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natives were seen washing their faces, and in a few moments one was recognised as Tommy Button, Jemmy's brother. .“ In the other canoe,” says Captain Fitzroy, " was a face which I knew, yet could not name. • It must be some one I have seen before,' said I, when his sharp eye detected me, and a sudden movement of his hand to his head (as a sailor touches his hat), at once told me it was indeed Jemmy Button !-but how altered! I could hardly restrain my feelings : and I was not by any means the only one so touched by his squalid, miserable appearance. He was naked, like his companions, except a bit of skin about his loins ; his hair was long and matted, just like theirs ; he was wretchedly thin, and his eyes were affected by smoke. We hurried him below, clothed him immediately, and in half an hour he was sitting with me at dinner in my cabin, using his knife and fork properly, and in every way behaving as correctly as if be had never left us. He spoke as much English as ever; and, to our astonishment, his companions, his wife, his brothers and their wives, mixed broken English words in their talking with him.* Jemmy recollected every one well, and was very glad to see them all, especially Mr. Bynoe (surgeon), and James Bennet (cockswain). I thought he was ill, but he surprised me, by saying that he was ‘Hearty, sir; never better (a former saying of his), that he had not been ill, even for a day, was happy and contented, and had no wish whatever to change his way of life. He said that he got • plenty fruits' (fungi and berries), plenty birdies,' “ ten guanaes in snow time, and too much fish. Besides, though he said nothing about her, I soon found that there was a goodlooking (for a Fuegian) young woman in his canoe, who was said to be his wife. Directly this became known, shawls, handkerchiefs, and a gold-laced cap appeared, with which she was speedily decorated ; but fears had been excited for her husband's safe return to her, and no finery could stop her crying until Jemmy again showed himself on deck. While he was below, his brother Tommy called out in a loud tone, ‘Jemmy Button, canae come!' After some time the three canoes went ashore, laden with presents, and their owners promised to come again early next morning. Jemmy gave a fine otter-skin to me, which he had dressed and kept purposely; another he gave to Bennett.”
York and Fuegia, it appeared, had left some months before the arrival of the Beagle, and went in a large canoe to their own country. The last act of that cunning fellow was, to rob poor Jemmy of all his clothes ; nearly all the tools of which his Tekeenica “ friends” had not deprived him, and various other necessaries. Fuegia was dressed as usual, and looking well when they decamped : her helpmate was also well clothed, and had hardly lost any thing left with him. Jemmy said, “ York very much jaw,” « pick up big stones,” “all men afraid." Fuegia seemed to be very happy, and quite contented with her lot. Jemmy asserted, that she helped to “ catch (steal) his clothes” while he was asleep, the night before York left him naked.
Not long after the departure of the Beagle in the former year, the Oensmen (a tribe of Tekeenica, living beyond the mountains on the north side of the Beagle channel), came in numbers, overland, to Woollya ; obliged Jemmy's tribe to escape to the small island, and carried off every valuable which his party had not time to remove. They had, doubtless, heard of the newly-acquired property there, and hastened to seize upon it like other “ borderers.” Until that time, York had
appeared to be settled and quite at ease; but he had been employed
The Fuegians, however, who were taken to England, were found to be much slower in learoing English eban was expected, from the quickness of their nation in mimicry.
about a suspiciously large canoe, just finished when the inroad was made. He saved his canoe, in which indeed he escaped from the marauders, and afterwards induced Jemmy and his family to accompany him, and “look at his land.” They went together in four canoes (York's large one and three others) as far west as Devil's Island, at the junctions of the north-west and south-west arms of the Beagle channel, where they met York's brother, and some others of the Alikhoolip tribe; and while Jemmy was asleep, all the Alikhoolip party stole off, taking nearly all Jemmy's things, and leaving him in his original condition. Captain Fitzroy feels quite sure, that from the time of York changing his mind, and desiring to be placed at Woollya, he meditated this robbery. Since this last depredation, Jemmy and his people had abandoned Woollya for his own island.
Thus ended Captain Fitzroy's humane attempt at civilizing Tierra del Fuego! It was, however, generally remarked, that Jemmy's family were become considerably more humanized than any savages that had been seen in the country—that the first step towards civilization had been made. “I cannot,” says Captain Fitzroy, “belp hoping that some benefit, however slight, may result from the intercourse of these people, Jemmy, York, and Fuegia, with other natives of Tierra del Fuego. Perhaps a shipwrecked seaman may hereafter receive help and kind treatment from Jemmy Button's children; prompted, as they can hardly fail to be, by the traditions they will have heard of men of other lands; and by an idea, however faint, of their duty to God as well as to their neighbour."
Besides the two other skins which Jemmy had preserved and presented to Captain Fitzroy and James Bennett, he sent a bow and quiver of arrows to the schoolmaster at Walthamstow, with whom he had lived, and made two spear-heads expressly for Mr. Darwin.
As, with Captain Fitzroy's limited means, nothing now could be done in the furtherance of his noble project, leave was taken of Jemmy and his family, every one of whom was loaded with presents; and the Beagle finally sailed away from Woollya, to continue the object of the expedition.
As it was not our intention of following the expedition in its various explorations, and having merely limited ourselves to Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, and their inhabitants, those of our readers who may be desirous of more minute particulars on this subject, or of becoming acquainted with the other discoveries and remarks of Captains King and Fitzroy, and Mr. Darwin, are referred to the work itself, which will amply repay the time occupied in perusal, affording an inexhaustible fund of instruction and amusement to all intelligent and reflective minds.
BY THE OLD FOREST RANGER.
“ lle came, he went, like the simoom,
That harbinger of fate and gloom."-Byrox.
On the banks of the river Cauvery stands one of those mean-looking villages, which occur, at intervals of a few miles, throughout the greater part of the Mysore country, a small mud fort, long since dismantled, and now almost concealed by jungle, overlooked a sluggish stream, whose dark waters lazily licked the crumbling walls. The snow-white egret and the stately crane waded amongst the shallows, with their long
necks outstretched, in attitudes of intense watchfulness. The scaly alligator lay basking on the half-covered sandbanks, and the Brahming kite hovered above the reeds, uttering its querulous note, as its bright chestnut wings quivered in the level beams of the setting sun. Herds of sluggish buffaloes, their bare black hides plastered with mud, were slowly returning from their pasture, a sunburnt urchin perched upon the back of the most docile, shouted at the top of his voice a wild recitativo, addressed to his charge, who responded by deep surly grunts. The shrill cry of the wild peacock, perched upon the ruined battlements of the fort, was answered by his mate from the rank thicket underneath. And the soft cooing of the turtle dove whispered among the mango-leaves. As evening advanced, the huge vampire-bats, which hung in clusters suspended by their hinder claws from the drooping branches of the banyan-trees, dropped, one by one, and glided silently away in search. of food. Labourers, with their black blankets hanging over their shoulders, came in straggling parties from the fields, driving their bullocks before them: and the women returned from the wells in picturesque, groups, each supporting with one hand an earthen jar of antique form, gracefully balanced on her head; whilst the jingling sounds of the bangles which encircled their ankles, made music to their light elastic step. Such was the peaceful scene, as evening closed upon that lonely village.
But at intervals, a wild startling shout would come booming on the breeze, and ere its falling notes had died away, the cry was taken up, and continued from an opposite quarter. This was the shikar*-cry of the Mysore woodsman; and, to an Indian sportsman, told its tale. A jungle village on the banks of a river, is generally haunted by a tiger; if there be a ruined fort, overgrown with grass and brushwood, such probability is much increased—and whenever the woodcutter returns hurriedly at sunset, shouting that ominous holla, the chances are, that a tiger dogs his steps.
The sun had set, and the shades of night were fast approaching, as Rung Row, the venerated priest of the village, strode along the banks of the river to a convenient spot for making his evening ablutions. He Continued from No.ccxxii., page 218.
+ Shikar, hunting.
returned with dignified condescension the salutations humbly offered by each Ryat whom he met, and proceeded on wrapped in his own media, tations. Little thought the proud Brahmin, as he pondered over the probable success of his last project in priestly craft, that he was not doomed to reap its fruits.
At a winding of the river, less than a quarter of a mile from the village was a little bay, sheltered from observation by some aloe-bushes. The water was not too deep; and soft sand, pleasant for the foot to tread, shelved gradually into a clear pool.
“Here shall I enjoy a refreshing bath,” thought the luxurious priest, “ and then shall the antelope-eyed Luxshmee welcome me to her arms."
Having no clothes to encumber him, save a cotton wrapper round his Joins, the devout worshipper of Vishnoo waded at once into the stream, muttering a prayer at every step, and commenced the important ceremony of ablution, by pouring water, from a small brass vessel, over his shaven crown and well-oiled skin.
What rustle was that ?-The Brahmin's ears heard not, they were stunned by the cold stream which poured over them. His eyes, too, were closed, else would he have seen two bright green orbs, glaring fiercely upon him, through the branches of an aloe-bush at his side. His hour had come, for the famous Man-eater of Shikarpoor was upon his trail. Her eye had rested on her victim, and she thirsted for his, blood. Her grim head was cautiously thrust through the bushes, and the striped monster issued from her lair with stealthy tread. Dragging, her belly along the sand, her tail switching impatiently, her ears laid flat upon her neck, and her whiskered lips drawn back, so as to expose her formidable array of tusks, she crept silently to the brink of the water, there, gathering herself together, she glared for one moment on the devoted wretch like a triumphant fiend, and bounding forward, threw herself upon him with a roar, which thrilled through his guilty soul, and drowned the death-shriek which he uttered in his agonystruggle there was none—the paw of the tigress fell like a bar of iron upon his skull, crushing it to the brain, and her powerful teeth met in his throat. Death was almost instantaneous—a senseless body hung quivering in her grasp, as she turned to the shore, but she still shook it with ferocious energy, and buried her tusks deeper still, as it throbbed. at the last convulsive gasp.
This fearful death had been the fate of many a poor Ryat and woodcutter belonging to the village, for the tigress had haunted it during several months. Their fate created little sensation—they were only Soodras;* but when a herd-boy, who had witnessed this tragedy, ran to the village screaming, Bhag! Bhag !+ and announced that the Man-eater was supping on the holy carcass of a Brahmin priest, the holy brotherhood were roused from their apathy into a state of keen excitement. Women ran about beating their breasts, and howling their national lament, and the village resounded with the dismal cries of Wha! Wha! Bhag! Bhag!
After a decent indulgence in strenuous demonstrations of grief, the Ameldarf despatched a peon to summon Bhurmah, the principal Shikarie of the village. In a few minutes he was dragged by the officious policeman, as if he were a criminal, into the great man's presence, and abused, with that despotic disregard of right and wrong, which ever accompanies an Asiatic's possession of power.
* A low caste of the Hindoos. + A tiger. A native magistrate of a district.
Bhurmah was one of the most noted Shikaries of that province ; his whole life had been spent in watching beasts of prey; but the dreaded tigress of Shikarpoor' had as yet baffled him; and now that she had killed a Brahmin, it followed, according to a Brahmin's reasoning, that poor Bhurmah, together with all his kindred, but more especially those of the female line, were every thing that is odious in a Brahmin's eyes. Having been duly apprized of these fair inferences, resulting from a priest having been eaten, he was commanded upon pain of an Ameldar's displeasure, to produce the head of the tigress, before she committed further sacrilege.
“It is an order!" answered the submissive Hindoo, shouldering the long matchlock, on which he had leaned during this satisfactory audience; and the man who wore three medals on his breast, rewards for gallantry in his many conflicts with tigers, retired cowering from the presence of an effeminate Brahmin, without a word of reply to the most insulting and unjust abuse.
Bhurmah, a poor Shikarie, and Mansfield, a British officer, were very different persons, and very different was the style in which the Ameldar addressed them.
As soon as he had vented his wrath upon the inferior, the administrator of justice penned a flowery letter to his superior, the English Burrah Sahib, of whose arrival in a neighbouring village he had that day been informed.
Having described the sad event in glowing language, he proceeded to beg that the mighty warrior, the great and powerful lord, in whose hands a lion was as a mouse, would be graciously pleased to extend the shadow of his protection over his devoted slaves, and come with his elephant and death-dealing weapon, to rid them of the destroyer of
Before sunset next day, Mansfield and Charles, attended by the trusty Azapah, were galloping along a path which led to Shikarpoor. The Doctor, whose battered frame had not yet recovered from the effects of the previous day's adventures, had remained behind, intending to follow them at a more sober pace next morning. Their road lay, for some miles, through a bamboo jungle, the outskirts of the Wynaad Forest, and as the day declined, 'the faster did they ply their
There were mementoes enough on that silent road, to warn the traveller not to linger after the sun had set. Heaps of stones, raised by the passers-by, to mark the spot where some ill-starred wretch had been killed by a tiger, presented themselves in many a gloomy spot, and as the riders passed each of these sad memorials, the foaming Arabs were pushed on at renewed speed—it would not do to be benighted here. The
open country was gained, the lofty pinnacle of the village pagoda was seen towering above the trees, and, ere another mile was passed, the riders had pulled up their smoking horses in the midst of the bazaar, and were surrounded by a host of natives, all salaaming with