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same language, and are alike in almost every other respect.The Newchemass are an exception.—They come a great distance from the north; are much more savage than the others; speak a different language, wear a different dress, and are, in short, a different sort of people in every respect. Their beards are suffered to grow, like those of the Israelites; they are clothed, or rather covered, with wolf-skins; and take very little pains to keep themselves even decently clean. The Nootkians procure their war-songs and their paint from the Newchemass. Of the Nootkians about one-third are warriors; and if the same proportion exists among the other tribes, the whole number of fighting men on that part of the coast over which Maquina has any sway, may be estimated at about 3,500.
• Whenever they came to visit or trade, it was their general custom to stop a few miles distant, under some bluff or rock, and rig themselves out in their best manner, by painting and dressing their heads. On their first coming on shore, they were invited to eat by the king, when they brought to him such articles as he wanted; after which the rest of the inhabitants were permitted to purchase, the strangers being careful to keep them in their canoes until sold, under strict guard, to prevent their being stolen, the disposition of these people for thieving being so great that it is necessary to keep a watchful eye upon them.
“This was their usual mode of traffic; but whenever they wished to purchase any particular object, as for instance, a certain slave, or some other thing of which they were very desirous, the canoe that came for this purpose would lie off a little distance from the shore, and a kind of ambassador or representative of the king or chief by whom it was sent, dressed in their best manner, and with his head covered with the white down, would rise, and after making known the object of his mission, in a pompous speech, hold up specimens of such articles as he was instructed to offer in payment, mentioning the number or quantity of each; when, if the bargain was concluded, the exchange was immediately made.
On their visits of friendship or traffic, the chiefs alone used to sleep on shore, this was generally at the house of the king or head chief, the others passing the night on board of their canoes, which was done not only for the preservation of their property, but because they were not permitted to remain on shore, lest they might excite some disturbance, or co‘mit depredations.'-pp. 102-3-4.
Friendly Cove lies very near the 49th degree of north latitude; and is a creek about half a mile long and three-quarters broad,-bounded on the east by the mainland, and on the west by a peninsula, which runs nine miles into the sea in a southwesterly direction; and is, upon an average, about a mile and a-half in breadth. The shores of the Cove on these two sides
are perpendicularly abrupt, and the trees are growing quite to the edge of the water. The northern boundary, on the other hand, is a fine sandy beach, which rises by a gentle acclivity to the village of Nootka. Twenty houses or huts erected in a line, and decreasing in size, from that of the phylarch in the centre, according to the rank of the tyee or chief, --compose the place in which our two captives were obliged to spend the greater part of three tedious years. Nootkian politics are completely typified in this architectural subordination. Maquina is not properly a king; and is himself fully aware that he can only continue his ascendency by outdoing all the other chiefs in the abundance of his feasts, and in the expensiveness of his household. Like all feudal princes, indeed, he is nothing more than the greatest baron in the realm; and accordingly his own hut differs from that of his compeers,—not as a royal palace differs from an ordinary house, but as a capacious mansion differs from a contracted one. His present habitation is 100 feet long, 40 broad, and 14 in height; while the extreme buildings are only about 40 feet in length, 36 in breadth, and 10 in height. Each chief has an extent of authority proportionate to the size of his house;—and thus we are presented with perhaps the only existing pyramid of society that is not a figure of speech. In the hands of a vigorous ruler, like Maquina, the phylarchical authority is necessarily absolute; and we have seen, accordingly, that, though the other chiefs are consulted in cases of importance, they always have the fear of the club before their eyes, and know very well that the only alternative is, to conduct with moderation, or to be driven out of doors. Nothing, however, can equal the reverence and affection of the Nootkians for his present majesty. Whenever his life is placed in jeopardy they become frantic and inappeasable;-insomuch that when he was detained on board of the brig Lydia, as the price of Jewitt and Thompson's ransom, the natives ran to and fro along the shore; lacerating their faces, tearing out their hair, and howling in the most piteous strain.—They were equally attached to his son; and, indeed, whenever any member of the royal family received an insult, the indignity was felt by the meanest individual in the tribe. Thompson effectually tested all their principles before he had done with them; and we suppose that, except the king, there was hardly a single adult male in Nootka whom he did not knock down once, at least, before the termination of his captivity. On one occasion he gave them an opportunity to manifest their affection for Sat-sat-so-kis. The king had lately innovated immemorial custom by illuminating his own house with lamps instead of torches; and one evening as Thompson was replenishing the oil and lighting the
wicks, a knot of young Indians, the little prince among the rest, were imprudent enough to pull his trowsers, and pinch his legs. He lost all patience; and his royal highness was, accordingly, laid as low as the meanest of his subjects. He had before committed a great many letiones,—but this was emphatically the crimen majestatis. Jewitt and Maquina were both absent; but the latter soon heard the news; and when he saw Sat-satso-kis prostrate as he entered the cabin, he snatched up a musket in the greatest fury, and determined to shoot the offender on the spot. His agitation rendered him so awkward, however, that he did not load the gun till Jewitt had time to attain the house. When he entered, Maquina was frothing at the mouth, and in the act of presenting the musket,—while Thompson stood in a posture of defiance, and was calling on the king to
shoot and be d-d. Nor was it till he had exhausted all his peace-making eloquence, that Jewitt could persuade the former to spare the life of his pseudo-father, or the latter to receive his life at such unworthy hands. At length, however, the king was prevailed upon to deliver up the musket;—and when the tempest of anger had subsided into the calm of reflection -* John (said he) you die, --Thompson kill.' The storm, however, had by no means gone over. The whole tribe were so violently enraged, that Jewitt had to use all his persuasion, and Maquina to exercise all his authority, in order to prevent them from taking the life of the delinquent; who, in the mean time, seemed not to care half so much about his own existence as either the king or the armourer.
But, besides this strong attachment of his subjects, Maquina is distinguished from the other chiefs by the superior eclat of his personal decorations and accompaniments. His belts are broader, and his clothes are finer, than those of the subordinate tyees; and while the latter wear nothing more than a coarse, unornamented cap in the fashion of a sugar-loaf or truncated cone, the latter has an urn on the top of his, and a daubing in front, which was intended for a representation of whale-fishing. The whale is the royal fish; and wo be unto the presumptuous plebeian who dares to strike before Maquina has had a chance! The distribution of all booty is referred to the phylarch; who, of course, does not apportion to himself the smallest dividend. The division of political labour is not to be expected in such a state of society; and the prime ministry, the mastership of the ceremonies, as well as the office of jester or poet laureate, are all concentered in the same individual; who, in the Nootkian, is called climmer-habbee. The great part of his duty consists in steering the king's canoe,-in performing the feudal office of showing visitors to their appropriate seats at the royal table, and in enlivening the monotonous unsociability of a savage feast by all manner of antic capering and extravagant buffoonery. The present incumbent is Kinneclimmets. Maquina thinks he is a paragon of wit and cleverness; and, though Jewitt had taste enough to be disgusted with his performances, he never, theless found it expedient to fall in with the king's humour and to laugh as heartily as the rest. His comrade, however, could not dissemble; and whenever Kinneclimmets began to go through his manual exercise of heels,' Thompson escaped as speedily as possible,-uttering a suppressed exclamation of dd fool!' as he issued from the door. These exhibi. tions were generally cio ed with a dance by prince Sat-sat-sokis; who, as he was a great deal younger than Kinneclimmets, most commonly played the fool with admirable flexibility and contortion.
Nor is it in civil matters alone that the king is distinguished from the other tyees. He is pontifex maximus; and always spends two or three days in sololocution and
prayer, before he enters upon any enterprise of importance. On such occasions he binds around his head a fillet of red bark with a large branch of spruce on the top,—which is the Nootkian symbol of mourn. ing and humiliation; takes the great rattle in his hand, and goes alone into the woods very early in the morning. At evening he returns with a most solemn and rueful countenance; nor durst any of the tribe attempt to invade his reverie;though perhaps the object of all his supplications, is no more than that his god, or Quahootze, would deign to let him catch abundance of salmon, or harpoon a very great whale. For a week before going to take the latter fish, besides the fasting and prayer of the king,—the whole tribe were to be very abstemious,—to have no commerce with their wives -and to bathe and scrub themselves every day in the most violent manner. The ascetics themselves never lacerated their bodies with more cruelty, than do these faithful Nootkians with bushes and briars and shells of every description. But on one occasion, notwithstanding the rigorous performance of all these ceremonies, the king's harpoon broke and he caught no whale. In he came, out of all patience. Every thing and every body was to blame,-except his harpoon and himself. The whole tribe fell under his royal displeasure. He said there could be no doubt that his ill-luck was the consequence of their not scrubbing themselves effectually, or of their having held commerce with the squaws; and told them with an air betwixt indifference and desperation, that it would be in vain to think of catching whales, as long as they continued dirty and incontinent. Jewitt, however, made him a better harpoon; and the next day he entered
Friendly Cove leading in triumph a royal fish of unusual bulk. He was now as much pleased as he had been dissatisfied before; and all the members of the tribe who remained at home, contrived to manifest their sympathy by hooping outrageously and drumming with great violence on the sides and roofs of their houses.
Yet, notwithstanding all the abovementioned mummery of religion, the Nootkians have no rational idea of a Supreme Being; nor do they entertain any notion at all concerning a state of existence beyond the present. While Maquina was lamenting the death of Tootoosch, his brother-in-law, Jewitt undertook to console him by the assurance that the soul of the deceased had gone to happiness above:--but the king shook his infidel head; and, pointing to the earth, returned that there was the end of him. Though their idea of deity is not so conformable as our own to the dictates of reason; it is by no means so very irrational as that of most other
and barbarous nations. They never fall down before stocks and stones; nor are they guilty of worshipping even the likeness of any thing either in heaven or on earth. Their overruling Providence is some being who, like themselves, can have no office beyond the regulation of worldly events; and is entirely occupied in inflicting immediate punishment, or in conferring present reward upon the evil or good works of his creatures. Perhaps it is hardly possible, however, for any people to have a notion of power analogous to what they witness in sublunary things, without conceiving, at the same time, that it must reside in a being of similar configuration with some of those that are seen in the air or on the earth;—and, from an anecdote in the present volume, we are somewhat inclined to think that the Nootkians believe their Quahootze to be no other than an enormous cod-fish. On the night of the 15th of January, 1805, there was a lunar eclipse. The inhabitants sallied out universally; and began to sing and drum upon their houses in the most emphatic and violent manner. Jewitt was awakened;—he ran out to see what could be the matter; and, when he asked what they thought of effecting by such a noise, they said they were driving away a great cod-fish that was endeavouring to swallow the moon.
Instead of setting apart every seventh day for religious purposes, our natives devote seven days at once, about the close of every year, to the celebration of their deity. The ceremony is commenced very unaccountably. Without the least apparent forewarning, the king discharges a pistol under the ear of the prince; who, on his part, falls down as if dead, and is presently carried off, amidst the lamentations of the assem