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their kindness, but partly also by reason of their own privations. It is in the school of adversity that the virtues are best learnt, and, their own sufferings teach them to feel for the sufferings of others,-miseris succurrere discunt. It was at this time, too, that he wrote the far-famed Eulogy on Women; and, as it has been altered and abridged in the thousand transcripts which have been made of it, we shall be excused by every reader of good feelings and good taste for giving it in its original form :
“ I have observed among all nations that the women ornament themselves more than the men; that, wherever found, they are the same kind, civil, obliging, humane, tender beings; that they are ever inclined to be gay and cheerful, timorous and modest. They do not hesitate, like man, to perform a hospitable or generous action; not haughty, nor arrogant, nor supercilious, but full of courtesy and fond of society; industrious, economical, ingenuous; more liable, in general, to err than man, but in general, also, more virtuous, and performing more good actions than he. I never addressed myself in the language of decency and friendship to a woman, whether civilized or savage, without receiving a decent and friendly answer. With man, it has often been otherwise. In wandering over the barren plains of inhospitable Denmark, through honest Sweden, frozen Lapland, rude and churlish Finland, unprincipled Russia, and the wide-spread regions of the wandering Tartar, if hungry, dry, cold, wet, or sick, woman has ever been friendly to me, and uniformly so: and to add to this virtue, so worthy of the appellation of benevolence, these actions have been performed in so free and so kind a manner, that if I was dry, I drank the sweet draught, and if hungry, ate the coarse morsel, with a double relish.” p. 264.
Upon the very difficult subject, the diversity of the human complexion, he still urges his favourite hypothesis, and remarks:
“Upon the whole, as I have said before, with respect to difference of colour with the Indian and European, they appear to me to be the effect of natural causes. I have given much attention to the subject on this continent. Its vast extent, and the variety of its inhabitants, afford the best field in the world in which to examine it. By the same gentle gradation, by which I passed from the height of civilization at Petersburg to incivilization in Siberia, I also passed from the fair European to the copper-coloured Tartar; I say the copper-coloured Tartar, but there is the same variety of colour among the Tartars in Siberia as among the other nations of the earth. The journal of a Russian officer, which I have seen, informs me that the Samoiedes, among whom he lived two years, are fairer than the Yaktui, who are of a light olive, and fairer than the Tongusians, or the Buretti, who are copper-coloured. Yet, the three last mentioned tribes are all Mongul Tartars. The greater part of mankind, compared with European civilization, are uncivilized, and this part are all darker than the other. There are no white savages, and few barbarous people that are not brown or black.” p. 243.
These speculations of Ledyard will be thought to receive strong confirmation from the facts stated by so candid and accurate a witness as the late Bishop Heber. In speaking of adventurers to India from Persia, Greece, Turkey, and Arabia, all white men, he says, “it is remarkable to observe how surely all these classes of men in a few generations, even without any intermarriages with the Hindoos, assume the deep olive-tint, little less dark than a negro, which seems natural to the climate. The Portuguese natives form unions among themselves alone, or, if they can, with Europeans. Yet, the Portuguese have, during a three hundred years' residence in India, become as black as Caffres. Surely this goes far to disprove the assertion, which is sometimes made, that climate alone is insufficient to account for the difference between the negro and the European. It is true, that in the negro are other peculiarities which the Indian has not, and to which the Portuguese colonist shows no symptom of approximation, and which undoubtedly do not appear to follow so naturally from the climate, as that swarthiness of complexion which is the sole distinction between the Hindoo and the European. But if heat produces one change, other peculiarities of climate may produce other and additional changes, and when such peculiarities have three or four thousand years to operate in, it is not easy to fix any limits to their power. I am inclined, after all, to suspect that our European vanity leads us astray in supposing that our own is the primitive complexion, which I should rather suppose was that of the Indian, half-way between the two extremes, and, perhaps, the most agreeable to the eye and instinct of the majority of the hu
A colder climate, and a constant use of clothes, may have blanched the skin as effectually as a burning sun, and nakedness may have tanned it; and I am encouraged in this hypothesis by observing, that of animals, the natural colours are generally dusky and uniform, while whiteness and a variety of tint almost invariably follow domestication, shelter from the elements, and a mixed and unnatural diet. Thus, while hardships, additional exposure, a greater degree of heat, and other circumstances with wbich we are unacquainted, may have deteriorated the Hindoo into a negro, opposite causes may have changed him into the progressively lighter tints of the Chinese, the Persian, the Turk, the Russian, and the Englishman!"
There is much good sense in the following remarks on the inherent difficulty of making correct vocabularies of rude tongues:
" The different sounds of the same letters, and of the same combinations of letters, in the languages of Europe, present an insurmountable
obstacle to making a vocabulary, which shall be of general use. The different manner, also, in which persons of the same language would write the words of a new language, would be such, that a stranger might suppose them to be two languages. Most uncultivated languages are very difficult to be orthographized in another language. They are, generally, guttural; but when not so, the ear of a foreigner cannot accommodate itself to the inflection of the speaker's voice, soon enough to catch the true sound. This must be done instantaneously; and even in a language with which we are acquainted, we are not able to do it for several
years. I seize, for instance, the accidental moment, when a savage is inclined to give me the names of things. The medium of this conversation is only signs. The savage may wish to give me the word for head, and lays his hand on the top of his head. I am not certain whether he means the head, or the top of the head, or perhaps the hair of the head. He may wish to say leg, and puts his hand to the calf. I cannot tell whether he means the leg or the calf, or flesh, or the flesh. There are other difficulties. The island of Onalaska is on the coast of America, opposite to Asia. There are a few Russian traders on it. Being there with Captain Cook, I was walking one day on the shore in company with a native, who spoke the Russian language. I did not understand it. I was writing the names of several things, and pointed to the ship, supposing that he would understand that I wanted the name of it. He answered me in a phrase, which in Russ meant, I know. I wrote down, a ship. I gave
him some snuff, which he took, and held out his hand for more, making use of a word, which signified in Russ a little. I wrote, more.
While Ledyard was thus beguiling his time in this dreary climate where the mercury freezes in the open air in fifteen minutes, he was agreeably surprised by the arrival of a Captain Billings, whom he had intimately known, during his voyage, under Captain Cook, in the character of assistant astronomer, and who was then in the service of the Empress. Billings invited the American traveller to accompany him to Irkutsk, to which, under existing circuinstances, he readily consented, and they set out on the 29th of December, in sledges up the river Lena, and in seventeen days they reached Irkutsk, a distance of fifteen hundred miles. . When he had been here about six weeks, he was suddenly arrested, by an order from the Empress, under the pretext of being a French spy, and hurried off to Moscow. As his second visit to Irkutsk is not mentioned in his journal, the particulars of his arrest are taken, by his biographer, from Lauer's Expedition to the Northern parts of Russia :
“ In the evening of the 24th of February," says Lauer," while I was playing at cards with the Brigad and some company of his, a secretary belonging to one of the courts of justice came in and told us with great concern, that the Governor-General had received positive orders from the Empress, immediately to send one of the expedition, an Eng
lishman, under guard to the private Inquisition at Moscow, but that he did not know the name of the person, and that Captain Billings was with a private party at the Governor General's. Now, as Ledyard and I were the only Englishmen here, I could not help smiling at the news, when two hussars came into the room and told me that the commandant. wished to speak to me immediately. The consternation into which the visitors were thrown is not to be described. I assured them that it must be a mistake, and went with the guards to the commandant. There I found Mr. Ledyard under arrest. He told me that he had sent to Captain Billings, but he would not come to him. He then began to explain his situation, and said he was taken up as a French spy, whereas Captain Billings could prove the contrary, but he supposed that he knew nothing of the matter, and requested that I would inform him. I did so, but the captain assured me that it was an absolute order from the Empress, and that he could not help him. He, however, sent him a few roubles, and gave him a pelisse; and I procured him his linen quite wet from the wash-tub. Ledyard took a friendly leave of me, desired his remembrance to his friends, and with astonishing composure leaped into the kibitka, and drove off, with two guards, one on each side. I wished to travel with him a little way, but was not permitted. I therefore returned to my company, and explained the matter to them; but though this eased their minds with regard to my fate, it did not restore their harmony." p. 100.
It appears by some of Ledyard's letters to his friends, and a few irregular notes in his journal, that he was hurried along “with amazing rapidity to Moscow, and from thence to the confines of Poland, where he was set at liberty--that he travelled about four thousand miles in six weeks-that he suffered severely from the severity of the season, bad food and uncomfortable travelling, by which his health was materially affectedthat all this was endured " without cause or accusation, except what appeared in the mysterious wisdom depicted in the face of his sergeant-and, that he was released under an injunction of never returning to the Empress's dominions again on peril of being hanged. The avowed motive of the Empress, as appears by a note from Count Segur to the Marquis La Fayette, in July, 1823, for the seizure of Ledyard was humanity!-"she would not render herself guilty of the death of this courageous American, by furthering a journey so fraught with danger, as that he proposed to undertake alone.” Such a pretext could deceive
It is impossible to doubt that the harsh treatment that ill-fated traveller experienced, originated in political or commercial jealousy-either in the unwillingness of Catherine to have her new possessions on the American coast seen by a citizen of the United States, as Count Segur suggests, or in the wish of the Russian American Company to guard against rivals
in that fur trade which they found so profitable, as Mr. Sparks thinks more probable on very cogent reasons.
Ledyard found his way to Konigsburg, where, by the sale of a draft on Sir Joseph Banks, for five guineas, he was enabled to get back to London, after an absence of nearly a year and a half. As soon as he reached the British metropolis, he called on his benefartor Sir Joseph Banks, who, hearing his story, expressed a lively sympathy in his misfortunes, and recommended him to the African Association as a fit person for their purpose of exploring the interior of Africa. The account which the secretary of the Association gives of his first interview with Ledyard, is too descriptive of his person as well as characteristical of his decision to be omitted. “Before I had learnt from the note the name and business of my visitor, I was struck with the manliness of his person, the breadth of his chest, the openness of his countenance, and the inquietude of his eye. I spread the map of Africa before him, and tracing a line from Cairo to Sennaar, and from thence westwardly in the latitude and supposed direction of the Niger, I told him that was the route, by which I was anxious that Africa might, if possible, be explored. He said he should think himself singularly fortunate to be trusted with the adventure. I asked him when he would set out. To-morrow morning,' was his answer.”
As the Association had been "for some time fruitlessly inquiring for some person to travel through the continent of Africa,” arrangements were soon made between him and the committee of the society. They appropriated a sum of money to defray his expenses. His instructions were “few, simple, and direct." He was to repair to Egypt, by way of Paris and Marseilles, and from Cairo was to travel across the African continent, making such obscrvations as he could, and reporting the results to his employers. "At no period of his life, says his biographer, had he reflected with so much satisfaction on his condition or his prospects. His letters, written at this time, show that he was elated with the liveliest hopes. On the morning of his departure from London, June 30th, 1788, he said to the secretary of the Association 66
my distresses have been greater than I have ever owned, or ever will own to any man.
Such evils are terrible to bear, but they never yet had power to turn me from my purpose. If I live, I will faithfully perform, in its utmost extent, my engagements to the Society; and if I perish in the attempt, my
honor will be safe, for death cancels all bonds." He proceeded from London to Paris, and after spending a few days with Mr. Jefferson, La Fayette, and his other friends, he went to Marseilles, where he embarked for Alexandria. He