000 from Tahiti, the 
chief French island in the East Pacific, while it is surrounded on all sides by large 
British colonies or territories — peninsular New Guinea in the north-west, the 
southern section of the Solomon Archipelago in the north, Fiji in the east, New 
Zealand in the south-east, and in the west the vast Australian continent, with its 
thriving and expansive populations. Strictly speaking, New Caledonia is a geo- 
graphical dependency of Queensland, and the irresistible progress of Australia 
scarcely leaves a doubt that the natural force of gravity will sooner or later draw 
it within the political sphere of the neighbouring continent. Already most of its 
commercial and industrial undertakings are organised by British speculators, and 
English terms enter largely into the " bichlamar " jargon, which serves as the 
medium of intercourse between the whites and the natives in their mutual trading 
and shipping relations. 

Owing to its remoteness from the highway followed by the Spanish galloons 
plying between Mexico and the Philippines, New Caledonia, notwithstanding its 
extent, was one of the last oceanic lands discovered by explorers. It was first 
sighted in 1774 near its northern extremity bj' Cook, who afterwards skirted the 

VOL. XIV. z 


east coast, and discovered, at the south-east end, Kunie, to which he gave the 
name of the Isle of Pines. Sixteen years hiter d'Eutrecasteaux coasted the west 
side and surveyed the reef lying over 150 miles farther north. ' 

The Loyalty Islands still remained unknown, and Butler, who discovered them 
in 1800 or 1803, did little more than annonnce their existence. The systematic 
oxploration both of this group and of New Caledonia itself was reserved for 
Duniont d'Urville in 1827. But much remained still to be done before the coast- 
lines, with their fringing reefs, could be accurately laid down, and New Caledonia 
had already been declared a French possession before the discovery, in 1854, of the 
fine roadstead of Noumea, which has become the commercial centre of the colony. 

Now, however, New Caledonia is one of the best-known lands in the oceajiic 
world. It evidently forms with the j^arallel Loyalty group a geographical whole, 
although the surface rocks are of different geological formation. Disposed exactly 
in the same direction, from north-west to south-east, they are, in fact, two mountain 
ranges, one of which, the western, is completely upraised in a continuous mass, 
while the highest summits of the other still lie below the surface as foundations 
for the superstructure of insular coralline banks. Roefs and shoals, also resting 
on submerged primitive or volcanic rocks, continue both ranges seawards, and 
between the two flows a deep marine trough, where the sounding line has failed to 
touch the bottom in 350 fathoms of water. Compared with the other oceanic lands, 
the New Caledonian orographic sj^stem harmonises with the general disposition of 
the upraised chains. It forms a folding in the earth's crust parallel with that 
which caused the upheaval of the Solomon group. 

Excluding the reefs and contiguous islets the large island presents the form of 
a very elongated regular oval, 250 miles long with a mean breadth of not more 
than 30 miles. Nearly the whole of the surface is covered with hills and moun- 
tains of very irregular form and elevation. The south-eastern uplands form 
isolated masses separated by intervening plains, partly marshy and studded with 
small lakes, whose overflow is discharged in various directions. These plains are 
perfectly level, while the escarpments of the surrounding hills rise abruptly as if 
from deep water. The soil is a hard and ferruginous clay, interspersed with 
nodules of black and red iron, and for the most part completely arid. In some 
places are seen scanty tufts of grass, and in a few more favoured spots ajjpear 
dense thickets rising like green oases in the midst of the barren steppe. 

Farther north and near the east coast, which, on the whole, is rather more 
elevated than the opposite side, the Humboldt Peak attains an elevation of over 
5,300 feet, and was long supposed to bo the culminating point of the island. Some 
12 miles to the west, and near a bay ramifying into several creeks, stands the rival 
eraineuce of the Dent de Saint Vincent (4,750 feet). North of these heights the 
whole breadth of the land is occupied by mountains, which, however, gradually 
fall in the direction of the north-west, where few summits exceed 3,000 feet. But 
towards the north-east extremity these uplands assume the aspect more of a coast- 
range, and here attain their greatest altitude in the Panie Peak (5,385 feet), and 
in another rounded crest nearly 5, GOO feet high. 



In New Caledonia tbe prevailing formations are sj-enites, serpentines, dioritcs, 
metamorphic schists, and trachites. The very pumice cast up as flotsam by the 
waves attests the existence of former eruptive centres. The great geological resem- 
blance of these rocks to the East Australian ranges at one time held out expectations 
of rich auriferous discoveries ; but the financial results of the local mining opera- 
tions have not hitherto been encom-aging. The metals which really occur in 
abundance, and which may j-et contribute to the industrial prosperity of New 
Caledonia, are iron, nickel, cobalt, antimonj', and chromium. Copper mines have 
also been worked, and coalfields, though of little economic value, have been dis- 
covered at the foot of the serpentine rocks on the seaboard. 

Fig. 144. — New Caleponia. 

Snlr. I : 5,(X»-i noo. 

1,000 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

New Caledonia is at least doubled in size by the reefs skirting its shores and 
extending it in the direction of the north-west and south-east. The hydrographic 
surveys of Chambovron and other explorers leave no doubt of the existence of 
these fringing and barrier reefs on the east side, though their presence had been 
denied by Darwin and Dana. Towards the southern extremity, however, the 
encircling coralline rocks disappear below the surface, at first a few yards, ther 
from 16 to 20 fathoms, forming, north of the central passage, near the Isle of 
Pines, a continuous bank, above which ri.*e at intervals chaplcts of coral, sonic 

z 2 


emerging, some still covered by water. In its middle and northern sections 
Chambeyron's "great barrier reef " everywhere presents a uniform mass from 200 
to 1 ,000 yards broad, interrupted only by a few passes, which give access to a 
broad and deep sheet of smooth water flowing between the reef and the mainland. 
This basin is about 6 miles wide and from 25 to 30 fathoms deep towards the 
centre ; but the navigation is endangered by a few hidden shoals occurring near 
both margins. 

Seawards the great reef sinks rapidly, and then at a mean distance of 450 
j'ards plunges abruptly into depths of over 350 fathoms. Nowhere else does 
Darwin's hypothesis regarding the slow subsidence of fringing coralline reefs 
appear to be better supported than in these waters. The coral builders work with 
surprising rapidity on the New Caledonian reefs. North of the mainland the 
two branches of the fringing barrier do not converge, but, on the contrary, grow 
wide apart and stretch for a distance of 160 miles before they become reunited 
north of the Huon, Fabre, Leleizour, and Surprise islets. Between this perfect 
atoll and the north end of the great island, the lagoon, enclosed by the two barrier 
reefs, is occujjied in its central part by the Belep group, which comprises the islets 
of Art and Pott. 

The Loyalty chain, built up by polypi, presents in a summary form the whole 
history of coralline islands. The Petrie and Astrolabe reefs in the north are 
dangerous shoals, awash with the surface and grouped as atolls. Uvea, following 
southwards, is a semi-circular coral plateau, perfectly horizontal, with a mean 
height of 50 to 60 feet, and enclosing a lagoon 9 fathoms deep. Lifu, largest 
member of the archipelago, is also an ancient atoll, which has been upraised at 
successive epochs to an altitude of 300 feet. The observer easily distinguishes 
the three terraces marking three consecutive upheavals, and disposed in abrupt 
scarps like the outer cliff at present washed by the waves. Mare, or Nengone, 
some 30 feet higher than Lifu, develops five horizontal terraces, which indicate a 
corresponding number of changes between the level of land and sea. Having risen 
above the surface at a more remote period than the other islands. Mare is also 
more fertile, better wooded, and relatively more densely peopled. To judge from 
the numerous shells of still surviving species which occur on the upper terraces 
and which partly retain their colours, the last upvvard movement must have taken 
place in recent geological times. 

With a mean annual rainfall of about 40 inches, New Caledonia is abundantly 
watered by numerous streams, one onlj' of which is sufficiently copious to deserve 
the name of river. This is the Diahot, which rises at the foot of the Panie Peak 
and flows parallel with the east coast to Harcourt Bay, between the two north- 
western promontories of the island. Including its windings the Diahot is over 60 
miles long, and in its tidal reaches is accessible to craft drawing 8 or 10 feet of 
water. The Toutouta, which falls into Saint Vincent Bay, north-west of Noumea, 
as well as several other rivulets, flows for a large part of its course, below the sur- 
face, and near its source in Mount Humboldt develops a copious cascade at a 
height of 4,000 feet above the sea. Judging from their high temperature some 


brooks api^ear to be fed by thermal springs. Owing to the absence of hills to 
intercept the rain-water, none of the Loyalty group have any permanent streams, 
while the moisture collected in the limestone cavities is so charged with impurities 
that the natives mostly prefer cocoanut milk. 

Climate— Flora — Faiina. 

■ Lj'ing entirely within the torrid zone, New Caledonia has a mean temjjerature 
of over 70° F. But despite the moderating influence of the surrounding waters, 
the difference is considerable between that of summer and winter. The Austral 
summer is the season of rains, of variable winds and storms, which at times assume 
the character of real hurricanes. But they are seldom felt in the northern part 
of the island, where the trade winds with their regular atmospheric phenomena 
prevail during the summer months. Although the average rainfall is about 40 
inches, some districts, especially in the north, occasionally suffer from long 

One of the most remarkable facts is the surjirisiug salubrity of New Caledonia. 
While so many other lands under the same equatorial zone are justly dreaded, 
especially by European settlers, white labourers can here till the soil with 
impunity, at times even in marshy districts. This privileged climate can be 
explained neither by the influence of the trades or the sea breezes, nor by the 
porous nature of the coralline coastlands, for the other oceanic regions within the 
tropics enjoy the same advantages. The fringing reefs, however, are all " living," 
not "dead," corals, as in the New Hebrides. But according to the natives and 
colonists, the true cause of the excellent climate is the nianU {melaleuca leiica- 
dendron), a beneficent plant, which flourishes alike on the arid slopes and in the 
swampy tracts, and which would appear to be for New Caledonia what the 
eucalyptus is for Australia. This member of the myrtle family, which in appear- 
ance resembles the birch, supplies to perfumery the volatile oil of the cayaput, 
like the other variety of melaleuca found in Burn, one of the Moluccas. 

While presenting great rliversity according to the varied nature of the soil, 
the New Caledonian flora is on the whole extremely rich, regard being had to the 
small extent of the island. Brongniart enumerates 1,300 species, of which 1,100 are 
dicotyledons, a fact which lends support to the theory that New Caledonia is but 
a surviving fragment of a much larger region now submerged. In the volcanic 
districts, the conifer, myrtle, and casua'rina families are represented by several 
special forms ; but in the same districts there is an almost total absence of herbaceous 
vegetation, so that stock-breeding is here absolutely impossible. Even gardens 
cannot be laid out on this thankless soil. 

The sedimentary formfttions, which prevail in the northern districts, have a 
different flora in which both forest and grassy tyi^es are represented in great 
variety ; but here the indigenous vegetation has already been modified by confla- 
grations and clearings, and partly replaced by intruding plants, which are every- 
where encroaching on the older forms. Amongst them is the audropogon aUionii, 



a grass whose seeds arc liaiiiilcss i'm- horses and horned catlle, hut fatal (o 
sheep. Sandalwood, foiiiioily a (jliief source ol' wealth, has nearly disappeared, 
and the finest forest trees still surviving are the danimara, araucaria, and 

As in most other oceanic lands the fauna is extremely poor, the only indigenous 
mammals being a rat and a large variety of bat. The only reptile is a snake very 

I'ig. 14.3. — Nati\'e op M,ui]!, LoYALrsr Isles. 

common in the marshy districts, and the only noxious vermin are a centipede, a 
spider, and a scorpion. Of the 107 .species of birds hitherto observed by naturalists 
several are common to New Zealand, to Australia, and even the Sunda Islands ; but 
some are peculiar to New Caledimia, as, for instance, the Kagu {rhuinchetiisjuhafiis), 
which shows certain affinities both to (he heron and the stork, but which, like the 
apteryx and some other local species, is already tlircatcned with extinction. 

Imiaiutan rs. 


The discovery of polished jade liatcbets in Ihe qiuiternary formations of New 
Caledonia attests the presence of man in these oceanic lands from a very remote 
epoch ; attempts have even been made to discriminate the descendants of the 
primitive element amongst the present tribal groups. But, however this be, 
the kaitakiis* or " men," belong mainly to the Melancsian family, as shown by 

Fill U6 — Native of jrAKic, Loyalty Islfs. 

their almost black, or at least deep brown complexion, highly prominent cheek- 
bones, and crisp or frizzly hair, naturally of a black colour, but in many districts 
still dyed yellow or white with lime. The lobe of the ear is also jiiercod for the 
insertion of wood, bone and other ornaments, and the heads of the children of 

* This now familiar Polynesian term denotes no particular race, but is commonly applied hy tbe 
French in a collective sense to all the inhabitants of New Caledonia and the neighbouring archipelagoes. 



toth sexes are artificial!}' deformed, the object being to elongate that of the boys 
and shorten that of the girls. Tattooing has become rare, and is scarcely practised 
at all except by the women, who puncture arms and chest by a painful process, 
which leaves an indelible blue ijattern. The custom of smearing the body with 
soot is also falling into abeyance according as clothes take the place of the primi 
tive rudimentary costume. 

I'atriarchal right prevails among the New Caledonian tribes. AH power and 

Fig. 147. — New Caledonian 'Man. 

property are inherited by the eldest son whether by birth or adoption ; but although 
the idea of property is thoroughly developed, custom requires all produce to be 
shared in a brotherly way amongst the members of the community. When 
provisions abound, all, even the dead, have their portion ; the emigrant also 
presents all his earnings to the chief to be equally distributed throughout the 
tribe. But amongst the tribes themselves there exists scarcely any political union ; 



80 many clans, so muny nations, now allies now enemies, and all speaking different 
dialects, though of a common stock language. 

Nevertheless, the tribes are usually grouped during hostilities in the two 
confederacies of the Ots and Wawaps. Each group is constituted under a monar- 
chical form, with a chief whose person is sacred, and to whom all owe not only 
deference, but also forced labour for the plantations, structures, fisheries, and 
transport of provisions. In the native villages, the chief's house is at ouce 

Fij;. 148— New Caledosiam Woma>'. 



M\.^ ■= 

recognised by its size and its pointed cone terminating in little wisps of straw and 
a few tillits, or bark banderols. The dwelling of a great chief is still more 
ornamented, for the chief is the " sun " of his tribe, and at his death the luminary 
is said to have " set." He is bound to summon the council of elders on all serious 
occasions, such as judicial inquiries and sentences, proclamations of war or peace, 
the organisation of the pilii-pi/ti, or national festivities and banquets. 


Every village possesses a supreme tahn, a sacred image carved in hard wood, 
embellished with bat skins and set up on a long pole with its face turned towards 
the east. According to some authorities the chiefs and nobles are, for the most 
part, of Polynesian origin, and are distinguished by their physical aj^pearance from 
their Melanesian subjects. Not only is the complexion said to be lighter, but the 
forehead would appear to be higher and broader, the nose straighter, the lips 
thinner, the figure taller, the carriage more haughty. This Polynesian element 
is naturally most widely rej^re rented on the east side facing the oceanic homes of 
this race. 

Like so many other insular populations, the New Caledonian kanakas appear to 
be dying out. " We are not like our forefathers," said a chief to Brenchley, 
" they were numerous and wise ; we are neither." Travellers estimated at about 
sixty thousand the population towards the middle of the present century, and in 
1886 they had already been reduced to twenty-three thousand. At the same time 
this diminution must be partly attributed to the constant massacres followed by 
cannibal feasts, for the enemy slain in battle were always devoured. The bodies 
were fairly divided amongst the warriors, who in their turn distributed the 
" joints " in equal portions amongst their families. When the European mariners 
first made their appearance the natives had never seen any other meat except that 
of their fellow-creatures, and fancied that the beef distributed to the crews was the 
flesh of gigantic human beings. 

The iusurrectioa of 1878 cost the lives of a thousand natives, besides one thou- 
sand two hundred transported to the Island of Pines and other jilaces. Never- 
thele-is the losses caused by wars and revolts are trifling compared to the numbers 
who perish by ailments, such as consumption, introduced by the Europeans. 
Drink also claims many victims, since the invasion of the dealers in " tafia." 
Alliances between the white convicts, soldiers or settlers, and the native women 
are rare, because the kanakas hold in great contempt the tai/o carahou)^, or " people 
of the prison." Hence there is no hope of a half-caste race gradually absorbing 
the whole native element by fresh unions. 

Little success has attended the attempts of the landowners to employ native 
labour on their plantations. The tribal groups themselves possess reserves, the 
collective enjoyment of which is guaranteed to them by the state. Hence they 
naturally prefer to cultivate maize, manioc or taro on their own account, than to 
toil on the tobacco, sugar, or cofl'ee plantations of the whites. Hence, also, the 
accusations of the inveterate indolence brought against them, and the efforts to 
replace them by hands " engaged " in other islands, and held in a sort of slavery 
by advances difficult to refund under several j-ears of hard work. Over two 
thousand labourers have thus been introduced, chiefly from the Loyalty and New 
Hebrides grouf)s. 

The' political convicts transjDorted in 1872, to the number of about four thousand 
five hundred, have nearly all left the colony. Some few, who had developed 
j)rofitable industries in Noumea, have alone declined to take advantage of the free 
pardon granted to all in 1880. Ordinary convicts number at present about twelve 





(bousaiul, of wlioiu the niiijoiily are enipldyed on the public works ; as man}' as 
twelve hundred have been handed over to mining or industrial companies, and 
some six hundred enjoy a relative measure of freedom in the agricultural peniten- 
tiaries, where they cultivate their own "concessions." The conWcts thus gradually 
merge in the class of the free citizens, who, though still far inferior in numbers to 
the criminals and their keepers, cannot fail ultimately to predominate, being 
continually recruited by the descendants of convicts restored to their civil lights. 
Uut most of these families must die out, because very few women are transjjortod 
to New Caledonia ; at present they number scarcelj^ one hundred and fif tj' in the 
whole island. Nevertheless, some families are perpetuated, and, as hapjjened in 
Australia, the offspring of these convicts have already begun to protest against a 
further importation of the criminal classes from Eurojje. 

Free immigration is but slightly developed, and the "colony" still piossesses 
fewer colonists than officials. Doubtless the government offers to all immigrant 
labourers a free grant of ten acres of arable land and fifty of pasturage, on the 
condition of residing a few j-ears on the estate and bringing it under cultivation. 
But the es.says at coloiii-sation have hitherto been so disastrous that the unfortunate 
squatters have had to be restored from time to time to their native land. The 
competition of penitentiary labour deprives the small holders of all hope of success. 

The most numerous and flourishing settlers are the Australians, some hundreds 
of whom have settled in the agricultural districts, where they devote themselves 
chiefly to stock-breeding. With their knowledge of the climate, of the natives and 
the local economic conditions, they are able to face the difficulties of colonisation in 
its initial stages with more confidence than the ignorant peasantry imported from 

Large estates have already been created, and so early as 1880 one .speculator 
owned as many as 42,000 acres in a single holding. Yet stock-breeding, the only 
industry of these extensive landowTiers, possepses but a slight relative importance. 
In the whole of New Caledonia there are less than 100,000 head of cattle, scared}' 
20.000 sheep, and but a few hundred horses introduced from Norfolk Island. A total 
area of 50,000 acres is reserved by the state for all the agricultural penitentiaries. 


Notniicd, or Port-<ic-Firniri>, as it was called during the first years of the 
occupation, is the capital, and the only town in New Caledonia and its depen- 
dencies. It has a population of four thousand, or about one-half of all the resident 
civil and military Europeans. Founded in 1854 after the submission of the 
Nguea, or Numea tribe, it occupies a favourable commercial position towards the 
southern extremity of the island on the side facing Australia. Here a wide 
opening in the outer barrier reef commimicates with several roadsteads, all 
perfectly sheltered by the neighbouring hilly penin.sula and adjacent islands. 
The lai-gest expanse, opening in the north-west between the islet of Nou and the 
Duces peninsula, is spacious enough to receive a whole fleet. The whole trade of 



New Ciik'clonia is at present centred in Noumea, which, as a town, is still in its 
infancy, but for which an abundant supjjly of water has been brought from a 
distance of 11 miles. The chief thoroughfares are planted with trees ; a fine 
garden encircles the government palace, and pleasant walks winding up the slopes 
of the encircling hills lead down to the inlets on the opposite side of the peninsula. 

Fig. 149. — Noumea. 
Scale I : U'O.CKX). 

Ji,-ryfor-v/a/' ^ Sou/^n 


Beyond this peninsida the main highway from Noumea ramifies in various direc- 
tions through the island. 

Noumea is surrounded by "penitentiaries," or convict stations, such as those 
of the island of Nou, with three thousand inmates, of the Ducos peninsida, where 
eight hundred Communists were detained, and of Montravel, set apart for military 
criminals. Others are engaged on the public works in and about the cajjital, 
while the Marist missionaries employ a large number on their gardens and 
plantations at Saint-Louis, east of Noumea. 


Farther north follow along the west coast the military posts and settlements 
Fig. loO. — DwELLFNa of a Nattve Chief, New Caledonia. 

of Bouloujmri, near Saint Vincent liay; Foa and Teremba, or Urai, markets for 



the surrounding farmsteads; Boiirai/, the most important agricultural centre in 
tte island, connected b}' good roads with the rising port of Gouaro ; Gomen, on a 
spacious and safe roadstead, with a mladcro for the preparation of tinned beef. 

The middle course of the Diahot, towards the north- east extremity of the 
island, is the richest mineral district in French Melanesia. Here the Balade 
mountain is traversed in all directions by metalliferous veins, including gold, 
copper, pyrites, and nickel. At the time of the discovery in 1872, crowds flocked 

Fi's- lol.-IsLE OF Pines. 
Scale .1 : 350,000. 



160 Feet and 

to the spot from Australia, hamlets sprang up in the midst of the wilderness, 
mining companies were formed, and the district began to assume the aspect of a 
Queensland cantonment, when a financial crash brought about the ruin of all these 
undertakings. Since then a mining association, supported by the government, 
has made all further competition impossible ; the Australians have retired, and 
the mining population is reduced to a small group at Ouegoa, guarded by a mili- 


tary post. Most of the ores are shipped at Caillou, on the Diahot estuary. The 
road from this port leads across themountaiu down to the historic village of Balade, 
the first sighted by Cook in 1774, and the first occupied by the French in ISoS. 

Kuuala, founded in 1859, may be regarded as the ciipital of the east coast ; it 
lies near a deep inlet, completely sheltered by a hilly peninsula, and is both a 
mining and agricultural centre. The nickel of Kanala, Hoaailou and Thio, 
worked almost exclusively by Australian miners, who spread the English language 
amongst the natives, is the richest and purest hitherto discovered in any part 
of the world. 

A few short railways traverse the mining districts ; but the general communi- 
cations are still in a backward state, notwithstanding the fact that the government 
has at its disposal over ten thousand labourers. 

The inhabited islands depending on New Caledonia — Art and Pott in the north, 
the Island of Pines at the southern extremity of the barrier reefs — have neither 
large villages nor frequented ports. The last mentioned is a penal settlement, 
where the three thousand Communists, formerly working in the forest clearings, 
have now been replaced by Kanaka exiles, invalid or aged convicts, and others 
condemned to perpetual banishment. 

In the Lojalty group the centre of administration is established at Chepenehe, 
in the island of Lifu, a port frequented by traders from Sj-dney. 

Some 300 miles west of New Caledonia, a large atoll, comprising the islets of 
Chesterfield, Bampton and Avon, occupies the centre of the waters flowing betw eeu 
New Caledonia and the Great Barrier Reef south of the Coral Sea. In 1878, 
France took possession of this group, though it had been discovered by English 
navigators in 1793, and afterwards surveyed by British exploring expeditions. 
Great Britain and Australia have accordingly protested against this political 
annexation. Chesterfield and the neighbouring islets, formerly much frequented 
by whalers, have some guano deposits worked by a few traders. 


Till 1860, New Caledonia was regarded as a dependency of the French 
Oceanic establishments, of which Tahiti was the centre. Now it is administered 
by a Governor assisted by a Colonial Council, comprising the chief local officials, 
two notables, and some municipal delegates. Noumea is the only commune 
possessing a municipal council, the colonists in the rest of the island being 
represented by an elective Colonial Council, and in France by a special delegate to 
the Colonial Office. The judicial system is the same as in France, the native 
chiefs acting as magistrates for crimes committed in the tribe. The police, also, 
are recruited from the natives in Noumea and throughout the island. 

New Caledonia proper comprises the five circumscriptions of Noumea, Kanala, 
Bourail, Oubache and the North. The yearly budget varies from £80,000 to £120,000, 
and since the occupation the colony has cost France altogether £8,000,000. 



HE very name of Australia recalls the mimerous voyages which, 
previous to Cook's decisive expedition, were undertaken in search 
of a vast Austral continent supposed to balance in the south the 
immensely preponderating extent of upheaved land in the northern 
hemisphere. But, reduced by the illustrious navigator to its true 
proportions, this southern region can no longer be considered as a "make-weight" 
to the continents Ijnng north of the equator. Nevertheless, it is still extensive 
enough to be regarded as one of the great sections of the globe comparable to the 
southern divisions of Africa and America. It may thus be considered as one, of the 
three southern continents which are connected with those of the north either by 
narrow isthmuses, or by continous chains of islands. The insular lands uniting it 
with the Asiatic peninsulas belong themselves in great measure to the Australian 
zone by their climate and natural productions. The Austral mainland is, more- 
over, considerably increased in extent bj' a submarine bed fringed with 
barrier reefs. Its superficial area with that of the adjacent islands scarcely 
exceeds three-fourths of that of Europe ; but with the other lands stretching from 
New Guinea to New Zealand, the whole area of the upraised land in this part of 
the South Sea is very nearly equal in extent to the European continent. 

General Survey. 

Eut in other respects what a profound difference between these two antipo- 
dean lands ! Relatively speaking, the one is the mo&t densely, the other the most 
sparsely peopled division of the world, the discrepancy between the two being in 
the proportion of a hundred to one. At the same time it should be remembered 
that Australia has but entered on the career of its evolution in the common stream 
of human culture, while its new occupants have already made astounding progress 
in numbers and influence. Still, this region is" far from enjoying the advantages 
in physical constitution and climatic conditions that have made Europe a privileged 
section of the globe. Compared with this favoured region, Australia presents the 
heavy, shapeless outlines of a rough-hewn block, being, for the most part, deficient 
in lofty mountain ranges, extensive river basins ramifj'ing in all directions, fertile 






J E 80 CO LIMlTEn 


alluvial plains, deep marine inlets penetrating far into the interior, and those 
other diversified features which impart to Europe the aspect of an organised body 
with proper adjustment of parts. 

Nevertheless, civilised man is able by science and industiy to make himself 
more and more independent of his inconvenient surroundings, and to turji their 
limited resources to the best account. The underground reservoirs of water are 
brought to the surface by simple mechanical appliances ; scrubby tracts are 
continually brought under cultivation ; artificial highways supplj^ the want of 
navigable routes. Habitable regions are stcadil}' encroaching on the wilderness, 
and become daily more accessible. 

The Australian continent has thus rapidly assumed a position in the com- 
mercial world which it could never have acquired before the age of railways and 
steam navigation. In many respects it has become the first of British colonies, 
and from the political standpoint, even without fleets and armies, its immense 
reserve of growing strength contributes greatly to consolidate the vast colonial 
empire of Great Britain. The great navigable highwaj^ connecting England, 
through the Mediterranean and Red Sea, with her immense Asiatic possessions is 
continued south- eastwards across the Indian and Pacific Oceans, until, at about an 
equal distance, it meets the Australian continent, which has for ever become the 
exclusive appanage of the Anglo-Saxon race. The longer maritime route from 
London, round the Cape, to Melbourne and Sj-dney, has also, for intermediate 
station, the British South- African colonies. Thus, during his long voyage of nearly 
16,000 miles across half the circumference of the globe, the ciris BrifcnmicKS 
touches Eiiglish territory alone ; everywhere he sees his social and political insti- 
tutions firmly established, everywhere he hears the familiar soimds of his 
mother tongue ; he moves from hemisphere to hemisphere, but scarcel}' feels that 
he has quitted his native land. 

To appreciate at its full value the influence exercised, if not by England, at 
least by the English element, in the history of mankind, the United States must 
be added to Great Britain with its innumerable colonies and boundless possessions. 
With this large section of the terrestrial surface inhabited by over one hundred 
millions of his kindred, the Englishman may look forward with full confidence in 
the destiny of his race. The Russian continental world, embracing half of 
Europe and of Asia, is more than balanced by the British Oceanic world, which 
sweeps round the whole periphery of the globe. 

Progress of Discoveky. 

The first voyages of discovery extended by the Portuguese to the Australian 
Seas remained unknown, or, at most, left nothing behind except vague rumours 
indelibly traced on a few cartographic documents. That island of " Great Java," 
already figuring on the maps dating from the first half of the sixteenth century,* 
presents .such accurate contours as to leave no doubt of the presence of some 

* R. H. Major ; Ear!;/ Voyages to Terra Aiistralis, now called Australia. 
VOL. XI v. A A 



unknown Lusitanian mariners in these latitudes. Even Torres' expedition of 
160(3, through the reef-studded strait seiJarating New Guinea from Australia, was 
forgotten, and would, perhajDS, be still buried in oblivion but for the learned 
researches of Dalrymple. 

To the Dutch navigators is due the accurate knowledge of a great part of the 
Australian seaboard, and the name of New Holland given by its discoverers to 
this region has not yet been quite forgotten. Towards the middle of the seven- 
teenth century, while this appellation still prevailed in geographical nomenclature, 
a considerable section of the coasts had already been explored. In 1606, the 
Diiyfkcn, equipped by the Dutch for a voyage of discovery, had probably touched 

Fig. 152.— Comparative Areas of Austealia and the British Isles. 
Scale 1 : 40,000,000. 

the eastern shores of the Gulf of Carpentaria, and advanced along the coast as far 
as Cape Keer-weer, or " Return." In 1616, the EeiuIracM skirted the west side 
of the continent, and till recently the name of this vessel still figured on the maps. 
Three years later Edel discovered the south-west point of Australia, and he was 
followed by the captain of the Leeuu-iii, who, with Peter Nuyts, successfully 
navigated the southern waters, while in the north and north-west, other Dutch 
mariners sighted lands to which they gave the names of Witt and Arnhem. The 
discovery of the western half of the continental periphery was completed in 1644 
by Abel Tasman, who had, two years previously, sailed round a great part of the 



island of Van Diemen's Land, which now bears his name. He had, however, 
failed to determine its insular character. 

It was reserved for Cook to lead the way in the exploration of the east Austra- 
lian seaboard, and to confirm the anticipations made by Desbrosses on the chart 
accompanying his historical work on the voyages of discovery in the Austral Seas.* 
In 1770, Cook, after discovering Botany Bay, sailed northwards between the 
mainland and the Great Barrier Reef, and then penetrated into Torres Strait, thus 
at last placing beyond doubt the insular character both of New Guinea and 

Fig. 153. — Chief RotrTES of Austkaliax Explorers. 
Scale 1 : 40,0i»j,ikX'. 

_ 'Tl-.^ur^^*- 

\ \ 

Ea:,b :P Green. 

But it was still uncertain whether Tasmania was the soitth-eaptern promontorv 
of the Austral mainland, and numerous navigators visited this island and cast 
anchor in its harbours before the question was decided by Bass, who first sailed 
through the strait now bearing his name. This event occurred in 1798, ten years 
after the foundation of the first British colony on the coast of New South Wales. 
The exploration of the interior had also commenced bj' short expeditions between 
the seaboard and the east slopes of the Blue Mountains, but these ramparts were 
not crossed till the year 1813, when some stockbreeders were driven by a long 
drought to seek fresh pastures farther inland. 

• Sistoire do Xarigadonii aiijr Tores Auslrales. 
A A 2 


Our knowledge of the Interior was doubtless greatly enlarged by the search for 
grassy lauds, and after the discovery of gold in 1851, by the sudden rush of 
miners to the still unknown alluvial plains and rocky vallej's of the eastern regions. 
But far more was accomplished by the disinterested expeditions of travellers who 
never hesitated to risk their lives in the cause of science and geographical dis- 
covery. And, in truth, the work of Australian exploration has cost the lives of 
many daring pioneers and distinguished naturalists, such as the botanist Cunning- 
ham, the learned Leichhardt, Gray, Burke, Wills, who, with numerous comrades, 
fell victims, either to the spears of the natives or to the hardships, himger, and 
thirst of toilsome journeys across inhospitable lands and the trackless wilder- 

4.nd of those more fortunate pioneers, who brought their expeditions to a 
successful issue, how many proved themselves true heroes, displaying all the 
energy, resolution, and endurance of which man is capable ! For days and weeks 
together they had to study the soil and scan the horizon in search of some stream- 
let, mere, or " water-hole." Fellow-travellers had to disperse in the midst of the 
desert in quest of a little moisture to quench their burning thirst, indicating as 
their rallying-point some distant rock, from which they might easily be beguiled 
by a treacherous mirage. Then the weary ploddings across sandhills, over shingly 
plains, through salt marshes, and thorny scrub ; the deviations in search of stray 
horses ; the intolerable heats beneath brazen skies, followed by the .dangerous 
chills of night ! Altogether the history of Australian exploration forms a chapter 
in the records of heroism, which gives the most exalted idea of the greatness of 

In the series of essays which followed year after year, the decisive journey was 
that made in 1862, after two failures, by MacDouall Stuart, whose itineraries to 
the right and the left resemble the movements of the antennoe of puzzled ants. 
He first succeeded in crossing the Australian continent at its broadest part, from 
Saint Vincent Gulf to the north coast, opiDosite Melville Island. Australia was 
thus severed, as it were, in two by a transverse route, along which stations sprang 
up at intervals, as so many places of refuge, or starting-points for future explorers. 
From these headquarters, which reduced by one-half the distance to be traversed, 
it became possible to penetrate far into the surrounding wilderness, and in 1873 
Warburton at last reached the west coast. The network of itineraries was now 
rapidly extended in all directions, east and west, as well as north and south, and 
the preliminary rough survey of the continent may be regarded as already accom- 
plished. The inland regions are known in their main featui-es, while the details 
are being gradually filled up by the partial expilorations undertaken in connection 
with the telegraph ser^'ice, or in quest of springs and grazing grounds. Never- 
theless there still remain vast spaces, especially in the west, where no European 
has j'ot succeeded in penetrating, and the blank spaces, even on the latest maps, 
between the routes of Giles, Forrest, and Warburton represent altogether an area 
of some 300,000 square miles, or considerably more than double the whole extent 
of the British Isles. 



'¥ig. 154. — MacDoUALl's iTINEEAKIEa. 
Scale 1 : G.OOO.WO. 


lljuly .;_ 

July. V'-'' ^ '^J""' 
J.. V) ;' 20 may 

The explorations carried out iu recent years by the ChaUengcr and other vessels 
have determined with tolerable accuracy the submarine bed on wbich Australia stands, 
and which may be geologically regarded as forming with the mainland a jjartly uji- 
heaved continental mass. In 
the north New Guinea, with the 
clusters and chains of adjacent 
islands, such as the Louisiades 
and Aru, all rest on the com- 
mon pedestal, being united with 
Australia by the reefs dotted 
over Torres Strait and neigh- 
bouring waters. The Gulf of 
Carpentaria and the north- 
western seas nearly as far as 
Timor belong to the same sub- 
marine bank, which in the soulh 
stretches far seawards, and in 
the south-east develops a long 
submerged peninsula, above 
which rises Tasmania, and 
which advances over 900 miles 
into deep water. 

On the east side tbe New 
South Wales seaboard is washed 
by abysses of over 2,000 fathoms, 
while the north-east coast is 
fringed by the Great Barrier 
Reef, which is connected by a 
sill less than 1,000 fathoms deep 
witb Norfolk Island and the 
nortb-west peninsula of New 
Zealand. This connecting line 
between the continent and its 
most remote geological depen- 
dencies is disposed towards the 
south-east in the same direction 
as New Caledonia, the Loyalty, 
and New Hebrides groups, and 
other upraised lands in tbis 
section of the South Sea. 

It is noteworthy that in this 
vast aggregate of Australasian 

lands the continent itself presents the least diversity of relief. Even the loftiest 
Australian ranges are of secondary importance compared with the New Guinea and 




New Zealand orographic systems, and are surpassed even by the mountains of the 
Solomon Archipelago. This circumstance strengthens the hypothesis, according to 
which Australia forms a single geological unit with the lands uovv scattered to the 
north and east. New Guinea, Melanesia, and New Zealand would thus be nothing 
more than the margin of the primitive Austral continent, over half of^hich now lies 
submerged beneath the intervening shallow seas. Numerous examples of similar 
formations occur elsewhere, as in South America, in Africa, and, in a general way, 
round the great Oceanic basin from the Cape of Good Hope to Cape Horn, where 
the loftiest crests also rise immediately above j)rofound marine abysses. 

Physical Features. — Mountain Systems. 

As in other Australasian regions, the highest mountains on the mainland occur 
in the neighbourhood of the seaboard and on the side facing the deep Pacific 
waters. The chief continental crests are disposed in such a way as to form an 
outer crescent sweeping round from York Peninsula to Wilson's Promontory, 
over against Tasmania. Beyond this elevated rim the land falls so uniformly us 
to suggest to the early explorers the existence in the interior of a " Caspian " 
dejiression, into which flowed all the surrounding .streams. But instead of this 
imaginary central sea there exists nothing beyond a few small basins without any 
outflow, while nearly all the important rivers flow directly to the coast. Never- 
theless the plains traversed by them stand at a very low level, in consequence- of 
which disposition of the land the seaboard has been excavated far into the interior 
both on the north and south sides, where have been respectively developed the 
Gulfs of Carpentaria and Saint Vincent. Between these two indentations, which 
are the largest on the whole continental perijahery, the intervening plains scarcely 
anywhere exceed an altitude of 500 feet above sea-level. West of this depression 
the surface again rises, and towards the centre of the continent several of the 
summits exceed 3,000 feet in elevation. 

The chief range, known as the Australian Alps, begins in Victoria, and after 
presenting its convex side towards the South-east, trends round to the left and is 
continued by other chains northwards. The Yass, a headstream of the Murray, 
is regarded as the northern limit of the Australian Alps proper, which have a total 
length of about 250 miles. These highlands deserve the name of Alps less for 
their altitude than for the large number of their collective groups, spurs, offshoots, 
lateral or parallel ridges. They are almost everywhere of easy access, the most 
rugged escarpments being usually situated about midway between base and sum- 
mit, while higher up the slopes are more gently inclined, and extensive grassy or 
sparsely wooded plateaux form the pedestal of domes and crests which may be 
ascended even on horseback. The culminating peak, Mount Townshend, in the 
Kosciusko group. New South Wales, attains a height of 7,350 feet. 

In many of these upland valleys the snows never melt, and in winter from 
May to November even the plateaux remain shrouded in a white mantle. A few 
neves are found in the higher ravines of the Kosciusko Mountains, and traces of 
ancient glaciers in various parts of the range. In the Bogong Hills (6,630 feet), 



which lie west of the farthest sources of the Murraj-, a frontal moraine clams up a 
little fluvial valley at an elevation of 2,950 feet. 

In the Australian Alps the prevailing formations are of great age, consisting 
of granites and Silurian masses interspersed with porphyries, diorites, and basalts. 
Here and there tertiary rocks overlie the valleys, but are always disposed horizon- 
tally, whereas the surrounding strata have been diversely folded and dislocated. 

Fig. 1.55. — AusTEAiiAN Alps. 
Scale 1 : o,25u,000. 

East oF Greenwich 


Notwithstanding the intervening depressions the same general features reappear 
farther west in the Yictoria highlands, and even in Tasmania, which belongs in 
great measure to the same geological epoch. The Pyrenees, which, run parallel 
with the coast north-west of Melbourne, and the Grampians, whose irregular forms 
stretch farther west, are also of Silurian formation, though less elevated than the 
Alps, ilouut "\niliam, the culminating point in the Grampians, being scarcely 
5,6.00 feet high. 

But nowhere in Australia have igneous formations been more developed than 


in tliis region of West Victoria, where volcanic cones are reckoned by the hundred 
— some simple eruptive craters, others real mountains 2,000 feet high — belonging 
to every successive period between paleozoic and tertiary times. Several of the 
craters are perfectly circular basins now flooded by lakes of great depth, such as 
the Blue Lake, which occupies the upper cavity of a volcano belonging to the 
Gambler group in South Australia, and which is no less than 675 feet deep. 
Others, which formerly discharged lava streams covering vast expanses, are now 
mere grassy or wooded cirques. All the older volcanoes are on the mainland 
except Tower Hill, near Warrnambool, which rises above the surface of the neigh- 
bouring waters. 

Like the Australian Alps the Tasmanian mountains are formed of granites and 
Silurian deposits. But geologists have hitherto failed to determine the presence 
of volcanoes properly so-called, although in many places eruptive rocks have 
formed transverse barriers over which the running waters fall in cascades down 
to the plains. Nearly the whole island is covered with irregular mountain masses, 
which attain their greatest elevation in the north-west, here culminating in Cradle 
Mountain (5,065 feet). Several other peaks exceed 4,600 feet, but the land falls 
towards the south-east, where the seaboard is penetrated by deep fjords. 

Viewed as a whole Tasmania presents the outlines of half an oval, eroded on the 
north side facing Australia in the form of a regular concave curve. Here the 
intervening waters of Bass Strait were at some former epoch undoubtedly replaced 
by an isthmus connecting both regions^ and of which nothing now survives except 
a few granite islets. But immediately east of the strait the marine abj^sses jjlunge 
into depths of over 2,500 fathoms. From the geological standpoint AVilson's 
Promontory, the southernmost point of the Australian continent, is an island like 
those scattered over the shallow waters of the strait. "Were the mainland to 
subside some 300 feet the two inlets to the west and east of the headland would 
be connected by a second marine channel. 

North of the Australian AIjds the highlands skirting the seaboard ramify into 
several parallel chains, the main range running at a mean distance of 45 or 50 
miles from the Pacific. Each chain and each ti'ansverse ridge has its separate 
name, while the whole system is sometimes designated by the common appellation of 
the Blue Mountains, a term more specially applicable to the mountains lying to the 
west of Sydney, and long regarded by the early settlers as an unsurmountable ram- 
part towards the interior of the continent. Although the highest peaks, such as 
Sea-view, west of Port Macquarie towards the north of New South Wales, scarcely 
exceed 6,000 feet, while most of them fall "below 5,000 feet, they have in many 
places been carved by erosive action into rocky cirques with vertical walls of an 
imfiosing aspect. 

The ranges fall precipitously seaward, while on the opj)osite side they frequently 
present the appearance rather of a gently inclined tableland, the ground sloping 
somewhat uniformly in the direction of the plains watered by the Murray. Exten- 
sive cavities, where the rivulets now escape through breaches in the periphery, 
appear to have formerly been lacustrine basins. Such amongst others on the 





western slope of the mountains are the Liverpool Plains, which are dotted over with 
isolated basalt rocks. Like the regions in the north of Europe, Australia also h;id 
evidently its glacial epoch followed by a lacustrine period. 

In the northern section of ^ew South Wales the water-parting gradually falls 
in the direction of the colony of Queensland, where few summits attain an elevation 
of 2,000 feet. In some districts the mountain system is even completely inter- 
rupted, the parting line between the two slopes being formed by scarcely per- 
ceptible undulations. But eminences exceeding 3,000 feet reappear north of 
the tropic of Capricorn, where a granite ridge skirting the seaboard runs north- 
westwards to the neck of York Peninsula, here merging in a small water-parting 
of moderate elevation. 

Between the Australian Alps and the granites of North Queensland the pre- 
vailing formations are carboniferous of various ages, some dating from paleozoic, 
others from mesozoic times. Here also occur some granites and porphyries, and 
on the western slopes a few volcanoes and lava fields. It is in this section of the 
Australian highlands and on the northern slopes of the Victoria Mountains that 
are scattered those auriferous deposits that have so greatly stimulated the develop- 
ment of Australia. All belong to different periods of the tertiary epoch and rest 
on a rocky bed of the Silurian sj-stem. Most of the deposits f;ll old fluvial channels, 
the so-called " gutters," and in some districts they attain a thickness of over 300 
and even 600 feet. 

West of the " backbone " of the continent the depression comprised between 
the Gulf of Carpentaria and the Murray estuary is largely occupied with cretaceous 
formations. From these mesozoic strata and the vast plains of tertiary origin it is 
evident that Australia, formerly considered as the " old " continent in a pre- 
eminent sense, has also had its revolutions, its alternating upheavals and subsi- 
dences, like other great divisions of the globe. 

Beyond the chalk zone begin the little-known regions intersected at long 
intervals b}' the itineraries of a few daring explorers. We know, however, that 
granites and primitive rocks occur in South Australia on both sides of Spencer 
Gulf, as well as . round the margins of the saline basins in the interior. The 
northern peninsulas facing Melville Island have also their granites and metamoi-- 
phic formations. Lastly, the south-western regions are to a great extent consti- 
tuted of slightly elevated granite plateaux traversed here and there by a mountain 
range from 1,800 to 2,000 feet high. All these chains and ridges are named after 
the early explorers or statesmen distinguished in contemporary politics. The 
MacDouall group, lying east of the overland telegraph lino, abounds in precious 
stones, some of which have been doubtfully or wrongly described as " rubies." 

The " desert sandstone," comprising over one-third of Australia, is probably 
of more recent origin than any of the continental mountain systems. But owing 
to the general absence of fossils its age cannot be accurately determined, although 
the upheaval of the plateaux, hills, and plains in this arid wilderness is by most 
geologists referred to isliocene times. In North Queensland it overlies cretaceous 
formations. Its numerous depressions have been produced by meteoric agencies, 


heat and cold, wind and raiu, and in several places the surface has been excavated 
many tens and even hundreds of yards, leaving here and there masses of harder 
rocks, which indicate the original level of the novr vanished formations. In 
north-west Australia lies the region to which Gray has given the name of "Pillar 
Land," from the myriads of sandstone columns rising above the surrounding plains 
which have been irregularly excavated. This region is carpeted with flowering 
plants and festooned with belts of verdure, while the work of erosion is still con- 
tinued by running waters partly flowing below the surface. 

About the very centre of the continent stands another of these geological 
witnesses, which is known as " Chambers's Pillar," and which rises 150 feet above 
an eminence itself about 100 feet higher than the surrounding plain. This 
column, one of the most regular formations of the kind on the surface of the globe, 
forms a conspicuous landmark much utilised by the early explorers as a rallying 
point, and convenient site for a cache or storehouse of provisions. It is about ten 
feet by twenty in cross section, of nearly equal compass from top to bottom, and 
formed of a soft white sandstone like the hill on which it stands. The upper part 
of the pillar is of a red tint, and its preservation is perhaps due to the greater 
hardness and durability of this topmost layer (Wallace). 

Like the Sahara, the Australian desert has its region of dunes stretching west 
of the overland telegraph on the north-west continental slope. Here the chains 
of sandhills follow each other with perfect regularity, rolling away like the waves 
of the sea for a distance of about 350 miles in the direction from east to west. 
Consisting entirely of red particles, without a blade of grass to relieve their fierce 
glare, these dunes are described by Sturt as producing a "terrible" effect, and no 
traveller ventures to traverse them without a sense of awe. Beyond this dreaded 
region a few verdant and flowery oases are seen here and there in the dreary 
wilderness. The aspect, however, of the Australian desert changes with the dry 
and wet seasons, so that the descriptions of the same district by different explorers 
often present great discrepancies. 

The observations made by geologists on the main features of the continental 
periphery lend much probability to the hypothesis of a general upheaval of the 
Australian seaboard. Its shores, after having been submerged under the waters, 
which at one time covered about half of the surface, were again gradually upr lised 
above the level of the surrounding seas. The coasts are fringed by upheaved 
beaches, in which are embedded banks of shells similar to those still surviving in 
the neighbouring waters. Numerous lakes, which were, till recently, marine 
inlets, have preserved their oceanic fauna, while others have been gradually 
changed to freshwater basins, or have even been completely evaporated. Shoals 
and reefs formerly concealed below the surface now show their black rocks above 
the level of the sea. 

A careful study of the whole region stretching to the north of Spencer Gulf 
leaves no doubt that this tract of dry land at one time formed an archipelago with 
numerous islands separated from each other by shallow straits. Bass Strait itself, 
which forms the southern limit of Australia proper, would be changed to dry land 



by a general upheaval of less than twenty-five fathoms, and Tasmania, which was 
long supposed to form part of the neighbouring continent, really belongs to it 
from the geological point of view. The presence of glaciers probably contributed 
to preserve the primitive form of the Tasmanian seaboard, all the south side of 
which is carved into creeks and inlets, evidently ancient fjords which have main- 
tained their original depth and outlines. 

A close resemblance to the sea which formerly flooded South Australia, is pre- 
sented by the channel at present separating this continent from New Guinea. 
Between Cape York and Mount Cornwallis at the narrowest part of Torres Strait 

Fig. 15G. — Bass Steait. 
Scale I ■■ 5,553,000. 


100 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

the water is nowhere more than eleven or twelve, while the average scarcely 
exceeds seven fathoms. It was shown by the accurate surveys of the F/i/ and 
Bramble (1842—1847) that, even by keeping to the windings of the deepest 
channel, a vessel drawing over 30 feet could only pass through in perfectly 
smooth water. The rocky islets in this strait, whether isolated or grouped in 
clusters, consist exclusively of porphyries or syenites, like the rocks in the northern 
peninsula of Queensland, of which they evidently form a seaward extension. 

East of these reef-fringed islets, between which flow channels perfectly free 



from shoals, begins the true " Coral Sea," which is studded, not with rocky 
heights, but only with a dangerous^ labyrinth of coralline masses, and which taken 
as a whole may be compared to a long submarine bank gradually falling east- 
wards to a mean depth of 20 fathoms. Ilere is the true coastline of the Australian 
continent, and as happens on so many other upraised or submerged seaboards, the 
parting line between the continental plateau and the abysmal depths of the Pacific 
Ocean is marked by an igneous chain. The volcanoes, however, of the Coral Sea 
have all become extinct during the present geological epoch, and none of them 
are of any considerable size, the largest being Murray Island, which lies within 
the zone of the Great Barrier Reef. Although so near the Australian mainland 

Fig. 157. — ToEEES SiiiAiT. 

Scale 1 : 7,750,000. 

of which it is a geological dependence, this island is distinguished from it by its 
vegetation. The beach and even the lower slopes of the hills, which rise to a 
height of 600 or 700 feet, are clothed with a continuous forest of cocoanut palms, 
trees which all travellers assure us were not found in Australia before the arrival 
of the European immigrants. 

The rampart of reefs forming the outer coastline of Queensland and connecting 
Australia with New Guinea has a total development of no less than 1,500 miles, 
without counting minor indentations. It begins at Cape Sandy, where the main- 
land projects seawards off the convex curve of the east coarst, and is at first inter- 
rupted by broad straits ; but the rocks and shoals soon press closer together, and 
at last merge in a continuous barrier presenting but few openings accessible to 



sliips. The early explorers anxiously skirted the long line of breakers during the 
day, and at dusk veered off to a safe distance from their everlasting roar ; yet 
shipwrecks were of frequent occurrence. Now, however, all the accessible passes 

Fig. 1-58. — The Great Baeeiee Reef. 
Scale 1 : 11,800,000. 

are known, and vessels freely navigate the inner waters under shelter from (he 
fury of the ocean waves. 

Before the introduction of steam navigation, the channels of the Great Barrier, 


notwithstanding their dangerous reefs, presented, with Torres Strait, the only 
route for vessels passing from the Pacific to the Indian Ocean. Here the south- 
east trades set regularlj' throughout nearly the whole year, whereas off the south 
coast of Australia the south and south-west winds blow almost constantly and are 
often stormy. Within the Great Barrier the surf is seldom dangerous, and here 
the ordinary roadsteads, sheltered by a rock or an islet, form jreally safe havens. 
Seafarers navigating these seas are also aided by the clear atmosphere and the 
extreme limpiditj' of the water. At a distance of over a mile the sailor at the 
mast-head readily detects the existence of shallows 30 feet below the surface, 
thanks to the contrast presented by their greenish tints with the deep blue of the 
neighbouring abysses. 

Rivers and Lakes. 

Aiistralia is as inferior to the other continents in the extent and abundance of 
its watercourses as it is in the elevation of its mountain ranges. Of all those 
reaching the coast the Murray or Goolwa, discovered in 182i by Hume and 
Hovell, is the only river draining a large extent of country. This great artery 
receives all the running waters belonging to the inland watersheds of the Gram- 
pians, the Pyrenees of Victoria, the Alps, and the JN^ew South Wales coast ranges. 
From its furthest headstream, the Condamine, rising in Queensland, to its estuary 
in South Aiistralia, the distance is at least 1,200 miles, and the whole extent of 
the catchment basin of the Murray exceeds 400,000 square miles. It is thus 
larger than those of the united Tigris-Euphrates, of the Danube, and the St. 
Lawrence ; but what a difference in its voliune ! — the mean annual discharge being 
only about 12,000 cubic feet per second, or less than that of the Seine. The 
Murray waters are scarcely deep enough for small steamers to ascend its lower 
course even during the floods. During the ten years between 1877 and 1886 the 
Darling was accessible to craft of light draught only for fifty seven months 
altogether, while none of its affluents are navigable except for small boats. 

The fluvial basin itself has been rightly named, not from its longest upper 
branch, but from the headstream "which, thanks to the direction of its course 
parallel with the main axis of the Victoria mountain ranges, receives the largest 
quantity of water. The Murray rises in the Australian Alps on the frontiers of 
Victoria and New South Wales, and during its westerly course is gradually 
increased in volume bj' the torrents descending from the Victoria uplands to its 
left bank. Its northern affluents, the Lachlan-Morrlimbidgee, and especially the 
Darling, have a far longer course, but roll down a much smaller quantity of water. 
Many of the sub-tributaries even lose themselves in meres and swamps before 
reaching the banks of the main stream. All these running waters. expand over 
the surface in shallow temporary lakes, and, being, destitute of regular sandy or 
gravelly beds, scarcely deserve the name of rivers. 

On the east slope of the New Soiith AVales and Queensland coast-ranges the 
streams are relatively more copious, thanks to the heavier rainfall and the closer 


texture of their rocky beds. But between the hills and the coast thev have no 
space to develop long courses, and most of them are lost in the ocean as soon as 
they escape from the mountains. On this slope the largest rivers are the Fitzroy 
and the Burdekin, which, through openings in the coast-ranges, receive some con- 
tributions from the opposite side. 

On the western watershed of Queensland the Gulf of Carpentaria is encircled 
by fluvial basins, such as the Mitchell, Norman, Flinders, Leichhardt, Albert and 
Roper, which usually send down very little water, but whose channels excavated 
to great depths in the rocks bear witness to the great force formerly exercised bv 
their currents. The more arid north-west seaboard has scarcelj' any streams that 
can compare in magnitude even with those of the east coast ranges. Amongst 
the more important in this region are the Victoria, discharging into Queen's 
Channel, the Fitzroy, a little farther west, and quite on the west side of the 
continent the Grey, the Ashburton, Gascoyne, and Murchison, nearly all of which 
watercourses are for the greater part of the year mere chains of half dried-up 

Still more arid is the great southern bight, which for a space of 1,200 miles 
between the south-west corner of the continent and Spencer Gulf, is unbroken by 
a single fluvial estuary. Throughout this vast and almost waterless tract not one 
of the few rivulets developed in the interior has sufficient force to reach the coast. 
Temporary freshets are caused by the heavy downpours in most of the desert 
regions, and on these occasions the sudden appearance of a real current rushing 
along in a usuallj- dried-up. river bed is hailed with a sort of ecstacy by the few 
spectators of the rare phenomenon. Long before the arrival of the stream its 
distant roar is heard as it sweeps down with the shrubs and trees torn from its 
banks; then the noise grows louder, presently a thread of water is seen winding 
through the sinuosities of the ravine, as if in search of an outlet, and this is followed 
with a tremendous crash by the raging torrent which soon fills to overflowing the 
winding valley. 

Amongst the watercourses which run out in the depressions of the interior 
there is one which, at least for the extent of its basin, may be regarded as a true 
river. This is the Barcoo, or Cooper's Creek, which also bears other names in the 
various districts through which it flows, and whose headwaters traverse the Queens- 
land pasturages for a distance of over SoO miles. The upper affluents converge in 
a common channel, which after running south-westwards parallel with the Darling, 
wanders in an uncertain course from swamp to swamp, and at last merges in the 
extensive depression of Lake Eyre together with other watercourses flowing from 
the solitudes of Central Australia. 

The total length of Cooper's Creek cannot be less than 1,200 miles, but it does 
not flow continuously throughout the year, and its course is often indicated only 
by meres and morasses. The lacustrine basins themselves vary in extent and form 
according to the greater or less abundance of the rainfall and intensity of the 
evaporation. At one season they present the aspect of extensive inland seas with 
surf-beaten shores, and stretching beyond the horizon without visible shoals or 


islands ; at anotlier tbey are mere quagmires reflecting the glittering mirage, or 
else argillaceous tracts covered with white saline efflorescences. During protracted 
droiights these so-called lakes may be crossed on horseback, provided the traveller 
avoid the bays and inlets of the periphery, where the treacherous muds and bogs 
are longest maintained by the underground waters filtering through from the 
surrounding lands towards the lateral creeks. 

From the disposition and outlines both of Lake Eyre, and of Lake Torrens, 
which forms its southern continuation in the direction of Spencer Golf, it seems 
probable that these now isolated basins were formerly marine inlets communicating 
freely with the South Pacific. The terminal depression, however, which is certainly 
the lowest cavity on the Australian continent, still stands some 65 or 70 feet above 
the present sea-level. Another depression towards the centre of Australia is occu- 
pied by "Lake" Amadeus, alternately a shallow lagoon, morass, or saline waste. 
In the arid region of West Australia there also occur several depressions of like 
character, which are commonly designated by the name of lakes. 

In the thoroughly esi^lored basins, such as that of the Darling, the fluvial 
discharge is so slight compared with the rainfall that some observers have sought 
for an explanation of the discrepancy in the existence of underground rivers 
flowing beneath the surface clays, and carrying either to the sea or to some 
subterranean reservoirs the greater part of the running waters. Some portion, 
however, of the rainfall, instead of being carried off in river beds, remains on the 
ground in certain shallow basins, which in the Darling pasturages are known by 
the name of " gilgies." On these level tracts, where the rains spread out in stag- 
nant sheets without the force required to excavate a fluvial channel, the onlj^ 
depressions where the water can be collected are the fissures formed in the arid 
soil during the dry season. Under the action of the heavj^ downpours the sides of 
these crevasses are washed away, the bed of the cavities thus formed is levelled, 
and water-holes are gradually developed, which vary in depth from 4 to 5 or 6 
feet, and in size from a few feet to over a hundred yards in circuit. Some of 
these natural gilgies have even been enlarged by the natives, and converted into 
reservoirs capable of containing considerable quantities of water. 


The climate of Australia is written on the surface of the land, its more salient 
features being clearly indicated by those bare rocks, those treeless- plains and 
waterless depressions which occupy the greater part of the continent. Although 
surrounded by marine waters, Australia is of too massive a form to enjoy an insular 
climate, such as that of Europe with its deeply indented seaboard. Owing to the 
diyness of the atmosphere, due to the slight relief and the monotonous contours 
of the coastline, the meteorological conditions are essentially of a continental 

Lying half within the tropical and half in the south temperate zone, this 
region presents, from the York Peninsula to the terminal point of Tasmania, a 



long succession of graduated isothermal lines, with a mean temperature ranging 
from 78° or 80° F. in the extreme north to not more than 54° in the extreme 
south. But this gradual decrease does not correspond uniformly with the change 
of latitude, for the normal averages are often greatly modified, raised in one place, 
lowered in another, by the influence of the prevailing winds, marine currents, and 
mountain ranges. Thus the temperature is diversely affected by the backward 
flow of the equatorial and polar currents, which meet on the coasts of Queensland 
and New South Wales. The contrasts are also always great between the opposite 
slopes of the higher ranges, while iu the deserts of the interior, as in the African 

Scale 1 : 45,000.000. 

Sahara, the extremes of heat and cold present enormous discrepancies, according 
to Sturt as much as from 16° to 122° F. and even more.* 

In Australia the normal wind is the south-east trade, which prevails in the 
lower, while the north-west trade sets regularly in the higher atmospheric 

* Climate of various Australian tOTvns : — 
Somerset, N.E. . 10' 45' S. 
Brisbane, E. . . 27° 28' . 
Sydney, E. . 33' 52' . 

Melbourne, S. . . 37° 49' . 
Adelaide, S. . . 34' 57' . 
Perth, S.W. . . 31" 57' . 

vol,. XIV. 

san temperature. 



. 78° F. 



. 69' 8' . 


. 37° 

. 92° . 


. 35° 

. 99' . 


. 27' 

. 94' . 


. 34° 

. 88' 


. 32° 

86 inches. 








regions. Nevertheless, the regular direction of these currents is considerably 
modified by the great centre of attraction formed by the arid solitudes of the 
interior. The trades being deflected towards the coast are changed to easterly and 

even north-easterly winds. 
Fig. 100.— Rainfall of East Australia. while marine breezes set 

scnie 1:30,000,000. j^l^^jj^ ^^ j-o^^d the Sea- 

board. In the north-west 
the winds blowing from 
Indonesia in the winter 
are simply the north-east 
trades, which, coming from 
the northern hemisphere, 
change their direction with 
the change of zone. 

Between these two zones 
of the south-east and north- 
west monsoons the neutral 
region, shifting with the 
seasons from east to west 
and north to south, cor- 
responds in a general way 
with the York Peninsula. 
But in the south of Australia 
the prevailing westerly 
gales, which are often ver^^ 
strong and even tempes- 
tuous, find an unobstructed 
course from the Indian to 
the Pacific Ocean, and are 
consequently seldom de- 
flected from the normal 
direction. On the mainland 
itself the changes of the 
dominant currents, espe- 
cially in summer, are usually 
accompanied by sudden 
squalls known bj' the name 
6ooMii£3. of "bursters." The baro- 
meter falls rapidly, clouds 
of dust are stirred up), the storm gathers, peals of thunder echo from the welkin, 
and the rain comes down in torrents. In Melbourne these sudden gales from 
the interior are called " bricklaj'ers," from the destructive whirlwinds of dust 
accompanying them. In (he cultivated districts of the Australian coastlands no 
summer passes without several visitations of hot winds analogous in their effects to 


the African scirocco.. Under their action the temperature rises suddenly, both 
men and animals feel a sense of exhaustion, the vegetation droops, and if the wind 
lasts long enough the foliage becomes blighted and withers as if frost-bitten. 

The rainfall diminishes rapidly from the coast towards the interior of the 
continent, and the quantity received by the inner slopes of the coast-ranges is 
scarcely' more than one-half that of the slopes facing seawards. Thus the forty 
inches received by Sydney is reduced to less than sixteen on the western plains of 
New South ^Yales, and the supply of moisture is certainly much less in the cential 
regions, where the winds arrive deprived of nearly all their vapours. At the 
station of Charlotte "Waters, in the heart of the continent (26^ 29' south latitude), 
the mean annual discharge is only five inches, and at times a whole year passes 
without a single shower. Hence the greater part of Australia is too arid for 
European settlements, or for the development of agricultural enterprise. Never- 
theless, the colonists have had the immense advantage of finding a perfectly healthy 
climate in all the districts where they have built their towns or established cattle 
farms. Salubrity^ remains in the eyes of the immigrants from Great Britain the 
special privilege of Australia, and is regarded by them as a compensation for many 
material disadvantages. Notwithstanding the changes required by a new social 
life, the Anglo-Saxon suffers no inconvenience by migrating to the Austral hemi- 
sphere, and the average period of existence is even said to be higher in his new 
home at the antipodes. That people advanced in years here enjoy " a new lease of 
life" has become a local saying in most of the settled districts. 

Flora of Aistrai.ia. 

The Australian flora presents a highly original character. Few other vegetable 
zones are so well defined, offering as it does a most astonishing contrast even to 
that of New Giiinea, from which it is separated only by narrow and shallow waters. 
This originality must be explained by the long ages that have elapsed since the 
separation of the southern continent. But it still seems surprising that a region 
physically so monotonous compared with Europe, and moreover of smaller extent, 
should jjossess so many more botanical forms. These are estimated altogether at 
about 12,2-")0, of which number as many as 7,550 are quite peculiar to Australia. 
The only vegetable zones which present a comparatively richer or more varied 
flora are the southern extremity of Africa and the island of New Caledonia. 
There must be some coinmon cause for the extraordinary concentration of distinct 
species in these three regions of the southern hemisphere, where the floral world 
appears to have increased in variety according as the lands themfelves diminished 
in superficial area. Nor is it the tropical, but, on the contrary, the temperate part 
of all three zones that presents the greatest proportion of vegetable foi'nis ; and 
these forms are again more numerous in the arid western section than in the 
romantic eastern division of the Australian Continent. Hence the submeigcnce of 
the land must have been greater on the side facing the Indian than on tliat turned 
towards the Pacific Ocean. 

B B 2 


The splendour and exuberance, if not the variety, of vegetable growths depends 
above all on the abundance of the rainfall. Thus the lovely family of palms, 
which might be supposed restricted to the trojjical part of Australia, seems almost 
independent of latitude, here following the seaboard far to the south of the torrid 
zone. No members of this group occur on the arid west side of the continent. A 
narrow belt of palms is seen only along the northern and eastern shores as far 
south as New South Wales, where the slopes of the hills beyond Sydney in 35° 
S. latitude are still shaded by the Ikistona, which here grows to a height of over 
80 feet. In its palm flora, as in so many other respects, Australia resembles South 

The pandanus penetrates southwards no farther than Moreton Bay, on the 
Queensland coast, and in general the Australian trojjical is less original than the 
temperate flora. Numerous Indian and Malayan species give it in many places an 
Indonesian aspect ; but there also occur in the tropical zone a few forms of quite a 
special character, which, however, occupy a very narrow area. Such are, near 
Hanover Bay on the north-west coast, those remarkable capjiariv, which grow to a 
considerable height, and whose branches, laden with fruits as large as cocoanuts, 
bend gracefully over in the form of a vast canopy. The stem is always inflated, 
bulging out like a pumpkin and giving a sickly appearance to the plant. Its fruit, 
however, is excellent, and the white gum obtained by incision of the bark resembles 
macaroni both in flavour and colour. 

Amongst plants restricted to a narrow range botanists have also discovered on 
the New South Wales uplands some forms belonging to the north European 
regions. Of these Hooker enumerates 38, including varieties of the ranunculus, 
gentian, and myosotis. Since the arrival of the whites the vegetation has been 
greatly modified, and some northern forms have not only invaded Australia, but 
have spread thence to New Caledonia and other South-Sea Islands. According to 
Hooker there are at present over 200 perfectly acclimatised European plants in the 
Sydney district, where they grow freely without the aid of artificial cultivation. 

Amongst the 950 species of trees which attain a height of at least 30 feet the 
most common are those with small slender leaves, throwing off but slight evapora- 
tion and affording little shade. The genus acacia is represented by no less than 
320 species, some almost destitute of true foliage, but overladen in spring-time 
with fragrant blossom. The casuarina also lacks a fully developed foliage, but is 
covered with little rigid branchlets, and often presents a black, withered appear- 
ance. This family is very numerous, as is also that of the so-called grass-tree 
{xantliorrlicea), which is characterised by a large tuft of wiry, grass-like foliage 
shooting up from the stem, with a spike like a bulrush in the centre, which is 
covered in summer with a mass of white blossom. 

In Queensland is met another curious forest plant, the bottle-tree, so named 
from its shape. But the Australian tree in a pre-eminent sense is the eucalyptus, 
or gum-tree, of which there are about a hundred different species. Amongst these 
is the famous eucalyptus globulus, to which have been attributed so many curative 
properties, and which is said to exceed all other trees in mean height, with 


perhaps tlie single exception of the iceUingtonia of California and Oregon. But this 
prerogative is by others assigned to the Rcgnans variety of eucalyptus amygdalina, 
which attains its greatest size on the mountain slopes of eastern Victoria, where 
trunks have been measured no less than 480 feet long.* Gums 420 feet high are 
by no means rare in the gorges of Victoria and Tasmania ; but farther north 
scarcely any are met exceeding 200 feet. Those growing on the Tasmanian 
uplands shoot straight up like bamboos, without any branches below a height of 
50 or 60 feet. When the wind whistles through the ravines, the strips of bark 
hanging from these tall stems clash together with a weird, creaking sound as of 
moaning spirits. Growing only on the slopes of the hills, the giant gum-trees are 
not seen to full advantage from a distance. 

In Australia there are scarcely any dense forests with a tangled growth of 
interwoven branches and creepers, as in most tropical regions ; nor are there many 
woodlands with close-set stems, as in the pine and fir plantations of north Europe. 
As a rule, the trees lie wide apart, like those of the English parks, and beneath 
their shade stretches the grassy sward, where formerly grazed herds of kangaroos, 
now mostly replaced by flocks of sheep. Till recently these open wooded tracts 
covered the greater part of the western slope of the New South "Wales and Queens- 
land uplands ; but farther west, towards the centre of the continent, they give place 
to scrub, usually consisting of thorny plants, such as acacias, dwarf eucalj'ptus or 
spinifex {triodia irritans), growing together in thickets. North of the 28° south 
latitude, where this scrub prevails, men and animals often find it impossible to 
make way, and many travellers, unable to force a path through the spinifex, have 
been fain to change their route or retrace their steps. 

The dense growths of eucalyptus cUimosa, the mallie of the natives, are also a 
great obstacle to explorers, though they may still be traversed. They have the 
appearance of tall bulrushes, growing to a height of 10 or 12 feet before throwing off 
any branches, and completely covering the ground with a uniform sea of verdure, 
in which the wayfarer disappears, while laboriously striving to force a passage. 
The cuttings made for highways across these mallie thickets are as sharp and 
clearly defined as those of roads flunked by walls. Of the scrubby tracts the most 
easily penetrated are those composed of melakuca, a shrub which resembles the 
myrtle, and which grows in clusters with free intervening spaces. The natives of 
the desert regions are acquainted with a plant, the pitchouri {duboisia liopu-oodii), 
whose leaves reduced to powder sustain them on long journeys, and keep oil the 
pangs of hunger. When fighting they continually chew these leaves, which 
appear to have the effect of exciting their warlike spirit to a pitch of frenzy. 

A beginning has long been made in the process of disafforesting Australia. 
About the year 1860 some stockbreeders entertained the idea of extending their 
grazing grounds by clearing away the forest growths that clothed the slopes of the 
hiUs. The process of felling the eucalyptus and other large trees would have been 
too slow and two expensive ; hence the squatters had recourse to the more expe- 
ditious plan of barking the stems. This practice spread rapidly, and by 1880 at 

• George Sutherland, amongst others, declares this to be " imdoubtedly the largest tree in the world." 


least three-fourths of the forests iu the basin of the Hunter had already disap- 
peared. The time seems approaching when scarcely a single tree will be left in 
the boundless pastures of the interior. This ruthless destruction of the woodlands 
has had the effect of transforming the most charming landscapes into dreary 
monotonous wastes. But strange to say, the clearing of the forest tracts has not 
been followed by any decrease in the annual rainfall, while such a luxuriant 
herbage has been developed, that in some places a thousand sheep find an abun- 
dance of food where scarcely a hundred could formerly be kept. The eucalyptus 
and other trees, whose roots ramified far and wide in search of moisture, left little 
for the o-rasses, which sprang uj) in the rainy season and perished on the return of 
the drouo-hts. Now, however, the pastures receive the full benefit of the whole 
supply, which sufficiently explains their improved condition. 

Fauna of Australia. 

Like the flora, the Australian fauna presents a strikingly individual physiog- 
nomy, attesting the long succession of ages during which this southern continent 
has been sej)arated from the Asiatic mainland. Of its 160 species of mammals 
scarcely any correspond with those of the northern regions, except some rats, 
mice, and the dingo, a half-wild dog, which probably accompanied the first human 
immigrants, and the remains of which are found amongst the bones occurring in 
former cave-dwellings. There is no elephant, no rhinoceros, no monkey, nor a 
single member of the feline group. The characteristic species are, in fact, mainly 
marsupials, which scarcely occur in any other region of the globe, except in 
America, where several varieties of the opossum family occupy a wide range. 
The fossils discovered in the Australian quaternary deposits show that at some 
remote period the continental fauna resembled that still surviving, but was repre- 
sented by animals of far larger dimensions. The diprotodon, a sj)ecies allied to 
that of the kangaroos, Avas nearly as large as the elephant, and others rivalled the 
rhinoceros in size ; one variety of carnivorous phalanger was as formidable as a 
lion, and birds of the emu family surpassed the largest ostriches in proportions. 

Of all Australian mammals the kangaroos and kindred forms are by far the 
most numerous. There occur some fifty distinct species of these marsupials, one 
of which, the great red kangaroo, is over 5 feet high and weighs as much as 225 
lbs., while others are no bigger than a hare or even a rat. The other chief repre- 
sentative animals of the Australian fauna are the pcrameUdce, locally known as 
" rabbits," which have the marsupial pouch like the kangaroo, but which run on 
all fours like other quadrupeds, and not by a series of hops on the hind legs ; the 
phalangcrs, which live in trees and feed on leaves ; the phmcolomijs, or wombat, 
which burrows in the ground and feeds on roots ; the carnivorous dosyurida', with 
bear-like tail, which prey on mice, birds, and even small live-stock ; lastly, the 
anomalous oniitliorhynchus, or duck-bill, a monotreme oviparous mammal allied to 
the marsupials. 

The Australian avifauna is very rich, comprising 630 species, or 130 more than 


the European, but, viewed as a whole, it presents less marked features than the 
order of mammals. Doubtless Australia has its emus, its casowaries, and various 
species of mcijalojjodius, which does not hatch its eggs, merely covering them with 
brushwood; but most of the birds found on this continent belong also to the 
Indonesian and Asiatic zones, thanks to the faculty of flight by which they cross 
the intervening marine spaces. Birds of graceful form and gorgeous plumage 
are scarcely less numerous than in New Guinea and the Moluccas ; those whose 
food is nectar and honey are relatively the best represented, for Australia 
abounds in flowering trees and shrubs. Nevertheless, whole groups, such as 
the families of vultures, the pheasants and magpies, are absent from this region 
of the globe. 

The crocodile is found only on the seaboard facing the Malay Archipelago, but 
the venomous species of snakes are very numerous. Other zoological orders, such 
as fishes, insects, molluscs, also present special types with a great diversity of 
forms, but already much modified in their general distribution since the introduc- 
tion of corresponding European species. Even the forests and thickets, formerly 
seldom enKvened bj- the songsters' notes, now constantly echo with the music of 
the new arrivals from the mother countiy. Indigenous plants and animals alike 
have been thrust into the background by the intruding species, just as the Austra- 
lian himself retires before the strangers of white stock. Not only have the 
English brought with them all the European domestic animals, but since 1846 
they have even imported the Asiatic camels with their Afghan and Baluchi 
drivers. Thanks to these human and animal immigrants, accustomed to cross vast 
desert wastes, expeditions have been successfully undertaken, which but for them 
would have been impossible. 

Inhabitants of Acstualia. 

The aboijiginal population before the establishment of the first British settle- 
ments has been conjecturally estimated at from one hundred and fifty thousand to 
two hundred thousand. But even were it three or four times more numerous 
Australia would none the less have to be considered as at that time almost unin- 
habited, regard being had to its vast extent. All the tribal groups thinly scattered 
over this boundless region everywhere presented great resemblance in type and 
speech ; hence most anthropologists agree in looking on the natives as belonging 
to a common stock, constituting a well-marked independent branch of the human 
family. Nevertheless, it seems probable that before the Eurojican immigration 
peoples of diverse origin, either driven before the storm or following long familiar 
marine routes, had reached the Australian mainland and intermingled with the 
primitive populations. During his exploring expeditions across the north-western 
regions George Grey noticed in all the tribes the presence of individuals with 
relatively light complexion, who seemed to w'ield a certain authority over their 
fellow tribesmen. According to Grey these warriors represented an element of 
Indonesian origin, and even their dogs, quite different from the Australian dingo, 


resembled the Malay species found in Timor.* On the otlier hand there exist 
in the islands of Torres Strait peoples with abundant frizzly hair, who belong 
probably to the same stock as the Papuans. Maer (Murray Island) is inhabited 
by a dark race differing in no respects from the New Caledonians. 

But whatever be the origin of these contrasts amongst the natives, whether 
due to difference of race or to diversity of environment and social life, the ordinary 
type of the Australians not yet debased by a degraded existence amongst the 
colonists is much finer than is usually supposed. Those especially who occupy 
more favoured domains along the fertile river- banks are distinguished by fine 
figures and a well-developed muscular system, with low but broad forehead, rather 
flat nose, large mouth, massive jaws, brown animated eyes sheltered by very promi- 
nent superciliary arches. The natives are generally free from physical defects, 
and amongst those of West Australia Bishop Rudesindo Salvado noticed only four 
blind, but not one either deaf, dumb, or insane. 

Although of dark or blackish complexion, like the Sudanese Africans, unlike 
them the Australians have no woolly or frizzly hair, being in this respect distin- 
guished from all other dark races. The beard, also, is much more developed than 
that of the Negroes proper, while the lijas are never everted so as to show the red 
inner skin. Their weak point are the lower extremities — spindle legs, flat calves, 
flat but very small feet. On the whole, they doubtless yield to the Europeans in 
physical strength, though not in endurance and power of sujoporting pain, but they 
are by no means the beings of grotesque and repulsive appearance as described by 
travellers who saw them only in the wretched hovels on the outskirts of large 
towns, or as depicted by the sjDortsmen who hunted them down like so much game. 
To believe some accounts, they are little better than animals, intermediate 
between man and the higher apes, and even more allied to the latter than the 

On the other hand these vilified aborigines have found enthusiastic champions 
amongst the dominant race. Mitchell, who had taken the black Yuranigh as his 
guide across the ti'opical regions, expressly declares that the Australians of his 
escort were " superior in penetration and judgment " to his white assistants, 
although he had no occasion to complain of the latter. Yuranigh he calls his com- 
panion, his counsellor and friend, and from the physical point of view regards his 
superiority as self-evident. As a mere specimen of natural history, what civilised 
animal, he asks, could have compared with this native for the beauty of his teeth, 
his powerful digestion, the perfection of his organs of sight, hearing, smell, taste, 
and touch, his staying powers in walking, running, and climbing trees, his healthy 
constitution, and the intensity of his animal existence ? t 

As a rule the superior tribes have a coppery rather than a black complexion, 
while nearly all the skulls are of the dolichocejjhalous or long type. The aborigines 
appear to be most degraded physically in the arid central region, where man, 
exhausted and stunted by hunger and thirst, passes his days in grubbing the 

* JciuriHil of Two Expeditions of Biscovery in North-Western and Western Australia. 
t Tropical Australia. 


earth in quest of a few roots and of a little muddy water. Tribes are even said 
to exist which, together with their dogs, have adapted themselves to the use of 

The finest natives wei'e those of the east coast, where a more beneficent nature 
supplied food and water in abundance, including, however, certain articles of diet 
calculated to excite the astonishment and loathing of Europeans. Thus Von 
Lendenfeld tells us that Mount Bogong takes its name from the grubs which the 
aborigines here collected in myriads for their daily meals. 

Although numbering but a few thousand souls, the Australian race is divided 
into hundreds of tribal groups. In certain districts there are as many languages 
as communities or scattered family circles. In others, again, the native idioms 
present great uniformity throughout considerable tracts of country. Thus from 
the banks of the Hawkesbury to Moreton Bay, a distance of aboiit 350 miles, the 
natives have little difficulty in conversing together ; so, also, those of the 
south-west coast, between Hamalin Bay and King George Sound, speak closely 
related dialects. Another extensive linguistic zone comprises the whole region 
between Cooper's Creek and the Middle Darling, a space of over 40,000 square 
miles, and this surprising uniformity of speech is attributed to the extreme dryness 
of the land, which obliges the tribes to gather round the watering-places in sum- 
mer, suspending all hostilities, and for the time being merging, as it were, in a 
common nationality. 

On the other hand, the tribes of the Lower Darling, where there is never any 
lack of water or vegetation, have been able to keep aloof for long ages, and their 
languages have consequentl}' become greatly diversified. The fact is evident from 
the very names of the different peoples in this region, all of which have exactly 
the same meaning, though often differing altogether in form. Such are the Baraba- 
Barabas, the Wati-Watis, the Waiki-Waikis, the Lichi-Lichis, the Darti-Dartis, 
the Yari-Yaris — terms meaning "No-No," just as by an analogous mental process 
mediaeval France was divided into the Langue d'Oui and the Langue d'Oc. The 
rapid divergence of the local dialects is also partly due to the respect paid to the 
dead requiring the survivors to taboo for a time, and even for ever, a large num- 
ber of words which bore or seemed to bear a certain relation to the deceased either 
in sound or sense. 

But, however they may differ from each other outwardly, all the native idioms 
present some common points of resemblance. They are polys3-llabic and aggluti- 
nating by means of harmonious suffixes abounding in vowels. Aspirates are 
slightly developed, the sibilants are completely absent, and the accent falls usually 
on the penultimate syllable. Onomatopoeic terms are very common, and all objects 
perceived by the senses are indicated by numerous synonyms, or at least by what 
pass as such amongst strangers interrogating the natives. But on the other hand, 
these primitive tongues are extremel}^ poor in abstract expressions, as well as in the 
names of numerals. Scarcely any appear to have distinct terms for more than 
one or fico, while probably none of the tribes can count beyond five. 

In the absence of accurate knowledge attempts have been made to classify the 


Australian languages on the ground of a few common points of resemblance, but 
these attempts have not proved very successful, often yielding the most contradic- 
tory results. In any case the Tasmanian idioms, of which a few vocabularies are 
extant, are regarded as forming an independent group. The islanders themselves 
were evidently of a different stock, and much more closely allied to the Melanesians 
than to their Australian neighbours. 

To the great physical differences of the aborigines correspond moral traits of 
a no less divergent order. Hence the varying and even contradictory reports of 
observers, some of whom vaunt their native pride, courage, and respect for their 
pledged word, while others describe them as cowards, Hars, and traitors. One of 
the most common charges urged against them is their cruel and oppressive treat- 
ment of the women, and in most communities this accusation is only too well 

Instances are not lacking of women who have acquired a certain moral ascen- 
dancy in the tribe, but as a rule they fare little better than slaves. Not only are 
they forbidden to eat in the presence of men, but many kinds of food are denied 
them, while they are required to show in speech and attitude a sort of adoration 
towards their masters, the least inattention being visited with the severest castiga- 
tion. The husband may kill and even burn his wife, her friends and relations 
being powerless to interfere on her behalf. He may throw her body to his dogs, 
because the wife is his property, which he has the right to use or abuse at his 
pleasure. Nevertheless, traces still survive in Australia of a primitive matriarchal 
system, and even now name, kinship, rank, and fortune are for the most part 
transmitted through the female line. 

Polygamy prevails amongst the native populations, and in the north-western 
districts cases occur of powerful tribesmen acquiring as many as ten wives. In 
some communities exogamy is strictly observed, all marriages contracted with 
women of the same class being regarded as incestuous, yet amongst others unions 
between near relatives are held in honour. In one place marriages are effected by 
a real or simulated abduction, in another the only formality is the payment of the 
contract price. 

This purchase of the women by the strong and wealthy members of the com- 
munity has the effect of condemning the poor and the young men to a state of 
celibacy, or obliging them to put up with the divorced wives of their elders. The 
dearth of wives amongst most Australian populations is all the greater that the 
women are far less numerous than the men ; not, however, because female births 
are rarer, as has been asserted, but because during their short existence the 
women are exposed to many more dangers, such as premature confinement, exces- 
sive hardships, bad treatment, night attacks, and the like. Amongst many tribes 
infanticide is common, and as a rule it is the girls who are removed either by being 
buried uHve or knocked on the head immediately after birth. 

Children who survive the perils of infancy are treated with much kindness ; 
they are never beaten and grow up freely to man's estate, following their elders to 
the chase and war.- Nevertheless they have to undergo the severe trials of the 


bora before being admitted as equals into the society of the men. In a large 
number of tribes two incisors of the upper jaw are broken or extracted. Most of 
the youths are subjected to circumcision, or else to various kinds of extremely 
painful mutilations. They are also required to run down a kangaroo in the chase, 
to remain alone in the forest without food for several days at the risk of their 
lives, to endure horrid tortures without wincing, and so on. Amongst the Kurnai 
of South Australia these probations end in a magnetic sleep, after which the yoiiths 
wake up "men." Then at last the}' are entitled to wear the girdle, bracelets, the fron- 
tal band, and other ornaments, indicating that they have re;iched the virile state. 

These initiatory ceremonies are usually concluded with a corrohori, or tribal 
gathering, held during the full moon, combining the administration of justice, par- 
liaments, solemn treaties of alliance, and concluding with theatrical representations, 
midnight dances, feasts, and orgies. Once initiated, the youths may take part in 
the songs, dances, and oratorical displays. As members of the clan they are 
branded on the breast or thigh with the kohong, that is, the national embltm, some 
plant or animal, like the totem of the North American Redskins. But these 
emblems are at times insignificant enough, a simple ant or spider, or other 
small insect. The person so marked must henceforth show his respect for the 
talisman that symbolises the family group, holding himself as the inseparable 
companion or kinsman of all bearing the same totem, as well as of all natural 
objects associated with his particular kobong. Thus during the funeral rites care 
must be taken that the body be buried under a tree regarded as belonging to the 
same clan. 

Tattooing is often limited to the figure of the kobong, but in some tribes the 
body is covered with symmetrical scarifications of a rude design, incised by means 
of shai'p shells. On the north-east coast the natives also follow the Papuan custom 
of piercing the cartilage of the nose and introducing a bit of stick or a kangaroo 
bone, which imj)edes the respiration and obliges those so adorned to keep the 
mouth open. According to the various occasions of war, feasts, or mourning they 
paint the face and body in red, yellow, white, or black colours. White is an indica- 
tion of grief, while red is the sacred colour reserved for the great events of the 
tribal life. 

Before the arrival of the Europeans the natives of the tropical regions went 
naked, or restricted their attire to a few rags or waist-bands of fibre, while in the 
colder southern districts the women wore a smock or tunic of kangaroo skin. The 
northern tribes still paint the face and body in various colours, and near Port 
Darwin the white streaks traced on the black ground of the face give from a 
distance the effect of a death's head. But the form and pattern of dress and orna- 
ment, as well as of the dwellings, vary endlessly. In one place the only shelter 
are the natural caves and rocks, in another a screen of foliage, hovels, and even 
rude stone structures. The weapons also differ greatly, though the most prevalent 
are spears, clubs, and darts with fish-bone or flint heads. In certain districts the 
aborigines still make use of unpolished stone hatchets, but the bow and arrow aro 
unknown, except along a small strip of the east coast. 



The most characteristic weapon is the boomerang, a short curved stick which 
whirls with a corkscrew motion in the direction of the object aimed at, and after 
striking returns to the thrower. The inventive genius which devised this remark- 
able implement has also enabled the natives to invent other ingenious contrivances 
for the hunt, fishing, and navigation. Yet it is noteworthy that the neighbouring 
Tasmanians were ignorant both of the throwing-stick and of the boomerang, and 
even of boats or canoes, although living in an island fringed with clusters of islets. 
The populations of Torres Strait and of the Arafura Sea, amongst whom the 

Fig. 161. — Inhabitants and Langdages op Austealia about 1850. 
Sciile 1 : 40,000,000. 

Lasb oFb^eenwich 

_ 600 Miles. 

The dots indicate the regions where the boomerang was unknown ; the lines mark the range of certain linguistic grnnps- 

Papuan elements seem in some places to prevail, were also ignorant of the boome- 
rang, the form of which curious weapon varies greatly in the different tribes. 

Not only is the tribal territory perfectly defined, but within this collective 
domain each individual often owns a plot, his right to which is never questioned. 
No one can cross the boundary without his express permission, the stranger pre- 
senting himself without arms, and holding green branches in his hand. The 
aborigines, however, are the most backward of agricultural peoples, the yam being 
the only plant cultivated by them, just as the dingo is the only animal they have 


succeeded in domesticating. Nevertheless, industrj- has been so far developed among 
certain tribes that they appreciate the advantage of taking foreign articles in 
exchange for skins, nets of vegetable fibre, spear-heads, diverse pigments, and 
other native produce. This intertribal commerce is carried on through the so-called 
ngalla icatos, who are solemnly elected to the office, and who act as mediators 
between their own and other tribes whose languages they speak. Thanks to cer- 
tain pass-words, signs, and " writing sticks," they are able to present themselves 
everywhere with confidence, their person being sacred even in time of war. 

The remarkable development of certain Australian tribes is shown especially by 
their knowledge of the starry firmament. They give to the different constella- 
tions the names of legendary heroes, and are able exactly to describe their position 
according to the eight points dividing the sphere. The path of moon and stars 
enables them to determine the hours with great accuracy, although the poverty of 
their idioms in names of the numerals jDrevents them from having am' exact sense of 
measure, and from combining the primitive elements with sufficient skill to develop 
a rudimentary geometry. They acquire languages with remarkable facility, and 
in the mixed schools where the native children are seated by the side of the whites, 
the latter are not always at the head of the class 

Their linguistic facvdty is probably due to the extreme delicacy of their sense 
of hearing. Thej' have no musical instruments except rude drums of kangaroo 
skin, and in some of the southern tribes a kind of flute on which they pla}' with 
the nose. But singing is much practised in joy or grief, during the fury of battle, 
or even to allay the pangs of hunger. Events interesting to the community are 
also commemorated in song. Like the South African bushmen, to whom they 
have often been compared, they are fond of figuring human faces and animal 
forms on their skin garments, on the bark of trees and the face of the rock. The 
paintings seen by Grey on the banks of the Glenelg in the north-west were in 
diverse colours, black, red, yellow, white, blue, coated over with a gum which 
while enhancing the brightness of the tints protected them from the weather. 
Certain figures reproduced by Grey recall those of Byzantine saints surrounded 
with their luminous nimbus. This traveller also noticed a head in relief remark- 
ably well sculptured on a sandstone rock. 

In the central parts of the continent the most conspicuous objects are images 
of snakes done in charcoal or painted with ochre. Grey also mentions certain 
designs traced on a person clothed in a long red robe, which so closely resembled 
written characters that it was impossible not to associate the representation with 
the idea of an inscription. It would seem natural to attribute such designs to 
some casual visitors from the neighbouring Eastern Archipelago, but for the fact 
that the less rudely executed figures were precisely those which were discovered 
farthest from the coast. Figures, however, have also been found carved on the 
surface of the rocks far to the east both in Queensland and New South Wales. 

Funeral rites vary to a surprising degree from tribe to tribe. In one district 
the dead are burnt, in another they are buried or else exposed on rocks or the 
branches of trees. In South Australia, they are interred with the head turned 


towards the rising sun, and a fire is then kindled near the grave to scare away the 
evil spirits. In the York Peninsula they are placed on the headlands, and a 
terrace on a rocky islet at the very extremity of Cape York is covered with an 
enormous pile of skulls enclosed b}^ a fence of stones and surmounted by a stout 
bamboo cane. No more solemn site or more in harmony with a deep poetic senti- 
ment could have been chosen for the necropolis of the community. 

Amongst numerous tribes, especially in the northern regions, the mother cuts 
off a finger at the death of each child. Elsewhere the obsequies are accompanied 
b}' cannibal scenes. When a man dies young or through old age his nearest and 
dearest consider themselves bound to eat him in proof of their affection. In South 
Australia, also, the child dying of any illness is devoured, the mother taking the 
head in the hope of thus restoring the lost one to life ; but in other tribes she is 
condemned to keep with her the dead body of her child for months together. A 
common practice is also that of consuming the enemy killed in battle, the motive 
being to acquire their strength and valour, and to prevent their shades from 
avenging their death. But in order to achieve this object all that is needed in 
certain districts is to eat the kidney fat, which is regai-ded as the seat of the soul. 
Elsewhere the same purpose is secured merely by consuming th.e eyes, in which 
shone the rage of battle. 

The Australians believe in charms, incantations, and miracles. 'No malady but 
has been caused by some hostile magician ; no cure but has been effected by a 
beneficent wizard. The universe is full of spirits and genii, some wandering 
about in pain and seeking to reoccupy some new body, others animating the trees 
and rocks, heaven itself, the storm, clouds, and stars. But the natives do not 
appear to have idols properlj' so called, though all their surroundings are objects 
of worship ; in everything they see some formidable or benevolent being, who 
must be invoked to appease his wrath or secure his aid. The moon-god especially 
seems to be a potent deity, more powerful than the sun- goddess; for he is born 
again each month to beget the stars, trees, animals, and men. Thanks to the 
action of the Christian missionaries the various national myths have gradually 
assumed a certain biblical aspect, so that some writers have discovered a distant 
resemblance between them and the Mosaic records. 

Few Australian tribes show even the rudiments of a state in (heir political 
organisation. Amongst these mention is made of the Narrinyery people of Murray 
River, who, according to Taplin, have elective " kings " assisted by a council of 
ciders ; Init such constitutions are rare, and their existence is absolutely denied by 
Curr. In any case each head of a family has almost complete control over the 
destinies of his domestic group. Doubtless the hah/ns, or sorcerers, exercise great 
influence, and this influence combined with that of age at times secures them real 
political j)ower. But these are all exceptional cases, and it seems safe to assert 
that there is at all events no transmission of authority from father to son or through 
the female line in any Australian community. 

The universal rule is equality of rights for each family as well as for each 
tribe. In time of peace all were held to be of equal worth ; but in the course of 


ages particular groups had devoted themselves to some special industry which 
rendered them necessary to the others. One found within its territory an excellent 
material for the manufacture of stone hatchets, and thus acquired perfection in that 
art ; another su])plied the best boomerangs, or the finest kangaroo skins, and so on. 

But throughout nearly the whole of the Australian world the history of the 
aborigines is already a thing of the past. The race itself is steadily decreasing 
and dying out. Even the few that still survive are being rapidly transformed by 
crossings and the adoption of a settled existence. In many districts more than 
half of the population has been swept away by the diseases introduced with the 
Europeans, and especially by small-pox, the invasion of which coincided with the 
landing of the first convicts at Botany Bay. Besides small-pox, whose ravages were 
continued down to the year 1840, there are other influences at work, some even 
within the tribes themselves. Such are the monopoly of the women by the old 
and rich, infanticide and abortion ; but most of all is the irresistible advance of the 
European settlers, driving to the background the primitive populations which at 
first regarded these " white men" as their kinsmen returning from the world of 
spirits. Thrust back towards the wilderness the natives find themselves deprived 
of their rich hunting-grounds, and many, conscious of the doom pending over 
them, give up the struggle for existence, and even refuse to perpetuate their race. 
How could it be otherwise when certain colonial magistrates declare all those to be 
marauders and poachers who persist in remaining on the territory of their fore- 
fathers ? 

The very appearance of European cattle is already the dcath-knell of the 
aborigines, for this is followed by the extermination or disappearance of the 
kangaroo, and the native hunters finding no more game are obliged also to retire 
or perish of hunger. In sixteen months as many as 220,000 kangaroos were 
killed in the single Queensland district of Warwick. But a war of extermination 
is waged not only against the native game, but also against the natives themselves. 
On the borders of many estates, notably in Queensland, which stretches to the 
confines of the desert, the sheep farms are guarded by mounted police — Australians, 
Melanesians, or Kafirs — who are instructed to fire on the independent blacks and 
thus relieve the peaceful squatters from "these troublesome loafers." 

The island of Tasmania has already been completely " cleared " by the 
S3'stematic destruction of its primitive inhabitants, who wore estimated at about 
seven thousand on the arrival of the whites, and who were said to be of a remark- 
ably gentle and kindly disposition. On December 28th, 1834, the last survivors, 
hounded down like wild beasts, were captured at the extremity of a headland, and 
this event was celebrated as a signal triumph. The successful hunter, Robinson, 
received a Government reward of 600 acres and a considerable sum of money, 
besides a public subscription of about £8,000. 

The captives were at first convej'ed from islet to islet, and then confined to the 
number of two hundred in a marshy valley of Flinders Island, washed by the 
stormy waters of Bass Strait. They were supplied with provisions and some 
lessons in the catechism ; their community was even quoted as an example of the 



progress of Christian civilisation. But after ten years of residence in this place of 
exile more than three-fourths of the natives had perished. Then pity was taken on 
them, and the twelve surviving men, twenty-two women, and ten children, nearly 
all half-breeds, were removed to a narrow promontory at Oyster Cove, near Hobart, 
and placed under some keepers, who enriched themselves at their expense. 

In 1860 the Tasmanian race was reduced to sixteen souls ; in 1869 the last 
man perished, and in 1876 " Queen " Truganina, popularly known as Lalla Rookh, 
followed her people to the grave. But there still survived a few half-castes, and 

Fig. 162. — Lalla Rookh, the Last Tasmanian. 

in 1884 a so-called " Tasmanian " woman obtained a grant of land fi'om the 
colonial parliament. 

On the Australian mainland, also, most of the coast tribes have disappeared. 
Of the one thousand five himdred natives occupying the Botany Bay district in 
1788 not a single descendant can be found, and in the settled districts where a 
few of the aborigines still linger, all tribal grouping has been effaced. At the 
census of 1881 the total number in the colonised territory was estimated at some 
thirty thousand. Since then there has been an apparent increase in some of the 
colonies, which is explained by the fact that the frontiers have been enlarged so 
as to include a few hundred tribes till recently independent, and consequently not 
included in the earlier returns. Nevertheless, some recent statistics seem to show 


that there has been a real increase either of the pure or the mixed aboriginal 
elements in certain " reserves," where the natives are treated with kindness. In 
the arid regions of the interior beyond the districts settled by the whites the 
aborigines are probably even leas numerous than in the vicinity of the seaboard. 
The mixture of white and native blood produces an intermediate race of fair 
proportions and comely appearance. 

At present the colonists of European birth and descent have become absolute 
masters of the continent, where they are. already at least fifty times more numerous 
than the aborigines. But their beginnings were lowly enough, and whereas the 
inhabitants of other countries delight in celebrating the heroic virtues of their 
forefathers and predecessors, the present citizens of the Australian states prefer to 
trace their descent, not from the first arrivals, but from later immigrants. Those 
first arrivals were in fact convicts, who, to the number of seven hundred and eighty- 
seven, were transported in 1778 to Botany Bay, and thence soon after removed to a 
more favourable locality on the south side of Port Jackson. But the experiment 
to found a colony with elements drawn from the criminal classes was attended 
with little success. The prisoners, treated with excessive rigour, especially under 
the administration of Bligh, thought only of escape, and thousands perished in 
their repeated attempts at revolt or flight. Large numbers, however, succeeded in 
reaching the inland tribes, and althoiigh many were devoured, by the natives, 
others rose to positions of authority and became tribal chiefs, while some played an 
historic part as conquerors of archipelagoes in the South Seas. 

Between 1778 and 1820 Australia received from the mother country 28,878 
convicts, of whom not more that 3,G61 were women. During that peyiod the 
births did not exceed 1,500, and so far from becoming self-supporting, these in- 
voluntary immigrants cost the British Government about £600,000 annually. But 
a new era opened for the Australasian world with the introduction of free immi- 
gration in the year 1820. The new settlers soon began to jn-otest vigorouslj' 
against the continuation of the S3-stem of transportation, and in 1840 their efforts 
were crowned with success, at least in the eastern provinces, for Tasmania continued 
to receive convicts till 1853, and West Australia till 1868. At j)resent the original 
convict element may be regarded as completely merged in the rest of the popula- 
tion, and all sense of humiliation associated with the early penal settlements has 
entirely disappeared. 

The while population, which had hitherto increased at a moderate rate, received 
a tremendous impulse by the discovery of the gold-fields about the middle of the cen- 
tury. Since that time it has been multiplied tenfold, rising from three hundred 
thousand to considerably over three millions in 1889. The mining element con- 
sisted for the most part of adult males, while other fortune-hunters, traders, artisans, 
or tillers of the soil, arrive in large numbers without families. Hence the discrepancy 
between the sexes is all the greater the more copious is the stream of immigration. 
In Queensland, which receives the largest influx of settlers, the women are least 
numerous, whereas the equilibrium is already nearly re-established in South Aus- 
tralia, towards which the tide of immigration has almost ceased to flow. From 
VOL. XIV. r c ■ 



year to ye:ir the disparity diminishes, because the excess of births over the nior- 
tuhty, which is much higher than iu most other civilised lands, acqiiires more im- 
purtuDce the more the general 2)opulation increases. This excess is already greater 
than the whole number of immigrants, and thus are gradually re-established the 
normal conditions. It is also noteworthy that the mortality is far less amongst 

Fig. 1G3. — Density of the Austealian Population. 
Scale 1 : 30,000,000. 

luiiaLitiUlts pti oquaie 1 


2 to 4 4 tu 8 

Each 9{iiiare represents a population of L'.OOO. 

^—^■^__^^^^^— ^_ GOU Miles. 

8 anQ upwards 

the women than the men, so that by the end of the century the Australian popu- 
lation, like that of Europe, will show a slight- predominance of the fair sex. 

In the movement of immigration the part taken by the English, Scotch, and 
Irish jjreponderates to such an extent that all other ethnical elements may be 
regarded as of no account. Language, institutions, usages, all is English, and iu 
some places even more English than in England itself.* Many Australians take a 
certain pride in resisting the current of modern ideas prevalent in the mother country, 
although their new environment obliges them to strike out fresh paths, severing 

* I'roude, Uicuiiu ; Aiithouy Troliupe, Amiralia auJ Xcw Zcalaiul. 



tliem gradually from their European fellow-citizens, and bringing them somewhat 
nearer to their North American kinsmen, whrim they resemble in figure, bearing, 
and even features. 

The German settlers, although numerous, are nowhere grouped in sufficient 
masses to enable them to live apart from the English, and, in fact, they become 
rapidly absorbed in the surrounding Australian popxilations. On the other hand, the 
Chinese, formerly introduced in large numbers hj capitalists to work their planta- 
tions and mines, had begun to form a powerful class, which threatened to drive the 
white workmen out of the labour market. Lut the national antagonism aroused by 
these conflicting interests, by the 

"yellow danger," as it is called, ^ig. 164— Increase of the Australian- Population. 
has had the result of rendering a 
residence in Queensland and the 
other Australian colonies almost 
impossible for the " Celestials." 
Thousands have had to leave the 
country, while recent laws passed 
in contravention to the treaties 
concluded with China, prevent them 
from landing, except on paj'ment 
of a heavy fine, besides imposing on 
them all sorts of vexatious burdens. 

As in all modern colonies of an 
industrial character, the immigrant 
populations have been to a large 
extent centred in the towns, and 
owing to this tendency the cities of 
Sydney and Melbourne alone con- 
tain nearly a third of the whole 
Australian population. Yet it is 
from the land that the settlers in 
this new world derive their chief 
resources. A comparative study of 
the ample statistics now available 

for the various provinces shows what an important economical position is already 
occupied by the Australian colonies. Although the vast domain belonging to the 
Crown has only been utilised to a relatively small extent, .considerably over 
100,000,000 acres had already been disposed of to private individuals at the 
end of 1886, and either brought under cultivation, or devoted to stock-breeding, 
and especially sheep-farming. Artesian wells, sunk in many of the inland regions, 
have tapped the underground reservoirs, and transformed extensive arid wastes 
into good grazing grounds ; projects are also being entertained for husbanding 
the surface waters by means of dams and other hydraulic works. 

Australia is the first wool-producing country in the world, ranking in this 

c (■ 2 


respect even bffore the Unitud States, the Argentine Republic, and Russia. The 
wool yielded by its twenty-four million sheep being of the finest quality, commands 
the highest prices in all the markets of the globe, and represents an annual value 
of about £20,000,000. The stock-breeders also own large herds of cattle, excellent 
horses and swine, yielding for the export trade considerable quantities of hides, 
suet, fat, tinned meats, and since 1882 frozen carcasses. The Australian dingo is 
much dreaded by the sheep-farmers, for he regards the flock as so much game, 
killing all he cannot devour ; whole folds have been destroyed by the depreda- 
tions of this animal, which, however, is rapidly disappearing with the natives 
themselves. The fox has also become dangerous ; but the great scourge of the stock- 
breeders is the rabbit, which, once imported from Europe, soon found a congenial 
home in the rolling, grassy, and flowering plains formerly tenanted by the kangaroo. 
Here the coney has multiplied to a prodigious extent, and although at least fifty 
millions are yearly destroyed by the shepherds and their dogs, he encroaches more 
and more on the pasturages to the great detriment of the live-stock. To get rid of 
this pest-several plans have been tried or suggested, amongst others the complete 
enclosure of the grazing grounds, and the systematic extermination of the does, thus 
arresting the propagation of the species. Experiments have also been made at 
Rodd Island, near Sydney, with " chicken cholera," inoculated according to the 
Pasteur method, in the hope that the rabbits themselves will spread the contagion. 
But fears have been expressed that the disease may thus be gradually disseminated 
among the domestic animals. 

In 1888 the arable lands comprised a total extent of nearly 8,500, 000 acres, 
yielding a relatively high proportion of produce, which is largely required for the 
local consumption. But Australia has already begun to take a prominent position 
amongst countries exporting wine, sugar, and tobacco. Some of the vintages have 
even acquired a certain reputation, and the burgundies especially shown at the 
Paris Exhibition of 1889 were much ajipreciated by French connoisseurs. 
Other classes of wine, such as bordeaux, champagne, moselle, port, are also success- 
fully grown ; but the vineyards have unfortunately begun to suffer from the 
ravages of the phylloxera. 

Cereals and other alimentary plants are chiefly grown on small holdings, while 
the Queensland sugar plantations, like the pasture lands of the Darling and of 
other regions lying beyond the east coast-ranges, are for the most part in the 
hands of large land-owners. " Despite the laws limiting the extent of land which 
one person may purchase, or rent for seven, fourteen, or twenty-one years, the 
tendency in Australia, as in the mother country, is in the direction of vast 
landed estates. In New South Wales the smallest plot offered for sale is about 
forty acres, but in some of the colonies allotments of 2,500 acres may be purchased, 
and syndicates have been formed for buying or renting far more extensive holdings. 
Certain estates, sheep-runs, or sheep-walks, as they are called, are laid out in the 
central part with a park, gardeins, and a magnificent residence with turrets, 
galleries, and conservatories, for the squatter is the true Australian aristocrat, a 
wealthy citizen, owning sheep by the hundred thousand, administering his 


doiuaiii throujili agents, and residius in the coast, towns, or even in London or 

Paris. Thus it has come about that the hiud is already hirgcly mouopolised by a 



limited uuuiber of weallliy capitalists, so tliat of a liuiidrcd settlors uot more tliau 
six are landowners. • 

The gold-mines which more than aught else have contributed to the rapid 
development of the population, still form a chief resource of the country. Victoria 
osjaecially possesses auriferous deposits of immense value, and to them was indebted 
for its temporary ascendency over New South Wales. But here, as elsewhere, 

Fig. 1G6.— Gold Mines of South-East Austealia. 
Scale I ; 7,500,00.). 

mining operations became continually less remunerative according as the precious 
metals diminished in relative value. Siuce the discoverj- of the gold-fields in 1851 
down to the year 1887, the total quantity of gold recovered by the miners reached 
the enormous sum of £3'?0,000,000, or more than £8,000,000 a year. The tin- 
mines, which occur chiefly in Queensland, and the highly pi'oductive copper-mines 
of South Australia also contribute to feed the export trade of the colonics, while 


the Xew Soixtli Wales coal-fields yield in importance only to those of "West Europe, 
the United States, add Eussia. The coal-mines increase in value according as those 
of gold fall off, and to them, combined with sheep-farming. New South Wales is 
indebted for the first place which it now holds amongst the Australian colonies. 
The silver-mines have but slight economic importance, whilst the salt lakes are 
scarcely utilised at all, as they yield onh' an inferior article full of impurities. 

The xVustralian manufacturing industry differs in no respect from that of Great 
Bi'itain, so far as regards the raw materiiils and mechanical processes ; but it is 
not yet sufficiently developed to give rise to any considerable export trade to the 
surrounding oceanic world. The country offers little beyond agricultural- and 
mining produce in exchange for the manufactured wares imported almost exclu- 
sivel)' from England, and for the teas received from China. But the total 
value of this commercial movement is prodigious, regard being had to the 
relatively slight population of the continent. Amongst trading lands Australia 
takes a first rank for the value of its exchanges compared with the number of its 
inhabitants. In this respect, however, the inter-colonial traflac is reckoned as so 
much foreign trade, because the custom-house tariffs differ in the different states, 
and are even regulated with a view to protecting si^ecial industries against the 
competition of neighbouring provinces. 

This local and foreign commerce employs thousands of vessels, constantly 
plying along the seaboard and on the highways of navigation converging from all 
quarters on the periphery of the continent. The main lines of oceanic steamships 
subsidised by the British Government maintain the communications between the 
great seaports of the British Isles and the Austral regions ; foreign steamers, also, 
such as those of the French Messageries and the German Company, touch at the 
more important Austra-lian ports. Thanks to the combined service of steam 
navigation and railwaj's, letters have been received in Adelaide from London within 
twenty-seven days. The colonies have also developed a considerable local ship- 
ping, and the mercantile marine registered in (he vai ious seaports already equals 
that of several European trading countries, such as Anstria^IIungary and 

In the interior of the continent railwaj-s have been constructed between all the 
large towns of East Australia, and the c( mplction of the viaduct across the Ilawkes- 
bury river now places Adelaide in uninterrupted communication with Brisbane 
by a trunk line over 1,700 miles long, or as far as from Paris to ]\Ioscow. West 
Australia at the south-west corner of the continent also possesses a few short lines 
and has just begun the vast undertaking of a coast railway to connect King George 
Sound with the South Australian system. The government of the latter colony 
on its part is pushing forward the construction of a trans-continental line between 
Adelaide in the south and Palmerston on the north coast. Tasmania also is 
adding a few branches to its main line between Launceston and Ilobart. With the 
exception of a few mineral and other industrial lines all the Australian railways 
belong to the several colonies whose territory they traverse. 

The telegi'aphs, which rti-e maintained by the national budget, connect all 



the colonief? with each other, as well as with New Zealand aud Java. Two sub- 
marine lines will soon be laid from Ceylon to West Australia, and from Sydney to 
Vancouver Island on the Pacific coast of British North America, aud thus will be 
completed the electric circuit of the English colonies round the globe. 

Education being compulsory and free, at least in the Government schools, all 
children pass a few years in the public schoulS. The average standard of instruc- 
tion is even higher in Australia thau in England, and as a rule girls attend school 
longer than boys. The expenditure for educational purposes is very high, amount- 
Scale 1 : 40,000,000. 


. Lines completed. 

■ Main Lines in progress. 

^^.^— — GOO Miles. 

ing in 1885 to £5 for each pupil. The Australian press comprises about 800 
newspaper,? and other periodical publications. 

At present Australia constitutes five, and with Tasmania six, separate colonies 
or states. According to the date of their foundation, their economic interests, and 
the influence of dominant political parties, these various states frame for them- 
selves different constitutions ; but all require their fundamental enactments to be 
ratified by the British Government, and also receive as governor a direct rei^resen- 
tative of the Crown. Nevertheless a recent controversy between Queensland 
and the metropolis on the appointment of a governor resulted to the advantage of 
the colon}'. In the two states of Victoria and Tasmania the institutions are demo- 



cratic, and the two chambers are elected by universal suffrage, applied in such a 
way as to give a proportional representation to minorities. In New South "Wales 
and the other states the upper house is either entirely or partly named by the 

According as they grew in power and wealth the Australian colonies felt the 
need of drawing closer the bonds of union. A federation, authorised beforehand 
by the Imperial Parliament, has been projected for the purpose of amalgamating 
the states under the suzerainty of England, and safeguarding the common 
interests on the mainland and in the South Sea Islands, liut certain questions of 

Scale 1 : 44,000,000. 

rivalry and precedence have hitherto prevented the definite constitution of the 
future federal state of Australasia, which must establish the absolute and perma- 
nent dominion of the Anglo-Saxon race in the oceanic woild. Albiiry, on the 
Murray, about midway between Sydney and Melbourne and on the common frontier 
of New South Wales and Victoria, seems destined by general conseilt to become 
the metropolis of the rising empire. In anticipation of its future rank it has 
alrcadj' been named the " Federal City," although it is still possible that this high 
honour may fall to the share of another place. 

To the first" conference held in 1886 at Ilobart, New South Wales, South 
Australia, and New Zeahuid hud sent no dek'gutes, although the I'iji ArchipeUigo 



was adequately represented. But iu 1888 a second conference, attended hy dole- 
gates irom all the Australasian states, discussed the establishment of supreme 
tribunals for the whole group of colonies. South Australia also, hitherto opposed 
to all projects of federation, has recently joined the movement. Australia natu- 
rally looks forward to the time when the confederation will be joined not only by 
British New Guinea and Fiji but by all the Pacific islands already acqiiired or to 
be acquired by Great Britain, and thus secure an incontested hegemony throughout 

169.— Kino Geokoe Sound. 
Scale 1 : 230,000. 

ISO Fret and 

the southern hemisphere. In many instances, notably during the recent discus- 
sions with France on the subject of the New Hebrides and the transport of convicts 
to New Caledonia, it became evident that the Australians asjiiire soon to be masters 
in the Austral regions, and proclaim, Kke the North Americans, their " llonroe 
doctrine" — the Oceanic World for the Oceanians. 

As a militarjf power Australasia would already present formidable difficulties 
to a foreign invader, for the adult population between their twentieth and fortieth 
year exceeds half a million of men thoroughly organised iu volunteer corps, which 


the coast railways might rapidly concentrate on any threatened points along the 
seaboard. Moreover, the three strategical positions of King George Sound at the 
south-west corner of the mainland, the entrance to Port Jackson at Sydney, and 
some islands in Torres Strait, have been strongly fortified. A fleet of gunboats, 
torpedoes, and swift cruisers guards the approaches of the seaports, while recent 
conventions with England provide for a rapid increase of the Imperial nav}-. In 
1888 over £800,000 were voted for the coast defences and the construction of 

Financially Australia is heavily burdened. The possession of seemingly inex- 
haustible gold-fields fostered a spirit of extravagance to such an extent that the 
public liabilities, head for head of the inhabitants, are already higher than those 
of France. But this incumbrance is much less felt, thanks to the rapid develop- 
ment of the population and of the resources of the land. The annual increase of 
the population exceeds a thirtieth, while that of the national wealth is still more 
rapid ; yet the demon of pauperism has already raised his head in Australia. 

A table of the Australian states, with their respective areas and populations, is 
given in the Appendix. The administrative subdivisions differ in the various 
colonies, and even in each state, according to the density of the papulation and the 
several political and economic interests. They take the various names of counties, 
boards, shires, municipalities, boroughs, electoral and pastoral divisions. 

Western Australia. 

This colony, the first Australian land sighted by vessels arriving from Europe, 
is the least populous and the least important of all the Australasian states, although 
its territory comprises about one-third of the mainland. It was founded over half 
a century ago in 1829, yet its residents of European origin scarcely exceed forty 
thousand and may possibly be still surpassed numerically by the natives, whose 
tribes continue to form relatively compact groups in the north western districts. 
In 1850, when the colony had no more than six thousand inhabitants, the British 
Government made it a penal station, and by the year 18G8 nearly ten thousand 
convicts had been introduced into Western Australia. 

But despite, or possibly in consequence of, this continuous stream of involun- 
tary colonists, the population increased very slowly until a decided stimulus was 
given to the movement by the discovery of auriferous deposits in the part of the 
territory situated between the Irwin and Murchison Rivers. The reluctance of 
intending colonists to turn their steps towards Western Australia was, however, 
mainly due to the dryness of the climate, the arid soil, brackish waters, and 
inferior pasturages infested in several districts by poisonous plants. The greater 
part of the colony, which stretches north and south from shore to shore, and cast- 
wards to 129° east longitude, is even still unexplored. The settled parts are, in 
fact, chiefly situated in the south-west corner of the continent and along the lower 
reaches of the coast streams, which follow in the direction of the north beyond 
Perth. Western AustraKa is thus an isolated world . scparaf ed by vast desert 



spaces from the other Australasian colonies, with which it communicates only by 
sea. The dangerous overland routes across the intervening solitudes still rank with 
those rare and daring exploits which are recorded iu the annals ol: geographical 

The centre of the colony is the city of Perth, which has been founded 12 miles 
from the coast on the banks of the Swan River, at a point where it exj)ands into 

Fig-. 170. — Pekth AMD ITS Envieons. 
Scule 1 : 600,000. 

80 to 160 
^— 12 Miles. 

the form of a lake. This modest capital is connected by road and rail with its 
seaport of Fremanfle, which lies on the south side of the Swan estuary ; but there 
is no natural harbour and the open roadstead is so unsafe during the prevalence of 
the north and. noith-west winds that the shipi:)ing has at times to take refuge 
farther south in Cockburn Sound between the coast and Garden Island. Never- 
theless, Fremantle is the busiest port in the colony, and here are shipped the 


wools, which have hitherto formed the chief resource of Western Australia. Rolt- 
nest Island, which partly shelters Gage Road on the west, is fringed with salt 
beds worked by the convicts and natives for the Government. Farther north 
follow the three ports of Rockingham, Biinbnn/, and Bus-telton, from which is mainly 
exported the jarra-wood {eticali/ptiis marginafa), which is highly valued by ship- 
builders and others for its durable properties and power of resisting the action of 
termites and borers. 

In the north-east the Perth railwaj' is continued up the Swan Yallov towards 
Guildfwd, Yorh, and BevevJeij, flourishing agricultural centres surrounded by 
pastures and scrub, where sandalwood formerly abounded. A carriage road 2;jO 
miles long, running south-eastwards to a great extent through barren wastes, 
places Perth in communication with Alhanij, almost the only seaport on the south 
coast. The lack of arable lands in the neighbourhood of this place prevents it 
from developing as rapidly as might be expected from its excellent harbour of 
King George Sound at the south-west angle of the continent. Albany is a port of 
call for steamers plying between England and Melbourne, and the terminus of 
the cable connecting the local telegraphic system with the rest of the world. The 
British and Australasian Governments are at present occupied with the construc- 
tion of fortified works around this important strategical point on the south-west 
coast. In 1826 the Governor of New South Wales stationed a small garrison here 
to prevent its seizure by the French after the systematic survey of the seaboard by 
Baudin and Freycinet. French geographical names occur most frequently along 
this section of the Australian seaboard. Farther east the only settlement on the 
south coast is Euda {Yircla or TcrgaUa), that is, "Morning Star" in the native 
language. Although scarcely inhabited Eucla bears the name of a soajTOrt ; it lies 
on the frontier of the two colonies of Western and South Australia. 

North of Fremantle the coast is almost a solitude for a spiace of about 180 
miles. In this direction lies the Roman Catholic mission of iVi?»- Ntircia, which 
has been made memorable by the ethnographical studies of Rudesiudo Salvado. 
Still farther north the work of colonisation has acquired considerable importance 
in the district of Victoria, which is watered by the river Greenough. The bunks 
of this w'ver are fringed by wheatfields, and the produce of the districts is forwarded 
by rail to the port of GririMfon, which stands on Champion Bay. Off this coast 
flows the Geelvink Channel formed by the chain of the Houtman's Abrolhos islets 
and reefs. The Victoria district is the chief mineral region of Western Australia, 
abounding especially in lead, copper, and gold. Beyond it the spacious inlet of 
Shark's Bay and the north-west coast are annually visited by about a hundred fishing 
smacks in quest of pearls and mother-of-pearl, for which the chief depot is the 
village of Roehournr, at the mouth of the Sherlock River. The yearly value of the 
fisheries exceeds £20,000 ; but nowhere else in Australia have the whites treated 
more oppressively the native labourers, who have been practically reduced to the 
position of slaves by a so-called act of " assignation." 

The whole of the Australian seaboard stretching round to the north-east was 
uninhabited by any white people before the year 1869, when auriferous deposits 


were discovered iu the billy district bounded ori the south by the course of the 
Fitzroy River. This event attracted large numbers of gold-hunters to the spot ; 
villages sprang up, and ports were established along the river-banks and on the 
shores of the neighbouring inlets. In • 1886, when the mines were f)laced under 
official administration, this district of Kimbcrley was found to be inhabited by 
several thousands, mostly connected with the mining industry. Dcrhij, the capital, 
stands on the east side of an estuary, where the Fitzroy River reaches the coast. 

The settlement of this part of Australia, which over half a . century ago was 
already described by George Grey as one of the most promising regions on the 
continent, is an event of jorimary importance ia the history of colonisation. 
Although comparatively well watered and fairlj' j)roductive, it had been avoided by 
the British colonists owing to the heat of the climate. It certainly lies entirely 
within the tropical zone ; but it occupies a favourable position over against the 
Dutch East Indies, from which it is separated only by the narrow Arafura Sea. 
Hence Kimberley is probably destined to become the chief centre of trade and 
intercourse between the Indonesian and Australian populations, at present almost 
complete strangers to each other. In some of the estuaries along this coast the 
tides rise to a height of from 35 to 40 feet. 

Of all the continental colonies Western Australia has remained longest attached 
to Great Britain by direct administrative ties. Hithecto not only the Gover- 
• nor and Executive Council, but even the Legislative Council has been at least 
partly nominated by the Central Government. In 1889, however, the Imperial 
Parliament favourably entertained a bill passed by the Legislative Council substi- 
tuting a responsible government for the hitherto existing rejsresentative system of 
administration. By this change Western Australia will doubtless soon be placed on 
the same footing as all the other colonies of the Australian-continent. It is divided 
into fourteen electoral districts, the franchise being extended to all citizenrj ^^os- 
sessing landed property of the value of £1,000, or paying a yearly rent of at least 
£10. The defensive forces comprised in 1889 a volunteer corps of over 600 men. 

South AusTitALiA. 

The name -of this colony is scarcely justified by its geographical position, for 
its territory does not include the southernmost part of the mainland, while on the 
other hand it stretches right across the continent northwards to the Arafura Sea. 
It thus comprises all the central region westwards to 129° east longitude, and 
eastwards to 138° on the Gulf of Carpentaria and as far as 141° on the slope 
draining to the Southern Ocean. On the north coast it embraces the peninsula 
skirting the west side of the Gulf of Carpentaria ; on the south the Gulfs of 
Spencer and S. Vincent form the chief indentations of its seaboaixl, and over a 
fourth of the mainland lies within its borders. 

The settlement of South Australia began on the shores of the southern gulfs in 
the year 1834, and towards the close of 1836 the ofiicial proclamation of the new 
state was made near the port of Glenelg under a large eiicalyptus, whose now life- 


less stem bears a commemorative inscription. Here the people gather in multir 
tudes on the anniversaries of the foundation to celebrate the national feast. Free 
settlers alone have taken part in the development of the colony, where no convicts 
from bej'ond the seas were ever landed. Nevertheless, the growth of the popula- 
tion was extrcmcl}' slow down to the year 184G, when the discovery of rich copper- 
mines immediately attracted numerous speculators and miners. But notwithstanding 
this stimulus South Australia has lagged far behind the three eastern colonies of 
"N'ictoria, New South Wales, and Queensland in popxilation, wealth, and trade, 
lu the years 1885-6 it even presented the phenomenon, unique in Australia, of a 
temporary decrease in the number of its inhabitants, the emigration to the West 
Australian mines and to other regions having exceeded the immigration and the 
natural excess of births over the mortality. 

Although the climate is one of the healthiest for Europeans, it is dreaded on 
account of its heats and the lack of invigorating sea breezes, the concave formation 
of the coast facing the desert causing the j)arching winds of the interior to in-evail. 
Infant mortality is high, and the acclimatisation of the race presents greater diffi- 
culties than in most other regions of the continent. Here also consumption, the 
Australian malady /*«/• excellence, is more common than in any of the other colonies. 
Another obstacle to progress are the long periods of drought, which occasionally 
occur, and which render much of the land arid, unsuitable for tillage, and in 
many j^laces even saline and destitute of vegetation. In the northern districts the 
torrid climate is still more unsuitable for European workmen, so that the suzerain 
(jfovernment has been fain to tolerate the introduction of Malay and Chinese 

Thus nearly the whole of the white population is confined to the southern 
region between the lower course of the Murray and the east side .of Spencer Gulf. 
From here also come the copper, wool, and wheat, from which South Australia 
derives its importance in the British colmial world; for .the production of wheat it 
takes the first place amongst the Australian states. Essays have been made at. 
ostrich-farming, while wine-growing has received a great development during the 
last few years ; wines are already produced, which the growers in the different 
districts compare to port, sherry and hock. The colony also exports fruits and 

Adelaide, the " Model Citj'," capital of South Australia, ranks for population 
after Melbourne and Sydney, already containing over one hundred and thirty 
thousand inhabitants in the central quarters and its suburbs. It lies on a plain 
near the sea not far from the first slopes of the Lofty Range rising to the east, 
and on the banks of the Torrens River, which often runs dry. The broad streets 
running at right angles in the direction of the cardinal points dispose the city in 
a number of regular blocks. Enormous sums have been expended on the con- 
struction of vast reservoirs in the neighbouring hills needed to supply the cit}' 
with water. There are also numerous promcnidcs, extensive parks, and one of 
the most beautiful botanic gardens in tlie wculd. The University of South 
Australia, the Institute and other leai'ued societies, have their seat in the capital, 



where is coiitrecl all the scientific and literary work of the inhabitants. Beyond 
Adelaide, which, with its suburbs of Jlindmarsh , Noncood, and Kensington, alone 
contains over a third of the whole colonial population, there are no towns or 
villages except those exclusively occupied with trade, agriculture, or mining. 

Adelaide has several ports, the chief of which, Port Adelaide, lies three or four 
miles to the north-west near a creek which has been artificially deepened and lined 

rig. 171. — Adelaide. 
fade 1 : 28ii.onn. 


to 16 16 to 32 

Feet. Feet. 

e • Lighthouses. 

with wharves. Glcnchj, situated to the soixth-west, and almost connected with the 
capital by continuous groups of suburbs and villas, is a port of call for mail 
steamers. Farther south follows Victor Harbour, on the shore of the Southern 
Ocean, but connected with the capital by a railway. Another line running north- 
eastwards to Morfjan, at the chief bend of the Lower Murriiy, places Adelaide in 
communication with the only line of inland- navigation on the Australian main- 
land ; above Morgan the Murray is navigated by about forty small steamers. 



The little 'fluvial port of Goolwa, seven miles above the mouth of the Murray 
on its terminal Lake Alexandriua, exports a considerable quantity of wool. 
Beyond the river and near the frontier of Victoria, Mount Ganihier, or Gamhierfoii, 
at the southern foot of the volcano of Kke name, is the most active commercial 

Fig. 172. — Adelaide, Spe-vceb axd St. Vinxen't Gulfs. 
Scale 1 : 5,300,000. 



ICO Feet and 

, 1.0 Milts. 

centre in the southern districts. It is connected by rail with the capital, and 
supplied with water from the lake in the neighbouring crater. 

Other railways run from Adelaide towards the northern mineral districts, 
where Gaidcr, Kapunda, and Eoorbxja are the chief centres of the copper mining 
operations. The deposits of Boom-Boora, near Kooriuga, have largely contributed 




to the prosperit}^ of the colony, having yielded ores to the value of over £4,000,000 
between 1846 and 1877. No less productive are the copper mines of Wallaroo, 
Moonfa, and Kadina, on the east side of Sj^encer Gulf, while Tcdulpa, in the north- 
east, near the frontier of Victoria, has been enriched by its gold mines. 

Farther north the railway, penetrating inland through the pastures, deserts, 

Fig. 173. — Poet Darwin. 
Scale 1 : 330,000. 

E.stcf Gre.nw.cK 


at low water. 

and saline wastes, soon advances beyond the mineral districts, and serves only for 
the transport of wool and some agricultural produce. But when it has pushed its 
way across the continent this trunk line will be used by most travellers and 
immigrants bound for the flourishing regions of east and south-east Australia. 
The two submarine cables already connecting the northern end of this line with 


Banjuwangi, in Java, were broken by a volcanic eruption in the year 1888. They 
were supplemented in 1889 by a third cable laid between the same Javanese port 
and Roebuck Bay on the coast of West Australia. This line, which is about 
1,000 miles long, serves not only for the local communications of West and 
South Australia, but also, in case of interruption, for those of the eastern 

Pahnerston, the future terminus of the trans-continental railway, already 
enjoys a considerable trade. Since 1875 Port Bancin, on the east side of which 
Palmerston has been founded, has been thrown open to the commerce of all 
nations. This extensive inlet forms one of the largest, most convenient, and 
best sheltered harbours frequented by seafarers in the eastern seas. The popu- 
lation of the Norfheni Territory, as this region is oflBcially called, has considerably 
increased since 1881, when it contained only 4,550 inhabitants. Over four-fifths 
of the I'esidents are Chinese, occupied in discharging cargoes, in clearing the land 
for plantations, constructing highways, and working the southern gold-mines of 
BurriDidie and other districts. Here the employers of labour are vigorously 
opposed to the laws restricting Chinese immigration. Being unable to employ 
white labour in these torrid lands, they naturally look to China for tlie hands 
required to cultivate their plantations. 

A little traffic has already been developed between Palmerston and the Javanese 
city of Surabaya, which lies on the future highway of inter-continental trade 
between Australia and Europe. The essays at colonisation made so early as 182-1 
on Apslej' Strait between Melville and Bathurst Islands, as well as subsequent 
attempts of the same kind made farther east on the Coburg Peninsula, all proved 
failures owing to the isolated position of the British settlers in a torrid climate 
and on an unproductive soil, covered with an almost ferruginous laterite. The 
station of Victoria, founded on the fine harbour of Essington, has never ris' n to 
the rank of a town. 

The colony of South Australia is autonomous. The governor, appointed bj' the 
Queen, is assisted by six responsible ministers chosen by the Parliament, which 
itself consists of members elected by the citizens. The Legislative Council, or 
Upper House, comprises twenty-four members, and the House of Assembly, or 
Lower House, is formed of fifty-two deputies, chosen for three years. The 
franchise for electors of the Council is limited to about two-fifths of the adult 
male population, holders of property, or paying a certain annual rent ; but all 
citizens settled not less than six months in the country have a right to vote at 
the elections for the House of Assembly. Some thirty municipalities enjoy the 
privileges of communal autonomy. The armed forces comj^rise over three thou- 
sand volunteers and the crew of a small man-of-war. 


Its very name is an indication of the recent creation of this colony. Originally 
it formed part of New South Wales, from which it was not separated till llio year 


1859. But altliougti its political life is shorter than that either of Western or 
South Australia, it already surpasses both of those states in trade and population. 
Convicts, however, had been transported to the shores of Moreton Bay so early 
as the year 1824, and the territory had been thrown open to free colonisation in 
1842. The inhabitants of North Queensland, whose economic interests are not 
always in harmony with those of the southern region, are already demanding the 
formation of a new state, to comprise the shores of the Gulf of Carpentaria, the 
York Peninsula, the Torres Strait islands, and British New Guinea. The country 
is meantime administratively constituted in the three " divisions " of North, 
Central, and South Queensland, which are regarded as destined one day to form 
three distinct political states. 

More than one-third of the inhabitants is still concentrated in the south-east 
corner of Queensland, the old district of Moreton Bay. But beyond this region 
centres of population are already very numerous, settlers being attracted to 
different jjarts by the diverse agricultural and industrial interests. As in New 
South "Wales there are vast grazing grounds, especially on the western slope of the 
mountains ; Queensland also possesses rich auriferous deposits, which are scattered 
throughout the whole colony from the New South Wales frontier to the York 
Peninsula, and the valleys sloping towards the Gulf of Carpentaria. Its deposits 
of copper, tin, and coal have also attracted speculators and miners to various parts 
of the territory, while such alimentary plants as wheat, maize, sugar-cane, tea, 
ptne-applfis, which do not thrive under the same climate, have had the consequence 
of developing several distinct centres of colonisation throughout the colony. 

For the cultivation of tropical plants the growers have had recourse to the 
services of South Sea Islanders engaged for a term of years, and usually com- 
prised under the general name of " Karnakies," that is. Kanakas, a word in the 
Polynesian languages simply meaning " men." But this sj'stem of contract 
labour, carried on by means of the so-called " labour-vessels," has been a fruitful 
source of crime and of outrages against the freedom and even the Kvcs of the 
Oceanic peopks. The presence of the Chinese also has given rise in Queensland 
to the most cruel injustice on the part of the " representatives of the higher 
civilisation." Kidnapping expeditions have often been organised in this colony, 
which have spread havoc and ruin throughout many Melanesian and Polynesian 

Briiibanc, capital and oldest town in Queensland, stands on the river of like 
name, at the point where it expands into an estuary communicating with Moreton 
Bay some 24 miles lower down. Vessels of average tonnage ascend this estuary 
to a bridge about 1,150 feet long, which here crosses the river. The port of 
Brisbane, the most frequented in Queensland, is approached through the fine 
roadstead of Moreton Baj^, which is sheltered by a long chain of low islands, and 
connected with the capital by two railways. One of these lines runs north-east 
in the direction of Sandgate, a favourite watering-place and summer residence ; 
the other passes south-eastwards through Alberton to the southern entrance of the 
bay, which is accessible only to boats. Brisbane is suj^plied with an abundance 



of water, and like the other large Australian towns has a beautiful botanical 

Ipsin'ch, some 35 miles above Brisbane on a southern afSuent of the river, 
stands at the head of the fluvial navigation, and receives by water the wares which 
are thence forwarded to the various stations of the interior. At this point the 

Scale 1 : 1,300,000. 


50 Fathoms 
and upwards. 

main railway begins to climb the coast range, after crossing which it descends to 
Waricick in the upper vallej' of the Condamine, chief headstream of the Darling. 
The trunk line continues to r\m beyond TTarwick westwards through Tooiroomha, 
Dalbij, and Roma, while a branch connects the system southwards with the Sydney- 
Melbourne line. Another branch has already been projected to bring Point 
Parker, on the Gulf of Carpentaria, into direct communication with llic soutliern 


2fari/boroi(gh occupies, 170 miles farther north, a position analogous to that of 
Brisbane ; it stands on the navigable river Mary, which expands to a broad inlet 
and reaches the coast through an arm of the sea sheltered on the east side by 
Great Sandy Island. At Maryborough the river is crossed by a bridge about 
1,040 feet long. Sugar is chiefly grown by the neighbouring planters, and there 
are numerous factories in the district. On a southern tributary of the Mary 
stands the straggling town of Gijmpie, noted for its gold mines, which were 
discovered in 1867, and which by 1880 had already yielded a quantity of the 
precious metal estimated at over £2,000,000. At Burrum, lying to the north, 
rich coal-fields of excellent quality have been discovered, and productive copper 
mines have been opened in the north-western district of Mount Perrij, which 
is connected by a railway with the port of Bundalwry, at the mouth of the 

Rockhampion, another fluvial port, is the largest town in Queensland next to 
Brisbane. It occuj)ies a fine position in a fertile district, within view of the 
wooded cliffs skirting the broad river Fitzroy, which is accessible to large vessels. 
Rockhampton, which lies in the vicinity of rich gold, silver, and copper mines, 
stands, like Brisbane, at the terminus of a railway, which penetrates far into the 
interior in the direction of the central plains, and which ramifies to the right and 
left towards the mining districts. 

Farther on follow along a deeply indented seaboard the port of Mackai/, whence 
are exported tobaccos, sugar, coffee, and other tropical produce ; Bourn, or Port- 
Denison, with easier access than any of the other harbours sheltered by the Great 
Barrier Reef, and Toivjisril/r, which derives its importance from the gold mines of 
the Burdekin and its tributaries. Ravenswood and Charters Towers are the chief 
centres of the mining operations, the latter place producing about £250,000 of the 
precious metal annually. 

On the Pacific Coast the last frequented port is Coohtoivn, which was founded 
in 1873 and soon became a flourishing place, thanks to the vicinity of the Palmer 
River gold-fields. Cooktown is also the chief market and victualling station of the 
British and German establishments in New Guinea and the Melauesian Islands. 
The settlement of Somerset, which was founded at the extremity of 
York Peninsula in the hope of making it a second Singapore, has remained an 
obscure village with a bad climate ; but the neighbouring Thursday Island is already 
a much frequented station, which owes its prosperity to its favourable position on 
the route of vessels traversing Torres Strait. Since 1877 it has also become the 
centre of the pearl-shell fisheries in these waters. Here over two hundred craft 
of all sorts with one thousand five hundred hands find emploj'ment on the pearl, 
mother-of-pearl, tortoiseshell, and beche-de-mer fishing groimds. A central station 
of the London Missionary Society has been established on Eriih or Darnley Island, 
which lies in the eastern part of the Strait. 

On the slope draining to the Gulf of Carpentaria the two stations of Nornmntown 
and Biirkefown were till recently nothing more than little rural markets for 
Kupjilying the stock-breeders of the surrounding districts with provisions and 


European wares. Eurketowu had even been almost entirely abandoned, owing to 
(he insalubritj' of the neighbouring marshes. But the discovery of the Croydon 
gold-fields made in 188-3 immediately attracted thousands of speculators and 
colonists to these districts. Point Parker, at present the only seaport of the whole 
region, is sheltered from the northern winds by the Bentinck and Jloniiiifftoii insular 

Queensland has not yet severed the administrative ties connecting her with the 
British Government. The Governor and Legislative Council, that is, the Upper 
House, are still nominated by the Crown. The members of this chamber numbering 
thirty-six, are named for life, while the Legislative Assembly, or Lower House, is 
elected by universal suffrage for five years, and receives no payment for its services. 
The armed forces comprise a standing corps of 1,650, about 600 volunteers, and 136 
cadets. A gunboat and a few marines are charged with the defence of the coast- 
line, some 3,000 miles in length. 

New South W.^les. 

This colony, the oldest on the continent, has recently celebrated its first 
centenary. But it bears a name which recalls its dependence on England, and 
which certainly presents a somewhat cumbrous and inconvenient form. Hence it 
has been frequentl)' proposed to change its official designation for the simple title 
of " Australia," just as the United States have claimed the exclusive right to the 
name of "America." But the old designation .still holds its ground, owing chiefly 
to the protests of the other Australian states against this assumption. Doubtless 
there was a time when Xew South Wales really comprised all the European settle- 
ments on the mainland and neighbouring islands. But after the foundation of 
West Australia, and the separation of Victoria and Queensland from the mother 
colony, this state was reduced to little more than one- tenth of the continent. 

Yet even this space remains out of all proportion with its relatively slight 
population, for its superficial area is stiU far more than twice that of the British 
Isles. The southern frontier towards Victoria and on the Pacific slope, follows a 
straight line traced across mountains and valleys between the south-eastern head- 
laud of Cape Howe and the Pilot Moimtain on the main range. But farther 
inland the common limit of the two colonies is indicated first by a headstream of 
the Murray, and then by the 3Iurraj- itself as far as 141° east longitude. Towards 
Queensland the border line is marked by a mountain range beginning at Danger 
Point, and then in the Darling basin by the course of various rivers as far as the 
29' south latitude, which cons*^itutes a conventional frontier across the boundless 
inland plains. 

Since the abatement of the gold fever, which gave a temporary ascendency to 
Victoria in population and commercial importance. New South Wales has resumed 
its natural position at the head of the Australian states. She is no doubt less rich 
in gold ; but the yield of this metal is yearly losing its relative importance in the 
general economy of the continent, while wool, which has most contributed to the 



development o£ the colonies, is produced in the largest quantities in New Soutt. 
Wales. Here also coal mining, and several other less important industries are far 
more developed than elsewhere, and the claim to the hegemony among the 
surroimding j^olitical groups seems strengthened even by priority in point of time. 
Victoria, Queensland, Tasmania, and New Zealand were, moreover, to a great 
extent founded by settlers from New South Wales, and the very spot already 
indicated by Cook has thus become the true centre of the Australasian colonial 

The site chosen in 1788 as the first convict station at the antipodes of Great 

Fig. 17.5.— Botany Bay. 
Scale 1 : 160,000. 


Britain still remains unoccupied by a town of any si^^e. The shores of Bofftiuj 
Bay, whose name was long applied to the aggregate of the British possessions in 
Australia, are dotted round only by a few small watering places and scattered 
villas, which already form part of the environs of Sydney. The approach to the 
harbour is indicated by the monument to Cook, who discovered this bay in 1770 ; 
farther north stands the statue of Laperouse, who sailed in 1788 from this spot on 
the last expedition, from which he never returned. The names of Banks and 
Solander given to the two headlands facing each other on either side of the channel 
also perpetuate the memory of illustrious pioneers in the work of Australian 
discovery. If the inlet described in glowing colours by these first explorers has 

^- Urn 






C to IGfe*T. !atc3:f* 



lyorth IF' 


/ •' North I 

The Sound 

hjXLRi- y.Head 
^SL- Otiter NJlead 

ObeLsJc-hav /n^^r SJiead 

*' Batte^ 



\ Si. 6, 

At Outer SJL^aji 

, . V- Sh^kP 

" J a ^ 




Wen^tn-lcySLafC' > Bondi 


Bondi / 


o mOf^ IGVf'upivard.'i. 






since been abandoned by commerce, the neglect was not due to any lack of deep 
waters or of sufficient shelter for shipping, but to the marvellous group of havens 
which are coll