« PreviousContinue »
of course lies in the proof which it gives of Akbar's congeniality with the Hindūs, and of their desire to identify him with themselves. It is not improbable that he himself may have favoured the idea set out in the slok. We learn from Badaoni (Blochmann's translation of the 'Ain,' 184) that Akbar had been accustomed from his youth up to celebrate the Hom sacrifice, and also (p. 180,ib.) that the doctrine of transmigration had taken a deep root in his heart, and that he approved of the saying, "There is no religion in which the schism of transmigration has not taken firm root. The slok is in Hindū rather than Sanscrit, and the words of the first line also give the date 1598, according to a system explained in Bühler's " Indian Palæography," p. 8o. Bas is the Sanscrit vasir, equal 8.
Randar is kandhra, meaning a fissure or opening, and as there are considered to be nine openings in the human body the word has come to stand for nine, Hindu 90.
Ban is vana, or arrow, and stands for five, in allusion to the five arrows of Cupid.
Chandra is the moon, and may fitly stand for one, or for one thousand as here.
The other words of the slok (except darathāri) do not seem to present much difficulty. It would be interesting to know if the slok is still known in Allahabad, and if the book from which the Pandits are said to have read it is procurable.
Ilah Yar describes the large assemblage of Hindus which takes place in the month of Magh, when the sun enters Capricorn, and observes that the tax on the pilgrims is a considerable source of revenue. He also tells a story about Akbar's requesting Birbal to bring home a fool, and the latter's replying that one fool was a small matter, for he could, if required, bring a whole city of fools. The allusion was to old Allahabad, which was so badly situated as to be subject every year to inundation.
* See also Badãoni II., 300, for a passage translated by Rahatsek in his little book on Akbar's repudiation of Islam, p. 47, where Akbar is described as telling his foster-brother, the Khan-i-'Azam, that he had found absolute proof of the truth of metempsychosis.
THE CHÂTEAU DE RAMEZAY AT
BY MAJOR A. C. YATE, I.S.C.
CANADA is a country which presents to the traveller a very wide range of interests. If mere sight-seeing be the aim, there is every variety of scenery-wood, water, mountain and prairie, rugged peaks and wooded slopes, broad fertile valleys and wild glens and canyons, snows and glaciers, leaping torrents, foaming rapids, rushing streams with waters brown as those of a Scotch burn, and wide navigable rivers and lakes on which ocean and inland steamers ply. He who would study the industries of the country will find the mines, forests, and salmon fisheries of British Columbia, the horse and cattle ranches of the North-west Territory, the wheat lands of Manitoba, the farms, pastures, and lumber of Ontario and Quebec, the bountiful fisheries and coal mines of the Maritime Provinces, the fur trade of the Far North, the export of wheat and cattle, and a score of other subjects all bound up with the commercial and industrial development of the Dominion. For the man of science there is no lack of interest. 1897 the British Association made Toronto the scene of its annual meeting. For the student of history and antiquities there would appear to be a less wide field. The existence of an extinct and prehistoric people has been traced throughout the Continent of North America, from Lake Superior to the Gulf of Mexico, and from the Alleghanies to the Rocky Mountains. This people, of whom nothing is known, except what their remains reveal, has received the name of the "Mound-Builders." They are supposed to have been of the same race as the ancient people of Mexico, Central America, and Peru. The various theories held as to their origin represent them as having reached America from the east, probably from Asia, either via Behring Straits or the islands of the Pacific, or from the west via the Canaries and Antilles. When Europeans first discovered and explored North America, the only living inhabitants that they found were those to whom has been given the name of "Red Indians." Of their origin nothing is known. Their history dates from the voyages of Sebastian Cabot in 1498, Gaspard Corteréal (1501), and Jacques Cartier in 1534 and 1535. The relations of these European explorers with the natives were at first friendly, so much so that an Indian chief of the country near Cape Gaspé allowed Jacques Cartier to take two of his sons back with him to France. Gaspard Corteréal, however, is said to have kidnapped fifty-seven natives, and carried them off to be sold as slaves; and on the termination of his second voyage Jacques Cartier, of whom better and wiser conduct might have been expected, lured Donnacona (the Algonquin chief, whose guest he had been all the winter at
* The authorities I have used are: "The Catalogue of the Museum of the Château de Ramezay," published by the Numismatic and Antiquarian Society of Montreal; F. Parkman's "Montcalm and Wolfe;" Withrow's "History of Canada"; "The Golden Dog" (Le Chien d'or), by W. Kirby. I am indebted to Sir Henri Joly de Lotbinière for information and suggestions most kindly given.
Stadacona, close to where Quebec now is) and nine of his head men on board his ships, La Grande and La Petite Hermine, and carried them off to France. There they all died. Since those days the history of the Red Indians has been one of perpetual warfare with the "white man." The barbarities which they perpetrated on the early Jesuits and settlers, and their ruthless massacres and tortures of French and English troops and colonists in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries have been atoned for by their subsequent gradual decimation and complete subjection in the nineteenth. In these days they are located on "Reserves," the pensioners of the Canadian Government. They want the energy, industry, and ambition to enable them to support themselves. Efforts are made to inculcate in them habits of thrift and agricultural, pastoral, or manufacturing industry. In vain. To hunt and fight is their conception of the whole duty of man. Modern conditions of life permit of their doing the one but little, and the other not at all. The buffalo, by which they once lived, is extinct, except a small herd preserved in the National Park, near Banff, N.W. Territory, for the care of which provision has been made by the Dominion Government. There is seemingly no future before the Red Indians but that of extinction or absorption.* It is partly, no doubt, the realization of this that has prompted the Numismatic and Antiquarian Society of Montreal to lay the foundation of a collection of Indian antiquities in the Château de Ramezay. There are there three cases containing specimens of these antiquities, as also some of the "MoundBuilders" period. There are also other interesting relics, such as (1) the dagger of Tecumseh, the chief who rendered such able service on the Canadian side in the war of 1812-14; (2) the barrel-organ presented by George III. to Thayendanegea (Joseph Brant), the celebrated chief of the Six Nations, whose sister, "Molly Brant," married Colonel Sir William Johnson, who more than any other man in the North American States in the middle of the eighteenth century held the Red Indians of the border true to British interests. Sir William had a son, Sir John, who was evidently one of the United Empire Loyalists, for after the Revolutionary War he settled in Montreal. He became Superintendent of Indian affairs under the Government of Canada, and a member of the Legislative Council. He died in 1830. Both his portrait and that of Thayendanegea, his great-uncle, are to be seen in this museum. That of his more famous father, Sir William, a gentleman of Irish family, and a settler in the State of New York, is not seemingly to be found in the gallery. That a portrait of him exists may be inferred from the engraving in Withrow's History. The British power in North America owes to his influence with the Iroquois, or Indians of the Six Nations, what the Indian Government owes to that of Colonel Sir Robert Warburton with the Afridis. Sir William Johnson was adopted by the Mohawks as a member of their tribe, and chosen as one of their great sachems.
The history of Canada that is destined to live is that of its earliest
In the late war with Spain the U.S. Government organized a corps of "Roughriders," two or three troops of which are said to have been composed of Red Indians. The same might be done in Canada.
explorers and colonists, amongst whom the French rank first, and the English second. One of the most interesting monuments of that history is the Château de Ramezay in Montreal, of which I propose to record here what little I have been able to learn during a short visit to Canada. It was built about 1705 by Claude de Ramezay, "a distinguished soldier of noble birth," who was Governor of Montreal from 1703 to 1724. In some books I find the name spelt Ramsay or Ramesay, but Ramezay is the spelling adopted by the Numismatic and Antiquarian Society of Montreal. It is practically certain that the Governor of Montreal who bore the name was of Scotch extraction. It appears that there are De Ramsays now resident in or near Montreal, and I am informed that some members of the family from France recently visited that city, attracted by the interest attaching to the house which their "forbear" had built and for twenty years inhabited, and by the desire to see something of the country in the history of which he and others of the same name had borne a prominent part. The name is said to be now spelt Ramsay, after the good old Scotch fashion. In the seventeenth century the cadets of many families of the French nobility emigrated to Canada ("La Nouvelle France," as it was then called), while the nominal Viceroyalty was held by several of the highest nobles of the land, viz., the Prince de Condé, Duc de Montmorenci, and Duc de Ventadour. The emigrant nobles were granted seigneuries in various parts of New France, and in some cases these seigneuries have remained in their families to the present day. The Château de Ramezay is the town mansion of one of these seigneurial families. Very little, however, seems to be known of Claude de Ramezay. An autograph letter of his, presented by Judge Baby, is in the museum. In 1703 the Marquis de Vaudreuil, Commandant of Montreal, succeeded the Chevalier de Callière (who had also in his day been Governor or Commandant of Montreal) as Governor of Canada. Claude de Ramezay apparently succeeded De Vaudreuil as Military Governor of Montreal. He appears to have been a man of capacity, and to have interested himself keenly in the pioneering and exploring work to which so many men at that time devoted themselves. In 1702, during his Governorship, a French post was established at Detroit, and in 1717 another at the mouth of the Kaministiquia River, on Lake Superior, where Fort William now is. Nor was M. de Ramezay backward in organizing military expeditions against the English settlements in the New England States. During the whole of De Ramezay's Governorship the English and French colonies in America were at war, as indeed they almost always were, whether the mother-countries were at peace or not. In the winter of 1703-4, and again in 1708, a certain M. Hertel de Rouville led expeditions from Montreal, composed of French and Indians combined, against the New England settlements. The villages of Durfield and Haverhill were the victims. The attacks were made in the night-time, or just before daybreak. Those who were not killed in the onslaught were carried off as prisoners. Terrible stories are told of the barbarities committed in these two raids, but the truth of them is contested. It is, however, certain that the Indians would show no mercy, except in so far as the French could restrain them. We can all understand what that means in
an attack on a dark Canadian winter's night. The fact, however, remains that many of the inhabitants of Durfield, if not of Haverhill also, were carried prisoners to Montreal and settled near there. Their posterity are there still. The British Governors of the New England settlements remonstrated in terms of indignation against these butcheries, but the revenge that the British troops and settlers took was scarcely less savage, The Indians fought on either side-the Abenaquis, Hurons, Algonquins, Nipissings, and Illinois on that of the French; the Iroquois on that of the English. The atrocities that the Indians committed, and which the French and English commanders, much as they may have loathed them, could not prevent, fill us as we read them in these days with perfect horror. It seems incredible that men could be such fiends, and that human nature could bear such torture and yet live, as the victims did for hours and even days. The Iroquois combined much diplomatic astuteness with their prowess as warriors and cunning as woodsmen. They felt that they held the balance between the English and the French, and although as a rule friendly to the English, did not throw in their lot absolutely with them. Whenever they thought fit, they would make temporary truces or treaties with the French without consulting the English, whose allies they nominally were. Peace made on these terms was broken on the first opportunity. Ça va sans dire.
The Governorship of Claude de Ramezay is said to have ended in 1724, whether owing to his death or retirement we are not told. In 1745 the château passed into the hands of "La Compagnie des Indes," and remained with them till September, 1760, when Montreal surrendered to the united forces of Amherst, Haviland, and Murray. We are not told what use was made of the château from 1724 to 1745. Tradition associates with the château the name of De Vaudreuil, one celebrated in the annals of "La Nouvelle France," but it is not explicit as to date, or indeed any detail. The first Marquis de Vaudreuil, after having been for some years Commandant of Montreal, became Governor of Canada in 1703, and retained that post until he died, respected and regretted, in 1725. The second Marquis de Vaudreuil assumed the Governorship of Canada in 1754 or 1755. He was a man of seemingly honest purpose. but fell, according to Parkman's narrative, under the influence of the unscrupulous Intendant Bigot, who did his best to foster rivalry and jealousy between him and Montcalm. The result was fatal to France, but for that Bigot cared nothing. De Vaudreuil's jealousy often thwarted Montcalm's best efforts for the welfare of La Nouvelle France. This Marquis de Vaudreuil, together with Bigot and others, was, on his return to France, thrown into the Bastile. When brought to trial, he was honourably acquitted. He had served France for fifty-six years as Governor Successively of Three Rivers, Louisiana, and Canada, and is said to have
* The Chevalier de Lévis, next to Montcalm, the foremost French soldier in Canada in the middle of the 18th century, said, in justification of the employment of the Indians in the fierce fighting between the French and English colonists in North America, that the Indian was as necessary to the forest warfare of the West as light cavalry (cavalerie légère) to campaigning in Europe.