페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub
[graphic]
[ocr errors]

THE TUSSUR SILK-WORM. arva of Bombyx Mori of Italy.

5. Tussur Cocoon cut open, with chrysalis inside. ntheræa Mylitta, or Tussur Moth (Male).

6. Silk of Antheræa Mylitta, or Tussur Silk. ombyx Mori of Italy (Female).

7. Cocoon of Bombyx Mori of Italy. ussur Cocoons, with their Pedicles, showing natural 8. Silk of Bombyx Mori of commerce, showinattachment to branches.

transverse sections.

CORRESPONDENCE, NOTES, ETC.

SIAM AND LORD SALISBURY. (With a French Map of Siam showing the claims and possessions of France

in Indo-China.) In March last the Bombay Gazette reported that:

“Lord Rosebery has notified to the Government of Siam that Great Britain will not interfere in the dispute between France and Siam. In point of fact, an understanding was arrived at between Lord Salisbury and M. Waddington some three years ago, by which, on the one hand, the right of India to occupy the Shan States between Burmah and the North-East frontier of Siam, and claimed by the latter country, was conceded, and on the other the claim of the Empire of Annam, which is a French Protectorate, to control the Laotian country lying between the Annamese Hills parallel to the Coast and the Mekong, was recognised by the British Foreign Office.” On this paragraph we observed that it explained "the mystery of our conduct towards Siam and the easy confidence of the French.”

The Spectator quoted our extract from the Bombay Gazette in an able article on “the Siamese question,” in which, first among our contemporaries it gave due weight to its “ Cambodian” aspect, though a letter in our Review, above that signature, written as early as the 4th of May last, already had, we fear in vain, brought it to the knowledge of the British public, and had also foretold every single item of the forthcoming French demands, besides others that are now being made or are in contemplation. Lord Salisbury then addressed the “Spectator” as follows:

SIR-My attention has been drawn to a statement, quoted by you in the Spectator of July 22, from Indian papers, to the effect that “ Lord Salisbury, three years ago, came to an understanding with M. Waddington by which India was to occupy the Shan States between Burmah and the north-east írontier of Siam, though claimed by the latter country, while France was to have all the left bank of the Mekong.” Will you allow me to say that this is a mistake? No understanding on this subject was come to between M. Waddington and myself.--I am, Sir, etc., Hatfield House, Hatfield, July 25th.

SALISBURY. On this the Editor of the Spectator expressed his satisfaction " that our hands are in no way tied by a diplomatic transaction.” This we were also glad to find, but as we happen to be insormed that the practical absorption of Siam and the construction of a Canal through the Malay Peninsula, had been one of the objects of “combination" of Baron Reinach (of Panama fame), M. Lanessan (now Governor of French Indo-China) and others pecuniarily interested in this "patriotic” undertaking; as we moreover knew how mistaken Lord Dufferin had been in Burmah and Afghanistan in "greasing the wheels," to quote a compliment to him of the Times, we felt that something more was required than the above diplomatic repudiation of an actual " understanding" having been “come to " between Lord Salisbury and M. Waddington, in order to cut the ground of "continuity of policy” from under the feet of Lord Rosebery; especially as the Bombay Gazette repeated and defined its previous statement in the following article:

a

“ General attention will be directed to the statement of M. Deville that Lord Rose. bery and Lord Dufferin have 'frankly declared' that Great Britain will not interfere to hinder France protecting' her frontier. . . . What is doubtless meant is that the British Government have again declared that they will not interfere in the dispute between France and Siam respecting the left bank of the Mekong. ... Lord Rosebery had made that declaration and subsequently stated in the House of Lords that he did not even know what were the claims France was pressing upon the Siamese ; he added that the Siamese themselves did not know either. ... The Siamese question was discussed at considerable length three years ago between Lord Salisbury and M. Waddington, at the time when sundry Siamese mandarins interfering in Shan States, which we claimed as belonging of right to Burma, were bundled out by officers of the Indian Government. The desirability of ascertaining the true limits of the Siamese Kingdom, which were once as elastic as a Gladstone bag then became apparent, and there were many pour parlers which led to an understanding. That it was expedient to come to an understanding on the subject was evident when the French Foreign Office suggested that the simplest plan would be for the British Government to do as they pleased in the territory west of a line drawn from north to south through Siam, while the French should do the same east of that line. If we are not greatly mistaken the understanding substituted for this trenchant project was that the French should rectify their Annamese burders as we had rectified our Burmese. This we fancy is the operation which we are now witnessing."

The whole of this article being very much more explicit than its predecessor, we sent it on to Lord Salisbury together with other papers, as it was "being apparently taken for granted that the British Government (and that too a Conservative one) had come to some arrangement with France at the expense of Siam and that this fact stood revealed by recent cessions and present negotiations.” We had also heard from Siamese sources that, had they some time ago accepted the offer of a French Protectorate, they would not have suffered their present pecuniary and territorial losses, but that, having good reason to believe in British support, the last crisis with France, which has led to their apparent irreparable injury, had been precipitated by them.

We are glad to say that to our unmistakable questions we received the highly satisfactory reply, repeated in two letters, that no understanding of any kind was arrived at upon the question of Siam during the tenure of office of the late Government. The fact, so unreservedly stated, is very creditable to the Conservative Government and is a complete refutation of the allegation that the present Government merely carried out the secret negotiations entered into by their predecessors, although, of course, everybody thought all along that the present Government had drifted far beyond any possible scope that such negotiations, if any, could have had. Our own knowledge of French public opinion on the subject of Siam for the last few years entirely corroborates Lord Salisbury's statement. It was laid down, time after time, in every French paper and on every French platform, whether of the “Colonial group," or in Geographical and other literary meetings, that on no account, and at no time, would the French allow any advice, much less interference, on behalf of Siam against any French claim of whatever kind, even if it included an avowed French Protectorate of that country, which was “the natural complement of the French empire of Indo-China.” The utmost to which moderate counsels, timidly uttered, would go, was to suggest a modus vivendi with England in tapping the trade of China from the South, but only after France had settled with Siam in her own way. “Just as you have 250 million customers in India, so we mean to have the 400 million customers of China." It is inconceivable that Lord Rosebery should ignore the numerous admirable works on Indo-China, written by French authors, among which, we wish to bring to special notice La France et l'Angleterre en Asie" by Philippe Lehault published by Berger-Levrault of Paris and Nancy. Its first volume on “Indo-China and the last days of the dynasty of the Kings of Ava” was published in 1892 and contains an immense amount of information as also a number of political and economic maps, including one on the explorations of Mr. Holt Hallett, which alone would have enabled, or would still enable, Lord Rosebery to answer any questions that may be put to him regarding the present, past and future French policy in that part of the East. He might also read with advantage the extract from M. Lehault's second volume, “ An Appeal to the Chamber of Commerce on the future of Indo-China.” We propose to review in an early issue this work which inter alia throws some light on the Marquis of Ava, who ought never to have been appointed to a country in which he had long before been very unpopular.

The great mistake of Siam has been to adopt European methods. As one of the biggest British exporters informs us, “had they never spoken English or French, they could now be in the safe seclusion of barbarous Morocco, although the latter is within easy gun-shot of nearly all the navies of Europe.” Had the King of Siam not been more anxious for the preservation of his palace than for that of his country, he could have defied even a bombardment of Bangkok, and French troops would now be dragging themselves out in weariness towards the Mekong frontier. even a bombardment of Bangkok might have been avoided, if, whilst repudiating all intention of interfering in the Franco-Siamese frontier and compensation disputes, we had merely declared that we could not allow Bangkok to be bombarded, for o of the trade there belongs to us. To this declaration France could not have raised any objection. Perhaps also Bangkok would have been safe, if the offer of the Chinese residents to sink their Junks in order to block the river passage, had been accepted. French Consuls have always tried to obtain a right “to protect” all Chinamen at Bangkok in their dealings with the Siamese, but there are very few real French Indo-Chinese subjects in Siam. The attempt, however, will be renewed and will probably be successful, unless China can prevent it

In the meanwhile there is a proposal for creating an independent bufferstate between the French possessions (actual and claimed) and those of China and our own, under the fugitive son of Theebaw, the Mingûn prince. This would be, indeed, poetic and political justice, which, advocated by a truly Liberal Ministry, might lead to the creation of a Marquis of Bangkok or of Laos or to the revival of the ancient Empire of the Khmêrs in an extended Cambodia as a reward for its loyalty and sacrifices to its French Protectors.

To make a consummation clear which many Frenchmen devoutly desire, we have much pleasure in presenting our readers with a popular and trustworthy coloured French Map of Siam and neighbouring countries, showing Tonquin, Cambodia and other French possessions as also the “contested ” territory. It has been compiled from French official sources and forms the last page of an illustrated Supplement, which we have purchased for our readers, of the “ Petit Journal.”

Palmam qui meruit ferat.

The authorities in Burma are at this present time considering the report of Mr. Bagley and his surveying party. Of the three alternate routes over the Shan plateau the line viâ Maymyo is said to have been selected as the most practicable. The distance between Mandalay and Thibaw has been detailed and sectioned as follows : ist, Mandalay to Maymyo ; 2nd, Maymyo to Gokteik gorge; 3rd, Gokteik including the gorge with the descent near Thabyinge and the ascent to Naungpine ; 4th section, Naungpine to Thibaw. Total length of the railway line comes to 124 miles. With temporary bridges it is estimated that the cost will not exceed one lakh of Rupees per mile.

COW-KILLING AND GREASED CARTRIDGES. The recent riots throughout India which have temporarily subsided in Bombay, where a recrudescence is expected on the return of the Seedees from the Persian Gulf, are solely due to the carelessness or to the ignorance of Government. Indeed, they are an inevitable and ever-recurring result of an Administration that will insist on being a foreign rule, instead of being based on indigenous sympathies and on a thorough knowledge of the languages, the religions, the historical and other associations of an Oriental country. Dr. Forrest has proved to demonstration that the mutiny of 1857 was due to "the greased cartridges," the introduction of which must have been deliberate, unless we accuse the old and experienced Ordnance Department of wilful ignorance. The eventual loss of India to Great Britain is inevitable unless its rulers learn to subordinate English views to Oriental necessities.

Whenever Parsis or Muhammadans sought refuge or hospitality in Hindu territories, their Rajas always made it the sine quâ non condition of their admission that they should not slaughter kine. In Kashmir, where the bulk of the population is Muhammadan, the killing of a cow used to be punished by starvation to death, and several Europeans, suspected of the deed, were accidentally drowned. In Lhassa the Buddhist Lamas tolerate large settled colonies of Muhammadans, but will not allow the visit of omnivorous Europeans. In some parts even of British India, the wild Nilgai, or so-called "blue cow" is protected from the sportsman. In the “India of the Rajas "the killing of cattle is prohibited. In British India it is allowed, but wise officials try to prevent its ostentatious exhibition. Pieces of beef are not hung out of Muhammadan butchers' shops, the carrying of that meat is concealed under a cloth and the shambles are generally outside the city in a walled enclosure. Where the British Gallio of the place is careless, the Hindu population is in a constant state of alarm. Ignorant or mischievous Muhammadans of the lower classes are apt to push pieces of beef in the face of Hindu passers

« 이전계속 »