Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

he should reveal the certainty to no gued and sat on ineffectually till the : man living. I have only taken notice Armada came and the discussion ended, i of so much as he has revealed, and and the talk of restitution was over. the same I have seen to be weighed, Meanwhile opinion varied about registered, and packed. And to ob- Drake's own doings as it has varied serve her Majesty's commands for the since. Elizabeth listened, spellbound ten thousand pounds, we agreed he to his adventures, sent for him to Lonshould take it out of the portion that don again, and walked with him. pubwas landed secretly, and to remove the licly about the parks and gardens. She same out of the place before my son gave him a second ten thousand pounds. Henry and I should come to the weigh- The Pelican was sent round to Depting and registering of what was left; ford ; a royal banquet was held on and so it was done, and no creature board, Elizabeth attended and Drake living by mě made privy to it but him. was knighted. Mendoza clamored for self; and myself no privier to it than the treasure in the Tower to be given you may perceive by this.

up to him ; Walsingham wished to “I see nothing to charge Mr. Drake give it to the Prince of Orange ; further than he is inclined to charge Leicester and his party in the Council, ' himself, and withal I must say he is who had helped to fit Drake out, inclined to advance the value to be thought it ought to be divided among delivered to her Majesty, and seeking themselves, and unless Mendoza lies : in general to recompense all men that they offered to share it with him if he have been in the case dealers with would agree to a private arrangement. him. As I dare take an oath, he will Mendoza says he answered that he rather diminish his own portion than would give twice as much to chastise leave any of them unsatisfied. And such a bandit as Drake. Elizabeth for his mariners and followers I have thought it should be kept as a captured

here as eye-witness, and have pawn in the game, and so in fact it heard with my ears, such certain signs remained after the deductions which of good-will as I cannot yet see that we have seen had been made. any of them will leave his company, Drake was lavish of his presents. The whole course of his voyage hath He presented the queen with a diashowed him to be of great valor ; but mond cross and a coronet set with my hap has been to see some particu- splendid emeralds. He gave Bromley, lars, and namely in this discharge of the lord chancellor, eight hundred dolhis company, as doth assure me that he lars' worth of silver plate, and as is a man of great government, and that much more to other members of the : by the rules of God and his book, so Council. The queen wore her coronet : as proceeding on such foundation his on New Year's day; the chancellor doings cannot but prosper."

was content, to decorate his sideboard The result of it all was that deduc- at the cost of the Catholic king. Burghtions were made from the capture ley and Sussex declined the splendid equivalent to the property which Drake temptation ; they said they could acand Hawkins held themselves to have cept no such precious gifts from a man been treacherously plundered of at San whose fortune had been made by plunJuan de Ulloa, with perhaps other der. liberal allowances for the cost of re- Burghley lived to see better into covery. An account of part of whạt Drake's value. Meanwhile, what now remained was then given to Mendoza. are we, looking back over our history, It was pot returned to him or to Philip, to say of these things, – the Channel but was laid up in the Tower till the privateering; the seizure of Alya’s final settlement of Philip's and the army money; the sharp practice of queen's claims on each otủer — the Hawkins with the Queen of Scots and cost, for one thing, of the rebellion in King Philip ; or this amazing performIreland. Commissioners met and ar-lance of Sir Francis Drake in a vessel

LIVING AGE. VOL. LXXXIV. 4343

seen

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

no larger than a second-rate yacht of a / war, and face the certainty of being moderu noble lord ?

hanged if they were taken. Yes ; no Resolution, daring, professional skill, doubt by the letter of the law of naall historians allow to these men ; but, tions Drake and Hawkins were corsairs like Burghley, they regard what they of the same stuff as Ulysses, as the did as piracy, not much better, if at all rovers of Norway. But the common better, than the later exploits of Mor- sense of Europe saw through the form gan and Kidd. So cried the Catholics to the substance which lay below it, who wished Elizabeth's ruin ; so cried and the instinct of their countrymen Lope de Vega and King Philip. In gave them a place among the fighting milder language, the modern philoso- heroes of England, from which I do pher repeats the unfavorable verdict, not think they will be deposed by the rejoices that he lives in an age when eventual verdict of history. such doings are impossible, and apologizes faintly for the excesses of an imperfect age. May I remind the philosopher that we live in an age when

From The Nineteenth Century. other things have also happily become

THROUGH THE KHYBER PASS. impossible, and that if he and his LATE in the evening on the 2nd of friends were liable when they went December, I left Lahore by the mail to abroad for their summer tours to be Peshawar, an eighteen hours' journey. snapped up by the familiars of the In- When I awoke next morning near quisition, whipped, burnt alive, or sent Rawal Pindi the train was winding to the galleys, he would perhaps think slowly among low hills, which grew more leniently of any measures by higher as the morning advanced. which that respectable institution and About noon it glided out of a cutting its masters might be induced to treat into Attock station, and we

saw in philosophers with greater considera- front across its path a deep valley betion ?

tween sloping irregular rocks, which Again, remember Doctor Johnsou's hemmed in on each side the grey swirlwarning, Beware of cant. In that in- ing waters of a swift river. The train tensely serious century men were more crossed the valley by a bridge high occupied with the realities than the above the stream, giving us glimpses forms of things. By encouraging re- on either hand of the gorge of the Inbellion in England and Ireland, by dus. The stream flows between grey burning so many scores of poor English rocks which rise on each side in broken, seamen and merchants in fools' coats stony slopes to the tops of the hills, a at Seville, the king of Spain had given mile from the river and a thousand feet Elizabeth a hundred occasions for de- above it. The hills are unmitigated claring war against him. Situated as rock, bare and bleak. Here and there she was, with so many disaffected a sage-green bush dots the hillside, but Catholic subjects, she could not begin it only emphasizes the general barrena war on such a quarrel. She had to ness of the scene. Across the bridge use such resources as she had, and of the train turns to the right and goes up these resources the best was a splendid the valley for a mile or two, giving us race of men, who were not afraid to do glimpses of the river and of the great for her at their own risk what commis- bridge. As we near the station at sioned officers would and might have Khairabad we look across the river at justly done had formal war been de- the old Mogul fort of Attock, its high, clared, men who defeated the national loopholed walls and battlements on a enemy with materials conquered from cliff a hundred feet above the water. himself, who were devoted enough to Below, to the left of it, is a wide plain dispense with the personal security stretching as far as the eye can reach, which the sovereign's commission like a vast swamp, with one or two would have extended to prisoners of silvery bands of water, the winter

[ocr errors]

streams of the Indus approaching the only one in the town. Every one looks gorge. Beyond Khairabad the railway at you. There is no staring and no leaves the Indus and follows the valley rudeness, but you feel the eyes. The of its tributary, the Kabul River. At looks of the first half-dozen men you four o'clock we pass the citadel of pass, as they sit in their shops or stand Peshawur, crowning a rock that juts in the street, give you a new and up from the plain, and a few minutes strange sensation. You straighten later the train stops at Peshawai Can- yourself and hold your head up, with a toument, the Ultima Thule of British resolve, of which you are hardly couIndia.

scious till afterwards, that if a knife is The cantonment, at an Indian town, plunged into your back you will not means the place where the English Ainch. The eyes about you suggest live. The native town is usually en- that if there were no cantonment, no closed by high walls and accessible only others to ask for an account of you, by a few gates ; it is brimful of people, your throat would be cut and your who crowd its bazaars or shop streets. corpse thrown away, and that the peoQuite outside the town and a mile or ple in the street would look on without two away is the cantonment, an un-moving. You immediately feel that walled district, where each house there is a responsibility in being an stands in its own inclosure or com- Englishman ; you are a representative pound, and where the regiments, Brit- of your race, and all that you do and ish or native, are quartered in "lines" say must be worthy of the position. or rows of huts. The cantonment usu- The first duty is to vot mind the eighty ally has wide, well-kept roads, with a thousand people in Peshawar nor anygrassy margiu and avenues of fine thing they may do. Those first five trees, giving it the appearance of a minutes in the Peshawar bazaar reveal great park. The English visitor, if he to you the secret of British power in stays with friends, might be a week the East. It is impossible without without seeing the native town at all, utter fearlessuess.1 unless his curiosity prompted an excur

I had been advised to see the view sion in search of it. There is always from a watch tower in the fort. As I in the cantonnient a club, with a ladies' stepped on to the roof my first glance winy (unless the ladies have a gym- was along the railway line towards Atkhana or club of their own), and, be- lock and the valley of the Kabul River, sides the various parade grounds, a by which I had come. This valley was polo ground or a tennis court, so that a the only opening in a circle of mounvisitor bent only on amusement has tains surrounding the spacious plain. plenty of resources.

To the left the plain would have The town gate of Peshawar is a mile seemed endless but that beyond it were from the cantonment, and the morning visible giant mountains one behind after my arrival I drove in with no another, and above and beyond them companion but a native interpreter. all the cold, pale snows of the Hindu Peshawar, with its mud and wood Kush. Turning round, I found myself houses, its latticed windows, and its facing a semicircle of black, rugged multitude of men, is infinitely pictur- bills about fifteen miles away, that esque. But the impression of the first visit upon an Englishman is not due to 1 The undoubted hostility of part, at least, of the quaint appearance of the houses nor sentative of any general feeling in India. But I

the population of Peshawar is, of course, not repre to the Eastern dress of the inhabitants. have seen the same expression and had the same There are about eighty thousand na- feelings resulting from it in Multan and Lucknow. tives in the city. As soon as you are marks of a bitter conflict : Multan of the murder through the gate and inside the walls of Agnew and Anderson and the subsequent siego, you are among them. Not another and Lucknow of the siege and relief of the resta Englishman is to be seen, and possibly same expression, unmistakable, on the faces of

dency. I was startled, however, to observe the enough you are, at the moment, the Bengalis at Calcutta.

[ocr errors]

a

Each of these cities was the scene, and bears tho

66

seemed to rise straight up out of the The Jellallabad basin belongs to the plain and shut it in like a wall. No ameer and the Peshawar basin to outlets were visible, but the directions Great Britain, but the Khyber block of of the passes that cross the hills were mountains belongs to the tribes who pointed out by a Sikh policeman : to inhabit it — independent Afghans or, the south the Kohat Pass, to the west in border language, Pathans. These the Bazaar Valley and the Khyber, to Khyber Pa ans can raise but scaut the right of which the Kabul River crops from their native rocks. They issues from the mountains. The flat cannot “live on their holdings,” and ground at our feet is British territory ; must needs have some other resource but the mountains all round are Af- by which to eke out their sustenance. ghan. Here in the plain the queen's This additional source of revenue is peace is kept ; there in the mountains the pass. From time immemorial they live Pathan tribes who acknowledge bave taken toll from all who go neither queen nor ameer. We are at through. Being poor, uncivilized, and the edge of the empire.

accustomed to fight, their methods of The Khyber Pass is generally thought levying what they conceive to be their of as the northernmost gate in a great due are rough and irregular. But from mountain wall separating India from their point of view the dues are their Afghanistan. In reality it is the small traditional, inalienable right. They gate through an outer wall, leading into are, however, very businesslike people. an inclosure, the plain of Jellallabad. Their point is to receive the money. Beyond this is the real wall with its They are by no means disposed to ingreat gates, the passes from Jellallabad sist on rough modes of collection. Acto Kabul.

cordingly they are open to contract for Put three basins in a row, and where the tolls. During the first Afghan war two of them touch each other break they took a rent in lieu of pass dues down the edges a little. Call the from the British, and caused trouble middle basin that of Jellallabad, the only when they believed they were left-band one that of Kabul, and the being defrauded. Since the last Afright-hand one that of Peshawar. The ghan war the same arrangement has broken-down rim between Peshawar been renewed. Each tribe receives an and Jellallabad is the Khyber range, a annual payment from the British govblock of hills lwenty miles through ernment, in return for which the pass from basin to basin and over five thou- is free to all authorized travellers on sand feet high. The broken-down, certain days in the week. There is double rim between Jellallabad and also a modern device by which the Kabul is a mass of mountains (the good relation between the British govKarkacha and Kurd Kabul ranyes) ernment and the tribes is increased. some ten thousand feet high and fifty A corps of troops called the Khyber miles through from basin to basin. Rifles is recruited from the tribesmen, Except at these two broken-down ends and occupied to guard the pass on the the rim of the Jellallabad basin is made open days and to supply escorts to carup all round of much higher and prac- avans and travellers. The pay of the tically impassable mountains. Accord- men, of course, finds its way to their ingly all traffic between Peshawar and villages, and the whole population Kabul must go through the Jellalla- grows accustomed to a sort of respect bad valley, getting in or coming out for British authority. All these arthrough the Khyber range. The range rangements are in the hands of Colonel has only one road through it. There is Warburton, whose official title is “ Poa gorge through which the Kabul River litical Oficer, Khyber Pass." His poforces its way, and there are patlıs, dif- sition as paymaster to the tribes makes ficult, high, and tortuous, but the only him a sort of half-recognized king. He road by which traffic is possible follows frequently settles their disputes, and the Khyber Pass.

by the exercise of a delicate tact and of

[ocr errors]

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

a na

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

an unusual personal influence has for | has for some time commanded these many years kept the whole Khyber border levies. His fine, soldierlike: district a thousand square miles of appearance and courteous bearing make hills — in comparative order. The cost him a favorite with the British of Peof the whole business -the rent-charge shawar, and it was a pleasure to learn in lieu of dues, the Khyber Rifles, and that he would accompany us to Landi Colonel Warburton - does not exceed Kotal. At Jamrood we were joined by 0001. a year.

a third Englishman, Mr. Walton, and It was my great good fortune when found waiting for us an escort at Peshawar to be Colonel Warburtou's tive mounted officer and two or three guest, and he very kindly made ar- troopers - horses for the colonels, and rangements to take me through the dogcarts (called tum-tums) for the EnKhyber Pass himself. On Monday the glish travellers and their native ser5th of December, at eight in the morn- vants. The baggage had been sent ing, we left Peshawar in a ghari, a forward on mules, and we started alrough two-horse cab. The road leads most immediately. From Jamrood the across a flat plain, with few trees and road rises very gently for about three not much grass or cultivatiou. As we miles, over a belt of undulating ground emerged from the shady roads of the at the foot of the bills. " It leads into a cantonment into the open, it was a glo- deep bay in the mountains, at the end rious, clear, bright morning, and the of which the ascent begins. In a few air crisp and cool. In front and on minutes we were winding our way either hand were the mountains, encir- through the most rough-and-tumble cling the plain. On the left they were hills I had ever seen. The strata'stood low and distant; then, crossing our bolt upright, the hills being carved out front, higher and nearer ; and again, of them. The road, which is well laid to the right, lower because further out and has a regular ascent without away. In front was a peak, Tartara, extravagant windings, mounts steadily which I took to be the beight of Sad- for three or four miles, when it emerges dleback or of Cader Idris, but it is as on to an irregular ridge, the margin high above where we as Ben of an airy upland plateau, wild and Nevis above Loch Linnhe. Gradually broken, shut in by black, jagged hills we saw behind the low range to the beyond; but wide open to the sky. north, which might be twenty miles We looked down on a little valley at away, a few higher and more distant our feet, with a streamlet, a tiny patch summits. Then above their rims was of green, and a primitive mill. It is here and there a line of snowy peaks, Lala China, the “red mill ” where, in far, far away. We stayed a few min. 1878, Cavagnari met Shere Ali's officer, utes at Hari Singh, where is Colonel and received the reply which was the Warburton's official residence, the immediate occasion of the Afghan war. headquarters of the Khyber Rifles, in a We move on through the valley, and fort, and the frontier. About ten we ascend for another mile or two to a reached Jamrood, where there is an- second ridge, from which other fort or castle of light brown mud, straight before us the fort of Ali a caravanserai or inclosed courtyard, Masjid. Imagine Helvellyn and Skidand a parade ground. Here the Kly- daw, carded into the utmost possible ber Rifles, a fine body of men in khaki ruggedness and steepness, planted facuniform with knickerbockers, were being each other, with just a quarter of a ing inspected by their cémmanding of- mile between, and drop into the interficer, Lieutenant-Colonel Aslam Khan. val a hill like the great pyramid, but Aslam Khan is an Afghan prince of steeper and twice as high, with the the Saddozai family, i.e., the royal fam- battlements of a fort on its flattened ily that reigned before the present Ba- top; that is the first view of Ali rakzai dynasty. He has passed most Masjid. We descend a few yards to a of his life in the British service, and hut by the stream, and find ourselves

were

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

we

see

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

ot ulu'

101

2011

« VorigeDoorgaan »