페이지 이미지
PDF

rous deputations of chiefs and warriors from distant tribes conld not be expected to appear.

During the intervening time we had opportunities of becoming acquainted with the court and people, and of acquiring useful knowledge respecting the capabilities of the country; our intercourse with the King, his Ministers, and the people composing his court was constant, and of a most friendly nature. Their Majesties, especially the King, showed a very marked attention to the English Mission. The King's condescension to the young men composing it, and attached to it, was extremely gratifying. The good deeds of England in former days, in her abolition of slave traffic, and in paying to the Madagascar Government (although herself a loser by the • act) a full compensation for the losses sustained by the Government, as well as by individuals, have stamped the national character of England most favourably on the grateful hearts of the Malagash people. The self-sacrifice of the pious missionaries, their devotion to a labour of kindness towards the nation in everything that constitutes or aids in true civilization, were of themselves our best introduction to the good will of the people. Our prolonged residence amongst them, therefore, was in many respects most gratifying. It may safely be said that the rejoicing was general and sincere, on its being made known that the English mission was to remain. Everything was done to make our continued residence agreeable; and what with the amusements of the court, and the changing variety of incidents involving interest, we found the time pass swiftly, and the day of the coronation approach almost before we were prepared for its arrival.

During two nights preceding the ceremony, the whole country was brilliantly illuminated, and on the first of these (namely, the 21st September), a conflagration took place in the town, threatening its total destruction. The conduct of Lieutenant "Wadling, of the 5th Fusiliers, was on that occasion most energetic, and his courage and activity in arresting the flames very conspicuous. The King, who was witness to the scene, expressed very forcibly his sense of Lieutenant "VVadling's services, and invested him with a third-class Order of Kadama; and as it was gained at the manifest risk of his life, I much trust your Excellency will move Her Most Gracious Majesty to allow this young and gallant officer to accept and wear this order, in memory of the great service he rendered on this occasion to the King and people of Madagascar.

His Majesty was pleased to invest myself and 4 other British officers with other decorations of the same order. AVe solicit the same favour for ourselves, in this respect, as I now ask for Lieutenant "Wadling.

On the morning of the 23rd September, the coronation, after a night of great excitement throughout the capital, took place. Every house in it was filled with visitors from far aud near. No one seemed to seek for rest or sleep; merriment resounded through the streets the whole night long. Before dawn a cannon announced, with reverberating boom through the rocks, the approach of the auspicious day. By 7 o'clock all the ladies of the Boyal Family, clothed in scarlet cloth of the finest texture, and most richly embroidered in gold, were on their way from the palace and its neighbourhood to the Sconce, or sacred stone on which the Kings of the Hovas are crowned. By about noon the King had mounted the dais erected over the sacred stone, and placed the crown himself on his head. He then with his own hands crowned the Queen, by placing on her head a diadem of great beauty, also understood to be a present from the • French.

The King then addressed the people with energy and dignity, after which, retiring to his chair of state, it was signified to the Chiefs that he would accept their offering, or Hasina.

All the chief men of the country—all the Chiefs of tribes and clans—all the foreigners, and iu some cases women, representatives of tribes, came forward one by one, as they had opportunity, to present an offering of money, in gold or silver; this, with a few complimentary words, was given to officers iu front of the canopy or dais, and by them placed in a box covered with scarlet velvet.

A certain order of procession had been arranged by the English and French Consuls, but not made public. There was great confusion in proceeding to and returning from the place of coronation. The distance from the palace to the sacred stone may be considered more than two miles; all the distance was carefully aud well guarded by double lines of soldiers facing inwards, who, with their bayonets, preserved an open and free passage for the procession.

There could not have been less than 20,000 men under arms on this and similar duties. A large body guard, remarkably fine men, all appropriately dressed and armed, accompanied the King and Queen. The King, dressed in the uniform of a Field-Marshal of England, rode a very beautiful Egyptian horse, magnificently caparisoned, a present from Monsieur Lambert. The palanquin of the Queen, like a triumphal car, was of beautiful construction and costly material. She herself was magnificently dressed, and exhibited a truly royal appearance. The nobles and officers of all kinds were dressed hardly less splendidly; to enumerate their costumes would be difficult. Many varieties of uniform, most of them exhibiting great elegance, gave gaiety to the scene; most of them were of the richest possible velvets, embroidered in the most expensive and tasteful way: some were from France—many were the work of the Malagash themselves.

One of the nobles, Eanickotova, astonished all beholders by the magnificence of his helmet, which appeared to be of burnished gold, with large precious stones set in the body, or gracefully pendant in drops from the crest. Excepting in the confusion of the procession, all went off remarkably well. There was a splendid banquet in the evening, when many loyal toasts were given in honour of the occasion. Commodore Dupre proposed the health of the newly-crowned King in brief and forcible eloquence.

On the 24th of the month we bade farewell to the King and Queen of Madagascar, as well as of the French mission, with many expressions on all sides of reciprocal good feeling. Our journey to our port of embarkation was rapid. By your Excellency's kind provision for our comforts, we found the man-of-war steamer the Gorgon waiting for us at Tamatave; and after 4 days' sail arrived, after an absence of 3 months io a day.

A report of this nature would be incomplete without some notice of the present condition of Madagascar. Other pens than mine have made your Excellency and the public familiar with it during the last 12 months, and have, at the same time, entered into full descriptions of the travelling route from the coast to the capital; mine would be of little value excepting in corroborating the fidelity of those to which I refer. I attach a map, drawn with great accuracy and beauty of execution by Lieutenant Oliver, of the Eoyal Artillery.

I append also a memorandum, to which your Excellency will doubtless attach great value, from the pen of Dr. Mellor, on the botany, geology, and animal life of the country, embracing at the same time a notice of our daily route. By this, as well as by Lieutenant Oliver's map (to which this part of Dr. Mellor's memorandum is a fitting pendant), it will be seen that we estimate the journey at 204 miles, being about .50 miles less distance than the usual computation.

I add also a memorandum from the pen of the Lord Bishop of Mauritius, giving his impressions on the state of Christianity amongst the people, and a most interesting account of his visit to the places where numbers of them suffered martyrdom for their profession of Christian truth.

A report as to the agricultural productions of the country, in reference to its capabilities in furnishing supplies of corn, rice, sugar, potatoes, and of vegetables generally; as to its wealth in grazing lands and herds of cattle; also as to its sheep and poultry, has, I understand, been furnished you* by Deputy Assistant Commissary (General Caatray, who preceded the mission on public * Not yet received.—W. S.

service, counected with the plans of Commissary General Routli for military supplies of this colony.

The information your Excellency lias received from so authentic a source of the fertility of the soil, and the extraordinary cheapness of all food, animal and farinaceous, cannot fail in being of value and interest to a colony which produces an insufficiency of food for the consumption] of its own inhabitants. With these additions to my own report, I am in hopes that the poverty of mine may be excused.

I venture to express a hope that your Excellency will approve ol the endeavours of each member of the mission to fulfil the object prescribed to us individually and collectively.

I have, &c.

PROTOCOLS of Conference between Great Britain, Prance, and Russia, relative to the Succession to the Throne oj Greece.*May, June, 1863.

No. 1.—Protocole de la Conférence tenue au Foreign Office, h 1G

Mai, 1863.

Presents :—Les Plénipotentiaires de Prance, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Eussie.

Le Principal Secrétaire d'Etat de Sa Majesté Britannique pour les Affaires Etrangères a ouvert la séance par un exposé historique des événements qui ont mis fin à l'ordre de succession établi en Grèce par la Convention conclue à Londres le 7 Mai, 1832,t entre les Cours de France, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Eussie, d'une part, et de l'autre, Sa Majesté le Boi de Bavière, agissant en qualité de tuteur de son fils puiné le Prince Frédéric Othon de Bavière.

Les Plénipotentiaires ont pris en sérieuse considération ces événements, accomplis sous des circonstances entièrement étrangères à l'action de leurs Cours.

En présence de ces faits ils ont reconnu, avec un sentiment unanime de regret, qu'après 30 années d'épreuve, l'ordre de choses établi en 1832 n'est point parvenu à se consolider en Grèce sous lu dynnstie que la Convention du 7 Mai a appelée au trône, en vertu du pouvoir déféré alors par la nation Grecque aux Cours de France de la Grande Bretagne, et de Eussie. Leur manda*

Sir W. Stevenson.

M. C. JOHNSTONE.

• Laid before Parliament, 1863.

t Aro). XIX. Page 33.

[graphic]

est donc actuellement éteint: mais les négociations qui ont précédé la signature de la dite Convention, ainsi que celle de l'Article explicatif et complémentaire du 30 Avril, ls.33, ayant été conduites avec le concours du Ministre de Sa Majesté le Roi de Bavière, les Plénipotentiaires de France, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Russie ont cru devoir constater l'intention de leurs Cours respectives d'offrir à l'auguste Chef de la Maison de Bavière un juste témoignage d'égards en l'invitant à autoriser son Représentant à Londres à prendre part à leurs délibérations.

Et après lecture du présent Protocole, rédigé d'un commun accord, les Plénipotentiaires de Frauce, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Russie, y ont apposé leurs signatures.

BON GROS.

RUSSELL.

BRUNNOW.

No. 2.—Protocole de la Conférence tenue au Foreign Office, le 27

Mai, 1863.

Presents :—Les Plénipotentiaires de France, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Russie.

Les Plénipotentiaires de France, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Russie se sont réunis pour prendre connaissance du résultat de la démarche faite à Munich par les Représentants des 3 Puissances protectrices, conformément aui résolutions arrêtés en Conférence le 10 Mai.

Le Principal Secrétaire d'Etat de Sa Majesté Britannique pour les Affaires Etrangères a annoncé que la Cour de Bavière n'a pas autorisé son Ministre accrédité près Sa Majesté Britannique à prendre part aux délibérations ouvertes à Londres.

Dans l'absence de ce Ministre, le Principal Secrétaire d'Etat de Sa Majesté Britannique a cru devoir rappeler toutefois les réserves établies au mois d'Avril dernier par la Cour de Bavière, en faveur des branches cadettes de la Famille Royale de Bavière que l'Article VIII de la Convention du 7 Mai, 1832,# a substituées éventuellement i Sa Majesté le Roi Othon, si ce Souverain venait à décéder sans postérité directe et légitime.

Il a été convenu, d'un commun accord, d'insérer cette déclaration dans le présent Protocole.

Considéraut néanmoins que l'impossibilité de mettre désormais il exécution les stipulations de l'Article VIII précité résulte d'un événement de force majeure, dont les 3 Puissances protectrices ne sont nullement responsables les Plénipotentiaires de Franco, de la Grande Bretagne, et de Russie ont reconnu que leurs Cours, dégagées de leur mandat par des circonstances que la Convention • Vol. XIX. Page 33. [1862-63. Lin.] L

« 이전계속 »