Page images
[ocr errors]


among them.


and confessed their deceits, giving up also the 'marakka,' or gourd, as a pledge of their sincerity. In this manner I have, at different times, obtained possession of five of them. These magical arts are practised by most of the tribes in Guiana. The Arawaks cail the system .semici,' or zemici :' and an aged convert of this class told me that it was first practised in the islands; and that · Arawanili,' its founder, was held in religious veneration

“ The whole nation is divided into about thirty tribes or families, each having a different name. Marriage is not allowed between persons of the same tribe ; and all children are considered to belong to the same family or tribe as their mother. For instance, if the mother were of the “Siwidi family, her children would bear the same name, and might not marry any member of it, however distant; but they might marry with any member of their father's family, or any other persons whom they chose.

Polygamy is much practised among them, and is the source of much domestic misery. Indeed the manner in which the female sex is kept under is the most painful feature in the social life of these people : it is, however, rapidly ameliorating under the Divine influence of our holy religion, to which the females are, in consequence, often the most ready converts, and the most firmly attached.

“ The past history of this tribe is involved in the obscurity which must ever attend a people possessing no method of recording past events. There are, however, several circumstances which would lead us to conclude that they were originally very differently situated; as a tradition or two in which the islands are spoken of as the place of their former residence, the manner in which they are located in a narrow line near the coast, and on the banks of the rivers, and the want of affinity between the words of their language and those of the other tribes, all point them out as refugees from some other quarter. It is most likely that they are of the same race as those first discovered by Columbus, and exterminated by his successors, in Hayti, and the other larger islands of the West Indian seas, There is a great resemblance between the few words of their language which have been preserved, and those spoken by the Arawaks at the present day: some of the words, indeed, are identical. This probability is strengthened by the strong aversion with which they regard the Spaniards, as “a people who hunted their forefathers with dogs, and by their remarkably mild and gentle disposition, which affords a striking contrast to the ancient ferocity of the Caribs, of whom they have ever stood in the highest dread, and who are now, like themselves, the inhabitants of the main land, reduced to a few hundreds in number, though once the terror of the islands and the masters of the coast.

“ Our illustrious countryman, Sir Walter Raleigh, mentions that he met with the · Arawacas ’ in the Amana, at the mouth of the Orinoco, and was guided by them to the main river, in his first expedition to Guiana, 1595."

ADELAIDE.Increase of Clergy.Extract from a Letter of a Lady, dated February 28, 1850 :-“ The Bishop of Adelaide has been in the country the last few days, to lay the first stone of a Church in a village in the Mount Barker Hills. He gets on very well, and is very popular, and doing, I trust, much good. The Clergy are very hard worked, but are zealous and active; and had the Bishop but the means of supporting them, he has employment for several more. There are now fourteen, where, but four years ago, there were but three, and as many churches, which is some improvement; but the increase, I fear, will not go on in proportion to the emigration. Thousands are flocking in upon us every year, and, if one may say so, it is to the new comers that the means of instruction are most important, to keep

[ocr errors]


up the religious habits and impressions with which many leave home, but which are too soon apt to be lost in the excitement, business, moneymaking, and dispersion of Colonial life.”

Port LINCOLN.-Oct. 30, 1849.-After about forty four hours' sail, we entered one of the most splendid harbours in the world, completely landlocked, and capable of holding the navy of England. The part where we anchored is called Boston Bay; but Port Lincoln Proper, which adjoins it, is a still larger harbour. We anchored within five minutes' row of a little town, which was clean and airy, but they had not sleeping accommodation for all the party, so some of them were obliged to sleep on board. The next day we took a row about the harbour, and landed at a place about half a mile from the township, which rejoices in the name of the Happy Valley, and is almost the only good patch of land for many miles. The splendid harbour is therefore nearly valueless, on account of the misery of the land; it is nothing but sand, rock, and scrub; great scarcity of fresh water, and nothing in the shape of timber but a tree called the she-oak, or more properly, I believe, Shiack; and a certain proof of poor soil.

The inhabitants of Port Lincoln are about ninety in number; and of the district not quite 400. Minerals have been found there; and it will depend entirely upon their development, or otherwise, whether the place rises or falls. The magnificent Colonel Gawler laid out a town five miles in extent, but there are about twenty houses, and some which are built of good stone, and have never been finished. The lots belong chiefly to people in England, who, not knowing its worthlessness, will not sell it, or only at enormous prices, which prevents as much being cultivated as otherwise would be.

Native Marriage. - On a following day the Bishop married two natives, who had been brought up in the School at Adelaide. It was really a lovematch, which is seldom the case with the natives. He altered the service, to make it comprehensible to them, and Mechi and Kilpatco promised to take care of each other, and keep together, so long as they both should live. I rather think the Bishop baptized them: he examined them, and was much pleased with their knowledge on religious subjects. Kilpatco was really the best informed, but answered less, as she would not have thought it respectful to answer a question put to her husband. I am afraid we do not behave as well as these savages. After the marriage of the natives was over, we attended the laying the stone of a Church, for which they have collected 150l.; and with the Government grant of the same amount, they will have a nice little building, as there is beautiful stone, easily worked, on the spot.


MELBOURNE.-Albury.Extract from the Melbourne Church of England Messenger, March 1, 1850 :-" The Bishop of Melbourne, after having met the Bishop of Sydney at Albury, on the Murray, proceeded across the interior of the country to Portland. The following is an outline of his journey, as gathered from his Lordship’s letters. After visiting Ballem, he proceeded to Kilmore, where he arrived on Thursday, January 24. Here he remained only one day, and addressed a congregation assembled at Dr. Lumsden's, the new school-room not being quite completed. On the Sunday he held divine service at Seymour, and thence continued his journey to Albany. So far the weather had been dry and hot, but heavy rains occurring as he approached the place, the creeks were, in some places, not very easy to cross. He arrived at Albury on Friday morning, February 1, and a few minutes after, the Bishop of Sydney drove up in his carriage. This meeting of the Bishops at Albury was very interesting, and if ever that little township attain such eminence as to be noticed by the historian, the fact may be considered worthy of record, that it was the first village in the Bush of Australia that witnessed the meeting of two Bishops of our Church. A store, which was just completed, but not yet fitted up, furnished an exceedingly convenient place for Divine Service; and great pains were taken to prepare it in a suitable manner, under the superintendence of the Bishop of Sydney. A small table, placed in one corner, upon a temporary platform, served as a desk for the Clergyman, and another table rather larger, at the same end of the room, covered with a clean white cloth, formed the communion table. There was a congregation, both morning and evening, of upwards of 100 persons. It happened that all the ordinances of the Church were administered; for there were not only several children whose parents were desirous they should be baptized, but four young women, and one young man, wished to avail themselves of the opportunity for receiving Confirmation. In the morning, therefore, the latter ordinance was administered, and the Bishop of Sydney delivered a short but very impressive address to the parties. The sacrament of the Lord's Supper was also celebrated; and it was pleasing to observe, that all those who had just been confirmed partook of it. The Bishop of Melbourne preached in the afternoon. On the Monday, a meeting of the settlers on both sides the river, as well as of the town's-people, was held; and an arrangement was made for immediately proceeding to build a residence for a Clergyman, who should divide his ministrations between the township and the stations on the two sides of the Murray; and whose stipend should be raised, partly by local contributions, and partly by a grant, which the Bishop of Sydney undertook to procure for at least one year. The gentlemen present appeared to feel no fear whatever about raising the money, On Monday afternoon, both the Bishops left Albury, on their homeward journeys.'


BISHOP OF MONTREAL.-In our last number we had the pleasure of recording the consecration of Dr. Fulford for this new and important see. His Lordship was presented to her Majesty on the 14th of August, and on the 24th he embarked from Liverpool, in the Hibernia, being desirous to enter as soon as possible on the extensive field of labour which awaits him.

SOCIETY FOR THE PROPAGATION OF THE GOSPEL.-It has been usual to adjourn the monthly meeting of the Board from July to November; but this year the Society met for the transaction of business on the third Friday in August. It was agreed that the number of travelling Missionaries in the Diocese of Toronto chargeable upon the Clergy Reserves Fund be ten, and that the Bishop be authorised to draw upon that fund to an amount not exceeding 1201. in any one year, for the purpose of enabling travelling Missionaries to provide themselves with a horse, or necessary outfit on first entering upon their duties.

Provision having been made by an individual member of the Church for the support of a Missionary at the Island of Tristan D'Acunha, the Society agreed to grant the sum of 1001. to defray the expense of his passage and outfit. The Rev. W. F. Taylor has been recently ordained for this new Mission. Grants were also made to the Rev. John Quinn, as religious instructor on board an emigrant ship proceeding to the Cape of Good Hope, and to Mr. Leeper, who has since embarked for Madras, being engaged as a Catechist, with a view to Holy Orders. Several new members were elected.




Missionary Journal.

OCTOBER, 1850.


No. VI.


The stations occupied as mission centres by the venerable Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, in Tinnevelly, are six; those of the Church Missionary Society are, I think, ten; and each of these has its own peculiar character and interest. I cannot, of course, enter into a detailed description of each of these stations, but I shall do what I can to give your readers an idea of the general aspect of a few of them.

I will begin, then, with that which I am privileged to occupy.

The stranger who lands at Tuticorin, (which may be seen on the map of India, on the south-east coast,) will find himself, after a ten miles' ride over a very flat and somewhat uninteresting country, in sight of my own station, Sawyerpuram.

About a mile and a half from the village itself, is an elevated spot, from which a rather extensive view of the surrounding country may be obtained. Standing here, let us look around. A long belt of palmyra trees extends for miles to the north, interspersed with tamarind and margosa trees. Hidder amid these are the villages of Kátta-shekkammál-puram-close to which we stand—Siva-gnána-puram, and Sérvey-Kâran-madam, at distances of about a mile asunder. It is a curious illustration of the diversity of Hindú superstition, that the first of their villages takes its name from a goddess of the Brahmanical religion; the second, from the Philosophic system engrafted upon the worship of Siva; and the third, from a Hindú warrior who has been demonified, and is the object of very extensive worship among

the peasantry of the south. In each of these villages there is a small Christian prayer-house, and a few Christians, who are very ignorant, and among whom Christianity

1 Continued from page 65.

[blocks in formation]


has been advancing slowly, under circumstances of most peculiar difficulty and trial. Further to the north is Puthu-kotei' (literally Newcastle), which has now become a mission station. To the east of our position is the village of Sebattyápuram, where there have been a few Christians for thirty years past. Towards the south are the hamlets of Puliangkâdu (the tamarind jungle), Naduvangkurichi (the middle hamlet), and further off towards the sea, Káyal, Edeiyarkadu (the shepherds’ jungle), and a few other villages, in which there are also small Christian congregations. To the west of us, across a barren sandy interval

, is the village of Sentianpalam, inhabited almost entirely by weavers; and about a furlong to the south of that is Sawyerpuram itself; and still further to the south, not quite half-a-mile distant, are the villages of Nayenárpuram, Suppramanyapuram, and several others, all named after deities of the Hindu mythology. To the west again, distant about a stone's throw, are two small villages.

This will serve to show how favourably situated my for mission purposes, being surrounded in this way by villages, which, though very mean in their outward aspect, and inhabited by men in many respects very degraded, are yet full of those who are heirs with ourselves of immortality.

Sawyerpuram itself is a collection of very small dwellings, hardly deserving the name of a village; and, in fact, was only selected as being a central spot, conveniently situated. The mission buildings have a pleasing appearance, and attract the attention of many a Hindú passer-by.

To the south of the village is the large temporary church, to be replaced, I trust, on my return by a permanent building, spacious and substantial, and if possible beautiful also. But this must depend upon the result of my appeal, and I am sorry to say that the amount of subscriptions I have received, up to this time, is not great.

The other buildings include the Missionary Institution, or College; the Preparatory School, with its refectory, &c.; the residences for the Principal and other masters, a girls' boarding school, catechists' room, &c.

These buildings are all of stone dug up on the premises. A neatly executed lithograph of them has been published, and may be had at the office of the venerable Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, 79, Pall Mall. It gives a very correct idea of the whole place. A large garden is attached, where many of our Indian fruit-trees flourish, the seeds of which were sown by

1 In connexion with this village, I would refer to my letter published in the Annual Report of the venerable Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, for 1849.

« PreviousContinue »