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and at each station beat his head with a
it is not to be expected that their club till the blood flowed down his shoul: conception of the Christian religion ed, and unable to bear the scene any long. could be either very clear, or, dim er, returned home. Fuitafaihe also came and gross at best, could be very to our dwelling, and staid about two bours.
soon directed towards the spiritual At two o'clock in the afternoon four of us doctrines of the Gospel. With what went to the fiatooka, where the natives, of both sexes, were still at the dreadful courage must those men and women work of cutting and mangling them have been nerved, and with what selves."
faith strengthened, who could look Mariner, who resided several years on such a pandemonium of savage at Tongatabu, was present at the emotion, and almost infernal pas. death of Finou Toogahau, the suc. sion, and resolve to lead these same cessor of Moomooe, and witnessed individuals, gentle and subdued, to the funeral ceremonies. Besides the foot of the cross. scenes similar to those above de. The contagious nature, if we may scribed, he informs us that some cut use the term, of some of the awa. their heads with such strong and fre- kenings among the Polynesians, quent blows, that they caused them. might reasonably be anticipated when selves to reel, producing afterwards reasoning upon such scenes as those a temporary insanity. It is difficult above rehearsed. That all should to say to what length this extrava. have an earnest appreciation and gance would have been carried, if genuine experience of divine love, the prince had not ordered Mr. Mar. is asking too much under the cir. iner to go and take the club away cumstances, but that the large mafrom them. “It is customary on jority have some inward light, may such occasions, when a man takes a be believed. Partial, indeed, it may club from another, to use it on him- be, but day is ushered in by the self; but being a foreigner, Mr. Mar- faintest change in the impending iner was not expected to do this.” gloom, which gradually disappears The fishermen of the late prince before the unclouded sun. came up, each bearing a paddle Such a scene as that described by with which he beat his head. They Mr. Melville, with the difference were singular in another respect: that in neither case was it occasion. that is, they had three arrows stucked by a desire to obtain favor with through their cheeks, in a slanting the missionaries, was witnessed in direction, so that while their points 1840, at Pagopago, Tutuila, Samoa came quite through the cheek and or Navigator's Islands. The awa. met in the mouth, the other ends kening there is described at considwent over their shoulders, and were erable length in the proper jour. kept in that situation by another ar- nals. The following is the testimorow, the points of which were tied ny of the witnesses. to the end of either arrow, passing Mr. Murray, the missionary, had over the shoulder. With this hors preached but a few minutes, rible equipment, they passed around
• When the house seemed to shake, the grave, beating their faces and and the Spirit to dart his arrows of conheads, or pinching up the skin of viction with such a powerful hand, that the breast, and running a spear
the whole place was on the move. Woquite through it.
men were carried out by dozens, convul
sed and struggling, so as to drive five or In view of such evidences of the six men about like trees in the wind, moral condition of the Polynesians, who were exerting all their strength to
hold and convey them away. I had heard
of beating breasts and tearing hair beMissionary Voyage, London, 4to, fore, but I have now seen and shall not 1799, p. 237.
soon forget it. The weaker sex was not † Mariner, Tonga Islands, vol. i, p. 328. alone affected; many men were carried
out lifeless as stones, and many could tions—expose him still to the al. scarcely be removed because of their aw
Jurements of licentious dances and fully convulsive strugglings."
games—tempt him with the lawless Similar scenes of extravagance independence of his former condihave been often witnessed among
tion, in place of the restraints and rude and uncultivated people, and self-denial of Christianity-and it even in our own country. Nor does
will be a miracle if he preserves such excitement prove the absence his integrity. But if in addition to of some intelligent conviction of sin, these temptations, visitors from civ. and the renewing operations of the ilized nations conspire to undermine Holy Spirit. The fact recorded of his faith and virtue, and Tommos this revival, that it was followed by
and Long Ghosts play their insidi. the happiest reformations among ous words into the ears of the Ideeas thieves and polygamists, is a suffi. and Loos of such communities, and cient answer to the cavils of such
with refined “hypocrisy,” devoutwriters as Melville.
ly clasp their hands and implore a The reader will see, in the moral
blessing,”+ the day may be long and intellectual character of the Po- postponed before pure religion will lynesians, the gigantic labors which become established in those lovely must be undertaken and the severe isles. trials which must be endured, on the Like all superficial writers, Mr. part of the Christian missionary. Melville leaves the greater part of Is it not enough that he should be his task unperformed. He does not exposed to the ferocity of savages, allude to the former degradation of and be buried in such a mass of cor
the female population, with its marupt and loathsome materials, with
ny consequent evils. But with a out being vilified in his native land partiality quite characteristic, he by the misrepresentations and de
quotes Kotzebue and Beechey in traction of his own countrymen ? support of his positions. The first,
We all know the power of asso- though uttering in almost every page ciation, and have doubtless felt its
a host of misstatements, gives us the influence in our own experience. following information, after speakHow strong must this power be in ing of the reform in the thieving retarding the development of spir- propensity of the Tahitians. itual religion among a people like
" Neither can I deny that the morals of the Polynesians, where the scenes the Tahitians were very exceptionable in of their former superstitions and another point, in which also the influence crimes are still marked by the ruins of the missionaries has been beneficially
exerted.” of a bloody altar or a crumbling heiau, and where many of the pre
The same author says: sent inhabitants participated in the “ After many fruitless efforts, some abominations and cruel rites of pa- English missionaries succeeded at length ganism. While no one can be so in the year 1797, in introducing what they irrational as to look for a genuine in gaining over to their doctrine the king
called Christianity into Tahiti
, and even experience of religion in every in. Tajo, who then governed the whole isldividual, the surrounding grossness and in peace and tranquillity. This conmust be a serious obstacle to the ad.
version was a spark ibrown into a pow. vancement of those who profess the Christian name. Convert a heathen body present looked exceedingly pleased';
| Omoo, p. 348. “ Hereupon, every and leave him in the midst of his Po-Po coming up, and addressing the docold idolatries and unholy associa- tor [Long Ghosi), with much warmth;
and Arfretee, regarding him with alunost * Missionary Life in Samoa; or Life of maternal aflection, exclaimed delightedly, George Archibald Lumlie. New York: 'Ah! mickonaree tata maitai!' in other R. Carter. Page 127, 128, et seq. words, 'What a pious young man!'”
der magazine, and was followed by a after the battles waged by the exasdreadful explosion. The marais were perated heathen, gave convincing suddenly destroyed by order of the king evidence of the truth and loveliness -every memorial of ihe former worship defaced-the new religion forcibly estab- of the new religion ! lished, and whoever would not adopt it, On page 231, says Mr. Melvilleput to death. With the zeal for making proselytes, the rage of tigers took posses- “The entire system of idolatry has sion of a people once so gentle. Streams
been done away, together with several of blood flowed-whole races were ex
barbarous practices engrafted thereon. terminated."*
“ The religion taught by But this result is not so much to be ascrithe missionaries is not true Christianity, bed to the missionaries, as to the civilizthough it may possibly comprehend some
ing effects of a long and constant interof its doctrines, but half understood by
course with the whites of all nations; to the teachers themselves. That it was es
whom, for many years, Tabiti has been tablished by force, is of itself an evidence
one of the principal places of resort in against its Christian principle. A reli
the South Seas. At the Sandwich Islgion which consists in the eternal repeti- ands, the potent institution of the Tabu, lion of prescribed prayers, which forbids
together with the entire paganism of the every innocent pleasure, and cramps or land, was utterly abolished by a voluntaannihilates every mental power, is a libel ry act of the natives, some time previous on the Divine Founder of Christianity, to the arrival of the first missionaries the benign Friend of human kind."
Our Russian navigator proceeds We have no desire to disparage to use the language quoted by Mr. the "civilizing effects of a long and Melville, that " with some good, re
constant intercourse with whites of ligion has done a great amount of all nations," —what they were we evil
. It has restrained the vices of cheerfully leave our author to detheft and incontinence, but it has fine. So far as all reliable history given birth to ignorance, hypocrisy; sheds light on the question, the only and a hatred and contempt of all civilization that Pomare I. and II. other modes of faith once foreign to and their chiefs learned was the use the open and benevolent character of firearms and distilled spirits, in. of the Tahitian !” Christianity, stead of the disgusting Ara-until which found the Tahitians without 1812, when Pomare II, during his a written language, and in twenty expatriation from Tahiti, professed years gave them the Bible, and
Christianity. books of scientific and literary char
The great temple of Oro was in acter, “ gave birth to ignorance !” the district of Ateburu, Tahiti, and Christianity, which found the Tahi- in 1801, a great council having been tians treacherous, like all other un.
held, Otu and his father pretended refined nations who have no moral
to receive communication from heav. sense, “ gave birth to hypocrisy,"
en that Oro wished to be conveyed which is a universal trait of the hu
to Tautira, in Taiarabu, and on reman heart when left free to devel.
sistance of the Arehuruan chiefs, a op its depravity! Christianity gave great conflict ensued. The anibirth to intolerance, when the truth mosities continued with various sucis that since the introduction of the
cesses for several years, when in Gospel, the liberality of the people 1808 Pomare fed to Eimeo, and is in delightful contrast with the fe. those of the missionaries who rerocious wars of their former state! mained behind him left on 22d De. Christianity put to death the hapless cember, 1809. During the exile of victims of its savage power, when Pomare his thoughts were turned to the record is in all Polynesia, with Christianity, and on the 18th July, only one exception, that the clem. 1812, he professed the Christian reency and tenderness of the Christians ligion. In 1814 he was invited to
* Kotzebue, 2 vols. 8vo, London, vol. return to Tahiti, and after a time i, 159. 1 Ibid, i, 168.
thought himself and his Christian subjects secure. The heathen par. false gods and temples were dety, however, sought to destroy them stroyed, they marched out in a body in a great battle on the 7th of July, and submitted to Pomare, crying 1815, but the Christians anticipating out, that the new religion alone an attack were all prepared to em. could have produced this change. bark, and escaped in their canoes to After this event, commenced those Eimeo. The heathen party finding improvements which have resulted themselves foiled, in order to revenge in making Tahiti a place where themselves for old quarrels, fell into whites of all nations can resort. a bloody contest on the spot, when This destruction of the groves of Pomare was soon after recalled by bread-fruit and cocoa-nut trees was the conquerors.
On the 12th of No. one of the most deplorable features vember, 1815, the last battle which of heathen warfare. The people, stained Tahitian soil with heathen as well as the chiefs, often spoke of sacrifices took place, and Pomare it in allusion to the blessings of was acknowledged undisturbed sove. Christianity. Said one of the chiefs reign. The overthrow of idolatry of Raratonga, to Mr. Williamsimmediately consequent on his ac- “We were fools enough to fight with cession, was the direct result of miss the trees as well as with men; since we sionary labor. And so in every in.
cut many down ourselves, lest our ene
mies should eat the fruit of them; and stance, with the exception of the others our conquerors destroyed. If it Sandwich Islands alone.
were possible I would put new bark on Our author betrays another evi. all these trees, and fill up the gashes in dence of ignorance by saying, page
all the others; for, wherever I go, they
stare me in the face, and remind me of 267, that the cocoa-nut and bread.
my defeat. However, young trees are fruit trees were destroyed “in the growing fast, and I am planting cocoa-nuts sanguinary religious hostilities which in all directions ; so that my possessions
will be equally valuable with ibose of our ensued upon the conversion to Chris.
conquerors; and I am under no apprehen. tianity of the first Pomare.” The sion of having them again destroyed; for hostility was on the side of the hea. the Gospel has put an end to our wars." then, who endeavored to destroy the These struggles, often resulting in Christians, and these girdled groves the depopulation of whole districts, of bread-fruit are the sad evidences were frequent before the introduc. of the desolation which marked hea- tion of Christianity—but wherever then warfare.
the Gospel has been established, After Pomare had routed the reb. wars have ceased. Mauke, the isl. els on the 12th of November, they and visited by Lord Byron, is anothtook themselves to the mountains er instance of the change. Two or and caves, expecting to be pursued three years before the teachers land. and put to death-their children ed there, Ramo-tane, the chief of slaughtered, their houses burnt to Atiu, one of the Hervey Group, in the ground, and their trees destroy order to extend his dominions, passed. But the stragglers after two or ed over to Mauke, and destroyed the three days ventured to peep out, people, set fire 10 the houses conand finding every thing around them taining the sick, and seizing those in peace, emboldened by their secu- who attempted 10 escape, tossed rity, came out of their hiding pla. them upon fires kindled for the pur. ces, and were met by assurances of pose! Occasional famines and these protection. They could not believe horrible contests were leading moiheir eyes and ears at what they tives for the infanticide so prevalent saw and heard, but when they found in Polynesia. It was indeed a specthat their families were safe, and tacle morally sublime in the highest their fruit trees uninjured, and that degree, that this same Ramo-lane, nothing but the great idol and the the murderous chieftain, himself be
came the first bearer of the words of knew would be crossed by the pres. Christ to the people of Mauke, after ence of missionaries. his conversion, and was one of the Mr. Melville continues first company who united in that “But let us consider what results are lovely isle, in celebrating the dying directly ascribable to the missionaries
alone. love of the Prince of Peace. While
“In all cases, they have striven hard to civilization has not yet taught the mitigate the evils resulting from the comtwo greatest nations of the world to meree with the whites in general. Such beat their swords and spears into attempts, however, have been injudicious
and often ineffectual; in truth, a barrier ploughs and pruning-hooks, the fe
almost insurmountable is presented in the rocious and sanguinary idolater has dispositions of the people themselves. learned the lessons of infinite love, Still, in this respect, the morality of the and weeps over the desolation he Islanders is, upon the whole, improved by has occasioned to learn war no
the presence of missionaries.
“ But the greatest achievement of the more."
latter, and one which in itself is most After the subversion of idolatry hopeful and gratifying is, that they have in the Georgian and Society groups,
translated the entire Bible into the lanKamehameha I, of Hawaii (Sand known several who were able to read it
guiage of the island; and I have myself wich Islands), becoming acquainted with facility. They have also established with the advantages of Christianity, churches, and schools for both children began to inquire what the new reli
and adults; the latter, I regret to say, are
now much' neglected, which must be asgion was. He however died on the cribed, in a great measure, to the disor8th of May, 1819, eleven months ders growing out of the proceedings of the before the American missionaries French.” touched at Kailua. Liholiho, (not What the evils resulting from the only unprincipled, but the victim of commerce with the whites" can the base arts of foreigners, who be, the reader has no means of made him drunk, and wrote “on knowing from Mr. Melville, unless paper and taught Kuakini the vilest the abolition of idolatry, in consewords in the English language, and quence of the “ long and civilizing engaged in mock prayer before intercourse with foreigners,” be the him,"*) feeling the restraint which leading feature. We presume, howthe tabut imposed upon his women, ever, from what little we know of resolved on its overthrow. This the subject, that the evil, so definitestep being favored by the chiefs and ly hinted at, is the wholesale prostiothers, he prepared a feast, and de. tution, in consequence of which the liberately taking a forbidden dish, Tahitians and the Hawaiians have went over to the table with the wo- been swept off by a terrific scourge men and partook of the repast. The since their intercourse with the cry went round, “the kapu is bro- whites commenced, and which has ken," and soon after the gloomy and been only stayed, and the hope of bloody edifice of idolatry toppled saving a remnant of these people fos. to its ruin. The “long and civiliz- tered, by the establishing of Christian ing intercourse with foreigners” had laws and Christian institutions. The nearly defeated the Sandwich Island "evils,” which perhaps might be remission, had not providential circum- garded as the chaffering and swindstances prevented the success of ling operations of foreigners, are too perfidious and aggrandizing schemes momentous and significant to be passof interested parties, whose cupidity ed over without a word. And yet or whose licentious propensities they this profound oracle of Polynesia and
“ Tahiti as it is,” says nothing in ref. Jarvis's Hist. Hawaiian Islands,241; ity of the islanders, is, upon the
erence to it, except that "the moralStewart's Private Journal, pp. 231, 232. 1 Hawaiian, kapu.
whole, improved by the missiona