Life in Feejee, or, Five Years among the Cannibals
Destruction of Rewa—The Prisoner—Return to Bau—A Mistake—-Arrival of the American Consul—The Lazy Boy—The Escape—Return to Bau—Vatai—The Tonga Chief—Queen of Rewa—Captives at Bau— Origin of the War with Rewa.
Capt. Hartwell has arrived, and brings intelligence of the destruction of Rewa. The town was burnt, and about four hundred inhabitants massacred. The following are the particulars of the affair:—It appears that a party in Rewa favored Bau. A petty chief of this party went to Bau, and had an interview with Thakombau, its master spirit, when he promised to betray Rewa into his hands. The messenger was instructed to return to Rewa, and tell its king that Thakombau would come and fight Rewa on a given day, and after the battle he would receive their "soro," and they would be at peace. When the day arrived, Thakombau, accompanied by his warriors and butchers (Lasakaus), sailed for Rewa, and appeared before the town about daylight. A message was sent to the principal wife of the king, who is a near relative of the king of Bau, commanding her, with her children and all the Bau women, to come on board his canoe for safety, as they were about to engage in battle, and the town was to be burned. As the women were preparing to obey the message, the king page 151awoke, and surprised at what he saw, he inquired where the women were going. When his wife told him, he said, "I shall go with you." When they had assembled at the river side, two canoes were in waiting. Thakombau, with some of his followers, were in one, and the other was empty. Thakombau ordered the king to come to the one that he occupied, and the women and children to embark on board the other. "No," said the king, "I will not leave my women and children,—where they go, I will go." He thought, probably, that while he remained with his queen his life was safe, as she was a Bau woman of high rank. Such has heretofore been their custom, and its violation has never been known previous to the present instance. Thakombau ordered a man to fire at the king. This being done, he fell, exclaiming, "Has it come to this?" The king was wounded, not killed; and Thakombau perceiving this, ordered several warriors to step to the other canoe, and despatch him with their clubs.
The Marama had appeared as one stunned from the moment she had embarked in the canoe. She did not suspect that her husband's life was in danger from his enemies while she was with him. Such a thing had never been known in the annals of her country. The order to club her husband, however, roused her from her stupor, and she hastily stepped on to the other canoe, and knelt at the feet of her cousin, and in a voice of agony said, "Oh! my brother, my brother, (cousins are called brothers and sisters, as they have no word in their language which expresses uncle, aunt, or cousin,) save the life of my husband. Do not kill him, but let him be 'bulu' (well), and he will bring wood to cook your food, or do any thing for you. Oh.' brother, hear page 152my speech!" "He has greatly injured me and shall die," was the reply.
While the half distracted wife was vainly pleading with her inhuman cousin for the life of her husband, two warriors were pounding him with their clubs, but it seemed as though the victim bore a charmed life. They did not kill him, and he was at last strangled. The wife and children witnessed the whole scene.
While the above was being enacted on board the canoes, the town had been fired by its betrayer, and the butchers had commenced their slaughter. The brother of the king fled to the mountains, and the strong men of Rewa mostly fled, leaving their aged, and women and children, to meet the murderous club, and supply the cannibal feasts. Thakombau returned immediately to the capitol, bearing his captives, among whom was the mother of Revelete, who was an own sister of the king of Rewa.
Thus another victory has been gained by treachery; and it is said that Thakombau has stepped upon the top round of the ladder, from which some prophecy that he will soon begin to descend. He may be hurled from its top, but I do not think he will ever descend by its rounds.
The natives say that the prophecy is still fulfilling respecting the five brothers of Rewa. Two are left; and to accomplish the whole, it is only necessary to kill Garenggeo, make "Ko-mai-ni-mana," or Phillips, as he is generally called, king, and shoot Thakombau.
Capt. H. has his prisoner on board the Gambia, being undetermined, as yet, what to do with him. He found means to loose his irons last night, intending to swim to the shore. His intentions, however, were frustrated, and he was obliged to sleep without the benefit of a salt water bath.page 153
|11.||The king came on board with an old musket, and desired a new one for it. Mr. W. was busy at the time attending to the weight of some fish, and sent him word that the old musket was not worth a fish-hook. The message greatly offended His Majesty, and he took the hostage in his canoe and departed for the island. As soon as Mr. W. heard how he had offended the chief, he sent a whale's tooth as a "soro," which was received, and the hostage returned.|
|12.||The Nagumu people leave Mathuata and fishing to-day, to return home, declaring that they are afraid on account of the man in irons on board the Gambia. Our hostage is also afflicted in the same way. He says that he has not slept for two nights. He has been allowed to leave, and we shall have one of higher rank in his room,|
|13.||The Gambia sailed away in fine style. A parting salute was fired by both vessels.|
Retova says that Tatave told him that it was by the direction of the Bau chiefs that they were about to take the Gambia. He said Bau was angry because Capt. H. went to Rewa, and supplied their enemies with ammunition. I presume that Capt. H. did not do this, but their jealousy was such that they accused him of it. Tatave said that many angry messages had been sent to Vewa, and Thakombau was intending soon to attack the place, as he was very angry with the missionary for converting Verani.
Mr. Hunt writes us that the gospel progresses, and the heathen rage. But their trust is in God, who has hitherto kept them from harm.
|16.||The Star brings word from Kandavu that Retova is angry with that people, because they attended a "Solavu" in a neighboring town without his permission. He has sent them word that four men must be brought page 154him to eat, as payment for their offence. Since the message, the people are afraid to go to the reefs. Thus he has sent the Geer and Nagumu people home, and prevented the Kandavu people from fishing. He promised Mr. W. that if he would take him to Bau, on his return the vessel should be loaded in four months. His object, however, is evidently to enrich himself without working, which is very well for him, but does not load the bark. Ndury came off to-day in a very ill-humor, and talked in the most impudent manner. He inquired what would be done with Tatave. Mr. W. told him that he did not know. "I know," he answered. "He will be carried to America and brought back again; for there is no one to punish him there. It is a poor place, and the sons of its king have to come here for "beech de mer". "What son of its king has ever been here?" was asked. "Capt.——, who wore a red sash," was the reply. "He said that none but the sons of kings were allowed to wear a red sash." "His Man-Friday wears a red sash, too. Is he also the king's son?" "Yes," was the reply. "He married Capt.——'s sister." "The Malolo people," said I, "do not think that America is a little place." "The vessels that come here," he replied, "are now all rotten, and the king is too poor to have any more made. The Turaga-lavu said that vessels of war would be sent here in four years; they do not come, though many white men have been killed. If Capt. Hartwell's vessel had been taken, no one would come to see about it." What could be said to this? During the four years succeeding the squadron's visit, no murders were committed upon white men; but since the expiration of that term some fifteen persons have been killed. It is a pity that a promise of that kind should have been made, as since its non-fulfilment, the page 155natives have become more daring. When Ndury had "freed his mind," he departed.|
|17.||Johnson, from the house on shore, relates that after the cannibal dinner, which took place the other day, all who shared in these delights were very particular in their ablutions afterwards. Not one of them are willing to visit the spot after dark where their meal was taken. The young man who threw a bone behind the house, will not go out after dark, declaring that the bone had whistled to him as he left the house one evening. This shows that there must be a little monitor within which tells them that it is wrong to eat each other. Ratanga once said to me, "Do the Americans never eat each other?" "No," I replied, "we know better. Our pigs and cats sometimes devour their young, but we are not like pigs and cats. Do you not see how superior men and women are to these animals? You would think it very strange, if, instead of talking, we were to grunt and mew like them, and it would be equally strange did we learn of them to eat each other. We do not wish to learn the habits of these animals." He looked exceedingly ashamed, and after a pause said, "The Feejeeans are then like pigs!" "No," I replied; "they are worse than pigs, for they do not eat great pigs that live with them; only their little ones, and seldom these. They know no better. It is many years since Feejeeans have been told that it is horrible to eat each other, and they are now becoming ashamed of the practice. You told me that you did not eat any of that man the other day. Why did you tell me so? It was because you were ashamed; and why were you ashamed? It was because you knew it to be wrong." "Ko eko sa ngase,"— "You are wise." And thus the conversation ended with a compliment to myself. I have never found a native, page 156chief, priest, or poor man, who would say any thing in favor of their customs, but will usually say, "Yes, we are a foolish people, and our customs are foolish." This is not said because they believe it to be the case, but out of courtesy.|
|18.||Broke up the fishing establishment at this place, and set sail for Raverave in more than half a gale of wind, which carried away the maintop gallant yard, and split the mainsail. As the sails and yards were wanted for farther use, the captain thought best to anchor at Kandavu till the gale subsided.|
The boat was sent into the town for water, and the natives on seeing it approach, armed themselves, and waited on the beach for its arrival. The men, however, went and filled their casks without any trouble.
About ten o'clock we sailed for Raverave, where we soon arrived and anchored.
|21.||Mr. W. made his final settlement with Retova, who brought me a present of two pigs and a valuable war-club.|
|22.||We anchored last night at Nivaka. The boat was sent ashore to buy bananas and cocoa-nuts, but stopped about twenty yards from the shore. There were four natives to be seen on the beach, who stood and looked at the men in the boat, and the men in the boat looked at the men on the shore. As there were no bananas or cocoa-nuts in the water, and the men showed no inclination to go any nearer the shore for them, the captain ordered a musket to be fired for their return.|
The morning being bright and fair, our sails were spread to the breeze, and we started for Bua. We had not advanced far, however, when the sun became obscured by heavy masses of clouds, and the rain poured in torrents. Our situation was rather dangerous for sev-page 157eral hours, from the many sunken rocks, besides shoals and reefs which abound in oar course. We arrived at Bua in safety and the anchor was cast in its bay. In the afternoon the weather became clear, and we received several native visitors, who brought some very acceptable eatables for sale. We have seldom had any thing offered for sale during our late sojourn on the Mathuata coast, which may be truly termed a land of dearth. The towns which belonged to Tuimathuata, and those of its present chief, were so intermixed that they are continually destroying each other's food, and are often nearly starving themselves.
While we were bartering with the natives, I asked if there were any kalavus on the land (meaning balawas, or pine-apples). "Yes," they replied, "there are a great many there." "Ah, it is very good. I wish you would bring me some," I said. "Bring you kalavus, marama! What for?" "To eat," I replied. "To eat! How many?" "Oh, a hundred," I said. "A hundred! well, we did not know that white people ate kalavus." "Yes we do, and we love them very much. I love them, Mr. W. loves them, and the sailors, and all love them." "Na kalavu marama, vaka ogo?" "A rat, marama?" and he set his fingers crawling along on the table. "Oh, no, no, no!" I exclaimed, for I found that I had been engaging them to bring me a hundred rats.
The old Turaga does not come off, as he is getting to feel a grasshopper to be a burden. His son, Batenamu (Putnam), took tea with us.
We are now anchored at Bua point. Four sailboats of various sizes, and double that number of canoes are about us. The visit is principally from the white residents at Solavu. Among them, however, is a boat measuring three fathoms in length and nine in breadth.page 158
This little craft has just arrived from New Zealand, commanded by Capt. Walker, late of Salem, Mass. We learn by him that the United States Consul for the South Pacific will be here soon. A young man accompanies the Consul, and brings letters for us from home, which I presume will not be detained as our last were.
We are here favored with an abundance of fruits, vegetables and pure water, which I have learned to appreciate. I think it is almost a miracle that we are not all sick from the effects of the vile liquid misnamed water, that we have sometimes used. While our vessel was at Mathuata, we learned that the natives bathed in the place where our water casks were filled. The casks were then sent to Kandavu, where one of our crew and a Salem boy were stationed. Orders were sent for the boy always to go with the natives, and see that clean water was sent to the vessel. For two weeks, however, the stuff that came instead of water was exceedingly filthy. At length the Star put in at the place one day for water, and Tommy repaired to the pond to dip and fill his "saka." As he approached a certain mud-puddle whose dimensions were somewhat extensive, he observed some ten or twelve little urchins in it, tossing about two water casks, and engaging in all sorts of pretty antics, while a woman was washing a child, whose flesh was not perfectly pure; and another was cleaning yams. How useful such ponds are in Feejee!
"How is this?" inquired Tom. "Do you fill the casks for the vessel from this place?" "Yes," was the reply. "Why, do you not go to a clean place?" said Tom. "Because it is farther," he answered. Tommy (bless him for it!) made the boys take the casks to a pure running rivulet, where he washed and filled them with water. When he returned to the "beech de mer" house, he page 159asked the boy, who was about seventeen years of age, why he did not go and see to the water. "Oh, it is some distance to go," said the boy. In justice to the lad, however, it should be stated that he was somewhat inclined to corpulency, and had never been remarkable for his activity; besides, he was there merely for company for the man at the house, and the exertion of going to the spring once in two days was too much for him. When Tommy told Mr. W. about the water, he wrote to the lad, and sent him a bottle of the filth that we had on hand. The answer received in reply, was, "I did not know, sir, that the natives washed in the place where the casks were filled, but I knew that they washed above and below it."
The Star anchored last night at a place called Bau-Iailai. About midnight Tommy observed several natives swimming off to visit them. Not being prepared to receive and entertain so large a company, he awoke Andrew, and as there was no wind, they used their oars to some effect till they had well distanced their unwelcome visitors, who no doubt would have bitten them the next day, had they have reached the boat and found the men asleep. It is very important that all should watch in these cannibal lands.
We anchored at Bau after an absence of nine months. As soon as the tide suited, I paid a visit to my friends at Vewa, and found them all well. Several conversions have taken place since I left, and they have also had many anxious hours on account of the anger of the Bau chief, but for the last few weeks, affairs have been more quiet. It was forbidden that food should be sold to the Vewa people.
A few days since, Thakombau visited Vewa and passed nearly a day with the missionaries, but did not go near page 160either of the chiefs, and made many suspicious inquiries, such as, where do the lotu people live? where do you and your families sleep? where do your servants sleep? &c. Mr. Hunt told him the various reports in circulation. He neither affirmed nor denied them.
Vatai came to him, and addressed him in the following manner:—"I know, 'saka,'* that it is a very great 'tambu' for a woman to approach so great a chief and talk with him, but my love to you is so great that I am constrained to do it. I must tell you that you must give up your sins and love the true God, or you will go to the 'buku waqa.' God is now very angry with you, but He will forgive you if you will repent and forsake your sins. Believe me, the Feejeean gods are false, lying gods, and they cannot assist or help you." The chief heard her patiently, but vouchsafed no reply. On his return to Bau, the conversation was repeated at court. Much was said about it and the Maramas showed their contempt for the doctrine which usually finds but little favor in courts.
Returned to the bark, and found His Majesty and a Tonga chief on board. The chief observed to Mr. W. that I looked very thin. "Yes," was the reply. "I could procure no pigs or chickens for her food while we were absent, and now she lives at Vewa, where you have forbidden your people to sell food, so she must continue to look poor and thin." He asked me to give him some small beads, which I did, but he returned them, saying, "Take them to Vewa, and the Mamma will go there and see you; she will bring you a pig and some chickens, and you may then give her the beads." The Tonga chief, whose name is Tubou Toutai, is a fine looking man, and very dignified. He informed me that he had page 161spent some time in Sydney, where he had picked up some knowledge of the English language. The following is a specimen:—"Mrs. Wallis, I got one nice mat in Bau for you; spose you come Bau, I give him to you; spose you no come Bau, I come Vewa, I fetch him you."
After their departure, a canoe came from Bau loaded with damsels. Among them were two of the daughters of the late King of Rewa. We were truly glad when night came, and they departed.
|6.||Returned to Vewa, and again took possession of my little domicil. There is one custom of the papalagis which Feejeeans really love; namely, the shaking of hands. I think there is not a man, woman or child over seven years of age, that I have not been obliged to shake hands with. On the Sabbath, the congregation formed a line after the morning service to shake hands with me. I thought the ceremony had been duly passed on the shore, when I first landed. My namesake, whom I left mourning the death of her husband, is full of love for me. Elijah has thus far lived an honor to religion since his profession.|
Yesterday the Queen of Rewa and several other captives came to visit Mr. and Mrs. Jaggar, who were stationed at that place till the commencement of the war. Vatai came in to see them, accompanied by an old man, who has professed Christianity for some time past. "You have," said the man (addressing the Marama), "had the gospel preached to you, but your hearts were proud. You believed it to be true, yet you rejected it. God is very angry with you about it, and He has allowed your town to be destroyed. There is now no King of Rewa. There is now no Rewa." "I love you," said Vatai, "and what but the love that I bear to my relatives would have caused me to brave the anger of Thakombau, page 162and beg of him to 'lotu?' Your husband was killed, and my heart was full of pity and love for you, and I begged that he might 'lotu,' that you might 'lotu,' and that all might be happy. Once I did not know how to love, but the gospel teaches us to love. But now your hearts are proud. You laughed at my speech to the chief, which was made from love for you, and all my relatives in Bau ridiculed me, and would not speak to me; but I do not mind it, and I will still pray to God for you all 'with a very good mind.'" The visitors looked sober, but made no reply.
Samonunu came with the pig and fowls, as was promised. Several attendants came with her, both men and women The men brought the presents, or they would not have been in attendance.
Received a visit from the widowed queen. She is a good looking woman (for Ferjee,) of about thirty-five years of age. She appeared rather sad. I presented her with a basket and a few little notions, which pleased her much. On her departure, she took a tortoise shell ring from her finger, and presenting it to me, said, "This was my husband's love to me. He is dead; but I have others which he gave me, and this is my love to you."
We learn that the principal wife of Garenggeo, with her children, are among the captives at Bau. The mother of Revelete declares, that, although she is compelled to live in Bau, she will not be strangled when the king (her husband) dies, for she hates him, and wishes she could stick sharp pointed sticks through his flesh.
Being curious to learn the origin of the late war which terminated in the destruction of Rewa, on inquiry I received the following account.
In 1841, Garenggeo, the younger brother of the king, was detected in a love affair with the queen. The con-page 163sequence was, that he fled to Bau and attempted to engage the Bau chiefs in a war with Rewa in his favor. This they refused to do, but tried every means in their power to pacify the offended king and reconcile the brothers. The king, however, would accept of no "soro" from the capitol. At length Garenggeo, seeing that all his influence failed to excite the chiefs against Rewa, determined to return and risk the anger of his offended brother. Contrary, however, to his expectations, the king received him with favor, and Bau soon heard of the reconciliation instead of the civil war, which they expected in consequence of the return of the offender to Rewa. This led the ruling powers of Bau to suppose that the "soro" which had been offered by them for the offence of Garenggeo, had been refused out of ill-will to them.
Soon after the reconciliation of the brothers, a story was circulated that a town belonging to Bau was menaced by Garenggeo. Thakombau informed the inhabitants of their danger, and advised them to build a fence round their town, and to keep quiet. Soon after this, the Rewa chiefs were somewhat insulted by the chief of a town called Suva, belonging to Bau. This town had long been a favorite place with the king of Bau and his son; its chief, too, enjoyed their confidence. This town was attacked by Garenggeo and his warriors, but they gained no advantage. The chief retired from the place to collect a larger force, being determined to destroy Suva. Thakombau now thought it time to notice the affair. He sent a messenger, therefore, to inquire why these things were so, and to tell the chiefs of Rewa, what they already knew,—that it had always been the custom of Bau and Rewa, when a town belonging to one party had offended the other, to ask leave before engaging in hostilities with the offenders. The messenger was received page 164by the king and his brother with but little ceremony, and told that their preparations for war were to attack Kandavu, a place belonging to themselves, and it was not their purpose to trouble Suva. This was a mere pretence. The chiefs did not wish their intentions to be known lest Suva should receive aid from Bau. The messenger remained at Rewa till they were ready to sail, when he was informed that Suva was to be destroyed. He then returned to Bau, stating what he had seen and heard, and ended by advising the rulers at Bau to do as Christians did,—forgive.
Bau and Rewa were nearly related. The queen of the latter was the child of the king of Bau's sister. Many Bau women of high rank were wives of the chiefs of Rewa, and many Rewa women were wives of some of the principal chiefs of Bau, and the two places had, for many years, lived on the most friendly terms. Offences would sometimes occur, but they were speedily settled, and Bau appeared determined at this time to endure, rather than be at enmity, or engage in hostilities with those so nearly related. Suva was burned, many of its inhabitants were killed at the time, and those who escaped were pursued on the next day with a barbarity not always evinced even by cannibal savages. This made a deep impression on the minds of the chiefs of Bau; but they kept still. "Let them destroy another town before we notice this, or insult us in some other way," said the king of Bau. Thakombau went on a visit to the windward about this time, declaring that he did not wish to fight with Rewa. Bau was never known to show so much forbearance in any other affair. None could ever insult its haughty chiefs with impunity. But Rewa seemed determined to go on with the same insulting conduct, which has resulted in its destruction.page 165
About this time a serious misunderstanding took place between the king of Bau and one of his principal wives, the king of Rewa's sister. She left him and repaired to Rewa, with all her household, consisting of many of the concubines of the king, who were Rewa women. This was a serious loss to the king, who possessed only one hundred wives. The loss, however, might have been endured, had it not been followed by insult of the most aggravating kind to a Feejeean. The king gave his sister to a Rewa chief for a wife, and disposed of the other women as he pleased. The most bitter hatred now took entire possession of the heart of the old king, and he declared that Rewa should be destroyed.
On the return of Thakombau, Tanoa called his sons together, and thus addressed them:—"My sons, I have been deeply insulted by my relatives. I am old, and am not able to avenge my wrongs. Oh, that I had some one to love me, and avenge them for me! Alas! I have no son to punish my enemies!" Thakombau deeply sympathized with his father, and determined to accomplish his wishes. The sympathies of Revelete, no doubt, were enlisted on the side of his mother and her relatives, but he dared not show them. Besides, he would be but little, if any, affected by the war; being "vasu" to Rewa, he could go and come when he chose; no one would dare harm him at Rewa, although he should engage on the side of Bau.
War was now declared in its worst form. A war of the chiefs, which was not to end till the kings of one party or the other were destroyed. Messengers were sent to Rewa to take leave of its chiefs, and terminate all friendly intercourse, as is their custom on such occasions. The Rewa chiefs now desired to "soro" to Bau, but it was too late; the Rubicon was passed, and noth-page 166ing would answer but the blotting out of Rewa as an independent state. When wars are declared in Feejee, even among those who may have lived on the most friendly terms, kind feelings are laid aside, and the worst degree of enmity is exhibited. Every means is considered lawful to effect the destruction of each other. The Rewa chiefs did not suppose that Bau ever intended its destruction. They were not aware of the enmity which they had excited, and supposed that after a little skirmishing they could "soro' to Bau, receive their pardon, and live on the same friendly terms as before. In this they were mistaken, as has been shown. Preparations were now commenced for the war in Bau with great spirit. Men and arms were collected, the gods were supplicated, and the war commenced by the burning of several towns belonging to Rewa. The latter made but a faint resistance, and such was the success of Thakombau, that, had he known how to have followed it up, the war might have been ended in six months.
At one time he, with his warriors, approached quite near the town of Rewa, which threw the inhabitants into such a fright, that had an attack then been made, he would have conquered. But having been so near the place was glory enough for that time, and they returned to Bau to thank their gods and honor those who had been so successful as to kill any of the enemy during the expedition. The consequences of these delays were murders, treachery and cannibalism on both sides. For the space of two years, scarcely a week passed without a cannibal feast at Bau. A large party of Bau warriors located themselves near Rewa, and were continually harassing the town and its dependencies. If women went to fish, or men went to their plantations, they were sure to become food for their relentless foes. Rewa could do page 167but little except to act upon the defensive; neither was it in its full strength, having been weakened by civil dissensions. This state had been governed by three brothers, the eldest of whom bore the title of king; the second was Garenggeo, and the third has, of late, been called Phillips. The mother of the latter was a Bau woman of high rank, and his favorite wife was a niece of Tanoa, and sister of Vatai of Vewa.
At the commencement of the war, Phillips took part with neither party; but, subsequently, having discovered that his eldest brother, the king, had been holding criminal intercourse with his favorite wife, he nearly killed her and joined Bau. He resided at a town called Nuque, quite near Rewa, where he had a fine opportunity to assist Bau. Thakombau promised Phillips that when Rewa was destroyed, he would rebuild it and make him its king. Thus the war was prosecuted with vigor on the part of Bau, and with marked success, too, though with the loss of some men, a great expense for food, presents to warriors and offerings to their deities. Some of the towns connected with Rewa displayed some courage. There was one called Toketoke that resisted and defended itself nobly, till wearied by watching, and exhausted by hunger, the people turned to Bau. Several other towns joined Bau in the same manner, while others remained faithful to Rewa till the last. There is a district called Nakalu, that belonged to Rewa. Its chief is of high rank, and governed about ten towns. Thakombau sent to this chief, promising that if he would join Bau, when Rewa was destroyed he would give his sister to his son for a wife. This brilliant offer was not to be rejected. The chief joined his forces with Bau, and such was now its strength, that it could at any time have conquered its enemies, had it not lacked one important page 168quality, namely, courage. The war has now terminated, as has been shown, by treachery. As it is the practice of warriors to disguise their faces with paint, it is difficult to recognize one from another. Of the four hundred inhabitants that were massacred when Rewa was destroyed, two hundred were supposed to have been murdered by Rewa men.
After Bau had accomplished its designs, Phillips reminded its chiefs of their promise to rebuild Rewa and make him king. "By and by," they replied. "Wait a little." Phillips sent to several towns, saying, "Come to me and 'soro.' Your 'soro' shall be received and your pardon granted." Many came, and their "soro" was accepted; after which they were murdered and their bodies sent to Bau. So great was their supply of manimal food, they were obliged to send to Somosomo for a reinforcement of cannibals to partake with them.
Thus the famous war between these two powerful districts, which has been prosecuted for three years, is now, to all appearance, ended, and Thakombau has shown to his father that he loved him, and has avenged his insults. It is said that the old king cannot consume the quantity of his favorite food that he would like, on account of poor teeth. This must be a great annoyance to him.
Mrs. Jaggar has related to me the following speech of my namesake, which shows that she has improved some during my absence. "I once hated the 'lotu,' and I said in my heart, I never will join the 'lolu.' When the missionaries passed my house, I would tell the big dog to bark at them. The chief killed Nalela at Bau, and then I wished to be killed too. I knew that his spirit had gone to the 'buka-waqa,' and I wished to go there with him. I was very angry that no one would kill me, and I said in my heart, I will kill myself. I will page 169not 'lotu 'and go to heaven, where I cannot see Nalela. I thought about my husband all the time, and for many days I would not take food. At length I ate some food, and promised that I would 'lotu' when my days of mourning had ended, but still I hated it. After they had ended, however, I 'lotued' because I had promised, and then I prayed to Jesus, not because I loved to pray to Him, but I knew it was the fashion for 'lotus' to pray. After a little while, I began to love prayer. When I prayed I felt less unhappy, and I began to think more about Jesus Christ than of Nalela, and then I prayed very often that Jesus would make me good, that I might go to heaven and be forever happy. Jesus has made me see how foolish my former doings were, and I now hate my wicked conduct. I pray now with 'a good mind,' that I may always love Jesus Christ and be good." This Marama has been a very wicked woman. Having rank and influence, she was always ready to assist in the wicked customs of her people. She lias assisted in strangling many women, and it has been shown with what savage delight she exulted in the vengeance which had been taken of those who had murdered her relative. The tigress has now changed to a lamb. What has effected this change?—the gospel. Oh! ye enemies of missions, look at this woman as she was, and as she now is, in the full exhibition of the peaceful and lovely graces of the Christian, and shut your mouths! Put your hands in your purses, and contribute of your abundance. Dismiss all your fears about disturbing the minds of the heathen with the gospel. Believe me; the Saviour never would have employed missionaries if there had been no necessity for them. Send-them the gospel, and civilization follows in its train. As soon as the natives of these, isles renounce heathenism, they are page 170anxious to obtain cloth to cover their persons,—their horrible feasts are looked upon with disgust,—they forgive their enemies—become industrious, &c.
It is very well to sit at home in our parlors and talk about the heathen; their very few wants; their happiness in the enjoyment of their rites; their freedom from the cares and perplexities of civilized life; the waste of property expended in sending the gospel to them; the beautiful country they enjoy (many of them). There is poetry in this; but go and see them in their degradation, and your language, if you love the truth, will be changed,—I say if you are lovers of the truth. We know its enemies have always written in praise of heathenism, and endeavored (those that have been eye-witnesses,) to lay upon the shoulders of the missionaries the vices which they themselves have so abundantly dispensed among the heathen that have been cursed by their visits. I do not mean to say that there are none among the ministers of the gospel who are bad men. I believe there are such; but their sins are not long concealed, and, on discovery, the good cast out from among them those who are unworthy. It should always be remembered, that among the twelve disciples of our Lord, there was one deceiver. There always were deceivers walking to and fro throughout the whole habitable globe;—those in religion, politics, love, friendship, &c.