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the performance of their duties, the subject of a work wherewith to entertain the world, or fill the writer's pocket. It is in vain that he may plead the excellence of his design, the purity of his morality, or the orthodoxy of his religion, as exemplified in his delineation, in extenuation of his conduct. Good the work cannot do, from the mixture which we have adverted to. Evil it may work, from the feeling of contempt which it is likely to produce towards the order, one of whose professors, like the author of “the Living and the Dead," shows himself to be gossiping, tasteless, and we fear, with more of piety on his lips than in his heart.
After these harsh remarks, we have no hesitation in saying, that, independently of this feeling which we have expressed, because we entertained it, the Living and the Dead is a book of very considerable interest, and would more than agreeably amuse a leisure hour. The chapter on “ Sermonizing" is a humorous exposition of some of the resources of churchmen in preaching; and had it been written by a layman, we should have hailed its appearance with very great pleasure, as unexceptionable in matter, style, and object.
The next is entitled Mr. Benson, and is a sketch of the celebrated Rector of St. Giles. This is not liable to the objections made against the last, as it would perhaps be too punctilious to remonstrate against one clergyman showing up another, whether for praise or blame. “Love Matches” is a very pretty chapter, and is strongly recommended to the perusal of the selfish animals of the present day, who are designated by the name of “ young men." It may perhaps call back to their minds some of the tenderness and generosity of feeling which did occasionally inspire the breasts of the youths who were our contemporaries. The world may be much wiser, but it is certainly much more interested. “ The Wages of Sin,” and “ the “ Leading Idea,” are both good in their way; but the next,“ Joanna “ Baillie," again arouses our wrath. What right has any one to publish his reminiscences or observations upon living personages ?-to make them ridiculous, in the eyes of the public, by detailing the caprices, or the singularities of their tempers, manners, and dispositions of circumstances. The mania for private scandal is strong enough in all conscience without a clergyman setting the example of narrating facts or observations glanced in the familiarities of private intercourse. The Medwins of the day we abominate ; and we shall not fail to mark with a brand, those who are guilty of this tattling sin, though we despair of checking the evil. It is founded in the corrupted taste of the times; but once more we say, a clergyman should not pander to the gratification of the polluted appetite.
“ The sorrows of a rich old Man,” are very entertaining; but annexed to them we find another of those unjustifiable exposures of private families, in an account of some circumstances connected with Lady Byron. This has, as usual, been extracted by the regular vehicles of administering slander-the daily papers, and has called forth an indignant remonstrance from some of the parties affected. We therefore say no more, in reprobation of the author's conduct,
than to observe, that we suppose after all, it will be to these little bits of gossip to which his work will chiefly owe its success. We regret this the more, as there are few works recently published, which have otherwise given us so much gratification. To those who are not possessed of our scruples, “the Living and the Dead" will be a volume more than usually fascinating. Narrative of a Survey of the Intertropical and Western Coast of
Australia, performed between the years 1818 and 1822, by Captain Phillip P. King, R. N. &c. &c. in 2 vols. illustrated by plates, charts, and wood cuts.-.-Murray.
Books of travels are always valuable, even if they are not very interesting, for it does sometimes happen, even in this age, when so many exist who succeed in writing about nothing; there are still some few who continue to make even the most spirit-stirring occurrences dull and vapid by their manner of narrating them. Captain King is not one of these.—He had a plain tale to tell of the expedition upon which he was employed, and he tells it well and manfully. There is no attempt at fine writing in his volumes, every thing is clear, straitforward, and intelligible; and his narrative of the voyage does him almost as much credit as the spirit and perseverance with which his plain account makes it evident that he conducted it; and those who take it up for the purpose, either of instruction or amusement, will meet with ample gratification.
A good, and apparently minutely correct chart of the coast which Captain King surveyed, accompanies the book, which is further decorated by some very pretty engravings; one in particular (vol. I. p. 169), a view up the River Hastings, at its junction with King's River, is very beautiful, and would form an admirable subject of a scene at one of the great theatres for one of the more elegant species of melodramatic pantomime. The scenery delineated in it is highly pleasing and romantic, and is just such a place where we should expect to see a fairy bark, conducted by swans gracefully floating, and bearing in it one of those lovely creatures of which Miss Foote, in her better days, was so charming a representative.
The title conveys as much information respecting the object of the work as we can afford room for. The adventures which Captain King and his companions met with, are better fitted for the purpose of giving an idea of it, and they do not seem to have been few, owing to the barbarous state of the Aborigines which he met with in exploring the coasts. The following adventure met* with by Mr. Roe, (the son of the Rector of Newbury) from whom Captain King derived no inconsiderable assistance, is a trifling specimen of " the fears all, and
cares all,” that visit the bold mariners who engage in such adventures.
• We were much amused with the pompous manner in which the worthy Captain relates his naming the various bays, creeks, capes, &c. He has duly honored all the great men of his acquaintance, and it is but fair to state that he has by no means forgotten his friends, e. g. “ Two flat-topped hills were named Mounts Bedwell and Roe, " after the two midshipmen who accompanied me."
"On the following day, when our people resumed their occupation, they were again cautioned not to trust to the apparent absence of the natives. In the afternoon Mr. Roe walked along the beach with his gun in quest of birds ; on his way he met Mr. Hunter returning from a walk, in which he had encountered no recent signs of the Indians. This information emboldened Mr. Roe to wander farther than was prudent, and in the mean time Mr. Hunter returned to our party in order to go on board; he had, however, scarcely reached our station, when the report of a musket and Mr. Roe's distant shooting were heard. The people immediately seized their arms and hastened to his relief, and by this prompt conduct probably saved his life.
* It appeared that, after parting from Mr. Hunter, he left the beach and pursued his walk among the trees; he had not proceeded more than fifty yards when he fired at a bird : he was cautious enough to reload before he moved from the spot in search of his game, but this was scarcely done before a boomerang wizzed past his head, and struck a tree close by with great force. Upon looking round towards the verge of the cliff, which was about twenty yards off, he saw several natives; who, upon finding they were discovered, set up a loud and savage yell, and threw another boomerang and several spears at him, all of which providentially missed. Emboldened by their numbers and by his apparent defenceless situation, they were following up the attack by a nearer' approach, when he fired amongst them, and, for a moment, stopped their advance. Mr. Roe's next care was to reload, but to bis extreme mortification and dismay he found his cartouch-box had turned round in the belt, and every cartridge had dropped out: being thus deprived of his ammunition, and having no other resource left but to make his escape, he turned round, and ran towards the beach ; at the same time shouting loudly, to apprize our people of his danger. He was now pursued by three of the natives, whilst the rest ran along the cliff to cut off his retreat
“ On his reaching the edge of the water, he found the sand so soft that at every step his feet sunk three or four inches, which so distressed him and impeded his progress, that he must soon have fallen overpowered with fatigue, had not the sudden appearance of our people, at the same time that it inspired him with fresh hopes of escape, arrested the progress of the natives, who, after throwing two or three spears without effect, stopped, and gave him time to join our party, quíte spent with the extraordinary effort he had made to save his life.
“ Whilst this event occurred, I was employed on board in constructing my rough chart, but upon Mr. Roe's being seen from the deck in the act of running along the beach pursued by the Indians, I hastened on shore, determined, if possible, to punish them for such unprovoked hostility. Upon landing, Mr. Hunter, Mr. Roe, and one of the men joined me in pursuit of the natives; but, from our comparatively slow movements, and our ignorance of the country, we returned after an hour without having seen any signs of them; in the evening, before our people left off work, we made another circuitous walk, but with the same bad success. The natives had taken the alarm, and nothing more was seen of them during the remainder of our stay, excepting the smokes of their fires, which appeared over the trees at the back of the island.
" Previous to this attack upon Mr. Roe, the natives had probably been following Mr. Hunter; and were, doubtless, deterred from attacking him, by witnessing the destructive effects of his gun among a flight of cockatoos, five or six of which he brought away, and left as many more hopping about the grass wounded, and making the woods re-echo with their screams. When Mr. Hunter parted from Mr. Roe, the natives remained to watch the latter gentleman; and no sooner had he discharged his gun, which they found was of no use until it was reloaded, than they commenced their attack; and from the known dexterity of the natives of this country in throwing the spear, it was not a little surprising that they missed him so repeatedly.
“ Before we embarked for the night, I walked with Mr. Roe to the place where he was attacked, in order to look for the spears that had been thrown at him, and for the cartridges he had lost; but as neither were found, we were revengeful enough to hope that the natives would burn their fingers with the powder, an event not at all unlikely to occur, from their ignorance of the dangerous effect of placing the cartridges near the fire, which they would be sure to do.”
Mr. Roe had a genius for getting into serapes. In the second volume we meet with the following narrative.
Upon reaching Cairncross Island, under which it was my intention to anchor, the sails were reduced ; and, as we were in the act of letting go the anchor, Mr. Roe, who was at the mast-head holding thoughtlessly by the fore-topmast staysailhalliards, whilst the sail was being hauled down, was precipitated from a height of fifty feet, and fell senseless on the deck. We were now close to the reef; and in the hurry and confusion attending the accident, and the Dick at the same time luffing-up under our stern, the anchor was dropped, without my ascertaiving the quality of the bottom, which was afterwards found to be of a very questionable nature,
“ The Dick having dropped her anchor within forty yards of us, was lying so close as to prevent our veering more cable than sixty fathoms; but as we appeared to ride tolerably easy with a sheer to starboard, while the Dick rode on the opposite sheer, we remained as we were: to prevent accident, the yards were braced so that we should cast clear of the Dick if we parted, a precaution which was most happily taken.
“ As soon as the distressing accident that had occurred was known on board the Dick, Dr. Armstrong, a surgeon of the navy, and a passenger in that ship, hastened on board to assist Mr. Montgomery in dressing Mr. Roe's hurt, which I found, to my inexpressible satisfaction, was not so grievous as might have been expected : his fall was most providentially broken twice; first by the spritsail brace, and secondly by some planks from the Frederick's wreck, which had fortunately been placed across the forecastle bulwark over the cat-heads : his head struck the edge of the plank, and broke his fall, but it cut a very deep wound over the right temple. This unfortunate event threatened to deprive me of his very valuable assistance for some time, a loss I could but very ill spare, particularly when upon the point of returning to the examination of so intricate a coast as that part where we last left off.'
One of the dangers of untried navigation is thus strikingly exemplified.
" It was my intention to have brought up under the lea of the point, where Dampier describes his having anchored in twenty-nine fathoms clear sandy ground; but, upon rounding the projection, the wind suddenly fell, and after a light squall from S. W., we had a dead calm ; the depth was thirty fathoms coral buttom, and therefore not safe to anchor upon ; this was unfortunate, for the sudden defection of the wind prevented our hauling into the bay out of the tide, which was evidently running with considerable rapidity, and drifting us, without our having the means of preventing it, towards a cluster of small rocks and islands, through which we could not discover any outlet, and which were so crowded, that in the dangerous predicament in which we found ourselves placed, they bore a truly awful aud terrific appearance. At this time I was at my usual post, the mast-head, directing the steerage of the vessel ; but, as the brig was drifting forward by a rapid sluice of tide towards some low rocks, about a quarter of a mile off, that were not more than two feet above the water's edge, and upon which it appeared almost inevitable that we must strike, I descended to the deck, under the certain conviction that we could not escape the dangers that were strewed across our path, unless a breeze should spring up, of which there was not the slightest appearance or probability.
Happily, however, the stream of the tide swept us past the rocks without accident, and after carrying us about half a mile farther, changed its direction to south-east, and drifted us towards a narrow strait, separating two rocky islands, in the centre of which was a large insulated rock that seemed to divide the stream. The boat was now hoisted out and sent a-bead to tow, but we could not succeed in getting the vessel's head round. As she approached the strait, the channel became much narrower, and several islands were passed, at not more than thirty yards from her course, The voices of natives were now heard, and soon afterwards some were seen on either side of the straight, hallooing and waving their arms; we were so near VOL. II.
to one party, that they might have thrown their spears on board ; they had a dog with them, which Mr. Cunningham remarked to be black. By this time, we were flying past the shore with such velocity, that it made us quite giddy ; and our situation was too awful to give us time to observe the motions of the Indians ; for we were entering the narrowest part of the strait, and the next moment were close to the rock, which it appeared to be almost impossible to avoid ; and it was more than probable that the stream it divided would carry'us broadside upon it, when the consequences would have been truly dreadful; the current, or sluice, was setting past the rock at the rate of eight or nine knots, and the water being confined by its intervention, fell at least six or seven feet; at the moment, however, when we were upon the point of being dashed to pieces, a sudden breeze providentially sprung up, and, filliug our sails, impelled the vessel forward for three or four yards ;---this was enough, but only just sufficient, for the rudder was not more than six yards from the rock. No sooner had we passed this frightful danger, than the breeze fell again, and was succeeded by a dead calm ; the tide, however, continued to carry us on with a gradually decreasing strength, until one o'clock, when we felt very little effect from it."
The results of the voyage are summed up at the conclusion, and will not be found uninteresting, as they certainly are not unimportant.
" It may not be covsidered irrelevant here to make a few brief observations upon what has been effected by these voyages, and what yet remains to be done upon the northern coasts of Australia. Beginning with the north-eastern coast, I have been enabled to lay down a very safe and convenient track for vessels bound through Torres' Strait, and to delineate the coast line between Cape Hillsborough, in 209 54' S, and Cape York, the north extremity of New South Wales ; a distance of six hundred and ninety miles. As my instructions did not authorize my delaying to examine any part of this coast, I could not penetrate into the many numerous and extensive openings that presented themselves in this space ; particularly in the neighbourhoods of Capes Gloucester, Upstart, and Cleveland ; where the intersected and broken appearances of the hills at the back are matters of interesting inquiry and research.
“ My instructions at first confined me between Cape Arnhem and the Northwest Cape, but were subsequently extended to the western coast. The examination of the northern and part of the north-western coasts, from Wessel Islands to Port George the Fourth, a distance of seven hundred and ninety miles, has been carefully made, and, with a few exceptions, every opening has been explored. Those parts in this interval that yet require examination, are some inlets on the south side of Clarence Strait, and one of more considerable size to the eastward of Cambridge Gulf, trending in to the south-east: otherways, the coast comprised within these limits has been sufficiently examined for all the purposes of navigation.
“ The coast also between the North-west Cape and Depuch Island, containing two hundred and twenty miles, has also been sufficiently explored ; but between the latter island and Port George the Fourth, a distance of five hundred and ten miles, it yet remains almost unknown. The land that is laid down is nothing more than an archipelago of islands fronting the main land, the situation of which is quite uncertain. Our examinations of these islands were carried on as far as Cape Villaret, but between that and Depuch Island the coast has only been seen by the French, who merely occasionally saw small detached portions of it. At present, however, all is conjecture ; but the space is of cousiderable extent, and if there is an opening into the interior of New Holland, it is in the vicinity of this part. Of the Buccaneer's Archipelago, the tides are strong, and rise to the height of thirtysix feet. Whatever may exist behind these islands, which we were prevented by our poverty in anchors and other circumstances from exploring, there are certainly some openings of importance; and it is not at all improbable that there may be a communication at this part with the interior for a considerable distance from the coast.