Forty Years in South China eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 165 pages of information about Forty Years in South China.

On a subsequent trip to Chiang-chiu, Mr. Talmage writes:  “The valley of the Chiang-chiu river is one of the most beautiful regions I ever saw.  It is densely populated.  In every direction are villages, I might almost say without number, rendered most beautiful by their plentiful supply of large banyans and various other trees of luxuriant foliage.  The intermediate spaces between the villages are fields covered with vegetation most dense and beautiful.  Through the centre of this scene may be traced the course of the river with its numberless canals, like the Nile of Egypt, giving fertility wherever nature or the art of man conducts its waters.”

BREAKING AND BURNING OF IDOLS.

“Feb. 27, 1848.  Today an old lady and her two sons declared themselves to be worshipers of Jesus by presenting their idols to Bro.  Pohlman.  On the evening of the last day of their last year they had burnt their ancestral tablets.  It was an interesting sight, said Bro.  Pohlman, to see the old lady, supported by one of her sons, breaking her idols and making a voluntary and public surrender of them at the chapel.

“March 1st.  When the old lady returned from the chapel on Sunday evening she was full of zeal, and began preaching to her neighbors on the folly of idolatry.  She was so successful that another old lady living in the same house with her has made a bonfire and burned all her idols except one.  This, being made of clay, was not combustible.  This she presented to Pohlman today.  He asked her whether she gave it up willingly.  She said she rejoiced to do it.  She said she had not yet destroyed her ancestral tablets.  Pohlman told her he did not wish her to do it rashly.  She must reflect on the subject, and when she became convinced that the worship of them was a sin against God she must give them up immediately.

“March 29th.  This afternoon Bro.  Hickok and wife and Bro.  Maclay arrived at Amoy on their way to Foochow.  They had a long passage from Hongkong, having been out twenty-nine days.”  The distance from Hongkong to Amoy is less than three hundred miles, and is made in twenty-four hours by an ordinary coast steamer.

THE CHINESE BOAT RACE AND ITS ORIGIN.

“June 5th.  Monday.  To-day being the fifth day of the fifth month (Chinese), was the festival of dragon boat-racing.  Several dragon boats filled with rowers, rather paddlers, were contesting this afternoon in the harbor.  The water was thronged with boats filled with Chinese to see the sport.  Many of these boats, and almost all the junks in the neighborhood, were decked with green branches, also with streamers flying.  The origin of this festival is said to be as follows:  In very ancient times one of the first officers, perhaps Prime Minister of government, gave offense to the emperor.  The emperor banished him.  He was so downcast on account

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Forty Years in South China from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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