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one hand, and to force changes on Asia, in the, to it the very worst, and call it cowardname of Christianity, with the other-seize the pre. ice. It is highly expedient, therefore, sent occasion to make war on China. And, as there is no assignable stopping place between the that those who have seen our disgrace, assumption of arms, and a ihorough reduction of should be the first to feel oùr power. the Chinese spirit and force, take measures accord Whatever is to be done, we trust will ingly. Find the way to the mouths of the "Iwo be effectual ; that our demand upon them rivers” by sed; and the way to Yunnan by land from India. Cut off the coasting trade, and de.
will be peremptory the execution stroy the canal approaches to the Imperial residen. prompt. Active measures, and these ces. Look out for some talented traitor; call him alone, will make an impression on the the sole representative of the old Ming family; set Chinese authorities, and do away that up his throne in the deserted courts of its ancient slight and contempt of our power, which halt of China the price of this protection;" and we have unfortunately allowed to spring on coming away, bring a reimbursement, and leave up among them. Written correspondence, a subsidy Superiority in arms and discipline may in the first instance, we are decidedly of make all this easy; To render it more sure, let it opinion, should be avoided : their aim for western piety to give Christianity to the East, will be delay, and a reference to Pekin and that its angry ambition is the only means with would give them two months. Written in its reach, I mean its only human instrumen discussion, once admitted, and they will tality.'--Opium Crisis, pp. 81, 82.
assuredly beat us at it ; no people on We are not disposed to agree with earth are such adepts at what is called, any of this gentleman's suggestions, least passive resistance,' as the Chinese. The of all with the hint about encouraging two rivers, the one within and the other the disaffected partisans, if there be any,
without Macao, (the eastern and western of the old Ming dynasty, to put down passages) ought to be immediately blockthe present government England
aded ; but not, we trust, until a declara. is not the nation to foment rebellion, tion of war, and a subsequent or simultaand encourage revolution, in foreign neous notification of blockade, according states. Perish the tea, the opium, the to ancient practice, shall have been prosilk, and the whole trade of China, rather mulgated; for why should we follow the than she should be concerned in such lawless example of modern France ? We nefarious plans! Something, however, mention this with a view to prevent cavil must be done ; a solemn example is from neutral nations, who are at all times necessary, after the brutal and vindictive naturally annoyed, and extensively injur. measures of the Chinese at Canton ; and ed, by a blockade. The short blockade on that spot, too, where the English of two or three days of the Canton river character has suffered insult, and the by the Volage produced from twelve free British flag has been dishonoured in what, and independent citizens of the United certainly, appears to have been a foolish States, the following remonstrance : attack by a cutter, a pinnace, and a small
• To H. Smith, Esq., Captain of her Majesty's armed vessel, on three large men-of-war Ship Volage, Hong Kong Bay. junks, protected by a battery. Captain • We beg leave most respectfully to present to you, Elliott admits that he fired the first shot, and through you, to her Majesty's chief superin which was answered, both by them and tendent of trade in China, that the right of such a
blockade cannot be recognised by the undersigned ; the battery, with a spirit not at all unex. and, if attempted to be carried into effect to their pected by me ; for I have already had injury, or the injury of the American shipping and experience that the Chinese are much interests, will be considered by the undersigned, underrated in that respect.' After a fire
and by their countrymen, an infringement of their of half an hour, the boats retreated from of nations, existing treaties, 'illegal, and without
legal and just rights; it being contrary to the laws a want of ammunition. It would have precedent. been still worse, if there were truth in We bercby enter our most solemn protest against the story of the Volage having looked at such a blockade, as we understand, from report, is
now proposed to be enforced. And we do hereby these junks, and retired the follow morn- give notice, that we shall hold her Britannic Maing because Captain Elliott had changed jesty and her government responsible in the fullest his mind in the course of the night. The manner for whatever lives may be sacrificed, and Volage acted as she did, because it was citizens, in consequence of said blockade and sud.
other losses that may be sustained by American felt to be wrong that deliberate hostili- den proceedings of her Majesty's officers in China, ties should be committed by one of her and we shall further hold you personally and all Majesty's ships without direct authority persons acting under your authorily, responsible for from the government. Let us, however,
whatever lives may be lost or injury sustained, in put the most favourable construction on
person or property, by any American citizen.' this affair ; the Canton people will attach Nothing of this protest appears in the
papers laid before parliament ; but that The barges either go under sail or are such a blockade was illegal, must, we dragged by men, according as the wind think, be admitted by all. No power, we suits or not ; but it is more than probabelieve, can legally institute a blockade ble that the country around would be except a belligerent, and were not then driven, and no trackers to be had. Ad. at war with China. We may, perhaps, mitting this, however, not to be the case, blockade the port of a foreign power, and that the party were suffered to reach who has done us an injury, or on whom Tien-sing with little molestation, they we have claims, without a declaration of would find abundance of wealth, no doubt, war; but under such a blockade, we have in this immense city, which, according to no right to prevent the free ingress and Lord Macartney, extends along both egress of the ships of a neutral power. banks of the river, as far as Milbank is
Supposing, however, that neither a from Limehouse, and is said to contain blockade nor a declaration of war be 700,000 inhabitants ; but the objects of adopted, but that the flag-ship should at plunder or confiscation would be of a once pass the Bocca Tigris, and proceed bulky description : no precious metals or to the second bar, perhaps to Whampoa : jewellery, no articles of great value and - From thence the admiral would proba- small compass. Indeed it may be conbly send a message to the governor, or sidered a matter of doubt, whether the commissioner, if he should still be there, invading party would be able to bring to demand an interview, either on board anything away, even themselves; for it the flag-ship or in the city-both of which can hardly be doubted that the troops, the we doubt not, would be refused. But the militia, and the whole posse comitalus, flag-ship, in passing the Bocca, it is pro- would be called to the banks of the river, bable, would be fired upon by the fort ; where thousands and tens of thousands hence the commencement of hostilities. would be assembled, and the river itself The fort would soon be silenced, taken most easily rendered impassable, by the possession of, and the blockade necessa- sinking of barges or junks, or whatever rily follow, and probably an order given might effectually stop the navigation. to take, sink, or destroy, the whole of the Our opinion, then, most decidedly is, that shipping between the mouth of the river any attempt of the kind would fail, the and the city, consisting of many hun result be fatal, and defeat and disgrace dreds—thousands, indeed, of one descrip- certain. tion or other. This proceeding may be The more we think on what has hapdeemed advisable, to prevent the enemy pened at Canton, the stronger is our consinking them to impede the navigation of viction that the first and great blow must the river. A desire to communicate may be struck there ; because it is there that at this point, perhaps, be signified by the insult, oppression, robbery, defeat, and Chinese authorities, and the answer disgrace have been sustained. Having might properly be, that the conditions struck this blow, which would soon be must now be settled at Pekin, and that a known at Pekin, then proceed to the powerful squadron has already gone up the northward, and let the flag-ship, with part Eastern and Yellow Sea for that purpose. of the squadron, anchor before the mouth
A part of the squadron with the flag- of the Pei ho ; or, for the purpose of inship will no doubt go into the Gulf of Pe- creasing the alarm, take possession of tchelee. The despatch of a peremptory the Mia-tau islands in the gulf, where demand of satisfaction from the emperor, there is excellent anchorage. The very sent by one of the mandarins at Takoo appearance of these ships would, no (close to the mouth of the Pei-ho) may doubt, create such an alarm in the capital, be proper, accompanied probably with as to induce the ministers of the imperial proposals for a treaty.
This would not court to sue for peace. This would be fail to 'occasion considerable alarm at infinitely more desirable than anything, Pekin ; but any attempt to proceed thi in the way of treating, that could be ther, or, indeed, up to the great northern effected with the officers of Canton; for emporium, ! ien-sing, would, we think, be even supposing their intentions honourattended with vast difficulty, and proba. able (a most liberal supposition !), what. ble disaster. There are thousands of ever one triennial governor might conjunks, harges, and various kinds of crast, cede, his successor would be very likely the whole way from Ta-koo to Tien-sing, to set aside. But if a treaty could be the distance being about eighty miles by concluded, with the seal and signature of the river, and from forty to fifty by land. the emperor, it would bear the stamp of
law, and be considered in all parts of equal to lay waste the whole face of the China valid and permanent. The con- country from the Pei-ho to the Bocca Ti. cession of a just and reasonable indemni- gris. They must not, however, from misty for the past aggressions, and security taken humanity, or whatever other feeling, for persons and property for the future, let any of the public ships of war escape, placing our commercial intercourse with as those of Admiral Kwan's squadron were China on an honourable and stable footing, allowed to do. After sinking two (not might reasonably be expected from the five or six) out of thirty or thereabouts, imperial court, rather than the entertain- and the destruction of four or five hun. ment of any hope on its part from the dred men, by the Volage and Hyacinth, continuance of the war.
without a single man killed on our part, Before making such a concession, how the letting the rest quietly escape may ever, it is a matter of course that the have been dictated by a generous and emperor should demand from England, humane feeling, added to the consider. what Lin would fain have extorted from ation that these British vessels were only Elliott--a solemn pledge that no more on the defensive ; but the Chinese will opium should ever be imported into China give us no credit for any such feelings, in English ships ; and this we must say, and we shall see, by the next account, is a pledge which would not and could that this gallant admiral, who boasts his not be given, because it would be impos- descent from the Chinese god of war, will sible to redeem it. All we could promise claim a victory.* would be, to discountenance its intro It is scarcely possible to conceive the duction, while it must be their business, state of poverty that prevails on a great not ours, to
ellect its prohibition. part of the coast; and the public buildThey should be made acquainted that ings and works of defence, where there we can have no control over the cargoes are any, are almost everywhere a mass of of ships from Manilla, Batavia, Singapore, ruins. Medhurst, the missionary, who and various parts of the eastern world, coasted downwards from the promontory nor can we possess any power to prohibit of Shan-tung, thus describes one of the such ships from attempting to smuggle places at which he landed--adding, that opium into any of the numerous ports of many others were very similar to it: a coast 1300 or 1400 miles in extent.
• We had now time to look around us and sur. Captain Elliott, however, has proposed a measure, which appears to be unobjecti, nally surrounded with a mud wall
, and provided
vey the town, which we found to have been origionable, that unless the consignee and with gateways, but now miserably out of repair. commander of every English vessel, on The ramparts were so low and so sloping that it was the day of arrival, hand in to the superin. casy to walk up one side and down the other, while tendent a solemn declaration, in Chinese
the portals were dilapidated and exposed. Only
one fourth of the space within the walls was occuand English, that she has brought no pied by houses, many of which were in ruins. All opium to China, has none on board, neither things marked decay rather than improvement; and will receive any, she shall not be allowed the place must have sadly deteriorated within the to trade.' This, we think, goes as far as their map as an important military station. The
last century, as the Jesuits have marked it down in can reasonably be required. All Lin had same observation holds true of all parts of Shan. -all the Pekin government ever can have tung which we have seen.' -a right to demand from us is, that our public officers shall neither give or claim And yet this is one of the finest provinprotection of any sort, for the behoof of ces, and adjacent to that of the capital. those who choose to prosecute an illegal
With the exception, therefore, of the traffic.
immense group of the Chusan Islands, If the conceit and ignorance of the into the midst of which flow two navigaChinese should induce them, notwith. ble rivers, the one leading to the city of standing what is likely to happen, to refuse Ningpo, a flourishing place, and the other all reasonable demands, in such case, un
to Hong-cheu-foo, one of the wealthiest doubtedly, nothing would be left but to cities in the empire, and excepting, also, let loose our ships of war along the whole Amoy, a town of considerable trade, there extent of the eastern coast, to take or de is no spot on that extensive coast that stroy their coasting trade, and to threat-would be likely to tempt the hostility en their towns and villages. But the force
of a British man of war. Some of the employed on such a service need only consist of two or three small frigates and as Pekin of Kwan's victory over two British ships of
* We were right; a report has been sent to many sloops, which would be more than
writers talk of the numerous ships in the many thousand square miles might be Yellow Sea, bearing tribute to Pekin. completely deluged. But in wbatever This is a mistake; the valuable articles way the circumstances of the war may of tribute, as it is called-tea, silks, grain compel the brave officers of our navy to -are all conveyed to the several public act, we may be quite sure that their own depôts by the great internal navigation- sense and feeling will be 'parcere subjecthe Imperial Canal. The coast trade is tis, debellare superbos.' of a mean description: all the junks, with We are not, however, by any means, the exception of those conveying rice and clear as to the expediency of ascending salt to the northern provinces, being car either of these great rivers. Steamers ried on by poor families, several of them would, undoubtedly, get up—though the living in separate departments of the same currents are so rapid, that sailing craft junk There are the various kinds of would not be able to stem them; but the fishing craft, in which myriads of poor safe return even of steamers might be people are employed along the whole line doubtful; the Chinese, as we have said, of the eastern coast; others, again, obtain are a crafty people, and full of expedients, a livelihood by a petty coasting trade from and little would be thought by them of port to port. All these and the numerous blocking up the navigation by sinking a villages along the sea-coast might most multitude of their huge junks, which are easily be swept away, and universal dis- to be found in every creek and stream on tress be inflicted on the unoffending na- the banks. The same observation indeed tives; and to no good purpose, for this will apply to all the rivers ; but the Peiwould make but little impression at Pe- ho, which leads to the great emporium of kin; it would be set forth in the Pekin Tien-sing, could be more easily blocked gazette, as the act of foreign pirates and up than the others. Our caution not to robbers, whom his imperial majesty had hold the Chinese too cheap is not to be ordered his admirals to drive away from despised. The 8000 Tartar troops in the the face of the ocean. But these extreme vicinity of the capital may be better than proceedings, we trust, will not happen. we are apt to fancy. We did not expect God forbid it should fall to the lot of to find that, in the fort protecting the bay British naval officers to carry into execu- of Cooloon, there was mounted a thirtytion such severities, in order to avenge two pounder gun; or that one of their the local tyranny of a few menials of a junks should have fired a twelve-pound despotic government !
shot into the mast of the Hyacinth. We are quite aware that, to make the But of one thing we are quite certain results of war efficient, a proportion of -- that whatever the issue of the crisis' the inhabitants of the country, against may be-whatever concession we may which it is waged, must suffer; but in all obtain in the way of apology, indemnificases, and especially with regard to Chi- cation, restoration, or even extension and na, whose people can offer little or no enfranchisement of our legitimate trade resistance, our efforts should, as much -in short, whatever advantages we may as possible, be directed to establishments gain by the contest—and by prudent maand edifices of a public nature ; if contri- nagement we cannot fail to gain somebutions are to be levied, it should be only none of them will long avail us, if de. on the wealthy and accessible cities of pendent on any agreement concluded Canton, Amoy, Ningpo, and Hong-cheu- with the Viceroy of Canton ; on the confoo. As steamers will probably be em. trary, all our exertions—all the expense ployed on the present occasion, they of the armament-loss of time and delay might ascend the two great rivers, the —will produce no permanent effect, Whang-ho and the Yang-tse-kiang, to the unless, as we have already said, we shall points where they intersect the Grand be able to obtain a solemn treaty, writ. Canal, and where, if destruction were the ten in the two languages, and ratified object, there are the means of inflicting under the seal and signature of the Emthe greatest possible degree of distress, peror of China, confirming the future both of a public and private nature, not security of the lives and property of our only by intercepting all the supplies pro. mercantile subjects, employed in lawful ceeding along that populous line, but by enterprises, granting full permission to breaking down the banks, in consequence communicate freely and directly with the of which the whole adjacent country* for provincial authorities, and embracing all
other points which it may be deemed Quarterly Review, No. C.
necessary to secure in our future inter.
course with this great kingdom. The i sume to form an opinion, except only demand of such a treaty cannot well be that we may confidently assume that resisted on the plea of want of precedent, neither this latter object, nor any other for Russia obtained a treaty, signed at constitutional change, ever entered into Pekin, regulating the trade of the two the imaginations of some of the most nations at Kiatka and Mia-mia-chin; but eminent persons who gave their approeven if there were no precedent in Chi- bation to those proceedings. Certain, nese history, it is sufficient that the time however, it is, that these resolutions has come when China can no longer be seem to involve some very alarming prinallowed, from whatever jealousy or ciples, and have in fact produced a con haughtiness, to refuse to bind herself to flict between law and privilege, of exsomething like the diplomatic jus gen- treme difficulty, and even of considerable tium. And it is needless to conceal that, danger. even in regard to the status, and animus It may, perhaps, appear presumptuous too, of this empire, we and the other in us to hope that our opinion can have civilized nations of the world have excel- any effect in accommodating a difference lent reason to keep in consideration the where the most eminent of our lawyers past and present course, tendency and and statesmen seem to have failed ; extent of Russian influence and Russian but as we have a strong impression that intrigue.
the real and fundamental principle of the case has been, if not overlooked, at least overlaid, in a vast quantity of extrinsic matter, and as we fancy that we see a mode of reconciling all- except, perhaps,
the very extreme opinions—we feel it Art. IX.-1. Reports of the Select Com- our duty to offer our humble attempt
mittee of the House of Commons on towards so desirable an object. Printed Papers. 1837 1840.
We shall begin by a short statement 2. Speech of the Right Hon. Sir Robert of the facts.
Peel on the Question of Privilege, Sth The great expense of printing the vast, June, 1837.
and, in too great a proportion, useless, 3. Remarks on the Report of a Select Com- quantity of papers annually laid before
mittee of the late House of Commons on parliament, induced Mr. Hume to sug. the Publication of Printed Papers. gest, and a select committee to adopt, so 1837.
lately as the 13th August, 1835, the fol. 4. Letter to Lord Langdale on the recent lowing resolution proceedings of the House of Commons on
• • Resolved, that the Parliamentary Papers and the subject of Privilege. By Thomas Reports printed for the use of the House should be Pemberton, Esq., M.P. Third Edition. rendered accessible to the public by purchase, at 1840.
the lowest priec they can be furnished ; and that a sufficient number of extra copies shall be printed
for that purpose.'”—Pemberton, pp. 10, 11. Good cases make bad precedents: when the merils of a particular question are And this was followed 13th March, 1836, very clear, mankind in general are not by the following: disposed to be critical as to its minute forms, nor jealous of its possible conse
Foo Resolved, that Messrs. Hansard, printers to quences. And it was probably under the in- the House, be appointed to conduct the sale.
" That, in order to render the Parliamentary fluence of some such feeling, in the case of Papers accessible to the public through the means Stockdale and Hansard (where the merits of other booksellers, it is expedient that a discount were so decidedly against the plaintiff,) of twelve and a half per cent. should be allowed to that the House of Commons was led to the trade who shall become purchasers.'” – p. 11, pass certain resolutions of a wider scope
Now be it observed -a most important and more comprehensively penal cha- fact, and never to be lost sight of-that racter than they would probably have this promiscuous sale-under commercial adopted if the subject-matter had been forms, and for a mere economical object more questionable. Whether this was -was entirely new; and that therefore from mere natural impulse, or whether all antecedent precedents as to the public there was in any mind a latent desire to cation and sale of parliamentary papersseize a
favourable opportunity for ex. however numerous and conclusive as to tending the privileges of the democratic such modes of 'sale and publication as branch of the legislature, we cannot pre- formerly existed-can have no bearing on