Imatges de pàgina
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reasonable accommodations, consistently quantity: Upon this subject Your Comwith a due regard to the comfort, health|mittee have no observation to make, exand cleanliness of the people, of which cept that perhaps salt fish might be, with latter, even in the present uncrowded advantage to persons just returned from a state of the barracks, there was a great voyage of several months, exchanged for deficiency, owing probably in a great de- fresh, at least at that season of the year gree to the habits of the Lascars them- when fresh fish are so abundant in Lonselves. don as to be the cheapest article of animal food.

Your Committee also visited the build

The walls of the different apartments appeared to be white-washed and dry; the men usually slept on the floor whichings intended for the Chinese, which are is planked, without bedding, aud covered separate from those inhabited by the other with a blanket; the rooms were without Asiatic Sailors. There were not more furniture of any kind: but although the than three or four persous then occupying ordinary articles of European furniture are them, though at the period of the arrival not in use amongst the natives of India, of the China ships they frequently contain yet the want of hammocks, which the a great number. The building seemed Lascars use at sea, or of low bedsteads to well adapted for the purpose; the apartwhich they are accustomed in India, ap-ments were clean and airy; and a genepears to be a material defect. There were no fire-places in the apartments; those for the purposes of cookery were arranged in open recesses in different parts of the premises. It appeared, however, that during the cold season they are supplied with stoves, which are taken out in the summer. Your Committee also observed that proper accommodations for the sick were totally wanting, that there was no regular hospital, nor any sufficient means of separating the diseased from those in health: And when your Committee were in the barracks several sick were lying on the floor, covered only by a blanket or rug, in a room which was open to the yard, and exposed to the entrance of all the persons in the barracks; for this custom the objection stated to be entertained by the individuals to being separated from their shipmates, did not appear to Your Committee by any means a sufficient

ral appearance of comfort prevailed, which was not to be observed in the quarters of the Lascars. This Your Committee attribute to the different characters of the nations, and the habits which distinguish them. The individuals they saw appeared well contented: And Your Committee have no other observation to make with respect to the accommodation of the Chi

ese particularly, beyond the expression of a doubt, whether the buildings are sufficiently spacious for the number for which they are said to be intended.

In the course of the investigations of Your Committee, it has appeared that many Negroes and persons of colour are brought to this country, to whose situawith propriety be called; but not feeling tion the consideration of The House might it expressly within their province on the present occasion, they have abstained from doing it.


The returns, to which Your Committee have had an opportunity of referring, afford them the satisfaction of stating, that comparing the number arriving with the casualties stated, the mortality appears to be peculiarly small; and the greatest part of it to have arisen rather from the effects of a climate very different from that to which they have been accustomed, than to any want of attention or protection.

In the management of the Asiatic Sailors while on shore, the greatest defect, and one which influences materially their situation, and tends to defeat every humane provision for their convenience and their health, is, the total want of all regular authority either to prevent their wandering from the barracks by day or night, or maintaining order amongst them while within them. There is a want also of some regular superintendence, under the imme


over the barracks and the person to whom the care of the persons in them is committed; by an appeal to which, his autho

In answer to the inquiries of Your Committee on the subject of the want of bed-diate authority of the India Company, both ding and sufficient protection against the cold, they have been told, that the pensity of the Lascars to selling all these articles when supplied to them, for pur-rity might be duly maintained, or the poses of dissipation, is such as it has been grievances of the people, if well founded, found impossible to counteract with promptly redressed. respect to the food, there did not appear to be any just ground of complaint; it seemed good in quality and sufficient in

It appears that the general care of Asi atic Sailors; rests with the Committee t

ficer, to the Superintendent of the Lascars established in London: That when the ship is destined for an immediate return to India, the owner should be allowed to keep the Lascars at the port, under such arrangements as may be approved by one

more Magistrates, who should have summary powers to interfere, and upon failure of the owners, to order the neces sary provision in the first instance from the poor's rate or other public fund, to a limited amount, which should be levied afterwards on the owners or the masters, by warrant of distress, or if necessary by

Shipping; and that, on one occasion, a | Special Committee was appointed by the Court of Directors, to examine various complaints which had been preferred in behalf of Asiatic Sailors; that this deputation once visited the barracks, on which they made a Report: but, with the examination of the existing complaints, and the production of this report, their delegation seems to have terminated; and the superintendence of these sailors has again devolved on the Committee of Shipping, to which, regular returns are made of the state of the depot as well as of each ship on its arrival at Gravesend, and the num-attachment of the ship. The Magistrates ber which have occasionally visited the should also in these cases, have power to barracks. compel the owners or masters to take the Men on board, on the ship's return to India. When the ship is not destiued to au immediate return, Your Committee think that the best general rule (with liberty to the Magistrates to allow of exceptions) would be, to have the Lascars sent up to the establishment in London; where they should be maintained at the usual charge, until they could be sent back to India, in any mode which might be approved of by the Superintendent of the establishment, The whole expense of their transport to London, maintenance there, and return

India, would of course be at the charge of the owners.

Your Committee feel it necessary to advert to various complaints of severity practised in the barracks; but they have the satisfaction of stating, that those which came under their notice, appear to have been practised not by the European Superintendents, but by the Serangs, upon the Lascurs belonging to their crews: and as almost all the acts stated to them, appear on investigation to have been done by the same individual, they have no reason to believe that any improper severities are exercised by the Serangs in general.

Some years ago the number of Asiatic Sailors appears to have been so small, and the expenditure on account of them so trifing, that a contract with an individual seemed not an inconvenient mode of providing for them: But their number, and the expenditure attached to them, has gradually grown to such a magnitude, that Your Committee are of opinion the time is now arrived, when a regular establishmeut, under the immediate authority and inspection of the East India Company, should be formed, and strengthened by such legal powers as may be necessary, with a view as well to the care and treatment of the individuals as to the preserxation of an efficient police among them.

It appears to Your Committee, that in any bill which may be brought in for the general regulation of the Lascars, it will be advisable to introduce special provisions for the cases of those who may arrive at Outports. It is probable that the trade between those ports and India will be carried on principally in ships belonging to this country, and these ships sailing on their outward voyages to India with entire European crews, will bring back, especially in time of peace, a much smaller proportion of Asiatic Sailors than must unavoidably be employed in the navigation of ships belonging to the Indian ports. This same circumstance, however, may increase the difficulty of ensuring the return of these meu to India. Your Committee submit as an outline of the provisions on this subject, that on the arrival of any ships from India at any of the Outports, with any Lascars on board, the owners when they are resident at the port, or in their absence the master, should be required forthwith to deliver to the Mayor or other Chief Magistrate of the place, a Jist of all such persous, and to transmit another such list, either direct by the post, or through the Custom-house-of


To these humane suggestions, no doubt, proper attention will be paid. In Lascars begging about the streets.— consequence, we shall no longer see And here we cannot but advert to that national difference of manners between that people and the Chinese which displayed itself, a few summers ago. The Chitressed; never begged; and always had nese never seemed discontented, or dissome trifles the fruits of their industry to dispose of. In fact, they picked up. a good deal of money; and this being the reward of diligence, though exerted on trifles, could not be grudged them,

The reverse, in all points, was the character and conduct of the Lascars.

We now present an Abstract of the Regulations made by the East India Company, in obedience to the Act of 54th Geo. III. cap. 134.

The first provides for medical assistance, in behalf of Asiatic Sailors: that every ship shall have a surgeon, and a supply of proper medicines. The second resolution we give verbatim: it shews the desire of the Company to accomplish the purpose.

Every such Ship or Vessel shall be furnished and provided, by and at the expense of the owners or owner thereof, with a proper quantity of wholesome and good provisions, and Fuel, properly adapted for the use of the Asiatic Sailors Lascars and Natives, who during the voyage may be on board her; and such provisions shall be regularly served out to

em during the course of the voyage: And every such Ship or Vessel shall in like manner be furnished for the use of the said Asiatic Sailors, Lascars and Natives, with the following Bedding and Clothing, viz.

One Bed, to consist of three country blankets sewed together:

One Pillow stuffed, with blanketing:
One Blanket:

One Jacket, and one pair of Trowsers with feet, made of four yards of Europe red or blue cloth;

One Jacket, and one pair of Trowsers with feet, made either of Europe cloth or country blanketing:

One pair of Shoes :
Two woollen
Two pair of woollen Mittens for each



The Commander of a ship shall deliver to the officer authorised to grant the clearance, a true list in duplicate of every or intended to be taken on board, with a Asiatic Sailor, Lascar or Native, on board specification of the terms and the rates of wages on which they shall severally have been hired; and also true lists of the quantities and sorts of provisions, fuel, bedding, clothing, and medicines provided and on board the Ship or Vessel, for the use of the Asiatic Sailors, Lascars and Natives; and (if required) the Commander of every such Ship or Vessel shall produce the said provisions, fuel, bedding, clothing and me dicines, on board the said Ship or Vessel, for the inspection of the officer authorized to grant the clearance, that it may be ascertained that they are sufficient in quantity and quality for the intended voyage, before she shall be entitled to her clear


Which Bedding and Clothing shall be delivered out to the said men, or such of them as shall not be already supplied therewith, whenever any such Ship or Vessel shall be in any latitude to the North of twenty-four degrees North, or to the South of twenty-four degrees South of the Equinoctial line, and such bedding and clothing shall become the property of the persons to whom it shall be delivered out; provided always, that the same man shall not be entitled to more than one set of bedding and one set of clothing in the course of the same voyage: And the owner or owners supplying the same, shall be at liberty to deduct from the wages of each man who shall be supplied with any bedding or clothing in proportion for part of a set, or the whole.

All the Asiatic Sailors, Lascars and Natives on board any such Ship or Vessel, shall be accommodated with healthy and roomy berths or lodging places, for which the upper deck; and they shall also be purpose sufficient space shall be left under allowed proper accommodation for cooking, and to cook their victuals on board such Ships or Vessels, according to their own manners habits and customs.

The owners or owner of every such Ship or Vessel, from which any such Asiatic Sailor, Lascar or Native shall be discharged in any country, other than that at which he shall have been shipped or to which he shall belong, shall, at the cost and charges of such owners or owner, find and provide proper lodging, raiment, food medicines, and medical and surgical assistance if necessary for him, from the time of his discharge till there shall be an op portunity of his entering himself on board some Ship bound to his own country on which he may work his way home, and

the owners or owner of which shall be willing to contract to provide him with a berth, food, bedding, clothing and me dicines and medical advice, for the return voyage.

To these regulations the Commanders not only subscribe, but give bond for their fulfilment; and this ought to be known, for the honour of the country. Nothing can be conceived more distressing than the case of a sailor left in a foreign port by a hard hearted Caps tain; sick, perhaps, or sickening, at least ;-without money, without friends without assistance, without a home.

POLITICS are an ocean, the currents bearing away with them the state vessels in which are perpetually varying, and sailing upon it, with or without resistance, with or without detection. The course designed by the commanders may be well planned, and accurately

Our readers have seen occasionally, in our pages, instances of seamen left for years on islands far from human habitation; of natives of distant parts-the South Sea islands, &c.-brought to England, and then turned adrift among all the miseries of London manners. Such crimes caunot again occur; as it is to be hoped but, if they should occur, it is well to know that redress can be had through the enactments of the Legislature, as in the present case; through the interference of the Society of Friends of Foreigners in Distress, as in cases alluded to; and through those truly pious and benevolent persons who not rarely visit the abodes of these $trangers and foreigners, for the purpose of imparting to them such instruc-marked on the chart, but the buoyant tion as they may be capable of receiv-waves maintain a different impulse, and ing, whether by means of conversation, deliverance from imminent danger, or the consequence may prove to be either or of tracts suited to their circumstances. multiplied hazards in the most terrific forms. Of late, we have seen this ocean so boisterous that the most skilful pilot knew not whither he steered. Silence was prudence. A general confession of extremity was all that he allowed to escape him, whatever he might see or feel; even this he would have concealed, but it was too notorious; its effects also were too general among the sovereignties of the earth to be treated as trivial, or disregarded as imaginary. For a while, the storm appeared to be hushed; and during this interval the different effects produced by this calm on the minds and

This leads to the observation, that under the name of Oriental, or Asiatic Sailors, various classes of men are introduced into this country, who, in religions sentiments and observances, are entirely distinct, and even opposite from each other: some are worshipers of one god, as cisciples of Mahomet; others as disciples of Confucius, are a kind of deists, not properly simple and pure deists, if such characters ever existed in national communities-but, as swayed by the authority of some celebrated teacher. If we mistake not, idols are

objects of adoration by a portion of these people; while others abominate the resemblance of any thing in heaven above, or in earth beneath, or in the waters under the earth, if it assume the character of an idol; and, very many, are scarcely able to endure the figure of any living thing, lest it should be or should become idolatrous, in fact or in power.

This must render the office of superintendant of such an establishment, at once laborious and delicate. To deny either of these tribes the liberty of retaining its own observances, is to impose a desecration on the human character, to which no man is competent.

manners of those who were the most interested in the consequences, were striking to a patient observer. The least hopeful symptom observed among the French, the people most severely tossed by the hurricane was, the entire absence of morals from their reasoning, and their feelings, the absolute nouexistence of penitence for past enormities committed by them against their neighbours, and against the world. Even the writer before us, who is unquestionably a man of talent and information, never once laments in terms which speak the language of the heart, the miseries in every shape dispersed abroad by his countrymen, through all nations: a few common place phrases of superficial condolence occur here and there, which like black trimming on a

To accommodate them all, so many, and so various, implies an acquaintance with their manners and practices that can only be acquired by long observation and intimacy with them.

Exposè Comparatif de l'Etat Financier Militaire, Politique, et Moral de la France, &c. Comparative Estimate of the Financial, Military, Political, and Moral State of France, and of the Principal Powers of Europe.-By M. Le Baron Bignon. 8vo. pp. 518. Paris, December


white dress, must be accepted for mourn- | practised all over the world, under the ing; but this is fashion and form: it is description of the greatest possible boon not real grief. On the contrary, he and bounty? complains of l'extreme rigeur qui a It is not fair to judge M. Bignon réduit lu France à ses anciennes limites, by events subsequent to his publication: -c'est une sorte de provocation fuite a yet we can hardly forbear from quoting l'orgueil national: but, what has " na- his prediction that no such coalition. of tional pride" to do on this occasion? the Allies and their troops, could ever can national pride replace the property again enter France, as triumphed over destroyed, the devastations authorized its Emperor and its metropolis in 1813. by national authority, and carried to He concludes with perfect confidence, national profit? Can it recall to life that England will no more advance the myriads of dead of which it has pre- the sums necessary to put in motion maturely depopulated the earth? Where armies which shall again tread the sais the "extreme rigour" of reducing cred soil of the great nation. He has France within her ancient limits, by de-been deceived: in common with millions priving her of acquisitions obtained by of his countrymen, he experiences the robbery and massacre? France ought mortification of seeing Paris a second rather to be ashamed of retaining any time in the hands of foreigners, no lonthing which might serve to remind her ger disposed to treat it with that excess of her unprincipled spoliations and rob- of lenity, which it has repaid by ingraberies: she should intreat those to whom titude, never to be obliterated from the her stolen goods belong to remove them annals of history. with all possible speed from before her eyes. No such thing: and hence we discover in this volume one of the precursors to that violent overthrow of the Royal Power, which has ended so fatally for those engaged in it. M. Le Baron Bignon speaks also of the morale of the army; but he means by it little more than the attachment of the soldiery to their colours, their officers, and their trade of rapine and pillage: he discusses the état moral of France, but takes care to inform us that under this title he does not propose to present a picture of manners, except so far as relates to political purposes and indications.

On the present occasion, and under present circumstances, we shall not attempt a full examination of this performance: but, as we gave a place to the Report of the French Minister, in relation to the state of France,* at the accession of his Majesty Louis XVIII. to which this is intended as a kind of answer, we deem it but fair to record this statement also:-a sketch of a sketch.

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We then thought that the Minister had not put the worst face on things, as they stood:- M. Bignon does not affirm that he had; but, he more than hints it; and endeavours to impress this conviction on the mind of his

reader. He would wish to prove that France was not, herself, so exhausted, but what in proportion to other Governments, she was really in a powerful and prosperous condition.

To accomplish his intention, he institutes a comparison between the principal objects of national strength, as they

We have said, and we say still, that there is no security for the peace of mankind, so far as it depends on France, except in an amelioration of her manners in a diffusion of better moral feelings among her people, with a better sense of things in their relation to the genuine principles of integrity and vir tue. Either this;—or such a preponderat-relate to the preponderating countries of ing force as shall approach even to-Europe, and to France; as to,-the wards oppression; as shall Finances-the Army-its stores-the approximate to those measures of precaution of which Navy-the Public opinion, &c.; and France has set the fatal example in other from these he draws inferences on the countries. It is now the time for Europe course of politics to be followed by France We shall to ask France "how she likes the treat- with regard to each of them. inent she has long enforced on others? restrict our notice to the subject of FiWhy complain of that which she has nance, principally; for, though the

* Compare LIT. PAN. Vol. XV. p. 1193.

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