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nearly at the northern limit of Shen-hsî, when it to 1500. It is not built so grandly in its western turns directly south, and flowing for 500 miles portions after it has met the Ho River, nor should it between that province and Shan-hsî, comes to the be supposed that to the east of this point it is all solid edge of the Great Plain, and pursues an eastward masonry. It is formed by two strong retaining
The Chiang on the contrary flows south walls of brick, rising from granite foundations, the from Batang, between Sze-ch'wan and Yun-nan, space between being filled up with stones and earth. till it reaches the southern limit of the former pro- The breadth of it at the base is about 25 feet, at the vince. Then it turns north, and holds its way east- top 15, and the height varies from 15 to 30 feet. The ward through Sze-ch'wan and the other intervening surface at the top was covered with bricks, and is provinces till it enters the ocean in lat. 32°. The now overgrown with grass. What foreigners go to Ho does not pursue so regular a course. Its direc- visit from Peking is merely a loop-wall of later tion indeed from the edge of the plain is eastwards, formation, inclosing portions of Chih-lî and Shanbut in the course of time it has ever and anon hsî. changed its channel. Chinese history opens, in the The lakes are very many, but not on so great a Shû King, in the 24th century B.C., with an account scale as the rivers. It will be sufficient to mention of one of its inundations, described in terms which three-the T'ung-ting Hù, the largest, having a have suggested to some students the Noachian circumference of 220 miles, and entering into the deluge, and the labours on it of the Great Yü. names of the provinces Hú-pei and Hû-nan ; the The terrible calamities caused by it so often have Po-yang Hâ, in the north of Chiang-hsî, the seat procured for it the name of China's Sorrow. So of the manufactories of the best porcelain ; and the recently as 1887 it burst its southern bank near T'âi Hû, partly in Chiang-sû and partly in ChehChang Châu, and poured its mighty flood, with chiang, famous for its romantic scenery and hideous devastation and the destruction of millions numerous islets. of lives, into the populous province of Ho-nan. The country is rich in the products necessary for It is now the task of the Manchû rulers of the the support and comfort of the people, and for the empire to remedy this disaster, and regulate the adornment of their civilisation. There is in it terrible river for the future. Both the Ho and the every variety of climate ; but the average temperaChiang must have a course of more than 3000 miles. ture is lower than in any other country in the same These two rivers are incomparably the greatest in latitude. The Chinese themselves consider KwangChina, but there are many others which would tung, Kwang-hsî, and Yun-nan to be less healthy elsewhere be accounted great. And among those than the other provinces ; but foreigners using rivers we may well account the Grand Canal, in- proper precautions may enjoy their life in every tended to connect the northern and southern parts province. of the empire by an easy water communication ; Wheat, barley, maize, millet, and other cereals and this it did wlien it was in good order, extending are chiefly cultivated in the northern regions, and from Peking to Hang-châu in Cheh-chiany, a dis- rice in the southern. The writer once had a bag of tance of more than 600 miles. The glory of making oatmeal sent to him from Kalgan, north of the loopthis canal is due to Kublâi, the first sovereign wall mentioned above. Culinary or kitchen herbs, of the Yüan dynasty, of whom Marco Polo says: mushrooms, and aquatic vegetables, with ginger
He has caused a water communication to be and a variety of other condiments, are everywhere made in the shape of a wide and deep channel produced and largely used. From Formosa there dug between stream and stream, between lake comes sugar, and the cane thrives also in the and lake, forming as it were a great river on southern provinces. Oranges, punimeloes, lichis, which large vessels can ply.' Steam communi pomegranates, peaches, plantains, pine-apples, cation all along the eastern seaboard from
mangoes, grapes, and many other fruits and nuts, Canton to. T'ien-tsin las very much supersedel its are supplied in most markets. Tea is noted use, and portions of it are now in bad condition, below. Opium has been increasingly grown of but as a truly imperial achievement it continues to late within the country.
The Chinese are embe a grand memorial of Kublâi. Even Barrow phatically an agricultural people.
From time wrote of it in 1806: ‘In point of magnitude, our immemorial the sovereign has initiated the year, most extensive inland navigation in England can which begins with the spring, by turning over a no more be compared to the grand trunk that inter- few furrows in the 'sacred field ;' and in each prosects China than a park or garden fish-pond to the vince the highest authority performs a similar great lake of Winandermere.'
ceremony-to impress on the people the importance After the Grand Canal a few sentences may be of husbandry: The hoe holds the place of our given to the Great Wall, another vast achieve. spade ; the plough retains its primitive simplicity; ment of human labour, especially as in 1887 there irrigation is assiduously and skilfully employed. were paragraphs in many of our newspapers re- The tsing, or well, which was anciently in the presenting its existence as merely a myth. Not so centre of the plots of land assigned to the families useful as the canal, and having failed to answer the which cultivated them, is still seen in the north ; purpose for which it was intended—to be a defence and where the canal or river-beds are below the level against the incursions of the northern tribes, there of the fields much ingenuity is displayed in raising it still stands, while the walls of Hadrian and the water to them by wheels and scoops. No other Antoninus in our own country have crumbled to people show such a sense of the value of human the ground, and their course can only be indistinctly ordure as manure. Nothing that comes from man traced here and there. It was in 214 B.C. that or beast is allowed to be lost. All is preserved Shih Hwang Tî determined to erect a grand barrier and prepared for use. This does not conduce to the all along the north of his vast empire. The wall cleanliness of the towns or the fragrancy of the commences at the Shan-hâi Pass (40° N. lat., 1199 country; but it largely increases the productiveness 50' E. long.), where it was visited by a squadron of of the field and the garden. Her Majesty's vessels of war in 1839, and was seen, The horse, the ox, the sheep, the fowl, the dog, the pig ; as Lord Jocelyn describes it, 'scaling the precipices, These are the six animals which men breed for food, and topping the cragry hills of the country. From are well-known lines; but we do not now hear of this point it is carried westwards till it terminates horses being eaten ; and though dogs are to be at the Chia-yü barrier gate, the road through which seen in baskets in the markets, or cut up on the leads to the Western Regions. Its length in a stalls, they are such as have been carefully fed. straight line would be 1253 miles, but, if measured Fowls, including ducks and geese, are abundantly along its sinuosities, this distance must be increased | bred and consumed; of ducks, immense numbers