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A YOUNG ROVER;
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND.
Mithi One unburrt Illustratians.
SEELEY, JACKSON, AND HALLIDAY,
54, FLEET STREET.
A YOUNG ROVER;
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND.
WHAT! I'm to tell you a story, am I ? And the story is to be all
about myself, is it ? What I was like as a boy-what I did as a
boy-where I went, and what scrapes I got into, as a boy.
It's to be all about myself then. I, I, I, from beginning to end.
People say that one should not talk much about oneself; don't
you know that, my boys and girls ?
Oh! but you are sure that fathers and mothers may talk to
their own dear children. That's it, is it ? Well, and perhaps you
are right. So, if you like, I will just begin about myself and my
I can go a good way back in my recollections, I can tell you;
for I can remember myself, a very small boy indeed, when I used
to sit on my dear mammy's knee, after she had given me my bath,
and listen to my little sister, Katie, saying her evening hymns
before she lay down in bed, and then I was laid in beside her, and
we kissed each other and went to sleep. Katie was about a year
and a half older than I was; and a nice fat little girl she was. I
know that people used to laugh at her for having such fat little
hands; but I liked them.
6 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
Katie and I loved each other very much; but we soon
left off being tiny children, and had to learn lessons together.
Katie was always ahead of me, because she was older. But
there was another reason too; and that was that she was a steady-
going little maiden, and stuck to her books, while I was all for
play, and for going after fun, and looking out for adventures.
That's a long word, isn't it? for you little ones; but, I'll answer
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 7
for it, even little Dicky knows what it means. When I was a
boy it was often in my mouth, and I used sometimes to tease
I-- 7,--- ,
Katie because she did not care about such things, and was always
afraid that I should get into scrapes.
One day I remember well meeting her going out with nurse
8 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
and a cousin, to take some soup in a can to a poor sick woman.
There were some poor ragged boys on the common; and she was
talking kindly to them. Poor Katie did not half like it when I
called her a little goose, and said, Come and have some fun';
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 9
nurse does not want you." I was a bad boy to talk so to her; but
I wasn't always unkind to her, and Katie and I were great chums.
There were other beings that I cared for too, though; and
There were other beings that I cared for too, though; and
one was my dog, Caesar. We were great friends, he and I. I am
afraid that some poor people rather envied the nice scraps
10 A YOUNG ROVER.
that they saw my dog eat. And then I used to teach him all
sorts of tricks. He was a clever little dog, was Caesar. Do you
laugh at my way of talking ? Never mind; we'll be more par-
ticular as we get older. -
After all, Casar was only a dog; and though he certainly was
great fun, yet he was not to be compared with Katie-my sister
Although I could be saucy to her sometimes, as boys will,
you know, yet I can tell you I thought a great deal of Katie.
It was strange how we raced and topped each other by turns.
For instance, when I got to be a certain height, then I almost
stopped growing for a bit, and she went on so fast that soon she
looked almost like a young woman, and very pretty I thought her.
She was very like a young aunt, after whom she was named. But
what was better was that she was so good-natured, and to keep
me quiet, she would often read stories to me. She liked reading,
and I liked being read to, a great deal better than reading to myself.
I was a lazy fellow with my books at that time; and I'm afraid
that people were too kind to me, and let me have my own way
Our Aunt Katie was very kind, I know; for she used to look
over all sorts of books to find just the right stories for me; and
when I was in a fidgety mood, and would tramp in and out,
kicking up my heels, and scuffling with my feet; then Aunt
Katie would say, "Now, Will, if you'll only be quiet, I'll read
you a nice story."
I was such a boy for stories !
You shall hear some of those that I remember best presently;
but I must tell you first where Aunt Katie used often to sit, and
read either to herself or to us; and that was out in a nice sort of a
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12 A YOUNG ROVEB.
park that was close to. my father's home, and under the shade of
a fine large tree. There was a little bit of water there, too; and
in it grew all sorts of pretty, wild water-plants. Sometimes I
used to amuse myself with picking them, and then picking them
to pieces, just because I must be doing something. I was such a
restless sort of boy, you see !
I used to say that I would be a soldier some day; and my Aunt
Katie, who was very much afraid that I should keep my word, looked
up some horrid stories to frighten me. She used to say, "It's all
very fine for you to talk about glory, my dear Will; but I can tell
you that you look much handsomer with two legs and two arms
on than you would with only one of either; and how would you
feel if you had shot off some other young fellow's'leg or arm,
and he had to go like that for the rest of his life ?
"Come, now I'm going to read to you about the taking of a
thing called a redoubt, when the French were once fighting with
the Russians, and see if it sounds very nice."
I'd rather fight the French than any other fellows," I
"Your father says we have no business to hate the French, nor
to hate anybody," she answered. The French used. once to be
always threatening to come across the sea and fight us; and if
they had done so, the men and boys would have had to fight to
defend the women and children. But the French do not talk so
now; and we ought to be very glad that there's peace and not war
now-a-days, and we ought to wish to be kind to the French, as
well as to every one else, Willy; you know we ought. Poor
Frenchmen don't feel any more comfortable with bullets under
their skins than Englishmen do; and I hope you'll never be a
soldier and fight them."
14 A YOUNG ROVER.
"Ah! Aunt Katie," I said, "you're only a young lady; you
don't know anything about fighting. But just read me that
story now, like a good creature. I'm very lazy to-day, and you
know I like being read to very much. It's jolly, when a fellow is
So then she read something like this, only of course I can't
remember the very words.
There was a young man sent out to fight the Russians. He
was hardly a man-more like a boy than a man; but he was
obliged to be a soldier, whether he liked it or not. Nearly all
Frenchmen are. And he had a rough sort of man for his captain
at first, a very big man, with a queer sort of voice.
His queer voice was caused by his having had a bullet shot
right through him many years before.
Well, this captain rather made fun of him at first, because
he was so young; and he thought he would be afraid and run away;
and he was afraid, too-very much afraid at nights, when he was
lying down to sleep; only, of course, he would not seem to be
I should think not," said I.
"When they attacked the fort, the captain was killed, and all
his company, except six men and this young lad. Now I am
going to read the young Frenchman's own words.
At last I heard the cry of victory, and, the smoke clearing
off, I saw that the ground of the redoubt was quite hidden by dead
bodies and blood. The colonel was lying bleeding on a broken
cannon. "Colonel," I said, you are badly wounded." "Done
for, my good fellow," he answered, but the redoubt is
I must say I shuddered a little when she read how some of the
AFTER THE FIGHT.
16 A YOUNG OVER.
poor fellows were wounded, or even blown to pieces; still, I could
not let Katie think that my mind was one bit altered.
Shall I tell you another story which Aunt read to me ?
It is about a young man named Hoche, who was first a
printer's boy, then a chorister, then a groom in the French royal
stables-all that before he was sixteen; and then he went into
He was so sharp, and so quick, and so eager to learn and
to do his best, that every one said he would be a great man
It was that sad time in France when they treated their king
and queen so badly, and at last cut off their heads, and said they
would not have any kings or queens again, but would rule the
country without them. V
Then they got into war; and this young man, Hoche, was
sent with two armies to fight the Prussians; and he beat them,
and then he wrote a history of the battle to a friend of his, almost
before it was well over.
And after that he wrote and asked to have only one army to
command, because, he said, that two armies were more than he
could manage, as he was only twenty-six years old.
Poor fellow! he died only three years afterwards, and some
people thought he was poisoned.
Aunt Katie read about that young man and his battles one
hot summer day; and I lay on the grass, and dreamed that I was
going to be a soldier, and thought that I should be a great man,
too. And when I woke up I told her my dream; and she said
that if I meant to be a great man, I must take to my books and
work hard; for that even soldiers had to study, and Hoche studied
18 A YOUNG ROVER.
Then she turned over some leaves in her book and said, Now
you have had enough about battles. Let's get another book about
some other kinds of great men. Don't you think that it would be
better to learn how to build fine castles, or cathedrals, or palaces,
and get to be great in that way, Willy ?"
Why, I should have to draw, then," I said; and you know,
Aunt, that I hate drawing."
Well, couldn't you try to be a very clever doctor, then; or. a
lawyer, like your uncle, who has to go into court and make
Oh, no, no, no I was quite disgusted. I would not be
either one or the other. I should have to sit still and read so
much. My sister Katie knew that I liked going about, and having
something happen, something to talk about, so she began to think
and to suggest one thing after another.
Poor Katie! she did not know how to suit my taste. I could
not be pleased at all. But at last she said-
"Oh, I've thought of something-you must be a traveller, and
go and see all sorts of places and all kinds of queer things; only
I don't see how you could get any money that way." .
Pooh Katie; you know that father has got plenty of money,"
I cried. "He'll give me some, I know. But, come, let's look
at your picture, and then Aunt will read about it. Oh, a fire !
What an enormous fire Why, it's a whole city in a blaze "
"Yes; it's Moscow; and once on a time it was the chief
city in all Russia. And look, there is the famous first Napoleon.
He seemed to go on conquering as if he'd have all the world, this
book says, and he felt so proud when he had marched to this old
city with his army. And he thought that all the people would
come and bow down to him. But they were so afraid of the French
L*,, ~ ':'"mz;
THE BURNTING OF MOSCOW,;
20 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
soldiers, that when he came nearly all the people had run away.
And the army and its general must have felt silly, I think, marching
through empty streets; don't you ? Then the fire broke out, and
they could not stop it; and soon all the fine city was in a blaze."
We were called away from our reading and talking just then,
to see some friends who had come to our house; and very soon
after lhoard that there-was a great row about something going on
in twiievillhge, so of course I went to see that! -g g
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 21
Anything to be moving and going, and doing something! Oh,
dear! what a boy I was! never still! I'm afraid I was spoilt.
I'm afraid that Katie spoilt me I wanted a little contradiction
from somebody. Perhaps from my father; he'd have been the
right person. But then I was his only boy.
22 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
At any rate, you won't be surprised to hear that I was very
fond of hunting. Oh! I thought that splendid fun And I went
out with the huntsman pretty often, and felt thoroughly happy--
jolly, as you boys call it-when we were tearing along, dogs, and
horses, and men, and boys, after some unfortunate fox that had
been robbing the poultry yards.
I liked poultry myself very much indeed, but then, of course, hens
and chickens were meant for young Will Waller and his sister; it
never could be allowed that a fox should feed on such dainties.
So we caught him, and killed him, and then went home as
hungry as could be, and in great spirits about it. I should have
liked a hunt every day, but, you see, I could not have one; and so
I had to find some other kind of amusement.
And a very pleasant kind came in my way just about this
time. I'll tell you what it was. I made the acquaintance of a
nice old man, who had been a sailor, and had made lots of voyages
in his time, and knew about all sorts of countries, and had read
the histories of them, too. So it was a very delightful thing to go
and spend an afternoon in his room, and look over his treasures,
and listen to his talk.
Well, that was just what I did. And sometimes he would get
his violin down from where it hung on the wall, and play me a
tune. Sometimes he would try to teach me to play a bit myself,
and I did get a little notion of it. Then at other times he would
get out his map, and show me on it where he had been, and what
sort of people lived here, and there, and there. /
He was a lone old man, but so kind and good that he had a
pretty good number of visitors, and they were all fond of him, I
think. I know I was, and I would have done anything to help
him that I could, if ever I knew that he was in trouble.
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 23
He told me lots of interesting things, and always let me go
and see him when I liked. But he was very plain with me too,
and he used to say, "Now, my lad, you can't always have your own
way in the world. You must look out and see what you ought to
24 A YOUNd ROVER; OR,
do, and what is right and proper for you; or else, if you don't, you
will never be good for anything."
Oh," I said, "but father has got plenty of money; and what
is the good of it if I mayn't have any fun ?"
"Who has ever said that you were not to have any fun ?"
returned old Mr. Parkinson-that was the name of my old man.
Why shouldn't you do right and have fun too ? There's plenty
of it that will come in your way if you are not always looking out
for it. But when boys only live for fun, why, then it seems to
What else should a fellow of my age live for ? I answered,
What else, lad ? cried the old man. "Why, to do your
work in the world Don't you think you've got any work of your
own to do ? Do you suppose that you were put here just to be for
ever kicking up your heels and getting in every one's way ? "
Am I in your way, Mr. Parkinson ? I asked, rather in a
huff. "Becaiuse I -iame to hear that story that you were going to
tell me about how the Spaniards got Mexico; but if I'm in your
way, I'll go'"
"No, you are not in my way at all, young master; and I'm
quite ready to tell you that story, if you like," returned the old
man, with a smile and a look that seemed to say, "But I've got a
good deal more to say to you about your own ways, one of these
That lecture did not come just then, however; but instead, I
had the pleasure of hearing how Cortes, a wild young man of whom
his father could not make a lawyer, got leave to go off and join
those of his countrymen, the Spaniards, who were discovering and
conquering North America; and how at last he conquered Mexico,
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 25
O E II
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COTES IN DANGR._
26 A YOUNG BOVEB; OR,
where a very curious set of people lived-people who could build
fine palaces, and who had fine gold and silver things, and kept up
a great deal of state and show, and yet all the time were savages
in some things, and cannibals too. I mean by that, that they
actually eat the men whom they took prisoners in war. And
Cortes got into a deal of trouble sometimes, and once he was
nearly killed by the Indians.
Mr. Parkinson said that it would have been better if he had
stopped at home and not gone to steal other people's countries;
but I suppose he was mad after adventure, just as I was, and could
not keep quiet.
I remember now my old friend told me that nobody can keep
out of mischief unless they know what is their own and what is
not; and he said, too, that no one is fit to govern a country until
he has learnt how to govern himself. That was a hint for me, of
course; and I pocketed it, and thought to myself that, some day,
perhaps, I'd use it, but not just then.
My old friend told me lots of these stories about conquering
and taking possession of newly-found-out countries, and how the
Portuguese and Spaniards were the first of the natives of Europe
that went hunting for new lands.
When the continent of America was first found out, cannot you
fancy, children, how all the boys would dream of voyages, and
conquests, and getting whole countries for themselves by just
fighting and driving away a few Indians, poor souls Ah! if I
had been living in those days, I think I should have wanted to be
off almost before I got into breeches-I was always so fond of
roaming and looking out for adventures, as I said before. But,
you see, all those countries were discovered before I was born;
so I had to be content with hearing about such things. And
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 27
DEATH OF FRANCISCO DE ALMEIDA IN SALDANHA BAY.
..OF N S.... S -DAN A-B-
28 A YOUNG ROVER; OB,
it was a great thing to me to have such a friend as old Mr.
I remember, though, that his stories were not all about the
new countries, for he said that those Portuguese got hold of a part
of India, too, which had been known for ever so long; and that they
even went beyond, as far as Cochin China. He told me about one
poor fellow, who got killed somewhere near the Cape of Good
Hope in a fight with the negroes. He thought that he was doing
his country good, that young man, whose name was Francisco,
and he was related to the king, who was very proud of him, and
very proud to hear that Portugal was getting so many colonies in
foreign parts; so when the news of his death came, all Portugal
went into mourning for him. I knew that I felt very sorry for
him when I heard the story; and my old friend said, Now that
young fellow was called a great patriot in those days, by which
people meant that he was a great lover of his country. He went
to seek what he called glory, not so much for himself, as most
of them did, but for his native land. But how does it strike you,
my lad ? Do you think that men have a right to go and take
possession of any country that they can get, turning out or
killing ever so many of the poor natives, and all just to make their
own country greater ? "
Of course not," I said; for I could see that plain enough.
"But," returned my old friend, "those adventurers thought
that they would like, not only the new lands, but, like you, Master
Willy, what' they called the fun of getting them. So off they
went-just as you seem to think you may, young gentleman,
after anything you want! And they got the countries, and
often were very cruel to the poor people who had lived in them
all their lives long, and of many of them they made slaves. That
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 29
[- -_. .C=-.. ...
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BALBDA TAKING POSSESSION OF THE SOUTH SEAS.
i~ "("' 5 i il;,J
33 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
is not a true kind of glory according to my way of thinking. You
might seek for a better kind than that."
Well, but," said I suddenly, our country has colonies too.
How did we get them, Mr. Parkinson ? "
Some of them very much in the same way as the Spaniards
and Portuguese got theirs, I'm afraid, my lad," returned the old
man. It was the notion of the times that any lands found to be
inhabited by uncivilized heathen might be taken by those who called
themselves Christians; and then generally the poor creatures had
to turn Christians whether they liked it or not. But I don't think
the English people forced them as the Spaniards and Portuguese did.
We had got the Bible, and knew that Christians could not be made
in that way, which the Spaniards didn't. And then all our colonies
were not got in that way. Sometimes a few of our people have
been living quietly in a country; and then all at once down have
come the natives upon them, and they have been obliged to fight
to defend themselves, and force the others back and make them
give up some of their country to make up for what they had
taken; and now and then it has happened that our Queen has
been invited by the natives of some land or other to take it for
her own, because they thought she could manage it better than
"But, look, here's a picture of one of these Spanish fellows,
marching into the South Sea, and pretending to take possession
of it all for his king.
"And here's another, of a daring young Portuguese who died
fighting rather than give in, though any one could see that he had
too many against him, and it was of no use fighting at all."
After all, I don't believe that you've told me anything at all
about the chief among all those adventurers," I said.
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 31
LOURENO DE ALMEIDA'S LAST ENGAGEMENT.
32 A YOUNG OVER;; OR,
"Who do you mean ? asked my old friend : "who was the
chief among them, pray ? "
Why, don't you know that man that wanted so badly to go
out, because somehow or other he was sure that there was a great
country right across the Atlantic Ocean, though nobody knew then
that there was any such place as America at all."
Ah, I know now what you mean," said the old man, smiling.
"And can't you tell me his name yourself? Why, I should have
thought that a great boy like you would have known that."
I've heard, but I can't remember," said I. "And don't you
know, Mr. Parkinson, that reading dry books is not in my way ? "
More's the pity, Master Will, more's the pity," returned my
old man, shaking his head. "So other folks are to pick out the
plums for you, to save you the trouble, that's it, is it ?"
"Never mind, tell us, there's a good soul," said I.
"Christopher Columbus; you mean him, I suppose," the old
man said; but if you do, let me tell you that he was not like you,
as far as I can make out, for he seems to have stuck to his.books
when he was a lad. He went to sea at fourteen, and soon became
a clever sailor, fond of drawing maps, and mathematics too.
"People generally call him the discoverer of America, because
he was so eager about it; but yet he wasn't, for five hundred
years before people from Norway and Iceland had found out Green-
land, and even, as it seems, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland too."
"But all that had been forgotten; and now a notion of his,
that the east side of Asia could be reached from. the west side of
Europe made him at last stumble on the great continent that lay
between; but even then other people were on the same tack, and
one man seems to have been before him.
"It was the famous Ferdinand and Isabella, you know, who
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 33
COLUMBUS SENT IN CHAINS TO SPAIN.
34 A YOUNG OVER; OR,
sent him out; and when he came home the first time he had plenty
of honour because he had found out so much; but see, he got into
trouble, even after all seemed going smoothly, as he thought.
Look, there he is being brought in chains to Spain, because some
people had written all sorts of lies about him. He had been made
governor of what he had discovered, and it was turned into a
colony of Spain. Over there some people made up stories about
him, and he was fetched back to Spain in chains. However, the
Queen was very sorry when she heard the truth from himself.
But, dear me, that story of Columbus is a great deal too long for
me to tell you; and if a boy like you can't manage to read that
for yourself, I don't see what you could read."
That was true enough, and I was rather ashamed of myself;
but, you see, I was a fidget, and it would ] have been a good thing
for me if I'd been made to learn, whether I'liked it or not. Only
I was not; I was the only boy, and spoilt. That was the truth
So I went home, half wishing that I was not such a dunce, but
too lazy to make myself settle to anything. I was not a bit like
Columbus, you see.
And that thought came into my head, as I was amusing myself
with my rabbits next day, Pretty creatures they were, and I was
fond enough of them, only they were at home, and they could not
be let to run far, or else I should have lost them.
So I told Katie that she might have them, if she liked, and
that I should go and see after some creatures that would be better
fun. Dear old Katie she was a good-tempered sister, that she
was. Anything I did not want, she'd take, and take care
of, too, until I changed my mind, and wanted it back again.
It was very good of her, I'm sure, but abominably mean of me.
36 A YOUNG OVER; OR,
I hope that none of you boys will behave like that to your sisters,
and that they will teach you better if you try anything of the kind.
I hope that I have learnt better manners by this time, and, indeed,
long ago; but I had to feel very lonely many a day before I knew
what it would be to have no one to care for me, and so came to
value those who did.
Well, I looked out for a stouter pet next time; and the one I
chose was a rough sort of a goat, with very stout horns indeed.
To do anything with him, of course I should have had him
quite young; but I never thought of that, and when people said
that at that age I should have a trouble to master him, I did not
believe them, but thought I knew best, as, indeed, I thought about
He was obliged to be fastened to a strong post; and that he
did not like at all, but chafed and tossed about much as I should
have done myself. I tried to tame him, but he would not behave
at all as I considered that he ought to behave; and sometimes I
was regularly angry, and used to poke him and hit him with a long
pole, which I could use at a safe distance.
Katie would tease me a bit about that, and say, Have patience
with the poor beast, Will. Why, you would be just as bad your-
self if you were in his place."
But my dog Caesar took my part, and would grow quite furious
at the creature's violence. Dogs always are indignant at every
other animal that does not behave himself, as we all know.
That tussle with the goat was a real piece of work for me-
something to do, for I was obliged to keep him in some sort of
order, as I had got him. My father insisted on that. He did not
often insist on anything. Perhaps I should have been a better boy
if he had. But he was almost cross about that goat, because he
A BAD BARGAIN.
88 A YOUNG OVER; OB,
had told me that it was an unmanageable creature, and that I had
better not have it. But I would have it. Father had not exactly
said I was not to have it; but it came to pretty much the same
thing, and I ought not to have got it at all, though some one sold
it to me so cheap that it was rather a temptation.
However, I had enough of the creature at last; for, one day,
he made such a push at me with his horns that it took all my
strength to hold him back. FortunaIcly, I got hold of them
before he could strike with them; but if a man had not come
to my help, he would have half-killed me, I do believe, if not
I was horribly frigliteule--more frightened than I would own;
but I got so white, Katie said, that it was of no use denying it
However, boys will get into danger if they can, people say;
and it was certainly true about me. I was always getting into
some scrape or other; and it seems to me a great wonder now
that I did not get killed.
And after I had had some extraordinary escape, poor Katie
would say sometimes, "Oh, Will, how often I wish our dear
mother had lived; for perhaps you would have listened to her,
and you won't to me. Do you know that sometimes I can't
sleep at night when I think of the things you do. I get so
frightened, fancying now you've broken your arm or your leg,
or something or other "
Just like a girl," I would say, now and then; but at other
times, I would be a bit kinder, and cheer her up in my way, by
saying that I took more care than she thought, and that after all
boys did not often get hurt.
Oh, Will," she would answer, what do you mean ? Why,
ENOUGH OF HIM.
40 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
don't you recollect hearing how Jim Black got drowned, and
how his cousin Walter cut his hand horribly, and- "
"Oh, dear, don't, Katie," I said; "of course, we all know
that accidents will happen; but if we are always afraid of them,
we should never have any fun at all."
My love of fun was past all bearing," father would tell me.
"It was anything but fun to other people," he said.
And he had good reason to scold, as scold he did one day
when I had been breaking bounds, and getting over stiles and
fences into the grounds of a gentleman who lived not far from us,
and who was very particular about such things; as well he might
be, seeing that he kept some very dangerous animals.
For instance, he took great pride in his cattle, and had some
of various kinds-quiet and gentle creatures in one part of his mea-
dows, and in another hilly bit of land, some very wild and fierce ones.
Now, I had no business, as I said before, in any part of those
grounds; and it would have done me a deal of good if I had got
a thrashing for getting into them.
However, I got something worse ; for I got a fright ten times
worse than that about the goat; when all at once I found myself
pursued by a bull, and had to run as fast as my legs would carry
me-indeed, faster than they ever did before-and then only just
succeeded in tumbling over a place that he could not climb; and
in doing so, got a fall and sprained my ankle so badly, that if it
had not been for the fright I was in, I don't believe I could have
walked at all after it.
As it was, when I reached home I was in such pain that I was
glad enough to have any nursing that I could get from any one,
my young aunt, my sister, Katie and the servants, though generally
I could not bear a fuss made over me.
A DANGEROUS ANIMAL.
42 A YOUNG OVER; OR,
I had to keep my foot up, and lie on a sofa after that for a
good many days, you may be sure; and Katie had enough to do
to amuse me with stories and anything else she could think of.
And just because it was all my own fault, and I knew it, I was
cross about it; though it was a long time before I told even
Katie just how it happened.
You know, boys, that a clear conscience makes a quiet mind;
and when people's minds are quiet, then they can bear what
happens-to them much better than if they have a guilty feeling in
I knew very well that I was wrong when I did such things;
for I had been taught as long as I could remember that there is a
great God above whom we are all bound to obey-boys as well as
men; and I knew that He has commanded boys to obey their
fathers and mothers, and that my father had often told me not to
trespass on forbidden grounds.
So you see I knew very well that I had done wrong, and that
I always did wrong when I got into scrapes like that. Katie often
told me so in her loving, coaxing way; and I knew that she was
better than I was, because she tried to please God, while I
I knew all that, and a good deal more; but I put away those
thoughts as much as I could, and wished every day that I could
be roaming about again in my old way.
Yet, when I did get well, and could walk about, I am glad to
say that I did not quite forget to be thankful; and in a kind of
way I made up my mind to be a good, steady lad in future.
Oh, it was delightful to be able to roam about as free as air
once more, and go over the moor and up the hills and down the
vales, and to run after those splendid stags again, who, of course,
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 43
FREE AS AIR.
44 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
always got out of my way-only it was something to run after,
and of course I could not hurt them.
I felt a very good boy when I was enjoying that sport, and
always came in with a great appetite and in an excellent temper.
There were some fine horned sheep out on that moor too, and
sometimes I would try to catch them, just for the pleasure of
running after them; but I never succeeded.
And just then it was pleasant even to be able to go to
school; and I remember the first time I went after my acci-
dent, that father put quite a lot of money into the old leather
purse in which I always kept all I had ; and I felt very jolly that
We lived not so very far from the sea; and as I grew older
and could ramble farther, I now and then got as far as within sight
of it; and then I would come home and tell my father that I must
be a sailor, and that no other life would suit me.
He did not much like the idea at first; indeed, I don't think he
ever did. But as it was time for me to be thinking of being some-
thing, and I seemed to have no quiet tastes at all, he gradually
came round to the idea ; and much as she loved me, I believe that
in her heart Katie had long felt that I must be either a soldier or
a sailor, and rather wished me to go to sea, of the two.
So she did not oppose me, though she often looked very sad
when I talked of the long voyages I should make, and the
dangers which would at times be all around me; and altogether
it came to be a planned thing. And at last I was sent to a naval
school, where, to do myself justice, I really turned over a new
leaf, and began gradually to get a notion of proper work.
The very first holidays Katie found that out, and her eyes got
quite bright when I talked of my masters and the other boys, and
SHEEP O THE MOO.
46 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
the books; and she saw that I had quite found out a pleasure in
reading myself and in getting prizes.
And as for my father, he was delighted, and cried, "Why,
Will, we shall make a man of you, after all."
My father was a man of some property; and his land extended
in one direction to a spot not far from the sea-coast. From my
-=- r" :-
A CLIPPER SHIP.
babyhood I was always for running down to the shore whenever
we stayed, as we sometimes did, in a cottage on that part of his
grounds. Then I loved the waves, and I loved the rocks, and I
loved the glorious open sea, and the ships on it, better far than
anything at all on the land. But as I had grown older, and had
not often been at that cottage, or quite near the sea, this fancy
for it had almost died out; but now that it had returned in
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 47
full force, I was wild until I really was sent to that naval
Still, if father had gone against the notion, or if Katie had set
her face against it, I could not have gone comfortable to sea; and
I have often thought it was a good thing that he did not oppose it,
as probably my temper would have been ruined, even if I had got
my own way.
About the same time it was thought better that Katie should
go to a boarding school; and thus when I was nearly ready for
my first voyage, she was not at home. So I had just to write
and tell her that if all went well, it was likely that in about a fort-
night's time I should be on my way to China.
It was hard for both of us that we could not say good-bye to
each other; but father thought it better that we should not. Yet
it was a hard letter to write, too; I well knew how sad it would
make her. But I told her that we were to be back in a year or
two, if all went well; and then I hoped to come laden with curious
presents for her. Meantime she might be expecting letters pretty
often, as I hoped to have many a yarn to spin.
She was a long way in the country; I fretted and fumed at
not being allowed to go and wish her good-bye, and, in fact, was
quite cross about it. So when the "Harry" set sail, I did not
carry with me as light a heart as I had always expected mine to
be when I made my first voyage. When once we were fairly off,
my spirits rose; and I set about all the work to which I was
ordered, with a right good will. We sailed from London, and saw
plenty of shipping before we were out of the river; the old
"Dreadnought" amongst others.
It was a fine day, I recollect, and the sunshine and the sea-
breezes filled me with gladness. The next day was fine too, and
48 A YOUNG OVER; OR,
the next after that; and as I.had been used of late to be in boats
and ships of all kinds as much as I could, I did not think of sea-
sickness until we got near the Bay of Biscay. We did not exactly
go into it, but kept further out to sea, as we were to sail all round
Nevertheless, it was something like a sea just thereabouts.
Why, the waves were like mountains; and when you came down
from the top of one into the deep valley below, you couldn't help
I thought I'd just lie in my hammock a bit until the giddiness
went off; but I soon found out that this would not do at all, and
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 49
that ill or well, I must keep on my legs; for that's the way they
However, as it turned out, there was a good reason for the
roughness of the sea. A storm was brewing; and very soon the
gale which I had not thought much of turned out to be no joke.
Our captain was a first-rate man, and his voice, which was a
loud one, might be heard in every lull, giving his orders in a way
that made us all trust in him. But, after all, storms and winds
are not under any captain's orders.
The wind blew and blew and blew harder and harder, and
louder and louder, and the sea became so rough that none of us
knew how to keep on his feet, and some of us had to lash ourselves
to the masts.
I wondered then what sort of weather they were having at
home, and whether there was a storm there, and if so, what they
were thinking about me, and whether they were frightened or not.
I liked to feel that they were remembering me, you see; to tell the
truth, a dreary, lonely sort of feeling came over me just then, and
a little bit of dread, and a little bit of a sorry sort of sensation that
I had so often been such a plague at home, together with a
thought that perhaps, after all, they might be more comfortable
And then a confusion of other ideas came, and I remember
thinking, If we are going to have a bad storm now, and be in a
"great deal of danger, I could have faced it with a much bolder
heart, if all these black things about the past were not there to keep
coming back upon me.
One of our masts was carried away by the violence of the wind,
and our rigging altogether was torn about sadly; so that the ship
became almost unmanageable, and we could do nothing but let
50 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
her run before the wind. It was an anxious time, for we knew that
we were being driven on to the shore, somewhere on the coast of
Africa. It was a desolate and very dangerous part of the coast;
so that we were much more likely to be dashed to pieces upon the
rocks, than to find any harbour of refuge; and if we had contrived
to get our shattered ship into moorings, I don't know what we
could have done with her. Fortunately for us, the wind suddenly
shifted, and a fresh gale drove us out to sea again.
"We had sprung no leak, and we had, of course, plenty of pro-
visions: so we had just to be content to beat about until the wind
lulled a bit; and then, doing the best we could to get ourselves
to rights, we made for the island of Madeira.
Madeira, you know, is one of a group of three islands, and the
largest of the group. It is extremely mountainous, and some of
the mountains are of considerable height. One of them is six
thousand feet high; and very glad we were when we saw its tall
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 51
crest rising above the clouds. The chief town is called Funchal,
and there we hoped to rest for awhile after all our fatigues.
For a day or two the weather was calm; but just as we were
nearing our desired haven-so it was just then-the wind rose
again, and though this time it drove us the right way, yet it was
in a pretty plight that we came in sight of the harbour.
I forgot to tell you that there were two ladies on board, the
captain's wife and his young daughter. Dear brave souls they
were, and as patient and quiet as they could be. But many a time
during those stormy days it made my heart sore to see the poor
girl's white face.
I had never spoken to her until the day when we were running
in, and all straining our eyes to see, amongst the mist and cloud,
just how the land lay, and whether we were seen from the shore.
Then I well remember Miss Ellen was saying to her mother,
"Where is it, mamma ? as she heard us talking of something
ashore, and I, seeing it, stepped forward and said, There it is,
just there." But the words were hardly out of my mouth,
when a huge wave washed the deck, and she and I were both in
I was a good swimmer, and I instantly struck out, trying to
catch her dress and save her; but the sea was too strong for me.
It carried her out of my reach in a minute, and as I battled with
the waves I saw her clinging to a plank which had gone over too;
and to my comfort I saw that it was being washed ashore.
As for myself I had a hard fight for it. Somehow or other I
had got flung the other way, and I got a knock on the head too,
which made me stupid; so I soon found my strength failing, and
had given myself up for lost, when I felt something seize me by the
shirt in front and hold me up tightly.
52 A YOUNG ROVEB; OR,
It gave me a turn at first, for I had forgotten the captain's big
dog, Dick, but he hadn't forgotten me; and when I found it was in
the dear brute's clutches I was, I let my senses go, as go they would,
and did not feel so uncomfortable about it.
Well, he got me to shore somehow, and somehow or other he
got me round again. And as soon as I could move, the thought
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 53
of Miss Ellen came back to me, so I scrambled up and crept
about among the rocks, hoping to find her.
And to my great joy I did, after half an hour's search, though
certainly at first I thought she was dead, as she lay all unconscious
in a place where the big waves seldom came, a shallow, half-
s*heltered sort of spot, among the rocks.
54 A YOUNG ROVER.
A monster wave had carried her in, and kindly too, and there
left her. The tide just then turned, and the wind fell, and so she
had been left high and pretty dry.
What to do with her I did not know, for there was not a soul
within sight; and at first I was not sure whether she was dead or
alive. But Dick had more sense than I, for he began licking her
face and licking her hands; and in a minute or so I saw that her
chest was heaving a little, and that there was just a little move-
ment about her eyelids and mouth.
So then I took courage, and began rubbing her hands and her
side just about the heart, and puffing into her face, as I had heard
was the right thing to do.
Very soon she opened her eyes, and when she saw only me she
said, Where am I ? "
I don't know, any more than you," I replied; but we're on
shore, at any rate, and that's a mercy."
I did not often speak like that; but I was thankful then, not
so much for myself even as for her.
They must have seen us come ashore from the ship, I should
think," I said, again trying to comfort her; "and they'll be
certain to come and look for us. And when you feel able, I think
we had better get up the beach and on the hill above us. Perhaps
we shall be able to see where we are from there, and make them
see us too."
She soon got up, and I helped her; and if we had not both
been so wet we should have rather enjoyed our walk. Happily,
the sun soon came out, and it was very warm. We crept on till
we got into a splendid wood, which was, indeed, close by the shore.
But it was not long before we heard voices that we knew. Then
poor Ellen sank down again, and murmured-
LOKN OR EP
56 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
"Thank God, we are saved! "
Our friends soon came up, and she was borne away to a house
and put to bed; and I got some dry clothes, which was all I
It was a somewhat terrible beginning to my sea life, and on
CLOUDS ON THE PEAK OF TENERIFFE.
the whole I was not sorry that we were obliged to stay on shore
awhile, during the time that our ship was undergoing repairs.
Between ourselves, young folks, I may tell you that Ellen and
I were friends ever after that, and that now she is your own dear
Oh! oh! you never knew that before! Ah, I thought I
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 57
should surprise you, and you see mamma and I have known each
other a good long time.
But I must get on with my story.
Our ship had to stay there until she could be got ready for sea
again, and that took up some time, I can tell you, for she was in a
So, then and there the first yarn home was spun; and inte-
resting enough it must have been to the poor sister, Katie, no
doubt-too interesting a good deal, so she told me.
Well, the next thing which I have to tell you is of a rather
"We stayed in that island, as I said, for some time, and I got
used to exploring the country, and also learnt many dodges for
helping myself in a scrape.
Then we set sail again, and all went well and smoothly for
many a day. I enjoyed my sea life, and grew quite hardy and
strong in it.
The captain did not mean to put in anywhere else till he got to
the Cape of Good Hope, but for some reason best known to himself
he did, at a place on the west coast of Africa-indeed, at more
than one place.
We did not stop long; but I and some of the men made the
most of our time for seeing what the country was like.
We roamed the woods, and found plenty of queer creatures in
them, but none queerer than the monkeys.
How they used to chatter and scramble about the branches, to
be sure, and what lots of mischief they seemed to have in them !
I got into a regular pitched battle with them on one occasion, and
if it hadn't been that I had a hatchet with me, I should have got
the worst of it; that's certain. I was on in front of my comrades,
"58 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
when the blo:rild things made their descent, and attacked me in
front and in rear-one on my shoulders, one dragging at my
clothes, and all bent on mischief.
I have seen plenty of monkeys in other places-monkeys
big and monkeys little, monkeys fierce and monkeys peaceable,
monkeys grave and monkeys gay; but such nasty little wretches as
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND-LAND. 59
these I never saw anywhere else, and I hope I never may see
I was regularly at my wit's end-cross and angry at being
attacked in such a way by such nasty spiteful little things, and yet
really in some danger of being pulled to pieces by them.
There was nothing for it but to chop away with my hatchet;
and how many I killed and wounded I can't say-all I know is
that I came off conqueror, and that the story of the encounter
served to fill half my second letter home, which was posted when
we reached Cape Town.
We stayed there a week or two; and during that time I
saw what reminded me very forcibly of my own late escape at
Madeira. A storm came on along the coast, and though it was not
of long continuance, yet it caused the loss of at least one little vessel.
We were out one day for a stroll, and looking towards the sea,
we saw what seemed to us a wreck; and as we 4tood and
watched, we made out that it was but a small craft, but that just
leaving it, and making for shore, was a raft with some one on it,
who was signalling to us.
It proved to be quite a young boy; and when we got him in he
told his tale, which was rather touching. The ship was his
father's; and there had been six hands on board besides himself.
The father fell ill and died, while yet some way out at sea; and he
was buried in the deep water. After that they made for home,
and were caught in this gale, and their vessel quite broken up.
Four of the men had launched the one boat they had, and gone off
in her. The others had stayed by the wreck, and when the gale
went down, had made a raft and loaded it with what they could
save. But the men were both killed by the fall of the mast, and
the lad was left alone with his dog. Pleased enough they were to
60 A YOUNG OVER; OR,
see us so near at hand. A smart little fellow he was; and his dog
was a real beauty.
But what were we to do with them both?
Poor things! Though they got ashore at last, they were a
__--- - --_---7-__ _ _---_ ___-- i - -- --
good way from the place where the boy's home was, and where his
mother still lived, he hoped.
And now he did not exactly know even in which direction to
journey; for he had never been quite in that part of the country
before. And it was piteous to see him on the top of a little bit of
rising ground, looking in all directions to try and find some tree
or hill which he could recognize.
He was not a true negro, I must tell you, though from what
he said we fancied that his mother must have been a negress. His
62 A YOUNG OVER.
father perhaps was a sort of Englishman; but a very queer sort,
I fancy, seeing that the boy spoke only a kind of hash,-a little
English, a little French, and a good deal of some language that we
could not make out at all. Yet he seemed to have'been very fond
of his father, and shivered and sobbed when he looked towards the
great deep in which he was buried.
He would have to tell his mother, we thought, that she was a
widow now; and, for my part, I did not one bit like the idea of
going with him to his African home to tell his tale.
However, I had no occasion; for in a little time he made out
a small plot of ground, with huts on it, where he told us his uncle
lived, and soon he started off as hard as he could run, and his dog
after him, because he saw some children coming out of the huts,
and uttering as he ran many strange sounds, which we took to be
their names; for as soon as they caught them they looked up, and
listened, and then ran too. So that was the last we saw of our
little friend. /
You have been on a rough sea, and you know how uncom-
fortable you soon began to feel as the vessel went up and down,
up and down, from the top of one wave to the valley between
that and the next, and then up to the top of that, and down again,
and so on.
We went out once in an open boat on that shore, and even we
did not feel comfortable, used as we were to the sea, for the waves
along that shore were something serious; the large sea-birds
hovered over them, to see, I suppose, what fish they could catch
up; and altogether it was very grand.
Sometimes I used to stand on the shore, and look right away,
as far as my eye would reach, to the line which seems like the
edge of the sea where it touches the sky, and then I could see rows
r- *- .- -------- ^ -
WAVES BREAKING ON THE SHOES.
64 A YOUNG ROVER.
and rows of these waves appearing smaller and smaller as they
went away from me; because each one was further off than that
before it; and then I would think how long the sea has been rolling
like this, and how very, very old it is !
There is a place called Wydah, which you can find if you look
for it on the sea-coast in the Gulf of Guinea, and at which we after-
wards touched. Well, in front of Wydah, just as boats and ships
would try to get to it from the sea, there are always three rows of
giant waves. No one knows what causes them, though some
people suppose it is a great sand-bank underneath. Sailors say
that nothing more wonderful can be seen at sea anywhere in the
world than the bar of Wydah. One would suppose that no one in
his senses would ever try to take a boat over it; but then, you see,
it is often very useful to do so. People want to go over, and so
they try. I do not mean white people; very likely whites would
get drowned if they did. I mean the negroes.
Some Frenchmen have got workshops on the shore, at each end
of the bar, and people want to go from one to the other very
often; so they keep a long canoe at each of them, and when they
want to send messages, they put a number of negroes into the
canoe, and send them off. They are all naked, and they can all
swim like fishes;
The man who is the leader stands at one end of the boat, and
he has a longer oar than the others. The rest have short ones,
and they row very cleverly, never letting the oars touch the edge
of the boat at all. They go along very fast, and if they can manage
to keep the boat quite straight to the wave, then they shoot over,
though with a boatful of spray; but should the wind or the force
of the sea be too strong for them, then over they all go, negroes
and oars, and perhaps the boat too.
:- ..-R, -. .
=~ : -:
_4 -. ....
,i .r~ _. - ~ 1
66 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
In such a sea it is wonderful that they are not all drowned
but unless a shark should get hold of one of them, they will be all
right, and you would see them turn the boat, pick up their oars,
and jump in again, none the worse for their upset; and as they do
not wear clothes, why, there is nothing to dry except their skins,
about which they do not trouble very much, as the sun will soon
put them to rights again.
We saw many interesting things along that coast; and I, for
my part, found the negroes very amusing, and used to get chatting
with them as often as I could.
I remember how, on one occasion, when a steamer came
coasting round a little bay in rather an out-of-the-way part, where
steamer are not often seen, a lot of these negroes came down to
the beach, and held up their arms, and chattered and shouted, as
if the man in the moon had come to visit them.
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 67
I daresay they see steamboats often enough now, as every
year we send more and more to that coast.
People.told me that travelling in that part of the world was
difficult work. They have camels, of course, but not in every part;
and about Sierra Leone I have heard that horses do not thrive.
Still they have some, and also goats and sheep.
But there are many wild beasts in Africa, of course, and
amongst others jackals, buffaloes, leopards, lions, and tigers;
., .. .. .
besides these, the fiercest of all the monkeys live there. Then
there is the tall giraffe, and the gnu, and the antelope, and the
zebra, and-oh, dear me I was near forgetting the elephant, the
rhinoceros, and hippopotamus-the three giants in the animal
Of course there are parrots of many kinds, and many other
large birds, as, for instance, eagles and falcons.
After all, perhaps the hyena is one of the most horrible of
African beasts, only fortunately it is so great a coward that it will
68 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
not attack any creature that will face it, and there cannot be any
doubt that it is very useful as a scavenger.
Yes, boys, I mean just that. In any wild country you must
remember that animals which are not killed must some time or
other die in a common way. Well, then, what becomes of them ?
They don't bury each other, and therefore the carcases lie about
in a putrid state, and would cause lots of sickness if God had not
made jackals, hymnas, and vultures to eat up the dead bodies.
But I must get on with my story. We were soon at sea again,
and did not touch anywhere till we came to the small island which
you will find near that great one called Madagascar. The small
island belongs to the English now. It used to belong to the
French, and before them to the Dutch. The Dutch were driven out
by the rats, they say, first of all, and then by the blacks; and at
last they got sick of it, and let the French have it: and they called
it the Isle of France; but in a time of war we took it from them,
and we call it Mauritius. It's a little island, as I said, but lots
of people live on it for all that; and a beautiful country it is.
The thing that I remember best was a very tall mountain,
named Peter Botte, a most extraordinary shaped mountain, to be
sure. It is a warm part of the world; and people might go up
the mountain often enough for any ice or snow that stand in their
way; but then the shape of it was so queer. It looks, for all the
world, as if it had been carved out and cut into shape by work-
men, for there's a great thing at the top like a head. It goes
in first, and gets thin like a neck, and then out comes this
head; so that you might suppose that no one could ever get to
A Frenchman tried once, and bragged a good deal about where
he had been, but nobody believed him, for he said he went up all
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 69
alone. Then some English officers got a ladder and ropes, and I
do not know what; and actually they got to the very top of
PETER BOTTE MOUNTAIN.
the head, and if you look at it you may see what a piece of
work it must have been.
70 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
Nothing very particular happened after we left Mauritius until
we got into Chinese waters-at least, nothing that I remember
now. The first thing that I saw belonging to the old kingdom
was a junk, or Chinese ship.
It was a biggish sort of affair, and pretty strongly built, and
handsome, too, of its kind; but it didn't come near to an English
A CHINESE JUNK.
man-of-war, or even to our own Harry." To row a great thing
like that must have been hard work; but, however, the oars were
hard at work.
I was not the only new fellow on board, so there were two
others who joined me in my silly laugh at this new sort of vessel,
as I called it, not knowing then how very old is every kind of
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 71
thing that men make in that proud country where they have not
changed anything for hundreds of years, at least.
Anyhow, it is a very conceited habit-that way of laughing at
the customs of other countries; and it was a good thing for us
youths that we could not speak Chinese, or we might have got
into a scrape.
I do not know whether the Chinese laugh particularly at us
English; but I know that they hate all foreigners, and that it is
not many years since we were first able to go on shore, or live in
any part of their country. China is changing, and will change
now, because the people of other lands can get in; but still you
may see many a strange thing there. One of the queerest
fellows that I ever saw was a Chinese rat-catcher. A bald-
headed fellow he was, with long moustache, and, of course, a
pigtail. We think that way of wearing the hair very girlish and
silly; and I dare say they think bur fashions as silly as we think
But, after all, it is not a man's dress that you can go by; for
generally it is some one else's taste that settles that, and perhaps
even the taste of his ancestors. The only way is to talk to people,
and get at what they like, and what they don't like, and get them
to let one know what is in their thoughts; and then you can tell
whether you would like them or not.
It is very silly to judge by anything outside. We may be
amused by a funny dress or a funny way of doing things; but we
have no business to despise anyone for such things.
I laughed at this man's pigtail; and my laughter would not
hurt him as long as he did not know about it, which I took care
he should not; so I need not scold myself for that. Indeed, I
was a little more particular what I did by that time; for I had
72 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
learned then that these Chinamen will not put up with impudence
from anybody. I did not see his pigtail at first, but I knew he was
sure to have one-all Chinamen do; and so I peeped round, and
there it was, and a long one, too. One would not suppose that
rats were very delicious food; but as he sold them, I suppose some
people bought them and ate them too !
-^ "*s -Li.~~4---- / : __--------.- ^ ^ : '
:-- T -- .
I dare say the Chinese may have worn pigtails for hundreds
and hundreds of years past; and it will not matter much if they
should wear them for hundreds of years to come. But the sooner
they change some of their customs the better, for many of them
are very cruel.
It would take more time than I have to tell you much about
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 73
PU ISHMENT IN CHINA
PUNISHMIENT IN CHIINA.
74 A YOUNG OVER; OE,
them, and very likely you would only despise these people all the
more if I did.
They punish people in the most barbarous ways if they break
the laws, and sometimes for very small crimes they will put
them out in the sun with a huge wooden collar on their necks;
while for stealing, they sometimes put a man into a sort of tub
with his head through a hole in the lid, and leave him to live
on any scraps that charitable people may bring him, or die if they
don't bring any, I suppose.
Cold, hard people those Chinese often are, while they are
heathens; but some of them have learnt what the love of God is
now, and have given up the false worship which they used to have.
So now there are Chinese Christians, who are kind, self-denying
men and women, and who show what many of those poor people
would become if only they were taught what you and I have been.
The Chinese have their amusements, too-their happy times,
as they call them, I suppose, when they make merry with their
friends. They do not dance, perhaps because the women cannot,
with their pinched-up feet; but they have music, songs, and plays,
and they tumble, and juggle, and wrestle.
They are fond of fireworks too, and great hands at making
such things. I have seen a long pole fifty feet high being set up,
and covered with rockets, squibs, crackers, and Roman candles;
and they actually make the people pay a tax for the expense of
fireworks shown at feasts.
On one of their feasts all the houses are splendidly lighted up
with coloured lanterns, made of glass or paper, and cut or made
into the shapes of birds, beasts, or fishes, all made to please their
ancestors-their grandfathers and great-grandfathers, etc.-who
stand to these ignorant people in the place of God.
PUNISHMENT OF A THIEF.
: o-- -- -=
PUIHMN OF A TIEF
76 A YOUNG ROVER.
With such a religion we cannot wonder at many of their pecu-
liarities, and, indeed, we may say that their religion is made up of
the worship of ancestors, and has nothing better in it. They do
not know anything about the one true God, or about Jesus
Christ, our blessed Saviour-at least, only a few know, who have
met with Christian missionaries.
So you see, if they are cruel and conceited, and think their own
ways better than any other people's, we cannot much wonder.
And I must tell you that for hundreds of years they would
not let any foreigners into their country at all. But they shut
everybody out of it, and only knew what they could do them-
selves, and nothing about what other people knew or could
do. Their land they called "the Flowery Land;" and they
had arts and sciences, could read and write and make many
beautiful things, and they did not want anyone else to interfere
"Well, but that was just because once on a time some foreigners
-Spaniards, I believe-had interfered a great deal too much.
They went and found fault with the government and the laws,
and got people to rebel and be troublesome; so that we cannot
be much surprised at their shutting every one out. Only they shut
themselves in, you see, and prevented the knowledge of the true
God and the Saviour being taken to them. So that was very sad;
and it is a good thing for them that other people can get into
But I must tell you what I saw there. I saw the inside
of some Chinese houses, and cannot say that I altogether
admired them, for it seemed to me rather bad manners in the
men to have their own rooms beautifully furnished, while the
ladies' rooms were very shabby. I saw, too, a family travelling
-_ ---------- ---
A CHINESE FAMILY ON A JOURNEY.
78 A YOUNG ROVEB; OR,
in a queer sort of cart with a sail. And I saw the cities full of
coloured lanterns, and I was at some of their feasts. Boys and
girls would have some fun at those times-English ones, I mean
-if they could just go for a half-holiday to one of those Chinese
cities, and have a look at these fine things. I thought them very
amusing when I was a lad, I know. What a pity that China is
so far off.
Those Chinamen don't play at cricket as men and boys in
England do; but you must know that they have their games as
well as we. Only you might be a little amused if you saw the
grown-up men amusing themselves with flying kites. But that is
what they like as well as anything.
The "Harry" touched at several of the sea-ports, and once we
paid a visit to that next-door country, Cochin China, I mean.
They are a more lively set there; and they do not pinch up the
little girls' feet, when they are babies, so that the women there
can walk properly.
One of the favourite games of the Cochin China folks is
I saw a party of men playing at it one evening outside
one of their villages, and a very funny sight it was, for they
do not play it with battledores, as you do, but kick the shuttle-
cocks up into the air with their feet. That makes it, of course, a
much more difficult game than ours.
"We did not go straight home from China, by any means.
You see, ours was a merchant vessel, and we had business in
several ports. When I left home, I had no idea of seeing so much
as I did. We called at Calcutta, for one thing; and I remember
something which I will tell you about our getting in there-or
getting out-which was it ?
PLAYING AT SHUTTLECOCK.
80 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
Oh, but I must not forget to tell you that though the Chinese
do not do much dancing-perhaps because the women can't, with
their tiny feet; for, you see, they think it so important that women
should have small feet, that they turn the toes under, and bind
them up tightly whilst they are babies-well, though they cannot
therefore dance, yet they are fond of plays, which are acted in a
very formal way, and which, perhaps, for that reason, would not
much please English people.
Yet the Chinese like them, for they like formal and stiff things
of all kinds.
I did not much take to them, for that very reason, as perhaps
you might guess that a boy of my sort would not.
So I was not very sorry when I found that we had finished
our business, and that our captain thought of turning home-
It was a very bright thought, that of seeing Katie again, and
my father, and my home; for I am glad to say that I was
going home with a good character, and so did not fear to meet
You see that when I got away from home, I had often thought
of things that had been said to me, which at the time I did not
mind; and I had been obliged to work, too, and had learned to
"love work; so, though I was not by any means as good as I knew
I ought to be, still I had improved; and I thought that Katie
would be pleased.
My young Aunt Katie might be pleased, too; but she was
married, and had gone to live a long way off; besides, I always
cared more what Katie thought of me than what any one else
thought, though I was very fond of my father and of my grand-
A BOY'S ADVENTURES ON SEA AND LAND. 81
A CHINESE PLAY.
_---- -=--~-2~ ~
: -- .
82 A YOUNG BOVEE; OR,
But I was going to tell you of a strange thing. that happened
either in going to Calcutta or in leaving it; for we touched at
Calcutta on our way home, and, indeed, stayed some time there.
Which was it, in going or coming back ?
Really, I can't remember; it's so long ago.
Well, a whole boatful of black fellows were enjoying themselves
out at sea. They were in an open boat, and seemingly very merry.
When our vessel came near they appeared to take a fancy to us,
put themselves in our way, followed us, halloed to us, and seemed
to wish to have something to say to us.
What about, I'm sure I don't know; and our crew neither
knew, nor cared to know. We would not take any notice of them,
and though they roared out to us to throw them a rope, that they
might hang on, they did not get it, until the most stupid fellow
on board heard them, and flung over a tow-line, which they seized
in a minute.
It was blowing a stiff breeze, and we were going along at a
great rate. They did not seem to know what to make of the
plight they were in at first, after they had fastened the rope too
fast to be unloosed in a minute.
Pulled along as we were pulling, them through a sea like that,
they were in danger of upsetting every minute.
Their merry faces changed very soon to frightened ones; and
if one of them had not just thought of taking his knife and cutting
the rope, I expect thr all would have got drowned.
As they did not go) over when the rope was divided, which
I thought they would by the sudden jerk, why, we felt quite
comfortable about them. But the stupid fellow who had thrown
the rope to them got more of a lecture from our captain than
"" '4" .- _
S. .: _.__ ~ ... 1 t i
CUTTING TIHE TOW ROPE.
84 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
You see it is no joke to have fellows doing such silly things
on board ship; and I always say we don't want idiots on board
of any vessel; for there are more lives lost at sea through stupid
things being done by men and boys without any brains, or any
thought how to use their brains, and through foolish pranks like
that, than many people know.
That first voyage of mine was rather full of adventures, I must
say; and this one that I am coming to now was of no very
pleasant description. It was another thing to sober me.
Indeed, it was a wonder that when I got home again I did not
wish to stay on shore, as many a boy does who thinks, before he
tries it, that he was born to be a sailor. Yet I did not, and I
never have wished to be a/landsman all my life. I love the sea,
with all its dangers; only, you know, it makes a deal of difference
what sort of captain you get under at first, and I got under a
Captain Brown was taken ill in Calcutta; and our good ship
being again rather out of sorts too, we were detained some little
time. It was during this delay that I had again a narrow escape
of my life. There are plenty of things to see in Calcutta, which
is the capital of India; but I did not care for cities or city
Tired of being on shore in that hot place, I had got leave for
a few days, and had joined a small schooner which was starting
for a short voyage along the coast. We were 'sailing along, not
thinking of danger, very near the land, which was steep and
rocky, and with deep water close under the cliffs. In a moment,
almost without warning, a sudden squall struck us, and before we
could take in sail, we were thrown on our beam-ends. The wind
blew with extraordinary violence for a few moments, and I never
"< ', /' -:_
-_ rA '
- .1 .. ,
1 ~~ VT
86 A YOUNG ROVER.
in my life felt nearer to death, not even when I was washed over-
board on the coast of Africa. But the squall passed almost as
quickly as it had come, and we were able to right the schooner;
and though she was much strained and half-full'of water, we were
able to keep her afloat by hard work at the pumps, and in due
time got back to Calcutta in safety.
Then I also had a chance of seeing some Indian animals whilst
I was in India; and I thought it real good fun when I was allowed
to go up into the country and into the jungles sometimes to hunt
with some of my friends-not the foxes or hares of Old England,
but great, dangerous creatures, who, notwithstanding their beauty,
will certainly have to be got rid of, sooner or later, as India
becomes more truly civilized. Tigers, for instance: there is no
saying how many men fall a victim to them every year. So tiger-
hunting has its use.
And of course, boys always-or almost always-like anything
so exciting as a hunt.
But sometimes I only went excursions early in the morning,
when it was not too hot to walk or ride; and I found some very
nice companions to accompany me, I can tell you; so that I shall
always have a pleasant recollection of India.
And I heard some extraordinary stories about these wild
creatures whilst I was there-not always Indian stories, but such
as had to do with wild animals in some part of the world; because,
you see, some of my Indian friends had been travellers, and rather
great travellers in their way.
I made a good many acquaintances whilst we were staying in
Calcutta, and not bad fellows either. Our mate put me in the way
of some; and one of the young ones of our crew introduced me to
chums of his own; so it was not such a bad time.
""' I I,
L AN INIA O
LEOPARD AND INDIAN OXEN.
88 A YOUNG ROVER.
This one that I recall at this moment must have either been a
very old Indian story, or else an African one; because there is a
lion in it. And we do not hear of lions in India now, though a
hundred years ago people did. And once on a time there were
lions in Syria, too, we know, by the Bible story of the lion
and bear that David killed. Now they are gone; for they
have been hunted out, just as once wolves were hunted out of
Some people do not believe that lions ever did live in India,
because they do not hear of them now; but I have read stories of
a noble lady who was fond of hunting them somewhere about a
hundred years ago; so that you see it is not so very long since
the king of the beasts reigned in his forests there.
Well, however, this was the story:-
A hunter hearing a tremendous howling in one particular spot,
got up into some place from which he could see what was going
on; and then he saw a rather uncommon scene.
There were four animals all in a heap-a deer, a leopard, a
tiger, and a lion; and as far as the man could judge, the leopard
had at first sprung on to the deer, then the tiger on him to take
away his prey, and lastly the lion had sprung upon them all;
and whilst he pinioned the leopard to the spot, his great fangs
were in the tiger's throat.
It was a horrible sight-so many fine creatures all in rage or
pain together; yet, as old Dr. Watts says in his little poem about
dogs and cats, and bears and lions,
"It is their nature too."
The Bible speaks somewhere about "lions lying down with
the lambs," and none of the wild beasts fighting or destroying,
LION, TIGER, AND LEOPARD
':I -,,- -. .. _ ,-: ,: '--- -.
' : ... -. ..... L - -- : _---- --- - ---
.,,i .., ' ,-- .-._ _: -. ,:. ':
S... .- -.:_ ,
L T'[T [G .D"i,]OPD
90 A YOUNG ROVER; OR,
and boy as I was, I recollect thinking of those verses when I
heard that story.
Lions, it seems, have curious ways; and sometimes they take
fancies to animals that you would not suppose they would
Now, I'll show you a picture. See, there is a lioness inside a
den, and she is holding a dog with her paw. She is licking the
dog, too-not biting her, as you might suppose. See, the dog
does not struggle, for those two are great friends.
But enough of my lion stories;
The captain having recovered from his illness, and the "Harry"
being once more brave and hearty too, we sailed away from
Calcutta for home as straight as we could; and we had some very
amusing companions, I must tell you, a good part of the way.
But straight as we meant to go, we succeeded in going very
crooked; for no sooner were we fairly out at sea, than a very
strong wind began to blow, to which our captain thought it best
to give way. Accordingly we let ourselves be driven right down
into the Southern Ocean; and in the course of that little run we
came across a very unpleasant thing-I mean a waterspout.
So, being ready with my pencil, and having nothing very
particular to do at that moment, I made a little sketch of it, to
show Katie, with a number of others. Afterwards I wondered
that I had not been too frightened; but, at the time, I had no
idea of danger.
The water seemed to be drawn up from the sea and down from
the sky at the same moment; and the column of water appeared to
be travelling along.
If we had got into it I don't know what would have happened
to us; but we managed to steer clear of it. I drew it to show
_ r \ 'i \ '
'1 jo '
LIOI ESS AND DOG. 2
~ ~ ~ ~ ...
92 A YOUNG OVER.
Katie that I had got over my dislike to drawing, of which she
was so fond, and which she always wanted me to take up, that we
might go sketching together.
WATERSPOUT AT SEA.
When the gale subsided we got back to our course; but I
must tell you that we thus had to put in at the island of Borneo,
and so got an opportunity of seeing the Dyaks, as the people are
called, at one of their strange night dances.
DANCE OF THE DYAKS.
94 A YOUNG ROVER.
Soon after that we were sailing right up the old Red Sea, and
to my great delight I found that we were to stay in port there a
few days, and that some of us were to get leave to ramble about
and see as many of the ruins as we could, whilst they were getting
cargo and a fresh supply of water on board.
I cannot tell you, my children, how strange it seemed to me
to be in the very country where Joseph lived and was such a
great man; and to think of his father Jacob's coming to him,
and how they lived in the land for so many years with their
children; and then of Moses, and how he brought the nation right
out of Egypt again, across the Red Sea.
But I knew that in those days that was a great kingdom, and
that the people had skill and learning, too. And the ruins that I
saw reminded me of all that.
Some of them are splendid.
I rushed about as young fellows will to see everything I could,
and now I must try and tell you what I did see.
Well, I remember a very old gateway, which once belonged to
an old temple, and was built, oh an immense time ago. It was
called the temple of Karnak, and this gateway is all covered over
with picture-writing. Of course, I could not read that; but I
wished I could.
They say that this gateway was most likely built even before
the time of Joseph's great-grandfather; and yet it looks quite
It is the dry air, I suppose, that suits all these old things, and
keeps them looking quite fresh. It scarcely ever rains in Egypt,
and buildings do not decay and fall into ruin nearly so soon
as they would do in countries where they would be exposed to
damp and frost.
,.. t : :_ ---:
S';;, 'I------:___-- ------
.--~- -: - :
GBTWP bT IiRB..
MONUMENTS OF ANCIENT EGYPT.
FAMINE IN AN EASTERN CITY.
98 A YOUNG BOVER.
Then-I recollect one beautiful view that we got, standing near
some other fine old ruins.
There was a graceful little palm tree in front, and some men
in Eastern dress under it; and then, a good way off, we could see
several of the Pyramids. Now, you know, those Pyramids are
among the wonders of Egypt; and it is supposed that the old
kings built them as huge tombs for themselves. But I do not
think that people are quite sure. They must have taken a long
time to build; but then the kings had plenty of slaves taken in
war, and some of them treated the Israelites-the children of old
Jacob-as slaves, you recollect.
They had to work, whether they could or not, and were beaten
if they could not; so, I suppose, many of them died.
Well, I went up one of those Pyramids, and got a great view
Those Egyptians are not a great people now. The country is
one of the lowest of all countries; and the poor Copts who live
there are ignorant and often miserable.
I saw another old city, where the people were said to be half
starved; but that is sometimes because the rulers are so cruel, and
take so much from them for the government, that the poor things
have very little left.
There are slaves there, too; and I have heard and read, since
I was a boy, of shocking cruelties practised on them at times by
their masters. It is something to think of, that that country, which
was once so high, should have come down so very low; but it is
just as the Bible said it would be. Egypt is the "basest," that is,
the lowest, of all kingdoms now.
But Egypt was t ,all times the enemy :of God's own chosen
nation, the Jews:; -and God's enemies never, prosper.