Imágenes de páginas

not long since attacked by a mounted party of a mounted guide, it was my intention to have made Abasootu, in the direction he is now said to have the attempt; but the reported absence of Ferdana, taken. In this affair he had decidedly the advan- and the decided disinclination to forward my wishes tage, killing several of the assailants, and captur- on the part of all here, obliged me to give up the ing ten of their horses. I am, notwithstanding, plan. My next and only resort was to procure inclined to suspect that he is still here concealed guides to escort me through the mountain passes among his people.

to the westward, in which direction it would be

only needful to traverse a very small tract of counSOLITUDE SWEETENED. try, recently occupied by a part of Hinza's tribe,

and by which route I should srobably reach the And is this solitude to be alone?

colonial frontier in the course of a very few days. No heart to soothe-no face to cheer! This, however, was also declined; and thus foiled Is there not One to whom we're known, in all my plans for pushing forward, but two courses

Though yet unseen, still always near? seemed to offer-either to wait here an indefinite Ah, yes-a Friend the Christian knows, time for Ferdana, or to return to Bunting, with Who follows him where'er he goes ! the hope of inducing Fakū to furnish me with a

sufficient force to make my way through the hostile Dear Lord ! thy people can attest

tribes. On many accounts the latter appeared to Thou art a precious Friend indeed! be the most judicious; and I accordingly resolved Possessing Thee, they must be blessed ; to commence my return early on Monday morning.

For thou canst give them all they need! The wind from south-west to east has been very Sweet solace of my loneliest hour,

high for these three days past, and the weather Quicken my heart to feel thy power. quite cold, with a sharp frost whitening the ground

every morning. The soil, which is clay, and geWith such a Friend for ever nigh,

nerally bare of trees, may contribute to lower the Bereft we cannot-dare not feel !

temperature ; at present every thing is so dried Jesus will every loss supply,

up, that scarcely any grass is remaining. This And all His wonted love reveal.

part of the country, notwithstanding its present Let me but feel that Thou art near, arid appearance, is very populous, several villages And solitude will then be dear!

being visible from the windows of the mission

house. In no other respect does it appear an eligible Saturday, 8th.-Having understood from Gngu, spot for such an establishment, particularly as the the petty chief in charge of the station, that in the water is not convenient; that procured from the absence of Ferdana, the Incosi-case frequently is- neighboring well being frequently much discolor sued orders under the direction of the Amapakati ed after rain. (councillors,) I walked over to the village this morn. ing in the hope at least of forwarding a letter to the

Sunday, 9th. English camp. She informed me that the messengers despatched for Ferdana had returned last night,

“Be of good courage and He shall strengthen without having discovered any trace of his route; xxxi. 24.)

your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.”—Psalm and, as the councillors were all with him, nothing could in consequence be done; that the people Hence ye faithless fears away were unwilling to venture their lives among

Is not Jesus strong to aid ? the Amakosa, who were lurking about in small

He will be thy shield and stay, parties to cut off all intercourse from this quarter.

All thy cares on Him be laid. On inquiring whether she would give her sanction, should I find a person willing to go, she assented,

Has He not in love declared, saying, that probably I might procure one, but she “ As thy day thy strength shall be ?" was quite certain no one would go for her. As Grace sufficient is prepared Gagu had previously assured me, that a native For all who to His succour flee. acquainted with the country might proceed without much difficulty, I now thought there was

Ah, yes, dear Lord ! though all should fail,

To Thee my helpless soul would cleave; some prospect of succeeding, and immediately returned to consult with him. Not one of them,

Thy promises shall still prevailhowever, could be induced to move in the matter,

Thy people Thou wilt never leave! notwithstanding a tempting offer of cattle was Held in the hollow of Thine hand, inade. They had no idea of volunteering in this How oft the shafts of death have sped; service-if ordered by their chief, they said, they Thou canst my fiercest foe withstand, must go, but without such a command they would And shelter my defenceless head! not undertake it. Had not Gugu represented the undertaking as one of no great hazard in the way Thou art my hope-whate'er betide that they would manage it, I should not have My breath, my substance—all is Thine' urged the point, making it a rule never to require of Let but Thy name be glorified, others what I would not, if necessary, undertake And life itself I could resign. inyself. To attempt without guides my original plan, of riding through during the night, would Oh! if Thy presence go before, have been madness, especially as it required ex Then every path is smooth and plain ; cellent horses, and ours were none of the fleetest. And though it lead to Jordan's shore, Could fresh horses have been procured here, with 'Twill end in everlasting gain !

What rapture then to join that band, the expectation of having it ground and boiled on

Through fires of tribulation brought ! the road, was now, for want of this necessary preFor ever round the throne to stand,

paration, given to the jaded horses; one of whom Adoring Him our ransom bought! was so thoroughly knocked up, that in order to

urge him on at all it became necessary to secure No natives could be collected in the morning, the bridle to my saddle and literally take it in tow, but in the afternoon a few attended the Kafir ser- my interpreter occasionally dismounting and flog. vice in the mission-house.

ging it on. The locusts were so numerous in Monday, 10th.- In this weak and suspicious some parts of our journey this day, that the ground country, I thought it prudent to advise the good could scarcely be seen, and numbers were crushpeople at the Gümkūla of my intended return, and ed under the horses' feet. They are smaller than accordingly rode round by their huts, but either those generally seen in the Zoolu country, and by design or otherwise the Incosi-case was not have not the pink color on the wing. Delayed by forthcoming. After a little demur, Cheecha, an our sorry beasts, we did not reach Bunting till old man (reported to be a councillor) came up, and after sunset; and although much disappointed at to him I delivered a message to Ferdana, with a the necessity of retracing my steps, I felt thankful request that on his return he would either furnish at having again reached such comfortable quarters, me with a mounted guide to the Kei, or forward especially as we had tasted nothing since eight a letter to the English camp on the other side. o'clock on the previous morning, when we had The message he said should be delivered; but he breakfasted on Kafir-corn gruel. It was a proviwas quite sure nat Ferdana would do neither the dential circumstance that I did not partake of the one nor the other, as he was daily expecting an Kafir-corn in its raw state, as I had more than attack from the people of Chũngi; the Amamăias, once intended in the course of this day's ride ; who are in league with them, captured two herds having since learned that in all probability it would of cattle but the day before. They appear never have been fatal, as it has the property of swelling, to have forgiven the loss of some cattle taken from and even when not sufficiently boiled, is very prethem by the Machallas (the Amatembu tribe among | judicial: many instances, I am told, have occurred whom we now are,) as the escort were conveying when natives, exhausted by hunger on their warthe missionaries from Clarkebury across their ter- like expeditions, have died in a few hours after eatritory, about three months since; and it is no doubt ing a quantity of it improperly cooked. Found the in order to avenge this loss that they are now station in much concern respecting the melancholy combining against them.

tidings brought by the guides who arrived lasi As an evidence of the insincerity of these people, night. Both of the messengers who had been no less than seventeen or eighteen horses were killed on their way to the camp were much reobserved near Ferdana’s cattle-place, on the banks spected; and one of them, David, is said to have of the Bashee, as we passed; which at once con- been under deep religious impressions. Their firmed my opinion that the whole of his absence wives and families were in great grief. Previous was a deceit. On reaching Kăbi's to my great to starting, David had imprudently borrowed the disappointment, I found that the guides had return- panther-skin ingoobo (cloak) which had been given ed home the day before. It had been my endeavor to the last messenger on his reaching the British while at Clarkebury, to communicate with them, head-quarters: and it is said that this was recogbeing desirous that they should join me there; but nised by a party of Amakosa as having formerly notwithstanding all my efforts, with the promise belonged to one of their chiess, killed by the Engof beads, no person could be induced to undertake lish, and led to their discovery and consequent this errand. To procure a guide on the route was murder. My own guides, it appeared, had not out of the question ; for so uncivil were they at been very handsomely treated; their lives had every village we passed, that nothing, not even a been more than once threatened while remaining drop of milk could be procured. On leaving the at Kabi's village; and as they had heard nothing inhabited district, I had no other resource than from me for three days, they said they concluded to direct my course by the sun. After a tedious I had proceeded to the Kei, and were glad to leave ride, partly in the dark, we reached the Umtata, a country where they had all along been taken for and rested on the bank for the night; but, al. spies. though the cold was severe, I was unwilling to in Saturday, 15th.-With the hope of obtaining dulge in a fire, lest it might attract notice and bring some information respecting a route which I might down an armed party to disturb our repose. For be necessitated to take across the Quathlamba some time I endeavored to sleep; but at length, mountains, towards the north-eastern frontier of almost benumbed, determined at all risks to kindle the colony, I crossed the Umzimvoobo on Thursday, a blaze. Observing a deep fissure where the to Mr. Fynn's village, about twenty-six miles disflame might be sufficiently concealed, we repaired tant from hence, and returned last night. The thither; but, although a tolerable fire was kept remains of that immense and extirpating horde, led up throughout the remainder of the night, it was on by the celebrated Matuāna ;-and who, from but little sleep that I could obtain, the air being their unsparing ferocity, have obtained the name keen and the ground covered with frost. of Fitcani (destroyers)—are still to be found in

Tuesday, 11th.-Finding that I had made the almost every district of this part of the continent river at a point considerably higher than the usual their battle-ground having extended quite across ford, I this morning shaped a most easterly course; to the very embouchure of the Orange river. It the whole country to the Umgäzi being a com was from some of these people that I was anxious plete wilderness without an inhabitant. A small to obtain an account of the country to the westward, bundle of Kafir-corn brought from Clarkebury, with and a promise of assistance, should I attempt the

mountains in that direction. All agreed in the to be often so swollen after this dreadful infliction opinion that it would be impracticable, as the ridges as to appear scarcely human. If found guilty, were so unbroken and perpendicular, that even a they are only released to be beaten to death with footpath could not be effected without making knobbed sticks and stones. Accounts have just many tedious circuits ; during the course of which been received of some spies from Kheeli (son of their companions had been frequently lost, and the late Hinza) having traversed the country, many perished from extreme cold on gaining the from which I have just returned, in their way summit.

to one of the upper branches of the Umzimvoobo;

where, it is said, a part of his tribe have an intenSunday, 16th.

tion of removing on the advance of the English

troops. It is a providential circumstance that we “Do this in remembrance of me.”—(Luke xxii. 19.) did not fall in with them, as they are reported to

have been well armed and mounted, and are not What a hateful thing is sin !

likely to have spared two Englishmen who were How it steals the heart away;

defenceless. Though subdued—it leaves within

Although the Amapondas are a mild and hosA poison, death alone can stay ;

pitable people, some of their customs would indiIt dims the eye of faith, and chille

cate the utmost degree of barbarity. It is usual The love that oft our bosom fills.

for the ruling chief, on his accession to the govern

ment, to be washed in the blood of a near relative, Could we otherwise refrain

generally a brother, who is put to death on the From weeping when he heard Him say;— occasion, and his skull used as a receptacle for his « Remember me who once was slain blood. Fakū would have undergone this horrid To wash your guilty stains away.” libation, had not his brother Gwingi

, whose turn Should we so oft mementos need

it was, according to the rules prescribed, made his To think of such a Friend indeed.

escape to a neighboring tribe. For some time

after a diligent search was made for his person, What is all our love compared

and he has never since thoroughly recovered from To that which Jesus has bestowed? the exposure and hardships which he endured In all our sorrows he has shared,

while lying so long concealed from his merciless For us his precious blood has flowed ! pursuers. In consequence of the Christian reCan we behold that wond'rous sight monstrances of Mr. Tainton, he was at length And not our thankless bosoms smite ? suffered to return; and Fakū has allowed the

horrid practice, as regards himself, to go into deKindle, O Lord! a heavenly flame, suetude, which, for the sake of humanity, it is to

Within my heart thy grace impart; be hoped will never again be revived. The palI would confess with deepest shame liative sanction of custom cannot, however, be

The coldness of my lukewarm heart. admitted in the case of Umyåki, now an indepenOh! let me ever mindful be

dent Amaponda chief, residing near the coast in Of Him whose blood was shed for me. the direction of Morley. Having defeated a party

of Amatembu, who had attacked him in his own Be this my boast while life shall last, country, Gallăka, the son of an inferior chief, fell

Redeeming grace and dying love ; into his hands a prisoner. On his being brought Then when this pilgrimage is past,

to Umyăki, he immediately despatched him with In realms of endless joy, above,

his own band, and then ordered his heart and liver My rapturous song wili ceaseless be, to be boiled, with the broth of which, poured into My Saviour has remembered me!

his skull, he caused himself to be washed. This,

however, is regarded, even by the natives themConducted the Kafir services morning and selves, as an unusual act of barbarity, and has afternoon.

given great offence to all the neighboring chiefs ; Tuesday, 18th. The affection from which Fakū still, in both instances, as well as in the more gehas lately been suffering in his eyes has, as usual, neral custom of drinking the gall of their enemies, been attributed to witchcraft. Since I last saw (practised, I believe, exclusively among the chiefs,) him, he has allowed himself to be punctured the object mainly in view is the acquisition, as above the eye-brow by a witch doctor, who pre- they imagine, of additional bodily strength. But tended to extract from the opening a small quan- even these are nothing when compared with the tity of snuff, which he declared had been placed various and wanton inflictions of their witch docthere by an enemy, and had occasioned the dis- tors, many of which are revolting in the extreme. ease. The inflammation, relieved by the opera- About three years ago one of these diabolical tion, has since gradually subsided; and the alleged agents (not, as it is said, without some color of Umtakati (bewitcher) is already in confinement. ancient sanction,) perpetrated the following act in In order to extort confession, it is not an unusual order to propitiate success for Faku's army, then method to pinion the accused individual to the on the eve of taking the field. He directed that ground with forked stakes, with the head resting the fore-leg of a living bull should be cut off at the in an ant-hill; the body is then strewed over with shoulder, and then ordered the men with their the debris of ants'-nests taken from the trees, teeth to tear the flesh from the reeking limb and while water is dashed upon them in order to ex- devour it on the spot, while the tortured animal cite the insects to bite more sharply. The tor- was left to a cruel and lingering death. The acture must be extreme, as the whole body is said quisition of cattle is the grand incitive to war

among all the tribes in this part of Africa; and peace of any long duration is only to be expected by those who, like the Bushmen, are unencumbered with this description of property. The elysium of a native is to be enabled to drink abundance of sour milk without fear or molestation; and, although his country may abound with corn, he keenly feels the want of this favorite beverage. The Amapondas having suffered so severely in their wars with Charka, have, in consequence, become great beer

drinkers; and even now that they are gradually recovering their losses by the increase of their cattle, still I fear this baneful habit, induced by the scarcity of milk, is likely to be of long continuance. When reproached for their frequent inebriety, (for they often meet in large parties, and drink until they are stupified) they archly reply, “What can we do?we have no cattle—this is our milk." Even Fakū himself is not free from this reproach ; and is said to have been frequently found sealed in a torpor induced by outchùalla. This morning I received a note from Mr. Fynn, informing me of his ill success in endeavoring to procure guides for the inland route from among Tpai's people, or a messenger who would venture across with a letter to the camp. As a dernier resort I rode over to the Great Place with the hope of inducing Fakū to assist me with his army; but, unfortunately, he was in one of his stupors, and laid on the ground at full length, surrounded by many of his people, during the greater part of the time I was there, scarcely conscious of any thing that was passing. On my return, I stopped a short time at a neighboring village belonging to Damăs, Faku's eldest son, in order to witness a dance which was taking place in honor of one of his sisters about to be married to Tpai, several of whose people were present on the occasion. This kind of performance is very inferior to that of the Zoolus ; the men, holding short knob. bed sticks in their hands, were arranged three deep in a semicircle; the women, as usual, occupying a compact group before them. The song was not in parts, as among the Zoolus, but often strangely broken by the whole of the men suddenly seating themselves on the ground, and then as abruptly rising and going on with the tune; while the women during the whole time were straining their voices, jumping and clapping their hands by way of accompaniment. As they had already been some time engaged in this violent exercise, much of the ochres—red, white, and yellow—with which their faces were besmeared, had disappeared; enough was, however, remaining to render them sufficiently hideous. The men were generally decorated with the tail-hair of their cattle, tied round the calf of the leg and on their arms, which gave them a very wild and



ferocious appearance. Many, both men and wo- the various tribes that would oppose him at every men, wore large ivory rings, (always a very be- step of the road; that he was fearful that some coming ornament,) on the upper part of the arm; harm might happen to me; and, in fact, acknowshell bracelets, (white, with black streaks,) with ledged that he was himself opposed to the measure. one or more panther's teeth suspended round the On hearing this, it was in vain to say more than to neck, were also worn by some of the men ; while assure him that, if he would sanction the attempt, many of the ladies, in addition to their other em. I was quite willing to accompany them. The bellishments, had their hair twisted into lank and chiefs by this time had crowded round, each evimop-like ringlets, and the whole thickly plastered dently prepared to give his opinion, which, from with red ochre.

all I have since heard, would have been quite at Fakü himself is utterly regardless of every des- variance with that of their ruler ; but, as his word cription of personal ornament; with his ivory is law, not a dissentient voice was heard; and snuff-spoon stuck in his hair, and his reed snuff after a few observations in which Fakū begged it box in his ear,* he is dressed, with the exception might be understood that the decision he had of a leopard-skin mantle occasionally thrown over made was not with any unfriendly feeling towards his shoulders or gathered round his waist. It this the English, as he belonged to the same Great respect he is a perfect contrast to Dingarn, and House, we took our leave. The real fact I believe only deigns to wear beads when he joins in the to be, that Tpai could not be induced to unite his dance.

forces with those of the Amapondas : for, notwithFriday, 21sl.-Fakü having signified his wish standing the pending family alliance between to see me on the subject of my late proposal, I Fakū and him, these people are naturally so jeawent this morning by appointment to the Great lous of each other, that any long continuance of Place, accompanied by IIr. Tainton and my in- cordiality, is not to be relied upon; and even had terpreter, and was soon after joined by Mr. Fynn. they taken the field together, some dispute might On our approach, Fakū was observed to come probably have arisen whereby the two parties from his hut and stretch himself at full length un- might have been arrayed against each other. der the shade of a low thorn bush, near the cat- Were Fakü in person to head his army, they would tle-fold, a short distance from a group of his prin- be sufficient for any practicable enterprise, but cipal people seated on the ground. He gave his this he has not done for years; they are generally hand to each as we took our stations near, but led on by one of his sons, but neither they nor any not a syllable was uttered relating to the business of the inferior chiefs have sufficient influence to on which we were expressly met to consult. At control the whole, so that his army is composed of length I inquired whether he had been informed a number of almost independent chiefs with their of what I had said when I saw him last, on which different clans acting generally in concert, but he requested me to repeat what had then been without any acknowledged head. This circumstated, as he had only heard it through his people. stance at once accounts for the ill-success which The proposed plan I told him was this, to collect has almost invariably attended every expedition his army, and, in combination with that of Tpai, which has carried them to any distance beyond the to make a sudden and rapid march to the Kei

, limits of their own country. "It may here perhaps without turning to the right hand or to the left, be as well to explain, that, in consequence of the and only opposing those who actually obstructed total absence of all correct intelligence from the his progress. That by doing this they would take scene of action, as also from any part of the the country by surprise, none of the tribes through colony in which for months we had been kept, it which they would pass would have an idea of their was fully believed that the war had not terminatdestination, much less would they have time to ed with the Kafirs. Had I at this time been aware combine in order to oppose their advance. On of the actual state of affairs on the colonial fronreaching the English troops they would meet tier, a proposition of the nature just alluded to with the most friendly reception, and they would would never have been made to Fakü; but considoubtless escort them on their way back as far as dering the importance of speedily communicating they pleased.

with the government on the affairs of Port Natal, Faka then stated his own plan, which was first I felt myself justified in the adoption of these to make an attack upon Umyaki, and the other means, though feeling deeply the necessity of castpetty chiefs with whom he was at war in the ing to such a quarter for assistance. My progress to neighborhood of the Umtata, and clear his way as the colony in this direction seems now completely far as the Bashee, after which his army could obstructed; especially as a party of Amapondas, again go out and open a road to the Kei. This I in revenge for some real or pretended wrong, told him would be the very way to increase the have lately captured cattle, and fired some houses difficulty; that he would not only weaken his own belonging to Cosiana. Little did I imagine on forces, but cause his enemies to combine in greater leaving Port Natal that I should so soon be obnumbers; that there was but one plan which of- liged to retrace my steps; this, however, appears fered any probability of ultimate success, and that to be the only probable means of eventually prosewas to make a rapid movement through the coun- cuting my journey, especially as accounts have ly directly along the wagon road to the Kei; and just been received of a vessel having lately appear. that he would be sure to fail if he attempted it in ed off the Umcāmas apparently standing towards any other way. Fako then pleaded his want of the port. On my return to Bunting I obtained strength; that his army was unequal to cope with a distant view of a remarkable rock which rises

like a fortress among a very broken range of • A large perforation is made in the ear for this mountains on the right; so scarped and precipi. purpose, and is characteristic of the nation.

tous are the approaches to this insulated craz,

« AnteriorContinuar »