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and spent the evening at our house; and Billy Traffick brought with him the Pilgrim's Progress. What a precious book for sure that is! and they say the man that wrote it was nothing but a poor tinker : Aye, and a very wicked sinner, as wicked as ever I was, before the Lord converted him.
Loveg. Yes, and what a proof is this what the grace oi God can do on the vilest of sinners; as also what wisdom God can communicate to his children, independent of human learning, however good that may be in its place : but that book is not less entertaining than instructive. Harpy are they who find they are travelling with the pilgrim towards the celestial city!
Far. Well, I do trust that some of us have got into that blessed road; though to my mind I hobble as bad spiritually as I do naturally. But how Harry was affected when he read about Christian's burden falling off his back when he came within sight of the cross! Dear child! what a tender heart be has ! what would I give if my heart was but as tender as his! and for sure what two sweet prayers we had from Billy Traffick, and my son, before they went away !
[Henry's appearance in the parlour prevented any further conversation on that subject. After some sa lutations the dialogue recommenced.]
Wor. Well, Mr. Henry, we are come somewhat sooner than expected to commemorate the goodness of God in your conversion and return. We shall be very glad soon to dispatch the ceremonies of the tea-table, that we may have time to hear of some further events than what we were acquainted with, before your arrival.—(To the farmer.) But, Mr. Littleworth, where are your other two daughters, Miss Polly and Miss Patty ?
Far. 'Las, Sir! I am afraid they think they are
not yet dressed fine enough to receive your he
Al dear! how glad I should be if they spent but haif the time in meditation and prayer they now spend at their twilight? there is no conceivance what pode there is in all our wicked hearts !--[Mrs. 11 orthy and family smile; the Farmer continues] Wy) Llonghi i should make some blunders in my countrifice fishion of talk; but my daughters have pune sort of a peticoat thing round their table, and I thought they called it a twilight; but my father loved his money too well to give us muchlarning.
Mrs. Wor. Never mind, my good friend, the mistake of calling a toilette a twilight: we all unde stand you.
[just then Miss Polly and Miss Patty came coirn from their twilight, and such curious tawdry Ayures as might be expected.
Miss Polly being the eldest, did the honours of the tea table, when she had enough to do to instruct Sam, primedo up in his livery, how to conduct himself in his office as footman, the conversation having been interrupted by their appearance, was thus resumed.]
Loveg. Mr. Henry, we have already been acquainted with many of the circumstances which first brought about the blessed change that has taken place upon your mind, though we have heard but little from you of what passed when you was in Antigua, after you became acquainted with the Moravians. Besides, Mr. Worthy is a subscriber to their mission, as also to other missionary societies lately established in our own country: he would therefore be glad of a further narration of what has come to your knowledge respecting these good people, and of their efforts to evimgelize the poor slaves.
Wor. Though I have no doubt of the authenticity of the reports we have received, from every quarter respecting the cruelties exercised over these ini
rable creatures, yet I should be glad of your infor
mation concerning the general state of the poor African slaves, so tar as it has come within your persour knowiedge.
Hen. O, Sir! the barbarous usage they receive from us is irexpressible. I have seen heaps of them myself bought and sold like a set of beasts in a common market. I believe many more, on an average, than eighty thousand of these poor .creatures are annually transported out of their own country, to be made the objects of this abominable traffic: and it is amazing what a number of these, amounting to nearly one-third, according to a most brutal expression, die in seasonir:g; and can it be wondered at, when they are taken from a life of comparative ease and indolence, to a life of the most cruel labour, and are kept in perpetual terror under the lash of their drivers all the time, with their hearts ready to break, having been lately torn from their dearest friends and connexions, and with no other expectation than to drag on a most miserable existence till, by the hand of death itself, which many of them most anxiously desire, they escape the clutches of their tormentors.
Wor. Did you say more than eighty thousand, Mr. Henry? Are you correct'in your information ? I thought it was about half that number.
Hen. Sir, upwards of half that number are cruelly exported from their own country for the use of the British islands alone. I myself saw, in the Kingston Gazette, three thousand of them advertised for sale at one time: the importation for one year only, into different islands, amounted to thirty-five thousand; and as the islands belonging to cher nations inust want at least as many as ourselves, I believe I should have been nearer the mark if I had said one hundred thousand than eighty thousand. Wor. Wität horrid robbery on the persons of our: fellow creatures, and what dreadful murder of human lives! for the conclusion certainly is, that not less than all that number are wanted to keep up the stock, to succeed those who lose their lives by their cruel banishment, or who have been killed off by barba-rous treatment and hard labour. For it seems the calculation has been reduced to a nicety, how far it may be most profitable to work them down, as you would a set of beasts, and buy fresh ones, or let them breed among themselves. And it is well known, that, if it were not for the effects of oppression and war, the human race, in every part of the globe, would rapidly increase.
Hen. Yes, Sir; and in all the plantations where these poor creatures are treated with any degree of mercy, they never find themselves under the necessity of resorting to those horrid markets.
Wor. It should also seem the infamous tricks practised to procure them, are the most treacherous and cruel : none of us can be ignorant of the fact, on what frivolous pretences we excite them to war among themselves, that we may gain the advantage of purchasing the unhappy captives, made by the unnatural contests excited among this poor ill-instructed race of our fellow creatures, who otherwise have a disposition to live in mutual peace and harmony with each other.
How much more would it become us to civilize and evangelize them, than to do all in our power to add to their natural brutality, that we may afterwards enslave them. Rum, guns, and gunpowder, it seems, are the general bribes given to these artless heathens from the artful Chrisuans, (so called in this country,) for the purposes of exciting intoxication and bloodshed among theni, tat, at their expence, we may gratify our abominable ambition and pride.
Hen. O yes, Sir! what you say is all very true. I myself was conversing with one who had been engaged in this detestable trade not long ago; and to convince me how many lives are wantonly lost before a few slaves can be procured for the West India islands, he told me several stories, one of which I well remember:-“ The commander of an African ship sent to acquaint one of their kings that he wanted a cargo of slaves: the king, for the sake of gain, promised to furnish him: and in order to do it, set out, designing to surprise some towns and make all the people prisoners. Some time afterwards the king sent him word he had not succeeded, having attempted to break up two towns, but was twice repulsed; but that he still hoped for success. He next met his enemies in the ope: field. A battle was fought which lasted three days, and the engagement was so bloody that four thousand five hundred men were slain on the spot!”
Wor. One shudders at the very relation of these execrable cruelties. But it seems we have other pretexts to cover this horrid trade: we buy them as slaves sold for theft and for adultery; and even their superstition and ignorance are to serve for our profit, while, for the supposed crime of witchcraft, many innocent sufferers are doomed to slavery through life. Thus we not only fill our colonies with the very refuse of the barbarous Africans, as we call them, (though worse barbarians ourselves;) but disgrace our national character by becoming the executioners of this most abject race; and even traverse the seas for that purpose, as though we had not enough of the same crimes to punish at home.
Hen. Yes, Sir, and how unjust che punishment of perpetuai slavery, and that oftentimes for crimes that scarcely deserve the name; but till we tempted them with the lure of gain there were no punishments by perpetual slavery. It seems, notwithstanding we chuse to cry them down as barbarians, that