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Sketches of Our Life at Sarawak   By: (1817-1886)

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First Page:

[Cover]

[Illustration: HAPPILY HE HAD A STOUT WALKING STICK, AND AT ONCE FELLED THE REPTILE.

Frontispiece. Page 26.]

SKETCHES OF OUR LIFE AT SARAWAK

BY HARRIETTE McDOUGALL.

WITH MAP.

PUBLISHED UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE TRACT COMMITTEE.

LONDON: SOCIETY FOR PROMOTING CHRISTIAN KNOWLEDGE, NORTHUMBERLAND AVENUE, CHARING CROSS, W.C.; 43, QUEEN VICTORIA STREET, E.C.; 26, ST. GEORGE'S PLACE, HYDE PARK CORNER, S.W. BRIGHTON: 135, NORTH STREET. NEW YORK: E. & J. B. YOUNG AND CO.

CONTENTS.

PART I.

CHAPTER PAGE

I. INTRODUCTORY 7

II. THE COURT HOUSE 13

III. COLLEGE HILL 21

IV. PIRATES 32

V. THE CHURCH AND THE SCHOOL 45

VI. THE GIRLS 58

VII. THE LUNDUS 68

VIII. A BOAT JOURNEY 82

IX. CONTINUATION OF THE TRIP TO REJANG 92

PART II.

X. RETURN TO SARAWAK 105

XI. CHINESE INSURRECTION 120

XII. CHINESE INSURRECTION ( Continued ) 139

XIII. EVENTS OF 1857 157

XIV. THE MALAY PLOT 174

PART III.

XV. THE CHILDREN'S CHAPTER 189

XVI. ILLANUN PIRATES 204

XVII. A MALAY WEDDING 215

XVIII. LAST YEARS AT SARAWAK 228

XIX. THE ISLAND OF BORNEO 239

PART I.

[Map: BORNEO]

SKETCHES OF OUR LIFE AT SARAWAK.

CHAPTER I.

INTRODUCTORY.

Nearly thirty years ago I published a little book of "Letters from Sarawak, addressed to a Child." This book is now out of print, and, on looking it over with a view to republication, I think it will be better to extend the story over the twenty years that Sarawak was our home, which will give some idea of the gradual progress of the mission.

This progress was often unavoidably impeded by the struggles of the infant State; for war drowns the voice of the missionary, and though the Sarawak Government always discouraged the Dyak practice of taking the heads of their enemies, still it could not at once be checked, and every expedition against lawless tribes, however righteous in its object, excited the old superstitions of those wild people. When their warriors returned from an expedition, the women of the tribe met them with dance and song, receiving the heads they brought with ancient ceremonies "fondling the heads," as it was called; and for months afterwards keeping up, by frequent feasts, in which these heads were the chief attraction, the heathen customs which it was the object of the missionary to discourage.

I dare say, when we first settled at Sarawak, we thought that twenty years would plant Christian communities, and build Christian churches all over the country: but it is as well that we cannot overlook the future; and perhaps, considering the many difficulties which arose from time to time, from the missionaries themselves, and the unsettled country in which they laboured, we ought not to expect more results than have appeared. At any rate we have much to be thankful for, and as every year makes Sarawak a more important State, consolidates its Government, and extends civilization to its subjects, we may look for more success for the missionaries, who can now point to the peace and prosperity of the people, and say, "This is the fruit of Christianity and Christian rulers."

In giving a short account of our life in Borneo, I shall avoid alike all political questions, or, as much as possible, individual histories among the English community. It is already so long ago since we lived in that lovely place, that events, trials, joys, and the usual vicissitudes of life, are wrapt in that mellowing haze of the past, which, while it dims the vividness of feeling, throws a robe of charity over all, and perhaps causes actors and actions to assume a more true proportion to one another than when we walked amongst them... Continue reading book >>




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