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indefatigable Captain Sprye, which
was ridiculed by an Under-Secre-
tary of State in his place in Par-
liament as a myth, is
now ap-
proved by many experts, and has
practically been adopted by Messrs
Colquhoun and Holt Hallett. The
Times' and other newspapers held
it as a good sign that the most
important Chambers of Commerce
in the United Kingdom should,
after hearing what these gentle-
men had to say about the trade
routes, recommend for the favour-
able consideration of Government

was that we ought to be equally successful. But it appears to have been based on wrong premisses in supposing that our administrators were endowed with the political and commercial sagacity of former Chinese rulers, which recognised the free intercourse between Cathay and the Golden Chersonese as of the utmost importance to both, and in believing that our merchants and others interested in the question possessed the indomitable and well-disciplined energy which successfully overcomes obstacles sufficient to deter less enterprising that their valuable services should people.

Several projects have been mooted for developing our trade with south-western China, with whose details it is unnecessary to weary our readers, as very lately they have been fully discussed at meetings held by various Chambers of Commerce and in the public press. The records of the heroic attempts made by numerous travellers from both starting points to bring these plans to a practical issue were extremely interesting but confessedly abortive; for after all we have not advanced farther, beyond realising the fact that the object in view is not nearly so easy as it looks on the map. The same may be said of the notable French expedition, culminating in one of the most brilliant geographical exploits of modern times, in which the disappointment was enhanced by the discovery that the Mehkong was by no means a second Irawadi. The subsequent failure by which, at vast cost of lives and treasure, it was found that the alternative route by the Soukoi or Red River was also impracticable, is similarly a case in point.

By the strange irony of fate, it happens that the project so ably and persistently advocated by the

meet with suitable recognition; forgetting, perhaps, that scarcely two decades ago the gallant Sprye could boast of exactly similar experience, and that, consigned to neglect and oblivion, he ultimately died of a broken heart.

In a leading article in the Times' of the 4th April 1885, pointing out the futility of endeavouring to rouse the official world to appreciation of the importance of new railways, new markets, and new political relations, declaring "it is the nature of officialism to go on like 'melancholy smooth Meander, gently purling in a round," and bemoaning the defects of a "parliamentary system that provides no motive power to force officialism into any more fruitful kind of activity," it is suggested that if plans of this kind are good for British commerce, British merchants should take the initiative without relying on Government assistance. This reasoning would be sound enough if the projected routes were entirely in British territory; but, when leading to far Cathay, they are destined to traverse regions more or less free from control by any responsible Government, involving conditions wherein the considera

tion of the political elements are inevitable, even the most reckless speculator might reasonably hesitate. But if both England and China prove that they are fully determined to act up to the spirit of the convention executed at Pekin on the 24th July last, Article III. of which binds both to protect and encourage trade between China and Burma, there will be no excuse for the mercantile world hanging back any longer -indeed it will be to blame, if together with both they do not rise to the level of the situation.

Without wishing to harass our readers with the details of the recent controversy regarding the relations between China and Burma, we cannot very well avoid reference to a matter of paramount interest and importance to the regions we are now discussing. We allude to Lord Roseberry's convention, which practically acknowledges the Sun of Heaven as suzerain of a country which not many months ago was declared, by royal proclamation, to be part and parcel of the British empire. Its inherent weakness, as noted by Mr Demetrius Boulger, "is that it leaves China precisely in her old position that is to say, with the option of choosing whether she will have trade intercourse with Burma or not. If Mr Boulger unhappily reflects Celestial opinion, it would be impracticable in this matter, for he declares the Chinese "instinctively dread the prospect of unrestricted trade between British territory and Yunnan, and that nothing is further from their wishes than that opening of south-western China,' which has set all the factories of Lancashire and Birmingham alive, at least

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1 Asiatic Quarterly Review, Oct. 1886.

That the

with expectation."2 Chinese should go heart and soul with us is, of course, much to be desired, for by mutual co-operation great results may be expected; but even passive indifference or actual obstruction on the part of officials will not avail in the long-run. For if we, alive to our manifest duty, bring home to the minds of intending settlers that our territory is a safe, pleasant, and profitable country in which to reside, and in this way offer sufficient inducements to traders and agriculturists to emigrate to the Irawadi valley, they will come, and if we would, we could not stop them; the more so if, by improving the communications between the two countries, we practically prove that the easiest and most convenient outlet for the pent-up trade of the south-western provinces of the Middle Kingdom is through British territory. The Chinese Government at one time successfully managed to put an embargo on emigration; but this craze soon developed proportions which defied control. A like result is inevitable in reference to the development of the trade of, and emigration from, this region. When once they have been fairly started, even the ukase of the Sun of Heaven will be as ineffectual to arrest their progress as was the bidding of King Canute in the case of the obstinate waves of the sea.

Let us look at the situation frankly. If Lord Rosebery's convention does not prove a dead letter, these results may be accepted as a foregone conclusion. It will be, therefore, useless to deprecate, as some do, the natural pressure of Chinese immigration to the valley of the Irawadi, which

2 Ibid., April 1886.

has been going on for centuries, and which, though rudely checked for twenty years and more by the Mohammedan revolution in Yunnan, will doubtless reassert itself sooner or later. Mr Logan, in his valuable contributions to the ethnology of south-eastern Asia, declares that no other part of the world presents such an instance of the advance of a civilised race, under the pressure of population, from the plains into the heart of a vast alpine region. The combination of enterprise with welldisciplined energy, which distinguishes the Chinese, gradually overcomes, he avers, all physical impediments, for wherever any other race can find a footing, they can flourish.

In order to do our duty by a country whose sparseness of population prevents us from utilising its vast natural resources, the impolicy of reducing the number of its inhabitants, or discouraging settlers which coercive measures must involve is sufficiently obvious. Let us hope, however, that a more sympathetic policy may commend itself to our authorities, provocative of the cordial goodwill rather than the bitter enmity of our new fellow-subjects, and also that Upper Burma may be made more attractive as a place for residence than it is now. The natural forebodings in regard to the advent of Celestials, indulged in by white races, are untenable in the case of homogeneous peoples; and the supposed difficulty of governing the former would indeed be a sorry plea for refusing to welcome people who, if properly managed,

would before long justify us in referring to our possessions in Farther India by their old name of the Golden Chersonese. Apropos of these remarks, we would quote the opinion of an eminent authority, expressed in a letter lately received :

"The one thing needful," he says, "to make the Chinaman useful, is to govern him firmly and fairly. The traders, pure and simple, will probably not stay. The landholder will, shall govern; but, as the Straits Setif he is governed fairly, as I trust we tlements have proved, he must also be governed firmly, or he will be troublesome. He is very clannish, and clan-feuds are petty wars. The Straits Settlements, it is true, are supplied mainly from the populations

of the confines of Fuh Kien and Kwang Tung, who are eminently clannish and rebellious. Their land

is the cradle of political affiliations. In Yun Nan we have a different people-just now fearfully impoverished, and I cannot say what their temper may be."

In conclusion, it will be seen, from what we have already said, the astute statesmen of the Flowery Land, in bygone days, considered the possession of Yunnan of paramount importance to the empire, because it dominated the trade as well as political matters connected with the peoples of Farther India. Further, it will be noticed that, in spite of encountering great physical difficulties, large Chinese caravans have for centuries, at regular intervals, visited the Irawadi basin, without being encouraged by the least reciprocity. There is absolutely, therefore, no valid reason to imagine that Celestial

1 There are many reasons for believing that some three centuries ago Burma had a much larger population than it has now. She has never recovered the results of the terrible internicine wars of the sixteenth century, graphically described by Purchase in his Pilgrimage, published 1610.

statesmen of the present day will reverse the policy of their predecessors, or that the merchants of the south-western provinces will abandon the old trade routes, unless they happen to find a better outlet for the produce of these countries, which necessarily remains undeveloped, owing to the serious difficulties of export. Our obvious duty in connection with this dilemma has already been briefly sketched; and unless we prove ourselves equal to the occasion, we cannot with propriety denounce the alleged impracticability of the Chinese-as we sometimes are wont to do when by our own lâches our pet schemes have miscarried.

Of the four great Asiatic Powers, Russia, Turkey, China, and England, the first only is aggressive. Like a great octopus,

she stretches forth her claws on every side to grasp the other

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three. These have interests in common, which tend to the necessity of an alliance as a counterpoise to the attacks of the common enemy. Possibly some such rangement may have been in contemplation to induce Lord Rosebery to pay-what appears to outsiders an extraordinarily high price for the goodwill of China. Be that as it may, our present relations with the Court of Pekin seem all that can be desired. There are reasons also for believing that the Sun of Heaven is as kindly disposed to the suc cessor of his Younger Brother, the Great Chief of Righteousness, as he was towards his GoldenFooted Majesty; and that he hails with pleasure the prospect of the closest relations existing between the people of Cathay and the Golden Chersonese.

A. R. MACMAHON,

Major-General.

SARRACINESCA.

[Copyright by F. Marion Crawford, 1886.]

CHAPTER XXVII.

WHEN Donna Tullia quitted the Palazzo Astrardente her head swam. She had utterly failed to do what she had expected; and from being the accuser, she felt that she was suddenly thrust into the position of the accused. Instead of inspiring terror in Corona, and causing Giovanni the terrible humiliation she had supposed he would feel at the exposure of his previous marriage, she had been coldly told that she was mad, and that her pretended proofs were forgeries. Though she herself felt no doubt whatever concerning the authenticity of the documents, it was very disappointing to find that the first mention of them produced no startling effect upon any one, least of all upon Giovanni himself. The man, she thought, was a most accomplished villain; since he was capable of showing such hardened indifference to her accusation, he was capable also of thwarting her in her demonstration of their truth-and she trembled at the thought of what she saw. Old Sarracinesca was not a man to be trifled with, nor his son either they were powerful, and would be revenged for the insult. But in the meanwhile she had promised to produce her proofs; and when she regained enough composure to consider the matter from all its points, she came to the conclusion that after all her game was not lost, seeing that attested documents are evidence not easily refuted, even by powerful men like Leone and Giovanni Sarracinesca. She gradually convinced herself that their indifference was a pre

tence, and that they were accomplices in the matter, their object being to gain Corona with all her fortune for Giovanni's wife. But, at the same time, Donna Tullia felt in the depths of her heart a misgiving: she was clever enough to recognise, even in spite of herself, the difference between a liar and an honest man.

She must get possession of these papers-and immediately too; there must be no delay in showing them to Corona, and in convincing her that this was no mere fable, but an assertion founded upon very substantial evidence. Del Ferice was suddenly gone to Naples: obviously the only way to get at the papers was to bribe his servant to deliver them up. Ugo had once or twice mentioned Temistocle to her, and she judged from the few words he had let fall that the fellow was a scoundrel, who would sell his soul for money. Madame Mayer drove home, and put on the only dark-coloured gown she possessed, wound a thick veil about her head, provided herself with a number of bank-notes, which she thrust into the palm of her glove, left the house on foot, and took a cab. There was nothing to be done but to go herself, for she could trust no one. Her heart beat fast as she ascended the narrow stone steps of Del Ferice's lodging, and stopped upon the landing before the small green door, whereon she read his name. She pulled the bell, and Temistocle appeared in his shirtsleeves.

"Does Count del Ferice live

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