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Among other impressions produced during the voyage were three which, as confirmatory of prior convictions, deserve to be set down here. The first was the incapacity of the Dutch Afrikander to see any side-or, rather, the merits of any sidesave his own. His instinctive impulse to regard South Africa as his exclusive and God-given inheritance, and to regard his race as the traditional sufferer from imperial injustice and wrong, has blinded him to his own shortcomings and culpabilities, not less than to the claims of Great Britain and her colonists on the continent. Not less impressed was I by the evidence of Holland's potential part in the ordaining of events. I had never before fully realised how passionate had become the craving of the patriotic Hollander for the creation of a great Dutch-speaking republic in South Africa, where the Batavian language and nationality might be perpetuated long after the little parent land may have been swallowed up in a Teutonic empire. A dread that Holland as an independent national entity may disappear in the expansion of imperial Germany has been not more influential than the hope that a new Holland on a vaster scale might arise in the southern hemisphere. This hope has, I believe, been quenched by the war; but it is a question worth consideration whether recognition of the language might not avail, as in Canada, to soothe racial susceptibilities and abate national rancour. The last conclusion to which I need refer was that jealousy of Anglo-Saxon pretensions and achievements as a worldpower is the mainspring of foreign hostility and dislike. Had England not spread her wings as a pre-eminently successful colonising power over the far places of the earth, had she not claimed to be what she is the mother of innumerable realms,' the parent of free peoples in free States-the antagonism shown towards her would never have been evoked. Her greatness has been the goad of international animosity.
At early daybreak one morning we were close to Cape Guardafui, the easternmost point of Africa. Despite the latitude -only eleven degrees north of the Equator-the crisp, invigorating air made the bridge deck a pleasant resort from the muggy regions below. We were close to the shore, whose striking outlines already glowed with the rosiness of the sudden dawn. First came False Cape, a bald craggy headland, absolutely void of vegetation, and a landmark that has at times drawn ships to a sudden doom. Further on is the true Cape,' rather like Cape Point (of Good Hope) in aspect, but bearing on the scarred seams
of its face the clearly defined semblance of a lion's countenance. Thus is the kingly and typical beast of the Dark Continent reproduced by Nature at two out of its four extremities, the Lion's Head and Lion's Rump at Capetown being matched by the Lion's Face at Guardafui.
Twenty-three years ago two near relatives, travelling northward on their wedding journey, suffered shipwreck on this desolate and forbidding shore, and the story of their adventures and hardships comes back with painful vividness as we steam past the beetling cliffs that witnessed their wonderful escape from deadly perils. They had travelled by the Union Company's coasting steamboat Kaffir as far as Zanzibar, and there transhipped into the British India Company's steamer Cashmere. Up to this point the voyage had been fair and pleasant. Among their fellow-passengers were two missionaries who, with their families, were returning after years of toil to England. It was a fine night, with only a moderate sea running. About nine o'clock, when some had gone below for the night and others were on deck, a shock, a quiver, and a muffled crash combined with the sudden racing of the screw to tell the tale of disaster. The vessel had manifestly struck on rocks, and terror pervaded the ship. Rushing to the side, the dark loom of the land and the white lines of the breakers showed that the vessel was aground on a reef not far from shore. The usual orders were given, and steps taken. Boats were unloosed; passengers were bidden to muster. Though the ship reeled and lurched, though the seas dashed at times over the bulwarks, and the escaping steam roared out of the pipes, more or less composure prevailed. It was no easy matter in the dark to proceed with the necessary preparations for transporting the lives on board to an absolutely unknown strand, but the boats were hurriedly manned and swung out. In one was placed my sister, together with the missionaries and their children. Her husband remained on board, anxiously watching operations. He soon perceived how perilous the position was, as the boat, hanging free at the davits, swung to and fro with each lurch of the ship, every concussion with the ship's side threatening its destruction. Recognising the inevitable, he called out to his wife, 'When the boat swings to again, jump to me.' She had on her knee one of the missionary children, but when next the little craft dashed, with the vessel's starboard reel, towards the ship, she caught her husband's outstretched arms, and with her burden was dragged on to the deck. Nor was it a moment too soon, for when the boat swung off again her tackle
parted, and out into the foaming sea her helpless occupants were hurled. The death-a death-cry-that went up from them rang for weeks in the listeners' ears.
Letting his wife and the child down through the skylight into the saloon for shelter from the confusion on deck, my brother gathered together such portables as could be carried and awaited the next orders. There were no more catastrophes. The other boats fared better, and in due course the passengers, diminished, alas! in number, with the crew, were all safely landed, and passed the rest of the night till dawn in such discomfort and anxiety as may be imagined. But the supreme fact of immediate safety made present and prospective sufferings seem light by comparison with the fate that had been so mercifully averted. With daylight, of course, came other troubles. Want of food and shelter on that bare, pitiless, and sun-scorched shore had to be faced, but provisions were obtained from the stranded ship, and rough restingplaces were rigged up. Arabs from the neighbourhood appeared on the scene and were bribed, by money and offers of spoil from the wreckage, to supply camels for transport to the nearest settlement. Notorious for their hostility to Europeans, they were almost as great a source of anxiety as the seas had been, but they carried out their engagements with fair fidelity. A three days' march across a desert land brought the ocean's outcasts to a little village on the Gulf of Aden, from whence after a day or two's delay they were conveyed by a reeking and pestiferous dhow to the nearest seaport, there to be picked up by a coasting steamer and carried over to Aden. From thence all was safety, delicious comfort, and restful sailing. The dark memories of those evil days, however, long haunted the minds of the sufferers, while the little child, so cruelly orphaned, after being tenderly cared for, was handed over, well and strong, to its guardians in the old country.
While we coasted swiftly past the scenes of these dire experiences all was fair and blithesome. We were passing westward from the land of barbarism and from the younger world, and the mighty spirit of the old, old North seemed to meet us with its embraces. How enkindling that feeling is only those who have lived long in distant undeveloped countries can properly understand. A day later and we cast anchor at Aden, England's second Gibraltar, and reached the beaten highway of the world's eastern commerce. Our Boer companions again betrayed anxiety on being in British waters, under the guns of a British citadel and close to British gunboats. Reassured by their fellow
passengers, some of them ventured ashore, and came back manifestly impressed by the magnitude of the defences and the impregnability of the arsenal. They were rather surprised to find how little notice was taken of their presence. Two or three sturdy Tommies' came aboard and were scowled at by some of our shipmates, one of whom murmured audibly: I hate them.' In her eyes they symbolised deserted homes, blighted prospects, and baffled ambitions. As for honest, confiding, simple-hearted Tommy, he was divided between a desire to have a smack at them Boers 'and a yearning to get home again after five years' service at Rangoon and other tropical stations.
Faithful, uncomplaining, heroic Tommy! I have seen you lately in your tens of thousands tramping patiently on the brown soil of South Africa, ready, fearless, enduring, eager to fight your country's battles and to uphold her imperilled flag. I find you here, on the verge of western Asia, under these cinderous, sunbaked crags, just the same quiet, homely, unmurmuring fellow, not the less cheerful in the discharge of duty, and quite as glad to drink the health of your countrymen in a glass of German beer on board a German mail-boat!
Another ten days' voyaging over glassy seas, amidst stifling heat, brought us to Naples. In spite of the combustible elements on board we had passed a month in perfect peace and harmony. The social atmosphere of the ship matched the weather. Whatever bitterness of feeling might ferment did not betray itself on the surface. Briton and Boer talked together and even discussed the war, with no apparent loss of temper. Mr. Kruger's birthday (which is also the anniversary of the ultimatum) was celebrated, I believe, in both saloons, by some of his late subjects with the usual consumption of champagne, but the tactful captain forbade any political allusions or references, and the functions were known only to the participants. Absolutely uneventful as regards the common incidents of sea life, the Voyage was full of interest and instruction in other ways. When we
landed at Naples I was more persuaded than ever that the war now closing had been inevitable; that England has been fighting, not the Boers only, but foes and forces it is needless now to indicate; and that all will come right in South Africa if the lines of policy laid down by both imperial and colonial statesmen are pursued with steadfast purpose and conciliatory temper.
A BOER'S OPINION,
[It seemed that a review of Mr. Paul Botha's notable pronouncement would form an interesting pendant to the experiences of the distinguished writer and traveller who has signed himself Anglo-Africanus,' and there follows accordingly a notice by a frequent contributor to these pages who also desires anonymity.—ED. CORNHILL.]
ORIGINALLY written in Dutch by Paul M. Botha, and translated into English by his son, this little pamphlet is certainly worthy of our serious attention. Within the space of a few pages-less than fifty-it clearly and succinctly explains the causes from within and without which have brought about the present deplorable state of affairs in South Africa. We have perhaps arrived at a surface understanding of most of these causes, but it will come as a surprise to many that a typical Boer should perceive them so plainly and judge them so fairly and impartially.
For twenty-one years Mr. Paul M. Botha had sat as a member of the Volksraad of the late Orange Free State, and no one who reads his genuine, manly burst of grief and indignation can doubt that he is a true patriot, and that his voice and vote would always have been found on the side of moderation and
It is inexpressibly pathetic to think of this old man, belonging, as he says himself, to the soil of the country, one of a family which has fought and worked for the creation of the Orange Free State, having to stand helplessly by and in his old age see his country ruined, its homesteads burned, and its people practically reduced to beggary. Nor does it make it any easier for him to bear these frightful calamities to know that he foresaw and did all in his power to avert them. So lately as September 1899 did Mr. Botha try to hold a meeting at Kroonstad to protest against the then fast-approaching war, but the madness which is the precursor of ruin had seized on his people, and he tells us that he was not even allowed to raise his voice.
In a fair and manly spirit, but with a clear perception of the relations of effect to cause, Mr. Botha first deals with what he may well call England's mistakes.' With these we are ourselves by this time tolerably familiar, but in his enumeration of them